AN: After weeks of rotting my mind with KSSU, Return to Dreamland, a Little of Mass Attack, Kirby fanfiction, fanart and awesome music remixes AND drawing Kirby crap like there's no tomorrow, I've decided to finally force my lazy ass into writing this. I was planning on making an Epic Mickey one first, but that failed, and now here I am. Enjoy
Warning: There might be blood and gore, but nothing mayor so it's alright.
Disclaimer: The Kirby series and all of its characters belong to Nintendo and HAL Laboratories….which pretty much leaves me with NOTHING.
It's my first try at Kirby fanfiction, so please bear with me. Also, any suggestions are welcome.
What Lurks Within the Abyss
A Kirby Fanfiction by Rosalynn Specter
Honey? Are you OK? Why are you crying?
What happened to your hat? It's all torn up and dirty…
I'm OK. It's nothing, really-
Are the kids at school picking at you again?
Sweetheart, you can tell Mommy anything.
They say I'm a freak, Mommy. They say that my eyes are weird and my hat is weird and my laugh is weird. And they grabbed my hat and threw it away and called me names and laughed at me and IT'S JUST. NOT. FAIR!
Honey, calm down! They're wrong, you're not a freak. And I can always make you a new hat…
…Y-you don't think I'm a freak?
Of course not! You're my baby, and I'll love you no matter what happens. That's what mommies are for, right?
...I'm tired, Mommy.
Of course you are. You should go upstairs and gO To sLEeP-
M-mommy? What's wrong?
gO to SLeeP, LiTTLe oNe. WOuLdN't thAT be NicE?-
Mommy, you're bleeding! You're scaring me!
GO to SLeEP aNd NEveR WakE Up nEVeR wAKe up NeVEr wAke uP WAKE UP WAKE UP WAKE UP WAKE UP WAKE UP WAKEUPWAKEUPWAKEUPWAKEUP-
And the child woke up. And the first thing he felt was terror, nausea and a brain-splitting headache.
And as he tried to calm his nerves and his throbbing skull - that last one failed, as he was shocked to find that he had no hands – he tried to make sense of what he had just dreamed. It was all dark and empty, and he had felt so lonely and sad for no reason. And then that nice voice came and comforted him until the black turned red and the voice started screaming-
"About time you woke up, kid".
The child looked behind him, scared by the voice that sounded so close to him. Two red, narrow slits stared back at him in annoyance from behind a silver mask attached to a hot pink blob of a body. The armored puffball tapped its metal-encased feet impatiently as it crossed its gloved arms, "How long do you plan on staring at me like that?"
Tearing his eyes from the golden horns atop the puffball knight's mask – they couldn't be real, could they? – the child found himself cowering under the other's intense gaze. The crimson eyes were filled with contempt and suspicion, which only made him more uneasy. Finally, he found the resolve to finally ask, "Who are you?"
The knight - definitely male judging by his voice – kept looking at him warily for a while, then scoffed and let his silvery white cape flow behind him as he adopted a more dignified stance, "I am Sir Galacta Knight, the strongest warrior in the Gamble Galaxy-", and then he abruptly stopped, dropping his stance as his eyes filled with resentment, "Or at least I was, until that conceited, pompous, vain little-"
But the child had long stopped listening to him, now focusing on his surroundings. Black and red mixed like paint all around him, and translucent hexagonal panels formed the floor underneath him, showing the endless darkness. Furry grey creatures passed by, their beady black eyes gazing into the distance. The child tried looking farther into the distance, looking for an exit, but the swirls of red and black seemed to extend into infinity.
"-And I swear, when we meet again, I'm going to skin him alive and use his skin as a carpet-"
"Is there any way out of here?" the child turned back to Galacta Knight, who had been ranting to himself. The elder puffball stopped mid-rant and wrapped his cape around him as he shook his head, "I already checked the place, kid. It's the same from miles and miles. If there's an exit, we're too far away from it".
A voice in the back of his head wandered how Galacta Knight could check their surroundings when they were standing on their own little hexagon isle, too far from the rest, right above a possibly endless pit, but he pushed it back into his head as he glared at the pink knight, "Don't call me that. I'm not a little baby; I can take care of myself, thank you very much!"
