Cuttingmoon57 here, and back with chapter thirty-eight of The Tainted Grimoire. Any beliefs expressed throughout my story are not my own. They are simply unique to the characters and their personalities. Just wish to clarify that.

Credit for making sure this gaggle of words is somewhat coherent goes to Supreme Distraction. Every writer who wants to be taking seriously should have a beta, and now I have mine. Hope you enjoy.

Disclaimer: I do not own Final Fantasy or anything related to it. If I did, FF12 would already be getting a direct PS2 or PS3 sequel. I also don't own any other anime, manga, or game that I take elements or characters from.

Suggestion: Head to Final Fantasy Wikia for information or images of the main cast if you'd like to see pictures of their appearance. They remain virtually unchanged in my story. (Other non-canon characters will be described.)

"Blah" = talking

"Blah" = thoughts, writing, sound effects, or flashbacks

"BLAH"= Yelling

(Blah)= scene change


"This is a fight with both his life and pride on the line. By the end of this night, he will lose one of these things."

All fell quiet after Cheney's words, only the rhythmic sound of crickets chirping filling the empty void. Then, footsteps sounded, slowly. Luso's feet began moving towards the gate, one foot after another. Both he and Cheney stayed silent as they crossed paths, and when the boy was a few feet past him, he spoke, not turning around.

"We know why he's doing this, and we don't care." The chocolate haired boy held up the folded note in his hands. "I don't know where you get this from, Cheney, but if there's one thing I learned in Clan Gully, it's this."

He turned around solely to toss Bowen's note at the Hunter's feet.

"Your comrade's life always weighs more than his pride."

He faced towards the gate again, and continued walking. Within the moment, Veis and Loa begin silently following, passing by the subtly stunned Hunter. It was as the trio reached the gate that they heard Cheney's voice.

"It seems that's the second time you've had to lecture me since I've met you, Luso Clemens." Luso turned his head, watching as Cheney picked up his Fey bow and slung it over his shoulder.

He smirked, with the Fighter mirroring his action before responding.

"Let's not make it a third."

A midnight chase through the forest! The Climax to the Vieg Town Arc!


Loa

One cannot grow dwelling on the past

Only by looking towards the future can he move ahead

Chapter Thirty Eight: Blue Rain Blues 4 (Throwdown)


"Hey, watch where you're going!"

Tweigel kept moving forward, calling out a small apology over his shoulder to the swarthy Seeq he had accidentally bumped into on his way through town. Turning his head around to the front, his eyes caught sight of Veis, who was only a few meters ahead of him, keeping pace with the Nu Mou's un-agile body structure.

As he continued running, dodging any more of the few scattered street-goers crossing his path, he looked down at the object in his hands: a vile-shaped item wrapped wholly in blue cloth. The two had just departed from the item shop, and were well on their way towards the Jadewood.

Where Klesta was.

Where he believed Bowen would be, still alive and breathing.

The Illusionist muttered a small prayer under his breath, hoping that the contents of the object in his hands would be enough to help their cause. There was also the matter of Loa gathering help, but the Nu Mou was positive that, from what he had seen of Luso and Vili, that the two would be more than willing to help.

An uneasy feeling crept across him as he set sight on the trees of the Jadewood in the distance. Tonight would be the deciding night in their long, fruitless war against Klesta. His plan was already set in his mind; all there was now was to execute it.

He looked up at the sky, watching as large, dark clouds drifted slowly in front of the waxing moon, shielding most of its ivory light.

It was going to rain tonight.

(Jadewood, Interior)

"Where is he?"

Bowen moved quickly and with purpose, vaulting over a downed jade tree that lay in his path. He performed a forward flip in the air before easily touching down in a crouch on the other side, kicking up a small patch of rustling leaves with the displaced wind from his landing. He gathered his bearings in a split second, then was moving once again, eyes focused and determined.

