A/N: On the first day of (Winter Holiday) my true love gave to meeee, a BowserxPeach adventure stor-rieeee *heart*

This is just a prologue, a little tease if you will. It's not related to YotW, but hopefully you'll still find it fun. Let me know what you think! This is a particular challenge for me because I'm not 100% comfortable writing action scenes. If you're a confident coach in that field and willing to tutor, send me a PM and let's talk about it!

As always, thanks for reading and leaving reviews! Oh, oh, and...I don't own Mario or any of the characters. (Has anyone found out definitively if it's necessary to write that or not?)


"Help!" screeched Princess Peach as she once again found herself held against her will in Bowser's Clown Car, the most jovial of all the Koopa King's air transports. "Somebody please help me!"

Always with the yelling, why can't she be quiet? Bowser rubbed his pounding temples and growled. "All that screaming isn't going to do you any good this time, Princess. First of all, since we're flying over the ocean and all, the only things that can hear you are the seagulls and me; personally, I don't think the seagulls appreciate the disturbance either. Secondly, I'm taking you somewhere far away, where the Idiot Brothers will never find you, so you better get used to it and settle down."

Peach fumed as Bowser resumed piloting the copter. Screaming while nobody could hear her would only serve to damage her throat, that much was true, but she also wanted to make Bowser's kidnapping attempts as miserable for him as possible.

She panicked trying to think of ways to escape the dreaded copter. Half-forming an idea, Peach leaned over the edge of the Clown Car in attempt to discern how fast they were traveling.

Bowser caught sight of the disobedient princess in his peripheral vision. As if reading Peach's mind, Bowser stuck his claw out and grabbed her by the waist. "What do you think you're doing?" he roared, disbelieving she would entertain thoughts of jumping. At their current speed and height, even if she survived impact, she'd be far too damaged to swim to shore.

"Get off of me!" she screamed, struggling to get away. She struck Bowser's arm with her balled fists. "Why don't you take me home, you brute."

In retaliation, Bowser heaved Peach over his shoulder, causing Peach to scream and kick harder. "If you don't put me down right this instant…you-you'll be sorry, you menace!"

Bowser snorted; now the princess thought she was in a position to make ultimatums? "Blah, blah, blah. I'll put you down when you stop having stupid thoughts of escaping."

Unfortunately, as Bowser finished taunting the princess, Peach landed a misaimed kick to the central dashboard control panel. The heel of her shoe penetrated the fragile glass screen, releasing bright sparks while warning chimes issued from the speakers.

"Whoa there! What are you trying to do?" He yelled, dropping the princess to the bottom of the copter. He attempted to regain control of the Clown Car.

"Shoot, we're losing altitude." Gripping the yoke, Bowser's muscles strained as he called upon all his strength to pull the Car up; however, it was no use. The chimes became louder as the vehicle neared the choppy surface of the ocean. Peach clung to the edge of the cup for dear life as she braced herself for impact. The Clown Car entered the water with a huge splash.

The crash left Peach discombobulated as she plunged into the frigid salt water. Her delicate fingers clawed at cool, smooth fiberglass. She found herself trapped underwater beneath the overturned Clown Car. Her lungs burned for oxygen as she dove to free herself, kicking furiously to the surface. When she emerged gasping for air, seaweed and wet hair plastered her face and she could not spot Bowser.

In the distance, she saw a shimmering green island. As the Clown Car sank, her only hope was to swim toward the island and hope she did not become too tired to make it. Her long dress grew heavy with moisture, making it difficult to swim; however, she carried on, her adrenaline trumping her weariness.

At last, after a lengthy and strenuous swim, sand and pebbles materialized beneath her bare feet; she had long since abandoned her pink satin pumps and pristine white gloves to the watery depths of the ocean. A wave washed over her as she collapsed on the shore. She hoped the glow of the afternoon sun might warm her shivering body. Instead, the wind whipping across the dunes chilled the water on her skin and made matters worse.

Peach sat up and attempted to wring the water out of her sopping dress and hair. She wiped the salt water away from her bleary eyes and examined her surroundings. A short distance away, she saw a large spiked shell that looked as though it belonged to Bowser. Scrambling to her feet, she went to take a look. Upon closer inspection, she found the shell to be empty. That's odd. She clutched herself miserably from the cold and continued to survey the landscape.

A short distance away from the ocean, the sand turned to grassy hills. Peach ventured up to the grass to find shelter from the wind amongst the sparse patches of trees that populated the area. A cluster of granite boulders soon caught her interest as a potential shelter.

When she ambled over to the dull, glittering rocks, she noticed they held a piece of fabric. She grasped the fabric and examined it. It looked like a black flag with an equilateral triangle cut from one of the sides. Peach gasped. Could this be a pirate flag? To Peach's dismay, the material would not provide enough coverage to retain her modesty if she were to remove her cloying, wet dress. The fabric was smooth, silky, and damp. This material…it's not like a flag at all. It's like somebody's—

"Hey!" the sharp yell startled Peach out of her thoughts and made her drop the cloth in question on the ground. "What do you think you're doing with those?"

