Categories > Anime/Manga > Excel Saga > Quack Experimental Fanfic Excel Fusion Z

Bo knows Shoujo like Mojo Jojo

by Nidoking 0 reviews

Love is in the air, and everyone's falling in it. Love, not the air. Yakumo dies many times.

Category: Excel Saga - Rating: R - Genres: Crossover, Humor, Parody - Characters: Other - Warnings: [!!] [V] - Published: 2005-05-09 - Updated: 2005-05-10 - 15251 words

Koshi Rikdo skipped happily through the campus, ignoring the funny looks from the students he passed. Crumpled in his fist was the secondary object of his excitement, the letter that had brought him this far.
"Dear Mr. Rikdo,
"I am a great admirer of your work and have finally worked up the courage to write you this note. Please meet me behind the auditorium at 7:00 tonight with your lips ready. I will be waiting."
"Oh, I wonder who it could be! Some tender young woman who wants a kiss from her favorite satirist is waiting for me! Don't worry, my love! I'll be there!" He flew around the corner of the building and threw his arms around the note's author.
"I'm happy to see you too, but not THAT happy," said Nidoking.
Rikdo screamed and shattered into pieces.
"Hey, pull yourself together, you goof. Nobody saw that but you, me, and the people reading this story."
Rikdo leapt to his feet and jabbed a finger into Nidoking's face. "It's your fault! You wrote me an anonymous love letter!"
"Love letter?" Nidoking shook his head. "That was just an invitation."
Rikdo glared at him. "'With your lips ready'?"
"To give me permission to write another episode of QEFEFZ, of course," explained Nidoking.
"'Worked up the courage'?"
"Well, I was afraid you'd refuse."
Rikdo's mouth became a thin line, and his eyebrows twitched. "You write like a girl," he said at last.
"Why, thank you." Nidoking shyly clasped his hands together in front of his waist. "So, how about it? Can I write another episode?"
"Absolutely not! I've made that mistake twice, and this time, I won't let you strong-arm me into doing it again!"
Nidoking pouted. "But this time, I was going to make it all about your original manga, without any of the stuff Nabeshin added in the anime."
Rikdo blinked. "My manga? You actually read my manga?"
Tears streamed down Nidoking's face. "I'm sorry! I thought it would make you happy!"
"Oh, of course it does! I get royalties!"
"Waffo!" cheered Nidoking.
"So, what did you think of the ending?" asked Rikdo. "Did you understand the point I was trying to make?"
"Well, I didn't read ALL of it," admitted Nidoking. "Only three volumes have been published yet."
"NIDOKING NO BAKA!" shouted Rikdo as he punched Nidoking through the wall. "That's not enough! How can you write a parody of a manga when you haven't read all of it? There's a character who doesn't show up until book seven who wasn't in the anime at all! How do you expect to parody her when you don't even know that she exists?"
Nidoking climbed out of the rubble. "But I already promised the readers I'd write an episode based on the manga! It was in the preview at the end of the last episode! I can't break that trust!"
"Ah, but isn't Excel Saga all about breaking conventions?" asked Rikdo slyly.
"Koshi-chan, you're a genius!" shouted Nidoking, throwing his arms around the manga artist. "I can write an episode about something else instead, like shoujo romance!"
Rikdo's eyes widened in shock. "Shoujo romance? With THOSE characters?"
"It's either that or the manga," replied Nidoking. He let go and took a step back. "So, what do you say?"
Rikdo sighed. "Fine." He got down on one knee, took a tiny box out of his pocket, and opened it to reveal a ring with his name engraved on it. "I, Koshi Rikdo, give Nidoking permission to turn Quack Experimental Fanfic Excel Fusion Z into a shoujo romance." He took the ring out of the box and slipped it onto Nidoking's finger.
"Oh, Rikdo, I'm so happy!" cried Nidoking, drawing the man up into a strong hug and a beautiful kiss. "Wait a second... I said shoujo romance, not shounen ai!" He screamed and sat up abruptly in his bed, covered with sweat. "Oh my god... that was the most horrible nightmare ever!" He clenched his fists and felt cold metal around his finger. The ring with Rikdo's name was still in place. "Hey, cool, I've still got permission!" He let his hand rest on the bed... and that's when he felt it. Something soft and lumpy under the covers beside him. "Wait a second...." He slowly turned to see the outline of a person under the blanket. "That had BETTER be a woman," he mumbled as he pulled the blanket down.
The biggest eyes he'd ever seen slowly opened to peer at him from beneath a long, flowing head of blue hair. "Good morning, you cutie you," she murmured sleepily.
"You - you - you..." stammered Nidoking. "YURIKA MISUMARU!" He leapt out of the bed and ran through the wall, still in his underwear.
"Wait, darling, come back!" shouted Yurika. "I made soup!"



