Another day and another chapter. This one picks up from where I left off.

Remember: All dialogue is indicated by ", ' indicates a character's thoughts and _ is a lapse in time or change in point of view. Dialogue in Bold represents opposite-speak, and italics will be used for the dragons' dialogue and/or flashbacks.

Disclaimer: The Rune Factory series were created by natsume.

Chapter VI: An Unexpected Destiny-part 2

The Elder Dragon of Water appeared before Micah. The blond hero addressed him"Thanks, Aquaticus, but who was that crimson knight?"

"That man was not human, I am able to sense a different energy flow from him then an average human. I can't believe someone would try to unleash and harness Apocalypse's power" rumbled the water dragon.

"Apocalypse? Who is that?" wandered Brenda.

Aquaticus hesitated a moment before responding"Apocalypse is a monster, more terrible and terrifying than any other. Even my own kin dare not speak lightly of him. The Crimson Knight is also unknown to me, only that he is not a foe to be taken lightly."

Micah was astonished by what he was hearing"You think someone's trying to destroy Norad?"

Aquaticus nodded grimly"That is what I am trying to warn you of. However, the future is yet uncertain, I fear I require your aid once more."

"I would have to tell Shara before I leave, but I will try to find out what the Crimson Knight is up to and stop him" said Micah, determined.

"Only the powers of the Earthmates can combat this evil. Micah, this may be beyond you alone. The bloodline of the Earthmates run through your family" responded the water dragon.

Micah shrugged"I don't really want to put my family in danger. Is there anything else we should know?"

The Water Dragon shook his head as he vanished back to the dragon cave"I have exerted much of my strength to project an illusion to speak with you, Micah. I know you and your friends will do what is needed. You need not act now, for I understand your concern for your kin. I must rest, and mediate what may unfold."

Dean was astonished"Things are so dire and serious now, huh?"

"Let's get back to the village, I'm sure we all need to rest after today" said Micah.

The three returned to Sharance, where Beth was speaking with Shara about the incident at Vale River. The orange haired woman was relieved when she saw Micah and their two kids"Micah, you're safe. I was worried about you, Dean and Brenda. Beth just told me what happened in Vale River."

"Sorry to worry you, but we're all safe" said the blond half-monster.

"Let's hope so" muttered Dean.

"Norad is really in big trouble isn't it?" said Brenda, worried.

Micah shrugged"Let's hope it doesn't lead to anything else, I don't want to think that Norad will be dragged into war."

Dean sighed"Well whatever, how's everyone else?"

"Sofia, Carlos, Raven and Evelyn were really worried. But at least you're all okay, wasn't Vale River too dangerous?" frowned Shara.

"Sort of, but I had my friends with me, mom. Dad and Dean protected me when I explored further" said Brenda, smiling.

Micah let out a light sigh"You're lucky nothing happened. I didn't expect to find someone other than the Death Wall waiting in ambush. It's a good thing you and Dean didn't get killed or your mom would've let me have it."

Shara shook her head slightly"I still can't believe what I'm hearing, I hope that dream I just had last night is just that."

"Did you have a nightmare?" said Micah, worriedly.

"Sort of, but I didn't want you or the kids to worry. The dream was so strange, Norad had somehow been turned into a wasteland. I wonder what may happen to our village." sighed Shara.

Micah gave his wife a hug"It's okay, it might have been just a dream. Even if it isn't, I can try to investigate that wierd vision for you if you want."

Shara's eyes widened in surprise"You would do that for me? I can't possibly ask this of you for such a silly reason as a nightmare."

"It's fine, I want our family safe. Shara, if it makes you feel better, I'll do what I can" said Micah.

Dean and Brenda gave off a smile, the blond girl spoke"If you're going on a journey, can Dean and I come?"

"Sorry, I can't take you with. As concerned as I am about the unknown Apocalypse, I bet there's an archive at the capital that might have some insight on ancient myths and such" said Micah.

Shara was surprised"The capital is quite a distance from Sharance, will you be okay? I mean, what if your secret is discovered by someone not from our village or the desert settlement?"

"It's okay, Shara. Brenda, Dean, I'm leaving early tomorrow, take good care of your mother and the farm while I'm out" said Micah.

Brenda closed her eyes for a second, then said"Okay, but I can't help but have a bad feeling about this."

"Beth, go back to your mother, okay? And Brenda, please don't do anything dangerous, the wildernesses aren't safe" spoke Shara.

Beth and Brenda nodded, then headed home. As Dean watched his sister leave for a moment, he thought'Dad's been training me how to fight, but why doesn't he invite me?'

At approximately an hour before dawn, Micah got out of bed, left a note on his nightstand and left the Sharance Tree after making a quick pickled turnip for breakfast. The blond Half-Monster's thoughts echoed through his mind'Shara's nightmare could've just been that, but I want to be sure. If I'm lucky, I can return from the capital to Sharance within a day.'

At Oddward Falls, Dean stood there. Micah frowned as he saw his teenage son"Dean? What are you doing up so early?"

"Dad, I'm afraid. What if you can't come back?" whispered the younger man.

