Chrono Trigger Invasions Chapter 3
"Is he going to be all right?" Marle asked uncertainly.
The doctor looked up from the wounded soldier he was treating and replied, "Most definitely. He's healing quite fast as it is."
Crono nodded his head, "Oh good."
"Let's go then," Marle said to Crono, turning to leave the room.
Crono shrugged and followed her out of the room. They climbed the stairs and started down the hallway that led to the castle's one exit.
The castle was, of course, partially rebuilt. Even so, the ceiling in many parts was still not up. The walls for the first floor of the castle however, were there. The castle now looked like a large, one-storey house with dozens of holes in its roof. Of course, that was much better than sleeping out in the open.
They turned the corner, preparing to leave the castle. However, there was a small commotion at the entrance. Crono held his arm out to the side, barring Marle from continuing her forward pace. She stopped and looked at him questioningly.
"I'm sorry, sir, but you can't go in," said one of the castle's guards.
"I'll go in if I want, soldier boy, I don't think you could stop me," the voice that replied was very familiar.
"Sir, I'm going to have to ask you to put my friend back down on the ground. And let go of my tunic--" the voice was cut off suddenly.
Marle and Crono crept up slowly toward the front gates. Suddenly, one of the guards went flying through the entrance. He landed on the stone floor above the stairs that led to the throne room.
Immediately, the two had suspicions as to who it was that was trying to get in. Only one person they knew was that strong.
To answer their thoughts, Marshall aka The Marshal walked into the castle holding the remaining guard up in the air. The guard was struggling vainly to release himself, but Marshall had much too firm of a grip.
The guard saw the Queen and spoke, "Someone to. . .see you, Your Majesty," he said awkwardly, his mind on other problems at the moment.
"Uhhh. . .hi, Marshall," Crono said.
Marshall turned to the left, seeing them. "Ah, there you are. I thought I was going to have to go look for you," the guard continued to struggle in his viselike hold.
"Ummm, could you put my guard down now?" Marle asked.
"Huh? Oh, yeah sure," Marshall dropped the man, who landed with a not too gracious thud, "I really like your welcoming squad. Made me feel right at home."
The guard struggled to his feet as if he was drunk. He staggered a moment, then bowed to Marle and went to see what had become of his partner.
Marle glared at Marshall, "Their job is to keep people without appointments out of the castle. They're supposed to be like that."
Marshall grunted, "Their job, huh. They aren't doing too well of a job, then."
Marle decided she wasn't getting anywhere, "Why are you here? I thought you didn't want to help with the constructions."
"I'm not here for that," Marshall shook his head, "I heard you were attacked. I just came to see if everything was ok."
"Everything's okay for me, Marshall. But there are three dead guards, and an injured one downstairs." Marle replied.
"Yeah, I heard. I also heard that it was those shadows things that did it," Marshall replied, "I'm not too sure that this thing is over. They'll obviously be back."
Crono saw what was coming, "You're thinking of hanging around then? So you can be here when they come back? Sort of like a bodyguard."
Marshall shook his head quickly, "No, no, no, no, no. NOT like a bodyguard. I'm just making sure that nothing like that happens again. I still owe things to the throne anyhow, as Nadia knows."
Marle nodded slowly, "Ok. If that's what you want. Let me guess, you want pay as well."
"No," Marshall replied, "I OWE things to the throne. Recieving pay would set me back. Business back at 'home' has been slow due to the renovations anyhow and I'm getting bored."
Marle was about to retort to the remark about 'renovations' when there came a noise from behind her. She and Crono turned to see the previously injured soldier stumbling forward. The doctor was rushing beside him, telling him to go back to his bed.
The soldier ignored him however. He was healing at a tremendous rate. He seemed to stop limping and started walking. He was truly a fighter.
He approached Marle and bowed, "Prepared to continue duty, Your Majesty."
"Ummm. . .Doctor?" Marle stalled.
"I keep telling him to stay in his bed, but he won't listen. But for some reason, he seems perfectly healed. . .I don't have any objections now, Your Majesty," the doctor was shocked at what he was witnessing.
Marle felt a tapping on the back of her shoulder. She turned to Marshall, "What?"
"So I am 'hired'?" he asked.
"I guess since you aren't accepting pay, I really can't stop you. Go ahead," Marle replied.
"Good, and for my first job. . . "
Marshall suddenly reached out and grabbed the miracle soldier by the front of his shirt and lifted him in the air. The soldier was unarmed so he could only grapple at the larger man's arms. There was the ringing of steel and Marshall armed himself.
