12-09-2010, 12:35 PM
This is an extension of Bob Bergman's Amazing Final Fantasy Race, which is posted at But since I wrote this, I figured I may as well post it here as well...

If you'd like view it as a Microsoft Word document, download

Otherwise, read on...

The Amazingly Fake Final Fantasy Race
Episode 4 � �HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE�: Part 1

{Announcer Gippal}

Previously on The Amazing Final Fantasy Race: nine teams set off from the World of Ruin and raced to the world of Cocoon. Here, a watery Detour threatened to knock Spirans Brother & Buddy out of the race. Following this task, teams were transported to the world of Gran Pulse where Vincent Valentine was nearly eliminated at the leg's Roadblock after repeatedly transforming into an elemental form that only healed the monster. In the end, however, it was Choco Billy and Chocobo Sage were eliminated after the Chocobo Sage once again completely forgot what he was doing and launched off on a long, rambling story about how to breed chocobos on The Planet. Now eight teams remain... who will be eliminated next?

Gippal stood on a mountaintop overlooking the vast plains of the Archlyte Steppe. "This is the Archylte Steppe, a grand plain within the world of Gran Pulse. And here..." (the camera angled to show a secluded area teeming with chocobos) " the Font of Namva. Teams checked in at the end of the last leg for a mandatory Pit Stop that allowed them to eat, sleep and mingle... either amongst themselves or with the chocobos, a real irony considering our previous elimination. Honestly, how'd that guy last two legs? During the Pit Stop, some teams took part in a chocobo racing challenge. Sora & Riku, who were the first to arrive at 1:13 will depart at 13:13."

{Sora and Riku: Friends, 1st to Depart: 13:13}

Sora stood on the mat, full of nervous energy and ready for the leg to start. The signal came and he ripped open the first clue envelope and read it to Riku. "Make your way to the Vallas Media, then find the portal and transport to the world of Spira. You have 1010 gil for this leg of the race. You got everything Riku?" Riku nodded, a cocky look on his face. "Good!" said Sora. "Then, let's go!"

Spiran Portal

{Announcer Gippal}

"Teams must travel through the plains of the Archylte Steppe to the Vallas Media and locate this portal, leading the world of Spira. Teams may ride chocobos to this area, but are under no obligation to do so, and only if they're not dumb enough to miss the note about it in their clue."

{ Sora and Riku: Friends, Currently in First Place }

"We won the last leg, and we're going to win this one too!" exclaimed Sora, sprinting ahead. Riku tagged along with a swagger, though slightly less than fast than Sora. They made their way through the plains, Sora occasionally dispatching a straying monster with his Keyblade and Riku with his Way to Dawn.

{Montblanc and Gurdy: Moogles, 2nd to Depart: 13:25}

Hovering over the cluebox, Montblanc bobbed his pom-pom, and then ripped open the clue. "Make your way to the Vallas Media, kupo! Find the portal and transport to the world of Spira, kupow!" "Kupow, yourself, kupo," replied Gurdy. "Looks like you missed something, kupopo. 'Teams may choose to make their way through Archlyte Steppe via chocobo. You will only be provided one chocobo each, so should your chocobo's Morale Gauge reach zero, your chocobo will flee and you must complete the remainder of the journey on foot.' Chocobos, kupo?! Let's go for it, kupopo, kupopo!" Montblanc and Gurdy hopped on their chocobos and took off.

{Sora and Riku: Friends, Currently in First Place}

Sora was getting tired. "Man, this is worse than the Heartless. It never ends." Riku was nonplussed. "Didn't think you'd be one to give up so easily, Sora!" He flashed away a wolf-like monster with his Way to Dawn, then sprinted ahead, overtaking Sora. "Come on, Sora, I know you like games! Now it's a race between us!"

{Boko and Koko: Chocobos, 3rd to Depart: 13:30}

Boko gave a loud "kweh!" as he opened the clue, which a subtitle helpfully translated as "Ya'ay!" He and Koko had always wanted to meet Spiran chocobos. He read through the remainder of the clue and he and Koko gave a sort of chittering laughter as they read the part about riding on chocobos to the Vallas Media. They mounted to their packs to their saddles and set off.

{Sora and Riku, Friends: Currently in First Place}

Sora and Riku had reached the edge of the Archylte Steppe and were stupidly trying to take an on Adamantortoise. Sora spammed his Trinity Limit while Riku simply swung his Way to Dawn and occasionally tossed an Elixir, seemingly not even phased. As they were in the midst of this, Montblanc and Gurdy zipped by on the chocobos. "Later, kupo!" shouted Gurdy. Sora looked stunned. He reached down, checked his clue and saw the part about the chocobos. His brief distraction allowed the Adamantortoise to get in a near-fatal stomp. Riku sighed and tossed another Elixir.

{Kefka and Leo, Antagonists, 4th to Depart: 13:35}

"Ah, nothing beats the sound of thousands of clues being ripped open in unison," stated Kefka with a mad cackle. "Um, there's only one clue," replied Leo. "Shut up!" shouted Kefka. "Ugh, there's sand in my boots." He counted up the gil, then he and Leo zipped off, completely failing to notice anything about chocobos.

{Cid Kramer and Cid X, Cids: 5h to Depart: 13:36}

The two Cids waited for Kefka and Leo to leave the mat, then stepped forward. Cid X opened the clue and began reading in his usual loud voice: "Well, I'll be! Find the portal in the Vallas Media and then take the portal to Spira! E's kueh' rusa!" He caught the note about the chocobos and turned to Cid Kramer. "No," said Cid K. "I'm too old for that." "Pain in the ass old fart..." muttered Cid X.

{Boko and Koko, Chocobos, Currently in First Place}

Boko and Koko, both being the equivalent of Rank S in their world, zipped past Montblanc and Gurdy with a loud "kweh!" which was translated with a helpful subtitle: "Na na, na, na na." They approached the portal and were quickly transported to the world of Spira. In flash, they found themselves at the base of Mt. Gagazet, where they found a cluebox. Koko reached in a clue and then swiped it to open the clue.

{Announcer Gippal}

A Detour is a choice between two tasks, each with its own pros and cons. In this Detour, teams must choose between either Hot Springs or Hot Things. In Hot Springs, teams travel to the Mt. Gagazet Hot Springs, where they must then endure a blistering thirty minute Hot Springs session while being teased by members of the Leblanc Syndicate. The task is not based on luck, but teams with too much modesty and who can't take the heat might find themselves getting burned. In Hot Stuff, teams travel to the Leblanc Chateau, home of Leblanc and the Amazing Final Fantasy Early Show. They must then give Leblanc a ten minute massage and try to fill her satisfaction meter. It is not a particularly uncomfortable task, but teams with no skill might find themselves rubbed out of the race. Additionally, this task is first come, first served. Should a team massage Leblanc in a manner that she finds extremely dissatisfying a total of three times, they must step aside and allow the next team to attempt the task, if any team is waiting. Any team completing Hot Springs must head to the nearby platform and teleport to the entrance to the Hot Springs. Teams completing Hot Stuff must make for this nearby blue sphere and transport to Guadosalam, where they will find themselves only a short walk away from Chateau Leblanc.

"Kweh! Kweh! Kweh!" shouted Koko. She continued with a series of warks and kwehs which were subtitled "What do you think, Boko?" "Definitely Hot Springs," replied Boko. "Can you imagine the damage we'd cause if we tried to complete a massage with these talons?" "Hot Springs, kweh!" replied Koko. The two chocobos zipped to the portal and teleported away.

