The Alchemists' Quest
Coming in contact with his old master outside Ishik acted as a wake-up call for Bixby. He was reminded that he made his Dark Pact to gain power to protect his tribe but things had spiraled out of hand and now the dark spirit he made the pact with was gaining control of Bixby. He sought help from the Light Temple but they couldn’t help him since he willingly gave his soul to the darkness. The Dark Temple, on the other hand, could help him but at a price. Commander Cross in Koyu could get him a stronger dark spirit with which to make a pact. This would override his current pact and give him complete control over his powers but they wanted something in return. Bixby must convince the shifters to settle near Koyu in the shadowlands. Not all the shifters, just the dark ones and ones that wish to. Cross thinks Koyu would like shifters monstrous attributes combined with their intellect. Bixby agrees but only if the shifters aren’t separated completely and can still communicate and get together from time to time. She agrees and prepares the ritual.
There are two parts to the ritual. The first replaces the dark spirit inside of him by replacing it with the Darkspiral Spirit. The second activates its powers and gives Bixby control over them. She’ll do the first part before he leaves for the shifters and the second when he returns with them. The ritual is done in a temple and is similar to other warlock rituals Bixby knows. He cuts his hand with the dagger and offers blood to the Darkspiral entity. He can actually feel the new power enter his soul and forcefully rip the old dark spirit away. The old dark spirit is thrown from his body and Bixby actually sees the darkness escaping out of his mouth. The spirit forms into a body (much bigger than Bixby remembered it being when he first encountered it) and screams as it rushes at Bixby. But it can’t hold its form together and dissipates before it can touch him. The next day Bixby teleports to Ishik to try to sway the Shifters.
He leaves Ishik quickly as he’s not much welcomed there. Now that he knows the shifters can find him by scent, he disguises that as well as his normal stealthiness and is able to get to the Dark Tribes without alerting the other tribes. However he unexpectedly runs into Talia once he arrives. She’s very happy to see him and says she’s been teaching his message of balance but the Shifters seem determined to take one side or the other. She also notices something different about him. He seems darker yet more pure.
Bixby tries for a week to get the leaders of the Dark Tribes to see him but they keep ignoring him. He notices Talia is pretty well liked pretty much everywhere and decides to bring her into his plan. Using her, he manages to get an audience. The Dark Tribes are all about Bixby’s plan. He has no trouble convincing them.
Rather than risk getting hunted by the light tribes again, he has Talia talk to Cloud for him. Cloud thinks it’s a splendid idea and presents it to the leaders of the light tribes. Some don’t like the idea of splitting the tribes but most are happy with the idea of getting rid of the shadow tribes. So all the leaders agree with Bixby’s plan. They’ll meet once every 2 years at neutral ground and agree that no shifter should kill another whether they be light, dark, or neither.
With the arrangements made, Bixby leads the Shadow Tribes south to the Koyu. It takes several months but they eventually arrive mostly safe and sound. With his part of the agreement fulfilled, Commander Cross finishes his warlock ritual giving him access to his darkspiral powers. Bixby stays with the shifters for about a week when he gets a letter from Commander Aiden. It asks Bixby to return for a special mission and so Bixby heads back to Portakal.