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Chapter XXXVI

AN: BIG battle chapter. Here we go, the last fights of book number I.

Julia groaned as she saw Satori in a battle stance before her and the rest of the Wolf Pack. "Oh, gods, why don't you just go away?! We've already kicked your ass, you'd think you'd learn by now!"

Satori didn't even bother with a comeback, and her sais charged with white power. Seeing this attack done before, the Pack scattered to dodge. However, Satori saw it coming and followed a cluster of them. Using her Shock Break attack, she blasted Corin, Celeste and Lancer into a nearby wall. The three gasped in pain and the shock of almost falling off the floor they were on. On each level, there were open areas that would allow someone to see to the very bottom. That was the last place the three of them wanted to be falling at one hundred floors up.

Satori charged Julia next, slashed out repeatedly with her sai daggers, trying with all her might to tear apart the Mysidian in front of her. Julia back-stepped to dodge the first ones, but ending up having to flip out of the way of the last bunch. Once she landed again, she charged forward with her staff, using both ends to attack very rapidly. It proved no problem for the Estharian general, and she batted the attacks away effortlessly.

Edea, a few feet away, launched a Firaga into Satori's side, sending her flying backwards a few feet. She flipped herself back up, and awaited the now charging Raine. The Alpha Wolf began to slash violently at her, and Satori began to back out of the way, not sure her sais were strong enough to block those blows.

Raine went back into her Shaduna state, and began to attack at twice the speed. She ran towards Satori, and sent several dozen stabs in the direction of Satori's mid-section. She heard Satori gasp in fear, and while she blocked the first two attacks- barely- she leapt out of the way. Zion saw this coming, and began to fire at her. Blue laser energy began hitting the area around her, and she ducked and ran out of the way as quick as she could.

She used one of her sais as a throwing dagger, and threw it forcefully at Zion. He barely had time to leap out of the way, and he landed not so gracefully on the floor. She ran over to attack him one more, rolling and reclaiming her lost sai first. Now with both again, she attacked the gunner at lightning speeds. Not used to melee combat, Zion simply jumped back out of the way, side stepping when needed to avoid the blows.

Seeing the two and their current location, Raine suddenly had an idea. While Satori was busy with Zion, she wasn't paying attention to Raine. Raine placed Ultima Blade in front of her diagonally, the flat side of the blade pointed at Satori. She began to sprint as fast as she could towards the general, who only saw her when it was too late. Raine slammed into Satori like a football tackler, pushing her several feet backwards. Before Satori saw what was happening, she fell into one of the open areas that led to the bottom of the tower. Before she fell, she grabbed a hold of the edge of the floor, trying to pull herself back up.

Raine stepped on Satori's hand, smiling slightly. Satori screamed in fear and pain as her hand let go under the weight of Raine's body. Raine quickly pulled her leg back, and watched the general fall screaming into the blackness below.

"All right, we don't have time for this." Raine announced. "Let's get Virados... now!"

The others nodded, and followed her as she began to ascend the stone steps that led to the room above them. They sprinted up, careful not to fall or trip over any of the fairly large steps before them. The staircase was long, and it took several minutes to ascend the full height of them. Once they did, they were faced with a large and highly decorated oak door.

Raine shoved it open, and saw Virados in the center of the large room, his back to them. "Virados!"

He chuckled softly. "Well, I hope you infidels are pleased with yourselves. Now I must repeat this whole task again! Luckily, this second time, you will not be there to cause me trouble!"

Raine's grip tightened on her sword as he said this and turned around, anger clearly in his eyes. He quickly drew out Emerald Blade, and his mouth twisted into a snarl. The others went into their standard battle formation when facing one enemy, they swarmed around him each soldier on the outside of the room.

Raine naturally charged first. She immediately went into her trance, and rapidly struck out at her enemy, who easily batted away her weapon with his own. He grabbed her by the throat, and flung her backwards against the wall behind her. Edea in return, casted a Thundaga at him. He spread his wings and flapped out of the way, sending the spell flying dangerously close to Epsilon.

Virados raise both arms to the sky, and sent out a deadly ray of energy above him. This energy exploded outward, causing the roof to fly off. This allowed him to fly higher, into the night sky above. He shot up, ready to cast a Flare on Celeste. Julia followed suit, and spread her own wings. She flew up to meet him, and her snarled at her.

