Sword Art Online: Seraphim of the Starless Knight

I am the Embodiment of Excaliber the Sword of End, The Black Flames of Sin is my Spirit

With these Tainted Hands I have Unleashed a Thousand Judgments

These Burdened Golden Wings of Mine Feared by Thousands, Loved by Few

Nevertheless my Heart of Scales is Satisfied

My name is Kirito Synthesis Zero,

Seraphim of the Starless Knight

Summary: He is the knight clad in armor reminiscent of the starless night, his golden wings shimmering as he leads his band of angels. He is never seen without his black-haired angel, she who wields the dual swords that slice through darkness. He is the strongest: the Seraphim of the Starless Knight. KiritoxYuukixMulti

Okay some of you (if not all of you) may have noticed that I have (once again) changed the name, hopefully for good this time.

Sorry if I seem a bit indecisive on the name, but after looking at the color illustration of the eleventh light novel of Alice in all her integrity Knight glory, I suddenly had a vision of Kirito as an Integrity Knight clad in darkness.

Originally I wanted to just change the word prince in the title to Knight, but that seemed too simple or lame. So I changed it to Seraphim of the Starless Knight in reference to how a starless night where it is full of darkness and how Kirito is now going to be knightish along with the wings. Look at my cover photo that I used for this fanfic and you will see.

Anyways just thought you should know, if you were going to review about how indecisive I am…

For those of you who are wondering, no I am not abandoning Gun Gale Online: Cerberus, it's just that four more unique skills that haven't been introduced in SAO were released by Kawahara Reki on the SAO wiki. And I couldn't get this idea out of my head, plus sometimes writing the same fics with the same setting gets tiring so I will probably be rotating between this and GGO: Cerberus.

Now Beta-read by Sephoriya

I probably should've have mentioned this in the previous chapter but Yuuki is a canon character that comes from the seventh light novel, Mother's Rosario…

[SPOILER!]…she died due to her AIDs and HIV…I want to cry so badly now

Disclaimer: I do now own Sword Art Online, Kawahara Reki does.

Answers/Replies

WhizkidHV-…Whiz, that was an accident…-.-

Nanaya88-ah sorry about that, I was just looking for a sword skill to use and so I forgot about it, btw I fixed it now

Kuronoki-well he would curb-stomp a lot of people, but not everyone, in fact the only reason he won was because of his martial arts background. When the other players play the game more they will be more trained so it will be more even, although Kirito will still be above them.

Evelsaint93- what should be a unique skill?

Alkner-well sorry about having too many fics, it's just that I can't help myself. But my Highschool DxD was just a impulse I had as I already mentioned, and my Naruto ones are on hiatus…well now I'm mostly focusing on both my SAO fanfics

Dechirures-yes

Mad Random Writer-sorry about that ahahaha…I think much faster than my hand can write… anyways I'm not killing off Heathcliff and I don't to give him that kind of trauma just yet

DarkMegaSF-Yes I did, mostly because I was unsatisfied with the previous one and I couldn't think of a better one yet

N0mster-well I will be going with word of god that Yuuki will have a faster reaction than Kirito, but not by much

ToumaFF-yeah, I moved the author notes to the end or the beginning or the end

And thank you to those who reviewed!

Talk- "Kirito-kun"

Thought- 'Kyaa!?'

Game Terms-«Sword of Oblivion Excaliber»

System Announcement- -congratulations-

Passive Skills: Divinity

Chapter 2: Shooting Star: Duet of Black and White

"HA!" A high pitched yell rang through the air as the «Black Scarlet» sliced the random kobold monsterin half, and not a moment later it dispersed into millions of pieces.

Yuuki hid a frown as she saw the polygons disappear into a million pieces of beautiful light. It was far too clean and beautiful for her tastes.

It made her wonder if the creator, Kayaba Akihiko, purposely made death so beautiful. As she thought about the monster's death her mind began to wander towards… darker thoughts…

'I wonder if my death would be…beautiful…at the very least beautiful enough that Kirito-kun won't turn his eyes away from me. Or would it be so utterly disgusting that Kirito-kun couldn't bear to look at me in death?'

The black haired girl scrunched her eyes as she lightly slapped her cheeks and then shook her head trying to rid those depressing thoughts out of her mind

Swoosh

Yuuki quickly turned around as she heard the sound of a sword slicing the air.

'Crap, I was too focused on my thoughts!' Yuuki berated herself as she lifted her sword up in a defensive position to block whatever incoming attacks were coming at her from the monster that had snuck upon her while she was deep in thought.

Only to see empty space in front of her, no monster at all

'Weird. I swore I heard the sound of a sword moving through the air.' Yuuki thought in confusion to herself.

