COUNTDOWN

Chapter 1: Coleen's Morning

10 Years Later…

The sun rose from the horizon, spreading its light on the world below, rising ever higher almost like that movie… L… Lio… whatever humans called it long ago. As the sun rose, a wall of light descended upon the buildings of Flounder Heights. The birds were singing, the leaves were blowing, and they sky's orange tint could be seen from everywhere.

In one apartment, an annoying beeping sound could be heard; every half second it would beep, beggin to be stopped at once. A groan was heard, followed by a hand reaching for the source of the sound: an alarm clock. The hand presses the snooze button, yet it wasn't turning off. The hand suddenly banged the button instead, and that did the trick.

The hand's owner, a now teenage Coleen Coral, lazily opened her eyes, glaring at the clock. Her skin was now as fair as her uncle's, as she turned fourteen a year ago. Her hair was the same as before, she was now only 4.5 feet tall, and her body had already faced puberty of course.

"Stupid thing," she commented grumpily. "One of these days you're going to the trash yard."

She slowly sat up on her bed, rubbing her masked eyes before looking around her room. The grey walls were lined with posters, a computer on a desk with her Turf War weapon of choice, a Splattershot, lying against it. Of course there were drawers for clothing, but there were other items such as books, gear, and other things she liked.

Coleen pushed the blanket off her, slowly got out of bed, and did some stretches; it was almost a routine to stretch in the morning. Once she was done, she went to her calendar to check what's happening today. It caught her eye quickly.

She grinned. "Hey, Splatfest is tonight! I almost forgot about it!"

This week's Splatfest theme was Light Colors VS. Dark Colors, and would run from nine in the evening to midnight. Coleen and her friends always participated in Splatfest since they turned fourteen, and she wasn't going to miss out on it now.

As she looked at the calendar again, she noticed that she has an Advanced Turf War game to go to before that. An Advanced Turf War is sort of like a team-based tournament for Turf Wars. She realized how important the game was as well, for she and her team have one last chance at the semi-finals. She sighed; she wasn't going to like this particular game because the other team has her long-time rival with them.

That girl was, and still is, a bully to her and her friends, and in Turf Wars, she always seemed to beat her in battle every single time they meet. Coleen didn't like her at all, and neither did she like her two companions that follow her around. Did I mention they were on her team as well?

"Well…" she groaned, "this is gonna be another one of those days, isn't it?"

Just after she said that, the clock began beeping again—much to her sheer annoyance. She clenched her teeth, trembling, and her orange hair turning slightly red before grabbing the clock, shaking it angrily trying to shut it up.

"Aargh! Will I ever have a normal, uneventful day for once!?"


Kevin, Coleen's uncle, was by the stove in the kitchen area making breakfast; pancakes to be exact. He is sort of like a father figure to Coleen, ever since her parents left this world. He loved her just as much as a parent should. He is thirty-five years old, and 5.8' in height, still having his hairstyle and beard. He is wearing a Red Check Shirt, and Black Seahorses (shoes).

"And to think," he said to himself, smiling and flipping a pancake, "she'll be turning sixteen this week."

He checked his own calendar, noting the Turf War, the Splatfest…and the date. He remembered that day when the news on the TV broke out: the Great Zapfish incident.

It has been twenty years since the Great Zapfish incident, and twenty years since danger had come to Inkopolis. It was at that time the Inklings were worried of the loss of power, possibly endangering their race. In that same time, the New Squidbeak Splatoon led by Cap'n Cuttlefish, apprehended the villainous DJ Octavio who was behind it all, and peace returned thanks to him, and his three agents.

Now… those agents are no longer needed, for there has been a peace treaty between Inklings and Octarians, reducing the need to guard the entry to Octo Valley to nearly zero. And so, the Splatoon disbanded, and went along with their normal lives, except for Cuttlefish who remains at the guard post, never to be agents again.

Kevin shook the thought out of his mind.

"Why am I still thinking about that," he wondered; "it was twenty years ago, and I should focus on today."

Now continuing his task for the morning, he used a flipper/spatula to take the pancakes off the hot pan, placing them on a plate for him and his niece. He turned off the stove, put his flipper away, and placed the plate full of pancakes on the table, with syrup of course.

