BECOME HER SERVANT
Chapter Eight: The Thousand-Year Showdown


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


GPS LOG: Underground Rogueport, West Side
Year 20XX, Day ?4
11:52 p.m.

[warping noise]

LUIGI: Daisy! Daisy!

PRINCESS DAISY: [violent coughing and choking]

L: P-please be okay-! Please!

D: Uggh... [hacking]

ALBAPHOENIX: It would seem the little yellow chick has breathed in deadly poison. Hm, did Bonetail give you a rough time?

L: Hu-huh? You-! What are you doing here? And if you knew about that monster dragon skeleton, why didn't you warn us!?

A: That's hardly important now, is it?

What matters is that the yellow chick needs an antidote to the dragon breath as soon as possible. She will not RESET if she dies here.

L: Wh-where can we get an antidote?

A: I will fly you both to a safe haven. Come along, now.

D: [coughing] Nngh-no, Luigi, d-don't trust it-!

[violent gagging]

L: You awful bird, promise me you'll cure her! Promise me!

A: You're hardly in any position to make demands. Be a good little "hero" and let me pick you up in my claws, hm?

L: Promise me now or I'll hammer your claws!

A: Very well. Allow me to carry you, and I give you my word I'll cure her. I suppose two "heroes" are better than one, anyway.

D: [gasping] Luigi, don't-!

L: Okey-dokey, let's go. No tricks!

A: You wound me.

[heavy flapping]

L: Aaah-! Where are we going-?

D: [still coughing] Sh-shadow - Queen - palace...

A: I see you've figured it out, little chick. Let's take the shortcut, shall we? I believe King Bowser left a rather large hole in the roof, during his short-lived visit. It should lead more or less to our destination.

L: Wh-what?

[swooping]

L: YAAAAAH!



GPS LOG: Palace of Shadow, Shadow Queen's Crypt
Year 20XX, Day ?4
11:59 p.m.

[swooping, flapping]

[double thud]

L: Ugh-!

D: Ohhh... [choking]

A: There. That wasn't so bad, was it?

L: Y-you said you'd cure Daisy! You promised!

A: So I did. One moment.

[Albaphoenix inhales deeply]

L: Wh-what are you-

[FWOOOSH]

L: DAISY!

A: Oh, be still. You're yelling loud enough to wake the undead.

D: Ugggh... huh?

L: D-Daisy? Th-that fire... it didn't hurt you?

D: I... I'm okay... ohhh...

A: See? I keep my promises. She's all better now.

L: But if - if you could do that at any time, wh-why did you take us to this weird room full of creepy black candles-

D: [coldly] The Shadow Queen's crypt.

A: I think the black candles are rather elegant, personally. They burn with the loveliest black flames.

D: He brought us here because he serves the Shadow Queen, too.

L: WHAAAT!?

A: Did I not mention that? My bad.

D: Why did you do it, bird? Why did you sell out to that demon!?

A: It was either submit or be turned to stone. I don't think I'd look good as a rock.

L: B-b-but why!?

A: After that louse Toadsworth betrayed Her Majesty, she knew that she couldn't personally trick "heroes" into bringing her the boxes.

D: Don't insult Toadsworth! He was the finest Toad I knew! He was better than you in every way!

A: Her Highness needed an intermediary to bestow her quest. One who appeared, shall we say, a little more trustworthy?

L: I never trusted you!

A: No? Alas for that. I never lied to you, not once. Couldn't even if I wanted to.

You do remember all the wisdom I imparted? I told you the only way to RESET this world. You, little chick - haven't you tested the hypotheses, one by one? Haven't you noticed that every single thing I said was true?

D: [harshly] You didn't just send us that image of your mountaintop. You've been using your bonfire-visions to spy on us throughout our quest. Waiting for the right time to ambush us and bring us here.

A: Aren't you even going to say "Thank you, magical Albaphoenix, I'm so happy you cleansed me of that dreadful poison?"

D: No.

A: How sharper than a Cobrat's tooth is a thankless chick.

