A round pond of dark water, edged with a silver and bronze border, filled up the center of the floor. There were no other pieces of furniture or fixtures in the chamber. The light came from the crystal walls.
Galais positioned us around the pond. I found myself between Brystagg and the bull-woman. We followed Galais's example of kneeling down to the pond's edge, so we were close to the water.
"I am Delphi. Sol Mother of Minos." The bull-woman introduced herself.
"I would not risk your cell breaking work Your Highness, if I did not feel the importance of what is to come," Delphi said to Brystagg.
Her next choice of words made my fears resurface.
"Apocalypse is in danger of a terrible fate. If Famine and Death do not return to the Lotus Bridge of their time and stop the oncoming attacks."
She raised her hand to stay Brystagg's questions. And drew our attention towards the pond's dark surface.
"I think it's best to show you the fact that awaits your time Famine. If you do not stop the course of this danger."
Her fine hand swept the pond's surface to call upon images to the water.
I gulped down a nervous knot when I saw Trix and Leinard entangled within the gold coin olive tree of the Lotus Bridge.
Possessed Death had called upon cakra magic with great magnitude. This caused the Aueralius Brothers to writhe about their binds with heightened pain.
My hands trembled; skin went clammy as I felt their agony from those brothers' bodies. They suffered burns from the golden fire. Their skin was unbearably hot. It throbbed and went numb into an uncomfortable coldness. My mind was splintering with pain.
"It hurts Death." I cried out in thought.
"I feel it!" Death yelped with his own begging for the pain to stop.
"UGH!" I screamed as I felt the brothers' bodies explode into rays of golden light.
The light pieced the black tunnels to make them crumble into nothing. A fierce roar and deafening bellow overwhelmed my ears.
The walls that had contained the demons and criminals were destroyed. They were able to escape out into the tiers. People were slain where they stood. They had their chi stolen to be used against them. Or were devoured brutally.
My heart ached with defeat. It sweltered with anger, trampled hope and realization of failure from the knights who struggled to hold back the magnanimous tide of damage tearing down Hell's Labyrinth. They were able to see the damage spilling out into the Second District. A hopeless effort and end.
More pain stabbed my heart as the pond's image focused on the fate that befell each one of my friends.
They were being nullified by a demon. Tortured by a human. They had their chi sucked out until they were shrivelled shells. Burned and brutalized. Destroyed beyond repair. I felt all their fates as my own.
"STOP! Please !" I cried and doubled over with pain.
"No! You must see the course of events!" Delphi shouted defiantly.
A power kept my eyes witnessing the long-term devastation played out in the pond's image.
The Second District laid waste under the claim of demons led by the hiruda. Humans were either devoured or forced into slavery to demons only to be eaten later. Most lurked as empty shells linked to the will of another or having to eat their own kind to survive. There was no beauty left in the world. No honor nor hope. Nothing resembled the essence of Solkind. Humanity was null. The skies were constantly dark and starless. As smog and a foulness choked the air.
I sniffed and wiped at the tears that had dirtied my face. Pressing a hand to my chest to hold back the stabbing pain breaking my heart.
The pond turned black and formless again.
I felt Colin's arms wrap my waist from behind to keep me steady.
"The fate of Minos also shares this one. Should you and Death fail to overcome the hiruda."
Delphi's voice assumed her soothing tones. Her hands tenderly stroked my flushed cheeks.
"Gat Shiem's fall was written in the stars. There was nothing either of you could have done to stop it. However, the hiruda's event is not fixed with fate. You can stop it. Both you and Death."
I gulped down the remainder of the pain. I felt and checked on Death when my head had cleared.
"I'm okay now Famine. This pain was worse than what I had felt at Gat Shiem." Death sighed.
"Is that why you asked me to bring the boy?" Brystagg asked.
I frowned when he appeared unaffected by the pond's vision.
Delphi nodded. "The Zaldizko Prophecy paints a dark picture if we use dark colors."
Her face lifted with a serene smile, which stirred feelings of peace to soothe away my remaining pains.
"Right now. I am seeing a beautiful color of determination, love and hope from this boy's eyes. His heart is beating with pure virtue. Sol has a bright future if this boy's colors remain so."
I exhaled a few breaths to reclaim my composure.
"Prince Brystagg. His Royal Highness, King Sirius's boys are the deciders to the fate we have borne witness to." Galais added on. "If they are removed from the Lotus Bridge Primary Core, before the Hiruda calls upon the Sacral magic, then the Hiruda can be overcome."
"His boys?" Brystagg's voice tensed with a bitter coldness.
"Yes. Since he had taken Ariella as his queen. They are his."
I noticed a sadness in Brystagg's eyes. He met mine without hiding it.
"So you're from my future?" Brystagg voice was emotionless as he asked me the question.
"It seems," I carefully answered.
"Obviously you know of my kin."
I sighed, sensing his curiosity.
"If you're referring to the men on the Lotus Bridge. Yes I know them. They are Captain Trix and Lieutenant Colonel Leinard of the Evadale Knight Order."
I flinched at Brystagg's change of expression. Somehow, I had said golden words that made his sadness go bye-bye.
"Trent and Leinard don't belong to the Illuminate Group?"
I sensed his hope for my answer to confirm a no.
"No." I reassured him and yelped at the stinging pinch Colin had given my thigh.
"What?! I'm sure they would have found out eventually from Delphi." I signed to Colin. Running my hands through my hair at the end.
Brystagg released a deep sigh. His face relaxed into a calm expression. He was relieved by the fact?
"You're going to need my help back to that Lotus Bridge." Brystagg declared.
He looked to where Lyra knelt. She had been quiet and carefully observing our reactions.
"Are you with me Lyra?"
She sighed and lowered her eyes. "Since when have I ever disagreed with your final orders, Sire?"
Lyra stared me hard in the eye. "You can save my daughter from her fate back there?"
"If Colin and I get back to the Lotus Bridge. I most likely could." I reassured her despite being uncertain.
Lyra flashed me a cocky smile. "Guess it's any reason to speed up the mining progress."
"You won't have time for this. We have done what we can to ensure Famine's path of fate, the Hiruda made, lead to our favor. Events on the Lotus Bridge are moving quickly and further from my power," Delphi said as she stood.
She prompted us to follow her lead out of the chamber.
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