"Sabitsuita kokoro, otomonai sekai, nani o miteruno?"
With two hearts rusting together, in a world without sound; what do you see?
The happily-singing Sister was a real nun belonging to the Church of England. Her family was renowned throughout the Anglican Community for its devotion to God. Her father and grandfather were priests. Her elder stepsister was also a nun. Their youngest sister was training to be a nun. And her mother qualified as a saint for successfully managing her husband's proclivities during the fifteen years of their marriage instead of committing suicide as a desperate way to get the last word in an argument.
"Matane o ieru kao o sagasuyo sore o kurikaesu dake…"
I'm searching for the face who will say "see you again," I'll just be doing it over and over again.
If one ever thought to ask her what particular religious order she belonged to, the Sister would reply: "I'm with The Worker Sisters And Brothers of the Holy Spirit." And her name and image could be found on the publicly-accessible roster of the far-flung order, whose members were scattered throughout Australia, Canada, Haiti, and the United States.
"Nandome no kimochi darou, koko ni aru nukumori wa. Machigai demo kamawanai, soba ni iru koto."
No matter how many times you feel that way- there will always be warmth here. Even if it was a mistake, I don't care; I'll always be by your side.
Her true affiliation was a parish unlisted in any public records. And while she was personally pious, her order did not require its members to be religious -or even Anglican- to begin with.
In fact, the Sister could count on both hands the number of actual Anglicans in her order. Her entire clan counted.
The Archbishop was another. You didn't become the leader of one of the foremost Christian communities in the world if you didn't truly believe in what you preached. (Practicing what one preached, however, was another thing entirely.)
Likewise Maria Takayama, her classmate from Saint Chronica Convent, was a proper nun. And Stiyl was an ordained priest despite his age and bar-code tattoo and bling and totally obvious crush on the totally oblivious Maria (but that was okay since junior Anglican priests were allowed to marry.)
"Namida no oto, tameiki no iro ima, tashikameru genzaichi."
With the sound of tears and the looks of a sigh, I'm sure this is where we are now.
But the non-Anglicans outnumbered the true faithful by a massive margin. The Sister worked alongside the runaway 'pope' of a Japanese Kirishitan sect that had fused together Buddhist, Catholic, and Shinto tenets to create its unique –and heretical– take on Christianity, an exotic-looking Puritan sculptor who used Jewish golems in battle, a backstabbing Japanese diviner with a sister complex, and a princess-haired Shinto shrine maiden whose blood supposedly possessed the power to attract and kill otherwise invincible vampires… because she was technically a vampire herself, the last vampire, the princess who had exterminated her own kind, Shrovetide the Last Dark, the miko of the Compact of Blood.
"Joudan mitai na mainichi mitai, mitai, mirai…"
A jestful everyday life; I want to see it. I want to see it, that future.
And all was right in the world. For the mission of Necessarius, the Church of Necessary Evil, the 0th Parish of the Anglican Church, was the neutralization and destruction of magic in England by investigating, arresting, and punishing magicians. And it accomplished its mission by sending forth sanctioned magicians of its own to level the battlefield against the heretics.
Fight fire with fire, magic with magic. To defeat the Devil, the faithful needed to channel Sin itself.
So while the Sister could perform all the duties expected of a nun, she was also doctrinally and spiritually cleared for acts that no run-of-the-mill clergy would ever condone, acts like lying, thaumaturgy, torture, and murder.
Nothing less could be expected out of a girl who underwent brutal training to become an Executor, a first-rate killer, a weapon forged to defend mankind from the dark arts. And far heavier was the burden on her pretty shoulders because of her blood-soaked bloodline.
Her father was an active Executor and a living legend. Accorded the honor of serving as an official trainee at the age of ten, he had been training even before then. He entered the fullness of his rank during his twenty-second year. At the same time he entered the seminary, cementing his dedication to the Church. The demons he had destroyed were legion. So were the heretics and the magicians who had died by his hands and upon his blades.
The Sister would never exceed his gory record. She did not wish to. Sickened by all he had done In Nomine Dei, "in the name of God," she utterly rejected his path of darkness. For her father was evil incarnate, who could only achieve lasting happiness through inflicting misery and death upon his fellow man.
