Hello everybody! How long have you been waiting for me? A month? Well, don't worry, I'm back.

Anyway, I have an important announcement for all of my readers. From now on, 'Finn and Jake's Magnificent Adventure!' will be uploaded at LandofOoo dot com a day earlier than Fanfiction dot net. The link is in my profile. Over there, you can participate in topics about the story, I will personally answer any questions you have about the story, and even get some insight for future chapters. The forum itself is fun, too. You can participate in roleplays, talk about episodes, even watch episodes of Adventure Time for free! Join the forums!

Don't forget to review my story here. Review whether or not you have an account, here or at the website.

Be on the lookout for that snail, man!

Disclaimer: I want to own Adventure time, but then it'll suck. Which is why it doesn't belong to me.

Chapter 5 summary: Finn and Jake discover the Sole Mines, as well as a poverty cursed kingdom. But when they get too close to discovering a secret, things turn into a life and death situation for our heroes.

Deep within the Sole Mines

"We've been walking for hours," Finn complained, "I haven't seen any Shoe Kingdom yet."

"Of course we haven't," Jake retorted, "Ooo isn't a small island or something. It's a huge country."

"I didn't think it'd be super huge. We went to many cool places before and they weren't so far apart."

"They were. You would ride on me for us to get there and it's quicker on my back."

Finn groaned.

"By the way, why won't you let me ride on your back? It'd be faster that way."

"I already told you. My arms and legs are tired from removing the duck tape off of those bombs back on the train. I can't carry you."

"Why can't you just turn big?"

"Because then my arms and legs would get sore from carrying my weight and yours."

Finn sighed hard. He hated not riding Jake for such a long time, not because he missed the smooth feel of wind against his face, but because of what time they were losing by not moving as fast as they can. Using Jake's powers, they could easily travel Ooo at their maximum pace and make it to the Dancing Kingdom in record time, but at the moment, Jake's limbs were still sore from the fiasco back on the Forever Train. It was of top priority that Finn and Jake make it to the Dancing Kingdom in less than a month, and if Ooo is as huge as Jake says it is, it was all the more important that they make it to the Dancing Kingdom before Bubblegum's birthday.

The sun was drifting off listlessly under the horizon, casting a last wave of sunlight on the pale land before it. Crows and birds cawed at the arrival of dusk as it was getting darker by the minute. Jake began to get concerned about traveling during the night, especially since the two were so tired. Seeing a random boulder and tree in the distance, Jake decided now was a good time to set up camp and rest.

"Hey Finn, let's rest," Jake said, pulling his bag off his back.

"What? No! We can't rest now!" Finn said, "We have to get to the Dancing Kingdom before the end of the month!"

"Finn, I'm tired and so are you. We should rest so that we can be prepared for anything tomorrow."

"I'm not tired. And if you want to sleep, fine. I'll carry you if I have to."

"Shut up, man. You're talking nonsense," Jake said before he quickly headed over to the rock and tree spot, setting his bag down on the ground.

"I mean it, Jake," Finn said, "I'm not tired at-"

Without warning, Jake extended his arms towards Finn and made a loud clap with his hands. Finn flinched and shut his eyes, for about three seconds.

"Heh, two for flinching," Jake said.

"That doesn't count, you weren't close to me!" Finn said before his eyes fell back closed again.

Finn's eyes burned whenever he closed his eyes, but whenever he tried to open them, his eyes would just close themselves again. A deep breath welled up in his chest before Finn let loose a deep yawn. Finn hated to admit it, but Jake was right. He was really tired. Sleep had managed to penetrate his insomnia through a weak spot and was begging him to rest his body. Finn tried to ignore the faintness in his muscles and tried to push the thought of sleep out of his head, but the moment he saw his sleeping bag being set up by Jake, he had given in to the desire and walked towards his bag.

"Maybe I will get some sleep…" Finn admitted.

"Good boy, Finn. Sleep is very important for a young man like you," Jake said as he pulled out his own little doggy bed.

"Hey, I'm not that young. I'm thirteen," Finn remarked, taking off his backpack and setting it and his suitcase aside so that he could enter his sleeping bag.

"Still quite young," Jake said, sitting down in his dog bed while letting off a yawn.

Finn watched his dog get cozy in his bed as the sunlight finally abandoned the land, letting darkness blanket over the country.

"Hey Jake?" Finn asked.

"Yeah?"

"We haven't camped out like this since forever, you know?"

"Yeah, it's been a while," Jake said.

"I remember the campfires, the marshmallows, the ghost stories, messing with Megasquatch," Finn said, listing the best memories of ever camping out in the wilderness.

"Don't forget our stuff getting stolen by evil raccoon zombie residents," Jake pointed out.

"Yeah…oh, that reminds me."

Finn reached for his suitcase and opened it, reaching for a bottle inside. It was a grey potion with the words 'Watcher' on its sticker. Undoing the cap, Finn leaned the potion above the ground near him and let fall a little drop. As soon as the potion hit the earth, a figure quickly erupted from the ground, taking the form of a scarecrow on a stick. The scarecrow was pretty basic with a raggedy shirt, dirty pats, and straw hat, but it had a pumpkin head with a very creepy face carved into it. Not only that, it had two soulless eyes on its head that would stare at anyone looking directly at it, thanks to the optical illusion of the carving.

Capping the potion and putting it back in his suitcase, Finn put aside his stuff and tucked himself in his sleeping bag, now comfortable knowing that a watchful eye would keep thieves and monsters away with its creepy stare and horrific eyes.

"Good idea, Finn," Jake said.

"I came prepared, you know."

"So you did," Jake yawned, "Goodnight."

"Night."

Finn lied back on his head, staring out at the stars and planets above him. He wondered about all kinds of stuff that happens in space and the wonders of space travel. Space had always fascinated Finn, since it was such a foreign place to him and full of unknown wonders and adventures. He wasn't ever concerned with the technical stuff, all he cared about was the thrill of the adventure. He never stared out into the night sky very often, mostly because he slept under a roof or he was too busy adventuring to notice. But whenever he did, he would envision himself riding on space comets, slaying space gnomes and defeating space pirates and stealing their space treasure. Oh the mysteries of space.

"I bet Princess Bubblegum knows a lot about space," Finn said to himself, yawning.

Finn shook his head. He didn't want to think about the dear princess not because he still held a grudge, but because the very thought of her would lead back to the heartbreak a day ago, and he wanted to avoid those depressing thoughts. Finn closed his eyes hoping to sleep quickly to shut down those thoughts, and sleep he did as his mind drifted off into a different plane of reality.

He opened his eyes and found himself standing on a red, barren planet. The sky was absent of a cloud or the normal blue veil of light but was naked, showing the stars and planets that were in the scope of the planets face. Finn looked around the empty scenery, wondering where he was, as he saw nothing but craters and hills across the planet's hemisphere.

"What the heck is this place?" he asked himself.

Finn, finding nothing in front of him, decided to look behind himself only to find a large white building a stone's throw away from his position. It had many pillars holding the roof and a strange red, white, and blue flag waving atop the house.

"Wow, it's like a big, white house," Finn commented.

He noticed that the front door was open, waving listlessly open and closed, and figured he might as well take a look inside. Stepping onto the concrete steps, it only occurred to Finn just how big the building was. It had a sense of leadership and freedom in its air, with a welcoming feel to the honest and righteous. Finn casually opened the door like he would any other abandoned house and his first impression of the interior was how clean and tidy the inside was, despite being empty and silent. He could feel the lush carpet under him squish as his foot pressed against it, no wheeze of dust or dirt nor a speck of filth under the soft carpet. Finn was simply astounded by how clean everything was, and he had only seen the lobby of the building.

Stepping towards a desk, he looked around and noticed the same red, white, and blue pattern design everywhere inside, usually with a picture of an eagle. He looked behind the desk only to see an empty chair and a computer monitor that was off. Though the building was well lit and clean, it was clearly abandoned.

"Hello?" Finn asked as his voice echoed through the halls.

Receiving no response, Finn decided to explore the mysterious building by checking doors and looking through cabinets. He was disappointed to find that all of the doors were locked and that the cabinets were empty, but he continued his exploration by walking down a hallway. Doorknob after doorknob, Finn would feel resistance and move on to the next door, walking further and further down the halls. After a few turns in the hallway and more locked doors, Finn found a short hallway with only one door at the end and it had the picture of a bird with a white head, a shield with stars and stripes, and the words 'Liberty and Justice for All' on a sash wrapped around the picture.

Finn hesitated to grab the doorknob, anticipating it might just be another locked door. With a firm grip on the doorknob, he slowly gave it a little twist. No resistance. He twisted further. Still, no resistance. Finn's interest piqued as he had found an unlocked door, twisting the knob all the way and letting the door slide open. To his amazement, the door led to a large circular room, with two couches opposite of each other, a fancy coffee table in between, a grand important looking desk situated before some windows, and a luxurious leather chair behind that desk, only, the chair was facing the windows. A large rug lay under the furniture, bearing the same symbol of the bird and the shield on the door leading to this room. Next to the desk was a sizable flag with a red, white, and blue pattern and a figure of an eagle atop the pole. The windows were garnished with fancy blue and white curtains with a short red and white stripes patterned drapery above the window.

"Holy stuff," Finn uttered, taking in the amazing décor of the room.

He walked on into the room as he continued to absorb the royal feel of the room. Little did he know that he wasn't the only person in the room.

"I take it you are impressed?" a rough voice spoke out, taking Finn by surprise.

"Who said that?" Finn asked, looking at the chair, where the voice came from.

The chair turned around revealing an old man in a brown suit and a bowtie. He looked to be somewhere in his fifties and had a rough beard. He stood up from the chair and held his hand out toward Finn.

"My name is Abraham Lincoln," he said.

"Oh, uh," Finn hesitated to reach for his hand because the man emitted a strong sense of presence that Finn had not felt before, but eventually their hands met "I'm Finn."

"I know," Abe said, releasing his grip.

Finn looked at his hand, Abraham's hand felt rough and wrinkly, as if he had held an axe before.

"So, where is this place?" he asked.

"You're in the Dream Plane," Abe said, "You've been here before many times during your life."

"I have?"

"Yes, only that this is the first time we met."

"Wait, if this is the first time we met, how did you know my name?" Finn asked.

"I'll be honest, I don't know," he answered, "but it's as if I've known you for years and your name came up when I looked at you."

"Huh, weird…" Finn said as he looked around the room again, "So… is all of this in my head?"

"Well, yes and no."

"What do you mean?" the human boy said, turning back to Lincoln.

"This building used to exist a long time ago, in a far away country," Abe said, turning around to face the window, "the world has changed heavily since then."

"So, why is it in my dream?" Finn asked.

"It may be because I'm here, since I used to live in this house a long time ago," he answered, looking out the window into the void of space.

"Wait, if this house used to be real, does that mean…?"

"That's enough questions Finn," Abraham interrupted, turning back to face the boy, "I have something very important to tell you."

"Huh?"

"Finn, you are going to fight a great evil soon, a fight you are not ready for," Lincoln said as he seated himself back in his chair.

"What do you mean I'm not ready?" Finn question, skeptical, "I'm a kick butt hero."

"When I say 'great evil' I mean a 'top of the shelf evil'. This is a villain that is even stronger than the vampire queen."

"You mean…Marceline?" Finn said.

"Yes. This is a villain that could easily dispatch a legendary hero like Billy."

Finn gulped. By comparison, he knew that Marceline was a very strong fighter from experience and he had heard of the tales of Billy. Knowing that he would eventually have to fight a villain stronger than the vampire queen and could easily slay a hero like Billy, Finn felt his confidence dwindle just thinking about this potential threat.

The waning confidence passed, however, as Finn reassured himself with his naivety.

"Oh yeah? Well, bring it on Abe!" Finn said, doing a back flip and posing, pointing both fingers at him, "I can handle any evil out there and defeat any villain that stands for injustice and vileness."

"You have confidence," Lincoln said, folding his hands together, "That is admirable, but if you do not prepare yourself before the fight, you will be dead before you draw your sword."

"Pfft, I don't need any training," Finn said, drawing his sword and holding it up, "I can kick butt and save the day. That's the hero way."

"Even hero's needed training before slaying great evils," Abe said.

"Yeah, that's true," Finn sheathed his sword as he said this, "so, what's this training I need?"

Abraham reached down for a drawer and opened it. He withdrew several pieces of paper and a pen and held up one of them. Finn took interest and walked closer to see if he can take a peek.

"Fate is a funny thing," Abe said as he clicked his pen, "it isn't a coincidence you are on an adventure to the Dancing Kingdom."

"It isn't?"

"No. This adventure will test the various aspects of heroism you uphold and if you are worthy of upholding the ways of the hero. You will come across various intermissions that will test you on a heroic attribute, such as courage, justice, valor, and such. If you have passed all of these tests, your adventure will be over, and you will do battle with a great evil, pitting all that you have learned in the adventure as your strength to use against this villain."

