Legend of Zelda: Sin of Sheikari “Prologue”

When evil ruled all, an awakening voice from the Sacred Realm would call those destined to be Sages, who dwelled in the five temples.

Long esteemed as attendants of the royal family of Hyrule, the Sheikah spoke of many ancient legends. They were an old, secretive people, their crimson eyes and gray hair denoting their heritage and wisdom. It was no surprise then that Impa had foreseen Ganondorf’s attack on the castle and spirited Zelda away to a remote hideout, an abandoned village on the outskirts of Hyrule. The knights, noble and steadfast as they were, wouldn’t be enough.

Perhaps Impa knew there was little of chance of the royal family’s survival without the Ocarina of Time, the key to opening the Door of Time that led to the Sacred Realm. Zelda had given the ocarina to the boy from the forest, a parting gift for his journey to another realm.

He was to return one day, a champion ready to save Hyrule from the King of Evil. The awakening call would summon the Sages, who would lend their power to the Hero of Time and fell Ganon once and for all. Hyrule deserved that peace. Zelda’s prophecies had shown her as much.

Seven years later, there had been no awakening call, just as there had been no Hero of Time.

Zelda etched the fact into her mind as she slipped into her tights. She carefully wrapped her chest and torso, binding it so that she could move more freely in combat. She looked down at her hands, noticing that less than half of her fingers were wrapped in bandages now. Her training was going a lot better, though Impa constantly reminded her she had much to learn if she wanted to survive a fight against a trained Sheikah warrior.

She sighed, allowing the breeze to sweep her hair across her face. It still smelled faintly of wood and fire, something she’d never grow used to. Princesses didn’t wear bandages on their fingers. They didn’t jump from trees or collect bruises from sparring matches with their caretaker.

Yes, it was true she wouldn’t survive a fight with a Sheikah warrior. Her destiny was to lead the Sages in battle, after all, but that was before the Hero’s disappearance. She wasn’t just a princess now, and she’d have to be resourceful, using every single skill at her disposal. To defeat her adversary, she’d only have her magic, the techniques Impa had taught her, and her cunning.

It would all have to be enough.

She plaited her hair into a tight braid, tucking it into her hood before wrapping her head in an enchanted cloth designed to disguise her appearance. To everyone else, she’d have red eyes and a masculine physique, resembling a trained Sheikah warrior. They’d hardly suspect she was anything close to royalty, and she needed that advantage. Yes, the people of Hyrule would need to know she was still alive, but not yet. She couldn’t be recognized until the time was right.  

Ganondorf would be the first to see her face before she destroyed him forever.

She paused before clenching her fists as the memory flashed in her mind. Her father, King Arwulf Ramuleese Hyrule, prepared to banish Ganondorf from the realm. The royal guards surrounded him, each with a spear pointed at his throat, but the dark wizard merely smiled, as if it was an amusing inconvenience.

“You may banish me today, but I will return for my throne.”

There was such malice and arrogance in his voice, as if he was confident no one in the room could defeat him. The guards inched their spears closer, the tips now prodding against his green skin. Still, his gaze didn’t break, eyes the color of gold and filled with hatred. A young Zelda shivered as she ducked behind her father’s throne. The king grunted before speaking.

“You will have nothing, and you will be nothing.”

Ganondorf chuckled, as if completely unaware of the spears ready to end his life in mere seconds. “I have as much of a claim to this kingdom as you do.”

The guards scoffed in unison, instantly offended by the madman’s words. How could such an evil man dare to say such a thing? What claim could someone who wanted the Triforce for nefarious deeds have for Hyrule? He couldn’t be serious! The king rose to his feet, staring down at Ganondorf with nothing short of disgust.  

“A vile creature like you could never rule Hyrule!” he hissed through gritted teeth. “You would only bring the Goddess’ chosen land to ruin!”

Ganondorf’s hateful glare softened into a confident smirk, but he remained completely still. “Chosen land, you say? Would that include the Shadow Temple?”

The king scoffed, shaking his head in disbelief. Zelda scrunched up her nose, also confused. She’d heard of the Shadow Temple. Impa told her the Sheikah guarded it, and the Sheikah were protectors of the royal family. Of course the temple was part of Hyrule! What was this crazed warlock going on about?

“What madness are you speaking of?” asked the king.

Ganondorf sighed, closing his eyes. For a few moments, he said nothing, and the room went completely silent. It was an unsettling quiet, so unordinary Zelda thought she could hear Ganondorf breathing from across the room. He finally opened his eyes, seemingly satisfied with whatever conclusion he’d needed time to work out.

“I have been accused of many things today,” he spread out his arms, once again ignoring the spears as he gestured around the room, “but I am not mad. I wished to form an alliance between you and my people, yet you draw your swords against me. The Gerudo deserve a place in this kingdom just as the Gorons, Zoras, and others have established.”

The king slammed his fist against the arm of his throne. “You and the Gerudo deserve nothing! None of you pledged yourselves to the Golden Goddesses, the creators of this land! You worship the sand goddess and live as thieves and cutthroats.”

Thievery,” Ganondorf smiled as if the word tasted sweet. “You know much about thievery, don’t you? Yet, between the two of us, you are a much bigger thief, my king.”

The king roared, startling Zelda, who gasped much louder than she intended. Ganondorf met her gaze, those shining golden eyes burying into her. Pulling her in. Inviting her to breathe in his miasma and rage. No! She darted out of view behind her father’s throne, still able to see him but certain the guards were going to end the dark wizard right there, but Ganondorf raised his hands, signaling he meant no harm.

“I will depart from this place,” he said, “but I will also leave behind a sentiment. Light will always cast a shadow, Your Majesty. They are both eternal, and you would do well to remember the shadows.”

Zelda loosened the grip on her kodachi, sighing in frustration. She’d always suspected Ganondorf to be up to something, but it wasn’t until the boy from the forest, Link, had warned her that she built up the courage to alert the kingdom. Courage. Was that was she was missing now?

Link spoke about a different time, a tangent where Ganondorf succeeded in entering the Sacred Realm and becoming the owner of the Triforce of Power. Link wielded the Triforce of Courage, while Zelda wielded the Triforce of Wisdom. With the Sacred Realm turned into a place of darkness, new Sages awakened across the land. Zelda became the leader of those Sages and sealed Ganondorf away forever once Link defeated him. It was why Zelda had to defeat him now before he found another way into the Sacred Realm.

Because the Hero of Time was not going to save them.

Zelda gave Link the Ocarina of Time to aid him in his journey to find his friend, urging him to call upon the Goddess of Time should he face any trouble. She’d hoped he would soon return from where he’d ventured off to, but seven years had passed since then. She couldn’t hope anymore. She had to act.

She had to awaken the Sages herself.

“Seems like you’re going after all.”

Zelda didn’t turn to face Impa, knowing she’d been watching for quite some time. Instead, she continued to equip herself with everything she needed as her guardian observed.

“Hyrule can still be saved.”

She heard Impa sigh and knew she was shaking her head. She’d done it so many times since Zelda mentioned her plan to awaken the Ancient Sages.

“Will they even fight alongside you?” Impa asked. “You said yourself their slumber is meant to be eternal. If the Sacred Realm becomes endangered, then new Sages will be awakened.”

“There will be no Hero in this timeline.”

“You don’t know that.”

Zelda paused, clenching her fists again. It was the same argument time and time again. It had been this way for months now. How long did Impa intend for them to wait? Seven more years? A hundred? No. She had to set off now. She could no longer delay.

“Hyrule has been a realm of darkness for seven long years, and Link never returned,” she said. “I know that I have the power to stop Ganondorf, even if I can’t wield the Master Sword. I will not give up on my people, my father, my legacy.”

