Author Topic: Watery Grave  (Read 337 times)


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Watery Grave
« on: April 29, 2015, 10:18:08 PM »
a mulatto / an albino / a mosquito / my libido /

All participants engaging in the various acts of coitus depicted here are adults of responsible, legally consenting age. Fate/stay night, Tsukihime, and their related concepts and ideas are the intellectual properties of Kinoko Nasu, Type-MOON, Notes Ltd. and other respective rights holders. This story is written solely for the purpose of entertainment, and not for any sort of monetary profit. If anything, consider this free advertising.

Watery Grave

“I swear, I don’t know which one of you two idiots is the worse influence on the other.”

Tohsaka Rin was pissed off, plain and simple. Nothing suggested otherwise. Anyone who saw how she incessantly paced back and forth through the hotel room would’ve been reminded of an antsy wildcat stalking about its cage. Further proof of just how angry she was was how she didn’t break eye contact with the ones who drew all of this ire. Her gaze wandered somewhat with her troubled thoughts, but she never fully took her sight off of them. She had a mostly unfounded gut feeling that if she stopped reproachfully glaring at them for even a second there’d be even more trouble waiting for her to clean up the next time she looked.

It didn’t particularly help. The pair was still uncooperative to various degrees, in their own ways. As for who exactly these two hellions were that she was forced to admonish-

Illyasviel von Einzbern boldly locked eyes with Rin in some sort of counter dominance display. Emiya Shirou just looked like he wanted to be somewhere else. Anywhere else. Even so, he still tightly held her small hand.

When Tohsaka saw that she scowled. Illya scowled right back.

“Do you even understand the gravity of the situation?” Tohsaka asked, “You can’t just do what you did and expect there to be no bad consequences.”

“And what of the good?” Illya countered, “Are you willing to deny the positive effects of our actions?”

Tohsaka pursed her lips. Grit her teeth. “Don’t act like you knew that going in. You essentially threw rocks at a hive because you decided it was your business to see if it had any bees. Only in doing so you inadvertently invaded a powerful micronation and assassinated one of its chief politicians. What were you even thinking?”

“Life’s just a series of small miracles isn’t it, Tohsaka?” Shirou replied. This comment caused the full brunt of her baleful staring to be directed right at Shirou. His shifted his gunmetal gaze to the side to avoid direct eye contact with the distressed woman. All things considered, her vitriol was justified. Still, he felt that if he didn’t at least do something to deter her attempts to undermine them she’d just lose sight of priorities.

Illya said, “If you want to be technical over analogies we knew full well the hive was active and went in with full intentions. What we stumbled upon was a mutant, rogue strain of Africanized bees that boasted a lovely mother lode of honeycomb.

“You’re spot on with that micronation bit, though. Kudos to you, Rin,” and finished off with a perfectly cherubic smile.

Being an educated magus, Tohsaka knew full well of the terrible might of cherubim.

“You might be in the right in some capacity,” Tohsaka fully admitted as she collapsed onto a chaise lounge directly across from the loveseat the two shared. She was tempted to break into the bottle of complimentary champagne and drown her bad feelings in the traditional way of her family, but resisted the impulse to imbibe, “Might be,” she sternly elaborated with a tone heavy with real gravitas, “But, the morality of this matter doesn’t mean anything right now. This little stunt has marked you as walking blood money.”

Whether it was irresponsible or thoughtful of them to do, it didn’t matter as much as she made it seem. Tohsaka wasn’t just angry. She was also afraid. Not for herself, though she had a healthy respect for death. Her concern was for the recklessness of the two before her.

“This is all Illya’s fault. I just know it,” The young woman complained out loud and a catty “Hey!” was uttered by the accused party in reply, “Seriously, Emiya, if you do something crazy you’ll make the other people in your life sad.” As she warned Shirou, Tohsaka nervously twiddled her thumbs. It was only for a moment. No one else noticed how she made this gesture but her.

That was her self-imposed duty: to foster as much divergence as possible. She would condemn herself to Hell if she let the future she saw come to pass.

Difficult things were difficult. She imagined just giving in and letting the icy bubbliness of the chilled drink go down her throat. All she had to do was get that cork off and then this work wouldn’t feel so much like work anymore.

Tohsaka put that aside and switched gears to do the comparatively more responsible thing: chew out these two. “You really ought to control your other half better.”

“Why would you say that like it was possible?” Shirou groused empathetically. Illya squeezed his fingers tight enough to make him wince a little. “There’s not much straight thinking between the two of us when we both get riled up, and especially over something that big.”

“Well then,” Tohsaka went on “dare I even ask how this absurdity came to be? If you drop a bomb like this I at least expect that much out of it.”

As she asked this, she gestured to the shadowy man standing passively in the corner. Who had been there the whole time. Who was clearly not human. Who knew better than to get in the way of a scorned woman.

“Umm…” Illya looked at Shirou with an expression that bore an uncertain kind of tautness. Shirou was clearly on the same wavelength as her because he mirrored her wide eyed-ness. “Yeah,” she said, apparently coming to some unspoken agreement, “I suppose there’s a way we can relay to you as much as you need to know in order to get the facts straight.”

‘As much as I need to know?’

“Yes. There are details that we,” she referred to herself and Shirou, “needn’t share for personal reasons, and we simply can’t speak for some of the viewpoints because we’re not privy to their experiences. We can only tell you what we choose to tell you, and that’s our limitation as storytellers.

“Even so, what happened tonight was definitely caused by the convergence of two stories-”


- ] | [ -


He fucked up.

He fucked up real bad this time.

There he was, trapped in absolute darkness, deep within the Frankensteinian hull of the Fredensborg. It was still as ever in his black prison. The ship was so sizable that there was no discernable rocking. There was no distant, mercifully tangible indication that motion existed. There was no weak but there proof that the world out there actually existed and that hadn’t just been an elaborate hallucination in his head.

The void he was sentenced to was only a facsimile of what a real one could be like. It was produced by human hands. Of course the experience would be a limited one. That was why the original shell was refined upon by the capabilities of once-human hands. That way it was no longer simply limited to be just a void.

Now, it was something closer to an approximation of Hell.

He heard an echo distorted by the winding hallways. He heard the just out of earshot whispers that drifted from the cracks into his head like lazy blowflies. He heard hushed conversation around him, but even if he knew the original language spoken by the voices, he wouldn’t have understood for it was communicated solely through emotional vibes warped and withered by ages of suffering. The arrhythmic quality of the noise was incessant. The psychic residue left over from the slaves who had been stowed and suffered back in the original vessel’s heyday had festered.

“Get a grip…” he muttered, “Your bodies were sold off to the New World centuries ago. …why are you even here?”

As for those who had died aboard it, their souls remained slaves to the ship ever since. They were guard dogs stripped of all their humanity, a strong reminder that he was not alone in this closed world.

