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Destiny JENOVA III: Origins (Chapter 9: Against the Storm Within)

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  1. Kadaj
    Previously...

    Sephiroth and JENOVA learned the cause of Vincent's actions, hearing of a strange virus that he was apparently infected with that caused him to lash out against his own kind. After several days of observation at JENOVA Foundation, Rufus had managed to get some information about the new virus and made hasty action to contact Sephiroth thereafter. After receiving the call, Sephiroth returned to JENOVA Foundation to meet up with Rufus and discuss the testing results concerning the mysterious virus, hoping to find out that Rufus once again knew everything about the issue after finishing the scheduled experiments.

    Chapter 9: Against the Storm Within


    (This section will focus on Sephiroth as the speaker) I returned to the top floor at JENOVA Foundation to discuss the virus problem with Rufus. He didn't tell me much over the phone, but he did say he had something urgent to discuss about it. I didn't like that one bit; this couldn't be good news i was going to hear. I entered the area to see Rufus operating the massive computer system. It looked as though he was analyzing the new research. I was the first to speak "Hey, what's the news about the results?" Not waiting another minute, he turned around in his chair to face my direction and said "I hate to break it to you, but we've got trouble. Whatever Brother Vincent and Young Kadaj got infected with, its very serious. As you and Mother discussed, the virus has negative effects on the host's behavior. What you two probably weren't certain of is its deadly effects on the body of our race: it destroys our JENOVA cells and prevents them from regenerating. Fortunately however, it doesn't prevent the host from recovering them by external means." I had a feeling he would say that and shook my head staring downwards. I then asked "Any cure yet?" Rufus turned around in his chair, and began typing away on the computer. He seemed to be trying to pull up something else. After a short while, the top screen display changed and Rufus continued "Its hard to say, but the killer cells behave strangely identical in nature to how Geostigma affected humans before the dawn of Mother's Eternal Aeon... in other words, they behave similarly when they invade a body that attempts to fight them off rather than safely absorb them without any negative side effects--no different than how we can safely house Mother's cells but humans can die from too much exposure. That same rule seems to be the case with the new virus." Then i felt strange and said "What does this have to do with a cure?" Rufus quickly replied "Easy, Big Brother; no need to cop an attitude. The point im getting to is how humans could recover from the stigma by going into that body of water that healed them... likewise, our kind can soak in black water and heal within a matter of seconds. Its no guarantee, but i would say its a possible fix." I then said "Well anything is worth a try at this point. I dont want this spreading across the entire kingdom. I would rather prevent that then let it run wild. The only problem is that only our Little Sister can do that.... she's the only one with the power to turn any body of water into black water. I cant keep sending patients to her like that... do you have any intel on where the virus came from?" Rufus sighed and shrugged, then answered "Sadly, no. However, something seems a little off about Mother's lifestream.... im detecting an unwelcome presence there. I don't know where it came from unfortunately. But i can track the malicious energy to search for any residual energies in the closer quarters of the cosmos. If its intrusion is recent, its very likely there are mild traces of the source out there beyond Mother's Planet which can help me identify the source and possibly where it came from.... hopefully i wont be detected. If theres some dangerous monster out there, we're in big trouble." Thats when i sighed and felt my guilt return. I knew what he meant and what could be well on its way if it wasn't already nearby: SAKUI. I didn't want to believe that; i didn't even want to think about it. But i still knew it was very likely. Rufus seem to take notice to my expression and said "Big Brother, whats wrong? You never look like that." I kept silent and didn't answer; just stood motionless staring into space. Rufus didn't wait to speak again; he continued "Are you scared? Whats bothering you?" Quickly reacting, i said "No, im just... just tired. Im not scared of anything; you know that..." Rufus didn't seem convinced; he said "Big Brother, whats going on? Youve been acting out of it lately.... like youre sad or scared. If youre worried about something i wont laugh at you--we're brothers." I immediately said "It has nothing to do with being laughed at, Brother.... its highly classified information i cant get out of my head. Its no laughing matter at all.... its impending doom and danger." Rufus quickly seemed to grow serious and said "Then tell me, Big Brother. You know i wont tell the whole kingdom about it." I then paused in silence and said "Alright... but keep this only between us and Mother's Divine Guard. No one else is to know a whisper about this." I then began explaining the SAKUI incident, told him about our long lost Father JENBU, and the sacrifice he made so Mother could escape