Disclaimer: Final Fantasy Tactics is copyrighted to Square Enix. Fate/Stay Night is copyrighted to Type Moon. Anything done here is for fun and creative liberties to mix the two fandoms together without worry of lawsuit. Also, the picture (minus the title added on via Paint) used for the cover is drawn by 00lin00 of the deviantart website, asked with permission to be used here.
One by one, knights fell to the golden halberd, vainly attempting to parry or flee as it neared them. The assault did not waver, and the giant's size grew steadily larger through the souls of the fallen. The captain of the Hokuten barely survived the ambush Berserker made, but his forces were dwindling by the second.
Wiegraf and the Death Corps had nothing on this servant. And the captain knew when he was beat, sad as it was. Not that they weren't leaving without their objective done first.
"Men!" he ordered. "Fall back and search for the princess!"
A remaining vassal turned to him just as one stabbed Berserker at his kneecap. "But captain, she's on the bridge behind the giant! It's impossible to breach him!"
"We don't have to," the captain answered, solemnly watching the servant skewered another brave man. "His master managed to Teleport her away during the confusion. Since he's of Limberry and an ally of Goltana, he'll try to leave from the east or northeast of here. We just need to spread out and cover them."
"That still won't stop him for-" the knight paused, noting a shadow looming over them. They looked up to see Berserker blocking their view of the sun, arms raised to slam down his weapon like a hammer. "-COMING THIS WAY!"
Oddly enough to their rescue, a flurry of black bullets hit the back of the servant, followed by a yellow-blue bolt from above striking his body. Berserker appeared to be unharmed by the barrage, but still turned around to see who attacked him. The captain and his knight followed his gaze to see the holy knight and chemist standing side by side, weapon and hands respectively held out that proved their assistance. The chemist looked reluctant, though her leader fired another volley for good measure.
"▅▅▅▅▅▅!" Berserker roared again, still unflinching to the attack. With new targets in sight, he stomped over to them with his weapon aimed to skewer. Ignoring the remaining knights, a good number of Hokuten let out a breath of relief to their respite.
"Couldn't have asked for a better distraction," the captain smirked, before turning to his survivors, giving his orders in a hushed command. "You two," he pointed to the most able and least injured men. "Search the perimeter for the princess. If too many of us are gone, the Servant would know. We'll hold him off as long as we can, but kill her as soon as you find her. If our troop is to die today, so shall the princess."
"Yes sir!" two knights saluted, and hurriedly made for the slope down to the bottom of the falls.
"Now then…" the captain turned back to Berserker, arms drawn and tension high. "For Duke Larg, Lord Dycedarg-"
"And the king!" they all cried. Then as one, they rushed the Servant.
Delita was always a calm, analytic person, even in the worst of situations. Algus' ambush managed to take them by surprise, as well as his stealthy kidnapping of the princess from under his team's noses. Matters weren't helping that he finally got hold of Caster, but found out she was busy fighting the servant Lancer.
However, Delita knew the limits of Teleport. As limitless as it was to any (sensible) vertical length, Algus still couldn't extend his reach horizontally further than his stamina would allow. He would still have to be in the general area at least, like below the bridge.
Delita's plan was to have Claire reach the other end of the bridge with Luke and transverse around to the lower levels. He and Monica would distract Berserker and pray to Ajora that Caster would arrive soon. He was feeling less sure of that plan as the servant marched toward them, disregarding the other knights like flies.
That's when the cavalry came in, in the form an orange haired knight leading a chocobo charge. She stopped her mount on a slope perpendicular to the winding distance between man and servant, and drew her sword before offering her prayer. "The devil's spirit of restlessness… cleanse thee!"
She then struck the blade in the ground beside her. "Split Punch!"
A black and white cross sword shot from beneath the servant, seemingly impaling it from the neck. It beckoned an eerie glow of white flames, spelling doom to the wicked, before bursting into nothingness.
Berserker was held back slightly, but looked only annoyed rather than injured; not unlike when shrugging off his curse and Monica's black magic. In retaliation, it swung its halberd down and destroyed the earth around it. The resulting explosion coursed through where the chocobo riders had perched, rending the terrain asunder much like a minotaur monster would.
The female knights had no time to retreat or guard, let alone were able to on startled birds. The hit connected and sent all of them soaring, with a two riders and a chocobo making the unfortunate plunge to the chasm, screaming as they did.
The orange haired holy knight in particular was blown straight off her chocobo before flailing in the air. She landed like a sandbag behind Delita and Monica a few moments later.
"A little more oomph, if you will, sir knight?" Delita casually remarked to her. "I don't think he felt that one."
She flushed hotly, embarrassed at both her lack of power and at the man's jest. All else she managed in response was a groan of pain.
Suddenly, the sky darkened and a rift briefly opened above. Everyone paused to look at the sight, and saw a small creature flutter out. Its fur was white and fuzzy, much like the red pom growing out from its head, with small black wings and a squinty face that was no doubt cute.
"Kupo!" it cried, dancing briefly in air before a soothing light rained down.
"A moogle summon?" Monica blinked, glancing down to see their wounds slowly close up and heal.
"Delita! Monica! Agrias!"
They all looked up to see Ramza riding to them. Delita was relieved to see him again, but not when the giant was looming behind him. "Watch out!"
"▅▅▅▅▅▅!" Berserker roared, pulling his spear back for a killing thrust-
Delita blinked in surprise. He exchanged glances with an equally wide eyed Monica to see if he wasn't imaging things. Agrias (Ramza had called her), was just as baffled. They turned back to see that, indeed, Berserker's face was being blinded by the moogle's body… which should have disappeared after healing them.
The unexpected action was enough to give even Berserker pause, if only for a few befuddled moments. In retaliation, he reached to his face with his free hand to grab the furry devil. The moogle fluttered out at the last moment, resulting in the servant to quite painfully smack and clench his own face.
Now infuriated, Berserker turned to the fluttering creature, seeing it shake its backside in a taunting gesture. "Kupopopo!"
"▅▅▅▅▅▅!" Berserker roared and swung his halberd to kill the moogle-
–Only to miss. Where the halberd had been swung, it managed to shift harmlessly away from the arc.
Berserker swung again.
And again, and again, and again!
"Kupo kupopo!" Whoosh! Whish! Whoosh!
"▅▅▅▅▅▅!" the servant roared again in a flurry of swings, focusing his sights and energy on the little moogle that just wouldn't die.
