Need a Little Pixel Dust?
Rome had really put a beating onto the contestants…most of them anyway. Adaliah seemed to be the only one that felt as refreshed as she looked; possibly from the fact that she was the winner and didn't have to do a thing in the morning.
"In all my life, never have I ever felt more relaxed," Adaliah sighed happily as she sat back in the confessional with her arms behind her head. "I mean, sure, I've had to defend myself from the usual pricks back home that tried to get in my pants, but this is probably the first time I've ever fought done fun. And my bitch of mother said I would never amount to anything." She smirked before turning to face the camera fully. "You hear that, you scum-licking asshole!? You are nothing but a- *censored* with a *censored once more* that *where the heck did she learn these words!?* with tartar sauce! Even if I don't win this competition, I am never gonna crawl back to you!" she roared at the top of her lungs; the plane outside of the confessional was awkwardly quiet.
"So . . . yeah. I'm feeling much better than before," she sighed before resting her chin on her hand. "Now if that Rosaline girl could find me somebody." She mumbled. "She's one crazy nutball."
She leans into her chair content; a barely visible smile graced her lips.
"Congratulations on the challenge, Adaliah. You made quite the impression on Chef," states Robin in front of her. Adaliah raised an eyebrow, amusement playing in her eyes. Robin held a silent victory in his head at her expression. He excused himself and headed into the bathroom. Adaliah closed her eyes.
"Ding-Dong, the witch is dead!" exclaims Robin gleefully. I have to say, I have never been so happy to see someone go. That is one goal checked off, only two more to go. First, I think I should make amends with Alice. Secondly, win this competition. Check. Check
He walks out of the bathroom to walk right into Alice. She looks at him startled, as she was writing in some type of notebook. She gives Robin a quick smile and scurries off; he looks off at her with deep confusion and walks off, not ready to ponder on it just yet.
Laura goes into the bathroom after him, clearly ready to speak her mind in the confessional.
"I know what I said to Paul- but damn it- my boy- shoulda won- I mean look at this" she gestures to her body "Who wouldn't be riled up to fight to impress me?- huh"
She sighs "I can't be angry at him, I'm sure he did his best…he better have- why didn't win? He has the athletic body- strong legs, nice- nice hard abs, and pecs and those nice, oh so very nice, strong arms..."
Laura starts drooling.
Her eyes are unfocused as she sits there, clearly in La La Land.
She suddenly blinks as if just remembering where she was, quickly wipes away the drool and blushes realizing that was all on TV.
She coughs- just because she is unsure as to what else to do..."I'll just-go, now- to Paul" and so she gets up to leave "and his arms..." she sighs as she practically floats out.
Paul had walked up to her confessional to hear about how she felt about him losing, and that didn't settle his already damaged ego. However, the comments on his body did make his confidence go back up, as well as the blood to his cheeks. Laura glides out to see her boyfriend blushing madly. Raising an eyebrow, she walks past him and winks.
Paul smiles at her retreating figure and heads into the confessional. His thoughts had trailed back to the things he had figured out.
"Angel better be glad she's off this plane because I she was I would make her wish she never auditioned I just found out that she made Alice, Ronny, Tori, Zacharias, and even my best friends Cole and Samantha get eliminated," he says his voice somewhat cracking.
"And if you mess with the people I care about you mess with me and you wouldn't like me when I'm angry." He says after a short pause he continues in a much less intense mood
"That last challenge was so...well challenging" he laughs, "I can't believe we met Chef Hatchet from Total Drama Island and the rest of the seasons!" He says amazed "Were those training exercises even legal?!"
He exits out the bathroom to find Laura tapping away on her laptop. He leans from the back of the chair behind her, leans over it, and starts to massage her shoulders.
Laura starts to daze off back into her thoughts from her confessional…warm, gentle hands working out the tension in her shoulders. She was close to falling into deep relaxation when she finally heard Paul talking to her.
"—The keys on your laptop," he said.
"Repeat that?" she says, clearing her throat.
"You kept your fingers pressed hard on the keys on your laptop," he responded. Laura gasped to see that she had kept her fingers on the keys too long; her laptop was now freezing. Her moment of relaxation died and the revival of irritation surfaced. Paul knew better to be near an angry female at this level, best to let it out on her own and cradle her in the aftermath.
"I'll be back. I'm going to change into my PJs," he says, kissing her forehead and walking off. Laura forced a smile as he walked off. Once he was out of sight, she dropped her smile and glare at her laptop.
Laura growled in frustration at her laptop freezing; she couldn't even send a proper subscription to this fashion magazine! Curse Paul and his massaging fingers! Tapping furiously on the keys of her keyboard, Laura yells at her computer.
"You are going to work! You are not going to freeze again! Listen to me!" she screams.
Some of the passengers, Adaliah and Robin, looked back at Laura with irritation who screamed once more. Freddy, who was playing DragonBall Z on his PSP, sighed and got up. He proceeded to Laura and placed a single finger to his lips.
"Shhhh," he soothes. Laura looks up and glares at him; still, she became hushed. He rolls his eyes and bends towards her. She widens her eyes thinking he was going to try something, but his hands reach her laptop. His fingers type vigorously and swiftly on the keyboard. Suddenly, the screen had unfreeze itself and had successfully sent her subscription to the magazine site she was on.
"Ohmygosh thank you so much!" she exclaims. She reaches to give him a hug, but he's pulled back by someone. She comes face to face with Naomi, who glaring at her.
"Mine!" she yells, sticking her tongue out at Laura; she glares at Naomi. "Stay away from my Freddy!" Freddy can only look back and forth between the two females.
