The Fated Hour (1)
Before they go gallivanting across time and space, the group need to make some preparations. Ayla tells the group that her village has some awesome new armor that they should look into acquiring. How she knows this is anyone’s guess, but she hasn’t steered the group wrong yet, so Ayla, Frog, and Magus board the Epoch and head to Ioka village in 65,000,000 B.C. to see what the fuss is about. The group lands in Ioka and speaks to the trader in the village and he tells them that he has powerful new armor which he will trade a powerful new armor for 10(!) each of petals, fangs horns, and feathers. Ayla coughs up the required loot and the trader give them the Ruby Armor, which in addition to being quite powerful reduces fire damage to 20% of what it would normally be. This may come in handy in the near future…
While the team is on the hunt for powerful pieces of armor to help in their ongoing quest to fight Lavos, they decide to collect the contents of the sealed chests that they have been coming across every now and again. The group’s first stop is at Porre in 600 A.D. in order to use Marle’s pendant to “activate” the chests but not yet take their contents just yet. When the group make their way to Truce and Guardia castle, they are greeted as heroes as they express graditude for their help in defeating Magus (even though Magus is in the party, I guess no one knows what the Fiendlord actually looks like in person. Queen Leene even gives Frog a personal thank you to Frog for his part and for helping Crono defeat Magus. After “activating” or collecting all of the sealed chests in 600 A.D. the group then travels to 1000 A.D. to gather up the contents of the chests. Not collecting the contents of the chests in 600 A.D. allows the group to use their time travel power to essentially collect some of them twice, once in the present then again in the past since that’s how time travel works in this world. Another benefit is having the chests react to the pendant in the past causes them to upgrade in the future giving the group even more powerful versions of the elemental gear which provide superior protection as well as absorbing even more elemental damage.
When the group tries to collect the chest in Guardia Castle in 1000 A.D. they need to have Marle with them or else they get immediately chased out, providing a contrast to their heroes’ welcome in 600 A.D. With Marle in the party, the Chancellor stops her in an attempt to smooth things over between her and her father. The Chancellor tells Marle about her father’s dedication to the realm and how he puts nearly all else behind his duty as king. He recalls that even during her mother’s final days how she wanted to spend time with her husband but he was too absorbed in his duties to see her one last time before the illness that she had finally claimed her life. The Chancellor the casually remarks that in a certain way, the king could be blamed for his wife’s death, cementing his spectacular failure in mending the strained relationship between Marle and the king. If that was even his true goal…
Once the group empties the chest in Guardia Castle, they have one more stop in their preparations. The team boards the Epoch and flies east to Medina village and heads to the monument which resides in the northern forest. As the group approaches the shrine, the pendant begins to react once again breaking the seal. Once the seals is broken, a (the?) Nu appears and offers the group a choice between two of the sealed chests. One of the chests contains a powerful weapon (a sword to be used by Crono), and in the other is a piece of protective equipment. After making their choice (I usually go with the protection since Crono will be getting a much better sword in the near future), the Nu proclaims that he will now return to Belthasar and disappears seemingly aware that it will take almost 1300 years. Man, Nus are next-level.
With all of the (currently available) sealed chests collected, the team returns to the End of Time to consider their next move. Talking with Lucca reveals that she is very interested in the Sun Stone, the source of energy used by the Kingdom of Zeal until they drained it of its power and started using the Mammon Machine. She seems to think that if its power can be restored, she might be able to make a weapon that could be effective against Lavos. She recalls something Gespar said and thinks that there might be a connection with an isolated island in 2300 A.D. Looking to explore the matter further, Lucca, Robo, and Magus board the Epoch and take off for 2300 A.D. and locate the island. On the island is a small cave leading to what is known as the Sun Palace, which consists of a single large chamber which looks suspiciously similar to the Ocean Palace complete with statues of Queen Zeal. As the group is exploring the room, they are suddenly attacked by a creature surrounded by fire. The unusual thing about this new creature, called the Son of Sun, is that it can only be harmed by attacking one of the flames surrounding it, which it periodically rotates in order to keep its opponents guessing. Fortunately for Lucca, Robo, and Magus, most of the Son of Sun’s attacks are fire-based and they just happen to have a bunch of brand new gear which protects them from fire. Despite its dangerous game of roulette, the Son of Sun is eventually defeated and retreats to the rear of the chamber. The team catches up to the creature and when they attempt to engage it the Son of Sun disappears and become the Moon Stone. After a short examination, Lucca determines that the Moon Stone is merely the Sun Stone but still drained of all of its energy. Unfortunately, Lucca claims that it would take eons of direct sunlight to restore the stone of its energy but on the bright side, they have a time machine, they can make eons go by in an instant!
