Hey, I'm back! WITH VENGEANCE!
Thanks Slayer End for betaing, thanks all readers for reading, and Dungeon and Dragons for inspiring this chapter. Enjoy!
Failed a Sanity Check
"This is your last chance to quit, Shirou," the Golden Emperor explained, "There can be no turning back once the general anesthesia starts."
"I'm ready," Shirou replied on the hospital table, "How long will it last?"
"You will be out for a day at least," Saber whispered, "I managed to recreate most of my era's equipment by reshaping matter with my psychic powers, being the only one with the knowledge to oversee the procedure. I hope you understand you run the risk of dying if you reject the organs."
Shirou narrowed his eyes. "I was meant to die years ago, but my father saved my life," he explained, "When he died, I promised I would fulfill his dream of becoming a hero. No risk is too great in the pursuit of this ideal."
Saber inhaled sharply, "The sacrifice of the body is nothing compared to the sacrifice of the soul," the Emperor explained, "You will look human, but you will have transcended this stage of evolution. People will envy and fear you, even as you struggle to protect them. Are you willing to undergo this procedure?"
Understanding Shirou had the resolve to continue, Saber gave him a sharp nod. "The procedure will involve several organ transplants," he warned, "Ideally, they should have been implanted over several years, and the procedure should have started when you were around ten. Since we do not have that time and you are past the ideal age, I will introduce Phases 1 through 6 of the procedure in a single operation. If your body can handle it, we might introduce the rest in the following years as your body matures – if the war lasts that long, that is."
Saber put the anesthesia mask on Shirou's face and started the pledge he had tasked him to memorize, "What is your life?" the Emperor asked.
"My honor is my life."
"What is your fate?"
"My duty is my fate."
"What is your fear?"
"My fear is to fail."
"What is your reward?"
"My salvation is my reward."
"What is your craft?"
"My craft is death…" Shirou whispered, feeling the gas slowly filling his lungs.
"What is your pledge?"
"My pledge," Shirou whispered, his eyes closing, "Is eternal service."
"When you open your eyes again, Shirou Emiya, you will be a champion of mankind." The Emperor sighed, "I hope you will not regret your choice."
The Chaos Gods were beings of great cruelty with the power to reshape reality with their very desire. While they spent most of their time warring on each other, sometimes, Tzeentch brokered meetings between them. Sometimes, they met to plan the destruction of hated's foes; often, they conducted transactions sealing the fate of billions…
"Maximized Fireball for the win!"
… and sometimes, they just played Dungeon and Dragons.
"And once again, I prove why a Drow Wizard with maximized intelligence is the most powerful, minmaxed thing to ever grace the game," Tzeentch gloated.
"Yeah right, without my Barbarian that Paladin would have a made a bitch out of your elven ass!" Khorne swore.
"Speaking of that, can't you just change your character for a day?" Tzeentch hissed, "You've been playing a Barbarian for who knows how long!"
"I'm playing Barbarian because the only other good melee classes are Warrior and Paladin. Both of them are a Barbarian without balls! They're classes for effeminate bitches, like Wizards!"
"Oh really? At least my character isn't a drunk midget!"
"Take that back! AX TO THE FACE!"
"Please calm down," Nurgle pointed out, "I'm beginning to get sick of casting Cure Critical Wounds on you all the freaking time!"
Tzeentch rolled his eyes. How Nurgle, the very embodiment of pestilence and despair, could ever play a Cleric was beyond him. "Yeah, maybe we should calm down… I think Malal is going to summon a Tarasque next session."
"Why did we make him the Game Master in the first place?" Nurgle asked. "He always tries to kill us, both in the game and outside it."
"That makes him perfect for the job," Khorne pointed out.
"Yeah, in the future we'll try with Slaanesh, and let's just say it will be freakish."
"Ah, sorry. It's a funny story involving a future space-time crash, a massive orgy, and the Eldar fucking up big time, figuratively and literally." Tzeentch glanced at Nurgle. "Spoiler warning: You get to marry Isha."
"Really?" The god of pestilence laughed in happiness, releasing toxic miasma with his breath. "I knew infecting her husband with syphilis would make her fall for me!"
"Yes, I'm amazed she didn't fall for your charms sooner," Khorne deadpanned. "Anyway, Tzy, what the fuck are you doing on the material plan?"
