Saturday, July 4, 1992, 7:15 PM
Princess Lana was sitting near the edge of a lake near a forest. She was throwing small stones into the water and watching the water spread out from the point where the stones landed. It was twilight. It was going to take her some time to get used to living in Megaland, but she had a lot of friends here to help her, and she felt better knowing that she wouldn't be going through it all alone. All of the others, except for Mega Man and Kevin's friends from Earth, would have to adjust, too. She heard footsteps behind her. She turned her head to see who it was. "Kevin." Lana said, smiling. She was looking forward to doing some making out until the sun set. Then she saw the way he was looking at her. Kevin's face was ghastly pale and had mixed expressions of fright and shock on it. "Kevin?" Lana asked worriedly, throwing her last stone into the lake and standing up. "Kevin, what's wrong?" Kevin didn't say anything. He just walked towards her slowly. "Kevin?" Kevin stopped when he was close to her. There was a gentle breeze blowing that evening. Kevin's hair was moving by it. Lana now saw him up-close. The look on his face was unmistakably horror. "Kevin, talk to me." After a moment's hesitation, he spoke, but weakly, as if he had received a great shock: "Doctor...Right asked me to...see something." Lana nodded, inviting him to continue. "It was a...computer screen...displaying a lot of stuff that I - I didn't understand. But he,...he explained it to me." Lana couldn't understand how information on a computer screen could evoke such a reaction from Kevin. "What did it say?" she asked, feeling uneasy. "I...was...trying to decide whether or not to tell you this." "Whether or not?" Lana asked. "Kevin, we tell each other everything." Kevin nodded slowly. "Yes, yes we do." "Then tell me!" Kevin just looked at her for a few seconds, then pulled her close to him and hugged her tight, sobbing on her right shoulder. "I'm so...sorry!!!" Now Lana was panicking. She pushed Kevin away from her. "Kevin, what did the computer screen say?!" Kevin swallowed. "Dr. Wily was jamming all the signals on the planet in the three hours before you destroyed the Palace." "Meaning?" "Meaning no electronic messages could be transmitted during that time." Lana shook her head. "I still don't understand." "Lana," Kevin began nervously, paused, then resumed, "how many electronic messages did you send in the three hours before destruction?" Lana shook her head. "None. Just the evacuation alert - " She broke off as she realized with sudden horror what Kevin didn't want to tell her. Kevin shuddered when Lana stopped talking. "No!" she yelled. Kevin shut his eyes. He didn't want to see her. Lana gripped Kevin's shoulders with her hands and shook him hard. "No!!!" Kevin just let himself be shaken. He didn't know what else to do. "Look at me!!!" she demanded, ceasing the shaking. Slowly, Kevin opened his eyes and saw her. Her face was red, and she was infuriated. "It can't be true! It just - " Kevin nodded, cutting her off. "Yes! Yes it is, Lana!" Slowly, Lana's face turned from red to a pale white. "Lana?"
Sunday, July 5, 1992, 12:00 PM
Work was going pretty smoothly on the N Team's new house. The N Team, Link, Zelda, Lyle, Prince Plenty, and Major Domo were living in their own separate tents while they were in Megaland. It was now almost noon. Kevin was walking around, looking at the construction robots as they cut, welded, put together,... Kevin sighed. He was constantly thinking about Lana. "Kevin." Kevin turned to face the person that had called his name. "Zelda." The Ruler of Hyrule stopped in front of him. "How is she?" he asked. "Well, she hasn't said a word since you two came back last night. But, she's able to undress and dress herself. She took a shower last night, ate dinner, brushed her teeth, and went to sleep. But no speaking." Kevin nodded. "Kevin, what happened to her last night in the woods?" "I don't think you wanna know. Dr. Right and I have agreed to keep this to ourselves for now. We haven't told anyone, because they might react the same way Lana did." "It was something you told her?" the Princess queried. Kevin nodded. "Yeah." "Well, what was it?" Kevin was silent. Zelda placed her hands on his shoulders. "Kevin, Lana's my best friend in all of Videoland. I need to know what she heard. What could make her react this way?!" Kevin remained silent. Zelda shook him. "Tell me!" "Have lunch with me?" Zelda nodded. "Okay." They walked over to one of the picnic tables and sat across from each other. Kevin opened up his cooler, which he had placed on the table earlier, and took out two sandwiches, two glasses, and a glass bottle of iced tea. He handed Zelda a sandwich and poured her a glass. "Thank