A/N: Sorry guys. I accidentally skipped out on a chapter when I was updating. to everyone who has come straight to chapter 23 I'd say please head back and read chapter 22 first. That's the one I missed putting up earlier today so yeah... go read that one first. To everyone else, enjoy~
"He's running on water?!" the loud moron yelped from somewhere to Kurogane's right as shining gold dust blew towards the doctor's feet from under the cloak where he knew the manju bun was hiding.
"No, there are rocks under the water," the kid pointed out, "the path the doctor took is shining." The meat bun hopped to the mage as he congratulated the thing on a job well done. Kurogane wondered where the creature had gotten the dust in the first place. He asked as much as the meatbun slid into his jacket. "What was that thing you threw at the doctor?"
"Syaoran asked Mokona to turn the fish scale from the last world into a shiny powder." It explained happily as it crawled its way up his sleeve and settled happily into the inside pocket of his coat.
"We should follow the doctor," the kid declared as he hopped onto the first stepping stone and began running over the stones to get to the other side. Sharing a look with the mage and the bespectacled girl, Kurogane followed right after, his companions right at his heels. The landlord and team of loud morons all jumped in behind them. They made it to the other side without any incidents, though he couldn't help but notice the disgusted looks some of the morons from the loud moron's group were shooting at his 'wife'. What did it matter how she dressed, anyway? Their looks seemed to be making the girl a little uncomfortable as though she regretted having come out the way she had, but one glower from the ninja had the morons all looking away in shame. The girl mouthed him a small thanks as they hurried along the snow to catch up with the brunette and the doctor.
The building above ground was nearly destroyed, nothing but dangerous ruins. It seemed as though the children were being kept in the underground rooms since the doctor's footsteps led down a half-destroyed stairway. It was comparatively darker underground, but some sort of glow seemed to come off the walls themselves, as though a fluorescent mold had begun to grow in places to provide some light.
The gold dust shone against the stone floor, reflecting off the walls in an eerie manner for quite some distance before they found the doctor's abandoned shoes. The bastard must have realized they could use the dust to follow him and taken off his shoes to sneak away. But even if his own footprints had stopped, he had still led them to the smudged prints of tiny feet trudging down the corridor. Only one set of footsteps led away from that spot.
Before Sakura could run back towards the corridor she had seen Xahra vanish into, the air before her started to shimmer as the golden-haired princess materialized before her. The sounds of the children trying to break down the ice continued coming from inside the hole in the wall, even as the princess approached her with a small smile on her face.
I brought the children from the village here three hundred years ago to save them from a disease that only attacked the children, the spirit said in a musical voice that seemed to echo all around her, I used your feather to cure them and keep them healthy until they were able to leave again. Now these children were brought here to dig out that very feather and I am unable to do anything to help them at all. I stayed here for all these years waiting for you to come and claim your feather, Princess Sakura.
"You know my name?" she gasped weakly.
I know much more, but there is not enough time. The princess warned, you must take the feather and return the children to their homes. And you must find your companion. Your friend is in danger.
"Xahra-san?" she asked, taking a step towards the exit to the room before a little girl crawled out of the hole and approached her with a chunk of ice that gave off an ethereal glow. In the middle of the ice was a pure white feather with red markings. Another memory.
"Is this yours?" the girl asked, offering her the feather encased in ice, which she hurriedly took with a nod.
Hurry, you must-
"Sakura!" she heard the worried voice of the doctor call her name as he raced towards her.
"Dr. Jekyll?" she turned around to face the man as he stopped a few feet away from her. His gaze drifted down to the ice in her arms and his eyes took on a hungry gleam that made the princess take a hesitant step back.
"What's the matter, Sakura?" he said, his voice sounding sincerely worried, though the hungry gleam remained in his eye. "I've been looking everywhere for you. Hurry up and come here so that we can leave. Walking around without your shoes on is going to make you sick."
"I-I…How do you know I'm not wearing my shoes?" she asked, trying to sound braver than she felt as her heart began to thunder inside her chest. The doctor looked at a loss for words for a moment, "Earlier, was it you that hurt Xahra-san?"
"I must say, you're still as annoying as your beloved Syaoran," Dr. Jekyll said, dropping the façade of the worried doctor completely as he began advancing towards her menacingly. "And don't worry about Xahra, Silver is making sure she'll be taken care of."
