The 'Shroom:Issue 183/Palette Swap
Hi, everyone! Welcome to the June Super Mario Sunshine special issue of The 'Shroom!
First of all, I'd like to give congratulations to our sub-director Waluigi Time (talk) on his placement as Director for the Fake News team! Looking forward to seeing how you'll run this team and what new things you'll introduce!
This month has been a massively busy one for me so far. Work has been crazy as we're relocating to a new building and encountering problems, and this week the temperatures decided to soar into the 90s with very little warning. It's like getting hit in the face with a brick every time you walk outside. I've been plugging away at Rune Factory 5 still, and I've beaten the main story in two of my save files and working on the real endgame goals- romancing my favorite characters into marriage. I love the relationship mechanics in this game, it's so refreshing to have all the different personalities of the characters when in Stardew Valley only half of the roster was really worth pursuing (the boys were so boring.) This time next month I hope to have the main story beaten in my third save file so I can move on to Fire Emblem: Three Hopes before Xenoblade comes out. Wish me luck!
Speaking of Fire Emblem, I'm sure many of you are aware of the tragic passing of voice actor Billy Kametz earlier this month. Kametz was a prolific actor who worked on many anime, games, and movies, such as JoJo's Bizarre Adventure and Pokemon. He worked on Fire Emblem: Three Houses as Ferdinand (Von Aegir) and was also in Promare as Galo, a role that I'm sure absolutely wrecked his vocal cords based on how hoarse he was in the VA commentary feature. He was fighting colon cancer, which is an aggressive cancer, and I'm left so saddened and heartbroken by his passing. I wish there was something I could have done to ease his pain, but I will be leaving a link to the Colon Cancer Coalition if you would like to donate some money in his name. Rest in peace, Billy, you brought so much joy with every role you took on.
This month, we have another Community Comic from Flygon64 (talk) for you to read as well as the next part of Long John Spaghetti (talk)'s new fiction column Luigi and Associates Detective Agency, so I'll stop blathering on and let you get to the good stuff.
Section of the Month
Another round of Section of the Month is in the books! This month in the top spot is Waluigi Time (talk), with Waluigi Time Comic! Next up, we have a three-way tie for second, between Hooded Pitohui (talk)'s guest Mario's Boombox section, Magolor04726 (talk)'s World of Plight, and winstein (talk)'s Drawn and Pressed. A big thank you to everyone who voted, and please keep it up for this month as well!
|PALETTE SWAP SECTION OF THE MONTH|
|1st||Waluigi Time Comic||10||43.48%||Waluigi Time (talk)|
|2nd||Mario's Boombox||3||13.04%||Hooded Pitohui (talk)|
|2nd||World of Plight||3||13.04%||Magolor04726 (talk)|
|2nd||Drawn and Pressed||3||13.04%||winstein (talk)|
Drawn and Pressed
Comic Strip Adaptations
When the business of comic strips proved to be successful, it would not be unreasonable to expect that characters and settings that were not originally comic strips would be adapted into them. We have quite a few comic strips throughout the years, such as Mickey Mouse starting from 1930 to 1995, or Pokémon which started from 2000 but did not have a long life. Given how newspapers faced a general decline not too long after the turn of the millennium when social media and the internet became more lucrative as a source for news, so too are adaptations of other properties into newspaper comic strips.
Because of the in-built popularity of the original version, it made sense to create an adaptation of the property. So for example, since Mickey Mouse is already very popular, it made sense to have a comic strip based on Mickey Mouse. In the past, newspapers were doing relatively well to make the venture worthwhile, and some of them ended up lasting for a long time! We can surmise that this is why throughout those years, adaptations of other properties pop up as newspapers every now and then. The unfortunate reality is that newspapers were facing a decline when the internet is rising, and it's not helped by the shrinking space afforded for comic strips in a newspaper, which meant the competition for a spot on a paper increases. It might sound like popular IPs have a higher chance in making it, but the risk is still quite high. That is another thing that should be mentioned: while it is certainly an achievement to be syndicated, the income is based on the number of papers that the strip gets into, which is to say that if too few newspapers expressed interest in a cartoon, it will surely be at risk in being cancelled. Not to mention, starting a comic strip also meant a long-term investment because of the arduous task of creating a cartoon every day for as long as it's printed on newspapers. There is also the issue of reprinting: it's not very common for comic strips to have collection reprints, much less a complete one, so unless it's something like Mickey Mouse which is historical, or perhaps Rugrats where you can view the archives on a website, it's likely for the less-popular comic strips to be lost in time.
