Castlevania: Nocturne of Ruin
This story contains spoilers for the Good Ending of Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin, and possibly also for Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. If you haven't at least completed Portrait of Ruin, do not read this fic. If you haven't played or watched them though, I would recommend that you do so immediately because they're both great.
Hello readers. After my Zelda fic crashed and burned a few years ago, I've been little more than a ghost drifting through others' stories and occasionally leaving reviews. So, yeah, I've more or less been a lurker. However I've found that I was able to fix some stuff up, drop a bunch of things and now I may be able to rewrite my Zelda story, using salvaged parts of the original and putting them onto something better. This…is not that story.
Now, everyone read this carefully, 'cause it's unlikely that I'm gonna say this again: I do not own Castlevania, its characters, or any of its content. They are property of Konami.
On average, I'm guessing that chapters will be about 2500-5000 words in length.
Also, I feel compelled to warn you that I may end up not finishing this story, although I really hope I do finish it. Here's hoping (and hopping) that I retain the motivation required to complete this fic. Anyway, I'll stop wasting your time: On with the story:
- Castlevania: Nocturne of Ruin -
A Request from an Order
It was a hot, sunny summer's afternoon, much like all the other days that week. At a small playground in Ithaca, New York, a young man was lounging sluggishly across one of the park benches. He had blond hair and blue eyes; his face was a picture of perfect contentedness. He was wearing a sleeveless blue shirt, black cargo pants, and a pair of white running shoes. His white coat lay discarded on the grass beside the bench.
Truthfully, it was actually a modified lab coat that he had used for chemistry class a year ago when he was still in grade thirteen, but he didn't really have anything better seeing as his favourite red jacket was far too hot for this weather. He had fixed the former lab coat up himself with the help of his best friend, making the sleeves narrower so that it would fit more snugly, and sewing in a thin, red lining just for fashion's sake.
The friend who had helped him with this project was sitting close by, rocking back and forth on a swing, her long chocolaty locks flowing out behind her. She was also wearing a sleeveless white top due to the heat and below that, a powder blue knee length skirt and matching sandals that wove around her ankles. Even as she swung, she kept a heavy looking book tucked beneath her arm. She came to a halt shortly and hopped off, going over to the boy and lightly poking him in the forehead.
"So, how do you like it here?
"It's too hot and this bench is uncomfortable," he moaned.
The girl huffed.
"You know that's not what I mean Jonathan! How do you like Cornell?"
"C'mon, Charlotte," Jonathan whined sitting up, "I'm just kidding. But I do like it here. It's nice to have a genius like you as a roommate. Although why the Lecarde sisters are here with us is beyond me."
Charlotte sat down on the bench next to him and opened up her book in her lap, "They may have been vampires for a few years, but they're still our age, it's only natural that they'd want to try and find something to study to start a career. Besides, if it hadn't been for their money, we'd be living in smelly dorms instead of the nice two-story house we've got."
It was true: Stella and Loretta had given them money for a house big enough for six people on the condition that Charlotte helped them get into Cornell University. It was an offer they couldn't refuse.
It had been three years since the two of them had defeated the vampire Brauner, Death, and his master Dracula, purifying Brauner's 'daughters' in the process. In truth, the sisters Stella and Loretta were the daughters of a friend of Jonathan's father; a man by the name of Eric Lecarde. He had appeared as a ghost inside the Castle of Darkness, and after learning his true identity, he requested that they try to save his daughters. Brauner had been an artist who had lost his daughters during the First World War, and had become a vampire shortly after the tragedy. He had deluded himself into believing that the Lecarde sisters were the reincarnations of his daughters, and to make sure they cooperated in his fantasy, he had turned them into vampires as well. Charlotte and Jonathan had come to the castle a few months afterwards, and upon learning the Sanctuary spell, they had, with some difficulty, purified the vampire sisters.
Charlotte gasped suddenly as she saw something on the pages of her book; "It says here that Baron Leon Belmont gave up his title, sword and status to rescue his fiancée Sara Trantoul. Isn't that romantic?"
"Belmont?" asked Jonathan. "Is that why you took the course on Romanian folklore? To read more vampire hunter stories?"
