The Price for Freedom
Type: Original Stories
Series: Wolf Heart
Succeeding: Hidden Shadows
|Preceded by: |
|The Price for Freedom||Succeeded by: |
What would you do for freedom?
Many would do many things.
But what about the price for freedom?
Many don't often think about that.
Why would we, some of us have longed for freedom.
That's why we fight for it.
Why I fought for it.
The moon shone brightly on the well trodden path, but the forest around it was dark and menacing, while the mountain loomed overhead. A single horse carriage travelled down the path, with the driver staring ahead, trying to ignore the ominous rustling in the forest beside him.
He stopped, and said stiffly, "Sire."
Another man peeked out of the carriage, looking throughly annoyed, and he asked angrily, "Why'd we stop, what's the matter?"
The driver frowned, and said quietly, "It's a couple days time from the mountain base, and the horses need rest, sire."
The man scowled, and receded back into the carriage, the driver stepped onto the ground, and suddenly felt like he was being watched. The horses whinnied nervously. The man looked outside again, and asked impatiently, "What's wrong?"
"It's the horses, my lord." The driver bowed respectfully, and turned back to the horses with a confused look on his face.
The man finally stepped out of the carriage also, and growled dangerously, "We don't have time for this."
"Sorry, my lord, I don't understand why they're so nervous." The driver muttered, and rubbed his hand through his hair.
Meanwhile, nearby, hidden amongst the shadows of the trees, two masked people watched carefully. The other looked at his partner, and nodded.
His partner smiled, sky blue eyes flashing, and sneaked up near where the horses were, they took out two small swords, and eyed the two men arguing.
They slipped up to the ropes binding the horses to the carriage, and casted a dark look at the mountain, and finally cut the horses loose, then retreated back into the bushes. As soon as they were free, the horses broke into a run, both men looked up in shock.
"Hey!" The driver called after his horses, but made no attempt to chase after them, the two masked people returned to the trees to watch as the men argued some more, the blue eyed one casted a smirk at them, and muttered sarcastically, "Can't go no where fast without horses can they?"
The other nodded, and they walked away from the path, ignoring the shouts of the men, and could still hear the stamping of the horses as they retreated from the path.
They walked in silence, stopping by a big house, whose lights were on and music was playing, and they looked at each-other, and nodded. Walking into the house, to be greeted by their friends.
Humans are strange things, I guess, never interacted with one myself, but that's not why I'm here.
I'm Yuna, the old goddess of the moon. I'm here to tell you one simple truth.
Everything here is dangerous, old gods and humans alike.
From what I know from my young years, it started with me and Solaris, the sun god. He didn't always have bad intentions, nor did I see his hidden cruelty, I was blind to that. I was blind to a lot of things I should have seen, even with my sight. I was in the dark.
Then there was Tharas and Garaos, time and balance, Garaos followed Solaris, while Tharas tended to have the same general powers I did, but those two were like brothers, neither of them had bad intentions when we were still in the walking world.
Then there's Orias and Leilas, the storm and the shadows. Both of them were naive, but friendly enough. But where Orias tended to be impatient and unwilling to listen, Leilas usually listened quite well, and had a lot of patience where many did not.
Both of them were tempermental though, and best friends of Tharas, even closer than Garaos was, not that Garaos minded, he cared a great deal for the two.
Those are the important ones of this story, I sensed bad intentions within Solaris, but I could do nothing to warn them, nothing I could do to save from their impending fates.
Back then, I desperately wished I had told them, but I didn't, in hopes Solaris would change his view, but I was wrong.
He never changed.
And fate took over.
Mortals are the most interesting.
They fight for their believes, and never back down.
Orias skirted around the trees, sword in hand. He glanced around at the shadows, a scowl on his face, and he said cooly, "Think you're so smart, Leilas?" He noticed movement come from the shadows, and jumped back as a female blur crashed into him, which caused them both to fall.
Leilas was laughing, "You always notice where I am at the last minute!" She proceeded to poke him annoyingly, while he scowled.
"Stop that." Orias glared at her
"Oh, what are you going to do about it? Make rain fall on me?" She asked sarcastically, eyes blazing, and smirked, then added quickly, "Or make a tree fall on me, who knows with you, if you have anything it's unpredictablity!"
"Don't tempt me." Orias said flatly.
Another voice muttered coolly, "I don't quite understand how you two continue to do this and not attempt kill each-other, you sure are given the oppurtunities to do so."
They both turned to see Tharas, who had his arms crossed, with Garaos laughing behind him. Leilas walked towards Tharas and said, "Orias won't attempt to kill me because he knows it's impossible," she glanced back at Orias, who was staring at them all, and she muttered dangerously, "Isn't that right, wittle Orias can't do anything wifout help." She mocked.
Orias growled, standing up, and Leilas turned to him, smiling widely, and he snapped, "You cheated!"
"I didn't cheat, I just used my powers, nothing wrong with that, you use them too." Leilas laughed playfully.
Garaos snickered, and said coolly, "Watch out Leilas, don't underestimate him."
Leilas made a face at Garaos. He had turned away, trying not to laugh, while Tharas rolled his eyes, and he asked in exasperation, "Now who said what this time?"
Leilas said calmly, "Nothing, Orias just has a short temper and little patience for anything."
Orias huffed, and was about to have another go, when in a flash of calming light, Yuna appeared, and she asked carefully, "What's going on?"
Leilas stiffened, bowing her head deeply to the older god, but Tharas and Orias only raised their eyebrows in confusion, and Garaos also hesitated, then asked respectfully, "What are you doing here, miss Yuna?"
Yuna looked at Garaos with a searching look, while he stared back confused. She muttered grimly, "Solaris wishes to see you back at Azarath, Garaos."
Garaos looked horrorfied, and asked quickly, "Why? I didn't do anything!"
"He didn't specify if you were in trouble, but I wouldn't keep him waiting, just to be sure." Yuna muttered in a reassuring voice.
Tharas looked at Garaos sadly, while Garaos looked at Tharas with a pleading look. Tharas shrugged, and Garaos sighed, then disappeared in a flash of light.
Yuna looked at Leilas, and said softly, "After I'm done here, I also need to talk to you."
Leilas nodded, and backed away, while Orias started to get nervous.
Yuna smiled, and said reassuringly, "Solaris just needed to ask you a favour Orias, nothing more, but since he is too busy, he couldn't come here in person."
Orias sighed, and she continued in a more stiff tone, "Since you live in Hamark, Solaris has been complaining about it more often than he usually does."
Orias asked curiously, "Why? I like Hamark."
"He said not to ask any questions and to do as your told." Yuna said flatly.
Orias made a face, and Yuna nodded to Tharas, and disappeared along with Leilas by shadows.
Orias groaned, sitting back down, and muttered grimly, "What did I do to deserve this?"
Tharas smiled, and said calmly, "Both you and Garaos are thinking the same thing."
Orias sniffed, and grunted darkly, "Who does Solaris think he is? I won't do his stupid favour! That's it."
Tharas frowned, and asked carefully, "What would you think would happen if you intentionally disobeyed him?"
Orias stood up again, and asked hotly, "Since when did you care? You don't listen to him either."
"He never tells me to do anything for one, and he knows how to get to you, Orias, you know what he's like, especially." Tharas pointed out, and rolled his eyes.
Orias growled, and looked at Tharas, and he asked carefully, "What are you going to do then?"
Tharas said calmly, "I've got stuff to do myself, you better get going."
Tharas also disappeared, and Orias huffed.
Some help Tharas is. Why do I end up in these situations? Stupid Solaris, some day someone's going to get tired of him. Orias thought, and looked around, and walked away from the clearing where he and Leilas fought, and growled, "I'm not little, don't know where her mind is." He crossed his arms.
He blinked and found himself in his home, Hamark. It was quite a nice place, with pine forests and small towns, the mortals tended to be fiery but loyal, but Orias had to keep to himself, mortals tended to be afraid of old gods, or disbelieving.
Orias walked around one of the towns, keeping his head down, and saw a man hassling and arguing with another man, he frowned, That's different... He thought darkly.
He walked into a large house on the outskirts of the town, there was a lot more people in here than usual, he sat down, and was greeted by the nice lady that owned the place.
"Nice to see you again, Orias." She muttered gently.
"Hi Gwen." Orias muttered back, Gwen knew what he was, but she had kept quiet.
Gwen smiled, and went to help someone else, while Orias scanned the place. He noticed some black cloaked people in the corner of the room, talking in hushed whispers.
He stared at them, and he heard their voices.
"Bandits on the road yesterday, didn't steal anything, only cut the horses free, the king is curious as to why this had happened, had to walk all the way back home, don't know what happened to the driver though." The man muttered to his companions.
Orias was distracted by the door opening allowing the wind to blow inside, he looked up, and saw a woman. She had pitch black hair and sharp sky blue eyes, Orias stared as she walked into the building, and also looked around. She saw the cloaked men, the other two stared at her, and left hastily, trying to avoid her gaze out of fear.
The other man looked like he was about to stand up, except when she walked over, he sat back down again, albeit begrudgingly, and he asked grimly, "What do you want now?"
She raised an eye-brow, sitting down also, and she muttered dangerously, "You know what I want."
"Right, like you're going to get it." He snapped.
She sighed, and said coolly, "Don't make this harder then it needs to be.'
Orias watched with interest as the man stood up, she stood up also, and in a flash the man was on the ground, being held there by her standing on him. She growled, "I don't want this to get into a fight, this is a nice place, the only place I am able to call home, don't want you lot to ruin it now, do we?"
He growled, rolling out from underneath her, and he snapped, "Be careful of how you talk, miss, we don't want you getting hurt."
She laughed, and said sarcastically, "I'd be more worried about you getting hurt, sir."
He ran at her, but she just side stepped, taking out two small swords, and punched him hard in the shoulder, causing him to recoil.
Everyone that was watching gasped, backing away, Orias stared intently, curious as to why she wasn't using the blades in the usual way.
The man stood up again, rubbing his shoulder, but he looked furious. He walked towards the woman, who looked faintly surprised, but she smiled, "You really want me to punch your other shoulder so that's useless too?" She asked cheerily.
The man stopped midstep, and finally backed into the crowd, who was watching her also. She turned to Gwen, and said gently, "I'm sorry for the mess." She walked out of the tavern, rolling her eyes as she went, sheathing the small blades.
Orias didn't know why, but he followed her out, and ran to catch up with her, and he called, "Hey wait!"
When he was right behind her, he gasped when he felt hands grab him, and he felt himself going upside down. He soon found himself on the ground, staring up at the women, who asked darkly, "What is it?"
"Uh, I-I saw you fight back there, I got to admit, that was impressive." Orias muttered, not getting up.
"What's so impressive about it? That guy is all bark and no bite, couldn't hurt a fly even if he wanted too." She grunted flatly, staring down at Orias.
"No, I mean, the way you fought, usually when someone's holding swords, they try to slash at their opponant, not knock them out." Orias said quickly.
"Because that's not what these little ones were made for," she took out the small swords with a thoughtful look on her face. She added, "Well, yes, they can be lethal, if you use them correctly, but they an also be used for defence, again, used correctly."
Orias asked curiously, "Where'd you learn to do that?"
She smiled, and said, "Hm, my home."
Orias just watched as she allowed him to stand up, and she said, "Well, whoever you are, I need to go, important stuff to do."
Orias turned to watch her as she left, and he looked up at the growing night sky. He walked down a different route from the woman, and soon felt like he was being watched. He looked around, then ignored it.
I've never seen a mortal like her before... Orias thought.
He saw a flash of movement, and braced himself as Leilas jumped at him, sword in hand. He blocked the attack, and Leilas asked in a mocking tone, "Why you look so thoughtful, Orias, did wittle Orias find something Solaris would like to know?"
Orias pushed her back, and snapped, "What's it to you, Leilas?"
Leilas smirked, and said quietly, "You know what Solaris will do if you keep things from him. He's not the forgiving type."
"I know that, thanks." Orias muttered darkly.
Leilas pointed out, "Yet you seem intent to hide things from him."
"Why do you care what he does to me?" Orias asked suspiciously, and narrowed his eyes.
Leilas hesitated, and made a face, "Well, I-I don't care, but what about Tharas, hasn't he warned you about Solaris, he does care a lot for you, contrary to your belief." She pointed out carefully carefully.
Orias nodded, and Leilas said calmly, "Well you need someone to watch out for you, because you're the leap before you think type of person."
"I'm sure Tharas knows I can take care of myself." Orias muttered flatly.
"Sure you can, Orias." Leilas muttered, and grabbed his arm. Orias stared at her, and jumped when darkness entered his vision.
"What the heck, Leilas?!" Orias snapped.
They both landed in the Lower Spirit World, and Leilas had her arms crossed. Orias looked around, and asked, "Why'd you bring me here?"
Leilas whispered, "Well, Yuna told me something really important, but it's best I tell you and Tharas together so one doesn't end up getting behind the times," she eyed Orias, and added flatly, "Or is too busy making friends with mortals."
Orias rolled his eyes, and followed her.
Leilas asked, "Want to know what I think is happening in Hamark?"
Orias sniffed, and she continued, "Tension. Mortals hold dear to their lives."
"Is that what you think?" He growled, remembering what the woman had said to the man she fought, What did she want? He thought curiously.
Orias jumped when Tharas appeared from no where, and he snapped, "I hate it when you do that! The both of you!"
Tharas smiled, and asked gently, "Leilas, what is it?"
"Well, it's two things, first, Yuna wanted me to warn you about Solaris, she says something about him is changing." Leilas said quietly, with a hint of nervousy in her voice as she looked up at Tharas. Tharas stared back down at her.
He asked quietly, "What's the second thing?"
Leilas glanced at Orias, and she said darkly, "Tell him about the fight you witnessed in that building."
Orias looked at Tharas, who looked back at him with a flat look, and Orias shrugged, "Nothin' 'bout it, mortal fight."
Leilas smirked, and she said in an almost sad tone, "You're hiding stuff, as usual, Orias, I meant everything. Including the mortal you talked to after the fight."
"What about her?" Orias snapped.
Tharas asked carefully, "Is there something wrong?"
Orias hesitated under Tharas's sharp gaze, and Leilas continued, "The thing is, Orias, Yuna saw that mortal in a vision, of course, she was cagey about it, like something was a bit off," she looked at Tharas, and said, "She wouldn't tell me everything, she says the spark happening in Hamark has something to do with the mortal."
Tharas asked flatly, "Who was the mortal, Orias?"
"I don't know, she didn't tell me her name when we talked, and she disappeared as fast she appeared, you'd think she and Leilas were best friends." Orias muttered, eyeing Leilas.
Leilas snapped, "This is important, Yuna was worried, and she's never this worried, she wants you to really look into this Orias, this is your home, do something about it!"
Orias frowned, and said in a growl, "Fine, whatever, I can't promise anything thought, I get the feeling she wouldn't tell me just like that."
"Then be creative, Orias," Leilas scowled, "You're the one of storms and memories, I'm sure you can figure something out."
Orias crossed his arms, and looked from Leilas to Tharas. Leilas rolled her eyes, and Orias gasped as she put him in a headlock, and she smiled, "Of course, I'm sure wittle Orias will be able to do it wifout our help~"
Orias growled, "Let go'f me."
Leilas let go of him, and he rubbed his head, she said, "I've got stuff to do for Yuna, see you two later." She waved at Tharas, and glanced at Orias, and disappeared in the shadows.
Orias stared back at Tharas, and he said grimly, "Girls."
Tharas nodded, and he asked curiously, "So, what are you going to do about Hamark?"
Orias sighed, and said, "I have no idea," he looked back at Tharas, and added quickly, "But I'll figure something out!"
Tharas sighed, and said quietly, "Just be careful, Solaris is getting-"
Orias interrupted him, and growled, "I can handle Solaris."
