1300: Fire Emblem: ReAwaken – Chapter TwelvePosted: January 14, 2016
Title: Fire Emblem: ReAwaken
Media: Video Game
Topic: Fire Emblem
URL: Chapter 12
Critiqued by Herr Wozzeck, Sterling Bengtzing, Agundio Atti-Morales, and Crunchy Raptor
Agundio Atti-Morales: And then he murdered his brother?
AAM: Despite all of the verses that tell you specifically that killing your brother is not alright that would lie in the face of his fundamentalist leanings?
AAM: … That is… I don’t think I have quite the right words to describe that.
Sterling Bengtzing: Fucked. Up.
AAM: You know, I think I agree with that.
SB: Ja. There’s being loud and proud, and then there’s… whatever the fuck was that.
Crunchy: Indeed. I would not even approach the cur.
AAM: I… think I’m fine, then. I’d rather not hear any more of this Thomas Brown person than I’ve heard already.
Well, it’s just as well, because it’s time for today’s installment of Fire Emblem: ReAwaken.
And on that note, hello ladies and gentlemen, and welcome back to the Library. Well, folks, with any luck, today Bifocals can finally get these two out of here. But in the meantime… well, we have this chapter here. So we’re going to go ahead and snark it.
We start our latest chapter with this:
“We’re under attack!” Daven screamed as he raced down towards the entrance. “Everyone, we’re under attack! Get ready for battle!” He ignored the looks that several of the men and women of the monastery were giving him, knowing that if he slowed down to try and explain what was going on, they wouldn’t have time.
C: And why, pray tell, would you need to? I assume ‘we’re under attack’ is enough explanation.
SB: Eh, they probably think he’s just pulling an elaborate prank or some shit.
AAM: But it would rather be a cruel prank, no? And one I don’t think Daven can pull off anyway.
SB: That’s just what I was thinking. He ain’t that much of a fuckup, especially when compared with some of the other basics in this crap.
“Arm up and meet me out fron- oof!” He stopped and nearly tripped over himself as a figure clad in brown suddenly ran in front of his path, the butt of his spear sticking him in his stomach. “Ah, gods… Albert, what are you doing?” he asked, rubbing the spot where a bruise was surely forming.
Hopefully he’s going out to kick Kale’s ass.
Anyway, Albert says he noticed what was going on, and then he comments on how the Plegians managed to get so many people on Ylissean soil. He then is all “oh, and where’s Kale”, to which Daven is like “and why do you care?” And Albert says…
“No, it’s just… Look, I don’t have time to explain why I acted the way I did towards Kale, alright? Just know that I don’t hate him… Okay, I don’t hate him completely. That’s why I wanted to know where he’s at, to tell him that.”
Yay, easy forgiveness!
AAM: But that is a good thing, is it not?
Aggie, you know better than anyone that forgiveness is sometimes earned, and I’m pretty sure Kale didn’t earn it from Albert. Especially not after the back-handed way he addressed real concerns.
AAM: Hm… That is indeed true.
SB: Well shit, you got the nun to not forgive, do I give ya a medal?
Anyway, Daven then is all “Kale’s out there alone with the enemy”, and then Albert follows him outside. Albert whistles for Alexandria and mounts her to meet Kale.
C: And what on earth would that accomplish?
Unit cohesion as related to Fire Emblem unit types? I don’t fucking know, apparently gameplay trumps all when you’re telling people to get on the field.
“What is he doing?” Albert muttered as they watched Kale addressing the enemy force.
“In the name of Arashi, I will crush you!” Kale shouted, pulling a sword from its sheath. A blinding white light enveloped him, forcing Albert to shield his eyes.
C: And here is where we rejoin the narrative. Whatever has Kale gotten himself involved in now?
“Kale!” Daven and, surprisingly, Albert both cried. Albert heard the sound of footsteps to his side, followed by labored breathing, and realized that Daven had caught up with him. “Oh gods…” he muttered, shielding his eyes from the light. Slowly, it began to fade, revealing Kale to be standing in front of them completely unharmed and appeared to seemingly be normal. The sword he wielded, however, was anything but normal: its dull gray blade was stained with patches of dark red along the length of it, the blade itself looking more akin to a butcher’s knife than a sword. The hilt was covered in bandages that wrapped around Kale’s right hand and trailed along the ground. Hearing his name, Kale twisted his head around to look at the two of them, his eyes making their blood go cold. They were devoid of any emotion and appeared to lack life itself. “K-Kale?” Daven took a step towards the young swordsman, only for Albert to place the shaft of his spear in front of him.
SB: He made a deal with the devil, didn’t he?
AAM: I… I suppose he did.
“Wait, something’s off here.” Daven rolled his eyes at how obvious the statement was but he made no comment.
I dunno, Daven, I wouldn’t be rolling my eyes there. Especially not considering that this is now starting to look like an entirely different kind of bad than what SC had in mind.
C: You do not mean…?
Yep. I think this is the point where this fic is going to jump the shark.
Lackey McEvil steps forward and taunts Kale a bit before being like “surrender or else”. Of course, as soon as he gives the order to attack, Kale crosses, and then Daven steps forward. But then…
To say it was vicious and brutal would be an understatement. Lifting the large blade like it weighed nothing, Kale cut straight through the line of defenders, their blood staining the blade together with the red patches. A man attempted to stab Kale with his spear from behind, only to have his arms lopped off before the tip of the weapon was run straight through his chest. Another man screamed in agony and dropped his axe as his stomach fell onto the ground in front of him, and yet another man was unable to even make a sound as Kale brought the blade down on his head, cutting deeply into it. As the last of the defenders fell to his blade, Kale stopped and looked around, his eyes still devoid of any emotion.
… Is now the part where I mention that I hate being genre savvy sometimes?
SB: Ja, sure, I guess…
I mean, seriously. What the fuck does this have to do with Fire Emblem? Fire Emblem is a series about political intrigue that involves wars that eventually turns into the main lord character going on a quest to save the world with his armies! And here we have this little dumbass kid getting a hold of some super-powerful sword with a conscience that allows him to own entire fucking armies. This isn’t Fire Emblem, this is goddamn God of War!
C: I distinctly remember God of War lacking weapons that spoke to the wielders.
Still! It’s a selfish dumbass slaying armies and armies of people with incredibly graphic gore! It’s about the same tone!
At this point, the monks from the monastery had caught up with Daven and Albert. Several of them were uttering quiet prayers at the very sight while others forced themselves to keep from looking away. A cold laugh erupted from Kale, surprising everyone, though what he said next made everyone, even the Plegians, flinch.
“So, this is what true power feels like… The ability to crush any who oppose me, without any fear or worry of death… I could create an entirely new world with this blade, one devoid of people who would harm me… In fact, that’s a wonderful idea. Once I’m done here, what’s stopping me from going out and making the world one where I have no fear? Yes, I like that idea, I like it quite a bit.” He hefted the blade onto his shoulder and looked towards the Plegians. “Now, who’s the next person on the chopping block?” Before any of them could react, he threw himself forwards.