It would indeed be a surprise if there is a new comic strip adaptation starting from the last decade that is printed on a newspaper, since it's almost certain that if a license holder want to expand the reach of their IP, it would be through other means like through video games, films, and comic books. Yes, you heard me: issued comic books are considered a more lucrative way to adapt a property, given how some publishers are open to doing them like IDW Publishing doing comics on My Little Pony, Ghostbusters, and Star Trek, as well as Boom! Studios doing comics on newer cartoons like Steven Universe, Adventure Time, and Bee and Puppycat. It's easy to see why comic books are preferred: there is more time to get it right for an adapted story of better quality in terms of writing and art. It's not like comic strips are immune to this, because both Garfield and Peanuts have original content for comic books and not merely reprints for the original comic strips (fun fact: one of the writers for the Garfield comic books by Boom! Studios was is Mark Evanier, who is one of the Garfield & Friends writers). Even then, only the popular ones get this treatment, so don't expect to see something like Arlo & Janis or Retail get this treatment, especially if a sole or dual creator prefer to keep the creative responsibility to themselves. This is doubly so when most comic strips did not reach that level of popularity to make issued comic books a viable way to expand.
The realm of comic strips can be an invitation to different and strange takes from the original property. While comic strips usually have to adhere to brand guidelines to be accepted, that does not mean that they aren't free to pursue their own ideas. For example, Mickey Mouse was originally a gag-a-day comic strip, but when comic strips started doing daily continuity strips like The Gumps and Wash Tubbs (not to mention how Popeye already got there earlier), a suggestion was made to Disney to put Mickey Mouse in that direction, and thus the comic strip's trajectory changed when Mickey Mouse got into his first adventure in "Mickey Mouse in Death Valley". Given how Mickey Mouse adventure comic books are still being made, it's hard not to see how this change played a pivotal role in showing its viability. Another different example would be The Amazing Spider-Man: while The Amazing Spider-Man may have the look of the original Spider-Man comic series, the comic strip developed its own identity that gave it its own continuity, even introducing villains exclusive to it like Clown-9 and Hammerhand (not to be confused with Hammerhead). The alternate version of Spider-Man is at times pretty entertaining in its own right for how different it is. And then there's the Disney version of Winnie the Pooh, whose comic strip counterpart is noted for how callous and sarcastic the titular character is portrayed, a far cry for his friendly and thoughtfulness. Because this is the Disney version we're talking about, the contrast in personality makes this even more of a whiplash.
There are indeed some odd ways to fit a comic strip adaptation as well. A very notable example is Betty Boop and Felix, which crosses over both Betty Boop and Felix the Cat in order to recast them as a working woman and her pet cat, with Felix being relegated to relay his thought and being unable to talk normally. This setup is very clearly inspired by the success of Garfield, and was drawn by the sons of Mort Walker (creator of Beetle Bailey and Hi and Lois). Both of them are portrayed so differently from their original versions in this cartoon that it felt like a misguided way to reintroduce them, especially if they weren't popular at that time. I should add that both Betty and Felix had comic strips of their own before, so it's not like they were new to the scene. I have previously covered Robotman's history in a previous article, but it bears repeating that Robotman was originally a robot that lives with a family and had the desire to go home to outer space, but later it changed because the cartoonist Jim Meddick is better suited for a different comedic approach, which meant that parodies and subversive humour became more common, and it cumulated to Robotman's personality change when he moved into Monty's house. In essence, the Robotman comic strip became different from the original, and in turn more enjoyable as a result, but as a licensed property, it cannot continue and thus Robotman had to be written out to leave Monty to continue the comic strip.