"Oh, I'm just doing what I do best: screwing with everyone," the hope god gloated, "It all started with a kitten, which I sent to Zelretch the exact day the postman happened to be late–"
"Which started an impossible chain of events so complex it's ridiculous," Khorne cut in, "Can't you just make a plan that sounds sane for once?"
"You're just jealous of my evil mastermind swagger," Tzeentch shot back. "Anyway, if it goes according to the plan, and it always does, it will be a bigger clusterfuck than Man of Steel."
"Great," Nurgle whispered, "Now can you please start rolling the dice again?"
"So…" Rin started, as she walked up the stairs of Fuyuki's temples beside Kotomine, "You convinced Lancer's Master to loan you his servant, since Caster's operations run the risk of revealing the war to the world? Or at least, even more than Saber's fight with Assassin in the middle of the town?"
"I can be very persuasive," the priest replied mirthfully. "I had been forced to use some rather shocking arguments, but it worked." By shocking arguments, I obviously mean cutting Bazett's arm and stealing her seals.
"I don't believe you," Rin shot back.
"Honestly, Rin, the better question is: Why is your servant painted in purple?"
"It is camouflage," Archer replied, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.
"Camouflage?" Kotomine raised an eyebrow, "What kind of camouflage is purple?"
"Exactly!" The Ork chuckled, "They will never think it's a camouflage, and they won't see it coming!"
Kotomine stopped dead on his tracks. "That's… actually somewhat logic–"
"NO!" Rin cut in, enraged, "Kirei, if you say that word, I'm going to shove your Bible down your throat and set you on fire! Don't ever, EVER, say that word to me again!"
"You, young lady, have a serious problem with overreacting," Lancer pointed out.
"This giant idiot is driving me nuts!" Rin snarled. "Are all Orks like that?"
"One Ork discovered time travel, and the sanest thing he thought to do with it was to kill his past self, so he could have two of his favorite gun, causing a massive time paradox that almost destroyed the universe," the Necron narrated, "So yes, Orks are a species of madmen."
"How do they even function as a species?" Kotomine asked, astonished.
"Because by the standards of my time? They are pretty reasonable. At least they did not orgy a god into existence."
"Yeah, the Eldars are never going to live that down," Archer chirped. "By the way, you tin can, why haven't you tried to destroy the Earth yet?"
"What does he mean by that?" Kotomine raised an eyebrow at his Servant. "Did you try to destroy a planet in the past?"
"No, but my species does that as a hobby," Lancer replied with chilling calm. "My fellows believe themselves to be the one true, purest race in the universe and all others unworthy of living."
"Kirei…" Rin shuddered, "You teamed up with a Dalek!"
Ah… that explains why he was summoned as my Servant. "And is it the same with you?"
"Of course not," Lancer replied, almost offended, "If I kill everyone, what will I collect? Barren, lifeless rocks?"
Before Kirei could argue with his Servant that pointless destruction was an end in itself, a volley of lightning bolts fell upon them.
Archer instantly put himself in front of the group, his body easily shielding them from the blasts. A dozen, walking armored suits emerged from the temple, equipped with deadly blasters. A small team of demonic monsters backed them up, led by a sword-swinging colossus. "Defend the temple!" Abaddon the Despoiler roared. "For the glory of Chaos!"
"I'm gonna stomp ya like fleas!" Ghazghkull snarled, charging at the demonic gang, leaving the rest of the team to confront the Rubric Marines.
"Damn it!" Rin said, preparing her gems, while Kirei brought out Black Keys from under his robes. "They outnumber us."
Undaunted, Lancer charged forward and readied his staff, dodging incoming projectiles. "Divided you will fall, but united you die," he whispered while hitting one of the creature with his staff. "Empathic Obliterator, exterminate!"
A flash of green light filled the area, and the Rubric Marines instantly fell into dust and pieces. "Amazing," Rin whispered. "How did you do that?"
"The rumors were true… the Empathic Obliterator is truly the strongest weapon against groups."
Rin blinked, as Caster teleported in front of the group, alongside what appeared to be his Master. "Kuzuki-sensei?" the school idol blinked upon recognizing her teacher. "Is that you?"
"Tohsaka," Kuzuki replied with a poker face, "How troublesome. I apologize, but I will have to kill you."
"Kuzuki, would you kindly take down the Masters?" Caster politely asked. "There is a tin can I must open, from the inside-out."