"I don't want your man; I have my own!"
Naomi huffs, "Better not be! You don't want these Kung Fu Problems!"
Laura rolls her eyes, "Whatever," and goes back to her laptop. Naomi drags Freddy back to their seat.
"So I kinda staged that whole thing," states Naomi. She laughs and shrugs. "It has come to my attention that me and Freddy are the only couple that's been on here long enough and haven't had any drama brought to this show. And with Angel gone, we're gonna need to bring something to the plate as well! We gotta keep Marsha as the Total Drama Host; nobody likes Chris!" she puts on her best sneaky look and winks
"So I'm going to be sneaky like Lara Croft and make some things happen!" she looks around and smiles. "Besides I know Laura wouldn't go after Freddy…but that doesn't mean I can't be territorial either! My Mario," she sighs adoringly.
Naomi huffs across from Freddy. She grabs her Nintendo 3DS and starts playing a game, mumbling under her breath. Freddy only looks at her with astonishment, not sure what to say.
Freddy's eyebrows knot into deep confusion, "I have never seen Naomi act so territorial about me to anyone on the show. Then again I haven't really advanced towards anyone else," he trails off. However, his lips turn upwards into a large grin. "I like it."
He slaps his forehead and laughs; then he raises his fist. "Almost forgot…THIS IS TOTAL DRAMA!" He laughs at his own joke. "Man this challenge was so fun! Battling without actually harming anyone is so cool! Though I can't believe Naomi one-uped me again!" He chuckles. "Must be from all the Mario Bros. she plays. She's such an awesome girlfriend."
Alice was still scribbling in the notepad she had in her lap, crossing out things, mumbling under her breath, and crumpling paper. She went into the bathroom to let her confessional be heard, and maybe get some ideas. When she thought about what to say first, she was happy with a hint of satisfaction.
Alice walks into the room with a big smile on her face.
"Ding dong the *beep* is dead...the wicked old *beep*...the ugly old *beep*...ding dong the ugly old witch is dead" she sings, "Ahh I am so glad that she-devil is out of here; she got what was coming to her, but Angel, I must thank for what you did. Without you doing what you did, I never would hand had the confidence to find myself once again, so thank you" she says with a smile.
"And now that I have found out just who I am, it's time for me to win this competition. I must admit like Anakin Skywalker, I have gone to the 'darkside'" she quotes with her fingers, "However I won't play a dirty, filthy game like Whorgel. I will play this game without cheating or manipulation, but I will be sending everyone home; just not in a way that ends placing me in the same category as her" she reasons, "I will send them home by beating them in challenges and letting them eliminate each other while I fly under the radar to the final two; now that there are no more villains all the eliminations will be fair."
She leans into the camera determined, "But mark my words I will win; and when I do I'm throwing a huge part and inviting everyone...except Angel and Sabrina...I would invite Sabrina, but after the way she yelled at the Queen of England...yeah she's poison to have at a party...and Angel just sucks." She shurgs.
Alice is then looks uncomfortable "After my elimination, as I said, I had some time to reorganize myself and well...I must thank Robin for being there to help me through my tough time; even though I pushed him away." She pauses, "I just can't help but feel like I hurt him and it pains me to think I did that as he was a good friend...I liked him a lot" she waves her hands frantically, "Not in a romantic way! Still as a friend, so if he wants to be Adaliah's friend…I can respect that" she says taking out the notepad with scribbles and ripped out paper that says "Ways to get TJ and Yuan together".
"Now on to more important matters; they love each other. Now to get them together," she taps a pencil on her chin, "Maybe I could ask Robin to flirt with TJ to get Yuan jealous enough to push him to admit his feelings...no that won't do...it's kind of mean; and I'm nothing like Angel Queen of the *Beep* Whores; hmm maybe I could write TJ a letter form a secret admirer...no like the other plan it would end badly." She shakes her head, "Maybe I should tell Yuan about what Angel said to TJ about how he'll never love her; that might get him to put on his big boy pants and comfort her. I saw her face after that how she masked it with a happy smile; I know what a fake smile looks like even if it's someone as happy as TJ doing it. I know and what*beep*face said really, really hurt her," Alice seems lost in thought. "You know, I think I'm gonna go give her a hug" she says accidently leaving her pad of paper in the confessional as she gets up to leave.
She exits out of the confessional in search of TJ, who she actually ran into. She quickly hugs TJ before TJ could get a word out, and then leaves. TJ looked back at her confused.
"That girl is loonia than a chicken eatin bacun," she mutters before she heads into the confessional.
TJ is sitting with her legs crossed and twiddling her thumbs in her lap.
"Rome was super fun and it's swell to have that Alice girl back and Angel gone and all...but I'd give my eye-teeth and my whole coop o' chickens to know what's eatin' Wan! He was dandy before AND at the challenge! And now he's not... *she starts rubbing the back of her neck* Did I do somethin'? Evry bit o' me wants to hug him," she wraps her arms around herself for emphasis, "And tell him it's okay but...what if it's me? Should I stay away then?" she sighs, blowing her bangs away from her forehead for a second "Maybe Angel's right 'bout me... I should just call myself 'Plain Jane' now." she chuckles in spite of herself, "It's funny cuz it rhymes..."
She doesn't notice the notepad sitting casually towards the end of the counter...
Casting her eyes down as she leaves the bathroom, she goes to gather her night clothes. She had walked past Yuan, who had looked up to see her walk by. He sighed as he knew that her downcasted behavior was his fault. He sat with his chin resting on his folded hands, looking at the star lit sky; he thought back to his confessional.
