Esper: The Story of Tritoch Chapter 1
By Annie Felis
Slowly the stars came out over the small village that was nestled in a forgotten valley on a hidden continent. The residents all entertained themselves in after-dinner activities as usual...although the residents themselves were anything but usual. While seemingly human as they sat in their homes or sat gazing at the stars, they were all blessed, or even cursed, with powers and lifespans nearly godlike.
Although one particular one of these individuals was acting anything but godlike. She frowned and looked at her host with icy blue eyes that were framed by pale indigo hair. "You're bluffing."
The man she fixed her intent stare on gave a small smirk, and scratched at his multicolor hair. "Am I now? You gonna risk it all on a hunch?" His own firey red eyes locked with her cool blue ones.
"Damn. Fine.....I fold." She threw down her cards in disgust. "All right, show me your magnificent hand.
Her opponent grinned triumphantly, and put down his cards for all at the table to see. There was a groan from the other players that had folded their hands long before Shiva did. The red-eyed man grinned maliciously. "A pair of fours and the rest is a load of crap. Thank you very much ladies and gentlemen." he pulled their bets towards his growing pile.
A woman with dark brown hair sighed. "See, now that's why I don't play against you Tri....you're too good at keeping a straight face."
Tritoch smiled at her. "Would you believe that I learned how to bluff properly from the legendary Setzer Gabianni?"
She frowned. "Whom?"
Shiva sighed. "Yuri never met Setzer, remember?" She turned to the slightly-confused girl. "He was a netorious gambler from about a millenia ago. Although why he would want to talk to Tritoch is beyond me."
"Could of been worse..." Ifrit growled. "He could of spent some time with Sabin. Great guy, if you get past the lack of brains."
Yuri looked at her Esper companions, having becoming an Esper herself recently. "You've all known a lot of famous people in history, didn't you?"
Shiva toyed with a few cards, trying to make a small structure out of them. "Yeah....I've been around for quite a while....so has Iffie. We've both seen and done it all, haven't we dear?"
Ifrit nodded and grinned, showing sharp teeth.
Tritoch stacked his newly-obtained money into neat piles. "I've done a lot too....known some people, been a lotta places..."
"Yeah?" Shiva looked sly. "If you've done so damn much, why is it you've never told me about it?"
"Or me." Ifrit added. "I don't even think he tells Bahamut about his experiences."
"Nobody. I've told nobody, since it's my life." Tritoch glanced at Shiva, who was still looking at him with a somewhat irritating expression. "Don't look at me like that....I don't think you guys would want to hear about my stupid life."
Yuri lightly touched his arm. "I'd like to know. If I'm going to be here with you for the next several millenia, I'd like to know something if anything about you."
"Yeah, c'mon Tri..." Ifrit badgered. "share a little, will ya?"
Tritoch sighed, and looked at his companions. "...fine....but not tonight. It'd take too long, and I wouldn't get very far."
"So use that new computer we got you....you have it for a reason, and that's not to play StarCraft. Write an autobiography, Tri....and be sure to make it good. I'm expecting a feel-good story with some suspense, action, a little romance and even a happy ending."
"...too bad, because you're getting what you're getting. And don't pretend to be my editor again...or you'll get a Fire3 in the face."
SECTION ONE: Youth
Chapter One: The transformation
First off, I'd just like to say that this is a stupid idea. If Shiva bothering me about this stupid project wasn't bad enough, she went up to Bahamut and asked him about it. So now Bahamut thinks that this is an absolutely wonderful idea, and he actually ordered me to start writing right away. Apparently my normal duties to him can wait...all of the damn village is waiting for the release of "Tritoch the Magnificient!!" in trade paperback. If it wasn't for Yuri's persistance with this task that I'm undertaking, I seriously wouldn't do it. For some reason, Yuri always gets me to listen. I guess I have a soft spot for cute little women with big blue eyes (that does NOT include you, Shiva!).
I have no idea how many months or even years it'll take for me to write this autobiography of mine, and I can't guarantee a ripping, entertaining story (it's my life, not a movie). But since Bahamut persisited, Shiva and Ifrit persisited.....even Fenrir, Ayame, Xain and even Sephiroth persisited (I wish all of you would just mind your own business...), I'm sitting here at this computer writing. Whoop-de-friggin-do. Oh, and by the way....since this is my story, I'm telling it how I want to tell it; this includes sarchastic comments and small interjections every once in a while. Anyway, I probably should start out.
I was born in a reasonably-sized town of nearly a thousand people (the world was just recovering from the aftermath of ExDeath and Mu, so the population of the world dropped, and technology went a bit backwards for a while). I had a reasonbly-sized family....me being the third of three children (hence my name being "Tritoch", which in that time meant "the third one"), although that number dropped seriously because of a wave of pneumonia that passed through. My two older sisters, whom were identical twins, died when they were seven, and I was five. The illness affected my vision, and I could barely see out of my left eye because of it. Luckily, that changed later on....but I'm getting ahead of myself here.
