Sera And The Exarch And Freya

(13:25:35) Minaplo: [Hail, Solemn Exarch, who sealed away the Enemy with your own flesh.-
(13:29:24) » Join: Aline (~moc.rr.ser.yabapmat.551cfh1322356|enuzuS#moc.rr.ser.yabapmat.551cfh1322356|enuzuS)
(13:38:13) Minaplo: [The world around him had fallen away, and was lighter for it. It was no longer his problem.-
(13:38:44) » Aline is now known as Suzune
(13:39:24) Minaplo: [Instead the stars twinkled gently around him, their light both beautiful and novel, yet also familiar and comforting, like a warm bath.-
(13:41:08) Minaplo: ["And so our long nightmare is ended." Said a voice. Sitting nearby, as though on a chair (although Sera could see no such thing) was the Solemn Exarch: a beautiful human figure beyond the limitations of the physical, with golden skin, long silver hair and bright, twinkling blue eyes.]
(13:45:41) * Sept stood up straight, looked at the Exarch for a moment, and then turned to look at the stars, rubbing his hands together slowly.
(13:46:22) Minaplo: [The stars continued to gently sing their ancient song of gratitude.]
(13:51:29) Sept: "…how does this work?" Sera asked as he continued his stargazing. "Why am I not you? What am I?"
(13:52:54) Minaplo: ["You are whatever you want to be." Said the Exarch. "Every human being has been given two choices, but your second choice is a little different."]
(13:58:16) Sept: "Yeah, no shit, but you can just be you without me? That's not what I was told, and if that's not what's happening right now, I repeat my question: What am I, right now?"
(14:10:09) Minaplo: ["You are you." Said the Exarch. "Consider this: do you know how Zhang Yanmei can converse with her past lives?"]
(14:12:48) Sept: "So I'm your memory?" Sera asked, pointedly.
(14:22:37) Minaplo: ["Or I'm in yours. The point is that this isn't exactly like Yanmei's situation… But there's a comparison." Said the Exarch.-
(14:23:00) Minaplo: ["We are, more or less, in two places at once, both of us wholly ourselves whilst also being the same entity. Does this make it clear?"]
(14:24:01) Sept: "…"-
(14:24:05) Sept: "I'll let it slide for now."
(14:24:16) Minaplo: ["Good idea."-
(14:24:38) Minaplo: ["You can ask any questions you wish, but firstly I should tell you of your two choices."]
(14:25:21) Sept: "Go ahead."
(14:27:28) Minaplo: ["The first choice is the one all humans must decide upon." Said the Exarch. "It is the choice between Elisha Caine's plan, and the plan that Raphael Guillory offered you. The first sees Destiny stripped at its source- me- whilst humanity is made more perfect, more resilient, with an realised AT Field."-
(14:28:17) Minaplo: ["And Raphael's plan sees the Aegis of Azariah inscribed into the collective idea of humanity, shielding it from Destiny forever, whilst leaving its physical forms unchanged. Whichever path humanity chooses will be the path taken."]
(14:31:31) Sept: "Then, I choose Azariah's path. But you must've known that when you summoned me here."
(14:33:58) Minaplo: ["Perhaps, perhaps not. What is important is that you could choose one way or another when the time came." Said the Exarch.-
(14:34:27) Minaplo: ["Just as it is important when I inquire as to the reasons behind your decision- not out of judgment but mere curiosity, for in this, we disagree."]
(14:43:19) Sept: "I've never hated humanity, or seen them as insufficient, despite my hardships. I like humanity as it is, and I want to see more of it. I want to live in this era and not in a better one. These are… selfish reasons, of course."-
(14:46:23) Sept: "But I've also seen humanity change, already. It took some time after Impact, but change finally came. It's not a new humanity, just… one that's begun to wake up, I think."
(14:47:08) Minaplo: ["I see…"]
(14:48:39) Sept: "Your other question?"
