THE ANIME-ZING RACE 3

* * * *

There is no way a ninja should be that cute!

* * * *

Time once again, for your fortnightly dose of mayhem that is the Anime-zing Race – and yeah, I insist on the word ‘mayhem’ because this leg is the most insane of the insane shows this time round. Not surprisingly, considering it’s created at the same time and the same studio as one Kodomo No Omocha…

Akazukin Chacha – aside from a Singapore release on Cartoon Network, it probably won’t see the light of day outside of Japan. Which is a damn shame, because…unlike some other morning anime shows (*coughsYUGIOHBEYBLADE*) it is genuinely a good show for children (shown at 9.30am in Japan) and not a designated money maker which lasted 74 (and 3 OVAs) episodes and was a good ratings winner.

So how did I come to know of this hugely underrated show? Well…as a Mr Joseph Klemm introduced me to the DDR Mix 2 along with a Mr Adam Pulver, I saw the overally wrong ‘Oh Nick Please Not So Quick’ AMV to this show – and it was obvious a piss take – a song about sex done to the Little Red Riding Hood cast – it was hilarious, but I inquired about the show a little, and learned it was on AnimeSuki…

74 eps in one go. Ouch.

Still, I continued, and got rewarded, with one of the funniest, yet sweetest anime shows I’ve ever seen. It even rivals the mighty CCS IMO as far as mahou shoujo goes – which is what this show really is – a magical girl show, albeit with a real fairy tale affect, plus an alchemist, werewolf, wizard, ninja and mermaid, not to mention all the other crazy characters (including a Mazinger Z rip-off, a Sushi Iron Chef specialist, a Hulk Hogan clone, a narcissistic vampire, etc.)…

And the puns, the parodies, the jokes, the piss-taking, it is such a wonderful little comedy that it’s a shame it will not see the light of day west side. Mainly because so many of the jokes would be hard to translate (in episode 1, Seravi asks Chacha to create some clouds (kudo) but creates some spiders (kudo in different kanji) for example), but if you have the patience to download 74 episodes (plus two cute OVAS), then give this show a chance.

And now, on with the leg!

(EDIT: As I wrote this, Akazukin Chacha has now been fansubbed by a new group, Infidels at an easier d/l (i.e – not all at once) at the first four episodes – so you got no excuses now! Go now!)

* * * *

(It’s morning – the sun is shining over the rocks of Moro’s cave – we see Ashitaka bringing in some rice, (he and San occassionally glancing a look at each other) some teams stretching out, some navigating the rocks down for a pool based shower…)

(…and Lillith forced to remain in her witches garb in unbearable weather as she is forced to introduce this next leg…)

Lillith: This is the pit stop…blah blah blah…can we please hurry it on, maybe the next leg will be cooler?

(San looks in anger at the disrespect of this leg, in front of her ‘mother’s’ home…Lillith gulps and reiterates her statement…)

Lillith: This is the pit stop…where our 5 remaining teams are nearing the end of a journey, a journey to be the ultimate team of race. But there are still…

(Lillith has to count on her fingers before working out how many legs are left…)

Lillith: …5 legs left to go, and they have plenty of work to do. So for now, they eat…

(Shot of a mixture of flavours as San shows where local tastes and how to make certain liquids. Despite her distrust for the human race, she seems at ease with Jungle natives Hale and Weda, as he and Riku begin doing some rice based stew.)

Lillith: …sleep…

(…the moon, the howls, the animal noises…the hard ground…it’s not easy for any of the teams. Whilst Shannon, Racquel, Mirielle, Kirika and Sasuke seem to tough it out, Hale, Weda, Riku and Naruto are a tad uncomfortable, whilst Risa is completely uncomfortable…it’s getting tougher for the teams…)

Lillith: …and mingle with the other teams.

(I say that, but of the 10 people there, only 2 can actually speak to each other in opposite numbers with some friendlyness, that being Riku and Hale. Everyone else is either indifferent to each other, (Mirielle/Kirika) or downright not liking each other (Team Scrapped and Team Ninja)

(5 teams…1 race…)

* * * *

Lillith: So, where was I? Oh yes…

11.48am

Lillith: Riku and Risa, they came here at 11.48pm…so they must go now!

Riku/Risa: (out of sight) Hey, no fair!!!

Lillith: (pouts) Oh, what you going to do to cute Lillith-chan, chiku-chi…ow! (looks up) Sis, that was mean!

(Eve looks down, like the bishoujo angel/devil/schoolgirl/etherial being she is…)

Lillith: Humph…anyway, Riku and Risa arrived at 11.48pm…so they must leave at 11.48am.

(Lillith raises her hat…)

Lillith: Let the Akazukin Chacha leg begin!

(Riku and Risa move as they get the route marker, directly ahead of them, all of them parched inside 5 hand crafted ceremonial daggers made from Ashitaka. Riku takes the clue as Risa wears it like a necklace.)

Riku: O.K…head back to the ceremonial pool and be bathed in the gods waters. There, you will await further instruction.

Risa: Huh?

* * * *

(Huh is right. We transport into a different world, as on Mochi-Mochi mountain, we have the most powerful wizard in the world. His name is Seravy, a man in his late twenties, always smiling. He’s tall, has a light blue robe on, long green hair…and a doll on his shoulder.)

Seravy: Teams must travel dimensions by the magic power of myself, the gods of that world and that hat haired trainee…

Lillith: (across dimensions) I’m not a trainee!

(Suddenly, the doll on Seravy’s shoulder…speaks…)

Elizabeth: Of course she isn’t, even trainees have some magic powers…

Seravy: Elizabeth, please…

(Folks, don’t worry, Elizabeth isn’t a talking doll. In fact, it’s just Seravy’s ventriloquist act. Apparently, everyone can see it (except Chacha) but he uses the act to make snide remarks that ‘Seravy’ would never say, normally to his rival Dorothy, but we’ll get to her in a minute…)

Seravy: …and receive their next clue from here, as soon as I get through repairs…Chacha needs to stop getting confuse with the world ‘bull’ with the word ‘ball…’

(One snap of the fingers and the worlds strongest magic user has his house fixed up again…one wonders what the Ranma dojo and the Sohma household would do for that ability…)

* * * *

Riku: So we have to climb down the mountain this time?

Risa: Better than climbing up…

Riku: We didn’t do that either remember?

Risa: Oh yeah…

Riku: Suck it up sister…princess…Risa…let’s just get down there…

Risa: (sarcastic) Checki…

Risa: O.K, so we still have our moments – but getting ahead now with just 5 teams is a real surprise considering the other teams involved. I never expected this, and I don’t think Riku does either. Now…we’re not going to be stopped, no matter what…

* * * *

Hale: …so we have to climb down there and get to that’s water again?

Weda: And then?

Hale: (shrugs) I guess we find out…

HALE/WEDA – 2ND PLACE

MOTHER AND SON: 11.52AM

(The two head down…)

Weda: We know we’ve got a strong advantage, so we have to take advantage of it. We know that the teams behind us have the physical edge, but we’ve done so well to get this far and we don’t want to ruin it…

(The mother and son combo begin to climb down the mountain, where they had to cross the Tatari Gami’s pond river before, and now, whilst they could have drowned before, they have to be bathed in that water…)

* * * *

12.20am

(It’s a lot quicker, climbing down than going up, and even the weakest member of the remaining 10 (Risa) doesn’t seem to have too much difficult climbing down. Heck, she doesn’t even complain about a few cuts on the hands…)

Riku: O.K, now what do we do?

(No giant deer god to instruct them or a handsome runaway prince…the Haradas look confused…)

Risa: I guess…what?

Riku: Do we have to wait or something?

Risa: Well…no use standing here…

(Risa gently steps one foot on top of the water…as soon as she does, it glows…but not like before…)

(…as this time, she’s PULLED into the water…)

Riku: RISA!!!!

(Concern overruns better judgement, and Riku dives in…the water drags the Haradas…)

* * * *

(…to another world. Nothing unusual to the Haradas…seriously.)

MOCHI-MOCHI MOUNTAIN: SERAVY’S HOME

(The Haradas are now outside a quaint little cottage home straight out of a fairy tale back. And both are drenched…)

Risa: What just happened?

Riku: I think a pair of witches have some explaining to do…

(Outside the house, sweeping away, is Seravy – the first host, best wizard of the world, and unknown ventriloquist…)

Seravy: Ah, who do we have here?

Elizabeth: Two young girls who are much prettier than Dorothy…

Seravy: Elizabeth, please…

Riku: Whilst flattery would get everywhere with Risa, we’re in a wet mood and not happy to be standing around…

Seravy: Ah ha, I guess you want one of these…

(Magically out of his hands comes an envelope. He hands it to Riku…)

Seravy: You don’t seem surprised that I was able to do that…

Risa: Sir, we’ve already had a few surprises and magical legs, never mind what’s happened to us…that’s not going to surprise us now, trust me.

Seravy: O.K…

Elizabeth: She’s as prissy as Dorothy…

Risa: Kill the puppet…

(Riku drags Risa out of there before she can really look like an idiot for attacking a stuffed doll as she looks at the clue…)

Riku: Head to Urara High School and get the two parts of the clue from Rascal-sensei and Barabaraman-sensei…

* * * *

(Cut to one Principal Urara, the principal of…er…Urara High School. She’s…distinctive. Mostly your generic anime old lady…except for three things. 1) She’s a complete airhead. 2) She has enormous blue eyes and 3…

Principal Urara: Ararararararara…

(…that catchphrase. Next time someone says ‘checkii’ is annoying I’ll refer them to this…anyway…)

Principal Urara: (in a sing song voice) Teams must come to the school…and find my two beloved teachers and get half a clue…then put them together and follow the path…

(She hops around along in tune to her singing, as we cut outside our door (yes, the eyes are even on the door…))

* * * *

Risa: So, we’re now playing fairy tale huh?

