Well, this is my very first post ever on these forums, so I will see how things go. Anyway, the first four chapters of my story are on the fanfiction section of the RPGclassics site, but for the sake of more feedback I thought I would post it here as well. This is the first chapter, but currently I have up to chapter 5 complete. In addition, I tend to be somewhat of a scattered writer, and I have written a lot of later parts, including the end. I am now filling in all the gaps. A little about my fanfic and stuff before I get to the actual story…
It’s my first fanfic ever. Actually, it’s the first thing I’ve ever written over 10 pages long. I am writing it as a stand alone sequel to the events of CT/CC, meaning that all characters are introduced and described anew…something a little odd for a fanfic, if I’m not mistaken. Anyway, this here is the first chapter, and the earliest of my writing which I wrote last october. Therefore it is not the best of my writing by far. I have been told that the dialogue is over simple, and in rereading it I would tend to agree. In my opinion I have better dialogue in futher chapters, and so opted to keep this beginning chapter unchanged. Even so I welcome any critisism that you would be willing to give. Oh, the prologue I wrote much more recently so if it sounds different in style, that’s why. (And I know the title is probably the most lame one I could possibly have come up with, but it was sort of a working title that turned into the actual one…though I am thinking of changing it.)
Anyway, on to the story…
Twilight of Fate
Ere Rome fell a small kingdom arose far to the west, where its power did not hold. Built upon an island far to sea it was founded by a rogue centurion of Rome, disillusioned with the conquest he so blindly sought in serving his empire. This was Guardia, and for one thousand years it thrived unconquered. Rome fell, it lasted. The years of dark sorcery and mystics came upon the world. Shadows crept slowly west from forgotten realms, and ancient evils unseen for millennia stirred once more. A mighty sorcerer strove for mastery of the lands. Many were the fruitless deeds of valor done in those years as Guardia strove against his legions. But heroes came forth, and so it yet endured. Its kings never sought for power or dominion as other lords did, and so the kingdom had long years of peace and prosperity. Yet after one thousand years a mighty empire arose at last. Far to the sought, while the people of northern Guardia lived yet content as they had for centuries, a power unmatched since the ancient ages of Rome arose, and the kingdoms of the world fell beneath the new born might of Porre. Yet the people of the small land of Guardia did not take kindly to the constraints of conquerors… and a prince yet lived. And yet no ordinary prince this was. For he was a hero, a mighty warrior who defied the most ancient evils and to whom time itself had once been as an open road. He yet resisted, and strove against the conqueror’s armies. For fifteen years he worked in secret, as a sudden shadow of night, striking swiftly and ever returning whence he came, unseen to the eyes of his enemies. Yet empires do not fall by the hands of one alone. And so before those years were ended, war would once more come upon the land. And far to the west of even the westward land of Guardia, tremors of this coming doom crept…
Chapter 1: Echo of a Lost Past
The vast ocean stretched as far as the eye could see. Crimson and gold light from the setting sun danced merrily on the surface, glittering like a thousand jewels. Alone on this vast and tranquil expanse a lone boat swept through the water. It was a small fishing boat, in the style of a catamaran, with an offset second hull. Its single white sail fluttered in the gentle evening breeze that pushed the boat onward. At its prow stood a solitary figure, staring out at the sea. He smiled at the world around him, so peaceful. He loved the sea. He closed his eyes, the soft sea spray washing across his face, the wind blowing merrily through his deep blue hair. He opened his eyes again. In the distance the shore of a far off land was just visible, floating on the horizon. Home, for him. He turned from the front of the boat and grabbed the tiller in the rear. The boat was nearly full with a day’s catch of fish. He was almost sad to be returning home, he loved the sea so, the solace it provided. It freed his mind of his worries, being so alone...
The boat glided softly across the water with hardly a sound, the distant land growing swiftly larger. The boy at the tiller put his hand in the sea, letting the cool, rushing water flow between his fingers. Looking to the west he saw the crimson sun falling slowly into the sea.
“Hey, Serge! You’re back!”
The boy looked up. He had been too busy staring out to sea to realize he was nearly ashore. A small fishing village was on the coast a hundred feet ahead. On the pier a young girl stood waving. She had obviously been waiting for him. Returning the wave, he expertly guided the boat to the piers.
“Have a good day fishing?” the girl asked merrily.
The boy nodded. The fishing had been very good. He leaped out of the boat onto the solid wood of the pier, sending the boat rocking backwards. He quickly grabbed a rope and tied the boat to a post of the pier to prevent the craft from returning to sea.