"Sure," the teacher replied, already charging at Rin and Kirei. Meanwhile, his Servant started firing at Lancer with his Inferno Pistol.
Rin first cast a fireball at the teacher, while Kirei launched his Black Keys. Caster's Master, much to Tohsaka's shock, didn't even bother to dodge. The projectiles grazed his skin and suit without doing any damage, but this slowed him long enough for the Magi to reinforce their limbs for a physical confrontation.
The teacher quickly reached Kirei first, attempting to punch him with amazing speed. Kotomine dodged the strike before retaliating with an elbow blow. Moving like a snake, Kuzuki moved outside the attack's range, his arms swinging and attacking from an odd range, putting the priest on the defensive.
Rin attempted to flank and kick the teacher. The man sensed the attack coming and simply locked eyes with the magus. His gaze shined with blue fire, and Rin's heart was overwhelmed by an unnatural feeling of absolute dread. She lost her focus, and Kuzuki's arm moved in for a quick kill.
Kotomine grabbed his student by the sleeve and threw her out of harm's way, before attempting to stab his foe's heart with a Black Key. Kuzuki vanished into smoke, nothing more than a convincing illusion. The real Master reappeared behind Kirei, intent on crushing his neck.
Having regained her composure, Rin reacted faster by throwing another fireball at the teacher. Kuzuki dodged with a backward leap, but Rin interrupted him with yet another fireball. A bluish aura formed around the Master, shielding him from the blast.
Kirei examined the man closely as he landed on his feet. The source of the teacher's powers wasn't prana. A demonic, dark force inhabited his body, granting him enhanced strength and magical abilities in exchange for worship.
"It appears Caster bound a demon to his Master's soul," Kotomine said, glancing at his Servant. Lancer and his foe were currently locked in a staff duel, each trying to disarm the other.
Focusing back on Kuzuki, Kotomine decided the best way to defeat the man was not to fight as a magus, but as a priest. He started reciting his Church's one true miracle.
"I will kill. I will let live. I will harm and heal. None will escape me. None will escape my sight."
Kuzuki grunted. Obviously, the dark spirits inside him realized what was happening and pushed him into action. The man put himself on guards.
Moving swiftly, Kirei penetrated Kuzuki's guard with a palm strike, pushing the man two meters backward.
"I welcome those who have grown old and those who have lost," Kirei whispered, dodging a blast of pink fire thrown at his face, "Devote yourself to me, learn from me, and obey me."
The blue aura around Kuzuki increased in brightness, assaulting the priest's mind with ghoulish vision of his inevitable death.
But Kirei had already died once, hadn't he? What fear was there in death anymore? He carried on. "Rest. Do not forget song, do not forget prayer, and do not forget me." He dodged a magically-enhanced punch from Kuzuki next. "I am light and relieve you of all your burdens."
Moving next to the teacher's left flank, Kirei promptly kicked it. "Do not pretend. Retribution for forgiveness, betrayal for trust, despair for hope, darkness for light, dark death for the living."
Kuzuki hissed and retaliated with two, oddly aimed punches. But by then Kirei had figured out his attack pattern and dodged. "Relief is in my hands. I will add oil to your sins and leave a mark," he said, "Eternal life is given through death."
He pushed back both of Kuzuki's arms, leaving his skull exposed. "Ask for forgiveness here. I, the incarnation, will swear."
Kirei slammed Kuzuki's head with both hands, crushing his glasses and unleashing the full power of his saintly rite.
Kuzuki hissed, as dark, pinkish smoke flew out of his body, the evil spirits inhabiting him banished from the material plane. "I failed," the teacher noted one second before Kirei broke his neck with a powerful strike.
"Kirei…" Rin whispered, as Kuzuki's lifeless body fell to the ground. "That was… awesome. Brutal, but awesome."
"I am a good exorcist," Kirei shrugged.
The resulting snarl of rage from Caster brought the priest's full attention.
"You… you killed my Master." Ahriman's eyes shined with a blue, ferocious glow. "You will pay this affront with your life!"
Enraged, Ahriman lifted his Necron opponent above the ground with psychic powers and hurled him down the stairs. He focused next on the Masters.
Panicking, Kirei threw two Black Keys at Caster. The weapons stopped midair, surrounded by a blue glow, and disintegrated into dust. Ahriman raised his staff in the priest's direction, who instantly started floating above the ground, restrained by an invisible force.
