"Kid...how is it possible your mom and dad are here?" Braden asked. "The park's closed. If you'd been left behind, they would have had the crew searching for you. Did you hide somewhere?"
"But how'd he manage to stick around?" Kaleb retorted. "I thought security and the cleaners combed the place. Maybe the reason it's so empty is because they've stopped coming? Is this kid a...a character from something?"
"I'm pretty sure he's not." Braden confirmed. The boy looked like no Disney character he knew of, which was saying a lot. Braden was well-versed in his Disney.
There was a sudden metallic crashing from somewhere behind them. The robotic wolf creatures had reappeared and Kaleb swore beautifully under his breath. The creatures looked almost hungry as the four humans entered their sight, metallic haunches locking up.
"Right now, I think we should get out of here." Kelly reasoned. "We'll have plenty of time to ask questions later."
"They might have a trace on you." Tony suddenly cried.
"What?" the three of them asked in unison.
"Follow me!" Tony cried, taking off towards Space Mountain. Braden nodded to Kaleb and Kelly as he faced the mechanical wolves. He made a low and round sweep with his brush and a hole appeared beneath the mechanical wolves. With a robotic yelp, they clattered down into it as Braden pushed the other two ahead of him, taking up the rear as they rocketed their way over to Space Mountain's entrance. Braden eyed the Fast Pass queue warily before they turned up the normal entrance and began clambering their way through it. Braden turned once to draw a brick wall of sorts to block them in the entrance, just in case the mechanical wolves had clambered out of the ditch.
Kaleb and Kelly wore amused and mystified looks as they roamed through the space-themed ride's queue, hurtling down corridors at a rapid pace. They finally entered the main chamber where the rollercoaster was located and looked down at it from above.
"What exactly are we doing here, Tony?" Kelly questioned. Tony did not turn to face her once as he continued to dash down towards the coaster.
"We've got to go on it." Tony cried back. "We need to lose them." Kaleb and Kelly looked alarmed, but Braden knew the drill for Space Mountain and had been on the ride many times, even considering it a personal favorite. Braden took the lead then, rounding down the stairs with Tony hot on his heels as the other two followed. There was some kind of strange arch at the bottom of the stairs and Braden learned what it was for when he stepped through it and gasped.
Replacing his normal clothes was a futuristic looking black suit of some kind, like something out of a sci-fi movie. The suit was fitted, reminding Braden of Samus' zero suit or perhaps the suits from the new TRON movie. Yes, the TRON suits were a more accurate representation, having the same light-up LED patterns that the TRON suits seemed to have. Braden's lit up in a deep sort of purple he liked and his hands were clad in a set of black gloves. Over his right eye was a small purple-tinted visor that reminded him of a scouter from Dragon Ball Z. Braden found his Disney Brush was tucked away in a secure zippered pouch of the suit and he had a holster to his side, with what looked like a laser gun of some kind. His laser gun had an LED trim too, in the same shade of purple as the suit. Even his DMD had taken on an even more futuristic look, almost blending in with the suit.
The others behind him gasped and he noticed they were in suits identical in every manner except for the colors they lit up in. Kaleb's was lit up in green and Kelly's was a lovely shade of aquamarine, but Tony strangely had no suit. Braden shrugged it off, realizing it was probably because Tony wasn't a Guardian. He then shimmied over to the ride controls as Kaleb sat in the very front of the train and on the left side, leaving the right side open for Braden to jump in. Tony entered the seat behind Braden's, with Kelly sitting behind Kaleb. Braden turned to the controls and realized nothing was visible, save for a small indigo-tinted disc in the shape of a Mickey Mouse head and a glowing green button. Braden tucked the disc away in a pocket and slid the disc into it, slamming his hand down on the button.
"Welcome to Space Mountain. Your name, commander?" A male voice with slight robotic distort to it asked them as the others peered around the room.
"Braden Young." Braden answered confidently, straightening up where he stood.
"All right, Commander Young, let's get the names of your team while you enter your seat." the voice replied, loud enough for the others to hear. He heard the others say their names one by one as he sat down in his seat.
"If you would elect a second-in-command, Commander Young?" the voice asked. "Just say his or her name now."
"Kaleb Aubrey." Braden called out loudly.
"Congratulations First Officer Aubrey, you're already seated correctly. Is everyone seated?" the voice asked.
"Yes." Braden replied. The restraints came down suddenly and Kaleb let out an impressed whistle.
"Commander Young, it seems your blasters have no charge in them. You and your crew will be permitted a temporary charge until you reach Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters. Please hold out your blasters in the blue holographic region on the sides of the vessel." the voice instructed. They gasped as a holographic blue lining appeared on the sides of their train. They removed the blasters from their holsters and held them out; the black laser gun-like devices suddenly lit up the respective colors of their spacesuits.
"Temporary charge granted. Prepare for launch." the voice said, and the train began to hurtle through the corridors. They passed through the lighted corridors that Braden could remember so well from other trips.
