Time Extension


It was time to randomly select the game for the round. Since it was three on one, Peach could choose. After a second of deliberation, as though it meant anything, she hit the button. She had a lot riding on this so she hoped it was a game she was good at.

The selector jumped from game to game stopping quite suddenly. Crate and Peril. It was decided and everyone was whisked off to the stage to prepare for the competition.

Not one of Peach’s favorite games. Having only played it twice before and from the other perspective both times she felt ill prepared. However it was her turn next after this game and she could make her bid past Mario for the star space but she needed the coins to try. A Goomba orb and a lost duel left her destitute and this was her first chance for a comeback. Hefting the unwieldy crate in petite, gloved hands she looked inside. Mario, Waluigi, and Toad, her diminutive opponents looked back up at her, the plumber giving her an almost imperceptible wink and smile. She smiled back and she could hear the announcer.

“Ready? GO!” Commands the automated referee.

With that Peach began tilting the box as best she could trying to arrange impromptu introductions of spinies to the occupants of the box. It wasn’t going well to say the least. The package was cumbersome and wasn’t getting much done. Of course her opponents weren’t making it easier either.

Mario was jumping every spiny that came his way. He seemed too alert to be caught unawares by the spiked shells. Waluigi had wedged his tall lanky self between the wall of the box and an obstacle effectively suspending himself above the danger zone. Toad on the other hand had fled to a corner and cowered, his small form able to claim some kind of sanctuary in the area since the spinies couldn’t fit in tight spaces.

Peach decided it was time for drastic measures. She wasn’t going to get Mario but maybe if she could shake the other two from their places maybe she could get them to trip each other up. Maybe. At that conclusion she began to shake the box up and down.

Mario didn’t miss a beat. Still the jumping champion (second to his brother) even if the box was bobbing with him. Waluigi began doing the most amazing contortions to avoid being hit. With the red pointy things hopping up and down to meet him he had to do some evasive maneuvers while still hanging above the floor. Toad simply clung as tightly as he could to his position confident that if he should leave it that an object the size of a boulder would land on him. His fear had to have tripled once he lost his grip and let out the most plaintive moan.

Peach couldn’t help but giggle at the shrill little noise Toad was making. All the antics in the box were too amusing. As she watched the sliding Toad bumped into Mario’s foot causing him to jump off balance and knock Waluigi from his perch sending them all tumbling down to the floor in a confused bickering heap. She was too busy laughing to maneuver the crate so that the spinies would hit them. It got to the point where her grip was slipping she was laughing so hard.

“Finish!” Came the familiar announcement voice all too soon.

“Darn!” Peach thought to herself. “Guess I won’t be getting that star…” But looking down in the box and watching the winners do their victory poses with their tiny little voices made her laugh all the more. With that they leave the stage and return to the game board.

…or so she thought. A couple minutes later, after wiping the tears from her eyes from laughing she was still sitting on the stage with the open box on her lap. What’s more Daisy, Toadette, Wario, and Bowser Kid appeared on the far side of it.

“Hey,” Calls Daisy. “We need the stage.”

“Hm?” Peach had been lost in thought gazing into the box. “What is it?” She asks looking up.

“We need the stage.” Daisy repeats. “We’re setting up for a game of ‘Odd Card Out’.”

“That means LEAVE!” Wario yells harshly.

“But… we can’t.” Peach says softly.

“What are you talking about? And who’s ‘we’?” Daisy asks walking towards her.

“They’re still in the box…”

“In the –oh, I see.” Daisy says spying the other partiers.

“What? Let me see!” Toadette demands, hopping up and down trying to see over their shoulders. “Ooo!” She squeals peering into the container.

“What are you doing?” Bowser Kid whines. “When are we starting the game? They’re almost done setting up!” True enough, the shy guys had just about finished putting everything up.

“Would you do me a favor? Go find our gracious hosts, Twila and Brighton, and get them to stop arguing for a little bit. We can’t start until Peach is off the stage.”