Tharas rolled his eyes as Orias turned away from him, and walked away from Tharas. He closed his eyes, and soon found himself back where he met Leilas, he looked around, hearing shuffles in the bushes. He stopped, and asked quietly, "Who's there?"
There was no answer, he frowned, and continued walking along the path, eyeing the shadows. This isn't funny Leilas...
He looked into the distance, and saw two shapes, they didn't see him yet, but he hesitated, walking at a slower pace. But he heard them, the man beside the other person was near yelling. Orias decided to ignore them though, and continued walking.
But he jumped when the other person turned to look at him, they narrowed their eyes behind the mask, but suddenly stared behind him.
He looked back to, but when he turned to look back at the other one, they were already up at him, he closed his eyes suddenly, and felt a rush of air, and opened his eyes again to find both him and the person were in the forest beside the path, and the person looked stunned.
"What was that?!" He asked, standing up.
The masked person looked up at him with flaming sky blue eyes, he froze, and thought, I've seen those eyes before...
She took off her mask, and looked around. She scowled, looking back up at him, and asked, "How did we get here? What was that? I thought I saw something behind you, but when I got up to you, I just saw a flash of light and now we're here."
Orias stared at her, unsure of what to say, so she stood up, and she asked, "How did you do that?"
"Did what?" Orias asked.
She snarled, and said dangerously, "I saw that flash of light, I'm not blind. Whoever you are." She took a step toward him.
Orias asked cooly, "Why? Have you seen it before?"
She hesitated, glancing around quickly, and said quietly, "Not like that no, who are you anyways?" She asked with narrowed eyes.
Orias looked at her skeptically but she didn't change her stance, and he asked quietly, "Well, what do you think? Do you think I'm 'human'?"
She narrowed her eyes furthur, and asked back, "I have no idea, why wouldn't you be human?"
"Would I be human if I could do what just happened back there?" Orias asked quietly, She's not going to trust me if I'm not honest...
She raised an eye-brow, and she said, "Let's assume I think you're something... Otherwordly, humour me," she smiled, "Not many otherworldly beings around in this world."
Orias frowned, and said cooly, "Well, I'm definately not a mortal, that's for sure."
She said coldly, "I got that."
Orias stared at her, and said, "Well, you've heard of the old gods right?"
She raised an eye-brow, and asked cooly, "Maybe, why do you ask?"
"I'm one of them." Orias said flatly. Solaris forbade us from telling people we were old gods for reasons that we didn't figure out, he was sure clear on what the punishment was...
She said nothing, and narrowed her eyes, "Why should I believe you, olds gods don't usually come out like this, do they?" She asked carefully.
"Um no, more for a reason that one of the oldest gods forbade us from speaking to mortals, I don't know why." Orias said, slightly confused.
She crossed her arms, and said in an almost sarcastic voice, "Right... Because us 'mortals' sure can't handle the information, we've heard of the old gods. It's hard not to hear of them, legends, stories, and myths." There was a slight brightness to her eyes as she said that.
Orias asked, "So you don't believe me?"
"Not really." She shrugged.
"Right, so back there was just a spontanous transportation?" Orias asked quietly.
She stared at him, and said flatly, "I don't know what it was, not going to lie though, I'm not sure what to believe, I've got more on my mind then stories and myths."
Orias blinked, and asked, "Then why won't you believe me?" He frowned, and added cooly, "For a mortal, you're awfully stubborn then the usual one."
She laughed, and said, "As I said, I find it hard to believe old gods would just come out and say 'I'm an old god watch me do amazing powers!' right." She rolled her eyes.
Orias smiled, and said, "If anything, I like your sense of sarcasm..."
She raised an eye-brow, and said cooly, "I like your sense of humour, but I still don't believe you."
Orias sighed, "I didn't expect you to, honestly."
"Honestly? That's a new one." She muttered, a slight soft tone in her voice.
Orias smiled, "I'm known for being brutally honest, mortal."
The soft edge in her voice was gone, and she said coolly, "Why do you keep calling me mortal?"
Orias growled, "That's what you are, would you rather I call you something else, I never did catch your name the first time we met." He kept her gaze.
She looked at him thoughtfully, and said coolly, "Yeah, my name is Theria, mister 'I'm an old god' don't you forget it."
Orias smiled, "Ouch, okay, Theria what will it take for you to believe me?"
Theria got another thoughtful look on her face, and stared up at the sky, and said, "Who knows, maybe sometime I'll believe, maybe you'll do something really impressive that will show you that you're really telling the truth, but today is certainly not that day," she lowered her voice, "It's hard to believe after all the lies I've heard these days in Hamark."
Orias laughed, and said, "This is why I make my home in Hamark, you mortals are so fiery."
Theria smiled, "Thanks for the compliment, whoever you are."
"Orias, my name is Orias." He said quietly.
Theria's blue eyes flashed, and said, "Reintroduction of me then, I'm Theria, and I'm from the acropolis of Guagamela, or as some people here in Hamark call it, The White City." She nodded to the mountain looming over them.
"So you're from the White City?" He asked carefully.
Theria nodded, and said, "I guess it was nice when I was younger but you get bored of it quickly, just a bunch wind bursts, and that's the most exciting thing that happens, really."
Orias said nothing as she continued, "But of course, if I didn't have a reason for leaving, I wouldn't have."
"You had a reason to leave?" Orias asked curiously.
"I'm sure you saw what happened at Gwen's place?" Theria asked in a careful voice.
"You put another mortal in his place, so what?" Orias asked.
Theria frowned, and said calmly, "It's a lot more than that. Orias."
"Well, what is it then? As much as you're fiery, you don't seem to be the type to start beating on people just for the fun of it." Orias said flatly.
She smiled, "Nah, that's only sometimes," she added, "But seriously, no, he had it coming to him, but I actually didn't want to hurt him, even if it came down to it, but I had no choice."
"What's the reason then?" Orias asked.
She stared up at him as the stars shone brightly overhead.
Sometimes that's a hard question to answer.
Orias waited for Theria to answer, and she said quietly, "Well, the reason being is, not many people here like being... Controlled, if you get what I mean," she sighed, "See, most people are too afraid to say anything, to stand up for themselves, then there's the few are brave enough to do something about it, a lot of good it does them though," she stared up at him, then growled dangerously, "Then there's some people, like that man at Gwen's place, who'd rather see us controlled for their own benefit."
"What do you mean by that?" Orias asked carefully.
She looked around, and said, "People are dying because of this, Orias, I'm not sure you would understand about human conflicts, and most human conflicts are caused because of the old gods, different opinions, stuff like that, but this one is different."
Orias flinched at that, and she said quickly, "Not that I think it's the old gods fault... Well okay, sometimes it is the old gods fault, but no. This little inside conflict is about something else, nothing to do with the old gods."
"So, what were you doing with that other mortal, and why were you masked?" Orias asked cautiously.
Theria frowned, and said, "Well, I said there's few brave enough to do it, but so many people are dying, we decided to hide, I guess, well, I didn't decide, I prefer face to face, but..." She faltered, looking around.
"What's wrong?" Orias looked around also.
"Someone's coming!" She gasped, standing up, pushing Orias into the shadows, and sat back down. Orias ducked under a branch, and looked at Theria confused, but she just gave him a look that told him to be quiet. He nodded, and she sat back down calmly, as if there was no one else there.
Soon, the person that was with her arrived, and he asked curiously, "Theria, you okay?"
"Yeah," Theria muttered something Orias didn't catch, or couldn't understand, and she stood up, "Should we continue?"
Her friend looked at her disbelievingly, but shrugged, and nodded. "Let's go, then." The mortal muttered quickly, and walked away.
Theria however glanced at Orias, and smiled, and walked away, while Orias just sat there, confused. He jumped when something grabbed him from the shadows, and rolled his eyes as his vision went black. He regained vision to find himself somewhere else, with Leilas glaring down at him, blue fire in her eyes.
"Uh oh." Orias murmured, not daring to move, I've never seen Leilas this livid, what the-?
He rolled away when her sword came down at him, and she snapped, "What were you thinking?!"
"What do you mean what was I thinking?!" Orias snapped back, dodging another swipe, and bringing out his own sword.
"You know Solaris means what he says! If he finds out you told a mortal what you are, you're finished, he'll destroy you, Orias!" She snarled, swiping at him.
He dodged that one also, and snapped, "I had no choice, you told me to find out what was wrong, and I did, you're welcome!"
"I told you to be careful and listen to Yuna's warning, oh my gods, if her vision comes true, this will be all your fault!" She snarled, pushing Orias.
Orias stopped, and stared, and muttered, "I hadn't thought about it like that..."
"Of course, you never think rationally Orias." Her voice had quieted down, but she continued to scold him.
"I'm sorry." Orias said cooly.
"No you're not." She snapped, and headed towards him, he was ready to jump back in case she had another attack, but the attack never came. She hugged him tightly instead, and she growled, "Why can't you learn to just be careful sometimes?"
Orias said nothing as she let go of him, and she turned away, growling, "Now, how to cover this whole thing up before Solaris finds out."
"Wait, I don't need-" Orias muttered.
"Oh yes you do need help with this Orias, especially mine, I can hide your tracks for a while, but Tharas isn't going to be happy either, actually, he might get you before Solaris, we're all going to have a good laugh then." Leilas muttered, and smiled in an almost gentle way.
Orias only nodded in defeat, and Leilas murmured, "But how, I mean, after Tharas completely ruins you, I'm sure he'll help, being how he is. Maybe Garaos can keep Solaris distracted, but who knows for how long, Garaos is terrified of Solaris, going to take some convincing."
"What about Theria?" Orias asked suddenly.
"What about her?" Leilas asked suspiciously.
"Isn't she in danger as well?" Orias asked.
Leilas laughed, "Even if she was, she's very capable of taking care of herself, you've seen her power and capabilities, which is almost impressive for a mortal, mortal strength is pretty awesome when it's in the right people, and if they know exactly how to use it." She said calmly.
Orias just stared as she continued, "We also better not tell Yuna about this either, she probably already knows, but she's not one to get after people, she's a lot more passive though."
Orias wanted to say something, but didn't get the chance as she continued planning, "But, if Solaris finds out, who knows what will happen..." She murmured.
"Leilas." Orias growled.
"What?" She turned around.
"Relax, you're giving me a head-ache, and making me nervous." Orias growled, and crossed his arms.
Leilas frowned, and said, "Sorry, but you know what will happen if Solaris finds out."
"Yeah..." Orias murmured, Solaris isn't the type to be forgiving, let alone to go back on a promise, he may have not said the actual words, but he did make it clear what would happen if we ever told a mortal what we are...
Leilas sighed, and said, "Let's go find Tharas then."
"Wait, what?" Orias asked, horrified.
"Yeah, you heard me, we have to find him he's going to find out anyways. Might as well get it over with" Leilas muttered, and soon Orias's vision went black again, and after a second had gone by, they were in the lower spirit world. He tipped his head, confused, but said nothing as they walked.
"Tharas, are you there?" Leilas called to the darkness.
"Yes, what is it?" Tharas asked from no where.
Leilas eyed Orias, but Orias noticed she had a worried gaze, and said loudly, "We have a major problem!"
Tharas said nothing, and soon he came out of the shadows, and asked, "What type of problem?"
"Orias told a mortal what he was, the very mortal Yuna saw in her vision." Leilas said quickly.
Tharas turned to look at Orias, and he asked in confusion, "Why?"
"She wasn't going to trust me if I wasn't going to be honest with her." Orias said coolly, holding Tharas's strict gaze.
"You and honesty," Leilas snarled, rolling her eyes, "Honesty is what's going to get you killed, Orias." She said darkly, her eyes flashing.
Tharas looked on thoughtfully, and muttered, "Well..."
"Well what?" Leilas and Orias both asked.
"Well, for one, does Solaris know?" Tharas asked carefully, then added, "Because, if he doesn't, as long as we act more cautiously, he doesn't have to know."
Leilas asked softly, "But what if he does find out, Tharas? He will eventually... He always finds out."
Tharas frowned, and turned to look at Orias, Leilas followed his gaze, and stared at him with a flat expression, but there was no mistaking the hidden fear in her gaze. Orias looked at both of them, and said sharply, "Don't look at me like that, you're both making me nervous."
"If he finds out, then we're just going to have to improvise." Tharas growled.
"We might not have time for that, Tharas..." Leilas's voice strained.
"I can deal with Solaris myself!" Orias snapped.
"Yeah right, you can't even retaliate when a mortal throws you on the ground with no trouble at all," Leilas growled, staring back at him, "He'll do a lot more then what she did, and Solaris won't let you get away without some sort of mind game."
Orias growled, "I'm not afraid of him."
"Have you looked at Garaos lately? He's a wreck! He's older then you, been at this longer then you, and just hearing Solaris's name absolutely terrifies him." Leilas snapped back, "You should see him sometimes, sometimes he doesn't look like he's in his right mind, Solaris doesn't need physical strength when he can mess up your mind."
Tharas stepped in between them, and said quietly, "It's not really a good idea to fight here, or have you both forgot?" He stared down at them, and indicated around them.
Leilas and Orias looked away from each-other. Tharas smiled, "Listen you two, we'll figure this out." He said calmly.
Leilas nodded quietly, while Orias just stared up at the sky, and Tharas said quietly, "I've got stuff to do, try not to kill each-other while I'm gone."
He disappeared, and Leilas eyed Orias. Orias just turned to her, and asked carefully, "Are you going to ignore him?"
Leilas frowned, and growled, "No, I'm not, are you?"
Orias frowned also, looking down at the ground, unsure of what to say. He noticed Leilas move, and looked back up. She had her arms crossed, and asked, "So, how are you going to fix this mess?"
"What do you mean?" He murmured.
"Solaris is going to find out, and before he does, you have to fix this." Leilas said in a hurried tone.
Orias asked, "And what if I just want to face him?"
"Then that's your problem, I'm going to help you, but I'm not helping you fix this, I'm just covering for you, because I don't want to see you get hurt." Leilas growled.
Orias just stared at her, and she sighed, "You do know Solaris will find out, and who knows what he will do, but he's made it clear what will happen," she lowered her voice, "Have you ever been in the far lands?"
Orias flinched, and said coldly, "Once, I hated it though, something about that place feels extremely wrong, like something isn't quite right with that place. Last time I went in there, felt like I was losing my mind, don't understand how you and Garaos can stand that place."
Leilas frowned, "Yes, you, Yuna, and Tharas can't stand that place, I'm worried Solaris might use that weakness against you." She said quietly.
Orias frowned also, and he looked back at Leilas when she asked, "You've seen them stand up for what they believe in?"
"Seen who?" Orias asked curiously.
"Mortals, sometimes I don't understand where they get the strength of purpose and mind, how they learn to live like they do, even if they're not immortal," she added in hushed voice, "How they can find something worth living their short life for..."
Orias looked away from her, remembering what Theria had said, I don't understand it either... Their endurance is amazing, almost unnatural, even for their short lives.
"But you've talked with a mortal." Leilas pointed out, Orias rolled his eyes, Leilas could read minds, it was kind of uncomfortable, "What was she like?" Leilas asked carefully.
"She... Was different, from the other mortals I've seen, almost unnatural, I've never seen her type of ability, it's impressive. She told me that some mortals are too afraid to stand up for what they believe in, and for those that actually did stand up for themselves..." Orias faltered, and looked down at the ground.
"What did you think of her?" Leilas pushed on.
Orias eyed her, and asked cautiously, "Why?"
Leilas smiled, and said cooly, "Just curious."
Orias frowned, "I was surprised that all she is... Is a mortal," he looked up at the sky of the lower spirit world, "Solaris tells us, that mortals aren't a big deal. Insignificant. Aren't anything special, but after meeting Theria, I'm starting to think that there's something more to them, something that we can't understand, being immortal. That Solaris is wrong."
