(Disclaimer: We don't own Redwall or Lord of the Rings. The PPC idea comes from Jay and Acacia, who first came up with the idea.)
Protectors of the Plot Continuum: Mossflower Division
By Bubonic Woodchuck
It was night-time. The birds were asleep. The stars shone black in the sky. Under regular circumstances, 'stars shining black' would have been impossible; however, in this world, anything could happen.
The warrior stood alone on the ramparts of Redwall Abbey, watching, waiting for dawn.
He was a well-built mouse, the light of a fighter shining in his hard eyes. He could not be moved. He had suffered through too much to let himself be pushed around. He was Martin the Warrior, one of the Founders of Redwall, and he had paid much to become what he was now - and paid dearly.
A single word pushed its way into his mind, and almost instantly he thought of Eradrïnynae Yrladdrym. The young mousemaid had only arrived at Redwall a few days before, but she bore on her features such a resemblance to his Rose that she had taken his breath away.
True, she was an outcast from her clan - her clan, the stars in the night sky above - because she had been born an albino, with golden eyes. But she had a wonderful personality, and Martin the Warrior thought that there was no-beast in all of Mossflower like her. She could wield a blade better than Martin himself, and could strike a dragonfly on the wing if she but held a bow in her paws.
Even as he thought of her, Martin was aware of footsteps padding behind him.
Eradrïnynae glided to his side, her fiery golden eyes focused on him.
"You are thinking about your lost love," she said. It was not a question.
Martin turned, and nodded. He realised, as if for the first time, that the mousemaid's beauty was breathtaking; indeed, she was more beautiful than a breeze-blown spring day... Trembling, he slid his paws about her slender waist, and both of them shared a long embrace, and a passionate kiss.
It was Eradrïnynae that broke away first. She stared up at him with her gentle eyes, longing to be next to him eternally. Martin looked back down at her, and he placed a paw on the jewel between her eyes that showed she was an outcast from the stars. It was turning blue, a sign that she was in love. "You are like Rose, and yet you are not," he breathed.
"You are...seeking your Rose," she murmured. "I sense this. I feel your aura growing dark."
Martin was shocked. "How do you know this?" he asked.
"Easy. It's 'cos she's a Mary-Sue," smirked a voice.
"Yeah, they're all like that. You get used to it after you go on a coupla missions," a second chimed in.
Martin and Eradrïnynae spun around to see a ferret and a weasel leaning on the battlements, nasty grins on their faces. The ferret was clad in a plain brown jerkin, and seemed to carry no weapons, save a rather suspicious-looking pouch tied to her belt. The weasel was sporting a tunic that appeared to have been green once upon a time, but was now discoloured, and rather dirt-stained. She was toting a longbow. Martin's sword was out and pointed at the pair in a split-second.
"Who are you, and how did you get here?"
"Stay out of this, Martin," warned the ferret. "We just want the mousemaid."
"Yeah. She's disrupting the continuum," added the weasel.
"Save me, Martin!" shrieked Eradrïnynae. "Help!"
"Never fear, my love," exclaimed Martin gallantly. "They will never defeat me!" Having said these completely out-of-character words, he waved his sword dramatically and rushed towards the vermin, who both winced at this obvious breach of canon.
"I really duwanna do this," began the ferret, "but desperate stuff...calls for...other desperate stuff. I forget how the saying goes." She produced a blowpipe from her pouch, and before anybeast could blink an eye, Martin was out cold on the ground, a small tufted dart protruding from his shoulder.
"Ohhhh," wailed Eradrïnynae. "They have slain my love. The vermin have killed him, the cowards, without a fair fight." Her eyes flashed red; she pulled the sword from the unconscious Martin's paw, and proceeded to advance toward the vermin duo. The ferret danced forward and caught Eradrïnynae a blow between the eyes, just below the blue jewel, stunning the mousemaid momentarily.
"Oh, hell's whiskers." The weasel drew a shaft from a quiver and slid it onto her bowstring. "You do the charges, Shay."
