The Protagonist’s Journey is a collaborative project between Your EDM and um.. that has been going on since May 2015. Authored completely by the two members of um.., the story follows a character known only as “protagonist” as he makes his way through various trials and tribulations in the terrible EDM world.

Today, the final act of the story was released along with their new track, “whos care.” Read the entire saga below.

it was a sad day in the kingdom. never ending landscapes of limitless creative possibilities turned to barren pits devoid of originality and inspiration. bright eyed children brimming with imaginative visions of ingenuity and passion alike turned to cardboard cutouts, shaped by the false external desires force fed into their daily lives by the evil witch of Doteland. she had cast a spell over the land, an illusory incantation leaving the dotes lacking of any sense of self ­expression. but there was one..

protagonist was busy promoting his fire mixtape when he stopped to watch a group of pigeons eating baby carrots someone had left on the ground. they flew away.. A little ways down the road he saw the most beautiful woman he had ever seen and decided to share his beats with her.

that’s horrible” she said after taking off the headphones and then walked away.

all of a sudden a small blur jumped from the nearby bushes, it was a dog, “protagonist! I heard your tracks on soundcloud. shit is fire.”

“thanks dog. where’d you learn how to talk?”

i don’t know. shut up and pay attention” said the dog.

“princess tictac has sent me” he continued ” I showed her your tunes and she was like, ‘damn wtf is this?’ she sees something great in you. she has made it your quest to defeat the evil witch and free the land from this era of formulaic imagination and trap hats.”

“what does making music have to do with killing a witch?”

“that’s what I said man. doesn’t matter though. you are our only hope.” the dog said just before he spotted a small animal scurrying down the path and darted away barking hysterically.

protagonist was reluctant to accept any such task. he knew the dog was right: trap hats are terrible, but how could he be the one to defeat the evil witch being only a mere part-time worker at the local ice cream parlor and uber driver on the weekends? this time of conflict drew him to meditation. he retreated to his favorite cafe “birds in paradise” to assess his options and have some coffee.

on his way there, protagonist ran across mentor. mentor was an old man, small in size, but nevertheless seemingly wise. “young man,” he called to protagonist. “what is your name?”

“protagonist” said protagonist.

“i sense confusion within you, protagonist. what are you running from,” mentor questioned as he ripped his e­cig.

“this dog just told me to go kill the witch and free the land from unoriginality and trap hats, but i don’t know how to do something like that.”

the man did not know what trap hats were given that he was almost 40 years old, but he understood the importance of the quest that had been bestowed upon him.

“sometimes we must do things that seem pointless or silly if it is something we truly believe in. the greatest rewards come not from taking calculated risks, but from taking an intuitive leap of faith. no one can dictate the right path besides you, protagonist.”

this allowed protagonist to reach within himself to discover a newfound source of wisdom and courage. he knew he was ready. mentor knew it too. “take this,” said mentor, handing him his e­cig, ” it is special in more ways than meet the eye. hold it close. it will serve you well.”

this day was different. with grey skies and thunderstorms overhead, the air gripped at his throat as he tried to steady his breath. a voice was calling to him, louder and louder, it was oppressive in his head, ringing, forbidding his thoughts from developing into anything distinguishable. the voice was familiar, as if he’d always known it, yet he had no idea to whom it belonged. he could nearly match the voice to a face when..

*glass shattering*

protagonist is snapped back into reality by the sound of a waitress dropping a tray of empty glasses at his favorite cafe, birds in paradise. a few people applauded sarcastically. this scene that had just played through his head was fading quickly. he felt an unmistakable significance to it all, however he knew he had a more pressing matter to attend to. how was he going to defeat the evil witch? he decided to hit up his friend, ally.

ally and protagonist were both producers and had collabed on some beats in the past. for years the two had held similar values and recognized the importance of creativity. they believed this to be an artist’s responsibility to its audience. they watched together, in dread, as the witches spell spread like a plague throughout Doteland, turning its citizens into an uninspired herd of cattle following the path of least resistance filled with white noise risers over 16 bar build ups. protagonist knew if there was anyone he could rely on to aid him on his quest, it would be ally.