Yet she loved him despite his faults. She could always convert into a new faith, move far away, and even make friends. But she only had one father. And while he was evil, he was not a villain. He was a deviant, yes, but he wasn't inhuman. Neither sane nor insane, he was simply unable to help what he was. And she would gladly give up her life for him even though he would hold her in contempt for her selfless sacrifice.
So the Sister had subtly held back during her training to indefinitely delay her elevation to full Executor. And she intended to firmly decline the promotion if ever her superiors cut to the chase and directly offered to promote her.
Her unwanted destiny remained a distant disquiet for now. She currently concerned herself with the wheelchair-ridden boy she'd crossed paths with earlier, a secondary target who was quickly exceeding her initial threat estimate.
Who are you?
"Demon Cannon Girl-"
"-Magical Girl Lyrical Mami ~Aces of A's~ goes on..."
The Many Lives of Mami Tomoe
Demon Cannon Girl
"Not three guest appearances in this fan fic," muttered the disgruntled Haruhi as the disclaimer section finally arrived, "And I'm already wondering why I even bother to dress up."
She was complaining about her newest cosplay, the cool and collected Lumiere of Kiddy Grade, who was pretty much Haruhi's antithesis in terms of personality and a reminder that Aya Hirano was quite impressive during her early years as a seiyuu.
"For the art?" Airi suggested.
"There is that, I guess," Haruhi allowed. "Where is Sheo?"
"Darren-sama got distracted by his Muv-Luv fan fiction."
"He really should control his Attention Deficit Creator Disorder…"
"I agree. The disclaimer for this chapter will be handled by a special guest," Airi explained.
The unnamed Sister from the previous chapter smiled at the readers. "God bless you," she hailed while eyeing Haruhi out of the corner of her eye.
"What are you looking at?" grumbled the Author Apparent, who was not as oblivious as some might think.
"You changed your clothes?" the nun observed.
"It's fan service," Haruhi replied.
"That's a shame." The Sister flashed a fetching smile. "You were looking very Sayaka during the last chapter."
Her expectant tone made Haruhi shiver. "Just get on with the disclaimer already!" she scowled.
"Very well." The nun winked. "Rejoice, readers. Sheo Darren does not own Madoka, Nanoha, Haruhi, Queen's Blade, and the like. Read and review."
a certain anglican nun
One Year Ago:
The cathedral stood out against the modern skyline of the bustling city. Built during the frenzied Fifties to serve as a central base of operations from which the Anglican faith could spread across post-occupation Japan, it took inspiration from the Gothic and Perpendicular lines of the ancient Canterbury Cathedral in England.
Such a magnificent edifice required significant physical upkeep. Its caretakers did everything humanly possible –and some things patently impossible- to maintain the stately building. But only so much could be done with diminishing donations, a permanent staff of half a dozen persons, and a handful of volunteers. Each passing year saw more and more empty pews, the once-faithful departing for greener spiritual pastures.
Still, a positive atmosphere pervaded the church. Its caretakers were devout, true believers. They were also practical people who heeded not the slow deterioration of the outer façade so long as the foundation and supports remained intact and rock solid.
Most of all, they were a family. And more often than not, a family that prayed together did stay together.
This day held great import for the clan. They expected a guest of the highest standing, the most august personage to ever grace their church. So they donned their best clothes and game faces before assembling at the entrance of the main chapel.
The clan patriarch was a grandfatherly priest, the chief shepherd of the local Anglican flock. His broad stature and cleft chin cut an impressive figure; he gave off the impression of a veteran samurai from the Warring States era, a true soldier of god. He was actually older than he looked, and kept fit through the grace of God coupled with assiduous practice of Chinese martial arts.
His aide was also his only son, his successor in more ways than one. Tall and solemn, the junior priest had been fortuitously born during a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. He inherited his father's bushy eyebrows and mussed mullet, and was further blessed with a greater-than-average capacity for magic.
Unlike his father and the rest of his family, he was also evil to the bone. But he kept his urge to kick and shoot shaggy dogs under tight control. Else he would spend the next two weeks banished to the couch and deprived of his favorite mapo tofu.
