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Descent into Labyrinth is the story mode for Fantendo Labyrinth. When several heroes of the Fantendoverse are transported to a mysterious world named Labyrinth, they must band together to find the culprit and get themselves home.
The Fan and The Enemy sit together in a room in Kolob playing a game of chess. The Enemy seems deep in thought over his next move while The Fan seems confident, laughing a bit as his brother looks over the board.
- The Fan: I always have been better at this than you, huh?
The Enemy glares at The Fan momentarily before moving a piece. The Fan looks surprised; evidently he's now at a large disadvantage.
- The Fan: ...huh.
- The Enemy: Don't let yourself become too arrogant, brother. It's important you keep yourself on guard nowadays.
The Fan makes another move.
- The Fan: We can handle the war. We dealt with the Shattering, we dealt with each other... I'm not being arrogant, I'm being optimistic.
- The Enemy: You can say that all you want. Only doing something about it will make it true.
The Enemy makes a winning move. The Fan sighs.
- The Fan: Why is everything always a lecture with you? I spend five minutes away from planning to spend quality time with my brother and you just make it stressful again.
- The Enemy: She sent a scout to Earth. We have to be vigilant if she's making such bold moves.
The Fan nods begrudgingly and stands up, levitating the chess set back onto a shelf. A green portal suddenly appears in the center of the table, startling the brother gods. Palutena emerges, looking stressed out.
- The Enemy: Something gone wrong?
- Palutena: Yeah.
- The Enemy (muttering to The Fan): See?
- Palutena: Someone's created a giant planet in the middle of nowhere and everyone's there. Unten, Needlenam, the lady with the tattoos... they're all stuck there.
- The Fan: The Threat has to be up to something now.
- Palutena: None of us are sure it was her work, though. The Gypsy and I are trying to figure it out, but there's no telltale signs and Dare's not showing up.
The Fan groans.
- The Fan: I swear, if he's pulling one over on us...
- Palutena: No time to spend groaning. We need to do some divine intervention.
- The Enemy: On it.
Palutena drops back into her portal. The Fan and The Enemy follow along.
Chapter 1: Pushing Downwards
Part 1: Awakening
Unten is fast asleep in a large antique bed, under a heavy quilt. He looks upset and frightened.
- Unten (mumbling in his sleep): Grime... Grime's... the drill...
Unten shudders and his eyes jolt open. He's breathing heavily. He positions himself upright and looks up at the celing.
- Unten: I really can't keep waking up like this... panic attacks probably aren't good morning routines.
Unten gets up, adjusting his scarf. The wooden floors creak as he walks.
- Unten: Maybe it'd help if I kept a dream journal?
Unten yawns. He looks down at the floor and stops walking.
- Unten: Rachel's apartment doesn't have... wooden...
Unten looks at the bed. It's not the couch he usually sleeps on.
- Unten: Where am I?
Unten opens the door. There's several identical doorways down a long hallway with a staircase at the end.
- Unten: ...hello?
Unten walks down the hall. All the rooms are either empty or locked.
- Unten: This has to be another dream. Maybe locked doors are like... bad memories? That sounds like something subconsciouses would do.
Unten walks down the stairs.
- Unten: So am I lucid dreaming now?
Unten closes his eyes and holds out his hand. The beautiful gold stopwatch he imagines is not in the palm of his stubby hand.
- Unten (confused and disappointed): Aww.
Unten reaches the bottom of the stairs. Rachel is waiting at the desk for something, tapping her fingers on the wooden surface impatiently.
- Unten: Hey, Rachel!
Rachel looks over and smiles, walking over to Unten.
- Rachel: There you are. I figured you'd be around here somewhere.
- Unten: So... wait, am I still dreaming? Or is this like, a collective dream?
- Rachel: Nah, this is all very real. A bunch of people woke up here and no one knows what's going on. It's really freaky... just like, this old medieval town with no one else in it but us.
- Unten: Define "a bunch".
Rachel points to the window. Unten looks outside at a crowd that has formed in the town. Looking worried, he pulls at his scarf.
- Rachel: I'm trying to see if anyone works at this inn, but... so far, nothing. It's too pristine to be abandoned and too creepy to imagine anyone willingly working this job.
- Unten: Should we go outside and look for answers?
- Rachel: Crowd's pretty rowdy. You remember Leah?
- Unten: ...hm...
- Rachel: Purple hair, bad attitude, helped us out back in the desert before totally ditching us? She's here too, and she's being... confrontational.
- Unten: Maybe I can talk some sense into her.
- Rachel: You're welcome to try.
Unten nods and takes a deep breath, swinging open the inn's doors.
Part 2: Meet and Greet
Leah Needlenam sits slumped against a fountain in the town's courtyard, sifting through her pockets and pulling out several spare needle fingers.
- Leah: Let's see, we got... anaesthesia, poison, couple of blood samples... nothing to drink, though?
Leah looks up at the sky and groans.
- Leah: What was I even doing that required all that and not something to calm my nerves?
Leah ponders for a moment. Iron Mask and Reese walk by her and she stuffs her needle fingers in her pocket. The two stop in front of her and she narrows her eyes.
- Reese: You alright? You've been sitting over here since we all got out of the inn.
- Leah: I'm fine.
- Iron Mask: You keep getting all snippy with people when they walk over here...
- Leah: When have I ever done that?!
Iron Mask backs up a bit, trying to look passive. Reese sits down next to Leah and she frowns.
- Reese: If you need someone to talk to, there's a bunch of people around here who'd be happy to help.
- Leah: Step off, Reese.
Leah leans away from Reese and he stands up, shrugging to Iron Mask. The two walk off as Leah mutters to herself. Reese looks a little confused.
- Reese: Wait... did I ever introduce myself to her?
- Iron Mask: You must have forgotten already. Rachel said her name was... uh... Leia Needlesomethin', right?
Unten shuffles through the crowd, bumping into several people taller than him.
- Unten: Sorry, excuse me, just... comin' through.
Unten is distracted by this apology and runs into a man with teal hair and a scuffed-up jacket.
- Unten: Oh, so sorry about this, I-
- Strafe: Wait a minute, I recognize you!
- Unten: You do?
- Strafe: You're that alien crash-landed out near Noah a while back. I wanted to stay and talk, but Leah just insisted we get out...
- Unten: Oh. Well... we got taken by the government not too long after, so... maybe she was right to get you outta there.
Strafe laughs a bit.
- Strafe: With what I went through? Being locked up where a bunch of cannibals can't get to me sounds nice.
Unten laughs awkwardly, rubbing the back of his neck. Strafe extends his hand and Unten shakes it.
- Strafe: Name's Strafe. I figure we'll be stuck here a while until anyone finds us, so if you want to talk about... I dunno, alien stuff? We can talk.
- Unten: Well I was gonna go tell Leah to... I dunno, not be confrontational?
Strafe laughs hysterically to himself before realizing Unten is serious.
- Strafe: She's... look, she's not the type to back down easily. Very stubborn, very hard to get to know unless you're literally the only person she has left to talk to.
- Unten: Doesn't give her an excuse to be a jerk to everyone else stuck here.
