Crawling to the Dawn
a Fate series fanfiction written by The Overlord Bear
Summary: Shirou Emiya ends up summoning a certain treacherous Knight of the Round Table as his Servant for the Fifth Holy Grail War, and said Servant is a somewhat sane Berserker to boot…a Berserker who then ends up wanting to smack some sense into him and a bunch of other people.
WARNING: MATURE CONTENT!
Previous Chapter: E-Rank Luck
Chapter 2: Rude Awakening
I want to be like Father.
“Will you stop it already?”
I want to inherit what is his someday.
“I have told you that you are unfit to do so.”
I know I am worthy.
“You are not.”
Deep down, he knows that as well.
“Cease your delusions.”
He has seen enough proof. I have given him enough proof. I have even lived serving him.
“You do not know what you are babbling about.”
So why? Why am I still not enough?
“Why, you ask?”
Shirou Emiya was used to girls waking him up.
See, as far he could remember, ever since he started living as Kiritsugu Emiya’s adopted son, being woken up by girls eventually became something that often happened in his daily life.
And so far, the only girls who would wake him up in the morning were Taiga Fujimura (who acted more like a teenage girl than the adult woman she actually is) and Sakura Matou.
Indeed, that said something about how close they were to him. Not like he was that close to them, though. That would be very awkward, indeed…
Anyway, in this case, the former was the one who woke him up…and with a very painful smacking that he hadn’t felt a lot ever since the early days of their sibling-like relationship.
But first, Shirou needed to get his sense of balance back straight. No way he could respond to Fuji-nee well without that, among other things.
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING, SLEEPING WITH A NAKED GIRL!?”
Okay, was he hearing things now? Was there a tiger growling something insane? Was Fuji-nee drunk or something? Really, he had a hard time processing everything…
Now, if he could only get his sense of balance back, at least…
Man, everything seemed like it was kinda spinning…if only he knew some Magecraft that could cure dizziness…
“Ugh, who the hell is making that noise…? Tch, you better give me a good excuse to not kill you!”
“Wait, what? Whoa, you’re not gonna beat me!”
Now that got Shirou’s senses kicked into more consciousness. Trouble was brewing, and he, an aspiring Hero of Justice, had to stop it!
And so, the charged-up redhead jumped up to his feet and went with a separating push from each hand in between Fuji-nee and a strangely strong naked girl.
Wait, a naked girl? Who looks pretty much like a foreigner with blonde hair and green eyes?
And wow, she’s got some strength in such a small frame…and why was she not kicking his face already for peeking!?
“DON’T WORRY, SHIROU!” Fuji-nee shouted as she easily broke free of Shirou’s weakened grip. “I’LL SAVE YOU!”
And then Shirou got kicked in the face by Fuji-nee, knocking him down.
What he heard next was a noisy battle between two crazy females.
“YOU WILL PAY FOR DEFILING MY DEAR SHIROU!”
“AND YOU’RE GONNA PAY FOR DISTURBING MY PRECIOUS SLEEP!”
“EAT TH – Oof…”
And then there was the sound of a weighty something hitting the floor with a thud.
Judging from what recently transpired, said something was probably a knocked-out Fuji-nee.
“Good grief…and I thought things would go better if I stayed hidden…”
Shirou then heard the annoyed voice of Archer.
“What’s going on? What is…Huh?”
There was also the hurried voice of Rin Tohsaka, and then there was the puzzled voice of Sakura Matou.
Shirou wanted to respond with words at least, but the only thing he managed to utter for the moment was a groan.
Oh well…at least Fuji-nee wasn’t using that cursed shinai of hers…
“I’m…Rin’s cosplayer friend…”
That was Archer speaking. Oh, and Sakura wasn’t supposed to know about the Holy Grail War.
“I’m also good at martial arts…as you can see here…”
Shirou then heard the sound of a slap, followed by a mix of a groan and a growl.
Sounds like an irritated Tohsaka facepalmed, then.
“But who…who’s that girl?” Sakura then asked, her voice sounding shaken.
“What did you say?”
And then Shirou felt a familiar murderous aura, something which forced his still spinning senses into some consciousness.
By the time the redhead had stood up and looked for the source of that aura, he found the naked girl on top of Sakura, collaring the purple-haired girl.
“What did you just call me, huh?” the blonde girl told Sakura, the former’s face close to the latter’s terrified face. “Say that again, you bitch.”
The blonde girl then turned her green – no, red-eyed glare to not one, but two distressed people.
Shirou found Tohsaka’s distress a little strange, though, but what mattered right now was keeping Sakura from getting hurt.
And then it dawned on Shirou.