Rin attempted to exploit the situation to cast a spell, unleashing a fireball at Caster. Without bothering to look at the Tohsaka, the sorcerer pointed his Inferno Bolt in her direction, firing a ghostly stream of azure fire at her. The young magus barely managed to dodge the deadly assault.
"I can see your sins, for my eyes gaze into your very soul, Kotomine Kirei," Ahriman hissed to the helpless priest. "For your trouble, I shall give you the answer to the question that haunted you your entire life, before I kill you."
Kirei's eyes widened. "The… answer?"
"You were born the way you are, because the gods strive in mocking you!" Ahriman taunted. "Our life, our existence, is meaningless, an endless puppet show the gods watch for their ghastly amusement! There is no eternal reward for your faith, no punishment for your crimes! All you will find beyond death is the screaming anguish of oblivion! Your entire life was nothing more than a cruel joke, and your beliefs, foolish lies!"
"No, this cannot be!" Kirei's previously stoic face crumbled into an expression of shock and despair, "This is-"
"The fate of all sinners," Caster snapped his fingertips, "Is to burn!"
A pillar of white fire materialized around the priest, roasting him alive.
Rin couldn't utter a word, as Kirei's screams of agony resonated through the temple. His flesh melted off his bone, which then turned into dust. Although she never liked the priest, his death was nothing short of a vivid nightmare. Grey ashes fell on the stairs, the last remains of her former mentor.
Caster's eyes then focused on Rin. The sorcerer pointed his staff at her. "Please die," he simply commanded, unleashing a purple lightning bolt powerful enough to humiliate Zeus himself.
Using the jewels she accumulated over the years, Rin quickly formed a counterspell. But even with the power boost, she struggled to push back the warlock's nefarious power. While resisting the bolt, she could feel the infinite spite and loathing the sorcerer poured in it. Although she managed to survive the terrifying onslaught, Rin realized she had burned out all of her spare jewels to do so, leaving her at the warlock's mercy.
"Impressive," Caster commented with grudging respect, "Few are those who can counter my Doombolt, especially at your age. You will be a fine addition to my Rubric Marines."
His eyes shined with a crimson, demonic light. "Prepare to join the Thousand Sons! Turn my foe into my slave, Rubric of-"
A laser beam impacted his metal mask, making him stagger and screwing up the spell. Rin's eyes focused on the source of the ray, a flying, metallic scarab. An entire swarm of similar constructs floated above Caster, showering him under constant fire. The warlock formed a bluish light barrier around himself as protection.
Rin's savior jumped in front of her. "It appears my Master suffered permanent destruction," Lancer whispered, "I need you to form a pact with me, or else I might run out of energy. My customized Mindshackles Scarabs won't distract him for long."
The panicked witch regained her composure and nodded. "I, Rin of the Tohsaka household, accept you Lancer as my Servant!"
"I, Trazyn the Infinite, Necron Overlord, accept you as my Master with honor," Lancer replied, as the magus' prana flowed within its circuits. "Your potential is greater than my late Master's."
Ahriman's snarls interrupted their discussion.
"I forged you with my mind and breathed life inside you! I filled you with my unbending will, and the knowledge to end all things!" Caster lifted his staff, now surrounded by pink and blue lights. "Unleash your power, my Black Staff! The power of a god among men!"
While Caster's power previously ridiculed Rin's own, this time it dwarfed her the same way a mighty star could put a meager planet to shame as his Noble Phantasm increased his magical powers tenfold.
With an angry curse, the warlock unleashed pink and blue ethereal winds around himself. The powerful sorcery reduced the flying drones to dust, next moving in Rin's direction. They crashed against an invisible barrier, unable to pierce it.
"A portable force field," Trazyn explained calmly, "I never leave my lair without it."
"He's too strong," Rin realized, as the force field started cracking. "How can he do that? Without a Master his prana supply should be crippled!"
"He does not need a Master anymore, now that he has built his base," Lancer explained, "By opening a gate into the Warp, Ahriman can siphon its power. In short, his energy supply is virtually limitless within his stronghold's borders."
"Then how can we beat him?" Rin whispered. "I could use a Command Spell to call Archer, but Caster will reply by calling Avenger."
"There is a way," Lancer replied, "I could use my strongest Noble Phantasm, and call a C'tan."
