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"Cruce."
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"The time is now!"
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"Cruce Ifai!"
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The First Cross:
The Crystalline Genesis

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(C r u c e)
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-Source of Genesis.-

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[Cruce lay in the chamber of the shrine, still within the Ancient Growth. The pillars have fallen and the ice has shattered. The entire room is destroyed. In addition, everything has lost its color. Time is standing completely still in this monochrome world. There is no life but Cruce.]
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[Cruce is alone.]
Cruce: [He struggles, rising to his feet. His vision goes dark.]
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"Everything you know is gone..."
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Cruce: [His vision goes light. He looks up at the top of the dilapidated shrine, spotting swirling movement. Darkness.]
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"Everything you know is gone..."
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Cruce: [Light. The distorted whispers in his head do not stop him from moving forward to the shrine. Darkness]
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"Everything you know is gone..."
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Cruce: [Light. Cruce limps slowly to this shrine. Darkness.]
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"Everything you know is gone..."
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Cruce: [Light. He closes his eyes tightly, growling. Darkness.]
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"Everything you know is gone..."
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Cruce: [Blackness. He snarls, growling more intensely at the whispers. Darkness.]
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"Everything you know will forever be gone..."
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Cruce: [He opens his eyes.] NO!!
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"The Light's home is with -me-!
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[Cruce runs up the shrine and into the swirling spacial displacement left behind...]
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[Now he is gone...]
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(C r u c e)
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-Temporal Plain.-

