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"Come before me if you dare. I will not hesitate."

0 · 797 views · located in The Other Side

a character in “Black and White”, as played by The Great Thundorz



Name: Sigma

Nickname: The Behemoth (Modern times have forgotten this)

Age: 1,290 (730 AD)

Gender: Appears Male

Height & Weight: 13 feet (Humanoid Form), 800 lbs (Humanoid Form). 80 feet (Behemoth Form), 32,000 lbs [16 tons] (Behemoth Form).

Additional Details: Carries two scars on his body, both of them upon his chest. Both of them serve as a reminder to the first two friends he ever made. He holds the memory of his master dear, in spite of what others would say. Normally, he only ever wears a cloak with a mask on.

Personality: Sigma is rather hard to get along with if he doesn't know you. If he does know you, he will act rather rough with you. There is only a few people he will ever act lightly upon, one of these few being Omicron, his best friend. There is also Beta, who has earned his respect by being the first and currently only normal human to have ever survived and complete his harsh training.

Likes & Dislikes: + Omicron (Best friend)
+ The Original Alpha (The only other Best friend he ever really had)
+ His Master (For whatever reason, he won't tell)
+ Beta (The only human to have earned his respect)
+ Physical Training (Doesn't really need to, but he does it anyway)
+ Fighting (What did you expect?)

- Lady Alpha (Ain't no rest for the wicked~)
- Upsilon (Backstabbing little b**ch)
- Demons (Idiots who need a good punching!)
- Pure Magic users (They never learn)
- Idiots (Obvious)
- His Behemoth Form (A form for a once primitive time)

Strengths: Personality wise, he tends to be loyal to those he trusts. He will always be there to support them, no matter what else happens. The rest should be obvious.

Weaknesses: Personality wise, if you should cross him or get on his bad side, you won't see the end of the day in one piece. The rest is not so obvious this time, perhaps some things are better left unsaid.

Favorite Color: Red (Obvious)

Hobbies: Physical training, keeping an eye out on the magical balance, kicking some demon butt, reading up on really old books, trying to learn the modern age.

Desires: Wants to see humanity become better than they are right now. Knows they can, knows some are trying, but come on guys, get your A game on!

Profession: Sigma of the Order of Grey!

History: 700 AD was the year The Wizard was born. Upon that day, The Black was forged from the depths of magic itself and so magic itself was considered broken. 730 AD, The Warrior challenges The Wizard, The Warrior gathered up Europe's finest warriors in order to combat The Wizard. The Wizard prepared a great legion of monsters, each of them powerful in their own right and caused great fear upon sight. The last, and most powerful of this legion, was forged in from of their very eyes! Towering over all was The Behemoth! Granted knowledge and strength by it's master, it charged forward, leaving only destruction in it's wake!

As The Wizard and The Warrior had their duel, each monster had it's own battle going on, each monster being held off from it's master or the others and being taken out. As both forces began to dwindle, both sides were unsure of who would win. But there was only one monster that remained in power, The Behemoth, one that saw no foe stand up to it's mighty power! The Wizard had made something truly unspeakable, and no hope set in sight for all those who dared laid eyes upon it. However, that changed when a man stood before The Behemoth and took it on alone. The Behemoth and the man clashed, with a battle just as big as The Wizard and The Warrior's, the two had an insane match of physical power against magical power!

Three days the event took, all the monsters had been slain but one. As The Behemoth finally fell, The Warrior had finally defeated The Wizard and sealed him away! All those who remained gathered around The Behemoth as it did not let out a single noise, ready to accept it's fate alongside it's kin. But the man and The Warrior decided to take in The Behemoth, though history would forever mark it as the execution of the final creation of The Wizard. The Behemoth did not understand why it was spared, perhaps it's master had something to do with it, for the two men had seemed to come upon an agreement based on something The Wizard had done.

After some rest and time, The Behemoth was granted a humanoid form to take, in order to blend "better" with the world around it. Given a cloak and a mask to hide it's identity, The Behemoth, The Warrior and the man who had defeated The Behemoth formed The Order of Grey to henceforth forever watch over the balance of magic. The Warrior became the first Alpha, the man who had defeated The Behemoth became Omicron and The Behemoth forever took on the title Sigma as it's new name. Alpha, Omicron and Sigma would gather others into The Order of Grey, but they had a deeper bond than the others, something Sigma was forever grateful for.

When The Original Alpha passed away, Sigma took it upon himself to watch over The Order of Grey in his place, since Sigma could not age nor fall victim to mortal things like disease. As time passed, The Behemoth was forgotten and Sigma made his own reputation for himself to move on from the battles. Though somewhere in his heart, he had made a vow to one day find out what happened with The Wizard. Surely there must be something he could find out on his own? Until then, many came to him for harsh physical training, having heard that he was the physically strongest among all the others. Many would come and go, but only one human would succeed in completing his training and gaining his respect.

Though Sigma was forged anew, he could never truly shake The Behemoth's grasp off of himself and so only shared this knowledge with a few people. Not even Gamma, one who was shrouded in magic and survived his harsh training, had learned of his secret. There are only two people currently who know of Sigma's secret as The Behemoth. The first is Omicron, one of his two original best friends and long time comrade among The Order of Grey. The second is Beta, the first and currently only true human in his eyes to have completed and survived his training. Beta had gained his respect for this feat, and for truly completing his training in his eyes, Beta was granted the information of his secret. No one else currently knows that Sigma and The Behemoth are one, even if you have seen Sigma's face behind the mask.

So begins...

Sigma's Story


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Yohan Belmont Character Portrait: Iron Kaiser Character Portrait: Sigma Character Portrait: Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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  1. This post was a collaboration between myself, MartinVole and Kagerou

    by The Great Thundorz

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The Order of Gray


Shiro closed up the book and put it down next to him, standing up to his feet as he smiled at Yohan. "Come with me. I have something to show you." Shiro lead Yohan back through the stairs from before, leading him up to one of the towers to show Yohan the state of things now. "See how the land looks to be healing? This is all due to your efforts. Since you overcame the Inner Demon of Despair, your world has been slowly taking some time to heal. Although, as a result, a new Inner Demon has risen up in the former's place. This one was quite a pain to contain for me. Nonetheless, it appears that the thing I said before will not happen quite yet. However, a new danger has emerged to threaten the castle."

"A new danger?" Yohan questioned Shiro, but as he did so, he felt the castle begin to shake furiously. Yohan could see it in the distance as it's wings flapped through the sky. As it got closer, it only got bigger and he could see the horrifying details that made it so fearsome. "No way, that's a dragon!" The beast let out a thunderous roar as it flew past the castle, the gusts of winds that it created sent Yohan flying down onto his back. Shiro remained perfectly still as he watched the dragon fly about, breathing fire into the air before flying off somewhere. "That wasn't here before!"

"I am already the conflicts within you have grown since the last time you were here. I am afraid that with the Inner Demon of Despair gone, your mind has allowed other things to rise up against you. It is sad to say, but we may have to awaken him soon enough." Shiro turns to Yohan and grabs his arm, quickly pulling him up to his feet. "But that can wait. I will keep this beast at bay, but in time it may become a threat to you and the two others who are still connected. This dragon reminds me of a conflict I was in a long time ago."

"Tell me something." Yohan began to speak. "You said before that when you had arrived, the door was already open. You can't use the key as well as I can, and yet you have no problem sealing away things or fending off beasts that appear here. If you were a part of my world, you wouldn't be able to have such a unique stance within it. Who are you, really? Or for that matter, what are you?" Shiro looked over at Yohan and let out a slow sigh, looking up at the sky.

"Think of me like a guardian angel. I'm here for a reason, and I know of only one other person who has a guardian angel. Speaking of, you must be weary not to come into conflict with that man. He will have a golden aura. Should you see that gold aura, run. Do not even think about fighting him. You must run as if your life depends on it." Dark clouds began to roll in as Shiro began to walk back down the steps. "I've said enough. I can tell you the full story another time. I think I've kept you here long enough. I must show you one more thing before you leave, and hopefully, we will not have to use it anytime soon."

It was business as usual. The bell had rung out and The Order of Gray's members had been summoned forth. With the exception of Epsilon, for obvious reasons, everyone had been summoned without issue. Upon taking their seats, Lady Alpha walked in with Omega by her side as always. Lady Alpha wore only the most beautiful white robes that could be made. Though her skin was unusually pale, she did not wear any makeout or try to make herself look "pretty" to stand out. Omega pulls out her seat and when she sits down, pushes her in before sitting down in it's own seat. Omega largely remained unknown due to always being seen wearing that strange armor. The only thing that reminded them that it wasn't just a robot was the long pink hair that could be seen coming out the back of the helmet.

"Welcome." Lady Alpha spoke with a soft tone that made her sound quiet, though usually one could understand and hear her just fine. "We have a lot to discuss today, so before we begin, I would like to see if any of you has anything to say before we start. Once we start, I expect full cooperation and attention on the matters we discuss, and no distractions." Lady Alpha turned a glaring gaze over to Delta. Delta gave up a lazy peace sign with his hand before relaxing in his chair again. Lady Alpha rolled her eyes as he did this. "Ugh. You know what I mean. Get it out of your systems now before we start, okay?"