Riku: Let’s go find us some teachers…

(The two rush ahead up the path as they look for anyway to get there, the path leads straight and will lead in three directions…let’s see how they do…)

* * * *

12.24PM

(Past midday, and the jungle duo now come across the same problem…)

Hale: So…what do we do?

(There are no signs or anything…just…water…and colour.)

Weda: Well…let’s test it first…

(Weda gently dips her bare foot into the water, and a slight rainbow ripple flows through it. Weda jumps back, as Hale inspects it…the water glows strong.)

Hale: Well…you risked yourself last time…and it’s not the first time I’ve got into the water fully clothed and not been made to look an idiot…

Weda: Huh?

(Hale chooses not to answer that, as he steps into the water. Suddenly, it glows fully…and without warning…)

Hale: Nooo…

(The water drags Hale down…Weda, instinctive and surprisingly paternial mother, jumps in trying to save Hale…but the force drags her down as well…)

* * * *

MOCHI-MOCHI MOUNTAIN, SERAVY’S HOME

…(and out of Seravy’s fountain…J )

(Hale and Weda cough as the ‘drowning’ consists of 2 seconds, a bit of three-way magic from Eve/Tatari Gami/Seravy, and the angry faces of all that was involved…)

Hale: (coughing) What the heck just happened there?

(Seravy is busy brushing the front of his house, and notices the two drowned rats formerly known as Hale and Weda…)

Seravy: Ah, next victims.

(From his hand magically comes the next clue. He drops it in front of the two, and resumes sweeping…)

Hale: How did he do that?

Weda: You don’t seem shocked Hale…

Hale: Well…

(Again, Hale decides not to answer that question and instead takes the clue…)

Weda: So it’s back to school again Hale…

Hale: Yippee…

Weda: Let’s see which girl you fall for this time…

Hale: Mom…..

(After getting 10 bucks from Kitsune for Chacha and 5000 yen from Tamahome for Orin, we continue our story as the two look ahead, trying to find their way ahead…)

Hale: It’s a whole new world, a whole new life…and it can get frighteningly confusing. The good things are the fact that almost all the other teams will also find this problem…plus I’m getting so used to weirdness now it’s scary…

* * * *

12.25PM

NARUTO/SASUKE – 3RD PLACE

Naruto: Yosha, let’s go!

Sasuke: Down straight…shouldn’t be a problem.

(Ninja agility is going to be a real speed saver for Naruto and Sasuke, as they leap down the cliffs with ease…)

Naruto: Our strengths are starting to come into plan, the opening was good, and whilst we were a fair bit behind the first two, our strengths here are going to quickly cut that time…

(Naruto and Sasuke hurtle down the cliff as easy as you can believe as back in Mochi-Mochi…)

* * * *

(We see Riku and Risa turning around to see if Hale and Weda are behind them…)

Riku: Keep up sis!

Risa: I’m trying…I’m just nervous about seeing a mop of blue hair…

Riku: Wouldn’t be the first time considering the author…

(After Chris reprimands Riku, the two see the main castle ahead. They also notice a woodland path and an open path to the right. They (correctly) assume that the school is east, but they want to see if there is anything over there…)

(…that ends when they hear Weda in the background…)

Riku: Crap, let’s just go!

(The Haradas run…as we cut back to shots of Hale and Weda heading up into the main square if Pochi-Pochi, where a few roads lead into the mountains, a far off bridge with a castle, some woods, and to the east…)

Hale: It must be this way…I hope…

Weda: Why don’t we ask for help?

Hale: I’m afraid of that being in a fairy tale world…

?????: Seravy! I’ve got my new photo collection, here, you’ll like these more than my sisters!

(Y’know…I feel so wrong for this. Out of all the series in this race, the leg that has our yaoi innuendo other than anything involving Naruto/Sasuke of course, is the kids show. Figures…fortunately it’s for comic relief. Here we have Doris, the ‘brother’ of Dorothy who’ll we’ll meet later, but he’s a crossdresser…and he likes Seravy. Boys and girls, can you say ‘before there was Nuriko, there was…’)

Hale: What the…

Weda: Excuse me…

(Doris stops and turns…)

Doris: I’m busy! Go away!

(The millionaire crossdresser runs off as Hale and Weda are left in the dust…)

Hale: That was unexpected…

Weda: I know…so…we take the only road we don’t have a clue about?

Hale: Works for me…we’ve still got plenty of time…

(If only they knew…)

* * * *

12.30pm

(Naruto and Sasuke step towards the water, unsure what to do…)

Sasuke: It says wait for further instruction…we’re not going to be waiting again are we?

Naruto: Well, you know what they say? If in doubt…

(Suddenly, Naruto plunges into the pond. Sasuke is about to admonish him, but is nervous when Naruto doesn’t come up for air. Half expecting a load of Naruto clones to come out, his concern becomes greater…)

Sasuke: Crap…

(Sasuke dives in after his comrade…)

* * * *

Sasuke: …after this race, you are SO dead.

Naruto: Hey, I didn’t think that would happen!

Sasuke: Well…once again, water and us don’t mix…

Seravy: Ah, a couple of ninjas!

Elizabeth: Looks like a couple of drowned rats?!

Sasuke: And it seems Kakashi has resurfaced except with a stuffed doll instead of a hentai novel…

Elizabeth: My, how rude!

Seravy: Elizabeth, they are our guests…

Naruto: Wacko…

Seravy: (vein in head) You’re so lucky I’m not allowed to give you the Riiya treatment…

Sasuke: What’s that?

Elizabeth: You don’t want to know.

(Another magic, another clue, and the ninjas smile…)

Sasuke: We can’t be too far behind of the others…let’s go.

Naruto: Right!

(They begin to move, their speed not a huge advantage…as behind Seravy, we see the mangled body of an unconscious cross-dresser…)

* * * *

11.48am – MORO’S CAVE

(…time for two assassins to delve into insanity…)

MIRIELLE/KIRIKA – WORKING PARTNERS – 4th PLACE

Mirielle: Head back to the ceremonial pool and be bathed in the gods waters. There, you will await further instruction.

Kirika: So, we’re not going to drown are we?

Mirielle: As long as you can swim…

Kirika: Last time I checked…

Mirielle: Well, nothing will be won by waiting here, let’s go Kirika.

(The quieter of the two nods as they begin to descend down the mountain…)

Mirielle: We’ve come this far because we are the best that we do, and we continue to do so. It’s not hard to say that we won’t win this race, because throughout all adversity we’ve managed to come out on top. And we intend to keep that trend.

(Kirika descends ahead of the leggy blonde, as the assassins attempt to see if they can close the gap on the leaders…)

* * * *

(…because on foot, it takes a while to get to the school. Cut shots of the Haradas, Hale and Weda asking a few people (including a very bad pastry chef, a narcissistic vampire who fails to drink the blood and/or seduce Riku, Risa and Weda when they ALL call him ugly, an Astro boy like professor and the smallest ever fairy in the world who has a crush on the biggest kid in Chacha’s class (and I’m not making any of the characters you can see here up) – and a couple of brief stops for a water break (and Hale being sick after ‘trying’ a pastry) and…)

Riku: ..we have to carry on…I’ll feel sorry for Hale-kun, but we need to make sure that all our strengths are on…

Risa: Gomen!

(Behind, Hale and Weda are struggling…thanks to Hale’s sweet tooth…)

Hale: Thank the kamis…

Weda: Well…shall we go?

Hale: Yeah…hope it’s not too tiring…that damn cake…

* * * *

Riku: So…we have to find Rascal-sensei and Barabaraman-sensei…

Risa: So which classes are they?

Riku: Let’s find out!

(Risa knocks on the first door he sees, a class with an apple on it.)

Kid: Hello?

Risa: Excuse me, is Rascal-sensei or Barabaraman-sensei here?

(In front of a blackboard, a blond man in a white suit is teaching class. When he hears his name, he turns to Hale…)

Barabaraman-sensei: You want me?

Risa: Er…you are?

Kid: That’s Barabaraman-sensei!

Barabaraman-sensei: You want to speak to me…I’M…SO…HAPPY!

(ACC Sensei 101: If you thought Mika and Hibiki were strange, you haven’t seen nothing yet. Barabaraman has a sad ‘curse’ (which actually makes him one of the funniest characters on the show) wherenever he gets happy or excited…he sprouts…)

(…roses…and with them…)

Riku: Er…

(…thorns. Bararabaman has sprouted the first thorn and runs over…to hug Risa.)

Risa: EEEPPP!

Barabaraman: YOUNG LADY, NO-ONE ASKS FOR ME…YOU HAVE NO IDEA…

Riku: Run sis!

(The two run off, Barabaraman on their tail…)

Risa: Wait…he’s got the clue. Sis, go find the other teacher…I’ll catch up…

(Riku stops and turns…)

Riku: Risa…

Risa: JUST GO!!!

Riku: Right!

(Sisters with a little bit of teamwork (and surprising Risa bravery) as Riku begins searching for Rascal. She knocks on orange class…)

Shipone: …that baka’s down the hall – he stood me up again…when will he realise that I don’t want the kids with him…it’s just him and mee…

(The ninja teacher begins crying as Riku wonders if her love problems are tiny compared to everyone elses…)

(…meanwhile Risa stops as Barabaraman continues with the waterfall tears in happiness…)

Risa: Sensei, please stop, I need the GAACCKKK…

(Not quite the ‘gack’ but Risa is on the receiving end of a thorny hug. Risa squeals in pain, but a giant rose grows on Barabaraman’s head. It comes off, hits the ground, and the petals open to reveal half the clue. Risa grunts, and finally Barabaraman lets go…)

Barabaraman: (sad waterfall tears) I’m sorry…but when I heard people were going to be asking for my help I got so excited…

Risa: (coughing) Don’t…worry…about…it…if that’s how…I got the clue…

(Risa coughs as Hale and Weda move and see the younger Harada struggling with pains in her chest…and Weda notices the rose thorns…)

Weda: Oh crap…

(Barabaraman notices his next victims…)

Barabaraman: Are you here to see me too?

