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Epoch Glide - Virtual Grape Gardens

Epoch Glide

A Shameless Chrono Trigger Parody
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

The widest path out of the clearing she was in actually led to a river and a cliff. At the edge of the cliff, Beatrix was able to see the familiar shape of Truce and Guardia Castle in the distance.

THe path besides the cliff moved across the river and down several hills, and back over the river once more. Along the path had a bunch of other imps lingering around.

Of course, this isn't a game, so it's not like you're actually restricted by invisible walls.
Beatrix furrowed her brow as she looked toward Guardia Castle and then to Truce. Strange. She couldn't quite figure out where she was. She wondered where the square was, but it didn't matter too much.

After a bit of a trip and several imps downed and defeated, Beatrix stumbled into Truce and began looking around. Things looked different. Some of the buildings were the same, but quite a few were missing. Eventually she moved toward a pub -- that she didn't even know existed until now -- and stepped inside, hoping that Kirby might've come here.

She looked horribly lost and quite confused, but she managed to move to the bar to ask the bartender a few questions.

Beatrix: "Hey! Heeeeeeeey! This is Truce, right?"
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

The bartender raised an eyebrow as he continued to clean a mug.

Bartender: Why, yes, this is Truce.

Several patrons of the pub began to eye Beatrix. Her clothes did not really fit with the style the others wore.
Beatrix: "I see... uhm... what happened to the festival? Did it get canceled? Actually... the entire square seems to be missing. Has something happened?"

She tried to ignore the eyes that fell on her as best she could.
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

The bartender put up a face that almost seemed as if Beatrix had spat on him.

Beatrix: Festival? What the hell are you talking about? There's a war with that Fiendlord going on. We can't have any festivals while this war is going on!
Beatrix stopped dead. Her eyes widened. Fiendlord? -The- Fiendlord? That was like four hundred years ago! She looked around the bar before looking at the bartender.

Beatrix: "Have you seen a... a weird boy walking around probably not knowing where he was and asking stupid things like me?"
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

Bartender: Weird, I have seen. Asking stupid things like you? No. Most people who come here want to wind down and forget about stupid things, like this war.

One patron raised his glass.

Patron: I'm here to celebrate. Queen Alicia has been found!

The others in the pub fell quiet upon hearing the man's statement. Another patron spoke up.

Another Patron: What? Really? Where was she?

Patron: You'll never guess it. She was found at Truce Canyon.

Another Patron: Is that so? Haha, and to think, there was word that bell named after her was going to be put up nearby there.
Beatrix looked between the patrons and nodded. The queen had been found where she had come from. Maybe she had met Kirby? What was her hope of actually meeting the queen, though. She might at least take a question. If not, Beatrix could probably sneak into the castle! That couldn't be that hard, right?

She slowly nodded and took a step back away from the bar before turning and walking out the door. What was she doing? Did she really have any hope of finding Kirby? Still, if that was Truce Canyon and it was by the bell, certainly they had at least seen Kirby too.

She decided it was best to head to the castle. It might be a waste of time, but it wasn't like it was particularly far away.
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

On the way to the path of the castle, Beatrix noticed something else was off. There were nothing but trees instead of what should have been a cleared out path lined with torches. It was clear that the path she was on led to the castle due to the worn out ground.
Beatrix couldn't help but feel everything was off! Even the world somehow looked darker and muddier, as if everything had changed. The air felt different, the ground felt different, even the world felt different. She frowned a little as she made her way forward toward the castle. It didn't take her too long to wind up in front of the castle, she stepped in just to be met by two very large men.

Beatrix: "Uh... hi... I was hoping to see the queen?"
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

The guards looked at Beatrix, then at each other very briefly before looking back at her.

Guard: The Queen had just returned from a horrible ordeal.

The Other Guard: We are going to ask you to leave. Now is not a good time for visitors, either.

???: Please, stand down, men.

The guards panicked as they heard a voice speaking behind them, a few steps up the stairs they were standing in front of.

The Other Guard: Q-Queen Alicia..!

He turned and kneeled. The woman standing at the top of the short flight of stairs held out a gloved hand, signaling to the guard that he should relax.

Queen Alicia: Please let the rest of the castle know that this young woman is a guest.

Guard: A guest, your Majesty?

Queen Alicia: Yes. Miss Beatrix was the one who saved me, you see.

The Other Guard: Oh!

The two guards turned and bowed to Beatrix.

Guards: Thank you for saving the Queen!
Beatrix stared up at the queen. She looked familiar, but she couldn't quite place it. As the two guards thanked her, she nodded.

Beatrix: "No problem, just... being a loyal citizen."

She looked up at the queen, pure confusion on her face, but she stepped past the guards and started walking up the steps.

"Uhm, your majesty, I wanted to ask you about something."

She was about to blurb the entire ordeal before she looked back to the guards.

"Maybe in private?"
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

Queen Alicia: I still feel exhausted from the ordeal, so I will return to my quarters. However, you are free to see me whenever you like.

The queen nodded before turning around, and walking towards the central doors.

Guard: ... I.. I will let the others know.

The Other Guard: As will I. Miss Beatrix, you are free to use the resting quarters and the kitchen.
Beatrix looked toward the guards and smiled.

Beatrix: "Thank you very much! I'm sure I'll get right to that after I visit the queen."

She moved after the queen, but she was already ascending the stairs before Beatrix had even caught a glimpse of her. Beatrix sighed. She had no idea the queen would be so... so beautiful! Those round eyes, the way that dress made her curves so delightfully subtle, the way that gloved hand moved. She was in heaven imagining being in the queen's room, let alone actually getting to visit it for real!

She shook the clouds out of her head and chased after the queen, arriving in her room just a few minutes after her. She had gotten lost on the way and stumbled into a store room of some sort which had delayed her.

"Queen Alicia!"

She knocked on the door.
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

A handmaid opened the set of double doors.

Queen Alicia: Yes, that is her.

The queen stood by a window, and turned her gaze outside.

Queen Alicia: If you please, I would like to speak with her privately.

Handmaid: Yes, your majesty.

The handmaid stepped aside to allow Beatrix in before heading out of the room and closing the doors.

Queen Alicia: You have come so far..
Beatrix couldn't stop the praise from practically leaping from her mouth.

Beatrix: "Queen Alicia! You're so beautiful! I never could've guessed that you would be so pretty!"

She was like a ten year old all over again.

"And so refined too! Just, everything about you!"

She sighed very deeply.

"Uhm... how do you know my name, anyways?"
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

The queen's head dipped as her shoulders jutted upward, as if she had been caught with her hand in a cookie jar.

Queen Alicia: Well.. you see... that is to say..

She slowly turned her head around, and pulled away her fan.

Queen Alicia: That would be because I am Kirby.

The pitch in the "queen's" voice had slightly lowered.
Beatrix: "You're..."

She paused and did a double take. Even then, it took a solid ten seconds for it to finally sink into her head. Her face turned bright red. She immediately turned around and tried to deal with the conflicting emotions of joy that Kirby was alive, embarrassment for being quite attracted to Kirby while he was wearing a dress, and jealousy.

She eventually turned around and wrinkled her nose.

"Do you really have to wear a dress better than me!?"
The Jarl of Neo Grape Gardens

Kirby: U-Uh...

Kirby's face started to glow red.

Kirby: This is not exactly comfortable..
Beatrix: "You think! You're even wearing a corset! I'd kill to have a corset that fit properly! Look at you, it makes you look like you have breasts! And an ass!"

She kept fuming a little before she finally stopped herself for a second before one final outburst.

"Can't believe you're more beautiful than me!"
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