So you may prepare your guardians, build your monuments to a so-called "free world", but take heed... there will be no victory in strength.
Professor. Huntsmen. Headmaster of Beacon Academy. Those were the three titles that the man named Ozpin was commonly known by in the world of Remnant. While a select few people were aware of what he considered his true profession to be, as the hidden guardian of his world, none other than him knew of the duty he had beyond that.
He sat at his desk, staring intensely at his scroll, checking for any messages related to the crisis that was at hand. He was yet again greeted with none. He paced around his office, mentally cursing his inability to do anything at the moment to help with the current situation. Being the headmaster of one of the four huntsmen academies in the world, suddenly leaving for a trip to the northern continent wasn't something he could really justify with any good excuse. Especially not with a new school year on the horizon anyway. Having suffered through tragedy after tragedy throughout his life, Ozpin was used to this feeling of helplessness, and knew that he couldn't let himself do anything rash. But after receiving the latest message from his colleague, a calm state of mind certainly wasn't a mindset that he could possibly feel at the moment. He sat down once again, staring at the message he had received hours ago.
Oz. Autumn was attacked. She's barely hanging on. I took her to James, but it's not looking good. I'm on my way to meet up with you now. ~ Qrow.
His eyebrows furrowed as that dreadful message lingered in his mind. For one of the maidens of the four seasons to be in critical condition from an attack could only mean one thing. If she could not be saved, an incredible source of power would soon end up in the wrong hands, and the world of Remnant's fragile peace could once again shatter. He stared outside, gazing at the school being basked in the moon's light. What should have been a calming sight only made anxiety continue to creep up on him, as the possibilities of how wrong things could go ran through his mind.
"Oz!" The door suddenly slammed open, causing the headmaster to turn around quickly, relieved that his trusted friend had finally arrived.
"Qrow! What happened? How's the Fall Maiden?" He demanded.
"James and his crew are keeping her stable in Atlas but…" Qrow paused, not sure how else to word his terrible news. "...It's only gonna delay the inevitable." Ozpin let out a sigh as fears were confirmed. Not wanting to waste any time, he quickly steeled himself to prepare for the task at hand.
"How many were there?" He asked.
"Three. Got a good look at them. At the very least we know who they are. But…" Qrow trailed off.
"But what?" Ozpin asked.
"Her powers. She wasn't just attacked, Oz. Part of her powers were stolen." Ozpin's eyes widened at that. That shouldn't have been possible. None of what Qrow was telling him should have been possible. The more Qrow spoke, the more his fears were being confirmed. A maiden falling to three assailants and having her powers stolen wasn't something that could have occured due to ordinary lowly criminals. No, this attack must have been planned for a while.
Which meant...she had made her move, and there was little time for him to respond.
"Qrow. Tell James to have her moved here." Ozpin replied. "Until we can figure things out, the safest place she'll be is in the-"
Before Qrow could offer any sort of response to Ozpin's plans, both of their thoughts were interrupted by the loudest crack of thunder and the brightest flash of lightning they've heard and seen in their lives. Then the ground shook more ferociously than it ever had before. Then it suddenly stopped. The room once again had returned to a state of dead silence, as if nothing had happened.
"What the…" Qrow looked around outside, the damage from the split-second quake thankfully being minimal. "What just…Oz?" He looked back to find Ozpin looking at his scroll, a look of dread plastered all over his face before he grabbed his staff and ran towards the door. "Oz, wait!" Qrow yelled as he ran after him, the headmaster not saying a word as he ran.
Ozpin dashed to the elevator and pushed the button calling for the lowest floor, not giving Qrow time for him to hop inside. He prayed to whatever god that was listening that what he feared was happening wasn't the case. A minute later Ozpin found himself inside the Vault. The lowest level of Beacon Academy. He ran down the dimly lit hallway until he reached a dead end. He searched the floor and found a small circular indent in it. He plunged his staff into the indent, causing the wall in front of him to light up, opening up the secret passageway that led to his destination. He ran down it for what felt like miles until a massive red door stood before him.
Ozpin put his hand on the door. While he couldn't unlock it without the power of the Fall Maiden, what he could do was use what little magic that was left inside of him to at least be able to look inside. He focused all his power on the door, before it slowly became more and more transparent, allowing the beautiful crown within it to be shown before his eyes, and the longer he stared at the it, the more worse he realized the situation was becoming. Of course, he thought. It was foolish to pray.
