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The stroke of midnight, a group of shrouded figures can be seen heading into the main tower of the quiet town of Ice Cream Stand.


A faint light can be seen from the main room of the tower, Sam standing at the window and watching out into the dark sky.


The group of shrouded figures entered the room, Sunbucks the first to lower his hood.


"Ah so you've all come.”

“Yes, yes, sit down and make yourself comfortable!"

Sam turned and held his arms out with a welcoming smile.


The large figure lowered his hood and walked over to the right of Sam, it was Xenko, the right hand of Sam.

The wolf humphed,

"I was having such a great nap..."


Sunbucks approached the left of Sam and stood beside, the rest of the figures sat around the table all questioningly whispering.

Sam closing his eyes and waving his hand in a calming manner.


"Now now, I know you all must have questions…”

“But amongst all of the citizens, I have asked you all to come to join the Council of the Stand."

Sam materialized at the center of the table a miniaturized version of the town.


"We are in dire times…”

“My friends."

Sam waves a hand and a swarm of darkness encroaching from the south side of the town,

"Yes…”

“This is what awaits us outside of our borders..."

The many hooded figures gasped and mumbled about.


"You are saying we would need an army?”

“To that which we do not!"

A figure shouted out, Nyathearai lowered her hood,

"Even so…”

“With my vague visions I can see we have gathered such."

Sam nodded to the seer's comment.


A small can like creature lowered her hood, Roflspam!

"But where would we get such an army?"

She giggled unable to control laughter.


Sam turned and looked out the window as the dawn approached,

"There is always hope…”

“And many potential friends out there in the unknown worlds."


He looked upon the skies, arms folded behind his back,

"We will have to bring that hope to us."


The cloaked figures mingle amongst themselves, puzzled by what the almighty lord of ice cream had to say.

Xenko leaned over to Sam,

"How do you mean…”

“Sam?"


Sunbucks on the other hand,

"You have a plan right Sam?"


Sam lowered his gaze and turned to face the council,

"This is what I have called you all here for."


Sam calmly stated out,

"I will leave some of the council members here to rule over the Stand, but…”

“We will have two groups ask for aid from two mighty empires..."


He stated once more to the council as they whispered about,

"Xenko, Nyathearai, Roflspam, and Treekeeper will go west to a faraway island…”

“Sunbucks, Myself, and my little robot Beepboop will head to the heavens."


Xenko blurted out,

"But Sam!”

“I must accompany yo-"


Sam interjected,

"No Xenko, I trust you will lead the other group well."


Xenko looked at Sunbucks with disdain and humphed,

"Fine if it so must be, I follow the word of Sam."


Sam looked around the room, and from the corner out came a large green machine, a calculator of sorts,

"I trust that you will keep the stand in order LP81."

The council turned and saw the creature as numbers streamed across it's eyes.


The machine nodded as the named few gathered with their respective teams.

Treekeeper just outside the window as he grew himself taller to see the goings about.


The remaining council members stood by as the groups left the tower, LP81 standing at the head of the table as the final view, as the group set out.


At the base of the tower Xenko bowed before Sam, his team behind him.

Nyathearai, Roflspam and the Treekeeper.

He turned and led the team on into the wilds heading east with a small carriage and a cowsteed.


Sunbucks and Sam watched on as they left the town, Sunbucks looked up to Sam,

"I noticed you mentioned the heavens Sam."


Sam looked down and smiled,

"Yes young one, the heavens."


Sam walked the opposite direction into the fields to the east Sunbucks puzzled but still following.

A little beeping robot followed closely behind with it's short stature.


They reached a field scattered with ice cream flowers, as they approached a sign.


The sign had scribbles the words carved in multiple times,

"FREEDOM"

It said.


Sunbucks approached this sign as Sam stood idly by,

"So…”

“What does this have to do with the heavens?"

Sunbucks prodded curiously…


Sam stroked his beard and smiled,

"Patience Sunbucks."


Sunbucks laid back into the ice cream flowers and looked to the sky, the little robot sitting by with the antennae beeping red.


"So what's the story with this creature?"

The robot beeped in reply,


"That is a story for another time."

Sam replied.


Moments passed, Sunbucks attempting to converse with the robot, but only receiving a vacant stare and beeps in return.

Sam looked at a broken pocket watch and looked up to the sky,

"Just in time."


