by Pierson

Chapter 1: The Beginning, stupid.

Call me Ishmael
Call me Jeff
It was a dark and stormy night
Once upon a time
And so it came to pass, in a year that doesn't really matter at this particular point, that a young boy of great expectations conquests stuff, but of little authoring skills, set out from his fair gloom village on a quest. Words had been flying through the air of riches to be won and stats to be heightened to soaring levels in the mystical land beyond the chilly mountains of That Place We Can't Pronounce Because It's Spelled Stupidly.

Verily, twas a bright morning, the birds were mellowing in the sunlight, and all was right with the world. Climbing to the top of the nearest hill, he looked down upon the grassy plains that would no doubt form the greater part of his quest. What with the greenness, and all. Y'know.
"Christ, my feet doth hurt," quothed the brave-ish warrior, for the hill was tall and his shoes cheap and nasty. They had been discounted though, and so he had no reason to complain.

And so, armed with his Stick of Sharpness and his Plastic Shield, the youth did depart on, heading for the mystical lands beyond the chilly peaks of TPWCPBISS. Maybe he should have packed more socks.

And verily, verily, verily, verily, life was but a dream he didst meet an old man upon the bleak cobbled roads on the way to thenext village; Boomtown, The Town What Does Not Sleep.
"Hail, young man, I am but a crippled begger, and not a Mysterious Old Tricker, as is usually the way of things. Honest." the old one delceared. And Jeff did ignore him, being well-versed in how these things go, and so walked on.
"Get back here, you little bastard, or I'll smack you in the balls when you sleep," the old one quoth, and thrice more before Jeff didst look upon him again.
"Aye, what dost though want, ye old codger," Jess decreed, keeping his sharp stick in his hand.
"Verily, tis a quest!" the man declared, and pointed to yonder hills. The ones in the distance. "I am but a poor man, for my gold has been stolen by my bitch of a wife."
"Ah! She put a spell upon thee!" Jess declared, being well-versed in how these things go as well.
"No, divorce. Bastard lawyers," the old man corrected, and Jeff was humbled. "If thou canst defeat my wife and reclaim my gold, I can show ye the way through the mountains of TPWCPBISS!"
Jess gasped. "Gasp! But how didst thou know I was heading for the peaks of TPWCPBISS!?" Jess asked.
"Ye have packed many socks. Not enough thou, I warrent ye."
"Oh. Right."
And so Jeff set off to reclaim honour, gold, and smite the unscrupulous wife and her bastard lawyers. Twas a not-so-mighty quest, to be sure, but twas the stupidest first step on his way of stat enlargement, on his great Quest for Progress.

End of chapter 1

As you can guess, I'm doing a fic on the best MMORPG EVAR. :P Tell me what you think.

Leave your name, race, and preferred weaponry and I'll shove you in at some point. Participants must be prepared to use Ye Olde Englishe phrases. You have been warned.

Progress Quest. The RPG where you it back and watch.
Also check MT's thread on it. ^_^


And so dids't the brave lad Jeff forge ahead on his quest 'gainst the bastard lawyers and the wife of the old man, and not for the first time wondering why he hadst agreed to undertake this task with simple words of wisdom;
"Note to self; you suck."
When lo! A mightly demon dids't jump from behind a rock, and dids't confront Jeff on te lofty track to yonder hilltop home of the Bastard Lawyers.
And Jeff didst stop dead and declare himself to the demon.
"Aw, crap."
And quothing such, Jeff dids't turn and leg it.
But lo! For another demon jumped upon him from hiding! Demons to the left of him, demons to the right of him, and penguins demons behind!

And for the third time lo! As a handily placed bush dids't shake and rattle, and from it's leafy depths dids'tids'tids't did a figure jump from it and land to the left of Jeff! And Jeff was pleased.
"What ho Jeff! If thou wouldn't take on many demons at once, thou art royally screwed!" declared the unnamed and undescribed warrior. And saying thus the warrior reached for his belt and drew his weapon, and turned to smite the lefternmost demon upon the head! And said demon did die a gruesome death.
"Verily, I smote him mightily!" quothed the warrior of bravery. Turning to Jeff, he quothethethed; "Jeff! You stupid bastard! With ought but a stick with whihc to smite thine enemies! Have this!"
And he handed Jeff a sword, and Jeff dids't grab it, and then did fall down, quothing; "Yaarg. 'Tis a heavy bugger and no mistaking it! But I woulds't know thou name?"
"No time for that!" the warrior spake, and having spaken turned and pointed at yonder hill house, which had turned out to a condo. Blue, with electrical heating. "Go and smite yonder bastard lawyers we must! Yonder! To the condo! Blue, with electrical heating!" he cried, and charged up the hill.
Jeff, being a wiser Jeff than before, waited at the bottom, as the warrior became tired, and fell back down again. "Now who's a stupid bastard! Nar nar ee nar nar!" and so forth, until nameless warrior did clip him upon the head.
"Silence! We must charge yonder hill, lest they see us coming!"
"But they're already there. They're waving at us. Look," Jeff quoth, and both turned, and saw the truth of his words, for upon yonder hill stood a man, waving, in black.
"Sod," the warrior delcared. "Then we must smite him! For truth! and honour! and American cheesecake!"
"Verily, we must," jeff said, hefting his recently-donated sword. "We mist smite him, for all them things what you just said!
"Yaaar!" quothed the warrior.
"Yaaar!" quothed Jeff, and they dids't charge up the hill with much noise, and many rests in between, for twas a tall hill, and the warriors armour was bloody heavy.

