Mizu travelled to the isle of Farenai, which had finally let down their defences, in order to welcome a delegation from Inchaya to discuss the allied plan. Aran had travelled along too.
The meeting was taking place at the centre of the island at a settlement called Babel. It was an ancient citadel that towered over the whole island, rising into the clouds above. In the chamber at the very top, the three Crystalla of Farenai were sat at a round stone table. With a stone chair left empty for Mizu.
The large stone doors to the chamber rumbled open as Mizu and Aran walked inside.
"Araneia, I hadn't foreseen thine arrival" Tristal smiled. "It is indeed welcome, though" He nodded.
"You look... better, Araneia, in mind and soul" Brannam nodded.
"Though thy memories betray you lighter mood" The third Crystalla nodded. "I am the Crystalla of Memory. I hold the memories of every single being that has ever existed on this world. I am Memoria" They said in a hushed tone from beneath their hood.
"Greetings, Crystalla of Farenai, I am Mizu Kimura, Crystalla of The Tides" Mizu smiled as she sat.
"Hmm, yes, one of the older Crystalla of the wider world" Tristal nodded.
"Yeah, though I have only been a Crystalla for... nearly 35 years now" Mizu smiled.
"Indeed, only you and the... other, predate the newer generation" Memoria nodded.
"The other?" Mizu asked.
"Things will become clear in time, Crystalla of the Tides" Tristal smiled.
"We should discuss the matters at hand" Brannam shrugged as she leaned forward and rested her elbows on the table.
"Indeed. We have just over a year until the final battle will take place" Tristal sighed. "From the visions I can grasp, the death of one will save our world. A god has spoken to the chosen child, and has set in motion the plan to close the rift for good" He explained.
"The chosen child, Roisin?" Mizu asked.
"She is determined to be the one to make the sacrifice. She will not inform her friends about her decision, and she is plagued with... lonely dreams" Brannam explained.
"From a dive into her memories, she was gifted a Light Fragment, torn from the birth of the universe and condensed into a singular fragment. This fragment, when channelled with every Crystalla's power is enough to bend the fabric of our reality and allow the closing of the rift, and prevention of it reopening. This will come at the cost of the channellers' life" Memoria murmured in a solelm tone.
"It has to be her?" Mizu asked.
"No" Tristal replied. "But, as you well know, to channel the power of a Crystalla, one must be possessed of a certain bloodline to carry out the task" He added.
"I see" Mizu sighed as she sat back.
"We will of course pledge ourselves to the cause" Brannam spoke. "We would be fools not to, the life of everyone in this whole reality depends on this mission, that includes every single realm and being" She nodded.
"Indeed. Aodhan and Inchaya shall have the power of the Ancient Crystalla on their side" Memoria said, standing up.
"Do not expect however for the Infernal One to go quietly" Tristal warned.
"The Infernal One?" Aran asked. Tristal looked at her and nodded, before looking toward Memoria.
"The one named Infernus has visited this world, in the distant past, when the race known as the 'Tolmen' roamed this world, he offered the Tolmen a deal, 99% of their race would be offered up unto the Old Ones, in return they would leave this reality alone. They lied, of course, and have come to collect" Memoria said wistfully as they paced around the room.
"Who are the Tolmen?" Mizu pondered.
"The Tolmen are more commonly known to the wider world as the Gods, they were benevolent beings who gave most of their race to save the world, leaving only a few to watch over us" Memoria nodded. "It is a story that has fallen out of favour, it was twisted by the Celestial Harbingers who turned on and slaughtered their creators, leaving one alive, accidentally, but they too passed away very recently" He continued.
"The one that the girl, Roisin saw, I presume?" Aran asked.
"Yes" Memoria nodded once more. "Back when the great sacrifice took place. An infamous Tolman called Apathera betrayed his kind and pledged himself to their cause. He was swallowed into the rift and the three of us believe he was taken as a servant by the Old Ones, now we believe he has returned" Memoria continued.
"As Infernus?" Tristal frowned.
"Infernus is a God, a Tolman?" Mizu gasped as she stood up.
"Yes, he can recall some of his true memories, but even if they were to be restored, he would likely still serve the cause, even with Rychard Pyre stuck in his digital mind" Memoria explained.
"RYCHARD PYRE?!" Mizu shouted as her eyes widened, making Aran jump.
"Yes" Tristal nodded. "I knew that one would come as a shock to you, Mizu. You shared many meetings and drinks with him and his mother in the past. Not unsurprising for neighbouring nations" He continued.
"How did he end up...?" Mizu asked, confused.
"The body that Apathera or, Infernus currently inhabits is indeed the body of Rychard Pyre, twisted by nanotech" Tristal nodded.
"How... repulsive" Aran sighed.
"His intention was to control the Old Ones himself using nanotech. A short-sighted plan from a man who always believed himself to be the saviour of Crystalla" Brannam nodded.
"He saw Roisin as a tool for him to save the world, he never viewed her as a person and stole her life away so that he may declare himself King, or Emperor" Tristal said, as he looked at Aran. "You understand, she never got the chance to live free of those shackles" He added.
Aran nodded, and bowed.
"I understand, completely" Aran declared as she bowed.
"I knew that you would" Tristal smiled.
"Your soul is much like hers, Araneia" Memoria stated. "You are both filled with the potential for great kindness" They added. Aran pondered for a moment.
"Can I ask you something?" She said as she leant against the table.
"Speak freely, child" Brannam nodded.
"Abyssia and Lumina always spoke of a prophecy" Aran began.
"Ah yes, the children of Luna, one who would do great good and one who would do great evil" Tristal nodded. "They used that to justify many things" He added.
"Was there ever any truth to it?" Aran asked.
"Araneia" Tristal nodded. "There was, but it didn't refer to Roisin or her siblings. It never did" He shrugged as he sat back.
"I don't understand..." Aran sighed.
"One who would do great good, Aran Luna" Brannam smiled.
"One who would do great evil, Trel Luna" Memoria nodded. Aran's eyes widened as she frowned deeply.
"It was a cruel fate, written by the one who slew, the Crystalla of Fate" Tristal nodded. "It is fitting that you were the one who indeed took his life. Some would call that fate" He shrugged.
"On that note, due to how short we are on time, we cannot wait for a new Crystalla of Fate to be born, and so we must take the Crystalla Aether from you, and gift it to another" Brannam stated.
"Whom will it be?" Mizu asked.
"Arwyn, formerly of the nation of Imperistia" Memoria suggested.
"An Imperistian?!" Mizu frowned.
"Mizu, you come here to speak of unity, yet are aghast at the fact we are using a former enemy" Brannam shook her head. "Arwyn was a good man, and his brother, Hiran has been a great help in convincing the people of Farenai that the outside world is worth letting in" She continued.
"I suppose..." Mizu nodded.
"Then it shall be Arwyn" Aran nodded.