The sun was directly set above the sign, the letters of FREEDOM began to glow.


A beam of light struck the sign and from the ground popped out a rock, the rock suddenly spread it's wings and flapped it as mightily as it could, hopping onto the sign and then pressing it's face into the Great Mighty Sam.


"FREEDOM!"

It barked, poking it's beak over and over at Sam.


Sam peted the rocky creature,

"The EagleRock of freedom, we ask for your aid..."


The rocky bird started spouting about of freedom once more.

Sam faced Sunbucks,

"This creature will take us to the heavens."

The bird lowered and raised it's head as if nodding along.


Sam called for Douglas, Sunbucks' mighty cowsteed.

From the skies the cow came hopping down.


Sunbucks yelled out,

"It's Douglas!"

Sam nodded and as the cowsteed landed, he patted Douglas, a large pair of rainbow wings sprouting from the glorious steed's back.


The EagleRock hopped off the sign and urged the mighty Sam to ride upon his back.

Screaming freedom before flapping his wings to stay in a constant float.


Sam floated onto the EagleRock and stood on his back,

"Now Sunbucks, mount your cowsteed and follow the EagleRock!"


Sunbucks hopped onto Douglas and helped the little struggling robot on.

Douglas taking a kneel before hopping into the air, flapping his majestic rainbow wings as he soared to reach the EagleRock.


The EagleRock soared high above the clouds, the mighty cowsteed Douglas following closely behind.

Sunbucks cleared the layer of clouds and could see a marvelous view…

An endless sea of clouds that he has never before seen.


Sam turned and saw the awestruck Sunbucks, the little robot hanging off Sunbucks' cape trying not to fall.


He waved as they soared across the skies, they traveled further east across the sea of clouds.


Soon Sunbucks could see, a large golden kingdom grow larger as they approached.


A massive castle that shined in the sun…

With towers and gates and many tall spires.


Sunbucks looked down and saw with amazement, many cowsteeds roaming as if the clouds were solid ground.


Sam looked back and pointed towards a rather large gate, Sunbucks nodding as the group soared towards it.

Just above the gate was a landing for visitors, but before they landed they saw golden clad guards waiting for their descent.


The EagleRock landed, Douglas followed soon after.

A visibly larger guard with small dollar sign pauldrons approached.

"Ah…”

“The mighty Sam you grace us with your presence."


"It has been far too long since you have graced all Donor kind."

The guard bowed,

"But to my understanding you seek to speak with the Council of Donations."


Sam nodded,

"I am."


Sunbucks tilted his head in confusion,

"You've been here before?"


Sam replied,

"Of course Sunbucks, oh so long ago!"

He smiled.


Sam floated off the EagleRock, few lower tier guards bringing a sack of golden nuggets for the EagleRock to feast on as he spouted freedoms.


Sunbucks hopped off Douglas and heard a clank behind him, he turned and saw the robot fallen face first into the golden ground,

"Oops!"


He picked up the robot and helped it on it's feet as it beeped a lighter tone of red from it's antennae.


Sam moved along following the larger Guard, Sunbucks, and Beepboop following closeby.

Sunbucks curiously looked around as they walked through corridors of wonder.

Many golden citizens and dollar signs and coins!


"Wow…”

“This place is just…”

“Magnificent... and shiny."

Sunbucks stated while awestruck of the massive gold architectures and magnificent workmanship.


"Yes Sunbucks, these are the Donor Kind, very rich in status and very kind…”

“But I fear that it is not shared within the council that holds this kingdom up."

Sam stroked his beard and faced the Guard as he led.


"How is the mighty Head Councilman, Grakmarr, as of late?"

Sam asked, the guard turned just slightly to reply,

"It may seem all of the kingdom is upon his shoulders, but he has good intentions regardless of whether or not he is rash during your meet."


Sam nodded in response to the Guard, as they reached a large courtyard a rather impressive structure in the center.


Sam and Sunbucks walked up the steps, the Guard pausing at the bottom,

"This is as far as I am allowed, mighty Sam."

Sam nodded and continued on opening the large doors with the aid of Sunbucks, entering a hallway.


As they made their way through the hallway Sunbucks looked around seeing many trinkets and adornment in cases along the sides of the hall.

A light emitting from the main room ahead.