Yuan has painted a visage of a screaming female figure, writhing in a sea of bluebell fire. He knows himself a low chuckle as he paints the creatures blond hair as charred, her wings tattered by bleeding fissures, her flawless skin melting off of her bones in a flurry of flaming tongues. "Someday, Angel Hale," he says, without a trace of sympathy. "Someday."
But, even Angel's demise can't brighten his spirit when he mind switches over to what the harlot said to him the previous day. "Look, I'm not worried about spending my life alone. I'm not Angel; I don't have any loneliness to bemoan, I have friends back home, a sizable fleet of admirers all over the map, and..."
He stops his arrogant tirade with a dysphoric grunt and flops dramatically against the side of the confessional. "But Tonya's different than those people. She's seen me at my absolute grossest and hasn't turned away, she stops me when I say something too hurtful and I'm not embarrassed like I should be. I feel so many different things when I'm with her..."
He doesn't try to contain his mixed emotions; his voice lowers and his posture retracts away from his usual prideful stance. "I still want to protect her," he says, and even his vocabulary seems to tone itself down. "But I also understand that I can't keep going on without her."
And now, he stands, no longer resembling the arrogant art prodigy that first boarded the jet those weeks ago. For the first time, he looks like what he is: a lovestruck teenage boy. "I can't let my family, or my past, or people like Angel influence me anymore. I don't know much about people, but I do know this. Somehow, by some insane and beautiful twist of fate, I have fallen in love with Tonya Jane."
His first real smile. "And it's time for Wan to do something about it."
He failed to see the notepad there in the confessional as well….
He stopped TJ when she had come back through and gave her a genuine smile. TJ returned the smile and hugs him tightly, relieved that she wasn't the source of his weird moods.
"Tonya…Jane….I must….breathe!" he wheezes from her death grip. She releases him, giggling at her strength.
"Sorry Wan, don't know how tuf I am sometimes," she looks down again. He lifts her head back up with a smile.
"Don't be ashamed of such strength. Speaking of strength, I must apologize for my behavior. I was confused and I needed to figure out how to tell you."
"Tell me what?" she asks.
Yuan gulps, "Well…you see…I—"
"PAUL GET YOUR LITTLE GIRLFRIEND BEFORE SHE'S MINCE MEAT!" growls Adaliah. Laura glares at her.
"I only was giving some makeup tips!" she snorts, turning up her nose, "I was ordering things online already and thought you might want some; ain't my fault you got offended!" she remarks. Adaliah's eye twitches.
"I'll show you offended!" and she gets up. Not one to back down, Laura gets closer to her. Paul rubs her arms and soothes her with whispers in her ear. Robin reasoned with Adaliah that it wasn't worth it and that it was time for everyone to go to bed. Laura and Adaliah glare at each other and go their separate ways. Paul nods a thanks to Robin and follows Laura to her seat.
"Whatsa minse meat?" asks TJ. Yuan gives a dry, defeated laugh.
"Nothing Tonya Jane, nothing at all."
Later on in the night, Yuan rose up from his sleeping position, which was as close to TJ as he possibly could with restraint. He walked to the bathroom as stealthily as he could and shut the door.
TJ, unbeknownst to Yuan, watched as he walked off. She couldn't help but stare at his lean muscles flexing as he walked. Blushing madly at the thoughts she had, she huddled back into the black robe around her body; it's his robe.
Marsha groaned and rolled over on her back, straightening her arm out to her side while her other rested on her stomach. She hadn't realized she had slapped Blaise in the face, waking him up in the process.
Blaise grumbled when Marsha's hand came in contact with his face. He got up and took a sheet with him, muttering about violent women.
He walked out of the stateroom to see that the contestants were already up, all of them but Adaliah had on their catering uniform. TJ, Yuan, Robin, and Alice were already in the kitchen while Laura, Paul, Naomi, and Freddy were looking at him. Adaliah had an eyebrow raised at his current disheveled state.
"Kicked out of the bed, huh?" Paul inquired. Blaise pouted.
"Actually slapped in my sleep," he muttered. Laura covered her mouth and walked towards the kitchen, eyeing Naomi along the way. Naomi eyed her back and walked behind her, as if challenging her. Blaise clapped Freddy and Paul on their shoulders when they turned toward the direction of their girlfriends.
"Seems like I'm not the only one with a feisty woman huh?" and he walks back into the stateroom. He turns over his shoulder; the boys gulp and walk into the kitchen.
"By the way, get ready for Shanghai today."
The rest of the morning went along smoothly, especially since TJ learned to control her thoughts as well as her blushing when it came to Yuan. Robin had brought Adaliah her plate; she appreciated the action. Alice and Robin sat neck to her. Naomi sat arguing with Laura over who had the better boyfriend; those said boyfriends were too busy playing FIFA 15 to notice.
Marsha skimmed through information on her phone while Blaise sipped on wine.
"Don't you think that it's too early to be drinking?" she asks. Blaise looked at her with a blank stare.
"With the emotions coming from the people on this show, I think I'm late on the drinking." Marsha laughed and looked out the window. She looked past the fluffy white clouds to the vibrant buildings and ant-like people. The plush trees in different areas in contrast to the large white skyscrapers and buildings stood out by the oriental and ancient buildings. She smiled at the ecological structure of this part of China she gets to see.
She suddenly feels the jet begin to lower, thankful that she parks wherever she wants. The jet lands at the very entrance that the group will be entering.
