Author's Note: Just a bit of a quick explanation so things in this AU aren't too complicated: the guilds are gangs, the knights are police, Terca Lumireis is a city (large, but not as large as the world in the game, granted), and most of the game's cities are separated into "districts" within Terca Lumires. And, of course, this takes place in a 1930s crime setting, so there are touches of modern amenities you'd expect from the 1930s.

Some events in the story follow the game's plot, but after a while it'll go off in another direction...

This is my first multi-chaptered fic in a while so updates may be a bit slow for a bit.

Disclaimer: I do not own Tales of Vesperia.


Prologue

The city lights were lit low that evening, fluttering lazily through a thin layer of fog along the street. There were only a few people meandering the sidewalks—the wandering homeless and some swaying couples—as two cars sped up the block, side by side, until they spun around a corner and down another rain-slick road.

It was the perfect time of night—a little before midnight, to be precise—in Yeager's opinion, the time when the city's unsavory stock could prowl the streets without attracting unwanted attention. Not that he would bring in too may curious eyes, at least; Yeager blended perfectly with the crowds, even in the harsh light of day. None of the regular, everyday citizens seemed to suspect that he was the leader of Leviathan's Claw, one of the most powerful underground gangs in Terca Lumireis.

A voice beckoned him from the comfortable shadows of a nearby table. "You're here."

Yeager stopped and turned briskly on his heel. He wordlessly slicked back a loose strand of hair and seated himself across from another man at an outdoor restaurant table.

"Thank you for making it on time," the man who had summoned him said, idly stirring his coffee with a spoon. "I need our meeting to be quick. I already have doubts about meeting in public like this."

"Don't worry about it too much. I already told you, the area is secure. No one terribly important will see you here," Yeager replied. He nodded up the street.

His companion's eyes flickered upward, a smile pulling at the corners of his lips when he saw a pair of hooded men standing at the corner. "You came prepared."

"I always do."

"In any case…" The man heaved a quiet sigh and took a quick sip of his coffee before he slid a piece of paper across the table. "I've completed the contract I proposed to you several days ago."

Yeager took the form and looked it over with a careful eye. "So I see. Hmm." He paused for a moment, his mouth becoming a thin line over his chin. "You want to flush out all the…nasty underground dealings, am I correct?"

"Yes, that's part of it."

"And you need our help?" Yeager chuckled and put the paper back on the table. "You do know what Leviathan's Claw is, don't you?"

"One of the gangs working under Altosk. I'm aware," his companion said, pushing the paper toward him again. "But my contacts tell me that your group is starting to…how should I put it? Separate from the rest of them, I suppose."

Yeager raised an eyebrow. This man was better informed than he originally thought. That made things just a little more risky. Perfect, he thought with another mental smirk.

"I'll take that as a yes," the man said, a sly grin spreading over his lips. "Listen. If you read my contract clearly, you'd see I'm willing to make a nice deal with you."

Yeager looked down at the paper again, his eyes skimming the carefully typewritten text. "Ohh. I see, I see!" His hard gaze switched back to the man sitting across from him. "I think I might be able to agree with this."

The man pulled his hand from his coat pocket and extended it toward Yeager. "It'll work out then, yes? Leviathan's Claw will help me with my end, and I'll help you with yours. I find this...blastia to be very interesting, but you know I can't get a hold of it myself. I'm sure you can help me with that, can't you?"

Yeager took his hand, tentatively at first, and shook it. "Ja, I think we can," he said. "I think we can indeed…"


The book's text was getting harder and harder for her to read.

Estellise put a hand to her drooping eyes and closed them. The clock beside her read 12:48, but it felt much later than that. She wanted to keep reading her book—she was just at the good part—but she didn't think she could stay up much longer.

I've got to stop trying to pull all-nighters like this, she thought.

The phone at the desk beside hers began to ring. Estellise started and dropped the novel from her hand. It was too late for calls, wasn't it? Her father's office had closed hours ago.

Nevertheless, she reached over and took the receiver from its cradle. "Full Moon Inc., hello?"

A burst of static crackled on the other end before a hoarse, quiet voice spoke. "Child of Full Moon?"

Estellise narrowed her eyes. "Who? No, this is Full Moon Inc."

"But are you the child of Full Moon? Estellise?"

Her breath caught in her throat. "W-What?"

"Excellent," the voice said with a gruff chuckle. "Keep an eye on your windows and doors. Your big bad security isn't going to be helpful for much longer."

Estellise tightened her grip on the phone. "Hello? Who is this? Hello?!"

Something clicked and the line went dead.

Her father's security guards threw the door open only moments later.