But enough of this; I believe our arrival has attracted royal attention. May I present Her Highness, Vanquisher of Heroes, Bringer of Paradise, Our Dark Lady of Love and Mercy... The Shadow Queen!

[door creak]

SHADOW QUEEN: Greetings, heroes. You have served me well.

D: Peach-! My cousin...

L: Wh-where's Mario? What has she done with my brother?

SQ: If you swear fealty to me, and present the four boxes that you have collected, then I will reward you with a place in my Paradise.

D: Peach! Peach, it's me, Daisy-! We're going to get that demon out of you, but we need your help! Wake up! Wake up!

L: Mario? Marioooo! Where are you?

SQ: Are you listening to me?

D: Luigi, are you ready to take her on?

L: [gulp]

D: I know it's Peach, but don't - don't hold back - we can't!

L: If only Mario were here-!

SQ: I expected you to be stubborn, but not rude. No matter. My strongest servant shall teach you proper etiquette.

D: We're not afraid of your pet bird!

L: [mumbled] I'm afraid of your pet bird.

A: What am I, a budgie?

SQ: My splendid Albaphoenix is only the second strongest of my servants. No, it is time for a... what do mortals call it? "Family reunion."

Come here, my faithful slave.


[shuffling footsteps]

L: M-... MARIO!

D: No, Luigi-! He's still under the Queen's spell!

MARIO: [vacantly] Serve... serve-a the Queen...

SQ: My loyal Mario, do punish these two for their insolence toward your Queen.

M: Yes-a ma'am...

L: Bro...

D: I'll handle Mario. You keep an eye on the Albaphoenix!

L: Daisy, no! Don't-!

D: YAAH!

M: HAH!

[heavy slam]

D: UGH-!

[thud]

L: No, Daisy, you can't take him on by yourself, he's too powerful! He's Mario!

D: [stunned] Oooogh... so many pretty Crystal Stars...

M: HEE-YAAH!

L: Stop it, Bro!

[SHWHAACK]

M: Uhgk-!

L: Don't make me hammer you again! Mama taught you never to hit no girls!

M: S-serve-a the Queen...

L: I'm gonna break that spell on you no matter what it takes! HI-YAAAH!

M: YAAAH!

D: [still groggy] H-heart-

[double slam]

D: -shield!

[crash]

L: Ugggh... g-gotta do that before I'm hit Daisy...

D: S-sorry...

M: HEE-YAAH!

L: AAAAAH!

D: HEART SHIELD!

[crashing, slamming]

A: My Queen, are you quite sure this is fair? Two against one, and all.

SQ: Do you doubt the might of my strongest servant?

A: Well I wouldn't say that...

L: AAAH-!

M: YARRGH!

L: Bro, wake up already! What's it gonna take to-?

D: P-pain...

L: Hang in there, Daisy!

D: Nn-no, I mean - pain - [wheezing]

M: Serve-a the Queen...

L: Oh yeah, I remember now! Daisy, we gotta- [rushed whispering]

SQ: Very well, my splendid Albaphoenix. You may be Mario's partner.

[flapping]

A: My goodness red robin, haven't you finished them off yet? Never fear, your backup is here. Would you like a primer on your new partner's abilities?

M: Serve-a the Queen!

L: YEERAAAGH!

D: YAAAH!

A: Or perhaps some information on your enemies?

Let's start with Princess Daisy, hm? Max HP 25, Attack 3, Defense 0. Ex-damsel in distress turned fiercely competitive tomboy, ruler of the former Sarasaland, and the green fledgeling's valiant best friend - I suppose her true feelings are a secret? Usually cheerful and exuberant, she's been having a nervous breakdown since her kingdom fell to ruin. Seems to be the weaker by far, but she can create shields that actually absorb damage! You really ought to knock her out first.

M: HEE-YAAH!

D: HEART SHIE- ugh!

L: Daisy-!

A: That's more like it.

D: I'm not - done yet-!