His spouse was the second woman he had taken as his wife. One of those ladies who aged gracefully, the graying woman was the glue that held the clan together, the Platonic ideal of the woman behind the great man. She fully supported her father-in-law, managed her husband's darker urges through generous servings of mapo tofu and equally hot sessions in the bedroom, and defied the age-old trope of the wicked stepmother by doting upon her husband's seventeen-year old daughter from his first, tragic marriage just as much as she did with her own two children.
Her stepdaughter was the mirror image of her late biological mother. Her curly hair and pale skin lacked the least hint of color, and her pupils were an eerie hue of amber. While her personality was more in tune with that of her father, the girl satisfied herself with harmless teasing through psychoanalysis.
This being a formal occasion, she wore her nun's habit over her usual 'work' clothes. Gauze bandages peeped from within the sleeves of her uniform. The oft-replaced wrappers indicated the blood price she gladly paid to remain this close to her father.
Her younger stepsisters took after their mother. The elder redhead, age fourteen, was also a nun. Her sister was planning to follow in her steps. Neither girl showed any signs of acting the least bit like their father or stepsister, which relieved their mother (and their stepsister, too, though she would never admit it) to no end.
"Welcome to our humble home, Archbishop Laura," the head priest spoke on behalf of his assembled family.
"I am honored to be in your care, Father," replied the gorgeous woman in a white dress. Her blonde hair was so long that it trailed after her feet despite having been bunched up twice. She proffered the simple ring on her right hand, which received respectful kisses from each of the clan members.
The head priest turned to his guest's escort, a tall and lanky Irish priest who wore an ostentatious panoply of jewelry and a set of facial tattoos akin to a bar code. "Welcome, Brother Magnus," he greeted the bodyguard.
"Thank you, Father."
After the brief exchange of greetings, the head priest led the Archbishop, her escort, and his clan into the cathedral. The head priest and his spiritual liege chitchatted about family matters, the priest's ongoing research into one of the purported Holy Grails, and the Archbishop's extensive collection of bath tubs.
The younger nun sidled over to the Archbishop's escort. "Hey, Stiyl," she casually prompted.
"What is it, Ophelia?"
"Index has not experienced any notable issues during the past month," Stiyl finally responded.
The girl called 'Ophelia' raised an eyebrow. "What's with the sorcery name basis?" she pressed. "I know we're not close, but you're bosom buds with Maria and Kaori. Did something happen to your merry trio?"
"Index, Salvatore, and I have agreed to maintain our relationships on a professional level," Stiyl muttered.
At this point, Ophelia's stepsister joined in with the armor-piercing observation of "So you proposed to Takayama and she rejected you."
"Ooohhh," 'Ophelia' snickered. Aware of the element favored by the bodyguard, she punned, "Burned…"
Eventually the party settled in the head priest's study. The two nuns and the wife of the junior priests served refreshments while the girl child plopped herself on the lap of her amused grandfather. The old man fondly ruffled her short bob of red hair while talking with his superior.
"Shall we move on to business?" the Archbishop brought up after perhaps fifteen minutes of breaking the ice over tea and crumpets.
"Yes, Archbishop. Dearest heart," he requested his daughter-in-law, "Would you excuse us? Momo, can you go with your mother? This will be very boring for you."
"Okay, Grandpa," chimed his youngest grandchild.
The albino nun closed the door on the departing 'civilians.' She and her stepsister stood guard at either side of the entryway.
"This room is secure," the head priest confirmed.
"Excellent," the Archbishop said. "What do you know about the outsiders?"
The head priest drew upon his extensive experience and his ready access to the esoteric records of the Church. "They are humans from far, far away," he answered, "Heathens who worship a historical figure called the Saint King. They practice a different system of thaumaturgy through the aid of powerful artifacts. I hazard that they are the ones that Jesus called 'sheep that are not of this fold' in the Gospel of John."
The Archbishop inclined her head. "I have recently learned that a number of their artifacts arrived on our planet," she revealed.
The head priest sat straighter in his couch. He had spent much of his lifetime seeking out and studying the numerous Holy Grails scattered across the world. Over time his sphere of interest had expanded to include magical artifacts in general. He tried not to sound too acquisitive when asking, "Where did they land?"
