Chrono Trigger Dimensions Chapter 42
Crono awoke slowly. He squinted his eyes, the sun was shining through the window right to him. He berated his luck and stood up stretching. Everyone else that was present was still asleep. Missing was Lucca.
Crono stepped over Cid and Marle as he waded his way to the door. A little fresh air would help him wake up. He opened the door and stepped into the halflight of morning. Shutting the door behind him quietly, he looked around, finally spotting Lucca sitting on the eastern edge of the island, her body silouetted against the sunrise.
He walked toward her. she was merely sitting, legs folded in front of her, and staring at the waters. She was dressed as she always was, tan shirt and leggings. Large glasses adorned her face like a mask.
"Up early, aren't you?" Crono asked her.
Lucca didn't turn, but continued to stare out at the ocean. Crono thought for a moment that she hadn't heard her childhood friend and started to ask again. However, she answered him, cutting off his second greeting, "I can't sleep."
"Are you anxious about today's events?" Crono pressed carefully.
"No, I keep having ni--yeah, anxiety." Lucca replied unsteadily.
She shifted her weight slightly, pulling her legs out from under her and stretching them out in front of her. She placed her hands on the ground behind her and leaned back, sighing quietly.
"What's wrong?" Crono continued.
". . .Nothing," Lucca replied, then turned to him, "Come sit down, Crono, you look too tired to stand."
Crono shuffled forward and sat beside her, looking at the ocean. It was indeed a peaceful view. No wonder Lucca hadn't turned away when talking to him.
"I used to be so optimistic about this adventure, I thought everything was going to end up good and fine in the end," Lucca spoke suddenly, "I mean, we beat Lavos and anything else would be child's play. But anyway I think about this, it all turns to: I'm going to die."
"We're not going to die, Lucca," Crono said, patting her shoulder, "Melchior says he has a foolproof plan at his disposal. It should work, he's a guru and he knows his magic."
Lucca looked down to the grass beside her. One hand raised up and absently ran through her hair. "I trust Melchior's judgement, too, but I don't think we can stop something this big, this strong."
"We've stopped something like this before--" Crono began, trying to calm Lucca down.
"But nothing this BIG, Crono. You saw how Nikades just bled the life from Lavos like drinking water out of a glass. And now he is much more powerful, he has the infinite strength of a god. You can't STOP something like that, it's impossible. Something must be done, and I'm afraid I'm. . ." Lucca trailed off.
"Lucca, you're not going to die. No one's going to die," Crono continued, "Nikades is asleep, he can't do anything about what we are doing. We WILL stop him."
Lucca removed her glasses and set them on the grass beside her before turning back to viewing the ocean. She sighed again, as if berating Crono's foolishness.
"This thing is all my fault," she said simply.
Crono tried to argue, but she cut him off, "I built that stupid gatekeeper. If I hadn't been so shortsighted as to forsee that kind of mistake, none of this would happen. And because it's my fault this began, I'm going to make sure it's my fault it stops!"
Lucca suddenly stood up and stormed off, leaving Crono confused behind her. Looking down, Crono also noticed that she had left her glasses behind as well. Crono didn't understand what was going on in his old friend's mind. She wouldn't open up the way she used to.
For one reason or another, Crono was afraid for his friend.
He picked up her glasses and put them in his pocket.
* * * * *
"Hey, Lucca!" Cid yelled as he saw Lucca walking toward the house.
He was standing at the front door, having just stepped out. He saw Lucca walking his way, Crono was cut off from his view. He waved to her, but she didn't wave back.
"Lucca?" he asked as she moved within ten feet of him.
She ignored him.
"Is something wrong?" he continued, turning and walking with her as she passed him.
Lucca suddenly turned to him, "Why is everyone worried about me!? Nothing is wrong, yet everyone seems to thing so! Why?"
Cid stepped back a pace, trying to think of what would make her so angry. "I-I'm sorry, it's just that you weren't answering me. . .and that you're glasses were missing."
