Marco is a steely figure, one with pride. However, he wasn't always a proud figure, and died defending Jamaa...
Marco and the Phantoms
by Amy Jiao
The phantoms met under the volcano, with the phantom rulers awaiting them. They knelt at their dark thrones, then rose."We have failed many grand times to destroy Jamaa,"the phantom king said once they all were silent.
"We may have been defeated, but since then, many Jammers have thought foul thoughts, and created more of us, so now we have enough to destroy a legion."the phantom queen added.The phantoms all nodded."We'll overcome the alphas, and launch the phantoms from the volcano!WE SHALLTH DESTROY THE FOUL LAND OF JAMAA!!"Everyone took up the rant, and the lava streaming down the walls brightened.
"Now, gather around me for the plan..."the phantom king said...
Marco, the rockhopper, walked along the beach, observing crabs and sea slugs. He had a knack for talking to Twolegs, yet there were none in this new land his ship had came to, where it had sunk running into some tidepools. He ate some sardines, then floated the dead man's float in the cold water. Cold? He had sworn that a second ago that the water was warm, but now a chill ran along his spine. Marco looked down, and saw some black kelp wafting toward him, only that it had one, cold eye. He reached out to touch it. Squishy, as if it were living tears.
"Nar! Don't touch me!"the kelp exclaimed, and electrocuted him. Yelping, he ran onto the beach, bumping into a grey heron, only that the heron wasn't solid. Marco ran right through her, and she yelped, dropping her coffee.
"What's wrong with you!"she angrily cried, then read his thoughts. Her voice tapped into his mind, and Marco took down his barriers sleepily. She scoured his recent memories, then frowned. "You saw a phantom."she said.
"Phan-what?"he said, cocking his head.
"Phantom!"she exclaimed."Holy Zios, does this Jammer know ANYTHING?!? Anyway, my name is Mira, and we have a crisis."
Marco wanted explanations, but Mira just placed them in his mind, and he nodded."We have to gather the Alphas."he said.
"Good thinking, Marco."Mira said. Marco had no idea how she knew his name, but again, she scoured his memories. He had no idea what he had gotten himself into, but he wanted to defend Jamaa with his life now.
"We're here, Lord Mira."mysterious voices said from behind Marco. He turned, and saw various animals kneeling behind him, such as a panda, a tiger, and a fox. "Rise, my dear Alphas."Mira said.
They rose."We will get everyone inside the golden ring now, to make sure nobody gets hurt. The phantoms are rising to battle again.Are you sure being binded to your statue won't make you less able?"the alphas said.
Mira smiled."No, as long as you fight for me.Now, we must prepare."
The phantoms struck from the sea, but the alphas managed to keep them at bay. Then, Mira listened carefully, and frowned."The screams are coming from the temple."she muttered.
Marco listened, and he heard it too."Alphas, we must move to the temple!"he shouted.
Lisa glared at him."Are you kidding, Mira and Marco?!Any less effort, and the sea phantoms will overrun us!"she shouted."Go see what is going on!"Mira flapped her wings reluctantly, and they were in the ruins of Zios's temple. Marco could tell that it once had been grand, but now it was sheer ruins. Only the Temple of Trivia, one of Zios's aspects, was renovated, and even that was in ruins. The chamber of Knowledge sat over a river, and a pit with sparks coming out of it was in the center. Zios's grave.
"AAAAH!"a small bunny screamed as she ran from her stalker, a flaming phantom. Those were her last words as it tackled her, and ate the body.Mira flapped her wings, but nothing happened.The phantoms had too much chaos energy going for peace to overcome it.Mira blasted the phantoms, but more kept coming."FALLING PHANTOMS!"a little wolf pup squealed.Mira whisked her into the gold ring before a small phantom could kill her.Marco directed all the animals into the golden ring with Mira's help, yet many helpless Jammers lay dead on the ground.Mira didn't have much more time until she was whisked back into her statue, and they still had work to do. They worked, and eventually went back to the beach after all the Jammers were safe.
More sea phantoms kept coming out of the sea, and the alphas were tiring. When Mira told them what was happening, they paled.
"We have to evacuate Jamaa."Harper whispered in disbelief."Not even the golden ring can save us now."Marco was sad, since he had just set paw on this land.
"Not yet!"he cried.The alphas were shocked. They looked at him in disbelief."I know what we can do!"
"I'll join him."Greely growled under his breath as he ate a phantom(ew, but he consumed phantoms for their protein levels)Mira replaced him, and they summoned all the water they could from the ocean. For some reason Marco was good at summoning water, much to Greely's shock. Dashing up to the volcano, they dumped the water into the volcano. The lava steamed as phantoms were cooked, and the phantom king cried out in agony and disbelief.
"Run!"he shouted, and they had just enough time to run into the circle of golden paint with the alphas when the volcano went KA-BOOM. Water and lava covered Jamaa, preserving the bodies of those who died. Marco and the Alphas went to Mira in the lava-caked forest.
"What will we do?"they cried."We have nowhere to live!"Mira flapped her wings, and Jamaa was back to normal. Marco didn't realize how tired he was, until he fell to the ground, the icy grip of death gripping him.
He awoke as a spirit, lying in a bed of comfy wool. There was sand all around him, and plastic phantom pinatas hung from the ceiling, apparently coming from a volcano painted on the wallpaper. Tables near him showed battle plans for different phantom species and other specters of the phantom rulers strewn about.Marco hopped out of bed, and Lisa the panda alpha, Mira and a spirit of a floating mask appeared in the doorway. Lisa's eyes widened.
"You're awake!"She bear-hugged him, and he blushed.
"Where am I?"he asked her. She withdrew.
"You are in the alpha hut, in your bedroom."Mira said.
"I am Zios, and I will be your mentor."Zios said."You deserve it, otherwise Jamaa would've been buried for many millenia." Marco was flustered, and followed the floating mask out into Jamaa, to see the land of the Jamaasians.