It's almost been two years, hasn't it? Almost two years ago I promised I would explain everything.
But I still haven't.
What kind of writer am I? Why did I end a story with so much potential?
Well, looking back on it now, I know there were lots of holes. There were many themes, many scenes, many openings for drama and vibrant life. But they all still had so many holes.

There was something about Soren back then. He captured my attention more than anyone else in the world, more than anything in any book I'd read. And there still is. I cannot see it so well anymore because we have weakened our connections, and because I am distracted by the life I have to live out in this world. But when I focus my eyes I can see it. That peculiar presence, the emotions and feelings his very appearance can stir, the sad calmness and tired intelligence that always depressed me yet helped me feel safe.

Oh, but I'm delving into a personal life. Perhaps even two. No, that is enough. On with what happened with the story, hm?

Let's see...

Unto Tellius, a Curse was like a prophecy to Radiant Dawn, to tell the truth. It's just that some messages were not transferred. Merciful goddess, I'd hardly gotten through eight chapters, what message could there possibly be? I can only remember one thing. Judgement.

Everything in the story was meant to lead up to a form of judgement. In this story, there is a dark god but no Yune. In this story, Ashera is whole and a benevolent goddess. Now as we know this is not the case, but this story was before Radiant Dawn. Untamed chaos would flood Tellius and a messenger of judgement had to be dispatched. In this concept, I was misled -- I believed Ashera to be an entity of balance, not pure order, as it was suggested in Path of Radiance so long ago.
As you should have noticed, Soren plays an extremely important role in this story. Or at least, played an extremely important role in what was once a story. But what role could that be?

Ashera is despairing from the heavens. Her sorrow and anger pool into a shadow, a manifestation of a goddess's pain. The discontent amongst the beorc and laguz were what brought about such distraught deity, and although the Mad King's War was history the conflict between beorc and laguz had not been resolved. The shadow, the creature which formed from Ashera's pain was the spider-like revenant stalking the woods. Soren was not her only target. He just happened to be there. And perhaps she could sense these sentient beings she sought to sentence (alliteration unintended), so it's a possibility something about his presence drew her close.
Any time this creature attacks a person, the victim is changed. The slightest wound triggers a transformation.
This warps the victim's sense of identity. Beorc attacked by the revenant take on laguz features, but their differences can vary from obvious to subtle from the laguz. Laguz wounded by her are twisted into ravenous monstrosities -- they retain their former selves in a sound state. The children of beorc and laguz would take on laguz features, just like victimized beorc. Therein lies the problem.
The very first version of the story in my mind had this in mind: After the attack, Soren would develop wings. They were feathery wings, black and dipped in white. What sort of laguz has those kinds of wings? Well, the crows certainly found it curious. Everyone else did too. These wings posed a serious hindrance to Soren, who was clumsy with them and could hardly keep his balance, let alone use them to fly. The development of these wings would, however, mark his role as a messenger of Judgement.
Now then, much much later. Still before the release of Radiant Dawn, we were starting to conclude Soren carried the blood of black dragons. The signs were so blatantly obvious. I began to mull over my concepts. Why would he develop feathery wings? Would it not be more likely those wings would be of bone and membrane? But I was so attached to my vulture Soren. That was simply the sort of laguz I viewed his wings to belong to. A vulture -- misunderstood and with imperative roles in life. This may seem irrelevant, but it's a fun fact: the Egyptian hieroglyph for "mother" or "empress" was a vulture, because they were caring with their children.
So in later versions of the story in my head, I decided to do something else. At first the wings looked feathery, looked to be the wings of a bird. But at some point in the story an angry mob of beorc stuck him to a massive wooden stake and lit a bonfire. You know how crucifixation goes, right? Well... Yeah, they were trying to burn him.
The feathers would burn and peel away, revealing the true wings underneath. The flames would then burn through the membrane before Soren was rescued by comrades

Ugh, I have a long way to go... Let's see if I can keep this not confusing...

----------

March 11, 2009

Hello, everyone. I started writing this summary chapter a few years back but hardly made any advances. However, I have been receiving slow but steady reviews from a fanfiction I thought long dead. I have surmised it is the age to finish this incomplete story once and for all, whether by summary or by narrative.

Please do tell me how you have all been finding a story that's been buried beneath countless others.

I will modify what I have thus far and add some research information as well as story information.