A: And now for your nervous little brother and career "hero", Luigi. Max HP 50, Attack 6, Defense 1. Hm, the green fledgeling has been working out, hasn't he? I guess his stint as Princess Eclair's Champion whipped him into shape. His Badges of Power include Hammer Throw and Hammerman, so his mallet packs a wallop, but at least he won't stomp on your head. Oh, and the Beanstar Pants he's wearing? They drastically increase his speed, that's why he often makes the first move. I don't suppose you thought to wear any similar trousers today? Well, if you keep jumping on him, I'm sure he'll go down soon enough.

M: YAAAH!

D: HEART SHIELD!

L: Gotcha!

M: [choking]

A: Did I neglect to mention that the green fledgeling was sneaking up behind you? My bad. Well, I hear you've made quite a name for yourself in the Glitz Pit lately. Surely you can escape a simple headlock?

SQ: Albaphoenix, did I not send you to assist Mario?

A: My Queen, I fear I can't attack the green fledgeling without risking injury my fellow servant Mario. You know that's forbidden. Unless you could grant me a reprieve on that law? Just this once?

L: Mario, if this doesn't wake you up, nothing will-!

A: Please?

L: THUNDERRR!

[loud electric crackle]

M: AAAAAAAAH!

A: Oh, dear. Did I not mention the green fledgeling can do that? My bad.

SQ: Very well, my splendid Albaphoenix. I empower you to waive the law as you deem necessary.

D: [gasping, frazzled] Not so fast, bird!

A: [disdainful] Do yourself a favor and stay down, little chick.

[rustle, jump]

A: AWWK-!

D: I'll wring your Ostro neck!

[heavy flapping]

L: M-Mario! Open your eyes, please-! [sniffle] We need your help, bad!

M: Uhhhh...

...'uigi...? Wha...

L: Mario!

A: SCRAWWWW!

D: You treacherous traitor Tweeter!

[frantic flapping]

M: I... I-a remember... you... Luigi? Daisy...?

SQ: What is this?

M: Peach...

L: Mario! We came all this way to save you! You gotta fight with us now! We gotta stop the Shadow Queen and turn Peach back to normal!

D: I'll pluck you bald like a Birdo!

A: AAWWWWWK!

[swooping, heavy flapping]

L: Mario, GET DOWN!

M: Aaaah-!

[SLAM]

D: AAAH-ugh!

[thud]

A: [wheezing] Th-that will be quite enough.

L: Daisy-! Mario, quick, we gotta help her!

SQ: What are you doing?

M: Nnggh-!

L: Mario?

M: I - I must protect-a the Queen-

L: No, Mario, no! We broke the spell on you!

SQ: Is that what you think?

M: Luigi - g-go to Daisy - I-a c-can't-

[Albaphoenix inhales deeply]

L: DAISY!

D: [groggy] Ohhh...

L: NO!

[Luigi sprints]

D: H-heart - shie-

[FWOOOSH]

M: AAAAAAAAAAAAAH-!

L: Wha- Mario? Mario-!

D: [shocked gasp] It wasn't aiming at us - it was aiming at Mario!

L: NOOOOO! MARIO!

SHADOW QUEEN?: No... Mario...

[Luigi sprints]

M: [groaning]

A: Aren't you dead yet, red robin? My bad.

SQ?: Oh no - all because of me - Luigi, please help Mario!

L: M-Mario, quick, suh-swallow this, it will help you-

M: Ugggh...

D: You Fryguy with feathers - you used us - you wanted to kill Mario all along!

A: And you should help me! I've seen you squall like the newly hatched over your precious Sarasaland; this is the only way to bring it back!

D: But...

[Albaphoenix inhales deeply]

L: [gulp] Uh-oh.

SQ?: Rrrgh - no, please don't hurt Mario! - not this again-!

L: Hang on to me, Mario!

[rustle, jump]

[FWOOOSH]

A: Don't you dare keep him alive!

M: Uggh...

D: [torn] My kingdom... my people... what if it's all true? Everything else was true-! What if the only way to restore Sarasaland is to - to-

L: Daisy, STOP TALKING CRAZY TALK!