She struck out with her staff, and the two began to exchange blows back and forth. They clashed their blades, pushing against each other with all their might. Naturally, she found herself behind pushed backwards. She shot higher into the air, and sent a Holy spell crashing into his body below. He was slammed downward, and landed back on the floor of the room. She flipped down again to be level with him, her wings retracted.

He casted an Ultima on them, sending the people on the left side of the room to be slammed against the wall, and forced them to howl in pain as the energy began to tear into their skin. Lancer charged forward, bursting through the flames of the Ultima. He attacked with his spear, almost connecting it with Virados' heart. The dark Mysidian stepped out of the way, and slashed out at the blue mage before him. Lancer blocked the first attack, but was struck on the second one. He clutched is bleeding side in pain, and Virados kicked him to the other side of the room. Lilliana and Celeste caught him, and quickly worked on healing him.

Andraia, fully pissed off for lack of a better phrase, called Fenrir into battle. The demon wolf was only guardian, aside from Carbuncle, who could fit into the room, and she was fully intent of using him. The wolf growled as his entered the room, hugging his body low to the ground. He charged at Virados, leaping towards him ready to tear his throat open.

Virados chuckled malevolently and raised his arm before the beast could attack. A large and powerful beam of energy flew from his hand, striking the demon wolf in the heart. It whimpered and fell to the ground dead. It then vanished back into its realm to heal. The red headed Mysidian then glared at the others around him. He raised his arm to perform that attack on the Wolves.

He shot the beam out at Celeste, who dove out of the way. Keeping the beam active, he sliced it down the room, attempting to take off the limb of a slow moving target. Before it could hit anyone, Raine attacked again. She sent lightning quick strikes towards Virados' who barely could block them all. Julia and Edea used this opportunity to strike as well. They both casted Flare on him, blasting him with red hot energy. He wailed slightly, and casted Holy on both of them, sending the pain right back.

Edea was pushed into a limit break, and felt her sorceress powers surging. She allowed a blue light to encircle her arm, and form a large and dangerous ice javelin above her head. She sent it flying towards him, and he was still dueling with Raine. He quickly kicked her out of the way, and casted a Firaga at the oncoming ice blade. It melted partially, but sliced his side. He clutched it in pain and the javelin hit the floor behind him, melting into a small puddle of water.

Lancer followed suit, casting Shadow Flare on Virados. The room shifted from light to dark, and blasted Virados with intense magical energy. It wasn't enough to stop him, but enough to damage him. He casted a Cura on himself, slightly repairing the damage, and attacked again. He flew into the air again, and blasted down two Tornado spells. The intense wind picked up the Pack and slammed them back into the ground, causing immense pain and suffering.

Corin countered by throwing two shurikens at him, removing them from his jean pocket. The two metallic weapons hit Virados in his left wing, sending him plummeting back down to the floor. Julia took this time to fly into the air herself. Casting Flame Star, she hoped to kill the corrupt Mysidian herself.

The five beams of fire intersected, forming the star with Virados in the middle. Before he had time to get out of the way, the flames erupted from the ground. He screamed as the flames ate away at his armor and burned his skin. The attack lasted for several seconds, and Julia expected Virados to pass out at this point.

However, he still stood. Some of the other Wolves were almost ready to collapse from their own pain, yet he, who had endured more, still stood before them. Granted, he was clutching his side in pain and was slightly limping as he moved, but it wasn't enough to leave him harmless. He attacked Raine with great speed, and she almost had trouble blocking them. Attack after attack she defended against, and then she saw an opening.

She dropped to her knees, dodging one of his attacks, and returned her own. She swung Ultima with all her might, and sliced open his upper leg. He howled in pain, and attempted to stab her into the ground with his weapon before he fell. She rolled out of the way, and saw Virados drop to the ground.

Not sure if he was dead or not, she barked out an order. "Mages! Cast your most powerful spell at him! Now!"

Edea casted a Flare, and Julia an Ultima. The two spells slammed into his form, tearing apart what was left of his health. When the flames and magic energy cleared, Virados was left on the floor, unmoving. His armor had been torn apart and he was bleeding profusely. Raine, still unsure, walked over to him. She kicked him hard in the face, and when he didn't get up to counter, she was sure.

"He's done for..." Raine said with a slight smile. "Lily and Andraia, cure everyone and lets get the hell out of here. We've got about five minutes until this place goes off."

The white mages did as they were told, sending a Curaga into each and every person until they were all healed back to their normal strengths. Raine exhaled slowly, clearing some of the adrenaline from her body. Her parents and friends had finally been avenged, and the anger and hate she had held was already beginning to vanish. She smiled at the others, seeing them ready to go.