Then she heard it, well more like the sound of a sword slashing through air meaninglessly and then a monster's shriek. The same shriek she heard when she injured the kobold that she had just killed.

Curious as she did not see any group coming here to battle the monsters, she crept closer to the sound, careful not to draw attention herself.

As she crept closer, Yuuki began to see the two figures that were engaged in combat in an ongoing battle.

She gasped.

The monster engaged in combat was an elite kobold mook, just like the one she had defeated mere minutes ago.

The one that made her gasp was a figure in a dull red cloak. He was taller than her, possibly as tall as Kirito if not a bit shorter.

Speaking of Kirito, he had been training in the lesser known dungeons on the first floor. Something about a solo quest he had to take. That was why she was in the lower dungeons, well lower leveled dungeon than the one that she and Kirito would trainin together.

Well back to the present.

The cloaked figure moved deftly as he dodged all the kobold's attempts of attack with its large sword. Yuuki was amazed, the figure moved with gracefulness that she had never seen before, it almost reminded her of Kirito, except Kirito's movements were refinedwith the skills that he had learned through his kendo and karate training and he was never graceful, just refined.

Then Yuuki noticed his sword, it was a rapier, a weapon of elegance and grace of the utmost caliber. But it was a weapon considered too weak and girly for most males to equip.

Although Yuuki had to disagree with the weak comment as she saw the rapier of the user glow signifying the execution of a sword skill known as «Linear».

It was so quick, shining, brilliant, and beautiful…just like a shooting star.

Yuuki had seen numerous shooting stars in her life. The first one was brilliant white with a blue hue, on that star she wished to be cured.

It never came true.

Then the second one came, the frail girl made the same wish.

It still never came true.

Then she saw her third one, she made another wish.

She lost hope in wishing to be cured after that.

One by one Yuuki saw several more of them, but each one was duller than the last. Someone else might've called it luck at the unnatural number shooting stars she saw. But to her it was mocking her, mocking Yuuki of her inevitable death.

What was worse was that the last one she saw was just before she was ostracized.

That was why, Yuuki gasped as shesaw a shootingstar/streak (pick one?) at its full brilliance just like the first time she saw it.

"Krahhh!" The monster wailed as its inevitable death came along with its declining health bar.

Another beautiful death as Yuuki would put it.

Yuuki stared at the red cloaked player in turmoil, on one hand she wanted to leave and do nothing with the player that reminded Yuuki of the hopelessness of her incurable condition, but on the other hand she wanted to talk to the person that reminded her of how brilliant a shooting star was.

Unable to decide, Yuuki opted to silently follow the player as he made hisway deeper into the dungeon.

Yuuki watched as the player traversed throughout (saying deeper again sounds awkward) the dungeon.

Soon one minute passed.

Five minutes passed.

Ten minutes passed.

Thirty minutes passed.

And finally one hour passed give or take a few minutes.

It didn't matter to Yuuki how long she followed the rapier user, in fact she didn't keep track of the time any longer. The rapier user intrigued her.

His moves were as Yuuki observed earlier graceful, but she now also noticed another thing about him.

All his moves were desperate.

Yes he moved with grace; however he held no regard for his charging in and having no concern for his health, only drinking «potions» to heal his health after fighting.

He always charged; never backing down, as if the word escape was of no concern for him…or it never existed in his mind. All he did was charge, charge, and charge.

Another major problem was the «over kill» he constantly performed. They were inefficient, and at the wrong place and wrong time, it could kill him.

But still Yuuki didn't know whether to approach him or not.

But fate apparently chose to decide for her.

In the midst of combat the rapier user suddenly fell down unconsciousness. Yuuki who was watching nearby couldn't ignore it; she couldn't simply ignore a helpless person.

"Hrah!" With small shout she charged at the «Kobold Sentinel» that was momentarily stunned by the Linear the rapier user just used right before he fainted. It was quite lucky for him, because had he not done so the kobold would have indubitably killed him given the chance, as the rapier user only had about half of his health bar left and he was mainly an «AGI» type.

In «Sword Art Online» when you level up you get a number of ability stat points that you can use to put into either AGI or STR. And depending on those stats you can equip certain armor and weapons.

Unfortunately there was a trade off for each one, if you put all your points into AGI you will fast and strike numerous critical hits depending on your own skill and how your AGI is, however it left you with a weak defense that would let monsters kill you within a few moves granted the monster was of suitable level.

STR was the opposite. If you place all your points into strength, you were strong and didn't need critical hits to deal massive damage, however it also meant that you were slow and more prone to hits where an AGI type could easily dodge attacks.

Both sides had their advantages and disadvantages,which was why Yuuki chose to be a «hybrid» type player. A hybrid type player levels both AGI and STR stats to make a balanced build. Yuuki had placed fifty percent of her ability points into each.

