Chapter 1: The Reunion
Edgar paced around the room impatiently. He just couldn't wait to see everyone again! It had been six long years since he and his friends, the "Warriors of Light", had vanquished Kefka in his evil tower. "Hmmm." Edgar thought to himself, "I wonder how everyone has been these past years." Edgar could remember how shaken everyone was after the great battle. He too had indeed struggled with the past and had lost much sleep due to continuous nightmares of past events. A knock at the door brought Edgar back to reality.
"Sire?" a familiar voice asked.
"Yes what is it Chancellor?" Edgar questioned.
Chancellor Fazra took a step forward and bowed his head. "Sire I bring news of your friends' status."
"And what would that be?" Edgar asked with a smile.
"Well sir, they're presently moving through Figaro Desert. Our chocobo scouts should be intercepting them any minute now."
"Good." Edgar said with a cheerful tone, "Make the preparations then. I want this castle spotless when they arrive. Oh and before I forget, tell the cook to make a cake for them too. I want it to be a surprise for our guests so make it a special one."
"As you wish, m'lord." The chancellor replied.
The Chancellor shut the door and muttered something under his breath. Edgar couldn't help laughing. He knew the Chancellor didn't like the extra tasks Edgar gave him, but nevertheless he did them without question. It was something Edgar admired in Chancellor Fazra. Edgar even recalled a time when he had asked Fazra to clean his room as a child. He was just a boy then, but he gave the man quite a headache whenever he did something just to make him angry. Edgar paced back to his throne and sat down. Sleep seemed so comforting in this time of endless waiting, but Edgar just sat there at his throne twirling the ring on his finger trying to figure out what he was going to say to his friends when and if they ever arrived.
"When the hell are we ever gonna get there?!" Relm asked impatiently.
"Soon Relm. Just be patient." Celes answered with a smile.
"I know I know." Relm said, "But this really sucks. I mean, it's bad enough that Edgar has to live in a desert, but I don't even see any of his scouts anywhere."
"Relm is right Celes." Locke Cole agreed, "If Edgar wants us to even find his castle, he should really think of relocating or hiring better scouts."
"Quiet you two." Celes said with a tone Locke didn't particularly like, "I'll not listen to this constant whining all the way to Figaro. I'm tired, my feet ache, and I could really use a bath right about now. So if you don't mind, please keep your complaints to yourself."
"Yes ma'am." Locke and Relm cried out in unison
"Look over there!" Cyan exclaimed. "It's the scouts!"
"We're saved!" Relm cried out.
"Hello good travelers!" one of the riders yelled. "We've come to escort you to Figaro."
"It's about damn time." Relm muttered.
"Quiet you!" Celes said sharply.
"A thousand apologies for the delay, Lady Celes." One of the riders said, "It's just that with all the recent sand storms, it's getting harder and harder to find just about anything in this godforsaken desert."
"It's quite alright." Celes yelled back, "It's our fault for not waiting until the airship was fixed." The riders both chuckled and beckoned for the group to follow. As Celes and the others walked behind them, Celes also wondered what she was going to say when she finally saw Edgar again after six long years.
Emperor Geshtal stood in front of the large window, his mind racing. Finally after six long years he would be able to have his revenge on the Warriors of Light. Just the very thought of choking that bastard Edgar brought a smile to his face.
"Sir?" a sentry asked.
"Yes what is it you little whelp?" Geshtal asked a little annoyed, "Don't you know I hate being interrupted when I'm thinking?!"
"Very sorry, m'lord." The soldier replied. "It's just that we have confirmed reports that the others are arriving at Figaro. Just thought you'd like to know, sir.”
Very well then soldier," Emperor Geshtal said, "I will forgive your insolence this time, but make no mistake. The next time you come barging in here without permission, your head will be on that wall."
The sentry glanced over at the wall to his right fully understanding the Emperor's words. On the wall hung the heads of Emperor Geshtal's previous enemies, as well as some of the "insolent soldiers" Emperor Geshtal spoke of. The sentry gulped, took a bow, and left the room in quite a hurry.
