MIDNIGHT WISPS (MNW)
Clock Coliseum (Helarve; ML)
Midnight Bay Circuit (Helarve; M1)
Marble League 2017; Marble League 2018 (Champions); Marble League 2019; Marbula One Season 1; Marble League 2020; Marbula One Season 2; Marble League Winter Special; Marbula One Season 3
The Midnight Wisps hail from the Scandinavian taiga, east of Helarve. The five met on a bus tour to Harva National Park and got into a deep conversation about the upcoming 2016 Marble League. Midway through the walking portion of the tour, they decided to abandon their group, opting to race through the forest instead. To their misfortune, the five were caught trespassing and got banned and fined from the park.
Upon paying off their fine, Wispy, Wespy, Wospy, and Wuspy decided to form a team to train for the following year’s Marble League, which, according to rumors, was taking applicants from around the world. The team’s name was inspired by the renowned Helarve Clock Tower and by the region’s legendary “Willow Wisps”.
The team’s application was accepted in early 2017, much to their surprise. They trained so frequently and so vigorously leading up to their arrival in Knikkegen that summer that they didn’t even know which four teams had prequalified and which new teams would be joining them in an attempt to qualify for the first time. Admittedly, the Wisps did not perform strongly in the Qualifiers. It was only with Wospy’s first-place finish in Funnel Spinning that the team was able to qualify in seventh out of the sixteen teams, but they had done enough. The Midnight Wisps were in the Marble League.
The Midnight Wisps earned a silver medal with Wespy’s performance in the Long Jump after a poor debut in the funnels. A sixth-place finish in the Fidget Spinner Collision event brought the Wisps to fifth place overall, but their performance during the event caused more conflict than celebration: the force of Wispy’s collision with Momomomo caused the latter athlete to suffer a serious injury.
After the event ended, the Wisps tried to reach Team Momo, but the doctors forbade fans and marble athletes from visiting. The team donated money and other resources to Momomomo and the rest of the team for the remainder of the season.
The Midnight Wisps continued to place in the middle of the standings until the Steeplechase, where they earned a bronze medal. Two events later, they pulled an upset over the O’rangers, who had set a new Marble League record in the heats of the Underwater Race, to win their first gold medal. They ended their rookie season in fourth overall, just two points away from an overall podium in Marble League 2017.
It was announced that the Marble League for 2018 would be a brand new Winter Edition, the first of its kind. This gave the Wisps an advantage. They trained in the cold and would roll in the cold. They were picked to be in Group B, and their qualifiers were pretty successful and consistent, very much unlike their 2017 Qualifiers. However, the Kobalts came just one point away from besting the Wisps in fourth, who qualified by one point, the slimmest margin possible.
Beginning Marble League 2018 with two bronzes in four events, the Midnight Wisps’ midseason sowed doubt in the team. But by losing out on one “Snow Point” to the Speeders for silver, the Wisps earned their third bronze in Event 7. The Wisps were now down on the leaderboard by 21, and after a few more events, by just 22.
Event 11 was Ice Hockey, which the Wisps claimed they had been training for all season. With only one loss in the entire event, they shut out the Minty Maniacs to win gold and rise to fourth in the standings. Ten teams had the chance to win the championship, the largest number at the time heading into the final event. But heading into the final, it became clear that if the Wisps wanted to win, they needed to beat the Speeders. Wispy, a marble that had never podiumed had the opportunity of a lifetime, and they executed on that chance.
With two gold medals in the final two events, the Midnight Wisps had completed one of the most incredible championship wins ever. They beat the Speeders by one point, the closest margin possible. After an outstanding rookie season, they showed that they were willing to better themselves, that they were willing to take their best opportunity when it presented itself. There was never a moment when they gave up. They fought hard knowing that there was still a chance, and they achieved a “Midnight Miracle” like no other to win Marble League 2018.
