Disclaimer: I don't own Suikoden, all characters, story events, locations and everything else is the property of Konami. This work is a piece of fan fiction and not affiliated with the company itself.

Description: I love the Suikoden series, however I believed Suikoden III was not reflective of the rest of the series. This is my take on what should have happened. Per Suikosource website, I am using the names Tir McDohl for Suikoden I's hero and Riou for Suikoden II's hero.

Suikoden: War of the Runes Prologue: Once Upon a Midnight Story

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Darkness lived within the soul of every being on the planet. He could feel it, the pain and torment of every living man, woman and child who suffered under the constant threat of war within this world. It was a war yet to come, between the consummate powers that sought to possess this world as it's own, Dharma, the extreme order, and Chaos, the nature of havoc, and at the center of the storm were the 27 True Runes. Could any living being truly survive such a war? The young man sitting alone in his contemplative solitude did not believe so. In truth, he believed in the path he was soon to commit to himself, but wondered if he would have the resolve to finish what he would start. Only fate itself would know for sure.

But he denied fate, for if fate were to exist, the ultimate destination of humankind was extinction. He would not, could not allow that fate for mankind, even if he were forced to stand alone against God himself to prevent that horrific final end, he would do so. But his determination now did not mean he would hold to his goal at the end. In truth, he was afraid of what he was about to do, of the evil he would commit for the ultimate good. He would free human from their bondage and destroy God in the process. This would be his gift to history.

History-indeed the notion of past events and past lives were torturous to his own mind, for within the True Wind Rune embedded in his right hand, he saw the memories of the worlds the True Runes had seen, the worlds they had destroyed. It led his to ponder the purpose of the war of the True Runes and the roles Dharma and Chaos played in the battle. How many lives would be claimed, how many souls sent to oblivion? It was a burden of knowledge that pressed heavily on his mind, and tore at his tainted soul. A knowledge that he knew, 26 other people shared, but only he would act against. His only recourse was to declare war on God.

A knock at his chamber door pulled his mind from his own self-destructive musings and back to present. He had work to do before moving on with his final goals.

"Enter," The young man spoke quietly, his voice a shadow of his own tortured being. Most within this structure understood his torment, but not the cause behind it. Much like everything else within this fortress, his existence here was to be used by Leknaat, a tool for her own ends, not his.

Slowly pushing the great wooden chamber door open, a young woman with pale skin and white-blond hair entered. Her blue and silver robe swayed at the hemline with her slightest movement, revealing in its own subtleness the power that she possessed. Everything about her radiated power, and though her quiet nature often caused many to question her mettle, the young man alone in this room knew her power and her strength of will, if no other recognized it. That was why he recruited her in his mad quest, for her power and her will to support him, should he falter.

"Master Luc, it is time. I've seen to it all preparations are complete. The ship to take us to Toran is waiting on the western shore." The young woman said, her voice as soft as his. "I was surprised Lady Leknaat had not intervened, surely she knows that we are leaving."

"I am certain she does." Luc responded, standing and walking the length of his bedchamber to look out the crystalline window and stare one last time at the grounds and gardens below, knowing he would never again lay eyes on the beautiful surroundings of Magician Island. "If she had not by some miracle predicted our actions, Hellion would certainly advise her of our intentions. It matters not; she has made no move against us. We should proceed as planned."

"Understood Master Luc. Albert has already sent notice that he will await us in Kalekka." Sarah said, moving to the door and stopping before leaving Luc alone once again. "I will await your arrival at the ship on the Western shore."

"Yes, I'll only be a moment." Luc responded, his eyes closed as if drawing his inner strength for what was to come. "I just have to see her before I leave. I won't take long."

"As you wish." And with a last flutter of her robe, Sarah was gone.

Luc stood silently for several moments, staring at the room that had been his refuge for the past quarter century. Though the sun had long since risen, reflecting brightly against the crystal spires and marble structure of this fortress, it was as dark as pitch to Luc, for he had no need for the false hope this failed institution of balance Leknaat was so desperate to maintain. The world to Luc was dark; every breath tasted like sulfur on his tongue, every word from his lips bled his heart and soul a little more. He hated the world, and if he had to end it to save it, then he would do so.

Rising from the chair at the desk at which he sat, Luc walked through the open door, not bothering to look back. This was no longer his home, and he would certainly not miss it. Stepping into cavernous hallway, he turned left and walked purposefully toward Leknaat's chamber. He would tell her he was leaving, not because he truly cared for the ancient barer of the True Gate Rune, nor was it to justify his actions to her. It was to throw into her face the failure she made by trying to save him. She was a failure, and he needed her to know that.

Walking to the entrance of the great antechamber that was her study and place of solace, he was slightly surprised as the door opened before he reached it, yet felt he masked his initial shock well.

"Lady Leknaat is waiting for you Luc." Hellion said to him, exiting the room and stepping aside to allow him entry.