"The demon from Citadel?" she gasped in shock. "Why is she so interested in Xahra-san?"
"I think you should worry more about yourself, my dear," he said even as Sakura began to back away, "now how about you give me the feather and we all go happily on our way, hmm? Your friends don't know you're here, so it would be best if you did as I said and no harm will come to you. I only want the feather. That's why I kidnapped those children, you know, to help me dig it out. That hole is so small only children can go through and the ice that feather is encased in does not melt even in summer. I had no choice. So if you don't hand it over to me, I will be forced to take some very drastic measures with you."
Don't give it to him, warned the spirit. There is an exit on the other side of the room. Go that way.
"Thank you, Princess Emeraude," she said hastily as she turned on her heels and began racing in the direction the ghost had indicated, the chain clanking away on the floor behind her.
"Not so fast," something yanked on the chain and sent her tumbling to the floor, "are you hallucinating? I never hypnotized you, but no matter. I don't have time for your theatrics."
Sakura turned around to face the doctor, pushing away from the man as he advanced towards her with a predatory grin.
Maddy and Fai had split up from the others to follow the lone set of footsteps. The blond motioned for her to stop when they heard the sound of uneven footsteps coming in their direction. They only had to wait for half a minute before Xahra burst towards them. Tears streamed down her flushed face, her breath coming in uneven pants as she staggered towards them, nearly collapsing in Madiha's arms.
"Xahra, what happened?" Maddy asked her best friend as she cried hysterically. Unfortunately, the girl couldn't seem to form any proper words as she looked back the way she had come. Her blond companion was watching Xahra with a puzzled frown before his gaze drifted down the dark corridor.
"Do you sense something?" Maddy asked urgently as she tried to pacify her friend.
"No, it's nothing." He shook his head, though the frown was still firmly plastered in place for a few more seconds. Then he offered her a smile and hurried over to help support the nearly-limp Xahra, "we should get her outside."
"Her fever seems to have escalated." She said worriedly as Fai slung Xahra's arm around his shoulder, Maddy doing the same with her other arm.
"She has been outside in the cold for nearly a day." The blond pointed out softly.
"Something happened to her down here," she gasped when her hand brushed against the torn fabric of Xahra's dress and came away a little wet when it slide over her exposed back. "She's bleeding!" She exclaimed, making the move to set her down so that she could examine the injury but the magician stopped her.
"We should get her out first, Maddy-chan." He insisted, making Madiha vaguely wonder if maybe there was something he was not telling her. Deciding to listen to his advice for the time being, she readjusted her grip on the girl before they slowly made their way towards the place where they had split off from the others.
"Princess Sakura!" Syaoran cried, his blood boiling at the sight of the doctor standing above her. Her face was pale in fear but she still wore a determined scowl, clutching her feather close to her chest. It was encased in ice but she did not seem to be feeling the cold as her fingers nearly dug into the frozen liquid in an attempt to keep it close. The doctor held a knife to her throat, his eyes narrowed in a threatening manner at Syaoran.
"Come any closer and I slit this pretty little neck of hers." He warned, causing Syaoran to freeze right where he was. "It's not so hard, listening to orders from someone better than you, is it?" The doctor grinned in satisfaction, "once I have this feather, I'm going to use its power to take over the entire town- no, the entire country! With its power, I will be unstoppable. The princess was a fool to have used the feather's power to cure the children of their sickness three hundred years ago. She could have used it to expand her kingdom, but the foolish girl was content with playing nurse to all those brats."
"But the princess killed all the children…" the loud man, who was the leader of the home defense team, said with a puzzled frown. "And the king and queen died right after the princess gained the feather."
"If she had wanted to kill the children, she would never have had any use for rooms such as this one." Dr. Jekyll declared, gesturing to their surroundings. The floor was littered with old broken toys and swings for children. "She had everything for the children down here, so they wouldn't be miserable. A laughable notion when you think about having to spend your time in such a decrepit place."
"It's not like that," Sakura murmured as she stared at the empty space somewhere to their right. The look on her face was just like the one she got whenever she was conversing with a spirit. Perhaps…maybe she was talking to the princess's ghost? "But why didn't they return?" she questioned the empty space, confirming his suspicions even though no one else seemed to have made the connection yet.
"Who're you talking to?" Kurogane questioned, no doubt looking around for concealed opponents.
