Hello! This is only a short piece and i'm sorry if it seems totally OOC. I saw the end of the game's cut scene and the last moments of Pious and the rest of the 'tomed' really got to me. This therefore is my take on the ending, all i've done is a little extension work, none of the characters belong to me they're property of the Game Cube!
Please let me know what you think!
It was over. She'd done it. Her and her Grandfather and all those other poor souls used over the centuries. They'd won. All the ancients were safely sealed back in their own dimension, defeated.
For the moment.
She sagged in relief.
A low groan snapped her out of her respite. Pious. It had to be. She bolted for the staff, ready, dear god so ready, to end him once and for all. As the bloodlust welled she bore down on the prone figure.
Her mouth fell open at the sight that met her eyes, all thoughts of vengeance draining like her strength. She let the staff clatter harmlessly to the floor.
Frightened, pained brown eyes stared up at her.
A mortal man once more.
A gasp tore itself from his lips, blood blooming at the corner of his mouth.
A mortally wounded man.
Regret filled her heart. She knelt down beside him, intending to offer what little comfort she could. Despite everything she was relieved to find her own humanity had not abandoned her as easily as her sanity.
He may have been the vessel, architect of the darkness' plan in their realm but now, now the vessel was empty, drained of the ancient poison, now she saw him as he had once been, the centurion from the tome.
Before the darkness had corrupted flesh from soul.
On instinct, overwhelming the darkness she'd witnessed , kindness welled in her, borne from a lifetime of knowing it. She reached out a hand to his face.
A growl rose from him, guttural and dangerous, before she could blink his hand snatched out, catching her arm. Returned to himself, his strength followed. Alex gasped in pain as his grip threatened to crush her wrist.
"W-where," his voice was harsh, ragged by pain., "Where is this? What of my emperor? Caesar? Was the task complete? What has happened? Tell ME!"
Shocked terror served to disconnect her already overworked brain from her mouth. Could it really be that he didn't remember? Her scant thoughts were cast aside as her arm was jerked roughly towards him. Violently coughing he dragged her close on sheer reflex, close enough to witness the fresh crimson petals fall from his lips.
When his eyes re-opened they were rolling in confusion. He looked at her again, squinting through fog, "R-Rovias?" Realisation began to clear his face. She nodded despite herself, half expecting him to attack.
"The Tome!" He breathed, gasping only half for air, "The accursed Tome! The ritual- those, those demons! It took place sure as any battle did it not? The years! Toil and sacrifices!" The horror was real in his eyes, words scrambling to be heard "I sought to do my duty, dear Minerva, only my duty to my lord." His face crumpled in painful anguish, "I failed, I betrayed Caesar, the gods themselves."
He looked so broken. His grip had slackened on her bruising arm. She decided to risk it. She touched his face. He flinched angrily. "Don't pity me Roivas. I am without enough honour."
Alex pulled back eyeing him sternly. This was too much and after everything she'd been through she was not about to let another condemned fade into torment.
Even if it was Pious.
She locked eyes with him, meaning every word she uttered;
"You were possessed centurion, used against your better will by gods. There is no shame in that, very few can withstand the might of the divine. As it was you fell in the line of duty, duty for your lord, Caesar. Take pride that he knew best of your loyalty." She softened, leaning closer, "You are mortal once again Pious, the world is safe from the darkness. Your valour is returned to you, to carry you to Elysium."
He finally relented, "few indeed withstand the will of the gods. You, Alexandra Roivas stand with titans-"
His voice cracked as his chest gave way to violent hacking tearing through his aching body. This time when she reached for him he didn't pull back
"I-I am, I, I would offer, for the shadow on your line. The death I brought." She felt the tears well, threatening to spill over onto his paling face,
It took almost every ounce of strength left in her but she nodded, accepting his apology, fighting her grief to whisper, "The vessel's curse, not your decree."
"And I regret it, all that came to pass, what I could see and not prevent, cowardice and slaughter, disloyalty and betrayal. For that I am sorry." His chest began to rattle, darker blood escaping in think blotches.
It was time.
"Rest warrior, your battle is fought, your soul victorious."
A strong hand tightened around her own, "Thank you."
He took another shuddering breath, chest seizing with pain as the hacking threatened to break his ribs. When it finally ended he was still.
She withdrew her hand from his limp hold, the reality of what had transpired sinking in. Another soul. Another life ruined by the tome. As she reached over him, tenderly closing the lifeless brown eyes , it dawned on her. Perhaps his was the worst fate borne. Immortal and powerless, watching his world crumble to dust whilst his hands ran with scarlet innocence.
She sat back on her haunches staring at the bloody corpse.
A body by her own hands.
So many people.
And yet all she saw before her now were the sheet stained remains of her beloved grandfather. Everything she'd been through this terrible night fell away from her as the grief she'd been damming back tidaled, crashing over her, drowning out all that surrounded.
Something somehow registered in her traumatised mind.
A hint of a whisper.
She looked up sharply through swimming eyes, mist engulfing her vision.
Startled she wiped her eyes hurriedly.
As her eyes focused her mouth fell open.
Before her stood a group of figures composed of warm, blue light. Their features sharpening as she stared in flat-out astonishment.
It was them.
All of them.
Everyone who had been cursed by the tome.
And they were smiling.
She began to shake her head. This had to be a dream. It couldn't be real. It just couldn't.
But she knew all their faces, each and everyone, knew their stories, their suffering, their deaths. And in the centre, besides Antony and Ellia stood one who was more familiar than all of them.
He stepped forwards glowing in spirituality, smiling in his familiar warmth,
"It is finally over my dear, the ancients plans are finished, for now at least. You have proven yourself an incredibly courageous young woman. Your mother and father would have been proud of you, just as I am. I'm sorry it had to be like this, it's not quite the inheritance I had in mind for you but there was so little time and so much to do."
"We owe you our freedom now, like the rest of the world, Thank you."
"Now be brave my dear and continue, don't worry about us, you have released us all."
The ethereal beings smiled in agreement, some nodding some bowing then slowly they began to fade, melting into the cosmos, crossing to another dimension.
"Goodbye Alex, I'm going to miss you"
His hand gently slid from hers, his apparition turning to stars as she watched.
She reached again for him hand empty but he was gone, safe among the stars, there to watch over her.
So there it was, finally over. They had truly won. The world was safe and the tome's pawns at peace at last.
She fought the urge to sink to her knees. No. She was a proud Roivas. She would stand tall, like her grandfather, like all those who came before.
She had seen beyond the veil of reality, she was a fool no longer. Alone in the world now she had the comfort of knowing that at least she had succeeded. That she had helped end two thousand years of plot and corruption. Humanity was safe.
And she would ensure it stayed that way.
So there we are! I hope you enjoyed it and I didn't take too many liberties! Please let me know what you thought good or bad, i'm always keen to hear constructive criticism! Thanks very much! :D