Ertai and Seraphina stopped short as they rounded a corner, and saw the scene of devastation before them. The halls abruptly ended, and before them was nothing but charred dirt for about half a mile. The air was still rippling with heat, signaling that the battle had ended not long ago. "I'm guessing this is the explosion we felt." Seraphina gingerly patted the ragged edge of a wall. It was still hot.
"Man, there's no rubble. It's just... vaporised." Ertai observed. "If Magus did this, he's even more powerful than I thought."
"I suppose you think you're even more powerful than that?" Seraphina raised an eyebrow.
"A hell of a lot more powerful." Ertai grinned. "Hell of a lot more powerful." He reiterated, apparently for his own benefit. Then he frowned. "I can't feel Magus' power at all anymore. But, I can't imagine how he managed to last as long as he did. In the best case scenario, Levasos respected him for being such a worthy opponent, and just knocked him out, instead of killing him."
"You don't know Levasos." Seraphina frowned, beginning her journey accross the scorched earth. "But it is unusual for anyone to last longer than a couple seconds against him. Only my father lasted longer, and Levasos sure didn't kill him..." She trailed off.
"What exactly happened to your father anyw-"
"Later." She cut him off. Looking back over her shoulder, she saw that he looked a little miffed, so she elaborated. "I'll explain everything later. Right now, we need to concentrate on the fight." He nodded, and they continued along silently. As they rounded a corner into the most heavily fortified area of the mesas, a bright light could be observed coming from the end. Ertai suddenly stopped in his tracks. Turning around, Seraphina saw that he was shivering. "What's wrong?" He was breathing heavily now, his hands on his knees.
He looked up at her, and his gaze seemed to borr into her eyes. "What... is... that?!" He demanded. The way his eyes were glazed over, she could tell that he was sensing the power of Levasos.
"That's the monster you seem to think you're going to crush so easily." She responded flatly.
"He could be... No, he is stronger than I am." Ertai sighed one more time, then straightened back up. "It feels like a blizzard is doing its best to bury the fire inside of me." He observed.
"And yet, your resolve seems just the same." She gave him a funny look.
"Of course!" He grinned. "He may be stronger than me, but he can't be stronger than both of us!" Then he turned to face her again. "Why? Is your resolve weakening?"
"I never had any." She looked away from him. "I thought that when you sensed his power, you'd want to run."
He looked flabbergasted. "Then why did you come with me, instead of leaving with Schala?"
"I was hoping there'd be a chance to save my brother..." She shook her head. "And, I've spent the past several years of my life trying to convince Leng that I'm strong enough, mentally and physically, to be able to help him out when he needs it."
"But you are!" He assured her, before realizing that a statement that simple probably wasn't going to do it. "Aren't you?"
"I don't know." Her voice quavered. He realized she was supressing tears. She was afraid. He didn't understand. "I mean, it's something I did because the rest of the family was also involved. I wanted to help free our father." Then she turned to look at him again. "But I never planned to have the whole burden placed on me! All my brothers are gone now. Now I have to fight Levasos alone!"
Ertai warily glanced down the hall, but since Levasos hadn't come flying out to attack them already, he probably had as much time as he needed. "I still don't quite understand. If you didn't think you could fight him, why did you stay involved with Leng's-"
"He was my oldest brother!" She gestured helplessly. "I wanted to prove that his baby sister wasn't a complete baby after all. I wanted my brothers' approval, not the fate of the world in my hands!"
Ertai put his hands on her shoulders. "You won't be alone, I promise. I too, once did something foolish, to prove myself to my older brother." Ertai thought back to the time he and Greven had scaled the side of Enhasa, willingly marching into the middle of a devastating battle, just to see what it was like. His life had been changed forever. "I'm not going to kid you. This is probably going to be a life-changing event. For me as well. But we possess the power to stop him, and because of what he is, we have to use it. Are you with me?"