Lucca felt up her face, noticing for the first time that she wasn't wearing her glasses. Where had she taken them off? Lucca shrugged and dropped her hand, "I don't know. I'm just. . .anxious."
Cid nodded as she continued walking, he paced by her, "Me too. I'm sorry if I upset you, I didn't know it would."
"It's okay," Lucca said, a moment later, "I'm sorry."
"No problem," Cid answered, glad that the misunderstanding was over.
Then he decided to change the subject, "You look good without your glasses," he said.
Lucca looked at him for a moment, then smiled, "Thanks."
"Not that you don't look good WITH them, Cid corrected himself, shaking his head slightly.
"Tell me, Cid," Lucca said suddenly, "What will you do when all of this is over? Do you plan to return to your time?"
"Not to my time, no," Cid said, "Remember, there's no one I know there. I think I'll stay in this time, get to know the technology and magic a little better. Maybe learn about some of the things you've made."
Lucca looked down to the ground, a look of slight dispair on her face, "Are you sure?"
Cid was puzzled by this sudden empathy, he wondered if it was something he said, "Yes, I'm sure."
"Okay, but I doubt it'll be the same as you picture it," Lucca said, though it wasn't a threat.
"It couldn't be worse than what I was living in," Cid replied.
"I'm sorry if your past wasn't entirely good," Lucca said, "There had to be some good in it though, didn't there?"
"If there had been, I wouldn't remember. The corporate world isn't something for a kid. . .or anybody. It turns a man's principles to dust and blows them away. He just wants to get ahead and become rich," Cid replied, "I'm best off without it. I'd rather live here in the simple life of medieval times."
"Medieval?" Lucca asked.
"The time of kings," Cid said, "That's what we call it in the future."
"Oh," Lucca nodded.
"My past is in the future, and my future is in the past. . .Pretty neat actually," Cid mumbled, suddenly.
They reached the cliffs of the island, the sun at their backs. Lucca turned to Cid after a moment.
"I'll miss you when all of this is over," she said quietly.
"I said I was staying in this time, surely you'll see me every now and then," Cid said, taken aback.
"No, I mean. . .it's just that. . .why is my life so confusing?" Lucca responded.
Then she kissed him.
Cid was shocked for a moment, then returned the kiss. Everything was fading from his mind, but he didnt' care. This was his moment of happiness and he didn't care if it was the only lasting moment of his life.
Or if it was simply the last moment of his life.
'Thank you, Lucca,' he thought, 'for being the one true friend of my life.'
* * * * *
"Are you up?" said a voice in Marle's ear.
She was now awake, but she didn't want to open her eyes. Sleep sounded so good. She didn't want to carry on the activities that today would bring.
Then she felt a slight jolt on her leg. Then another, "Wake up, Marle!" said a voice as the impacts continued.
"Ouch!" Marle said, "I'm awake, quit kicking me!"
Crono stopped and smiled at her as she opened her eyes, "Sorry, that's the best way to wake someone though."
Marle stood, "If you say so. But I was already awake."
Marle looked around and noticed that everyone else was awake. Some were still in the room, but Cid, Lucca, and Magus were nowhere in sight. Magus, of course was still in Lucca's room.
Is Magus awake, yet?" Marle asked Crono.
Crono shrugged, "I don't know. Haven't checked."
"I'll do it," Marshall volunteered.
The large man lumbered up the stairs and into the room, leaving the others to wonder how the wizard was faring.
"What time is it?" Marle asked, stretching and looking out the window.
"I'd say around nine o'clock or so. Probably a little earlier," Melchior said.
The sunrise was almost dead, though it still showed in a few places. Pink was rapidly fading into the the white and blue of a new day. Possibly the last day.
"So early. . ." Marle mumbled to herself.
"We're leaving in an hour, so I thought this would be enough time for everyone to get themselves ready," Melchior explained.
Marshall returned, "Good news and bad news everybody!"
"Good?" Crono asked.
"Magus is half awake right now. Should be up in a few minutes and back to his old cranky self in an hour or so."
The others waited for a moment. Finally, when Marshall didn't add anything, Glenn spoke up, "And?"