The physical pain of his captivity was dull and monotonous. Every bone was broken, and every joint and tendon was pierced by a sword. Chains were unnecessary to hold him.

Here, his body impaled so, covered in wounds, with no way for the light of the moon to reach him in these bowels, he had no chance to recover.

This was a prison meant to hold a vampire.

The voices were torturous, the pain was cruel, and the darkness was maddening. That just came with the territory. None of that was meant to be an especially personal torment by the design of the creator. One of the few times he was allowed a glimpse of light in his prison had shown to him what exactly had been placed down here to keep him busy.

It was a single boom box that played Personal Jesus on loop. Original and covers. Bootlegs and official lives. Parodies and mashups. Drunken singalongs. Acapella.

Now that, that had been done vindictively.

He’d have barfed up his guts by choice a long time ago if they weren’t pinned in place by the crucifixion. He’d never have pegged Brunestud’s white knight as a closeted rocker, but he supposed a pseudonym like ‘Demon of Stratovarius’ had to mean something.

Or not. He didn’t know. He was too tired to think. But, the whole of it all made it so that he was never quite allowed to rest.

Especially not now.

The cover of darkness, chatter of ghosts and perpetual music had always obfuscated his arrival until those glowing red eyes turned around the corner and bear right into him. The spirits would be silenced by his arrival. He would then will an old whale oil lantern to light, and approach him, strutting in tune to the music. He had no need for it in order to see in the dark. The reason he took it with him on was that it brought color to a world drenched in black.

It was purely to stroke his sense of aesthetics.

“Salutations, my dear Enhance,” his captor said with a jovial purr. He pressed a button on the machine and the music was silenced. He took care to not cut it in the middle of a note, though. It was all part of his ritual.

“…Svelten.” His prisoner wearily addressed the number Eight of the Twenty-Seven Dead Apostle Ancestors.

“You know what?” Svelten asked, “The more I look at you the more I realize just how much of a shame it is that I’ll have to ultimately give you up to m’lady. If you hadn’t been turned then I would’ve surely gleefully drunk you dry. That much is a crying tragedy, to be haunted by such near-perfection right in front of you and to not be able to enjoy it how you’d wish.”

“First name basis. Sure know how to make a guy feel special.” Enhance said.

Svelten continued to run his eyes over the ruined body of the one the Dead Apostles venomously knew as the Single Edge. There was a time only recently when he too had derided the Knight of Vengeance in conversation using that name.

That was before he successfully undertook his operation to capture the heretic. When he had not yet seen how starkly visceral it was the way the traitor charged madly into the ambush, even when pitted against the strength of his vaunted Ghost Corps and their overwhelming advantage. Before he had seen Enhance up close and personal.

“Enhance” was what he was known as, and from that point on “Enhance” was what he would always be to Svelten.

“Verily so, your words are. That is because you are indeed quite a special oddity, even when compared with the unique existences of the rest of our peers.” He came in as close as the jutting hilts would permit and stared the captive, Eighteenth right in the face. “Violet. Such an unusual eye color to be held by a vampire,” he said. This was not the first time he took to admiring this feature of Enhance. Svelten’s particular tastes had earned him much notoriety in the supernatural world as The Bloodsucking Count. He was a connoisseur of boys and men, and the more handsome the specimen the more he was compelled to make them his prey. Beauty nourished him. But eyes, eyes were the one thing he cared the most for. If it was said that his hunger made him lust for men, then it was eyes that fulfilled his soul. When it came to eyes sex didn’t matter to him as long as they were lovely.

“Indeed,” Svelten said, “I am not especially looking forward to the day when you change hands from me to the Black Princess. She might just turn you into food for the dog and be done with you. It’s not as if you don’t deserve it. You slaughter your fellow vampires wholesale like animals and you’re fed to the strongest one there is.”

Svelten retreated inwardly to think about this. Hours could have very well passed by in the interim lull.

“Perhaps I could see to it if I could maybe petition her into honoring a request for a co-claim on you. I would compromise on at least that much in this matter. Surely, we could still make the beautiful music together like I’d want to.”

“…pass on that. A psycho-socio carnivore like you gives gays the planet over a bad name.”

“Putting aside the fact that you’d have no choice, you have forgotten.” Svelten was unfazed.

“True enough,” his prisoner conceded. He didn’t have the means or desire to fight back. The wild stallion that he once was had its will broken enough to realize the futility of doing anything in this position.

“I do enjoy these visits of ours, Enhance.”

“Makes at least one of us.”

“Then I suggest you decide soon enough that you like them as well. It is fair to say that I have been rather accommodating enough to you, have I not?” He gave a quick one-over of the thoroughly penetrated Enhance. “…all things considered.

“The possibility that the transference of ownership of you over to m’lady is a death sentence is a strong one. It makes more sense to enjoy the time you have remaining when faced with uncertainty. I thought that, as the one of us who is closest to humans, you’d fully embrace that line of reasoning now that you have nothing left but me.”

“I’ll think about it.” Enhance said, after a moment.

“In that case, Enhance, I’d like to leave you with wishes for a pleasant evening,” said Svelten as he walked away.

The music came back on. The lantern went out. The red eyes vanished behind the corner. The darkness was back. The ghosts returned.

“As if I’d know,” Enhance growled through gritted teeth when he was left alone one more.

Boy, he really had fucked up.


- ] | [ -


‘The difference of ten and two more’s steel will cause night to stay everlasting.’

It was the first time in Svelten’s 942 years that he had heard the fabled Rose Prophecy, and it would be the last. Whether it was the work of a lone sibyl, or instead the collective will of all of the Dead Apostles and their link with the moon as they subconsciously read the flow of fate as it related to their immortal selves, it was a message that all who ranked among the Ancestors received. It urged self-preservation, to designate with one’s own hands a successor to take their place among the Twenty-Seven.

It was a warning of certain death.

There was no voice. It did not have a particular sound or cadence. There was no way for a vampire to prove that those words only meant for him it existed. It was purely an epiphany – the knowledge that this was to be.

“How difficult,” Svelten had merely said to himself at the time he received it. It was accepted as truth. But, during a night with conditions as optimal as these for a vampire he found it hard to believe. Just as it was that Christianity accepted the word of God, and yet there were heathens who left the church and no longer answered to it, there too were vampires who had turned from the proverbial faith, and as such were unable to recognize its call – in theory. Dead like the Serpent could not speak on their own behalves.

Still, he was a retainer to Altrouge Brunestud, whose court was at the center of the invisible kingdom of the vampires. It was easy enough for him to believe in the Prophecy’s word as law. He believed, but he could not accept. His was a mission from the Black Princess herself, after all.

Svelten stood on the deck of the ship, a platoon of his Dead before him, Parade primed and ready to dispense its necromancy. Through his links to all of his work he had complete sight of the surrounding ocean, all the way to the distant horizons.

‘Let them come from anywhere on the surface,’ he thought.


- ] | [ -


“Okay, Shirou, open your eyes now!”

