Gertrude Jones, not the most extraordinary or eye-pleasing girl, spent many a night in her room dreaming. The acne scar-faced, ninety-eight pound ash blonde often sat on her bed after a rousing session of Suikoden III, clutching her pillow and weeping to herself.

Tonight in particular was no exception.

"You stupid cuntwaffles!" yelled Gertrude in anger. "How DARE you take my Luc away? If I were only there, I would save him, and he would fall in love with me. My...Luc..." She continued grumbling.

All of a sudden her Playstation 2 made an odd scratching noise. Gertrude looked up, confused, for that sound was only associated with her PSX. Then a new realization came to the girl-THE CONSOLE WAS NOT TURNED ON!

"What the..." She tossed her pillow aside and came closer for some amateur inspection. When she came close enough, however, A BRIGHT LIGHT SURROUNDED HER AND SUCKED HER STRAIGHT INTO THE SYSTEM!

Gertrude had no time to scream as the vortex made all sorts of zapping noises. She looked down and watched her body go through all sorts of bizarre, not that, you sickos. I mean she watched as her entire world-including herself-as it converted to the blocky polygon world of Suikoden III. Suddenly she was traveling at light speed, the setting becoming sparkly and Star Wars-esque. It was a miracle her face did not fall off.

When she arrived at her destination, she was promptly transferred to a strange, sticky pod.

All was well in the world of Suikoden.

Well, except for the whole "RAH I WANNA DESTROY TRUE RUNE WAR BLOOD DECEPTION DEATH" thing that was going on.

Now, time for a little personification.

The bright blue sky smiled at the earth below, always pleased with the degree of contrast it was met with. The winds blustering along the way were evidence of its sighing contentment.

Two seconds later, however, it erupted like it needed some frickin' Gas-X. But instead of the thundering clouds that often came with it, something else was arriving!

The sky spasmed twice over the Amur Plains and then dilated, making way for a purple pod that was gradually floating downward. This pod was rapidly changing, as were the contents inside of it. The rumbling and clamoring continued until the pod ceased all action, causing a silence not unlike that of the eye of a storm. Just then, it exploded in a ridiculous anime puff ball of smoke, and Gertrude, the girl who was once inside, transformed into...


Maridel Susanna Bishznacher!

Maridel, the heroine of a thousand ages. Her long, bouncy, silver hair flowed down her back like a mercurial waterfall and kissed her delicate ankles with its smooth, sealed ends. Her vast azure oculars shone brightly and vividly, her tiny nose and delicate mouth more than proud to accompany the shimmering, oceanic pools of blue raspberry Kool-Aid. Her hourglass figure felt no shame beneath the tiny costume that accented her phenomenally perky bosoms and showed off her size two hips. Her well-defined arms were devoid of granny tricep syndrome, and lean, mean, I'll-kick-your-ass-like-a-cowboy-boot-machine legs stood atop strong but salon-treated feet covered in fashionable Sketchers.

Her skin, a porcelain petting zoo for pretty boys for miles around, was flawless from head to toe. Her lips parted, revealing two white, perfect rows of an orthodontist's nightmare, a smile that sparkled from three different angles are you paying attention?




Okay. Now, Maridel was a newbie to the Suikoden world, and had little to no combat experience. Therefore, all she had attached to her twenty-one inch waist was a Swiss Army knife. However, her luck was about to change!

The sky belched once more, turning Maridel's attention upward. A small object headed straight for her at an incredible speed. Strangely, her hands, with all the sharp reflexes of a well-trained martial artist, caught the item without a twinge of pain.

Now, back in the real world, little Gertrude Jones was good and well. She sat at her laptop, typing away like a madwoman. She hadn't at all been zapped into her Suikoden game, but it was such an awesome idea that it had to be written down.

Gertrude continued culturing her acne as she feasted on her third Hershey bar, and she was taking full advantage of the resulting sugar high. After all, what better way to write?