Shay waved her blowpipe around dramatically as she recited, "Eradrïnynae Yrladdrym, you are charged with being 'an albino with golden eyes,' inducing said eyes to change color at will, having a 'magical crystal' implanted on your forehead, coming from the stars, resembling a canon character, being telepathic, being a god-moder, being a Warrior!Sue, and having a deleterious impact on the canon character of Martin the Warrior." The ferret waved the blowpipe again. "Any last words?"
"Draw steel, and fight me like a true warrior!" proclaimed the mousemaid.
Even an inexperienced archer would have been hard put to miss at this range.
Shay smiled nastily as Eradrïnynae's eyes began to cloud. "D'you knows, I forgot to tell you. We're not warriors. We're assassins. And we kill Mary-Sues." She slung the now-dead mousemaid over her shoulder. "Let's go, Rena."
Rena plucked the dart from Martin's shoulder, tucked it back into the pouch at her side, opened up a portal with a strange-looking device, and the pair disappeared into the void as canon snapped back into place.
Martin awoke in a matter of minutes. Due to his unconscious state at the time of battle, and also to the fact that the poisoned dart had borne an ancient venom that erased all memory - known to the Protectors of the Plot Continuum as Bleepka - he remembered nothing about what had occurred...
And nothing about a young albino mousemaid named Mary-Sue.
"Neat job. Well done," said a voice.
Shay Williams pulled off her headset and virtual reality goggles, and looked eagerly at the tall Asian girl that stood beside her. "Really? You think so?"
"Yeah. Better than my first training mission, and believe me, that one's hard to top." The Asian girl grinned and patted Shay on the back. "Excellent, excellent. I think you're ready to start PPCing."
Shay's eyes widened. "You're kidding me, Rena."
"I'm not. That was one of the toughest missions on the hard drive."
"It was? That's the hardest the missions will get in the PPC?"
Rena Chang shook her head. "No. No, it's not. It's harder, wilder, tougher. It might seem fun at first, but then it gets bad." Her dark brown eyes seemed to be elsewhere.
It's tougher out there. A million times tougher. Your job is to kill Mary-Sues - and sometimes that means watching canon characters die. Watching them suffer. It's no wonder Upstairs wants us to recruit so much - it's to make up for all the agents that go insane, or leave, or get killed during missions. You'll learn, Shay. You'll learn in time. Why, just a while ago, Acacia in the Lord of the Rings department took extended leave, and she hasn't been back for a long while. Her favorite character...it was Boromir, wasn't it? Explains why she left...
"Explains...a lot...huh?" Rena looked up into the worried green eyes of the new recruit.
"You spaced out for a moment there. You okay?"
"It's nothing, Shay. I'll be fine."
"You sure?" Shay looked skeptical.
Rena smiled. "I'm sure. Now, let's go to the SO. I think you're ready for the real thing."
The sunflower seemed to beam down at Rena and Shay, waving it fronds eagerly.
A new recruit, is it, Rena? You've been busy.
Shay squeaked. "Rena...the flower...it's TALKING!"
And if that was a display of the recruit's mental capacity, I should have to say that I am unimpressed.
Rena twitched. "She's good with a bow. Better than the last one."
That's not saying much. The 'last one' shot herself every time she handled a bow.
"She got the intended target right between the eyes at a distance of five yards," continued Rena.
That's still not saying much, insisted the Sunflower Official, head of the Mary-Sue Department. Not much at all.
"You said we should recruit," said Rena, for the most part unfazed. "You never said the recruit had to be in working order."
"Am I in or not?" Shay interrupted, a bit put out at being continually referred to in the third person. "I mean, I can hit things from a farther distance than that. It's just the distance I was at and all..."
All right, all right. The CO ruffled its petals in a rather unsuccessful attempt at looking affronted. Get out of here.
Shay grinned. I'm in! she thought excitedly. I'm actually in the PPC!
[Rena's A/N: So here's the beginning to our PPC spinoff. Um...yeah. As you can tell, it would sort of help if you've read the original PPC series. And...leave a review. Yeah. And I know that I've a million WIPs to finish, but the urge to write a spinoff was just too strong. I'll update the others sooner or later.]
[Shay's A/N: I'm in the PPC! EEEEEE! So anyways it's great to be here. Big big big thank-you to Rena, who let me partner up with her, and über-big big big thank-you to the guys at the PPC Message Board, who authorised this. Do review. It makes us happy.]