Inside Louise's Room
"I missed you so much, Louise." Princess Henrietta embraced Louise who is still at the floor. "It's been so long."
"P-Princess, you shouldn't connect yourself to this lowly noble." Louise said which somehow offended the Princess. Henrietta broke off from Louise as she pulled her up.
"How could you say that, Louise?" Henrietta said with some sadness. "We've been friends since childhood, and I care for those close to me. So please, enough with the formalities."
"I-I'm sorry, Princess." Louise apologized with a streak of red across her cheeks.
"It's ok." She then looked at Louise with some seriousness. "Louise, where is your familiar?"
Louise's face loses color as the crime her familiar committed pops up into her mind. She then stutters as she tries to explain her innocence.
"I-It's not my fault." She panicked. "My fa-familiar had decided on his own and I-I have n-no knowledge of his act."
"It's alright, Louise." Henrietta placed her hands over Louise's shoulders. "I just need to talk to him."
Louise, still panicking as tear drops start to form from her pleading eyes, isn't able to answer as she tries to come up alibis for her defense. Saito then decides to reveal her presence.
"I'm right here, Princess." Henrietta heard a male voice behind her.
She looks behind her and is surprised to see a tall armored being that she saw earlier among the students.
What surprises her is that she didn't felt his presence earlier and to know that he is that close to her somehow catches her off-guard.
She had inquired the said person's location by investigating the intrusion at Count Mott's residence. She found out that the person took a maid that originally works for the academy.
She has her own dislike to the royal messenger due to his inappropriate acts towards his maids.
Henrietta then composes herself before talking to the armored being called Spartan.
"It is a pleasure to meet you, Spartan." She bowed her head a bit, much to Louise's surprise. "Words of your actions at Count Mott's residence had reached the palace. I was surprised myself when I heard about your incredible abilities and to know that not one is killed."
"What is the palace's reaction about the incident, Princess?" Louise inquired, somehow fearing to know the answer.
"There was a slight uproar among the nobles due to Count Mott's outburst." Henrietta told her.
Louise start shaking from the fact that the other nobles are in an uproar, she then looks at Saito's armored figure with anger. Saito merely shrugs her angry stare at him. Henrietta then notices Louise's reaction and quickly interrupts her thoughts.
"Don't worry, Louise. There was some commotion in the Court, but there will be no repercussion." Henrietta told her.
"Thank you, Princess." Louise bowed to the Princess. Henrietta nodded before she continued her conversation with the Spartan.
"Did you forget? I promised you that I will come to your rescue when you're in trouble." Henrietta reminded her. "And I am the Queen now."
"Princess…" Louise muttered before bowing. "I don't know how much I can thank you."
Henrietta smiled from the sight before commenting about Louise's summoned familiar.
"You summoned great familiar, Louise."
"You're too kind. He is a very strong person though he can be stubborn sometimes."
"Why thank you." Saito thought.
Henrietta then motioned for Louise to stand up who then obliged before facing the Spartan again.
"Is Spartan your real name, honorable familiar?" Henrietta inquired.
"Spartan is the designation for the classification as a soldier in the military organization I belong to." Saito dutifully answered before he stated his name.
"I am Saito, Sergeant Major Saito-B214 of the UNSC Army." He saluted crisply.
The strange name of the Spartan intrigues her but nearly everything about him intrigues her. She didn't understand the ranking which is understandable but when she heard 'UNSC Army' part, it catches her attention.
"You said you're from an Army. What is this UNSC you belong to?"
"It is the acronym for the United Nations Space Command, my world's military organization." Saito answered but kept the rest of the details on hold. "I won't disclose anything else for now, Princess Henrietta."
"I understand, Saito." Henrietta nodded. "But could you tell me why you rescued the maid from the Count even knowing the risk of such act?"
Saito then collected his thoughts about his reason and purpose in saving Siesta. She is his first friend in this world.
