BECOME HER SERVANT
Chapter Six: 3 Days of Unhappiness


by Victar (vctr113062@aol.com)
http://www.victarfanfics.com


GPS LOG: Pit of 100 Trials, level 50
Year 20XX, Day ?2
4:23 p.m.

[click]

LUIGI: [fatigued breathing] H-hello again, my secret diary. We're still after the last box, but it's... it's time to take a break... we're barely holding up. The last box is-

[gulp]

[whispered] The last box is at the bottom of the Pit of 100 Trials!

The Pit of 100 Trials - it's a nightmare dungeon underneath Rogueport, filled with level after level of wicked monsters! Every time we take a warp pipe deeper, we see dirty, vicious creatures droning "Serve the Queen," and the pipe to the next level won't appear until we knock them all out!

We've been fighting battle after battle after battle...

We're rationing the sack of items we got from the Albaphoenix. The magic food helps us feel better when we get hurt, but we're running low and only halfway to the bottom of the Pit!

I'm trying to get used to fighting as a team with Daisy. I think we're improving, but-

But...

I can't stop thinking about Mario. Mario and me always clicked as a team, whether we were fighting for our lives in the Beanbean Kingdom or having fun in tennis doubles. It was like we could read each other's minds - we couldn't really, of course, although I think I caught Mario reading my diary once, back when I kept a written one - but we knew each other that well.

While Daisy...

Daisy is still learning how to fight, and I'm terrible at explaining. She doesn't get my demonstrations very well, she needs things spelled out in words. Then when she has an idea she tries to describe it to me but it makes no sense, I need her to show me, and she's not good at demonstrating. She gets confused, I get confused, and our confusion nearly gets us killed.

I don't think we make a very good team.

I don't think we make a very bad team, either. Daisy tries as hard as she can, I know she does, and I'm trying too. We're just so... so different, we don't think or talk or react the same way at all. We have trouble matching our timing, and it's making all these battles tough. Mario and me could practically read each other's minds, but I don't think Daisy and me would know what each other is thinking if we yelled it from two feet away.

It's a good thing I'm wearing my extra-heavy-duty Beanstar pants from the Beanbean Kingdom. I think they have a magic zip to them that saved our lives a couple times.

Once we get the last box, I hope we can find Mario and break the spell on him quickly. We need him to fight the Shadow Queen with us. I don't think Daisy and me can beat her on our own, I really don't.



GPS LOG: Pit of 100 Trials, level 80
Year 20XX, Day ?3
8:44 p.m.

[click]

CHARLIETON: [background] Serve the Queen... serve the Queen...

PRINCESS DAISY: [background] Please tell me the prices on your Super Mushrooms are a joke. I don't charge that much for tickets to a royal banquet.

C: Serve the Queen...

LUIGI: [gasping]

Owwwiee...

H-hi again, my secret diary. Taking... another break...

Every ten floors of the Pit... well, it looks safe enough to rest. There are no monsters here. Only Charlieton.

Poor Charlieton...

I used to see him selling everything imaginable in Rogueport's main square. Mario would buy all sorts of rare stuff from him. I could never afford to buy anything, but Charlieton was a friendly fellow, friendly by Rogueport standards anyway. He was always happy to chat.

He's not talking very much now.

C: [background] Serve the Queen...

D: [background] How much for just two Super Mushrooms, then?

L: Charlieton doesn't look too good. He used to be a big, heavy guy. Reminded me of a walrus. Now he's thinner. Pale. Tired. Sickly.

Do the Queen's zombies have to eat?

I think they do, but it's like they can hardly feed themselves, even if food is right in front of them. Is Charlieton forgetting to eat his own mushrooms?

With darkness covering the sky and turning plants brown, it must be impossible to farm more food. I think that's why the Queen's servants looted all the stores. But when that food runs out...

We have to stop the Queen soon. We have to! I-I don't want to think about what will happen if things stay like this much longer-!

Daisy and me are out of food, too. Everything the Albaphoenix gave us is gone, used up to keep us alive while we fought harder and harder battles. Daisy is trying to make a deal with Charlieton for more magic healing food, but even a zombified Charlieton seems pretty stubborn about his prices.

