After a tearful reunion between the two of them, Geno finally speaks.
"I..I missed you too, Mario. I'm so happy to see you again."
Mario knew that if Geno could cry, he would be now. He was so embarrassed by these white-hot emotions that ran through his veins, making him feel faint. Geno's charm was potent, lethal to someone like Mario.
"It's been too long... But why are you back?"
Mario secretly wished that it was because of his plea earlier that night. Peach tensed up.
"Well... We have trouble up at Star Road again."
Mario's heart sank, but only a little. He was still contently holding Geno, albeit loosely, and he made no move to pull away. Maybe he returned his feelings? Or was this just another fantasy? He had no idea, but holding the other just felt right, and he would never let go if he could.
"What kind of trouble?" Peach speaks up.
Geno grimaces, obviously stressed. He tightly sighs.
"Star Road... Is melting away."
Mario looks shocked.
"Melting? Like how?"
He blinks a few times.
"It seems a black sludge is dissolving it. None of the star spirits can identify what it is... Not even Eldstar himself. We're all at a loss. So... They sent me down to investigate earth."
Mario pulls away slightly, just so his arms are free, but he's still fairly close to the star spirit. He rubs his chin in thought.
"At this rate, Star Road will completely disappear... With no hope of repair. Or at least, it would take millennia to make a new one. And millennia without wishes... That is not one I'd like to live in."
"Well, this is serious already." Peach chimes in. "What can we do to help?"
Mario's eyes lit up. "Does this mean..."
"Another adventure? Like old times? Of course it does."
Geno's smile is warm and inviting, and Mario can't help but hug him tightly again. Just like old times... A new start... They had so much catching up to do! Mario didn't even know where to start. About the time they went to Isle Delpino? Maybe when they saved another dimension from the all-encompassing void? The pil'lo people and their nightmare bat King problem? There're so many things to talk about, but not a single word formed in his mouth. All he wanted to do was hold Geno in his arms. He's not sure that Geno minded.
"But it's like." Peach looks down at her phone. "11:30 at night. We're not going on an adventure now, are we?"
Geno pulls away from the hug and ponders this. "Hm, I suppose not. We can go in the morning."
"Weeeell, we were doing a sappy romcom marathon. Wanna join?"
Mario's face lit up. He wasn't usually this quiet, but something about Geno made his throat close up.
"Of course. I've been wanting to catch up with you two for the longest time now..."
"Alright then, hop on the couch and lets do this! You too, Mario."
At the mention of his name he jumps, following Geno to the couch. He sits down next to the star spirit, placing his hand over theirs. Fingers brush against smoothed wood, a comforting feeling. Mario adored it. Peach was sifting through the pile of DVDs next to the tv, trying to find something good.
"Huh... How about, 'Star River'? I thought it was a bit ironic."
Geno giggles, a sound that makes Mario's heart leap into his throat.
"That sounds wonderful."
"Well, we make fun of these movies, so don't expect to catch too much of the plot."
She pops in the dvd and launches herself backward into the couch, sticking the landing. She strikes a pose and Mario laughs. She always was perfectly silly to calm Mario's nerves. He snuggles up to Geno, not really minding the tension between them. There was no confession, not yet at least. But it seemed that it was wordless, Mario's tears were all the confession he needs.
The movie opens on a starry sky, as expected, and a couple is sitting on a hill, watching the stars. Mario could only think of the two of them sitting on a hill and doing the same. Watching the stars, he bets that Geno knows a ton about them, and could point out the constellations... It was enchanting to think about.
"Little do they know, space is gay." Peach quips.
"It is. I can vouch."
Geno laughs at his own joke, but so do Mario and Peach. Well, confirmed. Geno is as queer as Mario pegged him to be. In the years past, it's become more and more accepted by the Mushroom Kingdom, as their princess had come out as a lesbian. He guessed the same happened up in Star Road.
"You can't be straight in space, you just can't." Geno laughs.
"That's for sure." Mario bumps Geno on the shoulder.
His eyes wander to Geno's hand, which was placed on his leg. Oh. A blush spread across his face before he knew it.
This was going to be a long night.
Peach was giggling away on her phone, obviously talking to someone she likes. The first person who came to mind was Rosalina; she had been pining after her for the past year or so. Everytime Peach tried to confess, something had to get in the way. Last time, it was interrupted by a hail storm. The time before that, Bowser just happened to invade the castle they were staying in. For being a magical princess, she sure had the most rotten luck. Mario was 90% sure Rosalina already loves her back, but Peach insists there HAS to be a proper confession.
Geno sat in Mario's bed, peacefully reading a book, as usual. The star spirit had no need for sleep, so they opted to read instead. It ended up making them very well read on Mushroom Kingdom history, human psychology, and all kinds of other things.
"D'ya mind that Rosa might be tagging along on this adventure?"
Peach called from the floor, she had made a little blanket island to sleep on. She much preferred it to any fancy antique beds Toadsworth made for her.
"Not at all, yo. She's always lots of fun to have around."