For the gods had abandoned Remnant so very long ago.
The Relic of Choice, one of the four artifacts that represented the fundamentals that humanity was founded upon. It was a crown that was adorned with jewels that normally glowed vibrant pink lights.. But now, those pink lights were flickering. They were turning black, then back to pink, then black, then pink again. Black. Pink. Black. Pink.
The pink fizzled and faded, and darkness was all that remained in the jewels. Ozpin was so transfixed by the transforming crown that he didn't even hear the footsteps behind him.
"Oz!" Qrow cried out. "What the hell just happened?"
"...Qrow." Ozpin muttered quietly as he turned to him. "You mentioned your niece had silver eyes, correct?"
"Yeah? What about it?" Qrow asked, still waiting for a proper answer.
"Does she still wish to enroll at Beacon?" Ozpin asked, his stoic tone not changing.
"More than anything. Kid's talented, but she'll need at least two years before she's even close to ready for this place, if I had to guess."
"Then make sure you train her well. Have her be ready in half that time." Ozpin replied as he turned back to the now dark glowing crown. "Because as of now, the countdown has begun."
That was the only appropriate description that Sayaka Miki could use to describe her current predicament. Alone she stood, trapped with unbreakable chains clad on her legs and wrists behind her back. She couldn't even speak, for a mask had covered the entire bottom half of her face. In front of her was a room that had an atmosphere of infinite emptiness. Empty chairs littered the room, one of them being the throne that...demon often sat upon when she made her presence here. In the distance in front of her stood the walking dolls whom that demon commanded, who continued to point and laugh at her from afar.
How long had it been? She thought. How long since she had almost freed her best friend from the clutches of that traitor? How long since she had been trapped in this position? Days? Months? Years? She couldn't tell. Thanks to her, nothing about the world she lived in made sense anymore. But she couldn't give up. Not with what she had now. Not with the last bit of hope her friend had told her to cling on to before she once again fell into the demon's clutches. Somehow, eventually, she would find a way out of here.
Sayaka immediately silenced her thoughts as soon as she felt the demon's presence in the room again. No matter what, she couldn't let her find out about the last trump card that Madoka Kaname had given her. She felt the air tightening as another void of darkness opened up in front of her, upon which her nemesis walked out.
Homura Akemi. Sayaka glared at the transfer student responsible for this mess. That terrible smile that clashed with her cold, dead eyes sent shivers down Sayaka's spine. She only made that smile when she knew she had the upper hand, in the very few times Sayaka saw her like that. Sayaka knew something else was wrong when she realized that the portal behind her wasn't closing, and the air around her grew even tighter. Then her glaring eyes widened in fear.
Out from the portal, a tall woman followed Homura. Sayaka was horrified, she hadn't seen anyone like her before. Her skin was as white as snow. Her hair was as white as her skin, and was braided into six small ponytails on the side, making the back of her head look like a six-legged spider. Her eyes were blood red, with what appeared to be veins seeping out of them on the side of her face. Laid over her body was a dark robe with red designs that resembled eyes plastered all over it. Her clothing gave off a wave of elegance to her movements that dissipated once Sayaka made eye-contact with her. She had a piercing gaze that Sayaka felt might have killed her If looks had that power.
"So…" She spoke, her voice soft and calm, contrasting with that of her demonic appearance. "This is your domain." The woman's head turned to look at her surroundings. "Hollow. Empty. Bitter. No different from which I hail from." She added, turning towards the other demon in the room.
"I wouldn't describe it as such." Homura replied, turning to face her. "After all, I made this world for the happiness of the one I love. It's only those who choose to reject that happiness that see it that way." She gazed at Sayaka as she said those words, causing her to clench her fists in disgust as Homura looked back at the woman. "But let's get down to business. I've assigned each of your followers a job for them to do, and to ensure they don't fail, I'll be actively supporting them on each of their missions." Her smile widened. "Actually no...it would be better to say that they will be supporting me. However, know this." Homura's tone darkened. "Gathering these embodiments will create powerful enemies for you and your world."
"I wouldn't have it any other way." The woman smiled in return.
"She...She knows I can hear them right?" Sayaka watched the scene with dread in her eyes. Who was this woman and what were they talking about? Why was Homura of all people talking about whatever messed up plans she had right in front of her?
"I couldn't believe it when I saw them for myself." Homura continued, taking her large Soul Gem out and gazing into it. "Every one of them...these heroes...they all embodied the same ideals that she did, and they have the strength to prevail alongside it. They all have that hope...that kindness...that faith in the best of humanity, and they never waver from that path."