“Why doesn’t she use the door?” The little koopa king asks. “It’s right-”

“Why don’t you both use the door and do as I ask?!” Daisy snaps. “Now GO!” The chagrined pair slinks off through the door in question looking for the sun and moon. “Thank you!” She adds gaily as an afterthought.

“Why doesn’t she use the door?” Toadette asks.

“Because Brigton or Twila, whoever started the game, has to release any stage magic they use.” Daisy explains. “It’s no problem to use the door for a board game or game show like ‘Odd Card Out’ but if you’re sucked down a whirlpool or shrunk during the course of a game that’s something they have to fix…”

“Which wouldn’t be a problem if they could stop acting like idiots for five seconds!” Peach finishes angrily. “They aren’t even watching us half the time!”

Daisy nods then looks in the crate again. “Mm hm. Hey, is that Mario? He looks so cute in there…” She absently reaches into the box for him.

“Don’t touch!” Peach says snatching the box away. “He’s mine!”

Daisy laughs. “So there is something going on after all…”

“We’re just friends!” Peach says hastily.

“Uh huh!” Toadette also has a laugh at the head of Mushroom Kingdom royalty’s expense.

“Let me see one of them.” Daisy says. “I just want to hold one…”

“Get your own!” Peach hoists the box up out of range, feeling petulant at being teased.

“Come on, be fair!” Daisy reaches up and grabs Peach’s elbow, pulling it down low enough to get a handhold on the box. Now they’re having a tug of war. “Let me!”

Toadette thinks it’s a laugh riot. Rolling around onstage she is having a fit. Her sides hurt from all the laughing.

In the box Mario, Toad, and Waluigi are being treated to round two. All three of them are bouncing around since they can’t possibly get their footing now. The only thing they can see between slamming into the floor and walls of the box are the beautiful faces of their tormentors as they argue back and forth above their heads. It’s no mystery why the spinies caught them off guard shortly after that sending them flying out of the box by the seats of their pants.

Almost on top of them the princesses haven’t noticed so it’s all the more hazardous. High heels never make for good company so now they start panicking. Mario does all sorts of jumps, slides and rolls to avoid compression. Waluigi took the opposite approach and took one leap of faith and snagged the hem of Daisy’s dress. From there he’s clinging for his life swinging to and fro. Toad is having a classic panic attack. He’s running as fast as he can with his hands in the air. He goes eight steps one way-SLAM! Peach’s shiny red high heeled foot blocks his path. He turns around another direction running faster with renewed alarm-SLAM! It happens again, light blue shoes in the way this time. Of course it only adds fuel to his terror and he’s off like a shot wailing like a siren-SLAM!

Wario and Bowser Kid wander around looking for Twila and Brighton.

“Stupid sun and moon…” Bowser kid sulks. “Why’d they have to go an’ argue? If my dad-”

“If your dad what?” Wario snaps, since this is all the kid talks about. “Was here? Was the sun and moon? Well I got news for you kid, he ain’t!”

“But if he was-”

“He’d be slowing us down stomping around everywhere and if he was the substitutes for good buddies mr. Shine and mr. Bright we’d have to call in the short guy to set him straight.” Wario laughs evilly. “What a wuss!”

“He is NOT a wuss!”

“What else do you call somebody that little Mario tosses around?”

“I bet my dad could beat you up!”

“If Mario can do it, Wario can do it twice as fast! I work out and I’ve got these!” Wario pulls out a bob-bomb then lobs it into the countryside. The blast makes the ground shake and leaves a flash that blinds the koopa child. “I love doing that!”

“Well it takes more than firecrackers to bring Dad down!” Bowser kid says rubbing his eyes.

“You can tell him to bring it on!”

“You’ll be sorry you said that!”

Now they’re arguing. Wario claims that he can beat Bowser and Mario anytime and anyplace while Bowser’s son claims pops would squash him flat and Mario is invincible. They are getting pretty vocal now so they can’t hear Twila and Brighton quarrelling overhead. But they do notice when the sky keeps changing from dawn to dusk like a light bulb on the fritz.