“…wow.” What Shirou saw made his eyes open quite wide.

He was not flying through the sky, but floating. The lights that surrounded him were not stars, but the glow of bioluminescent sea creatures. The liquid moon up above was full and white.

This response quickly turned to “Whoawhoawhoa!” when he saw that they were in a bubble underwater.

Both of these responses pleased Illya. “We’re fine, Shirou,” she said with emphasis and assurance, “If this wasn’t such a sturdy submarine I wouldn’t have even thought of taking you out here. I’ve done all of my homework for this one.”

If the unintentional poking around he did during his moment of surprise that hadn’t popped the bubble wasn’t enough, then it was Illya’s calmly confident words that put him to ease. “Okay. Yes, alright. This is wild,” once he regained some of his composure he scanned his surroundings and – more idly and deliberately – prodded lightly at the bubble’s interior, “It feels like just one minute ago we were on the beach, and then the next we’re here.”

“You did let me hypnotize you, so that’s within expectations. I wish I could’ve somehow given myself a similar time dilation effect during it. I couldn’t wait to show you!” Illya quickly stood up and spread her arms out wide, as if to properly introduce their ride for the night. It wasn’t especially visually interesting. It was just a bubble, after all. The only thing about it that could be pegged as unusually was its diameter of around the size of a wardrobe, definitely comfortably large enough for a pair of passengers.

“It didn’t move when you did,” Shirou noticed, “So it has some frictional quality to it. On top of that, it’s stable.”

“Gyroscopically stable!” Illya said excitedly, “Both of which are features that can be controlled at the caster’s will,” and demonstrated this with an effortless twirl. The hem of her white, airy sundress tickled the tip of the sitting Shirou’s nose. It was enchanting, until he realized that Illya was getting physical in a small, enclosed space. “Hey. We’re…not going to run out of air in this, are we?”

“There’s no need to worry about that, either. The bubble is designed to let oxygen filter in and carbon dioxide and other things filter out. I did say it was a submarine. It’d be a poor one if it couldn’t even last a few hours.”

“It’s anything but poor. This is impressive. You’ve put so much thought into it that I don’t know what to really say. It’s amazing.” Shirou said with glowing admiration as he once again ran his hand along the inner surface.

He was a grown man, but his reactions were, in a word, boyish.

She had another word for it: charming. She was reminded of times that, while not necessarily more innocent, were still turning points in their lives, as well as part of a youth to be treasured. Putting aside the fact that they were still young, of course.

“Shirou,” Illya sing-songed, “Do you like touching that bubble so much?”

“Well, I do like beautifully crafted things,” he wryly admitted.

“Then, why don’t you come in close so that you may touch this beautifully crafted thing?” Illya suggested as she scooted up to Shirou. “There’s atmosphere to enjoyed.”

His arm around her was the only answer needed.


- ] | [ -


For this part no more details were given than were absolutely necessary to set up their location in this event for the sake of Tohsaka Rin’s information gathering.

“Okay, so why were you underwater, and miles off the coast?”

“That’s what we can’t tell you.”

“And why not?”

“I thought the Japanese were supposed to be more modest than this.” Illya bemoaned to herself, though she made no attempt whatsoever to keep her thoughts from Tohsaka. “Don’t you think it’s rather impolite to kiss and tell?”

“I never asked for any kiss and tell! And I am too modest enough!” Tohsaka furiously blanched. She looked ready to throw something heavy in Illya’s direction.

“The only thing in this world that could judge anyone doesn’t exist,” the other man said, “There’s no God and the only Hell that exists is the one that people create themselves.”

“Did you actually say something just now?” Tohsaka asked with a raised eyebrow, “And did you just side with these two?” Her shock just as quickly morphed into persecution.

“You suggest that I care what these crazy kids do with each other? Because I don’t.”

Violet and azure eyes stared at each other for a few silent seconds. As befitting of a Dead Apostle Ancestor, he dodged that bullet after it was fired. That kind of apathy was something she just couldn’t argue with.


- ] | [ -


The atmosphere was enjoyed.

“Do you know what would look good right there?” Illya pointed to a spot. It looked like how every location of a low-visibility aquatic environment at night looked, but to her this specific spot was the spot. “A castle! With ramparts, and twenty-meter walls, and an elaborate keep with eight spires, one for each possible bearing on a map, as part of a symbolic gesture of our dominion!”

“A castle? Underwater?” was all Shirou took from that.

“An underwater castle made of ice!” An enthused Illya refined upon the original idea.

“That’d be too cold to live in.”

“It would not be.”

“You moan at me to bring out the kotatsu every other time you feel a draft. I think it’d be too cold for you.”

“As if! Igloos are warm and I read that in an encyclopedia so it must be true.”

“Who are you supposed to be anyway, the Snow Queen?”

“That’d be ‘Princess,’ to you! “Besides, there’s another Lorelei called Queen, so it couldn’t be me, anyway.”

”Wait, what now?”

“It doesn’t matter. It’s not important anyway,” she casually blew off the tidbit of information that she herself had shared with Shirou. It sounded like there could have been an interesting story behind that one-off detail, but as it stood Illya didn’t want to talk about it. “Because of how snow works igloos are insulated, so they retain body heat well.”

“A castle is on a completely different level than an igloo. There’s too much space for that method of heating to make a real impact on its temperature.”

“That’s why there’d be snuggling!”

“24/7 snuggling sounds like it’d get old after awhile.”

“You take that back!” she demanded of the blasphemer.

The bubble did make for a fine submarine. Illya and Shirou freely lost track of time within its cozy confines, isolated in a world where they were the only two people.

“There’s so many of these little comb jellies. What do you think they’re here for?” Shirou asked as he looked on at the glowing blobs that played the role of ever-shifting constellations in the undersea night sky. The way the carefree animals gently strummed in the dark currents was like they were slowly dancing with each other.

There was nothing to distract them from the nearby sights.

Illya gently toyed with the stray lock of silver that grew in contrast to the rest of his hair. She twirled it around her finger, made it into a curlicue. She was enamored with it. It wasn’t hard to remember what he looked like before the changes to his body had begun to accumulate noticeably, but Illya still came to adore the way it had made the boyish youth look more and more like a man.

There was nothing to distract them from themselves.

“That’s a good question because it’s so easy to answer, Shirou.

“They’ve gathered here – to mate.”

As she spoke she moved into position on top of him. “What do you think? That all these ctenophora may be brainless, but they have the right idea?”

A single strap of Illya’s dress had already slipped off her shoulder. The moonbeam that shined down lit her figure up like a pale spotlight.

“Illya, did you bring me down here for this?” the look on Shirou’s face gave away that he didn’t ask a real question.

Illya’s smile as she leaned over him gave a real answer.

Who were they to argue with the call of nature?

