The Adventures of Skirt Boy and Stabby Girl
A/N- What happens when you put five authors together on a forum with one prompt: Albel and Nel become Elicoor's superheroes, the defenders of justice: Skirt Boy and Stabby Girl! Each SO author added on to the previous one's post (the game's called POPCORN) until… well, lots of craziness, a semi-plot, and something impossible to predict emerged. And now for the viewing pleasure of you non-forumers, we bring you our venture into psychosis. Yup, here it is, the beginning of the end of all our sanity. Yay!
The Crazy Authoress CAT: Yours truly, who thought up the plot and POPCORN method on my forum, SO Forum Fun)
NetOwl: The super-fun SO2 (mainly) author whose knack for humor translated sooo well into SO3. Also, the first after me to post a segment.
Psychodog- Now disconnected from her internet, but until then, one of the most enthusiastic (and hyper) authors on our fun project. COME BACK!
Blue Persuasion: What more do I have to say? Everyone knows Blue in her infinite coolness. Arguably as off her rocker as me.
Raven the Dark Angel: One of the first supporters of the idea. –glomp- Also, a freakin' awesome random humor writer.
POST ONE: Crazy Authoress CAT- And so it begins…
Amid the ancient ruins of Mosel, two ominously black-suited people sat at a stone conference table. Even though it was a an unusual place to find two such people, they both seemed at ease enough to be making inane small talk.
"So, Romeria, you're looking well today."
"Thank you, Arzei. I could say the same about you."
"So why are we dressed in these 'suit' things?"
Romeria paused and considered.
"Well, mainly because Cliff said it'd be more appropriate for such a meeting. Plus, I like the Rayban sunglasses."
"Ah. That makes sense. They do look badass."
Far away in an inn in the town of Peterny, Fayt Leingod had a nightmare and began screaming unintelligibly about something involving the letters U, P, and the number three.
There was a long, awkward pause between the two royals as they ran out of things to talk about. Romeria coughed politely and examined one hand for broken nails.
"Wanna get married?" Arzei said, grinning lecherously.
"Do you ask every woman you see to marry you?"
"Maybe…" Arzei pouted sullenly.
Romeria glared pointedly over her sunglasses at him, her red eyes making her seem (if possible) more possessed.
"So I'll take that as a no?"
"A brilliant deduction, Arzei." She sighed.
Arzei paused again, rethinking his battle strategy. Finally, he paused and turned to the person sitting next to the Queen.
"What about you, lovely handmaiden? I could take as my wife and the whole of Airyglyph would hail you for your beauty."
The person in question, whose hair had been hiding 'her' face, jolted up out of his chair sharply, a look of vehement horror and disgust on his face.
"I'm not a girl!" Laselle screeched, his voice hitting a note high enough to deafen Farleen.
"S-Sorry!" Arzei stuttered, also horror-struck, "The dress threw me off!"
"It's not a dress, it's a robe!" Laselle glared, "Besides, that joke's getting old. Between you, Albel, Cliff, and the little girl down the street from me, everyone's heard it by now."
"Doesn't make it any less true…" Arzei hummed in a sing-song voice.
"Silence!" Romeria commanded in a menacing voice, red eyes glowing.
Immediately, the two men fell silent and quit jabbing at each other with taunts of androgynousness.
"Now, Arzei, shouldn't Albel be here soon?"
"He usually responds to the Flanbel call rather quickly; he'll be here any moment. But where's your star spy, the lovely and always-rejecting-me Ms. Zelpher?" Arzei half-pouted.
"I sent out the work-a-holic signal a good half hour ago. She too should be arriving any--"
The two monarchs were interrupted by the loyal servants in question bursting into the room. Both looked bedraggled, bloody, and generally pissed off. Of course, that meant that they didn't look much different than usual.
"Your majesty—Nel Zelpher reporting for duty." The first warrior, a redhead whose fists were clenched and whose eyes gleamed with psychosis, lowered herself into a bow.
"Excellent dramatic timing, Nel. We were just speaking of you." Romeria smiled, shooting a smug look at Arzei.
Arzei in turn looked expectantly at his technicolored warrior, who glared at him witheringly.
"Why can't you be more like Nel?" Arzei whimpered resentfully.
Albel stopped and glared at his king.
"If you ever say that again, I'll be compelled to abdicate you from the throne forcefully."
Arzei paled, and tried to ignore both the way Albel was caressing his sword and Romeria's giggles.
"Errr.. never mind that right now. I'm sure you two are wondering why you two were called."
Albel growled and Nel had to restrain him to keep him from attacking his king.