----------

April 04, 2009

So much has been going on in my life. By that, I mean things that drive me into purpose. I'll try to keep working on this, but it will be a slow and steady thing.

Research

I would play Path of Radiance and along the way jot notes down. I would jot down quotes ("If you treat others in good faith, they will follow you of their own volition" ~Greil), names of enemies and locations (Kayachey, led the Daein occupation in Tor Garen), and miscellaneous content (herons can read the minds of others, especially in orderly conditions). Why, I still have the old paper here...

(11MAR09: .// Existing galdrar include Vigor, Bliss, Recovery, Valor, Rebirth, Awakening, and the unseen Dirge of Ruin that is mentioned by Reyson in Path of Radiance.)

Storyline

All right, this ought to be a bit complicated and jumbled up... Let's start with...what we do have, and what I had outlined.

-Prologue-
You know it, everyone's together having themselves a happy ol' time, Soren's up in his room writing in his journal. A lot of foreshadowing happens here right away. And then Boyd runs into Soren and Soren tackles Boyd down the stairs and tries to strangle him.

-Chapter One-
The day following the Prologue. I think what I did with Lethe's description was unnecessary, not even I could stay awake during that. A little more foreshadowing and a peek at everyday mercenary life, except with the guests to accompany the mercenaries. And I probably didn't get the "everyday mercenary life" tidbit correct either, but one makes mistakes. Oh yeah, and I don't know what sort of sauce Mist used either. Use your imagination. I had a bit of fun with the battle scene... Paltry amount of wyvern riders attacks the mercenaries, Zelia's mercenaries engage with the Greil company but Zelia and her troops pull out... What happened at the end? Today I'm not so certain. Perhaps it was my own imagination going wild, or perhaps Soren's anger really had gotten the better of him.

-Chapter Two-

A cemetary for a home. Cheerful, I know. I don't know what happened with Makalov and Marcia, but reading it now makes me chuckle. Eww... Did I really write "obscure crimson eyes"? Forgive me for being picky, but I've known for a long time Soren's eyes are a tranquil if not slightly troubled burgundy. So everyone's saying goodbye to Zelia's mercenaries, Soren's lying in the couch to recover from battle, Rhys is patching him up and then Oscar has a conversation with him... Lethe chases Ranulf around... I believe this is around dinnertime. Ah, yes, the mercenaries are heading outside to bury the bodies of their former enemies and Ike kicks Boyd in the shin for fooling around...
I thought this was in the next chapter! Shinon quarrels with Soren. I had too much fun with this fight, I think it was illegal. Shinon was particularly bitter. I was not intending on making him look bad, but he and Soren were never really on good terms. And again, the fight was illegally fun to write. Those italics after Shinon leaves the room is a direct quote from Path of Radiance, Soren versus Shinon in the Tor Garen fort. Mordecai finally comes in and notices the upturned couch and whatnot...
Everyone files back in, they have dinner, and some of the guests take their leave while it's still dark. Kind of crazy now that I think about it. Titania talks to Soren, then goes to chew Shinon out. Everyone retires to bed.

-Chapter Three-
Queen Elincia Ridell Crimea calls for the arms of the mercenaries, but a few stay home to look after their wounded staff officer. The spotlight goes to Ike, Mia, Rhys, Gatrie, Shinon, and Titania. They are riding with the Royal Guard (a complete fluke, turns out that's what they're called in Radiant Dawn as well) toward the Melior. (This was a look back into Daein. What is Daein up to? Well, there's trouble brewing over there, because no one is actually leading Daein any more. At this point in time a group of stuffy, avaricious men alongside wise, ambitious men thought to declare themselves the rightful leaders of Daein's shattered kingdom.) The mercenaries arrive in the capital and head away to meet the queen. Simple things happen, they have a rendezvous, and around here things get a little strange with Ike, Elincia, and Geoffrey. I swear I don't remember a thing of what I was poking at. These days I believe Ike is not and never will be interested in a deep relationship, and that Elincia would be happier with Geoffrey.
At any rate, the mercenaries are there to bolster the guard. Some idiot group of rogue Daeins decided to attack the castle. Well, you never know, perhaps there was a greater number but some calamity befell them and reduced their numbers to desperate bits. Of course, I'm just whipping this up as I type. Some writer I am. Right?
But enough of my self-esteem! Battle scenes appear to be my strong point. A lot is happening, so it may appear difficult to keep up with. Why, I had even forgotten that Mia was supposed to be there. I made up for it with Mia fighting off some mind-warped hawks within the walls. Those poor laguz, but that's how the world spins.
After defending the Melior from the Daein invaders (Soren calls it the Melior), the mercenaries pull back to rest up. Then they go home and find Soren waiting for them.