"I don't have time for your chit-chat with your hallucinations!" The doctor screamed impatiently as he raised the knife. Adrenaline rushed through Syaoran's veins, his body moving of its own accord even as the knife began to descend towards the princess. "Hand me the feather, you stubborn girl!"
"No!" Syaoran cried, everything moving in slow motion around him as he crossed the distance separating them, shielding Sakura's body with his own at the last possible moment. A sharp, piercing burn shot through his shoulder as the knife sliced through skin and muscles like butter. Gritting his teeth to keep the scream from escaping his lips, he tightened his hold on the princess, focusing his attention on her warm body in his arms as he tried to ignore the pain.
A loud, rumbling roar shook the building all around them, causing everyone to freeze in alarm.
"What is that?" the landlord frowned, looking around them with a frown.
"An earthquake?" the ninja hazarded a guess, though Syaoran's blood ran cold for a different reason. The mechanism holding the water…it was very old. Who was to say that it hadn't-the wall to their right burst, a torrent of water rapidly flooding the room.
"The device holding the water at bay!" declared the leader of the home defense team, "it must have broken!"
"Watch out!" warned the landlord, even as a part of the roof caved in, Syaoran jumping out of the way at the last possible moment with Sakura firmly wrapped in his arms as rocks fell where they had been only moments before. Looking behind them, he realized that they were trapped.
"Get the children out," he yelled across the rocks separating them from everyone else, even as his eyes hurriedly looked around for another escape route. "We'll look for another way." And then without waiting for a response, Syaoran searched for the telltale signs of a secret passage that was supposed to lead to the surface. He knew studying the plans of the castle would come in handy.
The ground shook beneath their feet as Fai helped Madiha carry Xahra towards the main corridor, a loud rumble accompanying the tremors as dust began to rain down on them from the roof.
"What's that?" the brunette questioned, looking around in alarm.
"It sounds like water." He replied, wordlessly urging the girl to hurry. He had no idea how he knew it, but the damn built to hold the water under the castle had just given way. If they did not hurry, the roof would cave in and Sakura and Syaoran would be separated from everyone else and- wait…no, he had no idea what was going on with everyone else. Why had he just thought about those two when it was obvious that-
"We're trapped!" Maddy yelled in panic as they came to a halt in front of a portion of the corridor that had caved in. Fai looked around for alternate routes to getting out but could find none.
"Could you use your magic to clear the way?" she asked, biting her lip in worry as she shook her head with an annoyed look, as though trying to get rid of an annoying fly that refused to leave her alone.
"I could but…I can't use my magic." He responded helplessly. Growling in annoyance, Maddy ducked out from under Xahra, leaving Fai to support the hysterical girl's weight as the raven-head mumbled incoherently. Grumbling to herself, the brunette crouched near the base of the cave-in.
"You know, if I end up blowing us up just because you refuse to use your magic to help us out," she warned angrily, "I am so coming back to haunt you till the day you die."
"Eh?" he cocked his head to the right in confusion.
"I keep on getting these...I don't even know what to call them but I get these weird symbols and the names of random elements and I don't even know what else in my head at the worst possible moments." She replied, frowning at the rocks blocking their way. "I'm not sure what they mean or if I should be putting any stock into what he used to tell me…but for now, I guess that just might be our best bet." She placed her hands on the stones and narrowed her eyes in concentration, "let's hope this works." She seemed to pray as Fai suddenly felt the gathering of a foreign energy underneath her palms.
This energy felt just like the one he had felt coming from her back in Citadel as she had struggled with those pieces of coal and twisted metal…was it possible that she was- the ground rumbled again, drawing Fai's attention to the roof cracking and giving way.
"Maddy-chan, watch out!" he cried, Xahra dropping from his grip even as he raced towards the brunette. He knew he would never make it in time as he saw amber eyes look up towards the falling rocks before her gaze shot towards him, pupils dilating in fear even as her body remained frozen in place. Too soon, this is too soon! His mind screamed at him, the distance between him and the brunette seemingly stretching out for miles, the rocks falling, falling, falling and then, suddenly, they were all suspended in mid-air, merely a foot away from Madiha as Fai finally reached her and pulled her body out of harm's way. In his haste to get her away, he didn't really see where he was grabbing her. Madiha's balance was completely thrown off and she ended up grabbing his hair to right herself.