{Gurdy and Montblanc, Moogles, Currently in Second Place}

Gurdy and Montblanc arrived in the Vallas Media. They approached the portal, were automatically dismounted from their chocobos and transported to Spira. Gurdy retrieved the clue. "Oh, kupo! The second clue. Looks like Sora and Riku are still behind us, then."

{Gurdy and Montblanc, Moogles: Interview}

"I don't like Sora and Riku, kupo!" shouted Gurdy, bobbing her pom pom rapidly. "They're not even from any Final Fantasy world, but because of some shady deal with the producers, they managed to get on the race, kupheh! They've already won the first two legs thanks to this conspiracy and they're going to take the whole race unless someone stops them, kupo! Yet none of the other teams even seem to care! So we're hitting them with a delay point the next chance we get, right Montblanc?" Montblanc slowly nodded his pom pom. "Just read the clue, kupo." "Oh, kupo," replied Gurdy. "Hot Springs or Hot Stuff." He read it all over. "Let's give this Leblanc lady a taste of massage, moogle style!"

{Leo and Kefka, Antagonists, Currently in Third Place}

Despite near-constant bickering throughout the plain, Kefka and Leo arrived at the portal and were transported to Spira. Kefka giggled, pushed Leo out of the way as he raced over to the cluebox, and opened the next clue. He laughed his maniacal laugh, again, as he read over the Detour choices. "I'm not massaging some slut! Hot Springs it is!" He pulled Leo away from the clue box and dragged him over to the teleporter.

{Boko and Koko, Chocobos, Currently in First Place}

Boko and Koko entered the Hot Springs, au naturale, seeing as they weren't wearing anything to begin with. They soaked themselves up to their necks and, then suddenly... there was a wolf whistle. "Whee-hoo!" shouted a Dr. Goon. Looks like we got ourselves some birdies!" There was a chorus of giggling all around. Boko and Koko weren't fazed in the least. They just let out several long kwehs and continued to have a general relaxing time. Being chocobos, they were well-trained for all weather and the heat didn't bother them a bit.

{Sazh and Bhakti, Father and Robot, 6th to Depart: 13:45}

Bhakti extended one of his metallic arms and tore open the clue. "Bip, bop, boop," he said. "Travel to the Vallas Media" said Sazh "and transport to the world of Spira. Boy, you and I just can't catch a break, can we Bhakti? I was hopin' to get offa Pulse right away. Oh well, here we go again. What's that Bhakti?" "Zim oop ahhhhh!" responded Bhakti. "What?! Ride on chocobos! Heck yeah!" He hopped a chocobo, while Bhakti slowly extended himself up onto one and the two took off.

{Sora and Riku, My Friend, Mon Ami, Many Thanks, Merci, Currently in Fourth Place}

Sora and Riku had finally got done messing with their Adamantortoise. They quickly proceeded through the short path in the Vallas Media and took the teleporter to Spira. Once there, Riku opened the clue. "Hey," he said, "it's a Detour. Think you're up for it, kid? We've got a choice between Hot Springs and Hot Stuff." He read over the two tasks and the Kingdom Hearts boys opted for Hot Stuff. "Kairi is going to kill me for this," said Sora. They made their way to the sphere and warped to Guadosalam.

{Gurdy and Montblanc, Moogles, Currently in Second Place}

Gurdy and Montblanc had entered Chateau Leblanc and after having a talk with Ormi and Logos, they made their way to an upper room of the mansion. Inside, some familiar music was playing, a sultry tune that sounded like it could mean nothing but trouble. Then, they heard a female voice. "Moogles?! Well, boys, I'm waiting!" Gurdy and Montblanc turned and looked, and there was Leblanc laying in her bed of love on her back, ready for a nice massage. They flew over to her and began the task. As they did, a fast-paced energetic theme evocative of a ditzy former racer began to play.

{Gogo and Umaro, Weirdos, 7th to Depart: Half Past the Monkey's Ass}

Umaro ripped open the clue envelope and grunted. Gogo ripped open the clue envelope and grunted. "U-ghaaa!" A subtitle appeared on-screen: "Go to Vallas Media. Teleport to Spira. Ride chocobo if want." Gogo took the clue envelope from Umaro and ripped it. He read the clue, which told the team to go to Vallas Media, then teleport to Spira, and that they could ride chocobos if they wanted to. Umaro mounted a chocobo and grunted "U-ghaaa!" Gogo mounted a chocobo and grunted "U-ghaaaa!" Umaro sped away on his chocobo. Gogo sped away on his chocobo.

{Kefka & Leo, Soulmates, Currently in Third Place}

Leo & Kefka arrived at the Hot Springs and navigated their way through a group of Leblanc's goons who were shouting "Birdies, birdies, birdies, tastes just like chicken!" "Oh, shut it," crabbed Kefka. The two of them hopped in the Hot Springs exactly as they were, not even bothering to strip down. "Ooh, hot, hot, hot!" shouted Kefka. Leo simply sat there, serene. "What are you doing?!" shouted Kefka. "Yoga," responded Leo.

{Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Bestiality, Last to Depart, 14:01}

Red XIII used a claw to rip open the clue and then read it. He simply stood there for a few seconds and then Vincent gave him a sharp poke. "Um, Cyan, you have to read it out loud." "Cyan?!" shouted Red XIII, whose real name was Nanaki anyway. "Like anyone could confuse me with that guy?!" He read the clue out loud. "I'd like to see you on a chocobo, Chartreuse," said Vincent. "We're walking." "Just great," replied Red XIII.

{Cid Kramer and Cid X, Geezers, Currently in Fifth Place}

Without chocobos, it had been somewhat slow going for the two Cids, but they made decent time, thanks to Kramer's policy of always running whenever a monster got anywhere near them. They took the portal and arrived at Mt. Gagazet. Cid Kramer opened the clue. "I don't think I'm really up for either of these. I'm just a tired old man. But I suppose we'll do the massage." Cid X groaned. That was not the task he had wanted to do. "Fro sa?!"

{Wall-E and Papa, Robot and Slave, Currently in Sixth Place}

Sazh and Bhakti arrived next at Mt. Gagazet. Sazh opened the clue and read off the two choices. "Vrrrp-yah!" stated Bhakti. "Hot Springs" it is then," replied Sazh.

{Gogo and Umaro, Weirdos, Lost}

Umaro was lost at the entrance to Maharaba. Gogo was lost at the entrance to Maharaba. Realizing that there wasn't anything around that looked remotely like a portal, Umaro checked the map. Gogo checked the map.

{Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Bestiality, Currently in Seventh Place}

Both being fast runners and excellent at evading monsters, this team from Final Fantasy VII soon arrived at the portal. They took it and quickly found themselves in Spira. Vincent snagged the clue. "Let me read the clues from now on, Periwinkle. It's another of those Detours," he said. He read over the choices. "Get ready for a dip, we're doing Hot Springs." He and Red took the portal up, up and away.

{Sora and Riku, Faith of the Heart, Currently in Fourth Place}

Sora and Riku arrived at Chateau Leblanc, but not before briefly making a stop at Guadosalam's inn because they didn't know the meaning of "chateau." Upon arriving, they talked with Logos and Ormi, who told them that another team was already attempting the task. "What do you wanna do, Sora?" asked Riku. "Stay here!" replied Sora. "Let's just stay for right now and if it seems like it's taking too long, we can always go back and try the other." He began spinning his keyblade in a series of poses to try to impress Ormi and Logos. "Show-off," commented Riku.