"Wow…" Finn uttered, leaning on his desk, "…so, what is the name of this evil?"

"I'm afraid I do not know," Abe answered.

"…but you know all this junk about my destiny and such. How can you not know who my opponent will be?" Finn said, putting his hands on the president's desk.

"I simply don't know, Finn," he said as he wrote something on the paper, "if I did know, I'd tell you."

"Or, maybe, you're just lying," Finn said, snatching the paper out of the old man's hand.

Finn was surprised to see that the paper was just a crossword puzzle, with some words crossed out such as courage, and valor. He was expecting some mystical paper or a script Abe had rehearsed before. The old president kindly retrieved the paper from Finn's grip.

"No, Finn, I never lie," he said.

"Err, sorry about that, Abe," Finn said while he rubbed his left arm.

"Apology accepted. Now, Finn, there are other things I should tell you about," Lincoln said as he set down the paper and pen.

"Uh, but, can I ask you some questions first?" Finn asked.

"Like?"

"Well, are you…you know…" Finn looked down at the floor, holding up his hands and tapping his fingertips against each other, "human?"

"Yes. So?"

Finn gasped. He had never met another human before, frankly, because he thought he was the last one left. But before his very being stood, or sat, another human like him, even if it was all just a dream.

But wait.

If all of this was just a dream, how was he sure Abe was really a human? He had met so many other ambiguously human beings that whenever he met someone humanlike he'd pass them off as a variation of them. He wasn't going to be disappointed again.

"Are you sure you're human and I'm not just imagining all of this?" Finn asked, demonstrating he skepticism by waving his hands above him as he spoke.

"Finn, I assure you that I would never lie," Abe said, "That's why they called me Honest Abe."

"Then what happened to all of the humans?" he asked.

"Again, I don't know," the president said, looking down and closing his eyes.

"If you really were human, you'd know what happened to them," Finn said as he crossed his arms.

"Finn, I was assassinated long before the end of the world. How should I know what happened to the planet?"

An odd silence cursed the room as Finn processed his words.

"Uhh, good point."

"Now Finn, this won't be the last time we'll meet," Lincoln said as he picked up the paper and pen again, "but you must understand that when we do meet again, there will be some things I know and don't know. I would honestly tell you the name of your true opponent, I would, but something is repressing my memory to prevent me from telling you."

"Aww, I would've liked knowing that stuff," Finn said, disappointed.

"I feel that this repression is connected to your adventure, as in, to contribute to your development. It is better for you to figure out this stuff on your own rather than me telling you everything."

"Well, I guess so… I mean, as long as it helps me become a better hero and stuff, I'm not complaining," Finn said.

"Excellent, you understand. That was easier than I thought," Abe said before he drew a line on his puzzle, "Now, it is almost morning in the Awake Plane. You are going to wake up soon."

"Huh?"

Abraham was right. The room was getting darker and more transparent as Finn felt himself slowly fade away from the dream.

"No! Wait! I have more questions!" Finn said out loud as he tried to run towards Abe, but found himself being pulled back by some unknown force.

The pull was too great and flung Finn backwards as the room was quickly dimming to total darkness, blanketing Abraham and absorbing Finn. Finn expected to hit a wall or something hard, but he felt himself continuously flying deep into the darkness. His eyes began to close and they felt heavier the further he flew. Eventually, Finn shut his eyes and allowed himself to be swallowed by the shadows, shunning all noise and leaving the dream.

The last words he heard were, 'Heed my words, Finn. This will be your greatest adventure yet!'

Dawn of Day 2 - 30 Days Remaining

Finn opened his eyes, catching the night sky before the sun would rise. He felt like he had been absolved of fatigue, no longer feeling tired or sleepy. He rose out of his sleeping bag and reviewed his dream, thinking about what it had meant. Sitting upright, he instinctively spread his arms and stretched, letting escape a small yawn, and looked over at Jake, who was still sleeping in his doggy bed. Finn looked down and recollected the dream. He remembered the strange space setting, the big, white house, and that man who called himself Abraham Lincoln, or Abe for short. But what disturbed him most was what all of it meant, and how different the dream was from other dreams he had. They were usually weird and Finn would forget most of them, but this one he remembered every tidbit and detail of the encounter, right down to the color of Abe's bowtie.

"Test of heroism?" Finn said silently.

Finn shook his head. He was dealing with enough problems such as Bubblegum's wedding; he didn't need to be bothered by a test now. And besides, he wasn't going to get anywhere just by wondering about it. The faster this whole adventure is settled, the better.

Finn got out of his sleeping bag and walked over to wake up Jake.

"Hey Jake, it's morning. Time to get up," he said as he shook the dog.

"…Mmm, gimme some peanut butter…" Jake mumbled in his sleep.

Finn chuckled. He liked hearing Jake sleep talk, even if what he says is disturbing. However, Finn wanted to get to the Dancing Kingdom as quickly as he could, so he couldn't allow Jake to sleep in. Finn gave Jake a quick smack in the jowls, causing him to snort and awaken.

"Ow! Finn, I thought I told you not to wake me up like that," Jake complained, one paw over his muzzle.

"Sorry, Jake," Finn shrugged his shoulders, "But we can't waste any time on our adventure to the Dancing Kingdom, so no sleeping in."

Jake reeled over to his side, "Can it wait for another five minutes? I'm not used to waking up early."

"Fine," Finn said, Jake can be stubborn when he wanted to, "I'll be packing up everything here, and when I'm done, you better be up and about."

"Fair enough," Jake said, pulling his blanket over him while Finn went to fold his sleeping bag.

First, he unzipped the bag and held it by the corners so that he could whip it in the air, to get rid of any dirt or other debris that crept into the bag the previous night. After a few good cracks, he folded the bag corner by corner while keeping it from touching the ground, so that it wouldn't get dirty again. With the bag now a neat square, he opened his suitcase he had set aside last night and placed it in its designated spot besides the potions.

Looking at the potions, Finn remembered the scarecrow he had set up the previous night. He closed the suitcase and turned to the inanimate object to his right. The scarecrow had not moved or changed since it had been summoned, and none of their stuff had been stolen or tampered with. With its job done, Finn tugged at a string tying its 'feet' to the wooden pole. With the knot undone, the legs fell loose and Finn stood up and congratulated the doll for a job well done.

"Good work, scarecrow guy. You're free to eat all of the birds you can find," Finn said.

Suddenly, as if by magic, the scarecrow began lifting up into the sky. Its feet and legs moved as if it was trying to swim. Free from the binds of the rope, if flew off in an unknown direction, towards a flock of birds passing by. As Finn turned to Jake, the sound of many birds perishing echoed.

"Ok Jake, all done. You up yet?" he asked.

Jake yawned in response.

"Yeah, I guess so. Just warming myself up for the day," Jake said, getting up from his dog bed.

Jake reached for his bag, which he had set on a nearby tree, and opened it, stuffing his doggy bed inside. Slipping his arms into the knots, he set it on his back, ready for adventure.

"You ready for adventure, Finn?" Jake said as he grew in size.

"You bet!" Finn said excitedly, jumping onto his friends back.

"Then off to the Dancing Kingdom we go!" Jake yelled.

"Yeah, man! It's Adventure Time!" Finn shouted.

And so, the boy and dog resumed their adventure towards the Dancing Kingdom as the sun rose above the horizons. With Jake having grown several times in size, they could easily reach their destination in a matter of minutes. This adventure was going to be a piece of cake.

A few hours later…

"…some adventure this is," Finn mumbled, slouching on Jake's back.

For the past few hours, all they had been doing was walking. Just that. Walking. The scenery around them did change such as the grass turning greener and more trees as they walked, but nothing exciting had happened. According to Jake, their next destination was the Shoe kingdom. At least, it was suppose to be the Shoe Kingdom.

"Jake, we've been walking for hours and no sign of any Shoe Kingdom!" Finn complained.

"Finn, when I said Ooo was a big country," Jake said, without a hint of irritancy, "I meant a BIG country. We aren't going to reach the Shoe Kingdom lickety-split."

"I'd like to think we would've been there by now," Finn continued to complain, "Can't you go any faster?"

"Oh, I'm sorry Finn. Can you turn into a giant and stretch abnormally?" Jake mockingly questioned.

"I'm just saying, you can turn bigger and walk faster than this," he said as he sat up on the dogs back.

"It's called 'preserving energy'. Growing that size and running that fast uses up much of my metabolism," Jake explained.

"Uhh, in English?"

"I'll get hungry faster, and we didn't pack much food."

Finn groaned, "Well, what am I suppose to do while you're taking us there?"

"Well, we should use this time to consider our priorities," Jake said.

"Priorities?" Finn said.

"Yeah. It's a basic lesson of adventuring."

Finn took a moment to look back into his memory. He learned all about adventuring from Jake, but he couldn't seem to recall any lesson about priorities.

"Jake, you taught me all about adventuring, but you never mentioned 'priorities'," Finn pointed out.

"Huh, I didn't?" Jake asked. Jake scrunched his forehead in thought, trying to recall the lessons he taught Finn. He vaguely remembered reading the subject in a book, but he skipped to a different chapter because the lesson was irrelevant. "Oh yeah. I remember now. The lesson involved long term adventuring, and since I didn't think we'd be adventuring so far away from home, I skipped that one."

"Well, now's a good time as ever to start the lesson. I have to learn these things if I want to be a great adventurer," Finn said, laying on his stomach and ready for Jake to talk.

"Well, from what I remember," Jake said, "there are three important things for adventurers when they are on a long journey; food, water, and rest."

"Uh huh," Finn uttered.

"It isn't uncommon for adventurers to travel light since most of the time, there are villages on the way to their destination that provide all three. But in such a case, money is important since even heroes have to pay for these services."

"Oh, yeah. I did pack some gold," Finn remembered, "…too bad most of it was wasted on the train ride…"

"Yeah, that sucks," Jake said, "We're not gonna get far with just four gold pieces and six dollops."

"Don't worry, we'll just eat what nature provides us," Finn reassured.

"That's a great way of thinking, Finn," Jake said, turning his head to see Finn in the corner of his eye, "That also happens to be one of the lessons."

Finn smiled to himself. He knew he was thinking like an adventurer when he thought of an idea that was actually in the book that taught him. At the very least, he was one step closer to becoming a fully fledged adventurer, and that made him happy.

"Ok, the next thing about priorities is knowing what you need to look for in the next town you visit," Jake continued, turning his head forward to see where he was walking, "Food and water can be provided by the town's restaurant or really nice people, while resting in towns allows you to take breaks safely and reassess your goal. But if the town doesn't have a restaurant, you can try and ask a homeowner for food, but never flaunt your heroism to them. That is rude and abuse of your status, a violation of the hero's code."

"That makes sense," Finn said, "I mean, I'd never flaunt my hero name and expect something in return. That's just jerky."

"Yeah, heroes must always retain their obligations. Never ask for food unless offered, unless you are starving to death. There's another section related to eating in the wild, but that's another topic."

"Yeah, yeah, about eating berries and fruits, right?"

"Yeah, pretty much."

"And meat, too," Finn said as he looked up at the sky, until he thought a bit more about the subject of meat, "Hey Jake, where does meat come from?"

"Huh?"

"Meat comes from nature, right? So, where would we get it?" he asked.

"Uhh…" Jake had never brought himself to tell Finn about where meat came from because he was worried he would freak out. Jake knew he had to tell Finn sometime, but there was always the concern that his heroism would clash with his omnivorous diet. Half of the edible animals in Ooo were sentient, and turning into a vegetarian wasn't an option either, since most of the world's vegetables went extinct after the last apocalypse.

"You'll find out when you're older, Finn," Jake simply answered.

"Aww, you have to let me know some things," Finn whined, "You said the same thing when I saw you and Rainicorn-"

"Uh, Finn, we should move on to the next segment," Jake said quickly with beads of sweat on the side of his face, changing the subject to avoid remembering that embarrassing moment.

"Alright, fine," Finn gave in, but not before he leaned into Jake's ear and said, "but you will teach me those wrestling moves."

"Uhh…heheh, uh, yeah, sure," Jake replied putting on a fake smile, "But let's get serious, onto the next tidbit."

"Okay," Finn sat upright on his back again, waiting for the next lecture.

"Hm, what else was in that book…" Jake muttered, "Oh! Weapons. If the town ahead has a blacksmith, be sure to always have him inspect your weapon for any defects or repairs. You can't fight evil if your weapon isn't as strong as you are."

At this, Finn reached for his sword and unsheathed it, holding it in the air as he stared at it. Even though Finn wasn't a blacksmith, he could see the painfully conspicuous scratches and dents lined up on the blades edge. It lacked luster and looked almost rickety, even for gold. Finn had never taken notice of his swords condition until now and he felt bad for it, almost like he neglected a trusted friend who had done so much for him. He felt like he had to return the favor somehow.