She gave him a weak smile. "Yeah, just don't depend on me too much." They marched down the hall, into the light. Once their eyes adjusted from the relative darkness of the hall, they found themselves in a large chamber, lit by kerosene lanterns. Only the light they were producing was many times brighter than it should have been. Next to a side door of the chamber, they saw two figures, one handing a large sword to the other. "Father!" Seraphina gave a quiet gasp.
Ertai squinted his eyes as they continued forward. The guy with spikes up the wazoo was obviously Levasos, so the masked man must be Gazuga. His face was covered with mask and hood, but a green sensor array was in place of one eye. The other was a striking red shade in the iris. Even as he bowed to accept the sword, he displayed an almost regal arrogant manner. With his head bent low, his back remained perfectly straight. Levasos was saying something. Ertai pricked up his ears. "-no longer of any use to me. Take it back to Aybabtu and instruct your best men to guard it. Neither Schala nor Magus can be allowed to obtain it." Ertai's eyes widened at that. Magus must still be alive! Only, if that was the case, where was he?
Gazuga's head turned to look straight at them. "Master, we have guests." He observed, almost with humor in his voice. But, as he got a closer look at the pair, his eye widened.
Levasos noticed. "Don't worry, I'll do my best not to kill her."
"Huh? Oh, yes, thank you." Gazuga nodded. He'd been having an entirely different train of thought...
"Leave us. I want to deal with this myself." Levasos made a shooing motion with his hand.
"Of course master." Gazuga bowed full out this time, and quickly stepped out the door, gripping the sword tightly.
"You'll need a lot more than yourself to deal with us!" Ertai declared, and not in a bluffing manner, either.
"You are not part of the equation." Levasos told him, as if that was supposed to make perfect sense. However, after observing the looks of puzzlement on the teenagers, he elaborated. "You will prove no great help to me, but also no great hindrance to me. You are insects, and since I'm in a good mood, I won't squash you if you leave now."
"If you're at all sane, I can only assume you're basing your assumptions on my power when I fought Dalton on Elosia. It would be quite wise of you to reevaluate your conclusions." Ertai assumed a fighting stance, and a pure white fire surrounded him. Seraphina backed up a step. "Here, I'll help you out. Go ahead, sense my chi!"
Levasos chuckled. "If you insist, but you're just wasting my time if..." The Lavoid's face instantly lost its amused look. "I do not understand. First Magus and now you? He had increased his power drastically since I last sensed him on Elosia, but that's due to some special enhancements I engineered him with, and also in part because of who his soul is. But you! You are not a hero of the ages. You are a normal human in every way. Yet you are infinitely more powerful than Magus. How?"
"I drink a lot of juice." Ertai's sword launcher materialized in his hands, his smile disappearing as well. "You know, I thought I would be up for this whole pre-battle boasting session and what not, but I was wrong." Levasos gave him a questioning look. "I just feel my anger rising the longer you're in my sight. Your father possessed innocent people, made them do unspeakable acts, killed my entire family, and nearly wiped the human race off the face of Elosia."
"And you're misinterpreting those events to place the blame on me how?" Levasos seemed amused again.
"You plan to do the same thing here, obviously." Ertai tensed.
"What on Earth makes you think that?" He replied with a lighthearted air. "You know even less about me than I know about you. You're just automatically assuming that I'm content to be a grunt worker for the Queens, like my father was."
"Oh, so you're not going to suck the life out of this planet?" Ertai asked sarcastically.
"Not exactly." Levasos smiled a conspiratorial grin. "I plan to make our universe the most dominant of all the billions of universes in existence. I will take us to higher planes of existence. All the suffering the sentient beings of this universe constantly endure will be over!"
"Shut up!" Ertai declared. "I'm not interested in playing your little mind games. I try to look you in the eye, but the only thing I see are the dead faces of my brothers and sisters!" Seraphina stepped back as the flames around him intensified. "Especially Greven..."
"Interesting that you should bring that up..." Levasos began, but Ertai continued his monologue.
