The Day the Epoch Ran Out of Gas Part 4
By The Storyteller
"Okay. It's either over my shoulder, or in my arms."
"Whichever is safer. I've never flown before."
"It's less of a fly then a glide."
"Which position is safer?"
"I'll carry you."
"Fine. One arm on the back, one arm under the legs. If I feel any roaming hands I'll fry you."
"Who has the roaming hands here? You grab any unmentionables and I'll drop you."
"Can we get going?"
Magus grunted as he lifted Lucca into his arms, and took off into the air. He glided along with the wind currents carefully, managing to keep hold on the shaking and nervous Lucca.. As he was about halfway across the ocean, Lucca's wiggling made Magus lose hold of her upper half. He managed to grab her by the ankles before she fell into the ocean depths.
"WHAT THE HELL DID YOU DO???"
"You better keep still unless you want me to drop you!"
"Magus, get me up!"
"The only way to get you up is for me to throw you and catch you!"
"DOOOOOOON'T!!! I'LL STAY LIKE THIS!!!"
Suddenly, something hit Magus's right arm, making him lose grip on Lucca's ankle. She dangled helplessly from his one hand as Magus tried to regain control of her. Magus felt a sudden push from behind, as if something large bounced off of his back. Acting in anger, Magus took his arm and flung Lucca up into the sky. While the screaming Lucca soared into the sky, Magus turned and sent a fireball at the shadow that loomed in the distance. He watched as the ball smashed into the floating shadow and sent it to the ground.
Lucca stopped screaming as she stopped gaining altitude. Her life flashed before her eyes as she plummeted to the ocean ripples below... she stopped breathing, and managed only to feel the cool sprays of the waves before Magus caught her in his arms and bolted toward the nearest land. When they finally made it to land, Magus sent the wide-eyed, shaking Lucca on the ground.
"Are you okay?" said Magus, somewhat but not entirely worried about Lucca's
shock. She only squeaked in response.
"Are you going to answer me?" Magus said, as he knelt beside her. He watched as she felt around the ground, to make sure that she was on it. She sat up and looked around once again, at the plains of grass all around her as she hyperventilated. She then looked at Magus, who was still kneeling next to her. She burst into tears and clasped her arms around Magus's neck.
"Why does everybody have to hug me?" Magus asked, as he hesitantly put his own arms around Lucca's shivering waist. He lifted her and helped her get her feet on the ground, so she could stand. He let go of her and turned to start walking toward their destination, but Lucca could barely manage to move her legs.
"What? Did you forget how to walk?"
When he got no reply, he walked plainly over to Lucca and lifted her in his arms yet again, but she screamed and clawed at him, so he put her down and walked beside her as she moved extremely slowly. You could guess that it took forever to get to Ozzie's Fort.
* * *
"Come on, just give it."
"NO! You can go back to your gay castle with your little mute girlfriend, without the Infinite Improbability Drive!"
"I AM NOT GAY! And she's NOT my girlfriend! Now hand over the Infinite whatever you call it!"
"NO! NO NO NO!"
"Dammit Ozzie, I want that stinking Drive!"
"I'll give you cheesy poofs..."
"Salty Chocolate Balls?"
"Salty whats? Are you hitting on me?"
"I AM NOT GAY! NOW HAND OVER THE DRIVE!"
"I'm going to cast Darkmatter if you don't give it here!"
"Why don't we have some tequila first?"
"You get the Snacky Cakes, I'll get the good stuff. It'll be a party!"
"How's about you get me the tequila, and the Infinite Improbability Drive, so I can get the stiff and her two cronies back to their home?"
"Where do they live, anyway?"
"That's not important. All I know is that they should be there, and not here."
Magus snarled and took Lucca over his shoulder, and started walking farther into the Fort.
"I'll get it myself."
"WAIT! NO! Flea! Slash! Don't let him back there!"
Slash ran out of a room on the side, his face and head covered with goop, with slices of cucumber that had fallen off of his eyes sticking to it.
"What? Who? What's the problem?"
"Slash, get back here! You need more Fox Noodle!"
Magus pushed through the two partially made over Mystics and made his way down the halls and around, through the small hidden passageway that had previously led him to his best weapons and armor. After searching through the back, he found the hidden stash of now broken musical equipment, and finally, the generator. Right in front was the small, shining gold box.
"Okay, Lucca, work your magic."
He let Lucca to the ground, as she grabbed a screwdriver from her belt and carefully removed the screws and various attachments holding the box in place. After it was removed (while Magus held back the still partially made over Slash) they could hear the generator slow to a halt. But there was still a slight whir coming from deep within the walls that Lucca couldn't understand.
"Put it back! Put it back, nerd!"
"Lucca, ignore him. Let's go."
Lucca ignored the both of them, and started searching along the length of the wall.
"NO! DON'T LET HER DO THAT!"
