The Story of Chrono Trigger - Episode Two - Lavos Beckons

The Story of Chrono Trigger - Episode Two - Lavos Beckons

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The Story of Chrono Trigger - Episode Two - Lavos Beckons. As is usual for a classic role playing game, the world is in danger from a great threat. Unlike normal however, the threat is not in the present, but rather the future.

An intrepid group of heroes however discover that they have access to time travel, and while visiting the far flung future, they find it devastated. Accessing a supercomputer here, they find out that in the year 1999, nearly a millennia from their present, a creature known as Lavos emerged from underground and ravaged the world. The group meets up with some other brave individuals, and eventually learn that Magus, a powerful sorcerer, apparently summoned Lavos in 600 AD. After going through great lengths and fighting countless fiends, they face off against Magus and defeat him.

Unfortunately, rather than saving their future, they learn that Magus was merely awakening Lavos, meaning that the creature had already been here for who knows how long, and their future is still sealed, unless they find a way to defeat Lavos itself. When we last left off then, Crono, Marle, and Frog were being taken through a large time gate, while Magus chastised them for their interference. Crono wakes to a voice calling his name, which is revealed to be Marle, and he's back in his own house. Marle tells him he'll be late for work, and he needs to hold down a job as they can't keep asking her father for help. Unfortunately for Crono however, this is only a dream, and he actually wakes up in Ayla's tent, back in 65 million BC, along with Marle and Frog.

Apparently Ayla found them unconscious up in the mountains, and took them back here. She asks if the large frog is a present for her to eat, but Frog exclaims for her to perish the thought, and asks if she also found a pale-faced man wearing a cape. She did not, which presumably means that he woke up first and fled.

Ayla has bigger problems to face however, as she has escalated the war against the reptites, and in retaliation they burned down Laruba village and kidnapped Kino, her second in command. The elder of Laruba village is angry with Ayla, and has no wish to fight the reptites, which leads Ayla to calling him dead inside, as they must fight to live. She wants to borrow the Dactyls, flying mounts that she plans on using to travel to the Reptite castle up in the mountains, known as the Tyranno Lair. The elder believes this to be a suicide trip, but acquiesces and lends Ayla the dactyls. The group isn't about to just let Ayla go off on her own, despite the dangers involved for their future, and they head up to the Dactyl nest after her. Once again, Crono decides to take Robo along, since he worked well with Ayla before against the reptites.

The three fly off on the dactyls towards the imposing reptite castle, not noticing a distant red light in the sky. Arriving at the tyranno lair, the group is immediately assailed by a host of creatures, both reptites and other beasts that the reptites have under their control. Before long however, down in the prison area, they find Kino locked in a cell, seemingly intended to be a feast for the reptities. Ayla breaks Kino out, but when he insists on going with her to help beat the reptites, she refuses, because if she dies, Kino needs to lead the tribe.

Kino departs and the three continue through the castle, eventually encountering what initially seems to be Nizbel once again, but is actually Nizbel's more powerful twin. The fight plays out in a similar fashion to the first, with the same strategy being applied, and before long, Nizbel II is also defeated. In the throne room of the castle, they find Azala, who says that this will be the final confrontation between humans and reptites. Whoever wins will inherit the earth. Azala heads out the back door, and the group follows, finding her perched on top of a massive dinosaur.

Azala screeches at the red star in the sky to fall, asking it to stain the earth red. The group begins a battle against both Azala and the tyranno, with Azala displaying telekinetic powers, and the Tyranno displaying the ability to breathe fire. The three defeat the weaker of the two first, Azala, before facing off against the dinosaur. The fight is viscious, and it takes a great deal of effort to bring down the beast, but the group emerges victorious, ending the reptites reign of terror against humanity. Azala is perplexed by this turn of events, but tells them to let it be known that the reptites fought proudly to the bitter end. Suddenly there's a flash of red light, and Azala says that first, a great fiery stone will crash to the earth, its flames spreading to scorch every corner of the land.

Then the chill will begin to creep across the blackened plains, ushering in a long, cruel age of ice and snow, a fitting end to their age. This concept is familiar to Ayla, and she says that the the large stone is known among her people as Lavos, with La meaning Fire and Vos meaning big. Kino suddenly arrives with the dactyls, and although Ayla tries to get Azala to come with them, she refuses, claiming that this is the will of the earth.

As they depart, Azala bids them to take care of this world. As soon as they fly away, Lavos crash lands into the Tyranno Lair, devastating the area and leaving behind only a massive crater. Once the smoke clears, the group approaches the crater, with the assumption that Lavos is currently in a weakened state. They don't find Lavos however, as it must have immediately burrowed deep into the earth. Instead, they find a time gate, which Robo surmises are the result of the energy radiating from Lavos placing straings on the surrounding time-space.

Hoping that the gate will take them straight to Lavos to finish it off in this weakened state, the three jump into it. Unfortunately, it doesn't, with them instead emerging in an entirely different time period. Robo's time gyro reads it as 12,000 BC, much closer to the present but still in the distant past. It seems that Azala was right, and the world was gripped in an age of ice and snow for a very long time, as the group steps out of the cave into a cold and harsh landscape. While wandering however, they find something very curious, a futuristic looking structure with a platform in the center.

They proceed to step onto the platform, which lifts them into the sky, ending up on a lush floating island. Nearby, they enter into a building housing a number of individuals surrounded by shelves and shelves of books. One of the individuals, who's clearly not human, tells the group that this is the magic kingdom of zeal, where dreams can be made reality. The group recalls Spekkio's tale of a great kingdom from many years ago that wielded magic easily before bringing about their own downfall.

