Chapter 52: Final Assessment

Sagax: “You look like you know why I am here, do you?”

It was some time after I got sucked in the black hole that I saw light coming in and the girl being pulled out. The same thing, after a while, happened to Sona. I was the only one left.

Kais: “I do.”

The only presence except that of the two of them I had felt in this place was something similar to Barry’s. In other words, it was a ghost’s presence. So when he appeared in front of me, it was pretty obvious he is that ghost. And it was also pretty obvious he is responsible for whatever happened to the two of them. And so I had realized that it was my turn next.

Sagax: “Then, do you also know who I am?”

That, before he appeared in front of me, I didn’t know. But after seeing his face, after seeing that hollow darkness where eyes should be, I realized.

Kais: “I do.”

He is Sagax, the person whose eyes could never be deceived.

Sagax: “I see. That makes things easy for me.”

Kais: “…”

I couldn’t read his expressions.  In all the time I had before Sagax showed himself to me, I had thought about why Abyss would have told me to let myself get sucked into this place. But I didn’t arrive on any answers that made sense. When he did show up, I thought maybe meeting him was the reason. But, what exactly did Abyss had in mind when he said that, I don’t really know. He hadn’t tried to say anything since then.

Sagax: “Now then, I have some questions for you before I let you leave this place.”

He specified that there were multiple questions, which could mean that he only had one question for those two. I should probably keep that in mind.

Kais: “Ask them then.”

Sagax: “Do you know what exactly this place is?”

I gave an honest answer.

Kais: “It feels like The Cage but at the same time, it seems like something is missing for it to be The Cage.”

He nodded.

Sagax: “Yes, this is a replica of a Cage belonging to Ozyllus and he is the one who made it.”

That made sense. If he had made this place, then of course he couldn’t have made it to be as infinite as a natural Cage is. That should probably be what seems missing to me. It looks endless from here but I am sure it has an end.

Sagax: “Do you know why he made it?”

I could place a rough bet, so I did.

Kais: “To trap you here.”

If Sagax soul was trapped in a place like this, he would be a ghost for a very, very long time whether he wanted to or not. Ozyllus and Abyss tried to prolong their existences over these past 10 centuries but there was no guarantee Sagax would do the same. So if Ozyllus wanted to make him live till today without him even wanting to, the only option he had to do that is to trap him in a place where time would be very slow. Of course, if he could replicate a real Cage, then time wouldn’t even be a bother. Anything inside will have infinity to live. But even this flawed replica can do the job for a thousand or so years. That was my theory.

Sagax: “If that really were the case, what would his reasoning be?”

Kais: “No idea.”

Sagax: “Huh?”

Kais: “I don’t know what his plan is, what his goal is or what his motives are. Without knowing any of those things, how could I know his reasoning?”

That is why I have to suspect him for any and everything, just to be safe.

Sagax: “I see.”

His tone of voice was indifferent, as if to hide his emotions.

Sagax: “You people really don’t know much, do you?”

Kais: “I am guessing you got the same kind of answers from Sona then.”

I don’t think he would include the girl in ‘you people’, so that must mean that Sona told him something similar.

Sagax: “Yeah, she did.”

He seemed indifferent even though his words seem to be implying that many emotions are hidden underneath that façade.

Sagax: “Well, anyway,”

He sighed as he said so.

Sagax: “do you know why the link to this place from the outside world is in the tomb?”

That probably plays into Ozyllus’ plans, or that’s what I would want to believe. But if coming here helps him, then why did Abyss want me to come here as well. I have drawn a blank slate on this one because of these two contradicting things.

Sagax: “I will take that silence as a no.”

He continued,

Sagax: “The main reason was probably because he wanted you to find out what truly transpired 1000 years ago.”

Kais: “…?”

Sagax: “From what Sona told me, the Psychic Library is a place whose location is unknown at present day.”

Kais: “Yeah, we have all heard of it. No one seems to know where it is though.”

The Library that is rumored to have the entire past from way before Ozyllus’ birth to after the war was over present in it in writing, The Psychic Library, is one of the biggest mysteries supernaturals have today. No one has been able to find it. Needless to say, a lot many have tried. Well, personally, I didn’t even knew of it until the dragon mentioned it and I then used a different opportunity to peak into Sona’s mind to understand what it is.

Sagax: “Well, if that’s the case then I think going to someone who knew where it was is the quickest way to find it.”

Kais: “That makes sense. And if you are that person, then I suppose he got what he wanted, for now at least.”

He nodded.

Sagax: “Those who were there at the time of that war are probably the most likely ones to know of it all.”

Kais: “And since the dragon has been here for so long, he is unlikely to know of the geographical changes that have happened over the years. Abyss and Ozyllus probably can’t expose themselves so easily.”

The reason for that being that they are both at each other’s throats and wouldn’t want to give the other any chance to attack because of some carelessness of their own.

Sagax: “And that only leaves me.”

Kais: “Yes, it makes sense.”