(14:51:59) Minaplo: ["Your other choice, yes." Said the Exarch. "As you know, once Third Impact is finished, I will seal myself within a dormant state, taking with me the powers of humanity's Seed. This is to ensure humanity's freedom from Seeds. But it is also in a way a penance for some of my actions."-
(14:53:31) Minaplo: ["But… As you have realised by now, although we are the same entity, your sense of identity has grown powerful and solid, enough to be distinctly your own."-
(14:53:42) Minaplo: ["And so you have three choices."-
(14:55:23) Minaplo: <OPTIONS*, wow, prick>
(14:55:41) Sept: «3>
(14:55:49) Minaplo: ["The first is to subsume your identity within your greater spiritual home- and fully become one with the Solemn Exarch, for you and I are I and you. We will sink together into our peace and regret and remove ourselves from the circles of the world."-
(14:57:29) Minaplo: ["The second is to allow you to return to the humanity you have grown to love, in your current state as Sera de Pteres. We will still be connected- in a way, in two places at once. You will not possess the power of the Exarch, merely the power you claim for yourself."-
(14:57:39) Minaplo: ["The third… I had not considered, not really."-
(14:58:44) Minaplo: ["When I spoke with Raphael in order to release Rei Ikari's energy, he specifically requested that you be rewarded with more than entombment. Your second option would probably fulfill that… But once you died you would return to me, and we would be one again."-
(15:00:03) Minaplo: ["And so I offer you the third and most drastic option, the one that brings me a sense of sorrow." Said the Exarch. "I can, if you so wish it, take the identity of Sera de Pteres and nurture that nascent consciousness that is you."-
(15:00:23) Minaplo: ["And in so doing… Birth a new soul, a soul who is no one but Sera de Pteres."-
(15:01:25) Minaplo: ["You will no longer be the Solemn Exarch, or Elisha Caine, or any of these entities. We will lose that part of ourselves, and you will stand on your own two feet as a singular human being. You will have no destiny, no special purpose except that which you choose for yourself."-
(15:01:35) Minaplo: ["And I will miss you until the end of all things."]
(15:03:28) Sept: "…"-
(15:06:04) Sept: "I've dreamed about that for a while, haven't I? When I wasn't caught up fretting about the judgment…"
(15:07:39) Minaplo: ["Yes, you have." Said the Exarch; They smiled. "I think you will be happier for it, and I sincerely wish for that, but the most important thing is that you can choose one way or another."]
(15:18:57) Sept: "Would I still be me? Could I just… continue, with everyone?"
(15:20:12) Minaplo: ["Yes. It would be the same you who did all of those things, as opposed to a new soul who merely had your memories. It would be you."]
(15:27:35) Sept: "Could it not be?"
(15:27:49) Minaplo: ["What do you mean?"]
(15:35:19) Sept: "Could I start over? If everyone forgot about me, or…"
(15:35:42) Minaplo: ["You want to be your own person… And be a blank slate?"]
(15:36:53) Sept: "I know it seems a bit backwards, maybe, but. I'm just asking if it's possible."
(15:37:25) Minaplo: ["Yes, it is."]
(15:40:11) Sept: "What about- what happens to Longinus, now?"
(15:41:08) Minaplo: ["Longinus returns to Adam."]
(15:43:03) Sept: "I understand. They did well…"
(15:45:42) Minaplo: ["Yes." Said the Exarch. "Longinus has what Longinus wanted."]
(15:53:37) Sept: "Yeah."-
(15:54:05) Sept: "Was there anything else you wanted to talk about? I'm going to need some time to think."
(15:55:01) Minaplo: ["Delivering to you the choices was all I needed to do. You have time to think, and time to discuss with others. Any soul- every human soul, and the Angels- are available now."]
(11:03:01) Sept: "And you don't need a chat or anything?"
(11:04:36) Minaplo: ["About what?"]
(11:08:03) Sept: "I don't know, I'm not a god. I'm just making sure you're good before I, what, summon all my friend ghosts?"