{Gurdy and Montblanc, Furry, Halfway Through Massage}

Gurdy and Montblanc had completed five minutes of the ten minute massage and so far Leblanc seemed reasonably satisfied, having cried out in pain only once. Just then, she let out a particularly loud moan of pleasure. "Oh, yes, that's the spot! Yyyyes!" She sighed happily and Gurdy and Montblanc looked greatly pleased with themselves. They issued a couple of loud kupos.

{Cid X and Cid Kramer, Shidos, Currently in Fifth Place}

The Cids arrived at Chateau Leblanc and received the same news as Sora & Riku. They settled in and watched the Besaid Island boys, who were now engaged in a mock battle.

{Sazh and Bhatki, About to Be Crispified, Currently in Sixth Place}

Sazh and Bhakti arrived at the Hot Springs. When the goons saw Bhakti, they all just gave a loud snigger. Boko and Koko were just enjoying the water, while Leo continued his yoga, undeterred by Kefka's efforts to distract him. Sazh stripped down and jumped into the water, bringing Bhakti with him. Bhakti immediately began to crackle and fizz. "Oh, no! Oh, no! I forgot you wasn't waterproof! Hell no!!!!" Bhakti was fried. Sazh pulled him out of the water and began the task of repairing him.

{Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Odd Couple, Currently in Seventh Place}

Red XIII, being another not to have any clothes, simply leaped into the Hot Springs, giving everyone a big splash and temporarily throwing Leblanc's goons off their game. Vincent disrobed all but a bare bit of underwear, leading to several cheers and jeers. "Just wait," he said. He noticed Sazh frantically working to repair Bhakti and gave a dark chuckle.

{Gogo and Umaro, Mime and Mammoth, Currently in Last Place}
{Gogo and Umaro, Mime and Mammoth, Currently in Last Place}

Gogo and Umaro had finally found Vallas Media and the portal to Spira. Umaro leaped through the portal with a hearty roar. Gogo leaped through the portal with a hearty roar. Umaro arrived in Spira, opened the clue, read over the choices and grunted. He handed the clue to Gogo, who read over the choices, out loud and grunted. Umaro made a motion indicating the blue sphere and raced toward it. Gogo made the same motion and raced for it as well.

{Gurdy and Montblanc, Moogles, Currently in First Place}

"Ooh, that was good. How did you get to be so good?" asked Leblanc as the massage came to a close. Her satisfaction meter was through the roof. "I handle chocobos for a living, kupo!" replied Gurdy. "Chocobos love a good massage, kupo. And Montlbanc here has lots of practice when he's not busy directing his clan." "It's true," replied Montblanc. "After all, it's not like I'm out there actually fighting, kup-heh!" "Well, whatever loves," replied Leblanc, already starting to get bored. "Hurry up, take your clue and get out of here, so the next team can get in. I need another message. Just take your clue and go; you can read it once you're outside the Chateau." Montblanc and Gurdy thanked her, took their clue, and exited the Chateau. Ormi and Logos beckoned Sora and Riku to come forward. Outside the Chateau, Montblanc opened the clue. "Make your way out of Guadosalam and to the Thunder Plains's first lightning rod tower. Caution: U-Turn Ahead." "A U-Turn, kupo! Kupo! Kupo!" shouted Gurdy. "Just what I've been wanting! Let's fly!"

{Boko and Koko, Egg-Layers, Currently in Second Place}

A Ronso warrior entered the Hot Springs and informed Boko and Koko that there their thirty minutes were up. The chocobos both emitted loud "kwehs" that indicated joy. The Ronso warrior gave them their clue which directed them to take the specially created teleport pad that was at the edge of the Hot Springs, then hop the save sphere to Guadosalam. As they teleported away one of the Dr. Goons could be heard to mutter "There goes our birdy breakfast." He and the others resumed various hecklings of the other teams that were there-- Kefka and Leo, Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Gogo and Umaro and Sazh and Bhakti. Sazh looked as if he might be getting close to completing repairs.

{Montblanc and Gurdy, Moogles, Currently in First Place}

Montblanc and Gurdy reached the cluebox for the U-Turn and noticed something-- in the upper left hand corrner, there was the word BLIND in bright red letters. Gippal appeared to explain:

A U-Turn appears at the end of a Detour and allows one team to force another to turn back and complete the Detour task that they did not previously complete. And this is a Blind U-Turn, which means that the team that uses it may choose to remain anonymous.

The leg will continue with Part 2 in the next post...

---------- Post added at 06:34 AM ---------- Previous post was at 06:33 AM ----------

Episode 4: Part 2

{Montblanc and Gurdy, Moogling, Currently in First Place}

"Time to get those two out of the race," said Gurdy. "We choose to U-Turn Sora & Riku." He slapped up a picture of Sora and Riku, then Montblanc opened the next clue. "Ooh, there's a Fast Forward," he said. Gippal appeared again:

A Fast Forward allows one team to skip all remaining tasks and proceed directly to the Pit Stop. Normally, a Fast Forward appears at the beginning of the leg, but in this case it appears following the Blind U-Turn, meaning that whatever team has been U-Turned will most likely have almost no chance of being able to complete it. Teams may only use the Fast Forward once per race, so it is up to them to decide when it is most advantageous to use it.
For this Fast Forward, any team hoping to snag the Fast Forward award must proceed to the Moonflow. Once there, they will find Tobli and troupe of "musishuns" and Hypello, who will instruct them in a performance routine. They must then join the group and successfully complete the routine in order to obtain their next clue. Teams are allowed a total of three mistakes, so long as no other team is waiting to complete the Fast Forward. Should another team arrive, any mistake will force the currently performing team to step aside and give another their shot. Whichever team completes this task first will claim the Fast Forward award and potentially have the great pleasure of being the first one to see me.

{Montblanc and Gurdy, Kupo, Currently in First Place}

"Do we do it?" asked Gurdy. "No way," replied Montblanc. "We're in first place, kupooooo! I'd rather than not risk it, kupo. Let's just see what the next task is." "Kufeh," said Gurdy. "Mrm, kupo. Okay, let's do it." He read the next clue, which was a Route Info.

"Make your way through the Thunder Plains, dodging lightning strikes along the way. The lightning strikes do not actually present mortal danger, but do deliver quite a jolt. If at any time you are hit by lightning a combined total of six times, your team will be automatically transported back to this tower, kupo. All right, time to fly!" He and Montlbanc began the treacherous journey through the Plains.

{Sora and Riku, Former Heartless, Currently in Third Place}

Sora and Riku completed the massage, but not without some hangups. "Eh, that was just all right, loves," Leblanc told them. Still, you did do enough, so here's your next clue. Remember, don't open it until you've left the Chateau, loves." Sora and Riku gave a victory pose, but didn't forget to thank Leblanc. They exited the Chateau and as they read over the clue and got moving, Ormi and Logos ushered the two Cids into Leblanc's chambre.

{Sazh and Bhakti, Cargo Ship, Currently in Last Place}

Sazh put the finishing touches on his repairs of Bhakti, then the two returned to the teleporter, hopped the sphere and transported to Guadosalam. They were switching tasks.

{Leo and Kefka, Sanity and Insanity, Currently in Fourth Place}

Meanwhile, Kefka and Leo were completing their thirty minutes. Leo was just finishing a downward-facing dog while Kefka was engaged in some dark mutterings. Their thirty minutes ended and the Ronso warrior approached. Kefka snatched the clue, not even bothering to thank him and made off for the teleporter, Leo getting up with a jolt as he realized that they were on the move again.

