The Children Of Zeal Chapter 6

Conversations and Interludes

By Froborr d'Wiggy

Chapter Six Characters:

Janala: Lvl **
Weapon: Collapsar
Head: Midnight Helm
Body: Eclipse Armor
Accessory: None

Magus: Lvl **
Weapon: Doom Scythe
Head: Gloom Helm
Body: Gloom Cape
Accessory: Gold Stud

Glenn: Level **
Weapon: Masamune
Head: Safe Helm
Body: Moon Armor
Accessory: Hero Medal

Schala: Level 84
Weapon: None
Head: Safe Helm
Body: Prism Dress
Accessory: Amulet

Crono: Level **
Weapon: Rainbow
Head: Safe Helm
Body: Moon Armor
Accessory: Frenzy Band

Lucca: Level **
Weapon: Wonder Shot
Head: Safe Helm
Body: Prism Dress
Accessory: Gold Stud

Marle: Level **
Weapon: Valkyre
Head: Safe Helm
Body: Prism Dress
Accessory: Amulet

Robo: Level **
Weapon: Peta Arm
Head: Safe Helm
Body: Moon Armor
Accessory: Frenzy Band

Lucent: Level 25
Weapon A: Fists
Weapon B: Burst Rifle
Weapon C: Chain Sword
Head: Guardia Helm
Body: Nova Armor
Accessory: Advisorcom

Guardia: Level 23
Weapon: Staff-sling
Head: Lode Helm
Body: Lumin Robe
Accessory: Amulet


Chaos slid and bubbled around us, dancing and spitting curses at us for our safety, but it could not touch us. Janala had brought us here, a stable pocket he'd discovered long ago, during his years of wandering the Twistor. Schala lay sprawled back on the ground, watching the swirling, hypnotic patterns on the ceiling. Nearby, Glenn was sharpening the Masamune, and Janala and I were sitting, facing each other in silence. At last, I could bear it no longer.

"What are we waiting for?"

Janala sighed. "You can't go rushing around, in the Twistor! I've had some practice in learning to control where it takes me, but it's still mostly a matter of waiting for it to be where you want to go. You're welcome to go outside, but I wouldn't recommend it--at the moment, we're passing through a cluster of timelines where the Earth never even formed. You'd pop from vacuum decompression in an instant if you stepped out now."

"Hmmph," I said quietly. "Is that your excuse for disappearing the day I was born?"

Janala sighed. "I had no control over that, Janus… The Twistor was interfering with our gravitics, it could have sent the whole kingdom tumbling out of the sky! The Doctor and I HAD to fight it, we had to! Unfortunately, the end result was… he died, and I was lost in time for three months. My time. Back home, twelve years passed… by the time I returned, you and Schala were both missing, Lavos had destroyed the Kingdom, Zeal had gone into hiding in the Black Omen--she tried to kill me when I went in to find out what was going on. I couldn't bring myself to kill her, so I ran off to keep looking for you and your sister--"

"You mean you were looking for Schala, not me. You never even KNEW me!"

Janala looked down. "There's a lot of darkness in me, Janus. I've committed a lot of crimes, I've failed and betrayed a lot of people--you, of all people, should understand that!"

A chill settled over me, and I could feel the dark energy waiting, bubbling within me, begging for me to send it coursing down his throat to incinerate his heart. "Never," I said quietly, "never compare us again. You have no idea what it was like--three months alone! I spent ten YEARS fending for myself! The things I did, the people I killed… those crimes are on YOUR hands… father." I added that last in a tone of total contempt, and then turned on my heel and marched out, into the Twistor.

Chaos howled around me, but I was ready for it, this time, and I looked beyond the chaos. Past the chaos, past the madness, back into normal time and space, and I saw… everything.


The Epoch glided slowly through the skies above Ayla's world. Below, the continents had split, and half the world now hung in midair, slowly rising above the clouds of the gathering Ice Age. It was, of course, instantly recognized by Crono, Robo, and Lucca as the Kingdom of Zeal--Marle recognized it as well, after much explanation and drawing of pictures. Guardia was fascinated to see the beginning of her mother's home, and asked question after question of everyone around her. Eventually, it became Lucent's official job to tell her "I don't know," after each question.

