Xorsis : Invasion\Lost
Chapter 22: A Piece of Bread
In the darkness of night, three shadows sneaked in through the borders. No one noticed them, no one heard them exchanging any words. In the darkness, as if the three silhouettes were three ghosts, hidden from the view.
Nia couldn't help notice that the guards at the borders didn't have those bands like the Tokreians they knew. It was a relief, but it also made her curious.
It could be simply because those devices were for communication between higher ranking officials, but it was merely speculation. But it was still worth thinking about.
As they walked in, the view of Tokrei awed Nia.
She didn't know what she had expected.
But it looked entirely different from Dottonex City or Cridelford.
The roads were broad, clean, and there were street lights everywhere. It was kind of difficult to pass through without being caught - the guards were very alert. They even had dogs.
The houses were quite big and tall, and they were colourful, beautiful ones. There were signs at every turn in the roads, pointing ways towards the capital and indicating steps from it.
By the time they reached the capital, dawn was almost there.
The city seemed normal - in the standards of Tokrei of course, except there was a huge tower in the middle of the city with a glowing light at the top of it. Some other structures were around it too. They seemed very… definitely not prehistoric, but very futuristic? Yet there was an old look about them.
Tokrei fashion, Nia thought, maybe instead of building monuments, they like building glowing towers.
Not that she’d get what could be the point of it.
But even though it was very modern, Tokrei had smaller forest areas as well. The three of them entered such an area, and formed a temporary base.
The next morning, no one noticed in the bustling city that three different people were among the crowd too. Tokrei was very diverse in races, as Nia noticed from the way people looked. Though, they all spoke in the same language - Tokreian.
The language was different, and the society looked more modern, more polished - but at the core of it, it was no different from Dottonex. Children and adults walking to schools and their jobs, or idle people gossiping in tea-shops. The city image was familiar to Nia, yet it was different.
A festival was going to happen in Tokrei, apparently. There were colourful decorations on the streets, and more lights were being fixed on trees and buildings. Nia couldn’t help feeling bad for arriving there at such a time.
At around eleven in the morning, they were standing in front of the national museum of Tokrei. They noticed the building last night when they were making their way through Tokrei. They didn’t know the extent of protections Tokrei would take - and therefore, they weren’t eager to sneak in last night. Instead, they decided to go in as proper visitors. Due to the festive mood, there was already a crowd outside the museum, and there weren’t many problems getting inside the museum. But still, they split up - Nia and Aez entered earlier, together, and Mersoy walked in a bit later.
“We’re in for an interview with Dr. Morgan Jr,” the journalist announced energetically in his microphone, ushering the camera, “We all know, all viewers are very much excited about this! Today, Dr. Morgan Jr. will be answering all the questions we’ve been asking for years, finally there’ll be a reply to them. And so, again, to let viewers know, we’re in for an interview with the head of Quasar, Dr. Morgan Jr…”
The other man, sitting on the chair, coughed mildly. He was sitting quietly all the while as the journalist announced his words. Morgan always found the media to be extremely annoying, but fixing Quasar’s image was now in his hands. Unless this interview went well, there’d be no future - neither for Quasar, nor for Tokreians.
He was wearing a black suit with white garments inside. Quasar’s ‘phi’ shaped golden badge was shining on the left pocket.
It was only after all these years, that he managed to unify Quasar. No matter what - he’d have to win today.
The journalist sat down on a chair opposite to him. He flashed a smile at him.
“To let the viewers know, the head of the re-unified Quasar agency, Dr. Morgan Jr. is here with us today, and he’ll be answering the questions- some of which we’ve had for decades. After his father, Dr. Morgan passed away, Quasar was in chaos, but in one year, Dr. Morgan Jr has shown immense prowess by unifying them.”
The cameras flashed, the lights were almost blinding.
“Mr. Morgan Jr. We all know about the things your father Dr. Morgan had done, but he provided us no explanation - precisely because Quasar was outside Tokrei’s government.
“But now that it’s not the case anymore, and the government has the ability to break Quasar in an instant, it’d be relevant to discuss Quasar's goals in the first place. And what does Quasar intend to do now that it’s re-unified?”
So, it begins.
“Quasar was never about killing people as you assume. Our goal was always a simple one - to overcome the boundaries on its way to reach the end goals - to go back to our homeplanet, Tokrei. But in the midway, we’ve had too many troubles. We Tokreians live 200+ years, and we aren’t prone to diseases like the ‘humans’ of this planet. Overpopulation has led us to more problems than we could imagine. Despite being so close to immortality, we need food and supplies. Unfortunately, the land the Elites had chosen - might have been full to the brim with supplies, but now, it’s almost coming to an end. Once we run out of supplies, we won’t be able to go back to our home planet.
“On the other hand, there are only 100 years remaining. After that, our home planet will collapse.
“When my father was in charge, Quasar wanted to go north, impart knowledge to the local people, and in exchange, take their supplies. The major nations - Crilania, Dottonex, Nevidilandi, Pensylan, Estoyca - were all rich in supplies.
“But there was one thing my father didn’t realize instantly. When we, Tokrei, had already progressed so far, those countries were still savage and stuck in the middle ages.
“We, Quasar, prepared our groups of scholars and sent them north. But our best group of scholars were slaughtered in the most gruesome way possible in Crilania. All because, our scholars, or we Tokreis in general, weren’t able to treat the queen’s cancer.
“Instead of praising the attempts of the scholars, they killed them. It just shows you how savage those nations were. We Tokreians live long, but we don’t age fast. So our twenty-year-old scholars looked like ten-year-olds - and they didn’t hesitate to kill them.”
“Mr. Morgan Jr. Do you mean to say that the following actions of Quasar are justified?”