"All around the world, but a good number ended up in Mitakihara City."
"That's right next door! How did I miss them?"
"It is not your fault, Father," assured the Archbishop. "The outsiders' sudden incursion caught all of us off guard. They have some sort of area effect spell, perhaps their equivalent of a grand spell, which blocks our scrying spells. And our presence and influence in this country has always been marginal."
Indeed the Land of the Rising Sun had never been fertile soil for Christianity. Missionaries often joked that the Japanese and Chinese came from the moon due to how their minds and hearts and souls were often unreceptive to the Word of God. The old priest knew that a good part of his congregation only converted for the weddings, which were cheaper than the Shinto equivalent while looking just as nice.
"Did we perchance obtain one of those artifacts?" he persisted.
"Unfortunately," his superior admitted, "By the time we became aware of the opportunity, the outsiders had already resolved the situation."
"That is a shame…"
"Yes, but it is no great loss to us. We will be able to acquire examples in good time. When we do, you will be one of the first to know and study them."
The Archbishop sounded so confident about the matter that the old priest was tempted to inquire as to her methods of acquiring an outsider artifact. "There is more to this, Archbishop?" he limited himself to asking.
"You are correct, Father. The information I will entrust to you is top secret."
"It will not leave this room," he promised.
The Archbishop paused for dramatic effect. "I attended a secret meeting with Pope Palpatine of the Roman Catholic Church, Patriarch Cyrile Raskova of Constantinople, and President Putina of the Russian Federation," she revealed. "We have agreed to share information about any outsider activity that occurs within our respective territories."
The Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Catholic Church, and the Anglican Communion were the three biggest Christian denominations in the world. While they all served the same boss, so to speak, they were also political rivals that competed for the hearts and souls of billions. And the Russian Federation was the only nation in the world that fielded 'unconventional operatives' who could match or even exceed the churches' sanctioned magicians.
Only a worldwide threat, one on the same level as the extinct Heretic Gods, could force the three contending churches and the paranoid, scientific Russians to share jealously-guarded intelligence.
"We require more information about the outsiders," the Archbishop continued. "Their local liaison resides in Mitakihara City. But we cannot approach them from a position of ignorance and weakness.
"You are the closest representative of the Anglican Church," she reminded the old priest. "Your devotion is exemplary and your experience unparalleled. That is why I have chosen to entrust this critical mission to you."
"I recommend my second granddaughter," he immediately replied.
His prompt response piqued the Archbishop's curiosity. "I expected your son," she mused.
"I would go myself. But a shepherd must first tend to his own flock. And my son-" The old priest glanced fondly at his junior while saying this. "-has been assuming more and more of my duties nowadays. Neither of us can leave the cathedral for extended periods of time. And my eldest granddaughter is not suited for this mission. She is an exorcist, not a combatant."
The albino nun acknowledged her grandfather's observation with a faint smile and a nod.
"My second granddaughter, however, is an Executor in all but name. She has even participated in multiple operations. She is ready," the old priest affirmed.
"I concur with your analysis," the Archbishop agreed. "We will send her."
The head priest beckoned to the younger nun, the one Stiyl called 'Ophelia.' "My dear, come here."
"Yes, Grandfather." Once at the side of the old priest, the young nun turned to the Archbishop. "What is my mission, Archbishop Laura?" she asked her liege.
"Your mission, should you choose to accept it," the Archbishop said, "Is to gather intelligence on the outsiders and their magic, philosophies, and society. If possible, you are also to acquire examples of their artifacts. Above all, you must conceal your presence and the involvement of our Church."
"I won't fail you, Archbishop Laura," the nun vowed.
"Then may the grace of God go with you, Sister."
The Present Time
Everything changes. People. Places. Perceptions. War. All are borne away upon the ever-shifting tides of the Sea of Time.
The Sister was not the same brash and cocky nun who arrived in Mitakihara City a year ago. She had witnessed events great and small, met and fought and befriended all sorts of people, and became privy to the greatest secret the world has never known.