protagonist DMed ally cause he knew his inbox was poppin’ and he might not see his text. he filled ally in on all the details surrounding the quest bestowed upon him and followed with a powerful proposition, “collab bro?” protagonist inquired. ally responded promptly with the sunglasses emoji, yet protagonist knew this would be no fun day in the sun. they needed a safe place to talk, somewhere the evil witch wouldn’t have spies watching. as protagonist thought this over, his hand brushed over something in his pocket… the e-cig that mentor gave him. he looked on the back and saw a small inscription, reading: made at Smokey Monsters & Nice Vapors. protagonist realized he would need to understand the power of this tool mentor had trusted him to carry. he quickly hit ally with a shared uber request. ally accepted.

they arrived at the address google provided as the driver reminded them to rate him 5 stars. As he drove away ally said to only give him only 4 stars because he didn’t have an aux cord. “ally is ruthless,” protagonist thought to himself as he sneakily gave the driver 5 stars. they got to the door and struggled to pull it open. it was a push door. the pair felt pretty confident after overcoming their first obstacle as they entered valiantly. protagonist could feel that this was no ordinary vape shop. the mods were all outdated and all the flavors were the bad fruity tasting ones that no one even likes. he knew there was something up. when they looked to the cash register they saw a dark figure wearing all black in the shadows with its back facing them. “why have you come here,” it whispered, slowly turning towards them while putting on its glasses. unsure of how to proceed, protagonist carefully placed the e-cig on the counter that was separating them. the figure laughed, “ha! so mentor has found another lost kid, naïve enough to believe he can make a difference in this sad place.” it continued, “fine, I will help you, but do not expect me to take responsibility for anything that may happen on your quest… my name is skrillex.”

skrillex moved towards a door that read “employees only”

“follow me,” he said shortly. 

protagonist and ally exchanged a quick glance before moving towards the tall black door that was now slowly swinging back shut. protagonist shrugged as he reluctantly moved towards the opening that the strange man had just disappeared through, with ally close behind. upon entering this surprisingly sizable space, they were greeted by the warmth of a large fireplace, with a few logs burning in the center. this was a relief to both of them as the air conditioning had been on full blast in the previous room. facing the fire was a pair of tall maroon arm chairs atop an expensive looking rug dimly lit by a small chandelier hanging in the middle of the room. 

“iced coffee?” skrillex asked as protagonist and ally were both a little startled albeit by a much friendlier tone than they had encountered in act II. “I have hazelnut and vanilla creamer, if you’d like.” he continued, ignoring how uncomfortable they both looked. 

turning towards the voice protagonist spotted him twirling around in his chair at an oak desk along the wall. on it was a small midi keyboard and a laptop that appeared to have some production software protagonist had never seen before. on each side of the desk were two smaller studio monitors, one of which appeared to not even be turned on.. 

“two hazelnut please,” ally answered for the both of them as protagonist stood perplexed that the man did not use ableton. skrillex nodded, and poured them their drinks. protagonist noticed immediately that the creamer was sugar free, but continued to sip it anyway. 

“come sit” skrillex said calmly as he rolled his chair in front of the fire. protagonist and ally found their way into the high-back chairs that, to their pleasure, were as soft and comfortable as they looked. “so, tell me why you’re here,” skrillex spoke, still friendly in his tone.

“well..” started protagonist, “earlier today i was approached by a talking dog,” he continued, expecting a look of disbelief when in fact the statement seemed to pique the man’s interest, “..and..” he started again, slowly, ” he told me that i’ve been chosen to defeat the evil-“

yeah.. word.” interrupted skrillex as he stood stiffly from his chair, “cool” he then exhaled as he turned away from them towards the fire, “tight.” he said finally taking a sip of his coffee, his other hand tucked in the pocket of his black skinny jeans with the exception of his thumb. 

“what’s your problem?” ally interjected. 

skrillex stared silent for a moment still facing the fire,” that dog came to me once before.” now slowly turning to face them again, “this quest was once bestowed upon me. and i took it. i could’ve done it too, if it wasn’t for.. ” he became silent as he peered grudgingly at a painting of a dinosaur flying a spaceship on the wall opposite his computer. “well.. I failed. creativity is as rare as ever and i’ve seen the obstacles that stand in your way. it is not likely that you will succeed, but mentor saw something in you and uh well.. he’s not usually wrong about these things.” 

not knowing where to start protagonist and ally just looked at each other feeling a mixture of excitement and fear. protagonist looked to skrillex, “so like.. what do we do?”

