Co-written with MeliMush! Sometimes, when all hope is lost, we run away from all the sorrow, from all the pain. But that's when when you start to realize... There's still hope. And you can find it almost anywhere or from anyone...
Happy 10th anniversary, From Coward to Hero!
Back when I was 12 years old, I co-wrote a Cave Story fanfiction with a fellow Cave Story fan through Fanfiction dot net DMs. Back and forth, we wrote about a paragraph each time, although I clearly remember Lunara wrote more than me and was a lot faster (I was and still am a fanfic noobie...)
It was originally hosted on Fanfiction dot net as well as DeviantArt, but was later removed. I still had all the records of DMs we sent each other though, and like 5 years back I compiled about all of it into the text file as you see below. Sadly, the final epilogue that Lunara wrote was not saved, but you can imagine everyone lived happily ever after. I have also gotten permission from her 10 years later to post it mostly in full again. Hm, it's been 10 years already... And I hope you enjoy (?)
You can feel free to check out my co-author's DeviantArt here!
Please contact me if you need content warnings for this fanfic. I can't bring myself to read this anymore, but if you need it I'll do it. For you. It also contains romantic elements for Quote and Curly. Also some OCs. None of this reflects the person I am today... I think. Yeah. Enjoy (?) (?)
When Quote sat on the Baby dragon, he knew he'd made a mistake.
But there was no choice to go back. He looked back at the island, the last time he'd ever see it again.
"It's okay, your mission has been finished," Kazuma spoke,
"You are no longer a hero."
Quote nodded. He had done his best. Whatever happens to the island was no longer his problem.
It was a cowardly move, to escape the island, but what was the point of risking his life for nothing?
His friends were gone, memories missing, what was the point?
The boy gazed at the moon, wondering what would happen next. . .
Misery had seen them leave, feeling guilt. She was forced to do the bidding of whomever wore the Demon Crown. That boy was her last hope for the curse to be broken. But... wasn't there a girl with him? She hadn't seen that blonde robot girl since the incident with the Core...
Getting an idea of what happened, she teleported herself to the Core room, immediately getting drenched in water. She created a bubble around her to keep dry, and began to search the robot corpses for the bright blonde hair of... Curly Brace, was it?
Misery looked around the room. There weren't any other blond robots. She carried the girl robot and teleported to the throne room. Misery took a closer look at Curly. There were no cuts on her face, no injuries, nothing.
It looked like she fought the Core without even a scratch.
Misery took out a book about robots from the surface. The page on reviving a drowned robot read like this:
When a robot drowns, it shuts down to avoid any loss of data.
However, if it is not waken up within a month, all data and memory will be lost.
To wake a drowned robot, locate a plug at the foot.
Unplug it, and the water will come out.
The robot will wake up after a few minutes.
"That shouldn't be so hard. . ."
She suddenly had a thought. This thought became an idea, and the blue-haired woman smirked, chuckling darkly. This will work out perfect... she thought, disappearing from the Core along with the flooded female robot. She would work as a fine slave for my master... if I can fix her, that is...
Thoughts and scenarios passed through Misery's mind like traffic on a highway. She felt both compelled and hesitant to reveal the robot to the Doctor. She felt no heed to leave her to rot in the water...
In the end, She decided to present the robot to the Doctor. But first, she needed to be drained.
"Huh? Where am I?"
"Hello!" Greeted Misery, "You must be Curly Brace, yes? My lord wants to see you."
Curly recognized the witch at a glance.
"Y-you! You took my children! Are they okay?"
Misery nodded, but the truth was they had been subjects of the red flowers long ago.
She needed a bribe to make sure the robot would listen the their commands.
"The mimiga children are fine. If you want them back you should talk to the Doctor."
". . . I don't believe you one bit," Curly mumbled.
"Oh, you'll see. Come with me."
Curly Brace hesitated. What could come of this? What would happen? She had a gut feeling that this would not turn up well... not at all... Her blue eyes loked down at her feet for a few moments before she finally gave in to the offer.
"Fine..." She whispered, and followed Misery. "But if those children aren't safe, I'll rip you limb from limb!"
Misery felt no regret. She just waved her staff, and the two females appeared at the Doctor's table. The man was leaning over the large limestone table, his hands working impatiently at a few red flowers, some crystals, and other materials that the robot couldn't identify.
"Misery" The Doctor huffed without raising his head to meet her gaze. "who is that with you?"
The blue haired woman smirked lightly. "Her name is Curly Brace. She is one of the robots tht tried to stop our plans. The other one, that boy you saw at the warehouse, has fled to the mountains, so he will no longer be a problem."
"That's good news, Misery."
"Wait-WHAT?" Curly screeched, suddenly running away from Misery. The which sighed, and the ball on her wand glowed blue, and the blonde android froze, and glowed in the same hue.
"You're not going anywhere, soldier from the surface." Misery scowled, throwing Curly toward her. Curly fell on her face in the process, and she simply lay there, feeling helpless.
How could you? She thought. You left me in that flooded room to die... Anger rose up, replacing the sadness. You only cared for yourself! You coward! Sniveling coward! She closed her eyes tightly, trying to calm herself down. She was saved, and she should be grateful, happy even, but that happy feeling was never felt since she saw her partner enter the room to the exit of the Labyrinth. He's gone now, and she only felt anger toward him now.
So that was it.
The two robots that wanted to save the island were done in.
I'm a prisoner of the villains, and Quote is gone.
Who was going to save the mimigas now?
The Doctor chuckled.
"So, there are no one else to stop me now. The mimigas are almost done with the red flowers. I still have some work to do, though. Curly. I suspect you will help me, yes?"
". . . I guess,"
"Perfect. Now, go! I have to do more experiments,"
Misery transported the robot the the Plantation, where she was met with a shocking scene.
The mimigas! They were growing red flowers without even a second thought.
Curly walked over to one of the farmers.
"Hello, why are you growing such things?"
"It's for the upcoming robot invasion! We will grow strong and beat them with these flowers!"
Robot invasion. . .? There was no such thing like that happening.
"Who told you about an invasion?"
"The doctor, of course! What a kind and thoughtful man, helping us overcome the upcoming war."
So, the doctor was making them grow the flowers. Probably to take over the world.
When she tried talking to the others, they either ignored her or said basically the same thing as that other Mimiga did. The Doctor? Thoughtful? Her head spun. This was getting extremely confusing...
"Hey! You!" Curly turned around, and saw yet another Mimiga. But this one was... different. In some way... It was female, wore a blue sweater, and strange... she had an X-shaped scar on the bridge of her muzzle. She held a plow in her paws. "You think this isn't right, don't you?" She gestured toward the red flowers that grew everywhere. "It isn't right. My name is Sue. What's yours?"
Sue? How did that name...? "Sue...? D...do you know another..." She whispered the next word. "Robot?"
Sue thought for a moment, then nodded. "Yeah! I know him! That black-haired kid?" Curly nodded furiously. "Where is he?"
"He ran away! He was a coward! Flew off the Island on a sky dragon!"
If Sue could pale, her face would've done so. "S...sky dragon...? My brother! My brother ran off the Island too!"
"I should've known! My brother is a huge coward!"
Sue started to cry, but she rubbed the tears away.
Curly started to speak.
"Hey, don't cry. I promise we'll find them again. In the meantime, we need to work together.
Tell me why you're here, okay?"
"I-I'm trying to look for my mom. She said that she was hiding around here, but I don't know where."
"Have you checked the walls?"
"I've hidden a few things in walls, and no one ever finds them," Curly proudly declared.
"Huh. Well, there's this one random hole in the ground. Nothing's in it, but there's a weird coloured block on the side. Do you think. . .?"
"That's what we need! Tell me where it is!"
Sue pointed to a spot a few steps away.
Curly jumped into the shallow pit. She motioned for the bunny to give her the plow.
"Okay. . ." Curly whispered, "One, two, three!"
She struck the strange block with the plow. It collapsed with a hitch.
"There, see?" The blonde android said with a grin. Sue scurried over to the hole Curly had created, looked at it for a moment, then leaped into the hole.
Meanwhile, one of the many Drolls was staring at the two, their beady black eyes sending chills up Curly's spine. Curly looked from Sue to the strange humanoid creature behind them, then quickly grabbed Sue.