CLANG

Sparks flew as Yuuki unleashed her charged sword skill in a vertical upper slash against the kobold's own downward slash, resulting into a repelling force that made both swords bounce backwards.

However, unluckily for the kobold, Yuuki was already expecting that, and so as her hand was flung back she positioned herself so that another sword skill was evoked.

Black Scarlet shone/gleamed a deep blue color as it flashed forward, carving a three pointed star into the kobold's body.

The kobold that was already on the verge of death disappeared into millions of brilliant polygons thanks to the deletion of the rest of its health by «Trinity Strike».

With a sigh of relief, Yuuki sheathed her sword with an audible sound as she turned to look at the rapier user.

Curious at what he was hiding under the cloak, Yuuki slowly brought her hands closer to the hood but jerked it back at the last moment.

'Come on Yuuki! This isn't the time to wonder what's under the hood; you have to get him to a safe area first!' Yuuki berated herself mentally once again.

Yuuki hoisted the rapier user onto her back as she gave him a piggy back ride. Now that Yuuki was actually touching the rapier user she noticed the he was unusually light and thin.

Too thin and light, hell Kazuto was the thinnest male Yuuki knew and the rapier user was even thinner! Yuuki was quite sure now that the rapier user was female.

Questions flew through her mind as Yuuki wondered why a single lone female would be out here alone.

It wasn't that much longer until Yuuki exited the maze and arrived at a nice circular clearing in the forest dungeon outside of the labyrinth that they had just exited from.

Yuuki gently set the female she was carrying down with her back against the tree as she sat on a rock facing opposite of the unconscious rapier user.

Now Yuuki's curiosity was back.

She had always wanted a female friend that she could relate to. Don't get her wrong, Yuuki liked Lisbeth as a friend, but sometimes she wanted someone who understood her more and fought with her on the frontlines.

Times passed and finally Yuuki couldn't take it anymore as the curiosity of the stranger's face passed her limits.

Slowly Yuuki walked towards her and kneeled down in front of her. With a one of her hands, she slowly touched the top of her hood as if afraid of waking the sleeping girl, not that it was possible anyways, and slowly Yuuki moved the hood off.

Yuuki gasped.

The girl before her was beautiful. Like a princess. Her hazelnut hair was gorgeous, her face a perfectly heart shaped, her lips were lush, and so much more.

'She looks like sleeping beauty from one of my bedtime stories'

Then the beautiful girl's face twitched for a few moments before calming down again into a serene look, but suddenly her eyes snapped open as she jumped up with her hand on her rapier handle looking around with suspicion.

Suspicion quickly turned into confusion, no doubt wondering why she was not in the labyrinth, but instead in safe area in a lush green forest.

Then she looked down to see Yuukiwith a wide eyed innocent expression of surprise.

An awkward silence soon settled in.

Then Yuuki gave a bright smile as she stood up.

"Hi, my name is Yuuki!" The Black Princess said as she offered her hand towards the female rapier user.

The female rapier user looked at the hand and then at Yuuki's face before she decided to shake hands. "I'm Asuna."

Yuuki inwardly frowned, Asuna's reply was hollow as if she didn't want to live anymore…it reminded Yuuki of the time before she met Kirito.

"Are you hungry?" Yuuki asked trying to find something to talk silent rapier user nodded as both of them sat down, with Asuna following Yuuki's example.

Asuna stay stilled for a moment before she nodded. With a movement of her hands she opened her «inventory» window intent on getting the plain bread she brought. But just before she could materialize her food, Yuuki's hand holding a black-ish bread with a slice of meat in it appeared in front of her face.

"?" Asuna looked the sandwich in confusion.

"Here take it; you're hungry are you not?" Yuuki asked after she finished swallowing her mouthful of food that she had in her mouth.

Asuna nodded as she took the bread and took a bite out of it. Her eyes widened at the taste. After eating nothing but plain, stale bread since the beginning of the game the sandwich in her hands waslike the foods of the gods' to her.

Asuna quickly inhaled the sandwich into her stomach in an unsightly manner as Yuuki gaped at the girl called Asuna.

After she had finished the sandwich looked up to see Yuuki staring at her with her petite mouth agape at what she had just witnessed.

Naturally Asuna blushed hoping that her hood would cover it, that's when she realized her hood was off. She panicked at first, but calm down soon after.

"Why did you save me?"

"Huh what do you mean? It's natural to save someone in need after all." Yuuki asked in confusion after recovering from her shock.

"What's the point? Everyone is going to die soon enough. It's just a matter of time." Asuna said still talking in her hollow like voice.

