*peeks out from the side nervously to see who's still here* Uh…hi?

But seriously, I have no words, you guys. I am totally ashamed at how time got away from me.

Please enjoy this chap!

A grinning Lightning stood on the windowsill of the room that the small group was occupying. "Okay, guys, on the count of three," she murmured.

"Lightning, this is a bit unorthodox…" mumbled Turbo, rocking back and forth in a fetal position.

"Nah, man, Felix told me to, and he has a plan, that means it's gotta be okay!"

"Felix and Ralph's suggestions are never okay! They always end up with someone getting hurt," growled the red-and-white clad racer. The dynamic duo in question responded by glaring at him. "…Fine, with me getting hurt. But still!" he whined.

"Stop being a baby," snapped Calhoun. "Lightning, proceed."

"Okay. Phew. C'mon, girl. Be your awesome self. Your freaking awesome self," whispered Lightning, steeling her courage. She stood tall. "Alright, everyone, speak now or forever hold your peace…one…two…"

"Good luck, Lightning!" everyone called.

"THREE!" cried the vampire, flashing a smile at her friends before stretching out her arms and diving into the mess of Cybugs and zombies. As she fell, she called in a fading voice, "Remember to let me drink the heart guy's bloooooood…!" To any ordinary bystander, she was a goner, but being a vampire she couldn't actually be "killed" by the monsters, per se. She continued to "regenerate" as one would say, and the bugs kept trying and trying to eat her to no avail.

"Eeww…" whimpered Ralph. Vanellope patted his shoulder from her spot on his head.

"Okay. Distraction, check. Let's get down there," said Felix, lowering a licorice rope out of the window. They climbed down. When they arrived at the doors, Ralph took the liberty of smashing them down. The fivesome stormed the castle.

"Okay, you remember the plan. Calhoun and Turbo will search for Ricardio," explained Felix, "while Ralph, Vanny, and myself will look for the antidote for the zombies."

"Okay, here we go," laughed Turbo nervously. Calhoun replied by very roughly patting him on the back.

"You'll be fine, soldier. We're both gonna have to be careful around Ricardio, he's a tough nugget. But so help me, I will NOT let him get away with this and you had better be with me on that. He threatened my babies. NOBODY does that and gets away with it alive," hissed the tall woman. She walked over to Felix, grabbed him by the collar, gave him a rough kiss and a warning to return safely or else, and stomped towards the nearest room, Turbo in tow.

"Ah…my dynamite gal…" sighed Felix, lovestruck. It took a slap from Vanellope to get him out of his funk. "Thanks…I think."

"Ever so welcome! Let's go!"

Turbo and Calhoun tromped through the castle in search of the creepy yet oddly charismatic heart guy. "That little failed excuse for a Valentine's gift had better be prepared," hissed the tall woman as she strode through the dark (with her long legs, Turbo had to jog to keep up). "Because I'll kill him before I let him hurt my babies."

"Yeah," agreed Turbo. "And I'm a way better racer than him!"

"…Sure…Say, what was with you and Lightning just now?"

"…Oh, that…? Well…" Turbo launched into a detailed explanation of his friendship with Lightning, Calhoun nodding her head and making a comment occasionally as she listened.

"I see…so you have feelings for her?"

Turbo folded his arms, raising an eyebrow. "Okay, how did you get that from my story?"

"I can just tell, Ice King." Calhoun fell silent, listening for any monsters. Hearing none, she motioned for Turbo to come along. He opened his mouth but she shushed him, shaking her head frantically.

Turbo huffed angrily, following her with a slouch to his step as he continually reminded himself to bring the topic up later.

And this cycle continued for the next few minutes, Turbo wanting to speak and Calhoun shushing him as she snuck through the castle. All Turbo did was stuff his hands in his pockets and wait for the soldier to move so he could follow her. The Ice King was getting quite bored.

Eventually he couldn't take it anymore. "Dude, what did you mean by saying you could tell?!" shouted Turbo, his voice echoing throughout the entire castle.

Calhoun whipped around, livid as she slapped the gray-faced racer. "Do you even realize the gravity of what you just did?!"

"Oh, I don't know if he did, Madame," a different voice chuckled, "but I certainly do." Calhoun turned on the spot, and her face turned pale as she faced the familiar red heart that had once so easily thrown her aside. Being even more heavily pregnant than that time, she was much weaker and more protective. "Hello, again, Turbo."

"Ricardio," spat the Ice King angrily. "We meet again. Don't try anything, we're armed!"

"As am I." With a click of the heart-creature's red fingers, a mass of Cybugs swarmed around them. A chill ran down Turbo's spine as he noticed Lightning in the clutches of one. She noticed him also.

"Oh…uh, hey, Turbo," she laughed sheepishly. "Yeah, um…so, apparently, Cybugs are all armored and stuff, and I couldn't exactly bite my way out of this one…so even though I didn't die, they kind of caught me…guess I wasn't that good of a distraction, huh?"

Both Turbo and Calhoun facepalmed.

Ralph guarded the doorway of the room while Felix, Vanellope, and Science the Rat frantically attempted to come up with enough bottles of the the antidote in time. "You guys, hurry up already!" snapped the wrecker.

"I'm really close!" called Vanellope. Her pink tongue just barely protruded from her teeth as she poured one more liquid into her final beaker, and then it glowed yellow. "Success!" she exclaimed. Science, on the other hand, had already made eighteen beakers, beaming cheekily.

After a few minutes Felix's beakers were finished as well. "Okay, Ralph, we're ready! Let's do this!" Vanellope hopped down from her stool, her arms laden with bottles of antidote, as Ralph threw open the graham cracker door. Some zombies were already awaiting them. "You guys need some medicine or something…um, because you look like you've got a skin disease, and…oh, whatever!" sighed Felix. He popped the top of a bottle and sloshed the liquid over the zombies. They turned right back into candy people, who cheered. Felix's face was red. "Pretend that I never said that failure of a catchprase?" His companions nodded.

And so it was that these three, with the addition of Science, stormed the castle, curing the candy people and bringing them along to keep them from harm. They had amassed quite an army. Vanellope even kept track of who still needed to be cured, having a photographic memory of each of her beloved citizens. The list dwindled, and dwindled, and eventually…

"Omigosh, you guys! Everyone's cured!"

Ralph raised an eyebrow. "How can you be so sure?"

"Trust me on this. Look at everyone and tell me who isn't here."

"Easy. There's um…no wait, I see him over there, um…oh! Well, how about…no…uh…well…" Ralph shrugged. "I guess I'll take your word for it."

Vanellope nodded with a grin. "Good man!" Then she turned to the candy people. "So, you guys were zombies, huh? I'll bet that wasn't very fun, huh?"

Nods and murmurs of assent rippled through the crowd.

"Betcha want to beat up the guy responsible for this, huh?"

The murmuring became louder and angrier.

"Because I'm gonna need some help in getting rid of that dude who turned ya'll into zombies!"

The crowd, now very riled up and ready to kick some butt, raised their fists in anger against Ricardio.

Vanellope gave them a thumbs up. "Great! Now, he's got Cybugs with him , and they are some pretty tough customers. So don't let them get too close to you or they'll eat you. But other than that, you're golden!"

Quite a few candy people ran off but many remained, and followed their princess in anticipation for the upcoming battle.

Again, I am SO sorry it was so long. I am a terrible person *hangs head*

But I hope your lives have been good since the last update! Yep! Mine's been good. 'S been good.

So, yeah. Feel free to rage at how long I made you wait in the reviews; I don't usually like flamers but I guess I deserve it. Just, don't be really jerky about it. Kay?

God bless ya'll!