"H-hey! What are you-?"
"SHHH!" Curly hissed, ripping her from the hole and holding her tightly, back toward the Droll. "People are watching us!" She whispered. Sue looked behind them and shreiked.
"Huh?" Curly turned around.
The next thing Curly knew, she was lying on the ground, dazed. She was losing consciousness quickly, and she saw Sue being dragged away by the Droll. The Mimiga squirmed, screaming something Curly couldn't understand.
"YROTS EVAC!" Sue screamed to Curly, all while squirming, trying to break out of the Droll's tight grip. "THE PASSWORD IS YROTS EVAC! YROTS EVAC, CURLY!" Sue soon disappeared into a room, and Curly fell unconscious...
"Over there seems like a good idea," Kazuma added.
The boy nodded in approval.
To survive any upcoming invasions, the two would need a hiding place. Not too secretive, but not too noticeable either.
The baby dragon touched down near the base of a small mountain, not too far away from the island. The first thing they did was find a small shelter.
A natural roof carved from the mountains was a good choice, but it was already occupied.
"Hello, can we share this shelter?" Kazuma asked.
A small family, consisting of a father and three children, reluctantly agreed.
It seemed that they noticed the boy's antennas.
"K... killer robot!" one of the children, a young boy whispered. He hid behind his dad, and whimpered in fright.
"You can stay..." The father whispered, pointing at Kazuma with approval. "But that... that robot can get out of here!"
The robot flinched. Was there something wrong with him? Did he do something wrong without knowing it? He had no clue, but having noplace to stay anymore made his stomach flip-if he even had one...
"There's nothing wrong with this robot, sir." Kazuma murmured, placing a hand on the robot boy's shoulder. "He won't hurt you guys."
He scowled sliently. He hated being called a robot. He had feelings too!
"Well, I guess if it's okay with you three,"
The children reluctantly nodded in approval.
"...Alright, you can stay here. My name is Satou. These three are my children. Kanna, Jougo, and Tamaki."
"My name is Kazuma." the green-haired man murmured, looking over to the robot boy. "And that's..." He hesitated. "What's your name?"
His eyes widened. He had no name. At least he thought he didn't...
"Hey..." Satou walked over to the robot, and looked at the writing on the metal plate of his cap. "That's Japanese writing. It says... Curly Brace on it. And it also says Quote." He looked over to Kazuma. "Which one is his name?"
His eyes widened. It said Curly Brace on his hat? A wave of sadness washed over him, and he ripped the cap from his head. staring at the writing, his hands shaking.
You left her there. She's dead. All because of you.
"Hey... Are you alright?" Tamaki, the young girl murmured. He didn't notice the tears that streamed down his face. The only thing he could see was Curly. Dead, flooded, her name making a wall of red text in his vision.
"Hey! Snap out of it!" Kanna yelled
Quote jerked his head up. His vision was no longer covered in red, but he still felt ashamed.
"You finally came to your senses," Tamaki whispered, "you looked really dazed for a moment there,"
Quote put the cap back on his head.
He regretted leaving Curly to die, but it was something he had to live with.
"I think it's about time to sleep," Satou announced,
"You two," He pointed at Kazuma and Quote, "You can sleep wherever you'd like, as long as it's not outside,"
The children laughed at their father's joke.
The other two just kept silent.
He couldn't sleep.
He lay awake, still trembling from the previous nightmare he had. Moonlight from a window shone its cold light through the panes of glass and onto his face, making the tears in his eyes clearly visible. He quickly gridded his teeth and jerked his hands across his eyes, violently wiping the tears away.
He sat up, looking around. He slept on the floor with a few warm blankets, Kazuma across the room, sound asleep. He slowly stood, still having one of the blankets draped on his shoulders, and walked out the door, into the night.
The sky was fairly clear, a cold, crisp wind blew and made his black hair drift slightly. He looked up at the mountains relatively close to the shelter he resided in. Then at the stars; the small pin-points of white light facinated the robot, this being the second time he ever saw the sky during the night (as from what he remembers anyway), it made him feel like he wanted to grab one right from the black sky.
His moment of peace was cut short by a loud trampling in the woods nearby, then an animalistic roar.
He turned around.
There was a mimiga. An enraged mimiga.
Where was his gun? He needed a gun, or else he wasn't going to make it. He fumbled around for his Polar Star, but it was too late. The mimiga pounced on him. It rose its arm up, its claws sharp. . .
"Go away!" Kanna shouted. He threw a rock at the mimiga, which only angered it more.
It ran after the small child with an intent to kill. Quote took out his Polar Star, raised it at the mimiga, and took fire. It was shot to death within seconds.
In agony, the Mimiga slowly shrank, until a bloodied corpse of a once adorable Mimiga-
That enraged Mimiga was Jack.
He just killed Jack!
"What's wrong?" Kanna asked, seeing Quote's horrified expression. "Quote, is it? We-what are you doing? HEY!" The robot had kneeled beside Jack, expression darkened. A tear or two slipped from his eyes and down his cheeks. He looked to the little girl and spoke in a soft voice.
"This is a Mimiga. They are peaceful creatures, until... until you feed them a red flower. They go into a blind rage, unable to control themselves. Before they die, they turn to normal..." he fell silent once more.
Kanna started to weep.
"M-my mama... She got killed by one of them."
Quote was still silent, but he was listening carefully now.
"Mama was attacked by one of those bunnies. She fought hard, and we tried to help her too.
In the end, though, she..."
The boy wiped away his tears.
"Well," Kanna whispered, "I think we know what happened next. Right now, we need to go tell my dad what happened,"
Quote stared at Kanna as he ran inside. His body felt heavy as he tried to stand, and a sudden pain made him fall back over. He ripped his hand from his side, and saw a black substance on it. Confused, he lifted his shirt, and nearly fell over in shock.
A claw-mark was dug into his metal flesh. He was remarkably shocked he didn't notice before. It was somewhat a shallow cut, but the pain made him shudder.
"Hey, what-?" Satou saw the Mimiga, then Quote, who was shivering. "Hey, are you alright?" He saw the injury, and helped Quote find his balance.
Quote however fell back over after a few wobbling steps, and found no strength to get up.
Curly woke up in a dark cave.
There was only one other mimiga there. A chubby one.
"Hey, mimiga! Can you tell me where I am?"
The bunny stood up, "I have a name, you know, the name's Mahin, and you're in the Plantation Jail.
We hope you enjoy your stay!"
"No need to be sarcastic. Name's Curly. Is there any way to get out of here?"
Mahin smiled. He pointed to a small gap in the wall.
"There. I'd be out of here, but I can't fit. Sad, isn't it?"
She crawled through the gap, but before she left she asked a question.
"Do you know a red hatted robot?"
"Yes I do! A fine hero, I've heard."
Hero... Curly shook away the thought.
"Alright, just stay put. I'll get you out of there, Mahin,"
"No, no need." Mahin rumbles, gesturing to the jail's rations, bags of stale crackers. "I'll be fine. Besides, I'll just be thrown into this cell soon enough if I escape."
"...Okay..." Curly replied, jumping when the prison cells opened, revealing the two Drolls trom before, but Misery was with them.
"Get that girl out of there! She's with us! On our side!"
"What?" Mahin spluttered, staring at Curly. "You're helping the Doctor?" He knitted his eyebrows angrily. "I should've known..."
Sue stared at Curly in hatred. To think she wanted to be friends with that... that ROBOT!
Curly would've broke down crying if not for Misery grabbing her with a surprisingly gentle grasp and whisking her out of the prison. I don't want to help the Doctor! I'm on your side, Mimiga's! She screamed in her mind* I'll help you! ALL of you!
"What were you thinking?" Misery scolded, dragging Curly out of the prison.
"I-I was helping S-Sue-"
"SUE? That pitiful Mimiga with the blue sweater? The Doctor ordered you to grow the RED FLOWERS, not help the Mimiga escape! YOU FOOL!"
Curly felt a stinging pain well up in her head, and she let out a scream, falling to her knees.
"...And your punishnent..."
Curly found herself writhing on the ground, holding her head and screaming. "MAKE IT STOP! MAKE IT STOP!" She wailed, getting weaker and weaker.
"Is that you will only remember me, and our master."
Mimiga... Red flowers... Death...
Quote woke up with a jolt.
