LeFlay's Last Stand
Disclaimers: Everything belongs to LucasArts/Telltale Games, I'm just playing with 'em.
Notes: I've loved the Monkey Island series since I was first introduced to it by an older cousin in 1991, but this is the first fanfic I've ever written for it. (well, as long as you don't count terrible pre-teen crossover fanfiction, which I don't) All things considered, it turned out pretty grim! Initially I didn't like Morgan very much, I'd been hoping the mystery swordswoman would be Carla and even though I was expecting to be disappointed, I was still disappointed when it turned out to be Morgan. But the kid grew on me, and I was pretty shocked by her death in the fourth episode, not least because it was such a change of pace and tone for a Monkey Island game. Poor Morgan, murdered on the floor of the Marquis DeSinge's lab by the girly Frenchman himself... or was she? And why did LeChuck decide to kill her anyway? And did she go down without a fight? (actually in the earlier versions of this story then yes, yes she did. That got changed pretty quickly) Well, here is my take on the events that happened between the cutscene in The Trial and Execution of Guybrush Threepwood where Elaine is given the voodoo summons, and the cutscene where Guybrush finds Morgan in DeSinge's lab. All insults used/paraphrased are taken from The Secret of Monkey Island and Curse of Monkey Island.
Spoilers: Big spoilers for Tales of Monkey Island: The Trial and Execution of Guybrush Threepwood.
Breaking into DeSinge's lab had been easier than Morgan had thought, mainly because the mad scientist was nowhere to be seen. Possibly he'd gone to the courthouse to try and get his hands on Elaine, Morgan had to admit that prospect wasn't without its merits. Dispelling that distracting thought with an irritated grunt, Morgan got back to the matter at hand - finding a hand. Maybe she'd just had one too many volcano shots, but Guybrush's parting words to her in Club 41 had cut her deeply. She'd already been feeling guilty, a new and unusual sensation for the pirate hunter, but as she'd watched him walk out she'd even felt a little ashamed of herself.
Well, she had been about to offer to get his hand back, but he'd cut her off in mid-sentence then turned his back on her, and all she'd been able to do was watch as he left to cure his wife and save the island. And he'd do it too, after all she'd already known of him and all she'd seen of him Morgan knew that he'd either succeed or die trying. And she did have to admit that yes, his way really did work, so maybe he did have a hope in hell of pulling it off.
After he'd left, Morgan had turned back to the bar and ordered another line of volcano shots. She'd told herself that Guybrush could be that way if he wanted, that she was going to catch the next tide out of this godforsaken island and put all this behind her. But after her third shot she'd found herself wondering just how hard it would be to steal Guybrush's hand back from the Marquis anyway. By the fifth she'd decided to hell with it, she wanted to see the look on Guybrush's face when she proved him wrong by giving him his hand back. Not that she was sure what he'd *do* with a severed hand but hey, he was Guybrush Threepwood, he'd think of something. And after she'd downed the final shot it had been clear to her that the Marquis had it coming anyway, he deserved it for wearing that stupid fluffy wig in public.
As she'd left Club 41, the brisk sea breeze had stirred Morgan's common sense, or rather the part of her that was telling her she should just take the money and go. For a moment she had almost reconsidered stealing from her former employer, but then she'd noticed that the flag on top of the courthouse was blowing inwards. It stayed that way for over a minute as Morgan watched it, obviously the Marquis was interfering with the island winds again. So she couldn't leave anyway, and since it was DeSinge who was causing that problem he couldn't really complain if it left her bored enough to break into his house.
So here she was, searching the lab of a mad scientist for a possessed hand that didn't even seem to be there. Morgan had gone through all of the cabinets and the desk, the only place she hadn't tried was behind the door marked 'Arret' which was locked. Of course, it hadn't been the lock that had stopped her, it had been the unpleasant smell that was drifting out from beneath the door, like the stink of decomposing flesh. Though that might make sense, if the Marquis was keeping Guybrush's Pox-possessed hand in there.
