PROTAGONISTS: Series of the Convergence World - Chapter 37 - MatthewMcBacon (2024)

Chapter Text

The Magikoopa had been brought back to his barracks after Mario’s attack. He had been placed in his bed, and the whole time, he hadn’t moved at all.

“So you’re saying you found him like this,” asked the Boo, trembling.

“He was outside when Mario showed up,” answered the Koopa Troopa who had helped to move him there. “He must have gotten him pretty good.”

“He got a nasty bruise on the back of his head.” The other Koopa speaking there was a doctor, who gently lifted the Magikoopa’s head. Blood had gotten through the bandage, and onto his pillow. “I’ve never seen a wound like this before. He just won’t stop bleeding. Let me get some more bandages.” The Koopa went over to a box of medical supplies he placed on a nearby desk.

“He was probably one of the best Magikoopas we had. He could have rivaled Kamek.” The Koopa who was speaking to him saw how overwhelmed the Boo was becoming. “Why don’t you go relax? The doctor will make things better.”

“I don’t know if I can. It’s a lot more bleeding than I expected.”

Suddenly, the door slammed open, and it was a frantic soldier. “Doctor, one of the soldiers is losing it. He’s in too much pain from the explosion.”

Panicked, the doctor closed his box of medical supplies and grabbed it. “I-I’m sorry. I’ll have to come back later.” He rushed out of the room.

The Koopa saw the Boo covering his mouth, seemingly about to sob. “Eh, don’t worry about your friend here. He’s gonna be fine.”

“I doubt that,” the Boo told him.

“You ever tried thinking positively?”

The Boo was sick of how naive and ignorant they were. “You ever tried not being an idiot?”

The Koopa scoffed. “This is why you don’t have friends.” And then he left, too, slamming the door shut.

The only real friend the Boo ever had was the Magikoopa in that bed. He was different from the others, and even his skin color was different. It had always been white, but he seemed even paler than before, and the blood was beginning to spread across the rest of the pillow. The only person he had was going to die, and the Boo covered his mouth again and cried.

He was completely unaware of the other ghost peeking through the corner.

Bowser was alone, as bodies were strewn across the street. It was hard for him to tell who was a part of his army, or troops from Beret's militia. Even still he looked up at what remained of Bonneton's capital building, and someone was waiting for him on what was left of the stairs. Bowser snarled when he realized it was Beret himself, and his burned fist bled as he clenched it. His steps were heavy, and soon, he reached him.

"I got your message," Beret said, before looking over at the corpse of the Magikoopa. Bowser saw them too, and immediately launched a fireball that Beret blocked with a magic shield using his own. "Before we get started, you may as well know the truth." Beret stood, and the two glared at each other. "We were never responsible for the death of your son. It was a group of rogues led by a man named Hōpukirā. He manipulated members of our order, and convinced them to do…unspeakable things.”

"Oh yeah," Bowser asked. "And what makes you think I'd believe that?"

"I suppose it doesn't matter at this point, not after the things you've done…There were civilians in what used to be the building behind me. There were children in there with families, and you killed them.”

“They were all crazy monsters anyway-”

“Is that what you said to yourself?” Beret was disgusted by his callousness. “Half of the city weren’t even followers, and you have the gall to come back a second time, and massacre my people! They were never responsible for Roy’s death! None of them were! But you, you were responsible for all theirs. All of that suffering you caused, it was for nothing. Who in their right mind would call you a heretic? You’re a disease, and you’ll never stop coming back…But killing, that is the only way to bring real change.”

And Bowser would make sure that Beret would be the one to die. “Oh yeah? Then why don’t you do something about it?”

Beret grabbed chunks of rubble with electric tendrils, and hurled them at Bowser. He swiped them away with his claws, and immediately, Beret took to the air and fired a concentrated bolt with his wand. Bowser sidestepped, and launched a large fireball that Beret teleported away from. He reappeared and stayed airborne, flanking him from a distance before launching another bolt. Bowser dodged that too, and chased him. He readied his burned fist, and swung it, and he launched in the air in the direction of Beret.

Terrified, he teleported, but he was close to getting hit. Bowser saw the ball of light he had briefly changed into, however, and a stream of flames came out of his mouth. He turned himself around, and when Beret re-appeared, he caught it and quickly flew higher.

Beret then unleashed yet another bolt as Bowser returned to the ground, and he leapt back as it crashed in front of him. Four tendrils thrice his size burst out of the ground. One of them appeared behind Bowser, as they all closed around the initial bolt. Bowser then dashed and jumped towards an opening between them, and watched the tendrils wrap around the ground.