The kingdom is ruled by a Queen, also named Zeal, who encouraged the development of the kingdom's magical prowess after the death of the king. They come across a young boy with a cat, who only says, "The black winds howl", echoing the words of Magus, along with telling the group that one among them will shortly perish. This perplexes and unnerves them, but they continue on. The people of this kingdom seem highly content as they live out luxurious lives, many of them spending a great deal of time sleeping in order to study dreams further. The three continue on to another platform outside, which proceeds to transport them back down to the cold ground level of the world.

A short ways away, they take yet another platform back up, this time arriving on the large central floating island of Zeal. Here they enter the magic city of Kajar, where many of the people study magic to further advance the civilization. They learn that the young boy they encountered is apparently Janus, the Queen's son. Queen Zeal possesses a great deal of magical power, and her daughter, Schala, is also quite powerful, but so far Janus has yet to demonstrate even the slightest magical ability. The group also learns that those without magical abilities, called earthbound ones, are cast aside and left to live in the cold wasteland down below.

The group continues up the mountains on the floating island to reach the top, where the Queen's palace lies. Here, they learn of some other recent developments. It seems that a mysterious individual showed up not long ago, and quickly earned the Queen's trust by making a series of uncannily accurate predictions.

As part of this trust, the Queen removed her second in command, Lord Dalton, from overseeing the production of an ocean palace beneath the sea, placing the mysterious prophet in charge instead. The locals claim that this ocean palace will lead the kingdom to everlasting glory, although the specifics of how are not said other than that some powerful energy source rests beneath it. They also hear about something called the Mammon Machine, with one scholar stating that you can feel the glorious energy of Lavos surging from it. It seems clear now what the powerful energy source is, as Zeal is taking energy from Lavos to power her kingdom, which is certainly a recipe for disaster.

The three are allowed to observe the Mammon machine, and learn that it was constructed by three individuals, the Guru of Reason, Belthasar, the guru of Time, Gaspar, and the guru of life, Melchior. Melchior apparently opposed the Queen's plans in regards to Lavos, and disappeared shortly after, along with the other two gurus. They see Lady Schala proceed through a door in the back of the palace identical to the one they saw in 2300 AD, opening it by presenting her pendant in front of it. One of the attendants mentions that when Lady Schala communes with the mammon machine, her pendant glows with a strange light, and remarks that Marle's pendant looks identical to Schala's. There aren't many coincidences when dealing with time travel, so they take the pendant to the machine and sure enough, it also glows. It then allows them to open the same door, and proceed into the Queen's throne room.

Immediately upon entering, a man in a robe tells the Queen that these are the bringers of disaster of whom he spoke, at which point she commands Dalton to seize the group. He summons a large monster named Golem to deal with them, but it will take more than that to take down the heroes. Unfortunately, Dalton has a bit more than that, casting a spell that restricts their movements.

They're locked away in some sort of levitating prison cell, with the Queen promising to extensively torture them. While contained however, they are approached by Schala and Janus, with Schala intending to help them escape while Janus calls them idiots and thinks it isn't worth the trouble. Schala isn't worried about getting caught however, and hopes that the three might be able to rescue Melchior. She releases them from the prison and asks them to rescue Melchior who was sent to the Mountain of Woe for opposing Zeal's plan.

The mysterious prophet suddenly shows up however, and says that he'll have to end their lives here to stop their meddling. Schala of course begs him not to, but surprisingly Janus also tells him not to, at which point he relents. Instead, he has the three show him the gate that brought them here, and commands Schala to seal it shut after they go back through it.

Schala's left with no choice, and the group goes along with it, going back through the gate as Schala seals it. They end up back in the prehistoric past, wondering why the prophet agreed to let them live. Marle however remarks that she remembers seeing doors like the one schala's pendant opened in the future. They head back to the end of time and speak with the old man there, who says that they'll likely need some way to move through time more freely if they want to return to Zeal. He recalls someone working on a device that would help, the wings of time he called it, but he fears that the man's mind left him in the course of his long years of research.

Crono and Lucca enlist Robo to go with them back to the future, with their destination being an island to the south that they haven't explored yet. To get there, they travel through an underground sewer system crawling with some nasties, but nothing they can't handle. Emerging onto the other island, they enter another dome, finding a sealed door. Opening it with their pendant, they find a hallway with a series of notes left behind by none other than Balthasar, the guru of reason. He states that he was cast into this era by a great disaster, and here he learned that lavos fell to this planet ages ago, where he began feeding on the earth's energy. Lavos' form was revealed briefly when he was summoned by Magus in the year 600, but it wouldn't appear fully until 1999.

Afterwards, Lavos took to the nearby mountain, Death Peak, making it his throne, or his nest, as his spawn litter the mountainside. Belthasar spent his years here studying Lavos, but he recognized that his sanity was slipping away, and so before his mind was lost forever, he wrote these notes. He leaves behind his greatest invention, something that will let them take hold of the reins of time.

In the back room of the complex they find his wings of time, a sleek looking machine. The three climb into the machine, which they dub Epoch, and activate it, which causes it to generate an unprecedented amount of power. Epoch takes the crew to the end of time, where the old man is surprised to see it, and suggests they take it back to 12,000 BC.

Crono, Lucca, and Frog do just that, landing back on the island where they first arrived. It seems that the elevator up to Zeal is also sealed off to them, so instead they head into a nearby cave system, where they find a village of earthbound ones. They learn that many of the earthbound ones were taken away to build the ocean palace, and none of them have ever been seen again.

The village elder tells them that apparently Melchior, the guru of life, said that Janus has even more magical power in him than Schala, but he now hides and denies the power due to his mother's insanity. Connected to the caves is a massive chain leading upwards to a floating mountain, the mountain of woe. Recalling that Melchior is imprisoned there and is likely someone they want freed, the group makes their way up. The Mountain of Woe is a chilly, foggy place, of course filled with monsters, but the group eventually fights their way through to the peak.