- Strafe: Trust me. Between you and me... I think she's mad her crush isn't here.
- Unten: Still.
- Strafe: I'm telling you, dude. She's not gonna listen right now.
- Unten: Well... what am I supposed to do now?
- Unten: Right. Well... I'll be back to talk about alien stuff in a minute, but... first I'm gonna go grab something from my room.
- Strafe: Fine by me.
Unten walks off, clearly heading towards Leah and not the inn.
- Strafe: What a bad liar.
Strafe looks up at the stars, chuckling. He squints and closes one eye.
- Strafe: Hm.
Leah snaps her fingers, humming something to herself as she breathes deeply. She notices something blue out of the corner of her eye and looks to see Unten approaching.
- Leah (mumbling): Oh god, time to meet this jackass all over again.
Leah closes her eyes and takes a deep breath.
- Leah: Showtime, Needlenam. Maybe this go around is better.
Unten walks up to Leah, stumbling a bit. Leah snickers to herself and Unten looks a little embarrassed.
- Unten: Hey, uh, Leah...
- Leah: Who told you my name, you walking blueberry muffin?
- Unten ...Rachel.
- Leah: And what do you need me for?
- Unten: I was told by... some people...
- Leah: Rachel.
- Unten: ...that you were being a little needlessly rude.
- Leah: Yeah, figures she'd say that after what I said when she walked over.
Unten frowns, rubbing his forehead.
- Unten: We're all equally stuck here, okay? If you could just cooperate and-
- Leah: And do what? Form a human ladder over the walls? Try punching through bricks?
- Unten: No, but maybe if you were being helpful we could find an actual solution.
- Leah: I got kidnapped, put in the world's shittiest renaissance fair, and I don't even have anything to distract me while we sit around doing fucking nothing. Excuse me if I come off as a bit too crude after all that.
- Unten: The sooner you stop, the sooner we get out, right?
Leah sighs and stands up.
- Leah: Let's get one thing all cleared up before I try standing over there with all the other alien weirdos, okay? You're not in charge of this. I might be. I'm not sure yet. But you can't just appoint yourself leader every time.
- Unten: Was there a... last time...?
- Leah: What? No, no, it was a figure of speech.
- Unten: Alright, I guess. C'mon, let's go find our way out.
Unten walks off, seemingly optimistic. Leah follows behind him and groans.
Part 3: Labyrinth
Unten and Leah stand in the middle of the crowd. Unten looks around and rubs his chin.
- Unten: How do we get their attention...?
Leah clears her throat and hoists herself up on Unten's shoulders.
- Leah: HEY, FREAKSHOWS! OVER HERE!
The crowd turns to Unten. Leah hops off his shoulders and pats him on the back.
- Leah: This is one of those situations where you get to be in charge, Teddy Grahams.
- Unten: You know my name is Unten, right...?
Leah shrugs and pushes Unten ahead of her. The crowd seems reasonably upset by Leah's comment.
- Iron Mask: Why are you two being jerks to everyone, huh? Blue bear calling us' freakshows.
- Unten: That was all her, I don't condone it!
- Volt: Yeah, well... she still said it...
Leah doesn't seem to care too much.
- Unten: I was trying to get your attention, it was Leah who made it all rude and judgmental. Now, if we could just talk things out-
Thorn steps forward, twirling a knife between her fingers.
- Thorn: Who are you calling a freakshow, needles?
- Leah: Like you're really gonna start a fight here. Yeah, right.
- Thorn: You wanna go, punk? Because me? I'm ready to go.
- Unten (mumbling): Could you not?
Thorn pulls out another knife. Strafe steps in between the two.
- Strafe: Limehead, cool it. You too, Leah.
- Thorn: My name is-
The sudden sound of bells chiming rings in the air. The crowd looks up at what seems to be a giant inactive clock tower.
- Leah: What the hell?
The group hears loud muttering. Thorn grabs more knives and looks around the empty town.
- Leah: What the hell?
The buildings go aglow, fireplaces lit inside. Incredibly nondescrepit purple humanoids, maybe a couple feet tall, come out of the buildings, surrounding the crowd.
- Leah: Seriously, what the HELL?
- Bearded purple humanoid: These must be the visitors!
The bearded purple humanoid scurries to the front of the crowd, tossing aside his cane and shaking Unten's hand with two of his own.
- Unten: Uh... hello.
- Grandpappy Keeple: Sorry to have left you standing, Redd didn't tell us you'd be here so soon. We're the Keeple of this town, but you can call me Grandpappy Keeple. I'm here to show you around!
- Unten: Great! Great. Could you start by telling us where we are?
- Grandpappy Keeple: Labyrinth.
- Strafe: Like... Labyrinth, ... I dunno, Kentucky? Or is Labyrinth like, a weird little country?
- Grandpappy Keeple: Labyrinth. Plain and simple.
- Unten: Yes, but where on Earth is Labyrinth?
- Grandpappy Keeple: What's Earth?
Unten has a dreadful expression on his face.
- Unten: So... Labyrinth is a planet.
- Grandpappy Keeple: Best dang ol' planet there is!
- Strafe (muttering): Please don't tell me I was right.
- Unten: Right about what?
Strafe looks up at the stars again.
- Strafe: He's not bluffing. If we were on Earth, we could see some constellations.
Leah walks over to Strafe's side.
- Leah: He's... actually right. Orion isn't there.
- Strafe: When did you learn to be such an astronomer?
- Leah: X-Ray likes stargazing. You?
- Strafe: Makes navigation easier.
- Unten: That can't be right, though. We wouldb't just not notice being sent through space.
- Grandpappy Keeple: No time to worry about where it is you are! Follow me, I'll show you around town.
Grandpappy Keeple walks off. Unten looks at Strafe and Leah.
- Unten: Well... guess we know where we are?
- Strafe: I'll go tell Rachel.
- Leah: Me and Ursa Major here will follow the bearded guy.
- Unten: Hey, that doesn't sound too bad.
- Leah: It fits, because Ursa Major loser! HA! 10 points to me for that one! Jack, high-five.
Strafe walks off. Leah high-fives herself and passes by Unten, who seems a bit angry and a bit sad.
Part 4: Venture Forth
Strafe walks into the inn, where Rachel is talking to one of the Keeple. This one has on a little business suit.
- Rachel: Yeah, but where am I?
- Inn Keeple: The inn!
- Rachel: Could you be more specific?
- Inn Keeple: The lobby of the inn!
- Strafe: Rachel, that Unten guy found out where we are...
- Rachel: And?
- Strafe: It's... well, let's sit down and talk.
Rachel pulls up one of the armchairs and sits down. Strafe sits down and tries to think of how to break the news.
- Strafe: We're... on another planet.
Rachel looks equal parts scared and unconvinced.
- Rachel: I would have noticed if someone took me to space.
- Strafe: Yeah, you'd think that, but even Leah's buying it.
Rachel goes a little pale with fear.
- Rachel: So... we're not on Earth.
Strafe nods, looking like he really doesn't want to be the one telling her this. Rachel gets up, her chair falling over, and storms out the door.
- Inn Keeple: ...would either of you like a "do not disturb" sign?
