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Chapter 26

Posted by PURPLEYHAN STORIES on Saturday, June 18, 2016

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Nakaupo ako ngayon sa harapan ng isang malaki at lumang libro pero hindi ako nakatingin doon. Natatakot ako sa pwede kong makita o mabasa kaya naman kay Master napunta ang tingin ko.

"This is the Book of Prophecies," the Divine General said. "Written by the best Seers from the ancient times up to the present." Pagkasabi niya nun ay napatingin ako sa kanya pabalik sa librong nasa harapan ko. "Major and minor prophecies were recorded here and some of them already happened..."

The book was four or five times bigger and thicker than a normal book. The pages were already brittle and delicate due to its age but I can feel the radiating power of each words written.


"...while some is already happening and will surely happen," pagtatapos niya.

Kinilabutan ako nung narinig ko 'yun dahil alam kong totoo ang sinasabi niya. Prophecies are powerful words chanted by Seers. And these words will happen, based on our interpretations, whether we like it or not.

Sa page na natapat sa akin ay nakita ko ang prophecy na binanggit ni Tita Aina. Parang ang tagal na nung huli kong narinig iyon pero ngayong nababasa ko ulit ay bumalik lahat ng naramdaman ko noong una ko iyong napakinggan.

Where the havoc has ended,
Another will be started;
Fangs and wings shall decide,
The Shadow will be your guide.
Hell will breathe its fire and rage,
Until the seal and the Guardian break their cage;
The dead shall take the blame,
And the Divian burns in flame.

I shivered. I can't believe that four days from now, this prophecy might come true. No. It will really happen.

"Ito ang propesiyang sinabi ni Aina," sabi ni Divine General. When I looked at the three Spirit Masters behind him, I saw their dark and grim expressions.

"Alam n'yo na po ba ang ibig sabihin ng mga linya sa prophecy?" tanong ko at ramdam ko ang tensyon sa loob ng kwartong ito. Ngumiti naman sa akin ang Divine General at tumingin sa direksyon ng Spirit Masters.

"Yes, but I think they should be the ones explaining this to you." Nalito naman ako nung bigla siyang naglakad palayo at mukhang aalis na siya mula rito.

"A-are you leaving already, Divine General?" tanong ko at lumingon naman siya.

"Marami pa akong dapat gawin. Pumunta lang ako rito para tignan kung handa ka na ba talagang harapin ang katotohanan. At ayon sa iyong mga mata, handa ka na."

Pagkasabi niya nun ay natulala na lang ako at tinignan ko siya hanggang sa mawala siya sa paningin ko. Lumapit naman sa akin ang tatlong Spirit Masters na nandito ngayon at umupo si Astrid sa harapan ko habang sina Henric at Master ay nasa magkabilang-gilid ko.

"Just like what Divine General Arsen said, prophecies are absolute. And this second havoc prophecy will certainly happen," Astrid said as her fingers trail the pages.

"Pero paano kayo nakakasiguro na may kinalaman nga ako sa prophecy? Paano kung...paano kung nagkamali lang si Tita Aina?" giit ko.

At first, I was actually excited and curious about what my role would be on this prophecy that Tita Aina accidentally talked about. Pero ngayong papalapit na ang labanan, mas nangibabaw ang takot ko. Takot sa responsibilidad na pwedeng mapunta sa akin.

"Aina is the best Seer of this generation," sabi ni Master. "She won't say something that won't come true or doesn't have any value."

"Besides, the Divine General seems so sure that you're really involved in this matter," dagdag naman ni Henric.

"The prophecy that she revealed is actually the second—"

Natigil naman sa pagsasalita si Astrid dahil bigla kaming may narinig na malakas na pagsabog. When I looked at them, their expressions quickly changed into defensive approach. I was about to stand up but the floor suddenly trembled.

"What's happening—ugh!" Napatingin naman ako bigla kay Master dahil bigla siyang sumigaw. Nagsimula na akong magpanic nung napasigaw rin si Astrid at kita naman sa mukha ni Henric ang pagpipigil ng sakit.

"A-anong n-nangyayari sa inyo?" Binalance ko ang sarili ko at lumapit ako kay Master. She was clutching her upper left arm and I caught a glimpse of light around that area. Pagtingin ko kina Henric, hawak niya naman ang batok niya, samantalang si Astrid ay nakadiin ang kamay sa noo. And then I saw it.

They all have the same markings on their particular body parts.

"T-the Divine General!" sigaw ni Henric at pinilit niyang tumayo pero pare-pareho kaming natumba dahil sa lakas ng pagyanig. "Shit!"

"
Cies servo notas!" Astrid chanted and spirit particles began circling the Book of Prophecies. Nawala ang epekto ng lindol sa libro at naging kalmado ang parte kung nasaan 'yun.