Mihoshi hummed contentedly to herself as she hopped, skipped, and jumped from room to room, decorating the walls and ceilings with paper hearts, streamers, and the occasional vegetable. She finally came to a halt in the bedroom as she noticed that her roommate was finally waking up. "Oh, good morning, Yakumo-chan!"
"Shut up and let me sleep," groaned Yakumo. He rolled over and fell to the apartment below, sending up a fountain of blood as he landed.
Mihoshi shook her head sadly. "Poor Yakumo. With as little flooring as we have left, ninety-five percent of his fatal accidents happen in the home." She quickly navigated the maze of floor tiles that had escaped Clef's wrath and grabbed the emergency rope, tied it around her waist, and leapt down to Yakumo's rescue.
Yakumo sighed as he helped her off her face. "You forgot to tie the other end to something, didn't you?"
"Oops! But don't worry!" She quickly looped the rope around a chair and tied a knot. "There we go! All tied!"
"You really don't get it, do you?"
"Nope!" Mihoshi boasted proudly. "But I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night!"
"No you didn't. You slept in the bedroom upstairs, just like you do every night."
"Can we try to take over the world? The sailor uniform is the correct answer!"
A pit opened under her feet, and she plunged into it, causing the chair to sweep Yakumo into a sitting position as it followed her down the hole.
"Damn you and your ropes, Mihoshiiiiiiiiii!" screamed Yakumo.
From the chair that hadn't fallen into the bottomless pit, Pluto looked up from her morning paper. "Since there's no apartment beneath this one, I suppose a reset is in order." She chuckled to herself. "Oh, that Calvin!"
"I missed that effect so much," mused Sailor Pluto as the reset ended. "Wait, I wasn't supposed to be in this scene. Damn."
"Say, Yacchan, do you know where I can buy a really big pen?" asked Mihoshi.
"Why do you need a big pen?" asked Yakumo.
Mihoshi pointed to the computer screen. "This E-mail says my pen is too small to please women, and I need a bigger one."
Yakumo squinted at the screen. "That's not what it says, Mihoshi."
"Well, there was an extra 'is' in there," she admitted, "but I ignored it. This person has horrible spelling. They must be even stupider than I am!"
"I'm not sure that's possible, Mihoshi."
Mihoshi's eyes sparkled. "Wow, Yacchan! That's the nicest thing you've ever said to me!"
Yakumo scratched his chin. "The funny part is, that's probably true." His hand froze. "Wait a second. Did you just call me 'Yacchan' again?"
"Of course, Yacchan!" said Mihoshi with a smile. "Would you prefer I called you 'Yakumo-chan' instead? It's not as cute, though...."
"I don't want to be cute!" snapped Yakumo. "It was one thing while everyone was speaking in Japanese, but we're past that now! Why are you doing it?"
"It's springtime, silly!" said Mihoshi, as if that would explain everything.
"What does springtime have to do with anything?"
"Spring fever!" replied Mihoshi, jumping up three notches on the isn't-it-obvious scale.
"You've got SOME kind of fever, all right," Yakumo murmured.
The computer emitted a weak ding, and a window popped up. "Hey, I've got mail!" said Mihoshi.
"Isn't the computer supposed to say that?" asked Yakumo.
"You think I'd use AOL?" retorted Mihoshi. "Even I'M not THAT stupid."
"So, what's it say?" asked Yakumo, moving the mouse to the window and clicking.
"'Four volumes and counting,'" read Mihoshi. "I wonder what that means."
"There's an attachment," said Yakumo, pointing to the paper clip.
Mihoshi clicked on the file. "Ooh! Somebody loves me!"
"ILOVEYOU.EXE?" asked Yakumo. "Don't open that! It's a virus!"
"Don't be silly," replied Mihoshi. "If it was a virus, it'd be called VIRUS.EXE or something." She clicked on the icon to open it.
"Wow, they sure fooled me!" said Mihoshi.
"I noticed," Yakumo murmured.
Nidoking's image appeared in the window. "Hey, check me out! I'm a world famous author and I've written a ton of great stories! Read A General Time Paradox, 52 Curses, A Deadly Choice, Jellic's Hateful Quest...."
"Most spammers just send text and porn," said Yakumo. "What's this goof-off think he's doing?"
"In my world, I AM a god!" said Nidoking.
Suddenly, a virtual knife appeared out of nowhere and plunged between Nidoking's ribs. He vanished from the window to be replaced by colored text.
"5UP3|2133T: J00 5UXX0|2Z N1D0D0G!"
Yakumo blinked. "Is that a virus scanner or an RPG?"
"Neither," replied Mihoshi. "I've got so many viruses on this computer that they have to fight for survival. I think a few of them have even evolved into superviruses. It's kind of Darwinian."
"I've never heard of that before," said Yakumo. As he concentrated, he could faintly hear the sounds of swords clashing, guns firing, bombs exploding, and the occasional trumpet of a whoopee cushion.
"It's neat," said Mihoshi proudly. "The little box tells you what's happening inside."
Yakumo squinted at the tiny text. "You know, it kind of looks like a Java IRC user."
"Hey, you're right!" Mihoshi chuckled. "It's cool how he uses numbers to look like letters."
Yakumo sighed. "What am I saying? You can't even SPELL IRC."
Nidoking nodded in satisfaction. "Two episodes later, but I finally managed to fit it in." A knife appeared out of nowhere and stabbed him in the heart.
"|4@ |4@!" laughed 5UP3|2133T.
"RELENTLESS!" the computer announced gleefully.
Xellos pushed the door open and strode into the room without knocking. "Hello, everyone!" he called out jovially.
Five sets of snores greeted him.
"Well, it's good to see you all catching up on your sleep," Xellos said jovially. "A well-rested worker is an efficient worker." His smile seemed to fade just a bit. "But I really don't think work hours are the appropriate time for this sort of thing."
"They're not stimulated enough," replied Bloodberry, the only one in the room still awake. "The endless succession of paperwork has put them to sleep."
Xellos stared at the sign in Genma's paw and saw the written equivalent of a snore. "I see," he muttered jovially. "But you seem to be wide awake yet."
"As an android, I don't need to sleep," replied Bloodberry.
Xellos raised an eyebrow and glanced at the other two androids, both sound asleep.
"Chii is simply imitating Moroboshi," explained Bloodberry, "and Nuku Nuku is programmed to sleep at least fourteen hours per day."
"I see...." Xellos raised his staff over his head. "Everyone, time to wake up!" he shouted jovially, sending arcs of electricity through the bodies of everyone in the room.
"Lum, I'm sorry!" screamed Moroboshi as he awoke.
Rally did her best to push her hair back down. "Is it that hard to get an alarm clock?"
"Wai!" cheered Nuku Nuku. "Watashi ha SUPPAA-CHAAJII!" She leapt over the table in a single bound, spreading her arms and legs wide, shooting sparks of pure genki in all directions.
Xellos eyed the end of his staff curiously. "Did I mistakenly set it on Japanese mode again?" he wondered jovially.
"Just about any shock to her system is enough to break her speech synthesizer," said Bloodberry. "Clearly a defective model."
"Kekkan, kekkan!" sang Nuku Nuku. "Watashi ha kekkan ga aru!"
Moroboshi groaned and covered his head with his arms. "Oh, man. Someone get me something to drink so I can have a hangover."
Nuriko reached across the desk and batted him on the head.
"Thanks, pal," Moroboshi muttered through his massive headache.
Chii groaned sympathetically and covered her head with her arms. "Chii...."
Nuku Nuku circled the room a few times, then came to a Brownian halt beside Xellos. "Xellos-jiichan, DAAAAAAAAAISUKI!" she cried, kissing him repeatedly on the cheek. "Chu, chu, chu!"
"Chu?" asked the Pikachu that Xellos quickly interposed between himself and the hormonal catgirl-android.
"Chu!" Nuku Nuku planted a big, wet one right on its cheek pouch.
"CHUUUUUUUU!" The Pikachu zapped her.
"GUEY!" screamed Nuku Nuku. "Eso duele!"
Xellos blinked in confusion. "Is that some kind of code?" he asked jovially.
"Let me see that." Bloodberry took the Pikachu from Xellos and turned it over. "Here's your problem," she said, pointing to the label on its rump. "'Made in Mexico.'"
"Hecho en Mexico," agreed Nuku Nuku.
"Can you understand what she's saying?" Rally asked Bloodberry.
"Inserta una moneda de veinticinco centavos para iniciar el programa de traduccion," replied Bloodberry, holding her hand out expectantly.
A bead of sweat ran down the back of Rally's head. "What does that mean?"
"She's asking for money," replied Moroboshi.
Rally whirled on him, sending the sweatdrop flying. "YOU understand Spanish?"
"Not a word," said Moroboshi, cowering. "But I can recognize a request for money in any language."
"It's better you don't ask," Nuriko quickly interjected, rubbing the eye that had been the target of the flying sweatdrop. "You know, we need to move somewhere where the anime effects aren't taken so literally."
Genma put down the snoring sign and replaced it with a louder one.
"You can hibernate through anything," grumbled Nuriko.
"Well, we'd better wake him up," said Rally. "We don't want the boss to try it again, do we?"
"Good luck," said Nuriko. "The only thing that will wake him up is food."
"Yo quiero taco de pescado!" cheered Nuku Nuku.
"Can we do something about her?" asked Bloodberry. "Maybe call Dr. Mori?"
Nuku Nuku stuck out her tongue. "Ese rabo verde siempre me esta tocando."
"I'm afraid he's on temporary leave due to budget constraints," Xellos said jovially. "Which, incidentally, is what I came here to talk to all of you about."
"Are we having money problems?" asked Moroboshi.
"That... is a secret!"
Everyone groaned. "I knew there had to be at least one," said Moroboshi.
"As a matter of fact, we were low on funds," Xellos replied jovially. "We had to tap our limited financial resources to bail you and Chii out of jail."
Moroboshi slunk guiltily in his seat, and Chii followed suit.
"We tried to effect a rescue, but our agent couldn't get you out of the cell," Xellos continued jovially.
"I told him he should send me," said Bloodberry. "I could easily have torn the wall down."
"I could do it TWICE as easily," bragged Nuriko.
"Why tear it down when I could just blow it up?" asked Rally.
"Well, we didn't want to attract too much attention," Xellos apologized jovially.
Moroboshi glanced at Genma, who was still too asleep to deny his own involvement. "Then... who the heck did you...?" His eyes fell on the only unaccounted-for occupant of the room. "No... it couldn't be."
Nuku Nuku beamed proudly. "El guardia no se veia contento cuando intente comerme los barrotes."
Xellos grinned sheepishly. "We thought her feline grace would make it easier for her to sneak in and out unnoticed," he explained jovially. "We just forgot to account for her... being Nuku Nuku."
"So he had to bail out all three of you," Bloodberry summed up.
"Exactly," Xellos agreed jovially. "And that's what depleted the rest of our budget. Consequently, we've had to make a few... changes."
Everyone sighed, exhaling mushroom-shaped clouds that Nuku Nuku happily gobbled up.
Xellos cleared his throat and jovially continued. "Namely, we're instituting some transient machinations within the infrastructure of our capital input strategy."
Moroboshi turned to Bloodberry. "Did you understand any of that?" he asked.
"Inserta una moneda de veinticinco centavos para iniciar el programa de traduccion."
"He said we're getting extra money from another source for a while," Nuriko translated.
"Oh, that's good," said Moroboshi. "What are we doing? Bake sale? Lemonade stand?"