Though she gives off an air of mystery, Mario knew deep down that Rosalina was as big a dork as the rest of them. She was just a little more secretive about it. Mario and Peach, however, had nothing to hide at this point. The mother of the lumas was kind, and strangely powerful. No one really knows how powerful she is, but you can always feel this sort of... Energy around her. She comes to their sports outings all the same, though, fitting in nicely with their ragtag group of friends. She was definitely the mom friend. She settled disputes in the group, and just generally had a very warm and welcoming air about her. Maybe that's what drove Peach up the wall every time they saw each other.
"Rosa? Do I know them?"
Geno simply questions, looking up from their book. Mario shakes his head in return, climbing into bed next to them.
"Nope. But she's from space, just like you. Dunno if she has anything to do wit Star Road though... I never really asked."
Peach shrugged too as she locked her phone and stretched, preparing to sleep, kind of like a cat.
"Hmm... I only really interact with wish makers, and the other star spirits, so I think I'd know her if I saw her."
Mario nods, and is cut off by a yawn before he can answer.
"Yeah, she's really quite the ethereal character. She's really nice though, I'm sure you two will get along."
Silence befalls the three of them as Mario clicks off his lamp. It wasn't an uncomfortable one, of course not, it was as warm, kind of cozy silence. Mario pulls the covers over himself and Geno, who smiled at the gesture. The two of them heard Peach shuffle around in her blanket nest before settling down, nestled in between her blankets.
"Good night guys."
And for once, Mario slept without any interruptions.
After a quick morning routine and some catching up, the three of them were on the road to the Mushroom Kingdom proper. For one, they needed to meet up with Rosalina, and Peach needed to do some supplies shopping, as did the rest of them. The pathway to the city was lined by a vast forest, crawling with all kinds of animals and plants.
A baby Wiggler crossed their path quickly, making them all stop for a second. Geno seemed to remember something.
"Oh, yes, how could I forget? You two, do you remember back then, when I said I couldn't grant wishes while on the surface?"
Mario raises his eyebrows, looking over to Peach.
"Yeah, what about it?"
Geno straightens themself out, proud of themselves.
"Well, it's no longer a problem anymore! In the amount of time we've been apart, I've been able to circumvent this, simply by training up my magic. Go ahead, try me."
A short pause.
"Er- within reason, of course."
Peach pouts a bit in thought, what could she wish for...
As if on cue, a small bird hops out of the forest, seemingly injured. Peach gasps and Mario looks concerned as it chirps at the trio. Peach immediately knows what to do.
"I wish that bird could fly again!"
What happened next scared the ever living crap out of the two of them. Geno's pupils turn a glowing white, with an intensity to them that Mario could barely describe. The star spirit walks over to the injured bird, and carefully scoops it up. A flash of light overcomes the ball of fluff for a second, and once it fades, it happily chirps and takes off into the sky. Peach and Mario's jaws dropped.
"Oh my gosh, Geno that was amazing!"
Geno takes a little bow, humbled by the praise. Then they smile that smile that makes Mario's throat close up. Peach applauds them.
"That's gonna be so useful on our adventure! ... But there's gotta be a catch to power like that."
They nod, letting out a regretful chuckle.
"I can only do that once, or twice a day, depending on how big the wish is. Any more, and I could end up hurting myself."
They clear their throat. Do they even have a throat?
"Or, someone else. And I don't want to hurt either of you."
Mario finally finds his voice again.
"It's okay, just don't overwork yourself for our sake, alright?"
"It's a promise."
As they entered the town, Peach immediately spotted Rosalina at one of the open market stalls, idling chatting with the Koopa that owned it. She looked quite old and wise, the perfect type for her. Peach calls out to her.
The woman immediately looks up, shocked out of her wits, before she sees the trio, and it immediately melts into a warm smile. She turns to wave to the three of them as they approach. Peach practically tackles the poor woman.
"Oh dear, Peach, I missed you too."
"I missed you soooo much Rosa! It's only been like, two weeks, but I still missed you!"
Mario snickered at this exchange, 'try waiting 6 years.' Crossed his mind, but he decided against saying it. That would be a little rude. Geno shyly approaches Rosalina.
"And you must be Geno. I've heard a lot about you."
The star spirit nods, extending a hand to her.
"It's very nice to meet you, Rosalina."
"The pleasure is all mine."
After a few moments of silence, Peach shatters it.
"So, whatcha looking at?"
She was obviously referring to the stall they were standing right next to.
"Oh yes, this wonderful woman here sells magical jewelry."
Peach's eyes light up, as do the rest of the crews. Magical accessories are definitely needed on an adventure like this.
"Ooooh! Like what?"
Rosalina turns back to the table, and picks up a choker dotted with sapphires.
"This is an Undyne choker, and it raises your water affinity."
She then picks up a bracelet with a large chunk of turquoise on it.
"And this is an Apollo band. It raises your magic and mp by quite a bit."
Peach's eyes could not get any wider with excitement.
"Oh my gosh! We need to get something for everyone! Do they have any fire ones for Mario?"
"I believe they do, let's look together, alright?"
"Yay! Of course!"
Geno and Mario exchange looks, before happily browsing through the countless accessories together. They grab his hand sometime during it, and neither of them seem to let go.