The Perfect Gift

Super Mario Fan Fiction!

At the announcement of Peach's holiday party, Bowser decides that this year he will take part in the holiday gift giving, by finding the perfect gift for Princess Peach! Something that will beat anything that plumber has to offer.

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1. Chapter One

Snowflakes dropped from the clouds softly, some gathering in sleepy clumps as they fell to the earth.

            Down below, in the Mushroom Kingdom, the sleepy little Toad Town inhabitants began to awaken to the white light of a winter morning.

            Window shutters slipped open, some inhabitants staring out in wonder, whilst others cursed the heaps of snow that fell upon their heads from the rooftops. Tiny toad girls and boys began getting dressed immediately, snow coating the streets thick, promising a long day of fun and laughter.

            In the castle that towered over the town like a watchful mother, with shining grey stone and red-pink towers, a princess was now blinking in the light that flooded into her bedroom from the sealed balcony doors.

            She released a small yawn, stretching her arms above her head daintily, wearing a sleepy, tranquil smile.

            Princess Peach slipped out of bed, tucked feet into her pink house slippers, and wandered over to the windows where bright light beckoned.

            “Oh my.”  She murmured, blue eyes wide in wonder as she opened the window doors.  Peach hugged herself as a cold breeze swept over her, snowflakes catching in her hair and kissing her face as she stood there, and stared out across her kingdom.

            It was beautiful; the whole world was made of pure white, and the tiny snow stars that slipped down from the clouds above, sparkled like crystal as they fell.

            Pink lips formed a pleased smile.  The snow had finally fallen, and just in time too.  Tonight she would celebrate the Christmas season with her friends, family, and beloved citizens.

            Toadsworth had already sent out the invitations a week ago, and everyone in the kingdom was already abuzz about the party.  It would be a huge gathering, and with the snow, it would be even more festive.  Last year, the clouds had given them an ice storm that had made travel quite difficult, but this year a gentle snow would open up the night.  It was perfect.

            Peach couldn’t wait for tonight.  She openly laughed out loud in happiness when she imagined the dancing…and her hero in a sleek black tux waiting to spin her around the floor.  She could practically feel his large hands covering her own slender fingers, so warm and gentle.

            A blush graced the princess’s cheeks as she thought about those big blue eyes.  She giggled out loud, and shook her head.  There was no time for day dreaming right now.   

She walked over to her wardrobe, pulling out a pink dress with flourish.  She had to get ready, and today was a big day.  Preparations for tonight would keep her high on her toes.

            I positively cannot wait!  She thought happily.

 

00oo00oo00oo00

 

            Parakarry’s wings flapped easily as he journeyed across the skies, finally out of the snow’s reach.  He had sort of a love-hate relationship with these cold elements.  He enjoyed the beauty the snow brought the world, and marveled at every tiny star that fell upon his beak…but he dreaded flying in it.  Even docked out in his weather gear, thick boots and a fuzzy scarf (a gift from his loving mother), he didn’t have an easy time in the mornings.

            As usual, he dutifully delivered every letter in his satchel, even dropping a few early holiday packages, before pointing himself to the west.

            He sighed, dreading this part of his morning above all others. 

            Parakarry began the long flight to the Darklands, hoping that he would get in and out without too much of a hassle.  He recalled last week’s journey and swallowed hard in remembrance.  He had accidently dropped a letter into the chain chomp pens and had been forced to fetch it himself.

            It had ended better than he thought it would, with just some broken goggles and a few shredded wing feathers.  He didn’t want to think about how it could have turned out if he had been unable to fly out.

            Usually Parakarry would just deliver to the toad citizens, and to the koopa village to the east, but unfortunately he had received a letter in his own mailbox one day, and the situation had changed immediately.

            He had been informed that the Darklands’s needed a postal flier and that he fit the bill.  Parakarry had literarily fainted when he discovered the crisp red envelope with the letter tucked inside.

            He had been at this for a month now and still wasn’t used to it, he wasn’t sure he would ever get used to it. The winged koopa sighed as he flew away from the wintery wonderland.  Cold snowfall would always beat hot smog clouds as a preference.