"Reika, we're sorry but we have to postpone this talk. For now, we need to be with the Divine General," sabi ni Master sabay tingin niya kina Astrid at Henric. "Let's go!"

Kahit hindi ko alam ang nangyayari ay sumunod ako sa kanila. Patuloy pa rin ang paglindol kaya naman patigil-tigil kami sa pagtakbo. Then I realized that this quake may not be natural. Maybe this was created by the 
silvanias inhabiting this place...wait...that means...

There's danger.

Nang makarating kami sa Divine Hall ay naabutan din namin doon ang iba pang Spirit Masters at maging sina Ryleigh, Lexi at Yano. And just like what happened to them, the other Spirit Masters also have the same marking engraved on their certain body part.

"I'm fine."

Nagulat naman ako nung biglang lumabas sa Hall si Divine General pero ang lalo kong ikinabigla ay ang dugong dumadaloy sa braso niya. Tumutulo na 'yun sa sahig pero wala pa rin siyang pakialam at kitang-kita ko sa mukha ng Spirit Masters na nag-aalala sila para sa kanya.

"What happened, Divine General?" tanong ni Lark at nakita kong inadjust niya ang eye patch niya.

The Divine General looked at his bloody hand and said, "Ignus is coming. I guess his desperateness overcomes the curse that 
they created." Tumingin siya sa amin pabalik sa kamay niya. "This is his warning."

The atmosphere instantly changed and became suffocating. Their expressions turned into combat approach, and looking at them frightened me. These people are Spirit Masters, the strongest Divians who keep the peace and order in this nation, and assist the Divine General on his decisions and orders.

"Blade, Shadow," sabi ni Divine General habang nakatingin kina Master at Gavin. "Train them," sabay tingin niya sa aming apat na apprentices.

"Yes, Divine General," they answered as they bowed to him.

"The rest of the Spirit Masters, follow me. We're going to prepare for another havoc."

"Yes, Divine General!"

Sumunod sa kanya sina Astrid, Henric, Adrielle, Lark at Tito Leon habang naiwan kami rito kasama sina Master at Gavin.

"W-what the heck did just happen?" Pagkasabi nun ni Lexi ay saka ko narealize na kanina ko pa pinipigilan ang paghinga ko.

"Look at that poor guardian," sabi ni Master habang nakatingin sa loob ng Divine Hall kaya napasilip din kaming apat. Parang lumubog ang puso ko nung nakita ko ang isang aso na unti-unti nang nawawala ang physical form. Its spirit particles were starting to perish and I immediately thought of Jerry.

"An Ainu dog, despite its gentle features, is a known hunter and will do everything to protect its owner," Gavin said. "He must have been ordered to hunt the Divine General until he dies."

"That's cruel," sabi ni Yano at yumuko siya sabay tanggal sa salamin niya.

"How can a Divian do this to his own guardian?" I asked, scared that one day, my own guardians might face the same fate.

"They aren't Divians," biglang sabi ni Ryleigh at kita ko sa mukha niya ang galit. I've seen him pissed a lot of times but this is the first time I saw him beyond angry. He's really mad. "This is the work of an Exorcist. They kill and exterminate guardians and their owners without a second thought."

"Ryleigh." Gavin stepped closer to him and shoved his sheathed sword into Ryleigh's stomach. "Control your temper. Do you want 
that to happen again?"

Ryleigh closed his eyes and started breathing deeply. Nagkatinginan naman kami ni Lexi dahil hindi namin alam kung anong nangyayari at alam kong pareho rin kami ng naiisip. Besides the attack, what bothered me was the words said by the Divine General.

"Anyway, come with us. We need to see your improvement, if there's any."

Nagsimulang maglakad sina Master at Gavin kaya naman agad kaming sumunod. Nasa pinakalikuran kami ni Lexi at bigla niya akong siniko.

"Ano palang nangyari sa'yo? Saan ka pumunta kanina?" mahina niyang tanong. Nagdalawang-isip naman ako kung sasabihin ko pero dahil isa siya sa pinagkakatiwalaan ko ay nagdesisyon akong sabihin sa kanya.

"Nagkita kami ni Divine General kanina, kasama ang ibang Spirit Masters."

"What? Bakit? May ginawa ka bang kasalanan? Teka, anong ginawa nila sa'yo?"

"Wala. May pinakita lang sila sa aking libro."

"Libro?"

"The Book of Prophecies." Napahinto siya sa paglalakad nung sinabi ko 'yun.

"Y-you mean...the collection of all the prophecies seen and chanted by the best Seers of each generation?" Napangiti naman ako dahil ngayon ko na lang ulit nakitang ganito ka-excited si Lexi bukod sa hilig niya sa salamin.

