Infinite Freedom: He is... not as important as you'd think.
AccessBlade: Poor, poor Orson.
Cloud Link Zero: Ah well.
chm01: Maybe it was, but it's far more insulting to, ya know, resurrect her from the grave and turning her into a puppet that can only say one word.
desoldeben: A little boo-boo on my part. I meant Artemis, I just messed up. I also looked up Tyr in on a names website. It is Norse. It means... God.
...I swear, I swear, I swear I did not know that until I looked it up.
AquaticSilver: Like I said, the spy isn't that important... And he's a boy.
X00001: Thanks man.
kenegi: It's just a passing reference.
patattack: Thanks man.
Gunlord500: Thanks man. Hope whatever your busy with goes well.
Chapter XVII: River of Regrets
The Trinity of Magic is much like the Weapons Triangle, yet I can't completely wrap my head around how it works. Lord Pent had explained it like this: the magic of holy light casts away the elder's dark, the elder's dark covers anima's nature and the nature of anima basks in the light of all that is holy. I still don't understand it outside light over dark over anima over light. That's all I need to know.
Tyr: The Fall of Nergal
Lyndis, when we met, was a talented yet inexperienced swordfighter that declared she would be my 'peerless warrior' shortly after we've met. Yet on our second tour of the Dread Isle her improvements were amazing to see; she did not fight so much as flow, weaving and attacking through enemy lines, slicing foes in half with almost careless ease. Watching her then I knew I could not compare her to any other sword handler I knew, even Karel the Sword Demon never moved like a stream and struck like a tidal wave as she. She became what she said she'd always be; a peerless warrior.
Tyr: The Fall of Nergal
"Pardon me, Neimi." Seth began, walking into the troop, the girl turning her head to look at him. "Have you seen Princess Eirika?"
"Yes, by Tyr's Wagon." She replied, checking the string of her bow.
"Thank you." The knight said, bowing his head before walking over to the wagon.
"You'll need to train as we go, to get used to mounted combat." Tyr mentioned as Eirika trotted Artemis about a little, getting used to her steed. "You need to be able to put your steed into your attacks as well. I'll get Seth to, oh speak of the devil." Tyr said, spotting the knight. "I was just mentioning to Eirika that she should ask you for training."
"I would be glad to." Seth replied as Eirika came over. "But that is not why I came. A rumour has sprung up amongst the people of the nearby town. A merchant's son claims to have seen the princess upon the battlements last night."
"Yes, I was looking for Tyrland and that's where I found him." Eirika explained.
"And he additionally claims to have seen her kissing a man."
"Ah, well then." Tyr injected. "I can see how the rumours would spring up.
"We may need to clear this up before we leave." Seth explained. "So far gossip is sounding about who would be kissing the princess. They think it might be Innes, one of our knights, myself... some even claim it is her own brother."
"...I only kiss my brother's cheeks, not his lips." Eirika said, scrunching her face up.
"I spoke with Ephraim earlier." Tyr began. "He'll stop to make a brief speech. That might be a good time to announce our relationship."
"Tyrland..." Eirika said as Tyr reached up, taking her hand.
"Come, Eirika. Would you rather I climb a mountain to announce my love?" He said, smiling up at her.
"Of course not." She said, shaking her head. "It's just... I'm not sure how soon you wanted to announce it. I am happy."
"Merlinus, stock up on anything else you need." Tyr spoke to the merchant who nodded, the troop stopping briefly in the town.
"Not to worry, the wagons will be stocked well for our journey my friend." Merlinus replied, smiling and bowing before turning to leave for a store. Tyr himself sighed before turning to the town center. Eirika and Ephraim were standing on a small platform, Seth standing beside and behind them, a small crowd gathered about as Tyr walked over, standing at the bottom of the platform.
