28 Syngrapha; Oceanum

Astrum Irae

Rigel soon awoke from his tribulation seeing a familiar face looking down at him.

"Hiya," she mocked.

Rigel grimaced and got up off of the ground.

"What happened to me, do you think?" he asked.

"The overdrawal of mana certainly damaged most of you, and the teleportation itself ravaged the rest. The act of squeezing a person into 2 dimensions and then rearranging them somewhere else, no matter how well it's done, will certainly mess a few things up. Humans are too complex and fragile of creatures to teleport through that method," Eureka replied.

"So teleporting is only for last-minute desperation?"

"If you do that again without me around, you will die."

Rigel nodded in response and replied, "Okay. Got it. Now, lead the way to Zephledawn. I'm getting extremely excited about the possibilities of magic now, as apparently there are other methods to teleport."

Eureka laughed and replied, "Got it, Boss. Ca~n do."

The duo turned towards the north and continued to walk through the desolate region.

After a while, Rigel spoke up. "Eureka, why are you named as such?"

Eureka ignored him for a few moments before replying, "I was blessed with my name by The One True Being. The One True Being's motives and thoughts are not ones for mere mortals such as us to ponder or question."

"The One True Being, is it?" Rigel questioned. "And who deemed it such?"

"Anyone with an iota of common sense," Eureka spat back. "The One True Being is clearly the most powerful being in the universe, and possibly older than any other."

"Sounds like blatantly presumptuous assumptions," Rigel chided. "I bet ya that God merely thought 'Eureka' sounded nice."

Eureka stopped in her tracks and spun around to face Rigel. "You dare doubt The One True Being?"

"Haha," Rigel chuckled. "Well, my dear, I think I have to. It is any being's duty to question authority. It is how we maintain our freedom and sense of self. Unquestionably following anything will only result in a 'bad end'."

"The One True Being is no mere mortal authority. The One True Being created this world and governs it aloofly."

"I challenge that line of thinking, for if it was truly aloof and created the world, there would be no way that he would 'cheat' or play a 'game', as he said previously to me."

"...The One True Being said such things to you?"

"Yes. Of that, I swear. Eureka, let me ask you, how were you enlisted under 'it'?"

"Sigh…" Eureka exasperatedly sighed and continued, "I don't know. All I know is that at some point, The One True Being told me to help guide and mentor you with some restrictions. I can only assume he created me to help you out…"

This was quite interesting news to Rigel; if God truly created Eureka from nothing- or took a mortal girl and enhanced her while taking her memories- she could very well be in the same boat as he himself.

"Well, I don't completely distrust the guy, or you. But don't forget that nothing is incorruptible. We can't possibly know his motives, and thus we cannot possibly trust him fully. Since we can't trust him, we must question him, at least a bit."

"I don't know… Just the concept of disobeying The One True Being sounds painful and treacherous to me."

Rigel took mental note of that, but did not verbally follow up.

The pair soon came across a gaping opening in the earth. Eureka approached it with mild trepidation, evidently cautious regarding the possibility of the ground collapsing.

"What's this?" Rigel called out to her.

"This, Rigel, is a dungeon." Eureka smiled happily and gestured towards the supposed dungeon.

Rigel observed it with keen interest. The opening was quite similar to the hole he fell into earlier- merely a hole on the ground. There weren't any intriguing markings or any notable signs that this hole was much different than any other.

"Are you… sure?" Rigel felt like he had to ask.

"Yes! This is where I was meant to lead you this whole time. This… this is where The One True Being wanted you to be. And now, dear Rigel, I have a question that I must ask. Do you like me?"

The sudden, bizarre question through Rigel off momentarily. "Do I what?" he managed to stammer out after a second.

"Well, this can be where I leave you. You will regain your immortality and once again be a demigod- I will return to The One True Being." A solemn aura permeated from Eureka's words. "What do you choose?"

"Hahahaha!" A mad, chaotic presence could be felt in Rigel's laughter. "Eureka, I love you. You have brought meaning to my pitiful life once more. What is this derisory immortality that you speak of? I see only decay and loneliness! I will not die regardless, of that you'll see. I hope that you will follow me into this here bitter abyss."