The simple, yet commanding building's entrance welcomed more and more people that were entering it in multiple costumes and attire. The teens look on with curiosity at the different people going in to the building they were soon to compete in; the huge sign that names this building stands out proud to be seen from a mile away: ChinaJoy Expo.
Naomi shook and convulsed violently with happiness as she read the name; Freddy held on to her with an equal amount of excitement.
"As you can see, we'll be competing at the ChinaJoy Expo, one of the largest game conventions around the world," states Blaise proudly.
"Let's go in and head to our challenge," says Marsha. The teens and Blaise follow Marsha into the building. Paul and Alice keep Freddy and Naomi from rushing to every exhibit that passes their path. Laura frowns slightly at every big chested girl she comes across in every paint, makeup, and outfit known to man. She glances at her own chest and sighs.
Robin assesses every inch of the building, while Adaliah watches her surrounding with a scathing look, daring anyone to bother her. TJ looked around at the people curiously, clutching Yuan's arm the whole time. He didn't mind the contact; it helped soothe his nerve of actually telling the girl how he feels about her.
A guy painted as a green alien walked beside Blaise subconsciously; Blaise stiffened slightly and moved away from the guy. Alice didn't get a chance to comment on the green man because the group stops.
In front of them stood a gaming machine. It looked like a large scanner with a screen on its side. A platform was planted under the scanner, inviting the group with its sleek, metallic presence.
"Our challenge today is one of virtual reality!" Marsha says to the group.
"She was heavily inspired by the movie Virtual," explains Blaise. Marsha gives him a sideways look.
"Ruin the mood why don't you," she mutters. She then plants a smile on her face.
"Alright guys, here's how today's challenge is going to go," she starts, "You'll actually be in a video game; a classic one of course."
"Despite the big difference of it being a virtual reality, there are some of these games that you can actually be hurt in." Blaise adds in with a small smirk. Marsha wiped the smirk off with a jab to his ribs, an action he glares at.
She giggles then turns her attention back to the teens, "The way to win this challenge is to be the last one surviving in their game."
Naomi jumps excitedly, "Do we get to pick our games?"
"Unfortunately no," answers Blaise, "The virtual reality decides that for you."
"Also," pipes in Marsha, "The way to know that you're out of your virtual reality is when you feel a small tug; but more than likely you won't land back in the platform the same way you go in."
"How did you guys get a virtual reality machine inside of one of the biggest game conventions in the world?" asks Freddy suddenly. Marsha shrugged.
"Blaise dated a Hatsune cosplayer that works here."
"How many girls has Blaise dated internationally?" asks Adaliah with a lip quirked amusingly. Blaise's face flushed red.
"Irrelevant," he answers, causing Marsha to laugh. She claps her hands.
"Alright ladies and gents, step onto the platform and get ready for the countdown."
The group of teens gather onto the platform, squishing in closer than normal contact.
Alice took a deep breath, mentally preparing herself for the challenge.
Robin looked to Adaliah and she nodded her head with acknowledgement and encouragement.
TJ shook giddily with happiness, brushing against Yuan. He looked at her to see her blushing slightly.
Paul kissed Laura's forehead, and Laura stuck her tongue out in Naomi's direction. Naomi returned the favor while Freddy smiled with his eyes closed.
Yuan looked around to see nothing but pure darkness. He prayed that it was just his eyes not adjusted to the dark yet. He jumped slightly when blue lights began to illuminate walls that reached his waist. His mind began to click that his was inside of a maze. Suddenly small white orbs glowed within the walls of the maze. His mind began to click on which game he was in, and the fancy music that began to play.
Yuan cursed under his breath as he realized he was now playing as Pacman. "Damn it all to the wretched ghosts." He began to sprint.
Robin blinked to adjust to the bright lights around him. When his vision cleared, he noticed he was on a single, purple platform. Confused, he looked above him, only to notice more platforms above him; a single ladder went all the way to the top.
"Where am I?" he asks aloud, going towards the ladder. He doesn't make it far because his answer is given to him; the large, vicious, brown ape known as Donkey Kong jumped in front of him, baring his sharp teeth in a taunting manner; a woman slung on his shoulder. His jump shook the platform, causing Robin to fall on his back. Donkey Kong then climbs the ladder, taking it with him once he reaches the top.
Robin looked up and glared at the ape, who threw the woman beside him and grabbed a barrel that came from nowhere.
"This is how we're gonna play?" he asks getting up, "Then let's play." Donkey Kong throws the barrel.
Naomi stretched her arms and cracked her knuckles; she recognized her game immediately. She looked at her surroundings, which was a wharf. Multiple boats were docking and loading behind her, as if she wasn't there. Pouting at the lack of communication, she treads forward if defensive mode. A figure jumps out from a boat ready to strike. His blonde hair flows in the wind as his eyes narrow at Naomi. Jumping back and forth in his fighting stance, the figure snarls.
A large ROUND ONE pops up above her and the figure and Naomi grins manically.
"You want some of this Ken?" she taunts, "THIS IS STREET FIGHTER II, BRING IT!" Ken yells a battle cry and charges; Naomi meets him halfway.
Alice crouched down and looked in her surroundings. She noticed that she was in some type of vehicle that had a lot of glowing buttons and levers; seeing the chair in front of the controls, she took a seat. Looking through the small window, Alice sees an empty space with nothing but blue lines drawn like a grid. Reclining in the chair, she was thinking of games that had blue grids and a vehicle that she can't recall. Suddenly, a massive shake moves the grid and multiple walls rise from the ground. A red vehicle drives slowly up from behind one of the walls; the vehicle was a tank. Her mind clicked on the familiar grid she was now placed upon.