"And especially Schala!" He growled dangerously. "You transformed a beautiful, kind young woman who wanted nothing but to live a peaceful life in a virtual pardise into an undead monstrousity!" Ertai stretched his hands to the sky now. "And that, I cannot endure! So die!! Just DIE!!!!" With that final shout, Levasos was lost in a brilliant green explosion that vaporised the roof of the chamber, and most of the wall they were nearest to. Seraphina had to throw up a magical shield as the heat from the blast washed over her. As she studied the blast, she was unable to determine just how Ertai had done it. It looked like a chi explosion, but Ertai's chi had neither risen nor fallen as the blast went off. He clearly hadn't cast a spell, and all powerful mana based magic required quite a bit of charge up time. It was as if the explosion had appeared simply because he willed it to.
As the explosion dissipated, Levasos of course still stood right where he had been standing, but she was glad to see a magical shield humming around him, and he looked like he'd had to strain to get it up in time. "You really do blame me for everything my father did!" The Lavoid sounded surprised. "Why is that?"
"You're a Class B." Ertai explained in a surprisingly genial voice, or at least, she thought so. "Even as a baby, you had the power to stop him."
"Oh, right! And I suppose you regulated all your parents' activities as an infant?" Levasos laughed.
"I cried when they fought. To get them to stop." Ertai nodded.
"Okay, point taken, but it's not a very good one." Levasos folded his arms, then laughed again as a realization hit him. "You were acting! You weren't really that upset after all!"
"Okay, you got me." Ertai held his arms up in an embarassed manner, a goofy expression on his face. Seraphina's jaw dropped. "I always wanted to try a fake out like that." He brought his sword launcher out again. "But I do stand by my arguments. I'm going to kill you here."
"Your motives are very interesting." Levasos observed, sounding impressed. "You truly wish to stop me because you believe it's the right thing to do, not because of some misguided attempt at revenge."
"That's right." Ertai said in a self-righteous voice. "I was deeply hurt by all of your father's atrocities, but I'm not so consumed by guilt and anger that I have to kill someone to make myself feel better."
'What is he?' Seraphina wondered. 'A god?'
Levasos laughed with glee. "Ah, you may be the first worthy adversary I've ever faced."
"Oh, I'm more than worthy." Ertai assured him. "You must allow me to convince you."
Levasos brought his arms into place, his hands balled into fists. "Then do so now."
Ertai bowed his head for a second. "As you wish." He fired his sword launcher, and as Levasos zipped to the right, as he had expected, Ertai jetted behind him and slammed a full out kick into the Lavoid's shoulder. He was hurled past the wall that had been vaporised in the initial explosion, to go smashing head first into the nearest undamaged wall, several hundred feet beyond. Ertai landed lightly on his feet. For the first time, Seraphina felt a faint glimmer of hope.
Levasos came blasting back at Ertai so fast he probably hadn't even landed before he turned around. Ertai fluidly stopped his charge with one hand, then, as Levasos hovered there, stunned, kicked the Lavoid in the stomach as hard as he could. Levasos hacked up some orange blood and then collapsed on the ground. "How?!" He demanded. "How did you acquire this power?!"
"It's all about the juice." Ertai said offhand, then kicked the Lavoid in the ribs. He went flying through the air, to crash through one of the undamaged walls in the chamber. A roar came from the Levasos shaped hole, but it quickly turned into a laugh. Levasos flew back into the action, now blazing with the fires of a chi power up himself. His fist slammed into and broke through Ertai's block, and on into his face.
Ertai was momentarily overwhelmed by the enormous increase in power Levasos displayed. The Lavoid landed several huge hits, then backed off, preparing a special attack. He was assuming that Ertai had been momentarily knocked silly, but Ertai was used to being wailed on. The moment Levasos stopped hitting, he started. "Kishin!!" Levasos was driven back into the wall as he strained to get out of the way of Ertai's unstoppable combo. Each punch drove him deeper into the stone, until the final blast sent him crashing through to the other side, and the wall began to collapse under the stress. Ertai took the pause to rest, breathing heavily. "Leng's not going to be happy that you're trashing his fortress." A perfectly calm voice drifted out of the dust.