The doors suddenly slammed open. "Sorry I'm late!" A voice rung out, which most would recognize as Gamma's. "It's a funny story-" Gamma was cut off by a glare from Lady Alpha. "Don't get your panties in a bunch! You said get it out now, did you not?" Gamma had on a cloak with the hood covering her face. One could tell she was spent physically as she took her seat next to Delta. She gave him a smile and said a quiet hello. Gamma then returned her attention to the oh so glorious Lady Alpha. Gamma's disdain for the woman was known among other members, but Gamma kept it in check. The woman waited patiently for the meeting to begin.

"Mmm, yes, greetings, a pleasure as usual," a deep voice reverberates through the room. The origin of this voice was a hulking figure already seated, waiting patiently. He was wearing a golden oni mask and dressed in a rather clean gray business suit. This was Omicron, a rather peculiar man, to say the least, if this colossus could be simply called a man.

He stares forward with glowing eyes, like burning embers, difficult to ascertain who he was looking towards, if anyone in particular. He was somewhat distracted today, but did his best to cover it. "Greetings, Gamma," he says calmly upon her loud entrance.

Lady Alpha couldn't help but let out an audible sigh. Omega ended up patting her back for her, with Lady Alpha shaking her head. "Of course the suspended fool is the late one. Bravo, Gamma." Lady Alpha rolls her eyes and looks around to the rest. "Anybody else wish to step forward with something?" But no one did. "Very well. Let us begin then with the first matter. We have been watching over The Other Side and Gaia for centuries now. We all know the rising conflicts that have occurred over the ages. Starting with before The Order's foundation itself, when The Wizard and The Blue Haired Warrior clashed. Or the time Gaia's influence brought about conflict on The Other Side, causing the first Sukodo Emperor to rise and form the Sukodo Empire from said conflict."

"But the worst example yet, to me at least, was the battle a hundred years ago. The one that took place a hundred years ago. The battle that almost reached Gaia and attempted to destroy it. When the man declaring himself as Dracul came out with an army of demons and laid a path of destruction in his wake. Were it not for the two men who were chosen by The White and The Black to mold them into what we know them as today, Gaia would be in ruins. But conflict has never truly ceased since any of those times. Mu!" Lady Alpha's sudden burst of the word caused Mu to flinch in his seat. "Your Dominion's name, it's Scan Chan, right? I need you to use Scan Chan to give me a report on the incidents I requested earlier before this meeting."

"Yes, yes, of course my lady." Mu seemed shorter compared to the rest of them. Though Mu had the strangest googles that made his eyes look bigger than they actually were. Mu's hair had long since turned white, his skin wrinkled and his body sometimes shook when he worked for too long on one thing. But that didn't stop Mu from doing what he loved, and he wore a suit of tech of his own design to let it be known what had taken his heart for so many years. With blue lines that ran over his body that occasionally glowed, Mu raised up his hands and wiggled his fingers before speaking again. "Scan Chan!"

Scan Chan appeared before Mu in the form of a monitor with a keyboard set out before him. The monitor and keyboard both looked holographic and green to an extent, though both were see-through. With a big wide grin, Mu began to type away as the monitor quickly began to change with it. "Regarding the number of The White and The Black infections finding potential candidates on Gaia, I have determined that the rate has grown by 37% in just the last decade. Most recently, there appears to have been several outbreaks of The White and The Black across the USA alone! The most recent incident we could find of this was a town called Timberland."

"Thank you for that, Mu." Lady Alpha spoke as Scan Chan faded away. "It is not just Gaia either that faces conflict right now. The many factions of The Other Side have always been tense with one another. We live in an Age of Tension, this I will not deny to you. We are meant to be keepers of balance, the people who bring peace between the magical and non-magical. Yet we cannot intervene if it does no harm to the greater good. But what we potentially face right now is far worse than just a mere battle or two. The Sukodo Empire, The Legion of Demons, Epsilon's Dark Wizards, The Dragonborn, among many others! They are all getting ready to attack someone, and with each side growing in power by the day, someone will launch an attack that will start a massive war unlike any seen on The Other Side before it."

"As you said, we cannot intervene much." Gamma said nonchalantly. "What do you suggest we do? Prevent one of the sides from gaining power? If so, which one? What's your plan, oh great leader?" Gamma glared at the woman from underneath her hood. "While it's in everyone's best interests to ya know...not have a war, how can we prevent it without violating what the Order is about in the first place?"

"Well then... there certainly are a lot of anomalies happening around Timberland, aren't there?" Omicron asks in rhetoric, tapping his fingers together patiently as he puffs on a cigar. With the creaking of his chair, he reaches down and starts to pull out some papers with his index finger and thumb, and then splays it across the table. On them are rather complex printouts of maps with marks on them and reports. Along with this is a few pictures, some of the Hound of Despair from Saiph's perspective. "Here's something to add to your data, Mu. Cross-world fluctuations seem to be happening quite frequently with this place and The Other Side, perhaps too frequently, wouldn't you agree? Lets call these crescendo points. To be frank, we are long passing the point of coincidence, and if a war were to break out, with this amount of instability, well... I'll leave it to everyone's imagination on what that entails."

Mu gathered up the papers and looked them over. "Ah, yes." Scan Chan could be seen forming over Mu's googles now, taking a look over the pictures and such. "It seems that, ironically, Timberland was founded by magical creatures. Even before that, Timberland has been known for being a hotspot for magic. It seems a lot of people there have always emerged with the potential to wield magic. How strange, considering that multiple people there have been chosen by The Black. My lady, I fear we may soon see The White and The Black clashing on Gaia. If The Emperor was correct in his report to us, that vigilante group he plans to have form could lead to a group forming in response."

"I understand, Mu." Lady Alpha spoke. "It appears that we may be facing people with connections. Sometimes these connections were formed to spread out an individual's power to others, though the person would eventually regain their power while the chosen kept their powers as well. Other times it was to simply gather people under their wing, as if to grant people the power of The White or The Black before the connection would eventually break. Though I imagine any connections have been recent, and the individuals who were chosen have not received training yet. Without this training, they will by now be starting to receive side effects. These chosen individuals will start to experience shifts in personality, they may see memories that are not their own and most for certainly, they will start to recall people they may not have met before. We will need two volunteer's to go forth to Timberland to find these people and train them before they have such experiences at the wrong time."

"I will go." Beta stated to the rest. The strongest human in The Order of Gray, Beta mostly kept himself concealed within the usual white robes of The Order of Gray. "I have business to take care of there. I will bring Delta with me just in case. If I find anyone with magic causing trouble, I'll handle it myself. I know you and Delta aren't on good terms, plus if something comes up beyond my control, he can help me out with it."

"Indeed. I trust Beta with my life." Delta spoke up. Unlike the others, he wore a gray robe over himself, standing out just that little bit among the white robes most of the members commonly wore. "I will help Beta with the training of these individuals, whoever they may be. However, from what I can tell, we have someone there who is not naturally from Gaia. I will look more into the matter when I arrive, but that is just my theory for now. Although I do wish to report that Epsilon was spotted looking for one of his artifacts in Timberland. Knowing Epsilon, he used the opportunity to go out and find information ahead of anyone else in Timberland. It's possible he is setting up influence in there now, without us knowing it. Hopefully that is not the case, but if it is, we may have more people showing up in Timberland."

"Epsilon is a danger we must not overlook. He is not only skilled with his abilities, he is smart and cunning. When he left our order, he managed to win in his fight against Delta." Lady Alpha put her hands together. "Beta, Delta. I will leave it to you then. As for the matter of dealing with the rising tension..." Lady Alpha's eyes glared over to Gamma at this. "It has always been our interest to remain as neutral as possible. With that being said, the Legion of Demons have always been our natural enemy. We have always fought against them, and they have always done the same with us. Should they cause any problems directly, we will have no choice but to make them targets. The Emperor seems to be making his move to prepare for the long term, while the others are simply gathering in forces and power. Either way, if we have to make a stand in this war, I have no objections to that."

"If I may, Lady Alpha." Chi stood up, one of the newer members. Chi had taken his position with pride after the retirement of the former Chi, however, Chi had proven at times to be reckless and new to the game. "This is not the time for me to be sitting here. With the growing conflicts on both Gaia and The Other Side, I propose that I be assigned to The Mage Killer. Whoever it is, this ruthless murderer has been targeting people with magic and I will no longer stand for it. Send me after this fiend, I have already started to research on this criminal and will personally see to it they are brought to justice!"

"Very well, Chi. I can't stop you. This Mage Killer is the one who's been behind incidents that the news keep bringing up anyway. Do what you must." Chi, Delta and Beta all vanish from sight at these words. "Upsilon, continue to observe Epsilon's every action and report it back to me. Gamma, go back to being suspended already before I send Omega after you. Omicron, continue to do what you do. I feel you are doing a good job, unlike certain people. Sigma, I need you to investigate something for me. Mu, continue to use Scan Chan to find any information you can. Everyone else, do what you do best. I need some time to decide on the matter of how to proceed with these conflicts we have been seeing of late. I will call everyone back in a week's time. Dismissed!"

Upsilon appeared in a cave after the meeting had ended. What nonsense, he thought to himself. There was only one person worthy to his eyes and that person was nowhere near the same league as anyone else. That man was a prodigy, he knew this from the beginning that he would be the one to save them all. Upsilon smiled to himself, gripping his staff as best as he could. He tolerated the others only because he had no other choice. His position in The Order had to remain for just a little longer. Damn that Omicron! He was too nosy for his own good, looking into matters that didn't concern him! It made Upsilon furious with rage, he didn't like how The Order were so close to finding out his secret plans!

