A/N: I wanted to get this story out there since I've already got the ball rolling and I don't see anyone else trying this, though updates will vary depending on circumstances that life throws at me(won't be as constant as my Pokémon story, but I'll try to have something of a regular schedule, maybe every other week) This is a retelling of the Arcadia story with several Tales of Vesperia characters(and some lore) integrated into it. For those familiar with Vesperia, then I will say now that I plan to have everyone from the party joining(excluding Patty cause she's a PS3 Japanese exclusive and I only have the 360 version, plus the story doesn't really need to deal with her ghosts) as well as a few prominent support characters throughout the Vesperia story, (Flame shield activated: 200% power) including Sodia…with half of her bitchiness…
Yet another day in the dingy, disease riddled Lower City of Valua as the ever imposing storm of Valua constantly rages above the entire continent under their Yellow Moon. Orphan Yuri Lowell, and his loyal companion Repede, have done their best to keep in good spirits and help the people around them, though there's only so much a 21-year-old swordsman and a dog could do. The very fact that one of the few means of amusement around the Lower City of Valua was to watch executions and fights to the death in the Coliseum as reminders that there are people out there far worse off than them was hard enough, and the taxes seemed to only make matters worse. Yuri was sitting in his room's windowsill, looking to the Imperial Palace and shining Upper City, "Someday, Repede, we'll get out of this hell hole."
In a daring night rendezvous, a mysterious girl in white flying a sliver open cockpit machine, that did not use any know form of propulsion, was endeavoring to meet with a strange silver armored lancer riding a blue dragon. The meeting was cut short as a Valuan warship gave pursuit, dogging the two of them.
Inside the bridge of the warship, the commanding officer, a blond hair man in an elaborately designed uniform to display his rank and high standings in society, Second Admiral in the Valuan Armada, Alfonso, snickered, "We've finally found her…"
"Admiral Alfonso, her ship and the monster are in range of our cannons," the Vice Captain reported.
"Excellent. Prepare to fire concussion shells on my command but avoid hitting her ship directly. We need her alive so we can 'question' her. As for the Dragon Rider, it matters not. They've been a nescience to the Valuan Empire long enough. Fire!"
The shells exploded around the two of them, and though they weren't able to kill the dragon, the rider was thrown into the ship with the girl as the ship itself was damaged by the barrage. The dragon was about to try and save the two of them, but the Valuan ship was already on top of them and he only managed to grab his rider's spear. The dragon quickly retreated into the cloud cover, staying out of range of their cannons.
"Your Excellency, the girl has been knocked unconscious, but she's unharmed. The Dragon Rider has also been rendered unconscious. Both have been taken aboard our ship," leaving the silver vessel to continue its descent into the deep sky below.
Alfonso laughed, "The Empress will be very pleased with me. I'm sure to be rewarded…rather handsomely, I might add." Suddenly an explosion happened, rocking the ship, "What? Where did that come from? It sounded like an explosion. Status report, now!"
One of the deck officers quickly responded, "Th…the lower hull has been hit! Someone is attacking us!"
"Attacking us?! Who would dare attack a vessel of the Imperial Armada?"
The two officers found them, "There's a small ship hiding in the clouds off port side."
"Th…that flag…Air Pirates!"
What luck, a lone Valuan warship in the middle of the night and they weren't on high alert. Someone in there must be slacking big time to allow these rogues to get in this close and attack. The pirate ship quickly got in close as crewmembers threw grappling hooks to bind the two vessels together. From the crow's nest a daring young man jumped, using the hock at the pommel end of one of his swords to glide across the rope and board the Valuan ship first.
A squad of soldiers were already on deck when the lone pirate arrived, mocking him, "Air Pirate scum! Don't you know that we're Valuan Imperial Soldiers?"