AAM: That is… quite a lot of evil.
SB: This is the King of the Basics? …How and when the FUCK?! Okay, this shitty thing is fucking with us.
Daven and Albert shared a quick look before throwing themselves into the maelstrom caused by their ally, though this time, it wasn’t to save him from the Plegians.
They were going to do everything in their power to save him from that blade.
C: Please do. I do not like Lackey McEvil any more than you do, but I would much rather dispose of him myself than to watch you dispose of him in… this manner.
No kidding. This is just… I don’t even know.
AAM: Isn’t it also rather surprising that these monks never thought to hide this blade away?
C: What do you mean?
AAM: Well, if this blade had that evil contained in it, don’t you think it would make more sense to hide it away in case the chosen one to wield it should ever come?
SB: You kidding? Of course they wouldn’t think that! How the hell were they supposed to know it was a blade that could talk to people if the King of the Basics was the only one to hear it? Fuck, even Akako Tsubasa would have been a better listener!
AAM: You mentioned its first appearance was in a display case in a library, correct? What other weapons were described alongside it?
… Actually, now that Aggie mentions it, I don’t think there were other weapons around it. In fact, I don’t think the library got any description other than the fact that it was a library!
AAM: So they had to know this blade was special, given where they stored it. And again, it’s a monastery: monasteries typically did a lot of work to preserve older writings, surely they must’ve preserved something that could have told them about this sword!
Except not, because Arashi doesn’t exist in this world.
C: But hold, even that is not the dumbest thing about this.
SB: Yeah! Didn’t dipshit here stumble into it after he got separated from that other guy?
He did! And it made absolutely no sense how they split up, except as a convenient excuse for Kale to run into it! Which is notable, since, for all the fuck-ups that Daven supposedly has done, he didn’t lead Kale directly to this sword!
AAM: So this whole setup is incredibly contrived, and for no reason!
Well, actually, there is a reason: because guess what? Classic self-insert trap!
C: This rather overcomes anything in Subject 23.
SB: Really? This is worse than the guy who had genes that went kaput off the gene pool for no reason?
This is the POV character who the sword said was chosen by fate to be the Harbinger of some deity that was never mentioned in the games. Are you really asking that?
SB: Just saying, you nerds really have to check your raking of bad shit.
It’s about the same level of breaking canon to make your character extra special! I mean, you can’t get much more masturbatory than this! What’s next, is it going to turn out he’s not in control of his own body and he’ll need to do some bullshit test of character to get his body back?
“Oh, my head…” I mutter as I get up from the ground, the soft grass making for a surprisingly comfortable bed. For some reason, my head feels like its been split open with an axe, a possibility which I quickly dismiss after running my hand through my hair. You can’t really be too careful in a world like this.
C: Or he will wake up. At least it did not—
It’s not over ‘til the fat lady sings, Crunchy. Let’s just sit back and see what happens…
Kale traces his steps back to try to figure out what happened, and of course as soon as h epicks up the blade to see…
And the monastery no longer exists. I feel my eyes expand to the size of dinner plates at the ruins of the monastery. Entire chunks of stone have been torn from the walls and small fires are still burning. I can smell what smells like burnt meat, making me really thankful that I skipped last night’s dinner and breakfast this morning. “What the hell happened? I-I thought I’d protected it! Why-why is it destroyed?!” I shout. My voice echoes around me, causing me to realize the truly strange thing about this place: there’s no sound. I tap the sheathed blade against the earth and jump as I hear the thud it makes echo. “Something’s seriously off here…” I mutter to myself.
SB: … Oh shit, don’t tell me you’re actually right about this…
“No shit, Sherlock!”
Wait, who said- there! My heart skips a beat as I see a figure standing in front of the doors leading to the monastery ruins, his figure- at least, it looks a lot like a guy- silhouetted by the fires. “Hey, who are-” The moment I open my mouth, he turns around and charges straight into the fire. I blink in surprise before running after him. I don’t plan on losing my only lead as to what’s happening around here. I run through the doors of the monastery, shielding my face from the flames…
And now it’s raining.
I open my eyes and, instead of seeing a burning monastery, a mountain covered in storm clouds sits before my eyes.
AAM: I… I believe this is a dream, Sterling.
SB: Wait what now?
C: And you had the audacity to say you had stepped into “roofieland” when you first came here!
If I turn around… I twist my head to look at where the- oh, what do you know, the doors aren’t there anymore. …Alright, where’s the sign that says ‘Welcome to Mind-Fuck City’? Because that would be seriously appropriate right now!
SB: Even more appropriate than the punch to the face you’re getting?
AAM: Oh, come now, Sterling! Surely you know violence is unnecessary!
SB: Tell that to my parents when I used to fuck up as a cub… Herrejävlar…
Uneasily, I look back towards the mountain, when a brief flash of lightning illuminates a figure standing at the edge of a small cliff. Halfway up the mountain. Because, of course, it had to be halfway up a mountain. One does not simply… That quote doesn’t quite apply here, I suppose. Damn, I’ve never had a chance to use it… Sighing, my eyes fall to the ground, landing on a step that’s been cut into the rock. I let my eyes travel up the steps and my heart sinks as I realize I’ve got a lot of climbing in my immediate future. “I’m going to be dead by the time this is over, aren’t I?” I murmur before, quite literally, taking the first step.
I can’t help but let out a bitter chuckle as I see a sign appear with the next flash of lighting on the side of the path proudly declaring: ‘Welcome to Mind-Fuck City.’
I think you mean “Shark Jump City”.
SB: Also known as Barnaby Jazz’s favorite city in the world.
That’s… only true if there are hot muscular male sharks there.
C: Should I know who that is?
AAM: Barnaby Jazz is a gay shark. He’s rather… infamous for that.
SB: Least he got time off of being gay and actually play! He gonna be a challenge if he keeps up like this, playing with the head and not with the… head… That’s how you get good.
Believe me, I can get into that all day, but let’s not.
Anyway, we get a line-break, and then we cut back to the real world, where it’s revealed…
The battle of the monastery was not going well for either the Plegians or the defenders. After their initial shock at how Kale had acted, the monks that had taken up arms to defend their home had charged, only to find out that the young man saw everyone as an enemy. His blade soared through the air, shedding the blood of anyone that he came close to, though now he was seemingly in a deadlock as both Albert and Daven fought him, Albert having sent Ally away after nearly losing her to one of the weapon’s attacks.
So basically, Albert summoned his horse, only to abandon her after she gets cut one time. I know horses can kill their riders if they’re killed in battle, but still!
C: Also, surprise surprise, it seems our precious little Stu has lost his mind and is attacking everyone. This is why you do not make deals with the devil.
AAM: God help his soul.
C: What are you blathering about? It is far less satisfying when your opponent thinks everyone is a target!
SB: I swear, with the handbag…
“Kale, what are you doing?!” Daven screamed as he locked blades with him, his face inches from Kale’s. “This isn’t you, I know it isn’t! This sword, it’s changed you somehow!”