"Yeah… I guess I could stop by at the blacksmith in the next town," Finn admitted.

"Mmhm," Jake hummed, "It's a miracle that thing can still cut."

"I hope it doesn't cost much…" Finn said.

"Fixing a sword made of gold isn't as easy as it…huh?"

"What is it, Jake?" Finn said, sheathing his sword.

"I see something up ahead, like a mountain," Jake said, squinting his eyes.

"Is it the Shoe Kingdom?"

"No, I'm pretty sure that isn't it. We'd have seen the castle a few yards back."

"Well, giddy up, Jake. We aren't going to find out any sooner at this pace," Finn said, butting his heels into Jake's fur.

"Alright, dude. Whatever you say," Jake said.

Jake paused a bit, easing his body into sprinting position. With a sudden jolt, Jake was running at fast speed, only because he was making long strides with his legs. He was really jogging. But to Finn, he might as well be running twice as fast as Finn could run. The fierce winds atop the running beast reminded Finn of the incident back at the Forever Train and the mysterious identity of the bombers, but as Jake would say, 'Adventurers move on from one adventure to another. It's best not to be concerned with minor details.'

In a matter of seconds, the two reached the mysterious mountain, only to see that it was much smaller up close. The rock was a different color from the ground, colored much like the walls in a dungeon, and was pretty wide despite not being a mountain.

"This is it?" Finn asked as Jake shrunk back to his normal size, "an ordinary rock mound?"

Finn hopped off of Jake's back and walked towards the mound. Jake reached for his bag to get the map.

"Hm, maybe this rock is a landmark on the map," Jake said, opening the map.

Finn touched the rock with his hand. It felt really rough like he expected, unfortunately that seemed to be the only possible thrilling discovery he'll have about this rock.

"Lame. I was expecting something super cool, like a rock dragon, or a spaceship," Finn said to himself.

"Hey Finn!" Jake said, running over to him with the map, "the map says we're close to the Shoe Kingdom."

"Cool, we should head there and look for a blacksmith," Finn said as he looked at the map Jake was holding.

"But this rock isn't an ordinary rock," Jake pointed to the rock illustrated on the map with his free foot, "This is the Sole Mines."

"Soul mines?" Finn asked.

"No, Sole mines," Jake corrected.

"Uh, that's what I said…" Finn replied, confused.

"The Shoe Kingdom happens to be famous for the Sole Mines," Jake said as he rolled up the map, "Beaten only by their fabulous shoe refineries."

"So…what exactly is the Sole Mines so famous for?" Finn asked.

Jake put away the map into his bag, "I'll show you. Let's look for the entrance."

Jake, and soon Finn, walked around the walls of the enormous rock. Finn was still not amused about the place. He could care less about shoes, so what would be so interesting about some mines near the Shoe Kingdom? Granted he had never seen mines before, but if it was anything like the dungeons he used to explore, he had seen it all before.

Eventually, Finn and Jake saw what looked like rails around the corner. Finn immediately took interest because they reminded him of train tracks and it was easy to note the similarity, considering the events of the previous day.

"Railroads?" he asked.

"Yeah, mines have them," Jake answered, "only they don't carry trains, but mine carts."

Maybe there was more to mines than he thought, Finn thought to himself as he placed a finger near his chin.

After another turn around the corner, Finn and Jake came upon the entrance of the mines. Wooden bars held the entrance up and railroad tracks filed out of the entrance from the left side. Within the cave, there was a mine cart sitting on the tracks, probably left unattended for years.

"Whoa," Jake uttered.

Finn, however, was not impressed.

It wasn't that he found mines fascinating. Actually, he had seen this sort of thing a million times already. Being an adventurer, he was used to staring down the entrances of caves or other ominous entrances with creepy atmosphere or daunting darkness. This was considered 'meh' to him, like comparing a bike to a motorcycle. It was too normal.

"It's not that scary," Finn said.

"C'mon Finn, let's check it out," Jake said as he walked inside.

"But Jake," Finn called out, "What about our real adventure?"

"We got plenty of time for that. C'mon in, the darkness is fine," Jake said as the cave echoed his words.

Finn groaned and followed his friend into the cave. As he walked past the mine cart, he looked inside and saw a pile of shoes in it. From high heels to casual wear, Finn thought it was strange for there to be a pile like that. However, he ultimately disregarded it and continued walking on inward, eventually coming into a large room in the mine. It was too dark to see anything, except for his dog whose color could be seen with what little light there was. He was bent over, looking at something.

"Hey Finn, I think I found the generator," he exclaimed.

With the flick of a switch, the room was beginning to light up with light bulbs lining the walls. Finn looked around as the room slowly illuminated, but what he could see astounded him.

"Whoa…"

The room was much bigger than he thought. There were ledges on the walls with shiny minerals glistening in the rock. There were mounds of rock and dirt here and there on the floor. The mine cart tracks from the entrance split into several other tracks, some tracks lead nowhere while others lead deeper into the mines through tunnels. But the most conspicuous thing about the room was the massive pile of shoes in all shapes and sizes in a corner of the room. This place wasn't a dungeon, but it had a very strong industrial feel in the atmosphere and that was what made it very different from a dungeon.

"I've never seen a mineshaft before…" Finn said to himself.

Finn began to wander in the room. He could easily see the amount of labor left in the room, seeing some very craggy walls with pickaxes littered on the ground. Upon closer inspection, Finn noticed that there were imprints of shoes in the wall, along with more shoes littering the ground near the base of the wall. Finn walked closer to the walls to see and pressed his hand against the imprints. It was the perfect shape of a boot. Looking down on the ground, he noticed a boot with a similar shape to the one in the wall. He picked it up, looked at the impression, and curiously plugged the boot into the slot.

"A perfect fit," Finn said, the shoe easily shaped into the wall.

"Huh, some of these shoes have rocks in them," Jake commented, picking up some shoes from the massive pile.

"So Jake," Finn said, walking towards him, "Is this where the Shoe Kingdom got all of its shoes?"

"I guess so," he said, sniffing a sneaker.

"You guess so?" Finn repeated, "I thought you knew about this place."

"I remember a long time ago about my parents talking about this place," Jake said, remembering when he was a pup, "Mom wanted Dad to go work at these mines, mainly to get some cute shoes for her."

"Huh, yeah. I think I remember something like that," Finn said, briefly remembering the argument, "how come he didn't go?"

"Because he had an actual job as a news reporter, and the mines were way too far away. It was tough convincing Mom but he managed to do it, except she wouldn't live it down for a few years."

"Hmm," Finn hummed, turning to look at one of the tunnels. There weren't any signs of people working, no hammering, no drilling, no grunting. It was as if the whole place was abandoned. "So, what happened to the mines?" Finn asked.

"How should I know?" Jake responded.

"Well, let's take a look around. We might find some clues around here," Finn said, walking into the nearest tunnel.

"Uh, Finn," Jake said, cautiously following him, "Don't you think wandering aimlessly into tunnels is a bit of a safety hazard?"

"What do you mean?" Finn asked, still walking.

"I mean, what if these mines are abandoned because the caves are unstable?" he said, staying close to Finn.

"Don't be scared, Jake," Finn said, "besides, if that was a danger, there would have been a sign that said something like that."

As Finn was saying thing, the two wandered into a tunnel left of a split with a big red, square sign above the entrance. It had the picture of a skull on it and read 'Danger! Collapsible Cavern! Do not enter!' The two failed to notice the eyesore of a sign and continued down into the tunnel with naivety.

They did notice, however, that the further they went into the tunnel, the darker it got. There weren't any light bulbs or torches lining the walls like the other tunnels had. And also, the tunnel was not lined with rails. Naturally, Finn got suspicious.

"Huh, why aren't there any lights or tracks here?" he asked.

"Maybe because the guy setting them up got kidnapped by giant cave worms," Jake said, shaking.

"Jake, stop clinging to my leg like that," Finn said, looking at the dog clutching him liked a scared child, "it's hard to wa- WAH!"

"Finn!" Jake yelled in surprise.

To Jake's relief, Finn merely tripped. He lifted himself up off the ground, shaking his head of daze, when he noticed a nearly invisible string hovering above the ground near him.

"Huh? A wire?" Finn said, instinctively tugging at the string.

The string was resistant to his tugging, as if it was tightly tied to something heavy. Finn pulled at it more, finding that it could be stretched further. Unbeknownst to him, the string was wired to a trigger in the ceiling, and the more he tugged, the closer the trigger was going to snap.

"Uh, Finn…" Jake said, noticing the crackle of rocks loosening in the ceiling.

Finn pulled the wire as much as he could until it broke with a loud snap. He only then noticed the sound of rocks moving above him. Looking up, the ceiling suddenly gave way to an avalanche of rocks.

"IT'S A TRAP!"

SMASH!

"…that…was close…" Finn gasped.

In an instinctive reflex, Finn hopped backwards to avoid the rocks from crushing him. If he had reacted even a bit late, he might have been crushed under the falling rocks. Finn panted deeply for that he had a close brush with death. Although he didn't even remember moving out of the way of being flattened, he wasn't going to question that.

Jake, seeing Finn safe, walked close to the collapsed rocks. He bent down on one knee to see little bit of the string that Finn managed to pull out. A cave in was one thing, but a rigged one was very suspicious.

"Very strange," Jake said, "someone set this trap."

Finn got up off the ground, still shaken by the trap, "Who'd put a trap here? I thought these mines were abandoned."

"Apparently not, if someone had to set up a trap for people like us," Jake said, getting off the ground.

"Hey!" yelled a voice from the opening of the tunnel.

Finn and Jake turned to the direction of the voice only to see the blinding beam of a flashlight. Both of them shielded their eyes from the light, squinting their eyes to see the owner of the flashlight. Eventually, a small person came into view. He looked very much like dwarf, with bluish skin, a white, shaggy beard, and a red pointed hat, but he was wearing what looked like miner attire, which was difficult to see under his beard.

"Oh, it's just a bunch of kids," he said, "What are you kids doing in this cave? Didn't you read the big warning sign in front of the entrance?"

"Uhh, sorry, we got a little lost," Jake said.

"Hey, do you know who set this…" Finn said, but before he could finish, the gnome interrupted him.

"Gasp! Did you guys cause that rock fall?" he said, pointing his light to the massive boulder behind them, "You guys can't be here. We have to leave."

"But, what about the-?" Finn tried to say, but the gnome grabbed his hand and pulled him out of the cave before he could say anymore.

Meanwhile, back in the Candy Kingdom Castle, Princess Bubblegum had only just recently learned from her friend Rainicorn that Finn and Jake had embarked on an adventure long before she sent that letter to them. She knew very well that it wasn't her or anyone's fault and it was simply a matter of bad timing, but it all caused accumulated stress and she had to have relief, or else objects will break. So she decided it was best to seek alleviation with a good long shower to clear her mind.

Fortunately, it worked. Bubblegum was at ease after the shower and having combed her hair. Tying the knot around her royal robe and slipping on her marshmallow slippers, she headed out the bathroom door to her chamber nearby so that she could dress. The chilly halls briefly reminded Bubblegum why she was sad as it was very reminiscent of the sadness she felt when Finn broke down in front of her. She still felt guilty about the whole ordeal a few days ago and felt even worse when she thought that Finn wouldn't get her letter in time before the wedding. But that would be an exaggerated thought. It's not like he'll be gone for a whole month, right? Bubblegum believed she had to make things right between her and Finn before the wedding. She just had to…

"Hello, Bubblegum."

Bubblegum jumped at her name, breaking her train of thought. Before her, his back leaning against the wall in a cool way, was Matthew, her soon-to-be husband. Was he waiting for her?

"Uh, hi Matthew. You scared me for a second there," Bubblegum said, faking a smile.

Matthew chuckled, it almost sounded sinister.

"I have that effect on people sometimes," he said, lifting himself off the wall, "Bubblegum, mind telling me about the schedule?"

"Uhh… what do you mean?" she asked. She'd step backwards, but she shunned that thought out of her head as she didn't want to be rude.

"The ugly butler thing told me our wedding is in a month. Why is that?" Matthew folded his arms.

"Uhh…oh! It has to do with my Royal Contract," Bubblegum said, "I forgot to show it to you yesterday because I was busy with other things."

"Oh really?" Matthew inquired, brow raised.

"Yeah, heheh. See, you have to wait a month before we can marry," she said.

"Hmm, that's not how I read it in the contract," Matthew said, finger on his chin.

Bubblegum tensed up at this. She lied to him, and he knew it, yet, how was he able to keep a calm façade?

"If I recall correctly, you can hold back the wedding until the day before your sixteenth birthday, which just so happens to be a month from now," he said as he propped himself against the wall with his hand, legs crossed.

Bubblegum swallowed the lump in her throat.

Matthew let loose a loud laugh.

"Bubblegum, you didn't have to lie to me," he said after drawing in breath, "I mean, sure, it wasn't very nice, but the schedule was entirely your choice. Nothing I could say would help it."