A: DIE LIKE THE WORMS YOU ARE!

[swooping, CRASH]

L: UGGH-!

M: Ohh...

SQ?: Stop it - stop crying, you flawed vessel, you're making me angry! - Oh Daisy, please help them! Please!

D: Peach... my kingdom... my people...

A: Burn with your brother, you spineless green crawler!

[deep, prolonged inhale]

L: Ooog... oh, no-!

[FWOOOOOOOOOSH]

D: [simultaneous] HEART SHIELD!

A: SCREAAAAAAAW NOOOOO! YOU CANNOT PROTECT THEM!

D: I...

...I can't let you hurt Luigi. I can't let you destroy his only brother.

Not even to restore my kingdom.

Not even to save the world.

A: THAT GREEN COWARD WILL NEVER LOVE YOU, YOU BROKEN-HEARTED FOOL!

L: Wha... huh?

D: [pained] You think I don't know that?

SQ?: Love...

L: D-Daisy - wh-what-? You-?

D: [softly] I didn't have to ask you anything to know that part was true. I've seen you swoon for Princess Eclair; you've never felt that way about me.

L: Daisy...

A: Yes, very melodramatic, let's skip to the part where ALL OF YOU DIE NOW!

[swooping]

D: HEART SHIELD!

[CRASH, wingbeats slamming]

D: Nnngh- I can't keep this up - get Mario out of the way-!

L: But Daisy-!

[heavier wingbeats slamming]

[hurricane whooshing]

A: I WILL VAPORIZE THAT SHIELD IF IT'S THE LAST THING I DO!

[wingbeats increase]

[deep, prolonged inhale]

D: You can't carry two people! Go!

L: No, Daisy, we're a team! Remember?

[FWOOOOOOOOOSH]

SQ?: Mario... Luigi... Daisy... all my friends... Submerge your consciousness now or I'll finish them off myself!

[fwooshing continues]

[hurricane intensifies]

L: Oh, no, get dow-

D: AAAH-!

[whirlwind whooshing]

[triple SLAM, triple thud]

[hurricane subsides]

D: Errrg.

M: Ugggh...

L: Ohhh, I don't wanna die here. I really don't.

A: Too bad for you.

[Albaphoenix inhales deeply]

A: AAWWWWWWWWWK!

SQ: My splendid Albaphoenix... you have indeed completed the last thing you shall ever do.

L: D-Daisy-! Wake up! I-I've got one Super Mushroom left, hurry, eat it!

D: Ohh...

SQ: Why did you trick me, my precious pet? Why did you strive to slay my loyal servant Mario?

A: AWK! AAAAWWWK!

SQ: Was it jealousy, perchance?

A: I? J-jealous of that pudgy red robin? AWWWWWWK!

[lightning crashing]

SQ: You will tell me, or suffer torments unspeakable.

A: B-because I - I hate you! I hate you! I HATE YOU!

SQ: Very well. Let us see if you are worthy of ornamenting my statuary.

A: SCREAAAAAAAAAAAAW-!

[rumbling, crackling noise]

SQ: Muh huh huh... no, this will not do. You do not look good as a rock.

[electric BOOM]

[stone crumbling, gravel scattering]

[silence]

L: [whimpering]

D: [shaken] That was just cruel.

SQ: There is no place in Paradise for those who do not love me.

D: You're not making the world into Paradise! You're making it into a nightmare!

L: No one loves you! You're a demon!

SQ: It would seem there is no place in Paradise for the two of you, either. Pity.

D: [breathing hard] This is it. We can do this.

L: [gulp]

[shuffling steps]

L: M-Mario? No-! Get out of the way!

M: Luigi, I... can't...

SQ: My most faithful servant loves me.

L: He doesn't love you! He loves Princess Peach!

SQ?: Mario? Mario, you... y-you really...

D: Just ignore him, Luigi! He can barely stand, he's not a threat anymore!