“No one said you were giving up,” said Impa, “but you must remember this: when something doesn’t want to be awakened, it’s best to leave it be. There’s a reason the Ancient Sages chose eternal slumber.”

“They were privileged enough to make that choice. I am not.”

Zelda reached for the Goddess Harp, gifted to her by her late mother, and began strumming it. Each note echoed as if being stretched across unfathomable distances. As beautiful, haunting notes filled the air around them, tendrils of green light erupted from the ground, swirling around her like leaves caught in a shifting autumn breeze.

“I will find the Ancient Sages,” Zelda’s voice echoed as the green light tendrils encircled her, obscuring her from view. “One in a deep forest. One on a high mountain. One under a vast lake. One within the house of the dead. One inside a goddess of sand.”

“Fine,” Impa’s voice stayed calm and patient, even in the face of Zelda’s defiance. “It’s clear I won’t convince you, but I have warned you, Zelda.”

“From this moment on, I am Sheik,” Zelda corrected Impa as her feet left the ground. “I will not reveal my identity until I confront Ganondorf.”

“Sheik,” Impa repeated the name. “A member of the Sheikah clan awakening the Ancient Sages. You’re certainly going to catch Ganondorf’s attention.”

Zelda turned to face Impa as she began to finally vanish.

“And when he falls to his knees before me, I will have caught so much more.”

Super Smash Tournament of Power Chapter Seven

***Please Note this is a Fan Fic. I do not own the copyright to any of the licensed characters or properties. This is simply for fun. Opening video is animated by Shiya Moegin***

Truthfully, I wouldn’t be caught dead with this crowd, but those scheming bastards left me with no choice. I’m not a fool. As soon as that shadow thing gives the go ahead, the loners will be the first to go. It’s simply the way of things.

So, I was left with no other choice than to assemble this band of misfits together. We look absolutely atrocious as a team, but I believe we’ll stand a chance. Even though she’s got three sticks up her ass at all times, Samus is tough. We need tough.

Isabelle and the Villager have joined us now. Villager is one of those weirdos like Link who doesn’t talk. Isabelle often has to speak for him. The only reason I allowed him into our circle is because of her. Besides, he seems just as harmless as Olimar, and he’s adorable to boot! I can’t bring myself to allow him to get taken out so quickly.

“Marth and his warriors are gathering on the east side. The villains are at the north. Other factions are scattered along the southern side,” Samus scans the arena, trying to form a strategy for us to follow. “I don’t think it’s wise to stay here in the southwestern quadrant. There’s no activity on the western side, so I imagine the villains may come this way first.”

“Oh dear!” Isabelle gasps. “Should we move somewhere else?”

Samus shakes her head. “That’ll put us right in the middle of everything. It’s going to be pure chaos in the beginning. There’s no telling who’s going to attack first or if anyone’s going to hold their positions.”

I shake my head, sighing deeply. “Well, it certainly keeps things interesting.”

“It said objects are going to fall from the sky,” Samus turns to face us. “A few of us should be dedicated to finding the strongest weapons to keep away from the others. If you see a Pokeball, for instance, take it immediately and throw it. Stop whatever it is you’re doing to chase after it. Same goes with the Smash Ball.”

Isabelle, Villager, and Olimar nod. Wii Fit Trainer pumps her fist in the air.

“Work toward strong, firm abs!” she says.

I sigh. I guess she can’t say anything normal after all. Samus is right, though. It’s going to be a complete maelstrom once this thing gets going. I can only hope that we’re prepared for what’s coming. I look at the Villager, who waves at me with a cheerful expression.

“He’s very glad to be fighting beside you,” says Isabelle. She too looks jolly as always. Such innocence. It’s as if all we’re going to do is take a walk in some damn park together.

Olimar is shivering like always. He has a few of his Pikmin at his side now. I’m not exactly sure what they do, but hopefully they can help us.

I stare up towards the sky, and I can still see them. Samus didn’t say anything about the Master Hand or Crazy Hand. Apparently, they’re not a part of her plan, but they just might become a part of mine. If I can survive the initial chaos of this tournament, I should have time to devise a new strategy.

I’m going to take out that shadow son of a bitch.

It’s either that, or I win the tournament. I can’t say what the odds are yet as it’s too early to tell. I scan the field, noting the villains in the north. If they come this way, we’ll have to engage them. Hopefully, someone will help us take some of them out.

“Bayonetta, I don’t think you’ve ever been this quiet,” Samus is watching me. Even though I can’t see behind her green visor, I know she’s concerned.

“Nothing to be worried about, tin tits,” I say. “I simply needed a moment to think a few things through.”

Samus turns away from us. “Not getting cold feet, are you?”

“Samus, when you have guns on your feet, you’re never cold.”

Samus gestures towards the arena. “Good, because we’re going to need you throughout this entire thing.”

I cross my arms, trying to stifle a grin. She’s right. I can’t lose my nerve now. It’s unlike me to be this anxious about anything. Still, I can’t shake the sinister feeling that sociopathic demon child gives off. I’ve fought in this universe before, but this time it’s different.

Just like Galeem and Dharkon, we’ll end up having to fight that creature. That’s what makes me nervous. Galeem and Dharkon were stronger than any other enemy we’ve ever faced, and Galeem wiped us out with a single attack in the beginning. It created an entire world with one swipe.

Now this thing says it’ll wipe out our entire home universe if we lose. How can we defeat something that powerful when we’re too busy fighting each other?

It’s all about survival now. We have no choice. Someone has to win and defeat the creepy shadow kid. Then, maybe, we can figure out how to fix everything.

Samus has turned back to face me now, stiff and sallow as always. She wants confirmation that I’m not going to change my mind about working with her. I’ll play along for now, but when the opportunity presents itself I’m going after that thing. She’ll just have to understand.

“Let’s give them hell, tin tits.”

Super Smash Tournament of Power Chapter Six

***Please Note this is a Fan Fic. I do not own the copyright to any of the licensed characters or properties. This is simply for fun. Opening video is animated by Shiya Moegin***

“You disappeared again, Sonic. We couldn’t find you.”

Amy would always look at me with that weird look on her face, the one she gave me before she started being all lovey-dovey and gross. I’d always try to find a way out of the conversation, but she’d just end up chasing me until I gave her a good-enough answer.

“I went back to the battlefield,” I’d say.

“Why do they keep calling you there?” her face would get even weirder, like she was about to cry. It was so annoying. “Every time you go away, I’m afraid you won’t come back.”

“Nothing’s gonna stop me from coming back. You know that.”

She’d start digging a hole in the dirt with her foot. “Yeah, I know. I just wish you didn’t have to go. I wish one of us could come with you. Can’t you tell them that?”

I’d shrug. “I don’t decide who goes. I just wake up, and I’m there.”

I race to the other side of the arena. I’ve gotta find Inkling and tell him our plan. I meant to go to him sooner, but Meta Knight told me to talk to Link and Mario first. I’ve gotta get the message to as many people as I can before this thing starts, or it’ll get too chaotic.

No matter what part of the arena I go to, I can’t find him anywhere. I just saw him with Snake while I was finishing up with Link. Where could he have gone? I don’t see Snake anywhere either, and I start to get nervous. Are the bad guys knocking people out already? That shouldn’t be possible. The tournament hasn’t even started yet!

I spot two figures to my left behind a pillar. It’s Megaman and Pac-Man! I zoom over, and Megaman points his arm cannon at me and starts charging it.

“Hey, wait a minute!” I wave my hands in front of me. “Not here to cause trouble! I have a message from Meta Knight.”