Large chunks were scooped out and lit aflame. Beret then quickly flung them. Bowser guarded his face, and leapt over the newly created hole, and charged, as fiery stones struck his arms. He endured through every single one striking him in the barrage. One of his knees was hit, but the most it did was make him lose his balance. He quickly got it back, then he spat another fireball. Beret cast another shield to block.

Then copies of him overtook the sky, who all readied to strike more bolts at Bowser. He found the real Beret without much effort, and he knocked him out of the sky with another ball of fire. All of his clones disappeared at once, and smoke came from the embers on his suit. Bowser ran towards him, laughing as he did.

Before he could hit the ground, Beret snapped back into consciousness, and turned so his feet would face it. Electricity slowed down his fall, then Bowser grabbed him by the foot. His grip alone was bad enough to make bones break, and Beret let out a scream. He struck him with a panicked bolt, and managed to hit an eye. Bowser was forced to let go and cover half his face, as Beret was beginning to lose his composure.

He returned to the sky while Bowser observed droplets of blood landing on the palm of his hand. His left eye had become pink and bloodshot, and more burns were on the side of his head…Then he saw Beret trying to escape, and Bowser was so enraged that he couldn’t get angrier. Calmly, he breathed in, and exhaled a flurry of blue fire that closed in on Beret.

He looked back and ascended further, but those flames were following behind. He re-directed himself backwards, summoning a shield that some of the fires hit, breaking it, before returning to the ground and slamming his wand down. Four electrical disks rolled towards Bowser, and he went back to the sky as the blue flames continued their pursuit.

Bowser spun out of the way of the first disk, dodging the second, before the ones that passed him circled back in his direction. Bowser launched himself with his fist to gain some distance, and he curled into a ball and rolled, to get even further away. He then scaled the side of a clocktower nearby, and quickly made it to the top. Bowser then watched the electrical disks dissipate, and he smugly grinned.

Meanwhile, Beret flew above the remnants of City Hall with the blue flames getting ever closer. With more tendrils, he grabbed more debris, and dove with them, having all of it envelop his body. The fires immediately touched that rubble, and it was the only layer of protection he had along with purple flames and bolts between the gaps. The heat alone made him sweat, and his skin was burning, and the fear and horror and pain forced him to scream.

Bowser continued grinning when he watched the flames go away. He was certain Beret wouldn’t last much longer, but then he heard an explosion, and looked up at distant buildings. They were all burning, and in spite of his conquest to avenge Roy’s death, he was suddenly hollow again.

Then just as suddenly, more bolts came from one nearby, and he was able to avoid them. Atop one of them, a few buildings down were two Bonnetors that somehow were still alive.

“Yeah, that’s what you get,” one of them shouted.

“That’s for our city,” shouted out the other.

Then at the last possible moment, they spotted a Bullet Bill coming towards them, and they were killed in the following explosion.

The rubble shielding Beret was blackened by the time they were lifted by tendrils. Beret was screaming again, and he raised his wand as a myriad more of them emerged. Desperate to survive, more of the rubble was taken, and he grabbed as much of it as he could. The burnt rubble clustered together, and shaped into a spike above his wand.

Beret spotted where Bowser was, and even from afar, he could feel his malicious glare. He was forced to wait for the magic from that explosion to fade…And once it did, Beret flew towards the building with all the debris of his former home trailing behind him. His body was strained and it became overwhelming to keep control of himself. Beret launched the spike right at Bowser, and it was still tethered to the bolt connecting to his wand.

Bowser dodged out of the way with very little effort. “You’re getting tired, aren’t you,” he said.

Beret tried to get a hold of his breathing, desperately, pulling the spike back. Bowser easily caught it, and he was forced to sever the connection. The structure crumbled into stones, then he flung more of the debris in his reserves, but Bowser punched it away.

“Looks like you can’t hit me,” Bowser told him. “That’s a real shame. And to think you were so high and mighty.”

Beret tried to strike him with more lightning, but Bowser unleashed his flames, and he was narrowly able to shield himself with the rubble. Beads of sweat poured down his head, and the heat agitated his already pinkened skin.

Suddenly, Bowser’s burnt fist punctured the barrier, and on the other side, he began prying it, his legs pushing against it. Half the debris broke off, and Beret was forced to fly higher to get away. Bowser dove back to the roof of the clock tower, and he climbed up to the top of the hat-like structure. He simply watched Beret after that cowering directly above him.

