Total Drama Outrage

Chapter 19: Don't Forget to Brig Your Lunch

The Brig: New Production Room

The gradual flooding of the Brig had forced some location changes on the crew, namely because the former production area was completely submerged in salt water and conducting interviews in scuba gear would be an exercise in pointlessness. So, in light of this the production room had been moved up as high as they could get without being on the top deck which had previously been were a large number of cabins had been located. Individual cabins weren't much use for a production room and so the dividing walls had been knocked apart until you had several cabins joined together with stray furniture and various contestants scattered all around the area. Izzy had managed to rescue her armchair along with the Couch of Doom and was sitting in it now but other contestants were just using beds, dining chairs and kitchen benches for seating because the grandstand was lost to the deeps. In all, the whole place looked more like an extremely large family's chaotic living room than the set of the show but that's where Izzy was going to be filming today as the cameras zoomed into to focus solely on her as opposed to the room at large.

"Hey there viewers! Before we get started with the best show in the world, I just want to tell you about some really weird stuff that's been going on here," started Izzy. "See, the filming schedule says they're supposed to be filming an episode back at Camp Wawanakwa today but for some reason I've been instructed to keep the cameras rolling here as well. Someone has really been mucking around with the schedule and it totally wasn't me because I was banned from the production room for life after I tried to replace Total Drama Outrage with my own series The Adventures of The SS Izzy. Not that being banned would stop me; I'm just not going there because everyone in there is extremely rude if you know what I mean. Aaaaannnnnyway we sort of don't have any side area for the eliminated contestants who haven't been eliminated to wait today due to some flooding so we've got Lauren, Everett, Wolf, Stacey and Marshall_"

"Some flooding?" asked Sandra incredulously from where she was seated, "I've calculated the rate at which water is flowing in compared to the amount leaving and put the number against the total capacity this ship can take before sinking and we've only got a few hours left at most! Use your magic producer phone to call someone to get us out of here!"

"Relax Sandra, I have foreseen that none of us while drown today," Alice assured her, "there is nothing to be afraid of."

"Even if I did believe in your hokey predictions that'd just mean we'd survive the sinking only to get torn apart by sharks instead," snapped Sandra, "and I mean the real variety, not Larry's cybernetic freak show."

"I take offence to my work being referred to as a cybernetic freak show," insisted Larry, "it's all just perfectly normal robotic engineering, no one gets on Maria's back about her robots."

"Robot, I only made one," pointed out Maria, "which was a humanoid figure and didn't go about trying to kill people, no matter what Everett tries to tell you," she finished with a sharp look at the dishevelled looking boy who gave no response other than a random twitch of his facial muscles.

"She only really needs one," Billy explained wisely, "once she's finished here she's going to make sure it looks just like her so she can send that to school instead. It's a perfect plan; I've already put in an order for one myself."

"So that's why I found that random note in my room about someone wanting a robot," said Chance, "I was wondering who wrote that. Why would you ask me to get you a robot? It's Larry and Maria who build the things, not me."

"It's because you're a gambler and that's the closest thing we have to a smuggler here," explained Isaac, "I've already put in several orders for good anti zombie weapons in case this turns into the cruise ship from hell."

"I'm quite certain that this is already the cruise ship from hell," announced Cynthia stiffly, "my treatment on board this ship has been absolute horrendous and I shall be glad to see the back of it."

"Such trials exist to make us stronger," intoned Donovan, "you should not be so eager to see them over when it appears you have so much more to learn."

"Geez, now I know how Chris feels when contestants go on random tangents in the middle of when he's trying to explain something," said Izzy, "you guys are pretty chatty today, it must be my vivacious personality drawing all of you out. Anyway, as I was saying, I have our freshly eliminated contestants, with the exception of Wolf's aunt and uncle_"

"They weren't contestants," pointed out Sandra, "so I don't know why you bothered mentioning them."

"They were on the island and then they left," said Izzy stubbornly, "therefore they count as contestants. They didn't want to appear on my show though; I think they're hiding up on the top deck, trying to signal for passing ships and airplanes to save them. Pretty silly, since the SS Izzy is perfectly safe already. The eliminated contestants are all sitting together on our newly extended Couch of Doom and I'm just going to sort of try and interview all of them at the same time by just throwing random questions at them. Isn't that a great idea? What do you think Lauren?"

"I think it's a lovely idea," said Lauren, "sitting on the couch and alone and getting grilled can be very disconcerting but with all five of us hear at the same time it shouldn't be nearly as bad. Some people might have wanted individual limelight though, so I'm sorry if that's been ruined for them."

"I think that's more of the ocean's fault than yours," said Marshall, "seeing as our individual interviews have been cancelled due to how the ship is sinking there's no need to apologise. Not much you could do about that unless you're secretly Calypso or something."

"Oh now that's an exciting idea, is Lauren secretly the avatar of the ocean?" enthused Izzy energetically, "we'll head to our resident expert on the subject, Everett, how likely is it that Calypso is in the room?"

"Forget Calypso, it's Davey Jones I'm worried about," answered Everett grimly, his eyes firmly fixed on the ground as a substitute for his missing sunglasses. "This boat is going down; soon we will all sink below into the watery depths where the sun does not reach and those dark places we shall meet our ends."

"Okaaaaaaaaaaaay a little overboard there Everett, overboard, see what I did there!? No? Maybe we should change the subject?" suggested Izzy. "Stacey, you're the one who released Everett from the medical bay before the place was inundated with water, do you think you should get a medal for bravery?"

"Bravery doesn't come into it for me; I just have the overpowering desire to enforce justice and the law wherever I'm needed. Everett's unlawful imprisonment had to be corrected so I made it my first priority to free him. Until I see a court order demanding that he be locked up as a danger to society I won't allow such behaviour again. Speaking of justice, the kidnapping of Wolf when she was supposed to go home is one of the most atrocious crimes I've ever seen, I'd order her released if the only place to go wasn't the sea." Wolf perked up at the mention of her name and barked agreeably despite not having being paying attention to what Stacey was saying. "See, Wolf doesn't want to go in the ocean so there's not much I can do until Chris stops acting like a complete psychopath and gets us off this boat."

"No way, Wolf loves it here!" insisted Izzy, "she wouldn't want to leave the SS Izzy, greatest ship in the world! Especially since Everett's probably been making heaps of origami while he's been here, isn't it great Wolf?" Wolf looked curiously at Everett and seemed to notice for the first time that the boy wasn't wearing sunglasses anymore. She pointed at her own eyes and then at Everett's face, clearly confused by the fact he now had eyes where she had previously only seen darkened glass. "Oh yeah, Donovan was being a bit of a meanie and broke Everett's sunglasses instead of just taking them off, he probably had some backups but as usual Chris looted his luggage before sending it over here."

