Title: Beyond the Twisted World Tree

Rating: T

Setting: The story begins several years after the events of Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria.

Disclaimer: Sadly, I don't own Valkyrie Profile.


Chapter One

Premonitions

The screaming laughter of a maniac rang out in the dark night.

The woman clad in purple armor skillfully wielded her pole arm as her raven hair danced against her face. Alexandria met the weapon with her rapier. One swung at the other, while her partner parried every attack directed at her.

Together they fought, neither woman holding back her rage.

Alexandria lunged at the warrior. Sensing her vulnerability, the warrior dematerialized into a pink orb, floating to the top of the stairs. Angrily, Alexandria ran up the stairs as the enemy ran down to meet her. Alexandria lunged, throwing her sword forward. To her amazement and horror, metal slid through flesh. The rapier pierced deep into the warrior's side. The armored woman's knees sagged as Alexandria hesitantly withdrew her sword.

"Now!" came a cry from behind a pillar.

A sorcerer materialized and cast a spell toward them as another sorcerer behind them did the same. The spells met in their battlefield, casting a circle on the ground beneath them. A violent blue light erupted around the warriors. Confused, Alexandria looked at the warrior, to see the image of a woman superimposed in a purple light behind her.

At that moment, something deep within Alexandria became aware of a horrifying change in her body. It was as though her insides were slipping away. Something was being stolen from her... something that was part of her very core.

"No!" Alexandria screamed as she shot up in bed. Beads of sweat trickled down her body, causing her nightgown to stick to her. Heavy pants escaped her lips as she focused on the room. "Oh," she gasped. "Another dream."

These dreams are going to be the death of me, she thought. They became more vivid every night. Sometimes they were recurring, sometimes they were different. But every time, the dreams seemed more and more real. It unnerved her, but Alexandria did not dare to tell a soul about them. She feared they would discover that something was wrong with her.

That woman in purple armor...she's been in a dream before. Alexandria reflected upon her dream the night before as she strolled through town. She enjoyed traveling to the local market to buy fresh fruits and vegetables. It gave her a chance to do something mindless so that she didn't have to think about the dreams and how people would believe her to be crazy if she would ever tell a soul about them.

Who is she? Is she some sort of war general? Alexandria had to admit, the woman was quite beautiful, but every time she appeared in the dreams, a battle ensued. Alexandria didn't like to fight, not even in her dreams.

Nearly everyone in the small town of Coriander was out and about this sunny, warm morning. In the town square, children gathered around the town musician who was strumming a guitar and singing a popular song of legend.

Once lived a princess fair and kind

Who harbored another soul in her mind.

Though shunned by people of her land,

She was chosen by fate's hand

To save us all from a god's wrath,

She died and gave us a new path.

Alexandria smiled as she heard the children start to sing along. That had been her own favorite song as a child. The legend of this princess who fought off the gods helped her to believe that if she would endure her hardships, perhaps someday she would be a hero in someone's eyes.

After purchasing a basket full of produce, Alexandria headed back to her meager cottage. Tall grass and flowers surrounded the simplistic structure, so even though it was nothing fancy, Alexandria thought it was beautiful.

A young man with light brown hair and glasses was waiting for her in the the doorway.

"Josef!" Alexandria exclaimed cheerfully. Quickly, she set her basket on the ground and ran to the door, throwing her arms around him in a friendly embrace. "Where have you been? I haven't seen you for months!"

"I was studying in Dipan," came the reply. His gentle hands wrapped around her back to return the embrace.

Alexandria's heart leaped at the feeling of his arms around her. Josef had always been so reserved as a child. He preferred to sit and read his books rather than play with the children of the village. A hard working student by nature, Josef's dedication to his magical studies had earned him the respect of the village, and Midgard's magicians began to take notice of him. Although his magical ability had not been quite as proficient as they would have liked, the magical community was eager to train anyone interested in their craft. Josef had advanced quickly in the magic arts, and the high wizards of Dipan sought him out to train with them. The city's buildings had been rebuilt, but they desperately needed people to come and bring money and ideas back to the once wealthy land, so the opportunities for business and schooling were popping up rapidly.

At first, Josef only went once a month, but his visits to Dipan rapidly increased to every other week. Three months prior, he had begun to live in the once wealthy city, only returning to meager Coriander to study the vegetation in the area.

Alexandria hated when Josef was gone. She had been patient, but became increasingly frustrated when his interest in her never developed into more than a friendship. Typically, when Josef spent time in Alexandria's presence, he was either nose-deep in a heavy book or observing Alexandria as she did her daily chores, as though she were a plant in the forest. At first she fantasized that he was reveling in her beauty, but as time went on, these "observations" made her slightly uncomfortable.

"Alexandria," Josef interrupted her thoughts. "I have something I want to show you. Will you accompany me into the forest?" Josef smiled at her, extending his hand. Her heart began to race as she gently accepted it.


Author's note: This is my first published story! Eek! The plot sort of came to me as I was daydreaming about what I thought should have happened after the game ended.

Review if you would like. Constructive criticism is welcomed. This story is nearly complete, and I figured that if I actually went ahead and published it, I might actually finish it. I will update as soon as I have polished the next chapter until I feel it is "good enough."