LV. 10
GP 336


樓主 ★☆TWY☆★ wingyintang
9.11 新故事(英文)
816(Aries of Courage - Poppy,勇氣白羊 ‧ 波比)
On the meadow, I am snuggling against his chest, gazing at the azure sky...
“I wanna stay here so much, just the two of us.  What do you think?”
With a smile, he shakes his head as he stands up.  His bewildering eyes looks into mine.  Then, he bends down and whispers into my ear.
“My Aries, this is not where you belong…”
He disappears as dust, while the sky and grassland become total darkness.
“Where are you?” I falter, yet I can only hear the echo of my voice.
“Poppy!  Wake up, please!”
His voice sounds in the darkness.  As I run to the source of his voice, I see a bouncing glint of light, which grows brighter and brighter and surround me fully at the end.
I open my eyes to find Armstrong sitting beside my bed.
“Armstrong?” I call his name, trying to prop myself up with my hands.
“Poppy!  You finally wake up!  Hold on!  I will help you up.”  Armstrong supports me in raptures as I try to sit.
“Armstrong, where’s he now?”
“Aha!  Our little Poppy has grown up!  She’s looking for her lover once she opens her eyes!”
“Just tell me where he is!” I can hardly wait to see him.
“He had been staying beside you for a whole month without any prope;r meals, so Mr. Jiang took him back.”
“I’ll go see him then!” I try to get out of my bed, yet Armstrong pushes me back on to the mattress hardly.
“Nonsense!  You must take good rest right after a coma!”
At the moment, Persephone and Elma step in.  Persephone pushes Armstrong away from the bed and clutches me firmly.  I can feel the warmth flowing to me from her hand.
“Forget about what he said.  I will recover your strength.”  After giving Armstrong a despising glance, Persephone says to me with a smile.
Soon, I can feel that I have regained my vigor, so I get off the bed.  However, when I am about to take my sword and shield, Elma, who has been standing aside, suddenly grabbed my hand and declared, “Starting from today, I will be your coach.  If you can’t meet my standard, you are not allowed to meet him!”
Her words stunned me as I can’t get what she means by that, and I can only stare at her out of surprise...
817(Taurus of Berserker - Armstrong,狂戰金牛 ‧ 阿姆士唐)
I am completely exhausted after days of battles, but the war is yet to be ended.  Beads of sweat keep going down my face, and I can’t figure out either I am sweating so much for that I’ve been burning myself out or the scorching fire around.  In my eyes the soldiers of the Gods are all around and my mind begins to blur.  I can see her waiting for me back in the court in a bundle of nerves…
I gasp for air as hard as I can and I kneel on the ground feebly.  It seems that my limbs no longer belong to me.  I can see the enemies approaching, they might want to kill me in one go… I want to strike back so badly, I know I must resist, but I can’t even stand up…
Maybe this is the best I can give, is it?
I am sorry, Persephone… I can’t come back this time.
The battlefield I am fighting in suddenly becomes a golden wheatfield, where beautiful Persephone is standing.  Under the sunlight at dusk, her blonde hair looks more shiny than it usually does.  Oh, this is the scene of our first encounter.
I close my eyes in despair… So this is what death’s like.  It’s not painful though, I just can’t let go of what I have.  This is when the voice I miss so much pierces into my ears…
“Don’t give up!  The Armstrong I know will never be defeated so easily!”
I open my eyes out of surprise to find Persephone standing beside me, waving her scythe to defeat the waves of enemies that keep rising in front of me.
“How come… you are here…?”
“Didn’t we promise that we will always be together?  How can I leave you alone on the battlefield?”
“I may seem weak.  But once I take a battle seriously, I’m afraid that you’ll be no match for me as well.”
I sigh and smile.  There’s never an argument I can win if she’s the one I’m arguing with.
“Can you treat my wounds?  Let’s get outta here.”
“What do you think I’m here for?”
A stream of power flows through my body from my shoulder.  I raise my hands, gathering the fire elements and my power bit by bit.  When I look at Persephone, I find that she happens to be looking at me as well, so we smile together.  I know, as long as we stay beside each other, there’s nothing we can’t overcome.
818(Gemini of Recall - Castor & Pollux,憶念雙子 ‧ 加斯陀與波魯克斯)
I was always having the same dream, in which I saw myself and Castor trapped inside the darkness. We had to decide who was better, but I was not the one fighting. Instead, I was a spectator, witnessing two fighters with same appearance fighting with each other.  At the beginning, Castor launched fierce attacks by thrusting his swords, but “I” blocked the attacks with a barrier built by “my” waving swords.  After a while, I could no longer figure out who was me, or who was Castor… Covered with gaping wounds, we fell at the same time.  At this moment, the astralist asked with a steely voice, ‘Who won?’ I would wake up every time when “I” was about to reply, so that I could never know the answer.
