I write this for a quick change of pace. Just to clarify something, this is a 'sequel' to Bonds of the Blood which will not be continued directly.

Kratos could do nothing but watch, frozen with—could it have truly been?—fear. Anna regained control of herself; form and all, and spoke in a strained voice. "Kra...tos... Please! Kill me...now! I don't... want to go on living... like this. An... and Lloyd. Please... save him from... me... Promise me you'll raise Lloyd... Promise me! Live... for me..."

"Anna! No! I won't kill you! I'll find a way! Just... hang on!"

Her body began to tremor uncontrollably, "Kratos... Pl...ease... do it for... our son... " her last words twisted into an unearthly scream as the monster consumed her appearance once again. She then turned to the defenseless protozoan.

He had no choice. He raised the Flamberg above his head, and then lowered it equal with his face. "Anna... I love you. Please... watch over us all." With shaking hands, he sliced her once, then twice. She subsided into the dirt, the wind whispered her thanks.

Subdued by emotion, he knelt using his sword as his only support. He had done it. He had killed her. Right in front of his son's own eyes. He slowly rose and meekly stumbled over to where Lloyd buried his face in Noishe's fur. Kratos knelt and reached out for him, "Lloyd. I.—"

Lloyd screamed and pushed his father's hand away quite roughly, "NO!" he yelled. "I don' wanna die! Where's Daddy! Where's Mommy! Don' touch me!"

For the first time in four millennia, tears welled up in the Seraphim's eyes. He tenderly grasped his son and embraced him. At first, Lloyd screamed in protest, but he looked up into his father's eyes and saw the soft hazel he had learned to seek shelter in. Quivering, he sobbed into his father's chest, releasing all his emotion. Little did they know, this battle was far from over.

Thanks to a warning bark from Noishe, Kratos barely managed to dodge a blast of mana from the staggering Kvar, "I'll kill you once and for all!" Kvar roared as he shot another blast right at them, but did not take in account Kratos' evasion.

The Seraphim managed to pry his boy off him and set him behind the critically wounded protozoan. It was the only thing he could do besides risking Lloyd dying in his arms, something he truly would not, could not, live with.

Blinded by rage, Kvar shot a multitude of blasts, missing Kratos entirely.

But who said Kratos was his target after all? The Seraphim was powerless to stop the blast aiming directly at his son and life long friend, and could only stand frozen and watch.

Just as the flaming sphere of mana burnt a single strand of fur off the protozoan's ear, the Cruxis Crystal threw itself from Kvar's bloodied hands and an otherworldly being dove in front of the blast, unseen to the two men. Nevertheless, Noishe and Lloyd were sent tumbling down the cliff to their death.

Seizing his, possibly only, opportunity to flee, Kvar was engulfed in a clumsy beam of light.

'Anna's exsphere... she still tried to save them... but in vain...

...just as is everything else on this miserable planet...'

It was the same thing over and over again, every time he closed his eyes. He could still hear Lloyd and Anna's voice ring in his head. He had thought surely, he had gone over the edge.

However, he didn't care. The ones he loved were dead and here he was, apart from them. Forever destined to live in eternal damnation.

This however, had been one of his more sane moments. He was safe to approach, for the moment anyway.


The former father knew from where the voice came. Seeing no need to respond verbally, he nodded his head grimly to acknowledge Origin's presence.

"You are, needless to say, going through a deep depression. I understand. Would you be up to a second chance?"

The seraphim blinked mirthlessly. "A second chance? At what? Reliving the deaths of the two I loved deeply?" he spat.

"No, you see I have been preparing for a moment like such. I have the ability to send you back in time, temporarily, to possibly prevent the deaths of Anna and Lloyd."

Upon hearing their names, he internally flinched uncharacteristically. Never the less, he piqued up, his voice raspy from the past arid, waterless days he spent brooding in the Inn at Triet. "Please… I'll do anything."

"Alright. Prepare yourself, tell me when you are ready."