Weda: I think we’ve changed our minds…

Hale: We don’t have a choice, we’ve got to…

Barabaraman: THANK YOU KAMI-SAMA!

(He begins running….so do Hale and Weda…AWAY…)

* * * *

Hale: …we’ve got to stop!

Weda: …but…

Naruto: (distant) I know that we trained from school via the woods, but that’s not what most kids do you know?

Sasuke: Oh yeah, I guess that doll molesting magic weirdo was ‘normal’ then…

Naruto: Good point but…

Hale: CRAP!

(Hale stops and pushes his mom in the opposite direction…)

Weda: Find the other teacher now!

(Weda doesn’t argue, and she begins running…as Hale cringes as Barabaraman glomps him…and that cake begins to re-amerge…)

(…meanwhile…)

Riku: O.K, let’s see what surprise I’ve got in store…

(As soon as she opens the door…)

Rascal: Yeee-hah!!!! Get in seat you loveable little brats!

(The kids panic as Rascal-sensei snaps his trademark whip but he never hits them. He’s a violent sadistic teacher…who loves his students. Almost everything he does or says is oxymoronic, and as the teacher of 5 of the 6 main kids, he gets a lot of deserved attention. And like pretty much everyone else, is a riot…)

(…though Riku is currently sweatdropping at this sight.)

Riku: What the…

(Suddenly, Rascal’s scary slantly eyes silently follow the elder Harada…)

Riku: Crud.

(Rascal whips once, as Riku freezes up…)

Rascal: BRATS, OUR FIRST VISITOR IS HERE!

(The kids cheer, as Riku wonders who got the worst deal out of the two…)

Rascal: Come on in, we’ve got a prize for you, but only if you earn it!

Riku: O…K…

Rascal: Whenever someone joins our class, they must perform a trick or do something to impress me…Shiine-chan brought some flowers, Riyya-kun changes into a kawaii bow-bow, Chacha created a bull…

Riku: A bull?

Rascal: NEVER MIND! WHAT CAN YOU DO?!!!

(Riku looks around nervously, unsure what to do. Something to impress the teacher…)

(…a lightbulb goes in her head…)

Riku: Do you have cooking facilities?

* * * *

Kids: WHOOOOOAAAA…

(Ucchan move over, with great speed and intensity Riku cuts cabbage like Kiriyama goes through people in Battle Royale…a sizzle here and there, and voila, instant okonomiyaki…)

(…but does it get the taste test…)

Rascal: Let’s see…

(He takes a bite…and his face turns red…steam exits his eyes…Riku gulps.)

Rascal: RIKUUUUUUU…

Riku: Y-yes?

Rascal: Delicious.

(Mass facefault…)

Riku: Do I win?

Rascal: Yes, you talented little brat, here’s my half of the clue! Now scram!

(Riku scrams, just as Weda comes into the hallway…)

Riku: It’s scary in there…

Weda: How so…

(Weda pops her head in, as Rascal begins whipping okonomiyaki pieces around the class…Weda sweatdrops…)

Weda: Does Hale have to get through this…nah, the sensei is always asleep…though I wonder if that’s preferable to this…

(Suddenly, Rascal turns over and notices Weda, with evil slit eyes glancing at the young mother…)

Weda: Eep…

(Rascal snaps his whip once…)

Rascal: BRATS, WE HAVE ANOTHER GUEST HERE!

Kids: YAY!

Weda: Que?

Rascal: Now miss, we have a ritual here, that when someone enters our class, they must do something to impress the class! So please impress these lovable brats with a talent!

Weda: Is this what I have to do to get the clue? (shrugs) Oh well…

(As Weda thinks of something, Risa meets Riku outside the school…hurt. Not far behind her, we see Hale being sick a couple of times, whilst even less behind, Naruto and Sasuke dragging Barabaraman-sensei back to class…)

Hale: That wasn’t good…

Naruto: A bit of luck finding the teacher here!

Sasuke: Tell that the next time you get hugged by a giant rosebush…

Naruto: Sheesh…and he wonders why he gets the fangirls…

Riku: You O.K sis, Hale-kun?

Risa: I’ll let you know once my pulse catches up to me…

Hale: Please…no…more…

(Hale struggles on, a bit more as the ninjas continue with Bararabaraman into class, as Hale trails behind them. As they do, the sisters get their halves of the clues together and put them together to get the complete clue…)

Riku: Detour…Aqua or Alchemist.

* * * *

(Sorry, no Full Metal, just two female characters used as comic relief and sidekick material, but still very different. Our host is Chacha’s ‘evil’ counterpart (though she isn’t really evil) – Blackhood (or Kurozukin) Yakko – the 12 year old with an INSANE crush on Seravy, and for that reason (and Seravy made Chacha’s Akazukin(red hood)) hates her…though more of a rivalry, and she actually develops some morals (must be her friendship with Orin) as the series continues – Yakko is my favourite character and she introduces the detour.)

Yakko: Ah…Seravy-sama, watch me as I take over from you…

(Er…Yakko-chan…)

Yakko: HEY, DON’T INTERRUPT MY FANTASY!

(We cut to a blue screen so we don’t view anything…before Yakko finally resumes normality…well, as normal as she could possibly be…)

Yakko: This detour consists of Aqua or Alchemist. They both have their pros and cons, its up to the teams to decide which one to pick…

(Outside, in the school pool, we see a cute pink haired girl swimming around. Interestingly, she has a tail. Yakko scowls slightly as she continues.)

Yakko: Choose Aqua, and they get the displeasure of hanging round my ‘partner in crime’ or ‘tramp’ as I call her, Marine. She’s annoying as hell, but she’s a mermaid and can swim fast. Teams must catch her – simple, but exhausting…and considering how fast she is…but if they plan right, Marine isn’t that bright, they could be done in no time.

(We now see Yakko herself with a barrage of potions…)

Yakko: In Alchemist, they have to make one of my Yakko-brand special potions and test to see if it works. It’s easy to follow the recipe, but they must be precise. At least they won’t have to deal with Marine’s ramblings…

* * * *

Riku: Can you swim good enough for a mermaid?

Risa: I’m not Mio, but…

Riku: Let’s go…get those thorns dusted off…

Risa: But don’t you think the guys will be distracted by me in a swimsuit?

Riku: Do you REALLY want me to answer that with a straight face on?

(The Haradas begin to swim, whilst Weda begins to impress…)

* * * *

(Weda thinks what she can do to impress the brats…and smiles.)

Weda: Can I borrow that can I?

(Weda asks to lend Rascal’s whip. Rascal shrugs and does so…Weda takes 5 steps forward (so that the blackboard is behind her)…)

(…and in an insane speed reaction, she uses the whip to snap straight ahead, and snap the talking chalk (again, I’m serious) in half…now he has two half-brothers…)

Chalk: Since when did I do anything to do?

Chalk 2: Oh well, you’ve lost weight and gained a relative!

Chalk: Hmmm…

Rascal: Miss….

Weda: Yes?

Rascal: (crying happily) SPLENDID! YOU HAVE OVERTAKEN YOUR MASTER!

Weda: Since when…

Rascal: HERE IS YOUR REWARD!

(Rascal takes the whip again, snaps it in the corner of the classroom and takes an envelope with it. He hands it to Weda, who nods and leaves.)

Weda: That was easier than I ex…er…

Hale: I’m…back…

(Hale, covered still in some thorns, nearly collapses with his mother. However, both have the clues…)

Hale: Help…

Weda: Just rest for a moment…

(Weda helps her son down, as she puts the two clues together. Fusing together, we have a magic clue as we get the whole message…)

Weda: Should we rest?

Hale: Huh?

Weda: How good are you at alchemy?

Hale: Huh?

Weda: Never mind…I want to stay ahead, but if you exercise then it could worsen you…

Hale: It’s O.K mom…I don’t mind…but…

(Naruto and Sasuke look embarrassed…)

Naruto: Eh heh…we had to find you so we knew where to go next…

(Weda sweatdrops, grabs Hale’s hand and runs…)

Weda: We’ve still got a good advantage…come on, let’s calm you down…

Hale: O…K…

Weda: At that point, and I didn’t realise it, how much things have changed between us. We love each other, don’t get me wrong, but we seem to be on different sides of the pokute so to speak at times…now, we’ve been on such a good wavelength that I don’t want to ruin it. And Hale not being too good means that swimming isn’t high on the agenda. So let’s recover…and then refigure.

(Hale and Weda limp their way, looking for this Yakko girl…)

* * * *

12.55AM

SHANNON/RACQUEL – STEPSIBLINGS

Shannon: …head down…right, you ready?

Racquel: Sure…

(Shot of Shannon and Racquel ready to manoeuvre down the mountain…)

Shannon: This is the first time, we’ve dropped quite badly to be honest, and we didn’t expect to be. So now, we’ve got a few choices we have to make…and we’d better make the right ones if we’re going to survive…

(As they get started, two other teams start the detour, whilst one team is unsure how to impress Rascal...)

* * * *

Naruto: Are we allowed to use our skills in this leg?

Sasuke: Do we get a sign or something?

(NO response…giving up, the two decide to just do some super jumps…)

(…but not good enough.)