-Chapter Four-
Prior to Fire Emblem, I used to read a webcomic. Ever heard of 8-Bit Theatre (written by Brian Clevinger)? One of the characters, Black Mage, was a maniac suppressed by idiots who liked to stab people with a knife. Now, I don't know where my fascinations with knives and swords began. I believe it traces back to...Zelda...?
Anyway, I liked the thought of Soren having some skill with a knife. (That doesn't mean I always gave him knives in Path of Radiance. Terrible use!) So here he is, training with Titania. A mage has to grow after all, no?
I could spend all day picking at mistakes in my grammar.
I just view Boyd as a klutz. A lovable one, but a klutz nevertheless. He and Ike seemed to be particularly close friends in the beginning of Path of Radiance. Boyd also had ties to Titania. I'd forgotten about him around this point in time, but Boyd really isn't such a bad character.
I'd always thought Shinon liked Titania a bit. I don't remember why... For all we know, they could actually be related. ...Nah.
Uhh... I honestly don't know where the spoon came from.
Ah...now I remember. The unpleasant part of dinner. The wrong topic to have a conversation about. I can't believe I forgot about this... It seems so crucial, but I don't remember specifically why... Being a mixture of beorc and laguz heritage is always important though. (Have you ever considered...that beorc would refer to them as part-laguz, and laguz would refer to them as part-beorc? I was saying part-laguz for a small while before catching myself... What ignorance I've displayed.)
I seem to love using...physical humor. Things like Soren opening the door Ike was leaning against and letting Ike fall down. This stuff is probably very common.
Ah, is that the end of the chapter already? ...I find the mercenaries to be very loyal to Ike, but since Shinon doesn't like him... Self-explanatory.

-Chapter Five-
Sorrowful Galdr. Path of Radiance mentioned only a few galdrar. Vigor, rebirth, and release. I believed that more galdrar existed before Radiant Dawn came out. Sorrowful Galdr is a peek into the goddess's pain -- but you see it only through Soren's encounter with the manifestation of Ashera's despair.
The title refers more, however, to the suffering the laguz underwent and will undergo. Funny how all the laguz nobles decided to pay the mercenaries a visit, but they did all meet Ike and company in person.

(April 04, 2009)

It's kind of strange reading this now. It's as though I was not the one who wrote it. I like how I tried to keep all the mercenaries in character, though.

Ike reports to their visitors of the resurfacing Feral Ones. This is naturally a blow to the laguz, who have so long endured the cold, heartless bite of beorc chains, then generations later were forcefed toxins and elixirs under the beorc researcher Izuka's plans.

It also appears I gave Soren unusual gestures and characteristics... Cute ones that are sometimes a little scary in more ways than one.

Half of the mercenaries left the fort to scout the forest, the other half to protect their visitors present at that point: Reyson and Leanne. When all were together again, Tibarn had joined their number.

"Reason. Something the Begnions lack." Ha, I like that quote. I came up with that? How I yearn for such old wit...

It appears the story was going in a direction with Begnion developing warships. Almost historical fiction with how technology is being developed in this story. But I don't remember where I was going with these warships. It does contribute to war, since Begnion could savage whatever shores they explored... War and the chaos meant to bring out the dark god.

Begnion warships have been ravaging Phoenicis for four weeks...

(May 25, 2009)

I've been busy. However, I think I forgot to mention another galdr that Path of Radiance mentions. The Dirge of Ruin.

(June 9, 2009)

Yes, I love political contemplation...

Caineghis, Tibarn, Reyson, Leanne, Naesala... Conversing with Ike and his officers because of their fame throughout Tellius, a status that would get them involved in any conflict...

Well, the main point stands. Begnion has cannons and it'll cause more conflict, more discord. This is a major concern to the bird tribes. It would also embroil Goldoa and eventually Gallia, which occurs to the herons (who guard Lehran's Medallion).

In all honesty, I can't recall what direction I was going in with Begnion... With Daein, I have a vague idea. Daein had become somewhat self-governed, guided by a council of sorts between warriors. But otherwise it's not entirely clear.