Kratos stood, took a quick swig of the water placed on the end table and grabbed his Flamberg form it's resting place across the unused bed. "I'm ready."

"…Very well."

Upon reopening his eyes, he recognized exactly where he was: the forest just outside what was soon to be Forcystus' Ranch, now under Kvar's reign. Glancing around quickly, he located his direction from the spot on which they were ambushed and set off in a reckless, yet still cautious to a degree, dash.

Little did he know, a half-elfin Desian had spotted the sudden movement and spoke into a small handheld device, "Lord Kvar! Kratos has been spotted just due Southeast! What is your command, sir?"

A sinister voice crackled through the static, "Kekeke, very well then. Send about one hundred troops off to meet him, I will be there shortly…"

"Yes sir!"

Meanwhile, Kratos had stationed himself behind a tree close to the clearing, waiting for his family to come by. As soon as he spotted them he realized Noishe had locked eyes with him, a careless mistake. To repent, he quickly ducked back into the forest. Seconds later, he heard a familiar howl from the protozoan about a half a minute before the ambush had begun.

All too painfully, Anna's voice reached his senses, "Noishe, what's the matter with you?" He then heard his own voice, however much more complete and gentle as to the scratchy, nails-on-chalkboard intonation. "Noishe, what do you sense?"

The memory of this moment had been smoldered into his mind and body; it was unsurprising that he found himself mouthing what he had said next just as it was said: "Anna. It's the Desians, they're after your Cruxis Crystal. It'd be best if you stay with Noishe and Lloyd."

"Mommy? What's going on?" He cringed at the small, unnaturally fearful voice Lloyd had spoken in. With a tight twist of his heart, he realized he no longer held any blissful, aural memories of Lloyd, just the fright and terror instilled the toddlers last words.

Just as he shifted his gaze to the road ahead, the Desians burst forth and attacked him and his family, just as he'd remembered. Kratos had remembered the exact about of Desians he'd killed, how he had taken each life, every detail of the bloodbath, so naturally he watched for how it was Kvar had gone about unnoticed. It was then he realized this was his opportunity to correct his flawed past.

Stealthily as not to be noticed, he crept through the forest until he was behind Anna as best he could while staying concealed. He scanned the area warily, ignoring the impulse given by his burning muscles bent on revenge to hasten his search.

Out of the corner of his eye, Kratos spotted a bright flash of light behind him. He swiveled on his heel to see Kvar, back to him walking prominently towards Anna.

Something foreign inside him caused him to hesitate, a brief prisoner of his own body. During this instant of vacillation, Kvar managed to succeed in tearing the Cruxis Crystal from Anna's living flesh, her scream ringing just as memory portrayed.

He found himself trapped in reminiscence as the memory played before his very eyes. Rage again overtook him; he echoed his chant: "Sacred Powers, cast your purifying light upon this corrupt soul. Burn in hell, sinner! Judgement!" The two spells united to form cataclysmic ruptures plummeting down from the heavens.

Control regained, he sent a rushed beam of healing energies past Noishe and Lloyd to where Anna lay in an attempt to try and prevent her mutation. The beam of light hit her but instead of fading into her flesh, it merely was reflected unto her son and pet.

As she started her horrible mutation, the two continued to glow faintly from the spell, attracting her attention. Almost unknown to the Kratos from the past, she began her rampage onto two of the dearest souls to her.

It was then he realized, no matter what he did, history would remain unchanged. It was meaningless to try and interfere, for no matter what he did, it would be only to the aid of his family's demise.

"Origin," he whispered, voice shaking. "Please… take me back. It is futile for a individual to change what has already befallen."

"Perhaps so. Some things cannot be tampered with, it is clear now that time itself is Absolute… I apologize for using you to figure such a simple fact, however everything has meaning to it, do not forget that. This may have been for the best…

in the 'long run' as you mortals say."

Just as he could feel the threads of time slipping through his fingers, Kratos muttered, "Everything… meaning to it…?