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A Tale Of Love And Trust

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Ahem! Today… I'll tell you the story of the lost book of prophecies. This prophetic book was a mysterious tome full of stories of future events. Of course, many people craved this book, wishing to glimpse their futures. But no person, after obtaining this amazing book, ever found happiness. The reason? The book held frightful secrets not meant for people's eyes. That book came to be called the Dark Prognosticus and was sealed away. This…is the tale of that forgotten book's last owner. It is a tale of love…  And… a tale of trust…

The Mushroom Kingdom started off well today. The sun came up, leaving a glimmering brightness on the Mushroom Kingdom. Not very many people knew about the Mushroom Kingdom, otherwise known as the Mushroom World. It was a strange and mystical place, filled with otherworldly beings; though a few of them weren't.

Peach Toadstool was known as the princess of the Mushroom Kingdom. She was tall, and had a headstrong approach to handling most problems in the kingdom. Her castle was huge, and she had a loyal following of Toads, which were human-like creatures that wore mushroom caps on their heads.

But someone who opposed her; someone much less human. He was King Bowser, a huge turtle-dragon hybrid, otherwise known as a Koopa. He ruled an area not too far away from the Mushroom Kingdom. Practically other week he wanted to kidnap Peach for his own selfish reasons. He had a huge following, one even bigger than Princess Peach's. And to top it off, he also had 7 very powerful Koopalings, along with his very own son.

So how was King Bowser stopped? Who would be able to rescue Princess Peach when she would inevitably be kidnapped?

The Super Mario Bros. Mario and Luigi were the protectors of the Mushroom Kingdom, always having to travel to Bowser's Castle to rescue Peach. But they weren't alone.

Violet, a 19-year-old woman lived with the two heroes. She wasn't as skilled as the Mario Bros, but she still tried her hardest to save the day. Several months ago had been when they found her, but the circumstances surrounding how she got there were… mysterious…

All three had elemental powers. Mario's was fire, Luigi's electricity, and Violet's ice. Mario and Luigi found theirs back during the Beanbean Kingdom incident, which happened before Violet came along. Violet found her powers only a couple weeks after Mario and Luigi found her.

Today, thankfully, there weren't any attacks from Bowser or anything like that. Mario's house was small, though all three residents were trying to get it renovated at some point. But today, only Mario was in his bed…

It took a while for Mario to wake up, considering that his alarm that he normally set didn't go off. He woke up slowly, almost considering going back to sleep for a couple minutes just to get that little bit of extra rest in before starting the day.

Mario turned over in his bed and looked at his alarm clock, only to see that it was 10:18 AM, over two hours past the normal time he woke up.

"Shoot!" Mario quickly arose out of his bed and ran to his drawer, not wanting to waste any more time. He quickly put on his dress clothes, which consisted of a plain red shirt, a pair of blue overalls, socks and shoes, and his trusty red hat with an M on it.

When Mario didn't see Violet or Luigi in their beds, the plumber assumed they had already gone out. After making a short breakfast, he walked out the door. The sun was already high in the sky, with the clouds being scarce.

Mario almost checked his mailbox, until he remembered that it was Sunday. It felt weird, waking up late on a Sunday; though there was nothing wrong with it.

Today was a good day to go visit Peach. Bowser usually didn't attack on Sundays, so Mario was glad for that. He loved the Princess a lot, and he wanted to be in a relationship with her. It was pretty hard to ask, considering she was stolen every other week. Mario was sure Bowser was going to try to marry her at some point, but he knew he would be able to stop him when that time came.

It was kind of ironic how Luigi was in a relationship and he wasn't. Luigi was in a relationship with Violet, and they were currently boyfriend and girlfriend, and they hadn't done anything too serious yet. Luigi and Violet became a couple only a couple months after Violet got found in the kingdom.

Mario walked for a while before he finally got to Toad Town. The place was normally lively, sprawling with Toads, Koopas, and other friendly species that decided not to serve loyal to Bowser. But today, it was not.

Mario walked through the town. It was silent. Everything about it felt suspicious. Worrying thoughts popped up in Mario's head. Did something happen to everyone? Did Bowser plan a huge invasion?

Mario searched every house, every store, and every other building he could. Nothing. Just what happened? Wait…one last building to check.

Peach's Castle.

Mario broke into a sprint. Many awful scenarios popped up in his head. He opened the castle doors, and…


Dimmsdale, California housed a kid that was not average. He was 11 years old, and has something most kids did not have.

Fairy God Parents.

They were assigned to any kid that felt misery in their lives. Timmy's reason for getting fairies was that when he was 9, a horrible 16-year-old babysitter had been assigned to him when his parents started going out nearly every night.

That babysitter's name was Vicky. Vicky forced Timmy to do all of her chores for her constantly, and he hated every second of it. Her first night of babysitting wasn't even over yet before Cosmo and Wanda were assigned to be Timmy's fairies.

Cosmo wasn't as smart as most, but he still was fun to have around, and tried to make things right when they were wrong. Wanda, his wife, was a lot smarter. At times, she was seen as a nag, but other times her wit would prove to be helpful to the situation.

Not too long ago, they both had a baby; details not needed. The baby ended up being a boy and they named him Poof.

Cosmo and Wanda had been Timmy's fairies for almost two years now. In those two years, they had a lot of adventures.

Today was Sunday, the second and last day of the weekend before school started back up again for the week. Timmy's Sunday abruptly started when he suddenly heard the alarm clock ringing, and immediately sprang up to turn it off.

After the alarm was silenced, Timmy yawned and rubbed his eyes., Cosmo, Wanda and Poof then flew out of the fishbowl next to the bed.

Cosmo and Wanda had to be disguised as fish sometimes, because one of the rules of Fairy Godparents in Da Rules that no one can ever know of their existence, or they will have to go away forever, and all traces of their magic would be lost forever. Hundreds of little rules were in Da Rules, and one of them in because of Timmy's previous wish for it to be Christmas every day.

"Wakey wakey, Timmy!" Cosmo said, eager to be awake. "It's time for another day of school!"

"It's Sunday, Cosmo," Wanda corrected.

"Oh," Cosmo realized his mistake. "Then… it's time for another day of the weekend!"

"Thanks, Cosmo," Timmy said. "But I'm sure Vicky is going to babysit and make me do chores all day." He groaned, knowing that he would most likely be right.

As if on cue, Timmy's parents, Terrance and Tamara opened the door to the room, and Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof popped back into the fishbowl just in time before the parents saw.

Terrance and Tamara were… sometimes forgetful. They still loved their son, even if they wondered why most of his things were the same two colors, pink and green, and more recently, some of them were purple.

"Hey Timmy!" Terrance called out. "Guess what? Vicky…"

Timmy could practically guess what his dad was going to say.

"Is not babysitting you today!" Terrance finished, surprising Timmy with his answer.

"What?" Timmy asked in confusion.

"We tried to call Vicky," Tamara started to explain. "But her parents answered saying something about her having a sore throat, so she had to cancel for a few days."

"Which means that we are going to spend the day together!" Terrance added. "We're going to go the park, and we also called your friend's parents so your friends could come too!"

Timmy was excited. What could've been a potentially awful Sunday has now turned into one that could actually seem enjoyable. He couldn't wait to go to the park. Today was going to be great.

Chapter Text

Mario covered his ears and closed his eyes because of the deafening sound. After he opened his eyes, he couldn't believe what was going on.

The castle was filled to the brim with balloons, banners, and a whole bunch of other stuff. Pretty much all of them had Mario's name on them. Mario forgot that it was his birthday today. How could he forget a day as important as this?

"Wow…" Mario said. Now he knew why there was nobody in town, because they were waiting for Mario to get to the party. It also explained why Violet and Luigi weren't in bed this morning.


Mario and Luigi were twins, so they had to have the same birthday. In fact, they always had their birthdays together. So why was it different this year? And where was Luigi? He hadn't been in bed when Mario woke up.

"Happy birthday, Mario! How do you like the party?" Peach asked, putting Mario out of his thoughts.

A lot of effort went into the party, and almost everyone Mario knew save for a few were here. And still… it didn't feel right. Not without Luigi. There was no way he was just going to abandon his brother.

Before Mario could get in a world edgewise, Peach grabbed his hand and dragged him over to the other side of the huge room. There were tables lined with chairs to sit on, plus there was a corner full of presents. On another corner was something huge that was covered with a tarp, that something was probably the cake.

Mario decided to hold his thoughts for now and wait to ask the princess about Luigi. Whatever the reason could be for his absence, it surely could be easily explained…


Though the park wasn't that far away, the anticipation made it feel much, much longer. Timmy's mind was only on what he was going to do today. Nothing else.

Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof were disguised as balloons so they could go along without being caught as fairies. The way they were distinguishable was the color of their balloons being related to their hair color, but in Poof's case, it was his clothing color, purple.

Around 15 minutes later, they arrived at the park. Once they got there, Timmy, his parents, and his balloon godparents quickly got out of the car.

"Oh boy!" Timmy cheered. "Today's going to be great!"

"Yep!" Cosmo agreed. "I don't see anything that could go wrong!"

Terrance and Tamara decided to sit on a bench and chat Timmy found Chester and AJ. The other two kids were already playing Frisbee, seeing as how Timmy got there a little later than they thought he would.

"Oh, hey Timmy!" Chester said, taking his attention off the Frisbee speeding toward him.

"Hey, Chester. Mind if I join?" Timmy asked.

Chester was about to say sure, until the Frisbee he had neglected to see hit him in the side of the head. Though he didn't pay much attention to it as he just picked up the Frisbee. "Go long, Timmy!" Chester yelled. Chester threw the Frisbee in the air, allowing Timmy to run after it, hoping to catch it before it landed on the ground.

"Man, seeing Timmy play with his friends brings me back to when I was a child." Terrance said over at the bench. "Just like the time when I won that race without even realizing it! I thought I had fallen asleep after being trained by a kid that looked exactly like Timmy!"

"Yeah, but I have to wonder…" Tamara pondered. "Doesn't it seem like Timmy gets a lot more stuff than we buy him?"

Terrance thought for a moment at hearing this. "Like those goldfish?"

"Yes!" Tamara agreed. "And some of those video games he has. I don't remember ever buying him that Decimator game, do you?"

"No…" Terrance answered. "But we know that he's not stealing them; we learned that the kid with the grey skin stole stuff a while back."

"That same kid who took the deed to our house and Timmy got it back?" Tamara asked. "I still can't believe Timmy learned Kung Fu so fast." After her tangent, she went back to thinking about how Timmy got all that extra stuff. "Hmm… maybe he has a secret job!"

"Oh yeah!" Terrance agreed, that explanation being highly plausible. "And his secret job is how he gets the money to buy all of that stuff!" He added.

"Exactly! But wait…" Tamara had a thought. "How can Timmy have a secret job if Vicky is babysitting him all the time?"

"Maybe when she's not babysitting?" Terrance asked. "But his schedule would be have to be erratic, and we do have Vicky over almost every night…" Something about this just didn't add up, and he knew it. How did Timmy get the pink and green skateboards? Or the pink and green balloons he brought today? Or those… pink and green eyed goldfish… Terrance had a feeling about something.

"Haven't you noticed how a lot of his stuff that he has is always pink and green?" Terrance asked, voicing his thoughts out loud.

"Yeah…" Tamara said. "Like the balloons, the skateboards…"

"And the goldfish," They both finished. There was a beat of uncomfortable silence.

"Maybe we should ask him about it?" Terrance suggested.

"No, let's wait until tomorrow," Tamara said. "I don't want to spoil his fun today."

A little while later, Chester and AJ went home, and Timmy said his goodbyes to them. Timmy then went over to his parents, and ordered ice cream at a nearby ice cream stand.

"Hello!" The stand owner, Bob, said. "What can I get you three today?"

"I'll have a…" Terrance looked at the different flavors, trying to calculate his decision. "Chocolate! No wait, vanilla! No! I mean-"

"Why don't you just get a strawberry, dear?" Tamara suggested, wanting to speed up this process.

"Yeah!" Terrance finally decided. "I'll have a strawberry!"

"And I'll also have a strawberry." Tamara said.

"And I'll have a… chocolate!" Timmy added.

"Okay!" Bob said. "Two strawberries and one chocolate, coming up!" After about a minute, the ice creams were ready. "That'll be $2.25, please."

"Here you go." Tamara said, giving the owner two dollars and twenty-five cents.

"Thank you!" Bob said. "Enjoy your ice cream!"

Timmy, Terrance, and Tamara went over to a nearby bench so they could eat their ice cream. Even though they agreed to only have one each, soon after Terrance finished his, he was still hungry.

"Can I get another ice cream?" Terrance asked.

"No!" Tamara said, thinking his question was ridiculous. "Remember what we agreed on?"

"Agreed on what?" Terrance asked.

"That we agreed to only have one ice cream!" Tamara explained.

"Oh!" Terrance realized. "Can I still have another ice cream?"

Tamara sighed in exasperation. "Fine! But one more!" She and Terrance went back to the ice cream stand, while Timmy still sat at the bench. Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof flew up to Timmy, disguised as birds.

"So Timmy, how's your day going?" Wanda asked.

"Oh, it's going great!" Timmy said. "Also, I wanted to ask you about something I wanted to do tomorrow morning before school started."

"Like what?" Cosmo asked.

"Maybe I could do a couple of trilogy wishes tomorrow morning?" Timmy asked.

"Oh! That sounds like a great idea!" Wanda said. "What do you think, Cosmo?"

"That does sound like a good idea!" Cosmo agreed.

Soon, Terrance and Tamara came back, Terrance eating his new ice cream. They hadn't realized how much of the day they had spent at the park, because it was already past 5 PM. They got back in the car, and went home, each of them having something different on their minds.

Timmy was thinking about what his trilogy wishes would be tomorrow, and Terrance and Tamara were thinking about something entirely different. Namely, the most likely fact that they were going to confront Timmy tomorrow on where he gets his stuff from, and why it's all pink and green.

Though the party was going strong for a couple hours, Luigi never went out of Mario's mind. Every second, he thought of his twin brother.

Almost everyone Mario knew was there. For example, almost all of the partners that had joined Mario on his last couple of adventures, such as Goombario, Parakarry, Lakilester, Vivian, Ms. Mowz, etc. And, all of the residents of Toad Town had also come to the party.

But Mario still had that nagging feeling in his mind. He needed to find where Luigi was. Even though he was in the middle of one of the party games, he couldn't just keep waiting.

So, Mario thought of a simple plan that would be easy to execute. He excused himself to the restroom, and then walked over to the bathroom, but then went to one of the back rooms of the castle to find an exit.

The room he happened to go into was a long hallway that led to another door. He quickened his pace, lest anyone get suspicious. And then, he opened the door to outside. But there was a factor he hadn't considered.

Yoshi, Mario's dinosaur pal, was out in the garden, fixing up some things. Back when Mario was a baby, Yoshi had raised him and Luigi for some of their youth. And thanks to that, he could pretty much understand what all Yoshis say. Mario hoped to sneak by Yoshi, but to Mario's dismay, Yoshi noticed him.

"Oh, hey Mario!" Yoshi greeted. "How come you're leaving the party?"

At first, Mario struggled to come up with a response. He didn't expect to be put on the spot like this. "W-W-Well…" Wait. This was the perfect time to ask about Luigi. "Actually, do you know where Luigi is?"

"I ran into him earlier, and he said something about needing to hurry to the grocery store," Yoshi begun to explain. "He said it was really important, but I dunno." Yoshi shrugged.

Grocery store? What the hell?

"Um… thanks Yoshi. I'll see you later." Mario quickly said, before running off.

True to Yoshi's word, Luigi was in fact doing grocery shopping. It was simple… At least Luigi thought it was. He was at the local Mushroom Kingdom grocery store, and the grocery list he had been given by Violet earlier was insane.

"Where am I even supposed to find some of these?" Luigi questioned, in exasperation. "A trampoline? A high-powered volt drill? This is a grocery store!"

Luigi wasn't sure how he was going to complete this shopping list. Even though Violet said it was important, it just seemed too much. Would he have to go find another store to complete this? And now that he thought about it, where was the cashier? Where were any of the employees? Heck, where were even any of the customers?

When Luigi got to the store that morning, he just expected it to be closed, due to no vehicles being there. But when he had walked up to the entrance, there was an "OPEN" sign… so what was going on?

Thanks to Yoshi's helpful information, Mario ran to the local grocery store; trying to go back to his house to get his car would take too much time. The more he thought about this, the more it pissed him off. Nothing like this happened any other year. So why now?

Soon, Mario got to the grocery store; thankful that there was only one. He slowed to a walk to conserve energy as he neared the entrance. It was odd that the store would be open if literally no one were there, due to the sign saying, "OPEN".

Mario entered the store, a chime ringing above the bell indicating a customer entering. Now that he was in the store, he only had one mission. Find Luigi.

And so, Mario tried to scan the store as fast as he could. He did this by going to each aisle and looking down it if Luigi was there. If he wasn't, he went to the next aisle. Though it did take several aisles, Mario did eventually find Luigi. "Luigi!" Mario said, relieved to finally see his brother.

"Oh, hey Mario!" Luigi said, turning around to face Mario. "Did you come to help me with the grocery shopping?"

"Huh?" Mario asked. "Luigi… why aren't you at the party?"

"Hmm?" Luigi asked, raising an eyebrow. "What party? What are we celebrating?"

Mario was about to answer by saying that it was his and Luigi's birthday party, but he froze. A memory came back to him, almost intruding his thoughts.

It was a couple days before the party, and Mario got everything planned out, thanks to some help he had. Right now, he was hanging out with Peach.

For this year's party, he wanted it to be about Luigi. Not himself, and he discussed that with Peach. Though, at the time, he did end up a little drunk…

" So… Peach…" Mario started, his voice a little slurred. "We talked about before… how I wanted this year's party to be about Luigi… you remember, right?"

Though Mario thought it was a trick of the light, Peach's eyes glowed yellow. He didn't even notice it. 

" Yes, Mario… I understand…" Peach said with an eerie smile. "In fact, I want you to have this." She took a small drink from her nightstand and handed it to Mario. "Drink it, it'll help you feel better."

Mario's head was hurting, so it would help. Upon grabbing it, he was quick to chug the drink down. But soon, he felt the aftertaste. It was horrible, and he ended up triggering his gag reflex, causing him to cough. 

Mario fell to his knees, spots appearing in his vision. And then, he fell asleep…

The new memory raised many questions. What was up with Peach's eyes? And what was in that drink? Mario didn't remember anything that morning about wanting the party to be about Luigi. It was all too suspicious… and even though his gut told him otherwise, he soon decided on a culprit for all this.


Even though it didn't make sense, it was the only logical conclusion he could come up with. But… should he tell Luigi? Luigi always was, to tell the truth, more cowardly than Mario, and Mario didn't want to involve his brother in a situation like this.

Which was Mario decided that for now, he had to lie.

"Uh… it was just a party for…" Mario slowly said as he came up with his lie. "For celebrating… a new statue of Peach being finished!"

"Oh, really?" Luigi asked with slight confusion. "I thought they cancelled that I while ago." He shrugged. "Wait, how come you aren't at the party?"

The flaw in Mario's lie quickly came back to bite him. That's why he hated lying. It was wrong, and only made things more complicated. But for now, he had to. "Uh, Peach wondered where you were, and told me to come find you?" Mario nervously smiled.

"That makes sense." Luigi said. "Half of this grocery list Violet gave me doesn't make sense, and I'd really like to relax with a party."

"Yeah, well let's head on over to the party, shall we?" Mario asked.

"Oh, sure, bro!" Luigi answered. "The rest of this grocery list can wait." He put said grocery list in his pocket. "Let's go to that party!"

The two exited the store, and headed for Peach's castle. On the way, Mario remembered that he had already opened his presents, and he was sure that the entirety of his cake had been eaten. For now, he needed to ask Luigi a question, just to be sure of something.

"Luigi, what did you do this morning?" Mario asked.

"Oh, what I did this morning?" Luigi answered with a question. "Well, I did get up around 9, and Violet gave me a grocery list, and since I was awake first, she asked me to fill it out."

Mario noted this. Was Violet in on this too? Why? Luigi was her boyfriend, for crying out loud!

"After she gave me the grocery list, I ate breakfast and walked to the store," Luigi continued. "When I did start to go through the list, it just seemed weird, though I did try to follow the list anyway. Plus, there wasn't anyone else there, but it was open. Isn't that weird?"

"Yeah, it is weird," Mario agreed.

As they continued back to Peach's Castle, they eventually forgot about the circumstances, but only temporarily. Nevertheless, none of them knew about what would be happening not too long from now…

Fairy World was where all fairies lived before they were assigned to kids that needed them. Some still were in training, while others lived happily in their homes, going about their daily lives.

The ruler of Fairy World was Jorgen Von Strangle. His job was to do the absolute best he could to make sure that Fairy World was in absolutely no danger whatsoever.

There were also two opposing worlds; Anti-Fairy World, and Pixie World. Anti-Fairy World was a reverse Fairy World. Pixie World wanted to spread all of its laws and regulations everywhere it could, although it hadn't gotten very far yet.

Today, Jorgen knew that something was wrong.

"The Darkness is coming," Jorgen said as he stood in his house. He had just read the prophecy. He knew what was going to happen if he didn't act.

Tomorrow, around 6:35 AM, he had to fulfill the first part of the prophecy, so he could be one step closer getting an early start to stopping the Darkness.

But something in the back of his mind said that the Darkness wouldn't be the only problem. No… there was something yet to be made… and… something under the Earth.

Chapter Text

Mario had a headache when he woke up next morning.

When the two got back to Peach's Castle, yesterday, things were… strange. The castle itself had been stripped signs of being a birthday party, and just turned into a general party. But Mario didn't say anything, even though his gut was practically screaming at him to. Would he regret it? Only time would tell…

So for now, everything was fine. Mario stood up and stretched as he woke up. There was hardly anyone else left at the party; the majority of the partygoers must have already gone home.

Before Mario could even do so much as walk around a little bit, a Toad came running up to him, Toad's face covered with a look of shock and worry.

"M-M-MARIO!" Toad screamed, while stammering a little. "P-P-Peach… WAS KIDNAPPED!"

Even though Mario held enmity to Peach right now, he knew that she had to be rescued. Bowser almost always nabbed her, so it would make sense that he did it again.

"W-W-We don't know what happened, Mario!" Toad continued. "She's just… gone!"

"It's alright, Toad, I'll take care of it." Mario reassured.

"Oh! Thank you, Mario!" Toad said, relieved that Mario would once again save the day.

Mario then quickly woke up both Violet and Luigi, both of them being shocked at Peach being kidnapped. Then, the three of them left Peach's Castle, and made a beeline for Bowser's.

Blackness. Japanese letters, followed by streams of green light behind it. A ding. The simulation had started.

Timmy Turner held a pair of dark glasses in his hand, the light reflecting from them showing the moon with several clouds. Timmy put on the pair of glasses, and instead of his usual attire, he wore a black shirt and pants, along with a grey jacket, with a grey belt to hold up the pants.

"I'm the one."

Timmy leaped off of the tall building he was standing on, landing onto the roof of a much shorter building. He quickly rolled into a run as he made his way across the rooftop.

Hiding near under a small cave in the roof, Mr. Crocker emerged. Mr. Crocker was Timmy's teacher in school; but he wasn't just that. Ever since the show and tell day when Timmy brought in a little dinosaur, Crocker had been suspicious of Timmy's fairies and has tried to capture them ever since. But since this was just a simulation, Crocker only served as the force trying to stop Timmy.

"He's the one." Crocker said. He held up a small laser gun, with electricity sparkling at the end of it. Springing up, Mr. Crocker began his chase after Timmy.

A couple seconds later, Crocker fired the gun several times in quick succession. Time slowed to a crawl when Timmy performed acrobatic moves to dodge the lasers; and so he did. Time resumed.

As the chase continued, Timmy used all his might to leap from the top of one building over to another one, a deadly fall awaiting him if he failed. Luckily, he succeeded, and he landed on the other building. Timmy did a flip and then stopped and turned around to face Crocker.

Crocker soon stopped in front of him, the teacher's steps seeming to make a small dent in the building. Crocker smiled. "There's no escaping, Mr. Turner." Crocker said. Then, there was slight static, and two more Crockers seamlessly appeared on each side of Crocker.

"There's no escaping, Mr. Turner." The Crocker on the left said, clearly just repeating what one of the others said.

"I already said that!" The right Crocker said.

"No, I said it!" The middle Crocker argued.

"Are we gorgeous or what?" The left Crocker asked, changing the subject before it devolved into an endless argument. The other two Crockers smiled at this, and then resumed their goal.

"There's no escaping the world's most gorgeous army, Mr. Turner!" The three Crockers said as they walked toward Timmy, forcing him to stand on the edge of the building. He almost lost his balance as he looked down at the street and saw a parked car. He got an idea.

Narrowing his eyes, Timmy jumped into the air, going slightly backward. Gravity soon took affect as he landed on a parked car. The car was practically destroyed after that landing. Ripples went across the ground.

"Yes!" Timmy commented, glad that his plan had worked. The three Crockers looked down at him from the building, surprised that he wasn't harmed.

"Nobody defeats Teo, master of the martial arts!" Timmy exclaimed as he did some poses. Angered, the three Crockers readied their laser guns and begun firing.

Time slowed to a crawl as Timmy avoided the lasers. At one point, he did a front flip and saw that if he hadn't slowed down a little, he would've been toast, due to seeing three blasts right in front of him. Then, he jumped to avoid another one.

"Alright Timmy!"

Cosmo cheered that as he, Wanda and Poof were watching the simulation. They were in a high tech lab that allowed the simulation to run.

"You always may be chosen last at school for kickball, or as lab partner, and uh…" Cosmo began before he forgot what he would say next.

"But in your trilogy wishes, you're always the Chosen One!" Wanda finished for him.

As they watched the simulation, they saw Timmy near the entrance of a Chinese restaurant. The Crockers were pursuing him, but they stopped. There was more static, but now each Crocker created a duplicate of himself. They all readied their laser guns.

"Hey, you guys look hungry," Timmy said. "Would you like sweet and sour pork, or… KAPOW!" As he said that last part, he jumped up and did a side kick to the air, unleashing a wave of energy.

The Crockers lowered their laser guns as they all spoke at once. "Actually, we're allergic to MSG-" But before they could finish, the wave of energy sent them flying backward into a nearby building, screaming.

But it didn't defeat them. The Crockers multiplied rapidly, and then started to give chase. Timmy ran away as fast as he could, trying to dodge the oncoming fire. An alarm went off in the lab. Wanda grabbed the phone and screamed into it, "Timmy, get the ring, get the ring!"

As Timmy ran, he heard a phone ring inside a telephone booth. He made it in there as fast as he could, and then answered the phone. "Get me a new trilogy wish! This one's not fun anymore!" Timmy yelled as all of the Crockers prepared to fire at him.

But they heard him say that, they dropped their weapons in surprise. "What? We're totally fun!" They all said as they reached for something. "Because fun starts with F!" They grabbed huge Fs that were metal and had spikes on the ends of them and hurled them at the phone booth.

But with a "POOF!", Timmy was gone. The metal Fs hit the glass of the phone booth.

Bowser's Castle would be huge… if it wasn't constantly being renovated every couple of months due to something happening to it. Right now, the castle was smaller than Bowser would've liked, but he had to accept it for now, lest he not have a castle at all for he and his minions to live in. Ever since the Star Spirits incident, nearly all of Bowser's Castle had been destroyed, and the rebuilding process took a while.

And speaking of minions… Bowser had a lot of them. Pretty much all of them were at this meeting he was having at this instant. Almost all of them… It was almost like Bowser had the most rotten luck today. All 7 of his Koopalings seemed to come down with some sickness, forcing them to stay in their beds and rest until they get better.

Thankfully, two of his top minions, his 6 year old son which he named Bowser Jr (or Junior for short) and Kammy Koopa, who was getting near the end of her years as a Koopa were both well today. Speaking of today, today there was a very important meeting

"BWA HA HA!" Bowser roared, starting the meeting. "Listen well, my minions! It's time to initiate my awesome plot to invade Mushroom Castle! Today is the day that I make my beloved Princess Peach ALL MINE!" Bowser tried for so long and so hard to get married to her, but each and every time something or another stopped him.

"And if that weren't awesome enough, I'll ALSO stomp her little mustache and ice wielding buddies!" Bowser continued. He absolutely hated Mario and Luigi, but something about Violet just… felt like he wanted to take out his rage on her more than anyone.

After this, the entire crowd of minions cheered. The speech had begun to motivate them, with them saying things such as, "It's OUR turn!" "Bowser, Bowser, WOO!" But soon, the minions noticed something, and they started to say different things, "WHOA!" "Your rudeness!" "We're under attack!"

"Bwa ha ha ha ha!" Bowser laughed, assuming what his minions were saying was a joke. " 'We're under attack!' You jokers are the best!" Soon, he realized that there was some truth in what they were saying. He saw a couple of people that looked hairy… and had red, green, and purple caps…

"Hey!" Bowser yelled. "Who are those hairy guys in the back? We SHAVE around here, minions!" He jumped to where he saw the hats, his minions clearing out of the way to give him a space to land.

"Blargh!" Bowser groaned. "Mario! Violet! …AND Luigi?!" He should've known that they would've come to ruin this meeting. What didn't they ruin for him? "How'd you get in here?"

Mario smirked a little bit. "Oh, it was just that your front gate was wide open, and the fact that nobody was guarding it."

"What? My front gate was open?" Bower questioned, now furious that something like this had happened. He stomped the floor in rage. "How many times have I told those idiots? If you're the last in, LOCK THE GATE!"

"Bowser! You need to watch your blood pressure!" Kammy reminded, walking over to him. Also, Junior went over in his smaller custom-made 'Klown-Kar'. After what Kammy said, Bowser tried to calm down a little bit, although he was still very mad.

"Quiet, Bowser!" Luigi yelled. "We know you kidnapped Princess Peach!" He was sure of his statement, because nearly every time before, it had been Bowser. So why would now be any different? "Now where'd you put her?"

This statement confused the villain party. They were literally in the middle of planning for the kidnapping.

"You idiots!" Junior yelled. "We haven't even kidnapped her yet!"

"Yeah…" Bowser agreed, also confused. "We're also now about to launch our atta-"


The next trilogy wish simulation was different from the last one. The setting was much brighter, and it looked to be closer to medieval times. So because of that, Timmy's outfit was changed to better represent this time; and Timmy immediately took notice of this.

"Cool! I'm in middle earth!" Timmy said as he walked around.

Just then, Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof also came into the simulation, the reason being so that another incident with what happened in the last simulation could be avoided. Also, the three fairies sported clothes that better fit the simulation.

However, Cosmo's was… not as pretty. Even though it took inspiration from one of the less desirable characters of the series, he still did a good job on reflecting it.

Wanda got out a ring. It was a big one, and it had a lot of bumps on it. "Here you go, Chosen One!" She handed Timmy the ring. "One ring to rule them all."

Timmy frowned and raised an eyebrow as he held the ring in his palm. "This is a teething ring!"

"Oh, sorry," Wanda apologized. "Poof's teething."

"Yeah, I know." Timmy said, as he rose up his arm to show Poof was teething on it. He pulled his arm away, and then gave Poof the ring, which the baby fairy happily started to teeth on.

Wanda got out another ring and handed it to Timmy. The ring smelled, and looked more like something someone would eat during lunch. "One ring to rule-"

"This is an onion ring!" Timmy yelled in annoyance.

"Oh! That's mine!" Cosmo said, tackling Timmy to the ground to grab the ring. "Precious!" He took a bite out of it. "And delicious!"

Timmy groaned as he stood up. "Can the next ring please be something that isn't food on for the baby?" He questioned.

"Sorry, I just know I have that ring somewhere." Wanda apologized, checking her pockets. But when she looked at her hand, she saw it was just on her finger the whole time. "Oh, here it is!" Wanda took the ring off of her finger and flicked it over to Timmy. He caught in his hand, and then put it on his finger. Once he did, all four of them were suddenly teleported somewhere else.

They were now on a mountain, a stark contrast to where they were earlier. The sky glowed a dark, foreboding red. Lava spewed from the mountain. It started to rain.

"Only the Chosen One can take this ring and drop it into the fires of dark mount gloom," Wanda explained, as they continued the trek up the mountain. She bit into a large piece of chocolate that happened to be on the mountain.

"What?" Timmy exclaimed. "Are you telling me this mountain is chocolate?" He raised an eyebrow.

"Dark chocolate," Wanda corrected. Timmy shot her a look. "What? Can't I have some fun on these wishes?"

After a bit of a short trek, they finally made it up to the top of the mountain. There were lightning strikes. The force of the wind threatened to push them off the mountain, but they managed to hang on to a rock.

"Timmy! Throw the ring in the lava!" Cosmo yelled, his voice barely being heard over the wind.

Timmy let go of the rock. Throw sheer determination and willpower, he managed to not get blown away by the wind, and continued to move forward. He moved closer to the edge, until the next step would have him fall into his fiery doom. He pulled the ring off of his finger. After lightning struck, he threw the ring into the lava as hard as he could. Instantly as it touched the lava, the rain and wind stopped. Then, the clouds parted, revealing a nice, sunny sky. The lava hardened, making it no longer a threat.

"Wow, that was anticlimactic," Timmy commented. He turned and walked to his fairies. "Seriously, how about we have a little more action in my next chosen one mega action trilogy wish?"

"You got it!" Wanda said. With a wave of her wand, the next simulation started.

In Bowser's Castle, nearly everyone was looking around for the source of the voice. And they knew whom the voice belonged to.

Princess Peach.

A brilliant while light shined above everyone in the room. Then, what appeared to be a clear white box with a hexagonal pattern appeared, and trapped in it was Peach; the princess herself looking very distressed.

"Princess Peach?" Violet asked in confusion. "I don't understand…"

The box moved over to the right to make room for another person to seemingly teleport into the room, floating high in the air. The person wore a cloak that started off white, and then changed colors, eventually turning blue as the cloak went down. He wore a top hat, as well as a monocle on his right eye. He wore a cap, along with wielding a wand in his right hand.

"BLECK!" The person said, laughing. "Your princess has been taken…by Count Bleck!"

"You…" Bowser tried to take in this information, but was still confused. "Wait, by WHO?"

Count Bleck did a small bow. "By me…Count Bleck! The chosen executor of the Dark Prognosticus…is Count Bleck! The fine fellow prophesied to come to this dimension… is also Count Bleck!"

"I'll tell you who doesn't make even a little bit of sense…" Bowser started. "Count Bleck!" Bowser, as well as the others, couldn't believe that this entire thing was happening. Prophecy? Dark Prognosticus? What? "Enough! Release Princess Peach right now! We're on a schedule over here!"

"Yeah!" Mario agreed. "Even though… we were on a different schedule than them…" It was funny how both parties initially had different goals, but now they seemed one and the same.

"Count Bleck says NEVER!" Count Bleck yelled. "This princess is integral to fulfilling the prophecies… She will be brought to Castle Bleck and used to destroy all worlds…by Count Bleck!" A sudden chill went through the room.

"Destroy… ALL WORLDS?" Luigi screamed. Violet was feeling the same way. But Mario felt something else. Even though Mario wasn't on good terms with Peach right now, she did not deserve this.

"You…" Mario struggled to get his words out. "You bastard!" Without another moment's thought, Mario leaped into the air, ready to strike Count Bleck, ready to stop whatever plan he might do before it can even start. But when he thought he would land on Count Bleck's head, he suddenly felt a force field knock into him, forcing him harshly to the ground. "What the…" Mario groaned as he got up.

Junior and Kammy tried similar attacks. Kammy quickly fired a magic spell from her wand at the count, and Junior tried to shoot a cannonball from his Klown Kar, but once again the force field activated, knocking their respective attacks back at them. Junior and Kammy couldn't react in time to the sudden counter attack, and they both felt the impact of their attacks, knocking them out.

Before Bowser could even say anything, Count Bleck quickly cast a spell on his wand, aiming it at Mario. The spell was a simple one; it was just a small, purple void that couldn't last long. Unfortunately for Mario the spell lasted long enough that it ended up starting to suck him in, knocking him out.

Luigi quickly pulled Violet away, even though the void had started to dissipate. "Big bro!" Luigi yelled. They just saw Mario there lying on the ground, motionless.

"I-I-Is he going to be alright?" Violet asked with a little bit of fear in her voice.

"I don't know…" Luigi realized. For all they knew, Mario had died…

Bowser hardly knew what to say. Count Bleck had just knocked out 2 of his best minions, and he may have killed Mario. If Bowser wanted to be truly honest, he didn't want Mario dead, he would want to keep him alive just so he could rub it in his face when one of his plans finally worked for good.

Count Bleck put a hand to his chin, as if to signify that he was thinking about something. "These people deserve ridicule… Weaklings cannot face Count Bleck!"

"Why don't you free the Princess?" Luigi questioned, now angered that something could've happened to Mario.

"Yeah!" Violet agreed. "Leave her alone!"

It seemed by now, that even Bowser's team agreed with the people that they usually hate. There was someone more powerful than them right in front of them, so they knew they had a common enemy.

"Bleh heh heh heh…" Count Bleck said, amused by this. "Your princess shall NOT be returned…by Count Bleck. In fact, Bowser, evil king of the Koopas…Count Bleck will take you, too!"

At this, Bowser was shocked. What could Count Bleck need him for? Granted, that would make it easier to get Peach back… But before Bowser or anyone else could say anything, Count Bleck started laughing wildly, spinning his wand around.

A void much bigger than the one earlier emerged. Due to the force of its suction nearly everyone was sucked into it. There was screaming, and desperate escape attempts, but they were all futile as everyone except two people got sucked in. One of those was Count Bleck. Once nearly everyone had gotten sucked in, the void dissipated.

Count Bleck laughed again. "Count Bleck's preparations are now in order! All that remains is for the dimensional void to appear, as foretold in the prophecy…" He laughed more, until he used his magic powers to disappear…

Leaving Mario there lying on the floor…

The next simulation proved to be exciting. It was a game of Quidditch, directly taken from the Harry Potter series. Flying around, Poof, who was colored yellow for the sake of the simulation, was still gnawing at the teething ring. Poof was colored yellow because he was supposed to act as the snitch, which was a ball when once caught, ended the game, and almost always would win for that team.


Timmy was dressed in different clothes again, this time more resembling the main protagonist of the series. He was flying on a broomstick, currently participating in the game.

"I'm chosen one magic wizard boy, Timmy Totter! And I'm playing Quidditch!" Timmy exclaimed. As he said that, Wanda flew up next to him, also in appropriate clothes. Poof flew around him, and Timmy rushed ahead to catch him. And Cosmo was also here, and he was flying his broomstick backwards… for some reason.

"Timmy Totter?" Cosmo asked. "I prefer tator totters!" When he said that, he poofed up a tray of tator totters, but due to him not paying attention, he crashed into a pillar about a second later.

Poof zipped around other pillars, Timmy flying after him. They got to a more open part of the field, and Timmy had a clear shot at catching Poof. He reached his hand out, all the while the fairy baby was giggling.

Wanda flew up to him, distracting him. She opened her mouth and took a bite out of her broomstick, which happened to be made out of a huge pretzel. "You gotta try this pretzel broomstick!" Wanda said, her mouth still full.

"That does it, I'm not making any more wishes before breakfast." Timmy groaned. He was about to resume his goal of catching Poof, but something unexpected happened.

A bolt of lighting zapped Timmy, electrocuting him and leaving him stunned for a moment. Following that was evil laughter.

"Oh no!" Wanda said. "It's the ultimate evil wizard, Moldywart!" Moldywart was this simulation's version of Vicky. Her skin was blue, and powerful electricity danced on her hand.

"It's not moldy, but it is indeed a wart." Moldywart said, flicking her wart. She cackled loudly, and then she unleashed more lighting from her fingertips.

Timmy acted fasted. He ducked to avoid the first round of lightning. Then, he made a sharp right turn to avoid another one, nearly falling off his broomstick. He had to make a left turn this time to avoid the next one, and he got a better grip on his broomstick. He narrowly avoided another stream of lightning, and flew off as fast as he could.

Timmy flew to a pillar and hid behind it as Moldywart was looking for him. Cosmo poofed next to him, oblivious to the danger of the situation.

"Timmy, before you get destroyed, can you wish me up some ketchup for the tots?" Cosmo asked, poofing up new tator tots. Just then, a bolt of lightning flew through part of the pillar, creating a hole in it and destroying the tator tots. Moldywart peeked through the destroyed part of the pillar.

"Here's Moldy!" Moldywart yelled.

Timmy and Cosmo both screamed, and then flew away on their broomsticks. Moldywart started to fly, ready to attack. But she was interrupted by an unexpected voice.


There was a large, hooded figure with a big wand riding a broomstick. He used his wand and zapped Moldywart out of existence. Then, he took off his hood, revealing who he was.


"Stop!" Jorgen yelled as he flew after them.

"Cool! Jorgen got rid of Moldywart." Timmy said, unaware of Jorgen's true intentions. "And now I can catch Poof!" Poof flew past him, and he gave chase.

Jorgen raced toward them and poofed Cosmo and Wanda out of the simulation. Meanwhile, Timmy was catching up to Poof. And this time, Timmy finally caught him.

"Yes!" Timmy exclaimed as he stood on his broomstick. A second later, Jorgen poofed Poof out of the simulation. "Poof?" Timmy looked up at Jorgen. "Hey, what gives? I'm playing a game here!"

"The fun times are over," Jorgen said. "This is not a game. Remain in the shadows. Do not speak your name!" He put his hood back on.

"Uh, you're freaking me out here, dude." Timmy said. Before Timmy could process what Jorgen had said, Jorgen poofed him out of the simulation…

Chapter Text

The only thing Princess Peach could see was darkness. Granted, her eyes were closed, and she couldn't open them yet.

"What happened to me…" Princess Peach asked herself. "What is this place…" She tried to think back to how she got here, but she drew a blank. Her memory failed her. She soon heard a laughing voice.

"Oh, you're awake, Princess!"

"…Huh?" Peach struggled to remember the owner of the voice as her eyes slowly opened. It was Count Bleck. The mere sight of that man jumpstarted some of her memories. Early this morning, she remembered being kidnapped by a man she knew wasn't Bowser, and then getting sent to Bowser's Castle… And then seeing Mario get attacked…

But there were bigger things to worry about. Peach was in a wedding dress and holding flowers for reasons unknown to her. But what was weirder was that Bowser was standing on the other side of the platform, with an eager look on his face… and in a wedding suit… But before Peach could say or do anything, there were collective deafening voices, sounding like a thousand people.


With a laugh, Bowser turned around and raised his arms up. There were stairs that went down to a lower level, and on that level, nearly all of Bowser's minions stood there, cheering for the Koopa King.

"Wh-What's going on here?!" Peach nearly sputtered, confused and worried, not knowing what was going on.

Another person soon teleported into the room, and she floated next to Count Bleck. She was a shorter woman, wearing pointed glasses, having pink hair, and had blue skin. Her name was Nastasia.

"Count!" Nastasia exclaimed. "Yeah, um, 'K, so preparations are complete…"

Count Bleck turned, facing her. "Mmm… Then it shall be begun… by Count Bleck!"

Nastasia nodded in agreement. Then, Count Bleck spoke. "Bowser…" Count Bleck addressed. "Ferocious and fearsome, evil king of the Koopas… Do you take Peach to be your lawfully wedded wife 'til your games be over?"

Though Peach was appalled by this question. Bowser had an entirely different reaction. "Bwa ha ha!" Bowser laughed. "Will I marry Peach? Are you kidding me? The answer's YES!"

Count Bleck turned to face Peach. "Peach… Noble princess, pure of heart… Do you take Bowser to be your lawfully wedded husband 'til your games be over?"

Peach was flabbergasted at his question. Never before had Bowser tried to marry her, but now that it would actually be happening against her will, someone else was trying to do it? But why?

"Now, wait just a second!" Peach yelled, angry. "You will explain to me what is going on…RIGHT NOW!"

Count Bleck laughed before explaining. "Is it not obvious? This is your wedding, Princess!"

"But…why in the WORLD am I marrying Bowser?" Peach questioned. Judging by Bowser's reaction to Count Bleck, it didn't seem that Bowser hired Count Bleck to organize this.

Bowser laughed in amusement. "Hey, no gripes from THIS side of the alter, Bleck old boy! I don't get the details, but the count here has gone to a lot of trouble planning this! Just relax! We'll get married, we'll be in love, and it'll be awesome! Finally!"

Yep, not hired by Bowser. Just who was Count Bleck, and why was he so insisted on getting the two of them married? It was time Peach put a stop to it before whatever plan Count Bleck had could get off the ground.

"No!" Peach yelled, about to not hold back on her words. "And who picked this dress out? It's AWFUL! Take me back to my castle immediately!" She took a breath, ready to continue her rant but she suddenly felt forced to the ground. Nastasia casted a spell, its appearance being several large, red squares surrounding Peach.

"Yeah, um, being rude to the esteemed count is sort of frowned upon, 'K?" Nastasia said. "So, yeah, Princess Peach, I'm gonna need you to answer the count now… Do you, Peach, take Bowser to be your wedded husband 'til your games be over?"

Even though the spell tried to force Peach to say yes, she resisted. She resisted all she could, trying anything to stop this marriage from happening. "Ugh… Nuh… No…"

"Gee… you sure are a fighter." Nastasia commented. "But yeah, no one withstands my super-hypnosis, sorry. 'I do.' Say it now, 'K?" Nastasia put the spell on again but the effect was a lot stronger.

It was nearly impossible for Peach to resist, but she tried all she could. "Oooh… Ooooh oh…" But alas, despite her efforts, the spell could be resisted no longer. "I… I do…"

At those words, a very clear blackness became apparent on the altar. It started off small, but it slowly got bigger. Bowser was only one of few that was surprised at this.


Timmy slowly woke up. It didn't take long for him to remember that Jorgen poofed him out of the simulation. He stood up, standing in front of his own house.

"Cool, a trilogy wish with a twist ending!" Timmy said. "I'll wish up another sequel after school." Timmy dusted his shirt off. "The Chosen One 4: Jorgen's A Jerk!"

He looked around. It seemed to just be a normal day in Dimmsdale, though it was still a little odd that Jorgen booted him out of his wish. Regardless, Timmy walked to the entrance to his home.

"Cosmo? Wanda? Poof?" Timmy called out for his fairies. No response; just a large gust of wind. Timmy shrugged. "Okay, I guess I'll meet up with them later." Timmy opened the front door and walked into his house.

Timmy walked across the living room and over to the kitchen, where Terrance and Tamara were at the table, with Terrance reading a newspaper, and several muffins on the table. Timmy pulled up a chair and sat down.

"Hey dad, mom, can I get some cereal?" Timmy asked. "Something crunchy that's bad for me? Preferably with a toy in the box?"

Terrance looked up from his newspaper, confused. He looked at Timmy, and then at his wife. "Eh, honey, why is a buck-tooth street urchin calling us 'mom and dad' and asking for food?"

Timmy raised an eyebrow at that. His parents weren't that bright, but they had never forgotten that he was their son. "Um, cause I'm your son?"

"But we don't have a son." Tamara stated. "We decided against having children, so we could have more money…" Tamara opened up a cabinet to reveal stacks of money in there, along with a little bit of gold. "Less responsibilities…" There were tons of dirty dishes in the sink. "And weekends free." She pushed aside some of the dishes to show off a calendar.

"Yeah!" Terrance agreed with a laugh. "Having kids would only tie us down and prevent us from doing fun things, like going to tomorrow's big MARF festival!" Terrance turned his newspaper around to show off the two-page ad showing off said festival.

"The middle aged rock festival?" Timmy read aloud.

Terrance and Tamara both got out of their seats, and held invisible guitars. "Cause you're never too old to rock and roll!" They said, starting to 'play' them, only for their backs to suddenly be in pain, causing them to cry out. "Ow! Our backs!"

"Maybe we are too old. To the heating pads!" Terrance said.

"And grab a muffin and let yourself out, street urchin." Tamara added. She and Terrance moved out of the kitchen the best they could, due to their back pain.

"Street urchin? MARF festival?" Timmy asked himself. "Eh, I've had weirder mornings." He shrugged and then grabbed a random muffin for breakfast. But when he grabbed that particular muffin, he stifled a gasp. The muffin he grabbed…

…Was the magic muffin.

There was no explanation as to how or why it was there. The only reason anybody should get that muffin was if a child were to be able to keep his fairies for a year, and Timmy already got the muffin in the past, which lead to one of the worst incidents he had ever experienced.

Mr. Crocker had nearly taken over the world, and Timmy had to use his wits to be able to stop Crocker. But why was it there now? The temptation to just throw it out crossed Timmy's mind, but then he had another thought.

Today was… off… compared to the rest, no matter how weird any others were. Jorgen stopping his wish… His parents not remembering him… and the magic muffin just appearing out of nowhere… Something was off. Timmy took the magic muffin and then he ran up to his room. Or, what would have been his room. It was mostly empty, save for a small backpack and a few other items.

Timmy put the magic muffin into the small, yellow backpack. He looked at the other items. There were a couple pencils, a small package of goldfish, a few dollars, and a couple of juice boxes.

"I wonder why they would have these items here?" Timmy asked himself as he put the items into his backpack. As he headed downstairs, he overheard Terrance and Tamara in the bathroom.

"Man, I sure hope nobody takes our random assortment of items that we have in that room we never use!" Terrance said.

"Sorry mom and dad…" Timmy said as he exited the house and went outside, carrying the backpack. "But I have a school day to get through."

Everything was shaking. Nearly everyone in the wedding chapel was panicking. Amongst the crowd were several knocked out people, and of those people, only two of those woke up, those being Luigi and Violet. At first, they were both confused on what was going on.

"What in the world…?" Luigi wondered.

"What are we doing here?" Violet asked.

At first, the two forgot what happened, but a few seconds passed, and they remembered it all. Count Bleck taking Peach, the confusion in the castle, Mario possibly getting killed… the two froze for a moment. They were away from Bowser's Castle, so they had no idea of knowing if Mario was ok or not.

"Where even are we?" Violet asked.

"I'm not sure…" Luigi said. Great. They don't even know where they were, and Bowser's minions practically surrounded them. But past the stairs… "Huh? Is that…Princess Peach over there?"

Violet's attention got redirected to where Luigi was, and she too saw the Princess. "And that guy above her is… oh no!" She clasped her hands to her mouth. Was Bleck going to try to kill Peach also?

"Come on! We have to get up there!" Luigi said. Violet nodded, and they made a run for the stairs.

At the top of the steps, a black heart emerged from the pedestal. Soon, it was fully exposed and floated in the air. Count Bleck laughed at this.

"Yes, all precisely as written in the Dark Prognosticus!" Count Bleck said. "Already it is unleashed! The Chaos Heart!"

"Oh, yeah, um, congratulations, Count…" Nastasia added.


Bowser, Nastasia, and Count Bleck all turned around to see Luigi and Violet rushing up the stairs; the two stopping at the last step. "And just who are you two? …Asked Count Bleck." Count Bleck asked

"Oh, no! We don't give our names to scoundrels!" Luigi yelled. "Just watch as Luigi punishes you for your badness! HERE I GO!" Violet internally sighed. Luigi was trying to act cool and brave, even though Violet knew he was less than that.

Luigi's act could threaten the chance of Count Bleck's plans being successful. "Yeah, I'm gonna need you to stop right this second, 'K? If you interrupt this now…" Nastasia said.

Luigi ignored her as he jumped on Bowser's head, stunning the koopa king, then jumped on the Chaos Heart, inadvertedly making the black glow brighter, and then landed next to Peach. "Here's where Luigi rescues Princess Peach!" Luigi exclaimed triumphantly. However, he noticed that something wasn't right… "Eh?"

A brilliant white light shone from the Chaos Heart as everything began to shake. Everything flashed a couple times… and then… nearly everyone was gone. The only people left were Count Bleck and Nastasia, with the Chaos Heart.

"Um, yeah, so are you all right, Count?" Nastasia asked.

"Fools… Pointless acts like these will only earn you pain… from Count Bleck!" Count Bleck stated. "Very well. As the Chaos Heart is secured, this ragtag group now lacks use."

"Um, so, yeah, Count… This means you may turn to a new page of dark prophecies…" Nastasia explained.

Count Bleck opened his cape. "Open your mouth, darkness! Consume everything and destroy all worlds, as told in the prophecy! BLECK!"

There were a couple of white flashes. Then, the Chaos Heart glowed brighter than ever…

Time had run away from Timmy, because the school bus was nowhere to be found. Thankfully, his school wasn't too far away. Just as he was entering the building, he tried to call for his three fairies again.

"Cosmo? Wanda? Poof? Where the heck are they?" Timmy wondered aloud. It wasn't like them to just up and disappear like that on him. Since he was late anyway, Timmy took his backpack to class with him. He walked over to the classroom he was supposed to go to. Room 44.

"Well, if I have to face the educational system without magic, I better be prepared," Timmy commented. Thankfully, his locker was close to the classroom; so he walked over to it and unlocked it, getting out a bunch of protective gear and putting it on to make sure he would be safe and sound.

In the classroom, the actual class hadn't started yet. That was mainly because Crocker was too busy writing on the board 'words that begin with F' and all of the words he wrote had something to do with fairies. The students themselves were bored out of their minds, because weren't actually doing anything. Then Timmy entered the room with his protective gear on and his backpack. When he entered, even though he was late, all of the desks were taken up. So he walked over to his best friends, Chester and AJ.

"Hey guys, where's my seat?" Timmy asked. He was expecting his friends to tell him why there were no seats, but he got a completely different reaction instead.

"Wow!" Chester exclaimed, facing AJ. "A new kid who doesn't know we're not cool!"

Timmy raised an eyebrow. "What are you talking about? I know you're not cool!" He took off the protective gear, thinking that would help them recognize him. "And it's me, hello!"

AJ got out of his seat and walked up to Timmy. "Hi, I'm AJ, the class genius, new kid." As if to prove this, he held up a diploma that declared AJ as a genius. "You can have my seat. I'll stand!"

Timmy groaned. First his parents, and now his friends? "Guys, I'm not a-"

"New kid!" Crocker unintentionally finished. He had stopped what he was doing when he noticed the small commotion going on and walked over to Timmy and moved him away from AJ. "Don't you know these kids aren't cool?" Crocker grabbed a megaphone that was on his desk. "AJ, F for standing!" Crocker yelled. AJ ran back to his seat. "Man, I love megaphones!" Crocker added before lowering the megaphone.

"Welcome, new kid!" Crocker said. "Even though you came in late and you have your backpack with you, I'm willing to give you a chance." Crocker turned to face the rest of the class. "Now class, today's assignment is to think of clever ways to destroy the new kid's self esteem."

"But I'm not a new kid!" Timmy yelled. To prove this, he pulled out a crumpled piece of paper from his pocket. "Look! I did your homework assignment on the Big Dipper!"

Crocker took the paper and tried to flatten it out. "Hm, an overachieving suck-up. I like it." Crocker raised the megaphone. "But F!" There was so much force into that yell combined with the megaphone that it had actually caused Timmy to go crashing into the wall, leaving an indent on it. Timmy was dazed for a moment before getting up.

"That's how we roll in the 5th grade!" Crocker said, still speaking through the megaphone. And then he put it down. "And everybody knows there's no such thing as the Big Dipper!"

"The Big Dipper doesn't exist?" Timmy questioned.

"Where'd you move here from? Dumbsville?" AJ jokingly asked. At that, nearly everyone started laughing, including Crocker. The laughter echoed around Timmy. After a couple seconds, it died down.

"I've lived here my whole life, what's wrong with you guys?" Timmy questioned. He ran to Chester and AJ. "I'm your best friend!" He ran to Francis, the school bully. "You beat me up every day!" Then he ran to Trixie, whom he had a crush on. "And I've been in love with you since kindergarten!"

There was a momentary silence as Timmy realized he just said that in front of everyone.

"Awkward." Crocker said into the megaphone.

Timmy walked over to Chester and AJ. "Come on guys, don't you remember just yesterday when we were playing at the park? Huh?" He asked.

"Nope." Chester said. "I was only playing with AJ at the park yesterday."

Timmy groaned out loud. "First my parents and now you guys? What's wrong with everyone? Look at me!" Timmy snatched Crocker's megaphone. "I'm Timmy!" Timmy yelled into the megaphone. "Timmy Turner!"

At those words, the door and part of the wall were blasted open. A huge, menacing robot walked in. "Timmy Turner." The robot's body was huge, and its eyes were glowing red. "Eliminate Timmy Turner."

Chapter Text



There was a faint voice. But Mario didn't know what was going on. His vision was blackness, and he couldn't move.


The unknown voice was soothing. Calming. It almost felt relaxing. Then, another voice. It seemed much more faint than the other one, but he could hardly make out the noise at all. The new voice… seemed welcoming. It was a very different tone than from the other voice, and he couldn't make out any words at all. The other voice seemed to get louder the longer Mario heard it. He could make out a couple of words of it.

" Hey! …. Buddy!"


Mario didn't know what happened, but he just… woke up. That first voice had called out to him, and the other one disappeared. No trace of its existence.

As soon as he woke up, he stood up and looked at his surroundings. He was in Bowser's Castle. After a few seconds, his memories of the previous events came flooding back to him. What happened to everyone?

He looked in a different direction, and there was a small, floating, and rainbow butterfly in front of him. For a few seconds, there was silence.

"Are you awake?" The butterfly asked in concern.

"Hello…" Mario said, apprehensive. "Just… who are you?"

"My name is Tippi… I am what is known as a Pixl… A sort of fairy…" Tippi, the butterfly explained. "Mario… I came to find you…"

In the past, most people who said they needed to "find" Mario almost never had good intentions; so it wasn't a surprise when the plumber moved into a fighting stance, even though he wasn't sure if the butterfly could do anything.

"I am no enemy…" Tippi reassured. "You met Count Bleck…and he captured a princess and an evil king… Is this not so?"

Mario gasped. He remembered more clearly now. While he did know that Peach was kidnapped, he could only guess if the others were too. "Yeah, I'm pretty sure they were." Mario nodded.

"Then that means Count Bleck is even now beginning to form The Void…" Tippi explained. "We haven't much time… You must come with me… Yes, if your friends are to be saved, you must come…"

Mario nodded in agreement. He didn't know what The Void was yet, but it sounded dangerous. Before he could do anything else, he felt himself get whisked away…

The robot glared daggers at Timmy. He was mostly unfazed as he turned to everyone else in the class. "Okay, what the heck is that?" He pointed at the robot.

Chester got out of his seat and ran up to the robot. "Wow! Another new kid!" He exclaimed in excitement.

However, the robot's right arm quick turned into a small laser cannon that was ready to fire. Thinking quickly, Timmy pushed Chester out of the way, knocking both of them to the ground. The ground was charred in the spot where the laser hit. They both quickly got back up and faced the robot.

"Who shoots deadly lasers!" Chester quickly added, now in fear.

"Okay, class. New assignment!" Crocker said in a panic. He ran over to the chalkboard and quickly began writing words down, while saying what he was writing. "Run for your, darn this chalk, life!" After underlining the sentence, he let out a scream.

Crocker and nearly all of the students quickly ran out of the classroom, except for one. Timmy. He had taken to hiding behind the teacher desk. Unfortunately for him, the robot quickly grabbed the desk and crushed it into bits, as if it were sand.

"Eliminate Timmy Turner." The robot said.

"It's official," Timmy said. "This is the weirdest morning ever!" Not wasting another second, Timmy dashed out of the classroom and into the hallway as fast as he could.

"I gotta to get out of here fast!" Timmy said. The robot soon gave chase. Timmy ran as fast as he could down the hallway, with the robot quickly catching up to him.

Then, a turn was coming up. Timmy thankfully was able to make the turn in time. But the robot nearly didn't, as it was flying right into the wall. It managed to stop itself, at the cost of Timmy getting more distance between them. Soon, Timmy saw the entrance to the school building. He forced himself to pick up the pace, even though his backpack was slowing him down a little. It wasn't too long before he made it out of the school.

But he knew he needed another plan. He wouldn't he able to outrun the robot. But from the corner of his eye, he saw something. It was a futuristic scooter that was parked near the bike rack. There wasn't much time left. The robot blasted the double doors of the school open as Timmy hopped onto the vehicle that according to the license plate belonged to AJ.

"Thank you, AJ," Timmy said as the scooter floated up into the air, and then took off. Timmy smiled, thinking it would be enough to outpace the robot. But it wasn't. As he turned around for a moment, he saw the robot flying toward him, slowly getting closer.

"Eliminate Timmy Turner." The robot said again, not taking its eyes off its target.

"I gotta find Cosmo and Wanda so I can wish this robo-dork away!" Timmy yelled. Timmy knew he needed to come up with another plan; this one wasn't going to work either. And he had to come up with another one, and fast.

As he turned a corner, he saw a MARF sign. Timmy quickly thought of his plan, hoping that it would work. He flew up to the MARF sign and then jumped on it, ditching the scooter. He made a pose that looked like the other people on the sign. And it worked. The robot flew right past him. Timmy breathed a sigh of relief. "That was close," His relief didn't last long, as he felt something grab his backpack, and then throw him into an alley.

"Don't eliminate me!" Timmy yelled, instinctively putting his hands in front of his face to protect himself. He couldn't see who was in front of him, due to the large shadow. "I'm not-"

"Timmy Turner!" The voice walked forward, revealing itself to be Jorgen.

Timmy looked up in relief and got up onto his feet. "Jorgen! Man, am I glad to see you. And to see somebody who knows me!" Quickly, Jorgen poofed up a large fairy weapon and aimed it. "And now I'm not so glad," Timmy commented.

"Duck!" Jorgen yelled. Timmy heeded Jorgen's words, and quickly got to the ground. Jorgen fired the weapon, and it ended up hitting the robot, which had been behind Timmy the whole time.

Timmy got back up in a panic. "What is that thing?" Timmy asked, pointing to the robot.

"That is an Eliminator," Jorgen explained. "And I told you not to say your name, which I sort of just did. They have really good hearing!"

The Eliminator got back up, unfazed. Then, its mouth opened, with a red and black vortex that threatened to suck up everything.

"And a really big mouth!" Timmy added. Time seemed to slow as Timmy began to get sucked into the Eliminator. "Help!"

Thankfully, Jorgen thought fast and grabbed onto Timmy's arm with one hand, and a nearby ladder with the other. Everything else started to get sucked into the Eliminator, such as garbage and some other things.

"Hang on!" Jorgen yelled. As if to add to the atmosphere, a lone radio that was left on was playing some fitting music.

"You're listening to K.R.E.P. Creepy music for those creepy alley cliffhangers." The radio said. Jorgen groaned and rolled his eyes at it.

"I hate this station," Jorgen commented. He let go of Timmy's arm for a moment to change the station, only to realize the fatal mistake that he made.

Timmy was screaming as he flew into the vortex, with no way to stop it.

Mario felt himself on a surface. The area around him was unfamiliar to him. Before he could get adjusted to his surroundings, an older man walked up to him.

"Oh ho! Well, well, well… Back so soon, Tippi?" The older man asked. The man had a long beard, with a star point on it. "And who might this be? Red shirt. Blue overalls… And a magnificent 'stache! Tippi, you have truly outdone yourself…"

"He matches the description of the hero in the Light Prognosticus perfectly…" Tippi explained. "And his name is Mario…"

"Yep, that's me," Mario added.

"I welcome you, Mario! Welcome to Flipside!" The man, whose name was Merlon said. "You have come far from the Mushroom Kingdom of your dimension…. Of course, our fair Flipside is in no dimension at all! No! It is BETWEEN dimensions!"

"What? Between dimensions? Can you explain this, please? And what's your name?" Mario asked, slightly confused.

"Tippi will explain dimensions for you soon, Mario," Merlon said. "And my name? Merlon! I am a descendant of the Ancients who created this town. I busy myself studying musty, ancient texts to forestall the end of all worlds!"

"The end of all worlds? What's going on?" Mario questioned, worried.

"Ahh… You want to know about the end of all worlds?" Merlon asked. Mario was about to answer, but Merlon continued. "What's happening, you ask? So Tippi has not yet told you, I gather…"

"Sorry, I wanted to get him here as fast as I could…" Tippi apologized.

"It's alright Tippi, you don't have to apologize. I'll explain it to Mario," Merlon said. "Look above you, Mario. The answer hangs there."

Mario raised an eyebrow and looked up… only to see a huge void in the sky. It was a mix of purple and black, and it looked like it was just… a part of the sky. Like it was etched into it, and there was no way to get rid of it.

"Do you see the gathering darkness in the sky?" Merlon asked.

"Yes!" Mario answered immediately. "What is that thing? How did it get there?"

"It is a hole in the very dimensional fabric of space! Such a strange phenomenon…" Merlon explained. "Is it near or far? None may know. It may appear small now, but it will only grow. And in the end, it will swallow all existence… All worlds, all dimensions… This void was created by our enemy, Count Bleck, who wields the Dark Prognosticus."

Count Bleck… Mario clearly remembered it all now.

" 'A fair and lovely princess… A furious monster king…'" Tippi began. " 'The union of these two will call forth the Chaos Heart, the consumer of worlds… And the Chaos Heart will ravage the sky, and so bring forth The Void.'"

Mario's eyes widened. "So that's why Bleck said he also wanted Bowser…"

"Yes…" Merlon said. "The passage Tippi just quoted is from the Light Prognosticus of my ancestors. The book also says this: 'The Void will swallow all… Naught can stop it…unless the one protected by the dark power is destroyed. The hero with the power of eight Pure Hearts will rise to this task.' …So it is written."

"So… what are Pure Hearts?" Mario asked. "They sound hard to find." He had a hint of worry.

Merlon responded by holding up the Red Pure Heart that he had with him, which was previously hidden away from view. Mario gasped. The red light that shone from it was brilliant, almost seeming to draw him in.

"This is one of the eight Pure Hearts," Merlon explained. "You are surely the hero spoken of in the pages of the Light Prognosticus. You are the only one who can defeat Count Bleck and save all worlds! Mario! Take this and save all worlds from destruction!"

It didn't take long for Mario to make his decision. "I will."

"Excellent! You truly are the hero of the book of legend! My eyes never deceive!" Merlon said. "So…" Merlon cleared his throat. "Mario, our brave hero! Take…THIS!"

Merlon gave the Pure Heart to Mario. Its energy seemed to glow in his hands as he held it, the light shimmering. Then, he pocketed it. Even though it seemed way too big for his pocket, it actually made a snug fit.

"Now, great hero Mario… Your first task awaits," Merlon said. "You must take this Pure Heart… You must place it in the Heart Pillar in this town. Tippi will lead you there. Return to me when you are through with this task!"

"I got it," Mario said.

"This way…" Tippi said. Mario followed Tippi over to a floating red arrow pointing down with a black square around it.

"What's this?" Mario asked.

"It's an elevator… just press the red button…" Tippi explained.

Mario walked closer and pressed the red button. As he did, the two of them were enclosed in a white box that went downward. For a couple moments, there was a bit of silence.

"Sooo… you were going to explain how this town is between dimensions?" Mario asked.

"Oh, yes…" Tippi remembered. "Mario… what in between dimensions means… is that we are basically really close to a couple of other dimensions…"

"Huh?" Mario asked. "I don't really get it."

"Ok, let me explain it this way…" Tippi said. "This town is like a…big bridge to other dimensions… Some dimensions we can access more easily through doors, but…" Tippi hesitated for a moment. "Those doors were only accessible through Pure Hearts…"

"I see," Mario responded. Just then, the elevator had reached a lower floor of Flipside. They went out of the elevator just as it turned into an arrow again.

"The next elevator is this way…" Tippi said, floating over to the right. As Mario followed her, he noted all of the buildings, such as an item shop, a place to rest in, and a place with an image of a crystal ball on it.

"So, what else can you tell me about how this place works?" Mario asked, as he made it to the next elevator and pressed the button, this time with the arrow facing up.

"Well…" Tippi said. "We have made contact with a couple of the dimensions. In both of them, the planet that we made contact with was called, 'earth.'"

"What about the one I'm from?" Mario asked.

"We haven't been there before now. Getting you out of that castle was the first time I was there…" Tippi answered. "In one of the Earths, Merlon said that he worked with someone there for a little while around 30 years ago… but according to Merlon… he just stopped coming after a while."

"What about the other Earth?" Mario asked. The elevator had just stopped, and Tippi led Mario to the left.

"We haven't been there that much, but there is this boy there that's really smart…" Tippi explained. "I could say he's even smarter than that man Merlon worked with… I always forgot his name…"

All this information was a lot to take in for Mario. It seemed interesting how the other dimensions worked, and how this one was a 'bridge' of some sort. Mario soon noticed a tall, white pillar in front of him. It had a grey, heart-shaped hole in it.

"Is this the Heart Pillar?" Mario asked.

"Yes… Now, get close and place the Pure Heart…" Tippi said.

Mario nodded and got the Pure Heart out of his pocket. "How was this even able to fit into my pocket, anyway?" The plumber asked.

"I'm not too entirely sure on that, myself…" Tippi said. "Please… go ahead and put the Pure Heart in…"

Not wanting to waste anymore time, Mario reached up to the hole in the pillar, and put the Pure Heart in there, and then took a couple steps back. It was a perfect fit. At first, nothing happened, and Mario raised an eyebrow. But after a few seconds, the entire pillar glowed red. Then, a huge red beam shot up into the sky, surprising Mario. Then, it stopped. The glow on the pillar remained.

"Well done…" Tippi said. "Now, let's return to Merlon…"

"Alright." Mario said as he nodded. There was a bit of silence as they both went back into the elevator.

"You know… that little spectacle was cool." Mario said.

"I haven't seen anything like it…" Tippi said.

On the way back, Mario still had a few more questions that he hoped Tippi would be able to answer. "You said earlier that it was only possible to get to some dimensions with Pure Hearts. How are you able to get to other ones?"

"Merlon carries a pair of what I believe are called dimensional scissors…" Tippi explained. "Basically, if you know where you're going, you can use them to get to that dimension…"

A pair of dimensional scissor sounded useful to have. Mario made a small mental note to try and see if he could get his own pair at some point.

"Ah, the two of you return!" Merlon said as Mario walked a little closer to him. "Look, a door has appeared! This 'dimensional door' was made to lead the hero to another Pure Heart. Yes, somewhere beyond this door lies one of the seven Pure Hearts… Tippi. You must use your power to help Mario find this Pure Heart and return here."

"Of course…" Tippi responded.

"And Mario… I have something to give you that will aid you on your journey." Merlon said. Merlon grabbed something from his pocket and tossed it over to Mario. Mario nearly dropped it before he got a good grip of it in his hands. What Merlon tossed to Mario appeared to be a small pipe. It was red at the bottom and middle, with red and white stripes near the top.

"What's this?" Mario asked.

"This is a return pipe!" Merlon explained. "With this, you will be able to return to Flipside from anywhere in the universe. Use it whenever you feel you must return in a hurry."

"Thanks." Mario said. Something like the return pipe would be very useful, albeit almost as useful as dimensional scissors. "So, what should I expect when I walk through that door?"

"…The Light Prognosticus foretells that the hero will meet a 'dimensional governor.'" Merlon explained. "And from him, the hero will learn the dimensional technique… I am almost certain this refers to my friend, the Flip Wizard, Bestovius. So go now through this door, and seek out Bestovius."

"Well, let's get going…" Tippi said.

"Alright." Mario nodded. "Let's do this." He and Tippi walked through the large, red door, officially starting their adventure.

Chapter Text

Time slowed as Timmy was getting sucked into the Eliminator. The fear in the air quickly rose.

"Timmy, hang on!" Jorgen yelled in panic.

"To what?" Timmy screamed.

"Good point!" Jorgen responded. Timmy screamed some more, as Jorgen quickly thought of a plan. Jorgen poofed up a whip and quickly grabbed Timmy with it, pushing him to the ground away from the Eliminator. Then, Jorgen grabbed a manhole from the ground. "Now to shut that piehole with a manhole!" Jorgen yelled. He threw the manhole as hard as he could at the Eliminator, briefly knocking it back for a moment.

The Eliminator's eyes narrowed. "Destroy Timmy Turner."

"Although I sympathize with your sentiments, I cannot allow that to happen at this time!" Jorgen said. He quickly poofed up a big motorcycle and hopped on it. "Hop on!" Jorgen yelled. Timmy quickly got on. Jorgen poofed up helmets for the two of them, and revved the motorcycle before driving off. The Eliminator gave chase.

Meanwhile, Terrance and Tamara had been getting prepared to go to MARF. The two of them were dressed in clothes that were usually associated with the 60s. They had already packed their bags and were about to go into a minivan, which they had decorated to fit the occasion. They were walking outside of their house to the van when they saw Timmy and Jorgen getting chased by the Eliminator at a high speed.

"There goes that street urchin!" Tamara commented. "Oh, he's living on the edge!"

"Not as edgy as we're going to be while we're cruising in a MARF machine on our way to the MARF festival!" Terrance responded. He set his bags down and opened them, checking to make sure he brought everything. "Now to make sure we have enough goodies to keep this road trip rocking!" Terrance pointed at the various pills and medicines in the bags. "Stuff for my stomach, stuff for my back, stuff for my throat, and the nasal spray for my deviated septum!" He sprayed the septum in on of his nostrils.

"Let's party!" Tamara cheered, throwing her hands in the air. They began playing invisible guitars again, only for them to hurt their backs again. "Ow! Our backs!" They both cried out in pain. A couple seconds later, Crocker walked up to them, also dressed in appropriate attire for the event, carrying a small bag.

"Hey, fellow MARFers, I'm going to the Middle Aged Rock Festival too!" Crocker said. "I could use a ride, because I think that strange robot at the school destroyed my car."

Terrance and Tamara both got up. Terrance cleared his throat. "Look pal, gas, glasses, or aspirin. Nobody rides for free, not even in strange robot accidents!"

Crocker reached into his bag and pulled out all three of the items Terrance listed. "Let's MARF!" Crocker said.

The three of them cheered as they ran into the MARF machine. Several seconds later, the vehicle got out of the driveway and took off, but it soon abruptly went in reverse, and then went back into the driveway. Tamara ran out of the vehicle in a hurry.

"Middle aged bladder! Potty break!" Tamara said, running into the house.

"Right behind you!" Terrance and Crocker added, also running into the house.

Timmy and Jorgen were speeding down the mostly empty highway as they tried to get away from the Eliminator. Timmy looked behind himself and saw that the Eliminator not only caught up with them, but also was quickly gaining on them.

"He's gaining on us!" Timmy yelled. "Oh, and by the way, why is he chasing us?"

"There will be time for explanations when you are safe!" Jorgen yelled.

Laser cannons appeared on the Eliminator's back. A second later, the Eliminator fired the lasers. Jorgen swerved left and right, trying to avoid them all. But the lasers kept coming, and to make matters worse, there was traffic coming.

Multiple cars honked their horns as Jorgen narrowly avoided them and the lasers at the same time. Soon, the lasers stopped, and the two on the motorcycle were heading right for Dimmsdale Mall. Jorgen revved as he was driving, causing the wand on the end of the motorcycle to glow. Then, a second before they would've crashed into the building, the motorcycle glowed, and then they disappeared, leaving behind a trail of fire.

The Eliminator's eyes widened and it crashed into the building. The shoppers in the mall looked and gasped at the presence of this frightening creature. The Eliminator looked around for a moment, and then grabbed a black coat and sunglasses and put them on. Then, he walked out of the building and summoned two more Eliminators from his vortex.

"Now, eliminate Timmy Turner." The Eliminator, now dubbed The Lead Eliminator due to the jacket and sunglasses demanded. The other two nodded, and then all three of them flew off.

Count Bleck's castle looked small on the outside, but on the inside, it was huge. The Count was currently having a meeting with a couple of his most elite minions. Right beside him was Nastasia. The Dark Prognosticus floated next to Count Bleck. On the other side of the room were O'Chunks and Dimentio.

O'Chunks was… less than bright, although he knew how to get the job done, and was big and burly. Dimentio was small and a lot smarter; he was more sort of a jester.

"The Void has been ripped in the dimension fabric!" Count Bleck announced, starting the meeting. "Yes, Count Bleck is pleased. All has gone as foretold in the Dark Prognosticus. Now it's just a matter of time until all worlds meet their demise!" He then laughed.

"Wow, that's just super, Count!" O'Chunks said, though in a voice that didn't suit him. "Yeah, first you'll erase all these naughty worlds… And then you're going to build a perfect world without war and all that other icky stuff!"

"Yes, yes, no one likes the icky stuff…" Dimentio agreed. "Yes… A perfect world… Sounds magical… Ah ha ha. I can hardly stand the wait."

"Sorry I'm late!"

Quickly, another figure ran into the room, jumping onto one of the platforms. And it was… another O'Chunks? The new O'Chunks was surprised.

"What in blazin' bog rats? How'd I beat meself 'ere? What's goin' on?" The new O'Chunks asked.

The old O'Chunks laughed with a 'mimimi'. "Oh, O'Chunks, you big silly! Didja oversleep or something?" The old O'Chunks wasn't actually O'Chunks. It was another one of Count Bleck's elite minions, Mimi, a shapeshifter. Demonstrating her powers, she transformed into an identical copy of Count Bleck with a puff of black smoke. "I guess it's kinda hard to be on time, though, when you've got muscles instead of brains!" Mimi added.

O'Chunks stomped in frustration. " 'EY! Yeh can't fool me wit' that crazy shapeshiftin' hooliganry! It's Mimi, innit? Show a little respect fer the count! Yeh can't go a'borrowin' 'is face, lass!"

Count Bleck laughed a little. "How delightful, Mimi. Almost as dapper…as Count Bleck!"

Mimi shapeshifted into an exact replica of Peach. "Aw, golly, thanks, Count! With you around, it's nothing but big smiles all the time! Hanging out with the count! That's MY idea of a perfect world!"

"And here I thought Mimi's ideal world was a gem-filled pool with hunky lifeguards…" Dimentio said with a snicker.

Mimi then shapeshifted into a copy of Bowser. "Hey! Dimentio! Have you been reading my diary? I mean… Umm… Never mind."

"Ugh, gems…" Count Bleck muttered, as if he wanted to say more. "Well, after these rotten worlds are ended, Count Bleck will make all your dreams come true! But for that to happen…we must follow all the instructions of the Dark Prognosticus."

"Yeah, about that, just an FYI? I've got an urgent memo for your inbox…" Nastasia said. "Apparently there's been some unapproved interdimensional activity lately. Yeah… I'm thinking it's the hero of the prophecy. We're gonna need an action plan for that guy. And, there's someone interfering with the other part of the plan…"

Count Bleck turned to Nastasia in surprise. "A dimensional interloper! And possibly the hero? You are sure of it, Nastasia? Interesting, mused Count Bleck. We must put an end to this nuisance…"

"Count Bleck!" O'Chunks yelled. "Lemme get this right in me brain. The 'ero Nastasia's goin' on 'bout… He yer enemy? Then yeh gotta cut me loose on 'im! Yeh gotta! I'll give 'im a nice taste o' O'Chunks!"

"Very well, O'Chunks. I'll leave the hero-chunking to you." Count Bleck stated. "Do not fail Count Bleck."

Yeh can count on me, Count!" O'Chunks proudly said. "I'll rain down like a fat thunderstorm! I swear it! Mimi! Dimentio! Yeh should tag along! Yeh could witness a proper chunkin'!" O'Chunks soon went out of the room.

"Mmm… I do enjoy a good chunking…" Dimentio said. "Well, then… I believe I'll head out as well."

Count Bleck laughed. "So, hero… You would defy Count Bleck? Then hurry, for your world's end draws near…"

"Count, what about the other part of the plan?" Nastasia asked with a little bit of worry.

"Oh, don't worry, Nastasia…" Count Bleck said. "Because the new minion we recruited recently will be a big help with that…"

Fairy World was nice and peaceful. There were hardly any noises at all, until Jorgen and Timmy suddenly appeared on Jorgen's motorcycle, a small trail of fire behind them. The motorcycle stopped seconds after they got onto the road.

"That was a close one." Jorgen commented. He got off the motorcycle and poofed the helmets off the two of them. "Now, hang on to me again." Jorgen grabbed Timmy and put him onto his back. "We may or may not have a long road ahead of us, but know one thing. All of the fairies are safe and hidden where the enemy cannot find them."

Mario was called upon once again to save the world… no small task.

Could he prevent Count Bleck from pulling off his sinister plot?

Would Mario reunite with Princess Peach  and the others ? And what about what happened with the birthday party…

A truly interdimensional adventure was about to begin…

As Mario and Tippi went through the door, they were met with a brilliant sight. The grassland seemed to be beautiful, but what was odd was the seemingly random equations floating in the air.

"I feel the Pure Heart. But it's still far from here…" Tippi explained. "Merlon told us to find his friend, Bestovius, to learn that dimensional technique. We'd better go find him…"

"Right." Mario nodded.

"One more thing…" Tippi added. "If you want to learn about anything, just use my power… I know about many things… Like that Goomba over there…"

Mario turned and saw the Goomba Tippi mentioned, walking around a couple yards away.

"That Goomba is pretty weak…" Tippi said. "It can't do much. A jump or two should defeat it…"

'Huh. That's neat.' Mario thought. "Also, quick question. I don't see how I'm going to carry this return pipe with me everywhere." Mario gestured to the pipe in his other hand. "It'd be pretty inconvenient. Can you, by any chance, help with that?"

"Actually, I can…" Tippi said. "I actually have something called hammerspace, where I can store stuff…"

"So… how does hammerspace work?" Mario asked.

"I'm not sure… Just give me the return pipe…" Tippi said.

Mario walked over to Tippi and gave her the return pipe. At first, he thought nothing would happen. But after a second, the pipe just sort of… disappeared. Mario's eyes widened for a moment in surprise, until he realized that it was indeed hammerspace.

Mario had not heard much about hammerspace in the past, but when he did, he heard that only special and select people would have access to it. And he didn't. But now was not the time to dwell on it. He had a mission.

Mario ran forward jumped on the Goomba that Tippi mentioned. After one jump on it, it was defeated. It even dropped a coin. Then Mario got up to a couple of blocks and hit them. A couple of them had coins, but one of them had a Mushroom. Mario hadn't had a Mushroom in a while, so he got up onto the blocks to eat it. But once he touched it, it just sort of absorbed into him.

"What the?" Mario questioned. But soon he felt a strange sensation wash over him. He felt reinvigorated. He hadn't had anything to eat since the party, which was several hours ago. But now after touching the Mushroom he didn't feel hungry or thirsty anymore.

"Well how about that." Mario smiled. If he kept finding Mushrooms like these, this would be a lot easier than he thought. He hopped off that set of bricks and continued on, with Tippi following closely behind.

The next set of bricks was before a very tall structure that seemed to be made of a different kind of brick. He hopped onto a floating block so he could get onto the structure. The structure seemed… off to him. When he looked ahead, he didn't see that much ahead. Just a house, and then nothing else.

"Hmm…" Mario pondered. "That house might belong to Bestovius, but where would we go afterward?"

"I guess we'll find out soon enough…" Tippi responded.

Mario nodded, and then hopped off the structure. When he got to the ground, he noticed a huge gaping hole in it just ahead. He easily jumped over it and landed on a nearby pipe.

Mario scratched his chin. "This pipe may lead somewhere… but we should probably check that house first. Just to see if Bestovius is in there." He looked and saw a nearby creature. "What is that?"

After Tippi's explanation of it being a "Squiglet", Mario quickly defeated it. This time it needed two jumps. Then, after jumping up a small hill, Mario and Tippi finally made it to the house. It looked to be old, had one window, and the door was huge.

Mario soon entered the house with Tippi. But he quickly raised an eyebrow.

"Uhh… this house is empty…" Mario said. "What do we do now?"

"This is not an empty house… There's something in this room. I can feel it…" Tippi said. "I can help you find hidden things…"

About a couple seconds later, Mario saw something suddenly come into view, thanks to Tippi's power. A door that looked like it wasn't there before.

"Let's go inside…" Tippi suggested.

Mario nodded, and then opened the door. When he walked into the room, he saw a strange man which looked to be floating on a cloud.

"Hm?" The man, who was Bestovius asked. "What is this meager mustache that stands before me? And how does it have the audacity to address my multicolored glory? …How did these flimsy whiskers detect my secret door…"

Then Bestovius noticed something about Mario that made him pause for a second. "Wait right there! Red shirt… conspicuous white gloves… jaunty cap… Hah! You are garbed in the rich cloth of the hero of prophecy! You must be the great… HERO …impersonator!"

Mario felt like he wanted to groan out loud. But he decided to facepalm instead. Seriously? Impersonator?

"What a costume! You look like you leaped out of the pages of the Prognosticus!" Bestovius continued.

"Um, you're actually mistaken." Mario explained. "I'm dressed like this because I AM the hero! Merlon told us to find you."

"Merlon? Only his full-bodied beard rivals my hairy magnificence…" Bestovius said. "If Merlon thinks you are the true hero, you probably are. I think… Well, then. As the ancient prophecy foretells… I, Bestovius, will bestow upon you the ancient power of Flipping… For a nominal fee of 10,000 coins!"

Mario and Tippi were both flabbergasted by this. Mario only had 5 coins right now.

"But that's preposterous! You can't charge to teach the hero of the prophecy!" Tippi yelled.

"Why not?" Bestovius asked. "Even the great and splendiferous Bestovius has certain…expenditures. Why should the hero get the world delivered to him on a well-garnished platter? These heroes think they can get away with shaking people down for free skills! A mere 10,000 coins be nothing for a hero of the universe. What do you say?"

Mario fumed. "Well, in case you haven't noticed, I didn't really have ANY time at all to prepare for anything, since Count Bleck just suddenly appeared out of nowhere and started The Void. And why would you assume that I'm rich? Sure, I'm kinda wealthy, but that doesn't mean I go around everywhere showing off with a load of bags!"

Bestovius wasn't sure how to respond to that. "…I see. So be it. I will settle for just taking all the coins in your pocket."

"That's better." Mario said. Mario walked up to Bestovius and gave him his 5 coins.

"Scintillating! Let us begin!" Bestovius said. He floated a little closer to Mario. Then, he began to say stuff that would seem like gibberish. "Flimmidy flammidy floom! Diggidy daggidy dooom! Zibbidy zabbidy zooom! SHABOOM! FLIPPOW!"

For a second, Mario thought Bestovius was just saying random gibberish nonsense. But after a few seconds, it felt as if unexplainable power entered him. It felt weird and good at the same time. Mario didn't know what to think of it. After a few seconds, the feeling ended.

"What was that?" Mario asked.

"I, Bestovius, have granted you the ability to see things that you would never see on your own, otherwise known as the Flipping Ability." Bestovius explained. "This ability is vital if you want to get far on your journey. What do you think? Try it out!"

Mario stood there, confused for a moment. "Uh… how?"

"Just concentrate the energy within you, and then let it out." Bestovius explained. "But beware: use your new ability too long, and you'll start to lose energy."

"I got it." Mario responded. He took a deep breath and closed his eyes. Strange energy washed over him, he wasn't really sure how to describe it. Then, he opened his eyes.

Something was definitely different about the room now… although… it felt the same. It was like he was looking at the room in a whole new perspective. Mario had to concentrate to keep this going, and it took a lot of it to do so. He noticed two items on the floor he didn't before.

One of them was a Shroom Shake. When Mario picked it up, he took a closer look at it. It just looked like it was a normal mushroom, liquefied into a drink. The other item appeared to be a small 8-bit shell. It looked strange, but it could be useful.

Mario suddenly took a sharp intake of breath. He felt pain. It was a small amount, but there was still a little bit. Before he even realized it, he had stopped concentrating and everything felt normal again. The pain was gone.

"Mario, are you okay?" Tippi asked.

"Yeah… I'm fine." Mario breathed. He looked at the two items he held in his hands. "Here, can you hold these for me?"

"I don't mind," Tippi said. Mario gave the items to her, and she stored them in her hammerspace. "Well, let's get going…"

Mario and Tippi went out of Bestovius's room, but before they went out of the house, Mario wanted to try his new power again. This time, it felt a lot easier than before, but he still had to constantly concentrate on it. He saw another item in the room that he would've never seen before. As soon as he grabbed it, he quickly stopped concentrating.

"What's this?" Mario asked, holding the item in his hand. It was a small box with a flame symbol on it.

"I think it's a Fire Burst…" Tippi explained. Mario gave her the item so she could store it in her hammerspace.

After they exited the house, Mario decided to explore the area a little bit with his newfound power. First, he had gone into that pipe from before. There was a chest with a Shroom Shake, and a couple of coins he wouldn't have seen otherwise. After coming back up and a little bit longer of searching the area, Mario and Tippi were back at that brick structure.

"Hm… try using your power here." Tippi said.

Mario nodded, and then started to concentrate. When he opened his eyes, he could see a small opening into the structure. He motioned for Tippi to follow him, and they went into the structure. As soon as Mario stopped concentrating on his power, the structure looked as it did before, except that they were now inside of it, and there was a door in there.

The two of them went through the door. Mario thought this adventure was pretty easy so far. It seemed like the odds would be for him more than before. But would he be able to keep this up?

Mario pushed those thoughts out of his head as he continued on, defeating some enemies.

"You know… that was quite a rant you did to Bestovius back there…" Tippi said.

"Really?" Mario asked, briefly using his power to cross a pipe that was too tall otherwise.

"Yeah… But even though I've only met you recently… it doesn't seem like something you would usually do…" Tippi added.

"Well, I guess it's because I've been under some stress due to everything that's happened recently," Mario said.

"That makes sense… the end of all worlds is very stress worthy…" Tippi said.

"Well, it's not just that…" Mario admitted. "Something else happened right before that which got me thinking…"

"Oh? Like what?" Tippi asked.

"…I'll tell you later." Mario said. Tippi left it at that, and they continued onward.

The rest of the grasslands seemed to go smoothly for the most part. One area reminded Mario of his first adventure in the Mushroom Kingdom. As they continued on, Mario got more coins, defeated more enemies, and got a couple more items, including another Fire Burst and a Turtley Leaf.

Soon enough, they were at the end of the grasslands. Up ahead was an area that looked to be more in a fall state. But while they had already made it a good distance closer to the Pure Heart, Mario and Tippi knew their adventure had only begun…

Chapter Text

In Barstow, Nevada, there was a truck stop that hardly anyone went to. A few people were inside today; two eating sandwiches, until both of them spat out their food in disgust. A waitress was pouring coffee for another customer.

But in the gumball machine, something happened that nobody saw. One second, it was filled with normal gumballs. The next, all of the fairies were in there as gumballs. Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof were at the top.

"Ah! Where are we?" Wanda asked, confused. She looked around. "The last thing I remember is Jorgen pulling us out of Timmy's trilogy wish."

"And the last thing I remember, is you saying the last thing you remember is Jorgen pulling us out of Timmy's trilogy wish!" Cosmo quickly added.

"We're in a gumball machine!" Another gumball fairy, Cupid added in fear.

"I hope we're sugarless!" Another one, Tooth Fairy added.

"Every fairy in Fairy World must be in here!" Cosmo yelled.

"I'm more of a fireball than a gumball." Juandissimo added. "At least we're not at the bottom like Binky."

"Hi guys." The fairy in question, Binky said, down from all the way at the bottom of the gumball machine.

"Well, I don't know why Jorgen put us in here, but we're getting out!" Wanda said with determination. Then she realized something very important. "Oh no! Our wands are gone!"

"And our hands are gone!" Cosmo added.

"But at least we're safe." Tooth Fairy said.

A couple seconds later, they heard a heavy footstep. And then another. More footsteps were heard, each one getting closer to the machine. When all of the fairies looked up, they saw a kid with glasses looking at the gumball machine with a smile on his face.

"Not safe!" Cosmo yelled in fear.

The kid got a quarter out of his pocket and put it into the machine, allowing him to get one of the gumballs. Specifically, the one that was Binky. Binky screamed as the kid picked him up.

"Oh no! He got Binky!" The fairies yelled.

"I don't want to be a gumball!" Binky yelled, as the kid tossed him in his mouth. Binky screamed while the kid was chewing him.

"Ah! The horror!" The fairies yelled. The kid pulled out some more quarters from his pocket. "Ah! The quarters!"

And so ,  Mario came to learn his stupendous new ability.

But there was no time to celebrate ;  Mario still had a Pure Heart to find.

The trail ahead was overrun with savage beasts.

" Follow me." Tippi said, as she flew toward the mountain that loomed ahead. 

The Pure Heart was hidden somewhere on the other side.

Mount Lineland didn't look inviting to Mario and Tippi, due to the enemies that sprinkled the area. Mario looked up and saw the tall mountain ahead.

"I feel that the Pure Heart is beyond this mountain…but it's still far, far away," Tippi said. "Something tells me you'll need to put that new skill of yours to use."

"Well, looks like we have ourselves a mountain to climb." Mario said with a chuckle.

The start of the climb was rough. Mario had to use his flipping power to be able to hit a switch that would let him start the climb. They found a couple of new enemies, such as a Paratroopa and a red Koopa. Soon, they found this strange thing that appeared to be 2D boxes going in circles, sometimes intersecting with each other.

"Is this safe?" Mario asked.

"I'm not sure…" Tippi responded. "Be careful…"

Mario slowly walked up to the rotating rectangle. He looked down for a second, noting that a fall from here might injure him greatly. He noted how the rectangles just kept going in a 360 circle without stopping. Then, he walked up to where it would be in a second.

As soon as it touched him, Mario felt like he was in a 3D box, unlike how this looked. It carried him to where the next one would be, while Tippi followed. As soon as the boxes both touched, he was transferred into the next one, and the pattern continued. That is, until the next one transferred him to a blue box that dropped him to the ground.

Mario looked behind him, and saw that those boxes had been the only way to get further on the mountain. "Well, that was convenient." He smiled, and Tippi chuckled a little.

The trek up the mountain got a little easier. That is, until they came across a hill. The two were looking at it from a block platform, and thought it would be easy. Mario quickly jumped down onto the hill and began to walk up it with his eyes closed.

"Mario, look out!" Tippi suddenly yelled.

Mario opened his eyes. A huge spike ball was heading toward him at a moderate pace. Mario had to think fast. He didn't even know what he was going to do. Acting on a whim, he pushed his arms out and used his power, closing his eyes. He heard a large THUD a couple seconds later.

Thanks to his power, the spike ball had moved past him. Mario thought it was over, but it wasn't more spike balls were coming. Mario soon realized that he had to get past the hill quickly to get past the spike balls.

He began to run, with Tippi following a bit behind him. His power thankfully allowed him to run mostly uninterrupted, with the spike balls being more of something to look at while he ran past them.

When Mario was over halfway up the mountain, he felt pain. The same pain that he felt the first time he used this power. He had never used it this long. But he needed to keep going, despite the pain.

The pain was in his chest area, which made it a bit harder to run. But he tried to ignore it and continued. The pain slowly got more intense. Mario was almost at the top of the hill. As he ran, the plumber looked up and saw that the spike balls fell down from the sky every several seconds.

The pain got worse. It got harder to run. But Mario pushed himself harder. He knew he would make it. With one last burst of energy, he practically jumped to the top of the hill, where a door was. He stopped using his power the instant he hit the ground.

Tippi quickly flew over to him. "Mario! Are you alright? Do you need to stop for a minute?"

Mario sat on the ground, coughing. He clutched his chest. Even after he stopped using his power, the pain in his chest still lingered. Mario groaned. "I really need to get used to this…"

"Do you need to rest?" Tippi asked in concern.

Mario slowly got up. "No, I'm fine… I think." He coughed again. "As long as I don't overexert myself, everything will be fine."

"Alright, I guess…" Tippi said. "Let's keep going…"

Mario opened the door that was next to them, and walked in. He walked forward and saw a house to the left of him in the distance. He saw a pipe up ahead of him.

"I think we're at the top of the mountain…" Tippi said.

"Thankfully." Mario said with a laugh. Tippi chuckled a little too. They saw a town ahead of them, though something was wrong. There was no bridge, and the distance was too long for Mario to jump across. Mario saw a sign and read it.

' Bridge closed! -Red the Bridgemaster'

Mario wondered for a moment. Did the bridgemaster live in the house? Well, there was only one way to find out. Mario entered the pipe, along with Tippi. A few seconds later, they exited out of a pipe that was a lot closer to the house.

As Mario walked closer to the house, he could see that it was a bright red, with two stories, albeit being small. When he got to the door, he knocked for a few seconds. He waited. Nobody answered.

"Is there anyone home?" Mario asked. No response.

"Is the door unlocked?" Tippi asked. Mario tried to open the door. It opened really easily. Mario looked inside the house. It was red, just like the outside. And it was also really small. On the first floor, there wasn't much; just a couple of pots, a table, and a chair. And there were stairs that led to another floor.

Mario looked around for a minute. Then, he swore he heard something. It sounded very faint, and at first he couldn't make out what it was. But then after a few seconds of listening, he finally heard what it was. And it was… crying? It was so faint you'd have to REALLY listen to be able to hear it; it sounded like it was coming from the coming floor.

"Do you hear that?" Mario asked.

"Yes… I wonder what's happening?" Tippi pondered. Mario quickly walked upstairs. He saw a bed and a red switch. He walked over to the switch.

"What's this thing do?" Mario asked. He tried to pull it, but it wouldn't budge a single bit. He tried to pull harder, but nothing happened. Mario placed his hand against the wall as he breathed heavily. "If I try to pull that any more, I'm probably going to break it off."

Mario paused again as he still heard the crying. He had practically looked through the entire house, unless… Mario used his power, even though his chest still hurt a little bit. Now, Mario saw the source of the crying.

There was a man about as tall as he was, crying on the bed. The man had some resemblances to, albeit having a lot of other differences.

"Are you okay?" Mario asked.

The man perked up at hearing Mario's voice. "Hey! HEY! You can see me! This is unbelievable! I've been freaking out here for days, and finally someone sees me!"

"How'd you even end up like this?" Mario asked in concern.

"Well, A couple of mornings ago, I roll out of the wrong side of bed…" The man begun to explain. "…And once I get my coffee, I realize I'm stuck in some freaky parallel dimension! I've been hollering and flailing for days, but nobody could hear me…or even see me."

Mario felt really bad for this guy. It must've awful to live like that for a couple, knowing that no one could see or hear him…

"Just when I was starting to think I'd be here forever, I see you!" The man continued. "You just blipped in here out of thin air! I was thinking, if you can do that, maybe I can hitch a ride back with you?"

"Sure…" Mario said through his pain, trying to hide it. "Just hold on…" Mario stopped using his power, and lo and behold, the man was still next to him. The man was now happy, jumping up and down on the bed.

"WHUH! We did it! I'm back to normal!" The man cheered. "Listen, you really bailed me out there. All that was freaking me out! The name's Red. Nice to meet you!"

"My name's Mario. It's nice to meet you too, Red," Mario said.

"Well, Mario, uh…any way I can repay you?" Red asked.

"Actually, there is one thing…" Tippi answered. "There's a huge chasm outside that we need to cross."

"So you want to cross the chasm, huh? Well, you found yourself the right guy!" Red said. "But hey, I've got to warn you. You know this place is called Impasse Pass, right? I'm only allowed to let a choice few cross the bridge. It's in my job description. I mean, that's why they pay me to stand here. You sure you want to pass?"

"Yes, we really need to pass." Mario answered.

Red pondered for a moment. "Yeah… Well, you did save me from being trapped in a parallel dimension and all… OK! I'm going to ask you a question. Get the right answer, and I'll let you pass. Sound good? Here we go. What's the manliest color in the entire universe? Red or green?"