Huh, was that all to the chapter? That was a bit boring...

-Chapter Six-

Anger, Sin, Discord. The title itself suggests a sort of rising action. It takes a spark and a little flame-fanning to make a blaze...

Ah, this dream... You can tell Soren plays some sort of significance in the story. I know the dream was supposed to give off a sense of foreboding while indicating that, well, something wicked this way came. The feminine scream was alluding to the true antagonist of the story, the shadow of Ashera's sorrow and wrath.

So Soren's out doing his part of the morning patrol before anyone else is even awake. And all is spooky and shady and amiss in general. Then he gets attacked by this demon spawn that's seductive and reflective in the eyes but hideously decayed below the face. Three pairs of jointed limbs sprouting from the spine.

This thing I made is actually a bit...well, freaky. Moving...right...along... (I apologize, I just don't like temptresses that use emotion to ensnare.)

So he rips away and runs for his life, but this thing's fast as bloody hell, and he has to dodge around all sorts of obstacles...

Ah, and it pins him down, and in his panic he starts receiving memories imbued within the dragon blood that he carries in his beorc veins. There Shinon saves him, and he snaps up and out, running into Ike in a frenzy. And then passing out.

(June 10, 2009)

-Chapter Seven-

What, I never even got to the eighth chapter before I stopped? Stars above.

Goldoa's Rage.

Soren's in recovery. After checking up on him, Titania goes down to the private library, doing a little research on beorc-laguz hybrids. He falls out of his bed, Titania hears and goes back up to help him back into the bed, then discovers he's developing a fever. Rhys is sent to tend to his symptoms. As this is going on, the other mercenaries are coming back from patrol as a rain starts up.

Ike and Soren talk, Soren thinks he's losing it.

Lunchtime, Soren takes a nap so he doesn't eat...

Everyone comes back from lunch, Titania helps Soren back into the couch since he fell out again...

Ah, ah. Boyd's being snappy at Rolf. He's being snappy because now that he knows Soren is part-laguz, he's forming fears of his own.

Shinon and Gatrie are talking... They do seem rather detached from the current company since Greil's gone, they've only got Titania really. Titania comes, has a slight argument with Shinon...

Mia's standing outside in the downpour. Rhys, concerned, tries to convince her to come back inside, but she claims to suspect a great battle approaching.

As though to reinforce her suspicions, Soren goes into freakout mode again. He's been made sensitive to phenomena like this, so he knows there are dragons coming from the south.

They're all suiting up for battle when he goes further into freakout mode and has a flashback. It's not his, it belongs to an ancestor.

So they're all standing, waiting for these flying Goldoans to arrive (flying? impossible! most Goldoans can't fly!), and then there's the cut-off.

...We begin the unwritten story.


The Unwritten Storyline

-Chapter Seven Continued-

What was basically supposed to happen was that the Goldoans attacked the mercenaries' stronghold, forcing the mercenaries to flee to Crimea. The Goldoans are being affected by some new influence that's washed across the land, and these select Goldoans have been touched in some way or other, which drove them to an odd sort of frenzy. Naturally, the influence being exerted over Tellius is the presence of Ashera's shadow.

-Chapter Eight: As Before or as New?-

The mercenaries take refuge in Crimea and report their encounter to the queen. Meanwhile, Soren starts to develop structures on his back. No, they're not jointed arachnid limbs... They've hardly even formed, really. Volke comes along with talk and reports from all around Tellius. They also stumble across Sothe (it's not clear to me how, I'm afraid). They do a little training during their time in Crimea. After a while, Volke takes his leave, and as though to replace him the merchant caravan makes its appearance. Sothe later makes his departure as well. By the end of this chapter, it becomes apparent Soren has grown wings (though they're bare and for some reason resemble bird wings). This new development resulted from his encounter with Ashera's shadow.

-Chapter Nine: Branded Laguz-

Those wings eventually grow feathers (black and dipped in white). His hair changes as well... I can't quite remember how, I guess it takes on white along the edges as well. Curious. He has a training session with Bastian, but proves to be extremely clumsy with the new wings (sudden weight would probably make his back ache for a while). Still, he manages to make Bastian trip with some careful wind manipulation.

-Chapter Ten: Trepidation-

Every ten chapters was meant to be excessively important and detailed, more than likely the longest chapters of the story as well.

