It was at one of the houses where a large, blue vortex opened.
Inside, a young woman sighed angrily as she said out loud, "What do you mean, Angela can't make it to rehearsal?"
On the wall, a telephone speaker replied, "She went to the doctor this afternoon. Turns out she has strep throat and she has to stay in the hospital, quarantined. Speaking of which, are you okay?"
"I haven't caught it yet, if that's what you mean. Now what are we gonna do without a flute player?"
Before the person on the other end of the phone could reply, the outdoors became lit in a bright blue light and the woman heard the wind howl rather loudly. A couple of seconds later, she heard someone yelling before the blue light vanished with a bang.
"Hey, what's going on over there?"
She said quickly, "I'll call you back," and pressed a button on the telephone, grabbing her coat.
Outside, she saw someone lying in the snow and a shining metallic item a short distance away.
She ran to the person and tried to lift him off of the ground and onto his feet.
"Okey dokey," she said, "Let's get you inside before you freeze...whoever you are."
"My sword--" she heard him mutter.
"I'll get it in a minute. You're going inside," she replied in a firmer voice and said, "Come on now, one foot in front of the other..."
Somehow, the two managed to get inside the house before the man passed out.
Ultimecia looked into a wavering image of Ghaleon working some of his mind control on two of the women: the blue haired one he called "Althena" and the red-haired one, Elhaym.
This is so irritating, she thought, instead of just working on their minds, we should be going after the last free Musia, or hunting that man from Zenogias. He might have landed in a more primitive world, but when Ghaleon described him, I got this sick feeling in my gut.
She waved a hand, causing the wavering image to disappear.
"Hmph," she said out loud and walked off.
He found himself standing in complete darkness as a strange voice echoed.
"Who are you? How do you know me?" he asked.
Who we are does not matter, a familiar voice replied.
Before him, the image of Elhaym Van Houten appeared.
"You met Ghaleon of Lunar," she replied, though her mouth wasn't moving, "He has captured five of us. There's one left, but she hasn't awakened yet."
"What do you mean?" he asked.
Elly vanished and a woman with extremely long arms and a thorn-shaped stump in place of legs wearing a strangely shredded red dress appeared in her place.
"This unawakened human...are you sure he's the one?" she asked, carefully tapping a fingernail against her chin.
"He'll arise soon," a third female, this one dressed all in black with a strange, horned hat, stepped from the darkness and replied, "I sense the powers from all our worlds inside him. Zenogias, Persona, Evolution, Lunar...all of them. Don't worry, Eve. He's the chosen one, all right."
"He had better be, Victoria. Ghaleon's partner is just as evil as he is, if not worse."
"What are you saying? The chosen one for what?" Citan asked, getting more confused by the minute.
A young girl with long blue hair faded in, saying, "It's worse. He and Ultimecia think that one of us has the Ultimate Power. If he's right, all of the multiverse is in great danger."
"What is going on? Ultimate Power? What am I chosen for?" Citan asked and started to feel as if he were disappearing.
Elly reappeared and said, "No need to know for now. Remember this: You must protect the last free Musia...the Musia of Earth..."
The first thing Citan could hear when he awoke was someone humming quietly and he smelled something rather good cooking close by. He tried to sit up, but he groaned loudly as a result, and found himself covered in thick blankets.
"Easy there," the young woman that was humming said and placed a firm hand on his arm, "You've had quite a trip to here. Good thing you landed in the snow and not the cement."
His jaw dropped as he looked at the person that had run in front of him. Except for the clothes, the young woman looked exactly like...
"Yui?" he asked weakly.
She laughed a little and said, "No, I'm not Yui. You hit your head on a brick, but I didn't see any wounds. Now, sit up slowly."
He looked at her expression as he complied, saying, "I am a doctor."
"I don't doubt it. You'll understand my next statement, then. Say your name, please," she replied kindly.
He nodded, wincing a little and said, "Citan. Citan Uzuki."
She replied, "Just as I thought," then they heard something that was about to boil over.
"Ohh, no! The cassarole's not gonna boil over on me this time!"
He remained still while she turned something in a room that looked like a kitchen, then returned. The noise had stopped.
"Sorry about that," she said sheepishly.
