Here’s the post I promised about the continuation of Xanatos;Deception. This time I’d like to get more into detail about the “main” character of the series. As anyone that has followed my Xanatos series knows, the main male is always a John. Xanatos;Possibility had a John Smith, Xanatos;Rebellion had a John Titor, and Xanatos;Deception has a John Rolfe. I try to always use an existing name of John within these stories and have succeed thus far. Smith references the name given to any average man in English-speaking countries. Titor is about the supposed time traveler that appeared on the internet over a decade ago. And Rolfe is the English explorer that married Pocahontas.

Getting into the heart of the story. 1st’s Fate is, at its core, a love story. The main character is John Rolfe, later known as 1st, and the main female is 7th, later known as Karenn. Anyone who has read my 2nd’s Reflection article may see the semblance in the numerical names here. Well that is to show that the main characters of the nine-arcs of Deception have numerical names. I don’t want to delve too much into the global story of the arcs, so I’ll try to keep focus on 1st’s Fate.

Here’s my Google Docs entry about Deception. I’m only going to keep this open for a little while, but I’ll post excerpts here and there whenever I see fit to. I mainly concentrated on the ending (as I did with Possibility) and only wrote a crappy rushed synopsis to rush readers there. I want to go back and redo the beginning and middle of 1st’s Fate down the road, but here is the crappy synopsis.

John Rolfe awoke one day to discover that his world was not real. The weeks would repeat themselves and only he would remember the events of the week before. He sought a way to escape this wicked realm and along the way meet a few people that also retained their memories.
First there was York, a slightly older man that had seen much of the world. Then there was Karenn, she was a lovely girl that had met John under quirky circumstances. And finally Senne, another memory keeper, was leading a group of survivors to find the key to freeing the world from the endless loop.
Over countless repeating weeks, John and Karenn teamed together to find the key but to no avail. Throughout these adventures, the two grew closer and closer until John confessed his feelings. Karenn gladly accepted and the two became an official couple. Though the world around them seemed to slowly drift into an endless loop, they enjoyed the Spring of their lives.
Soon after, Senne called for their assistance and with the remaining memory keepers they stormed the vault that was thought to hold the key. Many lost their lives and when they finally reached it, the object seemed to release a paralyzing miasma to everyone that came into contact with it. John discovered that miasma didn’t affect NPCs, those that did not retain their memories from the loop. This led him to another disturbing discovery. Senne was immune to it as well and realizing this, he questioned Senne, who would reveal his identity as cause of the loop.
Knowing John’s hot-headed nature, Senne offered him a chance to end everything, a duel to decide the fate of the world.

As is typical of our protagonist, John lets go of reason and accepts this duel. His main concern is Karenn’s heart, which he believes Senne trampled on by giving her a false hope while being the cause of it all. He fights to the best of his abilitiy, but loses his cool mid-fight which gives Senne the advantage. To everyone’s surprise, Karenn takes the final blow for Senne, which sparks a realization within him.

Time had stopped.
The sunset, the sound of the gentle breeze, the soft meadow, and the slightly cold weather.
We were both on a porch, our hands clasped together and her head on my shoulder. We gazed on as the clouds drifted by. Then the stars began to appear one by one, twinkling in the sky. But just as I reached out to grasp this dream, this lost reality, the world began to move once again.

Though a bit artsy, that excerpt is to symbolize the lost future. Because at that moment that she took the blow, the future between John and Karenn was no longer meant to be. I write abit about John’s delerium as he gives up on life without her for the next few paragraphs, but the highlight is this:

“To escape this false reality.”
What a stupid and careless thing to say. I hadn’t understood anything at all. If we are here and our hearts are here and if we are living and feeling these emotions, isn’t this reality in itself?

A philosophical question if you will. If you know that the reality you are living in is fake, do the feelings and relationships that you experience within it make it real? The question can thereby be simplified as asking what can be considered reality?

John then makes a last, thoughtless swing at Senne, which leaves him open to a mortal stab from Senne’s blade.

I stared at the blade buried inside my body. My mind no longer thought of anything. All that was left was the empty resignation that the world had ended.
From the edges of my blurring vision, I could see the blood gushing out of my body. I closed my eyes hoping that the image of her smile would resurface as my mind went completely blank. But before everything had faded away I felt a surge of energy within me. I felt as though from a place beyond my understanding that I was not completely done yet. I lunged forward with everything I had. The blade that had been piercing my body completely went through it.  With the last feeling in my arm, I took my shattered blade and thrust it into Senne.
My eyes opened as wide as they could. I could still see Senne, a surprised expression on his face.
For a moment it seemed that we simply stood there and then both of our bodies fell backwards. His expression of surprise had already disappeared – a soft, peaceful smile had taken its place.
Having lost all strength, I simply laid there. York and the rest of them, freed from the miasma, rushed over to my side. I could no longer hear them and the frantic expressions on their faces began to blur as my vision faded. At last only the sky remained and with the last of my life, I said my final words.
“The dream has ended.”

 And there it is, the finale of the arc. 1st does make a return later, as does 7th. Chronologically this is the 1st of the nine arcs and takes place before 7ths arc, how will I explain 1st and 7th being alive in the later arcs? wait and see (though you can imagine the crummy excuses I’ll use). Putting this out there right now, John and Karenn did die in this arc.

Writing wise, this was a brutal arc for me to write. I hate having the female protagonist die and more than that I killed off the main protagonist as well as made the villain go a bit soft at the end. I dont regret any of it, but I tend to write arcs with music playing and the songs I had playing were a bit sad, which didn’t help with my mood. One of the songs I used was from the Princess Mononoke OST, The Legend of Ashitaka. (Have that on repeat while reading this story!)

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