The lovers embraced. Their lips met with playful, earnest hunger; they couldn’t imagine not kissing each other during a session. He took her straps, both the one astray and the one that had still kept its “proper” place, and slid the dress down from her chest. Illya really didn’t want to stop touching Shirou at any point, but she found the will to move her arms so that she could help him slide it off. One of his hands went all the way down and past her back. It stopped there. It was joined by his other hand, which also stopped there.

He gave an inquisitive squeeze. She giggled.

“Has your butt gotten bigger, Illya?”

“Whose fault would you suppose that is, Mr. Executive Chef?”

“It’d be the fault of the one who orders that fancy room service in between the meals I take the liberty to prepare in our room’s kitchen, I suppose.”

“And do we have a problem with that?” she asked cheekily.

He cupped it again. “No, we do not.” Shirou reached under her skirt, only to find his hands grasp nothing at the sides of her hips. “No panties?”

“No panties,” she winked. Illya went back, far enough for him to ogle her delicately sized breasts, far enough to unbutton his shirt so that she too could eat up the sight of his bared body with her eyes. She went back even further and did his shorts next. With Shirou’s cock exposed thusly to the air of the bubble, air warmed by his and Illya’s mingled breaths, he was at her mercy.

The girl brushed some white strands of hair back behind her ear. Now she was ready to let him have it. Illya ran her tongue around the point of his head. She especially liked to do this bit just so – it was like kissing him, but somewhere lower. She savored the slightly bitter taste of his pre-come, which always perked her up, and better than a cup of morning tea ever could. Earl Grey had nothing on Emiya Shirou.

With her thumb and forefinger gently encircled around his base, Illya brought her hand in between her legs. The tips of her fingers brushed against a button barely revealed by her folds, and it made her quiver. That was it. She already felt herself get wet. The lovey-dovey atmosphere of this whole venture had proven to be immense. The hours of reading material from both scholarly and trashy genres, of trying to figure out how to optimally mix thaumaturgical with mushy, all to produce an unforgettable night for her and her love: all of the research had paid off. With interest.

Illyasviel von Einzbern had decided that she was a romantic genius.

She continued to rub, pinch. Her head dipped further. Down and up. She rolled her tongue around the underside of his tip, rubbed at the soft skin of Shirou’s shaft. The hand that had lightly held him in place now worked Shirou at the same time. Up and down. Down further, up further. Up with a twist, down with a reverse. Down even more, up all the way, so far that her lips almost broke away with a light ‘smack.’

Shirou’s hands tightened with intensity at her devotions. She knew the man was at his breaking point. He’d reach it before she did, but that was fine. That was what Illya wanted. The two of them would be more than happy to arrange something where he would return the favor soon enough. To push him past the point of no return, Illya did-

-Nothing. Illya froze.

“Ow,” was all Shirou could muster up to say. It actually hurt, the cessation of her ministrations that had denied him sweet, orgasmic relief.

“Not a word. Be absolutely still.”

Though she let out a shaky hiss of her own, she was deadly serious. Shirou followed suit and grew taut as a pulled bowstring. Her eyes darted back and forth. She scanned the barely lit sub-surface waters. He did just the same in his direction. Even the bubble seemed to have stopped breathing. It became quite cold all of a sudden within it. The bubble had made like a heatsink and flushed all of the warmth it held within to disperse in the nearby water, to camouflage the temperature of its passengers.

The moon was gone, and a dark shadow loomed overhead.

Illya and Shirou didn’t have to look very hard or long for the intruder.

It passed by at an almost lazy clip, its shape obscured by the night, but even from their position they could tell it was huge.

“There’s a bounded field,” Illya whispered barely audibly, excruciatingly slowly into Shirou’s ear, “If I hadn’t been here in the water, and if it hadn’t passed right over us, we would have never noticed it.”

”Do we have an idea of what its like?” he asked.

”Yes to invisibility of the highest order. Grade-A wards are a given. It’s the strongest field of its type that we’ve seen. This really is a one in a million chance. We shouldn’t have even been able to see how it blotted out the moon,” Illya said. Not that there was way to know what exactly the bounded fields did without obtaining knowledge of the creator’s mindset and abilities or, heaven forbid it, testing directly, Shirou still implicitly trusted her estimate to be accurate enough to go on.

“What do you think it is?” Shirou asked another question,”A magus, or…?”

“Even if it was perfectly cloaked it wouldn’t have been able to hide the sense of decay associated with it from me.”

Then there was no doubt that it was the lair of a vampire. A strong one.

Yes, it was leagues away from civilization. But, the vampires it housed fed on people. There were few exceptions to this rule. The younger ones fed with rabid abandon. The older ones secretly enthralled entire regions and were a different sort of cancer. Vampires on the whole caused people as individuals to suffer.

To top it all off, there were rumors of the Dead Apostles mobilizing for some cause…

They knew what had to be done about this was obvious. Especially when Shirou donned that look. When he got like that it was like he wore his beliefs on his face, to save all that he could within his sight and to see justice be done. He wanted to make others happy, keep them safe.

She was the first one that he had been able to. She who originally decried the ideology, and resisted that aspect of him again and again. But, they continued to be drawn together. There was common ground to be found, forgiveness to be had. After much loss, choices made, things that had been done and said that couldn’t be undone or unsaid, he had been able to save the one he made the decision that he really wanted to more than anyone else. They joined together and somehow made it work when the odds were stacked so drastically against them.

In the end, he was still the boy who wanted to save the people. What changed was that as long as the young woman stayed by his side she was the one he always would choose above others. That was the flaw in his lofty ideal, which kept him grounded and made him all the more human.

That was the look that she had learned to see the beauty in. That was the reason Illya chose to be Shirou’s partner-in-crime. It made her heart race, to see that look on his face, to know that she was a part of this as much as he was.

If left to be, someone, somewhere, would be hurt sooner or later. There were vampires, the enemies of humanity, right in front of them. Could the ones who strove for justice simply let them pass by?

“Trace On---” was the only answer needed.


#irony #usinghashtagstomakestatesments


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Re: Watery Grave
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2015, 10:18:21 PM »

- ] | [ -


Once again, Enhance saw red eyes turn around the corner and greet him in the darkness. The key difference this time was that the height was all wrong.

“Well, aren’t you a pitiful thing?”

It was not Svelten. It was a little girl, no more than thirteen at best. He couldn’t possibly mistake her for a real human. Her features were too ethereal, she carried herself with confidence, and had a mature edge to her being that no amount of precociousness could emulate. A small will-o-wisp also gently floated above her outstretched hand. This orb gave Enhance enough light to see by and take notice of her appearance in the first place. The light also showed to him that she was not alone, for a steely-faced young man followed closely behind her.

“He has no lieutenants that aren’t part of his Parade,” Enhance’s weary mind tried to process this. “Unless you’re independent specters you’re not from around here.”

“How astute for one so brutalized,” she said with an interested expression, “Yes, we here are gate crashers.” The man she was with nodded affirmatively. “We drilled up through the bottom and more or less barreled into you right away.”

