It was the first time in many years that their universe had known peace like this. Luther was gone and the research team in 4D Space were going to keep the Eternal Sphere safe from any more monsters like the Executioners or Convictors. Aldian was gone, Vendeen was gone and the Federation had very few resources left to use. The interplanetary superpowers were diminished and so that war was over. Now it was time for the team to part ways as they all had different paths towards the future.
Cliff and Mirage decided to return home to the Klaus system for a while, take some time out from the chaos that their lives had attracted. Maria decided that the Diplo needed some time to be upgraded and made stronger so she decided to go to Moonbase for this to happen so she could read more about Dr Leingod's field. Peppita was going with her to meet up with the Rossetti Troupe there. Adray and Albel were headed back to Elicoor II and all that was needed was to decide where Fayt and Sophia were going.
"Fayt, we're going back to Earth aren't we?" Sophia asked.
Fayt looked down at the table they were sitting at, his mind racing with the desire to be anywhere else but Earth right now. His mother was waiting and by now she would know the truth; that his father was dead. He was still grieving himself and he wasn't sure that he could stand to see her grief as well. He just didn't want to go back to Earth, he wanted to return to Elicoor instead. He'd spent so long on that planet it was starting to feel like a second home. But he also knew it would be cowardly to just send Sophia back alone. Yet, he felt he should be honest now whilst he had the chance to be, without upsetting anyone by being resentful if he'd gone back home.
"You can, Sophia but... I don't want to return to Earth," Fayt admitted.
"What? Why?" Sophia asked, blinking. "Is it because of what happened to your father?"
Fayt nodded. "A little bit but... I just wouldn't feel at home there any more. I want to start again somewhere else. Somewhere I've actually worked hard to become a better person. I... I'm going to go back to Elicoor II."
Albel looked around with mild surprise. "You're going to stay with us? Why would you do that fool? I've seen your worlds now. They have more excitement than my world."
Fayt looked to Albel. "You find excitement in war, there is no war now."
"Exactly why I am going home" said Albel. "But I would have thought you'd have somewhere better to be." He folded his gauntlet hand around his katana.
Fayt shook his head. "Elicoor is where I want to be, Albel. You'll just have to get used to it."
Cliff frowned. "Are you sure, Fayt? We're all going to be off doing our own things. We won't be able to come and get you if you change your mind."
Mirage smiled. "I think Fayt's made his mind up. Besides we can still come and visit."
Fayt nodded. "Peppita once said to me that I didn't look like the kind of guy who's done an honest day's work in his life-"
"You've not done an honest day's work in your life, fool," smirked Albel.
Cliff looked at the Glyphian in annoyance. "Shut it, you."
"Make me, maggot," retorted Albel.
Peppita looked a little sad. "Is that why you're staying? Cos of what I said? I'm really sorry if I upset you..." she said walking over to Fayt who simply smiled and laughed at her affectionately.
"No I'm glad you said it. When we were all on Elicoor we actually helped out a lot and I don't know about you Cliff but I certainly felt good working towards something. I want to go back and stay a part of that."
"It's not going to be as simple as that, fool." Albel warned scathingly. "Do you really think people are going to accept a maggot who's caused all the trouble you have?"
"Oi! I'm warning you!" Cliff growled at Albel.
"Oh you're warning me, I'm terrified" Albel muttered.
"I think the Queen would be happy to let Fayt work in Aquaria" said Adray gruffly whilst giving Albel an evil look.
"Besides any country that can stomach you can easily handle Fayt," Cliff added snidely.
Albel's eyes flashed dangerously. "Say that again, worm."
Fayt sighed. "Oh stop it you two, this is getting boring."
Albel straightened up. "Which is exactly how you're going to find life here. Still I suppose you could always track me down. I'd be willing to give you a good fight."
Fayt smiled a bit. "I might hold you to that. But you do know I could one day get control over my abilities and cheat."