"Aww, come on, Slash, let her see it. It's really nothing special..."
"NO! That's where they make the Inter-Dimensional Media Crystals!"
"Be nice... let her see it. Come on, I've been awfully nice lately... you should try it, really..."
Lucca pushed along the wall until suddenly a large set of bricks pushed forward and to the side, opening a small hole leading into the most incredible sight Lucca had ever seen. It was a factory running deep underground. Assembly lines were still slowing to a halt as Lucca watched the confused Imps below run around frantically, trying to save their inventions.
"Dear God... she found it..."
"Yup, she did. You know, I need another Media Crystal, would it be okay if I went in there and got one?"
Magus gave Slash a final smash across his face and sent him sprawling to the ground. Wiping his hand on his pants, he walked over to Lucca and helped usher her into the hole.
"Here it is. The factory. This is where they build all of the Media Crystals."
Lucca walked around in awe, looking at the machinery. The assembly lines were all connecting, each end leading to another section, making it very efficient. It started in the back, from what Lucca could see, with melting pots containing molten glass. The glass was then molded and cooled, with each newly formed crystal going forward past a few more vats containing an unknown blue liquid. The liquid was poured through the small holes on the partially flattened bottom. The filled crystals were moved toward another bunch of working imps who put the little black switches together. Finally, a newer mechanism was added also on the bottom, which was what made it float. Finally, the crystals were glazed and set to dry, and boxed as a finished product.
"Isn't it beautiful?"
Lucca, who hadn't spoken all night/day, once again, didn't reply.
"There's a whole world underground that you haven't seen. Nor has anybody. In fact, you're the only non Mystic who has ever seen this."
Magus walked over to a bunch of boxes and grabbed one.
"You want one?"
Lucca nodded. Magus took another box and threw it to her. She managed to catch it while still keeping hold on the delicate Infinite Improbability Drive. Magus also grabbed a large white bag with straps on the end.
"Time to go..."
Magus looked over at all of the angry Imps who gathered behind the gates leading out of the working area. None of them dared approach Magus, since they all knew his strength... they worked for him, they should know.
"Hi everybody! How are you all doing today?" Magus said brightly, waving to the imps, who gave no reply. "Oh, I'm super! Thanks for asking!"
Magus walked Lucca back through the hidden door and shut it as he left. He stepped over the still unconscious Slash and made his way past the angry Flea and Ozzie.
"Where are you going? And you think you're actually taking those crystals
with you? Those are to be sold to the residents!"
"Well, we're residents now. Goodbye."
"Flea, get him!"
"I don't want to break a nail! I just did them!"
Magus walked Lucca outside. He took the bag and opened it, and put his box inside. He took the other box and the gold box inside of it, and then dropped the other box inside of it. He then tied the box around his boot so it could be easily carried across the oceans.
"Are you ready to go?"
Lucca took a step backward and shook her head. She still didn't speak a word.
"Lucca, come on... I promise I'll make it quick."
Lucca walked forward again, pleading silently for Magus to find another way back to the castle.
"Lucca... don't do this... I don't know about you but I'm looking to get home."
Lucca had tears in her eyes as she pleaded. Her voice made a slight whining sound.
"Aww... poor baby..." Magus said, as he suddenly gasped in horror. "Did I just say that?"
"Am I getting... soft?"
Lucca smiled somewhat, feeling relieved that she wouldn't have to fly any more. However, that relief was short lived. Magus grabbed her in his arms and lifted off the ground, the bag hanging from his boot. Magus flew forward quickly, as he tried to stop Lucca from screaming and crying.
She kept on screaming and crying and flailing her arms somewhat, fearing the worst. There was no way to keep her from shutting up! Magus tried cupping his hand over her mouth, but she kept screaming loud enough to be heard through it. He pushed his hand harder over her mouth, trying to keep her wails silent.
"Pipe down! We're almost to the castle!!!" He said, barely audible over her screams. "What will it take to shut you up?"
Then Lucca bit him.
"Owww! What the hell was that about?"
Lucca screamed louder and scrambled to hold onto Magus, who was only supporting her with one hand as they soared through the sky. She latched onto his cape, her fingers ripping at the cloth that held the cape around Magus's shoulders..
"Don't do that! You'll rip it! Shut up! I'm going deaf!!!"
She gripped harder at his clothes as Magus wrapped his still hurting hand around Lucca's waist. Lucca hung from his neck, pulling his head downward, unknowingly bringing herself closer to his ear, which she constantly screamed through. And finally, Magus used his last and final resort. He kissed her. She promptly stopped screaming while Magus's hesitant lips were on hers. And Magus, who hadn't wanted to feel that feeling again, had to put up with it all the way home...
Magus stumbled to the ground, landing on one leg, and resting the bag on the ground with the other. He pulled his lips away from Lucca's, who was still holding onto him.
