Note for Anime, China FGO, or NA FGO Server players: This work follows the JP original which is much further ahead, including terminology and servant names. You are warned ahead of time, but this contains countless spoilers for almost anything from the Fate Series.
Foreword for everyone: I completely ignore suggestions and requests for servants, scene ideas, and developments. Save yourself the time by not typing it.
There have always been countless ways to tell fantastical stories, both past and present. They might chronicle the lives and achievements of the make believe, those who existed and are elevated further from the truth, or the actual facts themselves. Depending on the source, they might be tales to lift the spirits in calamitous times, lay children to sleep with a rekindled imagination, or historical information that helped shape humanity's identity. Telling the difference was often as easy as recognizing broad subjects such as magecraft and scientific endeavor.
But sometimes, the line between fact and fiction disappeared entirely to those privy to the truth.
The story of a group of brave souls that were fighting a war across time to prevent humanity's extinction would seem like another fictional story. Yet, in the snowcapped mountain range, hidden far from the curious eye, that very unbelievable tale is being written. A lone structure of massive proportions jutted from a large mountain's side. It stood as the final vestige of humanity, and the lone beacon of civilization's long history of defying the odds.
Near the smoothed white walls of Chaldea, a lone cemetery stood as a silent reminder of what may still come to pass. Simple graves in countless rows lay blanketed in snow to serve as a memorial to the many who fell four months ago. Cremated and buried, their resting places lay close to one another, placed on a flattened mountain peak that overlooked the side of the facility. While not visible from its many windows, it was but another illustration of the fate that hung over the heads of the remaining.
In this dire reality, there were no more listeners for this story except for those fighting against time itself. Outside the barriers that protect this structure, humanity had seemingly disappeared. Their future had been declared extinguished by the those who pulled the strings. The opening sabotage had robbed civilization's last defenders of many in number, but still they continued to fight. There have been many setbacks, but they were equaled in fortune, for they were no longer alone. Though the light of humanity has all but extinguished, they pressed on to kindle the flickers of hope.
Within the walls of this secluded structure, in a room in the very heart of this secret, man-made marvel, this new "fairy tale" was being written in hopes there will be readers once more.
Prologue Fragment: Once Upon a Chaldea
"Not sure if this catalyst will actually work, but it's better than nothing."
"As long as it's not more black keys, I can live with it."
Figures cloaked in the shadows moved about while others stood idle to the side with anticipation glinting in their eyes. Multi-pointed, colorful objects were placed upon four pedestals on the outer rim of the circular room. As a figure on the far side placed the last one, they turned to another behind a control panel. After the center of the room was cleared, there was a nod of confirmation followed by the quick throw of a lever.
The placed offerings glowed with the entire color spectrum and resonated with a low hum before being absorbed into their pedestals. The receptors shined a soft white before gently fading into silence. The collected energy shot from the base of the pedestals through large channels carved beneath the floor. The lines of power continued to emit their silent glow as the diverse played their song together.
A surge of energy erupted from the center, then, in a contradiction to its violent entrance, gently slowed to form a floating ball of pale blue. Ancient text and lines formed an intricate and organized conglomeration as they expanded across the floor, letting their glow illuminate its surface. A translucent, elaborate cross, a holographic replication of a signature artifact, formed within the circle itself to complete the vast ritual. It was joined by several more pale orbs that hugged its form and floated above the dance of prana beneath.
From these actions combined, a summoning circle formed, yet a modified version that most modern magi would reject. At its core, it was a bastardized union of science and magecraft. Its definition was a side note; Its vastly improved efficiency was an undeniable fact. Something that should not have been possible without a grand ritual had become but a daily possibility that allowed Chaldea to gather reinforcements for its mission.
There was a pause in the process as the room fell deathly silent. All previous murmurs had been hushed, but the air remained thick with expectation and uncertainty. The balls gently hovered as a contrast to the violent clash within the Fate System as mystery, design, luck, and calculated probability collided. The crowd watched, waiting for the outcome.
Their answer was revealed.
The balls sparked and released a low hum as their blue hue whirled into a rainbow aura. A low gasp and some cheers were released by the crowd as the hum growled louder. The spheres began to rotate clockwise. Round and round, slowly but surely, they accelerated. Within a second, they seemingly lost their form as their speed formed a wide ring around the ritual's core.