"And that faith in humanity is not misplaced." The woman replied. "It's true that the ability to derive strength from hope is humanity's greatest attribute. When banded together, unified against a common enemy, they can stand against anything, and are a notable threat." The smile on her face grew more sinister. "But divide them, place doubt into their minds, and any semblance of power they once had will fade away."
"I know that all too well." Homura nodded in agreement as she gazed towards Sayaka once again. "And to show you my convictions, my will to see this through to the end, I will do what I should have done a long time ago." She reached an open hand towards Sayaka before clenching it into a fist. Suddenly the chains around Sayaka's feet vanished, and she felt herself being pulled downwards, landing on her knees in front of the two demons. Homura walked towards her captive and grabbed her by the chin, making direct eye-contact with her as she removed her mask.
"It's unfortunate that I have to do this to you, Miki Sayaka." She spoke to her, that dry smile never leaving her face. "It's a shame, having you around had provided a net benefit. You always were a source of joy in her life, after all. But where you're going...I will no longer have to worry about you poking your nose where it doesn't belong." Her fingers cradled across Sayaka's cheeks. "Now, you can live out the rest of your days in the same isolation that I was forced to suffer."
"I knew it...I knew all along what kind of monster you were all this time." Sayaka growled back. "Was rewriting the universe and becoming a demon not enough for you, transfer-student?! What the hell are you planning? Who is she?!" Her words fell on deaf ears and her pupils dilated in fear, as Homura Akemi pulled her fingers back, and responded with a simple clap of her hands.
The chains that had bound Sayaka's wrists had vanished. But before she had a chance to react, she felt a breeze...no...a wind coming from behind her. She turned around. The wall of the room behind her was no more. An endless dark abyss of a void had taken its place. The fear in her eyes turned into horror as she realized what she felt wasn't a wind at all, but rather a vacuum pulling herself towards that void. The world around her began to break apart and fall to pieces, with Homura Akemi giving her the same emotionless look she hated so much as she fell to her knees, unable to stand. She grabbed the ledge of the floor she was standing on as the vacuum grew stronger. The fear in her eyes turned into hatred as her grip loosened, and she was sent hurtling towards the void, cursing Homura's name before the demon was once again greeted with silence.
"Farewell, Miki Sayaka. I hope we never meet again." Homura stated, clapping her hands once again, the room returning to how it once was. She turned back towards her visitor, the two of them reaching out their hands and shaking them in agreement. An aura of darkness emanated from the both of them.
"Let's begin...Salem." Homura stated while Sayaka screamed as she felt herself being hurtled throughout the void. It was as if she was reliving all the memories of when she had gone through the painful process of becoming a witch. Every part of her body screamed in pain as she felt herself tumbling in whatever direction she was heading in. Nevertheless she clutched her Soul Gem, shut her eyes, and prayed. She prayed for the miracle her best friend believed in to pull through, and prayed that she would be able to complete the task she was given.
The last thing she remembered was her falling, then hitting something hard. She used the last of her remaining strength to open her eyes and saw a young brown-haired girl she didn't recognize walking towards her, before she slipped into unconsciousness.
But perhaps victory is in the simpler things that you've long forgotten; things that require smaller, more honest souls.
A/N: Hello folks. This is a personal project that I've been planning for a long time. I know many of you want to see the ending for Manly Magi Kamina Magica, and I DO plan to end it someday, though it may not be the kind of ending you expect. That aside, I've been wanting to make a mega crossover like this for years, and I have several chapters already written.
I plan to keep a consistent release schedule of one chapter every two weeks. With my schedule as it is now, I have a lot more time for writing, so I believe I can maintain this goal for a while. Should that change, I will let you know.
Now some of you may be thinking that this is a similar idea to BHS' story Shattered Skies. I'd be lying if that fic's presence didn't give me some inspiration, even though I'd only read a few chapters. Nevertheless, I have spoken to him about this idea and he has offered me fantastic advice and encouragement for me to continue, as well as beta-read for me. I'm very grateful for his help and I'm very excited to see this idea finally go off the ground.
Please review, as I'd like as much feedback and criticism as possible.
I hope you enjoy.
150 YEARS, 5 MONTHS, 4 DAYS, 10 HOURS, 8 MINUTES UNTIL THE CONVERGENCE.
NEXT CHAPTER: AWAKENING