It didn't really take Mario long at all to decide his answer. In fact, this was going to be easy since they were both wearing this particular color. "Red!"

"Yes! You are SO right!" Red agreed with a smile. "I knew it! You and me, we see eye to eye on fashion. I'll throw the bridge down. Hang on a sec." Red jumped off his bed and pulled down the lever easily, even though earlier for Mario it felt like it was stuck in place. "All right, you should be good to go. You take 'er easy!"

"Thank you." Mario said. He walked downstairs and left the house, and walked back to the pipe. Once on the other side of the pipe, he saw the new bridge that had formed. It was nothing special; just a plain brown bridge. It was surprisingly sturdy as he walked along it.

The town ahead was nothing too special, just some buildings along with a shop and a rest area.

"Maybe we should buy some items for the journey ahead…" Tippi suggested.

"That sounds like a good idea." Mario agreed. Mario already had a fair amount of coins, almost 100. In the shop, he bought a Shroom Shake, a Long Last Shake, and a Fire Burst. Mario decided to save some of his money in case they find another shop that sells other items, or maybe if there were a store later that would be cheaper.

The next building Mario went into was someone's house. He didn't spend long in here, so he went to the next one. The next one, though, seemed… off. There was a curtain hanging around a side of a part of the building, and there looked to be a pipe on the other side.

"I wonder what's in there…" Tippi said.

"Me too." Mario responded. He hoisted himself up onto the curtain so he could get over it and onto the pipe. After going down the pipe, though… they were now in an underground area. And ahead of them, there were Thwomps. Several of them; all pounding the ground ahead. There would be no way to get past them; they may as well turn back.

"Wait… I feel something ahead…" Tippi said.

"Is it the Pure Heart?" Mario asked. "Is this where it's at?"

"No, it's not the Pure Heart, it's… something else…" Tippi answered.

Whatever's past that area must be important… so how were they going to get through? Mario had an idea. He used his flipping power and looked at the Thwomps again. They now appeared to be off to the side, where they could safely get past them.

After the two got past the Thwomps, Mario relaxed himself. He walked through the door that was ahead. In the next room, Tippi had to reveal the door for Mario so he could get through. As soon as they went through the door for the next room, it locked behind them.

"What the?" Mario questioned, looking at the door. "How'd this happen?" He tried to pull the bars off the door, but to no avail.

"I don't think that's going to work…" Tippi said. "Maybe something useful will be in that chest…" Mario walked over to the huge chest in front of him and opened it.

"Sweet freedom!" A voice suddenly said. Another pixl floated out of the cage, this one looking like a hand. "Wait a moment… If I have been set free, the legendary hero must have done it! I expressed concern when the Ancients stuffed me in that chest 1,500 years ago… But it seems my fears were quite unfounded. The hero has finally arrived!"

"Who are you? And are you a Pixl?" Mario asked.

"Why…YES! I am indeed a Pixl! My name is…Thoreau!" Thoreau explained. "The butterfly is a Pixl as well? But she doesn't look familiar… Are you a newer model?"

"I… Well, I… Ummm…" Tippi hesitated, trying to find an answer.

"No matter! Details do bore me!" Thoreau said. "What is important is the fact that I have waited AGES to lend my skill to the hero. And, glorious day, here you are! Do take me with you… You simply must!"

"Sure, I guess," Mario said with a shrug.

"You will? Smashing!" Thoreau yelled. He spun around Mario several times before floating over near where Tippi was. "Just remember that I can grasp objects and enemies and hurl them with gusto. Why not take a moment to get acquainted with my useful talent? You will need to use my ability to get out of this room. Ready, steady, GO!"

After taking a moment to figure it out, Mario used Thoreau to grab a nearby block. He saw on the ceiling there was a switch. He jumped up and hit the switch with the block. After he did that, the bars around the door disappeared. Mario smiled. This new ally would sure prove to be useful.

After Mario and the two pixls made it back outside, they decided to look through the other buildings. The next building he went into was a small house with an old man inside of it.

"Whoozit? I'm the elder around here, so watch it!" The old man suddenly said. "What do you want? Get off my rug!"

Mario was a little taken aback by the sudden yelling. "We were just passing through, and then we were going to leave town,"

"Leaving town?" The old man questioned. "Nothing but desert past here. There's treasure, but you'll get grit in your grunders. That's what here is for. Yold Town. Keeps the treasure safe from YOU. Watch it! Can't let you pass. See this little guy in my pocket? He's got something to tell you. Know what he says? WATCH IT! So give it up."

"Actually, I kind of do have leave town." Mario firmly stated. "And that's because I'm the hero."

"Whuzzat? Whizzit? You're the hero?" The old man questioned. "Dumplings! If you were, you'd have a Pixl that's shaped like a hand! If you had one, I might believe you're the hero. But you don't… WATCH IT!"

"The Pixl is literally floating right next to me." Mario deadpanned, tired of this guy. He gestured to Thoreau.

"Whuzzit? You do?" The old man asked. " 'Course you do! You're the hero! Knew it all along! I'll give that Green feller a call. He'll let you across."

"Green feller? Who's that?" Mario asked. But he got no answer, because the old man got out his cell phone and dialed a number. The phone started to ring and the old man put it up to his ear.

"Hello? Green? It's me, Watchitt." The old man Watchitt said. There was a pause. "I said Watchitt… WATCH IT! WATCH IT! I said Watchitt, not botch it! This hero feller wants to get across the bridge. Yes, I told him about the grit." Another pause. "Ah… Yes. Let's keep that between us. Just let the mustache guy through."

Watchitt got off the phone, returning his attention to Mario. "Just get off my rug and go talk to Green at the edge of town…WATCH IT!" Watchitt paused to take a breath. "Well, looks like I can finally retire, 'cause my job is done! When you're in that desert, keep a watchful eye out for some ruins. The treasure is there. Nasty beasts too. SO WATCH IT!"

"Uh, thank you." Mario said. He then left the house, which happened to be the last one in town. As he walked along past Yold Town, he saw another house in the distance. And like Red's house, there was a pipe that would lead them closer to the entrance.

"I guess that's where Green lives…" Tippi said. Mario walked over to the pipe and went in it, getting transported closer to Green's house. Once he got to the house, he walked in, not even bothering to knock on the door. He briefly looked around at the green house. It was similar to Red's house, though some things were different. He walked upstairs and he saw Green standing on his bed, patiently waiting for the hero.

"Hello," Mario greeted.

"I got a call from Old Man Watchitt. So you're that hero guy then?" Green asked.

"Yes, that's me. I'm Mario." Mario answered.

"Right on!" Green responded. "I'll put the bridge across for you straightaway!" Green walked over to the lever beside his bed, pulling it down. "There you go! Mind if I ask you a question? Red or green; what's better?"

Mario was unsure how to answer. On one hand, he could be honest and say red, which would probably make Green upset. But he could say green, but that would be a lie. And he's lied enough already…

"Uh, red?" Mario nervously answered. At this, Green's face became red.

"Get out of here with your ugly red cap!" Green yelled. Mario backed up a little and put his hands in front of his face in self-defense. "I said GET OUT!" Green practically screamed once more.

At that, Mario ran out of the house as fast he could, with the two pixls following behind him. He ran back to the pipe and quickly got out the other side. When he did, he saw a new bridge had formed.

This new bridge was green. It certainly had more flair to it than the previous one they had crossed. Mario didn't hesitate to walk along this bridge. He wanted to get out of this town as soon as possible. And now that he was out of this town, he would be walking to the desert.

Timmy and Jorgen were search the entirety of Fairy World for a while, and the both of them were getting tired. And soon enough, they realized they were just back where they started, right where Jorgen had left the motorcycle.

"We're back here again?!" Timmy questioned in frustration.

"Ugh, you've got to be kidding me." Jorgen groaned.

"What are we looking for, anyway?" Timmy asked, hopping off of Jorgen.

Jorgen poofed up a map of Fairy World, with an arrow pointing to a cave. "It is the Cave of Destiny, where all of your questions will be answered." He explained.

Timmy looked up, and saw the cave in question. "You mean like that cave up there?" The cave was tall, with the entrance being dozens of feet in the air. There was a sign on top of the entrance that had on it, 'CAVE OF DESTINY FREE WI-FI'

Jorgen looked up at the cave. "Man, why can I never find that place?" He asked to himself out loud.

Soon, Timmy and Jorgen had arrived at the Cave of Destiny. There were several bats flying around, as well as skeletons and rats.

"The Cave of Destiny is creepy." Timmy commented, with a bat flying over him.

"Oh, these are just from last year's Halloween party." Jorgen explained, picking up a skeleton. "I think. We also rent out the cave for weddings and bar mitzvahs."

"Were there any huge turtles at last year's Halloween party?" Timmy asked, the question being seemingly random.

"No. I think." Jorgen answered. "Why?"

"Well, there's one right here." Timmy answered. Jorgen walked over to where Timmy was. There was a creature there that looked to be a mix of a turtle and a dragon, and if it were to stand up, it would be about as tall as Timmy. There was a huge bib on his belly, where drawn on it was a angry mouth.

"Hm, this is strange." Jorgen said. "I was just here recently, and this wasn't here before."

Timmy and Jorgen were both unsure of what to do now.

Junior wasn't sure what had happened after he had gotten knocked out by his own weapon. He had been knocked out, so he couldn't really do much of anything. But after a little while, he had woken up, but he still felt very tired. What he saw, though, was strange. He was now in a huge white room, with a ton of other minions. 

With the little energy he had at the moment, he looked up. He saw a set of stairs leading up to another platform. Was… was that his dad up there? And the princess he wanted to marry.

His dad always said that he wanted to kidnap Peach so he can have a mother again. But he didn't want her… Junior wanted to see his actual mom. He never got to see her, at all. Not once in his life, and when he would try to ask his dad, the father koopa would avoid the subject.

Also up there was… that man from before. Apparently a wedding was going on right now. And then the princess was knocked down, and then a black heart appeared…

He looked next to him and saw Kammy out cold. With the little energy he had, he shook her a little bit to try to wake her up. Nothing happened. When he looked up, he saw Luigi and Violet running up the stairs, presumably to put a stop to what was going on. 

Violet… he had some contempt for Violet. Ever since she had shown up, she had proven to be someone not to underestimate. Most of the Koopa family hated her, since they were mainly based in fire powers, and Violet had ice powers. She could even make weapons out of her ice, which was annoying. 

Junior saw Luigi jump on his dad, on the black heart, and then land next to the Princess… and then everything started shaking… and that was the last thing he saw…

Junior quickly arose with a start. For a couple seconds, his vision was blurry, and he couldn't really make out anything clearly. But when it became clear, he immediately knew something was off.

He was not in the same huge white room where he was previously. He was in this, big brown cave. And there were two humans standing in front of him. One of them was a boy with a pink hat and shirt, with blue pants and shoes, and he was carrying a yellow backpack. The other human was very tall. He carried a huge wand and had a small crown on his head. He had big muscles, and was wearing an army shirt.

These two human were looking at him with a strange expression. Junior looked at the kid. Then at the tall man. He quickly stood up and took a defensive stance. "Who are you? Where am I? I-I'm not afraid of you!"

The tall man sighed. "One, I'm Jorgen and he's Timmy, and two, you're in the Cave of Destiny."

Well, that his questions were answered. But the second answer didn't make sense. Cave of Destiny? What? There was an awkward silence between them for a moment before Jorgen broke the silence.

"And now, I'm going to ask you some questions." Jorgen said firmly. "One, how did you end up here, and two, where are you from?"

"Why should I have to tell you? Why can't you just let me leave?" Junior yelled.

The kid, Timmy, was starting to get fed up with this. "Maybe, because on Earth, you don't normally see giant turtles walking around!" Timmy yelled.

Junior felt a little offended by this. "I'm not a turtle! I'm a-"

"Can you please just answer the questions already!?" Jorgen yelled. His wand glowed a little. In fear, Junior backed against the wall, which he was already close too.

Junior weighed his options for a moment. On one hand, he could try to escape, but that would probably end in disaster, due to the man's large size. On the other hand, he could stay here and… well, he didn't know what would happen. To be honest, Junior didn't know a lot about what was even going on right now. This all felt weird to him.

He didn't know where he was, he hardly knew who these people were, and…he had no idea what happened to his dad. Or anyone for that matter. For now, he just had to go along with what was happening. And if things got bad, he would be able to think of something…


Junior took a deep breath, and finally started to answer Jorgen's questions.

"I… I don't really know how I got here. And as for where I'm from, well, I'm from somewhere called the Mushroom Kingdom…" Junior explained.

"You don't know how you got here?" Timmy asked. "What about where you were before you got here?"

"Well… I'm pretty sure I was at this wedding between my dad and a princess she wanted to marry." Junior started to explain. "The wedding had been arranged by this man named Count Bleck, and at some point this weird black heart started to appear. A-And then the heart flashed and everything went white, and then I woke up here…"

Junior paused to take a breath. "A-And I'm not sure what happened to anyone there. Not my dad, not the princess, not Kammy, not anyone…" A tear formed in one of Junior's eyes. He looked down to try to avoid anyone seeing it.

"I can help you look for your dad." Timmy said. Junior looked up at him. He was a little more at ease now.

"Really?" Junior asked.

"Yeah. Maybe we'll find him in the midst of whatever's going on here." Timmy said. "Just at least try to help me with whatever I have to do, okay?" Timmy reached out his hand for a handshake.

Junior looked at the outstretched hand for a moment before meeting the handshake with his own hand. "Deal." The two shook hands. After a few seconds, they parted.

"Tight grip." Timmy commented.

Junior laughed at the comment, his ego being stroked a little. "Thanks."

Chapter Text

With a bold quiver of his magnificent mustache, Mario let loose a hearty sneeze.

A single grain of sand had flown along the warm wind and tickled the hero's nose.

It wasn't long before Mario and Tippi found the source of the sand: the Yold Desert.

Along the endless, sunbaked expanse, Mario and Tippi continued their search…

"Didn't Old Man Watchitt say something about there being some ruins around here?" Tippi asked as they walked through the desert.

"Yeah. We should probably find it." Mario said.

And so, they set off through the desert. Mario's chest pain was practically nonexistent by now, which was a relief to him. The journey so far was easy. They enemies Mario had to face were the standard Squigs and Squiglets. Soon, they came across a red tree, the only one in the area. After looking at it for a brief moment, the two moved on.

Soon, he came across some Bald Clefts. They had too much defense for the plumber to defeat, so he moved on. Another new enemy was a Boomboxer. When defeated, it dropped a Volt Shroom.

"This could come in handy." Mario commented. They continued along the path, and they went through a door that was ahead.

The new area didn't really last for too long. Around the end of it, there was a strange looking rock with an arrow pointing south on it. Mario frowned. Were they really going to be stuck again? And already?

Mario looked at the arrow and where it was pointing. It seemed weird that it would point south, when there was nothing there… unless… Mario used his power. There was an entire new path he didn't see before, in the direction the arrow was pointing. He headed down the path, with the two pixls floating behind him. Surely this path would lead him to the ruins.

This path seemed to be narrow, though. And yet it led to another dead end. There was a big statue ahead, and it had some writing on it. It was...

Yold Signpost:

Find ye the tall red palm tree of fortune, and leapeth under its branches 10 times.

"Red palm tree… like the one we saw earlier?" Tippi asked.

"I'm pretty sure," Mario answered in agreement. "I wonder what'll happen after I jump on it?" After a little while, they eventually got back to the tree. Mario looked at the tall, red tree before jumping under it ten times, though he looked a bit silly by doing do.

After all ten jumps, a door had appeared. Would this finally be where they had to go? Mario walked through the door. After exploring a little bit on the other side, he ran into some more boxes like the ones on the mountain.

He hit a couple of blocks, one of them containing a strange mushroom. After about a second, it had actually come to life, and Mario had to defeat it. There were some Spiky Goombas that he couldn't defeat, due to not having a hammer.

Mario wished that he had brought his hammer with him. But it wasn't his fault; he didn't know that any of this was going to happen.

Soon, he had to use Thoreau again to hit a switch, which would allow more of those blocks to spin, allowing him to move on. Soon enough, he came across another door. Once he went through it, he heard a large, booming voice.

"GRAH-GROOGLY!" The voice yelled. "So yer the lad stickin' his 'stachy in me boss's business!" Mario looked around a moment for the source of the voice. Then, the owner jumped down to the ground. It was O'Chunks, one of Count Bleck's minions.

"Yeh shouldn't 'ave crossed the count! Now I'm gonna 'ave teh get chunky on yeh!" O'Chunks continued.

"You… You're one of Count Bleck's thugs, aren't you?" Tippi questioned.

O'Chunks did a pose where he slightly raised one hand above his head, and extended his other arm while pointing his finger to the sky. "O'Chunks is me name! An' I'm no common thug, lass. I thug for the count o' counts, Count Bleck hisself! One word from me Blecky-boy, an' I come teh make yeh feel some hammage!"

"Hammage?" Mario asked, a little confused.

O'Chunks stopped posing. "Ehhh… Make that damage!" O'Chunks was too, confused now. But after a moment he stomped the sand a couple of times, alerting Mario to go into a fighting stance. "Whatever, then! Not that it matters a pinch o' stew in a sandstorm. Yer a goner!"

"Do you even know what Count Bleck is trying to do…?" Tippi asked.

"DEH!" O'Chunks quickly answered. "Me boy's usin' powers an' whatnot teh bring back some order teh this 'ere world! An enemy o' Bleck be an enemy o' mine! They all get chunked!"

"This O'Chunks is a lot scarier than the other enemies we've faced so far…" Tippi commented.

"Don't worry Tippi, I'll be able to handle this…" Mario reassured.

"Enough is enough already!" O'Chunks yelled, raising his fists into the air and shaking them. "It's time teh thunder down from on high an' deliver a beatin' o' the ages! CHUNK ON IT!"

The fight begun as O'Chunks charged at Mario. The plumber had quick enough reflexes to jump in the air. He landed on O'Chunks's head, getting a direct hit. Mario bounced off of O'Chunks's head, landing on the ground. He quickly turned to face O'Chunks again.

This time, O'Chunks took a different approach. He jumped in the air as high as he could, his shadow being cast over Mario. Gravity soon took effect, and Mario narrowly got out of the way before O'Chunks hit the ground.

Seeing his chance, Mario quickly ran over to O'Chunks and prepared to jump on him. But O'Chunks had other plans. As soon as Mario was close, O'Chunks grabbed onto his feet.

Before Mario could register what just happened, O'Chunks turned and slammed Mario to the ground on his belly. Mario felt pain all over. Then O'Chunks slammed Mario onto his back.

O'Chunks then threw Mario as hard as he could, causing him to tumble across the ground. Mario stood up, coughing. That only lasted a moment, though, as O'Chunks quickly ran up and punched Mario in the chest, causing him to fall to the ground.

Mario's eyes shut as he clutched his chest as tight as he could, trying to ride out the pain. When he opened his eyes for a moment, he O'Chunks doing a dance to celebrate. Mario needed a way to have an advantage over O'Chunks. Then, he thought of it. He needed to do what he had done… but how?

He thought of the solution a moment later. Since he wouldn't he able to throw O'Chunks on his own, he would have to use his new pixl, Thoreau. The pixl in question floated over to Mario.

After a few seconds, O'Chunks stopped dancing. Mario stood up the best he could and motioned his arm out, prompting Thoreau to lash forward. At the same time, O'Chunks had charged forward.

Thoreau caught O'Chunks, holding him above Mario. Mario smirked as he threw O'Chunks to the ground as hard as he could. O'Chunks grumbled as he swiped at Mario, trying to grab him, but Mario jumped backwards, landing on his hands before propelling himself back into the air to land on his feet.

O'Chunks charged at Mario, but he quickly sidestepped away. O'Chunks tried again, but Mario sidestepped again. O'Chunks took a different approach this time. He jumped into the air again, ready to slam into Mario. But again, Mario dodged as O'Chunks fell onto the ground.

Mario quickly jumped on him again, afterward flipping in the air before landing. O'Chunks tried to get up, but failed. "I'M CHUNKED!" O'Chunks said, as he rested on one knee.

"Me chunks…yeh failed me!" O'Chunks grumbled. "I got pummeled and yeh barely sweat yer brow. 'Ey… What kind o' strange li'l man are yeh?"

"Well, the "strange li'l man", is none other than me, Mario!" Mario explained. "And I am sweating a lot, unlike what you said."

"Maria, ey?" O'Chunks asked, mishearing Mario's name. "'Tis an odd name, yeh, but yeh can bet yer bebby I'll remember that!"

"Uhh… It's Mario, not Maria." Mario corrected.

O'Chunks finally got up, and stomped on the ground a few times. "Yeh remember this, Maria! If yeh didn't look like such a wee toddler, I wouldn't 'ave taken it so easy on yeh! But 'ey, I have to give it up for your effort, so let's call it a tie. Yeh better get some chunks o' yer own for next time, though, 'ey! And while yer at it, why don't yeh wax that bonny 'stache o' yours, Maria! 'Til we meet again, 'ey! CHUNKS AWAY!" Somehow, O'Chunks flew into the air, using his… farts to fly.

"Ew…" Tippi commented.

"That kinda reminds me of Wario in a way I would not like to think about." Mario said. "Did you understand a word of what he said?"

"No…" Tippi answered. "Are you all right, Mario?"

"Yeah. I'm fine." Mario answered, though he cringed as he felt sudden pain. He got one of his Shroom Shakes and drank it all in several gulps. The taste of it was refreshing, almost like the taste of a Mushroom if it had been through a blender. After finishing the drink, Mario tossed it aside. "Well, let's get a move on."

Now that O'Chunks was out of the way, Mario could finally journey closer to the Pure Heart. They went through another door, and found a split path with some rising and lowering platforms. The small group took this path, and found themselves at another door.

When they went through the door, the found another statue similar to the one from earlier. On it, was: Percheth ye atop the distant platform of blue and stomp your right foot on it two times to make something of interest of happen.

There was a dead end after that statue, so Mario decided to go on the other path. The other path's platforms moved from side to side, instead of up and down. And the end of the other path was a door, which Mario went through.

After that door was a long walkway with many pillars. At the end was a blue platform. Heeding the instructions from the earlier statue, Mario stomped on the blue platform twice with his right foot.

Ahead, there was what looked to be an entrance to a dungeon, but a statue of a dragon's head blocked it off. But after Mario stomped on the blue platform twice, the ground began to shake. The dragonhead statue slowly rose, revealing an entrance to the dungeon, which Mario promptly entered.

Now that Timmy and Junior were now… partners… it was finally time to change the subject.

"Ok, where was I?" Timmy asked himself. "Oh yeah, what's going on?" Junior was also going to ask the same question.

"Now that you two have stopped talking, I can finally tell you." Jorgen answered. "Look at these pretty pictures." With his wand, Jorgen made a lot of dust from a part of the wall go away, revealing some pictures. "Or as we call them in Fairy World, the cave prophecy."

"What? The… cave prophecy?" Junior asked, walking a little closer to the pictures. "That sounds ridiculous."

"No, you're not saying it right. Go with the echo." Jorgen corrected. "The cave prophecy. And, these pictures are anything BUT ridiculous!"

"So, can you explain the cave prophecy?" Timmy asked.

Jorgen cleared his throat, preparing himself to say the explanation. "In ancient fairy times, a fairy's main job was to fight, not frolic. They battled a mysterious enemy called the-"

"Wait!" Junior suddenly interrupted. "I don't exactly know what a fairy is so can you tell me?"

"I'll tell you later." Timmy quickly said.

Jorgen narrowed his eyes at Junior for a moment, but then continued. "They battled a mysterious enemy called the Darkness."

In the past, many fairy soldiers were blasting the Darkness with the magic from their wands. But that didn't phase the Darkness. 

"And it's agents of destruction, the Eliminators!"

The Eliminators landed on Fairy World. The fairies tried to fight them, but there were too many, even though they blasted a few away. Once the Eliminators got close enough, they sucked up the fairies into the vortexes.

"And, the fairy warriors were victorious only when they combined their wand powers and neutralized the Darkness with its natural enemy, light."

The fairies that were left all got together as close to the Darkness as they could, and all emitted powerful beams of light at the Darkness. The Darkness had let out a screech, and then flew off. Because of their victory, the fairies all cheered and had a huge party.

"But, our ancient ancestors feared that this ancient foe would come back!"

There were four fairies all dressed in cloaks, hiding their faces. The colors of the cloaks were teal, pink, purple, and blue.

"So, they sent millions of our strongest soldiers into space to illuminate it!"

Countless fairies flew into space, with each star that someone would see actually being a wand.

"So that should the Darkness ever return, we will have a shield of protection, not unlike today's underarm deodorants!" Jorgen's finally finished.

"Amazing!" Timmy commented. "Do you have any popcorn?" Right now, he was feeling a little hungry, and wanted to save his other rations in his backpack for later. Jorgen had poofed up a popcorn stand.

"Small, medium, or large?" Jorgen asked.

"Surprise me." Timmy answered. Soon, Jorgen gave him a bag of popcorn that was a medium. Timmy looked at Junior. "Don't you want any?"

"No. I'm not hungry right now." Junior answered. "So… if I'm getting this right, ALL of the stars, every single one in the sky, is just a… fairy warrior watching out for the Darkness?"

"Exactly. They are our first warning system." Jorgen answered. He paused to eat a little popcorn. "But last night, our deepest outpost, the Big Dipper Brigade just disappeared!"

Timmy then had a realization, remembering something that happened earlier. "The Big Dipper!" He dropped his popcorn. "That's why Crocker said it didn't exist!"

Junior started to laugh. "Dipper?" He laughed out loud at saying the name. "Boy, I'd feel sorry for anyone that has to live with that name!" Junior laughed a little more, leading Jorgen and Timmy to stare at him.

"Can we please move on now?" Jorgen questioned. Junior said nothing. "Thank you." Jorgen turned to Timmy. "I had to wipe away all memory of its existence so no one would freak out. I also had to wipe away any memory of you so no one would say your name and give away your location!"

"So this is great and all but how does it affect me?" Timmy asked, pointing to himself.

"I'm not finished." Jorgen said. He clapped twice, and more drawings were revealed. "Our ancestors then hid an all-powerful magic wand that could destroy the Darkness should it ever return. And, to protect this white wand from falling into the wrong hands, they decided only a Chosen One could possess it and unlock its true powers."

"So where's the wand?" Junior asked, his tone being a bit demanding.

"No one knows." Jorgen said. "But it's said that this cryptic message reveals its location." He used a bit of magic to reveal a hidden message, the light from the magic forcing Timmy and Junior to shield their eyes. "So far, no one has been able to solve this ancient riddle."

Timmy read the riddle aloud. "The wand is hidden in a rock and sealed with a kiss… what does that mean?"

"You tell me, because the Chosen One is you, Timmy Turner!" Jorgen yelled, pointing to a picture on the wall that bared a resemblance to Timmy, though many differences were immediately apparent.

"What?" Timmy yelled in surprise and shock.

"Wait, so this kid is supposed to stop an ancient evil that took magic warriors to stop?" Junior asked, not believing this one bit. "And that picture doesn't look like him at all!"

"Are you kidding me?" Jorgen asked. "Look at the picture! Big hat, buckteeth, initials TT, and I'm not the only one who knows it!" Jorgen shone his wand on a part of the floor, revealing footsteps on it. Footsteps from an Eliminator.

"The Eliminators were here? They know I'm the Chosen One?" Timmy asked as he walked closer to the footsteps. "And you just said my name out loud!"

"And it echoed a bit too, didn't it?" Jorgen added.

Junior looked at the footprints and scoffed. "I could easily take out one of those… Eliminators."

"One of them literally crushed a table, dude." Timmy said.

"And?" Junior asked expectantly. But before Timmy could answer, something suddenly broke through the wall, causing some debris to fly into the cave.

The Lead Eliminator was standing there, unmoving. "Eliminate Timmy Turner." It spoke with its cold, unnerving voice.

"Man, that thing looks terrifying!" Timmy commented. The addition of the glasses and jacket had made the Eliminator all the more menacing.

Two more Eliminators showed up. Junior growled at them for a moment, but stopped when they summoned their vortexes.

"Get us out of here!" Timmy practically screamed. The force of the vortexes was slowly starting to pull them in. Jorgen whistled for his motorcycle. The pink and white motorcycle drove up to them a few seconds later.

The three of them got on, Junior hesitating for a moment. Jorgen poofed up helmets for the three of them, and they drove off. The Eliminators gave chase a second later.

Chapter Text

Somehow, Mario had found the strength to cross the desert's sweltering dunes.

Ahead was a sprawling complex of ruins rising out of the sand. 

Thankful for the shade, Mario and Tippi ventured inside deeper inside.

They were the very ruins Old Man Watchitt had warned them about.

What dangers lurked in the shady corridors ahead?

"Mario, I can feel it calling… The Pure Heart is nearby…" Tippi explained. "But, wait… I sense something else emanating from the sand dunes. Be careful now, Mario… Something else is waiting for us ahead…"

"Alright," Mario responded, as they walked a little further into the Yold Ruins. It was a little quiet as Mario walked down a set of long stairs to a door. After going through the door, he found himself in another hallway with a much shorter ceiling.

After only walking a few steps, he narrowly avoided a Buzzy Beetle that fell from the ceiling. The Buzzy Beetle landed in front of him, and then he jumped on it, forcing it to go into its shell. Mario walked past the downed Buzzy Beetle, jumping over a small dip with quicksand in it.

"Um, Mario…" Tippi pondered.

"What is it, Tippi?" Mario asked. He hit a block that had a Mushroom in it, while trying to avoid a rotating fire bar.

"Well, earlier… you said there was something stressing you out other than all of this. Can you tell me what it is?" Tippi asked.

Mario stopped for a moment as he reached another door. "Uh… yeah… I'll go ahead and tell you…"

"It's okay, take your time." Tippi reassured.

Mario took in a breath as he prepared himself for the rather lengthy explanation, as we went through the next room, trying to avoid more rotating fire bars. "Well, yesterday morning I woke up like normal, except that the people I live with were gone."

"Who are they?" Tippi asked.

"Oh, they're my twin brother Luigi, and his girlfriend Violet." Mario answered. "And when I got to Peach's Castle wondering where everyone was. And it turned out to be my birthday…"

"Oh, that's nice." Tippi said.

"Do you see the problem?" Mario asked, as he had to pass by a door for now due to it being locked, and went into another door instead. This room had a couple Spiny Tromps in it that Mario had to avoid.

Tippi thought for a moment about what Mario just said. Twin brothers… birthday… and then it clicked. "Wait… wouldn't twin brothers have their birthday parties at the same time?"

"That's right. But he wasn't anywhere at the party. They didn't even acknowledge that it was also his birthday." Mario explained. "I found Luigi shopping at a grocery store and he didn't even know about the party. When we went back to the party, all signs of it being a birthday party were gone. There… there is just so much I don't know, a-and I… just want to know why. I want to know why Peach would go to such lengths to just…" Mario stopped talking, as he couldn't bring himself to say anymore. A single tear escaped his eye but he quickly wiped it away.

"…" Tippi wasn't sure what to say. All of this info was almost too much to take in.

"Let's just try to find the Pure Heart." Mario said, relieving some of the tension. He had gotten a key from a chest, which he assumed would go into the locked door he saw earlier. After going back to said door and unlocking it, he found a large room.

"I…I'm sure we'll get all of this figured out." Tippi said slowly.

"Hopefully." Mario said. He went through the room and found there was another door that was locked. Above it was a platform with an unlocked door. Mario went into that door, and there was a room with a Squiglet and a switch that was too high for Mario to reach.

Mario put two and two together, and used Thoreau to throw the Squiglet so it would hit the switch. Mario waited for a moment, thinking a key would appear.

"Let's check around…" Tippi suggested. They went out the door and searched the previous room. Mario found a small enclosure that now had the key in it. It was too small for Mario to crawl into, so he had to use Thoreau again to get the key.

After unlocking the next door and going through, the next room had a floating door, which was strange. Mario used Tippi's power to reveal a platform that was not seen previously.

After going through this door, Mario found himself in another room with many smaller fire bars. Mario searched around the room, and he found a key, though it was in a floating box that he had no way of accessing, without using his power.

It had slowly started to become easier for Mario to use his power, even though he hasn't had to use it for a while. He used his power for only a moment just to get the key, to conserve energy for later.

After unlocking the next door, Mario was in a very tall room with a spring. He tentatively jumped on the spring, getting propelled high in the air, barely making it to the next floor. He noted that there was another floating door.

"That was close,Mario thought. He walked around the new floor, but found nothing of interest. "What should we do?" Mario asked. There was no other door in sight, and not even a key either.

"Hmm… try using your power again…" Tippi suggested.

Mario used his power again and found a ladder that he quickly climbed up; thankfully it wasn't that long. After stopping his power, he found a small, blue switch on the floor ahead. In front of it were a lot of closed panels. After Mario jumped on the switch, the ground shook.

Several yards behind him, there was a large, red switch on a higher platform that just came into view. And in front of him, the panels on the wall opened. Tons of Spiny Tromps poured out of the panels. Mario uttered a swear under his breath and quickly ran to the higher platform, jumping on the switch. After he did that, a hole in the floor opened around where the blue switch used to be. The Spiny Tromps fell into the hole; all of them falling in after half a minute.

Mario walked over to the hole in the floor. He could see the previous floor, where all of the Spiny Tromps landed… giving him something to stand on to get to that door. Mario walked back down the ladder and carefully walked on the now-still Spiny Tromps to get to the door.

The next room was huge, though there was almost nothing in it. What he could see was only a couple of red exclamation blocks. He decided to hit them in a random order, that being the third, first, fourth, and then the second. All of the blocks disappeared after he hit the last one. And then, blue stairs rose out of the floor, the stairs nearly reaching the ceiling.

It didn't take too long for Mario to climb the steps. At the top was a block with a blue mushroom in it, which ended up healing him more than a red one would, and a pipe. Mario took the pipe, and he found himself back in the desert. After only taking a few steps forward, there was a loud, booming voice.


Mario jumped a little at this voice. After several seconds, there was shaking in the ground. Then, a gargantuan red dragon quickly emerged from the sand, looking similar to the one he had encountered on one of his previous adventures. The dragon's bottom jaw was white, though it's underside was blue. The dragon shrieked for a moment.


The dragon's eyes blinked, and then turned into little circles with a small circles traveling around the circles. Mario stood apprehensively in front of Tippi, waiting for something to happen. This dragon was way bigger than the one he faced before, and even then that dragon was hard to take down.

The dragon continued to scan Mario's form, internally searching for what he has detected. Then, he found it, and his eyes went back to normal. To the dragon, it wasn't long at all, but for Mario, it felt like time was moving much slower than usual.


Mario wasn't sure to think of this. On one hand, the dragon could be benevolent, and had been waiting here for the hero, or on the other hand, the dragon could have been waiting here to try to kill the hero. Whatever the case was, Mario was sure that the Pure Heart was near.


"Uh… sorry for being late?" Mario nervously apologized, hoping nothing would happen.


"Ah ha ha. It won't be that easy, oh no…" An unknown voice said, making its presence known.

"WHO SPEAKS?" Fracktail roared. Mario and Tippi also wondered who that was.

One second, nothing was there. And the next, Dimentio seemingly teleported in the sky out of nowhere, floating near Fracktail. Dimentio turned to face Mario, smiling. "So very nice to meet you… and your mustache. I am Count Bleck's master of dimensions, the pleaser of crowds… I am…Dimentio! Remember the name well…"

"I know you." Tippi realized. "You're that…" Tippi paused, unsure of what to say.

Dimentio laughed. "It would be so very DULL if your journey ended so easily… Instead, it ends with…magic!" Dimentio turned to face Fracktail. With a wave of his hand, he struck lightning on a green disc that was on a pole on Fracktail's head, short-circuiting it.

Fracktail let out a large sound, similar to one if a computer had an error. Dimentio smiled. "Yes, much better… Now you and this robotic guardian can spend some quality time… Yes, quality snack time! When he snacks…on you! For you…ARE the snack! Ciao!" Dimentio left, disappearing the same way he came.

Everyone was silent for a moment. "What did he just…" Mario pondered.


Fracktail paused for a moment, looking as if his mind was frazzled. Then… "BEEBLEBLIP! C: run query identification C: run insult generator C: results: go away yeti-lip! CRTL ALT DEL!" Fracktail screeched, going into the ground for a moment before lifting his entire body out of the sand and flying in the air, making a large gust of wind and sand to fly everywhere.

Mario coughed and tried to get the sand out his mouth, his vision being obscured. When he finally looked up, he saw Fracktail flying in the air.

Fracktail swooped down low, and opened his mouth. Mario tried to get away, but the dragon followed him wherever he went. But it turned out that Fracktail was just teasing him, as the dragon swooped over Mario, going into the distance.

Mario looked at Fracktail, and assumed for a moment that Fracktail had flown off. But he was wrong. Fracktail did a 540, aiming himself straight at Mario.

Mario knew that if he would try to run from this spot, Fracktail would quickly readjust himself. Mario quickly came to think of another plan. It was risky, but it might work. Instead of running this time, Mario stood in place while Fracktail flew toward him, the dragon steadily getting closer every second.

Fracktail dipped down, about to go partially into the sand. Mario jumped away at the last second before he would've been devoured in Fracktail's mouth. Fracktail flew back up, and turned 90 degrees to the right. He did something similar to last time, where he teased Mario again, this time going in a different direction than before.

Fracktail was going to charge straight at them again, doing a 360. At this point, Mario realized that he wasn't really doing much to stop the dragon. He was just narrowly avoiding his attacks. Mario didn't have much time to think of a plan due to Fracktail quickly flying in.

But Mario noticed the angle the dragon was at. It would just be high enough for him to jump on… Fracktail started to close the distance going low, so Mario sidestepped and watched as Fracktail flew right past where he was previously standing.

Mario didn't have much time. He quickly ran to Fracktail as fast as he could and tried to jump on his quickly moving body. Mario landed, but a second later he nearly slipped. Thankfully, Mario managed to get a grip on the dragon's long body.

Mario looked down for a moment, though he regretted it. The ground was quickly getting farther and farther away, so he hurried to climb onto Fracktail's body. The dragon's body had leveled out, so Mario was pretty balanced on it.

But the wind had threatened to push Mario back, back off of Fracktail's body and certainly to what would be his doom. Mario trudged forward, trying to find a way to defeat the dragon.

He remembered that thing Dimentio had damaged earlier. It seemed like Fracktail was more of a robotic dragon than a real one. So what would happen if he damaged it more? The robot would eventually give out under the damage. Mario carefully ran closer to Fracktail's head.

But as he got closer, these small, purple and white things somehow popped out of Fracktail's body that reminded him of Cataquacks. Mario nearly jumped back a little due to them appearing so suddenly, but he remained his composure.

Mario looked at the spinning orb high on Fracktail's head. It was way too tall for him to even consider trying to jump to it on his own. He needed another idea. But a second later, he got it. Those little things on Fracktail (which he called Frackles) could be thrown by Thoreau.

Mario used Thoreau to grab one of the Frackles, and then threw it up at the green orb. As it hit, a small spark of electricity was let out. Would this keep working? Only one way to find out. Mario threw another Frackle at the orb. And then another one.

Fracktail screeched. The dragon started to do an upward 360. As he did, Mario unwillingly started to slide down the dragon. Mario tried to grab on, but he couldn't. It was like there was nothing to grab on to. But as he quickly slid further down the dragon, he saw Fracktail's head come into view again. He needed to time this just right.

At the last second, Mario jumped off of Fracktail and the grabbed the pole on his head, quickly sliding down it. Mario repeated the previous process, throwing the Frackles onto the orb. And after three more hits, something different happened. Fracktail screeched for several seconds.


Fracktail soon powered down, his eyes going black. He started to slowly dip down, sending himself on a crash course to the ground. Mario started to panic at this. In order to try to remain a sense of control over his descent, he grabbed onto the pole that was on Fracktail's head. The rest of his body flew behind him as his hat flew off from the speed of the descent.

The ground came closer to Mario at an alarming rate, with his heart racing and eyes closed. Then, Fracktail's lifeless body crashed onto the ground, the head landing first. As this happened, Mario's grip on the pole has inevitably slipped, with him tumbling across the dragon's body and then falling a short distance to the ground.

Mario lied there for a moment, exhausted for a moment at what had just happened. Then, Tippi flew up to him, carrying his hat.

"Mario! Are you okay?" Tippi practically yelled, in worry about the event that had just transpired.

Mario was lying there still for a moment, trying to take several deep breaths. Then, he sat up with a groan, taking his hat and putting it back on. "Yeah… I'm fine." Mario said. He stood up. "Now let's go get that Pure Heart."

After a little bit of searching, they found a door that led to a blue room. It had a lot of pillars, and long stairs that led slightly downward. After reaching the end of the room, Mario looked around, a bit puzzled.

"Is the Pure Heart supposed to be here?" Mario asked. He waited for a moment, expecting something to happen. He was about to walk away, until he saw a woman appear, floating near the ceiling. The woman appeared to be more of a spirit than actually alive, due to her being slightly transparent.

"I am a dormant soul… I have waited long to give you the Pure Heart." The woman explained. "Yes, I have been waiting for 1,500 years."

The woman floated a little closer to Mario. "Your presence here must mean that all worlds have begun to collapse."

"Yes, they have, in fact… That's why we're here…" Tippi said.

"Who exactly are you?" Mario asked.

"I am Merlumina. Before I give you the Pure Heart, you and I must speak. Listen well, hero." The woman, Merlumina said.

"Alright." Mario responded as he nodded his head.

"Long, long ago…my people built a civilization hailed as a beacon of culture." The woman said. "Sadly, despite our power, there was one thing we were powerless to stop: The Dark Prognosticus. Nobody knows who authored the dark book. It foretold the events of the future. On the last page, it was written that a chaotic power would devour the world. We knew it had to be stopped. Our greatest minds devised a grand plan to stop the tragedy before it happened. We needed something with the pure essence of love to confront this chaos. Researchers set to work… and they created the Purity Heart. We divided the Purity Heart into eight pieces and hid them in different dimensions. We hid them for their own protection, waiting for the day the hero would arrive. Everything was going as planned. Or so it seemed… But the wheels of destiny began to spin wildly out of control."

As the explanation went on, Mario found it harder and harder to stay awake. Most of this was very important information, but it was still hard to not fall asleep. But he tried his hardest not to.

"It began with a very small incident…" The woman continued. "At that time, I was young and quite beautiful… It started the day I met two very fetching young men. And, you see, my life set sail toward a maelstrom of love. You see, I asked one out, but… However… It was…well, you know… Basically…it… and then I said… And he said… and then….."

"…And THAT is why we hope the Purity Heart will have the power to defeat chaos." The woman's explanation was finished. "To save all worlds, we must find the eight Pure Hearts that form the Purity Heart. And that is all I have to say on the matter." When she looked at Mario, she saw that both he and Tippi had fallen asleep, with Tippi sleeping on Mario's hat. "Were you listening carefully?"

Mario suddenly jolted awake along with Tippi, and he quickly nodded.

"Excellent… I did tell the short version, so I wasn't sure if you would fully understand." The woman said. "It is up to you to find the Pure Hearts, for they are our last and only hope. Go forth, hero, and save the worlds… We are all depending on you!"

Then, the woman revealed a bright-orange Pure Heart, and gave it to Mario. It floated above his head, shining brightly. Thoreau danced a little, as it floated down closer into Mario's grasp. It shined brighter than ever before, going within Mario like the red one had.

Before disappearing, Merlumina had entrusted Mario to save every world.

She had waited 1,500 years to deliver the message to the legendary hero.

With the second Pure Heart in hand, Mario was in great spirits.

But six Pure Hearts still remained to be found, and the journey had just begun.

" I think we'd better return back to Flipside…" Tippi said with a flutter.

The weight of every world's fate once again rested on Mario's shoulders…

In Castle Bleck, O'Chunks had just returned, and Count Bleck and Nastasia were also in the room.

"Yeah, so… I guess the hero went ahead and stomped you and sent you back here?" Nastasia asked O'Chunks, though she already knew the answer.

O'Chunks was panting a little, and was resting on one knee. "Yeh gotta forgive me, Count! I've failed yeh! I've never felt less chunky in me life!"

After that, Count Bleck laughed a little. "So our hero is real… Yes… A force to be reckoned with…" He turned to Nastasia. "Nastasia, the prophecy. Consult it and learn where the hero will go next… We will lay a devious trap for him and bring him to his very KNEES!" Count Bleck laughed again.

Nastasia nodded. "Yeah, um, I already sent Mimi to a site picked for that purpose…"

"This pleases Count Bleck. Excellent work, Nastasia." Count Bleck smiled. "I have granted Mimi powers potent enough to ensure that she will obliterate this hero. Yes, he will be helpless against her." Count Bleck opened his cape. "I depart! Alert Count Bleck when this "hero" is no more!" He laughed some more before leaving, leaving Nastasia and O'Chunks there alone.

"Yeah, I'll fire off a memo on that…but for now, we have another item on the agenda…" Nastasia said. "O'Chunks, you got a sec? Yeah, so some minions in the Bowser organization are still resisting assimilation? So I'm heading out to squash the resistance…and while I'm gone I want you to stay here. Yeah… you just sit tight and think about your recent job performance, 'K?"

O'Chunks was surprised at this, but before he could say anything Nastasia headed out. He looked around, and saw that he was alone. "Aw… I… Gah, this really tweaks me chin hairs!"

Wait… what was going on? What just happened? Where was she? How did she get here? The last thing she remembered was just hanging out with Mario casually…

Wait… there was a guy. And he-

Princess Peach instantly woke up, remembering the recent events that happened with Count Bleck. He kidnapped her… forced her into a fake marriage with Bowser… it was just horrible.

"What? How did I end up here?" Peach asked herself. She was alone. Seemingly all around her was a large, purple void. And she seemed to be at the outside of a castle. How…


Luigi had done something, most likely to try to save her.

"LUIGI? BOWSER? VIOLET? ANYBODY THERE?" Peach called out. But none of them were there.

"Uh…no. You're the only one of the wedding party left standing, it looks like." A sudden voice behind her said. She jumped a little, and turned around. She saw a Hammer Bro and a Koopa walking up to her. She never thought in her life she would be relieved at seeing Bowser's troops.

"So, you finally woke up, huh, Princess?" The Hammer Bro asked.

"Oh, you guys!" Peach said. "Are you all right?"

"Yeah, but who knows what happened. That was one CRAZY wedding!" The Koopa said. "We can't even find His Groomness! You remember… King Bowser? Oh… And that guy with the mustache and his girlfriend… I think he had a green tux on or something? Yeah, erm…Luigi and Violet, those are the guys. We don't know where they ended up either."

"Thing is, most of us minions got all brainwashed by that Bleck guy's assistant." The Hammer Bro explained. "Yeah, everybody's half-nuts! It's not safe here! We've gotta clear this area, NOW!" The Hammer Bro whispered something to the Koopa, which made him jump in surprise. "Private Koopa here will escort you, OK? You guys make a break for it."

"But what about you?" Peach asked in concern.

"What am I gonna do? I'll TELL you what I'm gonna do! I'm gonna go help my men!" The Hammer Bro said. "King Bowser would burn me to a crisp if I left 'em! Leave no Koopa behind! Good luck out there, Princess! HAIL BOWSER!" He turned to leave.

"Farewell…" Peach said sadly.

The Koopa walked closer to her. "OK, lady, we've gotta EVAC this zone! Let's roll!" The Koopa led Peach to a door, which they promptly went through. In the next room, they were on a high platform, which was above a confrontation that was going on.

"You. Give up. There is no hope for escape."

Peach and the Koopa looked down to see the Hammer Bro stopped by two brainwashed Koopas.

"All hail the glorious count! Do not resist… Submit to his rule. You will love it." One of the brainwashed Koopas said.

"What's this insubordination?" The Hammer Bro questioned. "Johnson! I am your CAPTAIN! Drop and give me twenty!"

"Yeah, you know what? I'm gonna have to tell you that your orders mean nothing." Nastasia said, walking up to the three of them. "See, they've already sworn eternal allegiance to Count Bleck, 'K? And now you need to, so I'll just go ahead and pencil you in for a 10 o'clock brainwashing."

Angered, the Hammer Bro prepared for attack. "You just messed with the wrong Koopa! I serve Bowser! You tell this 'count'-"

Before the Hammer Bro could say anything else, Nastasia suddenly brainwashed him, making his allegiance go to Count Bleck. And to show that, his eyes were red. "HAIL BLECK!" He said.

"Yeah there, isn't that better?" Nastasia asked. "So listen, there are still a few problem minions that haven't sworn allegiance… You, be a lamb and round them up for me… 'K? Thanks."

"YES MA'AM!" The Hammer Bro yelled. He walked off with the other two Koopas. After a moment, Nastasia walked off.

Back above, Peach and the Koopa were both worried.

"Oh, man, this is going downhill fast! Did you SEE that? They even broke the captain!" The Koopa said. "Look, lady, if they find us, it is GAME OVER! We've gotta clear this area, STAT!"

Peach nodded. Although the height of this platform looked like a dangerous jump, Peach realized that she had her trusty parasol and used it to float down to the lower level. Thankfully, there was a door they could go through which wasn't locked, so they went through it as quick as they could.

In the next room, there was a set of stairs. After walking down the stairs, there was another door that they also went through. They then went through a hallway that was outside of the castle on a ledge. And after walking through the hallway… they were met with a dead end.

If they were to try to walk any further, well, they wouldn't be able to because of the path suddenly ending, which would lead to a fatal fall.

"No! Dead end!" The Koopa said.

"Well, staying here won't do us any good… Let's turn around and keep looking." Peach suggested.

"Oh, turn back? Yeah…no. Your friend there had it right. This is your dead end."

Peach and the Koopa turned around to see Nastasia with several brainwashed minions, including the Hammer Bro.

"Wh-Who ARE you, anyway?" Peach questioned.

A second later, the Koopa ran in front of Peach to protect her. "Find cover, lady! I'm trained to handle scum like this!" A second later, though, Nastasia brainwashed the Koopa, and it showed with the new sunglasses the Koopa sported. "ALL HAIL COUNT BLECK!"

"Wow, Princess, you sure are lucky. I thought the wedding explosion finished you…" Nastasia commented. "Yeah, but this is the end of the road…and your luck runs out…right here. It's time you came on over and got with the program… Come and serve the count!"

Peach felt disgusted that Nastasia would even try to offer something like that. "Never!"

"Yeah, that's great and all, but my hypno-powers kinda say otherwise." Nastasia responded. "Just sit tight a sec, K? 'Cause I've just got to brainwash you real quick."

Peach was unsure of what to do, except for one thing. She would not let Nastasia do that mind trick on her again. She would resist harder than before, and try anything not to succumb to it.

But it didn't have to come to that. Before Nastasia could do anything, a box quickly surrounded Peach. Then, the box quickly closed in around her and she disappeared, leaving behind a surprised and worried Nastasia.

"What? That wasn't on my schedule! Where'd she go?" Nastasia asked. But there was no answer. "Well, that's really not a deal breaker… Our prophecy-fulfillment plan is running smoothly. We have no need for her. Yeah, and it doesn't matter where she runs, since all worlds are about to fall…


I remember that day well… The room was warm. The whole place was at peace. 

" Ugh… Uuugh…"

" You're awake at last?"

" Where…am I? Is this… a human's home? Bleccch!"

" Don't wiggle like that. I found you at the cliff base. You took quite a fall."

" You're a human, correct? I don't…repulse you? I am of the Tribe of Darkness…"

" Why would that matter? Anyone with a heart would not ignore an injured soul!"

That was the day our paths crossed…

That day… That was the day our tragedy was set in motion.

Chapter Text

The motorcycle drove down the cave wall and onto the road. The Eliminators followed behind, shooting red lasers at the vehicle. Jorgen managed to swerve out of the way of all of them, some of the dodges more narrow than others.

Several seconds later, two more Eliminators jumped in front of them. Jorgen acted fast, and managed to swerve to the right. Those other two Eliminators also gave chase. Jorgen drove the motorcycle faster, hoping to get away from the Eliminators.

"We're gonna crash into the wall!" Junior yelled.

"Don't worry." Jorgen said, distracting himself as closed his eyes for a moment. "We will vanish before we- GAH!" The motorcycle crashed straight into the building. The three of them flew into some boxes, causing them to fall. Luckily, there were enough boxes for them to hide behind so that they wouldn't be seen.

Moments later, the Eliminators arrived. The Lead Eliminator led the pack, as he scanned around for any signs of the Chosen One. They happened to walk by the boxes that Timmy, Jorgen, and Junior were hiding behind.

"Listen, as the Chosen One, I choose not to be the Chosen One." Timmy whispered, as to not get the Eliminators' attention. "I've never been chosen for anything, not kickball, not lab partner, why? Because I'm a bad choice."

"The cave prophecy does not lie." Jorgen whispered back. "Don't worry, I have a plan."

"Oh, thank goodness." Timmy said in relief as he stood up.

"If it's you they want, it's you they'll get." Jorgen said, looking at the Eliminators.

"What?" Timmy said, albeit a little too loud. "That's a horrible plan."

Junior put a finger over his mouth, and 'shushed' Timmy, though he did that a bit too loud. "The big guy said to be quiet."

"Gee, well maybe you shouldn't shush so loud, or else maybe that will attract them!" Timmy whisper-shouted.

"Quit the arguing." Jorgen deadpanned. He grabbed a small wand a poofed himself so he would look like Timmy.

"Plan's getting better," Timmy said with a hint of relief in his voice.

"Good luck in stopping the Darkness, Timmy Turner." Jorgen said. "And good luck to you to getting back to wherever you came from." He said to Junior. "You were a pain in my butt, but…" Timmy stared blankly at Jorgen. "Well, that's all I got." Jorgen began to run out of the hiding place.

"Where are you going?" Timmy asked.

Jorgen stopped running at the last box before the Eliminators would see him. "For you to go on, the Darkness must believe you have been eliminated. Remember, the wand is hidden in a rock and sealed with a kiss." Timmy just stared.

Jorgen walked out of the hiding place. "Hello, I am Timmy Turner." He waved his arms to get the Eliminators' attention. "Look how stupid I am." The Eliminators took notice and walked toward whom they thought was Timmy; all the while the disguised Jorgen was making sounds to emphasize his point.

The Lead Eliminator sucked Jorgen into his vortex, along with several of the Eliminators, leaving two of them there. "Finally. We have the Chosen One." The Lead Eliminator stated, as the other two walked to him.

"Can we stay?" One of the other Eliminators asked. "We saw some cool shops on Main Street."

"Yeah, no one said you were the boss of us, and-" The other Eliminator was cut off as the Lead Eliminator sucked them in also, and then somehow sucked himself in…

Minutes passed before Timmy looked up tentatively to see if the coast was clear. It was. "Okay, you can come out now!" Timmy called out as he walked out from behind the boxes.

"Finally." Junior said as he walked out of the hiding place. "And now you can take me home."

"What?" Timmy was taken aback.

"You said you would help me get home." Junior answered. "Don't you remember?"

"Yes, I do remember." Timmy responded. "And I don't know where your home is!"

"It's in the Mushroom Kingdom!" Junior yelled.

"That doesn't help!" Timmy yelled back. He then groaned. "Let's… let's just get off Fairy World." He walked out of the warehouse, with Junior following behind him.

"There might be a way back to my home here." Junior said, still not relenting. "If we look around, I'm sure-"

Timmy groaned out loud, interrupting Junior. "Sure, why not. Let's waste time looking around while the Eliminators could potentially found out that I wasn't really eliminated, and then they start chasing me again!" The sarcasm in this statement was layered on thick.

Junior didn't know how to respond to that. Instead, he looked at the houses ahead. "Hey, didn't you say you were going to tell me how all this fairy stuff works?"

"Ok, why not." Timmy said, just wanting to get this over with. "So, fairies basically can grant wishes, only to kids though. Bu-"

"Any wish?" Junior interrupted.

"I was about to say that there are certain rules you have to follow, all listed in Da Rules." Timmy explained. "Such as no interfering with true love, no using it to win in a competition, no wishing for Christmas to be every day, and other stuff like that."

After Timmy's explanation, Junior thought for a moment, before deciding on what he would say. "Ooh, I want a fairy! How can I get one?"

"Is your life miserable?" Timmy asked.

"No!" Junior harshly answered. "My dad and all of my siblings treat me very well!"

"Well, then you won't get any fairies, because I only got fairies because I had to deal with a babysitter that tries to torture me!" Timmy yelled.

"Well I'm sorry! I didn't know! I was just curious!" Junior reasoned, also yelling.

"Well, your curiousness isn't going to help stop the Darkness, nor is it going to help you find your dad!" Timmy yelled. He paused. "Look! We're alone! How are we even going to do anything!"

"We?" Junior questioned.

"Yes, we! You said you would help me stop the Darkness!" Timmy answered. He looked to the sky, and then realized something. "Wait a minute… all of those stars in the sky are fairy warriors ready to stop the Darkness! Yes! We're not alone!"

But not a moment later, the stars began to disappear in groups, right until there were absolutely none left in the sky. Now Junior and Timmy looked at each other. They were truly alone together…

In Dimmsdale, there was a facility that housed the Military Extraterrestrial Research Facility, which is short for MERF. The facility itself was moderately big, with satellites pointing in all different directions, and a huge telescope pointing in the sky.

MERF in the past had associated with The Guys In White, which had the job to capture particularly powerful ghosts, such as the ones that resided in Amity Park.

Currently in the facility itself, a black employee (called Black) answered a ringing phone. The person on the other end was in a desperate panic, saying something about the sky. Black assured that everything would be fine, and then pressed an alarm right next to him, which caused a blaring siren to go off, along with a red light.

Another employee (named White) walked up to Black, holding a cup of coffee. "What's with the MERF alarms?" He began to sip his coffee.

"It's probably nothing, but it seems that every star in the sky has completely vanished." Black answered with a calm voice.

"Yeah you're right it's probably nothing." White answered, taking another sip of his coffee. But then he realized the severity of the situation and spit out his coffee in a panic. "EVERY STAR IN THE SKY HAS VANISHED?" He dropped his sunglasses in the panic.

Black walked over to white. "Should we put out an emergency broadcast, letting the population know an alien attack is eminent?" Black asked, while White picked up his sunglasses and put them back on.

"Yes, the people have a right to know what's going on." White answered. But then he had another idea. "Or…"

"In other news, the government has announced that they turned off the stars to conserve energy,A person on the radio said, as Terrance, Tamara and Crocker passed by trees in the MARF machine.

"Ooh! I totally believe that!" Terrance said, excited. "We have such a great government!"

"And they'd never lie to us, because deceiving people is wrong." Tamara added. The real reason that the three were passing trees was because the van was absolutely still, and there were tree movers moving trees into a large truck, while Crocker was trying fix the MARF Machine.

After a few minutes, Crocker fixed the van and hopped back into it. "Let's MARF and roll, baby!" The van soon took off. There was about a minute of awkward silence.

"A street urchin wearing a pink hat walked into my house today!" Terrance suddenly said.

"Pink hat?" Crocker asked. "There was this new student in my class today with a pink hat! There was also another new student that was a robot, but I don't think that was a student."

"That buck tooth street urchin was weird, though." Tamara added. "He said that we were his mom and dad."

"He claimed to know every student in the class, and he even did a homework assignment that didn't exist." Crocker said.

"What's strange, though, is I feel like I know that street urchin from somewhere." Tamara said. "I believe his name is Tammy or Tommy or something like that; it probably could also be Jimmy. And I'm pretty sure we were going to ask him about something related to pink and green."

"I think you were going to ask him why he's not wearing green instead of pink!" Terrance yelled, laughing.

"No… I think the color purple was involved too…" Tamara added.

"You know what's weird?" Crocker asked. "I think I also remember something about that kid related to something pink and green, and with a little bit of purple."

Before the group could ponder this for too long, they all suddenly stopped the vehicle near a bush, all crying out, "Potty break!" They ran out of the vehicle.

Timmy was stunned at the disappearance of all of the stars he could see. Junior, however, was not as worried.

"The stars disappearing don't mean anything." Junior said. "It'll be easy to just get that wand or whatever to blast the Darkness away. Plus, what does the Darkness even look like? It can't be that bad."

Not a second later, the Darkness had arrived, looming high in the sky over them. The Darkness was massive, being a swirling cloud of blackness with some parts of it being red toward the middle. The wind had picked up a bunch, with the Darkness threatening to suck up the entirety of Fairy World.

"Ok, that must be it." Timmy commented. He screamed and began to run, with Junior following behind a couple seconds later.

"How are we supposed to get out of here?" Junior questioned.

"Uh… Uh…" Timmy struggled to think of an answer. The rainbow bridge back to Earth was too far away to run to… Timmy quickly got an idea. "Wait! Jorgen's fairy cycle!"

"How is a motorcycle going to help us?" Junior asked in frustration.

"It teleported me and Jorgen to Fairy World, so it can teleport us out of here!" Timmy quickly answered.

The two ran to the motorcycle, and Timmy hopped on it. Junior hesitated for a moment before climbing on behind him.

"Do you know how to work this thing?" Junior asked, as the winds outside got louder, making it harder to hear.

"Uh, I think." Timmy answered. He revved the motorcycle once, and then a large portal to Dimmsdale appeared, and the wand on the back of the motorcycle glowed. "Awesome! After we get through this portal, we'll be back to Earth!" Timmy cheered.

Timmy attempted to drive the motorcycle. Unfortunately, it had driven off without him, leaving him and Junior to fall on the floor while the motorcycle went into Dimmsdale, the portal closing.

"Good job!" Junior yelled sarcastically. "I always knew I could count on you."

"This isn't the time for arguing! We have to find another way out of here!" Timmy yelled. The two ran out of the warehouse as the Darkness got closer to Fairy World.

"Think, Turner." Timmy thought to himself. "What fairy goes back and forth to Earth more than anybody?" He got his answer at he looked at another building; Tooth Fairy Enterprises.

"Tooth Fairy Enterprises!" Timmy yelled. "Come on, let's go!"

"Why? How I know this plan will work?" Junior yelled.

"Do you want to get out of here or not?" Timmy screamed at the top of his lungs. Junior flinched at this and followed Timmy to the next building.

Thankfully, this building wasn't too far away. Timmy lead Junior to a factory room of the building.

"What is this place?" Junior asked.

"This is the home of the legendary quarter transporter." Timmy explained. "Every time an Earth kid puts a tooth under their pillow, it comes here and it's replaced by cold, hard cash." Timmy ran over to a device that controlled where the quarters would get transported to. "But today I'm making it the Turner Returner."

Timmy spun the button on the device until it hit Dimmsdale. He hopped on the machine with Junior reluctantly following, and they waited a moment until another one of the tubes came and dropped another tooth, and then sucked them in.

"I hope this works!" Timmy said. As that happened, the entirety of Fairy World had begun to get sucked into the Darkness. If they had been a second too late, they would have been doomed. Nothing was left of Fairy World…

A kid in Dimmsdale had gotten up in the night to get a cup of water, because he couldn't sleep. Earlier, he had put a tooth under his bed and couldn't sleep because of his excitement. When he was walking back to his bed, he saw a small flash under his pillow.

The boy gasped in excitement. "I wonder what the tooth fairy left?" The boy ran onto his bed, grabbed his pillow, and threw it off the bed only to find Timmy and Junior sitting there. There was a moment of awkward silence.

The kid was about to say something until Timmy interrupted him. "Shh, dude, I'm the Chosen One."

"No!" The kid screamed. "You're a crazy kid and a monster under my pillow who stole my quarter! MOM! Quarter theives!"

Timmy and Junior didn't need another hint as they promptly scrambled off of the bed and out of the child's room. They looked to the door, which was down a floor. Timmy ran down first, with Junior following behind him, nearly stumbling over as he ran.

Timmy practically swung the door open as he ran out, screaming. Junior followed behind him, his previous tumbling putting him a little behind.

"My dad's a cop!" The kid yelled from his window. As if on cue, a cop in his car came crashing through the garage door, chasing after the two kids. Timmy knew that they wouldn't be able to outrun them for long, as he looked back and saw more cop cars coming, catching up to them.

But as they ran in the street, he saw a small entrance to the sewers that would normally be used for rain to get into. That would surely get the cops off of their trail. Not wanting to waste another second, Timmy grabbed Junior's arm and ran toward the sewer entrance.

Before Junior could protest, Timmy practically threw the both of them into the entrance, the two of them falling into the sewers. The landing was rough, but it got the police off of their tail.

Junior groaned a little, his landing having been awkward. And then, his eyes suddenly narrowed. "What were you thinking?" Junior yelled. "Why did you throw us down here?"

"Uh, in case you didn't notice, there were police chasing after us!" Timmy yelled with heavy sarcasm. "Oh, and you're welcome." He somehow knew that Junior wasn't going to thank him.

Junior scowled, and sat down by the sewer wall. Timmy still stood, wondering something very important. It was that wherever Cosmo and Wanda were, he hoped that they were okay.

The gumball fairies had all been taken out of the machine by that kid, and they had all been set down on that table, while the kid was still chewing Binky. Binky still screamed in between each chew.

"He's still chewing Binky!" Cosmo yelled in fear.

After a couple of seconds, the kid took Binky out of his mouth and flicked him onto the table. "Ugh, this one lost its flavor."

Binky gasped. "It's horrible in there. And he recently had nachos!"

All of the fairies, except Wanda, screamed.

The kid decided on which gumball he would chew next. "Ooh, a tasty pink gumball!" He took Wanda, and was about to chew her.

"Wanda, Wanda, NO!" Cosmo managed to throw himself at Wanda, knocking her to the ground while he was now in the boy's hand. The kid put him in his mouth and started to chew him.

Wanda rolled a little bit on the table she dropped onto. "Cosmo, No!" She cried out.

Another fairy, Juandissimo, rolled up to her. "Wanda, I feel terrible for your loss. Would you like to make out?"

As the kid was chewing on Cosmo, he suddenly stopped. Cosmo forcibly made the kid blow him out into a bubble. Cosmo was now a bubble, and he could freely move in the air.

"Who wants a balloon ride to freedom!" He cheered. Wanda and Poof latched onto him, and they soared out of the building.

"Quick! Everyone! Into the gross kid's mouth!" Juandissimo yelled.

Then, all of the fairies jumped into the kid's mouth, causing him to fall over.

Cosmo cheered as he flew out onto the open road with Wanda and Poof. Now, they could finally try and find their godchild so they could figure out just what was going on.

Though before long, the MARF Machine happened to pass by them, the vehicle practically speeding as to try and not be late. Terrance was currently driving, but the three floating gum fairies did catch his attention, forcing him to slow down.

"Wait, what are you doing?" Crocker asked in confusion. "If we slow down for even a second, then we won't be the 7,654th to be there, we'll be the 7,660th to be there!"

"Hang on just a second," Terrance started to explain. "I think I saw those, pink, green, and purple things!"

"Wait, you did?" Tamara asked. "Where are they?"

"Behind us, now. Can you still see them?" Terrance asked.

"Hmm…" Crocker said as he looked out the window. "Just barely."

"Here, someone take the wheel for a moment!" Terrance quickly said. Tamara took over while Terrance hopped into the back. He grabbed a nearby camera from a bag and looked out the window. The three fairies were in view, but just barely. Terrance quickly zoomed in the camera as far as he could, and then took a picture. "Got it?"

"Wait, where did you get that camera?" Crocker asked.

"Well…" Terrance started.

Before Terrance and Tamara had started their journey to Las Vegas, Terrance went into the spare room they had to get some other supplies.

As soon as he walked into the room, Terrance knew something was up. "Where's my assortment of items I had?" He questioned. "As long as Dinkleberg didn't take it, everything will be just fine." He walked over to the closet. "That's why I left the most important item in here!" He opened the closet, and saw a camera on a shelf. That's all that was in there. He grabbed the camera and closed the closet.

" Come on! We don't want to be late, so let's go ahead and get ready!" Tamara called from downstairs. 

" Coming!" Terrance said. As he carried the camera, a few specks of magical glitter floated off of it.

"…And now to put this camera back in the bag, where it belongs." Terrance said, placing the camera back in the bag.

"Wait, can I see that picture?" Crocker asked.

"Sure," Terrance said, taking the camera back out and handing it to Crocker. The teacher turned on the camera and looked at the photo. Now that he could see the pink, green, and purple creatures more closely, they looked all too familiar to him…

Chapter Text

It wasn't long before Mario and Tippi went back through the red door to Flipside. When they did, Mario saw a small red heart appear above the door, indicating that chapter had been completed.

"First, to Merlon's place…" Tippi said. Mario nodded, and they went down the elevator. After that, the two saw Merlon already waiting for them by his house.

"You return so soon?" Merlon asked. "I can see from your faces that it went well, indeed… Let's head back to my house so you can tell the details. Please, step right in."

"Alright." Mario said. After Merlon went into his house, Mario and Tippi went in too.

"So, how was it, dear friends? Did you find a Pure Heart?" Merlon asked.

"As a matter of fact, we did!" Mario responded, proving it by bringing out the Orange Pure Heart, letting it glimmer in the room.

"Oh ho, such pure brilliance… This is a true piece of the one true Purity Heart!" Merlon said. Mario then put the Pure Heart away.

"Yes, we met Merlumina… She gave it to us…" Tippi explained.

"Wh-What? Lady Merlumina?" Merlon questioned. "You were well met. She is an ancestor of mine. She was the one who wrote the Light Prognosticus to counteract the dark one… Merlumina and those who followed her built this town. They are why we are here."

Suddenly, a townsperson barged in. "M-M-M-MASTER MERLON! B-B-B-BAD NEWS!" The townsperson yelled.

"What is it? Get ahold of yourself, lad…" Merlon said.

After the townsperson was stammering for what felt like a minute, he finally said, "Y'see… A girl fell outta the sky!"

"What? A girl fell out of the sky? What in the worlds?" Merlon asked.

"I dunno! Just, please! Get on the elevator and come up there to see her!" The townsperson yelled.

"So it shall be!" Merlon responded. "And you, Mario, come along. We may need your presence as well!"

"Ok, sure." Mario said. After Merlon and the townsperson walked out of the house, so did Mario. Mario followed the two to the elevator to the third floor, and went up after them.

But after he did, he saw a sight that he would've never expected. In fact, it seemed almost impossible. But no, she was laying right there, right in front of his eyes…

Princess Peach.

"Um, yeah, so I was just looking up at the tower, and she fell outta nowhere!" The townsperson explained.

"Hmmm… She does not look at all familiar to me… Who could this be?" Merlon asked.

Tippi noticed Mario's expression. "What's the matter?" She asked.

"This is Princess Peach. The woman that got kidnapped." Mario explained.

"Princess Peach? So this is the princess that Count Bleck kidnapped?" Merlon questioned. Mario answered by nodding.

"Well, the poor girl seems to have had a rough time, of that we can be sure." Merlon noted. "She doesn't appear to be conscious… And she is shivering uncontrollably… What could the problem be?" Then Merlon had an idea, and he turned to Mario.

"Mario. You must go to the chef named Saffron on the first floor of Flipside." Merlon explained. "I am sure she knows a warming and revitalizing recipe for this poor girl… Once she revives, we will be able to ask Princess Peach exactly what happened. Now, off with you! Find Saffron the chef on the first floor!"

"Alright, I'll try to be quick." Mario said. He then turned around and headed to the first floor, with Tippi following him.

"Peach… that's the girl you were talking about earlier, right?" Tippi asked.

Mario then had a sudden realization at this, as he reached the elevator to go down to the second floor. "Yeah…" Mario was having some conflicting thoughts at the moment. On one hand, he was happy to see Peach again. But on the other… what she could have done…

It had angered him greatly, for her to just- he couldn't even bring himself to think about it. And he made a resolve. At some point during all of this, he would HAVE to confront Peach. But… when would the best time be? He decided to think more about it later.

By now, he had already gone to the second floor, and was now on the elevator going down to the first floor. As soon as it hit the first floor, he stepped out and walked around.

The first house was just an ordinary house, nothing worth looking into. Next to that, was an elevator that would normally go down another floor, but it was out of service for a little bit. And the next building was exactly what he was looking for.

Saffron's shop. Just what he was looking for. When he walked in, there was a bell chime, indicating a customer had walked in. The store itself was small, seeing how it was just Saffron's.

When Mario walked to Saffron, who was standing behind a desk, she had a huge smile on her face. "Welcome to Sweet Smiles!" Saffron said. "Ooh, sugar, our dishes will turn that little frown right upside down!"

"A friend of mine is out cold, and I need something warm that can revitalize her." Mario explained.

"What? Oh, mercy!" Saffron cried at hearing the news. Saffron thought for a moment. "Well, listen here, sugar… She sounds like she needs some Spicy Soup! All I need is a Fire Burst to make a pot of soup that'll warm her up in a jiffy! Some stores sell Fire Bursts, so just check the shelves wherever you like to shop. You bring me one, sugar, and I'll make you one tasty spicy soup!"

"Wait a sec." Mario said. He turned to Tippi. "Didn't we get a Fire Burst a little while ago?"

"I believe we did…" Tippi said. Pulling it from her hammerspace, she got it and handed it to Mario.

"Aren't you the enterprising one!" Saffron commented. "Hand it over, and I'll whip up some Spicy Soup." Mario handed her the Fire Burst. "So, sugar, you want me to create a dish for you with a Fire Burst?"

"Yes, please." Mario answered.

"One Spicy Soup, coming right up, sugar!" Saffron said. She took the Fire Burst and then proceeded to do her work. It took a couple minutes, which felt like a couple hours to Mario. But soon enough, it was finished.

"Sorry about the wait, sugar… but it turned out just right!" Saffron said. "Careful, it's hot."

Saffron handed Mario the fresh Spicy Soup, complete with a spoon. Due to Mario's gloves, he could hardly feel the heat from the bowl.

"This ought to wake up that sleeping beauty of yours, sugar!" Saffron said. "Get it to her as quick as you can!"

Mario nodded, and then quickly ran out of the shop, careful not to spill even a drop of the soup. Even though Mario was angered at Peach, he did not want anything worse to happen to her than it already had.

The trip up the two elevators felt like it took years because of the time they took. But soon enough, the second elevator finally reached the third floor. Not wasting another moment, Mario carefully rushed over to Peach, who was still lying in the exact same place.

Mario set the Spicy Soup down and got a spoonful of it. And then, very gently, he set it in Peach's mouth. At first, there was nothing. But, soon enough, the princess let out a small but audible groan.

"Oh ho… It seems to have worked." Merlon commented.

After a couple more seconds, Peach seemed to stay put. But then, as if it was a miracle, Peach's eyes blinked. Then, she stood up, taking in her surroundings. It felt like she had been asleep forever, and was relieved to finally wake up.

"Mmmm… I feel like I just ate the most delicious thing…" Peach said. "I hadn't had a dream about such tasty food in ages…"

Peach was facing the other way from Mario, and he had decided to get her attention then. "Hey, Peach!"

Peach suddenly turned around, a little startled. But she was relieved when she saw who the person was. "Oh! Mario! You're OK?" She looked around a little more, noticing how her surroundings were completely alien to her. "But where exactly are we?"

"This is Flipside…" Tippi answered.

"Umm, OK." Peach said. She turned to Merlon. "And who are you?"

"My dear, I am called Merlon. And that is what is known as a Pixl. Her name is Tippi." Merlon explained. "Come, let us adjourn to my house. I would be grateful if you would tell us more there."

"That sounds like a good idea." Mario added.

"…And then before I knew it, I awoke and saw Mario, you, and Tippi." Peach finished her rather lengthy explanation, all of them now in Merlon's house. Mario noted how Peach didn't mention anything about the party at all.

"Well, my dear… That is most assuredly a tale of woe and troubles." Merlon commented.

Peach turned to Mario. "Oh, Mario… What do you suppose happened to Luigi, Violet, and Bowser?" She asked.

"Well, Peach, there's no way to know, really." Mario answered. "Every single one of us got separated, and so far I've only found you."

"Mm, I suppose you're right… There's just no way to know." Peach responded. "I just hope they're safe…"

Mario felt mostly the same as Peach. He deeply cared for the safety of Luigi and Violet at the moment, but… Bowser… Mario would care a lot more about him if he stopped trying to take over the damn kingdom, or at least tried to HELP him in some way.

"Merlon… What should we do next?" Tippi asked.

" "And one Pure Heart shall lead the way to the next…" So it is written." Merlon quoted. "There are still more Heart Pillars to be found in Flipside, young ones. When you find the next Heart Pillar, you must set a Pure Heart in it. And when you do so, a door to the world containing the next Pure Heart will appear."

"Alright." Mario said.

"And…my intuition tells me the next door may lead you to the mysterious Merlee." Merlon explained. "Like Bestovious and I, Merlee is one of the Ancients… We are like long-lost cousins. Yes… I have heard that Merlee has long guarded an ancient and secret treasure. If my instincts are correct, it may be the next Pure Heart we seek. I must tell you, the Light Prognosticus also speaks of her magical powers…"

"So… We just need to find this Merlee person, is that it?" Peach asked. Merlon seemed surprised at her question.

"Oh ho, are you going as well?" Merlon asked. "You should not tax yourself. You've only just recovered…and…it may be dangerous."

"Well, I can't just sit here and let everyone else go off and save the worlds now, can I?" Peach questioned. "After all, The Void that is spreading in the sky is my fault. Mine and Bowser's… So I'm going, and that's final! I've made my decision!"

This surprised Mario, but it actually fell in line with what he was going to do.

"I guess we need to find that next Heart Pillar…" Tippi said.

"Hm… This princess is headstrong, to be sure. How very refreshing." Merlon commented. He walked over to Peach. "I insist you take this." He gave Peach and old, brown key. "There are secrets in this town that even I do not know… This may be one of the keys to uncovering them. Quite literally, in fact. Please, use this key wherever it fits here in town. My intuition tells me you should be able to use it very near my house…"

Merlon thought for a moment. "I will continue to read the Light Prognosticus and look for any clues that may help. I am sure that musty old tome still has much to teach us. Yes, much indeed. Now, Mario, Princess Peach… Do all you can to stop the count's evil plans!"

Peach turned to Mario. "Let's go, Mario! Come on Tippi!" She said. Little did she know of the underlying tension Mario held at this very moment.

"Yes, let's go." Mario responded. Mario, Peach, and Tippi went out of Merlon's house.

"So, how would we get to the Heart Pillar?" Peach asked.

"Merlon said something about it being near his house…" Mario said. He thought for a moment, and then realized a solution that should've been obvious to him. Well first, he had to explain it to Peach. "I think I know where it is."

"You do?" Peach asked.

"Well, I've sort of gotten this power that can help me see things that normally would be impossible to see." Mario explained.

"How does it work?" Peach asked.

"Well, I just have to basically concentrate on it, and it'll happen. It's kinda hard to explain."

"Would I be able to go with you?"


"I mean, if I held your hand or something while you did it, would I be able to go with you?"

Mario thought that it would be a good idea to try. "I don't see why we can't try." Peach grabbed onto Mario's hand, and then the princess chuckled a little.

Mario activated his power. And now, there seemed to be a whole new part of Flipside that he had never seen before. And most importantly, he saw a large gate that was locked. He turned to Peach, and saw that she was looking at the gate too.

"Do you see it?" Mario asked.

"Yes! I do see it!" Peach exclaimed. "Wow! This is amazing!"

Mario smiled a little. But a second later, suddenly he felt strange energy in his hand. It felt like that it was traveling from his hand, into his fingertips. And as for Peach, she soon felt the energy too. Except for her, it started in her fingertips, and then traveled to her hand. But suddenly, it spiked and went to the rest of her body, causing her to scream a little and pull her hand away.

"Peach! Are you okay?" Mario asked, concerned.

"Yeah, I'm fine…" Peach breathed. She expected her surroundings to go back to normal, but that's not what happened. No… she could still see the gate. And… she felt something small in her chest. It was like she was concentrating everything on doing this. And when she stopped, her vision went back to how it previously was. No gate. Just Flipside.

"Mario…" Peach said.

"Yeah?" Mario asked.

"I… I think you gave me your power." Peach guessed.

"Wait, what?" Mario questioned. "Wait, can I still do it?" Mario concentrated for a moment, and indeed he could see the gate. "Are you sure you can do it on your own?"

"Well, I'm not too sure how to activate it." Peach explained.

"It's kinda hard to explain…" Mario said.

"I think I can explain…" Tippi said. "Maybe you should try to concentrate on that area where you felt it at, and maybe it will activate again."

"Hm, maybe I should try that." Peach said. And so she did, and the power indeed did activate. "It works!"

"Great! Now we can get to the Heart Pillar!" Mario said. With both of their powers activated, they headed over to the gate. Peach put the key in, and then it slowly opened.

"Which way should we go?" Peach asked.

Mario thought for a moment before giving his answer. "Maybe down that long hallway."

"Good idea." Peach said. They walked down the long hallway, with Tippi following behind them. The hallway seemed to be unusually narrow, which meant that they had to be very careful about this. Thankfully, they made it across the narrow hallway safe and sound. And then, they had two options.

On one end was a pipe. And on the other end were small pillars that they didn't know what to do with.

"Let's go into the pipe." Peach suggested.

"Good idea." Mario said.

And so they went into the pipe. On the other end, they found themselves in the first floor of the outskirts of Flipside. As they walked along, they found a sign that read, "Some things are not what they seem"

The group pondered what this could possibly mean. And then, they realized it. They both used their power and saw that low pillar had an arrow pointing on it, and that arrow pointed to yet another thin path to the side.

And then after crossing the thin path, they saw it. The Heart Pillar. Though, it was on a platform too high for them to jump to, so they had to figure out another way to get to it. And they did. On the other side of the room, was a platform that was high enough for them to jump to, which led to an even higher platform.

And then, they jumped across each platform until they finally made it to the Heart Pillar. The Heart Pillar was just like the last one. Tall and white, with a hole that would fit the Pure Heart just right.

"I'll put this one in." Peach said.

Mario nodded, and then gave her the Pure Heart. The princess strolled over to the pillar, and then inserted the Pure Heart into it. And then, the entire pillar glowed orange. A huge orange beam shot up into the sky, surprising Mario. Then, it stopped. The glow on the pillar remained.

"Is that what's supposed to happen?" Peach curiously asked.

"Yep, that's it." Mario answered.

"Now, let's head to the door…" Tippi suggested, though Mario was about to suggest something else.

"Actually, isn't it pretty late? I was thinking that maybe we should head to bed for the night, and then early in the morning we could go to the next door." Mario suggested.

"That's a good idea. I'm pretty tired myself." Peach said.

After they got back to the main part of Flipside, they went into the Inn to get some rest, though they had to pay a little bit to be able to spend the night.

Not too much time past before everyone went to sleep. Though, as Mario was sleeping…


He heard a voice that sounded like a psychopath, instantly waking him up. He glanced around, but everything was still the same. Still wary, he went back to sleep.

Chapter Text

For about a half hour, things have been incredibly quiet in the sewers. Timmy and Junior basically ignored each other, with the tension being high. Timmy had set down his backpack that he had been carrying with him this entire time, since it had started to be a drag.

Meanwhile, Junior was still sitting down, leaning on the wall. He hadn't noticed it before, but it had been a while since he ate. His stomach growled in aggravation, needing to be filled.

Junior looked around for anything that he could eat which would be edible. After looking around for a moment, he found that Timmy's backpack was just sitting there on the ground. Surely, there could be food in there?

Timmy was sitting near the flow of water going by, though not going in it. He decided it would be best just to lay low down here for a little while, until the cops forgot about them.

That fact that he was tasked with stopping an evil entity put a heavy weight on his shoulders. It was hard enough to try to even attempt to do that, not to mention the confusing riddle that he had heard. It was all just baffling.

Timmy closed his eyes for a moment, until he abruptly opened them at the sound of chewing. Timmy quickly turned around to Junior eating all of the goldfish, and all of the juice boxes nearly empty.

"Hey! What are you doing?" Timmy yelled, quickly standing up and walking over to Junior.

"What? I'm hungry." Junior said.

"Well, since that was my backpack, maybe you could've done something, like ask if you wanted some!" Timmy yelled.

Junior hesitated for a moment, realizing that Timmy was right. "Well, I already ate it all."

"And thanks a lot." Timmy deadpanned, adding heavy sarcasm. He grabbed the backpack and pulled it away from Junior, keeping it out of his reach.

Junior paused for a moment. "When are we getting out of here?"

"It might be a little while. I want to make sure that the cops are off of our tails before we go back up." Timmy explained.

"No!" Junior suddenly yelled. "I'm not going to wait that long! I want to go back up so I can find a way to get back home!"

"Like I said, it will be a little difficult with the police chasing after you, and the government will try to get you because your kind aren't normally seen on Earth!" Timmy responded.

"You know, it's kind of your fault that we're stuck down here for a while." Junior said.

"And why is that?" Timmy questioned, raising an eyebrow.

"Well, if you weren't so bad at driving a motorcycle, we could've gotten here without needing to run from the police." Junior pointed out.

"I'm in elementary school! Of course I don't know how to ride a motorcycle!" Timmy yelled.

"I'm 6 and I know how to ride a Koopa Klown Kar." Junior responded.

"A what?" Timmy questioned.

"A Koopa Klown Kar, didn't you hear me?" Junior answered. "Well, I can fly it in the air and shoot cannonballs and other stuff out of it."

"Wow, that could be useful, if you actually had it." Timmy deadpanned.

"I do have it!" Junior yelled.

"Well, it doesn't look like it." Timmy responded.

"I have it! It's in my hammerspace!" Junior said.

"Huh?" Timmy asked.

"Ugh, you don't know anything, do you?" Junior yelled. "I'm sure what it is, but I can store stu-"

"Oh, sure I don't know anything." Timmy interrupted with sarcasm. "It's not like you and I live in two totally different dimensions!" Timmy closed his eyes for a moment and took a deep breath. "You know, your attitude is something that needs adjusting."

"Excuse me?" Junior questioned.

"Ever since you woke up in the Cave of Destiny, all you've done is be a brat and make unnecessary jokes." Timmy ranted. " 'Oh, dipper is a funny name!' 'Oh, let's constantly whine about the same thing over and over!' 'Oh, let's eat all of Timmy's food! I'm sure he won't mind!'"

"Shut up…" Junior said.

"No! I won't shut up!" Timmy yelled. "I offered to help you get back home, and all you've done is be an impatient spoiled brat! Even when we were trying to hide, you almost got us caught!"

"No I didn't!" Junior yelled back.

"Oh, didn't you now? I seem to remember someone obnoxiously going, SHHHHHH out loud right in front of the Eliminators!" Timmy pointed out. "And speaking of them, don't you realize that the Darkness is a bigger problem than your dad?"

"Shut… up…" Junior growled.

"God, it seems like every 5 seconds you're complaining about missing your dad! I'm missing someone too! My godparents, and their baby! Jorgen wouldn't even tell me where they were, and he had to erase everyone's memory of me so I have nobody!" That last word seemed to echo throughout the sewer as Timmy yelled it.

"Well, maybe you deserve it!" Junior yelled.

Timmy's eyes went wide for a moment, and then narrowed. "Excuse me? I deserve it? I have to deal with an evil babysitter nearly everyday! I have a teacher that's trying to expose my fairy godparents! I had to save the world from being ruled by Crocker and then Vicky! You think I deserve it? If anyone deserves it, it's YOU!"

Junior stared, pupils small. He couldn't believe that Timmy just said that. He was about to say something until Timmy continued his rant.

"All you've done since I've met you is be an insensitive jerk! You think everyone knows everything about everybody, you act like the Darkness is one huge joke, and you haven't thanked me once for trying to help you! How do I know that the rest of your family aren't jerks just like you, especially your dad?"

That was the last straw. Junior was shaking with rage, and his fists curled up tightly. His eyes had an expression of pure anger. How dare that kid say all that stuff about him, and his father… That was it.

"You… YOU JACKASS!" Junior screamed. Timmy flinched a little at that. Without warning, Junior tackled Timmy to the cold, hard ground. Junior kept Timmy pinned to the ground, one hand on his neck.

"Get off!" Timmy yelled. He tried to struggle, but it proved useless. He put his hand on Junior's hand to try to pull it off, but Junior responded by gripping his neck.

"You wanna know what happens when you insult me and my father? Huh?" Junior yelled. He gripped Timmy's neck tighter, nearly cutting off airflow. He raised his other hand in the air, claws shining brightly. At this, Timmy tried to struggle harder.

"Hold still!" Junior screamed. He lifted Timmy's head up and then slammed it back onto the ground, which caused Timmy to let out a cry. Junior leaned a little closer to Timmy's head. "I'm going to show you what happens when you mess with the wrong koopa…"

Junior sat back up, left hand still raised. There was a pleading look on Timmy's face, silently telling him to let him go. Junior's face had a look of insanity on it, waiting to strike. Then, it happened.

In an instant, Junior slashed Timmy's face, causing the 11 year old to let out a bloodcurdling scream. Acting on instinct, Timmy quickly bit into Junior's right arm, causing the young koopa to quickly reel his arm back. Timmy covered the side of his face with one hand, and then pushed Junior to the ground with the other. Timmy then stood up.

Junior stood up too, and he was about to attack Timmy again, until he noticed just what kind of damage he caused. Even though it was mostly covered by Timmy's hand, he could see the blood flow steadily going down Timmy's face.

Timmy opened his eye that wasn't covered, and let out a small whimper at the pain. He looked horrifying, and his eyes looked as if he was silently asking "why?"

Junior was also horrified, but for different reasons. He hadn't meant to hurt him that badly, he just wanted to teach him a lesson. Nobody dares insult his dad like that. But… was part of what Timmy said right?

There was an unsteady silence for a few moments aside from Timmy's whimpering. He tried to remove his hand from the side of his face, but let out a cry of agony and quickly put it back.

Junior's heart started to race. Had he really caused that much damage? No… he couldn't have… but he did… After a moment's thought, Junior turned and ran, both out of fear and regret.

Junior ran for several minutes before he had to stop out of exhaustion. He wanted to run from the mistake he made. But Timmy had provoked him… but… did he deserve what was said about him?

As these thoughts and more ran through him, Junior felt wetness on his left claw. He slowly lifted it up. His claws and part of his hand was wet with Timmy's blood. Junior screamed and tried to shake it off, though it was starting to dry.

He started to panic, not wanting a reminder of the fatal mistake he had made. Not having any other choice, he dipped his hand into the sewer water to try to get it off. He cringed at first, but still kept it in.

After several seconds, he pulled it out to see if any had come off. Some of it had come off, though a lot still remained. Junior stuck his hand into the water again, using his other hand to try to wash it off. Then, after about a minute of doing this, he felt something in the water. Curious, he gripped it and pulled it out of the water.

Though there was still a little blood left on his hand, that was hardly what he was worried about. There was a piece of paper in his hand; one that looked like it was torn out of a journal. He couldn't read any of the foreign writing on it, nor could he tell what any of the symbols meant. The page had a very faint glow, one that you'd have to squint your eyes to see.

Junior couldn't possibly understand why something like this would just be floating around in the sewer, it didn't make any sense. But just in case, Junior put it in his hammerspace for safekeeping.

He was one of the very few Koopas in the entire family that ever had hammerspace. Not even his dad had it. In fact, he and one other Koopa ever had hammerspace. But… who was the other Koopa that had it? It surprised him that only now he was asking that question.

Interrupting his thoughts, a low growl seemed to echo throughout the entire sewers. It was faint, but at the next growl it got closer. What could even be making that noise?

He turned, but saw nothing. Ahead of him, the lights that illuminated the cave seemed to stop showing up, as if the guy putting up there suddenly decided to quit on the job.

There was another growl, this one being even closer than before. Then, very loud and angry footsteps. Junior turned to face whatever was facing that noise, just to see what it was. But it was still in the darkness beyond the lighting.

And then, it slowly stepped out.

Timmy was in pain. A lot of pain. He had stayed in the same position ever since Junior ran off, but he didn't really pay attention to that. All his mind could focus on was the pain. He wanted the pain to stop now. How could he do that? Wait… maybe there was something in his backpack that could help him.

Timmy crawled over to his backpack the best he could and reached inside of it with the hand that wasn't covering most of his face. He felt around and only found a couple pencils, and-


The magic muffin.

How… how did he forget about it? He could solve everything right now. All he had to do was take a bite out of the muffin and make a wish…

He pulled the muffin out of the backpack. He noticed that it sparkled in the dim light. Then, something happened that he never would've expected.

"Wait, Timmy."

Timmy froze. Where did that voice come from?

"Timmy, it's me, the muffin."

Timmy tried to speak, but all of the pain made it incredibly hard to. He found it incredibly hard to believe that the muffin was talking to him.

"Hang on a sec. I'll fix you up."

Before Timmy could question the muffin, a small aura went out of it and floated to where the wounds were. It slowly attached itself to them, with a feeling of warmth. After several seconds, Timmy felt something different.

The pain and the blood were gone, as if it was never there. He removed his hand from his face, and tried to trace over where the pain previously was. Only the scars remained.

"I-I-I don't understand." Timmy stammered. "How are you able to-"

"You see, Timmy, the Fairy-Versary Muffin is more than just a magical muffin that can grant wishes." The muffin explained, a small glow surrounding it when it spoke. "I am sentient, and I am to choose the right person to be able to use me in the right way."

"What do you mean?" Timmy asked.

"I mean, that when you got me on your first anniversary of having fairies, I was supposed to reveal this to you then, but I couldn't because I allowed myself to fall into the wrong hands." The muffin said.

"But how did you even come back? I thought I ate all of you!" Timmy pointed out.

"You see, Timmy, I was supposed to be gone forever. Once the muffin is eaten, that's supposed to be it. But… the fact that it went out of your control and someone else ate part of it meant that you had another chance."

Timmy was about to say something else, but the muffin knew what it was going to be. "Timmy, don't use me to get rid of the Darkness."

"What? Why not?" Timmy questioned.

"Because… because… Look, Timmy. Some things are impossible to explain, but know this. Some people you may know as enemies will become friends, and some friends you know will become your enemies. When the time is right… you'll know when to use me. Goodbye."

After that, the muffin's glow disappeared, just leaving the muffin itself. At this, Timmy ran to the muffin, picked it up, and shook it in frustration. "No! Wait! I need to know! When will be the right time!"

But there was no answer. Timmy fell silent for a moment, putting the muffin back in his bag. He was alone again. Or.. was he?

'Enemies will become friends…' Timmy thought. And then, he looked in the direction where Junior ran off.

Whatever Junior saw, which was most likely a monster was huge, almost as tall as the ceiling itself. It was many arms and legs, and was an assortment of colors. Some of its limbs were huge, while the others small. It's mouth was huge, lined with many sharp and enormous teeth. And it had no eyes… Right below it's mouth, Junior noticed what looked to be a cluster of broken gem shards, haphazardly forced together, stuck there.

The monster roared, and then swiped at Junior. Acting on instinct, the koopa quickly tucked into his shell, sending him toward the other wall, leaving a small crater. After that, he went out of his shell, a bit dazed. And then, the monster jumped to where he was and tried to swipe at him again.

Junior countered this time by letting out a large plume of fire from his mouth, causing the monster to shriek in pain. But Junior couldn't make the fire last long at all, so the monster retaliated by trying to grab him.

Junior jumped out of the way, and then considered his options at the moment. This monster was unlike anything he's seen before, and he was unsure of even how strong it was.

Junior saw that the monster was still for a moment, and then took his chance to attack. He slashed at the cluster of gems on the monster, and it shrieked louder than ever before. Junior had caused a large scratch on the gems, which the monster seemed to be in a great deal of pain from.

And then, a moment later, the monster charged at him. That was his cue to run. And so, he quickly turned and ran down the hallway as fast as he could, not realizing that he was going back in the direction he came from.

Timmy was now unsure of what to do. How would he be able to even talk to Junior at this point? Just how? For one, Junior might still be pissed at him. But Timmy knew that Junior was a little kid, though… the fact that he did that earlier… he was now unsure.

Should Timmy try to look for him? Would Junior have already gotten too far away to find? All of these questions and more ran through Timmy's head.

Then, he heard a scream, slowly getting closer, that sounded all too familiar to him. He could see Junior running from several yards away, and he was running from what looked to be a huge monster.

Timmy still had a level of contempt for Junior, but… could he set it aside? After all, the muffin said that some enemies may become friends. But… if that were true, couldn't the opposite also be true?

Timmy didn't have much time to dwell on this, though, as a second later, Junior had accidentally ran into him, due to the Koopa looking the other way for a moment to see if the monster was still chasing him.

After Junior ran into Timmy, the two tumbled over, nearly falling into the sewer water. Both of them looked up, and saw the monster looming over them, threatening to do something at any moment.

Timmy and Junior both managed to get up, though Junior was shaking and basically frozen in place, as he wasn't sure what to do now. And then Timmy narrowed his eyes.

"You try to find a weak point, I'm going to try to find a weapon." Timmy declared, taking Junior by surprise.

"What?" Junior asked.

"Find a weak point!" Timmy reiterated. Junior nodded, and then hesitantly ran to the monster. A weak point? Maybe… the cluster of gems on it? What would happen if he tried to attack it more?

Junior raised his claws and slashed at the cluster of gems, prompting the monster to let out another scream. And then Junior did it again. And again. Though, while the monster was in pain by it, the gems looked to barely even be scratched. Junior knew that he had to try something else. And he thought he knew just what.

Meanwhile, Timmy was searching for a weapon. The first place he looked was in his backpack. At first, all he could find was the magic muffin, but after a little bit more of searching, he found what could be his weapon. A couple of pencils.

After grabbing all 3 of them, Timmy then rushed over to the monster. Junior had tried to do something else- rip the cluster of gems off of the monster, which seemed to distract it. However, the monster was trying to get Junior off of it, as it kept trying to grab it. It needed another distraction.

And luckily, Timmy had what Junior needed. Timmy ran to the monster's back, and without remorse, stabbed the monster in the back with all three pencils. The monster then shrieked, its attention focused on getting the enormous pain in its back gone.

Timmy was expecting blood or some liquid to come out of where he stabbed the monster, but there was none. He realized that he couldn't focus on that now, and ran over to where Junior was.

Junior was still trying to pry off the cluster of gem shards. He was hardly making any progress, though as the gems seemed to stay on tight. He looked to Timmy, who had just run over. "Help me get this off!" Junior yelled.

Timmy nodded and gripped the gem shards. He began to pull on them, as Junior pulled on them harder. The monster's screams became louder and louder, the pain getting worse.

And then, with one final tug, Timmy and Junior both yanked on the gem cluster as hard as they could. The monster suddenly poofed into a cloud of smoke, leaving the fused gem shards behind.

Junior looked at the gem shards he held in his hands for a moment, and then put it in his hammerspace. Without warning, Junior suddenly felt dizzy. He wasn't sure how long it'd been since he slept, but he needed to, now. And so, he ended up falling to the ground, passing out.

Not a moment later, Timmy had the same feeling too. And then, once he passed out, both of them slept on the ground together, getting the rest they deserved.

Chapter Text

The sound of an alarm clock woke the two heroes and butterfly up. Mario was up first, shortly followed by Peach. And then, Tippi finally woke up several seconds later.

"So, is everyone ready to go to the door now?" Tippi asked.

"Yes, we are." Mario said. For a moment, he thought about that laughter he heard last night. It reminded him of something he heard not too long ago… but what? But that wasn't what mattered right now. At some point soon, he would have to confront Peach. After all, it would be better for him to do it sooner than later.