"So you would define it as mean to help someone become stronger? Then you can keep your kindness and the weakness it breeds," reasoned Donovan coldly. "No one would become strong if such blatant weaknesses were ignored, without his sunglasses Everett is stronger by far than he was with them. He still lives; no permanent harm was done to him."

"Sorry Donovan but I think your definition of permanent harm differs wildly from my own," interjected Marshall. "You can't just say that since he's not dead no permanent harm was done, someone's mind can be harmed just as easily as their body. He's still not looking at anyone and now he's doesn't even speak unless he's directly spoken to, he's gotten worse if anything."

"I fail to understand why Everett ceasing his paranoid prattle is a particularly bad thing," replied Donovan, a hint of smile playing around the corners of his lips, "but you are welcome to think of that as harm even if I do not. Learning to speak only when necessary is a strength, not a weakness."

"Whoa calm down Socrates, if you two want to have long philosophical duels you can do it on your own show," Izzy told them, "this is my show and the only philosophising we'll be doing here is when I bring it up. Marshall, you were strong contender for winning the million dollars, eliminating yourself during the final three seems like a strange move."

"I didn't want to play Chris Mclean's game anymore," he explained simply with a shrug, "he had this whole muskrat terror planned out and I managed to ruin it, that's a good enough reason for me to leave. Besides, Lauren voted for herself every chance she could get, even if she was immune and that led to her elimination as well, courtesy of Stacey."

"It was just good strategy," insisted Stacey, "don't act like it was some horrible crime, this is an elimination game show, and no offence Lauren, but anyone who votes for themselves every single time is just asking to get booted. It was the easiest way to ensure a majority vote while the rest of you were still fractured."

"You know that's an interesting point there Stacey, other than the weird stuff Donovan was constantly plotting, there didn't appear to be a great deal of strategy this season," observed Izzy, "you and Matthew were able to capitalise on the fact no one else was forming alliances to boot one of the biggest threats left in the game."

"I was one of the biggest threats?" asked Lauren sounding extremely confused, "that doesn't make much sense. Like Stacey said I only ever voted for myself, how is that threatening?"

"It's threatening from a jury point of view," said Maria, "eliminated contestants are less likely to help someone who got them kicked off and that help could make all the difference in the final challenge."

"If they needed help_" Donovan was suddenly cut off by Alice.

"Then they weren't worthy of reaching the final challenge in the first place?" she guessed, "Sorry Donovan but I don't even need to use psychic powers to predict the kind of things you're going to say. It's all, weakness, blah, strength, blah, worthy, blah, being kind is really bad, blah, my philosophy is the best in the world and I won't listen to any of you."

"You may mock me, though I do not recall your own advice being of particular use to anyone either," growled Donovan, "Since when has anyone overcome a crippling weakness on your watch?"

"Everett hasn't called me an evil telepath and screamed for me to get out of his head, does that count?"

"That was my doing you fool! Do not claim responsible for a delusion that I alone broke!"

"Would you two just wait a minute?" asked Izzy, "we can't even test Alice's claim without directly addressing Everett so let's do that first. Everett, do you want to call Alice and evil telepath and scream for her to get out of your head?"

"There's no such thing as telepaths," answered Everett flatly, "life is nothing but a giant mathematical equation and its secrets are beholden to none other than those who are masters of calculus."

"Wow great job there Donovan, you managed to replace one delusion with another one," drawled Isaac, "that takes some impressive skill. You know some people would have tried psychotherapy before plunging straight in with psychological trauma but I like your direct approach. Want to join my zombie survival group? Billy's in it."

"If walk among the wise you become wise, if you walk among the foolish you become foolish. That is my answer," was all Donovan said, another faint smile lingering on his face.

"Actually that probably depends on your fitness level," joked Marshall, "if you're not used to walking you might just get tired with sore feet instead."

"Orrrrrrrrrrr you might get sore gums from talking all through my interviews," interrupted Izzy amiably, "anything can happen. Anyway back to Stacey, tell us what you like about Matthew? Isn't just a video game obsessed rageaholic?"

"Anger is a sign that one is tired of all the injustices of the world," said Stacey, ignoring the fact that anger could mean a dozen of other things too. "I could tell immediately that he was a vigilante and a crusader for justice, whenever something bothered him he would rage about it and we have that in common. Whenever I caught laws being broken everyone would know about it. His righteous anger stood out to me like a beacon amidst a sea criminal intent and lunacy. Plus he didn't think I was just making the crimes up and actually agreed to help with my long term surveillance so that shows how perceptive and reliable he is."

"Hey, I helped you a couple of times," protested Marshall, "and I still got labelled as a criminal thug."

"That was just a fist fight against Sasquatchanakwa," Stacey told him dismissively, "that's nothing like going deep undercover amongst the criminal lunacy of the Killer Critics."

"Oh, I didn't think we were that bad," said Lauren, "I know Donovan was kind of evil and Wolf sometimes scares people_" people still hadn't learnt not to mention Wolf's name unless you wanted to be interrupted because Wolf immediately cut her off with another cheerful bark. "_and some people say Everett is dangerous but he means well, don't you Everett?"

"Well, a wide and often cylinder hole that has been drilled or dug down to an underground source of water. They can come with a circular wall of bricks for safety reasons and a small roof to keep the sun from overheating the water, or birds using it as a toilet, one of the two."

"See, whatever that was I don't think it sounded dangerous," continued Lauren as if Everett hadn't said something completely irrelevant. "Larry got booted first so no one needed to worry about him and Heidi and Maria were completely normal."

"I was expecting you to bring up the whole android thing," pointed out Maria, "but then again I'm not going to complain if that rubbish has finally died down. My voice isn't that monotonous."

"There we go again, I don't even know if this show needs a host, you guys all just talk amongst yourselves anyway," complained Izzy. "Can we move on to the more serious topic of your origin stories? We don't need all of them since we already know Wolf's origin story with the plane crash and living in the woods. Oh and Everett's too since he's ill and revealed that he's spent time in a mental asylum so that pretty much explains everything he gets up to. We'll start with you then Lauren, tell us about your artwork."

"I like to think that speaking is just one way we can express ourselves to the outside world. Some people write, some people sing, dance or play an instrument. There's a million ways out there, I reach out into the world with my art, it's something I can constantly draw on when words fail me in a situation. I'm not going to criticise our language, but sometimes there are things we just can't explain with words and for that there's art."