"Chii sale?" asked Chii.
"So very, very close," Xellos announced jovially. "But what we're actually doing is some simple taste-testing." He whistled, and Faye swept into the room carrying a tray of glasses filled with a liquid whose color could not be described via any combination of expressions from the Sherwin-Williams Paint Color Guide. "Brownish-yellaquatan charblavender nectareddish gold" will have to suffice, although "burnt umber" probably works just as well.
"You want us to drink that poison?" asked Rally.
"Nobody told you it was poison," replied Xellos with a jovial smile.
"But we recommend eating two tablespoons of baking soda after each sip," said Faye as she set down the tray.
Rally dubiously picked up a glass and eyed it carefully, as if afraid the mere sight of it might be enough to cause her permanent damage. "This stuff can't be safe to drink."
"I don't think our employer would knowingly kill us so haphazardly," said Bloodberry.
"Of course not," agreed Xellos jovially. "I'd use a chainsaw."
"It's really beginning to bug me, the way he says everything in the same tone," said Bloodberry. "I can never tell when he's serious and when he's not."
Xellos' eyebrows lowered. "I'm NEVER serious," he said seriously.
"Well, somebody's got to try it," said Nuriko, picking up one of the glasses.
"No, don't!" shouted Moroboshi. "You're too young to die!"
"Yakumo too Chii to die!"
"Exactly," said Nuriko. He turned and pried Genma's wide mouth open, then poured the drink down his throat. "Drink up, buddy!"
Genma's eyes slowly opened, then instantly perked to their full width. He swallowed.
"Well," asked Moroboshi, "how is it? Feel like a panda-skin rug yet?"
Genma smacked his lips, then turned the snoring sign around. [NOT BAD. KINDA WARM, LIKE CIDER. INTERESTING FLAVOR.]
Rally blinked suspiciously. "Don't tell me he had all that written down BEFORE he woke up."
Bloodberry picked up a second glass, avoiding contact with a thin trail of liquid that oozed up the side of the container and dripped onto the metal tray, quickly eating through both the tray and the table. "I suppose I could give it a try. My food and beverage compartment should be able to handle the most caustic substances."
Bloodberry passed a second glass to Nuku Nuku. "You too, jailbait."
Nuku Nuku guzzled the liquid without looking, while Bloodberry carefully sipped her portion.
"Well?" asked Rally. "Is it safe?"
"Sabe como a menta, con un fuerte gusto a aguacate, y un detaille de asserin," said Nuku Nuku.
"Tastes like battery acid," announced Bloodberry. She licked her lips and downed the entire glass in one gulp. Her eyes glazed over. "Initial analysis reveals no dangerous toxins present. This beverage is deemed safe for human consumption according to local health code."
"That's not saying much," said Nuriko. "According to that code, toilet water is safe for drinking... AFTER it's been used."
Rally's face screwed up in disgust. "You can't be serious."
"What do you think comes out of the taps?"
"That's just disgusting," said Rally.
"Tell me about it," replied Nuriko. "After that, this stuff can't be that bad." He picked up a glass and drained it quickly.
"You've got guts, man," said Moroboshi.
"Chii guts," agreed Chii.
"I HAD guts," Nuriko corrected him. "Then I drank that stuff."
"That bad?" asked Rally.
"The best. You've gotta try it." He pushed the tray toward them, and Moroboshi and Rally reluctantly picked up their glasses.
"Our salary's riding on this, right?" asked Moroboshi.
"We can leave it at that for now," Xellos confirmed jovially.
Moroboshi took a deep breath and slugged it at once. Chii spilled hers all over her face as she forgot to open her mouth, but most of it managed to worm its way down her throat of its own accord. Rally was the last to brave tasting her serving, but once she'd raised the glass to her lips, she didn't lower it until it was empty.
"That was strangely satisfying," she announced as she returned the glass to the tray.
"Well, splendid!" Xellos cheered jovially. "Let me know when the love potion kicks in, and I'll start taking notes."
"LOVE POTION?!" shouted everyone who was capable of English speech.
"Well, don't look at me!" warned Xellos jovially. "You don't want me to be the object of your undying affection, do you?"
"God no!" shouted Nuriko, quickly fixing his vision straight ahead.
Rally squeezed her eyes tightly closed. "Everyone, close your eyes and don't look at anything!"
"Too late," said Nuriko.
Rally and Moroboshi cast him a fearful glance. "What do you mean?" asked Moroboshi.
Rally said nothing, as her eyes had turned into hearts. "Oh, you wonderful man...."
Moroboshi turned to Rally. "That's not like you, Ral-" He froze, and tiny hearts circled his head.
Nuku Nuku curiously poked one of the hearts with her finger, causing it to pop. But it was only one of the thousands that were quickly filling the room as the three lovestruck fools stared at each other.
"Rally!" cried Moroboshi.
"Nuriko!" cried Rally.
"Ataru darling!" cried Nuriko.
All three of them simultaneously leapt with their arms outstretched to hug the space where the other had been. Rally and Nuriko landed face first on the table, while Moroboshi got a faceful of Rally's chair.
"It's so warm," he cooed happily. "And it still smells like her."
Bloodberry looked down at him and shook her head disapprovingly.
Xellos cocked his head curiously. "And what about you, Bloodberry?" he asked jovially. "Do you feel amorous at all?"
"No," she replied sharply.
Xellos glanced at the other two androids. Chii had her face in Nuriko's seat, but didn't appear to be enjoying it much, while Nuku Nuku bounced happily on a pile of cartoon hearts. "None of you are affected by the love potion?" he asked with jovial concern.
"Ya amo a todos, asi que tu pocion no me afectara," announced Nuku Nuku proudly.
"I don't think the potion will have any effect on androids," explained Bloodberry.
"Indeed," said Xellos jovially. "Dr. Mori isn't going to be happy about this...."
"You said he'd been laid off," Bloodberry reminded him.
"So I did," Xellos noted jovially.
Rally finally came to her senses enough to wrap an arm around Nuriko's waist in what passed for a hug. Moroboshi contended himself with using Rally's buttocks as a pillow and trying to ignore what Nuriko's hands were doing under the table.
"Oh well," Xellos sighed jovially. "One love triangle should be enough entertainment."
[I DON'T FEEL ANYTHING EITHER,] said Genma. Everyone ignored him as usual.
Nuku Nuku nuzzled Xellos' leg. "A pesar de todo, aun amo a mi tio Xellos."
Xellos pounded her on the head. "I've had more than enough of that," he said impatiently.
"choSuvchugh 'oy'lIj Daghur neH," groaned Nuku Nuku.
Satisfied, Xellos wiped his hands. "There. That's fixed her," he announced jovially as he left the room.
Nuku Nuku staggered. "Ihr Lieben, lasst euch durch die Schmerz nicht befremden, die euch widerfahrt zu eurer Versuchung, als widerfuhre euch etwas Seltsames."
"I doubt she'll be of much use to us from now on," said Bloodberry. "As if she was before." She looked down at the three lovebirds, who were now crawling in circles trying to hug each other without being hugged in turn. "She'll fit right in."
"Chii!" agreed Chii.
Yakumo turned on the TV and leapt across the room into the easy chair. "There has to be something on about how to deal with a crazy woman," he decided.
The picture slowly resolved into an infomercial. "This is the fifth book of Excel Saga," announced Nidoking. "I've read it. Have you?"
"Wait a second," said Yakumo. "Didn't he just show up in our computer saying he'd finished book four?"
"Writing's been slow," explained Nidoking. "In my defense, I have written a few future scenes of this chapter, and I've got a good chunk of the next chapter plotted."
"Am I in it?" asked Yakumo.
"Actually, no," replied Nidoking.
"Then take your time." Yakumo lounged. "So, any advice for dealing with someone who's gone completely crazy?"
"Turn off the TV so they stop talking to it," said Nidoking. He turned the power knob and disappeared as the screen went blank.
Mihoshi skipped into the room and tacked a large sheet of pink wallpaper to one of the walls.
"Mihoshi, what exactly do you think you're doing?" asked Yakumo. "For one thing, you're supposed to glue that to the wall."
"I finished the last of the glue yesterday with some spaghetti," replied Mihoshi. She licked a large cartoon heart and pasted it onto the paper.
"That is so girly," said Yakumo. "Why don't you decorate your own room?"
"This IS my room," Mihoshi pointed out. "It's a one-room apartment."
"Then what room did you skip in from?" asked Yakumo.
Mihoshi finished pasting her hearts onto the paper and turned around, batting her eyelashes. "Well, what do you think?" she asked. "Don't I look beautiful?"
Yakumo finally turned around to see Mihoshi standing in front of a sparkling pink background, surrounded by floating hearts.
Mihoshi set her jaw. "Then I'll have to use brute force!" She leapt onto Yakumo's lap, and before he could react, kissed him squarely on the lips. "There! Now how do you feel?"
Yakumo melted into a puddle on the floor. Once he'd successfully escaped Mihoshi's grip, he oozed into the bathroom, regained his form, and threw up.
Mihoshi frowned. "I KNEW he was sneaking bites of my spaghetti!"
She crossed the room and stepped into the bathroom to find Yakumo brushing his teeth. "Geez, Mihoshi, what did you do that for?" he demanded.
"Oh, that reminds me!" said Mihoshi. "I was doing the spring cleaning today, but I couldn't find the toilet brush, so I had to use your toothbrush instead."
Yakumo froze. "You used my toothbrush to clean the toilet?"
"No, silly. To brush my teeth!"
Yakumo spat profusely.
"Yeah, it got pretty yucky," said Mihoshi. "I couldn't find any dish soap to rinse it with, so I used -"
"I don't even want to know," Yakumo quickly interrupted. "But what does brushing your teeth have to do with spring cleaning?" He paused. "Wait, I don't want to know that either."
"For a guy who doesn't want to know anything, you sure ask a lot of questions," Mihoshi noted.
"For a girl who's incredibly stupid, you sure... um... don't inspire a punchline," retorted Yakumo.
Mihoshi threw her arms around him in a hug. "That's my Yacchan!"
Yakumo felt the urge to be sick again. "You know what, author guy? You just keep slacking up there."
"No way!" said Nidoking. "This stuff is inspiring! It practically writes itself!"
"Yacchan, the TV turned itself on," purred Mihoshi. "I think it's trying to tell us something."
"I want to die," groaned Yakumo. "Again."
Nidoking closed the book and sighed. "Ahh... that Excel. Always good for a laugh." He cheerily deposited it in the garbage can and made a beeline for the door.
An imposing figure stood in his way. "Was that the sixth book of Excel Saga?" she demanded.
Nidoking paled. "Oh dear."
"Have you no concept of time?" shouted Sailor Pluto. "You'd just finished the fifth book when you wrote the last scene! At this rate, it'll be years before you finish this episode! And heaven forbid the manga should run out before you find the inspiration for another scene!"
"I've been working on a lot of things," Nidoking said slyly, pushing his glasses up with his middle finger. He produced a computer printout and handed it to her.
Pluto's eyes widened as she read it. "You can't be serious... do you actually intend to -?"
"I do," he replied. "I have big plans for the next episode, as you can see. Which makes it all the more important that I finish this one quickly, although not so quickly that I have to start that plan while it's still half-formed."
