And the real story starts now…
Fantasy Land of Mushrooms
All was peaceful and normal at Toad Town. The Toads were walking around doing their stuff and usual business as well as chatting and playing with each other.
In summary, it was a nice and peaceful day.
The Shine-Rank Tailor Store was doing business like always. "Get out of here! We don't allow poor people like you to come in and shop here!" the fat shopkeeper said to the commonly-dressed Toad.
"So mean… I'm gonna report this to the court!" the Toad cried as he ran away.
"Nya, nya! Come back when you're a little richer!" the shopkeeper said while sticking out his tongue.
"What was that?"
Several Toads were shocked by the sudden sound of crashing. They all gathered that store and looked up at the roof just as the shopkeeper came out. "What's the ruckus here?"
"Look! There's a house on top of the store!" one of the Toads pointed out.
"What are you talking about?" The shopkeeper looked up at his store and to his surprise, saw that the Shine model which was on top the roof had been indeed crushed by a house. "What the heck?"
Reimu got up and rubbed her eyes and shook her head to get back to her senses. She looked around and saw her guests laying all over the tatami, but they were getting up one by one. "Whoa… What a ride…" Marisa said. "I wonder what that was all about-ze…?"
"Is it over?" Reisen asked.
"Seems to be the case…" Reimu said. "Let's go outside first and see if anything else happened." Ignoring the door that normally led to the backyard, she went into the hallway and headed for the front door.
"Hey, where are all the trees?" Cirno brought up as she looked out the backyard door.
Reimu walked out from the front door and the first thing she saw was the sky. A question mark appeared over her head as she witnessed this strange sight. She was expecting to see stands being set up and several inhabitants of Gensokyo moving around being busy, but what she saw instead were clouds and not to mention mushroom-shaped buildings in the distance. She walked up to the front porch where the donation box is and then looked down from there, and gradually, her eyes widened more and more until she yelled out loud, "WHAT IN THE WORLD?"
"Reimu!" shouted the voice of Marisa. She rushed over to Reimu along with the others and the witch tapped her in the shoulder. "Reimu! You won't believe it! It seems that your shrine is currently on top of something!"
"I found out about that just now!" Reimu told her. "Look!" She pointed down and the others all looked down to see several Toads down there looking back at them.
"Mushroom… people…?" Alice said with an odd expression.
"Um… I don't think this is anywhere near Hakurei Shrine…" Sanae pointed out.
"I don't even think this is Genoskyo anymore…" Remilia added.
"Wow! I've never seen living creatures like these!" Aya said excitedly while snapping shots from her camera at the Toads. "This is such a great scoop!"
The shopkeeper moved back until he could see the people up there and shouted as loud as he could, "Hey you! What are you doing up there with your house? Get off of my store at once!"
"Your store?" Reimu said curiously. "Um… Look, we have no idea how we ended up here in the first place! We are totally lost and confused about our surroundings too!"
"I don't care! This is my store and you've just damaged the mascot up there!"
"Shines didn't originate as mascots for you!" a random Toad told him.
As the shopkeeper continued shouting at them, Reimu turned to her friends and asked, "Um… What do we do…?"
Marisa simply shrugged as she had no idea what to do also. "Maybe we should go down there and talk with them in a better way…" Youmu suggested. "It's not easy if we talk from here."
"Yeah, let's just get down there first," Reisen agreed. "We need to find out what this place is. It can't be possible that we just end up in a foreign place all of a sudden."
"Oh well… No other method then…" Reimu sighed. She then jumped off the front porch hoping to float down slowly, but instead, she dropped straight down and fell into a bush which soften her landing and prevented any fatalities. "OW!"
"Whoa! You sure are daring to jump down from there just like that!" a random Toad commented.
Reimu got up and dusted the leaves off her clothe and said, "What? I was supposed to fly down slowly! But…"
"YAAA!" Marisa suddenly crashed down with her broom next to Reimu. She wasn't as lucky as she hit the road instead. She got up again seemingly unharmed and rubbed her butt saying, "Ow! How come I didn't fly?"
As Reimu was wondering how they weren't able to fly like they normally could, the shopkeeper walked up in front of her and said loudly, "Listen, young lady! You get that house of yours out of my store's rooftop at once!"
"I told you already that I have no idea what happened!" Reimu explained to him nervously. "Just a few seconds ago my shrine was built on grass, but it suddenly popped up here after a column of light shined down!"
"I don't care what story you have to tell me!" the shopkeeper shouted back. "And look at the clothes you're wearing! How very old fashion and unstylish! You people have no sense for fashion at all, don't you?" He pulled up a part of his clothing and boasted, "You see the fine texture and fabric of my clothes? Only sophisticated people like me are suited to wear something like this! I bet you don't even have the money to afford a good pair of socks! Haha!" Suddenly, Remilia, with her parasol held over her head using one hand, dropped down in front of him and lifted him up by the collar. "Hey!"