"There's some more philosophy for us, this show is just full of the stuff by the looks of it. Anyway, thanks for explaining that, can you tell us what in particular got you into the world of art?"

"Sometimes I have trouble connecting with other people, especially when I was younger. I know we're all supposed to be different but a lot of the time it feels like other people are really different. I try to talk to people but it comes out… strange? Or wrong maybe. So I had to find something I was good at and could talk about properly. That turned out to be art for me; I can talk about my work much better than all those everyday things other people talk about. That's why I came to Camp Wawanakwa, nothing is ever normal there so I thought that maybe I could fit in there at last. I think I did well, what do you think Everett, we spoke a bit about mind readers and stargazing? Did that go ok or was it just really bizarre?"

"Really bizarre?" Everett let out a sudden bark or laughter before continuing, "No, your conversational abilities weren't even close to being bizarre in my books. Book, a repository of printed words, often bound in a multitude of materials and can contain fact, fiction or a mixture of both."

"Cooooool Donovan's given him a new verbal tic, that's pretty awesome, who doesn't like getting new stuff!?" asked Izzy cheerfully, "speaking of awesome, that's Heidi's catchphrase and she was a friend of yours, I suppose you want her to win?"

"Wanting her to win would imply that I want Matthew to lose and that wouldn't be nice, I'd like Heidi to win because she was my friend and she's kind to people who are different like Wolf_" another bark from Wolf, "that said I'd also like Matthew to win because even if he was angry all the time that didn't mean he was bad and Stacey said all that nice stuff about him too so that must count for something."

"Well that's a nice if somewhat indecisive from Lauren; I suppose I should have expected that from someone who wouldn't vote for anyone else. We'll move on to Stacey, let's hear all about your time deep in the criminal underworld and how you ended up becoming obsessed with becoming a police officer?"

"I was not deep in the criminal underworld, it was just one tiny arson charge!" protested Stacey, "but I suppose I can share the story with you to provide inspiration in the power of justice. Listen up though because I'll only tell this story once. As you all well know, illegal gambling, in fact any gambling if you ask me is a very bad thing that perverts the course of justice and a whole lot of other really bad stuff like that. Anyway my father was completely addicted to gambling, we didn't have much money in the first place but he just kept gambling it away uncontrollably until we could hardly keep a roof over our head. My family was going hungry and we were about to lose the house so I guess I just snapped one night and followed my father down to the seedy bar he went to gamble at and I tried to burn the whole place down. No one got hurt though, and there was only minor fire damage so don't get on my back about being a huge criminal or anything like that. Oh and by the way I cannot condone the use of arson solve problems, even if it does work."

"And did attempting to burn down a bar solve anything?" asked Izzy, "Because I've heard that if you can't fix a problem you just aren't using enough fire."

"I got into an argument about that very thing once," commented Billy, "over just burning your homework if you don't want to do it. It always escalates to you having to burn the entire planet to fix all the other things you caused with all the other fires though."

"I do not in any way condone people burning the entire planet," said Stacey, repeating her earlier statement, "but it did sort of work, since the fire drew police attention to the bar and they finally shut down the illegal gambling going on. Between that and me getting charged with arson it was enough to shock my father out of gambling, so I suppose the story has a happy ending. I wanted to join the police so that in future I could fix things the right way instead of resorting to vigilante arson. That's why I respect Matthew, because if I'd followed a different path I could have ended up just like him spending my days raging against injustices without being able to fix them properly. Sure Matthew managed to take down a website with his enraged trolling but that was hardly the best way to handle the matter and won't work for everything."

"Especially since Matthew's brand of trolling is done from behind a keyboard," added Marshall, "fine for attacking websites, no so great at many other things. Unless you carry the keyboard around with you for potential use as a weapon I suppose."

"And there we have another origin story completed!" cheered Izzy, "see, isn't this great fun, now the only one left who there's any great mystery about is our favourite martial artist himself! But before then we've still got to wrap up on Stacey's hopes for the winner. This is fairly obvious but can I assume you're hoping that Matthew will win the million dollars?"

"Of course, I'll admit that Heidi isn't a criminal but she's hardly likely to do anything of use with the money right? Matthew shares my visions of justice and he could definitely make a difference with a million dollars so of course I want him to win."

"You know I really thought there was difference between anger management problems and visions of justice but whatever," Izzy shrugged in a 'what can you do' way and continued speaking. "So let's hear it Marshall, are you secretly Batman using your legendary martial arts skills to patrol the streets at night to fight crime? Were you lacking direction as a child until you met a mysterious mentor figure who began to train you in martial arts starting with making you perform seemingly irrelevant tasks?"

"Ok both those options were just plain ridiculous," complained Marshall, "of course it wasn't either of those. My family owns a martial dojo and has for generations now, I hope to work there as an instructor myself one day so of course I threw myself into practicing martial arts with the rest of my family. We've always been taught to only use our skills in self-defence ad never to start fights or intentionally harm others and I like to stick to that. It doesn't always work thanks to the efforts of some people," he shot a dark glare at Donovan, "but it's the thought that counts with that sort of thing."

"Ah, but you can't blame everything on Donovan, during the Circle of Truth Chris implied that you'd sent someone to hospital at one point, how'd you manage to pull that off if you try to avoid harming others?" asked Izzy.

"There are always exceptions to every rule," said Marshall, suddenly speaking through gritted teeth as though a bad memory had somehow welled up into his mouth and he was trying to prevent it from escaping. "I refused to speak about that earlier I'm not likely to speak about it now. Let it suffice to say that there a some things you can never just stand back and watch and leave it at that."

"Aw, that sucks; well if you won't speak we can just get some philosophy from Donovan."

"So you have broken your code of inaction previously," mused Donovan, "I had thought my efforts to provoke you into fighting were surely the first. I wonder how many more times you will have to be pushed before you dispense with your foolish hesitation altogether? I find myself intrigued as to what this situation you faced was, and what I would do in your place, would standing by have created strength, or was the action in itself an expression of weakness that deserved to be stopped? Very interesting."

"See look, he's always ready to philosophise even you if you don't give a proper answer, you could just stare at him for five minutes and he'd have some deep comment all about that as well," said Izzy in amusement. "I think Donovan is trying to get his own show as well, good luck buddy. Anyway, Marshall is being stubborn about his origins but we know his love of martial arts comes from his family and future aspirations so that will have to do until I update my interrogation training on one of those neat courses you can take. I'll just have to make do with asking who you want to win instead?"