"Greetings, thou warriors of truth, etc etc," the Man in Black hailed, as jeff and the warrior finally mounted the summit of hill, and beheld the condo. Blue, with electrical heating. "Hast thou been sent by yonder old man, who sits at the bottom of this very hill, waiting for his money to be returned?"
"Aye!" quothed the warriors.
"Then I shalt sue thee! For I am a lawyer!"
"A lawyer for truth, honour, and American cheesecake?"
"Nay! A lawyer for money!"
Jeff and his companion dids't shrug, and lifting their weapons did smite the bastard lawyer upon the head with great relish and heaviness.
"Ow," declared the lawyer, and he dids't fall, being well smoten.
"Hurrah!" delcared Jeff.
"Hurrah!" delcared the unnamed warrior. "And now! to reclaim the precious'es of this householf in the name of that old man at the bottom of the hill!"
And the two dids't move into the house, whereupon Jeff was smoten my a vase thrown by the angry wife. But showing fortitude he pushed her aside, did gather all precious'es in a hady and heretofore unmentioned sack, and dids't exit the condo. Blue, with electrical heating.

"You have reutnred my gold!" the dold man quoth, praising Jeff. "Now thou shalt be rewarded! With the stats thou art craving!" And he did wave his hand sin a vaguely mystical manner, and jeff's stats did improve.
"Oy," quoth the mysterious warrior. "I helped."
"Sod off. I nay have enough stats for two."
And the warrior dids't turn to Jeff. "I say we smite him and take his gold!"
"Aye!" declared Jeff, and the two dids't smite the man upon the head.
"Ow," said he, and fell.
"And now to pawn these precious'es whenst we get to Boomtown, The Town What Does Not Sleep!" quothed the warrior.
"Aye! Answer me this though!"
"How dids't thou know I was helping that old man. Or even know who the old man was?"
And the warrior dids't look mysterious. "Do not ask stupid questions, lest you be smoten!" he declared.
And Jeff was satisfied.

End of chapter 2

Next time on Progress Quest! Will Jef discover the name of yonder warrior?* Will this fic start to have a plot?** Wll the author bother to write something meaningful?***

*Yes, when someone gets cast.
***The hell he will.

Chapter 3: The Third Chapter

And so Jeff and the warrior who Seeked Mabats (for Mabatseeker was his name), the Halfcat from the North, dids't reach the Town What Does Not Sleep, Boomtown. And they stoodst looking upon the bleak and bleary scenery.
"We shoulds't find an inn to rest," Jeff did say, being dog-tired. And so the warriors did wonder around for a few hours, having their pockets picked more than once, and they did complain, having their precious gold stole from their belts.

And so the brave-ish warriors did come across the inn of the Twon of Boom, and looking up at it, Mabat did quoth:
"Verily, what a dump."
Whereupon jeff dids't wisely say that beggers could not, indeed, be choosers, and so they dids't enter, and sat themselves upon the barstool.
"Wench! Fetch us some mead!" Jeff delcared, and said wench dids't turn and smite him upon the hed with a tankard.
And Mabat did look from Jeff to the wench, and from the wench to Jeff, and from Jeff to the wench again, and dids't declare;
"He's not with me."
And the wench, being convinced, fetched Mabat his mead, and Mabat did drink and was content.

And jeff did regain consciousness much later, and sat up. "What in Odin's name hath taken place here?"
"Thou were smoten mightily by yonder wen- woman, and hath been on the floor since last night. People have been using you as a carpet.
And Jeff did look down, and did see his clothing was muddy. "Bastards! They hast dirtied mine armour-"
"It's cotton armour."
"They hast dirtied mine cotton!" And having spoken he stood. "We must catch yonder villains and smite them with our sticks!"
"It's a hammer."
"Thou knowest damn well what I meant!" Jeff dids't declare angrily, and Mabat was humbled.
And so they bid the violent wench fairwell, and did step out into the sunlight of Boomtown, where a cart splashed mud on them.
"That," quothed Mabat, "was not a good start."

And so they dids't plod through the town, encountering many old folk, young folk, and folk who are not old yet not young, and they did ask them where they might find the customers of the Pub of last night, who had used Jeffs cotton armour (laughs) as a place to wipe their feet.

"Verily, your armour is a joke," Mabat decreed. "You must purchase some newer stuff!" And th two did head for the armourer, who conveniently lived next door to where they were standing.
"What ho, armouring-man! I am in dire need of some new armour!" Jeff decreed, pointing at his soiled cotton breastplate.
And the armourer did nod and say; "Sweet bejesus what's a crappy suit of armour!"
And the three dids't nod sagely, for his words were wise and true.
So the armour did take his measurements with his measureing measurer, and dids't retreat to his forge, and began to forge a newer armour.
And the two dids't wait, and play Nougts and Crosses on the floor.
And an hour passed.
And another.
And another
And so forth, thrice more.
Until finally the armourererer emerged, dragging a new suit of armour.
"Lo!" declared the armourer. "I have forged armour made of finest Iron! May it speed your through many an encounter with the demons of this world!"
And taking it Jeff did put on the armour, and was happy.
"And that shall be fifty gold pieces!" quothed th armour.
And looking at each other, Jeff and Mabat didst run from the armourer and his armoury, laughing as they went.
And so, the two brave warriors dids't move from Boom town, heading into the country, for Mabat had purchased supplies in a scene not previosly detailed, and the two didst continue on, on their Progres Quest.