He couldn’t say his own Servant’s name out loud, though, not with Sakura around. But still, he remembered what Archer said about Mad Enhancement and Berserkers.
Shirou wasn’t sure about whether or not there could be more than one Servant like this one, though. The Berserker he met last night was a polite young man, while this one was a rude girl.
“No, it couldn’t be…” Shirou then said.
“GET OFF HER RIGHT NOW!”
But as the doubting young man stood in place, the enraged school idol went out to charge at the likely Berserker Servant who tried to attack Sakura. Archer followed her with a shout as well, and as he went to approach…
…the rude and berserk girl suddenly became covered by Berserker’s battlewear of gray metal and red fabric.
So…she was Berserker?
Shirou blinked, attention drawn by Sakura, who had sat up, looking at him while trembling on the floor.
Right, Sakura. He had to ensure her safety first.
“Are you okay, Sakura?” he asked, kneeling down to keep his eyes level with hers.
“I-I’m okay, Senpai…” she answered, “But what about you?”
“Well…it’s nothing too big…” Shirou to tried to assure her with a fake smile that he knew he couldn’t maintain thanks to his shaken senses.
And then there was the noise of things breaking outside his room.
Shirou then remembered his tattooed left hand and what his now crazed Servant told him the night before.
“Sorry, Sakura,” the redhead then said, “But I’ll have to leave you here for a while. I’ll be helping Tohsaka and Archer out there.”
And Shirou stood up and ran, following the noise.
Once he reached the area where his armored Servant was, he raised his left hand and shouted.
“DON’T USE YOUR MAD ENHANCEMENT, BERSERKER!”
There was a glow from his left hand, and after that happened, Berserker stopped in the middle of throwing a punch, right as Tohsaka finished her backstep towards Archer.
Still, Shirou felt terror when his Servant’s helmed head and glowing eyes turned to face him.
And then with the red glow within her helm dying out, she crashed to the floor, metal and wood making noise.
Luckily, the only broken things in the room were the dining table and the few decorations on it.
With sighs of relief, Shirou and Tohsaka also hit the floor, but on their knees instead. Archer just straightened himself back from his combat stance as he sighed out his own relief.
As heavy breathing came out from the two second-years, the male one had his upper body reaching the floor as well.
He closed his eyes, but he could still hear Tohsaka moving towards him, speaking words that tried to be certain of his safety and health.
Shirou appreciated his mutual crush’s concern, but he also found it uneccessary.
“I’m…I’m okay…Tohsaka…Fuji-nee…just hit me…too hard…”
“You idiot!” the school idol shouted. “You’re such an idiot that you…Ugh, stop making my life harder!”
Really, Tohsaka kept on surprising him…Was she really the real Rin Tohsaka? Shirou couldn’t believe it.
“N – T-Tohsaka-san? S-Senpai? Are you okay?”
Shirou then heard Sakura. He wanted to answer, but his dizziness suddenly gave him a harder time, so he just let out a groan as he waited for his senses to properly get back into balance.
“I’ll take care of them,” entered Archer, who had introduced himself as a cosplayer friend with martial arts skills earlier. “They just need some rest.”
“O-Okay…” Sakura complied. “Please care for them well…”
“I will…I will…” the tall man told the first-year as he picked Shirou up and carried him under one arm.
And then there was silence…well, mostly. He could hear Archer muttering about how much of a pain fixing and cleaning the dining room was going to be, and then there was his complaints about Fuji-nee, calling her crazy and all.
Shirou silently agreed with Archer’s thoughts there.
Soon, the redhead was, surprisingly, gently placed onto the floor of his room, according to what his half-opened eyes managed to see for some moments.
“Heh, don’t expect my Master to be by your side when you wake up, though,” Archer jibed. “Still, I’ll keep the crazy womanchild away from you.”
Shirou then managed to feel the honesty from the snarky man, considering how he heard the sound of a body being picked up and moved away from the room.
With that, the boy who wanted to become a Hero of Justice let himself get some rest.
After he managed to put Fuji-nee and Rin in separate rooms, Archer then went to stand by the knocked-out Berserker. Fortunately, Sakura seemed to have managed to read the atmosphere, excusing herself as she told him about how she wanted to watch over the two females whom he carried to separate rooms.
She also called him “Cosplayer-san” along the way, reminding Archer about his awkward attempt at maintaining his cover.
Anyway, Sakura wouldn’t be getting anything from Fuji-nee for a while, so it was likely that she wanted to visit Rin, who was still conscious and not as flopped as Fuji-nee and the kid. Some part of his blurry memories reminded him that there was something significant about Sakura and Rin as well, but he wanted to deal with the more concerning strangeness first.
