Citrusella wandered down to the cafeteria, where she was sure another plate of mushroom and turtle awaited her. Maybe they would change it up today and have mushroom and turtle soup.
As she entered the room and sat down, instead of having a plate of nasty Mario yuck in front of her, someone sat down a plate of fruit.
"Surprise, Citrusella! We went and got you some fruit from your own game!" Nurse Toadstool said.
She shied away from the plate. How could his garden—the garden she thought only he took care of—still have any fruit after all these years? That was the only place watermelons grew in the entire game.
"I can’t eat it," she said, a small bit of fear and a whole lot of confused in her voice.
She shook her head. “I… I can’t.”
Nurse Toadstool seemed to think for a while, until she asked Citrusella to stand up, then she took her by the hand and led her to Dr. Mario’s office for an unscheduled visit. When she left Citrusella in the room, she whispered something to Dr. Mario before quickly departing back to the cafeteria.
"Nurse Toadstool says you were… afraid… of the watermelon we got you. Is that true?"
"No, not really. I just… didn’t want to eat it."
Dr. Mario, knowing the signifigance of watermelon to the young girl, thought for a second before bringing up what he was sure would be a touchy subject.
"Let’s talk about… Walter…"
Her eyebrows shot up. “How about we don’t and say we did?”
He sighs. “Citrusella, I know you have some painful experiences in relation to him, and I think it would be good to talk about them.”
A heartbroken breath escapes her mouth, and her speech begins sounding as if she’s walking on air. “Walter was wonderful… I never had any painful experiences with him… the only one is that one day he just disappeared. Like he ran away or something. I hope it wasn’t something I did…”
Dr. Mario furrowed his brow, slightly taken aback. “…Citrusella… he died.”
Her eyes became wide and scared. She spoke completely seriously. “What?! N-no! He didn’t!”
Dr. Mario sighed, lowering his head. “Yes, he did… he’s been dead for about 15 years…”
"NO!" she screamed. "YOU’RE LYING! He’s not dead! He didn’t die! He wasn’t killed outside his game! I didn’t see a bad guy crush him and give him a permanent game over!"
"…Then how do you know exactly how he died?"
Citrusella squeezed her eyes shut tightly as tears began to pour down her face.
Dr. Mario continued, getting down on her level to speak to her face-to-face. “I know you saw it happen, and I know this is going to be hard for you… You’re going to go through a grieving process, and it’s going to be hard. But everyone here is here for you, and when you get back to Sugar Rush, I’ll make sure more than enough people are there for you, too.”
Dr. Mario let Citrusella continue to cry until she left the room of her own accord.