Within the Games: Part Two
“AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!” Marine was hurling down from the sky at an immense speed. Suddenly, she stopped abruptly when she landed flat on her stomach.
“Ouch! Wait a minute,” Marine said as she looked puzzlingly around her. “Where am I?”
She got up and walked around slowly. She saw nothing but green grass and blue sky for miles around. She saw a mountainous landscape. She then looked up and saw a huge tree with some mushrooms attached on its sides.
AAA was sitting in his recliner weeping. “Oh, what have I done? WHAT HAVE I DONE???? I could have stopped her! Now she’s probably lost in cyberspace and will never return! Even though I didn’t know her that well, I’ll still miss her! I’ll never forgive myself!!!!! I’M THE WORST BLUMAROO ALIVE!!!!” cried AAA.
“Hello? Hello? Can anybody hear me?” Marine yelled.
AAA stopped sobbing. “I can still hear her sweet little voice! But where is it coming from?”
He frantically looked around for Marine. He looked under his recliner, under his desk, even behind his pinball machine. He was so desperate to find her, he was willing to look anywhere, even in things as small as his toolbox.
“Hello? Anyone?” Marine yelled once more.
AAA stopped searching and started scratching his head.
“Okay, now it’s getting weird...” said AAA.
He still had no idea where Marine was. Well, you’re most likely thinking that Marine was literally in Shenkuu Warrior 2, right? If you were, then congratulations, genius! Marine was in Shenkuu Warrior 2, but AAA doesn’t know that, now does he? For all he knows, Marine’s voice was coming from the beyond of the beyonds!
“Anyone there? Can anybody hear me?” Marine yelled.
“I think I’m going insane! Next up is the nuthouse!”
AAA was rubbing his forehead, having ideas of himself in a padded room, wearing a strait jacket, babbling like a maniac. He shivered at the thought, but he was also shivering at the thought of Marine lost in cyberspace.
“HELLO?!?!?!?!?!?!?” Marine screamed.
“Oh, Fyora’s slippers, make it stop!” AAA shouted.
AAA was about to start crying again. He was too young to get his very own asylum. He was having horrid nightmares of himself laughing and screaming with insanity.
“AAA? Is that you?”
“Huh? What? Marine?” AAA looked around and finally walked towards the Cyber-Port 2000. He looked at the screen and saw Marine walking around the landscape.
“Marine? Can you hear me?” AAA asked as he was talking into the microphone attached to the machine.
“Yeah, I can hear you, but I can’t see you!” she replied.
“Oh! Just a minute!” AAA pressed a blinking orange button that said “VIEW”.
“How about now? Can you see me?”
“Whoa! You’re in the sky,” Marine exclaimed when she looked up into the sky. “Your head is gigantic! Where am I? Why is everything so pixelly, and-,” Marine looked down. “*gasp* What happened to my clothes? I’m wearing a... a ninja suit!!!! OH MY GOSH!!! I liked my clothes better! My khakis! My rainbow socks! My sweatband! My Snowflake Shirt! My.... my....,” She felt around her neck.
“MY COLLAR!!! MY BLACK JEWEL ENCRUSTED COLLAR!!!”
Marine always wore a black jewel encrusted collar ever since she was a wee little Zafara. She always wore it for good luck for whatever she did. Whenever she took it off, she would act really different. She would be drowsy, cranky, irritated easily. But due to the fact this collar disappeared right off of her neck, she started to freak out and almost cry.
“Okay then... Well anyway, apparently you’re in Shenkuu Warrior 2,” said AAA.
Marine didn’t know if she was excited or anxious. She was feeling around her neck to see if it was invisible or if it was hiding behind her neck. Oh sure, she loved the game, but she didn’t know what it was like when you were LITERALLY in the game.
“Yep, I guess my invention DOES work after all,” AAA said quietly.
“Well, how do I play?”
“You see the grappling hook around your waist?”
“Yeah. And I also have a Fir named Mr. Christmas. What’s your point?”
See what I mean by cranky and easily irritated? You know, it’s pretty weird what good luck charms can do to you when you are without them...
“Try to throw it up to one of those mushrooms! Like in the game!”
“Okay, here it goes!” Marine threw the hook to a mushroom and was able to cling it to the ledge. She flew up into the sky at great speed!
“Now throw it at another one!” shouted AAA.
“Wait, what? Oh!” She threw the hook again at another mushroom. It hung on.
“Just be careful!” AAA said.
“When does this game end?” yelled Marine as she was flying up in the air.
“When you win this game,” answered AAA.