Their victory tour around the world started and ended in Harva due to popular demand from fans, with a surprise appearance by Willow Wisps themselves gathering around the Helarve Clock Tower to celebrate their homecoming. Two months passed before the Midnight Wisps were able to reclaim their private life and begin training for Marble League 2019. The Friendly Round for the 2019 Marble League, which featured the four auto-qualified teams, fared better for the team than their offseason appearances. The team finished in third place overall and entered the main tournament as the team to beat.
After a rough start to their season, including a disqualification in the Relay, the team finally earned their first gold medal in Block Pushing, which would become known as their forte in the Marble League. Wuspy came back as strongly as they could in Hurdles and earned the Wisps a second gold medal with a time of 8.744 seconds. But the team’s only saving grace for the rest of the season was their silver medal in Rafting. In the end, the Midnight Wisps finished in tenth place with 128 points, a place which they had been able to rise out of in previous games. It was simply not to be in 2019.
Remembering the hope and inspiration the athletes had at the beginning of their formation helped the team regain the motivation to give their all to training. But that wasn’t all that was accomplished the night they were allowed back to Harva National Park. Unbeknownst to the athletes, Wyspy was paying close attention to the race between the members. The coach had recently received news of Marbula One and decided to test which athletes would be the best for such a competition. Because Wispy and Wospy were the fastest on the team, they were selected to represent the Midnight Wisps in Marbula One, as “Threat Level Wisp” and “Ghost Rider” respectively.
The Wisps practiced on their track in Helarve. The track, Midnight Bay, offered perfect views of the shore and incorporated the famous Helarve Clock Tower in the middle of the track, as well as a floodlit tunnel and an invisible bridge. Wispy and Wospy would run practice laps leading up to the first race at the Savage Speedway. It allowed the Wisps to prepare for what was to come, as the rumor had it that it was one of the hardest tracks in all of Marblearth. Their finish in the middle there was only the beginning of the Wisps’ struggles. After starting at the O’raceway on pole position, on the third lap, Wospy fell off the conveyor belt, becoming stranded at the bottom!
As marbles roared past, Rapidly noticed Wospy, slowed their speed, and changed direction, bumping Wospy into motion again. Wospy was surprised to find themselves rolling, but they recovered as quickly as they could, pushing through the shock and pain of the fall to finish the race. Soon after came Wospy’s turn to show off their renewed determination at the Hivedrive, qualifying in fourth. Come the race, Wospy would get third, earning the Wisps their first Marbula One medal! After a difficult second half, the Midnight Wisps finished twelfth in the final standings, with only 34 points.
The Wisps had received another poor finish, and yet something was different this time. Instead of feeling down and mournful, the team was more motivated than ever! Rapidly’s help with Wopsy had meant a lot to not only Wospy but the team as a whole.
A few months later, the Wisps focused on getting back in shape for Marble League 2020. Winning Block Pushing, they finished ninth overall and qualified. Wuspy’s belief that the Wisps needed “a strong start” was evident in their team’s Balancing performance: 353, just two centimeters shy of the Raspberry Racers ahead of them in second. Wuspy got a silver out of Hurdles and shared the moment with the Raspberry Racers’ gold medalist, Ruzzy, without any hard feelings.
The twenty points from their Hurdles silver sent the Midnight Wisps back in the top five before the event they had been waiting for: Block Pushing. After winning the event last season and having the best score in the qualifiers, the Wisps came in very confident. Coach Wyspy went all out and instructed the Wisps to perform the “Iron Willow” in the first run. It was an all-in formation and was a high-risk, high reward. The move paid off, because not only did the Wisps get the best score, they obliterated the record the O’rangers had from 2017 with a whopping 85.8 centimeters! That score was more than enough for a gold medal.
After Wospy got a decent performance in the Triathlon, finishing sixth, the Midnight Wisps were in second place at the halfway point. Wespy and Wispy united as a duo for the Black Hole Funnel, earning a silver medal after both of our runs were above 45 seconds. In the Team Aquathlon, the Midnight Wisps held off the Savage Speeders in one of the closest finishes in Marble League history, earning their fifth medal and second gold, tying their medal total from 2018.