He found himself in a corner of the shelter.
"Oh, you're up!" Kanna motioned for his siblings to come over to the robot.
Jougo handed a bowl of soup to him, while Tamaki set down a cup of water at his side.
"What happened last night?" Tamaki asked.
"Tamaki, don't ask," Jougo interfered, "It's private,"
"Are you sure? Mister, may I...?"
Quote thought for a moment, then nodded.
It would probably be better if such an incident wasn't kept a secret.
"..." for a moment he hesitated. These children were rather young, the oldest being at least thirteen. But they had to get tge picture. They weren't safe anymore. "...Mimiga are peaceful creatures," he began. "Until you feed them a red flower."
"Like a rose? Roses are red..."
Roses are red? Quote thought.
"Violets are blue!" Tamaki joked.
"As I was saying..." And as the robot boy continued his story, he found himself telling the tale of his adventures, from waking up in that mysterious cave, to meeting the Mimiga from Mimiga Village, to the kidnapping of Toroko, to meeting Sue, Kazuma's younger sister, all the way to before he fled to this place with Kazuma. "After I finally found shelter in the Egg. 00 room, I noticed the egg was hatched. Then Kazuma came in. He told me that he was going to flee because... he feared he was to die. He offered me to go with him, and I obliged, because without Curly by my side, nothing felt right... I thought of Curly as I left on Kazuma's Sky Dragon with him, and I still feel heartbroken at the fact that I left her to die..."
After the story was told, both the family of four, and Kazuma were shocked, and sad. This boy that seemed almost emotionless was by now crying, thinking of only the blonde android. No other thoughts could be thought. However, a huge weight had been lifted because he told his story. Maybe it was for the better if he talked more...
After that, Satou told his children to go away.
He sat down beside Quote and started to speak.
"I know you're in a lot of pain right now.
My wife was killed by a enraged mimiga, and I could not save her,"
Quote remembered what Kanna had told him the night before, while Satou continued on.
"Now, I see that it wasn't the mimiga's fault.
I'm sure most of them don't have a choice whether they want to eat the red flower or not,"
"Yes," Quote added, "it's the only way for a mimiga to fight back,"
"Hey!" Kazuma had an idea," It's only been a few days since we came here, right?"
"Do you think it'd be safe to go back to the island and help the surviving mimigas?"
Quote shook his head. I'm not ready, he thought. "Give me some time, please..."
Kazuma seemed upset, but he nodded anyway. "Tell us when you want to go back, then."
The robot nodded.
When she came to, her head pounded, and she was in a dark room. Groaning, Curly sat up, trying to look around.
She saw light coming from a hole in the ground a couple dosen meters away, a ledge with two stories, and floating, blue mossy beast-things.
She whirled around, and shreiked in freight. The Core was right in front of her. She slowly backed away, being careful not to wake it up...
And then she tripped.
Letting out a cry, Curly fell backwards, and into the hole, falling strait down to the Doctor's table. She stumbled and fell down another hole, and right on top of Misery.
"Hey, robot! Get offa me!"
Strangely, Curly did as she was told.
She stood up immediately.
"Hey, what the...?"
"Oh, yeah," Misery added, "I think put a spell on you. What it is, I think you'll find out soon.
Now, go down to the Plantation and supervise the workers!"
The witch teleported Curly back to the Plantation.
Without a hitch, she walked around and inspected the mimigas' work.
"Hey, you! No lazing around! You, too! Don't just sit there!" She shouted,
but in her mind she thought of helping the mimigas escape. Why couldn't she stop herself?
She saw a Mimiga collapse in exhaustion. "Hey!" She yelled, helping it up. "Get to work!"
The Mimiga just stared at her, eyes half opened. "Who are you?"
"Why should you care? Get to work, or I'll make you!"
"I'm too old for this..." He muttered, shaking his head. He wore a torn brown vest, and had greyed fur all around. He slowly got up. "Making an old Mimiga like me work like this? Pah! It's mutiny! Mutiny I tell ya!"
Curly felt something in her mind snap. She grabbed the elderly Mimiga by the throat and dragged him toward the resting spot. "Fine." She hissed, opening the door and throwing him inside. "Go ahead and REST."
But the Mimiga didn't get up. He wasn't even breathing anymore.
I just killed him... Curly thought, staring at the body in shock. What's wrong with me?
A young girl shreiked and ran over to the dead Mimiga. Her fur uptop her head was in a ponytail, and she wore dirty, ragged clothes. The young girl sobbed and hugged the elder tight. She then looked up and glared at Curly with hatred. "YOU KILLED HIM!"
"I know I did." She replied coldly. "Now, why aren't you growing the red flowers like a good little girl?" She took a step forward.
"You can't tell me what to do!" The girl protested, staying by the body of her grandfather. "Go away!"
"My my, you really need to learn to FOLLOW ORDERS!" Curly grabbed the girl's arm and yanked her outside. "Get out there and WORK, stupid little girl!"
The young Mimiga was shaking on the ground, too scared to do anything.
I can't be this way! Curly thought wildly. But I can't control my words or my actions anymore!
This is a hell, she thought.
I really, truly want to help you, little mimiga.
But, this stupid curse...
Curly watched slowly as she forced the mimigas to work.
Even the younger ones, the elderly, and anyone who got in her way was picked up and thrown to the ground.
If you hadn't run away, this would've never happened, Curly thought bitterly.
I hope you're happy with what you've done.
As she continued to abuse the working Mimiga, thoughts of helping them began to fade; replaced with thoughts of death, killing anything in her sight. She tried so hard to get these thoughts out of her head.
But in the end she finally snapped. Drawing her Machibe Gun, the girl began to shoot the weak Mimiga, only leaving the strong and young alone. Blood spilled to the ground, bodies littered the scenery, and her giggles of deleight echoed in the air; red filling her vision.
Soon however, the colors faded, and Curly stared in horror at the Mimiga she just murdered. She frowned, eyes wide, then she crouched, dark giggles escaping from her throat.
"Heheh... Oh why did you have to do this? Heehee! It's so unfair! Hahaha! It's ALL YOUR FAULT!" She laughed uncontrollably, all while staring at her bloodied hands with dialated pupils. Her giggles soon subsided, and she looked up, hardly able to contain herself.
Why did you have to leave...?
The sun shone gently on everyone.
Quote was instructed to wake up the children.
"Wake up, everyone..."
Kanna sleepily shook his sister, Tamaki.
"I'm up, I'm up! I was already awake, you know!" Tamaki groaned.
The only person who didn't respond to Quote was Jougo.
He was still asleep, his face red.
Kanna reached over to touch his brother's forehead.
"I think he's sick,"
Concerned, Quote walked over to the children, and helped Jougo sit up. The little boy shivered, and started crying loudly, waking up Satou.
"What's wrong?" he asked. Seeing his son's face he quickly realized what was wrong. "Oh God... no... I can't let him die..." He grabbed Jougo, and stroked his back. The seven-year-old boy continued to cry.
Sighing, Satou spoke, "We've held refuge in this mountain for about a year now. My children never got vaccinated this year... They might all, including myself... we're gonna die..." He continued to give his son loving strokes.
He didn't respond.
Quote stared closer at Jougo, then pushed two fingers against the boy's neck; checking for a pulse.
It was very faint.
"Nnn..." Jougo shifted weakly, opening his eyes. "...momma...?" he whispered, staring ahead as though something was there. "Where are we going?"
"Jougo, no..." Satou pleaded as everyone surrounded him.
Jougo was struggling for breath, and closed his eyes. "I... love you daddy... Quote..." He opened his eyes, and they met with Quote's. "Momma has... something to show you..."
Quote suddenly felt another presence. Only he could see the image flashing before his eyes. He could see a beautiful brown-haired woman with deep green eyes and long hair step up.
"I'm Sakura, Satou's husband. You're Quote, am I correct?"
The robot nodded, still shocked this was happening.
"Listen, Quote. You need to go back. Before the Doctor kills us all. Your friend is a slave. A girl with long blonde hair-"
"Curly?!" Quote exclaimed, eyes remarkably huge. His chest felt like it would explode from of the burst of excitement that wraked his internal systems.
"Yes." Quote suddenly saw everything go black, and he felt his body fall back.