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[Cruce steps from the same spacial misplacement on another end. He steps from the black vortex as a human, entering a monochrome field. This is the very same field Team Time stumbled upon in their search for the Time Gears. Cyclonic gray air spirals around the region. It is the sky, the atmosphere. A dark purple glow rises from the horizon...]
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Cruce: [With a firm glare into infinity, he slowly moves one arm in a circular motion in front of him, a stream of white and green following his hand. He brings his hand to his side firmly, a bright light solidifying into a weapon which he wields backhand. This is the "winged" cross-blades Topher was holding. Dimension.] ... [Now with his left hand, he does the same, this time a trail of white and yellow following. Again, he brings his hand down firmly, another light forming into a second cross-blade, wielded the same way. This is another cross-blade that Topher was wielding; the "leafy" one. Deity.]
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[In this whirlwind plain of oblivion, pools of blackness begin to spawn Nightmares across the field.]
Cruce: [Unfolding, he stands in a fiercer battle stance. He awaits the Nightmares' charge. As they do so, he bursts forward in a frenzy of swipes alternating between both cross-blades as he does so. Cruce rampages through these Nightmares with hardly a scratch received. Holding one cross-blade flat in front of him and the other vertically behind his head, he aims down his sights to the purple horizon, a trail of Nightmares spawning from black pools ahead of him. With Dimension hold above him, he lets it fall back, controlling its fall with his loose telepathy before hopping back on it and surfing on it in midair as if it were some incarnation of a hoverboard.He ascends above the Nightmares, performing a large loop in midair. As he is upside down, he aims with Deity at the trail of Nightmares, a stream of yellow radiance striking the ground and lining down the trail. A few moments after this light impact, columns of ice rise from the ground where the light blazed down the trail, lifting the Nightmares into the air. With a psychic shield from Dimension blocking Cruce, he dashes forward at a breakneck speed, slicing through these airborne Nightmares.]
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[Cruce soars ever further into this monochrome mayhem that is Darkness until he is stopped by, not one, but two Black Parasites. They are equal in size to the previous encounter. Both roar as Cruce wisps around them like air, his cross-blade shooting out from under him and looping around back into his hand. He now drops to the grass, wielding both of his blades again and facing this twofold threat.]
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[One of the parasites lashes forward with its tendrils, barely missing Cruce.]
Cruce: [Hops to the side, then leaps forward and up at the attacking parasite, running up its tentacle and inverting his position as he jumps, his blade slicing through this tentacle. Cruce pushes off of the monster's hideous body, Dimension beginning to glow as he flies back. He hurls it at the wounded parasite, the weapon twirling in a frenzied raid. It slices through the center of the parasite, then beams through it another time, then another, then another. It is like the electrons of an atom twirling around a doomed nucleus. Black acid spills all over the grass as the monster slowly vaporizes into this same acid, leaving only one behind. Dimension returns to Cruce just as the second parasite slings him out of the air. He hits the ground, though does a somersault to recover quickly. The monster quickly scurries to him. Cruce rushes to the parasite, slashing away at the tendrils that threaten him. Thinking quicker than the parasite can attack, he hops on to one of these tendrils. The parasite slings him high into the air. Soaring above the monster, Cruce raises Deity above his head, the leaf-blades gleaming gold. Without hesitation, he throws the weapon straight down through the monster's head. Upon impact with the ground, a certain radius within the parasite is frozen solid, including the parasite itself. Cruce hurls Dimension high into the air, now descending quickly with one leg partially raised and the other fully extended. He falls quickly into the parasite, crashing into it with an explosive shockwave sent out upon impact. The beast shatters; a similar defeat to the previous one in the Ancient Growth. Cruce, standing on the frozen grass, pulls Dimension from the ground and faces forward, his opposite arm out and hand extended. At the perfect time and without even looking, he closes his hand, catching Dimension from its fall.]
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[He continues on ahead.]
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[Eventually, after doing battle with more Nightmares on the plain, the air around him develops a color, and that color is purple. The ground beneath his feet is now black ice. Large thorns of ice protrude from the ground, branching off into frozen vines. Some of the ice hangs suspended in midair, frozen in time. One ice structure in particular is shaped like an altar. On top of this black altar stands a colorful, beautiful Safan...]
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~Nuvaaya~
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[An ethereal laughter can be heard from this shining Safan.]
Cruce: [Stands firm a few yards from the base of the altar. He looks up, glaring at the Safan.]
Nuvaaya: [She is a melding of Nuvlora's and Maaya's physical traits, or at least that is what she appears as. Slowly, this goddess takes her time walking down the stairs.] Hmhmhmhm...
Cruce: ... [He says nothing, awaiting the Safan.]
Nuvaaya: Mmm, that look upon your face, human... Burning with the fury of a thousand stars... So entrancing... So enthralling... [She comes closer to Cruce...]
Cruce: [Tightening his grip on his weapons.]
Nuvaaya: ...Cruce... I know it is you... I am the Eclipse. [She is now on the frozen ground with Cruce. With each steps she takes, the ground becomes a random splash of color as flowers sprout from the ice]
Cruce: ...Nuvlora... Maaya... Who are you? What are you?
Nuvaaya: I am Nuvaaya... Ruinous... Ecliptic... Phaze... Hmhmhm, a mouthful, is it not? [She continues approaching, the world around the two turning more colorful. It begins forming into a beautiful green plain.]
Cruce: [He steps back once.] I know the truth, "goddess". I know what you're really doing... I will not be fooled.
