Author's Note: And now, we get to the meat of the matter, the actual story! Admittedly, there really isn't that much to write about in these first few areas in the game… but that doesn't mean I won't try! Enjoy, everybody!
Chapter 3: Dimensions
The three of us were standing in a white, empty space. Suddenly, lines started appearing around us, drawing out a field. Colors soon filled the outlines, and in just a minute, we were in the middle of a lush, green field. The sky was blue, the flowers were bright, and even the air itself smelled bright and cheerful. In fact, the only thing that was "off" about the entire scene was the Void floating far off in the sky.
"I like this Dream!" I said, closing my eyes and taking a deep breath of the fresh air.
"My Stars… this is real!" laughed Goombella, looking over the field with joy in her eyes. "We're in another World! Think of all the new knowledge we could gather! Culture! Biology! There's an almost infinite amount of knowledge we could tap into here!"
"Let's not forget that we're on a mission," Tippi reminded us as she flew in front of us. "We have to find the Keyhole and collect the Pure Heart."
"Right!" I nodded, leading the way forward. "C'mon guys, we'll grab the Pure Heart and be back in time for Lunch!"
I wouldn't jump to conclusions like that, Coron warned. Getting to the Keyhole can't be an easy task, if it connects directly to the Heart of a Dream.
"Oh relax, just look at this place!" I said, motioning to the peaceful field. "None of Bowser's minions… no traps… nothing!"
"Talking to Coron?" Goombella asked.
"Yeah," I nodded. "He's worried about the dangers that might stand between here and the Keyhole."
"Well… I think I actually agree with him," Goombella said. "This is an alien World, Pax. We know NOTHING about it. We may not have to face any of Bowser's minions, but we may have to face something even worse."
"Well… even if we do, we can take it on!" I assured. "With Coron's experience, my Sword, your brains AND fighting skills and Mario's talent, we could take on anything!"
Mario nodded enthusiastically, pumping his fist.
"Well… alright, you have a point," Goombella grinned. "This really is a good team-up, if you ask me."
Oh brother, are you guys REALLY that easy to sway? Coron groaned.
"Aw, don't pretend you didn't like my compliment!" I said lightheartedly, "poking" at Coron.
Touch me again and the next time we Shift, I will jump off a cliff.
"Okay, okay! Touchy…"
After a bit of walking, we arrived at a house on top of a hill. Seeing as the only living creatures we encountered so far were pig-like cubed monsters Tippi called Squiglets, we decided to enter and see if anybody was home.
"Maybe they'll be able to direct us to a nearby town," Goombella said hopefully as we arrived.
"Hey, I said I was sorry!" I defended. "It wasn't my fault we got lost!"
"But… you were the one who suggested we headed-" started Tippi.
"That's not important!" I shrugged off, entering the house. The place was completely empty.
"Huh," I blinked. "Guess nobody lives here, then…"
"Guess again," Goombella corrected, searching the empty house carefully. "There was a mailbox outside, and the chimney was smoking. Somebody's definitely living here, they just don't want to be found…"
"I wonder why?" I thought aloud. "As pretty as this place is, it's in the middle of nowhere. I don't see what he would be hiding from."
Probably from people coming in from other Dreams, suggested Coron. It's probably not an accident we wound up in this field when we entered. This must be the "Drop-off Point" in the Dream.
"So this guy knows about other Dreams," I reasoned. Mario caught our attention by whistling.
"Thank you, Mario," Tippi said. "I think I can sense a hidden Door here."
"Great!" I clapped my hands. "Where?"
"Just a moment…" Tippi turned to a blank wall and focused. A moment later, a section of the wall turned rainbow-colored, and a door was standing there.
"Wow, you're good," I nodded. "What else can you do, Tippi?"
"Oh, you know…" Tippi said modestly as I stepped forward and opened the door. "Just average things. Find information on enemies… scout areas… reveal invisible objects, that sort of thing."
"You know about the monsters of other Worlds?" Goombella asked excitedly.
"No, I simply look at them and-" Tippi started.
"How in the world did you get in here?!" a voice asked, making them turn their heads to the room. Standing… or rather, floating at the far end was an older man on a cloud, with a mustache so big it was ludicrous.
"We walked in," I told him. "We wanted to ask-"
"Oh! I see!" the man interrupted. "No need to finish, I understand what you need! I mean, it is only natural that the Legendary Heroes spoken of in the prophesies would come to me, the Great and Powerful Bestovius, for help!"
"Well actually-" started Tippi.
"But then again…" Bestovius looked us over. "How do I know for certain you're the REAL heroes, and not just imposters?"
In reply, I held out my hand and summoned the Sword of Dreams in a flash of light, making Bestovius jump back in surprise.
"By my magnificent mustache… you're the Dream Keeper!" he said in surprise.
"Yeah, I am," I nodded, returning the Sword of Dreams. "But back to the matter at hand, do you know where-"
"Which must make YOU the legendary Hero of Dimensions!" Bestovius pointed at Mario. He, in turn, pointed at himself with a raised eyebrow.
"Unless you're an imposter…" muttered Bestovius, stroking that ridiculous mustache.
"Okay… look, hero or not, we need-" started Goombella.
"Alright, it's settled!" Bestovius clapped his hands. "If you want my help, you'll have to give me 10,000 Coins!"