End of chapter 3

Next time on Progress Quest! Will a plot finally appear from the mist of random stuff? Will Mabatseeker explain his past, dark or otherwise? Will they be joined by new conrades?

What do you think?

Chapter 4: Untitled

And so out two brave heroes did run from the armour and his sharp stick, being clothed in new finery and other shiny bits.
"Lo, this finery sure is shiny!" quoth Jeff.
"You already said that," Mabat dids't reply, and it was the truth.
And so the warriors did stroll through leafy den and across watery brooks, heading still for the mountains of TPWCPBISS. And they did come across many demons and monsters, which they smite upon the had with Mabat's Big Ass Hammer and poke with Jeff's sharp stick.
When lo! Yet another random monster did leap from the trees ahead of them!
"YAR!" declared the monster, for twas a big monster, and fell of fiery vemon.
"Strewth!" Jeff dids't declare, having nothing better to say.
"Die, mine enemy!" Mabat did say, smote him mightily. The monstr, not Jeff.
"Yaarrr!" delcared the monster in agony, and it fell to the ground, smoten with Mabat's Big Ass Hammer.
And lo! For a sword dids't fall from it's reaches, and stck between Jeff's toes, at whcih he did shriek like a girl. "Eek!" But seeing it twas only a sword he did pick it up. Verily, it was a shiney sword, with writing upon it in some Ancient script from beyond th dawn of time.
"Alas! I cannot read this!" Jeff did declare, and beat the ground with his fist.
And so did Mabat pick up the sword, held it aloft, and read; "Tis a +4 Stabbity Longsword!"
"Gasp!" Jeff gasped, "For how can you read such a language?"
"Simple. I am the one person in this world who can unite the races of this world into harmony. Thus with my faith in this goal, nothing is hidden from me. Simpe, see?"
And thus did Mabat hand the sword to jeff. "For with my Big Ass Hammer I have no need of such a thing. Now onwards! To the mountains of TPWCPBISS!"
And as they walked Jeff dids't question his comrade's abilities. "Verily, what abailities might you posses?"
"It is well you should ask, for I can call down Lightning from the sky to smite mine enemies, heal the sick and the wounded, and can delfect the most powerful magics with a but a wave of mine hand."
"Well, so long as that hand has a big shield on it."
"I also know how to dance." And dropping his Big Ass Hammer, he danced a merry jig upon the ground.
"verily you art a man of many talents. But why are you wandering arounf aimlessly?" Jeff did ask. "Should thou not be off saving royalty from demons and such, as heroes are wont to do?
"Verily, but I hit my head on a low-hanging tree. I do not remember my purpose. I have amnesia, and forgot everything."
"You remembered what anmesia was."
"I forgot how I remembered that."
"Verily, tis a grim ailment-"
But wait!
"But wait! By an amazing coincidence your insane ramblings have told me what mine purpose was! I was rescuing the King from the dreaded Bacon Elementals when I hit my head!" And he clapped Jeff on the back. "Verily, thine idioticness has been a boon to us! For the King owns the one objec that may help me unite all races!"
"And what may this object be?" Jeff declared in wonderment.
And Mabat did deflate. "I know not. He was kidnapped before I got a chance to ask. Curse those Bacon Elementals!"
"Then we must go and rescue the King!" Jeff shouted to the sky, and many birds fell from their nests.
"Verily, we must! To the Bacon's lair!" Mabat did decree. "For truth, and justice, and American Cheesecake!"
And so, the warriors began to head for the lair of the dreaded Bacon Elementals, as the original plot is abandoned. As they are wont to do when an author thinks of something better.
And there was much rejoicing.

End of chapter 4

Next time on Progress Quest! Will Jeff and Mabat save the King after only one episode of trying? Will Jef get a clue? Will more characters be introduced this time?

So tune in next time viewers! Same progress time, same progress channel!

I sincerely doubt it.
Yup. I'll remember this time.

There are no wimmin in this fic! We need wimmin, to be the sensible ones among the madness, as is the anime cliche! :P

Chapter 5: Fill In Later

Chapter 6: And Then Night Fell.

"Verily, all those happenings last chapter were very exciting, were they not?" Jeff did say that night.
"Verily, it was filled with many hilarites and adventures. We sure showed those dreaded helldemons from beyond time who was boss, eh what?" Mabat did agree.
"Yes! It was full of tense battles and amusing conversations!"
And so Mabat did sigh, and sit down upon the cold ground, where Jeff was now trying to light a fire with two matches. "Forsooth, would it not be easier to strike the matches upon the ground then to rub them together like that, you dumb prick?" he did ask.