Leilas frowned, and also looked up at the sky.
They both jumped when there was a sudden noise that sounded like a low hiss, and Leilas hissed, "Time to go!"
Orias gasped when Leilas pulled him away from the sound, and Leilas growled, "Why is it whenever Tharas leaves, spirits finally take their chance to attack?"
"Because they're scared of him?" Orias murmured jokingly.
"Now is not the time to joke, Orias." Leilas growled.
Orias made a face, and asked cooly, "How do you even know it's spirits?"
Leilas hesitated, and Orias stared as she her cool gaze turned to a look of horror. He flinched when she suddenly turned to him, and his vision went black.
Orias opened his eyes to find he was on the ground, and he growled, "Where did you drop me, Leilas?"
He rolled over, and got up, he looked around for any sign of Leilas. He called, "Leilas, are you there?" He frowned when there was no answer from the shadows.
He held his head, which felt like it was throbbing, and thought, What was that all about?
Orias looked up at the sky, he didn't realise how much time had passed, the moon was high above, while the northern lights were streaking ahead, but there was also dark gray storm clouds, and he murmured, "Leilas must have taken me back to Hamark... But..." He faltered, looking around again.
I have no idea where I am... Orias thought, turning around in a circle, and tried looking for the large mountain.
"Lost something, Orias?" A cold voice asked.
Orias whipped around, pulling out his sword, he asked cautiously, "What?"
"You seem like you've lost something." The cold voice said in a too sweet voice.
He jumped when a mist like figure walked out of the bushes, it was Solaris, with his blonde hair streaked with grey, and piercing amber eyes. Orias narrowed his eyes, and asked curiously, "What are you doing, so far from Azarath, Solaris?"
"Well, I was just minding my own business, when Yuna starts worrying over little Orias and Leilas..." He said, shrugging his shoulders, "She said that they were both in danger."
Solaris looked at him unexpectedly, but Orias only stared at him, and he smiled, "I thought you didn't like being called little, Orias." He said dangerously.
"I don't." Orias growled.
"Then, why don't you say something?" Solaris asked.
"Because why bother saying it, you already know what I want to say." Orias growled.
Solaris smiled, and took out his own sword, and he said calmly, "I just want to ask you a couple questions, then you may go, however, if you refuse to talk, well, you know the consequence." He murmured quietly.
Orias narrowed his eyes, and Solaris asked, "I want to talk to you especially, since you're always honest, have you talked to mortals in this land lately? Very fiery these days."
"Sometimes, why?" Orias asked.
"Hm, the thing about you, you do tell the truth, but you always hide things, but maybe not this time, someone told me something interesting," Solaris said quietly, and smiled, "Have you been telling a mortal what you are?" He asked curiously.
Orias stared at him, and Solaris knew he had him cornered, "Hm, you do not say anything, but... I can't do anything without proof." He said coldly.
Orias frowned, and Solaris said calmly, "Well, I could ask the mortal, but that'd be kind of odd."
Orias flinched, he shuffled on the spot, and said in a cool voice, "Well, you could do that."
Solaris glared at him, and said quietly, "Do you know what mortals will do for their freedom? What they will do, to save their own lives? You may think of them fondly, but if faced with the right danger, they would forget their friends, it's actually quite quaint in a way."
Solaris smiled darkly, "Don't think I know of your little friend, what did she tell you, and what did you tell her?" He pointed the sword at Orias.
Orias stared at the sword, and said, "She only told me that the reason there was a whole lot of fighting in this land, is because people hated being controlled, you did tell me to find that out."
Solaris smiled, "Right, you don't like being controlled either, Orias, with your impatience and hot temper, you don't exactly do as your told, even when you clearly know the consequences." He said coolly.
Orias asked darkly, "What is that supposed to mean?"
"Well, as I said, I don't exactly have proof you told a mortal about the old gods, but someone else does, and does exactly what she's told." Solaris smiled, and beckoned to the shadows.
Leilas came out, looking like she was being forced, and Solaris turned to her, "Of course, you two may fight, but you are like brother and sister, I'm sure if the other was in danger, the other would do something about it." Solaris growled.
Leilas growled back, "I have no idea what you're talking about."
Solaris smiled, and turned to Orias, "Now that my point has been proven, it'd be pointless to hurt Leilas, she's innocent, and so are you in a way." He said cooly.
Orias stared at Leilas in horror. But she shook her head with flat eyes, he heard her voice in his mind, I know what you think of Theria, tell Solaris, and you'll just be putting her in unneeded danger, this is why I told you to be cautious.
Orias frowned, as Solaris took a step toward him, and said coldly, "I know of Yuna's vision."
"Who doesn't." Orias asked, his eyes flashing in anger.
Solaris finally frowned, his sword at the ready, "I don't wish to hurt either you or Leilas, but neither of you will talk, if mortals know who we are, the whole of our world is in danger." He growled
Orias looked at Leilas in alarm, but she shook her head.
Orias jumped when there was a flash of bright silver heading toward him, and he turned to face Solaris.
Solaris smiled, and whispered dangerously, "There's always a price for freedom, Orias, but mortals don't, or don't care to see it, I guess you can see it, but refuse to accept it."
Orias noticed Leilas move towards him quickly, without Solaris noticing, when Solaris finally noticed, Leilas had pushed him away from Orias, who flinched when the sword went with Solaris. Leilas turned quickly before Solaris could react, and grabbed Orias, and both of them disappeared into the shadows.
Orias and Leilas landed, Leilas looked around quickly, and sat Orias against a tree, and she asked, "Are you okay?"
"Does it look like it?" Orias rasped, still bleeding from the wound.
"I should have seen that coming, Solaris heard a bit of our conversation." Leilas growled, but Orias didn't seem to hear her.
He stared at the trees, his vision all blurry, and he said quietly, "Leilas, we don't-"
Leilas stared at him, and looked horrified, "Oh, uh, I don't know a thing about medicine, only Tharas and Garaos do." She said quickly, looking around.
"Then get one of them..." Orias said quietly.
"Who knows how long that would take." Leilas said quickly, looking around.
"Tharas will answer to you, Leilas." He faltered
"But..." She faltered, and her face brightened, "I'll be right back!"
"Hey, don't leave..." But it was too late, and Orias finished huffingly, "Me here..."
He sat there for what seemed like an hour, his vision had somewhat darkened when Leilas had came back, but she was a blur and so was the person with her.
You still with me, Orias? Leilas asked, but her voice seemed distant.
Kind of... He faltered.
Okay, we don't have much time, don't worry. Leilas muttered softly.
Who did you bring with you? Orias asked quietly.
Oh, a friend of yours. Leilas said in a matter of factly tone.
"Here." He heard Leilas's voice, he narrowed his eyes, and could somewhat see clearly, and Leilas was pushing a cup toward him, a bit forcefully, and he flinched, "Don't rush me." He growled.
"Still hot tempered, even when in that state." Leilas said jokingly.
He took a drink of it, and felt his vision clear somewhat, and he looked at the two people looking at him.
The person Leilas had retrieved, it was Theria.
"Why did you bring her, Solaris could be..." He flinched as he tried to get up.
"Don't rush yourself, sheesh, are all of you this impatient and rushy?" Theria asked, her arms crossed. But there was a hint of gentleness in her eyes. "If I can take you off guard, I'm not that surprised that you ended up this way, from what Leilas told me." She crouched toward him in concern.
Orias eyed Leilas, who said, "Once you're feeling well enough to walk, I'll get you to Tharas, I got Theria cause she was closest, and for a second, you were on the edge of death, Tharas would have known, and well..." Leilas faltered.
She fell silent, and Orias looked down at the ground, but Theria looked at them both, confused, and asked, "If you don't mind my curiousity, what would have happen if... Your friend knew what happened?"
Orias looked back up at Theria, who seemed honestly concerned, and he said quickly, "You should get back home, it's dangerous."
"Right, haven't been in danger ever since I left the mountain." Theria said sarcastically, rolling her eyes. But she smiled, and punched Orias gently on the shoulder, and said softly, "I'll be careful if you'll be, I don't want to be scared out of my wits by Leilas appearing from no where again."
Leilas smiled sheepishly, and bowed to Theria, "I can't thank you enough Theria, it'd be boring without Orias around." She murmured softly.
Theria acknowledged the bow, and smiled swiftly, and left quickly.
"Shouldn't you follow her to make sure she's safe?" Orias asked, but his vision was a bit blurry, and Leilas helped him up.
"I'd be more worried about you, you heard her, you're not out of the woods yet, what she gave you, it only gives you a bit of time." Leilas muttered.
They disappeared into the shadows, and soon they were on top of the mountain in the middle of the four lands, where Tharas lived.
Leilas knocked on the door, and she snapped, "Tharas!"
They jumped when there was a voice behind them, and he asked curiously, "Trying to knock down the door or something?"
They turned, Orias flinched, and Tharas was standing there, with his arms crossed.
Leilas looked at Orias, but didn't say anything, and Tharas asked, "What happened?"
"Solaris happened." Leilas snarled.
Tharas looked confused, then opened the door, allowing Leilas to go inside, and she asked as Tharas followed them in. "Heard from Garaos?"
"I'm here, what up?" Garaos rounded the corner, eating some bread, but stopped in his tracks when he saw Orias, eyes wide.
"Ouch, what happened to him?" Garaos asked quietly.
Leilas eyed Garaos, and said darkly, "You should know, who do you think?"
She layed him down on the couch, Orias said cheerily in an attempt to lighten the mood, "Hello Garaos, how are you?"
"I'm fine." Garaos said in a confused tone.
Leilas turned to Garaos, and said quickly, "You're the healer, both you and Tharas, I have no idea what to do."
Garaos stared at her, and shrugged, "Sure, but you know, if Solaris meant to kill, Orias would have been dead already." He muttered, and looked at Leilas.
Orias growled, "That makes me feel loads better."
"Sorry." Garaos smiled sadly.
Orias glared at Leilas as Garaos turned to Tharas, who shrugged.
Leilas smiled eerily, and Garaos disappeared into one of the rooms. Orias hesitated when he heard a sort of light buzzing noise, and he asked, "Hey, hear that?"
"Hear what?" She asked carefully.
Orias looked around, the light buzzing noise continued. While Leilas looked at him with a flat gaze.
Garaos had come back, obviously oblivious to the buzzing noise, and he gave Orias a drink the colour of clear water, and Orias said, "It looks like water."
Garaos smiled, and said coolly, "Just drink it, it's not water."
Orias complied, and frowned, not feeling any different. Garaos said quickly, "You should be feeling better soon, it's not sudden though, it takes time."
Orias frowned, the buzzing noise getting louder and softer, he stood up, and flinched at the movement, and Garaos asked, "What is with you and rushing around everywhere?"
Orias glared at him to stay quiet, and he frowned, Tharas had come back, and hesitated also. Orias had taken out his sword, unable to pinpoint where the buzzing noise was coming from.
Leilas asked curiously, "What's wrong?"
"Shh." Orias growled.
Leilas made a face, and looked at Tharas, who shrugged.
Orias turned back to them, and asked in confusion, "Can't you hear that?"
"Hear what?" Garaos asked curiously.
Orias looked around again, and Leilas's eyes flashed, "Orias, Yuna told me something." She said quickly.
"Yeah, what did she tell you?" Orias asked curiously, the buzzing noise seeming to get louder.
"She said that her gift of sight can only be passed onto mortals, some of them are born with it, some of them are given it, and only Yuna, Solaris, Tharas, and apparently some mortals have the willpower, energy, and mental strength to handle the visions, give it to someone who may have the willpower but not the mental strength, well... The consequences aren't very nice..." Leilas said quietly.
"Okay, right, so?" Orias asked.
Leilas rolled her eyes, and said quickly, "Yuna wouldn't have given it to someone who couldn't handle it."
"What are you trying to say?" Orias asked, turning to face her, as the buzzing noise grew louder.
She said something, but he didn't hear her, and he asked, "What?"
"I said, we can't hear a buzzing noise, only you can, isn't that kind of suspicious?" Leilas asked.
I was thinking it was a type of energy field... Orias thought curiously.
Garaos and Tharas were staring at him, and Orias asked, "Are you saying you can't hear it?"
Garaos shook his head, and Tharas growled, "We can't hear anything."
Orias said jokingly, "Oh, well, lucky you, it's starting to get really annoying."
Tharas and Garaos just stared at him, and he asked, "What?"
Tharas ignored him, and turned to Garaos, and said something, but Orias couldn't hear him. He noticed Leilas walk up to him, and he asked, "What?"
She said, "Orias, are you hearing a light buzzing noise?"
"I wouldn't call it light." He muttered.
Leilas got a flash of hidden fear in her gaze, and she whispered, "That's what Yuna heard before her vision."
Orias just stared at her, and the buzzing noise stopped. But his vision seemed to blur in and out of focus, Leilas asked very clearly, "Orias?"
He frowned, and blinked, but Leilas was no longer standing in front of him.
He was in the farlands.
What you see
May not be the same
As what others do.
"Oh no, not this place!" Orias exclaimed, he looked around quickly, hoping to see Leilas or Garaos, the two people he trusted that could stand this place. But there was no one else with him, he was all alone in the darkest places of the worlds.
He looked around quickly, there was no one, except the few echoes of the spirits that had passed, who were looking at him with an almost eerie curiousity towards him. He took out his sword, and they whisked away, while the trees cast dark shadows, and the night sky had no stars, not even a moon.
Orias glanced around, and noticed a dark shape seem to form in front of him, it was huge. He looked up at it with a mixture of horror, the shape wasn't human, it was an animal, but almost monstrous. But the piercing ice blue eyes seemed almost familiar, but not.
"What is going on?" Orias asked. But didn't get an answer, the dark vision, unfurled it's shadowy black wings, and it's spines shivered in fear.
Wait? It's afraid? He stared up at it, and it stared down at him, and soon the farlands changed, to the very mountain Theria was from, but the white city was in ruins. There was no sign of life in the city, and he looked up at the animal, and asked in shock, "Did you do this?"
It narrowed it's eyes, but didn't do anything, he asked quickly, "Is Theria all right?"
The huge animal didn't answer. When he looked up at the sky, it was different from the real world, the clouds were a thick dark grey, no light shone through the clouds, the animal got down to his level as much as it could, and seemed to indicate behind him.
Orias looked down behind him, and realised he was looking over all of Hamark, and the lands of Gray Lock, The White Wall, and Karai. Then there was the mountain, but he got an odd feeling from it, an angry feeling.
"What is that?" He asked confused, and looked back at the animal, but it seemed confused as well.
He flinched when there was flashing images in his vision, but he couldn't catch any of them, and soon both him and the shadow was in the Farlands, and Orias thought, Guess the thing doesn't like this place much either. He watched as the thing looked around nervously.
The spirits were jeering at him, he muttered, "I need... To get out of here..."
The Farlands seemed to dissipate, and soon his vision blackened.
He blinked open his eyes, and realised he was in Azarath, with Yuna staring down at him with a cool gaze.
"Ah!" He sat up immediately, but held his head. She smiled, and said calmly, "Don't rush yourself Orias, if I'm honest, didn't think you had that much mental strength, I guess I shouldn't have underestimated your ability that much."
Orias looked around, and asked curiously, "How did I get here?"
"Tharas brought you here." Yuna said, smiling, then she frowned, and said quietly, "Although, I had no idea you got my gift of sight, not unless I gave it to you, or Solaris."
Orias frowned, and Yuna gave him a drink, and he asked, "Is this-?"
"Water? Yes, amazing, the simplest of human remedies will do." Yuna smiled, eyes shining.
As he took a sip of it, Yuna asked, "What did you see? If you remember, or want to remember?"
