Hero Undone Chapter 1
"You're sure of all this?" Lucca asked Magus, her voice almost shaking.
"I am." He replied flatly.
"How we fight it?" Ayla asked, standing.
"I don't think you'll be fighting anything for a while" Magus said, looking at her belly. Turning to Crono, he asked "Do you feel that? The Black Wind is howling."
"I can, but I have never felt it blow this strong before." Crono answered, and his eyes began to grow wide. "It's getting closer! Everyone arm yourselves. Now!" He yelled, grabbing his katana, the Rainbow, from the table they had set. Lucca drew the Wondershot from the holster on her hip, warily looking around. Marle's Valkerye was off the tree stump next to her and in her hands in an instant, the magic bolts it fired shining in the dark. Frog drew the Masamune, it's blade glowing softly from his proximity to Magus, and got in a battle stance, ready for whatever was coming. Robo stepped in front of Ayla to gaurd her, his right hand sliding down into his arm, a large warhammer extending into it's place.
"Robo, you're upgraded yourself!" Marle exclaimed.
"That's not all...." Robo beeped in response, twin cannons flipping forward from hidden panels in his back to rest on his shoulders, humming with energy. Ayla stepped from behind Robo, patting his shoulder.
"Robo good friend, but Ayla still fight!" she assumed her own battle stance.
"Well, where is it?" Lucca asked after a few seconds had passed.
"Any second now" Magus said, drawing his scythe. It's black blade seemed to absorb the torches' light. He also began to glow with power, his magic skills anxious for a fight.
"I hope you've learned some new spells, Magus." Crono said.
"I have learned a great many things....." Magus responded cryptically, looking past Crono into a large clearing. "There. That's where it will appear." He pointed to the large field behind Lucca's house.
"That field? How can you be-" Lucca was cut off in midsentence as a large yellow gate opened, small bolts of power spewing in all directions. Something stepped through. It was large, seven or eight feet tall by her guess. It's shoulders were broad, and it's arms appeared as thick as tree trunks. The right had something sticking out of it at the forearm, extending over what she guessed was a hand. It was a huge blade, four or five feet long by her guess. It's legs seemed to be just as thick as it's arms. When her gaze reached its head, her heart stopped. Its head resembled soldier's helmet, but the face was smooth, and glowing bright red. The whole thing seemed to glow slightly in the dark of the field. As it came through the Gate, Lucca noticed something else. "It's a....robot?" She asked no one in particular. The thing stopped and stood still in the field.
"The temporal energy from the gate is interfering with my scanners. They cannot get a clear reading." Robo said, "I think we should get a closer look."
"What if it attacks us? What do we do then?" asked Marle, grabbing onto Crono's arm.
"I don't think it will. Look at it, it's not even moving now." Crono reassured her.
"T'would be folly for us all to advance upon this creature. I will go myself." Frog stated with finality, and began to walk towards it, Masamune in hand. "Wait! I'm coming too!" Lucca shouted, running to catch up.
"We should go as well. I don't know how strong this....thing is, only that it is very strong." Crono said, turning to Magus. "They will need us. All of us." Crono turned to Marle, "You ready?" Marle answered "I, I guess so." Her voice shaking slightly as she turned to Robo and Ayla. "Robo, please stay here and protect Ayla for us." "But Ayla want to-", Ayla's protest was cut off by Robo's hand on her shoulder.
"Please. I don't want to see you or your child hurt in any way." Robo pleaded, his eyes blinking brightly. Ayla sat in a chair, her arms crossed and a pout on her face. "Fine." she grumbled.
"Verify time and location." a new but familiar voice said. "And hurry."
"processing..........time/location confirmed. 1003 A.D. Truce Village, Guardia. temporal coordinates 1102.325.1256.65489" a synthesized voice responded, clearly female. "Maybe they're alive. This is the last one. At least that's what he said." the first voice responded.
"proximity alert! proximity alert!" the computer shouted.
"Where? I don't see anything-wait-ohno-Lucca? Is that really her?" the first voice said. "Run a bioscan on her."
"bioscan complete. Lucca Ashtear, identity confirmed" The suit said.
"I wonder why it's just standing there." Lucca said to Frog "Is it malfunctioning or something?"