(11:21:32) Minaplo: ["I am fine." Said the Exarch. "I've made whatever peace I need to make. Whatever has to be done, will be done."]
(11:23:18) Sept: "Sounds a lot like what I'd say when I wanted to talk about it."
(11:24:38) Minaplo: ["That's true."-
(11:27:53) » Quit: Minaplo (~ua.ten.tenii.nyd.28-131-941-421|olpaniM#ua.ten.tenii.nyd.28-131-941-421|olpaniM) (Broken pipe)
(11:28:11) » Join: Minaplo (~ua.ten.tenii.nyd.28-131-941-421|olpaniM#ua.ten.tenii.nyd.28-131-941-421|olpaniM)
(11:31:04) Minaplo: ["I suppose I am in a form of limbo." Said the Exarch. "This decision is about the fate of humanity, but for some, especially for some, it will be a referendum on me, whether I am trustworthy, whether I can be forgiven for my acts as a human being."]
(11:36:31) Sept: "Yeah. That sucks. Would it make you feel better if I joined you after this life?"
(11:38:42) Minaplo: ["It's possible, but I'm in two minds about it."]
(11:40:07) Sept: "Ha ha."
(11:43:55) Minaplo: ["Haha."]
(11:49:30) Sept: "I'll think about it with the others, then. I should talk with Freya. Can I do that?"
(11:50:11) Minaplo: ["Are you asking if it's possible, or are you asking for permission?"]
(11:51:13) Sept: "Permission."
(11:51:52) Minaplo: ["You never have to ask permission of me ever again."]
(11:59:57) Sept: "Great." Sera turned away from the Exarch and took a few haphazard steps in the nothingness. "Freya?"
(12:00:36) Minaplo: [… And there she was.-
(12:00:57) Minaplo: ["Hi, Sept."]
(12:01:48) Sept: "Hello," Sera said, smiling. "Um. Do you have any plans?"
(12:02:36) Minaplo: ["Oh no, are you asking me out…?"]
(12:04:04) Sept: "What's it to you if I am?"
(12:04:57) Minaplo: ["Er…"-
(12:05:43) Minaplo: ["It's just a strange place for it, that's all. We're supposed to be talking about the fate of humanity… Right?"]
(12:08:44) Sept: "Okay, we'll table that. I wanted your opinion on something, for now. If that's okay?"
(12:09:08) Minaplo: ["Sure."]
(12:15:20) Sept: "I was thinking of… of having a bakery in the northern provinces. Do you want to try that, or is there something else you'd rather do?"-
(12:15:40) Sept: "Like maybe a different city or having a real job or something. With or without me."
(12:23:49) Minaplo: [Freya was silent for a few moments- then she took a seat.-
(12:23:54) Minaplo: ["This bakery. What'll it sell?"]
(12:26:56) Sept: "Stuff that people will buy, of course. Like croissants. You've been to a bakery."
(12:36:45) Minaplo: ["Sure. But not every bakery's run by you."]
(12:42:18) Sept: "Yeah, it's a serious bakery," Sera repeated. "I don't know if it'll work out like I think, and even if it does, it's probably not forever."
(12:43:44) Minaplo: ["You'll need some startup capital."]
(12:46:53) Sept: "Well, I- I bet I could take care of that even if you didn't have millions in your back pocket."
(12:47:21) Minaplo: ["But it'd help if I did, right? After all, I control your bank accounts."]
(12:48:37) Sept: "You do. And I don't regret that one bit."
(12:48:58) Minaplo: ["Hm~" she patted the… Nothing… Next to her seat.]
(12:51:56) Sept: "You want me to sit on your weird star chair."
(12:53:51) Minaplo: ["It's not weird, and it's not mine. You can sit wherever you want."-
(12:54:00) Minaplo: ["But I'd like it if you sat next to me."]
(12:55:31) Sept: "There we go," Sera said, walked over, sat down and leaned on Freya. "It is weird, though."