It had been almost an hour since he set out. His departure had been a relatively uneventful one. After placing his farewell note on Tweigel's bed, he had set out to one of the few open shops he had come across earlier on his way back to the Inn. He gathered only essential items, mostly consisting of small rations in the event that finding his opponent took longer than expected, along with a compass for easier navigation; all of which had been placed in a leather sack slung over his shoulder.

Upon reaching the town's exit, he encountered Cheney of all people, standing in his way.

…..

Bowen strolled towards the town gate, his iron helm along with the metal pieces of his Fighter outfit reflecting gleaming under the light cast from streetlamps along his path. He looked up at the stone archway that comprised the town gate, the lanterns hanging from either side giving the Hume a clear view of the Hume Hunter leaning against its rocky exterior.

Cheney looked up at Bowen, arms crossed in front of him and voice primarily devoid of emotion.

"I knew you would go after it."

Bowen made no motion to answer him, not even a slight parting of his lips. Cheney, undaunted by his former comrade's lack of response, continued, easing off the gate and standing straight.

"Figures. You would have nothing to say, would you?"

"What I choose to do is none of your concern." Bowen spoke just as emotionlessly, deciding to speak. Cheney's voice rose a bit, becoming more authoritative.

"It's my concern when it involves the lives of my friends."

"Do you see any of them here?" Bowen interrupted, retaining his calm demeanor and catching the Hunter slightly off guard. "I have decided to take care of this by myself. This burden is mine to bear alone." He removed his Ebon Blade from his sheath; its midnight steel gleaming from the waxing moon's light, before pointing the tip in Cheney's direction. "Now step aside, or I will force you to."

The two men paused for a moment, neither of their cold stares giving way to the other. They stayed like this for a few seconds, a small gust blowing around them and ruffling any loose clothing, until Cheney spoke.

"Is this for revenge…?" The Hunter would regret asking that question as he spied a single tear escape Bowen's left eye, just as the Fighter responded in the same emotionless, steady voice he had before.

"It's to finish what my wife had started."

Cheney continued to stare him down, discontent with his answer, but with the knowledge that he would not receive a better one. He stepped to the left, walking around the Fighter, then whispered.

"Go."

….

A sudden noise behind him brought Bowen out of his thoughts and alerted him to a presence behind him. He spun around, right hand instinctively finding its way to his sheathed blade's handle, just as a Dreamhare bounded out from a bush in the sound's location. The rabbit-like animal eyed the Fighter poised for attack, its wide eyes holding an innocent, curious glance. The Hume's muscles relaxed and he stood straight, the hare bounding away into the deeper recesses of the forest.

It was at this time that Bowen realized how anxious he was. He breathed out a sigh of relief, grateful that it turned out to be a docile creature. Wasting precious energy on a more vicious forest denizen might prove fatal once he found Klesta.

Gathering himself, he began walking westward in hopes of finding a suitable spot for relaxation before his confrontation. The moon was bright enough to provide light as he made his way deeper into the wood, revealing the famous green-hued bark of the trees, though occasionally it would dim as darkened, thundering clouds passed in front of it. Even at this time of night, the forest was still very alive, if his earlier encounter with the Dreamhare was any indication. Various insects chirped in the distance, and smaller forest animals native to the region scurried to escape from the man's path.

A few more minutes walking at this leisurely pace brought Bowen to a destination he had more than hoped for. He stepped out from behind the tree line, brushing back some of the vines hanging in his way, and laid eyes on the sight before him.

A large pool of water, around thirty feet in diameter, rested in a small grove, surrounded on all sides by large, branching trees. The moon's light cascaded fully down through the wide opening in the forest canopy, presenting the body of liquid with an ethereal glow, as if it were some sort of holy water. What was so grand was not so much the area itself, but its population. Fireflies, hundreds of fireflies, their tails glowing and dimming in rhythm, rested on or flew just above the surface of the water, climbing higher and completely illuminating the entire area.

Bowen, looking around in wonder at the sight, stepped forward, sliding down a hill of sand and onto the pool's bank. He had known the Jadewood was famous for its hidden, lush freshwater pools, but to truly appreciate its beauty, one absolutely had to see it with his own eyes.

