The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II
This summary contains spoilers for The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II
Prologue - The Depths of Despair
Awaking to pain coursing through his body,
Rean slowly rose to his feet.
Taking a moment to survey his surroundings, he quickly realized he was somewhere in the Eisengard Mountain Range.
This land, so far away from Trista, was a place of peaceful tranquility.
Celine and Valimar, who was silently kneeling nearby, had been waiting for Rean to regain consciousness.
The familiar relayed the situation to a still-confused and panicking Rean.
A month had passed since that fateful day he was torn from his friends. On top of that, it was now impossible to return to the place he'd last seen them.
As Rean tried to quickly descend the mountain and get back to civilization, his path was stopped by a giant weapon not seen since the Dark Ages: a Magic Knight.
Still injured from his fight against Crow, Rean had trouble withstanding the construct's relentless strikes and was soon brought to his knees.
Showing no pity for its struggling opponent, the Magic Knight raised its blade to deliver the final blow.
But at the last moment, its mighty swing was interrupted by a powerful orbal art. The Magic Knight was thrown off balance and tumbled over the edge of the cliff.
Looking in the direction where the attack came from, Rean saw that his savior was none other than the bracer, Toval. With him were Princess Alfin and Rean's sister, Elise.
They took an utterly exhausted Rean back with them to his nearby home of Ymir, a mountain town known as the Hot Springs Paradise.
Seeing its beautiful snowy landscape once more brought Rean a measure of peace, though he was still anxious to know what had happened to his friends.
He would find out later that day when, at the Schwarzer residence, his parents, Toval, and the others filled him in on everything that had happened in the past month.
It was then his hopes were confirmed. Though they had been scattered and their whereabouts unknown, his friends were still safe.
He also learned that Elise and Alfin had gone through a lot to get to safety, themselves.
Once their discussion was over, Rean paid a visit to the local hot spring in order to collect his thoughts.
None of this would have happened if he had been strong enough to fight off the Noble Alliance forces. Strong enough to protect his friends.
As he assaulted himself with such harsh thoughts, Elise appeared and gave him some much needed encouragement. Moved by her kindness, Rean was able to remember the resolve his friends had shown before they were separated.
Believing in the faith his friends had given him was just the motivation Rean needed. He resolved to search the country until he had reunited with every last one of them.
However, his harsh fate struck again when he least expected...
While Rean and the others were on an expedition outside town, jaegers appeared and attacked Ymir.
Hearing gunshots, Rean ran back to find his parents collapsed on the ground, his father covered in blood.
Seeing this, a roar of rage and despair burst forth from Rean, echoing throughout the town.
Driven by hatred, he lost himself in his power and ruthlessly dispatched the jaegers.
Fortunately, Elise's intervention and the news that Baron Schwarzer was still alive were able to bring Rean back to his senses.
Appearing before the relieved group, Vita apologized for the incident and made it clear to them that this was the result of Duke Albarea acting on his own.
As a show of good faith, she erased the jaegers' memories of having found the town and cast a spell that would keep it safe for a time.
This strange moment of kindness caught the group off guard...
...just long enough for a girl in black riding a strange puppet to swoop down on them.
Taken by surprise, they had no chance to retaliate as the girl seized both Elise and Alfin.
Unable to chase after them, all Rean could do was assure them that he'd come to their aid.