The Gundam Beauty Pageant|
by Charon the Sabercat
Another dressing room scene, nothing to exciting. ZERO WILL HAVE A SUBPLOT, I feel I have to mention that, because his is a little late. But Zero got most of "The Power of Music and Other Things"! That counts for something! Zapper's gonna get one too, but I can't think of one for Sazabi and Gunpanzer...
It's time to pick the Most Talented Gundams! Well, it's almost time to, anyway.
Chapter 17 - Chapter 18 - Chapter 19
The Gundam Beauty Pageant|
18. Preparing for the Contest
Charon rounded up the Gundams in each dressing room. "Okay, guys, it's time for the Most Talented competition, where you will be judged on number of talents and how good you are at them. For-
In the Dark Axis room, Charon was rudely interrupted by Grappler. "Hey, wait a minute! I remember you saying we were gonna stay in a hotel! What happened?!"
"Yeah, organic!" snapped Killer, standing proudly behind Grappler. "Explain!"
Charon sighed. "I'm sorry, guys, but since this fic got the summer premier instead of the winter one I planned, your hotel kind of... melted."
"We were gonna stay at this hotel in Sweden that they carve out of ice every year. Everything's made of ice, it's so cool!" She shook herself back into reality. "Sorry. But anyway, it's melted by now, so I wound up having to write everything in last night."
Zapper's lip curled, the equivalent to him cocking an eyebrow. "Write?"
Charon growled. The fourth wall had been reduced to rubble by now. "You're in a fanfiction, remember? This all came out of my head and onto the Dell. This whole building and everything outside is my imagination."
A lightbulb went off somewhere in Sazabi's head (literally). "Outside! I didn't know we had an outside!"
He ran to a nearby window and tore down the blinds-
Outside was an endless, totally flat plain of green grass, paired with a cloudless, blank blue sky. Sazabi lurched back from the window, covering his eye. "Gah! It hurts!"
Charon calmly stepped to the window and frowned disapprovingly. "Yeah, I never intended you guys to go outside, so I didn't put much effort into it. I should probably add some trees... maybe a pool." She "hmm"ed thoughtfully. "Or a sandbox."
"Anyway, for this round, it was a little hard to pick, because I conferred with the fans earlier, and they all kinda voted for the same two people, but I talked to them again, and this is what we're gonna do."
"For Neotopia, Gundiver 1. Talents include being able to swim, tranformation, and excellent intuition with the other Gundivers."
Gundiver nearly fell out of his chair. "WHAT?!"
Guneagle echoed. "WHAT?!"
Charon's hand shot to her hip. "How many Gundams do you know that can swim?"
Captain raised his hand. "Seven."
Laughter erupted from Charon's gut. "He didn't even miss a beat!" She clapped proudly, making the other Gundams sweat uncomfortably.
Gundiver was slapped on the back by Gunpanzer, throwing him onto the floor. "Good goin' there, buckaroo!"
Guneagle crossed his arms and turned his head away. "It's only cause he can swim."
Maxine stepped a little closer to Gundiver. "Hmm... athletic... I like the sound of that."
Gundiver raised his hands protectively. "Um... thank you, bu- um..."
He bumped into something big, and he dove behind it; it was Captain. Captain raised his hand, waving them away. "Leave him alone, he's nervous."
Gunpanzer also crossed his arms. "We were just congradulatin' the pansy!"
Captain stepped back, covering the cowering Gundiver. "Well, you're not helping, so leave him alone."
Gunpanzer walked away in a huff. Guneagle grabbed Maxine, who blew Gundiver a kiss and winked at him, and stormed off.
Gundiver gulped. Captain turned to his friend. "You'll have to get used to that, Gundiver."
"But I don't want to!" Gundiver clutched Captain's arm like a child.
"For Lacroa, Zero. Talents include flight, summon beast...ing, the ability to summon random items, and a wide variety of spells."
Zero jumped into the air, arms and legs spread. "Yes! That's two for me, Deathscythe!"
Deathscythe laughed lightly, picking up on the playful threat. "There's still two to go. Three out of two wins dinner with the Princess."
Zero let loose a triumphant "HA! You're on, Deathscythe!"
Charon tapped Zero's shoulder. "Uh, Zero?" She pointed below him. Zero looked down.
Talgeese was lying on the floor, his head situated between Zero's legs. "Uh... hi?"
Zero dove straight down, smashing his feet into Talgeese's face. He then floated calmly away like a butterfly, leaving a flattened Talgeese on the ground. Charon shook her head. Talgeese gurgled, "It was worth it."
Deathscythe gave him a kick for good measure.
"For Ark, Cobramaru. Talents include invisibilty, wall climbing, and general flexibility- no one is allowed to make a joke!"
Hoshiko crossed her arms. "Damn."
She and Cobramaru shared a knowing look and a laugh. Bakunetsumaru and Aneko fumed. Hanako moaned, dissapointed.
"She promised..." Baku growled. "She promised..."
"I know..." Aneko held her brother's hand tightly; if she let go, she knew she would loose control. "I know, but she's also our sister... we can kill Cobramaru, just not her."
Hanako patted Aneko's shoulders. "Keep calm, now."
"For the Dark Axis, Madnug. Talents incluse strength, agility, intelligence, and skills with a rifle."
The Dark Axis cheered for their Gundam ally, who held his hands up and gloated like a celebrity. "Please, please, hold your cheers until I've won."
Charon snickered to herself. "Basically, he gets it for being Captain-"
"I HEARD THAT!"
Charon ran before they could pull the guns out. Madnug tossed his head proudly. "I am nothing like that sell-out!"
"Duh..." Dom raised a finger. "But Lord Madnug, you his twin."
