Pain sears through your body, your blood burning as you force yourself to take on the rest of the relics. Just a little longer , you think as you grit your teeth, refusing to scream out in pain. You have to do this for them. You’re the only one who can, and you owe it to not only your companions, but to all the other successors whom you failed to save. You know you must take on their suffering and push forward. But it hurts . It burns so terribly . Jack was right, you were at your limit, but you can’t lose yourself now. You must not frenzy like Cruz...like the queen. You couldn’t do that to your friends. You couldn’t saddle them with that pain. They’d all lost someone important, and you had to carry the hopes of those precious people who gave up everything to become successors.
Slowly, the pain subsides. The searing heat that threatened to ignite the world around it dies down to an ember, before fizzling completely. You gasp for breath, collapsing from the pain of what you’d endured. But you’d done it. It’s over now and. All that is left is for you to sit on that throne for eternity. It’s an unpleasant thought, but you know you must, and that you would never truly be alone. These precious people around you would never allow you to suffer alone. Your precious friends. You would continue to stay strong for them, no matter what.
But you’re flooded with a sense of dread. You turn, seeing the agony on the faces of your dearest companions. What is happening? Your friends all take a few steps back from you, looking on with pain and horror. You feel as though you’re floating, as though you are not in control. And you finally realize.
The queen has returned. The queen was revived through you. You want to cry, to scream out in horror, tell them to run, to get away from you. You are no longer in control. And slowly but surely, the spears of light appear, all aimed towards the group before you. You want to close your eyes, to turn away, to awaken from this nightmare. But there’s no chance of waking up. This is no land of dreams within your mind, it’s real. It’s all really happening and you want nothing more than to scream. To tell them you’re sorry.
You feel a sudden sharp pain, the tip of a blade entering your view. You recognize this blade, Enduring Crimson , and you hear Louis’ voice from behind you. No. Louis I’m so sorry. You want nothing more to hold him, reassure him, as you hear the sadness in his voice. You knew he was reliving his past, all of that suffering. He must be blaming himself for what happened to me. You know it’s not his fault, but you can say nothing to him, you can’t see him, and distantly you know what’s going to happen now. Your companions will be forced to live on...as your successors. You see Mia, trapped on that snowy peak alone thinking only of her brother. Yakumo, surrounded by flames, face contorted in sadness, remembering Emily’s smile. Jack, surrounded by sand, trying to remember the sound of Eva’s voice as she sang to him. Louis, sitting on that throne, eyes shrouded by his hair as he lives in the pain of his memories. Your friends taking on your burden. The burden you abandoned them with. The thought brings more pain than the blade sticking out of your chest. As you fall, dark blood coating the stone beneath you, you manage to whisper out a few last words. I’m sorry, my friends .