"We shall soon find out." Frog said, his voice dropping to a whisper. "I think stealth would be to our advantage here." He pointed to himself, then to the small line of trees behind the......robot. Lucca ackowledged his plan with a small nod, and began to move at an angle away from him. Upon seeing thier allies actions, the other three heroes began to spread out as well, although Marle stuck close to Crono.
"She's alive! I must be in the last one, then. What were they doing? Trying to spread out? Who the hell is this Frog-man? I've never seen him before. And why is that one floating? I've only met one person who could do that, and she........." The voice trailed off as memories flooded into his mind. Memories of pain. "No!" the voice screamed. "You can't take her! Bring her back! I swear I'll kill you for this Lavos! You can't leave me! I'll find you! I.....love you." The voice broke down now, sobbing "I......love....you....." The voice was silent as the suit dropped to it's knees, then slumped over onto it's back.
"What just happened? Is it dead?" Marle asked Crono, her voice barely a whisper.
"I don't know, but we better get up there." Crono answered, his pace quickening to a run. He was there in what seemed like no time, joining the others who had gathered around. A few seconds later they all turned as loud, successive thumps were heard approaching, and Robo came bounding into view, Ayla in his arms.
"I was watching." he beeped, setting Ayla down next to him. "Does anyone have an idea what has happened?"
"Not yet, but I will. Can you give me some light here, Robo?" Lucca said, pointing at the robot. He beeped and a floodlight rose from his back, then flashed on, blinding them momentarily."
"Blasted machine." Magus said glaringly at Robo, taking a step towards him.
"It was an accident. I am sorry." Robo beeped in apology, his eyes dimming slightly. "I didn't mean to cause anyone discomfort."
"Don't worry about it, we're all fine. Aren't we, Magus?" Lucca said stepping between Magus and Robo. Magus took a step back and muttered something about machines. Lucca nodded slightly, then knelt down next to the robot. After examining it for a few seconds, her head lifted to Crono. "I don't think this is a robot."
"If it isn't a robot, what is it?" Crono asked, kneeling down next to her.
"I think it's a suit of armor. I don't see any wiring or exposed bolts. Take a look at the plating. does this blue-gray color look familiar? It should." after a few seconds of silence, Frog spoke, his voice either very excited or very nervous, a rarity for the warrior.
"'Tis the same color as Lavos' shell. Doth this mean it 'twas forged from the body of Lavos'?" He asked, his eyes wide.
"That's what I'm thinking," Lucca explained, "but there's more. Look at this" she said, pointing to the massive blade on the right arm. It's blade seemed to flicker in and out of existance. Her head then rose, turning to Frog. "Frog, touch the Masamune to one of the gauntlets." As he lowered the Masamune, parts of the armor began to glow, as did the flickering blade.
"What doth this mean?" He asked Lucca.
"I think parts of this thing are composed of the Mammon Machine. And this blade, it looks almost exactly like the Masamune, just bigger." she answered, and the group fell silent.
A small cry of pain came from the suit, startling everyone.
"Whoever's in there is still alive! We have to get them out, quickly!" Marle said, pulling on the helmet. "This helmet isn't coming off. Crono, help me!"
"Well, at least we're sure it's not a robot." Lucca said, a little dissappointed.
The voice, now clearly a male, was raspy is it's response "Open." Marle jumped away as the suit's helm, now revealed to be composed of many small panels, slid away into the armor, and the armor's chest opened, revealing a man. A very familiar man.
"Crono, 'tis thee inside the suit!" Frog shouted.
It was Crono, but he looked so different. He appeared to be a few years older. His body was larger, more muscular. His hair was much longer, and cascaded down like a river of fire, streaked with black. But his face, it was the most different by far. Even though unconsious, this new Crono's face seemed to be filled with anguish and rage. It looked almost like Magus' face.
Noticing the blood soaking through his tunic, Lucca shouted "We have to get him inside! Magus, you can teleport us back to my workshop, right?"
"Very well, but don't blame me when your house burns down because of him." Magus answered, nodding his head once. After a few quick gestures, Magus, Lucca, the other Crono, and the armor were gone.
After looking at each other for a few seconds, the other five heroes all began to sprint back to the house.
Upon thier arrival, they found this new Crono laid out on a cot, his armor nowhere in sight. All of them gathered around him.
