[Warning: this story contains spoilers for the game. If you do not wish to be spoiled, please stop reading here.]
This is a story that was printed in the special book Monad: The Secret Files, that was released several months after the release of the game. It is neither prequel nor epilogue, but a story set between the events of the game. Thank you to Des (Gamefaqs) for the scans!
The translation has now been updated to reflect the English localization as much as possible. Mostly names have been changed. As I am not British, I did not even try to mimic some of the dialects as I am sure I would get them wrong. I apologize. I left Monado as Monad because I'm stubborn. If you see anything else that is wrong, please feel free to leave a note to me in the comments below.
Author: Yuichiro Takeda
Director: Tetsuya Takahashi
[The Bionis has awoken, and the Telethia are threatening the world. This is a secret episode that decides the future of Fiora, who has taken the Monad of Meyneth, as well as the rest of her companions.]
The world of the Bionis--it is a land that spreads across the vast corpse of a humongous god. Along the leg of this god a colony has been built--one of the last ones in existence--Colony 9. The home and one of the few refuges left for the steadily decreasing Homs people. It is said, once long ago, there were ten full colonies. They fell to the Machine God’s armies sometime in the distance past, to be all but forgotten.
Colony 9 has survived longer than the others because of its one advantage: its great distance from the world of the Mechonis. Colony 9 was able to live peacefully despite the attacks happening above them. For those living in Colony 9, this is a home that could never be replaced.
“Shulk! Shulk... um. You got a minute?” Dean asked. He was a researcher who was ten years Shulk’s senior. Shulk had been working on his project at the military research center on Colony 9 when Dean had decided, as always, that he needed Shulk’s advice. He always needed advice. There was some widow he was half in love with, that seemed to be all he thought about. Despite Shulk’s long absence, he returned to find Dean to be the exact same as he had left him. Not that I really know anything about this sort of thing myself... Shulk thought with a sigh.
Dean was in the middle of saying something, and with a start Shulk realized that he hadn’t been paying attention. Not that Dean seemed to notice. He just went on about his problems as usual. Shulk liked him, and he was a senior researcher, so he decided to help him as best he could.
“... I’ll do what I can.”
It was such a small thing that he wanted. Shulk had already been through caves filled with monsters, to the head of the Bionis and back several times, what was all that to this? It was nothing at all to help him get what he wanted.
“I’m glad I could help you. Need anything else?”
Dean shook his head, smiling. He was such a serious person, never making jokes like the other people Shulk knew. But he was a person with a good heart.
Climbing the stairs of the research center, Shulk walked out into the Military District plaza. It was already evening. Another day had gone by and he hadn’t found a hint of what he was looking for. Not because of Dean’s little request, that had nothing to do with it. It would be easier to capture a dream upon waking then find what he hoped to find. Though I don’t think Linada is wrong, he thought. He cut across the plaza, his thoughts hazy and muddled.
It was just that time of evening when those who worked during the day were rushing home, and the soldiers on watch at night were heading out to their posts. The feelings is brought up felt so familiar, Shulk felt he had wandered back into the past.
The war against the Mechonis’ army had been occurring since time before history. It wasn’t too long ago that Colony 9 was nothing but a base of operations, somewhere they could return to. All the action would happen along the Sword Plains. When the Mechonis soldiers attacked, they would head out to meet them. On occasion, it is said, the Mechonis soldiers even made it as far as the Gaur Plains. But never, ever, had they reached Colony 9.
Such peace could have never been forever.
They had a year of peace after the last attack. One full year, before Colony 6 fell to the swarms of mechon. Those machines continued on, nearly taking their own colony. Except for...
That had been the start of their journey.
Now Colony 9 was preparing for the battle against the Telethia. Their great wings tear the sky, attack before you can even draw your sword. Their entire existence was to serve the Bionis. To reap the lives that live on that world. There was no where to run, no where to hide.
Day and night they readied themselves for battle. But, life continued on as always in the colony. It wasn’t the same peaceful life they had led before, but no longer would they allow themselves to be ruled by fear. Everyone’s changing... they’ve had to become so much stronger. Shulk thought to himself, watching the people pass by.
They all had to change, strengthening their minds and their bodies. And their hearts. Tension still vibrated through the air, but life continued on as usual.
It was one less thing Shulk had to worry about.