Naruto: HEY, YOU AREN’T IMPRESSED? DO YOUGUYS SEE ANYTHING THAT GOOD EVER?!

Dosu: Do-su.

Rascal: He means, ‘yeah. Orin-chan and Riiya-kun do that all the time.’

(Mass facefault from Naruto…and even Sasuke is twitching…)

Sasuke: Then…

(Sasuke grabs a stick. He breaks a large metre ruler and breaks it many times. Then, he throws the pieces in unison at the blackboard (shaped like kunai) around the poor hapless talking chalks…)

Naruto: Darts master Sasuke…

Rascal: EXCELLENTE!

Sasuke: Thank you…

Naruto: What the…

(The ninjas get the clue, and quickly put the pieces together. Deciding isn’t too difficult either..)

Naruto: I thought you said we hated water?

Sasuke: I lie…

Naruto: You just want to win now?

(Sasuke doesn’t say anything…but at the pool…)

* * * *

12.55pm

Marine: You think you two bozos can beat me? And you better now think of stealing my Riiya-kun…where is he anyway? Why isn’t with me for this leg?

(A doggy/wolf sneezes somewhere…)

Risa: O.K, so what do we do…

Riku: I think this is going to be so easy…

Marine: Ha, like you can catch the magnificent Marine!

(Marine uses her magic wand…)

Marine: Marin-maririn-rin! Emerge, rapids!

(Suddenly the water begins to get a little rough…of course, Marine also gets tossed around…as the Haradas sweatdrop…guess it worked a little too well, really Marine’s greatest spell is creating a giant seashell…to hide in and let Chacha-tachi do all the hard work…)

Marine: THAT WASN’T SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN!!!

Riku: Right, we’re coming in!

(Riku dives in – Risa just jumps in. Marine notices Riku, a strong swimmer, heading towards her. Of course, Marine easily escapes her, but Riku surfaces and smiles…)

Riku: Aw…where’s that Riiya, I wanna cuddle him sooooo much…

(Marine pops up, hearing her love’s name in a very similar way that Li would do so with Yukito 5 years later…)

Marine: YOU…LEAVE RIIYA-KUN ALONE, HE’S MI…

Risa: Tag.

(Marine turns around where Risa has snuck up behind and grabbed the mermaid. Marine looks embarrassed, Riku smirks.)

Riku: Victory!

Riku: Sometimes it’s not the fastest or the strongest that wins, it’s the smartest…Marine made a mistake and we took advantage of it…

(The Haradas leave as Marine seethes…Risa has the clue from her as they look see…)

Risa: That was cool sis…

Riku: Eh heh.

(Risa smiles as she looks at the (waterproof) clue…)

Risa: Head to Dorothy’s Castle.

Riku: That’s it?

Risa: Must be that castle path, we saw earlier…let’s go!

* * * *

(We cut to rival/romance interest/completely evil witch and slavedriver of poor Shine-chan…otherwise known as Dorothy-chan. She’s is always looking to take over Seravy as the most powerful magician in the world but Seravy seems to always one-up her. There is more to this than meets the eye, but if you want to know, download the last two episodes…actually, just download everything. Yes, I’m a shameless plugger, so sue me…)

Dorothy: Teams must come to my castle, located on Urizuri Mountain where the REAL greatest magic user in the land gets to show why she is the best…AND THAT DAMN SERAVY ISN’T!

(Dorothy-chan calms down. The pink haired woman (who used to be blond: believe it or not, that is an actual plot point in the relationship calendar…) looks behind her as some noise is going on…)

Dorothy: Oh. Please hurry up…I don’t want Shine-chan taking too long on the Road Block…I’m hungry!!!

(Yes…and keep in mind Shine actually likes doing this…poor boy…)

* * * *

1.00pm

(And at the other detour…)

Yakko: Ah, so you guys are first?

Weda: Yes…so what do we do?

Yakko: Just read, and mix. Simple as that.

Hale: Nothing is that simple…

(Well, it is. Whilst Yakko has a reputation that her potions don’t do exactly what they say on the tin, at least she’s consistent. Hale seems to calm down, despite the powered eye of newt and blood of 4Kids executives amongst the ingredients…^_^)

Hale: Let’s see…chobobo’s feather…

Weda: …voice of Mokona…

(Pupo!)

Hale: …hair of a Cosmo Beauty…

Weda: …an alive pigtail? Where’d that come from?

Yakko: I stole it from someone’s dream…

Weda: Wow…

(After the ‘unusual’ array of ingredients have been measured and carefully added, they have to process everything. Yakko is a stern judge, but the mom and son are on a good wavelength, and aren’t too slow. It takes around 10 minutes for the two to complete the task, but Hale is feeling pretty good as Yakko unearthes her newest creation…)

Yakko: The Yakko-brand bazooka beam blaster potion, and now to test it!!!

(She throws the potion at a nearby rock…and it explodes!)

Yakko: Success!

(And the lasers rebound blasting her. Cue the charcoal effect as Yakko pouts…)

Yakko: DAMN YOU!!!

Hale: Um…

Yakko: Not your fault…happens all the time…and I can’t figure out why…anyway…

(Yakko gives the duo their clue, as they look through it, already half way through without another team even starting…)

 

* * * *

(…and now comes one of the most unique problems of this leg…)

Hale: We’ve got to walk back?

Weda: How long did it take to get here?

(Yep, no taxis…or as far as they know, transport. Of course, if they use a little ingenuity, they could find a few options but no luck…)

Hale: So… Do you see a phone or any forms of civilization similar to something which doesn’t include our jungle?

(Dramatic pause…)

Weda: Hmmm….Pokute tribe?

Hale: NOT THE TIME FOR JOKES!!!!

Weda: Suggestions?

(Hale sighs as he may have recovered from the rose thorn attack, but neither he or his mother are indeed looking forward to a bit of good walking…not to mention how far they have to go to the castle…)

(…but with that, we can cut back to our favourite twins…)

* * * *

 

* * * *

1.13pm

(…who are beginning to hate this leg at the moment…)

Riku: (just behind the path leading to Dorothy’s castle) This sucks…

Risa: And we’ve got to go there?

(It’s about another couple of miles ahead…if they ran it, maybe take 20 minutes…but it’s not like they have much energy…)

Riku: …this is exhausting…

Risa: Can we find anywhere to go other than foot?

Riku: This leg is exhausting. It’s not difficult in the sense of going from point A to point B, but in the fact this was the first real leg where we had to do everything ourselves. No help from planes, taxis, bikes, trains or elks. It was us, us, and more us…and I never realised how tiring it could be…

* * * *

1.15pm

(…not far behind are two ninjas as we quickly flashback to where they took on Marine in the Aqua detour…)

(Naruto isn’t quite as intelligent as Riku, and despite Sasuke’s smarts, it’s obvious the two want to use their physical strengths to stop the slippery mermaid. Marine’s natural feel of ‘icky boys not named Riiya’ actually helps them but even so, her speed is very impressive to the boys. However, Sasuke manages to criss-cross her enough times for Naruto to get the hint, and he finally snags the clue…)

Naruto: Why am I always the one that gets slapped?

Sasuke: She maybe be a mermaid but she’s a girl…YOU DON’T GRAB THERE…

Naruto: Hmph…tell that to ero-sennin…(he feels the slap from the mermaid before sulking away with the clue…)

Naruto: Why does he always get the luck with the girls…and HE NEVER APPRECIATES IT!!! KUUUUUSSSSSSOOOOOOO!!!

* * * *

1.18pm

 

 

 

 

 

 

MOCHI-MOCHI MOUNTAIN

Mirielle: Well, that was refreshing…

Kirika: Are you O.K?

Mirielle: Yeah…just never make sure we do any more underwater missions…

(Seravy pops out of nowhere a la Xelloss (though unlike Xelloss, he usually does it with the aid of Dorothy and Elizabeth, all dresses as three passing by something-or-others of the week) and looks down at the great Noir, all wet and bedraggled…) as he reads a book whilst Elizabeth ‘narrates..’)

Elizabeth: And that’s why Dorothy is uglier with pink hair…

Seravy: Elizabeth, please don’t depress me…(notices the girls)…oh, speaking of blonde hair…)

Mirielle: I’m officially freaked out…

Seravy: Now, now, don’t worry…we just here to meet and greet…

(The envelope pops up as Kirika grabs it, as Mirielle struggles up, and drenches the water from her miniskirt. Kirika reads the clue…)

Kirika: Back to school again Mirielle…

Mirielle: What now?

Kirika: We find some teachers?

Mirielle: How tall and how crossdressing?

Kirika: I guess we’ll find out when we meet them…

* * * *

(The two girls head down as above them, a magic carpet flies overhead…they move on ahead, but as they come to the cross path…)

Mirielle: Where to go?

(Again, it’s over the woods, to the castle or to the right – the right is right, but there is another option if they take the woods…problem is, it’s not glaringly obvious…)

(…and Mirielle and Kirika sigh realising that the best option must be the right…)

Mirielle: It must be that way…well, we can always trail back if necessary…

* * * *

1.33pm

Shannon: …so this is it?

(The mage and swordsman have now arrived at the waters edge as the other teams are sampling the delights of Pochi-Pochi. Shannon and Racquel however seem to sense the energies from the water, and step into it immediately…)

* * * *

Seravy: …ah, so these are the last two?

Shannon: I know am being to see the appeal to this type of clothing…would have weighed us down…

Racquel: It’s great how you’re so practical about things…

(She turns to Seravy…)

Seravy: Hey, you seem…strong…maybe you’d give me a match for greatest wizard in the country?