"Miss Siesta is the first person I befriended and the first who showed kind heart to me before me and Miss Louise became better acquaintance due to her… mindset." Louise eyed him angrily and mumbled something silently. "You did the same thing, Princess Henrietta in regards to Miss Louise. We both wished to protect those close to us and that is the reason I saved Miss Siesta from the count."
Henrietta felt some warmth from Saito's explanation. It is true she intervened with the commotion at the Court because she wished to protect her best friend, Louise. She then nodded as she accepted his explanation.
"I understand, Saito. It is an honor to speak with you." She bowed to Louise that Saito returned with a slight bow before facing Louise again and clasping her hands together. "We have so much to talk about."
Henrietta and Louise talk with each other by the coffee table placed at the center of Louise's room as Saito takes his position by the hay pile then sits down and check his weapons. Henrietta takes notice of them and occasionally asks questions about them later. Saito answers her questions as best as he can in order for her to substantially understand them. But Saito denies her answers when it concerns some intricate details.
It is a good thing he kept the Covenant weapons hidden and only allowed Henrietta to see his current UNSC weapons.
Henrietta is quite surprised about Saito's weapons' capabilities. They are all capable of firing continuously without reloading with every shot. She never heard such weapons that she even asked if Saito got it from the elves in the Sahara. This confused Saito and told her that it is standard weaponry for the UNSC.
Even though Henrietta knows little about guns like the muskets but she knows all too well that a rapid-fire weapon can revolutionize warfare. She didn't dwells on the idea any further as she resumes her friendly chat with her best friend, Louise.
Henrietta then stands up from her seat as Louise follows suite. Henrietta then expresses her thanks to Louise.
"Thank you for sparing some time for me, Louise." Henrietta embraced her. "It has been nice talking to you."
"It's not a problem, Princess." Louise lightly blushed as she lowered her head a little. Henrietta then broke off the embrace.
"Good luck on tomorrow's exhibition, Louise." Henrietta smiled. "I'm excited to watch your familiar, Saito, perform tomorrow."
"N-no problem." Louise then summoned some confidence. "I am sure Saito will dominate the exhibition tomorrow."
"That's good to hear." Henrietta then faced Saito's position. Saito quickly stood up to meet her gaze. Henrietta faced her reflection at Saito's gold visor. "Can I see the face of my friend's noble familiar, Saito?"
Saito depolarizes his visor and allows Henrietta to see his face. The disappearance of the visor's golden color surprises Henrietta a bit before focusing to the face of a young man. She actually expects someone older but here she sees a young man nearly her age. Saito's eyes catches her attention, she can see sorrow and anger behind his cool and happy gaze.
She contemplates on what did Saito experienced before becoming Louise's familiar but sets those thoughts aside.
"I am looking forward to your performance tomorrow, Saito." Henrietta beamed a smile to him. Saito smiled a bit before replying.
"I'll do my best, Princess." Saito nodded before returning the golden color of his visor. Henrietta then faced Louise.
"I'll be taking my leave. I need to return quickly before someone notices my absence." Henrietta placed her hood over her head as she walked towards the door. "Good night, Louise. Good night, Saito."
Louise and Saito nodded in reply. Louise then walked towards to lock it after Henrietta exited the room. After locking the door, Louise faced Saito and asked him of his plans for the exhibition. Saito silently sighed before replying.
"All right, I'll do it but I need you to set some things for me."
Louise crossed her arms before replying.
"Let hear them."
It is the day of the Familiar Exhibition every student is showing off their own familiar's talents or skills to the other students, academy staffs and their special audience, Princess Henrietta. All of the male students are showing their best performance in some effort to capture the Princess's attention.
The blonde chubby boy, Malicorne, showed off his owl familiar, Cubarcil, with flying tricks. A blonde girl with drill-like hair, Montmorency, then performed with her frog familiar, Robin, in a musical performance as her familiar danced. Guiche and Verdandi only poised on stage over a pile of rose petals which didn't really caught the audience's attention. Next is Kirche whose salamander familiar, Flame, performed a vortex flamethrower.