"What are you talking about?" Ertai demanded of the hole in the wall. "You killed Leng, didn't you?"
"Hardly. He'll be second in command after Magus and Gazuga." An exclamation of disbelief came from Seraphina's direction. "Oh yes!" Levasos replied more enthusiastically. "There are high positions in my ranks for Habeeb and Moogoo as well. After their transformations are complete, they will all serve me just as well as your father has!"
As Ertai was turning to look at Seraphina, Levasos came rushing back into the room, head first. Ertai correctly guessed that the Lavoid was trying for a headbutt, and got his arms up to block in time. However, a warning bell went off in his head as the impact didn't have anywhere near the force he'd expected. He realized too late that Levasos had another target in mind, and he instantly dropped as Levasos delivered a brutal hit to the one area Billy hadn't prepared him for.
Ertai felt as if his testicles had just exploded, and he was unable to concentrate on anything else. "Augh, crap!!" He hissed in pain.
"Your power won't do you any good if you still have highly vulnerable areas." Levasos informed him.
"But, I was... fighting honorably!" Ertai protested, his hands white with pressure on his knees, because he didn't think gripping hard would do anything to help the situation.
"Honor is a completely useless concept." Levasos said scornfully. "I'm not sure how it ever cropped up in the first place."
Ertai wasn't paying too much attention now though. "Keeeeeripes, why do my boys have to be so big?" He demanded of his groin. To Seraphina's immense surprise, he and Levasos both proceeded to laugh. "Seriously, until a couple years ago, they were quite manageable."
"Puberty, another human weakness." Levasos said, still sounding amused. "Now, I do believe I've earned my tactical advantage here, so I'm going to exploit it before you recover." Levasos explained calmly, then kicked Ertai hard in the ribs. The human went crashing through one of the two undamaged walls, amazingly not emitting a sound as he went. Levasos burst into flight, and headed for Ertai's landing spot.
Seraphina's kick to the head caught him completely by surprise. He was slammed back into the ground, where he lay dazed. "Well, well, this is a surprise." He analyzed the slight female form that hovered over him with amusement. "After the pathetic attempts of your brothers, I certainly didn't expect you to be able to harm me in the least."
"Seraphina, get down!!" Ertai's voice yelled from wherever he was. She flew off to the side, and Levasos sprang to his feet. "Big Bang Attack!!" Levasos whirled to the side, expecting to be able to dodge it easily, but somehow, the chi bomb covered the distance faster than should have been physically possible. Seraphina hurried to throw up a chi barrier, but found one of Ertai's design already surrounding her. The gigantic explosion knocked down all the walls, blasting them outwards even as they were vaporised, and turned the floor into a crater. Ertai flew back into the action, and very, very gingerly, landed on the edge.
As he had anticipated, Levasos came rocketing out of the explosion even before it was over, but looking noticeably singed. Without a word, he began swinging his fists at Ertai, and the teen responded in kind. Though Ertai carefully flew throughout the exchange, preventing his lower body from experiencing any undue stress. Just as Levasos landed a good hit to Ertai's face, the gigantic lightning explosion known as Luminaire went off right in his. He was hurled back, giving Ertai the key seconds he needed. He stretched both hands to the sky, a pleased grin lighting up his face. "Ultimaaaaaaaaa!!!" Levasos held up his hands in defense as the intense lightning and shadow spell engulfed him.
Finally, after the sound of the explosion had died away, everything was quiet. A few stones could be heard dropping from what remained of the walls. Ertai was breathing heavily, and Seraphina was staring at him in amazement. Levasos, of course, was still there, but he was kneeling now, bleeding from many places. He and Ertai both cast healing spells at exactly the same time. Ertai finally stood up straight, very grateful to have that pain gone. Levasos stood now too, looking up at Ertai with surprise. "I must say, you've improved drastically since the last time we fought, brother!"