"Edgar." The Emperor muttered under his breath, "Live these next few days to their fullest, for they shall be your last!"
Edgar sat on the throne trying to fight off the urge to fall asleep. Finally, there was a knock at the door. "Sire, your friends are here." Chancellor Fazra said rather excitedly.
"Excellent! Send them in at once!" Edgar exclaimed with great joy.
Celes and the others stepped into the throne room and immediately gave shouts of happiness. "Edgar! It's so good to see you!" Celes exclaimed.
"Aye it is King of Figaro. Thou art truly a sight for mine eyes." Cyan said with a bow.
"The feeling's mutual my dear friends." Edgar said with a smile. "Come I have prepared a great feast for you all. Let us retire to the dining hall and talk more of these lost years with some food in our bellies."
"I couldn't agree more!" Gau exclaimed. "I appreciate the offer but if you don't mind, I'd like to freshen up a bit before dinner. I smell worse than a chocobo and I could really use a hot bath." Celes said humbly.
"It's no problem at all." Edgar assured, "Ask one of the maids to show you to the bathing room."
"Thanks Edgar." Celes said with a smile, "And it really is great to see you again."
Edgar blushed at the compliment and beckoned for the others to follow him to the dining hall. Across the room, an evil presence was watching. He had other plans for the group, but he would have to wait for the perfect moment to strike.
At dinner, Terra, Gau, Locke, Umaro, Setzer, Shadow and all the others laughed as they told stories about what had happened over the years. Most of the stories were quite humorous, although some of them caught Edgar's attention. For instance Gau had spoken earlier of strange monsters appearing on the Veldt. One such monster, a half behemoth/half dragon made Edgar worry. Finally Edgar inquired as to when this monster first revealed itself.
"I believe it was almost a week ago." Gau answered. "In fact we all saw it a few days back as we were traveling here."
"He's right Edgar." Locke Cole interrupted. "I thought it was just my imagination at first, but as I looked at it closely, I noticed it had not two but seven eyes. Seven evil eyes."
"This is disturbing news." Edgar said, sitting heavily in his chair.
"Aye it is your grace." Cyan agreed. "In fact there have been reports of such a monster attacking villages and various towns along The Veldt. I doth believe it would be wise to investigate this matter a little further."
"Yes Cyan." Edgar said. "If this monster truly is such a threat to those poor villagers, then it would probably be a good idea to go help kill the beast." "
"Precisely what I was thinking my lord." Cyan said. "I'm getting pretty rusty these days anyway. It would be nice test out my skills once more."
"I agree." Gau shot in.
"So it's settled then." Edgar said. "Tomorrow morning, we will set sail for the Veldt. Bring any weapons and supplies you may need. As for me, I shall retire to bed. I suggest you all do the same. We're all going to need plenty of rest if we're going to be hunting a beast of this size."
Locke awoke the next morning feeling as refreshed as ever. That wine the night before had really knocked him out. As he stretched and sat up to get out of bed, he felt a sharp pain in his forehead. Suddenly a knock at the door alerted him.
"Locke are you up yet? Locke? Locke Cole you lazy bastard! If you don't get up this very minute I swear I'll come in there and steal your sheets!" Celes yelled through the door.
"I'm up! I'm up!" Locke yelled back with a yawn. "I've got this bump on my forehead though the size of my fist. I think that nursing me would do a lot better than yelling at me."
"Oh that's just a bruise from last night." Celes said as she entered the room. "Last night after dinner, you got drunk and gave us quite a show. Haha in fact, you even did the best impression of a chocobo I've ever seen. After awhile though, you began feeling a little dizzy. But when Cyan offered to help you to your room, you insisted you could make it. You stumbled about two or three steps before falling and bumping your head on a chair. I swear it's a side of you I've never before Locke Cole."
"Yeah well I'm sure you enjoyed it thoroughly Celes." Locke retorted. "Now if you'd kindly leave the room, I would like to get dressed."