Bubblegum was very surprised to hear this from him. She wasn't sure what to expect, actually, but it definitely wasn't him being so understanding.

"It's your contract. It's your call. We're still getting married, regardless," Matthew said.

Bubblegum knew he was right. They were going to get married in a month and it was her decision to hold the wedding back for that long. And not only that, she lied to him, and he knew it. But wait…

…if he had already read the Contract, why did he ask her about the schedule?

"Uh, I suppose so," Bubblegum responded. She was too tense to have a proper conversation with him. She needed to return to her chambers and calm down, "Matthew, if you don't mind, I need to get to my bedroom."

"Sure thing, dear."

Bubblegum flinched at 'dear'. She was disgusted for some reason. It wasn't that Matthew was repulsive, no, she admits he's quite handsome, but there was just something about him that made her feel sick every time he was around. She couldn't explain this feeling, but it made her want to avoid Matthew as much as she could before the wedding.

As Bubblegum walked beside Matthew, he quickly reached out and grabbed her left shoulder and spun her around with his arm folded around her. Bubblegum found herself facing the opposite way, with Matthew uncomfortably close behind her in a tight hug.

"Oh, and Bubblegum," Matthew said into her ear, "No need to be so tense when we speak. Ease up. It's only marriage…"

Bubblegum shivered as he spoke into her ear. His words had a chilling effect that made her tremble with something not unlike fear. And not only that, he felt cold. Very cold. He had her in an unwanted position and she wanted to break free, but she was too afraid to move.

For the second time that week, she was in an icy imprisonment.

Finally, after what seemed like seconds, Matthew released his grip and calmly walked away, as if nothing ever happened. Bubblegum stood there, still trembling, as the feeling of his cold grip had not left her. She shook her head, hoping to forget the incident ever happened, turned around, and quickly paced her way to her chamber. She was still curious as to why Matthew asked her about the schedule when he had already read the contract. He may have not known why she did it; actually, he didn't even ask. So what was the point of that?

Before Bubblegum reached for the doorknob, it occurred to her what the meaning of that conversation was.

She started to tremble again, this time much more than when Matthew was holding her. She clenched her fist tightly and held back her tears, but as one tear fell from her eye, she slammed her fist into the wall and groaned distressingly. He knew there was no avoiding the marriage, whether it was the next day or a month or two.

He wanted to see her afraid. And he succeeded.

"A trap, you say?" the gnome responded.

"Yeah. It almost killed us," Finn replied.

"It almost killed you," Jake pointed out.

"It almost killed me," Finn repeated.

Finn managed to tell the gnome miner about the trap while they were being dragged out of the mine. At the moment, the two were walking a distance from the mines, heading to a nearby house where office work for the miners were done.

"Hmm, how very strange," the dwarf said, scratching his chin under his beard, "this is the first time I've ever heard of such an incident in all the years I've worked here."

"You worked in the mines?" Jake asked.

"Yep, I worked as the admin miner, keeping all of the other miners in check," the gnome said proudly.

"What exactly did you mine for in their?" Finn asked.

"Isn't it obvious?" the gnome replied, "Shoes!"

"Shoes? Just shoes?"

"Yep. All kinds of shoes, too. Boots, high heels, galoshes, sandals, slippers, tappers, flying shoes, pancake shoes, glass shoes, snail shoes, magic shoes, horn shoes, shoehorns, shoes for bears, shoes for octopuses, shoes for ghosts, super shoes, space shoes, spring shoes, kuribo shoes, dinosaur-"

"Alright! We get it! You mined for a lot of shoes!" Jake interrupted.

"Oh, sorry about that," he apologized, "See, I'm a shoe specialist. Shoes are my life."

"We're adventurers," Finn said, "And adventuring is our life."

"Really? Where ya from?"

"We live between the Candy Kingdom and the Ice Kingdom," Jake said.

"Wow, that's really far away," the gnome said, "May I see your shoe for a second?"

"Uhh," before Finn could answer, the gnome moved in front of Finn, stopping, and kneeled down to inspect his shoe.

"Hmm, size eleven, polyester black, made in England," he said, grabbing the shoe with Finn's foot still in it. Finn cautiously balanced himself while the gnome kept staring intensely at the shoe, "It has been spit shined before, signs of grass stains and dirt," he gave it a sniff, "and dead stuff."

"Wow, he's good," Jake commented.

The gnome then licked the tip of the shoe, earning a disgusted look from the two.

"You've been in many dungeons. As well as somewhere sugary. You also spent time in a snowy place. …oh, and you've been to Lumpy Space before."

"Wow, you're really good," Finn said, the gnome releasing his foot.

"Years of practice," he said, pointing at his mouth.

"So, why isn't anyone working in the mines?" Jake asked as the group resumed walking, "There are still a crazy amount of shoes left."

"Well, you see, the Shoe Kingdom hit an economical bump and have fallen into a hole they dug in."

"Huh?" Finn asked, not understanding anything about economics.

"It's money talk," Jake said to the boy.

"The shoes you saw in the mines were just plain regular shoes, and nobody wants those. Everyone only wants fancy jewelry encrusted shoes, and there was plenty of it in the mines."

"But those shoes sold a lot, didn't they?" Finn said.

"Well, of course they did, son. Unfortunately, it also ran other businesses out when the rare shoes were easy to come by. So only the most expensive shoes prevailed in the market."

"How was that a bad thing?"

"Rare shoes were easy to damage or stain. You can't wash out the stains of a leather shoe, and it's impossible to repair a damaged diamond shoe. And of course, being a shoe meant it was inevitably going to get dirty."

"But they're still shoes, right? You can still wear them like real shoes," Jake said.

"Those shoes were treated like royalty or ultimate fashion. They'd be worth nothing if they got damaged."

"But what about regular shoes?" Finn asked, "Weren't there any expensive shoes that didn't have jewelry or that kind of junk?"

"Those shoes were ranked by fashion. Damage could easily be repaired but…"

"But, what?"

"Most of the cobblers in the kingdom lost their jobs when the lower businesses fell. And it only got worse when the mines were nearly out of shoes."

"How bad did it get?" Jake asked.

"With the shoes starting to run low, prices for the shoes began to go up. People spent a lot of money for the pricey shoes, and no one had enough money for any other things besides food and water. Cobblers eventually went out of business because people started hoarding their shoes, keeping them safe from damage. Eventually, the economy fell apart, and the Shoe Kingdom is doomed."

Finn felt saddened by hearing this story. Economics wasn't his strong suit, but if it was, he'd figure out a way to get the Shoe Kingdom out of this money jam. That's just how he was.

"How are you coping?" Jake asked.

"Ehh, I'm thinking about moving back to the forests with my family. I mean, I loved the Shoe Kingdom and all, but let's face it, it's doomed."

"Where did all of the money go?" Finn asked.

"To the owner of the mines," he said, "For all of the shoes that were sold in the kingdom, he collected the profit. He became a multibillionaire in the span of a year."

"Where is he now?" Finn asked.

"That's funny. No one knows," the gnome said, "As soon as the economy started to decline, he sold the mines to someone else and hightailed it out of here."

"Hmm, sounds rather fishy," Finn said, stroking his chin.

"I'd say it's more like a matter of monopoly," Jake said.

After a long discussion, the three finally reached the house the miner was telling them about. It was an ordinary building with two stories, a staircase on the side connecting the floors, a blue roof, and a chimney.

"Here we are. The office of Sole Mines, Inc.," the gnome said, "Miners would have their lunches here and rest in between shifts. It also has a fireplace for those could winter nights."

"Rest sounds good. My legs are tired," Jake said.

"If you guys are hungry, we have some food inside the house," he said.

"Awesome, I was getting kind of… wait, 'we'?" Finn said.

"Some of the employees stayed behind," the gnome explained, "They were evicted out of their homes in the Shoe Kingdom."

"Heh, eviction sucks," Finn commented, walking on towards the house.

"Guys, I'd like to introduce you to what's left of Sole Mines, Inc.," the gnome said, introducing Finn and Jake to the people in the lounge.

A woman was sitting on a couch, holding a glass slipper in her hand. She had purple skin and yellow hair tied into a bun, a beautiful yellow dress with shoulder cuffs, arm sleeves, and a wavy skirt that stopped around her knees. She wasn't wearing any shoes, but she was sitting in front a table filled with glittering shoes. All she needed was a tiara to be easily mistaken for a princess.

"That's Cindy," the gnome said.

As Cindy waved at the two, the attention was on a pale green person sitting on a desk, with a blue shoe in his hand and a tool in the other. He was wearing blue overalls that had gloves stuffed in the back pocket. He wore a brown shirt under the overalls and was wearing boots that seemed to be made alligator skin. He also wore a raggedy hat, with scratches and patches on it. He turned to look at the two newcomers and his big, blue goggles were clearly seen. His eyes couldn't be seen through them. Next to him was also a pile of shoes, only they were very plain, and another pile on the other side, with the shoes burnt or ripped in various places.

"That's Monty," the gnome said, the green man waved at the two with a smile and the hand carrying a tool.

"And my name is Ed," the gnome said, directing attention to himself, "I forgot to introduce myself earlier."

"I'm Finn, and this is my buddy, Jake," Finn greeted.

"'Sup crazy shoe people?" he said, the room responded with a greeting.

Cindy carefully put the glass footwear down before standing up and walking towards the two.

"I'll show them around, Ed," she said.

The gnome sounded off an "Ok," as she walked onward towards a wall full of photographs, with Finn and Jake following loyally.

"These photos were taken during the peak of our economy," she said as she pointed to a photo with a huge pile of golden shoes, "We keep them as nostalgic reminders. Yeah, I admit it's living in the past, but it's way better than the present."

The photos depicted many events and procedures that occurred in the mines. One photo showed some of the machinery they used to excavate the cave while another showed the building of the mine cart tracks. Finn looked at some of the photos higher up, assuming they were in chronological order. He noticed one that was black and white and had several miners in front of the entrance to the cave.

"Why's that one a different color?" he asked, pointing to the photo.

"Oh, it was taken by the founder of Sole Mines, Inc. He kept a lot of old stuff, like the old school camera he used to take the photo," she explained.

"So that's what the mines looked like before you mined the heck out of it?"

"Yep. The discovery of these mineshafts led to the foundation of the Shoe Kingdom," Cindy explained, "As the founder, he was supposed to be the King."

"Supposed to?" Jake said.

"Yeah. He was only interested in building a company based on selling the shoes. His brother, who was a marketer, sold the shoes in a nearby village from here, which grew as people bought the shoes, and is now known as the Shoe Kingdom. He became the Shoe King instead."

Finn noticed a picture taken in the same large mineshaft they were in back in the cave, only it was cluttered with enough people to fill a castle.

"Are those the miners that worked here?" Finn asked, pointing to it.

"Yep. As soon as word got out that we were hiring miners, we were getting applicants by the day," Cindy exclaimed, as she pointed to another photo with a hall lined up with miners working, "It was here that husbands and boyfriends from all over the world toiled and slaved themselves on their woman's whim."

"I remember my parents arguing about something like that," Jake said.

"Miners did get discounts on the shoes," Cindy explained.

"That's a crud load of craze for a bunch of silly shoes," Finn said.

In response, Cindy's face turned dark and frightening. "It's not craze, it's a love," she said darkly.

Finn, and Jake, gulped at her sudden mood change. Finn obviously said the wrong thing to provoke this side of her, but how was he suppose to know it was insulting shoes?

She couldn't compare to Bubblegum, though.

"So, what happened to the miners?" Finn asked, changing the subject.

"Well…" Cindy said, her attitude normal, "As prices started to go up, we didn't have enough money to pay all of the miners their regular salary. So we had to fire some."

"We started with the inefficient workers," Monty said out loud, still focusing on the show he was tinkering with, "But as prices continued to rise, we had to relieve more and more workers until Sole Mines went out of business."

Finn was astonished at how the mines had such an impact on so many people. It was the driving force that birthed a new kingdom, and it was also the downfall. So many people lost their jobs because of an economical chain reaction. It hurt him to see all of this happening, but no one was getting hurt, only suffering. The poverty driven kingdom of shoes was going to disappear as quickly as it had risen, and the worst part was that Finn didn't know how to help it.

"What's he doing over there?" Jake asked.

"Oh, Monty's just trying to save the economy by decorating plain shoes with quartz and paint," she explained, "They look like the rare shoes everyone used to buy, but I've told him before, it won't work."

"They don't have to be rare to garner any value," Monty shot back, "As long as they look pretty, people are going to want one."

"They were successful because they were rare," Cindy replied, "No one is going to fall for your scam, Monty."

"It's not a scam! I'm trying to save the frikkin Kingdom!"

While the two were arguing, Finn noticed another picture, this time with just a bunch of rocks piled in a tunnel.

"What's with that picture?" he asked.

Cindy, redirecting her attention back at the two, looked at the photo and looked sad.