"Lucca, can you let go of me?"
Lucca wouldn't move. She was stunned and rigid, and couldn't budge. Magus managed to remove his cape and left it with Lucca, as he untied the bag from his foot and carried it within the doors of the castle, leaving behind the Drive and the second Media Crystal.
* * *
"What's with you people?"
Magus walked into the brightly-lit kitchen, and glanced at Crono, Marle, and Glenn, all of whom were staring at a small ball of turquoise hair in the middle of the table.
"Hello? Are all of you okay? Can I do anything for you?" Magus gasped again
at the fact that he just said yet another oddly sweet thing. "Damn me! I'm
"Magus, take a look at this." said Marle, finally looking up.
"I was rummaging through your cabinet, looking for some food, when I came across some weird things. First, there were these little silver things with prongs at the end... four of them on each..."
"Like a fork."
"It's a piece of silverware, one of the, uh, inventions made by the Mystics..."
"Mystics make inventions? I thought they were all stupid, seeing as Ozzie and the other two represent them..."
"The little imps are smarter than you think. Continue..."
"Anyway, there were also these little wooden sticks..."
"Whatever. And then I found a large container full of these little things... they were all wet, and there was this weird smelling tea on the bottom..."
"Teabags. It's an easier way to make tea, which I don't drink anyway. What does that have to do with this hairball?"
"Don't ask me how, but I managed to pull Spekkio away from the pieces of that shattered toy, and made him drink some of that liquid inside the container..."
"A regular chemist, aren't you..."
"Shut up. Anyway, he passed out cold, and I can't bring him back, although I know he's still alive. Thing is, he coughed this up." Marle said, pointing to the hairball.
Magus looked over to his counter, and noticed the very container sitting open on the countertop. He approached it and lifted it, swirling around the liquid as it ran in between the tea bags. Dipping his middle finger into the liquid, he placed a drop on his tongue, trying not to swallow. He then washed his hands and mouth out in the nearby sink after placing the container back on the counter.
"It tastes almost bitter... sort of like almond... I think its formaldehyde."
"No I didn't. I said it was formaldehyde."
Magus turned to Marle, who was as clueless as ever.
"Ehh... thank you."
"So where's Lucca?" asked Glenn, breaking his personal silence.
"She's outside, in a state partial consciousness."
"What? How?" asked Marle, jumping up from her seat.
"I don't know, but she's out of it."
"Oh, she almost died a few times, nothing special."
"Jesus Christ! You just left her there?"
"She'll be fine. She's probably just a little shocked. If anything were really wrong with her, I'd have carried her inside and rested her on a bed."
* * *
"Yeah... Yeah... I'm fine... Just a bit shocked."
"That bastard left you outside."
"Oh, let him be. I really don't care." Lucca said, as she raised her fingers to feel her lips.
"So I guess its time to get this thing together, right?"
"Yeah... where's BeBo? I might be able to use its help."
"I think he's stacked somewhere inside. I know I moved it into Magus's room..." she said, turning toward the open door to the castle. "HEY! MAGUS! Go get BeBo!"
Magus called a reply outward, as he approached the doorway and began to turn to his left, into the front room.
"Get it yourself. That robot is a bore, and it certainly can't carry a tune."
Magus turned into the front room and let out a deep yell, as he jumped backward in shock.
"What the hell is that?"
"What is what?"
"That! That painting!"
Marle looked into the windows providing a view of Magus's front room, and sure enough, there was a painting of him, dressed in white armor and cloth, a sword at his side, with his hair tied up in a ponytail.
"Is... is that a painting of you?"
"That can't be me!"
"It's you... in white! I think that was what you looked like when you were gay!"
"I AM NOT GAY!"
"You know, Magus, white isn't a bad color for you. It beats out all of that stupid purple you're always wearing..."
"I like my colors! And besides, why are you people concentrating on me? Go! Go home! And safe trip.... AARRRGH!" Magus slammed his door shut.
"Jeez... he's really different..."
"Yeah, I know. He's not like he was back when he was fighting with us." said Lucca, as she stood. She opened a small compartment on her belt and took out a screwdriver. Then, wiping the dirt off her body, she grabbed the Infinite Improbability Drive and started working on the Epoch.
* * *
"I can't believe this... this absolutely appalling picture of me!"
Magus stood on the couch and lifted the painting off of the pins that held it on the wall. He held it in front of him and stared at it. It was him, all right, sitting happily, dressed in shiny white clothes and armor, with a sword at his side. His hair was tied up high, and it fell in front of his ears and onto his shoulders. As he stared, he noticed a small inconsistency in the paint, as there was a small dark spot right in the neck. Upon closer inspection, though, Magus noticed it wasn't the paint at all, it was a small slit, the exact same size as the other cuts, made with the exact same sword.