"Of all games, why Tron?" she exclaims, pulling a lever to fire.
Laura pouted with frustration as she looked at her surroundings; she landed in a damn wrestling ring. The white platform secured by the red ropes stood in the center of a huge stadium with multiple people shouting and jumping in the backgrounds. She turned around to look at the ramp where music began to play and a tape played on the screen.
A 6'10 man with dark hair, muscular build, and narrowed eyes walked out hauntingly on the very ramp she was looking at. She edge closer to the farthest side of the ring, farthest from the man coming closer. When she looked up at the screen again, her mind clicked on who this man was. Even though Bastion is the only boy in their sibling relationship, he still watches wrestling and she's very thankful for that right now. The man that was approaching the ring is the Undertaker.
TJ looked down to see she was on top of a blocked pyramid. The multiple colors looked real pretty in her eyes. She doesn't even know where she is; Momma neva said anything about some blocks in a game! She jumped to another block, thinking that's what she's supposed to do, and the block changes color when she lands on it.
"What the cowbell?" she says. She jumps to another and another to get the same result.
"I think Ima get the hang of this!" she exclaims, jumping on all the blocks again. She jumped on one that she had previously landed on; the color had changed back to its original color.
"Phooey," she pouts, how she gonna fix this one?
Paul phased right into the middle of a track inside of a car. He looked around to see that it was green fields with multiple billboards. He swerved, realizing that he was actually driving. He straightened up before he hit the edge of the track.
A countdown popped up in front of him, a second being lost swiftly. Of all the classic games he had played, he had no idea where he was. He wished he had expanded his gaming to more classic games than the games he played on his Xbox and Playstation.
Knowing that the countdown actually meant something, he pushed down harder on the pedal, determined to beat the clock.
Adaliah looked around her to see she's on a street of a downtown setting. People walked in stores and went by their everyday lives as if she wasn't there. Her eyes narrow as she tries to figure out where she is. Twin sais are holstered on both sides of her hips with a red ribbon tied to the handles. Before she could fully inspect them, three running men in yellow ninja garbs approach her with weapons. She raises her eyebrow at them, as if they really had a chance. Before she could do anything, three turtles run beside her, ready to strike the yellow ninja men.
Wait a minute, turtles?
Freddy has phased into a ship, looking at a 3D dimensional space with craters and approaching ships. Of course he knows he's in the Star Wars game, he wouldn't! He gets to be Luke Skywalker, and he's going to enjoy every minute of it.
"As the pilot of X-Wing, I shall fly us to victory!" he shouts, even though no one else is there. He sighs happily and starts to maneuver easily with the ship's control.
"And I shall do it with smashing!" he exclaims happily, "I wish Naomi was here to see this."
He started to shoot his laser at the upcoming ships and meteors, laughing with glee.
Yuan ran through the orbs as fast as he could with a pink and orange ghost on his trail. Panting, he cut a corner of the maze…then another…and another until the ghosts had lost him. He leaned down with his hands on his knees breathing heavily.
"Stupid ghosts," he wheezes, "I feel severe empathy for Pacman now." Suddenly the red ghost is in sight heading his way.
"Dammit," he takes off running again.
The grid shook as Alice took another shot at the opposing tank; it took a shot at her as well. She crouched down when the shot landed beside her tank, causing her to move in the air. Alice looked out of the small window to see the tank approaching.
"Seriously! Since when did Tron have tanks?!" she exclaims. She then takes a deep breath, "I can do this, I can do this, I can do this!"
She pulls the lever again, her aim perfect on the traveling tank.
TJ was still jump on the block tops of the pyramid, almost getting all of the colors the same color. Giddy, she jumped up and down on one of the blocks.
"Take that city slickas, this Plain Jane got it right!" she looked down to see she was changing the color repeatedly. She stopped and giggled, allowing the blocks to match in color; they began to glow.
As they glowed, the pyramid started to shake, growing in size. The colors had reset, as well as a coiled snake on top of several ones. TJ looked at the transformation in wonder.
"Holy crap on a cracka," she gasps and covers her mouth at what just came out of it, "I'm sorry Momma!"
Eyeing the snakes, she jumps to a block to change the color; the snakes move in a similar fashion.
"Ima make it up to you Momma by taking out these snakes and makin you prowd!" she says determined.
Naomi dodged a flying kick from Ken, who didn't have much longer before he loses. She closed her hands together and took a deep breath. Jumping into the air, she began to kick in a circular motion as hard as she could, which lands on Ken in multiples hits; he falls.
WINNER stands out proudly in above her and the fallen Ken. She looks up with wide eyes and back down to Ken; her eyes land on her hands and feet…a large grin splits her whole face brightly.
"I…just…did…a…BICYCLE KICK like Lui Kang!" she says happily. "I don't know if it was the game or if it was me…but it was sooooo awesome!" then she paused.
"How did I accomplish a Mortal Kombat move in a Street Fighter game?" her answer isn't what she expects. Her surroundings change to the scenery of a Chinese market street filled with dozens of people; a woman in geisha-like garbs and boots steps up. Her dark buns sit poised on top of her head as she gives off her fighting stance to Naomi.
"Now I get to fight Chun-Li?! Best…Challenge…Ever!"
Paul had managed to dodge the obstacles in his way down the highway he was driving on.
