Tales Of Syphona Fan Fiction ❯ Requiem of Symphonia ❯ 0 - A Campfire Story ( Prologue )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Requiem of Symphonia
By Unfinished Song
Prologue: A Campfire Story

The fire crackled loudly as Colette placed her stick a little too close and lost yet another marshmallow to the open flame. “Oh no! I did it again!”
“You’re such a klutz, Colette,” Lloyd said with a smile as he always did when things went against the girl’s better favor.
“I know. I’m sorry.”
The young man patted her on the back. “Don’t apologize, you dork,” he told her with a friendly grin.
“Oh. I’m sorry,” she amended with a smile.
“Colette, for the last time: don’t apologize!” he said in exasperation. “You didn’t do anything wrong.”
“Okay, I’m sorry.”
“Ha ha hah! I thought you would be used to Colette’s apologies by now, Lloyd,” Genis said with a laugh.
Lloyd sulked. “Shut up, Genis.”
“ARGH! All my marshmallows keep coming out burned!” Sheena hollered, finally giving up on her latest attempt and threw it, stick and all, into the fire.
“Sheena, maybe… if you watched more closely how long you held it over the fire…,” Presea suggested, munching on yet another of her perfectly toasted gooey treats. The physically young girl’s eyes wondered to stare at Raine who ate an almost black marshmallow without even a wince.
The half elf woman blinked when she felt the eyes on her and turned to the pink haired human. “What?”
Obviously, the half-elf woman was used to failed attempts at making such treats.
“The banshee is almost as bad as the professor when it comes to cooking,” Zelos commented with a grin.
“What-did-you-say!” both women yelled at the red-head.
Zelos shrugged. “Feel the love. Ha hah”
“Perhaps it is best that you do not anger the women, Zelos,” Regal offered. Now free of his cuffs as his vow stated he would be once the world was one again, he also had perfectly roasted marshmallows and was making a smore for Genis. The boy accepted the yummy and munched happily.
“Awe I’m not frightened of my cute hunnies.” It wasn’t three seconds after he had spoke that he was begging for mercy from the two very angry females that attacked him. “Hey! I’m sorry! I’m sorry, ok?!”
“That’s not enough, Zelos!” Sheena screamed at him, pulling his hair.
“I like to think of my cooking as ‘creative’!” Raine added in while smacking him in the ribs with her staff. “And when did I ever become your ‘honey’!”
“Yeah, Zelos!” the Summoner demanded.
Whilst everyone was apparently entertained by the recent antics of Tethe’alla’s Chosen, there was one among them that was completely oblivious. For Kratos, the antics of the group brought back too many memories of times so very long past. They were powerful memories and feelings he had locked away behind the angelic ‘sense’ of unfeeling if only to protect his already fragile heart. No matter, he thought. Returning to Derris-Kharlan will soon put such things out of reach.
The only problem he found with his choice was explaining it to Lloyd.
Why did the thought of doing so make him feel so saddened? No, he reminded himself. This is the most logical choice.
Yuan had kept insisting that he should stay and help with the situation between half-elves, humans, and elves, but he had something Kratos didn’t: Yuan was still a half-elf. And he… he wasn’t even a human anymore. Maybe in appearance but anyone that could sense a mana signature would know what he truly was. He was an ex-human: a Summon Spirit’s Seal turned into an angle by ancient powers, Aionis, and a Cruxis Crystal. There was no part for him to play in this new world, and he felt deep down inside that he would only slow the progress in making the newborn world into the place that Martel and Mithos had so wanted it to be.
A world where everyone was free.
His heart ached for the past: for things he wished he could change, for things he wanted to relive, but as with all things that had come and gone, it was impossible. However, even after four thousand years, he still found himself childishly wishing for the impossible.
It was all unattainable. History would remember Mithos as Lord Yggdrasil, the Splitter of Worlds, and the tyrant of many ages.
“Campfires are good for stories,” he said, surprising everyone including his self. What am I thinking? I swore to not even think of that time again…
Everyone paused having heard him speak for the first time that evening.
“I suppose that means you have a story to tell?” Raine stated more than asked, returning to where she had been seated once she and Sheena had finished beating on poor Zelos. The Chosen gave an obvious sigh of relief.
“Hmm.” A long quiet moment passed as Kratos searched for the answer within, the answer as to why he was going to speak after so many millennia.
And he found it. It was there, deep in the thoughts that bubbled up from the depths of his sealed away mind while he stared at the fire before him. Perhaps…I want them to know who you once were.
Not Lord Yggdrasil.
Not Mithos the Hero.
Not even Mithos Yggdrasil the Fallen Hero.
I want them to know Mithos, Summoner of Emblem, Bringer of Peace, the First Seraphim… and…
My pupil… and best friend…
Just as everyone began to fidget and wonder if he was going to speak again at all, Kratos’s voice began a fairy tale. “Once upon a time, there existed a giant tree that was the source of mana. A war, however, caused this tree to whither away, and a hero’s life was sacrificed in order to take its place. Grieving over the loss, the goddess disappeared unto the heavens.
“The goddess left the angels with this edict:
“’You must wake me, for if I should sleep, the world shall be destroyed.’
“The angels bore the Chosen One, who headed towards the tower that reached up unto the heavens.
“And that marked the beginning of the Regeneration of the World.”
“I recognize that verse from the scriptures of the Martel Church,” Colette said, “but we all know that the story was all a lie Yggdrasil made up.”
Lloyd nodded. “Yeah. It was all a rouse to mislead people into being willing to sacrifice Chosen and live in fear of the Desians.”
“Wow!” Raine exclaimed.
“Huh?” Lloyd blinked in surprise.
“You said the word ‘rouse’!” She clapped her hands together joyfully. “And in the right context! I’m so proud of you!”