"What are you doing!!??" Marle yelled.
"The eyes," Marshall explained enigmatically, "They never do learn to hide that, do they?"
The soldier suddenly jerked and began to convulse in Marshall's hands, causing the former bounty hunter to nearly lose his grip. Then something spurted out of the man's mouth. A shadow.
Ericane escaped the man and flowed into the floor. The giant had spotted him out almost immediately. His plan had been set back. No bother, he would be back. He entered the basement area where the soldier had been lying and flew toward the walls. He entered the stone and fled through the ground.
Moments later, the group reached the bottom of the stairs. Marshall still had his sword out, but had left the soldier lying back where he had scared the shadow from him. The shadow was gone.
"Damn," Marshall said, sheathing his sword.
"Thank you," Marle said, "I'd almost forgot you can see things in people's eyes."
"No problem, except it'll be back," Marshall replied, "You might want to tend to the guard though, something tells me he might be in a little trouble now that his means of support is gone."
The doctor said something and ran back upstairs. He stopped momentarily to grab some stuff from his bag lying on a nearby table and then continued to the stairs.
Crono shuddered suddenly, "It would have killed us if you hadn't seen through that."
"Maybe," Marshall replied, "Maybe it was just a spy. It was in the perfect position to learn some 'high money' information."
Marle sighed, "It looks like we still have to fight a war even if Nikades is gone."
Moments later, the doctor returned. He reported that the guard was indeed dead now. In fact, he showed signs of being dead ever since the fight in the forest.
* * * * *
Cid, I know you have other things on your mind, but you must go on this errand I am sending you on. This is something important to me, Crono, Marle, Glenn, and Marshall. Their use of magic may be explained if we delve into my discoveries.
Cid sighed and turned the page. He hadn't given up on a way to bring her back yet. Surely, there were some hints in here that would help his search. Things that she didn't remember placing in her journals. He read the next page.
You must bring this note to the others, so that they may read it and understand their heritage. This is very important to me, Cid. Please.
The book ended. Cid shut it and put it atop the pile beside him. He had read all but six of her books now. If he continued, he could finish by the end of next week. However, Lucca's pleading voice echoed within him. She really wanted him to do this for her.
He sighed once more and stood up. He pulled the note from the book and, for the first time in a month, left the house of his late friend.
* * * * *
The world had just left the remnants of a large war. All times had been effected by its devastating shockwave, and the rebuilding was now in progress. The world seemed to be turning to normal.
However, in the sky at night, new stars were appearing. Some people thought it a good omen, others thought it bad. Some people simply thought of it as simply new stars being born.
They first appeared in the future in the twenty-first century. Several days later, they appeared in the Prehistoric times as well. Following, they appeared in the time of Zeal, the seventh century, and the eleventh century. Finally, people began to catch glimpses of these new occurances in the distant future.
As the days passed by, the stars became more intense and larger. Almost as if they were coming nearer. Something was indeed coming.
Normality for the world might have to wait.
* * * * *
Magus finally caught a glimpse of the Ocean Palace that afternoon. Scanning the ocean as he flew over it, a sparkle that was much too bright to be water caught his eye. Apon further inspection, he found that he had at last found his quarry.
Magus stopped his forward momentum and hovered over the ocean. He focused his mind and a sphere of energy surrounded him. Something to keep the water out.
Then, like a rock, Magus dropped into the water. The water steamed slightly where the energy field hit it as Magus sunk beneath sea level and was surrouned by the waters. As he descended, the light from above became much dimmer.
As uncurious as he was, he couldn't help but look at the strange and bizarre aqualife he passed by during his descent. Apparently, the constant blizzards above had barely affected them. A lanternfish swam by, illuminating his sphere for a moment, before it flicked its tail and scurring off.
Magus once again looked down to see the Ocean Palace fifty yards below him now and closing fast. He looked for a point of entry, but could see none. Surely it was there. There had been an escape exit built just in case something went wrong.
He quickly realized that he was on the wrong side of the palace. He focused his mind and began to move to the side, toward the other side of the structure. His sphere faded slightly, telling him he was running out of time.
Magus pushed himself to the limit, advancing at four knots now and increasing. Startled sealife swam in all directions to get out of his way.
Then he was there, the port--closed at the moment--stood below him. He slowed his momentum, instead dropping toward the entrance. His shield faded once more, this time for a much longer period.
It was very dark around him, he wondered how he was able to see the glinting of the palace from above. Then the sphere faded a final time and was gone. The water rushing at him, nothing holding it back any longer.