"Please, settle down." Ephraim asked, raising a hand. The crowd hushed, only a few whispers left before he spoke. "I thank you for coming on such short notice today. I will try and be brief. I understand the hardships you've gone through. Grado tore into your lives, your homes, your dreams. They let monsters and bandits run about, unchecked. These past few months I've been away, fighting Grado, have been a nightmare for you, my good people. For that I apologize, for your troubles, for your pains. I have told my father's vassals to get what army we have left together to fight and get the bandits and monsters under control." A small cheer went up, Ephraim letting them sound for a while before raising his hand again, letting the noise dim.
"There is more for me to do, however. Prince Lyon of Grado still roams with remnant forces. The source of these monsters must be ended. So I must apologize again... I must leave. I must see this through, end the threat. But this I promise; I will return, I will take my father's crown and throne and will do my best to restore our lands, our happiness. It will not be easy, I know. But I know my people. You are hard working, determined and courageous. I know that in my absence you will rise above the occasion. I only wish it didn't need to be like this."
"Your Highness." An elderly man spoke up, raising his hand. "I, the mayor, think I speak for us all when I say... give those bloody monsters a good telling blow!"
Ephraim chuckles lightly as the crowd let off one short cheer. "That we will, my good man. Now before we go, we must address something. Tyr, come up here, will you?"
Tyr nodded once before going to the platform's stairs, stepping up, lowering his hood before moving to stand next to Eirika. A few whispers sounded before Ephraim began to speak again.
"This is Tyrland, the Bernese Tactician some call the Duke of War." The prince began. "He has assisted my sister since the fall of Renais to Grado. He has helped her in our times of need with his strategies and teachings." He began as Eirika reached out, grabbing Tyr's hand, smiling at him. "He is also Eirika's betrothed."
The crowd, murmured getting louder as Eirika stepped closer to Tyr, letting her hand go to wrap an arm about her shoulder. Eirika leaned up and pecked his cheek. "You should speak." She said, Tyr nodding once before letting her go, stepping forwards, Ephraim giving him a simple nod.
"People." Tyr began, the crowd silencing. "I am Tyrland. Son of Duke Tenland. I hail from Bern, and I have fought in battles since I turned eighteen. When this... I am hoping that the coming battles are my last. I will see these battles through until this land can be at peace. Afterwards, I plan to be at Eirika's side as husband, and Ephraim's as advisor. I ask that you accept me, but I know that such may only come in time. Until then I vow to do everything in my power to see your prince and princess home."
A murmur sounded as Eirika walked up, taking Tyr's arm, smiling. "He is my love. He has my heart. My trust." She spoke. "We will see our land restored."
Tyr looked over the crowd; a few voiced confusion and discontent, but many more gave soft smiles and looks of approval. Eventually one man in the back shouted out. "All hail! The Princess and the Duke!"
"Seems to be... I think they may like me..." Tyr whispered.
"When they get to know you... They shall love you." Eirika replied, kissing his cheek.
The Sacred Stones that defeated the Demon King radiate a constant and dazzling light. The Sacred Stones are the only known power against the dark, the last hope of humanity.
It is only natural that evil would seek to destroy the Sacred Stones... There can be no other force behind this attempt to gain the stones.
A childhood friend appears before Eirika.
Two years ago...
"How do you intend to use the Sacred Stone, Lyon?" Ephraim asked, himself and Eirika seated in a sitting room with the soft spoken Prince of Grado. "Do you really think you can tap into it's power?"
"Mmm..." Lyon began, thinking before he spoke. "My research isn't complete yet, but there's no mistaking the power the Sacred Stones contain. And the Stone of Grado seems especially responsive to my dark magic. I suppose it's because it contains both sacred and demonic properties. Regardless, if I can just press my studies a little harder... Well, I think I might be able to heal my father's illness. If that works, there's no telling how many other people I can help as well."
"Do you think this is wise?" Eirika asked, concerned. "The power contained within the stones is beyond our understanding... My father tells me that the stones possess a power not to be trifled with."
"Uh-huh..." Lyon replied sadly. "Father Macgregor is also against it. That's why they still won't give me direct access to the Stone of Grado. For the time being, I've made do with the radiant energies surrounding it. They're nothing compared to the raw power of the stone itself, but... If I show Father Macgregor some real progress, perhaps one day..."