Racquel: Oh silly, I won’t be here too long…

Seravy: Shame…

(Shannon reads the clue…)

Shannon: O.K, so we have to go to a school…with magic…do you sense a recurring theme with these legs?

Racquel: Not really…

Shannon: Of course you wouldn’t…let’s go…

(Shannon and Racquel begin heading off as Seravy waves them on…)

Elizabeth: You glad she’s gone?

Seravy: Yeah…she’d probably beat me…what kind of people in these other worlds exist?

* * * *

1.38PM

(…and speed is quickly being utilised…)

Weda: DAMMIT!

(Naruto and Sasuke get ahead of Hale and Weda…the young son struggling as he is getting hurt…the ninjas getting a second wind so to speak, and with Riku and Risa not too far ahead…)

Naruto: Now we’re cooking with ramen!

Sasuke: Let’s keep it coming…we’ve only got those girls to beat, so let’s rush…

(Naruto and Sasuke continue on, as Hale and Weda struggle to keep up…)

* * * *

1.44pm

Mirielle: …so which way do we go?

Kirika: Can’t be straight…

Riku: …you O.K sis?

(The assassins see the Haradas coming to the mountain…)

Riku: …oh crap….

Mirielle: So it’s that way!

Risa: …what can…be…worse…

Naruto: THERE THEY ARE!

(The ninjas are in eye shot as the assassins are now nervous…)

Mirielle: What can be worse?

Shannon: (distant) They’re just ahead…

Mirielle: Dammit…they’re fast…

Kirika: Let’s go!

(Kirika grabs her hand as Mirielle picks up the step, but they pass the ninjas as the Haradas now have to head over to the castle…)

Risa: The fact that we couldn’t use transportation really is destroying all the teams…except for Naruto and Sasuke. At this late stage, their advantages are coming into play, and despite any boneheaded mistakes they made, they are going strong and have survived…and now they are starting to pull ahead…

(The Haradas know they are going to get passed, and Risa is near exhaustion. However Riku holds her sister hand, and they drag themselves towards the bridge of the castle…)

* * * *

Risa: …it’s long.

Riku: How long will it take for us to get there?

Naruto: LONGER THAN US!!!

(Naruto and Sasuke are just behind them, and not too surprising now take the lead. This isn’t quite the Great Naruto Bridge, but the two are nonetheless impressed…actually, more like reinvigerated…)

Sasuke: The moment we got ahead of the Haradas, we knew that we’ve got the leg in the bag. We’re into our stride now, and when even Naruto can think, it means we can’t be beat.

(Naruto and Sasuke jog quickly across the bridge, something that a normal person 20 minutes to walk…)

* * * *

1.52pm

(…takes them barely 8.)

NARUTO AND SASUKE – DOROTHY’S CASE

(1ST PLACE)

Sasuke: They are getting tired…we can extend this lead easily…

Naruto: Yeah, but now we have to get the clue from this old bag?

Dorothy: (uber-pissed) WHO YOU CALLING AN OLD BAG?

Naruto: Eep…

Dorothy: YOU THINK THE GREAT DOROTHY-SAMA SHOULD EVEN BREATHE THE AIR OF YOU LITTLE BRATS?!!!

Sasuke: Do you ever learn?

(Apparently not…)

Sasuke: I think if you take another step closer, then you’re dust. Excuse me…

(Sasuke pulls ahead as an envelope in front of the castle door…)

Sasuke: Road Block. This person must be versed in might and magic.

* * * *

(Don’t worry, it’s not a Yu-Gi-Oh style card game we’re playing…to introduce this leg, at the back of the castle, we see Dorothy’s young warlock, Shine (pronounced She-né)…or as he prefers to be called Shine-chan. He’s wearing a blue robe without the hood and has his broomstick out. He’s also the ever suffering hard worker who does almost all of Dorothy’s chores (she actually doesn’t mind, he sometimes gets withdrawl symptoms, seriously!) and has a HUGE crush on the heroine, Chacha…actually, he can get a little perverted for a 12 year old…)

Shine-chan: The Road Block is a test in two tests…the person taking the leg will be impressed by my magic as much as anyone…especially Chacha-san…

(Cue lovestuck mood)

Shine-chan: Ah, Chacha-san…where you are, as long as you aren’t with that mutt then…

????: Shine-chan?

(Shine snaps out of his stupor…)

Shine: Ah gomen Orin-chan! (looks around) Hey, where are you…you have to introduce this leg as well…

Orin: (hidden) I’m…not too good in front of people…I can never do the sentai lines with Marine-san and Yakko-san…

Shine: Aw, don’t be shy! Come on!

(From the sky (actually a painting in the sky, how that got there no-one knows) two pair of eyes emerge, and then turns into a small young lady with dark blonde hair, a pink ninja outfit (think Shinobuden but smaller) and the most innocent looking face in the history of anime. Meet Orin-chan, the powerful little ninja with a cute little crush on Shine, but prefers the attention of the main female character, even if she never acknowledges him the way he does his rival…hmm…where have I heard this before?)

(Actually, it’s a little different because Shine and Orin are good friends, and unlike the other two crushes in the show, this one has a chance. Still, Orin is very embarrassed to be around Shine-chan, but she tries to put her part in….)

Orin: The member must…d-do a ninja skill in the way I do to pass might….

(Orin displays 5 of her techniques, Smoke Screen, Ninja of the Leaf (a teleport technique), 5 Star Slash, Flying Squirrel Whirlwind and Giant Toad Summon.)

(Hmm, where have I heard this before…)

Shine-chan: …after they pass, they will then need to create a magic bullet that I will demonstrate…

(Shine does, as the bullet evaporates into the sky in an array of fireworks…)

Shine: …after they complete both tasks, they can move on.

* * * *

Naruto: Might and magic?

Sasuke: It’s something that we should be good at…I think…

Naruto: So who?

Sasuke: I’ll go. I want to see if you can survive being anywhere near her…

(Naruto turns and sees Dorothy looking ready to turn Naruto to ramen…O.K, so she can’t cook, but still…)

Sasuke: See ya dunce.

Naruto: BAKA!!!

(Sasuke begins running as the ninjas run around…)

Sasuke: Huh?

Naruto: What is it?

Sasuke: I feel a ninja’s presence…a strong one…

Naruto: You serious?

Sasuke: I’m always ser…

(Sasuke stops. In front of them is a little girl in ninja garb, her sword out. Sasuke almost sweatdrops…)

Sasuke: That’s the presen…

Orin: ORIN-CHAN NO BUPPO!

(Suddnely, she slams the ground (without the aid of blood…ha!) and a massive toad comes out. Naruto and Sasuke’s mouths hang open…)

Naruto: ERO-SENNIN’S TECHNIQUE?!

Sasuke: No, it’s different…

(Orin sees the two young men, as the toad disappears, Orin somersaults from the toad. She looks a little nervous…)

Shine-chan: It’s O.K Orin-chan, they’re the first here!

Sasuke: Um…what do we do?

Orin: Ummm…you have to do a ninja technique…

Sasuke: Seriously?

Naruto: Do we have to do ones you have to do?

Orin: Y-yes, in fact a lady in a hat told me to say this…

(Orin reads from a script…)

Orin: ‘If…those…two baka ninjas use any of their…own…techniques…they cannot move on. If that mage girl uses her own techniques, they cannot move on. If…’

Naruto: I get it…

Sasuke: Fine. O.K, what’s your name?

Orin: O-Orin.

Sasuke: What can you do…show me another one of your skills.

Orin: H-hai!

(Orin does a couple of hand movements, and her hands glows as she does use some magic.)

Orin: FLYING SQUIRREL BLITZREIG!

(A duplication technique, but instead of the clones standard around, they fly around, slashing at INTENSE speed. Sasuke gulps…)

Sasuke: She’s faster than Lee…I thought all female ninjas sucked…apart from Tsunade-sama and maybe Temari…

Naruto: HEY, WHAT ABOUT SAKURA-CHAN?!!

(Sasuke doesn’t anything for a moment…)

Sasuke: Orin-san, do you want to be in our team back in Konoha? We have someone you can replace easily and…

Naruto: I’M GONNA SO TELL HER THAT!!!!

(Orin blushes as Sasuke smiles a genuine smile. Sasuke of course does the first part of the leg with ease, by watching Orin’s sword play technique, he’s able to replacate his speed into a 5 star based slash.)

Orin: Done!

Sasuke: Thank you.

Sasuke: She’s…very good. Her strength at a similar age to mine would probably be similar to when we first faced Haku. I’ve always said I wanted to fight strong opponents…Gaara…Neji…Naruto…and I guess I’ve found another one…when this leg is over perhaps…

(As Naruto plots revenge by badmouthing Sasuke to Sakura (which she won’t believe of course), Sasuke now has a harder task by learning magic from Shine-chan…)

Shine-chan: …so you have to concentrate the energies of your own body combined with the magical energies around here.

Sasuke: This world has it?

Shine-chan: Oh yes, in the air, water, trees everywhere. Just connect it with your body and you’ll be fine…

(Shine gives a full more minute instructions as Sasuke holds his hand out almost like he’s going for his Chidori technique…)

Shine: And go!

(Sasuke gets a bit of energy into his palm, but he has to fire it like a gun. As he tries, the energy disapates, and Sasuke is back to square one…)

Sasuke: Harder than it looks…

(Sasuke struggles for a few more minutes, but learning his lessons from the Read or Die leg, he manages to create some mana energy and fire a magic bullet into the sky. Shine gives him the O.K as he smiles.)

Sasuke: That’s good…Naruto?

(No Naruto…Sasuke looks confused…)

Naruto: …so Orin-chan, did you learn this from using scrolls as well?

Orin: No…my grandpa taught me!

Naruto: Cool…so a perverted ero-sennin didn’t teach you a giant frog summon?

