Chapter Six: Path of Persephone

Luma Co-Star stood at the shore of the River Twygz. The cursed waters fed deep into the afterlife dimension and writhed with underhands and the unintelligible shrieks of the damned. In the wake of the opening of the chaos door, this place had changed little. He aimed down the iron sight of his magnum revolver as the ferryman’s boat floated to the shoreline.

“Whoaaa there,” Charold belched, “There issss no need to get violent. You like boatssss? I got a boat. We can ssssail to the UnderWhere. That would be fun, yeah?”

Luma Co-Star lowered his gun.  He did a hop, a twirl, and then two more hops.

“Huhhh? You don’t wanna go there? You want to go to hell?”

Luma Co-star hopped in agreement.

“Okay, that will be 8 coins.”

In response, he trained his revolver square on Charold’s forehead.

“Okay, fine. Nevermind. Fuck. Jussst get on.”

Co-Star Luma holstered his gun, and hovered over the boat as it sailed across the wailing river of tormented souls. He meditated over squirming underhands, and on his mission.

It had been 18 years since he was separated from his Special One. The memory of their adventures together was like a warm fire in his heart. He had been motivated to help him recover the power stars to stop the giant monster, but it did not take long for the attraction to become undeniable. There was just something about those strong arms, the way he moved, the earnesty of that mustache. His deepest dreams had come true when their eyes finally met, and somewhere lost in each other’s gaze their lips found each other and their passion was ignited, with tongue. Being held in those big, powerful arms became all Co-star Luma lived for, and then it was all taken away during the advent of Final Crisis 2. He didn’t care. He had to be reunited with his Special One. No matter what it took.

“Whelp, here we issssssssssssssssss.”

Floating in the middle of the River Twygz was a mysterious warp pipe. It was unlike any other warp pipe in the universe because it was red. Not like a regular red like in New Super Mario Brothers Wii, but like a really scary blood red that you would have in a nightmare (but only when they’re scary).

“Ssssssssss” Charold continued to lisp, belligerently.

Co-Star Luma floated up to the pipe, he peered down its yawning gulf and heard the screams of tortured souls, but they were kind of hard to make out because of all the screams of tortured souls in the water around them.  He began to descend into the pipe when Charold began leaping in alarm.

“WAIT! You know that thisss thing goes to HELL??”

Co-Star Luma rolled his eyes and warped down the pipe. He slid down, down, accelerating faster and faster, the roar of screams growing louder and louder as the pipe drew darker. The smell of sulfur was overwhelming, and smoke began pouring into his eyes, more and more until

“WAHAAAA!” Toad said as he hopped into player among the clouds. Co-Star Luma was confused and glanced around, seeing three others standing beside him.  Each of them looked incredibly tired, terrified, and emaciated. They was each tugging at ropes that did not seem to go anyway. Co-Star Luma hopped in question.

“Oh, ha. I didn’t… I didn’t see you there,” the Bean Bean beside him said vacantly, “You must be new. He’s making us play Tug-Of-War. Have you ever played it before?”

He twirled a no in response.

Without hesitation, the Bean Bean started the match before a practice round could be requested. Co-Star Luma was disoriented and found himself standing on one side of a chasm, holding a rope and dressed in a Bowser suit, while the three other damned souls were opposite of him. The Bean Bean grinned wickedly and yanked on the cord as soon as Toad shrieked “START!!!”

Concentrating, Co-Star Luma rotated the analog stick of his soul as hard and as fast as he could, desperately trying to stand his ground. The arm of his arm began to hurt and the moment he slowed down it was too late, he was pulled face first into the chasm where a gargantuan piranha plant sunk its fangs deep into his torso and began ripped his flesh asunder in the most morbid and fetish-y way possible. The sweet release of death never came as Co-Star luma continued to maintain consciousness as he was reduced to a smear of paste and digested in excruciating pain for what must’ve been a week.

So then the round was over and everyone else got ten coins but he didn’t and that made him really mad.

In the sky over Space Land, the words ‘ROUND 25,123 of 9,999,999 START’ appeared, and it was Co-Star Luma’s turn to hit the dice block. Shit. There was no way that he would have time to complete this competition. He let the dice box squeal overhead and turned toward the Nimbi who was five spaces ahead of him on the map. He twirled twice to ask how he might escape.