“you must travel to Velo City. a distant land. Uber drivers won’t go out there. there you will find the answers you are looking for, but you must move quickly, there is no time to waste. the queen’s spies may have caught wind of you by now. if they haven’t, they will have soon enough. you mustn’t stay in one place for too long.” 

the two producers started to thank skrillex as they all left the room together. as protagonist passed the counter he noticed that skrillex had left the e cig sitting there. he picked it up and turned to him again, “what’s so special about this? did you make it?” he said, looking again at the inscription of the store’s name on its handle.

“no. steve made that one. he doesn’t work here anymore.” said skrillex,” it’s a shame. one of the best craftsman in the game if you ask me. i suppose mentor gave it to you so that you would find me.”

“mentor told me to hold onto it though. he made it seem like it was more than just an ecig.” 

just then the front door burst open and two large men came barreling through. protagonist and ally ducked to the floor instinctively. 

“looks like you’re in trouble. use the back door. i can stall them long enough for you to get away.” said skrillex, now opening the door they had just come through. protagonist and ally quickly crawled through and began to look for the exit. while surveying the room ally noticed an open letter signed mentor at the bottom. without thinking, he grabbed it as protagonist yelled, “it’s over here!” 

protagonist swung the door open and they ran outside.. 

the light outside scorched their eyes as they left the dark back room of the Smokey Monsters & Nice Vapors e-cig shop. protagonist could barely see anything as his eyes twinged trying to readjust to their new environment. unable to take the time to acclimate, ally and he continued moving forward, although unsure of where they were headed. all protagonist knew was that he had to get away from those thugs chasing him down. just as his sight was coming back he heard a loud noise from behind, ‘thwap!’ before protagonist even had a chance to turn around he heard a large ‘thud’ and then spotted a behemoth of a man, standing over ally’s unconscious body, laughing. protagonist noticed there was nowhere for him to run. the guards had completely blocked off the slim alley way thwarting their escape. as he reluctantly lumbered towards the guard, ready to submit, he heard a quick ‘woosh’ followed by another loud ‘thwap!’ protagonist was knocked unconscious..

protagonist awoke in a shiny room decorated with platinum records all bearing the same egregious ’t’ logo from the notorious twirlin records. he scanned the room for signs of life only to see a single man sitting in front of a computer working in ableton. he saw the man’s fingers twitch almost like a conditioned compulsion as he copy and pasted full songs into new sessions only stopping to think of a new name and change a few notes in the melody. he called this one ‘natural disaster.’ as the producer exported the track and sent it off to mastering, protagonist heard a man’s voice screech, ‘ca ching!’ in approval from behind him. protagonist attempted to see who the excited voice from the other side of the room belonged to, but his restraints stopped him from turning around. upon noticing that protagonist had regained conciousness, the man from the back of the room started walking confidently towards protagonist’s line of sight. he recognized the man as the ceo of the infamous twirlin records, a label known for putting out regurgitated trash that all sounded incredibly uninspired and even more remarkably similar. the man put a cold, lifeless hand on protagonist’s shoulder.

“I have been watching you for quite a while now, protagonist,” he said, “ you’re a very talented producer. I think with the right guidance, from me of course, you could be successful in no time.”

protagonist couldn’t help but feel a sickness growing in his stomach at the idea of working with twirlin. as protagonist started to formulate a response in his head, the ceo cut off his train of thought suddenly by saying,

“I know you aren’t the only one this decision effects, though. why don’t we bring in your friend and see what he thinks.”

at that moment the door in front of protagonist opened and he saw ally being dragged in by the back of a chair that he was tied down to. ally looked more frightened than protagonist had ever seen him and he couldn’t help but feel somewhat responsible. the ceo continued effortlessly,

“all I’m asking is that you go back to your normal lives. before all of this ridiculous ‘save the kingdom’ nonsense began.” he said revealing his knowledge of their plans, ”you never asked for any of this, and between us, I think we both know that you don’t really have any clue as to what you’re supposed to be doing.”

protagonist knew there was some truth to what the ceo was saying, he really didn’t know what he was meant to do and he didn’t think he was the right person to be trusted with such responsibility. still though, there was something inside of him that irked him to move forward. the ceo could see the conflict storming in protagonist’s eyes and in an attempt to keep him on his heels, the ceo shoved a contract in protagonist’s face.

