Disclaimer: I own neither the DMC cast nor MST3K. I do, however, own little 3-inch statues of Dante, Trish, and Lucia, and I seem to now own the fake movie MSTed in this, as Nagia has given it to me.
Composition notes: In order to replicate Dante's level of pre-knowledge about the movie (title, topic, and random billboards he's seen around: Dante is not a guy to sit through commercials), I was not involved in the making in the review, will begin reading it only when I get to the point where they start it, and will not revise those bits.
In my fic-verse, I go with the VJ canon that Eva's spirit is present in the amulet and that Trish is channeling her to some degree. This is set in the night after "Beautiful Music," which takes place 5AM. I mention there that Lady is coming over, and the reason she's coming over is to see this movie with them. "Life's a Stage" starts themorning after. This takes place around 2 years after 2, 4 years after 1, and over 15 years after 3.Hence, Lady has hit 30.
Two other theories are that DMC1 is 20 years after DMC3, in which case Lady would be 40 as of this fic, or 1 year after it, in which case she'd still be in her teens (does anyone have non-fanon of her age? I've seen 14, 16, and 21), but I'm going with this.
Trish put a pen in to hold her place in the huge tome as her ears detected the motorcycle that had been heading towards them stop in front of the shop. Basic human information, her ass. It had not escaped her knowledge that most of the information in this guide was home/office repair and maintenance tips. Yet another customer that just had to have the thrill of the exotic, coming into the office despite the warnings of periodic attacks of demonic assassins.
She was idly wondering how much office furniture would be destroyed this time, when her brain kicked into overdrive, and she dived behind the desk to grab the Sparda. A shrill noise, one she didn't recognize. As she was trying to figure out what demon had made it, she heard it again. And again. The creature was annoyed. Yet it wasn't attacking, and when she looked at the door, she saw a human woman she was pretty sure she'd seen before raising an eyebrow at her, and jabbing an arm forward to the right of the door in time with the noises. She blinked.
She heard Dante's bike roar up as the woman asked, "Well? Can I come in?"
"What's wrong, Lady?" Dante said, coming up behind the woman.
"Beatrice isn't letting me in," She said, turning to him. "I've been standing here, ringing the doorbell, and she just stares at me." She gestured above the saloon-style doors.
…doorbell? Uhhh…. Trish winced. Now Dante was going to think she didn't even know what a doorbell was! Since when did Devil May Cry have a doorbell!
Dante laughed. "Probably the first time anyone's ever used it when she's been in." He pushed through the double doors, beckoning Lady to follow him. When they were in the room, he said, "Trish. Lady. Lady? Trish," pointing to each of them in a very shorthand style of introductions.
Trish groaned. "We've met, Dante."
At the same time, Lady said, "Trish? Oh, sorry, I got it mixed up with the Divine Comedy person again."
Dante sighed. "Reasonable mistake to make." He hefted the bag he was carrying. "You're a bit early, but I've got the pizzas here, and I stole one of the special promo copies while I was out in LA dealing with the nut who summoned all of those Pyromancers and set off wildfires to toast the suburbs."
Lady nodded, interrupting. "Yeah, I heard about that." Quit bragging, she said with her rolling eyes.
Dante could roll his eyes too. "Anyways, do you want to start the movie now?"
Lady nodded. "Pizza on a couch in front of the TV. Takes me back to when I crashed at your shop…"
"Which had crashed to the ground, practically." Dante interjected.
"After the thing with my nutcase of a father," she sighed, nostalgic. "You know, I used to keep missing my father, no matter how hard I tried… thank you so much for crippling him for me, Dante." A friendly predatory grin.
Dante laughed too, at what was obviously an old in-joke. "Well, I don't deserve all the credit."
She shook her head at him, suddenly sober. "No one's heard anything. At least that I've heard."
Dante nodded. "And you can't ask, because if they know you're asking for me, they're not going to tell you if they won't tell me. But thanks for keeping your ear to the ground, Lady."
She shrugged. "Family is family, Dante. If it weren't for my father…"
Dante snorted, holding up a hand, "If it weren't for your father, Vergil would have just found a way to enter hell and get our father's sword on his own, Lady. This isn't your job, finding out what happened to him."
She shrugged at what was obviously an old argument. "It is my family matter too. But not just because of my father." She turned around and headed toward the doors.
"Where're you going?" Dante called after her.
"To activate the wards on my bike," she said over her shoulder. "Motorcycles are not safe around you!"
Dante winced theatrically, and yelled, "We'll be in the living room!"
Trish sat on the across from Lady as Dante and Nevan pulled chairs and couches into a rough arc around the television, Nevan with the help of her bats, for everyone who wanted to watch, and set up the pizza, drinks, and other refreshments on a table out of the way so people could grab plates. Cerberus plopped down on the floor in front of the TV.
Lady seemed to like Orange Milanos and vodka. The rocket launcher she wore on her back like Trish usually wore the Sparda leaned against the back of the armchair that was usually Dante's. Trish wasn't very good at guessing ages yet, but she looked around 24 which meant, for a Hunter… somewhere over 24, probably, as they could use healing spells to keep themselves young physically: humans got slower as they aged, and fighting demons with creaky bones was a death warrant. They'd teamed with her, like the Redgraves and a few others before, but Dante was right, those hadn't been social occasions: she didn't really know much about her. Short black hair so it wouldn't hinder her in a fight, trim fit build, white tee and jean shorts.