Soon they would be heading to the inside of the Bionis, to meet the god head on. There would be no escape. They would either win or die. They had decided, then, to leave behind no regrets. To do what they had to do, before they met their final fate.
Shulk needed to give the information he had gathered on his journey to his fellow researchers in the colony. The people who had lived on Mechonis, the Machina, had technology they had never seen before: The Monad Replica. If the Homs had that, it would give their armies incredible power.
Dean had been pleasantly surprised, and had gladly began researching the data Shulk had brought him (his expertise had not always been in cabbage rolls.)
There was just one thing left. One more thing that Shulk had to do. A small hope for the future that the Machina doctor Linada had given him. It was only a slim chance, but he desperately wanted it to come true. This was something different from the Monad Replica, something he hadn’t told anyone about...
Passing through the Central Plaza, Shulk headed towards the Residential District. He saw the artist Kenny Rohan and waved a greeting, but Kenny seemed not to see him. Sesame had a sleepy look to him, and didn’t seem to recognize him. The shops that opened at night were already open, as Shulk walked nearer to the entrance of the colony. Near the bridge that opened out into the wild lands, was Dunban and Fiora’s home. Dunban had chosen that spot so he could be first on the front lines when the enemy struck. Shulk put his hand on the door, and smiled. He had been here so often since he was a child, it was like another home to him. Looking at the bright lights shining out through the windows, he went inside.
Fiora’s cooking was excellent. While the food she had made along their journey had been quite good, when she had her own kitchen to work with her cooking turned into something else entirely. Shulk watched her, smiling, as she made her delicious meal.
Long ago, there had always been visitors to Dunban’s house. Shulk and Reyn had, of course, always been there to visit Fiora, but there had been many other visitors as well. Dunban’s war buddies, Mumkhar and Dickson, the defense force chief Vandamme and his underling Kantz, were all frequent guests. After Dunban had been injured in the war at Sword Plain a year ago, the guests had been less frequent, and the visits less joyous.
Many days and months had passed since then, and now those who sat around the table were the companions they had met on their journey. They were laughing and talking, arguing and shouting, for Dunban and Shulk it was like those old days were back again.
Then food was placed on the table.
“Don’t you dare take that, old man!”
“You’ve had plenty already, Rein~ If I don’t eat enough, I’ll get all dizzy dizzy~” Riki complained, while stealing a large chunk of Energy Aubergine from under Reyn’s nose. Dunban sighed.
“I can’t imagine where you put all that in your tiny body...”
Reyn lunged at Riki, but before any damage could occur, Sharla slapped them both on the back of the head.
“I think the two of you need a cool down.”
Melia decided it would be best to ignore them all, and turned towards the counter.
“I’m sorry to rush you like this, but we ought to give them the next plate of food right away.” She picked up the plate of food Fiora had just set down.
“Ah! Wait, wait.” Fiora said, not taking her eyes off the food she was cooking. “That bowl of stew is for you. I’m going to give Reyn and Riki their portions in a moment, so don’t worry about that.”
“... you don’t have to worry on my account. I’m not the one who is desperate for food.”
“Ah, no no, I mean... I left that one aside for you before I put in the Spicy Cabbage for Reyn.”
It was true, Melia wasn’t too fond of Spicy Cabbage. When she was small, she wasn’t allowed to be picky about the food she ate. She was taught that it would be an embarrassment to the royal family if she were to refuse the food that the people had offered her.
When Reyn had shared some with her on Gaur Plain, she had eaten all of it without complaint. She knew that Rein hadn’t meant anything by it, he had just wanted to share it with her (although, after she had tried her hardest to choke down the cabbage, Reyn had given her another piece with a huge smile on his face. She had felt a bit murderous then.)
“I didn’t need to?”
“No, that’s not... thank you.”
“Oh, being honest now? Good, good... I like it when you say what you’re really thinking.”
Melia wasn’t sure how to feel about it. While, it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, she had been raised as a High Entia to never say directly how she really felt. It was difficult to get used to.
Fiora smiled at her. She always said exactly what she thought, and felt. Perhaps, Melia thought, I could be like that too. But could she?
“Alright, here’s your share, you gluttons. I’ve put in some Sweet Wasabi, as well as bits of salmon and tuna. Enjoy!”
Reyn and Riki’s eyes lit up.
“Fiora, I love you~ I’ll let you rub rub me later!”