"That one…well…"

"Is he talking about the cave in?" Monty asked.

Finn and Jake noted the words 'cave-in'.

"Yeah, that one," she to him, turning back to face the duo, "You see, some of the tunnels weren't very stable. We lost several miners to cave-ins and that seriously kicked our industry in the crotch."

"Ouch. Sorry," Jake said sympathetically, "I wouldn't think anyone would want to work in the mines after that."

"No, people still worked," Cindy said, "They knew very well the risks of working in mines."

Finn stroked his chin, thinking about the rock falls and the cave-ins. He thought back to the trap that he and Jake found and couldn't help but try to connect them to the cave-ins in the photos. It was possible that the accidents were also rigged by the same person. Only thing is, nobody would set up traps for nothing, unless they were protecting something…

But what?

"Okay guys!" the gnome said as he entered the room, carrying Styrofoam boxes, "It's lunch time. Today's special is Chinese food!"

Finn suddenly forgot about the mystery as he heard the gnome speak. His stomach responded by giving off a low growl. Finn had not eaten breakfast that day and it was almost noon. He was very hungry.

"Chinese food! Count me in!" Finn said.

"Foreign cuisine!" Jake exclaimed.

"We've been walking for twenty hours," land shark complained, "Can we take a break?"

"Finn and Jake haven't moved from their spot for a while," science cat said, focusing on the device, "We have to catch up to them."

While Finn and Jake were having lunch at the Sole Mines, their old enemies, science cat and land shark, had been walking nonstop towards their destination. At the moment, they were closing in on a nearby train station close to the Water Kingdom and were walking alongside the railroad tracks. They'd have taken the train at the station near the Nut Domain, but apparently the trains were out of service. They never found out why.

During most of the walk, land shark had been very complaint and reluctant to be traveling so close to the Water Kingdom. If one were to guess, it was most likely because of family issues, or someone he didn't want to see lived nearby, or both. He kept his annoyance within himself and avoided stretching the issue because it wouldn't change anything, but that did not keep him from groaning every now and then.

"Hrmm," land shark groaned again.

Science cat sighed, "We aren't going to get there any faster if you keep groaning like that."

Land shark scoffed, "Like I'd want to…"

From the distance, the sound of a train roared ahead them, catching their attention as they looked out at the railroads ahead. The two backed away from the tracks as a precaution as they watched the train far away enlarge in perspective. For some reason, the train was going the other direction, which the duo noticed. Secondly, the train didn't look like the transportation models. It was a more bulky model, kind of ugly for a train, and was moving really slowly. The cat and shark stood still and watched as the odd train moved past them until it came to their sight the third odd thing about the train. Towing behind it were train carts, except they were on backwards, and no one was inside them. But when they heard the sound of screeching metal, there came the fourth oddity about the scene. After the sixth cart towed an indescribable heap of junk on wheels, one of the wheels was damaged and scraping against the rails. Various blades and plates of metal were stacked on one another as the junk rocked on the tracks. Though clearly metal carnage, the shape of it was very reminiscent of a train engine as the grill was still hanging from the heap.

The two watched wordlessly as the garbage was dragged away. The train made another loud whistle a distance away as land shark turned to the feline.

"I think that's why the train was out of service," science cat said, "…or rather, what's left of it."

"Jeez, what happened?" the shark asked as they started walking again.

"That was quite a train wreck," science cat said, "From the looks of it, it was probably an explosion."

"Maybe the engine overloaded?" land shark asked.

"Maybe. We'll find out when we get to the Water Kingdom station," science cat said.

"Uhh, why?" he asked.

"I thought you said we should take a break," the scientist retorted.

"Err, yeah. I did…" he said as he looked down.

The carnivorous fish uttered another groan.

Eventually, the two finally reached the Water Kingdom train station. It wasn't as big as the one by the Nut Domain, since there it's one of the main stations, but it was still packed with people with places to go. The two found some seats to rest on while science cat had grabbed a newspaper, curious as to what was the exact nature of the accident and hoping it was published in the papers. As the cat began reading, land shark wanted to see the DNA tracker.

"Hey cat, can I check the tracker for a minute?"

"Sure," he said as he flipped a page.

Land shark took the tracker from the feline's lap and looked at the monitor. According to the trail, Finn was at this very station the previous day. He was still located near the Sole Mines and hadn't moved since science cat confirmed his location.

'Must be resting,' land shark thought.

"Huh," science cat said, "Check this out."

Land shark leaned to his right to see the article the feline was talking about. The article detailed that the train was rigged with explosives. Several people attempted to disarm the bombs, but they failed to stop the engine from blowing up. They managed to save everyone on the train, however.

"Who'd bomb a train?" the shark asked.

"It doesn't say who. There aren't any suspects identified yet," the cat said as the shark returned his attention to the gadget.

Land shark scrolled the map with his fins, checking for any nearby landmarks they can keep an eye out for when they eventually reach his location. Other than the Sole Mines, there weren't any notable locations or buildings for miles other than the Shoe Kingdom. But then he thought, doesn't the Shoe Kingdom have a train station?

He scrolled the map further into the Shoe Kingdom and saw the station right there on the border of the domain's fort. If they took the train to the Shoe Kingdom, they could easily catch up to Finn and Jake.

"Hey science cat," he said, "We can take a train to the Shoe Kingdom, can't we?"

The scientist looked at his friend oddly, "What for? We don't have any money."

"Well, Finn and Jake haven't left the Sole Mines yet, and…uh…" he started to stutter, "…oh right. Money," he said as looked back at the tracker, disappointed.

The sound of a train alerted the people waiting for it in the station. Science cat and land shark perked up at the sound since the train was suppose to be out of commission. They personally saw the wreckage. And yet, closing in was a train with carts full of people, the wheels screeching as they slowed down.

"So the rumors are false," science cat deducted.

"That train is smaller than the Forever Train," land shark pointed out, the train now completely still.

The carts opened the doors as many passengers left, which is what happens when train schedules back up for a day. As this was the Water Kingdom station, most of the characters were aquatic animals or variations of them, such as octopuses, ammonites, sea slugs, sea cucumbers, squids, hermit crabs, sea turtles, and other shelled, mollusk creatures. As soon as they left the carts, the train attendants walked outside and stood by the doorway, ready to accept the new passenger's tickets.

Land shark let out a sigh. He almost expected his parents and brothers to show up in that train cart. How very coincidental and unfortunate that would've been. Inside, land shark laughed at the thought. That would've been way too coincidental. It would be like, for that moment, all laws of reason would be pardoned and the polarity of the universe would turn against him just so that he could have the misfortune to reunite with his family that he did not want to see. Thank goodness there was no possibility of that occurring.

"Elliot?" a feminine voice said.

Too bad the universe loved baiting unsuspecting people with a false sense of security, just for laughs.

From behind the seats the two were resting on stood a family of sharks standing on their tail fins. The largest one was wearing a blue tie, despite having no clip, and a scar above his left eye, next to him was a shark with a pink hat, a beige purse, and long eyelashes, clearly female, and a smaller shark wearing a white and blue striped shirt. Science cat turned around to meet the family, but land shark was praying as hard as he could that he did not just hear the voice of his mother.

"Elliot? Is that your name?" the cat asked him.

"Elliot! You turn around and greet your mom right now!" the father shark nearly shouted.

Land shark, or Elliot, sighed frustratingly, giving up, and turned himself towards the family behind him, lifting up one fin. "Hey guys."

"Elliot!" the mother shark said, hugging her son in glee, "It's so good to see you again!"

"Haven't seen you in years, bro!" the little shark said.

"Yeah… hi guys," Elliot said disdainfully.

"It's been years! How has my baby been?" she said, holding her sons face.

"Probably still living on land," the father said, at which Elliot groaned.

"Land shark, you never told me you had a family in the Water Kingdom," science cat asked.

"Oh! And who is this adorable little companion of yours?" the mother asked, petting the cat.

"Hey, don't do that…it…" he said, denying the patting at first but gave in with a meow. "Mreoowww…"

"He's a friend of mine's, okay?" land shark answered.

"Wow, a scientist," the young fish said, surprised, "I thought they were a myth."

"What the- who told you… ugh!" land shark groaned, putting a fin over his forehead.

"What are you doing here, anyways? I thought you left to college," the mother asked, still petting the cat.

"Mom, I told you I moved away. I didn't go to college," Elliot replied.

"Yeah. That would be expecting too much from you," the father shark retorted, Elliot growling at this.

"Honey, please," the female shark, no longer petting science cat, said to her husband.

"Look, we're just resting here, okay?" Elliot answered, "We're on a journey, so butt out."

"A journey? You mean, like an adventure?" the young shark eagerly asked.

"Ehh, sort of."

"Elliot, what ever happened to living underwater?" the father asked, "Just because we can walk on land doesn't mean we should live on it."

"Dad, again with the land/water talk?" he complained, "It's my life choice. Just leave me alone!"

The father shark crossed his fins.

"It's not a choice I support. There, I said it."

There was an awkward silence around the family, with only the murmur of people and the hum of the train engine keeping the room supplied with sound. Uncomfortable with the air, science cat was about to speak, but Elliot's little brother spoke first.

"So… what kind of adventure are you on?" he said.

"…a long one, okay?" land shark replied.

"Oh! Were you planning on taking the train? I can pay for your tickets if you want," the mother said.

Elliot waved his fin, "No thanks, we don't really-"

"Yes we would!" science cat interrupted, "We need some tickets to the Shoe Kingdom!"

"First land, now shoes?" the father shark said to himself.

Land shark groaned, "Look, the train's about to leave in a few minutes," he said as the line of passengers was beginning to dwindle, "You can't pay for both of our tickets in time."

"That's okay, you can use our Revo Pass," the mother said.

Elliot looked at her in surprise, so did his father but quickly looked irritated.

"What? Our Revo Pass? Seriously?" he said, "You know how much that thing costed?"

"Oh, hush, dear," she said as she reached into her purse and pulled out a card, "Elliot can mail it back to us when he's done with his adventure."

"…fine," the father shark said as she handed the card to her son, "but if you overcharge that card, our next vacation is coming out of your wallet!"

Land shark just groaned as he accepted the pass. "C'mon, science cat, let's go."

"It was nice seeing you guys!" the cat said as he and the shark got up off of their seats and walked towards the train.

"Bye!" the mother waved.

"Find me some slippers!" the young fish said, resulting in a light smack on the head from his dad.

"Don't you start with me, too."

As the two walked towards the train, science cat asked, "You have a nice family. Why don't you talk about them much?"

"There's a reason I moved away from the Water Kingdom," Elliot replied, "my dad is too strict, my mom is overprotective, and my brother is an idiot."

"They seemed like good people," science cat said, looking back at the family leaving the station.

"You wouldn't last a day under their roof," Elliot remarked, looking at the- "And stop calling me Elliot!"

"Tickets please," a fat person made of cheese asked as the two approached the train cart.

Elliot, I mean, land shark, handed the attendant the pass, who sounded off a whistle when he saw it was a Revo Pass. He slid the card in a read by the door and after the reader processed the information, it sounded off a BEEP before the attendant returned the pass to the shark. With entry granted, the two walked in the cart, land shark relieved that he was going to leave the Water Kingdom for the last time, at least he hoped.

From under one of the benches in the station emerged an ice blue cat. With the shark and cat in the train, it ran to the cart to board it, but was stopped by the cheese man.

"Ticket?" he asked.

The cat looked up at him, silently staring with a cute face. The train attendant did not give in to the charm.

"No ticket, no entry," he said as he crossed his arms.

The cat walked away in disappointment, but he had to board the train somehow. He looked around a station for a bag or something he could use to stowaway on the train. He then saw a witch like lady, who had a quilt on her shoulders and uncombed hair, with a bunch of cats following her about to board the train. He just thought of an idea.

"Tickets please," the cheese man asked the crazy cat lady.

She handed him her ticket, which was torn and scratched in some places but still eligible for admission, and the ticket was paid for her and her seven cats. The attendant counted the cats and noted their color; a brown one, a black one, a white one, a purple one, one with a red and white striped hat, one with a fiddle, and one wearing boots. He counted seven. He tore the ticket in half and gave one piece back to the lady, the other being put in a box next to the cart door. The crazy cat lady, whose faces could not be seen under her hair, waltzed on into the cart while her cats followed. The attendant counted them all again just to double check. Yep, seven cats.

It looked like the other carts were done seating passengers. The train should leave soon.

Suddenly, the ice cat jumped onto the cheese man's head and began clawing at his eyes. The man screamed as cheese shavings flew off of his face. After a few good swipes, the cat leapt off of the man's head and dove into the train cart, being sure that he was out of the shark and science cat's sight. While the man was seething with pain, the trained roared and the cart doors closed. The attendant realized this and watched, as best as he could through his damaged face, the trained move on without him.

"Wait! I didn't get on!" the cheese man shouted before clutching his face reflexively.