Upsilon moved further into the cave, his staff hitting the ground as he walked. At least it wasn't all for nothing, he now had the information he wanted to confirm. The fools knew nothing! Not a single one of them knew what was best for the world, they were all fools. Upsilon would make sure this war would happen with or without them. He suspected Lady Alpha might try to make her stance in the coming flames, but she was too smart for her own good! She must of suspected something was up and sent others to investigate further into matters! No matter, he would find a way to involve The Order soon enough. Upsilon couldn't wait until he could execute his plans, the thought of it brought joy to his old heart. "One hundred years I've been searching for you again. I may be old now, but you were at your prime even after so many years had passed by you." Upsilon talked to himself as he moved on.

"I looked upon you like a God! Your majestic hair flowing behind you, the menacing aura that has never been seen since, the way you stood against the world and sought to brought it down with your forces. I haven't forgiven anyone for letting you die the way you did. Oh, but don't worry, I will find you again. I know you are somewhere in this world again, someday I will find you and have you brought to me. All I need is the sign, the sign that you have returned! Oh, the day will come, do not worry. We will meet again, just you wait. I have kept myself alive only to see you again. Not like you can listen to me anyway, but it's always good to talk as if you were here. I still have your precious little orb, I have kept it safe for you, my one true master!" Upsilon made several growls, among other noises, before finally calming down and walking over to one of his apprentices.

"Ah, Upsilon, sir!" The apprentice was shocked to see his master return. "I had thought the meeting would last longer, but nonetheless, Epsilon wishes to speak to you." He could see Upsilon not even look in his direction, continuing to move despite his old body slowing him down these days. "Uh, sir. About that thing you wanted me to investigate into. We have not yet been able to find the exact thing you mentioned. I apologize, sir, but..." He watched as Upsilon stopped moving. "It seems impossible at this rate. We have been searching for years, and no results have come up. It may be he just isn't coming back this time."

"BE SILENT!" A scythe's blade ripped itself out of the orb on Upsilon's staff, the scythe reaching over to hold itself over the apprentice's neck. The apprentice was unable to move, frozen by fear for his own life as he saw Upsilon stare at him with that cold gaze in his eyes. "He is somewhere, I know he is! I will find him, and I will have him! He promised, he promised me he would return! He would not lie to ME!" Upsilon pulled the scythe's blade away carefully, the blade sinking into the orb as Upsilon turned his back to the apprentice. "Search harder. It doesn't matter who they are. A baby, a child, an adult or an elderly. He MUST be somewhere! Find the mark, the mark is the key, the key." Upsilon began to move again, with the apprentice collapsing to his knees as he gripped his chest tightly. "The mark is the key. The mark is the key. The mark is the key." Upsilon kept repeating to himself in whispers. It was the only thing he looked forward to these days.

The setting changes from Timberland to The Other Side


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sigma Character Portrait: Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait: Character Portrait:
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Another meeting, another reason to hate on the current Order of Gray. What a mess they were in now, once the most respected people in the magical society now were just looked upon as keepers of the peace. It was nonsense, they were practically a joke at this point to him. "Lady" Alpha next sat right with him, why not just call her Alpha like the previous Alpha's before her had been called? Beta was his student, seeing him having grown so far from the old days made Sigma nostalgic of the old days when Beta was younger. Gamma was being snarky with Alpha as usual, no surprise there.

Delta was a man Sigma held the highest respect for, though in recent meetings he had begun to take on a more laid back role. It was Alpha's fault, really. She had tried to force Delta over the years to bend to her will, but the more she pushed, the more he resisted. She must of said something after a meeting and he didn't take it well. Still, Delta was a man he and the others could trust with their lives. Epsilon was a different story though. For whatever reason, Alpha held his seat out even though he had left in not the most polite fashion. Epsilon had since started a Dark Wizard group and refused to attend any meetings since his departure. Whatever Epsilon had discovered had forced him to leave The Order entirely. Sigma had no right to tell him to stay, but it also wasn't his business to go snooping around like Epsilon had. If Alpha should prove a problem to him, he would be the first to be on the case.

Most of the others looked bored whenever Mu began to talk. Mu was like that wise grandfather you had that would always invest his time into researching new things, but would often fall asleep during the middle of things. Luckily Scan Chan could operate during Mu's nap sessions so it all worked out in the end. Omicron held a sort of air about him as usual, however he seemed to be taking an interest in this Timberland. One of his kids must of gotten involved for him to have done his work so quickly, it was the only thing Sigma could think of that would lead Omicron to have gotten interested ahead of time. Sigma couldn't really tell what most of them were thinking or were ever going to do, but he could sense it. The tension that was building up when Chi spoke up. Chi was a good kid, but he didn't realize some of the members had gotten a little picky about handling things. Lucy for Chi no one went in for the kill, but Sigma knew one of these days The Order was going to have to bring it's fist down some of the more unruly members.

Omega was quiet as always at the meetings, staying by Alpha's side like a dog. He could only guess what Alpha had done to Omega in order to make it so obedient to her, the day this Omega had been brought in was the day Sigma had started to watch Alpha with a suspicious eye. Epsilon and him may not see eye to eye on everything, but he knew Epsilon was onto something to suspect Alpha was doing something to The Order for her own gain. Without anything coming to light, however, there was nothing Sigma could really do about it. Sure, there were the times when Alpha would seem suspicious or her actions could be questioned, but she was sneaky in how she kept her true intentions hidden from the others. One day, she would slip up and be brought to the justice she rightfully deserved to be put into.

Upsilon had once been a man he could respect in his ambitions. At one point in time he had been hailed as one of the greatest Dark Wizards to have come, and the only reason he had been brought into The Order was to maintain fear through his power. He had gotten to know Upsilon though, and over the years he got used to Upsilon's ways. He reminded him of Epsilon in a lot of ways, though Upsilon was Epsilon's teacher so it made a lot of sense he'd see what Upsilon formerly had having rubbed off onto Epsilon. But ever since a certain point had passed, Uspilon had been slowly grading and the process had been painful to watch. At the current meeting, Upsilon looked the worst he ever had. His once great body reduced to a withered old form that made him seem tiny when at his peak he was someone who could stand with pride. Knowing the old Upsilon though, he wasn't finished and would probably make a grand return one day. This much Sigma had always suspected to be true in his heart.

When the meeting had been dismissed, they were all told to return in one week. He wondered who had come from The Sukodo Empire to inform Alpha of this new vigilante plan The Emperor had in mind. He could ask more about that another time though, for now he had to go see Beta and Delta before they left for Gaia. Taking out one of The Order's emblems on a peculiar stone, he focused his mind on it before suddenly appearing in front of Beta and Delta. "Oh, I will never get used to moving around like that." Beta and Delta quickly helped Sigma remain standing before backing away to look upon the mask and cloak he always wore. "I suspected you boys would still be here."

"Ha, that's funny, calling us boys Sigma." Delta responded with a smile. "Knowing you've been around for so long though, I can let it pass." Delta seemed to be one of the few members of The Order he knew who could manage a smile even when times were coming to a rough point. "I know why you've come though. You want to warn us to be careful in Timberland, right? Don't worry about that so much. You put too much stress on yourself these days, Sigma. You should take a vacation sometime and just get the chance to relax."

"As much as I would love to take some time to rest for myself, I must tend to The Order first. Actually, I came to warn you two to be on the alert about this Mage Killer going around." Sigma decided to sit down on the ground as he let out a heavy sigh. "This Mage Killer, whoever it is, is casting doubt on those who use magic. Whether it be true magic or The White or The Black, it doesn't matter. Should this Mage Killer be revealed on Gaia's media, it could start the opposite idea to The Emperor's vigilante plans."

"Ah, so you mean the equivalent of super-villains." Beta put a hand up to his chin as he thought it over. "It would be troubling to see a rise of people like that. Whether magical or not, we could see a mass slaughtering of innocent people or those who would get in the crossfire. From what I know about this serial killer, they've done all they can to make a low profile for themselves. That's why we haven't been hot on this person's trail, but they could cause a mass panic sometime soon and chaos would spread them there."

"It's not just that I am worried about." Sigma looked down at his hands and tightened his grip slightly with them. "Dark Wizards, Demons, even intelligent magical creatures could all notice this and start to get more bold. Dark Wizards appearing to sweep their magic unopposed, lower Demons getting more bold and attempting to bring their more powerful masters over to Gaia in order to take it over. Magical creatures could start going on a rampage for humans throughout Gaia. This Mage Killer must be brought down quickly. If Chi fails in his mission, I may have no choice but to get involved myself."

"We understand, Sigma." Delta spoke up as he put a hand on Sigma's shoulder. "Don't worry about it. We won't allow this Mage Killer to get any attention and for others to use the opportunity against us. We may not be seen as in our glory days, but we are still The Order of Gray. We will keep the peace, no matter who seeks to break it. Beta and I must go and prepare our things for a temporary stay in Timberland. Just don't go straining yourself Sigma, that's the last thing we need right now." With that, Beta and Delta vanished from sight. Sigma could only sigh and close his eyes, hoping for the best.


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Destruction or Harmony?


Sigma didn't like the idea of leaving everything up to Beta and Delta, but he didn't really have a choice right now. With everyone seeming to be at each other's throats, he had to do his part to help out. Moving out through The Other Side was never a problem for him, he had a lot more experience and knowledge about it than most due to his time being alive. The Sukodo Empire would be the first he would look into. He wouldn't be entering it's capital today, but rather one of the inner walls that surrounded it. It wasn't the only location to live if you served The Sukodo Empire, but it was the heart of the entire empire.