Nuvaaya: Dear Cruce... I would not consider trying to fool you... Why, I have awaited the moment whence you would come unto me... [Her voice seems to become Nuvlora's.] You do not know, Cruce. You know so little about my plans... I strayed from Darkness, yes. It was not Danny's intent to do so... it was mine... I strayed so that I may recover myself upon this new realm. With two sources of almighty power resting upon one world, slowly usurped by the forces of Darkness, my power was amplified. I returned a force far more powerful than the Overlord of Misery could ever hope to control.
Cruce: [He drops his weapons, grasping his head tightly and closing his eyes.] Sh-shut up... This is all a lie! This... tell me the truth!
Nuvaaya: I am, Cruce. Think... I have taken everyone but you into my being... I wanted you... to live... It was not Danny who became infatuated with you, but I. I felt your commendable power, your soul so larger than life and death... Simply intoxicating, Cruce... I wanted you to remain in this world with me... [Her voice slowly shifts into Safiri's] Dear Cruce, my efforts thus far have led us to be together in this vast endless plain... Please, join me in the conquest of absolution... Join this goddess in acquiring all worlds, all realms... everything... You shall be rewarded... ...With this...
Cruce: [Cruce opens his eyes again. He stands within a beautiful meadow, now a Safan once again.] Wh--?! What did you--?! ...M...Maaya...? [Watches Nuvaaya approach him.]
Nuvaaya: Fear me not, Dear... You have displayed such unparalleled strength... and it is because of that that I have felt such invaluable feelings for you...
Cruce: [Backs away a bit.] Stop this... please...
Nuvaaya: [She walks to Cruce faster than he can back away.] ... [Her voice slowly shifts into Danielle's.] Think... we can go so far as deities of the universe... Together... forever... Eternity... [She catches up to Cruce. He stops... She inches closer to him, kissing him on the lips.]
Cruce: [...He starts to give in, returning the kiss with eyes closed...]
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[The two press deeper into the kiss with each other.]
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Nuvaaya: [With her forepaw, she gently strokes the side of one of Cruce's legs, tilting her head to further lock her lips with his.]
Cruce: [He feels his insides tingle with bliss as Nuvaaya opens her mouth wider. Cruce begins to let his tongue feel at hers.]
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[The two slowly lower themselves to the grass at the same time, the kiss remaining unbroken. They now lay in front of one another, Nuvaaya inching back to lick at Cruce's lips.]
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Nuvaaya: Hmhmhm... You see, Dear...? I promise you eternal happiness... I promise you... because... [She looks him in the eye, her nose touching his.] I love you...
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Cruce: [With his eyes half open, he looks at Nuvaaya, entranced.] ...Maaya, I--... I... love...
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"I..."
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"Love..."
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[Suddenly an anomaly.]
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"Cruce, stop!"
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[It seems to be Topher's voice, echoing from the spacial folds of nowhere.]
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"Cruce, this is all a mind trick! Don't listen to Maaya!! Don't be taken by her!!"
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Cruce: [His eyes flash open in reality. He is still standing as a human in a monochrome frozen wasteland, his weapons on the ice beside him. Instantly, he throws his palm out in a battle stance.]
Nuvaaya: [Having been using a red corrupted Time Gear, the fifth one, to drain Cruce's energy, she hops back.] What?! H-how!? Gah, you were almost mine!
Cruce: Lies, lies, and more lies. That's how it's going to be, hm? [He thrusts his palm into the ground, a barrage of ice shooting up from underneath Nuvaaya. The ice simply splits around her at her command before it shatters into nothingness. She glares at Cruce darkly.]
Nuvaaya: ...Well... If I cannot take you by means of this psychic magic... I will have to take you by force... [A yellow and pink radiance flows around her, shimmering through the gray air. It clusters in two peculiar shapes on her back until eventually large dragon wings matching the colors form. Each wing is larger than her entire body, presumably Supernova's. The radiance around her continues to amplify, emitting a mystical hum as it does so.] Darkness is inferior... Darkness shall always be inferior to Light... Now face this Light...
Cruce: [Watching Nuvaaya, he grabs both of his cross-blades and cartwheels completely backwards, standing in his battle stance as soon as he is upright once again. He watches as Nuvaaya takes flight, the Time Gear forming a giant red shield around her... This energy gathers the floating ice, which begins swirling around Nuvaaya's shield. Cruce does a backflip high into the air, landing on one of the floating ice chunks. He holds Dimension forward, a force-field of mind magic forming in front of him. The Time Gear can be seen sparking high above Nuvaaya. It shoots forth a dark energy blast which impacts the shield and causes it to shatter. Cruce maintains his balance. Nuvaaya cannot be seen in the obscuring debris and light. Cruce simply waits for the next dark energy burst. Instead of blocking it, he jumps back off of the ice crystal and lets the burst collide with it, shattering it. Using Dimension's presence to take flight, Cruce points deity forward at the shattered ice, holding it in midair with Deity's telepathy. His gaze intensifies as he sends these shards at Nuvaaya. It is of no avail. The surrounding forces are too powerful to break. The Time Gear readies another blast. This time, Cruce is hit. He falls to the ground, the darkness burning from him.]
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[Cruce stands, shaking the blast off. He looks up to see that Nuvaaya has transformed completely...]
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[She is now an enormous white and black-iced dragon colossus, evidence of Supernova's presence. The Time Gear is upon her icy crown.]
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Cruce: (There's only one way to save them... Destroy everything that is them.) [He leaps into the air, summoning Dimension's power to allow him to take flight again. Nuvaaya roars ferociously, opening her mouth and blowing forth an icy mist accompanied by a radiance. Cruce soars through this with Dimension held forward, mind magic protecting him, though not completely. He feels the erosion of his soul from the mystical light magic, and the sting from the icy cool breath. He begins to ascend to her crown. From portals of light around her, Nuvaaya conjures chunks of black ice to launch at Cruce as he nears her. He bashes through the ice as he soars, though comes within striking range of Nuvaaya. She barely misses him with a sweep of her arm, the tip of her claws almost shredding Cruce. He ascends higher until he is at her head. A particular field of light surrounds the Time Gear on this crown. Cruce slashes away at this shield, dealing considerable damage to it until he is swiped off by Nuvaaya. Cruce has to resist the temptation to give in to this strange sensation of a more powerful gravity. He maintains his flight, though struggling to do so. He finds that this gravitational force is gleaming upon him; an effect from the light magic.]
