“What do you need a guardian for?”
“This realm is full of monsters and demons, demons that will target a summoner specifically due to the command he has over them.”
“…No, it isn’t…”
-Naoko and Estelle
Kalil and Naoko traveled deeper into Kouhei Castle in search of Lady Sari, in an attempt to rescue her from the Brood of the Dark Lord and bring the cult to an end. Kalil cut through the magical seal with Ascalon equipped with the Decay materia, and they proceeded forward until they reached two of the remaining cultists — a young summoner named Sullivan, and his guardian, Estelle. Estelle was clearly the smarter of the two, but Kalil’s unfailing politeness and Naoko’s notable lack of patience led them to leave quickly in order to announce the Queen of Paradise’s calling upon Lady Sari.
Kalil and Naoko waited in the throne room, but they were not alone.
“So few, so few… So few an audience… …for the Many-As-One.”
-Lady Somnus/Nephesh, Naoko, and Kalil
Lady Somnus uncoiled from the ground upon hearing Naoko’s voice, demanding to know where the rest of her number were, behaving in an odd, disjointed manner. It wasn’t until Naoko confirmed that it was just she and Kalil, and they had not come to fight, that the reason for Somnus’s behavior became clear.
Lady Somnus picked up a hitchhiker when she left Unterstadt; Nephesh’s metallic individual souls. Over time, more of Nephesh gathered on Somnus, using her as a carrier to be free of the forces of EDEN under Striestadt; at least, until Somnus was shot and killed by Kogel shortly thereafter during the Doomtrain attack on Ad Astra. Desperate for safety, Nephesh used Somnus’s body as a host, keeping her outwardly alive in order to remain safe from prying eyes. The continued destruction of the Brood of the Dark Lord, coupled with Somnus’s injuries from being shot in the eye with a sniper rifle, led many to believe her erratic behavior was due to some kind of brain damage.
Nephesh wished for home, somewhere safe, somewhere he could be free and far away from any enemies. Kalil promised to help Nephesh, figuring that Darien could probably come up with something, especially with Nephesh being made up primarily of Striestadtians who were unable to return to the Lifestream upon their deaths at the hands of Huxley and his operations. Naoko spent most of the conversation attempting to crawl out of her own skin.
They heard Argus make his appearance, but trusted Kogel to take care of it when his voice cut in.
The door behind the throne opened.
You’ve seen her over and over again in the visions of the Old World, the war between Kouhei and Tetsu, as told by the otherworldly performances at Horizon.
You’ve seen her in passing, fleeting glances of a robed woman in the background with Hades.
Kalil saw her, desperately, from the back of his motorcycle, pleading with her to return to Victor and leave Hades behind.
But this is the first time you’ve really seen her — the sad green eyes, the dark hair pulled tight back from her face, the light scar on her left cheek, the thicker scar bisecting her right eyebrow.
The Sorceress, Sari.
Sari’s first words to Naoko and Kalil were that they shouldn’t be here — that this was only to be the Brood of the Dark Lord. She took over the Brood of the Dark Lord to bring an end to them. Lord Hades continued in the style of Lord Acheron from her time, far before theirs, and that any others who came would be like him. If the next leader had the intelligence and vision that Hades lacked, in favor of his own charisma and presence. The last thousand years of Sari’s life, watching every rise and fall of the underside of the world that worshipped the Destroyer, led her to believe that bringing the final elements of the cult together, and ending them, would be the only solution.
Sari ordered them to leave, stopping only to rescue Anise, The Girl, who went by AJ, who deserved no part of this. She reacted harshly when Kalil mentioned Victor in an attempt to appeal to the Sorceress from the Horizon performances. She told them to leave, that there was nothing in her actions that warranted heroes like them.
“They named me after you.”
Naoko’s simple words shook Sari, and the revelation that the former Avatar of Angra Mainyu, Yuna, was now the Aeon of Time and put the entire power of the Destroyer to rest, shook her even further. Sari’s stated goal, to be a weapon of the Destroyer for she felt that she warranted nothing further after the last thousand years, fell on deaf ears and a quiet fury from Naoko. Naoko and Kalil both had the idea to get Sari in contact with Yuna, and Kalil used the Paradise Phone to call Cloud and get that process started. Sari struggled to reconcile her knowledge of the Aeon of Time with the fact that Yuna was now the Aeon of Time.
“Is that Tifa on the phone? Why are we calling Tifa? Since when does a phone work here? Who else HAS a phone here?” Why does Yuna have Tifa’s phone?
Kogel arrived as the ground began to shake, The Girl in tow, and stood around confused as absolutely no one bothered to bring him up to speed on what was happening. Cloud and Tifa reached Yuna, and for a few moments, the Aeon of Time and the First Summoner had a phone conversation.
“Hello, Sari. I think we’ve met before, but I wasn’t as much myself then I was now. I was… a little bit more, I think, then. Angra Mainyu may have been many things, but more than anything else in the world, Angra Mainyu sought to preserve, not destroy. They called us the Destroyer because of what we did to the world, but the reasons behind our actions were… different, than what was said. We sought to protect this world, and all of the others, from a much bigger threat called EDEN, one that created worlds only to destroy them when it didn’t approve of the outcome.
We, Angra Mainyu, took what remained of these worlds and kept them safe, bottled up and hidden away, frozen in time, so they wouldn’t really die. But we were wrong to do that. We took too many worlds, and we couldn’t just protect worlds by locking them away like that. We weren’t saving anyone, we were just imprisoning them. We decided — after meeting Kalil and the others — to instead let the worlds fight for themselves, and end that age of imprisonment. Angra Mainyu freed the worlds then, restoring Paradise to what you knew it as, and went away then. It’s not us anymore. It’s just me."
-Yuna, to Sari
The ground shook again as Sari realized the gravity of her mistakes. Sari told AJ to leave with the others, as she needed to put a stop to something that she started long before — Omega Weapon.
“Hades gave it his own name. Dajjal.”
This session had the most screaming-at-the-GM since the introduction of Naoko’s siblings in the false world.
Naoko and Kalil both earned two LP for this session.
Naoko earned a bonus LP for “They named me after you.”
Kalil earned a bonus LP for having a Special Aeon Phone.
Kogel earned one LP for his appearance at the end of this session.