“You’re right, it has!” Kale laughed emotionlessly. “It’s made more powerful! It’s given me the power to ensure my life! I won’t die by anyone’s hands!”
C: That is… rather on the nose.
Anyway, Albert blocks his next attempt at a blow, and then Kale says:
“Why did you not try to kill me?” he asked. “Don’t you hate me for what I did? For causing the death of your mentor?”
“I… I…” Albert faltered for a moment, his gaze lowering. With a growl, he looked back up, locking his eyes with Kale’s.
What he should say: “Because the plot demands it.”
What he actually says:
“Shut up, just shut up! That’s not what this is about, damn it! I’m here to try and get that damned sword out of your hands!”
Which works just about as well.
So we get a bit more action scene, and Daven and Albert look at each other all “how do we stop this crazy motherfucker?”
We then cut to Lackey McEvil as he surveys what’s going on. He’s then all “okay, stop attacking Kale, focus on the monks”, before saying to signal the reinforcements.
C: Wait, reinforcements? What need would there have been for reinforcements? He stated that he vastly outnumbered everyone in the monastery easily! What is stopping him from simply marching in with his full force?
I… Um… Actually, that’s a good point. What did stop him from doing that?
Garrett watched as a small plume of smoke rose up over the horizon, his face indifferent as he ran a stone over the blade of his axe. So, the boss-man’s giving the attack order, eh? Well, time to get moving.
Oh, right. The plot.
AAM: Ah, we’re back with the traitor.
SB: Fuck me, here we go.
So Garrett gets all the men together, and he mentions he thinks Randell may be having a hard time. So he stirs up the troops, and—
A smirk came over his face as all of his men did just that
C: Do not worry: I stocked the ninjas up with duct tape. They are well prepared for—
*a gong sails right above Agundio’s head*
AAM: *ducks* Goodness, what was that?
… A gong. Fired by Taco. Because apparently, he doesn’t know you don’t like to smirk. At all.
, though it quickly changed into a frown. “Although, it’s just occurred to me that we can’t just leave the prisoners behind…
So leave a guard detail with them? Honestly, I’m not so sure that’s all that hard.
Now that I think about it, when I was with these idiots, we sent two of our own ahead because one of them was sick. Now, how many of you would rather deal with one weak, feeble girl who probably can’t even leave her bed right now instead of three capable fighters?”
AAM: I have a rather terrible feeling about this…
A general muttering of agreement reached his ears, making him smile widely. “Well, then it sounds like we don’t have much of a use for those three, now do we?” He snapped his fingers and pointed in the direction of where Marco, Myra, and Genevieve were all being kept. “Grab them and bring them here! Men, time to show you all just how savage I can be!”
Oh for fuck’s sake…
Another cry tore through the air as a group of his men ran to fetch the prisoners. Within moments, they were all brought before him, Genevieve and Myra struggling against there bonds while Marco simply stared daggers at the man he’d once called friend. “Garrett, you bastard… What the hell do you think you’re doing?” Myra screamed.
Garrett rolled his neck, popping a few bones. “Oh, nothing much… Just going to get the men’s blood pumping before the attack. Tell me, have you ever witnessed an execution before?” As Myra’s face began to pale, he let out a laugh. “Guess this one hasn’t! Well, then we’ll make sure she knows what one’s like before it comes time for hers.”
C: Really, now, an execution at this hour? Useless. Utterly, utterly useless. There is room for grandstanding, but this is not grandstanding. This is just a futile waste of time! There is time to execute them later!
And really? You’re getting their blood pumping? I’m pretty sure that’s what a motivational speech is for, dumbass!
SB: This doesn’t even make sense if you’re trying to betray his ass! I mean, if this is his way to free the prisoners, then the time is somewhat screwy, no?
Yeah. It’s like, isn’t your superior supposed to be running a battle that you’re being called to? Hell, you even admitted up front that you think his army is in danger! Given all that, I’m pretty shocked that nobody is pointing out how weird it is that you’re wasting time with this execution!
SB: It’s like basketball. Every second on the court counts. If you gonna fuck around and be snazzy or focus on ‘ideal’ behavior or how this bitch is doin’, you’re losin’ valuable fucking time!
Exactly! How has nobody pointed this out to Garrett?
He gestured at two of his men with his hand. “Take those two bitches over there.” he ordered, thumbing at a small area behind him. While they did that, he pointed at another man. “You’re going to be the one that holds them down while I make the cut, got it? I don’t want anything to go wrong with this.” The man nodded and pressed his boot against Marco’s back, who growled as his head was slowly forced towards the ground.
Oh, come on, really? They’re even taking part in this execution.
AAM: That is rather… dumb, I’ll admit.
SB: That’s putting it lightly. The fuck taught them about life, Marcus Knight?
“Why are you doing this?” he demanded. “Garrett, why can’t you understand why I lied? If I had told you that both my sister and I were from Plegia, you would have-“
Wait, so the big secret that caused Garrett to turn was that Marco and Myra were from Plegia? You know, the one we already knew?
C: What reason would he have to betray them for that secret? Lest you forget, they were clearly running away.
SB: And what the fuck would convince that “Lackey McEvil” dude that he’s wrong?
AAM: They clearly aren’t double-agents, this Randell’s capture of that confirms that. Further, from what Sterling said, they were instrumental in helping Garrett escape a life of sin, something that he was grateful to Kale for. So what reason would anyone have to believe him?
I mean, you could argue that Randell doesn’t know Garret’s history with Myra and Marco, but I can’t be the only one who thinks that even to someone who doesn’t know that, this comes right the fuck out of nowhere.
“Oh, shut up!” Garrett said, rolling his eyes. “You don’t know shit about how I would’ve reacted.
SB: I don’t think anyone would’ve expected it to turn you into a basic. Holy shit, this dipshit needs to be punched in the face…
So then Garrett speechifies some more, Genevieve pleads him to stop, Myra’s all “not Marco”, and Garrett is all “denied”.
She heard the sound of a blade tearing through flesh, followed by something hitting the ground and the screams of the men around her.
And that ends that scene. Good gravy, what the fuck was that?
AAM: I concur. I think I’m getting a headache from this scene.
C: Prepare yourselves, I have the feeling the stupidity has only just begun.
We then have a line break, and we cut to…
“I must have died back on that battlefield, because I’m pretty sure this counts as Hell!” I shout, my voice taken from me by the winds of the storm.
AAM: No… I believe it would only be hell if the punishment was more direct than forcing you to wander a wasteland with no clue what is happening.
C: That rather surprises me that you are making such an observation, songbird.
AAM: My major was in Theology, of course I would keep such topics in mind.
Freezing cold rain keeps striking me, making me even more tired as the cold and struggle of climbing the mountain take their combined toll on my stamina.One does not simply climb a stormy mountain… Hey, it actually kinda worked that time!
Then why don’t I find it funny?
SB: Because it ain’t?
… Yeah, let’s go with that.