“as you can see here, all you have to do is give up on this ludicrous quest that you’ve been forced into and promise not to speak of anything that you’ve seen or heard since all this began. you will not be able to speak to any one of your new companions or seek out more information regarding this adventure. in exchange you will have the opportunity of a lifetime in being signed by us here at twirlin! as I’m sure you already know, all of our artists go on to be outrageously rich, famous & irresistible to the common people,” he finished with unbelievably pompous tenacity.

protagonist looked to ally for any sign of direction, as he felt more lost than he had ever felt before. ally gave him a defeated shrug and looked back to the freshly polished floor only to see his reflection staring back at him. protagonist noticed a singular tear fall and splash beneath ally’s sullenly hung head. protagonist was instantly flooded with memories of being back at home. his life was so much simpler just yesterday, he couldn’t help but dread his newfound responsibilities. he wished for nothing more than to wake up and be back at his house making beats. that seemed like a different life at this point.. protagonist knew that he couldn’t concede to these temptations, everything in his heart told him to emphatically refuse, but where would they go from there? protagonist thought on the matter a little while longer and then defiantly said,“no.” just then a loud bang followed by dark black smoke flooded the room and he felt his restraints being untied. before he had time to understand what was happening, he felt a confident hand tugging at his arm and a soft voice told him to follow. he grabbed onto ally and pulled him along, unsure of where they were headed yet again. he didn’t care though, all he wanted was to leave this place. sooner than he expected, they were outside and being pulled along by a hooded figure urging them to keep moving..

amidst all of the crazed chaos surrounding them, protagonist had only just begun to get a grip on his emotions and realize what was happening. ally and he were being saved, but, by who? up until this point, protagonist had never considered that anyone else knew of the quest and he definitely never expected anyone to have to save them from notoriously bad record labels.

he felt like they had been running for an hour before they finally stopped at what looked like a secluded park with no one in sight. suddenly he felt much more calm and safe from harm. without thinking, he asked, “where are we?” the hooded figure didn’t even stop to turn around, but raised their hand in a beckoning manner, signaling them to follow. their savior quickly climbed up an inconspicuous tree which seemed to have branches reaching across a very wide area. protagonist looked back to ally who nodded in an approving fashion as if to say, they should follow. before they could understand what they were climbing towards, protagonist saw a cleverly hidden rope which he grabbed onto and pulled himself up to a wooden floorboard leading them to a large door.

the three of them entered the treehouse and their hooded conductor finally spoke, but their voice was muffled by the mask they wore. protagonist and ally exchanged confused glances as they had no idea what had been said. exhaling a large sigh, the mysterious figure removed their mask and let her long blonde hair fall behind her back. 

“hey i know you.” protagonist said. 

“oh so you remember me?” she retorted.

“yeah you told me my music was horrible.” protagonist stated, irritated by the memory.

she smirked, “yeah, i only listen to house and techno.”

ally rolled his eyes. 

“I’ve been following you.” she continued

“you have? why?” protagonist inquired.

“i guess the princess didn’t want to leave anything to chance. looks like she was right.” she answered.

“its not like i was gonna say yes to them.” protagonist said, annoyed by the notion.

“do you really think they were gonna let you leave?” she continued confidently.

“well yeah but..”

“we don’t have time. please tell me you still have that e­cig.” she said as she cut him off.

“yeah i do, but skrillex said..”

she laughed loudly, “trust me, skrillex doesn’t know what he’s talking about.”

protagonist could tell the beautiful girl didn’t really care what he had to say so he kept quiet.

“eat these.” she said tossing a handful of organic gluten free vegan energy bars at them, “you’ll need your strength.”

protagonist took a bite and started to gag. it tasted like dog food.. and not the good kind of dog food either. the kind that the dog won’t even eat when you put it in his bowl. ally didn’t even open his. instead he tucked it in his pants when the girl wasn’t watching him, hoping that he’d never have to experience what protagonist had just gone through.

