Chapter 38- In the Beginning of Time




            Topik had escorted Jack and Sarah to their quarters.  It was amazing that they had what had to be at least a thirty-room mansion all to their selves.  The house was truly large, comprising of way more bedrooms and bathrooms than two people could ever need.  Yet, they didn’t intend to spend much time in the house.  They had much more important things to do.


            The grounds that Topik showed them for training was a short teleportation from the house.  Set with an overlook of some unnamed body of water, the fighting area was quite well preserved.  Then again, everything here was probably just an illusion.  Or maybe the entities here just created anything that they wanted.  After all, Topik said that they could look like whatever they chose.  Why not be able to live wherever the wished?


            Since they had not brought much, there was very little unpacking to do.  The closet of the Master Bedroom was filled with clothes, both training and casual, that were perfectly sized to each of them.  The Master Bath had towels and robes with the initials JCM and SIM printed on them.


            “Sarah Inverse McKlane…” Sarah had said when she saw here initials.  “I guess that’s what it stands for.”  She smiled in the thought of being already married to Jack.  It was interesting that maybe the initials were like that because that’s how she had always pictured it.


            “And Jack Christopher McKlane,” Jack said.  “How did they know my middle name, anyway…”


            The kitchen was nearly fully automated, and fully stocked.  It included a computer that had been preprogrammed to prepare all of their favorite meals.  Each chair was specially fitted for each of them. 


            There was a library, which Topik had told them served a dual purpose.  In addition for a ‘charming addition to an already extravagant house,’ as Topik had put it, it also served as a knowledge base for just about every magical theory in existence.  He had said that some books were direct copies from the library of Aristrand Clarist, but the reference was lost on the two of them.  In addition to magical studies, there were books on the study of temporal distortion, inter-planer travel and just about anything else that could possible be desired by the young ones.


            Everything, from the seats in the hot tub to the toothbrushes, was designed to match the two of them perfectly, taking the form of the object that they had most preferred in the real world.  The house had been made for them, as creepy as it sounded.  This was their home for the time that they would spend here.


              Topik had requested to meet them in the mansion’s east wing lounge to begin to answer their questions and prepare for their training.  The lounge was a semi-large room with dark mahogany wall treatment and a few long, black leather couches around an elaborate coffee table.  Topik was already waiting there when the two teens arrived.  Lying across the couch, he certainly looked like he had made himself comfortable.


            “Relaxed?” Jack asked, as he and Sarah walked into the room in a fresh change of clothes, namely sets of black nylon warm-ups. 


            “Very,” Topik said jokingly as he rose from the couch.  “Please,” he said, indicating the couch.  “Have a seat.”  The two travelers sat as directed and waited for further instruction.


            “We’re here to learn, Topik,” Jack said.  “We’re ready for whatever sort of training you have planned.”


            “Yes,” Topik said.  “Train you will.  We want to instruct each of you to better the particular skills that make you, well…you.  Sarah, you’ll be working mainly with Fenreir, here,” Topik indicated the empty space beside him just as another figure appeared before them.  He was slightly taller than Topik, a well built man with blonde hair.


            “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Epitorum of Elosia,” Fenreir said.


            “Please…” Sarah said somewhat wearisome.  “Don’t call me that.  Call me Sarah.  And, while we’re here, an full explanation of this Epitorum thing and what it entails would be appreciated.”


            “Very well, Sarah,” Fenreir said, happy to not waste time and get right to the point.  He decided to open his explanation with an example.  “Have you ever had instances where you thought you were seeing the future, Sarah?  And then, these events eventually happened just as, or at least close to, as you had seen them in visionary instances such as dreams.”


            “…Yes,” Sarah said hesitantly. 


            “Well, one of the abilities that was born into your genetic code was the ability to see down the Timestream.  Basically, the Timestream is like a web of occurrences.  It spreads out in all directions as more and more choices in history are made.  These decisions cause the Timestream to expand and wind upon itself.  Basically, it is the fabric of history and it is the fabric of the future.  When dealing with fourth dimensional travel, you have to accept the fact that multiple things in different time frames are all happening simultaneously.  It’s just a matter of seeing things in a four dimensional world.”


            “I think I understand,” Sarah said.  “So, basically, in my dreams, I’m seeing things on this Time stream that haven’t happened yet,” Sarah summed up.  “That’s not that confusing.”


