Hello, hello, my dungeon-rats! Mayflower here! Sorry about my absence recently - I don't know if you heard, but this 'Wrath of the Lamb' thing came out. I've been a little busy with that - it's kind of awesome. Anyway, with Platinum God nearly in my grasp, I decided to get to work on this story that's been sitting in the cellar for a while while I wait for Edmund McMillen's response to "seriously, McMillen, this isn't fun anymore - where the F %&'s that Polaroid when you need it?" Bathe in the excellence of this moment, Isaac board - it usually takes me months or years to finish full-length stories, and I pulled out this one in two weeks. I simply couldn't put it down, so I hope the same stands for you. :)
Anyway, I'll quit my rambles. Everybody pick your character, grab some popcorn during the opening cinematic, and let's get started!
LAWYERBOT SAYS: "Uh-oh! The multichapter race in the Isaac board is on!"
The Binding of Isaac, including all related characters, items, and locations (c) Edmund McMillen, because he's awesome.
Original story of 'the binding of Isaac' (c) Genesis 22, one of the MANY Biblical fun-facts I learned on this journey.
Please note that the following is simply one take on a novelization of this epic adventure. The game is deep and symbolic, therefore meant to be open to interpretation. Please do not correct my version, merely enjoy it for the experience. :)
CHAPTER ONE: Down Below
Isaac shivered as he finally awoke, his fingers shaking over his cold, exposed skin. He half-mindedly reached for his blanket, but the lack of a blanket and the ache of his back quickly reminded him of his situation.
This wasn't his bedroom.
It was the basement.
A fresh wave of tears coming down his face, Isaac remembered the story as he got back to his feet. Losing his crayons, being stripped down and locked in his room, his mother grabbing the butcher knife...
He froze. Oh, no, Mom!
In an immediate panic, Isaac set off running through the basement, although he didn't remember it being nearly so expansive. Where was she? She could be anywhere! Where was she hiding? Did she still have the knife? Did God still want her to kill him?
All of Isaac's panic was quickly dismissed as he turned the corner and nearly ran face-first into another living creature.
It looked about his size, just a bit bloated. It walked with a funny limp, and had big, black eyes that looked about to burst into tears...not unlike Isaac's.
The refugee was timid in his approach, taking a cautious step forward with his arm extended towards the creature. "Uhm...hi?"
The creature gave a small cry, nervously limping for its life. It was a good bit slower than Isaac, but despite its lack of speed, it seemed dead-set on getting as far from Isaac as it could.
"No, no, don't run!" Isaac had always been soft-hearted, and could never stand watching other things suffer. Besides, they were stuck down here together, right? Why not stick together? Maybe together, they could find their way out. So Isaac gave chase after the creature.
Which promptly took a deep breath and blew itself up once Isaac was a little too close, exploding in a hail of bloody flies.
Said flies were quick to attack, swarming Isaac and spinning around him, buzzing loudly as they pecked and poked at him. The young refugee did what he could to swat them away, but unlike the flies outside his house that went away with a good smack, these kept coming again and again. They kept biting and biting, turning Isaac's skin raw with their aggression, sending sting after sting of pain through his small frame.
Isaac begged for them to stop, another wave of tears falling down his face. But this time was different. This time, the tears splashed away from his face, instead crashing into the flies. After a few hits of saline, the flies were defeated, disappearing in small poofs, leaving Isaac alone in the room as if they were never there.
A shaky Isaac attempted to calm his rampant tears as he examined his wounds, but to no avail - he couldn't stop crying. Which wasn't necessarily a bad thing - apparently, flies didn't like the taste of tears. Was that a good thing? Should he be concerned?
Ah, no time for that - he had to keep moving!
As Isaac eventually learned, it wasn't only flies that disliked the feel of saline. There were also the mulligans, the pacers, the clotties, the hoppers, the moters, and the pooters. (All names that Isaac assigned himself - he was never one for not knowing things' names, but since none of these...whatever-they-weres would stop and speak with him, he had no choice but to improvise.)
There was one room, though, that didn't contain any enemies. It was a pretty room, with a gold crown above the door. It was warm, unlike the rest of the unforgiving basement, because a small fire was burning on scraps of kindling in each corner. In the center of this room was what appeared to be a small child...
...From a distance.
As Isaac was sickened to discover, the baby was deceased. It was a sick blue color, as if it were suffocated, and lay on the rock pedastal in the middle of the room, alone and unmoving.