"What are we going to do?" asked Lucca when Guardia had exhausted her curiosity.

"I don't know," said Robo quietly. "Any ideas, anyone?"

Marle began waving her hand in the air.

"Any ideas other than a Magic Eight Ball?" asked Robo.

Marle's hand dropped.

"We-ell…" said Lucent. "According to the Chronicles of Guardia, during his adventures before he became King, Crono often consulted Gaspar for advice…"

"But Gaspar's missing!" said Guardia.

"I know that! But… how did Gaspar always know so much?"

The others looked back and forth.

"Cuz he's a Guru," said Marle. "Duh."

After a long pause, Robo said, "When I was with him, while you three were getting the Masamune repaired, I watched him. Somehow, even though he never moved from that spot under the lamp, he always knew exactly what was going on with you guys…"

"You don't think it's something to do with that spot he stood in, do you?" asked Lucca.

"It must be!" cried Guardia. "Let's go, now!"

The Epoch, its control circuits plugged into Robo's I/O Port, turned and flashed into nontime, heading for the End of Time.

"You know," he said to Lucca, as they approached the End of Time, "if what the Entity said to you is true, then that would imply Janala and these Masters are working together…"


In 65,000,000 BC, the Kingdom of Zahl was rising, claiming dominion over the world. Zahl was not the nicest of people, but her descendents would guide the Kingdom higher and higher, until at last they would be on the verge of building the Omen.

The Kingdom of Zeal was a component.

In 12,000 BC, Zeal was gone, destroyed by Lavos. Only one-fourth finished, the Omen was controlled by him and Queen Zeal the 2,154,928th--but it was then destroyed and Queen Zeal killed, and the wreckage of it plummeted into the sea.

The Black Omen was a component.

In 600 AD, in the mountains of Denadoro, a long-lost Dreamstone cache had been discovered by a strange cult called the Omens. From it, they were busily constructing a device which would temporarily alter reality and make your dreams, for a short time, come true.

The Dreamer was a component.

In 1900 AD, the Extensor was nearly complete, and its mergence with the rediscovered Black Omen were going to allow humanity freedom to depart, would allow the building of the Good Omen.

The Extensor was a component.

In 2300 AD, the Omens were rewiring the Dreamer into a new computer, one which integrated into time itself, and could travel through time to seek the Extensor. This computer was called Norn.

Norn was a component.

"A component of what!?" I howled into the void.

A component of the solution.

In 1000 AD war was about to begin between the humans and the Mystics. The Mystics would be entirely wiped out. This mistake could not be allowed to go uncorrected.

This was a component of the problem.

"Who are you?"

The Entity which seeks to rescue the life of this planet. Gaia. The Earth-Mother. The World Machine. That which gives the Dreamstone its fire and the magic its strength.

"You are the Entity which created the Gates? You are the one who helped us destroy Lavos?"

Yes. Protecting the life of this planet from those who would destroy it for their own ends.

"Then I am in your debt. You allowed me to destroy my enemy."

Yes. But there is another threat, older, stronger, and more dangerous than Lavos.

"That has nothing to do with me."

It does. That threat is what created Lavos.

"Created… Then I am indebted to you again!"

You will help to destroy it?

"I must, if it was behind Lavos! What is this threat?"


Guardia looked around warily. "So this is the End of Time?"

"Yeah," said Lucent quietly, as the two of them wandered off into the corner, watching the older group studying the lamppost.

"It's cold."

"I'm not cold. Here, have this."

Guardia looked down at the strange, dimly glowing yellow object Lucent held out to her. "What is it?"

"It's a warmer. Put it in your pocket."

Guardia shrugged, and stuck it in her pocket. A warm yellow glow flashed through her clothing, and faded, leaving her comfortable warm. "Nice," she said. "Future technology?"

"Yup." Silence descended for a few minutes. After a while, Lucent spoke again. "You worried about your mom?"

Guardia sighed. "Yeah. How about you, why are you here with us?"