{Boko and Koko, Still Not Eaten, Currently in Second Place}

Boko and Koko arrived in the Thunder Plains and kwehed that they couldn't U-Turn because it was already being used. They then read over the information about the Fast Forward and opted to take a pass. They began moving towards the Thunder Plains. It made a very comical sight as Boko was hit by a lightning strike.

{Cid X and Cid Kramer, Failures, Currently in Fifth Place}

The two Cids were booted from Leblanc's chambre eight minutes into the massage after Leblanc emitted her fifth gasp of deep pain. Ormi and Logos ushered in the waiting Sazh and Bhakti, who began the task, Bhakti extending his robotic arms to perform the massage.

The Cids were left to wait in the lobby of the Chateau. "Great going, gramps," grumbled Cid X. "Hey, who you callin' Gramps?!" replied Cid K. "Edea and I never even had any kids." "It's an expression!" shouted Cid X. "Sheesh. Drec kio'c cu ihreb, ed'c y fuhtan rec pisc tuh'd vymm uvv." "And stop speaking that!" groused Cid K. "Can't understand a word!" said Cid K. Cid X started banging his head.

{Sora and Riku, Friends, Currently in Third Place}

The Kingdom Hearts boys entered the Thunder Plains, raced for the next clue and then ground a halt as they saw the Blind U-Turn. "Just great!" said Riku. "We've been U-Turned! Come on Sora, let's get moving!" Sora and Riku zipped out of Thunder Plains, Sora doing a dodge roll to avoid a lightning strike. They returned to the save sphere, warped to Mt. Gagazet, then teleported to the Hot Springs.

{Leo and Kefka, Antagonists, Currently in Third Place}

Leo and Kefka arrived at the cluebox. "Gwa!" shouted Kefka. "We can't U-Turn any of those fools 'cause somebody already did it to those boys. Just lookin' at those two makes me sick!" "Can we get on with it?" asked Leo. "Tch, fine," muttered Kefka. He read off the information about crossing the Thunder Plains and lightning strikes and they were off.

{Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Bestiality, Currently in Fourth Place}

Red XIII was enduring some major teasing from Leblanc's gang, but he looked like didn't even care. He was doing laps around the Hot Springs. Vincent had transformed into his Galian Beast form and just growled at the goons, who weren't the least bit impressed. They were approached by a Ronso, who directed them to exit the Hot Springs. Vincent morphed back into his human form and donned his flowing red cape with a thrust that caused the Fem-Goons to give sighs of pleasure, before they realized what they were doing and went to heckling Umaro and Gogo. Umaro roared at the Fem-Goons. Gogo roared at the Fem-Goons. The Ronso handed Vincent and Red their next clue. They read off the details and began making their way.

{Leo and Kefka, Antagonists, Currently in Third Place}

Leo and Kefka reached the Calm Lands Travel Agency portion of the Thunder Plains, a brief respite from the dangerous lightning strikes. Just then, Kefka noticed a blue sphere. "Ha, one of those teleport sphere things! We'll teleport right to Macalania!" "Um..." Leo started to say, but Kefka just grabbed him and the two teleported away. They was a loud cymbal crash accompanied by a crash of thunder.

{Sazh and Bhakti, Father and Robot, Currently in Sixth Place}

Sazh and Bhakti completed the ten minute massage. It was a new experience for Leblanc, who had never been massaged by a robot before, but she found it very pleasurable, emitting several great gasps of pleasure. "Wow, that was goodddd," she moaned. She took a moment to gather herself, then handed Sazh the next clue. "Now, remember, you two, don't open that just until you're outside the Chateau. Come on, get going! We're doing a race, here!" Sazh and Bhakti exited the Chateau and the Cids were ushered in to perform the task.

{Red XIII and Vincent Valentine, Bestiality, Currently in Fourth Place}

The vampire and leopard arrived at the Thunder Plains and read over the information. They chose to skip the Fast Forward and began making their way through the Thunder Plains.

{Umaro and Gogo, Gogo and Umaro, Currently in Seventh Place}

Leblanc's goons had been completely unable to ruffle the feathers of these two. Umaro just kept growling at them and Gogo parroted everything they said, occasionally inserting a rude comment of his own. "Your mama wears army boots!" he shouted, but just then, a Ronso approached him and Umaro. He directed them out of the Hot Springs and gave them their next clue. Umaro read over the clue. Gogo read the clue out loud. The two took the teleport pad, then warped to Guadosalam. Just then, one of the Fem-Goons received a phone call from Gippal. "Leblanc says you're all fired. Return to Chateau Leblanc for parting instructions. Sora and Riku, I free you."

{Cid X and Cid Highwind, Cids, Currently in Seventh Place}

The two Cids just barely managed to complete the massage on their second go. �Not bad, loves,� Leblanc told them, �but it could have been better. Still, you pass. Here, take your clue and go.� The Cids left and just then, Leblanc received a call from Gippal. "Hey, uh, sorry, Leblanc. Looks like that was the last team for this task. No more massages for you!" "Oh, yeah?!" replied Leblanc. "Well, we'll just see about that! Boys, get in here!" "Yes, boss!" chirruped Ormi and Logos.

{Bhakti and Sazh, Robot and Father, Currently in Sixth Place}

Sazh and Bhakti arrived at the Thunder Plains. "Awright," said Sazh. "Let's do this!" He opened up the clue. "Make your way thorugh the Thunder Plains, dodging lightning strikes! Ah, hell no! How we gonna do that with you here? You're like a lightning magnet. Oh, wait, I know!" Sazh began installing a shield on Bhakti. It was costing time, but at least it would save them later, unlike with the Hot Springs.

{Leo and Kefka, Antagonists, Currently in First Place}

Having warped directly to Macalania, Leo and Kefka easily reached the next clue box before any of the other teams. Leo read off the clue "Travel a short distance through the woods to the Calm Lands and find your next clue." The two took off, completely missing the red and yellow arrows indicating the path to the Calm Lands.

{Riku and Sora, Your Heart Belongs to Me, Currently in Last Place}

Riku and Sora finished the task in a relaxed state and received their clue. They made their way to Guadosalam.

{Cid Kramer and Cid X, They Who Are Cids, Currently in Seventh Place}

"Fast Forward," read Cid Kramer. "You wanna go for it?"? "Oh, what the heck, pops!" replied Cid X. "We gotta do something to get back in this race. Let's move!" The two Cids made their way back out of the Thunder Plains and started for the Moonflow.
{Umaro and Gogo, Beast-Thingy and Mimic, Currently in Seventh Place}

Umaro and Gogo arrived at the Thunder Plains where Sazh was finishing the upgrade on Bhakti. Both teams began making their way through the Thunder Plains at the same time.

{Leo and Kefka, Antagonists, Currently in First Place}

Thanks to their "shortcut," Leo and Kefka easily arrived first at the cluebox not far from the entrance to the Maclania Woods. Leo read the clue: "Follow the marked path to the Calm Lands and find one of eight waiting chocobos, which will have your next clue."

"I hate those damn birds," said Kefka. "I'd like to fry one up and make me a snack. Oh, well, let's go!"

Leo and Kefka dashed off towards the marked path to the Calm Lands.

{Riku and Sora, Doesn't Believe in Santa / Has Met Santa, Currently in Last Place}

Riku and Sora arrived at the Thunder Plains and read over the clue. "Hey, Sora, wanna try the Fast Forward?" "The Fast Forward?!" asked Sora. "Aren't we in last?" "Yeah, but, hey, let's go for it! We gotta do something to get back in this race!" Sora still wasn't sure, but he saw a certain logic in this, so he and Riku exited the Thunder Plains and made for the Moonflow.