Here, they find a large block of ice, presumably imprisoning Melchior, but unfortunately it's guarded by a massive creature that attacks them. The fight is difficult to say the least, in no small part due to the creature being able to regenerate parts of its body that they destroy. They persevere though, and slay the creature, freeing Melchior in the process.

Of course, the Melchior here is the same melchior they're already familiar with, although this one doesn't know them yet. They inform him of the current events going on in Zeal, and he surmises that Lavos is overtaking the queen's soul due to how much energy she's siphoning off of it. Their conversation is cut short however, as apparently killing the creature here broke the magic seal that was keeping the mountain afloat. They flee back to the earthbound village as the mountain crashes into the ocean.

Melchior tells them that they need to put a stop to the mammon machine before it wakes Lavos. Suddenly Schala and Janus arrive, informing them that the Ocean Palace has been completed. Fortunately, Zeal needs Schala to activate the mammon machine, and she refuses to do so again. Unfortunately however, Dalton arrives and forces Schala to come to the ocean palace with him. As the group draws their weapons to deal with him, he holds Schala hostage, stating that he doesn't fear the queen and will kill Schala if necessary. Although that's likely not true, the group stands down, and prepares to storm the ocean palace to put an end to things.

Melchior hands them a red knife, made from the same red stone as the mammon machine, capable of destroying the machine for good. Thanks to Schala, the elevators back to Zeal are working for them again, and they make their way back to the palace. They find Dalton sitting on the throne, complaining about being ordered to guard this place while the prophet is allowed to go down to the ocean palace. The three battle Dalton, who proves to have a bit more bark than bite.

He creates a portal down the Ocean Palace and flees, prompting the group to follow straight after him. They begin moving through the dangerous Ocean Palace while Schala is forced to activate the mammon machine, now close enough to Lavos to wake the slumbering beast. Masa and Mune communicate with them as they continue, telling them that the Mammon machine, Schala's pendant, and the red knife from Melchior are all made of dreamstone.

As they continue through the relentless gauntlet, the dark energy from the mammon machine begins affecting Schala, but Zeal maniacally demands that she continue so that they can achieve immortality. They eventually make it near the mammon machine room, only to be stopped again by Dalton, who summons twin Golem sisters to battle the group. What could have been a nightmarish fight is made laughably simple for the group thanks to a simple piece of technology developed by Lucca that puts the two to sleep, allowing the group to battle one of them at a time.

Before Dalton can reveal his ace in the hole however, he realizes that Lavos is awakening, and decides to flee once again, stating that all of his hard work will be in vain if he dies before attaining immortality. The three proceed into the mammon machine room, finding it running out of control as Schala is no longer able to maintain it. Crono rushes up and throws the red knife into the machine, with the machine's energy transforming the knife into a sword, the masamune. The masamune successfully disables the mammon machine, but sadly it's too late, as Lavos has already awoken. The three suddenly find themselves staring down the apocalyptic monster, and they draw their weapons. Despite their bravery, it's no use, and Lavos rains down destruction upon them.

The mysterious prophet then steps up, exclaiming how long he's waited for this, and casts off his robe, revealing himself to be Magus. Magus states that he swore long ago that he'd destroy Lavos, no matter the price, and he prepares to battle the creature alone. He's interrupted by Zeal, who says that he'll be nothing more than grazings for the great Lavos.

She proceeds to climb onto Lavos' shell as Lavos drains away Magus' magical energy. Magus shrugs off the effect and charges at Lavos, striking it directly, to no effect. He's cast aside, as Lavos begins to draw in the entire group to consume them. Despite being beaten down, Crono manages to stand and grab his sword.

He faces Lavos directly as the great monster fires a beam of energy towards him. What exactly happens next is not entirely clear, but Crono proceeds to be utterly obliterated in the process, and somehow his sacrifice allows the others to flee while Lavos heads to the surface. Afterwards, Magus laments that he lacked the power to defeat Lavos, while Marle and Lucca cry that Crono is gone.

Schala uses the last of her power to send Marle, Lucca, and Magus back to the surface, where Lavos is busy devastating the kingdom of zeal, sending the floating islands careening into the ocean. A massive tidal wave forms, wiping out the earthbound ones' village. Marle and Lucca wake up in a tent, where they are greeted by an elderly earthbound one. The man tells them that they found no one else with them, but the Epoch washed up nearby safe and sound, as if drawn to them. Left with nothing else to do but grieve for Crono and move on, Marle, Lucca, and Ayla wander through the ramshackle village the survivors have set up. There are enlightened ones here that managed to survive the destruction of zeal, but now there is no distinction between the two groups.

While chatting, they are interrupted by the sudden arrival of Dalton, who seems to have fled the destruction entirely and managed to retain some of his forces. He declares that the kingdom of Zeal shall henceforth be known as the kingdom of Dalton, and he'll be taking the Epoch to make it his personal chariot. Dalton manages to incapacitate the three before they can even draw their weapons, and they wake up in a small locked room together with all of their items and equipment taken from them. Fortunately, Ayla doesn't require any fancy weapons to beat up some villains, so she's prepared to break out. Their cell does feature a ladder that leads up to a balcony, revealing that they are in fact flying through the air on the Blackbird, the massive flying fortress designed by Balthasar for Zeal. Although this makes their escape a little trickier, they soldier on, discovering an entrance to some air vents in their cell.

They begin moving through the ship, with Ayla able to handily knock out some of Dalton's soldiers as they recover the others items and equipment scattered about. They manage to spy on Dalton and some engineers working on the Epoch, with Dalton exclaiming that this will be his royal airthrone. The three manage to make it out onto one of the ship's wings, where they are ambushed by yet another Golem under Dalton's control, the Golem Overlord. Despite it's menacing appearance and ominous countdown, the overlord ends up being completely useless in the fight due to its crippling fear of heights. It ends up fleeing, much to the group's relief. That relief is shortlived however, as they soon spot Dalton soaring through the skies nearby on the Epoch, newly equipped with some sleek wings.

