The Rise Of Evil Chapter 2
Marle and Lucca were exhausted. It was nearly five in the afternoon and they hadn't rested since they had gotten up. Crono'd woken in the morning at the crack of dawn and hadn't even stopped for lunch. Marle's legs were numb from the burning and she was starving. Lucca too was very hungry and was near the point of passing out. She doubted even that would stop him right now.
Crono knew he was near the top. He'd been here before, four hundred years ago. Things change, he'd nearly gotten lost once, but he found his way and they were near the summit. Marle and Lucca were dragging about ten yards behind him. He decided to slow down so they could catch up.
"Hey, let's break for a minute, eh?" Marle asked.
Lucca added, "Really, my legs are so sore I can barely feel them."
"Fine, we'll rest, but not for long. We still have a ways to go." They sat in the shade of trees for ten minutes. Crono finally realized that he too was quite hungry and went to pick some apples off a nearby tree. When he returned he saw the two of them looking at the horizon. They were sitting on the edge of a cliff.
"What are you doing?"
"Crono," Marle said, "you know where we are?"
"This is the place where we found the Kilwala. We annoyed it so much that it gave us a power tab." She giggled remembering it. Crono chuckled at the memory. The little thing was quite funny, but it really had no people skills.
"So that means the cave must be down and around there," Lucca pointed. Crono helped them both up and they were off.
In another ten minutes they arrived at the mouth of the cave. It was a small thing, but looks can be deceiving. As small as the mouth was, the inside was a million times bigger.
When they stepped inside looked the exact same as it had four hundred years ago. Not one difference. The wind still howled, and the same cracks lined the walls. Crono expected to see the Masamune stuck into the altar.
"Now what?" Marle asked. Crono didn't answer, he just walked up to the altar.
He began whispering so low he could barely hear himself. "Please father if you're here, if you're really somewhere, send a sign. Please." He fell to his knees in front of the altar and began praying even harder.
Lucca looked at Crono with a lot of surprise, but even more sympathy. She had no idea what it was like to not have father. None whatsoever. It had to have been scary.
Unlike Lucca, Marle felt so much understanding. She nearly wept herself as she saw him kneeling, hoping against hope that there might be some way to see his father. She knew what it was like not to have a father. She knew only too well. With her dad being so distracted all the time the two of them had lived very similar lives. She now understood what he was going through, and would've given her right eye to stop it.
"Please, if you're really there, give me some sign." Crono finished his prayer. He stood up and looked around. He scanned the walls, he peered into the sky, he tapped the ground and stared at the altar. Nothing. "Useless," Crono uttered.
Just as he was about to leave a big blue bolt of lightning zipped down from the hole in the ceiling. IT crashed into the altar with a deafening BOOM! and knocked the team down. Marle opened her eyes and saw the first change in the room for four hundred years, the altar was gone. Blown apart by a blast of magical lightning. To her left she saw Lucca, and sprawled in front of her was Crono. She crawled to him and checked him. He was waking up. She would've laughed at that sentence yesterday, Crono never woke up on his own. Lucca was moaning. She was okay too. But what had happened?
"What? Uuhhh." Crono was waking. He shook his head, his hair flying every which way, and looked up at Marle. "What happened?"
"I don't know. Last thing I remember was a blue lightning bolt."
"Same here," Lucca added.
"You're awake!" Marle exclaimed.
"Yes, I'm fine." She fixed her glasses and ogled over the altar. "Look, the altar's gone. Crono, if you'd been two feet closer you'd be fried like chicken right now."
"No kidding." He added. They stood up and walked to the charred thing. Lucca looked around and saw no fragments of the altar, no pieces blown apart. It must have disintegrated she concluded.
Right before Marle was going to say something a blue orb of light rose from the ground. It hovered in front of them for a moment.
"Wow," was all Lucca could say. The others were speechless. It flashed once and then became the form of a man. He was dressed in royal Zeal clothes.
"Belthasar," Crono uttered. He could barely speak. It was very odd to see a dead man materialize in front of you.
"True, it is me, Belthasar. I trust the Epoch was a good ride? Did you enjoy it? Was it comfortable?"
"Yes, we loved it, and the seats were nice too," Lucca answered.
"Good, I always try my hardest."
"Why are you here?" Marle asked.
"Good question. I have seen many things. After I died I went to a far better place. I have been there for quite a while now, and I despise coming back to your reality. Filled with such petty rivalries and war. I really hate it here, but I knew it was what I needed to do. You see, sometimes things come back. Maybe as a ghost, or maybe as a guide. I didn't want to come back but I knew I must. I know things that would turn you white. I have known these things since the time of Zeal."
"What is it?" Crono asked.
"No matter. It will be explained to you. But listen, we aren't safe here. Not by a long shot." He pointed to a spot in the wall and a blue gate appeared. "Please, step in there. I beg of you. Just listen to me and I will explain later. He's coming, I can feel it." They looked at each other for a moment. they'd never been so confused in their lives. Belthasar came back as a ghost to tell them to stop an evil with an odd name and now wanted them to go gallivanting across time again. But why? He was very vague in the details. But they shrugged their shoulders and went through the gate.
Magus took Schala back to a private hut east of the Earthbound village. It was a cave filled with Zeal's rugs, statues, and other things he salvaged from the bottom of the ocean. He'd looked there first because the most logical place would be where Zeal fell. After that he went in search of where the Black Omen had crashed. The thing had fallen to the ocean after they killed the queen.
Now he looked on his sister for any sign of hypothermia, broken bone, or any other harmful thing. She was in perfect health. She'd somehow been perfect. Magus concluded that she must've recently been put on that mountain. He didn't know how, and the only person that could tell him was asleep.
An hour after he brought her to his home she woke up. She shook her head and threw the hair out of her face. She looked around the cave/hut and went side eyed.
"Zeal? But wait, this looks like the Earthbound village. Where am I?"
"Schala," Janus called.
"I know that voice." Janus stepped out of the shadows. "Prophet. I though you were dead by now. After I beamed you and my friends out I hoped they would realize you are scum."
"They knew exactly what scum I am. They were the ones who inadvertently sent me to you."
"Really? How did they manage that?"
"Because they used one of their blue gates. A massive one sucked me and all of them into different times. I arrived back in Zeal for the second time in my life."
"Second? You were born in Zeal?"
"I was a very powerful man in Zeal. I was a prince actually."
Schala looked at him queerly. "A prince?"
"I had a mother, but she turned on me just as she turned on you. She never loved me the way she did you, at least not after she was possessed. Then she meddled with powers far beyond her control and got me sent into a place far, far into the future. Now, at that time I wasn't aware I had any magical powers until a ruffian named Ozzie taught me how to tap into my powers of Shadow."
"And you found a back," Schala murmured. "With your knowledge of the future it made you seem like a prophet, but it was really only a big ruse."
"You're smarter than even I imagined."
"Janus?" she asked with tears forming in her eyes.
"It is I, your brother." They ran to each other and embraced.
He told her of some of the things he had done over the past seventeen years. She forgave him for all of it, and told him it wasn't really his fault. Time passed and they began to laugh, and all the years he missed seemed inconsequential to him. They were together again.
Suddenly as they grew more tired a black portal opened near the mouth of the cave. Out stepped the queen of Zeal.
"You naughty kids, I should teach you a lesson!"
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