"What?!" I asked. "No way, bub! I'd rather take my chances-"
"Alright, alright…" Bestovius sighed. "I just want all your coins, then."
"We're leaving!" Goombella called out as she turned to the door.
"Okay, okay!" Bestovius sighed. "Right, in that case, I'll do the oh-so-common thing and help you for free."
"Now that's more like it," I nodded as Goombella turned back around. "Now then-"
Energy started to fill Mario, and his body started to glow. He looked down at his hands in confusion.
"There we go!" Bestovius nodded. "I have given you the ability to flip between dimensions!"
"…?" Mario tilted his head in confusion.
"You see," Bestovius explained, "each Dream exists in multiple layers of Dimensions. I'm sure neither of us have the time required for me to explain it further, but basically, this lets you 'flip' in between the 2nd dimension-our dimension-and the 3rd dimension. Be warned, though… your body is designed to exist within this 2nd dimension, so spending too much time in the 3rd dimension will hurt you."
"…we just wanted directions to the nearest town," Tippi piped in.
"Uh…" Bestovius blinked. "Oh. Well… just head West outside the house until you hit a path, then follow it to the mountains. It'll be on the other side."
"Got it, thanks!" I waved at him as we walked out the door. "Oh, and thanks for giving Mario the power to Flip!"
Bestovius stared at the door after we all left.
"…okay, I feel like an idiot now," he groaned, covering his face with his hand. "…I still have a better mustache than that Flipper, though."
"You wanted to see us, Count Bleck?" I asked, walking into the dark room. O'Chunks was already waiting there, and Count Bleck was standing on a platform, Nastasia standing next to him.
"Yes," Count Bleck nodded, glancing up from the Dark Prognosticus he held in his hands. "Nastasia has just brought something to my attention that we could easily… exploit."
"Sounds wonderful!" I grinned, clapping my hands. "Who are we going to end today?"
"Wow, you're really dark, you know that?" asked O'Chunks.
"Eh, whatever," I shrugged off, holding out my hand and creating a comfy chair out of pure darkness, which I plopped onto. "So, what is this exploitable thing you've teased us about?"
"SORRY I'M LATE!"
A second O'Chunks burst through the door, panting.
"Sorry Count, I got lost… in…" O'Chunks slowed to a stop as his eyes fell on the O'Chunks that was already in the room. "How did I… OH, MIMI!"
"Mimimimimimimimi!" giggled the fake O'Chunks. His body was surrounded in purple smoke, and the form of Princess Peach stood in the spot.
"Geeze, would ya quit doing that?!" O'Chunks stomped his foot. "You know I get easily confused!"
"That's not exactly Mimi's problem now, is it?" I asked, examining my nails.
"NOBODY ASKED YOU, DIMENTIO!"
"Uh, hey, could I have your attention?" Nastasia piped in. "Yeah, so, I just caught wind from the Nightmares that a powerful force of light has just entered the Dream Realm."
"The Dream Keeper?" I asked, raising an eyebrow.
"We think so," Count Bleck nodded. "Just as the Dark Prognosticus foretold, he must be gathering the Eight Pure Hearts to combat us."
"And you want us to crush him, right?" O'Chunks asked, punching the palm of his hand.
"Wow, you actually had an intelligent thought!" Mimi giggled. "That's a first!"
"Watch it!" warned O'Chunks, glaring at the Polymorphic Nobody.
"To answer your question, O'Chunks…" Count Bleck raised his voice only slightly, so as to catch our attention. "Yes, I would very much like for you to crush this Dream Keeper before he becomes a problem."
I raised my eyebrow in question. I was wearing a mask so nobody could see this, but Count Bleck held out a hand to me, as if saying that he would explain it in a minute.
"Alright, don't worry Count!" O'Chunks saluted. "I won't fail you!"
"You had better not," Count Bleck replied, a tone of warning in his voice. O'Chunks gulped before holding out his arms. The Void came in around him, and in a moment he was gone, on his way to the Dream.
"…you want to gauge how powerful the Dream Keeper really is," I said to Count Bleck as I realized this. "And who better to throw at him to measure his strength than the blubbering oaf who relies solely on his strength?"
"Bravo, Dimentio," smirked Count Bleck. "Would you do the honors of keeping an eye on him? Make sure the Dream Keeper doesn't utterly destroy him, he's still of use to us."
"It would be my pleasure," I said as I stood up and bowed to him.
"It really shouldn't take you that long, anyway," Mimi mused as she examined Peach's nails. "O'Chunks won't last five minutes against that stupid Dream Keeper."
"Still sore about losing to him back when he was still using a Hammer?" I smirked.
"H-hey!" Mimi turned into Bowser as she glared at me. "How do you know about that?!"
"I'll just say… a Dream filled completely with Gem-filled pools and Hunky Lifeguards?" I smirked, crossing my arms. "You gotta have higher goals, if you ask me."
"HAVE YOU BEEN READING MY DIARY?!" To be honest, I never thought I'd see Bowser blush. I laughed as I held out my hands and ordered the Darkness to take me to the Dream. In a single instant, I was gone.
Author's Note: Not much to say about this chapter, really… so, until next time, this is Pax the Dreamer, signing out!