Turning to face the door, Morgan froze as a shadow flitted across the open balcony, then landed with a soft thud behind her. Whipping her sword out, Morgan spun to face whatever it was, with an uneasy suspicion that it might be a certain Pox-infected appendage that wasn't going to take kindly to attempted capture. Instead she found herself looking at the Marquis' trained monkey Jacques, who yelped in fear as Morgan's swordpoint stopped barely an inch from his cowering form.
"You shouldn't sneak up on me like that," Morgan said with a chuckle as she put her sword away. "I could have split you in two."
Although the monkey uncovered his head as the pirate hunter's sword returned to her side, he still seemed just as agitated, whooping and chattering at her as he gestured out towards the island with one skinny arm. Morgan's look of amusement slowly turned to concern as she managed to catch a few words here and there, she never had spoken much monkey to begin with and it had been years since she'd learned, but she knew enough to recognise the word 'trouble' when she heard it.
"Guybrush is in trouble?" It was a guess, but obviously not the right one from the way Jacques began to jump on the spot in consternation. "Look, you're going to have to speak clearly, I'm not good with languages." Crouching next to the monkey, Morgan gave him her full attention, her mission to steal back Guybrush's hand now forgotten.
Taking a deep breath, Jacques started again, chattering more slowly this time but still waving his arms like Stan trying to make a sale. Now that she was concentrating on his words, and the effects of the volcano shots were wearing off, Morgan found that it was easier to understand him.
"Okay, there's a lot of monkeys on a boat..." The pirate hunter was interrupted by a squawk from Jacques as he corrected her. "Oh, they *were* on a boat... LeChuck gave them new homes?" Morgan frowned. "Huh, maybe he *has* changed..." Her eyes widened as Jacques started shrieking again at her words, a cold feeling of foreboding running down her spine. "Wait, you mean he hasn't? Then why would he take them to new homes?"
Once again Jacques started from the beginning, starting to lose hope that the human would understand. This time he did his best to use small words, which seemed to work as Morgan didn't try to translate when he was only halfway through. Instead she rocked back on her heels, her eyes wide. Once he'd finished, Jacques waited for a response, wondering if the human would do better if she was rewarded with a banana for every word she got right.
"So LeChuck *took* the monkeys from their homes, put them on a boat and took them to other places..." Morgan began, feeling more confident in her translation as Jacques nodded excitedly instead of interrupting her. "But he hog-tied them before he let them go? That's not very..." She stopped in mid-sentence as Jacques whooped at her angrily. "Oh, he *hypnotised* them before he let them go, is that right?"
From the way Jacques leapt on the spot clapping his hands together, Morgan guessed that she'd got it right. "Okay, so, *why* does he need a bunch of hypnotised monkeys?"
Jacques had only just started to chatter another explanation when he suddenly fell silent, the monkey's eyes widening as he looked not at Morgan, but behind her. Perhaps Guybrush might have wasted time asking the monkey what was wrong, but Morgan trusted to her instincts instead, and in one smooth movement she was back on her feet with her sword out, facing the man who'd just entered the laboratory.
Morgan had been expecting the Marquis, instead she found herself confronted by a huge pirate who almost filled the doorway he was standing in. She recognised him immediately, even though she'd only caught a glimpse of him when he'd arrived on the island earlier. LeChuck.
The former demon pirate didn't seen at all alarmed by the sword she'd levelled at him, he simply stood there with his arms at his sides and a disarming smile spread across his open, friendly features. "Do ye often listen t' the chatterin' of monkeys Miss LeFlay?" LeChuck's voice was casual, his eyes twinkling with amusement, and Morgan found herself wanting to trust him. Already trusting him.
The pirate hunter's eyes narrowed as that thought sunk in. She was Morgan LeFlay, feared privateer, and she didn't trust anybody! Well, with the exception of Guybrush, who it was hard not to trust. Bringing her swordpoint back up with a sudden jerk, she realised that she hadn't even noticed it dropping.
"Only when the monkeys have something interesting to say." As she fought the urge to trust the pirate, it suddenly seemed to fade away, as if by resisting it she'd somehow broken it. At the same time, LeChuck's eyes narrowed, as if he'd felt it break too.