            After several minutes of shell breaking flying power, not wanting to be threatened with death for being late, he finally found himself over the dark landscape that was the Darklands.  Appropriately named, he thought unhappily, as he carefully flew over the magma pits that made up most of the place.

            Eventually the black stone, spiked towers, and tall thick battlements that was Bowser’s castle, appeared in his line of vision, and he gulped. 

            Ease into it, he told himself, easy does it.  In and out, then you’re done.

            Parakarry swooped down to the bridge where two guards stood at the massive metal door that led into the dark castle.  They had seen him fly in long ago, and stood expectantly as he made a safe, albeit clumsy, landing on the bridge.

            “M-mail call.”  The koopa called out, trying his best to calm his trembling.  He could hear lava bubbling underneath the bridge as he stepped forward, and tried his best not to imagine what it would be like to fall in.

            The two koopapatrols glanced at one another after he had spoken and one moved to open the gate to the castle. He began turning a lever nearby that turned a large wheel.  There was a creaking as huge black chains pulled open the door.

            Parakarry stood there for a long time, “Uh…aren’t you going to take it in?”

            The two guards looked at each other again and began laughing, “No way bro, the one to his right said, “Today it’s all yours.”

            Parakarry’s mouth gaped open.  He had never been inside the castle before, ever, and hadn’t planned on it.  He fumbled with his shoulder bag, “I…I really shouldn’t…you see, I still have to deliver something important, life savingly so, and I don’t have time to mingle.”

            The guard on the left snorted, “If you want to live, you might want to get inside pretty soon.  I don’t think his majesty would appreciate any tardiness.”

            “Yeah, he’s pretty stoked, ya know the holiday thing and all?  Brings out the worst in him,” Guard number two said cheerfully, “Off you go.”

            I’m going to die. Parakarry thought, wings trembling.  He began to count his regrets as he stepped past the guards and onto the garnet-red carpet that led the way to his certain doom.   There goes that paid vacation he had saved up for…

 

00oo00oo00oo00

 

 

            Bowser was fit to be tied.  Another quake erupted as the king of the koopas stomped his clawed foot onto the ground once again, “I’m waiting!” 

            There was a frantic knocking at the door to the throne room, and the guards quickly moved to open it.  Almost immediately two parakoopa’s flew in, both gasping at the weight they carried between them.

            The plate containing the sizzling hot medium-rare steak that Bowser had ordered was soon presented to him.  He snorted at the weakly fluttering troopas, both struggling to keep the huge plate in the air, “What took you so long?”  They both released their breath at the absence of rage in their king’s voice, though a hint of irritation remained.

            “A-apologies sire!” They both squeaked, and visibly sighed as the burden they had carried was released into Bowser’s grip.  Both quickly, but with composure, made their exit.

            Bowser immediately began chomping away at his breakfast, bits of meaty chunks flying free.  Finishing quickly and feeling sated, the massive koopa tossed the plate somewhere behind him.  He ignored the smashing sound, “Alright, where’s today’s Mushroomian news?”  He gritted his teeth, picking out bits of meat out of them with a sharp claw, “Let’s see if a good opportunity has presented itself today.”

            With good timing, there was a soft knock at the door, barely heard in the recesses of the large room.  Bowser raised an eyebrow at the guards.

            The guards at the door moved to open it once more, revealing a frightened looking Parakarry.

            Bowser grinned wickedly when he saw him, “Well if it isn’t my new postal carrier slash, accomplice to my enemy, what brings you to my domain?”

            Parakarry visibly paled at the king’s words and took a single step forward, not willing to get any closer, “G-good morning.  Just…got the paper for you, like you requested.”  He fumbled around in his satchel, papers slipping out of his fingers back into the bag as he nervously searched, finally he pulled the newspaper out, with a relieved exhale.

            Bowser beckoned him forward with a clawed hand, looking impatient.  Parakarry hurriedly flew up to meet him, presenting him with the newspaper carefully.  He flinched when his hand brushed the huge king’s wrist, grateful it wasn’t a claw, and flew back a wing stroke, “A-another letter, duly delivered, a postman’s job is never done,” he finished, finding comfort in his usual end-of-delivery quote.

            “Yeah, yeah.” Bowser snorted, “Now leave before I roast you.”

            At that Parakarry made his speedy exit, swiftly and without looking back. 