Jeff did look from the matches to Mabat. "Cleverdick," he did quoth, and struck the matches on the wodden pile of wooden wood.
"Alas, many days have passed since the last chapter in the blink of an eye, and yet we are no closer to finding the Kinf whom we must save?"
"What dost thou mean, 'us'?"
"Shaddup Mr I-Don't-Know-What-Matches-Do. Verily, 'tis a forlorn night tonight." And Mabat sighed again. "We must sharpen our hammers and longswords for the coming days of woe and toil." And so he brought out his Big Ass Hammer and began to sharpen it. Not that it eneded sharpening to smack things with. "So, jeff, what are thou doing out in these cold and lonely woods?"
"Following you, idiot."
"I mean what are you doing here at all," Mabat said, narrowing his eyes, ad Jeff was placated.
"Verily, tis a long and torturous story."
"I bet it isn't."
"Alright, 'tis a short and boring one. I seek strenght and stat raisings in the land beyond the mountains of TPWCPBISS, and set out from my home with a sharp stick and cotton armour for protection. And so I set out, and was accosted by the old man whom we saw, and then you jumped from a bush."
"I am very skilled at it, and-"
And mabat did stop, for there was an unearthy rustling coming from yonder trees away from the fire, and the brave fighters did pick up there weapons, and prepare to mightily smite any foe what did emerge.
"YAAAAARG!" quothed Jeff, as a mightly beast did leap from behind him and grappled him to the floor, and set upon Jeff with a stick much like Jeff's had been.
"Ow! Gerrof!" Jeff did declare, as he was smoten upon the head.
And Mabat did save the day, by stepping in and dealing the creature a mighty thimp upon the head with his Big Ass Hammer.
"Ow," the beast did say, and fell og Jeff, who got off and prepared to stab it dead.
"But wait!" Mabat did say, seizing Jeff's arm. "For I warrent this is no normal beast!"
"But it hit me with a stick!"
"Silence, or be thwomped." And he did pick up said beast by the scruff of it's fur, and held it up to the firelight.
Verily, twas a terrible-looking man-beast, with blue skin and orange hair, and many claws and feathered wings behind.
"What a freak," Jeff did declare.
"Don't make me thwomp you. Speak, creature! At thou man or beast, or man-beast? Or demon or angel? Or-"
"I am a man!" declared the now-identified-as man. "Put me down, yonder oaf!"
And Mabat did drop him, whereupon he fell to the ground with a thud.
"Why dids't thou attack us in the dead of night?" Mabat did ask.
"My grandma said you'll never find out what it is if you don't attack it with a stick," the man did answer.
And Jeff was confused. "Let us smite him!"
"NO!" shouted the man. "For my violent moment has passed, and I am of no threat to you!"
"Then let us smite him anway, in case he changes his mind!"
And Jeff was thwomped.
"What is thy name, man?" Mabat did ask, putting away his hammer.
"My name is Demigod, named as some cruel jest to mock me!"
"How cruel," Mabat did say.
"Funngaha..." Jeff dids't mumble incoherently.
And suddenly Demigod did cry out and point at Mabat's Big Ass Hammer. "Verily, tis the Messenger's Hammer! Whereupon did thou find such a weapon?"
And Mabat did nod sagely. "Twas handed from my grandparents to my parents, and from they to me. I am the messenger, who will unite-"
"Yes, I know all that. And thou seek the King?" Demigod did ask.
"How does thou know such a thing?" Mabat did ask back.
"Verily, because I have been sent to find the Messenger and guide him to the King! Verily again, tis goof fortune for all! Hurrah!"
"Hurrah! Mabat did agree.
"Mmmmgfhfg," Jeff dids't mutter.
"Jeff, what has happened to thee?" Mabat did cry, picking up Jeff and smacking him about the chops.
"Verily ya bastard, you did hit me."
Mabat pondered this. "You spake truth. Verily though, I have good reason, for thou art an idiot."
Mabat did turn back. "Now! Demigod! SHow us to the King! For we have worlds to save and people to unite!"
And Demigod did agree. "Verily! But first we must find out way out of the Lost Forest, past the Bridge Guardian of Swordiness, and through the Dead Archway of Dreaded Archway-ness!"
"Nay! For such obstacles are as paper and dust, and we are the scissors and dustduster that shall vanquish them! Now onwards!"
And Demigod did lead the way, as the trio of warrriors and moron set out to find the King, and all that stuff.

End of chapter 6

Next time on Progress Quest! Will Demigod lead them safely to the King? Will interesting stuff happen? Will Jeff be any less stupid?


Chapter 7: The Lost Forest, Found

"Yarrg, can we rest for awhile, as my feet do hurt like nothing else," Jeff did declare, sitting down upon a handy rock.
"Nay, for we have great dealings to be dealth with, and demons to smite," Mabat did reply.
"But I fear they may drop off if we dost continue at this speed."
And Mabat did consider this, and counter; "Very well, for no warrior won a great battle without feet." And so the three brave warriors sat down upon rocks, and did rest awhile surrounded by sleepy flowers.
"Verily, I feel sleepy," Jeff did quote, and did collapse upon his rock.
And Demigod did jump to his feet. "Alas! We are in a field of Flower What Make You Sleep, and shall- Zzzzz." For he too had collapsed.
"Verily, I am not carrying them both," Mabat did say, and waited for whatever it was that had doubtless snared them in it's not-so-clever trap, and fell asleep as he did so.