“How long will that take?” Marine asked as she clung on to another mushroom.
“That’s all up to you, Marine! This is your game!”
“I remember! You’re supposed to reach a certain altitude! I think on this level it’s about 30,000 feet! I’m almost there! What’s my altitude now, AAA?”
“25,000 feet! I can see the finish! You’re almost there!”
“I see it too! I got it! I got it! Yes!” Marine hung on to the finishing mushroom. She made it!
“YAY! I did it!” Marine said as she reached the finish.
“Good job! Just walk to the left at the rocky hillside. This time, cling on to the bridges. The platforms will get smaller, you know!”
“I got it! I got it!”
Marine began her game. She threw the hook at a bridge and she flew up the rocky cliff. She threw her hook at another one. And another one. And yet another one.
She was on a roll for a while, until...
“Oh no!!! No!!!!! NOOOOO!!!!!!” Marine’s hook slipped off of the small bridge and she was plummeting down, down, down, down to the start.
“AHHHHHH!!!!!!” She was falling faster and faster from the sky and abruptly landed on the ground like when she first got within the game.
Well, there’s the luck part when it came to that collar of hers.
“Marine! Are you alright?” AAA asked from his office.
She slowly stood up and massaged her shoulders.
“Yeah. I mean... yeah.”
“Are you sure?”
“Yeah, I’m... I’m fine.”
“Um, okay... let’s go!”
Marine started flying like she did before. She was quickly holding on to platforms one by one. She was flying almost at the speed of sound.
“Almost there! How much altitude do I need?”
“I think almost 60,000! You’re at 50,000! Just a few more platforms and you’re there!” answered AAA.
Marine could see the finish above her. She raced up towards it. She was almost there and...
“Yes! Two down, one to go!” Marine cheered.
“Alright, Marine! Well done! This will be challenging, though. You’ll be going up the summit of the mountain. You know what that means! Freezing temperature. 100,000 feet altitude. Platforms that disappear before your very eyes.”
Marine walked to the left of the mountain where there was an opening to grab onto ledges to fly. She was beginning to shiver as she was walking there. She could see her white breath that almost froze in midair.
“Ready?” asked AAA.
She looked up and saw the numerous ledges with cloths dangling across them. She saw the old bridge-like ledges with dirty brown cloths. She knew that those ledges could make her slip up and ruin the game. 100,000 feet. She couldn’t screw this up now. That could lead to a broken bone, or worse...
“Yeah... I’m ready!”
She threw her hook into the air. It flew higher and higher until it finally clung on to a good ledge.
Marine was catapulted up to the freezing wind. She took in her surroundings. She saw the freezing snow. The icy ledges. And then she saw...
A kite was just what she needed! She could fly up at least twice as higher than she could with a grappling hook!
She threw it up to the ledge and the kite flew down. She caught it with her right hand and got a great tailwind.
And man, did that Zafara fly!
“Wheee!!! This is fun! What’s my altitude, AAA?”
“50,000!” replied AAA.
“Okay, halfway there!”
She flew higher and higher. She seemed to get luckier and luckier when it came to kites. It was then when she started to wonder about her collar and how lucky it really was. Not like she was going to throw it away or anything, but it was stylish! Even a tom-boy wouldn’t throw away their most stylish accessory!
She was now at an altitude of 80,000. She was almost there!
“Just a couple more ledges, Marine!” AAA replied excitedly.
“Yeah! I can see the finish!”
She hung on to one more ledge, and then...
“YEAH!!!!! I WON!!!!”
Marine made it! She won the whole game!!!!
“Yay, Marine! You did it!” AAA cheered excitedly.
“Great job, Marine!” AAA shouted. With a whirr of noises and lights, Marine returned with sweat on her face and had her regular clothes on.
Marine felt around her neck and felt her collar where it was before.
“MY COLLAR!!! OH HOW I MISSED YOU!!!”
She embraced the accessory around her neck and kissed the gold tag hanging from it.
AAA stared at Marine with an odd look on his face. And who could blame him? A dancing Zafara kissing the tag on her collar is not exactly what you call “normal”.
“What? Oh! Uh... so what’s next?” asked Marine.
She snapped out of her collar-loving.
“Well, I did think of a good idea if you HONESTLY want to do this again!”
“Really? And what may that be?” Marine asked.
“Maybe we could test out some of the other games in the Game Room! We could try out the most popular games! If you want, we could even try some classics! We can do millions of games with this machine! You and me! What do you say?”
Marine paced around the floor for a moment until she finally said: “I say, let the games begin!”
To be continued...