Darkness craddled him. But it was disturbed by giggles. Laughter whose voice was shockingly familliar.
The darkness became a wide, open field. Mimiga of all shapes and sizes were growing red flowers. This was becoming a nightmare within seconds, because the giggles became more forceful and scary sounding. Mimiga were suddenly missing limbs, their chests exploding, blood flew all over the place.
What shocked him the most was that not only were the Mimiga were getting ruthlessly slaughtered...
But it was Curly Brace doing the killing. Her face was filled with a mask of murderous insanity, her pupils the size of pin-points, the big goofy grin, giggling as blood splattered on her clothes, her hands, her face...
He wanted to get out of here. Now.
"Why?" The voice of his former friend echoed in his head. It was full of hurt, yet the giggles were still there. "You ruined me! You ran away! You left without me...
I'LL KILL YOU!!
AND THIS TIME...
YOU'LL BE BEATEN, NOT ME!"
He let out a scream of horror, and sat up, panting and shuddering.
"W-we need to go back," Quote stammered.
"What? Are you sure?" Kazuma asked, concerned.
Quote felt uneasy, with the thoughts of Curly still racing in his mind.
The mimigas needed help. The only person who could still do anything was him.
"...Yes. We must go back. Curly is still alive," Quote's expression darkened,
"But she's doing something horrible,"
"What? What is it?"
Quote shut his eyes and spoke, "Curly... She's killing innocent mimigas,"
He buried his face in his hands and sobbed.
Satou put a hand on the robot's shoulder.
"Tonight, we leave immediately for the island,"
Misery saw everything. She saw Curly killing the Mimiga, laughing, losing her sanity.
"CURLY!" She screeched, appearing in front of the trembling, giggling girl. "Curly, get up NOW!"
Curly stopped giggling and looked up at Misery. Her pupils became normal once more, and she stared in horror at the Mimiga corpses. "...W...wha...?"
"Your mind went crazy, and you started killing the Mimiga." The witch replied, staring at a dead body at her feet. She kicked it away, and kneeled down in front of Curly. "Listen to me, kid. You need to control yourself. You'll kill all the Mimiga if you're not careful. And we need them for-"
"To help the Doctor take over the Surface. I know." The female robot replied. "I'm sorry..."
"I'm not saying I forgive you. You're keeping watch on the Balcony for now. If anything poses a threat, you come to me, or the Doctor."
With that, Misery waved her staff and Curly disappeared.
The girl found herself standing on a grey platform, overlooking the night sky.
How long has it been ever since I drowned in that room?
Has it been a day, a week? I don't know.
Curly laid down on the grass as she pondered those questions.
I can't believe I killed all those poor mimigas.
I wonder what'd happen if my children saw me now.
She stood up once more to check her surroundings.
One, two, three, and four mimigas all fed red flowers.
Could they be mine?
Curly brushed away the thought.
But as she took a closer look at the Mimiga, she recognised the clothes one of them wore...
She stared in disbeleif, but then shook her head, feeling nauseous. She should've known Misery lied...
She looked out in the distance, seeing the blue clouds lit up by the perfectly full moon. Millions of stars glittered the inky black sky, twinkling in their own unique pattern. Looking back over to the Mimiga children, she saw one of them, a huge one staring at her with glowing amber eyes. It slowly growled to one of the smaller ones. The small (for a demonised) Mimiga nodded, and made its way to the robot. It barked random gibberish to Curly once it was four feet in front of her. "Mmmnngaamaa..." It rumbled, looking frustrated with itself.
"H...hello..." Curly squeaked, eyes wide. I thought the red flowers...
I won't hurt you. A young male voice whispered in her head. She knew that voice...
"...Tobi? Is that you?" She whispered.
Yes. The demon Mimiga nodded, pupiless eyes shining. You still recognise me?
"I'll be honest and say I didn't." Curly replied.
You see, Tobi continued, my siblings and I have been subjects to the demon flowers for about a month. We're slowly, very slowly gaining our sanity back. Curse that Doctor... Tobi lashed his claws at a stone statue, the head of it snapping off and flying off the Island.
"...You've gotton very strong..." Curly whispered. "What about Koron? Is she doing alright?"
Tobi nodded. She's busy right now. But I can get Alan or Krystal.
Curly shook her head. "I'm sorry... it'll be too painful..."
Suddenly, Tobi turned and roared, sensing an intruder. He stomped away, baring his teeth as a green dragon landed on the Balcony.
It's him... She gasped, staring at Quote. I have to warn Misery! She quickly ran out of sight before Quote could spot her.
Curly ran to the throne room, spotting the witch sitting on her throne.
"Misery! They're h-"
"Yes, yes. I know," Misery raised her staff, chanting a spell.
Curly felt the same throbbing pain once more.
She fell on to the floor, holding on to her head as if it would crack open.
"That was just a little pick-up spell. Now, go and stall the intruders!"
Curly's eyes turned red, as she started to giggle.
"Yes, my lady. Hee hee! I'll rip 'em into shreds!"
Something had made the dragon lurch to the left.
Panicking, Quote held on to the dragon for dear life. But something had grabbed him. Flailing, he tried to get a good look at who attacked him.
"I foouunnd yoouu~" A distorted voice whispered. "Dooo yoouu miinnnd if I killl yooouuu~?" He gasped in pain as he was thrown violently to the ground. Wincing, Quote looked up...
And saw Curly.
Her eyes glowing crimson, her wide grin... just like the dream...
"Time tooo go to sleeep~" She cooed, face inches from his. He squirmed, trying to escape, but somethhng pushed against his forehead. Curly hummed quietly, still grinning. "Huusssh myyy friieeennd~" She giggled, pupils shrinking, her finger on the trigger. "Clooossee yoouur eeyyees and sssaayy goodniiight~!"
"No, lady, don't!"
Kanna screamed as he slammed against Curly, knocking her slightly off-balance.
Her shot landed just a pinpoint away from Quote's antenna.
"Oh, you liiiittle boy~
Do you want to die, tooooo?"
Curly stood up and dashed toward Kanna.
The boy didn't know what to do.
Kanna nodded, and he ran towards the nearest door he could find.
Quote took out his Polar Star, and shot Curly.
The shot didn't even reach her, as it was only a level one gun.
"Ohh~ Painful, how terrible! That hurt baaaadly, hee hee!"
Gritting his teeth, Quote looked around. Thinking fast, he hopped onto the sky dragon and had it fly to blinking yellow lights he saw up above. EXP tanks. He shot at one, and yellow triangle shards bounced around. He quickly eqquiped them to all his guns; Polar Star, Fireball, Missle Launcher, and Bubbline.
Suddenly the dragon lurched, and roared in pain.
Curly was madly shooting at the dragon, a wide smirk across her face as she watched blood fall to the ground.
"We have to land! NOW!" Kazuma screamed, watching in horror as the dragon's roars slowly dimmed and turned to choked cries.
Quote nodded, and quickly helped the injured dragon land. Once it's feet made contact with the ground, it collapsed, breathing shallow.
The robot boy stared at Curly in hatred. "I'm not going to lose to you." He pointed his Polar Star at her, arms shaking from the tension.
"Reeaaallyyy~?" Curly asked, laughing. Her voice didn't even sound like hers anymore... it sounded like...
"...Misery." He said simply. "INSTEAD OF CONTROLLING MY FRIEND, COME OUT HERE AND FACE ME YOURSELF, YOU COWARD!"
Curly's eyes flashed. "I'm nooot Misssery, foooool~" She giggled. "I aaamm meeee~ Curlyyy~" She took out a new gun; one Quote didn't recognize. "Reeaadyy to diiieee~?" She pulled the trigger, and a huge bolt of lightning shot out.
Thinking quickly, Quote immediately ducked. The shot hit the statue, which reflected off of it and sent it strait back at Curly. It hit with enough force to knock her backward, her shirt burned off, and her belly had a large singe mark on it.
For a moment, Quote saw Curly's eyes flash blue, the blue he remembered, and they stared at him pleadingly before they turned red again and she jumped to her feet, not seeming to care that her shirt was basically destroyed.
"Curly! Wake up, please!"
"But I am up~ Can't yoooou see?"
Quote raised his Missile Launcher and aimed it at her.
"Forgive me, Curly,"
He shot three missiles at Curly, landing a direct hit.