"His wound isn't serious, I think." Marle said, placing her hands by the wound, a puncture to the abdomen. They began to glow slightly as her healing spells began to take effect. The wound closed, and Marle stepped back, small beads of sweat on her brow. "Well, now what?" she asked the group.
"Where's his armor?" Crono asked.
"Magus moved it to the garage. I think it's better to be safe then sorry." Lucca answered. "We don't know if he's friendly or not."
"We should kill him now, before he can do anything." Magus said, walking into the room and drawing his scythe. He raised it, then it fell in a deadly arc.
The Rainbow flashed as Crono brought it up to block Magus' stroke. "No. We keep him here, alive. We can ask him why he's here when, or if, he wakes up." Crono said, locking his sword with the scythe's blade. Everyone was still for what seemed an eternity, then Magus stepped back, lowering his weapon.
"You will regret letting him live. I promise you." he said, his eyes flashing like fire.
"Maybe we will. Maybe we won't. I want to know what happened to him." Lucca said, wringing her hands in thought. "If only we could talk to him, we could find out what ever we wanted."
"That would require telepathy, would it not?" Frog spoke, his voice croaking slightly. "And nary a one among us hath that ability."
"I do." Magus spoke now, stepping toward the second Crono. "I can link my mind to his using my magic." He placed his left hand on the other Crono's forehead, and closed his eyes in deep concentration. "His mind is guarded. All I can find is broken images, fragments of memories.What's this......." His eyes bolted open and he was thrown back several feet. His eyes were wide with shock as he brought his gloved hand before them and saw it was smoking. Smoking with power.
"What? What did you find?" Crono said, tension in his voice.
"Darkness." Magus whispered.
"I thought you liked the d-." Marle started, but his glare quickly shut her mouth and she retreated behind Crono.
"It is more than that. The darkness was overpowering." He pointed at the second Crono, his glove still smoking. His voice was barely audible, but everyone heard his words. "All I could find was darkness. This one is more powerful than all of us combined."
"If he strong, why he come here hurt?" Ayla asked Magus.
"I don't know." Magus told her. "I know he is powerful, but nothing else."
"Then I suggest we guard him until he can answer our questions. Are four hour shifts okay with everyone?" Lucca suggested. The others, even Magus, nodded. "Alright then. I'll go first." she said, sitting in a chair across the room.
"I will be next." Robo beeped. "I will also take Ayla's shift. She needs the rest." his head turned to Ayla. "Is that alright with you?"
Ayla smiled. "Robo nicest rawboot Ayla ever meet!" she hugged him tightly. "Ayla need sleep now."
"Just use the couch in the living room. That goes for all of you." Lucca told them. "My folks left for Medina a few hours ago."
"I shall assume guarding him after Robo. Please awaken me then." Frog croaked and left the room.
"I will stand guard after the frog, then." Magus said, walking to the door. He stopped just outside the room and turned his head back. After a few seconds, he just shook his head and walked down the hall.
"Jerk." Marle said as he left. "I guess I'll be after him. You still have that really comfortable chair in the den, right?" she asked Lucca. "I'll be there if you need me."
"I guess that makes me last." Crono said, kneeling next to the second. "What the hell happed to him?"
"We'll find out when he wakes up." Lucca said. "You'd better get some rest."
Lucca watched Crono leave. She had been attracted to him for years, but she never told him, or anyone else for that matter. She didn't want to jeapordize her years of friendship with him, and now he was getting married to Marle. She had lost her chance with him. Her gaze turned to the unconsious man on the cot. He was Crono, but at the same time was someone else. Just staring at his face, she could almost feel the pain he was in. "I don't know if you can hear me, but I always did love him." She slowly rose and went to the other Crono. As she knelt by him, she brushed his hair away from his eyes. "And now he's marrying her. I like her and all, but I always kind of hoped that it wouldn't work out between them, and I'd have a chance." Why was she doing this? Pouring her soul out to this man, this man who looked almost exactly like her best friend? She stopped herself, and stood again. She put her hand on his head. "I hope you can tell us what's happened to you."
The other Crono lips curled in a small smile as she turned and walked back to her chair.
"Destiny is a game, is it not? And now, you await my latest move."
-Kain, to Raziel, "Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver"
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