Fate of Io
24. The Deadly Miracle
Last updated at 2003/06/15 18:22:20 PDT by Dev
  • As the ship and the dragon approach Io, they find that Pylos Epsilon is cruising the water right ahead of them. Everyone gets a sinking feeling of deja vu, but this time Epsilon is moving away and there is no TW fleet in sight.

  • Cade, looking through the ship's navagation equipment, thinks he can see people moving around in the town. Brooke is skeptical; there was no one left after Tyrus utterly destroyed everyone there. After a moment, Epsilon sinks from view. Syne figures they have no other choice but to dock and see what's happened.

  • Aequus lands and the ship docks, and the party breaks up to observe the town (another instance where the player controls only Syne).

    • Syne finds a girl sitting in a field of flowers, staring up at the clouds. She thinks perhaps she should go make lunch for her grandfather, but quickly dismisses the idea; the flowers and clouds are so nice that she could just lay there forever.

    • Syne passes by a distraught young man, who is able to tell Syne that everyone's been alive for a few days now, since the large black ship came. But since then, everything's gone wrong. His wife-to-be suddenly left him the other night, and he can't find where she's gone off to.

    • Some kids a rioting down the road, and have started a fight. The adolescent Antareans are "being dragons" again, but they are giving no mercy. The attacks on the other kids are real. So is the sword fight between two bullies, and one stabs the other squarely. Syne watches in horror as the kids literally try to kill each other. He stumbles away from the scene to find some adults, and doesn't see the stabbed kid get up from where he'd been wounded and run after the others, quick to join back in the fight.

  • The party reconvenes at the back edge of the town, and they are all highly disturbed by what's gone on. Cade is the one to state the obvious; everyone's been ressurected, just like Syne and Kydran had been. Brooke is overwhelmed to find the Protean ore being used for this. In all their wonder and concern, Enna notices that a gate nearby is unlocked that wasn't before. It leads down a path to a very old-looking building, rotting against the side of a steep rock hill.

    • The building appears to be a library, completely empty. Rush believes that they are getting close to what they are looking for. After [solving a intriguing puzzle], they discover a hidden entrance to a chasm beneath the building.

      • They discover a lab and an archive, sitting in ruins, festering beneath ages of dust. Some places, however, look newly disturbed, as both Syne and Rush are quick to notice. Dell definitely thinks they've found the resting place of that ancient scholar's work. Rheya nods, finding some remnants of Antarean script among the desks and equipment.

      • A voice comes from the entrance of the cavern, and confirms their hypothesis. Kydran stands there, proudly looking over them. He explains that he'd already been here; it was quite valuable in designing and creating a line of TW products.

      • Rheya is angry, hearing that the TW enterprise was simply a heist off of some ancient research; she curses Kydran, who had no right to exploit another Antarean like this. Kydran seems to respond with contempt for that Antarean, and seems merciful to Rheya. Her abandoning Pylos is of no concern to him; he will have his goals in order very soon.

    • A voice from above booms Kydran's name, and it takes everyone a moment to realize that Aequus is outside.

      • Kydran turns and goes to face Aequus. Rush, Syne, Rheya, and Brooke follow Kydran up from the building to the outside. The dragon towers over the small Antarean, and demands to know what happened to him since the war. Kydran used to be humble, Aequus recalls, and cool-headed.

      • Kydran spits back at the dragon that since the war he's had ever-increasing pain from what he did in that last battle. So much death, and now he's had an opportunity to right what he did. Aequus tries to argue that it isn't that easy, but Kydran turns their argument into an exchange of challenges.

      • A fight between them erupts. Ultimately, with the party's help, Aequus is able to kill Kydran.

      • A blue glow comes from Kydran's body, and the Antarean gets right back up again with an amused fit of laughter. Kydran explains that he's been implanted with a device which automatically casts the resurrect spell on him whenever it senses his heartbeat cease. It seems pointless to kill him, he challenges.

      • The party kills Kydran. Again, and again, and again. Syne, distraught with the familiarity of the blue glow of the resurrection, finally holds them back, exhausted from fighting the unkillable opponent.

    • Syne goes up to Kydran, to test another theory. Syne tells the Antarean about Kydran's own dreams, that he's been having them as well. Kydran nods, and tells Syne he must then know why Kydran is doing what he's doing. Syne can't blame him, and Kydran walks away.

  • The party rests in the cavern under the library. Rush looks around and finally spots something interesting. He recalls what the ivory dragon had told him; they [use this information to get past another puzzle or something] and gain access to a small room that's truely been untouched.

    • Rheya is in TW research heaven. She immediately starts looking around for something of importance. Syne helps her in her search for the safegaurd; they look through journals, illustrations, and books for any clue.

    • Finally, Rheya comes across a journal entry with many marginal drawings and notes. After reading it, she slowly begins to understand what she's looking at.

    • She explains it to the rest of the party, Aequus listening just outside. It's a spell designed to expel the capabilities of the ore from their world. Rush suddenly nods with awe, but some (like Cade, Dell, and Ko (yes, Dell should know what they're getting at, but he's slow anyway)) don't get it. If the ore is no longer able to channel magic energy, there will no longer be any magic at all with nothing to power it.

    • Brooke wants to get this straight; they simply cast this spell and no more magic? Dell is also uncomfortable with the simplicity. Rheya points out that the resurrection spell is just as "simple". Both spells, of course, require an enormous power capacity to cast. This is why Kydran needs the amount of ore gathered in Epsilon.

    • Rush finds their task simple. They must infiltrate Kydran's ore, ready it for use by Brooke, Dell, and Rheya (yes, mages can combine their efforts), and cast the expel of magic power so no one will ever be able to abuse the power again.

    • "Abuse!?" Cade doesn't see what's wrong here. Syne tells him that Kydran wants to abolish death, to make it simply not exist anymore. The ex-general must have overwhelming feelings of remorse over his actions in the war, and he feels that he can make it up by doing this. Cade maintains that it doesn't sound very evil or sinister; it sounds like one of the most philanthropic acts he could think of.

    • Enna tells Cade to open his eyes. He saw what it was like up there, in the town of people who can't die. She thinks that perhaps Kydran doesn't quite see the full ramifications of what he plans; eternal life means much more than simply avoiding death. It brings with it implications that destroy the fabric of civilization; everything they've done as a people is based off the fact that no one lives forever. Their society is what lives on, not the people in it. She agrees with Rush; Kydran is meddling with powers that are not meant to be altered, and he must be stopped.

    • Syne finally nods. He's always felt that his second chance for life was some sort of perverse mistake. This is not the way it should be. There is unseen damage in cheating death; it makes people no longer care. If you aren't careful, it can destroy the bond between people altogether. At that, he and Enna catch each other's eye.

  • The party returns to the surface in time to see Pylos Epsilon again. It makes one pass along the horizon, then slowly lifts out of the water and into the air, supported by its own immense magic. Soon, it dissappears on the western horizon.

    • Syne knows where Kydran is headed; he's seen it in his dreams. Kydran is going to bring back everyone he killed in the Battle of Tarikun. This makes Ko start; would that include his mother and Kory? Syne looks to Brooke, who has an incredibly pained expression on her face.

    • Rheya tries to get Ko to understand why they're doing what they're doing, but Ko suddenly makes her realize she doesn't need to. The boy understands, making some comment about it being "already in the fire."

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