The Far Wildlands is the fifth chapter of Bug Fables: The Everlasting Sapling. In it, Team Snakemouth, accompanied by Maki, fight through the dangerous Far Grasslands and dreadful Wild Swamplands in order to infiltrate the Wasp Kingdom. It is preceded by Chapter 4: Mysterious Lost Sands and followed by Chapter 6: Assault on Rubber Prison.
After acquiring the missing half of the Ancient Key, Team Snakemouth leaves the Sand Castle, with their long quest seemingly over. All of a sudden, Zasp, noticeably exhausted from battle, arrives in an uncharacteristic panic to alert the team that the Ant Kingdom is currently under attack by the Wasps, and that they must hurry at once.
Once they make it to the Bugaria Outskirts, Zasp is relieved to see that the evacuations of Ant Kingdom City were successful. He advises the team to go check on the Queen while he goes looking for Mothiva. Kabbu is surprised that Zasp, a Wasp, would fight others of his kind, but Zasp says he’s not anything like those “pests,” and disappears.
The team is shocked to see the town which had accepted them suffer an invasion so severe. Smoke is everywhere, defeated ant guards lay exhausted, and a deep red overshadows the entire kingdom, making it truly look like a war zone.
In the throne room, the Wasp King, wielding a mighty axe, lands a finishing blow on the highest-ranking ant guard, Zaryant, the last of the Queen’s defenses. Team Snakemouth bursts in to save the Queen. Vi throws her Beemerang at the Wasp King and Leif uses his ice magic, however, the king expertly dodges these attacks from behind.
The king turns around, ready to fight the team, and does not care for their names, as he believes he’ll forget as soon as he defeats them. The team is able to fight the king for a short while, but then he unleashes an overwhelmingly powerful fire spell which defeats Team Snakemouth instantly. Now weakened from battle, Leif is violently struck by the Wasp King’s axe, and drops the Other Ancient Half, which the king steals.
Before he is able to attack the Queen, the Wasp King is pushed back by Maki, who arrives just in time to drop down from the ceiling and deliver a harsh downward strike. The Queen tells Maki that he is very late to arrive, which Maki says is because his mission took much longer than expected. Satisfied with the one artifact he managed to steal, the Wasp King ends the invasion and leaves, vowing to come back for the rest of the artifacts at a later time.
The team is thankful that Maki saved them, as they thought this really was the end. Kina rushes into the room, happy to see her brother is safe. While everyone is glad the invasion is over, the Queen is still determined to recover the artifact as soon as possible. Leif and Maki believe that since all the other artifacts haven’t yet been stolen, they should spend their time instead building up their defenses in the kingdom.
The Queen completely disagrees, as the artifact the Wasp King had stolen was half of the Ancient Key, which likely can produce immense energy if harnessed correctly like the first half of the Ancient Key, which was used to power the entire Honey Factory. If put to a militaristic purpose, the next invasion could be even more devastating. The Queen predicts the wasps retreated north, back to the Far Grasslands, which are accessible by going past the border east of Defiant Root. Kabbu is startled at first, but then quickly accepts the mission.
Maki plans to accompany the team into the Far Grasslands, along with his sister Kina, as well as Yin, who the team has never met before. Zaryant gives the team 50 berries in war funds, and the Queen orders Team Maki and Team Snakemouth to hastily retrieve the artifact. Kabbu thinks to himself that he is ready to return, and that with Maki, he’ll have even better chances.
Maki, Kina, and a squishy little caterpillar greet the team after they make it to the border. The caterpillar is revealed to be Yin, who Maki found while he was spying on the wasps, and has still not become a Moth, which fascinates Maki. Kina is not so fond of Yin, however, and hopes Yin doesn’t slow the mission down.
Once they enter the Far Grasslands, Maki requests that Kabbu serves as a guide, as he is from the north, and has more familiarity with this environment. Kabbu accepts, and says that he has been meaning to return to the wretched Far Grasslands. He does not recommend they head north, as the wasps have walls blocking them from passage, and instead thinks they should head through the Wild Swamplands to the east, which is full of hideous monsters, wild tribes, and thick waters.
Maki takes Kabbu’s words to heart when he tells Kina to stay behind and protect Yin. Kina explodes in anger, and says Maki is always running off on missions without her, but nevertheless, she agrees to protect Yin for her brother. Kabbu says that while he has been here before, the area is constantly changing, so he doesn’t know what could be up ahead.