If I just assume that Ozyllus’ goal was as Sagax said, then things made sense. Also, I don’t think Abyss would be opposed to the idea of letting us (or me at least) know of the past either, which makes him wanting me to come here reasonable.

Sagax: “So, now that you know all of that, what do you intend to do?”

Kais: “Find the library.”

My goal is clear – stopping Ozyllus. And the first step towards that goal seems to be finding the Psychic Library.

Sagax: “I haven’t even told you anything about its location 1000 years ago.”

Kais: “But you will, right?”

I narrowed my eyes while staring at his face. Seeing that, Sagax sighed in exasperation.

Sagax: “Yeah, I will.”

He said in the same indifferent tone he had during the whole conversation.

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I am on the highest floor of the tomb. I am sitting right in front of Ozyllus’ coffin. And I am hearing footsteps. It’s not hard to guess whose footsteps they are.

Kais: “They are coming rather slowly.”

Maybe they are being cautious. Yeah, I’d be too.

Kais: “Though it seems like-”

The three people heading here don’t seem to be the ones who were with me earlier. Or rather, two of them are the same, one of them is different.

Kais: “Seems like the girl isn’t with them.”

It’s rather surprising that she is not but the person who has replaced her seems to be a man about my age.

Kais: “It’s probably Ethan then.”

I muttered to myself as I listen to their footsteps through my clairaudience. From their heartbeats, they seem to be a fair bit nervous. I guess that’s to be expected.

Kais: “Ethan, huh?”

I can see his heartbeat showing signs of nervousness too. I have never tried to read his emotions before, mainly because I had thought he is the type of person who doesn’t hide them at all. But, is that really true? Can someone be surrounded by people at least 10 times more powerful than him and really not feel afraid?

Kais: “Can that person even be called a human?”

I tried to look at Ethan in whatever way made it the most convenient for me. I didn’t had to think about how much courage he has, how resolved he is or anything of the like if I just assumed he is naturally like that.

Kais: “I was trying to run away again.”

I had made it a habit of running away as soon as things got bad. And this habit of mine has grown to an extreme by this point. Even subconsciously now, I would start running away from things like this.

Others probably weren’t like that. They probably realized that Ethan Kales is a human like any other and thus feels all the emotions anyone else does. They probably realized he is afraid and nervous but still has what it takes to stand up against them. Seeing that is probably the reason the dragon and Barry decided to stop attesting to their duties and try to go against Ozyllus. I, on other hand, kept looking away from it all.

Kais: “By this point, I won’t be surprised if they are both dead.”

I didn’t get a very good look but I could tell the two who Barry, the dragon and Ro had decided to stall for us to get here were very powerful. The man in black clothes in particular, was a monster as far as I could tell from his aura. He could even be as powerful as Ozyllus was, though I wouldn’t really know that for sure since I never saw Ozyllus when he was at his prime.

The only ones who may know how he matches up to Ozyllus are Ozyllus himself, Abyss, the dragon and Sagax.

*******************************

Sagax: “Well, if you can locate that place on the current map, you should be able to find the library.”

I nodded as I memorized everything he said about the location of the library 1000 years ago.

Sagax: “Now if that’s all, I suppose I need to send you back.”

Kais: “Before that,”

There’s something that I had wanted to ask him for a while and so I stopped him.

Kais: “There’s something I have been really curious about, and it had to do with this war.”

Sagax: “Go on.”

Kais: “The Alliance of the dragons, Vermillion and the Ghost Nation are up against Vampires. I don’t really see how vampires can possibly even stand a chance here.”

Sagax: “Hmm.”

I didn’t know if he knew what faction is doing what in the war but I assumed he would. From his reaction, it’s hard to tell but he probably didn’t know about this.

Sagax: “So you are wondering what the Vampire Kingdom may have up their sleeve.”

I nodded. If they are defeated before we are able to do anything, all of this would be pointless. On the other hand, it’s not like we can help the vampires and stop Ozyllus at the same time.

Sagax: “I don’t know.”

That took me by surprise. I thought he would know if there’s some ace the Vampire Kingdom has that may help them at this point.

Sagax: “They were quite a threat because of powerful leadership back then but I don’t think something like that would be enough this time. I don’t know this but I highly doubt that these 1000 years didn’t produce a single weapon that can remove the value of leadership skills.”

Well, there are hydrogen bombs. Be it normal humans or vampires, I don’t think they stand a chance in hell against that.

Sagax: “This is really something.”

He was pondering with his finger on his chin.

Sagax: “I have really no idea what the vampires plan would do. Add to that the fact that there is, according to what I have heard from Sona, someone more powerful than the dragon on the ghost’s sides.”

She probably meant that guy who was dressed completely in black.

Sagax: “Their chances seem slim to none.”

Seeing from how he was pondering about it all, I knew he really had no idea what the vampires are planning to do about this all. I mean, they wanted to bring me on their sides but no matter what they may say about me being more powerful than all psychics, I know there is just no way that I alone would have been enough to turn the tides in their favor.