"I'm sure she is." He answered the seer coldly. He never liked the woman, not since she came to Magician Island some 18 years ago after the Gate Rune War. It seemed she eyed the younger man with suspicion whenever she looked upon him, and was not at all blinded by the darkness that swam in his soul as Leknaat had been. It was a matter of trust, that and nothing else they could understand and came to a tentative agreement.

Entering the large room and staring straight into Leknaat's unseeing eyes, Luc walked forward and faced her, intent on saying the words he longed to tell her. But it was she who spoke first.

"So, you truly mean to go through with your plan?" She said quietly, hoping she might in some way reach the man she hoped still stood before her, the man buried within the hate of his own curse.

"Yes I do." He answered, surprised at the coldness and the strength of his voice as he addressed his mentor. "What I can't figure out is, if you knew of my plans, why did you not try to stop me before now?"

"Every man must be allowed to walk his own path. I had hoped as you considered your path, that you would see the error of your thinking and realize this is not the way to achieve your goals." Leknaat answered him with equal strength and conviction in her voice. "I see now I may have given you too much credit."

"Or not enough." Luc replied. "You sit here on your precious throne and manipulate everyone around you to do what you believe is best, to maintain your precious balance. You're a True Rune bearer as well. You of all people should be able to see the destruction coming. Do you think your precious balance will stop the war from happening? You're only living in your own delusional fantasy, blinded by your arrogant fa├žade your self- appointed significance. How many people did you send to their deaths in the War of the Gate, or the Dunan Unification War? Were you really relying on the best interest of balance in those wars?"

"Your more a child than I thought Luc." Leknaat answered, her voice even and emotionless as she addressed her pupil. "It took the Soul Eater to defeat my sister Windy, to keep her from obtaining two True Runes. It took the Rune of Beginning, both the Bright Shield and Dark Sword runes to defeat the Beast Rune. Without my intervention, without the 108 stars of destiny, chaos would have swallowed the world. Can you not see that behind your own hate?"

"Your such a hypocrite." Luc countered, his voice rising with the emotion swelling within his heart. "Your idea of balance is only what you deem is necessary. We can agree on one thing however, the ends do justify the means. You believe in balance but supported one army over the other, you believe in preserving life, but are willing to sacrifice many to achieve that. You're right though. I am blinded by my hate. I have hatred for the whole world and you are no exception."

"So you truly wish to go through with this? Even if I stop you?" Leknaat summoned the power of her True Gate Rune, forcing its energy at Luc, only to have him wave it aside with the power of his True Wind Rune.

"You can't, not with your imperfect rune. The other half is still unaccounted for, and likely your sister Windy still has it. After all, her body was never found after the collapse of Gregminister."

Leknaat suddenly became frightfully still, partly due to her failure to subdue her student, and partly at the remark of her missing sister Windy. "You know where she is, don't you?"

"It's unimportant if I do, I'm leaving." Luc snapped his remark like a whip. "I don't expect to see you again." And turning on his heal, he walked toward the exit, stopping only briefly when Leknaat called out to him.

"Luc, I beg of you to reconsider. Do not force my hand in this matter."

"Since when have you ever begged an inferior subordinate Lady Leknaat?" Luc sneered before walking from the room. After a moment, Hellion had entered the chamber, staring over her shoulder in the direction from which Luc had disappeared and addressed Leknaat.

"Should we stop him?" Hellion asked, curiously staring at the eternally young woman before her.

"No, Luc is lost to us. But I'm afraid we will have to act or all may be lost."

"I am curious why you never told Luc you gave me the other half of the Gate Rune when it finally came to you after Gregminister had fallen. If you had both halves, you would have prevented him from leaving."

"It's true I received the second half of the Gate Rune, but its also true Windy is still missing within the world. Her body was never recovered. I think she may have something to do with this, with Luc's sudden departure, I can only pray I'm wrong."

"If so," Hellion began. "She's masking her presence from me. I can't tell if she's pulling the strings or not."

"It's not so much seeing her, I can feel her out there. I knew she survived the collapse of Gregminister, but I don't know where she's gone. Regardless, events are moving too quickly and we have no time to ponder the 'what ifs'. Hellion, I would ask you to begin summoning them. We will need them to battle this."

A smile crossed Hellion's face that Leknaat could not see, but heard it in her friend's voice. "I've already begun. The first ones should arrive in a couple of days."

"Good. I only hope we don't force the war Luc has foreseen. We should act cautiously, but we must act."

"Indeed my dear friend Leknaat, that is all we can hope to do."

-To be continued

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Author's note: Yeah, I strayed from the story, especially the conversation between Luc and Leknaat but I think the story needed more depth and development. As I said, this is my take on what should have happened in Suikoden III. Please R&R. I welcome anything you guys have to say, ideas or thoughts. Danke