"Of course I know. That's why we attacked your ship. You guys have the best stuff." The flood lights were lite, showing a brown hair young man with a crescent-shaped scar on his left check wearing a blue jacket with a red scarf and black sleeveless t-shirt underneath, black leggings, brown knee-length leather boots and a sky blue "eye patch"-shaped lens over his right eye drawing a pair of cutlasses, one of which he held by the specially designed, elongated crossguard as he held the other in a reverse grip as the Blue Moon Stones in the blades gave the edges their unique shimmer, "I'm Vyse of the Blue Rogues. And in a few minutes, I'll be relieving you of all your valuables!"
The soldiers were snickering now, "Attacking us all by yourself? You're either incredibly brave or incredibly stupid. We'll be tossing you overboard."
"Wait for me!" a girl's voice cried out from the pirate ship. "Vyse, you left without me! I'm not going to let you have all the fun." The redhead girl had her hair in two long, stiff braids that stood out to the sides as she wore a yellow dress with dark shorts and a blue belt, with yellow leather boots and a large yellow leather glove covering her left hand bearing a boomerang nearly as tall as her. Though only half of a wing was wood and had a handle carved out for her hand, the rest had the distinct green glow of being powered by a Green Moon Stone. She had a pair of goggles on her head, a pair of blue pendant earrings and a pendant around her neck, "Oh, hi, I'm Aika. I'm a Blue Rogue like Vyse…and we're robbing you."
"You dare mock the Valuan Empire with your insolence? Kill them! And toss their corpses over the side!"
Two of the soldiers surrounding them rushed in to attack, but the coordination between the two pirates easily allowed them to avoid the attacks and get in their own to knock the soldiers out. Back to back, Vyse and Aika continued to smile at the others, "There's no point in resisting. Throw down your weapons and hand over your ship."
"Imbeciles! What do the two of you think you can do against the five of us? Take 'em out."
As the soldier raised his blade to strike, a shot hit his helmet, toppling the heavily armored man without killing him. "I think you miscounted. I only see four of you." More Air Pirates have boarded the ship, flanking Aika and Vyse.
"We'll take care of these guys. Make your way to the bridge and shut down the engines." Vyse's father kept the pistol aimed at one of the soldiers' head, "And, when we're out here, remember, it's 'Captain' …not 'Dad.' Got it?"
Vyse was a carefree as ever, "Yeah, yeah… Aye aye, 'Captain.' Heh…Aika, shall we go introduce ourselves to the captain of this ship?"
"I'm ready when you are!"
"Alright! Let's go find the bridge!"
As the duo left, the Captain turned to one of his smaller crew members, "Karol," the spiked brown hair boy was wearing a green and white shirt with brown pants and white gloves as he looked up to the Captain, "Go catch up with Vyse. He might need the extra hands."
Twelve-year-old Karol Capel was younger than Vyse by five years but he has always aspired to be like Vyse, looking up to him like a big brother. "Y-yes, Captain!" Karol always carried around his trusted bag that managed to hold more things than expected as his weapon of choice was a large hammer as wide as he was with faces that were imbued with a Green Moon Stone with a few spare weapons stashed away inside his large red messenger bag, though the handles occasionally stuck out one end. The Captain and the others held off the Valuan soldiers long enough for Karol to reach the hatch Vyse and Aika jumped down.
Inside the ship, Vyse and Aika were waiting as Karol landed on his rear. "Nice of you to join us."
Karol laughed, pretending that it didn't hurt, "Well of course, you might have to fight the ship's captain if your ace wasn't around."
Aika started rubbing her hand through Karol's hair, "How could we forget our secret weapon? Now let's hurry so we can start gathering the treasures."
As the trio rushed through the ship, someone eventually called out to them. "Well…well…" this surprise had Karol hide behind Aika, though this time he managed to hold in his scream, "Air Pirates have decided to…infest my ship." Looking up they found who was call them out, "I am Alfonso, cherished son of Valua's most distinguished family, and an Admiral of the Imperial Armada." Vyse though noticed the girl being carried by the soldier and the armor of the Dragon Rider being carried by another. "Normally, lowlifes such as yourselves would never have the opportunity to bask in such greatness. Consider yourselves fortunate."