My father always went to work in the mines (the town would eventually become Narshe....but at the time, it was named differently), and my mother would head to the fields every day, since we lived in a communal farming community. It was a good place to be a kid....plenty of places to hide or play "war" or build forts....great places to swim or catch bugs, and if there was anything that Nartch (the name of the town at the time) had, it was plenty of kids. A lot of them were older than me, but a few of them were within my age range.
I usually played with the kid next door and his sister. The boy was named Fenrir, and the little girl was named Leana. Fenrir was a wild boy three years younger than me, and Leana was seven years behind me. That meant that whenever Fenrir and I wanted to go play, his mother would saddle him with the responsibilty of taking his little sister with....and thus completely ruining our fun. Do you have any idea how hard it is to play "pirates" when a three-year-old keeps trying to take your ship apart? At one point I had the idea to ditch Leana when she wasn't looking. I don't exactly remember what we did, but the result was a crying four-year-old sitting in the mud in the middle of the road. When my parents and Fenrir's mother found out, we were in serious trouble. My reasoning was that there was no harm done...Leana had only gotten a little dirty, and little kids always get dirty anyway. My mother didn't seem to share my views.
A word to the wise....never EVER try to get out of trouble by debating the subject with your parents. No matter what happened, and no matter what views you take, and even if you KNOW that you did nothing wrong, you're guilty as sin. Simple as that. So just take the blame and shut your mouth.
So both I and Fenrir were grounded, although since the whole ordeal was my idea, I was given hard time in my bedroom for a bit longer than Fenrir was. I usually got grounded as a child, since I was such a pain in the neck....sometimes I wonder why my parents didn't give up on me totally. You may of noticed that now I'm somewhat obedient when following orders from Bahamut. This is because I finally got tired of suffering the repercussions for ignoring or spurring those in charge. I'm a good boy now.
Anyway, it was somewhere in the second week of my "Detention", and Fenrir was already off the hook. He stopped by my house midmorning looking for me. Luckily, I was the one who answered the door.
"What are you doing here?" I said quietly, so my mother wouldn't hear.
"I'm here to talk to you, obviously." Even then, Fenrir was a wiseass. "Look, can you come out and play?"
I shook my head. "I don't think my mom will let me....she's still mad at me, I think."
"Aww...try being nice to her....maybe she'll let you off the hook. Have you been doing chores around the house for her?"
I was somewhat confused by this, since in my house you ALWAYS had to do chores. No chores, no meals....it was as simple as that. I later learned that Fenrir never had to do anything other than sit around and look cute. He and his sister were always spoiled rotten. I think that's why he has the attitude he currently owns.
Sorry Fenrir....but you know you deserved that.
"Tri, who's at the door?" I heard my mother tromping down the stairs. My mother wasn't a big woman, but she sure sounded like one when she walked.
"It's uh.....um..." I turned to Fenrir. "What do I tell her? If she finds out you're here I can get in big trouble."
Fenrir shot me that annoying grin of his. "Tell her the truth." He looked at something behind me. "Tell her right now, while your at it."
"That's right, Tritoch....please explain what he's doing here." I turned to see my mother looking down at me with a calm expression that was nearly as annoying as Fenrir's jovial one. "Aren't you supposed to stay away from him?"
Reasoning didn't seem to work last time, so maybe the truth would this time. "He came over to talk to me, and see if I was un-grounded yet. He didn't come to cause any trouble."
My mother frowned. "Where Fenrir goes, trouble follows."
Fenrir shuffled his feet. "I don't deny it, ma'am."
I looked up at her. "Mom, I'm telling the truth. He didn't have anything bad in mind...at least I hope I didn't...and if you really want, I'll send him on his way."
She crossed her arms and leaned against the doorframe. "Good idea. Run along, Fenrir."
"And take Tritoch with you. He's been cooped up in here long enough, I think."
Fenrir saluted military-style, clicking his heels together. "Sir, yes sir...er....ma'am!"
I broke into a grin and ran after Fenrir, who had already took off. "Thanks mom! I really mean it!"
"Just be home in time for dinner!" She called after me. Like most mothers, mine was overly......"mom-ish".
I swung my stick fearlessly, and adjusted my imaginary conical helmet. "I shall slay thee, vile fiend!" I frowned, and stopped swinging my psuedo-sword. "What are you supposed to be, anyway?"
Fenrir was crouching and baring his teeth at me. "Me? I'm a huge grey wolf....and I eat people for fun, and freeze 'em with magic for even more fun." He stopped baring his teeth. "What are you supposed to be, a hero?"
He shook his head. "That won't do....you gotta be something cool....something that can stand up to the bloodthirsty ice wolf."
I thought for a moment. "A dragon?"
"That's been done...something cooler."
I dug at the bottom of my creativity, and arranged my hands into claws. "I'm tall....really tall. And I have a beak like gryphon....and feathers and wings like one....but I'm not one. I have the body of...of...a snake! Yeah...and um....four arms! And I shoot big nasty energy beams from my mouth!"
Fenrir looked at me strangely, his wolf nearly forgotten. "Tri....that's just weird."