Personally speaking, I don't feel like I have a favourite comic strip adaptation. In fact, my opinion for any adaptation that I can think of is merely just fascination for the what they offered as a different take. For example, Winnie the Pooh is subversive in how the characters are portrayed sometimes, but because of this it becomes amazing for how uncharacteristic it is and how the cartoonists got away with this portrayal. This portrayal of Winnie the Pooh could be traced back to the involvement of an outsider of Disney, who worked on things like Rocky and Bullwinkle and Dudley Doright, which are zanier cartoons. Rugrats is another comic strip that I thought was very nice for portraying the characters faithfully from the animated series, so I think it's something fans of the series would also like. From what little I have seen in Pokémon, it seems all right and harmless, though its inconsistencies with the overall brand might be irksome for some fans, such as Ash going to school. And then there's Betty Boop and Felix which is a very odd for being trendchasing through usage of meshing two series, and I can't help that it's in part to give the Walker Brothers something to work with because I feel like the adaptation is just an in-name-only one.
Adapting a foreign IP into a comic strip would usually be a way to expand it, or as a fun alternate take on the original. Either way, a comic strip adaptation is usually enriching due to the advantages a comic strip can bring, such as the condensation of the material and being easy to digest. I would not rule out that it could bring something new into the world of the comic strips, even if I am not aware of any examples of that kind.
Thank you for reading.
World of Plight
M vs. M
Sakurai nodded his agreement and walked out as I breathed a sigh of relief. He had agreed to my plan and if it worked, the Fighters would be able to make it to Azcron. The Fighters continued to climb carefully upwards. Mewtwo seemed to be anxious about something. It was glancing around quite frequently, as though it were looking for something. A few of the others were a bit agitated as well. Even I could feel the weight and pressure weighing on the group. Eventually, they came to a long hall supported by pillars. Rows of windows allowed one to see to the horizon on both sides and three massive statues stood sentry in the hall. The first was a familiar tuxedo-clad robot frowning down on the Fighters. A silver rectangle on the base read
Mega Man lingered at the statue for a moment before following the others to the next statue.
A golden woman with long flowing hair smiled down at the group and seemed to radiate a motherly warmth, which made a few people relax a little bit. She had a dress with pioneer-times influence and her plaque read
The word “Death” seemed to bring the tension back to the group as the final statue loomed overhead. A man with a determined look on his face and a spear in his hand stood tall and powerful. His armor shone in the light and the scars on his face added to the feeling that the statue was in control. His plate read
The Warrior King
My eyes widened at the last word and I almost didn’t notice the figure sitting on the base of the final statue.
Metal Jaw looked at the group for a moment before speaking. “Impressive, that you made it this far. However, I doubt that you’ll ever be able to surpass me-.”
“Spare us the evil monologue,” Captain Falcon interjected.
Metal faltered. “But… I had a speech prepared. Do you have any idea how long it took me to write it?”
Pit arched an eyebrow. “Do you guys really rehearse your lines?”
Metal Jaw stood up. “Don’t you?”
A round of “No” went up from almost everyone.
“Ah. Well.” Metal Jaw cracked what would have been his knuckles. “Let’s end this.”
“COME ON!” Captain Falcon yelled. He and Mario joined hands and the captain threw him through the air at Metal Jaw as Sora threw the Keyblade at him. Metal Jaw jumped to the side and snagged the key blade before swinging it into Mario, knocking him back into an advancing Captain Falcon. Marth and Little Mac surged forward as Samus charged up a sphere of energy. Marth and Little Mac sparred with Metal Jaw as Sora attempted to reclaim his weapon and Samus blasted the orb at the group. Their opponent leaped over it, causing it to fly into Sora’s chest, sending him across the room as Metal Jaw spun on Marth and Mac and knocked them to the floor. Pit began firing arrows at Metal Jaw as Mega Man fired a massive blue shot towards him. Metal Jaw held out a hand and needles grew from his fingertips, conducting the electricity into his body. He yelled as the energy from the arrows joined the mix.
“Go, go, GO!” Snake yelled. He popped a grenade out and lobbed it towards Metal Jaw as Pikachu surged towards him. Metal Jaw held out his other hand and more needles came out of his fingers and he began drawing on the power emanating from Pikachu.