Galacta chuckled behind his mask, clearly amused by the boy's indignation, "All right then, how should I call you instead?"
The boy opened his mouth as if to answer, but suddenly stopped, eyes widening with grim realization as if he had been slapped in the face. Galacta stopped laughing as the child started hyperventilating, right in the border of panic, "Hey kid, what's wrong-"
"I can't remember", Galacta would've never heard the whisper if not for the heavy silence of solitude that fell around them. The boy raised his paling face to meet Galacta, mismatched red-and-blue eyes meeting glowing crimson, "I can't remember anything. Not my name, or where I come from, or how did I get here…" he started pacing frantically, walking in circles around the knight, the pompons of his multicolored jester hat trailing behind him, "What if I forget everything! First it's my name, next it will be how to walk or how to blink or how to touch my nose with my TONGUE!"
"You don't even have a nose", Galacta Knight pushed away the hysterical youngster, turning his attention to the reddish-black expanse around them, "It seems that whatever happened to you before getting here gave you amnesia. But you'll have to deal with that later; right now we should focus on how to get out of here-"
"Who said anything about leaving?"
Both knight and jester turned to the source of this new voice, only to meet with blackness. Not the same black-mixed-with-red at the background, but a much deeper, more terrifying blackness. And to their horror, millions of eyes opened amidst the cloud of darkness and focused on their small-by-comparison forms.
"I'm afraid we can't let you leave", the dark cloud shifted and gave way to a new form, the white of its skin clashing violently with the black mass around it. It was shaped like a multi-faced polygon, a red eye staring wickedly from each and every side, "Our master has been dying to meet the two of you".
"Can't see why, though", the blackness shifted again, and what looked like a giant eyeball made entirely of flames hovered next to the polygon, looking and Galacta and the small one next to him with disdainful boredom, "I don't understand how these…things can help us take over the galaxy". A third form came forward, another eyeball shaped like a black star, and floated to the other side of the polygon, its singular red eye resting on the smaller of their two prisoners.
"I agree with Dark Mind; the knight looks competent enough, but this one?" the star's crimson eye narrowed in what could only be described as sick glee towards the child's horrified expression, "I think we should have left his pitiful carcass floating outside Popstar's orbit. That would've been more entertaining, anyways".
"Except that Master has made his orders clear" a fourth figure, its body as black as the shifting mass from where it came from, yet rimmed with thick, orange petals, pushed aside the fiery eyeball – Dark Mind – and glared at the black star, "He wants both the silver knight and the boy. Alive. And I recall you being there when he said that, Dark Nebula".
"I know what he said, Unno! Just because you were the first Dark Matter doesn't give you an excuse to patronize me!"
The boy watched the monster above in middle of their argument – Dark Nebula and the black eyeball known as Unno were bickering, Dark Mind complaining about his spot being taken, and the unknown white polygon staring at him and at his companions in mild annoyance – and that was when Dark Nebula's words sank into him.
I should be dead. I died and these guys saved me.
The revelation didn't scare him as much as he thought it would. What really bothered him was the nagging curiosity at the back of his mind as to how could he come back from the dead – if he had really died - or why creepy floating eyeballs had bothered to save him when it was obvious they were not fond of him. And who was their "Master", and what did he want with him? Had they met before?
Galacta, on the other hand, was growing impatient. It was obvious that these creatures were enemies, if they were the ones keeping them inside this bizarre dimension against their will. And now they were arguing like children instead of giving out answers, which enraged the knight even further. He stepped in front of his companion, refusing to look away from the polygon's dozens of intimidating eyes, "I've had enough of this. State your business with us or otherwise stay out of our way. Or else I-"
"Or else what?" the white Dark Matter – which seemed to be its species – growled with such intimidating force that the other three stopped in middle of their quarrel. It hovered closer to Galacta Knight, who stood his ground unflinching under his stare, "You're in Dark Star, puffball. And as long as you are in our domain, you're in no position to boss us around, lest you want to suffer an incredibly painful fate".
