Lunar: Eternal Blue, Lucia of the Blue Star - Vol. 3 - Leo's Monologue
I am Leo. Throughout the world I am known as the White Knight. But, I have abandoned that title. And so have I dismissed the men who once served under me, who have fought alongside me through many battles on the Dragonship Destiny.
Now, alone, I make my way towards Serak Palace. Serak is where my sister Mauri--no, Red Priest Mauri--resides. I go to see Mauri. And once I see her... I must kill her.
Even if others may accuse me of murdering my own sister, even if I am punished for what I do, I am willing to bear the burden of such a crime... I must. That is because I, Mauri's brother, am the sole one responsible for creating the conditions which made her into what she is today.
I must reap the seed that I have sown.
* * *
Everything began in my home village of Raculi.
One year, we were cursed by a plague which swept through the village. Priests came from the larger towns to offer assitence; among them were Mauri and Ronfar--Mauri's lover and my closest friend. The two of them were still in training, but came once they heard of the danger in their home village.
The priests continued to offer their prayers, but not one of those who were plagued by the sickness showed signs of recovery. And then, even the priests themselves began to fall victim to the curse... including Mauri.
Ronfar prayed for her, never once leaving her side; but he did not receive even the slightest blessing. Soon, those who were first afflicted by the curse began to lose their lives.
I ran to the fields and cursed the heavens!
Why! Why has Althena left her priests' prayers unanswered!?
A single man then appeared, and said to me: "If you want a miracle, then you must leave here and go to see the Goddess herself. If you merely stay here and pray, then Althena will not grant you anything. Althena herself is disheartened that no one has come to see her directly."
I had but one question to ask the man in response: if what he said is true, then where must I go?
The man gave me the name of a small island, in the lake near Raculi. It is referred to as a lake, but it would be more accurate to call it an inland sea, as it would take an entire day by ship to reach the island the man mentioned.
Although I was reluctant, I told Ronfar of my intention to go, and asked him to join me. "It would be much better if I went with a priest," I said.
"No. Althena will grant anyone a miracle, priest or not."
Intent on doing this, even if I had to go by myself, I went alone to the lakeside, rented a small boat, and headed for the island.
* * *
At the island was a young, beautiful woman, calling herself the Goddess. She greeted me upon my arrival, as I was tired and exhausted. Amongst the surroundings of stones and boulders, she shone brilliantly.
"We understand what you ask of Us. But what is it that you are willing to offer in return?"
I was flustered. I hadn't considered the need for any sort of exchange.
"If you will save Mauri, then I will pledge eternal loyalty to you, as your servant!"
Thereupon the Goddess smiled, and gave me a small vial.
"Hasten your return, and have her drink this."
I quickly said my thanks, and returned by boat once again to the village. The village had begun its first funeral rites. Holes were dug in the ground in a number of places, and several coffins lay waiting nearby. I feared that Mauri already lay inside one, and hurried back home.
Inside, Mauri was still lying in bed. She was still crying out in pain, her voice growing weaker. But upon hearing her voice, I knew she was still alive, and I was relieved. Ronfar was praying beside her. He looked pallid, as if he had not taken a single moment's rest from prayer.
Ronfar stopped his prayers, and said to me quietly, "You are just in time. Mauri is the last one." I understood what he meant from the look of death in Mauri's eyes.
"Just in time..."
I woke Mauri to make sure she could still be saved, supporting the upper half of her body. Mauri writhed in pain, and let out a cry.
"Stop! The more I move, the faster the illness will spread!"
"I brought medicine with me. It is in that bag. Bring it here."
Ronfar removed the cap from the vial and brought it to Mauri's lips.
"Drink this, Mauri," I said. "This should help."
Mauri looked up at me with tears in her eyes. And then, she drank.
Instantly, Mauri started shaking violently, and let out a fierce cry. Her hands grasped at the air two or three times. She grabbed the vial from Ronfar's hands and hurled it across the room. She then clutched my arm and dug her fingers into my skin. From the vial poured forth a sickly-looking liquid, far more than the small container should have held. Mauri and the bed she lay on were covered in crimson. She dug her fingernails into my arm with such strength, uncharacteristic of someone who was ill, and so hard that the marks still remain there today.
"Leo! What was that!?"
"It is the medicine Althena gave me!"
As I answered, something happened which shocked even me. Mauri embraced me, as if she were no longer in pain nor wounded. It was as if her condition reversed itself in an instant. Strength flowed from her body. Yet, I was still worried that she could die, and so I laid her back down on the bed. And I prayed. Even if Mauri loses a part of herself, if she loses her voice or vigor, then please save at least her life. And, I will give to you anything in return.