“WAIT-,” Mewtwo’s voice sounded in the heads of the Fighters, but it was too late. Metal Jaw gave a final yell and the energy from the room dissipated. His body glowed and the exposed part of his head whirred rapidly. His receptors gleamed as he said, “Now I know how Azcron feels.”
He clapped his hands together and a massive wave of energy blasted outwards. It shot through the group and caused everything to turn white for a brief moment. When the drone righted itself after the surge, the Fighters struggled to stand as Metal Jaw cackled, his circuitry losing its violent glow.
Just then, Sakurai walked back into my room. “They’re on their way.”
“Guys!” I yelled into the microphone,” reinforcements are coming!”
“Please,” Metal Jaw scoffed, “Who would you possibly send-.”
Then, in the twinkling of an eye, a flash appeared in the air between Metal Jaw and the Fighters and Mii Brawler dropped to the floor and struck a pose, his fists raised. Taking advantage of Metal Jaw’s visible confusion, Brawl rushed in and attacked, punching and kicking with the force of a lion, landing blow after blow.
Metal Jaw simply stood there. When Brawler stopped, clutching his knees and panting, Metal Jaw grabbed him by the shirt and hoisted him into the air. “THIS is your backup? Pathetic!” He lifted him higher and hurled him across the room. When Brawler hit the wall, he exploded in a spectacular fashion, not unlike what normally happens to a KO’d Fighter. Metal Jaw smirked. “Nothing short of an army would be able to stop me!”
Suddenly, two more flashes appeared and Swordfighter and Gunner dropped down. They rushed in, hitting Metal Jaw with everything they had. This time, he reacted quickly. Grabbing Swordfighter’s weapon as it swung towards him, he caught the orb of energy Gunner had sent his way and slammed it into Swordfighter’s face, sending him soaring across the room, weaponless. Metal Jaw’s hand retracted in on itself and he loaded the sword into the now vacant slot, which he promptly aimed at Gunner and fired. The sword pierced through her torso and she fell over before she and Swordfighter exploded as well.
Metal Jaw laughed loudly. “Anyone else?” he taunted, spreading his arms out.
“Yeah,” I said with a smile.
“A few, actually,” Sakurai added.
In a marvelous flash, a massive mob of Miis met the ground. Each one was wearing a different costume. Everyone from Skull Kid to Spring Man, Dragon Armor to Ancient Armor, and Sans to Doom Guy. Three dropped down with black shirt’s that said M. Two were carrying healing items which they dropped by the downed Fighters. And finally, Brawler, Swordfighter, and Gunner appeared once more at the head of the group and struck an attack pose. Metal Jaw’s receptors widened.
“What was it you said?” I asked. “Nothing short of an army? I’d like to introduce you to Sakurai’s personal army.”
“CHAAAAAARGE!” Brawler yelled as the group surged forward. The Fighters stood up and watched in amazement as the Miis pummeled Metal Jaw with all manner of weapons and attacks. Metal Jaw swept his arm out and shot flames from his fingertips and kicked and spun with ferocity, but the army of Miis was endless.
“Get BACK, you vile creatures! GRAAAH!!”
I pointed the drone at Mario. “Hey big guy, now might be a good time to make a break for those doors.”
Mario nodded and motioned for the Fighters to follow him as the Miis continued to hold off Metal Jaw. Marth pushed open the doors behind the final statue and the group stepped into what seemed like an elevator. The room jostled and seemed to move upwards. Just as suddenly, the room stopped and the doors opened once more. The Fighters stepped into a large, circular room. It was made of metal that gleamed black and deep red. Windows wrapped all the way around the building, allowing an unrestricted view of every direction. Directly in front of the Fighters sat a throne. The throne was also metal and glowed the same color as the floor. On the throne sat a hooded figure. A strange, purple mist surrounded him and the armor he wore was damaged all over. Battered shoulder pads rested on either side of his head as the mist swirled around him. A spear was beside the throne and his hands were gently tapping the throne’s armrests.