The boy, whose name was Serge, was actually only a few short weeks shy of 18, and so, by the standards of his village, was very nearly a man. Of average height in his village of Arni, he was around 5 seven, but had never actually measured. He also looked younger than he actually was, his boyish face taking a few years off his age. On his head deep blue hair fell down his head and into his eyes, whose hue seemed to echo that of the sea itself. His face was kind, and, though he talked little, he was friendly enough. For clothes he was dressed in the typical Arni fashion: Large boots, long blue shorts, and a black short sleeved shirt. Over this he wore a light vest, leather on the top, with mail rings from his chest down. A large belt was strapped around his waist. On his hands were worn leather gloves, and about his head a red bandana was wrapped, his deep blue hair sticking out from beneath it in strands.
The girl standing on the pier before him was dressed in a long blue dress, over which she wore elaborately embroidered overclothes in shades of maroon and black. Her long brown hair fell back from a quiet, gentle face, with kind eyes.
“Hi Leena,” Serge greeted her, smiling, “waiting long?”
“Oh, no. I just wandered out here a little while back. Watching some of the neighbour’s kids, you know.”
That was Leena, always helping out in the village in some way: odd chores, babysitting…whatever needed to be done; if Leena could help she did. But that was just her way.
“So, I see fishing was good today,” she noted, kneeling and taking a peek into the boat.
“Really good. The sea was perfect…” he said, glancing out to sea as they walked up the pier together.
They strolled off the pier and proceeded down the sandy beachfront that ran between the village and the ocean. He spent most days such, talking with Leena after a day’s fishing. Leena was by far his best friend, perhaps more than a friend. Moreover, she was always willing to listen to whatever he had to say, which he was very grateful for. Especially during the past few months. Ever since a very frightening experience he had had, talking to Leena on the beach in just such a way.
He had been with her, talking, farther down the island. Then, for no reason he could remember, he had blanked out. He could recall little of those few minutes, yet he seemed to think that he had heard a voice, someone calling his name, just before he had passed out. Leena told him she hadn’t heard anything. When he had awoken he had been very disoriented. He remembered Leena kneeling over him, trying to revive him. Then, he couldn’t recall for what reason, he had stood up and asked Leena something. Something about Fate, and a thing called “Terra Tower.” He had no idea, now or then, what it meant. However, he had the distinct impression that he had known at the instant he had uttered the question, but, just as a dream fades from memory on the moment of awakening, the words ceased to have any meaning to him. He could never remember why he had spoken them. Leena had borne it with her usual grace, dismissing it as a mere dream, the product of an idle mind. But Serge was not totally convinced. He had tried to assure himself that Leena was in all likelihood correct, but still his heart had misgivings. His mind told him, as Leena, to ignore it…but somewhere in his heart he seemed almost to know otherwise. He had often voiced this to Leena on their evening walks, but, as compassionate as she was, she had no answers either. He looked at Leena, walking beside him on the sand. Perhaps had the incident remained just that, he would have forgotten about it by now.
But, to make matters worse, the event seemed to repeat itself each and every night. His unconscious mind was haunted by mysterious images he could never quite remember when he awoke. He stared out at the sun, watching it set in all its golden glory.
“I had another dream last night…” he mentioned to Leena.
Leena sighed, having expected this.
“Can’t you just forget about them, Serge?” she replied, stopping and turning to face him. “You can never remember them anyway. How can you know they mean anything? They’re just dreams after all!”
Serge halted also and, turning his face from the sun, looked at Leena.
“Maybe…but maybe not. I just don’t know Leena…that’s the problem.”
“I understand…well, let’s just forget about it for a while and enjoy the evening. Watch the sun set. Maybe you’ll feel better.”
Leena was right. What was the use of worrying about future or past? The future brings what it will, though no one knows exactly what. One can only make the best out of what it has in store. And the past no one can change, so what is the use in worrying about it? It was the present that really mattered. How he lived now would shape his past and determine his future. Leena understood that. It brought him a sort of peace to think in those terms. Whatever the future brought, he would face it then, but live his life now.
“You’re right Leena…I shouldn’t worry so much.”
He smiled as the sun dipped into the vast ocean and wished all days could end so.