            The front page greeted Bowser, and he rolled his eyes at the picture of smiling toads standing at the front of Peach’s castle.  He hated them so much.  He wasn’t sure if it was their overly cheery personalities or the fact that they were so small and had the most annoying high-pitched voices. 

            The text at the top was in bold, above the picture and caught his attention. 

 

Princess to Welcome all to Christmas Ball

 

            “Another party?”  Bowser rolled his eyes, “Who didn’t see that coming? Phff.”

            He turned the page and stiffened at what he found.  Bowser gritted his teeth at the image of Mario and Peach standing side by side in the entry room inside Peach’s castle.  In the background, many toads were working to set up the party, hanging banners and paper snowflakes.

            He eyed Peach, his eyes softening at the sparkle of joy in her serene blue eyes.  She was wearing her usual style of dress, but her curls were bound back into a ponytail, revealing snowflake earrings instead of the blue pearls.  Bowser saw the flush of color in her cheeks, even with the gray print of the paper, and glared at his nemesis, Mario, with intense hatred.

            Bowser’s gaze seared when he paused on the smug little plumber, who looked very pleased to be standing so close to his future queen. 

            With a snarl, he balled the paper up into his fist and smashed it into papery pulp.  Bowser dropped it when he finished, the newspaper rolling away from his feet to stop at the feet of someone who had just entered the room.

            Kammy koopa blinked down at the ball of paper that had rolled to meet her and picked it up, “Good morning sire, I see you have just finished your morning reading.”

            Bowser snorted, smoke drifting from his nostrils, something he did when he was mildly irritated, “Nothing interesting.”  He crossed his arms over his chest and took a seat at his throne.

            Knowing well that her king was upset over something, Kammy freed the paper from its tight balled up state, and tried her best to flatten out the wrinkles.  Once it was readable again, she held it up to her face.

            She read everything there was to read about the ball and turned the page.  She nodded more to herself, when she saw the picture of Mario and Peach, deciding this was the picture that was bugging her king.  Finished, Kammy used her wand to incinerate the paper, hating litter, and walked over to Bowser.

            Before she could try and offer up words of comfort (even though most likely she would just find a way to anger him further), he spoke, “I hate him.”

            Bowser stood, fists clenched, and Kammy wisely side stepped to allow him room, “That plumber is going to get her something with his heroes’ discount or whatever, and she’s going to fall in love with him- again.”

            He let out a roar, “Gah! I hate this time of the year.” 

            Imagining her and Mario sharing a heart felt embrace after the man presented his crummy second-rate gift to his Peach had him simmering with rage.             

            “If I may offer a word.”  Kammy said, “My lord…why don’t you gift the princess with something?  Perhaps a jewelry item or…”

            Bowser blinked, “What?”  He looked down at her with a snort, “You know I don’t do the celebrate-the-holidays thing.  It’s all a bunch of phooey.”

            “Just think of this as another opportunity,” Kammy suggested, “Like a birthday party, except instead of an elaborate kidnapping scheme, you could surprise her with a simple gift.”

            He looked thoughtful, “Huh, yeah, maybe.”   He laughed gruffly, “Haha, I bet I could get a better gift than that pudgy plumber.  Make him look like a total loser.”

            The magikoopa brightened, “Yes sire, I’m sure we could find something.  You’re king after all, there is nothing you can’t have.  Mario surely can’t access anything of real worth.”

            Bowser grinned widely, “Ah haggy, I love your sometimes-brilliant ideas.  They really brighten up my day.”

            She beamed, “Of course sire.”

 

00oo00oo00oo00

 

            Bowser entered the mall, causing screams to erupt from all around.  He ignored the fleeing toads, traitorous koopas, and shy guys that began to flee the area. 

            “How rude.”  Kammy commented, watching a shy guy trip over his own feet trying to get away.

            He ignored her and moved to a nearby check-out counter, where a female toad wearing a seasonal peppermint striped cap, quivered at the sight of him, “Hey, you, girly, where’s the jewelry department?”

            “S-second floor….” She stammered, ducking down behind the counter.

            Bowser was used to cowering toads and just turned away, “Okay, let’s find the best darn gift possible in this stupid place.”