After they ate a short breakfast to get their energy up, the group headed up the elevator and walked to the orange door. And now, they would be thrust into a new chapter of their adventure. With Peach with him, surely things would be easier? Though, Mario knew of what he had to do…

"You ready?" Mario asked, facing Peach.

With Princess Peach at his side, Mario set out once again, bound for adventure.

This time, our heroes were tasked with finding the mysterious charmer, Merlee.

If Merlon was right, then Merlee was the key to finding the next Pure Heart.

Never one to flinch from danger, Mario set out to find Merlee's mysterious mansion.

But little did he know, the evil works of dastardly Count Bleck awaited at every turn…

As the two walked through the door, they looked at their surroundings. The grass was lush with green, with some tall vines poking out of it. There were large, rectangular hills in the background complemented by the orange sky.

"The Pure Heart is somewhere up ahead… Yes, it must be… But it could be a ways…" Tippi explained.

"My best guess as to where it could most likely be is in the mansion." Peach said.

"That's probably where it is." Mario agreed. "Now come on, let's get going."

The area that they were running through was Gloam Valley. Right before them was a platform with several Koopa Troopas walking around on it. Jumping on them would cause them to hide out in their shell, and when kicked, they would shoot off, inadvertedly knocking out anything in their way. And when Mario had done just that, his only reward for his efforts was a single coin.

Up next, was a platform, followed by a body of water followed by a ledge to a high patch of grass. It looked to be too high to jump, but when Mario tried to make the gap, he barely made it. Peach had to use her umbrella to safely float across.

Next, as they continued across the path, there was yet another block with only one coin in it. And then, there were some platforms ahead that would slowly sink into the peach water, which was harmless. And then, after going through more sinking platforms, they found themselves at a locked door.

So they turned back. Mario soon noticed that there was a platform supported by vines that was way too tall for them to jump to on their own, but it looked like it lead somewhere. So what should they do? Peach suggested that they use their power, and once they did, they found a couple of blocks that could get them up there. Once they hopped up there, they stopped using their power.

The two of them jumped across precarious platforms, and came across a pipe. After going down it, they were in a dark room with two Squiglets and a Squig. After making quick work of the enemies, a chest rose up out of the floor. Peach opened the chest, and inside of it was a key.

"Do you think this key could go to that door?" Peach asked. Well, there was only one way to find out. After they headed out the pipe, Peach used the key on the door from earlier. And sure enough, it worked.

In the next room, Mario turned around and hit a block. What seemed to be a small, 8-bit version of him floated down toward him. Once it touched him, several of those 8-bit Marios surrounded him.

A Paragoomba was bouncing toward him. However, one of the 8-bit Marios charged at it, defeating it, but the 8-bit creature also disappeared.

"Well how about that." Mario smiled. Peach chuckled a little; they were cute how they all stood around him. They didn't walk too much further before coming across another door. On the other side, what looked like an escaped convict was hiding there.

"HOT GIRL ALERT!" The convict suddenly yelled, at seeing Peach. "We must've been fated to meet! Yes! You are my destiny!" Peach's mouth was agape. She literally had no idea how to react to this. "Please! Go out with me!"

"What a silly man you are. I'm very sorry…but I really must be somewhere." Peach rejected.

"Where? Merlee's Mansion?" The guy asked. "I wouldn't go there if I were you! You'll get trapped there and bad things will happen!"

"Trapped? What are you talking about?" Peach asked.

The guy suddenly started shivering, as if thinking about something very bad. "…I don't even want to remember it!" He managed to say. "But now that you're with me, you don't have to worry about all that, baby! Because I am your fate… Your DESTINY!"

Mario was about to tell the guy off, but Peach said something first. "Uh, thanks for the info… If I don't come back, will you, perhaps, try to save me? You know… Like a certain mustachioed man used to do?"

"Mustachioed man?" The guy questioned. "There are two things I hate… Old dudes with mustaches, and old dudes without mustaches." Mario felt taken aback by this. "So take a hike, old dude! Go up the road to Merlee's Mansion, will ya?"

"Come on Peach, let's go." Mario said, practically dragging her to the door and back where they previously were. "I really wanted to slap him in the face at multiple points."

"Well, let's put it in the past." Peach said. "That guy's probably wrong about the dangers in Merlee's Mansion."

Peach's first statement could not be any more ironic. Though her second statement… could there be some truth to what that guy said? Nah, Peach was correct when she said there would be no danger…


Mario shook his head, getting that thought away from him. "Let's just focus on getting to the mansion, and then whatever happens in there, we'll be able to get through it." Peach responded with a nod. And so, they continued their adventure.

There were more Paragoombas and a Piranha Plant, which the 8-bit Marios quickly defeated, though they were getting fewer in number. But this time there wasn't even another door. On a platform that they could only jump to from a pipe, there were more of those squares that Mario found a while ago.

After crossing them, they jumped across platforms that led back the way they came, though higher in the air. And then, they came across a pipe that led them to some hills in the distance, though they were no closer to the mansion.

When they crossed the platforms, they found a switch that, after behind hit, unveiled a door that would allow them to proceed. After going back through the pipe, they went through the door.

After that, the next area was just a long stretch of grass, with blocks to hit and enemies to defeat. In the next room, there was a block that allowed them to reach higher platforms in order for them to move on. Once they crossed that and went back down to the ground, Mario hit that contained a flower. Peach went up and tried to grab it, but something different happened.

Soon, coins attached to flowers rained down from the sky. Mario and Peach hurriedly scattered to try to collect them. Between the two of them, they managed to collect around 50 coins. And then, they went into a nearby pipe.

The pipe led into a room that seemed to be empty. The group thought that the room was useless, but Tippi thought otherwise. After Mario used her ability, they found a hidden switch. After the switch was hit, it led to yet another pipe. Down this pipe was yet another room, with a weird floating orange creature. Tippi explained that it was a Growmeba, which had the ability to clone itself. Mario and Peach quickly defeated the Growmeba, and then, a large chest was revealed. And once Mario opened the chest, out came another Pixl.

"SSS-BOOOOM!" The new Pixl said. This Pixl was shaped like a small bomb, with small eyes in the middle. It had small wings so it could hover. This Pixl was called Boomer.

"Good vibes! Them vibes set off my blow-stuff-up sensors! You like explodin'? Sss-POW!" Boomer said. "I ain't sensed real good blow-stuff-up vibes in… 1,500 years! Sss-POOOM! I gotta check those vibes out a little more close-like!" Boomer floated down a little closer to Mario and Peach. "Check it out: just answer a couple questions real quick. Sss-BLAAAAM! OK, sss-BOOOOM?"

"This should be fun." Peach said. Mario nodded in agreement.

"Here we go, sss-BWAMMO!" Boomer yelled. "You stay up wonderin' if anyone ever gives presents TO Santa Claus."

"Well, I guess." Mario answered. "And I do remember one time where Christmas lasted for several days straight."

"For some reason, you clean your room before a test." Boomer said.

"I remember doing that sometimes when I was a kid." Peach answered.

"When someone says, "Let's just be friends," you think, "Yeah, whatever."" Boomer said.

"Uh, sure. Let's go with that." Mario hesitantly answered.

"You don't really understand why I'm askin' you all these weird questions." Boomer said.

"Well they haven't really been questions, but sure, I don't really understand." Peach pointed out.

"You think shoppin' online is a wonderful and magical experience." Boomer said.

"Yeah, I do it sometimes." Mario said with a shrug.

"You once put on a shirt inside out but didn't bother reversin' it before goin' out." Boomer said.

"Yeah, I remember that." Peach said.

"You wanna be sleepin' when you're awake, but when you're tired, you wanna wake up." Boomer said.

"Sometimes I feel that way." Mario answered.

"You're getting' real tired of these questions." Boomer said.

"Umm…yeah." Peach quickly answered.

Boomer floated higher into the air. "Got it, got it, GOT IT! SSSS-BOOOM! You two got some tasty vibes! Sss-BLAM! My mind's made up now! Ssss-BLAPPOW! You guys… Are worthy of my power!"

And then, Boomer floated near where Tippi was, somehow replacing Thoreau. Mario was about to question this, but Tippi already had an explanation for it.

"If you need to use Thoreau again, you can call upon your power to switch to him." Tippi explained.

"Well, that's convenient." Mario said. The fact that their power also allowed them to switch Pixls would be very helpful.

Mario and Peach went back up the pipes and continued along the path they had previously been on. They came up to a platform that they could only cross if they used Boomer to blow up some blocks. After that, they were faced with four separate doors. Mario and Peach agreed to split up to search the doors. Mario went to the rightmost door and Peach went to the leftmost door.

In the rightmost door, Mario only found a Spiky Goomba, so he gave up on that one and went to the next door. The next door was equally as useless, only holding a Shlurp.

With Peach, however, the door she went into, there were some blocks on the ground with she could blow up with Boomer, that led to a lower floor, with contained a switch. She hit the switch, and then the ground shook for a moment. There were some more blocks that she could blow up that led to an even lower floor, which led to a door.

After going through the door, she saw she was back where all the doors were, and there was an additional door. Mario soon came out of the door next to her, frustrated, until Peach pointed out the extra door. After going through the new door, they saw something in the distance.

Merlee's Mansion. Now they could see the mansion for themselves, even if it was still far away. But that was not what was on Mario's mind at the moment. No… Mario had to do this now or never. The longer he would put this off, the more anxious and harder it would get.

"Um, Peach?" Mario hesitantly asked.

"Yeah Mario?" Peach stopped, and turned around to face the plumber.

"Well, there's something very important I need to ask you, and I need you to be a hundred percent honest with me. Okay?" Mario asked.

"Alright…" Peach said, though she was a little nervous.

Mario took a deep breath. "Okay… Why the fuck while at my brother's and my birthday party, was Luigi shopping at some random grocery store, and when I went to find him and we came back to the party there was no sign of it being a birthday party! And now that I remember, the night before that, you gave me something that made me pass out while I was drunk, and I don't even know what that was about!"

Peach stood in shock for a moment. "Mario… I have no clue what you're talking about."

"W-What?" Mario spat out incredulously. "What do you mean, you have no idea what I'm talking about?"

"I clearly remember you and Luigi both coming to me and saying you didn't want a birthday party at all." Peach explained. "It seemed a little odd, because normally you all love the parties."

"NO!" Mario yelled. "I saw the birthday cake, I saw the presents, I saw the people at the birthday party! What I said is exactly what happened!" Mario paused for a moment before he found his words again. "Since to you, there was no birthday party? What did happen the next day?"

"Well, I recall just hanging out with you, Mario. Luigi volunteered to get some stuff at the grocery store, and then you invited some of your old friends over. Soon enough they had to leave, and then me, you, Luigi, and Violet just spent the rest of the night together." Peach explained. "Are you sure you don't remember it that way?"

"I…I-I…I can't believe this…" Mario said. "I-I-I-"

"Let's just focus on getting to the mansion and the Pure Heart for now…" Tippi interrupted. "I'm sure that this will all be sorted out at some point or another…"

"Yeah, you're right." Mario said. "Come on Peach, let's go."

Peach nodded, and they ran to Merlee's Mansion, to find the Pure Heart. But the question still lingered in their minds… What just had happened on the day of the 'party'? Was Mario or Peach telling the truth? Or… was it something else…

At first, it was dark. Timmy felt like he had slept for the longest time he ever had. And… he felt a strange feeling. It was like half of his body was warm and the other half was cold. Also… it felt like he was cuddling with someone?

As Timmy slowly opened his eyes, he saw that he had in fact been cuddling Junior, and was sleeping right next to him. Timmy quickly stood up and moved away from Junior. What had led them to cuddle like that last night? Especially after what had happened…

About a minute later, Junior also woke up. At first, he seemed drowsy. But after blinking a couple times and rubbing his eyes a little, he finally woke up. And then, he remembered last night.

Almost immediately, Junior froze up. He saw Timmy standing next to him, and he almost considered running away again, until he remembered what happened last night when he tried.

The silence lasted for several seconds, with it becoming more and more awkward each second. That is, until Junior broke the silence.

"How'd… how'd you heal so quickly?" Junior asked, looking at the small, but noticeable scar on Timmy's face.

"I'll… I'll tell you when we get out of the sewers." Timmy vaguely answered.

"Oh… are we going out soon?" Junior asked.

"The police are probably off of our tails now, so yes." Timmy answered. He grabbed his backpack that was laying on the floor and put it back on.

It seemed so foreign to Junior how Timmy was acting right now. He thought that he would've hated him… what had happened after he ran away? He would really have to ask him that.

"Come on, let's go. It's probably daylight by now." Timmy said.

Junior nodded in response. Near them, there was a ladder that led up out of the sewers. Timmy climbed up it first, removing the manhole at the top of the sewers, allowing him to exit it. And then, Junior climbed up out of the ladder.

The day was very young, with the sun slowly rising up into view. Thankfully, nobody had been walking outside, allowing the two to remain unseen.

"So… what do we do now?" Junior nervously asked.

"I have a little bit of money, so we can get some food somewhere. I know a friend's restaurant the he can get me a good deal at." Timmy explained. The two walked off of the street and onto the sidewalk, with Timmy leading the way.

"Do you think he'll be open this early?" Junior asked.

"Oh yeah, he always open really early." Timmy answered.

"Uh, so, about my earlier question…" Junior said. Timmy raised an eyebrow for a moment, until he realized what Junior was saying. Granted, it was a tough topic, but he would be able to explain it.

"Well, you see…" Timmy began, unsure of how to put it. "I had this muffin in my backpack that could grant any wish and I forgot about it, but then last night I realized I had it again and then it started talking to me and it healed me and told me about stuff I don't really understand and I guess it kinda deactivated and yeah, that's kinda it."

"What?" Junior asked incredulously.

"Yeah, I'm not sure either." Timmy answered. And a few seconds later, they were at the place Timmy led him to. It was Shirley's Pizza Palace. "Do you mind waiting out here for a moment while I go in and get the food?"

"Yeah, I guess." Junior answered.

And then, Timmy went in the restaurant. This gave Junior a chance to pull out that strange piece of paper from earlier. Since Timmy told him how the scar had healed, at some point he would tell him about the paper.

When he took another look at the paper, he could still hardly understand it. Nothing about it made any sense to him. But… something about the paper called out to him. He didn't understand it, though, at the same time… it felt like he kinda did…

Before he could think about it any further, he suddenly heard fast, oncoming footsteps. Not wanting to be seen, he quickly hid behind a garbage can and peeked around.

There was a man that had been running on the sidewalk, and had stopped when he stood in front of Shirley's Pizza Palace. The man's clothes were tattered. His eyes wide and scared, as if he was afraid something was going to catch him at any moment.

But the man quickly left. From a complete standstill, he took off running. Though, while he ran, he turned his head for a moment… and saw Junior, just before the young koopa fully hid himself behind the garbage can. At that, the man seemed to run off even faster, leaving behind many questions.

About a couple minutes later, Timmy came out of the restaurant, with a small box of pizza and a bag.

"I forgot that everybody forgot I exist, so I didn't get the deal that I wanted." Timmy explained. "But I had enough to get this and these two sodas."

Not too long later, the two had gone to a relatively clean alley to eat their food, so they wouldn't be seen. Though there wasn't a lot of it, it did help to get some of their energy back. And the sodas helped, too.

"So, what are we gonna do now?" Junior asked.

"The thing we need to focus on." Timmy answered. "Finding the White Wand."

"Right." Junior agreed.

A smile slowly started to form on Timmy's face. It had taken a little while, but they finally became a team.

It was now midday. Apparently, the cops hadn't given up their search on the two of them; they had taken a short recess the previous night. Which was why two cops were walking by and placed a "WANTED QUARTER THEIVES" poster which Timmy and Junior's face on it on a telephone pole.

Unexpectedly, Timmy popped out of a garbage can nearby, and grabbed the Wanted poster. Junior was hiding behind said telephone pole, and peeked out for a moment.

"The Chosen One and a friend were alone in the city." Timmy commentated. "But he knew tha-"

"Should you really be in the trash can?" Junior asked.

"It's for dramatic effect." Timmy answered normally, but then he went back to how he was previously talking. "But he knew that if he found his fairies…"

A bus was coming by, so Junior hid at a different angle so nobody could see him, while Timmy kept talking. "…He could solve the ancient riddle and locate the-" The bus door swung open on Timmy, leaving him to yell out a cry of pain.

Multiple people got off the bus, one of them being a female tour guide. "Okay, follow me to see the Kiss, Shmodan's most famous sculpture at the Dimmsdale Art Museum." The woman said, leading the group of people into the museum.

"The Kiss…" Timmy said, walking closer to the museum. "Wait a second! The White Wand is hidden in a rock and sealed with a kiss!" Timmy pointed to the poster of the statue of two people kissing. "The wand is in that statue!"

"This'll be easy!" Junior said.

"You said it!" Timmy agreed.

"Wait… shouldn't I stay out here, since you know, I'm-"

"Aw don't worry!" Timmy said. "It's an art museum! People will think you're art!"

"Yeah, a piece of art that can walk and talk." Junior pointed out.

"Eh, we'll figure it out when we get inside." Timmy said.

"So… just how are we supposed to get that out?" Junior asked. The two were now in the museum, standing behind the tour group, which was currently viewing the statue.

"Considered priceless, the statue is 500 years old. It's more than a work of art. It's a work of magic!" The woman explained to the tour group, who then started taking pictures.

"Hmm…" Timmy thought, trying to come up with a plan. "We need something that will be able to blast away that rock so we can get to the wand."

"Well, my Klown Kar has a cannonball that could do that." Junior said. "But I don't have it and I don't know where it could possibly be!"

"Is it over there?" Timmy asked, pointing to somewhere else. Several feet away, a new art piece in the museum was being judged. And that piece just so happened to be Junior's Klown Kar.

"Hmm… Well, this piece is quite interesting, and it is visually interesting." The judger said, looking over the "piece".

"Okay, okay, and how much will I make from this?" The teen that brought it in asked.

"Well, it would make a lot of money…" The teen's face lit up. "…But it's too modern. Sorry. I'm going to have to reject it, Lars."

"What?" Lars questioned. He took back the "piece". "Well, this was a big waste of time." Grumbling, he walked off. "Ugh, THIS is what happens when I decide to leave Beach City to go on vacation for a week! Oh well, I guess it's a good thing I didn't go to Piedmont. I heard that place stinks!"

As Lars walked past the two, Timmy and Junior realized they needed to do something. But as it turned out, they actually didn't need to do anything, as Lars just simply threw the Klown Kar on the ground and stomped off.

"Well, that was convenient." Junior said. "Did you notice how rude that guy was?"

"Eh, I'm sure he's just a random teen that won't ever be important for anything." Timmy said.

Junior quickly ran over to his Klown Kar and hopped in it, with somehow nobody looking. And then, he flew up into the air. "Let's test this baby out." He pressed a button on it, and a space opened for a cannon. And then when he pressed another button, a cannonball came flying out of the cannon, hitting the statue, and causing it to go into a million pieces.

"Suffering statues!" The woman screamed. Timmy ran over to the rubble, as did Junior, after he got out of his Klown Kar and put it in his hammerspace.

"Don't panic! I'm the Chosen One!" Timmy said, finding the head of the statue and smashing it while looking through the rubble.

"We're saving your lives!" Junior added, as he also looked through the rubble.

"Security!" The woman yelled, blowing a whistle.

As the two looked through the rubble, they soon came to an unfortunate realization. "There's no wand! Where's the wand?" Timmy questioned. But several cops were soon behind them.

"Freeze, statue smashers!" A cop yelled, pointing at them.

"Hey, they're also the quarter theives." Another cop pointed out, holding up the Wanted poster. At that, the other cops whipped out their batons.

"Run?" Junior asked.

"Run." Timmy answered. They both screamed, and ran out of the museum as fast as they could. While they were doing that, Timmy quickly ripped a painting of the Mona Lisa off the wall, poked out its eyes, and then used it as a disguise. Junior then did the same with a painting of The Scream.

When they got outside, cop cars surrounded the museum. "Freeze!" A cop said. He walked up to them holding a baton and a Wanted poster. "And tell us, mystery people, have you seen these evil perpetrators?"

Timmy took the poster and took a short look at it. "Uh, nope, I'm just standing here being a lady." He raised the pitch of his voice to disguise it. "I use lipstick."

"And I also have not seen them either." Junior said, also disguising his voice.

"Thanks, trustworthy citizens with a renaissance smile and a forever scream." The cop said. "Move out, boys!" All the cops got into their cars and drove off. A couple seconds later, Timmy and Junior took off the disguises.

"That was close." Junior commented.

"But it was also cool! We totally fooled those cops!" Timmy said. And then a smile formed on Junior's face.

"Yeah. I guess we did." Junior said. He looked at the painting he held. "Why is this guy screaming?"

Timmy threw the Wanted poster aside because he didn't need it anymore. "Um, my teacher says it's because he got an F, but I don't think that's the case. Anyway, I know where we have to go. Follow me."

Timmy ran, and then Junior followed him, both of them dropping the paintings. The lone Wanted poster had floated to the ground, where the Lead Eliminator quickly picked it up. Two other Eliminators were behind him.

"The Chosen One is here. We were fooled." The Lead Eliminator said, crinkling the poster and letting it fall to the ground. "Find him."

"And we will. Right after we hit this sweet pink shirt shop." Another Eliminator said.

"What." The Lead Eliminator deadpanned.

"Oh you're the only one who get to wear cool earth clothes?" A third Eliminator pointed out.

The Lead Eliminator groaned in exasperation. "Hurry up!"

The other two Eliminators walked into the pink shirt store, completely disregarding anything as they each grabbed a shirt, ignoring the screams from the people inside. Then they walked out with the pink shirts on.

"Sweet!" The two both said, exchanging a high-five.

Chapter Text

On the far side of a beast-ridden swamp, Mario and co found an imposing residence.

" This must be Merlee's Mansion!" squealed Princess Peach with glee.

If our friends could only find the Pure Heart quickly, their quest here would end.

But when has fate ever put Mario on such a simple path?

Brimming with anticipation, our plucky heroes plunged into Merlee's Mansion…

Mario and Peach had finally done it. They were at Merlee's Mansion. Now that they saw the mansion up close, it looked bigger and more imposing than before.

"We may as well go ahead and go inside." Mario suggested. The more time they wasted out here, the less time they would have to get all the Pure Hearts.

"Right." Peach responded. Without any more hesitation, they walked into the mansion. Right away, they could tell that this would be difficult. Besides the fact that the window design made it look like a prison, there was something they didn't account for. Guard dogs, or rather, Gnips.

"Shh…" Mario whispered. "If we try to walk around them, maybe they won't notice us."

"Sounds like a good idea." Peach whispered. They tried to get past the Gnips quietly. Though they were remaining absolutely quiet, the Gnips still noticed them. They deemed them threats, and chased them.

"Run!" Mario yelled. They saw a door and gunned for it. They barely made it to the door and shut it behind them right before the Gnips got them. In the next room, they saw a maid up ahead, followed by some stairs. They walked up the main. She was a green woman with maid's clothes on, who bowed when they walked up.

"Well, hi there! Big welcome! Welcome to Merlee's Mansion!" The maid said. "I'm Lady Merlee's handmaid. My name's Mimi! But you can call me Mimikins if you want! You're here to see Lady Merlee, aren't you?"

"Yes, do you know where she is?" Peach asked.

"Well, Lady Merlee is on the second floor, in the farthest room." Mimi answered. "Just head on up there whenever you're ready! Oh, golly, but listen… DON'T YOU DARE GO INTO ANY OTHER ROOMS BY ACCIDENT, OR ELSE! Enjoy your visit, OK?"

"OK…" Mario quietly responded.

Mario and Peach were quiet as they walked upstairs. "That maid needs to learn some manners." Peach whispered.

"At least she told us where Merlee is." Mario responded. "Let's just hurry up and get the Pure Heart, and get back to Flipside. Cause this place is freaking me out a little."

"I don't blame you, it's freaking me out too." Peach said. By now they were out of Mimi's earshot, and they were on the second floor. "I'm sure it's just like this to ward off intruders."

"I hope you're right." Mario said. They walked to the last door in the second floor, the one Mimi told them to go to. "Okay, let's go in." He opened the door and they all went in.

"Wow, this room is big…" Tippi noted.

The room was indeed big. And… Merlee wasn't in it.

"Mimi told us she would be in here." Peach said. "Maybe she got mixed up? Maybe Merlee changed rooms?"

"We should probably explore here anyway, in case we find something useful." Mario said. And so the group looked through the room. Mario walked over to the end of the room and saw a green button.

"I'm not sure if we should press that button…" Tippi said.

Mario thought for a moment. What if Merlee was actually in this room, but the button revealed where she was, or a way to get to her? Mario suggested this idea to Tippi, who begrudgingly agreed. Mario pressed the button.

While Mario was doing that, Peach looked up to see if there was anything useful up. But when she did, she saw spikes come out of a high-raising grey platform. All the windows had bars put over them.

"What's happening?" Peach asked.

The room started to shake, and Mario saw why. He looked up, and the spikes were slowly coming down toward them. He nearly screamed, but barely remained his composure. "Head for the exit!" He yelled.

They made a mash dash for the door, fueled on adrenaline. Mario practically slammed into the door and tried to open it, except… Wait. It wouldn't open… Had the spikes done this? Was this it?

All because he had to press that stupid button. And now… he had basically killed himself, Tippi, and Peach. Without them, nothing was going to stop The Void from destroying everything. He never even got to say goodbye to his brother… Luigi had been the innocent one in all this… And now, because of his own stupid actions, his brother would die.

"MARIO!" Peach practically yelled, getting him out of his thoughts. "I think I know a way out of this! We have to use that power!"

Mario snapped out of it. What Peach said… made sense. Almost always his power had gotten him out of a bind. He quickly used it, and he was glad he did. The spikes had been coming down at a faster rate, and then they suddenly crashed down next to them.

"That… was close…" Mario said. He looked up again, and saw several platforms high in the room, and the only way to get to them would be the platform that the spikes were on. They hopped onto it quickly, and waited for it to rise up.

When it rose all the way up, they made their way to several platforms. At the end of them, was a chest with a key inside of it. They safely made their way back down to the ground and exited the room; now that the door was thankfully unlocked.

"Where do you think this key goes?" Mario asked. Peach shrugged. They walked downstairs, and ignored Mimi as they turned to see if there was anywhere in the mansion they could use the key. They turned the corner, only to see…

A bigger version of one of the Gnips from earlier was chained to a door. That had a lock on it, connected to the chain. At seeing them walk up, it lashed out at them, but was stopped short by the chain. Mario noticed how the Gnaw was kinda lashing out more toward the side of him. And he knew why. It was most likely lashing out at Mimi…

"I'm pretty sure the Gnaw isn't going to hurt us…" Tippi said. "We're Merlee's guests, and her pets are never supposed to attack her guests…"

"Then we'll free it. It should be grateful for our help." Peach added. She cautiously stepped a little closer to the Gnaw. "Hey fella, it's okay. We're not going to hurt you. We just want to free you from your chain."

The Gnaw understood, and held back a little. Though it started whining because it was still attached to the chain. Mario carefully walked past it and to the door that was locked. He unlocked the door, and the lock came off as well as the chain.

In an instant, the Gnaw started barking loudly. For a second, Mario prepared to fight for his life against the Gnaw in case it turned on them. But no, instead it ran straight for Mimi, forcing the maid to stop her cleaning and run from it to who knows where.

"This mansion has a lot of secrets…" Tippi commented.

"Let's hope we survive." Mario said.

"Well, I'm sure Merlee wouldn't try to kill us…" Peach said. There was an air of uncertainty around the group, as they eventually opened the door, many questions entering their mind.

Mario and friends kept up their search, delving ever deeper into the mansion.

Wherever they looked, though, they found no sign of Merlee.

Where was this mysterious woman?

" Ah, maybe…this way…" So said Tippi, trying to sense the Pure Heart's location…

With dread dangling like a broken chandelier, our heroes hurried through corridors…

The group walked through Merlee's Mansion. "Just how long have we been here?" Mario asked. "It feels like this mansion is a lot bigger on the inside than on the outside."

"I agree." Peach said. "And why couldn't Merlee have just been waiting at the door for us?"

"Maybe… something might've happened to her." Mario said with nervousness.

"I'm sure we'll find her soon…" Tippi said. "Let's just all be calm."

Mario saw a block ahead and ran up to hit it. But what somehow none of them noticed, was that there was a vase of all things on it, and when Mario hit it, it fell to the ground and shattered in many pieces.

"Whoops…" Mario said. Shoot. Was that one of Merlee's vases? He had the coins, he could replace it. But before he could say anything, the group heard a sudden scream.

And lo and behold, it was from Mimi. The maid came running up to them the instant she heard that noise. "You broke it! You broke my most favoritest vase!"

Mario was about to try to apologize, but he couldn't get a word in edgewise. "DOOFUSES!" Mimi continued. "I loved that vase more than ANYTHING! And you BROKE it!"

"L-Look, I can pay for it." Mario was finally able to say.

"Oh, you'll pay for that! Yes, you will…" Mimi said. "I'll have you know that that vase cost 1,000,000 Rubees… So hand over that money! Now! Or you're DONE FOR!"

Rubees? Wait… could they be exchanged for coins? If they were able to, hopefully it wouldn't be like in the Beanbean Kingdom where by the end of their adventure they only got a handful of coins for getting a million mushroom coins.

"Rubees? Oh, I don't believe we carry any of that particular currency…" Tippi said.

"If it's alright, can we pay with coins?" Peach asked. "What's the exchange rate for these and Rubees, anyway?"

Mimi looked appalled at this, as if they just spat on her great-grandmother's ashes. "Coins?! No one uses COINS anymore, you peasants! I SPIT on your coins! …So what are you saying? Are you telling me you don't have any Rubees at all?"

Mario had a sudden feeling of fear in his gut. "Yeah?"

"Well, guess what? You're just gonna have to work it off, then!" Mimi yelled. "Until you work off your debt, you naughty little things, I OWN YOU! ENJOY LABOR!" She paused. "Yes, so, you can earn Rubees in the generator room on the top floor. Once you earn 1,000,000 Rubees, you can come pay it off in the room at the back. You can also check the balance of your debt there. So! Get to work, servants!"

"…Please tell me this is a dream." Mario said. They did not just turn into slaves. No… they couldn't have… They tried to go out the previous door, but it was locked. And the next door only led them to the room where they could pay off their debt.

"Ok… let's try to rationalize this." Peach said. "It probably won't take too long to get all of the Rubees, right? Let's see how we're gonna work them off."

Mario and Peach went up to the second floor. They went into the first door they could find. It was a small room, with a few inmates, a guard, and a question mark block. Peach walked up to one of the inmates.

"Hey, new gerbil. You wanna learn a little secret?" The inmate asked. "Yeah, I betcha you do… Just slip me 100 Rubees. I'll tell ya somethin' good. Honest. It's prime info."

"Sorry, but I can't." Peach responded. "You see-"

"What, you don't trust me?" The inmate questioned. "You must lead a sad little gerbil life if you can't trust people."

Meanwhile, Mario went over to the guard. "Hello, what's in this room?"

"You must be new here." The guard said. "This 'ere block will give you a Mushroom and get your energy back up! Just bash that block there to produce a suspicious…er, delicious…Mushroom. Each one costs 10 Rubees, mind you! But that's how I make my living, so pay up!"

"Ok, thanks for telling me." Mario responded. After that, he and Peach left the room, and then went to the next floor. They walked over to the nearest door and walked into the room.

"JUMP, LITTLE FLEAS!" A guard yelled, as soon they happened to walk in. Up ahead was a raised platform. Many inmates were on it, jumping on blocks that generated some kind of power source.

"Work those skinny little flea legs!" The guard continued. "Unh! Make it burn! Jump like you mean it! Boss Mimi hates the dark like she hates brussels sprouts! So WORK IT! MORE POWER!"

Mario and Peach walked past the platform and over to the guard. "So what do we do in this room?" Mario asked.

"Yeah, this is the generator room. Hit blocks, make energy, and earn Rubees!" The guard answered. "Rubees make the world go up, down, 'round and 'round! You two wanna work here too?"

"Yes, we do." Peach said. Though they didn't really have much of a choice…

"LOVE the energy, kids!" The guard responded. "Just find an unused block and jump like you mean it! Another day, another Rubee! When you're done jumping, come talk to me. I'll tell you how many Rubees you earned. Oh! And watch out for our "motivational sparks" that travel along the floor!" The guard also warned.

Mario and Peach hopped onto the platform and found two unused blocks. When they jumped and hit them, a small speck of energy ran onto a small wire, which traveled upward.

Hey, this wouldn't be so hard…


A little bit later, Timmy and Junior were now near Timmy's house. The two hid behind a tree, as they both looked at the house.

"Are we going in there?" Junior asked.

"Nope." Timmy said. "Jorgen might have erased everyone's memory of me, but I know there's one thing he didn't erase." He ran over to the mailbox, Junior following behind.

"And what's that?" Junior asked.

"The Timmy Cave!" Timmy answered. He pressed a small, almost invisible button on the mailbox. At that, the ground opened up, and a pole rose out of the ground. "Come on!" He jumped onto the pole, and then slid down it. A second later, Junior did the same.

The Timmy Cave was in fact a cave, obviously. It was big, and there was a big platform with a lot of high-tech equipment, the most impressive being the big computer. Timmy jumped off the pole while he was still sliding down it, landing on the chair by the computer. He spun around a couple of times, and then brought the chair to the computer.

Junior then finished sliding down the pole, and then walked up to Timmy. "So, what exactly are we doing?"

"A while ago I installed a tracking device in my fairies." Timmy explained. "And I knew it would pay off someday." He inputted a search into the computer for his fairies' tracking devices. And the search pointed him to… "Las Vegas." Timmy said. "That's not a problem."

Junior had looked around the cave, taking in its sights. It all seemed so incredible to him. But then, while looking closer to the ground, he saw something that made his eyes widen. He never would've expected to see it here. But no… she was here. Lying down on the floor, unconscious, was Violet Calico.

Junior quickly turned to Timmy, who had pressed a button on the chair to give himself a soda. "Uh, Timmy?" Junior asked.

"Yeah?" Timmy answered with a question, after taking a sip of the soda.

"There's… someone else here." Junior said.

At this, Timmy's eyes widened and he promptly spat out the next sip of soda he was currently taking. "What? Where?" Timmy hopped off of the chair.

"She's… over here." Junior said. Timmy followed Junior over to where he was walking, and indeed there was someone there.

She was a young woman around 19. Shoulder length brown hair, green eyes, fair and white skin, a scar on her left cheek, wearing a purple hat with a snowflake on it, a purple shirt, a purple skirt, and finally, purple shoes.

"Who is she?" Timmy questioned.

"She's-" Junior's answer was interrupted as Violet abruptly started to stir.

The young woman's eyes slowly began to open, as most of her memories started to come back to her, though there was a small gap at one point from a couple days ago for some reason. Her vision slowly started to clear up, and then she saw the two figures in front of her. One of them was a human kid, and the other one was-

Wait. Junior.

In the brief moment that she was still getting her thoughts together, many questions ran through her mind. Why was she here? Who was this kid? And why was this kid with Junior?

In an instant, she stood up, and then from her hands she shot purple ice directly at Junior. Thankfully, the young koopa's reflexes were on point, and he sprawled to the ground, avoiding the ice, which hit the cave wall. At that, Junior and Violet glared at each other. Their glares were intense, and it intensified when Junior stood up.

"Uh, guys?" Timmy asked. But his question was ignored.

"What are you doing here?" Violet and Junior both said.

"I don't know how I got here, but I'd love to get away from you!" Violet yelled.

"Well, I know how I got here, and I want to do the same!" Junior yelled.

"GUYS!" Timmy yelled, running in between Junior and Violet to avoid things getting even worse, after what happened last time. "Can I get an explanation here? Who are you? And why do you hate each other?"

"Um, who are you?" Violet asked.

"Oh, I'm Timmy Turner." Timmy answered. "Pleased to meet you, uhh…"

"Violet. It's Violet."

"Right. Violet." Timmy and Violet shook hands. "So, now can you explain? Did you come from the same place he did?"

"I'll answer your questions, as long as you answer mine." Violet said.

"Sure, I don't see a problem with that. Depending on what the questions are, though." Timmy said.

"Okay." Violet said. "So, he's one of my sworn enemies, and yet you two are buddy-buddy with each other. Care to explain?"

Timmy and Junior looked at each other with nervousness, both of them remembering last night. "Well…" Junior started, unsure of what to say.

"We made an agreement that I would help him get back home if he helped me with whatever I was doing, and though we had a couple disagreements we worked it out in the end." Timmy quickly explained.

"Yep! That's exactly what happened!" Junior quickly agreed.

Violet thought on this for a moment. It did surprise her that they were able to get along. Though, what was Timmy doing?

Before Violet could ask her next question, Timmy asked one first. "So do you know how you ended up here? Junior said he remembered something about a wedding and maybe you can fill in some of the details?"

Violet's memory of what happened at the wedding and shortly before that shot through her like a bullet. All of it seemed to culminate into one big event for her. "So… this will be hard to explain… I need to give a little bit of backstory first."

Violet cleared her throat. "So, I live in a world that's most likely not this one. I've been living with two men named Mario and Luigi for almost a year or so. And sometimes we have to rescue a Princess named Peach, though she used to go by Toadstool. Anyway, we have to save her from Bowser, who's his father." She pointed at Junior when she said that.

"And we hate her the most because she has ice powers, which counteracts our ice powers." Junior butted in.

"Like I was saying…" Violet continued. "Yesterday we thought it was just gonna be another day to rescue Peach. But apparently, she wasn't there. Some guy called Count Bleck took her, and he did who knows what to Mario. I'm not even sure if he's still alive… Anyway, he took everyone else, and then when Luigi and I woke up, we were at some wedding that was forcing Bowser and Peach to get married by Count Bleck. And Luigi tried to stop them, but… I'm not sure what happened then."

"Wow. That's complicated." Timmy commented.

"I don't even get half of it myself." Violet said. She paused for a moment. "Do you have anything to drink?"

"Oh, yeah, sure." Timmy said. He ran to the soda he had, grabbed it, and brought it to Violet. She took it, and then took a long sip of it.

"Thanks." Violet said. "Now, can you explain just what's going on with you?"

"Oh, sure." Timmy said. He thought for a second on where to start. "So, basically, there's this big black swirling cloud in the sky called The Darkness, and there's a prophecy where I have to find a wand to stop it and there's a really vague riddle and yeah, that's it."

"What's the riddle?" Violet asked.

"It's: The wand is hidden in a rock and sealed with a kiss. I hardly know what it means at all, though one idea I had about it being in a statue was not right. At all." Timmy explained.


"Well, we're kinda now on the run from the police for being statue smashers." Junior explained.

"And we got mistaken for quarter thieves." Timmy added.

Violet raised an eyebrow. It seemed like Junior was starting to rub off on this kid… Though she kept her suspicions up for now, she kept them hidden. "Well, since I don't really know how to get back to the Mushroom Kingdom, for now, I'll help you stop The Darkness by any means necessary."

"Really?" Timmy asked, hardly believing it.

"You bet!" Violet said. "Just as long as you keep him in check." She was referring to Junior.

"Oh, don't worry, I'll… be able to." Timmy answered. Junior shot a small glare at Violet for a moment, though she didn't notice it.

"So, what do we do now?" Junior asked. Both him and Violet looked at Timmy, since he knew the most about Earth out of the three of them.

"Well, before we found you, I already had the perfect thing in mind." Timmy said, running back to the computer. "Cause I have the Turner Cycle!" He pressed a button on said computer, revealing a motorcycle coming up from the ground. Timmy ran over to the motorcycle and hopped on it, shortly followed by Violet and Junior.

"Uh, are you sure you know how to ride this?" Violet asked, as a pathway extending upward rose out of the ground. However, Timmy ignored her question as he cheered, and then rode up the ramp, leaving behind a trail of fire.

They exited out of the garage, which had risen up to allow them to leave. They were soaring in the air, ready to take on whatever stood in their way… until they immediately crashed into the back of a MERF vehicle, which had recently parked there.

In the vehicle itself, there was a bunch of high-tech equipment. Employee White had been trying to listen in on the previous conversation, and Employee Black had been watching. But their attention was immediately diverted to the trio as soon as they crashed in there.

"Well, well." Employee Black said. "Looks like you came right to us."

"And they brought an extra." Employee White added. "Wait a minute…" He grabbed a nearby folder and started sifting through it. "That woman… she's one of the people from the unsolved missing persons case about a year ago. She's no alien."

"Very well then." Black said. "Now they won't be disappointed that they let us take this case." He picked up his phone and dialed a number. "We've got the girl on the famous missing persons case. No, her father's not here, just her. Yah-huh. Take her to her home in Barstow, Nevada. When will you be here? Now?"

Not a second later, two burly men stormed into the vehicle, and rushed over to Violet. "Wait a minute! Y-You can't-" She was interrupted when the men grabbed her arms. "Hey! Put me down! Let me go!"

No matter how much she struggled, she could not break free of their iron-like grip. The two men brought her to another vehicle, where they threw her in the back, and locked the door. They got into the vehicle and drove, separating Violet from everyone once again, just as she was reunited with someone she would tolerate and rather be with much more than those men.

"And as for you two…" Employee Black said.

"You can't keep us locked up here!" Junior yelled. "I-I'll fight you!"

"Ha, that's cute." Employee White said. "You wanna know what we're going to do with you?"

"Uh, yeah?" Timmy asked, a little unnerved.

"Well… think fast!" Employee White yelled. As he said that, he threw a bomb and Timmy and Junior, while the two agents quickly put on gas masks. Though the bomb didn't hurt them, it did release a noxious gas into the room that they had no choice to breath. And, Timmy and Junior soon found out its effects.

"Ha!" White laughed. "It's sleeping gas. Always works on punks like you…" Timmy and Junior couldn't help but feel drowsy. Though they tried to stay awake, the gas soon overtook them, and they both fell asleep…

Chapter Text

The MERF vehicle had been driving along the road for a little while. Though, what the agents hadn't realized is that Timmy was slowly starting to wake up. But in case of the kids did wake up, they had taken some extra precautions.

When Timmy's vision cleared up, he saw that he was now in a cage. When he tried to rub his eyes, he saw that there was an electric bracelet on his right arm, which was connected to the same kind of bracelet on Junior's left arm. Timmy raised an eyebrow at this, and tried to grab the thin strip that connected the bracelets. But to his surprise, as soon as he touched it, it let out an electric shock. Electricity coursed through both of their bodies, the sensation stopping once he let go of the bracelet.

This action inevitably woke up Junior, who was dazed and confused. He quickly glanced around with a wide look on his face. But upon noticing the bracelet, he was about to grab it.

"Don't grab it!" Timmy quickly said. At that, they heard laughing from White.

"Well, looks like you two are finally awake." White said with a smirk. "And just in time, too." The MERF vehicle had just finished driving to the MERF facility. Employee White easily picked up the cage by its handle.

"Don't try and get through the bars, or you'll get shocked." Black warned. "And I'm sure you've already figured out the bracelet. It can only be unlocked with the key that I've got hanging around my neck." He smirked.

"Where are you taking us?" Timmy questioned in anger.

"Well, if you must know, we're taking you to a cell where you'll be contained for several hours until we interrogate you, and then dissect you." Black explained. When they got to the door, both Black and White held their badges up to an ID scanner. After a few moments, the scanner accepted the IDs, and let them in.

They walked down several hallways, each one more twisting and winding than the last. But soon, they were at a door. This one was different than the other ones; there were at least 10 different codes needed to open the door. The two agents took a couple minutes to enter the codes, setting the cage down for a moment. But when that door opened, and Black picked up the cage, Timmy and Junior saw something that would be etched into their minds forever.

In cells… were more of those monsters with gems attached to them. Each monster was different than the last, but all of them were horrifying. They were banging on the unbreakable glass that kept them in their cells, constantly moaning and screaming. Each one looked to be in incredible pain.

"You know, it's funny…" White said. "A couple days ago, one of these somehow managed to escape, and then we just happened to find you two, who could fit this cell perfectly!"

Junior and Timmy looked at each other in fear. Neither one of them was able to say anything. They were both shaking in fear. Would the agents set one of these creatures on them? Or just to be sadistic, would they set them in a cell with another one?

But their questions were silently answered. The two agents soon came to a cell where the glass had been completely shattered. The shards of glass on the floor haven't even been cleaned up; they were just still there.

"You two are gonna stay in here for a couple hours until we interrogate you." Black said. "Don't try to escape, not that you could." At that, he threw the cage into the cell, not caring if the occupants inside it got injured. And then, the two agents walked away.

There was no silence for Timmy and Junior. The screaming of the monsters was constant, and sometimes they would scratch the glass.

"A couple hours?" Timmy suddenly said incredulously. "We can't wait that long! What if The Darkness comes to Earth? What if the Eliminators get here?" Timmy looked at Junior. His breaths were slow. Eyes wide. And then…

"I need to get out of here!" Junior suddenly yelled. He tried to claw at the bars of the cage, only for the electricity to activate, shocking them both.

"Hey, stop!" Timmy yelled. Junior's breaths became short. No… no… this couldn't be happening. His heart was beating faster and faster. His vision became blurry. And Timmy knew why. Timmy turned Junior around, and saw that the young koopa was crying. Tears flowed out of his eyes.

"Hey, what's wrong?" Timmy asked in concern. Junior didn't answer at first. But then, he broke down. Despite the bracelet, he grabbed Timmy and pulled him into a tight hug and started crying even harder.

"I…I want to go home!" Junior wailed. "I miss my dad, I miss my siblings, I miss everyone!" He kept crying for who knows how long, while Timmy comforted him.

"Look, in no time, we'll be out of here, we'll defeat The Darkness, and we'll find your way back home!" Timmy said. However, at the moment, Junior thought differently.

"No we won't…"

"Why not?" Timmy asked.

"Did you hear what they said they were gonna do to us?" Junior asked. "They're going to dissect us! And there's no way we'll be able to get out of here! We have these bracelets, we're in this cage, how will we be able to do it!?"

Timmy thought for a moment. And then, he smiled. "One of them has the key to these bracelets. They're probably gonna bring us out of the cage for the interrogation, and when they do, we're gonna get the key and get out of there."

"How do you know it'll work?" Junior asked.

"To be honest, I'm not sure if it'll work. There may be some unforeseen part that I might've forgotten." Timmy explained. "But that doesn't matter. We will get out of here, and we're going to do it together."

"You really think so?" Junior asked.

"I know so." Timmy smiled.

All in all, it had been about 3 hours before they were taken for interrogation. They hadn't really done much. But they did wait there; waiting in dread for the time the interrogation would come. Because they knew that the small plan they came up with was highly unlikely to work. But that didn't stop them in believing that they would get out of there.

The same two agents came to pick them up. Once they got to the interrogation room, the cage was opened and they were forced out of there. Now, they had to sit in chairs next to each other while still having the bracelets on. And then, the interrogation had begun.

"You two are in a lot of trouble." White stated. He grabbed a folder of records, and addressed Timmy. "Because according to our records, you have no records. You don't exist!"

"And as for you…" Black addressed Junior. "You're some kind of alien turtle thing, I don't know. And that's why you're at the Military Extra Terrestrial Research Facility. Short for MERF." He took a sip of his coffee.

Junior was unnerved at that comment. To be fair, that agent was right. He was an alien to this world…

"We aren't aliens!" Timmy quickly defended. White laughed in amusement, and got out a couple pictures.

"Well, these pictures of you in a hovercar yesterday being chased through Dimmsdale by a shapeshifting man-bot suggest otherwise." White put the pictures in full view of the two kids. "While you could pass off for a human, that other one clearly isn't. I mean just look at him!" He burst into laughter.

"And these photos were taken a couple hours ago." Black spread out several photos on the desk, showing photos of the Eliminators. Timmy quickly grabbed one of them, and then, he froze for a moment at seeing what they were.

"Wait, the Eliminators are back?" Timmy questioned. This also surprised Junior, as he thought that the Eliminators had stopped chasing them. But the agents didn't really care, as agent White held up some scissors.

"If I were you, I would surrender right now and let us start dissecting you." Black warned. At this, Junior froze up.

"We. Are. Not. Aliens!" Timmy practically screamed.

"Oh you think this is a joke? Huh? You think we're idiots?" White questioned. "Well, I've got news for ya. They wouldn't give high tech neural stun rays to idiots." He reached under the desk and grabbed that exact weapon, and then slammed it on the desk, proving his point.

"Or laser blasters able to cut through concrete walls five feet thick." Black added, as he reached under the desk and put THAT exact weapon on the desk. "Or one of these fancy keys that would unbind you two from each other."

White took a set of keys out. "And you sure don't get a super spy car with a trunk full of spy gadgets unless you know what you're doing!" He set the keys down, and did a little victory dance with Black. "Ok, let's just get the dissection over with."

"Oh, no you're not." Timmy said boldly. Junior looked at him with a bit of fear, but once he saw Timmy's look of determination, it mostly went away. Then, a moment later, Timmy and Junior both jumped off the chairs they were sitting on, and ran toward the agents.

They jumped on the table and tried to grab one of the weapons, but the agents got to them first. Thinking quickly, Junior grabbed the cup of coffee and threw it at Black's face, blinding him for a moment.

"AHHH! WHY MUST YOU BETRAY ME, COFFEE!" Black screamed, as he lay there on the floor, finding no way to get the coffee off his face. White quickly shot the stun ray at the two kids, but they quickly jumped forward out of the way.

"The key!" Junior yelled. They both ran over to the downed agent, and Timmy grabbed the key. Doing the first thing he could think of, he pushed the key onto the rope binding the two bracelets. Not a second later, the key, and what binded them together instantly disappeared.

And then, White attempted to shoot the stun ray at them again, and they jumped in different directions. Timmy jumped toward the chairs, and Junior jumped toward the desk. Agent White decided to focus his attention on Timmy, and kept trying to shoot at him.

While White was distracted with Timmy, Junior took this chance to get a surprise attack in. He saw that Timmy was hiding behind the chairs, and his luck would run out soon. This was his chance.

Junior tucked into his shell and started to spin around. At a moment's notice, he suddenly flung himself at White. At collision, White yelled in surprise, fell to the ground, and dropped to the ground. Junior landed next to Timmy and quickly got out of his shell.

"Quick! Try to blast a hole in the wall!" Timmy yelled, pointing to the laser blaster. Junior ran over to it, while Timmy grabbed the stun ray and aimed it at White. He fired it before White could get up.

"Warning. Low battery. Energy conversion mode activated. Thank you for using MERF Tech, and remember to have a nice day.The stun ray's robotic voice said. Timmy noticed that it was telling the truth, as he saw the effects on the agent already slowly starting to dissipate.

"Oh come on!" Timmy yelled.

Meanwhile, Junior had grabbed the laser blaster and aimed it at the wall. The laser slowly cut away at the wall as he slowly drew a circle on it. But a second later, agent Black got back up.

"I don't think so." Black said. Junior gasped and turned his head around, just in time to see Black reaching for him. Junior growled and swiped his claws at Black, forcing the agent to step back a little.

Seeing Junior was in trouble, Timmy quickly ran over, still holding the stun ray. He shot the stun ray at Black, freezing the agent. Though it wouldn't last long, it would buy them enough time to get out of the facility.

Junior just finished the circle, making a huge circular hole in the wall that immediately fell over. Timmy quickly grabbed the set of keys, and as that happened, the effects of the stun ray wore off. Timmy and Junior ran out of the building as fast as they could, the agents chasing after them several seconds later.

"Get back here!" Black yelled. Timmy and Junior didn't listen to them, though, as they ran as fast as they could to the spy car.

"Don't get in that car!" White added. Though, that's what they both did. Timmy quickly opened the door, and closed it after they both got in, the two agents only yards away from the car.

"Do you know how to drive this?" Junior panicked.

"Uh, I think." Timmy quickly responded. He put the key in the ignition and then stepped on the gas, driving the two of them away from the agents a second before they reached the car.

"What do we do now?" Black asked.

"We're gonna catch those two punks, and then send reinforcements." White answered. He sighed. "They're not going to be happy about this." He dialed a number on his phone.

Now that the two kids had successfully gotten away, they could refocus on getting back to their missions. Find Cosmo, Wanda, and Violet, stop the Darkness, and find a way to get Junior back home.

The car was speeding away from Dimmsdale, with Timmy driving it. Thankfully, there weren't any other cars on the road.

"Now to track Cosmo and Wanda by linking this computer to the Timmy Cave super computer." Timmy said as he pressed some buttons on the car, showing a GPS.

"How'd you do that?" Junior asked.

"I'm not too sure, I just pressed some buttons." Timmy answered. As they sped out of Dimmsdale, they passed by the parked MARF Machine, its occupants walking from behind three cacti with pained looks on their faces.

"Word to the wise, don't wipe with cactus." Crocker said.

"I think I just saw that street urchin and someone else speeding ahead of us." Tamara pointed out.

"Wow, that street urchin sure makes friends fast!" Terrance said. "Also now that I think about it, the way our vehicle is purple and the way those cacti are green remind of something."

"Like that street urchin?" Tamara asked.

"Yeah!" Terrance answered.

"You know, all of this talk about this is confusing me." Crocker said. "For starters, it's fairly odd that the street urchin thought you were his parents… And I'm getting bored. Let's MARF!"

Terrance and Tamara cheered as the three of them ran into the MARF Machine and drove off.

Meanwhile, at that same gas station that kid was at, the Eliminators had decided to take a break and order some food, though the Lead Eliminator was less willing to. A waitress walked over and gave them each a glass of water.

"What'll it be, fellas?" The waitress asked, ready to take their orders.

"Do you have any uranium?" The Lead Eliminator asked.

The waitress paused in disbelief when she heard that. "Uh, no." She narrowed her eyes. At this, the Lead Eliminator stood up, and took off his shades in rage. His eyes were glowing red, but before anything could happen one of the other Eliminators butted in.

"We'll have the chicken fingers." Another Eliminator said.

"That's fine." The waitress wrote down their order and headed back to the kitchen.

"You guys look totally stupid." The Lead Eliminator pointed out to the other two.

"That's because you're stupid." One of the other Eliminators retorted. That Eliminator tried to drink his water, but the vortex he was sucking it into inadvertedly sucked in half of the gas station, even tearing off part of the wall.

"Next time use a straw, will ya?" The Lead Eliminator asked. On a TV that was hanging only by a cord, a newscast came on, featuring Chet Ubetcha.

"This is Chet Ubetcha on the convenient news network." The anchorman said. "The quarter theives/statue smashers are on the loose!" The TV showed a picture of Timmy and Junior. "And they were last seen heading toward Las Vegas! But just like all the stars being gone from the sky, the government assures us there's nothing to be worried about."

"Let's go to Vegas." The Lead Eliminator said. A moment later, they took off. The waitress happened to walk out of the kitchen at that moment, holding the plate of chicken fingers. Her eyes widened in shock at the state of the restaurant.

One of the pink-shirted Eliminators came back for the chicken fingers, and took them. "Do you have any ranch dressing?" He asked. The waitress screamed and ran in fear, while the Eliminator returned to follow his comrades

The vehicle containing Violet had just dropped her off at her house, albeit a bit roughly. And then, the vehicle sped off. Violet got a good look at her house. From the outside, it seemed to be completely abandoned. It hadn't been kept up with, though she did notice some of the windows had been boarded up.

She wondered if she should even go in, or head back to try to find Timmy. But… a quick look inside wouldn't hurt… right? No, it wouldn't. After all, the house was abandoned.

Violet tried to open the front door, but found it very difficult to do so. Was it locked? She gave it another hard shove and nearly fell into the house as the door roughly opened. She hardly remembered this house at all, but some memories of it came back to her.

The front of the house led to some stairs, though on the left side there was a room, and on the right side there was a hallway. Violet decided to go to the room on the left first.

The room itself was big. It didn't have a door to lead to it for some reason, though. She walked around, noting the furniture and seeing if she could remember any of it. While there was some memory of it, it felt really blurry, and there were a lot of gaps in it with stuff she couldn't recall. But she chose not to focus on that right now. She walked into the next room, which looked like the dining room. Not really much to see in here, so she went to the door and went into the next room.

This room was the kitchen. She didn't bother to see if there was any food in here, because it was all probably old by now. She quickly walked out of the kitchen through another door, which led into the hallway on the right side of the house.

In the right hallway, there were two doors. One of them led into a bathroom, and the other room… She couldn't open the door. She literally couldn't no matter how hard she pulled or tugged on it. It was either stuck or locked. So she moved on and went upstairs, noting that there was a small table next to the stairs.

As she walked upstairs, each step creaked under the weight of her feet. For a moment, she thought that the steps would break under her weight, but she pushed that thought to the back of her head. A few moments later, she was at the top of the steps.

There was a door to the immediate left of her, that when she tried to open, it was locked. Sighing, she moved onto the next door. It was another bathroom. Nothing important there. She walked down the next hallway and saw two more doors.

The first door, which was straight ahead of her, contained a small room. She forgot whom it belonged to. The room itself smelled though, and she could tell why. There were clothes that had been sitting there. And it didn't take a smart person to see that there was mold in the room.

She shut the door as quickly as she could, trying not to throw up from the smell. After a minute of trying to regain her composure, she took a deep breath and walked into the next room, and she remembered which room it was.

Her own room.

She cautiously walked in, just in case. But she quickly reminded herself that there was no one here…

Wait a minute.

Why was the house empty? Where was… her family? So many questions and yet she had answers for none of them.

She took a look around in her room. But… it was empty. She could see where the furniture used to be. Though… why was it empty? Yet another question without an answer. The closet door was closed… was there anything in there?

She walked closer to it. She paused, and grabbed the handle of the door. It didn't budge. Determined, she pulled harder. She didn't want any more locked doors to elude her. After a few moments of furious pulling, it finally opened.

And it was pitch black. She felt around for a light switch, and after a few moments, she found it. She was surprised it worked, considering the state of the house. But she soon regretted what she saw.

There… were small splotches of blood on the walls… oh no… That was what broke the straw on the camel's back. Violet couldn't hold it back. She threw up in the closet. She hadn't eaten in a while, so it wasn't much.

After that was over with, she coughed a couple times. Due to the low brightness of the light, she couldn't see that much in the closet. But there was something that intrigued her. It looked to be two picture of a triangle, the left one having one wheel around it and the other having two.

When she tried to get closer to see more clearly, the light suddenly shut off. She took that as her cue to quickly get out of the closet; she wasn't sure what would happen if she stayed in there, but she didn't want to find out.

After she got out of the closet, she closed it. And then, she walked out of the room. Would it be best to get out of the house now and try to find Timmy? After all, she already looked at every room she could…

Except for two. The one right in front of her… She felt like she had to open it. And if she did, she would get the answers to all of her questions. She tightly gripped the doorknob. She would open the door, no matter what.

But no matter how much she pulled, it would not open. She would have to take drastic measures. Using her ice powers, she summoned a purple ice hammer, ready to bash in the door. She raised it above her head, having no regrets.

But a second before she brought it down… there was a loud creak at the front door. She paused. Just what was that? Maybe she should check. The door could wait another couple seconds.

She walked over to where she could see the door from the upstairs. It was wide open. But then, something she never expected would happen.

Violet felt a presence behind her. Something whispered something into her ear.

"It's nice to see you, hero…"

And then, a hard push. Violet didn't even have time to think about it. She couldn't do anything about it. She roughly fell down the stairs, hitting the floor at the end of them. Ugh… her head hurt. And wait a minute… did she smell… blood?

But her attention was soon refocused. There was a small slip of paper under the table that she didn't notice before. She grabbed it, and read it.

" Dear Violet,

I've made some terrible mistakes. If you come back here, somehow, please DO NOT GO INTO THE ROOM TO THE LEFT AT THE TOP OF THE STAIRS, OR THE ROOM NEXT TO THE DOWNSTAIRS BATHROOM! Please, if you see this note, then just run. Run as far away as you can from here, and don't look back. I'll probably be dead by the time you come back, but just know this… Don't make deals with demons. I love you, Violet…

From, your father."

As she finished reading the note, the state of her body caught up to her. She was bleeding, she hadn't eaten, and her sleep wasn't that good either. And a moment later, she passed out, the note in her open palm.

Dimentio teleported above Violet's house, smiling. "Ah ha ha. I'm sure the count will be pleased with this. And I wonder what that new minion is up to…" He then disappeared.

Chapter Text

The two had been driving along the road for quiet a while now; they were in Nevada. Though their journey was long, it wasn't over yet.

"How much longer is it gonna be?" Junior asked.

"Well, according to the GPS, Cosmo and Wanda are right in front of me." Timmy said, looking at the GPS. "But I don't see-"

Timmy was interrupted because at that very moment, the gum versions of Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof suddenly slammed into the front window, blocking Timmy's view. At that, everyone screamed and the car swerved out of control, spinning around until it stopped on the side of the road.

A moment passed, and Junior checked himself for any injuries. And then, Timmy quickly opened the roof of the car. He saw the three fairies stuck on the window, so he peeled them off, and then they floated in the air.

"Cosmo! Wanda! Poof!" Timmy cheered. "I missed you guys so much!" He jumped up to hug them, though after a few moments, he realized that they were in fact made of gum, and got off of them. "Wait, you're gumballs?"

Poof happened to detach from Cosmo at that moment, and then started teething on Timmy's arm. "And Poof's still teething? Ugh!" He shook Poof off of his arm.

"Um… have they always been gum?" Junior asked.

"Hey, who's that kid?" Cosmo asked.

"No, they're not always like that because Jorgen said they had to protect them," Timmy said, answering Junior's question. "And this kid's name is Junior."

"Wait, protect us?" Wanda asked. "From what?"

Timmy hopped off of the car, Junior following shortly behind. "Well, I'm not sure if this is gonna make any sense, but the Darkness is back." Timmy said.

"The Darkness is back!?" Cosmo and Wanda both yelled. At that, Cosmo popped and the three fairies fell into Timmy's open hands.

"Yes!" Timmy said. "You have to help me find an ancient white wand cause I'm the Chosen One, rescue a young woman called Violet, and help me get Junior to his dad!"

Cosmo and Wanda were silent for a moment. And to Timmy's surprise, they, including Poof, started laughing.

"Ok, the Darkness and Violet I can buy, but you as the Chosen One?" Wanda asked in disbelief, and then continued laughing.

"Hey! So far I've been an awesome Chosen One!" Timmy argued.

"And I bet Junior is just a kid in some costume!" Cosmo added, prompting the fairies to laugh again.

"Excuse me?" Junior frowned. He walked over to the three fairies in Timmy's hand. He was about to say something, but couldn't find the words.

"And I also suppose you want us to believe that the Eliminators are chasing you too?" Cosmo jokingly asked.

"Yes!" Timmy answered. "But they can't find me as long as you don't say my name."

"You mean TIMMY TURNER!" Cosmo yelled at the top of his lungs. A second later, the three Eliminators that had been chasing Timmy and Junior for a while just showed up behind them, and the two kids turned around.

Junior froze. "Crap…" He said. Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof's eyes widened as they realized that Timmy wasn't joking around with any of this. The Eliminators landed, and they immediately began firing their lasers at them.

Not wasting another second, Timmy and Junior quickly ran to the spy car and ducked behind it. Both of their hearts were pumping very fast with adrenaline with the lasers flew above them.

"I can't believe it's all gonna end while we hide behind this spy car full of cool weapons and gadgets!" Timmy yelled. After he said that, Junior remembered something.

"Wait, lemme see those keys!" Junior said. Timmy dug the keys out of his pocket and handed them to him. The young koopa looked at the key for a moment. On the key, there were three buttons. A blue 'lock' button, a green 'unlock' button, and finally, a red 'destroy' button.

Junior quickly pressed the destroy button. As soon as he did, the car transformed into a giant weapon of some sort. "Aw sweet!" Timmy cheered. He quickly jumped onto the seat, Junior also jumping on and sitting next to him.

Timmy quickly turned the weapon to face the Eliminators. And as quick as he could, he fired the weapon at them. All three of them were quickly encased in some kind of blue liquid that kept them suspended and unable to move.

"Awesome!" Timmy said. He looked to his fairies. "And now it's time to get you back to fairy form." He quickly popped his fairies in his mouth, and then blew them out one by one, the three of them now being bubbles. And then Timmy pulled on each of them, and they now assumed what their usual forms would look like, only they were still gum.

"There, back to normal." Timmy said. "Sorta…"

"I hate being gum. What happens if we break wind?" Cosmo asked in concern. When Poof happened to do so, a bubble appeared on his rear. "Cool! I like being gum!" Cosmo said, waving his arms around.

"Do not pop that bubble." Wanda deadpanned.

"So, do you know how to get them back to normal?" Junior asked.

"If we could find a wand, then they could poof themselves back to normal." Timmy answered. "So now we're going to have to find a wand."

Cosmo looked at Junior. "Wow… what exactly are you?"

"I…I'm a koopa. From the Mushroom Kingdom." Junior answered.

"Mushroom Kingdom?" Wanda questioned. "I can't say I've heard of that before."

"Look, we can all get explanations later." Timmy quickly said. "Right now, we need to find the Wand, and find Violet. Junior, could you hand me the keys."

Junior tossed the keys to Timmy, who then pressed the unlock button. That made the weapon morph into a motorcycle, which had just enough room for Timmy and Junior. They hopped on, and luckily enough there happened to be two helmets for them. They put the helmets on.

"And now let's go get Violet and the wand!" Timmy said. He prepared to drive the motorcycle, only for it to drive off without the two of them, leaving them to fall to the ground.

"You stink at riding motorcycles." Junior pointed out. After all, this was the third time this had happened.

As if their luck couldn't get any worse, several MERF agents happen to close in above them in jets. In one of the jets, agent White stood up and aimed a freeze ray at them.

"Freeze, quarter-stealing, statue-smashing, spy car thieves!" Agent White yelled, as Timmy and Junior took off their helmets.

"And now you've got bigger problems!" Cosmo said, which didn't help. A second later, the Darkness itself arrived, everyone getting a full view of it.

"And even bigger problems!" Timmy added. A bubble appeared on Cosmo's rear.

"Don't pop that either." Wanda said.

The now double threat of MERF and The Darkness loomed over them, leaving them with one question. Just what were they going to do?

It was dark.

Just what had happened? Wait, now she remembered. She had been at her house, and was searching around, before-


She heard something.

It was… nearly undecipherable. Was it… footsteps? 

Violet strained her ears to try and hear more. Yes, it was footsteps. But where were they coming from? And whom did they belong to? 

There was a small light. It was ahead of her. She walked away from it. She knew better.

But then, the footsteps came faster, slowly turning into a full run; sounding like it was coming toward her. She swiveled around, turning to face the noise.

But the noise wasn't coming toward her… it was going… right beside her? Huh? Then there was something else. It was very quiet, almost nonexistent.

As the seconds seemed to crawl by, it became clearer and clearer. Scraping. Hard scraping. 

And then, it stopped.



All of the MERF agents had gotten out of their jets, and they were aiming their freeze rays at Timmy and Junior. The two stood still, anticipating an attack.

"Timmy Turner and Junior, we're placing you under arrest by order of MERF." Agent White stated. Timmy silently looked around to see if there was a way he could get out of this.

"Not to be confused with MARF." Agent Black said, which he then proved by pulling out two tickets to it. "Which we have tickets to tonight!"

Agent White walked up to Cosmo. "By the way, cool balloon animal thingies." He said, poking Cosmo a couple times.

At this point, Junior was beyond mad that they were practically ignoring what could be their death right above them. "Do you not see that giant swirling portal of death?" He screamed.

"Yeah!" Timmy added. He noticed that the wind was getting stronger, probably because of The Darkness. "Don't you want to do something to stop it? Call the general! Call the president!" He emphasized his point by grabbing Agent Black's shirt.

"Can't, they're all going to MARF." Agent Black said as Timmy let go of his shirt. "It's gonna be awesome!" He played an invisible guitar with Agent White.

Agent White held up a piece of paper that listed what bands were going to be played at MARF. "We're going to rock out to Crosby, Stills, & Ashes, Neil Not Young, Bachman-Turmer Over-The-Hill…"

"And the MARFiest band in the world…" Agent Black added. "KISS!" He gestured to a billboard that showed the KISS band members, with one of them holding a white guitar.

Timmy looked at the sign. Hang on a second… white wand… white guitar… hidden in a rock… KISS band…

It clicked.

"Find the White Wand…" Jorgen's words echoed in Timmy's mind. "It is hidden in a rock and…"

"Sealed with a kiss!" Timmy finished out loud. "The White Wand is at a guitar festival starring KISS!" He smiled. He had finally figured out the riddle.

"Nice work, Timmy!" Wanda cheered.

"Yeah, good job!" Cosmo added.

"Now let's get to that festival and stop the Darkness!" Junior said. At that, though the MERF agents changed their settings on their freeze rays from 'Destroy' to 'Freeze'.

"You punks aren't going anywhere." Agent Black threatened. He aimed his freeze ray at them.

"Any last words before you're freeze blasted and dissected?" Agent White questioned. He smiled.

"Yes." Timmy said, also with a smile. He had a plan. "Wanda, get ready to pop the bubbles!"

Wanda smiled, realizing Timmy's plan. Thankfully in Timmy's backpack, he found a couple of needles, one of them he gave to Wanda. Timmy and Wanda both popped one of the bubbles on Cosmo and Wanda, grabbed onto one of their arms with Junior grabbing onto Cosmo's arm. A second later, all of them soared into the air.

At that moment, the MERF agents happened to fire their weapons. Due to sheer luck, they happened to hit each other, freezing all of them.

The kids and fairies floated down to the frozen Agent Black. "Like I said before," Timmy said, swiping the freeze ray from the agent's exposed hand. "Don't mess with the Chosen One." He smirked.

They all went into one of the jets, moving quickly as the Darkness was above them. Junior made sure to close the opening after they were all in.

"And now to hit autopilot and get this hunk of MERF to MARF!" Timmy exclaimed. "Oh, Cosmo, Wanda, you wouldn't have happened to have seen a vehicle driving somewhere near this area earlier, would you?"

"Well actually, yes." Wanda said. "I do remember seeing a vehicle that looked like it was going toward an abandoned house."

"Then let's go there and then the MARF concert!" Timmy said. He hit the autopilot button on the jet and it took off into the air. Though what none of them realized, was that the fire from the jet ended up melting the liquid the Eliminators were suspended in, freeing them…

A moment later, they took off.

Oh god… He was so tired…

How long had he been doing this? How long had he been working his butt off just to pay off these Rubees? At least several hours…

But he hardly took any breaks at all. No, he couldn't take any breaks… No… he believed that this was the only way to pay it off. But was it, really?

Just jumping over and over again, it drove him mad after a while. He wasn't even sure if the Princess was still with him. He almost considered taking a small rest-

NO. He couldn't. He surely must be getting close to a million by now, right? He just had to do a little more…

But each jump seemed to fatigue him to a closer point of exhaustion. Was this where the convict on Gloam Valley escaped from? Well… now… he knew why…

And so, Mario finally fell asleep.

Peach sighed to herself. She shouldn't have let Mario drive himself to the point of exhaustion like that. She had to take him down to the room with the Mushroom block so he could sleep there. At least the guard allowed it.

When Peach asked the guard in the other room how many Rubees they made, the guard told them that they made around a several thousand… nowhere near close enough to pay Mimi off.

There had to be something more to this, there just had to be. It would take months for them to get to a million at this rate. She had to find another way… But where?

First, she checked back in the room where Mario was; also to check on the plumber. Hang on a sec… she remembered the guy that wanted 100 Rubees, and he was standing several feet away from her. Surely that guy might know something?

But before she did ask, Tippi spoke up. "I'm a little worried about Mario…" The butterfly said.

"Me too." Peach responded. "But I'm sure he'll be fine."

"Ok look, it's you again." The guy suddenly spoke up. "I suppose you don't have those 100 Rubees now?"

Peach turned to face him. "As a matter of fact, I do. Now will you tell me the 'prime info'?" Peach handed him the Rubees, and silently hoped she wasn't being scammed.

"Your mom taught you to trust strangers, huh?" The guy asked. "Yeah, solid parenting, right there. Well, turns out she was a smart cookie. I'm gonna give you the VIP room passcode. The secret code is…5963!"

"What's this code for?" Peach asked.

"What good is it? That's a secret! Duh! Just remember 5963, gerbil. Thank me later." The guy answered.

So Peach and Tippi went back up to the next floor. There were two rooms they hadn't gone in yet, though one of them needed a passcode. Peach was about to go into the free room, though Tippi said something first.

"Maybe that code will work on this…" Tippi said, floating near a security box. Peach walked over to it. It had a number pad, a small screen, and buttons to backspace, start, and cancel. Peach pressed the 'start' button and a small prompt popped up that read, "ENTER PASSCODE"

Peach quickly entered in '5963' into it, hoping it would work. And to her relief, it did. She went into the room, and it looked even more dangerous from the previous working room. Inmates were running in large wheels suspended from the ceiling.

"RUN, GERBILS!" The guard practically screamed. "Round and round and round she goes! When I'll retire, nobody knows! Big Boss Mimi hates the dark more than old ham! So move those gerbil legs! POWER UP!"

Peach walked over to the guard. "So… what exactly do we do in here?" She asked.

"This is the VIP generator room. Run in a wheel, make volts, earn some cash!" The guard answered. "Yeah, major upgrade from that other room! You'll earn crazy Rubees in here! So, a new gerbil, huh… Hungry for Rubees, gerbil? You wanna work here?"

"Yes, I'd like to work for a little while." Peach answered.

"Great, great, just hang on for one second for me… MOVE, GERBILS! MOVE!" The guard yelled. "Y'know, sometimes I wonder why I do this…but it's simple: work is fun! You ready?"

"Yep." Peach answered with a nod.

"Good answer! Now get in there, gerbil! Move!" The guard said. The wheel opened, and Peach quickly jumped in. And then it closed.

Peach ran for a bit, making some energy. She ran for about 10 to 15 minutes, but made sure she didn't tire herself out too much lest she pass out like Mario. After she got tired, the guard let her out of the wheel and gave her a little bit over a thousand Rubees.

This wasn't going to work. Even though she made Rubees more quickly, there would be no way she would be able to make enough. So what she decided to do was, she went into the next room to see if there was anything in there that could help her. She walked throughout the room and saw an inmate that looked to be out of the way, as if he was trying to be hidden.

"Fine timing, friend of mine!" The inmate suddenly said, but made sure only Peach could hear it. "I just got hold of some verrry delectable info! You're timely, so it's yours! I was gonna charge 10,001 Rubees, but for you…10,000! Sound good?"

"Sure…" Peach slowly said. She had just over 10,000 Rubees, and she handed them over.

"Thanks, buddy of mine!" The inmate said. "Listen, and listen good. Mimi was napping, OK? And I heard her start sleeptalking… And she whispered… 41262816… Think it's her boyfriend's phone number or something?"

Peach quickly walked away in a huff. Great. Just great. 10,000 Rubees. All wasted. Now wait a minute… could that be another code? Peach shook her head as she exited the room and faced the wall. She groaned to herself as Tippi fluttered over to the wall.

"I… feel as if there's something beyond this wall…" Tippi said.

Upon that, Peach used her power. And yes, there was something beyond the wall. There was a block that, when hit, created a ladder that went upward. Peach climbed up the ladder… only to find that the upward hallway was blocked off by moving lasers. An inmate was up there, and she walked up to him.

"I smell Rubees up ahead… and lot's of 'em!" The inmate explained. "But see these electrified barriers? They'll turn you into Roast Gerbil Surprise! If only I had me one of them "slenderizing" Pixls I heard about! You heard of them? If you use one of 'em, you turn sideways, which makes you practically invisible! And to think there's one of them things stashed somewhere in this mansion…"

Then she thought of something. If the 3rd floor hallway had a secret behind the wall, why not the second floor? So she ran down to the second floor and used her power again to get behind the wall.

And behind it, was a huge chest. One that would contain another Pixl. And so Peach opened it.

"Know the secret?" The pixl whispered, still in the chest. And then, a moment later, it popped out. "'CUZ I DO!" The Pixl looked like an upside down triangle, divided into three sections. The Pixl's name was Slim.

"So, do ya know the secret, pard? Well? Do ya?" Slim asked. "Iffen you close yer peepers… and imagine real hard… that the world's gone… Why, it's just about the biggest dern thrill ever! WHUH-HUH? My senses are tellin' me that you're one of the heroes!"

One of the heroes? Peach was about to question Slim on this but he kept going. "Hey, welcome, pard. Got some bad news, though. Looks to me like yer a bit lackin' in thrills. I can't give my power to anyone who's too skinny in the thrills department. So here's what we do, pard! I'll recharge yer thrill gauge over the next ten seconds!"

Peach raised an eyebrow.

"You ready? Here goes!" Slim said. "ONE! TWO! THREE! FIVE! FOUR! SEVENTEEN! THREE-POINT-ONE-FOUR! ONE MARZILLION! TEN!" Slim floated above the chest. "Now yer all chargified, pard! Yepper, now you've got yer thrills! Now remember, we Pixls got loads of power, so you'd best be real careful with us! We had a little dustup with them Ancients 2,000 years ago…but we're pards now. So let's go have us some thrills, huh? C'mon!"

Slim floated around Peach for a couple moments. And like what happened with Boomer, Slim now replaced him as the active partner. And now, Peach knew exactly where to go next.

She headed back up to where the electrified barriers were, and used Slim while standing close to them. The Pixl allowed her to pass through the moving barriers as long as she was standing still. And when she got past the barriers, she found a safe that needed a code to be opened.

Wait a minute… Peach inputted the code that the inmate told her earlier. To her surprise, it worked. And there were a million Rubees in there. Not one less, and not one more. She had exactly one million.

After making sure she and Tippi had all of them, Peach went back down to the room she left Mario in and woke him up. At first, Mario woke up slowly, until Peach told him that she got all 1 million Rubees. Mario was both shocked and relieved at this, and told Peach that they should go ahead and pay it off.

They walked into the loan room, and Mimi was there behind the desk, ready to greet them.

"Oh, hi there! Big welcome! So happy to have you here at Rubee Savings and Loan!" Mimi said. Mario and Peach walked up to the front desk. "First off, THANKS for taking out a special Rubee loan! Now, what can I do for you?"

"We'd like to pay off some Rubees." Mario answered.

"Super! Let me just take all those Rubees off your hands!" Mimi said. Peach gave her the Rubees. "There you go!"

A number counter counting down from 1 million was on the wall. After Peach handed Mimi the Rubees, the number quickly went down, all the way until it hit 0.

"Well, thank you SO much for paying off your Rubee loan in…full…?" Mimi said, at first cheerfully, until she realized how much they paid off. "WHAT? How did you earn enough Rubees to pay it off? That's not supposed to happen! No… You've broken my wonderful curse!"

Strangely enough, Mimi began to rise in the air, and it looked to be not of her own will. "I'LL GET YOU!" She screamed. There was a burst of light, and Mimi had a pained looked on her face.

And a moment later, Mimi exploded, surprising the group. Thankfully, there wasn't any gore. It was just random pieces of her body that flew everywhere. And then, behind some bars that were in the room, they saw a trapdoor open.

"So, that young imp put a curse on this mansion, then…" Tippi said. "But who was she, really?"

"Now we know Merlee didn't do any of this." Peach added. "I'm getting really worried about her… Hmm… maybe she could be through that trapdoor."

"Then let's go down there and find her." Mario said. "Also, Peach, how did you get all 1 million Rubees so quickly."

"Tippi and I found a safe thanks to Slim." Peach explained.

Ok, so that's who the new Pixl was. Mario took a breath before he and the others used Slim to go to the basement, getting closer to their search for Merlee…

Chapter Text

The Mysterious handmaid Mimi disappeared in a bizarre explosion…

What exactly was her plan, and why did she try to enslave Mario and friends?

After the incident, they took the stairs going down. "Here we go!" Peach said.

" I wonder if Merlee is down here?" Mario asked as the group exchanged worried glances…

They solemnly made their way down, knowing there was no other path to follow.

As the group entered the basement, they could see how it compared to the rest of the mansion. It was slightly less upkept than the rest of the mansion, but that was nothing to worry about.

"The Pure Heart is near…" Tippi said. "I feel it's tremors so much more strongly down here…"

"Alright. We should look for her as quickly as we can and try to find that Pure Heart." Mario explained. Peach nodded.

But then, the group heard a strange, though calming voice from what sounded like above them. "Ah! Hooray! Whoopee! Thanks for coming to look for me!" The group looked around, trying to pinpoint the location of the voice. They didn't have any luck, until a hologram appeared above them.

The hologram was of a lady. She had a yellow hat on, and her hair in the back was incredibly long. Was this… Merlee?

"Beautiful, mysterious Merlee! Mistress of the house, it's me! So glad it's you I see!" The hologram, Merlee, spoke. "So long I've waited for you. Your arrival is well past due." And then, she looked sad. "But we can't meet like this, oh no, for something's amiss. An evil one is after me, and safe and sound I cannot be."

"Where are you?" Peach asked in concern.

"In the basement do I dwell, mazelike rooms are my cell, you will find me, I can tell…" Merlee answered. "And…if you do, take care… For…your eyes…may err… Trust nothing…foul…or fair…" Merlee turned into static for a moment. "No… I cannot…last… My power…is…fading…fast… The distance…is…too…vast… Are…you…ready to find me? Beware…if you do, I plea…"

The hologram vanished. It was gone.

"Was that actually Merlee?" Mario asked. "Remember, anything could be a trap after what we just faced."

"Why do think she was telling us to be careful when we find her?" Peach asked.

"She said there was something evil after her…" Tippi said.

"Well whatever's going on, we're going to be prepared." Mario stated. And so, the group walked down the stairs.

Violet woke up.

Her earlier dream only served to confuse her. Who was the figure walking toward her? Who was the figure that jumped on top of them?

Violet looked at the note in her hand again and stuffed it in her pocket. She walked out of her house, wondering what to do, until she looked up and saw the Darkness covering most of the sky.

She gasped. This was the Darkness that Timmy had been talking about? It looked even more menacing now that she had a clear view of it. But a second later, she saw a jet coming. It slowed down as it came closer to her, and she could see who was in it.

Timmy and Junior, along with what looked like three gumballs in the shape of humanoids were in it. Violet ran over.

"Violet!" Timmy said. "Thank goodness we found you!"

"Is that the Darkness you were talking about?" Violet pointed to the sky.

"Yes and we have to hurry!" Junior quickly answered.

"Why hasn't it done anything yet?" Violet asked.

"Umm… I don't know. Now come on, we have to go to the KISS Concert to get the White Wand!" Timmy explained. Violet quickly hopped into the jet.

"Hey, who's the chick?" Cosmo asked. Wanda rolled her eyes.

"Cosmo, that's Violet!" Wanda answered.

"Oh, right."

The jet flew back into the air and took off toward the KISS Concert. A minute later, the Eliminators sped by Violet's house.

Mario and Peach walked down the stairs, getting them further into the basement. They found a block that had a Super Mushroom in it, which would heal them more than a regular Mushroom. Since Mario was still a little tired, he used the Mushroom.

And when they walked forward, they saw that there were two doors they could go through. After a minute of deciding, they decided to go through the left door. In the room, there were two Boos. After they were defeated, they found some writing on the wall.

Room 01

There was a door to the right, so they went through that. In the next room, they suddenly fell to the floor because it was in mid-air. And they also had the option of two doors to go through; one on a platform, and another on the floor. Also, this was Room 03. The group decided to go to the door that was on the ground floor.

In the next room, yet again there were another two options. Another door on a platform, and another one on the ground. But first, there were two blocks. The first one contained a coin, while the other contained a Ghost Shroom, which tried to chase them before it was promptly defeated.

In the next room, there was only one other door, all the way on the other side of the room. The group passed by the Mr. I while hopping on the blocks to get to the next door.

The next room looked really different. When they walked past a door, they saw the next floor on a platform that looked way too high for them to jump to. So when they used their power, since it always seemed to be the solution lately.

When they did, they saw blocks they could jump up. After they did and stopped using their power, they saw…Merlee?

"Ahh, yes, how very nice… Thanks for coming! Thank you twice!" Merlee said. "Mysterious and so lovely, mistress of the house you see… It's me, Merlee! I shine on, such is my lot, a sun to those fate to me brought… And I knew that soon I'd see you buzz on by, little bees." She started laughing.

Mario and the others went up to her. "Hello, Merlee." Mario said. "We've come seeking the Pure Heart."

"Oh, yes, of course, I know!" Merlee responded. "The Pure Heart for Mario! …And co! For you, yes, I'll gladly part with that Purest Pure Heart. Mmm, but there is a wee fee: yes, yes, 10,000,00 Rubees! Quite a bargain, you agree?"

"You have to be kidding me." Peach said with a hint of anger. "I literally just had to pay off some witch a million Rubees just to be able to find you."

"Well, folks, if you'd be dears, sign this dotted line here, and it's yours, free and clear!" Merlee continued, not even phased by what Peach said.

"No." Mario firmly stated. "There is no way I'm going go back up to those rooms and work off another single Rubee. Just please, give us the Pure Heart."

"If you lack the Rubees now, a smallish loan I could allow." Merlee explained. "You can work it off somehow. Just sign here, my dear…"

"We're not signing." Peach said. Merlee could tell the malice in her voice, so she quickly changed the subject.

"…Ok, here's what we'll do. Have I got a deal for you!" Merlee said. "Sign up for a loan, and boom! A free gift! Away with gloom! A Super Mega Ultra Shroom! Just sign here, my dear…"

"I don't want to keep going through this bullcrap. Just give us the damn Pure Heart." Mario said.

"Ugh, fine, you bargain hard." Merlee groaned. "I'll also throw in Breadward, a Pixl made of oats and lard. Isn't that nice of me? I'm the best, don't you see? Here, dear, sign and cheer…"

"I'm… not sure that's how Pixls work…" Tippi commented. "Mario and Peach have also stated multiple times that they wouldn't sign anything…"

"NYAAAAH!" Merlee suddenly screamed. Hang on a sec… didn't someone else also say that?

"Idiots, the lot of you! Turning down such a coup! None of you have a clue!" Merlee ranted. "Here it is: your last shot! Sign right now, on the dot!"

Mario and Peach were both thinking the same thing. Just what the hell was Merlee thinking? Wait… was this even Merlee? The one they talked to earlier was much more calm and collected, this one just went into a frenzy at them saying no.

"We. Won't. Sign." Peach said. And then, confirming their suspicions, the Merlee hologram appeared above them again.

"Good choice, for my sake… This Merlee's a total fake…" Merlee said. "Listen not! She is a snake!" The hologram then disappeared.

"…No point in trying to fool anyone now…" 'Merlee' grumbled. In a puff of purple smoke, she turned into… Mimi? "Gee, lookee here! The girl you thought was a handmaid or a Merlee imposter… She's actually the faithful servant of Count Bleck, master impersonator Mimi!"

Mario, Peach, and Tippi froze. All this time… How could they have not realized? How could they have even believed a word of what this witch said? And now… they had to pay the price for it.

"Golly, I was hoping we could settle this peacefully, but… TOO BAD!" Mimi said. "Oh, you want to make things ugly, huh? Well, that's super. Let's get ugly."

Without warning, Mimi's head craned upwards slowly, in a circular motion, until it stopped about halfway through. Her eyes went pitch black, as her head spun in the opposite direction. Then, after multiple spins, her head stopped when it was upside down. Her bowtie enlarged and flashed a few times. Out of it, came six massive spider legs as her eyes disappeared; and she soon stood on those legs.

Mimi's new form was… disgusting to the heroes, to say the least. Mario and Peach assumed a fighting stance, though the Merlee hologram appeared above them again.

"Please, my friends, beware." Merlee said. "A barrier protects her there. In fact, it's everywhere. I think attacks may well be useless against such as she."

"Great…" Mario said. "What do we do?"

"I must suggest you flee. Come and find the real me. I am hiding, look and see. If you can, my magic may weaken her and win the day! Hurry, hurry, don't delay!" Merlee explained. Then, she disappeared again.

Then, Mimi started to quickly crawl toward them. Now, she was easily way taller than they were, and they could see every so often that she glowed a rainbowish color a little bit.

"What do we do?" Peach questioned.

Mario quickly started to formulate a plan in his head. Going back would just lead them away from Merlee; they had already explored the entire mansion. Which would mean that the only way to go would be… through the door in front of them.

Mario grabbed Peach's hand. "Tuck your head!" He threw himself forward, managing to roll right under and past Mimi. They quickly got back up and ran through the door, Mimi right on their tail.

Now, there was no time to waste. The next part of the mansion could very well be a gigantic maze, and they would have to quickly find their way through it and find Merlee while getting chased by the invincible Mimi.

As they went through the door, they quickly scanned their surroundings. They ran ahead, quickly dodging two Swoopers that swooped down on them. When they got to the end of the room, they saw a door in the air, and a thin hole in the ground that they used Slim to get through. Through that hole, was a room with yet another door.

In the next room, they saw two doors on platforms, both on opposite sides of the room. The two of them quickly decided to go to the one on the upper right, while Mario barely dodged a Cursya, which, according to Tippi, would've slowed him down majorly.

In the next room, they found a crack in the wall. Peach used Boomer to see if there was a door there, but all they found was a Shroom Shake. Great. They were wasting time. When Peach went back out, they hadn't even realized it, but there were three separate doors they could go through. After a couple seconds of deliberation, they decided to go through the one on the top left.

But as they went through the door, they could hear Mimi's cackling, meaning she was getting ever closer. In the next room, they saw a crack in the wall on the opposite side of the room. Would this one actually lead somewhere?

Deciding he would risk it, Mario used Boomer to blow up the crack in the wall. They ran through the resulting hole, which actually went to a door. They quickly went through it.

In the next room… there was a door that was floating? The group didn't have time to ponder that, as they heard Mimi again, meaning they had to speed up. They chose the door on top of a platform, hoping it was the right one.

In the next room, there was a big Boo, and behind it, some stairs. They thankfully managed to get past the Boo, and ran up the stairs. The next room contained entrances to two bathrooms; one for men, and the other for women.

"Which one should we go in?" Mario asked.

"Hmm…" Peach thought aloud. "If Merlee would be hiding here, then it would make the most sense for her to hide in the women's bathroom."

"That seems logical…" Tippi added.

So they ran into the women's restroom, Mimi's laughing slowly getting louder. They carefully checked the stalls, and soon enough, they found Merlee in the 4th stall from the right. The lady emerged from the toilet, a fly buzzing around her, which she paid no mind to.

Merlee laughed a little. "Found me! The real Merlee! I shine on, such is my lot, a sun to those fate to me brought…" She jumped out of the toilet, and landed on the floor.

"To be honest, we didn't actually think you'd be hiding in a toilet." Mario said.

"I'm afraid that Mimi freak was too robust, and I too weak…" Merlee explained. "The Pure Heart I quickly took and hid where she would never look… But now you're here; hooray! This bad tide will turn today! Soon that awful Mimi pays… You and I can now join up to teach that tiny, bratty pup a lesson: now let's power up!"

"Ooh, I don't think so…" They heard Mimi. Suddenly, she seemed to teleport into the room. Before anyone could react, she rushed over to Merlee. And then, there was a flash of light.

After the light subsided, to Mario and Peach's surprise, there were… two Merlees? It was impossible to tell one from the other. At seeing each other, both of the Merlees were angry.

"Stop pretending to be me!" Merlee 1 yelled. "Everyone knows you are Mimi! Come on, friends! Attack! We can drive her back!"

"What's this you talk about? You're the faker! And a lout!" Merlee 2 retorted. "Don't be fooled by her act! Get her now! Now! Attack!"

"It's me! The real Merlee!"

"No, it's me! The true Merlee!"

The Merlees turned themselves to the heroes. "Look at us very closely. One of us has real beauty… and one is fake as can be." Merlee 1 explained.

"Oh, please, you make me gag." Merlee 2 said. "I am hot; no need to brag. And you… Well, you're a hag."

Merlee 1 turned to Merlee 2. "Grrr! What a fib-maker! You're such a fake faker!"

"Oh, now, come off it, dear! You're a dog from eye to ear! And your breath reeks, I fear." Merlee 2 said. "BIG PIG!"


Then, one Merlee rammed into the other. And the other retaliated by ramming back. The first one rammed again but the other dodged by jumping over her. She chortled while the other one growled. Then, they both rammed into each other, knocking each other down. They both sighed tiredness. They turned to the heroes again.

"This is going nowhere, see… Let's let them pick a Merlee and settle it; do you agree?" Merlee 1 asked.

"Wait, what?" Peach asked in confusion.

"Sounds like a good thought. 'Cause I'm the real me (hot) and you really aren't (not)." Merlee 2 said.

Merlee 1 laughed. "Oh, how much do you amuse! You're a fake! You will lose!"

Then, Merlee 2 laughed. "You're fake, you stupid fake! We all know you're the snake!"

"IT'S ON, CON!" They both yelled. Then, all of a sudden, the entire room turned into a quiz show of some sort. On one side of the room, Mario and Peach were sitting in a chair, and on the other side, both Merlees were sitting in chairs. The host was a blue computer being hung on a pole from the ceiling.

"IT'S the 66th Annual… 'That's My Merlee!' show! How're you folks doing?" The host asked. "Let's get going! You're gonna ask these two Merlees a total of FIVE questions! Listen closely to those answers, 'cause at the end, you gotta pick the real one! Oh, but that's not all! Pick wrong, and there could be some disastrous results! Now, pick your first question!"

Before Mario, Peach, or Tippi could ask anything a screen lowered and 10 questions appeared on it. All of them were basic questions, which would be easy enough to answer.

"Do we really have to go through this?" Mario asked. "Time is of the essence here!"

"I'm afraid we have no other choice…" Tippi said. Mario sighed.


"Well, I'm sure this won't take too long." Peach suggested. "Let's just ask the questions, and this'll be over with soon."

"But what if we pick the wrong Merlee?" Mario asked.

Peach hesitated for a moment. "I'm sure we'll pick the right one."

"…I hope you're right." Mario said. He looked to the list of questions. "Um… What kind of guy's your type?" He raised an eyebrow.

There was a moment of silence, before Merlee 1 spoke. "Hee hee…I love them all, see… Nope! No type for me!"

"Oh, how can I share when… the guy's right there." Merlee 2 said.

Several more questions were asked. Merlees 1 and 2 both gave answers that would make them seem like the real Merlee. Mario and Peach struggled to make a final decision. That is, until Peach realized something about Merlee 1.

"Mario, see the fly buzzing around the one on the left?" Peach asked.

"Yeah?" Mario answered, wondering where this was going.

"When we saw Merlee coming out of the toilet there was a fly buzzing around her." Peach explained. Mario paused. That… actually made a lot of sense…

"We pick Merlee #1." Mario said with finality. A few seconds passed with nothing at all happening.

"Well, enough suspense!" The computer host exclaimed. "Let's see if the one you picked is the right Merlee… A fateful moment, folks! I'm on pins and needles!" A few seconds passed, with a drumroll while Mario and Peach crossed their fingers. And sure enough… "DING! CORRECT!"

Merlee laughed for a moment. "Well, of course, obviously! Nobody could copy me!"

However, "Merlee" was not having it, now that the group knew she was Mimi. "Stupid-heads… I'd mimicked her perfectly! You know it! … I guess I'll congratulate you… by tearing you to little bits like stupid confetti!"

Mimi transformed back into her usual form, the quiz show setting now the bathroom again. A moment later, Mimi transformed into her spider form again, causing Merlee to flee out of the bathroom.

"I will cheer from over here!" Merlee called out. "Rah! Rah! Whoosh-bing-bah! Hit 'er in the knee! …If she has one. Does she?"

Mimi laughed a little. "She's a fast one, isn't she? Oh, golly, well, whatever. I'll finish you off first!"

Mario and Peach both knew that this time, there would be no running. They had to fight Mimi here. It was now or never. But… just how would they be able to defeat her if she was invincible like this? Well, they had to try.

Mimi started skidding toward them on all 6 of her legs, while they heard Merlee continuing to cheer them on. Mario tried to jump on her, though as he expected, it had no effect.

At Merlee's next cheer, something unexpected happened. Several hearts flew into the room, covering Mimi for a moment, though she didn't notice. Then, Peach tried to jump on her, expecting it to have no effect.

Except it did.

To Peach's shock, Mimi actually ended up being stunned for a moment.

"But…what?" Mimi questioned. "Why can you damage me? I'm supposed to be all INVINCIBLE! Count Bleck's power was supposed to protect me!"

"Rah! Rah! Whoosh-bing-bah!" Merlee continued to cheer. "You can now hit her, dear! For this is no normal cheer! This cheer is magic, woo! Her magic barrier is through!"

"What? When did this happen?" Mimi yelled. "EEK! I feel completely naked! How could you?"

"Quick! Now's our chance!" Mario yelled. He ran up and jumped on Mimi. When he did, one of her spider legs fell off. So… all they had to do would be to take out all of her spider legs. Should be easy enough.

They managed to take out another leg before Mimi summoned a row of Rubees to come flying up out of the ground. Thankfully both Mario and Peach dodged them. Peach attacked Mimi again.

"Hee hee on you, dearie!" Merlee cheered. "Now you shall see the way a good cheer wins the day!"

Mario and Peach kept attacking. They were able to get Mimi down to two legs before Merlee cheered again. "Yes! Yes! Our team's best! GO TEAM!"

Once Mimi was down to one leg and stunned, Peach delivered the finishing blow. Mimi had no legs left, so she fell to the ground.

"B-But how could you… It's impossible… How…" Mimi groaned. There were several mini explosions on her body before she turned back to normal. "Don't think you've beaten me for good, dummies… Next time you won't be so lucky… Remember that… Stupid-heads!" She floated high in the air, and then disappeared.

"Well, I'm glad that we don't have to deal with her anymore." Mario commented. Peach nodded in agreement. A moment later, Merlee went back into the bathroom and walked up to them.

"Fine job on that Mimi, yes! The Pure Heart's safe, evil's repressed." Merlee said. "You know, the tenants here guarded it for 1,500 years, waiting for you to draw near! Finally, that duty's done, and I'm ecstatic, for one. But wait, ere we finish up, I must tell you something, yup.

"So, the Light Prognosticus was read by you, yes? It was written there that I and my ancestors waited by the Pure Heart, staying spry… But something wasn't written there, and of it you must be aware. There is another prophecy: a heart of chaos can only be beaten by ten of mystery… Ten heroes unite, their hope burns forth light to shatter the walls of blight. That is how despair, it dies, such is what we prophesize here in the home of the wise."

"Ten heroes…" Peach wondered out loud.

"I am sure the pair of you, Mario and Peach, you too, are the first of heroes true. So, then, it might not be great, but you have to find the other heroes eight. I would guess, if I had to, that some might be known to you. Now, finally, let me be! I hereby do my sworn duty! There! From me it parts! Here, heroes! A Pure Heart!"

From Merlee, came the Yellow Pure Heart. It floated above Peach, while Thoreau, Boomer, and Slim danced around her. And then, it floated all the way down to her. Only five left to go.

Count Bleck's servant Mimi had laid a nasty trap for Mario and friends…

But with the help of Merlee, faithful defender of the Pure Heart, the day was won.

But who were the other eight heroes mentioned by Merlee?

With five Pure Hearts yet to be found, Mario knew this adventure had only begun…

Chapter Text

It had gotten quite dark since they picked up Violet. Timmy and the others were quite close to getting to the MARF concert. In fact, they suddenly crashed into the MARF sign.