Megaman lowers his cannon, while Pac-Man scratches his head in confusion. Good, I think they’ll listen.

“When Meta Knight gives the signal, we’re all going to stop fighting each other and attack the shadow kid,” I say. “If we all attack him at once, we should be able to stop him. What do you say?”

Megaman and Pac-Man nod. I figured they’d want to help out. The heroic types are usually pretty easy to persuade. It’s the loners like Snake and Cloud who I may have some trouble with.

I still don’t see any sign of Inkling anywhere. Man, I hope he’s okay, wherever he is! I was going to ask him to team up with me since he’s good at hiding. Maybe that’s what he’s doing now. Maybe I’ll see him when the tournament starts.

I have to make sure I survive until the end. Amy, Tails, Knuckles, even Shadow, I can’t let any of them down. I can hear them now. Just the other day, Tails and I were talking about what would happen if I got called back to fight again.

“I’ll hold down the fort like always!” Tails pumped his fist in the air as we sat on the beach. “You just do what needs to be done and come back quick, okay?”

“Yeah, no problem!” I said.

“Eventually, I’m going to join you as well.”

Tails and I turned to see Shadow leaning against a palm tree with his eyes closed.

“What do you mean, Shadow?” I asked.

“I’m not always going to be in just a supporting role,” Shadow opened his eyes, and his face took on that super serious look. He’s always so mad. I don’t get it. “Eventually, whatever calls you there will call upon me as well.”

“And how would you know?” I asked.

“Because, you’re nothing more than a plaything,” Shadow walked over to us, pointing at me, “and the master of that world likes to collect fighters. As long as you keep calling me through the Assist Trophies, I’ll eventually be recognized. And then…”

“And then what?” asked Tails.

Shadow stopped, dropping his hand to his side. “And then I can figure out what it is and destroy it.”  

Shadow’s always been kind of a weirdo, but I’m starting to wonder if he had the right idea all along. I’ve always thought about why we have to fight every time we were brought here, but it never seemed like there was any reason for it. We’d fight a few times, go toe-to-toe against some big baddie, then eventually go back to our home worlds.

“Hey, Sonic, wait up!”

I skid to a stop, waving the smoke from my shoes out of my face. I look around to see where the voice came from, but I don’t see anybody.

“Up here! Sorry, should have said something huh?”

I look up to see Pit and Palutena floating down from the sky. They both land in front of me.

“What’s up, Pit and Palutena?”

Palutena smiles at me, while Pit rushes forward and grabs my hand.

“Who are you teamed up with?” he asks. “Fake Pit went to join the bad guys, so we’re trying to form a team for when the tournament starts.”

I yank my hand back. Pit’s always really excited about something, but I’m kind of in a hurry right now. Then, what he just said dings in my mind. “The bad guys are joining forces? Well, that’s not surprising. Bad guys hate to fight alone.”

Pit nods. “So, will you join us?”

I rub my chin, thinking about Inkling. I still need to find him and tell him what’s going on.

“Sure,” I say, “but have you seen Inkling anywhere? I can’t find him, and I need to give him a message.”

“Message?” asks Pit. “What message? Tell us!”

“Oh, that’s right!” I say, remembering I needed to find these two anyway. “Meta Knight’s going to give a signal. When he does, we’re all going to stop fighting and attack the shadow kid.”

Pit draws back in shock. “You’re serious? You think we can beat that thing?”

I shrug. “Don’t know for sure, but we’ve fought stuff like him before, right?”

Pit pauses for a second, as if he’s unsure of how to respond. Then, he nods.

“Guess you’re right,” he says. He turns to Palutena. “What do you think?”

“Well…” Palutena rubs her staff as she considers her answer. “It won’t be easy, Pit. We don’t know what the others are going to do once the tournament starts.”

“Yeah, you’re right,” says Pit. He turns to face me again. “You can count on us to be by your side, Sonic! We’ve drafted another member before you, by the way.”

Another figure emerges from behind a tall white pillar. I only know one person with spiky yellow hair.

“Cloud!” I say. “You heard everything, right?”

Cloud nods, and as usual he looks bored, like none of this even affects him. “Normally, I wouldn’t care what happened to everyone else, but I’m not exactly in the best position either. So, I’ll help out.”

“Great!” Pit jumps up and down, while Palutena sighs in exasperation. He must always be this excited about everything. “I think we should keep recruiting until it starts!”

I nod. “I gotta finish relaying the message, but I’ll find you as soon as I’m done!”

I take off before Pit gets a chance to say anything else. I don’t have much time left, and there’s still a lot of people I need to talk to. I remember Shadow’s words as I zoom along.

“And then I can figure out what it is and destroy it.”

Maybe we can actually do it.

5.5 minutes until the tournament begins.

Super Smash Tournament of Power Chapter Five

***Please Note this is a Fan Fic. I do not own the copyright to any of the licensed characters or properties. This is simply for fun. Opening video is animated by Shiya Moegin***

Man, I didn’t sign up for this junk. I wanted to spend the day bustin’ caps in my rivals butts in an Ink Battle, not this! This place is already creepy, and then that freaky shadow kid tells us our dimension gets wiped out if we lose? What’s a squid gotta do?

Everybody else is already posted up in the arena by now, so I flew down here to find a spot to hide. I’m not about to go down first, that’s for sure! My plan is super simple: I’m gonna hide in the ground and sneak up on people! When they least expect it, I’ll knock them out of the ring. It’s the perfect plan!

I’m just about to pump up my blaster when somebody taps me on the shoulder.

“Whoa, whoa, whoa!” I flip around, ready to ink down the person who’s already starting trouble. It’s a human, and he’s got on some ugly military outfit with a bandana around his head. I think I’ve seen him around before.

“Yo, Solid Snake, right?” I keep my blaster pointed at his forehead. I don’t know what he wants, but I’m not taking any chances. He can get wrecked right here and now if he wants.

Snake holds up a palm and shakes his head. “I’m not here to start a fight with you.”

“Good,” I say. “Cuz I’ll bust you up otherwise!”

“And then what?” Snake chuckles. “You gonna go back to hiding? Good luck with that. They’ll find you eventually, and a lot sooner than you think.”

“I-I’ve got a plan!” I mumble. How did he know I was hiding? Dang, he’s smart! “What do you want anyway?”

“Look to the northern side of the arena,” Snake folds his arms. Gah, he’s always so serious and boring!

I look to my left and right, but I can’t tell what he’s talking about. Is he trying to confuse me so he can bum rush me? Is that how it’s gonna be?

“What are you talking about?” I ask.

Snake sighs and droops his head. He then points to the far side of the field. From where I’m standing, I can see some of those scary monsters I saw earlier. I see Bowser and a few others. Looks like they’re up to something.

“The bad guys,” I observe. “They’re banding together. That’s lame. You think they got a plan or something?”

Snake nods his head. “I know for a fact they have a plan. I was able to listen in on their meeting earlier. They had no idea I was there. Basically, they’re coordinating to wipe out all of the heroes and get everyone else to go to Hyrule, where Ganondorf is from.”

“Ganondorf?” I start to shiver all over. “Geez, not that creep! Why can’t they just be chill like krill? Why they gotta be scheming?”

Snake shakes his head. “It’s in their nature, which means it’s going to make it harder for fighters like us.”

I tilt my head to the side. “What do you mean ‘fighters like us?’”

Snake gestures towards our surroundings, noting all the other warriors taking their positions. A lot of them are grouping up with people from their own dimensions, and it doesn’t take me long to figure out what Snake means.

“Yeah, I got ‘cha,” I answer. “You think they’ll try to merc us out first, huh?”

