The Sixth Cycle Chapter 12

From: Cheryl Baumgartner(C Baumgartner, Posted Date: Nov 12th, 2011

 

            “What do you mean ‘stuck here’?” Loanna asked.

            “I got a visit from the Second Incarnation.  Basically he said I was an enormous embarrassment to the Pantheon, and that we aren’t ready to face Prince.  He said we have to stay here until they tell us we are ready.  Oh and my aim is ‘just plain lousy’.”

            “Well if your aim is lousy I’d hate to hear what they have to say about mine, you are better with the brace than I am.  We’ll both have to practice.”

            “It seems that they don’t want us to leave Terlara for some reason, Lo.  You know I’m more of a facts and figures type of guy.  Facts and figures say we should be en route to Corleone.  I’m having to put a lot of trust in ghosts here.”

            “In this case ghosts who know more than we do and are determined to help us.” She replied.

 

 

            Prince looked at the Dream Zone with shock.  He was still some distance away but even from here he could see it was surrounded by ‘souls’.  He had no idea where they had come from but they were there.  And more were joining them.  That meant that Priest was probably back in Duke’s realm, and Duke would be looking for Prince to show up. 

            This meant a slight change in plans, but one that Prince realized gave him other options to cause discord, confusion and pain.  He set off to find Fifi and give him a new mission.

 

 

            The Kais were shocked. 

            “How many died 790?” Third asked. 

“Over 2500 of them, and thousands more injured.  Most of the injured are expected to succumb to their injuries.  Our Kais were safe and sound on Terlara, and there were some who were still en route and hadn’t made it back to Corleone yet.” 790 said.

“One thing for sure this is going to cause problems.  The Unified Worlds just in effect became the Lawless Worlds.” Second said. 

“Prince certainly fouled up the waters.  With no one to enforce laws against violent crime it’s going to spiral out of control from here.” First added.

“It is a tactic I am quite familiar with.” Fourth said.  “Divine Shadows used it to great advantage.  A good number of the League of 20,000 were willing participants in their own subjugation.”

“You mean planets actually wanted to be a part of the Divine Order?” Fifth asked.

“Yes, I assassinated hundreds of governmental leaders.  Kill the governing entities and civil disorder follows.  Divine Shadow would then come to restore order leaving a puppet government in place.”      

“Divine Shadow also required each planet to broadcast hourly messages extolling the virtues of being a member of the League of 20,000.” 790 added.  “Being a member meant order and security.”

“Propaganda at it’s finest.” Third replied.  “I don’t think Prince is going to be sending out the Propaganda wagons.”

“No, but I’m sure he will stir the pot.  He thrives on discord.” Second said.

 

 

Dario and Loanna were in the sanctuary kneeling in front of the huge black candle when Brother  Stan came in.  The Priest walked up to the altar and placed four small black candles in holders around the larger black candle.  Then he knelt.

“The loss of life is a part of life.  We walk the path to make room so that others may be born.  It is balance.” He said quietly.  “In all things there must be balance, the balance has been disturbed.  Tonight we mourn the loss of your fellow Kais.  Those who perished were our brothers and sisters also.  We honor them with the small black candles.  We acknowledge their loss.

            Remain here with me while I perform the Ceremony of Balance.  The One performed this ceremony many times until we all understood the meaning of balance.  But sometimes you must tip the scales to restore balance.”

 

 

 

            The Five Kais of the Pantheon Majora stood quietly in the back of the sanctuary invisible to all. 

            “So what is this ‘Ceremony of Balance’?” Third asked.

            Before I married Bann and left for Alteri, I spent a lot of time with Grand High Priest Torq talking about what had happened.  One of the things we discussed was the vision of Rakais we all shared and the balance we all represented.  He thought we needed a way to bring that balance to the people of the Unified Worlds and we came up with the Ceremony of Balance.

            Basically Brother Stan is about to invoke the different balances we represent although I think he may change the ceremony to address current circumstances.  I have a feeling he is going to invoke at least one of them to deliberately put it out of balance.”

            Brother Timor had just finished setting five red candles on the altar.

            “Each of us is represented by a red candle.  It goes in order from the far left candle representing First, to the last candle on the right representing me.” Fifth explained.

