The Quest

Chapter Two: The Fellowship of the Chip

Ketsi: You actually continued with it.

Helen: (is ashamed)

Rockman and Blues: (are still making out)

Ketsi: Being a huge un-fan of Anime Girls, I threw some Roll-bashing in there. Despite the fact that Rock'n'Roll are the only het couple I find cute.

Roll: Hey, has anyone seen Rock?

Ketsi: (points to corner)

Roll: (screams and passes out)

Ketsi: I love doing that.

Helen: It's not mine, don't sue. Something I do own is the spinach aisle. No-one can take it from me! Mwah ha ha!

Ketsi: Ew, no-one wants to.

-T-H-E- -- -F-E-L-L-O-W-S-H-I-P- -- -O-F- -- -T-H-E- -- -C-H-I-P-

-B-E-G-I-N-S-

Blues returned to Enzan's house to find the data he had 'been searching for' already there. He formatted it to make it look like his own doing, before collapsing ungracefully just out of sight. When he awoke he was fine, as though the night before had never happened.

Rockman, on the other hand, clattered back home, woke Netto up, and finally sidled onscreen the next morning with his eyes glazed, wincing at every noise. Luckily he had the decency to have a look vaguely akin to shame on his face. But only vaguely.

"What happened to you?"

"Rough night," Rockman murmured. "Please whisper."

"Doing what?" Netto asked, keeping his voice at the same deafening (to a hungover Navi) volume.

Rockman blinked. "I…have no idea."

"What's that?" Netto asked, pointing behind Rockman. There was a piece of paper stuck to the wall behind him. Rockman looked at it.

"Ah."

"What?"

"Now I know what happened."

"Are you going to tell me?"

Rockman looked at the paper, and then back at Netto. "No," he said slowly.

Netto shrugged. "Whatever."

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The next meeting was scheduled for a few nights later.

"No drink this time," Blues said. This time he was going to at least feign responsibility. "Where do we start?"

Rockman glared sourly at Blues, resenting the lack of drink. "Well, usually someone randomly approaches me and tells me what to do."

The two looked around suspiciously. "What do we do until then?" Blues asked.

"Well, usually I run around a bit and try not to get deleted. Sometimes someone comes to annoy me."

Enter Roll, in a distressingly worrying coincidence.

The pink Navi squealed upon seeing Rockman and ignored Blues, throwing herself at Rockman. "Rock! What are you doing here?"

"Erm…"

"Meeting me," Blues said. "So if you'll excuse us, we have something to discuss."

"We're on a quest," Rockman added.

Blues rolled his eyes.

"Ooh, can I join?"

"I guess –"

"It is of no importance to you," Blues said, cutting across Rockman and discreetly standing on him. "You aren't the one being controlled by some unknown force."

Roll's face changed from confusion to glee to fury back and to glee again with an alarming rate. "No! But Meiru is! She always ends up in the wrong place at the wrong time, but luckily Netto-kun is there to save her…and you're there to save me, aren't you, Rock?" Roll batted her eyelids. Rockman edged away. "So I will have to join you."

Blues sighed. "Oh, fine." This comment was met with a look of pure evil from Rockman as Roll clung to his arm. "Is there anyone else who feels controlled by some otherworldly force?"

Enter Forte.

"What?" Rockman was torn between terror and confusion. "Aren't you dead?"

Forte narrowed his eyes at him. "Hey, if you can return from the land of the deleted, so can I."

"Undernet," corrected Blues.

"Land of the Deleted," repeated Forte.

"How did you get back?" Blues asked.

"Plotholes," Forte said. "They're in abundance there."

Blues nodded, familiar with the concept of bizarre portals cropping up at unexpected points in space and time and dumping you in a frighteningly convenient location.

"So…you replied to my call," Blues said, narrowing his eyes. "That's not like you."

"Look, I would have called back if I wasn't dead!"

"Oh, like that's an excuse! You got out of there ages ago, plenty of time for you to call back."

"Why'd you call me anyway? I ate you!"

"Maybe I liked that!"

The two arguing Navis turned to see Rockman looking startled. Part of it was because of the conversation he had just witnessed, but most of it was that his arm was now free. Roll had fled.

Blues looked back at Forte. "So, how do you think your life's being controlled?"

"Apart from the plothole, and being right here when you yelled that? It could be, oh, my entire life. I turn up in places I wasn't going, I fight people I didn't know I was going to fight…I get deleted…then I come back to life…then I get deleted again. My life is definitely not my own."

"So we have four on our Quest then?" Blues asked.

"Three," Rockman said. "I don't think Roll's coming back."