‘Pollux, you are becoming fiercer than me with your swords.’
“Castor, your voice is fading.”
‘Maybe my power too.  Even the astralist could not keep me here forever...’
Silence falls on the two of us.  I draw out my twin blades, getting prepared for the coming battle.
‘If I vanish - ’
“No, maybe you are just tired.”
‘How could a soul be tired?’
I tap my right arm.  Over the years, it has become contorted due to the power of Castor.  The ugly skin of it has become the symbol for Castor’s existence.  I have looked for every single way to harmonize the power of constellations so that Castor’s soul would not be torn by it.  But, it turned out my effort was futile.
‘For every lifeform who has made use of the power of elements, their soul would dissolve in the power after death.’
“As if they are paying their debts.”
‘I don’t see it this way.  It could be a paradise for souls, a place where they could live peacefully ever after.’
“How come you believe in such myths?”
‘Haven’t you realized we are exactly the characters in these myths?’
“Then, what are we?  Heroes fated to sacrifice?  Or grim reapers that would bring death upon the battlefield?”
‘Let’s begin.’
‘Who won?’ the astralist asked steely.
“Castor has defeated me.” I, the spectator, answered.
Castor crawled in agony.  He pushed “me”, who was lying unconscious on the ground, away with his remaining strength.  “I” flew towards me, he was just like falling into my eyes - we became one and I woke up, but Castor was left in the darkness, where he awaited his vanishment silently.
I have cut off the throat of a soldier and stabbed my sword into his head from his lower jaw.  I am pushing forward like the tip of my sword; my twin blades are slashing through the enemies in the frontier.  Now, Castor is no longer holding my swords together with me.  He is just protecting me with his ghastly power.  It is just like his “tired” soul is embracing me.  I have to keep my swords swinging, so that no attacks could hit even a single bit of my body to awake my only kin.

819(Cancer of Resolution - John,堅執巨蟹 ‧ 約翰)
Go back at once!  Carry the message to the Courts!”
‘No one shall fine!’
The great hall is shaking as the dragon howls.  Sitting on the ground, Hertz draws his bow when the dragon afar throws boulders on us.  I turn to crush the boulders into powder, at the moment a flaming arrow fly across the cracked hall.  Yet as a stream of vapor gather, another dragon emerges to swallow the arrow.
As the mist obscures the hall and the walls of the tower is crumbling, the fragments of the walls dipped faster in the disrupted flow of elements.  The growl of the dragons and the sound of boulders crushing mingles in the air.  The path we barely opened up is ruined.  I stumble across the way and I can hardly split myself to help my partner out.
“This way!”
Someone in green calls me.  Following the familiar voice, I hop among the rocks.  However, I am struck by a flash of lightning all of a sudden.  Though I lifted my blade to parry, my mind fades away in the exploding pain.
When I regain my consciousness, the soldiers of the reinforcement were curing the injured ones.  As I hear the clip-clops of the hoofs, I saw Red Boy coming in his refined Armor of Sagittarius.  He asked sternly, “Where’s Hertz?  What happened?”
“I don’t know… what Hertz... had found... on the dragon… I didn’t... have the time... to ask - ”
I try to climb up, yet my body is paralyzed.
“You need to take a rest right now.”
“No!  We... must... find him!”
“I know.  He owes me a name too.” A stern face of Red Boy was hard to come by.  “Yet...”
‘He was no longer blessed by the astralists.  Let go of him, John.’
Upon the astralists’ advice in my mind, I seek confirmation from the boy.  “What did the astralists say?  Did they offer you any suggestions?”
“They told me to return to the Court...”
“Crap!”  I can barely put myself up.  “He’s right!  There’s only one step between Enochian Tower and heaven.  We must leave!”
“You mean… John, weren’t the two of you attacked by the Demons?”
“The cold war between branches is about to end.  No one is going to stay out from this!” Murderous design is conceiving inside me like a wildfire, in the way it did when I killed my superiors.  “The Gods are no longer - no, the Gods were never the ruler of the world!”

820(Leo of Gallantry - Galio,奮戰獅子 ‧ 加里昂)
Surrounded by vigorous flames, the crowd of soldiers of Gods is the only thing in sight.  Armstrong and I are separated and entirely fringed.
“Armstrong!  Are you alright?”