"Is that why you were out here all by yourself?" Yuuki asked not even bothering to hide her frown this time.

Asuna stayed silent as if contemplating on whether to tell the black haired girl in front of her. "Yes, I decided that if I was going to die, I am going to die fighting and notas some scared little girl hiding inside a hotel."

"Ano…how long have you been out here?" Yuuki asked with a rising suspicion in her heart.

"About three days." Asuna said plainly.

"T-Three days!? What about shelter, food and what if your weapon breaks!?" Yuuki asked her voice laced with surprise.

"I bought a lot of potions and food. I also have three rapiers in my inventory for spare." Asuna replied.

"B-but that's suicidal!? Don't you want live!? Yuuki half shouted at the girl before her.

"WHAT'S THE POINT EVERYONE IS GOING TO DIE!? IT'S ALREADY BEEN A MONTH A THE FIRS FLOOR HASN'T EVEN BEEN CLEARED YET AND ALREADY HUNDREDS HAVE ALREADY DIED! IT'S BETTER TO JUST GIVE UP RIGHT NOW!"

SLAP!

Asuna's eyes widened in surprise as the black haired girl suddenly slapped her.

Yuuki on the other hand was also surprised but for another reason. When Asuna said give up, something inside her just snapped.

"Hey do you want to listen to a story?" Yuuki suddenly asked in a reserved tone as she sat down and hugged her legs close to her chest.

Asuna realizing she may have gone too far complied as she too sat down with her back against the tree.

"Once upon a time,

There was a little girl who had AIDs and HIV; all the doctors said that she wouldn't survive past her tenth birthday

But the little never gave up and lived past her tenth birthday, but…

Her condition worsened

Why?

Because all her classmates found out and began to distance themselves and began to bully that girl

That little girl realized just how weak she was and lost all her strength and gave up"

Asuna gave a silent gasp as she heard Yuuki tell her story, she was quite sure she knew who the girl was judging by the detached and sad expression on Yuuki's face. But Yuuki took no notice of the gasp as she was immersed in her own story.

"One day the doctor said that the little girl wouldn't make it past another month…"

To Asuna's surprise Yuuki suddenly gave a small smile.

"Then that little girl met him

A young boy around her age

A loner

A strong person

That little girl who had lost faith in wishing and only relied on her own strength, began to draw hope from that boy

Ever since that day the black haired girl has never given up and strived to live no matter what

Even in this hopeless situation"

Yuuki then stared at Asuna directly in the eye.

"That's why if such a weak girl found enough strength to not give up, you shouldn't either Asuna-san"

Asuna just stared at the girl before her; she felt a disgusting feeling rise up from her stomach as she watched the brave girl called Yuuki.

Even against all odds she survived and never gave up, while she herself gave up immediately.

Asuna felt shameful.

"That girl was you right Yuuki-san?" Asuna asked although she already she already knew the answer.

"Yes… I am that girl…" Yuuki replied.

Silence once again settled in between them as both of them were deep in thought.

"Hey, there's going to be a large gathering of players to discuss how to defeat the first floor's boss. Want to come?" Yuuki suddenly asked Asuna.

"A gathering of players?" Asuna said with confusion in her voice.

"Yeah,a meeting of the top strongest players, to defeat the first boss and clear the game." Yuuki said. "If we defeat the boss will you promise me not to give up?"

Asuna seemed to hesitate at Yuuki's proposal but a sudden fire erupted from the dying embers within her hazelnut colored eyes. "Yes." Asuna said with resolution.

Yuuki gave her usual bright and cheery smile at Asuna's answer as she suddenly stood up and grabbed Asuna's hands with her own. "Good! But we better hurry the meeting starts in less than an hour!" said Yuuki as she began to drag Asuna through the dungeon with haste.

-Fountain Square of «Tolbana Village»-

"Yuuki." A smooth and confident voice said from behind her.

"Kirito-kun!" Yuuki said as she turned around to see the other half of the Black Duo behind her.

Originally both Yuuki and Kirito weren't planning on appearing at the meeting, but Yuuki decided to change their decision at the last minute. She had sent a message to Kirito as she dragged Asuna through the dungeon.

"Ah and this is Asuna-san!" Yuuki said as she gestured toward the said girl.

"Hello, my name is Kirito." The black haired male simply said as he looked at Asuna. "Yuuki, why did you suddenly decide to come to the meeting?"

Yuuki had a sheepish look on her face as she clapped her hands in front of her and bowed a bit to Kirito. "Sorry! I just suddenly wanted to beat the boss!"

It was obvious to Kirito that Yuuki was withholding information from him, probably something to do with the beautiful rapier user. Kirito sighed as he patted Yuuki on her head.