Magus quickly held his breath as he reached out and grabbed ahold of the wheel of the door. He tried to turn it, and found that it was jammed by kelp. Coral had begun to accumilate on the palace as well, though its growth was much slower.
Magus was running out of air very fast now. He pulled on the wheel once more, feeling it budge slightly. He worked on that movement trying to free it from the seaweed's hold. He felt himself losing his hold on consciouness, he just had a moment or so left. He pulled again at the wheel, and this time it gave way.
The door swung inward, pulling the unprepared wizard into the building. He was pushed in by the water and struck the far wall hard, the breath being knocked out of him. He stood and quickly inhaled as the water level quickly began to rise up to his neck, then it was over his head once more.
When the room was full of water and the pressure was stabilized, Magus swam to the door and heaved it shut, turning the now resilient wheel back into the locked positon. After having that done, he turned to the inside door that led to the complex.
He grasped the wheel and turned it. The door swung open inward once more, and the water heaved itself out with Magus in front. He was thrown through the door, where he hit the ground and was pushed several feet before the water stopped.
The drainage system on the floor quickly sucked up the water as the escape room emptied itself. Magus weakly pushed himself up off of the wet ground and shivered. The water was very cold.
But he was inside.
* * * * *
"This is MY job, not his. . .Your Majesty," Tristan said, after he had learned of The Marshal's joining.
Marle, Crono, Marshall, Tristan, and the counsellor were all inside of the drafty throne room. Tristan wasn't very happy about the addition, he still didn't trust The Marshal after the 'incident' that occured nearly twenty years ago.
"I'm sorry," Marle retorted, "We are underhanded right now, and as you heard, he owes this family."
"Owes you what? It could very well be that he 'owes' you a stab in the back--" Tristan continued, but was cut off.
"I won't have you talking like that in my presence, captain," Marle was quick to stop the soldier, "We need all of the help we can get. Marshall here has proven time and time again that he is willing to present some of that help. No arguments."
That last statement finished the argument more or less. Tristan sighed and glared at Marshall, "Very well, with your leave..."
"You may go," Marle said.
Tristan turned briskly and walked out of the throneroom.
"At least you know you'll have someone watching your back now," Crono said with deep sarcasm after Tristan had left.
"This just means I'LL have to spend more time watching my back now," Marshall replied.
"Tristan isn't like that," Marle retorted, "He's a man of honor."
"She's right," the councellor said, "He didn't get to where he was through manipulating politics, he got there through hard work and trust."
Marshall grunted, "Very well. Just make sure that his soldiers don't decide to do something unchivilrous whenever he's absent."
"You won't have any problems," Marle said, then reminded him, "This was your idea in the first place, remember?"
"Please, don't remind me," Marshall said, leaning his head back so he could think over his new predicament.
* * * * *
Cid reached the gates of the castle. All around him, people were all working together to help rebuild the castle. Construction was going great now, they had finished the first level, and were adding the walls for the second. Wooden ladders were everywhere as people carried the rocks necessary for the construction.
He shook his head, they were going so quickly. It was amazing what happened when people worked together. He wet his lips and walked up to where the portcullis should have been, but wasn't as of yet.
Two guards blocked his path.
Cid tried to go around, but one of the guards reached out and grabbed his arm, holding him in place.
"You can't go in without an appointment, boy," the guard said.
"I'm a friend of Marle's, let me in," Cid said impatiently.
"Don' know anybody named Marle," the guard said.
"I mean Nadia," Cid quickly retorted.
"Too late, you already messed up," the guard started to turn him around to toss out when another voice broke through.
"What's the problem?"
The guard released Cid instantly, "No problem, captain. Just sending away someone without an appointment."
Cid turned and faced the captain, "I know M--Nadia, sir. I need to speak with her about a message from Lucca."
"Lucca, huh. She's the one who died. . .along with her family, right?"
Cid reddened slightly in anger at the captain's calm demeaner in which he spoke of her death. He quickly calmed himself down and replied, "Yes."
"I was about to leave the castle, but I'll go talk with Her Majesty. Maybe she can sort this out."
"Thank you, sir." Cid replied.
"That's 'captain' not 'sir'. I'm not a gentleman, I'm a soldier."
"Thank you, captain," Cid corrected.
The captain turned around and walked back into the castle. When he was inside, the guards turned back to Cid.
"Hope you're not lying," one spoke, "I respect my job, but I'd rather it not get TOO eventful."
"Yeah," the other agreed, "If I wanted to fight, I'da been a real soldier."
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