"Coleen," he called, "breakfast is ready!"

There was a pause, but soon enough there was a response.

"Be right there! I just...nrf…gotta get dressed!"

Kevin raised an eyebrow.

"You haven't even gotten dressed yet?" he asked, then sternly held a hand on his forehead. "You have an Advanced Turf War game today!"

"I know, I know! I'm almost done."

Coleen finally came out of her room, wearing a White Striped LS shirt, a Squid Hairclip on her head, and Purple Sea Slugs (shoes). She pretty much dashed to the table quickly taking a couple pancakes and putting them on her plate.

Kevin noticed this and chuckled.

"Slow down, Coleen; there's still time before the game."

Coleen smirked at her uncle, just before pouring syrup on her breakfast.

"Come on, Uncle; I'm the quickest of the team so I need to practice!"

Kevin shook his head, amused. He really loved Coleen's optimistic view on various things; a view he has trouble seeing. He sat down in his own chair, putting some of his own pancakes down.

The two sat in silence, simply eating their food and nothing else. It's peaceful, yet Kevin knew that when Coleen was silent for a long time, she probably wasn't as happy as she usually is. He figured it must have something to do with the game's opposing team.

He broke the silence.

"So, how are you feeling about the upcoming Turf War?"

Coleen stopped eating, frowning a bit in thought, looking at the floor.

"I'm… just not that excited for it. If I had a choice I'd sit this one out."

Kevin gave her a reassuring look.

"There's nothing to be worried about, Coleen; you just need to do your best, and even if you don't win you can still leave knowing you had some fun out there."

Coleen sighed.

"True…unless it happens to be her on the other team."

He knew it.

"Coleen, lighten up a bit; maybe if you do that you can blind her?"

Coleen giggled at the joke; her uncle always knew how to make her feel better. She grinned at him.

"Okay, I'll do my best. And I'll think positive!"

Kevin ruffled her hair.

"That's my girl."

By now the two had finished eating breakfast, and it was almost time to leave for Inkopolis Plaza. Coleen was currently in the bathroom, brushing her teeth. As she did, she looked back at her and her rival's Turf War history.

She usually had trouble against her, being a primary target for her. Most of the time, she would find herself getting splatted if she wasn't paying attention to her surroundings. Recently she had gained more skill in battle, and would always get closer and closer to beating her.

"I wonder," she thought to herself, "could this be the day I finally do it?"

Rinsing out her mouth, she somehow doubted her thought to be the case; it was going to be another one of those days, isn't it? She shook her head; she didn't have time for self-questions.

"Coleen! It's time to go!"

She acknowledged her uncle's call, heading back to her room to get her Splattershot and ink tank, putting them in her backpack before slipping it on her back, and following her uncle out the door of the apartment.


Leaving the building, Kevin and Coleen stopped walking for a moment; Kevin had forgotten something and had to go back inside, leaving Coleen to wait for him.

The outside of Flounder Heights wasn't too fancy, like Inkopolis or Moray Towers, but it was still home to Coleen.

SPLAT

Feeling an ink balloon burst on her head, surprising her, she remembered someone else who had Flounder Heights as her home.

"Well, look who it is, guys," a voice to the left of her called out, "Like, It's Miss Fast-a-lot!"

Coleen glared at the girl, knowing all too well who she is: it was Wendy Whitefin, her rival.

Wendy is seventeen years old, with emerald green hair in a chignon style, pale white skin, yellow eyes, and 5.1' in height. She wore Moto Boots, a Black Inky Rider, and Fake Contacts which help her see. She uses a Slosher as her main weapon.

Her two companions, Marr and Lynn Kelpler, were right behind her. They are twin brother and sister, at the age of fifteen, with scarlet hair, beige skin, and both of them are the same height: 5.0', wear the same gear: A Skate Helmet, Black Anchor Tees, and Pro Trail Boots. However, they use different weapons; Marr uses a Splattershot Pro, and Lynn uses an Inkbrush Nouveau.