He knelt down beside the edge of the water, scooping some of the liquid up with his hands and splashing it onto his face. Shaking his head vigorously like a dog eliminating excess moisture, he cupped his palms once more, drawing in more of the liquid. Even at night, its clearness gave the sense of able consumption, and he thirstily downed the contents of his hands.

CAWWW!

Bowen's cupped hands parted, causing the remaining water to plummet back into the pool, and he instantly reached for his blade as he jumped to his feet. His eyes shifted from left to right periodically. He wasn't sure exactly which direction the call had come from, but he was sure it was definitely the call of some bird, and a large one at that.

A second larger, more opaque thundercloud passed in front of the moon, blocking most of its direct light on the pool, causing the area to grow dim, though not completely devoid of visibility. At the same time, the Hume could hear a low rumbling in the distance, along with the flapping wings of flocks of smaller birds taking to the air.

The rumbling gradually grew louder with each passing second, and Bowen's blade leapt out of its sheath, the man himself holding his ground and staring into the dark recesses of the forest on the far side of the forest pool.

Whether it was his fear or his burning ambition was realized as Klesta stepped foot into the small clearing was difficult to tell. The small grin following a grimace as he laid eyes on the gargantuan, feathered creature suggested both.

"It's been far too long since that day, Klesta." He spoke aloud to the beast, which seemed to pay the Fighter no mind. He took note of the creature's left wing, which having been encased in stone by Vili's rockseal technique earlier that day, was now completely free of any traces of the spell's stone encasement. "What manner of phenomenon healed your petrified arm?"

The Crushatrice, even though staring directly in Bowen's direction and hearing the voice of the man, continued to ignore him, opting rather to begin walking to its right along the pool's sandy bank, the ground reverberating with each step.

"Answer me, foul beast!" He yelled in hopes of garnering its attention. As it ignored his calls, he gripped his blade tighter, then on impulse alone, Aura gathered in his legs, he crouched down, then exploded into motion.

He dashed across the diameter of the pool, his legs rapidly pumping in and out of the shallow water as he made a bee line directly at Klesta. His Ebon blade was gripped firmly in his right hand. He kept his body low, hoping to streamline himself as much as possible. Upon reaching the bird, without losing momentum he leapt high into the air, hurtling towards Klesta exposed side, his blade now brought around to slash.

In response, without even glancing in the Fighter's direction, Klesta's swung its tail to intercept him. Bowen saw the attack coming in time and, knowing he couldn't dodge in midair opted for a different option.

"Backdraft."

In the split seconds before the beast's tail would reach his side, a fire ignited around the Hume, completely wreathing around his form like a force field. The tail collided into him, inciting an explosion that sent Bowen rocketing back towards the pool. He crashed into its surface, rolling along its shallow floor while simultaneously quenching the flames that surrounded him.

He raised himself from the water, staring at Klesta, who desperately swung its tail horizontally in an attempt to rid itself of the flames that coated the appendage. The beast, now infuriated and clearly motivated to participate, released a roar at the Fighter.

Bowen gathered his bearings, then leaped into the air, landing in a heavy crouch just before the beast, water from his time in the pool pouring off his form. Klesta raised its right claw and swung at the man, its nails as sharp as any blade. The Hume darted to the left, ducking in time so that the nail closest to him grazed the top of his helmet, leaving a scratch along its surface. The Crushatrice stepped forward, lifting its right foot in an attempt to stomp the man out, though a back step by Bowen brought him out of harm's way, near the edge of the pool. Klesta immediately swung with its left claw this time, and Bowen gathered his Aura before leaping into the air.

To the fowl's frustration, he landed right on the beast's narrow beak, though leapt to the left again as its claws closed in on him. He spun dexterously in the air, landing on the shaft of one of the surrounding trees. Gravity wouldn't allow him to hold that position for long, and within the same moment, he pushed off forcefully, rocketing towards Klesta's position with the speed of an arrow, the bark splintering from the blast-off point.