"I'm going to have to agree with Stacey here and say I want Matthew to win," replied Marshall. "Heidi's only in the game for a laugh and I reckon she'd have absolutely no idea what do to with the money if she won it. Matthew's got some hilarious plans already lined up for the money; they've got to follow him with a camera when he goes to sack Rome because that is going to be an event of unprecedented epicness. Plus I still haven't forgiven Heidi for deliberately refusing to take my order so she could have some sugar filled monstrosity instead."

"One million dollars over a cake? That's harsh," commented Izzy, "I would have valued it more around one-hundred thousand but whatever, let's move on. No it's not really an origin story but I did discuss it with Alice in a previous episode so I can't forget to ask Everett about the origami. I know the original question was about why Wolf was stealing it but since she's can talk…"

"Talk, the movements of the vocal chords and tongue produced to allow the transmission of communicable language for the purpose of gathering or dispensing information. I think people talk for other reasons too but don't ask me to list them," said Everett, "because that'd take far too long. About the origami, it's a mental coping strategy, when I was younger I used to twist my fingers around into all sorts of complex knots whenever my mind started to race as a way to try and drag myself back into the present. The hospital didn't think that was an overly healthy hobby and taught me origami instead. Now when I start having irrational thoughts I make monsters out of paper to drive out the ones in my head. Wolf likes them because they remind her of home and I don't really mind her taking them, because I've got hundreds of them back home."

"Don't say that in front of Wolf, she'll go berserk and try to steal the lot!" warned Izzy jokingly before bursting out laughing at Wolf's confused expression. "Anyway, now that we've sorted to origami mystery out, would you like to tell us who you'd like to win?"

"Win, a term primarily used to describe a success and can also be used to describe certain situations, for example, a win-win situation. I'd like Heidi to win because she's my friend and she said I was allowed to come to her parties even though I was banned for life from everyone else's so that's really nice. She listens to my stories as well, I know she probably just thinks they're funny instead of serious but a lot of people don't listen at all so that counts a lot with me."

"Is that why you made her that fire spirit piece of origami? That must have taken a lot of work to colour it in and everything when you're usually all over the place."

"I like making origami of distinctive people meet, it helps me remember them," answered Everett hesitantly, "at least I think that's why I make them, I've just been doing it ever since I got good at origami. I've got some more back in my luggage wherever that is, there's a giant Donovan, an android Maria and a Mind flayer that has Alice's name written on it since it doesn't look anything like her to name some."

"Well that sounds like a lovely hobby, I don't think it's one you'll be able to keep up while you're here though," warned Izzy, "on the grounds that this place sinking like a stone, more water is coming in here with every passing second." Surely enough, where there had once been no water on the floor, a thin layer of it had started to appear, indicating that soon only the top deck would provide refuge from the rising water. "Another reason to do all the interviews at the same time isn't it!" exclaimed Izzy, as though that was the most serious problem with the situation. "Now since this show is so irregularly programmed and I've sort of lost track of what I'm supposed to be doing, I suppose I should finally get around to asking Wolf who she wants to win. What do you think Wolf? Who would you like to see get a million dollars?" Wolf sat silently for a long moment as though she was seriously considering her answer before giving a very slow and measured bark. If it was possible for a bark to sound wise, she'd somehow managed it there. "Ah, she said she wants me to win," announced Izzy, maybe it was a redhead trait to be pretend understand things they couldn't because the only other person who did that was Heidi. "That's nice but I can't win since I'm not a contestant."

"And I sincerely doubt you'd win even if you were," added Cynthia, "such uncivilised attire you've decided to wear, no class at all. I'm surprised you made it past the first elimination of any season you were on between your 'clothes' and your brash intrusive mannerisms."

"I'm sure she really likes you as well Cynthia," joked Chance, "you just have a really charming way of speaking to people."

"I know," she replied, missing or ignoring the sarcasm, "I had special instructors just for the purpose of learning tact and diplomacy.

"Oh I've got instructors too," bragged Izzy, "the animals in the woods tell me stuff all the time so I can survive in the wild like a pro. I can talk to animals don't you know?"

"Yes, we are all well aware of that you are possessed by the delusion that can you speak to animals and also translate any noise Wolf makes into fluent English. Knowing and caring are two very different things though; I care slightly more about the fact we're all going to die!"

"You're priorities are so messed up," insisted Izzy, rolling her eyes incredulously, "how can you be thinking about death when I haven't even gotten around to asking the newly eliminated contestants about their time on the island and any friends or enemies they made while there! You can't possibly miss that_" on the contrary it turned out that they could miss that because Izzy's words were lost when what sounded like an entire airbase worth of helicopters descending upon the Brig. If you could possibly strain your ears to hear beyond that, you might also have heard the clanging sound of large mechanical claws digging into the side of the ship and the whine of engines straining at full power.

"Wow, was blowing the entire sound effects budget the next scheduled portion of the show or did whoever you have working in the control room just fall asleep and land on the wrong button?" shouted Maria over the din, "because it's really funny and all but even listening to you talk was preferably to being deafened by this racket."

"Oh that's not me," Izzy shouted back, sounding rather unconcerned despite this sudden turn of events, "Chris must have hired those pirates for one last mission, I told you we weren't going to die until my show was over!" Before anyone could ask her for clarification that truth of the matter became horribly clear as the ship lurched upwards and there was a great whoosh of displaced water escaping the ruined hull to plummet back into the ocean. A mere hour or so before the Brig sunk irretrievably beneath the waves, Chris had finally sent his army of pirates the airlift the whole ship out of the water and transport it elsewhere for unknown purposes.

"They're going to take us back to Camp Wawanakwa!" Isaac managed to call out over the din of the helicopters and items of furniture scraping across the floor, sometimes with people still on them "It must be time for the big finale if they're bringing us back, I hope Chris hasn't flooded the island with zombies as a challenge!"

"Forget zombies, there's something far worse on that island," Alice advised him solemnly, "a sadistic entity known as Chris Mclean. Some believe him to be a myth but unfortunately he's all too real."

"I know, I only just got away from him a couple days ago," complained Marshall, "here we go again!" And so the Brig was hauled into the air and dragged in the general direction of Camp Wawanakwa, great torrents of water pouring out of the submerged lower decks like the blood of some great wounded animal. All the contestants of this season were returning to the island for one last time, the finale was now and you could rest assured that it was going to be epically insane.