Volke returns to report that the mercenaries' stronghold is safe to occupy again. The Greil Mercenaries return to their home, where they sleep and play and train — whatever mercenaries do. Then one day, Kilvas crows appear. Strange. What could their business there be? Why, they want to see the one who grew wings that were unlike any laguz. They seem captivated by the design, but eventually take their leave, not even bothering to pickpocket the mercenaries.

Ena and Rajaion come to apologize in their country's stead (this is when I had not realized Rajaion had died at the end of Path of Radiance, yes it's sad I didn't pick up on that). Followed by...a troop of Daeins? The Daeins come with a warning, but it's a friendly warning for the mercenaries: watch out for Begnion. That's not unusual at all. They stay for a little while.

Then Begnion soldiers attack the keep. The mercenaries and Daeins have to flee, but Crimea seems to have picked up on the situation and also sent a force to help. This doesn't appear to alleviate anything at all, and instead the mercenaries flee south for Goldoa. (Mind you, the more I'm looking over all this, the less sense it makes! This story's so illogical, it's no wonder I stopped writing it...)

In Goldoa, the mercenaries meet up with Prince Kurthnaga, who points out the goddess's anger and explains the destruction occurring throughout Tellius. Phoenicians come along to speak with the dragon king. While Tibarn is mildly surprised to see the mercenaries there, he's got other concerns: Phoenicians have been killed, and he's willing to blame Begnion and Daein.

Ferals strike, I don't remember this at all. Well, no, I fairly remember... Some army of ferals swarms Goldoa, which forces the mercenaries to flee. They take a ship (a ship in Goldoa?) and attempt to sail out to Phoenicis, but the ship's attacked by feral...wyverns. Hm, that's a problem. They're having trouble fending off the wild wyverns. Boyd, hastily believing that Soren with his new wings could already fly, pressures the mage to get up there and blast them out of the sky. Soren refuses, so Boyd pushes him over the edge, thinking that would make him fly.

No, Soren kinda gets dragged down in the water. Oscar dives in in a valiant effort to save the mage.

The wyverns retreat, but Soren and Oscar do not re-emerge.

The mercenaries, although shaken, resume sailing for Phoenicis. Ike defends Boyd despite what he did back in the thick of battle.

Naesala has discovered Soren and taken him into Kilvas...

-Chapter Eleven: The Fire in the Forge-

Naesala strikes a deal... What kind of deal? It doesn't say here, and I don't remember anything about a deal... Probably another contract to rob some merchant ship... Well, the Kilvas crows meet to discuss...something that I don't remember either.

Ike and company arrive on Phoenicis. Ike speaks to Tibarn, who had his own issues to attend to during the recent conflict, and afterward a search is launched to find Oscar and Soren. Curiously, Apostle Sanaki arrives on a ship to discuss something with Tibarn. Probably the state of things and Begnion's random aggressions.

-Chapter Twelve: Merely Life-

The story somewhat reduces to a calmer pace, detailing a more everyday scenario now. The mercenaries take on training with the hawks, Soren takes on flight training in Kilvas (he has hardly any choice, I can scarcely imagine attempting to fly in Kilvas, I'm sure their insults would sting). Some shoreline Begnions discover Oscar washed up on the shore (he must've found driftwood or something) and take him in to help him recover. Must be nice citizens or something. Haar and Jill drop by and meet Oscar by chance (what chance!) and Jill offers to stay with Oscar. They also find he's developing something in the neck...

-Chapter Thirteen: A Pack of Traitors-

Is it any surprise that a mutiny breaks out in Kilvas? A band of ravens turn on Naesala, driving him and his loyal subjects out, but they have to leave behind the mostly flightless Soren. Soren flees and hides deep within the Kilvas castle.

Naesala flies to Tibarn, surprisingly, and in his indignation explains what just happened to him. Seeing that the Greil Mercenaries have settled down in Phoenicis, Naesala also mentions that Soren is back at the castle, certain the mercenaries would help drive off the rebels to help their staff officer. Preparations are made in Phoenicis. Then the mercenaries set off...

...and soon collide with rebels, matching steel for talon.

-Chapter Fourteen: To Be Beorc-

It appears that the mercenaries are the victors, as they reunite with their lost tactician in Kilvas Castle. Basically it's a reunion and some exchange of information, based on what Soren overheard and what the mercenaries picked up while in Phoenicis. To explain the title, it refers to Soren fulfilling his duty as staff officer again, something that makes him feel like beorc like he used to — a civil, intelligent feeling.