“I’m fine!  No worries!”
Once again I grab my broadsword and infuse it with the power of light elements.  This is such a long battle that reminds me of a battle in the past, when Armstrong and I were yet to inherit the Courts of Zodiacs… In that battle we were encircled by countless enemies.  We fought days and nights, like what we’re doing now.
I am wearied and my mind is worn down by the prolonged battle.  My shoulders sore and blisters have popped out of my palms.  Still, I can’t lower my sword despite of the consistent pain, for my enemies may take the chance once I let my guard down…
I know the enemies are coming from all around as the jumbled footsteps are getting closer.  I raise my sword, waiting for the right moment.  I have learned that stillness is also one of the tactics through my experience in the past, especially for a long-drawn-out war like this, I can never squander my power and stamina.
I can feel that the enemies are so close.  I direct all the power of light elements in my sword to the edge and wave it towards them.  Though a batch of enemies are defeated, more are coming.  I roar and charge them.
I keep exploiting my pneuma while I swing my sword.  Suddenly, my back aches awfully.  I turn and slash the enemy behind.  I know that I have been stabbed deeply on my back, but I just don’t have the leisure to take care of it.
I can feel the stings on my body getting hotter and hotter… Will I die here?
The enemies, as many as ants, are trying to swamp me.  What comes into my mind at the moment is the tender smile of the maiden with long hair.  Will she blame me if she knows I come for a battle without telling her?  Her sister will definitely give me a slap, won’t she?
I miss the moments when she groaned softly beside me so much…
It’s a pity I uttered no words at last…
If I manage to return alive, I must grasp the chance to reveal her my affection.
The soldiers, raising their weapon up high, come pouring to me.  I smile as I brandish my sword, making the impossible wish...

821(Virgo of Guardian - Persephone,見守處女 ‧ 普西芬妮)
I have been pacing back and forth in the Court of Taurus as I look at the gate again and again.  Time is elapsing bit by bit, the one I have been waiting for is yet to return…
“Didn’t he say that he will definitely return tonight?”
“Are the enemies are too strong and hard to deal with?”
“Could there be an accident?”
I start murmuring to myself.  As time goes by, I get more anxious.  At the moment I am about to leave the Court of Taurus, the gate slowly opens and a man in his scarlet armor comes in.
He is walking feebly as if he will fall at any moment.  I dash upon to support him with my hands.  He seems to be coming to himself only after the moment I have reached him.
“Oh.  Persephone, it’s you.  What’re you doin’ here?”
“I have promised you that I would come today.  Have you forgotten that?”
“No.  I just didn't expect you're still here.  It’s so late.”
“I always keep my promise.”
I smile as he giggles.  I bring him to the chair, so he can take a rest.  We remain in silence and no one utters a word, hearing our hearts beating faster and faster.  Though we say nothing, I can feel that our hearts are getting closer.
I kneel beside him as he is sitting on the chair.  I can hardly turn aside whenever I look into his eyes… I am the only one reflected in his eyes and this is the moment I hold dear the most.  I concentrate my pneuma on my hands and conduct it to him slowly, so that his stamina will be recovered.  He suddenly grabs my hands and says apologetically, “I am sorry.  I didn’t make it on time.”
Smiling, I shake my head and softly I say, “It’s alright.  You’re back.”
At the moment, the gate of the Court of Taurus is banged open, and our gathering ends abruptly.
“Armstrong!  I need your help!” shouts Galio.
He sighs and pats my head.  He whispers into my ear before he reaches Galio, in the way he usually does, “Wait for me.” Then they left the Court and disappear in the darkness of night…
I put my palms together praying for their victory.  I am determined that I would sacrifice myself for him.

822(Libra of Justice - Luna,公義天秤 ‧ 露娜)
“You have no authority to imprison me!” Saruman is roaring in the seal.
“Because of your betrayal, we have lost the heroes of humans.  You must pay for this!” Pollux is wrapping his wounds roughly. “Luna, get up to the tower, quick!  We can still make it - ”
“No, it’s already too late,” the Deep Thinker of Snow looks up the tower.“They should have reached the archangels.”
“They are braver than I thought,” I am drawing the last layer of seals. “And you, Saruman, are stubborner than my expectations.”
The shackles of elements are engulfing Saruman bit by bit, but he is still growling at us. “You invaders of the world!  You care only about your pets.  You never see the rest of the creatures!”
Not long before, Pollux intervened the conflict between Loki and Dark Cove.  He freed the elves from Loki.  Since then, the leader of the elves, Saruman, has been fighting by our side against the Demons.  However, he betrayed us in order to obtain the godly power, leaving us no choice but to seal him with the power of Enochian Tower.