The Sukodo Empire's Capital, Seishin, held five walls that were each built over the generations to further protect it's heart. Over time these walls had been improved upon as the technology within the empire grew, attacks from above could no longer work, attacking from below could no longer work, it held a strong defense but it seemed to lack a strong offense to push back the enemy. It looked so different from how it used to when it first started, that's just how time worked. As Sigma prepared to arrive within the first wall, he heard a loud roar being given off nearby. His attention now being redirected towards the source, he quickly sped off in it's direction.

When he stopped to look at the situation, he found a large beast standing over a group of citizens who were about to re-enter within the walls just as he was about to. The beast lashed out with it's tails and struck away any nearby soldiers, knocking them aside without doing much harm to them. But Sigma knew that look well, it's prey wasn't the soldiers, but the innocent people they were protecting. He could hear them crying out for help, the soldiers being too weak to stop the beast's tails from knocking them away. Sigma's heart never swayed in the face of danger, no matter what people or animals did, he would always be ready to protect people regardless of who they were. As long as they were in danger, that's all that mattered to him. He couldn't be everywhere at once, but he did his best regardless.

Sigma moved forward with such a burst of speed that the outburst didn't shake the ground or cause cracks, instead he almost seemed to glide through the air as if he was some kind of bird. There was a gentle grace for Sigma when he moved like this, the people who saw him move past weren't blown away or knocked back but instead felt relaxing wind hit them. Sigma had to ask himself time and again if the world would ever be truly ready to accept the gracious power that coursed through his body now? As Sigma landed in front of the beast, he spread his arms out and tightened his hands into fists as the tails now began striking out at him.

Sigma's movements were careful and yet unreadable, each strike he gave out against the attacks of the tails served only to knock them away. As the people and soldiers watched in awe, they saw a robed figure with a mask who seemingly came in with two arms, and yet now when he attacked the way he did, they saw him having four arms on each side and all four arms were moving and doing something else from the others. The people found it impossible to tell if Sigma was moving so fast that they could only follow his movements through phantom strikes, or if Sigma's power was so great that to normal people he was using eight arms right now to attack with. Whatever the case, the multi-tailed beast was confused by how this one figure was able to stop it's fast striking tails. The beast leaped back away from Sigma to glare over at him, it's five tails preparing to attack again as Sigma stood still like a perfect statue for just a few seconds.

That's when Sigma began to move again, and this time, the awe that was felt before quickly turned into intimidation. The beast not only saw it, but felt it as it's body shook from what it felt coming from the being before it. Sigma's arms were slowly moving around him, as if he was performing some kind of dance in preparation for a meditation. It was like watching someone breathing calmly in and out, and yet, time itself seemed to be slowing down for the beast as it tried to observe Sigma's movements. Sigma finally stops with his body having now entered into a stance, two fingers on his left hand facing up while two fingers on his right hand were facing down. As Sigma's arms grew further apart from each other, he slide his right leg back and his front leg forward, all movement eventually grinding to a halt as Sigma merely waited for the beast to act now. Would it act on it's instinctive fear and risk attacking even though it could mean death? Or would it run instead, fleeing and fighting to live for another day? The beast's choice became clear in a flash!

The beast had leaped forward, roaring out as it's five tails all prepared for a different strike from a different angle at Sigma to catch him off guard. Sigma read through this and understood clearly what the beast intended to do, only moving forward as all five tails struck each other! The beast could only register Sigma being in front of it at the last second, unable to move as it saw Sigma strike out right his left palm into it's chest, causing a great rumble to course throughout it's body! The people watched as the beast's mouth remained agape, it's eyes rolling briefly into the back of it's head as though it was dead. That's when Sigma quietly spoke out two words. "Harmonic Melody." The beast's eyes soon returned to normal, as it stared at Sigma now while he pulled his arm back and stood calmly, reaching up to lightly pat the top of the creature's head. "Leave these people alone. There is food to the south of here. Go there and you can eat to your heart's content."

The people watched as the beast began to walk away without another look over towards them, the beast having lost all interest in them! When the beast was fully out of sight, the people rejoiced by cheering out and gave their thanks to Sigma. "Destruction only causes more destruction." Sigma told himself, the people and soldiers not even hearing his words as they began to quickly head back inside the wall. "Only through peace can there be joy to be found. Those who walk the path of destruction shall end up destroying themselves." Sigma clapped his hands together and gave a quick bow to what appeared to be no one. "I give thanks to my master and my friends."

"My, my. Such a beautiful performance." An unknown voice spoke out to Sigma after he gave his bow, his mask turning slowly over to find another figure with a mask similar to his own. Though their attire's were another matter entirely, could this man be some kind of traveler? "Forgive me for intruding, but I saw you save those people just now." The unknown figure gave a short clapping of hands at him. "You must be Sigma. I have heard such brutal descriptions of you, everyone seems to love spreading rumors about the strongest being within The Order of Gray being some violent warrior who's strike alone could shatter mountains. But what I just saw destroyed all notions of those rumors, I am pleased to know that."

"You have heard of me then?" Sigma questioned the strange figure before him. "Not many have been able to see me in action. Those that do usually do not recall what they see. It is too fast for them to register, I do not blame them for that though. I do what I must to save the people and the beast, that is all." Sigma's hand pointed towards the figure's direction. "But you have not yet introduced yourself. Tell me, who are you, strange man? You do not seem like you are from The Sukodo Empire, or else why would you be wearing such foreign attire here?"

"Ah, yes!" The figure's hands clapped together and he bowed from the waist towards Sigma. "Forgive me for getting ahead of myself. I am known as Jinn!" The figure gestured to himself and bowed his head briefly. "Some of my friends jokingly call me The Djinn, but that name does not suit who I am. But call me whichever you see fit, it does not matter to me. You wish to go inside, don't you?" Jinn gestured behind him towards the wall. "Even for someone such as you, Sigma, cannot simply enter within any of the walls without a card of identification." Jinn chuckled lightly and spread out his hands, cards poofing up within his hands as he began to shuffle through them. "But fear not. I shall grant you entry using my card should you promise me only one thing. I wish to travel with you while you are inside. I have long wanted to see you, and I wish to learn more about you while you are here. It must be fate that I got to meet you just as I was about to enter inside!"

"Fate, huh?" Sigma commented, though he didn't wish to put doubt on the man's beliefs. "Yes, fate must be kind to you this day. So that is all it will take, huh?" Sigma couldn't help but bellow out a laugh. "Such an unusual trade, but I love it! Oh, you are truly an interesting man, Jinn. Very well, I accept these terms of yours. You shall journey with me while I am here. But while you are learning more about me, I wish to learn more about you in return. You didn't think I wouldn't be observant, did you? If you are learning about me, I will learn about you. It is only fair, since you already seem to know much about me."

"Yes, yes, of course!" Jinn raised up his hand and all the cards but one faded away with a cloud of smoke. Holding up the card in his left hand, Jinn turned and began to walk towards the wall with Sigma. "As expected of the mysterious Sigma! Though I do hope we can be good friends and help each other out here. I came here in search of something, and I wish to see if it is still here or not. I can only imagine you are here on business reasons, but that's fine. We can help each other while we are here together! It's the start of something beautiful! Yes, something beautiful indeed!"



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Seishin was arguably even more beautiful than the last time Sigma had fully seen it. Walking through it with Jinn had not been what Sigma had expected today, but he didn't mind the company. Watching over Jinn had been an delight, to say the least. Jinn seemed to know how to talk to anyone they came across, it made Jinn look like the perfect fellow to encounter. Sigma was glad he had encountered Jinn before anyone else, he could feel it clear as daylight coming from him. Something was just too perfect about this man.

Sigma himself remained rather quiet and observant, letting Jinn do all of the talking to others for the both of them. Jinn could switch between languages like it was nothing, so sometimes Sigma couldn't fully understand what Jinn was saying when he just flipped that switch of his. When the Jinn and him were able to finally resume going on their course, he couldn't help but notice Jinn chuckling. "Something funny to you?" Sigma decided to drop the question.

"It's just the people here, that's all." Jinn responded. "This isn't the main part of the capital, that's why the tone here is so much more casual. Even though they realize they could be attacked at any minute, they simply continue on and enjoy themselves. It's a life of luxury." Jinn put a hand up to his mask. "It makes me feel great to be alive, if you get what I am saying. To be embraced without concern or be judged by the eyes of those who stand above us. Wouldn't you agree, my friend?"

"Yes, I know the feeling all too well. That is why I hide like this. You say we are similar, yet we couldn't be more different. The fact you only wear a mask and I hide my entire body says much." Sigma put his own hand up to his mask. "Personally, I wouldn't mind being able to walk around without being scorned by others. But that day is not today, my friend. Tell me though, why do you stay out in the open like this?" The question caused Jinn to stop, with Sigma stopped a few steps ahead of Jinn.

"My apologies, but I do not believe I heard you correctly." Jinn crosses his arms over his chest. "Out in the open, you say? I wish for a clarification, if you do not mind."

"Of course." Sigma turned to fully face Jinn. "You can't hide it from me, ever since you talked about your mask from before. You put on a facade for all of those around you, you like to ease your way into people by appealing to what they like most. You acted "nice" around me though, not kissing up to my feet and instead gave me a glimpse into the man behind the mask. I'm sure others have caught onto this as well. So tell me, why? Why create a mask at all when you could just be brutally honest with everyone about yourself?"