“I could take ‘em both with one arm tied behind my back!”

“He’d toast you crispy with his eyes closed in – hey, what’s with the sky?”

Wario looks up. “That’s them.” He affirms.

“How’re we gonna get they’re attention with them way up there?”

“I got just the thing.” Wario grins fiendishly.

On the stage Peach and Daisy are still bickering.

“Let go!” Peach yells.

“No!” Daisy whines. “Come on…”

“This is too silly!” Toadette thinks to herself. “But enough’s enough.” She has a sore throat from laughing so much but with effort manages to stop long enough to sit up and open her eyes. “I don’t remember that…”

Mario is making his best attempt as only a master platformer can do to save his life by bounding around haphazardly. Waluigi looks sick hanging off the edge of Daisy’s dress and seems ready to pass out. As for Toad, he’s cringing in dread beneath the arch of one of Peach’s shoes. Toadette is just about to discount it as an illusion or flight of fancy when she remembers the box.

“FREEZE!” The midget mauve mushroom screeches at the top of her lungs, getting to her feet.

Both ladies look puzzled. Their expressions bespeak of bewilderment as they are stunned by the outburst. They act to step in her direction to find out what’s wrong.

“STOP!” Toadette yells rushing toward them. “DON’T!”

“What’s the matter?” Daisy asks unable to fathom why Toadette would pull at her dress.

“Look in the box.” Toadette replies, scooping up Mario.

Together the princesses look in the package. Finding no occupants within gets a gasp from them both as they come to a conclusion simultaneously.


“I thought-”

“Lift your foot please.” Toadette requests.

Peach looks around behind her before stepping back slowly. “I didn’t…” She thinks to herself. Toad, flat on the floor is what she finds where her foot formerly rested. At that sight she falls backwards and hits the floor with an unceremonious thump, having fainted dead away.

“Wake her up!” Toadette’s scratchy voice demands.

“She’s still out cold…” Daisy replies. “There’s nothing I can do.”

“I don’t care! She’s got something coming and I need her awake! Shake her or something!”

“Peach, wake up.” Daisy says gently shaking the princess. “Wake up.”

“Hm? What is it?” Peach asks sitting up. “How long was I out?”

“A couple minutes. Are you alright? You look like you got a nasty bump.”

Peach rubs her head. “I’ll be alright.”

“Well I won’t!” Toadette declares.

“What’s wrong?” Peach asks. Daisy shakes her head. Mario and Waluigi on her shoulders do the same.

“You don’t remember what you did to Toad?” Toadette sounds incredulous.

“What I did to…” Peach appears clueless. Then her face falls. “Oh.” The image of flat Toad returning to her memory.

“That’s all you can say is ‘oh.’? That makes me so mad…let’s see how you like it!”

Peach looks up befuddled just in time to be sucked into the box. “Aiieeee!” Inside the box she’s surrounded by spinies. “They aren’t supposed to be this tall…” To her it was a rather serious revelation as they loomed menacingly over her. As one of the taller people around it was new and didn’t hold much novelty for her, especially considering the gravity of the situation. Without warning the floor began to shudder and tilt. Even with her impressive jump abilities she could barely clear them. It wasn’t long before she rocketed from the box after contact with a shell.

“Looks like you lost.” Toadette says from overhead. “Daisy if you would please?”

“Hasn’t she had enough?” The foreign princess asks. “I don’t think-”

“Get real! Do you suppose Toad had enough?”

Daisy nods sadly. “Sorry.” She says to the miniature monarch stepping high and stomping down hard. Peach barely gets out of the way.

“Daisy please!” Peach pleads but the foot hovers above her again and she narrowly runs out of harm’s way before it slams into where she was. “Why?” She moans on the retreat.

Now Peach is running for her life. Every time it looks like she’s about to escape an azure shoe crashes down just in front of her and she has to stop short to avoid becoming mush. All the while Toadette glares angrily yelling “how do YOU like it?”