you." Zelda said. "You're welcome." "So,...what's this about?" "Okay," Kevin began, "Dr. Right told me yesterday that Lana's evacuation message never reached anyone." "What?!" "Dr. Wily was jamming the signals." "How many people?!" "According to the Palace's information, 10,176,899." "Bloody tears!" Zelda breathed in horror. "I know." Kevin said. "I couldn't sleep last night." "Why didn't we detect Wily's interference?!" Zelda asked. Kevin shook his head. "I don't know. I guess we were too preoccupied with Wily's next attack, that we just...forgot." "Forgot? Kevin, millions of people are dead!" "I'm sorry!" Kevin yelled. "I don't know what to do!" Zelda suddenly stood and waved with her left hand. "Lana!" Kevin turned around. Lana was standing a few meters away. Zelda sat down. She walked over to them, passed Kevin without even looking at him, and stood to Zelda's left. Zelda scooted over to her right. "Join us!" she said cheerfully. Lana sat down. Zelda offered her her half-eaten sandwich and half-drunken glass of tea. Lana took them without a word. Kevin sipped his tea as he watched Lana eat and drink. "So," Zelda asked, "what's new?" Lana ignored her. Zelda clutched Lana's right arm with her hands. "I know! I - " She let go and just watched her friend sadly. "Lana," Kevin began, "do you wanna talk about - " Lana threw the rest of her sandwich at Kevin, hitting him in the face. Kevin put the sandwich on the table and wiped his face with a napkin from the cooler. "Lana, I know you're in shock." Kevin said. "I don't know how to deal with something like this! I don't think anyone does! Please talk to us, or at least listen to us. We want to help you get through this." Lana remained silent, simply staring at him with a blank expression. "Do you," Kevin asked hesitantly, "do you still love me?" Lana's anger flared up. She stood up, jumped to the top of the picnic table, and threw herself at Kevin. Taken by surprise, Kevin fell to the ground. "You!!!" Lana screamed. "You dare ask me about love?! I hate you! You turned me into a murderer!!!" She began punching him in the face. "Look at me! Look what I've become!" Lana hit Kevin repeatedly, releasing all her anger through her fists. "I will never love you! Never again!!!" Just then, Princess Zelda pulled Lana up with her left hand, turning her around to face her. "That's enough!" She looked down at Kevin. "Kevin, are you okay?" Kevin managed to nod, and he stood up. His nose was bleeding. Zelda gave him a napkin to wipe the blood off. "Thanks." Kevin said, and wiped all the blood off. Then he looked at Lana and laughed. "You're not gonna make a habit of this, are you?" Lana broke away from Zelda's grip, turned, and walked away. Kevin and Zelda watched her go, concerned.
"Dr. Right." Rick said, walking into the scientist's laboratory. "Yes?" Dr. Right turned to face him and Kevin, who was to Rick's left. "We have a plan." Rick said. "Kevin and I are going to Skull Castle to steal Wily's Warp Zone Shifter, so we can get back to Earth." Dr. Right nodded. "All right, I'll open a warp for you." Kevin nodded. "Thanks, Doc." "We already told the others." Rick said. "We should be back in an hour at most." Dr. Right smiled. "You're that good, huh?" Kevin grinned. "You know it!" Dr. Right opened the warp. "Good luck." "Thanks." Kevin and Rick answered, and went through the warp. The scientist closed the warp, then noticed he was receiving a message on his main viewscreen. He went to answer it.
Kevin and Rick arrived outside Skull Castle. Kevin drew his Zapper, and Rick readied his laser rifle. They fought their way in. They came across some lesser robots scattered throughout the various corridors, but not many. "Looks like Dr. Wily kept a bare minimum of robots to protect Skull Castle and sent the rest to attack the Palace." Rick surmised. "Which explains why we haven't run into any Robot Masters." Kevin added. "There aren't any."
Kevin blasted the door to Dr. Wily's laboratory, and he and Rick walked inside. The evil scientist was busy at his computer. He spun around in his chair when he heard the blast. "Captain N!" Kevin smiled. "Hi, Doc!" "How'd you get past my defenses?!" Kevin chuckled. "Or lack thereof!" "What do you want?!" Wily asked. "You've already destroyed my army!" "We want that fancy little Warp Zone Shifter." Rick said, pointing at it. "Forget it! It took me a long time to rebuild it!" Kevin grinned evilly. "Please." Wily held up his hands in front of him. "All right, all right, take it!" Kevin and Rick smiled at each other, then went over to the Warp Zone Shifter. "Set a warp to our new house." Kevin told Rick. "Make the warp open to the left of the Shifter, then have it encompass the entire machine." Rick worked at the control panel. "Gotcha."