*******************************

We kept thinking about it for a while but no answer came to mind. Just what exactly are the vampires going to do?

Kais: “I just can’t get that question off my head.”

Sona: “What question?”

She says as she steps in front of me while looking relaxed. Following her, Sneha and Ethan step in my line of sight too.

Kais: “Well, just wondering how the vampires are going to fight the three powerhouses by themselves.”

I turn to Ethan as I narrow my eyes to display my suspicion.

Kais: “Do you know anything?”

He sighs.

Ethan: “You are certainly less violent than I expected you to be.”

I guess after seeing me losing my temper on our second meeting, it is fair for him to think I’d be more aggressive.

Kais: “Let’s say I have learned to control myself better.”

Thought to be completely honest, I don’t feel any need to get aggressive.

Ethan: “So you say.”

He sighs with a look of disappointment on his face.

Kais: “Did you want me to pummel you? Are you a masochist?”

I say mockingly, the reply to which came with a straight-face,

Ethan: “Well, I could be one, I honestly have no idea.”

Kais: “You go around picking fights with people who can kill you in an instant. Furthermore, you aggravate them with a smug look on your face. I’d say you are a masochist.”

For some reason, our conversation derailed from the topic as soon as it began.

Sneha: “Whether he is a masochist or not is not really that important, is it?”

She looks at us with even more of a disappointed look.

Ethan: “Just what do you mean? I am in the middle of doing some very important self-introspection here.”

Even though he says that jokingly, his nervousness doesn’t go away. On seeing no one reacting to his words though, he sighs.

Ethan: “Fine, let’s get back to topic.”

He turns to me as he says,

Ethan: “You want to know what the vampires are planning to do about their huge disadvantage in this war.”

He says as if to remind himself.

Ethan: “Well, I don’t know everything but it seems like they have one hell of a strategist and are mostly dependent on him.”

A strategist, huh? That isn’t much different than having a great leader. What can that strategist do against the likes of a hydrogen bomb? And how exactly would he defeat that guy in black clothing?

Ethan: “I know what you are thinking and I have those doubts too but from the intelligence I have been able to gather on them, they seem to trust that guy to be able to take out all the enemies with his mind.”

Kais: “Just mind?”

It would make a bit more sense if that person if also really powerful in addition to being a good strategist. However, my answer comes as a sigh from Ethan.

Ethan: “He seems to have no supernatural abilities.”

Kais: “What!!!”

My reaction is shared by Sona and Sneha too. Of course it is. Who wouldn’t be surprised to hear that?

Ethan: “He doesn’t even seem to have a special ability like mine. He is, in every sense of way, a powerless human being.”

*******************************

It seemed like Sagax had given up on coming up with a possible way for Vampire Kingdom to fight back. And so,

Sagax: “After you are back there, your mission begins.”

I nodded.

Kais: “Yes, I am well aware.”

Sagax: “Before you go, tell me something.”

He said even though light rays had already started flooding and I was starting to get pulled by them.

Sagax: “The current holder of my eyes, my successor, is he on your side or not?”

He asked just as I was about to be completely pulled away.

*******************************

Ethan: “Before all of that though, there is something else I am curious about.”

He steps forward and stands right in front of me.

Ethan: “What are you going to do now?”

My answer to this question has been given to everyone but him, so I figured he’d ask sooner or later.

Ethan: “Will you keep sitting on your butt and let Ozyllus do whatever he is doing like you have been for these past 12 years?”

He is looking straight at me as he says with a resolved face and firm voice.

Ethan: “Or are you going to try to change things?”

Kais: “Hah!”

A chuckle escapes me causing him to tense his eyebrows in annoyance.

Kais: “Sorry about that.”

He is on our side alright. You can relax back there remembering that smile I gave you for an answer before being pulled out.

Kais: “Well,”

I take a deep sigh and say,

Kais: “I’m going to destroy him obviously.”

I am not exactly using Aura-Reading right now, but I feel like if I were, I would see smiles on both Ethan and Sona’s faces right now.

Ethan: “Well, if that’s the case,”

He says as he steps away and towards the lower floors.

Ethan: “You might need to tell that to those outside then.”

Kais: “Outside?”

Ethan: “I figure it has been long enough for those two from the Ghost Nation to have shown up outside the tomb.”

I see.  That makes sense.

Ethan: “I’d be going ahead.”

He says as he starts walking out of the tomb.

Ethan: “I have to give an answer to their question myself.”

He walks away with a smirk on his face. When we get out, things may get ugly. We may need to fight those two monsters when we refuse to join them. But, as I look at the back of the man whose eyes cannot be deceived, I feel like he is ready for it.

Sona: “Well?”

And if he is, then how can I sit back?

Kais: “Let’s get going then.”

I answer to the question she asked me with a smile, and stand up.

From here on out, I am going to need to fight many times and most people would probably be stronger than me. so, there’s no better warm-up than the those two, is there?

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