"It feels like a blur, mostly." Orias growled.
Yuna smiled, "I understand, some things you don't want to remember." She said cooly.
Orias frowned, and said flatly, "I remember the Farlands."
Yuna got a confused look on her face, and she asked, "The Farlands?"
"Yeah, and the monstrous animal shape that came out of the shadows." Orias said quietly.
Yuna looked at him through searching eyes, he thought quietly, I don't think I should mention the two mountains. That's...
He stared at Yuna, and asked, "So, what happened, when I got the vision?"
Yuna smiled, and said curtly, "I'll let Tharas explain." She stood up, leaving the room they were in.
That's not a good sign. Orias paled at the thought, and stood up carefully, he peeked out of the room, it was night time, he fully opened the door, and saw a flash of silver head towards them, he dodged it quickly, and heard Tharas's voice.
"At least your reflexes haven't changed." He joked.
"Thanks a lot." Orias muttered, looking around in the dark, waiting for his vision to adjust to the light.
When he could see, Tharas had his arms crossed, and Orias asked, "So, what happened?"
"Um, you gave Leilas a shock, for one, well, you actually gave all of us a shock." Tharas said quietly.
"Did I say anything?" Orias asked curiously.
"No, but you looked pretty bothered about what you were seeing," Tharas muttered, "After I realised you were having a vision, I pretty much dragged you to Yuna."
Orias growled, "I'm sorry..."
"Don't be, none of us were expecting it, except maybe Leilas, but she seemed more suspicious then sure of herself," Tharas muttered quietly, "Or she was hoping to be wrong about it."
Orias made a face, and said quietly, "That was the most horrible thing I've ever experienced, I don't understand how Yuna takes it."
Tharas looked thoughtful, and mused, "Hm, I wonder how you got it."
Orias made a face, "I have no idea, that mountain..." He faltered, and froze.
Tharas turned to look at him, confused. Orias started walking away from Tharas. Tharas asked quickly, "Hey, where are you going?"
"Back home." Orias answered quickly.
"Was it something you saw?" Tharas asked carefully.
Orias stopped, and turned to look at him, and he murmured quietly, "That's just it, I didn't see anything, no life at all." He turned away, and kept walking.
He expected Tharas to stop him, but he never did, he walked out of the house, and looked up at the night sky. He thought, So, that was some trick Solaris pulled, I guess both Leilas and Tharas are right, maybe I should be more careful of Solaris.
He blinked, and soon he was standing back in Hamark, the familiar mountain looming over him, like a foreboding shadow. Just like the animal in the vision. He jumped when there was a voice behind him.
Garaos was walking toward him, looking shocked.
"What is it?" Orias asked carefully.
Garaos smiled, "Oh, I just ran into Tharas, he was being cagey about what had happened." He said quickly.
"Okay, what are you doing here?" Orias asked coldly.
Garaos turned, and frowned, "Whoa, watch the hostility, Orias." He smiled, but it was different, more like Solaris, Orias stared at him.
"Sorry." Orias growled.
Garaos shrugged, "Man, whatever, that must have been a weird experience, so, this is what you saw, right?" He looked up at the mountain also, his gaze curious.
Orias narrowed his eyes, and said cooly, "Well, it's one of the things I saw."
Garaos looked at him again, "So, are you going to go up or not?" He asked carefully.
"Uhm, should I?" Orias asked curiously, and stared up at the mountain.
"Why not?" Garaos asked, there was a cold edge to his voice, and Orias stared at him, Garaos smiled, and shrugged, "Not that it matters, I'd be curious." He said quickly.
Orias turned back to the mountain, then looked at the steps that were a little bit aways, he frowned, and shuffled nervously.
"Not like you to hesitate." Garaos pointed out.
Orias said coldly, "I'm not hesitating, something is really off about this mountain, I don't like it."
Garaos stared at him, and he shrugged, "Whatever, do what you want, but you can't lie, you're curious also, you're going to go up anyways." He disappeared.
Orias stared at the spot where Garaos was moments before, and Orias thought darkly, Is he... Egging me on? That's unlike him. Orias huffed, looking back at the steps, and walked towards them, and thought, annoyed, He's right though. But I don't have to go up.
Orias started walking up the steps, and hesitated, staring up the mountain.
"Wow, you're nervous of the mountain?" A sarcastic voice said behind him, he jumped, and turned around.
Theria was standing behind him, fully cloaked, her face hidden underneath the shadow of her hood, but she said with a laugh, "I knew the mountain was kind of gloomy, nothing much to look at, but intimidating?"
Orias stared at her, and he said quietly, "It's not exactly intimidation." He looked back up at the mountain.
Theria asked carefully, "Then what is it?"
Orias looked around, and asked calmly, "Why don't we talk on the way up?"
Theria shrugged, and joined Orias on the steps, and they continued on, Orias said flatly, "It's not intimidation, this mountain just makes me nervous."
Theria smiled, and said, "That's interesting, I always found it boring."
Orias looked at her, and he asked curiously, "Why do you look like you're hiding?"
"I'm not, I'm just not on good terms with people around and on the mountain," Theria muttered grimly, "Guagamela wanted to stay out of this, but just sitting there doing nothing, the whole of Hostrich is in danger, which wether they like it or not, that meant Guagamela was in danger, and before I joined with some people, after I saw all those people in danger, I couldn't just sit back and do nothing." She growled dangerously.
Orias went silent, and soon they reached a white gate, Theria walked under it, while Orias followed. They looked from behind a pillar, it was mostly silent, there was few people here, and Theria muttered, "That's lucky."
Orias looked around suspiciously, Theria indicated for him to follow her, and they headed toward a giant cave, but Orias stopped at the edge, and she turned to face him.
"Something wrong?" She asked, smirking.
Orias looked at it, getting an odd feeling from it. The same feeling he had got from the monstrous animal, an odd but bad feeling.
"There's nothing in here." She said simply, and continued walking, and Orias finally followed.
She took out a light source, and she said quickly, "Watch your head."
Orias nodded, getting more nervous the deeper the cave went.
They soon found themselves in a big round circular room, Orias looked around, wide-eyed, while Theria looked for something.
"What is this place?" Orias asked carefully.
Theria didn't answer straight away, she growled, "Ugh, they took it."
Orias looked up, and she said calmly, "This cave is very sacred to Guagamela, it's a myth that an ancient power is here, a very dangerous power."
"What type of power?" Orias asked carefully.
Theria looked at him thoughtfully, and said quietly, "I'm not exactly sure."
Orias frowned, then asked, "What were you looking for?"
Theria smiled, and said dismissivly, "Oh, that, nothing really important, it'd be nice to have though. Also helpful."
Orias stared at her, and she said quicky, "It was something important to Hostrich, let's just say that, but I wonder why they took it."
There was a noise outside of the dark tunnel, Theria frowned, and growled, "Time to go!"
He looked at Theria, confused, then asked curiously, "Who's out there?"
"I may not have pleased the guy I punched back at Gwen's place, he may not have any fighting skill, but he has friends to back him up." She murmured quietly.
They stayed quiet, the noises getting louder.
Theria smiled, and she said in an amused tone, "They knew I'd come back, I'll hand it to them, but they can't catch me."
Orias watched as she stood up, she pointed to the shadows, and headed towards the entrance to the tunnel, Orias followed to where she pointed, slightly confused what her plan was.
He heard voices, but stayed hidden, Theria's eyes were flashing.
"She won't be here." A voice said simply.
"She will be." The man from Gwen's place said dangerously.
Theria watched as they headed into the cave, and looked around, the man's accomplice said triumphantly, "See? No one here."
Theria soon joined Orias, and asked quickly, "Can you get us out of here?"
Orias nodded, staring at the men, and Theria said quickly, "You've got to be really fast, I'm good, but I can't take on all of them."
She looked at him grimly, then nodded, she came out of the shadows, and asked curiously, "You guys looking for me?"
They turned to her, and some people backed away, but the two men edged towards her, the man from the Tavern was scowling, "You knew we would follow you here, so unlike you."
Theria smiled, as one man headed towards her, a bit quickly than he intended, because soon he was on the floor, she sighed, and said, "Come on, I'm getting bored."
The man's eyes flashed, and he moved so quickly, Orias was surprised Theria reacted just as fast, she dodged, and he took another swipe at her with his sword. Orias thought, What is she thinking?
Theria concentrated all her attacks at the man, but Orias noticed a movement behind her, Theria jumped when he held her from behind, she stepped on his foot, he flinched, and tried not to let go of her as the man took another swipe, that would hit both Theria and the other man.
Orias finally decided to move, his eyes flashing, Theria noticed him move, then ducked the swipe, while the man holding her let go, attempting to dodge the sword.
Orias jumped into the fray, taking the whole group off guard, Theria turned to the man who attacked her, and brushed herself off, and said gently, "You've got to do better than that."
But Orias was facing off the man in the tavern, he was easily knocked down, Orias stared down at him, eyes flashing. While the man on the ground stared up with a mixture of shock and horror.
Theria called, "Hey!"
Orias looked back, Theria was signalling to him, "Time to go! Don't bother with him."
Orias finally nodded, Theria edged toward him, and soon there was a flash of light, and the men were thrown back.
Soon it went silent in the cave, the men stood up, he asked, "What?"
The man Orias had knocked down had finally stood up, he smiled darkly, and murmured, "Now... This changes things, looks like we have an advantage..."
Orias opened his eyes to bright sunlight, he shook his head, and he heard someone growl, "Well, that was interesting."
Theria was sitting crosslegged across from him, rubbing her head, Orias jumped up, and said quickly, "You asked me if I could get us out of there."
"And you did, great, thanks," Theria muttered, staring up at him. She sighed, then looked back down at the grass below her, and said coldly, "Well, I wasn't expecting his friend to pull that trick, not often that happens."
Orias frowned, she also stood up, and said in an annoyed tone, "Anyways, since that was an almost waste a time."
"An almost?" Orias asked curiously.
She looked around, and said, "Yep, and I know where they hid it," she brushed herself off, and said, "Thanks for your help."
Theria smiled, and soon followed a dirt path, Orias stared after her, unsure of what to do, when a voice muttered behind him, "That went better than expected."
Orias jumped when Leilas stepped out. Orias snapped, "Were you following me?"
Leilas rolled her eyes, "Every time you ask me that, it gets tiring, no Orias, shadows echo things, when I hear something in the shadows, it echoes around me." She snapped.
Orias crossed his arms, and turned his back on her, Leilas said quickly, "But as I said, that was interesting. Went well."
Orias asked coldly, "What do you mean?"
Leilas smiled, and looked at him through a thoughtful gaze. "Mortals are very strange, do you know what she was looking for?" She asked cautiously
"You do?" Orias asked, surprised.
Leilas laughed, "Remember, shadows never truly hide anything, contrary to popular belief."
Orias rolled his eyes, Leilas said in a curious tone, "I thought you were going to help her, personally."
"Why?" Orias asked carefully.
Leilas raised an eye-brow, and said cooly, "Eh, whatever, I guess it's nothing then, not a problem." She shrugged, and looked around.
Orias just stared as she streched, and said quickly, "Well, we better get going."
"Where?" Orias asked dangerously.
Leilas stared down at him, and said, "You're not the only one curious of Theria's intentions, I am, Yuna is, and let's face it, you were never going to do Solaris's job anyways, and he knows that, so he's definately going to be hanging around listening," she narrowed her eyes, and asked quickly, "You're not hearing buzzing noises are you?"
Orias sighed, and said flatly, "No, I'm not."
Leilas said, "Good, we're going to follow Theria."
Orias stared at her, and Leilas laughed, "I told you, you're not the only one curious, come on, she won't know, she won't have to know."
"It feels weird." Orias grimaced.
"Feels? Hesitation isn't like you, Orias." Leilas sneered.
Orias blinked, confused, then snarled, "Fine, whatever, I don't care, let's go!"
"You do care, but okay." Leilas shrugged, and led the way into the shadows, Orias following her closely, glaring at her angrily.
Soon they were in a deeper part of Hostrich, and it was night, Orias held his head, and he growled, "Why when we're taking your way, that time seems to skip?"
"You know that, the Lower Spirit World's time is a bit different from here." Leilas said quietly.
Orias eyed her, but she ignored him, and pointed to where fire light shone dimly through the trees. "Let's go." She murmured.
"I don't know." Orias murmured, but followed Leilas anyways, he hesitated, getting a bad feeling, Leilas turned to him.
"What's wrong?" She asked, in an almost soft tone.
Orias narrowed his eyes, the dragon and the two mountains kept flashing in his vision, he sat down, and sighed, holding his head. He said, "Just go on without me."
Leilas frowned, and sat down beside him, and asked curiously, "Are you okay?"
"Yeah, I'm fine." Orias murmured.
Leilas was staring him at weirdly, Orias turned to her, and asked curiously, "Are you okay?"
"Yes, I'm fine, it's nothing," she went silent, then asked, "Is it about your vision?"
Orias said nothing, then nodded quietly, Leilas frowned, and asked quietly, "Want to talk about what you saw? Tharas was cagey about it, like he knew a bit more then he was letting on."
He looked up towards the firelight shining through the trees, casting a dim glow in the night, and he said quietly, "I just saw stuff, I was in the Farlands, and well..." He faltered, suddenly getting a horrible thought, something that hadn't occured to him before.
Leilas seemed to sense the change, and she pushed on, "What?"
"I-I was the monster." Orias said flatly.
"The what?" Leilas looked at him grimly.
"The monster, the animal I saw, Guagamela destroyed, nothing left, and that thing standing in the middle of it," he rasped, then looked down at the grass, "It was me, I destroyed it."
Leilas looked unsure, then asked gently, "Maybe Solaris meant for you to see it, to unhinge you?"
Orias felt sick, it was a really horrible feeling, he never felt like this about anything. He looked at her hopefully, "Yeah, maybe." But he grimaced, I hope.
Leilas smiled, but asked, "Do you need to... Go see Yuna, or Tharas?"
Orias shook his head, and said quickly, "Would it change anything? Maybe you're right, maybe Solaris is just toying with me. I don't know, best to not let him know."
Leilas stared at him, and smiled, "Well, if that's the case, don't let Solaris know." She said calmly.
Orias nodded, She doesn't show it easily, but she's worried, Orias thought as he looked at Leilas, whose eyes were flat.
"Okay, let's see what Theria is trying to find." Orias growled determindly, Leilas stood up after him, and they headed towards the firelight.
Orias stayed a bit aways, not wanting to look, but Leilas said quietly, "She's with other people, that's all I know, something about a book."
"A book?" Orias asked, his curiousity growing, but restrained it.
"Yeah." Leilas said, then looked down at Orias, she looked around, Orias jumped when darkness surrounded the two of them, and they were in the Lower Spirit World. Orias looked at her.
"What?" Orias asked curiously.
"You felt horrible." Leilas murmured gently.
"About what?" Orias asked cautiously.
Leilas stared at him, with a mixture of sadness and pity, and she continued grimly, "No matter how great your curiousity was, it didn't feel right, you chose to care in the unusual way, but not find out what was going on, even if it was super important, something Yuna or Solaris wanted to know."
Orias stared at her, and she continued, "That's not a good sign, Orias, for an old god to feel that way, we aren't meant to feel that way."
"Good sign?" Orias asked, sitting down, feeling a lot more tired.
"We don't normally choose our way, Solaris and Yuna do that for us." Leilas whispered.
"It's annoying." Orias muttered.
Leilas frowned, "We're going to see Tharas." She said quickly.
"Why Tharas?" Orias asked dangerously.
"Because..." Leilas hesitated, then sighed, "Fine, don't tell Tharas."
Orias frowned, and Leilas said, "Whatever, come on, we better get back to Azarath, you look like you haven't slept in ages."