"Well, wouldn't you like to know more about the Belmont family?"
"Not really seeing as their whip is going to kill me someday…"
"That's hardly their fault! It's a side effect of a non-Belmont using the whip. Besides, if you don't use it too much, it won't affect you," Charlotte glanced at her wristwatch and stood up, tucking the book back underneath her arm, "I've got to go, I promised Maria that I'd meet her at the library today. I'll probably look up some of the vampire 'myths' about the Belmont family while I'm there. I want to know what exactly happened to Sara and Leon."
"Then I'll be going back to the house. I'll see ya later.
Charlotte invited Maria back to the house that evening. She was carrying a new book.
"So Mariabella," said Stella, getting her attention, "I was just telling Loretta about how weird Tristan acted on our date."
"Please Stella, its just Maria. But what was he like?" Maria asked, eager to hear the latest gossip.
Maria's whole name was Mariabella Fox, but she preferred the shortened version much more. She was a pretty girl with long blonde hair who always wore at least one article of either pink or green clothing every day. She also tended to a family of doves. The parents had died off when she was a girl and she cared for the chicks ever since.
"Let me guess," Jonathan said as he hunted through the cabinets for the hot chocolate mix, "He couldn't talk about anything except Amazonian wildlife?"
"Exactly!" exclaimed Stella, "Everything was 'scarlet macaws this' and 'tapirs that!' He just wouldn't talk about anything else! I can't remember how many times I tried to change the subject, but he kept finding ways of dragging me back to the goddamn jungle! How did you know, Jonathan?"
"I tried doing a history project with him once. Guess how much he knew about Celtic mythology?"
"Less than nothing?" Stella guessed.
"He's never even heard of King Arthur. I mean how has he never heard those stories! Everyone has!"
"Well, he does know more about the Amazon than anyone else here—" Charlotte tried coming to the absent Tristan's defense but was quickly cut off by Jonathan:
"Yep, more than anyone wants to know."
"Whatever, I'm sure he'll be a fantastic biologist or zoologist someday."
"We know," agreed Stella ruefully, "and if anyone gets in his way, he can just bore them to death. It's a real shame that such a cute looking guy could be so mind numbingly dull."
"That is just so…odd," said Maria.
They talked for hours. Maria eventually went home and the four residents went about their business. Midnight was approaching when a knock at the door was heard. Everyone went tense.
"Do you hear someone knocking?" asked Loretta worriedly.
"I'll check it out," Jonathan asserted.
"Then I'll come with you," Charlotte demanded, preparing to cast Ice Needles.
Jonathan ran upstairs to fetch one of his smaller weapons. The knocking continued.
Jonathan opened up the door, gripping his combat knife behind his back. Outside stood a boy with a strange symbol shaped like a thin sword on his cloak.
"Who are you, and what are you doing knocking on our door in the middle of the night?" Jonathan demanded.
The boy spoke up in an unexpectedly strong voice, if not somewhat out of breath, "My… name is Oliver. I'm here…to ask for your help. You see—"
The boy was interrupted as something big crashed to the ground in the middle of the road.
"Oh no! They've found me!" he shouted, "Hide!"
"I don't think so. We can handle this," Jonathan said confidently. A huge ball of fire collided with the front porch at that moment, utterly destroying it and sending Oliver diving for cover. Jonathan got his first good look at the monster that had attacked them. It looked like one of the dragon zombies that he and Charlotte had fought in the catacombs of Castlevania three years ago. This would be easy enough.
"Charlotte, get up close and get those Ice Needles ready!"
"Gotcha!" Charlotte ran up and started chanting.
The dragon seemed to respond as well. To Jonathan's dismay, it actually lifted off the ground, each beat of its wings sending gale force winds blowing at the pair of vampire hunters making them fight to keep their balance and interrupting Charlotte's casting. The area around the zombie's mouth illuminated as it prepared to loose another volley of fire. Jonathan jumped into the air and stabbed the dragon in the gut. Blood erupted around the wound. The monster roared, releasing its fire breath early, illuminating its pitch-black skin. And that was when Jonathan noticed something wrong: No smell of decay; Black-skin; Blood; this was no zombie. It was a living breathing black dragon!