And so Jeff, Demigod, and Mabat did find themselves wakening in a dusty dungeon, full of dust and stuff. And dust. And also tied p to the wall with chains of hardest iron.
"Alas! For we are prisoner of some depraved magician, who will use us in some foul act of the dark arts!" Demigod did say.
"Amazing!" quothed Jeff. "How does thou know this?"
"Only kind of magician round these parts is an evil one."
"Shut up, for I hear footsteps behind yonde doorway!"
And strewth! For the doorway dod open amid much dust, and a stooped creature dressed in robes of darkest night did enter, and cough at the dust.
"Curthed dutht! Thou will fathe my wrath when the cleaner arrifths!" the man did declare.
"Avast! What art thou, foul creature?" Demigod did claim.
"Verily, for I am the thervant of Kirsten, Dark Witch of the Protectors of the Plot- I mean, of the Lotht Foretht!"
And lo the warriors did gasp in wonder, for behind him entered a woman of such beauty that they would have fallen to their knees if they could have, the chains and all.
"Are you quite finished?" she did say in a voice that evoked stupid flowery metaphors like none before, and the creature was humbled.
"Thorry Kirthten, jutht getting into it."
"Alas!" Jeff did cry. "For what manner of succubi art thou fair lady, to have this demon bow to your every will!"
"A what!?" the woman did screech.
"Hey, I do not!"
"Verily, for thou must be a depraved and sadistic mistress to have chained us here, no doubt to perform salicious and constant acts upon our poor bodies!" Jeff did declare.
And the woman known as Kirthten-
-Kirsten, even, did glare. "Someone has been playing to much Darkstalkers I warrent. Tyler!"
"Yeth ma-am?"
"Ready the pickaxes!"
"Yeth ma'am!"
And the creature Tyler did hobble off, probably to ready some pickaxes. And the Dark Witch Kirsten did turn, muttering that they Were Not Paying Her Enough For This Crap. "Now! Why are you in my- I mean; Why art thou in mine woods! Speak or have thy fingernails ripped out!"
And jeff did sceam like a girl, whilst Demigid and mabat did steel themselves. "Nay enchating witch! Thou shalt not get anything from us, even on pain of death!"
"What about on pain of pain?" she did ask, for Tyler did hobble in, carrying many sharp pickaxes.
"We are on a quest to rescue the King from the Bacon Elementals! or something!"
And Kirsten did mutter more, that This Was Getting Ridiculous. "Sigh. But the Bacon Elementals of Fri'ingland are wily, and shall resist your rescue attempts with their Christ, I can't believe i'm going to say this Crispy Slicing Rashers of Hurting!"
"We care not, for we shall find a way!" Mabat did declare. "Good shall always triumph!"
"Then why are you still in this forest?"
"Verily, we have slightly deviated from our route!"
"Thtupid warriorth, for thith ith the Lotht Foretht, and none may ethcape it!" Tyler did cackled evilly and near incomprehensibly.
"But we shall! For we fight for Light! And to save the King! And that other stupid stuff that was mentioned a few chapters ago!"
And Kirsten did sigh. "And so you shall, for I am powerless to resist your charms, and will release you due to newfound love-"
"Wait a minute," Jeff did declare, "does thou not have to go through the whole Evil-temptress-falls-in-love-with-tempted scene?"
"Usually, but I'm sick to death of this cameo." And she did release them from their chains, and led them to the door. "There, now you must continue on your quest for Light and yadda yadda, exit of the forest is one mile that way, now get out and don't come back." And she did boot them from her den of villany and Dark Arts.
"You thoved them out early, you were thupposed to fall in love with one of them and releathe them, due to the goodneth of your heart," Tyler did proclaim.
"Shut up," Kirsten did reply.

And so the warriors did continue onwards, slightly puzzled from their encounter.
"Onward!" mabat did declare, judging that if they did notthink about it, it would go away. "To honour!"
"Onward!" Demigod did declare.
"Forward- I mean; onward!" Jeff did declare also, and all was right.

End of Chapter 7

Next time on Progress Quest! Will out brave heroes come any closer to their goal? Will adventures and combat occur on the way? Will the fate of the universe and life itself eventually come to rest on their shoulders after a tortuous journey and many new friends are found and lost?


Chapter 8: Like in DBZ!!!

And eventually, as in all things, the motley trio did come across a lake of ducks water, and stopped.
"Verily, how deep does it look?" Jeff did ask.
"Let us find out!" Mabat did declare, and pushed Jeff in.
"Verily! 'Tis deeglubglubglub-"
"Can he swim?" Demigod did ask in concern.
"I care not. God looks after fools."
"Verily," Demigod did agree, as Jeff did drift ashore and climb back up to them.
"'Tis quite deep-"
"-You mean bastard."
And so the three did move up the banks, acorss slippery rocks and trecharous caverns, until lo! They did reach a bridge, and this being That Kind of quest, twas a man of steel standing upon this bridge of iron, and Demigod did scream like a girl and dive for the cover of some rocks, dragging Jeff and Mabat.
"Oi!" Jeff did delcare. "What the hell was that for?"
"'Tis my greatest foe!" Demigod declared. "The dreaded half-demon half-Canadian warrior Zeero! The Bridge Guardian of Swordiness!"
"Eh?" jeff did say, being an idiot, looking at said Guardian. "He doesn't have a sword."
"Alright, so my information may be outdated!"
And Mabat did stand. "Ha! I fear no northern demon types!" And saying so he did stand and walk out onto yonder bridge of iron
"HALT! NONE SHALL PASS!" The Guardian did declare.
And Mabat did draw his mighty hammer. "Lo! For I am the Messenger! Stand aside, or be smoten with such force as would give migraines to Lucifer!"
"But we beat her already. Lemme through."
"Well, she didn't tell me that." And thus saying the Guardian did draw his Mighty Serrated Pronged Poleax of +30 hurtiness. "Lo! Fear me! For I am Zeero, the Bridge Guardian of Axi-ness!"
"Zeero?" Mabat did ask in puzzlement.
"The extra 'e' is for extra extras!"
And mabat did cry in rage and rush at Zeero, who did hit him on the head from a great distance with his sharp and long poleax.
"Ow," Mabat did say, and drew back. "Verily, though thou may be luckier than I, I am more powerful than you!"
"Nay, for I was using only one percent of my power at that thap!" Zeero did declare.
"Gasp!" Mabat did gasp. "Thou are more powerful than me, and now I must go and train until I am more powerful than you!"
And thus saying, the two did start doing pushups.