L: B-but Mario - why-

[sniffle]

Why are you protecting that demon!? We're not going to destroy Peach, you know we're not! We just need to get the Shadow Queen out of her-!

M: Luigi, I - I have-a to protect the Queen...

SQ?: Mario... - This vessel's simpering will drive me mad yet. I believe I shall grant you the privilege of witnessing my true form.

L: Mario, no! You...

[choke]

...y-you really did say you'd serve the Shadow Queen, didn't you? I didn't wanna believe it, I never believed it, but you - you really-!

M: Y-yes.... yes, I-a did.

L: [sobbing] Why did you give up? Why!?

SQ?: Oh, Mario, no - no, you would never give up! I'll never give up on you-! - Answer him, slave. I need a moment.

M: I...

I-a can't explain, 'uigi... it won't-a make sense...

I-a remember...

...'member having a choice - what would-a happen if I said yes? I didn't want-a hurt Peach... b-but now...

I can't help-a you little bro... Daisy... I c-can't think of a-anything but to protect-a the Queen... nn-no matter how-a much I fight it...

L: No, NO! [sobbing continues]

D: Luigi, get it together! Are you just gonna let her win!?

M: Th-the only reason I can tell-a you this is to buy-a the Queen some time... like she-a wanted...

SQ: YOU MAY CEASE STALLING, SLAVE.

[Luigi's sobbing cuts off]

D: [detachedly] That's the second biggest purple she-demon I have ever seen.

SQ: YOU WILL KNOW ME AS YOUR QUEEN!

D: HEART SHIELD-!

[lightning crashes]

L: WAAAAGH!

[smacking sound]

D: AAAAH!

SQ: YOU ARE LUCKY... YOU WILL PERISH WITH THE HONOR OF SEEING TRUE TERROR AND POWER!

L: Uggh - you monster! HI-YAAAAH!

D: Yaaah!

[double smack]

SQ: YOUR ATTACKS ARE LIKE THOSE OF A CHILD TO ME.

D: [unsettled] My shields have no effect on her-!

L: [terrified] W-we're not hurting her at all!

SQ: DID YOU NOT KNOW? I AM INVINCIBLE!

[lightning crashes]

[smacking sound]

D: AAAAGH-!

L: Daisy-!

D: I... can't... move...

SQ: YOU HAVE NO HOPE AGAINST ME!

L: THUNDERRR!

[electric crackle]

SQ: YOU CALL THAT A THUNDERBOLT?

THIS IS A THUNDERBOLT.


[electric BOOM]

L: WAAAAAAAAAGGH!

M: Luigi... little bro...

L: Ohhh...

...oh, no...

SQ: HMMMM... WHAT TROUBLESOME LITTLE PESTS YOU ARE. MUH HUH HUH HUH HUH...

I WILL ASK YOU AGAIN... WILL YOU SERVE ME? IF SO, I WILL FORGIVE YOU FOR THIS...


D: Lu... igi...

L: Suh-sorry, Daisy... I can't... get up...

PRINCESS PEACH: Luigi - Daisy-!

SQ: YOU BE QUIET, OR I'LL DISCARD YOU AND MAKE THE OTHER ONE MY HOST!

D: P-Peach...

SQ: THIS IS THE LAST TIME I WILL OFFER YOU MERCY, SILLY GIRL IN YELLOW. GIVE ME THE BLACK BOXES.

D: ...o-okay... have Peach come here...

L: D-Daisy-? Wh-what are you-?

[Peach's footsteps]

SQ: MUH HUH HUH... GOOD. ONE OF YOU SHOWS SENSE.

P: Daisy - cousin - I'm sorry, I'm so sorry-!

D: [weakly] Hush. No time for tears. Listen.

You have to give up.

I-I know you w-want hold out hope... y-you have to give up praying for rescue. Mario can't help you. H-he would if he could... I kn-know he would...

M: Peach... aaagh...

SQ: YESSSS, GIVE MY MORTAL HOST THE BOX!

D: [fainter] Four boxes... four heroes... only sacrifice can seal the Queen here for another thousand years... open the box and let it take you...