"Miracle Matter is right" Unno's gaze closed on the young jester, as if he were the one who had started the argument, "although you do have a second option. Come with us willingly and swear loyalty to the Dark Matter and to our Master. Join us, and no one in the galaxy shall dare defy you!"
The black Dark Matter's speech was abruptly interrupted by Dark Mind, his flaming iris glowing with amusement, "Or you could resist and have us rip you apart into little pieces, slowly and painfully" he was so close to Galacta now that the knight could feel his scorching armor dig through his skin, "You should choose the second. It's been a while since we had some real fun here!"
Beside Galacta, the child cowered as Dark Mind and Dark Nebula roared with laughter at the morbid joke, and even Miracle Mind's eyes were filled with amusement. He couldn't join these guys; not when they wanted to tear him apart so badly…
On the other hand…taking over the galaxy suddenly didn't sound so bad.
He couldn't understand why he was thinking like that, but he didn't have the time to do so anyways, as he suddenly felt as if his head had been cracked like a nut in a nutcracker. Galacta Knight noticed his "partner" cringe in pain through the corner of his eyes, and carefully slid his glove underneath his cloak, "I don't know about the kid here, but I appreciate the offer, for it is a tempting one. Except that you didn't count on one thing…"
It was at that very last second that all of Miracle Matter's eyes fell on the knight's right hand.
"I don't work for anyone but me".
What followed next happened so quickly, none of the beings present had time to register it. In a second, Dark Star was suddenly lit up with crackling neon-blue light, and a fuchsia colored streak sailed across the air at unbelievable speed…
…And embedded itself right into one of Miracle Matter's eyes.
The Dark Matter creature didn't even have time to scream as blue lightning coursed through his body. The boy couldn't help but watch in morbid fascination as the multi-eyed being was violently electrocuted until he felt something tug at his bowtie. He soon found himself being dragged by Galacta Knight, who was running without missing a beat right towards the still-stunned Dark Matter.
"Wait!" he struggled against Galacta's grip, hoping the bowtie would come undone as he tried to run towards the opposite direction. But the silver knight's hold was hard as iron, and he had to keep up with him – whenever he liked it or not - in order to avoid hitting the floor head-first, "It's the other way! If you go there they're gonna kill us and HOLYCRAPWHATAREYOUDOING-"
But Galacta Knight had long stopped listening to him, not reacting in the slightest at the kid's screaming right to his ear amidst his adrenaline rush as they jumped off the hexagon platform, aiming towards the wounded Miracle Matter. With his free hand, he yanked the fuchsia object – which turned out to be a jousting lance – out of the Dark Matter's ruined eye, and trailed safely past him as gravity took over and they began their descent to the gaping darkness below.
The boy had long stopped struggling against the knight's vice grip, now with his eyes closed and hoping fervently that he would die a painless death at least. Maybe he would see his life flash before him; recover his memories right before dying. That would be nice. But he was so immersed in his desperation that he didn't notice they weren't falling anymore until he opened his eyes.
For a second he thought that his wish had been answered. That he had died so quickly he didn't even notice, and that the figure before him was an angel.
A chubby, short and very pink angel.
But once his sight refocused, he realized that he was very much alive, and that the angel was none other than Galacta Knight, his cape flowing behind him. Except that is was not a cape, but a pair of large, feathery wings that beat furiously as they soared across Dark Star at breakneck speed. For a moment, he lost himself to the exhilaration of flight before turning to the older warrior, "You can FLY! Why didn't you do anything before!"
"I didn't think I would be able to take us both this far", Galacta looked over his shoulder at the boy, eyes suddenly widening as he looked past him, "But it seems there's no other choice now!"
The boy looked behind him and paled, looking at the humongous cluster of Dark Matter creatures hot on their trail, closer and closer to them by the minute. Unno, flanked by Dark Mind and Dark Nebula, had long discarded his stoic expression and was barking orders at the frantic lesser Matters as his only eye gleamed with fury, "GET THEM! DON'T YOU DARE LET THEM GET AWAY!"
"Hold on tight, kid!" the boy barely heard Galacta's words before the winged warrior suddenly dived, barely dodging the Dark Matter underlings that suddenly charged at them. Sharply turning, dropping and rising, the knight and the jester narrowly avoided every Matter that flung itself towards them, Galacta's lance dealing with those who came too close. But in middle of their struggle, they failed to see Unno closing in on them, or the orange petals that detached themselves from the Dark Matter's black body and soared towards them like blades.