"And what?" Marshall asked.
"The bad news?" Crono pressed.
"Oh yeah, that. . .I got a splinter from the banister on the stairs," Marshall finished.
The was a mass exhalation of breath. The bad news could have been something important.
"Is that all?!" Crono was a little annoyed at the trick.
"It hurts, though; I thought it might deserve some recognition," Marshall replied indignantly.
"How long would you say he's been awake?" Melchior asked.
"He was probably coming in and out of consciousness all night. I think he finally fully woke up just a few minutes before I arrived. I am, after all, the master of timing."
"One hour to recovery?" Melchior asked rhetorically, "Is that an estimate?"
"Well, maybe it'll be thirty minutes. Or maybe two hours. He'll be with us in a while, okay?" Marshall continued.
"Then we still have an hour to get ready," Melchior said, then added, "If Magus isn't fully 'able' by then, we'll just have to wait for him."
"Speaking of getting ready. . ." Marshall said, walking over to where he had been sleeping, "I have something."
He reached into his cloak lying on the ground and pulled out a crossbow. Marle's crossbow. He held it out for her to see.
"Hey, that's mine!" she exclaimed.
"How perceptive," Marshall responded, indicating her name on the butt of it, "I went out to the castle looking for some of your stuff. All of this trip, you have been complaining about the fact that you didn't have YOUR crossbow, so I went and got it myself."
"Thanks," Marle said, as she accepted the weapon.
"Of course, you'll have to give me MY crossbow in return," Marshall continued.
"Yeah, yeah; one second," Marle was rummaging in her stuff now, looking for said crossbow.
When she found it, she presented the weapon to Marshall, along with the quiver of bolts. He took it, then turned to his cloak once again. He pulled out another quiver of crossbow arrows, and gave them to her.
"Now that that's all taken care of, let's ready ourselves," Marshall said, taking a final turn to his belongings and getting his supplies in order.
"Where are Cid and Lucca, by the way?" Marle asked.
"They're outside, talking," Crono replied.
"Oh," Marle replied, "Shouldn't we get them and tell them that they need to get ready?"
"Ummmm. . . ." Crono said intelligently, "Give them a few minutes, they have a lot to talk about."
* * * * *
"Damn!" Lucca swore.
"What?" Crono asked.
They were standing outside, surrounding Lucca and the gatekeeper. About forty-five minutes after Marshall had declared Magus's condition, the wizard had stumbled downstairs. He stated that he was okay, and he would be fully stable in a few minutes.
That was enough for Melchior, who set the time of departure to fifteen minutes from then. Magus steadied himself slowly, as he prepared for his role in the battle.
"Damn, damn, damn," Lucca continued, as if she hadn't heard Crono.
"Lucca, it would help if you explained the problem," Crono reminded her.
"Da--" Lucca began, then nodded her head, "Oh, sorry. Remember that wire that shocked me the other day? I'm sure you do; do you also remember that storm that hit just as we were leaving?"
Crono knew where this was heading, so did the others. Cid replied first, "It shorted out?"
"Yeppers," Lucca replied, "It'll take me a few minutes to reset the wirings and stuff. It shouldn't be too much of a problem."
Lucca turned back to the machine and began making the appropriate adjustments. The others stood where they were for a few moments, before noticing that this would take a while. They slowly turned and left to their own areas.
Cid remained, "Anything I can do to help?"
"Not that I know of," Lucca shook her head, "Sorry."
"Okay," Cid nodded and trudged off in search of something to entertain himself for a while.
Lucca turned back to the wiring and tried to find the wire that was causing the problem. She started to mumble to herself, "I knew it was going to rain, why would I leave these wires exposed like that? I'm must be losing it completely. . ."
An image flashed through her mind suddenly. It was gone fast, and she wasn't able to recognize it. She shook her head and tried to continue her work.
The image returned, this time with more clarity, and it lasted much longer. She saw Guardia Castle burning.
"This prophecy has become true," a familiar voice entered her head.