Ertai rolled his eyes. "Now what are you talking about? If you're going to try to mess with my head, you might try something a little more believable."
"Precisely." Levasos smiled dangerously. "Which should lead you to conclude that I'm telling the truth. You saw the skeleton, didn't you?"
Ertai nodded slowly. "Yes, of course I did. What does that have to do with you?"
"Then your question is answered. It was just the skeleton and the armor, right?"
"Well, duh! Of course, all the flesh and organs got burned away." Ertai narrowed his eyes, not caring to have that memory dredged up.
"Did they now?" Levasos raised an eyebrow. "Or might they have been simply absorbed?" Ertai narrowed his eyes still further. "It was remarkably clean for someone who'd been burned to death, wouldn't you say?"
"Again, yes, but I assume the spell that killed him vaporised-"
"Then it would have vaporised the bones too, no?" Levasos grinned. "Blood, flesh, muscles, organs, and the much touted human nervous system. All of Greven's were absorbed by my father and given directly to me." Ertai didn't make any movement. "You see, we Lavoids are born without humanoid bodies, or our bio armor. At birth, we really are just a shell, and the framework for a brain." Ertai still didn't move. "My father saw into the future, and knew that he would have to die to save me. He also knew that Schala would follow me into space, to try to kill me. Thus, it was decided that Greven's vital systems, with such an intimate knowledge of my future enemy, would be the perfect basis for my body."
"Nice story." Ertai said tightly. "But I'm not buying it."
"Oh no?" Levasos asked genially. "Who but Greven would remember the time you got lost in Kajar when you were three years old, and you got so scared by the time I found you that you'd pooped your pants?" Ertai gulped. "Who but Greven would know that Schala likes to have her left ear nibbled ever so gently?" Ertai's face turned red with anger, and something else.
"Even if you have his memories, you are not my brother!" He announced. "And they certainly won't stop me from killing you!"
"You can try all you like, but you won't get anywhere. I know all of your moves."
"You know nothing." Ertai growled in the most serious tone of voice he'd emitted yet. With that, he launched himself at Levasos.
"Well, seems it's time I powered up." Levasos observed calmly. He tensed up, and instantly, a blazing fire of cascading colors surrounded him. A display of orange, red, and purple rippled around him, and a howling wind instantly began emanating from him. Ertai was hurled away before he managed to stop himself, hovering in the air. Now, Levasos stretched his right arm upward. "You must allow me to convince you, Ertai!" Ertai coughed roughly a couple times, then turned back to his foe. "Golem Breaker!!"
Schala's trademark beam of lightning and holy energy rushed from the Lavoid's hand. Ertai cast a magical shield in front of him, and cried out in pain as the spell blasted right through it, carving a gaping hole in his chest. Blood ran freely from his mouth, and he fell back to the ground. He was dimly aware of Seraphina charging into action, keeping Levasos distracted. He spit out more blood, trying to get the coppery taste out of his mouth, but it wouldn't go away. As he struggled to concentrate, he muttered thanks that the attack had not touched his heart. He'd be dead now otherwise. Finally, he got the healing spell out, and stood back up.
Just in time to see Seraphina slam into him, sending them flying through the air in a jumbled heap. However, Ertai was somewhat prepared this time. He used to his chi to slowly reduce their speed until they were hovering again. By that point, Levasos was almost a mile away. They had a moment. "Thanks." She rubbed a large bruise on her cheek.
"No problem. What say we take him together?" Ertai got back in his offensive stance.
"Sounds like a plan." She mirrored his movements, and they both jetted forward at lightning speed. Ertai was momentarily thrown out of his rhythm as he coughed again, but he sped back up by the time they were in striking distance of Levasos. As they both curved around to hit him from opposite sides, he suddenly blurred to Ertai's right and landed another kick to the ribs. Ertai went flying into Seraphina, but she managed to twist around as he hit her, so she ended up launching off of Ertai's back, straight at the Lavoid. An actual smile of approval appeared on his lips right before her foot smashed into his face, sending him reeling backward. As he lost his balance, his own foot came flying up, sending Seraphina crashing to the side. He backflipped, and landed lightly on his feet, just in time to see Ertai's knee slamming under his ribs. He skidded back several yards before he managed to stop, and he hunched over, the wind knocked out of him.