"What happens in Vegas…" Cosmo started. "Well, you know the rest."

Thankfully the jet hadn't completely broken down, so Timmy was able to back it out of the sign and carefully set it on the ground. "Come on!" Timmy said, opening the jet. He jumped out of it and ran toward the concert entrance, followed by Junior and Violet.

Cosmo and Wanda tried to hop out of the jet too, but their gum properties slowed them down. "We're coming, guys!" They yelled.

The three ran up to the entrance, which was blocked by a ticket usher. The people in the line to the right of them assumed that Junior was a kid in a costume, and that Violet was their guardian.

"Look pal, the three of us have to get into this festival." Timmy explained. "It's a long story, but I'm the Chosen One."

The ticket usher sighed in exasperation and rolled his eyes. After all, their story wasn't really that believable. "Nobody gets in without a ticket or backstage pass."

"But we need to get in there!" Violet said.

"Well do you have a ticket or backstage pass?" The usher questioned.

"Well, no, but-"

"Then you're not getting in! Now leave before I call security!"

At this point, the three fairies had caught up with them. And, Junior was getting angry at this guy. So, he did something risky. "You want a backstage pass? I'll give you one, alright!" From his hammerspace, he pulled out his Klown Kar. He quickly got in it and shot a huge cannon at the nearby wall, causing there to be a huge hole in it.

At that, nearly everyone still in line screamed and ran off. The usher cowered in fear. "W-W-Well, enjoy the show."

Timmy, Junior, and Violet ran in while Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof floated behind them. People were cheering. Some guy was on the stage way ahead of them. "Give it up for KISS!" The guy yelled.

A large KISS banner was above him. Smoke appeared for several seconds, blocking the view of the stage. When it dissipated, everyone saw the KISS Band members; Tommy, Gene, Paul, and Eric. The cheering intensified as KISS started to play their instruments.

"Are you too old to rock and roll" Paul and Gene yelled into a microphone.

"No!" The crowd responded. Suddenly they all felt pain in their backs. "Ow! Our backs!"

Then, KISS started playing again. Paul played his guitar, Eric played the drums, Gene played a guitar, and Tommy also played a guitar. But it wasn't any guitar. It was the White Wand. And that's exactly what Timmy was focused on.

"There's the White Wand!" Timmy said, pointing to Tommy.

"But how are you going to get onto the stage to get it?" Wanda asked.

Timmy looked around, scanning the place. Over to the side, there were stands for items such as posters, t-shirts, heating pads, ice packs, antacids, and MERFandise. Wait a minute… the MERFandise had climbing harnesses and hooks. Just what he needed.

"Bingo." Timmy said with a smile. They were able to sneak over to the stand and grab one of the climbing harnesses and hooks without anyone noticing.

Thanks to more sneaking around, they managed to get up to one of the rafters near the ceiling, positioned right above the stage. "Two of you grab the other end of the line and lower me down." Timmy explained, putting the hook on his belt. "I'll snag the wand and you pull me back up."

"Are you sure this is a good idea?" Violet asked.

"Trust me, this idea is totally going to work." Timmy reassured, putting on a pair of sunglasses. He jumped down. Junior held the rope, expecting someone to help him. But the weight ended up being too much for him, so he was pulled down too.

Timmy's sunglasses fell off as he and Junior fell, the both of them screaming. They crash landed onto Tommy, who had no idea that they were falling.

"I thought you were helping him hold the line!" Wanda yelled at Cosmo.

"What line?" Cosmo asked in stupidity. Wanda rolled her eyes.

"All right!" Gene yelled into the microphone onstage. "Let's hear a guitar solo!" He gestured over to where Tommy would be. But what they saw was Tommy knocked over, Timmy holding the White Wand, and Junior standing next to Timmy.

"Who the heck are they?" Paul asked.

Timmy laughed a little. "Would you believe I'm the Chosen One?" He asked.

"And that I'm a friend of the Chosen One?" Junior added.

"The Chosen One?" All four KISS band members questioned. And then, they all got into fighting stances. Gene's guitar turned into a rocket launcher, Paul's guitar into an axe, and Eric's drums into a battle cannon. They ran up and aimed their weapons at Timmy and Junior.

"I'm guessing that's a no." Junior said.

"We are the galactic guardians of the White Wand!" Gene explained.

Timmy raised an eyebrow. "Guardians? I thought you were KISS!"

"That's our day job." Paul said. "We've protected the White Wand for centuries."

"Centuries? Wow, you guys are older than you look." Timmy commented.

"A lot older." Junior added.

"Why do you think we wear the makeup?" Paul asked, pointing to his face. Then, Gene continued the previous explanation.

"And we knew that someday, an agent of the Darkness, or a chosen savior would come to claim it." Gene stated, pointing to the wand Timmy held.

"If you the Chosen One, you must prove it." Paul added. Just then, everything started shaking. "And you might wanna hurry." He added. The Darkness had at last caught up with them, and now was hovering over the stadium. At the same time, the Eliminators were heading toward the stadium, and fast.

Pieces of the ceiling were falling down. The people in the crowd screamed as they tried to avoid them, not wanting to get seriously hurt.

"Okay okay, how do I prove it?" Timmy quickly asked, understanding the severity of the situation.

"Bequeath to us the chosen hartness, and this axe is yours to light The Darkness." Gene explained.

"What the heck does that mean?" Timmy yelled.

"We were hoping you knew!" Paul responded.

"Do you know how long it took us to solve the riddle to get here in the first place?" Junior yelled. "We got it wrong the first time and nearly got arrested and probably almost killed!"

At this time, Violet had just ran onto the stage while Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof had floated down to them. "Timmy, they can't give you the wand until you recite the Chosen One creed!" Wanda said. "Or say some ancient code or something!"

"But I don't know any ancient code!" Timmy said. "All I know is I was erased from everyone's memories, barely escaped being destroyed by the Eliminators, found Junior and Violet, figured out an impossible KISS riddle, got chased by MERF to get to MARF, only to have you to tell me that I need a secret code that I don't have because I'm plain ol' TIMMY TURNER!"

The last part of his rant was echoed throughout the microphone. Everyone in the crowd gasped as they heard Timmy's name. "I said my name out loud, didn't I?" Timmy realized.

"Yeah…" Violet cringed a little. "And it echoed a little."

A second later, the three Eliminators broke through a part of the ceiling, and landed on the ground near the entrance. With their scanners, they locked their aim on Timmy, who was still holding the White Wand. "Eliminate the Chosen One." The Lead Eliminator said. They aimed their laser guns and fired them on stage.

Timmy, Junior, and the fairies screamed as they all threw themselves to a side; the KISS Band and Timmy to one, and Violet, Junior and the fairies to the other. The Eliminators' lasers hit the sound amps destroying them.

Timmy and the KISS Band looked up from the amp they were hiding from. "Okay we believe you, the White Wand is yours." Gene quickly said.

"Awesome!" Timmy cheered. "Now what do I do with it?"

"You're kidding, right?" Paul asked.

The Eliminators stepped closer to the stage. "Show's over, Chosen One." The three of them said.

"The show is never over!" Gene said, stepping out of the hiding place. "Time to rock and roll!" Everyone else then stepped out their hiding places. Violet quickly formed a sword of purple ice using her powers, and Junior got his Klown Kar out of his hammerspace yet again.

Eric aimed his battle cannon at one of the Eliminators and fired, destroying it. The pieces flew everywhere. Paul strung his guitar, causing waves of sonic energy to hurtle toward another Eliminator, also destroying it.

But before anyone could do anything else, The Lead Eliminator got out another weapon, one that looked suspiciously familiar to Timmy. The robot aimed the weapon at the other weapons and fired. The weapons from everyone onstage instantly disappeared.

"Ok, all our weapons are bye-bye." Paul said.

Timmy looked some more at the Lead Eliminator's weapons, wondering what it reminded him of. After a moment, he realized it. "Not every weapon!" He yelled. "Poof, look! A teething ring!" He pointed to the Eliminator's weapon.

At seeing it, Poof practically went bonkers. His mouth watering, he flew straight over to the "teething ring" and tried to chew on it. The Lead Eliminator's eyes widened. "Get it off, get it off!" He tried to shake the fairy baby off him, only for the weapon to come off with it.

Paul and Gene jumped to the front of the stage. "And now's it time for you to get eliminated!" Gene yelled. He took a deep breath, and spewed fire out of his mouth onto the Lead Eliminator, melting it into a huge pile of blue goop.

"Now that's what I call bad breath!" Cosmo commented.

The pile of blue goop began to lengthen, until even some of the people in the audience had to step back from it. And then, when it was large enough, it formed into twenty Eliminators, including the Lead Eliminator. The Eliminators soon began firing, forcing everyone on stage to duck behind an amp.

"You're not very good guardians!" Timmy yelled.

"Well you're not the greatest Chosen One either, bub!" Paul said.

Just then, one of the Eliminator's blasts destroyed the amp, exposing their hiding place. The Eliminators started stalking toward them. Violet formed another ice sword.

"Well we gotta do something!" Timmy said as the Eliminators prepared to fire at them. "An army's not just gonna fall from the sky and help us!"

"That's what you think, Chosen One!"

Timmy looked up. Hundreds of gum fairies had come in from holes in the ceiling. And… they all had bubble butts.

"Bubble butt brigade, attack!" Juandissimo, the leader of them yelled. He got out a needle, and poked it at the bubble. When it popped, he flew at high speeds toward the Eliminators. The other fairies soon did the same.

The fairies began sticking to the Eliminators, forcing them back from Timmy and the others. At first, it seemed like the sudden plan was working. But unexpectedly, one of the Eliminators managed to rip a gum fairy off of them, tossing it to the floor. The other Eliminators soon started to do the same, before the fairies could overwhelm them. It was a losing battle, as far as the fairies were concerned.

One question was on Timmy's mind. Just how were they going to get out of this?

Mario knew that something was wrong.

He had used the Return Pipe to get back to Flipside just like he did before. But… he was floating in some white space. He didn't see Peach. He didn't see Tippi either.

"Hello?" Mario called out. There was no response. His mind filled with many emotions. Worry. Fear. Curiosity.

He discovered that he could sort of swim in this area of nothing. It was weird. It didn't feel like he was in water, but he could still swim.

This area had an eerie feel to it. Like something was wrong. But he pushed those feelings aside. Wouldn't want to jinx anything…

He continued to swim around. Nothing. Just how big was this place? What even was this?

He suddenly stopped in his tracks. He heard something… like… insane laughter…

Wait a minute.

Before he could think, something appeared above him. It started as flames, making the appearance of a triangle. Then, an eye appeared in the middle of it, and from it laughter. The same laughter Mario heard last night. The flames disappeared, and in it's place, was a triangle with a singular eye. He wore a tall top hat and a bow tie, and had short arms and legs.

"Well, well, well, it's good to see you, buddy!" The triangle said cheerfully.

It felt like a lightning bolt went off in the back of Mario's head. He… had heard that same phrase before. All the way back when Tippi was trying to wake him up in Bowser's Castle.

"W-Who are you?" Mario managed to ask.

"Me? I'm Bill Cipher! I'm surprised you don't remember." Bill said. "But I remember you, Jumpman! The plumber who saved the Mushroom Kingdom from characters such as Smithy, Cackletta, Grodus, and Princess Shroob; oh I'm getting ahead of myself. What I'm here for is that I want to make a deal with you, Jumpman!"

Mario raised an eyebrow. Jumpman? "How do you know all this?"

"Jumpman, let's just say I know lots of things. Anyway, about that deal. I'm sure your journey so far has been hard, right?" Bill asked.

Mario thought for a moment. He had nearly gotten killed fighting Fracktail, and again when he worked to the point of exhaustion hours ago at Merlee's. "Yeah…"

"And I'm sure it's also been hard trying to collect these Pure Hearts, right?" Bill said, exposing the Yellow Pure Heart from behind his back.

"Where did you get that?" Mario questioned. "I thought Peach had it! A-And where is she? And where's Tippi?"

"Geez, kid, relax. No need to get your hat in a knot, they're perfectly safe. Anyways, about that deal. I could help you on your quest to get the Pure Hearts or whatever, as long as you help me with something I've been working on." Bill explained.

Mario, obviously, was unsure. The triangle had come out of nowhere, which already raised a few red flags. And, he said that he needed help with something. Just what was that 'something'?

"Ya know, Jumpman, do you really think you'll be able to gather all of the other heroes?" Bill asked. "I mean, what, you already have three Pure Hearts and only one other hero? And you don't know who half of them are!" Bill erupted in laughter.

Mario didn't know what to say. Bill… was right. It would practically take luck to find the rest of the eight heroes at this rate.

"And don't forget about that Void, Jumpman." Bill added. "One Pure Heart per day, huh? Boy, that's the slowest I've ever seen. Like I said, I can help you get them way quicker, and you won't need to find any of the other heroes. So, what do you say?" Bill extended his hand out, and when it did, a blue flame lit from it. "Do we have a deal?"

Mario carefully thought about this. The more that Bill said, the more truth that he spoke. Mario slowly extended out his hand to meet Bill's. That is, until he felt multiple chills coming up his spine. He felt another memory coming back to him.

It was several days ago. Mario paced around his house while Luigi and Violet were away. Every other year, the double birthday party had mostly been about Mario. But Mario wanted to change that. He wanted this year to be about Luigi. Not him.

Mario could tell at times that Luigi felt in his brother's shadow. Whether it be if they saved Peach from Bowser or simply played a tennis tournament.

That's exactly why Mario wanted this party to be for Luigi. He deserved time in the spotlight. But try as he might, he couldn't think of anything good enough.

He started to get frustrated, so he took a deep breath and walked outside. Mario had gotten outside just on time to see Parakarry deliver the mail. After a short exchange, Parakarry handed Mario his mail, and then the letter-delivering koopa flew off.

Mario decided that a good walk outside would clear his head. After all, the party wasn't for several days. If he could get a good idea today or tomorrow, everything would be fine.

Today, Mario decided not to walk into Toad Town. A walk in the forest nearby sounded great to try to get his mind clear. He walked for a little while before stumbling on a cave.

The cave was really out of the way, and Mario had to use his firebrand power that he didn't really use often since the Beanbean incident. Granted, since he didn't use it, the power would slowly diminish, though he would always still have it no matter what.

Mario used his firebrand to light up the cave. A couple of Buzzy Beetles scurried away at this, but he paid them no mind. The cave only had one relatively straightforward path, easy to follow. 

Though, it didn't last too long. On a wall, were a drawing and some writing. The writing, Mario couldn't understand the writing at all, it looked like an alien language. Though, the drawing… it was a tr-

Mario's hand suddenly snapped back to him mere inches before it met Bill's. Something was familiar about the triangle. He… had seen him before. Mario didn't know where or how, but he knew.

"What's wrong, Jumpman? Don't you want to save the world?" Bill asked.

Mario stared at him for a moment. "I do want to save the world. I am gonna save the world! I'm going to find the rest of the heroes along with Peach, get the rest of the Pure Hearts, and save all worlds!"

Bill locked his eye with him for a moment, as if to analyze him. "Well, Jumpman, if you're not gonna take my deal, then I won't stop you. Here, take your Pure Heart, I hate love anyway." Bill practically tossed the Pure Heart at Mario. Once the plumber caught it, it automatically went into his pocket. "I'll just find another one of you sad saps to make that deal."

"Enough! Give me Peach and Tippi and take us back to Flipside!" Mario yelled.

"I'll give you Parasol Girl and Rainbow, sure." Bill started. "But I'm not just gonna give you the luxury of getting back to Flipside, especially not after rejecting my deal. Oh well!"

Mario grew a little worried. "W-Well where are you taking us, then?"

Bill shrugged. "Whatever's convenient for me." 

Before Mario could respond, Bill suddenly snapped his fingers, and disappeared.

And then, gravity took affect.

Chapter Text

Mario was falling. For how long, he didn't know. But soon enough, to his relief, he saw Peach and Tippi also falling. At first, they were falling above him, but soon, they were falling next to him.

"Mario!" Peach yelled in a rush. "What's going on?"

"I-I-I don't know!" Mario answered. He decided that now was not the time that he nearly made a deal with a suspicious yellow triangle just moments ago.

"I just sort of woke up here and then I started falling!" Peach yelled. "And Tippi hasn't been saying anything!"

Below them, Mario and Peach saw something. It looked to be rainbowish, and it appeared to glitch a little. Electricity spewed from it. In fact, it was big enough to fit all of them.

There wasn't any way to avoid it. They had no choice but to go through. And as they went through, they saw a variety of colors and unknown images.

After what felt like forever, they saw another opening out of it. Mario scanned his surroundings as soon as they were on the other side. For starters, they were in a large purple building. There were a ton of people below who took notice of the unworldly portal above them that soon disappeared.


Mario realized that this might be their death sentence. They were falling, and fast, to what looked like a stage, but time seemed to slow to a crawl. He closed his eyes and tucked his body to try to reduce the impact. Peach did the same.

Onstage, Timmy and the others, including the Eliminators, soon took notice of what was falling above them. The Eliminators were practically blasted back as whatever hit the ground caused a small explosion.

And miraculously, Mario, Peach, and Tippi were not hurt at all.

"Ok, who the heck are they?" Paul asked.

"I have no idea…" Timmy commented.

Mario was the first to get up. Though he was unhurt, he was still a bit dazed. Just where was he? He didn't take notice to the robots ahead of him at first, but then he turned around. There was what looked like a band of four, a kid with floating gum creatures, and… Violet? And Junior?

"How'd you-Wait. Just what's going on?" Mario questioned. Peach and Tippi got up at this time, and behind them, the Eliminators slowly started to walk forward.

"We have to defeat those Eliminators so Timmy can defeat the Darkness!" Violet yelled.

Eliminators? Darkness? Timmy?

"Enough games." The Lead Eliminator said. Mario and Peach spun around. The Lead Eliminator formed his hand into a laser gun. "It's time, once and for all, to eliminate Timmy Turner." 

Violet went up to Mario and drew her ice sword. "Come on, let's take these down." She said. Mario and Peach smiled, and then glared at the Eliminators. Violet turned around for a moment. "Stay back, Timmy."

Mario, Peach, and Violet charged forward to take on the Eliminators. They ducked around, trying to avoid the shots from their lasers. Mario quickly ran up and punched one, knocking it back. He then delivered a harsh kick to it, knocking it to the ground before it could react. He ducked as a laser from another one narrowly grazed his hat.

Violet quickly reacted as she slashed that one with her sword. It broke in half and exploded. She tried to slash another one, but it shot a laser aimed at the sword, melting part of it. So, she threw the remains at it, impaling its chest. It screamed and fell down.

Peach, meanwhile, smacked another Eliminator with her parasol. It was knocked backward, so she charged at it. The Eliminator tried to zap her, but she jumped over it, and used her parasol to fly above it. She landed behind it, while the Eliminator was still facing the other way. Taking her chance, Peach charged at it, knocking it to the ground.

Onstage, the others looked out to the fight.

"Wow, they can fight even better than we can." Gene commented.

"And they don't have super cool weapons!" Paul added.

Junior was looking a bit down about something. "Hey, what's wrong?" Timmy asked.

"They just zapped away my Klown Kar!" Junior said. "And now I have no other weapons!"

"Listen." Timmy started. "Just because you don't have any weapons, doesn't mean you can't fight. Remember the agents? Thanks to you, we were able to get out of there unharmed."

"Really?" Junior asked.

"Yes. And I'm sure once you find your dad, he'll make you a new Klown Kar. But for now, you're just going to have to use your natural abilities."

At Timmy's speech, Junior felt something rise up within him. Motivation. Those Eliminators had been chasing them this whole time. And this time, he was going to help fight back. He turned to Timmy. "Thanks." After another moment, he turned and jumped into the fray.

Back with Mario, he was starting to have a hard time. Three Eliminators had ganged up on him, and they were starting to get the better of him. He tried to fight back, though to his surprise, an Eliminator pushed him down, and he found himself forced onto the ground. The Eliminator put his boot on Mario's chest, preventing the plumber from getting up.

The Eliminator aimed his laser gun at Mario, along with the other two. Mario struggled. He tried to find some way to push the boot off of him. Violet and Peach seemed to be preoccupied and didn't notice him in peril.

But thankfully, seemingly out of nowhere, a spiked shell rammed into the Eliminator on him, driving it away. Junior popped out of the shell as the Eliminator fell to the ground. And then, using all of his might, he breathed fire from his mouth onto the Eliminator, burning it to a crisp.

Ignoring the fact that a previous villain was now helping him, the fire gave Mario an idea. Aside from the power Bestovious gave him, Mario had another power. The Firebrand. Mario called upon the power, and a controlled flame appeared in his hands.

He looked up at the two Eliminators still facing him. He ran at them, and punched one of them with the Firebrand still in affect. It burned part of the Eliminator, and knocked it back. The other Eliminator fired at him, but this time, Mario wasn't able to dodge.

The laser hit his right shoulder, and Mario let out a cry of pain as he held it for a moment, the firebrand going away. Violet still continued to battle Eliminators, along with Peach.

"Wow!" Timmy cheered, seeing the fight. "It looks like they're actually doing it!"

"If only people like that would fall out the sky more often!" Cosmo said.

A second later, everything began shaking. Timmy gasped, and the fighting momentarily stopped. The ceiling was ripped off, the Darkness sucking it in. And now everyone could see the Darkness, right above the arena. The Darkness groaned.

"Light the Darkness, Timmy!" Paul said. "You're the Chosen One! This is what you were chosen for!"

"Oh, no he's not." The Lead Eliminator spoke. He aimed his laser gun right at Timmy. Though, as he fired, Mario charged at him, and shoved the Lead Eliminator aside. The Lead Eliminator turned to face Mario. "Fine. I'll eliminate you first."

"Like hell you are!" Mario yelled. The Lead Eliminator changed his weapon into a staff. Mario grabbed a fallen piece of the roof that was sort of shaped like a baton and held it up. They both glared, and then struck.

"But I don't know how to play guitar!" Timmy said to Paul. Then, Gene walked up to him.

"Timmy, don't play it." Gene explained. "Feel it."

Timmy looked to his fairy godparents, and then to the KISS Band. This is what all of his efforts had led up to. It all had to be stopped here. Everyone was counting on him. And yet… he couldn't do it.

He couldn't play. It was like there was some invisible force stopping him. Anxiety, was it? No… he didn't know what it was.

Junior saw this amidst his fighting. He saw Timmy, how his hands were shaking on the guitar, his eyes were closed, and there was sweat pouring down his face.

Thankfully since the Eliminator he was fighting was down, Junior had a bit of a reprieve. He looked at the audience. Some of them thought all this was part of the show, others were scared out of their minds, and a few were even recording parts of this and posting it on social media.

Junior frowned. Something needed to be done. He stood on top of a downed Eliminator, and saw a microphone. Perfect. Junior reached for the microphone and picked it up. "Everyone!" He yelled.

Instantly, he had the attention of pretty much everyone in the crowd. So, Junior had to speak quickly. "Come on, everyone! We need to cheer for Timmy so he can play the guitar! Come on! Cheer! Timmy! Timmy! Timmy!"

Peach and Violet heard this. They stopped fighting for a moment to cheer for Timmy. Soon, someone in the crowd started cheering. And then more people. In less than a minute, everyone in the crowd was cheering for Timmy.

Cosmo and Wanda were also cheering. The KISS Band even got in on it too. Mario managed to find a pause in his fighting as he managed to push back the Lead Eliminator with a piece of the ceiling. He looked at Timmy.

"Come on, Timmy! Play that guitar! Play it for everyone here!" Mario yelled.

Timmy managed to open his eyes. And then, with confidence stirring up deep within him, he played a few strums. His hands glowed as soon as he did. Whatever this was… it felt natural. The crowd went silent.

The strums soon formed into a song. Timmy's mouth slowly formed into a big smile. "I… I feel it!" He felt amazing. Energy flowed through his body with each note he played. The crowd burst into a wild frenzy of cheering; though not his name, but full of "WHOO"s and "YEAAA"s and other cheers.

KISS also cheered. With Mario, he continued to fight as Timmy's song went on. The Lead Eliminator managed to break the ceiling piece he had, and for a moment, he felt defenseless. That is, until Peach suddenly struck the Lead Eliminator upside the head with her parasol.

Timmy slid across the stage as his song continued, his notes playing in an astounding rock rhythm. He slid to the center of the stage, as his body began glowing. A flash of light emitted from his body as he aimed the guitar upward at the Darkness. White fire spewed from the wand's tip flying toward the Darkness.

As the fire went inside the Darkness, it roared in agony, lightning bolts spewing out of it as it flashed for a moment. It was clearly in pain, as it moved back just a little bit.

"Keep rocking, Chosen One!" Cosmo and Wanda cheered.

Mario dodged a swipe from the Lead Eliminator. From behind, Peach struck it with her parasol again, though the Lead Eliminator was quick to grab the parasol and toss it aside.

Timmy spun around several times, filled with glee. And when he stopped, with his head arched back and eyes closed, more fire spewed from the guitar as he and the guitar glowed. The fire once again went into the Darkness, with the Darkness reacting the same as last time, with the lightning and moving backward.

Meanwhile, Violet managed to take down a few more Eliminators, with Junior at her side. "You know, how did your friendship with Timmy form in the first place?" Violet asked in between fighting an Eliminator.

"…I guess it had to do with how we had similar goals, and that we would only benefit from each other's help." Junior answered.

"But weren't there any disagreements? Did you get into any fights at all?" Violet also asked.

At that, Junior froze, though Violet didn't notice because she had to take on two Eliminators that had gotten up. Flashes of memories of what had happened in the sewers ran through his mind, even though he tried to block it out.

That reminded him that he still had that random page and that cluster of gems in his hammerspace, which made him wonder… just where did either of those come from? Due to their encounter with the agents, he knew that there were a lot of those creatures with the government. But that still didn't answer any of his questions.

For now, he decided to put this to the back of his mind and focus on the fight. Plus, when this was all over… there was something he needed to ask Timmy.

Back with Timmy, though no one expected it, he… licked the guitar? He must've been really in the zone to do that.

"Okay, maybe that's too far." Wanda said, a bit unnerved.

"That is a little… disturbing…" Tippi commented.

"No it's not!" Paul exclaimed,

"Dude, that's a long tongue." Gene commented.

Mario used his firebrand to push back the Lead Eliminator, it not wanting to get burned. Though, a second later, it's hand turned into a new weapon. A flamethrower. The Lead Eliminator immediately aimed it at Mario and let loose with it.

Instinctively, Mario threw up his hands and closed his eyes. After a few seconds, he came to the realization that he was not getting burned at all. He opened his eyes, and saw that his firebrand was blocking the other flame.

Why didn't he use his firebrand more often?

With one final cheer, more fire spewed out of the White Wand. The Darkness groaned once more in agony. And then, something else happened. Against all odds, the Darkness glowed white, and a bright white light emitted from it, forcing the four down below to stop their fighting.

"It's working!" Wanda said.

From the Darkness came out a large white tube. After a few seconds, it pulled in all of the Eliminators, and thankfully too, since Peach, Violet, and Junior hadn't been doing that hot at that current time. All of the Eliminators were sucked in, not one left behind.

And then, the Darkness receded backward, away from the Earth, in its wake, it spit out every planet it had previously eaten, including Fairy World. And then, it flew all the way backwards into the cosmos, screeching, as its destination was unknown…

As soon as Fairy World was spit out, Jorgen fell into one of the streets, screaming. After a few moments, he got back up. "He did it!" He cheered. "And man was it dark in there."

There was silence for a moment at the KISS concert. Nobody was sure what to say. That is, until someone in the crowd spoke up. "Awesome light show." At that, everyone in the crowd began cheering.

"Is it over?" Cosmo asked. A moment later, the clouds parted, and all of the stars were back in the sky, shining beautifully.

"Now it's over." Timmy said, after turning around. He hit a few strings on the guitar.

Mario, Peach, Violet and Junior walked up to the KISS band members, while Tippi floated to them. "So, what are you guys exactly?" Mario asked.

"I'm pretty sure they're supposed to be fairy warriors." Violet explained.

"Actually, we prefer the term: Magical Order Of Rocking Fairies!" Paul yelled.

"You mean MORF?" Cosmo asked. "Not to be confused with MERF!"

Unexpectedly, the MARF Machine suddenly crashed through a wall into the arena, and several people screamed as they ran out of the way of it. The vehicle soon stopped, and out of it jumped Terrance, Tamara, and Crocker.

"Yes! We finally made it to MARF!" Terrance cheered.

"But we missed the show." Tamara realized, seeing the aftermath of what had happened.

"And it looks like they really blew the lid off the place too, man." Crocker added.

"NO!" Terrance cried in dismay, going to his knees. "Where are the bathrooms?" He quickly got up and ran to the bathroom, Crocker and Tamara behind him.

"Oh look, even that street urchin was part of the show." Tamara said as they ran past.

"And look! He has those pink and green balloon animals!" Crocker added. "And there's even a small purple one!"

"Wow! I have to find out where I can get one of those!" Terrance said. The three finally made it into the bathroom.

KISS looked at each other for a moment. "We should, like, party."

"Um, I'm not sure if we have enough time to-" Mario started, before getting interrupted by Peach.

"Come on Mario, after all we've been through, don't you think we should have a break?" Peach asked.

"Yes, I agree… this whole ordeal has been very chaotic so far…" Tippi agreed.

After a moment, Mario smiled. And then, so did Timmy.

Not too long later, there was a party in Fairy World. Under the guise that their memories would be erased afterward, Jorgen had let Timmy invite the two incompetent MERF agents, his parents, and Crocker to the party. In addition, all of the fairies were back in their normal forms, not being gum anymore. KISS was playing the song they had started to play back at the concert.

Timmy and the others, including Jorgen were standing on a platform high above the other fairies.

"You know, now that I think about it, we haven't properly introduced ourselves yet." Wanda realized, referring to Mario, Peach, and Tippi.

"Allow me to start." Mario said. "I'm Mario, from the Mushroom Kingdom, and this is Peach from the Mushroom Kingdom."

"Nice to meet you all." Peach greeted.

"And, the butterfly right here is Tippi." Mario gestured to the rainbow butterfly. "And I can see you've already gotten acquainted with Violet and Junior. Anyway, we've been on a quest to find the 8 Pure Hearts so we can stop Count Bleck from destroying everything."

"That sounds awesome! And dangerous." Timmy said. "Can you tell us more?"

And so Mario began to explain, starting from the point where the arrived at Bowser's Castle. Peach and Tippi also filled in whenever they could for what Mario wasn't there for or couldn't explain. Though, Mario did be sure to intentionally leave out his encounter with Bill Cipher and the… other problems he had. And at one point, he showed off the Yellow Pure Heart they had recently collected.

"So, I'm sure you all had a hard time trying to stop the Darkness." Peach said, after they had explained the battle with Mimi. "Maybe you could tell us what happened with you?"

"Yes, that would be interesting to hear…" Tippi agreed.

Timmy then told his tale, starting from when Jorgen had poofed him out of his trilogy wishes. When Timmy found Junior at the Cave Of Destiny, that was when Junior joined in. Though, they did leave out the part about the sewers… And of course, when it got to the point where they found Violet, the female also joined it.

"…So when we got to the KISS Concert, I got the White Wand, and then the Eliminators attacked, and then that's when you three arrived." Timmy finished.

"I must say, that is really complicated." Mario commented. "It might be as complicated as our story. I mean, monsters that have gems on them locked away by the government?"

"I have heard stories about aliens with gems on them…" Tippi said. "And that there was a war… but some people think that it's just a myth."

"And, Timmy, you're also lucky to have magical fairies that can grant your every wish." Peach said.

"Yeah, just thank my evil babysitter, Vicky." Timmy said. "Also, now that you know about my fairy god parents, your memories will have to be erased."

"Actually, that won't happen, Timmy Turner." Jorgen explained. "Because you're the Chosen One, and I owe you one!"

Suddenly, in front of where KISS was playing, lightning struck. A ball of electricity appeared, and then, in its place, was a person. The person at first was facing backward, but then turned to face the crowd. This person was tall, and had a striking resemblance to Timmy.

"At last!" The person said. "I, Turbo Thunder, the Chosen One, have completed my training and have arrived to obtain the White Wand, and to light the Darkness!" Turbo Thunder scanned around, and then found Timmy holding the White Wand.

"And there it is!" Turbo pointed to the wand. "From titanium teeth and pits of wonder, sing White Wand, with Turbo Thunder!" Extending his arm out, he used magic to grab the White Wand and pulled it to him. "Stand down, evil space hole of destruction!" He prepared to play the guitar.

But when he looked at the sky, he saw that the Darkness was not there, but instead, stars filled the sky. "Where's the big scary space hole?" Turbo asked. "There's supposed to be a big scary space hole! Am I late?"

Timmy knew that the picture from before didn't look right. Even though it had been similar, he now knew that it was not himself. It was… the actual Chosen One. He glared at Jorgen. "Are you telling me he's the Chosen One? This whole time! It wasn't me?"

"I knew there was something off about that cave drawing." Junior commented.

Jorgen glared at Junior for a moment. "Look, both of you saw the cave drawing too!" Jorgen pulled up a picture of the drawing, and listed off the similarities. "Pink hat, buck teeth, initials TT, I'm not perfect, okay?

"There's something I'm wondering about." Violet cut in. "Just why did you go through all the trouble of erasing everyone's memories of Timmy before bringing him to the Cave Of Destiny?"

"At the time, I wasn't sure if it was the right thing to do." Jorgen explained. "But after seeing that there was no other choice, I took him to the cave."

Then, Gene sent out a shockwave from his guitar that made Turbo fly backward and crash into an amp. At that, the fairies cheered.

In the sky, a group of fairy warriors made up the constellation known as the Big Dipper. One of them talked into a walkie-talkie. "This is the Big Dipper Brigade, we're clear in the night sky." However, he frowned as he heard a low scream. "Wh-what is- oh no!" He shielded his face and in the process, dropped the walkie-talkie.

Around an hour later, everyone was about to say their goodbyes. Mario, Peach, Violet, Tippi, and Junior were about to head to Flipside, and Timmy and the three fairies weren't sure what they were going to do yet.

But, before the goodbyes actually began, Junior wanted to speak to Timmy for a moment, alone. Timmy was a little confused, but he decided to go along with it, so they walked out of earshot of everyone else.

For a moment, Junior didn't know what to say. But after several seconds, he asked the simple question: "Why?"

"Why what?" Timmy asked, unsure of what Junior meant.

"Look, I know I was a jerk. And I did one of the most unforgivable acts I ever could've done to another kid, and I just want to know: Why do you choose to forgive me?" Junior asked.

Timmy took a deep breath. "Look, I am not one to hold grudges often. And I may have poked a wrong nerve with you that caused you to… do that. And I'm sorry about that."

"I'm the one that should be sorry!" Junior argued. "I'm the one that… slashed you across the face. And you have that scar…"

"Nobody will notice it." Timmy shrugged. "And hey, stop focusing on all that stuff in the past. It's about right now that matters."

"Well right now I feel guilt, anger, sadness, and-"

"Look, let's just try to put that whole thing behind us." Timmy said. "And besides, we did fulfill our promises to each other, didn't we?"

"What do you mean?" Junior asked.

"Well, without your help, I wouldn't have been able to work up the courage to play the White Wand so I could defeat the Darkness. And, I brought you to some people that know your dad, even if it isn't in the most friendly of terms, so you'll be able to find your dad."

Junior analyzed all of this. Even though he still hadn't found his dad yet, he was at least a little closer. And he had Timmy to thank for that. So, without warning, he pulled Timmy into a hug for a couple of seconds, and then pulled back.

"Thanks… for all that you've helped me with." Junior said.

"No problem." Timmy responded. And then, the two walked back to where the others were waiting.

"So, I guess this is goodbye." Mario said. "Even if we did just meet."

"Though… I do have the feeling that all of us will meet again…" Tippi pondered.

"Well, it was nice to get to meet you, Mario and Peach." Wanda said.

"And it was nice to meet all of you." Peach said. "But now, we have to get back to Flipside so we can continue our quest."

"Well, see you all later!" Violet said.

Mario, Peach, Junior, Violet, and Tippi got close to each other and waved goodbye; save for Tippi. Then, Mario used the Return Pipe. Slowly, the five of them began spinning, and it slowly became faster until they disappeared altogether.

There was silence for a moment.

"Well, they were a nice bunch of people." Wanda commented.

"And it's good to know that everything is back to normal." Timmy added.

"Except for the fact that they have to stop a purple black hole from destroying everything and they only have a limited amount of time to do so?" Cosmo asked, his intelligence suddenly spiking for a moment.

"They'll be able to handle it." Timmy responded.

"So, what should we do now?" Wanda asked.

Cosmo and Timmy looked at each other with smiles on their faces. "Keep partying!" They both cheered. They both ran off, while Wanda groaned and flew after them with Poof.

Though nobody noticed it, the stars that made up the Big Dipper suddenly disappeared. And, if one were to look close enough, they would be able to see the Void; though small right now, it would certainly grow bigger over time.

And yet, even if it did, Mario and the others would find the rest of the heroes and Pure Hearts in order to stop it…


Call begin.


A screen.

"… Yellow? Are you there?"

" Yes, Blue, what is it?"

" Haven't you heard about that mass of Darkness that's been floating around?"

" It's probably nothing."

" Yellow, what if it's something serious? And don't forget about that mass of purple that we can't figure out the origin of."

" That's definitely a bigger problem." A pause. "I'm sure if we wait, it'll sort itself out."

" But… some of our highest soldiers have reported that the purple mass has only gotten bigger over time. Yellow, I'm worried."

" Alright, Blue. If this gets to be too much of a problem, maybe I can see if White will be able to solve it."

"… Thank you."

" You're welcome."

Call end.



End Of The Big Beginning

Stay Tuned For  The Exciting Middle Part

Chapter Text

In Beach City, there existed 4 beings who called themselves the Crystal Gems. The current leader was Garnet, and the other three were Pearl, Amethyst, and Steven. But it wasn't always like that.

Before, the leader was Rose Quartz. Rose Quartz saw all life as precious and worth living on her planet, so she, Pearl, who belonged to no one, and eventually Garnet, the fusion of a Ruby and Sapphire, along with many other Crystal Gems, fought against their Homeworld in what was known as "The Rebellion" to fight for life on the planet Earth. But even though they won, it came at a grave cost.

Only Rose and the Gems closest to her, Pearl and Garnet were able to survive the corruption attack thanks to her shield. The corruption attack made every other Crystal Gem into a monster. All of the corrupted Crystal Gems would

Fast forward 4000 years, including Amethyst who they found 500 years after the corruption attack, were all trying to contain the corrupted Crystal Gems, because it was the best they could do for them. Even though Rose had healing tears, it would do nothing to save any corrupted Gem.

And so, they built their base, otherwise known as the Temple, in what would be eventually called Beach City. In 1996, they hadn't expected Rose to fall in love. After being the only attendant to a small show performed by a man named Greg Universe, the man almost instantly fell in love with her, and he gave up his dream to stay in Beach City with her.

And so, a couple years later, they had made the ultimate decision as a couple, to have a baby. But it came at a cost. Rose Quartz would have to sacrifice her gem and her physical form to be able to give birth. Even though the other three gems protested this at first, Rose eventually made them believe it was the right choice. And so, 9 months later, their son was born.


At first, the other three Gems were distant from their new addition, as Steven lived in his father's van for several years of his life. But eventually, the Gems built a house addition to the temple, because of Rose's last request to the gems: teach Steven how to use his Gem.

And so, Steven was a Crystal Gem. Though at first, he was rarely able to go on missions, he was content with waiting for his guardians' return. But when Steven was 13, things began to change.

Aside from befriending Connie, and getting a pink lion was a pet (which he named Lion) when Steven wanted to know more about Gem history, Pearl gave him a mirror with a gem embedded on the back of it. At first, it did nothing. But when Steven was alone with it…

It talked to him. And then, even at the other Gems' disapproval, he let the gem free from the mirror. And when he did, a new gem formed named Lapis Lazuli. She told Steven not to trust the Gems before she headed off, into the ocean.

The next day, all the water in the ocean around Beach City was gone. The reason? Lapis Lazuli trying to use the water to build a tower so she could get back home, and tried to fight the others off with water clones, all while her Gem was cracked.

But not too long before that, Steven figured out he could heal people, but it was with his spit, not his tears, which he figured out when Connie drank his backwash from an apple juice box, and she no longer needed to wear glasses. Steven used his healing spit on Lapis's Gem, so she was free to fly away, back home.

A couple months later, Steven ran into yet a new Gem, though this one wasn't as nice. Peridot. They first saw her at the Galaxy Warp, when the warp to Homeworld was restored, but only for a short period of time, because when Peridot when back through the warp, Garnet destroyed the warp pad, preventing her from coming back.

That wasn't the last time they encountered Peridot. Later, they followed one of her robonoids to a hidden lair under the Kindergarten, the place where Amethyst popped out 3,500 years earlier. They found Peridot transmitting though a screen, and before she could finish what she had planned, Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl destroyed what she was doing.

Not too long after that, they got a video message from Lapis. Peridot was using her to get information on Earth. Lapis warned them that agents from Homeworld were coming to Earth, and fast.

But even though the Crystal Gems knew that Homeworld agents were coming to Earth, they could do nothing to prepare themselves. A few days later, said agents came to Earth on a giant ship that looked like a hand. There were two agents, and also Lapis had been forced to come with them. Though they recognized one of the agents, Peridot, none of them knew who the other one was.

And she was Jasper, a tough Quartz soldier. She thought that Steven was Rose Quartz once he used the shield to protect the other Crystal Gems from an attack from the handship. And so, the Homeworld Gems captured all of the Crystal Gems and set them on a course for Homeworld.

But Steven wasn't going to let them. Steven ran through the handship while avoiding Jasper and Peridot. He found two new Gems, who were named Ruby and Sapphire. And, he also found Lapis being held captive, though the blue gem blamed herself for all this and didn't want to be rescued.

Steven soon figured out, though, that Ruby and Sapphire weren't new Gems at all. Because upon being reunited, they fused… into Garnet. Garnet fought Jasper off and destroyed the main power source of the ship while Steven rescued Pearl and Amethyst while managing to subdue Peridot.

But Peridot ended up escaping in a little ship just before it went on a crash course into Beach City. Thanks to Steven's bubble, the four Crystal Gems were unharmed at the handship crashing right next to the temple.

Enraged, Jasper needed a way to get revenge on them. And soon, she found her answer. Nearly forgotten, Lapis tried to escape, only to be caught by Jasper. The orange gem asked Lapis to fuse with her, at Steven's dismay. Lapis did end up fusing with Jasper, though for an entirely different reason.

For revenge for being a prisoner nearly her entire life, she fused with Jasper, making them Malachite, and trapped herself in the ocean. In the aftermath, though, Steven started to isolate himself from all humans. Of course, Connie, Steven's only friend, was upset by this. But in the end, the two managed to work it out.

Then, Steven and the other three gems had to clean up the remains of the ship. But one night, Steven hung out and went on a drive with the cool kids, and during that, they found Peridot's escape pod in a field. After some shenanigans, the Gems found it and brought it back to the temple.

While going back to the Kindergarten a while later, Steven found Peridot there, though she managed to escape. Steven and Garnet went down to where they previously saw Peridot for the second time ever, and they found something horrifying.

Previous Crystal Gems that had been shattered… and their gems were stuck together. After that discovery, they found Peridot trying to contact Homeworld from a transmitter that broadcasted throughout the entire world.

But even though they did destroy what she was contacting them with… Pearl and Garnet did hold enmity for a little bit because of something that happened with the two of them. But they did work it out in the end, and the next time they found Peridot, they nearly caught her, but she detached what they were hanging onto, which was the foot limb enhancer.

Connie and Steven soon ran into more Gem Mutants at a hospital, which they managed to defeat. And then… the Gems were able to capture Peridot. They were finally able to poof her and send her to the temple, Peridot losing her limb enhancers. But before she did, she nearly revealed something that could've been very important to all of them.

And yet, she couldn't. That was why Steven ended up unbubbling her so she could tell them about what she called, "The Cluster". And after some coaxing, she finally told them what it what. The Cluster lied at the very center of the Earth's core. It was a geoweapon made from millions of Gem shards, and once it emerged, it would instantly destroy the Earth.

Of course, the Crystal Gems had to stop it. So, Peridot had to team up with them as they went to the barn just outside of Beach City to build a drill that could lead them to the Cluster. Though at first, there were a lot of disagreements especially between Pearl and Peridot. Steven then suggested that they build robots, and the winner would be the one in charge. Though Peridot did win, all the praise went to Pearl. And so, they decided to work together and not claim one specific leader.

But, even though they were making steady progress on it, they still had to do a lot of work on it. Would they build the drill and stop the Cluster before their unknown time limit ran out? Only time would tell…

Today's meeting in Count Bleck's castle was just Count Bleck and Nastasia. They were alone.

"…Yeah, so I just got a brief memo from Mimi?" Nastasia said, her tone inflicting a question. "It says, "I messed up bad!" …That's the message in its entirety. Yeah…"

Count Bleck laughed a little. "She failed to best him, even with my gift of power?" He asked. "A Light Prognosticus Hero… Descendants of the ancient tribe… Their strength grows." Count Bleck was about to continue, but someone else suddenly yelled.

"Count Bleck!" The other person said. After a moment, he jumped into the room, revealing himself to be O'Chunks. "I beg yeh, gimme the honor o' whalin' on this pack o' nambly-pamblies!" He pleaded. "I swear on me whiskers that I'll spank 'em like naughty little Cherbils, I will!"

"Oh, so, O'Chunks, yeah, you think you're all set to go?" Nastasia asked. "So I guess you finished up that report on your own inadequacy that I needed?"

O'Chunks got nervous. "Eah… Y'see… I…just got a wee bit left. I'm working on me conclusion." He explained. "Yeh gotta gimme a break! Me writin' takes time, lass! An' 1,000 pages be a lot!"

"O'Chunks, calm yourself." Count Bleck said. "Take a minion time-out. Count Bleck will send…" Count Bleck opened his cape. "Dimentio! Come to me… Count Bleck!"

Dimentio soon appeared, floating in front of Count Bleck. "And so I arrive, like a sudden windstorm at a kindergarten picnic!" Dimentio said.

Count Bleck laughed. "You'd like some playtime, I imagine, Dimentio?" He asked. "So you shall have it, but do not disappoint Count Bleck. Dispatch this hero."

"Your wish is my command. Besides, this fool sounds like an amusing challenge." Dimentio commented. "Now if there is nothing else, I'll just be on my way. Ciao, my count." Dimentio then disappeared.

"Yeah, so, O'Chunks?" Nastasia asked. "Can you fill me in on why you're still not writing that report?"

"A report? What are yeh… Oh Yeah." O'Chunks said, forgetting about his report for a moment before remembering it. "A'right, I'm goin', yeh great beard-tweaker!" O'Chunks then left.

And it was back to Count Bleck and Nastasia. "Count, let me just bring you up to speed on the current state of the castle…" Nastasia said. "I still have to root out a few unconverted rogues, but I'll report back soon…" Nastasia bowed and took her leave.

Count Bleck was back to being alone. "Heroes… Trying to save these pathetic old worlds. Bleck, says Count Bleck." Count Bleck paused. "Their efforts are in vain. No one can stop Count Bleck!"

" Especially not when I'm his minion!"

Bill Cipher's voice rang out as the already black room somehow turned into a low, dull, gray, as the triangle himself teleported into the room. "Well, good ol' Count of mine! How've you been?"

"Bill Cipher… Count Bleck assumes you've done your job?" Count Bleck asked.

"Oh, don't worry about it. I've got Jumpman all tied up with other problems, he doesn't know a thing about what's really going on!" Bill said before he laughed.

"Good…" Count Bleck responded. "Bill, why don't you make yourself useful and help Nastasia round up the remaining rebels?"

"Sure Count, I don't have anything else useful going on." Bill said. "Well, I'll see ya later!" Bill then disappeared, and the room turned back to normal.

"And now, Count Bleck has some of his own matters to take care of…" Count Bleck said, leaving and taking the Dark Prognosticus with him.

"Just as no one can ease the tempest that rages in my suffering heart…"

" You're late. Did something happen?"

" Yes, my father caught me. Sneaking out of the castle wasn't easy after that."

" I was worried you wouldn't come…"

" You are a strange girl… You know what I am and yet you do not seem afraid."

" I don't care what you are. I just wanted to see you. Is that… Is that so wrong?"

" No. No, of course not. I wanted to see you too…"

" Blumiere… Do you mind if I sit next to you?"

" Please do, Timpani. Let's return to our conversation. I must know more of you…"

It was just another hard day of work at the barn, trying to stop the Cluster. Currently, Peridot was in said barn, saying something into a tape recorder that was currently recording.

"Log Date 7 11 2," Peridot began. "It's the third rotation of the Earth since commencemance of a… collaborative approach to stopping the Cluster." She cringed at saying the word 'collaborative'.

Just outside of the barn, Pearl was drawing blueprints on a chalkboard while Steven and Amethyst watched. "I finished drawing up blueprints for the drill head." Pearl called out, and then peeked inside the barn. "Peridot! Can you come take a look at this?"

Peridot begrudgingly stopped her recording and walked outside. "Remind me again why I should listen to you?" She questioned rhetorically to Pearl. "Oh right," She said upon rewinding the tape.

"The Pearl here has exhibited an aptitude for engineering which I begrudgingly respect," The recording of Peridot began, "Though that doesn't explain the spontaneous singing, crying, singing while crying."

While Amethyst laughed a little at this, Pearl was more than annoyed. "Why did you give her that?" She questioned to Steven.

"Well, we did destroy all her stuff." Steven explained. "I thought it might make her feel a little better."

As if to emphasize Steven's point, Peridot rewound the tape. "Clod!" More rewinding. "Muddy clod!" And yet again. "Running out of ways to say clod!"

Just then, Garnet walked up, a weed in her mouth. "Alright, I chased away those cows. Let's get to work." She said.

"Before we begin, would you mind unfusing?" Peridot asked Garnet. "It's making me incredibly uncomfortable."

Steven, Pearl, and Amethyst nervously looked at Garnet, knowing that the permafusion wouldn't take kindly to that question from the oblivious Peridot. So, what Garnet did, was she took Peridot over to a fence, locked her in a belt that would be used for a young child in a car, and then tied the rope to it to said fence.

"What'd I say?" Peridot asked in confusion as Garnet walked away.

"Do we really have to do that?" Steven asked.

"Her having free reign of the place made me incredibly uncomfortable." Garnet simply answered.

Peridot tried to walk over to a discarded microwave for spare parts, but the length of the rope prevented her from doing so. So instead, she tried to reach for it with her foot, only to knock it further away.

A little bit later, Steven and Amethyst brought over more parts for the drill head, while Pearl was working on it and using a safety mask.

"Here you go, Pearl." Steven said, both him and Amethyst dropping the parts. Pearl took off her mask and for a moment she was happy, but her smile turned to a frown at looking at the parts.

"No, I said I needed tungsten." Pearl explained. "Tungsten?"

"Uh… what does tungsten look like?" Steven asked.

Amethyst stuck out her tongue in a joking manner, and then Pearl sighed. "Never mind. I'll do it." Pearl said as she walked off.

Steven and Amethyst saw Peridot groaning in frustration, so the two walked over to her. Peridot had finally gotten the microwave, but wasn't able to do anything with it. "I need some sort of leverage optimizer." She grumbled to herself.

"Leverage optimizer?" Amethyst asked.

"That's what I said. Leverage optimizer." Peridot repeated.

Amethyst then realized what Peridot wanted. "Ooh, you mean you want a screwdriver?" She laughed a little.

"Do you have one or not?" Peridot asked.

"Why don't you just use this one?" Steven asked as he found a screwdriver on the ground and picked it up.

"Because it was outside my radius." Peridot answered, taking the screwdriver.

Amethyst, still laughing, decided to have a little more fun with Peridot. "Hey Peridot, what do you call this?" She pointed to her nose.

"Sense bunch." Peridot plainly answered. While Steven was confused, Amethyst laughed some more.

"Okay, what's this?" Amethyst pointed to her eye.

"Vision sphere." Peridot answered yet again.

"Peridot, that's-" Steven was about to say, but Amethyst interrupted him.

"Wait, wait, Steven." Amethyst said. "Peridot, these?" She moved her fingers around.

"Touch stumps." Peridot answered, clearly getting annoyed.

"This?" Amethyst pointed to one of her feet.

"Gravity connecters."

"This?" Amethyst pointed to her butt.

"THAT'S YOUR BUTT!" Peridot practically yelled.

At that, Steven and Amethyst began laughing out of the sheer absurdity of all of Peridot's answered. "Oh, Peridot, you're killing me!" Steven said in between laughs.

"I am not! That would violate our truce agreement." Peridot argued.

Still laughing, Amethyst tried to explain it to Peridot. "No no no! He means you're funny!"

"…Funny?" Peridot asked, clearly confused.

Before Steven or Amethyst could explain, Pearl walked over to them. "Peridot, if you can get the magnetron out of that microwave, we'll have everything we need; except for the drill head." Pearl explained.

"Why don't I just get an injector drill head from the Kindergarten?" Peridot suggested.

"Oh…" Pearl said. "I guess that's something we can try."

"She's not going to the Kindergarten without a chaperone!" Garnet called out.

"You've got to be joking!" Peridot responded.

Garnet set down some tires she was carrying. "You'll know when I'm joking." She explained.

Though Peridot wasn't sure how to respond, Amethyst did it for her. "Me and Steven can come with her."

"Yeah, we'll keep an eye on her." Steven agreed as Garnet walked over.

For a moment, Garnet didn't say anything. But when she did, she said, "Approved. Keep her in line, Amethyst."

"You got it!" Amethyst cheered.

Peridot groaned, clearly annoyed.

Chapter Text

Mario, Peach, Violet, Junior and Tippi exited the Return Pipe, bringing them to Flipside. While Mario and Peach had already gotten accustomed to Flipside because of how much they've been there, the other two hadn't, so they were kind of amazed to see it for the first time.

"So, this is Flipside?" Violet asked.

"Yep, this is it." Mario answered.

About a second later, Merlon walked up to them, a little surprised at them coming out of the Return Pipe instead of the orange door.

"Oh ho, welcome back friends!" Merlon greeted. "Ah, I see you've brought a few more with you! Mind if I know your names?"

"I'm Violet." Violet answered.

"And I'm… Junior." Junior answered with hesitance.

"Nice to meet you, Violet and Junior!" Merlon said. "Anyway, how was your journey? Did you find Merlee and obtain the Pure Heart?"

"Yes, as a matter of fact, we did." Peach answered.

"Though we didn't find Junior or Violet until after we got the Pure Heart itself." Mario added.

"Oh? Care to give me the details?" Merlon asked. "In fact… why don't you explain at my house…"

Merlon took in the information that he was given, about most of what Junior and Violet went through before running into Mario, Peach, and Tippi. "I must say, that was an odd tale." Merlon commented. "With those Eliminator robots, a riddle, and something called, 'The Darkness?' I'd be less inclined to believe it if we weren't experiencing an even stranger tale right now…"

"You know…" Tippi started. "Merlee said that we would need the power of ten heroes to save the world… Yes, Merlee said that…"

"Oh ho, is that so? There is more than one hero?" Merlon asked. "Well, if you four are such heroes, then you still need six more…"

Without warning, the ground shook. Everyone inside ran outside to see what was going on. For a moment, nothing happened. But then, The Void, which at first didn't take up too much space, but it did something none of them expected.

It grew in size.

"The Void has grown…" Merlon said. "Hmmm… I fear that our time grows short, dear friends… I will return to reading the Light Prognosticus. You young ones seek the next Heart Pillar." Merlon begun to walk back to his house before he turned around and remembered something.

"But first… Allow me to tell of something that mystical book has already divulged to me. One person will determine whether the Light or Dark Prognosticus predicts truly… Both books refer to him as the "man in green," but I know not what this means… I must return to my study to solve this conundrum." Merlon walked into his house and shut the door.

'Man in green…' Mario thought. Why did that sound so familiar?

"So, what should we do now?" Violet asked. "Should we go ahead and put the Pure Heart in the Heart Pillar, or…"

"Normally, I would've wanted us to go to bed since I'm sure it's been a while since we slept, but I think we should go ahead and go get the next Pure Heart." Mario explained. "Who knows when The Void will grow bigger next."

"Yeah, I agree with you, Mario." Peach said. "Even if I do feel tired, I'm sure sleep can wait. It won't be that damaging to our bodies. But can we get something to eat first?"

"Yeah, can we? I'm starved." Junior said.

"Yes, it would be a good idea to eat." Mario agreed. "But Violet, I need to talk to you about something important first. And I want to talk alone."

"Uh, alright." Violet said with a sigh.

Peach and Junior went into the item shop to get some food while Mario and Violet stayed outside. While Violet was wondering what Mario was going to say, the plumber himself knew exactly.

"Alright, Mario, what is it?" Violet asked, after several seconds of anticipation.

Mario sighed. "Violet, remember that party from a couple days ago?"

"Yeah, what about it?" Violet asked.

"I need you to tell me exactly what happened at that party." Mario explained. "Please, Violet, this is important."

"Well…" Violet started. Mario waited. "You and Luigi had a mutual agreement with us that Luigi didn't want his birthday to be celebrated that year. He said that he wanted you to be more in the spotlight."

Mario was appalled. No… That couldn't have been it. But… he almost always knew if Violet was lying. And right now, it looked like she wasn't. "You're absolutely sure about this?"

"Yes, I am." Violet said.

"Alright… I need to sit down for a moment." Mario said. Holding his head, he walked and then sat down on a bench.

Nothing made any sense to him anymore. Every story he heard was different from the last. Just which one was true? Mario sighed. And to add to the weirdness of it all, now that he thought about it, he couldn't help but feel that his encounter with that triangle felt… familiar. He didn't know why or how, though. It just didn't make any sense.

Mario felt a touch to his shoulder, snapping him out of his thoughts. He looked up, and saw Peach holding a bag of food and a drink for him.

"Here Mario, I got you some food." Peach said.

"Oh, thanks." Mario responded.

"Hey, why don't you come sit down with us?" Peach asked. She gestured over to the nearby table where the others were sitting down.

"…Sure." Mario said with a slightly forced smile. He needed to remain positive. It was mentally taxing for him to be trying to focus on both collecting the Pure Hearts and the mystery of the party at the same time.

Mario and Peach walked over to the table and sat down with the others. Tippi was taking a small nap on the table, while Junior and Violet were eating their food. While they ate, Peach explained to Mario that she was able to give Violet and Junior the ability to flip, the same way that Mario had previously accidentally given it to her.

After they all finished their food and woke Tippi up, they set off to find the next Heart Pillar. Mario, Peach, and Tippi showed them through the gate in Flipside, which could only be seen by using the flip technique. They went along the path that the first three had been on before, and saw a pipe from before that was blocked by a couple of red blocks.

They used Boomer to get rid of the red blocks and went through the pipe. Once through, they were now in a room below Flipside. Though it was indoors, there were large stained glass windows that showed the Void, reminding them of what little time they had. On the path ahead, there were few enemies, along with a big red block that they couldn't destroy, so they decided to ignore it. There was also a pipe that they chose to ignore, and at the end of the room was a wall with a small crack in it. Using Slim, they went through the crack.

And on the other side was the Heart Pillar.

They immediately put the Pure Heart in the Heart Pillar. As the other two did before, it glowed yellow, and then a yellow beam shot up into the sky.

Not wanting to waste any more time, they used the Return Pipe to go back to the upper floor with the doors. And so they saw the brand new yellow door. After checking to make sure everything was in order, they went through it, starting the next chapter of their journey.

"Ooh… My head…"

Luigi woke up. How long has it been since he was awake? Days? Even though he didn't feel it at first, he was famished. The last time he ate was at the party… what was it for again? A statue or something?

Luigi stood up and looked at his surroundings. "…Hey! Where am I?" He was standing on some sort of black floor, and the sky was a ghostly purple, with some parts being brighter than others.

Wait… what else happened before he got here? "Oh yeah, now I remember! Violet and I were saving Princess Peach, but I screwed it up, and…"

"You awake, Green?"

Luigi quickly spun around at this new voice and was prepared to fight, only to see it was a couple Goombas. He lowered his guard. "Yeah… Hey there, uh, bad guys. You doing all right?"

"Yeah, we're doing okay." Goomba 2 answered. "Good to see you made it!" 'Figured he was done… Dude is tougher than he looks.'

"So yeah…kinda awkward… Say, have you guys seen the princes and Bowser?" Luigi asked.

"Nope, not so much." Goomba 1 answered. "You're the only one we found lying around here. Hopefully, they're okay." 'Get a load of this moron! Who cares about his friends?'

"Near as we can figure, most of the other minions got captured or something." Goomba 2 explained. "And we're probably next!" 'Why is this dude so calm? We're behind enemy lines!'

"So… Luigi, old buddy! What do you think about getting out of here?" Goomba 1 asked. "We're thinking maybe you open up a path for us…and we all bail. Whatcha think?"

Luigi shook his head. "No… I… I couldn't possibly! I've gotta save the princess! And my girlfriend!"

"Man…wow." Goomba 2 said. "Did NOT expect that. All those stories about Great Luigi's daring exploits… We'd heard you were the defender of the helpless! We have no one else!"

Luigi was a little shocked at that. "The G-Great Luigi, you say? A… A daring defender? …Me?" Luigi went into a fighting stance. "Then I've got no choice! Luigi must spring into action! My fans need me!"

"Oh, you are the BEST!" Goomba 2 cheered. 'Man, that was way too easy. What a sucker!'

"We're right behind you!" Goomba 1 added. 'But the second the going gets rough, we BAIL!'

"Then follow ME, brave…er… Goombas! Here we go!" Luigi said. The tall plumber then looked around, trying to find an exit. And soon, he did. "There's a door over there. Let's see where it leads to."

The three walked through the door. In the next room, they saw that they were inside the actual castle. There were tall candles lit with black fire, and the black walls were lined with strange white images. In fact, everything in the castle except for Luigi and the Goombas seemed to just be black and white.

There were stairs ahead of them that led to a lower floor. On the lower floor, at the end of the hallway, there was another door. The three went through the door.

And in the next room, it was just a short hallway leading to another door. In the next room, they were still in the castle, but there were windows as tall as the room itself. The three walked through the room, though Luigi was going at a slightly faster pace.

Though Luigi didn't notice, because after about a minute one of the Goombas called out, "Great Luigi! Wait for us!" Luigi stopped to allow both Goombas to catch up with him. Though when they did, Goomba 1 noticed something and walked ahead.

"Uh oh… Looks like the end of the line here." Goomba 1 said.

"Oh boy… Looks like you're right." Luigi said. "Now what do we do?"

"Uh… Shouldn't we look for another way out, maybe?" Goomba 2 asked. 'This guy's useless.' "If we stay put, someone is definitely going to spot-" Goomba 2's sentence was interrupted as he was suddenly overtaken by a spell.

Goomba 2 was dazed for a couple seconds before he said something that chilled Luigi's core. "HAIL BLECK!" He walked away.

"Gary! No!" Goomba 1 yelled.

"Hm-mm-mm… I've been looking all OVER for you." Another voice said. It was Nastasia, and behind her were several brainwashed members of Bowser's troop.

"YOU!" Luigi yelled. He remembered her. She was one of the people that orchestrated the whole thing at the wedding.

"Yeah, you're that guy who really wasn't a team player back at the wedding…" Nastasia commented. "You're gonna need a little disciplinary action, I think… So let's get started, hm? I've already got someone in mind for you…" She walked closer to Luigi and Goomba 1.

"Oh man… Poor Gary…" Goomba 1 said. "All right! It's time for me to Goomba-up!" He did the only thing he could think of, and walked over to Nastasia. "Hey, lady! Got room for one more on your team?"

Luigi was obviously shocked. "Whah? Hey! Wait a second! What are you DOING?" He questioned.

"What's it look like, genius? I'm getting with the winning team!" Goomba 1 answered.

"Yeah, good call. Love the enthusiasm, there." Nastasia said. "Go ahead and swear your, y'know, undying loyalty to the count, and you're on board."

"Hey, count me in, lady! Here we go, count, here we go! Love that count!" Goomba 1 yelled.

Never in Luigi's life had he felt more appalled. What he just witnessed almost made him feel sick. "You… You dirty TRAITOR!" Luigi spat out.

"Okay, guys, new agenda? Hold this fool down so I can get his priorities on track…" Nastasia said. "And take him to the room where he will help him…"

"YES MAM!" All of the present minions said. They rushed over to Luigi and forcefully grabbed him. Luigi tried to struggle, to try to fight back. But he could do nothing, as their grips were unbelievably tight. And, true to Nastasia's word, they started to drag him somewhere.

"Ack! Wh-Whoa! Hey! No! Mario, where are you! HELP!" Luigi screamed. But he was interrupted as he felt a sharp hit to his head, soon making him unconscious…

And the last he saw… was a faint flash of a triangle.

"Log Date 7 11 2," Peridot began. She, Steven and Amethyst were all in the Kindergarten now, trying to break down of the old injector drills. "The Amethyst and Steven have volunteered to help me dismantle this Era 1 drill." Peridot leaned against said drill. "How stylistically displeasing. The newer ones have a nicer finish."

"You making more nerd notes?" Amethyst commented, taking a small break.

"…What is… nerd?" Peridot asked, taking a break from her recording. As Amethyst stifled laughter, Peridot grew annoyed. "Can you use it in a sentence?"

Amethyst cleared her throat. "Nerd. You are a nerd." The purple gem began laughing while Peridot stared at her, dumbfounded. Steven stopped what he was doing and jumped down to Amethyst.

"Amethyst, cut that out!" Steven said, though that hardly did anything to stop Amethyst's laughter.

Peridot continued her recording into her tape. "As you can see, this planet is annoying and everything is annoying. Amongst it's transgressions, is the need for the Amethyst to ask permission from the permafusion."

"Permafusion? Is that what you call Garnet?" Amethyst asked.

"Well, I could call her lots of things." Peridot answered as she set down her tape recorder. I could call her two things. Two clods! Walking around like she's one clod!" Peridot chortled in laughter.

"What's wrong with that?" Steven asked.

"She's not even fighting!" Peridot answered. "She's, just, you know, she's, you know, like a…" Peridot tried to motion to something slowly knocking her fists together. "You know!"

Amethyst burst out in laughter, unable to keep it in any longer while Steven tried to imitate the same motion Peridot did. "You're a real gem, Peri." Amethyst said.

"Yes. I am. A gem." Peridot said.

"Okay okay, do Steven next. What's weird about Steven?" Amethyst asked, poking Steven.

"Where do I even begin?" Peridot questioned. "He's some sort of hybrid abomination. I don't even understand how he functions! His organic half consumes so much energy that he has to constantly feed, and he spends so much time expelling, he has a whole room dedicated to it!"

While Amethyst laughed at this, Steven blushed from embarrassment. "Uh, something else, talk about something else!" He quickly said.

For a moment, Peridot couldn't think of anything to say. But when she turned around and saw Amethyst laughing, she herself began laughing.

"The strangest thing is, Amethyst, is you think you have to listen to them!" Peridot said before laughing once more. "You're the one who should be in charge!"

Amethyst laughed a little more, assuming Peridot's statement was a joke. "That's your best joke yet."

"No, really." Peridot responded. "Pearl is a pearl, Garnet is a fusion, and I don't even know what he's supposed to be." She said, referring to Steven.

"Hey!" Steven responded, not liking what Peridot said.

"You're the only Crystal Gem that's actually a Gem." Peridot explained.

Amethyst nervously laughed. "What?"

"You outrank everyone on your team." Peridot continued. "They should be listening to you. You're a strong, singular, fully functional soldier. Despite the fact that you're defective."

Amethyst froze. "Defective?"

"Well, sure." Peridot chuckled. "You're small."


"Well, you're not supposed to be. Hold on. Wait, wait." Peridot looked over at the many holes lining the walls of the kindergarten, and she pointed to a particularly short one "Let me guess… this is the hole you came out of."

All three of them walked over to said hole as Peridot examined it. "Too small, too low, the exit marks look about 500 years younger. Hmm… this place must've been empty when you came out. No wonder you have no idea what you're supposed to look like!"

"Peridot…" Steven said, trying to get Peridot to stop, but Amethyst put her hand on Steven's shoulder to interrupt him.

"What was I supposed to look like?" Amethyst questioned.

"Well, you're a Quartz. They're huge, loyal soldiers." Peridot explained as she hopped onto one of the broken drill heads. "You should be twice your size, broad-shouldered, intimidating, but you simply stayed in the ground too long." Peridot emphasized her point by showing the length of normal Quartz in scale to her fingers, and on the other hand did the same thing but half the size.

"Are you saying I'm wrong?" Amethyst asked.

Peridot laughed. "Gemetically speaking, yes. When you think about it, it's all so funny."

"Amethyst?" Steven asked. He looked at Amethyst. He could see the low anger in her eyes, how she felt betrayed and angered at the fact that she was not normal.

"Hey, soldier. Maybe you could help me get this hunk of drill off." Peridot suggested. Amethyst quickly summoned her whip from her gem and sliced off the large drill from the injector, causing it to fall to the ground and gather some dust.

"See, look at that!" Peridot said, running over to the drill. "You can do everything a normal Quartz can do! Let's head back and shove this thing in Pearl's face."

Steven looked over to the purple gem and saw she still had the same look on her face. "Amethyst, are you okay?" Steven asked.

"I'm fine." Amethyst said, though her expression didn't show it.

Fairy World was peaceful.

Many of the fairies were having the time of their lives enjoying the peacefulness after the recent events. One fairy was sniffing the flowers, a couple others were frolicking throughout the fields, and Cupid was walking his dog.

Though as Cupid's dog decided to sniff the flowers, something stepped in front of it, causing the dog to leap into Cupid's arms.

And it was an Eliminator.

"The Eliminators are back!" Cupid yelled.

At that, the other fairies screamed and ran as the Eliminators shot lasers from their eyes at them. "Eliminate Timmy Turner." An Eliminator said.

Just then, Timmy somehow jumped in, armed with the White Wand. "Don't you mean the Chosen One?" He asked before playing the wand.

The Eliminators tried to shoot lasers from their arm cannons, but Timmy was too quick for them as he shot a fire beam at all three Eliminators, destroying them. Timmy played a string of notes in victory before he saw the Lead Eliminator storm up to him.

"You cannot stop the Darkness." The Lead Eliminator said. It unleashed its vortex and quickly sucked in Timmy and the White Wand. Once finished, it closed its vortex. "The Chosen One is eliminated."

However, a second later, the Lead Eliminator started to spaz out. It held its stomach in pain for a moment before going into several other positions while groaning in pain. And then, cracks that shone light from started to appear all over its body before it finally exploded, leaving an untouched Timmy holding the White Wand.

"And you can't stop the Chosen One!" Timmy said. Letters lit up on the screen saying, YOU WIN! RANK: CHOSEN ONE and above it a couple seconds later, a points tally appeared which capped off at 11,501.

That whole thing hadn't happened at all. It was just a video game that Timmy was playing on a large stage in Fairy World, using a controller that looked exactly like the White Wand. He was in front of many fairy fans.

"And that's how you play the Chosen One video game." Timmy explained.

The large room he was in was full of his likeness. There was a large cutout of him, many banners showing the reveal of the new video game, and even test demos for fairies to play.

"I heard when you play this game, you feel like you're the Chosen One!" A fairy said to another.

"Don't call my house anymore, cause I'm gonna play this game 'til I die!" Another fairy said, clearly excited about the game.

All of the other fairies, though, were cheering "Chosen One" to Timmy, because of course; he was the one who stopped the Darkness.

"Awesome! Thousands of fans cheering for me!" Timmy said, waving to the fairies. "As they should." A couple seconds later, Cosmo, Wands, and Poof poofed in next to them; Wanda holding a clipboard.

"They love you, Timmy!" Wanda said. "You defeated the Darkness and saved Fairy World!"

"Though I can't give myself all the credit." Timmy said. "If it weren't for Mario and his friends, the Eliminators probably would've gotten to me a while ago."

"Yeah, all of you are like movie action heroes!" Cosmo pointed out. "Except you don't have rugged good looks, tight glutes, a trophy wife who loves you for your money as opposed to your first wife who loved you when you had nothing. And you don't have cool catchphrases."

"Hey, my glutes are very tight!" Timmy argued. "But I do need a cool action phrase like, 'don't touch my cheese!' or, 'hungry? how about a fillet of fist?'"

"Well, the fist one has some possibilities." Wanda commented. The continuous cheering went on in the background while all that was happening, and Timmy took a moment to embrace the cheering.

That is, until a flash of lighting burst on to the stage, and a second later, in it's place was Turbo Thunder. "Do not cheer for Timmy Turner!" Turbo protested. "I am the true Chosen One!"

"Oh no, here we go again." Timmy said, certain a repeat of what happened at the previous celebration would transpire.

"For it was I, Turbo Thunder, who trained himself for many years to harness my Turbo power to defeat the Darkness!" Turbo ranted while walking around the stage. "And I would have too, if I wasn't late."

"You stink!" A fairy from the back of the audience yelled.

"You won't think I stink when the Darkness returns and I save you with my mighty thunder pits!" Turbo yelled. Turbo started to activate his thunder pits while Timmy and his fairies ran away, but Turbo was interrupted by fairies booing at him while throwing tomatoes at him.

"Your thunder pits stink!" The same fairy from a minute ago yelled.

After the tomatoes stopped, Turbo looked around him. "Alright, I see it now! I guess since none of you here need me, I guess I'll just find some other fairies that believe me!" In rage, he stormed off, allowing Timmy's celebration to continue.

Chapter Text

Mario and co opened the door, unsure of what they would find.

All the while, Merlee's words about find ing  the "other heroes" rang in their minds.

Were these other heroes somewhere in this new world? If not, where?

Meanwhile, the creeping Void grew larger in the skies above Flipside.

The hopes of all worlds rested on the heroes finding the next Pure Heart…

The new world was… strange. Everything looked to have a blocky feel to it. The four walked around while Tippi floated a bit ahead.

"The way this world looks reminds me of an old video game or something," Violet commented.

"So this is where the door leads…" Tippi said. "I suppose the next Pure Heart must be nearby…" She turned around to face the group. "That's odd… I can feel it nearby, but where can it be…"

"Hm…" Mario pondered. "Maybe we should just look around this area, since it seems to be around here."

"Good idea, Mario." Peach said.

"Well, I'm-" Tippi started to say, but a second later something snatched her without warning, prompting her to momentarily scream. The group looked around. Tippi was nowhere to be seen. A few seconds later, there was a laugh that sounded like it came from a nerd.

And then, though it was highly improbable, a chameleon whose name was Francis revealed himself from being hidden. Francis had glasses on, wore a large yellow shirt with a mushroom on it, and had a camera strapped around his waist. "HI-TECHNICAL! I caught a super-rare pixelated butterfly!"

The four were stunned for a moment, though they soon assumed fighting stances.

"My friends at are going to freak when they get word of this find!" Francis said, clearly excited. "I must bring it home. I can't miss this week's episode of "The Grodus Chronicles"! No way am I going to entrust my digital Recordmeow to tape an episode so epic. This is so hi-technical!" Francis then turned around and camouflaged himself, disappearing from everyone's view.

"Wh-Wh-What the hell just happened?" Mario questioned. "That chameleon just…" He couldn't bring himself to say anything else. Of all things…

"It's alright, Mario." Peach said, trying to reassure the plumber. "We'll get her back."

"How?" Mario asked, turning to face her. "W-We don't even know where she is, and without her, we can't even get the-"

"Whoa-ho-ho! A kidnapping!" A new voice suddenly said, interrupting Mario. The group looked around, searching for the source of the voice. "Oh, the despair! The awful spectacle of it all!" There was a rustle in a nearby bush. "The shocking scene occurred right before my very own tender eyes! Well, I guess that's a wrap for that Pixl. Now that that freak Francis has got her…"

The group quickly walked over to the bush that the voice was coming from. Junior parted the bushes, only for the owner of the voice to come out. He was yet another Pixl, named Barry. His body was circular, with spikes around it.

"Whoa-ho!" Barry said, floating near them. "Who're these guys? Friends of the butterfly girl that got nabbed?"

"Yes, all of us are." Violet answered.

"Well, that's a pity." Barry responded. "That geek that grabbed her? Francis. Basically the nerd to end all nerds. Plus, he's got this thing for butterflies! And, well, all things nerdy, too. If he gets his sweaty mitts on something he likes, there's no getting it back. He collects stuff and keeps it in his big fantasy fortress. It's like geek paradise."

"So, where is it?" Mario asked. "I'm not going to let Tippi just get kidnapped like that."

"Whoa now. You want to know where Fort Francis is?" Barry asked in disbelief.

"Yes, can you please tell us?" Peach asked.

"Well, if you go ALL the way down ahead for miles and miles, you'll find it." Barry answered. "You're not thinking of infiltrating the nerd lair and rescuing her, are you?"

"Um, I'm pretty sure that's what all of us were going to do." Junior answered.

"Look, nobody likes having their butterfly kidnapped by a geek, but it's dangerous!" Barry warned.

"We're still going to go." Peach said. "And that's final."

"Still set on it, eh? What a tender moment, I think I got something in my eye here." Barry said. "Listen, let me give you all some travel tips. You listening? Good. All I got for you is three critical tips, so remember all of 'em!

"Here's your first tip! A bunch of no-class jerks are holed up in this castle up ahead. It ain't gonna be easy getting past 'em. But here's the juice: it's an old castle. You do your thing with that red X mark, and maybe something will happen for you.

"Now for my second tip. If you somehow pass those clowns in the castle, you'll see an ocean. Can't miss it. A scary sea monster lives there. The beast is huge. And cranky. But if you toast its red flipper thing, something good is bound to happen.

"And here's the last tip! Once you swim your way through that ocean, you'll see a humongous tree. There's a huge gorge on the other side. There's no jumping across it! Look for the red wind and do something with it. Then you can get across. Get all of that? Good. Now you can be careful now. Well, I'll go back to sitting in this bush."

Barry was about to go back into the bush, but Mario stopped the pixl by saying, "Now hang on a second."

"Hm?" Barry asked, turning around to face him. "Is there something else you need?"

"I was thinking that since you know a lot of information, you should come with us." Mario explained. "And since you're a pixl, what kind of special ability do you have?"

"Well, traveler, you see, I can form a temporary spiky shield that can damage opponents." Barry explained. "Hm… you know, I've been spending too much time in that bush. I need to stretch, to travel the lands!" 'I've always wanted to see Fort Francis for myself…' "So yes, I will join you all!"

And so, Barry became their newest companion, but it couldn't fill the void that Tippi getting kidnapped had opened. Surely, Mario, Peach, Junior, and Violet would be able to save her, right?

Anyway, now that everything was settled, the group headed on down to explore the rest of the Bitlands, and find the old castle that Barry had talked about.

First, they came across two blocks on a hill. While one of them just broke, the other gave them a single coin. They jumped over a small chasm and hit another block that gave them another singular coin. They then went onto a large hill that had several Koopas walking on it. Mario noticed that these Koopas didn't wear sunglasses, but nobody else seemed to pay any mind to it.

Then, Mario went on top of a pipe and hit a block, and from it came a ladder going upwards to a door. But what confused the group, was that even though the door was there, there was also a path ahead.

"Let's split up," Peach suggested. "That way, we can cover this area faster."

"Good idea," Mario said. "Two of us will go up to the door, and the other two will explore this area over here."

"How about Peach and I go up there, while you and Junior explore down here?" Violet suggested.

"Whatever works, I guess." Mario shrugged.

And so, Peach and Violet climbed up the ladder to the door, while Mario and Junior explored the area ahead.

With Peach and Violet, after they went through the door, they walked through the blocky plains ahead. The path mostly consisted of a couple hills with some enemies scattered about.

"Violet, can I ask you something?" Peach asked.

"Sure, what is it?" Violet asked back.

"Well…" Peach started, unsure of how to phrase it. "It's about Mario. Remember that party a couple days ago?"


"I feel like Mario's been acting really strange about it… A little while ago, he asked me out of nowhere about it, and he was also acting really weird…"

"What did he ask you?"

"He asked me why Luigi wasn't part of the party," Peach answered. "And I had to remind him that he and Luigi didn't really want a birthday party this year."

"That is unlike him, but I won't question his decision," Violet said. "But, it does seem really weird for him. Maybe he asked you about it cause he was feeling stressed about everything and was starting to forget some things."

"I guess." Peach said. What Violet had just said sounded like a reasonable explanation… but it still seemed that there was something more to the story…

The two continued along the path, and after going through a door and continuing along ANOTHER path, they came across a sign that read,

" neewteb ni llaf
sepip der eht"

After about a minute of thinking, the two deduced that it was a backwards message, and it actually said, "fall in between the red pipes", and there was a red arrow pointing left. So, the two decided to head back to where they came from and find the red pipes.

Meanwhile with Mario and Junior, they had happened to just jump over the two red pipes as they moved forward. Up ahead were strange multicolored block formations, each one vaguely representing something. To start, there was a white one, and then a yellow, a blue, and finally a pink one, though it looked smaller and deliberately more broken than the others.

There was a bit of silence between the two, because it was a little awkward with the two of them alone. After all, one was the son of a big ruler, and the other was an adult plumber that consistently had to defeat said ruler in order to rescue a woman he truly loved.

"So…" Mario said. "Do you think you'll find Bowser anytime soon?"

Junior paused for a moment. "Well, hopefully I'll find him soon." Junior said. "And… there's also something I found a while ago, and I was wondering if you knew anything about it." Out of his hammerspace, he pulled the page he got all the way back at the sewers, and handed it to Mario.

Mario only looked at the page for a couple seconds before confusion arose on his face. Nothing on the page made sense at all. "Sorry, but I don't understand any of this." Mario said. He handed the page back to Junior.

"Yeah, I don't either." Junior responded. "Well, it was worth a try."

About a minute later, Violet and Peach came back and explained that they had to jump down between the red pipes. And when the four of them did, they found themselves in a short underground area.

There were a few notable places in the underground area, such as a hidden pipe that lead to many question mark blocks containing coins. Near the end of the area, they went on a rising platform that led them to three different pipes. After some deliberation, the group decided to go into the third pipe, which lead them to another coin-filled area.

Then, they decided to go down the second pipe, and found themselves in the middle of a field. Though, they didn't walk too far before seeing a fortress and hearing a very loud voice.

"HALT!" The voice, which was a Koopa Striker, yelled. "Hey, what are you doing at Bowser's Cas- wait a minute! Junior? What are you doing with these chumps?"

"W-Well, I-" Junior started, before he was interrupted suddenly by two Hammer Bros jumping in front of him to protect him, while several Koopas, Hammer Bros, and Koopa Strikers jumped out to in preparation to attack Mario, Peach, and Violet.

"Now wait a sec-" Mario tried to say, before he was interrupted by a loud cry of, "ATTACK!" From one of the Koopa Strikers. And then, it was chaos.

The Hammer Bros immediately began throwing their seemingly infinite hammers at the trio, forcing them to run out of the way. At the same time, the Koopa Strikers began kicking shells at them, and the Koopas began tucking into their shells to shoot themselves at the trio.

Mario ducked down to avoid the hammers, and saw one of the Koopa Strikers kicking a shell toward him. Mario had a plan. Acting quickly, he kicked the shell back at the Koopa Striker, forcing it to fall down.

Peach quickly brought out her parasol to shield herself from the incoming hammers. With the parasol helping her, she ran up to one of the Hammer Bros smacked him with her parasol, knocking him to the ground.

Violet summoned a hammer and shield, made of purple ice, wielding the shield in her right hand and the hammer in her left. She swung her hammer sideways at an incoming Koopa shell, deflecting it, and used her shield to block the flying hammers from the Hammer Bros.

Soon enough, the three defeated the group of enemies, and they moved on. There was another castle, though it was a little smaller than the other one. There was a Bill Blaster along with two more Hammer Bros.

Violet tried to swing her hammer at one of the Hammer Bros, though it managed to throw a hammer at her first, knocking her own hammer out of her hands, shattering it. So, she used her shield to push the Hammer Bro off of the castle.

Mario saw ahead that there was a red X on the next castle, which was the biggest, and remembered Barry's words; blow up the castle with the red X on it. He tried to run toward other castle, but the other Hammer Bro jumped in front of him, preventing him from doing so.

Thankfully, Peach came to his rescue when she jumped on top of the Hammer Bro, stunning it for a moment. But what she didn't notice was the Bullet Bill being launched from the Bill Blaster at her from behind, though Violet helped her out when she used her shield to deflect the Bullet Bill back at the Bill Blaster.

Somehow, the Bullet Bill managed to go back into the Bill Blaster. Of course, that wasn't supposed to happen, and due to the pressure, the Bill Blaster itself exploded; the sudden loud noise of it causing Violet to accidentally drop her shield and shatter it.

Now that the path was clear, Mario ran to the next castle, right where the huge red X was. He used Boomer to blow up the castle, which caused a chain reaction. The entire castle exploded. The enemies that were on it flew to who knows where. All except for one.

The Koopa King himself, Bowser.

At the explosion, Bowser let out a scream. And then, when he hit the ground, he roared in rage. "Please tell me someone didn't just blow up my awesome lair…" While Junior was still being protected by the two Hammer Bros, Bowser noticed three figures in particular in front of him.

"Hey!" Bowser yelled, quickly standing up. "Mario! Violet! …And Princess Peach?" He shook his head. "Why do you ALWAYS have to do that? That's like the 100th time you've shown up at my castle and screwed everything up!"

Then, without warning, Bowser jumped into the air and then slammed back down to the ground, causing Peach to somehow be flung away from them. And, parts of the previous castle started to fall down, creating a wall that separated Peach from Mario, Violet, and Bowser.

"But now you've entered a fortress of PAIN, Mario and Violet!" Bowser said with a laugh, raising his arms in the air. "No more sequels! It's gonna end right here, right now, once and for all!"

At that, Mario and Violet knew that they were in for yet another fight. Bowser quickly jumped backward and roared fire out of his mouth for several seconds. Thankfully, Mario and Violet both managed to avoid it.

Violet used her power to summon several balls of ice. She quickly threw them at Bowser's mouth, forcing the spewing fire to stop, though it did melt the ice balls. Bowser then jumped in the air, intent on stomping on Mario, just as the plumber had done to him many times before. But to Bowser's dismay, Mario quickly rolled out of the way, and when Bowser finally landed, Mario was quick to punch him in the nose, forcing the Koopa King to stagger back a bit.

From behind him, Violet quickly ran toward him with a new ice sword and shield, though she was getting tired from all the weapons she had to make. When she was close enough, she jumped up, ready to strike Bowser with the sword. But unexpectedly, Bowser turned around and grabbed the dull end of the sword, and using the sword to his advantage, swung Violet of his head with it, causing her to go tumbling across the grass, shield still equipped.

Mario tried to retaliate by jumping on Bowser, though the Koopa King acted quicker than Mario and punched him, causing Mario to tumble to the ground near where Violet was. Bowser threw the purple sword to the side and was about to do another fire breath. Thankfully, Violet was able to stand up and make her shield bigger, blocking the flame. It quickly started to wear down as the ice melted, so they had to act fast.

Mario ran to the side, started to charge at Bowser, and then jumped. He managed to finally land a hit on Bowser's head, momentarily stunning the Koopa King and forcing to go on all fours. After a moment, he stood himself back up.

By now, Violet's shield had nearly melted all the way, but that didn't stop her from quickly making a new one. Meanwhile, in rage, Bowser charged at Mario, arms flailing. Doing the first thing that came to mind, Mario brought out Barry, and the pixl quickly surrounded Mario with a spiky shield for a few seconds as Bowser got close.

Bowser tried to tackle Mario, though the spiky shield prevented him from doing so, forcing him back and causing him to let out a cry of pain. The spiky shield then disappeared. A moment later, Violet threw her shield at Bowser like a boomerang. It knocked Bowser upside the head, forcing him to his back as Violet caught her shield.

But Bowser wasn't finished yet. While on his back, he tucked into his shell, and then began rapidly began spinning toward Mario. The plumber managed to jump over him, though the Koopa King quickly turned back around. Violet changed her shield into a hammer, and then ran toward Bowser. Since he was currently occupied with chasing Mario, it left Violet free to attack Bowser. Once she got close enough, with all of her might, she swung Bowser with the icy hammer as hard as she could. While the hammer shattered upon impact, Bowser was stunned and flipped over, and was forced to retreat out of his shell.

Now, Mario could finally stop running, and good thing, too, cause he was out of breath. At the same time, Peach, along with Junior and some of Bowser's minions, had cleared past parts of the broken castle at Peach and Junior's request.

"No!" Bowser yelled, having been defeated. "I hate Mario! I hate Violet! It's… It's not fair!"

"Mario! Violet!" Peach yelled, running to them, Junior following behind her. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah, we're fine." Mario answered.

"I'm alright… though I am exhausted." Violet added.

Bowser then stood up, also exhausted. "Ugh… I don't feel too good…" Though that all seemed to go away when he saw someone he hadn't seen in a long while. "Junior!" He said, opening his arms.

"Daddy!" Junior eagerly yelled. He ran up to Bowser and hugged him. After all this time, after all he had to go through, he finally was reunited with the person he missed most. And the person- no, kid he had to thank most for helping him get this far was Timmy Turner. "I missed you so much!" Tears started to form in his eyes.

"It's alright, Junior. We're finally reunited again." Bowser said, relieved that his son hadn't been put in any harm… right? He then set Junior down, and turned his attention to something else. "Ah, Princess Peach! My lovely wife!"

"Excuse me?" Mario questioned in shock, though he wasn't the only one.

"Your…WIFE?!" Peach questioned, also in shock. "Since when did I marry you?"

"What? Are you kidding me? How could you forget about our big day?" Bowser asked, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.

"That…sham was not a wedding!" Peach tried to explain. "What are you doing here, anyway, Bowser?" She asked.

"Yeah, it was almost like it was luck we found you here," Junior pointed out.

"Well how should I know? I was locked up in Count Bleck's stupid castle…" Bowser started. "When all of a sudden, BAM! Me and the minions wake up facedown in this field. Then we found this awesome castle, and I thought, why not make myself a lair?"

"Well, Bowser…" Peach started, unsure of how to put it.

"Look, even though I hate to say it, we need your help." Mario bluntly finished.

Bowser was nearly about to laugh because Mario of all people was about to ask him for help. But he decided to hold himself back. "Wait, what? Why?"

And so, Mario, Peach, and Violet explained Count Bleck's plan, while Junior added in some of the stuff he experienced about the Darkness.

"So Bleck got us married just to make a Chaos Heart so that he could destroy the world?" Bowser questioned, making sure that he got everything straight. "And there was something else called the Darkness, but that's apparently already been taken care of?"

"Yes, and Bleck creating the Void is why we need you to help us find all the Pure Hearts!" Violet explained.

Bowser turned around and crossed his arms. "No. I don't wanna." He pouted. "I'd think about it if it was for Peach and definitely do it for Junior, but there's no way I'm helping you or Mario!"

"We don't have time for you to be a big baby about this!" Peach said. "Come on, Bowser… Please?"

"But… But I'm Bowser!" The Koopa King resisted. "I'm grade-A, 100% prime-cut final boss! I'm going to take over the world any day now! No way am I helping Mario or Violet! They're always trashing my awesome plans!"

"Please, daddy?" Junior asked, almost as if he was pleading with him. "For me?"

"…" Bowser didn't know what to say. He didn't want his son to be upset with him so soon after they were reunited, but he also wanted nothing to do with Mario and Violet. He was at a stalemate.

Then, Mario had an idea. "Alright, if you want the world to end, then so be it. But you must know that once it ends, there won't be anything for you to rule, right?"

Bowser quickly turned back around. "What was that you just said?"

"You heard me." Mario smirked. He knew he had Bowser cornered.

Violet and Peach knew what Mario was doing, so Violet decided to add something of her own. "And what will happen to your poor minions who were caught by Count Bleck?" She asked. "They've been brainwashed! They now do his evil bidding, and not yours."

"Now your minions will have to toil under a different cruel and merciless master…" Peach added.

"…But… But… Why, you…" Bowser stuttered. He hated when his enemies were right, but in this case… the enemy of his enemy had to be… his friend. Blargh. Not able to hold it in any longer, he finally let out a roar. "Fine!" I'll join your stupid quest. You happy?"

"Oh, thank you, Bowser!" Peach said. "You're so sweet!"

"No! I'm not sweet!" Bowser practically yelled. "And I'm not helping Mario and Violet just to save a bunch of worlds. I'm only doing it for Junior and to be ruler of the world someday, so don't get all cuddly with me, Mario and Violet!"

"Wasn't planning on it." Mario plainly said.

"LORD BOWSER!" Suddenly, several of Bowser's troops ran up to him, consisting of a Koopa Striker, two Hammer Bros, a Koopa Troopa, and a Goomba.

"Your crabbiness? Are you leaving us?" The Koopa Striker asked.

"What?" Bowser asked, turning around to face them. "Oh, yeah… Minions! Hold down the fort until I return."

"Your lair is safe with us, sir!" The Koopa Striker said. "Oh, sir, it seems that Count Bleck has brainwashed some of your loyal henchpeople. They're probably going to be forced to attack you, so feel free to dole out punishment!"

"Of course, we'd love to come along and defend you, but…" A Hammer Bro added. "You know, we'd just, uh, get in the way, Your Heinousness…"

"Clobber that count for us!" The Koopa said.

"Yeah! Anyone who wears a cape and a monocle is just begging for a beating!" Bowser agreed.

"Long live King Bowser!" The Koopa Striker said.

"We'll miss you, Your Surliness!" All five of the minions said, though they also whispered, "…Party!" Which Bowser didn't hear.

"Oh, you guys…" Bowser said. He turned back around. "Fine…c'mon. Let's get your stupid Precious Heart, or whatever you call it. I said move it!"

And so, even though Tippi was gone and captured by that freaky chameleon, the team had gotten a new addition to their party, Bowser. The group of 5 set forth on their quest to get the next Pure Heart.

Steven, Peridot, and Amethyst had brought the drill head back to the barn. As promised, Peridot had to go back to being tied up at the fence, while Steven sat next to her.

"Oh, it's lovely!" Pearl cheered, examining the drill head. "To think, we'd be using the same technology that started all of this to fix it! This drill is pure irony!"

"Actually, it's mostly carbonite." Peridot corrected from where she was sitting.

"Would that make it… carbony?" Steven joked as he put a screw into a tin can.

Peridot started to grumble until she saw Amethyst walking by, carrying some supplies. "Oh, Amethyst!" Peridot said. Though Amethyst wasn't in a good mood, she still turned around to see what Peridot had to say.

"Check out this," Peridot started, picking up a hammer. "Hmm… rythmatic pulveriser!" She fell to the ground, laughing. "That's funny I'm so funny!"

"…Whatever, dude." Amethyst simply said before walking off.

Peridot sat up. "That was the incorrect response." She noted before turning to Steven. "Hey, Amethyst isn't laughing when I do these things! Why isn't she laughing?"

"Peridot, you really hurt her feelings." Steven told her.

"…What?" Peridot asked, clearly confused.

"You were pretty mean to her at the kindergarten."

"Mean? No way! I was being 'cool.' Amethyst loved it! She's probably telling the Pearl how much fun she had now." Contrary to what Peridot said, Amethyst was actually just giving Pearl a bottle of something out of her supplies.

Because Peridot was oblivious to Amethyst's true feelings, she tried to get the purple gem's attention by waving to her and whispering her name. At that, Amethyst quickly walked out of Peridot's sight.

"She won't even look at me." Peridot said. She placed her hand on her forehead. "It's making me feel… smaller."

"You feel bad! That's how you made her feel!" Steven explained.

Peridot scoffed before standing up. "Who cares about what she feels? Who cares about any of you?" She announced as loudly as she could. In frustration, she kicked some of the screws on the grass before starting to rant. "You're all just rocks, ruddy muddy clumps beneath my gravity connecters!" In her frustration, she accidentally fell down.

Pearl sighed in exasperation. "Another one of her temper tantrums. I'm surprised you two made it back from the kindergarten without driving each other crazy.

A little later, Steven was holding Peridot's leash as the green gem was adjusting some of the wires on the drill, though she looked very annoyed. This was further proven when Amethyst walked by, carrying a fridge, causing Peridot to growl further in annoyance.

"How's everything going up there?" Steven asked.

"Fine, nothing's wrong, everything's fine." Peridot answered. Though after she plugged a wire in and pressing a button on a panel, she was proven to be wrong as the drill suddenly started rumbling. "No no no no stop!" Peridot quickly cried out, pressing many random buttons to try and stop the drill.

"Peridot?" Steven asked in concern, though Peridot was quickly thrown off of the drill by it starting to activate. She coughed a couple times before sitting up.

"The panel!" Peridot said, pointing at said panel on the drill. With a look of determination, Steven ran up to the spinning drill and jumped onto it, clinging onto its side despite it turning rapidly. "Wait!" Peridot yelled, having gotten up and was running over to help, even though the drill had already spun to another part of the barn. But thanks to her leash getting caught on a rock and tripping her up, Peridot was temporarily unable to do nothing while the drill spun wildly around the area, Steven just barely being able to hang onto the side.

"It's okay, I got iiiiiit!" Steven barely yelled over the drill's loud noise.

Due to the commotion, Amethyst decided to see what was going on, stepping out from behind the barn. "What the heck is- whoa!" She said, upon seeing the drill rapidly coming closer to her.

"Amethyst!" Peridot cried out. Even though her leash was holding her back, she tried to run forward, and eventually, the leash snapped in half, freeing her from the rock and allowing her to sprint toward Amethyst, pushing her out of the way of the drill.

On the drill itself, Steven finally managed to get to the control panel after a floppy landing, and did the first thing he could think of to try and stop it, which was to rip out the control panel altogether. While that did stop the drill, it also undid all of Peridot's previous progress on it.

"It's okay, everything's okay!" Steven said, dazed as he tried to climb out of the drill. "It was a drill!" He said, before quietly laughing at his own joke. Though after a moment, he looked around and saw what a mess the drill had made to some of the grass and dirt, so he cringed a little.

Peridot coughed for a couple seconds due to the smoke from the dirt. Once she regained her bearings, she found that she accidently was lying on top of Amethyst, who was lying on her back.

"Uh, Peridot?" Amethyst asked, the situation getting awkward.

"GAH!" Peridot yelled, quickly getting up and off of Amethyst. "It was an accident, I swear!"

"Hey, don't worry about it!" Steven said, walking up to the two gems and putting his hand on Peridot's shoulder for a moment. "We know you didn't mean to start the drill."

"Uh, yeah. That was an accident too." Peridot said.

"We leave for one second and everything goes off the rails!" Pearl said overdramatically. A bit of time had passed, and Pearl was standing next to the chalkboard, while Garnet was sitting on a small haystack.

"I blame the cows." Garnet plainly said.

"No, it's fine." Pearl responded. "We'll rebuild it stronger, better, and we'll add seatbelts!"

Meanwhile a bit away from the barn with Steven and Amethyst, the purple gem pulled out a unicycle that was stuck halfway into the ground while Steven was trying to flatten out some of the dirt with a shovel.

"Hey, are you alright?" Steven asked Amethyst. "That was a close one. Good thing Peridot was there to save you." He pointed out. At the mention of the green gem's name, Amethyst's expression flattened, and she tossed the unicycle aside.