Kevin, Rick, and the Warp Zone Shifter warped to an area near the picnic tables. "Guys!" Kevin called. The rest of the N Team and their friends gathered around them to see what was up. "Look what we got!" Kevin announced, smiling broadly. "Dr. Wily's mega Warp Zone Shifter!" Mega Man exclaimed. "We're goin' back home to get the rest of our stuff." Rick said. "Stacey, Romeo, Julius, Mike, you guys wanna come with us?" They all agreed and stepped forward. "All right," Rick said, "while we were at Skull Castle, I created a warp zone opener similar to the one Anubis and Osiris used." He held it up in his right hand. "It's powerful enough to open up a warp, and it even stores the coordinates for up to 100 locations!" "Cool." Mike said. Rick fiddled with the control panel on the Warp Zone Shifter and with the warp zone opener for about thirty seconds. "There. I've set the Shifter to take us to Kevin's room, and the opener to return us here." Rick opened the warp. He stepped through. Romeo, Julius, Stacey, and Mike followed. "We'll be back in a few hours." Kevin told the others, then went through. Lana stared at the warp, still not thinking very straight. She ran and jumped through. The warp closed. Just then, another warp opened, and Dr. Right came through. "Where's the Princess?!" he asked, excited. "She just warped to Earthicus." Kid Icarus informed him. "Why?" Mega Man asked his creator. "There's something I gotta tell her, but it can wait 'til she gets back."
The warp opened, and the seven of them stepped into Kevin's bedroom. The warp closed. Immediately, Lana ran towards the door, much to the confusion of the others. "Lana?" Kevin asked. "What's she doing here?" Rick wondered. Kevin shook his head. "I don't know." Lana opened the door and ran out of the room. Kevin's parents were just walking up the stairs when Lana ran past them, going down the stairs. The surprised parents were even more surprised when six other people came running down the stairs after her. Ned and Cheryl turned and ran after them. Lana ran across the living room and to the front door. She opened it and ran outside. Kevin stopped in the doorway and saw her running down the path, onto the sidewalk, and away. "Lana!" "Kevin?" Cheryl asked in surprise. Kevin turned to face her. He smiled. "Hi, mom." Cheryl grinned. "You're back!" They hugged. When they let go, Kevin looked out the door again. "Kevin?" Cheryl asked. "Is everything all right?" Kevin shook his head, still looking outside. "No, mom." "What's wrong, Kevin?" Kevin turned and walked back inside. Cheryl closed the front door. "Kevin, what is it?!" Now she was really worried. Kevin looked at her. "It's Lana." "What about her?" "She's...in shock." "Oh?" his mom asked. "How come?" "She killed ten-million people." Cheryl started. "What?!!!" The others were also greatly shocked. Kevin looked at all of them. "All right, sit down." Cheryl uneasily sat down on the couch, and Kevin sat to her right. The others all sat on the floor. Kevin took a deep breath before he began. Then he, for the benefit of his parents, told of everything that had happened since they went to Videoland last month.
Lana was running around town, not really thinking about where she was going or why. She barely even recognized her surroundings. "Lana?" Lana stopped at the call of her name. "Is that you?" the female to her right continued. Lana turned to face her. "It is you!" the girl exclaimed happily. She ran up to Lana. "Remember me?" "Kristen." Lana recalled. Kristen nodded, smiling. "Yeah! Hi! How are you doin'?!" "Not...too good." Lana managed. "Aw." Kristen said sympathetically. "Well, if you came for a haircut, we have a special After Independence Day offer. Half off for half off." She touched Lana's hair with her left hand. "Looks like you don't need a haircut, though." Lana shook her head. "I didn't come for a haircut." "Oh." Kristen said, then smiled. "Then I guess it's just as well, since I just got off work, and I wouldn't have the pleasure of giving you a haircut anyway!" "I'm having problems." Lana told her. "What kind of problems?" Lana shook her head. "I don't wanna talk about them here." "Listen, why don't we go back to my place?" Kristen offered. "We can have some soda, and you can tell me all that's bothering you." Lana nodded, smiling, and they walked over to Kristen's car, where the hairstylist had been standing when she noticed Lana, which was parked right outside the hair salon. They got in and drove away.
Kevin had gone through everything, then finally came to the news that Dr. Right shared with him, at which point they all wept. "Does anyone else know?" Cheryl asked finally. "Just Zelda." Kevin replied, and told them everything that had happened since he had first heard the news from Dr. Right, up until they arrived in Kevin's room and Lana had run away. "And that's it." he finished. "You know the rest." "So, you're saying that Lana is running around town now, half - if not completely - out of her mind?!" Ned asked. Kevin slowly nodded. "Well, then, we gotta find her!" Cheryl insisted. "She's lost in a land that's almost foreign to her!" Kevin stood up and nodded. "Right!" The others stood up also. "Okay," Ned said, "I'll go look for her. Everyone else can go home and pack up all their stuff." Cheryl nodded. "I'll drive each of them home." That said, Ned went off looking for Lana, and the others helped Kevin pack the rest of his stuff to take back to Videoland.