So then Kale finally gets to the top of the mountain, and upon getting there he sees…
It’s me. Or, it’s a copy of me, done in complete grayscale. His skin’s the color of chalk and his hair is pitch black. His eyes are pure white with black irises filled with, if I had to guess, pure hate. I think what surprises me the most, oddly enough, is the fact that he’s wielding what looks like a smaller version of Pyramid Head’s Great Knife with bandages wrapped around the hilt and his right arm, the longer ones trailing along the ground. I’ve got no idea where that came from. Then again, I always did like Pyramid Head as a monster… wouldn’t have objected to getting to swing around his Great Knife either.
… So he’s facing down the manifestation of his desire to be punished for some horrible sin he committed in the past?
C: I doubt it is that. He did say it was a “smaller” version, did he not?
“Ah, took you long enough to make it here. Didn’t think you’d actually have the guts to face me.” he says, his voice exactly like mine.
SB: Damn, even his own mind thinks he’s a fruitcake. I don’t know if that’s sad or hilarious.
Perhaps sadly hilarious?
C: Or would he prefer “hilariously sad”?
“Tell me who you are!” I demand, though I instantly regret it. This type of scenario instantly becomes familiar to me. I swear, if he starts going on about he’s ‘my Shadow’ and ‘my true self,’ I’m throwing myself off of the mountain. I’m already dealing with Fire Emblem; I could really do without Persona right now!
And wow, even the fic seems to recognize how little it actually has to do with Fire Emblem! More toppings to add to the sandwich of fail, folks!
He laughs and throws his arms out to his sides. “What, not obvious enough for you? I think it’s pretty damn clear that I’m you… for the most part.” He plants his sword into the ground and leans against the pommel. “You see, I’m both you and I’m not you. Consider me… what you could be: powerful, unstoppable, a true force to be reckoned with.”
AAM: And rather evil. I think this means that yes, this is secretly a test of character.
As I said, I hate being genre savvy sometimes.
So Kale asks why he’d want to be like the Shadow version of him. He cracks a joke, but then shadow man responds by being all “I have power”, and “you won’t have to fear anything.”
C: In other words, typical things a demonic manifestation might tell you if he wanted to use you.
Pretty much. Kale asks for clarification, and of course…
Sighing, he snaps his fingers and a small rectangle of air shimmers, changing shape and colors until- is that Daven and Albert?! “What the- Who are they fighting and what’s with all the other people around them!?” His response is to just point at himself and then to me. I gulp as cold realization hits me. “They’re fighting… me?” He nods. “Why?” I ask.
Well… it could be you went full psychopath on the—
He shrugs. “Oh, I don’t know. It could be that you went psychopath on the Plegian army and the monks and now they’re being forced to fight you before you slaughter all of them.” He throws his hands up into the air as if at a loss. “But hey, that’s just my opinion. Even if it is true.”
AAM: Well… it did say what you were about to.
What he says makes no sense: why would I go crazy and start attacking everyone? …That fucking bastard of a sword! If I manage to figure out some way of getting out of here, I’m melting it down into a bedpan! Then, I’m finding the nearest wyvern and having it-
SB: Hey, you’re the one who took it and shit. It’s not the sword’s fault you let it have its way with you, the mindfucking was consensual!
“Oh, stop blaming mystical, magical swords for getting you into this mess.”
Mystical, magical swords? One after the other? Isn’t that a touch—
Fuck! Agundio, get d-
SB: *shuts Herr’s mouth with his paw*
AAM: What is that?
SB: Just duck if you want to keep your head on your shoulders.
[Scene Redacted for Extreme Violence]
AAM: I’m… not sure I ever wished to know a basketball could do that.
SB: Only in nerdatopia.
I’m shaken out of my thoughts by what he says. “You have no one else but yourself to blame for what’s happening. You chose to take the easiest way out instead of facing your problems. You took that sword of your own free will; the only thing it’s guilty of is giving you the option.” He picks up his sword from the ground, the earth falling from its blade, and points the tip at me. “You were too much of a coward to actually fight. You ran from danger instead of facing it head on, like a man, like a warrior, would. The moment you drew that sword, I was given control, albeit limited, to fulfill your greatest wish: to live without fear. It’s just your fault that you weren’t very specific about that wish and now, your friends are going to pay the price.”
AAM: Well, this confirms it: this sword is a manifestation of Satan. From the way the sword talked to him, it essentially goaded him on into grabbing the blade and doing what he needed to defend himself. It’s a rather classic depiction of the devil, particularly if you consider the same approach was given to Jesus himself. And now it’s throwing it back in his face.
Yeah, but I guess that shows that he wouldn’t have done it if he didn’t have the sword’s assurance he could do anything with it…
AAM: True, that is also a rather classic part of devil symbolism.
SB: So fucker here’s literally contracted with the devil. Great. And watch, he’s going to pussyfoot aroud the damn fact.
“Over my dead body!” I scream, gripping the hilt of the sword that I’ve been carrying this entire time and tugging on it- which soon becomes futile as the damn thing won’t come out of its sheath! Well, if there’s a lesson to be learned, it’s to never trust talking inanimate objects. …Actually, that’s a lesson I should’ve probably known beforehand.
C: You are only just discovering this? It is a wonder Lackey McEvil thought you were worthy enough to exact vengeance upon.
I thought you didn’t like him.
C: It just goes to show Lackey McEvil has no standards. Which is even more reason why he should not be taken seriously as a villain!
“Give me back my body and leave them alone!” I cry as a flash of lightning blinds me.
Oh hey, look at this. I just hope this doesn’t mean…
It’s only for a moment, but as soon as my eyes are able to see again, I’m put on the ground. Looking up, I see my doppelgänger standing over me, his sword pointing at my heart. I start to breathe heavily as I realize that, well, I’m probably about to die. His eyes seem to shine for a moment, like he realizes what I know is about to happen.
“Ah, so you get it.” he states, a smirk on his face. “If I were to kill you right now, I’d take full control of your body. I’d be allowed to do whatever I chose to with no real consequences… at least none that I’d suffer. Your friends… now, they’d suffer quite a bit. But, there is another option.” His smirk fades from his face as he brings his sword to his side.
Wait, he was smirking?
AAM: Um… Why isn’t there a gong flying at us?
C: Because it is a properly-used smirk, for once. Such a rare thing, really.
SB: Oh. Well, good. I think?
Not as good as the fact we’re being forced to sit through this incredibly clichéd bullshit…
“Accept the fact that this is your fate, that I am the power that you so desire, and I will spare you. Of course, you’ll be forced to do as I command for the rest of eternity, but that’s a small price to pay to avoid death, isn’t it?”
As a creature that’s barely in control of your own faculties?
AAM: I don’t know if I can think of a worse fate…
SB: Yeah, no. I’d rather die than be someone’s bitch. And watch him choose the bitch option, I bet he’s used to that.
I have to admit, neither option is very pleasing. If I die, he gets full control over my body. If I live, I’m his slave for an eternity. Either way, I’m likely going to be forced to kill if what’s happening with my friends is any indication. The only real question I have to ask myself is this: do I live for an eternity with the guilt of killing innocent people hanging over my head or do I choose to take the easy way out and die, allowing this thing to go crazy?