Beret wanted to get out of there. He needed to find his family and the group of survivors Mario was protecting.

That’s when Bowser launched even more flames.

Beret was barely able to get away, and when he fell, he realized what the color of it was. The blue fires advanced closer, and he shielded himself again, seeing the flames from the edges making him fall faster.

And behind him, Bowser launched himself upwards with his fist pointing upwards.

Beret then turned that rubble, but the moment he did, Bowser grabbed the edge of the pile. Beret made it scatter, and Bowser was thrown higher. Now he was above Beret with a vengeful smile. His arm was raised, and all the debris his tendrils held quickly returned to their caster. The moment Beret was covered, it was struck.

And the two plummeted into the clock tower.

They crashed through the ceiling, and into the bell, taking it with them, and then they fell down several floors. Beret felt the back of his head smash into the stone meant to protect him, leaving a mark of blood as it all started falling apart.

They crashed into the clock tower’s lobby. The bell was reduced to pieces scattered across the room, with Bowser’s arm buried in the pile where Beret used to be. He pulled it out, knowing he teleported, and he was quick to figure out where. Beret was on the floor above him, and he fired a concentrated bolt from which Bowser evaded.

The bolt split off into several more tendrils that grabbed whatever chunks they could find. Beret jumped down, slowing his fall with lightning under his feet. However, his head was clouded, and he collapsed to his knees. Whatever tendrils didn’t disappear remained slumped on the floor, and all the chunks were dropped. The strain in his body had gotten much worse, and he tightly grabbed his hat, trying to keep it on his head.

Bowser then said something to him. “You know that magic of yours is fake, right? It’s not even the real deal. It’s just some cheap knockoff made by a bunch of wizards. If you got hit by the actual stuff, I doubt you’d even last a second.”

Beret desperately threw whatever rubble he could hold. Bowser swiped it, and Beret began to shiver.

“And you want to know something else,” he asked, taunting him further. “I fought that dragon, long before Mario had the chance. How else do you think I controlled it? But then again, you probably already knew that. You’re a useless traitor. What else do I have to say to you?” Bowser was done toying with him. “This is for killing Roy.”

Bowser’s hypocrisy pushed Beret to his breaking point. With a sudden scream, and a burst of rage and adrenaline, he fired one more powerful bolt. Bowser got out of its way, and it burnt into the wall. Beret then turned it, and it followed Bowser as he was forced to run around the room. However, he was able to close in quickly, but Beret jumped away and flew towards the door, opening it with electricity coming from his hand.

Bowser chased him…until he noticed something embedded in the wall and a line of it across the doorway. It was purple lightning, and the sheer heat from it caused sparks and cracks to form. Bowser saw that it trailed across all of the walls, and they were starting to spread. He then realized what Beret was intending to do, and learned that he actually could get angrier.

Beret stayed close to the ground with his wand facing back. Two tendrils were extended and latched to the clock tower, as they began to spread to even the building’s exterior. He flew as fast as he could, and stopped at the furthest end of the plaza near the remains of City Hall. It had nearly been reduced to a plot of land, and he turned and pulled back as hard as he could. The fatigue was making him lose control, as segments of the clock tower began breaking off.

Bowser leapt through the doorway.

Beret was in so much agony that it was almost impossible to notice, and his eyes rolled to the back of his head. He could hear Bowser’s footsteps, and he could hear the air move as he propelled closer to him. Beret kept pulling. He forced himself to…

And the tendrils broke through the stones and bricks. Beret fell to his back, and the clock tower collapsed forward, landing on top of Bowser.

Beret wasn’t sure what happened after that. He only found himself limping aimlessly after he woke up, and the air was covered in smog. Beret was barely able to stay conscious, and he wasn’t sure if he was anymore. The Magikoopa was wheezing, but he hoped he could keep moving longer. He hoped it was in the direction of where Biretta was heading with Mario, to the airships he was persuaded into locking away.

Soon, it all settled…

Bowser lifted the roof of the clock tower, and Beret snapped back into awareness. His arms were throbbing, but he was far beyond the peak of his fury, and he hurled it with indomitable strength. The roof slid across the ground, and Beret was forced to jump through the opening in the hat-like structure. It stopped moving by the time Beret’s feet touched the edge.

Bowser was already there by the time he did…and he struck him with a powerful jab. Beret’s jaw was thoroughly shattered, and half of head was caved in. Even bone was exposed, and his face was mangled even more when he was struck again.