"Fine, you don't have to tell me if you don't want to"

Yuuki blushed. She wasn't used to keeping secrets from Kirito, she almost always told Kirito everything, but sometimes some things were better off not said, such as Yuuki's proposal to Asuna.

If Kirito had known aboutit, he would have probably chewed Yuuki out about unnecessarily risking her life for someone else.

After that it wasn't much longer until the meeting began.

"Today, thank you for heeding my summons! Some people here know me, but I will again introduce myself! I am «Diabel», and my class is «Knight»!"

With that, the people around the fountain burst out with whistles and clapping, mixed with various calls like 'You meant to say «Hero» right!' flew through the air.

For SAO, the job class did not exist in the system. Each player was given a number of «Skill Slots», and could freely select from different skills and set them for training. For example, people with manufacturing or trade type skills in their main slot could be called a «Smith», «Seamstress», «Cook», or other such job titles —however, neither Kirito nor Yuuki have limited knowledge about the «Knight» and «Hero» classes, having not heard of them before.

"But, no matter what kind of class a person calls himself, it is his own freedom."

Saying this, the man named Diabel was wearing bronze armor on his chest, shoulders, arms and shins, with a large long sword on his waist to the left, and a kite shield on his back. You could say that was the armament befitting Knight.

The player known as Diabel continued his speech, talking about how his group had found the room to the first floor's boss.

Naturally there was a large amount of shock, as no one had found the boss' room yet. Even Kirito and Yuuki hadn't found the boss' room, although that was where they had been killing the monsters on the twentieth floor of the Aincrad's first floor maze.

"-and tomorrow with everyone's cooperation we defeat the first floor boss and show everyone that conquering the tower is not impossible!"

A roar of approval erupted from the crowd at Diabel's charismatic speech. Even Kirito himself felt a bit inspired, although the amount was minuscule.

"Wait a minute, knight-san!"

At that moment, a low voice flowed out.

The cheering immediately stopped, and the front of the crowd split into two. At the center of the emptied space was a somewhat short and stockily built man. From Kirito's position, he could only see a somewhat large one-handed sword on his back, and some kind of pointed, cactus-styled brown hair.

Taking one step forward, the cactus head growled in a deep, gravelly voice that was the opposite of Diabel's beautiful voice.

"Before that, there is one thing that must be cleared up; otherwise I cannot join you."

Diabel's eyes narrowed for an instant, but soon returned to full smiles and said while beckoning.

"Opinions are certainly very welcome. But, if you are going to speak, you should tell us your name."

"...Hum."

Cactus head gave a huge snort, and then stepped forward. When he reached the fountain, he turned around to face the gathered players.

"I am «Kibaou»."

The cactus head swordsman who introduced himself with a somewhat daring character name looked at all the players in the plaza with beady, but sharp and bright eyes.

"In this group, about 5 or 10 people need to apologize."

"Apologize? To whom?"

The knight that was still standing behind him on the fountain edge, Diabel, raised both hands in question. Without looking at him, Kibaou spat out in hatred.

"Ha, isn't it obvious. To the 2000 now dead people. Those guys had a monopoly on everything, and so 2000 people died in one month! Isn't that right?!"

At that moment, the low buzzing in the forty people audience was cut short; all went silent. What Kibaou insinuated, everyone finally understood.

"—Kibaou-san. Your «those guys» are... the original beta testers, right?"

Diabel with his arms crossed, showed the most stern look up till now as he asked for confirmation.

"Obviously."

Then Kibaou's eyes scanned the crowd before his eyes settled onto the Black Duo.

"You two!" he said as he pointed his fingers at Yuuki and Kirito. "You're beta testers aren't you?"

Yuuki expression was of shock at what they were accused of. Many of the other players gathered also looked at them with some of them narrowing their eyes in suspicion.

Kirito however remained impassive as he stood up and started to walk towards the accuser.

Every single eye was on Kirito's back now as he walked with elegance towards Kibaou. Finally he was face to face to Kibaou.

Kirito was about an inch or two taller than Kibaou, it was not by much but there was enough of a difference between Kirito's eye level and Kibaou's eye level for Kirito to look down at him.

Kibaou flinched as his lackluster eyes met Kirito's luminescent black orbs.

In that single moment Kibaou felt his legs turn into jelly as he felt fear, but…his eyes regain their hatred that was lost just a moment ago and he glared back at Kirito despite the intimidation he felt.

"Kibaou was it? You said that Yuuki and I were beta testers right?" Kirito asked with a surprisingly chilly voice that sent shivers down the spine of those near him.

Kibaou nodded at Kirito's question still standing defiantly against Kirito.

"Then do you have proof?"

That simple question made everyone begin to wonder; at this point everyone was just throwing around their hatred with no proof, although they still were suspicious.