"Oh my, oh dear." Jinn raised a hand up to rest on the side of his mask. "Let's see, how to word the answer. I appeal to the common folk because they are easy prey. The higher I see my prey on the food chain, the more I respect them and show my gratitude for that. I am one who loves to play around with his food before eating it. If someone gets my blood boiling, I show them my respect for them by not holding anything back. I consider my powers to be a blessing and a curse. It's so easy to get people to make a wish that I don't usually have to make a wish myself. It's how my Dominion, Wishmaker, works." Jinn's mask tilts upward to look up at the sky.

"There are people out there, even those who consider themselves the highest tier of prey, who would so easily make a wish. I found two people on the opposite sides of the coin to compare to. One was just too eager to make wishes for me, so I considered him to be easy prey. He wasn't anything special, in fact, he only became special because I helped him get there. He was a lowly criminal who just happened to get one lucky roll of the dice. But then there was the other boy. When I found him, I looked into his eyes and saw a reflection of his soul for just a moment. He had overcome the negative feelings that had engulfed him and told me everything about himself through his fists. It makes me want to make a wish to fight him again as I am now. But he needs time to be molded into a proper fighter, unlike the first. Once he has his ideals set and his fighting resolve in check, then he will be a fighter truly worth defeating." Jinn looked back to Sigma and chuckled.

"My apologies for getting off track there, but I believe it helps give you a more clear answer. The people who would fall into the desire of wishes are nothing more than scum for me to use to my enjoyment. But the rare few who can overcome that desire and say 'I don't need to make a wish' are the people I hold respect the most. I know you wouldn't fall into making a wish if it came to it, but I can also tell your heart wavers. You have desires like a human would, I think that's very interesting for a man like yourself to have." Jinn spread out his arms and let out a slow and calming breath. "Well? Now that you know the truth, are you going to stop me from doing what I came here to do today? You must of caught on that I am not simply here to tag along for fun."

"I will not." Sigma turned his back to Jinn. "Come now. If you really are curious to know more about me, you won't mind following me around a bit more, no?" Sigma didn't wait for a response, beginning to walk away with the Jinn following suit in his stead. Sigma didn't mind having his back to this Jinn fellow, it felt comforting that the Jinn was at least honest about himself. Now the question remained on what Jinn planned to do here, but it didn't matter at the moment. He would keep Jinn busy for a little while longer, hopefully he was preventing something sinister.


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Although only a mere day had passed since the both of them had entered into Seishin, both of them had been observing the other's actions carefully. Yet, despite all of their attempts to find a flaw within the other, neither could deduce the other's true intentions. Though the two continued to act like friends, the mind game had long been set since the first encounter. Jinn had made the first move towards Sigma, and Sigma accepted by making a move back. Both of them now sought a checkmate, yet they both refused to be the first to slip up to give the other the chance. Would trapping the other work? Could it work? Who could call on the other's bluff in time to call checkmate? Needless to say, it was tiring on both ends to keep up the game.

Sigma's plan was simple: He merely needed to wait for the Jinn to make a shady move and he would be able to catch him. Sigma thought he had it in the bag, after all this Jinn fellow had practically admitted to being up to something. Though Sigma observed Jinn's every action, he came up short when nothing Jinn did or said after that point conflicted with the image he set up to others. Sigma realized at this point that Jinn had made a clever move and had openly gave Sigma a free shot at him then and there in order to lure him into a trap. The bait was clever, recklessly attacking him among Seishin could stir up trouble. He was on Sukodo Empire grounds, not Order of Gray's. Jinn must of offered to go with him in order to set him up for a greater fall. Sigma pulled back for now, remaining on the defensive afterword. Jinn didn't make any aggressive actions for the rest of Monday though, which caught Sigma even more off guard. That just meant he had to expect the unexpected now.

Jinn's plan, on the other hand, was very complicated and had multiple layers and steps to them. He had come to Seishin in order to do what needed to be done, that much was simple enough. Yet when he saw Sigma take on that beast and calm it down without harming it had piqued Jinn's interest. Although his form was still recovering from Yohan and Saiph's attacks on him, he realized he had hit the jackpot and now could observe Sigma himself in person. The friendly act had merely been a facade to lure him in, get him comfortable, let his guard down. Sigma surprised him when he revealed he had seen something was up with Jinn's intentions. Jinn was shocked, he thought Sigma was a book that was easy to read, yet here he was, contradicting that by the next page! Jinn felt he needed to respect his equal by admitting his true character. Of course this too was a trap, by revealing himself out in the open Sigma could very well take action then and there. If he had, Jinn would of defended himself and had the fight turn into a ruckus, causing panic and alarm among the people in order to make the Order of Gray look bad and get Sigma in trouble.

Yet, he did not take any sort of physical action against him. Jinn felt he had hit a dead-end with his plans, suddenly Sigma was on the offensive now and he had lost a piece of the game without knowing it! His bait had been taken and ripped off in a violent matter, Sigma had nearly crushed his hopes of stirring up trouble with him. Jinn concluded that the best course of action from here would be to wait and bide his time. If he could tear down Sigma's patience and get him to act on emotion rather than logic, he could still win this. As the day came to a close, however, Sigma had done nothing! What was he planning over there, to take him out in his sleep?! It was impossible, Sigma wasn't the type to strike his opponent in the back! Jinn was angry with himself and Sigma, himself because he had failed to make Sigma act and cause a ruckus, and with Sigma because he had failed to take the obvious bait when he had the chance and now Sigma was just toying with him! Jinn cursed in his head multiple times in multiple ways, what else was there left to do? The time they spent together was shortening and he was almost out of time himself!

Sigma had somehow managed to sleep peacefully through the night, despite the fact that Jinn could easily stab him in the back while he wasn't looking. But when he woke up, everything seemed fine. He did a quick check while meditating, he felt nothing, he saw nothing, he sensed nothing wrong at all. The only thing really out of place was Jinn no longer being there, he must of slipped out sometime during the night. Sigma took this as a chance to leave the room, thanking the people who managed the hotel and leaving a tip before leaving himself. He didn't make a single stop during his time moving, this was the moment he had been waiting for. It didn't matter where Jinn was or what he was doing at the moment, Sigma could now continue his objective without Jinn standing in his way. As Sigma moved, he could see that the morning was filled with a lot less people than when he arrived yesterday. That was good, it meant it would take him less time to get to where he needed to go. Sigma didn't consider this checkmate just yet, he had to wait a little longer for that.

As Sigma fell asleep during the night, Jinn suddenly stumbled upon an excellent idea. Making his way out of the shared room in the hotel and slipping outside of Seishin with relative ease and in such little time, Jinn made a phone appear from smoke in his hand and called up a number. "Yo. This is D." Jinn spoke up. "Listen. About the plan we spoke about a month ago. I need to make some alterations to it. Trust me, they won't impact the bigger structure, but they will be small changes that can be noticed if we slip up." Jinn paused, waiting for a response. "Good. Here's the list of changes. Number one: Change the focus away from Timberland over the next week. Number two: Take down the person we agreed upon after a week's time from now. Number three: Send only one calling card to Timberland, but put heavy emphasis on sending calling cards to the other locations we have listed down. Trust me, I have my reasons. Number four, and the last change to make: Change the code to blue. That's all I wanted to put in. Continue the rest as we planned. Trust me, you will be in for some fun in a week's time."

Jinn hung up and made the phone evaporate in his hand, looking over towards Seishin as he chuckled. He began to walk away from Seishin altogether, Sigma would wake up and probably think he had the checkmate. Jinn had already observed what he needed to and it happened right in front of Sigma's own eyes. Jinn couldn't help but chuckle a bit louder, having to do everything in his power to hold himself back from outright laughing. Gaia, The Other Side, everything was about to hit a turning point in a week's time. The lower half of Jinn's mask evaporates away temporarily, just for a second, to reveal a smirk among pure darkness. "I've done it. I've put down the checkmate. Have fun with whatever you intend to do now, Sigma." When Jinn's mask reformed, he uses a wish to make himself go faster without disrupting reality with the sudden change in speed. In an instant, Jinn's body flies forward at jet high speeds, passing through everything like he was a ghost, not even a gust of wind was caused by the sudden increase in speed. There was no longer a need to remain so close while Sigma was in town, Jinn decided it was time to check the old hideout.

Sigma saw no sign of Jinn, that must mean he left Seishin last night. If Jinn's power was over wishing, he could only assume Jinn had the power to bend reality itself to his favor. Increasing one's speed without it being a destructive force would be the first thing he would think of doing if he wanted a quick getaway. Jinn was here, and then, he was gone, like the sound of a passing car. Jinn must of thought himself clever when he saw Sigma go to sleep and realized he could leave, never realizing Sigma had already kept track of Jinn even when he moved out of Seishin. Sigma would have to wait until later to check on where this Jinn had gone, but he felt satisfied in knowing the checkmate was his to make at any time he saw fit. Jinn was a tough opponent to get around, but he had somehow had managed to survive the onslaught. Sigma looked up to see the castle The Sukodo Emperor resided within. It was time to have a little chat.