“That would be the smart thing to do,” says Snake. “Clean house and show the others you mean business. Then take on the groups with more people.”

“Is that what you came all the way over here to say?” I fold my arms. Nah, there’s something more to this. Ganondorf and his dorky friends aren’t the only ones scheming. “What do you want, Snake?”

“I thought you would have figured it out by now,” says Snake. “Let’s team up, you and I. We’re both experts in stealth, and we’ll need to hide while the big groups duke it out for a bit.”

I stomp my foot. “You just said hiding was useless!”

“In the long run, yes,” says Snake, “but there’s a way for us to buy ourselves some time.”

“What do you mean?” I ask.

Snake shakes his head and holds a finger up to his head. “There’s too many ears. Follow me, and I’ll show you.”

He turns and starts walking off, and I run to catch up. Why doesn’t he just tell me what this weird plan is? Why do guys like him have to make everything mysterious and complicated all the time? I guess when you dress like he does you have to be. If you can’t be fresh, at least you can be interesting.

After a while, I notice we’re reaching the edge of the arena, and I stop.

“Hey, what is this?”

Snake stops and turns to face me, but I can’t make out his expression. Ah, so that’s how it is, huh?

“You’re just trying to lure me to the edge so you can knock me out first, huh?”

Snake shakes his head, and I think he’s about to say something when I hear footsteps behind me. Turning around, I see a dude with a red bandana tied around his head standing with a blonde-haired guy in a red track suit. What is this, corny outfit day? I think the one with the red bandana is Ryu, while the other guy must be Ken.

“It’s a trap,” I turn to face Snake. “Isn’t it?”

“Ryu, Ken, what brings you here?” Snake ignores my question and speaks to the two newcomers.

“We thought we’d test a little theory,” Ken starts smiling. It looks mad creepy.

“Oh, and what’s that?” asks Snake.

“We wanna see what happens if we knock someone out of the ring before the tournament starts,” Ken shrugs before he turns to Ryu. “What do you think, Ryu?”

Ryu doesn’t answer. Instead, he gives Snake this mad serious glare like he’s going to shoot lasers out of his eyes. I don’t remember if he can do that or not, and I don’t think I want to find out. I dash to Snake’s side, now convinced he’s not in on this junk. Snake looks down at me and nods his head.

I take out my blaster, and I’m just about to fire it at Ken when Snake roundhouse kicks me in the face. I stumble backward, and I can feel the edge of the arena right under the balls of my feet. I flail my arms around, trying to catch myself, but it’s too late. The sky turns upside down as I begin to fall from the arena. I can’t believe I trusted a guy named Snake.

I’m too fresh to go out like this.

6 minutes until the tournament begins.

Super Smash Tournament of Power Chapter Four

***Please Note this is a Fan Fic. I do not own the copyright to any of the licensed characters or properties. This is simply for fun. Opening video is animated by Shiya Moegin***

Meta Knight

I knew the moment I awakened that this would be no ordinary battle. I’ve fought alongside Kirby and King DeDeDe countless times against incredibly powerful enemies. Without having faced him yet, I know that strange being is stronger than any foe I’ve faced, stronger than the Master Hand, Tabuu, Galeem, all of them.

Yet I must risk fighting it if my dimension is to survive.

The others have departed now, gone to take their positions on the arena below. Only Dark Pit remains, his back turned to me as he stares at the warriors gathering on the battlefield.

“You’re not planning on helping them, are you?” Dark Pit turns to face me, a stern expression on his face. “I should go inform Ganondorf right now that you plan to double cross him during the tournament.”

Reflexively, I take a step back, nearly brandishing my sword before stopping myself. No, now isn’t the time to fight. I may get disqualified if I attack him now. Besides, he didn’t seem as if he was interested in helping Ganondorf at first. I may be able to persuade him to my side.

“You are not like the others,” I say. “You won’t knock Pit out of the arena.”

“Let’s get one thing straight, Bat-Gum,” Dark Pit says. “I’m the original Pit. He’s an imposter, and I will knock him out of the ring.”

I shake my head. He can’t seriously be planning that after finding out the rules of the tournament. “You’d be down a fighter. Every universe needs all the help it can get. Some dimensions have nearly ten fighters each. Several more only have one. You’d really put yourself at a disadvantage?”

Dark Pit folds his arms and sneers. “I don’t need a team. I work alone.”

I walk past him, staring down at the arena. Nearly every fighter is now taking their positions. Most are staying close to others from the same dimension. As I feared, those who are the only representatives of their world are at an extreme disadvantage.

I turn to face Dark Pit again. “Your pride will be your downfall.”  

Dark Pit’s arms remain folded, and his sneer remains. “The only one of us who needs to worry about a downfall is you. You don’t think I know what you’re planning?”

“I’m planning for our survival,” I say. “For the survival of all our dimensions.”

Dark Pit chuckles and points a finger at me.  

“You’re gonna try to stop the tournament,” he says. “You’re gonna try to fight that thing that brought us here. And you’re even more stupid than I thought you were.”

I maintain a neutral expression, but his deduction is incredible! How did he figure out what I’m planning already?

“It was smart of you to send Sonic to relay the message to the heroes,” Dark Pit says, “but it’s useless. You saw what happened just now. It’s all about survival, and that weird shadow kid is stronger than anything we’ve ever faced before.”

I nod. He’s exactly right, but I have to try. I have to find a way to save all of our dimensions and give all of us a fair chance at survival, not just those of us lucky to have several representatives.

“We’ve faced strong enemies before,” I say.

“Yeah, but we haven’t faced an enemy who can erase entire dimensions in the blink of an eye.”

Dark Pit glowers at me, but I have nothing to say as a rebuttal. Even beings like Tabuu and Galeem were able to defeat us all at once with little effort, though we were able to defeat them in the end. Just like them, this shadow child has a weak point. I simply have to find out what that is.

“You’re better off picking a dimension to take everyone to,” Dark Pit says. “Personally, I wouldn’t mind living in Hyrule, but it doesn’t seem like it’s someone like Mario’s style. Or Kirby.”

The thought has occurred to me, to join a dimension with a larger roster of battlers and flee with them, but part of me knows it’s all too simple.

“Do you really think that shadow child will allow something like that?” I ask. “The entire purpose of this tournament is for us to turn against each other in the end. What do you think will happen if we refuse to do so without defeating it first?”

Dark Pit shrugs, folding his arms behind his head. “In the end, I’m gonna complete my mission and find a way to survive all of this. You’d better do the same.”

He unfurls his wings and leaps from the ledge, gliding down to the arena below. I stare down at him as he lands, watching as he takes a confident pose in front of the others. He didn’t say he planned on winning, just that he plans on surviving. Maybe he knows this isn’t a battle any of us can win.

Still, I will not allow anyone’s dimension to be destroyed.

7 minutes until the tournament begins.

Super Smash Tournament of Power Chapter Three

***Please Note this is a Fan Fic. I do not own the copyright to any of the licensed characters or properties. This is simply for fun. Opening video is animated by Shiya Moegin***

Dark Pit

If nothing else, Ganondorf knows how to persuade people. It seems like he can build an army of mindless minions to support his cause in an instant. It’s impressive, but I could never be someone’s servant like my other half. He’s content with being kept on a leash by Palutena. It’s pathetic.

“Where are you going, Pittoo?” he asked when I decided to head out on my own.

“What? You think I’m going to join up with the two of you?” I said, “and stop calling me that. There’s only one copy here. It’s you, the corny one.”

“Oh, come on!” Dumb Pit threw his hands in the air. “Our universe is in danger, and you still wanna play the edgy, mysterious rival role right now?”

“He is pretty edgy,” said Palutena. “You could use some of this edge, Pit.”