"Leave, girl." The pirate's voice had lost its smoothness, his expression now suggesting the faintest hint of a snarl. "This isn't concernin' ye and iffen ye want t' live ye'll leave this island without delay."
"That's a bit hard with all the winds blowing inwards." Morgan retorted, shifting slightly to keep her muscles loose for the fight that she knew was inevitable. "And if it doesn't concern me, I bet it concerns Guybrush."
LeChuck raised both eyebrows at her words, the smile back on his face but decidedly more unpleasant now. "Oh my. Now this *is* intriguin' lass." The pirate leered at her as he continued and Morgan's grip on her sword tightened. "Could it be that yer holdin' a torch for that sorry whelp then?"
"Of course not!" Morgan spat back at him, too quickly and too ferociously. Throwing back his head, LeChuck roared with laughter that set Morgan's teeth on edge.
"Oh, this is just *too* good!" LeChuck managed to gasp out between his chuckles. "The mighty pirate hunter, fallin' for the so-called 'mighty pirate'! It's like one of those terrible plays they put on over on Plunder Island! And of course..." Lowering his head, LeChuck looked Morgan squarely in the eye. "...he'll never care a fig for ye. Not when he's got Elaine. Is that why ye double-crossed him, aye?"
With an inarticulate shriek that put Jacques to shame, Morgan lunged at the smirking pirate, intending to wipe the smile off his face by slashing his head from his shoulders. But LeChuck was much faster than she'd given him credit for, and instead her blade clashed against the cutlass that she hadn't even seen him draw. The blade of the weapon looked strange, engraved with an odd scrolling design and as it struck her own weapon Morgan could have sworn that she saw it spark.
"Touched a nerve, did I?" LeChuck asked with false, syrupy innocence. Forcing Morgan's sword back with sheer strength, the pirate tried to punch her with his free hand. Ducking under the blow, Morgan rolled backwards then sprang up to counter the swipe of LeChuck's cutlass, the two of them exchanging a flurry of furious blows.
It was almost like her fight with Elaine, but instead of snarling and cursing her, LeChuck was still smiling. There was nothing friendly about it now, only the arrogant confidence of someone who had no doubt that they would win. And Morgan had no doubt that LeChuck would have no more qualms about killing her than the Pox-enraged Elaine had done. He was faster than she'd imagined he would be and the strength behind his blows was staggering, but he still wasn't as fast as the pirate hunter and certainly not as agile. LeChuck's strategy seemed simple, he was trying to wear her down with his superior strength, but that wouldn't help him if he couldn't close with her.
Keeping on her toes, Morgan dodged the pirate's blows rather than counter them, jabbing at him with her own blade whenever she got an opening. Sliding under an overhead chop, Morgan spun to the side and thrust at LeChuck's unguarded flank. The pirate tried to twist away but wasn't fast enough to avoid the blow entirely and growled as Morgan's blade nicked him. Jumping up onto DeSinge's desk to gain the advantage of height, Morgan grinned at her scowling opponent.
"Soon you'll be wearing my sword like a shish-kebab!"
"Aye, but first ye better stop wavin' it like a feather duster!" LeChuck made a chop at the privateer's legs, scattering and shattering glass jars and vials as she leapt over his blade then swiped at his head, taking a chunk out of the feather in his hat. Their blades clashed again in another series of blows, then as LeChuck took another swing at her legs Morgan flipped herself backwards to land expertly on top of the picture projector that Jacques had once operated. She heard it whirr into life beneath her, casting a flickering light across the wall behind her, and guessed that she'd stepped on the controls.
With the desk now between them LeChuck could no longer try to cut her legs from under her without giving her an opportunity to get a blow in first, but it also meant that the only part of him she could reach was his head. She took a few swipes at him anyway to keep him on his toes, but they were easily parried.
Smacking Morgan's blade to the side for the third time, LeChuck glowered up at her. "There are no clever moves that can help you now!" Morgan's eyes widened at his words, scandalised.