“and put those on. you’re going to need them to blend in on the way to Velo City.”

she ordered while gesturing at some clothes folded on a shelf in the corner of the treehouse. there were some skin tight black jeans, black v necks with bold white lettering which resembled a sports jersey that stretched down to their knees as if it were a dress. these shirts were made by mad recent, a shitty clothing company that knocked off some other shitty clothing company. there were also rounded dark sunglasses and clip on man buns. she then proceeded to hand them stickers with japanese words on them which none of them could read. she explained, “people wear this stuff all the time, no one actually knows what it’s saying.” protagonist knew that there was no point in arguing with her. she had just saved them after all.

he and ally reluctantly starting changing into their new clothes and with each piece they put on, they felt a little more pretentious and accomplished even though nothing had changed. the three of them exchanged looks across the treehouse. protagonist wished that they didn’t look so worried, but he knew this was his time to lead by example. “let’s go.” he stated, his voice cracking as it often did when he was nervous. there was no turning back now.

as they climbed down the rope leading them back into the calm and quiet park protagonist couldn’t help but feel anxious. his new clothes felt heavy and unoriginal, but he understood that he had to blend in with everyone else to be taken seriously. they made their way to a dimly lit road. the sun was going down and as it disappeared behind the mountain landscape protagonist felt a cold chill run down his spine.

they had been walking for what seemed like hours before they heard a loud, monstrous scream from the direction they were walking towards. as they looked to the sky, the silhouette of a dragon appeared in front of the moon. ally shuddered in fear, he had been afraid of anything reptilian after hearing about a conspiracy theory involving the kingdom being run by secret reptilians. protagonist knew this wasn’t a coincidence. dragons hadn’t been seen since 2012 when dubstep started getting really bad for a while and everyone thought that they had gone extinct after hearing so much screeching and cheesy chords.

they were still stunned where they stood as if there feet were cemented in place. the creature was flying towards them faster than they could say..

“is that a… a dragon?” ally whimpered under his breath, cutting off protagonists train of thought. there was no doubt now, it was coming for them and there was no point in trying to hide. protagonist felt a strange sense of confidence as it landed only a shouting distance away. he could see now that this dragon was being controlled by the evil witch.

she sat atop it’s back with fake looking diamond reigns. protagonist knew they were rhinestones though. as the witch came into their line of sight, she looked only to protagonist, disregarding the other two as if it was just her and protagonist having a casual chat.

“it’s nice to finally meet you in person, protagonist. you have come much farther than I ever thought you would when I sent my men to stop you back at that outdated vape shop.” the witch spoke sternly. “it’s time we put this ‘quest’ to rest once and for all.” she continued.

just as protagonist stepped up to say something, the dragon spit flames across the street just feet in front of them. at this point ally and the girl were safely behind protagonist, unsure of what their purpose was in this standoff. without fear, protagonist dashed across the fire and yelled back,

“I never asked for any of this, but now I understand why it must be done. you’re super lame and uninspiring and I’m not afraid of you!”

the witch laughed and the dragon took flight staring down at protagonist. without saying anything else, protagonist knew they were done talking. the dragon took a deep breath and protagonist could see no way of surviving this time. he reached into his pocket instinctively and pulled out the e­cig and started vaping. he noticed as he did this, that the dragon pulled a little bit closer to him as if it were attached to a rope inside of the e­cig. the witch lost her footing and fell off the dragon landing with a loud thud on the pavement. without taking any time to think about physics or reason, protagonist inhaled fatter than he ever had before and he felt the dragon pulling closer and closer. he was feeling out of breath, light headed and overall sickly as the taste of watermelon flavored vapor entered his mouth, it was his least favorite flavor..

he kept going as long as he could until he saw the tail of the dragon vanish into the other end of the e­cig. everything turned dark and he felt the weight of the world pushing him to the ground..

thwap! protagonist awoke to a bird flying into a window of some unfamiliar shop that he now realized he was sleeping in.

“what happened?” he murmured, utterly lost on what had just occurred.

“protagonist!” the girl and ally yelled in sync. “you stopped the dragon! you passed out immediately after, but you stopped the dragon!” ally continued, incredibly enthusiastically to the point where protagonist was just like chill, but he didn’t say that.

“and the witch?” protagonist beckoned.

“well, that’s another story.” the girl added. “she was gone by the time we got to you and we just wanted to make sure you were okay after all of that and..”

protagonist cut her off, “thank you.” he said reassuringly.

the girl started, “we don’t have much time though, if you’re feeling better, that is. we should be leaving sooner rather than later, especially considering I have no idea of whom this shop belongs”.

protagonist nodded. his head felt heavy as he did so. he knew this was the beginning of the end.

protagonist jumped out of his makeshift bed and immediately felt light-headed as he stood up so quickly. ally and the girl both grabbed him by his shoulders simultaneously thinking he might pass out again.