"Hmm. I guess our assailant knew good art from bad..."
Magus managed to break the hard canvas into several pieces and carried it into his kitchen.
"What's that, Magus?" asked Glenn, who was still staring at the hairball.
"It was some dumb painting that was in the front room..."
"That painting of you?"
"You mean this is the first time you're noticing it? It's been there for more than a month and a half!"
"What, you think I've explored this castle fully? I haven't had time to! I've either been practicing with the band or protecting that little air head from a nonexistent danger."
"Marle or Lucca?"
"Which one is dumber, Glenn? The one who can build one of the most complex machines of her time, or the one who forgets she has ice magic and is afraid of everything under the sun?"
"I'll be in my room."
* * *
Magus walked inward slowly, removing his armor and undershirt, and lying on his bed, tired from the long and annoying trop alongside that loud girl... although he couldn't help but think of her sad face, her meek smile, her look of surprise when she uncovered the underground mystic lair... the way her lips felt, and her tongue...
Magus sighed some, but ignored the anxious feelings in the pit of his stomach that told him to go to her again. Instead, he moved backward toward his pillow and daydreamed, thinking of what it would be like to play again on stage, without anyone else... just him, just as he was young, singing deeply... playing powerfully... his body sweating, his arms moving, his fans screaming for more of him... the girls rushing onto the stage for him, begging for attention... the blond one on the left, the redhead on the right, the purplehead in his front...
He reached his arms under the pillow, on the verge of falling asleep, and adjusted his tired arms. And he felt something hard, something not normal on a soft bed... he sat up and removed the pillows, and there he saw it, the worst site he could ever see... his beloved guitar, his only creative output... his vitality, sliced straight in two across the base. Carefully lifting the halved instrument in his arms, noticing the only piece still intact was a single string holding the top to the bottom.
He carried the guitar carefully in his arms, passing by a room where Crono and Glenn sat, talking.
"...So that was it? One night together and she dumps you? But why?"
Glenn looked up suddenly as he saw Magus enter the room, his beloved instrument dangling in his arms...
"Oh my God... who did that?"
"I-I-I-I-I I don't n-n-n-n-know..." Magus stuttered.
"Take Lucca! She fix!"
"I'm sorry, man..." Glenn said calmly
Magus bowed his head and turned to continue on his way to Lucca's location, staring at the dulled red pieces of his favorite machine...
* * *
Lucca stumbled into the kitchen. She was mostly done with installing the Infinite Improbability Drive within the hull of the Epoch. To be sure that their unknown assailant wouldn't damage this particular piece of equipment, Marle stood guard before the Epoch, warning Lucca that if she saw or heard anything funny she'd go running...
Lucca searched through Magus's refrigerator.
"Hmm... Beer, beer, beer, white wine, more beer, lemon juice, and water... I need something with taste!"
She looked around all over, but only saw the container on the counter.
"Old tea. That'll do for now..."
She lifted the container to her lips and took a swig....
"Lucca! Don't drink that!" Magus yelled, as he entered the kitchen. He dropped the guitar to the floor and ran to catch Lucca as she started coughing and slumped to the ground...
"Lucca! Lucca! MAARLE!!!"
* * *
The sudden shriek of her name made her jump straight out of the Epoch, a reaction sending her running into the castle, down the hallways, and into the kitchen. She barely had the time to speak before she saw Lucca, slumped backward over Magus's arm. He was slapping her back and forth in the face.
"What are you doing to her? Let her go!"
"She drank it!" he yelled, as he lifted her off the ground.
"Drank what? The poison?"
She followed as he carried her into an empty bedroom and laid her there, giving her taps on each cheek, trying to wake her.
"Magus, move out. Lock the door behind me. I've got work to do."
Magus agreed, and squeezed Lucca's hand, before he let go of her to walk away. Behind him, he could see Marle sitting at her side, chanting quietly, before he closed and locked the door.
"What happened?" asked Glenn, as he came from the stairs, with Crono at his
"Meesa hear Magus yell!"
"She drank it..."
"The poison... I should have drained that but I didn't... and she's poisoned..."
Magus stared at the floor below. It was covered with bits and pieces of various objects... the old Media Crystal, the teapot, some of the shreds from the broken car, various liquids... it was a pure mess, but Magus didn't bother to take care when stepping over it. He could hear the crunches of the material under his boots as he plopped downward into a chair.
"Is Marle trying to heal her now?"
"Yes... yes she is..."
Crono's head sunk as he sat down across from Magus. He buried his head in his arms and began to cry.
The assailant has gone too far. Luccas poisoned, and on the brink of death. The Epoch remains unfixed, so the crew has no way of getting home. Worst of all, the assailant is still on the loose is it possible that she might go too far?
Stay ready for the next chapter, as Magus spills his guts, and Lucca does too (in two totally different ways) and the young girl is finally revealed to be
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