"We don't usually need sleep, Leilas." Orias said jokingly, standing up.
He hesitated at the look she gave him, and soon darkness enveloped them again, and soon they were in Azarath, Leilas watched Orias leave towards the house Yuna had taken him when he had the vision.
Leilas thought dangerously, If Solaris... I hope he didn't... If he did, that would mean trouble.
But, maybe the good things
Outweigh the consequences.
Orias sat in the dark forest alone, he sighed, I'm dreaming, I know I am.
The dream had repeated itself so many times, Orias started to grow tired of it, but he jumped when the scene seemed to change.
He was standing on the mountain top of Guagamela, it was in complete ruins, there was no one, only him. He flinched, the White City was destroyed. No matter how I keep telling myself, it's only Solaris and his mind games, it just feels... Wrong, like Solaris isn't showing me this to mess with me.
Orias looked up at the mountain with sad eyes, and the dream ended. He blinked open his eyes, and sat up. He rubbed his head, and frowned.
He flinched there was a knock on the door, he frowned when Leilas asked curiously, "Are you awake yet?"
"I am now." He snarled.
He heard Leilas laugh, he rolled his eyes, getting up quickly, he peeked out the door, expecting Leilas to swipe at him, but she was just sitting there, holding something.
"About time, I've got something that'll make you feel better." Leilas said quickly, smiling.
She stood up, and took out what was Orias's sword, he stared at her, and said quietly, "That thing broke a long time ago..." He stared down at the sword.
"Indeed," Leilas smiled, and asked, "You do know you were asleep for a while?"
"I had a feeling." Orias muttered cooly.
Leilas smiled, "Well, I was talking to Theria, in disguise of course, although she knew it was me, I guess," she tipped her head, and said quickly, "Actually, it was very bold of her to help me with this in full view of the people she was fighting against."
She held out the icy white sword, it had looked like it was before it was broken, except sharper, as if it was renewed, and the hilt was a stormy silver, but what surprised Orias was the three eagle feathers on the hilt, Leilas was staring down at them with a slight fondness.
"That's why I say it was bold, she had tied those around the sword in full view of the people trying to oppress her," Leilas looked up, eyes shining, "You do know what the eagle represents there?" She asked quietly.
Orias stared at the sword, it was impressive, but it was also cursed, he looked back up at her, and said quietly, "The sign of freedom."
"You understand what she meant?" Leilas asked, confused.
Orias flinched, I wish I didn't...
"I see," Leilas muttered, staring at him, and stood up, "Anyways, there's another reason I came here."
"Oh, and what's that?" Orias asked, sneering at Leilas.
Leilas eyed him, and growled, "I'd hate to say this, but I need your help, routine job, and you're not going to like this."
"I'm liking this already." Orias laughed.
"Haha, cute," Leilas scowled at him, and she continued, "Tharas has asked me to go to the Farlands, however, I can't do this alone, and he can't even go near the place for ten seconds, let alone your few hours."
"No way am I setting foot in that place, get Garaos to help you." Orias snapped.
Leilas snarled back, "Garaos can't help me, Solaris has him under what mortals say 'Lock and Key' whatever that means."
Orias raised an eye-brow, and Leilas shrugged, "They have weird sayings, anyways, this needs to be done before the solstice." She added quickly.
"Wonderful." Orias growled.
Leilas punched him in the arm, and said quickly, "It'd let you try the blade, now let's go, and don't worry, if anything happens, we're both getting out of there. I promise." She stared at him.
He stared back, and finally nodded. Leilas smiled, and gestured for him to follow her. He obeyed, and they walked out of the bustling city of Azarath, towards the old pond. Orias asked curiously, "We're taking this way?"
"Yeah." Leilas said, she waved her hand quickly over the pond, and it became very still, mirror like. Leilas brushed her hand over the surface, and asked, "You ready?"
Orias sighed, "I guess so."
Leilas smiled, then jumped onto the soul mirror, Orias followed. Soon they were both in the Farlands, Orias shivered, and he growled, "Let's hurry this up then?"
Leilas nodded, and walked around, Orias realised that there was no jeering spirits, and he asked, "Where are they?"
Leilas shrugged, Orias murmured, "Last time I was in this place was during the vision..."
She eyed him, and said quickly, "Then we better hurry."
Orias followed her begrudingly, and he asked quietly, "What do you see? When you enter here?"
Leilas looked on thoughtfully, "Uh, nothing really, a lot brighter then the lower spirit world, that's for sure, that place is so dreary." She answered disdainfully
"I don't believe it," Orias crossed his arms, looking around, "What I see, this place is even more depressing, makes me want to sit for a long time in the Lower Spirit World."
Orias looked at Leilas, already getting a head-ache from the farlands, and he asked, "Shall we hurry this up, I really don't want to stay here long."
Leilas nodded. They continued walking, Orias jumped when there was a breeze, and Leilas laughed, "Wow, you're really jumpy when you're here."
"I have good reason to be." Orias snapped. He looked around suspiciously, while Leilas continued to walk calmly on.
He unsheathed his sword, while Leilas said calmly, "Nothing is going to jump out at you, Orias, if something was going to jump out at you, I would be able to warn you beforehand."
"What are we doing here anyways?" Orias asked.
"As I said, routine job, someone tried to spilt their soul." Leilas said quietly.
"Eee, that's dangerous," Orias shivered, "I mean, only once, and by accident?" He asked quietly.
"Tharas believes it was on accident, of on purpose by someone." Leilas said quietly.
Orias asked quietly, "And you're going to fix it? Isn't it near irreversable?"
"Only when done more than once, Orias," Leilas pointed out calmly, "I'm going to attempt to take the bit of the soul ripped apart, and repair them."
"Sounds like it would be complicated to attempt." Orias murmured, confused.
"It's simpler the less the soul has been torn, but it's a dangerous thing to do anyways, no matter how many times you split it." Leilas said quietly, and looked around.
Orias flinched, "Why do they do it though, it's like mortals don't understand the importance of their souls, it's their very being. Everything they are." He growled.
Leilas turned to him and said quietly, "They won't ever understand, they want to find ways to avoid the unavoidable, even if it means ripping themself apart to find an answer that doesn't exist."
Orias sighed, "Makes me feel kind of sorry for them."
Leilas said nothing, and continued walking, Orias followed her, feeling uneasy as they went deeper, he could almost see the black creature in the back of his mind. Leilas stopped, and said quietly, "Time to get started then."
Orias nodded, relaxing his grip on the blade, Leilas took out her sword also, the spirits were watching with a eerie curiousity, I wish they'd go away. Orias thought darkly. He looked up when Leilas struck her sword in the ground, and started muttering something under her breath, the environment seemed to shiver, and soon it stopped, mist started to form from the grass.
Leilas took her sword out of the ground, and looked at Orias, she nodded, and he raised his sword. The mist seemed to even out, and disappear, Orias looked at Leilas, and she smiled, he sheathed the sword, and asked curiously, "Did it work?"
Leilas hesitated, looking around, and she muttered, "It would seem so, but you never know, let's go then." She started to walk away from the mist.
Orias followed, his uneasy feeling growing, and he said coldly, "Something's really off, Leilas."
"That's what you always say, Orias, I promise we'll be out soon." Leilas said cooly, and turned to him.
Orias crossed his arms, he stopped, looking around quickly, Leilas looked back at him again, and she asked, "What?"
Orias didn't say anything, and she stared at him, "Oh please don't start having a vision now, not in this place!" She snarled.
Orias looked at her, and snapped, "I'm not having a vision, it's just, something is bugging me."
Leilas looked around also, and said cooly, "Looks normal enough."
Orias felt his vision darken, and soon they were in the lower spirit world, Orias sat down in relief, and he said gratefully, "I'm glad to be out of there."
Leilas was silent though. She asked, "Tharas? Are you there?"
There was no answer, and Orias stared at Leilas, and he murmured, "That can't be good." Leilas shook her head, staring up at the sky.
Orias and Leilas were completely silent. Orias finally stood up, and stood beside Leilas, he said quietly, "Not like him to ignore us." He looked around at the shadows.
Leilas looked around, and she murmured, "Did something happen?"
Orias shrugged, but he got an odd feeling, he said, "I've got to go."
Leilas looked at him, confused, Orias murmured quickly, "I promise if I see Tharas I'll tell him you're looking for him!"
She looked like she was about to argue, but he closed his eyes and imagined Hamark, and soon when he opened his eyes, he was standing in a clearing, being overlooked by the mountain.
Orias started walking instinctivly away from the mountain, and towards Gwen's place. I refuse to go to the mountain, I don't want my vision coming true.
"Well, look who it is." Someone said behind him.
He turned around, and saw Theria sitting on a low branch, she was hidden behind her mask, and she said calmly, "You look better than when I last saw you."
Orias stared at her, and she leaped gracefully onto the ground, she looked a the bright lights coming from Gwen's place, and she said, "I'm afraid this peace won't last long."
"What makes you say that?" Orias asked curiously.
Theria looked at the castle in the distance, and she said quietly, "We all knew this was going to happen, the king, people that live here, we were just waiting for it," she grabbed a necklace that was hanging around her neck, and she murmured, "People are going to lose their lives in the war that's coming."
"Why don't they stop this from happening, if they fear of the loss of life?" Orias asked curiously.
Theria sighed, and growled, "It's not that simple, we've wanted to be free of the current king for a long time now, ask someone to turn away from that goal, then we shouldn't have complained in the first place," Theria let go of her necklace, and Orias flinched when it was a dragon, and she said, "If people are willing to risk everything for that, then you can't stop it."
Orias sighed, "Where do you get that willpower?"
"What do you mean?" Theria asked curiously.
"Compared to us, you live surprisingly short lives," He stared into the distance, "But, you know this, why do you keep on going, even though in the end, you die in a short while?" He asked curiously..
"Maybe that's why we keep going, because our lives are short. To you guys," Theria said quietly. Orias said nothing, and she continued, "I mean, you guys pretty much live forever, you don't even get older until a certain point."
Orias nodded, "Yeah, it's weird though." He muttered.
"What? Not aging or not dying?" Theria asked, confused.
"Both, I guess, but those things have always been odd to us, you guys understand those two things better than we do." Orais muttered, crossing his arms.
Theria crossed her arms also, "Not by much, a lot of us are just scared." She said, staring up at the sky.
"Of what?" Orias asked, surprised.
Theria stared at him, then said cooly, "Of aging, dying."
"Odd thing to be afraid of." Orias muttered, staring up at the sky also.
Theria asked quietly, "Is it weird? How do you think it would feel, knowing that you can age? That you can die?" She looked at Gwen's place sadly.
Orias said nothing, then he sighed, "I don't know."
"Well, not your fault," Theria laughed, "Old gods can't die."
Orias didn't answer her though, he looked on thoughtfully, Theria stopped smiling, and she said quietly, "I have a feeling you've never thought about it before."
"Old gods don't usually think about it, there's very few ways to kill us, and fewer more know how, and those few are old gods themselves." Orias murmured, and he stared at the sky.
Theria stared at him, and asked, shocked, "So, none of you are worried that you might end up killing each-other?"
"Why would we? We're all friends." Orias muttered.
"Friends don't stay friends all the time." Theria growled darkly.
Orias said nothing, and jumped when Theria made a move towards Gwen's place, he watched as she stepped, kind of angrily, towards a group of people walking out.
Orias tensed up, and jumped in front of her, and he asked quickly, "Is that the best idea right now?!"
Theria glared up at him, Orias felt strangely small, and she said cooly, "I need to do this." She pushed him to the side, she started to walk toward them.
What's she thinking?! Orias stared in shock, What in the world is she thinking?!
Orias went after her, and realised the people had noticed them both, Theria stopped, Orias bumped into her. The person took his hood off. Who is this? Orias looked on curiously.
Theria was gripping her swords though, the person said cooly, "Oh, hello."
Theria asked dangerously, "What are you doing here?"
The person raised an eyebrow, "Not how I'm usually greeted, I was just having a nice talk." He said cooly, and walked off, the people around him following him.
Theria however pushed through the door, Orias stared at her when her eyes widened, he peeked in, and widened his eyes also.
The place was in ruins, Theria was shaking, "How could I have been so stupid, I saw them go in hours ago! I saw them!" She pushed past Orias into the building, and she called, "Gwen? Are you there?! Are you all right?!"
Orias finally stepped inside. He looked around as Theria clambered everywhere looking for Gwen, getting frantic each step she took.
"Where is she?!" Theria snarled, kicking a chair out of frustration.
Orias stared at the ceiling, Theria walked up to him, and asked, "What?"
"Have you checked upstairs?" Orias asked faintly.
Theria stomped towards the back room. Orias heard her walk up the stairs, and then silence. Minutes later, Theria was with Gwen, who looked shaken up. Theria stomped towards Orias who flinched, and she growled, "I need you to get me to my camp!"
Orias asked, "Your camp?"
"Yes, Orias, my camp, the place I go with my friends!" Theria waved her arms.
"Please calm down." Orias said quietly.
Theria paced, and looked at Gwen, she asked, "Are you sure he's going to attack?" Gwen only nodded, and Theria looked at Orias, almost pleadingly.
"How am I supposed to help?" Orias asked.
Theria stared at him, "You can get me there before them!" She said hopefully.
Orias only stared at her, she sighed, walking past Orias. Orias frowned, and closed his eyes, grabbing Theria's arm before she could leave.
Both of them jumped when they landed somewhere near the mountain, Theria looked around, "Well, near enough I guess." She murmured, and looked around.
Orias rubbed his head, and said, "It's a bit harder if I don't have a clear image in my mind." Theria was staring up at the sky, horror in her eyes, Orias asked curiously, "What?"
He looked up at the sky also, and was surprised when there was flames and smoke, Theria ran past him, right towards the flames.
"Hey!" Orias called, following her.
Theria didn't stop though, but she did when she reached a clearing. "No..." She whispered.
Orias looked at the shadows, and asked, Leilas...
What? Leilas asked.
I have a problem. Orias stared back at the clearing.
Wow you said that seriously. Leilas laughed, then she stopped laughing, What's wrong?
Orias didn't answer though, both him and Theria were stunned by the fire before them, raising light into the night sky.
Orias jumped when Theria moved, she called, "Anyone there?"
Orias continued to stare at the fire though, then finally followed her around the fire, and he asked, "The camp was in the clearing?"
"Only parts of it." Theria whispered.
Orias frowned, the fire wasn't stopping. They came upon more fire, but this is where the camp was, and no one was there. Theria walked into the destroyed camp, Orias stared as she shifted through a tent, trying to get something.
"Really?!" Orias said, surprised.
Theria finally pulled out a book, Orias flinched when there was a creaking sound, he ran toward her, taking out his sword. She jumped back, "What are you-?!" She was cut off when a tree broke from all the fire, heading straight towards them both.
Orias jumped when Leilas came out of no where, and reacted just as fast as he did. Both of them stopped the tree, and it cracked in two above them, landing away from them.
Theria was staring up at the two old gods in shock. She stared at the spilt tree, "That thing almost crushed us."
"I guess so, now time to go!" Leilas snapped, grabbing both Theria and Orias, as more trees started to fall. Orias however, waved his hand at Leilas,
She stared at him confused as she let go of him, and Theria hissed, "What are you doing?"
"Stopping the fire." Orias said cooly.
He stared up at the sky, more trees creaked, some fell off in the distance, he narrowed his eyes when a light drizzle started from the light grey clouds, and then it started to rain heavily. He eyed the trees around them, and Leilas grabbed him again, and his vision darkened.
Leilas took them a bit aways from the fire, and she asked, "What in the world was that all about?"
Orias sat against a tree, and shrugged. He looked at Theria, who was staring at the dimming fire in the distance. She held up a book, and let Leilas take it. Leilas read through it fairly quickly, then asked in a strained voice, "Are you sure that is what this is about? Is this what the king wants?"