Maki and the team venture through the jungle-like, lush landscape and finally reach the swamp to the east. The swamp has twisted purple vegetation and dense air, but the team has no other choice, as it is the only way into the Wasp Kingdom.
Maki informs the team that while he was scouting earlier, he had noticed a few structural weaknesses in the walls of the Wasp Kingdom, which they should be able to exploit once they make it on the other side of the swamp.
On their way, the team is ambushed by a group of Leafbugs, who don’t speak Bugnish, making it impossible to talk them out of fighting. Soon enough, the Leafbugs are defeated, and run away in fear. Kabbu recommends the team take a non-confrontational approach, as they are already trespassing on Leafbug territory.
As they are all crossing a bridge, Maki notices some Leafbugs on the other side, who destroy the bridge, causing everyone to fall. Vi is able to fly, but not for long, as a Leafbug Archer shoots her with an arrow, which sends her plummeting.
Team Snakemouth all landed in the same spot, but Maki landed on a distant ledge, injuring his leg. Vi asks Maki if he’d want her to fly over there, but Maki says Kabbu and Leif should come too, and that he can wait.
The team tries to move forward, but are blocked by a huge cluster of boulders. Kabbu, enraged, charges with his horn and knocks all the rocks aside, letting the team pass. Vi and Leif are amazed by his strength, which he says he summoned by thinking about the time he spent in the swamp alone and helpless.
Kabbu’s friends notice something is off about him, and ask why he seems so hopeless. Kabbu decides to finally tell his friends the truth. Back in his hometown, he says, the swamp is widely regarded as a graveyard of naive explorers.
Despite all warnings, Kabbu, his master, and his friend named Bit entered the swamp, as they wanted to see the vast and beautiful lands of Bugaria. Kabbu was the only one who escaped alive, even though he was the rookie, because of the sacrifices his friends made. Kabbu wanted to start a new life in Bugaria, but he finds himself once again in the Wild Swamplands, haunted by his past.
Vi and Leif reassure Kabbu that they will make it through the swamp safely, but Kabbu thinks to himself that merely crossing the swamp is not enough. Vi and Leif promise that they will all protect each other, and Kabbu thanks them. At the end of this, Kabbu gains the Horn Dash field skill and the Dash Through skill.
As Team Snakemouth ventures deeper into the Wild Swamplands, Kabbu hears something and tells everyone to be silent. An ominous shadow is seen passing through the grass. Once it is gone, Kabbu notes its shape, which he recognizes as the same monster which took his friends from him. Leif says that it seems to not have noticed them, and they should simply avoid it, but Kabbu thinks to himself that they should not.
The team eventually finds Maki, who is still recovering from leg injury, which he says was just a light bruise, and that he should be able to stand up soon. Maki tells the team to be cautious as they move ahead, as something just doesn’t feel right. Kabbu appears to be trembling, as if he knows what to expect. Maki advises Kabbu not to be reckless. Leif tells Maki they can clear the enemies in the area up ahead for him.
They see a group of Leafbugs again, ready to fight, however, a tremor scares the Leafbugs. A gigantic, spiked, crimson beast pushes the Leafbugs aside and stands in the team’s way. Kabbu shouts at the beast, angry about the friends it took away from him. Leif recommends that they should retreat, as this beast is unlike anything they’ve seen before, but Kabbu insists on fighting the beast, so that it can face justice.
Team Snakemouth appears to be succeeding in battle against the horrible beast, and it is nearly dead, but it suddenly rams into Vi and Leif, causing both to collapse. It rams into Kabbu last, but Kabbu, while hit harshly, does not fall. He realizes that he may lose his friends again, this time, all because he wanted revenge, which would tarnish the sacrifice his master and Bit made, so he promises to keep fighting, not for revenge, but to protect his new friends. Kabbu finally kills the beast, saving Vi and Leif’s lives.
Maki is impressed that the team was able to defend the beast, but is angry at Kabbu for endangering the team and the mission. Kabbu wonders if he could have saved his master and Bit long ago if he was strong enough and didn’t run, and apologizes to his friends for being blinded by revenge.