And Demigod and Jeff did look at each other.
"Are they," Jeff did ask, "taking the piss?"

Several days later

And Mabat did jump to his feet.
"Aha! For I am now more powerful than even your most powerful powered attack!" And he did run forwards and hit Zeero's poleax. "Grrr!" he said, as he tried to smash Zeero's Ax with his power.
"Aha! For my ax is stronger than yours by one tenth, and can never be broken!"
"Alas! For it is true! I must reforge my axe to be stronger than yours!"
And mabat did run off to sit under a waterfall an reforge his great axe, while Jeff and Demigod did play another round of lackjack.
"Now!" Mabat did declare several hours later. "My hammer is stronger than the strongest titanium, and will smash your ax!" And he did so.
Zeero did look forlornly at his smash-ed ax. "Alas! For now Imust fight you with mine bear hands!"
"You mean bare?"
"No. Attack, bears!"
"YAAARG!" Mabat did declare, as bears did leap from the river and attack him.
And Zeero did laugh, for his bears had defeated Mabat. "I am the strongest in the world," he did say, and laughed some more.
"NO!" Mabat did shout, and threw the bears away. "For I am stronger than you and your bears by a factor of .01 again!" And he did smack Zeero with his hammer once more.
But Zeero did survive. "Then, the only answer is for us to fire large beams of lightning at each other for hours on end with no result for days, running into the next chapter ane making people wait for no good reason!"
"NO!" shouted Jeff, who had had enough. "Zeero, your shoelaces are undone!"
"Aha! For I am not to be tricked by that trick, for I am no cloth shoelaces on my steel armoured boots!"
"Your steel armoured shoelaces are undone?"
"What? That is not safe!" And he did bend down to tie them.
And Jeff did push him from the bridge.
"YAAARG!" Zeero did declare in anger, and fell into the suddenly much deeper and faster running lake. "Curse you Jeff! I shall have my revenge!"
"Thou may not be such a moron as first we thought!" Mabat did declare.
"Nah, he is really," Demigod did wisper.

And so, having vanquished their foe by ways of trickery, deceit, and bad landscape description, they did move on.

And above them, in the trees, a lone warrior mage did look upon them, sigh in resignment, and unhold her wings and fly after them, wondering why the hell she had ever agreed to this.

And yet further up, a lone psychic object-thingy did look upon the three warriors, and laugh in a diabolical sort of way, and waft off. And was caught by a breeze, and carried back the way it came, to much diabolical cursing.

End of chapter 8

Next time on Progress Quest! Will the identity of the flying woman be revealed? Will the identity of the pissed-off yet very evil shade be revealed? Will the author stop using this fic as an excuse to not do his History coursework?

Also Yup
Hell no! LOLZ!!

I, Koshi Rikudo Pierson, hereby allow Excel Saga Progress Quest, to be a serious anime work of fiction.

Bear with me for the next couple of chapters while I advance the plot a little. Well, a lot actually. It had to happen at some point. Therefore, the next two chapters are gonna be serious ones before we return to your regulary scheduled madness.

Chapter 9: Wings Above, Shadows Below...

"We're lost again, aren't we?" Jeff asked gloomily.
"Shut up and help," Mabat replied, straining against the treetrunk blocking their path.
Demigod looked back towards the forest in apprehension. "Are they still following us?"
In answer a ghostly spreech sounded through the air, and thunder rolled above them.
"Yes," Jeff and Mabat said, and strained harder.
Jeff cursed under his breath. When he had left home, he had expected to travel the world, meet interesting creatures, and kill them. He had not expected to meet with the One True Peacemaker and his hammer, a weird... well, he didn't know what the hell Demigod was, and be pursued through yet another forest by demons.
Well, bigger demons than last time. And harder to kill. He had a broken sword to testify to that. He hissed and grabbed his arm as another jet of pain shot down it, and he pulled his makeshift bandage a little tighter. Damn demons also were better fighters. If it was a demon...
"Got it!" Mabat shouted suddenly. For a second nothing happened, and then the entire tree just rolled over, revealing a massive hole in the side they could climb through. And a demon.
"Shit! Mabat cursed, who dodged backwards as a scythe unfolded from the black of the demon and swung at him. The thing tore a strip of cloth from his cloak, scraping against hus armour. Mabat dodged back forward and smashed his hammer onto the demons head. It went through the humanoid creature like it was nothing. And when Mabat raised his hammer for another strike, he realised it had been nothing. Again.
"That thing is really starting to annoy me," he snarled, examining his ruined cloak.
"Fashion later, run now," Demigod said, and bounded through the trunk, followed quicly by Jeff and a cursing Mabat.


I missed.
I can see that. Get after them, and watch out for the Angel. She's there with you.
I know. I can feel her.
Watch your back. Your debt is not yet paid.
I hear and obey. They will be dead by morning.