Back at Camp Wawanakwa: Outside the Merged Maniacs Cabin

By all calculations this should have been the day of the final challenge, the big finale that would end this whole season with a bang. Heidi and Matthew were starting to think those calculations had been wrong though after the early morning had passed without any unpleasant wake up calls from Chris, Chef, or anyone else on the island for that matter. So not only had they been allowed to sleep in, the two of them were currently seated peacefully on the front steps of their cabin just waiting for something to happen. It wasn't like Chris to let things pass so peacefully on the day of the grand finale, something was clearly wrong here and since they hadn't received any summons from Mclean to find out what exactly the demented problem was, they were forced to guess.

"Reckon that the interns finally had enough of Chris Mclean and staged a violent revolt to overthrow him?" guessed Matthew, "only I didn't think there'd be that many of left after that whole muskrat crisis and all." Pretty soon after the final bonfire ceremony it had become abundantly clear that island was in fact still infested with the imported muskrats and an enraged Chris had immediately commanded Chef and the interns to get rid of them. That had gone about as well as you'd expect, they'd spent the last couple of days fruitlessly battling the muskrats and all they had to show for it was a dozen missing interns and a new thousand yard stare. Since the muskrats weren't actually supposed to be that dangerous, the most popular theory about the missing interns was that they'd been driven insane and were now permanently living in the woods amongst the animals.

"No, I think the ones that are left have gone into hiding so they stand a chance of surviving what's left of this season," answered Heidi, "only Chef's left fighting the muskrats now. Or at least I assume he's fighting the muskrats judging by that explosion we heard last night. He must have resorted to dynamite now."

"I thought he must have called the army in, I swear I heard dozens of helicopters flying over the island this morning, I can't believe you slept through it!"

"Trust me, it takes a lot of sleep to maintain the level of energy I need to stay this awesome for the whole day, it'll take more than a couple of helicopters to interrupt me."

"You didn't seem to mind losing sleep when you were busy waking the whole cabin up with your investigation though, did you just stop being awesome on those days or what?"

"I allowed myself to be slightly less awesome for the good cause of finding the snakes that eliminated Lauren, which you did by the way," Heidi said accusingly, "don't think I've forgotten about that."

"It hardly matters now does it? There's going to be another elimination ceremony so you can't exactly keep trying to vote me off for it," said Matthew calmly, "and I've already told you it was just a strategic move. Don't take it like a personal attack on your friend."

"It was a personal attack! You kicked her off for being too nice therefore it was today with her personality which is definitely personal. Therefore, I win with my flawless logic, it's pointless trying to argue against me don't you know?"

"Yeah but for entirely different reasons than the ones you're thinking of," cracked Matthew, slapping his knee and howling with laughter. "You really walked into that one didn't you?"

"Was that another joke calling me stupid again? Because I'm getting really sick of those, this whole season it's been all, Heidi has no soul, Heidi is an airhead, Heidi has an overinflated ego I'm extremely intelligent ok? Why does no one believe me?"

"Maybe because believing obvious lies isn't something most people do?" guessed Matthew with a laugh, "boy I am on fire this morning!"

"Lauren should be here in the final two," insisted Heidi, "she wasn't mean to anybody so she shouldn't have been kicked off like that."

"The fact that she only plays a goody two shoes in video games has nothing to do with her placement in the elimination ladder, this is a game and people get eliminated for a whole bunch of reasons, being a threat is one of them. Lauren was a threat and therefore any smart player would ensure that she didn't make it to the finale."

"There's a difference between the smart thing and the right thing though! I don't care how smart it was to eliminate her, I wouldn't have done it and neither did anyone else other than you and Stacey."

"That's because none of you were thinking strategically, you were all playing independently just plodding along from challenge to challenge. Stacey's genius abilities at finding hidden criminals help her think up killer strategies as well. She might not have made to the finale but I did so that shows that she at least half knew what she was doing. I still haven't come even remotely close to finding all the criminal activities she spotted on the island and I have even less distractions."

"That's because there are no criminal activities on the island," snapped Heidi irritably, "and the ones she made up were blatantly offensive as well. She was always on Everett's back about how he was insane but last time I checked that wasn't a crime."

"It wasn't just insanity, it was criminal lunacy," corrected Matthew, "there's a difference."

"Is the difference that Stacey is completely delusional and the rest of us aren't? Because that's what I think it is."

"Delusional! The laws are real; she wasn't just making the whole thing up you know! There is a serious crime problem on this island."

"I'll give you that, but the only real criminal here is Chris Mclean, there's no need to accuse everyone else of a crime mere moments after meeting them. Especially over something they can't control."

"Only Chris Mclean? Surely you're forgetting how Donovan attempted to stab you with a freaking spear, even if it does suffer huge penalties when used at closed range but it's still a deadly weapon."

"I don't count Donovan because he's a terrible person and shouldn't be counted unless we're listing terrible people," said Heidi, as though that made any sense whatsoever. "Are we listing terrible people? No we're listing criminals, get with the program Matthew." Matthew just stared at her for a long moment before suddenly bursting out in uncontrollable laughter.

"Oh man what are we doing?" he finally managed to ask between his bursts of laughter, "we shouldn't be at each other's throats like this in the final two, that's exactly what Chris wants. The island is getting to us, how about we just forget Lauren and Stacey and Everett and Donovan and all that other crap that's making us angry and deny Chris the drama he wants from us? We were on the same team once." Heidi considered him for a moment before finally giving him a slow nod.

"And we can still be on a team now, a team against Chris Mclean and all his stupid plans. I'm still mad about Lauren's elimination and we'll never agree about Stacey's psychiatric condition but we can at least stop arguing about all of this and stay awesome. Deal?"

"Deal! We're not going to go into this finale as enemies for Mclean's insane ratings scheme no matter how many problems we've had on this island. Think of everything that's happened here as like a bizarre dream sequence that tests your willpower before the actual test. None of it ever happened."

"How about some of it never happened? Because there were some good parts that happened believe it or not," said Heidi, thinking back on all the funny moments she'd been part of at Camp Wawanakwa. "Whatever Chris does he can't change the fact that we made it here and we've had some good times. You suck Chris!"

"Yeah! You suck even more than half-orc sorc!" added Matthew, shouting into thin air. "And if you don't know, that really sucks!" Not quite sure why, both Heidi and Matthew just laughed and continued to hurl out random insults about Chris, attacking his hair, personality and acting skills in equal measure. They expected Chris to finally take notice of them and actually get the challenge started instead just making them sit around for half the morning but no words left the speakers in response to their tirade. Instead they were confronted with the rapidly increasing roar of dozens upon dozens of helicopters approaching the island at a slow ungainly pace. The front steps were suddenly immersed in shadow as this immense fleet and its heavy burden blocked out the light of the sun. Matthew and Heidi scrambled to their feet and stared open-mouthed up at the skies. Suspended by innumerable steel cables, a hulking wreck of a rusted old fishing trawler loomed in the air above them. "RUN!"