“Professor, not this again,” the boy said with a wince, recalling when he had used the word ‘avaricious’.
Genis snickered, but said no more on the matter. He didn’t feel like being hit over the head by either his sister or his best friend.
Kratos looked up and smiled softly at the stars with one of his rarely seen gentle expressions. Those stars held so many happy memories for him; holding Anna… teaching Lloyd… talking with Yuan… but now was not the time to reminisce. His gaze returned to the campfire and those around it. He had an important story to tell and he intended his companions to hear of it. “Now… let me tell you the true tale.
“But remember… if you chose to retell this story to anyone… my only request in return for speaking of the past is that nothing be keep hidden. Because I wish to tell you everything there ever was: every love… every hate… every loss…” his voice trailed off on the last bit and his eyes became hallow as he stared at the fire, not even its light able to fill their emptiness.
Lloyd stared at those eyes. He’d seen Kratos look that way so many times. The only way he could describe it was the epitome of loneliness. It was the same look he had worn when he had told the boy the details of his mother’s death, and the young Eternal Swordsman realized then just how alone Kratos must feel in the world.
The man then began to tell his story.
“Once upon a time, the elves came to Symphonia from their world on Darris-Kharlan. When they came, our world was barren and life hard on its residents.
“Choosing to settle the world, they planted the Great Seed. After much adoration and loving care, it grew into the Great Kharlan Tree, and became the source of all Mana for the world.
“A Chosen One was selected every generation to be bound to the Tree and give it a direct link to the hearts of the people. In return for being bound to the life of the Tree, the Chosen One would receive the powers of the Angels, the blessings of the Tree, and the gift of Clarity.
“Time passed, and as the world flourished nations grew. The most powerful two were the Kingdom of Sylvarant, ruled by the humans, and the Empire of Tethe’alla, ruled by the elves. The other two greatest nations were the small Independent State of Darris, home of the half-elves, and the Nation Cruxis, governed by humans, elves, and dwarves. Below those were the coexisting realms of Balacruf, the Kingdom of Wind, and Triet, the Kingdom of Fire. The final great nation was one that none knew for certain if it really existed or not, fore it was the legendary hidden land of the Summon Spirits, the beings who awoke long before their time because of the germination of the Tree.”
“What is this, a history lesson?” Zelos asked, grimacing at the idea.
Genis poked the former Chosen hard in the ribs with one of the roasting sticks.
Kratos pressed on, seeming to be lost in the rhythm of the tale. “Sadly, these great nations did not stay at peace, and war began using the Magitechnology developed by the half-elves of Darris between Sylvarant and Tethe’alla.”
Raine jumped to her feet in surprise. “You mean it was half-elves that invented the legendary Magitechnology?”
The man’s eyes turned to her and he nodded. “Indeed.”
“Fascinating….” She sat back down when Genis tugged her sleeve.
“Over time the war escalated, and half-elves were oppressed and enslaved to use their skill to make more MysTek, the name for devices created using Magitechnology. Soon it wasn’t just slavery, but also the fate of becoming lab experiments to advance science and medicines and even the fate of being turned into living weapons awaited the half elves captured by either side. As time went by, the war stopped being called the Great War and then the Kharlan War. Then, when the records of the reason why the war started were lost, it was nicknamed the Ancient War.
“There was a side effect to MysTeks that few paid little head to. It was a known fact that MysTeks used huge amounts of mana as their power sources, but it was the way in which the mana was used. It didn’t just incorporate mana as its battery… MysTeks literally ate mana and left nothing behind to fill the void it created.
“Because of the war, the Kharlan Tree was ignored. No Chosen One was selected when the last was killed during the beginnings of the war. The Tree, forgotten in the hearts of all the people so filled with hate, began to whither in despair and sorrow.
“In desperation, the elves, having finally realized what was happening to the tree because of the war and the spirits of the people, began to search for a new Chosen One to accept The Angelus, the binding crystal that connected Kharlan’s heart to the Chosen so that it could see the hearts of the people, if only to save it and preserve their world.”
Lloyd touched his Exsphere. “Say… my Exsphere is called Angelus.”
“…Yes,” Kratos said with a nod. “Kavr named it after the holy crystal of the Kharlan Tree that was given to each Chosen upon their Ascension In Song as a part of the Tree.”
The young man rubbed his hand over the crystal on his left hand. “So Mom was kind of like the Chosen from a long time ago that weren’t twisted by Mithos’s ideals…”
For a moment, Kratos’s eyes softened, but looking away from the Eternal Swordsman, he continued his tale, choosing to study the flames of the camp fire rather than the faces of those around him. It was best he not let his mind linger on those precious few happy years of his too long life. “No Chosen could be found among the Elves. Thinking the blood of the Mana Lineage may have been ‘spoiled’, they began to search among the cooperative human cities and the last of the free half-elf villages.
“And so I shall now tell you… all of you… the true story of the Four Heroes and their companions as the first Journey of Regeneration began.
“This is the Requiem of Symphonia.”

Notes of Interest: Namco has confirmed the stories of Tales of Symphonia and Tales of Phantasia are connected, yet not officially stated in what way. According to Tales-Central, ToP takes place approximately 4,200-4,350 years after ToS.
One site stated that Cless/Cress Alvein/Albane (the hero of ToP) had identical kanji for his last name in his PSX carnation as Lloyd Irving does. Speculation states that in actuality he and Lloyd were meant to have identical last names and Alvein/Albane was the result of a variation on translation opinion. Personal speculation leads one to believe that Lloyd DID have decedents, and he DIDN’T take his father’s last name (Aurion).
MysTek is the term used in Tales of Phantasia: The Animation, to describe Magitechnology.