            “Aye, aye sir.”  Kammy replied cheerfully, secretly looking forward to checking out some jewelry for her own use on the side.

            The Darklands wasn’t exactly the hot spot for gift shopping, because there wasn’t really a suitable location for a mall…so most of their goods came from outside the kingdom.  When Bowser needed something, he just moved into the neighboring kingdom, Peach’s of course, to take what he needed, with the five-finger discount.

            After Bowser scared the spots off a few more toads with a thundering roar, they moved to the elevators where it was apparent, once they got there, that none would be able to hold Bowser’s bulk.  He grumbled, crossing his arms, “Stupid inconvenient toads, I hate walking.”

            “We could just take the escalator?”  Kammy suggested, pointing her wand at the two machines nearby, toads trying to run up one, deciding they didn’t want to go down anymore.

            Bowser growled, but followed her.  He glared at the escalator with disdain when they reached it, “These things are so slow,” he complained, but got on anyways.  Somehow, even with his great weight, they managed to not break it.

            On the second floor, more shoppers fled screaming at the sight of the two baddies, and Bowser blew fire in response, torching a potted plant nearby, “Haha, yes! Run, cowards!  The koopa king is here!”

            It didn’t take long for them to find the jewelry department, a glass covered room with rhinestone snowflakes hanging from the ceiling.   More people ran away of course, mainly toads wearing too much perfume with high-pitched screams.  He flinched at the noise, reminded of how much he detested the sound of toads. 

            Bowser opened the glass door a bit too hard, the whole thing breaking free off its hinges. He just tossed it behind him, rewarded with a few startled shrieks as glass shattered against a wall.

            Inside, toad and koopa workers cowered behind jewelry displays, and above a whimpering parakoopa held onto a large hanging snowflake.  Bowser went over to the first glass case, eliciting a squeak from the lady at the counter who ducked behind it, as he peered within, eyes scrunched up in the brightness of the shining trinkets inside.

            After a few moments, he moved to another display case, unimpressed so far, “Hey, you!”  He yelled at one of the workers, a tiny brunette toad girl who looked ready to pass out as he looked her way, “Where’s all the good stuff?”

            “S-s-sir,” She swallowed, “We h-have nothing else…all of our items are on d-display.”

            He let out a small roar, causing the toad girl to crumple backwards in a faint, which he ignored, “There is nothing in here that is good enough for my Peachy.”

            Kammy moved to find a way to quickly calm him before he hurt himself and her, with all the glass in the room.  She didn’t want to have to go to the hospital again, “Perhaps something different, something unique.”

            Bowser snorted, looking down at her expectantly, “I’m waiting, out with it.”

            “Flowers!”  She blurted out, the first thing that came to mind.

            He looked confused, “Huh?  There’s nothing unique about a stupid flower.”

            “Just a moment,” she tried to think of something quick, knowing well how impatient Bowser was.  A few seconds later she smiled triumphantly, “I have it!”

           

00oo00oo00oo00

 

Back at the castle, Bowser found himself in a room he had never been in before, and released a loud sneeze, shooting out a small flame, “Gah! Stupid dust!”

“Bless you.” Kammy offered, currently climbing up a ladder to reach books at the top shelf of the bookcase she was searching.   She swept her gaze over the book titles and finally paused with her claw on the binding of one, “Got it.”

She headed back down, holding up a dark blue book with silver writing on the cover, “Here we are sire.”

Bowser looked unimpressed, “We came all the way over here for a crummy old book?”

Kammy felt insulted, this being from her own collection, but didn’t show it, “My lord, this has the answer you need.  The perfect gift for a princess.”

He brightened immediately and reached for the book, “Gimme!”  He took it from her enthusiastically, almost knocking her off her feet.

She stumbled but righted herself with a sigh, and watched curiously as he scanned the book title.

“Magically formed plant life.”  He read out loud, “and other unnatural occurrences.”  He frowned, “This has pictures in it right?”

She nodded and he continued, flipping the book open, his face crumpling up as dust scattered.  Thankfully he didn’t sneeze, or the book might have caught on fire.  Bowser began turning pages, and Kammy flinched each time he accidently clipped a page with a claw, ripping it free from its binding.

He paused on a page, and grinned suddenly, “Haha!! Perfect!  This will knock her socks off.”