"Remember that room we saw about five floors down? The one with that glider thing? We can use that to get away... come on, let's go!" She ordered, and took off back down the stairs. The rest followed closely.

Once the room was empty, Virados grabbed something from his pocket. It was a tiny little crystal, but it held much power. Hyne had given it to him and told him if he was ever near death, to use it. It would save him, and allow him to crush his enemies. He cracked it open, crushing it in his hand. Power spread from the crystal to him, and he felt a new wave of strength coming over his body...


They rushed into the room where they had seen a glider a few levels before reaching Satori and Virados. It was the only way now to get clear before the explosion crushed everything in their area. It wasn't exactly glamorous. It had no top to protect them from wind, and could barely fit all of them in there at once. It would be a difficult flight, but as long as they got away, they were happy.

The piled into the craft, and Julia flipped open its retracted wings. Once everyone was in, she flipped the switch for the automatic catapult, and the glider launched quickly out of the room and into the sky. It flew into the air, and they began the journey to safety.

Corin cheered from the back of the craft. "Sweet! We did it! That'll teach the bastard to attack Balamb and try to live!"

Raine laughed. "Thanks you guys! You all fought wonderfully! I can't give you guys enough gratitude."

Andraia smiled. "Aww... don't worry about it boss! We were glad to do it!"

"Though..." Julia interrupted. "... I wouldn't mind borrowing your Nintendo for a couple of days."

"You already broke that you stupid idiot." Raine replied smirking.

While they laughed, Raine heard a dark voice in her mind. "Leonhart...."

Raine and Julia, who heard it too, burst to attention. They looked at each other, and both knew that it wasn't their mind playing tricks on them. They knew just by their looks that both were ready to go and attack the still surviving Virados. Julia jumped out of the pilot's seat, leaving Lilliana to fly it. She grabbed Raine by the coat collar, and spread her wings.

"What are you two doing?" Edea asked, worried.

"You guys keep going." Raine ordered. "Don't turn back around."

Just then, the both of them leapt off of the glider, causing several Wolves to scream in alarm. Julia held on to Raine, and flapped her wings to stay airborne with the extra weight. She flew back to the top of the tower, which was still in ruins from Virados blasting off the roof.

"Julia!" Zion called after her, but the Mysidian didn't turn back around.

"You suicidal idiots!" Edea screamed, tears welling up in her eyes.

It was too late, they had disappeared back into the ruins of the tower.


Julia dropped Raine down on her feet, and retracted her wings, falling in place next to her. Virados' body suddenly came back to life in front of them. He stood back up, pure rage in his bright eyes. Logical thinking was replaced with primal violence and hatred, and the crystal was working. It mutated his body, and he grew before them. He reached a height of twelve feet tall, and his muscle mass grew to almost four times what it was before. His angelic wings transformed into dark demonic ones, bat like and scale covered. He tilted his mutated head back, and from the depths of his being, he let out a primal roar which shook the ground the girls stood on.

Emerald Blade shifted shape as well, growing in size along with it's master. It now was twice as long as the girl's heights, and looked twice as powerful as it did before. At least this time Emerald Weapon didn't accompany it.

Virados charged forwards, shaking the ground as he ran. Julia and Raine split up, Julia taking to the air, and Raine strafing to her left. Virados attacked Raine first, using his blade to strike downwards. She leapt out of the way, and saw the blade slice apart the stone that she had been standing on. She rolled forward, and went back into her Shaduna state. She stabbed him violently in the leg with her energy enriched sword. He growled above, and attempted to kick her. She jumped back, and dodged yet another sword attack.

Julia, above, sent a powerful Ultima spell crashing into Virados' head. She was running out of mana reserve energy, so she had to make every spell count. It blasted Virados, almost sending him toppling to the ground as he was nearly thrown off balance. He slashed out to Julia, who dove out of the way and casted a Flare. It plowed into his demonic chest, and sent him backwards a bit.

While he was stunned with that, Raine leapt up, the room going dark. Her blade turned blue, and white sparks began to fill the room. She perform Silver Night, and brought the blade down. The energy escaped, and lit the sparks on fire. They exploded, and the blade energy combined with that blasted Virados in the chest. Normally, it would have taken off a limb, but due to his state, it only burned him.