They took off, desperately trying to get out from under the huge shadow of the wreck above them before its inevitable descent crushed the tar out of them. "Hello, this is your captain Chris Mclean and I'm here to warn you that we're just about to come in for a landing," now Chris was using the speaker system to address them. "Please, brace for impact!" as the last reverberations of his words faded away, the noise was quickly replaced by the deafening crack of every steel cable snapping at once. For a long moment the ship seemed to stay there motionless and impossibly high in the sky before it was suddenly plummeting with alarming speed. Heidi and Matthew only just barely made it far enough away and hurled themselves to the ground before the impact.

There was an almighty thud that shook the very earth beneath them as the wreck slammed straight down on top of the Merged Maniac's Cabin. Wooden splinters and shattered fragments of glass exploded outwards and dotted the grass like tiny grave markers. The ship itself let out a tremendous groaning noise as rivets split and its hull ruptured open until it slumped in on itself. Then, at last as clouds of dust billowed up from around the crash site, there was silence. For all of about five seconds anyway, then Chris Mclean interrupted just like he always did. "That. Was. Awesome! I've always wanted to drop a fishing trawler from a great height just to see what would happen. Renovating your cabin was a bonus since no one will be needing it anymore. After all, today is the GRAND FINALE! Oh and if anyone is alive in the Brig could you please come out now? I'll be there in a minute," with a harsh screech the speakers fell silent once more and Heidi and Matthew turned to gaze back to the wreck of the Brig, waiting to see if anyone would emerge.

"Whoa, that was like nearly as bad as the time I tried steering a yacht at my family reunion," babbled Izzy, presumably talking to herself as she emerged out of one of the gaping holes in the hull. "You must be Matthew and Heidi, nice to meet you, everyone else has been on the Brig already so I know all of them like family! How are you two going?"

"A ship just fell out of the sky and smashed the cabin we were sitting in front of only moments ago into a thousand little pieces," Matthew told her hoarsely, "how do you think we're going?"

"Awesome?" guessed Izzy, "or maybe it would have been cooler if you were on the Brig like the rest of us. I'll have to reverse time and watch from the ground to compare the views."

"I always feel awesome," replied Heidi automatically without even having to think about the words. "I'm just surprised is all, I mean I know Chris has a bad temper but I didn't expect him to throw a ship wreck at us over a few little insults."

"Yep, it's all fun and games until someone throws a fishing trawler at you," agreed Izzy seriously, "anyway I think that's enough time for the rest of my crew to pull themselves together. Sailors of the SS Izzy, report for duty!" she shouted that part back into the hull to communicate with the eliminated contestants who may or may not have been alive in there at this point in time. "That means get out here by the way!"

"They were unprepared for such a trial and so are taking some time to recover," replied Donovan, casually strolling out to stand beside Izzy. Of course he'd be the first one to leave the ship; nothing ever faced the giant of a boy. "They will join us shortly, if only to finally get away from the Brig, I fear they have not enjoyed their time there very much."

"Donovan!" shouted Heidi angrily, "we were just talking about you this morning and how you tried to kill me with a spear during a challenge! Are you going to apologise for that yet or are you still an evil jerk?"

"You seem unclear on the difference between dying and being injured," observed Donovan, "I would be remiss to apologise for an event that was never going to occur. As I have explained, I had an important reason for doing that and it would have saved us all a lot of bother if it had succeeded."

"That's Donovan's monster story," explained Sandra, emerging from the hull and dusting off her lab coat. "Something about some sea monster he was trying to ward off using some occult ritual or other. The sort of nonsense Alice and Everett are always talking about, not that I should mention those two in the same sentence or else Everett will probably flip out again."

"Flip out; a term used to describe the loss of some sort of emotional control, typically used in reference to anger or insanity," said Everett, who apparently thought Sandra had been directly addressing him or else he wouldn't have spoken. "I have no plans to flip out, but then again I don't plan many things out properly. Hello, Heidi, hello Matthew."

"Sorry about him," Maria was the next one out, shrugging apologetically and looking at Everett. "I know it's probably hard to believe but he's come back to the island a little stranger than when he left it. At least he hasn't mentioned androids or telepaths lately so that's in improvement."

"Ugh, that's confusing," complained Matthew, "now I can't tell whether Everett lost or gained a level of insanity after what Donovan did to him. Mental stats can be so confusing at times."

"Willpower, intelligence, perception and sanity I think," Said Alice as she strolled out of the hull as if the crash landing had been little more than a bumpy car trip, "forgive me if I've missed any. Perhaps his sanity score decreased but his perception or intelligence increased to sort of even things out so there is no change at all?"

"Whoa, I didn't know you played games Alice," said Matthew, sounding thoroughly impressed, "some people count willpower and resolve as different stats but it really depends on who you ask. Suddenly defining all that stuff sounds like an intelligence boost to me."

"I thought he was always that smart," said Lauren, the next one to join them on solid ground, "after all he was always building those complex contraptions and such. There are many different kinds of intelligence that people seem to ignore and that's pretty sad."

"Lauren! It's great to see you again!" enthused Heidi, "I managed to half avenge your elimination anyway and I've only got to beat Matthew before everyone who voted for you is gone! Oh and you're completely right about that intelligence stuff, people are always calling me stupid just I don't know all that sciency maths stuff Sandra likes to rave about."

"Don't listen to her," advised Billy, tipping his army helmet respectfully in Heidi's direction, "I'm the smartest man alive and I know intelligence when I see it," Sandra made no comment but did scoff rather loudly in response to that. It was obvious which kind of intelligence she valued the most.

"Listening is an important skill to surviving the zombie apocalypse though," added Isaac, "so don't ignore everything Sandra says. If it's something like 'watch out there's a zombie behind you' you should pay attention to that at least." He probably would have wanted to continue his lecture on zombie survival but he interrupted by Wolf brushed past him as she bounded down to see Heidi. The wild girl ran in delirious circles around her friend, barking happily the whole time."

"Ha, it's great to see you too Wolf!" said Heidi, cheerfully ruffling Wolf's hair, "it wasn't fair how your relatives came to take you away when you were so close to winning the million. What happened with that anyway? Aren't you supposed to be at the hospital?"

