Things you need to know before reading this chapter:

- Character thinking

Disclaimer: I don't own Tales of Symphonia and Tales of the Abyss

Prologue: A Wandering Planet

Alarms could be heard throughout the whole planet. People with wings could be seen pacing or flying around as if taking leisurely strolls and that no alarm was sounding. No emotions could be seen on any of the faces of the winged people, as if they're all automotive dolls set to move around. Amongst the lifeless beings, a blur of purple and red was making a beeline towards the center of the Holy City of Welgaia.

The blur started slowing down as it got closer and closer to its destination and it was revealed to be a man in his late twenties with wild red hair, wearing purple colored full body suit completed with shoulder capes and swallow tails hanging down them, he was also wearing matching gloves, belts and boots.

The man rushed past a set of double glass door of one of the buildings situated near the center of Welgaia and was greeted by two of the winged people.

"Lord Kratos." The angels chorused simultaneously and monotonously.

"What is the problem?" He asked the nearest angel.

"Derris Kharlan is being attracted by an unknown source and is accelerating towards said source." The angel stated calmly, as if it was nothing out of the normality.

Inhaling deeply, Kratos calmly, or as calm as he could manage in this situation, told the previously spoken angel to turn off the alarm and the other to follow him. He quickly got into the control room and started looking through the calculations on the computer. He didn't have to read much before understanding what was happening and started cursing his luck of encountering a potential black hole.

That's it, after 4 years of drifting aimlessly, atoning for my sins, it's finally time for me to move on to another world. But is it really the right choice for me to leave Aselia in the first place?

During the 4 years of living in Derris Kharlan, not only once did Kratos regret his decision to leave Aselia, to leave his son behind. What will you say if you see me now, Lloyd?

Turning away from the computer, he looked at the angel that has been standing behind him and suddenly felt very tired. I may more or less deserve the same fate as this planet, but what about the other angels on Derris Kharlan? Unlike me, they are victims of Mithos' plan. Even if they may never be able to regain their true self again, did they deserve to disappear with this planet and me?

"Continue to monitor the calculations and alert me if and when any changes are made to it."

"Yes, Lord Kratos."

Feeling that there's nothing else he could do, Kratos left the control tower and walked along the streets of Welgaia, where more angels were just walking or flying around aimlessly. What will you do in this situation, Lloyd?

Kratos began walking towards his own room, knowing that there wasn't anything he could do except wait now that his fate and the fate of Derris Kharlan and all the people living in it was sealed. Once inside his own room, he took out a worn photo from a drawer of his desk and sat down on his bed. A look of peace settled on Kratos' face as he gazed at the photo. In the photo was a woman with long and straight brown hair holding a baby boy. Both were laughing happily.

It's finally time for me to join you in death, Anna. But I doubt a sinful man like me will be able to go to the same place as you.

He started reflecting on his life. Hmph, not much to reflect on, most of my life were doing inhumane things while working for Yggdrasil. It seems a man like me can't find peace even on the eve of his death. Then he thought of his wife and focused on her smile in the photo. You really are an angel, Anna, to allow a man like me to find solace in you.

Time seems to have frozen when Kratos stared at the photo. I wonder what Lloyd is doing now, is he still with Collete, are they married yet? Do they have any children? I knew the day I decided to leave with Derris Kharlan that I'll never get the chance to see, let alone hold, my son and the children he may or may not have yet. A droplet of water hit the old photo. However, I never imagined I will cry over this fact.

"..tos. Lord Kratos. Lord..." Releasing someone's outside the door, he looked at the time and realized he had simply been sitting there, doing nothing except staring at the photo for the past three hours.

He quickly schooled his features - sometimes he wondered why he's still doing that even though none of the angels will notice his dismay anyway - and opened the door. Looking at the emotionless expression of the angel he assigned to watch over and report should there be any changes in the calculations.

"What is the new result to the calculations?" He asked, trying not to sound too hopeful.

"Derris Kharlan is decelerating and slowly changing it's direction of travel." Even before the angel had finished his report, Kratos had left the room and started tracing his step back to the control tower.

Another angel greeted him upon his entrance into the control tower, but Kratos ignored it and went straight into the control room. With suppressed hope, Kratos studied the calculations on the screen.

"Derris Kharlan is set to an orbiting path?" Confused, Kratos carefully checked the calculations again. But no matter how he looked at it, the results were still the same: Derris Kharlan was setting to an orbiting path around an unknown source, mostly likely the one that attracted it in the first place.

If the calculations are correct, which I am sure, then the only question that remains is what or who has the power to change the course of a planet.

Looking over at an adjacent screen, Kratos started looking for the calculated profile of the nearest planet.

Let's see... A Habitable planet with sufficient amount of water for life. Land that is easily large enough for the whole population of non-human in Aselia. The atmosphere also comprises a healthy mix of oxygen and carbon dioxide and also some unknown but not poisonous particle.

He looked at the second column on the planet profile about the outer atmosphere of the planet.

Those particles also seem to have been floating at the boundary of the outer atmosphere and will be quite close to Derris Kharlan once the new path of it is set. Hmm... Seems Derris Kharlan is docked to a very much populated planet.

Then he noticed something not normal for a normal planet.

Wait, this planet has two layers? The lower layer is full of miasma and is not fitted for living, and also has a liquefied mantle as its 'sea'. There also seems to be something holding up the outer layer... Does that mean there's someone powerful enough to provide the means to push the mantle up to a height where the miasma can't reach? Or is it that they have technology advanced enough to do something like that? Either way, I'm sure I can find the reason for Derris Kharlan's weird behavior on this planet. But first...

Turning his attention to the angels behind him, he gave out his orders.

"Prepare the emergency warp and tell the other angels to prepare to defend Derris Kharlan, alert me if any outsiders are spotted on the planet, keep your distance and don't strike out without my permission." He told the angel on the left, who replied with a standard 'yes, Lord Kratos' and left.

He turned to the angel on the right. "Set the destination of the emergency warp to the coordinates of the nearest planet and continue to monitor the calculations, let me know at once if any changes are made to them."

"Yes, Lord Kratos." The angel said and took a sit in front of one of the computers and started typing.

Kratos left the control tower and asked the nearest angel to prepare a communication set that would allow him to communicate with the control room even over a very long distance. He then started towards his room, all the while thinking of possible ways to alter Derris Kharlan from its original course and the possibility and implication of having to face someone with that power.

Upon entering his room, he carefully pocketed the photo of Anna and Lloyd that he left on his bed when he went to the control tower. Opening another drawer, he took out several wing packs. Time to do some packing.

Author's Note:

I loved reading the fanfics in this site, and has recently opened an account (not really recently... but I only started to actively used it recently) and wanted to try out my writing skills. I like Tales of Symphonia and Tales of the Abyss very much since I first played them and has decided to write a fanfic about my favourite character: Kratos. This is my first time writing a fanfic, please be easy on me.

Uploaded on 17 June 2012. Edited on 4 April 2013.