Dalton proclaims that this ship is now the Aero-Dalton Imperial, and begins firing some laser cannons at the three. In an impressive show of dexterity, the three women leap onto the aero-dalton imperial and begin pummeling dalton. Dalton, now overwhelmed, attempts to summon Golem Overlord, but rather than the monster appearing, Dalton is sucked into the vortex and disappears, relinquishing control of the epoch.

After some minor hiccups, they figure out how to pilot the ship, and proceed to blast the blackbird, sending it crashing into the sea, much to the earthbound one's delight. Lucca is a little saddened that Dalton upgraded the ship, as she had planned on doing it herself, but regardless, they now have access to a flying time machine. Before using it to depart this time period, they spot a familiar looking man standing on the edge of a precipice on the far side of the island. Frog, Marle, and Lucca approach Magus, who tells them that he once lived in the kingdom of zeal, but he was a different person then. He reveals what happened to Zeal and the Ocean Palace in the original timeline, before Crono and the group changed things and created this new timeline. When Zeal and Schala activated the mammon machine in the ocean palace and awoke Lavos, a few gates formed, although the reason for this is not entirely clear.

The three gurus were all whisked away to different time periods, along with Janus, who wandered into the chamber at the worst possible time. Balthasar ended up in 2300 AD, Melchior in 1000 AD, and Gaspar at the end of time, meaning that, as suspected, he's the old man that's been advising them. Janus however ended up in 600 AD, where he's immediately found by Ozzie and some fiends. Janus is Magus, and he's made it his life goal ever since then to slay Lavos, which is why he was so angry that they interfered when he summoned it.

He finds it ironic that another time gate would appear and bring him back to this age, where he used his knowledge of the past to convince the queen that he was a prophet. Although he was able to face down Lavos as he always imagined he would, he couldn't imagine the power of the creature. As he puts it, before Lavos, all are as leaves cast to the bitter winds that howl about Death's black wings.

He tells them that if they stay on their course, their fate will be the same as Crono's, who he remarks was foolish and weak. At this, Frog draws his sword and tells Magus to stay his tongue. Magus is all too prepared to face off with Frog, but surprisingly, Frog sheathes his sword. He states that killing Magus will not restore either Crono or Cyrus' life.

The three prepare to depart, but Magus stops them, saying that he would like to accompany them. He doesn't exactly state his reasons for doing so, other than wishing to see Lavos defeated as much as they do, but he tells them that Gaspar, the guru of time, knows of a way to restore those streams of time that have been diverted from their proper courses. The enemy of their enemy is their friend, and Magus is clearly no slouch in battle, so they welcome him aboard, with a wary eye. As they climb onto the epoch, they see a massive structure rise out of the ocean. It's the ocean palace, but now it floats eerily in the sky as a foreboding black omen. Finding a way to bring back Crono takes priority however, and the group returns to the end of time, where the old man asks after Crono.

He's saddened by the news, but says that he only wishes that he could do more to help. Marle tells him that they're looking for the guru of time, as they heard that he knows of a way to bring Crono back. He says that they are not the first to wish to break death's hold over someone they hold dear, nor will they be the last. He gives them an egg, specifically a time egg, what he calls the Chrono Trigger. He tells them that the one who crafted their wings of time can tell them how to hatch it, but it may not necessarily hatch the results they desire. The Chrono Trigger represents potential, but as long as they keep Crono in their hearts and pursue what they seek, the results should follow, although he can't make any guarantees.

Magus realizes at this point that this is Gaspar, the guru of time, to which Gaspar just laughs and says that that's what he was called long, long ago. Lucca, Marle, and Robo head back to 2300 AD and go back into Balthasar's lab, where they speak with a construct containing Belthasar's consciousness. He tells them that Death Peak harbors a power capable of restoring the slain to life. It's not easily invoked, as the need must be great and the person's existence must be of the utmost importance. To carry this out, they'll need a double, a doll identical to that person in every detail.

He suggests seeking out the magician Norstein Bekkler, who would be capable of whipping up a double in the wink of an eye, and tends to hang out around festivals. Bekkler must be a curious individual indeed if Belthasar knows of him, since he went from 12,000 BC to 2300 AD. The group only knows of one big festival going on, and that's the millennial fair in 1000 AD.

They travel back there hoping for the best. While traveling, they see the floating ocean palace in both 2300 AD and 1000 AD, meaning that it's simply been floating there for thousands and thousands of years, ominously waiting for them to take it on. First things first however, and sure enough, they do end up finding Bekkler at the fair, who's set up in his own large tent. Bekkler is indeed quite curious, appearing only as a floating clown mask and hands, but says that he is willing to give them a doll of Crono, who he is somehow familiar with, as long as they participate in a game. The game ends up being a sort of mirroring game where Lucca has to match the movements of a doppelganger of Crono.

It seems like a rather morbid activity, but Lucca succeeds and Bekkler says that he'll send the doll over to Crono's house. While there, the group bumps into Crono's mother, who asks after him. Lucca lies and says that he's fine, and his mother simply says that she hopes that he's behaving himself.

With the doll in hand, they return to Belthasar, who tells them that he has implanted one last memory in this construct's memory banks, one that will assist them as they traverse Death's Peak. With everything prepared, the three begin ascending the nearby death peak, an icy mountain of wind and despair. Belthasar's last program does prove useful, as without it, the three wouldn't be able to even make the initial ascent. Continuing up the mountain, they eventually come across a spikey monster, one that resembles Lavos and must clearly be one of it's spawn.

It turns out to be quite durable and deadly, but thankfully only contains a fraction of Lavos' power. Aside from that, Death Peak certainly lives up to its name, as the group battles various monsters, harsh winds, and more of lavos' spawn before finally reaching the peak. Marle takes the chrono trigger and begins to pray, asking for strength from those who fear the night and stand against the darkness. Schala's pendant then begins to glow, and the chrono trigger rises up into the air before shattering. With no chrono in sight, Marle begins to cry out in anguish at their failure.