One Hokuten soldier felt gutsy and rushed for the giant's leg. Berserker's head snapped to the man in question. He momentarily forgetting about the moogle, and attempted to stomp on him. Just before he could, the moogle latched its body on his face again, blinding the servant from his kill. The process began again as he stepped back, angrily slapped his face, and attempted to kill the flying furball.
Confident and feeling fortunate, the rest of the Hokuten swarmed Berserker at all sides to attack him while the moogle taunted him. They weren't completely safe from Berserker's wide arcs and stomps, but his distraction made it easier to try and overwhelm him in their suicide gambit.
As everyone stopped to watch this bizarre spectacle, Delita himself barely noticed Ramza before his chocobo flapped and perform a curing dance from its feathers. Docile birds, great steads, and stable magic circuits; chocobos were very interesting creatures.
But his mind was still on the jumpy moogle. He turned to his childhood friend, helping Agrias back to her feet. "Ramza, how did you-?"
"He won't be distracted for long," he said curtly, before turning to Agrias. "Where's the rest of the Lionsguard?"
"I don't know," she admitted. "Berserker's attack blew us all away."
"I saw two knights fall in the chasm, along with a chocobo," Delita answered, pointing to the waterfall.
Agrias paled. "Oh Ajora…!"
"I'm sure they're fine," Monica quickly added. "They were close to the waterfall, so they would land in the pond below instead of jagged rocks."
"If anything, they might be able to find the princess this way," Delita added. "Algus could have only escaped unnoticed by going vertically below the bridge-"
"If you knaves had never had kidnapped Princess Ovelia in the first place," Agrias snapped. "This wouldn't have happened!"
The other holy knight glared at her. "Would you have preferred her at Larg's own castle and assassinated there, with no chance of proving their corruption otherwise?"
"We can argue about the circumstances to this later!" Ramza snapped. "Right now we have to stop Algus and Berserker! Delita, where's Caster?"
"Somewhere below the bridge," he grimaced. "She was meant to set off a trap at the western plateau, but it shouldn't have taken her this long. I think she might have been intercepted by another servant." He knew the full circumstances, of course, but had consciously went for a vague explanation.
"Another servant?" Monica squawked. "Wh-what are we going to do then?! Caster can handle both two servants on her own!"
Ramza stared to the angry giant. "She won't have to."
So engaged in his infuriating target, Berserker was blindsided by a yellow bullet slamming to his armor. The force of the attack managed to pierce his bronze skin, and barreled him across the terrain. This action also blew away the Hokuten army that surrounded him, now littering the area half-dead and groaning.
The yellow bullet was really another chocobo rider, albeit one more daring than Agrias and the Lionsguard. Her chocobo mirrored her confidence and pride, glaring fiercely at the servant despite the lack of riding armor. The rider herself was a rather modest and regal individual, caressing the bird's neck with pure faith that she would hold on without reigns. Her sword at arm was shining silver-blue sword that managed to leave quite a mark on Berserker. And despite her tension, she managed give a warm smile to the moogle that cheerfully flapped goodbye to her.
Guess Caster was right, Delita mused, staring at her sword. He would summon Saber.
As the moogle dispersed back to the magic world, Ramza slumped slightly and heaved a sigh. "Phew… that took quite a bit out of me."
"Ramza," Delita began, but his old friend brushed his concerns quickly.
"I'm fine," he replied. "I just need to catch my breath." A few intakes later, he stood fully back up. "Now then, time to get serious."
Delita blinked. "Serious?"
Ramza held his left hand over his eye, and the holy knight could sense a flow of mana circling around his right eye. He then said two words like an incantation, except they weren't.
What happened to him was not so much seeing but knowing. The entirety of Zirekile presented as a map, with everyone paced on certain square spots on said map. Berserker was an exception as it stood several squares high and took over two of them side by side. His stat screen left him worry, being almost all As and Bs (with a D+ for Luck).
He knew about everyone else too. He knew about Luke and Claire holding off the other end of the bridge from Hokuten reinforcements, fighting their way down the lower road to the riverbed. He also could pinpoint two other battles going on below the bridge. One was almost too quick to pick up, so he deduced it being a conflict between Servants, and the other involved knights from both the Lionsguard and Hokuten, with Algus and Ovelia at the sidelines.
Something peculiar happened when he scried Ovelia though. As if setting off a trap, a surge of information forced itself onto him connected to her spell knowledge. Her Holy Magic, linked to her princess lineage as well as the Clerics of the Glabados Church, was limited but potent in mixing numerous enhancements at once, almost as an inverse example of curing or dispelling multiple ailments. Incidentally, both such spells were a part of Ovelia, and he captured every detail of how they worked.
Ramza, having cancelled his spell after finding what he needed (and then some), felt another relapse of energy and stumbled. As if anticipating this, Delita caught and steadied him upright this time. After a few deep breaths, the blonde magus pointed past a cliff ledge to the right of the bridge end, opposite of the waterfall.
"Algus and the princess are heading west," he gasped. "He plans to escape from the lower route and head up to Riovannes from there."
"Positive. Saber can handle Berserker from here. I'll go after-"
"No," Delita cut him off, already marching to the spot directed. "You stay here and hold the giant and Hokuten in check. Monica, listen to his orders like before and tell the others the same."
"Algus is my concern, and I shall finish what I started. You hold off Berserker here."
The tone and glare as Delita said it held finality and resolve. Ramza knew this was something his friend had to do himself and nodded for understanding.
Delita waved once as he turned to jump down the chasm. A loud booming noise drew them to see Saber jump-slashing at Berseker, blocking her with his proportional sized spear. Alicia and her chocobo eventually gathered to the others in time to watch Delita's departure.
"Where's he going?" Alicia asked.
"To rescue the Princess from Algus," Ramza answered. "We're going to stay here and support Saber in the meantime."
The Lionsguard and Ex-Hokuten chemist stared at one another. As one, the women turned to the ensuing fight between servants, as well as the shaken yet quickly recovering Hokuten.
"A truce then," Agrias said, with no small amount of reluctance. Monica relaxed and nodded eagerly.
The blue-clad servant forced initiative as he thrust his weapon forward, along his own body. Caster forced herself out of her shock and aimed at the water below, unleashing a single Gandr shot.
Another explosion of river burst from below the chasm, blocking view between the both of them. Caster quickly reinforces her legs as she sidesteps from the blind thrust. Acting quickly, she squarely roundhouse kicks the spear forward with her left leg just as it's about to swing towards her. This action, coupled by her physique and reinforcement, forces back his arm as well as nearly kicking his spear away.