            “Also, have you been experiencing headaches or possibly cramps right before something important happens?”


            “Yes, actually,” Sarah said.  “I was having headaches…well, before Lavos attacked both in 1999 AD and in 12,000 BC.  I don’t think I ever made the connection, though.”


            “That is your ability beginning to manifest itself.  At the moment, you can only see into the forth dimension when you are unconscious; when your mind is at it’s calmest.  What we’re going to teach you is to use your ability to see into the Time stream at will.”


            “And to use it to your advantage,” Topik interjected.  “We’re going to teach you how to fight with it, mixing it with your ability with the sword.  Fundamentally, it’s a style that uses prescience to see briefly into the future and know what the enemy’s next plan is.  Once you perfect it, you’ll be nearly invincible in hand to hand combat.  I promise you that you will be amazed at how potent it is.”


            “And your other seemingly innate ability,” Fenreir said.  “Is based on the way that your mind processes information.  This is not something that you have to learn, so much as you have to hone.  All of that ability is already there, but, basically, your mind has advanced to the point where you process information faster and more effectively than a normal human.  Almost like a computer, in fact.  Jack, you may have noticed an increase in her analytical nature recently.”  Jack nodded.


            “Yeah, I thought something was wrong with the way she was acting.  Is that okay that she can do this?”


            “When the time comes for battle, Sarah, you will be an extremely potent general and tactician.  Don’t worry if this all sounds like a lot now, though.  We’re going to go slowly and take all the time we need.”  Sarah didn’t answer for a moment.


            “Why a general?” Sarah asked.  “I don’t recall the need to wage war on anyone.  We’re going against Lavoids.  They’re just single organisms.”  Topik sighed.


            “You already know a good deal about the origin of the Lavoids.  You already know they came from the planet earth, designed as a biological weapon.  But perhaps you should know just how far the species is spread.”


            “They have entire armies,” Fenreir said.  “The Lavoid here was probably just a scout or someone who had discharged from a main force either by will or for other means.  We actually have reason to believe that Lavos was one of the first Lavoids ever made.  The planet, Elosia, was designed as a test by the human creators to see if a Lavoid could recreate human society.  It was like a test to see if it’s abilities in gene pool manipulation were working.”


            “Naturally, since you two came out of the planet, it was a success,” Topik continued.  “But consider the fact that Lavoid do not always go by themselves into the reaches of space, such as Lavos apparently did.  Also, they do not exist separate from each other, as well as Lavos seemingly did.  In fact they live in communities, most often. They exist in places called hive worlds, living and operating while out of their shells.  Each of their shells are like their space ships, you must realize. The shell which they use is something basically existing as bio armor and a means of travel.  You have seen the actual form of Lavos, Jack.  They are about man sized.  When the times comes to go out and do the bidding of the Queen, they climb in their ships and travel the stars.”


            “And then there are the hive fleets, as well,” Fenreir said.  “Giant, living ships of biological Lavoid matter, traveling the stars by use of the Warp, or Chaos as you know it.  They house the thousands of Farilii and other such foot soldiers and elite warriors.  The ships then go and make landing on planets where they need to take over.”


            “But why?” Jack asked.  “Wouldn’t there be a lot of them to feed on just one planet?”


            “Yes…” Fenreir said.  “In studying their organization, there is normally one actual Lavoid for each ship, or set of ships.  He acts mostly as the commander.  The rest of the creatures are basically servants.  They do whatever the commander Lavoid says.  They are extremely militant, mostly due to their chaotic nature.  The normal procedure involves landing on the world.  If there is resistance, the armies of Farilii take care of it.  After that, the Lavoid will imbed himself in the surface and absorb the planet’s energy and the genes of the creature on that planet.”


            “And then when they’re done…” Sarah said.


            “Bam,” Topik finished.  “The planet is of no use, so they waste it.  As I have told Jack, for some unexplainable reason, their young seem to only grow in conditions of nuclear winter.  Perhaps it is the unexplainable nature of evil that makes it so.  But regardless, millions of lives are lost and the world becomes another Hive World, initially inhabited by the Lavoid and his offspring.  Eventually, everything there reproduces and becomes stronger until it is time to seek out another world.  Additionally, they normally go for planets with a large population and variety of life.  This provides the most fetching catch in terms of DNA.”