Suddenly a solar eclipse occurs, and the three find themselves standing back in front of Lavos, in a moment frozen in time. Realizing that they need to exchange the doll of Crono with the real Crono before he sacrifices himself, they make the swap, and then find themselves back on the summit of death peak, but this time with Crono alive and well. Marle embraces him and tells him to never leave them like that again. Back at the End of Time, Gaspar is glad to see Crono alive again, and says that there are multiple ways for them to battle Lavos if that's truly their ultimate goal.

There's a bucket here at the end of time that for some reason is connected with Lavos and will take them to it, or they could simply take the Epoch to 1999 AD. There's also the Black Omen to deal with, the ocean palace floating in the sky where Zeal still hopes to resummon Lavos. Gaspar mentions that he has had vague glimpses of events, people, and places that will empower them and give them a better chance of defeating Lavos.

A forest brought back to life by the sheer determination of a woman in the middle ages, the fortress of one of Magus' three former generals in the middle ages, a task to be done in the future, in a birthplace of machines, a prehistoric stone that will shine with the light of all the ages of the world, the restless spirit of a proud knight, slain by Magus in the middle ages, and lingering even in the present, and an object of legend in the middle ages that sparkles like a rainbow. He tells the group to borrow the might of all of these lives throughout the ages, and let their strength become their own, for only then can they hope to defeat Lavos. It sounds like the group has their work cut out for them if they want to truly be prepared for the final conflict. They decide to start with the prehistoric stone that Gaspar mentioned, as they recall a number of people in Zeal that remarked on a magical sun stone that held the power of the sun and was the source of Zeal's power before they moved on to utilizing Lavos' energy. The stone was held in a temple devoted to it, but unfortunately it sunk to the bottom of the ocean along with the rest of Zeal when Lavos attacked.

The bottom of the ocean is a bit out of their reach, but thankfully, it seems to have risen out of the water for some reason by the year 2300 AD. Crono, Lucca, and Marle enter the temple, where they are quickly attacked by a floating eye wreathed in flames. The eye seems to be completely invulnerable to damage, and instead it seems to be testing the group to see if they're worthy of the stone. After playing it's dangerous little game and succeeding, the eye transforms into a round stone. Lucca surmises that this is the sun stone, but it's been drained of all of its energy. It could likely be recharged with sunlight, but it would take aeons.

Again, time travel comes in handy, and the group takes the stone back to 65,000,000 BC, where they find a curious cave with a direct beam of sunlight into its interior. Marle remarks that this must be the sun's favorite place, and they leave the stone here. Minutes later, they're back in 2300 AD, where the cave still sits, and they head inside. Unfortunately, the stone is nowhere to be seen, meaning that someone must have taken it at some point. They head back to 600 AD, but the stone's still there, so they next travel to 1000 AD, and sure enough, the stone's gone.

Hoping that whoever took it is still around, they roam the kingdom of guardia looking for clues. As it turns out, they don't need many hints, as the house belonging to the mayor of Porre is giving off a vibrant light. The mayor however claims that he's never heard of any shining stone, while his family remarks on how greedy and selfish he is. Rather than simply pummeling the man and taking back what's theirs so that they can save the planet, they decide to try a different approach. They go back to 600 AD and meet with the man's ancestors, with one woman mentioning how much she'd like to have some spiced jerky to make a meal out of.

The group manages to obtain some, for a rather high price, and take it back to the woman. She's willing to pay an equally high price for the jerky, but the group decides to give it to her for free, shocking the woman with their generosity. She tells them that she'll be teaching her children from their example. Flashing back to 1000 AD, they speak with the mayor again, who says that a passing young traveler left the stone here and they are more than welcome to take it. The man's family now exclaims about how much like they like him, with his wife commenting that she wishes he was just a bit less generous.

Sun stone back in hand and a good deed done, they return it to the cave and travel to 2300 AD. The stone now shines brilliantly, and Lucca says that with energy like this, she should be able to make a really powerful weapon. Back at the lab in her home, she converts the energy of the sun stone into a more manageable form and vacuum packs it into a cartridge. With that done, she declares her new weapon to be the Wondershot, remarking that sometimes she amazes herself. Her father used some of the stone's energy to make a pair of sunglasses, which are both stylish and powerful.

With shades in hand, it's time to move on, and the group next decides to tackle the reckless spirit of a knight slain my Magus. Crono and Frog decide to check it out, and they're joined by Magus, who is seemingly in the process of reforming himself. The three head to the middle ages, where they end up checking out a large area of ruins north of the village of Choras, on the southeastern continent. The ruins prove to be inhabited by a multitude of hostile spirits, and navigation becomes an issue due to numerous crumbling pits scattered about the structure. The group heads back to Choras and speaks with a carpenter to see about getting the ruins patched up to allow them to progress, but the carpenter complains that he can't work because someone took his tools. Rather than bother to try and track down his tools, the group simply hops into their time machine and heads to 1000 AD, where they speak with another carpenter and end up borrowing his tools.

Back in the middle ages, the carpenter and his team take the borrowed tools and begin patching up the ruins. The three have to continually go ahead of the group to clear out the spirits before they can continue their work, but eventually it's fixed up enough for the group to make it to the ruin's back end. Here, they find a single tombstone, and it turns out to belong to Cyrus, Frog's friend that was killed while facing down Magus. Frog stands in front of the grave and says that he has returned, and he will fulfill that oath he swore so long ago, and his final promise to him as well. He holds up the masamune, and suddenly Cyrus' spirit appears, thanking Frog for making the journey here.

