Between the resurfacing of his painful memories and the anguish on his student's face, Master Zatark didn't know how to go about the current situation. He contemplated showing Brier his memories of the Arch Massacre. He didn't even show it to Mikhail, who was his other pupil.
He knew that Brier was careless by nature and often acted on instinct. This was the only way he knew to show her the Overshadow's real terror. If she had not experienced the cruelty of the Overshadow's herself, she might lower her guard on earth and met her end.
Zatark knew that few angels could compare in strength to his brother Zarak, but he didn't want to take any chances. Even before Zarak joined the Overshadows, Zarak was regarded as a prodigy. Zarak was supposed to be one of the ten Overshadow commanders ruling the earth, but he met his end with the sacrifice of Ryza. The number of the Overshadow commanders dwindled from ten to nine on the day of the Arch Massacre, but that didn't make the Overshadows any less dangerous.
"Brier, those memories you saw. Please don't forget them."
"Forget about them, I could never," said Brier calmy
Master Zatark didn't know if Brier said that on purpose, but in that moment Brier definitely reminded him of his dead friend Ryza. Though she lacked Ryza's trademarked grin, Master Zatark knew that they were the same personality wise. They would not hesitate even for a second to give up their lives for a friend.
"Your friends were heroes. I just wish that I could have done something instead of standing by and watching them die."
These were Brier's true thoughts, and Master Zatark knew that this was the real reason for Brier's gloomy mood. He knew that Brier felt guilty for not being able to help. There was nothing she could have done in a time that she didn't belong to. In more ways than one Master Zatark was the same. Zatark understood that feeling of guilt better than anyone. If he had been stronger back then, maybe Ryza would have been still alive. It was impossible for Brier to had helped fight Zarak, but Zatark could have prevented his friend's death by being stronger. Master Zatark had not felt these feelings for a long time, but each time he did, he had to deal with it alone. However, that was no longer the case, because he knew a particular annoying teenage angel now shared his pain.
He took notice of Brier, who was sitting in the chair opposite of him. She cast a downward glance and used her bangs to shield her teary eyes. However, no matter how hard she tried to hide her grief, the sound of her sniffling could be heard. In the quiet room that the two shared, Zatark then grabbed hold of Brier's delicate hands and squeezed it. Brier then directed her gaze upwards, and her teary crimson eyes met with her Master's. In the fluorescent magic crystal-lit office room, her cheeks flushed red, and her ears perked up at the sound of her master's voice,
"Master Allister, Master Ienzo, and Ry...no Master Ryza, They're all dead. I couldn't do anything to save them. After Master Ryza, Master Ienzo was the next to go. He was sent down to Earth to fight the Overshadows, but he was slain not even ten years in. Then the Masked Master Allister died next. He died to protect his human buddy, and in a way, he was even more heroic than Master Ryza."
Brier cautiously listened to her Master's story and didn't let her ears drop even one word. Brier never knew much about her Master's past, but in the rare instances he did talk about it, Brier never forgot even a single syllable.
Master Zatark continued to hold onto Brier's hand after noticing how speechless and quiet Brier was being. Even though Brier's lax and easy going nature annoyed him, it pained him more to see her so lethargic. He had already grown used to seeing her so full of life, so her current sluggish self truly bothered him. He caressed her hand and softly said,
"My friends are gone, and I'm still here. Not a day goes by that I don't miss them. I understand what you are feeling right now. These feelings of guilt are dangerous, so don't let it eat away your rationality. Especially don't let these feelings rid you of your charming, unique, and cheerful demeanor. My friends may be gone, but I know that they would not even for a second wish for someone to mope about their death. They died like heroes, and it would diminish their sacrifice if we did not acknowledge them as such. Therefore, cheer up and fight on earth so that nobody else has to sacrifice themselves like that again."
Brier's pout trembled as it curved upwards into a smile. With tears flowing out of her eyes, she responded to her Master's request with a resounding,
"Yes, You can count on me!"
Master Zatark saw that beyond her teary eyes, a spark was relit. It didn't take that long for her to return to normal. Then the wooden clock in the corner started to ring and signaled that another hour had passed. Master Zatark smiled and loosened his grip on Brier's hand
"It's time for you to go now. I've kept you waiting long enough."
"Master, You still have to finish all the paperwork though."
"Oh that, I finished all of it during the 1st hour you were here."
Upon hearing that, Brier crossed both of her arms beneath her chest, tilted her head to one side and puffed out her cheeks.
"If you wanted me to stay with you for a little while longer, you didn't have to be so sneaky about it."
Even if she was now a Master herself, Zatark couldn't help but see her as the girl he trained for the last 15 years. The time they spent together was of immense value, and it saddened him to see his student finally leave. Master Zatark then got out of his chair and lead Brier out of the office. They walked through the old hallways, and Master Zatark then opened a door that held the Portal of Realms. The Portal of Realms was what allowed the angels to travel to Earth, but it only traveled one way. This meant that once an angel left their homeworld of Radina, they couldn't come back. The Overshadows had destroyed the Portal of Realms that was on Earth, and this was the only functional portal left in existence.
Master Zatark then pulled a lever, and the Portal of Realms created a hole in the fabric of space and time.
Brier stood there and stared in awe of the hole's blue light. What awaited her beyond this portal was a mystery, and she could not help, but be anxious about it.
Master Zatark noticed a shift in Brier's personality, and he tried to ease her worries. He grabbed Brier's hands and led her to the edge of the portal. Brier's blonde hair fluttered from the gust that the hole in space and time created. He then looked into her eyes and said,
"You were born on Radina as Brier La Stellar, but please start your life on Earth anew. Therefore, I hereby grant you the Earthling name of Bree. Live your life how you see fit on Earth and remember to do good no matter where you go."
Brier then reined in her master's hand and pulled him in for a hug. Her flushed face brushed against her master's chest and she spoke softly,
"Thank you for everything you've done for me. I'm sorry I caused you so much trouble, I'm sorry I wasn't easy like Mikhail, and I'm sorry that I couldn't do more for you."
After hearing those words, Master Zatark gently flicked Brier's forehead with his one free hand and gazed downwards to meet Brier's crimson eyes.
"You are going to leave, and the last thing you want to do is apologize? I have not even for one-second thought you were troubling. You told me earlier to send you off with a smile, so should you not at least do the same. Get that pathetic look off your face and let my last memory of you here on Radina be a happy one."
Brier choked up, nodded her head, and responded with a triumphant
"Sure, No problem."
She let go of her master's body and walked towards the portal. However, she did glance back one last time and smiled at him, before embarking into the unknown. The minute her body had stepped through the portal, the world around her was pitch dark. Then the next thing she knew, she was in a white room with nothing, but a table and two men in suits and sunglasses.
Her eyes were wide, and she was stunned. She didn't know where she was, and the following words sent a shiver down her spine.
"Paging, Ceo Dameson. We have the young angel in custody."