“Like a single hole would sink this ghost ship,” Enhance mumbled, “Why do that?”

“There’s a vampire here that needs to be killed, and we’re pretty sure it’s not you.” The man said.

“Not from the Church, then. You acquaintances of Lorelei?”

“Seriously, who is that?”

“Not now, Onii-chan. The vampire’s talking,” she said, “No, we merely happened to be in the neighborhood.”

“A couple of freelancers, who happen to be out in the middle of the ocean, storm the property of a Dead Apostle Ancestor simply because they don’t like it. And here you are, talking to a different Dead Apostle Ancestor just because you can.” Enhance let out a raspy snigger.

“I see our presence here has lighted your fire,” the girl said.

The vampire feebly nodded. “I’ve not felt this good in a long time,” he said.

“Then, if you’re not our target, what crimes have you committed to be interned like this?”

“I kill my own kind. Not for fun and games. I kill to kill.” Enhance gave his reason for living.

“And why do you do this?”

“…because for the Knight of Vengeance, it’s the natural thing to do.”

“Sir Knight of Vengeance, I do believe that there’s something we can do about this situation...”


- ] | [ -


The deck of the Fredensborg exploded like a missile had been shot straight through from the inside.

The Eighth had been attacked from the sea, but not in any direction that he anticipated. That was his error, and he would have to correct it soon.

Svelten turned his head in the direction of the clamor as soon as it detonated. He dismally noted that that was directly over where his prisoner was kept several stories lower. A storm of swords rained down from above and pierced into several of the Dead he commanded.

There were many of those that had missed their mark. That was deliberate.

A pair of figures alighted on the deck, a rumble of impact told of the force they landed with – a man with his arms around a fair child. A field of scattered swords sheathed into the wood lay between them and the bloodsuckers.

It was the full moon. On a night like this even the lowly Dead would have power that neared that of a mature vampire. As soon as the pair landed the Dead flailed towards them with the speed of hunting wolves. They rapidly hobbled and weaved around the swords as they zeroed in on the pair.

That was anticipated, and with flashes of light more swords came down. Not to strike at the familiars, but to embed into deck. A layer of blades encircled them, like a wall. The Dead approached heedlessly.

“Stick close to me. I’m no good without you.”

“That’s an apparent truth, Shirou!”

At this, the cage of swords had become a pillbox. The corpse-bodies that snaked their way into the gaps to get at the intruders within were mutilated. Hot energy and flying steel snaked from in-between the fencepost-like blades and slammed into the encroaching Dead.

The light of the moon empowered the walking corpses. Any blow that wasn’t a kill strike to the head was promptly recovered from and mindlessly forgotten. Their rate of arrival and their numbers was their advantage. They converged on the pseudo-turret as one, as per Svelten’s orders.

Through centuries of sponsorship by the Black Princess, there was no need to create Dead of his own. Svelten was too picky of an eater, too greedy of one as well, to produce children. The slack-jawed visages of the males he once fancied would only have been registered as corruption to his sensibilities. That ghoulish reminder was something he would not allow. The corpse-puppets that had been gathered here were all taken from enemy rivals by means of his own might and magecraft.

Each of his Dead possessed a single spiritual core, a ghost egg. Through these scrapings of Svelten’s venerable soul he was able to exert his parasitic will over tools that were not originally his own.

Via these nodes, the white knight of the Black Princess ordered his privateers to devour Illya and Shirou.

“Duck and grab on!”

Ten lights screeched forth from within the circle of swords. One Dead for each had their jaws ripped off, their heads cracked. Wings of light shredded into them past the speed of sound.

The cage of swords shattered simultaneously. Shirou spun-swept with a golden longsword that broke the wall of lesser blades in a single blow. The exploding metal dug into the Dead’s faces and chests. Reactionary physics, not concern for their own wellbeings, made the Dead recoil from the force of the biting shards. The precursor sword of Germanic lore was used to split a Dead from collar to crotch, and left in its body. A long-handled sickle turned a Dead into a true corpse due to its concept of immortality revocation, and with it a gap in the line of the lunging Dead appeared. He scooped Illya up with one arm and bolted. His body was reinforced to nearly the breaking point. It’d be cruel if it wasn’t necessary.

The memories of Perseus within the weapon told his body what to do. He ran from the scary monsters and took cheap shots at them when he could until he lost the weapon in one of their heads.

The Dead that could pursue did, while the others who needed to regenerate trailed behind. The claws and teeth of the Dead raked at Shirou. Their strikes went skin deep. Their nails scratched up bloody sparks when contact was made with the swords that grew within him. The visible wounds that the Dead inflicted on him were cosmetic.

But they hit like battering rams. Each strike that connected stirred his insides up. His bones creaked from each bodily tremor.

He’d break down from the inside-out. Or they’d trip up. A tumble to the ground for even just a moment meant that the Dead would pull him apart.

He didn’t care about that. He ran with as much power as he could. He just had to protect Illya from them.

Illya shared this sentiment. She had to protect Shirou from succumbing to the pressure of the horde.

Together, they were an archer and his quiver. With her he could fire unlimited arrows. Without either item to support the other their usefulness was cut by more than half.

He struggled to keep the distance he and Illya had on the Dead nipping at their heels. He weaved around and over rubble. He used the leftover swords that remained from the initial assault to swipe at the Dead that got too close. He left the weapons behind when they got stuck in the vampiric puppets’ bodies.

The lights returned. The maximum number of Illya’s guardians was deployed. Ten wireframe familiars, each aglow from the energy of the independent magical core it possessed. They had the shape of birds and flew in a defensive perimeter around the two. They buffeted any who came close with their razor edges, and fired off salvos of prana at those who were further away.

Each one was single thread. The hair that he thought to be so soft and fine had become a weapon used to slice at the bodies of the pack of encroaching Dead. It was meant to be used for protection and active retaliation. She could not fight like this, and against numbers which hardly dwindled. Illya flushed from the stress of having to control ten familiars at once. They were meant to act autonomously and follow simple orders. If she wasn’t an Einzbern homunculus it would have been impossible and dangerous to do. Her neurons would have fried and she would have undergone brain death.

It was still hard. ‘Shoot that one there; hit that one next to Shirou.’ She acted and reacted at exhausting speeds.

There were less Dead than before. Not by much. Many were partially inhibited with swords stuck in various parts of their bodies. That did nothing to affect their relentless chase, and nothing to curb their appetites for the human beings their master ordered them to feed on.

For the second time that night, a figure leapt out of the crater in the ship’s deck and took the fight to Svelten.

The moment that Illya and Shirou had been buying time for had arrived: the full moon had replenished the Knight of Vengeance, the traitorous Single Edge, the demon of the Dead Apostles Ancestors.

Enhance had joined the battle. And it was the lyrical stylings of Depeche Mode that heralded his arrival.

With a blur of motion he brought the boombox down like a sledgehammer on the Dead closest to Shirou and Illya. Its skull exploded into bony gore.