Maridel examined the object, seeming nothing short of confused, and looked to the sky again.

"What is this?" she asked.

"It's a gun!" came the response, the voice sounding suspiciously like that of a fourteen-year-old female's.

"Where did you get it?"

"Uh..." There was a silence. "I got it from Zaj. Or rather, YOU got it from Zaj, after you cleaved his body in two with your MAD SKILLZ."

This only further added to Maridel's confusion. "But I only have a Swiss knife. How could I-"

"You did. Trust me, you did."

"But hasn't Zaj been dead for the past fifteen years?"

"He faked his death and you beat his ass after you found him stalking Nash six months ago."

"...But wouldn't I be branded for having something like th-"

"SILENCE! Now, plot-wise, you're here just after Chris received her True Water Rune. Because that's about the time Luc loses that stupid mask and finally shows his pretty face. I want you to go find him."

"But where-?"

"He's at Mt. Senai, I think. With that bitch Sarah, no doubt. Now, stand still for a second."

Maridel did as she was told, but nothing seemed to happen.

"There. I've just imbued you with some teleportation powers. Now go."

"But how am I supposed to- oh!" Maridel felt a surge of energy, her mind magically connecting to these new powers as though it had been instinct all along. The ground around her became a rippling, yellow puddle-it was at this point she hoped it wasn't due to the four Dr. Peppers she drank-and she began to sink, becoming nothing more than a memory to the plains of Amur.

"Are you certain you're prepared for this, Sarah?" the bishop asked.

"Yes, Master Luc. With the power of the True Earth Rune, I'm certain we will succeed in-what was that?"


"I thought I heard something," said Sarah.

"Have they found us already? Well, no time like the present..."

"Wait a minute. That isn't..."

The two magicians gasped as a girl teleported into the area only a few feet away from them.

"Who are you?" shouted Sarah. "How do you know that technique? Only few of us know it; it is not common knowledge!"

"Just a little something I picked up," replied the silver-haired girl, whose beauty alone made the blonde witch want to shrivel up and die. "And I'm Maridel."

"Maridel? How did you find us here? Are you with the Fire Bringer?"

"I have no interest in the Fire Bringer. I came to join Luc."

This new information caused the normally pale Sarah to become completely red-faced. " do you know his name?" she practically shrieked. "Are you stalking him? Are you going to take him away from me? I'll fucking kill you before that happens, you silver-haired slut!"

"Sarah," scolded Luc. "What on earth is happening to you? It's not like you to be so enraged."

"I don't know," said Sarah, turning to him. "Normally I would just blast the nuisance away with a spell, but this feeling of anger came out of nowhere and took over my body, as though it were trying to prove I was a mega-bitch unworthy of your love or something."

"And you're not!" Maridel shouted, raising her pistol. "Get away from her, Luc! She's evil! EEEEEEVIL!"

"How DARE you accuse me of being evil!" snarled the female magician. "I am merely-"

Maridel shot Sarah in the face.

Sarah's body dropped to the ground, leaving a bewildered expression on the face of the scheming Hikusaak clone.

"It's all right, Luc!" Maridel said, running over to him with open arms. "I know all about your past, how Harmonia was soooo mean to you, and how that icky Leknaat made you fight in all those wars! But I'm here now! Sarah was never good enough to turn you away from the dark path, but I'll save you! I swear on my love for you!" She blushed, not believing the fact that she had just declared her love.

"Um..." Luc's eyes were still fixed on the corpse of Sarah, though the hug was bringing him back to his senses. "Okay. I'll cease my suicidal quest to collect the True Runes in order to destroy this one."

"Of course you will," Maridel whispered, stroking the tortured soul's hair. "Because then you would only succeed in drawing out the rune's power, killing yourself in the process, and the True Runes would go on anyway."

"WHAT?" shouted Luc, pushing the girl away. "Are you serious? Damn. Why didn't Lady Leknaat say something?"

"SHE'S EVIL TOO, LUC!" screamed the girl. "I say she wanted to get rid of you!"