By now her main mission was a matter of routine. Wait for the 'Barrier' exclusion spell cast by the outsider magician, Mami Tomoe, and her partner, Yuuno Scrya, before they set out. Recite invisibility chant. Make for the direction of the explosions. Try not to get hit again by a stray long-range Grand Spell.
Magical scrying was out of the question. Tomoe-san's artifact –'Device,' recalled the Sister, was the outsider term- outdid bloodhounds when it came to sniffing out magical emanations.
Instead, the nun took video recordings using a smart phone and e-mailed them to Maria. (Contrary to popular opinion, clergy and magicians were not backwater rubes, merely traditional. The Sister herself was a quick learner when it came to technology, though she did require Kamijou-kun's aid on some of the finer points of smart phones.)
"And that's the latest, Maria," the nun concluded her report over Skype chat. "Anything else you need?"
"(Yes. Please call me Index during missions, Ophelia,)" stated her blue-haired coworker.
"Wow... That's cold. No wonder Stiyl and Kaori are so depressed…"
"(Fortis, Salvare and I have agreed that we should maintain a professional relationship,)" droned Index.
"Funny, that's exactly what Stiyl said." The Sister paused. "I bet you've forgotten my name," she proposed.
Index seemed to take the slightest of offense at that suggestion. "(That is impossible. I possess a perfect photographic memory,)" she said more coolly than usual. "(I can perfectly recall any and all datum I have previously browsed.)"
"Is that so? Then what's my real name? Come on. Say my name," urged the other nun.
"(Very well, it is-)"
The status quo dramatically shifted a couple of nights ago with the abrupt appearance of new outsiders, magic knights whom the nun unimaginatively christened 'Red,' 'Pink,' 'Blue,' and 'Hand.' They had attacked the unsuspecting Tomoe-san and succeeded in bringing her down.
Those knights were close-combat types, she summarized. Their Walking Churches resemble the armor of the magic knights of the Holy Orders. They strengthen their existing defenses instead of raising new ones. Their artifacts use a separate power source to greatly enhance damage for a short while. Their range attacks serve to cover their advance as they close in on their foes.
It was all the Sister could do not to join the fray on behalf of Tomoe-san. She had grown fond of the good-natured girl after a year of close observation. But orders were orders.
Her decision to stay clear of the battle proved wise. That could have been her getting her… The nun guessed that the glowing ball of light wrenched out of Tomoe-san's torso was was related to how the outsiders practiced their magic, perhaps their equivalent of a Thaumaturgical Crest.
She did attempt to follow the retreating knights on the roundabout rationalization that they also counted as outsiders to be studied. They managed to give her the slip, though, by the simple expedient of flying faster than her top running/roof-hopping speed.
Imagine the nun's surprise when she practically walked right into Blue at a convenience store just a few minutes ago. Blue was even more surprised, as he was accompanying a wheelchair-ridden boy who could only be his master.
You truly work in mysterious ways, Oh Lord, the nun prayed.
Wheelchair is ridiculously powerful. I don't know how he escaped my notice or that of Tomoe-san for an entire year. Perhaps he had been hiding his powers until last night?
If so, what prompted him to send his underlings after Tomoe-san-san? She couldn't have discovered them since she seemed surprised to run into 'Red.'
Maybe I'm looking at this the wrong way. Tomoe-san didn't find them; they found her. She had been alone for a week. She sent Yuuno off somewhere. 'Wheels' probably thought she would be vulnerable.
But why did he take an entire week to strike? Scrya and his pals arrived just in time to save Tomoe-san.
Maybe Wheelchair erred out of caution. I'd be on my guard against a flying Saint class magician who spams Grand spells like they were Black Keys.
Or maybe Wheelchair is a rookie. He should have sensed my magic when we met just now. But he didn't react. And I don't think he's pretending to be ignorant. At least I hope he isn't. That means he bluffs better than Dad. And that's terrifying.
His companion isn't human. The guy felt like a familiar or a spirit, something fast and furious and furry. A dog, I think? No, she reevaluated, he's more like a wolf, a dire wolf who left the pack because he was too big and powerful and vicious to control.
So that makes one magician, one familiar, and three minor magicians at the very least.
As usual, the odds are against me.