The night was falling on his village by the time Serge made his way home. A cool sea breeze blew in from the ocean. The first stars were now beginning to show. It was nights such as these that made life worth living. The calm of darkness descended on the village like a solemn veil, a soft light still lingering in the west as the last rays of the sun vanished from sight. He wished Leena a good night as they parted company and she made her way home. Alone now with the darkness, Serge breathed deeply of the night air, relishing the twilight. Moving at a calm pace he crossed the small courtyard that lay at the center of the village. Around this round space were set the buildings of the village, a dozen or so houses built in the traditional style of the El Nido islands: tall, raised on stilts a couple of meters off the ground. They were made out of native palm wood and roofed with palm leaves that provided protection from the hot sun and hard rains. His mother stood at the door of his house and greeted him merrily as he walked up the rickety wooden stairs to the main floor of his house. He smiled at her, but could not fully conceal his mind, as it had become bothered with worry again. His mother frowned, sensing something wrong. “What is it Serge?” she asked, in a tone typical of a concerned mother, “You look worried...is something bothering you?” Serge did not like talking too much, and did not particularly want to mention his dreams to anyone other than Leena - she was the only one who knew. “I’m fine. Just had a long day fishing,” he stated. His mother sighed, yielding, but obviously unconvinced. The two strode indoors, leaving the door open to let in the fresh night air, as everyone in Arni did. In the village, everyone knew and trusted everyone else. Doors and locks were not really necessary, except perhaps to keep out wild animals, but they seldom entered the village. As for thieves, there was not much of great value in such a small fishing hamlet, though many had been worried a few months back about the thieves that had called themselves the ‘Radical Dreamers’. But they had never been seen in El Nido, only on the mainland, and had not been heard of in many months. However, on this night, unseen by all eyes, a dark figure strode boldly in the front gate of the village and silently melted into the shadows surrounding the buildings. The darkness veiled the figure like a cloak as it glanced around cautiously, searching the village for something. Finally fixing its gaze on Serge’s house it turned and disappeared completely into the night. Serge walked into his room, exhaustion finally sweeping over him. It had been a long day at sea, and the fishing had indeed been good. Yet, in a way, he did not want to go to sleep. His mind was troubled, and had grown ever more so as the weeks had passed, despite Leena’s enthusiastic encouragement to forget about it. The elusive dreams that haunted his sleeping mind, as a ghost felt yet unseen, gnawed at his thoughts. Indeed, as he had told Leena many times, he could never remember what they were about. But this had eventually begun to unnerve him. Only vague images flitted into his mind from time to time. The dreams themselves never failed to evaporate from memory the moment he awoke, as if something was trying to keep them from him. A strange, and utterly ridiculous thought. He sat down on his bed, removing his sea worn boots. It was odd, but he was sure the dreams were something more, something important. A warning? No, but something else... Serge spun, nearly falling off his bed. He had heard a noise at his window. A dull thud. He waited a moment that seemed to last forever, his senses heightened by momentary fear. The dark palm leaves swayed in the wind outside his window. Nothing happened. He shook his head. It was late, and now his mind was playing tricks on him. Probably just a stray tree branch, or... “Chrono Trigger!” This time Serge did indeed fall off his bed, landing hard on the wooden floor. A voice had come from the darkness outside. That in and of itself would have been enough to frighten him. But the words caused his mind to spin. They echoed in his head, sending images flashing through his mind. But before he could place any meaning on them, they melted away. His momentary confusion was then replaced by fear. Now he was sure something had addressed him. Summoning his courage, he stepped to the window sill and leaned out, staring out into the darkness. However nothing but shadows met his gaze. Perhaps it was just in his mind. Perhaps he had been dwelling too much on his dreams. He shrugged, unsure as to what to think, and more than a little unsettled. He turned from the window and walked to his mirror. Undoing his red bandana, he tossed it onto the dresser, letting his deep blue hair fall down over his eyes. Serge ran his hand through his hair and sighed. He silently wished, prayed, every night that these elusive dreams would leave him alone, so that he could wake up without questions about what he knew not. What had he done to be cursed with this torment? Nothing, he knew that full well. But such was the way with things. He turned from the mirror, hoping that this night would be better than the last. But before he could take but one step forward he froze, too startled to move. A dark figure stood crouched on the sill of his window. A cloak concealed his entire body, and a hood shrouded his face in darkness. He did not say a word, but simply stood there, as if waiting for Serge to do or say something. For an eternity they both