"Yeah…right… Who's the girl?" Vyse demanded. "I never thought someone of your…stature would stoop to kidnapping."
"Hah! You're very observant for a Rogue."
Karol whispered to Aika, "Is this guy for real?"
Alfonso continued, not even hearing a word from Karol, "However, I cannot waste my time dealing with you. I simply must get going. I think I shall have you exterminated like the pests you are… Dispose of them!" The alarm sounded as five soldiers armed with stun batons jumped down to stop them.
From a distance, a man with long silver white hair was riding on a six-winged gryphonic creature as they watched everything transpire with the Valuan warship. "Shouldn't we do something?"
"No," the man looked away, "They are in safe hands, for now. We still need to know what happened to him, and prevent the Valuans and Silvites from attaining the Moon Crystals." With his finally say on things, the two of them flew off to attend to other matters.
Vyse used Karol's hammer to propel himself at one of the soldier's, knocking him out with a quick slash from his blade. Aika had already tossed her boomerang, though the initial throw missed, she was waiting for its return trip to hit the solder's head hard. Karol was rather defensive, keeping a soldier back by using his hammer to block the hits. With him distracted Aika wacked him in the back of the head with her boomerang. "Nice work, Karol. As effective as always."
He chuckled halfheartedly, "Yeah, like always, I save the last strike for myself."
Aika moved aside, singlehandedly blocking the baton with her boomerang, "He's all yours."
Karol swung his hammer around, losing control for a moment before he got a hit on the soldier, sending him across the room. "Y—you see that! I got him!"
"Let's not celebrate just yet," Vyse pointed a blade toward Alfonso, "We still have that girl and the Dragon Rider to rescue."
Alfonso wasn't exactly pleased by their display. "What?! How did you defeat my soldiers?" His shock quickly turned into a sneer, "Heh…If you want my ship that badly, you can have it. I'll get another. I am very busy. I do not have time to deal with you personally. Now, if you'll excuse me…" Alfonso and his two soldiers left with their unconscious captives in tow.
Alfonso's Vice Captain lowered the hatch for the escape vessel, "Your Excellency, the sun is up and visibility is good. The preparations for your escape have been completed."
"Good work. I have finished my preparations as well…" Alfonso moved behind the Vice Captain and his other subordinate, "…preparations to dispose of traitors."
As the two soldiers turned to Alfonso, he had his rapier pointed to them both. "P…please wait!"
"Your Excellency! What are you doing?"
Alfonso forced them toward the edge of the lowered ramp, "I cannot tell the Empress that I lost my ship to the Air Pirates in a fair fight. I am going to need a scapegoat and the two of you'll do quite nicely. To keep my glorious reputation from being tarnished, you must be sacrificed…"
"N…no! You can't do this!"
Alfonso then tossed the two of them to the abyss below without a moment's hesitation, not even having the decency of killing them beforehand. Sheathing the rapier, he smiled, "Even in death, they'll serve me well. I can't wait to tell the Empress… 'But Empress, my own Vice Captain and his most trusted lackey betrayed us and allowed the Air Pirates on board… I could do naught but dispose of the traitors myself'."
"So, this is how Valua treats its people…"
"What?!" Alfonso quickly turned to where the voice came from.
It was Vyse and his two companions. They had the Dragon Rider and the girl with them now as Vyse held his blades out. "Now that we've taken control of your ship, we'll be taking the girl and Dragon Rider as well. There's just one more thing I need to do." Vyse took up his combat stance now, "After seeing you kill unarmed men in cold blood, I can't allow you to walk away from this. Draw your blade, Alfonso!"
"Hah…An uncivilized Rogue such as yourself wants to challenge me?" Alfonso then had that smug snicker again as he brushed his hair to the side, "You aren't worth my effort, but perhaps you'd like to meet one of my pets. Come, Antonio!"