"Yes, it is a good thing." Peridot said, walking up to them. Amethyst crossed her arms and looked away from Peridot. "Listen, I, um…"

"Just spit it out." Amethyst said crossly.

Peridot groaned out loud as she brought out her tape recorder. "Why are you Earth ones so difficult!" She yelled as she pushed the 'play' button on the tape recorder, allowing it to play a previous recording.

"Log Date, 7 11 2," The recording began. "This entire planet is backwards. There hasn't been one instance of correct behavior by any one of these 'Crystal Gems.' I have concluded that they are all defective." Amethyst was just reminded of what Peridot said to her at the Kindergarten. "But I am no better." Amethyst's look softened a little.

"I failed my mission and now I am working with the enemy. And I can't even get that right. I have apparently 'hurt' Amethyst's 'feelings', which was not my intent. If I've damaged my standing with the best gem here, then I've made a serious mistake. I'm still learning. I hope you understand. I want to understand. I'm sorry. Peridot, Facet 5, End Log." Peridot stopped the recording.

"As you can see…" Peridot started, though she got interrupted by Steven.

"Oh Peridot…" Steven said, happy that she was able to apologize, though she looked away from him for a moment.

"Hey, Peridot," Amethyst said, causing Peridot to look at her. "Thanks." She paused. "But you're still a nerd." She walked away.

"I'll be sure to add that to my notes." Peridot responded.

"How do you feel?" Steven asked.

"…Big." Peridot answered after thinking for a moment.

Chapter Text

With Bowser in the party, the five heroes made a most unlikely quintuplet.

Peach attempted to explain the quest to Bowser, but it made him grunt in confusion.

As Mario walked ahead, he spotted something that made him briefly stop and stare…

" What is it, Mario?" Peach asked as she turned to see the blue expanse ahead.

The great, glittering waves of the Tile Pool stretched as far as she could see.

Fort Francis was somewhere across the water…

Before the group had headed into the Tile Pool, Peach had helped Bowser learn the essential flipping power, even if he didn't understand it at all. To the group's luck, the flipping power also helped them to not run out of air underwater, which was a good thing considering that there was a lot of it.

Shorty after jumping into the large pool, the group of five was met with a few enemies, but it wasn't anything special. Just a few Cheep Cheeps and Bloopers. But even though they couldn't jump on any of the enemies, Bowser's and Junior's fire breath helped cleared them out, despite the fact that they were underwater.

Along the way, they collected a few things such as a Mushroom that instantly healed them, and several coins. In another block, there was a Happy Flower that netted them additional coins. Also, thanks to the flipping power, there was a hidden path that got them even more coins.

Up ahead, after they went through a small passage, the group found several small pillars that looked like they could be ground pounded on if they had the right pixl. But for now, they didn't, so they decided to move on.

They went through a pipe, getting them to another area. Though, what was weird about that new area, was that every so often, a giant Blooper tentacle would pop up from seemingly nowhere and try to attack them, but Bowser would deter them back down with his Fire Breath.

Before long, they found an upper area that led out of the water, and swam up to it. And before them was a pipe that they promptly entered. On the other side was a narrow passageway that contained a few spiky Goombas, and then a dip back down into the water. They went through another narrow passageway, this one filled with water, and also filled with a few enemies.

They soon went through a door, but there was another small pillar in the next room like before, and suddenly, the door locked. There were several enemies in the room, and it seemed that the only way to unlock the door was to defeat all of them. And when they did, the door wasn't unlocked, but rather, a chest rose up from the ground.

And when they opened the chest, out came another Pixl. This one, named Thudley, was a blue trapezoid with his eyes above his head. "HEY!" Thudley yelled. "In case you ain't heard, I throw a lot of girth around these parts. And I'm gonna check you out to make sure you got the weight to hang with me."

Since Bowser was closest to the chest, Thudley decided to check him out. "All right. Let's start by checking that face of yours. Dude has shaggy eyebrows! That's not even kinda girthy! You get 50 girth points." Bowser raised an eyebrow at that. "All right, I gotta check the girthiness of those clothes of yours! What's more girthy than a giant spiky shell? That's worth 100 girth points! Girth check on the body comin' up. That's where the real heavy comes from. Look at this guy! Look him up in the dictionary, and he's the definition of girth! A superheavyweight right here! Bam… 10,000 girth points! The sheer girthitude on display here is blowing my mind! There's no getting around it! You got heavy like I've never seen before! Any fool that gets in your way and you just HAVE to girth him up! Love it! Smash and squish those lightweights! You're goin' places with girth like that, and I wanna come along for the ride."

And just like that, Thudley joined them. Though, before they all went back to the place with the many small pillars, they decided to keep pressing forward, and they were glad they did, because up ahead was a picture of what looked like a code on which pillars to ground pound, and it was:

Up, down, down, up, down, up.

Then, the group finally went back to the area with the six small pillars and inputted the correct code. When they did, another door appeared, which they promptly went through. In the next underwater room were some new enemies called Bittacudas, though the enemies didn't stay for long, as a new, bigger enemy arrived.

"BLUH-BLOOP! (WHAT'S GOING ON?)" A booming voice yelled. To the group's surprise, several giant blooper tentacles began rising from the depths of the water; several of them were blue, though one of them was red. And then, a giant blooper revealed itself, towering over all of them. "Bloobloobloobloop! (Hey, land freaks! How'd you like a tentacle sandwich?)" Two yellow tentacles also rose up, blocking them in.

Thankfully, the group quickly found out that if Bowser or Junior were to use their fire breath on the red tentacle, it would retract and the giant blooper would get stunned. After this repeated several times, the blooper, having finally been defeated, went back in to the depths of the water.

Shorty after, the group found a pipe that took them back to land. And so, after that short water adventure, the journey continued…

Luigi couldn't believe he was in this situation.

He hadn't even done anything wrong… right? He had been doing everything the best he could, and yet, he somehow ended up… here.

After getting captured by several of Count Bleck's brainwashed minions, he had been taken to a black, empty room. Black just like the rest of the castle. He didn't even know what happened to anyone else. Where was Peach? Violet? Even Bowser would make some good company right now.

But right now, he was alone. And he hated it. He already lost track of time. How long had he been here? Minutes? Hours? He didn't know. Luigi felt like the walls were closing in around him. The room was small enough already. He was hungry. And thirsty. He would give anything for a meal right now.

Escape was out of the question. There were multiple Koopatrol guards right on the other side of the door, and it was locked. Luigi sat against the wall, legs up against his chest, arms crossed on top of his legs, and his face buried in his arms.

Just how much longer would he be in here? His stomach pangs got worse by the minute. His throat got drier the more he breathed and longed for anything to eat. And yet, he also felt extremely tired. Nothing he could do would get him to stay awake. Not like he wanted to anyway.

He blinked multiple times. It was hard to tell if his eyes were open or closed, considering the room was pitch black and empty. Heh. Fit with how he felt right now. Empty.

Thoughts tended to linger a lot when one was bored out of their mind. It tended to happen a lot, such as when you're sitting in a class where you have no idea what what's going. The mind goes to memories that it remembers or events you would like to happen and plays those instead.

And that's what was happening now. Luigi wanted to think about the good times. Anything but this…


It was just a couple days ago when everything was normal. Just fine. Like it should be. Living a normal life in the Mushroom Kingdom, at least as normal as it could be. Bowser kidnapping Peach all the time was troublesome, though sometimes he thought… would it be all that bad if Bowser and Peach got together?

Bowser honestly wasn't too much of a bad guy when there wasn't a kidnapping going on. Like the kart races, the golf, and other sports, they all had a good time doing them. Bowser was just a little… passionate about what he did.


He remembered when he and Violet first got together. That was… nice. All the fun times they had. Why couldn't that continue? Oh right. Cause of this stupid Count Bleck stuff. Stupid Count Bleck and his stupid forced wedding between Peach and Bowser. Stupid Goombas that betrayed him. Everything felt stupid.

How'd this even begin? He had been woken up that day by Mario, rushed to Bowser's Castle, and then… Peach kidnapped by Bleck. Mario's unknown fate. The wedding.


The day before was mostly a blast, aside from the beginning. He'd mostly forgotten the contents of that grocery list that day. It just… felt weird… in a way he couldn't describe.

Most of that day felt like a blur. Why, though? He thought he remembered the events pretty well.


He went to the local grocery; Mario told him that there was a party for some… what was it? He didn't remember. The details didn't matter anyway. The party afterward was fun. Mario was reunited with some of his old friends, it was just… wait a minute.

Something stuck out, like an imaginary seed planted in his mind. A seed that grew by the second, refusing to die. Anything seemed to strengthen it. It was… just a simple word. In nearly any other context, it's meaning would bring joy to those who heard it. It was…





Luigi opened his eyes. Was he dreaming? It sure felt like it. Though, the dream looked… strange.

The setting was a vast landscape of hills, like the ones in the Mushroom Kingdom. And that was just it. Hills. The sky was a bright white, though it didn't blind Luigi's eyes. Seeing nothing else to do, he started walking.

And walking.

And walking some more…

How long would these hills go on? He looked up. The sky was black, though constellations like the Big Dipper could be seen. And what was that other one? It looked like… a triangle? What? Why did it seem so… familiar?

"That's because I should be, Mr. L!" A sudden voice said, catching Luigi off guard. He paused.

"W-Where are you?" Luigi demanded. "Show yourself!" The earlier voice had seemed to come from all around him, like an echo.

There was a rumble. Luigi looked at the sky again, now in fear. The triangle constellation from before now took on a new shape. There was a singular eye on it, along with a top hat and bow tie, and two arms and legs. They soon… became an actual being. And it was giant.

The living triangle was yellow, its limbs and what it was wearing was black… and that eye… Luigi shuddered. This was just a dream. He had to remind himself of that. Nothing here can hurt him. It's all fake. Not real.

The mysterious living triangle took up nearly the entire sky. And then, it shrunk, down to the size of his head, and floated all the way down to him.

"Well hey there!" The triangle said, sounding a bit cheerful. "So, I've heard about how-"

"Now just hold on a damn second!" Luigi interrupted. "Who are you? Were you just reading my thoughts? And why are yo-"

"Geez, geez, relax, Mr. L!" The triangle cut him off. "Calm down, have a drink!" A cup of coffee suddenly appeared in front of Luigi. The plumber hesitantly took the cup, but didn't drink any of it. Drinking something in a dream wouldn't quench his thirst.

"First of all, about the name question, I've already been asked this, like, about a million times, but my name is Bill Cipher." The triangle, Bill said. "Secondly, yes, I was reading your mind. After all, this is the mindscape!"

"Mindscape?" Luigi asked, confused.

"Yeah that's the place where you dream, and it's the only way I can speak with you!" Bill answered.


"I'd rather not get into all of those messy details right now." Bill said. "Instead, let's focus on you and your brother Jumpman. Boy, you two are more alike than I remember."

Luigi froze. "What? Mario? He's still alive?" In his shock, he dropped his coffee, but that hardly mattered anyway.

" Yeah, of course Jumpman's still alive! After all, someone has to collect all those Pure Hearts!"


"Eh, I'm sure all of those details would bore you to death, so I won't explain them. Anyways I'm getting off-topic." Bill then laughed, though a bit creepily. "Mr. L, I'm sure you want some answers, right?"

"Answers?" Luigi asked. "For what?"

"Oh come on, don't act like I can't read your mind, Mr. L." Bill said. "I know you've been having loads of questions about what happened a couple days ago, and I would be, too, especially if my own brother betrayed me."

"Wait, what?" Luigi asked, taken aback. "I just learned that Mario's still alive and now you're trying to tell me that he betrayed me? Excuse me?"

" Believe it or not, I know all the answers to everything you could ever want, Mr. L. Though, I would like to have something in return."

Though he was unsure, Luigi decided to test the waters. "Like what?"

"Oh, you know." Bill started. "Just a few… projects I need to catch up on. I'll let you know the specifics later. So, do we have a deal?" He extended out his hand, and a blue flame lit up on it.

Luigi did have to admit that he was jumping to this a bit… quickly. This was a totally new being that was talking him that said he would give him his 'answers'… But it didn't seem to be hostile… Luigi's thoughts conflicted with each other, temporarily forgetting about the apparent fact that Bill could read his mind.

But, Bill had made the outrageous claim that Mario betrayed him. Just where had that come from? Luigi searched his thoughts for anything that could resemble Mario 'betraying' him. So far, nothing.

That was so far. The imaginary seed that had been growing in his mind stuck out again. Birthday. Wait. What was that party supposed to have been about again? Some statue or something?

It made too much sense not to be a coincidence. That party wasn't about any statue at all. It was for his birthday. Their birthday. But… why would Mario want to sabotage his own celebration? The more he thought about it, the less it made sense.

Bill claimed to have all the answers. Should he really trust him? …Yes. …Yes he should. "Alright." Luigi finally said. He arm extended out to meet Bill's. "I'll help you with whatever you need if you tell me what happened at that party."

Their hands met. Surprisingly to Luigi, the flame on Bill's hand didn't seem to hurt at all. He shrugged it off. "Alright Bill, now you have to show me what happened." Their hands parted.

"Alright, alright, give me a second, Mr. L. It's not like forgot within two seconds." Bill said.

And then, the entire landscape around them seemed to change. No longer was it the endless hills. Instead, it was the setting of Peach's Castle. At least, what could be seen of it.

Almost all the lights were out, and the people in the castle looked like they were hurriedly trying to get ready for something. Luigi frowned. Just what was this? He was about to turn and ask Bill, but the triangle seemed to be gone.

He heard… something. He tried to walk closer to it, but it only ended up getting fainter. He walked in a different direction. Now it was getting louder. Luigi had to be careful of where he walked, lest he run into a wall due to it being so dark. Why did it have to be so dark, anyway?

Soon, he came to a door, the source of the whispering. He opened it. He was still in a 'dream', right? So nobody should notice him. And they didn't.

Peach, along with various Toads and others were all in the room. Something felt… off about this. But what? Like he shouldn't be here? But this is what happened at the party, so he had to stay.

"Are you absolutely sure about this?" One of the Toads asked Peach. It was Toadsworth. "I don't think that this is what Mario or Luigi wants…"

"Mario told me everything." Peach said. "He said that Luigi didn't want his birthday celebrated this year, and he said that Luigi said Mario deserved all the credit. In my opinion, that's a really nice thing to do."

"Are you sure?" Toadsworth asked. "That doesn't sound like anything they'd do."

"Trust me." Peach said. "It's what they want."

If that conversation had actually been happening at that moment, Luigi would've burst in there and try to set everything straight. He never agreed to anything like that at all… Now that he noticed it, Violet was also a part of the people in this room.

Was Violet in on all this? What was exactly going on? How did it all get to this point? As if his question was being answered, he was now in a different place. His house. More specifically, his and Mario's.

He went inside. Only Mario was sleeping. Wait a minute… wasn't this the morning that- oh no… Luigi didn't want to believe it. This was the same morning that he went grocery shopping for that stupid list.

So many alarm bells went off in Luigi's head, and ironically, Mario's alarm also woke up him just then. Mario got dressed, but Luigi didn't pay attention to any of that. So many implications of everything that has happened rose up in his mind.

Had… had Mario orchestrated everything behind this? It would explain a lot. How he managed to convince Peach, which was probably why when they went to the castle together there was no sign of any birthday at all.

After Mario took care of the rest of his duties, he went outside, and Luigi followed him. Was Mario just going to celebrate his own birthday first? Just to be a selfish asshole?

Luigi took a deep breath. He shouldn't jump to any conclusions too soon. No. There had to be an explanation to this. Any at all. But the more he looked at this memory of Mario, the more his blood boiled. He decided to stalk off to the castle and 'wait' for Mario there.

While he tried to ignore it, Luigi couldn't help but notice that Mario seemed… frantic. He looked around at every house as if something was wrong. Luigi shrugged it off. For all he knew, Mario was just faking it. Adding to the façade.

Luigi waited in the castle. It was now light in there, filled with decorations for Mario's birthday. The word birthday seemed like poison to his tongue now. Luigi would do anything to just rip down all these decorations. After a few more minutes, Mario finally came in and started having a conversation with Peach that Luigi couldn't care less about.

Luigi walked out of the castle. He knew what was going to happen afterward. After all, he experienced it. And to think, it had all happened a few days ago.

Tears welled up in the taller plumber's eyes. Why… why would anyone, much less the people he cared about… do this to him? To lie and betray him… Mario, Violet, Peach, Toadsworth…

One tear fell. And then another. Luigi started running. He had to get away. Anywhere besides that stupid castle. More tears.

He ran for who knows how long. He eventually got to the woods. His heart race increased. He had to sit down. Hands on his face, knees bent, Luigi sat against a tree and cried. The truth was too much to bear.

He didn't even consider any inconsistencies he found.

"Well, well, well." Bill finally returned, and floated next to Luigi. "Looks like Mr. L finally figured it all out."

At that, Luigi only cried more, being reminded once again of the atrocities that his 'friends' made. No. They weren't his friends. They were dead to him. And frankly… it wouldn't matter too much to him if they all just went and-

"So, now to uphold your end of the deal." Bill said, interrupting Luigi's thought process. "So, you know who Count is, right?"

Luigi sat up. "You mean… the one that wants to destroy everything?" Even if he already forbade himself from ever having contact with Mario or the others again, Count Bleck still needed to be stopped as soon as possible.

"No no no, you misunderstand. Count doesn't want to 'destroy' everything, he just wants to make a better world! One that's much better than this one!" Bill explained. "Doesn't that sound great?"

Luigi took this into consideration. A better world… anything sounded better than what he had to experience. "Is this… one of your… projects?"

" Oh yeah, Mr. L. Me and Count had… similar goals, so we decided to collaborate. Once this is all said and done, we'll get started on my other project. It's a lot more personal."

Luigi was now convinced. Count Bleck must've also had something horrible happen to him in order for him to go to such lengths. But what? He'd have to ask him later. Someone must've betrayed him also.

Luigi stood up. He now knew who to side with. That Goomba from earlier was right all along. Going along with Count Bleck was the best decision he had made in his life. He was with Bill and Bleck now.

Not that asshole Mario, or any of his friends.

He didn't want to think about that anymore. Only the future mattered now.

"So, what do I have to do?" Luigi asked.

"Well, Mr. L, with my help, you'll become the best minion imaginable!" Bill said. "As long as you let me take over your body as I please, then it'll be a cinch!"

"Alright, if that's what I have to do." Luigi said. He paused. "Do I have to make another deal?"

"No, this was all part of the same deal." Bill answered.

"Okay." Luigi responded. He pondered on something for a moment. "The first thing I'm gonna do… Is change my name. I'm not Luigi anymore. I'm… Mr. L."

" That's the spirit! Now, we're going to have a long road ahead of us, so do your best!"

Luigi-no, Mr. L nodded.


Mr. L woke up. His eyes were not the normal color. They were yellow. He stood up.

Nastasia walked into the black room. "Well, Luigi, are you finally ready to be loyal to Count Bleck, or will I have to brainwash you?"

Mr. L looked at her. "Yes, I am ready. And please don't call me Luigi. I'd prefer to go by Mr. L, please."

Chapter Text

Somehow, the heroes had beached the Big Blooper and crossed the Tile Pool.

But before they could dry, they saw the imposing silhouette of Fort Francis.

" It sure is getting dark," Peach said in a quiet voice.

But when they looked up, they realized that they were in the shadow of a huge tree.

Mario, knowing in his gut this must be the way, set out toward the great tree…

The large tree, otherwise known as the Dotwood Tree, was perhaps the biggest tree the 5 had ever seen in their lives. And there was no way around it. They had to climb it.

The climb up the tree started out relatively simple. Just jumping up platform after platform with the occasional enemy, question block, or required pixl use. Though the door at the top was encased by branches, it was easily freed by Bowser when he used his fire breath.

And yet when they went through the door and ended up inside the tree, it turned out that they weren't at the top at all. They were only halfway. They went up a moving platform and into a pipe that led them to the top, only that there was no way to exit, and a small, light blue switch.

After the switch was pressed, it turned pink and seemed to do nothing else. Since there was nothing else to do, the group went back down the pipe and to their surprise a couple of pink platforms had appeared. It seemed that the switch controlled whether the blue or pink platforms would appear.

Using that to their advantage, the group traversed up the tree, solving many puzzles involving the blue and pink switches. And after several minutes, they came across a switch that was different from the rest, the main reason was because it was it dark blue. Mario pressed it, and then above them, the door materialized.

They went back down to the yellow pipe to go upward, and then went through the door. They were all back outside the tree, on a platform. They were finally near the top.

"Ah ha ha. Finally, you arrive!" A voice. Mario and Violet recognized it. Dimentio. The jester floated up, several feet away from them. "You five don't wear tardiness well."

"Hey, who's this clown?" Bowser questioned.

Nobody had time to give him an answer. Dimentio spoke again, referring to Mario. "At last, the first hero… I know you from the festival of hair that dances upon your lip!" He then referred to Peach. "And the second… your look makes you out to be someone less dangerous than you are." Then Violet. "The third hero… one whose ice powers seem far more extraordinary than normal." Then Bowser. "And the fourth… whose heart longs for the princess, though that was already obvious."

And then, Dimentio paused. "And the last… the son of the koopa king… though… I wonder if you could even be considered a hero, considering-"

"Hey!" Bowser said, cutting off Dimentio. "You never answered my question!"

"Ah, yes. How rude of me." Dimentio responded. "I am a humble servant of Count Bleck…" He spun around once. "Master of dimensions… Pleaser of crowds… I am…Dimentio! It is truly enchanting to finally meet my hapless victims. I have prepared a special morsel of a treat for you!"

Dimentio waved his finger, and in seconds, the world around them transformed into a moderately sized green room. The 5 heroes all looked around, seemingly finding no way out,

"How about some…MAGIC!" Dimentio said. "And…voila. You are now in Dimension D, a dimension of my own creation. In this mind-bending realm, my attacks are 256 times more potent!"

The 5 were all now horrified, each to a different degree, but their faces hardly showed it. And Dimentio continued. "I am now far more powerful! I could obliterate you with a raise of an eyebrow. Now we must duel, like multiple gleaming banjos on a moonlit stoop!"

And before anyone could say anything else, it began.

Dimentio swooped down and then back above them, taunting them. They were out of his reach. "Can you pierce this…illusion?" Dimentio asked. The jester disappeared for a moment, and then reappeared… only there was two of him.

The two Dimentios waved their finger, and forth came multiple blasts of purple and yellow magic, which the group scrambled to avoid.

Mario and Violet ducked and rolled to avoid the several that had come their way. Violet got up first, and summoned a big purple shield to protect her and Mario from the next several magic blasts.

"Thanks." Mario said as he got up. One of the two Dimentios was close to him, and wasn't paying attention. Taking his chance, Mario charged at it, hoping was the real Dimentio. But as Mario got closer, the Dimentio took notice of him and fired a magic blast at him. Mario dodged by rolling under it, and then getting back into a run. Once he was close enough, Mario leapt into the air to jump on the Dimentio…

…Only to land on nothing as the fake disappeared, causing Mario to clumsily land and fall onto the floor. The actual Dimentio then laughed. "See how real my illusions look?"

Meanwhile, Peach and Junior had run a different way. They nearly ran into one of the walls and then turned around to face Dimentio. Thankfully, Mario had taken care of the fake, but they were sure that Dimentio would summon another one soon.

They needed to stop Dimentio before he could do that. Peach ran forward, parasol in hand, ready to attack Dimentio. 10 feet. 5 feet. 1 foot. She leapt and struck… only Dimentio moved away right before she hit. She growled, and ran after Dimentio again. This time, when she swung, she hit her target.

Dimentio was knocked back by how much force was surprisingly put into that hit. Though, it didn't really look like it affected him much. Instead, he summoned two additional clones of himself, and swiftly, all of them moved around the large green room so fast nobody could tell which one was real or not.

Junior didn't know what do. He didn't have a lot of fighting experience, and what he did manage to accomplish was mostly sloppy. Though, when one of the three Dimentios floated up to him, he knew he had to fight.

Junior tucked into his shell when the Dimentio blasted the magic at him. Thankfully, his shell managed to deflect it, sending it back at the Dimentio. The Dimentio dodged it, letting it hit the ceiling. Then, something unexpected happened. The three Dimentios waved their fingers, and then, a semi-translucent white box appeared around Junior. He didn't notice at first, but when he tucked out of his shell, he sure did. And he started to panic.

Bowser had tucked into his shell for a few minutes to avoid the inevitable barrage of attacks that would come his way. He got out of his shell just in time, as one of the white boxes was about to encase itself around Bowser, he moved out of the way. He set his sights on the Dimentio nearest to him. He ran forward, jumped, and swiped at it. It was a fake. Bowser landed on the ground.

Mario jumped to avoid one of the white boxes that tried to close around him. He landed on it as it formed. Suddenly, he stopped. His adrenaline that had carried him throughout the battle so far started to leave him. How long had it been since he last slept? The meal he had after returning to Flipside had managed to refuel him a bit, but he was starting to regret not even napping for around a half hour at minimum.

Mario tried to jump again in case another box tried to encase him. But it was too late. His head hit against the top of the box he was already encased in, and he fell, holding his hat. He looked up.

Violet had turned her icy shield into a sword, and jumped onto the box Mario was currently trapped in. One of the Dimentios wasn't too far away from her. She took a small running start and jumped into the air, sword ready. She was close. The Dimentio was right in front of her, turned around. She swung.

It was a fake. Violet fell to the ground, exhausted. By the time she managed to get up, one of the boxes already formed around her. She tried to break open the box with her sword, thinking it might work like glass without thinking about the consequences. It didn't work. She tried several more times to no avail. She took deep breaths.

It seemed like everyone was getting fatigued. Except Bowser. He felt like he had near infinite energy. Why? Who knows? Maybe it was because of that comment Dimentio made about Junior… he'd have to ask his son about that later.

Bowser leapt onto another box, narrowly avoiding one that tried to encase him. He looked down, and saw Peach trapped in the box underneath him. He got angrier. There was only one Dimentio left, and he was halfway across the room.

The Koopa King began jumping from box to box, getting closer to Dimentio. Dimentio saw this and fired a blast of magic at Bowser. He ducked. Dimentio saw his chance. A box started to close around Bowser. But surprisingly, Bowser jumped, the box forming below him.

Bowser tucked into his shell and spun in place for a moment. And without warning, he launched himself at Dimentio at full speed. The jester had no time to react, as only a second passed before Bowser collided with him.

Time slowed. Bowser emerged from his shell as Dimentio tried to maintain his composure. And then, without a beat, Bowser raised his arm, and still in the air, punched Dimentio in the face, sending him falling to the ground.

Time resumed. The boxes disappeared. Bowser fell to his belly. The others got up and walked over to Bowser, who had just gotten up. Dimentio was finally defeated, lying on the floor.

"Your blows are like miniature jackhammers wielded by tiny, angry road workers!" Dimentio commented. "How is this possible? This dimensions makes me 256 times more powerful…"

Mario had a realization. "I think you might've miscalculated and made us more powerful also, thereby cancelling everything out." He explained.

"What? Is that what you think?" Dimentio questioned. He laughed, though so quietly no one else could hear him. He then stood back up and resumed floating in the air, as if he was never injured. "Of course! This was simply an amusement that played out exactly as I planned! Were you amused? That was just an hors d'oeurve! The next time we meet, you will feast on a deadly eight-course meal!"

With a wave of his finger, Dimentio sent everyone back to where they had been at, near the top of the tree. "Ciao for now, my foes!" Dimentio said. He then disappeared.

A couple of thoughts lingered through the group's heads as they moved onward, finding the red wind that would carry them to their next destination. The fight with Dimentio had seemed a bit… easy. But they pushed it to the back of their minds. It didn't mean anything.

"Mmm… A little more, perhaps?" Dimentio reappeared somewhere far away from the group where they could never see him. "They are strong, but they must be stronger yet to defeat Bleck. I must make sure they can face him when the time comes around at last…" Dimentio disappeared again.

Timmy's celebration was still going strong. Currently, he was busy with signing White Wand controllers to his beloved fairy fans. A fairy that was a kid floated up to Timmy, holding a previously mentioned controller.

"Hi, I'm James. Will you sign my White Wand controller?" The fairy, James, asked, holding up said controller.

"To James, keep rocking, signed the Chosen One." Timmy said while writing what he was saying with a marker on the controller. "Your hero who stopped the Darkness and you love him because he's so cool."

Just after he finished, Wanda poofed in, interrupting him. "Uh, sorry to interrupt, your modest one, but you're late for your White Wand statue dedication." She proved this by pointing to something in particular on the clipboard she was holding.

"What? I can't leave my fans who love the Cho-" Timmy got cut off by Wanda poofing both of them out of the room.

Now, the two of them, including Cosmo and Poof, were at another celebration in Fairy World. Jorgen was standing next to them, about to unveil what appeared to be a statue that was hidden by a large red cloth. Thousand of fairies were cheering.

"And that is why we dedicate to Timmy Turner," Jorgen started as he gestured to Timmy with one hand, and the other about to pull the red cloth. "This Chosen One Statue of him holding the real White Wand that stopped the Darkness!"

Jorgen then quickly tore the red cloth off, revealing the statue. It was a marble statue of Timmy Turner in a heroic pose, holding up the White Wand with hiss left hand. At that, the fairies in the crowd all began cheering, "Chosen One!" Over and over.

"Hmm…" Timmy pondered, looking at the statue. "I'm not really sure that it captures my heroic essence."

Cosmo floated up to the statue and flicked its glutes, with no response. "Yeah, the glutes on this baby are way too tight."

"Come on, gluteus maximus." Wanda teased, still holding the clipboard. "It's time to hit the talk show circuit."

"What?" Timmy questioned, and the gestured to the fairy fans. "And leave thousands of screaming fan who love the cho-" Wanda wasn't having any of it, and once again, poofed him away mid-sentence.

A couple seconds later, Timmy was on the set of The Billy Crystal Show. The show had already begun, and Timmy poofed in right on time.

"We are back with everyone's favorite soft-glutted superhero, The Chosen One!" Billy said, sitting across from Timmy at his desk. "So, Big C, are you scared that The Darkness might come back and try to, oh, I don't know… destroy you?"

"Well Billy, if the Darkness comes back, it better come hungry." Timmy said, confident.

"Why's that?" Billy asked.

"Cause I plan on serving it up a fillet of fist!" Timmy said, standing up on the couch. He lifted up his arms, and from his fists were non-lethal flames. The fairies in the crowd cheered.

Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof were watching on a TV away from the set. "Where'd he get the flaming fists?" Wanda asked.

"Oh, he wished those up while you were in the can." Cosmo answered.

"That's why the Darkness is never coming back!" Timmy yelled to all of the fairies in the audience. "Uh uh! Oh no he didn't!" Timmy began chanting the words "Ooh ooh!" As did the other fairies in the audience, knowing that the Darkness was defeated and would never come back to Earth.


Mario, Peach, Violet, Junior, and Bowser had scaled the tree and defeated Dimentio.

The exhausted heroes were relieved to finally see the ivory towers of Fort Francis.

Was Tippi safe? Was the next Pure Heart really waiting for them ahead?

Their only answers were the strange voices carried on the wind from inside the fort…

The five were right in front of Fort Francis. It wouldn't be long before they would finally be able to confront Francis himself and at last reunite with Tippi. That being said, though, the group was collectively still exhausted from their previous encounter with Dimentio.

"So this is where that dweeb Francis lives?" Bowser asked.

"Yes, according to what Barry told us." Peach answered.

Bowser made a raspberry noise. "What's this castle got over mine?"

"Well, for one, it's bigger." Mario pointed out. Peach giggled a little at that remark.

"Shut it." Bowser said, knowing Mario was right. It wasn't his fault that his castle still needed to be renovated again.

"Well, I hope Tippi's alright." Violet said. "I'm starting to worry…"

The rest of the group agreed. Just what was going on inside that castle?

Behind a pair of locked doors inside the castle, Francis the chameleon was taking endless pictures of Tippi, who was locked in a cage.

Francis chuckled. "This is so hi-technical!" He took another picture. "It's a totally undiscovered digibutterfly species! Nerr! I must document it!" Another picture.

Though, inside the cage, Tippi was less than pleased. "Mario…" She whispered, hoping the plumber or one of his friends would save her soon.

"Yes! Shake that thorax!" Francis said after taking another picture, which only made Tippi feel worse. "The forum guys will be sooo jealous when I post these shots online!" He took yet another picture, of which there would be many more to come.

Outside, the group of 5 had to figure out a way to get in the castle. It wasn't as easy as just walking in, because the front door was locked. Luckily for them, there was a nearby pipe they found, thanks to using their flipping powers.

On the other end of the pipe was a room with a block on the ground and a blue switch raised high in the air. Junior used Thoreau to throw the block at the switch. It hit, and a few seconds later, a chest appeared on the floor, and in the chest was a key, presumably the one that would be used for the front door. The group went back up the pipe and back to the door, and sure enough, the key worked. They could now go inside.

Though before they did, they read the sign attached to the wall: "No entry unless you are a supergenius like me or a totally hot babe. STAY OUT!" They ignored the warning, and went inside.

The first room wasn't anything special. There was a door ahead of them, and also what looked like a robotic cat servant that would only say "Welcome home master." Which creeped them out a bit, so they immediately went through the next door.

The next room was a lot bigger. They walked past several more robotic cat servants, and to their left was a giant double door with a cat face on it, and there were two keyholes on it.

"Should we take a peek through those keyholes?" Junior asked.

Mario shrugged. "I don't see why not." He took a peek through the first keyhole, and what he saw made his blood boil. It was Francis, greedily taking pictures of… something. Though he looked through the other keyhole and his suspicions were confirmed.

Tippi had been caged like a wild animal while Francis took pictures as much as he liked… Mario just wanted to break down that door and beat the shit out of Francis and rescue Tippi right then, but he knew that would be impossible. He had to be patient.

The others looked through the two keyholes, almost all of them were disgusted at what was going on, but Bowser was a little confused since he had yet to see Tippi in person. Once Peach explained it to him, it made a bit more sense.

Now the group had multiple objectives. Find the Pure Heart, find two more keys, and rescue Tippi. Seemed easy enough, right?

The group continued on past the door. As they were walking to the next room, another small cat servant walked up to them. "Welcome back, master." It repeated, just as the other ones did. "The new space-combat sim, "Starship X-Naut: Space Bloops" has arrived by mail."

"Uh, thanks?" Violet said, confused. The 5 decided not to pay it any more attention and move on.

They went to the next room. In it, there was a flight of stairs they climbed up, though they were met with a surprise once they reached the top. There was what looked to be a… bigger version of the previous robotic cat servant, except this was huge, red, and was supposed to be more of a cop-like robot. But all that it did was patrol around, and shoot weird little robotic cat bombs that exploded after a few seconds, but the explosions weren't even that big or harmful. So the group went ahead and moved on to the next room.

In the next room, multiple small robotic cat guards tried to attack them, but they were easily disposed of. The room also contained two doors. What was strange about them was that they both were hanging off of something on the wall. With Thudley's help, they were able to get both doors to where they needed to be.

There was also a sign that read, "QUIET IN THE HALLWAY! Stomping disturbs Master's nap time!" It seemed like nobody was napping, so the sign was ignored.

Because there were two doors, the group decided to split up, since it would make sense that one key would be through each door. After a couple of minutes, Mario and Bowser decided to go into the left door, and Peach, Violet, and Junior decided to go through the right door.

Mario and Bowser had it easy when going through the left door. For starters, the room on the other side was nearly identical to one of the previous rooms the entire group went through. Just walking up some stairs and running into another one of those robotic red cat guards from earlier. And to their surprise, when the two tried to defeat it this time, they found that it just couldn't be hurt at all. How strange.

Awkward was the correct term to describe the current situation, considering the circumstances. Which was why Mario tried to start a conversation to ease the awkwardness and any potential tension that could arise.

"So… Bowser… how… have things been for you?" Mario asked. Okay, that might have not been the greatest question, but it was a start. They both walked into the next room, which turned out to lead outside. There was a platform with a huge drawbridge that was currently raised.

"Well, Mario, since you decided to ask, in case you didn't notice, it's been going pretty awful for me." Bowser said. "For starters, that stupid Count Bleck arranged a FAKE wedding between me and the Princess! Who would even do that? And then I just so happen to find out that the wedding caused the end of the world! So yeah, it's been awful! Ugh!" Bowser crossed his arms. "I wish I could just go and punch that Count Bleck in the face!"

"Trust me, I'd very much like to also punch Count Bleck in the face." Mario agreed. For a moment, he looked around to try to find a way to lower the drawbridge. "All of this bullcrap threw a wrench into the problems I've already had."

Bowser's interest was piqued. "…What problems?"

Mario took a deep sigh. This would be tough to explain. "Well… have you ever felt like you've had… gaps in your memory? Like, you try to think about how a previous day went, but only parts or none of it come up?"

"…That sounds weird." Bowser said.

"I know. It's so weird, because I can clearly remember what happened over the course of my days several weeks ago, but some events past that… are just gone. Like they were just ripped out of me." Mario explained. "Though, more recently, I've begun to mentally recover a couple of these memories."

Bowser wasn't really sure how to respond. "Can you explain them? …It is better to listen to something than to stand here all day figuring out how to work some stupid drawbridge."

Mario agreed again, though only mentally this time. "Well, the first one of these… it took place late at night. I don't really remember too much about it now except for the fact that Peach's eyes didn't look normal, but maybe that was just a trick of the light. The other one… is a lot clearer to me." Mario took a deep breath. "Do you know who Bill Cipher is?"

Bowser shook his head. "Sorry, not a clue. Why?"

"Well, a little while before we came here, I sort of… had a run in with Bill. Basically, I was stuck in some space… I think it was sort of a dreamlike state?" Mario started. "And he said that he would 'help' me collect the Pure Hearts, though I didn't trust him at all because while talking to him I got another memory, and this one…"

Mario was stuck. How should he put it? "It was a memory of me trying to clear my head to figure out what to get Luigi for his birthday, and I ended up finding a mural in some cave that looked exactly like him. Bill is basically this living yellow triangle with small black limbs, a single eye, no mouth, and he wore a bowtie and a top hat."

"You know, now that you mention it… one of the REALLY old members of the Koopa Troop had run into a mural like that. I'm not sure if it was the same one or not." Bowser explained.

"Do you know their name?" Mario asked.

Bowser shrugged. "No, but I do know that it's a she. Her name is in my underground records somewhere, it'd take me ages to find it."

"Is she still alive?"

"…No. She died of old age. Though I didn't get to see her very much, I do know from my other troops that she was a great leader, so there's that."

"Did your troops get any other information on Bill Cipher?"

"I don't know okay?" Bowser suddenly got hostile. "Now please, stop asking me so many questions!"

It was… weird to have a semi-normal conversation with Bowser, of all the people. And yet, it felt… right? Why couldn't things always be like this? Why did they have to resort to fighting?

"Okay, I'll stop." Mario said. "Hmm… alright, we need to find a way to lower the drawbridge."

"I know." Bowser said, interrupting the beginning of Mario's thought process.

Mario looked around, trying to see if there was anything that could lower the drawbridge. After several seconds of looking, he found something. A large lever, and it was sitting on a small platform above the door. Even with how high he could normally jump, Mario would never be able to reach that platform. Unless…

"Hey Bowser?"

"What? Didn't I tell you to stop asking me questions?" The Koopa King reminded. Mario noticed that he turned away from him and sat down.

"Well, I found a lever that I think would lower the drawbridge." Before Bowser could make any kind of snarky remark, he continued. "Only problem is that I can't reach it at all. Do… you think you could help me reach it?"

"What do you want me to do?" Bowser questioned. "Throw you?"

Mario shrugged. "If that works."

Bowser stood up. He took a deep breath, and then turned to face Mario. He walked over to the plumber, and looked up. "Hm… I think I can throw you that high." He looked back down. "You ready?"

Mario only nodded. Bowser became a bit more flustered as he carefully picked up Mario in his arms. It felt… weird to do this, so he just decided to get it over with quickly. Using all of his strength, he threw Mario up toward the platform.

Though, Bowser miscalculated a little, as Mario barely reached the platform. He grabbed onto the ledge to pull himself up, and then stood up. The large lever was right next to him. Mario got a grip on it. He pulled. Hard. It barely moved. He paused for a couple seconds, and then tried again, using up more strength than before.

After several seconds, Mario finally managed to pull the lever all the way. He was so tired that he had to sit down to catch his breath. A moment later, his theory was proven correct. The drawbridge that had prevented them from moving forward was now slowly lowering. It took about half a minute before it lowered completely.

And then, Mario tried to stand up. Though, something went horribly wrong. All of his overexertion, little sleep in the past couple days, and stress over everything else finally caught up to him. He was only human, this was inevitable to happen eventually.

Black spots appeared in Mario's vision. He became very dizzy. He couldn't see where he was going or what he was doing. He couldn't focus on anything. And before he knew it… Wait. Was… was he in Bowser's arms again? How did this happen? Soon, Mario's vision finally started to clear up. Bowser was looking right at him, as he lay in Bowser's arms.

"…You fell." Bowser confirmed. "You looked pretty out of it… Are… you okay?" Bowser was… embarrassed. He was now helping the person he once hated. Or, could hated even be the right word? Maybe a better term would be… rivalry.

"I'm…" Mario started. He coughed several times. "I'm fine." He could hardly move.

"Doesn't look like it." Bowser responded with a little snort. "Look… I'll carry you across, but that's it. Alright?"

Mario weakly nodded. And so, Bowser begun walking across the bridge as he carried the plumber. There was a bit of silence at first.

"So, uh…" Bowser said, unsure how to start. "After this is all over, maybe… we could work out a compromise or something. I dunno, I'm just really sick of the constant fighting, and stuff getting destroyed, especially my castle."

Bowser waited to see if Mario would respond. He didn't. "Playing those sports together was a fun time, maybe we can do that more often? I like playing sports. Ya know, maybe when this is all over, and… only if Peach and everyone else is okay with it… maybe I can have my actual wedding with Peach, and have it on the moon."

Before he knew it, Bowser was already on the other side of the bridge. He looked down to the plumber he was still carrying. "Um… do you feel well enough to get up?"

"…Yeah, I think I do." Mario said. He managed to slip off of Bowser's light grip carefully and stand up. He took a deep breath and waited for his fast heart rate to slow down. Thankfully, it soon did. "Yeah. I'm fine now."

"You sure?" Bowser raised an eyebrow.

"Since when did you care about me so much?" Mario questioned.

Bowser didn't know how to answer. He couldn't, for the sake of his pride. "Um… well…" He nervously put a hand on the back of his head. "Did… you hear my ramblings while I was carrying you?"

"Yeah." Mario answered. Bowser was a bit surprised. The koopa king stumbled over his words, but Mario interrupted him. "Look, we'll talk about it all when we're not constantly fighting for our lives. And besides, I still need to save Tippi. Now come on, we have to find a key."

Bowser simply nodded. He would try to push what happened on this bridge to the back of his mind, since other things were more important. But maybe… in the future, could the Mushroom Kingdom have a total change in leadership? Who knew…

Chapter Text

Mario and Bowser walked through the door ahead of them. Inside was a small room with another robotic cat servant, except this one looked more like a butler, which the two walked up to.

"You have reached the door to Master's private room." The robotic servant said. "For security purposes, you must confirm your identity. Answer the following security questions with either 'true' or 'false.'"

"Alright, sounds easy enough." Mario responded.

"First question: 'Video game soundtracks are totally hi-technical!'" The servant asked.

"…What?" Bowser asked, dumbfounded.

"Alright, Bowser. In order to answer this, we need to think like a nerd would." Mario explained.

"So… would it be 'true'?"

As it turned out, the answer was in fact 'true.' And… all of the answers were true. The two thought that getting the key would be easy, until… "Now, you must say the 4-letter passcode."

"Um…" Mario said nervously. The chance of either of them getting this correct was basically none, but they had to try anyway. "1987." At Mario's shot in the dark, the robotic servant began letting out excruciatingly loud meows, forcing Mario and Bowser to both cover their ears. After a few seconds, it finally stopped.

"You are not the master! Deploy security measures!" The servant yelled. In an instant, the floor disappeared except for where the servant was, leaving the other two to fall.

Meanwhile with Violet, Peach, and Junior, they were sort of… stuck. When they went into the room, nearly the entire length of the room was just long rows of spikes, with a door on the other side. Meaning, there was currently no way to cross. So, they decided to go back into the other room and wait. The three sat down on the floor next to the door.

"So, when do you think Mario and Bowser will be back with the key?" Violet asked.

"Who knows." Peach answered. "I'm not sure if it was a good idea to leave those two together, I'm afraid they might try and kill each other."

"I'm sure they'll be fine." Violet said.

"Are you sure?" Peach asked. "It's not really so much Bowser I'm worried about, it's Mario."

"Cause of what we talked about earlier?"

Peach nodded. And then she sighed. "You know, sometimes I think about the future. The Mushroom Kingdom as it is… isn't really in a good state."

"I can tell." Violet said. "The constant battle with Bowser over you has caused a lot of damage, and that combined with the currency inflation makes me very worried."

"Well… maybe you can just stop the fighting?" Junior cut in. "It should just be as simple as that, right?"

"Junior…" Peach began. "It's not as easy as that. If it could all be solved by just stopping the fighting, then… well… oh, I don't know. But it's not always just going to be that easy."

"Why?" Junior asked. Peach could almost cry at how innocent it sounded.

"Well… not everyone will have the same way of thinking." Peach explained. "Some people… won't want to stop fighting. Like if something that they truly loved and cared for was taken away, they would do anything to get it back, even if it meant fighting… and that's what Mario and Bowser both feel. But… what about what I want? And what about how others are affected?"

"Well… I usually only have all my siblings to hang around with." Junior said. "And… while I was stuck on Earth with Timmy, it felt nice to be able to hang out with someone else for a change."

"Timmy was a nice kid." Violet added. "Everything he did, I could tell that he cared about the safety of others, prioritizing them over himself."

"Yeah… he was nice." Peach agreed. "You know what… all of this talking has inspired me."

"In what way?" Violet asked.

"Well… after all of this is over…" Peach stood up. "I'm going to start doing things my own way. I'll make sure that the Mushroom Kingdom gets back into the best state it possibly can. And nothing will stand will stand in my way."

Violet also stood up. "And I'll be by your side every step of the way. Both me and Luigi will."

"I'll help in whatever way I can." Junior added, standing up. "Maybe I can see if my dad will help also. But… what about Mario?"

"We'll cross that bridge when we come to it." Peach answered. "For now… let's just focus on our current problems."

Miraculously, Mario and Bowser both landed on a well-placed cushion when they fell after giving the wrong password. They looked up. They were in a small dungeon, containing a large red switch, a block, and a Chain Chomp. They quickly took care of the Chain Chomp, and then brought the block over to the large red switch.

After the switch was pressed, a pipe appeared. The two went through it, and ended up in another dungeon-like room. There were more of the robotic cat attackers from earlier, but the two ignored them. There were two ways to go, a platform high up with a block to help them get up, or a lower pathway that was lined with spikes on the floor. It was obvious which path they took.

On the upper path, there was another sign, and they were relieved it was there. It read, "FOR FRANCIS'S EYES ONLY! Room on the right: 2323. Room on the left: 2828." Now they knew both passcodes, and if they made it in time, could relay the information to the other three. They kept going, and dropped down to a lower part of the floor, near the spikes.

And there was, behind a large cage, yet another Pixl, and a big blue switch. Bowser used Thudley to hit the switch, and the bars on the cage rose up into the wall, freeing the Pixl. The Pixl looked like a square box that had been opened and flattened out, with two eyes in the middle and had wings.

"Freedom!" The pixl, named Carrie, yelled in excitement. She floated upward. "Oh, finally I'm out! I didn't know what I was going to do! Thank you, thank you! I've been shut up in here forever… You'll never catch me in there again. I must repay you! I'm at your service. I'm sure you can find a use for my talent!"

There was a pause. "Hold on a second." Carrie continued. "Before we get all friendly, we should see if we're on the same page. You met Francis, right? What do you think of the guy? Your first impression?"

"Well…" Mario began. There was a lot of more… explicit things he would've liked to say, but he held back. For now. "He's… really nerdy."

"Ah, I see. I see. Anything else about him catch your eye?" Carrie asked.

"From what I could tell, he's really into butterflies." Bowser answered. "Really, really into them…"

"Oh?" Carrie responded. "Yes, I see how you would think that. So…sum it up. What do you think about him?"

"He's a monster!" Mario yelled suddenly, catching even Bowser off-guard. He paused and took a few deep breaths. "Yeah, a monster."

Carrie waited a few seconds before saying anything. "So you think Francis is a… Nerdy and butterfly fanatic? Basically, a monster? Well…imagine that! You and I feel the same way about him! We've got great harmony. Yep, I think we'll work perfectly. Together, nothing can touch us!" Carrie floated down to them.

"So, what exactly can you do?" Mario asked.

"Well, I can carry you and make you move a bit faster!" Carrie explained. "You see these spikes over here?" Carrie floated over to them. "Well, I can carry you across them like this!" Carrie folded into a large, floating platform that would let Mario and Bowser cross the spikes with ease.

The two stepped onto Carrie, and she floated across, safely bringing them to the other side, near the pipe they came in. They stepped off of Carrie, and went to the left end of the room, where there was a pipe.

They went through it, and ended up in a dark, completely black room. As Mario tried to feel for a wall, he ended up pushing a section of it away completely, revealing that it was just a fake wall. They stepped out, and saw that they were back at an earlier part of the castle.

They made their way back through the castle to the room with two doors. To their surprise, they saw the other three standing outside their door.

"How'd you come back from over there?" Violet asked.

"It was some stupid passcode that we couldn't answer, so we got dropped into a dungeon but we escaped." Bowser quickly explained. "Did… you find a key?"

"When we tried to go into the room, there were a bunch of spikes." Junior explained. "So we had to wait out here."

"Well, we found another pixl that can help with that." Mario explained. "Her name is Carrie, and she can help you get across spikes. Also, if you're getting asked questions, always answer true, and the passcode if you get asked for it is 2323."

Peach tried to take in all of the information. "Thanks… Mario." She paused. "Are… you doing okay being alone with Bowser."

"I'm fine." Mario said. That seemed to be his answer to a lot of questions about himself. "We're… working together pretty well."

"Uh, yeah. We… are." Bowser confirmed.

A small smile was on Peach's face. It looked like things would move in the right direction.

Mario and Bowser went back through their door, while Peach, Violet, and Junior now had Carrie, and were actually able to make some progress.

The three used Carrie to get across, and in the next room, they found themselves in a small room, similar to the one Mario and Bowser were at earlier. They walked up to the robotic cat butler in front of them.

Like Mario said, all the answers to the questions were 'true', and the passcode at the end was 2323. After answering all of the questions and giving the correct passcode, the butler said, "Welcome home, Master! Master's fantasy fortress is safe from intruders." And then, an elevator that wasn't there previously opened.

The three went inside, and waited as the elevator slowly rose. About a minute later, the elevator dinged, and then opened. They were in a room that… they would expect to find from a nerd, to say the least. There were posters plastered all over the wall of various animes, video games, and other media. Lined across the shelves were boxes, filled with various things in them.

"Alright," Peach started. "Let's look around the room and see if we can find a key."

"And see if the Pure Heart is stashed somewhere." Violet added.

The three looked around, pulling open drawers, rifling through shelves, and looking pretty much anywhere else they could.

Junior pulled out a piece of paper, though what was on it caught his eye. "In a shocking twist, the main character of 'The Grodus Chronicles' turns out to be the great-grandson of the emperor, when it was thought before that his great-granddad killed said emperor." It intrigued him, but only for a moment, so he tossed it aside.

Violet was pretty much dumping out entire boxes at a time, trying to get to the key or the Pure Heart as fast as possible. "This is taking forever." She grumbled. Though, in the next box she dumped out, she heard something… it sounded like a key. She quickly rifled through the papers that fell out and found what they all had been looking for. Well, one of the things they were looking for. One of the keys.

"Should we keep looking for the Pure Heart?" Junior asked.

"I think we should rescue Tippi first." Peach said. "She has an ability to sense where any Pure Hearts are."

"That makes sense." Violet responded.

The group of three had gone back down to the bigger room where the giant cat double doors with two keys were. At the same time, Mario and Bowser also came back with their key, but sadly no Pure Heart.

Not wanting to waste any more time, Mario and Violet put their respective keys in the keyholes. Though, when they did, the giant cat face on the door… began speaking? Not like it was out of place compared to everything else here.

"Both keys confirmed. Meow!" The cat door said. "Wait a meow moment. You look nothing like master! Only Master Francis and 'totally hot babes' are allowed to enter, and three of you are not!"

"…Is this thing serious?" Mario asked, appalled.

"Step back or you'll get the kitty lasers!" The cat door said. Mario, Bowser, and Junior nervously stepped back. With only Peach and Violet at the door, the cat door was pleased. It then started asking the two adults questions, similar to the ones from earlier, which all of the answers were 'true'.

After the questions were answered, the door finally opened, and the cat eyes closed. The three males tried to walk closer again, only to step back once the cat door eyes started to reopen.

"It looks like we'll have to do this alone." Violet said to Peach.

"Alright. Let's just try to see if Francis will be able to hand over Tippi peacefully, without a fight." Peach said.

Violet nodded in agreement. After looking back at the other three, she and Peach went into the room, unsure what to expect.

The room itself was big, though there wasn't much in it. Only… Francis with a camera, still taking pictures of Tippi; the butterfly was still trapped inside the cage.

"Nerr! Who are YOU?" Francis questioned, turning around. "H-hey! What are you two doing sneaking into my room, huh? Ever heard of p-privacy?"

Peach and Violet walked up to Francis. "There you are, Francis!" Peach yelled, angry. "We've been looking ALL OVER for you!"

"For… me?" Francis asked in confusion. He put his hands against the sides of his face and began sweating. He was starting to panic. "Oh my gosh… It's… It's two h-hot babes… Wha-What do I… Oh man… TWO REAL girls in my room! This is so hi-technical! Must… ca-ca-calm… down… I'm get-get-get-get…"

Right then, Peach and Violet were considering just trying to run past Francis and get Tippi.

"Getting way too excited…" Francis continued. "Sweatles…forming… Can't talk to…girls… Must get…my…laptop…from…Frannypack…" Francis grabbed his computer and begun typing a bunch of stuff. "Booting up ! Activating Nerr2Babe interface mod with real-time wooing!"

Then, for some strange reason, all three of them were… in a dating sim of some sorts? It didn't really make any sense. It didn't last long, though. Peach and Violet soon found out that they could use manipulate the options, and they used Boomer to destroy the dating sim. Francis's main computer was destroyed, and the dating sim was over.

Francis was… upset to say the least. "That was the only known copy of the Nerr2Babe patch, and now it's gone forever! Nerr… Real babes are scary!"

"…Peach? …Violet?" Tippi's soft voice rang out, reminding the two ladies of her presence.

"Tippi!" Violet said. "We were so worried about you!"

Tippi was a little surprised and relieved at the same time. "You… you came. To save me?"

"So…" Francis began, now knowing what was going on. "So you've come to raid my fort and steal Francine? W-Well… No! I won't let you." Francis blushed a little as he turned back to Tippi. "B-By the way, I came up with the name Francine on my own! Isn't it schweeet? At first it was a little weird that you could talk and everything. But the forum reaction convinced me you were hi-technical! You're my only…offline friend, Francine…so no one will take you away from me!"

"Eek!" Tippi managed to squeak out, before her and the cage she was in was lowered beneath the floor into a secret compartment.

Francis turned back to the two ladies. And then, he turned invisible. It made sense, since he was a chameleon. "Nerr! Can't see me? That's 'cause my invisibility powers are totally hi-technical! Little Francine is hidden, so you can't take her! Feel the wrath of the jilted X-Naut in the season finale of 'The Grodus Chronicles'!"

Peach and Violet knew that they had no other choice than to fight Francis. They didn't want it to have to come to this, but Francis gave them no other options. But how were they even going to defeat him? He was invisible, which made it near impossible to track where he went.

"Wait." Peach said. "If we listen very carefully, we can still hear his footsteps.

Violet strained her ears to listen. She could hear the footsteps. They were across the room. Violet used her ice powers and summoned a long pole of purple ice. She didn't want to hurt Francis too badly, just enough to get the message across.

Francis reappeared a bit away from them. Violet started running toward him first, followed by Peach. But before they could get anywhere close to him, Francis pulled out a large camera and took a picture with the flash on, temporarily blinding Peach and Violet. When they could finally see again, Francis was once again gone.

Peach and Violet tried to hear where his footsteps were. On the other end of the room. They ran to the other side of the room, right on time for Francis to reappear. Francis lashed out his tongue, though Peach and Violet were both way far away from it. They didn't want to know what would happen if they got caught on it.

Peach had already jumped in the air. She stomped onto Francis's head, dazing him for a moment. That gave Violet the perfect opportunity to hit Francis in the side with the pole, landing a clean hit, causing the chameleon to topple over onto his side.

After a moment, Francis vanished again. He reappeared moments later, several feet away from them. Francis got out another laptop and begun typing stuff into it. "Meowbombs, away!" He yelled, vanishing again.

A couple seconds later, several of the said Meowbombs dropped from the ceiling, some closer to exploding than others. Violet got an idea. Francis reappeared a couple feet away from them, about to pull out his camera again.

Violet put her plan into action. It was the perfect moment. She swung her pole at the Meowbombs, sending them flying toward Francis. The chameleon didn't have time to react. The Meowbombs all exploded into his face. He fell over. He was defeated.

A moment later, Francis got back up, tears in his eyes. "MERCY!" He yelled, running out of the room, slamming the doors open, not even noticing Mario, Bowser, or Junior as he ran past them.

Was the room finally safe to set foot in? The three walked in, and nothing happened. Looks like it was. They walked up to the two women.

"What happened?" Mario asked. "Where's Tippi?"

"She's-" Peach started, before the cage Tippi was in rose back up, and then disappeared. Tippi was… finally free.

"Mario… You guys came to save me…" Tippi said. There was… a feeling she couldn't explain, emanating deep within her.

Mario simply nodded in response. "It's good to finally see you again."

For a moment, Tippi didn't know what to say. "Thank you… Thank you, Mario!" 'I'm so happy…' To everyone's surprise, Tippi started glowing even more than usual.

"What the heck is going on?" Bowser asked.

Tippi was also pulsating, it getting stronger every moment. And then, against all odds… the Green Pure Heart appeared out of Tippi, and floated above Mario. Needless to say, everyone was shocked.

"The Pure Heart…?" Tippi asked, confused. "But…how…"

Peach thought up of an explanation that to her, made sense. "It's like Tippi's heart just burst with happiness and released a Pure Heart! Or…" She didn't have anything else to say.

"Mario…" Tippi began. "I was just so happy when I saw that you'd come to save me. Please… Take it."

"Alright. I will." Mario said. All of the previous pixls they've collected so far came out and danced around Mario as the Green Pure Heart slowly floated down to him.

In terms of collecting Pure Hearts, they were halfway there.

The fourth Pure Heart appeared in a dazzling flash of mysterious light.

What made it appear? The group was puzzled by this and many other riddles.

"… So you're not hurt?" asked Tippi, full of concern.

Somehow, Tippi seemed different than before. She had started to change.

Mario simply shook his head, even though that was a lie, and promptly used the Return Pipe to avoid a long journey back to Flipside.

It was around midnight at the barn. Steven was sleeping in the back of a truck that had a mattress on it, along with a pillow and blanket. Though, his sleep was soon interrupted as a large shadow was cast over him. He looked up and saw Garnet looking at him with her visor off, revealing all three of her eyes.

"Steven!" Garnet said with a smile on her face.

"Garnet!" Steven said. "Is it morning already?"

"It's midnight! Happy birthday, Steven!" Garnet answered.

"Oh man! Are you finally gonna tell me that you're a fusion of the gems Ruby and Sapphire like you promised?" Steven asked, holding Garnet's cheeks.

"You already know about all that Steven." Garnet pointed out to him.

Steven sighed and lied back down. "It's true."

"But what you don't know is how Ruby and Sapphire first met." Garnet added.

"Oh my gosh, I don't!" Steven said, stars in his eyes.

The Earth: 5750 years ago.

"It was a promising sight in the new gem colony." Garnet began. "But progress was being thwarted by a small, persistent group of rebels. A team of diplomatic gems from Homeworld were sent to investigate. Among those were Sapphire, a rare aristocratic Homeworld Gem, with the power to see into the future. Assigned to her were three Rubies; common soldiers, with a mission to protect her."

The four gems were walking on the Cloud Arena above Earth, passing by many other gems.

" Hey, can't wait for those rebels to get here." Ruby 1 said to Ruby 2.

Ruby 2 laughed a little. "When I see those rebels, I'm gonna punch 'em right in their faces!"

" What are you saying?" Ruby 1 questioned. "I'm gonna punch them all over their bodies, and then it'll be over."

" What if… I just punch you?" Ruby 2 said, walking behind Ruby 1 and punching her.

" Oh, come on." Ruby 3 said. "We'll punch them together when we fuse. That's why they sent three of us."

" Three this!" Ruby 1 yelled, quickly turning around and punching Ruby 3, causing her to accidentally bump into Sapphire.

At that, the other gems that saw it gasped. Ruby 3 was also in shock. "Oh, I, um, I'm so sorry, lemme, uh-"

" I'm fine." Sapphire said.

" What?" Ruby 3 asked, confused.

" It's okay. It was bound to happen." Sapphire said, her future vision already foreseeing this.

" Oh… okay." Ruby 3 said, understanding what Sapphire meant.

" Now, please wait here." Sapphire said. "I must attend to my duties." The three Rubies stood firmly in place as Sapphire walked up to Blue Diamond's palanquin; though Ruby 3 couldn't help but keep looking at her.

"Sapphire had been called to Earth by Blue Diamond, specifically to share her vision of the future."

" My Diamond, I've arrived." Sapphire said, parting the curtains to Blue Diamond's palanquin. The Diamond herself was sitting in her chair, while her Pearl was standing next to her.

" Sapphire. Tell me what will happen here." Blue Diamond said.

" I foresee the rebels attacking the cloud arena," Sapphire started to explain, using her future vision. "Before they're cornered, they'll destroy the physical forms of seven gems, including two of my Ruby guards, and myself. Immediately after my form is destroyed, the rebels will be captured. The rebellion ends here."

" Thank you, Sapphire." Blue Diamond said, relieved. "That's all I needed to know."

" I look forward to speaking with you again once I reform back on Homeworld." Sapphire said. She bowed to Blue Diamond, and then exited the palanquin, walking back to the three Rubies.

"Sapphire knew she would be a casualty. But it did not faze her. She saw her whole life laid out before her. And she already accepted all of it."

Sapphire returned to stand by Ruby 3. "What a beautiful place to build a colony." Sapphire remarked, causing Ruby to freeze up a little. "I wish I could've seen more of this planet."

" Uh, there's still time." Ruby 3 said.

" That is a nice thought," Sapphire said, smiling slightly. "But no." Then, there was a booming voice.

" Blue Diamond, leave this planet! This colony will not be completed!"

At that, many of the gems nearby started to yell up a storm, demanding things like, "Show yourselves!" and "Where are you!"

Pearl, holding a sword in each hand, stood on a pillar, many feet above the other gems while Rose Quartz, the other Crystal Gem, floated above her Pearl. "We are the Crystal Gems!" The two said in unison.

"The attack was right on schedule."

Blue Diamond activated her palanquin to move out of the way. Pearl jumped down to the floor and ran up to two gems charging at her. In an instant, she sliced through both of them with her sword, destroying their forms, forcing them to poof into their gems. Two other gems then raced toward Pearl, and again she sliced through their forms, making that a total of four poofed gems.

The three Rubies let out war cries as they quickly fused into a singular large and strong Ruby. The Ruby fusion ran up and tried to punch Rose, but even though she was standing still, she had a trick up her sleeve. With a flurry of punches and kicks from Rose, the Ruby fusion was forced to unfuse.

In a split second, Pearl sliced through two of the Rubies, poofing them, leaving only Ruby 3 behind. She fell to the ground while the other two Ruby gems made a large clanging sound. And then, Pearl jumped in front of Sapphire, ready to slice through her form.

" Thank you Ruby, you did your best." Sapphire said solemnly, knowing what was going to happen to herself.

"Ruby suddenly realized what Sapphire meant. She had known that Ruby would fail. Sapphire had accepted it. But Ruby… Ruby could not!"

" No!" Ruby suddenly yelled. Against all odds, in a split second, as Pearl was about to strike, Ruby sprinted forward and grabbed Sapphire, getting her out of the way. The two were holding each other for a brief moment before… they fused. Into what would now be known as Garnet.

A fusion between two different kinds of gems was unprecedented, though all Garnet could think about at the moment was her new form. Because it was their first time ever fusing with each other, their form was unstable. Her hair was a mess of blue and pink, one leg had a boot on and the other didn't, her clothing was partly ripped, and all sorts of other things.

Garnet looked at her gems. Before the fusion, both gems had been the color they should've always been, Sapphire's blue and Ruby's red. But now, both of their gems were a darkish red. "What… what is this?" She finally managed to say.

The other nearby Homeworld gems didn't know what to say or do about the fusion. Pearl shook her head, and then was about to go in to attack, though Rose stopped her by grabbing onto Pearl's arm.

" Wait." Rose said. "This is…" She paused, noticing the Homeworld Gems closing in on her and Pearl.

" Uh, bye!" Pearl said as the two of them jumped up, none of the Homeworld Gems knowing where the rebels went.

Garnet was still in disbelief about what she was. "Is this…" She began, though she accidentally unfused, leaving behind Ruby and Sapphire.

"The Homeworld Gems started closing in around Ruby and Sapphire. They had never seen fusion of two different types of gems."

The Homeworld Gems' voices rang out to Ruby and Sapphire. "Unbelievable!" "Disgusting!" "This is unheard of!"

Blue Diamond's voice cut through the crowd. "The rebels have fled. Sapphire, this is not the scenario you described!"

" This is… not what I saw…" Sapphire said in fear of what wrath her Diamond might invoke upon her. "I don't know what happened, I-"

" No!" Ruby said, jumping in front of Sapphire. "It was me!"

" Clearly," Blue Diamond said. "How dare you fuse with a member of my court."

" Forgive me, I-"

" You will be shattered for this!" Blue Diamond said, making a shattering motion with her hand.

The Homeworld Gems started to close in around Ruby and Sapphire, intent on capturing the two. Though, Sapphire had a plan. Quickly thinking quickly, she grabbed Ruby's arm, and ran past the Homeworld Gems.

" Wait! What are you doing?" Ruby asked in a panic. Sapphire jumped off the edge of the Cloud Arena, and fell to Earth, Ruby in tow. "No!" Ruby yelled.

Eventually, they landed on Earth, though their landing was light, thanks to Sapphire's dress making them float. After they landed, Sapphire let go of Ruby. And to make matters worse, it started raining.

" Why'd you do that?" Ruby asked. "I have to get you back up there!"

" But they were gonna shatter you!" Sapphire argued.

" Who cares? There's tons of me!" Ruby said. She looked up at the clouds, rain pouring down from them. She then looked at the open fields ahead, the hills going for miles. "What do we do now?"

"Sapphire had known every moment of her life. How it would happen, and when. But because of Ruby's impulsive gesture, she suddenly jumped the track of fate. And everything from that instant on was wrong. She couldn't see, she couldn't move, she was… frozen."

The area around Sapphire slowly became encased in ice, though Ruby was quick to pull her up out of it and carry the blue gem. "We have to get you outta here. Let's go."

Ruby carried Sapphire until they came across a small cave, just big enough for them to hide in until the rain stopped. Ruby set Sapphire down gently, allowing her to sit down. "Alright, this should be good for now." Ruby said.

Sapphire parted her hair for a moment, allowing Ruby to see her singular eye. "Thank you." Sapphire said in true thankfulness. Ruby stared for a moment until she realized, at her own feet, a small fire formed. She laughed nervously.

Soon, after putting out the first fire, they used some of the stray twigs and sticks on the ground to create another, more controlled fire.

" What kind of Ruby am I supposed to be?" Ruby asked herself, pacing around the small cave. "Look at this, it's all my fault you're stranded here. How am I gonna save you?"

" You already did." Sapphire answered.

" What?" Ruby questioned, not understanding.

" You already saved me." Sapphire said.

After a moment, Ruby sat down and looked at the fire, just as Sapphire was doing. And, as the two stared at the fire, they both couldn't help but think back to the fusion the two of them had created back at the arena. How it was so new, how everything about it was just… right.

" I've seen gems fuse before…" Sapphire started. "But I had no idea that's what it felt like. I always thought- I never realized that fusion- you just disappear like that."

" It's never like that!" Ruby argued. "Whenever I fused, it's always been just me, but bigger… I've never had a third eye before."

" I've never had more than one. It was nice."

Ruby laughed a little. "Yeah…"

After the rain had stopped, the two went out of the cave and back into the open fields. The sun was slowly coming up, so Ruby shielded her eyes for a moment. But the two of them both couldn't look away due to just how beautiful it all looked.

" Where did we go? What did we do? I think we made something entirely new."

Ruby and Sapphire explored a nearby forest. Sapphire ducked under a lopsided tree, though she didn't notice the butterfly that landed on her hand. Ruby walked over to look at it, but it tried to fly away. But, a lone frog latched its tongue onto the butterfly, attempting to eat it. But it didn't get the chance as Ruby quickly picked up the frog and chuckled at it, allowing the butterfly to escape. Sapphire soon joined in the chuckling, because the frog was just an odd and strange creature to the two of them.

" And it wasn't quite me, and it wasn't quite you, I think it was someone entirely new."

Before long, night befell them again, and they lied on a hill, looking at the moon.

" Oh, um… well I just can't stop thinking…" Ruby said.

" So, um… you say I was different."  Sapphire added.

" And you hadn't before,"

" Of course not, when would I have ever?"

" I'm so sorry,"

" No, no, don't be,"

Ruby sat up.  "And now you're here forever!"

Sapphire also sat up.  "What about you?"

" What about me?"  Ruby repeated.

" Well you're here too. We're here… together." Sapphire placed her hand over Ruby's hand.

Later that night, the two went back into the forest, knowing what they both had to do. While humming, the two began a slow dance. They were going to hold hands on both sides, but since on one side their gems would get in the way, Sapphire decided to hold Ruby's shoulder, while Ruby decided to hold Sapphire's hip.

And then, their dance had begun. At first, it was slow, but soon, the dance became faster, and they started turning each other around. And then, once again, their forms seemed to turn into light for a moment as they fused into Garnet.

"I was back. I was someone and I didn't know who. But, I felt like I was getting the hang of my new form. And then I fell."

Garnet tripped and tumbled down the large hill for several seconds until she finally came to a stop at the base of it, small pink pedals clinging to her. "Ow." She opened her eyes, only to see a sword pointed at her, so she quickly jumped to sit up. "Don't hurt her! Don't hurt… me?" She tried to correct.

Pearl looked down and saw exactly whom she was pointing her sword at. "It's you. The fusion."

" We didn't mean to fuse!" Garnet quickly tried to explain. "W-Well, we did this time. We'll unfuse! W-We'll…" She was stopped by the leader of the Crystal Gems herself, Rose Quartz, walking up to her. Pearl walked over to the side to allow Rose to see Garnet.

" No no, please." Rose said, in her smooth, calming voice. "I'm glad to see you again."

"And there they were. Rose Quartz, the leader of the rebellion, and her terrifying renegade Pearl."

" I don't… upset you?" Garnet curiously asked, sitting up a little.

" Who cares about how I feel," Rose laughed, bending down to Garnet's level. "How you feel is bound to be much more interesting."

" How… I feel?" Garnet asked, unsure. And then, all of her emotions began spilling out. "I feel… lost. And scared. And happy. Why am I so sure that I'd be this, than everything I was supposed to be? And that I'd rather do this than everything I was supposed to do?"

Rose laughed in amusement, standing back up. "Welcome to Earth." She smiled, with Pearl smiling alongside her.

" Can you tell me?" Garnet stood up. "How was Ruby able to alter fate? Or why was Sapphire willing to give up everything? W-What am I?"

"No more questions." Rose simply stated, stopping Garnet in her tracks. "Don't ever question this." She grabbed both of Garnet's hands and turned them over. "You already are the answer."

And that was a promise that Garnet just had to keep, almost like it was an order.

Garnet's story was finished.

"So… what was it?" Steven asked. Garnet smirked and raised an eyebrow. "The answer?"

"Love." Garnet answered.

"Wooow, I knew it." Steven said.

"So did I." Garnet said.

Ruby and Sapphire would remain together for as long as existence as itself, but even though they did have a fight in the past, nothing could cause them to potentially split up in the future… right?

Chapter Text

"…And that is how the ruffians managed to best me." Dimentio finished. Today, there was another minion meeting at Castle Bleck, with Count Bleck, Nastasia, O'Chunks, Mimi, and Dimentio all being in attendance.

Dimentio laughed. "They are strong, to be sure… Very strong. Dare I say… They might be strong enough to defy the prophecy!"

Count Bleck put a hand to his chin. "Spare Count Bleck your theatrics. The Light Prognosticus is false." He said. "The Dark Prognosticus holds the answer to eliminating heroes that rise to stop us."

"Oh my. That's the first time that morsel of information has touched my ears. Do tell!" Dimentio responded, intrigued.

Count Bleck laughed a little. "In due time, Dimentio. In due time." He turned to face Nastasia. "Oh, Nastasia? It's time we set him on these pests. I trust that Bill has done a fine job of training him."

"Yeah, um, I can take care of that for you, Count." Nastasia said.

Count Bleck turned back around to once again face the other minions. "Lovely, exclaimed Count Bleck. Return to your posts, my dear minions."

"As you command, Count!" Dimentio, O'Chunks, and Mimi all said. The three all left the room, leaving Count Bleck and Nastasia standing alone. Nastasia sighed.

"Does something trouble you, Nastasia?" Count Bleck asked.

"Yeah, Count…" Nastasia answered. "You know, there's still time… You can still change your mind."

"That is enough, Nastasia. We've already come this far, so we shall forge on!" Count Bleck said. "But you needn't stay by Count Bleck's side. You can depart with my blessing."

Nastasia was a little surprised and perked up. "Um, no, my count. I won't be doing that. My life is already sworn to you. Yeah, it's belonged to you since the day you saved me… I'll be sticking it out with you until my game ends, 'K?"

"If that pleases you…" Count Bleck said. He left, Nastasia shortly following after.

"My my my! How interesting!" A voice rang out. "Nastasia and the count have such DEEP conversations!" Dimentio soon reappeared. "Mm… Just what is our dear count playing at? Ah, well. I'll let him worry about that. I must attend to my own…projects." He left again.

" Timpani, why? Why do you avoid me?"

" Ow… OW! Unhand me!"

" Huh You're crying! Why? Timpani, you must tell me what has happened!"

" It's nothing… Don't worry about it… Just forget it…"

" Oh no… Timpani, is my father behind this?"

" I'm… I'm just an ordinary girl. No matter how much I love you, we must part."

" Timpani… I…"

" This is good-bye, Blumiere. There's no other choice. This is our fate…"

Mr. L was exceeding expectations, to say the least.

Though, that was mostly thanks to Bill's help. Mr. L didn't even need to get brainwashed. He basically considered his past life dead. Following the Count was his new life. And Bill would help him every step of the way.

Wanting to further eradicate his older life, Mr. L sported an entirely new costume. His hat was still green, though the L was backwards and surrounding it was black instead of white. His boots were gray, and so were his gloves. He wore a green bandana on his neck. His overalls and shirt were both black, making it hard to tell what part was the shirt, and additionally he wore an orange and yellow belt. Lastly, he wore a black bandana around his eyes, with holes for his eyes so he could see.

Training had gone much faster thanks to Bill's help. Some of the time, Mr. L himself would be training, but most of the time, Bill would be contro-helping Mr. L. Though, right now, he was currently taking a break, sitting down in one of the 'elite' minion rooms in the castle. There weren't many in here right now, though that could be thanks to that most of the elite minions were doing other missions.

Mr. L's thoughts drifted. Right now, he was in cont-not being helped by Bill. There wasn't much point to it right now, he was taking a break. But… why did his mind keep going back to the word 'control'? That would imply that it wasn't being done willingly, but it was. So why did he keep coming back to it?"

'It's because everything you know now is a lie.' A small, insignificant voice in the back of his mind said to him. The voice was persistent. Almost like an echo of his past self. He tried to make it go away by blocking it out with thinking about other stuff. It never worked. He needed to try a new tactic.

"Yeah, everything I did know was a lie. And that's why I'm living this new life." Mr. L said out loud. Thankfully no one paid attention to what he said.

'No, you don't get it. Why do you trust these people over the ones who care about you?' The voice was annoying, almost like a bug. Never leaving you alone.

"These people do care about me. Not… those other assholes." Why did he hesitate?

' How could you call them assholes? Mario, Violet, Peach, and all of your other friends would die for you!'

Mr. L snorted as if this was a joke. "Bullcrap. They'd rather pull some elaborate scheme to act like my birthday doesn't exist than help me in any way."

' Is that what you really believe?'

"Yes." Mr. L crossed his arms. "It's the truth."

'Are you so sure about that?' The voice got more annoying with every word.

" Of course I'm sure. Nobody here would lie to me."

' Why do insist on lying to yourself? If you stopped to think about it for a damn moment instead of looking through it with rose-colored glasses, you'll see just how many holes are in this so-called 'truth' of yours!'

Wow, this voice was getting persistent. Though… it might have a point? No. Stop lying. What Bill told him was nothing but the truth. The voice was trying to mess with him, trying to stop him from helping create the better world Count Bleck promised.

"I'm not going to sit here and listen to you spout off useless gibberish." Mr. L stated. "Get the hell out of my head. Now. I know what the right choice is."

' You can't get rid of me. I'll stick around like a weed until you realize just how much you're doing wrong. Do you not see what truth lies in front of you? Are you really that stupid, blinded by WHAT C-'

Mr. L slapped his hands around his ears. He strained hard, and the voice suddenly stopped. Good. He was tired of hearing the annoying thing, anyway.

Not too long ago, Mr. L had gotten news on where he would be stationed. Near the next Pure Heart those worthless heroes would inevitably go after. He'd stop them right there. He had to prove that he was worthy of Count Bleck.

And with Bill's help, he just might.

Terrance hadn't thought much about breakfast that morning. Terrance had made the usual; just a bowl of cereal, some bacon, and a glass of orange juice for the each of them.

The past few days had been… weird. They had gone to the KISS Concert, right? They had even invited Crocker along for the ride. So… why did it feel so weird?

Breakfast between him and Tamara was quieter than usual. The most obvious reason was… Timmy was gone.

Tamara couldn't eat. She said what she was thinking. "I can't believe that we forgot about our own son for several days and called him a street urchin."

"I know." Terrance said. He took a sip of his orange juice and picked at his cereal with his spoon, and then took his fork and ate a bite of his bacon. "How could we have done something like that? We're awful parents."

"Well, hang on a second." Tamara interjected. "It's not like we chose to forget about him. Something else had to have been the cause." She ate some of her cereal.

"You might be onto something." Terrance replied. "But what?"

"Well, when Timmy walked in here a couple days ago, he didn't seem to know that our memories of him were gone." Tamara pointed out. "And… it was right after we wanted to talk to him about… what was it?"

"How almost everything he owns is either pink or green?" Terrance answered. "And more recently also purple?"

"Just how long has this been going on?" Tamara asked.

"Over a year." Terrance ate some of his cereal. "I wish Timmy was here so we could all talk about it together. But now he's just… gone."

Tamara stood up. "Then we should file a missing persons report, like we should've done! I don't want my baby in any danger!"

"…I think it's too late for that." Terrance said.

"What do you mean?"

"Well…" Terrance began. "Remember on our way to the concert, we saw that newspaper about how Timmy was chased by some robot? Or how we actually saw it earlier while we were getting ready to go? Or when we finally made it to the concert, it looked like a warzone? The ceiling was blown off!"

Tamara slowly sat back down. "What's your point, dear?" She drank a sip of her orange juice.

"I'm saying that… well… I'm not really sure." Terrance admitted. "But!" He quickly added. "This may sound really far-fetched, but… you know how in movies such as Harry Potter, or The Matrix, or even Lord Of The Rings, how the main characters have a destiny?"

Terrance paused, waiting to see if Tamara would answer. When she didn't, he continued. "I think Timmy… might have one of these destinies. And honestly, it would explain a lot."

Tamara thought for a moment. How much would it really explain? Hm… considering that they didn't get to see much at all, she couldn't really pinpoint any specific details, so she didn't have a lot to work with.

Well… how long would Timmy have had this 'destiny' for, anyway? Hm… perhaps as long as he's had the pink and green things? That could work. But what about the purple one? She couldn't explain that.

"I think I'm starting to get it." Tamara said. "So, those pink, green, and purple things could act as Timmy's guardians, right?"

"I could see that. But why would he needs those guardians?" Terrance asked. "We're right here."

"Well, maybe there's an event that caused this to happen." Tamara reasoned. She ate some of her bacon. "I have to admit, this is good bacon."

"Thanks!" Terrance said. "Anyway, what event could possibly have led to this happening?" He thought for a moment, while taking a sip of his orange juice. It was nearly empty. "Hmm… it did happen right after we hired that babysitter for him so we could go out more."

"You mean Vicky? Doesn't she have a sore throat right now?" Tamara asked. "I feel bad for her because of that."

"Well, I don't think you should." Terrance said. "Timmy tried to tell us multiple times that she wasn't a good babysitter, or that she was evil and punished him for nothing."

"He has told us that multiple times." Tamara said. "But-" Wait. The two events clicked. A frown. Tamara got up and walked over to her cell phone, which she left on the counter. She dialed a number.

As Terrance got up out of his seat and walked up to her, Tamara waited for the person on the other end to pick up. After a couple of rings, she eventually did. On the other end, there was coughing.

"Ugh, what-COUGH is it?" It was Vicky, still sick. "Sorry, I-COUGH COUGH still can't-COUGH babysit Timmy, cause-"

"Vicky, you're fired." Tamara put it bluntly. She hung up. She took a deep breath. "Well, that takes care of one problem."

"I don't think that'll magically fix things." Terrance said.

"I know it won't." Tamara responded. "But at least it's a step towards helping to prevent our son from being in danger."

"You're right." Terrance said. "You know, we need a little break from all this. Timmy is bound to come back soon." He paused for a moment, gauging Tamara's reaction. "Why don't we just get our breakfast and go watch some TV to clear our heads?"

"Alright. Sounds good." Tamara agreed.

"Just let me get one thing I think might help us." Terrance said. As he went to get his breakfast, there was a camera on the counter he left there. He picked it up, and it sparkled. "This might help us figure out everything…"

The group of 5, now including Tippi, who was very grateful to be back, went back through the yellow door, returning to Flipside.

"That was…a little weird for a while, but we seem to have gotten through it OK…" Peach commented.

"I agree, what with the nerdy giant chameleon, his castle, and all the other strange stuff we encountered." Violet agreed.

"I'm so sorry…" Tippi apologized. "It was all my fault… And… Then… You all… Thank you all so much…"

"You're welcome." Mario said.

Bowser was less than impressed. "Pbbtth! Wanna know how to thank me, bugface? Just stay outta my way, OK?"

"Don't you think that's a little rude?" Peach asked. "Also, come to think of it… could you be our next hero?"

"That would be convenient." Junior pointed out.

Just then, Merlon walked up to them. "Ho there! I have been waiting for you, young heroes! Did you succeed in your search for the next Pure Heart?"

"I guess we did…" Tippi sadly answered.

"It was weird, though." Mario started to explain. "Tippi got kidnapped by this chameleon guy called Francis, and when we rescued her at Francis's castle, the Pure Heart… sort of came out her."

"Intriguing…" Merlon said, pondering the information. "I think that castle was once a dwelling of the Ancients I told you of earlier. It seems that my ancestors have roamed far and wide in their dimensional travels. 'In the castle beyond the great sea, we hid a Pure Heart and sealed it safely…' Yes, I remember reading such a passage in the Light Prognosticus. The seal could only have been broken by a powerful pulse of love and trust…"

"So, it was because Tippi began to trust us that we found the Pure Heart?" Violet asked, trying to make sense of it all. "That's…" She couldn't find the right words.

"And now there is an additional hero!" Merlon said with a laugh. "I don't know where the rest are, but waste no time in searching, my friends."

"Oh, please! Come on, people!" Bowser said. "With me here, you don't need anybody else, seriously! Trust me, any problem comes up, I'll stomp it into next week! I'll Bowserize it!"

"Oh ho! Well met, Mr. Bowser!" Merlon said. Then, he remembered something he read not too long ago. "It is odd, though. The Light Prognosticus only had a mention of one koopa being a part of the ten heroes. Though, I'm sure it's nothing. May your strength protect this grou-"

Merlon was interrupted by a sudden shaking feeling like it was coming from everywhere. And what happened, everyone in the group dreaded would happen. The Void grew. Again.

"It seems The Void has expanded once more…" Merlon said. "Time is short!"

"We have to keep going… We must start looking for the next Heart Pillar…" Tippi said, urgency in her voice.

"There are matters I must attend to as well…" Merlon added. "I must search for any item of significance in the Light Prognosticus…" He walked away, back to his house.

There was a moment of silence.

"So… what's gonna happen now?" Bowser asked, a little confused.

"First, we're gonna find the next Heart Pillar to put the Pure Heart in." Mario said. "And then…" He stopped to yawn. "Maybe… get some sleep. I'm tired." Mario felt like every bone in his body was aching. How long had it been since he'd gotten some decent rest? Aside from passing out at Merlee's Mansion, it was all the way back when he, Peach, and Tippi had only gotten the second Pure Heart.

"I think we all need to sleep." Junior said. He also yawned.

The rest of the group unanimously agreed to this. After all, getting the Pure Hearts would practically be impossible if they were sleep-deprived for too long. But first, they would put the Pure Heart in the correct pillar. And then, they would get the rest they needed and deserved.

The group made their way down the elevator to the second floor. They walked on the path they had been on previously when trying to find the previous Pure Heart, and they came across the lowered pillars again. Now that they had Thudley, they were able to use his ground pound ability to get the 5 small pillars in the correct sequence.

And it just so happened that from doing that, the Heart Pillar rose up out of the ground. Mario put the Green Pure Heart in the pillar only moments later. Like all the others, the Heart Pillar glowed green. A beam of that same color soon shot into the sky. The next door had appeared.

But they weren't going to rush things. They needed to sleep, even if it would only be for a couple hours. That wouldn't hurt, right? They stayed at the inn and paid the fee necessary for all of them stay. And then… before drifting to sleep, they got lost within their thoughts.

Mario was worried, but he tried not to show it. Tippi finally being rescued was a small bit of relief to him, but that was only just a small weight lifted in all that has been thrown his way. The threat of The Void, Bill Cipher, and Luigi's unknown fate all plagued him constantly. It's as if every time he woke up, a new threat would come his way. Just what could happen next?

Peach never felt more conflicted. The more she thought about it, the more she… wanted to be herself. She didn't want to have to constantly be rescued, or be forced into marrying someone she didn't want to. Sure, Mario was… acting a bit odd right now, but she still… trusted him more than Bowser. For now. She didn't know what would happen in the future. But what would happen… would be her decision, and hers alone.

Violet almost constantly had one thing sticking out in her mind. The note she found during her brief visit to her house. She had reread it over and over in her mind dozens of times. What did it mean? What would've happened if she did go into one of those rooms? …Maybe it was best she didn't know.

Bowser felt like… well, he didn't know what he felt. Especially toward Mario. They were supposed to be enemies, right? So why… did it feel… much different than that? No, he wasn't in love with him. That would just be gross. It was more like… two very good friends. Bowser did have a softer side, he just preferred not to show it. His pride was hard to let go of, after all.

Junior found it very hard to sleep. What did Merlon mean when the Light Prognosticus said that only one koopa among them was one of the heroes? Was… was it meaning that… he wasn't? Only his dad? Junior shed a small tear at this. Though… it wasn't wrong. Nothing would erase the atrocity he committed down in that sewer days ago. He wished that it could just be erased from existence. But that wasn't possible. That event was a part of him… forever. Dimentio was right when he said that Junior wasn't a hero.

Tippi… couldn't help but feel… different. Being trapped in that cage for so long while some giant chameleon was taking pictures of you constantly would take a huge toll on your psyche. But when she finally rescued, she felt something. And… it felt familiar? But she didn't know where the feeling came from. So, she tried to sleep.

And so did the rest of the group. All of them eventually fell asleep, hoping that they would be able to tackle whatever would be behind the green door. They would be able to handle it… right?

Yugopatamia was a planet that thankfully, wasn't Gem controlled, as it was deemed "too-unsanitary" to colonize. There was a good reason for it being called that, due to how… disgusting everything there was. It was basically the opposite of Earth. Chocolate was deadly, mulch was a delicacy, and those upon many other things were what made it pretty much an opposite of Earth.

The main inhabitants were Yugopatamians; squid-like aliens. Right now, nothing eventful was happening, which was why at this moment in time, King Gripullon walked to the patio of the capitol to join his wife, Queen Jipjorrulac in sightseeing,

"Ah, another glorious Yugopatamian day!" Gripullon said, looking at the scenery. "The garbage is in bloom, the swamp monsters are singing," Just then, one of the said swamp monsters let out an unearthly gargling noise.

"And the sky is full of giant fireballs heading right for us." Jipjorrulac added, just as happily.

"It's just like the night we first-" Gripullon started, only to shortly realize that the event Jipjorrulac described never usually takes place on Yugopatamia. "Giant fireballs?!"

Dozens of the giant fireballs began raining down from the sky, landing on various structures and the ground. "We're under attack!" Gripullon yelled before running back into the capitol, accidentally knocking over Jipjorrulac.

The fireballs that rained down weren't just a stray meteor shower. No, they weren't even fireballs. Well, technically, they were fireballs. It's just that they were ships. And out of those ships came… Eliminators.

The Yugopatamians came prepared, with many tanks and fighter jets. Though… they thought they were prepared. Even though they managed to take down a couple Eliminators, all it took was a couple blasts and nearly all of the available fighters were out of commission, the tanks and fighter jets being incinerated.

Inside the capitol, Gripullon pressed a button on the wall, and three escape pods rose out of the floor, which both him and Jipjorrulac both ran up to.

"Are you sure you know how to operate the royal escape pods?" Jipjorrulac asked.

"Of course, I'm the king!" Gripullon answered. He grabbed a small remote with a single blue button that's only purpose was to activate the three escape pods. "Watch." He pressed the button, and the middle escape pod activated and took off. "Um, one of us probably should've been on that."

Jipjorrulac tried to take the remote before something else happened. "Oh give me that remote before you-" She stopped upon realizing that in taking the remote, she accidentally pressed the button, causing yet another one of the escape pods to take off, leaving only the one on the right. "My bad." Jipjorrulac said with a nervous laugh.

"Only the prince's pod is left!" Gripullon exclaimed, gesturing to the pod in front of him. "But Mark is spending his days on Earth hating his home planet, and chilling with the great space warrior, Timmy Turner." Gripullon got a picture of Timmy and showed it to his wife to emphasize his point.

"Isn't that Mark right there?" Jipjorrulac asked, pointing a tentacle to the other side of the room.

"Yo, parental units! Sup?" Mark himself said, and then walked over to them. "Ok, I came home for a new Fake-i-Fier as my old one's on the fritzo and only converts me into ladies' footwear." To demonstrate his point, he spun the pink Fake-i-Fier, and proceeded to turn into multiple different kinds of ladies' shoes.

"Oh, nice pump." Jipjorrulac commented on one of them.

After Mark transformed back to normal, he went over to the stash of spare Fake-i-Fiers in the room. He took his malfunctioning one off, dropped it, and was about to grab a new one when suddenly two of the fireballs crashed into the room, Eliminators walking out of them.

At this, Gripullon grabbed Mark and practically threw him into the only escape pod. "Quick! Go to Earth, my son." Gripullon said. "And carry on the legacy of our beloved planet. Though you will be superior to earthlings, do not set yourself abo-"

He paused as the escape pod suddenly took off, courtesy of Jipjorrulac, who pressed the button on the remote right then. "I wasn't finished!" Gripullon yelled.

The Eliminators started to close in around them as they were backed up against the wall. "But I think we are!" Jipjorrulac yelled in return.

"Well then, let me protect you, my sweet!" Gripullon said, only for him to hold Jipjorrulac in front of him. The Eliminators soon unleashed their vortexes, quickly sucking in the King and Queen.

Just then, the Lead Eliminator burst in through the wall. "He will not escape us this time." He walked toward the boxes of Fake-i-Fiers, and picked one of them up. "Because this time, he'll come right to us."

The roof of the capitol was torn off, as the Darkness was right above it. All of the boxes, including the one the Lead Eliminator was holding were sucked into the Darkness.

"And now, he won't be the only one we'll eliminate." The Lead Eliminator added. He and the other two Eliminators flew up into the Darkness as it consumed Yugopatamia.

The only thing they didn't account for at that moment was Mark flying away in the escape pod, en route to Earth. "Can like, anybody save us?" Mark asked to nobody in particular.

So, the Darkness was back, despite contrary beliefs... 

Chapter Text

Today would be an exciting day for Steven Universe. Why? Well, today was finally his birthday. One that he had long awaited for many months.

Steven and the Gems (minus Peridot) were out in front of the barn, all standing around a table. Garnet was busy with writing out "STEVEN" in yellow letters on a pink banner, on which Steven was holding one end of, and Pearl was tying the other end into a complicated knot. Amethyst was watching while holding several balloons, one of which had a crudely drawn version of Steven's face on it while the others were generic "happy birthday" balloons.

"I can't believe today's finally my birthday!" Steven said cheerily. "You're sure it's okay we're taking a break from the drill?" Even though it was his birthday, that didn't mean they had to stop working unless they actually had time.

"Peridot will keep us on schedule." Pearl confirmed. Indirectly proving her point, Peridot happened to walk out of the barn holding a lot of supplies.

"Yo Peri!" Amethyst said, getting the green gem's attention. Peridot stopped to look at Amethyst. "You sure you don't want to get in on this?" Amethyst blew up a small balloon that had a badly drawn version of Peridot's face on it, and continued to blow it up until it popped.

Amethyst smiled, gauging Peridot's reaction. Peridot simply put on some goggles and walked off to work on the drill.

"We should celebrate our progress." Garnet said. She turned to Steven. "We should celebrate your progress. You've grown a lot this year." She set her hand on Steven's head for a moment before taking it off.

"He certainly has." Pearl agreed with a smile.

"Yeah…" Steven said half-heartedly. "Yeah, I guess so!"

Just then, the sound of a horn went off as a van, namely the van belonging to Steven's dad, Greg Universe, stopped in front of the barn. A door opened, and Steven's friend Connie Maheswaran stepped out, wearing a red dress and a sombrero. She grabbed a briefcase before turning to face Steven. "Steven!" Connie said.

"Connie!" Steven exclaimed in excitement. The two ran toward each other, as Connie let go of her briefcase and pulled Steven into a brief hug.

"Happy birthday!" Connie said as she pulled away from the hug.

"Thanks! Welcome to the party." Steven said. "May I offer you… a refreshment?" He asked as he pulled two juice boxes from his back pockets.

"Oh, Steven, how gentile." Connie said overdramatically. At this, the two of them pretended to clink their juice boxes together.

"So, this is the barn." Steven said, gesturing to the barn. "I'm surprised your parents are letting you stay for my birthday."

Connie laughed a little. "It wasn't easy. They only let me come after equipping me with every piece of safety gear on the planet."

At the same time, Greg had been trying to get stuff out of the back of the van. "What should I do with this defibrillator?" He asked, calling out to the two kids as he pulled out said item.

"Um, we can just leave it in the car for now!" Connie yelled to Greg, blushing a tiny bit about how much her parents required her to bring.

"Well, I'm glad you could make it." Steven said.

"Me too." Connie agreed. The two began walking back to the barn, but not before Greg ran up and interrupted them.

"Alright, move it Connie, I was his best friend first." Greg said, putting a hand on Steven's shoulder. He picked up Steven and hugged him. "Happy birthday!" He set Steven down. "Okay, schtoo-ball, let me get a good look at ya."

"Dad…" Steven said, a little embarrassed.

"Sorry, I just can't believe my little boy's growing up so quickly." Greg apologized. "It seems like just yesterday you were a baby and now you're turning 14 years old."

Surprised at this, Connie accidentally let go of her juice box, letting it fall to the ground. "Steven, you're 14?" She questioned.

"Yeah…" Steven answered.

"But I'm only 12 and 3 quarters." Connie said. "You're older than me? I don't believe it!"

"Well sure, check it out." Greg said, grabbing a book that catalogued every birthday Steven's had, and opened it to the first page, which showed Steven's first birthday. "Infant." The next page was his second birthday. "Baby." Next, his third. "Toddler." Greg skipped several pages to when Steven was 8. "What's it called; adolescent." Ninth birthday. "Adolescent." Eleventh. "Adolescent." Thirteenth. "Adolescent."

There was a small pause. "Whoa, it looks like you stagnated a little there, buddy." Greg commented.

"Mr. Universe, could I show you how the defibrillator works?" Connie asked.

"Oh, uh, sure." Greg said, closing the book. "Be right back, kiddo." He said to Steven. Steven looked down, seeing the lone juice box that Connie had dropped.

Greg and Connie walked over to the back of the van and sat down. "So he's not going to grow up." Connie said, almost like that was what would definitively happen.

"Well, it's hard to say." Greg responded, rubbing the back of his neck for a moment. "He's a Gem, and Gems don't really grow up. I mean, I've known the Gems since I was 22 and they never changed. They just are what they are."

Unknown to the two of them, Steven was secretly listening in on what they were saying. "But Steven's not like the other Gems." Greg continued. "He's half human. So, I'm not really sure how he's gonna age. We're just gonna have to wait and see."

"…Yes, right." Connie responded after a moment.

"Are you okay?" Greg asked.


Greg smiled and put up a hand for a high-five. "Human beings?"

Connie also smiled as she accepted the high-five. "Human beings."

A little while later, the Gems, Steven, Connie, and Greg continued setup of Steven's birthday. Steven held up the pink banner from earlier and tried to hang it up over the barn doors, but found that he was much too short to do so, even when he tried to jump and throw it up there.

"Hey birthday man!" Amethyst said, walking over to him "Whatcha doing?"

"I wanna hang up this banner so-" Steven started to explain before Amethyst took the banner.

"Dude, it'd be easier if you just stretched on up here, like this!" Amethyst said, shapeshifting her arms and legs to be longer so she could put the banner up. "How's that?"

"Oh yeah…" Steven said, internally thinking of an idea he had.

"Come on, what's the verdict?" Amethyst asked. "I can't hold this form forever."

"Oh, uh, looks great." Steven answered, giving a thumbs up.

As Amethyst shapeshifted back to normal and walked away, Greg walked up to Steven, holding the cape and birthday crown that Steven had worn on every previous birthday. "There's my b-day guy!" Greg said.

"Oh, what's up dad?" Steven asked, turning to face Greg.

"We're almost ready to start!" Greg said, excited. "Got your birthday cape and crown ready too!" He handed them to Steven and started to walk him to the barn. "Here, go put them on and wait in the barn." Steven was in the barn. "Ok, sit tight now, you're going to love this." Greg closed the door, leaving Steven in the barn by himself.

