It was the end of the day and the sun was setting as two girls, Meri and Clearflower were walking along with a boy named Jyoti, Meri and Jyoti arguing about something stupid yet again.
"Meri, you've lived here for 6 months already, why the hell can't you follow the damn dress code like Clear?!" Jyoti growled.
"This body was not meant to be confined to those disgustingly conservative outfits; I swear we look like nuns." Meri complained as she pulled up her knee-high brown uniform skirt.
"First off, what body? You're flatter than wood. Second, they're meant to be conservative. If you want to flaunt your body, go to a strip club." Jyoti hissed.
"Guys please don't fight! We're supposed to be finding Lamia." Clearflower sighed as she looked through a box.
"Yeah, sure no prob Clear, considering we're good at finding people." Meri sarcastically said as she looked through a trashcan, finding a possum who hissed at her and ran off.
"Meri you shouldn't say that! It makes me want to cry that we still haven't been able to find my sons or who's been causing the disturbances for you." sniffed Clearflower.
Jyoti smacked Meri on the head, "You're supposed to support her, not bring her down. God tell me how you two are best friends."
"We were raised together and have always been together… well until Meri got kidnapped." Clearflower explained.
Jyoti snorted, "This chick kidnapped? Who would want her?"
Meri took no time in punching Jyoti in the nose, "Well, you snot-nosed brat, I was only kidnapped because I was caught off guard in my sleep. That bastard Don Thousand forced me into marriage and kept me away from seeing Clear and my Barian world. Now that dick bag is sleeping with mutated, acid-addicted fishies in the Sea of Ill Intent for his little act."
"Oh Lamia where art thou my precious kitty-cat!" wailed Clearflower.
It was at that very moment when a scream was heard in the distance.
"RYOGA! GET IT AWAY!"
Ryoga sighed and was about to shoo it away when he saw a weird crystal on its collar.
"What's up Ryoga?" Yuma asked.
"Hey, is it me or is this cat staring right at Astral?" Ryoga asked as he further examined the crystal which tingled at his fingertips.
Yuma looked over at Astral, noting that he was staring at the cat. "This is getting weird."
The short haired black and light orange brindle cat turned its greenish yellow eyes at Rei. "Meow?" it mewed questionably.
Rei began to sweat a bit as he felt it knew something he was trying to hide.
"Rei, are you okay?" Kotori questioned as Rei shook his head.
"I'm fine." he laughed nervously as the cat walked towards him. He stepped back.
The cat then began clawing his legs. Rei began panicking and tried to shake the cat off, "Uwah! Get off please!"
"Shingetsu!" Yuma yelled out.
"Meow!" the cat growled as it GLARED at Rei.
"Maybe it wants you to carry it." Cathy calmly suggested.
"CARRY IT?!" Rei shouted out.
"You're not afraid of cats too ura?" Tokunosuke sighed.
"N-no not at all!" Rei yelled.
"Are you saying it's a bad thing?!" Rio seethed.
"NO WAY!" Tetsuo covered Tokunosuke's voice.
"Can this get any weirder, eh Astral…Astral?" Yuma asked as he noticed Astral was staring at something or someone in front of him.
"Who could they be?" Astral cautiously said to himself.
"HEY THAT'S MY CAT!" yelled a girl with silver grey hair and crimson red highlights before she tackled Rei, which the cat avoided by jumping to Kotori.
"YUMA-KUN HELP!" Rei pleaded as he landed on the grass with Clearflower atop of him.
"Dammit Clear, can't you save the flirting 'til after we find your cat?!" Meri scowled.
"You mean this one?" Kotori asked.
"Exactly that one deary," Meri said with crossed arms and closed eyes, "Now let's find it."
"We already found it you nitwit." Jyoti said in an annoyed tone.
Meri opened her eyes and blinked in a surprised manner before she began examining the cat, until it scratched her. "OUCH! Damn cat, yep it's definitely it." The cat scratched her yet again.
As Kotori handed the cat over to Clear, she gasped as she looked over Kotori's shoulder, "Astral?"
Astral tilted his head in confusion. "You can see me?"
"Well you're as bright as a street light." Meri remarked.
"You would know what a street light looks like." Jyoti backhandedly said.
"As would you since that's the only place you would ever get laid." Meri grinned triumphantly.