SQ: I CAN SENSE THE SECOND BOX ON YOU. GIVE IT TO MY HOST AS WELL!

D: No, the second box is for me.

L: Wha... Daisy, NO! Y-you said we wouldn't do that! You promised!

D: I lied. Forgive me.

SQ: WHAT?

[creak]

L: DAISY!

D: AAAAAH-!

[VWOOOSH]

[click-snap]

L: D-Daisy... Daisy! Nn-no, no, no!

SQ: OBNOXIOUS BRAT. YOUR LONE SACRIFICE MEANS NOTHING.

P: No... why...

Mario, why... why didn't you save her? Y-you always save us, why didn't... why didn't you do something - anything-!

M: Aaaagh...

P: [sadly] You really can't help anyone now, can you?

[sniffle]

I d-don't want to give up on you... I waited for so long... waited and prayed... I... I-I lo-...

SQ: ENOUGH OF THIS WHINING. YOU ARE MY HOST. YOU SHOULD KNOW YOUR PLACE BY NOW.

P: [fiercely] You witch! Mario said he would serve you, but I never did!

[creak]

P: AAAAIEEE!

[VWOOOSH]

[click-snap]

M: P-Peach? PEACH-!

L: AAAACK!

[Luigi breaks down sobbing]

This is all a bad dream - make it go away - make it go away-!

SQ: IT SEEMS I AM IN NEED OF A NEW HOST, AFTER ALL.

YOU, GREEN HERO. YOU WILL BE SUFFICIENT UNTIL A WORTHIER BODY CAN BE FOUND. BUT FIRST...


L: Nnnnno, no, no no no no no no NOOOOOOOO!

M: Luigi...

[Luigi wails]

SQ: QUIT THAT ABOMINABLE WEEPING AND GIVE ME THE BOXES ON YOUR PERSON.

[Luigi's wailing subsides]

L: [stunned shock] I just realized something.

SQ: DO NOT STALL ME.

L: Th-this... everything... it all went bad when Mario did something he'd never, ever do... he said he'd be your servant... Mario would never do that-!

...and then Toadsworth had to do something he'd never do... he had to make himself into a hero... he had to disobey Princess Peach...

...and Daisy - she lied to me! She lied! To me! Daisy would never, ever do that-!

...and Peach - Peach would never give up on Mario, never, not for anything! P-Peach had... had to...

SQ: THIS IS THE LAST TIME I WILL OFFER YOU MERCY, YOU SNIVELLING GREEN WRETCH.

...a-and now I... I-I have to do something I'd never, ever, ever do-!

[rustle]

SQ: TAKING OFF YOUR HAT TO YOUR QUEEN? GOOD. YOU WILL COME TO KNOW TRUE HAPPINESS AS MY SERVANT.

L: Bye-bye.

SQ: WHAT?

[creak]

L: WAAAAAUGH-!

[VWOOOSH]

[click-snap]

M: LUIGI! Little bro-!

SQ: THIS BEGINS TO VEX ME.

M: No... no...

SQ: YOU UNGRATEFUL WASTRELS - NONE OF YOU APPRECIATED THE PARADISE I OFFER! DID YOU THINK TO IMPRISON ME? THERE ARE ONLY THREE OF YOU! YOU HAVE GIVEN UP YOUR LIVES AND SOULS FOR NOTHING!

M: Nnngh-no... no-!

Nnnot... not-a for nothing... they-a did it to protect you.

SQ: WHAT?

M: To-a protect you - seal you here for-a thousand years - safe in here - I-a must keep you safe-

SQ: WOULD YOU TWIST THE LETTER OF THE PLEDGE BINDING YOU? YOU ARE NO LONGER A HERO. YOU ARE MY SLAVE!

M: I was-a hero once - to protect-a my Queen, I'll-a be one again-!

SQ: KEEP AWAY FROM THAT BOX!

[lightning crash]

M: AAAH-!

[smacking sound]

M: OOF-!