- Strafe: We're already being pretty damn disturbed here, little guy.
The Inn Keeple slides Strafe a "do not disturb" door hanger. Strafe, trying to be polite, awkwardly stuffs it in his jacket pocket and heads out the door.
Unten and Leah follow Grandpappy Keeple around town, looking at various medieval buildings. Grandpappy Keeple points to one and coughs.
- Grandpappy Keeple: And this one here is the tavern! Bar Keeple, he loves his work.
- Leah: Oh, cool. Unten, you can just drop me off here and lemme know when someone builds a spaceship.
Unten seems distracted by something. He points to the other side of town, where a large ornate door sits under a tower.
- Unten: What's up with that?
- Grandpappy Keeple: We haven't gotten to that part of the tour yet, silly!
- Unten: Yes, but I can easily come back for the rest of it later, so...
Unten walks to the huge door. Leah shrugs and follows.
- Grandpappy Keeple: Nobody ever listens to wise ol' Grandpappy!
Grandpappy Keeple scampers after the two.
Rachel tries to find leverage in the stony walls around the town. Strafe walks up to her and sighs.
- Strafe: Rachel, look...
- Rachel: I'm gonna get answers, Strafe. I'm gonna find whoever did all this and get back home.
- Strafe: I don't think trying to climb the walls is the right answer.
- Rachel: Don't you know sometimes you have to take a little action?
- Strafe: Yeah, I do!
Strafe puts a hand on Rachel's shoulder.
- Strafe: But I've also learned that sometimes you have to wait for solutions to come to you. I mean... I was in a rough patch for years, waiting and waiting for a good opportunity, and... now I'm here, I guess.
Rachel nods and leans against the wall, sighing.
- Rachel: Never thought too hard about how growing up in Noah must have felt.
- Strafe: It's not the best place on Earth.
- Rachel: I've had my share of bad memories, but... right now, I need to get to Robyn.
- Strafe: The kid you were travelling with? With those goggles?
- Rachel: I adopted her, and... she's leaving to go to some fancy school in a few weeks. I've been doing my best to turn my life around, and a big part of that is being a responsible guardian, being there for her.
- Strafe: Well... we'll figure this out. That Unten guy seems like a natural leader, right? He can get us out.
Rachel nods. She hugs Strafe and wipes some tears from her eyes.
- Rachel: Thanks, Strafe.
Strafe seems a little flustered. Suddenly, Leah walks by the two, snapping her fingers at Strafe.
- Leah: Jack! C'mon, no time to get all cozy with miss mystical destiny tattoos. Me and the not-so-grizzly bear are gonna check out that weird door.
Strafe looks over at the door.
- Strafe: Sounds like the kind of place we might find answers in.
- Leah: That's the spirit.
- Rachel: I'll tag along too.
- Leah: What do you have, though?
- Rachel: Uh... what do you mean?
- Leah: I have needles, Strafe's good with guns, I'm assuming the alien can do something... if we run into danger, you're gonna be the first one out.
- Rachel: I've been learning self-defense stuff lately.
- Leah: Good enough. Come on.
The four walk off, Unten trailing behind a little.
- Unten: There's not gonna be any danger, right?
As the group walks offscreen, Grandpappy Keeple walks into frame.
- Grandpappy Keeple (muttering): Can't let 'em go in yet, far too dangerous...
Part 5: BeOrN???
A dark, dusty room with topaz-lined walls remains eerily quiet for a moment. Leah swings open the massive doors, dust stirring and creatures scampering in the distance.
- Leah: Let's see... anything good in here?
Leah walks down some stairs, looking around.
- Leah: Too damn shadowy down here.
- Unten: I can see pretty alright.
- Leah: Oh, really? Is that your heroic alien power? Seeing in the dark "pretty alright"?
- Unten: No, I just have pretty good eyesight. Had this whole adventure underground once... kinda gotta pick up that skill for that.
- Strafe: Sounds cool. Think we'll ever get to visit?
Unten stops dead in his tracks, Rachel bumping into him. She motions for Strafe to shut up and huddles up with Unten.
- Rachel: You don't have to talk about it if you aren't ready to open up to them.
Unten looks like he's about to say something, but nods weakly instead.
- Rachel: Can I tell them?
- Unten: I mean... I guess.
- Rachel: Strafe, where Unten comes from... it isn't there anymore. Someone used a drill, and it just kind of fell apart, I think.
- Strafe: ...sorry to bring it up.
- Unten: It's fine, it's fine. I'm trying to get better about dealing with it and the only way to do that is to make an effort to just... open up, y'know?
- Rachel: He's made a lot of progress living with me.
- Leah: You two live together? Jeez, didn't think you'd be into short blue chumps.
Rachel frowns a bit as the group heads further into the room.
- Rachel: We aren't dating, Leah. Unten just needs some help getting used to Earth.
- Leah: Yeah, Earth and its people who don't look like weird bears. Must be nice getting with someone with opposable fingers, huh?
- Unten: Leah!
Leah makes a vaguely obscene gesture and laughs. Unten disapprovingly pushes Leah lightly. She stumbles onto a strange chest, made from purple wood with a strange energy surrounding it.
- Leah: Nice, finally something good around here! Jack, come pick this lock.
- Strafe: I don't know how to pick locks, Leah.
- Leah: C'mon, we all know you grew up in a city of thieves, right? You don't have to lie to make yourself look all heroic.
Strafe kicks up some dust and grumbles.
- Strafe (grumbling): Yeah, okay, you're right.
Strafe holds out his hand and Leah gives him an empty needle finger. He tries to pick the lock, but the energy around the chest manifests as a purple eye, gazing judgmentally. Violet flames light up on the walls and the doors lock behind the team.
- Unten: You can't just mess with weird loot, Leah!
- Leah: I totally can! It just might lead to some people being put in danger.
Creatures that look like lizard heads with bat wings and rats' tails attached fly out of holes in the ceiling that seal themselves. Unten holds them away with short bursts of lightning and the group stays around him.
- Leah: These are some weird, fucked-up cave beasts. Like, lizards? Okay.
Strafe shoots down a couple of the Chimeraheads.
- Strafe: Not the time for observational comments, Leah!
- Leah: Bats and rats? Also good choices.
Leah grabs one of the Chimeraheads and stabs it with her needle finger.
- Leah: But all three? No. That's bullshit. Make up your goddamn minds, cave critters.
Leah dropkicks the Chimerahead.
- Rachel: Guys? My self-defense classes aren't really meant for flying heads.
Unten turns to Rachel, who's using both hands to push one back. He zaps it and Rachel gives him a thumbs up.
- Rachel: I catch 'em, you hit 'em?
- Unten: Sounds good.
Rachel wrangles up a couple more and Unten shocks them. Strafe shoots down the last bunch and exhales.
- Strafe: Good work, guys.
- Leah: So, what's in the chest?
Leah opens the chest and pulls out some olive-colored clothes and a yellow scarf.
- Leah: Dibs.
- Strafe: Doesn't seem like your usual look.
- Leah: We just fought monsters in a cave and got treasure. Might as well wear appropriate attire for this RPG Final Fantasy dungeon shit, right?
- Unten: Anything else?