‘-personal-’ the machine stuttered. ‘-someone-’‘

He swung wide. The chest of a foe became a bloody concave. The crumpled body knocked back into the Dead that followed behind it like tenpins. 

‘-hear- prayers-’

Enhance followed through. He didn’t let the Dead regenerate. He didn’t give its fellows that it had been thrown into the opportunity to again chase the humans. He jetted towards them and again swung the boombox.

'-flesh and bone-'

The sounds that followed were the sounds skulls breaking and the device’s chassis crunching. He spun with monstrous speed and hurled it at some distant Dead. Many of the mindless zombies tripped over their downed fellow. The rate at which they moved caused their bones to break under their own weight.

'-make you a believer-'

The thing was still playing music faithfully. Even though they hadn’t shared the best of memories, Enhance had decided that his begrudging self-respect for it was well earned.

'-reach out-'

Avenger, his now-reclaimed demonic sword, was a dark blur that sliced into the Dead. Gouts and clouds of blood and ash sprayed wherever its harsh edge cleaved through Svelten’s vampires. He took a swing with both hands. A few Dead clustered too closely together were bisected at the same time. He took the legs out from another one. He stabbed it through the heart center and split its chest in two with a horizontal blow.

‘-your own-’

He threw a punch at speeds that parted the faint cloud of dust that had billowed from the crater. The head came clean off and disintegrated from the force as it sailed through the air. Enhance seamlessly went into a spin that slammed the stock of the shotgun, the property of the Church known as the Holy Crematal Artillery, into the head of another. The force of the blow twisted its head off. With the monstrous momentum of this move, Enhance used it to flick his wrist and bring the shotgun to the opposite side, his finger right on the trigger. He fired. The Dead in his path were utterly blown away by a burst of blessed fire. A single leaf of paper was dispensed where the shell would have been in a normal rifle.

He grimaced in pain. With the gun in hand, wisps of smoke rose from his withered arm. Just from using it like this it was like an old man’s arm, wrinkled and leathery. But the moon was full. Instead of letting the hurt he felt limit his actions, Enhance channeled into it. The pain was a metronome he danced to. It was a breakbeat in the most literal of meanings.

A weapon by heretics, for heretics. Amen.

‘If the casing gets dented Ciel’s gonna throw a fit when she sees how badly I’ve treated this,’ Enhance thought to himself. He sighed internally even as the chalky, gangrenous brains of Dead plopped onto the deck from each decisive strike.

Hey, if they all died here – quite likely against such a high-ranking Ancestor – at least he’d get out of a lecture. If pain drove him, then guilt was the mind killer, and boredom just as bad.

‘-personal Jesus-’

Depeche Mode as interpreted by DDYND. Trance beats filled the night air.

He’d let it play.

“Clear!” he shouted to Shirou and Illya. They leapt back; he sent a storm cloud of molten metal at a group of nearby Dead that had been again dogged the magi duo. With that self-contained killing spree, the Dead were gone.

This meant that it was time for Svelten to switch gears. “Give one a minuscule taste of freedom and they indulge in buck wild totality,” he drolly complained as he fingered the brim of his cap. “I of course expected nothing less from you when this series of events came to pass, my dear Enhance.”

‘-I’m a forgiver-’

“You know what, Svelten? I did enjoy our little talks. Talking with you always pissed me off, and when I get mad it’s easy to turn that to hate. And hatred is where all of my strength comes from.”

Enhance glowered with black hate. Svelten remained neutral. He did nothing but let the moonlight glint off his armor. He let the world do the work of flaunting his position as the white knight for him.

“It was also way too arrogant to just leave my weapons on the wall across from me. Bastards like you put on a few centuries and then think they’re so above it all.

“That Black Princess of yours will have her turn with me someday, but if she thinks she’ll get to have a leak she’s out of her damn little mind.”

Enhance left the world behind. He surged forward. His curse bolstered his already maxed-out full moon potential. The world he was in now was a world of blurred motion, and he aimed to take Svelten’s head. The memory of his bitter loss against the Eighth did the exact opposite of dissuade him from his course.

Tonight would be different. There was no ambush. It was an enemy he fought before. They were both at full fighting strength.

Svelten invoked the power of Parade that he had allowed to build up all this time. His years of necromancy had ultimately culminated in its development. From soothsaying to bombs powered by the tumultuous feelings of victims of genocide to simple summoning, acts of destruction and creation were things he was capable of achieving in equal measure.

The rubble that littered the deck began to slide back in a single direction. Enhance, Illya, and Shirou felt their centers of gravity shift, and it was harder to stand up straight by the second.

An amorphous giant had risen from the water behind Svelten. He had summoned upon the most numerous dead that the ocean had to offer. The chalky white skeletons of billions of plankton had been unified in death to come together and form a colossus made of sludge-moist diatomaceous earth.

With a pair of arms as thick as semi-trucks it meant to the boat over like a child in the bath would.


The now 50-degree incline put no damper on Enhance’s enthusiasm for vampire killing. He ran, and each step cracked the deck beneath his feet. He climbed, and his talons gouged into wood with each swipe. He flapped his wings, and ascended to meet the Ancestor above him. He didn’t care if a hundred plankton golems were here. Svelten was at the top, waiting for him.


Svelten was waiting for Enhance so that he could knock him back down to the depths of Hell. All the while the ship was tipped even more.


When they registered what was happening, Shirou stabbed swords into the wall that used to be the floor before he and Illya fell too far back. The blades and hilts of the many Noble Phantasms that Unlimited Blade Works had in stock were used as makeshift footholds.


The sound of the music was drowned out by the boom of artillery. The hybrid sea-going vessel Fredensborg was alone in these waters. No other ship had fired upon the three. Rapid flashing pinpricks of flame explosively lit up the form of the giant, and hundreds of cannonballs of mud bombarded them.

Enhance’s blood fell like rain behind him. As the one closest to reaching Svelten, his vision was filled with the globes of destruction. Enhance swung his sword wildly. His reflexes had not failed him. But, the oversized buckshot was fast, and there was so much of it. His strikes hit home, and each one of his multiple strikes brought down a mud ball. If this ploy of Svelten’s weaponized gravity and used it to bolster the already explosive momentum of the projectiles, then Enhance used gravity and the weight of his blade to protect himself. Harmless gobs of mud stung his eyes. His abdomen, torso, biceps, crown - unavoidable glancing blows flayed bloody streaks into his body. He grimaced through this and continued his charge. Enhance would suffer a thousand cuts to delay one single solid blow. That was a price he could pay.

That wasn’t a tab Illya or Shirou could foot. They had more time to react to the barrage than Enhance did, but not by much. He shielded her, like he had done many times before. Shirou once made the images in his mind reality. This time, he did not call upon any sword of legend. This time, he called upon the swords that were his.

Two swords for two allies of justice: Kanshou and Bakuya, the black and white married blades were in his hands.

They were overwhelmed by the noise. Shirou could not respond with the speeds that Enhance demonstrated. He was only human. But he had careful aim and experience. It was barely enough to weather the storm. The gears in his world turned, and the sword that broke in any way he immediately replaced. He had to. Neither sword could stand on its own against this.


“Got it!”

In the middle of it all, Shirou okayed Illya’s plan. His body felt like it was on fire. Like his heart pumped magma, or his nerves were naked electrical wires. He blazed with the surge of prana Illya sent to him.

Even if their body was a magus’, a human was not meant to hold a fraction of the capacity of the Holy Grail. His body would break apart if he stayed at this level for too long.

A fuse was lit, and he was full of powder. If his magic circuit was turned into a cannon, then all he’d have to do is fire it.


“I am the Bone of my Sword…”

He was sent into overdrive. He reinforced himself the instant the heat grew thermonuclear. For an instant, Shirou felt what it was like for a Command Seal to be used to push him past his limits.

He had to use this surplus of energy before he collapsed from midnight sunstroke.

Use magic, make more, spend the influx of Illya’s prana. That’s what he told himself.

He would not be blue-balled again, in any shape or form.

‘-feeling unknown-’

Shirou launched sword bullets at the mass of plankton. His true target was big. Streaks of metal shot past Enhance. The swords split the wet mud. Its arms broke, and its head crumbled where each heroic blade buried into it as the conglomerate of dead essences was slowly overcome by the surplus of spiritually superior weapons.

Plankton cannot speak, yet their death wail was the sound of tons of damp clay collapsing back into the sea it came from.

With that, there was nothing to stop the ship from catastrophically falling back down into the sea. The silver familiars morphed into a safety net that kept the pair from falling away. All Enhance had to do to weather the fall was dig into the deck and tough it out.

Svelten showed no concern for himself as the boat fell. He merely stood as calmly as if he were on solid ground. Instead, he just sort of blinked incredulously as he saw how easily the titan of the Ghost Corps went down when going against this magus’ weapons. He and the homunculus – he saw her for what she was now – were nearly shredded by his Dead. That was no fluke. He had seen their desperation.

Was his compatibility against them just that poor?

If that was so, then he would simply make better use of his resources. It’d be far more satisfying to meet his enemies head on.

With the boon of the moon to bolster the Eighth’s fabled skills, his ornate but sharp sword and parrying dagger easily met with Enhance’s Avenger and Shirou’s Kanshou and Bakuya.

“I don’t believe that I’ve ever had the amusement of seeing an Enforcer in an aloha shirt before.” Svelten said as he dealt strikes to his foes, genuinely pleased with at least that aspect of the night’s events.

“I’m no Enforcer,” Shirou grunted, as he fought to keep the Dead Apostle Ancestor from overpowering him. His arms ached; they were already past their limits, and it was survival instinct and the desire for victory that kept him going. Enhance was a decent ally who helped divert Svelten’s focus, but it wasn’t enough. If the fight continued, he knew he would lose. “-just a concerned guy who you happened to cross paths with.”

“Tell me - does The Battalion mean anything to you, young man?”

“What ‘Battalion?’ ”

“Of Kron? Lorelei’s Battalion?”

“-Damn it.” Shirou cursed as that name once again haunted him that night.

Enhance didn’t ask. Sometimes he felt it better to just not ask.

Svelten jumped away from the brawl. He lazily dodged the thrown swords and sanctified gunfire as he backed away.

“Phantom Rondo; slay once again.”
He intoned. Spirits appeared, this time shoulder to shoulder, rank and file at each of his flanks. He raised his sword; the ghosts did likewise. “Synch rate; bellissimo.” Svelten confirmed his passphrase.

This was why the Church had named him Svelten. His elegant technique where he perfectly synchronized the moves of his ghosts with himself. The intangibility of his retainers coupled with his grandmaster-tier martial prowess as fueled by his Ancestor reflexes made him a virtually insurmountable obstacle.

Rizo-Waal Strout, Neardark; Fina-Blood Svelten, White Knight Vlad. The knights of the Black Princess were considered the pinnacle of the vampire race for good reason. It was said that victory against them could never be achieved – that all one could pray for was mutual destruction, and even that was a miracle-to-be.

Deep down, he felt some variety of remorse that he would overcome the Rose Prophecy. Would that be like what humans felt when they lost faith, came upon that which to themselves was irrefutable proof that their God or whomever was a sham?

Or would he instead feel elation? Achieve enlightenment? Be the vampire who broke the chains, and paradoxically elevated as the symbol of divine right, that Altrouge’s court was a dynasty everlasting?

Either way, few things excited the venerable Svelten to be the way he was now.


- ] | [ -


The fight couldn’t go on anymore like this. He needed to be stopped.

So Illya made a miniature black hole to do the work.

She didn’t care how she did it. She had only read a glimpse about the precise mechanics in a library book and a half-remembered astronomy documentary seen on an outing to a planetarium. But stars were composed of hydrogen, and black holes were collapsed stars, and there were exactly two atoms of hydrogen for every single molecule of water on Earth, and the sea breeze was moist with misty vapor and that was plenty for her to work with. That was more than enough for her full awareness of her wish-granting capacity as a Grail.

Spaghettification occurred. It was a matter of course that Rondo would un-synch. He was pulled like taffy. Svelten let out the kind of horrible sound that no human should ever hear. The grinding of his bones made a makeshift duet with the crackle-pop of unstable time-space.

This unthinkable torture was splitting his head. The suffering was unthinkable. Still, he was an Ancestor, and the left hand of the Black Princess. He would solve this problem before he was crushed like a grape.

“…huh.” Illya said. “So that’s how it looks when a person is pulled into a hole that small.”

It was the girl. Of course.

If he killed her, the magus lost support, and this horrible trap would be exorcised from existence. He could slink away into a hiding place in his ship, he could find somewhere to heal in peace, where he would then proceed to kill the final intruder and once again subjugate Enhance using all of the methods at his disposal. His was a mission from his Princess, and he would allow himself to fail it in her name.

“I’ll take your face, you processed meat doll.”

In a sudden burst of movement he split his breastplate with his own hands. An oarfish familiar shot out of his chest. It was one of his oldest, most precious creations. It was from the Baltic Sea, from the time when the Third Crusade was in full swing. The serpentine beast’s jaws opened wide to show rows of vampire fangs. Already the black hole began to distort the thing’s ribbon body. But it was long, and it would reach.

“Bastard-Breaker, draw.”

Avenger throbbed like a phallus and shifted from a mortuary sword to something much larger, with a highly defined spine. The familiar was split from the jaws all the way to the tip of its tail. The sword penetrated through the now-corpse, and the scent of fish exploded out.

Enhance took the brunt of the undead fish guts. Not a single drop of rotten slime splattered on Illya.

She peered from behind the vampire to get a better look at Svelten’s last moments. The end would be too interesting to not.

- ] | [ -


Her eyes were red.

Not the kind of red that was swollen with tears. Not the kind of red that were the bloodshot eyes of the exhausted or tripped out. No, red was the color she had been born with. Her eyes were red. Not red like the eyes of his princess. Svelten could go on and on about the minute differences between his beloved Altrouge and this hateful homunculus. The layering of the irises within the sclera, how wide apart they were set in their faces, the shapes, wines and roses and vermilions and carmines and cardinals and and garnets and crimsons. Such wondrous crimson. That color, it stirred his heart the way that few things in the world did. It was a holy color. It was not a dirty red, an ugly scar red. It was a hue of gospel. It was pristine, mighty, something more. A color linked to the wondrous world he wanted to take more in of.

Her eyes were not the eyes of his princess. He could never deny that as long as he lived. He could also never deny that her eyes were just as beautiful as those of the princess he adored so much, for different and innumerous reasons that only mattered to him.

The darkness encroached on everything in his sight. Soon there would be no more light to bounce off anything for him to see with. With that, there would be no way for him to see the beauty of the world.

Her eyes were red.

Her eyes were not the eyes of his princess.

But if he forgot all about those important, bothersome little details, then he noticed, with enlightened disappointment and pleasant surprise, that that there was no difference at all.

If those crimson eyes that baptized him with darkness were to be the last thing he’d ever see…………………

He’d be a lot worse off without them.

“M’lady…” Svelten wistfully whispered with a tip of his hat.

Then he was gone.


- ] | [ -


The Fredensborg they were on was an existence sustained by Parade. The demise of the Reality Marble’s owner meant that the ship would go down with its captain. With the disappearance of the necromancy modifications made to it, it would return to being a skeleton and would be laid to rest once more on the ocean floor.

That was assuming, of course, that it would be allowed such a peaceful and cyclical interment. The small black hole continued to rage as it devoured the rest of the boat, as if it were racing against the world’s corrections now that the prana link had been severed. Steel and wood that felt like it became more brittle with every second wailed and rumbled as it was compressed into the apple-sized vortex.

“Well, then. Good job.” said Shirou.

“The guy was a creep and a weirdo. Let’s go.” said Illya.

“Best thing I’ve heard all night.” said Enhance.

‘-reach out and touch faith-’ said the boombox.


- ] | [ -


“If anything’s going to be destroyed, it shall be on our own terms, not because it was the territory of a load-bearing foe.” Illya said with a flash of pride as the abridged recounting of the night’s events was completed.

“So you just left a black hole in the middle of the ocean?” Tohsaka asked.

“It was a small one.” Shirou said.

“Don’t worry about that,” Illya explained, “Its natural decay rate means that it’ll poof into nothingness on its own. Eventually.”

“You don’t know how a black hole works at all, do you?”

“Can any one of us claim to understand how the deeper mysteries of the universe work, Rin?”

“Black holes are not target selective! That wasn’t a black hole you made at all!”

“It was a small one! That’s why!”

Let it be known that Illya would not moonlight as a theoretical physicist anytime soon.

“I still can’t believe you brought a Dead Apostle Ancestor along with you, just like that.” Changing topics, Tohsaka said this incredulously as she once again eyed the dark-coated young man. He didn’t respond. He was too busy idly fussing with a beat-up boom box.

“Can we keep him, Rin?” Illya asked enthusiastically.

Shirou added, “He did say he’d prefer to keep us nearby as the fallout from this comes to a head because he told us ‘Live bait that can fend for itself is a rare commodity.’ Him staying with us shouldn’t be a problem for you or Fuji-nee this time,” he said with a bit of relief, “For once it’s not a young woman we’d be putting up.”

“The gender of the Single Edge is not what I take issue with!” Tohsaka loudly protested.

“His name is Enhance,” Shirou said with a bit of an affronted look, but right now she couldn’t care less about his skewed priorities.

“The problem is not about a broody man who actually calls himself the ‘Knight of Vengeance’ in public. The problem is that you people are nosy and have a death wish!”

“So, Rin,” Illya said, “Does this mean that if you were in our position you would’ve let a craft full of hostile vampires and vengeful spirits roam free as it held a decisive prisoner captive?”

“No. No, I wouldn’t have just let it go. I also wouldn’t have attacked it head-on without any intelligence on what I would be getting myself into.”

“Would you really have?” Illya asked. “If your intelligence had informed you who exactly your foe was would you have still gone up against him?”

If it was just her, Tohsaka Rin alone, would she have taken such a risk? She decided that was doubtful. An upbringing as a magus made her accepting and prepared for death, while at the same time it urged the philosophy of self-preservation. She was a single woman with no successor to pass her Crest on to. If she went, then so too went generations of Tohsaka knowledge. Whether to be left to rot in the middle of nowhere, or stripped from her corpse and taken into Clock Tower storage it would be lost forever. Her things would be hawked by vultures from the Association, and the loss of its Second Owner would cause the power balance in Fuyuki City to shift. Even if the stars aligned and she somehow succeeded in destroying her target, the enemies that this would make her would be too powerful. On her own, Tohsaka Rin wouldn’t have risked it.

But if she had something worthy on the line? Something that she could go crazy for?

“No,” she admitted, “I’m not like that.”

‘-I’m not like you two,’ she thought.

“You’re right. You’re not foolish like us. It’s nothing to be ashamed of that you can’t care about justice the way we can.”

Because really, what else would you call someone who fearlessly attacks a vampire’s lair without any prior information on it, and especially when it turns out that the vampire in question is not only one of the Dead Apostle Ancestors, but also one of the most powerful ones out there? What would you call it when a victory is achieved against all odds, with not only zero casualties, but the addition of an ally? “Idiots” and “dumb luck” were appropriate.

“And what of your so-called ‘justice?’ Tohsaka asked, “This good deed of yours was inconsequential to your original intentions.”

“That can’t be denied,” she admitted, this confession of hers articulated with a matter of fact shrug, “If Shirou and I hadn’t happened to be there we certainly couldn’t be having this conversation.

“You’re right, Rin. The only reason that we even got caught up in that watery grave,” Illyasviel von Einzbern looked at Emiya Shirou with a knowing smirk, “was all because we wanted a few little deaths.”


“For the love of- did you really just say that?” Tohsaka groaned. She slumped so much in her seat that she looked like her true identity was actually that of a previously undiscovered species of invertebrate, beached and trapped by the oppression of the surface world. That only liquid could prevent her sluggish body’s termination by desiccation.

Looks like she’d be nosediving into that bottle of champagne after all.

Idly she looked to Enhance and wondered if vampires could drink alcohol without, like, suffering a reaction to it. He quirked his head in response. 


“That’s a beer stein you’re pouring that into, Rin.”

“I need this. I need all of this.”

“As I said, the only thing that could possibly judge anyone in this world doesn’t exist.”

#irony #usinghashtagstomakestatesments