"Bah, I'll still beat you hands down, maggot," said Albel smirking even more so.
Mirage looked to the others. "So is everyone's destination completely decided now?"
Fayt nodded. "Yeah" he looked at Sophia. "I'm sorry to leave you alone"
Sophia smiled. "Don't worry I'll go home and look after Aunt Ryoko." She looked saddened. "Does this mean we're never going to see each other again Fayt?" she asked. "And your mother?"
Cliff clapped his hand against his fist. "We'll make sure he sees you and Ryoko again. We'll take you with us when we decide to visit this clown."
Fayt laughed. "Thanks Cliff. There we go Sophia, we'll see each other again. But... can you still tell my mother that I'm sorry."
Sophia nodded smiling again. "Of course. I'm sure she will understand. All young people eventually move out." She told him sincerely but then added. "But not always to a different planet". Fayt, Cliff, Mirage and Maria chuckled at that.
Maria walked up to Fayt. "It was nice to meet you Fayt and thank you for your help."
Fayt nodded at Maria. "It was great to meet you too."
Maria turned to Mirage. "I'll go tell Marietta to take us to Elicoor II first." She walked off towards the bridge of the Diplo.
The goodbyes took longer than expected but before long Fayt, Albel and Adray were stood outside the Sacred Royal City of Aquios as the Diplo flew away from the planet. Fayt looked up at the sky a little sadly but then shook his head.
"Too late for regrets now, fool. You've made your bed now you lie in it," Albel remarked nastily.
Adray turned around. "I suggest you get going, young rascal before I send you to Airyglyph by air."
Albel sneered at Adray. "You beat me? Bah!"
Fayt shook his head. "It's alright, I don't really care anyway. I should probably go and find Nel and see if she can help me out."
Adray nodded. "I'm heading to Arias to see Clair but if I see Nel I'll send her your way."
Fayt bowed his head. "Thanks Adray. I'll see you around sometime."
Adray smiled. "I look forward to the next time you're in Arias." He started stalking off in the direction of Peterny leaving Albel alone with Fayt.
"Heh, I'm going to return to my own lands. I trust you don't need a bodyguard to get into the city, fool?" he asked. "Some of us have work to do." He stalked off himself keeping a distance from people as he did.
Fayt watched him with a slight smile. "Bye Albel" he whispered and walked into the city.
Luckily for Fayt Nel was standing outside the palace as he approached. She raised her eyebrows at him and slowly walked down the steps to meet him. "Fayt, what are you doing here?" she asked with a serene smile. "It's good to see you again."
"Hi Nel, its good to see you too," Fayt said then stopped, looking awkwardly at the ground. "I don't know if this will be too much to ask but..."
Nel tilted her head. "What is it, Fayt?"
"I decided to stay and live on this planet. I was just wondering if you would be able to find me some work to do. Unless it's a problem after all the issues I caused Aquaria..."
Nel stared at him intently before smiling. "Come with me," she said leading him into the castle.
They approached the throne room and Fayt looked at Nel. "You're going to ask the Queen?"
Nel nodded. "Yes, I think it's a good idea to see how the land lies. But I'm sure she will not object to you living among us."
The aide Lasselle approached Nel. "What is it Nel?" he looked to Fayt with distaste. "Oh hello..." Fayt nodded in acknowledgement in response as Nel turned to Lasselle.
"Could you get us an audience with the Queen? It's important." Nel asked Lasselle quietly.
"Not more monsters surely!" Lasselle groaned.
"Not this time," Nel told him.
Lasselle sniffed a little. "I'll see what I can do." He walked into the throne room and five minutes later, reappeared. "You may enter,"
Nel and Fayt approached the throne where Romeria sat looking down at them.
"Greetings Nel and welcome to you again Fayt." Romeria said to them both. "What is it, I can do for you?"
Fayt looked at Nel who nodded at him. He turned back to the Queen. "Your majesty, I was hoping to stay on this planet and I was wondering if it would be acceptable for me to live in Aquaria."
