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The Art of Persuasion

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“Come on!”

“No!”

“But we need all the help we can get to defeat Dharkon!”

“No way! Nightmare is one thing! That jester kid is another! But, I refuse to fight alongside that thing! We got tons of other Spirits that could do the job better!”

Believe me, king of dream land, the feeling is mutual .”

Meta Knight could hardly believe what he was witnessing. In front of him, Kirby was arguing with King Dedede about using a certain Spirit. Said spirit was the (previous) scourge of light, The embodiment of evil, the legendary nemesis of the universe: Dark Matter.

And apparently, both of them knew it.

“But you gotta help us!” Kirby argued to the spirit representing the shadowy swordsman. “Dharkon has taken control of all of our friends, who are spirits like you!”

Good. ” Dark Matter said with an air of finality. “ Maybe now, all of you can know how it feels to be surrounded by soul-crushing loneliness. Although, I suppose there’s a key difference; Nobody was actively trying to kill me.

“Oh don’t worry about that poyo!” Kirby said, suddenly sporting a happy mood. “We’ve been tracking down plenty of spirits and they’ve been helping us! And even so, the rest of the Smasher Brothers are still here!” The spirit suddenly began emitting waves of anger. “...Oopsie.”

Dark Matter’s spirit remained unamused. It continued to remain unamused as a fellow Dark Matter spirit suddenly appeared.

“Hey Kirby!” Gooey, the kind-hearted if absent-minded invader said. It then noticed the other spirit. “Hey Blade!”

Dark Matter said nothing. It began flying away.

“And where do you think you’re going?” Meta Knight finally said.

To find a spare clone body. Then, I shall continue to aid Lord Dharkon and the Crazy Hand in wiping out you pathetic “Smash Brothers”. And once all of you have fallen to the Dark, we shall find the being who flooded the world with light and make it pay dearly for erasing Lord Zero! Only after all of that, will we finally achieve our dream of a World of Darkness.

“Zero’s gone?” Kirby asked.

I cannot feel his presence, only that of Lord Dark Zero . Even then, not directly ” Matter said, slightly spitting at the name “Dark Zero”. It took Kirby a moment to realize who he was talking, since the creature in question had called itself something else: Dark Ne- “ What’s more, I feel similar energies emanating not only from Lord Dharkon, but also that fiend of light!

Kirby, Dedede and Meta Knight exchanged glances. Gooey didn’t quite get it, but leaned in to talk anyway.

“Guys, you don’t think-”

“I knew it! First that freaky god of destruction, now these monsters! That thing’s boss is bad news, no matter what!”

“But it doesn’t make sense. Dark Matter says Galeem got rid of Zero!”

“Perhaps two of Void’s incarnations discovered and waged war on each other? It’s happened before…”

“W-what do you mean, Meta Knight?”

“Kirby, I know you’re still hesitant about it, but you still must consider the possibility that-”

“NO! I-it was just mimicking me! That couldn’t have been me!”

“Who are we talking about?”

“VOID TERMINA!” The three smashers shouted at the same time.

“...How do you know that name?”

Everyone turned their attention back to Dark Matter’s spirit.

“How do you know the name ‘Void Termina’?”

“It’s a long story.” Kirby said hurriedly. “We don’t want to bore you.”

“We have time. Tell me.”

The heroes of Dream Land exchanged glances once more and began telling the story of the Jambandra Cult. It took a while, but mostly due to Kirby wanting to describe all the fun things he did with his friends during the journey and Dedede trying to make himself sound like the true hero of the story. Admittedly, Dark Matter was horrified by the revelation of Void’s core and the implications it held for both its boss and its nemesis, but it took slight sadistic glee at the clear distress it also had on Kirby. It also realized that, perhaps, there were more Jamba Hearts out there. If so, and given their ability to create Parallels in Another Dimension… well, that’s a backup plan to torment the smashers with in the future.

Dark Matter silently digested the info in the story.

“...Alright.” It said finally. “I shall be fair. I will give you one chance to truly convince me of why I should follow you and not Lord Dharkon. Make it count.”

Kirby and Dedede were about to get into a massive shouting pitch, when Meta Knight pre-empted them.

“You claim that you and your boss want a World of darkness. Dharkon also claims to want this. But…” Meta Knight gestured around the Mysterious Dimension. “This is a World of Chaos, not Darkness. Would Zero truly be happy with this?”

In all honesty, Zero probably wouldn’t have been happy with anything. Still, Meta Knight made a decent point.

“...Very well. I shall aid you for now.” Dark Matter said. “However, I shall not fight Lord Dharkon. Would be rather unwise to burn all my bridges. This way, it shall be a win-win no matter the outcome.”

Meta Knight and Dedede didn’t really feel at all encouraged by that deal, but that was enough to satisfy Kirby and Gooey. Dark Matter’s spirit flew over to Meta Knight.

“What? You ain’t gonna go with me?” Dedede asked, feeling half offended and half relieved.

“Oh no. With you, I usually just control you. Lending my power, however, is more about moving in sync. And while I can do so with you, I feel I can do much better with him. Besides,” Dark Matter’s tone grew more sinister. “I haven’t had a chance to meet this one yet. Know thine enemy and all.”

Meta Knight met the spirit’s glare, trying not to falter.

“I suppose what’s good for the goose is good for the gander.” He said in response. He tried not to feel too concerned about the orb that was a bit too eager to follow him. Kirby had no such concerns.

“It’s gonna be great! Being a hero is much better than being a bad guy! Maybe we can have have a huge brunch when we win! Maybe you’ll play with us more!”

Meta Knight could feel disgust come from Dark Matter’s spirit as Kirby and Gooey continued to discuss what they could do with their new “friend”. Thankfully Dark Matter didn’t get fed up and leave, but its voice filled Meta Knight’s mind.

“Remember, Meta Knight of the Stars, I serve Master Zero above all else. I will help you reach Dharkon, but if I have any reason to believe that even the tiniest fraction of Lord Zero’s essence remains in him or that I can regain my form ahead of time, I will break off my aid towards your cause in favor of aiding him.”

Meta Knight kept a cool look on his face. He didn’t acknowledge Dark Matter immediately and instead turned to Dedede.

“Still think teaming up with that demon is a good idea?” The king asked.

Meta Knight thought about the question for a bit before replying.

“...Is saving your men from being Dharkon’s slaves worth it?”

Dedede was clearly taken aback by the question and stammered to reply. Meta Knight did not even flinch.

“Then you have my answer. Despite what you may think Dedede, you are not the only who has lost their comrades.”

The knight took off further into the Mysterious Dimension., leaving the flummoxed king behind.