safely so i would be born in a better place far from his reaches. As i told the story, i could see tears forming in Brother Rufus's eyes. Rufus was rarely one to cry, but a story like this would make any of Mother's children cry. When i finished explaining, i then ended by saying "The reason I've been acting like that is not just because of SAKUI.... but because i let him roam free all this time, Brother. I feel awful.... especially since he may already be latching onto us and well over ready to target our Beloved Mother. I lost Mother twice already, and i dont want to lose her a third time. The only reason im here and Mother is alive with the planet reclaimed is because of Little Sister Sephieroth. She thought everything was over because she was clueless about that monster until i told her about it. And we spent all those years just sitting here and watched without doing anything about it.... because i never said a word--and now i see i should have. Because I've let it roam free for so long, we've got it close by with little or no time to prepare for another intergalactical war with this wretched thing! Along with who knows how many enemy units all over the place!" I suddenly realized i was on the verge of tears, despite trying to force them aside. I knew exactly what i had done: left poor Mother in the face of danger. The part i felt worst about with everything was i failed to realize that until remembering what my Sister Sephieroth said: if we let him roam free, we'll all perish no matter what. If SAKUI is permitted to run wild around the cosmos, the whole kingdom is in danger. I had never felt as much regret as this. I felt tears slide down my face, my legs gave out; i fell, sitting on the floor with my face in my arms. I suddenly said "What have I done..? Mother.... im sorry..." Thats when i had another vision: i once again found myself standing back to back with Sephieroth, her wing just behind mine. I heard her say "Its ok to make mistakes, Big Brother. What matters is you do something to correct them." I heard her giggle and hold my hand from behind. I then said "Something this bad is ok? Something that was let live out there, and strong enough to destroy the whole kingdom and overthrow Mother?" I felt her hand shift gently as she held mine, and she said "Big Brother, if you keep down on yourself, it makes the wound hurt more. Do you remember what i always said, what i always did even when faced with death?" I suddenly stopped crying and the words just fell out of my mouth "Never give up.... even if it looks bleak; never give up...." I heard her giggle and say "Thats right!" I kept muttering those exact same words as the vision slowly faded and i found myself looking at Rufus again. Rufus was glancing at me, and interrupted me by asking "That was the princess, wasn't it, Big Brother?" I was startled out of my trance, then slowly stood up and answered "Yes.... it was Little Sister. I dont know how, but.... i keep having visions with her in them. Ever since i left Mako Peak, that kept happening..." Rufus then said "She probably senses that youre in trouble when you see her like that.... likewise, she ties her JENOVA cells to yours to help you in that manner." Then i asked "But why me?" Rufus said "She most likely knows you've been very troubled and wants to help rid of your scars and regrets. More than likely, she wants you to be the SOLDIER of Mother you once were so you dont have to keep living in fear. She wants to help you recover, Big Brother." I stood in silence. I knew he was right. I wanted to keep moving forward, but the SAKUI problem along with the last two failed reunions hindered me from doing that. I could tell Sephieroth knew that loud and clear. What i didn't understand was why she was connecting with me here instead of Mother. I suddenly wanted to head to Mako Reactor where she and the rest of Mother's guard rested and forget about this bad virus and everything that reminded me of SAKUI. But i also didn't want Mother to be in tears because of my pain. If i continued this sadness and regret, Mother would be hurt even worse than i am which i didn't want. I remembered the importance of emotion, connection, and how that affected us as Mother's children and even Mother herself. Suddenly, i set my tears aside and felt a powerful surge of confidence and determination; i was suddenly ready to end everything as best i could--and save Mother once and for all. I immediately said "Brother, focus on tracing the energy of the virus and do what you can to find the source. I will take Vincent and Kadaj to Little Sister and see if we can cure them." Rufus seemed surprised and said "Uh, ok! But what if i get detected?" I used my full strength to avoid breaking down again, then said "Then we'll brace for the worst and do everything we can! If we just sit back and watch, we'll be dead no matter what! This is a fight we cannot lose, Brother." Rufus smiled then said "Brother!" He didn't waste any time getting to work on the master computer. I felt Mother's presence engulf me, and had a vision of her smiling at me. I then said softly "Mother.... I'll find a way to fix everything... I promise." I suddenly had another vision with me and Sephieroth side by side, both of us extending one arm to have our hands meet side by side, an unseen wind blowing through our long silver hair in an endless white space of brilliant light. Mother's face appeared in the white space high above, smiling down at both of us.

    To be continued...