"What did you mean, just as you thought?" he asked her.
"Well, I, uh...I recognized you. Oh, boy, this is going to take some explaining," she replied and sat down in a chair.
"First, where am I?" he asked.
"Well, you're definitely not on your home world anymore. You're on Earth. As far as what town...this is the downtown area of Claytonville, in the state of Missouri," she replied, "and as far as how I recognized you, well....since you're still sitting, you should listen to this..."
After a few minutes of explaining on the young woman's part, Citan looked a bit surprised, but she guessed that it was more than that.
"From what you were able to explain...I have landed in another dimension, one where my world is only a game," he said, trying to summarize.
"I more think of your world and the others in the games as part of this universe....or maybe a multiverse," she replied with a nod, "Though that thinking isn't too popular around here."
"Apparently not...uh, I forgot to ask your name."
She turned red and said, "Me and my manners. I'm Deindra...Deindra Treis. Everyone just calls me Dena, though."
At that, the statement from Midori popped into his mind, "The only ones left are Althena and Dena...as well as Elhaym."
"Are you okay?" Dena asked just as a loud, hi-pitched buzzer sounded.
"What was that?" Citan asked.
"Oh, the dinger? That was the timer on the microwave oven. Dinner's ready, do you want some?"
"I may as well," he replied and waited as she put something that consisted of meat, strangely curved pasta, peas and a type of sauce on two plates, then gave one of them and a fork to him.
"Hmmm...this is quite good," he told her after a few bites, "What is this you cooked?"
Dena grinned and said, "Cheesy Tuna Cassarole, specialty of the house...so to speak. So tell me, Citan...what brought you here to Earth?"
Elly looked at the gathering of women before her, suddenly feeling rather tired.
"For a dungeon, they're certainly using a lavish room," The strangely...deformed woman said, floating about the room.
"Uh....Eve," she asked, "Why do you look like...that?"
"What do you mean by that, girl?"
"I've seen a lot of mutants where I came from, but none looked quite like your mutation," she replied.
Eve twirled around, saying angrily, "Mutation? Elhaym, this is not a mutation. This was the initial form when I awoke in an opera singer. Although," she sighed, sounding as if she were admitting Elly's point, "before I was taken from my home, I did look much more like a human."
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to offend."
The blue haired woman asked, "Are you two feeling rather weary all of a sudden?"
"Actually, Althena," Eve replied, "I do."
"My name is not Althena, it's Luna."
Victoria mused, "Odd...those two called you Althena of Lunar."
"That's a long story."
"Hold on," Elly suddenly said, "Does the tiredness have to do with that dream we had...? About us surrounding and talking about Citan?"
Eve's head snapped up as she asked, "Citan....is that the male human's name? I remember him. Quite handsome...for his species."
Althena hmmed and said, "Why didn't Ghaleon's mind control work?"
"I don't know," Elly replied, "I felt it work a little. Maybe it's this place we're in. Although to avoid their suspicion, why don't we pretended that it worked?"
Victoria asked them all, "Aren't you worried that those two might be watching us as we speak?"
"Not a chance," Eve said with a laugh, "I heard them say that since we'll be under their control they won't need to watch us."
"All the more reason to act like they're right," the red-haired woman agreed.
Dena looked at Citan quizzically as well as with interest as she listened to his story, including about the Musia legend that Chu-Chu had told them.
"Yowza," she said after he was done, "And you went into the portal. But like an idiot, you had something metallic exposed. You're lucky you weren't shocked to death."
"It was pretty dumb to go in like that," he admitted, "But at the time--"
"I know, hindsight's better than foresight," she replied, "Oh, your sword's in the back. Anyway, there is a local landmark 3 miles outside of the city limits that may be related to your story."
"A local landmark? Of what kind?"
Dena got up and put the dinner dishes in the sink, saying, "about 60 years ago, on the same night a UFO landed in a city called Roswell, a second spaceship landed close to Claytonville. Inside was a woman that had the power to change the environment and people...just by singing. The townspeople didn't want the government to get a hold of two dissection subjects--"
"Dissection subjects?" he asked, turning a little pale.
"Yeah...this country's government has a tendency to experiment and dissect what they don't understand. Aliens, people with ESP, you name it. If they got their hands on you....."
