Gill returned safely from the spirit world.
Gill couldn’t quite catch Alhama’at’s last words as the world faded, yet something told him it had to do with their family.
“Ya know… I too could have ended up like him.” Gill considered what could have happened if he hadn’t friends to support him. It was as Reiya said, fate had changed, all due to her intervention.
Gill left the cave and returned to Laurite’s hermitage.
“You’re back I see. I trust you’ve come to know…?”
“I’m truly sorry, Gill.”
“There’s a lot I’d like to talk about. But I’ve wasted enough time, for now I’ve gotta go. You take care now, old man!”
“Later! I’ll come by next time to play with your disciples!”
Gill rode the winds and took to the skies. Gill gained further understanding of his powers from his battle with Alhama’at. But at what cost? How much time was lost in that cave? How fared the battles with the minions of the Witch? While Gill could tell the world certainly hadn’t ended, he felt the battles must have at least started by now.
As he thought that, a few surges of power could be felt in the distance. One of those surges appeared to peak before fading out completely. It seems a battle had reached its conclusion in that direction. As Gill was about to head in the direction, he sensed a presence a fair distance away. He used his spirit magic to look into the distance, only to find a familiar figure.
It was Ayu. However, the ambience around her made her feel like an entirely different person to Gill.
“Getting done in so easily… pathetic. Whatever… I’ve found what I was looking for. As I thought, my soul was consumed by that one… I’ll make them give it back… give it back, give it back, give it back!”
Ayu morphed into a massive dragon, one large enough to cast shadows over Gill from where he stood. The soulless girl changed into a soulless dragon. For she herself is ‘nothing’, there is ‘nothing’ she cannot become, as one with no soul has no defined form.
With a flap of her enormous wings, Ayu took flight and flew towards a tall land mass in the distance. Already predisposed, Gill continued onward to Sasaru Palace. There he found not only Reiya and Taegrus, but Kirik and Shaela as well.
“Hey, Gill! Something different about you? You’re beyond recognition,” Kirik looked Gill over head to toe. “Not bad.”
“Whoa~ Kirik’s right, you look like a changed man~” Shaela added in.
“Hey, that’s my line. I see you two returned stronger than ever,” Gill observed the change in his two friends. It was clear Kirik and Shaela brimmed with new powers, the Blood of the Dragon God as well as the Thunder Parasol, both powers Gill held in the visions of an alternate future. “Yeah... this is for best.”
“Oh nothing, uh… right! How’d fighting the Witch’s minions go? Went alright I take it?” Gill sheepishly smiled, trying to change the subject.
“Yes, It went fine. Not a problem at all. Sigh.” Reiya looked off into the distance while wearing a lonely expression. As the Witch’s minions were merely victims of the Time Spinning System itself, Reiya couldn’t bring herself to celebrate defeating them.
In contrast to Gill, Shaela spoke with a rare serious expression, “It’s quite terrible you know. Those girls too wished to save this world, yet only on the verge of death were they ever free from the curse. But they entrusted with us this world’s future, and gave us the Will of Hope, the Magic Stone of Truth, and the Seed of Rebirth in their last moments.”
“Oh...” Gill hadn’t expected such a serious reply, from Shaela of all people.
“Hey Gill, I heard from Reiya. You overcame your trial too, right? Your own self that is.” Kirik shot Gill a worried look.
Before Gill could respond, Taegrus appeared carrying a tower of fresh ingredients. “Alright everyone, before the final battle let’s have a meal! I’ve procured only the finest of ingredients for tonight.”
“C’mon, can’t you read the mood a lil’, Panda?” Gill smiled, secretly glad Taegrus had lifted the gloomy atmosphere.
Taegrus sneered. “Hoh, this coming from the boy who didn’t even help in today’s battle.”
It’s been a while since their usual bickering.
That night, Reiya stayed up to gaze at the stars.
Noticing her sitting alone, Gill decided to join her. “Reiya, mind if I sit here?”
“Do as you like.”
Gill sat next to Reiya and gazed up at the night sky.
“The moon’s beautiful tonight.” Gill commented.
“...In truth, something like a moon should not exist in this era. Then again, this world isn’t real either.”
“Well, to us residents of this world it is the real deal. And I’ll stand by that even if, say, we defeat the Witch and the world returns back to normal.”
“It’s too late for everything to return to as it was.”
“What do you mean?”
“Even if the Witch is defeated, this world will continue as is towards a new history. That is the rule of the Time Spinning System.”
It was at that moment, a theory surfaced in Gill’s mind. The inconsistencies Laurite had pointed out, Reiya’s presence ten years ago, as well as the fact they had defeated the Witch’s all-powerful minions, no, rather the fact they even considered having a chance at defeating the Witch herself. All those things combined pointed to one conclusion.
“Reiya, mind if I ask a question?”
“Didn’t I tell you earlier? Do as you like.”
“This world isn’t made by the Time Spinning Witch. Am I wrong?”