The bird hadn't even the time to react, Bowen gathering Aura quickly to his arms in the split second the flight consumed. As he reached the beast, he slashed, the blade producing an impact shockwave the size and magnitude of its target.

"Rush."

Klesta cried out as the shockwave knocked it to its own left, causing it to tumble over, the damage from the attack apparent on some of its surface feathers. Bowen landed in a disorderly roll ending face down in the grass, dropping his blade in the process. The entire attack had been an improvisation on his part, one he was glad had paid off as he wearily stood to his feet, fatigue noticeable in his face and movements.

Then, his eyes widened suddenly, as he noticed that he couldn't lift his right arm. He looked down to it, seeing a couple small bumps along the lining of his skin around his wrist and upper arm. It was then that he quickly surmised that the last attack had broken his arm. There was no break in the skin, and he hoped that there would be no internal bleeding. He knew, though, that he hadn't the time or expertise to measure how serious the fracture was as Klesta stood on its two feet, having regained itself.

Whether it had been the force of his attack or the strength of the bird's hide, he couldn't tell, and he cursed inwardly upon realization that this development could spell the end for him, and his fight had only just begun.

Klesta stalked closer, step by step, the ground reverberating with each one.

Bowen stared into the beast's eyes, the myriad of fireflies around them illuminating the entire area, most noticeably the prideful, triumphant look in its pupils. A look of victory, clearly showing its own knowledge that it had bested him once again.

The Fighter gritted his teeth, raised his blade in defiance with his left arm, and closed his eyes momentarily, wondering offhandedly if this was what Friese looked like when Klesta had slain her.

"I was not aware that House Bowen's numbers had dwindled to one."

Bowen's eyes shot open, and Klesta stopped in its tracks. He turned to the source of the familiar voice, on the far side of the pool, and laid eyes on the familiar faces lined up along the bank.

Luso stood, arms crossed and grinning broadly. On either side of him stood Veis and Vili, both sisters moving their bow from their shoulders. Loa unstrapped her Vigilante from her back, swinging it around to her front. Tweigel simply stared back at Bowen.

Lastly, he laid eyes on Cheney Galliformes, who gave him a slightly apologetic look.

"W-What…all of you? Even you Cheney?" Bowen began, at a loss for words. "How…how did you all find me?"

"With all the noise you were making, it wasn't the most difficult task." Luso responded jokingly, retrieving his Atmos blade from its sheath. He made a gesture towards the Viera sisters, hinting that their heightened sense of hearing had allowed them to locate his position.

"We fight together, strike together as one." Tweigel continued. "Did we not swear that after what happened to Friese?"

"This is different!" Bowen countered. "I have decided that I will no longer put my teammates in harm's way like that, ever again."

"You fool." Loa spoke authoritatively, surprising everyone present with her words of choice. "Are we not House Bowen!" She allowed him time to answer, to which he replied with a nod. She smiled, then spoke in a more endearing voice. "Whether we live or die, we do it with you!"

"We will follow you to the bottom of the underworld if we must." Tweigel added.

"Whoa whoa." Luso commented, staring at Tweigel, and twirling the blade around dexterously in his hands. "You guys will have to talk about the afterlife some other time. As far as I'm concerned, we're all beating this thing, and we're coming out of it alive."

Bowen, along with the rest of the party, smirked.

"Well said, Luso Clemens."

Klesta, having stood still for long enough, charged at Bowen's position, releasing a haunting cry as it grew closer. Luso, Veis, and Vili bolted into action, leaping from their position on the pool's bank, into the air. While airborne, Veis and Vili both placed an arrow in their bow, drew the string back, and let the projectile fly. At the same time, Aura gathered at the tip of Luso's Atmos blade, and he swung the blade in a downward arc, releasing a crescent shaped blast of energy and air directly at the beast. The arrows collided with the fowl just as he neared Bowen's location, hitting his left side and causing it to cry out. Luso's air render added to it, exploding in the same place that the arrows had hit and throwing the beast slightly off balance. The three landed in the middle of the pool, water splashing into the air as their feet hit the bottom.