(12:59:06) Minaplo: ["Is it?"]
(13:00:13) Sept: "Look, I've spent a lot of time in places like this and they are weird almost without exception. This is, too."
(13:00:44) Minaplo: ["So if you think about it, it's weird, like all the other places like this, so statistically speaking, it's normal."]
(13:01:05) Sept: "Nope."
(13:02:53) Minaplo: ["I'm right." She said, putting an arm around him.-
(13:03:14) Minaplo: ["Anyway, I'll bankroll your bakery. But I want to keep a close eye on it, in person."]
(13:09:22) Sept: "Okay, good. That settles some of it. But after the bakery, and after whatever we do or I do, I still need to figure out if I should go back to be with the Exarch or be… someone else. I don't really know what to think about it."
(13:12:43) Minaplo: ["Someone else? Explain a little more?"]
(13:17:09) Sept: "You know, if I die, I'm gonna go be a small part of Elisha, or the Exarch, right. But I could be- apart, I don't want to say free. But then my experiences wouldn't help them, and - well, one Sera is probably enough, honestly."
(13:21:00) Minaplo: ["Alright, wait. Yes, if you die, you'll rejoin the Exarch… But the Exarch knows how to make you independent? Yourself?"]
(13:21:55) Sept: "Yeah."
(13:24:43) Minaplo: ["Do you want that? Don't worry about anyone else, just you wanting things. Do you want it?"]
(13:31:00) Sept: "But if we're-"
(13:34:56) Minaplo: ["Nope."]
(13:39:03) Sept: "…"-
(13:43:39) Sept: "Who wouldn't want that? I don't know what the hell I would do with even the one life, but I know myself well enough that it won't be- enough, whatever that is."-
(13:44:32) Sept: "And the only thing I know about people I've yet to be is they'll all look back and wonder how I could be this lost. That's how it always goes."
(13:46:26) Minaplo: ["Is that such a bad thing?"]
(13:49:37) Sept: "I don't know. It is terrifying, though."
(13:56:02) Minaplo: ["Terrifying enough to make you not want it?"]
(14:05:02) Sept: "…no, probably not, huh."
(14:07:05) Minaplo: ["Yeah, I think not."]
(14:11:08) Sept: "I feel like I'd be taking a secret back door out of the whole thing."
(14:11:57) Minaplo: ["A postern."]
(14:15:31) Sept: "…like in the Bastille?"
(14:15:44) Minaplo: ["Like in the Bastille."]
(14:16:54) Sept: "Well, that's fine, then," Sera said, with a sense of finality.
(14:17:27) Minaplo: ["Yep, it is."]
(14:24:49) Sept: "So I'll see you after all this, then?"
(14:28:28) » Quit: Reiska (||esireC) (Ping timeout: 181 seconds)
(14:40:58) Minaplo: ["Of course." Said Freya. "I have some things I want to do in the long run, but working with you on a bakery for a few years, at least… Sounds really, really nice."]
(14:43:56) Sept: "I'm happy to hear that. What else do you want to do?"
(14:44:14) Minaplo: ["Well, I still have Thruster."]
(14:46:28) Sept: "…right. You want to take over the world?"
(14:50:37) Minaplo: ["No, I'll leave that to Yanmei. I just want to make a really good business and get into space explo."]
(14:50:46) Sept: "That sounds fun."
(14:51:28) Minaplo: ["Maybe I can set up a bakery in space."]
(14:54:08) Sept: "…difficult."
(14:57:37) Minaplo: ["Blue's gonna set up a bar."]
(14:59:24) Sept: "Blue already has a bar, dummy."
(15:00:11) Minaplo: ["Yeah, but if he can manage it…"]
(15:02:28) Sept: "So what, my bakery's going to be a trial run for your true passions?"
(15:05:24) Minaplo: ["Nah. How hard can a bakery be? You bake some bread, butter some brioche, scrounge up some sausage rolls and watch the dough pour in."]