Galacta merely saw a flash of orange through the corners of his eyes before a searing wave of pain struck him from behind, and his companion could only stare in horror as the now bloody wings went limp, dropping them both into the pit below. The Dark Matters saw their prey fall and dived faster than before, intent on catching them before they disappeared into the darkness. Looking one last time above him, the child saw Unno sneering, his red eye mocking him…
"Fools…we could have done this the easy way. You could have saved yourselves a lot of pain…"
He looked down at the gaping pit below, the darkness within looking even more terrifying up close. Galacta, who was still holding to his bowtie, was looking dazed due to blood loss, the shimmering red droplets striking against the snow white of his feathers. He looked up again and saw the Dark Matter even closer now, shadowy tendrils reaching out from their misty body to grab at him.
"But as long as you're alive, our Master won't mind receiving damaged goods".
The Dark Matter closed in, and the boy was enveloped in darkness alongside the knight.
But then the black became white. And within the white, all the colors of the spectrum shimmered and shifted and flashed across the child's eyes.
He could no longer feel his body. He felt as if he were no more than a wisp of smoke being blown away by a hurricane, spinning around until he felt his head would explode from the pressure and when he tried to scream, no sound came out of his throat. The colors surrounding him merged into light as everything around him spun faster and faster and faster-
And then he landed face-first on the dirt.
He slowly dragged himself off the ground, his body feeling numb and heavy. Completely disoriented, he tried to make sense of his surroundings, dark green and blue swimming across his vision. He turned around and the green and blue became pink and silver, mixing together within his sight-
"Are you going to stand there, or are you going to help me!"
His vision suddenly sharpened, and the pink and silver solidified into the figure of Galacta Knight, standing upside down. As his mind cleared, the boy noticed that, much to his amusement, the knight was stuck due to his horns digging deep into the earth. Carefully, he tugged at his wings with his teeth while ignoring the pink puffball's protests and stumbled backwards once the horns were removed from the ground.
"Thank you…" the older warrior straightened his crooked mask and stretched his wings, not taking his eyes from the young jester, "Now, care to explain how in blazes did you managed to do that?"
"You teleported us here all the way from Dark Star! I've known a few that can manage such trick…" Galacta stepped closer, his torn wings cloaking everything in shadow as his crimson eyes glowered at the jester, "But none could achieve what you, a mere child, just did. And I hope you have an explanation for that".
Confused, the boy looked around and was shocked to see that Galacta Knight was right. Soft, green grass grew under his feet instead of glass hexagons, and the horizon was dyed a deep indigo rather than red and black. He could see the shining lights of towns beyond the meadows, flickering like fireflies amidst the darkness, and he couldn't help the feeling that he had been here before.
"Whooooaaaa…." Sheepishly, he turned to face Galacta, scratching the back of his head, "Look, I don't know how did that, but you could at least-"
Wait a minute.
He slowly turned to his sides and gasped. Where a normal person would have arms and where he previously had nothing, two golden wings had sprouted. Each had two tiny yet sharp claws and a bright red heart etched into them, their tips molded into the shape of a razor-sharp heart. Hexagon and pentagon-shaped mirrors sparkled in all colors seen and unseen where feathers would usually be found. He managed to catch his reflection into one of them, his childish smile striking through the mirror's lime green hue, "This…is…so AWESOME! I didn't even think I could do this!"
"I didn't know anyone for that matter could do that, kid" Galacta, on the other hand, didn't seem to share his joy for his newfound power as he kept staring at the child's claws, "Now that is a truly rare ability. You have more power than you think, and that is not necessarily a good thing".
"Sure, go ahead; ruin my fun" the small jester childishly blew a raspberry at the knight, who simply rolled his eyes and reached out to have a better look at his wings. Suddenly, these rippled like the surface of a pond, and vanished out of sight in a flash of light. Shocked and angry, the boy turned to glare at him, "HEY! What did you do!"