{Cid Kramer and Cid X, Cids, Attempting Fast Forward}

The two Cids arrived at the Moonflow and made their way until they found a staging area where a group of musicians were putting on a show. It was a colorful affair with hypello and some flavor brought in from the Macalania Woods. And standing next to a banner featuring the show's familiar red and yellow colors was a bird-man dressed in an outfit consisting largely of those colors. This was Tobli, a highly popular producer of entertainment in Spira, though he wasn't always so. Tobli was jumping up and down, excited by the arrival of the team. "Oh, I'm so glad you're here, yep yep. We can't have a show without performers, that's you, that is!" He indicated the stage where the band was playing. "Now, just remember," he gabbled, "you'll have three tries. One, two, three! So just watch for a while - the musicians - how they play, how they move, and then just get up on stage and do it! Just try to have fun! Fun, fun, fun!"

The two Cids looked doubtful about this, but they settled in to watch the musicians.

{Montblanc and Gurdy, Moogles, Currently in Second Place}

Being swift, fast-flying moogles, Montblanc and Gurdy had little trouble dodging the fierce lightning strikes of the Gandof Thunder Plains. They arrived in Macalania, read over the clue and zipped for the path to the Calm Lands.

{Boko and Koko, Chocobos, Currently in Third Place}

Despite the early lightning strike to Boko, these two finished their dash through the Thunder Plains without any further electrifying moments. Koko used her beak to open the clue and these two sprinted for the Calm Lands, with a loud, hearty wark.

{Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Electrified, Currently in Fourth Place}

Red XIII had not had the easiest time navigating the Thunder Plains and just as they reached the edge, Red was hit with a third lightning strike. He was teleported back to the beginning. Vincent gaped at the loss of his partner, then he felt a tingling sensation and realized that he too was being teleported. Both racers were now standing back by the clue box. "Just great," muttered Vincent. He and Red XIII tried again on the long trek through the Calm Lands.

{Sazh and Bhakti, Not Electrified Currently in Fourth Place}

Taking the time to modify Bhakti had really helped out and now this team retrieved the clue in the Macalania Woods. They made for the Calm Lands.

{Kefka and Leo, Dating, Currently in First Place}

Leo and Kefka soon arrived at the Calm Lands and dashed for one of the waiting chocobos. Hanging around its neck was a clue, which Leo pulled off and read: "Roadblock. Who's ready to soar amongst the heights?"

{Announcer Gippal}

A Roadblock is a task that only one team member may perform. In this Roadblock, that racer must board the personal chocobo their team has just found, then navigate it to the nearby Remiem Temple, a lost Yevon Temple of Spira that has been recently rediscovered. Once there, they must race the chocobo against a local champion chocobo, while doing their best to avoid knocking into cones along the course. If they beat the champion chocobo, he will award them their next clue, but if not, they must return to the beginning of the course and try again. This task is first come, first serve, so if other racers are waiting, they must be given a shot first.

{Kefka and Leo, Not Fans of Birds, Currently in First Place}

Kefka rolled his eyes. "There's no way I'm doing it if has anything to do with these damn birds," he grumbled. "You do it." "Fine!" said Leo. "But this is now my third Roadblock. You need to start doing some too." Kefka just muttered darkly and fingered something that looked like a vile of poison. Leo hopped on one of the chocobos and made for Remiem Temple.

{Cid X and Cid Kramer, Ciddies, Attempting Fast Forward}

The two Cids failed their first attempt at the Fast Forward miserably. No talent, no groove; it was a disaster. Cid X swore in Al Bhed and then, as if to heap troubles onto their troubles...

{Riku and Sora, When You're the Best of Friends / Having So Much Together / You're Not Even Aware You're Such a Funny Pair�}

Sora and Riku sprinted up to the Fast Forward. Tobli directed the two Cids to step off the stage and then gave his babbling explanation to the pair from the Kingdom Hearts verse. The two best friends made their way onstage to attempt the Fast Forward. The two Cids could only look on in despair.

{Umaro and Gogo, Beast-Thingy and Mimic, Currently in Fifth Place}

Umaro arrived at the cluebox in the Macalania Woods, read over the clue and made his way to the Calm Lands. Gogo arrived at the cluebox, read the clue out loud and made his way to the Calm Lands.

{Leo, Roadblock}

Leo had little trouble finding the Remiem Temple. He spotted the champion chocobo in an area over on the left. He went up to it and it told him to loop around to the other side of the temple to begin the challenge of a lifetime. He made his way over to the other side and the race was on!

{Sora & Riku, Fast Forward}

Sora & Riku were keeping up with the performance and looking like they were having a great time. Seeing the two friends doing so well, the Cids groaned. "Wanna go back to the Thunder Plains?" asked Cid Kramer. Cid X, who didn't feel like making any decisions, told him that it was up to him. Kramer nodded and the two sprinted away (or maybe not quite sprinted, given their age) for the Thunder Plains.

{Montblanc and Gurdy, Moogles, Currently in Second Place}

The moogles arrived second at the Thunder Plains. They read over the clue. "You, kupo," said Montblanc. "Obviously. Good luck, kupopo!" Gurdy mounted his chocobo and began making his way to Remiem Temple. Meanwhile, Montblanc turned to Kefka. "Hey, Se�or Psychopath get here so quickly, kupo?" "What was that?!" shouted Kefka, hopping up and down. "Oh, nothing, kupo," replied Montblanc. "I was just in awe of your amazing speed. Wanted to know how you do it." "Oh!" said Kefka, surprised and delighted that apparently someone wasn't treating him like the deranged maniac that he was. "It's just magic, I suppose. I have a lot of magic on my side." "And a lot of something else, kupo," muttered Montblanc. "What?!" growled Kefka. "Oh, oh, gravitas, kupo!" "Gravitas!?" asked Kefka. "What's gravitas?" "You know, I'm still trying to figure that out myself, kupo," replied Montblanc.

{Boko and Koko, Chocobos, Currently in Third Place}

Boko and Koko read the teaser for the Roadblock. "You've already done two, so I'll do this one," warked Koko. "Let's see what it's about... What?! Wark! Wark!"

{Species Transformation � Announcer Gippal}

In The Amazing Final Fantasy Race, we try to make allowances for all species to race. In the event of a task such as this, a team or individual racer may request a species transformation to human. Racers must be careful, as a team may only use this magical power a total of three times during the race.

{Boko and Koko, Chocobos, Currently in Third Place}

"Good luck, wark!" Boko told Koko as magical sparkles appeared and Koko was transformed into an odd, feathered, human. "Oh, don't look, honey," squawked Koko. "I look dreadful!" "It's okay!" warbled Boko, whom Koko was still able to understand perfectly. "Just hurry through the task! They're one of our own, it should be no trouble, kweh!" Koko boarded the chocobo, rather clumsily, but once she was on, she found herself very comfortable. She directed the chocobo and they made their way to Remiem Temple.

{Sazh and Bhakti, Gepetto and Pinocchio, Currently in Fourth Place}

Sazh and Bhakti arrived at the Calm Lands and Sazh read over the clue. He decided to complete the task and was relieved when it he saw what it involved. "Chocobos! Ah yeah! I remember riding them all over Pulse. Too bad Chocobo Chick's not here. He would love this. Well, I'll catch ya' later, Bhakti." He headed for Remiem Temple.