"Charlotte! Run inside and get me a bigger weapon! This thing is alive!"
"Then there's no way, I'm leaving you out here alone! Cover me!" she started chanting again.
The dragon sucked in a breath and sent a flaming salvo flying at the two hunters. Jonathan did his best to take any attacks that would have hit Charlotte, hoping to God that she was almost ready. He got his wish with a cry of "Ice Needles!" as five giant lances of pure ice spun around and shot themselves at the dragon's throat. The monster howled in agony as the spears embedded themselves one after another in its neck. It tried to shoot another fire blast at them but only steam came from its mouth. Another hoarse cry later, and it tumbled from the sky, landing in the street with a resounding crash. It desperately tried to pick itself up off the ground, but Stella dashed out of the house holding her rapier, leapt onto its head and drove the blade through its skull. The dragon tried to roar; a hollow and pathetic sound, and moments later it burst into flames, slowly disintegrating until the only evidence that it had ever been there was the immense pile of ash laying in the middle of the road.
"Well done," said a cold voice. Jonathan felt a chill run down his spine and seconds later a woman seemed to materialize out of the shadows across the street.
"Who are you?" Charlotte demanded.
"What is wrong with you?" Stella shouted furiously, "Look at what you've done to our—" she choked. As the woman stepped out into the light of the streetlamp, they noticed that the woman had a rather disturbing skin tone. Either the three of them were all having the same hallucination at once, or the newcomer's body was purple. She was wearing a heavy set of red robes and held a scythe unsettlingly reminiscent of the one Death carried. "For now you may call me Camilla. However, I don't think you'll need to for very long. You won't survive long enough to get in our way. You'll be taken care of soon enough."
"Who are you working for?" Jonathan asked.
"I don't feel as though I'm under any sort of obligation to tell you that, human." She grinned savagely, for a moment revealing a set of razor sharp fangs before she melted back into the shadows.
"Get inside and lock all the doors! Make sure the windows are closed also!" ordered Jonathan. He pointed at Oliver who was crouching behind a bush, "You. Inside. Now. You're going to tell us exactly what's going on here."
Oliver nodded and ran inside the house.
After the house had been completely secured, they all sat down at the kitchen table staring at Oliver expectantly.
"So, why did you come find us?" asked Charlotte.
"I came here to ask for your help," Oliver responded quickly, "You see, there's another vampire problem. We know that you just destroyed Brauner as well as Dracula three years ago, but there's a new threat: Have you heard of the vampire Walter Bernhard?"
Stella and Loretta shook their heads while Jonathan simply looked clueless. Charlotte on the other hand suddenly lit up like a lightbulb. She pulled out the new book she had brought home from the library;
"I know about him. He's the one who kidnapped Sara Trantoul right? Back in the Eleventh Century?"
"Among other things," Oliver confirmed.
"Wait, are you telling me that Leon doesn't finish him off?" asked Charlotte.
"Oh no, don't worry; Walter's dead and shouldn't be coming back. The problem is that he has a grandson, and ever since Dracula came to power, the Bernhard Clan has been trying to reclaim the castle that they feel Dracula stole from them. Although Walter's daughter was killed centuries ago, his grandson Alastor Bernhard has had centuries to plot the return of his clan. And he's managed to summon Castlevania for himself without using the power of Dracula. All thanks to his accomplice who you saw just a minute ago."
"Yeah, about her. Who was she anyway?" asked Jonathan. Charlotte glared at her new book. She muttered something that Jonathan could just barely hear, only catching the words "…spoiling the ending…"
"Charlotte, this may come as a bit of a shock. You're family has ties to the Fernandez family if I'm not mistaken.
"Yes…" Charlotte answered uneasily looking back up from the book. Jonathan seemed to be growing restless.
"The woman is Camilla Fernandez. She used to be a vampire hunter, but was transformed into a vampire herself. She was killed centuries ago, but Alastor brought her back, and what's worse, she gained some incredible powers when she was resurrected. She has the powers of a regular Devil Forgemaster, except that instead of being limited to summoning undead and hellspawn, she also has the power to bring things back to life. Like that dragon you fought a few minutes ago."