"Did any of you...hear that?" Jeff gasped as he ran.
Mabat didn't even turn around. "Who cares... just keep running."
"Er... guys?"
Jeff looked towards Demigod, and followed the demihuman's gaze up into the treetops.
"You have got to be freakin' kidding me!"
Above them a vague outline of a human bounded through the treetops effortlessly, baleful yellow eyes ocassionally looking down on them, the only detail on it's body.
"Goddamn I hate these guys," Mabat said, and from somewhere inside him picked up the stamina to run a little faster.
It didn't do him any good. The shadow above them stopped suddenly, and then in one leap fell onto the path ahead of them, the silvery blade of it's weapon appearing from nowhere.
"Going somewhere?"
Mabat didn't even stop. He threw his arm forward and his warhammer whirled through the air, forcing the thing to dodge sideways. Mabat followed this up with a right haymaker, and it fell hard, fading into a dark puddle on the floor that whipped under him, re-forming behind him and scoring a bloody streak down Mabat's back with it's now-it's-here-now-it-isn't scythe. Mabat hissed in pain and fell backwards. the shadow raised it's weapon for afinal strike, but Demigod and Jeff charged forward and dragged it aside before it could, and watched helpless as it melted into the floor again. They turned as they felt hands wrap around their feet, and were summarily yanked from their feet again as the thing pulled hard.
"Goddamnit! Stay where we can hit you!" Jeff shouted, and slammed his broken sword into the ground around the shadow. To his surprise, it whipped away and reformed as human a few metres from him, eyes glaring at him, and scythe raised again. He couldn't dodge this one, and thought about closing his eyes as it fell. He felt a bright flash pulse through the clearing, and shut them anyway.
After the ten or so seconds it took to filter into his brain that he wasn't dead, he blinked the white light away and looked back up at where sharp stabbity death had been moments before.
The...thing... was on it's knees, holding it's hands (at least, where his hands probably where if he judged it's shadow right) over it's eyes, leaving a black pit where light refused to fall. It's sycthe lay a few feet from it, as if it had been throw there.
"Need some help?"
Jeff looked up through he stars in his eyes, and blinked. "Am I dead?" he asked.
The woman staring down at him smiled. "No. They don't let Silhouettes in heaven," she said, pointing a thumb at the incapacitated murderous shadow behind her. She held out a hand, and Jeff was pulled to his feet. He found himself staring not at his rescuer, but past her.
"W...You... eh?"
The woman smiled again and flexed her wings. Her wings. "You don't get much news from where you come from, do you?" she asked gently.
Jeff turned as he heard a rustle from behind him, and turned to see Mabat on his knees, head down and sword tip-down on the ground. To his surprise, Demigod was the same. "Look, who are you- OW! What was that for!" he said ingidnantly, as Mabat thwacked the back of his knees, and he was forced down.
"Idiot! Don't you know who this is?"
"I know you just hit me for no good god-damned reason!"
"Weiila, I apologise for my comrade's attitude. He's rather simple, and-"
"Get up Mabat. I'm not a real angel anymore, remember? And hi Demigod. It's been a while."
"Weiila," Demigod said respectfully, as the two more experienced warriors rose.
Jeff looked from one to the other to the last. "Will someone tell me what the hell is going on here?" he asked.
"Gladly," Weiila replied. "Just let's deal with this thing first."
And so saying, she turned around and with no apparent effort drew a sword from nowhere and sliced the things head off.