Namely, it was his younger self’s unexpected Berserker Servant.
The Counter Guardian named EMIYA was puzzled by her appearance. And yes, although her earlier shamelessness in terms of nudity was an awkward sight to behold, he still managed to know that they had faced a girl whose armor hid her biological gender very well.
Also, she looked like a certain blonde woman who also had green eyes.
Knowing all that, Archer had a very strong feeling about the identity of his younger self’s Servant.
“Mordred…If that’s the case, then what happened to Arturia?”
With crossed arms, the Wrought-Iron Hero looked at the likely Knight of Treachery, thinking about the possibilities related to Arturia’s absence and Mordred’s presence.
Was Arturia summoned by someone else? Well, there was Ilya…
Ilya…A possibility worth considering…and the most likely possibility…if Ilya was lucky enough to have something as powerful as Avalon as a catalyst. If she did get Arturia, then it’s a good thing the kid and his stupid ways of trying to keep everyone safe worked well this time, as there would still be a considerable amount of trouble if Mordred went mad on Arturia, Mad Enhancement active or not.
But did the kid simply have a different catalyst, though? That was also possible, considering the Kaleidoscope, but it was something with low chances of happening, considering how his fate was so intertwined with Avalon and the woman it belonged to.
What about both of those factors being involved, then? That was also likely, but in the end, Archer was just throwing conjecture around without more solid proof.
Anyway, that was enough thinking about causes. Now was the time for thinking about the next course of action, which was much more difficult now thanks to Mordred being such an irritating Servant ever since she was summoned.
Really, bringing himself to attempt killing his younger self felt worse than killing himself now. Crazy homunculus knight had to expose Rin’s feelings for the stupid kid, making Rin even more of an idiot, and Rin coming back alive from her trip to her house and back to this place last night was practically a reward for having to deal with all the bad luck he had to deal with before that.
Even though he was a lot more cynical now, EMIYA was still the same stupid self-sacrificing idiot, and he himself knew that. Trying to kill his younger self was not that surprising to him, then, let alone worrying for fellow idiots like Rin Tohsaka.
Yes, his loved ones were important, loathe as he was to admit it yet again. Even though he had blurry memories of them, he knew that he should care for them more than he cared for himself.
Indeed, that was the way Shirou Emiya worked, cynical Archer or not.
Suddenly, there was the sound of clinking and clanking metal touching broken wood, reminding Archer of the Servant of Madness and the wrecked state of the dining room.
Hmph, if the kid couldn’t get his Servant to clean up the mess she made, then he, Archer, would get her to do it. And of course, he, Archer, would be doing cleanup as well, as he expected the crazy knight to try making even more of a mess out of spite.
He wouldn’t kill her unless she went too out of hand, but as long as that wasn’t happening, the alternate Shirou Emiya would make her suffer for wrecking a part of the beloved Emiya residence.
Besides, with the current circumstances, that was pretty much the best he could do without breaking his Master’s heart.
“Damn idiot kid…”
Anyway, it was time to talk with the crazy knight.
“Now that’s surprising,” Archer began. “I was expecting longer, considering your Master.”
Also, the alternate Shirou Emiya still wasn’t above mocking himself.
“You trying to pick a fight, you bastard?” the Berserker answered, wobbling a little as she stood to her full height…which was still considerably shorter than Archer’s.
Still, he was feeling some imposing aura from her, so she probably had the Charisma Skill.
“If you said a certain English translation of that, then I’d be saying ‘Says the bastard herself.’”
Of course, Arturia had better Charisma than Mordred. And leaving an opening to himself to get at his opponent wasn’t something he did in physical combat only.
“You trying to call me something?” the Berserker approached, sneering up at Archer as she clenched her fists and raised her shoulders.
No longer was she the polite knight from last night, indeed.
“Yeah, I spoke English,” he told her. “What, did you forget all your knightly English?”
“You don’t deserve that sort of talk from me, you insolent slave!” she shot back in English, stepping back as she summoned her sword – clearly Clarent, which her identity concealment couldn’t hide from his Tracing, but he won’t be telling her that – and pointed it at him. “And I’ll make sure to kill you slowly and painfully when I get all my strength back,” she also seethed.
“Can’t take the fact that I knew your true name so easily?” Archer replied, switching to Japanese for a while with a smrik. “Heh…looks you have bad luck made worse, then. We’re two peas in a pod, fellow insolent slave.”
A red glow then started streaming out from the front holes of her helm.
Still, Archer wasn’t fazed, for as soon as that glow streamed out, it died out quickly, and Mordred fell on all fours, as if she was in pain.
