Souls, Swords and Strife

Disclaimer: I don't own any of these characters, apart from Liam. He's mine, all mine. The others are from games that have already been created; I'm just borrowing them for a bit like everybody else does. Characters belong to Namco and Nintendo and Capcom.

A.N. With thanks to my friend Rosie, who proofread and corrected this story for me. This has been re-written due to some mistakes on my part. Readers from the 1st chapter will find some answers at the end of the second chapter!!!!!

Chapter 1: Siegfried

What a Chimera, then, is man! What a novelty! What a monster. What a chaos, what a contradiction what a prodigy! – Blaise Pascal, Pensees

A half demolished chapel in Germany stood on top of a hill, over looking a village. It was large but half the floor had fallen away, as had most of the roof. On one side of the chapel the stained glass windows remained intact but opposite, they were almost completely shattered as was the wall to the left of them. The reason for this destruction was clashes between Soul Edge and Soul Calibur, two powerful swords one good, one evil.

Now both swords were silent, still in their masters hands.

Night had fallen around now and a dark figure stood in the chapel. He was of a slightly under average height, and well built. Moonlight shone through the window behind him, casting a dark shadow on the floor. His long blonde hair waved around, brushing his waist. He stood, armour over his green trousers, he wore no top but he felt no cold as the wind blew around him, his right hand clutched a huge sword that rested on his shoulder, while his other hand held onto his left hip. His cold blue eyes watched the moon pass over head and he turned around to face the window behind him.

The moon and stars light shone onto his bare upper body and his face, highlighting every line and crevice on his body, showing the tensed muscles in his stomach and chest. He slowly turned his head to the left, showing the scar through his right eye and cheek as he closed his eyes slowly, and then shook his head.

"Will I ever be normal again,?" he thought "Will I ever be accepted back into society, will I be able to sleep without giving into this sword and not wake up with bodies around me"

He opened his eyes again and returned to looking at the stars.

"Can I ever escape the guilt over my father's death...? Will I ever be Siegfried again and not Nightmare?".

These thoughts tormented his mind night after night and all he wanted was some peace.

"No," he shook his head, "How can I after what I've done, and perhaps I deserve this torment, this torture."

He heard a sound behind him, and slowly turned his head right and glanced through the corner of his eye to see a young man standing behind him. He was the same height as Nightmare or Siegfried, which ever he was now. This young man had blonde hair, a bright, golden blonde and deep blue eyes, he had strange long pointed ears and wore strange clothes.

Nightmare turned his head back to the window.

"Are you Nightmare?" the boy asked, he had a soft almost musical voice.

"Yes," Nightmare responded "What do you want?" His low, growling voice was quiet, but held a strong note of annoyance and hostility.

The boy let out a noise that sounded like 'this is Nightmare?'

"You're not what I was expecting, to say the least," he stated. Nightmare turned around and looked at the boy, noting the look of surprise and disappointment on his face.

"And what were you expecting?" Nightmare asked

"Some of the villagers said there was a sort of humanoid monster up here called Nightmare, they said he was about an average height and well built almost stocky, but he wore dark blue armour, and had a huge mutated brown arm and brown skin and red eyes."

Nightmare nodded and shuddered

"That was me, before I returned to normal, before I regained my sanity, but why are you here?"

"They said that this Nightmare had been shouting a lot when he first got here, it sounded like he was in pain they said, when the chapel fell silent they wondered what had happened, but were too afraid to come up here, when I said I was a warrior they sent me up here to check you out."

"Humph" was all Nightmare could get out "So they were hoping I was dead...well, you can tell them that I'm not and I'm planning not to die anytime soon."

"What do you do up here all day?" asked the boy

"I torment myself," was his reply

"Why?"

"It's a long story."

"Well, it's lucky I've got a lot of free time on my hands then isn't it?"

"You're offering to keep me company?" he asked with noticeable surprise

"If you want me to, besides, you look like you could use some company and someone to talk to."

"You'll listen?"