"Owie… Leave the hair-pulling for the bedroom, Maddy-chan."The words were out of his mouth before he could stop them, but in hindsight, maybe it was a good thing since the moments it took for the girl to comprehend the meaning behind what he had said was all the time he had to conceal the pure terror he was sure she would have seen on his face otherwise.
"I'd have thanked you for saving my life," screeched the brunette as she stomped her foot in anger, "but you are just too…"
"Irresistible?" he waggled his brows suggestively.
"Infuriating!" she screamed before she saw something behind him and paled. "Xahra!" she cried, running towards the girl who now lay unmoving on the cold stone floor. Hurrying over towards her, he checked for a pulse, letting out a sigh of relief when he felt it beating strong underneath her skin.
"She's just unconscious." He assured her, frowning at the water that suddenly seemed to be flooding the corridor. Picking up the girl, he turned to Madiha, "I think you should try what you were doing again. It appears as though the mechanism holding back the water has given way. This whole building will flood in a matter of minutes. We need to get out as fast as possible."
Giving him a curt nod, Madiha returned to her spot next to the fallen rocks, her eyes closing in concentration once more as the foreign energy gathered underneath her hands. Fai's attention, however, was drawn towards the unconscious girl in his arms. The rocks had frozen in mid-air through magic moments before they could have crushed Madiha, yet he knew he had not used any. The power had come from Xahra and even now, he could feel it sluggishly coursing through her body, concentrating near her exposed back. He had never sensed anything extraordinary from her before, but now… she had magic. Xahra had magic that she had subconsciously used to protect her friend, though her body obviously was not used to the strain using magic put on it, since she had passed out. Although…maybe her fever had a hand in that too...but still, she was using it even now to heal her injury and slowly but surely, Fai could even feel the drop in her body temperature as the magic seemed to cure her of her disease as well…
Sakura followed after Syaoran as he hurriedly pulled her through the twisting tunnels. She wasn't sure why she never questioned him or why she put so much faith in him, but something deep inside her pushed her to believe in the boy. He had done so much for her. She had no idea where she might have been by now had he not been around to help her. She might never have regained her precious memories without him. She did not know why he was doing all that he was, but…she felt something like fondness for the boy developing in her heart, only this emotion was a lot more precious. Before she could think any further on it, though, she was being forced to a halt as the roof caved in in front of them.
"There's another passage, leading-"
"I won't let you get away this time!" the doctor's angry declaration cut off Syaoran's words, causing both teens to whirl around.
"Hime, head back the way we came and take a left, there's a passage that should lead you to the surface," Syaoran said, giving her a gentle push to one side as he took up a fighting stance. "I'll keep him distracted."
Sakura took a hesitant step away from him but felt her heart give a painful squeeze at the thought of having to leave him down there all alone. What if he didn't make it out?!
"No!" she cried, latching on to his arm, "I'm not leaving you here."
"But Sakura-hime…" he began, only to be interrupted by the manic-looking doctor once again as he began to advance towards them, knife raised and eyes completely crazed.
"That feather is mine! Now give it to me!" he screamed, rushing through the rising water towards them.
There is another passage back here! Emeraude's ghost said urgently as she pointed to the wall on Sakura's right. It can lead you to the surface.
Letting go of Syaoran, she hurriedly pushed against the wall, "Princess Emeraude said there is a door here." She told the brunette, the water waist deep around them by now. The doctor was nearly upon them and though the stone wall gave way just a little, it wasn't enough to open the path for them. Gently pushing Sakura aside, the boy threw a powerful kick at the wall, the structure giving way in a heartbeat. Before either of them could even yell out a warning, the water was suddenly rushing out into the passageway, dragging them both along with it even as Sakura heard the doctor's scream and the crashing stones behind them.
Kurogane wanted to turn around and help dig out the kid when the moron suggested it, but remembering the brunette's determination in the past worlds, he realized the kid might be long gone by the time they got through to the other side. It would be best to just get out and wait for those two there. He was determined enough to pull this thing off. Not to mention Kurogane had seen him memorize the layout of the entire castle, so he probably would find some other way out of the tunnels. Telling the moron as much, he helped the landlord and the others lead the children down the corridors.
A brilliant flash of blue lit up the corridor a little ways ahead of them before Fai and Madiha came tumbling into the main corridor, the former carrying an unconscious Xahra. The trio raced ahead of them as the water continued to climb higher. Helping the children get across the river using the stones took quite a while but they eventually managed. Once everyone had gotten across, they turned back to look at the castle. There was no sign of the kid or the princess and the loud moron suddenly started to care about their well-being as he worriedly claimed about them taking too long. Kurogane wasn't too worried, though, for he knew the kid would come through.