"A machine god," the Necron replied, "But once it wins a battle for me, I will lose control over it and things might get troublesome. Very troublesome."
The force field bended slightly, Caster's wicked magic almost breaking past it.
"Summon it, summon it, summon it!" Rin ordered frantically.
"Alright." The Necron raised his staff toward the skies. "Great lord of the C'tan–"
He never finished, as a flash of light swallowed the entire temple.
"So pressed to die, lowlife?" Abaddon taunted the Ork. "I will gladly oblige."
"I'm bigger than ya, hummie!" Ghazghkull shot back, pointing his arm cannon at Abaddon's face. "Respect my AUTORITAH!
Avenger easily dodged the gunshot and ordered his demonic minions to swarm Archer while he provided cover fire with his prized custom bolter-claw, the Talon of Horus. The colossal Ork stomped on the minor demons, eviscerated a Bloodletter with his bare metal hand, and charged like a madman. He took a few shots to the face.
Ghazghkull didn't even flinch.
When the Ork was within range, Abaddon welcomed him with a swing of his colossal sword. Ghazghkull shielded himself with his metal arm before head butting the Chaos champion. Horus' successor staggered slightly, retaliating by firing the Talon of Horus at the Ork's chestand blowing out a small chunk of his armor.
Avenger then attempted to behead his foe with a powerful vertical motion of his blade. Archer stepped back, and the swing only grazed his face, drawing little blood. Still, it had been a close call. Ghazghkull then moved forward, attempting to punch Abaddon's skull into pieces. Avenger swung his blade again.
When Ghazghkull caught it with his metal claws, Abaddon exploited the opportunity to catch the Ork's head with the Talon of Horus, shocking his foe with powerful lightning. Since half of the skull was made of metal, the ruthless tactic was doubly effective. Avenger hoped to fry Archer's brain within seconds… if he had a brain, of course.
Then Ghazghkull shoved his arm cannon on Abaddon's face and fired, taking out the left eye and part of the skull, forcing him to release his hold on Archer. Avenger snarled and meditated, unleashing his psychic powers in the form of a powerful telekinetic push. The Ork flew backwards, yet he managed to land on his feet.
"I will show you true power!" Abaddon hissed through his gutter, activating his first Noble Phantasm. "This is our galaxy! Ours to corrupt! Ours to enslave! The gods will not be denied their prize! Mark of Chaos Ascendant, awaken!"
His Noble Phantasm activated, giving the despoiler of worlds a direct connection to the Chaos Gods so he could ask for their assistance in battle. Abaddon prayed, as he prepared himself for a mental contact no sane man could ever hope to survive.
"Robin and Barney divorced? Seriously? But they were made to be together!"
"Yeah, and the mother was dead for years! And her name was-"
"Stop spoiling the ending you omniscient dickhead god of hope!"
"Ah yeah? Make me! You know how Game of Thrones is gonna end, Khorne? EVERYONE DIES! EVEN THE DWARF!"
"My lords!" Abaddon shouted, trying to catch their attention. "I need your help!"
"Guys, I think someone is trying to use a Wish spell. Maybe I could cast it?"
"Yeah but the GM just overruled you, Nurgle."
"Lord Khorne, please grant me your power!"
"Because you failed a Plead for Mercy Check."
"Lord Tzeentch, please!"
"Wait a second, I'm rolling the dices to decide your future… aaaand you're dead. Your charisma is just that low. Bye!"
"Pick me! Pick me!"
"… anyone else? Lord Slaanesh?"
"He's not even born yet you moron," Tzeentch replied. "Or is it a she? I can never tell…"
"Orcus riding a Tarasque, Orcus riding a Tarasque! No, Graz'zt, Asmodeus and Orcus riding red dragons! They're gonna kill them all! CHAOS RULES!"
"Alright, why did I ask in the first place?"
"Come on, pick me! Papa wants to help!"
"… Lord Nurgle, may you grant me assistance that doesn't involve giving me a nasty illness?"
"That's just a dick move!" Nurgle complained, but his pity won out. "Alright, Papa will grant your wish."
"Nurgle, you're the god of despair. Shouldn't you be trying to break his spirit instead?"
"I'm also the god of friendship, and friendship is MAGIC!"
"You really need to stop watching this awful cartoon. Seriously, every time I see a pony I want to kill it now."