“I’ve got plenty of edge where it counts,” said Dumb Pit.

“You two can argue about that stupid phrase all you want,” I said. “I’m going to find a way to win this tournament without any help from either of you.”

“He can’t be serious!” said Dumb Pit.

“Looks like it,” said Palutena. “I don’t know what you were expecting. You know he isn’t fond of you.”

I’ll never be fond of a puppet, especially him. The gods and goddesses think they can use us to fight their battles and win their wars. I won’t be their tool.

I make my way further into the gathering so I that I can better make out what Ganondorf is saying. I end up standing next to a large, obese alligator thing with a golden stomach and bulging eyes. He’s got this silly crown on his head. I wonder what dimension he’s from.

“As you can see, many dimensions and worlds will crumble today,” Ganondorf says, “but I have a plan that could save a select few of us.”

He looks around, surveying all who’ve gathered before him.

“My proposal is simple,” he says. “I will declare you a part of my dimension during the tournament. This way, you won’t face the danger of getting erased even if the other fighters from your world lose. I only ask for one small favor.”

He pauses, and I think he’s waiting to see if anyone disagrees with him. Nobody speaks up, so he continues.  

“When I give the order, you must knock every hero off of the stage,” he says. “Once you’ve done that, I will announce that you have agreed to accompany me back to my world. You’ll then be transported to my dimension once we’ve finished off the rest of the vermin.”

“And how can we trust you?”

The strange, purple dragon that came with evil Samus speaks. I didn’t know that thing could talk! Honestly, I didn’t know Bowser could talk either when I first saw him. I think he prefers to growl and roar most of the time. He probably thinks it makes him seem more menacing. It works for some, I guess.

“I am a man of my word,” Ganondorf says. “In my dimension, there is a beautiful land called Hyrule that is protected by three golden goddesses. With your help, we will conquer that land, and I will allow you to take whatever else you want.”

There are murmurs amongst everyone. So, his world has goddesses too? I stretch out my wings before folding them against my back. This is disappointing. Another world full of beings who manipulate others into fighting for them? This “Hyrule” doesn’t sound very appealing after all.

I don’t think it would be smart to object now, though.

Bowser’s son floats over next to him. He’s still riding around in that toy he uses to fight. I don’t think the kid could manage on his own if he got knocked out of it, but then I guess not all weapons have to be swords and guns. He is a toddler, after all.

“Just think about it, dad,” Bowser Jr. says. “A world without Mario and his annoying little helpers? Do you really want to go back to our dimension and have to deal with them again?”

“You have a point, son,” Bowsers says. He turns to Ganondorf and smashes his claws together. “Ganondorf, count us in.”

“Do you think Peach will come with us?” Bowser Jr. asks.

“I’ll work on that,” Bowser says. “Once I knock Mario and the others out of the ring, she’ll have no choice if she wants to live.”

“Oh boy!” Bowser Jr. spins around as his dad lets out his trademark laugh. It’s a mixture of a roar and a lion heaving up a moldy zebra. I’m not sure why he thinks it sounds cool.

Besides, what is with Bowser’s obsession with Peach? He needs some kind of binding spell that prevents him from getting anywhere near her. That would solve Mario’s problems.

I shake my head. I’m not here to solve anyone else’s problems but my own.

“I can-a help you take dem out,” Wario steps towards the duo. “Peach is-a off-limits, yes, but Daisy?”

This guy is one I’ll need to keep my eye on. He’s like some twisted version of Mario. I don’t think he works for Bowser, but they definitely have it out for that annoyingly cheerful plumber. Bowser finally stops his bloated T-Rex laugh and turns to face Wario.

“I don’t care about her,” he says. “If you want to save her, you can.”

“I don’t,” Wario says. His usual frown creeps up into a grin, revealing his giant, bulbous teeth. “She’ll be-a de first I knock outta de ring.”

Well, that’s pretty brutal. I hope Daisy stays far away from that guy. He’s a creep.

“It doesn’t seem like your world has advanced technology,” this time Wolf speaks, “but it’s no matter. As long as Star Fox isn’t there, I can make do.”

Ganondorf grins to himself, almost as if what Wolf is saying is ironic. I’m not sure I like it when he grins. Actually I’m very certain that I don’t.

“Same goes for me,” the purple dragon speaks again. He turns to Evil Samus, who nods in agreement. What exactly is that thing?

“Count me in as well.”

Heads turn to see who’s spoken up this time. Meta-Knight descends from above, his bat-like wings flapping against the current. I was never a fan of the demonic-looking wings. They’re ugly, and they make gross sounds when they’re flapping. It sounds unnatural.

Once Meta-Knight reaches the ground, his wings transform into his usual cape. He looks over at me, and our eyes lock. I’m sure he’s capable, but I’ve never seen Meta-Knight blink before. He just stares at you with this intense, yellow gaze all the time.

I sense a growing power emanating from his presence, and his cape starts to billow as we continue to glare at each other. Is he trying to intimidate me? I’d better ready to stand my ground if he tries something. As I begin to unfold my wings, he ends our staring contest to address Ganondorf.

“I’ve grown tired of Dream Land,” he says. “It’s a lazy world full of coddled peasantry. They can all get erased.”

Ganondorf nods but quickly looks through the crowd. Who is he searching for?

“Where is your king?” he asks. I assume he means that weird, fat penguin thing. He’s a king? King of what? There can’t be much to rule over when your greatest nemesis is a fighting wad of gum.

“He is a buffoon,” Meta-Knight says. “He doesn’t deserve a place here with us.”

“That is…unfortunate,” Ganondorf shakes his head but maintains his smirk. “He could have been quite useful.”

“He will be the first I knock out of the ring,” Meta-Knight responds. “Then, it will be Kirby.”

“An ambitious plan,” Ganondorf says. He glances towards the rest of the crowd. “I can assume I have the rest of your allegiances as well?”

The others either speak, grunt, or make some strange otherworldly noises in agreement. How can they follow him so easily? Even a complete idiot knows Ganondorf is only out to help himself. He wants power, and he’ll do anything to get it. He’ll even pretend to work with a band of villains who, if they ever decided, could turn against him and eliminate his entire dimension themselves.

Ganondorf nods as he acknowledges everyone who shows support of his scheme. His eyes finally fall on me, and I realize I’m the only one who hasn’t said anything.

“Well?” he says. “What say you, Dark Pit?”

He’s got his army now. I can’t single-handedly take them all out in the ring when they’re this coordinated. I’d expend too much energy and probably take too much damage, which would make me easier to knock out.

For the time being, I’ll have to work with them. I’ll help them knock the others out of the ring, and then I’ll make sure they get knocked out too. I’ll even wipe that smirk off of Ganondorf’s face, but I may need Dumb Pit’s help in the meantime. We can settle our score later.

I will never be someone’s servant.

“I’m in,” I say. “There’s a copycat I need to get rid of.”

8 minutes until the tournament begins.

Super Smash Tournament of Power Chapter Two

***Please Note this is a Fan Fic. I do not own the copyright to any of the licensed characters or properties. This is simply for fun. Opening video is animated by Shiya Moegin***

***WARNING! There’s some bad words in this chapter. If you’re sensitive about that sort of thing. You lame***


I have no allies, only monsters to deal with.

The alien said if we get knocked off the battlefield, we’ll get transported back to our home dimension. If every fighter from one’s home dimension is knocked out, that creature will erase them all from existence.

I don’t want to save the two monsters that followed me here, but none of it matters now. To survive, I’ll have to put our differences aside and rely on them. I reach out to Dark Samus, but it stalks in the other direction with Ridley before I can get a word in.