“You’re right.  I am feeding their hearts.  As long as there is hope within people, I will protect their pure hearts.” The Deep Thinker walks to the front of the shattered wall.  The runes on the broken pieces of the tower glows as he conducts his power to the air.  “What I can do now is to open a channel for their souls, and let them choose whether to stay in the elements or not.”
“Has it killed all of them?” I asks the deep thinker. “Has it finally gone mad?”
“It?  You should know it more than I do, Luna.  You possess half of his heart, don’t you?”
I shake my head.  Lucifer has been silent to me.  He no longer helps me… Or I should say, he has already offered too much help to me.
“What left there are just the body of Lucifer and Michael, and a bit of their lives and consciousness.”
I look at the outside of the tower.  The human army are retreating according to the duke’s plan.  With their enemies gone, the Demons flock into the tower.
All souls are fighting for their own goals.  In order to ensure everything is fair and just, I help the human secretly, so that they could position themselves in the war between Gods and Demons.  However, they must climb the tower using their own strength in order to be recognized by the souls in the tower.  Therefore, as the Deep Thinker of Snow tries to help them enter heaven, he is obstructed by envious Saruman.  Justice would silently balance everything, and I must protect the weights so that the process would not be disturbed until they meet their own endings, at least...
“Should I drive them off?”
“No,” the Deep Thinker is pointing at the floating debris of the tower, on which the runes are shining.  “They have walked into the elements and activated the runes.”
“Enochian Tower is protecting itself with its phantoms.  Let’s retreat, Pollux.” Still, the scales of justice is shaking and the chaos is extending.  “Next time, the door to heaven will be pried open.  We shall prepare ourselves for it from now on.”

823(Scorpio of Agility - Elma,敏銳天蠍 ‧ 艾瑪)

The sound of metal clanging resonates in the Court of Scorpio.
When I pierce my tail to Poppy, she fends it off with her shield and swiftly slashes her blade at me.  I hopped back and dodge the sword, yet the sword of her cut off a strand of my hair.  Poppy keeps charging with her Shield of Aries made with the bones of rams.  I raise my sickle and the weapons hit each other.  The horns of the shield clutch my sickles at the same time she waves her sword towards me once again.  At the moment she thought she has defeated me, I have already raised my tail, fending off her sword while at the same time pointing the stinger at her throat.
“Can I take a break first?” Exhausted, Poppy looks at me.
From the sun above my head, I can tell it’s noon.  At the moment I nod to Poppy, she lies on the ground as if it is the closure.  Together I sit on the ground, for I am a bit tired too.
“Alma, how long do we still have to wait?”
“I think we’re almost there!”
The faraway Enochian Tower is engulfed by the light of flames.  I guess another batch of Summoners have reached the corridor to heaven.
“There’re crowds of Human there.  In order to open a way straight up to heaven, we must be well prepared!”
Poppy makes a sound that seems to be a reply, yet she looks so unfocus and I guess everyone knows what she’s thinking about.  I hold my fist tightly as I recall Red Boy’s words… ‘We still can’t locate where John is, but I’m pretty sure that he’s still alive!’ At the moment I blasted everything I in my sight.  Now my mind is occupied by one idea.
‘John, I will definitely get you back.  You owe me a game!’
I stand up and pat the dust off my clothes, then I lightly kick Poppy, who is lying on the ground.
“What’s up?  Gimme a few mo...”
Before Poppy can finish her words, I throw her sword beside her.
“Get up!  We must be stronger!”
824(Sagittarius of Frankness - Red Boy,坦率人馬 ‧ 紅孩兒)

‘Please protect the Court of freedom...’ Recently, I start hearing the voices of the astralists in my head.  ‘We will bestow on you the power...’
‘I can find that out myself.  It’s none of your business!’ I talk back in my mind.
As I get rid of the astralists from my mind, Hertz is standing beside me.
‘Red Boy, you’re now in charge of the Court.’
Red Boy is only a nickname of mine.  My father, who has been lost since long ago, has never name me.
“It’s just a interim mean.  I’m not going to take over your shambles.”
Hertz shakes his head with a bitter smile.  He goes into the array of the warriors of Courts for the final preparation before their departure.
“Don’t be cranky.”
Susprised by the Court of Cancer, who patted me lightly, the mechanical limbs folded on my back stretch and bounced away.
“Hertz will force you to if you don’t say yes.”