"Hmph. I have been waiting. I had no doubt you would all make it here. For I sense great power within each of you. And it is power I want. And I will have it… or you will die. For I. Am. Azcron."
Shmaluigi, Private Investigator
Sticky Situation: Part 1
Things started out normal that day. I got up, did my morning routine, and by the time I was having breakfast, I got a call from Chief Palmer asking me to come into his office. This could either be something good, or something bad. Or maybe a little of both. You never really know what to expect when your boss wants you to come to his office. Although, it's usually not as bad as being called into the principal's office. I'd be lying if I said that I didn't have... a fair bit of experience with that one. But in my defense, Shmwario was in there way more than I was!
...That's not a good defense, is it?
Brief tangent about my occasionally less than stellar behavior as a youth aside, I finished up breakfast and hurried over to headquarters to see what was up.
I arrived at the NWPD headquarters and popped into the chief's office.
"What's up, chief?" I asked.
"Ah, Shmaluigi, have a seat." I sat down, waiting for him to just explain what was going on already. "We got a new case that seems to be right up your alley. Word is there's been an uptick in black market activity in the city these past few weeks. We suspect it's a new mafia either getting started or just trying to get a foothold in New Wikisburg."
"Oh great, like we need another one of those."
"We're hoping we can get in and stamp them out before they get too established. An anonymous informant gave us a tip that there's going to be another shipment coming in tonight at the harbor. You up for checking things out so we can get some intel on them?"
"Of course, chief," I said with a confident smile. "Consider this mafia busted."
I went over to the harbor later that evening as the sun began to set. I wanted to make sure to get here early enough that I wouldn't miss anything and none of the baddies would see me, but also not too early to the point of spending the entire day sitting behind some shipping crates doing nothing. This seemed like a good timeframe, and no one seemed to be here yet.
I waited patiently as the sky grew darker. Eventually, I saw a group of Koopas arriving. A couple Sumo Bros. and Sledge Bros., even a Boom Boom, all guys who looked like they were equipped for heavy lifting. Not long after they had arrived, a ship docked in the harbor, and the group of Koopas began working to unload some plain crates. I tried to get a better view of what was going on when...
I accidentally knocked over a very inconveniently placed garbage can, spilling its contents on the ground and making a lot more racket than I would have liked to. Ideally, zero racket. The Koopas immediately turned their gaze directly towards me. Shoot. I figured since my cover was blown, it would probably be a good idea to scratch the mission, and I ran out of there as fast as I could.
"Get back here!"
Of course I couldn't make a clean getaway! I looked behind me to see the Boom Boom and one of the Sumo Bros. hot on my trail. I ducked down an alley, hoping to shake them off.
I ran forward but soon became face to face with wall. My stomach dropped as I quickly realized that this was a dead end. I briefly thought about how unfortunate that terminology was in this particular instance, but didn't have too much time to dwell on it. Here's a hot tip, if you're ever being chased, don't run around in unfamiliar places that may or may not have only one way in and out.
I turned around and hoped that maybe I still had enough time to escape, but no such luck. These two goons were already closing in. I'd either have to be the most convincing diplomat alive or an escape artist to get out of here.
"Er, hey, why don't we talk about this first?" I said, making a feeble attempt to cool the situation off.
"Nah, how's about we break all ya's bones instead?" said the Boom Boom.
Well, I can't say I didn't try.
I braced for whatever was about to happen next, when suddenly a spray of a thick red liquid shot down from above, splattering the two of them.
"'Ey, what's the big idea?!" yelled the Boom Boom.
I looked up to see what the source was, in time to see a small, dark figure leap from the rooftop and land in the alleyway between me and the thugs. The next thing I knew, they unleashed a flurry of attacks on the Sumo Bro. before jumping into the air and coming crashing down for a finishing blow, sending the poor guy flying several feet away, unconscious. The whole thing had to have been over in mere seconds, or at least it felt like it. By this point, the Boom Boom, having an IQ greater than zero, decided it would be a good idea to flee.
"Ahaha, are you thinking you can get away that easy from me? Sorry my dude, but your time has come, and I will have my fun!"