Leah pulls out a bag of money.
- Leah: Also dibs.
- Strafe: You did the least fighting!
- Rachel: How about we split it evenly?
Leah rolls her eyes and gives Rachel the bag. Unten wanders over and presses a hand against the wall, apparently activating something. Another staircase downward is revealed.
- Strafe: Should have figured there'd be more.
- Unten: Should we go?
Rachel heads up the stairs and checks the entrance.
- Rachel: The door out is still locked.
- Leah: Oh boy, locked in a dungeon with you three for god knows how long.
- Strafe: No use in complaining now.
Strafe heads down the steps. Leah and Rachel reluctantly follow, and Unten looks back over his shoulder as he heads down, the violet flames disappearing.
After several more fairly easy dungeons full of Chimeraheads, the four arrive in a dim circular room with a far larger chest in the center. Rachel sets down the loot the four have amassed and looks around.
- Rachel: Seems like the last room.
- Leah: Finally! I need something to eat... they should really put in something down here. Like halfway through. You fight through your share of monsters, you deserve at least a salad bar or something.
- Strafe: Well, there's no monsters in here... do we have to pick the locks again?
- Leah: Duh. Then there's probably some bigger weird monster you gotta hit harder, given how predictable this has been so far.
Strafe goes to pick the lock and the whole room suddenly shifts, the ring of topaz in the walls rotating. Something incredibly tall and skinny with glowing eyes drops down from the ceiling and Strafe pulls out his gun.
- ???: Be...OrN...
Unten is caught off guard, visibly unsettled.
- ???: OoNtAn... BeOrN.
- Unten: W-what are you?
The creature steps out from the shadows, extending two tube-like arms.
- Oontan: We ArE oOnTaN!
Oontan lets out one last shriek as Unten delivers a final blow to the chest. His body evaporates into purple flame that flickers out, and Unten stands in the middle of the room, clearly disheveled. Rachel runs up and holds his arm, barely getting a response.
- Rachel: Are you alright?
Unten is shaking a bit. A door appears in front of the four and Strafe opens it. Somehow, it leads back into the inn.
- Strafe: C'mon, buddy. You need to get some rest.
Rachel drags Unten through the door, Strafe following behind. Leah carries the loot pile with her, a few bags of money falling off the heap.
- Leah: Is no one gonna hold the door for me? And you call me rude.
Strafe and Rachel sit at the tavern, Rachel eating some pork chops.
- Strafe: So... Unten.
- Rachel: Let's let him be for now. Seeing something like that really hit him hard.
- Strafe: Something like that? It was some kind of fucked up copy of him. There's definitely someone who put us here for a reason.
- Rachel: Let's see... so we're trapped in a medieval town, and whoever built it knows who Unten is.
- Strafe: The little purple guys?
- Rachel: Hm... maybe. But how could they get us all here?
- Strafe: Well... hm. Good question.
Strafe glances down at Rachel's plate.
- Strafe: And how would they get regular old porkchops?
- Rachel: ...huh.
- Strafe: We'll ask the townsfolk about it in the morning.
- Rachel: And if they are behind this, and don't take kindly to us asking?
- Strafe: We beat 'em up.
Strafe and Rachel high-five. The chapter ends with a cut to Unten, sitting in bed, with his eyes wide open.
Chapter 2: One-Way Glass
Part 1: Interrogative Intiative
Strafe yawns as he walks out the door of the inn. Rachel is already in the courtyard waiting for him.
- Rachel: Rise and shine, Strafe!
- Strafe: Listen. Like, just for a second. I know we're busy with something, but those beds are like, the most comfortable thing I've ever slept on.
- Rachel: Well, you're not sleeping now. You're up, about, and ready for answers, right?
Rachel gives Strafe a thumbs up. Strafe nods groggily and follows as Rachel heads off.
- Rachel: So, where to ask first?
- Strafe: Hm... well, where's like... the little bearded guy? He seemed to be the one who knew stuff about this place.
- Rachel: Little bearded guy, huh? Well, where would he be?
- Strafe: Hrm... clocktower, maybe?
- Rachel: Well, let's head in there.
- Strafe: Sure, sure, just... give me a minute to wake up.
- Rachel: Strafe. C'mon.
Strafe lightly slaps his face and takes a deep breath.
- Strafe: Fine, fine, I'm awake.
The two head off to the clocktower, Strafe lagging behind Rachel a bit.
Leah sits at the tavern. Grandpappy Keeple walks in and climbs up one of the bar seats, sitting down next to her.
- Leah: Woah, didn't take you for the type to have a couple of drinks.
- Grandpappy Keeple: Oh, I'm not. Us Keeple don't need food or drink, just good rest.
- Leah: Then why do you have food or drinks?
- Grandpappy Keeple: Redd didn't want you to starve, silly! Now then, about-
- Leah: Hold up, whiskers. I have a few questions. Who the hell's Redd and why did they put us all here to go through some weird dungeon?
- Grandpappy Keeple: All excellent points of discussion, miss Needlenam! Redd is... I remember Redd faintly. Kind soul, built this whole place just for you folks, gave me and the Keeple life. The dungeons were a part of... some plan involving you, I think?
- Leah: So Redd's like, a god.
- Grandpappy Keeple: You could say that and not be too far off the mark, yes.
- Leah: Did Redd ever intend to, y'know... get us off this rock?
- Grandpappy Keeple: If you finish the dungeons. I saw you entered already, and... well, you're here to talk to ol' Grandpappy now, so I think you can handle it.
- Leah: Well, I certainly can. Berenstain freaked out because we saw some hideous thing that kind of looked like him, I think?
- Grandpappy Keeple: Oh yes, the imitations. Redd wanted to give each of you a foe, a reflection of equal power. Thing is... Redd's not the best creator. I mean, I was supposed to have a full head of hair!
Grandpappy Keeple laughs heartily.
- Leah: Is there any fucked up me down there?
- Grandpappy Keeple: Maybe! You'll just have to find out, won't you?
- Leah: Sure, sure. Thanks for the info.
Leah gets up from the bar and walks away. Grandpappy Keeple tries to get down but can't due to his short stature.
- Grandpappy Keeple: Ah, fiddlesticks. Bar Keeple, can you help me?
Bar Keeple steps off his stepladder and helps Grandpappy Keeple down. The two nod at each other and Grandpappy Keeple walks away.
Part 2: Hex
The Fan and The Enemy fly over the surface of Labyrinth. There's nothing but barren land as far as the eye can see.
- The Fan: Did The Threat build... a desert...?
- The Enemy: Maybe she expects them to starve to death.
- The Fan: Hmm... maybe.
Palutena catches up with the two via portal.
- Palutena: There's nothing here but rocks and sand.
- The Enemy: Are you sure?
Palutena rolls her eyes and holds up her staff, scanning the horizon.
- Palutena: More dust to the west... the south... some nice looking rocks east... and...
Palutena seems surprised.
- Palutena: A town! A small town, north of here. Some kind of shield, but nothing I can't handle.
- The Fan: Let's head in.
Palutena opens a portal and the three rush through.
Strafe and Rachel wander the inside of the clocktower. They're several floors up and there's no sound except their footsteps and the creaking floors.