“we must go now.” protagonist said with a shaky breath.

he didn’t feel like he was at full strength, it had been a while since he’d had a chance to meditate and chill, but he knew he had to finish his quest. they were headed to Velo City. protagonist didn’t know what they had coming next, all he knew was that they were close to the end and that meant the witch was desperate. desperate and dangerous..

the trio stepped outside of the shop and protagonist winced as the sunlight rushed like a burning hot poker to his eyes. he readjusted and looked around, seeing more detail in everything that surrounded him and his friends than he had ever cared to notice before. the grass was a dry, light brown, like it hadn’t seen water in weeks. the shops all up and down the street seemed to be abandoned and forgotten as if they were left to slowly deteriorate into nothingness. protagonist felt a sickening feeling as he thought about all these people’s discarded dreams. he knew the importance of his mission. he understood what he must do. they started along towards Velo City and protagonist noted the quiet thoughtfulness that encompassed them. he felt the tension as they drew nearer, with each step feeling heavier and heavier. protagonist was watching his feet drag along when he heard ally’s puzzled voice exclaim,

“what is all of that surrounding the city?!”

protagonist stopped walking and looked up to see the witches dreaded guard in a synchronized flight, circling hundreds of feet in the air, enclosing the city in what looked like a domed force-field. the witch was backed into a corner and she’d do anything she possibly could to stop them.

“we’re about to find out.” the girl added as she stepped forward eagerly.

protagonist followed with a nod of his head and ally quietly whimpered as he continued forward. they stopped at the gate and waited for instruction as the guard stopped moving only to float high above them, clearly noticing their presence.

“what is your purpose here, mortal?” the guard floating closest to them questioned.

this caught protagonist off-guard and he quickly thought of something inconspicuous to say to try and fit in.

“suh dude” he replied trying to sound like he really found this phrase entertaining whenever people said it.

the guard chuckled, “aha suh dude, come in, that’s hilarious haha lol.”

“that was close” protagonist whispered to his friends before realizing that ally was laughing at the mention of ‘suh dude.’ the gates opened and they exchanged worried looks as they entered the city..

protagonist had not thought this far ahead. he never expected to get this close and now that he was here he felt anxiety amassing. with the e-cig encompassing the dragon in his pocket, he beckoned his friends to follow him. protagonist felt a presence within himself guiding him through the streets of the city, across the trade district and through the industrial factories to an old, yet impressive building that was blocked off by chains and ‘do not cross’ tape.

“this is the old king’s quarters” the girl explained as protagonist and ally looked confusedly at the entrance. “he barricaded himself in here before he went crazy, leaving the witch to rule after his slow descent into insanity which inevitably lead to his passing.”

without thinking, protagonist crossed the threshold, passing the tape and as he touched the first chain, the whole link promptly slunk to the ground as though it had been unlocked. he approached the door and it opened before him showing a spiral staircase leading to the top of the tower.

“we have to get to the top” protagonist explained.

they started climbing and protagonist felt something pushing him to go faster, as though he was meant to be there. he was gaining momentum as he climbed. speeding ahead of his friends, he made it to the top to find a room empty, except for a single window looking out over the city and an empty case on the windows edge. inside the case were some words engraved in the wood reading,

“to a fair king, from steve.”

protagonist noticed the Smokey Monsters & Nice Vapors logo on the case and realized that this must be where the e-cig came from. he quickly reached into his pocket and pulled out the e-cig. he placed it back in its original casing and heard a noise from behind him. ally and the girl had just entered the room and the three of them looked in awe as the stone wall behind them was moving and readjusting itself before their eyes. stones were shifting and rotating, creating space where there hadn’t been any before and now it looked as though an object was gliding towards them. it was a… a desk? a desk with cdj’s and some speakers on it, playing terrible music causing the trio to cover their ears in pain. it was one of those songs that you hear everywhere for a couple months before people start to realize that it’s actually not even a good song at all and they only liked it because they heard it once at a show while feeling uncharacteristically happier than they normally ever do. instinctively, protagonist reached for the flash drive plugged into the cdj’s and yanked it out. he immediately felt better. he actually felt a whole lot better, more so than usual when turning off bad music. ally and the girl felt it too. they looked at each other smiling, as though some disease had been cured from their thoughts. they were thinking clearly again! creative intuition rushed through their veins and it rejuvenated their being. this flash drive held some dark power over Doteland that was clouding the people’s thoughts and feelings, making them uninspired followers. protagonist knew that this was the reason he was here, he had to destroy the flash drive. amidst this excitement, the floor beneath them started to move. the cdj’s on the desk started to slide off to the side and ally screamed,