“I’m not born yesterday.”  As I return to John, I raise my body with the mechanical limbs so that I can look into his eyes.  “He’s not like you.”
“Then what kind of person do you think he is?”
“He’s an easy-going guy.  He never gets angry on me.”
John, who is used to putting on a stern face, smiles and says, “You’re right, but face Hertz only shows his affability to those he likes.”
“I mean, he’s a nice guy.  I’ve never tell you that he’s affable!”
“Yea.  You didn’t tell me you respect him as well.”
I kick John away and he fit in to jump off the stairs.  I can see the blades on his back as his cape flutters, and he lands so silently without making a sound.  In the past I used to regard the Court of Cancer as a quiet warrior, but the more I associate with him, I have learned that he is not a neglectful person.  He’s just relatively reserved and talks only to those he likes.
John whispers to Hertz and the latter turns back to wave at me.  The manner we part way reminds me of the moment when father departed -
Bull Demon King, who was full of mettle at the time, led the Elves to resist the Demons and never returned.  My mother and I looked in vain for him.  The Elves, who had lost their king, was later defeated by the Human.  The territory of Elves had been shrinking and the kingdom soon vanished.  Therefore I set off from my homeland to look for the power of the ancient regalia in the ruins, where I met Hertz when he was collecting tools from the ancient times.  I came to the Court with him for his recognition.
The Courts of Zodiacs are all queer fish.  All these years I have been living with these peculiar people.  Studying mechanics is a piece of cake when compared with learning to get along with them.  At first I listened to Hertz in order to learn the ancient technologies, but as I get familiar with them, I gradually treat the Courts as my friends and Hertz as my mentor.
‘Please protect the Court of freedom...’ The astralists start muttering again.  ‘Aren’t you looking for the one who means so much to you...’
As I follow Hertz and his brigade with my eyes, I reply them in my mind, ‘I’ve already found him.’

825(Capricorn of Meticulosity - Domon,嚴謹山羊 ‧ 杜門)
Such a field filled with flowers in the realm of men is hard to come by at such times.  On my way when I was rushing excitedly, thinking about hanging out with Carrie here, I was told that Hertz and John got involved in an accident!  As a result I could hardly invite Carrie…
With hesitation I suggested to Carrie that we could spar.  I should be able to ask her out with me after the match, I guess.
Stepping forward.  Split kick.  Horse stance.  Left straight.  No, it’s a fake move.  Right hook… Carrie deserves to be the Court of Aquarius.  She is nimble, without making any extra movements!  After several rounds, we lie on the grassland for a rest, in the same way we did in our childhood… Yes, the peaceful life we had been leading has already faded away.
With the missing of Hertz as a prelude, the situation now implies that battles between the Courts of Zodiacs and the Gods are inevitable.  Armstrong and Galio have already set out some time ago, they should have come back a few days before if everything’s usual.  However, Persephone and Ravniss can only wait for the return of their loved ones in the empty Courts…
In case of what happened to Hertz repeats, with Persephone as the leader, Carrie and I set off to look for them.
I can hardly describe what’s going on.  The closer we get to Armstrong and Galio, the burnt surface on the grassland gets larger, and the fire grows from a few sparks into a huge fire!  In the flames, the soldiers of Gods sprout up from the underground, rushing to the same direction.  So it’s obvious that it’s where Armstrong and Galio are!  Seeing this, Persephone hurries into the fire, while Carrie and I follow her at once.  We both understand the pain put forward by the affection.  Therefore instead of stopping her, we step on it to open up the way for her.
I stride forward quickly when Carrie runs to me from the back and vaults over me.  Using my shoulder as a springboard, she kicks a few soldiers off.  At the moment she has landed, I make her leg a support as I flip to assault the soldiers around and land with my fist.  It seems that our minds are connected by telepathy.  A single glance is all we need to keep in step with each other.  All the soldiers in our way are soon defeated by us, yet the next crowd of them grow out from the ground quickly - So that’s why Armstrong and Galio are yet to return.  As we are fending off the soldiers, I can no longer see Persephone in the crowd of enemies…
“I hope she can fetch Armstrong back on time.” Carrie says as she sidesteps a tackle, gazing at where Persephone disappeared.
I wave my fist beside her.  “Let’s keep this way open for her.”
826(Aquarius of Fantasy - Carrie,異想水瓶 ‧ 凱莉)
“How’re things going on between Armstrong and you?”
“Elma, how come you are so straightforward?” Blushed, Persephone replies.
I can’t recall since when the Court of Aquarius has become the spot for the girls gathering.  As long as they are free, they will come for chit-chat about love and relationship.