"It's beautiful! I could hug you!" She proceeded to do just that. "I love you, you wonderful man!"
Nidoking pursed his lips for the expected kiss, but received only a slap in the face.
"That whole scene just to get you back in the habit?" asked Fujisawa.
"Shut up and pour me another drink," ordered Nidoking as he sat back down at the bar. Fujisawa obligingly filled a glass, which Nidoking pressed against the red handprint on his cheek. Then he downed the glass in one gulp.
"I thought you didn't drink," said Fujisawa.
"Oh, yeah. Damn." Nidoking spun around twice and collapsed.
Yurika walked into the bar and shrieked as she saw him splayed on the floor. "Oh, my poor Nido! Who could have done such a horrible thing to you?" She grabbed him and held him tight, pressing his face into her chest.
Nidoking slammed his palm on the counter. "Barkeep, another!"
"Oh, a beer!" said Yurika. "That will go well with the soup I made for you!"
Nidoking grabbed the glass and splashed its contents in her face, then bolted out the door as she tried to wipe it off.
Yakumo had to cover his ears as he reentered the apartment. It did little to shut out the loud, monotonous drone coming from the TV. "MIHOSHI!" he shouted over the din. "WHAT IS THAT ANNOYING NOISE?"
"I'm watching EBS," she replied in a normal voice that somehow managed to be audible over the beep.
"EBS? The Emergency Broadcast System?"
"Yeah. People hate it so much that they made a new channel so that they wouldn't have to interrupt regular programming to run their tests."
Yakumo nearly missed a step and fell into the apartment below. "And people actually WATCH this?"
"You never know what'll happen next!" she replied excitedly.
"See? Wasn't that exciting?" asked Mihoshi.
The stump of Yakumo's neck sprayed a faint "Riveting."
Mihoshi shook her head disapprovingly. "You don't look so good, Yacchan. You need to get out and get some fresh air."
Yakumo's head regrew like an inflating balloon. "I was just outside getting the mail." He handed her a postcard. "Lord Clef's coming back tonight."
"Where did he go?" asked Mihoshi.
"The postcard's from Montgomery, Alabama," Yakumo pointed out.
Mihoshi nodded knowledgeably. "No idea, then."
"We'd better have this place cleaned up before he gets here," said Yakumo, noting the haphazard decorations. "What the heck have you been doing, anyway? This place is even more full of random colors and streamers and little paper hearts and... what the heck are you doing with that?"
Mihoshi waved the heart-shaped wand above her head. "MIHOSHI TRANSFORMATION THINGY PHRASE THING!" she shouted. Her clothes shattered into pieces.
Yakumo covered his eyes just a few seconds too late. "I'm blind!" he cried.
"You just have your hands over your eyes, silly," said Mihoshi.
"Are you done?" asked Yakumo.
"Hang on. These stupid snaps never work properly. I always have to... ugh! There!" Yakumo hesitantly opened his eyes and saw Mihoshi striking a pose in a backwards sailor uniform. "I'm the beautiful sailor-suited girl, Sailor Mihoshi! I shall turn into Lord Clef and punish dirt and grime!"
"Shouldn't that be 'in the name of Lord Clef'?" asked Yakumo.
"They never gave Sasami a hard time," Sailor Mihoshi said with a glower.
Yakumo sighed. "Fine. I assume you've got some kind of magical cleaning power that's going to get rid of this mess?"
"What kind of magical girl would I be if I didn't have that?"
"A sensible one."
Sailor Mihoshi ignored him as usual. "TORNADO OF CLEANING THINGS UP BEFORE CLEF GETS HOME!" The air around her began to swirl faster and faster, becoming a funnel that sucked in the streamers, the glitter, the paper cutouts, the chair, the TV, the remaining floor tiles, three Pikachus, and a black hole that had just opened in the middle of the apartment.
Sailor Mihoshi slammed the front door closed from the outside and leaned against it heavily, panting. "Wow! Who would have guessed that a tornado would make things even messier?"
There was no answer.
"Oops! I didn't lock Yacchan in there with the tornado, did I?"
"No," said Yakumo. "I just felt silence was the only way to counterpoint a remark like that."
Sailor Mihoshi blinked vacantly. "See? I told you being outside would be good for you!"
Yakumo remained silent.
"Hey, want to go somewhere else?" she asked.
Yakumo held up a sign. [WHY NOT?]
"Great! It'll be our firstest ever date!"
"Date? I never said anything about a -!"
She looped her arm around his elbow and dragged him away. Meanwhile, the tornado continued to rage behind the closed door.
"Help!" Tomoyo weakly called out from within the apartment. "Anybody? I think I'm in a Nidoking fanfic again!"
Bloodberry sighed. Somehow, they'd managed to disengage the three twisted lovers long enough to get out of the building and get their mission underway. However, two things still hampered their chances of getting anything accomplished.
"Rally Vincent!" shouted Moroboshi, leaping toward the object of his affection with his arms outstretched. Rally held him at arm's length easily until he realized the futility of his efforts and gave up.
"Nuriko!" shouted Rally, leaping toward the object of her affection with her arms outstretched. Nuriko held her at arm's length easily until she realized the futility of her efforts and gave up.
"Ataru darling!" shouted Nuriko, leaping toward the object of his affection with his arms outstretched. Moroboshi held him at arm's length easily until Nuriko overcame what little force he could produce and grabbed him in a bear hug, crushing the interposed arm and squeezing the air from his lungs.
Bloodberry grabbed his arm. "Stop that! You'll crush him! And as pleasant as the idea might be...."
"He'll just come right back to life," Nuriko reminded her.
"No, you're thinking of Yakumo," said Bloodberry.
"Yakumo!" parroted Chii.
Bloodberry sighed.
Then there was the second problem... Xellos hadn't actually told them what they were supposed to be doing. He hadn't even deigned to tell them it was a secret. He just wanted them out in public, possibly to see whether anything could trigger the love potion's effect on the androids. Bloodberry wouldn't bet on it... she hadn't been able to avoid looking at the abundance of appliances and machines that littered F City, F Prefecture like pieces of metal and circuitry arranged into functional formations, but hadn't felt the slightest stir of desire from even the sleekest car or the slenderest parking meter. Her eye was drawn to the window of a hardware store displaying a full line of enticing automatic screwdrivers... nothing.
"Nuku Nuku, have you felt any unusual desires toward any objects we've seen?" she asked casually.
"Qu'est-ce que c'est?" asked Nuku Nuku, unwrapping her legs from around the telephone pole she'd been acting rather amorous toward.
Bloodberry palmed her forehead. "I forgot. No desires are unusual for you."
"Comme je disais, j'aime tout le monde!"
Bloodberry didn't even bother asking Chii, who was attempting to glomp Rally. "My life just doesn't work anymore," she decided.
"Excuse me," a voice spoke up from near her feet. "Could you step off my arm and hand it to me?"
Bloodberry sighed again. "That has to be the most normal request I've heard all year." She stepped from the disembodied arm onto the nearby recently re-embodied head and slid the appendage toward the rest of its owner.
"Nidoking has finished the seventh book," said Chii.
Bloodberry blinked. "What are you talking about?" she asked.
Chii pointed to the newsbox at the curb. "He recommends it to all his fans."
Bloodberry stepped off the prone figure and peered through the glass, reading the even smaller byline. "'"I couldn't think of a distraction to get Bloodberry to step off the guy without ruining the comic timing, and it was just what I needed," said the terminally slow author.' What guy?"
"The herald speaks of none other than me!" shouted the man as he arose. "I, Damuramu, am once again whole and ready to take my revenge upon that annoying blonde girl and her friend, and that stupid dog, and the little girl with the glasses, and especially that green guy with the sword!" He clenched his fist. "Oooh... Damuramu will ever regret meeting him!"
At that moment, something inside Bloodberry snapped. Dr. Mori would eventually grow to regret having secured her insanity tolerance circuit in place with rubber bands. "I don't care," she said definitively. "I'm sick of all the weirdness. I don't care who created me and who controls the atomic bomb in my stomach cavity. I'm leaving this group and this crazy situation and never looking back." She sighed happily. "There. I said it. And it feels good."
Damuramu blinked rapidly. "You're a very strange woman."
"No, I'm not! I'm perfectly normal, except for being an android! Don't you see what being with these people has done to me? I'm a wreck! But now, thanks to you, the straw that broke the camel's back, I've finally seen the light." She turned around and shook Damuramu's hand. "Thank you. You've set me fr-"
Damuramu took an uneasy step backward. "You seem to be... staring at Damuramu." He stood upright and flexed his pectorals with the grating noise of metal rubbing. "Yes! Admire Damuramu's manly physique!"
Bloodberry melted. "Oh, you wonderful man!"
Nuku Nuku leapt at Damuramu with her arms wide open and hugged him energetically. "Ti amo piu di intero mondo!" She rubbed her face vigorously against him. "Vostro corpo metallico raspa mia pelle fragile!"
Chii solemnly wrapped her arms around Damuramu's waist, her face giving no indication that she enjoyed it. "Love."
A beam of light shone down upon him from the heavens. "Ah, Damuramu's day has finally come! I have become the woman magnet!" He pointed into the sky. "Come, my nubile love-slaves! Let us go and vanquish the evil blonde woman and her friend who dies all the time!"
"Not another woman, darling!" protested Bloodberry. "You must stay here and pleasure us!"
Damuramu's tiny brain turned over in his ample noggin as he sought to reconcile his situation with his sworn mission. "But... my revenge! The blonde woman! The carrot-nosed dog!"
"Yakumo," said Chii, rubbing her cheek on Damuramu's groin.
"Exactly! Him too! But... women... draining Damuramu's resolve...."
"Oh, isn't that cute?" said Rally. "Aren't they just the most adorable sight you ever saw?" She gave Nuriko a big hug. "Except for us, of course."
"Damuramu is NOT adorable!" Damuramu shouted, throwing all three androids away with a powerful gesture. "I'm sorry, ladies, but my revenge must come first! Then, if you're still inexplicably attracted to me, we can make love all you want, I promise!" He took one last look at the three of them, splayed in provocative poses on the pavement, and swallowed hard. "Damuramu will DEFINITELY ever regret this!" he shouted as he turned and ran away.
Bloodberry sat up. "Oh, what a cruel master love turns out to be!"
Nuku Nuku stuck out her tongue. "Zijn bekken moet van metaal worden gemaakt."
"His pelvis WAS made out of metal," replied Bloodberry. "But that still doesn't give him the right to run away from us!"
"Come on, you two," said Bloodberry determinedly. "We've got a man to woo."
Genma watched the androids run off after the object of their affection and scratched his head with the corner of a sign.
[3) PUT IT IN]
He shrugged and opted for choice 4 - turning around, walking in a random direction, and doing his best to forget the whole crazy mess.
RALLY: Oh, Nuriko!
NURIKO: Oh, Ataru darling!
MOROBOSHI: Oh, my aching spine!