White fog and water droplets are all that lies between them. Caster takes a moment to feel satisfied of his startled reaction before following through. Her hand makes a familiar hand-gun pose and instantly gathers prana for her Gandr.
Although, Gandrs would be a more accurate term for this instance.
The point-blank range and force of the spell volley, fired nonstop at the forehead, would have overwhelmed anyone short of a servant. Lancer, with his Magic Resistance and Battle Continuation, could withstand the barrage of bullets, but not the headache they were making. The servant forces himself to swing his weapon to her torso to stop the attack.
Caster ducks just below where the weapon would bisect her, and quickly jumps back as he swings down. She resumes her Gandr rounds mid-jump, fired at a fabled SMG rate that would make any spellcaster green with envy.
Lancer follows after her like a blur, effortlessly twirling his red spear in front him to stop the barrage. Despite being in water thigh deep, his speed doesn't diminish even at the slightest as he runs through. The gap between the two servants closes in seconds. Lancer jumps at her falling form, spear still spinning until he looms above her and pulls it back above his head.
But Caster back flips, throwing her further reinforced foot to Lancer's chin as she does so. The spearman's head snaps back, losing momentum as his body plummets backward. His back splashes down to one of the deeper parts of the river. The red robed servant lands just a few feet away from him, taking the brief respite to catch her breath.
It wasn't long, as the enemy servant quickly rises up and walks to a shallow spot of the river in front of him. His entire body was dripping water, from his sagging short blue hair to his lean bodysuit, but his mouth was bleeding through his smirking teeth. He rubbed his chin in slight appreciation.
"Nice kick," he complimented. "You're a lot faster than you were back then: stronger too."
Caster huffed in annoyance. "Making small talk with the person you're supposed to kill… you haven't changed at all, Cu Chulainn."
Lancer chuckled. "And still as haughty as ever: you're one to talk, Tohsaka Rin." He paused in thought. "That is how you Japanese say your names, right? It's been like, what, fourteen millenniums since then?"
Caster narrowed her eyes to a glare. "How do you even remember that?" she dangerously asked. "How do you remember anything? Your memory of the war should have been erased after you died."
"You remember the war, too."
"I was alive when I was a master of the Fifth Fuyuki Holy Grail War! That war was a part of my past history before I was made a heroic spirit! It's completely different!"
He shrugged casually and without care. "Well, not sure what to tell ya. Still, there's no real reason to fret over this, right?"
"Of course there is! It makes no sense!"
"Then let's focus again on the one thing that matters: our battle!"
As he spoke, Lancer was lowering his stance to a pounce with his spear aimed for her heart. He then jumped with the speed well worthy of his class to strike the killing blow.
Fortunately, Caster was ready. She slid her hand into her robe, reaching for something. Her hand shot out just as Lancer's spear came close, blocking his red weapon with her black one.
Lancer's eyes widened and he jumped away from her. The weapon she held was akin to a dagger or short sword, with the blade equally long as the hilt itself. Said hilt held a reddish jewel at the end of a gold stopper, while the rest was decorated in leather. The blade was entirely black, expertly crafted and sharp enough to reach the heart in one stab.
"A sword?" Lancer frowned. "Really? As if your Archer wasn't bad enough! Since when did Casters learn to hold their own with melee weapons?"
"Says the Lancer whom I recall has extensive knowledge on rune magic," she countered, holding her weapon poised at her opponent.
He couldn't help but to smirk. "Good point. Though I'll admit, this is turning out to be quite fun. I'm starting to get an idea how you gotten here."
"Flattery won't get you anywhere, Lancer," she smiled back, in spite herself.
They resumed battle, this time in a dance of blades instead of chasing through magic. Lancer, as Caster would remember, fought viciously in thrusts and swings in blinding speed, forcing himself in close quarters to strike his opponent even if they retreat. But Caster, while no Saber, had many years training her Reinforcement, reflexes, and even wielding a sword or dagger. By her "teachers'" standards, she was decent at best, but it was enough to hold her own against a servant of the spear, even with a shorter ranged weapon.
Duck down. Feint to the side. Block. Overhead slash. Thrust then slash. Block. Block. Parry. Block. Kick. Cut. Dodge.
Caster knew Lancer was holding back: he always enjoyed the thrill of battle. After all, why drag on a fight if he could use his Noble Phantasm and get done with it? She already knew his identity (and vice versa, much to her frustration and confusion). Not that she was complaining; Gae Bolg was the cursed spear that could strike the heart before the actual hit if activated. All the more better for her if he didn't decide to kill her.
Then, all of the sudden, he stopped. Lancer, in the middle of a deadlock between his spear and her dagger, had turned his head up towards the bridge high above. A moment later, he jumped away to get a closer look. Looking up, Caster to could make out the juggernaut Berserker swinging his weapon on a small woman, armed with a sword and shield. The battle looked one sided, but the woman continued to block and parry the blows that effortlessly slaughtered an army. She had to be a servant.
Through reinforced eye-sight, Caster felt her breath hitch as she recognized the face. Is that…?
"So the Saber servant has arrived," Lancer said, before turning to Caster. "Sorry to fight and run, Rin, but my master was pretty specific that I fight Saber if he or she showed up. I always seem to end up with cowardly clergy types."
He offered a friendly wave and smile to her, as if the fight was already behind them. A moment later, he jumped above and beyond the chasm, intercepting Saber in the process before she could make a decisive blow to Berserker.
"Unhand me this instant!"
"Be silent and still, princess! You'll give us away!"
"That is my intention!"
Algus grunted as he jerked her arm again. He was barely lucky to teleport a good distance bellow and away from Delita, and he couldn't make another jump with the both of them when she kept squirming for a chance to escape. So he was now dragging her to where he left his chocobo and ride off to Limberry.
He had thought of carrying the princess over his shoulder like a bag to save time, but it was hardly a noble or knightly thing to do. Though if she kept stalling him and allowing men to slip away from Berserker's eye, he might reconsider.
The samurai made it as far as half-way through the bank before facing trouble. He could tell that a servant battle was happening somewhere in the area, but it wasn't his own. He would assume one of them would be Delita's servant, Caster, but what about the third?
Just as he was taking precaution to avoid that cross-fire, two figures fell from above and splashed into the water. They resurfaced slightly dazed, both resembling female knights of similar builds.
Ovelia gasped. "Lavian! Fiona!"
Both knights turned to her voice. "Your highness/Princess!" they both called out, and rushed over to attack her kidnaper.