End of chapter 9

Chapter 10: Encroached

Jeff sat down heavily, taking care not to move his arm to much. Mabat sunk down onto a log, keeping his hammer well within his grasp, and Demigod perched on the clearing in front of them and hurled down a clump of wood.
"Why are we stopping?" Jeff asked again. Mabat just pointed.
Weiila walked along the edges of the small clearing, one hand held palm down to the ground. Jef could hear her whispering in a melodic language he couldn't understand, and her wings flickered silver as every syllable elft her mouth. When she had paced the periphery once, she turned back and nodded. "We're safe."
Mabat visibly relaxed, even going so far as to put down his hammer. "Well, thak Christ for small mercies."
Jeff shook his head clear. "Will someone... please tell me... what the hell is going on here!?"
Weiila looked over at him. "It was the Silhouette. A being made of shadow."
"Except it must have been Enthralled to someone. I got at least two hits on him and it didn't even pause," Mabat inserted.
"Enthralled?" jeff asked.
"If a person asks another for a favour that cannot possibly be repaid in any lifetime, they that soul is bound to serve the other until the debt is paid, and neither can die until it is."
"And that one's harder to kill than most," Demigod grumbled.
"You knew it?" Jeff asked, no less confused for Weiila's explanation.
"Him. And we've bumped heads a few times. Of course back then he wasn't Enthralled..." Weilla said. She stopped suddenly, as if aware she had said something wrong, and instead turned to the small pile of brush Demigod had gathered. She idly flicked a finger at it, and with a whoosh there was suddenly a roaring fire
Jeff, in no mood to look a gift horse in the mouth, shffled closer.
"The Shilhouette runs from extreme light. If he is Enthralled, then there's nothing much we can do excpet keep him out." She gestured around at the area she had been muttering enchantments over. "A decent Flaregate should keep him away. It'll shone like the sun if he crosses that line."
Jeff sighed and laid back on the warming ground. "Who are you?"
Mabat chuckled. "You really haven't been far from that backwater village of yours."He gestured with his hand at them both. "Jeff, meet Weiila, Voodoo Angel-"
"Ex-Angel, thankyouverymuch," Weiila interrupted.
Jeff frowned. "A Voodoo Angel? How does that work?"
"It's an inherited skill. Of course, Gabe and the others... weren't exactly supportive. Or merciful." She stopped, and an embarressed silence fell over them.
"So what are you doing here helping out three lost questers?" Demigod broke in.
Weiila crossed her arms and 'hmph'ed. "Just because they threw me out doesn't mean they've forgotten about me. They can't interfere with this, but I can."
"That must be making you really popular at the minute," Mabat said dryly. Jeff jumped slightly. He thought the warrior had been asleep.
"Very. The Above wants an eye kept on you three, and apparently I happen to be the only one in the world capable of doing so." She waved a hand over the dirt in front of them, and Jeff watched in awe-struck silence as the soil moved and formed a map of the surrounding area.
"We're here in the Elen Forest," Weiila said, pointing at a lumpy rough sphere. She moved her hand and as she did so a thin line of soil formed a ledge for theireyes to follow. "The King is being held here, inside the Great Cliffs. Getting there will not be difficult, but my magic won't work inside the caves, and even three of you can't kill all th Elementals inside them," she said.
"So we give up and go home?" Mabat said in frustration.
"I didn't say that. They are elementals, and-"
"-Every element has it's opposite," jeff cut in.
Weiila glanced up at him with a smile. "Not as stupid as you've thought, eh Mabat?"
Mabat actually blushed. "You've been listening, huh?"
"Since the Lost Forest. Kirsten and I have an agreement. She doesn't turn me into a rat, I don't reduce her forest to a smoking crater. We get on fine." She looked back down at the map again. "Luckily, He hasn't set very powerful Elementals guarding the King, so finding their particular anti-items shouldn't be hard. There's a town not far from here we can get supplies at. We need to go now though."
"No argument from me," Demigod said, standig and turning to get back onto the path out. "This place gives me the WHOA!"
The three spun around as Demigod jumped back into the enchanted circle.
For one second when he turned Demigod had been nose to nose with the Silhouette. In one motion Mabat's hammer was in his hand and coming in a ballistic arc that would have terminated in it flying about a mile back into the forest if Weiila hadn't grabbed his arm.
"How long have you been watching?" she asked quietly.
Jeff shivered as a sudden chill ran through his body. Weiila didn't seem to hear it though, and just nodded.
"Then go back to your slavemaster and tell him that," she said defiantly. "Otherwise get out of our way."
The chill swept through Jeff again, but try as he might he couldn't hear anything.
"Then take your blackened soul outta here!" Weiila said angrily.
The yellowed eyes glowed feircely for one second, and swept over the party. Then suddenly the shadow was flying into the treetops, heading down the path towards their exit. Jeff groaned inwardly.
Weiila turned back to them. "Wehave five miutes before he starts trying. Go!" And then she was gone, a thin silvery mist heading along the path and leafs sucked up into the air by her passage the only things left. Jeff felt a massive hand pull him forwards, and then he was running.

The left four minutes and fifty-nine seconds passed in an oxygen-less haze, and when the next second ticked by and darkness personified did not swoop down to swallow them, they slowed down a bit. When they reached the edge of the forest they found out why.
Weiila and the Silhouette stood nearly touching, glaring at each other with yellow and blue eeys respectively. Mabat took one look at the eerie tableux and ran past them, virtually falling out of the darkened capnopy and into sunlight, followed seconds later by Demigod and Jeff.
He turned back. "Weiila, come on! he shouted.
Weiila turned her head slightly, and Jeff instantly saw what a bad idea this was. Metal flashed above her, and she ddoged left and down as the scythe tore through her right shoulder, and then she was out, Mabat grabbing her and looking past her into the forest as the yellow eyes faded, leaving only the dank and grim passge. "Are you okay?" he asked.
Weiila hissed. "It's a Cursed Blade, it'll... take a while... to heal," she hissed through gritted teeth. "Be lucky he didn't get any of you for more than a scratch."
"So where to?" Jeff asked, as Weiila pushed Mabat aside.
"The village of Dozum will have what we need. From there we head to the Great Cliffs. We have to rescue the King, or something bad is going to happen."
The four rested for a minute, Mabat tearing a strip from his cloak and handing it to Weiila, and then the moved south, leaving the darkness and shadows in the forest behind them.


You screwed up.
Not my fault. Weii- I mean the Angel intervened.
Remember what you said earlier? I am most displeased.
Well, you can take your displeasement and shove it up your-
Ah ah ah, need to call down some of the more... painful... aspects of your Enthrallment on you again?Nothing to say? Good.
Damnit Lunaris! One day I'm going to be free of your debt, and then I'll take great pleasure shoving your tongue down into your rotten stinking-

The Silhouette fell onto it's knees in the forest, screaming silently in the darkness. The pain lasted for seconds minutes hours days, and then it abated.
What... the hell... was that for!?
I did it to remind you exactly why you're Enthralled to me. I did it to remind you who's in charge here. I did it because I could. Get moving Pierson, they must not reach the King alive!
...I hear and obey.

End of chapter 10

Next time on Progress Quest!

Click it! Yooouuu knoooow that you waaaaaant toooo...