The mysterious figure zipped down the alleyway, and in no time at all, the Boom Boom had met the same fate as his companion. I almost felt bad for the two of them. Almost.
After the shadowy character finished dealing with those two, they came back, grabbed me by the wrist, and booked it out of there.
"HEY! What's going on?!" I asked, startled by the whole thing.
No response. Nothing I could do but go along for the ride, it seemed.
We continued running for quite some time, until we finally stopped several blocks away. I wasn't counting, but it was probably a lot less than it felt like. Finally, a moment to catch my breath.
"Seriously... Who are you?" I asked.
"Come on Detective, you sure do have a clue, aren't you? Though, it's been a while since Rogueport, so I won't hold a grudge if you don't remember who I am," the figure said, turning to me. I recognized him instantly. It was relieving to see a friendly face.
"Ah, Sticky Warrior! It's been quite a while since we last met. How are things going for yourself?"
"Couldn't be better. Keeping myself busy such as dealing with filthy thugs like I just did a few seconds ago. However, I am on a bigger case right now. The kidnapping of a Snifit dude. They are being held for ransom by someone going by the name of... Oh for Inkbrush's sake, what was the name again... Ugh... Oh! Right! Terrakingpin. Weird name right?
Anyway, I was looking for some fresh clues of their whereabout when I saw you being cornered by these monsters. Lucky day for you it seems, though I suggest you be more careful next time. This part of town is not exactly the best to hang out in, if I'm being honest with you, Detective."
"Yeeeah, Shmaluigi noticed that. Well, it sounds like you've got your work cut out for you. Shmaluigi would love to help, but he's busy with a case of his own. Black marketeers moving into the city, fun stuff..."
"Nah, don't worry about it. I wouldn't want you to put your own plans aside for me, and besides, if you weren't watching those black marketeers, who knows what these nasty scum would be plotting!"
I looked down at my sleeve and noticed some red stains on my trenchcoat. "Erm, is this ink, or, ah, blood?"
"Ah! My clothes are always stained like this after a day of hard work, but you know, it grew on me! It's a great color with a... very delicate smell hahaha!"
I didn't really like the sound of that, but maybe it was better if I didn't know for sure. Probably better not to press the issue...
"Oh, one more thing-"
I looked back up only to see a splash of ink where the Sticky Warrior had stood. As it fell to the ground, he was nowhere to be seen.
I sure get involved with some eccentric people sometimes...
The next day I reported back to the chief's office - after a quick stop at the dry cleaners to drop off my trenchcoat - and told him everything that had happened at the harbor.
"Well, that's unfortunate," the chief said, "this is probably going to be a lot more difficult now that they know we're onto them. Is there anything you can think of that would help us track down any of the criminals you saw? Like, distinguishing features or something?"
I thought about it for a minute, trying to recall any details that could be useful. "Hmm... Well, Shmaluigi didn't get a good look at most of them, just the Sumo Bro. and the Boom Boom. The Sumo Bro. looked pretty average, the Boom Boom... Yeah, he had some sort of tattoo over his left eye. Wasn't able to see it up close, though."
"Well, it's something to work with, I suppose. I'll send out a dispatch and maybe we can turn up some leads. I'll see what we can dig up on this 'Terrakingpin' character for your friend, too."
"With all due respect chief, Shmaluigi thinks he probably has it better handled than we would..."
"Well, maybe, I don't feel too good about leaving this sort of thing up to a vigilante, though..."
So that was that. Nothing to do but play the waiting game now. One thing's for sure, being a private investigator isn't a job for the impatient.
To be continued...
It's been a while since Shmaluigi busted a mafia in this section, so it's time to get back to his roots! Well, actually he's never busted a proper mafia in this section at all. I guess it really has been a while then. Special thanks to our wonderful director Ninja Squid for coming on board to write dialogue for the Sticky Warrior and helping with other elements of his characterization!
Also, if you haven't already been reading it, I'd like to give a quick shoutout to LJS and his Palette Swap section, Luigi and Associates Detective Agency. If you like Shmaluigi, Private Investigator (although I'm not sure why you'd be reading this message right now if you don't), I'd definitely recommend checking it out!
