"Fate/rider phantom"

Chapter 1: "Start of Darkness"

Disclaimer: Fate/stay night and associated characters and material belong to TYPE-MOON. The concept of Ghost Rider belongs to Marvel Comics. I make no money whatsoever from this story.

Author's note: After seeing an AMV set to the Ghost Rider movie trailer starring Sakura as Johnny Blaze and Rider as the titular Ghost Rider, I was inspired to make an actual story out of it. This is not quite a crossover, but more like a fusion . . . with the characters of one fictional series taking on roles akin to characters of another fictional series. And, Rider/Sakura is a somewhat popular yuri pairing, thus begging the question, "What if they were one person?" But enough blabbering from me; I'm going to do this story and it's gonna be good, I hope.

There are more things, in heaven, in hell, and on Earth, than most human beings could possibly dream of. When it comes to hell, even the most warped human being couldn't imagine what sorts of horrors come crawling from there. Even the most warped human couldn't imagine that hell . . . just might be on Earth. Even the more cynical and bitter humans who tend to say that couldn't imagine just how right they are. If they only knew . . .

A dark-haired girl coughed hard.

"Rin?" the plum-haired girl next to her asked. "Are you ok?"

"Yeah, Sakura," Rin replied, smiling. "I'm ok. Don't worry about me."

"Ok . . ." Sakura murmured, still not convinced. If Rin didn't want her pushing it, though, she wouldn't.

"Let's just enjoy our lunch," Rin suggested.

After school, Sakura found herself at the home of her best friend Shiro, who was just calmly preparing for dinner. "Would you like me to help you?" she asked him.

"I don't . . ." Shiro started to say, only to cut himself off with a sigh. "It's all right. You can help if you want to."

As Sakura and Shiro prepared dinner, the former turned to the latter and asked, "How is Rin doing?"

"What do you mean?" Shiro asked.

"She coughs a lot, and she's gotten paler," Sakura explained.

"I'm sure she just came down with a bug," Shiro replied. "She'll be all right soon. I hope."

"So do I," Sakura whispered.

When Sakura returned to her home, she found her older brother Shinji waiting for her with a cold countenance. "Where were you?" he asked.

"With Shiro," Sakura replied quietly.

"And what were the two of you doing?" Shinji further inquired.

"I was just helping him cook," Sakura answered.

"'Cook,' huh? That the popular terminology these days?" Shinji's countenance had shifted from cold to downright cruel. "I don't see why you waste your time with him. He's too naïve to really notice your efforts. I doubt he's aware what girls really exist for, anyway."

"Shiro is a nice person. That's why I like him."

"Newsflash, Sakura: Nice people are just people who either don't know what they want or are too cowardly to act on what they want." Shinji had a malevolent smile on his face.

"I'm happy with what I have."

"So you say. So you say. But what if you could have more? Wouldn't you take it?"

"I'm not like you, Shinji. I don't have this incessant hunger like you do."

"I know what you want. More than Shiro's love, you want Rin to be happy. What if I could make her happy?"

Sakura looked at Shinji suspiciously. "What are you talking about?"

"She's sick, Sakura," Shinji explained, his tone suddenly deep with concern. "Very sick. She isn't long for this world. I've been trying to figure out a way to save her, but I've had no luck. You can help me."

"How? How can I help you?"

"I'll show you." Shinji allowed himself a slight smile, far more benevolent than the malice he had shown before. "Come with me."

Sakura followed Shinji to his room. Once inside, Shinji reached under his bed and pulled out a thick tome. "What is that?" Sakura asked.

"Book of Shadows." Shinji smirked. "I've been practicing magic, but the effects I've been able to invoke have been mediocre at best and piddling at worst. With your help, though, I can do far better."

"Why do you need me?" Sakura wondered.

"Your purity," Shinji replied. "The powers I'm about to invoke to save Rin's life require someone with a pure heart, and I don't have that."

"You . . . need me?" Sakura uttered, shocked by what Shinji had told her. Her older brother, callous and uncaring and utterly selfish, needed her?

"Yes, Sakura." Shinji gently took her hands. "I need you. And Rin needs you."

Sakura nodded. "I'll help you, Shinji. I'll help you."

After their grandfather had gone to sleep, Shinji woke Sakura up. "It's time," he whispered.

The Matou siblings went to Shinji's room, where Shinji had drawn an eight-pointed star within a circle on the floor, hidden by a rug that was no longer there. He sat on one end and silently instructed Sakura to sit on the opposite end. "How do we do this?" she wondered.

"Just leave it to me, Sakura," Shinji replied. "Leave it to me. I'll let you know when your part comes in."

Shinji flipped through the Book of Shadows until he landed on a specific page. Once there, he began to chant in a language that Sakura didn't recognize as either Japanese or English. It scared her, but she stayed still, determined not to flee and sacrifice this chance she had to save Rin. She held fast, even as Shinji's chanting grew louder and his voice turned deeper. Then, Shinji opened his eyes . . . and they were glowing a fiery crimson.

"Shinji?" Sakura uttered.

"I need your blood," Shinji spoke, his voice deep. "Your blood, the blood of a virgin, will complete this ritual. It will allow us to tap into the power that can save Rin."

Sakura extended her hand to Shinji, who pulled out a knife and cut the palm of her hand. Her blood leaked out of the wound and Shinji gently smeared it onto the fingertips of his secondary hand. He cut his bloodstained hand, mixing his blood with Sakura's, and slammed his hand onto the center of the star. He resumed chanting, his voice increasingly deeper, lower, and raspier. Upon the end of the chant, his eyes stopped glowing red and started glowing a fiery gold. The eight-pointed star glowed as well, generating an energy field that paralyzed Sakura.

