Chapter 7: Introductions

The three of us slowly walked out of the Toad House in a fairly good mood. Taylor was mostly healed and well enough to leave his bed. He was able to stand up just fine, but when it came to walking he had a slight limp. This led to me becoming a living cane on his left side while Belle was holding Taylor's hand and staying on his right. I led us through town and back towards the entrance before they both began to gain confused expressions on their faces.

"Where are we going Luigi? How is there food for us all outside of Toad Town?" Belle spoke up after her brother and said, "Yeah that doesn't seem right. Are we going the right way still?" Taylor stopped walking which forced Belle and me to come to a stop as well.

I sheepishly answered with a, "Yep. We're definitely going the right way. My house isn't far from here. In fact we're almost in front of the entrance." Their confused expressions didn't waver from my explanation. Taylor spoke up again and said, "How are we close to it when the house over there is a makeshift library that only one guy lives in?"

"We need to walk to the cluster of bushes over there so we can get to my house. You'll see what I mean in a minute." They both didn't seem to accept my unclear answer, and I couldn't blame them for it. I doubt that many people have their houses in such a remote area like mine is. Nevertheless, we eventually stopped in front of the mass of plants that covered the warp pipe.

I told Belle and Taylor to go in first once I looked around and didn't see anyone in the area. Then I slipped inside the cluster of bushes and met them in the center. "Do you see what I mean now? This pipe leads to my home. We had it hidden from view so that Bowser and his minions wouldn't be able to find out where we live. The bushes grew tall enough where they cover the entrance from above, which is very helpful. Although, because of that we have to trim the branches around the pipe in order to keep it clear enough to travel to and from freely."

They absently nodded their heads before Belle gained an excited look on her face. She giggled and said, "So you live in a secret base then? That's so cool! It's kind of like the game club pipe!" She immediately hopped on top of the pipe after speaking and dropped inside. Taylor was quiet for a moment, shrugged, and jumped onto the pipe. "I'm going to make sure she doesn't wander off then." He gave a short sigh before dropping into the warp pipe as well.

I followed the toads through the pipe and popped out shortly after. What greeted my sight was Belle marveling over the property. She was racing around the lawn in her haste to explore the yard. Meanwhile Taylor was watching her from the porch with a look of amusement. "Is she usually this excited when going to new places?"

Taylor smirked at that. "Yeah she's always been like this. It's a good thing that your yard is enclosed. Especially since I have a bad leg right now. I don't have to worry about her running off too far." I agreed with him and called out for Belle to come to the porch. She sprinted her way back towards us, and began bouncing in place in her excitement to see the house from the inside.

As I walked through the front door I noticed that Toadsworth was cleaning some dishes at the kitchen sink. He turned around to greet me and I saw his eyes widen a bit in surprise. "You're back sooner than I thought, and I see we have some guests." I nodded and replied saying, "Yup. These are the two toads that I found on the trail to Goompa's house. They haven't had any contact with their dad since the mass kidnapping."

Belle chose that moment to speak up. "We were hoping that the Goomba family could spare us some Goomnuts. We didn't get too far though…" Toadsworth's body tensed up at her statement. Taylor continued saying, "Luckily Luigi saved us from King Goomba's thugs earlier. I don't know what would have happened if Belle got hurt because of me."

Toadsworth let out a loud sigh as he shook his head. "It seems as though I've failed to put the proper policies into place after the latest disaster. I was too focused on getting information, and didn't think about the needs of Toad Town's citizens. There are usually other aides to remind me of my duties, but that's no excuse for my recent behavior." He began to pace as he continued saying, "I should have started, at the very least, to put that into motion…" One moment he was pacing, and in the next Toadsworth suddenly ran out of the front door without a word of where he intended to go.

In the sudden silence I decided to address the two toads. "Well there goes Toadsworth. He's an aid and the top caretaker of Princess Toadstool. It looks like he has important work to do, so I'll just start preparing an early supper for all of us. The two siblings nodded happily at my decision and promptly sat down at the kitchen table to watch as I made them their first meal of the day. I set out a small bowl of washed purple grapes for them to snack on, as well as two glasses of water, before starting on my task.