"Look," Coleen started, crossing her arms, "I don't have time for this. Can't we wait until the Turf War before we start getting inked?"

Wendy pretended to think for a moment before smirking slyly.

"Nah; this is, like, way more fun messing with ya."

Marr pointed a finger at Coleen, taunting her.

"Coleen Coral, the girl with the speed-"

"-but can't see a balloon coming from a mile away," Lynn finished.

The trio started laughing. Of course, it hurt Coleen's feelings, but she had grown used to it.

She thought of a comeback.

"Huh, that's odd," she began, smirking; "now I can't tell if the two of you are either related, or cloned by the Octo Lord himself!"

"Wha-!?" They said in unison.

Wendy took out another ink balloon.

"Oh, now you're gonna get it, shrimp!"

Coleen braced herself for the throw Wendy was winding up, but just before she did, she stopped abruptly, going from angry to nervous, as did Marr and Lynn.

Coleen turned around, and there was her uncle, frowning at the three.

He talked in a threatening voice. "Are you three picking on my niece again?"

The three in question couldn't say anything. After all, who can question a former veteran Turf War player, also known as the coach of Coleen's team? All they could do was stare at him hoping he wouldn't kill them. Wendy dropped the balloon on the ground before grinning sheepishly.

"Uh…hehe…Hiya, Coach Coral. Lovely morning, right?"

Kevin frowned deeper. "It would be even better if you three leave my sight before I teach you how to be more flexible!"

The three gasped, running off and even using ink and their squid forms to go faster. Once they were gone, Kevin dropped his tough personality and looked at Coleen with concern.

Coleen smiled, while having a questioning brow. "Thanks; but I think you are overdoing it lately."

Kevin smiled back.

"Well, like I always say to myself: nobody makes fun of my niece."

With no further delays, the two got in their car, and drove on their way to Inkopolis Plaza. Normally a train ride was Coleen's way of getting there, but that was only for when she went there by herself. Though, it was nice to get away from the loudness and squishiness of the train cars, and have a little drive with friends and family only.

It took a while, but they made it to Inkopolis ahead of time. It was now 9:00 AM, and the game would start in half an hour. Finding their way through the crowd of inklings, they found their way to the plaza, and there were already signs of preparations for Splatfest.

"Hey, Coleen, Coach!"

The two looked in the direction of the voice, finding two male inklings near the tower; the Great Zapfish gazing from above. Coleen knew exactly who they were, and ran up to them with Kevin following slowly behind.

"Jay! Gideon!"

Jay Mollusk and Gideon Tenakuul are Coleen's two best friends, having known them since the first years of school.

Jay is an intelligent sixteen year old teen, known to be logical, reasonable, and even funny. He is 5.2' tall, with cyan hair in a curtained style, and has brown eyes, along with a medium skin tone, and wears Retro Specs glasses, a Blue Peaks Tee, and some Blue Lo-Tops. He uses a Splatterscope as a weapon, as he is more defensive when it comes to Turf War.

Gideon, or "Gidds" as Jay likes to call him, is also sixteen. He is a great fighter in the Turf Wars, reaching high ranks faster than others; however he has a case of…what was it called again? Aspergars? Autiseem? Some sort of syndrome which means he has trouble with certain things. He is 5.0' tall, with magenta hair with the good old scrunchie style, with green eyes, and a black skin tone. He wears a Camo Mesh Cap, a Camo Zip Hoodie, and some Tan Work Boots. His main weapon is the Roller, doing damage wherever he goes.

"Hey there," Jay greeted, "It's good to see that ya made it."

Coleen smiled.

"Well you wouldn't be able to compete without me anyway."

Gideon began scratching his head in thought. He turned to Jay.

"Dude, wouldn't Squad Battle work?"

Jay shook his head, and tried to explain to him why it does not in fact work.

Seeing as the three are now together, Kevin told them he will be waiting in the Advanced Turf War Lobby when it's time. He warned them not to get in any trouble.

"I'm telling you, dude, if I can prove to them it can happen-!"

"Gidds, don't be reckless; nothing will change their minds."

Gideon crossed his arms, and huffed in disappointment. That's when he noticed a bit of ink in Coleen's hair.