            “And so you shall know that there will be war, Jack,” Topik said.  “There will be much war.  But, they will die.  You will know how to kill them.  You will have the weapons to kill them and the men who know how to use the weapons.”


            “What about worlds like this, where there was only one Lavoid?” Sarah asked.  “Are there such?”


            “Maybe if the Queen of the sector doesn’t deem the world ‘worth’ sending a full force.  This is more in the cases where the planet is very primitive before the Lavoid gets there.  It is like a gamble on the Lavoid’s part, hoping that the planet will eventually bare strong combinations of DNA.  Remember, time means nothing to this species.  For all definitions of the word, they are immortal.  The one on Elosia was the first recorded Lavoid death of a Class C in millions of years.”


            “And naturally, with no one to thin out their numbers, they have spread quite far,” Jack mused.


            “Quite true,” Topik said.  “Far and thick.  We estimate yearly casualties from the species to average somewhere in the area of 170,000,000,000 within the galaxy.”  Everyone was silent.


            “So we will have battles.  And we will need generals, as our organization grows,” Jack said.  “Sarah…I guess you’re a godsend in that regard, too.”


            “Why do I…have these abilities?” she finally asked.  “Is there something wrong with me?”


            “You, as odd as this may sound,” Topik said, “are the result of countless years of a breeding program that was used by the Lavoid to create you.  He ingeniously blended the bloodlines of specific families, picking out the proper genetic code to achieve the combination that gave you these powers.  Namely, they were the powers that the Lavoid wanted to absorb into his own DNA for his children, once your genes were combined with Jack’s.”


            “Jack, as you know, is the other end of the puzzle,” Fenreir said.  “The Planeswalker.  The One of Lavoid Born.  He is the one human who had been born of the artificial fertilization of a human egg by the powers of a Lavoid.   Jack, you have inherited the capability to utilize the energy source known as Chaos.  You have already begun to manifest this energy, if you recall the events during the Fall of Zeal.”


            “I remember,” Jack said with a nod.  “That’s not something you forget.”


            “Basically, you two are Elosia’s Chosen,” Topik said.  “Or, the ones chosen by Elosia’s Lavoid, Lavos.  If you didn’t believe in destiny up until this point, you may wish to reconsider your beliefs.”


            “But didn’t you just say that each choice we make determines our path down the timeline?” Sarah asked.  “Would that imply that the future is a result of free will?” 


            “Yes, to a degree,” Topik said.  Fenreir clarified for them.


            “Jack and you have made all of your own choices in life.  Your feelings for each other are not something that was forced.  That worked out well for Lavos.  Basically, all he can do is put the Planeswalker and the Epitorum together and hope that they procreate.  Jack, when Lavos awoke in 12,000 BC, you were asleep in the palace, safe in your room.  Did you ever wonder why he reached out and sent you in particular to the year 1984, of all times?”


            “I guess he was removing me from the destruction and sending me…” he paused.  “So I could meet Sarah…” 


“In addition,” Topik added.  “Lavos had had some minimal control over Jack.  Basically, he had not chosen for him, but he has lead Jack down certain paths of the time stream.  Any time when you felt you were being pulled somewhere, Jack, like how you felt on the island of the Northern Palace, it was the Lavoid using his proximity to you in order to guide your actions.”


Everyone was silent for a few moments until Jack spoke.


“So now that we’re together, basically it’s time to wreck some serious havoc on the race that has been manipulating us.”


“It’s very rare for a Planeswalker to become free,” Topik said.  “As I explained to you, it is impossible for a Planeswalker to engage in final combat with his parent Lavoid.  At that range, the control that Lavoid can extend over the Planeswalker turns him into really nothing more than a puppet.  For a Planeswalker to become free, there have to be other individuals on the same planet that are capable of killing the parent Lavoid for him.  Elosia is a rather odd occurrence in that there were about twelve humans that all had enough strength to kill the Class C that was inhabiting this planet.  Some of them could do it on their own and others would have required working together, but none the less, there were many potential Lavoid Killers on your planet.”


            Jack held out his hand and counted the people that could have been the potentials.  “The boy, Crono, the girls Marle and Lucca.  The Robot and the Frog and the Cave Woman.  Janus, or Magus.  Tristan, Aragorn and Rayith.  Sarah…”


            “That’s only eleven,” Sarah said.