Annoyed, Algus shoved the princess aside and reached for his blade. He didn't draw it immediately, but crotched slightly and hovered his hand over the hilt. "Evil souls of the dark, gather by my call! Blinding Darkness!"
As his blade was drawn, a pulse of black energy enveloped the area surrounding him. Both knights, moments from striking him with their swords, stopped in their tracks due to the point blank explosion.
Their charge, though delayed, wouldn't be denied. Immediately after the attack, they pushed on further with their swords to strike him down. Algus attempted to block with his still drawn Kotetsu but realized the blade snapped off when he invoked the spirit inside. As such, Lavian's blade flew down with no resistance to his cheek and breastplate, staining him with his own blood.
Algus let out a grunt pain as he stepped back and felt the burnt side of his face briefly. The blood on his hand marked sign of a flesh wound. Still, the knight had the nerve to cut him there… "You're lucky I only had one Kotetsu," he glared darkly before tossing the broken blade aside.
"Princess! Run!" Fiona called from behind Lavian. "We'll hold him off!"
"Thank you!" Ovelia said, already splashing to her feet away from Algus. If the Lionsguard were here, then Agrias would be too! All she had to do was find her-!
"Kyaah!" she suddenly cried, falling down. It felt like her body tripped on its own, but she saw that an arrow bolt was lodged into one of her legs. The trajectory came from Algus, a crossbow gripped in his hand.
"Ah ah ah~," he warned. "We can't keep the Duke waiting and worried for you forever, you know."
"You bastard!" Lavian cried. "How dare you strike down her Highness?!"
He responded by firing at her scalp. The whizzing arrowhead left a thin gash along Lavian's head, who barely dodged in time.
"For what it's worth, she's still alive," Algus said, reloading another bolt. "I swear; did you honestly believe I would kill the princess like some common farm hand?"
"It would have saved us the trouble, at least."
Turning to the direction of the voice, two Hokuten knights stood over a cliff looming above them. Both were smug and leering, drawing their swords and jumping into the water below after a moment's pause.
Taken by surprise, the Lionsguard quickly intercepted the Hokuten knights, each pair crossing blades with another. No knight was given an inch as their armor waded in the water and shields bounced off swords. Both were equal in strength and doctrine, and careful into not letting a single mistake slip past their guards.
Algus smiled to himself, slowly moving back. What luck; two opposing parties arguing for the princess' life or death, and they managed to distract each other from his own presence!
Slowly, he turned and walked towards the princess, who had feebly attempted to crawl further away from him. "You're not going anywhere, your highness," he whispered in a mocking tone, ready to shoot her legs again. Perhaps crawling around in the wet, red riverbed will do her some humility. Ajora knows what it had done for him crawling back from Fort Zeakden.
Wait, red riverbed?
The samurai glanced down to see the area he stood starting to glow a blood-red hue, yet the grass wasn't burning. If it wasn't a fire spell, than that could only mean…
He bit back a curse as he immediately shifted his body to the right. A blood colored spike phased through his armor and pierced the body, having aimed where his heart was just moments prior. As quickly as it came, the spike receded and vanished.
Algus quickly reached and covered the wound under his armor, exhaling several breaths of pain and anguish. He noticed the princess in front of him staring to his right in slight hope and admiration. Following her gaze, she saw a familiar commoner posing as a holy knight, standing on level ground to him. His sword was now several feet deep in the ground in front of him, proof he had attacked him with a holy sword skill.
"You're not going anywhere, Algus," Delita mocked his own words, hands resting on his blade with (in his honest opinion) faux dignity.
Algus glared back, aiming his crossbow at the Holy Knight. "At least allow me the favor to return you to your dead sister."
"Teta's already with me." Sword withdrawn, tucked in and parallel to the ground, Delita channeled mana into the blade again, utilizing Caster's curse spell this time.
"Algus is my concern, and I shall finish what I started. You hold off Berserker here."
Those words still reeled in Ramza's head, as if just realizing there was a subtle insult to them. Even so, he felt no offense. He was torn by Teta's death as well and wished to avenge her properly, but she was Delita's sister by blood. Perhaps he'll do a better job dealing the killing blow than he had. For now, he focused on the duel between servants near the falls as Agrias and the others searched for their remaining chocobos before the Hokuten do.
Each swing of Berserker's halberd was bounced off Saber's shield or redirected by her speed. For every twin strikes of Saber's blade it was shrugged off by Berserker's armor, leaving minimal damage. It was more than could be said then the Hokuten that had fallen to his might, but Saber was far from winning.
In a moment's lapse, Berserker grazed her sleeveless arm by mere inches. All it left was a thin red line for the gash. Saber cringed and faltered for a moment, but resumed her parries and assault before her enemy could follow through.
Berserker's rage knew no bounds, screaming roars of bloodlust with each swing or thrust. In the servant's madness, it could plan no further than repeatedly swinging unless guided by his master's word. In some cases, the repeated actions yield the best results. However, one swing was over-estimated, as it allowed Saber to slip through his defense before he could stop her.
Just as the servant of the sword attempted a jump attack at the giant's head, she felt a presence coming straight for her, and searched for it. Saber could barely make out the manic grin on the spearman's face as he all but vaulted towards her with his weapon piercing forward. He was the fourth servant Delita warned about.
Forgetting Berserker for the moment, she quickly turned so her body faced Lancer fully, and curled her arms and legs close to her shield guarding front. It very much saved her life from a fatal strike, but did little to stop the momentum of Lancer's charge.
To the spectators watching, it was as if a sonic boom blasted the swordswoman towards the waterfall. Water surged out from the exploding collision, surging out a wave that shook the whole area and briefly dropped a wet curtain between man and servant.
Berserker himself was pushed back by the force, with head thrown back and legs retreating to find footing again. The non-servant fighters could only cover themselves from the tailwind that blew against them and the shellshock of the falls, only to find that they were alone with the Servant of Madness.
Ramza recovered first, turning and calling towards the direction his servant was flown off. "Saber!"
His attention for Saber was diverted as Berserker charged forward screaming, leaving the bridge edge to cross back to the western plateau. On instinct he channeled an aria-less Quake to the distance between them. The shifted earth caved in for a miniature sinkhole, though would work more as a trip spot for the servant's foot.
Indeed, the hole barely managed to hold the giant and stop his momentum, but not before swinging his clenched hand like a hammer down where the magus stood.
Before he realized it, Ramza was sprawled on the field moments before the haymaker hit him, due to being pelted to the side by a magic bullet. The cost of survival suddenly made itself known with a slight nausea filling his body.