{Leo, Roadblock}

Leo arrived at the end of the course. As he did, he heard a loud "kweh!" from behind him. He looked back and saw a chocobo approaching from about 50 feet back. He turned back around and a sign lit up: "YOU WIN!" Seeing this, the chocobo behind him drooped its feathers and was automatically transported off the course to get out of the way of the other Roadblockers. Leo was then instantly transported back to the start of the course. Another chocobo approached him and gave him a clue. It warked at him and he heard a voice in his head which translated "Do not open this clue until you have returned to your partner."

{Umaro and Gogo, Umaro and Gogo, Currently in Fifth Place}

Umaro and Gogo arrived at the Calm Lands. Umaro read over the clue. Gogo read the clue out loud. "This will be easy!" said Gogo. "The secret to being a mimic is to just do what others do. So I'll just watch the other racers doing the Roadblock and I'll be fine." Umaro grunted. It was unclear exactly what he was trying to say, but it seemed to be something along the lines of, "That's what you say every leg." Gogo grunted, then hopped onto the chocobo and made his way to Remiem Temple.

{Cid X and Cid Kramer, "Yo, Old Guys!," Currently in Last Place}

The two Cids returned to the Thunder Plains and began making their way through, doing their best to dodge the lightning bolts.

{Sora and Riku, Fast Forward}

Sora and Riku completed their on-stage performance and gave a victory pose. They exited stage left and Tobli raced over to them. "Oh, oh, absolutely fantastic! The passion! The talent! I've found some new stars! Oh, yes, yes, yes, I can't forget this here!" He handed Sora & Riku the Fast Forward award. "Congratulations, you two! Oh, and do, do say hi to Gippal for me when you see him! I've been hoping to get him on-stage for a long time, yep yep! Ooh, I better get going! Lots to do! Busy, busy, busy!"

Sora looked at the bustling, bumbling, beak-man and just shook his head. "And I thought you were passionate," said Riku. "Let's find out where we're going." He ripped open the Fast Forward award. "Make your way to blue sphere to your left and transport directly to the Pit Stop, the Calm Lands chocobo ranch.

{Announcer Gippal}

Having won the Fast Forward, Sora & Riku may now skip all remaining tasks and transport directly to here, the Calm Lands chocobo ranch, the Pit Stop for this leg of the race.

Read the final part of the race in the next post!

---------- Post added at 06:34 AM ---------- Previous post was at 06:34 AM ----------

Episode 4: Part 3

{Sora and Riku, Currently in First Place}

"Pit Stop, here we come!" shouted Sora. He and Riku raced to the blue sphere and were immediately transported to the entrance of the Chocobo Ranch. There, standing in front of the Pit Stop mat, was Gippal and next to him, the owner and manager of the ranch, Clasko, a former chocobo knight and tour guide for the Youth League. Clasko looked nervous, as he always did when forced to speak to anyone in public. Sora and Riku stepped on the mat in another victory pose, flashing the Fast Forward award.

"Uh, uh, welcome to the Calm Lands," jibbered Clasko.
"Sora and Riku, you're team number one!" declared Gippal. Sora and Riku hopped high in the air. Sora twirled his keyblade and Riku, the Way to Dawn. Gippal was a bit blown back by their enthusiasm. "Oh yeah," said Sora, "that beak-man told us to say 'hi'!" Gippal frowned. "Oh, him. He's been bugging me to do that show of his for weeks now. Thinks getting the host of The Amazing Final Fantasy Race would do wonders for publicity. But Yuna warned me about him. Oh yeah, I almost forgot. I have some good news for you guys. As the winners of this leg of the race, you've won a pair of buggies, courtesy of Cosmo Canyon from the Planet, and you can enjoy those after the race!" This resulted in another loud display of exuberance from Sora and Riku. Gippal took a minute to recover and then asked, "So, you two got U-Turned in this leg? And yet, here you are, in first place. How do you do it?" "It's just natural talent," said Riku. "We're winning this race, and nothing can stop us. Not Adamantortoises, not chocobos, not crazed maniacs, nothing! And certainly not a U-Turn!� �Any ideas as to who did it?� asked Gippal. �We have our suspicions,� said Riku, �but no, we don�t know. If we find out, though��

{Interview, Sora and Riku}

"Our friendship just keeps growing stronger," interviewed Sora. "As long as we're racing together, nothing can stop us." "Hey, don't get all mushy!" shouted Riku. Sora made as if to hug Riku and Riku threw out his arms in defense. "Hey, hey, hey!"

{Leo and Kefka, Antagonists, Currently in Second Place}

Leo returned to Kefka and together they opened the clue. "Ride the chocobos and make your way to the Pit Stop for this leg of the race, the Calm Lands Chocobo Ranch."

{Announcer Gippal}

Teams must now make their way via chocobos to the Calm Lands Chocobo Ranch. Once an arena where the toughest summoners and guardians battled fierce beasts for training and prizes, it is now home to Spira's most elite Chocobo Ranch. Hosted by Clasko, this Ranch is the Pit Stop for this leg of the race. The last team to check in here will be eliminated. That's right, none of this namby-pamby, may stuff. We're kickin' somebody offa here!

"Come on, Kefka, let's go!" shouted Leo, feeling very enthusiastic. "I really hate these birds..." muttered Kefka, but he got on one anyway and together the two lovebirds shot off for the chocobo ranch.

{Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Bestiality, Currently in Seventh Place}

Red and Vinny finally arrived at the Calm Lands after their electrifying experience at the Thunder Plains. They read over the Roadblock clue. "Me!" said Red XIII. "You?!" asked Vincent. "Yeah, I think I know what this is and I've always wanted to do this." "Well, all right," said Vincent. Red XIII read over the rest of the clue. It made quite a sight to see the four legged Red splayed on a chocobo, but somehow he managed to do it and then he was off.

{Montlbanc and Gurdy, Winged Fluffies, Currently in Third Place}

Montblanc returned to Gurdy, having easily won the race. Both moogles were delighted when they saw that they would be riding chocobos to the Pit Stop! "Come on, kupo!" said Gurdy. "Let's ride!" They shot off for the Calm Lands.

{Montblanc: Interview}

"I think we're finally where we need to be in this race," said Montblanc. "We're out to prove that us moogles can do it too and the race isn't just for humanoids. And, well, I'm out to prove that I'm not the guy who just sends other people out on Missions while I sit back and let everyone else do all the dirty, kupo."

{Leo and Kefka, Antagonists, Currently in Second Place}

Leo and Kefka dismounted from their chocobos and hit the mat. Gippal gave them a stern look and then told them, "Kefka and Leo, you're the second team to arrive." Kefka immediately went into a sort of weird cheering dance, but Leo didn't do any such thing - he had noticed Gippal's phrasing and was worried. "However, I'm afraid you two have broken a race rule." "WHAT???!!!" thundered Kefka, his eyes bugging out. "When you got your clue at the Thunder Plains, it clearly instructed you to travel through the Plains and dodge lightning strikes along the way. You did not complete this task, but instead used a sphere to transport to Macalania Woods. Because of this, you have received a thirty minute penalty." Leo groaned and Kefka looked about ready to go One Winged Angel on Gippal, and that was before he even heard the rest. "Sorry, Kefka, I'm afraid I'm not done yet. In addition to the thirty minute time penalty, you must complete a penalty task. Just head over to that blue sphere there (he indicated one not far inside the ranch, ahead from a stall where Clasko normally stood) and you'll be automatically transported for your penalty task."

