Araneia walked into the war room of the Imperistia Imperial Stronghold. Arwyn and Hiran were stood by the map of the continent.
“About time you showed, freak” Hiran grunted, as he gave Araneia an angry look.
“Brother! Enough!” Arwyn banged his fist against the table, then turned to Araneia. “Thank you for joining us, we are grateful for the assistance that Aranei has deemed to grant us” Arwyn smiled.
“Why did you call me in?” Araneia asked.
“Our spies from the Undercity reported back” Hiran said, as he walked over to the table.
“Hmm, they didn’t die when the Overcity fell on them?” Araneia asked.
“No, the rebels managed to evacuate the whole Undercity without us noticing...” Arwyn sighed. “However, our spies have since learned that the rebels have been infiltrated by another group, who poisoned their cause” He added.
“What cause? They lived in one of the best cities in Crystalla, they should have been thankful” Hiran bellowed.
“I am not blind to the problems our nation has, unlike my brother, their cause was originally a noble one, the Undercity suffered while the Overcity prospered. I respected their right to rebel” Arwyn shrugged.
“You’re a real bleeding heart, brother” Hiran mocked Arwyn.
“Back to what you were saying, the rebels were infiltrated by whom, Lumina?” Araneia asked.
“Whomina?” Hiran shrugged.
“No” Arwyn shook his head. “It seems they’ve been infiltrated by a group who despises any kind of Crystalliam based power wielders, they call themselves Hominibus Prima. They hate Academy students, they hate you, they hate the Crystals and the Crystalliam Knights too." Arwyn explained.
"Hmm, they do know that without the crystals the world would fall out of balance once more?" Araneia asked. Arwyn shrugged.
"Honestly, they puzzle me, and what puzzles me most is their leader..." Arwyn began. "Their leader himself is a powerful mystic, who goes by the name Treleva" He revealed, Araneia stood up straight and backed away.
"Hah, a mystic leading a group of mystic haters, sounds about right" Hiran chuckled.
"Hmm... it can't be..." Araneia pondered to herself.
"Something wrong?" Arwyn asked.
"I recognize the name" Araneia nodded. "It can't be him though, he died long ago, it's likely just a coincidence" Araneia shrugged.
"Right" Arwyn nodded, he pointed to a mountain range not too far from Imperistia. "They have made their encampment here, built a real little city in the mountains" He added.
"Why don't you send in a team of Crystalliam Knights? Surely they'd make short work of them" Araneia asked. Hiran scoffed, and looked at Araneia.
"I told ya, love, he's a bleeding heart" Hiran laughed.
"What does that even mean?!" Araneia growled, becoming annoyed with Hiran's attitude, her black iris began glowing deep red, Hiran fell backward over himself onto the floor.
"What my idiot brother means to say, is, the little city they have built isn't full of soldiers and rebels, its full of people, regular normal people going about their lives. I refuse to put them in danger, others in the Imperium disagree" Arwyn explained. Hiran crawled back to his feet.
"They are a threat that must be dealt with, and if it spills a little Human and Hubun blood, so be it" Hiran shrugged.
"I was human" Araneia scowled.
"Ignore my brother, as it stands, I now command the majority of the Imperium forces, so, there will be no attack on the mountain city without my say so" Arwyn nodded. Hiran sighed deeply.
"They killed hundreds of Elvman without a second thought, brother, why must we show them mercy?" Hiran asked.
"Hiran, why do you think the Undercity Dwellers had to resort to such measures? We Elvmen have NEVER spared a thought to the other races, we dump our trash down there, our guards did unspeakable things and faced no reprimands. They had very real reasons for wanting to drop the city. In their eyes, it was justified" Arwyn explained.
Hiran grunted and walked out of the room, slamming the door behind him. Araneia stood back and folded her arms.
"He's always been like that?" She asked.
"Since he was a kid" Arwyn shrugged.
"You seem different from most in the Imperium, how come?" Araneia asked.
"Hmm, I used to be an ambassador to Inchya, to the far north of the continent. I lived among Lacermen, Hubun and Humans there, and they showed me nothing but kindness. Spending so much time away from the Imperium gives you a bit of a different perspective." Arwyn explained.
"Hmm, what happened to bring you back here?" Araneia asked.
"A new High Chancellor took command and severed ties with any remaining allies we had outside of Imperistia, so I was shipped away from the friends I had made over the years" Arwyn began. "When I returned, my nation's attitude had gone from terrible to downright... shit" Arwyn sighed.
"But you stayed in the Imperium forces?" Araneia asked. Arwyn nodded.
"I figured if I worked my way up the ranks, I might one day make a difference" Arwyn explained. "I have to admit though, when I stood in the rubble of the city, I nearly gave in to the hatred. I was the one who demanded the assault on Raryst and Pyre..." Arwyn admitted.
"I see" Araneia sighed.
"I know, I regret it well. I do hope those kids from Wynd made it out" Arwyn sighed.
"Kids from Wynd?" Araneia asked, looking surprised.
"Yeah, I assisted them when they arrived, and again when they were at Pyre, I didn't see them on the battlefield though" He explained.
"Interesting" Araneia thought.
"Anyway, here I am today. I refuse to see another city destroyed, this is the reason why I climbed the ranks, now is where I can make a difference" Arwyn nodded.
"The good of mankind will always shine through the darkness" Araneia nodded.