Kammy stood on her toes, trying to get a glance at the page, “What is it sire?”

He returned the book to her, “Check this baby out.”

She stared at the page in disbelief for a long moment, “Er, are you sure this is the one you want?”

Bowser paused, eyes narrowed, “Out with it haggy.”

“Well, this specimen is located on a very tall mountain peak…err known for being un-scalable and home to various ice beasts.”

“Pfft.” He snorted, “That’s it?  I can take em.  Fire beats ice.”

“Yes,” She agreed, still looking nervous, “However, it might be harder to get your flame going at this altitude and the temperature is quite cold.”

“Whatever.”  Bowser grumbled, “Now go get packed, be downstairs in five, or I’ll remind you how hot my fire is.”

She sighed, “Very well sir.”  Kammy turned to leave, but was stopped.

“Hey, while you’re at it…” Bowser snorted, “Go fetch Kamek, he needs to get out more often.”

“I’m sure he is quite busy at the moment.”  Kammy started weakly.

She quieted at Bowser’s firm glare and sighed, “Right away.”

 

00oo00oo00oo00

 

The magikoopa walked down a less traveled hallway, unsurprised at the lack of traffic.  She knew how Kamek hated being bothered, so he was not appreciative of anyone walking about outside his room when he was busy doing whatever he liked doing with his spare time.

She found his door at the end of the hallway, the only tower room in this wing of the castle, and knocked lightly but firmly on the wood door.

Kammy heard something hit the ground with a thud, followed by a muttered curse.  There was a moment of silence and suddenly the door opened.  She stood face to face with an irritated looking magikoopa, eyes narrowed behind his glasses.  Kamek blinked in surprise when he saw her.

She grinned, “Good afternoon, King Bowser asked me to fetch you.”

He didn’t like the gleeful look on her face, and frowned, “What did you do this time?” 

“He wants a special gift for Peach so we’re going to take a hike up a mountain.”  She beamed, “And he wants you to come along for the ride.”

Kamek groaned, “Which Mountain?”

 

00oo00oo00oo00

 

Freezing winds pounded at the three as they made their way up the mountainside.  Bowser was up ahead, stubbornly keeping a strong pace, head bowed to combat the raging icy gusts that tried to push him back.

Behind him, his two advisors stumbled, brooms in hand, trying to keep at Bowser’s back, lest they be blown backward and off a cliff. 

“Are you trying to get us all killed!?”  Kamek yelled over the screaming gusts.

“This wasn’t my idea!” 

“You gave him the book!”

Kammy glared in response, even though in the blinding white of the snowstorm that pelted them, she doubted he would even see it.  She didn’t respond, because honestly, she didn’t know what to say.  All she knew was that she sorely regretted ever handing the book over to Bowser.  She should have just offered to make him something with her own magic.

Not paying attention, and struggling in the white storm, the two felt themselves bump into something.  Bowser had stopped, and they took this time to cower behind his bulk, their king providing a comforting shield against the elements.

“Hey!”  Bowser shouted over the screaming gusts, “I think I see something!” 

Soon enough, as they glanced around him, and into the distance, they could barely make out a large grey mass in the distance.

“I see it!”  Kammy yelled over the storm’s howl, “We’ve found the caves! Hurry my lord, before we are iced over!”

Eventually, and to his advisor’s immense relief, they were inside and out of the ice storm.

“Sweety mercy.”  Kamek moaned, taking this time to lean against the cavern wall and shake snow free form his cloak, “I hate the cold.”

He wanted nothing more than to be back in his room, finishing up his project.  Kamek was certain that Lord Bowser would be more than pleased with his newest invention, and he had been so anxious to finish it…but of course, Kammy had to drag him into yet another messy idea of hers. 

Kammy was oblivious to the glare he shot at her back, and lifted her wand up and muttered a few words.  In seconds a warm golden light radiated from her wand’s tip, and lit up their surroundings. 

Once they began walking, they discovered how big the cavern really was.  From outwards looking in, it didn’t seem that large, but the stone ground descended, making the ceiling below stretch up above them as they walked forward and deeper into the mountain.

“It’s freezing in here, when will we get there?”  Bowser complained after several minutes of walking, “I can’t feel my toes!”