Their movement accelerated even further as the central sphere crackled and sparkled with power. Spurred by the calculations and drives, the concentration of energy in the epicenter grew unstable as its shape was threatened. Small sparks of crackling energy flailed like whips as the core threatened to burst with sundering lightning. The harsh song of their dance was deafening as the orechestra reached its crescendo.
Gradually, the rainbow ring slowed down, but then rapidly expanded to the outskirts of the room. The torrent of energy in the ritual's heart became more unstable once the expanding ring reached its apex; It barely missed the figures in observation who remained unstaggered statues. One figure blinked as the ring finally collapsed violently into the core.
The thunderous crack of an explosion was heard, but no one panicked: It's all part of the process. Some spectators shielded their eyes. Many didn't need to, whether being used to the procedure or of a different existence entirely; It was simply just another activity within this facility.
In place of the controlled dance, a single column of energy erupted from the center of the floor, only held in check by a calibrated absorption shield in the ceiling. The absolute surge of powerful energy shook the room with enough force that an outside observer would have related it to a minor earthquake. Despite the violence of the event, the room remained sturdy without any signs of collapsing.
The rumbling slowly died down as the surge of energy lost its power. Its attempt to break its vertical confines had failed; Its onslaught of the roof faded. Gone was the river of uncontrolled prana, only to be replaced with the peaceful glow from a smaller pillar of bright light that illuminated the entire room.
Small smiles were formed. Others raised their brows in curiosity. Yet, all eyes rested upon the origin as the light faded to a soft glow. In the deafening wake of the ritual, an armored figure basked in the fading, residual prana.
Small specs of visually manifested mana fell from the artificial shield above, and floated past the golden hair of the newcomer. The light continued to fade and revealed color: a royal blue, purest white, and shined silver. It was soon obvious the figure was a young female with a fair complexion.
Seconds later, the light had faded fully to reveal the newly arrived servant. The figure in question slowly opened her eyes to shoot her surprisingly steadfast and resolute gaze forward into the audience. Her green eyes scanned the room. She seemed to note the peculiarity of her summoning while observing the figures cloaked in shadow. Her beautiful eyes narrowed in harsh suspicion upon realization that she is not the only servant present... by a shocking amount.
One figure approached from the front of the crowd to slowly reveal themselves in the glow. Black hair and blue eyes took form from the darkness as his gentle approach continued. His white uniform with black adjustment straps appeared from the curtain, contrasting the black formal pants and shoes below. By his magical energy signature, he was clearly a magus, albeit a rather average one.
Her green eyes darted to a fair-skinned hand. Red lines covered its back to confirm the presence of a comforting symbol that would herald the answers sought. Her shoulders sagged slightly from released tension, and she met the eyes of the man in front of her with only a hint of reservations. The rest of the room remained quiet, yet a fair number mirrored the small yet enthusiastic smile on his face; Catalysts completely guaranteed a servant's arrival, after all.
"I am servant Saber," the girl proclaimed. "I ask of you... Are you my master?"
The man's gentle smile grew radiant as he nodded firmly. "Yes, Saber. I am Gudao Fujimaru, your new master."
The young woman nodded in confirmation. She opened her mouth to inquire about the situation, but stopped when he raised his hand in a small gesture of pause.
"We have a lot to discuss about the circumstances of your summoning, but for now at least..." Gudao extended his hand forward to the new arrival, who looked at it with slight surprise before meeting his eyes once more. "Welcome to Chaldea. I look forward to working with you."
There's was but a moment's pause. Saber showed a very subtle but genuine smile and grasped the man's hand with her own. "As do I, Master."
Cheers erupted from the crowd as they shook hands in agreement. He chuckled. "Ah, please… you may call me Gudao, if you want! It's fine to be informal here. That's how it usually winds up anyway."
The newly arrived servant quirked an eyebrow. "...I'm afraid I do not understand what you mea-"
Behind the crown, the double doors to the room quickly slid open to flood the room with the hallway's blinding light. Gudao and Saber released their hands and turned towards the interruption. Some murmurs ran through the audience that now stared towards the doorway at the lone silhouette.
"Hey, Nero! You're late! The summoning was at-"
"Why didn't any of you inform me!? The Empress was told yesterday that she may take part in the activity! Why did no one inform me it was at this time!?"
"Calm down, Miss Empress. Sheesh, you're always like this when you're mad-"
"I never asked you, fox caster! And you! Blackbeard! I demand you cease laughing! You lied and told me it was changed to four!"