"Shinji! What are you doing?!" Sakura asked, finally frightened beyond self-control.

"We have reached them," Shinji answered. "We only need to finalize the connection."

"SHINJI!" Sakura cried out, feeling the center of her forehead burn as though she had been touched by a lit match. Unbeknownst to her, a crimson symbol was materializing on her forehead and her plum eyes were turning white as snow.

As quickly as it had started, it was over. The energy field dissipated, allowing Sakura to move once again, and the burning had stopped. When she dared look at Shinji, his eyes were blue again, instead of red or gold. Despite panting from exhaustion, she managed the strength to ask, "Did it work?"

"Yes . . ." Shinji hissed. "Go to bed now, Sakura. Sleep well. When you see Rin again, she will be healthy."

When morning came, Sakura wondered if everything that had just transpired that night wasn't just some odd dream. After all, magic didn't really exist . . . and Shinji wasn't some demonic sorcerer. It was utterly impossible. The only thing that prevented her from dismissing it entirely was the fear of what might happen to Rin if she was as sick as Shinji had claimed. For that alone, she hoped last night wasn't just some dream, no matter how much it might have comforted her to think that.

At school, Sakura ran into Rin. "How are you feeling, Rin?"

"Better than I have in a long time," Rin admitted with a smile. "I don't know, but I feel like I could take on the entire soccer team and win."

"Wow . . ." Sakura uttered. Maybe it worked, after all. Maybe I wasn't dreaming.

When lunchtime came around, Sakura found Shiro. "Hi, Shiro."

"Hey, Sakura," Shiro answered amiably. "How are you?"

"Much better."

"Tohsaka ok?"

"Yeah, she's feeling much better."

Shiro sighed in relief. "I knew it wasn't that serious. I was worried, but . . . thank God."

"Yeah," Sakura sighed. Or thank Shinji and I.

"Wanna come over to my house after school?" Shiro asked. "You and I could . . . cook together."

"Sure," Sakura replied. "I'd like that."

While she was helping Shiro cook and clean around his house, Shiro got a look at her bandaged hand. "What happened to your hand?" he wondered.

"I cut it," Sakura answered.

"On what?" Shiro wondered.

"It's . . . it's embarrassing," Sakura lied, blushing.

"Oh, ok," Shiro said. "You don't have to tell me if you don't want to."

After her chores were over with, Sakura returned home, only to find a grimfaced Shinji. "Shinji? What's wrong?"

"Bad news," Shinji replied. "It's . . . about Rin."

"Is she all right?" Sakura's demeanor was full of dismay. No . . . it can't . . . not after what I . . . what we . . .

Shinji gently guided her into the house, where their grandfather was watching television. "Shame about that girl," he was muttering. "She was so pretty . . . smart, too . . . had her whole life ahead of her . . ."

"Who are you talking about, Grandpa?" Sakura asked, trembling.

"Girl named Rin Tohsaka," the Matou patriarch replied offhandedly. "She went to your school, you know. Shinji was crazy about her."

"Rin . . ." Sakura uttered, on the verge of tears. "How . . . what happened?"

"Hit-and-run," Zoken Matou answered. "Some bastard . . . just ran her over and then drove off . . ."

Sakura couldn't bear to hear anymore; she ran to her room, crying. "It's not fair! It's not fair! It's not fair . . ." She buried her face in her pillow, muffling her cries. So consumed she was by anguish that she almost didn't notice Shinji sitting on her bed and gently stroking her hair.

"It's going to be ok, Sakura . . ." he whispered. "It'll be ok . . . you still have me . . ."

"Shinji . . . what went wrong?" Sakura wondered. "How come we couldn't save Rin?"

"Nothing went wrong," Shinji replied. "We saved her from the cancer. Unfortunately, the Fates were still determined to cut her life string. If it wasn't the cancer, they would have found another way. It's just the way things have to be."

"It's not fair!" Sakura protested. "Rin was a good person! Why would the Fates end her life so soon?"

"'Only the good die young.'" A dark smile formed on Shinji's face.

"What does that say about us?" Sakura dared to look at Shinji . . . and saw something indescribably hard in his eyes.

"It says that we will live for a long time." Shinji's voice was a cold monotone.


"The heavens did this. They took Rin from you, from me, from everyone that loved her. They will pay . . . and you will help me."

"How . . . how can I help you?"

"Your blood is mixed with mine. We are bound, now and forever, to each other. When the time comes, vengeance will be ours . . . and you will be the one that claims it."

"Yes," Sakura murmured.

"Swear to me, Sakura, swear that you will be loyal to me above all others and vengeance will be yours," Shinji whispered passionately.

"I swear, Shinji . . ."

"Good." Shinji touched her forehead, and she felt once more the burning sensation she had experienced last night. Her mouth opened in a silent scream of pain, but with rage burning in her heart, as her eyes turned white and the strange crimson symbol formed on her forehead once again. Before Sakura passed out from the pain, she heard a strange voice whisper in her mind.

You're mine, Sakura Matou, now and forever.

End Notes: Time to end it here. I would make the chapter longer, as I am normally wont to do, but I've been advised that such would be a bad idea. Ergo, the material that would have been in this first chapter will be diverted into the chapter following this one. For those of you who have seen Ghost Rider or have any awareness of the basic history of the comic version, you certainly know what's coming. For those of you who have no awareness of Ghost Rider but know Fate/stay night (particularly Heaven's Feel), you might have some idea of what's coming, too. Anyway, thanks for reading, and hope you enjoyed.