"Using the Sacred Stones to study magic..." Ephraim replied with a shudder.
"Ephraim, Eirika, what do you two think?" Lyon asked. "Using the divine power of the Sacred Stones in this way... You don't think it's a very good idea, do you?"
"...It's just that I know nothing at all of magic." Ephraim admitted. "I would that there were some way I could help you, but I simply can't. But, Lyon, I've seen how hard you've worked to help others. I know how much you want the power to make others happy. I know these things, and because I know you, I trust your intentions."
"Ephraim..." Lyon let off, smiling.
"If you hope to use the power of the Sacred Stone for good, I trust you can. I'm behind you all the way."
"I agree with Ephraim entirely." Eirika added. "You spend every night in the library, studying cures for your father's illness. The power of the Sacred Stones is too powerful to be used for personal gain. But you, Lyon... I think you'll be fine. You're the kindest person I know."
"Thanks, both of you." Lyon replied, smiling wider. "Hearing those words from you means a lot to me. Actually- and this hasn't been made public yet- but... I've already saved someone using the knowledge I've gleamed so far."
"You have?' Ephraim asked.
"Uh-huh..." Lyon replied, nodding. "A while back, a fire ravaged Serafew, and a little girl got trapped in the flames. Her burns were terrible: not even healing staves were able to cure her injuries. But just a sliver of the stone's power restored her life and healed her wounds. We saved that girl's life, Ephraim! Oh, if you could have seen the tears of joy in her mother's eyes!"
"You really did it, huh?" Ephraim let out, chuckling. "You are special, Lyon. Congratulations!"
"Well... thanks." Lyon said humbly. "But there's still so much more to be done. I am happy, though. To be honest I just want to help people. I want to put the ancient magics to use for the common good... That's how I feel."
"Lyon..." Eirika said softly, giggling.
"And as my research moves forward, I'll be able to do much more, too. We have only the barest understanding of how dark magic operates. Maybe we can use it not only to heal wounds, but also to stop diseases... What if we can read the future, predict disaster, move mountains!" Lyon let off with excitement.
"Hold on, Lyon." Eirika said calmly, raising a hand. "You can't take too much on yourself all at once. What good is helping people if you sacrifice yourself to do it?"
"Oh..." Lyon let off, chuckling nervously. "Yes, of course. Sorry. I got carried away."
"You have a soft heart, Lyon." Ephraim pointed out. "I bet you haven't taken any real time off at all. So this is what we're going to do. Today we're going into the city. And you're going with us, Lyon."
"What?" Lyon let off, blinking. "But Ephraim, you've got a history report due."
"We're taking today off." Ephraim stated firmly, standing up and grabbing Lyon's arm. "C'mon, let's go."
"Bu-but, Ephraim..." Lyon began as he was pulled to his feet, pulling against Ephraim as the Prince of Renais dragged the reluctant Prince of Grado to the door.
"It's just one day, and I won't tell anyone." Eirika assured him as she began to follow. "Won't it be fun for the three of us to spend a day in the city?"
"Ephraim, Eirika..." Lyon uttered as Ephraim finally let him go. "Thanks so much. I'm lucky to have the two of you as friends.
"We have the Stone of Renais." Ephraim summed up, speaking to Tyr, Eirika, Innes and L'Arachel in a small meeting, camp breaking from the lunch break they just had. "The final Sacred Stone is in Rausten."
"L'Arachel, can you tell us anything about the Stone of Rausten?" Eirika asked.
"Naturally!" She replied cheerfully. "As Rausten's very own Princess, I know a thing or two about our stone. The palace reliquary currently houses our Sacred Stone. Follow me, and I'll take you to there."
"I sent the Frelian army ahead before us." Innes added. "They should be en route to Rausten. If we hurry, we can join up with them at the banks of the Narube River."
