01. The Dolphin’s Cry

[BEEP, BEEP, and BEEP again! Wake up already! BEEEEEEEEEP!]

Karasunaki jerked awake. It had fallen asleep in its and Mariella's new control center, waiting for their first mission. That had not turned out to be a good idea, at least not in the chair it had chosen. It's amazing how stiff one can get when one is made out of metal.

"Ow..." Naki's grunt trailed off weakly. It looked around for its glasses as its were-owl partner rushed into the room.

"We get the idea. You can stop beeping now," she told the computer before turning to the humanoid sword-thing. "What's wrong with you?" she asked in the least friendly way she could manage without being outrightly insulting. Mari made no effort to hide her contempt for her colleague's Suvian origins.

"Have you seen my glasses?" it asked, running its hands through its wiry hair to neaten it. This made no noticeable difference, and Naki was still left with a silvery, shaggy mess that hung down in its face.

Mariella sighed in exasperation. "They're right in front of you, genius," she replied, pointing.

Naki blinked, and picked up the eyewear. "So they are," it said mildly, placing them on its face. It was a remarkably hard being to offend, and Mari's attitude didn't bother it all that much. As long as the shapechanger did her job and wasn't too openly a bitch, the one-time sword didn't really care.

"So, what's the job?" Mari asked, rummaging through her things.

Naki leaned closer to the monitor, peering over its glasses. "Ah...Slayers songfic. These things seem to follow me like stray dogs."

"Uh-huh. Sue?"

"No....WHAT? Mazoku do not love. They do not, they do not, they do NOT!" It got up and started slamming a few necessities into its tattered backpack.



"Ugh. What shall we be?"

"Um...random Mazoku?"

"That works." Mari grabbed her pack and looked at Naki expectantly. "Ready?"

"Yeah." Naki poked uncertainly at the disguise generator, while Mari handled the remote activator. The two stepped through, from PPC HQ to the Slayworld.

"Sea of Chaos. Fun. Hope the Lord of Nightmares doesn't notice us," Mari said, reading the Words.

"Well, L-sama's canon, but we are kind of inside her mind. She probably won't hinder us, though, if she can see us. Who, no matter how chaotic, would want badfic contaminating their reality?"

The music of the songfic played in the back of their heads, but she didn't recognize the song. Beside her, Naki grimaced. Its disguise looked more or less like it usually did, only non-metal and clad in a strangely cut, spandex-like outfit with an improbable cape. The outfit didn't surprise Mari, as she'd been a fan of anime long before she'd ever heard of the PPC. Her own outfit was similar to what Xellos wore; she'd have died of embarrassment to wear something that clung like Naki's outfit. Mariella supposed that being completely asexual would spare one from some forms of self-consciousness.

"I wish this was a Suefic. I've got one charge: butchering the lyrics to 'The Dolphins Cry.' For doyc's sake, 'The way you're bathing light?'" It scowled as Xellos contemplated Lina's "perfection in imperfection."

"Aren't all humans both good and evil, both order and chaos?" Mari asked.

Naki shrugged, looking for somewhere to hide. "Xellos can probably see us, he's so OOC."

"Eh, he is canon, though. At least it explains why he had the Hikari no Ken." Mari pulled out her Character Analysis Device, pointing it at the purple-haired Mazoku. The noise that it made didn't sound healthy, not at all.

[Xellos Metallium. Mazoku (ungendered). Canon character. OOC level: 75.48%]

"No Sue at fault this time," the wereowl said, with a sharp look at her partner. She sharpened all her looks on a whetstone she bought at Wal-Mart.

"Hnh. Shouldn't that much of a character rupture be having an effect on the CAD? At any rate, it means exorcism. Do you know the chant?" It pointedly ignored the look.

"Of course," Mari replied, punctuating it with a sniff worthy of any Randland woman. "Although, given the setting, a Megiddo Flare would work as well if either of us knew it."

"That would involve being something of a White Mage," Naki said. It glanced at the Words, and then at Lina and Xel. "Argh! What fool is this who thinks Mazoku love?!"

"The same sort who would write Thranduil beating Legolas, I'd bet. Are they kissing?!" Mari glared at the two. Xel didn't belong with anyone, in her opinion, and shouldn't be kissing them! "Better if she was Zel and there was just good, old fashioned lust. That doesn't kill Mazoku!" The redhead's ire had been redirected from having a Sue for a partner, for the moment. (Well, a former Sue, and it was really more of a "semi-fic blip," but that was beside the point.)

"Heh. Heh.... That reminds me of the last songfic I MSTed," Naki chuckled to itself.

"Oh, you MST?"

"Yeah. You should stop by the Unnamed Theater someday...I think it's about time."

Lina had been returned to Gourry now, and events were eventuating according to canon. The song was fading in their heads. Mari looked up from her fiddling with the portal generator as the scene shifted to some temple ruins. "Do you want to read the sequel or heal him now?"

"Let's heal him now and get out of here. Killing Sues is much more fun." Naki grinned in a way that fell somewhat short of sane, and they each teleported to a wide column behind the one Xellos was due to appear on. "Now?" it asked when the general-priest appeared.

"No, wait 'till she says that bit about something important," Mari answered.


"Why not?"

"It doesn't matter; that part's just about here," Naki acquiesced.

"Something... happened in there," Lina explained dreamily. "Something... important."

"Yes, yes, something important did happen in there. However, mein Herr, that something had nothing to do with you." Xellos turned to see two unfamiliar Mazoku behind him, both glaring. The shorter, redheaded one spoke again. "We need to fix this, of course. It's why we allegedly get paid."

The other one, slightly taller and more masculine in appearance, though not totally so, began to chant. A strange white glow surrounded it. “In the name of Kanzaka Hajime and Araizumi Rui, Creators of the Slayworld, I command you, demons and spirits of all things OOC, absent yourselves from the form of this hapless canon character, and begone to the foul, warped mind from whence you came. Trouble this world and the overworked agents of the PPC no more!" It started repeating, "Begone in the name of the Creators," and the redhead joined it, with a similar glow around her.

Something leeched out of Xellos, and the two agents smiled in satisfaction when a silvery spirit appeared, crying, "But Xellos and Lina should be in love!!"

They both shouted "Begone, foul spirit!" and it was so.

That warm, familiar feeling of canon returning to what made it canon filled the air, and the Mazoku wondered what he was doing staring at nothing. Below him, hidden from view, Mari was recovering from where she had jumped.

"You didn't have to push me," Naki grumbled, brushing itself off. It checked the equipment in its backpack as Mari opened a portal back to the response center.

"Sure I did," Mari said, grinning. "Is it my fault you didn't think to get out of his sight?"

"Yes. And I would've moved, if you'd given me time," it griped, stepping through the portal. "Ah, home sweet home."

"Sweet, it says," Mariella said, following her partner. "Just how insane are you?" She dropped her pack unceremoniously on the floor before dropping herself on a pile of cushions and carpets in the corner.

"Depends on who you ask." It returned to the chair it had been sitting in. "I hope we get a Sue next. Of course, there's no telling since somebody offered to work wherever she was needed, in order to free up people for Middle-earth."

"Eh. I'm going to get some food." The girl had almost made it to the door, almost made it free, when the Narrative Laws of Comedy kicked in.


[Original] Site by Karasunaki. Naki and Mariella copyright 2003 themselves. "The PPC" copyright Jay and Acacia, even though the Great Ones have retired. All fics and characters copyright their respective owners, and used without permission unless otherwise noted.