Kibaou opened his mouth to say something but nothing could come out…he absolutely had no proof of his accusations.

"You're far too strong! Unless you're a beta tester you shouldn't be this strong!"

Kirito still had the impassive expression on his face although he did quirk an eyebrow. "So from what you'resaying, everyone who is stronger than average at the moment is a beta tester?"

Kibaou nodded once, confident that he had cornered Kirito this time.

"Then what about everyone else here?" Kirito asked as he spread his arms, and gestured toward everyone.

"Each and everyone one of us gathered here today is stronger than the average player. So are you saying that each and every one of us here is a beta tester Kibaou?"

Kibaou gritted his teeth at Kirito's statement as he felt most of the players glare now. No one, especially the people who weren't beta testers liked to be accused of being one. And Kibaou just accused the majority of the players at the meeting.

"Besides SAO isn't like any other RPGs. As the first VRMMO the player himself has to be fit enough to fight realistic monsters as the one we seen. Not to mention there are variable factors that also makes a player strong. How you move is also a big factor, I'm sure others like me who practice martial arts would notice how much easier it is to fight monster unlike other people who haven't had any training."

Steam was coming out of Kibaou's ears as his face turned bright due to anger as murmurs of agreement were heard throughout the players.

Shing!

Kibaou suddenly unsheathed his word as he brandished it towards Kirito. "Duel me! If I win you'll admit that you're a beta tester!"

"Isn't that hypocritical? After all it would go against your previous statement that the stronger players are the beta testers? Kirito asked with a smirk, "but I'll accept it to amuse you."

With an audible sound Kirito drew his sword, the two handed long sword Evil Blade Noir, with a single hand as he pointed the tip at Kibaou in one fluid movement.

"Urk!" Kibaou let out surprisednoise at Kirito's speed.

Kirito smirked as he let his arm down to his side as he walked a few meters away from Kibaou before turning around. "Well aren't you going to issue the duel? Or perhaps you're scared?"

Kibaou saw red.

It was a blur to him.

Issuing the duel

Waiting for the countdown

He didn't even check if it was a first strike duel

It was all a blur to him as the timer reach zero

"Ha, I'll show you now!" Kibaou yelled as he raised his sword above him activating a sword skill…

It was all too quick for him, one second Kirito was in front of him and then the next he disappeared.

"Wha!?"

"I'm down here." A voice suddenly said below him.

Kibaou looked down to see Kirito crouching in front of him just out of his peripheral vision.

"Shi-"

Kibaou never had a chance to finish his sentence as Kirito swung his sword with unnatural speed and sliced through Kibaou body.

-Winner Kirito-

Cactus head fell onto his knees as he barely processed what had just happened.

Surprisingly someone began to clap and soon everyone was clapping.

Kirito nodded his head thanking them as he began to walk back towards his seat.

However…

"This isn't over yet you brat!" Kibaou whispered harshly so that only he and Kirito could hear it.

Kirito however paid no heed, as he was already used to people to people making empty threats to him ever since he started kendo and defeating sore losers in tournaments.

In the end that was the highlight of meeting, because soon after that the gathered players began to strategize which brought up another thing.

It was «Argo's Strategy Guide», it contradicted Kibaou even more when it refuted that all beta testers ditched the regular players to fend for themselves.

But other than that everything was successful.

The boss raid party was split into in to several parties each consisting of at most six. Since there were already forty-five people most of them split into seven parties with a single party consisting of Asuna, Kirito, and Yuuki to themselves.

After that, they were told to disperse and meet tomorrow at ten o'clock the next day since it was already late.

-Farmer's House-

Kirito sighed as he watched the three girls talk in front of him…

Three girls known as Yuuki, Asuna, and Lisbeth, all of them surprisingly kicked off quite well and were now talking amiably.

…that was why Asuna was also now staying with them…

Thanks to Yuuki…

Kirito sighed as he thought about growing attached to them all and feeling responsible for them in the future, it would be inevitable if they continued to live together.

But…it was nice for Yuuki to talk to other people, especially girls,someone other than himself. Due to her being ostracized, Kirito was the only person she was able to talkto. It was good, but the company of a female was different.

Don't ask him how or why, it just was.

'Well if Yuuki is enjoying herself, I guess I can live with it.'

It was true. Yuuki was laughing a lot more now, it wasn't like that she didn't laugh with him, but it was just that she did most of the talking with himself replying half the time. Kirito himself rarely started a conversation, most of the time he was content to sit next to Yuuki.

Suddenly a window popped up in front of him.

-Player Asuna and Lisbeth is requesting to be your friend-

Kirito looked up to see Yuuki giving him a big smile, he should've known. However he didn't feel that he knew them well enough so…his hand headed towards the no button.

