Xenosaga IV

"KOS-MOS, did you feel pain when you went to sleep?"

"…Yes and no. I was sad to say goodbye and good night, but I was happy to have helped preserve this world. I was also glad to have saved my friends."

"So you truly are complete…"

"Is it time for me to awaken again?"

"Yes. This world needs both of you again."

"I understand. However, I am not Mary. I have her power and her will, but I am KOS-MOS. Does this mean I shall forget again? And exactly why did we continue to exist?"

"That which is meant to exist, shall always exist. Even after your physical bodies were destroyed, both you and Yeshua are still here. I understand you are not Mary, but did her feelings for him transcend?"

"I don't know. As I am not Mary, any feelings for Yeshua don't truly exist in me. They only transcended with her will, since it was her will to be with him…correct?"

"You were not complete long enough to know if your feelings were your own or Mary's. The proof that you are not Mary is that her soul still exists, and yours does too. Your souls are connected, but not one in the same."

"Then they are together?"

"No. They are apart. However, if you so chose to stay two different existences, you shall not be the one in his heart."

"And if we become one, I will lose what I am now."

"Correct. Mary does not had a body to incarnate in, but you do."

"My old frame? It could be rebooted?"

"There is a young woman about to find your old frame. If you wish to reenter the world you once lived, she will succeed."

"How many years have passed?"

"One hundred and fifty-seven."

"Is there a threat to the world right now?"

"You and Yeshua still exist, so does Wilhelm. He is trying to reenter that world again, and I was hoping you also would be ready. If you, Yeshua, and Mary were ready to fight when he breaks free from his sleep, then it would not threaten humanity."

"One hundred and fifty-seven years is not a long time. Humans used to be able to live in one body for one hundred and thirty. Is humanity still low in numbers?"

"Yes. There are only five billion people. They are only starting to comprehend hyperspace again, but Realian technology has been lost."

"All right. I shall reenter their world."

"Keep up, Kukai!" I said, hoping over a large tree root. "We don't know when those Ormus soldiers will show up."

"You're a slave-driver!" Rukiro Kukai grumbled following me.

The forest was dense, and good for hiding, but if we were ambushed it wouldn't be us doing the hiding right away. We'd be at clear disadvantage.

"We need to find that artifact my connection gear picked up."

"Are you sure that connection gear still works?" Rukiro asked doubtfully. "Those things are antiques. My great grandfather's stopped working before I was even born. I got to use my great grandmother's a little while, but it died too."

"Well," I said sarcastically, "Your great grandfather looked and acted like a pre-teen until the day he died. It's not my fault your father didn't try to preserve any lineage."

"And your great grandmother took great care of her connection gear?"

"Better than Rubedo did, apparently since it still works."

"But are you sure it's not a glitch?" He asked doubtfully.

"It matches Shion's records almost perfectly." I retorted.

"And that's why it could be the memory crapping out and it's giving you screwy readings? What about the batteries? That thing hasn't been charged in nearly one hundred years."

"It's a possibility." I admitted. "But if it is KOS-MOS…"

"You have a piece of scrap metal on your hands. A two-hundred pound piece of scrap metals no less."

"Actually, since the last reading of KOS-MOS' status reported most of her limbs missing she's probably only one hundred pounds or less."

"That's beside the point, even if we did have the technology they had when KOS-MOS was functional there is no way we could reboot her. We don't even know how to make Realians anymore, never mind android-parts made of nanomachines."

"But we do have the technology!" I shot back, "It's all on the Elsa."

"And stopped working years ago!" Rukiro said firmly, "The Elsa is an abounded ruin, even if anything on it did still work; we don't have the power to activate it."

"Actually, we do."

"I don't like the sound of that." He said darkly.

"We have the Zohar!"

"What are you talking about?" He snapped, "The Zohar is a relic of the past, there's nothing more precious to humanity."

"KOS-MOS used the Zohar as a door to access U-DO's power. If the Zohar still exists, so does U-DO. Knowing that, there's a good chance KOS-MOS does too."

"You don't know if she still exists." He said quietly. "We don't even know if KOS-MOS is Mary, or if they're separate entities."

"It doesn't matter."

He grabbed my wrist, stopping me saying firmly, "Yes, it does matter." My eyes met his as he continued, "If you have the same disease Aoi Uzuki and Shion Uzuki had messing with the Zohar and U-DO will kill you. U-TIC's records are lost, we don't know if it's something that's passed by generations. You could be killing yourself."

I smiled softly at him saying, "Thanks for your concern," I pulled away from his grip saying, "But I'll be fine."

Rukiro looked a lot like Rubedo had, or at least with eye color. He had clear blue eyes and brown hair, and even though he had the genes of a U.R.T.V. and conventional Realian since he was also half human, he hadn't stopped growing yet. He was only two inches taller than me, even though he had a great paranoia of simply ceasing to age before he was fully grown.

"I'm supposed to be concerned." He said, sounding unsatisfied and followed. "We are supposed to be engaged, after all."

"Yeah, but that was arranged when we were children." I said dismissively. "We've never taken it seriously, and always planned to call it off anyway. Right?"

He was silent, and I felt sick a moment before turning around about to confront him about his silence, but I stopped halfway hearing rusting toward the north, the direction we'd been heading.

"I'm sorry, T-elos…but this is goodbye."

I shook my head, trying to clear the abrupt vision. What was that…?

I held my finger to my lips, telling him to be silent, and I continued onward slowly. I peaked through a thick flowering bush, seeing a clearing ahead. There were five Ormus soldiers there, dressed in all white. The official looking uniforms of past were gone in the organization, so members were only identified by a red tattoo of their old logo on their backs and the fact they wore all white when on missions.

They were all men, and I saw a distinctly large one heaving a battered and worn object over his shoulder. I saw the feminine torso, faded bluish white hair, and torn up clothing, and jumped forward acting before thinking.

I drew one of my pistols, firing two shots instantly killing to of the soldiers. I carefully fired another shot at the one carrying KOS-MOS' corpse, then the forth. The fifth soldier, a short young man started to run away, but tripped over one of his fallen comrades and fell with a thud inside the small clearing.

I walked forward slowly, having every intention of killing him. He rolled over, trying to scramble away from me.

"W-who are you?" He stammered, eyes filled with panic. He fumbled with the pistol at his side futilely.

"Hikaru." I said flatly. "Hikaru Uzuki." I said and fired one shot at his heart, killing him instantly.

"What the hell were you thinking?" Rukiro demanded, running to see if I was alright.

"Actually, I wasn't thinking. I was taking aim." I replied truthfully, pulling what was left of KOS-MOS' frame away from the fallen soldier. Both her legs were missing, and she only had one arm. It wasn't gory, because she was completely mechanical. Her clothes were tattered, the glove that had once covered her remaining right arm gone.

"Just shut up and help me carry her."

"Exactly how do you plan on carrying her? She's only got one arm."

I scowled up at him, noticing his eyes had come to rest on her almost completely exposed breasts, my scowl turning into a glare.

I jumped to my feet, and slapped him across the face yelling, "You pervert!"