Luigi and Associates Detective Agency
Issue #1: The Wedding
Today was the happiest day of his life. Well, it’s supposed to be, anyway. Luigi was, instead of imagining his happy future with his soon-to-be wife, sweating beads while shaking uncontrollably, trying to console himself in the mirror.
“S-S-Steady, Luigi,” he said to himself, “T-T-There’s nothing to be afraid of! It’s your wedding day, the happiest day of your life! The first day of your life together with Yuri- and if you screw it up, she’ll remember it until the day she dies- AHH! I can’t take this kinda pressure!!”
Luigi spun around and grabbed the nearest member of his groomsmen-which just so happened to be Shmaluigi, who was dressed in an all-white ensemble, complete with a white fedora-by the collar.
“Wh-What am I supposed to do?!” Luigi screamed, shaking Shmaluigi, “WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO?!”
“Hey, you wanna wrinkle Shmaluigi’s suit?” Shmaluigi grumbled, prying Luigi’s hands off of his collar. “You’re supposed to get married, haven’t you been paying any attention?”
“I-I’m sorry, man, I’m just…I’m freaking out over here! Freaking out! Today needs to be PERFECT, okay?! Y-You understand, right?!”
“Yeah, yeah, you spend months planning these things and everything falls apart at the last minute…” Shmaluigi said, seeming to trail off for a second before snapping out of it. “Er, anyway, Shmaluigi’s sure everything will be fine.”
Luigi took a deep breath before continuing, “Yeah…okay…okay, yeah, okay…you’re probably right…I might just be overreacting, is all…Hey, by the way, where’d Shmwario go? Wasn’t he just with you? He better not have gotten into the cake…”
Just then, the head chef burst into the room, dragging Shmwario by the back of his collar. “Luigi, can you keep your groomsman OUT of the kitchen?”
“...I just had to open my mouth, didn’t I?” Luigi sighed, “...What damage did he do?”
“Nothing this time…”
“Hey, I was just tryin’ to supervise!” Shmwario snapped.
“Yeah, Shmaluigi’s not buying it.”
“Oh come on- I told you that you’d get your cake when it’s time for cake!” Luigi huffed, “Just be patient, okay?!”
“Fine, whatever,” Shmwario said, adjusting his suit.
“GAH! What else could go wrong today?!” Luigi yelped.
Suddenly, Luigi felt a familiar hand on his shoulder, which instantly had a calming effect over him.
“Heya, bro,” said a very familiar voice, “Take it easy, okay? There’s nothin’ to worry about.”
Instantly, Luigi eased up, letting his shoulders drop, “Heh. Thanks, Mario.”
Luigi turned slightly to face Mario, who also wore a white tuxedo along with a warm smile.
“Today’s the awesomest day of your life, Luigi,” Mario continued, “If you keep worrying about it, everything will go wrong. It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy sort of thing, you know? Just relax, walk up to that altar, and kiss the girl.”
“O-Okay, Mario. I got this…I got this…”
“...I don’t got this…I don’t got this…” Yuri murmured under her breath, gazing at herself in the mirror with a thousand-yard stare. She was currently letting Pearl handle the last-minute makeup and hair arrangements.
“Y’all don’t need to worry about this- hold still, I’m gonna splat your eyes otherwise- I mean, Luigi’s prob’ly more nervous than you, you ain’t got nothin’ to worry about.”
Yuri let out a half-hearted chuckle, “Yes, Luigi’s probably going out of his mind right now…it’s just…this…this is supposed to be the happiest day of our lives…something can always go wrong…”
“Yeah, an’ that’s gonna be your make-up if you don’t keep still- thanks- ‘sides, it ain’t gonna be the end of the world if things go a bit wrong. A bit of chaos can be real fun sometimes!”
“While that may be true…” Yuri took a deep breath before continuing, “...I honestly believe I’m more upset at the thought of all the media attention this is getting. I mean, Luigi is the brother of Mario, the hero of the entire Mushroom Kingdom. The media is just going stark raving mad at any minor detail…”
Pearl put down the brush and pulled a disgruntled face. “Well, yeah, the media can be like that sometimes. I mean, y’all always get a few rotten fish in the sea, but literally no one cares what they think. And then everyone else is just so head-over-eels that they’ll think anything’s great- even if y’all fall face first, or sing a wrong note- they just think it makes you relatable or somethin’.”