The nun frowned at the half-eaten apple in her hand. While she was proud of her capabilities and sure of her skills, she was also a realist and a pragmatist. A single magician was a dangerous foe in the best of circumstances. What more one surrounded by his entire retinue?
And she still lacked her most powerful defensive spell. Her Walking Church had been dispelled entirely by accident. And the events of the preceding year kept her too busy to return home and renew her Walking Church's consecration.
Still, the loss served to remind her of the need to fight smarter. And fighting multiple outsider magicians in her handicapped state was so stupid that it counted as suicide, a mortal sin.
Caren-oneechan will never let me hear the end of it…
Prepare for the worst while praying for the best. The Sister had already prepared a number of plans and back-up plans that maximized her advantages and covered her weaknesses. A year of prowling Mitakihara gave her a good feel for the lay of the city. She inventoried her resources, mapped out routes and ambush points, and assigned targeting priority among her potential targets.
Worse comes to worse, she decided, I should go for the boy first. Anti-Magician Tactics 101: Cut off the head of the snake. Take the magician out of the picture, and his familiars go back to where they came from- or die of prana deprivation soon enough.
In the eye of her mind, the nun suddenly envisioned the boy slumped within his wheelchair, pinned to the back of his seat by the blade jutting from his chest.
The Sister halted in her tracks. Gone was the alluring taste of her snack's exposed white flesh. Her fingertips were bruising the red skin. With some effort she schooled herself into a calm state once more.
No. No killing. I'm not going to kill anyone. I'm not my Dad. I don't get kicks from seeing other people suffer, from making them suffer. I haven't killed anyone. I don't need to kill people.
Besides, the nun thought, the boy might not know about the fine print of the pact. He might have been tricked into entering a contract with these familiars. And if it was a Daemon… worse, if it was that Daemon…
"The destruction of Atlantis. The burning of Rome. The obliteration of Pompeii. The fall of Camelot. The Marie Celeste. The sinking of the Titanic. The explosion at Tunguska. The nuclear disasters of Chernobyl and Fukushima. The Chelyabinsk meteor. All these disasters were wrought by one particular Daemon."
The ancient priest swept his severe gaze across the gaggle of nuns-in-training present for his lecture.
"This most insidious of the Daemons often takes the form of a charming cat. It always targets girls like you." He pointed at an unnerved student. "And you." His finger moved to rebuke a second girl. "And you."
His final target was one of his two star pupils. She was not only unaffected by his intimidation, but also completely familiar with his topic.
"Describe its modus operandi," he prompted her.
She stood up. "This Daemon offers a wish to a victim," the girl answered. "If the victim enters into a contract with it, she gains infernal powers that ultimately debase her soul. When a victim has been completely corrupted, the Daemon sacrifices her in a black ritual which summons another Daemon called a Witch."
"And what is this Daemon Prince called?" the priest prodded the girl's seatmate and best friend.
"It goes by many names." The blue-haired trainee began reciting examples. "Legion. The White Devil. White Primate Murder. Incubator. Kyubey."
The priest returned the pressure of his attention to the first girl. "But what is its true name?" he rattled off.
She did not hesitate. She felt no fear; she feared no evil. Daemons could claim the unwary or the incomplete. But a true woman such as herself could flinch away its embrace for she was stalwart and girded her soul with the armor of contempt, a shield proof against blandishments.
"Satan the Deceiver."
He's innocent until proven guilty, the nun thought. An ounce of prevention equaled a pound of cure.
I'll capture him. Force him to break the contract with his familiars. Or make him sign a magical contract to stop using magic. Or beat him up until I kill his illusion about magic being the solution to everything.
Pleased at having arrived at a nonlethal solution to her main dilemma, she turned her intellect upon another problem that currently plagued her.
"It's so hot..."
Throwing back the hood of her habit unleashed her lengthy mane. She gathered that thick mass of russet hair and secured it into a ponytail using elastic.
"That's much better." The nun sighed in relief now that her head and neck felt cooler. "Now, where was that hospital where Kamijou-kun is recuperating? He's going to like these apples…"
It was the least she could do for the boy who continued to aid her despite constantly getting injured in the bargain. And she would need his aid and his power, a power that could recreate the miracles of God, if she was to succeed in her self-appointed mission of keeping Mitakihara peaceful.