"My main concern is how much of Grado's army remains." Tyr asked. "Between the retreating forces, what ever General Reiv has, plus anything Lyon himself has and whatever mercenaries they hired... We may yet be looking at a formidable fighting force. And with their backs to the wall we can expect them to be more fierce than usual."
"Agreed." Innes replied. "The play never ends until the last act is finished."
"Do not falter!" A Frelian solider cried out. "Show them the might of Frelia!" He cried out a small group of men charging towards the descending Wyvern Knights. Each man was met with a lance and struck dead in little time.
All across the river the scene repeated with mages and warriors of Grado defeating Frelian forces, slaughtering them. A lone pegasus knight clutched her jaw, leading a small group of refugees away.
"Lady S-Syrene..." A young girl spoke up. "The enemy is headed this way."
"Are you serious?" The knight asked, grimacing. "Grado's been defeated, and still they fight on? And they're tough."
"You Frelian fools have been wiped out by those guys..." An elderly man let out, glaring before looking sacred. "Oh, no... Now we're finished as well."
"Everyone, please remain calm." Syrene began. "If you panic and flee, the enemy will simply surround you. If you remain here and don't move, I promise to protect you all."
"Lady Syrene..." The girl breathed out.
"Oh dear..." Tyr let out as he stopped his wagon. Hopping off his wagon he ran to the front, pulling out his spyglass.
"Brother! Look there!" Eirika said, pointing out near the front of the formation.
"A skirmish!" Ephraim exclaimed.
"Is that Syrene?" Innes asked, blinking. "What's going on? We must go to her aid."
"Everyone, hold!" L'Arachel bellowed out. "Something evil is afoot..."
"That has been the norm through this campaign." Tyr quipped as a flash of crimson light appeared before them, the twins and Tyr drawing their weapons as a figure appeared as they light faded. "Who are you?" Tyr demanded, stepping forwards to join the Royals of Renais.
"Lyon!" Ephraim exclaimed.
"Eirika... Ephraim... And I assume you are Tyrland..." Lyon addressed.
"Lyon..." Eirika breathed, moving her horse forwards. "Where have you been all this time?"
"Eirika, stop!" Ephraim barked out, holding out a hand, Eirika halting her steed.
"Lyon..." Ephraim began. "We met recently in Grado Keep, right? Do you remember what you told me then? You told me this was all your doing, that you started this war."
"What?" Lyon let off, surprised. "Ephraim... Why are you so angry? We haven't seen each other in so long... What's happened?"
"Lyon..." Eirika let off.
"He seems sincere, Prince Ephraim." Tyr said softly. "But... I am not sure, but something is wrong. This might be Lyon's personality showing past the control, but something is wrong."
"I hear you." Ephraim replied softly before addressing Lyon again. "You said it yourself. Lyon, you must be under the control of someone or something else."
"Please do not let this be true..." Eirika began, setting a hand to her heart before beginning. "Lyon... Tyrland believe you are possessed by the Demon King himself. Please, tell me it is not so!"
"Of course it isn't, Eirika." Lyon replied, waving his hands. "Please, do not worry. Come here. Closer..."
"My advice, My Love... Don't." Tyr replied simply as Lyon began to cough and groan, doubling over.
"Ah! Gah... ahh... uuuuhhaaah... ga..."
"Lyon?" Eirika yelped, as Tyr moved in front of her horse to block her passage.
"No, Eirika!" Tyr let off. "This is not Lyon... Only a shell..."
"Gah... rrraaaa..." Lyon let off. "Ev... ahh... evil... Stay... back... Eirika..." Lyon let off, stepping backwards.
"What?" She let off, softly as Lyon looked up at her.
"Get away... from me... quickly..." Lyon begged. "If you... don't... I will surely... ...destroy you... Flee... qui-quickly... Go!"
"...What you see, My Princess, is what remains of Lyon. What little there is..." Tyr began. "The rest, however..." He stopped as Lyon stood up straight, bearing a smirk in place of a smile.
"Hi. It's been a while since I saw you two last, hasn't it?" Lyon asked, chuckling a bit.
"Lyon?" Eirika breathed out. "Is that... no, it cannot be him speaking."
