Prologue – A Beginning From Old Ends
A flash of light — the clang of clashing weapons.
“You… ignorant fools…!”
The world flipped upside down, the sky and ground literally changing places — only to be reversed again a moment later.
“I… was saving our galaxy…!”
A red-haired woman with a blue and golden sword charged forward, paying her allies little heed as she brought her weapon down on her opponent. The dark-skinned monster summoned a giant black and silver scythe from thin air, as he had done countless times before, and parried away the sword — knocking it out of the woman’s hands. Yet still she charged forward as the blade simply reappeared in her hands, ready again to be swung.
“It is thanks to me you still live… and yet you seek the death of me and my kind?!”
“How can you possibly believe that?” a black-haired woman cried from the side as she chucked a pair of chakrams toward the monster. “You and ‘your kind’ did nothing to save us or ours! When we reached out to you, prepared to exchange peaceful words, you turned us down!”
“Because your kind betrayed my trust and ambushed me and my forces!” The dark-skinned creature paused for a moment to knock back both the woman with a sword and a silver-haired man with a chain weapon. Both tumbled along the ground before quickly picking themselves up and rushing in to attack again, showing no interest in the exchange of words.
“I won’t deny that we’ve made some mistakes,” the black-haired woman continued, summoning the chakrams back to herself as she watched the battle from afar. “But neither were we unjustified in our actions. If the safety you’d bring involves visiting disaster upon all of our worlds… then we want no part in it!”
“Huu…raaaaghhhh!” With a roar, the humanoid monster raised the ground around him and replaced the rest of the cavern with an endless abyss, causing his opponents to fall and fall — until the black-haired woman called out “Chaos Reset.” The abyss immediately reverted to the dimly lit cavern from before, leaving the monster surrounded and defenseless.
“You do not seem to understand the circumstances…” He turned toward the woman to address her, seemingly unconcerned with his other opponents despite his lack of defenses. “It is truly unfortunate that this galaxy has suffered so much, but without my drastic actions, it would have been outright destroyed! That you cannot see nor accept this is proof enough!”
“You’ll have to pardon us if we don’t believe you,” the red-haired swordswoman replied. “You — and you alone — are the cause for all of this destruction, Ikirom. Even our conflict with the Drakkars did not cause so much death and loss — as it stands, your appearance marked the beginning of the end! And by the name of the Raen lineage, I will have you pay for your sins!”
“…Hmph,” the monster snorted, once again summoning a large scythe and wielding it in a defensive stance. “…You may be Keys… but on what grounds do you think you can defeat me? Me, who holds reality itself in my hands—!”
His words were cut off as a streak of light pierced his torso from behind. The blow forced him to his knees, his dark eyes wide in shock before turning to the swordswoman in a rage — where his gaze froze. In the swordswoman’s hand was a silver sphere, just small enough to grasp perfectly. Ikirom then noticed a number of other gemstones falling on the ground around him as the swordswoman thrust her arm forward and called out, “Chaos: Seal!”
“Arrggh!” The monster felt himself forced into a standing position as the gemstones around him began to glow. Pale blue light appeared beneath his feet, outshining the rest of the dim cavern lighting as his extremities began to dissolve away like mist.
“You… you fools actually used it…” he growled, his eyes darting between the swordswoman, the man with the chain weapon, the woman with the chakrams, and a man with a bow, who had just appeared. The monster then glanced down at his legs and up at his arms, where his body was slowly disintegrating into a blue mist. “This is not the end!” he roared, his attention now focused on the swordswoman. “You know as well as I that this is no end! Curse you and your descendants, Aldredians! Curse your role as the Keys, and curse the Priors and the Oraculm for orchestrating this mad conflict!” By this point, his arms and legs had wholly disappeared as the blue mist slowly worked its way up his torso. “I will obtain my revenge! I will never forget this betrayal! Carry with you to your deaths the knowledge that you have doomed this galaxy to oblivion, not I!” His glare deepened as only his head and neck remained, yet his attention still fell solely on the swordswoman. “For the Morikai…
were never the true threat!”