After a moment, Steven tossed away the birthday cape and crown. He had stagnated in his physical growth ever since he was eight. What if that stayed for the rest of his life? All of his human friends would grow up around him while he still looked the same as always. He needed to change that, and fast.

But how? Ever since the incident around a year ago where his age kept fluctuating due to his gem reacting to his emotions, he had stayed the same. How would he be able to change? Maybe… shapeshifting to look older? Yeah, that would work. There weren't any consequences to it, right?

Well, only there was one way to find out.


Wake up.

Mario's group soon woke up in Flipside at the blaring sound of the alarm going off. Though they only got a couple hours of sleep, that was the maximum they could safely get… at least they hoped.

"Is everyone ready?" Mario asked as they went up the elevator. Everyone else agreed. And so, as soon as they were on the top floor, they walked to the green door, and went in it.

Through the fierce battle against Francis, Tippi and the Mario gang grew closer.

Behind a fourth door lay a whole new world that beckoned to them.

What awaited was vaster and stranger than anything they'd encountered so far.

In order to claim the Pure Heart, they would have to endure new, far-out trials…

The green door opened, and the group walked through into the unknown. It was… vast, a mixture a black and blue with white dots everywhere.

"Mmm, stars everywhere…" Tippi commented. "I believe we're in outer space, almost certainly…"

Violet tried to say something, only to realize that she couldn't. She couldn't breathe at all. Oh yeah. Space. No wonder none of them could breath, except Tippi, since she didn't need to.

"Ah… Oh, of course…" Tippi said. "There's not any air… You need that, don't you?"

Bowser tried to say something, probably explicitives, but couldn't. He clasped his hands to his mouth to try and not let any more air out.

"Oh… Oh, gracious me… What am I to do?" Tippi wondered, worried for the immediate safety of her friends. "Um…" The door was gone, so they couldn't go back. "Well…" She was unable to use the Return Pipe, and the others were freaking out too much to think about using it. "Let me see…"

Tippi panicked and stumbled over her words as she realized it. Her friends were going to die out here. They would run out of air quick. They were already being exposed to whatever dimensional version of space this was. "NOOOO!" Tippi cried out.

Then, it happened. By some miracle, they were forcefully ejected from the dimension. They… were safe. Back in Flipside. But Tippi was the only one awake. Just… how was she able to do that? She didn't know.

"Hey… Please, wake up…" Tippi pleaded to the 5 lying on the ground, asleep. They woke up, one by one. First was Junior, who shivered upon standing up. Next was Mario, who practically shot up in a panic upon waking up, but then calmed down upon realizing that everyone was safe. Peach and Violet woke up around the same time. Bowser was the last one, and was surprised at what just happened.

"What just happened?" Junior asked in confusion. "Were we… in space?"

"Yes… All of you are all right, aren't you?" Tippi asked.

"Yeah, we're alright." Peach answered. "I think…" Hopefully there were no lasting effects to being in space that long… at least in that dimension.

"Oh, thank goodness…" Tippi said. "I don't really know how I got us all out of there… It just sort of happened…"

"Well, we probably shouldn't chance it and go back in." Mario said. "Maybe we should go back to Merlon and see what he says."

The rest of the group agreed. It didn't take long for them to go down the elevator and to Merlon's place, considering they were all shaken up by what happened. They opened the door and went inside.

"Oh ho!" Merlon laughed heartily upon their arrival. "That was certainly quick work… You've already found the next Pure Heart?"

"No, Merlon…" Tippi corrected. "That door led us straight into outer space…"

Merlon was shocked. "Space? Oh ho, I imagine THAT was an unwelcome surprise!"

Bowser crossed his arms and huffed. "Yeah, it was unwelcome alright. All of us nearly died because we couldn't breathe."

"Hm…" Merlon thought up of a solution. "Well, if you had some space helmets, you would be all right, I imagine…"

"Do you have at least five?" Violet asked.

Merlon perked up. "Of course, I don't have any! But I imagine that even something LIKE a space helmet would suffice…" Merlon walked to his various shelves. "And I just so happen to…" He searched through them for a couple moments. "Oh, blast it!"

"What now…" Tippi asked, a little afraid.

"Oh, double blast it all!" Merlon said. "I cleaned out my shelves the other day… Yes, I HAD the perfect things, all five of them, but I was making space, and I gave them to some people in town!"

"To who?" Tippi asked.

"Well, one of them was some random boy… It seemed more convenient than recycling it…" Merlon remembered. "I sold another to the shop… And I let someone else on the floor below borrow it. I still have two, but you must find where the other three are and explain the situation! Get those helmets back!"

The group went out of the house and spilt up into three groups. Junior would try and find the boy, Mario, Tippi, and Violet would go to the shop, and Peach and Bowser would go to the lower floor.

Junior wandered around Flipside, searching for a boy with a space helmet. He decided to start his search on the third floor. And he was thankful he did, because he saw a kid about a year younger than him standing next to a bowl full of water with a fish in it.

Junior walked up to the boy and politely tapped his shoulder. "Excuse me?" Junior asked, getting the boy's attention. "Did Merlon give you that helmet?"

"This?" The boy asked. Junior nodded. "You means this fishbowl? Yeah, I kepted Captain Gills here in a cup, but then he gots too big for it. Yeah, that's why I gots real happy when I gots this fishbowl! Thing is, now the captain gots so big, the BOWL gots too small for him!" The boy then realized something. "Hey, I know! Maybe you could find a nice place to sets Captain Gills free for me! Captain deserves freedom! Then you gets the fishbowl. That's good, huh?"

"Okay, I can do that." Junior said.

"Hmm… But where can he go…" The boy pondered. "I wanna knows that he'll be nearby at all times… You gots to help me!"

The boy handed the fishbowl to Junior, who accepted it. Where would there be somewhere he could release the fish? Hm… maybe on a lower floor? Junior carried the fishbowl to the elevator and went down. When he got down to the second floor, he again made his way to the next elevator, right by the store where Mario, Tippi, and Violet were at.

Inside the store, the three were looking for the helmet that the store had bought a while ago. So far, they had no luck.

"Excuse me." Violet said, walking up to the shopkeeper. "Do you have any helmets in stock?"

"Yes, we do!" The shopkeeper answered. "In fact, we have just one left!"

"Great, how much is it?" Violet asked.

"Around 50 coins."

Violet paused. That was a bit expensive. But she paid anyway, and the shopkeeper gave her the helmet. Now with the bowl, she walked over to Mario and Tippi. "I got the helmet." Violet explained.

"Alright, now let's wait for the others to get their helmets." Mario said.

As Junior carried the fishbowl that would soon become the helmet as soon as he could find a water source to dump the fish and water into, he walked past the house that Peach and Bowser were in. In the house, the two were trying to get a guy to give up his helmet.

"Please, we really need the helmet." Peach pleaded for what felt like the thousandth time. "Merlon told us to get it, and it's very important that we have it."

"Just get another one!" The guy said with a huff. "I already told you! I'm. Not. Going. To. Give. Up. My. Precious. Item!"

Bowser crossed his arms. "I'm getting really annoyed by this. Stop making up excuses and just give us the stupid helmet!"

"No! It's mine! That's the last time I'll say it!" The guy yelled.

"Look." Peach started, a lot more stern. "Everything could literally be destroyed because we didn't have enough helmets to go into space because you decided you were too selfish to give us a helmet."

The guy thought for a moment, and then realized his mistake. "Alright, I'll give you the helmet." He gave Peach the helmet. "I'm sorry, I've just been a bit depressed because my girl left me a while ago, and I haven't had much to do or think about."

"It's alright." Peach said. "And thanks for the helmet."

Junior finally got down to the lower floor, where there was a pool of water. He dumped the contents of the bowl into the water. Now that it was empty, he could use it as one of the space helmets. He looked down into the water. Funny, how it reminded him of-

Wait. Don't think about it. Move past it. Forget about it.

Junior took in a deep breath. Shouldn't he already be past that? What happened has happened. It's over with now. He quickly clicked the elevator button and went back up a floor.

The entire group was back at the green door, now having all 5 helmets. Now, they would finally be able to through space and get the fifth Pure Heart.

"Before we go in, everyone please put on their helmets…" Tippi reminded as they were at the door. "I don't want a repeat of what happened earlier…"

Everyone put on their helmets, thankfully all of them being the appropriate sizes. And once again, they went through the door, now having a better idea of what to expect.

Even though they were in an alternate dimension, space was regularly known to be vast and wide. And this was no different. Who knows how far away the Pure Heart could be? Thankfully, before long, they found something. An SOS signal emanating from… somewhere. They decided to follow it.

Soon, they found the source. But it was a little perplexing. It was coming from… nowhere? Just a random point in space? Tippi used her special power just in case, and everyone was glad she did.

"Mmm, is this a spaceship? Looks rather like it…" Tippi said. The spaceship in front of them wasn't too big. There was a small hatch on it that could be opened, and it looked grey with some green textures all over it.

Out of nowhere, the spaceship shook. The group got prepared for whatever would come out of it. The hatch opened… and there was a small alien inside, about the size of Junior. The alien was green, and had several tentacles. Its body was square, and on its head was a yellow star.

The alien yawned, before floating out of the ship and up to the group. "'Morning, SQUIRP!" The alien greeted.

"Um… just who are you?" Peach asked. "An alien?"

"You're the ones looking for the Pure Heart. squirple?" The alien asked. "Hm! Cuter than I thought!"

"Wait a minute." Mario realized. "How do you know about the Pure Heart? And about us? Are you in cahoots with Count Bleck? Tell us. Now." He demanded.

"No! No scary faces! You can call me Squirps!" The alien, Squirps quickly explained. "I'm your captain, squooork! And if you want the Pure Heart, we need to work together, squoop!"

"I never agreed to this." Bowser commented.

"Whatever do you mean?" Tippi asked. "Please, explain yourself…"

"Squirps can't tell much now, but you must trust Squirps." Squirps explained. "Now, follow me, squiiiinks!"

"I don't think we'll be doing that." Violet said. "We've only just met and-"

"SQUACK!" Squirps yelled, catching everyone else off guard. "You! You heed the captain! You are space grunts now, and that is the ONLY rule! Your only responses should be 'Yes, sir!' and 'Gotcha!' Understand, squirkles?"

The rest of the group responded with either, "Yes, sir!" or "Gotcha!"

Squirps was pleased with this. "Looks like you understand your place, SQUIIIRP!"

"Are you… okay with this?" Tippi asked to her friends in concern.

"I'm fine with it." Junior answered. The other four seemed to be okay with it as well. At that, Tippi sighed.

"Great! Let's get ready, then…" Squirps said. "Squarp formation, squoogle!" He floated closer to Mario. "We'll 'squarp' directly to the Pure Heart. It's like warping, except Squirps invented it. In order to squarp, we'll need to a lot of energy, squeerk. You're all brimming with power-up power, right? You must give it to Squirps!"

Mario held Squirps. What was he supposed to do? Wait… maybe try and transfer his flipping power, just like he unintentionally did with Peach a while back? It was worth a try. As he tried to do what he did before, an orange hue appeared around Squirps. It slowly got bigger as time passed, and then…

"SUCCESS!" Squirps yelled. In an instant, the energy that had been building up shot out, resulting in a large, purple wormhole appearing several feet away from them. "And here we go… SQUARP!"

Not really having much of a choice, the group floated closer to the wormhole, and got sucked in it, waiting for what might be on the other side… which was just more space. They were still in the middle of nowhere.

"Squoh?" Squirps asked in confusion. "We're…not even close to our destination, squoops…" He turned to face Mario. "Is that all the power-up power you have, squirp? Good-for-nothing space grunt… Squirps was an idiot for thinking you had more…"

Mario raised an eyebrow. "Excuse me?"

"Well, good-for-nothings have their own good-for-nothing ways of moving, squaaank…" Squirps continued. "There's a ways to go before you reach the Pure Heart… You must space-swim! You can shoot enemies with my Squirps Squirt Beam. SQUIRP! Fire, space grunt! CHARGE!"

And so, with the new addition to Mario's team, Squirps, hopefully they would reach the Pure Heart in a considerable amount of time.

"He was just a normal gorgeous earth boy with tight glutes," The announcer on TV began.

Timmy, Cosmo, Wanda and Poof were at a hotel in Fairy World, currently watching a trailer for a movie, which retold the events of what happened over the last couple days.

On the TV, a tall, buff actor looked to play the role of Timmy, also with a fairy crown and wings and flaming fists, and beside him stood another actor with a costume on, resembling Junior. Around them stood a circle of actors that wore Eliminator costumes. The scene was a desert.

"Chevy Ferybucker and Rolando Armstrong are Timmy Turner and Junior Koopa respectively in: 'The Chosen One and his sidekick: Ninjas!'" The TV announcer continued. Chevy and Rolando suddenly had ninja outfits added to their costumes, and they dove into the a couple of the Eliminators, going off-screen as the other Eliminators dove for them.

Cosmo and Timmy were in a bubble bath hot tub only wearing their underwear, while Wanda was giving Poof his bottle. "Cool!" Cosmo cheered. "Fairy World adapted Timmy's life story for the big screen!"

"But when did you and Junior become ninjas?" Wanda questioned.

"Well, I might've tweaked the script a little." Timmy admitted in response.

Poof perked up when he saw the actions taking place on the TV. He stopped drinking out of his bottle and giggled, while Wanda smiled. On the TV, while Rolando continued fighting Eliminators, Chevy walked up to the actor named Cassandra, who was playing Trixie Tang, and kissed her on the lips.

"Hungry?" Chevy asked to the Eliminators as he literally threw Cassandra aside. "How about… a fillet… of fist?" Timmy imitated what he said.

Poof floated in front of the TV and began to imitate the actions that Chevy and Rolando were doing, starting with their fists up in the air, a punch, an upside down kick, and he was about to do another, but Wanda poofed to him with the TV remote and turned off the TV.

"Poof shouldn't be watching this!" Wanda scolded as she held the baby. "The violence could negatively influence him."

"Oh relax Wanda, that's just a myth." Cosmo said as he and Timmy jumped up and down in the hot tub. Though, Poof proved him wrong, as the baby decided to kick Wanda right into Cosmo, causing them both to fall into the hot tub.

A couple seconds later, Timmy jumped out of the hot tub and landed next to a telephone, where he proceeded to pick it up and place an order. "Yeah, this is the Chosen One, in the chosen one suite." Timmy began, seeing Cosmo and Wanda come up out of the hot tub while Poof flew around the room in a kicking motion.

"Can I get four strawberry shakes, six double cheese pizzas, extra towels, and anyone else want something?" Timmy asked, lowering the phone while saying the last part.

"Nine pounds of cocktail weenies!" Cosmo answered, jumping up and down.

"And nine pounds of cocktail weenies." Timmy added. In an instant after he hung up the phone, all of the items he ordered appeared in front of him on a wheeling tray; the pizza on the bottom rack, while the cocktail weenies, strawberry shakes, and towels were on the top rack.

There was also a fairy employee who needed Timmy to sign for it, and once he did, the fairy squealed in excitement. "I love you Chosen One!" The fairy poofed away.

Timmy walked up and was about to grab one of the shakes when Cosmo suddenly poofed in front of him, angry. "Don't touch my weenies!" Cosmo yelled. "Hey, that could be my new catchphrase!" Timmy then grabbed the shake he was going to get and started drinking it with a straw.

Wanda floated up to Timmy. "Don't you think it's time to wrap up the Chosen One thing and oh, I don't know, get back to Earth and school and be good ol' regular Timmy Turner again?" She asked, hopeful that Timmy would say yes.

"Yeeeeaa-no." Timmy ultimately decided.

Cosmo grabbed a fork and used it to pick up one of the weenies he requested. He was about to eat the weenie when Poof suddenly attacked him, knocking Cosmo backward. Poof vomited out purple stuff, and then spun the nunchucks.

"That's it!" Wanda yelled as she grabbed Poof, as the baby accidentally dropped the nunchucks. "No more action movies for Poof!" Poof retaliated by kicking Wanda away, causing her to crash into the wall.

Timmy walked to the phone again, still holding the shake. "Why would I go back home when I can do this?" Timmy picked up the phone. "Yeah, this is the Chosen One. Can I have a giant pile of wrapped presents sent up to the Chosen One Suite? And don't tell me what's in them. Surprise me."

As Timmy hung up the phone, a pile of wrapped presents nearly reaching the ceiling appeared in front of him. Timmy took the nearest present and opened it. "Roller skates?" Timmy questioned, looking at the roller skates in the box. "Well, I did say surprise me."

"But I bet your parents are worried sick about you!" Wanda argued. "Aren't they, Cosmo?"

Cosmo tried to respond, but couldn't because of the large amount of weenies he stuck in his mouth, trying to eat them all at once, so he just spoke gibberish.

"And what's that Cosmo?" Wanda asked, pretending that Cosmo had actually said something. "We should poof Timmy back home before he wishes us not to? Okay!"

"Uh-" Timmy tried to say, but was interrupted as Wanda poofed him, herself, Cosmo, and Poof all back in Timmy's room, all wearing their normal clothes.

Chapter Text

Greg knocked on the large barn doors after around a minute had passed. "Okay Steven, open up!" He yelled.

Greg ran back to where the Gems and Connie were, several feet away from the barn. Garnet held a Cookie Cat shaped cake that had two candles with the number 14 on it.

The barn door opened. "Supri-" They all started, but interrupted themselves by gasping when they saw Steven.

"Wow." Amethyst commented.

"Oh my…" Pearl said in shock.

"Huh?" Greg asked.

Connie's eyes widened. In the time that Steven had gone into the barn, stayed in there for around a minute, and opened the door, he had grown around a foot. His arms and legs were taller, making his shorts and shirt a little too small for him, making his pink gem stick out. As Steven carefully walked forward, the others quickly walked to him.

"Steven, are you feeling okay?" Pearl asked.

"Huh. You look good, Steven." Garnet complimented.

"Oh, thanks Garnet." Steven's voice was a little deeper. He laughed nervously.

"Dude, your neck!" Amethyst pointed out.

"Oh, uh, what about it?" Steven asked.

"You have one!"

Connie raised an eyebrow. "So… you just grew all of a sudden?" She walked closer to Steven.

"I had a magical growth spurt just now." Steven explained. "Pretty cool, right?"

"Oh, right, it's totally cool!" Connie responded.

"Alright then, let's get this party started." Garnet stated. She blew out the two candles.

"Yeah! Let's eat this cookie cake!" Greg cheered.

A little later, Connie and Steven sat on a picnic blanket that's design was various shades of pink separated into diamonds. Lion slept next to the two as Connie gave Steven a gift box. "Here Steven." She said.

"Wow, thanks." Steven said, as he was about to unwrap the bow.

"Oh, you don't have to untie that." Connie said. "It's just a box made to look like I spent of time wrapping it." She giggled.

Steven opened the box, tossing the top aside where it landed on Lion, waking the large pet up. Steven reached inside the box. "Oh, a new shirt!" He said, holding the pink button-down shirt. "What a pretty color!"

"Try it on!" Connie suggested. Steven stood up and tried to put on the shirt, but couldn't button it at all, even after several tries. Connie frowned. "Oh, I guess it doesn't fit since-"

"Oh, don't worry. It fits fine just like this!" Steven reassured. He chuckled a little.

A little while later, Steven and Amethyst were playing badminton against Pearl and Connie. Steven hit the shuttlecock with the racquet, sending it to the other side of the net.

"Here it comes!" Pearl said.

"I got it, Pearl!" Connie said, running to the shuttlecock and hitting it back.

"Nice, Connie." Pearl commented.

Amethyst ran forward, gaining momentum before hitting the shuttlecock. She hit it so hard that it flew into a branch of a nearby tree.

"If you hit it, you get it." Pearl smirked in satisfaction.

"No worries, I'll get it." Connie said. She ran over to the tree, and jumped up several times trying to get the shuttlecock, but to no avail.

"Connie, let me." Steven said, walking over. He jumped up, grabbed the branch, and shook the shuttlecock off of it.

"Oh, cool." Connie said, running to pick up the shuttlecock. "Thanks, Steven."

Steven got off of the branch. "No problem, Connie." He smiled.

"Yo, bring back that shuttlecock!" Amethyst called out from the distance, causing Connie to run back to the court. Steven was about to follow, but he suddenly paused.

Steven cringed, and his right arm shrunk back to how it was before his 'magical growth spurt.' "Oh no!" Using his gem powers, he grew his arm back to how he wanted it. If he wanted to be able to grow like a normal human being, then he had to keep this up for as long as possible. Steven took in a deep breath as he went back to walk with the others.

Later, all of them were having a dance party. While Pearl and Amethyst danced to the current music, Greg and Garnet were picking out different tracks to play. Greg got out a record he liked, but Garnet shook her head at it. Connie and Steven also danced with each other.

Garnet grabbed a microphone and put in a record that played relaxing music. "This one goes out to the birthday boy and his friend." She announced. Steven and Connie looked at each other and giggled nervously. Then, they began dancing slowly to the rhythm of the music.

"I still can't believe all this time you were older than me." Connie said. "You should sneak me into a PG-13 movie sometime."

Steven was sweating as he laughed nervously. "Oh, yeah…"

Connie giggled. "I'm just kidding, I would never ask you to break the law. It's… funny that I have to look up at you now, though."

"Funny good or funny bad?" Steven quickly asked.

"Funny good." Connie responded as she stopped. Pearl and Garnet had been watching the two dance.

"Aw, Steven's having fun." Pearl commented.

"We know how to throw a party." Garnet added.

Steven cleared his throat, getting Connie's attention. "Excuse me for a second Connie, I'm gonna go… freshen up. Be right back." Steven ran to the back of the barn, and after he quickly checked behind him to make sure no one was looking, he shapeshifted his body back to normal.

"Oh geez." Steven said, sweat pouring down his face. "If I can just keep this up for the rest of my life, no one will suspect a th-" He froze, upon realizing that Greg and Amethyst were in front of him, Greg holding a piñata and Amethyst about to hit it.

"What are you doing?" Amethyst questioned as Greg dropped the piñata in surprise.

"What are you doing?" Steven asked, shapeshifting to be taller again.

"What are you doing to your body?" Greg yelled.

"Whoa whoa whoa, have you been stretching yourself out all day?" Amethyst asked, highly concerned.

"No, I was just… slouching." Steven lied.

"Why are you doing this?" Greg asked. "This really isn't like you."

"Because, dad, I can't stay a kid forever!" Steven answered. "When Connie grows up and becomes president, what is that gonna make me? First boy?"

"Steven, you can't just keep stretching forever." Amethyst explained. "If you hold it too long, you could really hurt yourself."

"Yeah, well I'm half human, so maybe it works different for me!" Steven responded. "We'll just have to wait and see, right?"

"Steven…" Greg wanted to say something else, but Steven walked off before he could.

It was getting close to sunset, so Connie and Steven decided to sit down and go stargazing.

Connie pointed at a constellation. "That one's Cainus Helicoptorus." Though she did frown, upon seeing that the Big Dipper was nowhere to be found. Or maybe she was just misremembering where the constellations were.

"H-H-Helicoptorus?" Steven asked. His right eye twitched as his mouth wore a nervous grin.

"Yeah, Dogcopter, get it?" Connie reminded, playfully elbowing Steven's arm. "Now you make one up."

"Ok, um…" Steven nervously cleared his throat. He looked at the sky. "That one's a… snake constellation."

"That's… pretty good." Connie frowned. "Are you okay?" She noticed how his eye twitched. "It looks like you're gonna throw up."

"No, e-everything's fine." Steven answered.

"That's good." Connie smiled. "You know, to be honest, I was a little worried before. This might sound silly, but… I'm really glad that I'm gonna get to grow up with you."

At that statement, Steven's gem started glowing as somehow, he started shrinking into his clothes. "Steven?" Connie questioned. She started to move the clothes, but then she saw… Steven as a baby, his head peeking out from the shirt. "Steven? What's going on, what happened?"

Steven, upon realizing that he had reverted to a baby, began crying.

Connie was now holding Steven in front of Greg and the Gems. Steven had his shirt on, which was obviously too big for him. He was still crying.

"We were just talking, and then all of a sudden…" Connie explained.

"He turned back into a baby?" Pearl questioned.

"Yes!" Connie answered.

"Dude, I told you." Amethyst said. "Stretching your body out for that long is not good for you!" She took Steven. Steven tried to say something, but couldn't because of his current condition. Amethyst tried to give Steven to Pearl. "Here you go, Pearl."

"Oh no, don't give him to me!" Pearl quickly said.

"Hand him over, Amethyst." Garnet said. Amethyst gave Steven to her. Garnet removed her visor. She opened each of her eyes one at a time, smiled, and stuck out her tongue in an attempt to get Steven to laugh. Steven began crying. "My power means nothing to an infant."

"Ok, this is my department." Greg said, taking Steven.

"What are you gonna do?" Connie asked.

"Don't worry, I got this." Greg said.

Greg was driving in his van as Connie sat next to him. Steven was in the back, sitting in a booster seat that Amethyst had shapeshifted into.

"How can the gems not know what to do?" Connie asked, trying to calm Steven down by shaking a maraca in front of him.

"You think they knew the first thing about raising a baby?" Greg asked. "That was all me. But I don't get it. Driving always used to calm him down."

"But how do we change him back?" Connie desperately asked.

"I don't know." Greg answered honestly. "Look, Connie, let me take you home. I'll call you when this all gets sorted out."

Connie took a look at Steven, and noted how distressed he looked. "Wait, no, I wanna stay."

"Are you sure?" Greg asked.

"Yeah. I just wanna be there for Steven." Connie answered. She turned to face Steven. "Don't worry, Steven, it doesn't matter to me what age it seems like you are. I wanna hang out with you no matter what. Your dad still has to run his car wash, and the gems have to do gem stuff, so I'll watch you when they're not around. I can come see you after I'm done training with Pearl, too." She extended her finger out to Steven. "Doesn't that sound fun?" Steven happily grabbed her finger.

"Look at that, he finally stopped crying." Greg said.

"Well that's a start." Connie responded.

Amethyst cleared her throat.

"What's up Amethyst?" Greg asked.

"Baby Steven needs changing."

The sun had fully set. Greg had taken them back to the barn, where Connie and Steven could get some rest. Connie had set up a tent, and she and Steven lied down together. Connie decided to shut her eyes for a couple minutes. When she opened them, she saw Steven's shirt, and no one occupying it.

"Oh my gosh, did he get even smaller?" She nervously asked, picking up the shirt. She panicked. "Steven's microscopic! He's reverted back to a zygote!" She ran out of the tent. "Everyone! Steven is-"

She stopped. She saw Steven back to how he was normally supposed to be, but he was wearing the shirt Connie got him. "Look. It fits now." He said.

Tears were in Connie's eyes. "You're back to normal!" She wiped the tears away. She ran up and gave Steven a hug.

"Sorry that today was a disaster." Steven apologized. "I wanted to look older for you."

"That doesn't matter."

"I… heard what you said in the van. It's really okay if I don't age like a human?"

"Of course it is! I like you just the way you are!" Connie noticed something on Steven's face. "Steven, you've got something on your cheek."

"Huh?" Steven asked. He felt his cheek, and immediately realized what it was. "It's a facial hair!"

"Really?" Connie asked. At that moment, Greg was walking toward them.

"Dad!" Steven yelled, running over to Greg.

"What is it, little man?" Greg asked. Steven pointed to his facial hair and smiled. "Holy smokes, you're growing a beard!" Greg hugged Steven. "You really are getting older! Everybody, look at this!" Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl walked over, and Steven showed off his facial hair.

"Unbelievable." Pearl said.

"Very impressive." Garnet added.

"Is there more where that came from?" Amethyst joked, causing them all to laugh.

Mario and the gang cruised through space, led by the young alien named Squirps.

What kind of creature was it, anyway? And what was with those weird noises?

Whenever confronted with a question, it would say, "Squirps is Squirps, SQUAAK!"

All they could do was trust that he knew where the Pure Heart was and follow him.

They were doing just that when something appeared ahead of them.

It was a teeny-tiny planet.

After nearly getting lost several times while traveling through wormholes, Mario's team, now including Squirps, made it to a small planet. Surprisingly, the planet had a breathable atmosphere, so after they landed, they took off their helmets for the time being.

"This planet really seems… on the small side…" Tippi commented. "Just where do you intend to take us?" She asked, referring to Squirps.

"Somewhere on this planet should be an entrance to the Space Byway, squeeork!" Squirps answered. "Yup! It's a shortcut to the Pure Heart!"

"If this a shortcut, then where's the entrance?" Mario asked, a little skeptical.

Squirps laughed a little. "You're gonna laugh, squaag! It's… Squirps forgot!"

"…Really?" Bowser questioned. "We come all this way and you forget!?" Him and the rest of the group were angry at Squirps for his incompetence.

"Don't look at Squirps like that!" Squirps defended. "Everything's fine! I think there probably should be some clues around here somewhere, squirple…"

"What a wretch…" Tippi said. After she said that, Squirps's eyes suddenly widened and he made a noise. "What is it? Did you remember something?" Tippi quickly asked.

"No! I… I have to go potty!" Squirps answered. "I really have to go, Squirk! I can't hold it anymore!" He rushed off to try and find the nearest bathroom.

"Maybe we should look for some clues ourselves…" Peach suggested. The rest of the group unanimously agreed. They set off to explore the planet, which was called Planet Blobule. Not even a couple minutes into exploring, they found Squirps anxiously waiting outside of a lone stall that was currently occupied. Upon walking closer, they heard singing coming from inside the stall.

"Here I sit, amore! Awaiting you amore! No more, no more, amore!"The person inside the stall sang.

"This is no time for some silly song, squirple! I've got a bathroom emergency here!" Squirps yelled.

"100 years ago, amore! I came in here to go, amore! So bored, so bored!" The singing continued. "No toilet paper here, amore! I wait 100 years, amore! What for, what for, amore? Any paper, please, amore? Just a sheet for me, amore! Implore, implore, amore!"

So, the group left and decided to explore the rest of the planet. Due to the lowered gravity of the planet, they could jump a lot higher. Not too long into exploring, they found something strange. There was a small pedestal on a raised part of the ground, and above it was… it was very hard to explain. The best way to explain it was that it was a… tear above them? A visible tear, or rip… just floating right above them. A rip in the sky? It didn't make sense, but since it wasn't doing anything, they just moved on past it.

They came across a door with a lock on it. They moved past it. A little later, they came across another door with blocks obstructing it that could thankfully be blown up by Boomer. Going through the door took them to another part of the planet. Not too long later, they came across another door, though it was different from the other ones in the fact that it was larger and high-tech looking.

They went through the door, and found themselves in a small room under the planet, occupied by one of the planet's inhabitants.

"Bloog… Aren't you fancy." The inhabitant, Blollop said. "Let me guess… You're hunting the treasure too, right? Well, go look for the elder. He knows stuff about things. Me, I plan on lounging…"

The group exited the room and resumed exploring. After going to another part of the planet, they came across another door that led to another inhabitant's house.

"Ooog… A customer… Rare." The inhabitant said. "Look, why not take a load off? Moving is…tiring. Whuzzat? Space Byway? Oog… Haven't seen one… Haven't eaten on either… Where to in such a hurry? Space is endless… Ooog… You oughta take your time…"

The group simply moved on, continuing to explore. After a little while, they came across another one of those doors that led to an inhabitant's house. This house belonged to the elder.

"Greetings, young explorers… Welcome to this remote land. You must be bushed, blooog." The elder said. "I'm what's known as an active senior explorer. The name's Blappy. I'm 72. In my youth, while everyone hunted for snacks, I hunted the Big Treasure of Space. It's big. It's treasure. And it will be mine at last! I found a clue in the space ruins! So, explorer to explorers… I'll cut you a deal, blooog… This clue for 1,000 coins! YOU BUY IT!"

"I don't think we have that kind of money." Junior said.

"Yeah, that's way too expensive." Violet agreed.

"What? Too expensive?" The elder questioned. "Well, maybe a little, bloog…" The elder coughed a couple times. "Sorry, I've got a touch of lard-lung. Anyway, I'll cut you a deal: how's 100 coins?"

"That's a bit shady…" Mario pointed out. "If you have the clue, then why aren't you looking for the treasure?"

"What? Wondering why I'm not looking for the treasure myself?" The elder asked. "I'm old! I'm portly! And I did look, blooog! I just didn't find anything…" The elder coughed a couple more times. "Uh, I mean, fine. 10 coins."

Mario handed the elder 10 coins. In return, he got the Ancient Clue. Written on it was, "By rock man's noggin, when outer space is reversed, the door secret hides."

"I'm through with you, bloog… Go home now!" The elder yelled.

Mario's group went all the way back to where Squirps was, now that they had something that could be used as toilet paper. Thankfully, Squirps didn't have an accident yet. The person in the stall kept singing, but Mario pushed the Ancient Scroll under the door. The singing stopped for a moment.

The singing then resumed. "Fleep has a-waited for you! At last we meet, mi amore! My sweet, sweet, paper! And now we do part, amore! For down you depart, amore! No more, no more, amore!"

"Sq-Squirps can't take it anymore! Squirps will burst!" Squirps yelled. "Evacuate all personnel!" The person in the bathroom went out at the same second Squirps rushed in. The person in the bathroom actually happened to be a pixl, named Fleep. Fleep looked like a blue rectangle, with two wings; one on each side, and at the bottom there was what looked like what would be at the bottom of a window blind to pull it up or down.

"Relief!" Fleep said cheerily. "Eeet's a paper miracle! Fleep is a-feeling good! You bring Fleep the happy? Fleep has been a-waiting so long for you, amore! Si, for this momento! We Pixls are helpful tools, si? But we no choose masters, be they good or bad! Still, Fleep has the passion to be used for something, so… Fleep waited here, amore! And you found Fleep, amore! Oh, thank you deep, amore! From this momento, you and Fleep are as one! We shall never part! Fleep follows you, more! Companion true, amore!"

Fleep joined the group. A couple seconds later, Squirps exited the bathroom. "Phew… Squirps needed that." Squirps said. "OK! Let's go look for the entry to the Space Bypass, squibble!"

Now that they had Fleep, the group was able to use him to see what was behind that strange rift from earlier. Behind it was a key. It fit in the door. Behind that door was the secret pathway to the Space Bypass. The group was relieved as this, as they continued through space…

The second that Timmy was poofed back into his room, he became very annoyed due to the fact that he was just taken away from all his fame and glory. "That was so uncool." He said, referring to Wanda.

"Weenies! Weenies!" Cosmo cried out, realizing that none of his weenies were taken with him. "Wherefore art thou, weenies?" As if in response, Poof kicked Cosmo toward the wall, sending Cosmo halfway through it.

A second later, there was a knock on the door. "Timmy! Are you home?" That was Timmy's dad, Terrance, presumably accompanied by Tamara.

"See, I told you your parents missed you and are worried sick!" Wanda said, the knocking proving her point.

Timmy pondered on this. It has been several days since he lived a normal life… well, as normal as it could get for him. "Okay, maybe you're right." Maybe things could go back to normal. As Timmy's fairies went into the fishbowl on Timmy's dresser, Terrance and Tamara opened the door.

"Hey, Timmy!" Terrance greeted. He took a quick glance at Timmy's fish bowl, and then back to his son. "So, um… How've you been these last several days?"

"Did you manage to take care of yourselves while…" Tamara started before Timmy could answer Terrance's question. "While we went to a ski trip… even though Vicky… was sick?" Her eye nearly twitched at having to say the word "Vicky."

"I just stayed at a friend's house." Timmy lied. Lie after lie. It kept on building up into an imaginary mountain that would inevitably crumble down and have an avalanche at some point, but he would cross that bridge when he came to it.

"Well…" Terrance said. "We were going to bring you… but we forgot. Big time."

At that, Timmy glared at Wanda, not even considering the huge glaring hole in his parents' story. Wanda returned with a sheepish smile. "It's alright, I'm the Chosen One." Timmy said, confident of himself.

Terrance and Tamara eyed each other for a moment. "Great!" They both said.

"We were actually planning on going on a tropical vacation!" Tamara explained. "And this time, you're coming with us!"

"We'll be in the car, don't wait up!" Terrance quickly said. He and Tamara rushed downstairs.

Timmy's fairies poofed out of the fishbowl. "Ooh, a vacation with your parents!" Wanda said, excited. "A perfect opportunity to reconnect with your parents and Earth!"

"Three, two, one." Timmy counted down, as if he knew what was going to happen. A couple seconds later, they all heard the screeching of tires outside as the family car left the house.

"Timmy was right, you were wrong, and I want my weenies back!" Cosmo yelled.

"And I want all the other stuff!" Timmy added.

"Fine." Wanda said begrudgingly as she waved her wand and poofed in all the stuff Timmy had ordered at the hotel in Fairy World.

Cosmo floated up to the giant box of weenies sitting at the top of the huge pile, one that nearly reached the ceiling. He grabbed a weenie. "Must. Eliminate. Weenie." He said, imitating an Eliminator. Before he could even take a bite, Poof once again kicked Cosmo, sending him flying toward the wall. Poof then did a couple more moves before diving into the box of weenies, and coming out with several of them stuffed in his mouth.

Timmy grabbed one of the strawberry shakes and walked over to Wanda. "And now it's time to get back to Fairy World." He took a sip of his drink.

"Timmy, you realize that while you're just sitting there drinking that and getting all of your gifts, Mario and his friends are out there still risking their lives trying to stop the Void!" Wanda ranted.

"Look, Wanda, it's honestly not my problem." Timmy said. "I took care of the Darkness, and they're taking care of the Void. It just so happened that we got mixed up with each other."

Though, Wanda didn't think so. She had a sneaking suspicion that something bigger was at play. "Well, what if the Darkness does come back? And what if someone cries for help?" She questioned.

"Well, if someone does, then the Chosen One must heed that call." Timmy answered.

Cosmo got himself unstuck from the wall. "Um, I don't hear any one crying. Or crying for help."

But then, there was.

"Timmy Turner, like help!"

It came from outside. It sounded exactly like Mark Chang's voice.

Timmy, Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof poofed outside onto the front lawn. Mark was peeking out from a fence. "Timmy Turner! Hi." He made his way over to Timmy while he began explaining his situation. "My planet was like, attacked, by metal robot dudes, and eaten by a big swirling thing of gas!"

"So, the Darkness is back." Timmy said. "Well, I hope it wants a big fillet of-" Wait. The Darkness. "THE DARKNESS IS BACK!" Timmy freaked out and screaming, running to a tree and diving into the hole in the bark.

"Spoken like a true action hero." Wanda rolled her eyes.

Mark slithered over and got Timmy out of the tree. "But you are like, the Chosen One, and you must help me fight!" Mark explained. He grabbed Timmy.

Timmy laughed a little. "See technically I'm not the Chosen One, although they call me the Chosen One, it's actually incorrect, and how did you know I was the Chosen One, I never told you, and you're holding me kinda tight!"

"Because, I must… eliminate Timmy Turner." Mark's voice changed, like it was a deep, robotic echo of itself. A vortex appeared on 'Mark's' mouth.

"It's an Eliminator!" Cosmo and Wanda yelled, shortly after Timmy had already come to that conclusion.

"I wish the Mark Eliminator was gone!" Timmy yelled. Cosmo and Wanda tried to grant the wish, but the Mark Eliminator snatched their wands before they could, leaving nothing to stop the Mark Eliminator from capturing Timmy.

"Timmy! No!" Cosmo and Wanda yelled. The Mark Eliminator slowly brought Timmy closer to the vortex, ensuring his fate.

But then, something that could be described as a miracle happened.

Mark's escape pod crash-landed on the Mark Eliminator, effectively destroying it, creating a large crater on the walkway and grass. Timmy flew backwards, nearly hitting the fence, and the two wands bounced to the ground near Cosmo and Wanda. The Mark Eliminator's limbs turned into regular Eliminator limbs.

The escape pod's door opened, Mark on the other side. "Yo, Earth buds!" He said. "…Sup?"

Cosmo and Wanda grabbed their wands, and Timmy cautiously walked over to the escape pod, where the Eliminator's detached arm lay. He picked it up. "The Darkness is back." He fainted, falling to the ground.

Terrance and Tamara quickly sped off in the car after they changed into their beach clothes, with Tamara driving. Timmy had practically confirmed it to them. He… did have a destiny. Had it been because of their previous negligence? Well, what they did just now wasn't helping.

"You saw what he did." Terrance said, breaking the silence. "He looked at his goldfish, and the goldfish looked back at him!"

"And… he called himself the 'Chosen One'." Tamara added. She took a right turn. "We were right. He does have a higher calling." She paused. "And it's all our fault."

"Honey. We need to stop dwelling on the past." Terrance stated. "All that will do is just make us feel worse and not get us anywhere. We need to focus on what's happening now focus on trying to improve our relationship as parents and son."

"But how? We don't even know where to start!" Tamara pointed out. "We've barely known much about him since he was 10!"

Terrance pondered this. Where would there be a lot of stored information about Timmy? After a few moments, it clicked. "I got it. Head to Dimmsdale Elementary."

"Why? What's at Dimmsdale Elementary?" Tamara asked. Before Terrance answered, she realized what he was talking about. "The permanent records…" She narrowed her eyes, and then made a sudden U-turn, heading toward Dimmsdale Elementary.

"After we get those permanent records, we're gonna go to the beach, take our vacation, and restore our sacred bond with our son!" Terrance said boldly with determination. There would be nothing that would stop them so soon… right? 

Chapter Text

A ladybug flew past the three Gems as they sat on a hill, looking at the sunset. Lion was resting while Steven leaned on him, playing his ukulele. Peridot walked up to him, holding a drill.

"Steven." Peridot addressed.

"Hi!" Steven responded.

"Why did we stop working on the drill?" Peridot motioned to the barn. "Why are they just sitting there looking at nothing?" She motioned to the Gems.

"Well, it's my birthday, and we decided to take it easy for a little bit." Steven explained. "I mean, just look at that view! It's beautiful."

Peridot scowled. "It's going to be blown to oblivion by the Cluster if we don't get back to work!"

"Working hard is important, but feeling good is important too." Steven said.

"What are you talking about?" Peridot yelled. She accidentally activated the drill she held, and it started to make a noise.

"Hey! Bzzzzzzzz." Steven said. Peridot turned off the drill. "What is that, a C?" Steven played a C on his ukulele.

"The drill?" Peridot asked, turning on the drill for a moment.

"Yeah, yeah!" Steven responded, standing up. Peridot turned on the drill again. Steven gasped. "Oh my gosh! Now it's music!"

"Music?" Peridot asked incredulously.

"Yeah, it's music, like this." Steven played all the notes on his ukulele. "Do re me fa so la ti do."

"Do me so do?" Peridot asked.

"Isn't it pretty?" Steven asked.

"That's exceedingly simple." Steven played another note. "Do me so ti…"

"We're making music!" Steven explained.

"What is the point? You're not 'making' anything."

"Well, if we're not making anything, then why does it sound so good?"

"I suppose its just interest." Peridot explained. "Do me so do… Devoid of substance or purpose, a hypothetical pattern. Do me so ti… For the satisfaction of bringing it to completion."


"Do me so ti… Interest without meaning, solutions without problems."

"And then you just add words. Here's what I've been working on." Steven said, strumming the ukulele. "Life and death and love and birth and peace and war on the planet Earth. Is there anything that's worth more than peace and love on the planet Earth? Come on and sing it with me!"

"Sing?" Peridot asked.

"The words relate to the key!"

"Key?" Peridot picked up a random key she found, and then tossed it.

"If it's a pattern, if it's a pattern, then just repeat after me." Steven stood next to Peridot. "Life and death and love and birth and,"

"Life and death and love and birth," Peridot repeated.

"By using me, ma fa mi, and ma fa mi to la," Steven continued.

"And peace and war on the planet Earth." Steven and Peridot sung together.

"Yes, yes, that's it!" Steven said.

"That's so easy." Peridot pointed out.

"Yeah, but that's what's fun about it! You should write something, you should write a song!"

"About what?"

"About whatever you're thinking!"

Peridot frowned.

Peridot stood on a log in front of a fire at the barn, as the Gems and Steven sat on a long log, listening to her.

"I guess we're already here, I guess we already know," Peridot sang. "We've all got something to fear, we've all got nowhere to go." Amethyst ate a marshmallow, while Pearl and Garnet looked at each other. "I think you're all insane!" Peridot pointed at the Gems. "But I guess I am too. Anybody would be if they were stuck on Earth with you."

Steven laughed in amusement. "Yes!"

As the night grew, all the gems including Peridot started to work harder on the drill than they had before.

"Life and death and love and birth and," Steven sung as Peridot drilled some screws into the drill.

"Life and death and love and birth and," Amethyst sang as she hammered at some metal, while Steven carefully hammered a nail on a small control box.

"Life and death and love and birth and peace and war on the planet Earth," Pearl sang as she tried to find a cord inside the drill. Peridot reached inside and grabbed it for her.

"Is there anything that's worth more," Garnet sang as she lifted up the drill, so Pearl and Peridot could tighten some screws.

"Is there anything that's worth more," Steven sang as Peridot talked to the Gems.

"Is there anything that's worth more, than peace and love on the planet Earth…" Peridot sang as Steven lied on the grass, playing his ukulele.

Mario and friends headed to the Space Bypass in search of the Pure Heart.

How did Squirps know about this secret route? Our heroes stared suspiciously at him.

" Why are you staring like that?" Squirps asked. "Are you falling for Squirps?"

In the darkness of space, the eyes of Squirps glinted mischievously…

After getting off the planet, the group had to put their space helmets back on, lest something awful to them. Though, they weren't floating around for too long before Squirps spoke up.

"This is the Space Bypass!" Squirps explained. "Yeah, from somewhere in here, we can enter the Whoa Zone. C'mon, space grunt, look for the entrance, squeork!"

"The 'Whoa Zone'?" Tippi questioned in disbelief. "You simply MUST be kidding with me… I demand answers…"

"It's a prohibited zone, squirp." Squirps explained. "Some call it the 'Space Graveyard,' squoooiks. It's a complicated maze… They say once you go in, you can never get out… And supposedly, the Pure Heart is hidden at the very back of that maze, squinkly!"

"How would you know that?" Tippi questioned yet again. "Who are you REALLY, you incontinent little imp?"

"Tippi, maybe you should calm down…" Mario said.

Tippi sighed. "Alright, but I don't like where this is going…"

Squirp's stomach then growled, causing him to giggle. "I made some room with that pit stop! Now I'm hungry! But don't worry about that, space grunts. Find the Whoa Zone entrance, squibble!"

Before too long, the group found a red X floating there. They used Fleep to see if there was anything behind there. When they did, they found a huge set of two green walls, one of them having a small hole in it.

Squirps floated up to the hole. "This hole… What a lovely shape, squirp!" He commented. "I don't know why…but I want to be squeezed into there! Someone squish me in!" Squirps was then squeezed into there. Once he was, there was shaking. Between the two walls emerged a large pair of double doors.

"What are those doors?" Peach asked.

"It's a space gate, squirp!" Squirps answered. "These lead from the Space Bypass to the Whoa Zone! Through this gate is the way forward, space grunts!"

They all went through the door. Then, ahead of them, they saw another red X. Once again using Fleep on it, another set of two green walls appeared, but this time, there was a hole in each one.

"Another wonderful shape!" Squirps said. "I feel another compulsion… Must…get…twisted…into…there! Someone twist me in!" Squirps was then twisted in. There was a rumbling noise. And then… nothing happened.

"Something… Something's missing, squirk…" Squirps said. "Definitely… I can't shake it… There's only one solution… That's right! Squirps must eat something yummy! Squirps will not move until Squirps eats something good! This I declare, squoorp!"

And so, the group had to find something that Squirps could eat. There were more of those wormholes nearby, maybe it could be through there?

And to their surprise, through one of the wormholes, there was a small store that sold three variants of Choco Bars, something that Squirps might like. They bought one of each, and were going to buy more but were deterred by how expensive they were. They then went back to where Squirps was.

"So hungry… Squirps can't move…" Squirps complained. "Well, Squirps CAN move, but so very slowly… Squirps needs to eat something yummy!" Mario held out one of the Choco Bars they bought earlier. "Squirps is a gourmet! You think I'd be satisfied by something like this, squaaag?" Squirps questioned. "But, you went to all this trouble, space grunt, so… I don't want to, but…"

Squirps took a bite of the Choco Bar. He paused. "Th-this is… The chocolate and nuts melt together, creating a full flavor with a clean finish! It's a sweet, chocolate sonata written for lovers… It's pure cocoa! …TOO GOOD!" At that moment, Squirps burst out of the hole and somehow duplicated himself into two, each Squirps going into a separate hole.

A pair of double doors soon appeared, just like last time. The two Squirps then got out of the holes and merged back to one. "Squirp! Sorry about that… Squirps got carried away… He floated down to Mario's level. "The goal is nigh, squoogle! Let's go, space grunts!"

They went through the double doors, and just like that, they were another step closer to getting the Pure Heart, and to the supposed 'Whoa Zone'.

Nighttime had come. And with that, the drill was getting close to being first. Steven, the Gems, and Peridot looked at their hard work.

"Nice work." Garnet said, lightly slapping Peridot's back. Peridot quickly turned around and raised her arms in self-defense. At that response, the Gems laughed, and Steven hugged Peridot.

"We really did it, huh." Peridot realized. "Oh wait! I need to check something!" She broke away from Steven's hug and ran to the drill.

"She's come so far." Steven said. "It feels like yesterday she was trying to kill us."

"No no, that was several weeks ago." Pearl responded, not understanding Steven's joke.

"Coordinates!" Peridot yelled from inside the drill. She poked her head out. "We still need the Cluster's exact coordinates in order to drill!"

"There's a Diamond Base that may hold that information." Pearl explained. "But getting there is going to be difficult."

"How come?" Steven asked.

"Because it's not accessible by warp pad." Pearl answered. "And it's on…" Pearl looked at the moon.

Steven gasped in excitement. "The moon!"

"Yes, Steven, the moon." Pearl said.

Steven ran over to Lion, who was currently resting on the grass. "Lion, can you make us a super-special warp to the moon?" Steven asked. Lion, in response, merely opened his eyes before stretching his limbs and closing his eyes again.

"Come on, Lion, we gotta do this to stop the Cluster!" Steven said. "If we don't, there's gonna be no more Earth! No more fun times with your pals, no more Lion Lickers… no more naps?"

Upon hearing the last part, Lion immediately stood up and roared. His eyes glowed with in determination.

"Guess it was naps." Steven commented. All five of them got on Lion, and the lion soon started running across the grass. After several seconds, Lion roared, and a portal appeared in front of them, one that they all soon went through.

In the distance, several pairs of green eyes lit up. They were ready, all of them wearing Fake-I-Fiers.

At the present moment, the situation was… awkward, to say the least. Mark stood at the door of his spaceship that had crash-landed in front of Timmy's home. Timmy stood there in front of it, while Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof floated above him.

Cosmo screamed in panic and pointed at Mark. "It's another Mark Eliminator!"

Quickly thinking, Poof grabbed his dirty diaper and threw it straight at Mark. Mark opened his mouth as the diaper flew to him, and ate it. "Whew, diaper delight!" He complimented.

"No vortex mouth, eats dirty diapers," Timmy listed off, as Mark hopped off his ship and landed on the ground, right in front of Timmy. "It's the real Mark!" Timmy cheered.

Mark immediately pulled Timmy into a hug. "Timmy Turner!" He set Timmy down, and bowed. "Oh, greatest warrior in the universe," He picked Timmy up. "You must help me defeat the metal warriors that has destroyed my entire planet!"

The remaining limbs of the inactive Eliminator crumbled into dust. Something pink fell on the ground. Wanda picked it up. It was a Fake-I-Fier. "And they stole all your Fake-I-Fiers!"

"A new Fake-I-Fier?" Mark asked, setting Timmy down. He grabbed the Fake-I-Fier from Wanda. "With Wi-Fi… shaa." Since he currently had no Fake-I-Fier on, he quickly put the new one on. After he did, the middle part spun, and he turned into a bear, a piano, and then a teenage human. "Cool, I'm Justin Jake Ashton, Earth teen dream with three first names!"

Timmy walked up to Mark and spun the Fake-I-Fier so the alien would turn back to normal. "So that's how the Eliminator was able to disguise itself as Mark!" Timmy realized.

"But why would the Darkness destroy just Yugopatamia and not the rest of the universe?" Wanda asked.

"Maybe it doesn't want to destroy the rest of the universe, but just Timmy!" Cosmo theorized. "I mean, if I tried to eat the universe, but a soft-glutted boy stopped me, I'd want to take him out before I tried again." Cosmo showcased his example by kicking Timmy to the ground. "Wouldn't you?"

"But if they did want to take out just Timmy, wouldn't they also try and take out anyone else that helped stopped the Darkness, like Mario, Violet, or anyone else that tried to in the past?" Wanda asked.

"Got that right." Cosmo said, crossing his arms, until he realized exactly what Wanda said. "Corn dog what?"

"No matter who stopped the Darkness in the past," Timmy started. "Right now, it's a job for the Chosen One!"

"Yes!" Mark cheered, tears in his eyes. "I knew you'd like, help me Timmy Turner!"

"Not me, Turbo Thunder!" Timmy quickly corrected. "There's no way I'm gonna fight the Darkness again! Not after what happened last time!"

"Is that your new action phrase, cause it's kinda long." Cosmo blatantly interrupted.

"We just find Turbo Thunder," Timmy started to explain. "He fires his thunder pits at the Darkness," Timmy mimicked what Turbo would do. "Darkness goes bye-bye," He noticed Trixie walking her poodle on the opposite end of the sidewalk. "And I live happily ever after in Dimmsdale, and marry Trixie Tang." Timmy ran to his side of the sidewalk and waved at Trixie. "Hi Trixie!"

"Help! Police!" Trixie screamed, suddenly running off.

Awkward silence.

"She digs me." Timmy said. "Now, first up, find Turbo Thunder!"

"So, where would this 'Turbo Thunder' even be at?" Mark asked.

Timmy thought for a moment. "Cosmo, Wanda, Poof, I wish we were in Fairy World!"

When the three fairies waved their wands, the five of them poofed away.

Terrance and Tamara finally arrived at Dimmsdale Elementary, but thankfully the drive wasn't too long. They quickly got out of the car.

"Is that my old camera?" Tamara asked Terrance, referring to the camera he held in his hand. She noticed that it sparkled a little.

"Yeah, I had used it to take this picture." Terrance said, pulling up the camera roll and showing Tamara a picture. The picture in question was the one taken all the way back when they were on their way to the MARF Festival, of Cosmo, Wanda, and Poof as gum.

"What does that prove?" Tamara asked.

"Their existence." Terrance said. "Now come on, let's go get Timmy's permanent records."

Tamara nodded. The two walked up to the double door entrance to Dimmsdale Elementary. Summer School was currently in session, so school was still open. Terrance pushed the buzzer next to the left door.

A couple seconds later, the principal, Ms. Waxelplax's voice could be heard. "Who is it?" She asked.

"We're Timmy Turner's parents, and we would like to have a discussion with you." Tamara answered.

"Oh, come in! I'll be there in a second to take you to my office." Waxelplax said. The double doors opened, and Terrance and Tamara walked in.

Not much time passed before Ms. Waxelplax walked up to them. She was shorter than the two, and was a little obese. She was in her late 30s, and wore a blue businesswoman's suit with a light blue blouse underneath.

"Hello, you two must be Mr. and Mrs. Turner." Waxelplax greeted.

"Please, call us Terrance and Tamara." Terrance said.

"Alright. Terrance and Tamara, I'll take you two to my office." Waxelplax said. "Follow me." She began walking to her office, the other two adults following her. "You know, you two looked a lot different the last time I saw you, all the way back at that parent-teacher conference."

Terrance and Tamara chuckled nervously, having obviously not remembered that at all cause they were never there. "Yeah…" Tamara said. "We sure were… different, weren't we?"

On the way to Waxelplax's office, Terrance and Tamara walked by classroom 44, where Mr. Crocker was nearly falling asleep while kids that have failed made up their schoolwork.

"Crocker came with us to the MARF Festival." Tamara remembered. "Maybe he can help us."

"We shouldn't get too many people dragged into this." Terrance said. "Besides, he'd probably think we're crazy, anyway."

They soon got to Waxelplax's office. Waxelplax took a seat at her desk, and Terrance and Tamara took seats in chairs across the table. The office looked to be one of the more spruced up parts of the school, compared to several of the classrooms.

"So, Mr. and Mrs. Turner…" Waxelplax said. "This appointment was so sudden, I'd like to know a little more about why you're here."

"We want to further Timmy's education." Tamara said. "If that makes any sense."

"Hm… have you discussed with Timmy what middle school he'll be going to?" Waxelplax asked.

Terrance and Tamara nervously looked at each other.

"No…" Tamara answered.

"Alright, no more beating around the bush." Terrance stated. "Mrs. Waxelplax, we would like to know if we could view our son's permanent records."

"Um, no." Waxelplax quickly answered.

"What? Why not?" Terrance asked.

"Because according to school policy, permanent records are only to be viewed by school administrators only." Waxelplax explained. "Except for when two students broke into them…" She muttered that part to herself.

"Well, we're his parents!" Tamara yelled, standing up. "Shouldn't that at least count for something?"

Waxelplax hesitated. "Umm…" She stood up. "I'm going to use the ladies' room. Why don't you two just… wait here, and then we'll discuss your son's schooling further when I get back." Waxelplax walked off.

"Come on." Terrance said once Waxelplax was out of earshot. "Let's find those permanent records." He stood up.

"Alright, but we'll have to hurry." Tamara responded. They quickly walked out of the room, going into the hallway. "Which way should we go first?"

"Hm…" Terrance started thinking. "We might have to ask Mr. Crocker about it."

Another voice was heard. "Or you could just ask me."

The two turned around. "Wait a minute." Terrance realized. "You're Francis, the kid that took the deed to our house that one time!"

"Yeah, I did take the deed." Francis said. "So what?"

"Whatever." Tamara said. "So, you know where the permanent records are?"

"Wait a minute." Terrance butted in. "There's a catch to this, isn't there?"

"So you're smarter than I thought." Francis smiled. "If you want me to show you the permanent records, I'll need you take out your wallet…" Terrance and Tamara took out their wallets. "Empty out all the cash…" They grabbed all money in their wallets and emptied it out into Francis's outstretched hands. He stuffed the money in his pockets. "And finally, give me all your credit cards." They grabbed any credit card they had, and gave it to Francis.

"That's it." Francis said. "Now come on, this won't take too long." He started walking, and motioned for Terrance and Tamara to follow. A couple minutes later, they came across a door, and a sign on it that said, "STUDENT PERMANENT RECORDS".

"Well, this is it." Francis said. "Enjoy. I'm outta here." He started to walk off. "I'm gonna bully some other kids into giving me their lunch money." He laughed.

"We need to cancel those credit cards." Terrance said once Francis was out of earshot. He opened the door. There were several stacked shelves in the middle of the large room.

"Well, this should be easy." Tamara said. She was about to casually walk into the room, but Terrance stopped her.

"Hang on a second. I've seen enough action movies to know where this is going." Terrance said.

"Oh come on, it's right there!" Tamara responded. "We can just walk up to it, find Timmy's record, and then get the heck out of here! In fact, I'm gonna do it right now!"

She walked into the room. Terrance was about to pull her away, but he saw that nothing happened. Tamara walked up to one of the shelves, trying to find the one labeled "T". After several seconds, she found it. She pulled it open, searching for Timmy's name.

"Here it is!" She exclaimed. She pulled it out.

The room turned various hues of red. An ear piercing alarm went off at the unauthorized access of the permanent records.

"Let's get out of here!" Terrance yelled over the harsh noise.

The two quickly ran out of the room. They nearly ran into Ms. Waxelplax and several security guards. Tamara quickly hid Timmy's permanent record behind her back before anyone saw.

"Mr. and Mrs. Turner!" Waxelplax quickly said. "I'm so sorry about this, I had no idea that someone would break into the-wait a minute." She paused. "How come you're out of my office?"

"We needed to get some water." Tamara quickly came up with an alibi.

"And," Terrance added. "We saw Francis heading toward the permanent records!"

Waxelplax gasped. At that moment, Crocker had been leading his students into the hallway. Francis had been the last one out, just in time for Terrance to rat him out.

"Hey, wait a minute!" Francis tried to defend himself, but before he could, the security guards grabbed him. "You rotten adults!" He yelled as he got carried outside.

The security guards carried Francis outside, and met two other security guards that looked nearly identical to them.

"We'll take him off your hands." The second one of them said. The first group handed Francis over to the second group, and they brought him into their police car, and drove off.

"Well, that was easy." A security guard from the first group said.

Back inside the school, Tamara still held Timmy's permanent record behind her back.

"I'm really so sorry about this." Waxelplax apologized. "Perhaps we can reschedule?"

"Oh yeah, we'll give you a call, okay gotta go bye!" Terrance quickly said before rushing off, Tamara after him. The two made it outside, and got into their vehicle.

"Alright, before we look at the permanent records, let's drive away from this school." Tamara said. And then, they took off. Once they opened those permanent records, they would finally uncover the secret that their child had been hiding from them for a long time…

Chapter Text

Mario and his friends took the Space Byway and merged into the Whoa Zone.

Known to some as the Space Graveyard, it was said to consume all who entered it.

" Just a little bit longer… We'll be arriving soon," young Squirps said.

With his unblinking eyes glimmering, Squirps continued to forge onward.

Would Mario and his friends get their hands on the Pure Heart at long last?

Mario and co. were at last in the Whoa Zone, where Squirps claimed the Pure Heart would be. The ground was covered with dark green lines, with black filling the empty space. Various platforms of the same texture floated around in random places, and the white walls were adorned with blue diagonal tiles.

"We're here, squeegle! This is the Whoa Zone!" Squirps explained. "Squirps has finally arrived, squoodly! Squirps is here!" A pause. "…Squirps can't wait! Squirps is going to scurry ahead. Follow Squirps when you can. But remember, space grunts, this place is a super-complicated maze… You'll get lost before you know it, so pay attention to where you're going, squeerp! Well, Squirps will see you guys later…at the spot where the Pure Heart waits!" Squirps quickly walked ahead.

"I can't believe that creature left us at a time like this…" Tippi commented. "But I must say, I do feel the presence of the Pure Heart… It's somewhere in this zone…"

Mario's grouped hoped they could be prepared for whatever this place would throw at them. Surely they would be able to, right? If they all stood together, then nothing would be able to stand in their way. And the sooner they got the Pure Heart, the better.

The group made their way through the door ahead, and began traversing what would be a very… weird maze.

First of all, the room they entered contained several Tileoids, which they quickly disposed of. The nearby question block only contained a single coin.

"Hopefully we won't have to fight anyone to get this Pure Heart." Violet joked.

"If we do, then I'll pummel them, just like I did to that jester!" Bowser said.

They had the choice of going into a door on a raised platform, or one on the ground level. They chose the top one, and made their way through the next room, going into a smaller one that contained a small key. They picked up the key, and went back to the other room, this time going through the lower door.

"You know, these floors remind me of…" Peach started.

"…Luigi?" Mario finished. He sighed. Just… when would he get to see his own brother again? Surely soon, right? He had to be okay, right? Bill's words echoed in his mind. 'I'll just find another one of you sad saps to make that deal!' Mario froze, accidentally causing Peach to bump into him. "Sorry." He apologized.

"Are you alright?" Peach asked.

Mario was about to answer, but Junior interrupted with his own input. "If I lost one of my siblings, I'd be pretty sad about it too. But I would never stop looking for him or her, no matter how long it would take. I… guess that's how you feel right now."

"I'm sure Luigi's alright." Violet said. They all began walking up a flight of stairs. "I'm really worried about him too. We all are."

The door ahead just so happened to need a key. They unlocked it, and went in the door, which surprisingly took them to the ceiling, which they were able to walk on. They felt slightly dizzy for a moment at the sudden change, though they pressed onward. The next rooms weren't any better, each shift in gravity feeling worse than the last, cause of the constant switching.

Every time Mario thought about Luigi, he thought about Bill. Every time he thought about Bill, his head hurt, which led to more confusion. He had never mentioned Bill to any of the others except Bowser, and he felt that he should. If they should ever encounter him, they would need to know what exactly they were up against.

…And to be honest, Mario didn't really know either. Nothing about the mysterious triangle made sense to him. What were his motives? Who did he work with? How much of a threat was he? Who… would he try and make a 'deal' with next? Hopefully, by letting more people know about Bill, he could stop it before it would eventually happen to some unsuspecting person.

"So, guys…" Mario said, a little out of the blue. "I've already told Bowser about this, but… have any of you heard of Bill Cipher?"

While Junior and Tippi had no reaction, Peach and Violet seemed to freeze for a split second upon hearing the name. Something in the back of their minds clicked, as if they tried to recover a lost memory, but couldn't.

"…Bill?" Tippi asked. "I… I think Merlon's said something about there being an ancient being, countless years old, and he resembled a golden triangle. That's all I know…"

"Yeah, that definitely sounds like him." Mario said. "Peach, remember a couple days ago when we were falling out of nowhere and landed on that concert? Apparently, Bill stopped me beforehand and tried to make a deal with me, but I declined. After that, you know the rest."

"He sounds… mysterious." Peach commented.

"I know. And that's what worries me." Mario responded.

"Bill?" Junior asked innocently. "Who's he?"

"Um…" Bowser said, unsure what to say. "We… don't exactly know."

The air among the group grew heavy as they all came to the realization that they had next to no idea about anything relating to Bill Cipher; what his motives were, where he came from, or anything. Still, they had to press onwards and not dwell on what ifs.

After finally traversing through most of the maze, they all came across a room that… just didn't feel right. Almost like a faint, foreboding aura, and it was spread throughout the whole room.

Squirps was standing in the middle of the room, having waited there for at least a half hour. "Slowpokes!" Squirps yelled. "Squirps was tired of waiting! Squirps almost gave up! The Pure Heart that you're looking for is just ahead, space grunts!"

"Squirps. You've done well. You're a smart kid…" An unknown, unfamiliar voice rang out.

"Stop it! Squirps is embarrassed!" Squirps said, blushing. "Wait… Whose voice was that, squoh?"

Suddenly, a figure jumped in, hitting Squirps's head, causing him to cry out. The figure used the momentum from the hit and landed on the floor. The aura became huge, making the heroes feel uneasy.

"Squirps? Are you alright?" Junior asked. Squirps was too dazed to answer.

The figure in front of them chuckled. He faced away from them.

"Wh-Who are you?" Tippi questioned.

The figure turned to face them. "Oh, me? Just one of Count Bleck's more promising minions. The Green Thunder…" He spun around several times and struck a pose. "Mr. L!"

Mario raised an eyebrow. "Mr… L?" Didn't that sound… familiar? The aura surrounding the room made it impossible to know exactly how, though.

Mr. L walked closer to them, and kicked Squirps away, knocking the little alien out. "I don't need you to tell me it's a cool name. I know it. Don't bother memorizing it. Why? Because I'm about to give you a burial at sea… I mean, a burial in space."

"Why would you even want to work for Count Bleck?" Violet questioned. "Don't you know what's at stake here?"

There was a pause. Mr. L went quiet for a moment. Then, he finally spoke. "Because I want to, silly Snowflake! It's fun!"

"Snowflake?" Violet questioned.

"Just who are you?" Mario demanded.

"Didn't you just hear me, Jumpman! We-I'm Mr. L!" Mr. L repeated.

"We?" Mario asked. "What do you mean, we?" He took a step closer to Mr. L.

Another momentary pause. "I meant exactly that. I have some much appreciated help from someone I trust a lot." Mr. L answered.

"Oh yeah? Who is he?" Mario challenged. He took another step forward.

Mr. L smiled. "Someone very special to me."

Mario stopped. That certainly was… vague. He narrowed his eyes. "Whatever. Just let us have the Pure Heart."

Mr. L chuckled. "Oh, you'll get a 'heart' alright. But first…" Without warning, Mr. L extended his hand, and out came green and yellow lightning that did not mix. Mario braced himself, but it merely went around him.

Before the others could react, the lightning hit them, sending them flying to the end of the end of the room, leaving Mario alone with Mr. L.

"Guys!" Mario yelled. He tried to run to them, but as he got close, a large wall of green and yellow electricity fell down before him. It circled nearly the whole room, leaving him trapped with Mr. L. Even though it could be very risky, Mario extended his hand to try to reach through the electricity.

"I wouldn't do that unless you want your early death sentence, Jumpman!" Mr. L warned. Mario froze. He retracted his hand. He turned around, and walked toward Mr. L.

"Why do want to fight just me?" Mario questioned. "I've never even met you before."

Mr. L laughed in response. "Really? You've never met me? That's the funniest joke I've heard all day. It should be pretty obvious who I am, but if you can't figure it out, well that's your problem."

Mario fumed. This pissed him off. "What are you getting at?"

"Ugh, I'm getting bored of this meaningless back and forth." Mr. L said with a fake yawn. "Let's just get this over with. I've been waiting a long time for this moment."

Mr. L suddenly jumped backward. Mario knew that he had no other choice than to try and defeat Mr. L. Alone. He could hardly tell what the others were doing, as the electricity wall obscured his view of them.

On the other side of the wall, though, everyone clearly see and hear what was going on.

"Mario!" Peach yelled. "Hang on, I'm coming!" She tried to run forward.

"Wait!" Violet said, grabbing Peach's arm. "You heard what Mr. L said. If anyone touches that, it could mean certain death for them."

Peach, holding back tears, moved away from the wall of electricity.

"Just who does this guy think he is?" Bowser questioned. "He has to be a real big coward if he wants to fight Mario alone!"

"…Do you think Mario will be alright?" Tippi asked, uncertain.

"I hope so." Violet answered. "I have noticed how once in a while he's stumbling, or how he just has to stop. It looks like he might pass out at any moment."

"Well, then we all can't just wait around and stand here!" Bowser yelled. "We have to do something!"

"…We can't…" Tippi said. "We can't do anything except hope…"

Mario ran forward, though he stumbled a bit. Mr. L was in front of him, just standing there, almost as if he was taunting him. Once Mario was close enough, he tried to punch him. Mr. L quickly ducked and sidestepped him, punching Mario in the side.

Mario fell to the ground in pain. Mr. L stalked toward him. Once Mr. L was close enough, Mario swept Mr. L off his feet, causing him to fall to his back. Mario swiftly stood up. Before Mario could do anything, Mr. L kicked him in the gut, knocking the wind out of him.

Mr. L stood up, ran forward, and punched Mario in the face, causing the plumber to fall onto his butt, clutching his nose in agony. He felt a little bit of blood trickling down. Was his nose broken? Most likely. Mario slowly stood up, still holding his nose.

"It's pathetic how weak you are." Mr. L taunted. "Then again, you humans are so fragile that it's amazing you've survived for so long!"

"You're just as human as me." Mario said. "I could easily do any of the same things you just did."

"That's quite a bold statement, Jumpman." Mr. L responded. "Did you forget how I said I had help?" Mr. L extended his arms outwards. Green and yellow lightning flowed out from Mr. L's hands, quickly making their way toward Mario.

Despite the pain, Mario let go of his nose. He needed to counter this. He extended his hands outward. Fire bursted from his gloves, heading toward Mr. L. The electricity and fire collided, and went to a standstill.

"Do you really think you can overpower me?" Mr. L questioned. "You're just a joke." With seemingly no effort, the strength of the electricity increased, pushing against the fire further.

Mario used all of his strength. His breathing became heavy. His limbs felt like jelly, but he couldn't stop, even for a second. The electricity became closer. He couldn't fail now. Everyone depended on him. Peach, Violet, Tippi, even Bowser and Junior, and… Luigi.

At thinking about his brother, Mario pushed harder. The fire pushed against the electricity. He was using all of his strength. Mr. L though… didn't look tired at all. It was as if he exerted no energy while doing this.

"Wow, Jumpman, I'm surprised at how stubborn you are!" Mr. L said with a laugh.

"I won't ever give up." Mario said. "Not…" He had to take a breath. "Not until I'm reunited with Luigi."

" Good luck, kiddo. Trust me, he's already long gone."

"How would you know?"

There was no response.

"Huh? Tell me!" Mario demanded. Tears flowed from his eyes.

Mr. L only smirked. He gave another push to the electricity. Mario didn't have time to react. The fire and electricity both rushed toward him. It struck. With a large cry of pain, Mario tumbled backwards several feet.

Mario's body was screaming at him to stop; to take a rest. But he couldn't. He was dangerously close to the electric wall. Marks from the combination of electricity and fire were all over his body and clothes.

Mario stood up, shaking. He looked around. Where was Mr. L? The masked man was nowhere to seen. A small shadow was cast over Mario. Without even looking up, Mario tucked and rolled to the side.

Mr. L landed in the spot where Mario once was. There was something Mr. L clutched in both of his hands, but Mario couldn't tell what it was. Mr. L stood up and turned, facing Mario, allowing the plumber to see exactly what he was holding.

A knife.

"W-Where'd you get that?" Mario asked. He had meant to be more demanding in tone, but he only came off as scared.

"Why does it matter? The only thing that matters is what I'm going to do with it." Mr. L answered. He tossed the knife in the air, and caught it as it fell down.

"Like what?"

"Oh, I'd be really happy to explain it to you." Mr. L's smile was wide, almost like a serial killer. "First, I'll incapacitate you with it, like I should've done already." He took a step toward Mario. Mario took a step back. "Then, I'll force all of your friends to become servants to Count Bleck or you'll be killed. I'll force them to track down everyone they know and kill them all. And then, I'll force you to kill your friends. And finally, I'll torture you, killing you as slowly and painfully as possible. You and all your 'friends' deserve to rot in the deepest pits of the Underwhere for all of eternity."

Mario was… beyond shocked. How could this guy be so… demented? He was sick and twisted. Just what did he have against him and his friends? Well, he wasn't going to just stand there. But… he couldn't say anything. He was practically frozen in place, shaken by what Mr. L had said.

"No more questions?" Mr. L asked. No response. "Good. Then let us begin, Jumpman."

Mr. L rushed at Mario, knife poised to strike. Mario needed to act quick. This was no longer just a simple fight. It was at that moment, he realized…

One of them wouldn't make it out of here alive.

With a newfound rush of adrenaline, Mario ducked a split second before Mr. L slashed at him with the knife. He pushed his feet forward and tackled Mr. L, bringing them both to the ground. Acting quickly, Mario used the weight of his body to keep Mr. L pinned to the floor, and grabbed the arm that held the knife, trying to keep it from doing anything. He needed to get that knife away from Mr. L, no matter the cost.

Mr. L struggled. Hard. He punched Mario several times, causing the plumber to weaken. Using this advantage, Mr. L gained the top position quickly, though Mario still held his knife arm. Mario managed to push Mr. L over in front of him, using the leverage from swinging the knife arm combined with pushing his chest up.

Mario stood up, and ran toward Mr. L as soon as he did. He grabbed Mr. L's arm, and pinned it. Mr. L struggled once again. Mario tried to pry the knife out of Mr. L's grasp. Suddenly, an arm wrapped around his neck. Crap. He forgot about Mr. L's other arm.

If Mario tried to free himself from the choke, then he would risk the knife plunging into wherever Mr. L wanted it. If he tried to focus on the knife, Mr. L would choke him until he died, or at least close to it. He did something desperate. He twisted Mr. L's arm back further and further, until-


The sound echoed throughout the room. A number of things happened. Mr. L let go of Mario. The knife suddenly flew off out Mr. L's hand as it was still moving, causing it to fly across the room.

Mario stepped away from Mr. L, as he saw he was clutching his arm with his other arm. Wait. He… had broken Mr. L's arm. He turned. The knife. It was by itself. He turned back to Mr. L. He had stopped clutching his arm. Mr. L looked… pissed.

Run. Knife. Now.

Mario ran-no sprinted toward the knife. It was all the way on the other side of the room. Mr. L lunged at him. Mario was too fast. Mr. L missed completely. Footsteps behind him. Mr. L was after him. This was what could make the difference between life and death.

Halfway there. Mario pushed further. Almost there. Using as much strength as he could, he lunged for the knife, arm outstretched. He fell to the ground. He grasped the knife.

Mario turned onto his back. Mr. L was upon him. Mario tried to get up, attack, or do anything, but Mr. L stopped him by driving his knee into Mario's chest. Mario couldn't breathe. Mr. L grabbed Mario's knife arm with his own arm; the one that wasn't broken.

In the split second he saw, Mario noticed something. Even though Mr. L's arm was broken, he… just didn't seem to care or mind. It bent awkwardly, but Mr. L still used it. Mario had been dwelling on that fact too long. Mr. L took control of his arm easily. His knife arm.

Mr. L was a lot stronger than him. It was only a split second before it happened. Mario didn't know why he did it. Revenge for breaking his arm? Following up on what he said he would do? Regardless, it didn't matter at this point.

Mario had been holding the knife with his right hand, simply because it was his dominant hand. Mr. L had forcefully ripped the knife out of his hand. He pinned Mario's arm down, his palm facing the floor.

Mr. L brought the knife down.

It pierced through Mario's clothes, and right after, his flesh.

Mario screamed. The pain only increased his adrenaline rush. His unrestricted limbs flailed wildly, trying anything to get away from the pain. Mr. L suddenly flew forward off of him. Did he do that?

There was no time to process anything. Mario heard a bloodcurdling scream, but it wasn't his own. Powered by his own adrenaline, Mario managed to move away and turn around, enabling him to see what was happening.

Mr. L was getting electrocuted. Mario had thrown him onto the electric wall. Didn't Mr. L say that was… lethal? Oh.

Mr. L screamed in agony for several seconds. The electric circular wall fazed away. Everyone behind the wall ran past the fallen Mr. L, all of them worried about Mario's condition. They were shocked.

Despite the drops of blood already littering the room due to his broken nose, his arm was much worse. The knife was stuck a couple inches into his right arm, and blood was caked on it. Blood poured out of the stab wound, eventually staining Mario's white glove.

Peach shrieked. Tippi moved back in shock. Violet began crying. Bowser stood there, eyes wide. Junior slapped his hands over his mouth and whimpered, reminded of his past mistake.

"Oh-Oh-Oh my god!" Peach yelled. "Quick! We need to-"

A dark growl could be heard where Mr. L's body lay. He stood up. What were once white eyes under the mask turned a sickly yellow. He glared daggers at the group of heroes. "Why… do YOU KEEP GETTING IN MY WAY?!" Mr. L screamed. Peach and Violet immediately ran forward, standing in front of Mario.

Violet immediately summoned an ice sword. "You won't lay another finger on him!" She all but yelled, ready to attack.

"Good luck trying to stop me!" Mr. L yelled. He raised his arms up. Shaking. Mario nearly fell over, but Bowser and Junior held him up. From a panel in the ceiling, a giant mech was quickly lowered to the floor. The mech resembled Mr. L's head, made out of robotic parts.

Mr. L jumped into the mech, and activated it. "This is what happens when you get in my way, Snowflake and Parasol Girl!" The shaking resumed. Mr. L laughed. The laugh seemed hollow and empty.

There was a flash.


Peach and Violet found themselves in space, thankfully with their space helmets on somehow. Mr. L was in his mech, which he had named 'Brobot.' His grin was wicked, almost like someone in an insane asylum.

There was a Squirps in Violet's hands and in Peach's. What was this? How did Mr. L do this?

"Now sit back as I blow your bodies into smithereens!" Mr. L said, wildly cackling. "Once I'm done with you, I'll finish off Jumpman, and then go for Koopa and his useless son!"

Mr. L's voice has a definite change to it. Before, it had seemed familiar. But now… it was still familiar? That made Violet's and Peach's heads hurt trying to think about it. Whatever. Mr. L could not be reasoned with. They had to take him out. Despite anything that may have happened, Mario never deserved what happened to him.

"H-Hey! Where'd they all go?" Bowser questioned. Mr. L, Peach, and Violet had all just… vanished.

"I don't know!" Tippi yelled. "Come on, we have to help Mario!"

Bowser quickly refocused his attention over to the plumber. He was still awake and sitting up, that was good. Tears flowed out of Mario's eyes steadily. The adrenaline he had was long gone, forcing him to feel the full extent of the pain. He continually whimpered. His left hand clutched his chest, his heart beating quickly. Any movement of his right arm caused a shockwave of pain.

Bowser wasn't an expert at this kind of stuff. But until Peach and Violet got back, he had to take care of Mario. First of all, the knife was the biggest issue. Who knows where that's been; it needed to be taken out. But if he took it out, Mario's bleeding would increase, and that wasn't good.

Taking out the knife would be the best option. He just needed something to soak up the blood afterward. "Does anyone have any cloth or gauze or anything I could use to stop the bleeding once I take out the knife?"

Junior didn't answer. He was too shaken. He couldn't tear his eyes away from the scene in front of him. Bowser could understand. Junior was only 6; something like this would traumatize him greatly.

"I do have some gauze stored…" Tippi answered.

"Hurry, fork it over!" Bowser yelled.

Tippi quickly used her powers to summon the gauze wrap, and it landed in Bowser's outstretched hand. He moved over to Mario's arm, and carefully grabbed the end of the knife. "Sorry about this, Mario." Bowser made sure he had a tight grip on the knife. He yanked it out of Mario's arm, causing the plumber to let out another scream of pain.

Tippi quickly floated over to Mario and landed on his hat, trying to calm him down. Bowser only looked at the blood-caked knife for a moment, silently cursing it and Mr. L before tossing it aside. He wrapped the gauze around Mario's arm, trying to be quick and gentle.

Soon, Bowser used up the entire roll of gauze. Thanks to all of the blood, most of it was stained a shiny red. That was all Bowser could do for now. Hopefully Peach and Violet come back soon.

He heard another groaning sound coming from the end of the room. Oh right. He had forgotten about Squirps. The small alien woke up. He spotted the four, and walked over to them.

"Squirps' head hurts! Squirps wants to know what's going on here!" Squirps said.

"Mario got injured. That's what happened." Bowser said with a huff. He crossed his arms and glanced at Mario. He was… a little better. His breathing went down to a normal rate, finally. His left arm hung down like his right arm, but he was still crying.

"…Squirps did not know this. Squirps is very sorry for Mario." Squirps responded.

"We also need to wait for Peach and Violet to come back…" Tippi added. "They disappeared along with Mr. L…"

The name Mr. L sparked a reaction in Bowser. He had seen the entire fight between him and Mario, and was… unable to do anything. If he ever saw Mr. L again, he would-hang on a second. Mr. L had been shocked by that electric wall. Mr. L himself said that someone would die if they touched it. So… how could Mr. L possibly still be alive? No part of it made sense. Nothing about anything made any sense anymore.

Junior was sitting down. Bowser walked over and sat down next to him. "Um, Junior? Are you alright?"

Junior shook his head. He sighed.

Bowser frowned. He was expecting that answer, and didn't like it. "What's on your mind, kiddo?"

"Well…" Junior started, unsure of how to formulate all of the thoughts swimming in his head. He pulled the mysterious page he had found at the sewers out of his hammerspace. "I found this a while back, but I'm not sure what it means."

Junior handed the paper to Bowser. The larger koopa inspected it. He… understood nothing about it. All the strange symbols just had no meaning to him. "I'll get someone to look into it later." He handed the paper back to Junior.

Peach and Violet had done everything in their power to try to stop Mr. L. Swerving up and down to avoid attacks, using the Squirpses to attack the mech, and getting the randomly scattered power-ups. After a while… the mech had started to break down. At last. Though, Mr. L… didn't look that angry. In fact, he just seemed to not care.

"You may gotten away this time," Mr. L said. "But know this. There will be someone among you that you cannot trust, and the day will come where everything you know and love will change. Until then…"

There was a sudden flash of light, forcing Peach and Violet to shut their eyes. A few seconds passed. They felt the cold surface of a floor on their feet. They opened their eyes.

They were back in the Whoa Zone, right how where they were before. They quickly scanned ahead. Mario had a gauze wrap on his right arm, stained red. The knife was across the room. Mario was passed out still sitting, presumably from the blood loss, and Tippi sat on his hat. Bowser and Junior were sitting next to each other.

"We're back, is Mario alright?" Peach asked in a hurry, running over to the person in question.

"He's sleeping…" Tippi answered. "…What happened to Mr. L?"

"We're… not sure." Peach answered.

"Alright, we need to hurry up and find that Pure Heart." Violet declared. They couldn't afford to waste any more time."

"Squirps knows where it is!" Squirps said. "It's just beyond that door! Hurry, space grunts!"

After Bowser carefully picked up Mario and started carrying him, the group made their way over to the nearby door, and entered it. When they got into the room, Squirps quickly walked ahead.

"Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! Squirps brought them here!" Squirps said in excitement. The group walked forward, and Squirps turned to face them. "Oh, we're finally here… Come on! Say hi to Squirps's mommy, squirp!"

Ahead of them, there depicted a large, golden statue of what appeared to be Squirps's mom. The statue sparkled.

"Yeah, this is Squirps's mommy! The queen of Squirpina! Her name is Squirpina XIV!" Squirps explained.

"The queen is…your mother?" Tippi asked. "So you are…"

"Squirps is the prince of Squirpia, a once-great kingdom… My true name is…" Squirps paused. "Squirp Korogaline Squirpina! Sorry for not telling you… Squirps promised not to tell! It makes Squirps a target! Long ago, Squirps's mother was told that destruction would come to the world. And in order to protect us from this destruction, we needed the Pure Heart… So mommy hid the Pure Heart in the Whoa Zone, where no one could get to it. And so, 1,500 years ago, Squirps was put to sleep in a hibernation capsule, squeep! Squirps was meant to bring the hero here…to protect the world, squirple!"

"Ah… so that's why." Tippi said, her and the others that were awake taking in the information.

"The prince of Squirpia, Squirps, has a message from the queen to deliver…" Squirps said. " 'I bestow upon you the Pure Heart in the hope that you will save the world…' Here! Take it! Squirp!"

The statue rose up, showing a space under it. And out from it came the Blue Pure Heart, which floated over to Peach. It slowly floated down to her as she caught it. Through all of their trials and tribulations, they had at last gotten the 5th Pure Heart.

" Phew! Now that Squirps is all relaxed, Squirps feels kinda…tired…" Squirps said.

And with that, Squirps lay down before the statue of his beloved mother.

" Mother…" he said, his voice soft. "I did my best, right? Are you…proud…of me?"

Then…slowly…young Squirps closed his eyes…

The mission had weighed heavy on his tiny back, and he was proud to fulfill it.

Chapter Text

As soon as Steven, Peridot, the Gems, and Lion had gone into the warp, they were all encompassed in a vortex of flashing light, the shape of it being a diamond.

"Pretty cool, right?" Steven asked Peridot. Peridot only screamed in response.

Lion created several more portals, each one causing them all to go faster. After several seconds, the last portal Lion created caused them to practically fly into a cylinder-like room.

The room was large. On all 4 sides, it contained murals of 4 beings, them being pink, blue, yellow, and white. In the middle of the floor, there depicted 4 diamonds, in the same colors as the murals on the wall. Each diamond was closest to the color mural it represented.

The group, riding on Lion, was thrown right into one of the walls of the room. Steven immediately got off of Lion. "Lion, are you doing okay, bud?" Steven asked, seeing how tired Lion looked.

"Ugh, get me out of this furry freak!" Peridot said, trying to walk off of Lion, only to yelp as she slipped and fell to the floor.

Lion breathed heavily, clearly exhausted. "Aw, Lion." Steven said, hugging him. "You're earned your naps for the week." Steven stood up.

Garnet used her left gem as a flashlight, illuminating part of the base. Pearl frowned as she did the same, using her gem as a flashlight. Peridot followed suit.

"It doesn't look like the moon." Steven said, looking around at the strange murals.

"Hey look over here!" Amethyst said, running over to a large, closed door. On the right of it were 4 diamonds, their combined shape looking like a larger diamond. Amethyst pressed her hand on it, and the door opened.

There were steps outside leading to the surface of the moon. The air rushed outward, but only for a second as Amethyst quickly moved her hand away, and turned around. "Yep! We on the moon!"

"Amethyst, please! Don't blow us into space!" Pearl scolded, her hair frazzled from the air rush a moment ago.

Steven giggled as he jumped up, the lower gravity of the moon allowing him to jump far higher than on Earth. "Look at me!" Steven said, jumping up again after he landed. "I'm a… moon boy!" He landed on the floor next to Amethyst.

"Alright, moon boy!" Amethyst cheered. She and Steven jumped up at the same time, but while Steven still jumped high, Amethyst only jumped as high as she would normally, and landed on the floor in a heap.

"Moon boy quadruple backflip!" Steven said, back flipping next to the blue mural.

"Hey, why can't I be a moon boy?" Amethyst complained, getting up.

"We're gems. We're a space-faring race designed to conquer other worlds." Peridot explained. "Our physical forms adjust automatically to the gravity of any planetoid." She grew annoyed at Amethyst's ignorance.

"Aw, lame." Amethyst pouted, turning to look at Steven.

"I was bouncing on the moon one day-" Steven sang, though he let out a noise as he accidentally bumped into the wall, and fell to the ground. He looked up, seeing the large, blue, strange mural. "Hey Peridot, who is this supposed to be?" He asked.

Peridot ran over and looked up. She gasped. "It's Blue Diamond…" She paused. "Wait. Are they all here?" She looked to the left, and her smile grew. "Ah, yes, there she is!"

"Who?" Steven asked. He followed Peridot as she ran to the yellow mural.

"Behold!" Peridot exclaimed, extending her arms out. "Yellow Diamond!" The mural of Yellow Diamond showed her holding many planet-shaped objects, similar to the Blue Diamond mural. "Isn't she magnificent?"

"Wow…" Steven said, amazed. "So, who are the Diamonds anyway? They seem like a big deal."

Peridot froze. "Are you joking me?" She turned to Steven. "The Diamonds are the Gem matriarchs! Together, they make up the Great Diamond Authority that governs Homeworld and all the outlying colonies! We live to serve them."

Garnet cleared her throat as she walked over to Peridot. Garnet wore a scowl on her face.

Peridot nervously chuckled. "We were all made to serve them even though some us… don't anymore." Beat. "Hey, I think that's a control service over there! Let's take a look!" Peridot suddenly changed the subject. She ran over to the other side of the room.

"Yeah!" Steven cheered, following her. The other three gems followed them. The floor near the wall had a pattern of long, thin, rectangles. Peridot kneeled down on one of the tiles as Garnet and Amethyst arrived first.

"I think this is right." Peridot said, inspecting the tile. "The material is different from the surrounding stone. I think if I just do…" Peridot moved her hands on the tile as Pearl finally arrived. "This!" The tile glowed, and then, all the rest of the tiles moved upward, forming into stairs. Lion happened to be sleeping on them, but he was woken up when they partly raised him up, and he fell downward.

Peridot giggled in excitement, like a small child would. The 5 started to walk up the steps, Steven leading the pack while jumping up a couple steps at a time.

"This is so incredible!" Peridot gushed, walking right behind Steven. "Only the most elite of the elite can enter these sanctums! We are literally walking in the footsteps of the Diamonds!"

The five walked past the mural that depicted White Diamond.

"They must really like stairs." Steven commented.

All of them soon came to another floor. In the middle of the room, there was a strange object. It was a medium sized blue sphere, surrounded by a mysterious blue light.

"Hey, what's this room?" Steven asked curiously.

"It's not what we came for." Garnet simply answered, continuing to walk up the steps.

"Can we hurry it up?" Amethyst asked. "This place gives me the creeps…" She quickly walked up the steps, Pearl taking a quick glance at the sphere before walking up also. Steven stared at the sphere, wondering what possible secrets it could hold, before walking up the steps.

A flight of stairs later, they were on the highest and last floor. In this room, the walls formed a dome-like shape, covered with glass so everyone could see the moon.

Steven paused. "We really are on the moon…" From there, he could see Earth, and-wait, what was that small purple and black thing? Ah, it probably didn't matter.

In the middle of the room, there were steps leading up to a large, stone control chair and a control panel in front of it. A pink diamond pattern covered it.

"Oh my gosh!" Peridot said, looking at the control panel. "This looks like it could be brand new! I mean, it's a relic by today's standards, but golly, it's so elegant, so simple, so perfect!"

While the Gems crowded around Peridot as she continually complimented the control panel, Steven climbed onto the chair behind them.

"So, how do you turn it on?" Amethyst asked.

"…I have no idea." Peridot realized. The control panel suddenly lit up.

They turned around and saw Steven giggling as he pressed his hand against a larger hand-shaped symbol. "Hey, it's got one of those glowy hand dealies." Steven said.

"You can't sit there!" Peridot screamed, appalled.

"Why not, it's really cool?" Steven asked.

"Because that chair is only for the most elite Gems!" Peridot explained. "You can't go around sitting where an elite would sit!"

"Well, they aren't here now." Steven pointed out. He scooted over so Peridot would have room to sit. "Right?" He patted the seat.

Peridot nervously glanced around. She quickly ran up and sat down next to Steven. She giggled, realizing she was obviously breaking many rules by the act of sitting there.

"Hey, what's this doodad for?" Steven picked up a small object that was sitting in a small compartment next to him. It looked to be diamond shaped.

"Put that back!" Peridot scolded. She reached next to her and pressed the hand-shaped symbol, activating it. Next to her were five smaller buttons that she slid a finger across. The chair moved closer to the control panel.

"This is a really old system." Peridot commented. She inputted a password that activated a large, blue, holographic screen above them. Several diamond shaped files popped up, and Peridot scrolled through until she found the one on the Cluster. A map of the Earth and all 7 of its continents popped up. A red dot popped up in the lower west United States. "Ah ha, there's the insertion point!" It zoomed in. "Looks like the Beta Kindergarten in Facet 9. It's the smaller of the two, not nearly as impressive as yours, Amethyst."

"Uh, thanks?" Amethyst shrugged her shoulders.

"But where is the Cluster now?" Pearl asked.

"Hang on." Peridot said. On the screen, there was an image of Earth on its side, and a line going into the Earth, stopping where the Cluster was. "There it is! It's embedded deep in the mantle. Relative to the barn, it's roughly 2500 units down. All we need to do is feed this data to the drill, and we should be all set."

"That's it then! Mission accomplished!" Pearl cheered.

"Yeah team!" Steven also cheered.

"Great." Amethyst got up to leave. "Let's get the heck outa here." She got up to leave, as did Garnet and Pearl.

"Wait, hold on." Steven said. "Does this thing have any games on it?" He directed his question at Peridot, not that anyone else would know the answer.

"No no no no," Peridot quickly shook her head. "This wasn't used for 'games'."


Peridot began typing stuff down. "It was used for planning the colony. Here, look." Peridot slid something, and an image appeared on the screen, getting the other three Gems' attention, and they walked back to where they were.

The image of the Earth like it would be portrayed on a map was shown again, this time with small, red dots littering. "So here's a map of all structures that were originally built on Earth. But, this only accounts for 5% of what was originally planned." Images of various structures Steven and the Gems had traveled to through many of their previous adventures began popping up.

"What was the plan?" Steven asked.

"Well, let's take a look." Peridot pressed a button. The image was replaced with a 3D hologram of Earth. Pearl immediately slapped a hand over her mouth.

At first, the hologram looked normal. But a few seconds later, multiple holes steadily got dug into it, making the Earth a hollow shell of what it once formally was. Many structures and beams of light circling the Earth appeared.

"A finished Earth colony." Peridot said. "Wow, look at this! A finished Earth colony!" Despite her excitement, the others, especially Pearl, were horrified at this. "89 kindergartens, 67 spires, a Galaxy Warp in each facet, efficient use of all available materials, what were you thinking shutting this operation down? It could've been great!"

"No! You're wrong!" Garnet yelled, angered.

"What do you mean?" Peridot asked, confused. "It's perfect. Look at it." Steven flinched.

"We are looking at it." Pearl stated.

Amethyst crossed her arms. "Yeah, this plan stinks!"

"Completing this colony would've meant the extinction of all life on Earth!" Garnet added.

"But think of the good it would've done!" Peridot argued. "The Gems that would've been made, our empire expanding!"

"Rose Quartz believed all life was precious." Pearl said. She turned to face Peridot. "And worth protecting."

"Well if she wanted to protect it she did a lousy job!" Peridot yelled. "There'd be no Cluster if the Earth had stayed a colony! Now there's no colony, and there's gonna be no Earth, so thank you Rose Quartz, you doomed the planet!"

What Peridot has just said had pissed off Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl. Her words flew in the face of the entire point of their existence. Steven tried to calm the situation down. "Oh, is there anything that's worth more-"

Garnet grabbed Peridot by her uniform and lifted her up to eye level, forcing the green gem to make eye contact. "You. Listen to me. Now." She summoned a gauntlet in her other hand. "You are talking about things that you do not understand."

"Garnet, stop, please!" Steven pleaded. Garnet looked at him. "It's not worth it. We're done here, we got what we needed, let's just go home."

Garnet hesitantly let go of Peridot, roughly throwing her to the ground. Garnet then used her gauntlet and smashed the control panel, destroying it for good. Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl began to walk off, though Peridot and Steven hung back.

"…What'd I say?" Peridot asked, genuinely confused. "I'm just stating a fact. It's not like I lied and said that the Earth would turn into metal or something like that. The rebellion didn't really… fix anything. It just delayed the inevitable."

"It's not the way they see it." Steven said. "They spent thousands of years trying to protect the Earth. I thought maybe… you finally understood why." Steven walked down the steps. Peridot was about to follow, but she looked back at the chair.

Steven reached the bottom of the steps, and Peridot hadn't come down yet. "Peridot!" He called out.

At that moment, Peridot started walking down the steps. "What? I'm coming." She asked. Her hand was behind her back for some reason.

As she walked past Steven, he could clearly see why. In her hand, she held what he had previously taken for a moment, only to put it back when Peridot told him to. The small, diamond shaped object. What was it for? Why did she grab it?

"Let's go, you two!" Garnet called out.

Steven narrowed his eyes, and followed.

Fairy World was unusually busy, what with all of the fairies roaming around on the sidewalks. On the corner of one of the busiest sidewalks, Turbo Thunder held a sign over his head that read, 'Darkness is coming!' and next to him was a cup for donations.

"The Darkness is coming back!" Turbo yelled, trying to alert any passing fairies. Most of them merely gave Turbo a sly look as they passed by, though one fairy absentmindedly tossed in a coin as he read a newspaper.

"Thanks!" Turbo said. "And you'll all be sorry you rejected the true Chosen One, Turbo Thunder!" He threw the sign aside as he flexed his muscles to prove his point.

A couple seconds later, there was a POOF, knocking several passing fairies aside. Jorgen now stood next to Turbo. "I am only sorry I didn't ban you from Fairy World sooner." Jorgen said.

"What?" Turbo questioned, turning to face Jorgen. "I'm Turbo Thunder! You can't ban Turbo Thunder fro-" Unfortunately for him, Jorgen did just that as he snapped his fingers, effectively banning Turbo.

Several seconds later, Timmy, the three fairies, and Mark all poofed in, right next to Jorgen. Jorgen laughed. "Hey, you just missed me banning Turbo Blunder from Fairy World!"

"Oh no you didn't!" Timmy, Cosmo, and Wanda all said at the same time.

"Where is he?" Timmy demanded.

"Who knows? Who cares?" Jorgen asked, in the moment pleased with his own actions. "He kept ranting 'The Darkness is coming back,'" Jorgen laughed some more.

"The Darkness is coming back!" Timmy, Cosmo, and Wanda yelled once again.

Jorgen kept laughing, until he realized the severity of what exactly he had done. "Oh…"

Not too long later, the 5 of them went to the Cave Of Destiny. Back to the first mural Jorgen, Timmy, and Junior had been at several days ago.