He tried to attack again, but she back-flipped out of the way. His sword crushed a stone pillar that helped to hold up what was left of the walls. It shattered when it was hit, and crumbled into several small pieces. Virados then casted Ultima at Julia, sending the explosion into the flying Mysidian. She was flung backwards, and screamed in pain as the energy burned her.

She flew back over, casting another Flare at him. He howled in pain, and Raine once again leapt up to attack him. She slashed at his chest several times, slightly penetrating his now thick skin. Blood began to seep out of his stomach.

Raine and Julia glanced at each other, now that he was wounded. They nodded, sharing a silent conversation for a second. Raine leapt up, her blade once again a deep blue. Julia followed, amazed that her own staff was turning deep red. Raine jumped, and Julia dove, and both began to unleash their two most devastating attacks, Alpha for Raine, and Omega for Julia.

They struck many, many times, blinding Virados in the flurry of their attacks. Raine crushed him in her compressed sphere of energy, and it erupted outwards. Julia's Omega attack sent a wall of fire into Virados, burning every inch of his flesh. The wall of flame burst out in a fiery explosion. Virados wailed and screamed in pain. An attack that broke apart pure crystal and a new one that incinerated everything was no match for the demonic being in front of them.

He landed on his back, unable to stand back up. His body convulsed now, trying in vain to stay alive after the massive attacks that had been given to him. Raine landed gracefully back on the ground, and stepped towards him. His demonic eyes glared at her, and her roared deeply as she approached him.

She raised her weapon, and stabbed him right between the eyes.

Julia groaned. "And will you please stay dead this time? I swear! Villains, they always come back when you least need it."

The tower rumbled below them, and the crystal finally lost its stability. The tower below blew apart, and the shockwave spread through the city. The blast knocked down everything, buildings, trees and anything that stood in its path. Raine and Julia looked down, blinded by the bright blue light below them. The floor they stood on was breaking apart due to the blast, and Julia saw only one choice.

She and Raine leapt off of the side of the tower, and it exploded behind them. As they fell, Julia grabbed a hold of Raine, and the two began to fly away from the city as it was ripped apart below them.


Their landing hadn't been exactly graceful. The shockwave from the blast knocked Julia down once they reached the city limits. The two fell to the snowy ground below them. They rolled to a halt, both passing out from the speed at which they hit. For at least an hour, they were unconscious, until someone roused them.

Julia woke to the face Zion smiling above her. They smile greatly, and brought each other into a deep kiss. A kiss that was blissful, until and angry voice stopped them.

"You two are by far, the most idiotic people I have ever met!" Edea screamed, now that both Raine and Julia were awake. The two looked back at her sheepishly, feeling a bit like small children confronting an angry parent.

"Well... we killed him, didn't we?!" Julia shot back, though Raine remained completely neutral.

"Enough, Edea. They are all right!" Lilliana said, then turned from the raging sorceress to the two on the ground. "Take a look behind you. See what you guys escaped from."

Both girls raised an eyebrow, but looked back behind them. Julia's jaw dropped at what she saw. Nothing had survived. No buildings, no people, no snow even. There was a gigantic crater the size of the city itself. A giant hole in the middle of the plains, right in front of a mountain range. Raine sighed in relief as she remembered the city had been evacuated to all of the border towns. At least only the soldiers, and not the civilians had been harmed.

"Holy crap..." Julia said to herself as she saw it.

"Celeste used the Valhalla's emergency transmitter to radio the Galbadians. They should be here any second." Lancer informed them, helping the two girls stand up.

"Good." Raine said. The she smirked. "I have only one thing to say to them, too. "'I want a vacation.'"

Epsilon laughed. "Don't forget hazard pay! We're entitled to that too!"

"Oh, yeah!" Andraia giggled. "Vacations would be good right now. I can barely move!"

The reunion between friends was brought to a halt as the sound of rotor blades interrupted them. A large Galbadian transport helicopter, with another chopper as escort, sat down a few feet away from them. Snow and dust kicked up into the air, and they covered their faces until the engines had stopped.

From the escort helicopter stepped a tall blonde man. He laughed as he saw them. Jesse Almasy, his team along with him, stood in front of them with a smirk and a warm smile. "See guys! I told you I wouldn't let you down!"

Then, from the main helicopter, came Colonel Reinhart. The Pack's faces froze when the saw him, and he had only one thing to say. "Where in the hell have you people been?!"

They burst out laughing at that. Raine could barely manage a reply through her own laughter, but did so. "Well, let's just say, we completed our mission. And... Helios isn't exactly a threat anymore."



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