With this firmly in mind, Sister Kyouko Kotomine went on her merry way to find and fuss over He Who Was Above God.
To Be Continued
Fan Wank Character's Notes
Kyouko flashed an ingenuous smile at the readers. "Did I surprise you?" she chuckled.
"Your identity was an open secret to anyone who watched your centric episodes in canon Madoka or bothered to look up the lyrics in Google," Haruhi muttered.
"I think they would be more interested in Kamijou-kun," Airi opined.
"Kamijou-kun was almost as obvious as her," interjected Haruhi. "Your 'master' is going to break his fan base if he's going to add A Certain Imagine Breaker Boy to this story."
"Only the surname of Kamijou has been confirmed as of now," Airi said. "He could still be Kyousuke Kamijou from Madoka."
"Sheo hates Kyousuke because of what happened to Sayaka," Haruhi reminded her. "And only That Boy merits a lofty translation of his surname."
"Their surnames are written the same. And this Kamijou-kun's power is specifically described to be the recreation of miracles, not the negation of miracles like That Boy," Airi pointed out.
"Gah, we're getting nowhere…" Haruhi turned on the Sister. "Hey, what is Kamijou's first name?" she demanded.
"I couldn't refer to Kamijou-kun by his first name," was the glib response. "That would be disrespectful of me."
"Stop playing coy!" Haruhi snapped. "Your stepsister is the troll, not you!"
"If you cosplay Sayaka in the disclaimer of the next chapter," offered the nun, her voice dripping with honey, "I'll grant your deep, dark desire, Suzumiya-san."
"Denied," Haruhi immediately refused. "I'm bisexual, but you're not my type!"
Airi looked thoughtful. "Give me an 'O'?" she asked.
Kyouko grinned at her fellow redhead. "There is one 'O'," she revealed.
"Don't turn this into a game of twenty questions!" Haruhi raged.
"It's Wheel of Fortune, not Twenty Questions," Airi said.
Kyouko shrugged before getting back to business. "This is the last chapter of Demon Cannon Girl that Sheo will post as part of The Many Lives of Mami Tomoe," she announced. "The rest of DCG will be posted in a standalone fic.
"In addition, there were supposed to be more Omake. But Sheo realized at the last minute that those two Omake –which made for 2,000 words total– had a lot of promise in them. So he decided to expand them into full-fledged standalone fics, which he will release in good time."
"Oh, great," Haruhi muttered. "At this rate, that dumbass will never continue Not Quite What I Expected, much less actually finish it…"
"Please enjoy the Omake," Airi bid.
Take Your Child To Work Day
Ciel stared at the youngest member of the joint Anglican-Roman Catholic kill team. After the pony-tailed redhead wearing a nun-in-training outfit glared back at her, the Burial Agent turned to her Anglican counterpart.
"Father Kotomine, why did you bring your daughter with you tonight?"
"It's Take Your Child To Work Day," was his diffident reply.
"That's not a reason to bring a child to a Dead Apostle hunt," Ciel scolded.
Kirei thought it over. "She also has homework requiring her to write an essay on what her parents do for a living," he revealed. "It is reputed to be a matter of life and death."
"Stupid Despair-sensei," Kyouko grumbled to herself. "I wish he ends up in a harem full of yandere girls who were donors of a girl who was even more yandere for him…"
She gave Ciel a hopeful look. "I don't suppose you can spare me a Scripture or a Black Key, Sister Ciel? I know how to transform a Scripture into a Black Key," Kyouko explained, "But Dad's being stingy with his spares and I once caught him muttering about how I can serve as bait..."
For all she acted cold and logical while slaying vampires, Ciel was at heart still the gentle baker girl Elesia from long ago. "I don't think you understand, Kyouko-chan," she began. "It's dangerous here-"
"I'll trade you an apple for it," Kyouko tempted her.
"It's a curry-coated apple," Kirei added.
Sighing as she handed a spear-shaped Black Key to the delighted Kyouko in exchange for said spicy treat, Ciel consoled herself with the thought that at least Kirei wasn't a perverted pedophile priest from a hentai game.