Micah walked over and put a hand on Dean's shoulder"I will come back, but it may or may not be for a long time. That Crimson Knight is bad news, Aquaticus's warning can't be ignored."

"Dad..." The teen trailed off.

Micah hugged his son"Take good care of your sister and mother while I'm gone. I will return once Sharance's safety is ensured once more."

The Half-Monster let go, walked away a bit and transformed into a Wooly. Dean watched as his father's monster form sped off into the dawn'Dad's transformation is cool, why can't I ever do that?'

The day passed without incident, as Dean and Brenda helped their mother water the crops before she went to work. But on the following morning, the two young blonds began to worry, as their father hadn't returned. When Brenda asked Shara for permission to go look for Micah, the woman replied"Absolutely not."

"But what if dad doesn't come back?" argued Brenda.

The older woman hugged her daughter"Your daddy will be fine, I just know it. I'm worried too, but I believe in him."

Dean, who was watching as Brenda and Shara cooked, sighed'Dad said he might be gone for a long time, but my mom and sister can't both be wrong about their dreams.'

The evening slowly approached as the family continued on with their daily routine, despite the blond girl's sinking feeling. After dinner, Dean addressed his sister"I don't know about you, but I'd rather be out there helping dad with whatever he's doing."

"Yeah, but mom won't let me. You know how worried she gets sometimes" frowned the girl.

The older boy smiled"Why don't we get her some flowers? I can't guarantee it'll show we're not babies anymore, in fact I want to help out somehow myself."

"We can't both leave" protested Brenda.

"Who said anything about leaving? Leave it to me, I'll help mom while you're out" grinned Dean.

The two siblings picked some flowers from the flower field and returned home. Their mother had just finished doing the dishes when the teenage boy addressed her"Hey, we thought we'd bring back some flowers."

Shara was surprised"Did you get them from the fields?"

"How did ya' guess?" giggled Brenda.

"Mothers know these things. I don't mind you picking a few flowers from the field, I just hope you didn't take too many" smiled the older woman.

Dean handed his mother the flowers"I was just thinking, since Brenda and I are a couple of years away from adulthood, she should be given the chance to do what she wants. I couldn't stop thinking about dad, and what we heard about the dream you had."

"Dean... Brenda... You're probably right, I just didn't want either of you hurt. You know, your great-grandfather passed away several years ago, I didn't want to be alone. Your aunt Monica opened an accessory shop in Lililand, which is not so far away. If you are to go on a journey, you should go there" said Shara.

"Oh yeah, that's right, we got her letter yesterday. Brenda, how are your magic skills coming along?" inquired Dean.

Brenda grinned"Great, I practiced this morning. I even mastered a cure spell, so I'm good to go. I just need to pack up supplies."

"It's getting late, we'll discuss this further tomorrow" interjected Shara.

Morning came in a flash, as Brenda ate breakfast with her family and packed up. Dean addressed his little sister"Sorry I can't come with, but I'll take good care of mom while you're out."

"I know, brother" said Brenda, softly.

Shara spoke up"Don't forget to write once in a while, okay?"

"Yes, mom" said Brenda, hugging her mother.

Shara sighed"I suppose this is what they mean by destiny, I hope you and Micah will return home safely."

"Brenda, be sure to make new friends along the way, all right? Heh, I bet you'd even find a boyfriend" grinned Dean.

"That's quite enough, young man. Brenda, be safe out there, okay? Lililand Village is west of here" said Shara.

Brenda picked up her rucksack, which consisted of some food and money for the road, and headed for the Privera Forest, stopping to smile in amusement when she heard the local artist shout out"Rainbow!" as she worked on her masterpiece in her house.

"Brenda, Don't wait for us" called a voice, as Henry and the rest of her friends showed up.

"Came to say good-bye, guys?" smiled the teenage girl.

Beth quietly approached her friend and said"I'm coming with you, I got mom and dad's permission. I may only have a quarter of the monster blood that runs in my mom's veins, but I can at least transform into a small pheonix to help fight alongside you."

Brenda smiled"Yay, thanks for coming. Henry, Steve, bye, thanks for coming to see me off."

"No problem" grinned the half-dwarf.

"Have a unsafe trip" smiled Henry.

Brenda and Beth nodded, then proceeded on their way. The red-haired girl addressed her traveling companion"So what do think we'll find at Lililand?"

"I dunno, but my aunt is there" smiled Brenda.

The road passed the flower fields was narrow, so the two girls knew which way to go. As they traveled westward, Dean caught up"Wait."

"Brother? Did you change your mind?" said Brenda.

Dean shrugged"You know mom's friend's son, Artur right? Well, he had just come by the house and asked mom if he could help with the farm after hearing what happened. So, I decided I'd come with you after all."

"Heh, Artur always comes at the best times" giggled Brenda, thinking of the small purple haired Univir who is Kuruna and Ondorus's son.

Dean grinned"So, we're off to Lililand together. With any luck, we'll find dad while questing out in the middle of nowhere."

Brenda smiled at her brother's optimism, but could not help but think things were going to get more dangerous than she anticipated.

Next time I take this long, you can go ahead and flame me. I hope you enjoyed this chapter, the next one will center on Aria and Orland.

Please feel free to review.