Chatter could be heard ahead, Sunbucks staying behind Sam as they reached a large circular vertical room.


Chairs that seemed like thrones growing taller to the back center of the room.


"May all the donations be gone into completing these new structures."

"We must be wise before we invest in such..-"

"Nonsense, it is the wise decision-"

The golden armored council donors sat on the thrones as they spoke with one another.


Sam entered the room, the head chair that was taller than the rest, a figure in many jewelled and gold adornments sat seemingly bored of the idle chatter of the rest of the council donors.


He sat up as he saw Sam enter the chamber,

"Ah…”

“Sam just in time for our idle chatter."

His mighty voice rang out the council growing quiet as all eyes were upon Sam.


"Ah... Grakmarr, far too long it's been, I see many things have changed since I've been here last!"

Grakmarr nodded in response as he sat up.

"Now, why have you called for the Council of Donations may I ask?"


Sam raised his arms out,

"Not all is wonderful down on the earths that I reside.”

“I have asked for the Donations to aid us in our time of need."


The council began to whisper and chatter, Sunbucks looking around the tall throne-like chairs.


Sam pleaded,

"The darkness comes once again."


The council gasped and chatter became louder.

Grakmarr raised his golden gloved hand,

"Sam…”

“We do not meddle in the affairs of those that are earthbound..."

The chamber grew quiet.


"Even here in the skies you have created for yourselves, you are not safe from this darkness if you do not aid us..."


Grakmarr nodded,

"But do you know this for sure?”

“I have a kingdoms best interests in mind."


The council began gesturing against the words of Sam and in favor of Grakmarr,

"I have a kingdoms best interest in mind.”

“Sam I apologize..”

”But the council simply does not donate when asked."


Sunbucks moved ahead in front of Sam,

"You have to!”

“I've seen this… 'darkness', it's not ordinary!”

“And just because someone asks doesn't mean you should turn them down!"


"There is no u-"

Sam motioned for Sunbucks to calm himself,

"No!”

“If you believe they are so mighty Sam, they are cowards for not helping us!"

Sunbucks interrupted.


Grakmarr began to lose his patience standing idly by listening to the earthbound creature.


Grakmarr stood himself up and phased into light that flew up then landed right in front of Sunbucks.

"You think you know of responsibility young one?"


Grakmarr materialized a long golden spear, the tip with a sharp dollarsign, his wings a fiery blaze of coins.


Sunbucks stoodfast readying his stick.

Sam pulled Sunbucks back,

"Enough I apologize for my young protege's actions mighty Grakmarr.”


"We have overstayed our welcome here.”

“Come along now Sunbucks."

He turned and began to walk the other direction, Beepboop dragging along on the end of his robe.


Sunbucks grit his teeth,

"I've seen it with my own eyes, swarms of darkness they just keep coming, and one day even your mighty gates will be darkened."


Sunbucks turned and made his way out in a rage.

Grakmarr dematerializing his ranseur and standing in watch as the earthbounds left from the council chambers.


The Guard waited for the group,

"Did everything go well mighty Sam?"


Sam shook his head,

"I see, may I escort you to your steeds."

The guard turned and lead the group back to the landing.


Sunbucks lowered his head as they walked back, Sam giving him a pat on the head,

"It's alright Sunbucks, not everything goes our way."


"I feel like I messed up our chances, if I had let you spea..-"

The small robot held Sunbucks' hand as it walked beside beeping as they went.


Sunbucks looked to the side and saw,

"Thank you."

Sam smiled and walked on ahead.


From a large tower, the mighty Grakmarr stood silently on the balcony watching the group make their ways to the landing.


Grakmarr sighed and looked out to the large golden sun,

"You were wise to turn them away..."


Porcelain skinned arms began to wrap themselves around Grakmarr and his golden armor and adornments.


Grakmarr rested his hand on the very arms,

"It makes me wonder if I have done the 'right' thing."


A face appeared and the hands of the porcelain skin began to urge the face of Grakmarr into a kiss.

"I trust in you and everyone on the council and the Donor Citizens believe in you."


Grakmarr watched as the group mounted their steeds and began to fly off.

Standing silently in pondering of his own actions and words this day.


As they flew, Sunbucks with a defeated look across his face, but Beepboop closeby, he smiled at the robot and turned his head to look upon the kingdom once more as they flew away further and further.

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