Orias asked, "What?"
"You are not going to like this." Leilas clutched at the book, staring down at it if it was something evil.
Theria said in a strained voice, "We were trying to keep it safe, away from the king, so he wouldn't do anything drastic just to end this."
Orias stood up, looking over Leilas's shoulder. It was a book, but it was a book on the old gods in general, more so on Solaris and Yuna than anything.
"The king wants a way to get a levy up on you guys." Theria murmured, staring down at the ground.
"By finding out... How to kill us?" Orias asked curiously.
Theria nodded, "Before, it was kept safe, hidden deep within Guagamela, but it was no longer safe, the king was going to launch an attack, so I guess someone hid it somewhere else, then we came across it." She murmured.
Leilas asked darkly, "Why didn't you just let it burn in the fire?"
Theria stood up, staring at the two old gods, "I'm not your enemy, I wanted to keep the book safe, the old gods are important, kill them, this world would die without them." She said cooly.
Orias said nothing, too shocked. Leilas looked at him, "What do you think?"
Orias blinked, then said flatly, "Well, it's not as safe with us either. No matter where we would hide it, someone would come across it either way."
Leilas stared at him in shock, and she murmured, "Not what I was expecting from you."
"Did you find Tharas?" Orias asked.
Leilas shook her head.
Theria blinked, and Leilas said flatly, "I'll get this somewhere safe, I'll hide it."
"Yeah." Orias nodded, staring ahead, still shocked.
Leilas took a last look at them both, then disappeared into the shadows with the book.
Theria and Orias stood there in silence, and Theria asked grimly, "I bet you guys don't trust me now?"
Orias finally looked at her, and asked, "What?"
"I had the book that had things about you guys." Theria said flatly.
Orias blinked, and said calmly, "I'm not sure about Leilas, but I do still trust you, and if I trust you, Leilas does too, and she rarely trusts anybody." He crossed his arms.
Theria stared at him, she reached her hand to the dragon necklace once again, she whispered something that Orias didn't catch, and she smiled, "Thank you, Orias." She murmured.
Orias looked at her confused, "...Thank... You?"
"Yes, do you not know what that means?" Theria asked curiously.
"I know what it means." Orias muttered.
Theria sighed, "I should word it differently then. I'm glad that you don't hate me or anything of the sort, and I'm grateful that you helped me out."
"Why would I hate you?" Orias asked curiously.
Theria stared at him, confused, and raised an eyebrow, while Orias just stared back. Theria seemed to smile, and said, "Well..." She faltered, "Thank you anyways." She walked away from him.
Orias tipped his head, "Did I say something funny?" He mused.
Yeah you kind of did. Leilas laughed.
Oh yeah, what did I say that was so weird? Orias asked.
Just think about what you said to her. Leilas laughed.
Orias looked on thoughtfully, and shrugged, Still not getting it.
I may be an old god, but I'm also a woman, and wow, no matter what, mortal or old gods, guys are all the same everywhere. Leilas said cooly.
How was it weird?! Orias asked.
I guess you haven't understood then... Leilas laughed, Because she certainly did!
Orias huffed, Understood what?!
Eh, I'll explain later. Leilas laughed.
Orias just shook his head, and looked back at the mountain.
What are we going to do? If we get dragged into this... Then, people are going to be hurt... Orias thought quietly, as the rain began to fall very lightly, the white city overlooking the whole land.
You can never fight alone
Orias looked around, he was on the mountain in the middle, and he asked, "Leilas, you here?"
"I've been here for over an hour, where have you been?" Leilas hissed from no where.
"What did you want?" Orias hissed back, "You just told me to meet me here, and Tharas is still missing!" He pushed open the door, ducking as Leilas swiped her sword.
"I know! That's why I called you here!" Leilas said cooly, sheathing her sword.
Orias raised an eye-brow, and asked curiously, "Found out a way to find Tharas?"
"You could say that, I tried contacting Garaos, but he hasn't been answering. He either went looking for Tharas in the Farlands, which is unlikely, or he went somewhere into the Lower Spirit World we can't reach." Leilas said cooly, walking out of the house, followed by Orias.
"There's such a place?" Orias asked, then added, "Last I remember, we could contact anything from the Lower Spirit World."
Leilas stood at the edge, "But in this case, that isn't so," she tipped her head, "So, it's either Tharas is blocking contact, or something around him is."
Orias asked, "Think something attacked him?"
"And took him of all people, down?" Leilas questioned, shaking her head, "No, this is suspicious, something's wrong." Leilas crossed her arms, staring at the stars.
Orias hesitated, then asked, "Did you hide the book?"
Leilas nodded, "The best I could do was let the shadows take it somewhere, I don't want to know were, because if I know, everyone else will." She murmured.
Orias frowned, Leilas said flatly, "Now, we need to find him, because Solaris and Yuna are busy this time around, and even if they weren't, Solaris wouldn't help us anyways."
He watched as Leilas took out out a glowing stone, she narrowed her eyes at it, raising it up to the sun. She looked through it, and Orias jumped when it's surface started to crack, Leilas asked, "Are you ready then?"
"Ready as I'll ever be." Orias laughed nervously.
Sun started to pour through the cracks of the glowing stone, and just as it was about to break, Leilas threw it away into the air. It broke into pieces, and soon the environment changed, Orias asked, "Couldn't you have just, I don't know, took us there yourself?"
Leilas huffed, "I'm afraid this requires stealth, and whatever is here would see us coming if I used my way. This way, we have the element of surprise," she eyed Orias, "That means no making lots of noise." She pointed out.
"I know what stealth is, thanks Leilas." Orias scowled.
Leilas laughed quietly, "Sometimes, you're not a very quiet person, Orias."
Orias growled at her, but they walked silently through the dark forest, it was a lot more calming and open compared to the Farlands. Although Leilas has a point, Orias eyed the spirits, who were scowling at the two, They're just as dreary as the spirits in the Farlands, although, I can tell what most of them are thinking.
He looked away, and sighed, What are you doing, Tharas? He thought quietly.
Leilas stopped him with her hand, and she said, "Do you sense that?"
Orias looked around, and narrowed his eyes. "I do." He muttered.
Leilas reached for her sword, while Orias did the same, Leilas asked, "Are you getting the same bad feeling I'm getting?"
"No?" Orias hesitated, confused.
Orias jumped when Leilas gasped, and their visions flashed white, and then it was dark. Orias narrowed his eyes, and realised that he somehow was thrown into a soul mirror, but he was not going to somewhere he was thinking of. Oh! I need to get out of here, soul mirrors water is poisonous, especially to us! He thought in panic.
He closed his eyes again, and tried to think of some place, any place. The water started to shift, and soon he landed somewhere else in the lower spirit world, but everything was blurry, and someone was looking at him, arms crossed.
"Not how I would expect you to enter, but I guess everyone has their moments." The person shrugged, and they walked away.
Orias stood up, holding his head, "I hope I didn't swallow any of that." He murmured, coughing.
"I don't think you did." The person said. Orias looked at him, and realised that it was Tharas, but he looked perfectly fine.
"Hey! Why didn't you answer us?" Orias asked, jumping up, but sat back down.
Tharas looked at him, then he said pointedly, "Don't rush yourself, if you did swallow some of that water, then we don't need you exhausting yourself out."
Orias grumbled, "Looks like someone is normal," he hesitated, then asked, "Where's Garaos? Did he come looking for you."
Tharas shrugged, "No idea." He said thoughtfully.
"Oh, this sucks, I'm not sure where Leilas went off to, all we saw was this bright light, then I guess I was moved right into a soul mirror." Orias said flatly.
Tharas asked oddly, "Are you feeling all right?"
Orias looked at him, but he had a flat gaze, Orias nodded, "Yeah, I'm fine." He said calmly.
He watched as Tharas stood up. Orias asked, "How did you get here? What happened?"
Tharas had a thoughtful look on his face, "To be honest, I'm not exactly sure." He murmured, staring at the trees overhead.
Orias stood up, "Hey wait!" He pointed at the shadows, "Leilas told me she had to be sent to the Farlands to reattach a split soul, that you sent her there!" He said quickly.
Tharas stared at him, confused, "I never told her to go there..." He muttered.
"Then who did?!" Orias gaped at him, shocked.
Tharas shrugged, "No idea," he said quietly, then added, "It just wasn't me."
Orias paced, while Tharas watched, "This is bad, I knew something was off, and so did Leilas." He muttered under his breath.
He jumped when Tharas muttered, "I don't know what to tell you, I don't even know how long I've been here, but I've tried a lot of ways to get out, and none of them worked."
"That means we're stuck." Orias sighed.
Tharas frowned, "Sorry, but that doesn't mean there's another way to get out of here." He muttered, looking around.
Orias looked around also, he sighed, "How long do you think we'll be here?" He asked curiously.
Tharas didn't answer right away, he was still looking around, while Orias could hear a light, faint buzzing noise. He asked, "Do you think we're trapped by an energy field? An illusion?"
"That's possible, are you hearing it?" Tharas asked.
Orias nodded, "Yeah, it's faint, but it's there, and well hidden." He pointed out.
Tharas seemed to nod, and took out his sword, "Tell me where." He growled.
Orias looked around, and pointed at the small group of trees, Tharas swiped his sword at the area, and they watched as that area seemed to disappate. But it wasn't gone yet.
Orias laughed, "Guess we're making our own exit then?"
Tharas seemed to smile, and nodded, "Hear any other ones?" He asked.
Orias looked around again, and tipped his head, "It's there, somewhere." He took out his sword also, and looked around.
Orias tensed up when he heard the same buzzing noise again, he readied his sword, and swiped at the area where the buzzing noise was coming from, and stepped back when it disappated, he said excitedly, "We're going to get out of here."
"Don't get too overconfident, it might change." Tharas said quietly.
Orias made a face, trying to listen. Tharas was watching carefully, and he asked, "Hear any more?"
He shook his head, and Tharas sat down. Orias sighed, "I don't understand what's going on with this place..." He looked around, "It's weirding me out." He murmured.
Tharas muttered, "It's because the spirits are getting restless."
"Aren't you supposed to calm them?" Orias asked.
Tharas shook his head, "They are calm. Something is just making them restless. Uneasy." He muttered quietly.
"I don't want to know what that means." Orias sighed, also sitting down.
Tharas smiled, "No, you probably don't, you wouldn't understand anyways." He pointed out calmly.
Orias blinked, he narrowed his eyes when the area around them seemed to shift, Tharas frowned, and asked quietly, "Are you feeling all right, are you sure you didn't swallow the water?"
"What?" Orias asked curiously.
"Are you feeling all right?" Tharas asked a bit more louder.
He blinked, then answered, "Yeah, I'm fine."
Tharas said nothing, then sighed, "Well, we better hurry and get out of here then."
Orias watched as he stood up, but the whole area was still distorting. He shivered, staring as Tharas took out his sword, and narrowed his eyes. He slashed at a tree, but it seemed to disappear, and Tharas sighed, "I think that's most of the illusion, it should be easier to get out now, or maybe call Leilas."
Orias just nodded, he was still oddly cold. Maybe it's just the spirits? However this place has never been this cold. Not that I can remember. He thought darkly.
Tharas looked back at him, "Are you coming or not?" He asked curiously.
He looked up, then nodded. Orias stood up, and followed after Tharas. He still felt that odd chill. Tharas called, "Leilas, can you hear me?"
Orias listened and he heard Leilas, but it was distant, and soon she appeared out of the shadows, and said quickly, "There you are! I've been looking for you two."
"It's only been an hour." Tharas pointed out.
Orias asked oddly, "Has it?"
Tharas and Leilas looked at him, and Leilas nodded, "Yeah, around that." She said cooly.
Orias wanted to snap something back, but stopped, he sniffed, and shrugged. Leilas raised an eye-brow, and said in a confused tone, "I would have thought you'd say something sarcastic back."
He shrugged, "I couldn't think of anything?" He mused.
Leilas narrowed her eyes, then slowly turned away from them, and Tharas asked, "How long was I gone?"
"A couple weeks." Leilas said.
Orias raised an eye-brow, both their voices seemed to be distorting, he could barely understand it. Or hear it.
Leilas poked him, "Time to go." She laughed, and grabbed both Orias's and Tharas's arms, and Orias watched as his vision blackened.
Orias looked around, and asked, "Why did you take us to Azarath?"
"Because, where else am I going to find Yuna, I need to tell her what happened." Leilas replied, laughing, and led them to a large building, deep within the city.
Tharas asked curiously, "Where's Solaris?"
"Who knows with him," Leilas said calmly, and called, "Yuna!"
It was a couple seconds before Yuna stepped out of the doorway and said calmly, "I see you've found Tharas."
"It was more Orias found Tharas, then I found both of them." Leilas pointed out, smiling.
Yuna smiled also, and turned to Tharas, and asked, "Did you know what happened?"
"I'm afraid I'm not sure." Tharas muttered, Yuna looked at him for a moment, then turned to Orias, her eyes strangely narrowed.
Orias asked, "What?"
Yuna asked gently, "Is there something wrong, little one?" Her eyes were still oddly narrowed, Orias looked confused when her eyes seemed to have a reddish tinge to them.
Orias shook his head, "Uh, I'm fine." He said shakily.
He looked at all three of them, and it was like their whole aura had changed to a dark one, he heard Yuna ask, "Are you sure about that, Orias?"
Orias blinked, but everything was still distorting, and the cold he felt had come back, more intense. He said quickly, "I'm fine."
Yuna went silent, and said calmly, "You've drank the spirit's water, Orias."
Tharas and Leilas stared at him in horror, Orias laughed, "Nah, pretty sure I got it all out." He rubbed his head, it felt like it was pounding.
"Orias?" Yuna asked.
He looked at the both, and realised that the whole world seemed black, and Leilas whispered worriedly, "Is he... Having a vision?"
"No, this is the spirit water doing this." Yuna growled quickly.
Orias clenched his teeth, and said darkly, "I'm not having a vision."
Leilas stared at him, and Yuna sighed, "Whatever you say Orias, if you didn't swallow any of the water, then you didn't swallow any of the water." She walked back inside, and Leilas and Tharas watched Orias.
"You swallowed that horrible stuff, didn't you?" Leilas asked quietly.
"I didn't!" Orias snapped.
Leilas backed up, a shocked look on her face, and Orias breathed, he blinked, horrorfied. They were both glaring at him with red eyes, he turned away from them, and walked away. He heard Leilas call him, but ignored it, and closed his eyes, envisioning his home, and soon felt a rush of wind.
When he opened them the world seemed to be twisting, he looked ahead, and continued walking. He still felt cold, which confused him, Usually Hamark has a warm breeze... He looked around, then looked up at the mountain.
He jumped when it seemed to be smoking, he looked around, but saw no sign of fire. He rushed towards the mountain top, and ran into someone.
"We meet at the oddest times." Someone laughed.
Orias looked up to see Theria brushing herself off, and she asked quietly, "Did you find your friend yet."
He gaped at her, and she asked in concern, "Hey, are you all right?"
"Is Guagamela in flames?" He asked suddenly.
Theria looked confused, then looked up, she said, "Uh, nope. Looks white, as usual." She laughed. Orias said nothing, and stood up, trying to compose himself.
"Ah, I was just wondering, trick of the light then." He murmured, but when he looked up, it was still smoking, and the white city looked like it was in ruins. He flinched when Theria poked his arm.
"You didn't answer my earlier question." She pointed out.
"What?" Orias asked, and looked at her.
She was staring at him, and she repeated, "Are you feeling all right?"
Orias stared back, and nodded, "I'm fine." He hissed.