He cursed that he only had a minute left to get to the finish line. He had to win this; he couldn't disappoint Laura a second time today. A car was heading towards his way swiftly and fast. He couldn't change his course on the track; one wrong move and he'll be crashing into the billboards. Seeing that the car wasn't going to budge, he pushed his foot on the gas petal hard; he wasn't going to budge either.
If he was going to crash into something, why not a car?
The cars were so close to each other, Paul could feel the vibrations of it as if he were in it as well. He pushed the petal as hard as he could; it was now or never.
Adaliah looked at the fallen yellow ninjas around her, pleased at her work with new weapons. The turtles that accompanied her kept moving, as if she wasn't there. Rolling her eyes, she knew she had to follow them to win the games. They don't get too far when more yellow clad ninjas show up prepared to fight. She charges with her sais and strikes on of the ninjas down, but is struck down herself by a purple ninja.
Grunting, Adaliah hops back up to kill the ninja that dared hit her with a low blow. Seeing that most of them were getting attacked by the three turtles, she turned her attention to the yellow foes that were going to attack them behind their back.
Growling, she charges for the ninjas with a vengeance. She strikes one in the back; another one is stabbed in the neck; one of the ninjas was swept under their legs. All of this collateral damage was due to Adaliah. And she took pleasure in that.
Freddy was hooting and hollering at the smashing of asteroids and ships coming his way. He performed swirls and spins in his ships, not a care in the world if he were to crash. A rumble of the ship made him stop. He looked around, not seeing anything that was rumble worthy to crash into. That's when he saw it; a large metallic ship that was in his way.
"I know that this isn't the ship that I'm looking for," he says as he approaches the ship, hands ready to fire.
"But this is still going to be fun to bring down."
Robin managed to jump over another barrel that Donkey Kong thrown at him. The woman couldn't scream anymore due to being duct taped…how he couldn't figure out. All of this cardio was starting to wear him down and he couldn't have that.
Donkey Kong roars and throws a much larger barrel. Robin looks up bewildered.
"You've got to be kidding me!" Robin dashed to the next ladder before the barrel could reach him. If the ape could show more expressions, he'd scowl at Robin right now.
Laura was running for her life; the Undertaker was behind her. The fighting bell had already rung to begin the match. She usually never backs down from a fight; but this is the Undertaker! She'll be damned if she allows her pretty face to be mauled by this madman!
The Undertaker just walks calmly behind her, his long black coat billowing behind him. She slides out of the ring and up the ramp, clearly wanting to get out of there. Unfortunately, the game doesn't really have an interactive backstage, so she's stuck between a booing crowd, the ramp, the ring, and the Undertaker.
Exasperated, she decides if she's going to go out now, it's going with a bang. Catching him by surprise, she charges for the Undertaker; her efforts cause him to fall back on the ground. Proud of herself, she goes to one of the post to jump on him, but he catches her and slams her on the ground.
3! Ding! Ding! Ding!
Laura felt a familiar tug; she closed her eyes. When she opened them again, she was right back at the convention with Marsha and Blaise. She found the two in a tangled heap, both with controllers in their hands. It seems that they were fighting in the middle of a video game…and hadn't noticed Laura's return; she huffed.
TJ laughed gleefully as she jumped on the cubes in the pyramid. She had managed to take care of the snakes, but some more creature things showed up, giving her a run for her money.
"I don't know what these thangs are, but I gotta keep goin'!" she went about it like she would a snake, but it seemed to be completely different. They landed on the same block, and it begun to glow once more.
TJ looked with amazement because of the creature beside her. Its round, long nose and round eyes stared at her with the same look. As she was about to touch it, she felt a familiar tug and blinked to find herself back at the convention.
"Oh come on! That isn't even legal!" complains Marsha.
"Obviously it is if I'm still whooping you in this game!" exclaims Blaise, gesturing and making a noise with a whip. Marsha growls and starts pressing the buttons on the controls aggressively.
She turned around and looked to see Marsha and Blaise fighting during a video game and Laura sitting cross-legged watching with interest.
"What are y'all do—" Laura had covered TJ's mouth and placed a finger to her own.
"Shut up, this is hilarious!" she whispers. TJ could only nod until Laura removed her hand.
Alice had finally defeated that blasted tank and had transported onto a black and blue lined motorcycle. She now had on a full black and blue bodysuit with a helmet on her head. Various spots of the now clear grid, other different colored bikers are revving up their engines and moving. Confused on what to do, she sees a red and black biker drive in front of the yellow and black biker. The red and black biker's 'dust' was actually like a beam of light that followed him. As soon as the yellow and black driver had driven through the beam, he disintegrated.
Realizing how this round was going to work, Alice frowned.
"Oh *beep*" she said. The red and black biker had charged towards her and did a quick swerve of his beam in a swift motion…Alice felt a familiar tug and was back in the space of the convention. She sees TJ and Laura looking earnestly at Blaise and Marsha, who were both now on their feet once more with determined looks on their faces.
"What game are they playing?" she asked. TJ and Laura both shrug. Accepting that, she had another feeling of a tug on her; a feeling that she's missing something…
Yuan ran towards the large orb that forms at the corners of the playfield. He smirked, finally he could show these ectoplasm freaks what for! When he entered it, the ghosts following him turned blue with grim white eyes and lines for lips. Sneering with self-glee, he chased after the ghost laughing maniacally along the way. After two of the ghosts had been 'eaten', he ran after the last one through the crossed pathway. Instead of being on the opposite side of the Pacman field, he was transported into another game.
He blinked incredulously, as he was now in the game with Donkey Kong…and Robin was above him on another platform.
Panting, he exasperates, "What…the…hell?!"