"You better watch your mouth, fatso!" she said in an annoyed voice. "A boastful bastard like you doesn't fit with those so-called fine clothes that you are wearing!"
"Let go of me… Or else I'll call the cops…"
Reimu grabbed Remilia's hands and forced her to let go of the shopkeeper who quickly backed away in fear. "We better not cause a ruckus," Reimu said to her. "We don't know where we are and it can be troublesome if we get into trouble with the law here."
"I never liked rude and boastful people like him, hmph!" Remilia said.
"Says the person who boasts about her strength and wealth…" Marisa said under her breath.
"By the way, Reimu, how come didn't slowly float down earlier?" Remilia asked the shrine maiden.
"I said earlier that I wasn't able to fly," Reimu told her. "Even Marisa couldn't fly with her broom!"
"Is that the case? Yet I can," Remilia said. She flapped her wings and hovered above the ground slightly, much to the amazement of the bystanders.
"Look! She's floating above the ground!"
"She has wings!"
"Perhaps it's because we rely on our wings to fly rather than your own method flying," Aya said as she lowered onto the ground with Cirno accompanying her.
"Having wings makes you the strongest!" Cirno claimed.
Just then, Toads dressed as police officers made their way over to the place and the bystanders quickly made way for them. "Excuse me," one of the police officers said. "We would like to ask you a few questions regarding… your sudden appearance…"
Reimu let out a sigh and thought that this was going to be a long day.
As the crowd gathered in front of the tailor store, a certain person appeared and asked the Toad at the back of the crowd. "Excuse me, but what is going on here?"
The Toad turned around and was surprised to see the person, and immediately bowed down. "Princess Peach!"
Upon hearing this, all the Toads immediately moved asides and all bowed down in presence of the blond princess dressed in pink—Princess Peach Toadstool.
"You can all stand up now," Peach said to them kindly, and they all did.
After standing back up, the same Toad said to her, "Some strange people popped up with their house on top of the tailor store. The police are interviewing about this matter."
"I see… That's something I've never heard of before…" Peach thought. "Maybe I should go see these people myself."
Her chancellor Toadsworth said to her, "Be careful, princess. Those people may be foul characters."
"Don't worry; things won't be as bad as you say," Peach told him before advancing through the path in between the crowd.
The police officers saw the princess coming, so they made way for her as well. Peach walked up to Reimu and the others and waved and smiled kindly to them. "Hello! Welcome to Mushroom Kingdom!"
"Mushroom Kingom?" Reimu said curiously. "Is that what this place is called?"
"Very fitting if you ask me-ze," Marisa commented as she looked left to right at all the mushroom people and architecture.
"I am Princess Peach, the ruler of this place," Peach explained to them. "I'm sorry if the citizens frightened you somewhat. It would appear that you not from around here."
"Truer words cannot be said…" Reimu said with a sigh. "We have no idea how we ended up here in the first place. It all happened so suddenly…"
"That's quite surprising to hear. How about you and your friends come over to my castle and then I will treat you? We can talk more about this over there."
"But princess!" Toadsworth protested. "What if they…?"
Peach didn't give him the chance to finish speaking however. "Don't worry, Toadsworth. I'm sure they are nice people. They're simply lost lambs that got separated from the place they come from. It's obvious they would be scared and confused out here, so we must treat them with kindness and make them feel welcomed." She looked at the shrine and said, "As for their house, we'll have the crane come and bring it down."
Reimu looked at the friends and said, "Well? What do you think?"
"No other idea," Remilia said with a shrug. "Might as well take advantage of everything we have at the moment."
The situation was soon settled. The crane was eventually summoned to remove the shrine to an empty field just so that the shopkeeper can stop bickering. As for Reimu and the others, they were following Princess Peach and Toadsworth down the path leading to the castle. This also gave them the perfect opportunity to get a better look at the scenery around them, and they are without doubt very amazed at what they were seeing.
"Ooooh! Everything indeed is mushroom-related here-ze!" Marisa commented when she saw all the Toads, mushroom-shaped buildings, and Goombas.
Alice looked around and saw Bob-ombs walking casually on the grass. "Are those automated toys or what?" she wondered.
Nitori looked and saw Cheep-cheeps on sitting on the grass chatting with random Toads. "Wow! A talking fish that can breathe on land!"
Reisen noticed a Toad walking towards a pipe that was sticking out of the ground. The Toad jumped into the pipe but never came back out. "Okay…" she murmured to herself. "My eyes aren't going crazy on me, aren't they…?"