"Hey! Nobody gets to use the Swordmaster's insults, not even someone as ugly as you!" As LeChuck lunged at her, Morgan launched herself over his head to catch hold of the strange device hanging from the ceiling, knocking the projector onto its side as she did.
Before LeChuck could take another swing at her, Morgan swung herself over to land on the small counter in the corner, knocking several racks of vials over in the process. Her best chance of success lay with keeping the pirate moving, he might be bigger and heavier than her but it meant that he would tire faster. As he lunged at her, the privateer somersaulted over his head, hearing his sword crunch down on a microscope that had been left on the counter. "I have never seen such clumsy swordplay!" Morgan taunted him as she rolled to her feet.
LeChuck was actually snarling now, his face demonic even if his form wasn't. "Ye would have, but ye were always runnin' away!" He charged across the room at her, with an over the shoulder slash that would have cut her in half if it had connected. Instead it smashed the Marquis' electricity-generating device as Morgan slid deftly to the floor and under the blow, turning so that her back was to the balcony. If she couldn't beat LeChuck, she could at least escape through the open window if things got out of hand.
Wrenching his cutlass from the wreckage, LeChuck spun to face the privateer once more, his eyes glittering as he gave her a feral grin. "I've heard you were a contemptible sneak!"
It was an old insult, and Morgan knew the response, but for a moment all she could see was Guybrush's cold blue eyes as he glared at her over his bound wrists with such hurt and betrayal that Morgan had almost given in and taken him back to the Narwhal.
"Do you get health-care for the repetitive stress injuries caused by all the back-stabbing and cutting off people's hands?"
She'd only faltered for an instant, but an instant was all LeChuck needed. The tip of his cutlass caught Morgan's sword below the handguard and deftly flicked it out of her grasp and into his free hand. But standing there stupidly after being disarmed was a pirate thing, and Morgan was a pirate-hunter. Instead she sprang at LeChuck, intending to wrestle her weapon out of his grasp, but before she reached him he had brought his cutlass round in a wide swing to club her across the head with the pommel. The blow sent her flying back to land on the steps leading to the balcony, her head spinning from the force of the hit. And as her vision cleared she saw something silver flash towards her, then felt a lance of white-hot pain sear through her midriff, her sight blurring once more.
"Well, at least it looks like *someone* is wearin' yer sword like a shish-kebab." LeChuck chortled from somewhere high above Morgan. "So ye were half right, lass."
As she heard the pirate's scornful voice, Morgan tried to get back to her feet, only to discover that her legs wouldn't respond. Raising her head slowly, feeling dizzier than she would have done after two dozen volcano shots, Morgan's breath caught in her throat as she saw the hilt of her sword jutting up in front of her eyes. Her gaze slid down to the blade, past the engraved name of her tutor, following the gleaming metal until it disappeared into her body just above her navel. It had skewered her as neatly as the pins had skewered the moths on the wall.
Shaking her head slightly in stunned disbelief, Morgan's mouth opened and closed convulsively. "...no..." She'd never really given much thought to how she'd die, confident in her skills, but even if she had, she doubted that she would ever have considered being run through with the sword she'd learned to fight with.
Leaning down so that she could focus on him, LeChuck smiled wolfishly at her. "Aye. Thanks for lendin' me yer sword." He waggled his own cutlass at her mockingly. "I'm keepin' this one for Threepwood." Straightening up, the pirate looked around the wrecked laboratory. "I suppose that foppish scientist will be wantin' a refund now. Ye best take that up with him when he gets here." Swaggering over to the doorway, he glanced back over his shoulder towards the dying privateer. "My wisest enemies run away at the first sight of me." Morgan gave no sign that she had heard the insult, her gaze still fixed on her sword, and with a shrug LeChuck headed down the stairs and out of the building. There was still a lot to be accomplished, and limited time to do it in.
Morgan didn't even notice him leave, reaching out shakily with one hand to touch the blade of her sword, her fingertip tracing across the letters spelling Dante Dragotta. She wondered idly what her old mentor would have said if he could have seen her now. He'd probably lecture her on her footwork again. Not that footwork would have helped her.
