It feels so lonely here now… there are no loud yells of hunger pains or sounds of clashing steel as warriors train. No proud declarations of the dreams of future Hokage's or Pirate Kings, no inspiring words from a kind and noble saiyan teaching his young princess to be stronger, no determined yells as Claymores and Soul Reapers spar to increase their strength. Nothing but cold, unforgiving silence. This castle that was once my home, now feels more like my tomb.
END OF DAYS
So it Ends
SO IT BEGINS AGAIN
"Owowowowowowowow!" Shantella wailed as Winry worked over her.
"Sorry, this is always the worst of it, having to connect the nerves in your shoulder to the automail. I still don't know though, whether or not this special automail is going to be able to stand saiyan level combat. There, that should do it," Winry sighed wiping the sweat from her brow, "of course it'll take about a year for your body to adjust to the automail, so don't do anything crazy before then."
"Thank you Winry," Shantella said sadly as she pulled her coat back on. She noticed a quick movement out of the corner of her eye and knew that Mizore had been watching. It was true that Mizore's attack had cost Shantella her left arm, but it wasn't Mizore who had been in control when it happened. She needed to talk to the snow fairy. "Where is Flora at?"
"She's resting in her room. She's still exhausted from saving our skins that day."
"To think it's already been a month. Two months ago I would have been grateful for the silence," Renee sighed, "but now… it feels so lonely."
"Yeah," Silphia declared walking out of the room, "I'm going out for some air."
"I'll join you," Shantella declared following Silphia out.
"The good news," Valeria declared, "is that Corruption likely doesn't realize that we survived that attack. He'll assume we're dead."
"Not that it makes a difference. There's no way we can stop him now," Isabella sighed, "we may still be alive, but without the knights, we may as well have died."
"We can't think like that. We're alive and that's what matters now. We have to carry on, for the sake of everyone we lost," Kakashi declared calmly. He hesitated for a moment, then reached into his pack and pulled out his copy of make-out paradise. Flipping it open to the page he was on, he pulled out his book mark, a photograph of him, Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura from just after they had become a team. "We can't lose hope, there has to be a way."
"At any rate, there is little we can do until both Shantella and Flora are ready again," Teresa declared, "we have one year until Shantella's automail is ready for full, hand to hand combat. I suggest we make use of that time and prepare for the battles that lie ahead."
"I agree, we need to start training. We've still got this place, and everything that comes with it. Let's take advantage of it," Renee declared, "in one year, we'll take Corruption down and avenge our comrades… and our families."
"I couldn't agree more," Miria declared as all the warriors present nodded their agreement.
Shantella and Silphia were wandering towards a castle balcony. When they arrived, they were surprised to discover two young girls sitting on the balcony looking out at the ghost town. One was Mizore Shirayuki, the other, Aliasse, who was wearing a much to large red cloak over her shoulders and had a small doll clutched in her arms.
Cue Background Music: Rain (Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood)
"Not a bad view, eh?" Shantella asked, "this was always my favorite spot to come when I needed to clear my head. I'd stand up here for hours and just watch my town and my people go about their lives. It always made me so happy… but now, it almost feels sad." Ali sobbed quietly while Mizore didn't make a sound. Smiling a little, Shantella walked in front of Mizore and knelt down. The snow fairy quickly lowered her gaze so that she wasn't looking into her eyes, but Shantella put a gentle hand under her chin and forced her head up. "Stop it Mizore, you've got enough to be sad about now, you don't have to blame yourself for something that wasn't your fault." Mizore sobbed and closed her eyes as her own tears began to flow.
"They're all gone. All of my friends, Tsukune and Moka, Kurumu, Yukari… all of them! I'm… I'm alone again," the young snow fairy wailed. She stopped wailing as Shantella suddenly pulled her into a tight hug.