"Hey, what's with the gunk," he asked, pointing to the ink smudge. Coleen seemed to notice it.

"Oh, that? It's nothing."

Jay raised a brow. He had known her for a long time and can tell when she's lying.

"What happened, Coleen," he asked, "I'm asking you as a friend."

Coleen sighed in defeat. There was no hiding from her friends, was there?

"Okay. I had a little run-in with Wendy and the Marr-Lynn duo."

"Ah, Bloop," Gideon commented in disgust and despise. "I wouldn't wanna be in your shoes; but if I were, I would've wanted to give Wendy a kick in the ass!"

"Gideon," Jay scolded. For one reason, he wasn't one who tolerated language. The other reason is that he doesn't want Gideon to get into a bad situation with an attitude like that, so he often looks out for him.

Gideon held up a hand, trying to reason with Jay.

"Chillax, dude. I didn't say it in front of anyone mean."

"When I said that I meant-… oh, never mind."

Coleen decided to end the little conversation the two were having.

"Guys, let's forget about this bickering and stay positive, okay?"

The two boys nodded in agreement, putting the topic aside for now. That's when they heard a familiar tune coming from the plaza television. Everyone looked up to see, and surely enough, it was the Squid Sisters doing their morning news.


"Hold onto your tentacles…" Callie began.

"…It's Inkopolis News time!" Marie finished.

Callie and Marie stood in their studio in front of a camera, with a TV behind them, greeting the audience from outside the window. The two have been doing news reports, music shows, and Splatfests for a long time, and are popular all across the world. Their reports usually talked about new items in the stores, new areas to battle on, and events that are to happen soon. This one so happens to be about Splatfest.

"I hope you are all exited," Callie said, raising a fist in the air happily, "because the latest Splatfest is happening tonight!"

"Splatastic!"

Marie turned to face the other Squid Sister.

"Remind us again which side you prefer?"

Callie smiled. "Light Colors, of course! They make everyone happy! What about you, Marie?"

"Dark Colors; they are so gentle, and easier to look at."

The Sisters turned back to the camera.

"You know what this means, everyone?"

Marie pretended to gasp. "What is it?"

"This is your last chance to enter! Sign up now before dark nighttime makes light day disappear!"

Marie was silent. She didn't think that joke was too funny. A countdown appeared on the screen, showing how much time was left until the party gets started.

"That's all for now."

The Squid Sisters then did their iconic pose.

"Staaaay Fresh," they shouted in unison, and the screen went back to normal, except for the countdown.


Gideon was practically shaking in excitement. "I can't wait! Somebody stop me from shaking!"

Jay was just going to do that, but he stopped. He remembered that Gideon didn't like being touched by other people, even if it was his friends. He then remembered something.

"Wait a minute, isn't your birthday this week, Coleen?"

Coleen has a big smile on her face. "You remembered!"

Jay smirked. "If I was that stupid, I might as well have amnesia."

Coleen giggled. She couldn't help but laugh at Jay's humor, even if Gideon didn't get most of it.

"What?"

Speak of the devil.

"Oh, it's a joke, Gidds. Anyway, five days is too long a wait for a birthday, huh?"

"Darn right. I can't stand waiting!"

Coleen and Jay heard Gideon yelp is surprise for some reason. They turned to see him with his eyes wide, staring at the time on his SquidPhone.

"It's 9:20! We're gonna be late for the Advanced Turf War!"

"Then let's not waste time, Gidds. We head to the lobby, now!"

With that the three inklings heading inside the Inkopolis Tower, where Kevin and their fourth team member are sure to be waiting for them.

So far the day wasn't turning out as bad as Coleen thought it was. She felt like nothing else was going to go wrong today. At least, that's what she figured. She doesn't know why, but she feels something strange, as if there was something, or someone watching her. She paid no mind to it, and put her focus on the goal that lay ahead: winning this Turf War.


A/N: Finally an actual chapter. This is the first time I ever made a story with mostly OC's, and I'm hoping that I'm doing an okay job.

Don't forget to review, and please leave critique if you can so I can improve my writing. See you next time!