SQ: YOU TRAITOROUS VERMIN! HOW DARE YOU DEFY ME! I THOUGHT YOU LOVED ME!

M: [pained] I will-a protect you!

SQ: NO! NOT ANOTHER THOUSAND YEARS IN THIS MISERABLE TOMB! DON'T TOUCH THAT BOX!

M: [sternly] C-... come on, my Queen. Let's-a go.

SQ: YOU WILL NOT UNDO ME! THIS ENDS NOW!

DIE!


[electric BOOM]

M: [simultaneous] AAAAAH-!



GPS LOG: Rogueport, Podley's Place
Year 20XX, Day %0
3:42 p.m.

[click]

LUIGI: [hesitantly] -sure you pressed the right switch?

PRINCESS DAISY: The bright red button with the label reading "press to start"?

L: Uh-huh.

D: Let's hope so.

L: You think it's working? The little green light is on.

D: Where did you find this unusual device?

L: Well...

D: "Gadd Science Inc. Existential 2099: Guaranteed functional in second, third, and fourth dimensions and all associated temporal vectors" - this looks like an advanced tool for recor-

...for... for recording...

L: Daisy? Daisy, you okay?

D: Ohhh...

[rustle]

D: ...ohh... I... I feel strange...

[long pause]

Luigi... have you ever felt like... like something awful just happened to you? And you can't remember exactly what it was...?

L: [cheerfully] Oh, yeah. Tons of times. Sometimes I can't sleep at night.

[more subdued] Hey - hey, Daisy, what's wrong?

D: I...

I've never lied to you before, but... but...

[long pause]

...what if I did? What if I - what if I lied to you?

Would we still be friends...?

L: Aw, shucks, Daisy, is that all that's bothering you?

Everyone has secrets. Everyone has to hide some things. I, uh, well, you know I don't always tell you everything, right? Even Mario and me don't tell each other everything.

Hey, come on, don't cry - what's gotten into you? You're always so sunny.

D: [sniffle] Then y-you'd forgive me - w-we would be friends - even if I kept secrets from you - even if I lied about something terrible-

L: 'Course we would. Best friends forever.

[long silence]

[Daisy sighs]

D: Wait a minute. Luigi - your recorder - was it always like that?

L: Always what?

D: Look at it. It's got dents, fingerprints, dirt smudges - ew, is that barf?

Wasn't your recorder brand new? Just a moment ago, I thought it was shiny.

L: Oh, yeah. Oh - huh?

D: [thoughtfully] "Gadd Science Inc."... haven't you told me about Professor E. Gadd before? He's the genius who invented your ghost-sucking vacuum cleaner.

L: My Poltergust 3000? Oh, yeah.

D: Did he give you this? I wonder if a ghost tampered with it - this is spooky-

L: WAAAAUGH!

D: Luigi?

[panicked footsteps]

D: What are you-

[VROOOOOOM]

[loud clanging]

D: [muffled, distant] Did you just suck your recorder into your Poltergust 3000?

L: Daisy, g-g-ghosts are dangerous, you can't ever mess with them, or anything touched by them!

D: But I was just speculating; we don't know it was a...

...a...

[pause]

D: Is it sunset already?

L: Wha... where'd all this darkness come from?

[Daisy's footsteps]

D: I don't think there was an eclipse forecast for today, was there? Look outside - it's turning pitch black.

L: Oh, no.

D: It's getting cold... I can't see.

L: [teeth chattering]

D: Luigi, I... I'm scared.

L: [gulp] Me too.



PALACE OF SHADOW
Shadow Queen's Crypt
3:55 p.m.

SHADOW QUEEN: Who are these... beings that stand before me? They do not appear to possess power... but they may be of use. If you become my faithful servants, I will not harm you.

GOOMBELLA: Wh-what do we do, Mario? I mean, no WAY can we agree to serve her!
____________________________________
|
| * Refuse this witch!
|
|    Become her servant.
|
|____________________________________

[vwip]

SQ: I see... so you defy me...

How... amusing...

Then you wretched fools... you will learn the error of your ways!