-Chapter Fifteen: Wrath Returns-

The mercenaries sail back to Phoenicis and rest up. Jill flies in with Oscar, having received information of their whereabouts. Oscar has some message from Sephiran (I don't know what) and shows them his new gills! He had been attacked by Ashera's shadow or some such while he was in the water.

-Chapter Sixteen: The Third Strike-

Ike is taking a walk in the moonlight to clear his mind. Perhaps he was unlucky, for Ashera's shadow made its appearance and attacked. (Keep in mind they still don't know what this creature is.) Rolf and Mist had followed Ike, arriving just in time to see the attack happen. Ike and Rolf were roughed up, but perhaps the creature had some aversion to Mist, as she was left unscathed.

-Chapter Seventeen: Grieve-

Ike and Rolf are recuperating. While in bed, Ike recalls a time when his father was still alive, and the whole day becomes excruciatingly solemn. Titania discusses with Mist what had occurred. Later, Mia stumbles upon the graves of recently slain Phoenicians and mourning relatives. And no, Mia does not know how to cheer them up.

-Chapter Eighteen: Thundering Rain-

Is a storm about to hit? The wind's become violent and uncontrollable. In the middle of the day, Mist notices that Ike and Rolf are developing growths at their tailbones. Soon after that, Ulki hears the sound of dragons calling. Janaff follows this up by spotting dragons, wyverns, and rogue ravens in the distance. Having hardly any defense, the mercenaries take shelter with any Phoenicians who cannot defend themselves either. The attack eventually passes...

-Chapter Nineteen: Ascend Anew-

Soren seems to have picked up a galdr from somewhere, as he's started humming to himself a very depressing galdr. Tibarn, Ulki, and Janaff leave for Goldoa after what just happened, while Jill discusses her fears (I'm not sure what those might be). In their absence, a troop of pegasus knights from Begnion appear, demanding that the mercenaries surrender. Ike, entirely confused, tries to ask what they're surrendering to, but the pegasus knights just kidnap Soren rather than reply. When Tibarn returns, he declares war on Begnion.

-Chapter Twenty: Churning Blood-

Unable to fight his way out, Soren is given to a bishop and locked up. (Wait, is this part of some slave trade? Mercy above...) Ike attempts to talk Tibarn out of this war, but the hawk king pushes him aside and has his men prepare for battle on Begnion shores. Oscar swims off to...somewhere. Haar flies in, having learned that Jill was staying with the mercenaries, and with Jill attempts to talk the hawks into standing down. The hawks fly past them, forcing the wyvern riders to stay with the mercenaries.

Sanaki negotiates with some bishop while attempting to calm her people. Consumed by anger (over what, perhaps the conflict with Phoenicis or conflict in general), they drive her away, but they all run from the hawks swooping in. The hawks rip the place apart. Crows descend upon what wreckage is left behind, also relocating their lost Soren and taking him back. Oscar, who'd been swimming to Begnion with his developed marine characteristics, notices this and follows the crows back to Kilvas (must be a bother). But he gets stopped when Begnion ships get in the way. The Holy Guard is overhead and he calls to them. After speaking to their leader (Marcia's with them) they fly off to retrieve the Greil Mercenaries.

While the battle continues raging in Begnion, Daein has marched in to intervene. On whose side, I'm not certain. Reyson has found Naesala and they discuss things...

On his trip back to Kilvas, Soren goes into a trance. That usually means bad things.

The Holy Guard has managed to fly the Greil Mercenaries to Begnion, but hawks take notice of the pegasi and flatout attack. Shinon, with his expertise in archery, shoots down a few hawks. Goldoans storm into Begnion (not sure whose side they're on either) and blow the place apart. Phoenician hawks finally leave. Daeins and Goldoans also withdraw. Begnion is left with nothing but a husk and thousands of suddenly homeless citizens.

-Chapter Twenty-One: The Cry of Kilvas-

Naesala and his royal crows fly Soren to Daein after things have settled down.

The Greil Mercenaries are also headed to Daein; they probably want answers. Along the way, Rolf discovers he can transform into a beast, something like a cat laguz and something not quite like one. (Well, I think that was it. Maybe he was just discovering he grew a tail, like Ike did around the same time.) Marcia, with Makalov in tow, wants to accompany the Greil Mercenaries after the chaos she's witnessed.