Peach turned to find herself face-to-face with Bowser, who looked upset as he hid behind a tree, hands clamped over his private bits.

"Oh Stars!" Peach shrieked, whipping back around. "Bowser, what are you—will you please put on some clothes? "

"I would if you would give them to me," he growled through gritted teeth.

Peach gritted her own teeth as she scooped up the silky black boxer shorts with her big toe and, without turning around, used her leg to fling them in Bowser's general direction with a soft "Ew."

Bowser rolled his eyes, "Oh, c'mon, they're clean."

Peach crossed her arms in a huff. Bowser quickly dressed while her back was turned to him. "So do you make getting naked your first priority on every unknown island where you crash?"

"Yeah, I guess so, because this is the first time I've ever crashed on anything. I guess we have you to thank for that one. So there, thank you Princess Peach. If you wanna know, it's uncomfortable to walk around in a wet shell, especially if your underwear get wet; everything gets all sticky and-"

"Thank you! As it turns out, I didn't want to know," Peach interrupted. She had already heard and seen much more of Bowser than she had ever wanted to hear and see in her whole life. She shuddered again with the cold as the sun was setting and the fog rolled in from the sea.

"Well, I'm gonna go get my shell. Luckily for us, I figured out that we're not on an 'unknown island' after all. We landed right on the island that I was planning to take you to! We're a ways from the castle though, so we'd better get moving if we wanna get there before it gets dark."

"Oh no you don't!" yelled the alarmed princess, "I'm not going anywhere with you. I'm going to stay right here until the Mario Brothers find me."

"Oh? And how long do you think that'll take? You're telling me you wanna stay here in wet clothes with no food, no fresh water, and no tent? You don't even know what terrible beasts are on this island."

Peach folded her arms as she watched Bowser waddle down to the shore. He looked so odd walking without his shell. He was right, but she hated the thought of going along with anything he wanted her to do.

She tried to think of a good retort as Bowser came back from the shore with his shell.

"Heh heh, the tide almost took it away," he mused, halfway to himself.

"I can't travel; I have no shoes." Peach explained, pointing to her wiggling feet. A lame excuse, even in her own mind.

Bowser looked her over. Was that the best excuse she could think of? "Alright," he chirped, "I'll carry you!"

Before Peach could protest, Bowser picked her up and cradled her in his arms.

"Put me down, you reptile!"

"Oh yeah? Now you wanna walk all the way? There are sharp rocks and thorny plants, and things; but if you insist…"

Peach huffed and stopped complaining. At least in Bowser's grasp, she had protection from the wind, and he was also plenty warm.

"Ah Peach, have you gone on a diet? You're so light I could carry you all day."

Peach sniffed at his compliment and watched the rolling scenery. The island was lush with tender green grasses as far as the eye could see. She could see the faint glow of lights in the far distance. That must be the castle. Peach yawned, her body and mind fatigued from all the events. She could not see much in the twilight so she closed her eyes as they grew weary of the strain. Despite her displeasure and apprehension, Bowser's steady breaths and swaying footsteps lulled her into a peaceful sleep.

Bowser looked down at his graceful sleeping princess, feeling her body rise and fall with every gentle breath. In truth, the day's activities of kidnapping, swimming, and now hiking while carrying the extra weight of the sleeping princess were beginning to tire him. However, seeing that beautiful figure draped across his arms, sleeping tenderly in his embrace, made it all worth it and he would gladly walk three times the distance to have his precious Peach this near to him.

Nevertheless, he was glad when they drew near to his castle, where all the Koopalings would be waiting for him. Bowser narrowed his eyes when he found no sentry outside the gate. Who was in charge of this? Don't those Koopalings know anything about guarding a fortress? I could be anyone right now; I could be the Mario Brothers for crying out loud!

Silently vowing to lecture his kids on proper defense strategy, he opened the creaky door of the fortress and found the building strangely quiet and empty. What's going on here? Could this be a surprise party? The Koopalings might plan something of the sort, but today was not his birthday. He looked down at the waking princess; today was not her birthday either.

"Huh? Is this the castle?" Peach asked. "Why is it so dark?"

"I dunno, all the Koopalings are supposed to be here," he replied. Peach squirmed in his grasp and he reluctantly set her down. "I'll show you your room in a minute; I'm gonna head into the throne room and see what's going on."

With nothing else to do, Peach hesitantly followed Bowser to the large red double doors leading to the throne room. Bowser jerked on of the handles and was shocked to find the door noncompliant.

"It's locked!" he shouted, furrowing his brows. "I'll take care of this!" Bowser took a step back and rammed into the doors with all his might. The doors shook and made cracking sounds. He rammed the doors again, throwing his full body weight onto the damaged doors. Peach gasped as the doors splintered and cracked at the hinges, allowing Bowser to demolish the door with his next attack.