Orin: No, my grandpa is very nice…just has a bad back…

Sasuke: NARUTO!

Naruto: Huh…aw crap! Nice talking to ya Orin-chan!

(Orin waves bye-bye to her new ninja friends, as Shine hands them the clue…)

Sasuke: Well done for completing the road block – advance to the end of this fairy tale by heading to Princess Joan’s castle.

Naruto: Joan’s castle?

Shine: That’s Chacha-san!

(Orin looks a little disappointed…Orin and Chacha are good friends…but there’s a little jealously there…but at least she doesn’t try to throttle her like two other great stooges…)

Sasuke: Chacha-san?

* * * *

(Cue Chacha-san! At the huge white castle of the Royal Family, formerly a dreary castle, now a bustling one with Chacha’s true parents (though Chacha doesn’t live there because she hates being away from her friends…and it’s a stuffy lifestyle…^_^) living there, we see the heroine, Akazukin (or red-hooded) Chacha. Straight out of a fairy tale, she’s short, cute and damn right hilarious. She makes Excel’s pun jokes look like something out of a cheap joke book as Chacha-chan (San-san last ep and now Chacha-chan this ep? Geez…) introduces the finale.)

Chacha: Teams must get to the Pit Stop to finish the leg!

(Suddenly magic sparks come out as Riiya (in wolf form) appears chewing on a pork leg bone…)

Riiya: Mmmmphh…hey Chacha? This meat is good…

Chacha: RIIYA, YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE AT THE FAST FORWARD IN CASE ANYONE TAKES IT! AW NO…WHAT DO I…

(Back at his home, Seravy snaps his fingers, and wolf-boy goes bye-bye…)

Chacha: Um…anyway…they get to the Road Block, they win, they sing songs and live happily ever after! To celebrate, come on out…flowers!

(A huge lot of flour bombs surrounding the little princess, as her eyes bug out and she tonzuras…anyway…)

* * * *

Naruto: We have to run…

Sasuke: Where?

Naruto: Let’s ask love-struck…

Sasuke: Which one?

(Shine is in fantasy land, as Orin is blushing like mad…)

Naruto: That wasn’t nice…

(Sasuke sighs…)

Sasuke: Yeah, sorry.

(Naruto is surprised…)

Naruto: Yeah…O.K…

Sasuke: Let’s climb up. If it’s a bigger castle than here, we should spot it…

Naruto: Good call, let’s go!

(The male ninjas jump up on the windowsills, and jump to the roof. Sasuke looks around…)

Sasuke: Naruto!

(Sasuke points over where a huge white castle straight out of Disneyland stands out like a sore thumb…)

Naruto: Over and out Sasuke!

(They begin to run, seemingly not tired…)

* * * *

2.18PM

(We can see clearly that Shannon and Racquel have got ahead of Mirielle and Kirika now, as they arrive at the school, knowing the assassins are on their trail…)

Shannon: Right…we’ll decide what we need to do after this right?

Racquel: O.K!

(The teachers are now back in their respective classes, as they split up to search quicker. Shannon is the first to arrive…)

(…at Barabaraman’s class…)

Shannon: Uh…

Barabaraman: ARE YOU HERE TO SEE ME?

Shannon: I think I’ve realised why schools aren’t exactly a protocol home…

Barabaraman: YATTA!

(I wonder if even Barabaraman would think twice about this, but Shannon remaining stern…)

Shannon: I’m used to worse…

(Barabaraman gets within a foot of Shannon, but notices his ‘victim’ this time isn’t quite on the same height as Hale, Risa and the ninjas. He stops…)

Barabaraman: Um…

(The rose on his head, forms, wilts…but the clue still appears…or half of it….)

(Shannon nods almost like he’s saying ‘smart move’ as Barabaraman’s tears begin to wilt as Racquel takes a bit longer into finding Rascal’s class…)

* * * *

2.20PM

MIRIELLE/KIRIKA – URARA SCHOOL

Mirielle: Let’s hurry – we’re last now, so we need to catch up – the fact that they’ve got the fast forward worries me though…we could be in real trouble…

Kirika: Then let’s go and find these teachers and prepare for the worst…

Mirielle: O.K…

(Mirielle and Kirika run, also splitting up as Racquel now has the ‘pleasure’ of meeting Rascal…)

* * * *

Rascal: RACQUEL…..

Racquel: Hai?

(Suddenly Rascal presents some flowers to Racquel…)

Racquel: BEAUTIFUL MON CHERIE…

(Looks like what Racquel has decided to do to impress the kids and the teacher is to go all Soopy-kun routine…and dress in that maid like outfit…and after the whole ad routine…)

Kids: NE-CHAN IS COOL!

Racquel: My my, did I pass?

(Rascal hands over the clue (and probably about to get the beating of his life from Shipone) as she escapes, (the dress was over her normal clothes and created by some of the kids on request) as Shannon is nowhere to be seen…)

(Racquel looks confused…until she sees Kirika…eye to eye…)

Racquel: Er…hi?

(Kirika nods and calmly steps into Rascal’s room…Racquel runs like hell as Shannon awaits outside…)

Shannon: The assassins are here…

Racquel: I know, Kirika-chan saw where I exited…

Shannon: Never mind…we can take the fast forward now…

Racquel: Right…

Shannon: …but…

Racquel: Hmm?

Shannon: …I’d rather not.

Racquel: Why?

Shannon: Two reasons. One: If those punk ninjas took it, then we’re screwed. And two: we’re ahead now and we are faster than those two. If we can save it for the next leg…

Racquel: What if the ninjas still have it?

Shannon: Then we’ll just enjoy some real revenge.

Racquel: Ahhh…

Shannon: Now then, let’s see what you got?

(They form the clue…and get the detour: Aqua or Alchemist.)

Shannon: Aqua is faster, but considering that we seem to be more used to magic, let’s do Alchemist.

Racquel: Wouldn’t that slow us down?

Shannon: Not necessarily, we don’t know what Aqua is about, and this is something we can do easily…so…

(Racquel follows that logic, as Kirika begins impressing the kids…)

* * * *

(The kids and Rascal are in awe as Kirika does a gymnastic display worthy of Kaleido Stage, using almost anything in the room like a weapon, pencils, paper, sticks, the poor chalk, anything…she manages to make cuts within windows, table, the blackboard, even Rascal’s whip isn’t safe…)

Rascal: Amazing…

Kirika: That good?

Rascal: Oh yeah, that good…here…

(Rascal actually seemed genuinely impressed with that, as Kirika steps out…)

(…no Mirielle…)

Kirika: Mirielle?

(…she steps forward…and notice a classroom open. She peers her head…)

(…and smiles slightly.)

Mirielle: As long as he didn’t touch me, he’s safe.

(Looks like Barabaraman ‘got it’ before he could be the latest mark on the wall for the Causcian half of Noir. Mirielle calmly leaves after the kids seem to be scared as well, getting the clue successfully.)

Kirika: Now?

Mirielle: We put the two pieces together…like us I guess…

Kirika: …except the clues don’t govern death.

Mirielle: Good point.

(They put them together, and without hesitating, DO take Aqua…not paying much attention to it, just picking the faster option….)

* * * *

2.14pm

(…at Dorothy’s castle…)

Risa: I’m…NEVER…walking…again…

Riku: Just suck it up, you could have done with the exercise…you can barely do 400 metres without gasping for air…you did well…

Risa: Please let me die…

Dorothy: Aw, you can’t die here…not playable!

Riku: Please…

Dorothy: Anyway, go around the back…if you’re tired, you’re tired. But you’ve gotta do something now…

(Both Haradas sigh as they pick off the clue…and sigh again.)

Riku: This person must be familiar with might and magic…

Risa: What?

Riku: So…who does it?

Risa: Well…erm…

Riku: Why don’t you do it Risa?

Risa: Huh, but I’m tired!!!

Riku: So am I, and I’ve done most of these detours…plus…you have the one advantage…

Risa: What’s that?

Riku: Your tarot cards.

(Risa facefaults…)

Risa: THAT’S YOUR REASONING?!!

Riku: Worked for that Chikage girl…now suck it up and start moving!

Risa: You oni!!!

* * * *

Risa: AWW, YOU’RE SO CUTE!!!!

(Riku sighs as Orin is massively embarrassed as Risa has a similar reaction to Kisa back in the Furuba leg.)

Riku: Talk about your rejuvenation potions…

Orin: Risa-san, you must perform a ninja technique performed by myself, I will aid you as the mana energies of this world will give you better chance…

Risa: Ninja? Well…I’ve done some phantom thief training…can’t be that much different…

(Orin goes through the motions, as obviously it’s going to be a lot more difficult for Risa than it would for Sasuke…)

Orin: Use the aura around your body and connect it, follow up with the signals and you can do it…

Risa: Right!

(We’ll let Risa concentrate for a while (first time for everything) as we head back to the pool and potions…)

* * * *

Mirielle: I’ll go in a sec, you should be able to catch her yourself if necessary.

Kirika: Understood.

(Kirika dives in, Mirielle follows up and being used to working in all conditions, is a good swimmer despite the hindrance. The main problem though is Marine. Marine is too fast even for Kirika, and the reason why both should be there is simple. They shouldn’t be chasing her together, they should be working as a team to block her off. Teamwork is Noir’s forte but in this stage of the game, it seems panic is hitting…)

Mirielle: Damn…

* * * *

Yakko: …Wow, you seem to be good at this…maybe it will work this time!

