They should have known better than to even allude to the Plumbers’ names as the moment the words left Agent Three’s mouth they could feel Bowser’s grip painfully tighten around her body, squeezing the inkling like a living stress toy. Needless to say, ouch! With her lungs smushed together Three could barely breathe, much less try and backpedal out of this mess. She was entirely left at Bowser’s mercy.
Panicking, Three tried to desperately wiggle herself more breathing space to no avail. Great Zapfish, her internal organs were going to be crushed into ink flavored jelly if this went on any longer! which made her all the more thankful when his grip did finally relax, apparently the thought of Princess Toadstool being what saved the inkling from such a grisly fate. Inkling would have to thank the Princess, for without Bowser’s creepy obsession with her they’d surely would have been a goner.
Taking in deep breaths of delicious air they somehow managed to still pay attention to Bowser’s wishful thinking, how he’d love it if Peach was just right in front of him, so he could be able to swoop the princess off from her feet, probably against her will. But that wasn’t the important part. No, Agent Three paid careful mind to listen as the Koopa mentioned something about having plans or as he phrased it “grand star-level” plans, whatever that meant.
Maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea letting herself get kidnapped after all. If Bowser was this loose lipped about these supposed plans then maybe Agent Three would be able to get him to spill some real vital information, making it all the more easier to stop him in the long run. They could already imagine the other’s looking on in awe once Agent Three returned and spilled all of the tea concerning Bowser’s schemes. Maybe the others would be just so impressed by Three’s agent skills that they’d then not even realize just how poorly planned out their escape had been. Yeah! And all she needed to do was to keep Bowser talking!
As soon as that bit of hope shined through Bowser heartlessly crushed it to smithereens, as he didn’t even stay on the topic for a millisecond before changing his tune, instead suddenly deciding that he should catch up on how his son was doing instead. Well nevermind then, guess Agent Three couldn’t even have one single thing go well for her. Whatever cosmic force was watching over the inkling seemingly had decided that today was going to be the day that it’d screw around with them for no particular reason.
Bemoaning the cruelty of the universe for holding up a carrot just to pull it away, they tried to hide any visible expression of disappointment, remembering that she still was in fact at the mercy of a giant fire breathing turtle who could crush her to bits if he so pleased. Thankfully it seemed his attention was still on chatting with his son, as the King summoned back Kamek from the skies, ordering him to set up a connection.
Like any other reasonable person Inkling would think it’d just be as simple as handing a phone over to the Koopa, something which shouldn’t require a literal wizard to set up but turns out that wasn’t the case. Agent Three watched as Kamek utilized his magic once more, this time to create some form of magical vision in front of the group. It took a moment for the image on it to form but soon enough Inkling would be able to recognize the sight of Bowser Junior in his room, unaware of the three sets of eyes that now stared on him.
It’d take Bowser greeting the kid for him to realize he was being watched, Three holding their breath just so she wouldn’t giggle at the prince frantically looking for the noise’s source.
A total 180 from how the king had been acting the moment she’d met him in the woods, Bowser’s gruff and callous voice softened with the friendly warmth one could only expect from a parent. No more was she looking at the sworn enemy of the Mushroom Kingdom, as instead a loving father stood in his place. She could barely rationalize this sudden switch in demeanor, that the man who’d threatened to murder a group of people just hours prior was now cheerfully chatting with his son like nothing had happened.
Inkling watched on as the two chatted about homework, feeling as if she shouldn’t even be allowed to listen to such a domestic conversation coming from Bowser of all people. Still, as totally weird as it was, they couldn’t deny the nostalgia that ached in their heart as they looked on at the scene. If she closed her eyes she could perfectly imagine Junior as a younger version of herself, the same exact conversation happening between her and her own family. Man, it really did take her back.
Those were the days, back when the only things on Three’s mind were beating her high score on Squid Jump, scrambling to finish her homework before it was due and spending the rest of her time hanging out at the Square with her friends, taking on Turf Battle after Turf Battle. It was strange to think it’d only been two years since she’d left that life and plunged full force into the world of being an Agent. Video games were replaced with missions and instead of homework they were scrambling to get the Zapfish back from the Octarians. And her old friends probably had long forgotten about her by now. A necessary loss, she had to leave that life and everything within it, even her real name. No longer was she that youthful squid living her days with careless bliss, she had a duty towards Inkadia, and that meant letting go of her past, including that innocent youth.
….God that made her feel old. Maybe she should like, get a hobby or something. That was what normal Inklings do during their midlife crisis right? Or, she guessed in her case it’d be called what, a quarter-of-your-life crisis? No, that was stupid. Scratch that, everything about this was stupid. What was she even doing? Now was not the time for that kind of extensional crisis, especially since Bowser was lifting her up towards the vision-
Entirely caught off guard, it took a moment for Three to even collect themselves before they’d finally greet Junior with a small wave and a somewhat confused, “Woomy…?” Only for that confusion to continue to blossom at the mention of a play date between the inkling and the prince.
How old did this guy think she was? Sure, her whole schtick being that she’s a squid who can turn into a kid was a bit of a misnomer, but surely even Bowser would realize that she’s too old for stuff like play dates.
But rather than ever even thinking of admitting this out loud to said Bowser who still could easily snap their body like a twig, Agent Three gave Bowser Junior their best ‘I’m totally not freaking out, what do you mean?’ smile and nodded along as if everything was perfectly normal, totally not regretting the series of events that led them into this mess of a situation.
Location: The Jungle