- Strafe: I don't think he's up here.
- Rachel: Yeah, probably not.
- Strafe: So... why are we still walking?
- Rachel: I dunno, I just like this building. I mean, I prefer the kind of buildings back home, but... I want to see the bright side to all this. When will I get to explore an old-timey clocktower again?
Strafe shrugs and follows along. Rachel puts her hands on a rusted gear, trying to push it to no avail.
- Rachel: Wonder how long ago this all broke.
- Strafe: Seems like ages.
Strafe tries helping her push but the gear won't budge. Rachel sighs and sits down.
- Strafe: You alright?
- Rachel: Just a lot on my mind. Robyn and all...
- Strafe: It's not your fault you're here.
- Rachel: What if it is, though? I have no idea where I got these tattoos, but... they told me to find Unten and I did. Everyone here seems to have done something.
- Strafe: Well, where were you before that?
- Rachel: Dead end job.
- Strafe: And now?
- Rachel: In a clocktower...?
- Strafe: You're a good mom, with good friends, whose seen all sorts of things no dead end job could give you.
Rachel smiles. Strafe hugs her and pulls her up.
- Rachel: Thanks, Strafe.
The two hear something and look down. Leah comes in.
- Leah: Rachel? Jack? You know there's private inn rooms, right?
- Strafe: We were having a conversation, Leah!
- Leah: Sure! Anyways, I talked to the weird townsfolk and got a few juicy answers. Come down, I'm organizing an important meeting. Real important stufg, courtesy of me and my great leadership skills.
Strafe and Rachel look at each other and start heading down.
The gods arrive in town. Volt floats by the three and The Fan steps ahead of the other two.
- The Fan: Hello, citizen. I am a... traveller! Looking for answers as to where we are.
Volt keeps on. The Fan looks utterly confused.
- The Fan: Hello?
The Fan steps in front of Volt. Volt shudders as he walks through him and he backs away.
- Volt: What the-? That felt... eugh...
Volt shrugs and continues, The Fan moving out of his way.
- The Fan: What's going on here?
- The Enemy: Wait a minute... Palutena, was the shield magical or physical?
- Palutena: Magical.
- The Enemy: Then it wasn't a shield at all. It's a hex. One I created.
- The Fan: Then how come the Sparkling wasn't invisible?
- The Enemy: It works on our godly energy, not our corporeal forms.
- Palutena: So someone was expecting us.
- The Fan: First trapping important figures of power here, then using our own power against us!
- The Enemy: Honestly? The Threat might be too proud to copy our hexes.
- The Fan: Palutena, can you reincarnate into a more mortal body?
- Palutena: That's way too inconvinient! I'd have to create a form, live out a few decades... let's try something else first.
- The Fan: Let's get out of here to plan. I get the feeling whoever did all this could still see us from town...
The three create a portal and head back to Kolob. The scene pans down, cutting to a dark room lit by streaks of blue light. Someone sits in a meditative position in the center.
- ???: They're here... hrm...
Whoever it is stands up, dusting off their shoulders.
Part 3: Spelunking
Leah sits down in a booth at the tavern. Several people have gathered around her, with Rachel and Strafe sitting across from her.
- Leah: So... I got some info. Intel. Dirt. Etcetera.
- Rachel: And this info is...?
Leah pauses for a moment. Rachel looks annoyed.
- Leah: We have to go through all the shitty dungeons here to leave. Someone named Redd built this whole place and all the weird little people, and they'll only put us back home if we get through the whole thing.
- Rachel: And how far down do the dungeons go?
- Leah: There's also weird clones of some of us.
- Strafe: Like that tall Unten with the bony legs and the tube arms?
- Leah: Yep.
- Rachel: Well... if we have to finish the dungeon, there's no time to waste.
- Strafe: But Unten's still resting...
- Leah: Who says we need him? You there, pink guy.
Iron Mask points at himself.
- Leah: Yeah, you. Wanna be new fourth in our motley crew of jackasses?
- Rachel: Don't insult me like that, Leah.
- Leah: Look, if it makes you feel any better, I'm, by association, also insulting myself, except not really because as head chairwoman of the group I'm rescinding that statement.
- Iron Mask: I can come along if Leah stops being like this.
- Leah: Okay, so, NEW new fourth...
- Strafe: Leah, c'mon.
- Leah: Look, if the walking cotton candy-
- Iron Mask: My name is Iron Mask.
- Leah: If phantom of the opera over here doesn't want to come along, then just let him not come along!
- Strafe: Well... look, Iron Mask, can you tolerate her for long enough to head in?
- Iron Mask: ...fine. Don't expect me to just sit around being insulted, though. I have experience leading a team and I want that to be respected.
- Leah: Mhm, sure.
- Rachel: I'm gonna go check on Unten before we head in.
Rachel exits the tavern.
- Leah: Let's head in without her.
- Strafe and Iron Mask (in unison): No.
Unten lays around in bed, staring at the ceiling. He hears a knock on the door and sits up.
- Unten (groaning): Come in.
Rachel opens the door, walking in. She sits down next to Unten.
- Rachel: Doing any better?
- Unten: I guess.
- Rachel: I get what happened took a lot out of you.
- Unten: I was doing really good these last few weeks, right?
- Rachel: Yeah. You're still doing good. Being reminded like that... what happened doesn't make you weaker.
Unten slumps back in bed. Rachel looks over and pats his back.
- Rachel: A couple of us are heading down into the dungeon again. Leah says apparently finishing those is our ticket out.
- Unten: I'll come along.
- Rachel: Next time. You need rest.
Unten nods and rolls over on his side. Rachel gets up and leaves, and Unten still looks disheveled as he looks back over his shoulder.
Part 4: 1-2-3
The Fan holds a couple of chess pieces in his hand, twirling them between his fingers as he looks to be deep in thought. The Enemy and Palutena sit nearby, both looking a little hesitant to talk and break The Fan's concentration.
- The Fan: Palutena.
Palutena seems a bit relieved.
- The Fan: We should figure out a list of culprits.
- Palutena: Right.
Palutena's staff lets out a beam of light. The Threat's sigil is projected over the table.
- Palutena: The Threat has every reason to want to trap Unten.
- The Enemy: But that planet matches our constructs more than hers, and some of the people there aren't even from Earth.
Palutena taps her staff to the ground and the image warps, a silhoutted figure in a cloak now projected on the table.
- The Fan: Your apprentice could be behind this one, brother.
- The Enemy: What would his motive be, though? Besides, he's off training. I checked in on him not too long ago.
- Palutena: So those two are just potential candidates. But then...
The image warps into one of Dare. The Fan groans.
- The Fan: Dare's my subordinate, he should know better than to go against my plans.
- The Enemy: Hasn't he captured heroes before? Put them through overly elaborate 'trials'?
- Palutena: It'd explain how the planet has hexes designed by The Enemy too.
- The Fan: Well... what about Jirea? Or The M-
- The Enemy: Let's not bring up such irrelevant matters. If it isn't Dare, we can just find out who it is, but right now? It's looking like the blame falls on him.
The Fan sighs.