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[Cruce continues the routine of charging at Nuvaaya, fighting to breakthrough her relentless attacks. As he reaches the top of her head once again, he is slower. He takes a moment to breathe before charging at the energy field and hacking away at it before he is swept off again. This time, he falls all the way to the ground. Nuvaaya seems to inhale, charging up a sort of powerful move that could easily end Cruce.]
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[Cruce lays on the black ice, on hand over his chest with the other loosely grasping Deity. He turns his head to Deity... his eyes widen. He thinks back to Nuvlora's abilities to siphon plant-life. He clenches his fist around Deity, rising to one knee and, with both hands, he firmly thrusts the cross-blade into the ice, breaking through it and reaching the soil beneath. The weapon glows yellow, along with the entire ground underneath the ice... Suddenly, rays of light find their ways through the cracks of the ice, shooting up into the air before arcing back down into Cruce's body...]
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Cruce: [He looks up at Nuvaaya, his body gleaming with health again. He holds out one hand to summon Dimension with telepathy. It returns to him. As he does this, Nuvaaya unleashes her attack; an enormous sphere of solid frozen hydrogen and light is blown from her mighty maw, scintillant streams of frozen phosphorescent fire trailing this comet. With the power of the Temporal Plain within him, he bursts forward at hyper speed, similar to Safiri's power. As he reaches the comet, he slices in an outward X-shape with his cross-blades, tearing through the frozen hydrogen, but only just. As he breaks through the other side of the comet, it parts into four more comets and impacts with the ground, exploding in a blue eruption behind. In this moment of split-second thinking, Cruce inverts his weapons so that they point forward. He beams up at Nuvaaya, tearing through her torso as she tries desperately to swipe him, portals of light appearing all around her to try an capture Cruce. This time, her moves are of no avail. Cruce beams up in a half-pipe shape, then completes the circle at a high altitude, plummeting down toward the Time Gear crown. Upon impact, the shield breaks into fragments. The tip of the frontal blade of Dimension has caught the Time Gear through the central hole. Just as meteorites of ice greet him, Cruce rockets up into the sky, again riding Dimension as if it were a hoverboard. It still holds the Time Gear.]
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Cruce: (Only one way to end this all...) [High in the vortex, he can see the meteorites begin to chase him into the sky. He flips the cross-blade he is surfing on, then faces downward, the gear wedged on the blade. Now wielding Deity frontside with two hands, he slices through the oncoming threats before holding this cross-blade at his side bushido-style; as if it were sheathed. The front blade radiates with high-concentrated energy from the plant-life around the Temporal Plain. Dimension glows green, the Time Gear becoming this color as well. The elements of Time and Botany begin to collide in sub-fusion, causing the air to distort around Cruce.]
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"Time to kill the Light."
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[Faster than the blink of an eye, Cruce breaks the speed of sound using this combined element. At the sight of Nuvaaya, he slashes forward with Deity whilst crushing her with Dimension. Dimension is a green streak, almost like an arrow. The slash from Deity is elongated a hundred times, creating a crest shape of a yellow streak, completing a cross through Nuvaaya. She is crucified. All sounds seems to cease aside from the high energy hums of both massive forces colliding like they were never meant to. Flashes throughout the atmosphere... A nova of green and yellow fire scintillates the Temporal Plain...]
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[Destruction.]
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[Emptiness.]
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Cruce: ...(...Did I...?)...
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Cruce: ...(...Did I do... what I was supposed to...?)...
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Cruce: ...(Am I dead...?)...
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Cruce: ...(Is this nothingness what death is...?)...
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Cruce: ...(...I feel no pain... No suffering... no body...)...
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Cruce: ...(And... nobody...)...
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Cruce: ...(...Now... at least... I can be... dead...)...
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Cruce: ...(With everyone else...)...
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"Nobody cries... when everyone dies..."
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[Suddenly, Cruce is himself in this emptiness. On the ground of blackness before him is the Time Gear. It has lost its color, and it has been split in half. He bends down to pick the pieces up...]
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[He observes them, feeling nothing from either piece. Time no longer exists.]
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Cruce: (Hm... funny... Those moments... when one's life was in peril, or even over... Yeah... Hm, I remember... Whatever I did to save them...)
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"Well, it's not so easy, now that I think about it..."
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"Time's V... it started up a game for me."
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"But without it..."'
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"What's the program supposed to be?"
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"Who's in control...?"
Cruce: [Cruce drops the Time Gear pieces.] ... [The world around him becomes a pale blue. The ground beneath him is clear, save mysterious crests that seem to substitute for a ground. Beneath this ground, light blue disorderly pillars sprout...]
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-???-