He tells Frog that he was never as fine a warrior as Frog is now, and as he died, his heart burned with the thoughts of all he'd left unfinished, and all he left behind. Now that he sees how Frog's skills have progressed however, he can now rest peacefully, knowing that all will be made right by his hands. He begins to fade away, and with his parting words he tells Frog to look after Queen Leene and bids him farewell.

Afterwards, the masamune separates into Masa and Mune, and they say that all of frog's emotional baggage was weighing him down, since the hero's strength is strength of will. Now that he's stopped dwelling on the past, the masamune can now access his true strength. Before departing, Frog tells Cyrus that he goes now to follow in his footsteps, and see done all that he had wished.

Magus remains silent throughout the event, which is perhaps for the best considering the past. Speaking of Magus' past, since they're already in the middle ages, the group decides to head next to a new fortress that has been set up since magus' disappearance. The fort belongs to one of his former generals, Ozzie, who now commands the legions of fiends that war with the humans. Arriving at the fort, Ozzie is shocked to see his former leader, but then lashes out at him in anger, claiming that he deserted his fellow fiends to lick the boots of filthy humans.

Ozzie seems more hurt than angry though, confused as to why Magus would become a traitor to the fiends, which seems to imply that Magus never told him much about his youth. The group pursues Ozzie further into the fort, where Flea appears as well. Flea says that a human-loving traitor like Magus deserves to be punished, and a short battle ensues. It's clear that Flea is holding back though, as he runs farther into the fort.

The group then bumps into Slash, who is also willing to attack his former lord. Similarly though, the battle ends quickly and the group continues on. The real battle however occurs when Ozzie, Flea, and Slash surround the three and attack all together.

This is certainly the most capable these three generals have ever been in a fight, but it's still not quite enough to best Crono, Frog, and Magus. Slash and Flea are defeated, but Ozzie still manages to escape the battle alive and runs away yet again. Cornered, he pleas to Magus that they fought side by side before, and Magus had said that he wanted to create a world for fiends. Magus coldly replies that he sought power, nothing more. He asks if the howling of those bitter winds has escaped Ozzie's ears, and says that the end draws nigh. Ozzie falls back on his old technique of forming a protective barrier around himself, near some large switches on the wall.

When the group hits one of the switches, a pit opens up beneath them instead, with Ozzie gloating that he got them. Sadly for him though, the fall is brief, and the group heads right back up to him again. While exclaiming that they'll never defeat him however, a cat wanders in and hits another switch, opening a pit beneath Ozzie.

Presumably this sends him somewhere far worse, as the group considers the matter closed. Magus says that the past is gone, and that it was but a fleeting dream. With the war between fiends and humans well and truly over, the group returns to 1000 AD, and heads over to the village of Medina, which is inhabited by fiends. In contrast to their past behavior, the fiends here are now completely friendly and jovial around humans, so much so that a ferry is now being constructed to allow easy travel between Medina and Truce. Recalling Gaspar mentioning a forest being brought back to life by a woman in the middle ages, the group heads back to 600 AD and roams around, stumbling upon a massive sinkhole in the desert north of Porre. In the home nearby, a woman named Fiona mentions that anything she tries to plant dies before it has a chance to grow.

She blames it on the monsters lurking underneath the desert nearby. She is in possession of a young tree that has been cultivated throughout the ages and is mysteriously resilient, that she believes could restore this desert to a verdant land. That tree in fact hails all the way back to the time of Zeal, when a woman approached the group and asked them about a sapling that she was given by Melchior.

The sapling apparently has the power to restore the earth, and although the queen ordered her to burn it, the group convinced her to grow it in secret, where it eventually was passed down to her descendant, Fiona. Crono, Marle, and Robo decide to trek down into the sinkhole to clear the area of monsters. The monsters down there prove to be a hardy bunch, but eventually they stumble upon the real cause of the problem, a massive skeletal creature similar to Zombor, whom they fought back on the bridge. Thankfully their past experience comes in handy, and they employ similar techniques to deal with this one.

With the problem solved, they return to Fiona, who is glad to begin planting trees once again. She fears however that it will takes ages to plant enough trees to reforest the land, and she wishes that there was someone who could work on the forest for centuries in order to turn the area green again. Robo immediately volunteers for the task, as he could remain here and work far longer than a human could, and the group can simply come pick him up in the future. The group agrees, and Robo begins working straight away, while the others hop back onto the Epoch and jump forward to 1000 AD.

When they arrive, they find the area transformed, with much of the island covered in forests. It seems that Robo was able bring Fiona's dream to life after all. Where her home used to be there is now a grand shrine, inside of which they find Robo resting on a pedestal, covered in rust. They reactivate him, and he is glad to see them, mentioning that for them only a few moments may have passed, but for him it's been four hundred years.

His efforts were worthwhile however, with the forest restored. To celebrate the reunion, the group decides to camp out in the forest together. While Lucca works on cleaning and repairing him, Robo says that he's realized something over the last few hundred years. He believes that they are incorrect in their assumption that Lavos was responsible for creating the time gates.

He has come to believe that another entity wished for them to witness certain events, or perhaps it wished to see these events for itself, almost as if it were reflecting on the days of its past. Frog says that before a man dies, he is made to bear witness a second time to those memories engraved most deeply upon his heart. There may be fond memories among them, but often as not, the ones which grieve us are the most profound.

Robo goes on to say that knowing the end is approaching likely reactivates dormant feelings of regret, and desire to return to moments in the past. Marle wonders if that same thing will happen to them when their time comes, and asks Lucca if there's a point in time she'd like to return to. Lucca hesitates, but says no, not really. Marle apologizes for asking, but Lucca says that it's okay, it's just something she doesn't like to think about too much. Back to the other topic, Frog says that even if Lavos did not open the gates, his fate is clearly bound to that of the one who did, as Lavos has played a role in every age they've visited.