“Things just stop right there.  There’s not even a confession yet...”
“Geez!  So the dumb bull is yet to reveal his feelings!”
“I mean I haven’t… W...What?”
“Oops!  A slip of tongue!” Elma covers her lips as she giggles.
“Elma, what did you just say?”
“Hmm… I mean, hasn’t Domon proposed to Carrie yet?”
That’s quite a spin, Elma!  And you even dragged me into the mess!  When I am about to rebuke, Domon enters the room.  That’s why people say we should not gossip about the others.
“Carrie… Oh, so it’s a girls’ gathering.  Sorry to interrupt you gals.  I’ll come tomorrow then.”
“It’s alright.  Forget about them.  Let’s go.” I push Domon out of the room while Elma is cheering for us at the back.  Once we have stepped out of the Court of Aquarius, Domon drag me to the realm of men.  From his face full of excitement, something nice must have happened, I guess.
Domon has brought me to a place padded with flowers, even the breezes smell flowers.  Everything around makes me reminisce about our childhood, when after practicing we would take a rest at the grassland behind the knoll, where the breezes smelled flowers too.
‘I mean, hasn’t Domon proposed to Carrie yet?’ Crap!  How come I can hear Elma in my head?
W… What?  How come he calls me as if he is embarrassed?  It won’t be… Is it a pro, pro…
“Carrie.  It seems that we haven’t been sparring for long.  Would you like a match now?”
Domon is such a dude!
In the carpet of flowers, we square off each other and the flowers flew up high in the mid-air.  Domon is a real fool, that he waves his fists, grinning from ear to ear.  Is sparring with me that happy?  Sigh, I can never get angry at him whenever I see his smile.  I think I am the only one who can spend the rest of life with this idiot who knows nothing but martial arts.  The other girls would have dumped him long ago… Well, such peaceful days can hardly last, I think we should grasp the chance to enjoy it now.
827(Pisces of Empathy - Cateua & Ravniss,憐愛雙魚 ‧ 卡秋婭與拉維妮斯)

Before I set off, I detoured to the Court of Leo where I haven’t been to for a long time.  I am standing in front of the gate, my hands shivering when I place them on it.  I close my eyes, lower my head, and take a deep breath - it seems that it is the only way to bring out the courage in me to push open the heavy gate.
‘Ravniss, are you here for practice?’
“Galio!” As I whisper, the phantom is gone.
The enormous Court of Leo is filled with silence since its master has been gone, it has lost all of its glamourous glint.  As I walk to the centre of the court slowly, bits of the past come back into my mind…
The first time I met Galio…
The moments when I practised with Galio…
His face as if he had something to tell.  Everything is leaping before my eyes.
I crouch down, touching the chipped gigantic sword on the floor with my fingertip.  Weathered by hundreds of battles, it is no longer sharp.  I caress the blade, but it won’t hurt me anymore.
I am overflowed by grievance.  My tears shed like a waterfall, unstoppable.
“I... I want to see you so much...” My voice is hoarse, just like my throat is blocked.
I want to perish with him.
I should have realized there was something strange about him.
I want to start everything all over again.
At that moment, a bright shadow appear next to me.  I can feel a warmth coming from my head.  The warmth is so familiar that my eyes look for the source of it immediately.
“Galio... ?”
“I miss you so much. Do you know there are so many things that I wanted to tell you?”
He nods.
“We have lost too many companions in this campaign... I can no longer endure such pain now…”
He strokes my face lightly as he looks at me regretfully…
‘I am always here.  I have never left you.’
‘When you miss me, close your eyes, and I will be there.’
The light is getting dimmer.  I can’t but see him fading.  I stretch out my hand in attempt to hug him, but I can only grab the last bit of the light.  The bright shadow vanishes in the end, but Galio’s words are still resounding in the air.
‘Don’t give up.  Even though I am not with you, you are not alone…’
The gate of the Court of Leo is opened again, a shouty voice comes from behind…
“Ravniss!  You are really here!  Everyone’s waiting for you!  We have to go now!”
I wipe the tears on my face, stand up, and turn to Cateua, striding towards her.
“Okay.  I’m coming.”
851(Lord of R'lyeh - Cthulhu,拉萊耶之主 ‧ 克蘇魯)

“Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn……”
The priests stood in a circle.  They had set up an altar in front of the gate engraved with the emblem of Cthulhu.  However, what they were standing on was not the ground, but the walls of fallen buildings.  Surrounding the priests were buildings tilted with impossible angles, connecting with each other and even blocking the sky.  Standing close to each other on a small platform, the priests articulated incomprehensible labials, and vibrations were coming up from underwater off and on.