The best choice doesn’t take even a minute to form in my mind.
“My choice… is neither!” I scream, lunging up at my clone.
I take him by surprise, knocking him to the ground and as I fall on top of him, I start raining down blow after blow with my fists. “This. Is. MY. BODY!” I scream as I bring both hands together and bring them down onto his face. There’s a satisfying crack, though he quickly throws me off. Rolling to my feet, I feel a smirk of my own as I see a trickle of blood running from his nose. Damn, what is with me and breaking people’s noses? First Randell and now this guy… “You want me to choose? I choose option three, also known as option ‘Go fuck yourself!'” I undo the sword from my belt and hold it in front of me. Even if it’s still sheathed, I can fight with it.
SB: Whoah, this is what it’s taking him to finally get some balls around here?
Yeah. Never mind all the constant danger stuff, apparently the second someone tries to take control of his body, it’s all “whoop, gotta be brave now”.
AAM: If nothing else, he at least finally has the courage to face his demons.
Yeah, but on the flip side he’s now likely going to gain access to broken-ass swordsmanship abilities. Otherwise known as, you know, being a total Gary Stu. Not to mention that whole thing where this doesn’t have a damn thing to do with Fire Emblem.
My opponent stares me down before laughing. Then, with sudden speed that I forgot he had, he has me by the throat, his knock-off Great Knife pointed at my throat. “So, you think you can fight against me? You think you can defeat the very thing that gives you power? I AM MORE THAN YOU WILL EVER BE AND YOU WOULD FIGHT ME!?”
Well, this is it: game over. Guess I shouldn’t be too surprised. Death comes for everyone in some way, shape, or form. I just didn’t quite expect my death to come in my own shape. I smile as our eyes lock and I say the last sentence I’m sure will ever leave my mouth.
“Like I said, option ‘Go fuck yourself.'”
He lets out a growl and brings back the blade, ready to end me.
I just close my eyes and let it come.
And that’s where the line break is.
SB: Come on, kill him already! If you’re going to kill him, do it quick!
C: I believe, polecat, there may be more that is not being addressed.
Dear God, I hope there isn’t.
We then get a line break, and we cut to Daven and Albert being all “how is he not exhausted”. They banter a bit, and then…
Seeing how tired they were, Kale let out another cold laugh. “Like I thought, I no longer have anything to fear. The two of you, along with anyone who would harm me, will die- AGH!” He suddenly screamed, grasping at his chest with his left hand as he plunged the blade in his right deeply into the ground. The bandages attaching the sword to his arm seemed to lengthen and tighten around his arm as he screamed in agony, his face slowly turning pale. “How-how can this be?!”
His two opponents shared a glance as another thought ran through their minds simultaneously:
Oh for fuck’s sake, Crunchy.
C: You forget that I have been in this place for a fairly long time myself, parrot. I am no stranger to the nuances of a bad fanfiction.
AAM: You mean this blade isn’t an analogue to Satan?
I… don’t believe it is. Nope, if I know my bad fanfiction, it’s much dumber than that.
We then cut to Randell for a paragraph as he takes delight in Kale. However, he also then ponders “wait, where the fuck are my reinforcements”. And that’s when we cut to…
15 minutes earlier
…the time warp, apparently. Which is just a jump to the left.
C: And a step to the right?
Yes. Then it’s a step to the right.
All the men howled as Garrett brought the axe down, ready to take off Marco’s head, their blood pumping as they prepared to see the man’s head rolling at their feet. The screams from the man’s younger sister were drowned out by their cries of bloodlust. With a sickeningly wet noise, Garrett’s axe passed clean through the meat of the neck and a head fell to the ground.
And that cements Garrett as an—
Only, it was the wrong head.
C: Oh, for heaven’s sake…
The men all screamed in anger as their ally’s head stared up at them with cold eyes, his mouth still wide from a cry of surprise. Looking up at Garrett, they all saw his frame shaking as a laugh erupted from his mouth. “Ya know, I didn’t actually think this would work out so well. It’s hard to pull of a successful triple-cross nowadays.”
SB: That’s the successful triple-cross bullshit?
Yeah, I’m not buying it, but… Let’s just see what happens, yeah?
Anyway, he then frees Genevieve and Myra, being all “I’ll explain later, just get moving” before gloating to the soldiers.
One of the men charge forwards, his spear lowered to skewer Garrett, when the head of it suddenly fell off, leaving him clutching a useless stick that he looked at in surprise. “What the- How’d this happen?”
“Oh yeah, I may have taken the liberty of fixing up everyone’s weapons while Randy was gone. You’re welcome.” Garrett smiled as he watched all fifty of the men look at their weapons, finding parts of them broken or their blades dulled.
C: And your idea of making sure this plan would succeed was to tamper with their weapons in such a way that they would fall apart in use or be blunted so they cannot cut.
I don’t think you know how weapons work.
“So, Genny, you want the right half or the left half?” he asked the thief over his shoulder.
“I’ll take… right. And stop calling me Genny!”
“Yeah, yeah, whatever.” Still smiling, he let out a cry as he and the lady thief charged their enemies. The battle, if it could even be called that, was sort and bloody, especially after Myra managed to untie Marco and the large man had managed to get his hands on a sword that wasn’t in terrible condition.
And of course they own all the mooks. Because why not?
When the last man let out his death cry, Garrett was covered from head-to-toe in blood, mostly the Plegians. “Now that… is what I call savagery. Wouldn’t you agree, guy- OH GODS!” He fell to the ground as Myra suddenly ran up to him and delivered a swift kick to… his Sacred Stones.
*throws tomatoes at fic*
That pun was terrible, and you should feel bad for having made it!
AAM: That was a pun?
Sacred Stones is the only Magvel-verse game in the series.
“You rotten bastard!” she swore, looking down on him as he clutched at the area in agony. “If you were going to try something like that, the least that you could have done is told us! What, did you not trust Marco and I just because we’re Plegians?”
SB: And now this crazy bitch is extending her punishment to this guy?
Well, you can’t deny he deserves it.
SB: Hey, I didn’t say he didn’t!
So of course, Genevieve adds in her own abuse, and then…
She sniffled slightly. “Though, I am thankful that you decided not to carry out your dreadful intentions regarding Marco and the rest of us.”
Not even bothering to rise to his feet, Garrett let out a sigh. “They never were my intentions. I said and did all of those things to play the idiot and his men. I needed you all to be as believing as possible, so I decided not to clue you in. I knew that we wouldn’t be getting out of here easily, so I figured, ‘Hey, why not try and join them? Win their trust and then get all of us out of here, now there’s a plan!’ I just wished I’d known it would’ve cost me any chance of ever having a kid…”
SB: Oh believe me, you sabotaged that shit even without getting kicked in the balls by the crazy bitch.
No kidding. If that didn’t do it, the blithering idiocy that you just displayed would have done it, because nobody would want to rear a child with your stupid ass. Seriously, how do I even begin talking about how stupid this plan of yours was?