"Owwww... Next time Quote, if you truly want to be a hero, meet us at the throne room!"
With those words, Curly collapsed.
As much as it hurt him, he ran toward the throne room, ignoring Curly, feeling bitter hatred for Misery. He burst into the room, looking around wildly, only to find her sitting on her throne, grinning.
"You know," She began. "I thought of you as nothing more than a bug to crush. Now I understand that you're a much, much bigger problem as of now." She raised her staff. "Prepare yourself!" She floated in the air, grinning. "Come and get me!"
Misery fired three black spheres in the air, slowly inching towards Quote.
He ran toward the witch, ready to blast her with rockets.
Suddenly, the spheres shot bolts of lightning down at the robot.
"How d'you like my magic, little robot?" Misery teased.
He ignored the remark and shot two missiles at Misery.
Quick as a flash, she disappeared.
Quote spun around and blasted three missiles at the witch.
"Quote, use this!"
A blueish gun slid across the floor, straight at Quote's feet.
"What's this?" Quote asked, picking it up.
"It's the Spur! Hurry up and defeat that witch! Hold the trigger to charge power, then let it go!"
Quote nodded, and held the trigger, feeling the power this gun possessed. He released the trigger, and a white laser shot out of it.
It was a direct hit.
"Arg!" Misery winced, then straitened her posture. "You'll have to hit me plenty more times if you want to defeat me!" She raised her staff, and three black circles chased Quote.
Panicked, Quote ran away from them, charging up power in the Spur. The robot then turned around and ran in the oppisite direction, feeling the lightning striking inches away from him. He shot at Misery, who disappeared before the shot could hit her.
Quote charged the Spur once more, clutching the trigger tightly.
He looked around the room, waiting for the second Misery would show up.
Out of the corner of his eye, he spotted the witch, ready to cast more of those dreaded bolts.
Quote released the trigger, shooting the laser at Misery.
It shot her straight to the ground.
"You little bot! I will get my revenge, I'll have you know!"
Misery raised her staff in the air, waving it around like a flag.
"...And that revenge will come sooner than you think!"
With that, she disappeared to somewhere unknown.
"YOU HURT HER!"
Quote had hardly any time to react as Curly tackled him to the ground. He felt a burning pain in his belly as she shot deady lightning at him, making direct hits.
When he finally broke out of her grasp, Quote quickly charged his Spur, running away as Curly chased him.
"Yoouuu'ree goonnaaa paaaay~!" She hissed, smirking as she got him cornered. The robot girl poked his cheek with her gun, getting an idea. She raised it, quickly whipping the gun across Quote's face, sending him tumbling to the ground.
"Yoouu caall yourself a heerooo~?" She giggled, placing her foot on his chest. "Yoouu'rree sssso weak~"
Quote's vision was blurred, the pain within his cheek was burning, and he couldn't breathe without pain shooting across his body. Arms shaking, he reached for her foot, and, with all the strength he could muster, pulled.
He didn't expect her to fall on top of him.
This is my chance! He charged up the Spur, wincing his eyes shut and turned his head away, pressing the gun at her.
He released the trigger, and a loud scream of pain was the result. He felt Curly go limp snd roll off of him as he sat up, seeing what he had done.
She was alive-that releived him greatly-and her collarbone area had a large singe mark on it. She was unconcious.
Quote stood there, not knowing what to do.
If he left Curly there, she would probably be taken away by Misery.
But, if he carried her along, Curly would wake up and start another fight.
The robot sighed and carried Curly up, piggyback-style.
He walked towards the door, where Kanna was waiting.
"Didn't I tell you to hide behind the door?"
Kanna pointed at Kazuma, "He said it was okay to stay out here,"
Quote glanced over at Kazuma tending to the dragon's wounds.
"It's not too serious, thankfully," he spoke,
"If we stay for the night, its wounds should heal,"
The robot and the little child nodded in unison.
"I have a doctor to see." Quote smirked at his joke. "I'll be back. Don't worry." With that, Quote made his way to the Doctor's throne.
"Nnngh..." The robot boy's heart lurched when Curly wriggled, eyes fluttering open. They were blue, which meant she was in control instead of Misery. "Huh...?" she looked around warily, then noticed Quote holding her. "wha... what happened?" She winced as she shifted her bad shoulder, seeing the burn marks accross her body, and Quote's.
"You went crazy under Misery's control and tried to kill me." he replied, intent on jumping from ledge to ledge toward the Doctor's throne.
"I... I did what?" She was in shock. "H-how-?"
"After you gave me your airtank, I tried all I could to bring you with me. But the water made you too heavy to lift, and the waterway had a powerful current. You would've been swept away. I had no choice but to leave you there." He looked down, and closed his eyes. "I'm so sorry. I'm no hero. That's why I fled to the mountains with Kazuma, a friend of mine. Because I felt torn in two without you. I felt so guilty that I left you there, that I just gave up..." He looked back up. "Until I saw an enraged Mimiga. Turned out to be someone I knew. His name was Jack, and I had to kill him before he killed me. That's when I knew I had to go back. I wasn't able to save you, but I thought I could still save the Mimiga." He turned to look at Curly in the eyes. "...Will you please forgive me?"
Curly took in all the information that Quote had just given her.
She held on tightly to the robot and sighed.
"I... I do forgive you," Curly handed the Nemesis to Quote.
"...And I'm sorry I tried to kill you, too,"
As Quote hopped up the last steps towards the Doctor's table, he felt a wave of confidence.
With a sense of relief and a trustworthy weapon in his grasp, he continued up the steps...
He was not prepared to see the Mimiga in cages. In shock, his eyes widened.
"What?" Curly asked.
"There are Mimiga in cages up here..."
The Mimiga's heads all turned toward them, and seeing Curly, all began to cry and quiver in fear.
"They're scared of me..." Curly whimpered, turning away.
"It's finally complete!"
Quote looked over to the Doctor, seeing him looking directly at him in the eye. "The power of the red flower is simply amazing! So powerful, that with a couple crystals, I have created this." He held up a red gem that was the size of his hand in width, but taller than his head. "...The red crystal." He chuckled, glasses glinting in the sunrise's light. "This crystal is unique, for not only does it work on Mimiga, but humans as well." Quote felt his heart lurch, eyes widening. "I'll give you a demonstration... in a very strict lecture!" With that, the Doctor's red crystal orbited around his body, and his eyes turned red.
Quote gave Curly back the Nemesis. "Are you strong enough to stand?" He quickly dodged an attack, almost stumbling to the ground because of Curly's and his combined weight.
Curly shook her head sadly, but then suddenly she had an idea.
She aimed her Nemesis at the Doctor.
"How d'you like some extra firepower?"
Quote smiled mischievously.
"It would be nice,"
As the two shot thunder and fireballs at the Doctor, the mimigas in the cages watched intently.
One mimiga tugged on another's shoulder.
"Isn't that the guard from the Plantation?"
"Yeah, that evil one. She's pretty nice-looking, huh?"
"Well, yeah that, but she looks pretty kind now.
I mean, come on! She's fighting Doctor Dumb!"
"I can see that. Come on, let's cheer them on!"
The room filled with cheers and screams while the duo fought on.
Suddenly, the Doctor stopped fighting. He clawed at his face, screaming in pain.
"The power... I can't control it!!"
"Here he comes!" Curly screamed while Quote ran as fast as he could as the now mutated Doctor charged toward them.
"He disappeared!" A Mimiga yelled.
"What?" Quote stopped, looking around, Curly looked up and gasped.
She couldn't finish as they were under the Doctor's extreme weight. Curly looked like she was in loads of pain, her legs bent in an awkward angle.
The Doctor cackled, and picked Quote up, throwing him into a wall. The impact knocked the air out of him, and he felt the wall crack and break from the impact. He fell to the ground, not gaving the strength to get up.
Curly looked around wildly, trying to find a way to defeat this maniac. She grabbed the Nemesis, and shot the Doctor multiple times.
The man charged toward Curly, only to suddenly stop, looking down at his belly, where a sword was poking out. He looked behind him, and saw Quote, his face filled with anger, shoving the sword deeper in his body until the hilt was pushing against the Doctor's back.
Wuth a yell, Quote ripped the sword away from his foe's body, and kicked him to the ground. The Doctor screamed. It sounded distorted and choked; blood pooled everywhere, quickly dissolving into red mist with the rest of his body.