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[Cruce walks through this dimension hidden in the folds of physic nature. With each step he takes, the ground sparks gently, sensing his weight and creating new ground as he continues. The sky is blue and black with pillars suspended in the air as well. Stars seem to be underneath the clear ground. In the distant horizon, a spread singularity is seen sucking this realm within it 360 degrees around the area. Only one object obstructs this horizon singularity, and that is a tower which births from the celestial ground. It appears to fade into being, towering into the dark empyreal sky.]
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Cruce: [As he walks, he realizes he is not moving at all. The Time Gear pieces are still at his side. He stops, pressing his palms into his head...] ... [Voices begin again.]
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"Everything is here..."
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"Everything is perfect..."
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"The stage is set..."
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"Hmhm... None have the power to fully resist... to fully meddle in this cause... None."
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"(Are you sure... Grandmaster...?)"
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"...Cruce Ifai..."
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"I am certain nothing will intervene..."
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"It will not be allowed..."
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"But it is not I who can truly subdue intervention..."
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"Nijiiro..."
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[Suddenly, Cruce moves forward but a nanometer. The world around him fails to accept this... He falls into the stars...]
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[He falls...]
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[Falling...]
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[Into infinity...]
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[Cruce falls almost endlessly, unaware of the concept of Time any longer.]
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[A glow...]
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[The fragments of the Time Gear rejoin together above him. He remains in a state of trance as he watches this Time Gear. He becomes blind as the light envelops the spacial air around him.]
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[Suddenly, the presence of unreality is gone. Having been entrance by the relic of Chronic, Cruce opens his eyes, no longer blind...]
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(C r u c e)
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-El Cajon.-