They don’t head for the arena, which is perplexing. Are they planning to stay behind so they can get transported back to our dimension? Without me there, they could cause as much trouble as they want. Dark Samus only cares about conquering the galaxy and spreading Phazon across any planet it comes across. Ridley is more or less the same.

I watch as they head towards the opposite side of the outer circle. Could they truly be that short-sighted? They’re both pretty single-minded, but they can’t be that out of touch with what’s at stake here. Are Phazon and galactic domination that important right now?

No, that isn’t it. They must have some sort of plan.

My helmet interface picks up movement in my peripheral, and I turn to look down at the arena. I’m able to make out several fighters descending upon it. Several of them are scattering away from each other while others are trying to find a place to hide.

Just as I’m about to take a step forward, I detect movement from behind me. I spin around and point my blaster right in the face of a woman dressed in all black. In response, she brandishes two blue, heavily ornamented pistols.

“My, my,” she says. “I’d love to meet the man who tries to pressure you in the bedroom.”

I begin to slightly charge up my blaster. I don’t intend to shoot her right here, but I will if it comes to it. From the way she’s dressed, she looks as if she’s recently escaped some sort of brothel. Her outfit looks everything except practical, but I’ve learned not to judge my opponents based on appearances. After all, a little pink ball of fluff is just as deadly as a giant turtle dragon here.

“Who are you?” I ask.

She lowers her pistols and turns around. She takes a few steps away before she turns back to face me, her lips rising into a confident smirk.

“I suppose we have a few seconds for introductions,” she replies. “You may call me Bayonetta, love.”

In return, I lower my blaster. Maybe she isn’t here to cause trouble.

“What do you need with me?” I ask.

She folds her arms and tilts her head to the side, and her smirk seems to rise even higher than before.

“Well, even though you’re wearing that atrocious getup,” she says, “I know a womanly figure when I see one. We have to stick together, you know.”

She wants an alliance.

“I’m Samus,” I reply, “and why should I ally with someone who isn’t from my dimension?”

Bayonetta sighs.

“I see,” she says. “You’re about as single-minded as your doppelgänger and its pet crocodile. Tell me you at least know why they’ve run off.”

So, she saw the two of them leave when I tried to explain we needed to stick together, if only just to save our dimension. To be honest, I don’t know why they left, but I know what they’re usually after.

“Ridley and Dark Samus only care about Phazon and collecting life-draining aliens,” I reply.

Bayonetta chuckles, waving one of her pistols in the air.

“Oh, do give them more credit,” she says. “Those two are of the villainous variety, yes? Well, I’ve got a secret for you. The villains are gathering, and those bastards are plotting.”

“Plotting?” I ask. “How do they have time to plot anything? Their own universes are at stake.”

“I didn’t stick around long enough to find out more,” Bayonetta says. “I don’t do well with monologues, I’m afraid. And especially from that one called Ganondork or another. He’s a male warlock, so naturally that’s all he’s good for, and he’s hideous for good measure.”

I feel my body tense up in my suit. This isn’t good. For all of Bayonetta’s jabs, Ganondorf is one of the more capable villains. If he’s forming an alliance with the others, it won’t end well.

“We need to find out what they’re planning,” I say.

“So, then you’re agreeing to work with me?” Bayonetta asks.

“How do I know I can trust you?” I counter.

Bayonetta shakes her head and shrugs. Then, without warning, she points one of her pistols at me again.

“You don’t,” she says, “but understand this, tin woman. If you betray me, I will eliminate you swiftly, and no amount of horrible fashion sense will save you.”

“Same,” I say.

She lowers her pistol and places a hand on her hip.

“Good,” she says as she gestures behind her. “These two will be joining us.”

Two figures approach from behind Bayonetta, and I recognize both of them from a previous fighting cycle. One of them is Captain Olimar, who certainly isn’t a woman. The other is the Wii Fit Trainer, and it seems the female version is here this time.

“What happened to girl power?” I ask, gesturing towards Captain Olimar, “and why these two?”

“Yes, you call the little one Olimar,” Bayonetta says. “The poor thing was shivering all alone when I left that villain sausage party. I couldn’t very well leave him there, you see. He’d get eaten alive on the battlefield, and something tells me he’s the only one from his dimension just like me. Of course, I can’t understand a thing he says.”

She’s right. When Captain Olimar speaks, it sounds like low grunts spoken through a voice masking interface. I’ve tried looking up a way to translate his language before, but it’s no use since he’s from another dimension. Our technology probably wouldn’t even be compatible. Still, he’s a capable fighter, even if the odds are stacked against him.

Wii Fit Trainer can speak. She just has a…limited vocabulary that gets annoying very quickly. I think she’s an A.I. designed to train people, though none of her moves look like regular fighting moves. In fact, most of them look like regular yoga poses, but she’s a strong fighter. It would be unwise to underestimate her.

“The albino is rather annoying, but she seems to be in decent shape,” Bayonetta says. “She’s the only one from her world as well.”

I sigh into my helmet. She realizes at some point she’ll have to fight all of us, right? Sure, this alliance can help make things a little more fair, but we won’t be able to be allies the entire time. At some point, we’ll have to fight each other.

And I intend to win.

“They can come with us as long as they can keep up,” I say. “It’s going to be complete chaos once it starts.”

“Let’s step up the intensity!” Wii Fit Trainer says.

Bayonetta places a hand on her hip and rolls her eyes, while Olimar nods his head and grumbles something incoherent in his native language. I think he’s saying he can handle himself. Let’s hope my guess is right. If any of these fighters falls out of the arena, they’ll be erased from existence right then and there. They only get one chance unlike the rest of us.

Even though Ridley and Dark Samus are my sworn enemies, I may encounter a scenario where I have to help keep them in the ring for as long as possible. I’m certain I won’t be able to honor my agreement with Bayonetta if it comes to that.

“Let’s get fired up!” Wii Fit Trainer pumps her fist into the air as she turns to make her way towards the arena below. Captain Olimar looks at Bayonetta, who ushers him off. He nods quickly before scampering to catch up with Wii Fit Trainer.

“He’s so ugly he’s cute after a while,” Bayonetta says. “Are you ready, dear? We have talking rabbits and electric mice to take down, you know.”

She turns to face the arena, her every movement dripping with self-assuredness. I don’t think I’ve ever met someone so sure of herself. Or is it more accurate to say she’s full of herself?

“Can I ask you a question first?” I say.

Bayonetta turns to face me again, her expression clearly invoking annoyance.

“Yes, I guess we have time for that,” she replies.

“Your outfit,” I say. “It looks like it’s made entirely out of hair. Are you sure I’m the one with questionable fashion sense given our circumstances?”

Bayonetta looks affronted at first, but that confident smirk creeps back onto her face. I guess she understands I’m joking.

“My, my,” she says. “So, you have a personality after all. I’ll make a diva out of you yet, Samus.”

9 minutes until the tournament begins.

Super Smash Tournament of Power Chapter One

***Please Note this is a Fan Fic. I do not own the copyright to any of the licensed characters or properties. This is simply for fun. Opening video is animated by Shiya Moegin***


“Wake up, fearless leader.”

That sarcastic command could only come from Falco. His every word, every move, is always dripping with snark. I slowly rise to my feet, brushing off my tail. How long did I doze off for? We must be waiting for new orders. It’s not like me to ever fall asleep on a mission, and if I need to rest I do it in my Arwing or on the Great Fox.

A dense puff of whiteness obscures my vision, and I quickly wave my hand in front of my face to dissipate it. A cloud? We must be at a high altitude on some strange planet. I scratch between my ears as I try to recall the name of this place.