"What my colleague means to say," Nel said, rolling her eyes, "is that we don't wonder so much why we were summoned as why we were summoned here."
"We only had one aqua veil! I had to share with the wench. Plus, she doesn't know how to read a map!"
"Well, maybe if you hadn't insulted the seller, he would have given us the right map! I should have left you to shrivel up like a raisin in the desert!" Nel growled, retrieving her map and flourishing it in Albel's face. "In case you didn't notice, this says 'Peterny' in big letters across the top."
"10,000 fol was an outrageous price! No way was I gonna give that much to a crazy old man! I got a bargain on this one."
"I knew I shouldn't have left the negotiation to you!"
If there was one thing the King and Queen had in common, it was a fondness for their angsty little orphan warriors, so they ignored the argument that was taking place. Only after the angsty orphans' weapons had been drawn and they were trying to stab each other in vital organs did the two royals deem it necessary to break them up.
"Enough." Romeria called.
The two continued trying to kill each other.
"Nel… do I have to give you a time-out?"
Nel immediately backed down, but not without sticking out her tongue in Albel's direction. Albel reciprocated, but then paused and turned to Arzei.
"Really, why are we all the way out here? During the war it was neutral territory, but now it seems pointless to come—"
"Well, if you really want to know, it's because…" Arzei paused for dramatic effect, then noticed that Albel was preparing to draw his katana again. "it's our secret hide-out!"
"Secret hide-out?" Nel scoffed, "That's so completely dumb--!"
Romeria glared at her from across the table.
"It was also my idea." She said.
Tiny beads of sweat began appearing around Nel's brow, while Albel looked on with a sardonic smirk plastered across his face.
"You didn't let me finish, your highness! I meant to say… uhh.. The enemy will think that it's so completely dumb. Therefore, it's brilliant! Your strategic cunning knows no limits, Holy Mother Queen."
Albel broke into a fit of coughing amid which one could easily make out the words suck-up.
"Shut up, Nox!"
Romeria groaned and rolled her eyes, deeming it wise to move the meeting along before the two attempted to assassinate each other… again.
"At any rate, your mission, should you choose to accept it—"
Albel's eyes brightened immediately.
"You mean we have a choice?"
"No." Romeria sighed.
"Because. Anyways, as you know, though you all defeated the foreign threat, the Vile Wind has not dissipated. Many of our own citizens are beginning to be turned into monsters, both figuratively and literally, by this plague. And so we had to choose the brightest and the best—"
"And the most mentally unbalanced." Arzei piped up helpfully.
"As I was saying, we needed a team of the best warriors our countries could muster. Unfortunately, you two are the only ones who fit the bill."
Albel and Nel looked at each other warily, and immediately, both of their eyes widened.
"You don't mean that I'm going to have to work with the worm, do you?" Albel hissed, red eyes narrowing ominously.
"Wh- What about Clair? She's technically of higher rank than me! Shouldn't she be doing this?" Nel said, searching desperately for an excuse to get her out of her predicament and not caring if she was dragging her best friend down too.
"No, she and Adray are on leave because they he created another contest to marry off Clair."
Nel deflated like a popped balloon and sighed, resigning herself to her fate.
"Fine. I'll do it, but that doesn't mean I'll like it." She pouted, crossing her arms.
"Likewise." Albel snorted.
Both Romeria and Arzei's faces lit up into such bright smiles that the two minions were immediately wary. And by wary, I mean trying to bolt for the door.
"Alright, then!" Arzei chirped happily, "Laselle, bring out the uniforms!"
"Uniforms…?" Nel and Albel sputtered at the same time.
Laselle bristled slightly at being commanded by the king of the country that was formerly his enemy, but one look from Romeria silenced any protest he might have made. With minimal sulking, he dragged a chest out from the corner of the conference room and lifter the lid with a pompous flourish. Inside were two bright red bodysuits (-cough- leotards –cough-), one with a pair of tights and a sarong, the other with an impossibly short skirt. The one with the tights (presumably the male version, though with Albel it wasn't a sure bet he'd go for it instead of the skirt) was emblazoned with big purple letters reading SB. Likewise, Nel's outfit had the same kind of lettering, though it substituted SB for SG.
Both warriors took one look at the costumes and immediately dove at them, weapons in hand. After several minutes of struggle, they finally resurfaced, though the costumes showed no signs of damage.
"What in the name of Apris did you make these of?" Nel panted resentfully.
Meanwhile, Albel had become entangled in his uniform during the course of the fight and was panicking.
"Help! The damned thing is sticking to me! It won't come off!" he said, valiantly continuing the struggle, occasionally pausing to glare at the world in general.
