Choose your own adventure in this RPG-esque adventure that lets you—the reader—vote on its outcome.
When we last left our heroes, they were trying to decide, once and for all, who would now lead this new power trio of Bar-Bar, Render Girl, and Rivers. Only…there were a few complications. Render Girl was more keen on killing herself than leading, and Rivers just didn’t have any interest in leading at all. Eventually, Render and Bar-Bar agreed to fight to the death to decide the new leader, with Render hoping he would lose.
And that’s where you, the readers, came in. Who would win this epic battle? Would Render succeed in dying, or would he somehow—due, no doubt, to wacky hijinks—end up as the leader after all? And what about Rivers? Why was he so quiet all this time? Look for the answers to these questions and more in this month’s episode of The Gates of Life!
Render Goes Flying off a Cliff
Narrator: …Bar-Bar head-butted Render Girl in the gut and sent her flying off the side of the cliff!
Render Girl: Finally! At long last I will be delivered into the sweet embrace of death! To be reunited with my manhood in the afterlife is my dearest wish, and it is about to come true!
Narrator: But before she was able to realize her wish and plummet to her death, a large portal opened up beneath her and swallowed her up!
Rivers: What did she say?
Narrator: She was swallowed up by the abyss too soon to finish her statement. We will never know her final words.
Rivers: Hey…I have a question.
Narrator: For me?
Rivers: For no one in particular.
Bar-Bar: Narrator seems a bit disappointed.
Narrator: Don’t narrate me, BASTARD!
Bar-Bar: What?! BASTARDS!!!!
Rivers: Is everyone else burned to a crisp? Helloooo? Anyone? That’s not my question; I just want to know if there’s anyone else around to talk to, since Narrator and Bar-Bar seem to be in a heated debate.
Rivers: Perfect. I guess it’s time for a monologue. My question was this: Why didn’t Barin’s name change back? Shouldn’t we have reverted back to our original forms during the blast? I guess it just stayed the same for the sake of humor. Sigh! I just don’t understand this world sometimes! For example, where am I supposed to go from here? I seem to be the only character left capable of moving on the story without breaking down into an argument every few lines….
Neo Narrator: I see you’ve finally come to understand, my son.
Neo Narrator: I am the true narrator of the story. I have been waiting for you to awaken for quite some time.
Rivers: Awaken? What do you mean?
Neo Narrator: You are the true hero of the story. You are the only one who can bring meaning to this nonsensical heap of…nonsense.
Rivers: I am? But…wait…why didn’t you appear while I was spending all of that time actually trying to be the leader?
Neo Narrator: A true leader is not simply someone who desires the power. You had to rid your soul of greed and shed your ties to material gain before you could truly take on your destiny.
Rivers: And I got rid of all my greed and material wants in that fire?
Neo Narrator: Yes. It was completely burned off.
Rivers: Convenient! Especially at a time when the story was coming to a standstill.
Neo Narrator: Yes, my son. Now, you must begin your journey. Enter this portal I will create for you, and enter a new world. A world that is in dire need of saving.
Rivers: And I take it I’m the only one who can save it.
Neo Narrator: Correct, my son.
Rivers: OK. One more question before I get in this portal: Why do you keep calling me son?
Neo Narrator: I must go, my son. But you will have your answers soon…
Disguised Neo Narrator (DNN): Do not worry, my son. You hop through the portal with my guidance, leaving the bickering Narrator and Bar-Bar behind you.
Rivers: Why is a completely different narrator now calling me son?!
DNN: Neo Narrator will explain it all to you in due time, my son. For now, a new world awaits….
Narrator: OK, enough of this pointless arguing! We’ve got another round of fighting to the death to get to! Bar-Bar, get ready to take on–
Bar-Bar: Where did he…BASTARD!!
Narrator: Oh dear…I fear we’ve been ditched!
DNN: Welcome to your new home, my son!
Rivers: Wow…. This place is–
Which Gate Do You Choose?
Rivers: Wait…I didn’t even go anywhere! This was all a farce!
Rivers: Wow, look at all those giant forest cacti! And the sour apple lollipop ice fountains! And look, there are some dancing summer spring antelope butterflies! This place is a dream come true!
DNN: But it is not all lollipop ice fountains and dancing summer spring antelope butterflies, my son. Lately, a dark cloud of despair has descended upon this land.
Rivers: Wait a minute…. This is the Black Island again! Isn’t this at least the third time we’ve been here?! I hate this story!!
This poll ends on November 7.