Sanae looked up and noticed that the clouds had eyes and she could've sworn that they were looking back at her and even blinking. "And I thought Gensokyo was strange when I first moved there…" she said. "This place is even stranger…"
Aya took a lot of photos nonstop as she followed her companions. "When I get back, I'm going to make on heck of a news article! Hoohoo! I can't wait!" She noticed a Paratroopa. "Hey, a flying turtle!"
"Not surprising since Genji can fly too," Reimu reminded her, "and without wings."
After a bit of walking, the group eventually arrived at the main gate and then went through it, heading for the castle itself.
A pair of guards was standing in front of the gate and one of them had a frog next to him. The guard on the right looked at the frog and said to his partner, "Nice pet!"
"Thanks!" that guard said. "His name is Wart! I've been looking after him since he was a tadpole and he's grown attached to me! He's the best friend I've ever had and is even more faithful than a dog!"
The guards noticed the princess and thus opened the door to let her and the guests in. They entered one by one, but Cirno, who was last in line, stopped in front of the door and looked at the frog. "What's the matter, little girl?" the left guard asked her. "Go on in!"
"Frog!" Cirno suddenly exclaimed. She placed a finger near the frog, and in a flash of whitish-blue light, the frog was encased in a block of ice, and then she went into the castle.
Both the guards were surprised to see this, especially the frog's owner. That guard fell to his knees and picked up the frozen frog and started crying. "WART! WHAT HAS SHE DONE TO YOU! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAART!"
BGM: Peach's Castle (Super Mario 64)
The inhabitants of Gensokyo looked with awe at the beautiful interior of the castle. It was without doubt one of the grandest sight that have ever seen.
"Wow! This place is beautiful!" Sanae exclaimed.
"It's even nicer looking than Scarlet Devil Mansion!" Marisa commented.
"I admit," Remilia said, "it does look grander than my mansion."
"Come on in!" Peach said to them. "If you feel like eating anything, then let us go to the dining room and have a meal!"
The princess led down through the corridors and the servants Toads were all standing at both sides, bowing down to pay respect to Peach and the guests. "Heh! Makes me feel that I'm an important guest!" Marisa thought happily.
As they went down the corridor, they had the chance to glance at the paintings on the walls that depicted famous figures in the history of Mushroom Kingdom (including Mario himself but not Luigi) as well as the garden which was visible through the window.
Peach eventually led them to the dining room that consisted of a large rectangular table with several chairs set at the side, and the butlers and maids were all in their positions ready to serve the guests. "Have a seat!" Peach said to them. "I'm sure you will enjoy your meal!"
"Hooray!" Cirno said happily. She immediately rushed on ahead and took a seat for herself.
"Hey! Don't act like this is your own house!" Reimu said to her. "Sorry, princess… She tends to be very immature."
"Oh, that's not a problem!" Peach told her. "Little kids like her tend to be energetic. It's nice to see someone cheerful like her!"
Soon afterwards, the inhabitants of Gensokyo were enjoying their meal and were almost done with it. "This is the most delicious meal I've ever had!" Marisa said in between mouthfuls.
"I'm sure Mistress Yuyuko would like these!" Youmu said. "But then… Maybe it's a good thing that she's not here…" She visualized the thought of her mistress inhaling everything into her mouth like a vacuum cleaner.
Reisen picked up a mushroom with her fork and stared at it for a while, and then spoke to a chef who was standing at the side. "Excuse me, but does your kind also eat mushrooms?"
"Of course," the chef replied. "They're the greatest delicacies you can find around these places! Why do you ask?"
"Um… Nothing…" Reisen resumed with her meal, but thought of something in her head. "Mushrooms eating mushrooms…? I can't imagine this…"
"I don't believe I've gotten to know your names yet," Peach asked, trying to start a conversation. "This would be a perfect opportunity for us to get to know each other."
Reimu wiped her mouth with a napkin and said, "Yeah, we haven't yet. Anyway, I'm Reimu Hakurei, and I'm the shrine maiden of the shrine that showed up in your world all of a sudden."
Marisa raised an arm and said cheerfully, "I'm Marisa Kirisame, and I'm just an ordinary witch-ze!"
"Remilia Scarlet," Remilia said while drinking from her glass of water. "And I'm a vampire, enough said." Pointing to Meiling who was sitting next to her, "And she's the gatekeeper of the mansion that I live in."
Meiling stood up and bowed down saying, "Nice to meet you! I'm Hong Meiling at your service! And if my name is too hard for you to memorize, just call me China!"
"Nice nickname!" Peach commented, and then she looked at Remilia. "You're a vampire?"
"What? Never seen one before?" Remilia asked her.
"Um… Yeah… I've heard rumors of them existing… But then, the world is such a large one, so you'll never know."
Youmu then stood up next and introduced herself, "I'm Youmu Konpaku. Nice to meet you!"
"Nice to meet you too!" Peach said. "And what's that white thing flying around next to you?"