“Why?” Peach wonders again stopping short not quite in time. “She brushed my nose…” She turns to flee yet again. “Daisy stop!” She calls out as loud as she can trying to get her would-be executioner’s attention. She doesn’t respond and Peach collides with her foot blocking her way again, falling on her behind. “Please!”

Her voice seems to reach the Sarasaland emissary but Toadette shakes her head. Daisy gazes down at Peach and shrugs as though it’s out of her hands and raises her foot.

“No…” But her voice doesn’t stop the sky blue sole above her as it hurtles toward her like a renegade piece of atmosphere. “Aaaahhh!” A resounding crack silences the room.

“Scary huh?” Toadette says smugly.

“What?” It occurs to Peach that she’s still alive. She moves her hands from in front of her face and finds that she is beneath the archway of the shoe. She quakes realizing how close she had come to death.

“Just when you think it can’t be worse and you’re too scared to move-BAM!” Toadette states.

“I’m so-” Peach begins but is cut off.

“You’re a smear mark.” The pink toad concludes.

“It’s okay.” Mario says voice coming from afar atop Daisy’s shoulder. “It’s fine!”

“It’s not okay, I’m sorry!”

“You can’t be sorry enough!”

“You did nothing wrong! It’s okay!” Mario says consolingly.

“No really, I’m sorry!”

“That doesn’t matter.” Daisy’s foot rises.

“Please don’t!” Peach implores. To no avail as the feminine footwear descends toward her with grim finality. She throws her hands up to shield herself futilely.

“WAKE UP!” Mario commands imperatively.

Peach’s eyes snap open. “I didn’t mean it!” She says to the ceiling.

“It’s alright. You didn’t do anything, nobody’s hurt.” Mario reassures her.

“Really?” She sounds relieved.

“Everything’s okey dokey!” Mario says brightly touching her cheek.

“Except…” Peach turns her head to look at three inch tall Mario.

“I said it’s okey dokey!” Mario insists with his signature mustache grin.

“Whatever you say.” Peach smiles back and sits up. “Looks like they’re having fun…” She says looking around.

Daisy’s got Waluigi’s hat and is holding it out of reach. She’s getting a kick out of making him jump for it then snatching it just a hair from his grasp.

“SOMEBODY’s having fun.” Mario corrects. Peach giggles at his choice of words then glances at Toadette.

She’s got Toad in her hands and is mumbling in his ear and rubbing his head trying to calm him down. Even from where Peach is sitting she can see he’s still pretty shaken up.

“I scared him pretty bad didn’t I?” Peach says softly.

Mario nods. “You didn’t mean to but things like that happen. It’s not your fault.”

“Thanks for saying that.” Peach says looking down at him. “I feel a bit better.”

“What’s a friend for?”

“I could kiss you for that.” She smiles. “Matter of fact…” She reaches for him.

“Huh?” Mario must not have been paying attention. So when her fingers wrap around his body he’s a bit surprised. “What-” But it’s too late. Peach plants one on him that leaves lipstick al over his face and overalls. “Momma Mia!”

“You’re welcome!” Peach giggles as Mario looks around dazedly, absently fondling him all the while. Not even when Waluigi gets fed up with Daisy and her pastime tossing a bob-bomb her way does he even blink. When she counters by flinging the black cap with the upside down “L” across the stage he pays no heed either. He doesn’t even notice when Twila and Brighton arrive blackened and smoky ushered in by Wario and Bowser Kid.

Brighton walks over to the box. “Hmm…no one inside. That makes Peach the winner!” He awards her the ten coins and doesn’t get any protest out of the actual winners who are preoccupied at the time so with a wave of his hand he returns them all to the board.

“Now for a game of “Odd Card Out!” Twila says enthusiastically to his less than pleased participants.

Back on the board the first group continues their game. It’s Peach’s turn so she hits the dice block.

“Eight!” She exclaims. “I’m going to get the star!” She passes Mario. “Better luck next time!” She taunts.

Mario says nothing. He just winks and smiles with his entire front still covered in her lipstick.