"Astral is that really you?" Clearflower asked with tears in her eyes.
"I'm indeed Astral, but who are you?" Astral asked.
Clearflower jumped off of Rei leaving the cat on his stomach, who looked quite content there, hugged Astral and sobbed. "Astral it's really you! I finally found you after all this time!"
"Astral, who is she?" Yuma asked.
"I don't know, nor do I know how she's able to see or touch me for that matter." Astral coldly stated.
"I'm his mother." Clearflower explained before she glowed and changed into an Astral being that looked similar to Astral save for her eyes and hair.
Meri shielded her eyes, "Great, trying to blind me is she? Well two can play this game sister!"
"You don't mean you're… too late." Jyoti sighed as Meri had turned into her Barian form, dark maroon skin with a deep red adorned dress with her lapis above her heart.
"BARIAN!" Rei shouted fearfully as Meri raised her brow.
"I'll just go out on a limb and say you have amnesia too. That or alzheimer's." Meri spoke through her mouthless form.
"Really Meri? I wasn't trying to blind you, I just glowed brighter than usual because I finally found one of my long lost sons." sighed Clearflower.
"Yeah right, you were trying to upstage me, the Barian Goddess, Meri." Meri scoffed.
"More like Barian drag queen." Jyoti coughed.
"I could destroy you if I wanted to." Meri threatened.
"It would be better than having to keep on living with you." Jyoti sighed.
"Just what the hell is going on here?!" Ryoga shouted as he and Yuma stood in front of the others in a defensive way.
Meri's eyes twitched. "I get you have alzheimer's but that doesn't give you the right to scream at your mother, NASCH!" Meri growled as she bonked Ryoga on the head.
"Nasch?! ... I mean, who's Nasch." Rei questioned.
Meri turned around and glared at Rei, "Not so forgetful now are we, Vector? I should have you both grounded for this and for dragging poor Merag into this!" Meri hissed.
"What in the world do you mean?!" Ryoga angrily asked.
Meri sighed and returned to her human form, "You'll figure it out eventually."
"Hey we shouldn't fight Meri; we should be happy we found some of our children and that they're safe and sound." Clear tried to placate.
"I'm not the one who forgot all about their Barian lives." Meri scowled.
"But Meri aren't you happy that they're okay? Remember how you felt when you could no longer sense them in Barian world." Clear tried again.
"I'd be happier if they had manners, but then again, that's on my part. So hurry up and get your son back so we can start looking into the matter of the little psychos in my world. They're bugging the hell out of me." Meri said.
"But Meri I haven't even found Darku! I want to find both of my boys!" Clear said with a clear steely tone.
"Then we'll have to add that on to the other matter. I seriously doubt we can wait on them anymore."
With those words, the sky turned dark and in the far distance, a black light descended onto the earth and Meri's fears were confirmed.
"It's them. Șapte păcătoși, the seven sinners," Meri shuddered before turning to the others. "Listen, the Barians are not your enemies, rather that evil energy is. Be cautious."
"No I thought we had more time until they came!" panicked Clear, who turned back to her human form and looked at Astral as she grabbed the ring on her left pointer finger, whispering, "Ass kicker," before it shape shifted into a wand. She waved it over him and turned him human with clothes already on, thankfully.
Astral was speechless, as were the others. "W-what?!"
"Clear you idiot! Couldn't you tell that he could mask his energy simply by going inside that boy?!" Meri pointed to Yuma.
"Um nope, sorry but my mother instincts kicked in and screamed, "PROTECT YOUR SON YOU IDGIT!" so I listened." Clearflower sheepishly explained.
Meri smacked her own face with her hand and sighed, "Whatever, but we need to get the hell out of here. You guys should probably do the same, and remember that the Barians are NOT your enemies!" Meri reminded as she began darting away from Jyoti and Clear.
"Did she just leave us?!" Jyoti growled.
"Yeah she kinda does that; at least she isn't using me for bait again." Clearflower laughed nervously.
Jyoti had already gone ahead, shouting as he did, "COME BACK YOU TRAITOROUS BITCH!"
"Well good bye and take care; if you need to contact us I'm sure Lamia can find you. Take care my sweet son and you, I'm sorry for tackling you and thank you for finding Lamia, good bye!" Clearflower fare welled with Lamia on her shoulders before running after the other two.
And so began the prelude to the war.