Nervously, Isaac gave the babe a gentle shake; not that he was expecting a reaction or anything, mind you.
Which is why he was nearly horrified when he got one. The baby hopped to life, giving a few slimy spits that seemed to follow the same pattern of delayed gravity as Isaac's tears before floating around Isaac's head.
The panicked refugee tried to shoo the undead creature away. "Hey, what're you doin'? Stop it, go back to playing dead, you're scaring me!"
"Calm down, Isaac! They're here to help!"
Temporarily forgetting about the little baby, Isaac looked up to the door. There was a girl standing there, timidly tucked behind the doorframe, trying to hide her round face and dark eyes behind her mass of bright blonde curl. There was a baby floating behind her, only where Isaac's was blue, the other one was red.
Not having a history of good encounters in this basement so far, Isaac was hesitant about reaching out to her. He took a nervous step backwards, and the baby in blue followed suit.
"No, no, don't be scared!" the girl apologized, panickedly stumbling forward and reaching her arms out. "I won't hurt you, I promise."
"Yeah." The girl fixed her blonde mane, or at least as much as one could. "What are you doing down here?"
"My mom chased me down here," Isaac admitted shyly, rubbing his barren arm. "D-Do you know how to get out?"
The girl looked aside sadly, shaking her head. "Sorry. My mom chased me down here, too. I've been stuck ever since."
There was an awkward silence as Isaac gave the girl another look-over. Was it possible that this wasn't the first time? That Mom did this before? That he actually had...a sister?
"...What's your name?"
"Magdalene." She giggled at the confused look on Isaac's face, the refugee struggling to wrap the intricate name around his tongue. "Y'can call me Maggie fer short." Struck with realization, she motioned back to her baby in red. "This is my baby sister. I named her Maggie, too."
"I'm Isaac." After a short pause, Isaac looked back at the floating babe at his side. If Maggie named hers, he had to name his, right?
Bob. That sounds like a good name for him; he'll be Brother Bobby.
The creature the siblings decided to dub 'Monstro' gave a wicked chuckle, licking its fat tongue over its harelip before a throaty cough led to a huge wave of blood and sick to crash in their general direction, and they just barely escaped.
Isaac was quick to learn one thing about the stranger Magdalene - she was SLOW. Identical to Isaac in almost every way except for hair and gender, but she could only move at a brisk walk, whereas Isaac had the energy to sprint as fast as his legs could carry.
Only being a young boy, he had to blame it on the fact she was a girl.
Luckily, he had managed to carry her through the fight, albeit quite worse for wear, and Monstro finally crumbled into a heap of blood and gore after several-hundred tear shots. (She was also right about the babies they found, though - Brother Bobby and Sister Maggie were great assets between Bobby's spitting up saliva and Maggie spitting up what they could only cringe and assume to be blood. Both of which seemed to operate just as well as the siblings' tears.)
"We made it," Isaac panted, laying on the ground as he allowed the pain racking through his body to calm down. Monstro had landed a good shot, and all of the blood and sick had re-irritated the fly wounds from earlier, causing his entire body to sting all over again.
"Are you okay, Isaac?"
Isaac shook his head no, so Maggie scooted closer and offered him some food. It was a blood-red chunk of Isaac-wasn't-sure-what that seemed to pulse in Maggie's tiny hand. "Go on, eat it, you'll feel better," she encouraged.
So Isaac sat up and took a trepid bite. It was quite yummy; warm and oozy, just like biting into breakfast oatmeal before Sunday school. She called it her Yum Heart, but Isaac wasn't bothered to ask why - point is, he immediately felt a lot better!
There was just one problem, though: "Well, we explored every room. Now where do we go?"
Magdalene tugged on her partner's arm, pointing him towards the opposite wall. "We could always go that way."
Isaac looked, immediately spotting the hole in the floor that wasn't there moments ago. "...Where did that come from?"
"...Y'think we should?"
"Not really. It really hurt to jump down the last hole. I don't wanna do it again."
Both of them seized with fear when an echo shook through the basement, though: I~SAAC!
"Oh, no, that's Mom!" Isaac panicked.
"We can't let her find us!" Maggie squealed.
The two turned their matching dark eyes to the hole in the floor.
There just wasn't any other way.
And so, the adventure begins anew! What kind of disasters will Isaac and Maggie stumble upon in the next area? Only one way to find out - sacrifice your only child!
...I mean tune in next time! :D
§ Tucker's Mayflower, signing off! §