The opposite end of Berserker's arm stood the red robed magician from the church: Delita's servant Caster. Her extended finger was both his cause of injury and savior from death, and he was willing to ignore the former for this case.
She knew of Ovelia still under the bridge, and had almost rushed to her master to help him. Delita refused, claiming the battle to be personal. He then mentally ordered her to fight Berserker, assisting the man who is now Saber's master.
The two of them exchanged glances for a moment: bronze brown meeting cerulean blue, quickly understanding one another. A truce was made, shared by the curtest of nods.
Ramza quickly rolled to his feet just as Berserker staggered to climb up. On instinct, he followed Caster who made a sprint for the bridge. She turned back once to fire a few more Gandrs at the mad servant, tempting him to follow.
As if sensing their doomed run, the remaining Lionsguard, Agrias and Alicia (plus Monica on one of the other knight's chocobo that didn't fall in), rode next to Ramza and Caster respectively onto their chocobos. A giant hand just brushed against a bird's backside, prompting it to run faster at a nervous squawk!
"Where to?" Agrias asked, believing they had a plan in mind.
"Across the bridge, but make sure Berserker follows!" Caster ordered.
"That shouldn't be too hard!" Alicia quipped sarcastically.
Lancer's force of impact hitting the waterfall shook even the plateau above. To the eyes of Gafgarion and Rad, it was the act of a blue-and-red arrow that nearly ended them. Both mercenaries struggled and flailed to keep the footing of their chocobos least they all fall forward into the chasm. It was probably the fact that they were both on chocobos that saved their lives; the earth below them cracked and caved in the moment the arrow hit the waterfall. The speed of the land destruction was not unlike the waterfall itself, and spread several feet far and across in an attempt to sink any human with it.
A human or common land monster would have easily fallen to their doom. But it was nothing to a chocobo, born with the speed that could outrun even the fiercest of predators.
When the cave-in stopped, Gaff and Rad were more than a safe distance away due to their frantic mounts. After the fissure stopped, they calmed the birds down enough to walk back to the edge line. The riders and their mounts were shocked to see the top of the waterfall reformed with a jagged slope of rocks compared to the original drop. The gap was spread out so wide in comparison to the river, yet it looked more like a funnel. The river still flowed down, now trickling down the wet and mostly destroyed rocks that had collapsed on itself due to the servant collision.
And the mercenaries could hear blades clanging with one another, somehow shifting or cracking boulders the size of statues.
"I told those fools this job was fruitless!" Gafgarion cursed. "Never mind the princess' safety: if this keeps up, there'll be nothing left of Zirekile, let alone the people here!"
The darkness of the makeshift cave was of little hindrance of either servant. The sparks of their weapons clashing provided enough light to know where the other was, and the foundation that was once entrapping them was carved away by their wide swings. These factors, among others, forced Saber deeper inside by the relentless blue-clad servant. Splashes underneath their lithe feet echoed through the cave, and rocks crumbled from above as if ready to collapse any moment.
A mixed blessing in this fight is that Berserker didn't follow them. As skilled as she was, Saber knew she couldn't handle two servants at once, even in a mêlée à trois. While Berserker had an overwhelming size and power to match, Lancer had range and speed to force her into defensive maneuvers. She only hoped Ramza could survive on his own for a while, until she could defeat the Servant before her.
As it was, Saber found herself raising her shield more often than swinging her sword. Her strikes would be blocked or parried by pole end of the spear, and then Lancer would spin and thrust several times. The points would either stop dead at the center of her shield, or slide past it and skewer into the wet bedding.
"C'mon, c'mon c'mon c'mon!" Lancer taunted during his flurry. "Don't hold out on me, Saber! Even Caster put up a better fight than this!"
Saber saw that he was no ordinary Lancer; for the lesser knights that bore dragon-styled armor, their main focus was to use their agility to jump through the air and land on their enemies. The lances and spears they used were more of an ideal weapon to maximize the damage potential, and are usually exclusive to them for this purpose.
But this servant used his weapon with talent and passion. No arts, no tricks, no magic; just pure refined weapon skill. So refined that for a weapon primarily used for thrusting and stabbing, his speed in the thrusts were just as deadly as the swings rivaling a sword. Although the fact that his spear was no doubt a Noble Phantasm would have some play in that.
Luckily, she had her own Noble Phantasms. One in each hand, no less.
As Lancer eased back to make a lunge, Saber saw her opening and swung overhead. The blue blade glowed and pulsed with prana, escaping as a crescent wave towards Lancer as it swung down.
He immediately abandoned his attack and jumped to his right. The crescent continued on until hitting the end of the cave-in, letting a sliver of light shine through. Saber immediately followed through intercepting Lancer by bashing him against the wall with her shield. For good measure, she swung her sword at his exposed neck, only to be blocked by his scarlet spear from his free hand.
The two glared fiercely as they continued the deadlock, but Lancer's face soon gave way to confusion. The attack she made created a small opening in the once dark space, and allowed light to shine in. He thought she looked familiar, but it was only now that he was close enough to notice clearly.
"…damn, you look so much like her," he muttered.
"What was that?" Saber demanded, her tension easing somewhat.
"Nothing, just musing to myself," Lancer answered with a feral smile. "But all good things must come to an end."
Without warning, Saber felt the blunt end of the spear swing at her knee, pivoted in place while still guarding Lancer's neck. The sudden blow caused her to stagger back and allow the lithe servant to break her hold, and then graze her shoulder with the spear tip while distracted. He positioned himself with his back facing the light's opening, and pulled his spear in striking position parallel to his arm while gathering prana.
"When you hear this spear's name, you'll die. Fair warning."
Saber gripped the wound on her shoulder, grimacing at the situation she was in. The space of the cave was too narrow to dodge his charged attack, and was blocking the only exit. She could use her sword, but to use its full power could very well destroy Zirekile Falls, and Ramza and the others with it. She would have to play this defensively.
Lancer smirked to himself as he saw the swordswoman hide behind her shield, and even more when she wiped some of her blood on it moments prior. It was a sturdy thing alright, but he didn't recall much about famous shields. And even if it would cover over her heart, it would do nothing to stop his attack.
He leaped and extended his spear for a killing blow. "Gae Bolg!"
He beat her to the punch in calling the attack: even if she would stop the spear's advance, she would still be skewered from the inside. That was the power of the cursed lance. That was why he was Cu Chulainn the Irish folklore hero.