Shannon: Maybe? That doesn’t fill me with confidence…

Yakko: I know…it’s only my 518th attempt to make a love potion worked specifically for (psycho voice) DESTROYING CHACHA (sweet voice) and making Seravy-sama be mine for ever…

Shannon: Right…

Racquel: O.K, I think that’s it…

Yakko: Let’s see…Dark feather, octopus ball, script for future murder fanfic, elements of mars bowl soup, part of pactio card, bits of lipstick ribbon, German waffo…er waffle…and we’re done!

(Yakko mixes it and after a little magic, we have one…er…potion…)

Yakko: And I’ll need a willing volunteer won’t I? Eh…where’d they go?

Racquel: (calling) Thanks for the clue!

Yakko: Eh? HEY WAIT…ah well, I’ll get Marine to do it…I’ve learned first hand to never use it on yourself now…and always get a ‘willing’ volunteer…willing meaning ‘force fed down their throat with promises which won’t be intended to keep…’

(Yakko begins ranting as around the same time…)

* * * *

Mirielle: Got her!

(The two finally lock a cross tactic, they manage to block her out by Mirielle staying underwater as Marine swims by, forcing her to swim back. After 3 attempts, Kirika finally grabs her. After getting the clue (and some complaining and sneezing from Marine, someone must be talking about her), they struggle out of the pool, needing to change and to catch up…)

* * * *

2.24pm

(Risa has managed to create a smoke effect (the easiest of the jutsus – it’s just an enhanced smoke bomb) which is enough to pass Orin’s criticism as she moves onto Shine…)

Shine: O.K, you must learn to control the mana energy and use it form a magical bullet…

(Shine creates a small blue energy ball onto his fingers and fires it into the sky.)

Risa: Cool…but Dark is way cooler…

Riku: Risa…

Risa: Relax big sis! Leave it to me…

(Risa is seemingly intact with this – much better than with the ninja skill, as she concentrates…)

Risa: Aim a bullet for my beloved…KYAH!

(Amazingly, Risa manages to do it on her first go, impressing Shine…)

Shine: Well done Risa-san, here’s your reward!

(Shine hands over the clue to Risa, who waves it in the direction of Riku, as she gets up…)

Riku: O.K, so now what?

(Risa looks at the clue…and her face faults…)

Riku: Well?

Risa: (anime tears) MORE WALKING…

Riku: Where to?

Risa: Big…castle…

(Riku looks around…and gulps…)

Riku: Shine-chan, I don’t suppose there is any other castles closer than this of a similar size…

Shine-chan: (shakes his head) I’m afraid not.

Riku: Crap…oh well, you can never have enough exercise…come on Risa!

Risa: (sadly) Hai…

(A depressed Risa joins her older sister as one team is almost there, and two other teams are competing to just get to this point without coming in last place…)

* * * *

Naruto: We’ve done well now, we can win this…

Sasuke: We’ve still got the fast forward as well, we can save it and use it the next leg and make our lead unbeatable, or save it for the leg after, where we’ll be down to three teams…that we, we’ll be in the final two.

Naruto: Yosha…onward and upward!

(The two head off to the castle…)

Sasuke: We bicker…we’re rivals…we understand that, but when we work together, and on the same page, we are difficult to beat. And we were on a leg which played to our strengths. Nearing the end of the race with so few teams left, this really was a big plus in our favour, and we’re making sure we are keeping that up now.

* * * *

Racquel: Ah…

Shannon: That was unexpected…

(Mirielle and Kirika are literally a breath behind the mage and swordsman. Kirika and Shannon are the faster, but Racquel is edging out Mirielle…not to mention getting to Dorothy’s castle…with Shannon and Racquel NOT taking the fast forward, was that a mistake?)

* * * *

2.26pm

(Hale sees Riku and Risa in the distance now walking to the castle, neither of them bothering to run…)

Hale: Mom, the Haradas must have finished this part…

Dorothy: Hello there!

Hale: Hey th…

Dorothy: CAN YOU COOK, DO MY DISHES, PAINT MY WALLS?

Weda: He sure can!

Hale: MON, NOWS NOT THE TIME!!!!

(Looks like Hale and Shine have more in common than you expect…poor guys…)

Dorothy: …but I’m starving! Oh wait…

(She clicks her fingers and a phone appears – no connection, but it’s magic, we don’t argue with trivialities like that…)

Dorothy: Oh, Ken-Sushi…yeah, can I have a deluxe combo with tuna, salmon and a bit of manta as well? Yeah, it’s rare…don’t worry…just put it on Seravy’s tab…thanks! Dorothy’s castle…

Hale: (sweatdrops) So…magicians have vendettas as well…

Dorothy: Sorry, where was I? Ah yes, next stage up ahead…you can see the envelopes right?

Hale: Right…

(Weda runs up and gets the envelope…)

Weda: Road Block…yadda yadda…hey Hale, look at this one…

Hale: Huh?

Weda: You’re good at that Yugi-whatever game aren’t you?

Hale: Yeah…it’s the new thing at school…why you ask?

* * * *

Hale: (grumbling) I should have guessed…

Weda: Enjoy yourself Hale-kun…(to herself)…now to sneak off some sushi…

Hale: I don’t think might and magic comes here in the form of a card game…O.K, let’s see what horror I c…

(He turns…and bumps into Orin.)

Orin: Um…hello there…

(Hale stops…turns red…and turns around…)

Hale: SORRYSORRYSORRYSORRY! I DIDN’T MEAN YOU WERE A HORROR…DAMN, STOPTURNINGRED…

(Sees mom isn’t looking to tease, he turns slowly…)

Hale: Um…hi there?

Orin: H-hi…

(Awkward moment of silence…)

Hale: (quiet) I read this, face a ninja and a warlock…this wasn’t what I expected! She’s a ninja? There is no way a ninja should be that cute!

(Hale somehow gets it together to face Orin…)

Orin: Hale-kun, you have to pass a ninja skill and then pass a magic skill from Shine-chan…

Hale: S-sure…

(Hale seems to have some supernatural powers of his own (probably one dealing with Guu too many) and also some physical prowess, so matching Orin’s skills isn’t too difficult…completing the ninja action without blushing is the challenging part…)

(…after about three attempts of carefully watching Orin, he finally gets it and does her Flying Squirrel technique, using his own physical prowess to match some insane mana/agility combo, which Orin applauds.)

Hale: The scary thing is that was normal…

Orin: Shine-chan?

Shine: Right! O.K, you’ve done one…now…

(Hale begins to learn how to create a magic bullet, whilst Naruto and Sasuke’s speed gives them the huge advantage for the penultimate elimination leg…whether they know that or not…)

* * * *

NARUTO AND SASUKE

ROYAL FAMILY HOME: 2.32PM

(Naruto and Sasuke reach the top path where the castle is there to behold. They see the red hooded girl at the end where the doormat with the words ‘AKAZUKIN CHACHA’ are plain to see. The ninjas smile as they rush ahead and jump on the mat.)

Naruto: Say it please!

Chacha: With pleasure! Naruto and Sasuke…

Lillith: WAIT A MINUTE!

(Lillith seems to appear out of nowhere…)

Lillith: (coughs) Do you know how difficult is was to get through to this world, I thought it was done by a book BUT A CERTAIN SISTER OF MINE CHANGED IT SO IT GOES THROUGH THE WATER…

(Eve looks on, innocent as usual…)

Lillith: …anyway, I’ve been ignored for so long, and this is my gig, so I’ll do the ending introductions!

Chacha: B-but…

Lillith: No buts little gi…huh?

(Suddenly, Lillith gets surrounded by a huge pits of cigeratte butts, as Naruto and Sasuke sweatdrop…)

Lillith: (coughing) Smoking is bad for you *chiku chiku*…gah, who would you guys want to introduce us, this piece of storybook fantasy or cuttle widdle Lillith-chan?

*

*

*

Chacha: Naruto and Sasuke, you are team number one!

Sasuke: And no penalties this time, we’re doing good.

Naruto: Yatta!

(Lillith is in the corner, sulking…)

Lillith: Even in a game I’m treated like the second string…*begins to write ‘NASTY AND HORRID THINGS TO DO TO THE CONTESTANTS BEFORE THE RACE IS OVER…*

* * * *

2.35PM

Hale: Done it!

(Hale looks tired, but he’s passed the magic bullet saga as he and Weda are now allowed to get the clue and head to the end…)

Weda: …damn, wouldn’t share…I was hungry…

Hale: No time for that mom, let’s go…oh, and pay no attention to my face, it’s certainly nothing to do with the cute girl hiding in the corner…

(Of course, Weda turns…and no-one is there…)

Weda: What girl? Damn, wanted to make more fun of our charisma-kid here…

Hale: Quiet and run!

(As they do, Shine goes to the ‘tree-stump’ and smiles.)

Shine: You’re too nice sometimes Orin-chan.

(Orin changes back to human form as she rest down, red as always as she tries what another certain ninja girl seems to fail to do…talk to her love interest…oh well, at least she doesn’t get jealous or tries to beat up the guy if he likes another girl…like another couple of ninja girls…)

* * * *

2.40PM

Risa: I’m tired…

(The Haradas are barely half way to the castle, and are obviously a lot slower than Naruto and Sasuke, and Risa is getting very tired…)

Risa: Walk, walk and walk…I guess with the race near the end it’s showing how much resolve we have to do…BUT IT SUCKS!

Riku: I’d say considering what we were doing at the beginning of the leg we’ve improved a lot Risa.