That didn't make sense, Ertai belatedly realized as Levasos lurched back up, the back of his head smashing into Ertai's chin. Ertai staggered back, feeling blood running down into his collar. Blood was visible on a few of the spikes of Levasos' head. Ertai felt blood in his mouth again, and was just about to get nailed by a quick hit from the Lavoid, when Seraphina flew into his legs, knocking him down. Both humans immediately jumped on him. Levasos nailed Ertai with a sweeping kick, but found his sternum cracking under the toe of Seraphina's boot. He somehow whirled back to a standing position on his left foot, kicking her away, but Ertai's foot immediately smashed into his ankle, sending the Lavoid crashing back to the floor. The two both whirled to face each other, hands glowing. Seraphina bounded back into the action at the same time. "Flames of Chaos!"
The resulting explosion looked something like three frozen waves bursting into flame, and threw all of them several hundred feet backward. As the dust cleared, the three warriors all found themselves breathing heavily, glancing back and forth between the other two. "Enough of this." Levasos declared.
Ertai laughed. "I know you're used to being omnipotent compared to your opponents, but even so-" Ertai suddenly made a choking sound as Levasos' right hand clobbered him in the back of the neck, dropping him instantly. As she felt the chi backwash from a truly masterful speed boost, Seraphina realized her sword had vanished from the hand she had drawn it with to cast the Cosmic Nova. She blasted toward Ertai, but she could tell it was too late. Ertai flipped onto his front, getting his hands under him so he could push back to a standing position. Levasos struck with her sword, perfectly accurate. The sword sliced throough Ertai ribs and heart, and jabbed on into the ground. Before he even had time to register the pain, Levasos grabbed Ertai's head, and using the sword as leverage, twisted it back until his neck snapped. Levasos dusted his hands off, and turned to Seraphina, his back to Ertai's corpse.
"When you try to battle by the rules, the first one to break them wins." Levasos informed her, looking perfectly calm.
"Then why are you standing here instead of my father?" Seraphina managed to smile dangerously, though she certainly didn't feel it. 'There's no way I can beat him by myself.' She began to step away from him. 'Leng, Habeeb, Moogoo, somebody!' She called out desperately, but there was no response. 'Even father. If you'd just come to your senses...'
But suddenly, as her gaze was fixed on Levasos, she detected movement behind him. As she struggled to keep her eyes from widening, she saw Ertai's right arm slowly curling down and around to his back, shaking badly the whole time. How could he still be alive with a non-functioning heart, a snapped neck, and a pool of blood around him large enough to need a lifeguard? Well, however he was doing it, she had to buy him some time. She held her right arm out, and her sword jerked out of him, then flew to her hand. Levasos raised a spikey eyebrow. "I told your father I wouldn't kill you. Don't make it turn out that I lied to him."
She sneered at him. "Well, thanks to your nifty little mind control, he won't care either way."
Levasos laughed. "My, both of you have made some large assumptions. Gazuga isn't under my control."
"Enough of your mind games!" She snarled. "Let's just get this over with!"
"Oh, I will." Levasos brought his arms forward. "But I'm not lying. Your father is serving me willingly."
"Oooooh!!" She gave an exasperated cry, then fixed her eyes on the blood still dripping from her sword. "Coros guraja aoros!" She swung the sword in a broad arc, and many droplets of blood were hurled through the air. However, instead of gradually falling to the ground, they sped up as they went. As they slammed into Levasos, they erupted into progressively larger explosions, pushing him back more and more, until the final blast sent him flying through the air, digging a trench in the dirt as he landed.