"I'm all ears, you may have noticed." the boy chuckled lightly flashed a brilliant smile

"But first... I think we should introduce ourselves, after all you're real name can't be Nightmare can it?"

"I suppose not."

"So, I'm Link, Link Herro, and before you ask about the ears, I'm from Hyrule, in another world, I'm a Hylian, and I'm also the hero of time and a knight," he stated

"Impressive, especially for such a young lad."

"I'm 17; I wouldn't consider myself that young."

"My real name, if you're interested is Siegfried, Siegfried Schtauffen."

"Siegfried?"

"Yes, its German it means Victory – Peace."

"Well, are you going to tell me your story or not?"

"It started seven years ago, when I was 16," he started "I was a mercenary and a leader of a group of brigands now as the Schwartz- wind, Black –wind, my father had been murdered and I was looking for a sword called Soul Edge, it was said to be the most powerful weapon in existence, I thought I could use it to slay my fathers murderer." He looked at Link and shook his head, Link sat on the floor watching Nightmare, never taking his eyes of him for a second. Nightmare turned around to look out the window again and continued with his story.

"One day I came upon a shore and found a corpse with a large sword much like the size of the sword I'm holding now, by the side of it, I knelt down to get a closer look at the sword but as I did flames rose around both the sword and the corpse as if to protect them both, I defeated the corpse and walked over to the sword that had fallen on the floor."

He sighed deeply.

"As a stood over the sword it, well, spoke to me." He looked at Link, who had arched an eyebrow at the odd statement.

"It spoke to you?"

"Yes, I don't mean it actually opened a mouth and spoke I mean I heard its voice in my head, it told me that if I took hold of it and fed it the souls of people, then I could resurrect my father, I didn't realise that the sword was Soul Edge."

"So you found it," Link stated, "What happened when you took hold of the hilt?"

"As soon as I took hold of the hilt the sword took over my mind and body, and I became known as Nightmare, apparently I went on to strike fear into every corner of Europe."

Nightmare, or more accurately, Siegfried turned back to the window. He cleared his throat and continued

"For three years I killed people constantly, to feed Soul Edge with the people's souls. Then a warrior came wielding a sword called Soul Calibur, it had energy completely opposite to Soul Edge's evil. Soul Edge couldn't contend with this power and I fell into a void where I was imprisoned." Through out the story Siegfried's voice had been a dull monotone, completely emotionless. Link could see part of his face and could see he was staring forward intently; he had kept his face completely blank and expressionless.

"So what happened to you and Soul Edge?"

"Well somehow I survived and regained some of my sanity, but of course the memory of all the sins I had committed came back to me, along with the realisation that it was me who had murdered my father." Siegfried lowered his head and eyes, looking down at the floor; he sighed and looked back up at the window. To his left Link was sitting on the floor a slightly confused look on his face.

"So...let me get this straight, you murdered your own father but didn't realise it, then lost your sanity, went on a mass killing spree for three years, were defeated by a warrior with a sword called Soul Calibur fell into a void with Soul Edge, regained your sanity and realised you had murdered your father?" Link asked

"Yup, that's right."

"So... is that it or what?"

"No, that's not all... I escaped from the void and tried to make amends, but at night I would try to be as far away from other humans as possible, however every morning I would find the bodies of people around me when I woke up and I reasoned it out that Soul Edge took over my body while I slept...

After four years I was completely Nightmare again, taken over totally by the sword, I started killing again to feed Soul Edge, this time however, Soul Edge was trying to restore it's full power, it took on a quest to find every last piece of itself to make itself fully restored, I killed and fought. I continued to travel when strong warriors started to confront me, there were seven extremely strong warriors, stronger than all the ones I had faced before, one by one I defeated six of them, the seventh was a man named Raphael. Some people call the battle with the final warrior 'the destined battle'. I was told that this was because, usually, that you fight someone whom you know for a certain reason."

"And these reasons would be?"