Bowser would have hit him harder, if not for the fatigue in his arms. He grabbed Beret’s suit by the collar, and continued wailing on his face, before it completely ruptured. Bowser then uppercutted him, hard enough that his hat was thrown alongside with his blood chunks of his brain. Beret landed on his back, but Bowser wasn’t done. He lifted him back to his feet, then he struck him again, and again, and again, and again, until Beret dropped stomach-side down.

Bowser decided it was time to finish him off, and he raised Beret by his neck. One of his eyes was gone, and the other one was so red that it was impossible to see his iris anymore. His face had been so brutalized…and he was dead. Bowser had finally killed the delusional leader of that cult, and he tossed his body aside.

Something began to frustrate him, however, and it was the lack of catharsis. He had murdered his son’s killer, even if Roy wasn’t his actual son, and he found himself walking to the corpse. Bowser kept staring at it emptily, as more blood continued pouring out.

As cautiously as one could, Mario slowly turned the corner with Cappy still on his head. All that was there were embers falling, and corpses sprawling the streets. In another world, Mario knew they would be alive, and injured at most. “No sign of Iggy.” He turned to Biretta behind him. “We should be safe,” Mario told her.

“As safe as we’re going to be,” Cappy then said. More of the Bonnetors in their group had been killed, and at least half of them were alive.

“Our destination is close,” Biretta told him and Mario, after an uncomfortable silence. “We’ll have to get moving.”

Mario nodded, and kept an eye out for any possible attackers. “Alright,” he said to the Bonnetors. “Let's go.” Every last soul proceeded carefully after that, and Mario continued to stay alert.

A Bullet Bill soon appeared in the sky, but it didn’t notice anyone in the group. Instead, it crashed into a nearby building and exploded on contact, making the Bonnetors scream.

Mario doubted it would attract any more attention. There had been several Bullet Bills scattering across the whole of Bonneton. All he could hope for was that Luigi was safely away from the city, and he wouldn’t leave the Cap Kingdom without him. “As soon as you guys are out of here, I need to find my brother,” Mario said to Biretta. “He’s out there. You’re gonna have to go on without me.”

“I understand. If the circ*mstances were different, I probably would have looked for mine.” A part of Biretta was certain he was still out there. “Perhaps I should when I have the chance.”

“But what about the others,” Cappy asked. “Where would they go?”

Mario knew the Bonnetors that were loyal to the cult would still be in danger if they were taken to the Mushroom Kingdom. “New Donk City. It has to be there.” It was the only place they could go. “I can talk to the mayor. I’ve known her for a long time. I can talk her into letting you stay.”

“But you’d have to stay here to look for your brother,” Biretta pointed out.

Mario then realized he would have to risk leaving Luigi behind. “I know…I’m sorry about Beret. I thought he would be a monster, but I was wrong…”

“Beret and I always wanted what was best for our people, but with the way we handled things…I just wish we could have found common ground. Instead, I betrayed my father and incited an insurrection…I don’t want to believe that Beret is dead. He can’t be. Even if those magics touched him, I’m certain he would start seeking us by now.”

“Biretta…Beret’s not a Magikoopa, is he?” Mario had already pieced together that he was always a Bonnetor, and her brother by a different name.

Right beside the site of the Magikoopa’s death was a bowl hat with a purple ribbon left abandoned. Slowly, it began to reveal its eyes, and he desperately prayed that Bowser wouldn’t catch him. He needed to get away and find his sister, and he was at least relieved he had the chance to do that. That’s when he heard Bowser’s screams, and he quickly phased into the ground, knowing exactly where to go.

Against their will, Luigi and the Boo were escorted through a street in Bonneton. There were distant screams and explosions, and the sound of crackling flames as they passed bodies of Bowser’s soldiers and Beret’s militia.

The Boo was remorseful over how unnecessary that death and destruction was, and he yearned to go back to a more peaceful time.

“Oi, stop dawdling,” Scruff then told him with the smugness he had, still in the body of Captain Toad.

Luigi stayed quiet, as an inhabited Koopa Troopa and a Bonnetor possessing the green-spotted Toad watched his every move from behind. He looked over at Larry, whose face twisted in pain from his broken arm, which was bruised and swollen. Larry then looked at him too, and briefly scowled before shaking his head and rolling his eyes. Luigi wondered if he should say anything, but it was far too late for that. He was all alone, and Mario was nowhere in sight.

“So, what do we do now,” asked one of the possessed soldiers.

“I wouldn’t worry about it,” Scruff answered. “Besides, the most we gotta do is wait it out. As soon as Bowser and his troops are all gone, we’ll waltz our way back to City Hall. It’s no big deal.”