Adaliah was tearing the multicolored ninjas apart left and right. Her weapons were quite impressive to maneuver; she'd have to get some of these when she gets out of this game. As she walked through the door for the next battle, everything goes black. Cursing under her breath, she goes forward anyway; a virtual reality game does not scare her.
When everything becomes color again, she finds out she's behind the wheel of a race car…and Paul is racing right beside her. Grabbing the wheel, she smirks with glee.
Naomi beat Chun-Li easily; she finished her off with a jump kick and cried victory….or so she thought.
"Oh yea, I'm good; Oh yea, kick butt—AH!" Chun-Li was back at her with a critical hit of her infamous 'multiple kicks'. Naomi flew back to the invisible barrier that kept her concealed into the game. That barrier, however, decided it didn't want to be there at that particular moment; she flew out into the black spectrum. Instead of warping into another game like she predicted, she remained in the darkness she was consumed in.
Floating in the blackened space, Naomi looked around with wide eyes. "I'm like in space…that I can breathe in! I love this show!" she slightly bent her knees into a launching position and braced herself. Taking a deep breath and closing her eyes, she pushed forward, charging into the nothingness she was now confined in.
"WEEEE!" she exclaims, flying around into the spectrum. "I'M LIKE AN ASTRONAUT!"
Blaise notices the virtual machine was making static noises. Marsha was still pressing on the controller buttons vigorously.
"Um Marsh?" he asks. She ignores him. Sighing and sending a silent prayer that he doesn't die, he creeps closer to the plug of their game and pulls it out.
Alice, Laura, and TJ gasp when the screen goes black and look to Marsha's murderous glare that's directed at Blaise.
"Before you try to kill me," he starts with his hands up, "I think you may want to look at the machine."
She complies but not before she gives him a 'don't think this is over' look. Her glare turns into concern when she sees the machine static in areas.
"Damn it Blaise I thought you had it checked before we let them in there!" she demands.
"Hey don't look at me! I did check it!" he says defending himself. He pulls a remote out of his back pocket and presses a button. A screen appears that's split into sections; theses sections look exactly like the games that they were in.
"Why wasn't I informed that we could have been watching them the entire time?"
"YOU COULD HAVE BEEN WATCHING US!?"
"I was on TV y'all!"
"Are you serious?" were all exclaimed by Alice, TJ, Laura, and Marsha at the same time. Blaise raised his hands in surrender.
"Easy ladies! I actually just remembered it was in my back pocket; I was playing a game," he replies lifting one of his eyes, directing the last part to his best friend. Marsha graced her features with a light blush and cleared her throat.
"Back to the task at hand; we need to make sure everyone is okay in there."
Blaise nodded and pressed another button. Some of the screens disappeared and left 4 of them. One consisted of Robin and Yuan.
"How did they end up merged together?" Alice asked. Marsha shook her head.
"I don't know. I didn't have it programmed for merges, but I guess that adds in some better challenges for them."
"As long as Wan is okay," says TJ. Laura rolls her eyes while Alice smiles; that nagging feeling in her head intensified, but Alice couldn't place what was wrong.
The next screen beside Yuan and Robin was Freddy dodging and shooting meteors and others ships in his virtual space.
Under his screen was Paul and Adaliah driving fast on a racing track. Laura smiled smugly, her man was still in the game and could potentially win this; what does she mean potentially, of course he will! But Adaliah was in the same game as he was and that concerned her as far as Adaliah's ruthlessness went. Her point was proven when Adaliah pushed another car off of the track that was in her way.
Beside their screen was only a black screen. Before any of them could be concerned, Naomi popped out of nowhere flying around. Marsha sighed with relief until she realized that Naomi wasn't playing in any of the selected games.
"Blaise, go get a technician!"
"You don't have to tell me twice," and he was off to find a technician in the large convention.
"I'm going to pull a Courtney and sue this virtual company," Marsha growled.
"You could just call…," Alice starts but doesn't say anything further when Laura and TJ give her a 'please don't finish that' look; she knew they were right.
Robin wiped the sweat off of his brow, clearly exhausted. Donkey Kong was more than he expected; having Yuan here didn't help at all. It would be easy to just push him in the barrels…if he wasn't dodging the devil's creations himself.
"Look out you insolent bottomfeeder!" yells Yuan, who just jumped over something large. Shaking his head back into the game, Robin looked ahead just in time to jump over another barrel.
"Who are you to call me a bottomfeeder?!" demands Robin.
"Obviously someone who just saved your insignificant life!" he retorts, "At least you know you're insolent!"
Robin's eyes flash as he turns back to Yuan. Preparing to give that gorilla, not Donkey Kong, a piece of his mind, Robin closes his fist and marches towards Yuan; he doesn't notice Yuan's attention isn't focused on him.
"Look here you—" Yuan pushes him off of the ledge, not before Robin managed to kick Yuan's leg up and causes him to fall with him.
"Why did you do that!?" Robin shouts, obviously aggravated. Yuan glares and points back at the platform that is getting smaller and smaller; Donkey Kong had thrown the largest barrel Robin had ever seen. There was no way he could have dodged it; and Yuan had saved him from it.
Instead of thanking him, he gave him a curt nod. Yuan couldn't accept that; but he couldn't respond because he felt a tug. They both appeared back into the convention with eyes on them. Yuan looked to the screen and seen where Donkey Kong was laughing victoriously.
Robin scratched his head and walked over to Alice. Sneering at Robin, Yuan turned towards TJ direction and softened immediately. Seeing her beaming at him, swelled his heart painfully. She raced to him and hugged him tightly; she didn't blush noticeably this time.