            Now Brother Timor placed a gold candle and a black candle in front of each of the red candles.

            “The gold candle represents positive and the black represents negative.  He will light all of the red candles first invoking each member of the Pantheon in turn.  The red candle represents us in ‘balance’.”

            Brother Stan’s words were not understandable at this distance but he was stopping to speak as he lit each candle.  When he lit the last candle he and Brother Timor knelt before the altar and Dario and Loanna mimicked them bowing to place their foreheads to the floor at regular intervals.

Fourth spoke.  “They are repeating the prophecy.”

“How can you tell?” Fifth asked amazed.

“All the bobbing and bowing.”  Third replied.  “The day you were born we all were stuck here trying to get someone’s attention though three worship services and they all did that kneeling and bobbing thing while repeating the prophecy.”

Brother Stan had stood up and now was standing in front of the first candle.  He lit the gold candle.

“By lighting the Gold Candle he tips the balance toward love.”

“Hey!  I just got skipped.” Second noted.

“He has opted to leave you in balance.  He sees no need to upset the balance where you are concerned.” Fifth replied.   “Now he’s tipping the balance towards obedience by lighting the gold Candle in front of yours Third.”

Next Brother Stan lit the black candle in front of Fourth’s red candle.

“No surprise there.” First remarked dryly.

“Skipped you too Brat.” Second said.

“For the next week the candles will burn constantly.” Fifth noted.

 

 

“Do you understand the meaning of the ceremony?” Brother Stan asked the two Kais.

“Love, obedience and evil, I got that but I don’t understand what it means to us.” Dario said.

“You must be obedient to your last orders, embrace the darkness.  I fear that you will step farther into that darkness than you think.  But you must anchor yourself with love, not hatred.  Like the Dark One, you must do evil to serve good.  You will only find the one responsible for the destruction on Corleone through evil.” Brother Stan said.  “But that is not the only reason for the ceremony.  Through this ceremony we spread the message to the masses.”

“Spread the message?” Loanna asked.

“Before you continued your training to become a Kai, what were you?” Brother Stan asked.

“We were warrior priests.” Dario answered.

“As are all who serve in the temple.” Brother Stan said.  “We are all warriors.  And every citizen of the Unified Worlds is a warrior to some degree.  It is a part of our education.

With the rise of the Kais, people laid down their weapons and looked to you.  It is now time to pick them up again.  There is a great evil among us, an evil that fears nothing.  We must face this evil but that can only be done by fighting fire with fire.”

 

 

“Those of us who made the exodus are free to travel the Other Zone.  The Dream Zone itself may be in danger.  We must give our Kais all the help they need.  We must be able to fight within the Dream Zone if necessary.” Irina said to the gathered Brunnen G.

“Simply tell us what The Warlord requires.” A tall dark-skinned man replied.  “He was like a father to me and my brother Hir.”

“The Kais are of the tribes.  It was made so when my brother and I went through the adoption ceremony.  His blood is my blood.  The tribes of the Gravity Desert will do whatever we are asked.”  Jute spoke up.

“The nice part about the Dream Zone is that we are made whole.  Tell The Warlord his youngest son stands ready on two good legs, and my brothers and sisters stand with me.”  Damon, the Warlord’s youngest son spoke up from where he stood with his brothers and sisters.

“Brak and I will accompany you.” Selai said.  “It would not hurt to have a Sister Superior to help advise them, and Brak can relay messages back and forth.  Perhaps even figure out why passing through the fractal core makes crossing the barrier possible.”

“We will all fight.” Torq the First Dead spoke.  “Tell Kai that I will rally the Brunnen G in the Dream Zone.  He repaid my cruelty and hatred with honor and loyalty.  He avenged my death and honored my memory.  I will now repay that honor with my honor.  If this Prince wants a fight, we will give it to him.”

“The Family of Kai will not be idle.” Lynna spoke up.  “We will help to spread the word.”

“Excuse me, but I think that I can also help.  I spent thousands of years with nothing to do except read and reread the texts and manuscripts in the Library.  All the knowledge that we gathered throughout our history is stored in my mind.” Poet spoke up.

“Then it is time to go, to meet with them.  We will return to let you know what they said.” Irnia said.  “Come Selai, Brak;  time is a luxury that we may not enjoy at this point.”