Larry let out a bitter laugh. “You’re serious? City Hall’s gone.” Then he was pushed, and he landed on his broken arm.

“Shut your mouth,” shouted the Paratroopa who shoved him.

Larry kept laughing in frustration. “Bowser had the whole place blown up by Bullet Bills. You’ve got a lot of nerve if you think it’s still there.” Then that same Paratroopa put their foot on his head. “If my arm wasn’t a mess, I’d burn down all of you!”

“You’d be lucky to try,” Beret said, stepping up to the Koopaling. “Besides, most of the lads are using your soldiers' bodies. They might get caught in the crossfire.” He then spoke to the Paratroopa. “Get ‘em up.” Then they forcefully lifted him to his feet, before looking at Luigi. “What are you staring at?”

Soon, they all passed the corpse of a Magikoopa with a wand still in their hand. It started to glow, and a familiar face appeared in the alley in front of Scruff. The projection of Bowser soon said something with an emptiness in his eyes. “Beret’s dead. The guy’s been torn to pieces.”

Scruff’s demeanor completely changed after that.

“We won’t be seeing a monster like him again…” Bowser then showed emotion. “Now we can celebrate! This is a victory for our kingdom! That cult is finished! Roy has been avenged!”

There were cheers from all of Bowser’s soldiers in Bonneton, and some even celebrated by shouting and chanting, “For Roy!”

The only one who hadn’t, however, was Wendy, who had spent the entire battle on the airship in shame.

“No…” Scruff collapsed to the ground, devastated by the news. “No, no, no,” he whimpered. “That wasn’t his name, you daft idiot.”

“Now, it’s time to regroup,” said Bowser. “Everyone, march to the main streets of Bonneton, and head towards City Hall. I’ll be waiting there.” And like that, his projection disappeared.

Larry was too preoccupied by the strange way Scruff was acting. “What is even happening right now? You’re making it seem like you care about the guy.”

The Paratroopa squeezed his broken arm. “I told you to shut it.”

“Oi, keep your hands off the goods,” Scruff told them while getting to his feet. He forced himself to hide away his grief. “Well, it seems that the plan’s completely fallen apart.”

“What do we do know,” asked the Bonnetor occupying the Toad in glasses.

“We have to get out of here. It’s all that matters.” Scruff had no family left, and no reason to stay.

“She could still be out there, you know,” the Boo suddenly told him, pitying him for once. “I’m not gonna give up on her. You don’t have to either.”

The Boo was obviously talking about Biretta, and the fact that he mentioned her put Scruff in an even worse mood. “What’s even the point? You turned my whole family against me.”

“You know it’s not that simple.”

“Let me tell you something that is.” Scruff decided to give out his next order. “If a single word comes out of this Boo’s mouth, you have my permission to kill the rest of the Toad Brigade.”

Luigi didn’t want anyone else to die. “You don’t have to,” he begged Scruff.

“I might. This city was fine just the way it was, until those fanatics took over, and you decided to side with them.”

“I-I didn’t know what else to do.” Luigi wasn’t sure if he should speak anymore. He was worried that Scruff would snap, and follow through on the threat he promised, or that Gooigi would wind up retaliating.

“Oi, Boo. Why don’t you tell him what happened to Kolorado? Maybe it’ll snap him back to reality.” Scruff doubted that Luigi was better than the cult he was siding with.

Kolorado was a famous explorer who lived on the same landmark as the Mario Brothers, and Larry wasn’t sure how he was even related. “The archaeologist,” he asked. “What’s he got to do with this?” After the night Mario attacked one of Bowser’s castles, he heard about a miracle that happened shortly after, and that Boo was starting to become familiar. “Wait a minute. You’re the same Boo that hung around that Magikoopa. You were his friend…The hat. That lucky little hat.”

All Larry needed to see was the expression on that Boo’s face, and when he saw that exact same look from Scruff, it was enough to piece it all together. He was almost overwhelmed by the nonstop twists and turns, to the point where it was amusing. “What am I hearing right now?” Larry was close to laughing again. “Are you kidding me? This whole time, you weren’t just the mayor of Bonneton. Your son was the leader of that cult! He started it! He wasn’t even the Magikoopa!”

Larry wasn’t even attacked that time, or even told to stay quiet. Instead, everyone who worked under the exiled mayor just watched him in disbelief. That time, he broke down into hysterical laughter.