Bowen turned his attention from them, looking above as he heard the sound of flapping near him. Loa landed right in front of him, Vigilante held out in front. Vili, Veis and Luso climbed out of the pool with ease and scrambled from the beach onto the grass, also joining the Gria.

"What happened with his left wing?" Vili queried as the bird began to regain its footing. "I thought I petrified it earlier today."

"You did." Loa responded. "Cockatrice and their variants carry in their breath a unique chemical that can cause petrification. Most people aren't aware that their saliva contains a separate chemical that can dissolve petrification."

"So it drooled on itself?" Luso asked.

"In laymen's terms, yes." She admitted. "Though luckily Tweigel was prepared for this." She paused, watching as Klesta geared up for another charge. "We just have to keep it still long enough."

"Leave that to us." Luso, Veis, and Vili called out in unison, charging towards Klesta. They dashed with the utmost speed, the Viera born with their natural quickness, Luso channeling Mist into his legs.

As they sped towards him, Klesta let out a curt roar before spreading its legs apart. It lowered itself as best it could, then opened its great beak, sucking in the surrounding air. Veis almost immediately recognized the beast's odd stance. Her eyes widened and she yelled to the two adolescents slightly behind her.

"Get out of the way!"

Klesta paused for a moment, then exhaled. Veis, moments before this happened, bunched her legs, then leapt, soaring into the air. Her sister Vili, managed to grab Luso by the waist, and, not having the time to execute a high jump, leaped as best she could after her sister, Luso's added weight not helping matters.

Her timing proved successful enough, and the gray colored blast of air that escaped the bird's maw sailed just underneath her, so close that she could feel it passing underneath her feet. The bird's breath dissipated just as a second after it had left its mouth, and the still airborne trio looked down. The patch of grass in front of Klesta, extending around twenty feet, was coated in a solid sheet of grey.

A solid sheet of stone.

Veis and Vili touched down behind the fowl, the latter setting Luso down, who he uttered a small word of thanks to.

Across the pool, Tweigel conversed with Cheney.

"In order for this to work, we'll have to prevent Klesta from moving for just a little while." The Nu Mou stated, unwrapping the cloth from the object he had been holding as he and Cheney watched Luso, Veis, and Vili dodge and weave between Klesta' relentless attacks.

"Vili's rockseal technique might be able to seal its legs." The Hunter suggested, before he sighed in realization. "But I'm sure the beast's saliva could dissolve it. Wait, there's always the Shadowbind technique. If both of them work together, it may be enough to hold it down."

"Look how dark it is, though." Tweigel responded. "At this time of night, we'd never get a suitable shadow." Cheney sighed once more, placing a pondering hand to his chin. After a few seconds, a smirk graced his features.

"You're right…so we'll just have to make one." He faced his head to Luso's direction, cupped his hands around his mouth, and called out. "Luso! Make some distance and start charging up an Air Render. Don't release it though."

The boy back stepped, successfully dodging as Klesta plunged its claws into the ground in front of him. He held a curious glance at Cheney's orders, though figured that he had a plan. He jumped back, well out of the range of the bird, and as per request, held his blade out in front, parallel to the ground.

A light, its hue a mixture of ivory and blue, began to glow along the length of the blade, growing with each second. The boy placed a second hand on the blade's handle as it grew, struggling to hold the shining power that was contained within its steel. The light spread over the entire clearing, scaring away the lightning bugs that frequented the pool's waters and providing clear visibility to the group.

Klesta stopped moving at that moment, staring curiously at the light building up dozens of feet away. Veis and Vili also mimicked the bird's action, until a few moments later Veis's eyes open wide in realization. Her head snapped back at Klesta's direction, looking specifically at his feet.

A shadow.

"Vili." She spoke, catching her sister's attention. The younger Viera also caught wind of the plan within seconds, mentally praising Cheney for his quick thinking.