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The Sukodo Empire


Sigma had finally arrived at the center of Seishin, the Sukodo Empire's castle itself. In comparison to the rest of Seishin, the castle's design looked grand and held some mystical wonder about it. The emblem for the Sukodo Empire had been decorated on several flags surrounding and on the castle itself. A gold background with a red circle, holding a golden lion's face in the center of the red circle. Most of the soldiers he could see held gold armor on them, but he could see the emblem of the Sukodo Empire clear as daylight held somewhere on each soldier.

When Sigma tried to enter in through the two giant doors, he was stopped by two of the soldiers guarding the entrance. "We beg pardon, Sigma of the Order of Gray." One of the soldiers spoke up. "But we did not receive any word from the Order itself about you arriving. We must apologize for this abrupt end to your visit in Seishin, but if you would kindly leave now." That's when the giant doors behind them opened, both of them looking back to see a man walking out towards Sigma. "G-General, sir! What brings you out here all of a sudden?!"


"I am here to greet Sigma properly, of course." The general looked over from one soldier to the next. "Let me guess. He gave you orders again, didn't he? What a pain." The man placed both hands upon his hips. "He keeps trying to force things to go his way, and here I am stuck dealing with the aftermath of it every time. Do not just stand there staring at me, allow this man to pass through! I received word that Sigma himself was going to arrive here!" The guards immediately stepped aside to allow Sigma to pass. The general smiled as he gestured for Sigma to follow him. "Come, please. I shall lead you inside."

As Sigma and the general headed inside, the two guards let out exhausted sighs of relief as the gates closed behind them. The general looked over at Sigma and smiled again. "Allow me to properly introduce myself. I am Ryan Wynngard, son of the Emperor himself and one of the General's to the Sukodo Empire." Ryan gave a quick bow from the waist to Sigma. "On behalf of my father, and by extension the Empire itself, we thank you for taking the time to come and visit Seishin as always. I have cleared up some time for you, so you do not need to worry about me suddenly running off somewhere. If you would follow me, please." Ryan started to walk forward ahead, but Sigma did not move.

"My apologies if I sound rather rude here." Sigma's words caused Ryan to stop and look over at Sigma. "I am thankful you allowed me to come within the castle itself, but I did not come here to meet with you. I came here to speak with the Emperor himself." Sigma stepped forward to walk over to Ryan. "If you would be so kind as to take me to him, I would be rather grateful. I have important business to talk about with your father, and it is not information I will just share with anyone. Not even if it's his own children." A brief moment of silence fell over as Ryan and Sigma stared at each other. Ryan broke the silence by chuckling lightly as he raises a hand over his mouth.

"I thought as much." Ryan moved his hands up to run through his hair for a moment. "I tried to get it through the easy way, but it seems you won't take no for an answer." Ryan moved his right hand to his neck as he started to rotate his head around. "Here's the thing. Father told me he didn't want visitors today. Especially if they were any unwanted guests from the Order." Ryan's gaze suddenly turned sharp as he shot Sigma another look. "Understand? You were only allowed inside Seishin because you managed to save people from some beast our soldiers could of easily taken care of. If you wish to talk to me and get a nice little tour of the place, we can do that. But my father is off limits."

"That's most unfortunate." Sigma tightened his hands into fists as he spoke out to Ryan. "I had a feeling I was going to be denied to see him again. He always does this when I come here, and I imagine you want to hear what I have to say. But as I said before, this information is important and should only be expressed to your father. This has nothing to do with you or your family, it has to do with me and him. Now I won't ask again. I will have an audience with your father now." Sigma went to move past Ryan, only to feel Ryan's hand grip his shoulder and pull him back, despite how big Sigma was.

"Oh, so that's how this is gonna go, is it? I've been itching for a fight for a long while now, you know." Ryan pulled his hand back to crack his knuckles. "I'm not like my sister, you know." Ryan began to emit a red glow around his figure as all the nearby soldiers immediately backed away as Ryan began to have a cocky smirk grow across his face. "It's rude to ignore me, you know. I may be the newest general and I am rather young for my position, but I am not one to be ignored. If you want to see father, you'll have to get past me. I'm not one to back down from a challenge, so please, don't give me any of that peace excuse. I know you want to punch me, so go ahead, let's do this!"

"I will not fight you, I have no desire to. So please, listen to --" But Sigma was cut off and forced to dodge an incoming punch, followed suit by him having to dodge a flurry of punches, all of them turned red by the red glow surrounding Ryan. "I see how it is." Sigma backed up from Ryan himself and entered into a stance, which sparked a fire in Ryan's eyes as he slammed his feet down and entered into an aggressive fighting stance. "You will regret this." Sigma gave out before throwing jabs at Ryan. Ryan couldn't help but smack each of them away, Sigma's eyes widening at Ryan's sudden increase in speed. "That's not good." Sigma managed to whisper out, throwing a strike for the side of his head, but Ryan had ducked down and leaped away as Sigma felt his body tense up.

"You want to speak to my father about the upcoming situations, don't you?" Ryan licked his lips briefly before rushing forward at Sigma, turning into a red blur as Sigma barely managed to block Ryan's incoming kick. Sigma felt himself sliding back as Ryan landed back on his feet and held up a hand, gesturing for Sigma to come for him. "Let me guess. You want to put the blame on my dad again, don't you? When will you learn to just let things go, you old fool?" As Sigma came launching in for him, Ryan sent up a kick up for Sigma's chin. Sigma managed to lean back out of the way from it, only for Ryan to slam his leg down and graze Sigma's mask with it. Sigma watched with an intense look in his eyes now as Ryan's foot slams into the ground, Ryan giving a cocky expression before standing up straight and pointing both index fingers at Sigma.

"Well, I can see you have been playing catch up, haven't you?" Sigma moved to strike Ryan's face, but quickly pulled back as Ryan was already in the middle of preparing to block it. Ryan's expression grew blank for a moment as Sigma struck his chest with a palm strike and sends him tumbling back before managing to catch himself onto his feet. "I will be frank with you about one thing. While others in the Order may not see it, I see your father being connected to this. He was given a warning ten years ago, and I wouldn't put it past him to plan something of this scale. He has had his eyes set on Gaia for a long time now, you and I both know this." Ryan pushed himself up to his feet as Sigma continued to speak. "Let me pass and I shall confirm it for myself if he is involved or not!"

"Well, it's now or never I suppose." Ryan took in a deep breath as the red glow intensified! Letting it out slowly, Ryan stepped forward and appeared in front of Sigma, quickly grabbing the wrist he was going to strike with and striking his elbow into Sigma's throat. Smirking, he quickly pulls Sigma down to slam an elbow into his head before kicking him away as he lets go of his arm. Sigma had been caught off guard by Ryan's increase in power and speed, falling to a knee as he looked up at Ryan. "Time to make my decision. This could be my big moment." Ryan slide into another aggressive stance, smirking over at Sigma's direction. "Is this a mirage, or a chance to fulfill my mission?" Sigma heaved out a sigh as he forces himself to stand upright again.

"Referencing a song, are we?" Sigma cracks his own knuckles as Ryan watches him carefully. Sigma tightens his fists as he concentrates, letting a white glow slowly form around him. The white glow would give off a calm and soothing feeling to Ryan, making him tense up in response as Sigma doesn't take a stance this time, but simply readies himself. "You surprised me, Ryan Wynngard. However, I believe it's time to show you what happens when I stop playing around." Ryan narrows his eyes at these words, his eyes blinking and in that instant, Sigma had vanished from sight. Ryan's eyes widen as he feels something behind him, quickly leaping forward as he turns around. But Ryan finds nothing there, gasping slightly as Sigma comes slamming his fist down into Ryan's chest from above, crashing Ryan's body into the ground.

Sigma faded to Ryan's eyes, as Ryan forces himself up to his knees as he gasps for breath. Ryan knew he didn't have much time to sit around and wait for Sigma to appear again, clapping his hands together as he raises himself up to his feet and strikes out in front of himself upon seeing a blur. But Ryan had not hit Sigma, Ryan's feeling a shiver run down his spine as he strikes the ground below him, only to find nothing again. That's when he felt a kick hit the back of his head, causing him to stumble forward and slide across the ground. When Ryan rose up to his feet again, he could not even find where Sigma had originally attacked him from. Ryan couldn't help but let out a chuckle as he rubbed his arm against his mouth and looked around.

"Very interesting, Sigma. You've been holding back on me." Ryan claps his hands together again as he spreads his arms out to his sides, hunching forward as he waited this time. Licking his lips, his eyes darted to the right as he grabs a hold of Sigma's foot and brings his left elbow into Sigma's leg, forcing his body to slam into the ground. "Hah! I gotcha!" Ryan brings his right fist away and moved in to strike Sigma's face, only to hit the ground as Sigma's body was gone. "So that's how it is. I've been tricked!" Ryan let out an intense yell as he spread his arms out again, opening his hands up fully as a shock wave is sent out from Ryan. Sigma was unable to attack Ryan and found himself planting his feet on the ground firmly to hold himself in place. Sigma couldn't react when it was over, for Ryan had already moved in front of him and was unleashing a furious flurry of punches upon him. Sigma was only able to move his arms up to block after feeling several strikes already hit him, Ryan being relentless as while he was attacking, he was forcing Sigma to move back.