Panting, Quote stared at the place where the Doctor once was, shaking. His knees buckled and he fell, catching himself with his hands. He was shaking wickedly, weak and exhausted.
"A-are you okay, Quote?" Curly asked.
Quote tried to stand up, but he fell flat on the floor.
"Oh... I can't help you get up," Curly looked at her legs.
"My legs are broken, I think,"
Then, a familiar mimiga stepped out to the front of the cage.
Her purple fur and bright red lipstick stood out from the others.
"Hey! Mister Traveller, Do you remember me?
It's me, Chaco, the mimiga you met in Grasstown!"
She squeezed a handful of hearts between the bars.
"I was going to keep this for any weary travellers I met, but you probably need it more,"
Quote ate a few hearts and instantly felt a bit better.
"By the way, do you have my lipstick? Heh, I lost it a while ago,"
Quote blushed heavily, then fumbled his pocket for said item. "I found it in my pocket when I woke up... you were in the bed too..."
Chako giggled. "Heheh... sorry about that... I was really tired I guess..."
Curly facepalmed. "ugh... Let's just get this last battle done with..."
"Hold on!" A Mimiga called, bringing a rope to Quote. "Here. Have this tow rope."
"Thank you," Quote took the rope from the mimiga.
He walked over to Curly, and carried her up.
"Oookay, now hand me that tow rope,"
Curly tied it tightly around her and Quote, hooking the ends to her belt.
"This is really strange, you know?" Curly whispered.
"What?" Quote asked, looking over to her.
"Just... we're fighting together. I feel as though this is what we were created to do..." She looked up. "But we both lost our memories. I don't know what we're really meant to do, but I think this is it..."
"Yeah," Quote started climbing up the blocks.
"This is what we were built to do."
Once they reached the top, the robots were presented with a dark space.
The only thing that could be seen was the Core, slightly blue.
Quote started to walk forward when a voice came out of nowhere.
Misery appeared with Sue, paws tied behind her back.
"If you still value this girl's life, step away from the core, understand?"
Alarmed, Quote stepped back.
Misery saw Curly, and narrowed her crimson eyes. "I never imagined you two would defeat the new king."
"King?" Curly hissed. "That "King" was a menace! A monster!"
"I can still make a deal with you. You have a choice. Either destroy the Core and watch the Island fall to its doom, or..." She smirked. "you can leave now and forget you ever came." She held Sue up with her magic. "If you leave, I can gurantee this girl's life. Otherwise-"
You won't escape... A voice hissed.
"Who goes there?" Misery yelled, turning around to see a red mist seeping from the ground into the air.
Have you already forgotton the voice of your master? This caused Misery to drop Sue, which woke the Mimiga up.
My body may be wrecked, but my spirit never felt so distinct! It's like I've become a superman!
Misery growled, then yelled. "ARE YOU NOT DEAD?!"
Sue yelped, and ran over to Quote and Curly, who were watching this whole ordeal in shock.
"Those who cheat death..." The witch raised her staff, which began to glow blue. "DISAPPEAR!" She used a powerful spell to knock the red mist away, but the magic swept through the mist harmlessly.
Tsk, tsk... the voice boomed in dissaproval. Those who disobey do not deserve free will. The red cloud inched closer to Misery, and the red crystal suddenly appeared. Misery. You will be my puppet until the day you die. The mist consumed the witch, causing her to scream in agony. Her body grew, her eyes turned black, a tail grew from her backside, and her blue hair became snarly and ragged.
"Um..." Sue was scared, but she wasn't about to show that. "Let's get out of here!" With that, the Mimiga began to run.
That is, until the red crystal stopped her.
She screamed, and her body began mutating as well. She soon looked like a tan human girl in a bunny suit. Her eyes were glowing red.
The crimson mist seeped into the Core, which caused it to shake the whole room. A face poked out from the Core's mouth. It looked like a huge red skull.
You're not leaving this place alive!
Curly raised her Nemesis in the air, ready to fire.
Quote answered, without a hint of regret.
"Yeah. Let's do this!"
He jumped from platform to platform, trying to get as close to the face as he could.
Quote took out the missile launcher and fired missile after missile into the Core's face.
"Wait, Quote! Behind you!"
A strange bunny-looking girl slammed into the two.
They fell from the platform and promptly got tackled by critters.
Quote took out the Spur and attacked the critters until they were all gone. He quickly stood, and made sure Curly was still fasened to his body with the tow rope. He shot at Sue, who reeled back in pain.
The Core opened its mouth again, only to be met with a flurry of missles. It soon closed again as Misery summoned a horde of bats that bit and clawed at the two robots.
Thinking fast, he charged his Spur to maxinmum power, and released the trigger. The bats were all destroyed as the laser went strait through Misery's body. She screamed, the cry sounding heavily distorted, and collapsed onto the ground.
The Core opened it's mouth again, but it was clenching its teeth, and orange missles sped toward Quote and Curly. Quote shot at the monster with his missle launcher. It closed its mouth again, and he turned to Curly.
"Yes. I've waited a long time for our mission to be over!" She replied, gripping her Nemesis in anticipation.
"Alright. When the Core opens its mouth, shoot as fast as you can!"
When the Core opened its maw again, there was the skulls gaping mouth exposed. The back of its throat began to glow and spark. Curly gasped.
Quote immediately did what he was told, and fell to his knees.
Howeve, Sue wasn't able to notice the blast before it hit; causing her body to be thrown to the wall, unconscious.
"NOW!" Quote yelled, shooting missle after missle at the Core. Curly did the same, vigerously shooting lightning bolts at the blue beast.
Suddenly, the Core stopped, and smoke billowed from its mouth. The whole room began to shake, the beast sinking toward the ground.
The Core exploded seconds later, sending Curly and Quote toward a wall. Alarmed, Quote turned himself toward the wall, and he took the impact himself.
Everything went black.
"Hey! Curly! Red-cap!
Get up, get up, get up!"
Sue jumped up and down, trying to wake the two up.
Quote woke up first, feeling strangely refreshed.
Wasn't he just knocked against the wall...?
"Oh! Finally, someone's up!"
Kazuma stood there with the baby dragon, healthy and ready to go.
Quote sat up, noticing the shaking ground below him and the falling blocks above.
"We have to go. If we stay any longer, the island will fall to the ground!"
Quote was about to get on the dragon, when he heard a voice.
"I know how to stop the Island from falling."
Quote turned, and saw Misery, who was in terrible shape. She was normal again, but she was covered in bruises, cuts and gashes. She used her staff for support as she stood.
"Shut up, you stupid witch!" Sue yelled, getting on the dragon herself.
Misery narrowed her eyes. "You have to go down into the Blood-Stained Sanctuary and defeat my uncle, Ballos. He's the one making the Island fall."
"That's ridiculous!" Curly exclaimed, still tied to Quote.
"Just DO IT!" Misery raised her staff, and the two robots vanished.
The island was still rumbling.
But also, it was very hot all of a sudden.
The walls around them were bright orange.
"Welcome to Hell!"
Well, that's what the sign said.
Quote looked down the seemingly endless stairs of spikes.
One touch, and they'd be killed.
Curly nudged her partner's back.
"Don't worry, Quote. We've come pretty far. It's too late to go back, so let's do this!"
He took the leap, using the booster in short bursts.
A short boost to the right, and a long boost to get up.
Once he stood on the next platform, a voice rang in his mind.
"Did you know that the witch, Jenka had a younger brother?"
Jenka? Oh yes, from the Sand Zone...
"He had magical powers, much more powerful than his older sister's..."
He fell down a pit, landing a couple meters down. A long row of spikes stood in their way. Confident, he jumped from the ledge, launching himself forward until he freefell down toward a pile of spikes down below.
Panicked, Quote saw a small ledge and immediately took hold of it, making sure Curly was still there. He then looked down and over, seeing a door from upside-down. He let himself fall, and he sped forward with the Booster, making it to safety; for now.
But then time froze once more, and the voice spoke again. "He led and protected the people of his home. They loved, trusted, and respected him in return... Even more than their own king..."
Time began once more, and his stride was completely broken from doing so. He tumbled to the ground with a grunt, his and Curly's combined weight knocking the air out of him.