- The Fan: Fine. So we get down there, interrogate Dare, and...?
- The Enemy: Well... there is a Beorn down there.
- The Fan: Ektaz, let's not jump to descension here.
- The Enemy: ...right, sorry. More of a last resort than a first option.
- Palutena: We can figure out what to do later.
- The Fan: Agreed. Can you warp us to him?
Palutena holds up her staff. A portal begins to form, but quickly fizzles out. Palutena seems a little drained.
- Palutena: Another hex. It's blocking my portals.
- The Enemy: He's persistent.
- The Fan: At least I know my teachings worked...
- Palutena: I can get us back into town, just not any further.
- The Enemy: We can work with that.
The Fan nods and Palutena opens up a portal to Labyrinth. One of the chess pieces on The Fan's board falls onto the table as the vortex slams shut.
Leah, Strafe, and Iron Mask wait by the Labyrinth doors with Grandpappy Keeple, waiting for Rachel. Leah looks impatient, crossing her arms.
- Leah: Jeez, how long can she take? It's not like talking to Untedious is that interesting.
- Strafe: Maybe she's getting supplies. Maybe some ammo for this little masterpiece...
Strafe reaches for his gun and realizes he doesn't have it.
- Strafe: ...where's my gun?
Rachel walks up to the group, handing Strafe his gun.
- Rachel: You forgot this back at the inn.
- Leah: Jeez, how forgetful can you be, Jack?
- Strafe: Just a minute ago you were being like this towards Rachel!
- Leah: Yeah, but it turns out what was bugging me with her was really your fault, so... simple as that.
- Iron Mask: Are you three going to stop bickering and head in?
- Leah: He's right. We'll have plenty of time to bicker in there.
- Grandpappy Keeple: You four be careful now!
- Strafe: We will, little guy.
Strafe pats Grandpappy Keeple on the head and kicks open the doors. The four head in and Grandpappy Keeple walks off.
- Grandpappy Keeple: Sure would be helpful if I could give them any sort of advice, I bet!
The camera lingers on the doors for a while. Footsteps are heard and the doors slam shut.
- The Fan (voice only): Alright, let's get going.
Part 5: DeMiGoD!
Leah shoves open the doors to a dark room, the rest of the group following behind her. Unnaturally huge pearls line the walls and a metal clanging can be heard coming from below the floor.
- Leah: Talk about mood setting, am I right? Whoever the hell 'Redd' is sure knows how to build some abstract shit.
- Iron Mask: Yeah, this whole room just feels... eerie.
- Rachel: It's just ambient noise. Whatever happens, we can handle it, right?
- Leah: I wasn't saying I can't handle it. If you want "not handling it", you should probably talk to Jack.
Rachel glances her shoulder at Strafe. He seems a little on edge and exhausted.
- Rachel: Strafe, are you alright?
- Strafe: H-huh? Oh, absolutely. I'm just kind of exhausted.
- Rachel: Sounds like you need more sleep.
- Strafe: No, it's just... being here feels kind of draining. I'm not sure why.
- Iron Mask: We can head back up if you want.
- Strafe: I'm fine, let's just push forward.
- Leah: That's the spirit! Besides, even if we wanted to ditch Jack, the doors are locked.
Iron Mask looks over his shoulder at the door. He shrugs and continues walking next to Rachel.
- Iron Mask (whispering): Hey, so... is his name Jack or Strafe? Jack sounds more believable, but only Leah seems to call him that.
- Rachel: It's Strafe... probably. Could be a pseudonym.
- Strafe: It is! That's what my parents named me.
- Leah: It's Jack. Trust me.
The camera pans away as the group walks forward, continuing to argue about Strafe's name. The scene switches to the perspective of the gods.
- Palutena: That name really was Lock's idea more than mine, you know.
- The Fan: Is he okay? He seemed fatigued, and I mean... the whole possession thing back in the old universe...
- The Enemy: He's Palutena's son. Even though that happened in a mortal incarnation... maybe that godly lineage makes him a little vulnerable to the same hexes we're under?
- Palutena: Whatever's going on, I don't like seeing him so worn out. He's usually so determined...
- The Fan: That's just one of those things that's always been the same, I suppose.
- The Enemy: Let's keep moving. If something's going on with Strafe, we need to make sure he remains stable. Very important person in the grand scheme of the universe.
- Palutena: Does being a part of your war take priority over being my kid?
- The Fan: Of course not!
- The Enemy: That wasn't what I was trying to imply at all.
- Palutena: Good.
Palutena floats off after the heroes. The Fan and The Enemy sigh, relieved, and follow after her.
Leah enters yet another room in the dungeon. She notices a leech with a pearl-like shell trying to gnaw on her shoe and grabs it, tossing it over her shoulder. Iron Mask, clearly trailing behind her, cuts the leech in half and walks up next to Leah.
- Iron Mask: You can't keep rushing ahead of us like that. It's too risky.
- Leah: I try and trail behind and get told I'm not doing enough. I go ahead of the group and get told I'm acting too risky. I'm getting some real mixed signals here.
- Iron Mask: Then just stick with the group, okay?
- Leah: Counterpoint: I don't like doing that.
Leah heads down some stairs as Iron Mask frustratedly adjusts his mask and groans. Strafe and Rachel follow along.
- Rachel: Same sort of room the weird Unten duplicate was in...
- Leah: Honestly? Part of me is excited to see what Redd thinks of me.
The metal clanging grows louder. Strafe grabs his gun and looks around.
- Leah: Oh, maybe a giant metal needle? Really cutting edge commentary on me, Redd! That's my defining trait as a person! Definitely!
A metal arm breaks through the ground and a tall humanoid pulls itself up. It has glowing white eyes under a head of incredibly messy blue hair, and barbed wire wrapped around its limbs. Leah backs up, looking more prepared to fight.
- ???: I aM zTrUfE!
- Leah: Oh, so that's what's up.
- Strafe: Monster bastard wants to steal my name, huh?
Strafe fires a few shots at Ztrufe, distracting it from Leah.
- Strafe: It's me you wanna fight!
- Ztrufe: DeMiGoD!!
Ztrufe vanishes into a burst of purple flames, ashes falling back down into the hole it emerged from. Strafe looks down at what's left.
- Rachel: You okay?
- Strafe: Yeah. Doesn't quite have the same sting Unten's might have.
- Iron Mask: It called you a demigod... right? Did I just make that up?
- Strafe: Well... it's complicated. My mom's... she's a goddess, but I don't think she was really a full-on goddess when I was born?
- Rachel: Wait, really? We've been here for a day and you never thought that might be something to bring up?
- Strafe: I mean, I wouldn't have brought it up if it wasn't relevant right now. It's...
- Strafe: My dad was an awful person. Leah can vouch for that.
Everyone turns to Leah. She nods once, quickly.
- Strafe: He killed my mother. Went on to try and hurt even more people.
- Rachel: Oh... that's...
- Strafe: I'm okay right now. Let's just... not talk about it so I can keep feeling okay.
Rachel nods. A door appears at the end of the room, just like last time.
- Leah: Alright, another step closer to getting the fuck off this miserable planet!