MAN'S VOICE: They know we're a threat to them. That's why they all go to such lengths to prove that they're better than us. And you know something? They're right. They ARE better than us. They spend billions of dollars making a superior product and pass that expense on to you, the consumer. Maybe our products aren't the best... but they're good enough. And we make everything from motor oil to baby food at the same affordable prices. After all, we don't need to advertise... everyone else is doing it for us, so we can save that money to bring you the best product we can at prices to beat the pants off the competition. But don't take our word for it... just watch THEIR commercials. Your budget will thank you... and so will we.

BRAND X: The best savings. Second best at everything else.


A powerful demon is stalking the women of Nerima and kidnapping them one by one...

> "What have you done with Ukyo?" demanded Ranma. "Where is she?"
> "She's in a place you cannot reach," replied the demon. "But don't worry. You may see her again, once
> my task is done."
> "What do you mean, 'may' see her again? What are you going to do to her?"
> The demon shook its head. "I can't tell you that. But I can assure you that her last thoughts will be of
> you."

No one can stand up to its awesome fighting power...

> "I've heard of this 'Ultimate Darkness' before," said Happosai. "It's not just nasty... it's the final word in
> the art of combat. A master of Ultimate Darkness can counter almost any technique you could throw at
> them... from ordinary punches to ki blasts and beyond. And if you somehow manage to come up with a
> completely new technique unlike anything ever seen before that they can't counter... seeing it just once is
> enough for them to figure out an unstoppable counter-technique."

And in the end, Ranma will have to make the most difficult choice of his life... and the last choice for three women who love him...

> "You have never taken the choice seriously," said the voice, with just a hint of anger. "Every time you are
> faced with the choice, you avoid it, knowing that you can change your mind at any time. Well, this time,
> the choice will be final. You will choose one of the four to become your true fiancée. That one will be
> released unharmed. And just to prevent you from going back on your word, the other three will die."

Ranma 1/2: A Deadly Choice


MIHOSHI: I won't buy Brand X products because they don't advertise on EBS!

