The Time of Ten Suns
The result of Resurrection after V6…
What I was staring at just now reminded me of a legend I’d heard from Teacher during my lessons. It was a well known legend among archers.
It was said that long, long ago, even before the establishment of the Church of the God of Light, there used to be ten suns until a “hero” came and saved the continent from their harsh rule. In those days, ten suns hung in the air, beating relentlessly down on the people. Days were filled with sweat-soaked shirts and wilting plants, dried up riverbeds and empty wells. Starvation and death plagued the continent. It wasn’t until a hero rose to save the land that the continent was finally freed from the never-ending heat, but the hero nearly went too far.
He could have talked to the suns and persuaded them to leave. He could have negotiated and asked them to go back to taking turns. Whether that would have solved things or not was anyone’s guess, as that was not the path he had taken.
Instead, he took his arrows, raised his bow, and shot down the suns, one-by-one, almost dooming the land to eternal darkness.
It was said that the hero was one of the Shadow God’s men, sent on a mission to bring absolute twilight to the world. Daylight was the God of Light’s domain while nighttime was the Shadow God’s (in the meantime, the God of War laughed at both, for war waged no matter when).
The Shadow God could not let the God of Light keep His advantage of having ten suns doing His bidding, and it was an undeniable truth that the continent could not bear the intensity of ten suns for much longer. Even the God of Light agreed something had to be done. He just didn’t think it would come at the cost of the suns’ lives.
The hero took up his bow and shot down the suns, becoming a legend, greatly revered and later regarded as the most skilled archer in all history as well. His was a name never absent from archery lessons. I knew it well, and I admired his skills, even though I didn’t agree with his methods.
He would have shot down all ten suns if not for the God of Light’s interference, who stopped him before he shot down the last sun. Gods were not supposed to personally interfere, but even so, the God of Light could not stand by and let the world fall into complete darkness.
The last sun came to be known as something precious, something to be protected.
Some say that that was when the Church of the God of Light was established. Its main function was not the worship of the God of Light but rather the protection of the last shred of light. The citizens all knew how important the sun was to them, and hence they worshiped their Sun Knight perhaps even more than they believed in the God of Light.
Legend had it that no Sun Knight had ever died in office, as loved and protected by the God of Light as he was. As the last of our light, the one person we were to serve above all else, it was a given that we could not let him fall to harm. Otherwise, we would surely fall into darkness.
Yet there Sun was on the conference table, shirt dyed scarlet, pupils dilated.
I heard a scream echo around the room.
I grabbed at my throat. It was only then that I realized the scream had come from me. I couldn’t breathe.
How can Sun be dead?
Hell appeared after that, his forceful aura flattening me, forcing me to buckle. It woke me up. I stared upwards with tears in my eyes, but even so, I could see all the little details in Hell’s newly gained wings and the infuriating upward quirk of his mouth.
Sun had given me so much more than I could ever repay him. He had given me a second chance, and he had also given me better eyesight than I could never hope for. I squeezed shut these eyes that Sun had given me, wishing that gouging them out could return Sun to life. But it wouldn’t.
Like what he had done for me, Sun would have sacrificed anything for his brothers. He would have done the same for Hell.
I opened my eyes and glared at Hell.
How could Hell betray him?
He had no right to smile. My hands clenched, fingernails digging into my palms.
If not for Judgment, I would probably have put an arrow through that misplaced smile. Judgment immediately took charge and declared that we would never let Sun’s murderer off.
The Demon King merely laughed and said he would be waiting. Then, he flickered out of existence.
I didn’t know what to do.
Judgment sent for the Pope.
My heart jolted.
That’s right! The Pope knows Resurrection.
Like how I had been revived, Sun could be revived too. New hope flared in my chest. The guilt that gnawed away at me ebbed. Just a bit.
The Pope was hesitant about casting Resurrection, but I knew Sun would never choose death. He would never abandon us. Especially when we couldn’t lose him.
The Pope drew the magic circle. The Pope’s chance of performing a perfect Resurrection was only a one eighth chance, and even if he wanted to, he could not sacrifice a part of himself to guarantee that Sun would suffer no side effects.
It was selfish of us to wish Sun back to life when there was a seven eighth chance that he would suffer a side effect — he’s already lost his sight and his golden hair, what else must he suffer — but I knew Sun. He had given his sight for me. He had given his blond hair for Judgment. He would give everything and anything for us.
He would not care what he might lose or suffer. His complete lack of self regard made me want to pin the mini Sun doll I had to the wall, but there was nothing I could do to change his self-sacrificing ways. It was what made him Sun. We all knew that was who he was.
I clasped my hands and prayed, my lips wobbling.
When the light dispersed and the Pope collapsed by the table, I hurried forward to support him, but I immediately noticed a strange sight before me. I didn’t need superhuman sight to tell that something was very wrong.
Very, very wrong.
Sun had black hair. Sun had blue hair. Sun had short hair. Sun had curls.
It was not that I was fixated on hair. It was just that the hair was the easiest to distinguish. It was not that Sun had a combination of all that I had just described either.
Then, Sun pointed a sword at us, and it didn’t fly out of his hand.
Another Sun growled, “Who are you?”
One Sun looked entirely normal with long blond hair and blue eyes and didn’t seem to be a master swordsman nor an amnesiac, but his normalcy actually made him stick out. Three other Suns had white hair, but two of them quickly covered it up with holy element once they realized the state of their hair.
I could only stare.
“Sun?” someone blurted.
Seven pairs of eyes swerved to stare at the speaker, who turned out to be Blaze. Apparently, not all of them were the Sun Knight. The one with blue hair, the one who had asked us who we were, and the one with white hair did not immediately glance over. They only did after they saw the others do so.
“What’s going on…” I said weakly.
The Pope, who I had been supporting, glanced up at me. “Well, I didn’t expect that the God of Light would answer this way.”
It was true that we wanted Sun back at all costs… But we never expected that we would end up with ten of him!
Just like the legend my teacher used to tell me, we now had ten Suns on our hands. I hoped that our land would not become ravaged like the land in the myths, but watching the ten Suns before me only gave me a sense of foreboding.
Archer I may be, I was sure I could not be like the hero in the myths and solve our current dilemma.
But does that matter, and is it really a dilemma? I never agreed with his methods anyway.
I decided to toss caution to the wind, giving way to my emotions. I pulled the closest Sun to me into an embrace.
“Thank the God of Light you’re back, Sun!”
It mattered not that we now had ten of him.
Sun is Sun!
I was positive we would be able to figure out which one of them was our original Sun, and we would love the rest just as much.
At least, I thought so.
But Earth always believed that I was too optimistic.