"Yeah."

Sinabi ko sa kanya na nabasa ko roon ang sinabi ni Tita Aina at kinwento ko rin ang nangyari bago kami mapunta sa Divine Hall pero napatigil kami nung huminto sa paglalakad ang mga nasa harapan namin.

"We're here," sabi ni Master at napanganga ako nung makita ko kung nasaan kami.

"This is the harshest training room inside Hydra and sorry to say this but you need to get stronger within four days," Gavin said in a demanding tone.

"Get inside."

Pumasok naman kaming apat sa loob ng kwarto at bigla kong naalala ang training namin kay Henric. There are still spirit particles scattered around but this isn't just an empty white room anymore. Rainforest, grassland, desert and other combined biomes dominate the landscape.

And then something weird happened. The four of us felt an overwhelming aura and both Ryleigh and Yano shoved us away. We all fell to the ground and a sudden and strong gust cleared all species in the place where we stood a while ago.

"Rule number one: Don't lose your attention in front of your enemies. Did you forget that already? Ryleigh? Yano?"

Gavin stood several meters away from us with his white uniform and all of his swords unsheathed. That means that aura I felt was from him. But a few seconds after that, another bone-chilling aura lingered around us. Bigla kaming nagkatinginan ni Lexi.

"Carlos!"
"Smith!"

Carlos and Smith materialized in front of us and I pulled Ryleigh with me while Yano and Lexi mounted on Smith. Isang hakbang pa lang ang nagagawa nina Carlos at Smith ay nabiyak kaagad ang lupa kung nasaan kami kanina.

"Oh, nice dodge."

Pagtingin ko ay nandoon si Master at nababalot ang buong katawan at mukha niya ng itim na damit at tela. Lumakad siya papunta kay Gavin at humarap silang dalawa sa amin. Kahit hindi ko nakikita ang mukha ni Master ay alam kong sa ilalim ng itim na tela ay nakangiti siya.

"Blade and Shadow..." I muttered. "The Divine General called the two of you Blade and Shadow."

Iyon ang dahilan kung bakit kami nagkatinginan kanina ni Lexi. Those names...

"Those are our battle name," sabi ni Gavin. "The only time he calls us by those names is when we're preparing for a battle and during the fight."

"But what about those marks?" tanong naman ni Yano. "Sir Gavin, wala ka namang ganyang marka sa kamay mo dati. Anong ibig sabihin ng mga 'yan?"

Both of them looked at their own marks. Unlike a while ago, the markings weren't illuminating anymore but they look like scars embedded on their skin.

"This is the mark of the Spirit Masters and it usually appears when the Divine General is in trouble or..." Napatigil si Master at saglit silang nagkatinginan ni Gavin na para bang pinagdedesisyunan kung sasabihin ba sa amin o hindi. "Anyway, enough with the questions. Let's get started—"

"I have one last question, Master," seryoso kong sabi at maging sina Lexi ay napatingin sa akin.
"What is it?"

Huminga ako nang malalim dahil natatakot akong malaman ang sagot pero gusto ko ring maliwanagan sa mga pwedeng mangyari.

"
Where the havoc has ended,
Another will be started;
Fangs and wings shall decide,
The Shadow will be your guide."

I recited the first half of the prophecy and I saw the glint on Master's eyes. Alam kong alam na niya ang itatanong ko pero hinintay niya pa rin akong magsalita.

"Are you 
that Shadow?"

Hindi ko mabasa ang expression niya dahil sa telang nakabalot sa mukha niya. Ilang segundong katahimikan ang lumipas at nagulat ako nung nagsimula siyang magsalita.

"Naaalala mo pa ba noong una mong sinabi ang prophecy na 'yan sa akin?"

Bigla ko namang naalala noong nasa bahay kami ni Master sa gitna ng kakahuyan. Sinabi ko sa kanya ang dahilan kung bakit kami pumunta ni Lexi sa Capital pati na rin ang mismong prophecy na sinabi ni Tita Aina noong nagpakita sa amin ang crow. I remember how her face became pale when she heard the whole prophecy.

"I told you, Aina won't say something that won't come true or doesn't have any value. When I heard my battle name in that prophecy and you said that you're the daughter of Kass and Ramon, I knew that our lives are meant to be intertwined."

All of a sudden, both of them changed into their half-animal form.

"Reika, I am Shadow, and I will guide you to your excellence," she said as Lily's wings grew on her back. "Now, come. Show us the fruit of your training and experience, Divians."

I don't know if it's because of her words or we're just drawn by their strength and intensity, but the four of us, without saying anything to each other, summoned our guardians and geared up to give our all.


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