"I suppose I shall have to answer that as our dear friend Wolf is incapable of human speech," said Cynthia, cautiously making her way off the boat, cane tapping out a steady rhythm in front of her. "She is supposed to have been sent to a secure facility to be examined by experts but Chris sent all of them to the Brig instead, I'm not actually sure what happened to her aunt and uncle. They were on the top deck when all this unpleasantness with helicopters started."

"Helicopters are for posers, I would have invented a giant mechanical albatross to do it instead," Larry told them self-importantly. "Or just had my mechanical shark legion tow it back to Wawanakwa with minimal noise and hassle."

"I'll thank you to leave your sharks well out of this," warned Chance, "I haven't forgotten how one of the blasted things damn near broke my back. I'd rather not take the gamble of facing one of those monstrosities again. How's it going you two?" he called down to the finalists, "I have to say the betting pool was surprised by you two, there was some tech guy who saw Matthew getting there but other than that it was a bit of surprise."

"I told you I wanted on more gambling on the Brig after I arrived!" snapped Stacey irritably, "and that ride most certainly did not meet transport safety standards! No wonder those pirates took with their helicopters, they knew I'd book them otherwise! Good to see you Matthew, win the million dollars for truth and justice and no more gambling ok?"

"I can certainly try," Matthew snapped off a smart salute before breaking out into a massive grin at the sight of her. "Shame you couldn't be here in the final too, you could have won whatever Chris has cooked up for sure!"

"I'm not a gambler like Chance," started Marshall, who had been waiting until last to make sure everyone else got off the ship alright. "But even he wouldn't make a claim like that; you never know what Chris is going to try. Even I'd think twice before trying my luck, he's already airlifted a fishing trawler, we're going to have to see whether the day gets more or less insane from here on out."

"That you will losers, that you will!" Chris had finally arrived from whatever control bunker he'd been lurking in to speak to them. "Let's put an end to this hilarious little family reunion of yours shall we? Once more sixteen losers are at Camp Wawanakwa but only two of you have a shot at being a winner. Heidi, Matthew, you are our final two and by the end of this day the season will be over and one of you will be one million dollars richer. That's right, I didn't just drop the Brig out of the sky because it was Tuesday, this is actually the grand finale." While he was speaking a team on interns descended up the Brig and disappeared inside, obviously setting something up for the final challenge. "I could have done this challenge without the Brig but hey I needed the other contestants back so I figured I may as well airlift the whole thing back over here."

"Might as well!? We barely had hours left before the whole thing sunk beneath the waves!" exclaimed Sandra, "I know you ignore lawsuits but getting most of the cast killed would have the police all over this place like a cheap suit! Are you insane!?"

"No, you're all insane, that's why I brought you on for this outrageous season," Chris told her flatly. "Over the course of this season three teams have battled against the challenges of this island, The Killer Critics, The Screaming Fans and The Merged Maniacs. Today a fourth team will join them, eight players for the final stage of the game."

"Sometimes my maths isn't that great but even I know that this can't possibly be the final if you're trying to have eight contestants form a new team," complained Isaac, "are we going to be stuck on this island for another month now or what? My holidays have so been wasted, I mean sure I haven't been killed by zombies which was my primary objective but_"

"Shut it Isaac! This is the finale because on two members, Matthew and Heidi are in the running ok!? The other six chosen will just be helping, is that clear? Geez you try to give some simple explanations and people just stare at you like you've grown two heads!"

"Two heads in addition to the one you already have or have only grown one extra bringing the total to two?" asked Lauren, as if they was even remotely important to know. "Because the reaction to a person with three heads would be different to the reaction of seeing a person with two heads don't you know? People are sort of used to seeing two heads with conjoined twins and all that but three heads would completely baffle them."

"What did I do to get stuck with such a pack of clowns," said Chris with a groan as he buried his head in his hands. "It doesn't matter Lauren, seriously why would you even ask? Anyway, we need another six members to join The Final Fortune Hunters! Each of our finalists will choose three helpers to assist them in this final challenge. Now because Heidi has no soul, you can choose first Matthew, pick three helpers on double time!"

"I get to choose my party first! Great, well I can't go past the stat boosts you get from a cohesive team bonus," mused Matthew, "so statistically speaking the best thing for me to do would be to revive an old organisation. We didn't have much luck last time, but I think it's time for one last hurrah for the Ace Zombie Slayer Association so I choose Isaac, Billy and Larry!" Chris blinked in confusion.

"You seriously want to choose the guy who made repeated attempts to kill you with evil robots and the two idiots that can't stop fighting each other to be your team?" he asked, "because we all thought Heidi was the stupid one here."

"Leave him alone Chris!" ordered Stacey although she did look a bit put out that Matthew hadn't chosen her, "Isaac and Billy have stopped fighting each other and Larry should finally help someone for a change rather than hurting them. It's a perfect team and it has… stat boosts like Matthew said."

"Geez calm down Inspector Gadget, he can have a useless team if he really wants to," said Chris before pointing at the three who'd been chosen, "all right you three, it's your lucky day, leave the crowd and stand with Matthew."

"Yeah!" Isaac punched the air in triumph, "brilliant choice Matthew, the Ace Zombie Slayers are back in action one last time! I've got some masterful strategies that will lead us to victory without a_"

"You do realise Matthew is the leader this time right?" asked Billy, "Because that's the confusion that tore us apart last time and my tactical genius won't allow it to happen again."

"You become and evil robotic mastermind and this is what happens?" complained Larry as he reluctantly joined the others beside Matthew. "I get to join some D-list zombie slayer group to help someone else win a million dollars. Is there truly no justice in this world!?"

"Funnily enough that sounds like justice right there," Maria told him drily, "go figure hey?"

"Alright, alright let's get on with the show can we?" interrupted Chris rudely, "Matthew's choice was a bit of upset but we all know who Heidi is going to choose. I could just send them over now but I'll at least pretend to be surprised at who she picks. Go ahead Heidi, don't devour any souls, just pick three of them."

"Alright well on my team I'd like… Lauren_"

"Called it!" shouted Chris, apparently forgetting this earlier promise to pretend to be surprised. "Next." Heidi appeared to have been confused by his sudden interruption but she swiftly recovered to name her next pick.

"And of course I can't go without Wolf_"

"Knew that was coming," drawled Chris, interrupting for a second time just to take his rudeness to new heights. "Final choice." Heidi glared at him furiously and out sheer spite called out a name that Chris definitely wouldn't expect.

"Donovan! That's my last choice so there! Did you know that was coming?"

"Donovan…? What the hell is wrong with you!?" demanded Chris, "I thought Matthew's choices were bad but you've picked someone who outright tried to kill you with a spear! You've been enemies since the first challenge and you choose him to help you win the grand finale? I knew you were soulless but I didn't know you were completely mad as well!"