Well, she was probably around 40 at least, because Vergil had seen her at Temen Ni Gru, and certainly the Hunters wouldn't have let an amateur anywhere near that tower.
If she hadn't betrayed Mundus, and if he had defeated Dante (two very big ifs), this 'Mary Arkham' had been one of the first ones on her target list.
Mundus had been so startled when the fool Arkham had come to him, presenting him with a descendant of one of Sparda's human allies, a sacrifice in exchange for power. And a descendant of the one he'd thought dead, killed in order to bind Mundus', Sparda's, and the whole Underworld's power.
But then, Sparda had always had a few tricks with resurrection spells. And her blood could be used to break the seal, yes, but also to restore it.
Arkham was lucky he hadn't ended up in Mundus' hands. He wasn't kind to failures. But still… she knew the tale of Sparda was well known in the human world. She'd seen some games, like Dungeons and Dragon's expansion set: Dante's mother had collected memorabilia after her husband had disappeared. It must be… interesting, to have these movies made about someone you were descended from. To have their legacy, their fight for the world, remembered and praised.
So why was Beowulf smirking?
Dante banged on the wall by the big flat-screen TV for attention. He'd gotten it last month, griping about how much you had to pay to get something that wouldn't be completely obsolete in a year. "In celebration of Lady being over the hill…"
"I'm not over the hill! I'm barely 30, dammit! You're older than me, you geezer!"
"And of Hollywood completing yet another abuse of historical fact in the eternal quest for cash, I present to you, The Life of a Man." Dante brandished the DVD case. "And open up the MSTing by asking why didn't they name it, The Life of a Devil?"
"Life of a Traitor!" Beowulf roared, laughing, and punched the two pillows the giggling Ebony and Ivory threw at him back to them.
Dante ignored him as well, demonstrating that he did indeed have the biggest mouth. "The film is not yet out in theatres, Ladies and gents, and thus it is our sacred duty as Hunters to see it and evaluate how much of an increase in the popularity of demonology, and hence our bizness," a mock official tone, "it will cause, and also the specific details and the total amount of incorrect information regarding demonkind it contains, so we know what to tell people not to do. Therefore, the combat and ritual scenes must be rigorously observed. Any shouts of, 'Rip his head off!' or 'No, you mortal fool, goats taste foul!' during the actual fight and/or sacrifice will make me kick your ass out. After, however, is just fine." A grin.
Lady snorted, pencil and notepad at the ready.
"And on to the comedy." Dante stuck the DVD in and sat down on the opposite side of the couch that Nevan was sprawled on, which somehow despite being in a prime position had ended up the only free seat. Trish wondered if Nevan could give her tips as Dante fiddled with the remote. The seduction manual she had definitely didn't have things like that in it.
Dante gave up, bashed the remote against the arm of the couch, and the movie started.
Comments flew thick and fast, ranging from Cerberus' growled, "I breathe ice, not fire!" to Alastor's snickering, "But you bleat like one!" to Nevan's aggrieved, "What does she have that I don't?" which caused Dante to respond, "A shitty life expectancy?" which made Nevan kick him in the shin, sprawled out on the couch.
Rudra pointed out the historical errors like 'Sparda's' wildly inaccurate Centurion uniform, although at least it was set in Roman lands instead of anachronistic superstitious medieval peasants while Agni complained that that wasn't how heads looked when stepped on, and Beowulf jeered 'Sparda's' every appearance. At the first appearance of the demonic hordes, Dante groaned, "Shit, they look like vampires. What do you bet they're going to think it's as easy to do my job as it is Buffy's? One hit with wood." Trish laughed. "Splinters!"
Lady winced at the appearances of her 'ancestress', who wasn't even a priestess in this movie, but a hetaera, or high-level prostitute, and went for more orange-flavored vodka.
Dante hadn't been sure if Matier was going to send Lucia over or not, but she managed to get her homework done early enough to come over, Dante heaving a sigh of relief when he scooted far over on the two-seat couch, beckoning Nevan to do the same and setting her down between them.
However, in order to avoid death-by-angry-parent he had to cover her eyes during the faked love scenes to avoid corrupting an 8-year-old genetic construct. Nevan snorted at Mundus having antlers on his head. "Horny bastard…"
Trish cheered Lucia's angry comments about disrespecting a heroic God when 'Sparda's' lines got too melodramatic for even someone raised on devil-worshipping sermons to tolerate.
Red eyes, longer hair, fangs and claws when he was in a difficult fight were the closest thing to a devil trigger, much "Handsomer than a big-ass dragonfly," Trish commented wryly. Dante laughed, "Yeah, of course my old man was handsome. Just look at me." Then he frowned, adding, "The teenage girls are going to go nuts."
'Sparda' had dispatched the humans realistically easily, but Beowulf had grumped at how ridiculously weak 'demons' required more than a quarter minute. "If he had been that weak, I would have dispatched him simply! He was a fool, but a strong one," Beowulf had to admit, his dislike of Sparda not able to overpower the honor due a strong foe.
Eventually, though, the movie ended, with the obligatory human sacrifice and 'Sparda' treasuring her memory forever and protecting the world in her name. The credits rolled, and Nevan summoned her bats to fly to Geneva to represent Dante at the Sparda bank board meeting.
Lady conked out on the couch, too drunk to undo the spell on her bike, and deciding that even with Hunter reflexes that wasn't a good way to drive the 380 miles back to her place.
And Trish took the DVD up to her room to watch it again, sitting on her bed wrapped in her black velvet cloak, the Sparda by her side.