Leah heads for the door, everyone else following along. Strafe stops for a moment and looks behind him before walking in.
The camera pans away to show Palutena, her eyes closed tightly. The Fan and The Enemy arrive in the room but see her, clearly upset, and back away.
Chapter 3: Blood, Sweat, Vast Cosmic Energy, and Tears
Part 1: Recovery
Unten sits around in bed, repeatedly laying on one side and then turning over, trying to get comfortable. Rachel walks in and he settles.
- Rachel: Feeling any better?
Unten pauses for a moment.
- Unten: Yeah, I think so.
- Rachel: It's fine if you aren't.
- Unten: Well... finding out who did all this would be the best resolution, right? So let's find who did this.
- Rachel: If you think that's gonna help you recover...
Unten pulls himself up out of bed and stretches his arms.
- Unten: I think it will. Thanks for checking in on me.
- Rachel: No problem. We gotta look out for each other, right?
- Unten: Right.
Rachel smiles at Unten and walks out of the room. Unten looks nervous, rubbing his forehead as he follows her down the hall.
Unten and Rachel stand next to the doors to the dungeon, Rachel looking a bit impatient.
- Rachel: Leah's gonna show up, right?
- Unten: Probably. Seems to love joining us and taking all the stuff we collect...
Leah walks up, Grandpappy Keeple next to her.
- Leah: Well now you just look like a smug asshole, because I'm staying up here.
- Unten: Oh, well... sorry about that.
- Leah: No need to apologize, you've already put me in a bad enough mood for it to not mean anything. I'm conducting experiments with some blood samples...
Grandpappy Keeple raises his arm. He's wrapped a ton of bandages around a very small wound.
- Grandpappy Keeple: Leah's gonna do forensics on these ol' bones of mine!
- Leah: You two could make yourselves of use, even. Get me some blood off the next creepy imitation you find.
Leah hands Rachel a few empty syringes.
- Rachel: I'll keep it in mind. Sorry in advance if I can't get close enough to whatever crazed thing shows up.
- Leah: Well, just make sure you're the one handling it. Not trusting a guy with no fingers to handle my medical equipment.
Unten crosses his arms defensively. Leah laughs a little to herself and walks off.
- Leah (walking further away): He gets so self-conscious about that! Why even bother?
Leah laughs to herself, Grandpappy Keeple half-heartedly joining her.
Part 2: See-Through
Strafe sifts through a chest, Unten kneeling down to look at a defeated creature; a strange bird with sharply defined 'edges' and a single eye. The bird squawks at him and he stumbles backwards, looking at Strafe.
- Unten: So the last imitation was of you, huh?
- Strafe: That's just about all there is to it. Nothing for me to say on the matter.
- Unten: Right, right.
- Iron Mask: So that's two so far. Do we know what the final count is?
- Rachel: Well, let's see... me, you, Leah, Reese, those other people...
- Iron Mask: We keep encountering them at set intervals, so maybe that'll help us figure it out.
- Strafe: We could be here all day talking about what might be down there. Why not go find out?
Rachel nods and walks over to Strafe, helping him carry some loot into the next room. Iron Mask chuckles.
- Iron Mask: Guess I should have figured they'd agree on that. They sure are spending a lot of time together here.
- Unten: Yeah, now that you mention it they...
Iron Mask heads off after Strafe and Rachel. Unten stops, looking deep in thought as he rubs his chin.
- Unten: ...they are. Hrm...
Leah sits around in the inn's lobby, twirling some syringes between her fingers. Reese walks in, talking with Volt about something.
- Reese: So, the scarf gives you your powers.
- Volt: Mhm.
- Reese: And if you wore two scarves?
- Volt: Well, there's my sword back home, bit of a family heirloom, and if I use that, then...
Volt stops suddenly, looking worried.
- Volt: Oh crap, the sword's still back on Chargio! And... and I didn't tell anyone to feed my pet! I just disappeared! ...what if people think I'm dead?
- Reese: It's fine, you'll be back home before you know it.
- Leah: Nice priorities there.
Volt frowns. Reese pats him on the back.
- Reese: Don't worry, Jolt, Leah's just a bit confrontational. Let me talk to her.
Reese walks over to sit next to Leah.
- Volt (mumbling): That's... my name's not Jolt...
- Leah: What's your angle?
- Reese: What...?
- Leah: What reason do you have to try and make small talk with me?
- Reese: Well... what reason do I have to not try?
Reese sits down next to Leah, who mumbles to herself a bit.
- Reese: You have anything on your mind? Anything you're worrying about?
- Leah: Guess.
Leah's expression is a little pissed off and a little distraught. Reese awkwardly rubs his shoulder.
- Reese: Like... rhetorically...?
Leah buries her face in her hands and groans.
- Leah: My... roommate...? That's the best way to put it, I guess. I'm really the only one looking out for her back home and I think you can understand how that might be a little goddamn stressful.
- Reese: I'm sure she's doing okay...
Leah pulls down on her face.
- Leah: But what if she isn't, Reese? How am I supposed to know if X-Ray is doing alright?!
The two sit in awkward silence for a moment. Reese clears his throat.
- Reese: ...X-Ray's a unique name. Sounds pretty.
Leah turns to look at Reese. She narrows her eyes at him.
- Leah: Don't even fuckin' START WITH THAT SHIT.
Reese nods and walks away, leaving Leah alone. She looks back down at the syringes and sighs.
Part 3: Wasteland
Unten and Strafe look through the loot they've piled up, seemingly confused.
- Strafe: Uh, alright... anyone need a VCR player?
- Rachel: Not really.
- Strafe: Good point, everyone already has one. Iron Mask, you're not from around... Earth, right? Consider it a gift.
Strafe tosses Iron Mask the VCR player. He looks at it and shrugs.
- Unten: Alright, how about...
Unten pulls up two strangely shaped flasks with nothing in them.
- Unten: ...weird bottles...?
- Rachel: I'll take 'em. Maybe put those around the apartment, or like... set them out in a park and see how long it takes for someone to say it's performance art.
Unten laughs and hands the bottles to Rachel.
- Strafe: Performance art's like... "hey, look at what I'm doing, it's so damn artistic", right? Happens all the time in Noah... usually with more guns, though.
Unten awkwardly tugs on his scarf. Iron Mask leans against a wall.
- Iron Mask: Seems like a bad place to be.
- Strafe: Well, what's it like where you're from? Is there a reason you have that mask?
Iron Mask freezes up for a second. He rubs the back of his neck, visibly a little more nervous than usual.
- Iron Mask: The Wasteland's not... there's things there worth fighting for. I don't think there's many places where there isn't something bad in... some way, y'know?
- Strafe: I can get that, yeah. Got anyone back there looking out for you?
- Iron Mask: Yeah, actually, I'm leader of...
Iron Mask rummages through his pockets and hands out three calling cards.
- Iron Mask: The Wasteland Warriors. We help people in need, take on tough cases... that sort of thing.
- Rachel: Sounds like a good cause.
- Strafe: You know why they aren't here with you?
- Iron Mask: No idea. I'm sure they've got things under control, though.
- Strafe: Glad to hear it.
Everyone sits silently for a moment. Strafe stands up.