"It's not." Tyr replied.
"Stay back, Eirika." Ephraim repeated. "Keep your guard up. That's not Lyon."
"I'm not Lyon? That's rich. A masterpiece. You always thought Lyon was-"
"Silence, demon." Tyr demanded. "End your games. I know of you, Demon King Fomortiis. Spare us the mockery and reveal yourself.
"...Hmph. Very well then. I was wrong to disregard the value of human emotions and intellect." Lyon spoke, but now with a warbling voice that was a pitch lower.
"No... No, no, it cannot be." Eirika let off, a tear coming to her eye.
"I've had my fun pretending to be human, but the need for charades has passed." He said, no longer smiling or smirking. "You are correct. This body no longer belongs to your young Lyon. I devoured his pathetic heart ages ago. I admit, you are a smart one, human. Tell me, how long has it been that you knew that I was the one behind all this?"
"I suspected after we rescued Ephraim." Tyr admitted. "But it wasn't until awhile ago that I figured out you had possessed someone, let alone the Prince of Grado. You are a clever beast, but that is all you are. A beast."
"Ha ha ha ha!" The Demon King bellowed out before shaking his head. "A beast? At least be honest. I am the KING of beasts! Lyon... Lyon... O Prince of misery... Come out. Be not shy... This body is lost to you... It is mine to compel..."
"Tyrland... What is he saying...?" Eirika asked.
"Your dreams, Lyon... I am about to make them come true for you. I am about to crush Prince Ephraim and take Princess Eirika for my own. Isn't that all that you've ever prayed for, young fool of a prince?"
"Jealous of Ephraim... In love with Eirika..." Tyr summed up. "I suspected at our outpost meeting this was the case... That explains it. Some of Lyon exists still, but he is so... dominated and warped... It is sad."
"Rejoice, Lyon. The time has come... Ephraim, the man you envy... Eirika, the woman you desire... And even Tyrland, who claimed the woman you desire... I will give you your darkest fantasies, your blackest wishes! Come and fight me, mortal beings. I await you!" The Demon King said before vanishing in a flash of light.
"...Well it's not as bad as I thought." Tyr sighed. "It's worse..."
"Tyrland..." Eirika let off, dismounting. "What am I... What will we do...?"
"...I spoke with Lute, Artur and Saleh about the Demon King at length once." Tyr began. "Lyon... I fear he is beyond recovery..."
"My love, listen." Tyr began, grabbing her shoulders. "I would save him if I could, but he didn't lie. There... there isn't enough left of Lyon to save. All we can do is kill him... Grant him a merciful death... I... I am sorry." He said, shaking his head, a tear rolling down his cheek. "I am..."
"...I understand." Erika replied, nodding once. "Please... Pit me against him."
"Eirika, I cannot-"
"If you think I cannot win, I will understand." Erika began, before turning and remounting her horse.
"Eirika..." Ephraim added as he watched his sister.
"But he has been a close friend of mine... If a blade must end his life, then let it be mine. Let me be the one to grant him peace."
"...Very well." Tyr consented. "But... I... I just never wanted to put you in such a painful situation. Be strong. Regardless... On to the situation at hand."
"Syrene is in need of aid." Innes pointed out. "And she is protecting those civilians."
"I know. Our first priority is supporting her." Tyr replied. "Cormag! Here."
"Aye." The blonde said, guiding his wyvern over. "What do you need of me?"
"Tell me, how much can your beast carry?" Tyr asked.
"With all due respect, Sir Cormag..." Wallace said, seated behind the wyvern knight as the two sailed across the sky, Florina and Tana to their left carrying Ross and Innes, Vanessa to their right carrying Garcia. "I would much prefer my boots on the ground."
"Relax, Sir Wallace, it won't be long now." Cormag replied simply as they began to lower.
Syrene was still there, holding the bridge as best she could against charging soldiers. Cormag dove a little faster, to place Wallace as instructed.