"Say, Yacchan?"
Yakumo sighed in exasperation. "What, Mihoshi?"
"Where do people go when they die?"
"Why are you asking m- oh."
"Well, where do they go?"
"Most people go to a place called heaven," he replied in a slow, pedantic tone. "It's a wonderful place where you can do all the fun things you want and nobody bothers you with stupid questions."
"Yay!" cheered Mihoshi. "Will I get to go there?"
"No. That's why it's heaven."
"Oh." She seemed disappointed, but quickly perked up. "What about animals?"
"What about animals?"
"Do the puppies and kitties and cowies go to heaven too?"
"I like cows."
Yakumo sighed again. "Well, dogs probably go to dog heaven, and cats go to cat heaven. But cows are different. When cows die, they go to Burger Heaven." He chuckled at his own joke.
"Ooh! I want to go to Burger Heaven!"
"You won't see any cows there," he warned her.
"I know. I'm just hungry. I want a hamburger."
A man wearing an expensive suit and carrying an enormous cross wrapped in cloth came to a stop in front of them. "Excuse me, kids. Mind if I annoy you for a few hours talking about religion?"
"I don't talk about religion with anyone," said Yakumo. "It's against my religion."
The man swung the cross around, resting the longest leg on the ground, and leaned against it. "But don't you ever wonder what'll happen to you after you die?"
Yakumo couldn't restrain his laughter.
The priest reached under the cloth and pulled out a pair of pistols, filling Yakumo with holes before he could die enough to stop laughing. "We don't joke about religion here, son," he said menacingly.
"Isn't there something in the Bible that says you're not supposed to kill people?" asked Mihoshi.
"Wouldn't know," replied the priest as he lit a cigarette. "Haven't read it."
Mihoshi blinked. "What kind of priest are you, anyway?"
He leaned down and spoke right to her face. "You see this giant cross I carry around, girly? You see this collar? You see my mini-confessional and supply of wine?"
"Sacramental wine?" Mihoshi guessed.
"Not that I'm aware." He took a swig from the glass bottle at his hip before continuing. "Doesn't all that stuff tell you who I am?"
"No," replied Mihoshi. "But that name tag says you're Nicholas Wolfwood from the asylum down the road."
"No, it says 'traveling priest'," he corrected her. "The Y is silent."
Mihoshi nodded. "Oh, you're right. Say, do you know where I can get a bigger pen?"
Wolfwood scratched his head. "Um... by the grace of our Lord, all things are possible."
Mihoshi huffed angrily. "You could have just said no." She reached down and hauled Yakumo to his feet. "Come on, Yacchan. We're still on our date."
"For the last time, it's not a date," Yakumo insisted.
Wolfwood gibbered. "B-b-but... he was dead! And he came back to life! That's impossible!"
"What religion did you say you believed in again?" asked Yakumo.
"Forget about him," urged Mihoshi. "Let's just go to Burger Heaven."
Wolfwood raised a trembling finger to point at them. "Y-you're demons! Heaven is the one place you'll never go!"
Mihoshi blinked. "Is that Mad Cow Disease going around again? I just stopped paying attention long ago because there's always SOME health hazard scaring people."
"It's you, Mihoshi," said Yakumo. "You need to learn to stop gesturing with your gun."
Mihoshi looked down at her smoking pistol and at Wolfwood, who was cowering behind the cross whose wrap now had a large burn mark. "Oops."
"That's a laser pistol, isn't it? What's with the smoke?"
Mihoshi shrugged. "Every electronic device does that when I use it. I thought it was those lecterns moving around and bumping into each other."
"You people are crazy!" shouted Wolfwood. He hefted his cross onto his shoulder and scrambled back over the wall into the grounds of the asylum.
"Any idea what that was all about?" asked Yakumo.
"Nope," replied Mihoshi. "But Nidoking didn't finish reading a book of Excel Saga in the middle of the scene, so I'm not going to complain." She trotted off with a spring in her step, and Yakumo followed warily, wondering how the world continued to exist after the last bit of sense had been removed.
Damuramu crouched in the alley beside the Burger Heaven and peered around the corner. "Excellent! My advanced sensors tell me that the blonde woman and her boyfriend are coming this way! They told me I was a fool to have most of my brain removed to make room for the extra circuitry, but I'll show THEM who's only got two thirty-sevenths of a brain!"
A finger tapped him on the shoulder. "Yoohoo, lover boy!"
Damuramu spun around to face Bloodberry, who waved a piece of paper in his face. "I've got our marriage certificate right here. All you need to do is sign it and we're husband and wife!"
Damuramu went pale. "I... uh... er...." He cleared his throat. "Damuramu regrets to inform you that he doesn't have a pen!"
Bloodberry held up a pen. "I've got one! It's a Mitsubishi!"
Damuramu grabbed the pen and jammed it up her nose, then quickly peeked around the corner again. As he feared, there was no sign of his prey. "Dammit!" he shouted. "I've lost sight of them!" He blinked his advanced sensors several times before turning back to the rather irate android breathing ink down his neck. "My apologies, Ma'am. Damuramu was stalking some very slippery individuals..."
Bloodberry smiled sweetly and pulled the pen out of her nose. "It's okay. It still writes!" She offered him the pen and paper again. "Give it a try!"
Damuramu screamed and fled the alley.

Mitsubishi pens - they still write, even after being jammed up an android's nose.


SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Jamming pens up your nose is hazardous. It can lead to infection, hemorrhages, brain damage (which is probably already present if you're jamming a pen up your nose), and the pen will probably no longer work (unless it's a Mitsubishi pen). So don't do it.

Mihoshi stepped up to the counter and smiled at the cashier. "Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame-seed bun."
The cashier smiled back. "Your way, right away!"
Mihoshi prodded Yakumo with an elbow, snapping him out of his reverie. He pointed to the list of low, low prices. "It's how the last place you'd go for a burger will become the first," he noted aloud.
"The only difference you'll notice is the price," said the cashier.
Yakumo flashed her a reluctant smile. "Hold the pickles, hold the lettuce."
"Special orders don't upset us," agreed the cashier with a nod. She grabbed a pair of hamburgers from the warmer and dropped them onto a tray. "Add fries and a Dr Pepper and make it a meal," she suggested.
"Got milk?" he asked.
She nodded. "It does a body good!"
Yakumo pulled out his wallet and watched as a moth flew out of it. He dejectedly reached in and pulled out a lone dollar bill.
"Got a buck? You're in luck!" replied the cashier, adding fries and two cups to the tray and taking his money.
"You know, you can get all calls up to twenty minutes for only ninety-nine cents," Yakumo pointed out.
The cashier stared at him as if trying to figure out what drugs he was on and how much trouble she'd be in if she slipped some into the burgers.
Mihoshi grabbed his arm and dragged him away from the counter, barely leaving him enough time to grab the tray. "South of the border!" she ordered him, pulling him over the line that separated the two halves of the restaurant.
They chose a table and sat down to unwrap their sandwiches. Mihoshi stuck out a tongue disgustedly at her flimsy burger. "Where's the beef?" she demanded.
"Oklahoma," Yakumo replied smoothly.
Mihoshi sighed. "I'm tired of the same old burgers."
"Eet mor chikin," suggested Yakumo. Mihoshi cocked her head and stared at him. He shrugged and pointed at her burger. "You gotta eat."
Mihoshi picked it up and took a big bite. "Mmm, mmm, good!"
Yakumo nodded. "I'm lovin' it!"
A man walked past the table and tripped over Mihoshi's foot, nearly dropping his pizza. "It's not delivery; it's DiGiorno," he explained as he caught his balance.
"I'M FULL!" shouted someone else from across the restaurant.
The manager approached the cashier and pointed to the clock. "Have you had your break today?" he asked her.
"Give me a break," she requested.
The door opened, and Wolfwood stormed into the restaurant. "I'm coocoo for Cocoa Puffs!" He stormed out again.
Mihoshi and Yakumo shrugged in unison and bit into their burgers again. "That's 100% Angus Beef," said Yakumo.
Mihoshi grabbed some fries and shoved them in her mouth, then disgustedly picked up her napkin and wiped her hands. "Greasy, not fun, uh-uh!"
"Don't squeeze the Charmin!" warned the man in the booth behind her.
Yakumo slowly shook his head. "All right, Mihoshi, what the hell's going on? Why is everyone here talking in slogans, and why am I going along with it?"
A buzzer sounded in the distance.
Mihoshi groaned. "You just know how to ruin everything, don't you?" She abruptly stood up and grabbed him by the arm. "Come on, spoilsport. You're taking me to the beach to make it up to me."
"The beach? What? Make what up? What's going on?"
Mihoshi didn't say a word.
"Aren't we at least going to finish eating?" asked Yakumo.
"We love to see you smile," said the cashier as they left.
"Shove it," said Yakumo.
The seaside air was so salty that Yakumo could feel his arteries clogging as he breathed. He stared out over the ocean, taking in its heady aroma as the seagulls flew overhead, cawing quietly. It was a serene, romantic scene, so he had to act quickly to defuse it. "So why are we at the beach, exactly?"
Mihoshi posed, displaying her swimsuit to full effect. "Duh! So I can show off a little skin!"
Yakumo quickly looked away. "Does it have to be yours?"
Mihoshi patted herself down. "I don't think I have any other skin to show." She shrugged. "Maybe it'll look different when I get wet and my clothes get all clingy."
Yakumo caught himself picturing it and immediately banished the horrible mental image. "I really don't think that's a good idea," he warned her. "We're not supposed to swim for half an hour after eating."
"It's fine," said Mihoshi. "At the pace Nidoking's been writing, he probably finished that scene WAY more than half an hour ago."
"What does that have to do with any-?" Yakumo asked as a giant tentacle reached up from the ocean, wrapped around him, and pulled him into the water.
"I don't think anything around here has much to do with anything else, really," said Mihoshi. "Stuff just happens."
A large bubble broke the still surface of the water, emitting a weak "Help!" It was followed shortly by a "me!"
"That's weird," said Mihoshi. "Shouldn't there be waves if we're at the beach?"
Another bubble spat an emphatic "You idiot!"
"Maybe you should go save him," suggested Marin.
Mihoshi looked down. "Hey, that's a cute swimsuit."
Marin spun around happily. "I just got it. I had to come to the beach to show it off."
"See? YOU understand! Why doesn't Yakumo get it?"
"Because he's probably dead by now," said Marin.
"It's okay," said Mihoshi. "He'll come back to life in a bit."
"But he'll be underwater," Marin pointed out.
"He'll drown."
"And he'll come back to life."
"He'll drown again."
"And he'll come back to life again."
"Still underwater."
Marin sighed heavily. "He'll just keep drowning every time he comes back to life. Over and over again, for all eternity."
Mihoshi shrugged. "Well, that's not so bad, is it?"
"Are you kidding? It's like something out of an Edgar Allan Poe story!"
Mihoshi screamed. "Books! Oh no! My poor Yacchan!"
The nonexistent surf continued to roar.
"Well?" said Marin at last. "Aren't you going to save him?"
"No way!" said Mihoshi. "You said there are books down there!"
Marin slapped her forehead. "Books in the ocean? Are you really that stupid?"
"They make books out of cardboard too," Mihoshi replied defensively. "Those are the ones I like. They have pictures and dogs named Clifford."
"But what about Yakumo?" asked Marin.
"He's never been in a book," retorted Mihoshi. "Who'd write about a guy like Yakumo?"
Somewhere far away, Yuuzou Takada sneezed violently.
A bright gleam from farther up the beach shone in Mihoshi's eyes, blinding her. But she still recognized the voice that came from the same direction. "Aha! I found you at last!"
Mihoshi gasped. "Not that metal guy again!" She considered her options and pinched her nose shut. "Don't worry, Yakumo! I'm coming!" She leapt into the water with a huge splash.
"You won't get away that easily!" shouted Damuramu, diving in after her.
Marin stared and shook her head. "You know, I could have had Cell cut him up again and then save Yakumo for you." Shrugging, she walked back up the beach, stopping to pick up cans and six-pack rings and throw them into the water as she went.
"I can't imagine why we didn't think of having a three-way before!" exclaimed Nuriko.
"It's the most wonderful feeling in the world, having a three-way!" exclaimed Rally.
"We should have had a three-way a long time ago!" exclaimed Moroboshi.
The salesman cleared his throat. "Have you finished deciding on a cellular phone plan yet?" he asked casually.
Nuriko stared at him.
Rally stared at him.
Moroboshi stared at him.
"And do please disentangle yourselves and put your clothes back on," he continued. "There are hotels for that sort of thing."
"What?" Nidoking asked innocently. "You didn't REALLY think they were talking about phones, did you? This is Excel Saga!"
Someone walked up and stabbed him in the chest. "74573 |V|41 8|_4D3!"
Yurika knelt beside him. "I finally found you!"
"Yeah, you did," Nidoking wheezed. "Too bad I'm about to die, or I'd have some sort of... relationship-thingy... with you."
"Good thing I brought some leeks!" said Yurika. "They're exactly what you need for this sort of disease!" She pulled the knife out of his chest and proceeded to slice a pair of leeks with the bloody blade, then scooped them into her bowl of soup. "There you go! Drink up!"
The door opened, and Officer Natsumi stormed through with her gun drawn. "I got a report of a disturbance in here, and...." She trailed off as she saw Yurika hunched over Nidoking holding a bloody knife, the pile of Rally, Nuriko, and Moroboshi, and a random Pikachu assaulting a hapless customer at the far end of the store. She sighed. "Man, I pick the worst days to be on duty."
Yakumo slowly awoke, feeling like he was floating. His body felt as light as a feather, and he was surrounded by water. It was just like being back in the womb. "Weird," he thought to himself. "It's just what I used to think death was like before it became part of my everyday life."
Then he realized that he was, in fact, underwater, and that he hadn't inhaled for well over a minute. He struggled to escape the clutches of the giant octopus that held him captive, but that just prompted the mollusk to squeeze a bit harder, forcing what little air remained out of Yakumo's lungs.
It was the shortest life he'd ever lived.
A man-shaped hunk of rusty metal landed on the ocean floor next to him. "Damuramu forgot that his metal body rusts in salt water," it announced. "Damuramu shall ever regret this."
A lithe figure with a mermaid's tail swam up to him and offered him a piece of paper and a pen. "Sua assinatura e tudo que eu quero!" Nuku Nuku pressed the pen into his hand and held the paper before him eagerly.
Damuramu forced his finger to slide up the length of the pen and flip the ink release lever, spraying a black cloud into the surrounding water.
Nuku Nuku quickly yanked the paper away before the ink could ruin it. "Baka! Nani suru tsumori yo!"
Yakumo drowned.
Nuku Nuku angrily flapped her tail, dispersing the cloud of ink, then smiled. "It's okay," she announced. "It'll still write!" She jabbed the pen into the octopus and pulled the lever, filling it with a full fountain of octopus ink. She pulled it out, and the octopus quickly deflated, releasing its hold on Yakumo, who slowly dead-man floated toward the surface.
She traced across the surface of the paper with the refilled pen, producing a black mark, then happily offered the implement to the rusted Damuramu again, holding a finger over the ink release lever.
Damuramu whimpered.