"Very nice!" He smiled enthusiastically as he stood back up. "Very few humans on this planet know about blood magic. I don't understand how you've gotten to be so much stronger than your brothers."
"I don't either." She gritted her teeth.
"Then you're still playing by the rules, Levasos." They both whirled as Ertai's voice reached them. They had both assumed he'd found a way to heal himself, but no, the pool of blood around him was now larger than Seraphina would have believed possible. "There's something you forgot to take into account." Ertai's right hand managed to reach into his combat belt, and he weakly drew out a small vial of liquid. He smashed it on the ground, and was obscured by a cloud of green vapor. As it cleared, his form could be seen standing up. "I have a lot of elixirs."
"How are you still alive?!" Levasos demanded
"You're asking a lot of questions you should know the answers to if you plan on winning this fight." Ertai said smugly. Then, his calm face erupted into rage. "I don't like one hit kills! I'm going to make you pay!! HyaaaaaaaaaaAAAH!!!" Pure white chi-fire erupted around Ertai, veins of lightning magic coursing through it. "So, Grevasos, if you're really as invincible as you want me to believe you are, just stay right there!!" Ertai held his arms perpendicular to his body, and the ground began to shake.
"If all you're going to do is imitate Magus' soul, you won't get very far." Levasos informed him.
"I don't know what you're talking about, but if you think chi is all I'm cooking up here, you're gravely mistaken." Ertai grinned broadly.
Seraphina regarded him for a moment. His eyes had become opaque as he powered up, and were now a solid yellow. Small bolts of electricity curved through his hair, and even his teeth. His hair was spiking straight up as a result. As he continued to gather energy, he looked even less human than Levasos. "This isn't right." She whispered. "This isn't the kind of battle he was meant to fight."
"Now you've both lost me." Levasos said from where she thought he'd been far out of earshot. He crossed his arms. "People with great power are meant to fight any way they can, and win any way they can. If you get all caught up in your weird ideals, you'll lose for sure." Suddenly, the floor lurched violently, before settling back to a steady rumbling much greater than before.
"Better make your peace now, Lavoid!" Ertai shouted at him. "Your time is almost up!" Now, Ertai raised his arms slightly, so they were in a Y shape.
"I am growing tired of your petty attacks!" Levasos shouted back. "This will be your final flash!"
Ertai grinned again. "Not quite, but you're getting warm. Hyah!!" Yellow bolts of lightning began to appear from out of nowhere, and strike his body. His form began to be obscured by the intense energy surrounding him. Suddenly, Ertai felt as if a telepathic voice was entering his head, but it had no source that he could determine. It almost sounded like a radio transmission from far away, full of static and garbled.
'You... oing... o destr... the whole pla... eeet!! Fatheeeeeee... eeeeeer!!!! You've... ot to stop it!!!'
'...unks, ...et's gooooooo!!!'
"I'm in control." Ertai replied to the voice, then at the same time the message in his head culminated in 'Final Flaaaaaash!!!', Ertai unleashed his attack.
"Goodbye Levasos!!! Spirit Flaaaaaaash!!!! Aaaauuuuuuuggggggghhhhhh!!!!!!!" Ertai brought his wrists together, and instantly, a beam of chi easily ten times the size of his body erupted from them, and only increased in size from there. Inside the yellow blast, hundreds of condensed balls of spirit energy danced steadily toward the Lavoid. Levasos brought his arms into a fighting position, but otherwise made no move.
The world turned completely blue as the blast connected with him, before the light from the explosion drowned out all other sights. Ertai threw up shields around himself and Seraphina before they were both lost in the expanding explosion that seemed to take a surprisingly long time. When they could see again, a brilliant yellow light was still rocketing away into the sky. Where Levasos had stood, there was now just a gaping pit they couldn't see the bottom of. A smile lit up Seraphina's face, and she rushed toward Ertai. "Oh, that was amazing!!"
"Quiet!" He hissed, a severe expression on his face. "Can't you feel his chi?" Seraphina stopped in her tracks as she sensed.