"But for what reason?"

"Who cares! She's evil!"

Luc nodded. "I think you're right. Let's go confront her. But first..." He turned his gaze as another Harmonian bishop stepped into the place.

"Hello, Luc," spoke Sasarai. "I'll be taking my True Earth Rune back now."

Maridel shot him in the face.

"What the hell did you do that for?" demanded Luc.

"Who CARES? He's evil!"

"Between the two of us, he's not the one trying to take out the continent."

"But it's nice that he came!" Maridel went on, as though she hadn't heard Luc's response at all. "I'd almost forgotten about the True Earth Rune. True Earth Rune, come to your new master!" She held up her right hand.

The rune that was once encased in the transparent ball flashed twice on her command and then reappeared on the right palm of the silver-haired girl. "Now, let's go."

Leknaat stood in her tower doing the one thing she always did at that time of day-frying up some tacos.

"Damn it, I'm out of cumin again!" she said, turning away from the stove. Just then, Luc and Maridel appeared in the room.

"What the fuck? Aren't we a bit premature, Luc?"

"A-HA!" shouted Maridel. "What did I tell you, Luc? She was expecting you to come back dead!"

"Um, actually, I wasn't expecting him back for a while. I didn't know whether he'd be alive or dead. But I'm glad to know he's well."

Maridel was silent for a moment before deciding she was infuriated by this. "You horny bitch!" she shouted, drawing her pistol. "Don't you take my man away from me!"

"Don't be ridiculous," said Leknaat. "I'm just concerned for his well-being. I wouldn't have such intentions for the person I think of as a so-"

Maridel shot her in the face.

"Actually, Maridel, she kind of had a point," said Luc. "I doubt she would've made a move on me."

"Who CARES? She's evil!"

"Okay. Well, what do you want to do now?"

"Hmm." Maridel thought for a moment. "Well, it'd be a shame to waste these tacos."

Outside the tower, Luc and Maridel were having a picnic beneath the sun. They gorged on tacos, while sharing loving glances with one another.

"I'm so glad you're here with me, Luc," Maridel sighed. "I was afraid you wouldn't like me for my past."

"What do you mean?" asked Luc. "Did you think I would take any offense to the fact that through impossible circumstances you illegally own a gun with which you used to kill my brother as well as the two women closest to me?"


"I never liked them anyway! Stupid nagging mommy and clingy undertanned waif. You saved me from them, Maridel!"

"Oh, Luc!"

Unfortunately, this made Maridel so excited that she temporarily lost control of a bodily function.

Maridel's gut emitted a low rumble, but it was not traveling upward, exactly. It rolled around inside her body to her surprise, refusing to be contained. She could feel intestine quivering and spasming wildly, surrendering to the escapee's command. At the last minute the powerful but formless thing blasted clear through her hindquarters and through her shorts to the air outside. The ground quaked violently at its advent, an olive green cloud surrounding the girl. For fifteen seconds all three events continued, amplifying the toxic odor a hundred fold.

Maridel gasped at the end of it, as she had been holding her breath the entire time. One brief, final poot and she turned her mortified gaze to Luc, who was staring back at her with an expression not so different from hers.

"Ahhh," she sighed, finally relaxing. "These are some damned good tacos!"

"Oh Maridel," said Luc lovingly. "Even in indigestion, you are like a delicate flower. The gas in your belly reminds me of the roaring ocean crashing against the underside of a cliff. The earth shakes at the power of your sweet methane beauty, your delicate colon falling softly inside the most tender part of you, overjoyed at the moist, airy treasure it has blessed the skies with. All should feel blessed to partake of the resulting aroma, a heavenly potpourri of garbanzos, lactose, and cabbage. Oh, to be your shorts, that I may hold fast to your curves and be the first to fall to the might of such beautiful-and such deadly-chemical warfare."

"Can we do it now?"

"Only if I get to wear your shorts," Luc said, smiling.