            “…And who else?” Jack asked.


            “Your sister,” Topik said.  “Schala.  She had an incredible amount of power before she was condemned to her state of living with the Nooze.  Her powers have been reduced to a fraction of what they once were, though.”


            “Have been?” Jack said.  “You mean she’s…”


            “Oh, alive and well, as much as ‘alive’ means in her condition,” Topik said.


            “That’s great!” Jack said, happy that his sister wasn’t gone.  “Where is she, though?”


            “She also took it upon herself to seek out other Lavoids and kill them.  She’s been traveling through space since the day Lavos was killed, looking for another one.  She’s in a state of hibernation, at the moment.”


            “Oh…” Jack said, somewhat discouraged.


            “Wait a minute,” Sarah said, thinking back to what was said before.  “If Lavos wanted the DNA from…well, mine and Jack’s child, then why would he attack the world in 1999.  In the normal flow of time, Jack and I weren’t even together when he attacked.  Why would he kill us before then?”


            “Ironically, we think he gave up on you two,” Topik said.  “He just considered that fact that you had known each other for most of your lives and had been at child bearing age for about four to five years but nothing had happened between you.  You have to understand something.  To a Lavoid, time doesn’t really matter that much at all.  As far as he was concerned, it would have probably been easier to start over.  He had all the time he needed, so it wasn’t as if he was in a rush or anything.”  Jack forced laughter.


            “Well, we’ll show him who he should have given up on, eh?” Jack asked rhetorically.  “He’ll pay for not killing me with the blood of his species…”


            “Easy, Jack,” Sarah said, putting a hand on his shoulder to calm him down.  “Just relax.”  Jack breathed deeply, closed his eyes, and nodded.


            “Topik,” Jack said. 




            “To kill a Lavoid, you need a magical energy at least matching that of their own, correct?”


            “For the most part, yes,” Topik said.  “Most Lavoid-based creatures are like that.  Either their regeneration abilities or their magical resistance is too strong.”


            “Okay,” Jack said.  “How would one go about creating a new type of magic?  Not just one new spell, but what if one wanted to create an entire category of spell?  A new school of magic.”


            “Chaos, correct?” Topik asked.  Jack nodded.  “Well, we’ll have to begin with the basics,” he said.  “While you actually know quite a bit, you’re not sure why you know it or how it actually works.  Once we teach you about sources of magical energy and you learn more about how to access the Chaos energy source, then I will go about the construction of a spell with you.  You realize, of course, that you will be just about the only one able to perform these spells.  You, and others like you, that is.  It would be a school of magic solely usable by something that can access Chaos energy…and I don’t think we’ll be teaching the Lavoids said spells.”


            “Excellent,” Jack said.  “We should get on that right away.”


            “Whatever you wish,” Topik said.  “We are merely here to teach, and you are here to learn.  What we learn shall be a mix of both what we want to teach and what you wish to learn.  Whenever you are ready, we can begin to unlock the mysteries of the universe for you.”


            “And how will we learn as such?”


            “Ah, yes,” Topik said.  “We have our methods.  It’s not quite what you’re used to, though.  It’s something call Tactical Indoctrination.”


            “And what exactly is it?” Sarah asked.


            “It’s hypnotherapy, functionally,” Fenreir said.  “All of the information is condensed into radio-type waves.  Then we just sort of beam it into your head.”


            “Is it harmful?”


            “Hardly,” Fenreir said.  “It’s just quick.”


            “So it’s like instantly downloading information?” Sarah asked.


            “Well, it’s not instantaneous,” Topik said.  “But it’s pretty damned fast.  We normally measure the information to a standard, but basically you can learn about 40 styles of combat in roughly five minutes.”


            “That is fast…” Jack said.  “Seeing how I took years to learn what little I know as it is.”


            “Quite,” Topik said.  “You’ll meet the tactical indoctrination room later today, if all goes well.”


            “Excellent,” Jack said.  “Then we’ll be learning much more than I anticipated, but that is most definitely a good thing and there is no doubt about that.”




“Beings that are born of dreams must return to them...The power of Lavos can make hopes and dreams come true...” - Enlightened Woman at Zeal Palace




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