"I'm so proud of ya Wan!" she exclaims.
"I didn't win the challenge—" he starts. TJ waves it off.
"It ain't always bout winnin' Wan," she says smiling, "You made it far, that's what mattas"
Yuan took a deep breath; he knew this would be the best time to tell her. "Tonya Jane, I—"
"I got the technician!" announces Blaise. Yuan throws his hands up in the air in exasperation.
"Oh damn it all to hell!" he screams, scaring TJ slightly, and storms off away from the crowd. TJ moves to go after him, but Marsha stops her.
"Let him cool off sweetheart, trust me," she says. TJ gives her a small smile, still looking in the direction Yuan ran off in.
More and more asteroids were shooting towards Freddy at an alarming rate; he was shooting as fast as he could while he dodged the rectangular, 3D structures in his space game.
Paul had managed to get ahead of Adaliah in the race; he knew he could get this challenge. Adaliah growled and shoved other cars out of her way; she'll be damned if she let this get out of her grasp.
More ships were weaving through the meteors and asteroids to destroy Freddy. Determined to win this game, Freddy shifted into overdrive and shooting with all his might.
Adaliah was now tied with Paul on the track; all it would take would be to shift over slightly and make him crash.
All it would take for Freddy to clear the final level would be to take down the last of these ships.
She makes her choice. Paul looked at her through his window.
Freddy secured a seatbelt that he didn't know was there before.
Naomi froze in midair, and she felt a tug.
Adaliah takes a deep breath.
Freddy takes a deep breath.
Paul takes a deep breath.
The teens turn to see Naomi and Adaliah back in the convention; Naomi with a satisfied smile while Adaliah was glowering. Marsha and Blaise visibly relaxed that Naomi was safe and thanked the technician. Marsha gave the man a small kiss on the cheek; he blushed but Blaise ushered him away before he could say anything about it.
Laura smirked and laughed at Adaliah's and Naomi's loss. Both Adaliah and Naomi turn to glare at the girl; Naomi was having fun at playing this part while Adaliah was simply annoyed by the girl.
Before anyone else could say anything about what just happened, Paul popped up out of nowhere. Laura fought back the irritation she felt that he didn't win because he came in second; and she missed his embrace.
Naomi was now ecstatic when she realized who the last player was. She turned to look at the screen to see the GAME OVER glowing brightly.
"It seems that Freddy has won the challenge today!" announces Marsha. As she says this, Freddy materializes. Everyone claps, willingly and forcefully, for Freddy's win.
Blaise walks to the teens with tablets in his hands.
"Now you guys know the drill; it's time to decide who goes home."
Naomi thought to choose at random, but due to recent events she must play her part.
Yuan chose that ungrateful buffoon; he decides to show acts of kindness but doesn't receive gratitude…how dare he!?
TJ closed her eyes and pressed whichever face came across her finger.
Robin had to choose accordingly; Laura wasn't providing any more progress since Greenfield and Louisiana plus her recent annoyingness; it's her time to go. If only he could choose two people…Yuan would go with her.
Alice chose to go with Paul; as much as she's happy for the couple, it's between those two to go. She has too much going for the alliance of Robin and Adaliah, and she has to get Yuan and TJ together.
Adaliah chose Laura; she needed to choose someone and why not the girl who irritated her.
Laura went with Naomi. If she could choose two she'd pick Adaliah with her as well. The nerve of those two trying to pick fights with her!
Blaise collected the tablets for Marsha to announce who will be leaving the competition this time. Marsha sighed in resignation.
"As much as it displeases me to ask one of you to leave, tonight I must ask for….Laura to leave."
"WHAT?!" asks Laura and Paul simultaneously. Laura looked like she wanted to explode in a fit of rage; Paul looked defeated. They just got together officially; and he's been trying to prove to Laura that he can fight for her, even if she didn't ask.
As Laura walked to Blaise to leave, Paul stepped up.
"Wait! I ask to go in her place!" he shouts. Laura stops and turns on her heels towards him. Her eyes are wide with a quivering on her lips. Paul smiles sadly and approaches her.
"You don't have to do this, Paul," she says. Paul grabs her hands.
"Yes I do. You deserve to be on this show just as much as anyone; and my feelings run so deep that I'm willing to leave to see you shine. Show everyone who Laura Pierno is and I'll meet your family after you win this." He kisses her hands, lets go of them, and with a smile begins to walk away with Blaise. Laura watches with somber eyes as the guy she started to care very hard for walked out of the convention in her place.
TJ and Marsh both have the same lovestruck expression on their faces. Adaliah looked annoyed that Laura was still here. The other had neutral expression; all of them were being fiercely glared at by Laura. Blaise returned to the others in record time followed by the sound of the jet starting.
Marsha gives the teens a tiny smile, "Let's go ladies and gentlemen. Another challenge has ended and another one will begin tomorrow; I would let you guys in on some nice tourist spots here, I'm afraid I'll be the one to get lost." She links arms with Blaise and the two lead the contestants out of the convention back into the jet for another night to complete.
Yuan was the first to head into the bathroom this time, as he would like to vent on the fact that everything that happened today managed to keep him from admitting his feelings for Tonya Jane; and he finally noticed the notepad. Opening it to the page marked, his face lost all color; the only things that he could comprehend in the marked, scratched off, and ripped pages were "TJ comments on his family", "Secret admirer", and "Wouldn't end well."
Not caring he was being irrational, his heart was shattered into micro pieces.
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