I mean, you thought “join them and you can help your friends get out”. Okay, I’m with your logic so far. And to get his trust, you had to play to what he thinks you are. So I’ll buy that.
C: I do not. Essentially, his sole reason for betrayal was an intentional catastrophization of an issue that makes very little sense. The only reason I suspect Lackey McEvil bought it was because he does not know the extent of their relationship!
Well, whatever, you can’t say that part didn’t go wrong, ‘cause you could kind of buy it. But Garrett, all that is useless without one thing: a good exit strategy. ‘Cause hey, you need to plan the escape somehow, right? And that plan you ultimately came up with? Fucking atrocious! I mean… fuck it, I’m pulling out the numbered list to explain why this plan should have fallen apart immediately!
- You didn’t actually do anything to arm your friends!
- Sure, keeping them out of the loop was needed to help the enemy buy your turncoatness, but you didn’t think to, I don’t know, hint at it or something? Or otherwise bring them in on your plan, so that they can play along?
- You were outnumbered at a ratio of 2:25!
- You tampered with the enemy’s weapons to make them unusable… despite the fact that you logically shouldn’t have had any time to do that between all the shit you were doing to get your superior’s trust.
- That part shouldn’t have succeeded anyway, because don’t armies have people that maintain the weapons who would’ve noticed shit like that?
- Blunted swords can still be used as a weapon, if you grab the blade and use the hilt as a club!
- You thought to distract these soldiers by grandstanding about executing these guys in front of them while your direct superior is waiting for you to bring the reinforcements in!
- Where the hell were you planning on going after ditching this gaggle of reinforcements, anyway? As soon as you don’t show up, he’s going to get suspicious, and once he finds out the truth? Say goodbye to your freedom! And that’s if you somehow manage to outrun his army, too!
AAM: I don’t think you should forget his superior’s role in all this, either. What’s the point of leaving fifty soldiers behind as reinforcements when your main force is 900 men?
C: The songbird brings up a valid concern. What form of reinforcements are these, that they are so small?
I don’t know, I guess it was an order sent from the PCC or some shit like that. Either way, that’s a suspiciously small reinforcements. It’s almost like the author knew Garrett would fall flat on his face against a larger force!
SB: So everyone in this story is a basic now. Called it.
Yep. And then he pats himself on the back by saying:
It’s hard to pull of a successful triple-cross nowadays.
Really? Really? If you thought this was a successful plan, you’re either stupid or delusional.
SB: Even Lance Freewell is a better traitor than you.
AAM: And I should remind you that Freewell was traded to the Keystones against his will.
Good Lord, Garrett!
C: On the plus side, I believe we have finally seen someone worse at coming up with viable plans than Kale!Stu.
Garrett then says “I don’t care where you’re from”, and then Marko is all “I’m sorry for not telling you my secret”. He then helps Garrett up being all “Kale needs our help”, before punching Garrett in the stomach as his form of payback. Which Garrett accepts.
And then we cut to…
…Why does death feel like normal? I mean, I would expect a bit of pain or something. I just got stabbed by a sword, so I should at least feel a small portion of agony. Unless… Am I alive?! Cracking open one of my eyes, I see that the doppelgänger’s sword has stopped only inches from my heart. Looking at his face, he’s wearing a satisfied smirk. “Um… what?” is all I can manage to ask.
SB: Oh, for fuck’s-
He laughs and lets me go, gently dropping me onto my feet. “Man, never thought you’d actually try and fight against me! Ah, that was absolutely amazing! Look at you, you’ve finally grown a pair!” He clasps my shoulder and smiles. “Congratulations, Kale, because you’ve passed the test.”
AAM: Um… yes. What Kale said.
“Wha-what test!? You just tried to kill me!” I scream. “What kind of sick, psychotic, Jigsaw-type test is that!?”
AAM: Hold, so it’s not a deal with the Devil, but rather a test of character.
*facepalm* Oh my God, really? I have to talk about two separate instances of idiocy from non-Kale characters this time around? Fuck off.
C: I believe that is the polecat’s line.
SB: He can have it, he’s usin’ it right.
So then the thing turns to some stairs, and then Kale follows him. When they get to the summit…
“Okay, I want some answers. What kind of test was that and why were you testing me in the first place?”
He shrugs. “Well, to be fair, I wasn’t.”
“I was.” The entire mountain shakes as lightning flashes all around me. My double slowly fades away into mist, leaving his sword behind, as two… really big… scary looking… glowing red eyes appear out of the storm clouds, looking straight at me.
Oh dear Christ, I think it’s Crota’s long-lost brother, folks!
… Uh… Shit, that’s right, you guys don’t know I’ve been playing lots of Destiny lately.
…help me… “I wished to test your courage and your determination to see if you truly were worthy of my blade.” the massive figure booms. “And I am pleased to acknowledge that you have, without a doubt, passed. I deem you worthy of my blade, Harbinger.”
Some test you’ve concocted there, honey. I mean… wow. Where the fuck do I even begin talking about how incredibly stupid this whole test of character you’ve set up here is?
AAM: I would start with how it bait-and-switched a deal with the devil.
Yeah, what was up with that? I get you’d want the wielder to understand the responsibility involved with having such power, but I’m pretty sure there are ways you can test that that don’t involve goading him into taking the weapon and then just thrusting this on him!
And besides, he’s the only one you’ve seen who can talk to you. I get Kale is a coward, but shouldn’t you have been able to do the test of character at any point before now? Like, say, when he first grabbed the sword?
SB: But that’d mean we wouldn’t get any dramatic bullshit. So of course, he’s gotta deal with it in a battle. You know…where all the dramatic shit can happen at once!
C: Careful, polecat, your genre savvy is developing.
And by the way, it’s also well and good if it takes place instantaneously… except, you know, for the small fact where you possessed Kale’s body throughout the entirety of his test! And that wouldn’t have been so bad, if you hadn’t killed several hundred people by then while grandly speechifying, and even going so far as to show that to Kale! Which, again, wouldn’t have been so bad, if it weren’t being explicitly shown in the narration that it’s actually fucking happening, and it’s not just some vision he’s having!
AAM: So he quite literally sacrificed hundreds of lives meaninglessly to make a point. Am I the only one who thinks that’s rather… excessive?
Not to mention it kind of defeats the purpose of making Kale learn to be responsible with his newfound Stu powers if you immediately force him to do irresponsible shit just to make a point!
C: Kale!Stu’s comparison to Jigsaw is rather apt here. Excessive violence, lack of regard for human life, convoluted reasoning behind their methods…
All that for a fucking test of character. If this is a test of character, then the first seven chapters of Until Dawn are a totally safe prank that isn’t mean-spirited in any way at all and totally isn’t going to be horribly traumatizing for two of the characters. Oh, wait.
SB: That does it. Fruitcake: The story. How the fuck, even?
AAM: Honestly, Sterling, do you want to know?
SB: It’s morbid curiosity at this point more than anything else.
Well, Sterling, we’re all a little loco en la cabeza here, so… yeah.