Magus asks Robo who he thinks this entity is, but Robo doesn't know, only suspecting that it is an entity greater than any of them. Perhaps they won't know until their journey comes to an end. After the groups fall asleep by the fire, Lucca wakes up alone, and hears a sound coming from nearby. Upon investigating, she finds a gate, which she decides to enter by herself. The gate exits out into Lucca's home, in the year 990 AD. She finds a diary entry written by her younger self, in which she shrugs off any interest in science, stating that girl's don't need to know about that stuff.

Downstairs, she finds a note written by her father, stating that the password to shut off his device is the name of his one true love. In the main room, she finds her younger self, along with her mother, and she realizes that this is the day of her mother's accident. One of Taban's machines is running, and Lucca's mother decides to clean it when her skirt suddenly gets caught in the mechanisms. In the past, Lucca desperately tried to turn off the machine, but didn't know the password, resulting in the machine crippling her mother.

Lucca is given a second chance here however, and enters in the password, Lara, the name of her mother. The machine shuts down, and history has been altered. Upstairs, Lucca spends some time crying over what just happened before returning through the gate. She is greeted by Robo, who seems to know where she went, and says that that was always weighing on her mind because she is always thinking of others. He then gifts her a piece of amber he created by taking some sap from the trees here and putting it under a great deal of pressure for the last four hundred years.

The group heads over to Lucca's house where they find her mother walking again, mentioning what a beautiful day it is and how she's planning on going for a walk. It seems some good has come from this journey after all. With that done, and Robo reunited with the group, they decide to head back to the future to check out the birthplace of machines mentioned by Gaspar.

On a small remote island, they find another factory, known as Geno Dome. Upon entry, Robo says that he is familiar with this place, and he'll take the lead. After accessing a terminal however, a voice asks who enters their sanctum unbidden, and then recognizes Robo, welcoming him home as R-667Y. They also refer to him as Prometheus, and says that he and the fleshlings behind him are welcome to come in, before opening the front door. After passing through however, they're placed on a large conveyor belt, while the voice says that they'll see what capabilities the humans possess.

What ensues is a veritable gauntlet of robotic foes, but the group continues to prevail. While progressing through the facility, the voice continues to taunt them. It says that three hundred years ago, the lavos disaster brought drastic and devastating change to this planet. At its current rate of decline, humanity is doomed, and the disease they call despair is already consuming them from within.

After progressing further in, they eventually come across another set of conveyor belts, this one moving unconscious humans into a machine that seems to kill them and convert them into some other type of material. It becomes apparent then that Geno is really short genocide, as the robots here have completely turned against humanity and are slaughtering the ones that remain. The group tries to shut down the system, but Robo states that there's too many layers of protection, and they'll have to disable the mother brain mainframe first. Determined to do exactly that, the three continue through the facility, battling killer robots and overcoming various security measures, until they are stopped by another robot similar in appearance to Robo, who greets him as Prometheus. Robo recognizes her as Atropos, a reference to one of the three fates of Greek Mythology, the goddesses who presided over mortals fates and ultimately cut off their threads of life.

Atropos says that there's no more need for him to keep pretending that he's on the human's side. She explains that Prometheus was given a special task among their kind, to live among humans and study them as a species. She bids him to join her in eliminating these humans, and then they can go see mother. Robo however refuses to let her harm them, and so since she believes him to be damaged through human tampering, she'll have to destroy them by herself and then fix Robo.

Robo however says that Atropos is not the same robot he knew before, and she says that she has been upgraded by Mother to make her more capable in eliminating humans. Robo tells Crono and Lucca to stand aside, as he faces down Atropos alone. Fortunately, Robo has also grown stronger in his time with the others, and though Atropos is a capable opponent, he emerges victorious. The fight seemed to have knocked something loose in Atropos, as she now seems to recognize Robo for the first time, and asks what happened to her.

Her old memories, which were supposed to have been wiped out by mother, have been restored, but unfortunately her core systems are now failing due to damage. Before failing completely, she gifts Robo her computerized ribbon, and tells him goodbye. All that remains now is to face off the reason for all of this genocide, the mother brain.

Upon approach to her chamber, she tells the group that one day, lavos' children will return to the stars to seek out new planets and new sources of sustenance. When that day comes, this planet will have its chance to heal, so long as there are no humans to interfere. The robots will establish a new world order, a unified nation of steel, and pure logic. A utopia, free of sadness and suffering. Evolution has chosen them to be the seeds of the next generation.

Obviously, the three aren't going to accept that, so they enter into her chamber, where a number of panels emit a holographic image of a female form into the center of the room. Mother Brain introduces herself, and then tells Robo that she'll restore his logic and reset his circuitry, then they can dispose of these filthy humans together. Robo however says that he cannot permit her to do that, as his memories are too valuable to be deallocated, and so are his friends. Mother Brain asks if he'll betray her and all of robotkind in order to side with the humans, to which Robo responds that he has learned a great deal from humans, and he wants to see the future that they bring about. This only causes mother brain to break out in laughter, saying that there is no future for the humans.

Of course, a fight begins, and despite the group quickly destroying the three displays projecting the hologram, mother brain herself remains, suggesting it to possibly be some sort of hardlight. Regardless, the group continues to attack the manifestation itself, throwing everything they've got at it. Eventually, it dissipates, and Robo uses the nearby terminal to completely disable the entire facility.

With that, the potential reign of robots in the future is put to a close. That finished, the group decides to return to the present, with Marle finally deciding to return back to her home, Guardia castle. Unfortunately, upon arrival, she immediately gets into a shouting match with her father, after he insults the others in the group. He says that she's a daughter of the line of Guardia and consorting with their like is a disgrace to this family's name. Marle says that this only confirms what she suspected, that he cares more about the kingdom than he ever did about her or her mother.