"Kirito-kun!"

Kirito should have never looked, it was his fatal mistake.

Because what he saw was something the Black Prince could never say no to…yes it was the infamous puppy dog eyes of Konno Yuuki.

"Urk!"

With no other choice Kirito pressed the yes button as he buried his face into the palm of his hands.

He distantly heard Yuuki voice her triumph as he sighed wondering why he hadn't attained an immune system geared towards those wretched puppy dog eyes…

Kirito sighed as he stood up from his position from the couch. "Yuuki I'll go to sleep first okay?"

"Sure!" Yuuki replied as Kirito was already on his way as he already knew Yuuki's answer.

-Next Day-

Yuuki talked amiably as she walked between Kirito and Asuna. Mostly it was just her and Asuna talking with the occasional replies from Kirito as they walked alongside the other seven parties.

Of course Yuuki kept her voice to a whisper as there were monsters that were attracted to sounds and it wouldn't do any good for them to attract those monsters and be delayed.

First of allthe fatigued gained from fighting those monsters would weaken them, and they wouldn't be at their best when they confronted the floor to mention that if they fought other monsters they would need to use precious potions.

On a side note just before the boss raid, Kirito and Yuuki had taken Asuna shopping to outfit her with a more fitting set of armor and equipments befitting of her level and skill.

Her hooded cape was now discarded, something that brought her many stares, and her former clothes were replaced by a white themed long sleeved shirt and sailor skirt trimmed in gold. A white breastplate covered her chest along with white armored boots.

However Asuna's favorite change was her rapier. Her previous one-handed rapier was dull grey, a good sword, but horribly weak and unfit for her, which was why Yuuki had requested Lisbeth to forge another sword for the beautiful rapier user.

And Lisbeth did not disappoint, the pink haired black smith had crafted a beautiful white rapier that shined blue whenever the light hit it. «White Azure» that was its name.

It wasn't that much longer until they reached the doors leading to the floor boss, «Illfang the Kobold Lord».

"Remember what your group is assigned to do." Diabel reminded everyone with whisper with his back facing the door and his face towards the raid party.

There was no answer in the form of word, only nods of acceptance.

Creak!

The massive doors made an ominous sound as Diabel opened the doorway to the first floor's most powerful monster.

The room before them was dark but suddenly it lit suddenly with bright lights as the shadow covered figure of Illfang sitting on his thrown came to their view.

Silently Diabel raised his sword high in the air…then he brought down.

"CHARGE!"

Diabel yelled forgoing all stealth as he and the other numerous players charged in.

With a unified roar the players charged towards the two meter high boss.

Suddenly six «Ruin Kobold Sentinels» appeared in front of the group. Without stopping three of the parties, including Kirito's, diverged and blades clashed against halberds.

The main attacking force continued their charge unhindered even as Illfang jumped from his seat and brought up his shield and axe, and began to charge at them.

"Yuuki, Asuna take care of that one!" Kirito commanded them as the group of three split up to meet two kobold sentinels with the other four kobold sentinels being stopped by the other two groups.

Black and White flashes intertwined with each other as they depleted the unfortunate kobold's health bar to zero as Yuuki and Asuna engaged the halberd wielding monster from both sides.

The Ruin Kobold Sentinel never stood a chance.

"Kirito-kun!" Yuuki cried out as her assigned monster disappeared into oblivion in a shower of light.

She looked to where Kirito was fighting intent on helping in case something happened, but to her relief Kirito didn't need her help as she saw Kirito use a sword skill to cut his assigned monster in half, and soon it also disappeared in a shower of lights.

"Don't let your guard down." Kirito said as he regrouped with Yuuki and Asuna as they waited for more kobold sentinel to spawn.

It wasn't in less than a minute later that more kobold sentinel spawned replacing the defeated ones.

With a nod of their heads Kirito, Asuna, and Yuuki split up to their own assigned monsters.

Kirito with one, and Yuuki and Asuna with another one, however it soon changed to all three of them against one each as the two parties assigned to defeat the kobold sentinel watched in awe as the single swordsman and two swordswomen decimated the monsters solo each with their blade composing a requiem of certain death.

All was going fine…until Illfang reached the last of its four health bars. It dropped its heavy buckler shield and axe and reached for the weapon strapped on the back of his waist.

It unsheathed the blade on its waist and held it in two hands. For some reason Kirito had an ominous premonition as he saw the blade that resembled a crude katana.

"Everyone fall back! Group C, follow me and surround him like we planned!" Diabel ordered everyone as he along with five other people surrounded the boss.

It was quite an amazing maneuver if you think about it. To already have planned such a formation when all you knew about the boss was from the booklet a certain informant supplied.