The door at Vyse's end started to bulge as something tried to force its way through. Finally the door gave way to a massive muscular quadruped brute with two horns protruding from its shoulders. "What? What is that thing?" the creature had armor covering most of its body, a pair of blades attached to the front hooves and a helmet piece that gave it a third horn to skewer its opponents.
Karol freaked at the sight of the creature, "A Kantor war bull!"
Alfonso corrected Karol, "He's my personal war beast. I was going to leave him here, but it seems I've found a use for him after all. Antonio! Trample the pests…and make their deaths as painful as possible."
Aika was at the girl's side, though she was getting her boomerang ready, "Karol, watch over those two while Vyse and I deal with Antonio."
"Uh…s—sure…n-no problem…" though Karol was easily frightened he was more so for what he knew, "Aika! Nan told me to watch out for a Kantor's horns. Not only can they pierce steel, but somehow they fire lightning bolts from 'em too."
Vyse was ready, "Thanks for the heads up, Karol. Now keep them safe!"
Vyse and Aika rushed to Antonio, drawing his attention away from Karol and the unconscious pair. Just as Karol had warned, Antonio was able to fire off bolts of lightning but Vyse's blades blocked the bolts as Aika threw her boomerang to draw Antonio to expose his unprotected underbelly.
As Antonio reared up in anger, Vyse slashed across his belly with a few strikes, but Antonio's thick hid prevented such an occurrence. Antonio charged at Vyse now, smashing into the wall and getting his horns stuck. Vyse and Aika quickly used this opportunity to try and finish the war beast once and for all. And in perfect harmony, the two of them slew Antonio before he could free himself.
Alfonso had used Antonio's fight to get himself onto his personal escape boat, "Bah! Perhaps there is more to you than meets the eye. Well, Vyse of the Blue Rogues… You will rue this day…the day you stood against the Valuan Empire. We shall meet again."
Vyse and Aika rushed after the boat but he was already long gone. "You coward!" Aika screamed, "What kind of commander sacrifices his own men and his ship to run from a fight?" She started to smile though as she turned back to Vyse, "Well, even though he was a coward, he was a coward with gold…"
Vyse had a smile now too, turning back to her, "True…I suppose that the ship and everything on it officially belong to us now."
"We haven't had a catch this big for quite some time! The people back home are going to be impressed."
Karol rushed over to the two, "Hey you guys, what are we going to do about them?"
Aika and Vyse turned to the unconscious Dragon Rider and girl. "Your right, Karol," and without having to deal with chasing Alfonso or fighting, Aika took a moment to really look the girl over, "I've never seen anyone dressed like that girl before." The girl's skin was rather pale with blue pendant earrings similar in shape to the ones Aika has. Around her wrists, neck and ankles she had strange golden cuffs that had strange markings similar to the gold patterns on her dress, veil and gold headband. Of her dress, she had a triangular cutout above her breasts, though the opening revealing nothing too explicit. The most curious thing about her were the sleeves on her arms that weren't attached to the dress by any visible means, and the odd arcane markings on her forehead and shoulders.
Vyse looked her over, "You're right. She sure doesn't look like she's from around here. I wonder why Valua was trying to kidnap this girl in the first place."
"Hmm…I wonder where she's from…" Karol pondered.
The Dragon Rider's armor was rather unique as well, the helm was pointed like a spear tip yet the shoulder guards that could easily cover his entire arms looked pliable. The helmet also had a diamond pattern that resembled the Rider's infamous red and black spear, with two purple gems between the eye holes and forehead. The chest down had red, purple and gold strips that looked oddly familiar. Aika smiled, "Well I think we can guess why he was captured, rescuing the damsel in distress all by his lonesome."
Vyse laughed, "Well, let get the silver knight and the princess back to the Albatross."
A/N: Still working on how to play out the ship-to-ship fights(especially against the Gigas). On a side note I plan to reintroduce a few pieces of 'mature' content that were cut out of the English versions, mostly just the cut drunkers in Esparanza and Lower City, Ramirez's bleeding hand and Bellena's outfit…