“Justified or not, that’s up the people to decide,” Morgan said, “Because if the middle ages still continued in the north, we wouldn’t be able to communicate with them - forget about supplies. Quasar believed in one ideal. For the greater good, sometimes we have to become evil ourselves.
“But at least, Tokrei won’t share that burden. And so, altering the spelling and meaning of ‘Xorssis’ - which meant homecoming, as named by the Elites - we came up with ‘Xorsis’ - which means to purge evil. To get rid of those savages.
“You see, the Elites had already messed up with the land long before our civilisation began. We all know the story of the Fiend genus - as commonly known - and the results. The battle with sample AUR1. In the long battle, Quasar won, but AUR1 or the other fiends weren’t found. But at least we found something. The “forest spirit”. We still don’t have evidence that the ones before us - the Elites created it, but it was good enough for us.
“Yes. We, Quasar, provoked wars. But our plan wasn’t to provoke a third war. We expected in the second war, Crilania would be finished off. But unfortunately, things didn’t go our way. We all know what happened next. Randomly enough, the other nation, Nevidilandi disappeared.”
“I hope you’re aware of the people’s opinions of such actions, Mr. Morgan.”
“Unfortunately, all these plans were my father's, and it was he who took action,” Morgan sat straighter, “I couldn’t have stopped him. But now that he’s dead, the re-unified Quasar will correct his mistakes. We’ll go north to forge alliances, and get supplies. Before that, we’d have to retrieve the clone of the scroll. It bears the Tokreian language - although ancient - it wouldn’t take long for people to make connections.
“Yes. I agree with people that my father has made mistakes, and Quasar deeply apologises for that. But allow us to rectify our mistakes. Soon, we’ll have all the supplies - the 40% mark that has been there for the last hundred years - it’ll go up. We’ll go back to our homeplanet, Tokrei, soon.”
The interview was over. The journalists left. Morgan walked to the window, looking outside. There were so many things to view, but only one thing grabbed his attention.
The tower of the capital.
On the top of the tower, a pink light was always shining.
Xenos - the seed of knowledge.
When the Elites arrived in this world, they imparted all the knowledge in that seed. All the knowledge that could be gained was already there in that seed - but they couldn’t reach it unless they progressed. That’s why, even though they had the cure for cancer now, back then, the scholars still couldn’t treat the Crilanian queen - because that knowledge wasn’t available to them back then.
Morgan looked at the black band under his sleeves. It was a recent research item. According to modern Tokreian scientists, there were possible ways to extend Xenos’s signal. Soon, they’d be able to communicate in Tokrei from the south. The research was going on, and it would at least take ten more years till the communication bands could be usable. But it was one of the best inventions.
Morgan had agreed to wait.
He had assassinated his own father just to stop his awful plans from making the situation even more complicated. He willingly let Quasar break, and re-unified them. All to remove any suspicions that he was involved in his father’s death.
It was his turn to make things right.
He couldn’t let anything go to waste this time.
This time, he’d have to succeed in getting the supplies from them. The world who would understand them - it was finally here, though in chaos currently.
Ten years more, and then he’d go north. He’d correct all the mistakes his father made, and make the original project - Xorssis, a success.
Morgan didn’t know that instead of ten, it’d take thirteen years, but finally in 1966, the Tokreian ships were arriving in the Cridelford ports.
Aez looked at Nia. He was absorbed in all the information in the museum that he didn’t notice how long Nia was calling.
But there was a change in the tone of her voice. That surprised him.
“Can we get some fresh air?” she asked, pleadingly.
Well, all those things we’ve just learned - they are a lot to take in indeed, Aez thought, as they moved to a balcony.
That must be why she’s so anxious.
“Breathe in, and out,” Aez said softly to Nia.
Nia did so. A few moments passed in silence.
“Aez. I think I’ve done something wrong. I have to tell you about it,” she whispered.
Aez slid his fingers over hers. “It’s okay, take your time,” he said softly, “don’t worry. Soon, we’ll be out of here. Don’t-”
“When I was passing through the village at night, a child was there, crying,” Nia started. “He said he didn’t have any food. He was crying…
“And I… I gave him the piece of bread I had.”
Aez felt a chill run down his spine.
Dr. Morgan Jr’s interview.
That child… might not have been a child, after all.
A twenty-year-old Tokreian could look like a ten-year old.
Aez was alarmed.
“Even if something happened to me, Aez,” Nia said slowly, “I’ll want you to leave me and go on. Don’t… don’t do anything stupid for me,” she was tearing up now, and wiping her eyes with her free hand constantly, “I’ve done worse things… If I considered your dreams before joining the army, we’d have to face nothing like this today… Yes, if there was anyone who broke your dreams, it was me all along… I’m the one guilty of this.
“And so, Aez, I’m sorry, for all these. I never meant for this to happen, you know? I’m a terrible person. I’m not strong like you or Mersoy. I’m just someone… who wanted to be next to the person she loves, I guess… I’ve always wanted to be just at your side, Aez… and so, no matter what, don’t come back for me, because that’s how I think I’ll pay for what I’ve done…”
“You stupid girl.”
From the trees, Mersoy noticed the crying boy, but left him alone. I walked in the shadows, but didn’t come forward.
It was you only, who’d come forward and help anyone in distress.
Because you’re really a kind person, Nia.
“No,” he said through clenched teeth, “I’d never…”
A loud siren started ringing somewhere. A red laser light fell on Nia, lighting up her white face.
The people around them looked alarmed and backed away. There were loud voices, screaming in fear. There was a distant announcement, though Aez couldn’t hear it. He could only hear footsteps. Footsteps rushing at them.
After all this time, the Tokreians had successfully found out the locations of the three assassins of Dottonex.