Youmu looked at her phantom half and said, "This is my phantom. You see, I'm half-human half-phantom, so I exist in two different forms, but despite this, we both act as one person and share together what we experience."
Hearing this, Peach became curious and somewhat confused. "Half-human half-phantom?"
"Her species is one of the mysteries of our world," Reimu told her. "So don't question about it too much."
Cirno stood up on her chair and said out loud, "I'm Cirno the ice fairy, and I'm the strongest from our world!"
"Yeah right…" Marisa said under her breath.
"I'm Reisen Udongein Inaba," Reisen said next. "Just call me Reisen!"
"Nice rabbits ears!" Peach commented.
"These are my ears."
"Yes, I'm a lunar rabbit."
"Oh my! I didn't know there are rabbits living on the moon too!"
"I am Alice Margatroid," Alice simply said. "I'm a magician and my hobby is making dolls. And this is Shanghai, a doll that I made and animated using magic." The little doll lowered her head to give Peach a greeting.
"It's so cute!" Peach said with a slight giggle. "So you work as a magician and doll maker?"
"No, I'm only a doll maker," Alice explained. "Magician refers to a race of demons specializing in magic."
"Oh… So you're not human?" Peach asked, and Alice nodded in response.
Sanae was the next to introduce herself, "I'm Sanae Kochiya! It's a pleasure to be… invited by a royalty like you!"
"I'm Aya Shameimaru, the tengu news reporter!" Aya said cheerfully. Holding up her camera, she asked Peach, "Mind if I take more pictures of you? It's rare opportunity to meet royalties like you!"
"I'd love to!" Peach said. "Maybe I should make-up a bit more?"
"Ignore her…" Reimu told her. "You don't want to know what she might do with those pictures afterwards…"
Lastly, Nitori introduced herself. "I'm Nitori Kawashiro, a kappa! And by the way, the cucumber dishes are really delicious!"
"I'm glad you like it! They're made by our best chefs and also imported from Beanbean Kingdom. Their vegetables, especially beans, are one of the highest qualities in the world!"
"So…" Peach then asked, "What brings you here to Mushroom Kingdom?"
Reimu answered, "Like we said earlier, we have no idea at all. We were in the shrine chatting when suddenly a beam of light came down and transported us to this place. And by the way, have you heard of the place called Gensokyo?"
Peach shook her head. "I'm afraid that I've never heard such a term."
"I figured as much…"
"Looks like we're really not in Gensokyo anymore," Aya told Reimu. "But that doesn't sound so bad if you think of it. We get the rare opportunity to tour around other places!"
"And what if we cannot go back to our world?" Reimu reminded her.
"I'm sorry for the problems that you've encounter, but I'm afraid I'm not help myself either," Peach said. "But perhaps there is…"
"Hey! If you're a princess," Cirno interrupted. "Then you must get kidnapped by evil warlocks often, right? That happens in fairy tale books often!"
"It's not nice to interrupt," Nitori told her.
"That's all right," Peach said. "But it's true though. I do get kidnapped constantly by a villain named Bowser who lives in an area not too far from here. But luckily, our national hero Mario is always ready to rescue me when that happens!"
"He must be your prince on a white horse," Marisa said. "Ooooh, how romantic!" She imagined Mario to look like a typical handsome prince riding on a majestic white horse.
"You can say that, heehee! He's really a great person! I can't imagine how our kingdom will be like without him! There is peace all around here thanks to his heroic efforts! Now getting back to the previous topic… I was saying that there might be someone who can help you on this matter."
"Who?" Reimu asked.
"Merlon the wizard," Peach replied. "He's one of the wisest people around here and knows pretty much everything that is happening. I'm sure he will be able to explain some things to you."
TO BE CONTINUED
I think this is quite a bit for the first chapter. I'm really excited about this story that I started it before my planned break was over, which lasts at least up to February. But it's not bad start this story early either, right?
Yes, this arc so far is following the same formula as One Piece: A Smash Adventure, but believe me when I say that it will also be quite different at the same time. I hope you have the patience to stay around until new elements show up!
Next chapter: Words of the Wizard
1. The frog named Wart is an obvious reference to Wart from the American version of Super Mario Bros. 2.
2. There was a debate among fans on whether Meiling should be called by her Chinese name or her Japanese name, Kurenai Misuzu, and one user from the website 2ch suggested that she be called China, and that nickname became popular. ZUN confirmed in an interview that "Hong Meiling" is the correct pronunciation, but the nickname "China" still remains popular.
3. In some official material, Alice's dolls appear to be able to act and talk independently, but according to her in the information book Perfect Memento, she has yet succeeded in creating an independent doll, and was suggested that Alice just controls the dolls and pretends they are alive for her own amusement and for showing off.