Romeria looked surprised. "You do not wish to return to your own lands?"
"Probably because he has demolished them already," muttered Lasselle.
"Silence, Lasselle!" Romeria admonished him. "Fayt?"
Fayt looked up at the Queen. "I do not wish to return to Earth... because... it would be too painful to go back now that my father is dead."
Romeria nodded sympathetically. "I can sympathise with your situation. But will your mother not worry?"
"My mother and friend Sophia may be able to visit. I'm sure my mother would understand but if this is a problem your majesty..."
Romeria shook her head. "It is not a problem. We would be happy for you to be our guest again now that the threats have been removed and our people live in peace."
Fayt smiled in relief. "Thank you, your majesty."
"Where will you stay?" asked Romeria.
"I have enough to stay at the inn until I can find work," said Fayt.
"Nonsense, you may stay at the palace and you may dine with myself and the Crimson Blade members at mealtimes. You have done our country a great service so now we will repay the favour."
Fayt blinked. "Your highness, you don't have to-"
"You should accept my offer no matter how kind it is," smiled Romeria. "We owe you a great deal. Let us accommodate you and my servants will be happy to give you any assistance you require."
Fayt smiled and bowed. "Thank you, your majesty."
Romeria turned to Nel. "Please show Fayt to a guest room. We dine at eight."
The main dining hall was as beautiful as the rest of the palace with shimmering crystal tables and lots of windows giving the room a light airy feel. Fayt was entranced by it as he walked in before he lowered his gaze to the table itself at which sat some very familiar people. Clair Lasbard was sat there smiling at him. Next to her were two very familiar girls. Fayt smiled as he sat opposite Clair and the purple haired girl waved at him.
"Hello Fayt!" Farleen said chirpily. "We're so glad you will be staying in Aquaria."
Tynave nodded. "It is good to have you with us again," she spoke.
Clair nodded in agreement. "Welcome back to Aquaria," she said and then looked to Nel. "It almost seems like old times doesn't it? Except Cliff is not with us," she added with a smile at Fayt.
Fayt blinked as he realised something. "Clair, your father was looking for you. He's on his way to Arias," he added.
Clair smiled. "He will not have a long wait. I set out for Arias tomorrow."
Nel smiled at Fayt. "We had some good adventures around our stay in Arias didn't we?"
Fayt nodded and chuckled. "Yes chasing after you to get Tynave and Farleen back. And you thought we'd be the ones to run off," he joked.
Nel chuckled. "That is very true,"
"Not to mention depriving us of all the fun" Fayt continued to joke.
Clair smiled and opened her mouth as if to tell Nel something but Nel cut her off before she could.
"I forget how arrogant Cliff could be about his fighting skills..."
"He still is," agreed Fayt.
"Even so it was partially justified. He is an impressive fighter," Nel conceeded.
"Don't tell him that, his head's big enough," joked Fayt. He managed to catch Clair trying to engage Nel in conversation again but it failed as Nel was laughing so much. He felt kind of bad since Clair was obviously trying to talk about something important. He shot her a smile and sipped from his water trying to give her a chance to talk to Nel.
"We had a lot of good times fighting together didn't we?" Nel asked Fayt. "I missed that."
Fayt smiled at her. "So did I," but he was unable to look away from Clair's slightly saddened expression.
That night Fayt sat in his room, facing the balcony and looking out over the starry night. He glanced up at the sky. Who knew where his friends were right now? They would probably be back home. Sophia would be with his mother, Peppita and Maria on Moonbase and the others in the Klausian system. They were all starting new stages in their lives.
Finally Fayt's gaze shifted to the lands far ahead of Aquaria. That was Airyglyph territory. He couldn't help wondering if Albel was back in his own lands yet or if he was still in Peterny or Arias. The idea of him being so close sent a curious shiver up Fayt's spine. He shook his head and picked up the nearest book to read.