"Um, well…" Heidi raced to think up some valid reason as to why she'd pick Donovan other than just to surprise Chris. "The finale is going to be dangerous and he's the most dangerous student on the island?" she tried hopefully. "Because he's more dangerous than the danger you've put in that dangerous ship wreck?"

"Strategy, I didn't think you had it in you! Must make up for not having a soul I suppose," reasoned Chris, shaking his head in mock wonder at the way world worked. "Well you were right, this upcoming challenge is definitely going to be dangerous, Lauren, Wolf and Donovan, head over to join Heidi before I introduce the challenge ok?" Lauren took Wolf's hand, as the girl didn't much seem to know what was going on other than the fact her name had been mentioned, and quietly led her over to stand with Heidi. Donovan remained motionless for a fair while longer, looking at Heidi curiously.

"I will admit I did not anticipate your choice, but in the end I should have known it would work out this way. I said that no winner would be worthy until they had bested me in the final so it is fitting that I am present for this, even if I am only permitted to test Matthew."

"Gee thanks Heidi," grumbled Matthew, "you're fine because he's supposed to be on your team, I've just gotten the violent giant stuck on my back! As if this wasn't going to be insanely dangerous enough without his help, now I've got to watch out for him too."

"I dare say it won't be as much of a hassle as you think Matthew, that Donovan fellow is rather demented if I do say so myself," commented Cynthia, "he's most likely to get bored and attack Heidi anyway, even if he is supposed to be helping her. Everything takes second place to his bizarre obsession with testing people."

"That will only happen if I feel that the dangers of this challenge alone are not enough for a worthy trial. I will be assisting her only to test my own strength against whatever Chris has lying in wait inside the Brig. Are those terms accepted?"

"Uh, yes I think," said Heidi, "personally I'd rather you didn't just randomly attack me if you think the challenge sucks but as long as you don't go on any psychotic murder rages again it should be fine." Donovan nodded grimly before walking over to join her beside Lauren and Wolf; the wild girl barked cheerfully in greeting and patted his arm. "Wolf says hello."

"Alright well the teams are finally settled, those of you who weren't picked, AKA LOSERS! Please make your way to the Killer Food Poisoning Restaurant. Camera footage from within the Brig is being live streamed to screens in there so you can watch the challenge. Dark sections of the ship will have night vision cameras before you whinge at me about pitch black interiors. You don't really need to know what's happening since you aren't competing but you will also have footage of me introducing the challenge streamed to you so you aren't completely baffled as to what you are watching. Everybody clear on that? Good, now scram!" The twelve contestants not chosen made their way over to the restaurant, some more reluctantly than others. Once they were gone more interns descended upon Chris to discuss last minute preparations, Wolf's family chief among them. "Wolf's relatives haven't left the ship yet and they're outright refusing to set foot onto this madhouse of an island? Who cares, they can stay on board and act as another obstacle or something."

"I wasn't very nice of Chris to abduct Wolf like that," mused Lauren, "she really should be going to a hospital. Luckily she still seems fine now," she smiled at Wolf who grinned back her before pointing at the Brig questioningly. "We'll be hearing about that soon, we have to help Heidi through there you know."

"Listen we need to have a clear strategy," meanwhile with the other group Isaac was back in his old element, "I think diamond formation with Matthew taking point, no wait, Larry should take point because no one trusts him not to sneak off and do something robotically evil while no one is looking. Matthew can take the rear guard and_"

"You want me to walk at the back of the group through some dingy dark ship wreck?" demanded Matthew, "that's crazy, you do realise I'm the one who is supposed to make it to the end of this challenge right? Because the person at the back gets abducted the first time we go around a dark corner! I've seen the movies!"

"Relax, with my extensive army training nothing will be able to sneak up on us," Billy assured him, "my only weakness is Sandra with a heavy book and I doubt we'll be facing the likes of that in there."

"You say that now, how do you know that sending the other contestants to the restaurant wasn't just a ruse and they're all waiting for us in there once the challenge starts?" asked Larry, "it's what I would do. If I was out of evil robots that is, robots are far more useful in these situations than humans because they've got infra-red heat vision and motion and sound sensors."

"So do humans, they're called eyes and ears," argued Matthew, getting involved in what was likely to be a long, tiresome discussion the camera crew would most likely edit out before the audiences ever saw it. Donovan was most silent back with Heidi's group, staring impassively at the ship for several long minutes before he finally deigned to speak.

"I hope you are ready for this Red-haired One, I have a feeling that Chris Mclean is doing his utmost to make this challenge the most dangerous yet," he told Heidi.

"Did a magic spell tell you that?"

"No, just common sense."

"Really? No magic glowy bottles or anything?"

"I suspect you are mocking me and I do not find it overly amusing," said Donovan, a growl sneaking into his voice. "Is this how you treat your allies?"

"I could always stab them with spears if you'd like that," suggested Heidi with a grin, "but I generally try to avoid being that evil, yourself?" Donovan just glared down at her for a long moment before the ghost of a smile flitted across his face.

"This is a strange alliance indeed; perhaps there is some strength to you yet."

"The strength it takes to forgive someone?" asked Lauren, "because that's important too Donovan and Heidi is being really nice about that crazy stunt you pulled with a spear out on the lake."

"… perhaps you are right," agreed Donovan after thinking about it, "I have learned much to share with my people from coming to this island. The outside world is a very strange place, the stories I've heard did not cover half of this. I wonder if there is a kind of strength in all of you after all that I have not seen."

"_ Yeah I've just got to do something for the cameras and then we'll be good to go," Chris had just finished up with his last minute preparations and the interns surrounding him scurried away as the host turned back around to face the cameras. "Hello there all you wonderful ratings bringing viewers, just thought you'd like to know that I'm just about to explain the premise of this final challenge to our final two and their assistants. Of course while they'll be hearing it within the next couple of minutes, you on the other hand will have to wait until next time because this episode cuts here! CLIFFHANGER! How dangerous will the challenge be? Is Donovan even remotely trustworthy? Will the Ace Zombie Slayer Society fail horribly just like last time? When will you stop raging at your television sets and most importantly, who will win the million dollars! Find out the answers to all of those questions and more next time on Total Drama OUTRAGE!"

Authors Note: So yeah, just as Chris put out, Cliffhanger right here before the final challenge starts. Mostly because I need to have exactly twenty chapters because I like round numbers and this seemed like a decent place to to stop chapter nineteen. Hope the sudden cut-off isn't too rageworthy and thanks for reading.