Kammy pulled the book from her cloak sleeve.  She turned to the page she had marked earlier and cleared her throat, “Let’s see here….”

Curious, Kamek glanced over her shoulder at the page she was staring at.  He visibly paled when he read the title, “The Ice King’s Treasure?  This is suicide!” 

Bowser turned to him, and snorted, warm steam escaping his nostrils, “If you have something to say, then say it now.”  He narrowed his eyes, “I don’t want to run into any unpleasant surprises.”

Kammy spoke first, casting a dirty look at the other magikoopa, “Sire, it’s only an old legend, the king is not around to guard his treasure, he died thousands of years ago.”

“If you read the whole story.” Kamek said tightly, in response, “You would discover that he was an established wizard who didn’t appreciate anyone entering his kingdom or taking his things.” 

She smirked in response, “If he was so mighty, then why did he die?  Even we know longevity spells.”

Because,” He replied, “He was mad.  His obsession with his treasure drove him to sacrifice himself for it.  He fortified it with his own magic to keep it preserved.  Knowing that it would never last forever, he decided to sacrifice his life, and released that energy, to change it.  To create an everlasting form, ice that could never be melted, containing his essence.”

“All for a stupid flower?”  Bowser laughed.

Kamek grew silent and Kammy took this time to scan the rest of the text on the page, overcome by curiosity.  After a long while she spoke, “I see.”

“What?”  Bowser asked, standing over them.  He couldn’t read the expression on Kammy’s face, and it was driving him crazy, “Tell me!”

She looked somber, “Erm well…it wasn’t the flower, well yes it was the flower…what I mean is.”

“A girl.”  Kamek finished, “He was in love with a girl.”

Bowser groaned, “I should have known this was going to turn into some sappy romance novel.  I hate reading!”

Kammy sighed, “Well, to cut to the chase, she was a poor villager who stupidly climbed the mountain after a goat, he fell in love with her, and she grew ill and died a month later.  The rose was his gift to her. She had known she wouldn’t live to see spring again, so he had created the rose, from snow and ice.  Knowing how she had cherished it…after her death, he sought to make it an immortal item; one that would never die.”

Bowser grinned, not affected by the story’s deeper theme, “So, this thing is a forever deal?  Haha, if Mario got her a stupid flower, the thing would wilt in under a week.  He can’t beat this!”

Kammy rolled her eyes (making certain she was faced away from her king before doing so of course) and tucked the book away.  She wouldn’t admit that the story did have an affect on her a bit.  Kammy secretly had a stash of romance novels under her bed, so she enjoyed the legend, even for its tragic end story…after all, most had such drama tucked between the pages.  That’s what made them so interesting.

“Keep in mind, that although it will live forever, it is still ice, and can still be broken.”  Kamek said as they started walking again, “The king created guards to keep his treasure safe.”  His expression was grim, “This is not going to be easy.”

Bowser guffawed, “Yeah, right!  We got fire, muscles, and magic, they don’t stand a chance.”

            At that, there was a great trembling beneath their feet that had his two servants tumbling to the ground.  Kammy’s wand flew free from her grip and hit the wall, extinguishing its glow, and casting them into darkness.

            When the quake ceased, the silence was pierced by groans as everyone stood up.  In the darkness, Kammy reached for the glasses on her face and was relieved to feel no cracks.  In better spirits she wiped them off on her cloak.  She heard Kamek groan again, in distress, and guessed he hadn’t been as fortunate.

            “Lights? NOW?”  Bowser said loudly, tone laced with impatience.

            Feeling around, on the ground, Kammy found her wand just as a yellow glow flooded out from another source to light up the cavern.  She stood, turning to look at Kamek, who had his wand out and lit.  She noticed the large crack on his left spectacle and smirked.

            Kamek noticed the impertinent expression she gave him, and narrowed his eyes in return.  One would think that because they were both of the same species, and on the same side, that they would get along like peaches and crème, but unfortunately a fierce rivalry existed between the two.  Whether Bowser noticed this or not, or cared to note it, was a mystery.

            The koopa king was currently disappearing around a bend in the tunnel, and the two raced to keep up, trying their best to ignore the other’s presence, though with the tunnel narrowing, it was becoming increasingly difficult.