"Well, that's kind of unsettling," Charlotte seemed to pale slightly and her voice shook, an obviously fake and nervous smile playing at her lips.
"Wait a second," Jonathan interrupted, "Are you telling us that that vampire we saw a minute ago was, like, Charlotte's great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, aunt or something?"
"Uh, well, something along those lines."
Chralotte's face lost several shades of color in seconds. She shuddered feverishly.
"Correct me if I'm wrong," Loretta asked, "But what you're trying to say is that even though Bernhard is the mastermind here, Camilla's the one we've got to be looking out for?"
"More or less."
"And where's the castle this time?" Charlotte asked.
"It's appeared about ten miles from a rural town in Pennsylvania."
"That sounds strangely appropriate," chuckled Jonathan, "So, who exactly sent you anyway?"
"I'm not supposed to tell anyone seeing as we aren't even supposed to exist anymore, but you guys did save my life. I don't actually have a last name, but I'm with the Order of Ecclesia. The symbol on my cloak is a glyph."
"I knew it!" Charlotte snapped her fingers, "That's the Confodere Glyph! And that would mean that you're—"
"Yes. I'm Oliver, of the house of Shanoa."
They took a moment to let the information sink in.
"Soooooooo," said Jonathan conversationally, "Who's got any ideas in regards to explaining to the neighbors what the hell happened twenty minutes ago?"
There was a short awkward silence.
"Neo-Nazis?" Stella suggested uncertainly.
Only the boys laughed. The other two girls groaned.
"Yeah, didn't really think that'd work either."
"Let's go with a gas leak and leave it at that before people get suspicious."
The clock struck midnight.
Unbeknownst to anyone, a stone coffin lay inside a cave on the grounds of Castlevania. There was a grating noise as stone dragged against stone and slowly, the lid of the coffin was pushed aside. Inside, a man with pale skin and platinum blond hair sat up. He was dressed in dark clothes with gold trim. He sighed, twin pools of amber opening lethargically; the only sign that he had been asleep at all.
"I cannot feel any trace of my father's powers having been active recently… Why have I awoken this time?"
Author's Note: So, what does everyone think? Who recognizes Mariabella? I'll be disappointed if you can't at least tell who the 'mystery' character at the end of the chapter is. Anyway, Oliver was originally going to be the name of the Bernhard vampire, but I didn't want to make people think of an adorable orphan boy whenever I wrote his name. He works much better as Shanoa's descendant. Still, he's not really going to be doing much other than replacing Vincent with a less…pathetic…character. He's really not going to show up very often either… I apologize if anyone is now hoping for an appearance from Shanoa. She's been dead for three hundred years and I'm not bringing her back. Oh well…at least you fans of Symphony of the Night have something to look forward to. I hope to hear your thoughts on this chapter soon.
Fun Fact: Jonathan Morris actually lives in Texas! It's true! While it doesn't explicitly say that Jonathan himself lives in Texas anywhere in the Castlevanian mythos, Quincy Morris from Bram Stoker's Dracula (who is of course Jonathan Morris's grandfather) is said to have been Texan. So, assuming that the family hasn't changed their main habitation for seventy-or-so years, Jonathan Morris can be assumed to be from Texas. By extension, that also means that Charlotte is also from Texas. Who knew! Well, me actually. The reason I had them living in Ithaca is because…Heck, I'm Canadian, so I'm not really one to judge, but first of all, I figured that since Cornell is a relatively high ranking university, it only makes sense that Charlotte would get in, and also because…well, I just like Ithaca. Lots of river canyons, waterfalls, and its 'close' proximity to both the Finger Lakes and to a lesser extent the Great Lakes; it's just very nice, not to mention that Cornell's main campus and the surrounding community (dorms, student residences, fraternities, and whatnot) take up a large portion of the main city. It's pretty much the ideal real-world city for a video game character to live in. Plus, it shares the name of another Castlevania character, so it's really the ideal school for these guys.