Splash Hill...a vast, beautiful place situated on the ocean, with rolling hills, crystal-blue waters, and an endless summer sky. During the day, Splash Hill was a place of sheer beauty. But its majesty truly came about when the sun went down; then, people could see a dazzling sunset before their eyes. It was a beautiful place to just rest and relax the day away.
On this particular day, a young woman was napping on the soft, sandy beach. She had long, blonde hair that reached down to her back, and was dressed in a green one-piece bathing suit. All of the essentials for a stay at the beach were with her; a bottle of sunblock, a book, snacks, a beach towel, an umbrella...yes, Jaqulin Strife was certainly at ease with herself on this beautiful day.
'Ahh...this is the life,' she thought to herself, a smile working its way across her face as she slept. 'There's nothing like some time on the ocean to help relax your nerves. Peace and quiet...just what I've always wanted! Heh, maybe I should show this place to Carter and Reminy, I'm sure they'd love it here.' She turned on her side and continued to slumber. 'Though, I do feel bad about not bringing them with me today. And it IS kind of lonely out here without somebody to talk to. I mean, yeah, they can be kind of annoying, but still, they're my best friends! Meh, I'll make it up to them. Next time I want to come down here, I'll bring them along for the ride. I'm sure they'll love it out here. For now, it's just me and some peace and quiet...'
The sound of a falling tree jarred Jaqulin awake from her deep sleep. "Oh, what now?" she grumbled. She listened closely, and could hear machinery working in the distance. "You have GOT to be kidding me," she sighed as she got up from her towel and clipped a beach gown across her waist. Then, without a second thought, she dashed away from the beach, curious as to what was going on.
"HOOO-HO-HO-HO-HO-HO!!" laughed a rotund man with a bushy orange mustache as he watched from a floating hovercraft. "I love the smell of freshly-cut timber in the morning!"
The man was watching an army of his robotic minions work at cutting down the trees in Splash Hill's forest. One by one, the robots hacked at the mighty trees, bringing them crashing down to the earth, while other robots hauled the dismembered trunks away to giant roving woodchippers.
Little did any of the robots realize, however, Jaqulin was silently watching the action unfold from behind one of the remaining trees.
"All it will take are a few more trees," the mustachioed mad scientist cackled, "And soon, I will have the PERFECT spot to build my all new Eggman-Land!"
"Eggman-Land?" Jaq repeated silently to herself. "Yeech...what a tacky name..."
"And the best part is, with that annoying little hedgehog miles away," Eggman chortled, "I can build it in peace! And without him interfering with my plans! It's flawless, I tell you! FLAWLESS!! HO-HO-HO-HO-HO!!!"
Jaqulin gritted her teeth. "I haven't even met this guy, and already he annoys me," she growled. "I gotta stop this guy from logging the rest of this forest!" Jaqulin thought to herself for a moment. "...Wow. I sounded like a total hippie when I said that, didn't I?"
Shrugging off the notion, Jaqulin flicked her wrist, and a long, keylike object appeared in her hand. It was wrapped in tattered bandages, and had two black angel-like wings surrounding the handle. Jaqulin took aim from behind one of the trees at a robot that was cutting one down.
"Magic, don't fail me now," Jaq muttered to herself. "Fire!" A blast of fire leapt from the edge of the Keyblade, rocketing right into the robot and detonating it on contact.
Eggman looked down at what was left of the robot. "Bah, it must've overheated," he shrugged to himself. "Perhaps I should have picked a cooler day to do this..."
Jaq looked up at Eggman. "Looks like he doesn't suspect anything," she said to herself. "Guess it wouldn't hurt to do it again..." Jaqulin aimed the Keyblade at yet another robot. "Fire!" she shouted as the fire engulfed the robot and destroyed it.
Eggman looked at the other destroyed robot and pounded his fist on the edge of his hovercraft. "Ooooh, this is getting ridiculous!" he roared. "When this is through, I'm upgrading every robot's cooling fans so this won't happen! Wait...what?" Eggman looked at a monitor on his hovercraft. "They DIDN'T overheat?! Impossible! That could only mean..."
"Took you long enough to figure it out, Tubby!"
Eggman was startled when Jaqulin leapt up from underneath him and slammed her Keyblade into the bottom of the hovercraft. He quickly regained balance, and saw the young woman glaring up at him.
"Well, isn't THIS a surprise?" Eggman snarled. "I was expecting that pesky hedgehog to come and derail my plans, but it was only a little brat with a giant key!"
"Say that again, I dare you," Jaqulin smirked as she spun her Keyblade.
"Big words from such a little lady," Eggman smirked. "But words can only get you so far! CHAAARGE!!" Eggman thundered.
Ten robots surrounded Jaqulin, ready to take her in. Jaqulin put a hand to her face and looked defenseless. "Oh...ten robots against little old me," she sighed mockingly. "Whatever shall I do?" A split-second later, a wicked grin spread across Jaq's face as she threw her Keyblade into one of the robots' faces. She leapt forward, over the robot, and grabbed the Keyblade, ripping it across the robot's face and carving it in half. Two more robots tried to grab her, but she turned on her heel with a swing of the blade, slicing them like butter. Jaqulin thrusted her Keyblade into another robot, and with a grunt, swung it into three of its comrades.