The commotion of the attack didn't reach the perspective of the passengers, as it happened out of their sight and sound was drowned out by the roar of the train. The only thing that stirred attention was the entrance of the crazy cat lady, and how science cat responded to the line of felines walking in.

"…that one has an eye for me," he said to land shark, who grunted disgustingly in response.

"…and then I said, 'That was a close shave'!" Finn said.

The table erupted in laughter, Monty pounding the table in a show of enthusiastic hilarity.

For the past hour, Finn and Jake had been enjoying their obligatory lunch with the other miners. For the most part, the two were talking about their adventures, although Finn was avoiding the ones that involved Princess Bubblegum. It was hard to talk and listen at the same time as they were eating, the food was very good. Finn had never tried teriyaki chicken, but after this meal, he might never go back.

"Hahaha! Oh man, that was just bad!" Monty exclaimed.

"Hey, it was a spur of the moment," Finn said in defense, "It was the first thing that came to mind when I was watching the Ice King get beaten up like that."

"No it wasn't," Jake said, "You told me on the way back to park that you were gonna make that joke after it was over. Even then, I told you it was bad."

"Okay, I couldn't resist. I couldn't think of anything else witty to say," Finn admitted.

"Yeah, we've all had those moments," Ed said, finishing up the rest of his beef and broccoli dish.

Finn looked at his plate and poked at some rice with his chopsticks, the plate was almost empty and he was getting full. He was also running out of topics to discuss. It was only a matter of time before he and Jake had to resume their adventure. Not like he was sad about it, they had to go to the Dancing Kingdom as soon as possible, but he wanted to learn a bit more about the people who fed him.

"So guys, if Sole Mines is out of business, why are you still here?" he asked.

"Ed already told you about our eviction, right?" Cindy replied.

"Oh, yeah. I forgot." Finn then remembered meeting Ed back in the mines, only he never found out what Ed was doing in the mines in the first place. "Hey Ed."

"Mhm?" Ed hummed through a mouth full of food.

"What were you doing in the mines? I thought you didn't work anymore."

Ed swallowed. "Well, the mines are dry, definitely, but some people still believe that there may be hidden shoe ores somewhere in the mine. That's what I was doing, looking through the mines for any possibility of rare shoes."

"A discovery like that could potentially turn around the economy of the Shoe Kingdom," Monty said as Finn stuff another piece of chicken in his mouth, "Too bad he hasn't succeeded yet."

"No one has told me to stop yet," Ed beamed.

"We did, after you almost got crushed by that cave-in," Cindy pointed out.

Finn and Jake were reminded about the trap back in the mines. They had totally forgotten about it during lunch because they were busy eating and talking, and talking while eating.

"Oh yeah, guys," Finn fumbled before swallowing, "Has anyone been setting up traps in the mines?"

"Traps?" Monty said, catching the attention of the entire table.

"Yeah, we were wandering in the mines," Jake explained, "And then Finn trips a wire and almost gets smashed!"

The table paused. Such an incident had never occurred before and they were shocked to learn that there were traps in the mines they were still searching through.

"This is the first I've heard of such a thing," Monty said, "The only people who have ever been in the mines were us three."

"So that means…" Finn said, finger on his chin.

"Someone must be sneaking into the mines and setting up traps," Cindy said, cutting Finn off.

"But why? There's nothing left in those mines," Ed said, "Unless whoever they are found a secret stock of precious shoes."

Everyone at the table sat silently, processing the possibility that some random cave dweller may have, in fact, found a secret shaft.

"Maybe they did," Monty said, getting excited, "We should all go check it out!"

The three of them agreed at this, save for Cindy, who merely nodded.

"Hey, uh, guys? We want to help too," Finn said, catching Jake's attention.

"Well, sure," Ed said, "You can beat up the interloper if we find him, and maybe you can find the secret shaft for us."

"Finn, wait," Jake said, "Didn't you say we can't waste our time and we have to get to the Dancing Kingdom as soon as possible?"

"Jake, helping people is never a waste of time," Finn explained, "I want to help the Shoe Kingdom get out of its money problems by doing whatever I can, and that is adventuring."

"Oh, what a wonderful person you are, Finn," Ed said, clapping his hands, "You guys can get started exploring the mines with clearance. We'll clean up here."

"Uh, guys," Cindy chimed, "Are you sure it's safe to leave these two alone in the mines? They don't even know the basics of miner's safety protocols."

"It's just 'keep your hard hat on at all times'," Monty explained, "They're not going to do any actual mining."

"Maybe they should," Ed commented, "Cindy, show them the warehouse and give them pickaxes. We need all the help we can get. Especially if it's free," he said with a wink.

"…" Cindy sighed, "Fine. You two, come with me."

Behind the house was a door that led to the warehouse Ed was talking about. The room was rather dusty and dimly lit with a stale air, the result of years of dirt and rust sitting around doing nothing. It was filled with tools and machinery the miners used to excavate the caves. From regular pickaxes and shovels, to drilling machines and real dynamite, it was an amazing sight for a young mind like Finn.

"Okay guys, here are your hard hats and picks," Cindy said, giving the two their supplies.

"Cool. A pickaxe once held by a sweaty, dirty man slaving over his girlfriends' crazy obsession of shoes," Jake explained rather unnecessarily.

Cindy's face turned dark and frightening again, except her head was tilted upward and the lighting was suspiciously amplifying the effect, and her voice resonated like that of a demon, "It's not craze!"

"Uh, I meant 'fascination'!" Jake took back.

"Yes, I guess you could call it that," Cindy said, returning her face to normal, "You guys go on ahead to the mines. I've got to go to the little girl's room." And then Cindy headed for the door, leaving Finn and Jake alone.

Finn took a second look around the room, noting the absurd shapes of some of the tools used for mining.

"So, the miners used this stuff to dig up the shoes. Cool…" Finn commented.

"Hey look. That tool looks like a carrot," Jake said, pointing to a jackhammer.

"Hey, look over here," Finn said, walking to a pile of signs. "'Hard Hat Area'," he read.

He lifted the sign to see the other ones underneath. The next one was a white one that read, 'Read this sign'. He then sifted through more signs to read them, most of them repeating the same thing, until he came upon the last one of the pile, which was a red square sign that read 'Danger! Collapsible Cavern! Do Not Enter!' and had a picture of a skull on it.

"Hey, this is the same one that was above that tunnel that almost crushed you," Jake noticed.

"There was a sign?" Finn asked.

"Yeah, I noticed it when the gnome was dragging us out."

Finn looked at the sign while remembering his brush with death. If they had only noticed the sign earlier, they could've avoided tripping the trap. Although, it was odd that someone would set up a trap where there was supposedly the hazard of collapsing tunnels.

And then, it hit him.

"Wait a minute, who'd put the trap in a danger zone?" Finn said.

"What do you mean?" Jake asked.

"Like, why would someone risk setting up the trap in a tunnel where the ceiling could fall any moment?" Finn stated, "That doesn't make sense…unless…"

Slowly, Finn's deduction dawned on the two.

"…the secret shaft was beyond that tunnel, and the sign was posted there to keep people from looking."

Jake gasped, "And the trap was set up just in case someone ignored the sign!"

"Let's go dig through that tunnel Jake!" Finn said, holding up his pickaxe, "The fate of the Shoe Kingdom depends on us!"

"But Finn, these wimpy little axes aren't going to get us through that collapsed tunnel," Jake said, waving the tool, "We're gonna need something a bit stronger."

"Don't worry, Jake," he said, turning around to see the entire room, "we just so happen to be in a room full of digging stuff. There has to be something stronger around here, like a drill or something."

While the boy and dog began looking around the room, a person had been listening to their conversion from behind the door. His or her concern grew as he or she listened, realizing the mistake he or she made. The two were going to look through the mines looking for the secret shaft, and with their deduction, they would surely find it.

'I can't allow them to do that,' he or she thought. 'I can't let them discover the secret shaft.'

The person stepped away from the door and hurried over to the mines. He or she had some more traps to set up, and he or she had to make some preparations in case the secret shaft is found. There was no way he or she would allow the secret to be revealed, they would kill before the mysterious person of an ambiguous gender would let that happen…

It's happened before.

"Okay, where would a culprit hide in the mines?" Finn asked.

"Probably somewhere near the secret shaft," Jake said.

Finn and Jake decided to bring many tools from the tool shed, such as shovels and a drill and even doohickeys they didn't know how to use. Jake was easily able to carry the stuff with his enlarged hands but it was still heavy, so he dumped it all in a nearby mine cart when they entered the tunnel. Right now, they were in the main mineshaft discussing their plan to catch the trap-setting culprit.

"So, if we find the secret shaft, we find the culprit," Finn said.

"And the secret shaft is probably beyond the tunnel with trap in it," Jake stated.

"Do you remember which tunnel it was?" Finn asked.

"Err, I think it was the one on the far left," he said, pointing to the tunnel nearest to the massive pile of shoes.

"Let's go!" Finn excitedly said.

The two ran into the tunnel, retracing their steps while looking for the big red sign. They came upon a fork in the tunnels, one of them led to the collapsed cavern.

Only problem is, they couldn't find the sign.

"Jake, are you sure there was a sign there?" Finn asked.

"Of course I am! I distinctly remember it while we were leaving the mines," Jake said, pointing to his head, "I'd never forget a big red sign with a skull on it."

"Hmm."

"…I just don't remember which tunnel it was."

Neither Finn nor Jake could remember which cavern was the one rigged with the trap. One tunnel was dark while the other was lined with rails. But Finn was sure that it had to be the darkened tunnel, but he couldn't shake the feeling that something was off, especially if there was supposed to be a hazard sign.

"Let's take the left one," Finn said, "If it's not that one, we can check the next tunnel."

"Good idea."

As the two entered the tunnel, a mysterious figure from the shaft's entrance watched them and eyed the cart full of their tools.

"Yep, this is the one," Finn said, patting the rock walls that almost crushed him.

"There's no way our pickaxes can dig through that rock," Jake said, tapping the wall with his pick.

"That's why I brought all of those tools. Let's go back and get a drill," Finn said.

Suddenly, the sound of metal squealing resonated through the mines. Finn and Jake heard this coming from the tunnel across them.

"Huh, are Ed and Monty here?" Jake asked.

"Let's go check, maybe they brought more tools."

When the two left the collapsed tunnel, they noticed that their cart carrying their tools had disappeared.

"Our tools!" Finn gasped.

The sound of a mine cart moving caught Finn's ear, looking to the tunnel to his right.

"The sound is coming from over there. Someone's taking our tools!" Jake said.

"Maybe it's the culprit!" Finn said as the boy and dog ran into the tunnel.

At the sound of their footprints, the squealing of metal quickened. The culprit could hear them coming and was pushing the cart as hard as he or she could.

"Stop!" Finn yelled, his echo resounding through the tunnel.

The two ran as fast as they could and yet they still could not catch up to the culprit, unable to see him or her much less the cart. The tunnel was curving leftward as Finn and Jake continued running down the rails until eventually the sound of the squealing metal ceased.

"You hear that? He or she must've stopped," Finn said.

The two eventually reached an opening in the tunnel which led them into another mineshaft like the one by the main entrance except this room was more linear. Ladders and pulley systems lined the walls as well as light bulbs that were recently lit. Only thing that was missing was the culprit who dragged their minecart to the center of the room.

"Where'd he, or she, go?" Finn asked.

"He or she couldn't have gotten far," Jake exclaimed as they looked around the room.

The sound of rocks crackling resonated in the room. Finn and Jake looked around for the source of the sound, as a huge boulder fell from the ceiling. A loud boom echoed in the cave, surprising the heroes as they turned around and saw that the boulder was blocking the exit. The cave still trembled after the boulder landed and Finn and Jake comprehended the boulder before them.

Suddenly, a loud spark sounded off and lights were dimming quickly, eventually the entire cavern plummeted into total darkness.

"Wah! It was a trap!" Finn exclaimed.

"I can't see anything!" Jake yelled.

Finn felt around the room to hold on to so that he wouldn't trip over anything. But his senses were dummied without his sight as he began to get dizzy from the darkness. Thinking quickly, he remembered he packed some matches in his bag. He pulled off his backpack, an instinctive thing he could do without light, and reached into it, feeling around for a small box. He found it and, in his mind, envisioned the box as he opened it and pulled out a matchstick. He felt for the lighter tip and the rough side of the box to strike it on. He found both and proceeded to ignite the match, lighting up a small portion of the cave.

"Phew, light," Jake said, "Good thing you packed matches."

"A hero is always prepared," Finn said.

"But an itty bitty matchstick won't help us in the long run, and we don't have a lot of matches."

Finn looked around, holding the matchstick like a little torch, and squinted into the darkness with what little light there was. He noticed a pile of shoes in the corner and some of them were glistening in the light of the match. He walked over to the pile, watching his steps, and his eyes fell on some glass shoes that got scratched up while they were being mined. Finn had an idea and picked up one of the shoes and placed the match within the shoes cavity. As a result, the glass amplified the light and illuminated the cave better than the matchstick could by itself.