Grappler leaned in close to the shocked-speechless Madnug. "You know, I'd never cared before, but there's a resemblance there."
Sazabi rolled his eyes. "You idiots! He pratically IS Captain Gundam, he's just painted black!"
"I was dye-cast black, thank you very much!" Madnug knew that was a lie (he actually was just painted black) but wouldn't admit it.
Thankfully, or maybe not, everyone else knew it was a lie. Zapper growled sternly, "Listen, you, you can't order us around now that you're supposed to be dead. You're Neotopian, and there's no denying it!"
Madnug was fuming, steam erupting from the crevices in his body. "I Am Not!"
Sazabi shook his head, a wizened expression settling on his face. "Quiet."
The room was quiet; something in Sazabi's voice quelled the fury in their bodies, and they all leaned in to listen.
"No one is questioning your loyalty to the Dark Axis, Madnug. Your intelligence has proven itself time and time again. But you cannot deny the Neotopian oil that pumps through your tubing."
Charon clapped. "I admire your sagacity, Sazabi."
A question mark popped out of his ear. "What?"
"And there it goes."
"Okay, everybody knows the rules! Grab a girl, go to the dressing room! Move, move, move!"
Cobramaru leaned back into Hoshiko's chest, kissing her neck and secretly writing the next symbol of his name on her. "Why do birds..." he sang, "Suddenly appear..."
She swooned and nearly fell, weak at the knees. She grabbed the washr-
"Shimatta, I forgot the polish." She stroked his chin, making him purr. "I'll be back."
She left quickly; Cobramaru turned around in her chair and watched her.
Madnug shook his head. "You like her, don't you?"
"Like?" Cobra's eyes changed into little pink hearts. "I'm in love."
"Y- you're what?!" Madnug hit his ear, making sure he was hearing right. "B-but you're a ninja!"
Cobra tore his eyes away from his beloved, annoyed eyes flashing to the forefront. He hissed in a sotto voice. "And what does that have to do with anything?"
Madnug scoffed indignantly. "You're supposed to be heartless killers, that's what it has to do with anything!"
"Heartless killers, yes, but that doesn't mean we have to be heartless all the time." Cobramaru focused again on Hoshiko, the little pink hearts returning. "Hoshiko's so perfect..."
The black Gundam reeled in disgust. "Ugh.. you should hear yourself..." A devious flash crossed his face. "Or maybe she should hear about the other women you've been in love with..."
"I was never in love with them. Besides, she knows."
"You told her?"
"She asked me!" The hearts grew larger, turned red, and began to pound heavily. "We think exactly the same way! It's like we were programmed for eachother!"
Hoshiko arrived back at the chair about that time; Cobramaru grabbed her and pulled her into the chair with him, kissing her deeply and writing another symbol on her neck. Madnug sighed and rubbed his temple. "No wonder Kibaomaru fired this dude..."
Gundiver, a little uneasy around Maxine, preferred having Juli apply his polish. He fidgeted, twiddling his thumbs and kicking his legs.
He sat next to Zero, who was a little too entranced to concentrate on anything other than the wench's fingers.
Captain knelt beside Gundiver's chair. Gundiver jumped, but settled when he saw his commanding officer. "Hey, Captain. What's up?"
Captain shrugged. "I was lonely. They only talk about you in the room."
Gundiver rolled his eyes. "It's just like when you were out."
"Oh, totally." Gundiver began to loosen up, allowing Juli to polish him without too many obstacles. "All while you were gone, it was 'Captain, CaptainCaptainCaptainCaptain', but the second you lost, it got all quiet."
The spirit seemed to leave Captain, and he sank onto his bottom and leaned against Gundiver's leg. The blue Gundam felt a little guilty about upsetting his friend. "I'm sorry, Captain."
"I thought they were my friends, Gundiver."
"They are," Gundiver pleaded.
Juli couldn't take it. "I'm sorry, Captain, but sometimes people are only your friends when it's convinient for them. Sometimes, they don't even realize they're doing it. You can't take it personally."
It didn't seem to help. Captain was still unresponsive, staring blankly at the mirror. Juli rubbed Captain's shoulder. "I'm sorry, dear."
"It's okay..." Captain stood up, stumbling once in a depressed stagger. "I'm going back, now."
Captain began the trudge back to the Neotopia dressing room, knowing he was in for hours of being ignored by his only family. As he approached the door, however, he went to give Gundiver one last wave goodbye. What he saw, however, was Madnug.
Guilt stabbed his soul drive, as well as the painful memories of not only being drunk, but the resulting hangover. Captain flinched and clutched his chest (no one noticed). Knowing their was only one thing to do, Captain silently walked towards Madnug's chair.
Madnug was waiting impatiently for the show to begin (his Dark Axis stylist had finished much earlier than the others), tapping his fingers on the armrest and twisting uncomfortingly in the chair. One of those twists resulted in him seeing Captain standing beside him. He immediately noticed the guilty posture; he snapped to the offensive. "Get away from me, meatbag lover!"
Captain was visibly stunned, his eyes flashing nervously. "I just came to apologize-"
"And I just told you leave!" Madnug pulled out a handgun (a beam rifle the size of a person's head, but a handgun to the Gundams). "So leave!"
A shuffling behind the door made them stop. "Oh no- I'm gonna faaaaaaaallll-"
Talgeese tumbled through the door, running straight for Zero. Zero didn't even open his eyes, just snapped his fingers-
And Talgeese was stuck in a bear trap. Rele gasped. "Zero, what did you do?!"
Zero layed back in the chair. "Punished him."
Talgeese growled. "That wasn't worth it! Didn't even get a nipple-"
Snap! A second bear trap.