Rigel was not sure what had come over him, but he felt like he was releasing a load of pent up feelings.

Eureka silently looked towards the man who seemingly just declared his love for her before joyfully smiling. "Really? You mean it?"

Rigel smiled back lightly and nodded. "Let's go, shall we?"

Eureka laughed and jumped down the hole with Rigel close behind. Rigel slid down the walls, which were soft like sand yet firm like normal rock, and thus didn't hurt himself on the way down.

Upon hitting the spongy dirt ground, Rigel felt a delirious contrapositive physically permeate through his mind. The abstract, nigh-incomprehensible delusion passed and Rigel found himself in a brick room.

"...Eureka?" Rigel looked up at his female companion. She seemed to be feeling just as queasy as he at the moment.

"We, are now in the dungeon... I think," she slowly responded.

Looking around, Rigel observed intricate details carved about and around the perimeter of the room. They flowed like waves and danced and worked off of each other much like the real thing.

"Eureka, what is this on the walls?"

Eureka looked back at Rigel with a curious expression written on her face. "What's wrong with the walls?"

Rigel sighed and walked up to one of the more boisterous markings. Upon touching it, his hand wet, like he had just touched a real wave. Rigel pulled his hand away and investigated further, but there wasn't any water on his hand.

"Hmm…" he hummed.

He suddenly struck the wall with his face. The fierce contact with the brick broke Rigel's nose instantly; the marking itself did not budge.

"Rigel! What are you doing?!" Eureka shouted and ran over to him, providing a blissful healing light.

Rigel only groaned and maintained his silence.


"Sigh, there are queer markings on the wall and I was experimenting with them."

"Oh. If you say so." Eureka merely nodded along with her words and started inspecting the walls herself.

Rigel watched on for a few minutes until Eureka decided that she was done with her research.

"I don't see anything~" she whined while walking towards him.

"They're waves," said Rigel. "Beautiful, majestic creatures in their own right. You know, I used to live by the ocean when I was a kid." Rigel's eyes teared up slightly at the bittersweet memories that sentence piqued.

"Wow… The ocean. That's so cool! I've never seen it before; what's it like?" Eureka had an innocent, amazed expression on her face, which was in itself deep in imagination already, even without any of Rigel's input.

"The ocean… I've only seen one before in my memory- the Pacific. The concept of looking out in front of you and seeing nothing but water… is amazing, no? I grew dull to its wonders and sensations, just as any would, I imagine. Humans become numb to amazement and extraordinary circumstances in due time. What you may think is a wondrous, mythical thing that you want to go see, others may view as average- much like how a typical person views their own house. So, who's right then, you, the laymen, or me, the expert? Ergo, the ocean is cool. It's a bunch of water that sometimes moves. But I… I am different. The ocean represents a time period and a transition: the honeymoon of my childhood, and the end of my happiness- not the ocean. After I moved away, it all went downhill. My brother died, my parents got divorced, my mom married that stupid jackass drunk that hit me, I dropped out of college, my dog died, I got kicked out of the house, and I died. The ocean is a disgusting thing that, looking back at, I took for granted. I should have never stopped playing in the ocean. I should have drowned in the ocean 10 years before I died. I wish I… I wish I had my life back, Eureka. I loved my brother. We had so much fun playing in the ocean together. We owned bodyboards, surfboards, fins, snorkels… We would spend, during the weekend, 8 hours a day playing in the ocean. So, you ask what the ocean is like? The ocean is a false reality that lulls you into security then, when it's all said and done, stabs you in the back and ruins you. I hate the ocean, Eureka. It's the worst thing that I can imagine. I want my childhood back, Eureka, and the ocean stole it from me."

Rigel scoffed and looked at the walls.

"That's right. Fuck you."

With that, the flowing waves seemed to warp and flow in real time.

"Heh." Eureka chuckled. "You sure are miserable, huh Rigel?"

"My misery is my strength. See?"

The flowing tides spun around and around the duo before collapsing into a single point, creating a doorway in the room.

"Did you know that was the way to leave the room?" Eureka inquired.

"No. I just hate the ocean." Rigel laughed and walked through the new doorway cut out of the brick.