            Eventually they found the tunnel spreading out again and soon, to their surprise, found brightness up ahead.  As they neared the end, it was soon apparent that they were about to enter a massive underground room, which was somehow alit with white light.

            Where the light cascaded from, was made obvious once they entered the area.  There were many wide-gaping holes coming from the ceiling, along with some smaller cracks, far up, where light fell down along with the occasional dusting of snow.  It was not overly bright, the room so massive in size that it was hard for the light to reach every corner of it.

They had entered from above, and found a great stone staircase to their left, cut from the actual cave wall it seemed, leading downwards to the ground floor.  Bowser looked up and around, appraising his surroundings, “Finally!” He grumbled, “Let’s get this stupid flower and get out.  At this rate we’re going to miss the party.”  Bowser began heading down.

His advisors followed, Kammy looked around in awe at their surroundings as they descended.  This place was truly a marvel, and she pondered how long it took to hollow out this place…or was it a natural occurrence?  Her companion also noted the unique architecture, rolling the cool smooth stone of the banister against the palm of his hand as they walked.

When they reached the ground floor, Bowser gazed around.  He noticed the walls stretching out to his left and found a bend in the cavern, leading to somewhere else, (maybe another room?) and started in that direction.

This tunnel was cleaner cut than the long entryway tunnel, the walls smooth and nearly flawless.  Up above, the naturally formed teeth of the cavern remained, adding to the beauty of the place with their imperfect, but shining, points. 

After walking around another bend they found themselves almost immediately, standing in front of some great double doors.  The silver doors were gold lined, and two gem-encrusted knobs were centered.  They were tall doors, easily surpassing even Bowser’s height, ending about three feet above him.

“Fancy-smancy.”  The koopa king snorted, “Bet this guy was uptight.”

With that comment, the knobs were turned and they entered the room. 

Bowser didn’t seem to notice or care, but it was a beautiful room.  The walls appeared to be made of glass, or to a dreamer, ice perhaps.  Their reflections walked with them as they started for the center of the room, where the floor moved up into a dais.

Something gleamed atop a pedestal, and as they neared, it was easy to see the crystal flower that sat atop a cushion, unsealed, and releasing a glorious shine as light cascaded down upon it from another opening somewhere above them.

They surrounded the pedestal, cautious, and eyed the treasure before them.

The head of the rose was a shiny blue crystal, with no clear facets, as if it had once been a normal rose that had just been dipped into liquid crystal.  It was perfect, without any cracks or blemishes-maintaining pure luster.

“Bwhaha!”  Bowser laughed, and it bounced and echoed around the room, “I’d like to see Mario beat this.  Best holiday ever!”

“Sire.”  Kamek’s cautioned, “Be careful, we don’t know what traps are here.”

Bowser just brushed him aside and reached out for the rose.  His white claws were close enough to touch the rose at a point, when the ground behind to shake under them.

He did not hesitate, and soon the rose was clutched firmly, albeit with a bit of gentleness (he hadn’t came all this way just to break the stupid thing), in his grip.  Bowser wore a satisfied smirk as he turned to look for the trouble.  He glanced around and saw nothing, but turned around at Kammy’s shriek.

Out of the mirrored walls, all around them, something was moving.  Glass seemed to bubble up, like water, and stretched out.  Something was coming out, and in five other places, the same thing was happening.

They gathered themselves around the now empty pedestal, Bowser’s head bowed, wearing a ready grin, smoke threading out from his nostrils.  Around him his servant’s readied their wands.

The first creature hit the ground solid, and shook its great body, shards of glass flying free from its back and tail--like a wet dog shaking.

It made a snorting, huffing noise, shaking its head, and then it lifted up to regard them with iridescent yellow eyes.  The other five did the same once they dropped free.

They were lupine in appearance, with thick pointed manes around their necks and razor sharp fur sticking behind their shoulders and back legs, looking very much like splintered glass. 

One, directly across from them, lifted its head up high, and curled its lips. It revealed teeth clear as ice, and just as sharp and jagged.

It made a sort of whooping noise, half canine and something unknown then started towards them.  The others followed suit.  A careful creep soon became a bolt as they dashed towards the intruders.

 

 

 

 

            

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