"Yeah well let me know if you need any help." Celes said with a laugh. "We wouldn't want you bumping that head of yours again."
Locke sneered at Celes's little joke and continued to get dressed. How could he the great treasure hunter Locke Cole get drunk off a few sips of whine?
Across the hall, Cyan was also waking up. The warrior hadn't gotten much sleep but nevertheless he felt it was his duty to be on time. Slowly, he crept out of bed, banging his knee in the process.
"Great Goddess almighty that doth smart!" he yelped.
The poor fool then proceeded to put on his armor. One by one he fastened the leather thongs of his glorious armor, fastening his sword Masamune to his side. His boots felt heavier than normal though. Cyan figured it was probably just the lack of sleep the night before making him think that. "Ahhhh. What a glorious morning it is." He said to himself. Cyan heard a rumble in his stomach. "Ha! My stomach doth know it's time to eat." He said with a laugh. "Perhaps I should go see what we art having for breakfast." As he stepped out the door, Cyan noticed the rest of the group emerging from their rooms as Celes continuously yelled for them all to get out of bed. He even saw that poor fool Locke Cole stumble out of his doorway. "Hehe." Cyan thought. "He must still be fighting the wine from last night.
At breakfast, the group told more stories and jokes. The funniest of course revolving around Locke's show at the dinner table the night before. Edgar even told a few stories about his travels over the years. He even showed the group some of the souvenirs he had brought back to the castle with him. Suddenly though, without warning, a creature leapt onto the table and darted at Edgar. Setzer, with the speed of a cat, threw one of his razor sharp Trump Cards at the beast piercing it in the back of its neck. The creature fell to the ground lifeless.
"Good work Setzer." Gau said. "But what on earth was that thing?"
"An assassin." Edgar muttered silently. "Clearly someone overhead us about our plans to go investigate that monster, and sent this thing to kill me. Setzer thank you so much. I owe you my life dear friend."
"You are welcome Edgar." Setzer said solemnly. "But I think breakfast time is over. We should set sail soon."
"I agree." Edgar replied. "All of you hurry and pack your things. We set sail in two hours!"
Kefka walked through the great hall towards Geshtal's chamber. As he reached the door, a sentry stepped in front of him. "State your business." The sentry said with a low tone.
"My business does not concern you little soldier." Kefka replied. "And if I told you, I'd have to kill you, so get out of my way!"
The sentry immediately cleared a path for Kefka and bowed as Kefka walked past him. Kefka swung open the doors to the chamber and scanned the room. Geshtal was standing next to his window.
"Sire?" Kefka asked.
"Yes what is it Kefka?" the emperor replied.
"Sir I bring news from the spies within Figaro castle." Kefka answered. "Apparently our little assassin didn't do his job correctly."
"Blast it!" Emperor Geshtal yelled angrily. "That stupid fool! Where is he?!"
"He's dead sire." Kefka explained. "Sliced through the neck I believe."
"Damn it all to hell!" the emperor screamed. "That idiot! Oooh call off the rest of the assassins for now. We'll get Edgar tonight in his sleep."
"I'm afraid that won't be possible m'lord." Kefka said.
"And why not?" Geshtal asked sarcastically.
"Well because you see sir," Kefka said. "Edgar is not at Figaro Castle at the moment."
"Well then where is he?!" the emperor bellowed.
"We're not sure sire." Kefka replied. "Our assassin was killed before he could relay any information to us. However we have reason to believe that he and that group of raga bonds who defeated us six years ago have set sail for the Veldt."
"Well then assemble a group of your finest warriors and go after them." Emperor Geshtal ordered. "I don't want those fools reaching the Veldt. I have a very special monster there that is fulfilling his duties. If those idiots find him and kill him, I will have lost a very valuable asset. Is that understood?"
"Perfectly m'leige." Kefka replied. "I will make the preparations immediately."
Kefka turned around and walked out of the room, his red eyes flaring. "Edgar, you insolent bastard." He thought himself. "I will find you. And when I do, I will make you pay for what you did to me all those years ago! Mwahahahahaha!"
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