"Behind us!" Tony yelled, frightened. They turned their heads and saw mechanical wolves had attached themselves to their train. There was a panic at once, with them shouting and screaming. Braden turned and saw they were heading into the simulated space room. He turned and pointed his laser at the creatures, taking aim and firing. The mechanical wolf shattered into pieces of scrap metal at the contact and the others looked at Braden's gun in awe. Kaleb took aim at the second and took it down quickly.
"T-Minus ten, nine, eight." the voice began.
"This is wicked!" Kaleb yelled, brandishing his gun with a wild grin on his face.
"Five, four, three, two, one!" the voice concluded. There was a sickening lurch that threatened to make Braden dizzy and they suddenly plummeted forward into the dark abyss of space. Cool air whipped Braden's hair around and he noticed something seemed unusual. The coaster didn't seem to be moving in its normal path.
"This ride has some pretty advanced special effects." Kelly said appreciatively as she turned to face Braden. "It looks like real fire's coming out of the end of the coaster."
"...Fire?" Braden asked, a sickening lurch in his gut as he turned to follow Kelly's finger. Small jets of flame erupted from the back of the coaster, as though it were a real space shuttle.
"What's wrong, mate?" Kaleb asked, his hair being whipped around wildly. "You look awful peaky. You struck me as a guy that's fond of his rollercoasters."
"I am fond of rollercoasters." Braden began, pale as the pinpricks of light that represented the stars. "The only problem is that the fire wasn't there the last time I was on here!" He shouted as they suddenly dipped and turned. It struck Braden that maybe this wasn't just a ride anymore. He couldn't remember Space Mountain being this jerky or wild. The coaster turned, allowing a planet to come into view.
"Is that Mercury?" Braden shouted, gripping his blaster tightly.
"Definitely!" Kelly shouted back. "I never heard of this ride having planets appear on it!"
"I've never seen a planet before!" Tony shouted gleefully as they shot past Mercury.
"Hey look, Venus too!" Kaleb shouted back, pointing as they shot past yet another planet Braden knew had never been on the ride.
"We can't really be in space." Braden murmured. "We can't be. None of this stuff was ever on the ride before though..."
"Well, it's not like everything else we've seen tonight is grounded in reality, either." Kelly reasoned, but she reached through the barrier between their rows and clasped Braden's hand, giving it a gentle squeeze as though to comfort him while Kaleb laughed wildly as they flew past the Earth.
"Look, Mars!" Kaleb cried, still very much in awe. Sure enough they drifted close to the Red Planet as they passed by. They then zoomed towards Jupiter. As their ship zoomed right at Jupiter, it suddenly dropped and went under it. They looked back, highly entertained by the sight. Braden's favorite planet, Saturn, was just ahead. When they were almost to Saturn, the train suddenly stopped, for what seemed like no reason. A blue orb appeared just ahead of them.
"I don't think this is just a ride anymore." Braden said softly, eyes locked on the orb.
"This is great. What are we supposed to do out in space?" Kelly asked, looking around as though there would be some clue to tell them what to do.
"Ya don't see that every day." Kaleb remarked, gesturing towards Saturn's rings.
"The disc!" Braden cried suddenly, remembering it. He unzipped his pocket and brought out the indigo disc, throwing it at the orb. The disc floated into the blue orb, and the voice returned.
"Please use your Data Medium Device." the voice said. Braden raised his right arm, which had the DMD that had attached itself to his wrist, and he pointed it at the orb, and a great holographic map of Disneyland appeared before them.
"So this is it!" Kelly cried. "It's a hidden map. Walt hid a map in here so we could find the weapons we need to take down the Darklings!"
"Look at that mark on the map." Kaleb nearly shouted, pointing to a small red sphere. "Where do you reckon that is?"
"Looks like Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters to me." Braden said, scrutinizing the map. "So it looks like our blasters get an upgrade and there's something else there."
"All right. So how do we get this thing to turn back?" Kaleb asked. A red button suddenly appeared in front of Braden and Kaleb.
"You wanna get this one?" Braden asked, grinning.
"Yeah." Kaleb said, grinning. He slammed his hand down on the button and the train sped off, suddenly making some abrupt turns and dives. Earth appeared in their view and they could practically see themselves shooting down into the atmosphere, crashing right into Disneyland, and everything went pitch-black...
They suddenly barreled through a lit-up tunnel and found themselves back on the platform. The restraints opened up and they stumbled out, a bit disoriented but very amused.
"That was one hell of a ride." Kaleb said.
"I'll say. Leave it to Disneyland to impress me again, and just when I thought I knew everything." Braden replied.
"At least we've got a way to destroy those wolves." Kelly said.
"Pretty wicked costumes." Kaleb said, giving his own costume another look-over.
"Yeah, kinda crazy how that happened. One second we're wearing normal clothes, the next second we look like something out of Star Command." Braden responded, admiring his laser gun. Then Braden looked at the exit queue.
"Come on guys," Braden said. "We've got to go check out the Astro Blasters now."
The four of them advanced through the exit queue with their laser guns raised, ready for anything.