Jaqulin looked at the last three robots and smirked. With a quick motion, she raised her Keyblade into the air and called out, "Thunder!!" Three bolts of lightning struck the robots, short-circuiting them and finishing off the last of the robotic army.
"Okay, okay, I give up!" Eggman cried as his hovercraft lowered to the ground. "Please, don't hurt me! I swear, I'll find a new place to build Eggman-Land! Just let me go in peace!"
Jaqulin crossed her arms warily. "Feeling a bit of regret, now, are we?" she asked. "If you had just respected nature, I wouldn't have had to break all your fancy little toys. Oh, and Eggman-Land? Psh, can you get any more tacky?"
As Jaqulin continued to speak, Eggman smirked beneath his facade as he hit a button on the control panel. Two metal arms shot out from the sides of the machine and grabbed Jaqulin by her wrists and ankles. The hovercraft lifted back into the air as Eggman looked at Jaqulin through his dark sunglasses.
"I apologize for the sudden harshness," Eggman apologized, "But I really don't appreciate it when people stick their dirty little noses into my business! But I must admit, you have quite the mean streak to you."
'Great, I let my guard down when I shouldn't have,' Jaq thought to herself. 'How'm I gonna get out of this one?'
"Perhaps I can use you as a bodyguard...of course, with a little mind control, I can easily make you one," Eggman said. "And that giant key sword of yours is intriguing...I'll have to study it later on."
Suddenly, something whisked through one of the mechanical arms, freeing Jaqulin's wrists and making her bend over. "Gah!" Jaq yelped with surprise.
"No! No! NO!" Eggman groaned. "Not again!"
The blue streak from before came whistling by again, knocking out the other arm and freeing Jaqulin all the way. She screamed as she plummeted down to earth, but felt herself being caught by something. Jaqulin, normally not one to be afraid, clung onto that something for dear life.
"He-hey, you don't need to worry anymore! You're safe now!"
Jaqulin opened one eye slowly, and then the other, noticing that she was on solid ground. She then looked at her rescuer; a three foot tall anthropomorphic hedgehog with blue fur, tan on his muzzle and chest, and emerald green eyes. All he wore was a pair of white gloves, and red and white sneakers with gold buckles.
"Uh...th-thanks," Jaqulin studdered as the hedgehog let her down. "Who're..."
"You insolent little hedgehog!" Eggman snapped. "I'll make you pay for that!!" Eggman hit another button and deployed a large wrecking ball on a chain.
"We'll save the introductions for later," the hedgehog snapped his attention to Eggman. "Just give me five minutes to take care of business!"
Eggman lurched forward and swung the massive ball-and-chain at the hedgehog, but he and Jaq quickly darted out of the way. The hedgehog curled up into a ball and launched forward like a pinball, knocking Eggman in the head. Eggman managed to get his hovercraft out of the ground and tried to hit the hedgehog again, but Jaqulin stepped in front of the ball and used her Keyblade to bat it backwards like a baseball. The ball lopped around and smashed into the cockpit of the hovercraft.
"D'OOOF!!" Eggman grunted. "Jusht you wait, Shonic, I'll get you yet...jusht ash shoon ash I get myshelf shome bandagesh..." Eggman, despite being crushed by his own weapon, piloted his hovercraft off into the distance. Jaq and the hedgehog could hear him mutter, "I HATE that hedgehog..."
The hedgehog dusted his hands off. "Different time, different place, and yet the same old result," he smirked. "He'll never learn!" He looked over to Jaqulin, who was staring at him in surprise. "Hey, are you alright?"
"Hm?" Jaqulin snapped out of her trance. "O-Oh, yeah, sure," she nodded. "Just kinda zoned out, is all. Uh...thanks for the rescue."
"No problem, it's what I do," the hedgehog smiled. "And, you are?"
"My name's Jaqulin Strife," Jaqulin introduced herself. "Your name is Sonic, right?"
"That's me," Sonic pointed to himself proudly. "Just a guy who loves adventure!"
Jaqulin giggled. "Well, thanks for the save!" she said. "You were awesome back there!"
"Eh, it's no big deal," Sonic shrugged. "I've dealt with Eggman millions of times before. But listen, if he causes trouble for you, don't hesitate to gimmie a holler, alright?"
"No problem," Jaq nodded.
"Well, I gotta get going," Sonic said as he was about to run off.
Sonic stopped before he could get going. "What is it?" he asked.
"You think we could, you know...hang out some time?" Jaqulin asked.
Sonic rubbed his chin for a moment...and grinned back at Jaqulin. "Sure, no problem," he said. "Later!" And with that, Sonic dashed off.
"Bye!" Jaqulin called as Sonic ran off. She fixed her hair as she watched the hedgehog run. 'Huh,' she thought to herself. 'He seems like a nice guy...I'll have to introduce him to the others.'
And with that, Jaqulin strode back to the beach to continue her day of relaxation.