C: What I am wondering about is what this “Arashi” is supposed to be. Does this fic hope to explain that some time soon?
“His blade? Then that must mean- “You’re Arashi?” I ask, trying to keep from fainting in terror. Seriously, I dare anyone to try and stand on a mountain that’s covered in storm clouds while some giant… thing with glowing red eyes looks down on them and see how long they last. I’m actually impressed with myself. Under normal circumstances, I would’ve been fleeing in terror.
The eyes, or the creature that they belong to, laugh. “Yes, young warrior, I am Arashi, the Beast of the Heavens. It is a pleasure to finally be able to meet you, though my fang proved a fair enough medium for me to guide you.”
Beast of the Heavens, huh? Which, of course, is why nobody ever references you in the game. Because that makes sense.
Anyway, Kale is like “wait, the sword is your fang”, to which Arashi says yes before asking Kale why he think he’d test the Harbingers. Kale then says “weed out the ones who might use it for evil?
“Yes, there is that, but there is more to it than what meets the eyes. The avatar that I created to contact you on this plane was a manifestation of your fears and desires. It’s job was to test and see if you would falter in the face of death and if you would give in to your terror and accept a horrible fate. If you had chosen to live under its possession, I would have destroyed you on the spot.” I hear a rumbling, though its not thunder: it’s laughter. “Though, I never would have expected you to act so defiantly. No, that was truly a surprise.”
Believe me, it’s as surprising to you as it is to the rest of us. Seriously, the guy who left his friends to die because he was scared of dying suddenly did a complete 180 to do this?
C: Forgive me if I stare in disbelief.
So then Kale is like “so you did all that to make sure I wouldn’t chicken out”, we then get some more speechifying about fear and faults and the fact that Kale left his friends to die, and blah blah blah, Kale gets some balls, blah.
SB: Sounding half-assed there.
Honestly, I’m so over this whole Harbinger of Arashi business it’s not even funny. Kale started off as being half-decently written, but now? Yeah, he’s just fallen into the classic self-insert trap with such force that I’ll be surprised if Barnaby doesn’t work this into his next dunk.
AAM: At least it was done in service to a character arc.
That… honestly doesn’t make it better in any way. Especially not since this fic has jumped the shark.
C: And in the first major story arc. Well…
Anyway, after that, we then cut back to Albert and Daven, who have turned their attention to the Plegians. Albert notices someone running off to attack Kale, and Daven runs over to intercept him. Of course…
Cutting down the fighter he’d been struggling with, Daven immediately whirled around and charged the man who was stalking towards his friend. “Get away from him!” he yelled, bringing his sword down. The man spun around and he let out a sudden cry of surprise as a sharp pain pierced his side. Looking down, he saw the blade of the man sticking into his right hip. He fell backwards as the man slid out the weapon. “N-no… this can’t… I still have to find him…” he whispered as his blood slowly flowed from his body.
Slowly? Man, have you ever actually seen a gaping wound before? They don’t tend to bleed slowly, you know!
AAM: I… still feel a little sick watching that old Thrust game. I never thought you could survive that much bleeding…
C: Old Thrust game?
Long story. Essentially, someone got clawed on the court at one particularly infamous FBA game.
C: Well… That is…
SB: Yeah. As much as everyone likes to talk about how great it is, some really freaky shit has gone down the past few years enough for all the fuckers to shut up about that little indicent.
The man let out a laugh. “You’re out of your league, boy. You would have done better than to mess with me.” He turned towards Kale, a smile on his face. “And now, this bastard will learn the same thing.” He raised his blade in the air, ready to bring it down, when a piercing golden light began to shine from Kale’s blade. He was forced to shut his eyes as it began to glow brighter than the sun. “What the hell is this?”
This, is the ultimate confirmation you need that you’re in a fic that’s about to jump the shark.
That’s when we cut back to Kale’s POV as he describes what it’s like to come back to his own body. Of course…
I look down and my eyes widen in surprise at my new wardrobe. I have on an emerald green tunic under a golden coat that hangs down to my ankles. A large red sash with gold designs is tied around my waist, over the coat. Loose black pants and brown and black boots finish off my clothing. Raising my hands in front of me, I see that they’ve been covered in a silver and gold type of armored glove that exposes my fingers.
And apparently, the costuming department of The Wiz: Live took over when we weren’t looking. There better not be a musical number in our future, because if that turns out to be the case I’m just bailing on this whole thing entirely.
“This,” I start, looking up and locking eyes with Randell, “is who I am.”
C: “A rather overblown Gary Stu. You killed my father, prepare to die.”
My hand flies to my side and wraps around the hilt of the Blade of Arashi. “And I am the one who is ending this!” I draw the sword, which glows brightly for a moment before dimming down.
The sword is nothing like it was. Before, it looked like a normal short sword in its sheathe, but now, it’s in a category all of its own. The blade is a bluish silver that extends from the mouth of a golden dragon with red eyes. The dragon itself is curled around the actual hilt of the blade, with the tail forming the pommel with a large green gem on the end. Even though the dragon’s body forms a complete circle around where I hold the weapon, it doesn’t interfere with how I hold it.
“So, this is the form my fang has taken while in your grasp. Quite interesting.”
And now, I think it bears asking again: what the fuck does any of this have to do with Fire Emblem?
SB: *shrug* Is all nerd-talk to me.
“Arashi? So, I guess you’re part of this whole new ensemble, huh?”
“Consider me a guide, if you will. You do not yet know how to control your new powers as my Harbinger, and thus, will need my guidance.
Oh, don’t be so stringent. Knowing how shit has happened so far, I’m pretty sure Kale will pick this shit up with no problems.
I might suggest that you help your friend before you engage your foe; it appears he is gravely wounded.” I look down to see Daven staring up at me, his eyes wide and his face pale. There’s a large gash in his side, courtesy of Randell if I had to guess.
AAM: And now it seems he’s rather bad at diagnosing a wound. Wasn’t Daven’s injury described more as a stab than a slash?
It was, wasn’t it?
SB: Well, it’s not like it’ll change anything. Poor fucker’s still gonna die, and there’s nothing he can—
“Flip around your weapon and hold the gem aloft.” Nodding, I do just that, turning over the sword so that I’m holding it in an underhanded fashion. Raising it into the air, the jewel begins to glow as a green and gold aura washes over Daven. He grits his teeth in pain but the wound quickly closes and soon, it’s gone completely. “Healing, one of the many interesting abilities this blade seems to possess.
SB: How convenient…
This guy has more broken powers now?! One more, and I might just start a counter.
AAM: You track such things with counters?
Of course! Why wouldn’t you?
So then after this, Arashi is all “oh, by the way, there’s someone to fight you”. Kale then turns to Lackey McEvil, who of course…
He laughs bitterly. “Boy, I don’t know what you’re on about. But yeah, that’s my plan: to wipe Ylisse off of the maps. You want to know why? Vengeance!” he screams, clenching his fist. “The Ylisseans tore across Plegia, burning homes and killing innocent men and women. My own mother… I lost her at the same time that Gilroy lost both of his parents. On that day, we swore a blood-oath, an oath to destroy Ylisse, no matter what it may cost us.”