Naesala sells Soren to a Daein general and rests someplace, having some conversation with somebody (I think).

-Chapter Twenty-Two: Crimea's Occult-

(Uggh, I can hardly sit any longer...)

A group of Daeins marches to Crimea. Soren's with him. As they come into a town, he meets two Branded children (in another version of the planned fanfic, he was to meet a Branded girl who comes to consider him as family later). The Daeins attack the Melior castle (and I think he helps the people/person he meets to escape, something like that). (I also believe the attack was to seize an Occult scroll. You know, they're really not that great in-game for Path of Radiance.)

-Chapter Twenty-Three: Devils-

The Daein general uses the occult scroll he stole from Crimea. (Whoop-dee-freaking-doo.) Soren has taken the Branded twins (or girl) with him and speaks with them, then has them hide away before he's shoved back in a cage. (Why's he even there? Probably to emphasize Daein's status as powerful, or just there for people to stare at and mull over.) They receive reports of there being intruders. The general gives the prisoner a chance to prove his worth, sending Soren out with Daein riders to investigate the intruders. (He still can't fly, he has to take a wyvern.)

The twins, meanwhile, speak to each other in their room.

It turns out the intruders are the Greil Mercenaries. After disabling the Daein wyvern riders, Soren exchanges information he picked up with them, then returns to avoid suspicion. (It's a big group, the mercenaries can't take on them all alone on unfamiliar territory.) Soren gets brutally punished for not coming back with the wyvern riders though.

-Chapter Twenty-Four: The Wound of Their Pride-

"Wound" referring to the Branded, "their" referring to beorc and laguz...

Soren speaks with the twins about themselves. (Uhh, hmm...it looks like that during the previous battle at the Crimean castle, the Daeins drove Elincia away and took her pegasus, wonder why that wasn't mentioned...) He sneaks out later to find this pegasus, keeping himself and the pegasus reassured.

-Chapter Twenty-Five: Soldiers and Mercenaries-

(I'm going mad here, I've never done such a long update on this thing. I'm also hating my own story more and more.)

The...summary on this paper's really vague, but I think what it's saying is that the mercenaries and Daeins are suddenly making preparations for battle, knowing it's imminent, and they meet on the battlefield. Ike and the Daein general with the occult scroll clash, Aether against whatever the other occult skill was meant to be. In the midst of the battle, Elincia's pegasus spooks and flies off — and Soren's on her back.

-Chapter Twenty-Six: To Where Do We Depart?-

The pegasus flies to the islands north of Daein. It turns out to be quite the haven. This whole chapter's basically about Soren and the pegasus disembarking on some mysterious islands where there is no conflict for once.

-Chapter Twenty-Seven: Hollow Regret-

A chapter reflecting on characters with some form of regret. Elincia, hiding away. Titania, leaving the mercenaries for the Daein council to find answers. Something's going on in the minds of Oscar, Ike, Haar, Gatrie, Mia, and Rolf as well. Lastly, Sothe seems to be occupied with his own thoughts, wherever he is.

-Chapter Twenty-Eight: Howls-

Boyd heads to a nearby Daein lake. He needs time to himself, so he's at the lake's edge, splashing his face with water. He notices a black figure darting by, but dismisses it and returns to his activity.

Ike is speaking to the rest of the Greil Mercenaries about Titania's disappearance. No note, no nothing. Then Boyd bursts in, shrieking, his face covered in black lesions.

He's recovered by nighttime and fit to go hunting with them. Something about the moon draws his attention, however...

-Chapter Twenty-Nine: White Wings of Serenes-

Why, it's Lord Lorazieh of the heron royal family. He's flown to the northern islands for some reason. And he has Alondite. (Why.) Sticking it in the ground, he's ready to relax while he's there, but then he happens upon Soren. They discuss the circumstances that led to their meeting and linger.

Sometime in the morning, Lorazieh finds Soren attempting to fly on his own. Being the pure-hearted individual he should be, Lorazieh decides to teach him a few things about flying.

Later on, he picks up on Soren humming that eerie galdr again...

-Chapter Thirty: The Vulture-

Thirty already? We're almost done with the planned part of the unwritten storyline... (Actually it is written, but as a bunch of brief summaries on a few pieces of paper, some of which are so vague that even I was confused.)