Except… she was still standing. And her shield was glowing, with a now visible glowing red cross at the center. In fact, he sort of felt pulled closer to the shield when the name was called out. Did her cross smeared blood have something to do with all this?
"You should be died," Lancer noted, but wasn't all that surprised. The last Saber he fought also survived Gae Bolg.
This Saber just smiled. "This shield is a past down treasure of my family for generations, blessed with the power to repel curses. Your death sentence has no effect on me."
Lancer tried pulling his spear away, but found it stuck fast in the center. Was it magnetized or something?
"And when my shield absorbs the energy of your curse," Saber added. "It converts it into pure prana and expels it right back out."
The blue-haired servant glanced back to the still smiling girl. It came to him that his Noble Phantasm was still active until it actually hit the mark of the girl's heart. But as long as her shield was up, all prana of his attack would go into that and charge it. The moment he would stop it, she would blast him point blank with his own medicine.
"Clever girl," he admired for a moment, before deactivating his Phantasm.
As expected, she raised her shield over her face and fired the stored Prana at him. Lancer was a naturally fast servant, even for his class, and he could feel his speed increase due to his Disengage skill. To his credit, he managed to skewer through the rocks of the cave-in and dive down before the shield beam punched the rest of it wide open.
The chocobos rushed single filed on the rickety bridge, squawking in panic all the while. The mad servant was close behind, swatting away the few Hokuten that tried to overwhelm him. Berserker's stomps only made the birds more frantic as they shook the bridge like ripples in water.
One frantic chocobo, by the name of Mindy, suffered the misfortune of one of its legs breaking through the wood. The substitute rider Monica startled, almost thrown out of the bird outright from the sudden slip. She was urging the reins on the bird, trying to calm it down before its frantic flailing made it sink lower in the hole it made.
"Come on, girl," Monica urged. "Get up! Hurry!"
Ramza looked back to keep an eye on Berserker, but was surprised to see one of the chocobo's stopped in its tracks. Suddenly fearful for his previous comrade's life, he jumped out of Agrias' bird and sprinted towards Monica.
Agrias skid her bird to a stop, forcing Alicia to do the same. "Ramza!" she cried.
"Leave it!" Caster barked. "The only good thing the bird has to us now is being a roadblock for Berserker!"
Ramza ignored her, rushing over to Monica and helped her over the chocobo before anything else. It was too scared to keep moving, less it be eaten by the servant behind it or slip and fall further. Thinking it through, though, it the latter might be the best alternative for the chocobo in this situation. He didn't have time to pull it out before the glaive was in reach, anyway.
"Find the Lionsguard!" he ordered the bird, and he punched the rest of the wood plank supporting Mindy. The bird gave one final cry as it fell down to the chasm, covered by the rising mist.
Monica stared at the hole for several moments, and then turned to him in horror. "What have you-?!"
"There's deep water under there, and chocobos are naturally buoyant swimmers!" he said quickly, while tugging her arm. "Come on!"
Hearing the servant's voice was enough warning for Ramza. Quickly, he held Monica bridal style (like Saber did for him before) and utilized an Aero spell to jump farther than normal.
Looking back to gauge the distance, he saw a surge of mana coming from the falls. He kept watching, just in time to see a blue spearman jump through an opening through the rocks. Immediately after, a bright white beam shot out from where the man just escaped, powering straight through over the bridge. It was almost a shame that it didn't hit Berserker; if the blast was at the right positioning for his head, if might have toppled the giant over the bridge.
Now it all hinders on Caster.
By luck, the two of them caught back up with the riders standing a good distance away from the bridge. Allowing Monica out of his hands, Ramza almost immediately collapsed to the ground heaving, much to the surprise by the others.
"Are you alright, Ramza?" Agrias asked.
"I'm fine," he wheezed as he reached in his cloak. "I've just exhausted the last of my magical energies back there. Need an ether."
"Already low on mana?" Caster frowned. "That's hardly a befitting thing for a master to do, especially in battle."
"Well, considering he evaded Berserker, scried Ovelia's location, and summoned a Moogle for over a minute, I'd be exhausted too." Monica reasoned.
The magician servant turned to the chemist with a flat expression. "What?"
"Later," the magus said. "Stop Berserker,"
Caster glared back at him for a moment longer. "Don't think you're off the hook because you're my master's friend."
Berserker marched closer, somewhat more eager at stationary prey. Everyone tensed themselves to guard, while Caster drew out a ruby pendent. With a few spoken words (in a tone and language they've never heard before), a circle glowed under Berserker's enlarged foot before exploding.
Ovelia sat and stared between the ensuing sword fights happening across the riverbed. Two knights wished for her death. Two of the Lionsguard fought to protect her. One was attempting to kidnap her and was fighting her current kidnapper… or was he really a rescuer?
She didn't quite know anymore, but she never expected the world to be so different and scary when leaving Simon's church.
In his fight, Algus was slowly losing his patience. He watched as yet another fired arrow bounced off the Holy Knight's shield. He had believed he had the advantage with his crossbow, but the annoying sword arts were warring down on his stamina. Stasis Sword, Split Punch, Crush Punch… just one misstep and any of those curses would be the end of him.
He kept trying to advance towards him, as ironic as it was, because he planned to use his own sword skills sealed within his remaining katanas. Delita was no fool though, and kept his distance just beyond reach when he swung his sword to empty ground. He had more mana to spare, who wasn't straining to keep Mad Enhancement on his servant like Algus was, and tried the use to his Holy Sword abilities like a second nature.
But he was still a commoner, and kept his repertoire too limited.
Taking a chance, Algus timed when Delita's sword art would strike… and Teleported away. The samurai reappeared behind him and reached for his Asura again.
"Spirit Blade! Deconstruct!"
The drawing of the sword once more brought a flurry of sparks out around him, striking out with seemingly invisible blades around Algus. The blade itself shined dark red, trembling in his hand as if ready to burst. Instead of holding it above to spread the effect like last time, he quickly thrust it backward to stab the knight. The red glow of the sword quickly vanished yet allowed it to effortlessly shatter the armor to dust.
He was pleased to hear three distinct sounds: a squelching sound of steel meeting flesh, a startled gagged gasp, and water plopping of a dropped sword.
"I learned a lot in my time with Ramza, you know," he whispered. "The best lesson, I believe, is that you can never have too many skills. How he managed to use armor breaking arrows at the Zekilus outpost still amazes me." He then twisted the blade sideways to further wound the knight. "I never stopped training on my knighthood, even when I discovered I had true magic talent after that blasted day of Zeakden."