{Leo and Kefka, Caught Cheating � Announcer Gippal}

Gippal stood in front of a dark, misty background. "Having been caught cheating, Leo and Kefka must now perform a penalty task. Yeah, sure, it costs us more, but here at The Amazing Final Fantasy Race, we spare no expense for your entertainment and amusement. For this penalty task, Leo and Kefka must use the blue sphere and transport to a mystery location. Once there, they will be met by a special guest who will provide them with more information."

"Well, good luck, guys!" snarked Gippal. "Seems you're already familiar with these spheres!" Kefka gave Gippal a dark look that very much suggested he'd find poison in his cup the next time he went for his refreshment. He and Leo ran over to the blue sphere and found themselves spinning, spinning away... into someplace not on Spira. As they opened their eyes, they found themselves in a world shaped like their own, two-dimensional and differently colored. Very brightly colored, in fact. Just then, they heard a loud, Latin-American childish female voice. "�Hola!" exclaimed the voice. "Soy Dora! Need your help to complete the task!" "Oh, hell no!" shouted Kefka.

{Boko and Koko, Currently in Third Place}

Riding one of her own turned out to be a breeze for Koko. Despite not being familiar with chocobo riding, she was able to communicate with her race chocobo on another level. She beat the champion by a good 100 feet and received the "YOU WIN!" message. She made her way back to Boko, but not before transforming back into a chocobo. "Thank goodness," warked Boko. "Um, um, not they're not beautiful no matter what the species!" They read over the clue and noticed a little note: "Species Exemption: In the event you are already a chocobo, you may proceed to the Pit Stop on foot." The husband and wife chocobos sprinted for the Calm Lands Chocobo Ranch.

{Gurdy and Montblanc, Moogles, Currently in Second Place}

Gurdy and Montblanc arrived at the Pit Stop and dismounted from their chocobos. They fly over the mat and floated down so that they could stand on it. Gippal looked down at them and told them "Montblanc and Gurdy, you're the third team to arrive." Both of them looked disappointed, but then Gippal's face lit up. "No, no, it's good news! Kefka & Leo are currently performing a penalty task, so that means you're team number two!" Montblanc and Gurdy both let out a loud kupo. "So you two chose to use your U-Turn in this leg of the race?" "Kupo," replied Montblanc. "We wanted to get those Kingdom Hearts boys out of the race. And we haven't seen them, so pom-poms crossed, eh?" "Well, you'll find out," said Gippal.

{Sazh, Roadblock}

Despite his past experience with chocobos, Sazh had a tricky time on the course. The champion chocobo was having a run of good luck. But just as they were getting to the end, he sensed an opening. He swerved his chocobo, darted forward and beat the champion chocobo by two seconds. The "YOU WIN!" message appeared; he was provided with his clue and then transported back. He checked back in with Bhakti and they read over the Pit Stop clue, then hopped chocobos to make their way to the Ranch.

{Kefka and Leo, Cheaters, Penalty Task}

Kefka and Leo's assigned penalty task was a matching game. It was one of those boards where you had to open a square and see if there was a match. If they got a match, the squares would stay open, but if not, they would close up and they would have to try again. So far, they only had two matches out of twenty - two pictures of Dora & two pictures of Swiper the sneaky fox. They had just revealed a picture of a big red chicken, but despaired when the next picture turned out to be a monkey named Boots.

{Boko and Koko, Chocobos, Currently in Third Place}

Boko and Koko arrived at the Chocobo Ranch. "Boko and Koko, you're the fourth team to arrive. However, Kefka and Leo are currently waiting out a penalty task, so you're actually Team #3!" Boko and Koko both emitted loud "kwehs." "So," said Gippal, "Koko, you underwent something of a transformative experience in this leg?" "I don't want to talk about it," warked Koko.

{Kefka and Leo, Cheaters, Penalty Task}

Kefka and Leo were picking up speed and had now completed half the matches. Their latest match was two pictures of a boy named Diego.

{Red XIII, Roadblock}

Red XIII had surged ahead, as Gogo had hung behind to watch what was happening with the task. That might not have been the best choice for Gogo, though, as Red's riding experience and generally awkward positioning caught up to him. He was beat by the champion chocobo by a good twenty feet. He growled and was automatically transported back to the start of the course to give it another try.

{Sazh and Bhakti, Dave and HAL, Currently in Fourth Place}

Sazh and Bhakti were the next team to arrive at the Pit Stop. Gippal had gotten bored of telling teams about Kefka and Leo's penalty task, so... "Sazh and Bhakti, you're team #4!" "Not a bad finish," said Sazh," but we couldn't done better." Bhatki beeped his agreement and this team left the mat to get settled in the Pit Stop.

{Kefka and Leo, Cheaters, Penalty Task}

Kefka and Leo were really moving now and had completed 15 out of the 20 matches. Their latest match was two Backpacks.

{Gogo, Roadblock}

Gogo might have been a mime, but he wasn't dumb, so he knew that maybe it would be better to not do what Red had done. He actually turned out to be a pretty zippy chocobo rider, choosing instead to imitate the champion chocobo, mark for mark, until right at the very end when he swerved around it and received the "YOU WIN!" message. "The secret to being a mimic," he said, "is to do what others do... but do it better!" He was transported back to the starting point, and he and Umaro made their way to the Chocobo Ranch.

{Cid X and Cid Kramer, Cids, Currently in Seventh Place}

The two Cids finally arrived in the Calm Lands. They read over the clue. "Me," muttered Cid X. "I don't even want to think about you trying to ride a chocobo, assuming that's what this is." He read over the remainder of the clue, confirmed the details of the task, and made his way for Remiem Temple.

{Red XIII, Roadblock}

Red XIII had taken the opportunity to watch Gogo and decided to try a similar strategy himself. It was another difficult race for him, but this time, it paid off. He reached the end of the course, received the "YOU WIN!" message and was transported back.

{Gogo and Umaro, Mime and Beast, Currently in Fifth Place}

"Gogo and Umaro, you're team number five!" announced Gippal. Umaro roared in delight. Gogo roared in delight. Gippal didn't try to engage them any further, since they weren't exactly great conversationalists. He just directed them off the mat into the main Pit Stop area.

{Kefka and Leo, Cheaters, Penalty Task}

Kefka and Leo completed their second-to-last match, a pair of Maps and the final two flaps were opened automatically - two pictures of the Grumpy Old Troll. They were approached by Dora who told them "!Muy bueno!" Now hop into this picture to get back to the Pit Stop! !Vamonos!" "Vamonos yourself, muttered Leo," who, while not like Kefka, was becoming quite fed up with this leg himself. The two hopped into the picture and found themselves back by the blue sphere. "Oh, it's you two," said Gippal. "Okay, now make your way over there and sit down - you've got a thirty minute wait. If all the other remaining teams check in before the time is up, you will be eliminated."

{Cid X, Roadblock}

Cid X arrived again at the end of the race course, having already failed once, and was again greeted by the sign reading "YOU LOSE." He and his chocobo were again teleported back to the start of the race course. Grawh!" snarled Cid. "Drec pedac! The chocobo is BROKEN. This is shoopuf-****." He kicked at the air and was then transported back to the start of the course.

{Vincent Valentine and Red XIII, Bestiality, Currently in Sixth Place}

Red XIII loped up to the Pit Stop mat, Vincent trailing just behind, his red cape whipping in the breeze. "Come on, come on, come on, Gippal!" panted Red. "We need some good news!" Gippal gave the classic eyebrow pop, a mannerism he had recently adopted. Over in the stall, Kefka and Leo stewed, as they could hear exactly what was going on. "You're team number six!" Gippal told them. "Red, you had a new experience today, didn't you?" "I think chocobos are my new favorite things, Gippal. The wind in my fur, the speed! This race is bringing out my fun side!"