C: Serve the Quee-

[WHACK]

C: UGH-!

[thud]

D: Here, Luigi. Carry as many Super Mushrooms as you can.

L: D-did you just hit him over the head with your hammer?

D: Like a Whacka Mole.

L: But - but - but-

D: We need the supplies, and he needs us to succeed. Look at him. He won't survive much longer under the Queen's spell.

L: -isn't this stealing?

D: How many times have you and Mario stomped on Koopas and Goombas and taken their coins? Isn't that stealing?

L: But they were fighting for King Bowser-

D: And Charlieton serves the Shadow Queen. Are you going to help me loot this big slob or not?

L: Promise me you'll pay him back after all this is over.

D: Pay back what, thousands of gold coins? What we're taking isn't worth a tenth of that-

L: Then pay him back a fair price. But promise me you'll pay him back. We're going to put everything the way it was, all the people and all the things too. Promise me.

D: All right. Since it's important to you, I promise.

[pause]

D: Luigi... you and Mario came to our rescue so many times...

...were you ever paid?

Either of you?

At all?

L: You mean, with money? We get to keep what we collect for ourselves. Most of it goes to bills and groceries.

D: That's it?

L: Well, sometimes grateful Toads cook for us. That's always nice, it lets me take a day off from kitchen duty. What does this have to do with anything?

D: Did you ask Peach for a reward, the last time either of you rescued her? Now that I think about it, I don't believe Mario ever asked me for anything... and he fought his way past Tatanga's legions to save me...

L: Mario didn't help you because he wanted money. Who do you think he is? You're talking like some stranger who doesn't know him from Wario.

D: But Peach and I live in luxury, and you... um... don't?

L: [growing irritated] What does any of this have to do with rescuing my brother and saving the world?

D: Umm...

L: [harsher] You've been grilling me all about Mario lately - his age, his old girlfriend, and now you're worrying about the money he makes - are you in love with him or something?

D: [shocked] Wh-what?

L: I thought you got over your crush on him years ago!

D: [quieter] I... yes. Yes, I did.

L: Then why are you bringing up these crazy questions!?

D: [evenly] So, you consider your "immutable station in life" to be "unquestionable"?

L: I don't know what you're thinking, but you better not be quoting that bird again! It was flat-out wrong when it said you "lost your heart", and it's flat-out wrong about how to save the world!

Let's get going. We have to hurry up and rescue my brother.

D: [muttered] What I'm thinking? What in the name of pidgitkind are you thinking?



GPS LOG: Pit of 100 Trials, level 99
Year 20XX, Day ?4
11:23 p.m.

[click]

PRINCESS DAISY: [quiet background weeping]

LUIGI: [hushed] Oh, secret diary... we... we're...

[labored breathing]

...almost there... almost to the bottom of the Pit of 100 Trials-!

These last few levels were so hard... it wasn't just the drooling monsters with powerful spells and deadly spikes and blood-sucking fangs. Those terrify me, but I'm used to being frightened...

There are Amazy Dayzees down here. I never guessed there would be more flower people in this deep, dank, chilly pit.

Diary, I told you before how Daisy reacts when she sees flower people trapped as slaves to the Queen. It's getting worse. The Daisy I used to know was so bright and cheerful! I hardly ever saw her cry over anything, she might pout a bit if she lost a game but this...

[pause]

D: [background] ...I failed my kingdom... I failed my people...

L: [softer] This isn't the Princess Daisy I know. What happened to my sunny, happy best friend? I want her back. I don't know this person.

I don't...

I've tried to help her when she gets like this, but... oh, Mario was always so good at making people smile. Better than me, anyway. I don't feel like smiling myself, I feel like running or hiding...

We have to break the spell on Mario. We need him back. We have to-

D: [background] Lu... Luigi? Are you talking into your recorder again?

L: Uhh - were you listening?

D: Not really.

L: Feeling better?

D: Not really...

L: Me neither.

[Daisy sniffles, sighs]

D: We don't know what's on the final floor of the Pit. Are you ready for a fight?

L: I guess.

D: Okay. Let's warp down.

L: You sure?

D: Yes.

L: Okey-dokey.

[warping noise]