Inside the throne room sat a single Ninjerry with his eyes narrowed. The golden assassin did not waste any time with words, instead offering a swift shuriken in way of greeting. With only a scrape to his left arm, Bowser miraculously dodged the flying metal star while the Ninjerry quickly bounced off walls in an effort to confound the Koopa King. Advancing on the speedy intruder, Bowser ducked another attack from the Ninjerry and unleashed a powerful fire blast, instantly roasting the unwelcome guest.

Peach's curiosity got the better of her and she stepped forward to watch Bowser check the charred body. Sorting through layers of scorched clothes revealed no reward; however, clutched in the Ninjerry's hand was a piece of paper, too burnt to read.

"It looks like a receipt," offered Peach.

"Dirty ninjas," growled Bowser. "Willing to do anything for money." Bowser kicked the body aside and grabbed a set of keys from a small urn to the left of the grand throne. He took off from the throne room and down the stone stairs with curious Peach in hot pursuit.

As they descended into a dark underground passage, the princess was not sure if she should remind Bowser of the injury on his left arm. The shallow scrape was dripping blood down the sides of his limb. The sight of blood had always made Peach feel uneasy. Though it would have taken little effort to heal the wound, in her anger she said nothing and averted her eyes from the messy crimson streams. Any weakness in her enemy would give the Mario Brothers strength when they came to rescue her.

Bowser descended more steps into a chilly dungeon. Inside were all of the servants and guards of the castle locked in a cell together.

"Your Bravery!" they cried, surprised to see their leader had come to rescue them.

"Don't get too happy. Nobody's leaving this cell until you all can explain what happened and where are my kids?"

A brave Koopatrol stepped to the front, "Sir! It was awful, Sir. There were hundreds of them in an ambush attack with explosives and magic. They cut our communication lines and we had no backup, Sir."

"Hundreds of what?" Bowser growled.

"Sir, I know not their names, Sir."

"Where are my kids?"

The crowd of minions went silent.

"Well!"

A Goomba pushed to the front of the crowd, "Your Nastiness, I saw it with my own eyes; they took the Koopalings! They took them in little white sacks!"

Bowser roared with fury, "Impossible! What forces would take my kids? You…You are all worthless! What did I hire you for? As far as I'm concerned, you can all rot in that cell until I get my kids back!" He turned to leave the dungeons as the servants and guards clamored in their cells.

A pang of pity for the troops and servants of the castle shot through Peach's conscience. After all, her own guards always did the best they could, and yet she managed to get kidnapped time and time again. She could see the cell was cramped and did not appear to have enough space for everyone to sleep. Furthermore, if Bowser left to get his kids, the minions would have nobody to bring them food and they would all starve inside the cell.

"Bowser, you can't! I'm sure they did their best…" Peach started.

"Well it wasn't good enough, was it?"

"Bowser, please reconsider," she asked, with a compassionate gaze. She attempted to find a way to benefit sell the Koopa King; obviously the only way to motivate him was to appeal to his selfish desires. "If you don't let them out, there will be nobody to make our breakfast in the morning."

Bowser paused. He did not want to leave Peach in the castle without proper attendants, especially if undesirables were on the prowl. Though his minions had already proven themselves unworthy, he figured some protection would be better than no protection. "Fine, I'll let them out so they can make your breakfast in the morning; I'm leaving tonight."

Peach's eyes grew wide. He's going to leave me here? Peach did not want to be left alone in the castle with Bowser's minions. If I'm here and he's not, there's a better chance that Mario and Luigi will be able to rescue me, but they don't know where to start looking for me. What if Bowser is right; what if I'm in a place where nobody will think to look for me?

Peach did not know where she was, but if she could somehow communicate to the Mario Brothers that she crashed on a green, grassy island in the west over the sea, perhaps they could find her. The communication lines were down so she would be unable to sneak any messages to the Mushroom Kingdom. If Bowser were going on a quest to find his children, he would have to come across a town at some point. If he were distracted, she could find out where she was and ask a kind villager to send a letter.

"I want to go with you."

Bowser's heart did a small flip before he brought himself back to earth with a reality check. "Oh what, so you can find a way to tell those dumb plumbs where we are? I don't think so, you're not going anywhere."

Darn it, how does he always know? "Please, you can't leave me here with these monsters running loose. Look, everyone here is tired; if an enemy were to attack, we couldn't defend ourselves!"

Bowser grumbled, he did not want to put his Peach in harm's way, but he wanted to get a quick start on finding his children before something bad happened to them. Anyone brazen enough to kidnap his kids... Fatigue weighed upon his body. Maybe she's right about starting tomorrow; I can't help my brats if I'm too tired to fight.

"Fine, I'll stay for tonight, but you're still not coming with me."

"But…"

"Don't push your luck, Princess."

In silence, Peach followed Bowser up the stairs as he showed her into her dark bedroom. After he left, Peach removed her damp garments and slipped into warm pajamas. She lit a candle and sneaked around the castle preparing a knapsack for tomorrow's journey. She would go whether he wanted her to or not.

Meanwhile, Bowser tossed in restless anxiety. Who the hell would kidnap my kids…and why?