"I think you're not being completely honest with yourself." Theria pointed out. Orias shrugged, and jumped when Theria added, "For one, is it normal for old gods to look like the human equivalent of dying? You know... Deathly pale..." She mused.
"Normal?" Orias asked.
"You sound like you're out of breath." Theria pointed out.
"I just ran around the Lower Spirit World looking for my friend, went to Azarath-" He stopped, he remembered Yuna's odd gaze, a gaze that Solaris had.
Theria frowned, "You stopped."
"Stopped what?" Orias asked.
"In the middle of your sentence." Theria pointed out.
Orias blinked, and Theria reached a hand out, and stopped. She murmured, "You're practically radiating heat, Orias."
"Heat? It's freezing." Orias shivered.
Theria stared at him, putting her hand down, "Orias, have you seen mortals?" She asked quietly, her eyes widened.
"Not often." Orias muttered.
Theria frowned, "Well, I have, I've seen the worst." She murmured.
"I'm sure you have." Orias said.
Theria said nothing, but instead looked at the shadows around them, she walked up to a group of trees, "We're easily suspectible to the worst of nature, of other things." She murmured.
Orias asked, 'What are you trying to say?"
Theria said calmly, "Leilas, come out."
Leilas walked out of the shadows in front of Theria, her eyes looking at Orias, she still had that dark aura around her, and the red tinge to her gaze.
"Orias, hold on." Leilas said quietly as Orias started to back away from her.
Orias froze, Theria looked at Leilas, "What happened down there?" She asked quietly.
Leilas didn't answer her immediately, she walked up to Orias, and asked softly, "Why did you snap like that and run off, that's unlike you."
The world still seemed to be shifting, Orias murmured, "I'm sorry."
Leilas frowned. She grabbed his arm gently, and she murmured, "Are you... Seeing something?"
Orias stared at her for a long time, and soon her features started to come back, her eyes were no longer red tinged, but hazel, and the dark aura around her seemed to disappear.
He blinked, and shook his head. Leilas frowned, "You're still stubborn though..." She turned to Theria, and muttered, "He drank soul mirror water."
"What's that?" Theria asked.
"Your culture will understand it as spirit water." Leilas muttered.
Theria stared in shock, "That's poison." She said flatly.
"Yes, but it probably doesn't have the same effect on you as it does on us." Leilas looked at Orias, who was staring at them both. She asked, "You're feeling cold, Orias?"
Orias laughed, "Yeah, freezing actually, you'd think it was the dead of winter."
Leilas frowned, and Theria said, "As I said, you're radiating heat."
Before Orias could say anything, Leilas murmured, "If you were a mortal, that would mean you have a super high fever, or your dying," Leilas hesitated, then added, "However, if this is spirit water, this is a problem, you must have swallowed a lot more than you thought."
Orias looked down at the ground, which looked like it was shifting. He sighed, then looked at Leilas. Leilas blinked, and he murmured, "I... I just..."
His vision got blurry, Leilas was coming in and out of focus, her gaze worried. She murmured, "Orias, can you hear me?"
Theria said something, but it seemed distant, blurry. He looked back at Leilas, and murmured, "Leilas... I'm..."
"You're what?" Leilas asked.
"Sorry..." Orias murmured, and the chill turned into extreme heat, and his vision went black.
Leilas stared at Orias as he passed out from the spirit water, Theria's eyes widened in horror, Leilas said quickly, "Is there water near by? Are you camping somewhere? We need to get him somewhere safe."
Theria said quickly, "There's a huge lake nearby, and yes I'm camping."
"Let's get him to your camp then." Leilas said, supporting Orias.
Theria went to help her, and she asked curiously, "He's really sick, isn't he?"
"Yes, and it's going to get worse if he drank a lot." Leilas hissed worriedly.
Theria stared at her as she guided the two old gods to her camp, Orias was still radiating unnatural heat, Leilas heard Theria ask, "How long will this last?"
"It depends how much he drank." Leilas murmured, trying to search Orias's mind, but for the first time ever, instead of a raging and confusing storm. It was blank, and black. Unable to see through the darkness that blocked Orias's mind. The spirit water had done it's job, Who ever transported him into the soul mirror, wanted this to happen, but why... And who?
Leilas remembered the look on his face while talking to Yuna, It's unlike him to show that emotion, a horrible emotion, true fear. He feared us, and from I heard from Theria, feared the destruction of Guagamela, whatever he saw in that vision, ruined a very secured part of his mind. Something all old gods have, except when they have the sight...
They finally reached a small clearing with a couple tents, Leilas asked, "You're alone right?"
Theria nodded, "Yeah, just needed the extra space, had a feeling." She murmured, taking Leilas into the larger tent. They set Orias down, who's fever seemed to be getting higher.
"I'll get the water." Theria said quickly, and walked out of the tent.
Leilas looked around, there was a warm breeze, she looked down at Orias, and she murmured softly, "You can't always be right, Orias..."
Orias said nothing, and Leilas continued, "What you're about to face, will change you, you'll see your worst fears, a horrible usage of what you truly want most. I know because this has happened to me before." She murmured, staring down at her little brother.
Leilas smiled, "But you're you, you can do it, a storm is stronger than becalm." She said quietly.
Theria soon came back placing a bucket of water outside, she came in, and said, "The water is outside if you need it."
Leilas asked quietly, "Do you have a cold cloth, we can ease the tempature."
"Yes," Theria murmured, "I'll go get it."
Leilas nodded, and Theria stepped out, Leilas sighed, "When you started feeling the way mortals do, you wanted to be free of Solaris's influence, at first, I thought you were asking for this, but... I finally understand, your morality is greater than mine, and like your honesty, it will be the death of you," she said quietly, "You understand the humans need for freedom, for it is what you wanted of yourself."
Theria came back in, and she murmured, "There's a part of me that says this is my fault."
Leilas shook her head, taking the cloth Theria was holding, "No, it's no one's fault, it's not even his fault," She murmured, "Old gods are told what to do by Solaris and Yuna, and you may not know it, but Orias understands your situation, even though, before he met you, he just couldn't see it."
Theria frowned, and Leilas smiled, "Orias cares for very little people, or at least, the old god understanding of caring. But you're different, I think... This is the first time I've ever seen him like this, he actually does care for you, way past how we understand it, he just doesn't know it yet." She murmured.
Orias woke up to darkness, he sat up. He held his head, "What happened?" He murmured, looking up. He stood up, leaning on his sword, he no longer felt cold, but instead felt extremely hot. He looked around, and blinked.
What happened... It's all a blur... Orias thought quietly, the place he was standing in was distorting and black, he saw red-eyed shadows. He backed up a bit, but could barely lift his sword, he huffed, and jumped when Solaris came out of the shadows calmly.
Solaris waved, "Had an unfortunate accident, did we?" He asked carefully.
"Get out of my head!" Orias snarled, but didn't do anything, still leaning on his sword.
Solaris shrugged, "Whatever you say, your head will do damage to itself anyways, have fun with the spirit water." He said coldly, and he disappeared into the very shadows that were distorting the dream world in a horrorfying way.
Orias sighed, the shadows seemed to be getting longer and bigger, he clutched at his sword, and looked around. The shadows weren't attacking, not yet. But they would, but not in the way attacking was usually thought. He growled, "What are you waiting for?! It's not like I'm going to be ready anyways!"
The shadows seemed to be contemplating, and soon it got even darker, and Orias stopped leaning on his sword, and narrowed his eyes as the shadows started their attack.
Orias readied his sword, and watched as the shadows descended.
We fight for others.
Even though sometimes we may not always see it.
Leilas sat beside the campfire with Theria, Theria was staring up at the stars with a distant gaze, and Leilas asked carefully, "How long has the rebellion been going on now, Theria?"
"Eh, a while now, the king knows we're there, and we know that he knows. But who makes the first move, that's the mystery." Theria sighed, and looked at the campfire.
Leilas raised an eye-brow, "Haven't you made moves against him?" She asked curiously. Theria looked at her thoughtfully, reaching a hand to her necklace.
"Not out in the open, it'd be dangerous to face him head on, it kind of makes me impatient, fighting from the shadows, you get a lot done, sure, but so little to show for that work," Theria muttered, taking the necklace off. Leilas eyed the dragon necklace as she continued, "But he knows we're at the disavantage, but doesn't bother to even fight back."
Leilas frowned, I think I understand, you can't be open about your hate, even when the enemy knows. You need to hide, strike when needed and where needed. No wonder Solaris thinks mortals are quaint. She thought grimly, she hated Solaris, but she couldn't say anything, but he certainly knew she hated him.
Theria asked curiously, "How do you think you and Orias got teleported away from each-other? Didn't you tell me that you got teleported to this random clearing, inches away from spirit water?"
"I have lots of theories, did something make Orias jump? It looked like he was transporting us, but I don't know... It was different... I'm teleported inches away from spirit water, while Orias was thrown completely into it? Orias may be a bit reckless, but in no way is he stupid enough to think of a soul mirror as his destination." Leilas said thoughtfully.
Theria blinked, and Leilas continued, "Then I thought it was my mistake, but my way is a bit slower, I get more time to think about where I want to go, so it couldn't have been me."
"What about the old god you mentioned, Solaris?" Theria asked curiously.
Leilas frowned, "That's becoming more and more likely, however, he doesn't do things without reason, everything he does, he has a reasoning behind it." She murmured.
Theria frowned also. She had put the necklace back on, and sighed, "Looks like we're both facing the same problem."
Leilas nodded slowly, and she murmured, "Except, my enemy is one of the most powerful old gods."
Theria nodded in agreement. Leilas murmured, "I can't help but have this awful feeling, Solaris is planning something, I've tried telling Yuna, but she's assured me that nothing's wrong... But something is wrong, everyone except maybe Orias is afraid to see it."
Leilas looked up at Theria, who had a thoughtful look on her face, and she asked, "Do you think Solaris is afraid of you and Orias?"
Leilas laughed, "Why would he?"
Theria however, wasn't laughing. Leilas stopped laughing, and she murmured, "Now that I think about it... Maybe there's some part of Solaris that actually is afraid."
Leilas stood up, and muttered, "I wonder... He'll hate me when he finds out though."
"What?" Theria asked.
"Orias was given the sight from Solaris, at first I thought it was weird, and that Solaris did it on purpose just to mess with him, but now that you say that... Maybe it was by accident that Solaris gave him that power..." Leilas murmured, heading towards the tent Orias was resting in.
Theria mused, "And...?"
"I'm going to try and get into his memory of the vision." Leilas said.
"You can do that?" Theria asked, a slight hint of awe in her voice.
Leilas nodded, and walked inside the tent. Orias was sleeping, but he was still deathly pale, and slightly shaking. Leilas sat beside him, and closed her eyes, trying to reach to Orias.
I know you're going to hate me... But I need to know what you saw that day... Solaris might have hurt you, but he may have also given you a weapon to use against him. Leilas thought sadly.
The darkness was still there, still thick. It was extremely hot too. She thought, Come on Orias... Fight back... Let me see what you saw...
The darkness persisted, Leilas thought sadly, I'm trying to help you, Orias...
At that, the darkness turned into bright light, it almost hurt.
Leilas was standing in the bright and sunny Farlands.
However, it wasn't the Farlands Leilas knew...
Orias panted, most of the shades were gone, but some still lingered, and the dream world seemed to be shifting by the shades.
"Argh, stop it!" He snapped, leaning on his sword. The shades ignored him, and he jumped when the whole dream flashed white.
He looked up, raising an eye-brow, What the hell do you think you're doing, Leilas? He mused, then looked back down at the shades, who were frozen in confusion. He took his chance to dispatch the rest of them, and he sat down once they were all gone.
Orias brushed his hand through his hair, he looked at his hand, and realised it was shaking. He sighed, and jumped when the dream world turned even darker than it was before. But he was sitting at Guagamela, but it was in ruins surrounding him, looking like he destroyed Theria's home.
Orias flinched, standing up quickly, and almost falling down, "Stop messing with my head!" He snapped, shaking all over.
He reached for his sword, but he stopped. He was finding it hard to breath, and he growled, "Leilas, what are you doing, stop it..." Orias finally reached for his sword, clutching it, and he murmured, "Leilas, stop it... Please."
Orias stood up, facing the ruins of the white city. The whole thing was distorting, shaking, Orias walked up to the cave. He stared up at it.
"You've made your point! I don't need to see this scene anymore! I don't care if this is some event of the future, or a horrible nightmare! You've made your point, this has already affected me, it's starting to get old!" Orias snapped at the darkness, his eyes getting blurry.
The vision seemed to disappear, and he was in the dream world again. He looked around, frowning. He sighed, My head is pounding...
Orias shivered again, even though all he felt was extreme heat. He crossed his arms, and watched the shadows suspiciously as he leaned against a tree.
"Anything you have to show me I have already seen many times over." He muttered, staring at the shadows, narrowing his eyes.
How long is this going to last? Am I ever going to wake up from nightmares of the future? Orias mused. He tried not to close his eyes, the shadows no longer had the red tinge, but it was almost normal, calming even, as if something had chased away the shades, allowing him a bit of rest before they returned.
Orias smiled, Thanks, Leilas... He thought, before closing his eyes.
Leilas stared up at the Farlands, it was surprisingly a lot darker then they usually were, and a huge shadow was staring down at her.
Leilas wasn't sure what to think of the shadow, and she asked, "Are you part of the memory?"
The thing seemed to flick it's spiked tail, then Leilas understood, "You can hear and see me, but you can't say anything to me?" She asked.
The thing seemed to nod.
"Well, you see, I'm trying to help Orias, if you're part of his vision, can you at least make it brighter so I can tell what's going on?" Leilas asked gently, something about the thing was familiar.
It nodded, and soon, the Farlands were back to it's sunny clearings, but the shadow standing over her was a huge, icy white dragon.
"Oh, you're big." Leilas smiled.
It seemed to smile sadly back.
Leilas asked, "Can you show me the rest of the vision?"
It nodded, and soon the Farlands went back to their darkness, and the icy white dragon turned back into just a shadow, and soon they were standing on a mountain top. At first Leilas thought it was Tharas's mountain, but it wasn't.
It had a huge white city in the middle of it, but it was in ruins, and the dragon seemed bothered by this, bothered and deeply upset.
"Did you do this?" Leilas asked.
The dragon didn't answer, then it finally nodded, and indicated behind Leilas. She turned, and gasped when the mountain Tharas lived on had a dark aura, an evil aura.
She turned back, but the dragon was no longer there, she was alone, and she jumped when she heard Theria's voice, "Uh, Leilas?"
"Yeah?" Leilas called.
"You almost done?" Theria asked.
"I'm done," Leilas murmured, closing her eyes, and soon opened them to little light. Theria was sitting across from her, Leilas looked down at Orias sadly, who was shaking even more prominately, and she murmured, "I'm sorry, if I saw that, so did you..."
Theria asked, "What was it?"
Leilas stared at Theria, and murmured, "I knew... But now I understand why he wouldn't say anything," she sighed, "You can ask him when he's ready, I can't, not when I know he's so desperately trying to prevent it." Leilas brushed her hand through Orias's hair, he was radiating heat, and Leilas frowned.
Theria asked, "Don't you have any medicine that might help?"
Leilas looked at her, then nodded, "Yes, uh, do you have moonflowers?" She asked curiously
Theria looked at her curiously, then nodded, "Yeah, there's a clearing, most of them are only starting to grow though, and very few are fully grown." She replied.
Leilas whispered, "I only need one, that's all..."
Theria nodded, and walked out of the tent. Leilas sighed, and jumped when Theria returned, and Leilas said, "That was fast."
Theria nodded, and Leilas muttered, "Can I ask you something?"
Theria nodded, "Sure."
"Watch him for a bit, I need to go do something." Leilas hissed, anger rising within her, Theria nodded, and Leilas walked out of the tent. She stared up at the stars, her eyes narrowed.