"Syrene, prepare to disengage!" Innes called out, the knight guarding the bridge, gasping a bit, but still able to put a lance past her foe. Once Cormag landed, Wallace leapt off, gripping his lance and running for the bridge. "Now, let Wallace hold them off!"
"Aye!" Syrene barked back, guiding her steed away, just as Wallace reached the bridge, a new wave of foes marching across, the other pegasus knights landing, letting their passengers off.
"Ha! Come then, Grado fools!" Wallace bellowed out, banging his free hand to his chest. "Come and break your weapons against me!"
"Syrene!" Tana called out, totting over to her fellow knight. "Are you all right?"
"Princess Tana!" Syrene let off, saluting once. "What are you doing here? This place is dangerous!" She called out as Wallace's lance found its first victim.
"We're here to make sure you don't die." Innes barked back, notching an arrow and letting it fly towards the enemy, Garcia and Ross doing the same with their bows. "Lead the civilians past the bridge. Ross and Tana will go with you."
"Aye." Ross said, setting his bow away and running to join the knight, pulling his axe out. "We'll see these folks home safe, won't we?"
"Thank you." Syrene said, smiling warmly. "Let us be off then."
In all honesty, things were working out according to plan. The civilians were being escorted away by Syrene, Tana and Ross as the rest of the troop marched up the first bridge and towards the fortress the shell of Lyon was likely at. They came across a few mages knocking a tree over to make a bridge, but he dispatched Gerik, Marisa, Dolza and Moulder to deal with them, across the tree bridge themselves and work their way up to join the rest.
Neimi was dispatching any wyvern that came close that was not ridden by Cormag, while Franz and Gilliam dealt with any she couldn't. Eirika and Ephraim led the rest forwards, past the civilians who offered thanks. By the time they reached the second bridge Wallace stood there was nothing more than a pile of bodies, himself, one prince and a warrior.
"Bloody hell, Wallace." Tyr called out. "You'll give everyone else in this unit a bad reputation if you kill so many by yourself. At least tell me Innes and Garcia took their fair share."
"More that that." Innes replied. "But still, Wallace is an exceptional knight. I can see why you'd hold him in high regard."
"If everyone is done patting me on my back, let's go kill this Demon Prince or King or whatever, and give him a good what for!"
"Are you sure you're ready for this?" Tyr asked Eirika one last time, the form of the overtaken Lyon not far from them.
"I am." Eirika said simply, Sieglinde in her hand. "I will grant him peace."
"Very well." Tyr said. "Natasha, Neimi, Artur, prepare to support. Eirika... Be careful, My Love."
"I will." The princess said before guiding Artemis into a trot to the Prince of Grado's form, stopping some distance away.
"Lyon!" She called out, sword held over her head. "If any of you is left in there, then I'll say this, my friend! I am here. I will grant you peace and freedom from the Demon King! I am... I am sorry how I must do it however."
"Heh heh..." The Demon King let off. "Wretched girl. Are you listening, Lyon? Is this truly the girl you loved? She comes to kill me. Watch now, O Prince of despair as I use my hands to tear her limb from limb!" He called out before casting a spell, runes appearing before him as Eirika charged.
Twelve flames of dark purple appeared before him before being launched at the princess, the woman guiding her horse around the first batch, then using her blessed blade to cut the rest apart. As she neared the form of Lyon she let off a cry before stabbing forth, a black barrier blocking her blade, but causing Lyon's form to shudder.
He in turn launched a quick spell, the girl leaning away from the blast of dark flame before stabbing again, hitting the same barrier before rearing her horse up and thrusting again. Then the barrier shattered, Lyon leaping back out of attack range.
"Heh..." The Demon King chuckled, before teleporting away.
"Urr..." Lyon's form let off, rubbing his face with a hand as he reappeared; past the bridge were Grado's men lay dead. "Bah... Can't hold up to such as this? Accursed human flesh is too brittle, too weak..."
"There!" The Demon King heard, the mounted units of the opposing troop charging towards him, Eirika and Ephraim at the lead, Tyr riding pillion behind the princess. "Hold, you demon!" Tyr bellowed out as the horses slowed down, the man hopping off.