“Dude, we’re kind of trapped here for all eternity for punishment for leading shitty mean spirited lives. We get the Mario Bandstand minigame like 80% of the time and it fucking sucks.”

“I GOT AN IDEA DUDE!” Shouted a Crazee Dazee from across the map, “ASK HIM IF HE WANTS THE CONTROLS EXPLAINED TO HIM”

“No! No! Shhh! Don’t even joke abou-“

Toad leapt down from the sky, his eyes ravenous. “Do you want me to explain how to control the game?”

Because this was hell, the only options in response were ‘Yes,’ and at once Toad launched into an excruciatingly detailed explanation about how to press the A Button to jump and how analog sticks work. The pace at which he was explaining the controls indicated that he may be at this for another twenty minutes.

“Run,” the Nimbi pleaded, vacantly “You haven’t been here long enough to have your spirit broken. You have to get out while you can!”

Co-Star Luma tried, but couldn’t move. He twirled in panic. The Nimbi withdrew a Bowser Bomb from his pocket and hurled it. The explosion sent Co-Star Luma falling over the edge of Space Land and into the inky darkness of space. He landed, with a sudden thud, on top of a large ball. Ahead of him, he saw a steep one-way slide obstacle course littered with purple coins. At once, the ball started to move and Co-star Luma was sent careening down the incline at dizzying speeds. After a few insta-kills from falling over the side, he finally made it to the end of the track in one piece where a Gearmo was waiting.

“Hey, you only got 54 of 100 coins. Come back after you get more. And before another word could be said, Co-star Luma appeared at the start of the track and was sent down again. He tried going purposefully after the coins, but the controls were so frustrating and finicky and if he screwed up even slightly it was impossible to go back and get a coin and FUCK HE FELL OVER THE EDGE AGAIN OKAY THIS TIME WE’RE GONNA DO IT ARGH GOD DAMN IT.

Calming himself, Co-Star Luma tried to focus and complete this task with composure. Then he fell off the edge four times in a row.

“SON OF A BITCH SHITTING DAMN FUCK COCK SUCKER!” Screamed Co-Star Luma, who was frustrated.

Finally, after 3 more hours of this, Co-Star Luma got fed up and shot the Gearmo in the face with his magnum the moment he landed. The gun shot starbits, so it stunned the Gearmo for a couple seconds.

“Hey pal, I seem to have a lot of trash piled up around here. If you can destroy it all under the time limit, I’ll give you a star!”

Co-Star Luma shoved the Gearmo over the edge of the platform and he fell into a black hole where he was crushed to death painfully.

“Well done little star, I see you have bested one of my many challenges!”

Satan, the devil, appeared slow clapping out of a puff of smoke. “Not many are able to get out my many sinister and clever punishments! Good show!”

Co-Star Luma twirled.

“What’s that? You want me to reunite you with your special one?” Asked the Great Deceiver.

Co-Star Luma hopped.

“Well, I guess that would be fine. But could you do me a favor in return?”

Co-Star Luma made a really angry face in response.

“Oh, don’t be like that. You don’t have to. I just needed some help and you look like you might be able to assist me,” said the Author of all Sin.

Begrudgingly, Co-Star Luma twirled in agreement.

“Splendid! Oh, I knew you’ve be able to help,” The prince of darkness clapped in excitement, “I need you to help me beat Chaos Satan. He’s a big problem because he’s trying to take over hell and make it a worse place! We have to stop him!”

Co-Star Luma DID think that was a noble task, and decided that it if it meant being able to be together with his Special One again that it was worth any effort. However, before he was able to ask where they would begin, Lucifer put a finger to his lips and hushed him.

“Wait. We have to get out of here. My boss is coming. If he finds us here he’ll kill us both.”

Co-Star Luma looked for some way off the platform, but there were no paths but bottomless pit.

“HE’S HERE!” In panic, the chief of demons bent down on one knee and bowed low, “My liege! I-I didn’t expect to see you here! Please forgive me for straying from my post?”

Co-Star Luma grew pale as he looked into the smiling face of Belome.

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