Mauri slept. Her chest rose and fell rigidly in time with her breath. It seemed that she was no longer in pain.
Ronfar asked me, "Did it help?"
"I think so."
And thus, Mauri was the only one to survive the curse that plagued the village.
When I told Mauri and Ronfar of my promise to the Goddess, and my intention to return to her, the two of them asked to go with me. I could think of no reason to refuse. On the contrary, Mauri gathered the villagers and told them this:
"The priests in town were not able to drive out the curse. That is because they did not go to see Althena herself. We should have gone to her much sooner. If we had, then perhaps so many people would not have been lost to the illness.
"I will go to the Goddess Althena on behalf of everyone here, and pledge my life to her; I will ask her for your protection. And so, please entrust me with gaining the favor of Althena."
Mauri spoke quietly, but her words were intense. Her skin was terribly pale, and her lips as red as blood. Even as her brother, her beauty sent shivers down my spine, and I was moved by her willingness to pledge her life to the Goddess for the villagers.
Mauri amassed a wealth one would not expect of a small village. We were joined by others in the village who also swore service to Althena, and departed in the largest ship of the village for Althena's island... for Pentagulia.
Before leaving, I sought out the man who first told me about Althena, but I could not find him.
* * *
Thereafter, we swore loyalty to Althena's Guard and began to work for them. I went from place to place destroying monsters, and meanwhile spread the message of Althena. Mauri and Ronfar prepared for Althena's Guard in Pentagulia itself. The two of them went through the specialized training for the priesthood in the Guard, and became prominent and skilled priests.
That is how I and the two of them spent more and more time apart. I pledged my body and soul to the work I did as a messenger of Althena. Wherever I went to defeat another monster, I would speak of what happened in Raculi. My efforts and work were welcomed everywhere, and I gathered more people who wished to pledge their support to the Guard, and to Althena.
Mauri and I had taken on great burdens through our work within Althena's Guard. And as we grew more and more busy, our chances to see one another decreased. But I was not unsatisfied. Whenever I returned to Pentagulia from my journeys abroad, its development continued to astound me. I heard that its progress was due to Mauri's abilities, and was very pleased. I was also given new equipment and resources each time I returned.
Soon, the Holy City of Pentagulia was complete, and at the brilliant opening ceremony, I was granted the title of "White Knight" and given Pentagulia's White Tower. And, I received the power of the White Dragon along with the Dragonship Destiny. Meanwhile, Mauri was granted the title of "Red Priest" and Pentagulia's Red Tower. She received the power of the Red Dragon, along with the great shrine of Serak Palace.
I was happy with how the circumstances turned out, as Serak Palace was not too far from our home village of Raculi.
* * *
Thereafter, Althena's Guard continued to expand considerably. At the same time, I came to hear of terrible rumors, rumors that people who refused to support the Guard were visited upon by awful divine retribution. Moreover, it was Mauri who was said to be the one responsible for such acts.
Of course, the Guard completely denied such rumors. They claimed, instead, that a Destroyer had come to this world. That is why Althena had been reborn, to protect us from the Destroyer. And we of Althena's Guard were told that the awful things spoken of in these rumors were part of a plot by the Destroyer, for the destruction of Lunar.
As for me, I believed the word of the Guard, and of Mauri.
Furthermore, as the number of faithful increased, in order to ensure Althena's safety from the Destroyer, only a select few were allowed to set foot in Pentagulia. When Ronfar, one of these select few, disappeared from the city, I prayed that it had nothing to do with the rumors surrounding Mauri. And then, while under orders to stop the Destroyer Lucia, I saw Ronfar again--as he fled from me, with Lucia. In the course of my journey, when I finally apprehended Ronfar and Lucia, I saw Mauri unleash her divine punishment for myself, and heard the rumors confirmed by Mauri's own words...
I was confused. Lost. Not knowing what else to do, I decided to allow Lucia to live and to take her to see Althena directly.
And that is when I found out the truth.
Everything was a lie.
Althena was an imposter.
And Mauri... Her soul, her heart, was being controlled by that imposter.
I knew, now, who was truly responsible for the curse in Raculi. It was all a trick to ensnare more people into Althena's Guard.
I had brought this curse upon myself. I was the one who brought that medicine to Mauri. At that time, the only thing we had to lose was Mauri's life. But now, because of me, so many more people have been brought into Althena's Guard, and so much more has been lost.
* * *
If the real Althena is released, then the curse on Mauri shold be lifted. But, to save Althena, the power of the Four Dragons, who have also been sealed, must be released first. And, the Red Dragon's seal is under the control of Mauri herself.
...Such is the seed that I have sown. Poor, poor Mauri... She cannot remain under the control of someone else any longer.
I know now what must be done...
...By my own hands, Mauri must...