Chapter 15: Beyond Time: The Search Begins
|The Mazkertis Paradox|
Beyond Time: The Search Begins
|← Chapter 14: Spark|
Beyond Time: The Search Begins is the fifteenth chapter of The Mazkertis Paradox. In this chapter:
- Niflheim is contacted in his dreams by an old friend, who tells him that he needs to gather the Original Universe's versions of his old friends in order to return to his own universe.
- Masahito Nakamura takes measures to undo the damage inflicted upon the Galactic Government by an impostor pretending to be his son.
Beyond Time: The Search Begins opens with an account of the creation of the Original Universe's Galactic Government. When the first Earth to be incorporated into the OU was destroyed, there were numerous survivors of the cataclysm who watched as the first Earth was instantaneously replaced by a second Earth. One of these survivors, a man named Nakamura, chose to see the destruction of his homeworld as an opportunity to further study the science of the multiverse. He and his kin vowed to use their accumulated knowledge to create a safe and prosperous future for all sentient beings and to protect the worlds and civilizations that could not protect themselves, so that no world would have to suffer the fate of the First Earth. The Nakamura family shared their dreams with nineteen other organizations across the stars, who together founded what is now known as the Galactic Government.
These secretive founders, the Gorosei, vowed to keep the Galactic Government stable and sealed their words in ink and magic as a guarantee to vulnerable worlds that their promise would never be broken. This tradition was kept well into the modern era until the promise was indeed broken by SM Raito Nakamura, who attempted to abuse his newly-gained position as Commander-in-Chief to disband the Galactic Government; an announcement he made in the 3784th Assembly of the Reverie. Though the Commander-in-Chief rank did not actually have the power to disband the G.G., SM Raito's announcement nevertheless caused panic across the universe and even caused the outposts protecting XTR-378, Yoon-Ta, SD-349, and New Vourah to prematurely cease their operations amid the confusion. While the Gorosei launched a manhunt for Raito Nakamura, the four aforementioned planets were ravaged by hostile alien races. The Gorosei Masahito Nakamura, the father of the Original Universe's Raito who remains unaware that his son has been replaced by an alternate-universe duplicate, prepares a statement.
In the present (Day 76 of The Mazkertis Paradox arc), Masahito addresses the universe with a broadcast from Pangaea Castle on Mariejois. He states that Raito's attempt to dissolve the Galactic Government was illegal and reassures the public that it remains committed to providing protection and stability for its member states, acknowledging and apologizing for the abandonment of their outposts around XTR-378, Yoon-Ta, SD-349, and New Vourah. Masahito further announces that the Galactic Government will work with the Intergalactic Red Cross Movement in providing relief for the worlds affected by Raito's actions, and reveals the name of the new Commander-in-Chief to the public: former Fleet Admiral Sakazuki, also known as Akainu. Finally, Masahito thanks the universe for their support and ends the transmission.
Meanwhile, Niflheim awakens to find his conscious mind inhabiting the Dreamscape, a dimension of pure thought that he also once explored back in his home universe. He is then telepathically contacted by Mina Bjork, who explains that she had projected her consciousness throughout every timestream in an attempt to find Nif when he disappeared from their universe's Hell. Now that she has finally established contact with him, Mina tells Nif that he must collect the versions of his old friends, including her, from the universe or timestream that he has been stuck in (BZPB's Original Universe) in order to return to Niflheim's World. Mina urges Nif to hurry because of an impending cataclysm, but their telepathic connection is severed before she can elaborate and Nif wakes up in his quarters aboard the Night of Fire.
Imbued with a new purpose, Nif tells Captain Eurobeat about his dream and his conversation with Mina. Eurobeat is unsure whether Nif abandoning his quest to kill Mazkertis is the right thing to do, but is persuaded when Nif mentions that if he found the OU's version of Mina, she could use her powers to locate Mazkertis and warp herself directly to his present location to stop him once and for all. The Night of Fire sets a course for the nearest space station: Atuar Sadiares.
Upon arrival at Atuar Sadiares, the crew of the Night of Fire discover that the space station has been occupied by the ZFT due to the Terugan Civil War. Regardless, the Night of Fire proceeds to land on Platform 068-D, where Captain Eurobeat accompanies Nif onto the platform to ensure that he passes the heightened security checks. Fortunately for them both, the resident ZFT security offers are the hapless Mike & Dave, recent ZFT recruits who forget to provide Nif with proper identification. Nif bids farewell to Captain Eurobeat and proceeds into the station.
Inside, Nif makes the mistake of asking some different ZFT officers where he can find a spaceship dealer, which prompts them to ask to check his (non-existent) identification papers. As Nif prepares to battle the officers, a Jedi named Seran Dol-Abi comes to the rescue by confusing the two officers with a Jedi mind trick and sending them away. Seran explains to Nif that he had a precognitive vision in the Force that instructed him to help Nif find his allies, mentioning Mina and EEEEEE by name. Nif agrees to join forces with Seran to achieve his goal.
Meanwhile, two helmeted Judoon mercenaries haul their prisoner, SM Raito/Akoran Zicks, through Pangaea Castle and past two Psymancers into Masahito Nakamura's office. Cornered and powerless, SM Raito admits that he is indeed an impostor, but not one of a nature that would have been easily detected by any of Mariejois's security methods: even the telepathic Psymancers had difficulty determining his true identity because he frequently ingested psyblock. Masahito instructs his Psymancers to launch a full-on attack on SM Raito's mind and break through his psyblock shield - though the Psymancers cannot determine much about SM Raito's life before recent events, they discover that the man in front of them is not their Raito Nakamura; but the Raito Nakamura of the Shattered Mirror Universe.
As Mike and Dave prepare for the end of their shift on Atuar Sadiares, they witness a Christmas miracle: Santa Claus, GregF, and FAAAK-Cupcake fly past them in Santa's sleigh, with FAAAK-Cupcake belting out a distorted Christmas Carol.
- Captain Eurobeat
- Masahito Nakamura
- Mike & Dave
- Mina Bjork (NIF)
- Raito Nakamura/Akoran Zicks (SMU)
- Santa Claus
- Seran Dol-Abi