(15:06:59) Sept: "Ha ha," Sera sincerely laughed.
(15:08:16) Minaplo: ["But no, I'm not sure. Work on my business, spend time with my friends. I suppose I should get married, have children… Work on rehabilitating the Caine name, maybe, but I'll let Ezra handle that. I think Solheim's fine."]
(15:09:39) Sept: "It is. De Pteres is a bit weird, but it's okay to break the ice."
(15:11:02) Minaplo: ["That reminds me, I just thought of something."]
(15:11:29) Sept: "What is it?"
(15:17:41) Minaplo: ["If you're gonna be your own soul, you won't be Ginevre's… Soulmate-thing anymore, so you'll be -truly- free to start your own relationships."]
(15:18:22) Sept: "I've always been free to start relationships!"
(15:19:46) » Join: Reiska (||esireC)
(15:23:14) Minaplo: ["Yeah, but, it was weird before."]
(15:26:56) Sept: "Yeah, okay. Was that all you wanted to say?"
(15:27:27) Minaplo: ["Maybe, I dunno."]
(15:30:28) Sept: "Well, you can date now too. So there."
(15:35:50) Minaplo: ["What do you mean 'now'?"]
(15:39:34) Sept: "You don't need to worry about me anymore. Or lying low. I would've scared anyone off, for sure."
(15:40:47) Minaplo: ["I'm engaged already."]
(15:43:48) Sept: "…"-
(15:43:59) Sept: "What, since when?"
(15:45:43) Minaplo: ["Well, it was long, hard work, trying to find de Orleans. Malachi and I had a lot of time…"]
(15:47:38) * Sept paused, again.-
(15:47:41) Sept: "I think you're lying."
(15:49:49) Minaplo: ["Damnit. Yes. Sorry, I would never let Malachi touch me."]
(15:57:38) Sept: "I see right through you…"
(15:58:30) Minaplo: ["Well then, smarty, if you know me so well, recommend me someone."]
(16:01:02) Sept: "I don't know other people so well, do I?"
(16:01:52) Minaplo: ["Recommend me a cutie then."]
(16:06:27) Sept: "W-what? Edgar? I don't know what a cutie looks like."
(16:07:22) Minaplo: ["I dunno, like Isaiah or Alphonse, but not taken."]
(16:10:55) Sept: "Oh, that kind of cutie. I'll… keep an eye out?"
(16:11:05) Minaplo: ["Thanks."]
(10:27:56) Sept: "Okay," Sera said, standing up. "I'm gonna go out and tell Exarch my decision, and look for soulmates for you based on their appearance alone. I'll see you in the new world?"
(10:28:55) Minaplo: ["Okay, Sept."]
(10:30:36) Sept: And Freya was gone as Sera went searching for the Solemn Exarch once more, taking a moment's detour to think over everything one more time.
(10:40:11) Minaplo: [And, of course, the Exarch was there.]
(10:41:18) Sept: "Hey. I've made my decision. Guess you know that."
(10:44:12) Minaplo: ["What is it?"]
(10:46:37) Sept: "I want to be independent of you."-
(10:48:19) Sept: "I'm worried it'll look like I'm getting off easy, or you are, by still having agency out there. And I'm worried I'll do something that hurts mankind, again. But of course I want to… learn from my mistakes and keep trying to do better. And I understand I won't be able to do that in this new world with just one life to live. I want to do more."
(10:48:48) Minaplo: [The Exarch smiled.]
(10:49:26) Sept: "That also means you don't get to learn from them the same way. And… I don't know what that's going to mean for us."
(10:50:02) Minaplo: ["By the time I wake up, I won't have to have learned."]
(10:54:31) Sept: "Alright. So… that's my decision. Do you have any advice for me?"
(10:56:00) Minaplo: ["What are you most worried about?"]
(10:58:29) Sept: "Finding a purpose after this one is done, I guess."

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