After everyone else's performance, the audience is now anticipating the last two contenders, Tabitha's and Louise's respective familiars, who no doubt will dominate the Familiar Exhibition. Though most anticipate Tabitha's dragon familiar to dominate as not every knew about the duel between Guiche and the armored Saito.
Tabitha takes a ride on the back of her dragon familiar, Sylphid. The blue dragon then performs a series of flying tricks that dazzle the audience including Princess Henrietta.
After Tabitha's performance Louise is called up to the stage. Louise then walked up to the stage and followed by the armored figure of Saito.
As Saito marched beside Louise, his heavy metal steps can be heard by those nearby. Added with Saito's tall armored faceless appearance, it radiated intimidation to those weak-hearted nearby. After they reached the center stage, Louise then introduced Saito and very confident.
"I'm Louise Francoise Le Blanc de La Valliere and this is my familiar." She gestured to the armored figure of Saito beside her. "Saito, the Spartan!"
Murmurs of questions can then be heard from the audience just as Louise continued her announcement.
"For this exhibition, he will be performing a series of stunts that will surely amaze you all." She then nodded at Saito's position. Saito then moved forward and made the signal.
At this, a group of volunteer students under the supervision and assistance of their professors formed up before the stage. Louise then left the stage to stay clear of the upcoming stunts. At a section of the courtyard, one large boulder is being formed.
At the center of the stage, Saito draws out Derflinger from the sheath strapped to his back and hoists it before him. He nodded at a group of students, numbering four line water-wind mages, who then launched a barrage of small icicles.
In Saito's mind, all of his senses accelerated as they act as one sense and allowed Saito to experience the condition called 'Spartan Time'. Everything around him slowed down as his body moved normal according to him.
He slices or deflects each of the icicles sent towards him at high speed. The barrage is enough to kill a large group of warriors in one barrage. This first act surprises everyone including the Henrietta, Cardinal Mazarin, the Royal Guards and the Mage Knights.
The Royal Guards watches him carefully but can't help to be amazed by the armored human familiar's sword skill. The Mage Knights watches him as well and keeps an eye on his movements though they can only see blur.
After the first act is done, Saito sheaths Derflinger who remained silent through the act and walks towards the boulder. None of the icicles, from different directions
The boulder is made of earth and is almost twice his size when he approached it. No human can ever move such boulder as only the orcs and golems have the strength to move such weight.
Saito kneels on one knees then places one hand under the boulder and the other hand over him. He then applies force from the underside of the boulder and transfers the some of the weight to his other hand as he raises the whole boulder over his head.
The whole process took less than three seconds before he faced the audience.
His second act, a show of strength, clearly impressed the audience. Louise at the back of the stage is grinning as she now knew that Saito is dominating the exhibition.
Kirche is now admiring Saito even more as he showed his strength and sword skill. Tabitha is watching him with interest in his skills and knows that he has more secrets hidden. The rest are watching him with awe as he holds the large earth boulder over his head.
After holding the boulder for less than thirty seconds, he throws the boulder up and towards behind him. He quickly jumps up and sends a powerful kick to the boulder. The force of kick effectively cracks the boulder and sends large portions of the boulder through the courtyard away from anyone.
The audience is very impressed with his strength and has very few words to say. Henrietta is clearly impressed with his skills and strength. Cardinal Mazarin is quite interested with the armored familiar's skills as well.
He then returns to the stage as Louise then walks beside him. Once they are at the center of the stage, the two of them bow before the audience. After bowing, the audience slowly gives them applause due to Saito's show of superhuman strength.
The two then leaves through the backstage. Once Louise and Saito are hidden from view, Louise gives a confident laugh as she knows that her familiar gave them a good show.
Saito's plans worked greatly and she is hoping to snatch the grand prize but even she knows that Tabitha's dragon familiar, Slyphid, is a serious contender due to the flying acts. But at least she can boast that the familiar she summoned is incredible to the others.
Saito remained silent after the acts. He only showed a portion of his skill but enough to impress everyone else. At least Louise won't be bugging him much after this.