"Well... for example, I had a golem named Astaroth under me; one of my strongest warriors, his destined battle was with a Japanese pirate named Maxi, whose crew Astaroth had slaughtered years ago.

I don't know why I fought Raphael, perhaps because I was the wielder of Soul Edge and he wanted it..."

"I see."

"I beat Raphael, without much difficulty, and I went onto fight the creature known as Inferno but after I finally defeated it... my sanity returned, my soul suddenly awakened and I resisted the evil. I brought the sword here; you see that large pit where the floor has collapsed?"

"Yes," Link replied, peering over the edge

"I threw Soul Edge down there to stop anyone else from getting it, if they do they'll be taken over by it too, I can't let that happen."

"Why do you guard it when it's been thrown down there?"

"It's my way of trying to make amends for the sins I committed," Siegfried answered bluntly

"But what about you're story,?" he then asked

"Mine doesn't matter that much, but that last thing you said caught my interest especially," Link murmured

"Why?" Siegfried asked suspiciously

"Let me give you the basics, I come from Hyrule, right."

"Fine, but what's that go to do with anything."

"It's got everything to do with why I'm here... When I was ten years old I lived in a forest, with a race known as the Kokiri who are immortal; they're children who don't age, I believed I was one of them, I was however an outcast in the village for reasons that I won't go into," Link paused and swallowed then continued with his story "I was chosen to go and see the Deku tree, the guardian of the forest, I got to him but he had been cursed and he wanted me to break the curse... I did successfully, but the Deku tree died anyway, so I was told to go to Hyrule castle and talk to the princess so I went off, a series of events followed and I became the Hero of Time, and I saved Hyrule from Ganondorf, an evil sorcerer who wanted to control Hyrule."

"However," Link continued, as he sat on the floor, but he paused when Siegfried walked over to him, he slid onto the floor and sat in front of Link.

"However," Link said again "Ganondorf has returned to Hyrule, he's trained his people, the Gerudos' to fight again and once more he's trying to take over Hyrule and it's my job to stop him. My king has prepared his armies as quickly as possible, but the time of war is coming closer everyday. Ganondorf is too strong, so I have to stop him before he starts the war, but he has four main companions in league with him now... and they're from this world."

"So you need help, who are these people, do you know?" asked Siegfried

"I don't know their names but I can describe them and they're all weird."

"Go on, I might know them."

"Firstly there's a strange mutated humanoid looking thing, it has green scaly skin, red eyes, fangs and spikes protruding from various areas of its body, it's also quite muscular and very tall about six foot five, know him?"

"I think I've fought him before, I think it's Necrid, if these people are from this world then it's entirely possible that this person is Necrid, what about the others?"

"The second one is not even human, it looks bit like a brown skeleton, but it has a giant reddish eye in what would be its ribcage."

Siegfried nodded but gave no answer

"The next one has grey skin, he has red eyes and a beard and judging from the clothes he wears he's a pirate and the last one is tall about six foot five or four, he's very strong and carries a huge axe and somehow his skin changes colour. Whenever he came to the castle he has had different coloured skin, he's been purple, brown and white, and for some reason he sticks nails in himself, it really freaked the princess last time.... Do you know who they are?"

"Yes... the second one is charade, I didn't even know he was in his humanoid form... the third is Cervantes and the last is Astaroth."

"Didn't you say that Astaroth worked under you and he killed that pirate's crew?" Link asked

"I did, yes," Siegfried responded

Link stood up and walked over to the shattered window frames and put his hands behind his back and looked down at the village below.

"So what now?" asked Siegfried

"Now...... I need to find somebody in this world who can help me defeat them."

"But why did you say earlier that when I was saying about trying to redeem myself catch your interest?"

Link turned around and looked at Siegfried who was getting up off the floor. Link smiled to himself and looked out the window again and answered.

"It caught my interest because... well to tell the truth, I was wondering if I could persuade you to join me to... redeem yourself."