“That is not dead which can eternal lie, and with strange aeons even death may die. ” The leaders chanted.
All of a sudden, waves appeared above the city.  When the screens of water were about to fall on to the priests’ heads.  The waves were splited by the tilted towers, so that water was poured onto the houses surrounding the altar.
“In his house at R'lyeh, dead Cthulhu waits dreaming!”
In the fearsome tides came some fat tentacles, which wrapped and rolled the priests away.  Despite that, the priests continued praying, until every single of them were swallowed by the tentacles.
Cthulhu had been sleeping in R’lyeh, but R’lyeh was everywhere - on the back of Dagon, under the feets of his believers… The shaky world, overflowed with elements, was a warm bed for the elder god.  Cthulhu immersed itself inside numerous dreams and the kaleidoscope.  It did not want to be awaken.  However, no matter how many believers he gulped down, there were still be zealous ones who dared calling Cthulhu’s name.  As a result, Cthulhu buried itself in deeper dreams, and melted its consciousness into the bed of the world.  Its body was torn into countless pieces and became the Dwellers of the Sea.  Only a few enormous pieces inherited its name, engulfing its faithful believers in R’lyeh...
852(Ethereal Commuter - Cerberus,異界叩門者 ‧ 基路比魯斯)
When a soul in the outfit of onmyōji walked out from the underworld, an enormous paw tapped the ground next to him hard.  The sound and the power of the strike made the surroundings trembled.  The onmyōji could sense a blazing essence behind him.  He knew that there was an enormous monster standing behind him, but he was not scared at all.  He turned to the guard of the underworld behind him calmly, and waiting silently for it to talk.
‘No souls shall ever leave the underworld! The underworld is where you shall return to!’
The onmyōji did not speak.  He just looked into the eyes of the guard quietly.  All his story, his thoughts, and everything of him were sent to the guard through the glimpse - there was a reason he must return to the realm of men.
‘Though you have a reason, I can’t let you go!’
As it finished its words, the guard leapt to the front of the onmyōji, standing between him and the light.
‘Go back!  You are a reasonable man.  Don’t put me in a difficult situation.’
However, the onmyōji did not show any intentions of retreating.  He marched forward.  His determination to protect his loved ones has helped him win over his own fear and overcome all difficulties.  Even though it meant he had to fight against the guard of the underworld, he was determined to go to the realm of men.
“You made the choice!  Then don’t blame me!”
The guard shot many fireballs at him, but the onmyōji remained calm.  He sedately drew a magic circle in the air and summoned white foxes to fight by his side. The walls were cracked, and the gate of the underworld was destroyed, but the two were in a stalemate.  Under the cover of the white foxes, the onmyōji began drawing a pentagram and focused his pneuma on it.  Sensing the change of the energy within his body, the guard also condensed the pneuma of fire into a sphere to counter the onmyōji’s blow. A voice from the underworld stopped them...
“Let him go, Cerberus!”
“This is an order.”
The guard had no choice but to move away slowly, witnessing the departure of the onmyōji.  The ruler of the underworld came to the side of the guard…
‘My lord, I don’t understand why you would let him go.’
“Well, you are no match for him.”
‘So this is the only reason, isn’t it?’
The ruler of the underworld chuckled and he did not speak. He turned and walked back to the underworld, leaving the confused guard alone, gazing at the gradually fading figure of the
853(Medusa the Shattering Eyes,窳敗之瞳 ‧ 美杜莎)
Medusa had been speaking with her eyes.  Her head, placed inside the temple of Athena, luring people into gazing her with a bitter expression.
‘I had always wanted to leave.  I tended to run away from the rest of the world.  As long as there was a place where I could take a break, I don’t care even if I would fall out of the realm, or my body would die out… Now that my wish has been granted, but I keep thinking of him, the man who put me through all the misfortune.’ Sorrow would fill those who gazed into Medusa’s eyes, that they could not help but sighed.  ‘Maybe what he had done was what I had been expecting.  He killed me in place of me, for I could never go to great pains.’
The snack hair hanged limply while Medusa’s stiff face was looking at the front.  A sentence was left unfinished in her slightly opened lips.  The gazers had always guessed whether Medusa would like to thank somebody, apologize, or she was about to say something else.  In the silence as they were gazing at each other, the gazers’ body would pertify shortly.  Their consciousness would be soaked in Medusa’s sorrow, listening to the story of Medusa told by her beautiful eyes.  The gazers were sympathetic to her, yet they could no longer shed a tear, for their eyes, petrified, could only gaze at her, until they were carried away by Athena’s servants.