Ryan felt confident in his attack now, but he knew Sigma was just waiting for the perfect chance to strike back now. Lowering himself down after stopping his assault on Sigma, he saw Sigma's arm fly through the air. That's when Ryan saw his chance, quickly sweep kicking Sigma's feet from out underneath him before pulling back his right arm and with a few steps forward, slammed the whole right side of his body into Sigma, sending him flying through the air while flipping a few times before slamming full force into one of the two giant doors he had just entered through. Ryan couldn't help but laugh as he saw Sigma slide down and points at him right his right index finger. "Gotcha again! You thought I wouldn't realize the trick you pulled, did ya? What's it called, huh? Harmonic Dance, if I recall." Ryan entered into his third aggressive stance. "Come on! You can't beat me as you are now!"

"You are correct on that." Sigma spoke up, Ryan tensing his body up again as he watched Sigma rise up to his feet slowly now. "I can't beat you as I am now. That much is certain." Sigma quickly brushed himself off as he brought his arms up and placed his hands together, lowering his head slightly as if he was praying. "I shall change that now. This fight is over." For a moment, Ryan hesitated. He thought Sigma was bluffing here, trying to make Ryan give an opening for him to strike in. But Sigma did not move, and in response, Ryan held his stance. Ryan began to feel his body shaking from how little it was moving now, while Sigma remained perfectly still. The longer Ryan and Sigma stood in place, the more Ryan felt the impulse to attack grow stronger within his chest. It was weighing him down the more time passed, his breathing becoming faster as he could feel his heart beat growing stronger. The sound began to pump into his head, it was bothering him more than it should. Finally, Ryan snaps into action.

"WRONG!" Ryan shouts at practically the top of his lungs, lunging in as he pulls both arms back. "This fight is MINE!" As Ryan went to strike forward with both arms, he felt his body stop completely in midair. Ryan couldn't move an inch, it was like he had been frozen in time or something! But Sigma could move perfectly fine, as he brought his right arm out while keeping his body in the same stance. Ryan felt fear grip his chest as he saw Sigma's arm slowly rise up and his hand aiming in the direction of Ryan's chest. Ryan tried to move, but his body just wouldn't allow him. He couldn't even speak, yet Sigma's hand crept in closer towards him. Ryan just wanted to scream out, but he had no way of doing so. That's when Sigma's hand lightly struck Ryan's chest, and Ryan felt his entire body suddenly become shaken to the core. That's when reality came rushing back in, and Ryan's body is sent flying back at high speeds.

Ryan slams his feet into the ground, gritting his teeth as he was forced to slow down his body towards a grinding halt. He felt his feet being burned as they slide across the ground, his eye twitching as a small bit of blood escaped the left corner of his mouth. Finally, when he was able to stop himself, smoke rose up from his body as Ryan's hair began a mess from what it had been in before. Ryan could see some of his hair falling in front of his face as Sigma began to head for his father's room. "Stop right there!" When Ryan took a step forward, his entire body became weak and he collapses to his hands and knees. Ryan was out of breath suddenly, his entire body shaking and fatigued as Ryan felt like he had just been hit by a train! "Darn it! I said stop!" Ryan tried to reach out for Sigma, but found himself having to lower his arm to the ground from how little energy there seemed to be now in his body.

"Do you want to know what I just did to you?" Sigma stopped, his back to Ryan as Ryan continued to struggle to get back up and resume the fight. "That was one of my Zenith Strikes. If you can't even handle the weakest part of my true power, this fight ends here and now. Do not worry, you are not injured physically. But I have stripped you of everything that you used to drive yourself forward into the fight. You said you figured out my strategy before? That was wrong. Every time you tensed up your body, I was waiting and watching you. Let the obvious sink in from that." Sigma walked out of sight, Ryan trying one more time to reach out for him before collapsing to the floor entirely. Ryan was just barely keeping himself conscious from passing out, wanting to scream out but having no energy to do so right now. Sigma was now on his way to see the Emperor himself, and he would not take anymore interruptions!


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The Sukodo Emperor


Having made his way past Ryan, all of the other guards stationed about looked upon Sigma with fear and panic. He had easily taken down Ryan, one of the Sukodo Empire's Generals, and now was on his way to see The Emperor himself. None had the manpower to stop him from heading towards The Emperor's throne room, even if they did gang up on him in numbers, they knew he would simply push them aside with but a flick of his wrist. Stopping before the doors, Sigma pushed his hands upon them and began to push open the doors that would normally be too heavy for even five humans to open! As a golden light began to shine out from the room, a clapping of hands began as Sigma finished opening up the doors and looked upon The Emperor's form before him.

As The Emperor stopped his clapping, he appeared to be wearing his traditional golden armor that fit with the golden room surrounding him. Figures of lion's heads could be seen having been built over the walls of the room leading towards The Emperor's throne. Though it was not a traditional throne since The Emperor usually sat upon the ground of his rather large Litter. The only time people would be seen carrying it around would be when The Emperor needed to go somewhere and needed the utmost protection. Sigma walked forward to stand before The Emperor's Litter and knelt down before it. The Emperor gave off a light laugh in response.

"Well, Ryan appears to have been defeated. It was kind of expected, but what else could be done? He tried his best, and in the end, your will to see me proved stronger than him. I see you are determined to speak to me no matter what, I concede to your request, Sigma of the Order of Gray." The Emperor gave off another laugh from behind his helmet as he shook his head. "Rise, Sigma of the Order of Gray. Tell me what you seek from our peculiar meeting today." Sigma rose back up to his feet, looking up to The Emperor's cheerful form. It was unusual for him to see The Emperor so delighted to see him, it might be a charade considering the circumstances he could note while passing through the Sukodo Empire's castle.

"My apologies, but I wish to discuss something else first before I bring up my questions." Sigma looked around at the frightened guards throughout the room. "I know I may have barged in, but that is only because you have refused to see me so many times that I cannot accept it anymore. Regardless of that, you have more powerful warriors than Ryan. You appear to be lacking a lot of your best here actually, Emperor Sukodo. You do not have your daughter Morrigan around, your Head Guard and his two trained Guards. Those are but a few of many examples, why send away all of your best to leave yourself open like this?"

"So you noticed, I thought you would." The Emperor put his hands on his knees as he lowered his head and Sigma could hear a sigh emit from within the helmet. "It is time for The Empire to act and not hide behind the actions of others. With grim times approaching all of us, I wish to let it be known that we will be there to help out with whatever comes about. Be it the Dark Wizards, or the Demon Legion itself. I will not allow merely myself protection and allow others to fall. If I should be attacked and slain, so be it!" The Emperor waved his right hand across the air at this statement. "But the people will have faith in The Empire again, and we will all be able to stand together and unite in the end to overcome the rising forces of evil!"

"I see. I must apologize again, Emperor Sukodo. I did not mean to make it emotional for you, only curious why you did this. Now that I see why, I will not pry into it any further." As Sigma gathered his thoughts on what to speak to The Emperor about first, he heard the doors begin to open behind them. Turning his head slightly to look, he could see a menacing red aura glowing and slipping through the doors as they were forced open by one man. As the person shoves the doors aside and walks in towards Sigma, everyone could see that it was Ryan who had forced himself back into the room. The Emperor and Sigma both remained silent as Ryan stopped just a few feet away from Sigma, while all the guards looked on in shock at Ryan somehow managing to push himself back up despite being knocked down by Sigma beforehand.

"Father, do not give this man another moment of your time!" Ryan practically shouted out between heavy breaths, everyone watching him intensely as they did not know whether he would attack or continue to remain standing where he was. "I, Ryan Wynngard, shall continue to fight him until he leaves! Allow me to redeem my honor, father! You set expectations upon me, and I did not match up to them! I will not let that be the end of it, I will not let you down again! I will never let this man knock me down ever again!" Ryan raised up his right fist towards his father. "For The Empire itself, I am ready to stand up time and again until your voice is heard! Until your requests are met by others! Please, father, do not give in to him just because he is a member of The Order of Gray!" Silence swept throughout the room after Ryan had given his say on the matter, The Emperor standing up and walking over to stand in front of Ryan as he places a gentle hand upon his shoulder.

"Look at yourself, exhausted and beaten. Yet you still manage to push yourself back up to your own two feet. That is more than I could ever ask of my newest General and my son." Ryan's eyes widened at his father's words. "It is my fault in the end, General Ryan. I gave the request to not allow Sigma to see me, and I told you to stop him despite your new position due to everyone else being busy right now. I put off Sigma for the longest time, and you, my son, were thrown into the middle of it all without me considering what may or may not happen in the process. Had it been anyone else, you may be dead right now. I could not bare to live with myself had you been killed in my place trying to protect me. You are strong, Ryan, never forget that! You have not dishonored me or The Empire upon this day. You have managed to prove yourself in combat today, you have show me your resolve to protect our home no matter who or what may stand up against it. Well done, General Ryan! Well done!" His father's words caused Ryan to collapse to his knees, putting his right hand over his face to hide his coming tears from everyone else. The Emperor pats his shoulder twice before walking back over to his Litter and sitting down with his legs crossing again.

"My apologies, Sigma of the Order of Gray." The Emperor spoke out to Sigma again. "But now you may resume where you left off. I will allow no more interruptions on your behalf. Forgive my son, and forgive me for both of our foolish actions today." The Emperor bowed his head to Sigma before lifting it up and waiting for him to speak. Sigma was more shocked that Ryan had managed to stand back up after his Zenith Strike. Even when holding it back, Zenith Strike would still drain the target of all energy and strength to carry on fighting. He had seen this happen with Ryan when he collapsed after taking his Zenith Strike head on. He thought he would be unconscious for at least three whole days, a normal person would of been unconscious for around a week's time! Yet Ryan had returned, moments after being struck by his Zenith Strike, and was more than willing to put his life on the line to stop Sigma. Ryan was stronger than he had been lead to believe, he would need to keep an eye on all of The Sukodo Empire's soldiers from now on.