“Damn it!” she growled, and then she slammed a metal-covered fist on an undamaged part of the wooden floor, still managing to smash through it even without her Mad Enhancement. “Damn Master gave that damn command and now I’m damned for the rest of this War!”
“Alright, Mo-chan,” EMIYA sighed, fully back to speaking his native language, and then he cheekily called. “It’s time to clean up this mess now. Make sure to follow my instructions, or else I’ll give you less food for lunch. And trust me, I’m a very good cook as well.”
And as he started the cleanup, the snickering Archer ignored the roaring Berserker’s stream of curses.
Seeing her still following him anyway, although with her muttering curses, had the older Shirou thanking his younger self for doing something surprisingly smart.
Though honestly, it was hard to watch a Berserker be forced against their nature like that.
Really, watching Heracles go smash and dash, although scarier, felt more natural…
Anyway, time to focus on work…
Rin held a sigh back as she heard and saw her estranged younger sister. She was expecting something like this, considering her observations of Sakura’s interactions with Shirou Emiya at school, but she didn’t expect nor welcomed how things had gone recently.
Her blood sister wasn’t supposed to be her responsibility anymore, but there were times when Rin couldn’t help worrying and caring for her. Sakura may have become a Matou, but what she had with Rin and the rest of the Tohsakas back then were things she still cherished. It was just that she never admitted them out loud, not when she had an image to uphold for her late father’s sake.
Thinking about that, well, Rin felt even more foolish than she already was with all the impulses she acted on lately. No wonder Archer called it a chain of mistakes…
Anyway, it wasn’t the first time when Rin felt hatred for how complicated her family was with the ways of magi in their lives. She loved her father, but she also loved her mother and her sister.
Yes, Rin was used to the loneliness, but that didn’t mean that she lost her hatred for it.
And now, her nervous sister, hair and eyes now colored purple instead of black and blue, was just looking at her, as if she wasn’t sure about what to say.
Honestly, Rin also felt the same. She was just better at hiding it. She was looking up at the ceiling, face probably looking like she didn’t care for Sakura anymore.
But she did care for Sakura. Rin just didn’t want to show a lack of composure. Right now, getting roughed up by that fistfight with that Mad-Enhanced Berserker was enough, and she didn’t want to show anything more than some slowness of movement because of how her smacked limbs were being stung by pain.
And then there was Sakura’s safety in the ongoing Grail War. Damn complicated situation, indeed.
“Are you okay, Sakura?” the older sister eventually asked. She was also surprised that Sakura hadn’t left after what was probably a long while of thinking.
“E-Eh?” was the younger sister’s response.
At that, Rin felt more irritation at herself. She felt the barrier of lies she made for herself cracking, the guilt she hid deep down seeping out again.
And then she remembered healing a critically injured Shirou Emiya with the stored magic in her pendant. A part of her claimed that she did it for Sakura’s sake, but another part of her seemed to be mocking her, saying that she wanted Shirou for herself, calling it an easy way to forget her worries about Sakura.
Yeah, Rin herself did have a crush on Shirou. She still did, even though he was an idiot whom she wanted to clobber over and over, but with Sakura’s presence, the current Tohsaka head tried to set those feelings aside…even though it was more difficult to do so now.
Really, she hated her complicated feelings. Why couldn’t life be so simple?
And then there was Archer and that Berserker to worry about. She hoped that those two weren’t making a mess.
“I…I’m okay…” Rin then heard her sister say.
At that point, the older sister had found some more ease in admitting that yes, Sakura was probably lying…and not just about her condition after being threatened by that actually female Berserker.
Rin didn’t want to dive deeper into that, though. The guilt would probably grow too big for her to handle.
“Just tell me if you need help from me, okay?” the Tohsaka head then said, eyes on Sakura.
Sakura probably knew some things about the Grail War, but Rin dearly hoped that she was just a non-combatant.
After all the unfortunate events that happened ever since Shirou Emiya started to get involved in the Fifth Holy Grail War, Rin felt like her heart would end up breaking down if she ever needed to harden her heart and face Sakura as an enemy in the War.
So right now, she shouldn’t be trying to look under her younger sister’s long-sleeved clothing for signs of a Command Spell. If the older sister herself did that, then that would be a faux pas in multiple ways, not just to their relationship as blood siblings.
Considering how that sleaze named Shinji, a possible Master as well, treated Sakura at school, trying to interfere overtly would likely attract harmful attention. And of course Rin knew about the Matou magic and that decrepit old man, as she was studious…and concerned. She just didn’t like reminding herself nor talking out loud about those topics.
Well, there goes the guilt again, seeping out of the depths of her heart and messing with her mind.