"Wow," Cosmo said. "This place sure is a lot creepier than I remember."

"Wait, you've been here before?" Timmy asked.

"Oh yeah!" Cosmo said, about to unveil something potentially important. "A long time ago, Wanda and I-"

"Cosmo! Now's not the time for that!" Wanda quickly chastised.

"Sorry." Cosmo apologized.

"Anyway…" Jorgen glared at Cosmo and Wanda, and gestured to the cave drawings. "Turner, what are you saying? That I missed a hidden part of the cave prophecy?" Jorgen stood straight up. "Turner, I have the eyes of an eagle, the speed of a puma, and the wisdom of a great horned owl!"

"If you have all those traits, then shouldn't you have already found it?" Cosmo asked. Jorgen just ignored him.

"Alright, if we're going to find this prophecy," Mark started. "Why don't we just look around more and try and find stuff," Mark slithered forward. "Like this really black area." In front of him, there was a part of the wall that was just completely black, like there was no light there at all.

Timmy walked up to it, and clapped twice. Several torches on the wall lit up, revealing the wall's contents. Timmy read it aloud. "Cave Prophecy Part 2: How to find the Second Wand?" His eyes widened.

"Okay, maybe it's the eyes of a mole and the wisdom of a clotheshamper…" Jorgen corrected himself. "But I still have the strength of a lion!" He flexed his muscles.

"There's a second wand?" Timmy asked himself, grabbing his hair and his hat. In front of him was the largest mural of them all. It depicted Turbo Thunder standing on a strange blue moon, holding two large wands, one in each hand.

Cosmo laughed, and pointed at another mural. This one depicted Fairy World getting attacked… by Eliminators… And also, there was a small drawing off to the side that depicted a building, one that would be used on a farm, also getting attacked by Eliminators.

"Check it out!" Cosmo laughed. "This cave picture looks like the Eliminators taking over Fairy World!" He laughed some more, but then suddenly stopped, realizing what he just said. "Corn dog what?"

The main streets of Fairy World seemed to get even busier. Practically dozens of fairies roamed the streets; way more than usual. Meanwhile, Juandissimo and Cupid were having lunch together.

A waiter handed Cupid a plate of chocolate shaped like a heart. Cupid scoffed in exasperation. "This is solid." He pushed the plate off to the side. "I said I wanted my chocolate heart filled with nougat!"

"Why don't you have a salad for once?" Juandissimo asked. "Caramel makes you irritable."

"No, what makes me irritable is how busy downtown is today." Cupid commented. "Seriously, what is with all the fairies?"

At his statement, something changed. Over half of the fairies stopped, and their eyes turned green. Against all odds, what the fairies had feared would return, had in fact returned. The Eliminators. They made themselves known by shapeshifting into their Eliminator forms using their Fake-I-Fiers.

"Those are not fairies, they are Eliminators!" Juandissimo quickly said.

And then, it was pure chaos.

Fairies screamed as they tried to get away, dropping their wands on accident. The Eliminators took quick work of capturing all of the fairies, making sure none were left behind. For good measure, the Eliminators also took all of the wands they could.

And with that, their quick takeover of Fairy World had begun.

Yet another meeting in Castle Bleck soon began. Everyone, including Count Bleck, Nastasia, O'Chunks, Mimi, and Dimentio were all there. Everyone, including… Mr. L.

"Yeah, so, guys? Huddle up, 'K?" Nastasia asked. "We're just gonna have a quick new-minion orientation. His name is Mr. L, and he comes to us from one of our key competitors. In fact, he even joined willingly…"

Mr. L looked around. "Wow, all of you sure look pathetic, especially Jester over here! No wonder Jumpman and his pals defeated you all, you're almost worthless rookies!"

"Worthless? Rookie?" O'Chunks yelled. "C'mere an' I'll introduce yeh to Fist Jr. an' his wee pal, Slappie!"

"Gosh, Mr. L, but didn't you get pretty spanked too?" Mimi pointed out. "So maybe you're the rookie!"

Mr. L laughed. "Spanked? How hilarious! Trust me, if I ever run into Jumpman again, oh ho, he'll be mine. But enough about this, I need to fix a couple things real quick. See ya in a few!" Mr. L hopped away.

" 'Though the man in red shall wield formidable powers, one shall stand against him.' " Count Bleck quoted. " 'The man in green shall use the Chaos Heart's power to bring darkness to all.' " Count Bleck chuckled. "So it is written in the Dark Prognosticus."

"So what you're saying is… the "man in green" is our minion-in-training, Mr. L?" Dimentio asked.

O'Chunks stomped the platform he stood on. "Whut? That makes as much sense as a beef an' broccoli sandwich!"

"Calm yourself, O'Chunks." Count Bleck said. "Make ready. Count Bleck is sending you on a new mission.

"Ah, now THAT makes sense! It'll be me honor, Count!" O'Chunks responded. "I, O'Chunks, swear to you… This hero's got a hot date with me feet! Chunks away!" O'Chunks hopped away.

"My, aren't we hot blooded?" Dimentio commented. "Well, well… I suppose that's to be admired. Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got to be on my way as well. Ciao!" Dimentio snapped his fingers, and disappeared.

"So poor little Mimi doesn't get to be in on the fun?" Mimi asked herself. "This stinks." She too left. Count Bleck and Nastasia were now alone.

Nastasia frowned. "Yeah, I hate to seem like a whistle-blower here, but O'Chunks may not… Actually, even Dimentio, Mimi, and Mr. L may not be up to this… Even with Bill's help… That hero's gonna collect the Pure Hearts and come here. He'll come for you…"

Count Bleck laughed in amusement. "All is according to plan, Count Bleck assures you."

Nastasia paused. "It's strange… Nobody ever, um, cherished the universe the way you once did… And yet, you've been made to destroy it…"

"That's quite enough…Nastasia." Count Bleck said.

Nastasia sighed. "If I could, um, I…" She whispered. Count Bleck heard her.

"You'd what?" Count Bleck asked out of curiosity, turning to face her.

"If only I could have, y'know, been that girl… Things would have been different…" Nastasia said.

Count Bleck shook his head. "She cannot be replaced. You could never hope to do so, Nastasia."

For a moment, Nastasia held an expression of surprise. "Yeah, um, I'm very sorry. That just slipped out."

Count Bleck sighed, and lowered his hat. "To be sure… She is gone… Gone from all worlds, never to return…" Count Bleck then left, reminded of his past.

Count Bleck's most promising minions had their own rooms in the seemingly massive castle. This included Mr. L.

It was as though Mr. L was dead and was not at the same time. When he had been thrown against the electric wall… all that stupid plumber's fault. Heh. At least he had done some significant damage to that worthless human.

Human… could he even be considered that by this point? His other life was long gone… what was his original name again? Bah, it didn't matter. Nothing mattered except the future.

Bill was whom he had to thank for all of this. When he got the chance, he would repay Bill in any way he could. But for now, he was resting. Well, both of them were resting. Mr. L slept in his bed, trying to rest and heal up. Bill would surely help with the healing.

Mr. L snored loudly. Sleep sure felt good. Soon, though…

He was in his mindscape. It was a vast beach, just him alone. Once Count Bleck's plan was complete, everything would be transformed into the perfect place. It was funny, he didn't even know Count Bleck's entire plan. It didn't matter, as long as the end result was what he desired.

He walked forward and lied down on the sand. Even though none of it was real, it sure did feel good… the slight breeze, the sun's rays, and the soothing sound of the ocean…

" Heyo, Mr. L!"

Mr. L jumped up in surprise. Oh. It was just Bill.

"Jumpy today, are we?" Bill said with a laugh. "Anyway, Mr. L, I just wanted to thank you!"

"Thank me?" Mr. L asked.

"Well of course, why wouldn't I? You've given me the biggest advantage I could ever have!" Bill explained. "Here, I'll let you in on a little secret." He floated closer to Mr. L. "You see, I can't exactly interact with the physical plane unless I have a vessel to do so with. And luckily for me, you just happened to be here! So, if you're thinking about paying me back, you've already done it!"

Mr. L smiled. "Really?"

" Yeah! You've been a lot more cooperative than my… other clients… And hey! I have my own grudge against Jumpman, so all of this works out perfectly!"

" Could you tell me what this 'grudge' is?"

"Sorry, Mr. L," Bill answered with a cheeky laugh. "But some things are just better left secrets for now. Anyway, you should probably rest up. You're going to see some big things soon! Anyway, bye bye! I have some of my old stuff to take care of." Bill floated up before disappearing.

Mr. L resumed lying down. It was peaceful, as it had been before. Hey… what would happen if he fell asleep inside the mindscape? Eh, it didn't matter. As long as he relaxed…



Mr. L's eyes shot open. Blackness. He stood up. Wh… where was he. It was nearly black, and in the sky was a very dark blue.

"Hello?" Mr. L called out. "Bill? Count Bleck? Anyone?" He walked forward. For the first time in a while, he felt… fear? Worry?

He paused. He heard something. Mr. L couldn't make out what exactly it was, but it was… something… A source of light to the right of him. He turned to it, and proceeded to walk toward it.

He was several feet away. The source of the light was also the source of the noise. He was a couple feet away. One foot. A couple inches.

One inch.

He kneeled down and looked at it. What just was that noise? It sounded like… buzzing? He tentatively reached his hand out to the light on the ground.

A gloved hand similar to his own at once somehow reached from under the floor, grabbing Mr. L's arm. Mr. L screamed, and tried to pull his arm away. He couldn't. The other arm started to pull him in hard. Mr. L pulled back harder.

Mr. L finally managed to break his arm free. He stumbled onto his butt. Right now, he was vulnerable. No help from anyone, not even Bill.

Another hand rose from the light. The noise stopped. A head rose, followed by a torso and legs. Mr. L moved backward as the figure's head rose. It looked at him.

"Wh-what are you?" Mr. L asked in fear. The figure walked toward him. Mr. L soon stood up. He finally able to see what the figure was. It… looked like him?

"You really don't know who I am?" The figure asked as it walked closer. "I'm you."

" What?"

"You locked the actually sane part of you in here." The figure pointed to his head. "Thankfully, I can see that you're here now, so I can try and talk some sense into you."

Mr. L frowned. "I don't have any time for what bullshit is going to spew out of your mouth."

"You think I'm the one 'spewing bullshit'?" The figure said. "Bill is the one spewing bullsh-"

Mr. L slapped the figure across the face. "Don't you dare talk about Bill, like that ever-"

"No, YOU don't talk about him like he's some sort of guardian angel!" The figure screamed, taking Mr. L aback. "You really think that… triangle is worth trusting?"

"…Yes." Mr. L answered.

"… You really think he's worth trusting? Like a friend? Well, let me tell you, 'buddy.'" The figure took a step forward. "If he was a 'friend', then why hasn't he healed you of your injuries yet?"

Mr. L didn't have an answer.

"And was it really worth it to do all of this in the first place? Turning against everyone you know and love? Nearly killing your own brother? Siding with someone that…" The figure closed his eyes. "You wanna know something about Bill? Well, let me tell you. B-"

Mr. L didn't want to hear any of it. He punched the figure in the face, knocking it out. He stormed away.

Though as he did, all of the words the figure said echoed in his mind.

One new feeling soon filled him.


" What… What are you thinking? There's no possible way… No one would allow it!"

" If we can't be happy here, we must leave for a place that will accept our love."

" But, Blumiere, is there such a place? Think… I can't bear to see you hurt again."

" If our love has no home… let us spend our lives searching together!"

" So I beg of you again… Timpani, marry me! I promise I will make you happy."

" You…just won't give up, will you? Of all the crazy… stubborn…foolish men…"

" Timpani, answer me, please!"

" Blumiere, I love you. Take me to a world where we can be happy."


What was that… birds?

Yes, yes it was.

Mario's eyes opened. This… was not what he expected. He was back in the Mushroom Kingdom? …He didn't really remember too much at the moment, and frankly, he didn't care. It would be nice to get some fresh air.

But where in the kingdom was he? At the moment, he was in a large, sprawling field. What a perfect setting.

Mario stood up, and sniffed the air, taking in as much fresh air as he could. He exhaled, and began to merrily skip through the field. He hummed a random tune he made up.

Pretty soon, he came across a huge field of gorgeous flowers. He skipped around through them without a care in the world, enjoying every second of it. He eventually moved past the flowers. Wario and Waluigi, "rivals" to Mario and Luigi, soon walked up to the red-capped plumber.

"Hey, Wario, hey Waluigi!" Mario cheerily called out. "You ready for the tennis tournament coming soon?"

"You betcha!" Wario said. "This time, Waluigi and I will show those chumps who the true tennis champions are!"

"Great!" Mario made a thumbs-up. He then skipped past them. Everything just felt so good. Mario triple jumped, laughing the whole time. He didn't stop moving. It all felt so… exhilarating.

Mario soon got to Toad Town. Everything seemed so lively. He simply walked around, taking in all the sights. Nothing was wrong.

He soon got to Peach's Castle, where Peach herself was waiting outside, waving to him. His walk turned into a jog, which then turned into a run. He stopped as soon as he got close to Peach.

"Well hello, Mario!" Peach clapped her hands together. "I didn't expect to see you so early!"

Mario smiled. Even though it felt like it had only come to him a few minutes ago, he had something special planned for today. He was about to respond, when-

Multiple crashes were heard behind them. They both looked to see the cause. Dozens of those… Eliminators? Wait, how did he hear that name? Anyway, Eliminators had crash-landed into Toad Town, causing a huge panic.

Mario felt doubt. Would he be able to defeat all of them? Thankfully, he never needed to worry about that. Several airships swooped in. They quickly took care of the Eliminators, stopping the robots before they got anywhere near Mario.

Wait, airships? Oh yeah, Bowser had already sworn to help Mario, right… wait hang on that wasn't right… it couldn't be…

Mario quickly walked away, taking the long route to the castle courtyard. He closed his eyes as he walked, only to suddenly trip on something large. He fell over it, and then opened his eyes.

It was a gravestone… for Violet… What? Didn't he see her… wait, when did he last see her? Mario stumbled away from the gravestone. He ran, as far as he possibly could. He went into the woods. He didn't stop running.

He ran into a cave? Why did he do it? He… just felt like it. He walked forward, using his firebrand for some light. He paused as he walked to a wall that depicted…

Bill Cipher.

Enormous head pain.

Mario clutched his head. The part of the wall that had the drawing broke away, forming an endless, black void. It sucked in everything in sight, leaving Mario with no options.

Mere seconds after he was sucked in, Mario fell roughly onto a surface. The head pain only greatened. He didn't open his eyes.

All of these events moved by so fast. After several seconds, Mario opened his eyes. He was at his house. His house. Only one bed… The floor shook. Several cracks appeared, one of them getting big enough that Mario fell through it. He fell,

And fell,

And fell,

And fell,

And fell…


Chapter Text

Though the 5th Pure Heart had been collected, the remainder of the group that was awake didn't feel happy at all. No explanation would be suitable enough to ever redeem Mr. L for what pain he had inflicted onto Mario.

The group was in Flipside, having just gone through the door. For once, Merlon wasn't there to greet them, but they didn't have time to dwell on any of that. They rushed Mario down to the inn. The elevator wait felt like years.

The rest was a blur. Mario getting rushed to the inn, which was basically a mini-hospital… The rest of them had to wait outside. It was… quiet. A lot quieter than they would've liked…

"I can't believe we've already gotten five Pure Hearts…" Tippi finally said, at last breaking the unbearable silence. "This is turning into quite the collection…"

"…So, just three more, right?" Bowser asked. "We just have to collect three more?"

"Yes…" Tippi answered. "That said, we owe Squirps for helping us find this one… We should be grateful…"

"You know, Tippi…" Peach said. "Something seems different about you recently. You seemed a little more cheerful earlier… It was a nice change."

"Really?" Tippi asked. "Well, ever since you saved me from Fort Francis, I was feeling really good… It felt like I could just hang around with Mario forever… but now that he was…" She couldn't bring herself to continue.

Just then, Merlon exited his house. He noticed everyone, save for Mario standing several feet away. "So, you're all back? Except for… hang on, where's Mario?"

"He's at the inn." Violet answered.

"Oh? How come?" Merlon asked, concerned.

"Well…" Violet wasn't sure how to put it. "He… was stabbed in the arm."

"W-what? Who did this to him?" Merlon asked, afraid of what the answer might be.

"It was a man named Mr. L…" Tippi answered.

"…" Merlon couldn't answer. "I see. Other than… that… How was it this time, then? Did you find another Pure Heart in outer space?"

"Yes, we did." Tippi answered. "In fac-" She stopped as a flash of light erupted from her, only lasting for a second. She made a noise, and then slowly fell to the ground.

"What happened to her?!" Junior asked, worried.

"Tippi!" Merlon yelled, rushing over to the fallen butterfly. "What has happened? All of you, come to my house at once! Hurry, now!" Merlon picked up Tippi and rushed into his house, the others right behind him.

Once inside, Merlon set Tippi down on a pedestal. He paused. "Very well, let's all take a breath and gather ourselves here… I'm concerned… Tippi may be unable to maintain her Pixl form for much longer."

"Her Pixl form?" Bowser asked. "What the heck does THAT mean?"

"Well, you see, Tippi was not always a Pixl…" Merlon begun to explain. "I found her in her true form, exhausted, cursed to wander through dimensions forever… She was hanging by a thread, barely alive…so I took a desperate measure… Using my ancestors' magic, I transformed her soul into a Pixl…and this Tippi was born."

"I can hardly believe it…" Peach said. "So where is Tippi from originally, then?"

Merlon closed his eyes. "She had lost her memory, so I have no idea who she is or where she is from… But I can't help thinking she did not come here by chance. Fate connects us… And my intuition in this area is rarely mistaken."

"So, is it like how me and Violet meeting Timmy was fate?" Junior asked.

"Yes, in fact." Merlon answered. "And who knows, maybe in the future fate will bring you to even more friendly faces!"

Before anything else could happen, the ground shook once again. Several seconds passed before it stopped.

"The Void has grown larger." Merlon said. "And these tremors have become common, I'm afraid. Our situation grows more dire by the moment. Will the events written in the Light Prognosticus really forestall the foretold doom?"

Merlon turned to face Tippi. "I will watch over Tippi. Young heroes, take the Pure Heart… Find the next Heart Pillar, and make sure Mario is alright!"

And so, the heroes set off to find the next Heart Pillar. But… they had previously checked through all of Flipside, right? So… where else could it be?

They started by going downstairs, and noticed a part of the wall that they could use Fleep on. They used the Pixl, and the wall became a long walkway. They walked down it, going to a small building. Inside the building were various stained glass paintings and 8 blocks, each one a different color.

By hitting each block exactly one time, the glass in the middle of the room shattered, though there was no glass to be found after the fact. Now that the glass was gone, they could go to the other side, where there was a door that they soon went through.

On the other side was a walkway, eerily similar to the one used to get there. In fact, the whole area around them… felt very similar to Flipside. The colors were slightly off, and the location of everything seemed to have been turned around, like looking at the other side of a goldfish bowl.

It wasn't until they got to a house that looked very similar to Merlon's that they got their answer. Standing outside of the house was a person that looked very similar to Merlon.

"I welcome you!" The Merlon lookalike said to the group. The group walked closer. "I knew you would come by eventually!"

"So… where are we?" Violet asked.

"Ho oh! I knew you would ask me that!" The Merlon lookalike laughed. "This place may seem like Flipside, but do not be mistaken! You WERE in Flipside, but then you flip-flopped sides… Friends, you are in Flopside! Which means that I am not the Merlon you know. I am the Flopside version, a different Merlon entirely… You may call me…Nolrem!"

"I'm… having a little trouble understanding this." Peach said.

"Don't you see?" Nolrem asked. "Ours has always been a story of two towns… But the only ones who know about this flip-floppery are Merlon and I!" The others looked perplexed. "You seem a bit surprised. There is a front and a back to all things, young ones. Now, the Heart Pillar is one floor up! Go and place the Pure Heart within it! See you!"

The group thanked Nolrem for the information as he headed into his house. The group went up to the next floor, and there it was, the Heart Pillar.

Bowser currently held the Blue Pure Heart. He put it in the Heart Pillar. When he did, it glowed blue, and then a blue beam shot up into the sky.

"You appear to be performing your duties efficiently!" Nolrem said from behind them. The group turned around to face him. "I just got a message from Merlon. Tippi's been revived! The two of them and Mario are at the Inn in Flipside. Hurry! You must go there!" Nolrem walked away.

And so, the group used the Return Pipe to return to Flipside, hopeful that Mario and Tippi would be okay.

It was then that Mario woke up.

A sudden explosion of colors, lights, and other senses nearly overloaded his senses as his eyes opened. It was a moment before it registered. The dulled pain in his right arm and his nose… What exactly happened again?

Oh yeah.

All of it quickly came back to him. The fight with Mr. L. The aftermath. Just… why… That was a question he couldn't answer. Why.

He couldn't dwell on that right now. So, it looked like he was in Flipside, inside of the Inn he had slept in every night since the start of his journey. He looked to his right. His arm was bandaged up with yellow gauze partially stained red, making part of it look orange, and he could feel stitches in where the wound was.

He tried to sit up. He soon managed it. To his left were Tippi and Merlon.

"Mario… you're awake." Tippi said. "I'm… so glad… you're awake…"

"Mario, do you feel well?" Merlon asked.

Mario paused. "Well, aside from my arm and partially my nose, I'm… alright, I guess."

"That's good…" Tippi said.

"Mario, there's something I need to tell you. Tippi, could you step out of the room for a minute?" Merlon asked. Tippi left the building. Merlon told Mario what he had told the rest of the group earlier.

"I see…" Mario said once Merlon was finished explaining. "Have you found out any leads as to where she might be from?"

"Sadly, no." Merlon answered. "Only time will tell if we do find out."

Soon enough, the door opened again. Tippi, along with the other four who had returned walked in.

"Mario! You're alright!" Peach said. "How do you feel? Is your arm alright?"

"It… hurts." Mario answered. He slowly stood up. "Are there any painkillers I can take?"

"I'm sure that the nurse has some." Violet answered.

Mario was quickly relieved from the inn, under the promise that he take the painkillers regularly, and come back to get the stitches taken out in several days… If he were even still here in several days.

The group went up the elevator and went to the newly-made blue door. Before they went through, Merlon caught up with them. "Hang on, Tippi!" Merlon said. "Are you sure you feel well enough, my dear?"

"I'll be fine. This is no time to stay in bed anyway." Tippi answered. "And I… I want to be near Mario…"

"Then I will not hold you back. These good people will surely need your knowledge…" Merlon said. "Heroes. Please take good care of Tippi. And Mario, make sure to take care of your arm. Now go! Finish your work!"

The group nodded, and headed through the door, unsure of what trials and tribulations would await them on the way to the sixth Pure Heart.

Jorgen suddenly held his head and closed his eyes for a few seconds, like he just sensed something had happened outside. "I just felt a disturbance in the Fairy Force." Jorgen explained. "Like a thousand fairies just cried out in agony! We must quickly decipher part 2 of the prophecy, find the wand, and stop the Darkness… again!"

Mark picked up a lone pair of glasses that lie on the ground, and put them on. In front of him was strange images that resembled half-brains, each one turned in a different direction.

"It says…" Mark began to read the strange symbols. "The second wand lies on the dark side of the blue moon."

"Wait, it's written in Yugopatamian?" Timmy asked.

"Shaa," Mark answered, taking off the glasses. "Which I gotta tell ya, it's kinda freaking me out."

Timmy looked up, and saw more strange symbols written on the ceiling. "So, does anyone know what those mean?" He pointed to the ceiling.

"I have absolutely no idea." Jorgen quickly said. "Also, I think my mole vision just saw those stalagmites move." Jorgen gestured over to three stalagmites on the ground.

But when he did, they glowed a harsh red and morphed into different shapes, before finally taking the forms of two Eliminators. Without any hesitation whatsoever, the three Eliminators unleashed their vortexes and snatched all of the Fairies' wands.

"Our wands!" Jorgen yelled. Before the wands were sucked into the vortex, the Lead Eliminator grabbed them. The Lead Eliminator extended out its hand and unleashed a net, capturing the four fairies in it.

"Ah! Hold me Turner!" Mark yelled, grabbing onto Timmy.

"You have no power now, Chosen One." The Lead Eliminator said, walking toward Timmy and Mark. The two walked backwards, bumping into the wall. "And I will finally eliminate you, and then that other annoying brat, so no one will be able to stop The Darkness." The Lead Eliminator's hand morphed into a laser gun.

Timmy and Mark screamed. But then, something that could only be called a miracle happened. As Timmy and Mark pressed against the wall, a large, pink, rosy portal appeared. It quickly sucked them in, and then disappeared, leaving nothing behind.

The Lead Eliminator's expression went from angry to surprised. "What?!"

"We didn't see that escape portal earlier." One of the two other Eliminators excused.

"And I have the eyes of a puma." The other Eliminator added.

"Put these with the others." The Lead Eliminator commanded. "Then find and eliminate Timmy Turner and those Crystal Gems."

"What does he mean by… others?" Wanda cautiously asked, unsure if she wanted to find out.

When Lion had taken Steven and the Gems back to the barn after their visit to the Moon Base, Peridot inputted the coordinates into the drill, and then started walking into the barn. Steven and the other Gems stood next to the drill, though Pearl had taken out a telescope and was looking into it.

"Hey P, whatcha looking at?" Amethyst asked, noticing how Pearl kept looking into the telescope.

Pearl stopped looking into the telescope. "When we were on the Moon Base, I thought I saw something… I've been looking in here to see if I can find it again, but because of how dark it is, I've had no luck."

"Let me see." Garnet said. Pearl moved over so Garnet could look into the telescope. "Hmmm…" Garnet was deep in thought.

While the Gems were focused on that, the only thing Steven was focused on was the object Peridot currently held, as he saw her try and sneak into the barn with it. Steven followed after her.

When Steven got to the door, Peridot immediately noticed him, and hid the object behind her back. "Oh, hey Steven!" She nervously said.

"Peridot, I need to talk you." Steven said, a determined look on his face.

"Uh… yeah, sure!" Peridot nervously smiled, still hiding the object behind her back. Steven motioned for Peridot to go into a car that no longer worked. Steven got in the right side, and Peridot got in the right side.

"Why are we in this broken down vehicle?" Peridot asked.

"I wanted to ask you…" Steven eyed her right arm. "About the Diamonds?"

"Oh, I don't know what the others have told you, but there's a reason they're in charge." Peridot explained.

"Why's that?" Steven asked.

"They're objectively better than us." Peridot answered. "Every gem has their strengths and weaknesses. But not them. They're absolutely, totally, completely, flawless beings! Especially my Diamond. Yellow Diamond. The most perfect, the most rational, the most reasonable decider ever to exist in the universe!"

Steven sat in thought. "You're really loyal to her, aren't you?"

"How could I not be? We might have our little 'truce', but I'll never forsake the Gem I was made for." Peridot smiled at her mention of Yellow Diamond.

"That's good, cause…" Steven pointed forward. "She's right behind you!"

"What?" Peridot quickly asked. She turned around.

The second she did, Steven snatched the object she held, now getting a clear view of it. Peridot gasped, but before she could do anything, Steven ran out of the car, locked it, and slammed it shut. Peridot panicked.

"Save your strength." Steven said. "You're up against one of the Earth's greatest trapping technologies. The child safety lock!"

Peridot gasped and looked around her, seeing no way out of the car. "No, no, how could you do this to me? The great and lovable Peridot! I thought we were finally friends like you wanted!"

"I saw you sneak this," Steven held up the object. "Off the Moon Base while no one else was looking! What is it? Tell me!" He demanded. From his view, Peridot looked like a mere shadow, only her Gem and eyes giving off light.

"It's nothing special, and definitely not important at all." Peridot lied with a glare.

Steven looked at a lone hammer that lied on the ground, and picked it up. "Alright," He raised the hammer. "Then why don't I just smash it!" He said, ready to shatter the diamond-shaped object into a thousand pieces.

"Nonononono wait!" Peridot quickly yelled, pressing up against the window. She sighed. "Alright look… I have a plan. Allow me to explain. It's… a communicator. Meant for the express purpose of contacting the Diamonds back on Homeworld."

"You're still trying to contact Homeworld?" Steven asked, reminded of the many attempts she had made back when she was constantly on the run from Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl.

"Yes, of course!" Peridot answered, which unnerved Steven. "I've figured it out. You simple clods keep trying to protect the Earth, but you can't do anything right! I let myself get carried away too. Laughing, singing, building our little machine."

Steven's eyes narrowed.

"But don't you see?" Peridot continued. "None of that matters! All that matters is that I'm of use to Yellow Diamond! This planet can be of use to Yellow Diamond! I must contact her, to reveal what I've discovered!"

"But the Diamonds are bad! They don't care about the Earth!" Steven yelled. "They wanted to hollow it out and now they want to blow it up with the Cluster!"

"Yes, yes, that's the point!" Peridot responded.

Steven groaned. "Why do I keep sticking my neck out for you?" He grew angry, and clutched the communicator hard. "You're never going to be on our side! Garnet, Amethyst, Pearl!" He ran to the door, ready to tell the Gems exactly what had transpired here.

"Wait, no, don't!" Peridot yelled, though her efforts were futile. "STEVEN!" Steven closed the door, to the barn, drowning her out.

Though he thought what he just experienced was bad, he would soon learn what would be there to come would be much, much worse.

Still worried about Mario and Tippi's conditions, Mario and friends opened the fifth door.

They still needed to find three Pure Hearts…

But the imminent destruction of the world was approaching at an alarming pace.

Would Mario and co have enough time to save the day?

And what foul trick would Count Bleck and his goons come up with next?

This adventure grew more dangerous…and more thrilling… with every step!

Two locals in the Downtown of Crag stepped onto a rock formation and begun dancing. Many clouds littered the sky. In the background, many volcanoes could be seen. Several feet in the air, a blue door became visible. It slowly opened. Tippi was the first to come out.

"Oh, my! Where are we?" Tippi asked. She looked around. "Quite a nice view from here in midair…but I can't yet see the Pure Heart… Wait… midair?" She looked behind her. The others had already gone through the door, and subsequently fallen down. "Oh dear…" Tippi floated down to meet them.

On the ground, the two locals were still dancing on the rock. They were singing a strange tune.

"Brah! Big Rock Who Watches! Cragnons just little rocks! Cragnons need help! You hook Cragnons up, brah! Or Cragnons go CRONCH and then no more Cragnons!"

"End of all Cragnons coming! NO WAY! MUST CRAG ON! Save us Cragnons, brah!"

They sung some more, until the five heroes came crashing down on the rock between them. Luckily, they weren't too badly hurt.

"Oh, Crag!" One of the two Cragnons yelled.

"Wh-What in Crag?" The other one asked.

The heroes soon stood up, a bit dazed. Mario was the first to look around. 'Thank goodness I didn't land on my arm…' He thought. "Hey, what is this place?"

"I'm not sure, but it looks… prehistoric." Violet answered.

Tippi soon floated low enough to reach them. "…Are you all right?" She asked.

The two Cragnons were still shocked at what had just happened. "Whoa… Skarn! You see persons drop out of sky, brah?"

"Yah, Jasperoid… Thought I was losing my crag, brah. Persons shaped weird, huh?" Skarn replied. "Wait! You think maybe… persons sent down to help by Big Rock Who Watches?"

"Huh?" Bowser questioned. "What're you looking at, rocklips? You never seen a burly king of evil before?"

"And what do you mean, 'shaped weird'?" Peach added.

"Brah, these things look mad!" Jasperoid said. "If they start cragging out, I run! Serious. But…huh. Thought that Big Rock Who Watches would send persons…less ugly."

"Hey! Why'd you call us ugly?" Junior questioned.

"We take what we get, brah! Big Rock Who Watches must have plan for Cragnons." Skarn said, ignoring Junior.

"Point well cragged, brah." Jasperoid responded. Jasperoid and Skarn then basically pushed the group of five off the rock and toward a building despite their protests.

"You stop that this instant!" Tippi yelled, though her plea was met with dear ears. She sighed, and followed them.

The group was basically pushed into a house. It was the elder Cragnon, Marbald's house. The elder was very old, which was to be expected.

"Servants…of Big Rock Who Watches…" Marbald slowly said. "You big boulders, we just gravel bits…"

"Hang on a second, just where in the world are we?" Tippi asked. "And what are you…things?"

"This is land of Cragnons. Me Cragnon, him Cragnon, this land of Cragnons." Jasperoid explained.

"It not rocket science, brah. Anyway, big brah here is Marbald, chief of all Cragnons." Skarn added.

Marbald took a deep breath. "O great servants of Big Rock Who Watches… Cragnons having trouble down here… Serious. Bad. Big, big danger… One day…freak plant-people came… Nerd Cragnon named them Floro Sapiens. They kidnap many Cragnons… We were peaceful brahs… They give peace no chance… Rescue team of Cragnons… now need to BE rescued…

"We at the end of our crag… How do we save Cragnons? No ideas come to Marbald… and we keep losing Cragnons… This bad, brahs… Cragnons must work this out, Cragnons go ex… EXTINCT, BRAH! You prune Floro Sapiens… You save kidnapped buds… You hook Cragnons up…"

"I'm not sure if we have enough time…" Tippi said.

"I say we help them." Mario responded. "Who knows, it might also lead us to the Pure Heart."

"You do have a point." Violet said.

"Yeah, stomping fools is my business!" Bowser added. "Show me a fool, I'll stomp it! I don't even need a reason!"

Just then, another Cragnon nearly burst down the door in a panic. "Tuh-Tuh-Terrible, BRAH! King Croacus return!"

Marbald spun around. "Wha-Whaat?"

"Village Cragnons kidnapped!" The Cragnon explained. "Please… Cragnons need hooking up, brah…"

Marbald turned back around. "Servants of Big Rock Who Watches… You heard that, right, kind brahs? P-P-Please! You help! You hook up Cragnons! Hook up, PLEASE!"

The group agreed to help them, and walked outside. Upon doing so, they stumbled into two flower-like creatures, called Floro Sapiens. One of them was yellow, and the other was red.

"Hey, check it out, man! Haven't seen that one before, have we?" The yellow Floro Sapien asked.

"Yeah, for sure, must be some sorta rare breed or something, right?" The red Floro Sapien answered with his own question.

"Yeah, rare breed, totally!" The yellow Floro Sapien answered. "Sweet timing, too! We need a Pure Heart polisher! Score!"

Tippi noticed something. "Wait a minute! These odd creatures seem to know about the Pure Heart!"

"Our super-mighty leader, King Croacus, will be STOKED to have a rare breed!" The yellow Floro Sapien said. "Let's tenderize them a bit and tote them back, dude!"

Of course, the two Floro Sapiens were outnumbered, so the group was easily able to take them down with barely any effort at all.

"Hmm… Seems as though the leader of these uncouth things has the Pure Heart…" Tippi pointed. "We'd best try to find him…"

A sudden cry for help caught their attention. They looked ahead, and saw several Floro Sapiens carrying Cragnons to who knows where, presumably their base. And so, the group carried onward, hoping to stop the Floro Sapiens and get the Pure Heart. Even with Mario's arm being injured, they should still be in good shape… right?

Steven carried the communicator over to Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl, ready to expose Peridot's plan. As he did, he noticed how Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl sort of stood there, looking straight ahead. When the three of them saw him, they instantly looked toward him.

"Garnet, Amethyst, Pearl… Peridot took this Diamond communicator from the Moon Base." Steven explained to the three gems. "She was going to try and contact Yellow Diamond with it."

"Oh, thank you Steven." Pearl said, simply taking the communicator.

"So, should we destroy it… or maybe hide it or-" Steven listed off, before Garnet interrupted him.

"We should keep it. For safekeeping." Garnet said.

"Oh… well maybe we should bubble it and put it in the Temple?" Steven asked. "After all, that would be-"

"We said we're safekeeping it!" Pearl suddenly yelled, cutting him off.

"Yeah, can't you hear her?" Amethyst scoffed.

Steven was about to question the Gems' odd behavior, until he heard several obnoxious car alarm sounds coming from inside the barn. Steven groaned. "I see she knows what a horn is, now."

Steven noticed how even after several seconds, the Gems didn't respond. "Uh, what should we do about Peridot? Guys?"

Garnet looked down at Steven. "What do you think we should do?"

Steven froze. "Garnet… I thought Rose told you to not ask any questions…" He said uncertainly, remembering the story Garnet told him the previous night. He noticed the Gems wearing pink belts, ones that hadn't been there before he confronted Peridot. "And what are those pink things you're wearing?"

The three 'Gems' frowned. Steven narrowed his eyes. "You three aren't Garnet, Amethyst, or Pearl! You're just a bunch of fakes!" He continued to accuse. "Who really are you three? And what'd you do with the real Gems? Huh? Tell me!" A few tears welled up in his eyes and then fell down.

"…" 'Garnet', 'Amethyst,' or 'Pearl' had nothing to say for a couple seconds, before…

"This charade has ended." 'Garnet' said. The three figures standing in front of Steven begun to morph, taking on their true forms. Eliminators.

"Eliminate Steven Quartz Universe." The three of them spoke at once.

"W-What?" Steven quickly said, stepping backward. "What do you mean, eliminate?" Before his question was answered, something equally as horrifying happened.

He heard a sudden explosion coming from the barn. He turned around. Part of the wall and ceiling on the right of the barn had been destroyed. Tons of smoke poured out from it as a large silhouette emerged. The smoke soon cleared, and there was Peridot in her large mech that she had built several days ago, in a battle to see if her or Pearl would be able to lead the project.

"Free, free!" Peridot chortled. "Your invisible rotary shield was no match for me, once I applied logic!" Using the mech, she reached into the barn, grabbed the car, and threw it at Steven and the three Eliminators.

Steven ran out of the way before the car could come crashing down onto him. The Eliminators, on the other hand, brought out their blasters, and zapped the car, turning it into dust.

"Yikes!" Steven yelled. Seconds soon felt like minutes as the realization dawned upon him that whatever these things were, were a lot more powerful than he thought. He ran over to Peridot. "Peridot, wait!"

"No! I'm not going to wait until I contact Yellow Diamond!" Peridot yelled.

Steven looked forward. The three Eliminators were coming upon him, and fast. He jumped. His airtime was higher than he thought. The Eliminators flew right past him. He landed on top of Peridot's mech.

"Get off! You're going to compromise my plan!" Peridot yelled. She swung the mech around, trying to get Steven off. Soon, she did, causing Steven to go tumbling to the ground. "Where's that communicator!"

"I don't have it!" Steven yelled, standing up. He heard lasers. The Eliminators were coming back. Steven summoned his bubble, and just in time, too. The lasers hit the bubble, popping it, causing Steven to go flying into the wall of the barn, dazing him for a moment.

"Just what are those things?" Peridot yelled. She tried to get a closer look at them, and she saw… "Oh my stars!" One of the Eliminators held the Diamond Communicator. In her mech, she ran toward the Eliminators.

"Wait! Peridot!" Steven yelled. But it was futile. Peridot extended the right claw of the mech toward the Eliminators. Big mistake. The Eliminator closest to her shot a blast of red energy at the arm, causing it to go flying off of the mech. It soared in the air for several seconds. With a large CRASH, it landed on the drill. The one they had all worked so hard on…

And now the drill was unusable. All of that progress gone in an instant.

"Hey! I spent precious time building that arm!" Peridot yelled, frustrated.

The Eliminators weren't finished yet. They ran to the mech, and before Peridot could react, threw it aside. The Eliminators immediately refocused their attention on Steven.

"Eliminate Steven Quartz Universe." The Eliminators repeated. They flew toward Steven.

Steven, in a panic, summoned his shield. The Eliminators hit it, knocking him back. Steven quickly shoved the large shield against the Eliminators, pushing them back, and while they were distracted, ran into the barn.

Steven scanned the barn, looking for a place to hide. Several boxes laid in the corner of the barn. Steven ran over to the boxes. They were just big and tall enough for him to hide behind. He hid.

And not a moment too soon, as the Eliminators just then flew into the barn through the large hole Peridot previously made. They scanned the room. When they didn't see Steven, they walked around the room. Every second that they were in there was like several minutes to Steven. In desperation, as quietly as he could, he pulled out his cell phone, went to his contacts, and got to Connie's number. He began texting her, quickly detailing a message that briefly explained the current situation.

He hit send.

The second he did, his cover was blown. All of the boxes he hid behind were soon blasted away, and a moment later, his phone also got blasted, rendering it utterly and totally useless. The Eliminators advanced toward him.

Steven summoned his shield. One of the Eliminators grabbed his shield and tossed it aside. There was nothing else Steven could do.

As Peridot's mech quickly fell to the ground, the green Gem inside screamed at the top of her lungs. As the mech made contact with the ground, it exploded, sending Peridot flying in the air, still screaming. Several seconds later, she fell to the ground, tumbling down a large hill. A few moments later, she slowly stood up.

"…Stupid Steven clod…" Peridot grumbled, walking up the hill. "Stupid robot clods…" She narrowed her eyes. "Stupid gem Diamond contact communicator whatever clod!" She kicked up some dirt from the ground in rage.

She paused. "I need to get back to that barn." Her pace quickened. "There's still a chance!" She broke into a run.

Several minutes later, the barn was finally in view. "There's no one here…" Peridot noted. She walked into the barn through the giant, gaping hole in the side. No one else was in there. It felt weird… to be alone in there.

"Whatever, those clods don't matter anymore." Peridot muttered to herself. "They were all just a huge waste of time!" She walked upstairs, remembering where she left her tape recorder. On the sofa. She grabbed it.

"Log Date 7 14 2," Peridot began, speaking into the tape recorder. "I had previously concocted a plan to steal the communicator from the Moon Base, but Steven found out and ruined it all." She walked downstairs. "And then those Crystal Gems decided to turn into robots and turn on Steven. I still don't understand that part."

She walked outside, this time going out the doors. "And I can see that the drill we had to make twice is ruined, again. It's not like they're here to see any of this." She paused. "And now, I have a new, much better plan! I'm going to find a better, much more efficient plan! I'll just find another way to get off this planet!"

Peridot laughed, realizing the genius of her plan. "All I have to do is just find a ship or something, and then I'll be home free! Goodbye stupid barn! I'll never miss you!" She cackled as she ran off, determined in her plan, which she thought would surely be a success.

Chapter Text



The Eliminators had taken over Abracatraz, putting every fairy they caught in the cells. Since there were only so many cells and a ton of fairies, there was a bit of overcrowding.

"You cannot keep all of Fairy World locked up!" Cupid yelled from one of the cells. "Love always conquers Darkness!"

"And my sexiness can never be contained!" Juandissimo added.

In the cell right next to them, Cosmo, Wanda, Poof, and Jorgen got thrown in, and the cell gate soon shut, leaving the four of them locked in.

"What are we going to do?" Wanda questioned. "We're locked in Fairy World's maximum security prison, Abracatraz, and who knows what happened to Timmy!"

"Well, we did see him go through that pink portal." Cosmo pointed out.

"Hmm…" Jorgen was deep in thought. "I could've sworn I've seen a portal like that somewhere before…"

Just then, four other things were thrown into the cell. They were small enough that they fit in between the bars, and they made a loud noise as they hit the ground. Jorgen immediately recognized what they were, but he refused to believe it. The four items that were thrown into the cell were… gems. A pearl, ruby, sapphire, and amethyst.

"Um, just what are those?" Wanda asked, raising an eyebrow and pointing to the gems.

"If I'm correct…" Jorgen begun. "Then they're the Crystal Gems."

"You've told me and Cosmo about them before." Wanda responded. "Didn't they-" She stopped as the gems on the ground started to glow brightly.

Light formed around the gems as they resumed their own forms, the ruby and sapphire forms fusing into one. And then, Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl were finally back.

"What happened?" Amethyst was the first to speak. "I feel like I just got hit by a truck…"

Cosmo suddenly screamed. "Oh no! It's an alien attack! They're going to poison our crops and then put us trial, and then-"

"Cosmo!" Wanda yelled. "Didn't you hear what Jorgen just said?"

Pearl frowned. "Hang on a second… If fairies are here… then that must mean…"

"The Darkness is back." Garnet also frowned.

Jorgen sighed. "I'm afraid so."

"But I thought…" Pearl said, unsure of what to make of these new developments. "That Rose…"

"Um, can we put things on pause for a moment?" Amethyst asked. "Just what is, 'The Darkness'?"

"You weren't around yet when The Darkness attacked thousands of years ago, Amethyst." Garnet explained. "It was a memory that we're not fond of."

"I'll try to explain." Jorgen said. "The Darkness is a very powerful entity, its origins unknown. It's a large, swirling, black and red cloud of evil darkness. And, it used robots called Eliminators in order to help spread it's destruction everywhere it went. It was only a miracle that our fairy soldiers were able to repel it."

"That sounds really bad." Amethyst commented.

"It's much worse than you think." Pearl replied. "And for it to come back at a time like this… Right when we're dealing with The Cluster!"

"Can we pause things again?" Cosmo asked. "What's a Cluster?"

"According to Peridot…" Garnet begun to explain. "The Cluster is a huge, Earth-destroying geo weapon that was embedded into the Earth thousands of years ago, made up of millions of fused Gem shards. It's impossible to tell when The Cluster will be ready to take its shape, which is why we have to get rid of it as soon as possible."

"So, that's why I had a bad feeling about it…" Jorgen said to himself.

"But how come none of us knew about it?" Wanda asked about it. "And when we went to the Cave Of Destiny," She gestured to the three Gems. "They weren't anywhere on it, despite them acting like they were a part of it!"

"Don't look at me, I just followed what was on the murals." Jorgen responded.

"Hm, I bet if we had our wands, we could probably poof the Cluster away." Wanda suggested.

"I'm afraid that's impossible." Jorgen said. "You've never been told this, but fairy magic is unable to affect Gem magic, and vice versa."

"Why?" Cosmo asked.

"I don't know, I can't answer every question!" Jorgen answered.

"Hmm, that must be why I can't summon my spear." Pearl said. "When fairy magic counteracts Gem magic, it prevents us from summoning our weapons. On the flipside, it prevents any wishes fairies make from having an affect on Gems."

"Which would prevent the Cluster from getting wished away." Garnet said, adjusting her glasses. "It just can't be that easy."

"So, what's preventing you from summoning your weapons right now and breaking all of us out of here?" Cosmo asked.

"If I could've, I would've already summoned my whip." Amethyst answered.

Pearl thought for a moment. "There must be a magic shield that we can't see, preventing us from summoning our weapons. It's the only logical explanation I can think of."

"Um, but if this is supposed to be a prison for fairies," Amethyst begun. "Then why would a shield that prevents us from doing Gem stuff be here?"

"I think we should stop questioning why stuff like that is here," Garnet said, walking toward the bars. "And start figuring out how we're going to get out of here."

"But without any magic or weapons, we're powerless!" Jorgen said.

"Then we're just going to have to bide our time and wait for the right moment." Garnet responded. "Cosmo, Wanda, Jorgen, I'd like to hear how you got here."

"Well, we were in The Cave Of Destiny, trying to figure out the location of the second wand needed to stop the Darkness." Wanda explained. "The Eliminators started using Fake-I-Fiers from Yugopatamia, allowing themselves to take on the form of anything, so they used that to sneak up on us, and capture us! The only two that were able to escape were Timmy and Mark…"

"Something similar happened to us." Pearl responded. "Steven and Peridot went into the barn for just a minute, and…" She paused.

"They ambushed us!" Amethyst finished.

"…Yes. They ambushed us." Pearl continued. "It was awful… we were unprepared… and they just poofed us within seconds!"

"The important thing is, is that Steven is safe." Garnet said. "We'll figure out a way out of here. But I think we might have some new visitors first."

"Is it just me, or is she being really cryptic?" Cosmo loudly asked. Wanda glared at him.

A beat passed. The seven of them were all locked in prison, at the worst possible time. The Cluster could emerge at any moment, and The Darkness was very well at large.

And in the sky, a certain Void continued to ever slowly grow…

At the Turner house, in Timmy's room, a pink, rosy portal opened. It quickly ejected Timmy and Mark, and then soon closed, disappearing.

"Cool, we're wall vomit." Mark commented. "Now what's going on, bro?" He yelled, questioning Timmy.

"The Darkness is trying to destroy me." Timmy explained. "So I have to find the second wand and destroy the Darkness first!" He paused. "And oh yeah, you're my new sidekick!"

"Yeah, no." Mark rejected. He grabbed the carton of weenies that lie on Timmy's bed, and with another tentacle, grabbed one of the weenies from inside the carton. "You see, it's the chosen uno," He held up the weenie. "Not the chosen duo." With another tentacle, he split the weenie in two.

Mark handed one half of the weenie to Timmy. "So you go out and battle the sucky bots while the not chosen one, that's me, will stay here and nosh on these tiny tubes of spicy flesh." Mark jumped onto Timmy's bed and began eating weenies.

Timmy narrowed his eyes. "May I remind you that you lost your entire planet to that thing!" He yelled. "And you read the prophecy." Mark looked at him. "Now, are you a man or a mouse?"

Mark paused, set down the carton of weenies, and then spun his Fake-I-Fier, turning himself into a mouse. "Like, squeak?"

"Fine, I'll do it myself!" Timmy yelled. He turned around. "At least last time I had some help. Now, the Darkness may have taken my fairies, but I have the wisdom of a really… smart animal!" Timmy glanced at Mark, who attempted and failed to get an entire weenie into his mouth.

"And I have the speed of a really… fast animal!" Timmy added. "And I will not be fooled by their surprise attacks!"

"Oh, Timmy!" Two simultaneous voices rang from downstairs. His mom and dad, even though they had supposedly gone on a vacation. "We have a surprise for you!"

Timmy then raced downstairs to see that Terrance and Tamara were standing, facing away from him while wearing beach clothes. "Surprise? What's my surprise? Boy wants surprise!" Timmy quickly said while jumping up and down.

Terrance and Tamara turned around, unnatural smiles etched onto their faces. "Here it is." They both said. Their smiles turned into frowns. A second later, their eyes turned green and their voices became robotic. "Eliminate Timmy Turner." Large vortexes appeared from their mouths.

At the sight of this, Timmy quickly fainted. Thankfully, Mark came running in shortly after and stood in front of Timmy. "Back off, nasty sucky bots!" He paused, realizing he was still a mouse. "Wait, hold that though, brah."

Mark spun his Fake-I-Fier, turning himself into a kangaroo. "That's better." The Terrance and Tamara Eliminators' eyes widened. "Sucky bots, say hello to the Changaroo!" Mark jumped in the air, and kicked both Eliminators in the face, sending them flying to the other end of the room.

"Now say goodbye!" Mark said, grabbing a now awake Timmy and stuffing him into his kangaroo pouch. A second later, he jumped out the closed window, sending glass flying everywhere and landed outside.

In pursuit of the abducted Cragnons, Mario and co headed for the Gap of Crag.

What did the Floro Sapiens want? And where was King Croacus with the Pure Heart?

Despite their hustling pace, our heroes never caught sight of the Floro Sapiens.

But Mario didn't give up. Despite his right arm, he knew his fleet feet would catch them eventually…

Mario and co had been chasing the Floro Sapiens for quite some time, and were starting to get tired. Nevertheless, they continued their chase. After quite some time, they finally started to catch up to them.

"There! We've caught up to the fiends…" Tippi said.

Far ahead, the Floro Sapiens carried the Cragnons through a door, unrelenting in pursuing their goal.

In any other situation, by now, the group would've caught up with the enemy and subdued them. But for the time being, there was one problem. Mario's arm. It was still injured, so he had a harder time performing the moves he usually did. It did slow them down a little, but nobody minded, not even Bowser.

During their travel, they found a relatively deep body of water, and when they dove into it, they found a chest which had in it a small object called a "Water Tablet."

They then went through the door the Floro Sapiens had gone through not long ago. Once they went through, they saw the Floro Sapiens all jumping into a very tall pipe, one after the other. Somehow, once they were all in, the pipe sunk into the sand, and then a large yellow block moved over it, preventing access.

"…Disappeared down a pipe, did they?" Tippi asked.

"Apparently so." Mario responded.

Not even Violet's ice hammer was able to break the large block. Too bad they didn't have any other hammers… The only thing to do now was explore. They went to the left of the door they came through, first. There, they found a door not too far away on top of a hill.

After going through the door, in the next room they found a mostly open desert field littered with Stone Buzzys and Pokeys. A small valley was ahead, and at the lowest point was a small, black, flame shaped object. Bowser and Junior spewed fire on it, and the black part fell off, revealing the object to actually be the "Fire Tablet".

The group soon went back to where they came from, this time going to the right instead of the left. Soon enough, they found yet another door that they went through. And yet, not long after that, they heard a voice that was only familiar to Mario and Tippi.

"Showed at last, did yeh?" O'Chunks said, dropping down upon them. "GRA-BLAGHY!"

"Oh great… You again…" Tippi said.

"I've not been made teh wait like this since that fine lass stood me up long, long ago!" O'Chunks continued. "Yeh did this teh break me concentration, didn't yeh? Yeh likes the cheatin' eh? Sorry teh disappoint yeh! Yeh think I'd fall fer a bush-league move like that?"

"Oh, I'm afraid this fellow is terribly misguided…" Tippi added. The group then assumed fighting stances.

O'Chunks roared in frustration. " 'Misguided'? That's not even a real word, yeh squishy bug! Quit yer yappin', now! It's time for us teh settle this once an' fer all!"

"Wait," Peach whispered to Mario. "He's really the one you said was O'Chunks?" Mario nodded in response.

"You realize there are several of us against the one of you, right?" Violet asked. "You're going to get pummeled by all of us. Just step aside."

O'Chunks laughed in response. "Big talk fer some wee li'l girl! I'll be wanting an apology! In writin'! An' I want it written with yer FACE!"

Just then, another voice was heard. And it was one that… all of them recognized.

"Salutations, O'Chunks!" A second later, Dimentio teleported in, seemingly from nowhere, above everyone.

"Y-You…" Tippi stuttered. The rest of the group had mostly the same reaction as her.

"Ah! Once again we meet, like large, hairy Vikings on a storm-tossed schooner!" Dimentio said.

"What d'yeh want, Dimentio?" O'Chunks questioned. "I don't be needin' any help! Yeh'll just get in the way!"

"Ah, a quadrillion pardons!" Dimentio apologized. "Far be it from me to be a hinderance. Far, FAR be it! As it happens, I merely have an acquaintance in this land. I was just saying hello!"

"Sayin' hello, eh?" O'Chunks asked.

Dimentio raised his arms. "Yes, truly! And I saw you, and I thought, "Perhaps my magic can aid in this fight!"" Dimentio lowered his hands. A second later… All of them were back in Dimension D. "Ah, rest assured, I'll hardly be underfoot! You fight to your heart's content! Ciao!" Dimentio then vanished.

After a couple of awkward seconds, O'Chunks laughed. "Wuh… That doesn't sound too bad, I guess. Maybe I misunderstood that weirdo… Well, anyway, you lot are in fer it now! Meet the new-an'-improved O'Chunks!"

O'Chunks then charged at them. But as fate would have it, he would soon lose.

Violet quickly summoned a sword of ice. She and the others quickly stepped to the side, letting O'Chunks run right past them. Bowser ran at O'Chunks first, and jumped. O'Chunks couldn't react in time as Bowser landed on him, and then jumped off of him.

Then, Peach rushed forward, ready to strike with her parasol. Unfortunately for her, O'Chunks saw this, and quickly grabbed her and threw her at Mario before she could react. Mario didn't have any time to react either, before he saw Peach flying at him, forcing both of them to go to the ground.

Around a second later, Violet ran to O'Chunks from behind and she struck him with the blunt end of her sword, and at the same time, Junior had tucked into his shell, started spinning, and launched himself at O'Chunks.

"Mario, are you alright?" Peach asked, helping the plumber up.

"Yeah, I'm fine." Mario answered. Thankfully, he didn't land on his injured arm. He would have to watch out for that in the future.

Bowser soon rushed at O'Chunks, and punched him in the face. And that was it. The relatively easy battle was over. O'Chunks was too tired to continue. All of them were now out of Dimension D and back to the Gap of Crag.

"Blarg it all!" O'Chunks yelled. "Bad enough that yeh beat me once, but twice is too much teh bear! How can I show me face teh the count now, eh? I can't! Put me out o' me misery!"

"…Just because you're one of Count Bleck's minions doesn't mean we should…" Tippi couldn't finish her sentence.

"No, get on with it!" O'Chunks yelled. "I'm serious! I've no regrets! Well… No… Perhaps I do regret not confessin' me love teh that sweet lass… But no! That's no way fer a brave warrior teh talk when 'is time comes 'round at last! So… Do it! Now! Now! Finish me! End me game!"

"Well, salutations, O'Chunks! How are things, hm?" Yet again, that voice belonged to Dimentio. The jester himself soon appeared behind O'Chunks.

O'Chunks turned to face Dimentio. "Di-Dimentio! Look, honestly, this is kind o' important! How 'bout some privacy, eh?"

"Yes, yes, of course, I understand. Your honor must be satisfied…" Dimentio said. "But, O'Chunks… Before you let your game be over, humor poor little me for a bit. I have something I rather think you'll enjoy. I DO wish you would try it out for me."

"Yeh crazed loon! It's not the time fer…" O'Chunks started.

"Oh…it's not the time, hm?" Dimentio asked. "Not the time for something that will aid Count Bleck?"

O'Chunks put his hand on his chin in thought. "Oh… Fer the count, eh? Well, that do change a thing or two…" O'Chunks paused for several seconds, carefully thinking over his decision. "…Fine, then."

O'Chunks turned back around to face Mario's team. "You lot! You took enough of a beatin' fer today, so I'll let yeh off easy-like! I tell yeh this, though: yeh better work on yer skills by the next time we meet!"

"Wait, what about all that drivel about not showing your face to the count and such?" Tippi asked.

" 'Ey! Shut it!" O'Chunks yelled. "I live fer the count! I couldn't end me game without 'is say-so! My heart is weak, sure, so I'm done with it! From now on, I'm all brawn, and no brain! The past be nothin' teh me! All that matters is Count Bleck's future! All fer 'im! Chunks away!"

"Ah, it is time to part… Ciao!" Dimentio said.

And with that, both O'Chunks and Dimentio left.

The fact that O'Chunks and Dimentio were working together… just what was going to happen? Still, what would happen if… one of Count Bleck's minions were to… team up with someone much more powerful… nah, that wouldn't happen…

Nevertheless, the group continued forward. They couldn't focus on the "ifs", they had to focus on what they actually knew. And what they knew, was that they couldn't waste any more time. They had to get the rest of the Pure Hearts, and fast.

After all, the sky always held a constant reminder of it.

The group continued forward, and they soon found a large statue that resembled a Yoshi. On top of it was another tablet called the "Stone Tablet."

The group then went back to where they came, and found a path upwards, thanks to a ladder. On the upward path, there were three large pillars, each with a small opening that would fit one of the Tablets.

They put the Tablets in the correct spots, and a couple seconds later, there was shaking, but only for a few moments. And then, there was a voice they heard that sounded like a Pixl.

"Hey! Yo!" The unknown Pixl said. There was a small flash of light, and then said Pixl, named Cudge, floated down to them. Cudge resembled a hammer. "Whuh? I'm gettin' nothin'…" Cudge said. "So… You…ignorin' me? Or was that a "yes"? Better try one more time… Please talk to me!"

"Ok, but you don't have to yell at us." Junior said.

"Nice! Sounds good." Cudge said. "Been a while since I heard voices. Been a while since I talked. Gotta tell people how ya feel or they dunno… Gotta talk or no one hears ya! So listen, weird question… You got a motto or what? Whisper it to me, huh?"

Mario shrugged, and whispered something to Cudge.

"Oh yeah… That's perfect!" Cudge said. "I am lovin' that! Real good wordin', real good timin'! It really got me right there! In the heart!" Cudge then floated upward, so that anyone who was listening would be able to hear what he said next.


"Really?" Violet asked Mario.

Mario shrugged. "It was the only thing I could think of to say."

Cudge floated back down to them. "So yeah, that's your motto… Words you live by, right? Right on! Good stuff! Feels like I know you now… What really drives you… Gotta say, it's inspirin'! Haven't felt like this in a while… Feels kinda like when I first became a Pixl! I gotta get on board this good-feelin' train! I'm stickin' with you!"

And just like that, the hammer Pixl Cudge had joined them. Thanks to Cudge, they were able to swing a powerful hammer whenever they pleased, which was convenient since they soon found it was strong enough to break the giant block that covered the pipe the Floro Sapiens went down.

And once they went down the pipe, they found themselves in a large cave, where the next part of their journey would await them…

It was the middle of the night she received the text.

Only several hours after she had returned home, courtesy of Greg, she had woken up around midnight with a text from Steven. It read:

connie see if you can find the gems ask greg where they are there are these robots that replaced them they destroyed the drill im not sure whats going on connie

At reading the text, she immediately tried calling Steven. It went straight to voicemail. Not even one ring.

Connie had quickly dashed downstairs, grabbed her pink sword and any other necessities, and called Greg. It took a few rings for the former rock star to answer due to the time she was calling. But when he did answer, and when Connie explained the situation, Greg immediately got into his van and sped over to Connie's house as fast as he could.

Of course, because of the small commotion Connie made, she accidentally woke her parents, Doug and Dr. Priyanka Maheswaran. But once Greg quickly arrived and told him the situation, they immediately understood and let her go, because after all, nothing had was going to happen, right?

Greg drove quickly to the barn. Once there, he and Connie got out of the van and looked around… the place where Steven and the Gems were once building the drill.

"What… happened here?" Connie nervously asked. She scanned the area. A large, mechanical arm had fallen on the drill, rendering it useless. A giant hole in the barn's wall was visible.

"Oh geez," Greg said, looking at said hole. "Andy's not gonna like this."

Connie walked inside the barn through the hole, Greg following behind her. It was… eerie. Just what had happened here? For a moment, nothing seemed out of the ordinary. But then, she spotted it.

Steven's phone, which was barely even recognizable, was lying there on the floor. Connie quickly rushed over to it and picked it up. "How'd this happened?"

"The only thing I know is that now I'll have to get him a new phone." Greg replied.

"Hmm…" Connie was in thought. "The only way we're going to have any clue where Steven is for us to investigate. Let's split up and look for clues."

"Right." Greg responded.

The two practically turned the barn upside down looking for any clue as to what exactly happened. But, to their dismay, the only clue they could find was simply the cell phone.

"Aw geez, what are we gonna do?" Greg asked. The two were now outside. "We don't have any clue where Steven is, or-"

"Hang on a sec, Mr. Universe." Connie interrupted, examining the remains of Steven's phone. "There's only one way Steven's phone could've gotten like this. A laser had to have shot it. At least, I think…"

"A laser, huh…" Greg said before thinking for a moment.

"And I think I might know who shot the blast." Connie added. "Take another look at Steven's last text. Around the middle of it, he mentions 'robots'. I think it would seem logical that it was one of those robots was what shot the laser at this phone."

"But what kind of person would make a robot that shoots lasers?" Greg asked. "And why would they go after my son? Or even the Gems for that matter?"

"I'm not sure about that." Connie responded. "Maybe we should go to Beach City. There might be some clues there."

"Good idea." Greg said, and got into the van, Connie following after him. Greg began driving.

"Did you ever wonder what happened to that one Gem that was with them, I'm pretty sure her name was Peridot?" Greg asked. "Whenever I saw her, she almost always carried that tape recorder with her."

"Yeah, she did…" Connie agreed. "…Hang on a second!"

"What? What is it?" Greg asked.

"Hmm…" Connie said. "I'm… thinking…" She paused. "I mean, doesn't it seem weird that Peridot's tape recorder is missing, but Steven's phone is there? I mean, if you were holding something, and then you panicked, wouldn't you probably drop it?"

Greg only shrugged in response.

"It might be a stretch, but I think Peridot might've left on her own. Maybe she must've hidden from the robots, and when they left, she ran, taking her tape recorder with her." Connie explained.

"If that's the case…" Greg began. "Then maybe she could be in Beach City?"

"Maybe she could be…" Connie said. "Alright, let's search Beach City."

Soon enough, the two of them finally got to Beach City and started driving around the entire city, trying to find any sign of Peridot anywhere they could. At one point, they passed by The Big Donut.

The Big Donut… Connie then remembered something Sadie told her during a conversation not too long ago.

Connie had walked into the Big Donut, about to order a couple of donuts. Walking toward the counter, she noticed that only Sadie was at the counter.

" Hey Sadie." Connie greeted. "Where's Lars? Did he take the day off or something?"

" Oh no, he and his family took a vacation. They went to a town in California called Dimmsdale." Sadie explained. "I believe they're going to be there for a around week or so."

After Connie bought her donuts, she stole a glance at the newspaper. And the headline…



Connie explained to Greg what she saw, and how the robot incident in Dimmsdale could relate to what happened at the barn. All in all, Greg was wholly convinced.

Connie soon called her parents to let them know she was going on a road trip with Greg. Greg, though, couldn't help but think back to something Rose told him so many years ago.

" Greg… something so awful happened so long ago. I don't know when or how, but it's bound to rear its ugly head around again sooner or later. I wish I could tell you more, but…

I made a deal not to."

Chapter Text

As soon as Timmy and Mark had landed outside, Timmy jumped out of Mark's pouch, and Mark turned back to his usual Yugopatamian self.

"Thanks for saving me, buddy!" Timmy said to Mark.

"Hey, it's what sidekicks do." Mark replied.

"And I will not get fooled again!" Timmy exclaimed. "Or believe what anyone says!" He marched triumphantly across his lawn, Mark beside him, until they both heard a feminine voice.

"Hi Timmy."

Timmy quickly turned around and saw his crush, Trixie Tang, applying copious amounts of lipstick. Once she was done, she tossed it to the side. "I thought I'd just stop over and smooch every part of your face under this gorgeous moonlight."

"Awesome!" Timmy cheered, quickly forgetting about his previous statement. He quickly ran over to Trixie, and went up to smooch her, closing his eyes. Trixie grabbed him in her arms and brought him closer to the ground.

"Kiss me, you…" Trixie began. That is, until her eyes turned a solid green, and her voice grew deep. "Fool!" A vortex quickly appeared from her mouth, dead-set on capturing Timmy.

But before that could happen, Mark grabbed "Trixie" with one tentacle, and Timmy with another, pulling them away from each other. "Dude!" Mark said, realizing that Timmy had just fallen for another trap.

"Cut me some slack; I've wanted to kiss her since kindergarten!" Timmy explained. Mark then set Timmy down.

A moment later, the Trixie Eliminator sat up. Another second later, the Terrance and Tamara Eliminators broke down the wall of the house and stepped outside. The three of them morphed back into their Eliminator shapes.

"Eliminate Timmy Turner." The three Eliminators spoke, ready to fire lasers.

Mark turned to Timmy. "Okay wisdom of a smart animal boy, what do we do now?"

After repelling O'Chunks, Mario and Co. followed the Floro Sapiens underground…

Was the hideout of the Floro Sapiens just up ahead?

" Wow, it's dark! And narrow!"

" Hey, who just kicked me?"

" Sorry. All me."

Our heroes followed the long, dark corridor, listening to the echoes of their own voices.

As they groped their way along, the light at the end of the tunnel grew brighter…

They had finally arrived at the inner sanctums of the Floro Sapiens…

The Cragnons kidnapped from Downtown of Crag had to be around somewhere…

Light shining off of crystals hanging from many different places was what allowed Mario and co to finally be able to see clearly, and thankfully too, since it looked like they had a long way to go through the cave.

Though they traveled throughout the cave for a little while, it wasn't too long before they ran into someone else, someone who was… a unique character, to say the least.

" "Coming to you live…from the foul darkness that the Floro Sapiens call home."" The person narrated. " "Lesser Cragnons would weep softly. No one has set foot in this cave and emerged alive. But some make history with sheer gall and willpower…and Flint Cragley is such a man!""

Just from the few sentences Flint spoke, Mario and co could tell that Flint was a strange character indeed.

"Cragley ho!" Flint continued. " "Into the Floro Sapiens Cave of Doom! A Flint Cragley Cragtrotting Adventure!"" Flint paused, as the group walked closer to him. "…No, no, wait a second. That'll never play well in the sticks. How about… Cragley ho! "Taste Danger! Flint Cragley Vs. a Recragginated Mummy in Floro Sapiens Central!" I wonder if that'll test well with the weekend audience… Those Cragnons are fickle…"

"Ah, excuse me… Sir?" Tippi asked.

Flint immediately turned around to face the group. "Cragley ho! "Suddenly…out of the cave mists…mysterious, slavering creatures lurched into view! Did they hope to dine on fillet of Cragley? Would our hero meet their mandibles? Tune in after this brief commercial break to witness the torrid conclusion!" …Great, cut, print, wrap it. Now what do you dolts want? What are you doing here?"

"Well, we're here to find our sixth Pure Heart." Mario explained, gesturing with his non-injured arm.

"Huh? That's what you're here for?" Flint asked, trying to make sure he heard correctly. "Spectacular. Just fabulous! All-time coincidence, that's what this is! Just great to meet fellow adventurers, really, it is. I'm ecstatic about this. Listen, call me Flint. I'm a heck of a guy to know! Best cragtrotter of our time!

"You may know me from "Flint Cragley, Cragtrotter," which airs weekly on crag-vision. That's why I pretended to be kidnapped! I'm filming another epic show! Unfortunately, my idiot crew wandered off somewhere… So unprofessional."

Flint Cragley walked forward a little, away from the group. "I turned away for a second, and they vanished into the foul blackness of this cave… The worst part is, they have the key that'll get me deeper into this infernal abyss! All of you! If you run into my crew, tell them I'm waiting and stomping impatiently! Pure adventure personified thanks you kindly!"

"Only if we run into them." Violet clarified.

The group then went forward, going through a pipe and then going down a couple of platforms. They soon saw a locked door, which they assumed needed the key Flint had been talking about. The group traversed further and soon went down another pipe, getting deeper into the cave.

The group quickly traveled through the cave, being sure to collect all of the coins, items, and everything else they could collect. They soon came across a door where on the other side was a mine-car they had to ride. Needless to say, almost everyone had fun riding it, except Bowser, who claimed it made him dizzy.

They went through a nearby pipe, but what they saw on the other side… chilled them. In a small room, there were at least a dozen Cragnons, brainwashed by having a Floro Sprout on their head. All of them had no other choice but to keep mining away in the small room.

Mario and co quickly left, and headed back on the mine-car. They went on a different path, this time heading to another door. Upon going through the door, they had another area to explore.

And soon enough, they found one of Flint's crew members. This one held up a large microphone, and his name was, strangely enough, "Hornfels". Upon seeing Hornfels, the group walked up to him.

"Whoa! Where in Crag you guys come from?" Hornfels asked, upon seeing the group. …Serious. Who are you, brah?"

"You're part of Flint's crew, aren't you?" Peach asked. "He's been looking for you for a while."

"Whuh? You know where director is?" Hornfels asked.

"Just for your information…" Bowser began. "He's at the start of the cave, right past a locked door."

"Oh, that where he is… Thanks. Hornfels head back now." Hornfels responded. "But first… You see other crew Cragnons? With little sprout on top of head? Floro Sapiens using sprouts to mind-control Cragnons… They see you, they attack! Don't let guard down, brah! Crag you later!" Hornfels then walked off.

The group then went back to the first door they came through by going through the mine-car again (this time, Mario was also starting to not enjoy it) and then continued forward. After a little while, they came across a large rock. They passed by it, and continued forward more.

Soon, they came across a large, yellow block that Cudge was able to break, revealing a door. On the other side was another mine-car that Mario and Bowser internally groaned at. Nevertheless, they went on the ride, and on the other side was a door, which yet again, once they went through had more cave for them to explore.

Soon enough, they found Flint's other crew member, Monzo, who held a camera. The group walked up to him.

"Hey. You not mind controlled?" Monzo asked. "You escape from "Processing Center," brah? Monzo maybe ought to take director there. Maybe sprout on head mellow him out…"

"You're one of that Cragley gentleman's crew members?" Tippi asked. "He's requested your return."

"Whuh? You know director?" Monzo questioned. Mario nodded, and then repeated the information that they told Hornfels. "So that where he was…" Monzo said. "Aww… He told Monzo, "Wait here!" But Monzo bet he forgot one second later. Job of Monzo really lame. Thanks, brah. Monzo head back now." Monzo then walked off, going to where Flint was.

Then, the group went all the way back to where Flint, Hornfels, and Monzo now were. And when they arrived…

" "In a miraculous turn of events, I was reunited with my faithful camera Cragnons."" Flint narrated again. " "But there was no time for celebration! We had to swoop to the aid of the kidnapped! With danger nibbling our heels, we ventured deeper into the forbidding cave…

"To do so, we used the key to the last unopened door in the forsaken labyrinth!" Flint turned to Hornfels. "So, um… You do have the key, right? Lemme grab that."

"Whuzzat? You cragging me? You never gave key…" Hornfels explained.

"Oh. Hm… Really?" Flint asked. He turned to Monzo.

"Whuh? What? Key?" Monzo asked.

"Yes, genius, a key." Flint replied, sarcasm laced on his voice. "Wait… Don't tell me you don't have it either!"

"Uh, yah, brah, had key, but…"

"Ah, yes, so you DO have it! Good show, good show, yes. Give it here. Quickly, now."

"No, brah… had key but not have key…"

"You… You lost it?!" Flint yelled. " "A tragic crew blunder ruins Cragley! Had the gods of adventure forsaken us?!"

"Nah, brah!" Monzo responded. "See… Cragley say, "You lose this, so Cragley hold onto it." Cragley got key, brah…"

"Preposterous!" Flint scoffed. "If such a claim were true, there would be evidence in my pocket, which there isn't!" To prove it, he searched his pockets, and lo and behold… A few seconds later, he pulled out the key.

"Cragley ho!" Flint exclaimed! " "A miracle struck! As if by magic, the long-lost key had returned to my pocket! The cave defied Cragnon comprehension! It was a place of purest miracles!" Lucky turn of events, finding that key… I'm sure everyone contributed somehow." At this, Monzo and Hornfels whispered amongst themselves.

"…You've gotta be freaking kidding me…" Junior said, almost speechless.

"Now, onward!" Flint said. "We must make our way to the last unopened door to the horrid depths… If my research is correct, and it always is, then this key should open that door. Of course, through the door may lie a trap that will devour us all…"

Flint then laughed nervously, and then quickly walked over to the group. "What's that? You say you want to open the door no matter what may lie in wait?! Tremendous! Such bravery!" Flint practically shoved the key into Junior's hands before the young koopa could say anything.

"I was planning on opening it myself, of course, but since you seem so passionate…" Flint started to explain. "Not that I'm afraid or anything. Don't be ridiculous. I mean, that's laughable. As a fellow cragtrotter, I know the heady thrill of the hunt! I'll yield to your lead!

"We'll head down first and await you by the door. Come down when you're ready. See you in two ticks!" Flint said, before he, Monzo, and Hornfels went ahead.

"Well, let's hope they won't waste any more of our time…" Tippi said.

The group quickly got back to the door, and used the key to it. And everyone except Junior groaned at what they saw. Yet another mine-car.

But, as Tippi said earlier, they shouldn't waste any more time, especially since Flint and his crew were travelling with them now. Time was of the essence. Every second wasted was a second less that they all had to save everyone. Only time would tell if they all would manage it, only time would tell…

"Hey, let go of me!"

Steven struggled against the Eliminators that were carrying him by his arms throughout Abracatraz. He woke up not too long ago to this.

"Come on, I said let go of me!" Steven yelled. "I can't even summon my shield or bubble or anything! Why can't I?" He looked around to his left and right. "What are all those strange creatures doing in those cells?"

"Hey, we are not strange!" Cupid called out.

"Oh, uh, sorry!" Steven quickly apologized.

It felt like they were carrying him for hours, though it was actually a lot less time than that. And soon enough, they carried him over to a large cell. It opened for a brief moment before the Eliminators quickly and roughly threw him in. Before Steven even hit the ground, the cell closed.

And before Steven could even stand up, he heard three familiar voices, and then was embraced in a hug by the owners of those voices.

"Garnet! Amethyst! Pearl!" Steven happily cried, tears starting to form, happy that now he was finally reunited with his true guardians. After several seconds, they stopped the hug and Steven wiped his tears away.

"Wait, who's that random kid?" Cosmo rudely asked right before Steven was about to say something.

"Cosmo!" Wanda chastised. "That's Steven, the Gems were telling us about him earlier!"

"Oh, right. Good times…" Cosmo said, reminiscing as if that happened a long time ago.

"Anyway…" Steven slowly said, a bit nervous, before his next sentences would become very fast. "What happened to you guys? Where are we? What is-"

"Steven." Garnet lightly interrupted. "Everything's fine. Just take it slow and tell us everything from the beginning."

"Well…" Steven started. "How'd you guys even get captured? Was it… because of those robots?"

"…Yes." Pearl eventually answered. "It was awful. They all were just… disguised as…" Pearl's hand almost went over her mouth, but retracted. "…As your mom, Steven. I had moved my telescope to see if I could get a better view of… what was it again?"

"That strange purple thing in the sky." Garnet answered.

"Hang on, strange purple thing?" Wanda cut in. "Isn't that The Void?"

"I thought Mario and his team were gonna take care of that," Cosmo began. "While Timmy just lazed around and watched movies all day." Wanda glared at Cosmo.

"What exactly is… The Void?" Amethyst cautiously asked.

"According to the information I have gathered, it was made by a man named Count Bleck." Jorgen started to explain. "He used a fake wedding of Princess Peach and King Bowser in order to summon the Chaos Heart, which in turn would summon The Void."

"Is The Void dangerous?" Steven asked.

"Of course it's dangerous!" Jorgen yelled in response. "If not stopped, then it could potentially destroy everything!"


"A-Anyway…" Pearl said, about to continue her story. "I moved my telescope, and then shortly afterward I saw… a couple of the robots, which are called Eliminators, and they were disguised, which caught me off guard."

"Amethyst and I heard the sound of a struggle, so we rushed over to where Pearl was." Garnet explained. "And by the time we got there…"

While Steven had walked into the barn after Peridot, Pearl had gone to the side of the barn to try to get a better view with her telescope. Garnet and Amethyst decided to stay back and relax a bit more, since they were so close to finally being able to actually use the drill and stop The Cluster.

However, the two of them soon heard a gasp, presumably from Pearl, a slap of a hand over a mouth, and then a struggle. By the time Amethyst and Garnet got there…

Pearl was poofed, and shortly after, her Gem was sucked into the vortex of what they would later know as an Eliminator. Not a second later, Amethyst summoned her whip, and Garnet summoned her gauntlets, ready to fight off this foe that had just captured Pearl.

However, it wasn't alone. Several more Eliminators flew in, creating a closed circle around them. Garnet tried to punch one of the Eliminators, but several of them quickly jumped on top of her.

Amethyst then lashed her whip out at the Eliminators on top of Garnet, but that immediately backfired on her, because one of the Eliminators on top of Garnet grabbed her whip, and then yanked it, causing Amethyst to go flying toward it.

Time slowed. And then, the Eliminator shot out a beam, a beam that would destabilize any Gem's form. And of course, once the beam hit Amethyst, yellow lines began to appear on her body, before a noise that sounded like a BANG was heard, and Amethyst poofed, leaving behind only her Gem.

Time resumed. Garnet finally managed to use her gauntlets to push the Eliminators off of her, and when she did, she was just in time to see Amethyst's Gem getting sucked into an Eliminator's vortex.

As fast as she could, Garnet tried to punch the Eliminator. But when she did… She got struck by several lasers at once. She quickly fell to the ground, and that was the last thing she saw.

"And that's all of it…" Garnet finished.

"There's just one thing I'm confused about." Wanda stated. "Why did Steven, at that particular point in time, decide to go into the barn?"

"It was because, well, when we went to the Moon Base to get more information on The Cluster's coordinates…" Steven started to explain. "I saw Peridot take something from the Moon Base, so when we went back to the barn, I confronted her about it, and… She took a Diamond Communicator." Steven flinched at the last part.

"She took a direct line to the Diamonds? From the moon base?" Pearl quickly questioned. "What was she thinking?"

"Man, after everything we've gone through, she's still out to get us!" Amethyst yelled. "Ohh, I'm taking back all my cool nicknames for her! So long, Peri and P-Dot, hello… Ah, I'm too mad! I'll think of something later."

"Oh, how about Perinot Trustworthy?" Cosmo suggested.

"Good one." Amethyst commented. "Well Steven, what happened after that?"

"Well, I managed to get it from Peridot and lock her in the barn, but when I went out to tell you guys about it…" Steven continued. "I saw those Eliminators, disguised as you guys."

Steven had a harder time saying what would come next. "And then, Peridot managed to escape the barn in her giant robot that she built. And right after that, I found that the three I weren't talking to were actually Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl, but three Eliminators disguised as them. They basically tossed Peridot's mech aside and stole the Diamond Communicator from me, destroyed the drill and my cell phone, and then captured me…"

"Wait, why would they want to capture Steven and the Gems?" Wanda asked. "Isn't Timmy the Chosen One that has to stop the Darkness? Why are Steven and the Gems involved with the Eliminators?"

"You don't know about what happened thousands of years ago." Garnet simply said.

"But isn't that when all of the Fairy Warriors blasted back The Darkness with light?" Jorgen asked. "At least, that's what I was told."

"That's what you were told." Pearl emphasized.

"Well, did something different happen?" Steven asked.

Pearl paused. "…We'll save that story… for later. For now, we just need to figure out how to get out of here."

"Well, none of us can summon our weapons," Amethyst started to yell. "And they can't use their magic," She gestured to the fairies. "So it's like we're all just sitting ducks here waiting for The Darkness to get us and the Cluster to explode!"

"Well, what about Timmy?" Cosmo asked. "He's out with his sidekick, Mark Chang, fighting The Darkness right now!"

"But he doesn't know anything about the Cluster, Cosmo!" Wanda corrected. "And, now that I think about it, what would happen to Fairy World if the Earth gets blown up?"

"…I don't think you want the answer to that question." Jorgen answered vaguely.

"So… I guess we might be stuck here for a while?" Steven asked.

"Guess so." Amethyst shrugged.

"So, if that's the case… then I want to learn more about fairies!" Steven said, starry-eyed.

"Oooh, I'd be glad to tell you!" Wanda said. "Alright Steven, now listen carefully. You see, whenever a child is really miserable, that child will get assigned a Fairy-Godparent that can grant almost any wish!"

"There's also a huge book of rules you need to follow," Cosmo added. "Such as no using magic to win a competition, no wishing for Christmas to be every day, no using magic to interfere with true love, and a bunch of other stuff like that."

"Wooooow… Tell me more!" Steven said.

While things eventually cooled down in the Abracatraz cell, there was a looming… prisoner feeling. One that would eventually get bigger, as if…

They would soon get more residents.

"Log Date, 7 14 2, continued." Peridot said, She sat in an alleyway, a large jacket tied over most of her face, except for her eyes, nose, and mouth. "So far, my journey to find another way off Earth, has… failed. Though, I have managed to discover a few things about myself… one of which I would've been better off without."

Peridot's free hand went to go over the area where her Gem was.

"For starters, right after I had gone away from that useless barn…"

" I have no idea where to go." Peridot said flatly, after running several yards away from the barn. "Hmm… Oh, I know! I'll just use that 'Lion' Steven had in order to transport me back to Homeworld! It's so obvious!"

Peridot scanned the area, but she saw no sign of the furred, pink beast. "Hmph. I guess I'll have to look for him, and use the same things Steven tempted him with." Peridot cleared her throat. "HEY LION! WANNA TAKE A NAP?"

Several seconds passed. No response. "Oh well. I'll find another way." She started walking forward, but a few seconds later, she was trampled over by the animal she had just called for. Lion then stood in front of her, waiting for Peridot to get up.

Peridot soon stood up. "Oh. There you are. Unfortunately, I have already determined that you would not be a valuable asset for Homeworld, as you were late when I gave the command to call for you."

Peridot tried to walk past Lion one way, but the large animal blocked her way. She tried to move a different way, but Lion blocked her again. She tried several more times, but Lion kept blocking her.

Peridot growled. "Well, I see that you are… persistent. That doesn't mean you're coming with me, though."

Lion stared at her, more specifically above her eyes, where her Gem was.

" Yes, I know you're staring at my Gem. What's so special about it?" Peridot questioned. Lion moved to stare her in the eyes. Awkward silence.

"I ended up taking Lion with me."

Peridot found a rope and used it as a leash on Lion. "It's funny, I used to be the one getting held by the leash, and now, I'M the one holding the leash! That's… irony!"

Lion sat still only for a few more seconds, before suddenly dashing forward, dragging Peridot behind her. Peridot screamed in frustration. "How is it, that even though I'm the one holding the leash, you're the one dragging me around?!"

Peridot managed to get to her feet while Lion was still dragging her. "I… command… you… to stop!" Lion then skidded to a halt, accidentally making Peridot slam right into his behind. Peridot stood up and dusted herself off.

" Alright, maybe the leash doesn't work." Peridot noted. "And, I can see that now you are in my company, you are following my commands." Peridot stood in thought for a moment. "I got it! You can be useful! All you have to do is lead me to where I can get off this planet!"

Lion stood for a few seconds before flopping to the ground. He yawned, and slowly closed his eyes. Peridot gasped. "Nononono wait! You can't fall asleep now! You were a really useful asset to me! I know, I'll take that leash off!" Peridot rushed to remove the leash off of Lion, and then threw it aside. "How's that?"

Lion kept sleeping. "Oh, what do you want?" Peridot yelled. "Alright, think. What else did Steven bribe this furry creature with?" She paced in a circle around Lion, trying to think. "I got it!" She said after around a minute. "Hey Lion! If you get up, I'll find a… Lion Licker for you!"

At that, Lion immediately stood up, and gave Peridot a look that said, "Get on." Peridot hopped on Lion.

" Alright, Lion. Let's find those Lion Lickers!" Peridot said. Lion started running forward into a forest, and then roared, unleashing a big, pink portal.

They went through the portal, and several seconds later, Lion roared another portal, landing them in the middle of a large city. Even though it was in the middle of the night, there were still many cars and people about.

" Lion, where did you take us?" Peridot asked. She looked up, and saw a bright, glowing neon sign that read, "EMPIRE CITY"

" Empire City, huh?" Peridot asked. "Well, I'm sure that there are dozens of Lion Lickers to be found here! Just look how many buildings there are!" She hopped off of Lion. "Alright Lion, I'm sure that the first building we go into will surely have your Lion Lickers!"

She and Lion walked into the nearest building. It was very large, and looked very fancy. The two of them walked up to what Peridot assumed was a counter, where the person behind it raised an eyebrow at the very odd pair.

Peridot walked up to the desk, Lion right behind her. "Hello, I would like one Lion Licker, please!"

The person behind the desk was now very confused. "Um… this is a hotel. And no pets are allowed, either."

" So what?" Peridot screamed. "I promised this pink animal that I would give him a Lion Licker! And, as you can see, I have no Lion Lickers! So, I demand you give me some!"

The person behind the desk sighed. "Mam, I'm gonna have to ask you and your Lion to leave."

" Leave?" Peridot scoffed. "I'm not leaving until I get my Lion Lickers! No matter what it takes!" Proving her point, she hopped onto the desk.

"In hindsight, this was probably a bad idea."

Mere seconds after she hopped on the desk, the person behind the desk grabbed a bat next to him and swung it at her head, causing Peridot to go flying off the desk. The person behind the desk then called the police.

" Hello, police?" A response. "Yes, a crazy green lady and her pink Lion were coming here and the green lady was attempting to assault me and- oh no they're getting away!"

Lion had lightly grabbed Peridot's hand in his mouth and ran out of the hotel, because Peridot had been stunned for a moment after being hit by the bat. Lion ran outside, and then ran in a random direction.

Several seconds later, Peridot regained her senses. "What the… Ah! Lion, let go!" Lion immediately let go of her hand, letting the green Gem fall to the ground. "Ugh… That was a total failure." She stood up. "Alright, let's try another building."

Peridot started to walk toward another building, but Lion simply walked forward. Peridot noticed this, and walked in front of Lion. "Hey, where are you going? The building's that way!" Lion simply walked past her.

" Oh, I see how it is!" Peridot said, walking after him. "You must recognize where the Lion Lickers are, so you're going straight to where they are! Well, I'll just follow you then!"

Peridot followed Lion for several minutes, before he appeared to be tired and lied down again. "What? You're tired again? I promised you I would get that Lion Licker!" Peridot said. Lion refused to get up.

"Well, this is just great." Peridot said, sarcasm laced in her voice. She saw a nearby bench and decided to sit down on it.

" So, you homeless too?" Was what a female voice next to her said. Peridot flinched and looked next to her. A woman in old clothing was the owner of the voice.

" Homeless?" Peridot questioned, confused. "No no no, I think you have it wrong. "You see, my home is Homeworld, I just… am unable to get back there right now."

" Well, if you're unable to get there, then wouldn't that be considered homeless?" The woman asked.

" I… guess."

The woman looked at Lion and giggled. "Does that lion belong to you?"

" Well… sort of." Peridot answered. "You see, he actually belonged to Steven, but he recently… disappeared, so I'm temporarily taking custody over him."

" Well, that's awfully nice of you." The woman commented.

" Yes… it was… nice." Peridot said. She sighed. "I've been also trying to feed Lion, but… I can't find any Lion Lickers! And I even promised Lion that I would give him some!"

" Lion Lickers?" The woman asked.

" Yes, Lion Lickers!" Peridot repeated. "If I can't give him his Lion Lickers, then he won't function! If he won't function, then he won't move! And if he won't move, then he can't help find a way to get off this-" Peridot was interrupted when something was placed in her lap.

" What is this?" Peridot asked, picking up whatever it was. "L…I…" She gasped. "Lion Lickers! Oh my stars! Wow, thanks! Where did you get these?"

" I bought a couple hours ago." The woman explained. "Seeing as how your lion needs one, I figured it wouldn't hurt to give you one. Also, you'll probably need this." The woman took off her jacket and gave it to Peridot.

"At the time, I simply called it a 'stroke of luck.'"

" Wow, thanks! Again!" Peridot said. She triumphantly stood up and ran over to Lion. "Lion, look! It's a Lion Licker, just like you wanted!" She waved the package of Lion Lickers in front of Lion's face. "And, I got a present of my own! A 'shirt'! And it's all thanks to that nice…"

She paused, because when she was about to gesture to where the woman was sitting… the woman was gone. "Woman… Hey, where'd she go?" Peridot scanned the area, but the mysterious homeless woman was nowhere to be found. "Eh, oh well." She shrugged. "So, do you want your Lion Licker, Lion?"

Almost right away Lion stood up, and roughly grabbed Lion Licker from Peridot and ate it, wrapper and all. After Lion ate it, his eyes glowed white.

" Alright! Looks like you're all recharged, Lion!" Peridot cheered, draping the jacket over her back. She then hopped on the large, pink animal. "Now, find a way to get off Earth!"

Lion then ran forward, and soon roared another pink portal. Around a minute later, Lion roared another portal, and the two of them landed in a dark forest.

" Heh, a forest. Maybe you know of a way to get off Earth from here?" Peridot asked. Unexpectedly, though, Lion roughly bucked Peridot off of him, and then ran ahead.

" Wait, Lion!" Peridot yelled, standing up and running after Lion. "What about our friendship?" Lion continued forward, running faster than Peridot. "I gave you a Lion Licker like you wanted!" Peridot yelled, reaching her arm out.

However, Lion simply kept running deeper and deeper into the forest, all the way to the point where he couldn't be seen anymore. However, Peridot kept running. She didn't look where she was going. She fell into a lake that Lion had jumped over.

Peridot quickly swam up and climbed out of the lake, coughing several times. She held onto her now wet jacket. "I guess everyone's abandoned me now." She stared into the lake. "And now, I'm alone. Well… alone, except for this jacket, and my tape recorder. It's all I have left."

Peridot smiled a little, but then she frowned. Something was… off. About herself in particular. But… what exactly was it? One of her hands reached up to her Gem, located where it always was, right above her eyes.


Her… her own Gem… it was… cracked.

" Oh nonono! How did this happen to me?" Peridot cried out. Then, she remembered.

When she flew in the air after her mech exploded… and then landed roughly on the ground.

That's when it happened.

And that wasn't the only time, too…

When she had accidentally rammed into Lion… when that guy hit her with the bat… All of those incidents exasperated her crack.

" What am I going to do?" Peridot yelled. "With a cracked gem, Yellow Diamond will just toss me aside like all of the other defunct, useless off-colors and cracked gems!" She paused.

" No, come on Peridot, you can do this." She reminded herself. "I'll just hide my crack, so that way, Yellow Diamond won't know about it!" She chuckled to herself. "Even in the worst situations, I'm still so smart."

Peridot used the jacket the woman had previously given her to cover up her cracked Gem. Then, after taking a deep breath, she started marching through the forest. Several minutes passed. Soon enough, she made it out of the forest, and made it to a park.

A thought sprung into her mind. "I need to record all of this." It didn't take long for her to find an alleyway, and when she did, she got out her tape recorder.

"And in conclusion, I have determined that I will, no matter what, find a way off this gem-forsaken planet!" Peridot finished. "Even if I have to abandon people, just like Lion abandoned me!"

Almost as if on cue, Lion came strolling in, carrying something in his mouth. "Lion! You didn't abandon me after all! …What's that in your mouth?"

Lion spat it out, and then Peridot picked it up. It was a large, wet, bundle of paper. "What is this?" Peridot asked. There were three large words on the front page of it.

She read it. "Local… Paper… Dimmsdale…"

Chapter Text

" You want REAL danger? How about my duel with the foul Rainbowzilla? A foe who's so powerful he's two of my greatest foes fused into one!"

As the heroes descended into the Floro Caverns, Flint Cragley entertained them all.

" Boss. BOSS! Cragnons heard that story 255 times, brah… You making my crag hurt."

" Brah, if you count time we weren't tied up, then it 256 times."

Mario and co glanced over at the weary faces of Flint's crew as they delved deeper.

But a light grew… Was it a ray of hope from the Pure Heart, or an evil illusion?

"Cragley ho!" Flint yelled as he and everyone else got even further into the cave. " "We plodded on, traipsing over all manner of beasts that gnashed fangs at us! But then…NO! A sight too horrible to believe appeared before our eyes!"

Hornfels looked around. "Boss… Nothing happen yet, brah…"

"In fact, we're literally just standing here." Mario blatantly added.

"I know that!" Flint yelled in response. "The "sight too horrible to believe is still up ahead! We're going to look for it now! Come on, move!" At that, Flint ran ahead.

"Whuh? Wait up, brah!" Hornfels yelled.

"Boss, no! Monzo not want to get left behind, brah!" Monzo added. He and Hornfels ran after Flint.

"…Just how much longer do we have to let this guy boss all of us around?" Bowser questioned.

Peach shook her head. "I don't know… Hopefully not much longer."

With that, the group quickly moved onward. Before long, they came across a large, white door. On the other side, they saw a brainwashed Cragnon walk through a scanner. The scanner dinged and showed a green light, and then opened a door in front of the Cragnon.

Right now, the group couldn't get through, because when Violet tried to go through the scanner, it rejected her. So, they had to go a different way. And soon enough, Mario happened to ask the million-dollar question.

"So… what's going to happen when this is all over?"

All of them were in thought as they moved forward.

"At this point… it's impossible to say." Peach said.

At this point, it was the only answer that could be given.

They almost had six Pure Hearts, and yet, through all their questions, they had almost no answers.

Who was Mr. L? Where's Luigi? What's Bill up to? What about the Darkness, was it truly gone?

Though the entire group had their own questions, Mario in particular just had one.

What happened before, and during his birthday party?

It was truly a question he and anyone else currently with him could not answer. And to think, the day before the party, he was… Was… It hadn't really occurred to him before. The day before the party. It was… a blur. But the day previous? What happened then? …No memory.

Mario's head started hurting, but what put him out of his thoughts was when he saw a door below, and from it came a brainwashed Cragnon. They went in the room the Cragnon came out of.

In the room, which according to a sign was the Processing Center, there was another door next to it that needed a card to unlock. And as expected, they didn't have the card to unlock it. So they went back, but up ahead was a door that was locked.

Thankfully, there was a path below them that might lead somewhere, so they went that way. In that path, there was a large red button that they had to use Thoreau to throw a couple of the brainwashed Cragnons on so that it would open a nearby pipe.

They went in the pipe, and were met with a pipe and a door. They went through the door, and were met with yet another pipe and door, along with a couple of Reverse Cursyas. This time, the group went through the pipe, and were met with two doors. They went through the door on the right, and went into a room with a pipe.

In the room, there was writing on the wall, which read, "Behind the Skull" when translated. The group then went through the pipe, making it to a room with a single door.

Soon enough, the group made their way through this maze of doors and pipes and found a room with a skull drawn on the wall. They used Fleep on it, and then a key dropped to the ground. The group made their way out of the maze and to a door that had been locked. They used the key, and opened the door.

Once in the room, they had to jump on a tall platform with no way to go back afterward. On the other side, they saw a frightened Cragnon and yet another Pixl.

"EEK! F-F-Found us!" The Cragnon, named Gabbro said. "Gabbro thought this was good hiding spot, since key was lost, brah!"

"Yes, this is unexpected…" The Pixl next to Gabbro, named Dottie said. The Pixl looked like a small circle, but with many blue and green lines facing outward. "But so is a storm of rain… Such is the way of things. There are no absolutes."

Gabbro turned to Dottie. "Wh-What we do, brah?" Gabbro nervously asked.

"Come, come, be at peace." Dottie said. "Calm your inner raging sea. Let us meditate on this…"

Gabbro then calmed down. "You probably right, brah…" He paused. "Got it!" He turned to the group. "E-Evil brahs! You take Gabbro. Gabbro give up… But her… Do not hurt Pixl!"

"But you…" Dottie started.

"No. Let Gabbro speak, brah…" Gabbro interrupted, turning to the Pixl. "You kept Gabbro company… You helped Gabbro hide… Gabbro owe you big, brah… Big debt for Pixl! Gabbro's time ending, but Gabbro really want you to live free…"

"Come, now, ease your mind." Dottie said. "Let me muffle the wails of your frightened soul… Do not be hasty in fear! Look closer… They are not Floro Sapiens!"

"What?" Gabbro turned back to the group. "Who are you brahs? Could you… You come to save Gabbro?"

"Well, I guess… This is interesting…" Tippi commented. "Just like Flint Cragley, you've avoided falling under the control of the Floro Sapiens…"

"What? Flint here, too?" Gabbro quickly asked.

"Yeah, he's searching another part of the mine." Violet explained.

Gabbro turned to Dottie. "Gabbro HUGE Cragley fan! Cragley do something, brah! Cragley save us all!"

"Well, isn't that welcome news!" Dottie responded. "Why don't you go find Flint? For I must bid you farewell."

"What? Why? You not come with Gabbro?" Gabbro questioned.

"Humans and Pixls…or Cragnons and Pixls, for that matter… shouldn't linger long together." Dottie explained. "Only heroes who know how to utilize the Pixls properly can travel with them… Please, heed my words now… It's best for you this way."

"Oh, crag…" Gabbro sighed.

"Come now, let me assist you in your departure from here." Dottie said. "Let your aura shrink… When it diminishes, you can return to the village where the one you seek awaits." Dottie then used her power to shrink Gabbro.