“the towers going down!”

the three of them sprinted down the stairs and out the door, leaving the e-cig and cdj’s behind to be crushed beneath the stone of the large building and solidifying the dragons permanent home within the e-cig. they looked around and saw that all of Velo City was crashing to the ground as well! bricks and glass ricocheting in all directions around them, drowning out their cries with sounds of demolition. protagonist grabbed ally and the girl and lead them back the way they came. dodging fallen structures and running as fast as they could through the large city, they saw the exit just ahead of them. protagonist screamed loudly as they made their final push through the exit, collapsing onto the hard ground with a triumphant breath, “sigh..”

just as protagonist started to close his eyes, the witch appeared, yet again!

“look what you’ve done, look at the destruction you’ve caused!” she scolded him. “do you think what you’re doing is helping? do you honestly believe that these people even care? they’re all ignorant to what’s going on around them, they couldn’t care less about originality and creativity!” she proclaimed.

protagonist felt a pain in his chest. he didn’t want to believe what he was hearing, but the witch was saying a lot of things that protagonist had thought to himself before. the doubt was clouding his mind.

“just give me the flash drive back and I can go about cleaning up this mess you’ve made here!” she finished.

protagonist looked at his friends, he looked back at the city, now in ruins, he thought about that dog that came to him and started all of this nonsense. he wanted to give up, he wanted nothing more than to just forget about this whole quest, but he remembered that feeling he had when he stopped the music. he knew he didn’t want to ever lose that excitement again.

he screamed, “accio laptop!” and his laptop came soaring towards him (wait this isn’t harry potter… whos care though lol).

he knew that plugging this flash drive into his computer would corrupt his project files and he’d lose everything he’d ever worked on over all those years, but it had to be done. he plugged in the flash drive and deleted the files, causing the witch to scream in agonizing frustration. she knew she had failed to break his spirit. the laptop ascended in the sky and radiated with a bright, piercing light before exploding into a million microscopic specs. the witch was gone.

protagonist felt a change in the air. he felt something he hadn’t in a very long time; he felt inspired. all around him dying fields began turning back into vibrant gardens filled with color and life. the air felt clean like a breath of fresh air after being in a dank and dirty studio all day. the world was changing around him. ally and the girl hugged each other in excitement and laughed at their accomplishment. protagonist felt happy. they started on their path home and reveled in all the beautiful landscape surrounding them that they had all but forgotten ever existed. after a day of travel, upon arriving home, there were no parades or parties to celebrate what they had done. no one had any clue what they had just accomplished. the citizens looked happier and everything around them was restored to its former delightful self, yet protagonist knew that his friends were upset that no one knew of their triumphant victory.

“what we have done, what we fought for, was not done so to be recognized as heroes or to be treated as anything more than anyone else. what we have done was for ourselves and if that makes anyone else a happier person along the way, that’s great, but don’t forget why we did this in the first place. to make the world a better place” protagonist spoke with a confident voice.
“there’s a brand new world out there, one that we’ve created for ourselves. be proud of what we’ve done here and never forget that we achieved this through love over everything else” he finished.

protagonist looked up to see ally smiling with a tear rolling down his face and as he looked to the girl, she surprised him with a kiss. protagonist’s body started pulsing all over and he felt paralyzed. the more he tried to move the harder it became and with a huge force of energy rushing throughout his body everything went black..

heavy eyes open to the sight of a messy room..

“that was fuckin weird.” protagonist thought to himself as he reached for his half full glass of water perched on his nightstand while trying to recall the insane dream he had just had.

It was quickly slipping away though. glancing at his clock he realized he should probably get up if he wanted to make his shift at the ice cream parlor on time. he slowly rose from his bed and moved towards his laptop, his feet stepping on more clothes than carpet. protagonist noticed he had a new soundcloud message. some excitement arose until he realized it was just another bot soliciting some free webcam site he had never heard of. not surprised, he opened up ableton to recall the project he had been working on the night before. it sounded terrible, much worse than he had remembered it. defeated, he closed his laptop and began his day.