Ovelia wasn't sure how or why, but she lost her voice watching Delita's body fall after being struck. He wasn't… dead, was he? Please let it not be true. There had to be something she could do to help!
Wait… the spell of her heritage!
Unaware of the princess' frantic casting, stood over Delita's hunched form and turned his hand over to reveal his own Command Spells: designed with three thick lines shaped like arrows and arranged form a triangle. "You may have a new fancy title, Delita, but you didn't naturally obtain that. Only those born and bred to higher status can obtain what is rightfully theirs. And even then it takes years to refine it into true mastery."
Ignoring the still silent knight, he held his katana up high for an overhead slash. "Years you don't have. Goodbye, Delita."
It was at that moment Ovelia finished chanting. "M-Barrier!"
Unseen by the fighters, the magic built in the princess expelled itself in a force that almost knocked her back. A rainbow of light circled around Delita and in a short instant glowed. Algus hesitated in his intended deathblow, confused of what the light it was he just saw.
It was enough of an opening.
Suddenly invigorated, Delita snapped upright and roll away, picking up his sword in the process. Just as Algus focused to teleport again, the knight jumped again at a speed unlike before. Dammit! He's hasted!
A quickened body couldn't save him from a clean blow though. Algus kept one blade steady to block the sword while he reached for his crossbow for a pointblank shot. To his surprise, it didn't dig deep as he hoped.
Then he noticed the aura. Twin layers of protective shielding, one for Protect and another Shell: physical and magical respectively. And even as he stared, the current bolt wound was recovering along with his older ones.
Regen too?! He might as well be given Reraise as well! How did-?!
In sudden realization, he turned to the now approaching geomancer and white mage, helping Ovelia to her feet. His eyes caught glances with the suddenly relaxed princess, who was instead watching his opponent with faraway eyes.
Algus drew his crossbow to fire at her skull. "You little-!"
That was as far as he got before he gasped in breath again. Not from one of Delita's attacks, but from his connection with Berserker. Algus was certain he had enough mana to sustain his Mad Enhancement for a skirmish, but Delita's interference was doing him no favors. Surely the commoner's servant couldn't have gotten the edge on him, could he?
Algus would have thought he had the edge himself had not Delita stabbed him back in kind.
After the explosion, Ramza unconsciously tuned in to the elements around him. All around them were small energy panels working like mines spaced out all over the plateau. One alone was enough to cause the area to shake and Berserker was nowhere to be seen with the dust cloud left behind.
"This was your trap?" he blanched. Personally, the Beoulve found it to be overkill and downright scary.
"I had planned to use my jewel mines to cut off the route from Igros remotely, since there were a lot more pursuers after us than expect. But in comparison to an enemy servant, it seemed like a waste to do just that."
"He's still alive, isn't he?"
"Possibly," Caster frowned. "But even with a Magic Resistance skill, he would to have felt that one."
Sure enough when the smoke finally cleared, the exotic-armored giant was revealed to be crouching on one knee forcibly blown back by the explosion. It was a short pause as Berserker glared at Ramza and the women before resuming his march at a faster pace.
Caster immediately activated her rune mines again, but Berserker learned from mistakes despite being mindless. Any rune that would set off in his path, the servant would either dash ahead of it or dash to the side. The group was forced to retreat before the halberd struck down, and even then they were blown back by the force of the attack.
"And I thought Saber was strong," Agrias grunted, helping Alice up. "We might need her if Caster can't stop Berseker-"
"I know I can stop Berserker!" Caster cried from her position, firing Gandrs to slow him down. "But the timing on the runes is hard even for my servant reflexes. If I waste them all, we're dead."
Ramza took another moment to stare on the ground intently. "Not if you use them all at once," he suggested.
The red-robed servant snapped at the magus beside her. "That's... suicide," she mumbled mystified. She looked distracted by something, but Ramza didn't have time to debate what. She had a point anyway.
Berserker barely survived one blast, and even if a chain reaction would catch him, it would do the same for the rest of them. If only there was some way to cushion and survive the explosion.
"Now what are you doing?!" Caster demanded. First the magus suggests a suicide coup, now he's casting magic? He wasn't planning on detonating them himself?
Caster bit a curse at herself for being distracted. Berseker managed to skewer one of the Lionsguard on his halberd, but it was by some miracle that she was still conscious. Her body was flicked off the weapon and landed in a heap. Her commander struck with her remaining prana-filled sword arts with burning vengeance while Monica tended to the fallen knight with whatever medicine she had at hand.
Berserker would have ended them all had not for Caster firing again. Her spells were potent enough to actually stun the servant, but not hurt it. For the obvious reasons, this was going a tad better than her fight with Heracles.
Lights surged around Ramza at the height of his casting, fanning out from his position in all directions. They continued on, washing over the other fighters. With the exception of Berserker, anyone that was touched by the light suddenly glowed with a myriad of blessings and protective layers.
Caster stared at her hands dimly, gauging the effect. How did the Beoulve magus accomplish this?
"Caster, detonate the mines," Ramza said. "All of them."
Even if she wasn't certain of what he did, she knew his intention. "This spell might not be enough to protect us!"
"It will. Trust me!"
It was all she could afford to do, less Berserker and Algus win. The giant was already knocking down Agrias and ready to kill Monica.
This won't end well for anyone, but it was "do or die" time.
Caster focused on her conjuring gem one more, connecting all still inactive runes alit below them, and having the plateau glow dark red. One word was needed to light the fuse. "Interglot!"
For the briefest moments, the earth cracked below them. And then there was white.
"Ifreann na Fola," Lancer said aloud, wading at the bottom of the river. "That girl took more prana outta me than I thought. She might be my biggest competitor in this war yet."
The blue-clad servant avoided the force of the Everlake Shield attack, but still suffered from its aftermath. Using a Noble Phantasm of any kind needed prana to activate. The attacks by his spear were instant and quick, securing a victory should it be used.
But that shield… it held the Phantasm's effect for more than an instant kill should, and drew out his own reserves, because she delayed and drained the killing phantasm. As it was now, he was too weak to fight any of the other servants around here, even Caster. The human warriors on the other hand, they might provide some fun. He was just weak enough to be given a challenge but not enough that he could kill someone if he was serious.
That being said, if one of the Servants got the drop on him, he'd have to leave on the spot.
He caught sight of a recently finished skirmish: two female knights panting and standing over the bodies of two male ones. They were fit and well trained, almost ready to harness their bodies to hand-to-hand combat. He certainly wouldn't might a fight with those two.