In spite of the gods' endless bickering, Abaddon rejoiced, as he felt Nurgle's immeasurable power flow through his body, healing his wounds instantly. His pain vanished, replaced with supreme self-confidence. Time to put this blessing to use, he thought, raising his blade toward the skies.
"I am the Arch-fiend, the Despoiler of Worlds, and by my hands shall the false Emperor fall! To embrace Chaos is to embrace the truth! Those who deny it shall only know pain!" Abaddon lowered his blade. "Open the gates of hell, Drach'nyen!"
Reality itself shuddered.
Space bent, opening countless portals around the Chaos champion. In a fiery display of terrifying sorcery, an entire legion of daemons emerged from the breaches. Giant flies, one-eyed Cyclopes, monstrous deformed beasts, and colossal engines of war swarmed the temple, roaring in unison.
"Armies of Nurgle!" Abaddon commanded. "Destroy Chaos' enemies!"
"Yes!" Ghazghkull growled with excitement. "Big fightin'!"
The Ork decided to unleash his truest, strongest Noble Phantasm – the embodiment of his entire mindset and culture. He summoned it with one single word that broke the already strained aspects of reality itself.
When the light dissipated, the temple had vanished.
Instead, the fighters found themselves standing on an endless, barren plain, full of the remains of crashed spaceships. Quickly, hundreds of thousands creatures materialized on it, surrounding Abaddon's army entirely.
An entire, endless army of Orks outnumbered Chaos' forces one hundred to one. Ahriman stopped his assault, studying the situation. Abaddon's confidence swiftly left place to growing worry, as Ghazghkull raised his hands and gave a signal to his troops.
The Ork armies roared the same word and charged.
Never before had Rin seen such a chaotic, disorganized picture. Archer's followers varied in size, some smaller than humans and others nearly as big as Ghazghkull himself. A few Orks were riding colossal war machines, while an entire force instead used 'primitive', rocket-powered bikes. The creatures wielded crude weapons, and most importantly, impossibly huge guns, which they started shooting with like madmen. The larger Orks charged, stomping over their smaller troops to reach the daemons.
"A Reality Marble…" Rin glanced in dread at Archer, who laughed happily, reveling in the carnage. "He can create a Reality Marble."
The filthy daemons bravely fought for their lives as they were led by Avenger who started cutting through his foes by the dozen while Ghazghkull kept firing relentlessly in his directions. An immense Ork war machine the size of a hill almost crushed Ahriman under its foot. He barely managed to teleport away at the last second to join Abaddon, then supporting him with cover fire.
Yet neither Ahriman's spells nor Abaddon's incredible strength could halt the inevitable, as their demonic army started crumbing under the sheer numerical advantage. The two Chaos warriors quickly found themselves back to back, mercilessly gunning down any Ork approaching.
"Do something!" Ahriman hissed. "That Reality Marble cut my connection to the Warp! I will run out of power soon if this keeps going on!"
"You know what? I'm bloody tired! Fuck this war! Fuck this planet!" Abaddon snarled, calling upon his strongest Noble Phantasm. "Rain death from above, my Planet Killer! Armageddon Gun!"
Did he say Planet Killer? Rin thought, as a shadow obscured the skies. Rising her eyes, she realized a gigantic black spaceship had materialized above the Reality Marble's surface. Its colossal cannon, easily the size of an entire country, pointed at the Ork armies.
"This is gonna suck," Rin said, as the cannon fired, annihilating the entire Reality Marble in a blinding ray of power. The aftershock bent space itself, impacting the real world.
When the dust settled, all that remained of Fuyuki's temple was a smoking crater.
"So that's the whole story," Gilgamesh explained, "I need a training regimen to regain my former awesomeness. Everybody recommended you."
Taiga Fujimura crossed her arms, "Sorry, but we only take people with superpowers. Come back when you've been bitten by a radioactive spider."
"My superpower?" Gilgamesh searched inside his pockets and brought out a purse full of god. "I'm filthy rich."
"That'll do it!" she replied, greedily grabbing the money. "First I need to put on a Rocky song. You can't train without Rocky's theme song. I'm going to make a swordsman out of you… no, scratch that, I'm gonna make a man out of you."
"Considering all the money I spent on this session, you sort of have to," Gilgamesh sneered, "Now just teach me awesome techniques and be-"
Taiga slapped the golden king on the cheek. The sheer power of the blow tossed the Archer to the floor, and he glared at the swordswoman with both shock and rage. "You… you hit me!" he snarled. "Not even my father hit me!"