But as minutes seemed to tick by without any sign of them having made it out as the water in the river began to climb higher, slowly covering the stones, worry gnawed at his heart as he shot a glance towards the mage and the girl but they both were staring at the castle as though trying to get the kids to appear there through their willpower alone. The girl was seated on the ground, resting Xahra's head in her lap.
"Are you sure they will make it?" the loud moron asked for the hundredth time.
A loud splash answered the question for him as Kurogane's gaze fell on the sputtering forms of the kid and the princess. Both of them looked exhausted, though it was mainly the boy pulling the princess along and across the water.
"They made it!" Madiha cried happily from her friend's side, stating the obvious even as Kurogane offered the kid a hand to pull him out. They both shuddered violently as the winter air nipped at their exposed bodies, the wet clothes making it even worse. Shrugging off his coat, Kurogane draped it around the kids' shoulders.
"What happened to the doctor?" he questioned the kid.
"I'm n-not s-sure," he said through chattering teeth, "h-he didn't c-come af-ter us..."
"So he probably got buried under the castle, then…" frowned the mage.
"Pity."Madiha spat fiercely, not at all looking sorry that the man could be dead. "I would have liked to hit him in his stupid face for what he put everyone through. And whatever it was that he did to Xahra."
"H-He s-said," the princess hastened to correct the brunette, shivering just as badly as the kid, "th-that it w-was Sil-Silver th-that h-hurt her." Before Madiha could say something in response to that, however, the princess's attention was drawn to an empty space, her face taking on a look of something like relief before it turned to shock as the ice around the feather melted and it was absorbed by her body, the girl dropping like a sack of potatoes. A very wet sack of potatoes at that.
She woke up feeling warm and much lighter than she had felt ever before. A soft, tingling sensation flowed through her entire body, feeling a little strange but not as completely as alien as it should have felt. In fact, it felt more like a part of her that had been shut away for so long was suddenly free. It was a nice, fuzzy sort of feeling, all warm and comforting. Pushing off the covers from her body, she sat up in bed, looking around her in confusion for a minute as she tried to recall where she was. Maddy was asleep next to her bed, head resting on the sheets with her arms folded underneath to function as a makeshift pillow. Sakura was sleeping in her own bed, softly snoring away with Mokona bundled up right next to her face. She smiled softly at the peaceful image those two presented before turning her attention back to observing her surroundings.
After nearly another minute of thinking back and failing to remember what happened, everything slammed into her with the force of a speeding bullet train. Eyes going wide as dinner plates, she gingerly reached for her back with a shaky hand, her breath speeding up as her fingers touched the torn fabric of her dress. She remembered the blood boiling in her veins as her screams reverberated all around her while Silver stood watching over her writhing body.
"Xahra?" She heard Madiha mumble sleepily past the pounding of blood inside her ears. "Hey, Xahra, calm down."Maddy shot up, grabbing her by the arms to make the raven-head face her. "It's okay, you're safe now. We found you. It's alright."
"S-Silver…Silver was there!" she gasped shakily. "And she...she did something…"
"What did she do?" Madiha asked urgently.
"I don't know." She replied, an eerie sort of calm overcoming her. "She did something to my back."
"You were bleeding when we found you," the brunette nodded, looking somewhat pleased that her friend was not panicking anymore, "but your back was healed by the time we got you out of the castle. Dr. Jekyll was working with her." She added, "He hypnotized you to go to the castle with all the children. Probably because Silver asked him to do it."
"Maddy-san? Xahra-san?" Sakura chose that moment to wake up, rubbing sleepily at her eyes as Mokona hopped off the bed declaring it would fetch their male companions. The little critter was probably only pretending to be asleep the whole time.
"Morning, Sleeping Beauty." Maddy waved at the girl who worriedly bit her lip. "Something wrong?"
A knock sounded on their door before she could answer, Fai stepping in, followed by Syaoran and Kurogane, Mokona perched on the latter's shoulder as the door swung closed behind them.
"Mokona said all the girls were awake." Fai explained with a happy grin. "How are you feeling, Sakura-chan, Xahra-chan?"