"You okay?" Curly asked, unhindered by the voice. "One moment you're fine, the next, you break your stride like you've been punched in the chest."
"I'm fine." Quote mumbled, getting back to his feet. He walked through the door, and immediately ducked, because two projectiles flew toward him.
Getting a better look at them, he noticed they looked like humans, but they had puffy yellow hair, a thin white robe on, and white, feathery wings. The two winged humans charged at him again, and Quote responded by running.
As he ran, Quote noticed the falling blocks ahead of him.
"By the way, Quote," Curly started as she shot the angels down.
"you better keep on running, 'cause there's falling blocks everywhere!"
He nodded and boosted repeatedly toward the end.
yet again, time stopped.
"The king was so jealous that he locked Ballos away.
He was tortured until he could stand it no more."
This story is getting creepier and creepier... Quote thought, continuing to run. He found a pit and jumped into it, but freezing in mid-air.
"The wizard let his magic run wild. Weakened by the torture, he was helpless to contain it. The jealous king had been destroyed my the powerful wave. Along with his home, his family, and his entire kingdom. Everything he loved was destroyed; shrouded only by firey hot ashes."
He fell down the pit again, and the angels from above had followed him.
Curly turned her aim to the angels, but there were still too many.
"We're gonna have to run, Quote!"
He boosted past the room, not noticing the presses in front of him.
As Quote flew past them, the presses slammed down, making him shiver.
If he made one wrong move, it'd be over.
He felt overwhelmed. Well, perhaps that was an understatement. He felt an array of mixed emotions. Angry at Misery, worried about the Island falling, scared he and Curly were going to die, and simply overwhelmed. He hadn't exactly had a break since going back to the Island, and he was afraid he was going to overly exhaust himself.
He had lost track of what he was doing, and felt a burning pain in his leg. Looking down, he saw an arrow dug into his leg. He ripped it out in one swift motion, but faced the concequences as a huge jolt of agony ripped across his body.
Biting his lip, he shuddered, leaning forward. How was he supposed to do this without dying?
He realized Curly's voice in an instant.
"C'mon, don't sweat the small things!
If you keep sulking, even in here, you won't go very far! We're robots, not porcelain dolls!"
The robot ignored the pain in his leg, feeling a new sense of hope welling up in him.
Before Quote could say a quick word of appreciation, time stopped.
"Seeing her younger brother's rage, Jenka confined Ballos to the floating island.
She could not bring herself to kill her own brother."
When he was able to move once more, he nodded to Curly in thanks.
He soon lost track of time, finding himself on a ledge, listening to more of the story.
"It was Misery, Jenka's daughter who created the Demon Crown. She sought for power, and Ballos tricked her into becoming an eternal slave for his power. She was cursed to obey whoever posesses it. The curse can be lifted if the Demon Crown is destroyed.
Quote felt weak, hurt, but he knew he had to keep moving. He jumped onto the next ledge, and didn't notice the pit until he fell down.
He didn't pass out when he fell, but he felt the recoil. It hurt. ALOT. Panting, the robot stood, looking around warily. Everything froze for hopefully the last time.
"The crown will be made anew forever as long as Ballos lives. As long as his heart still beats, his rage will continue to grow, powering his everlasting creation, the Demon Crown."
"Okay," Curly said out loud, "let's just take a two minute rest."
Quote was in no position to complain. He sat down and untied Curly.
Rummaging through Quote's bag for any scraps of food, Curly took out a certain thing.
"Why, look! What a pretty jar!"
Quote stared at the life pot, completely forgetting that he still kept one.
He grabbed the jar from Curly, eating half of its contents.
"Hey, that's not very nice!"
Quote handed the jar back to her.
"Take the rest. It'll heal you."
Curly's mouth made a silent 'o' as she realized what this was. "...Jenka made this, didn't she?"
"Yeah..." Quote whispered, feeling much, much better.
"That was really nice of her." The blonde replied with a wide smile. She ate the rest of the contents within the jar, suddenly feeling refreshed and ready to move. Her legs didn't hurt anymore either! Standing up, she smiled. "Whatever Jenka used worked amazing! I can walk now!"
With a smile, Quote stood up as well. However, he was suddenly embraced by his partner. His eyes went wide, and before he knew it, Curly drew back.
"...S-sorry..." She whispered, blushing. "I'm just glad we're both alive, and..."
"I know." The black-haired boy replied, smiling. "It's okay. I'm happy too." He grabbed the towrope, and wrapped it around his waist. "Let's keep moving."
The two headed left, where they saw a door.
The next room looked much different from the ones they were just in.
The floor, ceiling, everything was grey, very much like the balcony.
A faint barking could be heard.
"A puppy?" Curly thought out loud.
"Do you think it's one of Jenka's?"
Quote kneeled down in front of the puppy.
It had pale fur and it gave off a ghostly kind of feeling.
"Woof, woof. You're the next challengers, correct?"
Curly smiled at the puppy.
"How cute! You can talk!
Wait a sec, aren't you a dog?"
"Yes, I'm a dog." The puppy replied.
"You look just like Hajime..." Curly cooed.
"He and I are... distant relatives." He then looked to Quote. "You must kill my master." He barked. "His magic has gone too far out of control. His death will lift the curse this island's befallen." The canine closed his eyes. "He is a man who doesn't know death. He craves it, yet his magic doesn't let him. Please..." The dog started to fade. "Defeat him before it's too late..."
Curly lunged at the dog, but it had already materialized into thin air.
She fell on the floor, face first.
"Are you okay?"
Quote reached out a hand to help Curly up.
"Yeah, but still..." Curly turned away from Quote, with a worried expression.
"Do you really think we can stop this guy?"
The robot put a hand on his friend's shoulder.
"I can't say for sure..." Quote started off, uncertain.
"But with so many people depending on us, we can't afford to give up, right?"
Curly smiled and headed towards the door.
"Right. Let's go!"
Together, they opened the door and started to fall.
When they had landed, they looked ahead and saw a man standing in the middle of the room with his eyes closed.
Cautiously, Quote crept forward, wondering why the man looked so... calm. Why did the man look so content when the Island was falling to its doom?
"Ah!" A voice suddenly shattered the awkward silence. "It's been so long since I've seen anybody! Welcome!" The man clasped his hands together and gave the two robots a warm smile. "My name is Ballos. Who might you be?" He opened his eyes, and Quote noticed that one was a pure white, while the other was a chilling blood red.
Were his eyes always like that?
"I see that you have taken notice of my eyes, boy."
Quote quickly looked away, trying not to look suspicious.
Curly noticed the uncomfortable situation he was placed in, and tried to change the subject.
"My name is Curly Brace, sir. My partner over there, well, his name's Quote."
"So, Quote and Curly Brace? You two seem to be very formidable challengers. However, no one has ever defeated me yet."
Quote raised his weapon, ready to fire.
"Enough," Ballos closed his eyes one last time.
"Now try and kill me! Or else I will kill you!"
Ballos sped forward in an incredible burst of speed, tackling right into Quote.
"Quote!" Curly jumped out of the way and shot at Ballos; well, it didn't seem to make much of a difference.
Quote, stunned, slowly sat up, blinking away the blurry edges of his vision. He wasn't going to give up yet.
As the fight went on, Quote became weaker and weaker. Ballos semed to be finally look like he was being attacked. His robe was torn and burnt in some spots.
Quote was tackled again by Ballos, and the robot slammed into a nearby wall.
He didn't get up.
"Quote!" Curly looked around wildly, trying to find Ballos. I swear when I get my hands on that bastard, I'll- her thouhts were interrupted when a bolt of lightning blasted the ground just mere inches from her face, singinf a few strands of her hair. Eyes wide in shock, she looked up and then ran across the room, trying to dodge the lightning bolts that shot toward her.
Curly circled Ballos, who was now floating in the air. She shot him endlessly with the Nemesis, and it was doing a good deal of damage to him. Suddenly, the lightning stopped following Curly. She knew who Ballos was aiming for. Curly shot a flurry of lightning bolts at Ballos, trying to stop him before he could get a good shot at Quote.
All of a sudden, the room filled with bats, and the powerful wizard flew straight up. The battlefield was filled with the chattering of green bats, but nothing more.
