As any can no doubt tell, this is a fan fiction based mostly upon the two games of the Chrono series (likely from the fact that it is placed within the category entitled "Chrono Cross.") But the obvious aside, I think I shall say a word or two regarding it in this prologue (though most, I deem, will skip right past this and to the story; few there are that care overmuch for forewords.)
The story itself is somewhat difficult to introduce. I should hope it needs no formal introduction, and that the following prologue and succeeding chapters suffice. But I shall make an attempt, at any rate, and speak of in what manner I write it, before the story proper begins. If this appears as an attempt to have people read the story, it is indeed so; this fan fiction site in particular is rife with any number of stories, and I do not wish this to be lost amidst it all. Now, concerning the story. For the first, I have not treated this as a work of fan fiction, but rather as a tale in its own right. In other words, I make no assumption that those reading it know aught of the story that precedes it, either of Chrono Trigger or of Chrono Cross, and begin all anew, from the describing of characters to the explanation of what came before (and to this much of the first few chapters, most especially the fourth, is devoted.) The story itself is intended as coming in the months following the conclusion of the second game, and so is set, roughly, in September of the year 1020. Furthermore this tale is not in anywise lighthearted, and is quite grim at times (though never, I must stress, dark in the depressing sense.) It is, I hope, in some small measure an emulation of the grimness that must be during a war. For this is largely a war-tale, telling of the rising of Guardia and its heroic king against the armies of Porre that oppress it, and the many things that come of that effort. In that vein I strive for all seriousness in its telling. For that matter, I am most serious in the process of writing as well, and have edited this all to quite an extent (though, being my own editor, it is invariable that errors will always remain in the grammar and spelling, despite my sincerest efforts to eliminate them.) I think there is far more I could say, but I deem that any reading so far have tired of this. If the story cannot speak for itself, it is not worth telling, so I will let it do so.
But one more thing, first: for those who might have read some earlier drafts of this story, of chapters one to seven or so as they existed on this site prior to mid-August 2004 or so, I apologize (anything of a later draft I will mark with the date of its editing; at this writing it is merely this prologue that is of the newer group, but the chapters one to seven will follow soon enough.) Those earlier drafts were written and edited quite some time ago (a good year, at the least), and I think my writing has, at least in some measure, matured in that space of time. That said this current version, most especially in the earliest chapters, contains writing more in line with the later segments (though, unfortunately, it is still lacking aside what I wrote later.) But be that as it may, if there are any that glance over these chapters, having read them before, there will most certainly be changes evident. Not in content, for the most part (save for a cut segment or two), but in the style. I looked back upon much of chapter one, especially, with loathing. The descriptions and style of wording seemed, to me, so childish that I at needs changed many of them. They are still not as good as they might be (for surely my style now, as it is in this very foreword, is somewhat removed from that of the first few chapters), but I think they will suffice. I do not think that I (or, rather, hope that I will not) will feel compelled to ever return and do extensive editing to this tale again.
Finally, in regards to legal matters such as they are, I think it to be common knowledge that most of the background story contained within this tale, that which it is based upon, is from the two games which belong in whole to Squaresoft or, as it is called nowadays, Square-Enix. Though coloured through the author's interpretation and the like, it will remain irrevocably so, and so I bow to their rights regarding it in these matters. What is of my own, however, is the language that I put forth as being of Zeal; it is certainly not so in truth and is of my own invention for a separate tale of my own making that I am embarking upon, and so hold it to be mine and if needs be separate from this tale for most purposes. I merely thought it an apt thing to do: to transfer it from one to the other, for it has been a most difficult work in charting this language out so far, and I thought it might work in this case to lend something of depth to the story. That said, there are also fragments of dialogue and such that I have written for this story that I have liked and simply transferred over to my other original story. So saying I wish to hold those fragments as my own (for they do not include anything otherwise copyrighted.) That, I think, is about all. If I have forgotten anything, I trust it is implied. There are more than enough legal disclaimers on the other fan stories, and this simply follows suit in that regard.
If any have read this far in this foreword, I marvel, and now bow out of introduction to give way to the story itself.
Foreword written August 12, 2004
THE FALLING OF EMPIRES
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 valour done in those years as Guardia fought 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 south, 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 had 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...
(Last edited August 12, 2004)