With just the Marathon to go after a few more events, the Wisps were in third place, sixteen points behind the Speeders. Wyspy sent Wospy for the finale, who finished in eighth place, leading to the Wisps not only losing the title to the Savage Speeders but losing out on the podium altogether. Their overall fourth place in Marble League 2020 with 194 points was commendable but left the Wisps devastated.
It wasn’t all doom and gloom for the Wisps though, as when they got back to Helarve they were escorted to Harva National Park. When they got there, a crowd of marbles came to greet them to announce that the park was being renamed “Midnight Hollow National Park” in dedication to the team.
While preparing to host the Midnight Melee, a tournament that would be the first in Harva, Wyspy received an invitation for Marbula One Season 2. While it wouldn’t be for another few weeks, the Wisps believed that their tournament would give them a nice warm-up before the season begins. Taking place inside the Clock Coliseum, built to host a Marble League, the Wisps invited fifteen other teams to join them. Atop the podium, the Midnight Wisps stood triumphant over Team Plasma and the Pumpkin Patch, winning the league by 25 points. There was no trophy given out, but rather, a sense of pride and accomplishment. It was not a Marble League championship, but it still felt good for the Wisps, who knew the biggest success of the tournament was not winning it outright.
After the tournament, it was time to head back to the track for the second season of Marbula One. At the halfway point, the Midnight Wisps sat in twelfth overall with 29 points, all of them coming from Wispy, one of them being from a repeat pole position for the Wisps at the O’raceway.
With the announcement of the Marble League Winter Special, the Midnight Wisps looked forward to competing on snow and ice for the first time since their championship three years prior. The entire team traveled to the Himarblelaya Mountains on a quest to win a winter league again, establishing themselves as the rulers of the cold. The previous champions of winter finished the Special in twelfth overall, with no medals to their name.
At Palette Park during the second half of Marbula One, Wospy qualified in sixteenth…but suddenly climbed the table late in the race, and got to second place behind Speedy. Overtaking Speedy on Lap 16, the two dueled for the rest of the race, with Wospy getting the upper hand at the chequered flag by nine-hundredths of a second. The clock had struck midnight at Palette Park because Wospy had turned it all around and won a Marbula One race for the first time!
The Wisps finished the season in ninth with one gold to their credit. Wispy would finish the individual championship in 11th, compared to Wospy’s 23rd.
To kick off their preparations for Marble League 2021, Wispy got a head start in Felynia after being invited to the official Practice Race. Things looked good early on, but taking the upper path at the first split sent Wispy down the table and into 21st at the end of the race. Their work would be cut out when they were drawn in Group A, alongside six other top-tier teams from 2020, four Showdown teams, including the runners-up Jungle Jumpers, and the newly reformed Gliding Glaciers. To the distress of the Wisps, Block Pushing was pulled from Qualifiers at the last second and replaced by the Wave. Regardless, they hoped to maintain their status as one of the elite teams, and qualify for their fifth Marble League.
It was not to be in 2021. Despite earning a silver in the Relay, the Wisps’ subpar results in the other events led them to finish eighth out of the 12 teams in Group A. They would miss their first Marble League in team history, and be relegated to the 2021 Showdown.
Block Pushing would be one of the Showdown’s eight events in 2021, practically guaranteeing the Wisps at least one gold. Fans looked to the team as one to beat as they gathered in the stands in anticipation. Some even claimed they had seen Willow Wisps among the frieze of the Felynia Coliseum. Yet besides the Wisps’ record-breaking gold in Block Pushing, their middling performances in other events pit the team in last heading into the final two events. Although Wispy and Wuspy, the latter earning bronze in Marblocross, carried the team out of the basement, they only finished tenth overall with two medals and 42 points.
Finding that the duo to close out the 2021 Showdown worked well together, Coach Wyspy submitted both Wuspy, “The Speed of Night” and Wispy to compete in Season 3 of Marbula One.
Special thanks to Ghostly, Jaiden, Nordique Whaler, and Stynth for helping craft the lore of the Midnight Wisps.