She then accuses him of killing her mother, which outrages him, resulting in him banishing her from the castle and disowning her. Sensing that it's best not to stick around the castle for long, the group departs, recalling something that a fellow adventurer asked them to do back in the middle-ages. The adventurer, Toma, had been in pursuit of a legendary fossil known as the rainbow shell, supposedly capable of being forged into some incredibly powerful pieces of equipment. Despite being close to finding it, he confided in Crono that he can't shake the feeling that things will go sour, and his luck may finally run out. He had given Crono a bottle of alcohol, and asked him to pour it over his gravestone if anything bad should befall him.

Toma didn't end up being killed in any sort of horrible expedition, but the group decides to pour the spirits out anyway over his gravestone in 1000 AD. Upon doing so, Toma's spirit appears, which would normally be pretty surprising, but the group is accustomed to odd occurrences by this point. Toma's spirit immediately reveals that he managed to actually find the rainbow shell, on an island nearby called the Giant's Claw.

There are droves of monsters in the caves there however, and he couldn't manage to retrieve the shell himself. With that, he departs, and the group takes the epoch back to 600 AD and over to the island to being exploring its caves. Shortly after entering the caves however, they stumble into a familiar looking structure, the reptite lair. Rather than being completely destroyed when Lavos fell, parts of it were merely pushed underground, and managed to stick around for millions of years. Crono, Marle, and Frog progress through the area, passing through sections of both castle and cave, battling prehistoric monsters that have somehow remained isolated to this island all this time.

Eventually they run into a familiar looking foe, the tyranno, that is somehow still alive despite being fossilized. The tyranno puts up even more of a fight than it did 65 million years ago, but once again, the group prevails. Behind the tyranno, they find the fabled Rainbow Shell, shimmering in the light. It proves to be far too heavy for the three of them to lift, so they decide to enlist the help of Guardia, whom the group still has good relations with in this time period. King Guardia agrees to help bring the rainbow shell to his castle and safeguard it, as they'll need Melchior's help in the present time to forge it into equipment for them.

The group returns to the present, where they now have to deal with the current King Guardia in order to retrieve the shell. Surprisingly though, upon entry to the castle, they're informed that the interior of the castle has been sealed off by order of the chancellor until the trial is over. Further questioning reveals that the trial is centered on King Guardia himself, accused of selling off a royal heirloom, none other than the rainbow shell. The group barges into the courtroom, where the chancellor is currently questioning the king.

He's holding an ancestral will, written by the past King Guardia, in which he states that the rainbow shell is to be shown off at the millennial fair in the year 1000. The current king has no idea what the chancellor is talking about however, stating that there are no ancient royal heirlooms here. The chancellor in turn claims that the king denies the shell's existence because he no longer owns it, instead selling it off for no reason other than his own greed. Upon Marle's entry, the king tells her that the chancellor is trying to frame him, to which the chancellor says that all he needs to clear his name is for them to bring in proof that the shell remains in the castle.

It's fairly clear to them that the chancellor is up to no good, but they're kicked out of the courtroom. Fortunately, the shell should be somewhere in the castle, provided that the chancellor hasn't done anything with it. The three progress to the castle's basement, where they overhear some fiends mention that the their boss is finally going to settle his thirteen generation old family grudge by framing the king with fake evidence. They beat down the fiends in a haste and hurry along, while upstairs in the court room, the chancellor brings in a false witness to proclaim that he bought the shell from the king, who looked desperate for money. Finally, in the back of the basement, they find the rainbow shell, attached to which is a note, written by Queen Leene. The note is written to Marle, in which Leene tells her that even though things aren't easy with her father right now, she'll always be his daughter.

Nothing can break the bonds of blood, neither distance, nor words of anger. Someday she'll leave the nest and have children of her own, and then she'll understand the truth of what she says. Blood is the sap that flows through the limbs of a family tree, and come what may in future days, they'll be forever joined by that. With time of the essence, they break off a shard of the rainbow shell and hurry back upstairs, where the jury is currently proclaiming the king guilty. The guards at the front of the court will not budge to let them enter, so Marle leads the group around to a separate entrance. The separate entrance turns out to be behind the massive stained glass window, and just as the guards are about to haul off the king, Marle bursts out of the window into the courtroom.

She declares the entire situation to be a setup, and shows off the shard from the shell. Sensing that the game is up, the chancellor states that if he can't avenge his ancestors the easy way, he'll do so the hard way, and transforms into a creature similar to Yakra, the one that kidnapped Queen Leene. The three battle the transformed chancellor in the middle of the courtroom, and they prove to be more than a match for him, striking him down just like his ancestor. In the aftermath, Marle speaks with her father, who says that he was wrong to be so stubborn. He says that there was a time when he truly thought she was lost to him, but now he realizes that it was him who abandoned her. She says that from now on, she'll come to him to ask for advice, and talk about things like Crono and her mother.

The king says that it's taken him until now to understand what her mother meant with her final words, in which she said that someday when Marle is older, she'll bring someone she loves to meet him, and he should welcome the two of them with open arms. She said that that would make it a day he would remember forever. Marle was only a small child when her mother died, so she doesn't remember it, but she apologizes to her father for everything. With that done, Melchior is brought in to discuss the rainbow shell, and the real chancellor is found locked up in a chest within the castle.

Melchior uses the shell to make a single dress, incredibly powerful and resistant to all forms of magic. He also uses the shell combined with the power from the sunstone to make them some powerful spectacles, and an incredibly unique and exceptional sword for Crono. With that all done, the group has everything they need to finally tackle the black omen that has been hanging in the sky for thousands of years, and put a stop to Queen Zeal once and for all. Crono, Frog, and Magus fly the epoch back to 12,000 BC, where this all started, and land on the edge of the black omen.

Upon entry, they are greeted by Zeal, who asks them if they have not learned their lesson yet. She has been made immortal, and she shall live fo

2022-03-01 00:33

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