Mitsubishi pens: They still write, even if they run out of ink underwater.

Tears poured from Mihoshi's eyes like twin waterfalls as she gazed out over the endless ocean. "Oh, Yakumo... if only I knew how to swim, I wouldn't have been thrown back to the shore like a piece of driftwood on the never-ending tide. I just can't bear the thought of you alone down there, drowning over and over in an ocean full of Clifford books!"
Yakumo's bloated body bobbed to the surface.
Mihoshi blinked. "Oh well. Time to save you, I suppose!" She waded into the ocean and dragged Yakumo up onto the beach, then flipped him onto his back and recoiled. "Ewwwwww! You're all blue and nasty! How is this supposed to be romantic?" Then she shrugged and bent down to press her lips to his.
Yakumo instantly awoke. "Mihoshi!" He coughed and sat up. "The beach... did you save me?"
"I guess so," said Mihoshi, smiling at him. "How are you feeling?"
Yakumo gazed into her eyes as the setting sun framed her in lavender. "I'm fine," he said. "Thanks to you, I suppose. But you really didn't need to give me CPR."
"What's a CPR?" asked Mihoshi. "I just wanted to kiss you while you couldn't run away!"
Yakumo glared indignantly at her. The sun, feeling the effects of the glower, instantly dropped below the horizon to hide under the blanket of night.
"Ooh, look!" shouted Mihoshi. "It's a bottle of paper!" She ran to the water's edge and fished the bottle out of the ocean.
"Just throw it back," said Yakumo. "Some schlub is lost on a desert island somewhere and wants help. Let someone with a boat find it."
The ground opened under Yakumo, dropping him deep into the Earth along with enough beach sand to bury him.
"I think it's from Lord Clef," said Mihoshi.
Yakumo clawed his way to the surface. "You think?"
"I just said that." Mihoshi uncorked the bottle and retrieved the note. "Oh, this paper's no good. Someone's already used it."
"What does the note say?" asked Yakumo.
Mihoshi stared at it. "It's not saying anything," she determined at last. "I think we'll have to read it."
Yakumo grabbed the note and read it while he shook the sand out of his shorts. "'I'm coming home soon. Make sure the apartment is clean for me, and don't forget to bring a bottle of water. - Clef'"
Mihoshi dunked the bottle in the ocean. "One bottle of water, all set!"
Yakumo sighed. "I'll go buy the water, Mihoshi. You just go get the apartment ready." He picked up a pen that had floated to the surface and wrote a quick set of instructions for her. "There. Think you can handle that?"
Mihoshi read the note and saluted. "Roger, Yakumo! Sailor Mihoshi will clean the apartment in no time!"
"Sailor...?" Yakumo quickly hid his eyes while Mihoshi changed from her swimsuit into even more revealing clothes.
"No jail can hold me!" shouted Zenigata, running a metal cup across the bars of his cell as Xellos walked past. Xellos smiled eerily at him, and he quickly retreated to the far end of his cell. "The eyes...!"
Xellos came to a stop in front of the cell that housed his three human employees and smiled. "You'll be glad to know that we managed to raise the bail money for you all," he announced jovially. "And this time, we only had to lay off three workers to make up the deficit."
"Let me guess," said Rally. "The payroll department."
"Also, I'm afraid our little experiment with the love potions turned out to be a failure," he admitted jovially. "As I'm sure you've noticed, they expire after a few hours."
Rally and Nuriko shuddered in unison. Moroboshi merely shuddered. "I don't notice anything different," he said.
Officer Natsumi appeared with a keyring in hand. "Touching reunion, really. Now, this time, please don't go out and commit any more crimes, okay? As much as the interest on your bail payments is helping the city, I really have too much to do to go tracking you guys down all over the place." She unlocked the door and swung it open on rusty, creaky hinges.
Suddenly, the wall of the cell exploded. Bloodberry stepped through the cloud of dust. "Come on, we're busting you out of here!"
"Liberatis!" cried Nuku Nuku as she leapt onto Bloodberry's shoulders.
"I can't understand a word that girl says," Xellos noted jovially.
Bloodberry did a double take. "Chief, you're here? And that lady... um...."
Natsumi seethed. "That's it! You're Under Arrest! All of you!"
Bloodberry bolted for the opening, but fifty-two armed guards had already surrounded the outer wall of the cell.
"Well, have fun, everyone!" Xellos said jovially as he vanished into thin air.
Nuriko glared at Bloodberry. "Great job, Small Wonder."
Bloodberry snorted. "I can take them." She shouted a battle cry and charged at the opening, running right into the hail of gunfire.
"Bloodberry!" cried Moroboshi as he cradled her body in his arms.
Bloodberry weakly opened her eyes and coughed. "Ataru... darling... I'm so sorry our time together was so short. If only I'd seen this tragedy coming, I would have made every moment that much more special!"
"Please, don't worry," Moroboshi assured her. "I'll avenge your death and build a fitting memorial to your memory."
"Oh, darling, you were my only love," Bloodberry whispered as she finally died.
Rally wrapped her arms around Moroboshi from behind, softly crying into the back of his neck. "Oh, Bloodberry! She was too young to die so early! And now you're all alone!" She leaned over Moroboshi and kissed him lightly on the lips. "Please, let me be the one to ease your suffering."
Moroboshi glanced sideways at Nuku Nuku, who was randomly flattened by a giant anvil.
"I couldn't have wished for a better ending," he said happily.
Nuriko and Rally shook their heads at the dreaming Moroboshi while Bloodberry staggered back into the cell, her body full of bullet holes that slowly oozed oil. "New plan, guys," she announced. "Let's surrender."
They nodded and raised their hands.
Nuku Nuku smiled broadly and gave them a thumbs-up.
"Say," asked Nuriko, "anyone know what ever happened to Chii?"
Chii held out the marriage certificate and pen innocently. "Chii?"
"What's this?" The man in front of her took the paper curiously and read it carefully. A smile slowly formed on his haggard face, and he rubbed Chii's head. "Thank you, little girl! This is just what I needed!" He turned around and ran toward the small house in the distance.
"Chii!" Chii smiled with satisfaction at a job well done and turned around to begin the long walk back home.
"Well, that's one thing that's gone right today," Yakumo said to himself as he walked back home with a bottle of fresh spring water tucked under his arm. He selectively ignored the thick plumes of black smoke rising from somewhere not far off in the direction he was headed. That could be any number of things... the neighbors could have bought a defective crock-pot. Maybe someone was burning leaves in the backyard. Maybe anything had happened other than Mihoshi setting the apartment on fire. Not even Mihoshi could be that stupid.
She was waiting for him at the street entrance. "Hey, Yacchan, there you are! You're just in time! I got the apartment all ready for Lord Clef's return!"
"It's on fire!" he screamed.
"Well, of course. That's what the note says, see?" She thrust his instructions under his nose. "'Wash the dishes, take out the garbage, and set the rest on fire.'"
"That's not 'fire', Mihoshi. That's 'chores'."
Mihoshi looked at the note and read it again, moving her lips with the words. "Oh, right! I couldn't recognize that kanji, so I asked someone to read it to me. Those two words sound the same."
"How could you mistake chores for arson?" demanded Yakumo. "Wait... never mind. It's you."
"I guess I won't be needing this, then," Mihoshi said dejectedly, holding up a ship's steering wheel. "I didn't know which meaning of that word you meant."
He thrust a finger at her face. "Chores! CHORES! When someone comes to visit, you do the chores! What's so hard about that? Even an idiot like you should be able to do the chores!"
She bit his finger.
Yakumo's tortured screams were so loud that they drowned out the fire engine sirens until the massive truck had parked on top of him and begun to spray water on the burning building.
"Are you the owner of this building?" asked a young fireman with just a hint of stubble. "Do you know how this fire started?"
"Is this yours?" she asked, handing him the steering wheel.
He sighed. "This just isn't my day."
Mihoshi squinted. "Are you supposed to be here? We already have a character from your series."
He smiled. "I had to show up for this scene."
"Ahhhhh... your name is Kaji, isn't it?"
Kaji mocked a quick salute.
Yakumo hauled himself out from under the fire truck and grabbed Mihoshi's collar. "I can't believe your stupidity! Well, maybe I can, but still! What do you think Lord Clef's going to say when he sees this?"
"I'm going to say it looks like you didn't bring me the bottle of water I asked for," said Clef, pointing to the puddle under the fire truck's wheel.
Yakumo screamed and promptly died from the shock.
"Here you go," said Mihoshi, offering him the bottle of seawater.
"Thank you," said Clef. He took the bottle and began to grow rapidly until he towered over the building.
"What is he supposed to be, some kind of Dogzilla?" asked Kaji.
"Some people think he's a bug," replied Mihoshi.
"Damn big for a bug," said Kaji.
"Puun!" said Plue. He turned the giant bottle over, dumping its contents on the burning apartment. The flames died faster than Yakumo under a falling piano.
"Well, my job's done," said Kaji. He hopped into the fire truck and backed over Yakumo one last time before driving away with his siren at full blast.
"That takes care of just about everything," said Clef as he returned to his normal size. "Let's get Sailor Pluto to restore our apartment and call it a day."
"Where were you, anyway?" asked Mihoshi.
Clef sighed. "It seems that someone -" he glared at Mihoshi, who innocently smiled back "- sent a rather large sum of money to a Prince Joe Eboh in Nigeria, and I had to go set things right."
"Did we get our twenty-five million dollars?" Mihoshi asked with a glint of hope in her eyes. She fell into a pit.
"NOW everything's taken care of," Clef announced triumphantly.
"Tinka tinka tee," Pluto said morosely as she waved her staff.
Shinji raised a fist and banged on the door of the palatial mansion that stood where his house had once been. The door opened, and Onizuka glared at him through a pair of thick sunglasses. "Miss Narusegawa speaks to no one."
"I AM no one!" shouted Shinji. "I demand to see my ex-wife!"
"From behind the mailbox?"
"Damn my cowardice!" Shinji stood up and marched determinedly to the door. "I need to speak with her one last time before I leave."
"Look, she's made it big in Hollywood now. She ain't got time for the little people except when she needs to pad her Oscar speech."
"Fine, fine," said Naru as she pushed Onizuka lightly aside. "What do you want, Zilch?"
Shinji blanched at the new pet name, but swallowed his fear and stood up tall as best he could while hunched like a man about to be slapped. "I was just wondering... now that you're a big star and I'm never going to see you again... could I just have an autograph to remember you by?" He bowed and thrust a folded piece of paper forward.
Naru took the paper and stared at the carefully printed blank where she was instructed to write her name. "Well, I don't see why not. If it'll get you out of my hair forever, I'll do it."
Shinji concealed a sly grin.
"Got a pen?"
Shinji's face fell. He patted his pockets. "Shoot, I know there was a pen somewhere!" Then, it hit him. The little girl with the funny ears... walking casually away with the pen still tightly clutched in her fingers....
"I have something, Mama," offered Tomoyo. She handed her mother a red crayon. "It's Tomoyo's favorite color," she said with a sweet smile.
"It'll do," said Naru, scrawling a quick signature while Shinji watched in horror. "There you go." She gave the paper back and slammed the door in his face.
"Bye, Old Papa!" called Tomoyo from behind the closed door.
Shinji unfolded the marriage contract and stared at it through tear-filled eyes. "No! A signature in crayon can't possibly be legally binding! My one chance to set everything right, destroyed!" He threw his head back and screamed his catchphrase.

Mitsubishi pens: They don't write if you don't have one.

Buy a Mitsubishi pen wherever they're sold. Offer void in Utah.


TODAY'S COMMERCIAL PARODY..........................FAILED


Genma sat down heavily on a wooden bench and sighed. True, he was finally a safe distance from the rest of the group, but without them around, he felt... alone. People gaped and stared at him and took pictures, but none of them could possibly see how he was hurting inside.
A growl from behind him made him turn around. He smiled casually at the female panda in the cage and started to look for the quickest way to escape... and then his eyes turned into hearts and he floated into the air, over the bars, and landed in the enclosure with the GREAT PANDAS sign on it. By the time the zookeepers came to feed him, he knew he'd never be alone again.
At least, not until the potion wore off.


MIHOSHI: Another successful episode. How DO you do it?
NIDOKING: Very slowly.
MIHOSHI: (giggles) Well, I'm really looking forward to seeing what trouble I'll get into next time.
NIDOKING: About that... I'm not sure we're going to use you next time.
MIHOSHI: What? But... I'm the main character! You picked me over all the other characters who could have replaced Excel!
NIDOKING: That's just it... there are so many choices that I can't help but wonder how they'd have done in your role. And in all the other roles.
MIHOSHI: You're going to replace us all with characters from other series? But that would be...
NIDOKING: Exactly what QEFEFZ is all about.
MIHOSHI: Yeah! It's not fair!
NIDOKING: Nevertheless, since I haven't yet finished the Excel Saga manga (amazingly), stay tuned next time for QEFEFZ, QEFEFZ style - Quack Experimental Fanfic QEFEFZ Fusion Z Squared!
MIHOSHI: Don't let him do it! I love you all! Miss me when I'm gone!
Pop-Under Notes: I really hope you've been following the story so far. I mean, if you haven't read the first two episodes, then this episode probably didn't make any sense at all. Not that it was supposed to.... However, if you HAVE read the first two episodes, then you're probably already familiar with the pop-under notes. So I'll just get right to them, after a brief pause in which I berate those of you who don't remember the pop-under notes for not remembering them. I mean, come on. What are you guys... forgetful or something? And why the heck did I watch thirty-five Strong Bad E-mails in a row and then try to write a pop-under note? That will seriously mess with your style, man. Seriously. Style. Man.

Waffo: It's a mispronunciation of "waffle" and a general expression of excitement that Little Snow Fairy Sugar loves to use. Those who talk to me, particularly online, are probably familiar with my usage of it.

Shounen ai: As far as the author is concerned, this should be eradicated or allowed to exist in speakeasy-type locations far from mortal eyes. As it is written, "If shounan ai were outlawed, only outlaws would write shounen ai." But the author doesn't read it anyway, so carry on.*


Yurika Misumaru: One of the few new characters in this episode, Yurika is the captain of the Nadesico in Martian Successor Nadesico. She's incredibly annoying and, if memory serves, a horrible cook (but then most of the women in that series who don't work in the galley are bad cooks. One particularly painful episode saw them all trying to serve Akito their special dishes... ouch). How she manages to even be a contender as a romantic lead remains a mystery to this day. It'd be like Tenchi shoving Ryoko and Ayeka aside to go out with Mihoshi.


She's replacing Kumikumi, the woman who was always chasing Nabeshin around with soup in the Excel anime. Her inclusion in later scenes was more or less an afterthought, as I read back over the completed chapter and realized that I'd set her up as a running gag and then never used her. She ended up filling the same role as Card Captor Sakura's Meilin or Abenobashi's Ne-ne-ne-nee-chan.

Lever: I looked long and hard for a place to put a lever into the story. It just never came up. Then I couldn't think of a better title for the episode, and that never came up either. Then I stayed up all night eating pizza and drinking fruit-punch style Mountain Dew. Two out of three ain't bad.

Holiday Inn Express: A popular series of commercials features people in situations where they have no right being, yet they manage somehow to come up with the right answers to the difficult questions. Some average Joe will be winning on Jeopardy or touring with Kiss, and someone asks them if they're a genius. "No, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night!" I stayed there once, and my already ample intelligence failed to increase noticeably. The commercials lie. There aren't even monsters that come out of the Yu-Gi-Oh cards.