"How?" She demanded. "Won't this ever be over? Is he really unbeatable?"
"Hardly." A smile broke out over Ertai's face. "That was just a test to see if my final attack will wor-hurck!" Ertai coughed deeply again, and when he pulled his hand away, spots of blood were plainly visible.
"What's wrong?" Seraphina hurried toward him again. "Didn't the elixir work?"
"No, that's not it." Ertai croaked out tightly as he sank to his knees. He pressed his arms to his stomach. "I'm not feeling so good."
"You're probably tapped out." Seraphina put a hand on his shoulder.
"Not even close." He managed to grin up at her.
"Yes, I suppose it was a bit unsporting of me not to warn you." Levasos' voice reached them. They both snapped their heads around to the source of the sound, and found his head hovering above the pit. Blood was running freely from his scorched neck, but that didn't seem to bother him. Just then, his head seemed to phase out of reality for an instant, and when it returned, it had dragged his vaporised body along with it somehow. "The Lavoid immune system is truly impressive, you know. It can completely eliminate diseases that are quite deadly to humans." Levasos dusted his hands off, and floated back down to the ground. "You're going about this all wrong, you know." Ertai was overtaken with another fit of coughing, but when he was done, he looked up smugly.
"Of course I know. That blast was just a test to see if I was right about something."
"What would that be?"
"This." Ertai smiled. Instantly, Levasos' torso vanished and reappeared about twenty feet away from his legs, both halves spurting blood. The Lavoid screamed with pain before both halves phased out, then reappeared whole again. Levasos actually looked worried now. "I don't like one hit kills, but I owe you one. Besides, you need to be stopped, no matter what." With that, Ertai closed his eyes in concentration.
A moment later, the top half of Levasos' head was floating several feet above the rest of him. The Lavoid's eyes rolled up into his sockets, and his body slumped to the ground. The two halves of the brain floated up to hover in midair, and Ertai continued his telepathic carving. First, the brain was divided into fourths, then eighths, then sixteenths, thirty seconds, sixty fourths, smaller and smaller. A full minute later, when he was done, a light pink dust fluttered to the ground. Ertai slumped over, coughing up more blood. "Do you know... Esuna?" He croaked out.
"No." She shook her head sadly. "Is that really it? Is he really dead?"
He was shivering violently now, but he managed to smile up at her. "Of course, though I'm not particularly proud of the victory." She put her hand on his forehead, and found that he was burning up.
"Come on, I'll take you back to Fervor. They'll be able to cure you." Now, she beamed at him. "And, they'll most likely hail you as a hero. The whole planet will be grateful to you for what you've done."
"Just doing... the right thing." He whispered as he finally allowed his spasming muscles to relax, sprawling in the dirt. "Ugh... You better... hurry."
'Are you now?' The voice entered both their heads. Ertai instantly tried to spring back to his feet, but ended up smashing his face into the dirt, where he coughed again. 'You tried to deprive this universe of its savior! I wouldn't exactly term that the "right thing".'
"HOW?!!" Ertai demanded of the air. The Lavoid's body was still sprawled in the dirt, dust beginning to coat the inside of the empty skull.
'I see Magus must not have told you how he killed my father. Though since he seems to have forgotten himself, that shouldn't be surprising.' Ertai growled, but had no response. 'You are definitely the toughest opponent I've ever faced, and for managing to kill me, in a fashion, I'll allow you to live. Again, in a fashion.' Ertai tried to say something, but just hacked up more blood. 'However, I have no more time to play with you. Begone!'
With that, a Gate appeared in front of them, but quickly expanded to many times the normal size. A howling wind began to blow them toward it. Seraphina had been stunned into silence, but Ertai managed to protest weakly. "Not... fair..."
'No.' Levasos agreed. 'It's not.' Then, they were gone.
"The battle won't end as long as I'm alive." - Treize Khushrenada, Gundam Wing
Chrono Trigger Fanfic