Both sisters blasted off from their positions, one behind the other, then forked as they reached the bird, skidding to a halt diagonally behind on either side of the beast. They both began to quickly chant in unison under their breath, giving as little time as possible for the bird to make sense of the situation.

"Shifting shadows, howling wind, lord of nature. Reach out your hand, great Exodus, and bind those that would escape from your wrath!" They spoke so quickly, yet so cleanly, in perfect unison as if it had been practiced a thousand times. Each girl then slammed her both hands downward, onto the surface of Klesta's shadow, then called out simultaneously. "Shadowbind!"

Klesta, seeing them in the corner of his eye, attempted to reach at Vili. For some reason though, its body wouldn't respond. In fact, it wasn't just his claw. His entire body would not listen to the commands of his brain.

"Keep it up, all three of you!" Cheney called out to them.

"Using the light of Luso's Aura to create a shadow for the Viera to bind. Brilliant idea, Cheney." Tweigel spoke aloud. "Quickly now, while it is still immobile. We'll need your bowmanship." The Nu Mou handed him the vile, Cheney grasping it in his gloved right hand. The hunter took aim upon on the Crushatrice, then with all his might he lobbed the vile, the glass object flying up and over the lake.

The moment, Cheney released it from his hands, he instantly readied his bow and secured an arrow in its string. He pulled it back, and trained his eye on the now descending vile. He knew he had only one shot at this, and he planned to make it count. He released his fingers, the string snapping back as the arrow let loose, hurtling towards the area just above Klesta's head.

The timing was perfect. Just as the vile was over Klesta's form, Cheney's arrow pierced it. The glass broke upon impact, splintering into hundreds of individual pieces. The contents of the glass as well, losing their support, splattered all over the bird of prey. Klesta's top half was completely soaked with the liquid-type substance while his bottom half remained dry, though Tweigel knew that would be enough.

"I'm not sure how much longer we can hold him." Vili called out, the bird's body already beginning to twitch as the two sisters struggled to keep hold of his shadow.

"Yeah, I'm starting to lose control on this thing too." Luso added, sweat pouring off of him, gripping the charged blade with all his might.

"It's alright now, child. You three have done your part. The rest is up to Bowen." Tweigel responded. The Fighter in question looked over to his Illusionist companion, his face wholly confused while his arm hung limp. Seeing his face, Tweigel decided to elaborate. "Bowen, that vile we just used was Clear Sap. Now that Klesta's feathers are covered in it, he'll no longer be able to fly away." He saw Bowen's face light up, and he continued. "In addition, that sap has one other property. It's highly flammable. That's where you come in."

Bowen's eyes widened.

"Do you mean…?"

"Yes." The Nu Mou responded. "Right now, Klesta's one large explosion waiting to happen. All you have to do is light the fuse." Both men smiled at each other, before Bowen directed his gaze at the beast.

The Viera and Luso, hearing this, looked at each other, all nodding in unison. The trio simultaneously counted down from three, and as they hit the final number, Veis and Vili retracted their hands from Klesta's shadow, straightening their legs into a high jump that would put them out of harm's way. At that moment, Luso raised his blade above his head, and in the same fluid motion swung it downward. A crescent shaped shockwave, the size of its intended target and a mixture of pure white energy and air, escaped from its length, tearing through the air towards the beast.

Klesta regained control over its body at that instant, squawking loudly as the wave of air and energy collided into its body. Luso collapsed to the ground, breathing heavily after having put all of his aura into the attack. The bird stumbled over from the force.

Bowen seized the opportunity.

Just like before, a fire ignited around his body, encompassing him like a flaming aura. He raised his Ebon Blade into the air with his remaining arm, and charged; charged with all the left in his body; charged as fast as his legs would humanly allow; charged with the thought that he would finally have his peace. He roared until his voice broke. Klesta, too disoriented from Luso's attack, failed to see the man charging.

He bunched his legs, leapt into the air, and as his body reached the bird's own, he swung.

"For Friese!"

