CHAPTER 0

Darkness.

Darkness in every direction.

A landscape littered with rubble that simply hung in empty space.

No movement.

No escape.

Mortal life had refused to endure this nightmarish existence.

However, one was rising to accept the intolerable challenge. Endurance was a matter of willpower, was it not?

The sanctuary's eternal guardian prowled its domain with watchful eyes. Long since had those red orbs seen the intruder. It continued its everlasting patrol, circling the foreign one from high above.

The intruder just stared. Off into the infinite dusk the guardian called home. Eyes colder than the dark void surveyed all they perceived. Nothing was truly sacred here. Not anymore. Everything bore signs of damage. Of irrevocable erosion.

It was… disgusting. The only beauty left amongst the ruin belonged to the guardian.

Deep down, they were so similar, the guardian and the intruder. Masters of their domain. Loners cast out by those unappreciative. Persecuted for unjust reasons, outside of acceptable control. Ultimately brought together. Surely, fate was silently at work here.

And yet… the guardian had refused to empathise. It saw the intruder as nothing more than that; an alien in its territory. It had allowed the intruder's incessant presence long enough to converse. But simple words meant nothing. Action was the one true validation of spirit.

But the intruder knew that no such action was plausible. Isolation was enemy to standard channels here, one that could not be abolished. Neither force of hand, nor sleight of a sharp tongue were sufficient for change. How cruel the irony of the predicament. Laughable in retrospect, even.

It seemed the guardian was not one who would trust lightly something as fragile as words. Then again, the foreign one was an intruder. The guardian's hesitance was noted, without understanding directly. The desire to maintain such complete isolation… a curious thing, it was. If that were the case, the guardian would be verified as being remarkably confident in its abilities.

Such tasks it performed on a momentary basis… One had to marvel at the rationale or reasoning that prompted the guardian to uphold its duty.

That line of thought would not provide a valuable answer, though. Not at the present. More pressing questions were blooming. Ones that required answers to eradicate, before they bred more infernal distractions. Simplicity dictated a focused mind. Clarity would be the saviour.

And so the intruder continued to stare. Off into the endless dormancy.

First attempts at communication had failed. Another method was required.

But what? …And how?


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