I look down, hoping to catch a glimpse of the base of a mountain. Maybe that will give me a clue as to why we landed so far up here. Unfortunately, it has no base; it’s just floating in the sky. That’s just my luck. What could we possibly need to be up here for?

That’s when I notice the arena.

What’s an arena doing all the way up here? I reach for my pocket console to summon my Arwing to get a closer look, but the radar shows it isn’t anywhere in the vicinity. Every hair on my body stands up at once. This can’t be a mission. We’ve been stranded somehow on a remote planet with a floating battle arena.

It has a disc shape, with giant marble columns dotting its circumference creating a sort of decorative barrier. It looks small from a distance, but I know better. Whoever designed it intended for it to look that way. There seems to be an abundance of overgrowth coating its surface. How long has it been up here?

Besides the lush vegetation its accumulated over time, it looks to be in pristine condition. It’s as if someone decided to tidy up before the guests arrived.

This isn’t a coincidence. Someone is expecting us.

“Where are we?” I ask Falco.

“Don’t know,” he replies, his wings folded up against his chest. “There’s others, though, and someone you won’t be happy to see.”

I look around, spotting other landmasses in the distance. How did I miss them until now? Each of them looks exactly like the one Falco and I are standing on. Not part of a mountain, just floating.

Falco is right. There are other beings here. I squint my eyes, and the figures standing on the other islands begin to take shape. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many different creatures in one place, yet many of them look familiar. I turn back to Falco.

“Do you remember falling asleep?” I ask.

“I don’t remember anything before waking up and finding you and Wolf,” he replies, still maintaining his usual indifferent mood. Something to his right catches his attention, and he nods in its direction. “Speaking of undesirables.”

As if on cue, Wolf appears, the usual menace etched across his face. This must be his doing. He scratches underneath his chin as he stops in front of us. The jerk only has one eye, but he makes up for it by embedding as much icy, murderous intent into his remaining one. He must notice how confused I am because he chuckles to himself.

“Ah, you’ve decided to join us, Fox,” he says. “I was going to let you sleep a little longer. It isn’t as if you’ll be needed any time soon.”

If I act now, I can catch him off guard by using my Illusion attack to knock him off balance. I take my stance, ready to act, when Falco places his wing on my shoulder.

“I would wait to do that if I were you,” he says.

“Listen to the bird,” Wolf says. “Don’t get too cocky, Star Fox.”

I clench my fists but decide to loosen my stance. Why is he here, where is the rest of his team, and why is Falco so calm about it?

“Where’s the rest of your crew?” I ask before glancing at Falco. “Or ours for that matter?”

Wolf closes his eye and shakes his head, still chuckling.

“Fool,” he says. “You really don’t know why we’re here, do you?”

I straighten my stance, unclenching my fists. I scratch between my ears again. Why should I know why we’re stuck in the sky with a gigantic, floating battle stage?

“What are you talking about?” I ask.

Wolf tilts his head to the side and sighs.

“We’ve done this dance time and time again,” he says. “Of all people, you should remember. You should know why we’ve been brought here.”

Okay, so Wolf has officially lost it. He hasn’t always been a beacon of mental well-being, but he’s speaking nonsense. I’d remember if I’d been in a situation like this before. Being kidnapped and brought to an arena against your will? It reeks of space piracy.

“You’re not making any sense!” I say to him. “Just tell me why the three of us are here.”

Wolf straightens up his back, dropping his claws to his side. His tail sways behind him as he seems to consider what to say next.

“We’re here to fight,” he responds. “You didn’t fall asleep, Fox. None of us did. We were brought here.”

He turns to face the arena, pointing one hooked claw up towards the sky.

“By them,” he says.

I look up to where his claw is pointing and spot two large white gloves suspended in the air. The one on the right’s fingers move as if it’s stroking a kitten, while the one on the left jerks around erratically. It looks like it’s impatiently trying to catch something and crush it.

“I think I remember now,” Falco steps forward, joining Wolf and I as we gaze at the white gloves. “I’ve fought those things countless times. I thought it was just a dream.”

An image enters my mind. I see myself fighting against one of them on a stage surrounded by darkness. I’m using all of my attacks against it, and it has a large arsenal of its own. It can shoot lasers from its fingertips, fly around at incredible speeds, and slap anyone off of the stage to their doom.

I stroke the hairs of my chin. Don’t those two hands have names? Yes, I remember now.

“The Master Hand,” I say. “That’s what the one on the right is called. The other one is the Crazy Hand, its lunatic twin brother.”

My battles with Master Hand begin to play out like movies. Sometimes, he’d summon the Crazy Hand to help out if I was beating him too fast. Crazy Hand isn’t like his brother. His fighting style is unhinged and disjointed, though it’s difficult to determine what counts as “normal” when fighting a pair of large white gloves.

We’re back again, but why? Why are we always brought back?

“Who keeps doing this?” I ask. “Bringing us back to fight?”

Wolf grunts then turns his back to us.

“Now you seem to know the right questions to ask,” he says. He nods towards Master Hand and Crazy Hand. “Why don’t you try asking one of them?”

I know I won’t get any answers from those stupid, deranged gloves, and I’m not going to fight for their amusement again. I want a reason for all of this. I quickly scan my surroundings for a way to get to the arena. As if sensing my thoughts, the island we’re standing on starts to move. We’re heading towards the battle stage now.

“Looks like you’re about to get your chance,” Falco says.

As we approach the arena, I notice what looks like black ribbons falling from the sky. As they near the floor of the battle stage, they start to swirl around a small globe of light. Soon, the ribbons of black energy completely engulf the globe until they take on the shape of what looks like a small child.

A child comes to mind because that’s the closest thing I can link it to. After all, it doesn’t act like any child I’ve ever seen. For one, it’s standing completely still, patiently waiting for us to get closer to it. Talk about unnecessarily creepy!

As if aware we can see it now, it raises a hand towards the sky, and the islands stop moving. If we were to step off of the landmasses, we’d be able to jump down into the arena without a problem. Maybe that weird thing will tell us why we have to fight, if it can even talk.

“Welcome warriors,” it speaks in a quiet, yet unsettling tone of voice. Imagine an adult male trying to sound like a child but speaking in half-whispers as if he’s afraid of you. The hairs on my body stand up again.

The figure moves its head around, surveying the countless number of creatures on the outer rim of the arena. It spreads its “arms” out and bows.

“I would like to welcome you to the Tournament of Power,” it says. “Many of you are veterans, while the rest of you are newcomers. Regardless of how much experience you have, this time it’s a little different.”

“Different?” I say out loud. I can hear murmurs from the other individuals now that we’re closer. They must be thinking the same thing I am. That must mean they’re also oblivious as to why we’ve been called to fight again.

Creepy demon kid isn’t phased by this and continues its speech.

“In this tournament, you will all be fighting each other all at once,” it says. “There will only be one round. The rules are simple. If you are knocked off of the battlefield, you lose and will be transported back to your home world. No killing is allowed, weapons can be utilized, and as before items will fall from the sky. Whether they help or hinder you, I cannot say.”

It lowers its arms, returning to the stance it had before. It actually looks less creepy this way. The warm, welcoming pose doesn’t suit it. It once again looks around at all of the fighters before speaking again.

“If all warriors from your dimension are defeated, that dimension and its warriors will be erased from existence.”

Gasps and cries ring out from the crowd as people begin to protest. I can hear swords being drawn, their blades ringing against the commotion. Are they about to fight whatever this thing is? Even though it’s small, I get a sense that it wouldn’t be wise to try to fight it. It raises one of its hands again, as if signaling everyone to be quiet.

“This is the final battle. Everything has been leading up to this.”