Lucent looked off into the distance. "I'm really not sure. I was going to go search for my brother Vincent, but then I discovered the Omens--they're a weird cult that runs the Death Peak International Day of Lavos Memorial--had attacked Arris Dome out of the blue. Well, after that, the General and I went with an army to attack them, and got almost wiped out, and sidetracked into the Keeper's Dome, and found out Belthazar was missing. So we're looking for Belthazar." He took a deep breath.

"Guru of… Reason, right? I remember my mom talking about him--they had just finished their training when her baby brother was born."

"Really?" said Lucent. "I always got the impression that they were really old from the Chronicles."

"Oh, they were. Their training lasted fifty years ago--and even so, it took three Gurus to match the work of one Doctor. That's the guy that trained them, the Doctor. Strange old fellow… he died the same time my grandfather did, the day my uncle was born."

"And your uncle, that's the Magus?"

Guardia shrugged. "I guess so."

"Hey," said Lucent, leaning close, "you want to here a secret?"

Guardia looked at him. "Sure, why not."

Lucent grinned. "There are three people on this trip I'm descended from already."

Guardia stared. "Three? Who is there besides me?"

Lucent's grinned broadened. "Marle isn't her real name--she's really Princess Nadia of Guardia, and my direct ancestor! And not only that, but her and Crono…"

"Crono!?" Guardia nearly screamed, but managed to keep it down to a squeek. "She and Crono are gonna…"


"Oh…" said Guardia quietly.

Lucent watched her closely. "Oh, I see… I guess girls really do go for the silent types, huh?" he joked.

"What!?" screamed Guardia. "No, that's not it, I just… um… oh, I couldn't expect someone like you to understand, anyway."

Lucent just sat there, grinning at her.

"Wipe that smirk off your face, you little freak!" hissed Guardia. "I do NOT have a crush on Crono!"

"Well, you could have fooled me." Lucent began singing in an infantile voice. "Guardia and Crono, sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-"

Guardia shrieked something incoherent, and jumped at Lucent, knocking him flat on his back. Caught momentarily by surprise, Lucent pushed her to the side, and they quickly degenerated into a rolling mass of flailing limbs, alternately laughing and yelling.

"Children!" shouted Robo. "What are you two doing?"

The two combatants paused, staring at each other, panting, bruised, and exhausted. Then they looked at Robo, then back at each other, and finally burst out laughing until they felt their sides would burst.


"Hold on," said Janala, "I've got a fix on him. Let's bring him back in…"

The walls of the Twistor suddenly parted in a whorl of madness, and I strode in, wrapped the fingers of one hand around Janala's throat, and lifted him off his feet.

"Sir Ma--" started Glenn, but Schala cut him off.

"Janus! Put father down! What are you doing?"

I squeezed tighter. "You lying son of a bitch, you were behind all of it! Me, mother, even Schala--were we just part of some game to you and that Doctor!?"

"Janus, have you gone mad? This is our father, he would never--"

Janala managed to croak out, "Let me… explain…"

Schala glared at me. "Janus, put him down and let him talk!"

With a contemptuous sneer, I flung Janala to the floor, and he sat there, rubbing his throat. "Before I say anything, I want you all to promise that you will do nothing until you've heard me out--heard everything I have to say!"

"An agreement any honorable man should have to make, Sir Janala. I shall hear you out," said Glenn.

"Of course I'll listen, father!" said Schala.

I sighed. "Very well. But after it's over, we have it out, got it, 'father'?"

Janala nodded. "If you still wish to fight me after I've explained… my life will be yours to take."

"I look forward to it," I responded.

Janala sighed "Well, Janus, I can see you've spoken to Gaia… she lives partially in the Twistor, you know, and she and I fight constantly for control of it. And I'm guessing, from your actions… she told you what I and the Doctor were doing, that brought the Twistor… I told you I'd committed crimes, betrayed people… but I had no choice! We tried for years to find another way to stop what was coming, but there was none. We had to do it, we HAD to!"

"Father…" asked Schala, clearly sensing that something terrible was coming, "what did you and the Doctor do?"

Janala stared at the floor for a long time, and mumbled something, almost to himself. Then his head snapped up, and he looked straight at Schala and me, all emotion wiped from him, buried somewhere deep underneath in the blackness. "We created Lavos."


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