Prologue: Tale of a Magus Maximus
“The wheel of fate has been set in motion.”
The summer sun warmed the man’s cold bones. His tired eyes peered at the sky as it became lit with hues of crimson, orange, gold, and even violet..
“Enjoying the sunset?” a woman asked, stepping into the highest balcony in the imperial castle. She looked no older than twenty-one, but in reality she was thousands of years old.
The old man—despite looking as ageless as the new arrival—smiled at the violet-haired woman. “Yeah. Isn’t it beautiful?”
She sat down in the lounge chair next to him, allowing her to overlook the festival and the various glistening rivers below. Though the couple paid neither the young ones nor the streams of rushing water any mind.
He interwove his fingers with hers and smiled. “I’m glad that I’m spending these last moments with you.”
“As am I,” she said, tightening her grip on his hand. “Now that you aren’t the Magus Maximus, you’re free.”
The man nodded. “It was a burden. Though—and this might be narcissistic of me—I don’t think that anyone else could’ve taken my place. That is, until now.”
The purple-haired woman nodded back, a smile in her face. “We leave our son-in-law and daughter to carry this realm into the future.”
He gazed at the sky anew. “Yeah. Hopefully they’d learn to get along.” His exhausted ruby eyes closed over time. “I do worry if I did enough to keep this realm safe. There was so much more that I could do, but didn’t.”
His wife caressed his frail hand. “You did all that you could. You maintained peace and stability to this realm. That alone is an admirable thing. It is now up to the next generations of Magus Maximus’ to make this world better.”
A grin crossed his youthful face. “I hope so. I wonder what will become of us.”
“What do you mean?”
The former Magus Maximus snickered. “You should know, you were once the high priestess of Xian.”
She bit her lip. “You mean the afterlife? I would like to ascend to the eternal realm with you... but you’re not going there, are you?”
The man nodded. “I can’t go, not yet. Perhaps at the end of my next lifetime. I’d like to see what lies beyond this life. To experience a chance at having a normal life.”
The lady snickered, cuddling up to him. “You’re anything but normal.” Her deep turquoise eyes peered into his. “If that’s your decision then I’ll respect it.” The light in her eyes slowly faded. “I pray to the goddess that we meet once more, my love.”
Using all of his remaining strength to embrace her, he pressed her head against his chest. “As do I, even if our relationship is different. I’d like to meet you again.”
“I am certain we will.”
“May the goddess grant it,” the two said in unison. With those words, the pair faded into the winds of time, ready to watch over a new era.