"Good."

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"Netto-kun!" Rockman yelled.

Netto looked up from the comic he was reading. "What?"

"Forte's staying in here for a while, OK?"

"O – what?" Netto stood up and looked on the screen of the PET. The cloaked Navi smiled at him.

"Hi!"

"Rock!" Netto yelled. "He's a bad guy! And –" Netto's face returned to it's usual expression of confusion. "Didn't he die?"

"Yeah. But he's better now."

Netto nodded. "Well that's alright then - hey! That's not good! And why is he here?"

"He has no operator, and most of the Navis on the net want to see him dead again, so I said I'd let his stay here. He's nice, I promise. He was just being controlled by an evil force."

"What, every time?"

"Well, it was either that or stay with Blues or Roll, but Blues is a spoilsport and he scared Roll away."

"Blues helped scare her," Forte added.

"True." Rockman looked back to Netto. "Look, Forte's fine, everything's fine, just get over it."

Rock was met with a blank stare as Netto's tiny brain worked. "Ok." He picked up the PET.

"What? Where are we going?" Rock asked, vaguely panicky.

"We're going to the store. Mom wants some stuff."

"How do you know? She hasn't spoken to you."

Netto frowned. "Good point. I just…know."

Insert shifty looks between Rockman and Forte.

"Do I have to go?"

"No. But something is telling me to take you."

As Netto walked out of the house and down the street, Rockman sent an email to Blues in a confusing code. Literally translated, it says

'The store to Netto is. Going. You Enzan also and come. Are? Plot suspected. I am.'

It is obvious, one should hope, that Rockman created that code.

The reply stated that Enzan was also being sent in that general direction, and that Blues too had a bad feeling about it.

"Enzan."

"Netto."

The two eyed each other coolly. "Enzan-sama, ignore him. Carry on going." Blues' words fell on deaf ears.

"Netto, don't you have somewhere to be?" Rock pleaded.

The two stayed looking at each other for a minute. Suddenly, some member of the general public shouted something.

"ZOMG Viruses!1!"

Someone really should fire the translators on the Rockman games.

Netto, in pure loser protagonist fashion, turned dramatically and promptly fell over. "Where?"

Enzan mimicked him, but was far more stylish, and remained upright. "I'll handle it. I'm better than him."

Nobody argued.

"There are viruses in the spinach aisle! ZOMG!1!"

Netto ran, but suddenly stopped. "You know what? I have no idea where the spinach aisle is."

"Do they even have one?"

Forte pointed. "There it is." He smiled.

Netto got there to find Enzan already plugged in and fighting viruses. He threw a mini tantrum, then set Rockman and Forte onto the net.

Forte had to restrain himself from absorbing everything, and resigned to hitting the Met-Hats with a cyber-stick.

Once everything was gone, the three Navis heard a voice. It was loud, eerie, and broadcast through the loudspeakers at the store too.

"Netto Hikari. Enzan Injiun. Blues, Rockman and Forte." There was a dramatic pause. "I know your names."

Netto blinked. "So? So do the general public."

"Haha!" The voice said. "But noone know about Forte, do they? See? I'm great. I'm all omnipotent and that."

Enzan rolled his eyes. "What do you want?"

"I'll get back to you on that. But your Navis had better be wary. Because I'm going to get them. One by one."

And with that, the voice was gone.

"What do you think that was all about, Rockman?"

Rock rolled his eyes. "Oh, I don't know. Maybe there's someone after us. Again."

"Really?"

Rockman sighed, and eyed Forte, who's hands were flexing, desperate to absorb some data. "Ok, we're going to have to Plug Out now. Forte's getting twitchy."

Blues followed suit. "Enzan-sama, I am concerned," Blues said as Enzan left Netto behind, ranting about the dangers of an ex-evil Navi inhabiting your Personal Terminal.

"I know. I am too. I'm not sure if you should go back online for a while."

Blues raised an eyebrow. "You think I cannot protect myself?"

"I've lost you before; I don't want it to happen again."

Blues blinked at this comment which almost showed emotion, then nodded. "Alright. I will only go online for Net Police duties. Yes?"

Enzan smiled. "Thank you, Blues."

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-E-N-D-

Ketsi: Will Blues ever be allowed back online? What is the evil voices plan? Will Forte become evil again?

Helen: It's unlikely you'll find out this, (but you'll find out more) in the next chapter of 'The Quest' – Obligatory Romance!

Ketsi: Ok, ok, so I had to put in the Shonen-ai. Y'all know I'm addicted.

-

"What are you doing?"

"Taking drastic measures."