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[Cruce falls through the clouds of a stable atmosphere. He regains consciousness as he feels the realistic rushing against him. The pressure, the oxygen, the air, the light, the sun, the blue skies, the day... the movement of time. All of this revitalizes his senses as he falls. One aspect in particular alarms him.]
Cruce: [Now looking down at the distant ground. He falls from an incredible altitude.] Wha... Wh-what the--?! [Recognizing his weight is far lighter than he would be as a human, he inverts himself, practically catching himself in midair. Now flying, he looks down at terra firma.] ...When did this happen...? How'd I--...? ...[He notices that the air is warm. There are no trees. No snow. No crystals of any kind. Everything is as it once was in the past. Cruce, a Shaymin, stares down at his home...]
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Cruce: It's all back... Mm... Is it...? I'm still a Shaymin... [He shakes his head.] (...No, everything feels too real to be a dream... a... a dream... This was no dream... My own body is evidence that I... ..just might... be something of...)
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"Something..."
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"Of a Savior..."
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[With those words spoken aloud, Cruce descends to the earth quickly, unseen by the eyes of others. With the area clear, he spots his home. Hastily, he soars down to the grassy backyard he knows so well... As he comes closer to the ground, he slows his descent... Finally, he touches down. As soon as he does so, he reverts back into a human. The conversion is almost automatic...]
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Cruce: [Standing on the yellow-green grass in front of a tiny vegetable garden, he looks at his palms...] (What is it all...? What... was all of that supposed to be...?)
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[Then, a voice he recognizes.]
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Molly: Oh, Cruce. There you are. Kinda scared me for a second. [She stands with her hands on her hips near the porch table.] How long have you been out here?
Cruce: [He turns around to see his sister.] ...Sis...?
Molly: [She raises a brow.] ...Yes?
Cruce: [Aghast.] ...Um... that's... you...? ...Uh, nevermind. [Shakes his head.]
Molly: ...Okay. [Shrugs.] Listen, Mom wants you to do the trash today. She just let me know. You know the drill. [She leaves the backyard, heading back into the house.]
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Cruce: [Watches her return.] ... Sis... [He looks back into the blue sky.] Guys... you all out there...?
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"If you are..."
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"Talk to me again..."
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"I want to hear your voices..."
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"Help me complete myself..."
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"'Cause... I don't think I'm whole without you... Pachi... Nuvlora..."
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"Topher..."
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[Cruce shakes this looming thought and walks back to the house... As soon as he opens the screen door, he takes in the scent that is his house. He finds himself smiling... Then, a certain character turns the corner, walking into the kitchen with a solemn expression and freezing once his eyes meet Cruce...]
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Topher: You made it... [His eyes sparkle.]
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Cruce: [Speechless, he approaches Topher.]
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[The two wrap their arms around each other.]
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"...Do... Do you remember...?"
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"I do... I remember it all..."
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"...Do they...?"
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"It looks like we're alone in this world."
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December 6, 2199 A.D.. It is now a period of time before the anomalous collision of worlds. The events have escaped, or have not at all entered, the minds of the millions and the millions upon this Earth. Death has been undone. The moment the only intelligent life form in Reality faced proto-Apocalypse.

The anomaly born within the pretense.

And the pretense born within the anomaly.

May now stand out.

With crosses held high.

In this ethereal world.
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Billions and billions of years ago, an incredible event known as the Big Bang occurred in an empty void. This created the universe as they know it... It expanded to fill an indescribably enormous space... They who have been born within this universe continue to do all they can to study it, but they are ignorant of the truth. The truth that lies so close now... For, as they continue to expand their knowledge, the universe has grown to avoid them. And now, it will no longer be able to do so, for it has finally reached the cause of its existence.
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E T H E R E A L
C R O S S


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Well. I done it.
I done gone and finished the very first story...

Are there questions left unanswered? Perchance. But the saga continues next. Those are sure to be answered!

And even still, there are many more collisions to be had. Keep up with Ethereal Cross and see what fates await these two strange heroes~.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go pass out now. BUH-BYE!