The fowl let out an unearthly scream, the clear sap feeding the flames that spread all around its body, enveloping it in an explosion that rivaled any other. Feathers, skin, flesh; all disintegrated in an instant from the power of the explosion, which sent Bowen flying back in the direction he came from, skidding on his back to a halt a dozen feet away.

Then half a minute after, a rain drop fell on Loa's nose, and she looked up to the sky, which had, since the fight began, grown to be enshrouded in cloud cover. More droplets followed, slowly but surely evolving into a downpour. Any remaining fireflies left near the pool scattered into the woods for cover.

The rain flooded out the excess fire covering Klesta, which allowed the group to see the burned monstrosity that had developed. The beast was completely black now, its skin and feathers charred beyond recognition, its eyeballs evaporated. Smoke wafted from the carcass, only to be drowned out by the pouring water.

Complete and utter silence followed, broken only by the rain itself. And then, to match the rain…

The members of House Bowen, both present and former, cried.

Tweigel and Loa cried, finally having bested the beast that had robbed of their comrade.

Cheney looked the other way, turning towards the forest so that no one could see.

….

"Friese, what is this?" Bowen queried, holding up a scarf whose ends lay improperly knitted in his hand. The person in question, a woman with shoulder length hair the hue of dandelions, outfitted in an iron breastplate, sand colored woven pants, and black boots, turned to face him. Two Knightswords hung at her right hip.

"Oh, that thing?" She replied. "It was starting to get cold, so I tried my hand at knitting. We've been pretty busy though, so I haven't had time to work on it. I'll finish it someday."

…..

"Friese, did you finish gathering the food we'll need for our trip?" Bowen asked, as he, his wife, Loa, Tweigel, and Cheney all made their way towards the Inn after a long day's work.

The woman looked up at the sky, a pondering look on her face, before she smiled apologetically in his direction.

"Oh, I suppose I must have forgotten. We've just been pretty busy lately. I'll go get them now." She began to run back the other way, when she paused, turning back to him. "What was it again that we needed?"

Tweigel, Loa, and Cheney laughed under the breath, with Bowen giving them an annoyed look. He sighed, walking towards her as the other three promised to meet them at the Inn.

He strolled past her, grabbing her hand in the process, and holding it gently.

"Come on. I'll go with you."

Lastly, Bowen wept for his wife, bitterly. His grip loosened, and his Ebon blade plummeted, hitting the grass below with a muffled thump.

With a low, hushed voice and small smile, tears still streaming, he whispered.

"You never could finish anything you started, could you."

Thunder roared in the distance, and the rain continued to plummet on the scene. Luso Clemens stared up into the sky, lying flat on his back, devoid of the energy to move otherwise, and he himself began to cry.

For his mother.

For his father.

For his Grandfather.

And for his sister, Frimelda.

Victory, but far from a joyous occasion…


(End Chapter Thirty Eight)

Character Corner

(Veis)

Job: Assassin/Sniper

Race: Viera

Hair Color: White

Eye Color: Emerald

Skin/Fur Color: Brown

(Description)

A Viera hailing from a country outside of Loar, she and her sister Vili have left their homeland and traversed Loar in search of House Bowen, hoping to join their ranks while learning new styles and methods in Jylland. She and Vili were raised at the family's home by their grandmother, and taught the arts of the Assassin.

"I understand your earlier position, but if it is merely assisting you in a hunt, my sister and I would be more than happy to oblige. We did not travel all this way to be sent back empty handed."

Veis, requesting to join the hunt for Klesta

(Likes and Dislikes)

Likes: Meditation, Training

Favorite Food and Drink: Carrots, Viera Mist

Hates: Preying on the weak

Dreams: To become a well-known Assassin

Favorite Color: Green

(Trivia)

-Veis from FFTA2: Grimoire of the Rift makes an appearance in this story, reprising her role of seeking out House Bowen, though with a few changes.


Ok, that turned out sort of how I wanted it to, so I'm marginally pleased with it. Sorry if that fight lasted too long for any of you. Anyway, next chapter wraps up the arc as a whole, and only a few chapters after that until we reach Grazton.

Until next time!