They had no problems getting along as long as there was enough food for the two of them. All other sounds were drowned out by the chorus of their raucous eating.
“Melia, you should eat yours before it gets cold.”
“Ah, right...” Melia took her plate and sat at the table. Then, she took a bite.
“This... is delicious.”
The stew (minus Spicy Cabbage) was mild enough even for the taste buds of a High Entia. For the first time in Melia didn’t know how long, the food she ate was truly delicious.
Melia woke up with a start. Someone was crying in pain. The ether light glimmered in the darkness through the window. The night was still young.
Fiora’s room was on the first floor of the house. Places had been set on the floor for Melia and Sharla, and the three of them all slept there. Sharla slept peacefully beside her. The one who was in pain was Fiora. Pushing herself out of bed, Melia went to Fiora’s side. She looks like she’s in so much pain tonight..., she thought.
It had been like this for days. There was nothing anyone could do for her. She wasn’t sick, or feverish. Melia couldn’t even wipe the sweat from her brow. It was some problem with her mechanical body. The only one who might know what it was would be Linada.
It made Melia feel powerless. There was nothing at all that she could do for her friend. It made her feel desperate, she wanted to destroy something.
Then, outside, she saw a familiar shadow beneath her window. Shulk, who she thought was already asleep. Where could he be going at this time of night.
She felt anger boiling up inside her. She knew it was unreasonable, but she needed someone to blame. Here she was, holding Fiora’s hand night after night while she screams in pain. What could he possibly be doing that was more important that this? Wasn’t this his job?
Melia knew, deep down, that it wouldn’t matter whether it was her hand or his. Neither would magically cure her. It didn’t matter, she just didn’t care.
Melia buckled on her armor as quickly as she could. With the Telethia out there, waiting to attack, you could never be too prepared. He was headed towards the research center. It only made sense, that was where he spent all of his time these days. She dashed out the door after him.
Following behind him, Melia didn’t even need to take precautions about being seen. He was so intent on his destination, he didn’t even realize she was there. Soon he reached his researching room, and immediately began searching around the bookshelves, riffling through some old documents. Similar papers were scattered all over the room. Must be continuing some research he had started earlier in the day.
Shulk was a boy who took his responsibilities seriously, he always had to do what he felt was right. It was because of that, Melia herself was still alive. His Monad Replica project would save countless more people. Still, Melia wanted to say to him “It’s wonderful that you want to save so many people, but there is someone special to you that lies every night in pain.”
Melia was angry. Very angry. Shulk still didn’t notice that she was there, standing in the doorway. His mind was filled with thoughts of the regeneration device.
The regeneration chamber... Linada had told him about it. It was ancient High Entia technology. Anyone who might know the details of this machine had long turned to dust. And yet, this was their only hope to save Fiora.
Even the Machina didn’t know enough about the device to reconstruct it. They had to hope that there was one left somewhere in the Giant God World, still operational. He wanted to believe her, he had to. He began searching in secret for any tiny scrap of information he could find on the machine. There may have been something of this machine written in their reports. Everyday, while he worked on the Monad Replica project, he searched through the mountain of books and documents he had for any small hope.
Unfortunately for Shulk, Melia had no idea of any of the thoughts running through his mind.
“What are you doing here!?”
“M-Melia...?” Shulk jumped in surprise. He lost his balance, falling on top of Melia. Then, decades worth of piled up papers and books cascaded down upon their heads.
“Look out!” Shulk yelled, throwing up his arms to protect Melia from the avalanche that was about to fall on them. And then...
Melia faced the recognition device, and spoke.
“With the power passed down to me from the royal family, I order you to let us pass.”
Dunban turned his face away. He didn’t want anyone to see his tears.
“It seems I have you to thank, again...”
Rein was smiling.
“Leave it to me. I’ll protect Shulk until we finish this. I promise.”
Linada offered her encouragement.
“This is the right decision for you to make. Enter the chamber.”
Fiora smiled, her decision made.
“Shulk, are you alright?”
The colors of the world slowly filtered back into place. Melia sat in front of him, her eyes full of tears.
“Melia, where...” He stopped, and looked. His research room. Papers and books scattered everywhere. Then he knew. His consciousness had just returned from a short trip to the future.
“Oh, yes... yes, of course.” He saw that Melia had realized it too. When he had protected her, it had caused his special powers to activate.