Leilas closed her eyes, seeing the fields of the farlands. When she opened her eyes, she was in the farlands, but it seemed a bit too dark. She looked around, getting an odd feeling. Leilas huffed, and walked into the shadows, and called, "Solaris!?"
"Yes?" Someone asked curiously.
He stepped out of the shadows, and Leilas gripped her sword, he saw her movement, and asked, "You wish to do this now?"
Leilas snarled, "What are you thinking, Solaris? I can't see within your mind!"
"You wish to know what I'm thinking? Or my intentions?" He asked curiously. Leilas growled, and she took out her sword, and Solaris sighed, "I guess we are doing this now then."
Leilas watched as he took out his sword, and pointed it at her, and he asked, "Are you sure about this? Orias needs you more then you need to saturate your anger."
Leilas narrowed her eyes, and leaped at Solaris. Solaris jumped back when she landed where he was moments before, she had her sword pointed over his heart, and she snarled, "I could end you right now, you know I can."
"Yet, you won't." Solaris pointed out cooly.
Leilas blinked, and plunged her sword forward, but Solaris dodged easily, and he said coldly, "You can, but you won't."
Leilas gripped her sword, Solaris stared at her, and he muttered, "Right, you want me to suffer like your brother is."
Her eyes flashed, and Solaris gasped, she had her sword right to his chest, and she snarled, "Don't think it won't happen someday. Because it will, it just won't be me."
Solaris stared at her, and she huffed, "Now, you know why I called you here, and you'll give me the thing I want!" She snapped.
Solaris reached into his pocket, and took out a vial of golden liquid, "This?" He asked carefully.
Leilas stared at it, and he said cooly, "We both know that you won't remove your sword without me handing it over first."
He threw it to her and she caught it, but kept her position, and she snarled, "You didn't mess with it?"
Solaris shook his head, and stepped back, and waved, "You can choose to use it, or not." He walked back into the shadows.
Leilas lowered her sword, and frowned, kicking the grass, Ugh, I hate it when he's right, someday, I hope to prove him wrong. She looked at the golden liquid, and narrowed her eyes.
She looked around at the Farlands, surprised that it was dark, she closed her eyes, seeing the camp once again.
Leilas opened her eyes, and saw Theria by the fire, she was staring at it with distant eyes, and Leilas asked, "How is he?"
"In old god terms, or in human terms?" Theria asked curiously.
"Human." Leilas said calmly.
Theria hesitated, then said, "He looks like he's dying, but I know he isn't," she added quickly. Leilas nodded, and took out the golden liquid. Theria asked, "What's that?"
"Medicine." Leilas muttered, staring at it sadly.
"What's wrong?" Theria asked.
Leilas shook her head, "It's nothing," she murmured, she stood up, "I'll be right back." She walked into the tent Orias was sleeping in.
Theria was right, he hadn't changed, but at least he seemed more relaxed, she took the golden liquid, and stared at it. She sighed, "It's impossible to mess with this medicine."
She took the moonflower Theria brought, and looked at it also. She sighed, the moonflower was in full bloom when Theria brought it, she brushed the soft petals, and murmured, "Thank you."
Leilas waved it a bit, and noticed the small white pollen, she grabbed most of the powder, and brushed some of it in the liquid. It continued to be golden, and she sighed, "So he didn't mess with it, not sure whether to be glad or worried."
She grabbed a cup that was in Theria's bag, Theria had peeked in, and watched as Leilas dipped most of the golden liquid in the cup. Leilas stared upwards, and she asked, "Is it night?"
"It's nearing dawn." Theria murmured.
Leilas looked down at Orias then looked at the medicine, she sighed, and pocketed it. Theria asked, "You're not giving it to him?"
Leilas thought darkly, Well played, Solaris.
Theria blinked, and stepped back as Leilas walked out. Leilas murmured, "Don't trust anyone, Theria, don't tell anyone about us."
Leilas watched as Theria nodded, Leilas smiled, and walked to the shadows of the trees. She reached into them, and pulled out the book. She saw Theria tense up, and Leilas muttered, "This will be the real test. I'm going to give this to you, and if Orias is right to trust you, you'll know what to do with it."
She passed it to her, Theria caught it, and stared as Leilas faced the shadows again, and narrowed her eyes. She took out her sword, and she heard Theria gasp as the sword turned into a much bigger object, she slung the scythe over her shoulder, and Leilas turned back to Theria.
"I'll be back." She said calmly, and walked into the shadows.
Leilas closed her eyes, seeing Tharas's mountain. She jumped when she landed on the hard rock. She blinked, and realised she was looking up at the cave at the very top.
She walked in, and asked, "Garaos, you in here?"
"Yep! What do you need?" He asked cheerfully, Leilas rolled her eyes as he was sitting on top of the big boulder non-chalantly, staring at some cards curiously.
Leilas asked, "Where's Tharas?"
"Tharas?" Garaos mused, then looked past Leilas, and Leilas turned to see Tharas leaning against the rock, Tharas looked up at her.
"There must be reason you brought your very own weapon." Tharas mused.
Leilas smiled, and said, "Don't tell me you're curious," she took the scythe off her shoulder, and stood it upright like a staff, "I'm going to go to the Lower Spirit World."
Tharas raised an eye-brow, "Why'd you come here then, you don't need my permission to go." He said calmly, and smiled.
"Because..." Leilas hesitated, "I want you to come with me."
Tharas stared as she took out the medicine, "I couldn't do it, Tharas." She whispered.
He seemed to understand, "He knew your weakness." He muttered.
Leilas nodded, gripping the scythe, "Why couldn't I do it...?" She murmured.
Tharas sighed, then looked at Garaos, who looked back at him, and he murmured, "Watch this place Garaos, try not to make too much of a mess."
Garaos laughed, "Yeah, Tharas!" He waved.
Tharas walked up to Leilas, and Leilas watched as the mountain and Garaos disappeared around them. They were soon in the Lower Spirit World.
Tharas said calmly, "Don't blame yourself for what happened, Leilas." He walked forward.
Leilas frowned, and followed him. She listened for the restless spirits, but it was oddly quiet. Leilas whispered, "I was in the Farlands, Tharas."
"Yeah?" Tharas asked curiously, he looked around.
Leilas shivered, "For the first time ever, it was worse than this place."
Tharas turned to look at her, and frowned, and asked curiously, "How's Orias doing?"
"Could be doing better, but also could be worse," Leilas said quietly, "I left him with Theria," Tharas said nothing, he only sighed, and kept walking. Leilas raised an eyebrow, and asked, "Do you think I shouldn't have?"
"I don't know." Tharas looked up at the sky.
Leilas snarled, "Ugh, I hate it when Solaris can see right through me!"
Tharas turned back to her, and he smiled, "I'm going to help Orias." He murmured.
"Oh yeah, how?" Leilas asked carefully.
"Don't forget Leilas, both me and you know the inner workings of both worlds, Solaris doesn't, no matter how much he deludes himself." Tharas smiled, "But the one we both know best is the dream world." He said pointedly.
"Not like you to get this rebellious." Leilas said, and smiled.
Tharas frowned, and said cooly, "I've been waiting for this a long time, I've seen it, Solaris is getting impatient in his old age, he wants to finish this soon."
"Oh yeah, I've forgotton you had the sight like Orias does." Leilas muttered, and brushed her hand through her hair.
Tharas smiled, and said quickly, "Come on, Orias has to get through this himself, but we could provide support, by taking the darkness on, without him or the shades realising it."
Leilas nodded, standing close to Tharas, then she jumped, "Wait, but that means we have to go to the Farlands, and you can't go there." She pointed out.
Tharas sighed, "I've got to try."
Leilas frowned, and she whispered, "But, I wouldn't be able to do anything if you get hurt."
Tharas said calmly, "You don't have too, this is my choice."
Leilas watched as he opened a gate to the Farlands, and she thought, If he's willing to go this far just to help Orias, then those two must have a more closer bond than I originally thought.
The gate was opened, Leilas saw the sunny fields of the Farlands, however, she knew this isn't what Tharas saw, he was staring at it with flat eyes. He asked, "Are you ready?"
Leilas smiled, "Are you?"
Tharas smiled also, and they both ran toward the gate, Leilas thought, Just hold on Orias, you're not alone, never think you are.
When they landed in the spirit world, Leilas was about to keep running, but Tharas was looking around, his gaze darkened, Leilas hissed, "Come on, Tharas, just ignore it!"
Tharas looked at her, and nodded, then followed her, but there was no mistaking the red tinge in his eyes.
Orias panted, the shades were toying with him, he narrowed his eyes, and snapped, "Stop it!"
The shades looked at him confused, he swiped his sword at them, and said dangerously, "I'm not going to give up, no matter what you show me, I refuse to give up!"
He clutched the sword, still feeling the extreme heat, and he thought, If I get through this, I'll do everything in my power to protect Guagamela, all of Hamark. I won't let Solaris destroy the place I care for most, not while I'm still breathing!
Just as he launched himself at the shades, there was white flashes of light over his head. He stopped, and stared upwards, he tipped his head, and thought darkly, What's going on?
The shades seemed to retreat to the shadows. Orias frowned, and he heard a voice behind him murmur dangerously, "You're used to being alone."
He turned, and Solaris was standing there, but his eyes were narrowed in open hate, and he seemed unimpressed, Orias snarled, "I said to stay out of my head!"
"Yet you didn't force me out, I left of my own accord." Solaris sneered.
Orias growled, "Haven't you done enough damage?"
"I'm simply here to give you a warning from Yuna," he walked up to Orias, and said, "Your little mortal friend is in danger the longer you stay asleep, but I don't mean the literal sleep, she says you should wake up, and she means you should really wake up."
Orias stared at him, and growled, "How do I know you're not just toying with my head."
"You'd know if I was. However, Yuna had asked politely, so I complied and was sent to give you the warning, besides, I want to see what happens." Solaris said dangerously.
Orias watched as he took out his sword, Orias backed up, and took out his own, but immediately leaned on it, and Solaris sighed in annoyance, "You're in no condition to fight, I'm going to see if you're even willing to wake up, or if you want to get out of this nightmare. That is... If you're strong enough to fight back."
Orias asked curiously, "So you're going to kill me right here?"
Solaris narrowed his eyes, "Not in the sense, I can't kill you this way, I can heavily damage you though, however, I am not underestimating you. I will not make that mistake again with you." He leaped straight at Orias, while Orias watched, unsure and unable to do anything to defend himself.
"Remember Orias, you wanted to be free of me? Well this is what you must go through to get it." Solaris hissed as he neared Orias, his golden sword piercing through the darkness.
Leilas and Tharas were fighting of the shades that had come, but Leilas stopped. What... What is this feeling? She looked around, and most of the shades seemed to be slowly evaporating, she said faintly, "Oh, that can't be a good sign..."
Tharas looked around, and muttered quietly, "That can't be right..."
The darkness seemed to be getting even thicker, and Leilas widened her eyes, "No way, he couldn't have... It's not like him!" She said in growing horror.
Tharas looked as horrorfied as she did, he looked around suddenly, "We have to get out of here Leilas!" He yelled as the dream started to shake.
"You go, you're in more danger than I am! I need to go deeper into the dream!" Leilas called back and before he could protest, she held out her hands, and he disappeared into the shadows. She ran down the into the darkness, and she snarled, "I'm not going to let you give up so easily, show me you haven't given up, force me out, Orias!"
Leilas took out her scythe, and swiped at the darkness just as a shape flew past her. Her vision was darkening, and she thought, Yeah... I thought so, you can beat back his mind games, so don't ever give me that feeling again!
She felt herself blasted out of the dream, and back into the Farlands, she rolled away from the gate as it closed sharply behind her, she sat up, and smiled.
"That's the Orias I know." Leilas laughed, and thought, However, Theria might get the wrong idea, I better hurry.
Leilas ran to a soul mirror, and thought of Theria's camp, and jumped in. She heard the familiar crack of the mirror, and she landed on soft grass, the moon raising over the horizon.
Theria was sitting by the campfire thoughtfully, and she looked up when Leilas ran towards her, and asked, "How is he?"
"Last I looked, he was normal, why-?" But she didn't get the chance to ask, Leilas walked over to the tent, she looked down at Orias, and narrowed her eyes at him. He had stopped breathing, but she knew he was alive, Come on Orias, don't let him get to you, you have to wake up now!
It felt like forever before Orias took a deep breath and his eyes snapped open in wide blue fright, he sat up quickly, going for his sword, but Leilas held him down, and whispered, "Relax, he didn't get you, you must have really showed him."
Orias looked around, and asked in a rasp, "Where am I?"
Leilas said, "You're at Theria's camp, you were out for a long time, Orias."
Orias looked up at her, and blinked, he held his head, Wow, for a second there, I felt the sword, then everything went dark, was I really dead?
Leilas asked, "Are you feeling all right?"
"What do you think?" Orias asked quietly, shivering, Leilas sighed.
"I'm afraid you're going to be out of commision for a while, but I don't think it's safe for you to return to Azarath." Leilas said quietly.
Orias looked up at her, and realised she looked really tired, Orias asked quietly, "Are you all right?"
Leilas nodded, "You've got to start worrying about yourself sometimes, seriously." She laughed.
Orias stared at her, and couldn't even think of a snarky retort, he sighed, lying back down, "I feel like horses ran over me." He muttered through his hands.
Theria finally came in when he sat back up, Leilas asked curiously, "Solaris actually allowed you to get away?"
"No, he wanted to see how far I would go. I blocked his attack at the last second, but after that, I really don't remember." Orias said calmly.
"He released you, I can't believe it." Leilas said, rubbing her head.
"Uh... Release?" Theria asked.
Leilas turned to her, and explained, "All old gods are somehow tied to the original two, but to release an old god, they may be free, but it's also a garuntee, that sooner or later, they will fall, the old god equivalent... Of death."
Orias looked down, they both watched as he suddenly stood up, and he smiled, "Well, looks like I have a lot of stuff to do before that happens. Solaris won't get the advantage." He said quickly.
Leilas asked, "What are you thinking?" She stood up also.
Orias looked at Theria, who looked back at him, and he asked, "How long before the king attacks Guagamela you think?"
Theria looked on thoughtfully, "From what I have heard, it's going to be soon, he wants to send a message to us." She murmured.
Orias turned away from them, and growled unnaturally, "He won't even get past the white gate."
Theria raised an eyebrow, and asked, "How do you plan to do that?"
"I'm an old god, remember, I may be weakened, but that doesn't mean I can't use my powers in a different way." Orias said.
Theria looked unsure, than looked at Leilas, who shrugged. Theria said, "All right, if you think it will keep him away," she smiled, and said, "Let's do it."
Orias smiled also, and said, "Let's go to the gate and you'll see."
Theria grabbed Orias's arm, and Orias closed his eyes, seeing the white gate, and soon they landed by it. Theria shook her head, and said, "I don't think I'll ever get used to that."
Orias looked at the gate, and went to the other side, and indicated for Theria to follow, which she did. Orias thought grimly, I hope this works...
He took out his sword, and stuck it in the ground in the middle of the gate. He placed his hands on it, and closed his eyes. Envisioning a great barrier surrounding the city, with the gate as the entrance point.
"Woah." Theria muttered from behind him, he opened his eyes, and took out his sword, and he saw as a great blue field raised up around the city, and disappear. She whispered, "Are you sure that it will help, Orias?"
"We'll find out sooner or later." Orias said, staring up at the gate.
Theria stood beside him, arms crossed. She smiled, and said under her breath, "Thank you, Orias, for everything."
Orias didn't hear her, he was only staring back up the mountain with hidden fear.
I can't let Solaris destroy this place. I can't... He looked back at the gate, as the sun set across from them.