- Strafe: Good talk, everyone. Let's get rolling, shall we?
- Iron Mask: Oh, yeah!
- Rachel: Yeah, we probably should...
- Unten: I was about to ask if we should.
Iron Mask stands up and holds the VCR under one arm, heading to the next room. Unten and Rachel follow suit, Strafe kicking the chest closed and following.
Part 4: Trust Fall
Leah sits around in the inn lobby, very obviously impatient and tired. Thorn walks by, rubbing her arm as she stands across from Leah.
- Thorn: Hey.
- Leah: What do you want?
- Thorn: Sorry for... threatening to stab you earlier.
- Leah: Eh, stabbing can be a good problem solver. Just... don't actually stab me.
Thorn nods and gives Leah a thumbs up. She waits for Leah to nod back before realizing she probably isn't going to, walking away slowly.
Iron Mask dusts off his shoulders, smiling a little as he sheathes his sword. Unten seems impressed, looking around the empty room.
- Unten: We're really doing good here.
- Iron Mask: Yeah, good work. Really coming together as a team, huh?
- Rachel: If we can kick this dungeon's ass this fast, the Wasteland Warriors must be pretty good.
- Iron Mask: Well, we weren't always the best team, but really? It all boils down to just... being a bunch of people with a common goal.
- Rachel: Well, I trust that your work's appreciated back home.
- Iron Mask: Thanks. Feels nice knowing even people from so far away feel that way... nice to have some perspective on how many people we're helping.
Iron Mask stands still for a moment before snapping.
- Iron Mask: Trust falls! That's what I was thinking of.
- Strafe: Are you... trusting us less and less?
- Iron Mask: No, no, trust falls. It's sort of a teambuilding exercise. You just let yourself fall back and trust that the person behind you is gonna catch you.
- Strafe: Oh.
- Iron Mask: We could do some now, if you want.
- Strafe: Sure.
- Rachel: Seems like a good distraction.
- Iron Mask: Alright, so, Unten-
- Unten: I thought you were gonna catch Strafe?
- Iron Mask: Oh, would you rather pair up with Rachel?
Unten looks over at Rachel and Strafe.
- Unten: Nah, nah, it's cool.
- Iron Mask: Well then, just... let yourself fall back. No worries.
Unten takes a deep breath. He starts to fall back, but notices Strafe holding Rachel and stumbles a bit, Iron Mask barely catching him.
- Iron Mask: Something wrong?
- Unten: No, just... I trust you. We can try again.
Iron Mask nods. Unten falls back again, more smoothly, but he's clearly a littlw disoriented. Iron Mask catches him and helps him back up.
- Iron Mask: Good job!
- Unten: Thanks...
- Strafe: Me and Rachel got the hang of this too, I think.
Strafe catches Rachel again. Iron Mask nods at the two.
- Iron Mask: Doing good!
- Unten: Guess we can get moving now...
- Rachel: Sure thing, Unten.
Rachel and Strafe walk towards the next door. Unten looks conflicted and sighs deeply, following Iron Mask.
Part 5: CoMmAnDer!!
Iron Mask pushes open another set of doors, leading into a large circular room. The walls look like they're covered in old wallpaper, but the surface is more like a jagged cave.
- Iron Mask: Another big room.
- Strafe: Another copy of one of us, I'm guessing?
- Rachel: Maybe they're going to throw a curveball this time?
Iron Mask walks down to the center of the room and runs his hand over the chest in the middle. It starts shaking slightly and he stands back, holding his sword.
- Iron Mask: I don't think this is gonna be much different. Get ready!
Unten tries to look ready but flinches as the chest bursts open. A creature far larger than its container crawls out, with metal fused to its face and two swords held tight in its hands with shackles.
- ???: En GaRdE!
- Iron Mask: So this one's me.
- ???: StEeLeD fAcE!
- Strafe: Really getting off track with the names here...
- Iron Mask: No time to complain!
Steeled Face clangs its swords together and snickers to itself. Iron Mask readies his sword and goes in for the first move.
Steeled Face meagerly tries to block an attack after a rough fight. Iron Mask is about to go in for the finishing strike when Unten taps Rachel on the shoulder and whispers something to her.
- Rachel: Oh, damn it, almost forgot! Iron Mask, hold off on killing it for a second!
- Iron Mask: Uh... okay...
Rachel walks up to Steeled Face, holding a syringe. It tries to attack but can barely lift its swords. Rachel takes a small blood sample from it.
- Rachel: Okay, you should be good to-
- Steeled Face: GoRe! BlOoD aNd GoRe! Oh, tHe HuMaNiTy!
Steeled Face shrieks as it evaporates into purple smoke. Everyone in the room is visibly confused.
- Rachel (mumbling): ...the hell...?
- Iron Mask: I, uh... get a little squeamish around blood. Guess that my 'reflection' got that too?
- Strafe: Let's head back up. Leah can handle the samples, and we just got a little closer to leaving!
- Unten: Good work. Iron Mask, do you need time off after fighting that... thing?
Iron Mask shrugs.
- Iron Mask: I've seen worse.
- Unten: ...oh, alright.
Unten and Rachel sit next to Leah in the bar. She puts a couple of drops of water in each of the blood samples and waits.
- Leah: I don't actually have any way to test this blood without medical equipment, but... hey, you were crazy enough to get a blood sample off a monster, so I might as well do something with it.
- Rachel: So you sent us to do something you didn't actually need to be done?
Leah laughs a little. Looking back at the blood samples, she squints and holds one up.
- Leah: Wait a sec... there's actually something up with this.
The blood dissipates into a thick purple haze, the glass syringe audibly 'sizzling'. Leah checks and the others do this too.
- Leah: So they're reacting to water, and turning into... fuck, I dunno. Smog? I'd say this is smog.
- Unten: Weird.
- Rachel: Do you think this means anything?
- Leah: Well, it means the weird townsfolk have the same sort of blood composition as the monsters we've been fighting.
- Unten: So... they're all sort of the same?
- Leah: Could be.
- Rachel: Well, at least we're closer to home now.
- Leah: And still no weird-ass copy of me down there.
Leah slams her fist on the table a few times.
- Leah: Hey, Redd! Mind hurrying the fuck up on that?! For fuck's sake, even that asshole with the air vents for glasses gets one!
Chapter 4: Daredevil's Advocate
A mysterious woman shows up in the Labyrinth, and the gods attempt to get a lead.
Chapter 5: Infinite Tunnels
Unten makes a new friend.
Chapter 6: Blue Skies, Blue Underground
Talk it out.
Chapter 7: Standoff
Who's at the door?
Chapter 8: Jigsaw
The gods put it all together.
Chapter 9: Crpytic Encryptions and Creeped Crpyts
Unten tries playing charades.
Chapter 10: The Gauntlet
A challenge is presented to our heroes.
Chapter 11: Paper Scraps
Rachel finds artwork in the Labyrinth.
Chapter 12: Pale Imitation
We're not being figurative here.
Chapter 13: The Face Of Your Foe
This is the one where you see the face of their foe.
Chapter 14: Adrenaline
Just like on TV!
Chapter 15: Finalé
That's a wrap.