"But you're not… none of us are alone now. We've all got each other. I know how much you're hurting now. We all loved them, all of them, and now they're gone, but they're still with us. They're watching us now. That's why… we're going to keep fighting. We won't let them down," Shantella whispered gently as Mizore kept crying but threw her arms around the older princess, weeping into Shantella's metal arm. Ali watched sadly from the corner of her eye until Silphia wrapped her arms around the young Valkyrur from behind.
"That goes for you too, Squirt," Silphia said smiling as she put her cheek against Ali's, "now come on, let's see a smile." Ali hesitated for a moment, then smiled for the first time in over a month.
"Okay," she said quietly pulling out the string of the doll she was holding and pulling it over her neck, hiding the small doll gently beneath the cloak.
Flora tossed and turned in her bed as a vision of darkness passed in front of her eyes. At first, she could see nothing, but then… visions began to appear before her.
"Well done, Kakarot!" a saiyan with long spiky black hair declared standing over the bodies of several fallen alien life forms.
"What do you expect, Raditz?" A giant, bald saiyan shouted happily, "You're brother defeated Frieza! He's the most powerful saiyan who ever lived!"
"Cut the chatter you two, and get cleaning up this mess," Piccolo hissed angrily he was clad in saiyan armor and wore a red scouter over his left eye., "we've got work to do to get this planet ready to sell."
"Hey, who told you that you could give the orders, Namekian?" Goku's voice shouted angrily as he kicked Piccolo in the back of the head. He was clad in dark colored armor with a green scouter over his left eye.
"Forgive me, master Kakarot," Piccolo pleaded, "I meant no disrespect."
"Hey Ichigo, hurry up! We're gonna be late for school!" a young girl with spiky dark hair shouted angrily.
"Just calm down, Tatsuki. It's not like I need you to pick me up anyway, so what are you even doing here?" Ichigo shouted back.
"That's some good morning to be giving your girlfriend, pal, now get your butt in gear!"
"Fine! Mom, I'm heading out!" Ichigo shouted coming out the door. A woman came out the door as Ichigo and Tatsuki ran off. Flora could only assume that it was Ichigo's mother!
"Have a good day at school dear!" she shouted waving after her son.
"Hey mom, we're home!" Edward Elric shouted as he and a younger boy with the same color of hair burst into their home in Resembool. A beautiful woman with long brown hair greeted them.
"Dinner's almost ready boys," she called happily as her sons ran in
"Naruto! What are you doing! Stop it!" a man with dark hair with a single spiky ponytail sticking up from the back shouted angrily. A scar cut horizontally across his nose.
"How do you plan to stop me, Iruka?" an angry looking Naruto shouted back, a teenage girl clutched by the throat in his hand looking terrified, "if I want to kill, then I'm going to kill."
"Thank you, have a nice day!" a woman with short, green hair shouted from behind a bar as a man walked away, "Luffy! We need another barrel of juice!"
"Got it!" Luffy shouted running in. Aside from his straw hat, he didn't look anything like the pirate Flora knew.
"Clare, we need to slow down, the lower ranked warriors can't keep up!" a young woman with spiky hair shouted up to an annoyed looking Clare.
"Shut up, Pricilla! It's not like I need any of you anyway! I'm the number 2 warrior for a reason, I can handle this awakened being by myself!" Clare shouted back to her distressed companion.
"Grandpa, I'm off for school!" Yugi shouted running out the door, he looked normal, but there was no Millennium Puzzle around his neck.
"Have a good day at school, Yugi!" his grandfather shouted back as Yugi ran out the door.
Moka sat alone in the back of a large classroom as Kurumu, Yukari, and Tsukune busied themselves writing what appeared to be a newspaper. Flora couldn't help but notice how sad and alone she seemed.
Cue ending music: Shunkan Sentimental (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood)
Flora's eyes shot open and she bolted out of her bed, walking over to her window, she looked out to where the sun was beginning to rise over the mountains in the distance. She took a deep breath and looked out to the horizon, sighing happily. "They're alive."
BOOK OF THE SHADOWS