“That can’t be true, sir,” asked the Bonnetor possessing the Toad in glasses. “Is it?”

An enraged Koopa stepped forward. “You told us that the cult had Gatsby hostage! Why did you lie to us?!”

“Maybe in a sense, I never was,” Scruff said, and to him, his son had abandoned that name.

“And what about his mother,” the Koopa demanded to know. “Did something happen to her as well?”

“Who’s Gatsby,” Luigi asked.

The Boo had no reason to stay quiet anymore. “Biretta’s older brother.”

“Huh. That makes sense.” The name he used even sounded similar.

Most of Scruff’s rebels were beginning to turn on him, and he was even being surrounded by a few of them. “You better not be trying anything funny, now,” he warned.

“We could say the same about you,” said the same Koopa as before. “Besides, there’s fourteen of us, and most of these bodies are combat-trained.”

Scruff was too ashamed to admit…Until something changed, after remembering what the Boo said about his daughter. “You want me to admit it, then? Fine. Gatsby is Beret. He even based it off his pretty little sister, and the lot of you never managed to figure that out?! The world is fine! There’s nothing wrong with it! I loved my son. It’s a shame he turned out the way he did, but right now, we need to get out of this place.”

“We were spending all this time trying to get in.”

“And what’s the point in staying? Bonneton’s a mess. There’s no way to save it anymore.”

The Boo worried that things would begin to escalate, to the point where Captain Toad would be killed in the process. “You guys want your airships? Biretta’s the only one who can get you to them.”

Scruff scoffed. “With that fanatical magic of yours, I imagine. Where’d you put them?”

“They’re at the college. If she’s still alive, that’s probably where she’s going.” In their situation, the Boo didn’t matter who he was reasoning with. However, Scruff was surprised, and he probably wondered why that place was chosen.

“Isn’t Iggy taking up the north side of the city,” asked another one of the Bonnetors.

It was the same one who warned Scruff that Bowser was coming, and he hated how he was warned at the last minute like before. “You need to stop doing that,” he demanded.

“Like you’re in a position to talk,” the Koopa said, smugly.

“And you’re just going to betray me like that?”

“Exactly. All of us are.”

Scruff had never expected that they would turn on him so quickly. “Fine, but once we’ve escaped the city, we’re done.” He was tired of all the abandonments and betrayals.

“I’d like that.”

Even after all the abuse Luigi was dealt, he was starting to see Scruff for the grieving broken man he was. The Boo could only see an arrogant one, who was desperately trying to cling to the ways of his old reality. Larry smirked, and thought he was more pathetic and delusional than the king that was meant to be his father figure.

Scruff then saw that. “What, is that supposed to be a smirk?” He walked over to him, and tapped his broken arm. “Try to remember you’re a bargaining chip. If Iggy’s planning to be a thorn in our side, we may as well pluck him out with you.”

“And what makes you think he’ll reason with you,” Larry asked.

“I don’t know. Care to find out?” Scruff had nothing to lose.

Then Larry suddenly became tense, knowing all too well that Iggy snapped a long time ago.

The streets had gotten even quieter, and there were no more soldiers or explosions appearing at every turn.

“We should be close,” Biretta then said to Mario and Cappy.

They turned another corner, and the site of all those bodies was no longer surprising…However, something about them was very off. “Why are there so many? Were they part of the militia?"

“I can’t tell.” Biretta’s only priority was getting her people to safety.

Mario went to investigate one of the corpses, that of a Koopa Troopa who had been brutally bisected. It seemed that something had bitten down on the lower half of their body, as their entrails spilled out.

The site still made Cappy queasy, and he wished he could escape the that he was trapped in just to look away from it. But he agreed with Mario. “There’s something very off about this,” he commented, keeping his eyes tightly shut.

“Could they be Bowser’s soldiers,” Biretta asked.

Mario couldn’t be entirely sure, but the numbers in his army were drastically higher. “I think they might be. Something’s not right.” Mario then spotted a magic dome on the furthest end of the street, covering a series of undamaged buildings. That was most likely the university, where the airships were being held. “Is that the place?”

“It is,” Biretta answered. “We don’t have much time. We need to get moving now.” And she was worried that whatever killed those soldiers would likely hunt them down, and all the people she was meant to protect. Several had already died by the time they reached that point, and she was wracked with so much guilt, she wondered if she should join them.

“Biretta, it’s gonna be fine,” Mario promised her.

“I wish that were true…”

PROTAGONISTS: Series of the Convergence World - Chapter 37 - MatthewMcBacon (2024)
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