"And why would you want me?" Siegfried asked again

"Because you have knowledge of these people and you're a warrior, a strong warrior, that's what I'm looking for."

"And do I have to join you?"

"No you don't have to; you can if you want to."

"When are you leaving here?"

"Tomorrow, around midday, I'll be sleeping just outside the chapel, I'll be getting ready to go at ten, and I'll have some breakfast, saddle up my horse and move on... I've been travelling for a week and you're the first person to match what I'm looking for," Link finished with a sigh and walked out of the chapel to a little hollow outside, slumped down in it pulled out a blanket to cover himself with and fell asleep.

Up in the chapel Siegfried was standing looking at the moon, debating whether he should travel with Link and help him ... or not.

Link woke up at eleven o'clock, he stretched and yawned. He quickly looked at the sun and shadows, trying to determine what time it was.

"It must be at least eleven o'clock, this is great, my country is in danger and I'm over sleeping, brilliant absolutely brilliant Linkie-boy," Link muttered to himself.

"Do you always talk to yourself Link?" said a harsh voice behind him

Link turned around to see Siegfried standing behind him, sword on his shoulder again.

"No, just when I'm annoyed with myself... wait, what are you doing here?"

"I've decided to join you, it gets lonely up there, plus no-one's gonna go down that chasm and live to talk about it that... and I need an adventure, I'm bored of this place."

Link smiled and stood up

"Great, glad to know that this journey hasn't been a complete waste of time." he brushed the grass off his clothes and picked up the blanket and shoved it into Epona's saddle bag.

"Let's go," Link commented as he took Epona's reins and started to lead her down the hill, with Siegfried following. After about ten minutes they reached the bottom and walked through the village, garnering strange looks from the villagers, the only villager who spoke English ran up to them and spoke to Link quietly, asking who the strange man with him was, Link gave no answer in the form of a name and muttered 'Well let's just say you don't need to worry about Nightmare anymore'. The man shrugged his shoulders and handed Link some food wrapped up in a cloth. Link thanked him, putting the food away quickly and continued towards the exit of the village. All the villagers who hadn't seen Link before gathered on the sides of the street, staring at the two men, muttering among themselves. Link and Siegfried merely ignored them and left the village, they walked for about half an hour until they came to a small wood which they stopped in to talk.

"So what now, Link?" Siegfried asked again

"Do you ever stop asking questions?"

"No."

"Fine, now... we need to see if we can pick up anyone else... who do you recommend?"

"If you want people to fight, they'll need motivation and you'll need to know they're good warriors... the closet one that I know is Raphael."

"Would he be willing to fight?"

"Possibly, it depends what is in it for him, but he has a foster daughter and might not be easily motivated to leave her."

"Hmmm... that could be a problem," Link mused

"Then again... Raphael will do anything to protect his daughter, like I said it depends on what's going on at the moment... I suggest that we try to find him and find out what's happening with him," Siegfried suggested

"Fair enough, but where will he be?"

"Most likely not near Rouen, probably in mid or east France, which will mean we haven't got too far to travel, we're only a few miles away from the border of Germany, we could easily make it into France by night."

"Well there's no harm in trying."

They set off again, walking quickly with Siegfried in the lead, neither of them spoke, they walked in silence thinking about their own problems after about two hours of walking they stopped and rested.

"How far away would you say France is now?" Link asked, while taking an apple off a nearby tree

"About two maybe three miles, I suggest we head for Boulay, one of the closest to the border, it's not tiny seen as it's on the maps but Raphael is unlikely to be in any smaller place"

"Right, well it probably won't take us long to get there but I'd rather not wait around," Link said quickly, he took another apple off the tree and threw it to Siegfried, then started to eat his own apple. They started walking again it took them about three quarters of an hour to reach the border.

"I think we may be here," Link said looking at a sign to his right, what it said though he couldn't tell

"Yep let's go."

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Chapters will be updated every week, usually on a Monday.

P.S: Wesker, Leon, Maxi, Yunsung, Link and Siegfried rule!!