"Wow. Neat thinking, Finn," Jake complimented.

"Thanks. At least we have a sort of flashlight now."

Jake looked around with the new light on and saw a generator across the room. He ran to it and observed it. The power was on, but its cable was cut. Very suspicious.

"Somebody cut the power here," Jake said, holding the clipped cable.

"We have to start looking for the culprit," Finn said, "Then punch his socks off!"

"Well, we can't go back," Jake looked at the boulder blocking the path.

He looked around and noticed that the entire room was a dead end.

"…and we're stuck here."

"But Jake, we have an entire cart full of junk to help us," Finn said, directing him to the cart full of tools they towed in.

Jake walked over to it and picked up a giant drill, frowning when he saw the power cord hanging from it.

"Aw man, it's an electric drill. And the generator's cable was cut."

Finn placed a hand on his chin.

"I have an idea."

A person walked through a tunnel, holding a flashlight. He or she was noting the routes the tunnel bored through and noted the few hidden routes that would lead to the secret shaft. Finn and Jake have been dealt with. The others would inevitably start looking for them.

The sound of rocks getting chewed up bought his or her attention, looking back to see a small hole in the wall with bits of pebbles coming through it. The hole was growing bigger and bigger. Someone was drilling through it.

"I see a light!" a voice on the other side said aloud. It sounded like that boy.

This wasn't good, he or she thought as the person immediately ran down the tunnels. If they followed the tunnel, they would surely find the shaft. There was no time to lose.

The rock wall fell apart, submitting to the dominating power of the drill. Finn and Jake, with a giant drill in his hand, walked over the rubble and observed the next tunnel they were in.

"Huh, no light," Finn said, "but I was sure I saw a light here."

"Maybe you're just imagining things?" Jake suggested, unwinding his arm. "At least we're out of that shaft."

"Which way should we go, now?" Finn asked.

"Hmm…"

Before they said another word, the tunnel started to shake. Jake got scared, worried that their drilling may have caused another cave-in.

"AHHH! Is the cave coming down?" Jake worriedly exclaimed.

Finn looked to the left were the tunnel's shaking was concentrated. "I don't think that's the cave…"

The rumbling grew bigger, and there was a voice in the back of their heads that told them to run. They weren't sure why they had this feeling, until the source of the rumbling came into view as a giant boulder tumbling towards them.

"AAAHHHHH!" they yelled as they back and started running, Jake still holding on to the giant drill.

"Isn't this copyright infringement?" Finn yelled as he ran over the rails.

"No! It's a parody!" Jake answered.

A pile of rocks came into view of the tunnel. Finn and Jake jumped over it while it crumbled under the boulder behind them. A cart on the rails came into view then, Finn and Jake almost crashing into it. The cart was obliterated by the boulder but it had yet to stop. It did slow it down for a bit.

"Finn! Up ahead!" Jake yelled.

It was the last thing they wanted to see. Through the small gaps the light was slipping through, Finn and Jake could see a part of the tunnel caved in. It was a dead end.

"What do we do?"

Finn had to think quickly. "I got an idea! Wind up your body!"

As they halted at the dead end, Jake used his powers and started curling up his body very quickly. Whatever Finn was planning, it better work, for their sake.

"Grab that drill! And prepare to bash that boulder!" Finn shouted.

The boulder was almost there. No second thoughts. This plan better work.

Finn grabbed Jake from behind and pushed with all his force as Jake uncoiled at an intense speed, the drill spinning insanely fast. The boulder and the drill collided, the drill piercing the boulder as the weight pushed against the two. If the boulder didn't shatter before Jake was completely unwinded, the boulder would crush them.

Two incredible forces pushing against each other, only one will fold under the superior force.

And then, like a house of cards, the boulder shattered into pieces, giving in to the teamwork of Finn and Jake. They propelled themselves above the rubble as an effect of force as Jake's spinning was starting to slow down. Eventually, Jake stopped and released the drill, teetering from dizziness.

"Uh…are we dead?" he asked.

"No man. We survived!" Finn said, raising his fists into the air. He turned around and pointed at the rubble, "Ha! Stupid boulder! Thought you could pull an Indy on us, huh?"

"Finn!"

"What? 'Indy' isn't copyrighted, is it?" he asked.

"Uh, I don't know. But back to the story," Jake said, shaking his head from the dizziness, "I'm willing to bet that this boulder was a trap."

"Maybe it was the culprit?"

"Definitely. We should go up the tunnel and investigate."

"Not like we could go anywhere else," Finn stated, "Remember? Our only exit has been blocked."

"All the more reason to go up this tunnel. Let's go man," Jake said, leading the way.

"We should be careful of any more traps, though," Finn remarked.

Although in his head, he was glad there were traps lacing the mines. It made the mines more exciting, and more like a dungeon.

Like Finn said, they had to be wary of any more traps. That precaution never held more truth as the two explored the mines. The first trap they encountered triggered a wall of fire spouting at them, but their drill managed to allow them through the fierce flames. The next trap was a spike pit and Finn almost fell in, but Jake managed to nullify the trap with his powers by stretching over it. The further they spelunked into the mines, the deadlier the traps got. They must've been getting close.

"You see how I killed that giant cave worm?" Finn said happily.

"Yep, sliced it cleanly in half," Jake said, "But you would've been done for if it weren't for me and my drill."

"Maybe," Finn admitted, "You know, that drill is so awesome. We should ask Ed if we can keep it."

"Yeah. Having a drill around, we can do anything!" Jake laughed.

"Even pierce the heavens!"

The two walked for a while, having activated no traps for the past few minutes. It was rather odd, as they had been defying danger around every corner so far, that a peaceful walk seemed out of place now. However, the two still kept their guard up. A trap could spring at any moment.

"Hey look, there's another shaft up ahead," Jake said, pointing to an exit.

The two paced quickly into the shaft. It led to a large room whose walls glittered sporadically. They couldn't see much of the room with what little light they brought, until it was brought to Finn's attention that the matchstick in the glass shoe was beginning to burn out.

"Oh cram! Our lights almost out," Finn exclaimed, "Jake, hold this while I get another match."

Jake held onto the glass footwear while Finn brought out a matchbox. He lit up one of the matches he pulled out just before the light in the shoe burnt out. With the match lit, he retrieved the glass shoe and placed the light inside, revealing the rest of the room. What Finn and Jake saw astonished and stunned them with awe.

The entirety of the room's walls was different shades of green with sparkling quartz stone dotting the rock. There were huge piles of shoes lining the wall, but the shoes themselves were amazingly beautiful. They glistened and shined like gold and gems, as that's what they were made of. Golden shoes, ruby slippers, pearl shoes, even shoes of a combination of priceless minerals. It was like a secret treasure room they had stumbled upon.

They found the secret shaft.

"Jake, I think this is the secret shaft Ed was looking for," Finn said, walking towards the piles.

Jake stretched his arm and grabbed a shoe that was the shiniest of a pile. "Whoa!" he said in amazement, "These shoes are studded with diamonds and gems!"

Finn looked at a pile of pink shoes glittering in the light. He grabbed a pair of pink shoes forged from a priceless mineral lined with diamonds and gold lining.

"You think…maybe…Bubblegum would like one of these?" he asked shyly.

"Dude," Jake, with a snarky look, said, "If you gave her those shoes, she would marry you!"

Finn blushed at the thought, avoiding the memory that she was already marrying someone else.

"Eh, heh heh."

"Nah, you should save those shoes for your wedding and give her those instead of a ring," Jake taunted.

Finn blushed even harder, not listening to Jake but instead fantasizing his proposal to Bubblegum. "Or maybe she'll make me her boyfriend?"

"What?"

"Err, I mean, forget what I said!" Finn exclaimed, putting the shoes back with a very red face, "Forget I asked."

The two were oblivious to the sound of steps coming from the tunnel. It was until the steps had entered the mineshaft did they hear someone walk in. Finn and Jake turned around to see the person in the mineshaft only to see Cindy standing there.

"Cindy!" they said.

"Cindy! Look! We found the secret shaft!" Finn exclaimed.

"I know," she responded with an uninterested voice.

"These shoes should help save the Shoe Kingdom!" Jake said.

"No they won't."

"Huh? But just look at these shoes!" Finn said, grabbing a pair from the pile, "This is the kind of stuff you'd find in treasure chests!"

Cindy did not move or change expression.

"Cindy?"

Cindy sighed. "I was hoping you guys wouldn't find this shaft."

"Huh, what's that supposed to mean?" Jake asked.

"I'm sorry, but now that you have discovered the secret shaft…" Cindy said as she brought a weapon out from behind her, "…I cannot let you leave," the machine whirred and roared as she revved it, the blades spinning wildly as they were set aflame, "ALIVE!"

She dashed towards the heroes with a chainsaw set aflame, a mad ambition on her face that screamed blood thirst. Finn and Jake ducked to avoid the spinning blades and split. This woman had every intention of killing them.

"AHH!" Finn yelled, "Wait! You are the culprit who set those traps?"

Cindy didn't answer, she eyed him, then dashed at him with the machine blaring with power. Finn avoided the swing just barely, but tripped on the floor over a lump of dirt in the ground. Cindy was about to swing downward at the helpless boy when Jake intervened.

"Finn!" Jake yelled as he launched the drill at her.

Cindy retaliated by swinging the blade at the large metal, sparks flying as the blades were cutting away at the drill. Finn wasted no time and propped himself back up, away from the fireworks. Finn watched as the drill and chainsaw assaulted each other. Only one weapon was going to win this standoff.

After a while, the screeching metal stopped and a large object fell to the ground with a thud. Jake looked at his drill and stared at the eyesore of a wound the drill had. The drill had been cut in half and rendered useless. The flaming chainsaw was still good as new.

Finn unsheathed his sword and attempted to swing at the girl. Cindy saw him coming and counter by revving the chainsaw and swinging it at him. The two blades collided and let loose a shower of sparks all over the place. Finn struggled to push the chainsaw back while enduring the onslaught of hot metal on his skin. After a few seconds, Finn pulled away and jumped backwards, Cindy eyeing him angrily. Finn looked at his sword and gasped.

There was a huge notch in the blade from where it collided with the chainsaw. The mineral was still seething with heat, emitting a nauseating smoke. The fact that the chainsaw was able to damage his sword, made of pure gold, meant that regular weapons wouldn't last in a standoff with her chainsaw.

This was bad.

"RUN!" Finn yelled.

Jake abandoned the drill and bolted to the exit, following Finn as they ran. The sound of the engine revving followed them, looking back to see the crazed woman determined to kill them.

"She really is crazy!" Jake yelled.

Up ahead, there was a fork in the tunnel, one of which was blocked by crumbled rocks. The odd thing was, Finn swore they came into the shaft from that direction. But it looks like they have no choice but to take the right tunnel to deter the crazed chainsaw maiden.

They ran into the tunnel sloped upwards, determined to find an exit where they could take the fight to. The sound of screeching metal echoed in the tunnel. It wasn't Cindy, they thought, because the sound was coming from ahead of the tunnel. From the darkness emerged a cart filled with red sticks, tumbling down the tunnel without rails, causing the wheels to emit sparks. Finn and Jake just barely dodged the tumbling cart, looking back to see if it would hit Cindy. She evaded it to, only she also used her flaming weapon to light the sticks in the cart. It was dynamite.

A loud boom emanated throughout the mines, the rumbling could be felt from outside of the mines. Inside, the explosion caused the tunnel to start caving in on Finn and Jake. They had to hurry.

"We gotta get out of here! The cave is giving away!" Jake yelled.

"What about Cindy?" Finn said.

"The one trying to kill us? Forget about her! We have to worry about ourselves!"

An opening up ahead came into sight. They ran as fast as they could, stones and boulders falling left and right. The tunnel would cave in at any second.

The two leapt faithfully into the light at the other end, the rocks piling up behind them and sealing the entrance. The stumbled as they landed, watching the rubble pile up as the trembling of the cave slowed down to a stop. The tremors had ceased. Cindy did not make it.

"…Cindy…" Finn said sadly.

Even though she tried to kill them for discovering the secret shaft, Finn would never wish death upon another person. Sure, they were safe now, but Finn wanted to plead with her if she could turn in the treasure and become good. He wouldn't resort to death as an answer unless there was absolutely nothing else he could do to convince her otherwise.

"…we should go and tell Ed and Monty what happened," Jake said, turning around.

"…yeah. We should…"

Suddenly, the sound of crumbling rock was heard behind them. They looked to see something glowing under the rubble, followed by pebbles sliding downward. From the wall of rubble emerged a spinning blade on fire. There was simply no way, they thought, that she could've survived that.

The rocks fell apart as Cindy emerged from the rubble with small bruises. Finn and Jake took a moment to absorb the scene before running off in the other direction. As long as Cindy had that chainsaw, she was unstoppable.