Lyon's form smirked in response. "Now, I know your strength." He said, looking right at Eirika. "It is time to leave. I sacrifice this flesh and return to my body of old. This does not end. The world will drown again in dark- ack!" He let off, the last cry caused by a crossbow bolt to the thigh, doubling over to grasp the missile.
"Are you done yet?" Tyr asked calmly. "Because it's time to put you to an end." He said, reloading his weapon.
"I find you vexing, boy." The Demon King let off, ripping the bolt from his leg before vanishing in a pillar of light.
"We will not let you flee!" Ephraim called out holding his lance high. "After him, Eirika! We have to find where he's gone. Search everywhere! I can't allow him to desecrate my friend's body any longer!"
"Fan out, groups of five." Tyr ordered. "But don't stray far. We'll meet here in one hour, and be careful. He is a hazardous foe."
"Eirika, everyone's checked in." Tyr said, walking up to the princess with Innes beside him, a bow and lance in his hands. "We haven't found a trace of the Demon King."
"Even so, my solders pursue Prince Lyon's trail." Innes added. "Our trackers are excellent. They'll have him soon."
"We'll be settling here for the night for that reason." Tyr injected. "No sense running about the countryside blind. If Innes' men are as good as he says, we'll have a path to follow come sunrise."
"That's good..." Eirika replied, nodding once.
"There is something else I need to speak to you two about." Innes added. "The messenger I sent to Frelia returned not long ago. She brought a package I'd requested: Frelia's Sacred Twins."
"You have the Sacred Twins?" Erika asked.
"Yes." Innes said with a nod. "Frelia may have lost her Sacred Stone... However, it seems the Sacred Twin relics remain undisturbed. I had them brought here. Behold!"
"These..." Eirika began as Innes held up the weapons.
"Frelia's Sacred Twins." Innes said with a bow in one hand and a lance in the other. "Nidhogg, the Serpent Bow, and Vidofnir, the Winged Lance. I want you to take them."
"There are for you, aren't they?" Eirika replied, shaking her head. "They're for the rulers of Frelia."
"No, I entrust them to your care." Innes insisted. "You and Ephraim are the leaders of this army. Use them as you see fit."
"Thank you, Prince Innes..." Eirika replied. "I appreciate your sacrifice."
"It is no sacrifice, and I require no thanks." Innes replied. "We're fighting for the same thing here: victory."
"My advice is to take the lance, but leave the bow with Innes." Tyr spoke. "I can think of no better hands to use that weapon than his."
"I agree." Eirika replied, taking hold of the lance.
"I still need to find someone to take hold of the other Sacred Twins we've accumulated..." Tyr added. "I should work on that."
"Knoll, have you a moment?" Tyr asked, approaching the shaman. He could see Eirika and Syrene talking to the villagers that were escorted away.
"Yes." Knoll replied, turning to face him, a small, disfigured being moving around to face Tyr. It was just over three feet tall, covered in ratted rags and looked like a cross between a zombie and a ghost with an axe in its hands.
"...Okay, what is that?" Tyr asked simply as Knoll waved his hand, the creature vanishing in a puff of smoke.
"A phantasm." Knoll replied simply. "Think of it as a dark magic construct."
"...Yes, of course..." Tyr let off. 'I really, really hate elder magic...' He thought before speaking. "Anyway, I came with the dark tome, Gleipnir. With the way things are going we need all of the Sacred weapons in good hands. I would entrust it to your use." He said, passing the book to Knoll who bowed as he took it.
"I thank you, Sir." Knoll replied. "I only hope my actions now will atone for what I helped set in motion."
"Sain, Florina." Tyr addressed as he walked up to the pair, Vidofnir in hand. "I hate to interrupt the husband and wife, but I will be brief."
"That is fine." Sain said, smiling as he kissed his wife's cheek. "We always have time for friends, my good sir. Can we help you?"