stood motionless. Serge did not move, not knowing what to make of this dark intruder. Likewise the figure stood frozen, and Serge got the impression that he too was being contemplated from beneath the shadowy hood. But as the seconds passed, and nothing happened, his fear transformed into curiosity. He took a small step forward, unsure as how to proceed. He wanted to run, but some part of him desired to know who, perhaps what, this visitor was. His mind still screaming at him to run, he broke the dead silence that lay between them. “Who...who are you? And...” But the stranger had raised a hand, and, without question, Serge stopped mid sentence. The cloaked phantom stood up in the window sill and jumped lightly into the room, making hardly a sound as its feet hit the floor. Now in the light of the room, Serge could see it better. Whatever it was, it wasn’t exceptionally tall, no more than his own height at least. It was dressed in a dark blue cloak that shimmered slightly in the candlelight of the room. But Serge’s heart chilled when he saw what could be nothing other than a sword hanging at the figure’s side. Once again, it stood motionless. But now it spoke, with a calm voice, yet deep and sure. “Yes, I know who you are, Serge. Actually, I know you better than you know yourself...Chrono Trigger!” Once again Serge had been addressed as such. And, as before, a strange sort of recognition flashed through his mind, only to fade into oblivion. The figure shook its head. “I see that you don’t remember.” The figure spoke gently, almost friendly, though with disappointment showing in the voice. What didn’t he remember? “Have I...do I know you?” Serge questioned, hoping for some answers. To Serge’s discomfort, the figure laughed. A strange laugh, as if slightly amused by the question. “No, we’ve never met. But I know a lot about you, and what you did.” Serge frowned, confused. What had he ever done to merit attention? Surely this stranger wasn’t interested in his fish. “You don’t understand,” the figure acknowledged, “Don’t worry, it might come back to you...in time. Maybe it already has, and you just can’t understand it...” Serge’s mind spun. Could this mysterious visitor possibly be referring to his dreams? No, that was impossible. He tried to banish the thought, but the figure seemed to know what he was thinking. “You’re having dreams, right Serge? And you can’t remember them?” Serge didn’t answer, but the stranger seemed to read the truth in his eyes. “I was right then. It is coming back to you. Yes, the unknown is always frightening.” And confusing, thought Serge. What was this phantom be talking about? The cryptic hints were beginning to bother Serge. But the figure continued, either not noticing or not caring about Serge’s uneasiness. “For now all I will say is that those dreams hold the key to a past that you have forgotten.” More cryptic hints. “My past? But...I really don’t understand,” Serge replied, more confused now than ever. Once again, the figure laughed. “Of course not. But, right now, you must be wondering who I am...” The figure lifted his hands and threw back his hood. For a second Serge was prepared for the worst. But his fears were not realized. The figure was indeed human. Serge guessed he was in his mid-thirties or so. His features were sharp, and his eyes were keen. From his head fell long bright red hair, wrapped around by a flowing white headband. There seemed to be an air of adventure and valour about him. If nothing else his face showed one who had seen much of the world, but had not nearly tired of life. He smiled kindly at Serge, as if he had long awaited this meeting. “So, we meet at long last. Long have the threads of our fate intertwined, our stories one, and yet have never met. This probably won’t mean much to you now, but I’m Crono, the first Chrono Trigger. He was right, thought Serge, it didn’t mean anything to him, except for those two words: Chrono Trigger. “Chrono Trigger?” Questioned Serge, yearning to know the reason as to why that word seemed to mean so much. “We have both affected the history of this world, challenged fate, and persevered. But that is a tale for a different time, and I know only one person who can tell it to you as you should hear it.” This didn’t answer his question, much to Serge’s annoyance. But the man continued undaunted. “But that’s not why I’ve come. Actually, I’ve come to you for help...” “Me? Why?...how could I help you?” Serge demanded, his impatience growing. But the man shook his head. “I think this is enough for our first meeting. But mark this, it won’t be our last. I’ll find you again...farewell till then, Serge...” Serge was about to protest, but the man darted for the window. Serge followed after, half of him relieved that the man was leaving, half of him wanting him to stay. But the man was too quick. In one swift movement he slipped out the window and blended into the darkness before Serge’s eyes. From the darkness, a few last words reached him. “...and remember the Chrono Cross!” The Chrono Cross? Images flooded Serge’s mind, almost as of a long forgotten past, or a dream. A light. A young woman...but they too faded, leaving Serge grasping once again only at questions. His mind was confused, but his heart knew something. Something was about to happen, and when it did, his questions would be answered. It took him long to get to sleep that night.
So, there is chapter 1. What do you think? Oh, and how is the formatting? Is it a little hard to read? It seems the indents didn’t copy and paste all too well.