And when Rin noticed Sakura sitting on the floor by the bed, hugging her knees to her face, the older sister realized that they had been sharing silence for a while. That, and they were probably angsting together as well.
Oh, who was she kidding, they were certainly angsting together.
Maybe she should wait for Sakura to speak up…but that sounded like something that didn’t fit with a good older sister’s attitude…
Sakura then noticed Rin looking when the former said her thanks, but she quickly looked down and away with embarrassment.
The older sister smiled at that.
“You’re welcome, Sakura,” she said.
“I…I’ll be going now…” Sakura replied, standing up, still looking down and away. “I’m going to check on Senpai.”
With that, the younger sister left the room.
Meanwhile, setting aside thoughts about further attempts at sibling relationship reparation for later, Rin went from thinking about taking advantage of Kirei Kotomine’s dislike for Zouken Matou to checking on Shirou Emiya, Archer, and Berserker.
And speaking of having the third-rate magus of a Master filled in some more about the Holy Grail War, Rin was still adamant on doing it herself despite protests from her petty side, which called for revenge against how he and his crazy Servant ruined her Grail War plans. Visiting the fake priest would probably make her crush stupider, considering how her guardian seemed to have a sadomasochistic streak to him.
Rin still couldn’t believe how he could survive eating a mountain of hot spice, let alone have the guts to casually offer some to her…
Anyway, it was time to check on those three idiots and her sister.
And so, Rin got off from her bed, straightening her red turtleneck and her black miniskirt before she exited the room.
Still, she felt like she was forgetting someone…
When Taiga (not “Tiger,” which she should never be called by) Fujimura woke up, her head was throbbing.
Did she drink too much again? Well, although it was her day-off, she didn’t remember going to some party or something which included alcohol the night before, so that was out…
“…Why am I on a bed in Shirou’s house?” she asked herself as her recovering senses focused on her surroundings.
But still, there was something more important that she had to think about…
“Why am I in Shirou’s house again…?” the high school English teacher then asked. “Of course there’s food, but there’s something more important I think I’m forgetting…”
It had something to do with her dizziness, that’s for sure…but what was it?
“I’m not some peasant you can order around!” an unfamiliar female voice shouted in English. And was that a British accent there?
Wait a minute…
Naked foreign girl sleeping with Shirou?
Taiga wasted no time for saving her precious little brother figure, slamming the sliding door open and charging towards her target.
“DIVINE PUNISHMENT!” the angry English teacher shouted in the language in which she specialized.
Unfortunately, the target had bent backward, avoiding Taiga’s jump kick.
Still, even if her target was now doing some really convincing knight cosplay, one which also made her feminine face have an aura of masculinity, punishment was still in order.
As long as she was under the watch of the Fujimura yakuza princess, that foreigner girl won’t be getting away with her defiling of Taiga’s dear Shirou!
“Stand still and accept your punishment!” the punisher in a green and yellow dress shouted as she went to swing punches and kicks at the armored pervert.
“Not this woman again!” the target exclaimed, jumping away with a broom in her hands.
And even though that cosplayer girl was able to dodge well, Taiga would use all her strength to –
“Alright, that’s enough, ladies,” said a deep and manly voice as the determined punisher found herself flailing her limbs wastefully, all while the back of her dress was clutched by the source of said voice.
The mentioned voice source was a tall man with tanned skin, white hair, gray eyes, and a red and gray set of fabric and metal…and if that was cosplay, then he was probably quite a rich guy as well, considering how the metal parts looked like they had the sheen of actual metal.
Also, said man had a fit figure and a chiseled face with subtle Japanese features, and strangely, he wasn’t holding the other female in his other hand.
In fact, the cosplaying foreigner girl was just held back by a hand on a broom raised to block further personal space intrusion.
“Hey, why are you making me look like the bad guy here!?” the English teacher complained, flailing her limbs some more as she uselessly tried to reach for the man who held on to her while keeping the rest of his body distant from her limbs.
“You’ve caused a mess already, and I won’t stand for all your crazy,” the annoying but kinda handsome man answered.
“But that perverted foreigner girl!” Taiga pointed, and the subject of her index finger eventually made the broomstick snap into two pieces.
“DON’T CALL ME A GIRL, YOU DUMBASS!” the foreigner girl then shouted. “I’LL FUCKING KILL YOU IF YOU SAY THAT AGAIN!”
“WELL, TRY ME, THEN!” the defending big sister figure shouted back, flailing harder.
“OH, YOU ASKED FO – Ow!”
And the enraged foreigner got a fist slamming on to the top of her head.
“Cleanup time,” the man said with closed eyes, one of them twitching. “Now. Or else you won’t be getting any good food later. