1116: Kamen Rider Ryuki: A Rider’s Persona – Chapter One Part 1Posted: July 23, 2015
Title: Kamen Rider Ryuki: A Rider’s Persona
Author: Nero Angelo Sparda
Media: TV Shows/Video Games
Topic: Kamen Rider/Persona
URL: Kamen Rider Ryuki: A Rider’s Persona Chapter 1
Critiqued by Herr Wozzeck
Hello ladies and gents! Well, I hope you guys are strapped in well, ‘cause I think it’s time for a different story.
“But Herr, aren’t you already busy with that LimeyK guy?” Well, yes and no. Yes, because stuff happens all the time with crazy prose like that. But no, because… well, honestly, I think I need to alternate that with something else.
So while we do that, I thought we’d go to one of my fandoms that isn’t spotlighted a lot in fanfiction for whatever reason: Kamen Rider.
Be prepared, guys: I’m about to take a few pages from SC’s book.
So some of you might be wondering “Herr, what the fuck is Kamen Rider?”
Funny you should ask. Sit down!
Okay, so how many of you are at least passingly familiar with the concept of Power Rangers? Well, Power Rangers is essentially a thing that has footage cribbed from a Japanese show. That show? Super Sentai. You might know this if you keep up with Linkara’s History of Power Rangers series, and in fact it’s general knowledge for any hardcore Power Rangers fan.
Well, what if I told you that Super Sentai was only one show in a larger genre?
That’s right, ladies, we’re in tokusatsu territory here.
‘Cause the big thing? Kamen Rider is also a toku show, and is in fact one of the big three long-running shows of the toku genre (the other two being Super Sentai and Ultraman). Translated into English as Masked Rider, Kamen Rider has had iterations all through the history of toku.
So I’ll explain more about Kamen Rider in general. But to make a long story short, it’s essentially Super Sentai, if the main heroes did not join up into a team.
So what exactly is this fic? Well, according to the author:
Idea just came to me for this so i figured why the hell not.
Anyway this is a Person 4 X Kamen Rider Ryuki Crossover. There weren’t that many crossovers of this type so i figured why the heck not.
Now, when I checked this against the rest of the Kamen Rider/Persona crossovers, he’s actually not wrong. There are lots of Kamen Rider/Persona crossovers (and I’ll get into why I think that is in a later infodump), but the thing is that they are all different Kamen Rider series. Unlike Power Rangers, Kamen Rider doesn’t inhabit a shared continuity across all the series. Rather, each Kamen Rider series takes place in a different universe. Now, most of them were actually brought together for Kamen Rider Decade, but that’s a special case since Decade was a milestone special (it was the tenth series since the revival of Kamen Rider in the Heisei era of toku with Kuuga): otherwise, there is no overlap between series.
So I’ll give the author that one, because he’s right that there aren’t many (read: no) other crossovers of Ryuki with Persona.
Well i hope i didn’t screw this up.
Oh honey, you screwed the pooch royally. But how?
Well, I’ll fill you in on that personally, patrons. For now, let’s get started!
We open our first chapter with this:
Chapter 1: Rise of Ryuki
In Kyoto inside a large two story building a party was going on.
Author: it’s called a comma. Have you heard of it?
Also, hello awkward prose! I see we’re going to continue the awkward prose train that we got from The Great Rift, huh?
Most of the teenagers there were having a good time talking to one another, and enjoying the food, drinks, and the music. Keyword being most, one person here wasn’t having a good time at all.
Is this narration being conversational, or is it telling how things happened? Either way, consistency would be nice, pretty please.
A teenage boy about sixteen years old with slightly tanned skin, short messy black hair, and dark brown eyes.
A teenage boy about sixteen years old—
*runs over, hits button*
Okay, that’ll send in the monsters, meaning that…
*BOOM* *BOOM* *BOOM*
Aaaah, you gotta love those tokusplosions. Especially when they’re weaponized.
Anyway, a teenage boy with all that description did… what, exactly?
He was wearing a long black collared trench-coat over a red short-sleeved shirt. Around his neck he wore a silver chain that had a simple golden ring on it. He also wore blue jeans and brown boots. His name was Riku Yamato.
Well, not to be a sourpuss since I do genuinely appreciate the clarity after the clusterfuck of purple vagueness that is The Great Rift, but… is this prose seeming a little too daybook to anyone else?
Also, you still haven’t told me what it is he was doing, fic.
Riku looked at the people partying as he took another sip of his drink.
Ah, thank you.
So he’s looking at all of them, and not enjoying himself. I wonder what that means…
He honestly found this pretty boring even though so many people were enjoying themselves and was uncomfortable around all these people.
*looks out the door*
Oh, right, I forgot: Swenia only barks if the prose is purple and awkward, rather than just awkward. Right.
Seriously, dude, what the hell is this? Run-on sentence, the subject becomes unclear, there may be a verb/subject disagreement in there (though I can’t tell since the subject seems to change twice)…
What the hell is this!?
He hardly knew anybody here, only knowing his friend Taizo that asked him to meet him here.
And in response to that, he decided to just sit in the corner sipping his drink.
Oh dear, let me guess: this guy is the troubled loner who doesn’t want to make friends, isn’t he?
He had thought that he would just be meeting Taizo here, but he never expected him to ask him to meet up at a party. He had almost left right after he asked him to meet him, but Taizo had asked him to stay at least for awhile to try and enjoy it.
What is it with fanfiction authors and their obsession with this type of character? By this point, the troubled loner has become a huge cliché that is incredibly uninteresting. Especially when they’re not even done well, as is the case with most of these loners here.
Well, the best I can hope for at this point is that he doesn’t start going on philosophical tangents about life, the universe, and everything.
Riku sighed as he looked at the partying people and reached into his pocket and pulled out his Iphone to check the time. He saw that he had been here for a little over a hour. He looked over at Taizo and saw that he was talking to a girl, who was laughing at a joke that he must’ve said. Taizo had long brown hair and was wearing a white button-up dress shirt with the sleeves rolled up, blue pants and white sneakers.
*puts his head on his desk, starts snoring*
Deciding enough was enough Riku placed his drink on the counter and made his way to the door. Taizo looked at Riku and saw that he was leaving, Taizo told the girl that he would be back in a minute and chased after his friend.
*is poked by one of the ninjas*
Wha-what? How doth the little crocodile improve his shining—?
Oh, goddammit. Sorry, I just got lulled to sleep by how terribly daybook this prose is.
I mean, wow. I go right from purple prose that is somehow also beige at the same time, to just plain daybook prose. This prose is just like… It’s like this author intentionally gave the scene to a freaking robot to read, it’s so boring!
Well, I gotta find a way to make this interesting somehow, right?
So here, have some party hats and tequila. You might want to take shots and stuff.
When Riku got outside he made his way to his black and red motorcycle cruiser.
Um… The motorcycle cruiser?
*goes to Uncle Google*
Okay… So apparently, most commercially available cruiser motorcycles (not motorcycle cruiser, author) tend to sport engines ranging from 500cc to 1000cc. There are exceptions, but that is a general rule of thumb. All right.
So how does that apply to—
Welp, I hope that’s one of those 250cc cruiser motorcycle models that you can get. If it isn’t, congratulations: Riku is officially starting this fic by breaking Japanese driving laws!
Congratulations, author! Have your “Did Not Do Research” medal right here!
He had earned the bike by paying for half of it and by having to have all A’s for his last school semester. It wasn’t cheap and he had to work hard to earn it, but it was definitely worth it to him in the end.
Okay, and how exactly did he get half the money to get that bike, anyway? And who provided the remaining half, anyway? Because if you’re going to stop the narrative for a second to tell us information that probably isn’t really all that relevant anyway, you might as well go all the way, you know?
“Hey Riku where are you going?” Taizo asked, making Riku stop and turn around to look at Taizo, and saw that he was looking at him questioningly.
Looking at him questioningly? And what, pray tell, is that supposed to mean? Did he quirk his eyebrows? Did he tilt his head to the side? What, author? What is a “questioning look”?
And also, oof. You might want to get that run-on sentence checked. Next thing you know, you’ll be graduating to sentenceographs.
“I’m leaving, heading back to my place,” Riku answered.
Crunchy! Send out more toku villains!
*BOOM* *BOOM* *BOOM* *BOOM*
Ah, gotta love the smell of tokusplosions in the morning. Smells like victory.
“Dude come on we haven’t been here that long,” Taizo said.
“We’ve been here for over a hour and I haven’t had any fun,” Riku said.
Well, that would’ve been easily solved if you had just up and mingled a bit, you know what I’m saying? But no, “troubled loner”.
Well, I’m glad we can add “whiny” to the list of things that this character is. Seriously, kid, do you even realize how whiny you sound right now? Especially since this would’ve solved itself if you had bothered to, I dunno, engage anyone in conversation?
“Dude lighten up, I brought you here to relax and besides I’ve seen the looks that some of the girls have sent you and saw some of them talk to you,” trying to convince Riku to stay.
Holy hell, Taizo must have the lung capacity of a motherfucking blue whale if he was able to say that much without stopping to take a breath! Seriously, that’s some fucking amazing lung capacity there!
And really? “Trying to convince Riku to stay”? Well, author, thank you for spelling that out for us idiot plebians! We totally would never have guessed that he was trying to convince Riku to stay from the fact that he said ‘lighten up’, or to bring up those girls this fic only now decided to tell us about! Nope, we could never have figured out that part from the context at all!
It wasn’t exactly a lie, some girls had came up and talked to him and some were giving him the look, but they weren’t his type.
They were giving him “the look”… even though that look would hint towards actions that are technically illegal under the obscenity ordinances that Japanese prefectures have.
Also, author: semicolons! Have you heard of them?
He could tell that they were just curious about him.
That, or they just wanted a feel for the trench coat that he’s wearing for whatever stupid reason this author can come up with. Come on, don’t tell me you didn’t buy a trench coat without knowing that trench coats are powerful aphrodesiacs!
“I’ve tried for a hour to relax and I’ve gotten more tense since I came here.
So who wants to take the first crack at reading that line in Christian Bale’s Batman voice? Anyone?
Taizo, I’m heading back to my house,” Riku said. He got onto his motorcycle and put on his helmet,
“I’m gonna go back and play some Chroma Squad! That’ll be fun!”
the helmet, covering most of his face from view as he stared at Taizo through the glass.
Thank you, author, for clarifying that motorcycle helmets cover a large portion of a person’s face. I’m sure that would never be seen as a gesture that insults the intelligence of anyone with more than two brain cells to rub together! No-siree-bob!
Taizo sighed when he heard them say that, taking note of the tone of finality in the way he said it.
What? But that wasn’t Taizo’s line! How the hell is Taizo speaking with a tone of finality?
Oh! I got it! It’s because Taizo said something that wasn’t included in the fic! Here, let me provide what he said:
“Alright fine, see you later. God knows I can’t change your mind when you make it up,” Tazio said.
“Right see you,” Riku said. He then placed his key in the ignition and started it, making the engine roar to life as he drove off, making his way back to his house.
Run-on sentences are going to be one of your trademarks, aren’t they?
Oh, come on!
As Riku drove back home he couldn’t help, but think about how much Taizo had changed over the years.
And that comma was unneeded.
*yoinks comma, drops it in the spare punctuation box*
Man, it’s been a long while since we’ve put one of these things to work! Hooray!
Back when they were younger they would always get along and look out for one another like bothers in arms, but as the years passed the more things changed.
And of course, you didn’t think to show us this crap, now, did you? Because why have a flashback to show how close these two characters are when you can always use narration to tell us how things used to be?
Taizo became more social with others and became more popular, more crowded by individuals that he hardly knew about and nowhere near as long as he did.
So Taizo likes to populate his social circles with people he doesn’t know? I can’t see that being a particularly good strategy to get friends. I wonder why you haven’t pointed out that maybe filling his social circles with people he doesn’t know is kind of a terrible idea…
As he got more popular the harder it was for them to meet up and hang out like old times, but it didn’t change.
So things changed, but then they didn’t? Which one is it, author? Did they change, or did they not change?
When he got that text from Taizo he had thought that they would finally have a chance to hang out and catch up without anyone else around them, needless to say that he was surprised when he saw Taizo waiting for him outside a house that had a party going on.
Okay, to Riku’s credit, that is kind of a dick move of Taizo to be like “hey, let’s catch up” while omitting the part where he’s at a party. If you’re going to go to a party with a friend, you should at least make it clear that it’s a party!
‘Taizo what changed between us?’ Riku thought to himself, wondering why their friendship had decayed to the point that they hardly knew anything about one another anymore as the years passed.
Well, Riku, you went the way of most uninteresting loner clichés, and he decided he couldn’t follow that.
And yes, author, thank you for spelling out that Riku was wondering about the deterioration of their friendship. I totally could not have figured that out from the fact that he asked what changed between the two of them. Nope, that doesn’t provide enough context for us to figure out what he’s thinking!
Well, it’s official: this author thinks we’re idiots. Hooray!
When he got home he saw a man standing in front of his house by the window, making his eyes narrow, as he studied the man.
Okay, author, you know what? Here’s a trade secret: you’re allowed to use proper nouns to avoid pronoun confusion.
You know what you’re not allowed to do? You’re not allowed to use run-on sentences! Seriously, dude, all these run-ons can’t be good for your health!
The man had dark black shaggy hair and wore a long light brown coat over a grey sweater shirt, black pants and boots.
Seriously, this author has described everyone’s clothing. Everyone. It’s like clothing porn, only the daybook version of it. Seriously, why the hell do you think we care about the things particular characters are wearing?
Riku stopped a few feet away from the man in case, he were to pull out a weapon or they something.
First of all, that comma does not belong there.
*lifts comma, puts it into the spare punctuation box*
Second of all, really? In case he were to pull out a weapon? You better hope that weapon isn’t a gun, mister, or no matter what you do you’re fucking screwed. And getting a few feet close to the other guy? With a trench coat? Yeah, being that distance would probably give mystery man here good leverage to grab you and pull you into a knife. You might want to stand farther than that, you know.
“Hello is there something that you need? If you’re looking for my dad then come back later, he won’t be home for awhile,” Riku said, studying the man.
Um… why would Riku be under the impression that Mystery Man is looking for Riku’s father? Wouldn’t logic dictate that this wouldn’t be the case if he’s standing outside your home in the middle of the night?
Huh. Apparently, Riku has sniffed whatever glue that you’d need to take to want to keep reading this daybook prose by this point and unironically enjoy it.
“You are Riku Yamato correct?” The man asked, making Riku tense that the man knew his name.
“Yeah I’m Riku, what do you want?” Riku asked curtly, not liking how the man knew his name.
Crunchy! More tokusplosions, please!
*BOOM* *BOOM* *BOOM* *BOOM* *BOOM*
“My name is Shiro Kanzaki, I have a offer for you,” he said, his voice devoid of all emotion.
I suppose you’re going to offer the ‘n’ that’s missing from your own adjective. Or are you going to offer that to yourself, since that’s technically in your speech?
“Whatever you have to offer me I don’t want it,” Riku said,
Smart man, Riku. Smart man. Now just turn towards the house, enter it, and call the police. It won’t do jack shit considering this is Shirou Kanzaki you’re talking about here, but—
taking off his helmet to get a better look at him.
Aaaand, you just lost the redemption cookie I was about to give you. Good job, mister.
“Riku you don’t have a choice,” Shiro said, making Riku glare at him as he got off of his motorcycle.
Wait, what? What the hell do you mean?
“What the hell do you mean?” Riku said.
Yeah! I mean, granted, Riku doesn’t quite know the magnitude of the problems that Shirou’s saying “you don’t have a choice” brings up, but hey, it’s something!
“You will listen to my offer and you make a choice,” Shiro said.
Shirou, you literally just said “you don’t have a choice”. Literally one fucking line of dialogue later, you say “you make a choice”. So does he get to make a choice, or does he not get to make a choice? Pick one and stick with it!
“No way in hell,” Riku said.
Good, Riku, ‘cause you do not want to accept any offers from Shirou. Now just walk away and—
He then threw his fist, intending to hit Shiro’s face.
Ooooooor, you can try to punch Shirou in the face for no reason whatsoever, provoke him into a fight, during which he will probably pull out that weapon you were so afraid of him using to attack you earlier.
Well, Riku, it was nice knowing you. Have fun being left for dead!
Before his fist could connect with Shiro’s face a red and gold armored hand grabbed his arm. Riku turned toward the source and saw figure covered in golden armor, but before he could get a better look at the figure the man had punched him in the face, knocking him out cold.
You see? That’s why you don’t attack creeps, even if they get too personal.
Shiro waved his hand and a grey wall appeared in the yard and the armored figure then picked Riku up and slung him over his shoulder like a sack of potatoes.
“The bike to,” Shiro said, motioning his head to the bike. The man nodded his head and grabbed one of the handles on the motorcycle and pushed it through the portal, the helmet still on the bike. Shiro followed the armored figure as he walked into the portal, the portal closing behind him when he walked through it.
What? So Shirou just created a portal from thin air that he could walk through. Shirou Kanzaki—fucking Shirou Kanzaki—just created a portal from fucking nothing!?
Ladies and gentlemen, our author has already fucked up immensely. Which means it’s time for infodump number one of this installment!
Okay, so most of you might be wondering just who the hell Shirou is and why I’ve been telling Riku he’s smart for refusing Shirou’s offer. Well, that’s because Shirou Kanzaki is the closest thing that Kamen Rider Ryuki has to a Big Bad.
How? Well, I guess it’s pertinent to start by saying that, in typical toku fashion, the characters of Kamen Rider Ryuki have to fight monsters. The source of the monsters is different in every Kamen Rider series, but the way it works in Ryuki is this: they all come from mirrors.
No, seriously. The monsters inhabit a dimension placed entirely within reflective surfaces. Cars, windows, mirrors, water… anything that has a reflective surface holds the monsters in Ryuki. It’s a place called Mirror World, and the monsters only ever leave it to feast on humans. The Kamen Riders of this series can also enter Mirror World any time they transform, so pretty much all of the fights in the series take place in Mirror World.
Now, the monsters aren’t the only things that can inhabit Mirror World. See, Shirou has been running around Mirror World for quite some time, and Ryuki makes it a long-running plot thread that the characters are investigating why Shirou is in there and what he wants. All we know, is that he finally found a way to inhabit Mirror World without vanishing, which is the fate of pretty much every other human character who enters Mirror World untransformed. Thus, he tends to use it to warp everywhere.
But you know one of the things that the series makes a huge deal of? The only warping that can be done is from reflective surfaces. You need a reflective surface to get into Mirror World, and you cannot leave Mirror World without a reflective surface. Normally, you would have to use the same surface you used to get into Mirror World to get out of Mirror World, but Shirou is a special case in that he can get out of Mirror World using any surface he damn well pleases.
That said, he still needs a reflective surface. Like a window.
You know, the one that was right behind you, Shirou? The one you conveniently ignored when you used an ability you don’t actually have in the series!?
Yup, this author screwed up big time.
And the best part? This isn’t even the biggest screw-up related to Shirou Kanzaki! Observe:
When Riku opened his eyes the first thing that he noticed was that he was on hard concrete and his back was to a wall.
“What the hell? Where am I?” Riku questioned.
You’re apparently in Mirror World now. How the hell you’re not currently dissolving into Mirror World is anyone’s guess, really.
He got up from the ground and realized that he was in a alleyway.
“An” alleyway, author. “An”.
Get that right!
“Riku,” a familiar voice said, making Riku tense as soon as he heard the voice. Riku turned around and saw the very same man was at his house before he woke up in the alley way and had to suppress the urge to attack him.
Jesus Christ, dude, take a fucking breath if you don’t mind! That’s a hell of a flurry of thoughts to throw in one fucking sentence! Jesus!
The man wasn’t alone, that much was true since someone else had knocked him out before he could hit him.
“Even if you get back to Kyoto you will not be able to home,” Shiro said, making Riku look at him suspiciously.
He will not be able to home? Well of course he won’t be able to home! He was too busy brooding about his friendship with Taizo to learn how to take care of a home! Duh!
“What do you mean?” Riku questioned.
“Even f you get back to Kyoto you not be home. You’re no longer in your world,” Shiro told him.
Um, Shirou, you do remember how Mirror World works, right? You’re kind of defeating your own plans if you’re bringing him in here for longer than, oh, I dunno, ten seconds? You’re the one who did the most research on Mirror World, you should know this shit!
Riku’s eyes widened as he looked straight at Shiro’s face, looking for any signs that he was lying to him.
He found none.
And what signs would you be looking for? For fuck’s sake, you’re a sixteen-year-old dumbass with a penchant for Batman impressions! How would you be able to know he’s lying by looking at him? Especially considering that, barring a few exceptions related to one of Ryuki’s other major characters, Shirou is basically a stoic whose expressions you can’t fucking read!
“You bastard! Send me back!” Riku yelled angrily.
He says, not realizing that won’t do jack shit.
Shiro just stared as Riku for a moment as he pulled a black deck.
“If you want to get back to your world then fight,” Shirou told him calmly, holding out the deck for him to take. Riku glared at Shiro as he reluctantly took the deck from him.
“Fine, I’ll fight,” Riku said curtly.
Well, Riku just solidified himself as an epic Gary Stu. Probably also a self-insert Stu, if we’re being totally honest here. Why?
Well, before I do that, I’ll go ahead and let Shirou explain a few things first:
“The deck that I just gave you is known as an Advent Deck.
Okay… Go on.
With it you can enter the Mirror World you will only be able to remain there for a certain amount of time and will know this when your armor begins to disintegrate, when that happens you can only leave through the way that you came in from.
Ladies and gentlemen, all that was one fucking sentence. I know that Japanese tends to be a fairly fast-paced language, but nobody on the face of the planet is going to have enough breath to finish a sentence like that even if they spoke it like they were singing a fucking patter song!
Nobody will be able to see you and the Mirror Monsters inside the Mirror World aside from the other Kamen Riders,” Shirou explained.
What Riku should say: “Pardon me? What are Kamen Riders, and how does the Advent Deck play into it?”
What he actually says: nothing.
“You will not only fighting other Kamen Riders, but also the monsters that dwell inside there as well. If you do not feed whatever Monster you make a contract with then it will eat you,” Shiro said, making Riku’s eyes widen.
Okay, Shirou normally doesn’t get into this much detail explaining how the Kamen Riders work to prospective Kamen Riders, but okay…
“Riku the monsters inside the Mirror World will feed on you and the other Kamen Riders along with the civilians,” Shiro said, noticing Riku’s surprise.
Okay, Shirou definitely doesn’t bring up civilians when offering to make someone a Kamen Rider. This just keeps getting worse and worse by the second!
Riku nodded his head, realizing that he would now have more to worry about then other Riders trying to kill him, but also the Mirror Monsters trying to feed on the people.
“Remember Riku Yamato. If you do not fight, you will not survive,” Shiro told him. “Oh and one more thing, just because you are in another world, does not mean that you do not exist here.” He then walked into the large mirror behind him and entered the Mirror World.
Wait, so this scene wasn’t actually in Mirror World? So where the hell was it taking place, if it wasn’t taking place in…
‘What did he mean by that,’ Riku thought to himself, wondering what Shirou meant by that last bit of information.
He means, good sir, that this is a self-insert fanfic, you’ve just been pulled from your own world into the universe of Kamen Rider Ryuki (something that was very poorly explained, author), and you’ve just confirmed that you are a self-insert Stu who is epic enough to make Kye Jen weep in jealousy.
Well, ladies and gentlemen, you may be wondering “but why? Why is he an epic Stu?” Well, to be fair, he’s more a Stu according to the PPC’s definition of it, in that he fucked the Kamen Rider Ryuki universe to make himself more special. Seriously. We’ve only just started this fic, and Shirou Kanzaki has already been pulled COMPLETELY out of character so our precious little Stu here can get into the Ryuki-verse!
Why? Well, it’s related to Mirror World, the Advent Decks, and why Shirou himself is in Mirror World.
Okay, so to fill in a few holes in this piss-poor explanation that Shirou gave Riku-Stu here: the Advent Decks are what allow you to transform into a Kamen Rider in the Ryuki verse. The way you get to be a Kamen Rider is by making a contract with one of the monsters in Mirror World, the caveat being that you have to feed the monster. In turn, though, the monster gives your Advent Deck cards you can pull out at any time to use special moves.
Like the Final Vent, which is a finishing move. Here, have a montage of all the Final Vents in the series:
But believe it or not, there’s a huge thing Shirou forgot to mention to Riku-Stu: that would be the explanation as to why the Kamen Riders are all fighting each other. See, the reason they’re fighting each other is that there’s a game of “Last Man Standing” that all the Kamen Riders enter into: the Kamen Riders fight each other to the death, because right at the end of the road, the last remaining Kamen Rider gets to fight Kamen Rider Odin.
If they defeat Odin, they get to have a wish granted. If Odin wins… well, more on that in a bit.
Now, that’s the important part. The wish. See, Shirou essentially goes around offering contracts to people that want something badly enough to enter the Rider War. He goes to people that want something, offers them that something if they participate in the Rider War, and then facilitates the contracting process.
Essentially, think of Shirou as Kyubey. (Which is actually more apropos than you might think, considering comments the Urobutcher has made in the past about Ryuki.)
Now, you might be thinking “but Herr, this is Shirou offering something to Riku-Stu, how is he out of character”. Well, the reason Shirou is out of character here is because of Riku-Stu’s wish. See, the way this fic frames Riku-Stu’s wish is that he wants to go home. Granted, it does an absolutely shit job of setting that up, but whatever, he falls into the typical SI plot of being pulled into an alternate dimension and wanting to go home.
Problem is, he would never have gotten the will to want this if Shirou hadn’t pulled him into the Ryuki universe in the first place. So essentially, it’s a situation where Shirou intentionally gave a Rider something to wish for.
Now, Shirou is shown throughout the series to be one hell of a manipulative bastard. Perhaps the best indication to that effect is that it’s revealed very late in the series that Kamen Rider Odin is Shirou’s puppet, and that Shirou’s been stacking the odds against all the other Riders so he can get his own wish granted. That wish? Well… that would be going into spoiler territory, and while Ryuki is technically fourteen ears old by this point, it’s one of those series that really is best appreciated if you go into the last five episodes unspoiled.
But point is, he can be manipulative.
You know what he’s not manipulative enough to do? He’s not manipulative enough to force a scenario where the prospective Rider makes a wish because of something he’s done.
Well… not intentionally, anyway. The only argument you could kind of make for that statement would be for Kamen Rider Knight.
Kamen Rider Knight’s real identity is Ren Akiyama.
Ren contracted to save his comatose fiancée.
Now, can you make the argument that Shirou engineered the events responsible for Ren contracting? Possibly. See, Ren’s fiancée was one of the lab workers in one of Shirou’s experiments about Mirror World. The reason she’s comatose in the first place was because she was attacked by a Mirror World monster that Shirou managed to summon into the real world with the help of a couple of unwitting scientists. (On a side note, it was also the monster that Ren contracted with, so… yeah, that gets awkward in-series too.) So did Shirou cause the events that caused Ren to contract? Yes.
But it’s implied by the series itself that it was less Shirou intentionally setting up events so Ren could contract, and more a coincidence that played into Shirou’s hands. It’s implied that Ren’s fiancée was the only one of that group who knew Ren’s existence: so if no one else really knew Ren, there’s no way Shirou would have known.
Also, Ren’s desire to protect his fiancée comes from his own love for her. So even if Shirou had engineered these events, the wish came from Ren.
And that is the important part. Why? Well…. Let’s turn to some of the other Kamen Riders in Ryuki. Like Kamen Rider Zolda.
Kamen Rider Zolda’s real identity is Shuichi Kitaoka.
Kitaoka is a high-profile defense lawyer who has all the money in the world, fame, and anything you could ever want. Only problem? He kind of has a terminal disease. So his wish is to get eternal life/youth.
Or what about Kamen Rider Gai?
His identity is Jun Shibaura.
He’s a student at a college who makes video games. He also treats life as one big video game, and his wish is to win at that game.
Or what about Kamen Rider Imperer?
His real identity is Mitsuru Sano.
Wha—no, not that Mitsuru!
There ya go! Jeez, bloody interns can’t do their jobs sometimes…
Anyway, he’s a Kamen Rider, mostly as a function of being a rich guy. Now, he wants the same thing that Kitaoka has: fame, money, attention… So Shirou grabs on to that, and Sano becomes a Kamen Rider for that reason.
So see, there’s kind of a recurring thread going on here: Shirou finds someone with a wish, they’re fundamentally selfish wishes, and he contracts with them. In almost none of these circumstances is there any finagling done by Shirou to make them wish for the thing he contracts them for. Even in the exceptions that you find sometimes in the series, it’s Shirou taking advantage of a selfish desire that’s already present in the prospective Rider.
In other words, the thing they want to wish for is already intrinsic in pretty much all of the Riders. Shirou never, ever plants the desire for that wish into the person he offers the contract to.
Hence, why Riku-Stu here has pretty much fucked Shirou’s characterization from the get-go. In order to get Riku-Stu into the Kamen Rider universe, our author basically had Shirou interfere in a way he never would. In contrast to pretty much all of the other Riders, Riku-Stu’s wish was a wish that came to his mind specifically because of something Shirou did. And I don’t mean that in the same way you could argue it for Ren where Shirou was playing on a happy coincidence; I mean that in the way that Riku-Stu would have no reason to wish to go home if Shirou hadn’t basically abducted him from his home and directly made him wish to go home!
*BAM* *BAM* *BAM* *BAM*
Author, you have no idea just how badly you fucked up. Because you want to know the truly sad thing? The sad thing about all this is that the base line for the wish makes perfect sense! And in fact, if you had handled this any other way, it would’ve probably been much more interesting!
See, on a conceptual level, it would actually make for a damn compelling story to see a self-insert character get pulled into the Ryuki universe. “I just want to go home” is the stuff that Shirou’s dreams are made of, especially since there would likely be no other way to get home in the Ryuki universe: in other words, that kind of wish would be a perfect ticket to get a contract to become a Kamen Rider. And from there? Yeah, you’d be able to wring in some great character development as this guy undergoes the horrors of the Rider War! There’s all sorts of really interesting places you could take a self-insert in the Ryuki universe! And honestly, if handled well, I’d be all for it.
But in order to get your character into the Ryuki universe, you basically made Shirou do something he would never consider. And considering that, you don’t give me very much faith in where you’re going to take this.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is the kind of thing that makes a dimensional portal built by the Protheans look logical.
And ladies and gentlemen, I would like to remind you guys of the following: not only are we not even halfway through the first chapter yet, but we also haven’t even APPROACHED the point where Persona 4 enters the picture!
This is gonna be a long one, isn’t it?