That positive thought survived until the ensuing free-for-all between the Anglican-Catholic joint strike force, a separate all-Catholic team of zealots led by Paladin Alexander Anderson, the vampire hunters of the Mage Association headed by that stuck-up aristocrat Lorelei Barthomeloi, Altrouge Brunestud and her coterie of Dead Apostle Ancestors, the last True Ancestor a.k.a that bitch Arcuied, a surprise appearance by the miko of the Shrovetide (who was technically a vampire,) and Tohno-kun.
"Best field trip ever," Kyouko concluded at the bedside of the object of her sick visit.
"How unfortunate," she was told.
"Damn it, Sheo!" screeched Haruhi. "Stop being vague and just say which Kamijou it is!"
The Thirteenth Annual Emiya-Kotomine Get-Together-Like-Cats-And-Dogs
…announced the banner gripped by Sella and Leysritt.
The respective aces of the clans glared at each other.
"FOR EVULZ!" declared Kirei, who lunged forward with two handfuls of Black Keys.
"FOR JUSTICE!" grunted out Kiritsugu as he double-wielded his Calico and Thompson Contender guns gangster-style.
Kyouko resolutely refused to look at them. "I don't know them," she told herself over and over again.
"No fighting," Shirou Emiya plaintively begged.
"You two need to relax." Caren Hortensia Kotomine nonchalantly enjoyed a box of popcorn and a bottle of soda held by the happily-henpecked Avenger.
"Get him, Dad/Kiritsugu!" Momo Sakura Kotomine and Illyasviel von Einzbern cheered their fathers while glaring at each other.
"Kirei is so hot," groaned Claudia Hortensia and Kyouko's mother.
"Kiritsugu is so manly," Shirley, Natalya Kaminski, Irisviel von Einzbern, and Taiga Fujimura moaned.
Not willing to be outdone by his son, Risei Kotomine flexed all his muscles at once. His garment was instantly torn to shreds, leaving him shirtless and showing off his very muscular physique. Every Command Spell on his body glowed.
"These muscles were passed down the Kotomine line for generations!" Risei declared.
"GRANDPA!" Kyouko shrieked while trying not to claw out her eyes. "PUT A SHIRT ON, FOR THE LOVE OF GODOKA!"
"That is the end of this war," the blank-eyed Shirou was telling himself. "That is the responsibility I took when I swore to be a Hero of Justice. It is the first price I have to pay to become my ideal. There's no need to talk about the obvious outcome." He absently brought up his hands, which would never hold anything despite creating over a thousand blades, and prayed. "Shirou Emiya will turn his mind to steel, and become a Hero of Justice…"
"No," growled Jubstacheit 'Acht' von Einzbern, much to the relief of the heterosexual male readers.
Lancer tried to sidle away as innocently as possible for a lanky man in blue tights. But the deliberate lack of suspicious movement on his part only served to attract a bushel of Black Keys and an Origin Bullet to his forehead.
"I hate you, Sheo Darren," the Servant cursed before expiring into golden sparkles.
"Oh, my God!" gasped Bazett McRemitz. "They killed Lancer!"
"You bastard," Homura Akemi muttered.
Everyone stared at the Puella Magi, who stood out like the third Madoka movie.
"Sheo saw the doujin where Kiritsugu handed me a grenade," Homura explained.
"Oh." Everyone nodded. They also politely ignored the giant black wings of corrosion jutting from Homura's back.
"Continue to entertain me, mongrels," Gilgamesh gloated.
Saber kicked him in the shin.
In Sheo's long-forgotten Gundam Seed Destiny fan fiction The Miss Seed Destiny Pageant, Shin Asuka screeched. "THAT HURT! DAMN YOU, KING ARTHUR!" he ranted. "I'LL KILL YOU! I'LL KILL YOU DEAD!"
Festum-Mayu could not pout, sigh, or smack him with a paper fan. Life as a xenophobic silicon-based alien was suffering for aspiring tsukkomi.
Oh, wait. She could fire a micro black hole at him or assimilate him into the Festum collective.
"CURSE YOU, DIKEIDO! THIS IS YOUR FAULT SOMEHOW!"
They called it the Reign of Fire…