With the Kart tournament delayed for the work week, all began to return to normal in Smash City. And what could be more normal than a mid-week kidnapping of Princess Peach?
Isabelle encountered some panicking Toads in the street, going about their daily business while running, flailing, and shouting like they were in danger. Inquiring about this, she learned that Peach had been kidnapped. By Bowser. AGAIN. The party went to Peach’s Castle to investigate the scene, but Mario and Luigi told them that they had the kidnapping case under control. (Well, Mario told them that; Luigi would have liked the help!) Mario did say that there was a “related problem” that he would like help with. Since this group had aided Samus Aran not long ago, he asked if they could go to her ship and help her with a current problem she had. He had no details aside from that.
This seemed suspiciously unrelated to the Peach kidnapping, and moreso when Samus (in her armor) wanted them to come inside immediately. Plus the ship was depowered instead of floating, Samus appeared to be shorter than usual, and something was very off about her armor; the coloring was more pinkish than orange. “Samus” pulled Revan inside when he started to become loud about his suspicions, and offered him some tea to calm down. It turns out that this was not Samus at all, but Peach in disguise as Samus. The group entered the ship upon realizing this, and were told that Peach and Samus switched places based on intel Samus received on Bowser. Apparently, Bowser has been communicating with Ridley, one of Samus’ arch-nemeses, who isn’t even IN the Nexus.
A cutscene showed that Samus was only marginally better at impersonating Peach than Peach was at impersonating Samus… nonetheless, the disguise was holding and Samus was easily able to escape Peach’s cell at will to search for information.
Peach (as Samus) had gotten a communication from Dark Samus, but couldn’t make out what it was saying because she had converted the fuel converter into a tea brewer. Roll and Revan fixed it; Dark Samus had taken Pikachu, and was threatening to blow him up (with contingent Phazon corruption!) if Samus didn’t face it at midnight in Battleground. Alone. Any tricks and the Pikachu gets it!
The group did some prepwork, convinced Peach to change her armor color to orange (“but orange is disgusting! DAISY wears orange!”), and went forth to try and save Pikachu while Peach distracted Dark Samus, before the ruse could be uncovered. Peach (disguised in the Rose-o Armor) faced Dark Samus on a floating platform while the party traveled on the ground below sneaking as best they could. Isabelle spotted one of the Malice Four (Basaquer) waiting in ambush, and successfully used her adorability to get him to reveal himself to the others. A battle ensued on both ground and sky, and Peach was able to keep the disguise up by simply not attacking at all, using taunts and talking to infuriate Dark Samus to the point where she was unable to believe that the person it was facing was not Samus. (It helped that her armor had a reserve Starman, which Dark Samus thought was some advanced shielding technology.)
Roll managed to break away from the fight and eliminate the threat to Pikachu using Ice Man’s weapon to deactivate the bomb attached to the energy cage. The group then finished up on the Malice Four, with Steve’s Final Smash (granted by Isabelle getting the Smash Ball) putting the Four and Dark Samus at a heavy disadvantage. The Four went down, with only Basaquer escaping. Dark Samus fought until Peach’s armor broke, revealing the ruse and pretty much blowing Dark Samus’ mind, setting up for Roll’s Final Smash severely depleting its Phazon reserves. At that point, it fled.
All seemed resolved… but then they turned to the energy cage where Pikachu was being held, and it was being lifted into the sky by the Meowth hot air balloon! PREPARE FOR TROUBLE; the reason for Meowth’s disappearance was now evident as he had smuggled Jessie and James into Smash City. And they tried to steal Pikachu. Again. The group quickly blasted them off, due to Roll hitting Chimecho and James flipping out. Meowth had exited the balloon, and explained to his Smash City allies that he needed Jessie and James around to protect him from “that darn dog”, and that he monitored their communications. They came to steal Pikachu to protect Pikachu from Dark Samus… that’s Meowth’s story and he’s sticking to it.
Everyone met at Peach’s Castle, where Samus and Captain Toad (who extracted Samus by finding an escape tunnel while she fought Bowser) delivered a report; Bowser has the Tome of Eternal Darkness, and Kamek is using it to contact other worlds. He was trying to recruit Ridley, thus proving that Bowser is in fact gearing up for a major plan and making alliances to do so… with the ability to contact any world. Then Roll became irrationally obsessed with Samus’ hair.