But…Kirito's ominous premonition intensified as he swore he saw Illfang spawn a nasty grin.

Kirito's eyes widened as he saw Illfang's sword start to glow as the group charged. Illfang could use the swords skill that was the only conclusion Kirito could think of.

"GET BACK! ILLFANG CAN USE SWORD SKILLS!" Kirito shouted at them but it was already too late.

With a mighty swipe, most of the players were flung back with their health bar lowering rapidly, but Illfang didn't just stop there,in fact he leapt at one of them.

It was Diabel; Illfang had leapt at the blue haired knight with a ferocious roar.

Kirito moved his feet to intercept the attack but before he could make a single step a black blur passed him, a black blur by the name of Yuuki.

"Yuuki!" Kirito cried out as he felt anxious and worry for the first time in a long time.

Yuuki, who had watched the same scene as Kirito, had suddenly charged forward in order to block Illfang's attack…but as her sword met Illfang's the difference in power was too great and she was flung back crashing into Diabel along the way.

"Gah!" Yuuki cried out as she crashed into the floor, as she pushed herself up with her hands she suddenly heard another roar.

It was Illfang; apparently he decided to kill her and Diabel while they were still down. Yuuki searched frantically for her sword only to find it out of her reach.

It was too far away for her to grab in time for herself, and Illfang was already too close.

"Kirito-kun…" Yuuki whispered as she stared into what she was certain was the harbinger of her death before she closed her eyes waiting for the inevitable.

Ba-bump

Ba-bump

Ba-bump

Ba-bump

'I don't want to die' Yuuki told herself as a single tear slid down her cheek.

"YUUKI!" Yuuki opened her eyes in surprise just in time to see a black shooting star crash into Illfang, and push him off course with a large wound on the monster's stomach.

No…that wasn't a black shooting star…it was Kirito…

Even after he pushed Illfang back Kirito didn't stop as he continued to unleash a mad barrage of slashes and thrusts at the Kobold Lord.

"Asuna!" he called out and within a moment's notice, the white clad rapier user was already there unleashing thrust after thrust at the monster.

Illfang roared in anger as he moved his sword and swung it at Kirito and Asuna.

But it was for naught, as both of them swiftly moved their feet and dodged all his attempts of damaging them.

To Yuuki Kirito and Asuna moved in perfect harmony as they continued their deadly dance with the red skinned monster.

Like a duet between a black shooting star and a white shooting star.

Suddenly Illfang activated a large area sword skill and flung both Kirito and Asuna back. The damage wasn't much, but that wasn't the point of the attack. It was to unbalance them and it did just that.

This time it charged at the downed Kirito, Illfang's sword glowed light blue as he swung it down.

"Hrah!" Yuuki who had already picked herself up from the ground and reclaimed her sword ran over to Kirito just in time to activate her own sword skill to repel Illfang's.

The rest of the players who had broken out of their stupor at Yuuki's battle cry charged forward.

"We'll distract while you guys recover!" A large axe user by the name of Agil told Kirito and Yuuki, as he too charged not long after saying that.

"Come on let's go Yuuki, Asuna." Kirito said as he stood back towards the said black swordswoman and white swordswoman who had reached the two not long after Agil had left.

"Yes!"

"Understood!"

The following fight between Kirito, Yuuki, and Asuna vs. Illfang could only be described as one-sided.

Whatever Illfang used the trio of three would always dodge or parry. Nothing he did could get through their defense.

Black and white flashes appeared at every moment and with it, a wound on the boss' red skin.

"You're finished!" Kirito yelled as his sword, Evil Blade Noir, exuded a crimson glow and pierced Illfang's throat.

-Congratulations!-

-Illfang the Kobold Lord has been defeated-

There was silence at the system's announcement…not long ago it had just been deemed impossible to clear even floor one…yet they had done it with no casualties even with the surprise of the boss using sword skills.

Then someone suddenly yelled in triumph. Soon after more and more people began to join and not long after everyone was cheering, all except three.

"We should go." Kirito simply said as he began to move towards the door that led to the second floor.

Yuuki and Asuna silently followed the leader of the trio.

Unknown to either of them, Yuuki was staring at Kirito's back with her happiest smile yet.

'No wonder none of my wishes came true when I wished upon those shooting stars…

It wasn't that it didn't work

I was just wishing upon the wrong star

My star…is black and invisible in the night sky…

But it has always been with me…

Kirito-kun you are my black shooting star…"

AN: So was it?

Hmm should Sachi appear in the next chapter? I kinda want her and the Black Cats to make an appearance.

Anyways go read WhizkidHV's SAO and Fate/Stay Night oneshot Crossover, Different Paths! It's freaking epic XD!

I don't know what else to say…

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