"This is Vidofnir. A Sacred Lance of Frelia." Tyr began, holding out the weapon. "With the days ahead looking bleaker it is time we put all the legends of the land to good use. Sain, you are the finest lanceman I've commanded to date. Only Ephraim can claim match to you. I would ask you use this weapon."
"Thank you." The knight said, taking the weapon and feeling its weight. "I will take good care of it and return it to the throne of Frelia when we are done. It is in the best of hands."
"Lute." Tyr began, holding up a tome. "Do you know what this is?"
"Hmm?" Lute let off, turning to look. "But of course. It is Excalibur, the Wind Tome. A powerful magic tome and Sacred Twin of Jehanna it is-"
"Yours until the end of the campaign." Tyr interrupted, tossing the book to her, the girl catching it.
"You will be expected to return it to Joshua when we are done. Clear?"
"Yes, of course..." She said, looking over the book. "Until then... Oh, I shall study it!"
"Garcia." Tyr called out, the black axe, Garm, in his hand. "Am I disturbing you?"
"No." Garcia said, he and Ross sitting on the ground, a pair of training axes between them. "We were just taking a break form sparring. May we help you?"
"I have one of Grado's Sacred Twins here." Tyr began, holding up the axe. "This is Garm, the Black Axe. I wish you to use it. In the dark days to come we will need all the strength the Sacred Twins of each land provide. You're our most experienced axeman. I want you to use it. Return it to Knoll or Duessel at the end of the campaign, but until then use it as your weapon."
"The thought is appreciated." Garcia began, standing up. "But with all due respect, Sir, I must refuse."
"...May I ask why?" Tyr asked as Ross stood up as well.
"Yeah, Dad, I mean it's the best axe in the world." Ross added. "Why wouldn't you take it?"
"Because I ain't getting any younger." Garcia began. "My prime is behind me. When I am done here the best I'll be doing is training new recruits or advising younger solders. My best days are gone. Don't burden my old bones with such honour. Instead... Let my son use the axe."
"I've seen him grow." Garcia said proudly. "I've seen him learn. I've seen him fight. The boys got the best of me and the best of his mother. The days behind are mine, but the days ahead are his. Give him the axe, Tyrland of Bern. Give him the honour, my son can shoulder it."
"I can't argue." Tyr replied. "That's fine. Really, Ross, when we met you were but a wet behind the ears kid with no idea what he was in for. You've become a man since then and loyal friend. Use the axe proudly."
"Thanks boss." Ross said, taking the axe from Tyr's hands, feeling the weight. "Rest easy and well. I'll do you proud, wait and see!"
"Eirika, how are things?" Tyr asked as he walked over to the princess.
"Everything is fine." She replied, stepping into him and hugging him briefly. "The civilians are well, just a little shook up. And what have you been doing?"
"Passing out the Sacred Twins we had in storage until now." Tyr explained. "The time is now that we use them. The end isn't far off, I think. But the battles ahead will be harder than ever. We dealt the Grado Remnant a harsh blow, but what is left will surely fight like madmen. And even once they are gone, there are Elimine knows how many monsters left to fight."
"Must you be pessimistic?" Eirika sighed.
"I am realistic." Tyr replied. "Don't worry, My Love, I am not becoming depressed at the odds. In fact, I am optimistic. We've proven ourselves superior in every conflict, and I do not see that changing. Only the Demon King at his full might will give us pause. Tonight I am going to go over a plan with you an Ephraim, in the event we do fight him. I cannot guarantee success, but it's the best I can come up with. If Rausten offers their Sacred Twins to us then it'll all be easier."
"You are a man grounded by experience." Eirika summed up, kissing his cheek. "But I am glad to have you with me, to keep me from rushing off with the wind."
"And I am likewise glad to have you, to uplift my spirits." Tyr replied, smiling back. "Now, let us flirt later. I am sure we need not make eyes roll by being all lovey-dovey."
Eirika giggled in response. "I will be helping Tana and Merlinus with dinner. I hope you will enjoy, My Dear."
Knoll from Shaman to Summoner