A man's unique laugh echoed out. "That's what you get for ratting on my newest contraband! Those magazines weren't easy to get ahold of you know! That was top quality penthouse!"
"…Why didn't you just ask the other Romans?"
"That's what I thought too! It's like her thinking skills are as bad as her singing." There was that unique laughter again.
Yet another voice called out. "Nero's not having the best of weeks, Teach. Back up a bit. She'l-"
"She'll what? Whine louder? Continue to not take my jokes in stride? Gudao made it obvious fighting is not allowed withi-"
There was sniffling, which made the offender pause for a moment. "W-Wait, you're not actually going to-?"
A collective cringe and shiver flew through the crowd as a woman's rather loud sobs echoed into the room.
"…Wow. That bad of a week?"
"Someone stop her wailing!"
"At least she's not singing." Some laughter quickly followed, even as her crying grew louder from the comment.
Slowly the master turned back to look at the newest servant to Chaldea. Her almost stoic features were now etched with a look of total disbelief. Gudao let out a nervous laugh that only made the saber more confused. With a sheepish grin, he looked back towards his bickering servants and sighed.
"As I said, there's, um, quite a lot to explain… and we're often informal at times. Bear with me, please."
Important World Points/Revisions
There are rarely Author's notes in the entire Fragments collection, but all of them are important notifications in regards to proper progression. They mark where supplements attach to the main story. There will also be one at the end of the latest chapter for update/insight purposes that is removed with each new addition.
The world/lore revisions change the nature of F/GO world, I do not advise skipping them to go to Fragment 1. All of them get introduced in the story proper, but they've been collected and placed at the very beginning to act as an early warning. None count as spoilers.If you're a stringent Fate Lore Aficionado, you'll probably dislike this series for one reason or another; That's fine.
The following divergence mark this series as Slight AU.
1: Chaldea Revisions
- Day and night will still pass in Chaldea as normal, and they will follow a calendar year. They are a separate dimension as mentioned in the FGO prologue, so they can conceivably take as long as necessary to complete the Grand Orders.
- Its altitude has been lowered from 6,000 meters to 4,000 meters.
- Humanity is still set to perish in December 2016
- FoC's timeline starts in April instead of FGO's canon June start. There will be occasional time markers as helpful reminders.
2: Regarding Fate Canon Lore
- I will follow the lore as closely as possible but will do occasional tweaks. I can only make it as precise as the translations I find, however.
- The main plot of early singularities are mostly unchanged, so what happened there still applies. Supplements address any differences.
- Events will not appear in their game form. I've taken creative liberties to adapt situations and servants with them in order to properly fit this slightly different timeline.
- The Protag is of a different origin. They're a below-average magus in this timeline instead of a civilian.
- Servants may act slightly OOC. This series focuses heavily on development past their character in relation to their environment, interactions, and formed relations. Some have spent the months since Fuyuki adapting, bonding, and even curiously trying new things in their spare time.
3: Regarding Servants
- There is a larger number that can be deployed, but there are still limitations.
- Alter/Duplicates are handled very differently throughout the series. Rules regarding this are spread throughout the series. There are rarely exceptions, so be warned: duplicate servants don't appear 'easily'.
- Servants can remember past Grail experiences and singularities with vivid clarity.
- If a servant is not specifically mentioned to be present, assume they're not present in Chaldea. A full list can be found on the tumblr archive. Check my profile for links.
- Star ratings from the game do not matter for "summoning chance" appearances. They arrive at random.
- No Non-Canon servants will ever appear.
- I will not introduce canon servants that haven't been added to the game's gacha yet. I need to know the circumstances of being able to summon them. There has been a one-time-only exception to this rule (63).
4: Regarding Staff
- In canon, twenty survived the blast. I've increased the surviving staff number to roughly over a hundred, and the original Pre-Fuyuki count to three hundred. A humanity saving organization on such a tiny staff count is beyond absurd.
- There are multiple new Divisions, including a Science Division. Chaldea has Cryo Vats that are presumably built into the master capsules. They are top tier science devices, so for the place not to have a tech department for maintenance is equally absurd.
- Robots supplement the workforce. A full explanation can be found on the World Revision's tab on the tumblr, mainly so I don't waste any more space here.
- The frozen masters mentioned in the prologue are presumed dead due to Lev's precision planning.
Thanks for taking note of the changes. If you're still willing to continue, especially upon discovering the Science Division and robots, cool. I hope you enjoy.