It turns to face the sky.

“As you can see,” it says. “In ten minutes, it will be mid-day. That is when the tournament will begin. If you are not on the arena in ten minutes, you will count as being knocked out and return to your dimension to await your fate.”

I clench my fists again. Ten minutes? We don’t have much time, and we have even fewer options. According to that thing, we can’t escape. We have to fight, and losing means our entire dimension gets destroyed.

“Still want to talk it out?” Falco asks.

I clutch the handle of my blaster, only now realizing it’s there. All of the equipment I normally have when I’m summoned to fight is here. I flex my muscles, shivering with anger. I don’t want to be responsible for destroying entire dimensions, but that thing is giving us no choice. Just like the deranged child it resembles, it’s going to watch us wipe each other out for its own amusement.

I start to walk towards the edge of our island, and the other two follow suit. Looks like I’ll be needing Wolf’s help after all.

“We’re heading in,” I say.

10 minutes until the tournament begins.

My Co-Worker Found Her Stimulus Check But Couldn’t Find Dial Soap?

So if you read my last post, I work with a funky rhinoceros named Sondra. I told her she smelled like “Let my people go!” and she went to HR.

The mediation was scheduled at some random office building, one of the ones that people just rent out. Sondra arrived just before I did, and how did I know this? Because the receptionist had car air-fresheners attached to her personal fan and had it oscillating.

In my mind, I was thinking, “This literal heifer.”

The mediator booked a large conference room, and I sighed in relief. Maybe I wouldn’t have to sit too close to her and risk passing out. Apparently, my words from yesterday didn’t stick with Sondra, and I wasn’t sure if this meeting would make a difference either.

The conference room had a long, mahogany table with twenty chairs surrounding it. As I entered, Sondra had her back to me, while an older woman with bushy blonde hair and runny mascara sat directly across from her.

They were sitting at the far end, and there was an open seat at the head of the table. Naturally, I walked my ass right over to the other side of the room and took my seat as far away from them as possible.

“Why ya sittin’ all the way over there?” asked the lady. She had a thick southern accent with a smoker’s baritone. “Why don’t ya come join us?”

“I’m an advocate of respecting people’s personal space,” I said, smiling as sweetly as possible, but the lady wasn’t having it.

“Listen, if you want me to tell your boss you didn’t cooperate, that’s fine,” she said. “We can just cancel the meeting now.”

“Okay, fine,” I ambled back to their side of the room and seated myself between them at the head of the table.

“Okay, lovely,” said the lady. “My name is Janice Freeman, and I’m here to help y’all sort out a little incident that happened at y’alls workplace. The purpose of this meeting is to reach a mutual compromise. I understand y’all won’t be best friends when you leave here, but we need to get y’all to work together as best as you can.”

Sondra nodded intently, and I tried to smile but was too focused on remembering to breathe through my mouth.

“So yesterday,” Janice spread her hands out like she was preparing to show us a poster board, “You two had a little disagreement where one of you said something a little impolite to the other. I’m going to start with Sondra, and I ask that you, Solomon, please let her finish before it’s your turn to speak.”

I nodded, wanting so badly to roll my eyes. Of course, she was going to let Sondra speak first. Here we go.

“Well…you see…um,” Sondra always speaks in this low, half-whisper. It’s like she’s afraid to raise her voice, which is perfect for this scenario so she can sell herself as the victim. “I had just found my stimulus check and was preparing to take a lunch break. I was just s-s-sitting at my desk, and um…he came up to me. H-h-he was so…angry.”

She wiped at her eyes knowing good and well she didn’t have any tears. God, I knew she was going to be dramatic with HR. She’s probably been waiting for weeks to pull this act out of her funky ass.

Janice nodded and looked concerned, hanging on Sondra’s every syllable. Yup, I was without a doubt going to be reprimanded for this. I don’t even know why they bothered to call me here in the first place.

“H-he said I smelled like…medieval times, and…and everyone just stared at me,” Sondra’s voice started to do that stupid shaking thing when she’s fake crying. I’ve seen her do it when she wanted to get sent home for the day. “I f-f-felt so ashamed r-r-ridiculed. I don’t f-feel like I can show my face at the office anymore.”

She buried her face in her hands and started sobbing quietly, but I knew it was all an act. Still, it wouldn’t make much of a difference. I just couldn’t believe she was really sitting here putting on a performance. I shook my head and chuckled.

“I hope you don’t think that’s funny,” said Janice. “Solomon, why don’t you tell us what happened and why you said what you said.”

I straightened up in my chair, refusing to look in Sondra’s direction.

“Well first, Ms. Freeman, I did not say she smelled like medieval times,” I began. “I said she smelled like Biblical times, very reminiscent of the aroma left behind by lamb sacrifices.”

Janice huffed and clenched her jaw. “Oh, so you’re a funny man, huh? You didn’t think what you said might hurt somebody’s feelings?”

“Ms. Freeman, we are both adults,” I said. “We work in an environment where we’re required to communicate with angry, vengeful spirits who say and do much worse. I’ll admit I could have been a little nicer, but she does smell, and it’s interfering with my concentration at work.”

At this, Sondra slammed her hands down on the table, shot up from her chair, and flew out of the conference room. Her sobs echoed down the hallway as she ran.

“Sondra, wait!” Janice ran after her, and I sat alone for a few minutes, still breathing through my mouth because it still wasn’t safe yet.

I was livid! You mean to tell me she FOUND her stimulus check the other day but couldn’t STIMULATE herself to take a bath? She bought herself lunch but couldn’t spend three dollars at the corner store for some body wash? Disgraceful!

I’m not done with that sentient funk cloud. Mark my words. Somebody is going to do something about this.

What is the Prophecy of Austyria?

All who worship the Goddess of Light know of the Prophecy, but few understand its true meaning.

The Covenant of Aeris Fata is the religion practiced in most of Heran, the continent where Devona kingdom is located. The Prophecy was first mentioned about a century ago, though there is continuous debate on its accuracy.

Below, we will attempt to break down the Prophecy and its true meaning. Ultimately, you may end up drawing your own conclusions, and that’s fine.

What Does It Say?

Pulled from holy scripts, the exact wording of the Prophecy is as follows:

United will the nations be through Darkness

The Sun will twist the earth, the earth will twist the Sun

From a throne in the Heavens an Angel will appear

Awaiting his challenge by the world’s defenses

He will raise his hand and bring about the world’s end

Through salvation, he will clash and forgive

For this is the price we must pay for neglecting our brethren

Luminous 4: 5-12

Who Does It Refer To?

The Prophecy makes clear mention of an Angel and “nations.” It’s not clear which nations it’s referring to, but the Angel is the most prominent figure.

The text states that the Angel will bring about the world’s end, which many interpret as meaning its complete destruction. As for the unifying of nations, relations between Devona and Eorum aren’t cooling off anytime soon. So, what is this Darkness, and how will it bring the nations together?

What Is the Timeline of Events?

There is considerable debate on when the Prophecy will be fulfilled. According to some scholars, the event has already passed with the disappearance of the Elves. Others say it could happen any day now.

What Can We Do to Stop It?

Based on the text, there’s not much that can be done to prevent these events from playing out. However, certain members of the clergy have called the royal family’s attention to to a specific line.

“Awaiting his challenge by the world’s defenses”

What are the world’s defenses, and how will they challenge the Angel? Does the rest of the text indicate they’ll lose? Many look to that line as hope that the Prophecy can be averted in some way, but there’s no clear evidence yet.

Adventure, mysteries, and prophecies await in the world of Austyria. As you continue on your travels, remember to stay well-equipped and well-informed. To win is to have a plan.