"I didn't do anything!" the now exasperated knight raised his gaze to the skies, "I don't even know why I-" but he suddenly halted in his words, his eyes adopting a strange glow as he stared at the night sky. The boy looked up to see what had shocked the knight so badly, and was soon at a loss of words himself.
Millions of starts speckled the black canvas of the sky above. Blue, white and orange dots of light spiraled through the sky and comets twisted into intricate patterns across the cosmos. And right in the middle of the celestial maelstrom, the golden crescent moon – he could've sworn it was wearing gloves, but he was too distracted to care – hung proud and mighty.
"Popstar" he heard Galacta Knight whisper beside him. He was gazing at the spectacle before him, red eyes glowing with a mixture of nostalgia and childish admiration, "It's been so long since I was last here, but I would recognize those constellations anywhere in the galaxy…" His eyes suddenly glazed over with an unspeakable sadness, but the child beside him never noticed.
Popstar? The name was oddly familiar, and many feelings suddenly stirred inside of him. Sorrow. Anger. Shame. Bliss. Fear. Longing. All these emotions rushed through his body like wildfire, rocketing like the shooting stars above his head…
And suddenly, it hit him. It shook his whole being to his very core, and it became so clear to him.
"Marx…" he whispered, and saying that one word filled his being with relief, "my name is Marx".
"Nice name, ki-I mean, Marx" Galacta Knight chuckled to himself. He still was worried about the jester's unusual abilities, but he finally settled to leave him be for the time period. After all, he still had some unfinished business to deal with, so this would have to wait. Reverting his wings into a now torn and bloody cape, the hot pink knight started trekking down the hill they were standing in, leaving Marx behind.
"Hey, wait a minute!" Marx scurried behind him and soon blocked his path, "where are we going?"
"I have issues to deal with" gently pushing the purple-furred creature aside, the silver armored knight continued on his path without even bothering to look at him, "and I don't know about you, but you're certainly not coming with me. This is where our paths diverge".
"But nothing. I don't have time to babysit you. My wings are pretty much useless right now, so the last thing I need are more delays" keeping his constant step, the knight soon left Marx behind, whose mismatched eyes filled with tears of frustration that he furiously wiped away.
"But I don't wanna be alone. I don't know what to do anymore…"
Galacta stopped in his tracks. He had trained himself to disregard emotion when it came in the way of his goals, but even he wasn't completely heartless when it came to matters like these. Still, he merely turned around to face the weeping child one last time before resuming his march, "Life is not easy, kid. And with amnesia like yours, it won't get any better. But sitting there and crying won't help you either. And though I doubt it, we might meet again sometime…"
And before Marx could stop him, Galacta Knight disappeared into the night, his round form devoured by the shadows of the trees.
He stood there for minutes, staring at the spot where Galacta had disappeared. Wiping the last of his tears and taking a deep breath, he set on walking down the opposite direction into the bright lights of the towns beyond.
Doubt flared in his chest for a second, yet he had no option at this moment but to swallow it down, and so he walked forward into the unknown.
Yeah, the not-so-mysterious character turned out to be Marx. It was hard to write about him without giving away his identity so I gave that up. I want to apologize if I made him OOC, but then again, he just lost his memory. But don't worry; he'll get his memories (and insanity) soon enough.
Also, I decided to name the same Dark Matter from the earlier Kirby games "Unno". I know his/its name is Dark Matter actually, but since this is used more as a collective term than as an individual name now, I had no option but to come up with a fan name of sorts. "Unno" is supposed to be a play on the Spanish word for "one" (although if you own the game you probably already knew that). I chose it because being the first Kirby final boss to appear, I take it he was the first Dark Matter created. Just sayin'…
EDIT: Some people have told me that my story (or at least this chapter) is too similar to Actias Knight's story "Without", even Actias Knight herself. Her story inspired me to write my own, but it was never my intention to make it so similar to her own. To me, stealing other people's idea is a terrible thing, and I feel bad for it even if I didn't mean to. Either way, I wrote this to clarify that I didn't mean to copy Actias Knight. And just so you know, both her stories and art are AMAZING, so you guys should really check out her dA. So, um, in a way, give credit to Actias Knight for this story; she was my inspiration after all.