Leif tells Kabbu that they cannot turn back time, and that, even though Kabbu’s old friends are gone, Leif is sure that they are proud of how much Kabbu has grown. Kabbu notes that his master would be scolding him right now, just as Maki is, and Maki accepts his apology.
Maki tells the team that they are very close to the Wasp Kingdom. Because of his injury, Maki will be unable to accompany them into the Wasp Kingdom, but he says he will move on ahead to set up a camp so they can all rest up.
The team meets up with Maki, and Kabbu is glad to be out of the Wild Swamplands now. Vi was stashing some honey which she chooses to share with the team. Kabbu tears up as he is so happy to be able to still make more memories with his friend, and Leif calls him a softie. Maki now expresses his regret that he didn’t make Kabbu a part of his team long ago, seeing as Kabbu has such an incredible bond with Vi and Leif. The team eats, and rests at the camp.
Maki then gives them a briefing on the area ahead, stating that there is a crack in the Wasp Kingdom Hive’s wall, covered by heavy foliage, which the wasps haven’t noticed yet, and can serve as a secret passage. The team must also avoid being spotted, as they will surely be captured, and the mission will fail. Vi compares this to what they did in the Bandit Hideout, but Maki tells her not to underestimate the wasps. Maki says that he will stay at the camp, protecting their exit route.
The team navigates around the Wasp Kingdom Hive’s exterior, eventually finding the crack behind the foliage Maki described, allowing them to sneak inside. Once inside, the team sneaks by ruined homes, all boarded up and in poor condition. It seems that the wasps are so focused on their military might that they’ve let their infrastructure crumble. A Wasp Key allows the team to explore the kingdom further. They come across a prison which holds many Ant Kingdom subjects and dissenting wasps captive.
Past the prison, they find a surprisingly tidy home, belonging to a wasp named Jayde, who wrongfully identifies the team as being the famous Bug Rangers, and she happens to be their number one fan. She believes they are here to save her from the Wasp King, who cares only for fighting. Jayde tells the team that everything’s gone wrong since her kingdom's queen went missing. Kabbu decides to play along, and pretends that they are the Bug Rangers, so she gives them a Wasp Key to help them out, and sells them her delicious stew at a super hero discount.
With Jayde’s Wasp Key, the team is able to head through a tunnel leading into a large royal hall, which is decorated with wasp banners, along with being unusually empty and quiet. The team goes into the throne room, and hear a voice laughing.
Out from behind the throne, the Wasp Kingdom’s highest-ranking general and self-proclaimed crusher of rebellions, General Ultimax, introduces himself. He tells the team that he has been watching their every step, and has been waiting for the right moment to surprise them. Ultimax calls over his troops to fight, to stop the team from disturbing the Wasp King in his chambers. The general and his army are defeated by Team Snakemouth, who advance into the chambers behind the throne room.
In the royal chambers, the team meets Queen Vanessa II, who is being held hostage within her own kingdom. She had lost control over her subjects when the Wasp King took over their minds. She asks the team if they’re here to save her, but Leif honestly tells her they were looking to defeat the Wasp King.
Vanessa tells the team that they won’t be finding the king here, as he left the general in charge a while ago, and went to attack the Ant Kingdom. Kabbu and Leif jump up in surprise when they realize that they were tricked, and after explaining to Vi that there’s no artifact here, she also jumps up in surprise. Vanessa advises them to quickly return to the Ant Kingdom, and accompanies the team.
As they reenter the throne room, they spot Ultimax snickering as he just can’t believe Team Snakemouth fell for the trap. Vanessa calls the general Fuff, which he shouts is not his name, and tells the team that while the first invasion failed, this second one certainly won’t, since the team and Maki are unable to fight for the Queen. Ultimax steps aside, letting the team and Vanessa go past, as he is confident they won’t be able to stop the king. Once they make it back to the camp, the team alerts Maki that they must all head to the Ant Kingdom at once.
- Wild Chomper
- Jumping Spider
- Leafbug Ninja
- Leafbug Archer
- Leafbug Clubber
- The Beast (Boss)
- Wasp Trooper
- Wasp Scout
- Wasp Driller (Mini-boss)
- Wasp Bomber (Mini-boss)
- General Ultimax (Mini-boss)
- Want to Relive Memories...
- Helpers needed at once.
- Help me Get it Back!
- My Mecha Claw