The presentation of awards for the best familiar shown during the Familiar Exhibition is underway. Hopes are being prayed by the students who wished to win the exhibition but it is known that only two familiars are going to really compete for the grand prize.
Henrietta and the judges can't really choose between the two and have a deliberate discussion. After a few minutes, they have decided to award the grand prize to Tabitha's dragon familiar due to the fact that flying is more useful than superior strength.
Other side of the Academy
Fouquet is currently at the other side of the academy and out of anyone's sight. She had gathered particular information about the weakness of the Treasure Vault. She got the information last night from Professor Colbert by using his obvious crush on her as Miss Longueville. The weakness turned out to be physical force which is much to her surprise as the vault is completely impervious to any kind of magic as the place is enchanted by a powerful square mage.
She summons a large earth golem from the ground as she perches on its right shoulder. After summoning the golem, she quickly orders it to punch one point where the Treasure Vault is.
The punch only manages to make a crack on the tower wall.
"This isn't going to be easy." Fouquet muttered silently before ordering the golem to punch the wall section again.
Tabitha and Slyphid are the first to be called to the stage. Henrietta crowned Tabitha who knelt down before her with the small decorated gold crown which is the royal gift.
"Nooo! Why didn't my Verdandi won?" Guiche shockingly asked. "Our elegance should have won the exhibition."
"Well it is not really surprising for Tabitha's familiar to win." Kirche first said. "The dragon did performed great flying skills. But Saito came close as his strength and skills are unmatched."
Montmorency, seating beside Guiche on the other side, nodded at Kirche explanation. She didn't really expect to win but at least she didn't make herself look bad. Guiche merely looked down as he still can't believe he and his familiar didn't win.
"You have a wonderful familiar spirit." Henrietta congratulated Tabitha who is kneeling on one knee before her. "If you would, will you let me see it fly again?"
Tabitha silently nodded.
Louise is currently leaving the site, followed by Saito beside her, as she expected to win. But she had to admit that the performance of Tabitha's dragon is quite amazing. She then sighed at the lost but at least she made herself look great before everyone.
"I should have won that award." Louise sighed heavily.
Saito remained silent as he had nothing to say. He merely followed Louise out of the main courtyard.
As they near the other courtyard, the alarm at Saito's HUD is triggered as a red diamond appeared at his HUD indicating its position. He then blocked Louise's path with his left arm.
Louise is about to protest when Saito gestured her to shut up before pulling behind a pillar. Much to her confusion, Louise decided to ask what's happening.
"Saito… What are you doing..?" She asked quietly. She knew that Saito won't act unless he had reason.
"Someone is on this courtyard." He gestured his index finger to the direction of the said courtyard.
Louise peeks through the other side and see a large golem standing before the tower.
"G-golem?" She said in surprise.
Saito peeks out from the other side and found the large golem. Saito then takes out his MA5C assault rifle as he is inquire information from Louise.
"Louise, isn't a golem summoned by an earth mage?" He waited for a reply. "Louise?" He then heard Louise's voice casting a spell from the courtyard. Alarms in his head then blared in danger.
"You idiot!" He mentally cursed.
He then rolls out of the pillar and founds Louise finishing her cast.
"Fireball!" She shouted after finishing the cast. No fireball emerged from her wand but rather some explosion bounced on the head of the golem and hit the wall. This attracted the golem as it turned to face Louise.
"RUN!" Saito shouted as he fired a few bursts from his MA5C to attract its attention.
Louise didn't listen as she tries casting another spell.
"You're out of luck!" A female shouted as the golem reached out to her.
"Damn you!" Saito sprinted towards Louise and gently grabbed her by the waist. Saito moved too fast that the golem didn't reach them and only hit the ground. Saito then dropped her by the stone hallway where the pillar is.
"Stay here. I'll handle this." Saito sternly ordered.
"No! I won't I will use my magic to destroy that golem!"
"You spell didn't even left a dent!" Saito replied with irritation. "So stay here!" He then sprinted off as he fired a few shots at the golem trying to find the earth mage. All of his shot only hit golem as bits of earth are chipped off by the rounds.