“You saw it then? The future?”
Shulk nodded, then explained what he saw. It was a Vision of the regeneration chamber. Fiora had stood before it, surrounded by all her friends. Melia had opened the door to the room that contained the device...
“... you mean, that is what you have been looking for all this time?”
“Yes... I knew it had to be somewhere. I know where it is now. We can help her, when can give Fiora back her body.”
“Then, you mean...” Her voice wavered, her eyes bright.
“It’s all thanks to you! Now I know that the device is somewhere in Colony 9.”
Melia hugged him tightly. “I can’t believe it!” Melia felt a tinge of regret through her happiness. He had been worrying about her, he had been working to save her all this time. She had been wrong...
It was the room that they had always used to replenish the ether cylinders. Further back was a door that had never been opened. That they never could open. Melia stood in front of it.
“With the power passed down to me from the royal family, I order you to let us pass.”
Long ago this flying machine was controlled by an ancient High Entia. Whoever had owned it before had left orders for it to accept a new master. Melia was now that master. For the first time in hundreds of years, perhaps thousands, the door opened.
The defense system didn’t activate, letting them through into the core. It was there, where Shulk had seen it in his Vision.
“This is it. I know it is.”
Linada nodded. In the center of the room stood a clear capsule, just large enough for a human. Connected to it were complex bits of wires and machinery. Dunban’s voice shook as he looked at it.
“This machine... it can really bring Fiora’s body back...”
“Yes, it should.”
“I see... I... Shulk, it seems I have you to thank, again.” Dunban quickly turned his face away. Shulk remembered from the Vision that he was hiding his tears.
“And I can really...? I mean... I...” Fiora whispered, wanting to believe yet not quite believing. Linada patted her shoulder.
“Yes. You’re body might be a machine, but you still have parts of your human body. This machine can take the information from your genes to reconstruct your body.”
“I don’t really understand, but this means Fiora will be all squishy squishy! Then she can hug me!”
Fiora laughed. “Of course I will.” She said to Riki, smiling. But her eyes were filled with shadows.
“Are you alright? Is something wrong?” Sharla asked.
"Um... yes. Linada? How long will it take to regenerate my body?”
Linada was fiddling with the machine. “Of course, let me see. I think about half a year would be enough.”
“Half a year...” The shadows in her eyes grew darker. Rein smiled, touching her arm.
“Only half a year? Leave it to me. I’ll look out for Shulk until we finish this. I promise.”
“Reyn! You really don’t have to protect me anymore.” Shulk said, embarrassed.
“This is the right decision for you to make. Enter the chamber.” Linada opened the capsule. “Once you go to sleep in here, you’ll wake up in half a year as good as new.”
Fiora laid her hand on her chest, and smiled. “No, I... I can’t go in there yet.”
Shulk and Fiorung looked down on Colony 9 from the ledge that that led into Tephra Cave.
“Are you sure this is what you want?”
“You keep asking me that. But then, you’re always like this.”
Shulk was worried. She knew he was. But Fiora felt as though a great weight had been lifted from her heart. Going into the chamber was something that would just have to wait. She couldn’t do it now. If she started her regeneration, she would be asleep for half a year. The god wouldn’t wait nearly so long. The life on the Giant God might be wiped out by the Telethia. They had to defeat the god... defeat Zanza. If Fiora were to go into the chamber, she wouldn’t be able to fight with them...
“I’m sorry, but I’m not changing my mind. I must use the body I have now to fight with you. I can change back afterward. I told you. I don’t want to stay behind just to worry about you. I’d rather fight beside you.”
Linada was in turmoil. They didn’t know how long the fight would last. She might not be able to hold onto her body, having lost Monad. She explained it to Fiora, but she showed no signs of changing her mind.
Linada sighed, resigned. “If that’s what you want... then I will try to hold onto your body for as long as I can.”
Reyn and Dunban stood beside each other, looking down on the cityscape.
“We’ll be back. Before you know it, we’ll be back.” Rein said, clapping a big hand on Dunban’s shoulder.
“Oh yes, we’ll be back. Then the fighting will be over, and Fiora will have her old body back, and all of us will live here... in peace.”
Shulk nodded. “This is our home. Of course we’ll be back.”
And so they left, walking through the caves to get to Gaur Plain. Behind them lay Colony 9, their one and only home. As it always has been.