Yuri shifted her eyes from Pearl back to her reflection in the mirror, then back at Pearl, “You know…you’re correct. In time, does it really matter how ‘perfect’ this day was? In hindsight, we’ll always look back on it as ‘perfect’, not because it actually was, but because it was…our wedding. Our day. And nothing can ever change that. Thank you, Pearl.”
“Hey, no problem. Now, are y’all sorted with the make-up, or do ya need a touch-up on anything else?”
Yuri turned back to her reflection with a confident smile, “It’s perfect as it is.”
“Aight then, I’ll leave y’all to it. Gotta help out a few more people. Y’all are gonna have an amazin’ day.”
“Thank you again, Pearl,” Yuri nodded.
Pearl picked up her make-up box and turned to the door to leave. “Y’all are welcome, you certainly look fresh. Guess I’ll see ya out there!”
Yuri smiled as she looked into the mirror. Today wasn’t seeming to be such a disaster after all.
Around 30 minutes later, Luigi stood at the altar with Mario, his best man, by his side. Shmaluigi, Shmwario, and the rest of the groomsmen stood to the right of Luigi, who was facing outward, waiting for the appearance of his wife-to-be. Luigi looked expectantly at Mario, who gave his anxious brother a smile and a nod.
Suddenly, as if to immediately ease Luigi’s growing anxiety, the big doors opened as the Wedding March began to play. With Pearl by her side, Yuri walked up slowly to the altar.
For Luigi, everything seemed to go in slow motion. His heart was skipping every other beat as he looked at his practically glowing wife-to-be in awe.
For Yuri, time seemed to not be going fast enough. All she wanted to do was rush up to the altar and seal the bonds of marriage so that she and Luigi would be together, forever.
After what seemed like an entirety, Yuri took her place at the altar, with Pearl adjacent to her as the Maid of Honor, with the rest of the bridesmaids to the left.
Standing face-to-face, the two lovers were completely mesmerized by the other. Luigi looked over Yuri’s sparkling white wedding dress and long veil, tied together by the marvelous make-up job done by Pearl, while Yuri was enamored with Luigi’s sharp white tuxedo, complete with a green tie and pocket square, also taking the time to ogle Luigi’s mustache and sideburns, which had been groomed to perfection.
The pastor started speaking, but neither Luigi nor Yuri were listening. They instead took the other’s hand in their own and stared passionately into each other’s eyes. Luigi had imagined his day ever since he was little. Yuri had been imaging it since she was ‘born’. And now the sacred moment was finally here. Luigi and Yuri both wanted this single moment to last forever, but they both knew, if it did, they would miss out on their life together.
Suddenly, it seemed as though the pastor’s voice came back into focus, “Do you, Luigi Idrualico, take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife?”
“And do you, Yuri, take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband, for richer and for poorer, in sickness and in health, for as long as you both shall live?”
“By the power invested in me, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride!”
Luigi and Yuri practically leapt towards each other, their lips interlocking as the crowd cheered and clapped. Mario wiped a tear from his eye while Pearl pumped her fists in excitement.
This was the start of something special. Everybody could feel it.
Thank you, dear Shroom reader, for reading the first issue of Luigi and Associates: Detective Agency! This is a story I’ve wanted to do for a while now, and I’m really happy to actually do it!
Special thanks to Waluigi Time for Shmaluigi and Shmwario dialogue, and to BBQ Turtle for Pearl dialogue!
Tune in next month where we really get the ball rolling with part one of the first story arc!
|The 'Shroom: Issue 183|
|Staff sections||Staff Notes • The 'Shroom Spotlight • 'Shroomfest • Poll Chairperson Election|
|Features||Fake News • Fun Stuff • Palette Swap • Pipe Plaza • Critic Corner • Strategy Wing|
|Specials||Community Awards Dossier • Blooper Race • Living Game: Where Are They Now?|