"We gotta figure out a way to incapacitate her!" Finn said as they ran.

"Dude, she… wait. 'Incapacitate'? Have you been reading?" Jake asked, then shook his head to get serious, "She has a laser guided flaming chainsaw. That's a top-of-the-shelf weapon. How can we beat that?"

"We have to figure out a way. We just have to!"

The two ran into another cavern, this time littered with stalagmites and stalactites and the sound of water running could be heard. There was no sign of miner activity here, apparently the miners left this place untouched as there weren't any shoes to mine here.

"I have an idea," Finn said, the sound of the chainsaws coming closer, "Hide."

Cindy rushed into the cavern, waving her flaming weapon, as she looked around the room for the two heroes. This room was a dead end, she thought. She knew this because she had fully explored the mines after the discovery of the treasure filled secret shaft. The only rarity in this part of the mines was the shoes hidden under water.

"Come out, Finn and Jake," she said into the darkness, "You aren't leaving this place alive, so just give up!"

"Cindy!" Finn said, his voice bouncing off the cavern walls, "Answer us a few questions at least. You were the one who set those traps, did you?"

"Yeah, so?" Cindy walked around, investigating the cave.

"Why? Why did you set up those traps?"

"To keep people from finding the secret shaft."

"Why do you want to keep it a secret so badly?" this time, Jake asked, his location hidden by the echoes of his voice.

"Because it is a gold mine that will make me rich. With such riches, I can buy the Shoe Kingdom and become the new royalty," Cindy said as she approached a stalagmite.

She revved the engine and swung at the rock, slicing cleanly through it. The rock fell to the side, revealing no one behind it.

"If you are so rich, why are you still around the mines?" Finn asked, undeterred by the sound of the chainsaw cutting apart the rock.

"I've been waiting for the owner of the mines to return. I contacted him and offered a huge sum for ownership of the mines," she answered as she moved to a different rock to look through, "Once the mines are mine, I will reveal the location of the secret shaft, sell the priceless shoes, and become filthy rich!"

"And the traps. Did you use them on other people?" Jake asked.

Cindy smiled. "Yeah, I did."

"You're a monster!"

"A rich monster, thank you," she retorted, "I had no choice but to murder those workers before I would let the secret mineshaft be revealed. Money is the most important thing in my life, right next to shoes."

She spotted Finn's shadow behind a stalagmite. She quietly walked towards it, keeping the engine of her weapon humming lowly. When she got close enough, she gripped the spinning blades tightly and revved the engine, ready to swing.

"Time to die."

The rock cut cleanly in half, the other half falling to the side with a thud. She looked over the slightly melted rock expecting a decapitated kid, but instead saw nothing hiding behind it. However, the shadow of the boy's hat was still being casted. She looked to her left in the opposite direction of the shadow, only to see his dog, Jake, ears pointed upwards to mimic the hats shadow with the illuminated shoe behind him.

"Hi," he waved.

Finn shouted as he ambushed Cindy, "YAHHH!"

Cindy turned around and saw an object swiftly thrown at her. She reacted by shielding with the flaming edge of her weapon, slicing the object in half. The contents of the object, a can of peanut butter, spilled all over her dress and the floor, gooey from the heat of the blade. Cindy took a moment to look at herself. The peanut butter had smeared all over her skirt and on her shoes. Seeing the ruined shoes, she dropped her chainsaw and kneeled down quickly, attempting to clean them before the stains became permanent.

"Gah! Not my shoes!" she shouted disdainfully, taking off her shoes and bringing out a cloth.

Finn ran towards her and delivered a fierce kick to her grounded weapon, knocking it yards away and into the water. The weapon sizzled upon entry, rendering it useless.

"Now Jake!" Finn yelled.

Jake launched himself at the woman, arms elongated, and tackled her to the ground. She struggled but was unable to keep him wrapping his limbs around her, constricting her arms and legs.

"I got her!" Jake exclaimed.

"Unhand me, mutt!" she commanded as she struggled, "Do you know how hard it is to wash stains out of silk? It's nearly impossible! I must scrub my shoes before the stains solidify!"

"Wow, even when she's been captured, all she can think about is her shoes," Finn said as Jake stood up, still binding Cindy.

"Ha ha, you psychopathic peanut butter flavored shoe fanatic," Jake taunted as Finn walked into the water to fetch the weapon.

He picked it up and observed it. It was yellow and had a canister for the fuel on the outside. It had two handles and several buttons on one side. Oddly, the blade for the chainsaw was gone, just a long gap into the machine. Finn curiously pressed a button and a string of blades whipped out of the weapon, forming the shape of a chainsaw.

"Don't play with that!" Cindy yelled, "That thing costs more than your life!"

"What is this thing anyway?" he asked, turning around.

Cindy looked away, "Hmph!" She didn't feel like answering, but she didn't have much of a future anyway. She let herself get caught by a boy and his dog, "It's an 'All Purpose Blaze Blade'. I used it to set up the traps here and drill my way around the cave."

"Drill?" Finn repeated.

He looked at the control panel of the weapon and noted a small picture of a drill above a button. He pressed it and the blades shaping the chainsaw reassembled themselves into a spiral. Finn awed at the transformation, forgetting momentarily about their captive.

"You can play with it later, Finn," Jake said, "We gotta go turn in Cindy."

"Oh, right."

Finn pulled a line from the weapon, spurring the engine until the blades caught on fire. The drill rotated slowly as Finn walked up to a wall.

"Let's drill our way out!" Finn said excitedly as he drove the weapon into the rock.

"That's not a toy!" Cindy shouted.

"Let him have his fun," Jake said, watching the rock wall tear apart.

After Finn and Jake left the mines, Ed and Monty contacted the police of the Shoe Kingdom. They arrived on cars that had giant walking boots instead of wheels, oddly. Finn and Jake told them what had happened and Cindy's crime, as well as the secret shaft hidden in the mine. Ed went into the mine to investigate, noting Finn's path he took back out. As the police cuffed Cindy and led her towards the car, she turned to them and spoke.

"You know, I had been waiting months for the owner to return," she said, the police men still keeping a tight grip, "If only he had returned earlier, I could've gotten away with it all."

"Sorry, Cindy. But sometimes, the universe works against you," Monty said.

Cindy let out a small scoff as she was escorted into the police unit. Monty then turned to Finn and Jake.

"I still can't believe it was her this whole time," Monty expressed his disbelief, "I mean, she was crazy about them shoes, but to go this far?"

"I know crazier people," Finn humored, "…well, one anyway."

"But still, she actually killed people," Monty exclaimed, "I don't know what to say."

"You can say 'I should've known better!'" Jake said, imitating an old man while shaking his fist, "It might make you feel better about things."

"But, other than her obsession with shoes, there weren't any other hints I could catch."

While they were talking, Ed was running out of the mines holding a pair of pink glittering shoes, the same ones Finn had when they discovered the shaft.

"It's true! They found it! The secret shoe ore!" Ed said as he stopped in front of them, "And these are much rarer than we thought!"

"Whoa…" Monty said as he took the shoes, "Ruby glass gem, with diamond studs and gold laces. No way can this be natural!"

"It's true! The secret ore is full of valuables like those!" Ed said as he felt like dancing.

"These shoes have the potential to purge the kingdom of its economy!" Monty said, excitingly holding the shoes upward in praise, "The Shoe Kingdom is saved!"

Finn watched the two dance and felt happy about himself. Not only did he put a psychotic criminal to jail, but he also saved an entire kingdom through it. He did a massive favor for them, and he felt good about it.

"You know, man," Jake said, "That was some quick thinking back there. When did you get so smart?"

"Uh, I don't know, actually. It all just came to me in the form of a hunch, or something," Finn shrugged.

Finn honestly didn't know where the ideas came from. The peanut butter, the drill, the glass shoe flashlight, he normally wouldn't have thought of all of those things under normal circumstances. They spawned merely as ideas and Finn was never sure if they would work, but they did and they were still alive thanks to him.

"Well, your hunch saved our butts back there," Jake put a hand on his shoulder, "You're becoming a better hero every day."

"Heh, yeah…" Finn replied modestly.

"Hey Finn," Ed said to them, stopping his dance, "We want to thank you so much for doing all of this for us."

"It's no problem. We're adventurers, we do this kind of stuff all the time," Finn said.

"But we want to thank you somehow," Monty, who also stopped dancing, said, "We can let you have one of our special shoes for free."

"We don't need anything, really."

"Are you sure? We have a wide selection of shoes, like speed shoes, fire shoes, mountain climbing shoes, gliding shoes…"

As Finn rambled on, he looked at the pink shoes he was holding and thought to himself.

"…actually, I'd like the ones you're holding."

"Huh?" Monty and Ed looked at the pink pair of shoes, "You want these shoes?"

"Yeah."

"These pink shoes?"

"Yeah," Finn said with more emphasis.

"These girly ones?"

"Is there a problem with the shoes I want?"

"No, not really," Monty and Ed looked at each other, "In fact, we are totally fine if you like this kind of stuff."

Monty gave Finn the shoes. Finn received them before it hit him just what exactly the implications were. He blushed at the realization.

"Wait. This isn't for me!" Finn said in his defense, "I want to give these to someone!"

"Oh…" Monty said, he and Ed abandoning their original thought, "Sorry."

"Heh, I think I know who that 'someone' is," Jake said as he elbowed Finn.

"That's personal!" Finn shot back.

Jake laughed as Finn took his backpack off and put the shoes inside for safe keeping.

"So, what are you guys going to do?" Ed asked.

"We're on an adventure to the Dancing Kingdom," Jake said, "We're trying to get there in less than a month."

"Less than a month?" Monty asked, "That's a pretty difficult task. You shouldn't be wasting your time here."

"Helping people isn't a waste of time," Finn said, "And I'm glad I was able to help you guys get your kingdom back together."

"We still can't thank you enough for what you have done for us," Ed said, "I wish you luck on your adventure."

Finn climbed Jake as he grew in size, getting ready to leave.

"Hey, do you guys have a blacksmith?" Finn asked.

"Yes, but our blacksmiths only work on shoes," Monty answered, "They're what we call 'hardcore cobblers'."

"Oh, that's okay. Just asking," Finn said as Jake started walking.

"Thanks again Finn and Jake!" Ed shouted.

"The Shoe Kingdom will always remember you!" Monty exclaimed.

Finn waved back at them until Jake walked a far enough distance that they couldn't be seen. Only a small piece of the mines could be seen from their view. Finn turned back around and unsheathed his sword, looking at the gaping scar it had. He scowled, remembering his decision to have it fixed by a blacksmith earlier. The blade definitely needed to be repaired now.

"Man, my sword got all jacked up back there," Finn stated.

"Gold isn't exactly the same as metal," Jake said, "It's just a heck of a lot pricier."

"I can't use this sword now. I have to get it fixed," Finn said as he sheathed it, "First thing we do when we get to a town, we find a blacksmith."

"Heh, now you're prioritizing," Jake commented.

"It's okay, though. I got a different weapon I can use."

"What's that?" Jake said as he turned his head around.

Finn was holding the chainsaw Cindy had earlier, only it was now in sword mode, it flames glowing fiercely as Finn wielded it.

"Whoa! You kept it?" Jake asked.

"I'm just using this as a substitute until my sword is fixed," Finn said, shutting off the weapon and putting it in his bag, "Cindy owes me, you know?"

"Yeah, I guess she does," Jake said, "Oh! That reminds me, we should get back to our lesson about priorities."

"I don't see why not?" Finn said.

"Okay, last time, we were talking about weapons," Jake said, Finn eagerly listening, "I already told you almost everything about the priorities for weapons, so we'll move on to health."

"Ha, ok."

"There are many dangerous things in the world you can't fight with swords. Illness being one of them. So note the health precautions on your adventure."

"I'm listening."

"Before you do your business in the open, look around for some large leaves, except for the poisonous ones. I don't want to go into detail about the monster of a rash you get if you don't pay attention…"

~End of Chapter 4~

I let this chapter become longer than it needed to be. Oh well. I hope you enjoyed it. And I understand if you didn't like it so much. There are some errors and irregularities here…

We get to see some more of Matthew here, and we met land shark's family. How cute. But what is up with that ice cat? You'll find out soon.

Not much of a cliffhanger this time, but you still get a sneak peek.

Next chapter: Fight for your Life, at the Center of the Earth!

"It's a huge skeleton!"

"They just…disappeared."

"What have you done to my friend?"

"Welcome to Creep Underworld!"

"You have no choice! Fight, or Die!"

"I can't keep going…"

"Your fate rests in the hands of our overlord."

"You really are a creep!"

"This is it…I'm going to die."

"The decision is final!"

"Finn! Jake! I've missed you!"

Chapter 6 will be uploaded at LandofOoo dot com before this site gets it, so go check out the forum and sign up while you're at it! But don't forget to review the story here. It needs to look good for the readers to see.

See you next time!