A bit earlier
Tabitha is riding over Slyphid as her familiar hovers off the ground and the audience including Henrietta watches them fly off the ground.
They then heard gunshot which is followed by a strong ground shake. This alarmed everyone including Tabitha who then ordered Slyphid to fly to the source.
The blue dragon then flies around the main tower until they reach the other side where a large golem is being hit by gunfire. Tabitha looks down and found the armored familiar, Saito, firing his large weapon at a rapid pace.
Fouquet is currently hiding behind the golem's head as gunfire flies around her.
"What kind of a gun is that?" She mentally cursed. "I feel like I'm being shot at by a platoon of musketeers."
As she hides behind the golem, she notices a large crack and burn on a section of the wall where the Treasure Vault is. She deduces it to be from the pink haired girl who casted a spell earlier. She then orders her golem to punch the fractured wall.
The golem then faces the wall as it pulls back its right arm before punching the wall and penetrates it. She then mutters a short earth spell that sends small medium sized rocks from the golem and sends it towards the armored familiar.
Saito and Louise notice rocks and quickly start moving around. Louise quickly hides herself behind a pillar as Saito runs around the courtyard as he evades the earth rocks sent towards him. Unknown to him, the earth rocks serve as a distraction for Fouquet as she quickly runs towards the Treasure Vault over the golem's right arm.
Fouquet then emerges from the vault later with a large box and quickly takes her position over her golem's right shoulder. She then makes an announcement towards Louise.
"Thank you so much!"
The earth rocks starts hitting the ground as Saito evades them. The golem starts walking over the academy's wall and escape.
In the air, Tabitha didn't intervene as she won't be able to stop a golem that size.
Headmaster Osmond is reading the message written on the wall that said that Fouquet has the Staff of Destruction and thanking them for the support.
An academy guard then approaches him and reports to that they can't find the said thief and only found a large pile of dirt.
Headmaster Osmond could not believe this is happening and never thought that anyone could break into the Treasure Vault.
Every student is at the main courtyard as the academy guards sweep the whole academy. At one side, Kirche, Tabitha and Tabitha's familiar, Slyphid are idling and talking about the incident.
"It's surprising to know that Fouquet was here." Kirche remarked with her back against the wall. "Hey Tabitha, did you see her face?"
Tabitha is sitting on the ground and reading as usual. She answers Kirche's question without looking up from her book.
"Her face is hidden." Tabitha replied uninterestedly.
At another place on the courtyard, Louise and Saito are standing at some distance from the rest of the students.
"In order to summon a large golem." Louise deliberated with her arms crossed. "That mage should be at least a triangular mage to do it."
"If you know that much, why didn't you stayed clear?" Saito said with irritation.
Louise glared at Saito before smugly looking away from him.
Henrietta along with her royal guards and Cardinal Mazarin runs towards her and looks worried.
"I'm glad you both safe." Henrietta said to them.
"You're Highness." Louise bowed. "I'm very sorry for letting the treasure get away."
Henrietta quickly kneels down to her before replying.
"It isn't your responsibility, Louise Francoise."
"But, you're Highness…"
Cardinal Mazaron then urges Princess Henrietta to hurry as they need to return to the palace. Henrietta then faces him and nods in reply before facing Louise again.
"I must report this incident to the royal palace. Please be safe Louise…" She then faced Saito. "You too, Saito."
Henrietta then leaves the academy on her carriage along with Cardinal Mazarin's carriage and the security convoy.
As they convoy leaves the academy, Louise can't help but worry about that her friend that she may take responsibility of the incident. She decides to keep her thoughts to herself. She doesn't want Saito to antagonize her again.
Well I'll end the chapter here. Hope you guys liked the story. Next will be my first favorite episode of the first season's series. I already got the perfect candidate for the Staff of Destruction.
I've been cooking some ideas on what else to do with the story. I'm also having a very special surprise for you all.
See you soon.