{Cid X, Roadblock}

After fuming some more, Cid took a minute to collect himself. "If that girl Yuna can do this," he said to himself, "there's no way I can't!" He shot off down the course and this time he let nothing stand in his way. The champion chocobo could only watch a blur go by as Cid put his chocobo through its paces. He arrived at the finish line well over hundred feet of the champion chocobo and received the "YOU WIN!" message. He was transported to the start of the course, where he told Cid Kramer to get it in gear. "I think we're in last, but we could still be in this!" The two zipped through the Calm Lands and arrived at the Calm Lands Chocobo Ranch. They dismounted and made their way to the mat as fast they could, Cid X arriving first and Cid Kramer coming in a few seconds behind.

Gippal paused... and then... "Cid and Cid, you're the last team to arrive." Both Cids sagged their shoulders, but then... "However, Kefka and Leo violated a race rule and had to complete a penalty task, followed by a thirty minute time penalty." (He indicated the stall.) "They are over there, waiting out the penalty right now, so I'm pleased to tell you, you're Team #7!" The two Cids entire aspects changed and both let out loud cheers. After a couple of hearty pats-on-the-backs and fist-bumps, they vacated the mat to check in. "Kefka and Leo, come on over," called Gippal. Kefka and Leo dragged themselves back over to the mat. "Kefka and Leo, all other teams have now checked in. I'm sorry to tell you you've just been eliminated from The Amazing Final Fantasy Race.�

Kefka made a sudden movement towards Gippal, and Leo, sensing his partner's intentions, tried to hold him back, but Kefka knocked him aside. "Take this!" he shouted at Gippal. "Flare!" Nothing happened and Gippal just looked bemused. �Meteor! Ultima!� Kefka stomped up and down, but nothing happened whatsoever. Gippal chuckled. "Did you really think that after all of the lunatics, sociopaths and homicidal maniacs we've had cast on this series that I wouldn't take precautions?" (Flashbacks of Fratley, Amarant & Lani and Cid Highwind were shown.) He held up his machine gun. "Ec ed zicd sa, un yna dra nylanc uh drec caycuh naymmo tisp? I had an anti-magic field installed on this baby for just such a situation. Kiyntc, dyga res yfyo!"

A group of heavily armed Al Bhed appeared and began dragging the maniacal Kefka away from Gippal. Kefka struggled and ranted, but it was no good. As they led him away, Gippal turned to Leo. "Quite a way to go, eh?" "Dramatic, but not exactly surprising," said Leo. "I had a feeling something like this was coming." "Why'd you ever go on the race with that guy in the first place?" asked Gippal. "I wanted to run the race," explained Leo, "but everyone else from my world was busy. Kefka said he wanted the million dollars, and it was either him or no-go, so I went. But now, I think everyone's going to remember me as that guy who went on The Amazing Final Fantasy Race with that maniac." "Well, you did try to save me," said Gippal. "I won't forget that." Leo nodded gratefully. He walked away from the Pit Stop mat. Gippal twirled his gun and the scene faded to black.

Stay tuned for the Early Final Fantasy Show!

---------- Post added at 06:35 AM ---------- Previous post was at 06:34 AM ----------

Episode 4: Early Show

(Leblanc was kickin' it back amore-style, relaxing in her fluffy pink chair in the Studio of Love. Surrounding the chair were two loveseats. On one sat General Leo and in another sat Gippal, the host of The Amazingly Fake Final Fantasy Race. Parked in front the entire setup was a stand bearing a large HDTV depicting a jail cell elsewhere in the world of Spira.)

LEBLANC: And that, loves, is how the Gullwings, or should I say the Dullwings, got Punk'd. Such amateurs. But enough of them! It's time to have a chat with the latest castoffs from The Amazingly Fake Final Fantasy Race. And due to certain circumstances, we're pleased to be able to talk with the show's host, Gippal, as well! Here they are, right here!

(The studio audience let out a big cheer as Gippal stood up and waved to the crowd. There was some polite applause as Leo did the same.)

LEBLANC: And if I could have your eyes on the television screen, herrrrre's Kefka!

(For the viewers at home, the feed cut away from the television monitor to a camera inside the prison itself, providing a much better feed. Kefka was shown jumping up and down maniacally!)

KEFKA: Grr! Stupid, stupid race! How DARE they put me in a place like this! I don't believe this!

LEBLANC: Really, love? You couldn't see this one coming?

KEFKA: Oh, shut up! I HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE this race!

LEBLANC: Mmm-hmm, whatever you say, love. (mutes his audio feed) But now it's time to talk with some people who aren't jail. Let's start with General Leo. Leo, you and Kefka became the fourth team kicked off that race. So what went wrong?

LEO: Well, it wasn't how we started, to be sure. Actually, we were doing pretty well at the start of the leg and we managed to keep doing well. But then, Kefka went and blew it when we got to the Thunder Plains. Before I could even stop him, there he was using that sphere to transport to the Calm Lands before I could stop him. So what was I supposed to do? You're supposed to stay with your partner at all times, so there was nothing for me to do but transport too.

LEBLANC: Mm-hmm. I get that, I guess, but then once you were in the Calm Lands, why didn't you make him go back? It sounds like you're trying to lay all the blame on him.

LEO: Lay all the blame on him?! The guy is certifiable! I'd like to see you try telling something like that to him. Or don't you remember what happened back in Episode 2?

LEBLANC: Well, I really don't, actually, love. I think I was right in the middle of a particularly good massage and I missed that part. But why don't we hear what Kefka has to say about this? (She unmutes the television.)


LEBLANC: (mutes TV again) On second thought, maybe we don't need to him after all. Speaking of him, though, let's take some time to talk about why he's in an Al Bhed jail cell. Gippal?

GIPPAL: Oh yeah, that. There's been a lot of shady behavior, questionable moves and outright attacks on the series over the years, but I don't think anyone's ever tried to attack me before. But why don't we find out what Kefka thinks about that? (He uses his remote to unmute the TV.)


GIPPAL: Yeah, pretty much what I thought. Of course, that loser never stood a chance against me, even if it came to actual fight. But like I said on the show, there was no way I wasn't going to be prepared after some of the stuff that's gone on. I did admire Leo's bravery in trying to protect me, though.

LEO: Ah, shucks, think nothing of it.

LEBLANC: Okay, we won't then. Seriously, though, Gippal, in terms of crazy moments on the race, how does that rate?

GIPPAL: Pretty close to a ten. You'd better believe after that we're going to be seriously cracking down on the psych test. Oh yeah, Leblanc, you were in this episode also. How was that for you?

LEBLANC: Lots of fun, love. You should have me every season. I don�t think it�s ever been that great in a long time. Ormi and Logos, I�m talking to you. Leo, anything else you'd like to say?

LEO: Just that I don't ever care to experience anything like that penalty task again. You guys didn't see this on the show, but every time we made one of those matches, it would start singing - "Map, map, map, map, I'm the map!" or "Backpack, backpack, backpack..." I'm going to be having nightmares for quite a while.

LEBLANC: And so will I. Okay, that's all the time we have for now. Coming up next: an update on the rising tensions on the Highroad regarding the new machina-enhanced chocobos. Until then, this is Leblanc, wishing you eternal love!



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