The image switched to a scene of her parents dying. "So has this," the voice continued.
Then an image of Nikades standing over her, gloating in his godlike power as he destroyed everthing around her. The voice spoke once more, "This is yet to occur, but it will in due time."
Nikades was indeed a god now. Lucca shuddered involuntarily. She tried to fight the visions, but they were relentless.
Cid stood at the edge of Death Peak, holding something. Marle, Crono, and Glenn were yelling voicelessly at him. He laughed at them.
Then Marle raised her crossbow and fired. The projectile struck Cid. . . .Cid stumbled,dropping the nameless object to the snowy ground. Then he fell over backwards, toppling over the edge of the peak. . . .
The voice spoke a last time, "This too, will occur in the future."
"Leave me alone, Nikades," Lucca said softly, so that the others wouldn't hear her.
"You truly believe I am this man turned god?" the voice replied.
"Are you saying you aren't him?"
"That and much more. I am something above him. . .and you. Heed my words, for they are what is to happen in the future. A future that YOU created, Lucca. You must now try and stop what only MIGHT occur. However, you cannot stop what I have showed you, the prophecies of what WILL occur."
Lucca shook her head, "Leave me alone. I WILL stop every single thing that I can. Including Cid's death. If I can change the future so drastically, I can change a little thing such as that."
"Huh?" Crono asked, over her shoulder.
"Do what you will, child," the voice said, then left.
"What were you saying?" Crono continued.
Lucca turned to her old friend, "Oh, um, I was just talking to myself. Trying to figure out what to do with this," she indicated the gatekeeper.
"Ah, sorry," Crono apologized and walked away.
Lucca shook her head, and turned back to her work, trying to forget what she had been told. She had too many things on her mind right now.
* * * * *
"Are we all set now?" Marshall asked, as Lucca called them back to the gatekeeper.
"Yeah," Lucca replied, hitting a switch.
A bright red gate opened up in the apex of the gatekeeper. A howling noise erupted from it, though no wind followed. The gate shimmered, but remained.
"Guess that proves it," Marshall said.
"This will take us to Limbo," Lucca explained to the others.
"We already knew that," Crono said.
"Any more aphorisms for us?" Cid supplied.
Lucca glared at them, whom both gave innocent looks to her. Lucca sighed and continued, "As we know, there will be some resistance on our way to Nikades's altar. We'll have to prepare ourselves as we go along, we don't know exactly what we're fighting here."
"This could also be our last moments of existance," Melchior stated, a grave look on his face, "We should put our full effort into this the whole way through. No letting your guard down, not even once. Okay?"
The others agreed.
"It would have been nice if Nikades hadn't destroyed everything we could have used as an army. Guardia, Medina, and Ioko are all in shambles. He had this thing planned out so there wouldn't be ANY resistance when he started this," Marle added, "If there ever was a perfect plan, this comes closest to it that I can think of."
"Raising moral in the troops, huh?" Crono asked with slight sarcasm.
"I'm just warning you that we aren't facing a pushover!" Marle replied.
"Ok, ok. We already knew that, but thanks for the hint," Crono replied.
"Is everyone ready for this?" Glenn asked.
Again a mass of nods.
"Ok," Melchior said, "We have to make sure that Magus can reach Nikades alive to invoke the spell," he handed the amulet to Magus, "Here, you'll need this."
Magus took the medallion, "I already know the spell, so don't bother telling me."
"Good, then everything is set," Melchior said.
"It was great knowing you all," Marle spoke finally.
"You too," Crono said.
". . .Yeah," Lucca replied.
"I'll remember you," Glenn assured.
"It was great knowing all of you also," Melchior stated.
Marshall grunted, "I've had some strange experiences since I joined up with you guys, but I'd say it's been great."
"This has been the only exciting thing to ever happen to me, "Cid replied, "I'll surely say that it was great knowing all of you."
"Then let's go," Crono said, finally.
It was about noon now. The sun shone down on the shimmering red gate as it swallowed the group one by one. After the last one had entered, the gate closed.
The world's last hope were on their way.
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