No matter how he tried, Quote could not find the strength to get up. Opening his eyes, he saw the blurry shape of Curly jumping away as a huge ball fell from the ceiling. The faint rumbling grew stronger and stronger. Were they going to defeat this thing? And live before the Island itself falls? He felt himself slipping away; and he tried to fight it, but no avail. His eyes closed and a small portion of his mind tried to stop it.
However, the rest of his mind simply didn't care.
He heard a huge explosion and felt the rumbling slow... before he couldn't breathe... and... everything simply stopped.
Curly fell to the ground as Ballos' huge, ball-shaped body explode. She had stabbed the beast in the right; red eye, and the monster simply exploded.
With a grunt, the blonde fell to the ground, covered in scrapes and bruises. Though they shrieked with pain, she had to see if Quote was alright.
"Quote?" Curly looked around the room for her partner, and when she found him, her heart lurched. "Quote!" SHe rushed over to him, and shook him. "Quote, come on! Get up! It's over!"
When he didn't respond, she stared at him for a moment. He looked so peaceful, and much smaller. She realized that he wasn't breathing and panicked.
"H-hey! You can't be dead! After all you've done, you can't go!" Curly's vision blurred, as her eyes filled up with tears.
She hugged Quote tightly, silently wishing that he wasn't truly dead. A robot couldn't just, die so easily!
A large, dark room filled with the bodies of rusted robots.
I remember that time when she gave that air tank to me.
That robot... he started to speak, telling us to retreat, right?
Then he exploded.
Can robots even explode like that? When they run out of power, do they just explode into many pieces?
... I don't think humans do that...
Curly looked around the room, trying to find a way out. Though her mind was running with thoughts and trying not to accept the fact that Quote, her friend, was dead.
It hurts... a voice suddenly echoed among the room. It's so... hot... h-help...
Curly looked up, holding Quote even tighter. "...W-who's there...?!" She felt the room shake and the wall lurched forward.
Numb with shock, Curly scooted away, hauling Quote with her. "T-the wall!" She cried, eyes closing tight. She felt tears stream down her face as she held Quote in her arms, never wanting to let go.
The wall lurched forward once again, so the blonde stood, still carrying Quote, and ran to the middle of the room.
"Quote..." Curly's anger grew and grew. Not because of Quote, but because everything she ever did was a waste. She was going to die, and she knew it. "...QUOTE! WAKE UP!!" She screamed at him, more and more tears dripping to the ground. "PLEASE! You... you just can't..." She broke down into pitiful sobs, sitting and grasping her friend tight like a little girl would a teddy bear. Curly sat, waiting for the walls to crush her...
A shadow cast over Curly as she looked up, only to be greeted by a grey rectangle.
Balrog...? But why?
He landed in front of the robots, motioning for them to get on.
"Hold on to my arm, you two! Hopefully, if there's enough time, we can get out of here!"
Curly grabbed on, too shocked to even ask why. She held Quote, praying that she wouldn't let go by accident.
"All right, hang on! I'm going to get you two outta here!"
Curly braced herself as Balrog leaped into the air, his head smashing through the ceiling. She held Quote tighty with one arm, and Balrog with the other; though her deep shock made her grip shaky.
She winced as her eyes met sunlight...
Climbing shakily to the top of Balrog's head, she saw that the gray box had wings where his arms would be.
Curly herself began to shudder; the shock settling in and messing with her mind.
"Hey, you alright up there?" Balrog asked.
Curly hardly heard him before she laid down completely and everything went black...
Back in Sand Zone, I cared for the mimigas as if they were my children.
They are my precious children, and that's not going to change.
I just can't believe that he's dead. My dear friend.
I miss him more than I miss my children.
Are they even still alive?
Quote, I'm sorry that I even hated you.
I like you, really.
..."Hey, Curly! Come on, get up, blondie!"
With a small groan, Curly opened her eyes halfway; then closed them once more.
"Come ON!" She faintly felt a hand shake her. "You've been out for DAYS!"
She decided to ignore the voice, sleep taking over once more.
She knew that voice...
But he's dead. I must be hearing things.
She felt a hand grab hers. It felt... so right to her...
"If you can hear me, squeeze my hand..."
She tried, and realized just how weak she was. She could barely find the strength to squeeze the hand grabbing hers.
"Good... now open your eyes, Curly..."
She kept her eyes closed.
"Don't worry, I'm sure I know who you are." she chuckled.
Curly felt something wet on her cheek.
She sat up, eyes open.
The robot who sat in front of her looked so sad, trying to hold back tears.
"Oh, Quote..." she whispered, "Please don't cry. I'm sorry."
Quote quickly wrapped his arms around his friend and cried. "I..." He paused, trying to contain himself. "I wasn't strong enough, Curly... I left you alone to fight that monster... I left you in that Core room... Why did those humans bring me back to life...?!" He asked; half to himself. He felt crushed, his heart broken; in more ways than one.
Curly didn't know what to say.
She remembered the last moments she had in the Core room, feeling worried and uncertain.
She trusted Quote to save everybody, and he ran away.
The robot felt sympathy for her friend.
She, too, had done horrible things.
"It's not your fault. Please, it's all in the past now." Curly spoke, with a hint of sadness in her tone.
"I forgave you. Just... please, don't be so sad."
Quote was silent, his shoulders slumped. "..."
"Please, tell me what's wrong! I don't want you to be so burdened!" Curly begged.
She just wanted him to be happy, for once.
"...I'm... I'm not a hero, Curly. You defeated Ballos, I died. I'm weak, Curly."
"Without you, I'd still be killing mimigas!" She yelled.
Quote remembered what he saw in his nightmare.
A robot, killing mimigas without any remorse. It wasn't a dream, it was the truth.
"If you weren't there for me, we wouldn't be here right now!
I was going to rot in the Labyrinth, with no hope of ever saving my children!"
Curly shook her partner, trying to make him understand.
"Don't you realize it?! If we had never met, the mimigas would have perished, I would be helpless without my children, and you would've been another rusting robot in the Core room!"
Quote was speechless, and was staring at Curly with wide eyes as she began crying herself. She hugged Quote tight, like she did when he was dead.
"Quote, do you know how... broken I felt when I found out you were dead in the throne room? I was so mad at myself. I felt torn apart. I felt no will to live anymore. But..." She stared at Quote in the eyes. "But now that you're with me again. I feel... so happy. I... I like you... a lot, Quote."
She gave no reply, embarrassed by her sudden confession.
Quote whispered something into her ear, nervous and shy.
"Oh? Y-you too, Quote?
The two robots smiled happily.
Curly gave him a quick hug. Smiling, she sighed, feeling happy.
Quote looked outside. "We're on the surface. You've never seen it, have you?"
"...No." Curly looked out as well. "Can we go out and see?"
"It's so beautiful..." Curly stared at the open field with a wide grin. "So much room..." The robot looked up at the sky as a breeze flew by, sending her hair billowing to the left. She then sprinted forward. "Come on, Quote!" She called back.
With a smile, Quote chased after her, quickly catching up to her as they stopped up top of a hill covered with flowers, the wind blowing by.
Quote kneeled down and picked up a pretty white daisy. He put it in Curly's hair with a faint blush on his cheeks. "...It looks pretty, doesn't it?" He glanced toward the sunset as Curly sat beside him.
"Yeah..." Curly leaned against his shoulder, closing her blue eyes. "...I'm so glad we both lived to see... the end of our mission."
Quote nodded, grinning down at Curly.
They sat there for a while, watching the sun slowly set...
"HEY! You two should kiss!" Balrog said from behind the two robots; making them jump.
"Wha? Balrog?!" Curly stared at the toaster for a few moments before staring back at Quote, who was blushing. "...Uh..." She then gave him a quick kiss on the cheek before turning away, face flushed.
Quote glanced at Balrog for a moment before he rose an eyebrow. "Who invited you?"
"Uhm... NOBODY!" Balrog gave his trademark grin. "I'lljustleaveyoualonenowBYE!!" He then flew away.
"Thanks, Quote..." Curly murmured without looking at him.
The blonde looked up. "...Yeah?"
Quote beamed, and hugged her. Then he lifted her head and kissed her softly. The two robots blushed as another breeze blew by, and they drew apart.
"I love you, Curly..."
"...I love you too... Quote..."
THE HAPPITY ENDIE!!