"...s... stupid of me..." Morgan muttered to herself, the words catching in her throat as if they were sticky. "...insult swordf... swordfighting's f' p... pirates..." Closing both hands around the blade of the sword just below the hilt, Morgan tried to tug at it. It didn't move, buried too deeply in the floor beneath her, but she groaned as the movement shot hot needles of agony through her upper body. "...stupid..."
She wasn't sure how long she lay there for, feeling warmth spreading beneath her as her blood pooled across the floor. Below her waist she could feel nothing, as if her legs weren't even there. Morgan wondered if that was how Guybrush had felt when she'd cut off his hand, only of course that had actually been gone, while her legs were very much still there just... not working. Guybrush. For a fleeting moment she felt a hot rush of fury at the thought of him, it was his fault she was lying here, pinned by her own sword, it was his stupid guilt trip that had made her come up here in the first place! But... but she'd started it hadn't she? And now she'd never be able to make it up to him.
Morgan was abruptly snapped out of her increasingly hazy cogitations by a scream that was even more girlish than one made by Guybrush. Raising her head, she saw the Marquis DeSinge standing in the doorway, taking in the wreckage of his laboratory in horror.
"Non, non! Mon equipment! Mon devices! Mon..." His voice tailed off as he stepped further into the room and noticed Morgan. He stared at her in disbelief for several seconds, then his gaze moved to the sword impaling her, then further down to the blood spreading across the floor. His second scream hit an even higher pitch than the first, and without another word the scientist bolted from the room. Morgan dimly heard the door slam below, and managed a pained chuckle as her head slumped back to her chest..
"...even prissier than... than I thought. Heh." She heard a scuffling behind her, but didn't try to look up, for one thing she wasn't sure if she had the strength. For another... well, how bad could it be compared to her current situation? Whatever it was, she didn't really care any more.
As it turned out, it was Jacques. The monkey bounded from the balcony to crouch over her, looking from the sword through her stomach to her face and back again, with a sound that sounded almost like a sigh.
"...if that means 'm screwed... yeah, I 'gree." Morgan muttered, feeling a shudder run through her upper body. It was growing harder for her to keep her eyes open, and she wasn't sure why she was even trying to stay conscious. Well, now that she thought about it, she *did* know, but she knew it was useless, by now he...
"Morgan!" At first the privateer thought she'd imagined Guybrush's voice, but then he was kneeling beside her. "What happened?"
With an effort, Morgan raised her head to look at him. His blue eyes were wide and horrified, now there was no trace of the resentment and bitterness she had seen in them earlier. She opened her mouth to speak, but instead she coughed as blood ran into her mouth. Gasping for breath, she managed to force the words out. "Went to get your hand..." She wanted to say more, to tell him about LeChuck, but her voice was cut off by another racking cough.
"You didn't have to do that!" Although Guybrush sounded shocked, Morgan could hear the sincerity in his voice. He meant that. He would have forgiven her anyway.
"Had to pay you back for all the trouble." Morgan replied with a faint smile which vanished as she remembered LeChuck. "Found Jacques... he told me..." Her voice faded as her vision blurred once again, feeling another shudder run through her body.
"What?" Morgan could barely hear Guybrush's voice, but tried her hardest to focus on it, refusing to die until she'd warned him.
"He told me..." Again Morgan found that she couldn't finish the sentence, losing track of her words as her gaze fell back to the sword jutting out of her body.
"What? What did the monkey tell you?" Guybrush had leaned closer to her and with all the strength she could muster, Morgan managed to push herself up, grimacing as the movement shifted the blade within her body, sending jagged bolts of agony searing through her. But the pain cleared her head, even as she tasted blood bubbling in the back of her throat. Raising one hand she tried to grasp his jaw to pull him towards her. Realising what she wanted, Guybrush leaned closer.
Closing her eyes in concentration, Morgan managed to choke out a final, agonised sentence. "...don' truss L'chk... hyp... notised buncha monkeys... ran me through... ownblade..." Her head fell back as she finished, her eyelids flickering as she looked at him, then everything went black.
It stayed that way for quite some time.