"Thank you, great Pixl brah… Gabbro not forget you!" Gabbro yelled. He rushed to a door small enough for him to go through, and left, but not before crying out one final time.

"Farewell, weeping Cragnon!" Dottie said. "Go frolic beneath the sun, where you are meant to live. Rain still falls in my heart. The taken souls cry out… Why do they cry such tears?" Dottie moved toward Mario's group. "You must stop this torrent. Fate brought us together. Great hero of 1,500 years… Now you must take me there… To the deep, dark underbelly of the earth…"

And with that, Dottie, the last Pixl, joined their group. "Let us go!" Dottie cried. "Before the rain of tears becomes a flood… Before disaster breaks…"

And with that, the group left the room. They made their way back to a previous room that needed a card key. There was a small space they needed to use Dottie to get to, and in that small space was the card key they needed. They inserted the card key in the scanner, and went through the door. In front of them was a short hallway, and then a pipe.

They went through the pipe, and found a small enclosure with a ladder leading downward. When they went down the ladder… They saw a large room, with huge cages on each side, containing brainwashed Cragnons. There was a large, blue button that the group had no other choice than but to press.

Bowser pressed the button, and soon a blaring alarm went off, and the cages opened, allowing the brainwashed Cragnons to move freely throughout the room. The group soon found a pipe ahead, and when they went through…

They heard an all-too familiar voice.

"Ah ha ha. So! At long last, you've come to play, like late-sleeping toddlers!" Dimentio said with a laugh. Dimentio and O'Chunks were both in the room.

"What are you two doing here… again?" Junior questioned. O'Chunks didn't say anything.

"Ah… Do you not tire constantly asking me useless questions, or collecting those worn-out, tiresome Pure Hearts?" Dimentio asked. "I am not violent by nature, you know. In fact, I'd prefer to settle this peacefully."

"Peacefully? Just what in the heck do you mean by that?" Peach questioned.

"Say, for instance, you wished to go back to your world. I could do that for you…" Dimentio explained.

"No, I'd rather have somewhere to rule than wait and watch everything die." Bowser deadpanned.

Dimentio laughed. "So, it must be… Shall we begin?" He raised his arms, and yet again, they were in Dimension D.

"Dimentio, you're never going to win." Mario said, heavily annoyed. "No matter how many times you try and change things or put us in a different place or whatever else, the outcome will always stay the same! So, you may as well just give up!"

"My my, aren't you plucky?" Dimentio asked. "Same fight, same outcome… You are precisely correct. And that is why…" Dimentio then snapped his fingers. O'Chunks' head began glowing, and then…

Several Floro Sprouts appeared on his head. "Bro-ccoli!" O'Chunks yelled, clearly not himself.

"Lovely green hat, wouldn't you say?" Dimentio asked.

Mario was about to retort, but the way Dimentio said that caught him off guard… just what did the jester mean? Did… Did Dimentio know something abou-

"What is that?" Violet questioned, inadvertedly sweeping Mario out of his thoughts.

"Dear O'Chunks! So strong, yet so very dim! A child could learn his attack patterns." Dimentio began. "As such, I requested some sprouts from my acquaintance to liven him up a touch. I call the boy "O'Cabbage"! Don't be shy, O'Cabbage! Introduce yourself!"

O'Chunks, or rather, O'Cabbage, began beating his chest. "Cab-bage!"

"Simply adorable." Dimentio smiled. "Now remember, kids: eat your vegetables to grow big! Except in this case, a veggie will eat you! Have fun, now! Ciao!" And with that, yet again, Dimentio vanished.

"As-para-gus!" O'Cabbage yelled. And with that, the heroes knew that this was a fight they couldn't avoid.

O'Cabbage began by spinning several times, arms outstretched. While spinning, he quickly moved toward the group. Bowser quickly reacted by spewing fire at O'Cabbage. He made a direct hit. But even though he did, O'Cabbage didn't stop.

O'Cabbage continued spinning toward them, but now he moved toward Mario. The plumber quickly jumped up and out of the way. Mario landed in front of O'Cabbage. He turned around, and summoned his firebrand in his left hand. Though it wasn't his good hand, at least that arm wasn't injured. Once Mario built it up enough, he threw it at O'Cabbage. Though the result was not at all what he expected.

When Mario threw the fireball at O'Cabbage, the brainwashed minion had been spinning so fast that the fireball somehow managed to bounce off of him and ricochet back toward Mario. Fortunately, Mario managed to duck below his incoming fireball, and it flew over him and hit the wall.

O'Cabbage soon hit the wall and stopped spinning, and that's when Peach charged forward at him with her parasol. While O'Cabbage was dazed from hitting the wall, Peach got close enough to hit him with her parasol, flip forward, jump on O'Cabbage, and then use her parasol to float safely to the ground.

O'Cabbage started to regain his senses. And then, he charged at Peach, due to her being the last person who hit him. Violet summoned an ice boomerang, and then swung it at O'Cabbage. It hit him in the face, and then flew back to Violet, where she caught it.

O'Cabbage stopped for a moment because of getting hit in the head. That gave Mario just enough time to run up and jump on O'Cabbage's head, followed by Junior tucking into his shell, and then launching himself at O'Cabbage, causing O'Cabbage to fall to his back.

Only a couple seconds later, O'Cabbage got up, and leaped high in the air. Junior got out from his shell and saw a shadow cast over him. About a second later, Junior managed to get out of the way right before O'Cabbage landed on him.

And then, right after O'Cabbage landed on the ground, Bowser ran up and jumped on O'Cabbage. And that was it. The fight was over. Bowser landed away from O'Cabbage, and the latter fell to one knee, groaning.

Dimension D then faded away. And then, all five sprouts on O'Cabbage's head fell off. O'Chunks looked surprised.

" 'Ey! What in gravy am I doin' in 'ere?" O'Chunks questioned. He stood up and put a hand to his chin. "Hunh? An' what are YOU doin' in 'ere as well?" He referred to the group that by now was tired from the battle. "Oh, I get the picture! You lot want teh challenge the new, improved O'Chunks! Yeh got pepper in yer pants, I'll give yeh that! But this time, yeh WILL get ruined!"

Mario was about to protest, but before he could, he and everyone else heard O'Chunks's stomach growl. "Whuh-oh… Me belly's growlin' like a starvin' dog!" O'Chunks commented. "Warrior rule, number one: "Never fight on an empty stomach! 'Tis madness!" Sorry, but we've got teh call it a day! Can't go buckin' the warrior rules Next time, though, yer done! Chunks away!"

O'Chunks waved goodbye, and then flew away the same way he always does. Tippi then floated toward the lone sprouts on the ground.

"Look… The sprouts from his head… They're the same as on the florified Cragnons." Tippi explained. "They look as though they're nearly dead, however…" Each person in the group then cautiously walked over to a sprout and picked it up.

"Well, what do you think?" Tippi asked. "Would you care to try it on? I believe you'll be safe…"

"…Maybe we should wait." Peach said. The rest of the group unanimously agreed.

"Yeah, maybe we should wait until we actually need to put it on." Violet suggested.

And with that, the group left through the exit pipe. While tired from their battle, they still had to collect the Pure Heart, lying somewhere in the caverns…

A voice in the room they just left laughed. And then, Dimentio appeared yet again.

"Mm… If they could beat that model of O'Chunks…then they are coming along quite nicely. Perhaps they really are the ones I have waited for all this time."

Dimentio laughed again.

"I should prepare myself as well! So much to do, so precious little time… I need to get ready for the show I planned for all of them… Ah, it will be treat indeed."

And with that, he vanished.

After Mark had said those words, Timmy froze on the spot, but thankfully, he soon thought of something.

"Uh… run!" Timmy yelled, not a second later, he started running down the street, Mark following after him a second later. The Eliminators started to quickly fly after them. Timmy ran for several seconds before Mark caught up with him, out of breath.

"Run? That's your great plan?" Mark questioned.

"I don't have the creativity of a really creative animal yet!" Timmy argued. "What, do you want to stop running?"

Their arguing soon proved to be futile, though, as several more Eliminators joined in chasing them while trying to shoot lasers at them, but just barely missing.

"No, keep running!" Mark yelled, followed by him screaming.

The two of them kept running down the street for nearly a minute. Thankfully, no one else had noticed what was going on, most likely because it was still the middle of the night. Though, the sun showed hints of rising soon, as more light came from the east.

While Timmy and Mark were running from the Eliminators, they nearly got blasted several times. Also, they were slowly starting to run out of energy as their pace slightly slowed.

"Can't you think of anything else?" Mark yelled, trying not to slow down.

"I don't know, why don't you think of something?" Timmy questioned. The Eliminators shot at them again, this time only centimeters from hitting them. Timmy and Mark both screamed.

Up ahead, there was a large, circular sewer grate. It got thrown aside, and from it, popped out Chester and AJ. Both of them were covered in sewage. It was almost as if this was a miracle.

"Timmy!" Chester yelled. "Robotic aliens have taken over Dimmsdale!"

"Jump in if you wanna live!" AJ quickly added.

"Awesome! It's Chester and AJ!" Timmy yelled, relieved that he actually found other people that he knew, not even considering any other possibilities.

"Trust them, for they live in a sewer." Mark added. The two of them were still a couple yards away from Chester and AJ.

Now only a couple feet away. When they were close enough, Mark jumped in, followed by Timmy. Chester quickly closed the grate, letting the Eliminators above them pass by. The four of them now stood in the sewer water.

"Sewer dwellers!" Mark called out. "Thank you for getting us out of that mess, and into this one."

"Yeah, thanks so much, guys!" Timmy added. "How'd you know we would be running this way?"

Chester and AJ looked at each other. "Uh…" They both said, unable to provide an explanation.

"Uh, guys?" Timmy questioned, raising an eyebrow. Chester and AJ were both silent for a moment, making things pretty awkward.

"Well, now we must…" Chester suddenly said, breaking the silence. Both his and AJ's eyes turned green.

"Eliminate Timmy Turner." Both of them finished. Vortexes came out from their mouths, threatening to capture Timmy and Mark.

Mark quickly turned to Timmy. "Luckily for you, I have the extremities of a squid, and the knowledge of a sanitation employee!" Mark quickly explained. Mark then grabbed Timmy and pulled him under the sewer water.

The Chester and AJ Eliminators scanned the area for where Timmy and Mark where. And then, several seconds later, Mark nearly flew out of the water, Timmy on his back. Mark landed in the water, and before the Eliminators could react, Mark used his tentacles to rev up to swim, pushing tons of water into the Eliminators' faces.

Timmy cheered as Mark soon quickly swam forward through the sewers, twisting and turning just in case the Eliminators followed them. And soon enough, Mark saw a sewer grate, and leaped up and out of it, getting both of them out of the sewers.

Timmy and Mark landed next to each other on a patch of grass in front of Timmy's house… Only to see three Eliminators several feet in front of them, scanning the area, facing away from them. When the Eliminators heard them, they turned around.

Not wasting another second, Timmy and Mark immediately ran into the house using one of the holes an Eliminator previously made. They ran up the stairs, and toward Timmy's room, unable to think of anywhere else to go. Timmy practically flung the door open to his room, and once he and Mark were in, they closed it.

"Wait, I have another plan!" Mark said, an idea forming in his head. He spun his Fake-I-Fier, and turned into a small mouse. Then, he quickly scampered on all fours to a mouse hole in the back of the room.

"What about me?" Timmy questioned, wondering if Mark had really thought this through.

Mark peeked his head out of the mouse hole. "Uh, I don't think you'll fit in the hole."

Before Timmy could have any kind of rebuttal, two Eliminator hands tore through his roof. Timmy screamed. The hands then tore his roof off, tossing it aside like a piece of scrap paper. Up above his house, several Eliminators floated, all looking down at Timmy.

A moment later, the Lead Eliminator arrived, and quickly flew down to stand in front of Timmy, blocking his way to the door. The Eliminators above them flew even higher, and then spun in a large circle. They spun faster, faster, and even faster until they formed a large black and red vortex.

The vortex sucked in everything it could, though Timmy managed to stay on the ground. Many of the presents Timmy previously wished for were now getting whisked away.

"Into the Darkness, Timmy Turner." The Lead Eliminator spoke, gesturing to the giant vortex. "You have no magic. You have no weapons. And you have no options."

Timmy saw a present near him that was getting sucked into the vortex, and grabbed it. "Oh yeah? Think again, Eliminator." Timmy challenged, ready to open the present. "Please be a turbo blaster, please be a turbo blaster!" Timmy quickly said before closing his eyes and opening the present.

And inside was a boom box that was playing a rock song. "A boom box?" Timmy asked, dropping the packaging and holding the boom box. "Well let's hope it really goes boom!" As hard as he could, he threw the boom box into the vortex.

What happened was what nobody expected. As the boom box flew into the vortex, the vortex sparkled for a couple seconds. The Eliminators powering were forced to slow down for a couple seconds. At the same time, the Lead Eliminator seemed to glitch, sputtering out gibberish for a few seconds.

"Dude, I don't think it digs the funk." Mark commented. Timmy smiled, knowing that what he just did weakened the Eliminators.

Timmy grabbed another present and tore it open. In it was a pair of roller skates. "Well, let's see if it can rock and roller skate!" Timmy yelled, throwing the skates into the vortex.

The Lead Eliminator looked into the vortex as the skates flew in, but flinched as two, large red lighting bolts suddenly appeared out of the vortex. The Lead Eliminator started glitching even more.

"Stop… Timmy Turn…" The Lead Eliminator stopped and spastically moved as electricity shot all over his body. "Eliminate… Chosen… Elimin…"

Now the tides were started to turn. Mark got out of the hole and spun his Fake-I-Fier, turning himself back to normal. Then, Timmy ran over the giant carton of weenies he also previously wished for.

"Now let's see how they like my weenies." Timmy said, grabbing the carton and setting it on the floor. "Not the catchphrase I was going for, but whip the weenies!" Timmy grabbed a few weenies from the giant pile. Mark grabbed several with each of his tentacles.

And then, before the Lead Eliminator could react, Mark and Timmy quickly started throwing the weenies into the vortex. The Lead Eliminator was thrown into the vortex by the sheer force of the weenies.

The carton of weenies slowly started to empty. The vortex started to fill with weenies. Eventually, the weenies were emptied out of the carton.

The Lead Eliminator's head stuck out from all of the weenies forced into the vortex. "Elimin-stop… Elimina…" Red lightning bolts flew from the Lead Eliminator's eyes. "Stop… Crystal… Chosen…" White lights appeared from the vortex. "Gems… Eliminate… Ste-"

The vortex exploded. It could be heard through the whole neighborhood. The explosion caused weenies and Eliminator part to fly up, and then start to fall down, some of them landing in Timmy's room. Timmy and Mark cheered, finally having beaten the Eliminators.

"You see that, Darkness?" Timmy questioned, as if the Darkness could actually hear him. "Now I'm going to get the wand on the dark side of the blue moon and I'm coming after you!" After his declaration, Timmy stretched his arm and pointed his finger up into the sky.

"And where is this blue moon?" Mark asked.

Timmy paused, and lowered his arm. "I have no idea."

Somewhere, out in the deepest reaches of space… the wand they needed was there. And yet, as they accomplished one of their goals, they currently had no way to start their more pressing one.

Timmy and Mark soon walked outside, seeing the Eliminator parts falling down on various parts of the lawn.

"Eliminators down, the Darkness to go." Timmy said, carefully maneuvering past the broken Eliminator parts. He stopped, and so did Mark. "And although I have no idea how we crushed those dudes with weenies, it's off to your spaceship to get the second wand!"

"Sewer squid powers, activate!" Mark cheered. Timmy hopped on Mark's back with a laugh. And then, Mark jumped into the open sewer grate, going into the sewers.

The front lawn of the house was quiet… for about a minute. An Eliminator hand began to twitch at the fingers. Then, the whole hand started to twitch before picking itself. The hand managed to drag itself across the grass, and although it took a while, it made it to an Eliminator leg. The hand tapped the leg, causing it to stir. The leg stood upright. The hand made its way to other Eliminator body parts.

And soon enough, the Lead Eliminator had rebuilt itself entirely, jacket, glasses, and all. A large thumping was coming from the Lead Eliminator's chest. The chest opened, showing a boom box.

"Get Timmy." The Lead Eliminator sung to the beat of the boom box. "Get Timmy Turner. Get Timmy Turner." Roller skates appeared at the Lead Eliminator's feet.

The Lead Eliminator then staked down the street, singing the same three lyrics over and over again. Behind him, two other Eliminators that had recently rebuilt themselves were doing the same thing.

Chapter Text

After defeating O'Chunks and getting the dead sprouts, Mario and co headed back to the area of the cavern where the large scanner was. In order to get past the scanner, they each placed their dead Floro Sprout on their heads.

Since the scanner recognized them having Floro Sprouts, it dinged with a green light and let them through. They then went through the large, green door that was ahead of them.

The next room was huge. It contained several Floro Sapiens that were guarding the area. The group quickly disposed of them. Now that they weren't distracted, the group looked around at what kind of room they were actually in.

Varying jewels of high prices were carefully laid out, each having their own small pillar to lie on. And, lined across the walls were painting of the previous versions "King Croacus", the most recent one of them being King Croacus the Fourth, the one currently living.

According to writing below the painting, King Croacus the Fourth was the one who invented the method for mind-controlling Cragnons. And then, he had an initiative to "enslave Cragnons en masse."

"I can't even believe this!" Peach said. "He's been planning this since the 1600s!"

"He certainly does have a lot of dedication for what he does." Bowser commented. "Heck, even more than I do! He was planning this for almost 400 years!"

"Also, what year is it exactly?" Violet asked. "I don't know why, but I always seem to forget."

"It's 2012." Mario reminded her. "Anyway, with all these jewels and vases and whatnot around here, I'm fairly certain that the Pure Heart could be here too."

"Well, I haven't seen it in any of these vases." Junior said, looking inside one. He tried to put it back on the pillar, but it ended up tipping over, falling to the ground, and shattering. "…Whoops."

"The Pure Heart isn't in here…" Tippi explained. "Though, I think it may be close…"

"Alright, then let's take a look around, and see if we can find a way to get any further." Mario said. And so, the group fanned out throughout the room, seeing if there was anything that could lead them further.

And soon enough, they noticed that below each painting, there was a crack in the floor. They used Boomer to blow up each crack, and found that below each painting was a small, secret passage. Each passage had a different colored block that could switch between black, white, blue, and red, which corresponded to each color of a painting.

Shortly, they solved the puzzle, which was to match each color of a block with the color of a painting above. Once they solved it, a door appeared at the end wall of the room. And then, hopefully ready for whatever may lay on the other side, Mario and co went through.

And on the other side, they heard a strange, disturbing voice.

"Where, oh, where are my pretties?" The owner of the voice was King Croacus. The same one that was depicted on the last painting; the same one that had begun the mind-control and slavery of Cragnons.

"Pretties… Beautiful things…" Croacus continued. "Ooo-wee! Bring them to me… More! More! More!" As with the previous room, at least a dozen highly valuable objects were resting on pillars.

Mario and co carefully walked closer to Croacus, ready for a fight at any moment. But even though they were ready, at this point, they were still tired from just recently fighting O'Chunks, and before that, traversing through the caverns, and before that… when was the last time all of them got a satisfactory rest? All the way back when they got the fourth Pure Heart? Nevertheless, all of them were starting to reach their limits. This would truly be a test of endurance until they could get some rest…

"…Ooo? What are these hideous, clashing things?" Croacus questioned.

"Um… you look like that painting we saw… Are you really King Croacus?" Tippi asked.

"Oo-wee-oo! So you must be the intruders I've heard SO much about!" Croacus said. "Well, I will NOT forgive the great trashening of my beautiful kingdom! Noo-wee-oo! …Thus you are warned!"

"Now just hold on one second!" Mario yelled. "It's you who should be warned… if you don't release all of the Cragnons you've enslaved!"

"Never! Their sturdy bodies make them such fine workers. Exquisite!" Croacus yelled. "I need them to dig up more gems so I can build a bejeweled palace. Oo-wee!"

"How could you!" Peach nearly screamed. "You should be ashamed of yourself, forcing innocent Cragnons to do your dirty work! You'll release them this instant!"

"Trash is garbage, no matter how you dress it." Croacus argued. "This world is made for BEAUTY! And if you need some proof… then have a look at this!" And then, something appeared above Croacus. The Blue Pure Heart.

"Hey!" Bowser yelled. "Give that to us! We need that, you know!"

"I can hear it in your voice… You want it so badly, you can barely think, mm?" Croacus questioned. "Seems we all seek beauty… So how dare you take a high horse over me?"

"Excuse me?" Violet questioned. "You're really comparing yourself to us? I don't recall any of us enslaving dozens of townsfolk in order for us to get richer!"

"Your blabber hurts my ears!" Croacus complained. "And your smell is wilting me! I can stand you no longer. I rarely stoop to such thing, but I'll destroy you myself. Consider it an honor!"

Croacus put the Pure Heart away before anyone could grab it, and flew high in the air. Spiky, rosy shaped armor appeared around him, covering his face. Then, a large, prickly vine emerged from Croacus, and extended to the floor, before splitting off into three, smaller vines that at the end of them had large faces in the shape of trapezoids.

"Oo-wee-oo! Here I COME!" Croacus yelled, taunting them.

"Bring it on." Junior growled. He cracked his knuckles together, Mario summoned his firebrand in his left hand, Peach prepared her parasol, Bowser showed off his claws, and Violet summoned a sword of purple ice. Working together, this would be a fight that they would not lose.

The trapezoid vines immediately started lashing out at all of them. Violet ran forward, quickly turned her sword into a shield, and blocked one of the vines. Mario flung fire at one of the vines, while Bowser spewed fire out at that same vine, pushing it back. As the last vine got close to Peach, the princess slapped it with her parasol, knocking it back.

Even though the vines had been pushed back a little, they were relentless and quickly moved forward again. Junior quickly tucked into his shell and moved forward, going underneath the vines.

Croacus's armor opened for a moment. Violet saw this first, and turned her shield back into a sword. She leapt up and tried to hit Croacus with her sword. But as she swung at the plant king, the armor moved back over him. She needed to be quicker next time.

Junior got to the other side of the room, and got out from his shell. Croacus was focusing on the other four, so if he wanted to, he could get a clean shot in. But, the problem was that Croacus had his armor around him. So, he decided to do something risky. While Croacus was low, Junior ran and jumped onto Croacus's head, refusing to let go once he got on.

Mario jumped over a vine that came at him from the side, but after he landed, he failed to notice another one that came from the back. It hit his back, knocking him to the floor. Mario instinctively tried to turn and use his firebrand on his right hand, but gasped in pain when he remembered what happened if he used his right arm too much.

Fortunately, after Peach knocked away the vine that hit Mario with her parasol, Peach extended a hand out to help Mario up. Mario accepted it with his left hand, but hissed in pain and held his right arm where the gauze was.

Bowser tried to grab at the vine that was attacking him, but he simply couldn't get to it. It kept shoving him with its large head and smacking him around with the rest of the vine. But once it looked like Bowser would be able to grab the vine, the vine quickly moved away and moved to a new target.

That new target was Junior, who was still hanging onto Croacus. The vine came at him from behind, so he couldn't see it coming. But at the last second, Junior turned around and saw it, so he moved out of the way, but in doing so, nearly fell off Croacus.

Croacus then jerked to the left, and that was what caused Junior to finally fall off. Fortunately, Bowser was there to catch him, and then gently set him down after making sure he was all right.

Mario used his firebrand, making sure to use it from his left hand this time. He aimed it at Croacus, and threw it. The plant king just so happened to come out from his shield then, and got a face full of fire.

"Yes!" Mario said. But then, Croacus tried a new strategy. Croacus quickly retracted all of his vines back to himself, and then quickly moved out the three vines in jagged patterns, but the vines now had spikes, so that would be a huge problem.

Peach managed to stay above the spiky vines by jumping and using her parasol to slow her fall. Junior's smaller size allowed him to slip past the vines, while Bowser had a much harder times dodging due to his much larger size. Mario had a hard time trying to dodge while making sure his right arm wouldn't get pricked. The last thing he needed right now was another injury to his right arm.

Violet had a different approach. When one of the vine heads were low, she jumped onto it. Another vine head was nearby, and she leapt onto that one. And then, the third one. She had quickly figured out that Croacus retracted in and out of his shield at certain intervals.

Purple sword in hand, she leaped at Croacus. The plant king happened to come out of his shield then and there. Violet hit Croacus with the sword, knocking him back a bit. The spiky vines immediately retracted as Violet landed behind Croacus.

Croacus tried a new way of attacking. He raised the vines up, and then started slamming them down onto the heroes. For the most part, the group was able to dodge the vines.

And then, Bowser had a different idea. As a vine slammed down near him, he grabbed it. Thankfully the vines now didn't have spikes. When Bowser grabbed the vine, he raised it up and started spinning it like a lasso. Then, right as Croacus started to come out from his armor, Bowser threw it. It made a direct hit with Croacus, knocking the plant king back yet again.

Just then, Croacus tried a new plan of attack. All of the vines disappeared, leaving only Croacus remaining. Croacus then spun around the room encased in his armor, while breaking off various parts of it to be used as weapons that spun around the room.

Everyone else was able to dodge the weapons, and one by one, every time Croacus peeked out from his armor, they were able to hit him.

Bowser spewed out fire at him, Peach hit him with her parasol, Violet swung her sword at him, Mario jumped on him, and finally, dealing the final blow, Junior ducked into his shell and launched himself at Croacus.

At that, the fight was finally over. The group had at last won.

Weakened, Croacus fell down, the weapons and his armor disappearing. "Beau…tiful…" Croacus slowly said. "Even as I wilt… I am… I am… beautiful!"

The door opened. "K-King Croacus!" Several Floro Sapiens ran in, rushing right past the group and over to Croacus. "What… whoa! What did you guys DO, huh?"

"He had our Pure Heart and threatened us." Mario explained. "So we beat him up."

"Yeah, how's it feel, flowerface?!" Bowser added.

The Floro Sapien that yelled earlier turned to them. "Hey, shut up! You don't get it at all!"

"King Croacus was awesome!" Another Floro Sapien added. "He totally thought of his people first, man! And you… You wilted him!"

"What? What are you talking about?" Tippi questioned, confused as to what the Floro Sprouts were talking about.

"Water, man! I'm talking about water!" The first Floro Sapien explained. "The Cragnons were polluting our water! Those dudes were tossing trash into the river! We had to drink that crud!"

"That dirty water was what drove our king bonkers, don'tcha get it?" Another Floro Sapien added.

"So that would mean…" Peach said, trying to think until she realized it. "Oh…"

"Of course! I knew it all along!" The door opened again as Flint, Monzo, and Hornfels ran in. "Cragley Ho!" Flint yelled. " "Emergency special report from the Floro front lines! Environmental pollution drives Floro Sapiens mad! Whither will they rampage?""

Flint cleared his throat before speaking some more. "So the villagers throwing garbage into the river was the reason for this whole thing? Well… I tried to tell those guys, but my thoughts were too far ahead of their time…"

"This play well with green Cragnon crowd…" Hornfels said.

"Ratings explode, brah!" Monzo added. "It like "Crags on Ice" meets "Barn von Craggington"!"

"Yes, once my fellow villagers see this, they'll surely realize the error of their ways." Flint explained. "Once the words of Flint Cragley reach them, they'll throw garbage no more!"

"Yeah, water, man…" The second Floro Sapien said. "I mean, it's easily our most precious treasure, know what I mean? You promise not to dirty our water and we'll just chill down here and be cool. And we'll totally take those sprouts off your villagers' noggins too, man."

"Sounds like a fine way to keep the peace in the land…" Flint responded. "Keep those promises, folks!"

"That was a rather unexpected turn…" Tippi commented.

"Whaling on our king aside…" The first Floro Sapien started. "You guys are totally heroes… You should take this." He took something from the downed Croacus. "One of our earliest kings received this to safeguard until the heroes' arrival. Our people have kept that promise for, like, 1,500 years or something crazy like that… I'm sure our wilted king here would be stoked that this duty got done."

And at last… the sixth Pure Heart was presented and given to them. By now, the group was greatly weakened from their battle with O'Chunks and then Croacus right afterward. Surely, when they get to Flipside, they would need a good rest to prepare…

" Men of true grit witness live what others can only see through crag-vision."

" That is what moves me to travel into the belly of the beast week after week."

" Thanks again for watching, and until the next time… CRAGLEY HO!"

Having wrapped their latest shoot, Flint and crew went back to Downtown of Crag.

Mario and friends clutched the sixth Pure Heart as they walked back toward Flipside.

Our heroes had taken a new step toward overturning the prophecy of destruction…

The group of heroes exited the door and went back to Flipside, now with the sixth Pure Heart. To think, they already had six Pure Hearts… that was quite the accomplishment.

"So, are we gonna get some rest now?" Junior asked with a yawn. "I'm… getting pretty tired…" He blinked a couple times.

"Yes, some rest does sound good…" Tippi said.

"We probably should check with Merlon first, just to let him know we're back." Mario suggested.

The rest of the group agreed, and then started to go down the elevator. It seemed to go slower than usual.

"You know, I've been wondering about something a lot…" Violet said with a small sigh. "Do… you think we might find Luigi soon?"

There was silence.

Mario also couldn't stop thinking about it. Nothing made sense to him anymore. Just where was Luigi? What had he been doing this whole time? And now that he thought about it…

It had been a while since he saw a certain someone else… Someone he hadn't seen at all since where this all started, at Bowser's Castle. Just where was Kammy Koopa?

Luigi and Kammy… two who they hadn't seen at all since this started… Or… hang on a second…

Mario tried to recall something… from the "battle" he and Mr. L had. "Really? You've never met me? That's the funniest joke I've heard all day. It should be pretty obvious who I am, but if you can't figure it out, well that's your problem." That was the oddest thing out of anything Mr. L had said… but what did it mean? Had he met Mr. L before? Or… no… wait, that couldn't be possible…

A few stray ideas tried to form in Mario's head, but before they could, the elevator door opened, and apparently, while Mario had yet again been lost in his thoughts, a conversation had been going on, and Peach just giggled at a joke Bowser made, but stopped when she noticed how Mario looked.

"Are you feeling alright, Mario?" Peach asked. "…Aside from your arm?"

"…Yes." Mario lied. That was the most common lie anyone would say.

When the group stepped out of the elevator, they noticed how… quiet Flipside was. Usually, there would be at least a few townsfolk walking around. But today… there was total silence.

"Just where the heck is everyone?" Bowser asked out loud. "What, did they all of a sudden get scared of us or something?"

"This is very peculiar…" Tippi said. "Maybe we should check one of the buildings…"

The group ran over to the item shop for their first stop. Violet tried to open the front door, but it was locked. "Hello?" She asked, starting to knock on the door. No answer. "Hello?!" She yelled a bit louder.

"Maybe they're just closed?" Junior asked.

"No, that can't be, they're open 24 hours a day." Mario responded. "Hm…" He tried to look through a window next to the door, but it was blocked by a curtain on the other side.

"Let's try some other buildings." Violet suggested. But each building they tried was locked. Merlon's house, the inn, and the fortune teller place… all locked. And when they tried to use the elevator to go down…

"Why won't this stupid elevator work?" Bowser yelled. He pressed the down arrow button several times, but no elevator ever appeared.

"What exactly is going on here?" Peach wondered out loud. "All the doors are locked, nobody's here, and the elevator doesn't work!" A small feeling of dread was seeded within the group.

"I'm sure that there could be a logical explanation for all this…" Tippi tried to reason. "Maybe we should go back up…"

"Good idea, Tippi." Mario said, walking back over to the big elevator. He pressed it. Nothing happened. "Huh?" He pressed it again. Still nothing. "Are all of the elevators not working?"

The feeling of dread within the group grew further. Nothing about the current situation made sense. Why were the elevators not working? Why were all of the doors locked?

"Well, hello Mario and friends!" Merlon's sudden voice rang out from behind them. The group quickly turned around to see Merlon and several of the Flipside townsfolk a couple feet away from them.

"Oh, hello! You kinda showed up out of nowhere…" Mario said, rubbing the back of his neck.

"Yeah, that is a little strange." Violet commented. "Oh, Merlon, do you know why everything is locked or doesn't work?"

"Oh, oh yes! There is a very good explanation for that!" Merlon quickly answered. A pause.

"…And that explanation is?" Peach questioned after several seconds of silence.

"Hang on a second." Junior said. "…Merlon, what is that pink thing you have around your waist? And why does everyone beside you have one? Is that a new fashion trend or something?"

Suddenly, Merlon stopped right before coming up with an excuse. The tension seemed to suddenly rise. Mario was about to say something, and then…

" Any and all threats to The Darkness must be eliminated."

"Merlon's" eyes turned a sickly green, and so did the "townspeople" around him.

" Mario, Peach, Violet, Tippi, and Junior will be eliminated at once."

And then, with the Fake-I-Fiers they all wore on their waists, they turned back into their real forms: Eliminators.

"Just what the heck are those things?" Bowser quickly questioned. But there was no time for a response. Even though the group didn't know at all how and why the Eliminators got into Flipside, they only had one goal at the moment. Take down the Eliminators.

But as Mario prepared to run forward, and as Violet summoned a sword of ice, all of them realized something. They were greatly weakened from the battle with Croacus, and they have hardly had any breathers at all lately.

The Eliminators all prepared to attack them, raising their arm cannons at the group. Violet, though tired, attacked first. She ran forward with her sword, though a lot slower than usual. Behind her was Peach, ready with her trusty parasol.

Some of the Eliminators flew above the group, and then landed all around them, forming a complete circle around the group. Just how many Eliminators were there?

Violet ran toward one of the Eliminators and tried to swing her sword down, but she was far too slow, as the Eliminator grabbed her sword. The Eliminator then yanked her up by the sword, and quickly tossed her toward another Eliminator, her grip of the sword disappearing. The Eliminator then grabbed both ends of the sword and snapped it in two.

Violet flew in the air, right toward another Eliminator. Time slowed. Nobody would be able to get to her before what would happen next. The Eliminator that she was flying towards' vortex opened. And then, a second later, before Violet could register what was going on, got sucked into the vortex. The vortex closed. Time resumed.

"Violet!" Tippi yelled in panic.

"Hey! Give her back!" Mario practically screamed. …Even though one of them had been captured, they could still win… right?

"Violet has been eliminated." The Eliminator that captured Violet said.

Peach growled, and refocused her attention to that particular Eliminator. "Give her up, you monster!" Peach yelled, starting to try to run toward it. And her pace soon slowed, clearly still tired from the previous battles.

Due to Peach's slowed pace, the Eliminator was clearly able to see her attack coming. And so, the Eliminator counteracted by punching Peach in the face, causing her to fall down.

"Hey!" Bowser suddenly yelled, rushing forward to Peach. "You don't hurt Peach like that! …Or anyone else, for that matter!"

And yet, as Bowser ran forward to beat down the Eliminator that attacked Peach, the Eliminator raised its arm cannon, and out launched a giant net that encased Bowser, throwing him backwards and onto the ground. And to make matters even worse, several seconds later, Bowser roared in agony as electricity coursed through the net for several seconds straight.

"Unregistered threat has been neutralized." The Eliminator that unleashed the net said.

"Oh no! Dad!" Junior said, a few tears in his eyes, as he ran toward the net Bowser was encased in. As he got close, he dropped to his knees. "D-don't worry dad, I'll get you out of this…" Junior was hesitant to touch the net, remembering what happened the last time he touched something that recently electrified.

And yet, because Mario, Tippi, and Peach were focused on trying to take down other Eliminators, and because Junior was too focused on trying to free his dad, nobody saw until it was too late. Nobody saw the Eliminator sneak up behind Junior. The young koopa saw the shadow go over him, and turned around.

Once he did, the Eliminator grabbed him by his bib. Junior's eyes widened, and he tried to do anything to fight back. But it was futile. The Eliminator quickly unleashed its vortex and sucked Junior in with no remorse.

The vortex closed. "Junior has been eliminated."

At seeing two of their group get captured and one temporarily out of commission, Mario and Peach began to worry. Less than half of their active fighters were left, and they had taken out zero Eliminators. Tippi stayed close to Mario, wanting to stay safe.

"I'm… not… going to give up…" Mario said, very out of breath. He and Peach noticed that most of the Eliminators haven't done anything. They… only attacked when one of them attacked first…

Were the Eliminators… toying with them?

No time to dwell on that now. Several of the Eliminators flew up, and then started to quickly fly down toward Mario, Peach, and Tippi. Peach reacted quickly and pulled Mario to the ground, and just in time, because several Eliminators flew just over them.

Peach quickly picked herself up and pulled Mario up, Tippi clinging to his cap. The Eliminators that had stayed on the ground started to speed toward them from behind, and the flying Eliminators circled around to fly back toward them.

"Come on!" Peach yelled, grabbing Mario's left arm and pulling him forward, trying to break into a run. Mario and Peach both tried to run, but one of the Eliminators grabbed Mario's right arm and yanked him away from Peach flew high into the air, leaving her to deal with the Eliminators.

Peach held up her parasol as the Eliminators started to swarm around her. She couldn't give up. Not now. But at it was, there were dozens of Eliminators, and only one of her. Having no regrets, she charged at one of the Eliminators with a battle cry.

She got punched, kicked, and even hit with her own parasol multiple times before her body gave out. And that was finally when she was captured and sucked into the vortex. The Eliminator that held her parasol crumpled it into bits like it was a piece of paper.

" Peach has been eliminated."

Up above, Mario tried to hold in a scream, because the Eliminator holding him up by his right arm was gripping it so tight, right where the gauze was. At the moment, Mario didn't care about how high up above the ground he was. All he cared about was stopping the pain and getting free.

"Let go of me!" Mario screamed, starting to thrash about. His thrashing caused the Eliminator to jerk around violently. And then, with one kick to the Eliminator's jaw, the tight grip on Mario's arm was released…

…Leaving Mario to fall.

Mario screamed as he fell at least twenty-five feet to the ground. He tried to break his fall, but all too soon, he landed right on his right arm, causing him to let out another scream of pain.

Mario lie there for a few moments. He heard the whirring of the Eliminators. If he didn't at least try to get up, they would be upon him in seconds. Even though every part of himself felt like it was in agony, Mario pushed himself up onto his knees with his left arm.

He had to move, or at least try to. But when he did try, he started coughing up blood. Mario's vision became hazy. Time seemed to slow to an absolute still. Mario looked further in front of himself.

"T…T-Tippi…" Mario said, seeing the passed out butterfly in front of him. Tippi must have passed out and fallen to the ground sometime when Mario was taken into the air. Mario reached out to Tippi, and then gently cradled her in his left hand.

"I…have to… I-I have to… move…" Mario tried to stand up, at this point not even hearing the Eliminators right behind him. His eyes slowly closed as he passed out.

" So, little bro, anything you want for our birthday this year?"

" Hm… well, I've always wanted a-"

" Oh yes! I'll get you just that indeed! Don't worry about a single thing, little bro!"

" Mario, why are you acting so weird!? And… you usually never call me little bro…"

" Don't worry about a thing, little bro! I'm sure that around our birthday, everyone will get the surprise of a lifetime!"

"Mario and Tippi have been eliminated." The Eliminator said. He turned to face the other Eliminators. "Now, let's move." He, along with the other Eliminators quickly flew out of Flipside.

Sounds of a net being ripped apart could be heard. As Bowser finally managed to get the strength to rip open the net, he flung each piece aside as he got it off of himself. And eventually, he got the entire net off.

It took about a minute for everything to set in. Thanks to the electric net, Bowser had multiple burn marks all over his body, his chest hurt, and he was a little short of breath. Bowser tried to stand up, but it was difficult due to all of the injuries and pain he was in.

It didn't take Bowser long to piece together what happened. Because he had seen Violet get captured by… whatever those robots were called, and the fact that he didn't see anyone else, all of them had to have been captured…

…Which meant that he was completely alone.

"Great. Just freaking great." Bowser groaned. Just what was he supposed to do now? He was weak, injured, all alone… And as far as he knew, he couldn't even leave. All of this slowly started settling in. What was he supposed to do? Wait here until the Void destroyed everything?

Bowser saw an untouched bench nearby, and decided to sit on it, and he did with a sigh. Just… what could he do now? How would he be able to get to those robots that captured everyone else?

" It sounds like you need some  help,  Koopa!"

The sudden, familiar voice caused Bowser to snap up. He definitely knew that voice. A voice that he familiarized with horrible, horrible hatred, and for good reason. A voice that was like a poison to him, with no cure.

Mr. L.

The minion of Count Bleck himself revealed himself before Bowser could say anything. Mr. L jumped in from below the floor, coming in from the side.

"Well, well, well Koopa, looks like you've gone and caught yourself in quite a pickle, haven't you! And just for future reference, even though there might not be a future, those robots are called Eliminators." Mr. L quickly said without any break.

"W-w-what the?" Bowser sputtered out. He got up off of the bench he previously sat on. "You!" Memories of Mr. L brutally beating up Mario came back to him. "I'm gonna… I'm gonna…"

"Kill me? Is that what you were going to say?" Mr. L questioned.

Bowser paused. "…Yes. That's what I was going to say! So what? I can do it right now if I want to!"

"You can?" Mr. L laughed. "Then go ahead. Give me your best shot." Mr. L then stood still. Without warning, Bowser tried to rush toward Mr. L, only to falter and fall after taking a couple steps due to how weak he still was.

Mr. L laughed, and started to circle around the fallen koopa. "I knew it, Koopa. You can't stand a chance against me, especially because of all those battles you face so often. It's sad how many ineffective strategies you insist on using, wasting your precious time and energy."

"Just shut up!" Bowser yelled. He soon managed to get the energy to stand up. "And… just why the heck are you here, anyway? Just to insult me?"

" Well, no actually. You see, I had wanted to find Jumpman, in order to-"

"In order to what? Finish him off?" Bowser interrupted in rage.

Mr. L paused. "Well… maybe you could say that."

Bowser stopped for a moment. Was it just him, or… did Mr. L sound a little different in that last statement? Also… there was a strange… aura around Mr. L? It was hard to describe, he couldn't really see it at all, it was just… there.

"Allow me to explain." Mr. L cleared his throat as he casually leaned against a wall. "I had already known that the Eliminators would arrive here around this time. After all, their attack patterns are so obvious even a child could figure it out. So, I decided to stay here and specifically disable the elevators after one was used once, so that Jumpman didn't have anywhere to run. But it looks like those Eliminators decided to come here a bit earlier than I predicted, which is where you come in, Koopa!"

Bowser was silent, waiting for what Mr. L would say next.

" So, Koopa, I was thinking… we could make a deal!"

"…What?" Bowser questioned, a little confused.

"Oh come on, Koopa! I'm sure you know what a deal is!" Mr. L said, not leaning on the wall anymore. He started walking toward Bowser. "You know, when one person makes an agreement with another, when each part of the agreement has their own good side… You know! So, let's make a deal!"

Once Mr. L was close enough to Bowser, he extended his arm out to the Koopa King. "You help me find Jumpman, and I'll help you find everyone else you're looking for! Doesn't that sound great?!"


Bowser shook his head, turned around, and crossed his arms. "Do you really think I'm that stupid?"

"What?" Mr. L questioned, slightly taken aback.

"You heard me." Bowser turned back around, angry, arms still crossed. "That sounds like the actual worst deal I have ever heard. Firstly, Mario is part of the "everyone else" I'm looking for, so that wouldn't give me a single advantage."

" Well, I was going to add that-"

"Second!" Bowser interrupted. "Why would I make a deal with you, when you're the one that decided it was a good idea to try and kill Mario, and stab him in his arm with a knife!"

Mr. L didn't say anything for a moment. He then cleared his throat. "Well, that's what happens when he decides to try to break my arm."

Bowser noticed it again. Mr. L's voice changed… again. "Well, you were going to stab him!"

"Why wouldn't I?" Mr. L questioned, walking to Merlon's house. "If you know the reason, then it should become obvious."

"Then what is the reason, cause I sure as heck don't know it!" Bowser yelled.

Mr. L shrugged. "Well, if you don't know, then I don't feel the need to tell you."

Bowser sighed. How could Mr. L act so… casual about this? "W-well… the only thing I'm worried about is finding a way out of here! So why don't you tell me that?"

"Well, of course I know a way out of here. If you'd have done some digging around earlier, then you should've found it by now." Mr. L said, standing right next to Merlon's door.

"Why do you feel the need to keep insulting me?" Bowser questioned, starting to get very tired of Mr. L's attitude.

"I think it's simple. You say you're the "King Of Koopas,"" Mr. L used air quotes. "But the King Of Koopas shouldn't be going soft and befriending their enemies."

Bowser blushed a little, realizing Mr. L was right "W-What do you mean by that? I'm not befriending anyone! Especially not you!" At least that last part was true.

" I'm not talking about befriending me, idiot. I'm obviously talking about you befriending your worst enemy, Jumpman."

Bowser paused. He didn't know how to respond for a moment. He didn't like to admit it, but… He breathed in deeply.

"Yeah? So what if I befriend Mario? Is that such a big problem with you? Huh? I'm King Of The Koopas, I can befriend whoever I want to! Just because I'm a king doesn't mean I have to always make enemies with everyone!" Bowser breathed heavily after his rant.

Mr. L just took in what Bowser said. After a moment, he laughed. "Well, well, looks like you're braver than you thought. Admitting that you want to be friends with your sworn enemy? Well well well, I wonder how Jumpman will take it, if you haven't told him already."

"…Nope. Haven't told him." For the time being, Bowser's pride got in the way of himself. He couldn't just waltz up to Mario and ask, "Hey wanna be friends?"

"Well, I'm getting bored." Mr. L said with a yawn. "I'm looking to get out of here as soon as possible." Mr. L swiftly kicked down the door to Merlon's house. "The exit is in here. Let's just get it over with."

As Bowser walked over the fallen door and into the house, he saw Mr. L roughly slam down a large shelf that was supported by the right wall, breaking almost everything that was on that shelf.

"Hey, why are you breaking all of Merlon's stuff?" Bowser questioned, but he didn't get an answer, as Mr. L felt the wall the shelf used to be on, Mr. L punched it to show that it was a lot weaker, and climbed through the hole.

Bowser followed him, and saw Mr. L sliding down a pole that was inside the hole. Bowser grabbed the pole and slid down it after Mr. L. He slid for around half a minute before landed on a dark surface. Mr. L illuminated the area by letting out a little bit of green electricity from his hand, and walking down a short hallway.

At the end of the hallway, Mr. L didn't have to illuminate it with his hand anymore, because something else did. A huge, rainbow portal, hidden in Merlon's basement this whole time.

"Hang on a second!" Bowser yelled. "How did you know this was here, and do you even know where this goes?"

Mr. L turned to Bowser. "1, you don't need to know that, and 2, I don't know that." Before Bowser could ask any more questions, Mr. L jumped into the portal. A second later, Bowser jumped after him.

Chapter Text

For the entire night, Peridot and Lion stayed in the alleyway near Dimmsdale. Lion had fallen asleep almost a few minutes after he lied down, but it took Peridot a few hours to fall asleep herself, leaning on Lion. And yet, the sun seemed to rise far too soon for either of them.

As the sun started to rise, Lion began to open his eyes as he slowly woke up. He yawned, stood up, and stretched, accidentally making Peridot fall off of him, waking the green Gem up. Peridot shot up, instantly becoming alert. She paused.

"Oh, right." Peridot said, quickly remembering how and why she was there. She got out her tape recorder. "Log Date, 7 14 2, continued." She started to walk around while Lion tried to get into a trash bin. "Since the sun has started to rise, I have decided to continue my search for a way off of this gem-forsaken planet." She looked around, noticing how Lion had opened the bin and begun pulling things out of it.

"And with my new and brilliant disguise," Peridot continued, gesturing to the jacket wrapped around her forehead. "Nobody will ever notice that my Gem is cracked!" She giggled at her apparent genius. "Lion!" The pink animal stopped what he was doing and trotted over to Peridot.

"Alright Lion, you and I are going to search this town for a ship or something that can take me back to Homeworld. Understand?" Peridot quickly explained. Lion just stared. "Why do you just… stare?" Obviously, Lion didn't answer. "Creep."

Peridot walked out of the alley, Lion following behind. "So, I was thinking of trying a new course of action." Peridot begun to explain. "I am considering finding the first person I see and interrogating them until they tell me where a way off of Earth. I'm sure nothing will go wrong."

She looked around, noticing how seemingly nobody was around. "Why is there nobody here? The sun is coming up, so that should mean people are here!" Peridot looked around one more time, and then her eyes lit up. "Oh, there's one!"

Peridot pointed to a man sitting across the street sitting at a bus stop. The man held up a newspaper over his face as he read it, trying to conceal himself. But that didn't stop Peridot.

"Hey! You!" Peridot yelled to the man, pointing at him. The man either didn't hear her or chose to ignore her, because he kept reading the newspaper. "Hey! I'm talking to you!" Still no response. In frustration, Peridot ran across the street, up to the man, and smacked the newspaper out of his hands, letting the newspaper fall to the ground.

"Hey, what's your problem, la-" The man begun before getting a better look a Peridot. He immediately paused.

"My 'problem' is that you were ignoring me." Peridot deadpanned. Lion walked up to her and sat down. "And I did what I had to do to get your attention. It's really simple logic." The man still stared at her. "What is with you all and staring today?"

"Are… are you…" The man tried to ask, but couldn't finish his question.

"Am I… what?" Peridot asked, a little confused.

"…Never mind." The man shook his head. "…Just… ugh! Why am I constantly seeing these… creatures everywhere again?"

"Uh… I don't… what?"

"Just a few days ago, I saw one of those… koopas." The man answered. Though Peridot didn't know what a 'koopa' was, she went along with it. "I've been staying in this town for a little while, and… wait, why am I even talking to you? No, I told myself I wouldn't, and here I am." He quickly stood up. "I have to go."

"Wait!" Peridot yelled, seeing the man run off, chasing after him a couple seconds later. "I still need to interrogate you!" Lion came running next to her a few seconds later.

Peridot and Lion ran after the man. Despite the man seeming to be only around 5'4 and thin, he was a great runner, managing to keep the distance between himself and Peridot, and even slowly getting away from her.

They ran down the sidewalk, going down several turns every so often. Soon enough, the man found Dimmsdale Park, thinking he could lose Peridot there. However, as he looked back, Peridot and Lion were still chasing him. So, he pushed himself to run faster.

As the man ran toward a set of swings, Lion roared toward the swings, causing a shockwave that knocked the swings over right in front of the man. Somehow, the man reacted in time and rolled out of the way to the right, and then continued running.

Peridot and Lion continued to chase him, and did so throughout several locations. They ran through the Dimmsdale Auto Show parking lots, maneuvering around several cars. They then got to the Cake 'N' Bacon where the man quickly ran in and then ran out through the back exit, trying to throw off Peridot and Lion.

The man's evasive maneuvers only seemed to help him a little. The next place they ran through was Dimmsdale City Hall, and then Adrenaland, Dimmsdale Skate Park, and finally Dimmsdale Jail.

Because the man had been taking roundabout routes, Peridot and Lion slowly were catching up to him. The man saw a tall chain-link fence ahead of him. When he was close enough, he grabbed it and started climbing it as fast as he could.

When he got to the top, he tried to go down the other side gently, but ended up falling and ripping a part of his shirt off, before picking himself back up and started running off. Several seconds later, Peridot got to the fence and tried to climb it, only to fall down each time she attempted.

Then, Lion rammed the fence, knocking it down completely. But by the time he did that, the man was already long gone. So, Lion walked off the fence and lied on the ground.

"Well, this is just perfect!" Peridot yelled, sarcasm laced in her words. "I spend at least a half-hour chasing that guy so I can interrogate him, and he just… gets away!" She began to pace near the fence. "I don't even know what he was talking about, with those 'koopas', and 'creatures'…"

She paused, seeing Lion roll onto his back. "And it's just… who was he?" Peridot continued. "This entire thing was just a whole waste of time! Who knows how much time is left before the Cluster emerges and destroys this whole planet! I don't know where I can find a ship, I don't know that even if I can find a ship, I don't know if it'll be able to go to Homeworld, and…"

Peridot tried to think of a third and last complaint. "And… I didn't even get to know the guy's name! He never told me!" Peridot dramatically went to her knees near the fallen chain-link fence. She looked at the fence, and noticed something that had been ripped sticking to it.

"What's this?" Peridot asked, standing up and walking to the fallen fence. Upon further inspection, she saw that what had fallen was a small piece of paper attached to a tiny piece of clothing. Peridot picked it up and looked at what the paper read.

"My… name… M?" She raised an eyebrow. "M? Seriously? What kind of name is M, that's so stupid!" Peridot paused, and quickly shoved the paper into the jacket she wore around her forehead. She sighed. "Come on, Lion, I guess we should search the rest of this town for a ship or something."

Peridot slowly walked off, and Lion soon stood up and walked after her. Though the name "M" seemed weird for a name that someone would have, that would have to be what Peridot would have to refer to that man as…

If she ever saw him again.

Mark and Timmy had gone to the Dimmsdale Dump. Mark remembered that his ship should be in the dump. At least, that's what he thought.

"This should be a piece of cake." Timmy said, walking through the trash to where Mark's ship should be. "All we have to do is go into your spaceship to get that second wand and where's your spaceship!" Timmy yelled, upon getting closer and seeing that there was a huge crater where Mark's ship should've been.

"What?" Mark asked. Timmy glared at him. "Oh, right! I sorta left it on Yugopatamia, which is, of course, gonzo!" Mark explained. "But, the good news is, I have no idea where this blue moon is that we seek!" He paused. "Oh wait, bad news, yeah, I meant to say the bad news is I have no idea where the blue moon is."

"Okay, so we have no ship," Timmy began listing off. "We have no idea where the blue moon is, and there's no one to help us because The Darkness has captured all my friends and loves ones!"

"Uh, is there anyone that hates you or is a villain in general that can help us?" Mark asked.

Timmy paused for a moment. Then, narrowing his eyes, he smirked, a plan formulating in his head.

Lightning bolts struck as yet again, as Abracatraz gained several new prisoners. Those prisoners were being led through a hallway by several Eliminators behind them, pointing their laser blasters at the prisoners as a threat so they wouldn't escape.

Those prisoners happened to be Terrance, Tamara, Chester, AJ, and Trixie.

"Where are we again?" Tamara asked, unsure of where exactly they all were.

"The last thing I remember is that we were about to take a look at Timmy's permanent records before I sucked into the face of a man who looked like me!" Terrance explained.

"Wait, you were going through his permanent records?" Chester asked. "Did you get to the part where he only ate cheese in the fourth grade?"

"Wow, really? No wonder he was always so constipated around then!" Terrance responded.

"I'll just get it out so I can find that page." Tamara said, reaching into her pocket to find Timmy's records. However, when she expected to pull out the records, she just had an empty pocket. She checked her other pocket, and it was empty. "That's strange, I could've sworn I had it!"

"You know what's even stranger?" Terrance added. "I could've sworn I just had my camera before I got here, but now that's gone too!"

"Hmm…" AJ thought out loud. "I surmise we've been abducted by an alien super-race that can shapeshift into any form they want!"

"Aliens?" Chester asked. "Then that blog, "Keep Beach City Weird" must be true!"

"Seriously?" Trixie questioned. "Because some guy on a random blog wrote it, you're going to believe it?"

"The kid's right. We're aliens." One of the Eliminators explained.

"Riiight." Trixie said, not believing it. "What are you going to show us next? Fairies? Other aliens?"

"Well, I could believe that fairies exist…" Tamara said.

"But there is no way that other aliens exist!" Terrance added with a laugh. "I'd need a batch of weenies even worse than the one I ate before I came in here in order to believe that!"

Chester looked at the cells they were walking past. While the previous ones held fairies, the inhabitants of the newer cells contained various people that seemed to be in a blocky shape, almost as if they were from a different dimension.

But before Chester could question it, they got to the cell where they would be forced to stay in. One of the Eliminators opened the cell door, and the other one pushed the prisoners in and locked the door behind them.

And what the five prisoners saw when they were forcefully pushed into the cell were the other occupants, all of their eyes now drawn to the prisoners. Those other occupants were Jorgen, Timmy's fairies, the Crystal Gems, and Steven.

Terrance and Tamara, at finally seeing Cosmo and Wanda for themselves, finally proving that fairies do exist, promptly fainted on the spot. Chester, AJ, and Trixie momentarily fainted at seeing the other aliens.

"Awesome! A fainting party!" Cosmo said, misunderstanding why they fainted. He then fainted himself.

"I'm down for that." Amethyst said, also fainting, which caused Pearl to sigh in exasperation.

It wasn't too long for the five that had just entered to wake back up. But right as they woke up, several Eliminators walked toward the door, carrying even more prisoners. The door opened, but only just long enough to get all six additional prisoners inside.

The first of them was Merlon, who had been beat up due to other Eliminators. The next three were Violet, Junior, and Peach. The three of them were all heavily exhausted after their onslaught of constant battle after battle.

And the last of the six were… Mario, with Tippi resting on his hat. Mario wasn't even awake. He was still passed out. The yellow gauze on his right arm had started to become red due to previous events.

The six of them were pushed into the cell, and it was locked a moment later. No words could be spoken. In the span of a couple minutes, the size of inhabitants in the cell had increased by 11.

"Well, this is… awkward…" Steven said, voicing the thoughts of everyone in the cell.

Inside of the Crocker Cave, which was located under Crocker's house, Crocker sat at a desk. He used a toothpick to grab one of several weenies on a plate. "Yes!" He ate the weenie.

"After thirty-two years of searching," Crocker began to list off. "Thirteen nervous breakdowns," Crocker flicked away the toothpick. "And four thousand cocktail weenies, today's the day my atomic magic seeking magnoscope will locate the legendary Fairy World!" Crocker walked up to said magnoscope, which was huge, that he had been working on for a long time.

Crocker inputted coordinates into a computer, and then looked into the magnoscope. Outside, the magnoscope emitted a large, pink beam into the sky. On the magnoscope viewfinder, it only showed space.

"Fairy World not detected." The magnoscope robotically said in a feminine voice.

"Curses!" Crocker yelled, shaking his fist in the air at his failure. He decided to turn around, and screamed because he saw Timmy and Mark. "I didn't steal anything! I mean-"

Crocker screamed as Mark picked him up and shook him roughly for several seconds. "Bad news," Mark began as he let go of Crocker, letting the teacher fall to the floor. "He's not a black hole sucky dude. Oh, I mean good news!"

"Turner, what's going on?" Crocker questioned as he stood up. "And how did you smuggle the squid past mother?"

"Long story short." Timmy began. "I'm being hunted by a big black hole in space and I need you to help me find a mystical and magical dark blue moon."

"Tell me you have fairies and we have a deal!" Crocker smirked evilly.

"I have fairies." Timmy dully responded.

"No use in denying it-" Crocker started to scream, until he realized that Timmy actually confessed. "Well that was anticlimactic. But I am a man of my word." Crocker straightened up and walked to the magnoscope.

"On my many failed attempts to find Fairy World, one of which ended in me finding a while planet that was broken in many pieces," Crocker began to explain. "I did find this blue moon in the Vegan System." He focused on the moon in the magnoscope. "It gave off a large magic reading, but I detected no life on the planet."

"Let me see." Timmy said, running over to the magnoscope. Crocker moved out of the way so Timmy could look. "The star crate! That's it!" Timmy said. He turned around. "I need to get to that moon. Fast!"

Crocker walked over to a purple button and pressed it. The entire floor of the Crocker Cave split in two as a giant red and white rocket slowly rose. Smoke filled the cave for several seconds before it was cleared.

"Dude, aren't you a teacher?" Mark asked. "How can you afford this stuff?"

"Remember the funds that went missing for the new school science wing?" Crocker answered with his own question.

"Yeah?" Timmy responded.

"You're looking at them." Crocker answered. By now, the rocket had fully emerged.

"And this will get us to the blue moon of Vegan?" Timmy asked another question.

Crocker pulled a small remote with an antennae and a singular button out of his pocket. "Does this answer your question?" He pressed the button. The entire cave started to shake as the rocket begun to quickly take off. The roof to Crocker's house opened as to let the rocket out, and then the rocket soared out of the atmosphere and into the depths of space.

"We probably should've been on that." Crocker realized way too late.

Mark screamed as another chance of saving his planet got away from him. "What are we gonna do now? I need to save my planet! And I cannot pull a spaceship out of my pants!"

"Calm down, we know where the second wand is, and I can get us a spaceship." Timmy assured. "All I need is a high-speed internet connection, a laptop, and a whoopee cushion."

Mark reached into his Fake-I-Fier. Several seconds later, he pulled out three things: a long, yellow wire, a small laptop, and a pink whoopee cushion. Crocker and Timmy looked at each other, and then at Mark.

"What?" Mark asked. "I said I couldn't pull a spaceship out of my pants."

Connie and Greg continued the long and slow journey toward Dimmsdale. As of right now, they weren't too far from their destination. They only had a few more miles to go.

"Geez, is it sunrise already?" Greg asked, looking at how far the sun rose. "We've gotta hurry!"

"Well, I'm sure Steven is safe… I hope." Connie said, very worried. "…Can't we get there any faster?"

"I'm going as fast as I can, Connie!" Greg responded, pushing the gas down as hard as he could. "I sure hope there's a gas station soon, cause-" The car suddenly started to slow to a stop. "I'm out of gas."

"Oh no!" Connie said. "We were so close!"

Greg sighed. "Let's just get out of the van." He got out of the van, followed by Connie. "I guess I'll just have to call someone." He got out his phone. "…And it's dead."

"Mine's dead too…" Connie added. "What are we going to do?"

"…I guess we'll have to push the van to a gas station in Dimmsdale." Greg answered.

"We can't push the van that far!" Connie argued.

"Well, what do you want me to do about it?" Greg asked. "It's not like I'm rich and I can just call a helicopter whenever I want!" There was a pause. "Hmm… let's just look and see if there's anyone around here that can help us."

"Okay, I'll look over here." Connie said, pointing to a bunch of trees that led to a forest.

"And I'll look in this direction." Greg said, pointing to other trees on the other side of the street.

Connie and Greg temporarily went their separate ways, looking for anyone that could help them. For several minutes, Connie didn't see anything. But she did, however, hear something rustle in a tree. She paused, and stood silent to listen.

After around a minute, there was another rustle. Connie drew out her sword. "Hello?" She cautiously called out. No response. Connie walked closer to the tree that the rustling had come from. When she walked closer, it rustled again.

Connie paused. "Who's there?" She took one more step toward the tree.

And then, there was a scream, and the occupant of the tree fell onto the grass.

"Ugh, that's the last time I hide inside a tree…" An old, feminine voice said. She was Kammy Koopa. Kammy picked herself up to stand. "Now, where was I…"

"Uh… who are you?" Connie asked, very confused.

"Oh, it was you!" Kammy yelled. "You're the one who woke me up and scared me out of the tree!" She pointed her wand at Connie.

"Well, I'm sorry! Now, may I ask again, who are you?" Connie repeated.

"Ugh, you young whippersnappers don't know anything!" Kammy then coughed. "Very well. I am Kammy Koopa, and I am a part of Bowser's army. And, I-"

"Wait wait wait." Connie interrupted. "Just who the heck is Bowser, and what even is a "koopa", and how'd you even get-"

"You young people always interrupting your elders and constantly asking questions!" Kammy yelled. "People like you need to be taught a lesson!" Kammy aimed her wand at Connie.

"And what does "being taught a lesson" mean?" Connie questioned, aiming her sword at Kammy.

"Connie, have you-" Greg said, had deciding to check the other part of the woods. And when he did, he saw Connie and Kammy, both of them looking like they were about to fight. "What the heck is going on here? Who's that lady?"

"Mr. Universe!" Connie exclaimed. "Um…"

"Well, well, well…" Kammy said with a small smile. "And just who is this fine man?"

"Oh no no no, I'm not… available right now." Greg quickly said before Kammy got any wrong ideas.

Kammy frowned. "Oh…"

There was an awkward silence.

"So, you were thrust from your own world when your leader and an unwilling princess were married by an evil Count Bleck, and unleashed an evil force that could take over the world!" Connie recited. Her, Greg, and Kammy were walking back to the van.

"Doesn't that sound at least a little dangerous?" Greg asked.

"Well yeah, but it could make for a great sequel to the Unfamiliar Familiar series!" Connie argued. "The ending of Destiny's End was a little disappointing to me, but if the series was continued, there are so many new possibilities that could be explored!"

Earlier, after Greg had accidentally walked in on Connie and Kammy, they had all calmed down and started talking to each other, explaining their respective stories. After a little while, they agreed to team up and help each other out. Soon, they got to the van.

"So, your magic can really put gas in the van?" Greg asked Kammy.

"And it can charge both of our phones?" Connie added.

"Yes yes yes!" Kammy answered. "Stop yapping and just watch!" From Kammy's wand shot out various shapes of different colors, aimed at Greg's van. When the magic hit the van, it glowed many different colors. When more magic hit Connie and Greg's phones, the same thing happened.

"Hey, my phone's turning on!" Connie said, excited. "And it's at full battery!"

"Hey, so is mine!" Greg added. "Okay, let's check this van out!" Greg got in the van, and it soon started up. "Alright guys, get in! Let's set a course for Dimmsdale!" Connie and Greg soon got in.

And then as the van left, a new passenger in tow… Another bush shook. Other bushes started to shake, each one getting further and further away from Dimmsdale…

Chapter Text

The Crocker Rocket soared through space, seemingly to no destination. After a while, it passed right by the Death Ball. The Death Ball is a giant spaceship, it's purpose being Dark Laser's lair and mobile command base.

Dark Laser was created by Timmy several months ago. Timmy had wished for a copy machine that could turn anything he scanned to life. Timmy scanned a character from one of his comic books, Dark Laser, turning him to life. But in the comic book, Dark Laser was a villain, so problems quickly arose afterward.

Inside the Death Ball, two of Dark Laser's lackeys were sitting at a computer, laughing at what was on the screen. Dark Laser, noticing the small commotion, walked over to them.

"What's so funny?" Dark Laser questioned. The two lackeys immediately stopped laughing and went silent.

"Um…" One of the lackeys started to say, unsure how to put it. "You… probably wouldn't find it funny, sir."

"What do you mean, I'm Dark Laser!" Dark Laser said. "I have a great sense of humor." He turned to look at the computer screen, but when he did, he was so flabbergasted that he rubbed his eyes to make sure he wasn't seeing things. "Leaping light-years!" Dark Laser took another look at the screen.

The screen depicted a YouTube video showing an animated, chibi Dark Laser doing strange dances while singing, "I'm Fart Laser, I'm Fart Laser, pull my finger, I'm Fart Laser!" Wh

Enraged, Dark Laser pushed his lackeys out of the way to get a better look at the computer screen. "Who posted these lies?" Scanning the screen, he saw that the video had a perfect 5 Star rating, and despite it only being uploaded around 20 minutes ago, it was nearly at a million views. And then, he saw who created the video.


Timmy, Crocker, Mark all stood on the front lawn of Crocker's house. Timmy held a laptop and was smiling to himself. "Three, two, one." Timmy closed the laptop.

Momentarily, the three of them looked up, and saw the Death Ball quickly coming down for a landing on the lawn. It landed, the door opening a few seconds later, followed by a ramp to walk down. But Dark Laser ignored the ramp, jumping down straight to right in front of Timmy, and he pulled out a red, glowing light stick.

"Timmy Turner, this time you've gone too far." Dark Laser threatened. "I told you about my irritable fall in confidence!"

On the other side of the sidewalk, three teens were riding their bicycles, but stopped when they saw Dark Laser. "It's Fart Laser! From YouTube!" The three of them began laughing, but Dark Laser turned around, his hand glowing green, allowing him to pick up the teens from far away. He then flung the now frightened teens into a nearby tree.

"Uh, can we talk about this another time?" Timmy asked. "There are way more important matters we need to deal with right now."

Before anyone could say anything else, they all heard loud screaming followed by loud footsteps. Crocker and Mark turned around, only to scream as a large, pink lion and his rider trample both of them. Lion then skidded to a stop right next to Timmy, inadvertedly flinging his rider, Peridot, off, causing her to tumble.

Peridot then stood up, grumbling while getting grass off of herself. "Lion, I told you not to do that, since you'll-" She looked up, and saw the Death Ball. "Oh my stars…" Stars were in her eyes. "It's a ship! A ship that I can use to get off this gem forsaken planet!"

"Uh, that's my ship you're talking about, lady." Dark Laser said, his attention now focused on Peridot. "And just what kind of lady is green, anyway?"

"Well excuse me, pebble!" Peridot retaliated. "I just happen to have a very important reason to get off this hunk of rock, and your ship I now claim as mine, since I most likely outrank you in every way possible. I mean, you don't even look like a Gem! At least, not one that I've seen."

"Why, you…" Dark Laser said. He aimed his light stick at Peridot. "Turner making that video of me was bad enough, but you-"

"Uh, green lady!" Timmy yelled, getting Peridot's attention. "Can you tell your pink lion to stop sniffing me!" Timmy tried to run from Lion, but the pink animal soon bounded upon Timmy and knocked the 11-year-old to his stomach, making him frustrated.

Peridot saw this and ran over to Lion. "Lion, don't attack strangers!" Lion then stepped off of Timmy, allowing Timmy to get up. He glared at Peridot and Lion.

"Do you mind training your lion a little better as to not tackle everyone he sees?" Timmy questioned, very annoyed.

"I don't have any time to train him!" Peridot argued. "There's no time to wait around and train because it is very important that I get off of this planet as soon as possible!"

"Yeah, well I have to get off of this planet too but you don't see me walking around using wild animals to attack people!" Timmy yelled.

"Well what do you want me to do about it?"

"Maybe tell him to stop! And why is he even pink anyway?"

"I don't know!"

Crocker and Mark had only gotten up a few moments ago, and were walking over to Peridot. "You know, green lady," Crocker began. "You really need to watch where your pets are running, cause I think he just took about a year off my lifespan."

"And, uh, are you like, another alien?" Mark added.

Peridot cleared her throat. "One: Stop calling me green lady! It's Peridot! Two: I just said I can't control him most of the time, and three…" She paused, getting another look at Mark. "…Oh. You're a Yugopatamian."

"And?" Mark asked, wanting Peridot to continue.

"Well, I did have logs of Yellow Diamond attempting to colonize your planet, but soon had her fleets retreat due to how… gross your planet is." Peridot cringed as she said the last part. "And I also saw another log about a planet inhabited by "Gigglepies" that colonization was quickly shut down on, though it didn't say why."

"Aw man, my planet didn't get colonized!" Mark responded, sad. "Oh, I mean, yes, my planet didn't get colonized!"

"Anyway…" Dark Laser said, about to change the topic again. "Why did you even come here?"

Peridot sighed in exasperation. "I already told you, I-"


"Oh no." Timmy said, recognizing that voice.

Vicky, who still had a cold, was walking down the street to try to reinvigorate herself. However, when she had seen Timmy, she stopped and had yelled what everyone just heard.

Vicky quickly began stomping over to Timmy. "Out of my way!" She shoved Crocker and Mark to the side, so she could get a clear path to Timmy. Once she was a foot away, she stopped.

"Uh, Vicky, I think this might be a bad ti-" Timmy tried to say, until Vicky interrupted him by grabbing his shirt and pulling him up to eye level.

"Thanks to this cough, I-" Vicky suddenly paused when she had to cough. She let go of Timmy and he fell to the ground, letting Vick cover her mouth with her arm. "Thanks to this cou-" She coughed again. "Thanks to-" Another cough.

"Oh, Vicky!" Mark said, quickly slithering over to her, worried. "What ailment befalls you so that I can find the cure that you-" Vicky wasn't having any of it and threw Mark over her shoulder, sending him flying halfway through the wall of Crocker's house.

"Oh, is the mailman here already?" Crocker's mother, Dolores asked from inside the house.

Vicky coughed several more times before she was able to stop. "Thanks to this stupid cough, I couldn't babysit you last Sunday, and then your parents decided to fire me yesterday, and now you're over here living it up with a giant ship, your crazy teacher, that foreign exchange student, some guy dressed up as a comic book character, and that green lady with a pink lion!"

Peridot frowned. "That. Is. Not. My NAME!" She screamed, and a moment later charged at Vicky. The redhead quickly countered by kicking the green Gem back several feet.

Peridot soon stood back up. "Um, next time, could you please not kick me where my coat is?"

"Hm, lemme think about it." Vicky paused, pretending to be in deep thought. "Um, no."

A few seconds later, Lion began to growl at Vicky, who responded by laughing nervously. "Uh, nice kitty?" Vicky screamed as she soon ran away from Lion, who had started to chase after her, teeth bared.

"Awesome!" Timmy said. He looked around. Mark had just freed his head from the wall, Lion was chasing Vicky while Peridot was laughing, and Crocker was conversing with Dark Laser.

After several seconds, Peridot stopped laughing. "Alright, I've waited long enough. I'm just going to get on the ship now." She quickly began to walk over to the ramp that lead to the ship, but Dark Laser quickly spotted her and stood in front of her, blocking her way.

"And just where do you think you're going?" Dark Laser questioned.

"Going on the ship?" Peridot answered. "I mean, where else would I be going?" Dark Laser then glared at her, and Peridot glared back. Several seconds passed.

Unexpectedly, Peridot went to her knees. "Oh please please please PLEASE let me on the ship! See there's this geoweapon that's embedded in the Earth's core and it can take it's form at any moment so that's why I need to get off this planet as soon as possible please please please!" She pleaded without any breaks in her sentence.

"What?" Dark Laser asked, not understanding anything that Peridot just said.

Timmy walked up to Peridot and sighed. "Look, you have to get off this planet because of some Cluster thing, and I have to get off this planet because I have to find a wand on a blue moon in order to stop an ancient, swirling, giant cloud of dark gas!"

"And?" Peridot raised an eyebrow.

"And, why don't we just agree to work together so that we can all agree to accomplish everything we need to faster?" Timmy asked with a nervous smile.

"Hm…" Peridot thought for a moment. "Can you take me back to Homeworld?"

"Yes, yes, I can take you to Homeworld." Timmy turned around. "Let's hope there are no more surprises. Crocker, Mark, let's-"

He stopped, as did everyone else. Around a dozen feet above them all, a huge, rainbow portal appeared. A couple seconds later, a man in strange clothes, Mr. L, landed on the ground. A few more seconds passed, and then Bowser appeared, falling in a heap on the ground. The portal then closed.

"Who the heck are they?" Vicky questioned.

"That's what I was about to ask!" Mark said. "Vicky, you truly must be in-" Vicky kicked Mark away.

"Okay, let me guess." Timmy said, walking up to Bowser and Mr. L. "Let's see…" He looked at Bowser. "Bigger version of Junior, so you must be his dad, and…" He turned to Mr. L, and… he had absolutely no clue. He could've sworn he did, but it was just something preventing him from figuring it out… almost like a wall, or an aura… "I have absolutely no idea."

"Buck Teeth has 'absolutely no idea'. How expected." Mr. L said, laughing only a moment later.

"Buck teeth?" Timmy questioned, unsure if it was an insult.

Bowser then stood up and looked around. "Mr. L! Just where the heck did this portal take us?"

"This is Dimmsdale." Crocker answered before Mr. L could. "Weird. You don't see a portal come out from the sky every day around here."

"Like Fairy Freak said, we're in Dimmsdale." Mr. L explained. "If you had any brains, Koopa, you'd see exactly why we're here!"

Bowser sputtered for several seconds, unable to think of a response. "W-Well… maybe I didn't expect Dimmsdale to be where that portal took us, Mr. L!"

" And it was either this or stay trapped in Flipside."

"Excuse me!" Vicky yelled, angered as she stomped up to Bowser and Mr. L. "I asked before, and now I'm asking again: Who the heck are you two?"

"Do you seriously not know who I am?" Bowser questioned, turning to face Vicky.

"Uh, no." Vicky answered.

"Well, I'm Bowser, King of the Koopas!"

"Wow, a king! I'm impressed!" Vicky said, and then shook Bowser's hand for a few seconds. "Alright, now just who are you?" Vicky asked, turning to Mr. L.

"That's today's most popular question, isn't it? 'Who are you?'" Mr. L laughed, tauntingly. "Sure, I'll tell you. I'm… a minion of Count Bleck!"

"Wait, Count Bleck?" Timmy cut in. "Mario told me that Count Bleck was trying to destroy the universe, and you're working with him? Then that can only mean… Bowser, you're working for Count Bleck?" Timmy raised an eyebrow.

"What?! No!" Bowser yelled, shocked at Timmy's accusation.

"Just wait a second." Peridot interrupted. "Mr… L… do you give everyone you meet some strange nickname?"

"Sure do, Greenie!" Mr. L answered.

Peridot groaned. "At least you didn't call me "green lady"."

"Ooh, ooh, what's my nickname, Mr. L?" Mark excitedly asked.

"Mark!" Timmy chastised.


"Hey, can we hurry this up a little?" Crocker asked, pointing to his watch. "I have to take mother to her doctor appointment at around 6."

"And I don't even know why I'm here!" Dark Laser added.

"Yeah yeah, we'll talk about it on the way to the Vegan System." Timmy said as he started to push Dark Laser up the ship ramp.

"We are not done with this conversation!" Dark Laser argued. After Timmy pushed Dark Laser inside the ship, he looked behind him and saw Peridot excitedly run onto the ship, Crocker and Mark behind her.

"Lion, let's go!" Peridot yelled. Lion was still on the lawn, and had decided to sniff Bowser and Mr. L. Lion didn't react when sniffing Bowser, but when he sniffed Mr. L, his eyes widened, and ran away and onto the ship, hiding behind Peridot.

"Well?" Mr. L turned to Bowser. "Shouldn't the two of us be going as well?"

"Way ahead of you." Bowser said. He turned around and started to leave, until Mr. L grabbed his hand and started to drag him toward the ship.

" Wrong way."

Bowser then groaned, knowing that he was still largely too weak to resist Mr. L's very tight grip on his hand. Mr. L dragged Bowser onto and inside the ship.

"Alright, now we just need the final ingredient." Timmy smirked. He looked at Vicky, who was the last one still on the lawn.

"Oh no." Vicky realized. "Twerp, there is no way in a million years that I am ever going inside that spaceship!" She narrowed her eyes.

Luckily, Timmy came prepared, and held up a cash machine that was overflowing with money. He pressed a button on the cash machine, and even more money began spilling out. At this, Vicky became hypnotized by all of the money, and began sprinting toward it. Timmy then threw the cash machine inside of the Death Ball, where Vicky lunged at it. By now, everyone except Timmy and Crocker were inside the ship.

"Now hang on a second, I think I might've dropped something when that pink lion charged at me." Crocker said, checking his pockets.

"Ok, it's most likely not important so let's go ahead and move along!" Timmy quickly responded, pushing Crocker inside the ship. The ramp then retracted, followed by the door closing. A few seconds later, the Death Ball took off, soaring off of planet Earth and into space.

The Death Ball now had several passengers. Three of which knew the actual plan, three more who didn't know why they were even there, one who was already getting impatient, another one who was just simply sitting and waiting, and one last person who had figured out Timmy's trick.

"What's going on?" Vicky questioned, holding up the cash register. "There's fake money in this," She threw it aside. "And why did you drag us all here on an evil space pod?"

"Alright, listen." Timmy announced before anyone could go on a tangent. "Alien robots have kidnapped my friends and family, which means-"

"Alien robots?" Peridot interrupted.

Timmy sighed. "Yes, and they stole all of Mark's Fake-I-Fiers which allows them to change their appearance which means-"

"Oh, it all makes sense now!" Peridot interrupted. "Those Crystal Clods I had agreed to work with actually had been captured at some point by those robots, and then they used those fake-whatevers to disguise themselves as those clods!" She paused. "Wow, that was… a really well-thought out plan."

"Hey, something like that happened to me too!" Bowser added. "Flipside's like a ghost town now!"

"And the Eliminators tried to get me too, but Mark and I beat them!" Timmy added. "And if we all work together, I bet we can beat back the Darkness and Eliminators, get the second wand on the Blue Moon of Vegan, and save our friends and family!" Timmy and Mark smiled, hoping the rest of them would help.

"I don't know, Turner." Crocker said. "I'm not exactly willing to risk my life, despite how little years I may have left on it."

"And there are more important things to be worrying about right now!" Bowser added. "Like how the Void will destroy everything if we waste our time doing something else!"

"And Peridot was crying about some geoweapon that will break apart the Earth or something like that." Dark Laser also added.

"I wasn't crying!" Peridot argued. "I was just telling you in a way that looked like crying!"

"Alright!" Timmy yelled, getting everyone's attention. "Look, we can stop the Darkness, Void, and geoweapon if we just all work together!"

"Well, what's in it for us?" Vicky asked.

"Okay, Vicky, I'll give you twenty bucks," Timmy said, starting to go through everyone on the ship. "Peridot, I'll take you back to Homeworld, Crocker, you can see my fairies, Bowser, I'll help you stop the Void, Dark Laser, you can destroy me when this is all over, and…" He paused when he got to Mr. L. He had absolutely no idea what Mr. L would want.

"It doesn't matter to me." Mr. L said vaguely. "Just… whatever. I'll think of it later."

"Alrighty then." Timmy responded.

There was a pause. A long, awkward pause.

"Deal!" Everyone Timmy had promised things to said, now willing to help him.

"I'll set the coordinates for the Vegan System!" Dark Laser rushed over to a control panel and quickly began typing in coordinates. Once he was finished, he slammed his fist on a red button, setting the Death Ball on a course for the Blue Moon.

"Alright, Timmy doll, today's the day!"

Tootie sat in her room, which was covered with stickers, posters, drawings, and pretty much anything related to Timmy, including, strangely enough, a lock of his hair. Tootie was sitting on her bed, acting out a fake marriage between dolls of herself and Timmy.

"Yep, we're gonna get married!" Tootie, acting out the Timmy doll said. She grabbed the Tootie and Timmy dolls, got off her bed, and ran over to her dresser, where there was a miniature wedding setup. She placed the Tootie and Timmy dolls on opposite sides of the alter.

"And now, Timmy and Tootie will say their wedding vows!" Tootie said. "But wait, what's this?" She reached down to the floor, and grabbed another doll. A Vicky doll.

"Oh no, it's Vicky!" Tootie acted out the Timmy doll. "That's right!" Tootie then acted out the Vicky doll. "And I'm gonna destroy this wedding!" Tootie slammed the Vicky doll onto the dresser, scattering several of the miniature chairs.

"She's destroying our wedding!" Tootie yelled, acting out the doll of herself. She raised the Vicky doll in the air, and then slammed it down as hard as she could on the Timmy doll. "There!" Tootie acted out the Vicky doll. "Now Timmy's gone forever!"

A loud alarm suddenly went off. "Oh, right!" Tootie tossed the Vicky doll aside. "It's time for Vicky to take her cold medicine!" She ran out of her room and went downstairs. Her mom and dad had gone out shopping around 30 minutes ago, so they were gone.

"Oh Vicky!" Tootie called out. No response. "Oh right, Vicky's on her walk!" She walked into the kitchen to get a snack, only for her to see Vicky's cold pill bottle sitting on the table. "She forgot her pills! And it's time to take those pills! VICKY! WAIT!"

Tootie ran out of the house as fast as she could after grabbing the pill bottle and down the sidewalk, looking for Vicky. After several minutes, she finally found Vicky, but it was already far too late.

It was too late because she had only arrived right when Vicky was getting into the Death Ball, only about a second before it closed.

"Wait!" Tootie said, running over to the Death Ball. But by the time she got anywhere near the Death Ball, it had already taken off into space. "NO!"

Tootie went to her knees. "What am I gonna do now? Now both Timmy and Vicky are gone!" She started crying for several seconds, until she saw something several feet away. She stood up, walked over to it, and picked it up.

It was a rectangular object, by the name of "DNA Tracker XP 2000" and on the back of it was written "Fairy Godparents Exist!" There was also a small screen on the front, and a slot at the top.

"A DNA Tracker! I can use this to find where Timmy is!" She reached into her pocket and pulled out one of her "emergency Timmy hairs" and inserted it into the DNA Tracker. A moment later, it gave Tootie all of the information on Timmy, including where he was…

" Look, Timpani. The stars are beautiful, aren't they?"

"… There's a tradition in my village. We believe that wishes on stars come true."

" Oh, is that so? In that case we'd better get wishing, don't you think?"

" I don't need to wish anymore."

" Mmm?"

" I already got my wish. Now…I have everything I need right here."

" Timpani… Aren't you cold?"

" Not at all. I'm very warm… Can we stay like this? Just a little longer?"

"Tippi… Tippi… please, wake up…"

"Wha-" It was then that Tippi woke up, and the memories of the previous events started coming back to her. And… Mario! She was still resting on his cap, so she floated upwards. "Where are we…"

"We're in Abracatraz." Jorgen answered. "Fairy World's Maximum Security Prison."

Tippi got a good look around. There were several people she recognized from a few days ago, but many she didn't. She could only recognize Terrance, Tamara, Cosmo, Wanda, Poof, and Jorgen. But to her, the rest were strangers.

"What's the matter, Tippi?" Peach asked, concerned that Tippi wasn't saying anything else. "You seem really out of it…"

"Well, didn't you just hear something?" Tippi asked. She waited for a response, but everyone there made some kind of gesture that indicated to "no." "No? All right, then. It's just that… For a second, I thought I had remembered something very important…"

"Important? Like what?" Violet asked.

"I'm not too sure now…" Tippi responded.

"Aw well, that's a shame!" Cosmo suddenly said, interrupting the moment. "But at least you have us!" Several of them glared at Cosmo in response. "What?"

"Just how many more people are going to get thrown in this cell?" Amethyst asked, changing the topic. "There's already, like twenty of us here already, and it's starting to get pretty crowded in here."

"And why would they put all of us in one cell?" Trixie added. "If I were a part of some robot alien race, I would put us all in separate cells!"

"Don't give them ideas!" AJ yelled at her.

"Yeah, do you want them to separate us?" Chester added.

"No!" Trixie yelled. "I was just saying that if-"

"Oh, if, if, if!" Chester mocked. "Well what if I wasn't stuck in this cell with you and was at home preparing for summer vacation?"

"Hey, you're not the only one who doesn't want to be here!" Junior said, now getting into the argument.

"None of us want to be here!" AJ pointed out.

Steven ran over. "Guys, stop fighting! If we're all fighting, then we can't work together to find out how to get out of here!"

"Sorry, but I don't even know who half the people here even are." Trixie said. "Including you."

"Let's just try to set everything straight, so that everyone knows who everyone is." Tamara suggested. "So, I'm Tamara, and he's Terrance," She gestured to her husband.

"We already knew that." Chester said.

"I didn't!" Steven raised his hand. "Ooh, I'll go next. So, hi, I'm Steven, and I'm a half-gem on my mom's side," Steven lifted up his jacket and shirt to show off the pink gem his mom, Rose Quartz passed down to him. "And my mom pretty much started this alien war, I think? Something along those lines." Steven looked at Junior. "Alright, now you go next."

"Well, I'm-"

"This isn't going to get us anywhere." Pearl interrupted. "We should be thinking of a plan to get out of here!"

"It's kinda hard to when all of our weapons are disabled, you know." Amethyst pointed out.

"I know that!" Pearl responded.

Wanda floated over to Terrance and Tamara. "Aren't you at least a little surprised that Timmy has had Fairy Godparents this whole time?" Wanda asked.

"Well, we would be…" Tamara started. "But we… sort of figured that out ourselves."

"But we do have some questions." Terrance added. "Like, can you grant Timmy's every wish?"

"Well, not every wish. There are rules." Wanda answered.

"Could he have wished me a clean house whenever he saw I was tired from domestic overload?" Tamara asked.

"Sure, that's an easy one!" Wanda answered. Tamara glared in response.

Chester then asked a question. "Could he have wished me up a big house when my trailer got destroyed by that twister?"

"Heck, he could've just wished away the twister!" Cosmo pointed out.

"Well, could he wish all my siblings weren't sick?" Junior asked.

"If it's not in Da Rules, then any child with a fairy godparent can wish for it!" Jorgen yelled. "There, now can we move on?"

"Hang on a sec." Amethyst said. "Hey Steven, maybe you should just get Timmy to "wish" that Peridot would be on our side, right?" Amethyst then snickered at her own joke.

"Amethyst, it's not funny!" Steven said. "I did so much with Peridot, I sang a song with her, I showed her what rain was, I even stuck up for her!"

"Wow," Violet said. "You must have given her a lot of your trust."

"I did! And it blew up in my face." Steven sighed. "The Crystal Gems have been protecting Earth for thousands of years, and Peridot could've destroyed all of that! A whole earth, why did I think I could change her mind!"

"I've got an idea!" Cosmo said. "Maybe if you can't change how someone is from the outside, then maybe you could shrink down really small and then crawl inside-"

"No no no, I don't want to tell her what to do." Steven responded. "She should just… know, shouldn't she?"

"It's 'cause you believe in everyone, Steven." Garnet explained. "Like your mother, you seem to have a little more patience than the rest of us. But the truth is, not everyone deserves that patience."

"I know exactly one person that doesn't." Peach said, growling a little at that last part.

"Well who is it?" AJ asked.

Peach was about to answer, until she heard a cough from behind her. She turned around, and saw that… Mario was finally waking up. "Mario!" Peach quickly ran over to him.

"Is he alright?" Tippi asked.

Mario's eyes slowly opened. "What… urgh…" He blinked. Then, his eyes shot open and he tried to stand up, only to fall back down. "Ow… Everything hurts…"

"Okay, I'll admit I didn't notice it before, but what happened to your arm?" Tamara asked, just now looking at Mario's right arm, which was wrapped in a yellow gauze, but stained with blood.

"Yeah, that looks really, really bad." Amethyst added, cringing a little. "How long have you had that?"

"Around 24 hours." Mario answered. "Also, this happened because… um… I was stabbed… one of Count Bleck's minions. He was… Mr. L."

"If we could get out of this cell," Garnet began. "Then we could get to Rose's Fountain and heal your arm."

"Maybe we don't have to go back to the fountain!" Steven said. "Maybe I can try healing him with my healing spit!"

"Remember, Steven, that none of your Gem powers work here!" Jorgen reminded.

"Well, I'm half human, and my spit is organic, so maybe this will work!" Steven explained. He walked toward Mario. "Uh, Mario, would it be alright if I-"

"Please, I'm willing to do anything to get my arm back to normal at this rate." Mario accepted. Steven nodded, and then licked the palm of his hand. A moment later, he carefully put it down on Mario's injured arm. Several seconds passed. And…

Nothing happened.

"No, why does it still not work!" Steven yelled, upset.

"Well, it was a good try…" Tippi said, trying to cheer Steven up.

"No, you don't understand!" Steven stood up. "My healing spit hasn't worked for like almost a year! My healing spit only worked for a couple weeks before it stopped working again!"

"Hey, don't worry about it too much." Mario said. "I'll just… find another way to heal it."

"Ooh, I know! How about a magic muffin?" Cosmo blurted.

"A magic what?" Chester asked.

"I'll explain." Jorgen said. He cleared his throat. "So, once a child has managed to keep his Fairy or Fairies a secret from everyone for a year, he or she is awarded with a magic muffin, and when you eat it, it allows you to have one rule-free wish."

"That… sounds incredibly dangerous." Violet pointed out.

"Oh, it is dangerous!" Cosmo said. "Cause when Timmy got his magic muffin, he let a monkey get to it and turned the entire world into a world ruled by apes and then Crocker got the muffin and wished himself ruler of the world and wow I say this makes Timmy look really irresponsible!" Cosmo explained quickly without any breaks.

"Well, now I say that we get Timmy!" Terrance stood up. A second later, Tamara, Chester, AJ, and Trixie stood up. The five of them charged at the cell bars, only to fall down when they hit the cell bars.

"All of you, calm down!" Wanda yelled. "Now, I know all of you are now probably thinking that Timmy is selfish…"

"Which he is," Cosmo finished. Wanda glared and then pushed him away

"But what you don't know is that he's risked his life to save all of you!" Wanda continued. "And now he's trying to save you from the Darkness!"

"What about the Void, that's pretty important too…" Tippi reminded.

"Well, I should still have the Pure Heart we collected," Mario began, fishing through his pockets. "Once we get out of here and back to Flipside, we can-" He suddenly stopped. "Where is it? I know I just had it right before we were brought here!"

"You know what's strange?" Terrance asked. "Right before my wife and I were taken here, we had Timmy's permanent records and a camera I set up, but now both of them are gone!"

Just then, what seemed to be an earthquake shook Abracatraz for several seconds, shaking up everyone.

"Was that an earthquake?" Amethyst asked. "Wait, can Fairy World even have earthquakes?"

"It only means that the Void continues to grow larger." Merlon explained. "I imagine that some worlds have already started to decay…"

"Wait a second." Pearl interrupted. "Some worlds… you just mean planets, right?"

"No no no, I mean the other dimensions that Mario and his friends have been traveling to in order to obtain the Pure Hearts." Merlon said.

"Then that means that stopping the Void should be our first priority." Garnet said, frowning a little.

"But what about the Cluster?" Steven asked. "The drill was destroyed, and we might not have enough time to build a new one?"

"Well what about the Darkness?" Wanda questioned. "That thing's gonna destroy the entire universe!"

"Merlon…" Tippi began. "Does the Light Prognosticus not say anything about how much time we have?"

"The Light Prognosticus was only written to counteract the dark one…" Merlon explained. "As such, it's not truly prophetic, so it's hard to say how long we really have… And yet…I feel confident in saying that we do not have much time at all."

"How could you be confident in saying something like that?" AJ questioned.

"Well, maybe it's better that we have the blunt truth!" Chester argued. "Do you want him to lie?"

As Chester and AJ got into their own argument, almost everyone else started getting into their own little conversations, obviously getting sidetracked. At this, Steven sighed and slumped down on the wall. Several seconds later, Junior walked up and sat down next to him.

"Are you… alright, Steven?" Junior asked.

"No, I'm not." Steven said with a sigh. "All this Void and Darkness stuff suddenly gets dumped on me and the Gems, and now it feels like we're never gonna out of here, and what if the Eliminators got to Connie or my dad, or what if they targeted Beach City?"

"Well… they targeted Flipside, and captured everyone there…" Junior responded. "Well, when they captured us, they left my dad behind, and now I'm not sure how long it'll be until I get to see him again."

"If anyone tried to steal my dad, I'm not sure what I'd do." Steven said. "Also, that's exactly what happened at the barn! All of the Crystal Gems and me were captured except Peridot, and the last thing she did before I was gone was to try and get that stupid Diamond Communicator from the Eliminators?"

"Uh, what's a Diamond Communicator?" Junior asked.

"It's a small, diamond shaped device that Peridot said can contact Yellow Diamond." Steven explained. "At least she didn't manage to contact Yellow Diamond, but… I'm not sure what could've happened if she did."

"I don't think anything bad would've happened." Mario said, trying to scoot over to them. "Besides, how powerful could this 'Yellow Diamond' really be?"

"Well, what about all those forced fusion experiments?" Steven asked. "All those gems, broken and forced with others… it's horrifying."

"…Wait." Junior said. He reached into his hammerspace, and pulled something out. "You mean… like this one?" It was the remains "monster" Junior and Timmy fought in the sewers several days ago… Junior didn't like recalling that memory.

Garnet quickly walked over to them at seeing the poofed forced fusion. "Junior, tell me where you got this."

"Well, I found it in the sewers, and Timmy and I defeated it." Junior explained.

"What?" Pearl questioned, now listening in. "How did one of… those manage to get into the sewers of all places?"

"Um…" Junior was unsure how to explain the next part. "Well, later, Timmy and I were captured by MERF, and they had a bunch of those… things locked in cages."

Garnet growled. "That's it. When we get out of here, we are going to go over there ourselves and free those fusions."

"Garnet, I care about rescuing those fusions as much as you do, but we need to focus on everything else first!" Pearl reminded.

"Well…" Steven began. "If we're… focusing on everything else, weren't you and Garnet gonna tell me about what actually happened?"

"What?" Pearl raised an eyebrow.

"The thing you said earlier, about how we'll 'save that story for later'!" Steven yelled. "What was that story? The one about the Darkness or something?"

"Yeah, earlier you were being vague about that." Jorgen pointed out. "And I really think we need to hear it, since what I heard could be highly inaccurate!"

"Please Pearl, please Garnet, this could be important!" Steven said, making himself look sad.

Pearl glanced around, almost as if she was afraid to tell. And then, she sighed. "Alright."

By now, everyone's attention was on Pearl and Garnet.

Pearl cleared her throat.

"Steven… and everyone else… this is the story of what happened when thousands of years ago, the Crystal Gems visited Fairy World."

Chapter Text

Around 6,000 years ago: The Story Of Fairies And Gems

The Crystal Gems of thousands of years ago only consisted of Rose Quartz, Pearl, and Garnet. Though there were only 3 of them, an incredibly small number, it didn't deter them from pursuing their current goal.

Finding all of the corrupted Gems, and bubbling them.

They were only a couple of weeks into their quest, and so far, they had gotten to at least a dozen of them. But despite that over a dozen seemed like many, in reality, it was quite a small number compared to however many there could actually be, which was quite high.

Right now, the three Gems were currently hunting down a corrupted Gem that had eluded them for around an hour. The corrupted Gem was slightly bigger than Rose, and had many limbs, all of them used to run away from the Crystal Gems.

Rose, Garnet, and Pearl hid behind a large rock, watching the corrupted Gem aimlessly move around, not knowing at all where it was going as it tripped over a huge rock, but continued running afterward.

"Rose, how are we ever going to poof that one?" Pearl whispered, making sure the corrupted Gem couldn't hear her and run away. "It keeps running, and whenever we do get close to it, it kicks all of us with its limbs!"

"Don't worry, Pearl." Rose whispered back. "I'm positive that we'll get this one, just like every other one."

"Yes, but how, Rose?" Pearl asked, getting a bit louder.

"Wait." Rose unexpectedly said, stopping Pearl. "Watch." She pointed at the corrupted Gem.

The corrupted Gem had decided to stop aimlessly running, for one reason only. It saw a small batch of flowers in the grass. After sniffing them, it started dancing around them.

"It likes flowers." Garnet deadpanned.

"It's starting to like the Earth!" Rose cheered, stars in her eyes. "Maybe this one will have a chance!" She paused and sighed. "But for now, all we can do is bubble it. Gems, weapons!"

Rose summoned her shield, Pearl summoned her spear, and finally, Garnet summoned her gauntlets.

"Let's move!" Rose commanded. A second later, while the corrupted Gem was still distracted by the flowers, Rose, Garnet, and Pearl quickly bounded upon it, and using their combined strength, managed to quickly poof it, letting the remaining Jade gem fall to the ground. Rose then picked up the lone Gem, bubbled it, and then Pearl put it in her Gem for the time being.

"Well, I have to say that was surprisingly easy." Pearl commented.

For around another half-hour, walking around was quite uneventful. It was uneventful, that is until they came across something that even they could describe as extraordinary. Several yards ahead of them was what appeared to be a large, magical, rainbow bridge.

The bridge jutted out from the ground, and then went on a steep incline into the sky, where from the Gems were at, couldn't see the destination.

"What… is this thing?" Pearl asked, upon the three of them getting closer. "Rose, do you know what this?"

"No, I don't…" Rose responded. "Let's check it out!"

"Maybe some Crystal Gems might've escaped to whatever is on the other side of that bridge." Garnet suggested.

"Yeah, maybe Bismuth is here!" Pearl realized.