Kristen parked her car in the driveway, and she and Lana got out. Kristen had a nice two-story house. Without a word, Kristen went and unlocked the front door. She allowed her friend to step inside first, then she followed. Kristen got two bottles of Pepsi from the fridge. "Let's go out on the patio." So they did, and they sat on lawn chairs, facing each other. "All right," Kristen said, "what's up?" "How do I begin?" Lana wondered. "Do you...believe in multiple dimensions? Alternate universes?" "Yeah." she answered truthfully. "Well, I'm from one." Lana said. "What?" "Maybe I'd better start at the beginning." Lana decided.
Cheryl had driven each of Kevin's friends home, where, after they had lied to their parents about where they'd been and where they're going, they had packed all their stuff into suitcases. Then, Kevin would open up a warp to Megaland, and he and his friends would take all of the luggage to a room in Dr. Right's laboratory. Cheryl, needlessly to say, was definitely amazed by the warp. Of course, they didn't tell any of Kevin's friends' parents about Videoland. The Club believed that the fewer people who knew about Videoland, the better. Finally, they all returned to Kevin's house. A short while later, Ned came in through the front door. "Any luck?" Cheryl asked anxiously. Ned shook his head. "Nope. I've been all around town. I couldn't find her anywhere." Kevin sighed. "Well, all of our stuff is in Videoland. Let's all go look for her."
Lana had explained to Kristen about Videoland, who she is, and about the prophecy mentioning Captain N. She told briefly of their adventures, and the destruction of the Palace of Power and the loss of ten-million lives by her own hand. "So," Lana asked finally, "what do you think?" Kristen leaned back in her chair and thought. Finally, she shook her head. "I dunno." "What do you mean you don't know?! I need help!" Lana mentally scolded herself and lowered her voice. "The others tried talking to me, but I didn't want their help. You seem to be the only one I can talk to. I dunno, maybe it's the lack of familiarity with you that's making this possible. Kristen, help me, please." Kristen sat up straight. "Okay, first, before I even try to help you, I need to know what your morals are. What do you think of yourself now?" "I think," Lana began, "I think I'm a murderer." She shuddered violently. "And why do you think that?" "Because I killed everyone on that planet." "You're gonna have to do better than that." "What, you don't think killing ten-million people is murder?!" "Lana," Kristen said calmly, "what's the definition of murder?" "Murder: Noun: homicide with malice aforethought. Verb, Transitive: kill with premeditated malice, kill barbarously, mar by poor execution, - " "Stop." Kristen said, raising her left hand in front of her. "That's the dictionary definition. I wanna know your definition." Lana smiled. "Sorry. I memorized that last night. Um, I guess murder is the taking of a human life for no good reason." Kristen nodded. "And what do you consider a good reason?" "Killing when there's a real or perceived immediate threat to your own life or the lives of others." "So, you're saying that it's okay to kill in self-defense or to defend the life of another person, right?" Lana nodded. "Yeah. I learned that lesson a while ago." Kristen nodded. Lana had told her about her father. "And that's not murder?" Lana shook her head. "That's not murder." "Why?" "Because every human being has a basic human right to live, which also includes a right to defend that life. A person has lost the right to live only when they threaten the lives of other people." "Threaten in what way?" "Their physical well-being. Their life." "So if someone physically threatens you or someone else, you can kill that person in defense?" Kristen asked to make sure there was no confusion. Lana nodded. "Right." "What would you do if someone came up right now and stabbed me to death, then left the knife in my chest and ran away? Would you take the knife and follow him, and when you caught up with him, would you kill him the same way he killed me?" "Well, if I caught him very shortly, like within a few seconds, I might kill him out of panic or fear for the safety of other people." "Is that murder?" Lana shook her head. "No, of course not! Now, if I were chasing after him for a while, running down the street after him, and then I kill him, that is when I become a murderer, because I'm driven by vengeance. I wanted him to die. I should control myself and call the police!" "You mentioned a perceived threat." Kristen brought up. "Explain that." "If you believe someone is threatening you, but they really aren't, then you have a right to kill that person, because you're not sure one way or the other." "Like?" "Like if someone pulls out a fake weapon, but you don't