"It's the Bright Slap," Taiga replied, "It turns whiny wimps into men of DESTINY!"
"You can't slap a king!" Gilgamesh rose up again, only for Taiga to propel him back to the ground with a punch.
"And now I struck a king!" Taiga snarled. "And then, I'm gonna kick a king!"
"Alright, alright!" Gilgamesh rose up back to his feet. "I'll shut up I promise!"
"I will only tell you one time," Taiga said, "Don't fuck with me, Gil. Don't you ever try to fuck with me. Or I'll go full Tarantino on your ass, Kill Bill style. Understood?"
"That's 'yes, sensei' for you!"
"That's the spirit!" Taiga grinned. "Welcome to the Tiger Dojo, apprentice!"
Servant of the Day
Spirit: Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka, Prophet of the Waaagh!
Class: Archer (could also serve as a Berserker or Rider)
Master: Rin Tohsaka
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
N. Phantasm: A+++
- Independent Action A+: Mag can survive without a Master, but he needs one to activate his NP.
- Magic Resistance, B: Mag resists most spells, but powerful modern magi can hurt him if they try hard enough.
- Battle Continuation, A: Mag can fight even with deadly injuries for an extended period of time.
- Bravery, A+: Mag will fight the good fight, without confusion, doubt or fear.
- Charisma, A: suitable for the most charismatic Ork Warboss, able to inspire his people with great speeches and bloody swearing.
- Instinct, A: Mag psychically feels the flow of a battle, better guided by it.
- Psyker, C: Mag possesses latent psychic powers, but they are rendered near nonexistent by the lack of other Orks nearby.
- Military Tactics, C: Mag is an genius tactician by Ork standards, and average by human standards.
- Waaagh!, EX, Reality Marble: a Reality Marble representing Armageddon, the planet Mag tried to take over his entire life, and more precisely, the plain where he died in his final showdown his nemesis One-Eyed Yarrick. All the dead orks he commanded during his lifetime are summoned to fight in his name, for a Waaagh! To end all Waaagh!
- More Dakka, A, Anti-Logic: any times Mag needs a gun, he gets a bigger one.
- Krooz Missile to the face, A, Anti-Fortress: a powerful, Ork-made missile. How it works is still a mystery for the Orks themselves.
The meanest, largest Ork to have ever lived, Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka lived convinced to be the prophet of the Ork gods, tasked to lead his people in a final, bloody war. Leading armies and ravaging entire systems, he gained a 'favorite enemy' in Imperial Commissar Yarrick, with whom he clashed multiple times. The two ended up killing each other in a legendary duel for the fate of the Armageddon system. Which of the two died first is a constant source of arguments among scholars.
A/N: yeah, the story is called Property Damage. Now you know why. Oh, and congrats on those who saw Archer's main NP coming.
RIP evil priest, but don't worry Rin's interactions with Lancer should be just as entertaining. Next chapter will almost entirely focus on Ilya's team and the fallout of this chapter (especially the crater). The title will be Grand Theft Khârn. You're warned.
I wonder if you'll find all the Shout-outs in the Gilgamesh segment.
Next thing to do: somehow get a TV Tropes page for Property Damage and Atlas. Beside the fact publicity is always a boon, I'm genuinely curious how tropers see these fics... most probably they see cliches I didn't even notice.
By the way, for the readers of "What it takes to win" in the audience: due to continuous writer's block, I've considered doing a rewrite, with a better, more coherent storyline. I introduced too many of the plot points too soon and I think I wrote myself into a corner there. Nothing confirmed, since I will finish one of my current stories (most probably Atlas) first before doing something like that, but I've been considering it. Beside I just can hardly stand leaving anything I do unfinished.
You know, when you're written a fic (or just a story in general) and reread it years later, most often you'll tell yourself 'I can't believe I wrote that'. It's almost funny really. It's trial and errors: you've to fail the first time to succeed the second time. Take Echoes or What it takes to win: I never regretted writing them (and never will), but if I could get back in time, I would do many things differently. I guess that's the moment you realize your storytelling improved over time.
Anyway, I've rambled long enough. Atlas' bonus chapter is half-done and will be updated next. When I can't say, got exams in May.
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