C: Oh, no! You do not get to have a tragic backstory! The fact that you have expended so much time and energy to get back at one worthless Gary Stu renders that an impossibility, as does your proclivities towards conquering Ylisse by yourself! And do tell me, how were you planning to do that anyway? Point is, you do not earn the ‘tragic backstory’ card, lackey!
SB: Dude, shut up, he’s probably going to die soon.
C: I would much rather have had him live than to see him get taken down by such a Gary Stu.
He looks at me, his eyes boring into me. “We were more than ready to die for this cause, but for him to die to you, a mere child who got a lucky shot? I willnever allow that to go unpunished.” He lifts his blade and settles into a fighting stance. “Now, prepare for your demise!”
And of course this leads into…
I flip around the Blade of Arashi and settle into my own stance. The fighting around us seemingly stops as both sides realize that the enemy commanders are preparing to fight each other. He makes the first move, cutting overhead. I block and duck under his arm, spinning as I do so in order to position myself for an attack. Just as my blade is about to meet his exposed back, he spins around to block it, though just barely. I push forward, knocking him off balance, before spinning around and swinging my sword at his neck.
Is this a sword fight, or is it that dance from Swan Lake with the thirty-two fouettés? Make up your mind, and once you do, stop fucking spinning!
He manages to guard, though the blow knocks away his guard. He realizes this as his eyes widen. I take a step backwards before dashing forwards, going past his broken guard and cutting across his exposed midsection. “That’s the end of your story!” I shout, a small smile playing on my face as I realize that I just hit my first critical.
And there go the game mechanics once again! Seriously, isn’t it odd to be thinking of that at a time like this?
Odd to be thinking of that at a time like this, but okay.
C: I would argue it is odd to think about it in those terms anyhow.
“D-damn you…” I hear him mutter. Turning around, I see him kneeling down, clutching his wound. “I-I suppose that it may not have been such a lucky strike after all… F-forgive me, my brother…” he mutters, falling backwards. I slide to catch him. “W-what are you doi-”
“Did you believe in your cause? Did you believe in why you chose to fight?” I ask. He nods weakly. “Would you change any of the things that you’ve done if it meant never reaching this point?” He shakes his head slowly. I offer a kind smile. “Then rest well. You’ve got nothing to ask forgiveness for. You fought for your reason and you fought well, as I’m sure your brother would have wished.”
He chuckles weakly and tries to smile. “I-I was w-wrong about you… Y-you’re n-not a b-boy… You’ve got t-the makings of a tr-true warrior…” He shudders once and then, he’s still.
SB: Was that supposed to make us feel sorry for the guy who died? Because all I’m asking is ‘why should I give a damn’.
C: Well, at least Lackey McEvil is dead. I would have rather he was not the victim of an overblown Gary Stu, but there it is.
So then Kale and Arashi are like “let’s rationalize the kind words I gave him”, and then he realizes he’s still surrounded by the Plegian army.
AAM: Which gives him cause for concern, no?
SB: Sorry, but you can’t make him totally own an army and then make it look like he’s in trouble. Shit doesn’t work that way unless you’re a serious pussy.
Damn, Sterling, you learn quick.
SB: Well, if I’m going to do this now, might as well be the best at it, right?
Of course, before these guys can attack Kale…
“Cease your attack at once.” A dark pillar shoots up from the ground, and as it disappears, the grip on my blade tightens as I recognize the mage from the mansion.
C: Thank you, we will finally have some true villainy here!
AAM: Is this the mage who…?
AAM: *signs the cross* Oh dear…
“I have direct orders from King Gangrel himself, stating that in the event Randell should fall, I am to take direct command of this force and order it home. Will there be any arguments?” he asks. It’s still surprising to hear him speak, though its clear that he has the entire group’s attention. “Very good. Now, this will only hurt for a moment…” He holds up his hand and gathers black and purple energy into it before throwing the sphere that’s formed their to the ground. All of the remaining Plegian soldiers are immediately swallowed by darkness, leaving only the monk defenders, Albert, Daven, and myself with the mage. “Now that that’s been taken care of…” he says quietly, holding up his hand again.
SB: Now comes the part where the fruitcake gets to take your ass out?
Pfft, I wish. No, what actually happens…
“Wait!” Daven cries out, lunging at him. The mage snaps his fingers and disappears into a column of darkness, leaving Daven to grasp at the air. “Damn…” I hear him whisper.
C: Ah, of course. The mage decided to use teleportation magic. At least he remains true to rule sixty-two on the Evil Overlord list.
AAM: … There is a list of rules for that?
C: Naturally! We must hold ourselves to some standards, you know! And in this case, he is rather abiding to the rule that states you must retreat dramatically after a lackey has been defeated.
SB: At least he followed something, otherwise you would bitch about it endlessly.
Thank goodness for that.
So Daven walks off, but before Kale can do that Garrett and the others show up. And then, of course…
These are the people who I will protect. Them, and everyone else that I can.
And that, my friends, is the end of the chapter.
SB: Holy shit, this was a long one….
No kidding. And it was also the stupidest. What a chapter to jump the shark on, right?
Anyway, there is another author’s note, but honestly we’ve been at this for so long I’m content to just skip it today. I think he mentions something about denying that Kale has gone God-mode, but… well, hindsight’s fully kicked in for MaesterDimentio by now, so let’s not dwell on that.
C: He still is not as God-moded as Subject 23 was.
Oh dear God, that’s true! But then again, don’t forget that his powers were also supposed to have a drawback, so…
Anyway, I think that does it for this week. I think I need to take a break from this fic, because holy shit…
Ninja: Ah, there you are, Crunchy-san!
C: Oh, is there news?
N: The portal is ready!
AAM: Oh, good! We can return home!
SB: Finally! Jävla helvete, I can finally get back home!
AAM: What is this teleporter made o—
SB: *clamps hands over Aggie’s beak* It exists and that’s ALL it matters! *whispers to Aggie* Do not finish that question. We’ll be trapped here for another week if you do!
Yeah, Sterling made that mistake once already.
C: I must admit, I will miss seeing the polecat. It was fun to watch him get riled up.
SB: Yeah, put a sock in it, newt.
AAM: *Pushes Sterling off his beak* He will miss you too, I know it.
SB: YOU shut up!
Well, I guess this is it. I’ll see you all back in the FBA.
AAM: Fare thee well.
SB: See you, motherfuckers. Have fun with your nerd shit while I’m hittin’ it big getting that ring!
*Agundio and Sterling both leave*
Well, they’ll be fine, I hope. And with any luck, they’ll be back where they need to be.
Anyway, folks, I’m Herr Wozzeck, I’ve been joined by Sterling, Agundio, and Crunchy… and I need to get on a break from this fic.
C: Do you wish for some sangria?
Sure. Just don’t put ghost chili in there the way you did the last time.
C: As you command.