Athena had already forgiven Medusa after hundreds of years from the war.  She used Medusa’s head as a torture instrument for those who overstepped the boundary and fell in love with their god.  As a warning, Athena displayed the statues of her admirers.  However, people were determined at all cost to express their adoration, coming to Medusa contentedly.  They would look into Medusa’s eyes affectionately, confessing their unregrettable love to each other timelessly.
854(Glorious King of Beasts - Griffin,聖耀獸王 ‧ 格里芬)
“Golden wings as bright as the dusking sun, a body as strong as a lion, and eyes as sharp as an eagle… We’ve made it!  We’ve finally created our own Griffin with the blood left by our tutelary god!”
As people surrounded and observed Griffin carefully, it slowly opened its eyes.  It tried to stand up, but soon lost its balance and fell.
“Rise!  Our greatest creation!”
It tried to stand up once again.  This time it used all four of his limbs at the same time, and balanced itself with its wings stretched.
Everyone who witnessed the moment was happy for it.  They have finally succeeded after numerous failures over the years and they were all drunk on the happiness of success.  However, Griffin had been looking at the borderless sky in silence, as if it could see or hear something.
“Our mighty Griffin!  Please continue to protect us!  Please guard our Holylight City!”
Griffin ignored their words.  It gazed upon the heaven situated above the clouds.
“Griffin… ?” Receiving no answers from Griffin, people were confused.
All of a sudden, Griffin leapt to the highest point of Holylight City as if upon somebody’s summon.  It flew away with a big flap.  No matter how people called its name, Griffin did not turn back.  It just wanted to return to where “he” was…
Griffin flew freely in the sky, and it eventually found the figure that it had been looking for next to the sun.  It landed beside and they gazed at each other. After a while, the God of the Sun broke the silence…
“You come here for you had heard my worries and you want to accompany me, don’t you? ”
“It’s good to have you here.  It’s boring to stay alone.”
Smiling, the God of the Sun caressed the mane of Griffin, and Griffin greatly enjoyed the indulgence of the God.  The original Griffin was created by the God of the Sun.  It had been waiting for the return of the Gods, but the Gods did not make it before its death.  At the end, the last wish of the Griffin was finally fulfilled by “it” instead...
855(Baphomet the Wisdom Snatcher,深淵奪智者 ‧ 巴風特)
One after another, scholars in the town had lost their knowledge of the lifetime, including the basic daily living skills.  As if they were cursed, they were no different than newborn babies, for they had forgotten how to eat, dress up or open the door.  Whenever the darkness fell, people in the town would be extremely terrified as everyone was afraid of being the next target of the demon.  Not knowing when it started, a rumor was going about in the neighborhood…
“Knowledge can no longer be hidden, for the demon in the shape of a goat is here, watching for a chance to seize your knowledge.  Its name is Baphomet.”
The lord of the cove was sitting in silence in the hall, resting his chin on his hand with the eyes closed.  He seemed to be lost deep in thought.  Just then, not far from him he heard the  clattering of goat hooves.  When Sabbatic Goat came to him, the lord slightly opened his eyes and evenly asked, “You’re back, huh?  Made another trip to the realm of men?”
Sabbatic Goat gave no reply, and just kept walking quietly to the deepest part of the abyss.  At the moment its mind was overwhelmed by endless questions that it could not come up with an answer, sparing no time for other thoughts.  Looking at the goat, the lord of cove could only chuckle and say, “For much wisdom brings much vexation!  However, all creatures just love to pursue it with every effort…”
At first, Sabbatic Goat observed happenings in the realm of men from the cove.  Little by little it could not be satisfied by merely observing.  Instead, it was eager to have his own experiences.  Therefore, it started to meet with different scholars to learn their theories, listen to their explanations and then wrested every knowledge from them.  Yet, increased knowledge did not satisfy its desire.  Sabbatic Goat yearned for more and more of it, as he always believed that all its doubts and troubles could only be solved by gaining more knowledge...
“Ba… phomet…”
Sabbatic Goat was whispering the name given by people, and then thought about the meaning of this name.  It rubbed its hoof  across the forehead and sighed, for there was one more thing that puzzled it.  To look for the key, Sabbatic Goat held its sickle up again and went to the realm of men, searching for the next scholar who could answer it.

故事列表#76(9.11版本英文) #75(9.11版本中文) #52(8.1版本中文)

6189 筆精華,01/21 更新
一個月內新增 8

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