With the Moon Stone in hand, Lucca and the gang take the Epoch to 65,000,000 B.C. to look for a suitable place to put the stone where it can get plenty of sunlight and recharge. The group eventually comes across a small northern island where a small opening in a cave can provide nearly constant sunlight. Lucca places the Moon Stone on a small pedestal so it can soak in the solar energy and the group heads back to the Epoch. The team warps back to 2300 A.D. to and head back into the Sun Shrine to collect the researched Sun Stone but when they reach the pedestal that the stone was resting on, they find it empty.
It can never be easy…
After examining the pedestal for a moment, Lucca determines that the stone has been missing for quite some time so the group decides to start going back through the time periods to see if they can find about when it ended up going missing and recover it.
The first stop is the Sun Shrine in 1000 A.D. where the group enters the shrine in the present day but the stone is missing in this tame also. Lucca again inspects the pedestal and concludes that the stone has gone missing recently. Given this information, the group decides to look around and see if they can’t locate the missing Moon Stone. When the Epoch make its way over Porre, the group notices and awful lot of light coming from the mayor’s home so they decide to investigate. The Mayor denies that he is either in possession or has ever heard of any Moon Stone, however after talking to his family members and hearing their reports of how greedy the mayor is, the group suspects that he knows more than he’s letting on.
Presented with an apparent stalemate in the present day, Lucca and the team decide to travel back to 600 A.D. and see if interviewing the family’s ancestors can give them an inside lane on convincing their decedent to give up the Moon Stone. While talking to the family, the group discovers that the elder’s wife is looking for some spiced jerky for a dish she wants to prepare. Even though the war against the Mystics has ended, good spiced jerky is still hard to come by it seems. Perhaps doing a favor for the family will get them just what they need to convince the Mayor circa 1000 A.D. to give them the Moon Stone. Fortunately, the Snail Shop in present day Porre has spiced jerky available for a premium price, but the group can easily absorb the cost at this point. They then take the jerky back to 600 A.D. and offer it to the woman. She offers to pay a hefty sum of money for the jerky, but Lucca is feeling generous and gives to her free of charge. The elder’s wife is so touched by Lucca’s kindness that she vows to teach her children about the value of generosity and make it a family legacy. Satisfied that this could be just the development they need, the team then returns to 1000 A.D. to see if the mayor is a little more willing to part with the Moon Stone.
Once back in the present day, the group enters the mayor’s home to a much different scene than before. Both of the man’s children are much bigger fans of their father and the mayor’s wife seems much more satisfied also. Although she secretly wishes he was just a little less generous with the family’s money. Well, there’s no such thing as a perfect solution. Once Lucca talks to the Mayor himself, he’s more than happy to return the Moon Stone to the group, claiming that a passing traveler left it with them. Sure, whatever you say buddy…
Now that the Moon Stone is back in their possession, the group returns to the island containing the Sun Shrine and returns the stone to the pedestal for its final 1300 years of recharging. A quick flight to 2300 A.D. and the group enters the shrine and retrieves the fully restored Sun Stone. Once she has the stone in hand, Lucca is convinced that she can in fact us it to make a powerful weapon against Lavos. The team then makes a bee-line to Lucca’s home in 1000A.D. where she processes the stone, spouts some techno-babble, and eventually reveals the fruit of her labors, the Wondershot, the most powerful handgun in existence. Its damage output is a little inconsistent, but it can certainly pack a heck of a punch. Taban then enters the room and reveals that he too has been working on something using a shard of the Sun Stone; a sweet pair of sunglasses increase the effectiveness of weapons when worn, presumably by making the wearer look awesome.
With the power of the Sun Stone at their disposal, the group returns to the End of Time to see what other adventures they can get into and what rewards will be granted.