He nodded and said, "Quite understood."
"This town, though, they keep secrets really good. The woman with the strange power they never told about and they preserved the spaceship by turning it into a type of store. But, there's something that bothers me."
"What is that?"
Before she could answer, the door swung open, revealing a young woman with short black hair who was, at that moment, rather worried.
Dena stood up and said angrily, "Andrea, don't you know how to knock?"
The girl named Andrea said, "Sorry, but you hung up so suddenly I thought you got attacked or something..." then she looked at the strange man that was sitting in one of the chairs.
"Uh...he's...he's an old friend from Europe," Dena stammered.
The visitor shut the door quickly and replied, "Heh...I should have a 'friend' like that."
"H-Hey! He got here a few minutes ago, d-don't you get any ideas here," was the reply as Dena turned bright red.
"Jokes aside, I've played Xenogears too. Hey, is that a costume or--?"
All three were quiet as Andrea looked Citan over carefully.
"You're...you're for real, aren't you? You're really Citan."
He nodded quietly.
"Oh, man! I knew this town was a weirdness magnet, but I didn't think it'd attract characters from games," the dark-haired woman said, "Won't this be a story to tell!"
"Now you shut up," Dena retorted, "One word of this slipping to the wrong person and he's mincemeat...literally."
She nodded and said, "Well, the band's all played Xenogears, but we're gonna have to figure out a cover story for him. Mind if I sit down?"
"Go right ahead."
Andrea nodded and sat down while Citan asked, "Band? What band?"
"Oh, silly me. We are members of a local band called Anime 99. I'm the lead singer and Andrea's on the keyboards. We play music that's easy on the ears."
The normally dark-blue room lit up for a moment as a small group of familiar students walked in.
"Ah, Atlus," an old man with a small eye and large eye and a big nose stood from his chair, "Good to see you and your friends again."
"Same here, Igor," Atlus replied, looking around, "Hard to believe it's been a year. This place hasn't changed a bit."
"We got your message," a young girl with reddish-brown hair said, a bit irritated, "but it was...cryptic."
"Considering the circumstances, Mary," the tall man beside Igor said though his still mask, "it was necessary. Take a look around this room, my friends and tell me what you see. Anything...different?"
The group from St. Hermelein quietly looked about the strange room where they had created Personas before.
"Hey, where's that chick that'd sing along with the piano?" Mark asked, seeing that there was nobody behind the microphone.
"Her name is Victoria, you buffoon," Nate retorted.
"Come off it, you two," Ellen said, shaking her head.
"Mark has, so to say, hit the nail on the head," the masked man said to them, "An hour ago, a strange being from a different dimension arrived here and captured her by force."
"Mind telling us who the culprit was, Philemon?" Nate asked.
Igor grumbled and then said, "She called herself Ultimecia of Gardenia."
The masked man, Philemon, added, "However, Igor and I have sensed similar intrusions to other worlds in the multiverse."
Mark suddenly said, "Whoa...multiverse? Don't you mean Universe or something like that?"
"You didn't seriously think that your world and the one Mary created were the only ones, did you?" Igor asked with a snicker, "There are countless worlds...a lot of them are in different dimensions, with their own universes. All of them, including ours, are part of the multiverse."
"All right," Atlus said, "I get the feeling you want us to go find Victoria and bring her home."
"You are sharp," the mindmanther said with a smile, "But that's only part of it. No doubt something worse than simple intrusion happened on the other worlds."
"Do all of you know of the Angels of Voice?" Philemon asked them in a strangely serious voice.
"No way! The Voice Angels? Those are just myths," Nate exclaimed.
Ellen hmphed and replied, "That's what you thought about going to different dimensions until last year."
Mary blinked and said, "Ah, I've never heard of this."
A tall guy with a scar on his face came in at that moment, saying, "I have."
"Chris," Atlus remarked, "Nice to see you here."
Chris didn't answer the greeting and asked, "Should I tell them?"
Igor replied, "Go right ahead. Students, you should sit down for this. You'll find chairs nearby."
After everyone found seats in different sections of the Velvet Room, Chris cleared his throat and began the strange story that only he, Igor and Philemon seemed to know...
Deona Lindholm's Fanfiction