"I'm good." Xahra said, giving them a thumbs-up while Syaoran hurried over to the princess's side.
"I'm okay, Fai-san," the girl nodded with a tiny smile before looking worriedly at Syaoran, "Before she gave me my feather, Princess Emeraude told me that people are spying on us and that only one of the watchers means us no harm. I need to speak with her again!"
"We should probably leave after that," Kurogane spoke up, "if we're being watched, it would be best to stay on the move."
"Yeah," Maddy agreed, "Silver managed to follow us here from Citadel, so that might be a good idea."
"Mokona, are there anymore of the princess's feathers in this world?" Syaoran turned to the dimension hopper.
"Mokona does not sense anything else." The creature replied with a tiny shake, its rabbit-like ears swinging this way and that.
"Then we should-" Syaoran started only to be cut off by the princess.
"Syaoran-kun, wait! The people of this country, they don't know the truth about what really happened three hundred years ago." Sakura said worriedly, "The princess asked me to tell them her tale."
"But we will be delayed that way." Kurogane pointed out.
"Not to mention they'll want to know how you know this story in the first place," Maddy pointed out. "Speaking of which…How do you know?"
"Sakura-hime can speak with the spirits of those who have passed away." Syaoran answered for the girl.
"Maybe we could write everything down for them in a letter and leave it with the book we borrowed from them," Fai suggested all of a sudden. "We are supposed to be researching old legends, as far as these people know. Syaoran-kun can read this world's language so he can write out the story as Sakura-chan tells it. Then we can pack our belongings and head out for the castle when no one else is looking."
"Why leave like thieves?" Kurogane grunted in distaste.
"Because then we can all appear dark and mysterious like Kuro-tan~" sang the magician in response, causing Sakura and Xahra to burst into laughter as the ninja began chasing after the blond, Syaoran looking on with an exasperated smile while Madiha could only shake her head at their antics.
Long after the sun had gone down and the travelers had left the world through the dimension hopper, a dark figure crawled out from underneath the decimated remains of the castle, heels clacking against the ground damped by the snow as a woman approached the place.
"You could have saved me, you know," the man grumbled as he climbed to his feet and brushed some dirt from his coat, although considering its torn and muddy state, the action was useless.
"I suppose I could have," the woman replied carelessly, picking at her sleeve, silver hair gleaming in what little light the moon could offer that night.
"And yet you let me nearly die in there." He complained angrily, shivering in the cold air, cursing rather explosively when he stubbed his toe on a rock.
"Easy there, Dr. Jekyll," the woman smirked, "Yell any louder and I'm sure the villagers will come running with their pitchforks and torches."
"So they got the feather after all." Dr. Jekyll said instead. "I suppose it could not be helped. Did you get what you wanted?"
"Yes," the woman smirked in satisfaction, waving her hand to open a slit in the very fabric of space and time, "although I must say, if you had not wasted your time monologing away, you might have actually gotten the feather this time around." Stepping inside, she continued, "But you've become rather fond of monologues, haven't you, Kyle? Did you give them a different name because you were afraid someone might remember?"
"Monologing is an art not many can appreciate," the man, now dubbed as Kyle, sniffed haughtily, "I was afraid they might remember and…" he paused, stepping through the rip to the other side and appearing in a high-ceilinged corridor, the roof held up by magnificent pillars carved out of black marble and inlaid with crimsons stones."I've always wanted to say my name was Dr. Jekyll. Has a nice ring to it, wouldn't you say?"
"Whatever you say, Rondart." Silver sighed with a shake of her head, "Whatever you say. I suppose it's time we reported to the Master and you can tell him all about how you let the feather get away, again!"
"Calm down, Silver," Kyle replied with a careless shrug of his shoulder, "So what if we didn't get the feather this time? There will be plenty of chances that have yet to come. Not to mention the fact that what cannot be obtained easily only increases its worth in the Master's eyes. And besides, I'm sure he already has the next move planned out for the witch. After all, things are going to be very different this time."
"Yes," the demon nodded, her gaze flickering towards a pair of closed doors for the briefest of moments before they walked past it, "there is also that third Chess Master just waiting for a chance to make a move."
A/N: And with this chapter, I pronounce Book I finished! *grins*
Any guesses on who this third Chess Master could be? And why is Silver so interested in Xahra? Will Maddy ever be able to get Fai to stop flirting with her? And will Kuro survive the surprises awaiting him in the next world?