Zihark meets up with the mercenaries at some point, blabbering about arena battles.

The Royal Guard of Crimea finds Sanaki, alone and draggled, and takes her to safety.

Reyson is speaking to Tibarn, happily recounting his recovery until Leanne comes telling of their father's disappearance.

At the Daein base of the Imperial Guard, Titania has made her arrival, seeking to become a Rider of Daein. The council puts her strength and ability to the test. Finding her skills noteworthy, they make her a Rider.

The senators of Begnion are displeased with the state of things and begin plotting a stratagem against Phoenicis. Sigrun overhears this and discusses it with Tanith. Naesala visits, keen to make some sort of deal, but is turned away.

Meanwhile, in Gallia, Ranulf reports to Caineghis of a shadow attacking people all over Tellius between impossible intervals of time. Lethe is ill and very possibly involved, for she too had been attacked.

The twins have fled their confines and are hiding in a colosseum, whispering among themselves.

Kurthnaga is with Gareth in a castle dungeon, gazing into a darkened cell that contains a dragon twisted by the effects of Ashera's shadow.

Elincia is praying for things to go well while Geoffrey reports the emergence of a new war. Sanaki is trying to speak, but about what I'm not sure.

Stefan (probably in the desert) seems to have something on his mind...

In the Daein capital there's some conspiration going on.

Sephiran is standing among Begnion wreckage, accompanied by Nephenee (who also has a gill growth) and Astrid.

Something about Largo talking to Calill and pointing at Brom in Toha.

Something about Soren pondering and Lorazieh noticing this.

The mercenaries discover the Branded twins.

And something about Vulture. (I suppose it's Lorazieh comparing the likeness of Soren's spirit and his wings to the likeness of a vulture? Misunderstood and having a crucial role in the cycle of life?)

That's it for the planned part of the unwritten storyline.


The Unorganized Storyline

This isn't divided into sections. Because, well, it's unorganized.

I might get to this later in the day or tomorrow...

(June 10, 2009 - 8:23 P.M.)

All right.

Where'd the storyline leave off? Ah, chapter thirty. Strange...

Well, here's what I remember.

There was to be an attack on the northern island. Crows, I believe, to retake Soren. But he'd spent his time learning to fly and such, and not only that, he'd developed a connection with the pegasus and discovered Alondite. Would he recognize it at the Black Knight's sword? Perhaps.

Using Rose's agility and speed to escape, they flee the crows with some wind magic on their side to aid them. Something was to happen after or during that, but I can't quite recall what...

I don't recall the direction of the story at all. Perhaps there was so much to keep track of that I didn't even flesh everything out.

Somewhere along the line, Ike was to come into possession of the medallion and go berserk himself. He would target Mist, who the rest of the companies would be protecting. Soren would come into combat with Ike, having learned how to fly adeptly by then (and also come into possession of an unseen weapon, a pronged staff that was basically Alondite reforged, although I can't remember why or how either.) They clash on earth and at times in midair (when Soren carries Ike upward to gain an upper hand) until Soren snatches the medallion away on the end of his staff.

The moon was supposed to exert some influence over those touched by Ashera's shadow. Laguz wounded by her become true abominations, unstable and probably worse to face than feral laguz. Beorc and hybrids take on laguzlike characteristics. Naturally, they can't get comfortable with the new forms right away (their lifespans might even shorten, you never know). They were meant to go insane as it reached its full phase.

Mercenaries were going to die. Shinon by poison in a drink, Oscar by having his head severed in battle... The story wasn't going to be nice, survival-wise. Soren was going to die at the end. An ally would mistake him for the enemy and...

...Well, the idea stands. The story wasn't completely fleshed out, and is actually a bit ridiculous in some areas. The end would be a tragic one with no real destination for Ashera's shadow and such.

Yes, of course she'd vanish. Of course the dark god had something to do with the plot.

But, well.

There's the story's ghost for you.

No regrets. I finally finished.

It's storming heavily right now. I'm wondering what it means...

UTAC is done. I will still write stories, I should have vastly improved in the three years that have passed... But I no longer have to worry about this unfinished story. It's done now.

When you see Soren, see him as Soren. Don't. See. Him. As. Any. Other.

I thank the readers I once had and hope they find this...if they still wanted to.

/terminated/