Before Lancer could decide the proper approach against his next fighters, a big, seemingly fat yellow bird, like the rejected mixed-breed of a chicken and a dodo, swam next to him with a curious look in its eye. Lancer had never seen or heard of such a bird in his previous life or during Fuyuki's time. Apparently it's a native creature of the future land of Ivalice, called a chocobo.
A moment passed, and as if sensing his gauging hostility, the chocobo pulled its head back and pecked at him. Or at least it would have, if not for Lancer swinging his spear across the bird's face.
"Kweeeh!" it cried before splashing down. That got both of the knight's attention, aghast at the bird's wound.
One of them glared daggers at Lancer, her sword ready. "Fiona, go find the princess."
"I'll handle this one. He has some nerve striking one of our chocobos."
Lancer smirked, crouching low with his spear along his arms. "I'd be more than happy to fight both of you, but I'll take what I can get." He didn't feel the need to tell the girl his class yet. He wanted her at her best, without any doubt hindering her.
With another worried look, the Fiona knight left deeper into the riverbed, allowing servant and knight to duel in solitude. The following minute was tense as both combatants stared down.
Lavian made the first move: a screaming charge with her sword tucked back for a thrust. Lancer stepped away at the last moment, twirling his spear for momentum as he did before slamming it down. The knight quickly swung the outstretched blade to the side to deflect it, and then thrust again. Any other spear user would have received a wound here because of their outstretched weapon, but Lancer's speed was bordering on superhuman, and he quickly bent away from the sword.
Gritting her teeth, Lavian drew her sword overhead and cried "Speed Break!" before swinging down. Perhaps in his overconfidence, Lancer allow himself to get hit or over-thought the range of her sword a moment too late, but she managed to knick his shoulder blade.
Immediately he felt some weight in his nimble body, sapping his stamina. It was nowhere near power as Caster's curse spell, and his magic resistance pretty much dissolved it as soon as it came, but he still felt it.
In the woman's confidence, she channeled her sword strike again with momentum and adrenaline guiding her. "Speed Break!"
The sword was soon deep in the water, further and deeper than the knight had intended to swing. It was beyond her sense of comprehension, but Lancer dodged attack again and struck the back of her blade with his spear. The added force threw her off guard, and before she could pull her sword back, the lancer planted his foot down on it.
"You got spunk, lass," he grinned. "But I'm not going to let that same trick hit me twice. I let that happen just to see what it felt like."
Lavian only glared at the blue haired spearman, struggling to pull her weapon out. When that didn't work, she let go and threw a punch at his face.
He blinked, more surprised at the action. The grin grew and he stared her down. "My turn." And he decked her abdomen, knocking her out.
He really should kill her, but the grail rules didn't really state that witnesses had to be killed off this time. War time was getting tense too, so it would be more reason than not to end her. The only thing stopping him was he sort of respected her drive.
The servant paled, spotting Saber descending from above with her sword aimed down to skewer him. He barely managed to jump away from her spike strike, slightly covered by the splash of her entry.
"Sorry, Saber," Lancer called out on his retreating run. "But we'll have to pick this fight up later."
In a few jumps and leaps, the servant was clear out of the area, allowing Saber a sigh of relief. The servant still lived, but at least Lavian and the chocobo weren't in danger anymore.
She just finished checking their vital signs when an explosion went off from above. Saber had chased Lancer to defeat him, but in her rush to finish the fight, she barely considered the danger of the one person she needed alive to even be here. Her master.
Algus couldn't believe this. Everything had gone so smoothly and now it was all falling apart! Because of the princess' betrayal, he was losing to commoners! Delita on his own was a bother, but Luke and Claire, who were now a geomancer and priest respectively, joined in their vengeance. It took all his skills just to keep them off his back and gather minimal injuries instead of lethal ones. Damn them all!
He was considering bringing Berserker to him to make sure they understood pain when a loud explosion went off from above. Algus felt a searing pain not unlike Zeakden flare through his body in a painful spasm that forced him to his knees.
This pain, coming from the link to Berserker… was Delita's servant really this powerful? What had the commoner been doing this past year?
There was another bother: in the mind's eye of his Servant, he saw flashes of his victims and survivors, but the one that stuck out most was a blond haired mage with eyes of bronze. Ramza.
Again the Beoulve traitor drew his sword to him, through his own servant. If there was any consolation, he only got himself killed in the explosion. If that wasn't justice, it was at the very least irony.
"You win the day, Delita," Algus scowled. "But I'll win the War."
He reached for a stone that the Marquis gave him, made specifically to channel the potential of teleporting, and far extend the limited reaches. Stones such as these were rare though, and could only last so many uses before breaking. They were no different from katana blades, in that they had to be used sparingly and plan the right moment.
This emergency was such a moment.
"Berserker, we're retreating for now," he said aloud through his mental link. With the stone firmly in his grip, he channeled for another teleport.
"No!" Delita sprang forward, thrust to pierce his heart. He was a moment too late, as he only struck air.
Luke immediately looked. "Where is he? He couldn't have gotten far!"
Delita shook his head slowly. "He can, Luke. He's gone… for now."
"Then at least Berseker is gone, too," Claire noted. "We should regroup with Monica and Caster."
Delita nodded, walking over to help the princess to her feet. Nearly everything went wrong in this battle, and was so dangerously close to being the end for everyone here. He knew not of what happened to Caster, other than that she was still alive.
He knew he would have to thank Ramza for this, but he was still debating on the most important question. Would he be his greatest ally, or his most dangerous enemy?
A/N: A year. Took me almost a whole year to write this down, and I KNOW it still needs some refining. As for why this took forever, I came up with another story called "Fate Reach Out". Its by far my most popular story, which is almost a shame concerning I had high hopes for this one when first conceived. At first the idea of FRO came up as a random Persona 4 and Fate/Stay Night crossover, but the guys at the Spacebattles forum instantly took interest and I decided to write it up for NaNoWriMo when it happened.
That said, this battle was pretty much chaotic in context as it was typing it down. There's still a bit left over in the fight, but again, it's long already so I'll end it here. I might take to shorter chapters though, for convenience's sake. The wait for the next chapters might be shorter too, and hopefully I'll find a beta to clean this up. I had one for a while but he seems so busy now that I figured it was best for his sake to be dropped. If anyone knows a good beta, feel free to recommend someone.
Hoping for more fun stuff to come,
Vegeta the 3rd