Risa: I guess. Still tiring though…

Riku: Let’s just get to the end…we don’t know how far we are ahead of Hale and Weda…and we don’t know how far behind we are from Naruto and Sasuke…we’ve just got to keep one stop forward…

Risa: O.K…at least it isn’t mountain climbing again…

Riku: No knights to carry you away either…so let’s stop moaning and just plough ahead…

(The sisters do so, as two other teams are heading towards the Road Block with mucho gutso…)

* * * *

2.50pm

SHANNON/RACQUEL + MIRIELLE/KIRIKA

(Heading towards Dorothy’s castle, neither team want to risk resting too much, but they can’t run nonstop as it is a long trip to Dorothy’s, from the school and then to the castle, but moving ahead, Shannon and Racquel are still just ahead, but they can see the assassins behind them…)

Shannon: The last thing when you are tired that you want to see is two assassins behind you, after your blood…

Racquel: Well, let’s just keep it at our pace…the sense of magic in the air may turn things into our favour…

Shannon: Somehow I never get a good feeling when you say anything good…

Racquel: Why is that?

(Just behind them…)

Mirielle: If we lose now…

Kirika: Mirielle, it’s just a game. For once, it’s not like it’s life or death – let’s just do it, we can see them, if they mess up on the Road Block and we don’t…

Mirielle: We don’t know what tricks and traps are still up ahead. We can either get ahead or we won’t…and that uncertainty makes me nervous now…with the exception of perhaps the two young boys, we are physically better than all the teams here, and now…

Kirika: Mirielle, shut up and run.

(Mirielle nearly stops at the certainty of Kirika’s voice, but follows through and smiles.)

Mirielle: Aren’t we getting forward?

(Kirika doesn’t say anything…just turns red slightly…)

* * * *

3.10PM

DOROTHY’S CASTLE

(They both make it around here, with the mage and swordsman just ahead…Dorothy had her fill of sushi (and revenge) and seems asleep as Shannon and Racquel, both tired, arrive…)

Shannon: Now what?

Dorothy: Huh…man, more work…clues over there…go behind, help yourselves…

Shannon: (sarcastic) How helpful.

(It was to Mirielle and Kirika who watch Shannon do so and get the clue, where he and Racquel look through…)

Shannon: …must be good at might AND magic?

Racquel: Well, you are might and I’m magic…

Shannon: …well…

(They then see the assassins get ready to get the clue, Shannon quickly makes a decision…)

Shannon: I can summon as well…that works. No time, sorry Racquel…

(Shannon rushes in, Racquel doesn’t seem to mind…but when the other girls get the clue…)

 

Mirielle: I’m fine…I’ll do it. Trust me.

(Kirika nods as Mirielle is so close to Shannon that’s it’s going to be a battle to the death…something not too new for either team…)

* * * *

3.14pm

MAGIC CASTLE, ROYAL HOME

(Two exhausted Harada sisters collapse as after Chacha created a waiter rather than some water, she gives up and just introduces them…)

Chacha: Riku and Risa, you are team number two!

Risa: I swear…I’m never walking again…

Riku: You do realise that’s impossible right?

Risa: I know…but gah, where’s a hot spring when you need it?

Chacha: Here’s one!

(Chacha has created one…a hot bouncy spring on her hands…)

Chacha: HOT, HOT, HOT, HOT!!!

(She throws the spring away, blowing on her hand as Risa laughs, whilst Riku sweatdrops…)

Risa: (laughing) Not quite what I had in mind but almost as effective…

* * * *

Mirielle: …that’s inhumanely impossible…

(Mirielle gulps as Shannon manages to do a jutsu within 4 minutes, ‘Earth Breaker’ an earthquake based technique, which Orin applauds as Shannon goes over to Shine. However, the one weakness that Mirielle and Kirika have over the others…the facts that ALL four remaining teams have at least one link to the paranormal.)

(And as surprising as this sounds, Mirielle and Kirika seem to be involved in a more realistic world (not including the poison finger nails, insane agility of Kirika, the near infinite bullets and knifes that she and Chloe use, and rituals by Altena of course) and Mirielle is having difficulty comprehends or completing any of Orin’s ninja techniques…)

(…and things get worse when firing a bullet would be normally not a problem for Mirielle, but when it’s a magic bullet…)

Shannon: O.K…let’s gain the summoning energies…

(Shannon’s natural abilities are a huge advantage, and whilst Racquel is the magic specialist, he’s no slouch, and it only takes him a minute to absorb the mana and shoot the bullet…)

Shine: All done!

(Mirielle seems ready to panic, it took Shannon 5 minutes to do two and see hasn’t even done one…)

Shannon: O.K.

(Racquel joins him)

Racquel: We’ve got to keep on walking, let’s be quick and not take anything for granted.

Racquel: Right!

(The two leave as Mirielle struggles back with Orin…)

Mirielle: Damn, how do they do it? Kirika probably would have been better after all…

* * * *

3.26pm

Hale: (collapses) Trekking through the jungle seems easy now…

Weda: I would relax, but I don’t see a bar…

Chacha: A bar, let’s see…

Riku: DON’T!

Chacha: Awww….

Hale: Let her do so Riku-san!

Riku: I warned you…

* * * *

Chacha: Gomen Hale-kun, you and your mom are team number three…

Hale: Apology…accepted…

(The iron bar marks on his forehead suggest otherwise…)

* * * *

(Mirielle has finally done a ninja smoke bomb trick, kind of half-assed, but Orin feels sorry for her and lets her go. Yeah, first time anyone has felt sorry for Mirielle probably but now with Shine, she’s having a bit better luck because of the bullet base, but the fact she still has to use magic…)

Mirielle: Hopes are getting slimmer…

Kirika: Go for it Mirielle!

Mirielle: Kirika?

Kirika: Come on, don’t give up!!!

Mirielle: (smiles) Like I’d do that…even in hopeless situations…I feel that we won’t get out of this one…

(Energy forms from her hand…)

Mirielle: …but…

(…more energy…)

Mirielle: …I won’t give up!

(Mirielle fires a magic bullet to Shine’s approval, and he gives her the clue.)

Mirielle: How far as we behind them Kirika?

Kirika: About 15 minutes.

Mirielle: Darn…unlikely, but let’s try it anyway.

Kirika: As you said, we never give up…

(Mirielle and Kirika begin to move…)

Kirika: The fact was that she couldn’t do something that she wasn’t expected – but she still got through it. Whether we go now or not, we wait and see, but she can’t blame herself. I certainly won’t and she shouldn’t either.

* * * *

(Mirielle and Kirika begin running…but to their disappointment…)

Mirielle: Can’t see them…damn…

Kirika: Let’s go Mirielle. We can still finish…like we always do.

(Kirika grabs her best friends’ hand…as Mirielle flushes slightly. Mirielle then smiles and pats the Japanese girl on the head.)

Mirielle: Yep, like we always do.

(They begin to move…)

* * * *

4.06pm

Shannon: Tiring?

Racquel: Very much so…

Shannon: I don’t think the assassins caught up…

Chacha: You’re right!

Racquel: (seeing Chacha) Hello there!

Chacha: Hello there lady who Seravy-sensei is scared of!

Racquel: Really?

Chacha: Anyway, strong lady and strong man, aka, Shannon and Racquel, you are team number 4!

Shannon: We’ve got a leg to survive…we’ll do it…

Racquel: Right!

Shannon: We barely survived – those ninjas are now well ahead, and we’re in trouble. So next leg, we need to get out the big guns…and fast.

* * * *

4.30PM

(Finally, the two bishoujo assassins finish the leg, and meet Chacha on the hill…)

Mirielle: What a way to end…with some European child stories…

Kirika: Oh well…

Chacha: We’re a story?

Lillith: Don’t worry kid…

Chacha: Um…oh well…Mirielle and Kirika, you are the last team to arrive. I’m afraid you have been eliminated from the race.

(Mirielle nodded…)

Mirielle: Good whilst it lasted?

Kirika: Yes, a real change.

Mirielle: Back to business then?

Kirika: Sure…but first…

Mirielle: Yeah?

Kirika: Can we have a cup of tea?

(Mirielle laughs…)

Mirielle: Sure…hey kid, can you…

Chacha: Sure! Come on out, tea!!!

*POOF!*

(And yes…she actually makes it. It’s a bit large though…)

Mirielle: Big teapot…

Kirika: I can handle it.

(Mirielle smiles and nods…)

Mirielle: It was very interesting. It was something different and something that, especially in this leg, we weren’t used to. However, I must admit, what it did was show how good we could be as a team, and that is what we strived for.

Kirika: We did well, we didn’t win, but we did well. We showed what we could do, and as far as teamwork, I don’t think any team in the race could say they had better teamwork than us. From day 1, we were in the hot seat, and whilst we slowed down, we climbed back up, and it was just a couple of mishaps and things not in our favour which took us down.

Mirielle: The leg was not to our advantage at all. I won’t blame that for being defeated, those four other teams ahead of us were better on the day. Simple as that. For now, it’s time to return home, because god knows what has been left on our doorstep since we left.

Kirika: Time to clean up?

Mirielle: You could say that.

(Mirielle smiles as we fade to black…)

* * * *

NEXT TIME ON ANIME-MAZING RACE 3

* * * *

Nearly ending…just a few more episodes to go…

Goodbye to two attractive killer women – Mirielle and Kirika, in a leg that was certainly not what they were about. They were cool, calm, collective…and they messed up. Bigtime. I’m sorry to Noir fans, but hey, it’s another surprise – a real strong team is gone, and we’re down to what you could consider 1 strong team (Racquel/Shannon), 2 surprised teams (Hale/Weda, Riku/Risa) and 1 unpredictable team (Naruto/Sasuke).

With it coming so close to the end, I hope to finish it the week before I go to Ayacon, so people, start thinking about which series you want as a prize. For most of them, you will get the first DVD, but you can also claim for any of the series which the teams are from, so if you want a series like Chacha, Full Moon or Jungle Guu, they will be the fansubbed versions, as well as Yamibou as well.

So, another fortnight, and another magical girl show – Preat with me when we return!