Take over the world/sailor uniform is the correct answer: "sekai no seifuku" and "seikai ha seifuku". Yes, half of that pun was in the original Excel Saga anime. But I could also have gotten it from Trouble Chocolate, where the same pun was used. YOU DON'T KNOW.

5UP3|2133T: I don't know which to feel more sorry for... those who couldn't read this stuff, or those who could. And some people think typing in symbols that look vaguely like letters is cool. LOLOMGWTFBBQ. Er... forget the author said that.

KILLING SPREE/RELENTLESS: These are things that the announcer says in Unreal Tournament if you manage to kill enough people without being killed yourself. That's about as funny as it gets.

IRC rant: This was mentioned back in episode 1. Go back and review if you've forgotten... it's still funny the seventeenth time around.

Spanish: Yes, I went to some lengths ahem Babelfish cough to get the foreign languages just right in this episode. Some guy on IRC named CBRSDF1 helped me with the Spanish. I didn't think to ask what language that name was.

"Yo quiero taco de pescado": A simple perversion of the "Yo quiero Taco Bell" catchphrase of the evil, evil Taco Bell chihuahua. Obviously, it means "I want a fish taco." Obviously.

"Ese rabo verde siempre me esta tocando.": It means "That pervert is always touching me." I figure that's not as obvious as some of the other things Nuku Nuku says throughout the episode.

"El guardia no se veia contento cuando intente comerme los barrotes.": "The guard wasn't happy when I tried to chew through the bars."

"Sabe como a menta, con un fuerte gusto a aguacate, y un detaille de asserin,": "Tastes like mint, with a strong avocado flavor and just a hint of sawdust." If I translate any more of Nuku Nuku's Spanish, I'm going to have to re-write "Pop-Under Notes" in Spanish.

"choSuvchugh 'oy'lIj Daghur neH.": This, as most of you probably guessed, is Klingon for "It will only hurt for a while." In its proper context, it means that the victim's death will come quickly. I wanted to come up with something more appropriate, but I couldn't find the good online Klingon-English dictionary I used to use, so I had to resort to a phrasebook.

"Ihr Lieben, lasst euch durch die Schmerz nicht befremden, die euch widerfahrt zu eurer Versuchung, als widerfuhre euch etwas Seltsames.": Those among you both religious and parlant in German probably recognized this translation of a translation of a translation of 1 Peter 4:12: "Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you." I really wanted this in Latin, but I couldn't find a Latin Bible online. German was good enough for my purposes.

Sparkling Pink Background: This is the sort of thing that typically happens when a man falls in love with a woman in shoujo anime... or cartoons... or real life.

Pace of writing: Yes, the points at which the Nidoking character says he's read a book of Excel Saga correspond to the American release of each volume of the Excel Saga manga. It took me months to get through the first half, and about two weeks to get through the second half, plus another week to stew about the beach scene and write these notes. That's inspiration for you. It's a fickle thing.

Middle finger: Clay Fortran in Candidate for Goddess always pushes his glasses up with his middle finger. We're not sure why.

I shall turn into Lord Clef: Sailor Moon's catchphrase is "Tsuki ni kawatte, o-shioki yo," which means "in the name of the Moon, I will punish you." But "kawaru" can also mean "to change", although in that context, "naru" would be used more commonly. If any of that made any sense to you, then you probably already knew all of it and the joke made sense the first time.

Sasami: In some continuities, Sasami doubles as the magical girl Pretty Sammy. But you already knew that.

Tomoyo tornado, Nidoking fanfic: Tomoyo was swept up in a tornado in her bedroom in the prologue of my "A Blessing and a Curse". I still have to write a chapter of that someday. Inspiration is a fickle thing indeed.

Newsbox: I belatedly realize that I should have put Maggie Simpson in there. Oh well.

"Vostro corpo metallico raspa mia pelle fragile!": Italian for "Your metal body abrades my fragile skin!" Or so I think. Babelfish put in a bunch of words that looked like extra articles. If Italian is actually full of "the your metal body" and "the my fragile skin", then the my bad. Let me know at the your earliest convenience.

Wolfwood: The traveling priest from Trigun. He's just there for ambience, really. I came up with the "Have you ever wondered what happens when you die" joke and ran with it.

Mitsubishi pens: My apologies to those readers who don't attend Anime Hell regularly, because this entire running gag made no sense otherwise. One of the Japanese commercials shown at Anime Hell is a commercial for Mitsubishi pens which runs as follows (as best my horrible memory can recall): A woman is trying to get a man to sign a marriage certificate, and he wakes up screaming, only to see her hanging from the ceiling, showing that Mitsubishi pens work at any angle. Then he wakes up on a space shuttle, and she's outside holding that paper and pen, and she smashes the window, causing the cabin to depressurize and showing that Mitsubishi pens work in any environment. Then he wakes up in a chair, wearing a tuxedo, and she's wearing her wedding dress. The entire Mitsubishi pen gag was a parody of that commercial.

The entire restaurant scene: As Yakumo notes at the end, every line delivered in this scene is a slogan. Most of them are for fast-food restaurants, but they diverge into other things. Here's the complete list, because nobody reads this stuff anyway and every one of those slogans will be outdated within a few hours. If they're not already.
Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame-seed bun: The original slogan for the Bic Mac, I believe. This one was outdated before I even wrote the scene.
Your way, right away: Burger King. A recent slogan, but still outdated.
It's how the last place you'd go for a burger will become the first: Hardee's. Apparently, they're using the fact that they used to suck as advertising leverage.
The only difference you'll notice is the price: Meijer, a local supermarket. Their commercials are hilarious.
Hold the pickles, hold the lettuce. Special orders don't upset us: I'm not sure who used this one. McDonald's again, probably.
Add fries and a Dr Pepper and make it a meal: The brand of soda changes with each iteration... I remember it being Coke at one point as well. McDonald's on their value meals.
Got milk: A slogan for milk, generically... the American Dairy Farmers' Association or some group like that uses it to entice people to drink milk. Weird Al did several parodies of it.
It does a body good: Another slogan for milk. Earlier than "Got milk", I think.
Got a buck? You're in luck: Seems that everyone has a one dollar value menu for all the stuff too small to be worth ordering, but I believe Wendy's first used this slogan.
You can get all calls up to twenty minutes for only ninety-nine cents: The old 10-10-220 commercials... dating all the way back to when it was still just 10-220. How many of those numbers ARE there now? I haven't seen a commercial for one in years.
South of the border: An early Taco Bell slogan. This used to be printed on their wrappers, but I can't remember any earlier than "Make a run for the border."
Where's the beef: Wendy's, maybe? Or it could just be the precursor to the generic "Beef - it's what's for dinner." I remember hearing it on TV when I was really young... like in the early 80s.
Oklahoma: This is the blatant reference to the original incarnation of the Whose Line is it Anyway game I stole this scene from. In that game, the contestants have to act out a scene speaking only in song titles. Invariably, someone eventually says "Where have all the flowers gone?" and invariably, everyone in the scene will reply "Oklahoma."
I'm tired of the same old burgers: Not strictly a slogan, but part of the aforementioned Hardee's commercials.
Eet mor chikin: The advertisements for Chick-Fil-A, where cows hold signs asking people to eat more chicken. The signs are badly spelled because everyone knows that cows are horrible spellers. When they make signs. With their hooves.
You gotta eat: Rally's.
Mmm, mmm, good: Campbell's Soup. This is an old one.
I'm lovin' it: The latest McDonald's slogan as of this writing. I have no idea why anyone would think this would make people want to eat at McDonald's. Or anywhere.
It's not delivery; it's DiGiorno: Um, duh.
I'M FULL: This is what the people shout in the new Taco Bell Value Menu commercials. I think they started WHILE I was writing this episode... but then, so did the year 2004, and it's almost September.
Have you had your break today: I think this was yet another McDonald's slogan. They sure go through a lot of them.
Give me a break: Kit-Kat candy bars. I think they've been using this slogan since I was born.
I'm coocoo for Cocoa Puffs: Cocoa Puffs cereal. Pretty sure this one is older than I am as well. Sonny the whatever-it-is bird is getting pretty old to be appealing to kids anymore.
That's 100% Angus Beef: Another bit from the Hardee's commercials, although Burger King has recently started advertising the "Angus Diet". I've just dated this story.
Greasy, not fun, uh-uh: Pringles... speaking of their competitors, of course.
Don't squeeze the Charmin: Charmin toilet paper. Good old Mr. Whipple. Whoever that is.
We love to see you smile: The McDonald's slogan that led up to "I'm lovin' it." It made more sense back then.

Yuuzou Takada: The author of 3x3 Eyes, the manga that originally featured Yakumo. Who says I never credit the original authors? Oh, right... I still haven't made my universal disclaimer page.

Small Wonder: An old sitcom about a scientist who built a robotic daughter.

Kaji: Using different kanji, the word "kaji" can mean fire, chores, or a ship's rudder. A bite is "kajiri", but that's close enough for Mihoshi. The character Kaji is the stubbly guy in Evangelion who's surrounded by various character debates... indeed, I'd already used Shinji from that series, but I just HAD to have a Kaji here to complete the joke... which nobody was going to get anyway.

Prince Joe Eboh: Everything you need to know about this can be found at, if you've never gotten a Nigerian scam E-mail before. The short version is that someone, usually in Nigeria, will E-mail you using a fake name and promising to give you a cut of a large sum of money in exchange for helping them get it out of the country. All it requires from you is a few thousand dollars to cover administrative fees... and it just keeps building as long as you have money to send them.

Tinka tinka tee: The onomatopoeia for the sound Samantha made when she used her magic in Bewitched. I've just dated myself.

Strong Bad: The real reason to visit He answers a new E-mail almost every week, and it's usually pretty funny.

Fruit-punch style Mountain Dew: Collect as many flavors of Mountain Dew as are available in your area and mix in equal parts in a container. With two liters of this mixture, you can make a wet computer out of Strong Bad's computer. (Reference previous note.)
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