"As you wish, Emperor Sukodo." Sigma spoke up after taking a little bit to think to himself. "If I were to begin, I would say it is time we spoke of your involvement with Timberland. I believe it's time you answered us, and by extension me, for a change. Everyone knows of the fall of the Blue Haired Dragonborn family, yet most do not know it was by your hand that they fell. They have since been labeled as devil's to your Empire, enemies if you would. Heretics who are to be cast down if any of the family had survived. I wish to start off by changing this to allow any survivors to come out of the shadows and live their lives normally." Sigma's hands slowly tightened as he spoke up. "Emperor Sukodo! I request that the Blue Hairs be cleared of the accusations and charges that have been put against them!"


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The Great Journey


"Free the blue hairs?" The Emperor repeated Sigma's words, as if he had just been struck over the head with the request. The Emperor's helmet lowered as Sigma and the others could all start to hear a laugh rising up from within the armor. Even Ryan, as he looked up to see what was going on with his father, felt fear enter into his heart as his father rarely ever laughed like this. "My, such bold words, Sigma!" The Emperor rose his head up as he rubbed the side of his helmet lightly. "What makes you so certain I will agree to this? Are you prepared to clash with me over a matter I have built up over the years as the truth?"

"Indeed, I am." Sigma replied without any hint of worry ringing through his words. Ryan could only watch the both of them discuss this as he was the only one in the room who was able to watch them fully without breaking down into fear. All of the soldiers had been horrified and become like statues, Ryan knew what he was witnessing here today. Ryan quickly rose up to his feet as Sigma went on to continue, interrupting him as Sigma and The Emperor turned to Ryan. "Oh? Do you have something to say in response to this, General Ryan?" Sigma asked Ryan. Ryan tightened his hands into fists as he looked boldly at the both of them. Now all the soldiers had backed away from all three of them, feeling something big was about to unfold before them.

"I know what you are about to suggest, Sigma!" Ryan threw his words out loud and clear. "You have found a Belmont. Not just any Belmont either, one who has the dominant genes to allow for his hair to become blue. We have long suspected that any surviving Belmont may have received recessive genes and not gained blue hair. However, they seem to have not awakened to any true potential a dominant gene Belmont would." Ryan took a few seconds to gather his thoughts before continuing. "You are about to suggest that this Belmont has blue hair. If that is true, he is the last of his family with said blue hair. The records I have read show that only one Belmont survived. Any children he had before his death may have inherited the blue hair." Ryan was about to continue, but heard his father clapping again. Ryan froze up with a sudden fear as he could only look over at his father along with Sigma.

"Well done, General Ryan. You did some research, I see." The Emperor's words sent out a chill throughout everyone in the throne room. "It is true what you say. Should the only known Belmont to have survived the incident were to have children, it was always a possibility they would receive the dominant genes. But we did not detect him having any children, only word of his death rung out. I had thought the Belmont family to have died with him. But it seems Sigma is about to suggest otherwise." The Emperor couldn't help but chuckle. "I truly do apologize for interrupting the both of you. However, let us hear what Sigma has to say first before throwing anymore accusations out at him. Sigma, you have the floor open to you. Please, share with us what you have in mind exactly with this."

"Thank you, Emperor Sukodo." Sigma bowed his head briefly. "Ryan is correct. I have indeed found a Belmont who has blue hair. He is the last survivor of the family with said hair. I shall not confirm or deny if he has any siblings, that is not my intention here today. My intention here today is to free the Belmont family from these chains that have weighed upon them for a great many years now. I do not go before the Dragonborn Council with this because this at the heart of all of this, it is up to the Sukodo Empire whether the Belmont's are devils or innocents. You both may have asked yourselves why I would suggest this, and I believe both of you already know. But for the sake of the soldiers here, I will state it anyway." Sigma cleared his throat before going any further. "I wish to propose a Great Journey for him."

"I KNEW IT!" Ryan shouted out after hearing Sigma speak the words. "You mean to clear his name by having him find the great treasure that was lost to us!" Ryan calmed himself down quickly before speaking again. "Many have taken The Great Journey in search of the great treasure that we now know today as Yggdrasil. During the time of The Gods, many a great legend undertook The Great Journey in order to find it. Even after the time of The Gods had ended, many great people still took it in the hopes that they would be the one to find it. Many have since given up hope that Yggdrasil is a myth or unobtainable." Ryan looked over to his father and bowed his head down. "My apologies. I did not mean to interrupt, only to clarify my suspicions."

"That is fine, my son." The Emperor spoke up before turning to look back to Sigma. "I am sure you have heard of the famous tree from Norse mythology: Yggdrasil. The legend we know for our Yggdrasil goes that when the unspeakable Ancients were done with whatever mission they had been set on, they entrusted a seed to the Gods. The Gods named the seed Yggdrasil. This seed is said to hold the power of Change. Should a mortal plant the seed and make it grow, it is said they will have control over the domain the Gods rule over. In other words, they would become the most powerful force anyone has ever seen. The Gods hid away the Seed somewhere long ago and allowed any mortal, be they good or bad, find it to see if they would prove themselves worthy. But to this day, none has ever seen or heard of the seed that will bloom Yggdrasil." The Emperor turns to Ryan. "My son, would you be kind enough to explain to Sigma what The Great Journey means now?"

"Yes, of course father." Ryan looked over to Sigma. "The Great Journey is something that was started originally as a way to find the seed. It is said whoever found the seed would be the one to plant it and enter into the domain of the Gods. It is said that the seed and, by extension Yggdrasil, holds the power to rewrite reality itself. When the Gods departed, people continued to search for the seed regardless of how hopeless it seemed. The man who defeated The Wizard, The Blue Haired Warrior, went on The Great Journey and couldn't find it. Not even the greatest users of magic we have ever known could find it. You may have heard of the two chosen heroes of The White and The Black. Kuro, The Black's Chosen and Shiro, The White's Chosen. After they had defeated and slain Dracul, they too went on The Great Journey. Although Shiro died before they could finish it, leaving Kuro to abandon it. By offering The Great Journey to us here, you propose to have this Belmont find the Seed of Yggdrasil in order to clear any and all accusations that have been thrown at him and his family."

"That's right." Sigma stated to them both. "I could care less what happens to the Seed of Yggdrasil. I am only here to clear the name of the Belmont family. I assume neither of you have a problem with this?" Sigma waited a minute before continuing. "Right. Here are my terms then. He shall be given a year's time to train and grow. In other words, by September of next year, he will have to start The Great Journey. He shall be allowed to gather his own crew of whoever he wishes. I shall allow a second crew to be formed in order to rival against his own, so that it does not seem unfair. Should the second group find the seed before his does, you may imprison him if you wish. If someone outside the two groups manages to find the seed, you may do with me as you wish. It can even be execution for all I care. I know I am stepping on what is essentially holy ground for all of us here, but I am willing to bet my life in order to free them!"

"Give me a moment to think." The Emperor responded. For a while, all became silent in the room. The soldiers could not believe they were basically witnessing what would be the start of possibly a great legend. It had been roughly a hundred years since anyone had taken The Great Journey. Shiro and Kuro were said to have been two of the greatest magic users of any age. However, not even they together, with all the best forces they could summon, could find the Seed of Yggdrasil. Ryan and Sigma both stood watching the Emperor as he gave it some thought. Finally, he rose up his head and looked from within his helmet to both Ryan and Sigma. "I have decided. I will accept this offer and let the Dragonborn Council know that in a year's time, the next Great Journey shall begin! Sigma, you may leave now. I know you may have other things to tell me, but it will have to wait. I am busy as of late, and I promise you, I shall hear them out as soon as I get the time." Sigma bows his head to The Emperor before heading out of the room. Ryan looks over to his father in shock.

"You... Accepted? I am surprised." Ryan could not hold back his emotions from spilling out through his voice. "I am sorry, but I need to follow him!" Ryan dashed out of the room without a second thought, the guards and soldiers not even being able to catch a glimpse of him before leaving. Sigma stops in place as if knowing Ryan was coming, seeing him run up beside him and gasp for breath. "Sigma! Please, do not go just yet! I need to talk to you!" Ryan took a moment to control his breathing. "Do not go through with this! Everyone involved will be put at great risk, do you truly believe this is the correct choice for all of us? Think about it. Should it end badly, my father will have you imprisoned or worse, executed! The people you intend to save will forever be known as devils! To fail The Great Journey is to commit the greatest sin known to the magical world! I insist you do not go through with this, please!"

"I appreciate the concern Ryan, but I have chosen my path. We all must face judgement someday, and I will always protect others before myself. It does not matter how many obstacles everyone puts before me, I will save the people that matter most to me. I must inform Lady Alpha of my rash decision, I am sure she will be overjoyed to hear that my life is pretty much at risk in a year. Do not worry about me or anyone else, worry about the Empire and your family. I will not inform the boy or his friends of my choice here today, they shall be informed when the time comes to start the journey. I do wonder how your sister will react to the news though." Sigma gave out a light chuckle before leaving the castle of the Sukodo Empire. Ryan could only stare on at his figure as it left Seishin. Ryan clutched his chest lightly, knowing that something great was just over the horizon.