"It's not weird! At least it's more creative than a big wolf that eats people!"
"Nuh-uh! A wolf that can turn people to ice is the best! I bet all your...snakey thing does is sleep all day."
"I'll show you what it does! En garde!" I lunged at him, knocking him over. We rolled in the dirt, him pretending to bite, me pretending to slash with my four claws and beak. Pretty soon, we jumped back from each other, breathing hard.
"So....that's what your wyvern snake thingy does...." Fenrir said.
"Your wolf isn't too bad, either...although what happened to the magic? You didn't try to freeze me."
"Yeah well....he only freezes an' eats people....not snakey guys with wings."
"Yeah, I guess that's fair. Although I still don't know what the snakey guy is....I just hope that if there is something like that in real life, I never run into it....or a ice wolf, either. Right Fenrir?" I looked at him, but he was staring at something in the distance, behind me. "Fenrir?" I could see his hands were clearly trembling. I turned to look, wondering if this was just a little game of his.
It wasn't. Bands of multicolor light flew above and through the town, rushing through trees and building, catching fire to most of what they touched, if they didn't explode at first. Panic erupted in the streets, people ran from house to street, off the street into houses....some with chocobos, some carrying children, all of it chaotic. But what my gaze was fixed on wasn't the magical lights or the people getting wiped out by them, it was on the two figures that stood on either side of the town. They were immense, female, and both dressed in armor. I had heard of the Goddesses doing war, but I never imagined that they would do it here.
I saw Fenrir run past me, towards our houses on the outskirts of town. I ran after him. "Fenrir, no! Stay away from there!"
He kept running, not listening to my pleas to stay back. I don't remember how long it took for us to get to my backyard, but I do clearly remember what happened as we reached it. Fenrir was still running, towards his house, and I was reaching out to grab his arm. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see one of the Goddesses raise her arm to let out another blast of magical energy. I opened my mouth to scream a warning, but it was drowned out by the sound of millions of timbers being wrenched apart. A brilliant light shot through the city just as I grabbed onto Fenrir, eradicating all that it touched. I don't know how we escaped death by being touched by that blast of energy that the Goddess Doom shot, but somehow it sent us both flying back behind a wagon, which shielded us from the flying shrapnel and debris. We clung to each other, and I could hear Fenrir crying. I don't know if I was crying as well, but odds are I was. I don't know how long we stayed there behind that wagon, but it was long after the lights had ended silence had taken over. I felt pain in my body, but it was nothing to the pain in my mind. I knew what I would see when I looked at the town.
Fenrir raised his face, and maybe it was a trick of the light, but his hair seemed almost silver instead of its normal dusty-brown. His eyes were red from crying. "I....think it's over." He then looked at me. "Your hair....it's....!!"
"Your hair looks silver. I bet mine looks funny too because of all that magicky stuff. C'mon, we've got to see if anybody's left." The two of us clambered up from behind the wagon, and took in our surroundings. Where the town of Nartch once stood, there was just heaps of burning timbers and charred skeletons in the streets, of both humans and chocobos. We stood there numbly, not knowing how to respond, and then I heard him crying again.
"They're all gone, Tri..." he sobbed. "All of them....my family, your family. What are we gonna do?"
I shook my head, not knowing how to respond. Amazingly, I was fairly calm at this point. "I don't know." I suddenly felt a sharp pain in my legs, like they were being run over by a herd of animals. I fell to my knees, crying out in pain. "What's....wrong with my legs?" I looked up at Fenrir, and gasped. My friend's face was beginning to change. His eyes were no longer brown, but had settled into a deep gold color. His face was covered in silver fur that sprouted as I watched, and his ears looked like those of a wolf's. I screamed. "Your face! Your ears! Look!"
Fenrir touched at his face, and made whimpering sounds....not like that of a small boy, but more like a puppy. He jabbered something, but I couldn't understand him because the pain in my legs became so intense I couldn't focus on anything else. I fell to my side, crying out from the pain, since it felt as if my legs were being ripped apart. Then it suddenly stopped, and I lay gasping in the dirt from the shock of it. I heard Fenrir scream again, and looked down at my legs. My legs were gone...a long snakelike tail covered in blue and green feathers was in their place. I looked up at Fenrir with tear-blurred vision. "I can't move Fenrir...I can't walk! Please, help me!"
He backed away from me, his features becoming more lupine by the minute. He continued to blubber and jabber meaninglessly as he took steps away from me. I reached towards him, pulling myself forward with my other arm. "Please! You have to help me!"
He tripped over something as he walked away from me, and then scrabbled backwards like a crab. "Y-you stay away from me Tri! Just get away!!" He managed to get to his feet and ran off, howling like a young wolf pup as he ran. I tried to follow him, pulling myself forward with my arms, trying to move my tail in any way that would help. It was no use, I was simply too slow, and soon he disappeared over the horizon. I collapsed in the dirt and started sobbing.
I was alone.
Go To Chapter 2
Return To FF6 Fanfic