"It's something Cliff showed us!" Arzei said, grinning like an excited five-year-old, "It's called… SPANDEX!"
There was a collective shudder between Nel and Albel at the sound of the word.
"Now why don't you go change and we can brief you on the rest." Romeria smiled graciously as the two retched, "Plus, from now on, we shall refer to you respectively as Skirt Boy and Stabby Girl for security reasons."
"Fine, but I do not call this job satisfaction." Nel grumbled, snatching up her suit and stomping into the next room.
"Cliff is going to die." Albel growled, still trying to detangle himself.
POST TWO: NetOwl- ROF laughter guaranteed!
"Your Majesty," said Nel, "Do you mind telling me what benefits might be derived from wearing these borderline obscene costumes?"
"Certainly," said the Queen. "Your uniforms have been tailored to your strengths. Our manufacturer imbued yours with the same runological charm that we used on your regular Crimson Blade uniform. No matter how high in the air you jump, and no matter what angle an observer might take for fighting you, the skirt stays between the observer and you, ensuring that no one will ever get a glimpse at your underwear, even in the heat of battle. Such a thing would surely mortify you and ruin your chances of defeating your opponent, would it not?"
"Surely it would, Your Majesty," said Nel.
"And Albel's uniform has been treated with a different runological charm," the Queen continued. "As you should well be aware, his hair is an interesting color."
"Duly noted," said Nel.
"Ah," said the Queen, "but did you ever notice that his hair is not just one interesting color, but two?"
"That never came up in conversation," said Nel.
"It took our most secret intelligence gathering service to learn this about him, but Albel apparently uses so many hair care products to achieve his desired look that he has, shall we say, dandruff problems."
"Dandruff problems, Your Majesty?"
"Severe dandruff problems. Even the most potent of dandruff shampoos cannot mask the sea of snowy white flakes that infest whatever clothing he wears. As he is the only one in the world with dandruff that bad, we feared that it would give away his presence on high security missions. Albel's dandruff is unmistakable. But his new uniform has on it a runological charm for warding off dandruff. With it, Albel can walk around fearlessly."
"Not bad," said Albel as he glanced at his shoulders. "I don't see a thing."
"That is as it should be," said the King. "If all is well, then I believe we can begin discussion of your mission."
"By all means," said Nel.
The Queen picked up the discussion. "Your first task as Skirt Boy and Stabby Girl..."
"Hey," Nel interrupted, "Why does his name get to go first?"
"Because I'm the team leader," said Albel.
"Why is that?" said Nel. "Shouldn't the leader be the most skilled member of the group?"
"Precisely," said Albel. "Some pathetic Aquarian tagalong worm shouldn't get first dibs on team naming rights."
"I'm a Crimson Blade, though!" said Nel. "I have twice the skill you have with spying. You're just a brute of a swordsman."
"I've seen you fight," said Albel. "Until you joined up with those filthy offworlders, you were nothing. You would have been kidnapped, tortured, and executed a dozen times over had you not had so many pointless cannon fodder flunkies at your beck and call. Did you ever tell Tynave and Farleen what happened to their predecessors?"
"That was a fluke!" said Nel.
"What about the ones before them? And before them? I sense a pattern."
"Yeah, so what?" said Nel. "Spying is a dangerous job. Someone has to die, and it sure as heck isn't going to be me."
"How noble of you," said Albel. "I hope you enjoy your new role as my expendable sidekick."
Nel mumbled under her breath. "I'm sure I will." She then shouted, "And I'm sure I'll stick a freaking knife in your back when you least expect it!"
Her face turned red. "Oops. I said the loud part quiet and the quiet part loud."
"Enough, both of you," said the Queen. "If all goes well..."
The King coughed. "Yeah, right," he said under his breath.
"...Neither of you should die."
The King said, "And Albel is only first in the team name because we put the two secret code names in alphabetical order."
"That's not fair!" said Nel. "Why don't you put our real names in alphabetical order."
"Fine," said the King. "Albel, followed by Nel."
"Still not fair," said Nel. "Go by our last names."
"Fine," said the King. "Nox, followed by Zelpher."
"Drat," said Nel.
"You really are pathetic," said Albel.
"Now, about the mission," said the Queen.
TO BE CONTINUED… in Volume Two. Bwahahaha! Be prepared.
Also, if you like what you just read, if you head on over to my forum, SO Forum Fun, you can join in with us too. We're always looking for new and fun people to recruit, so give it a shot. This means you! –threatens readers with cardboard knife-wielding penguins-
Now… please review. –makes puppy eyes- We'd all appreciate it greatly!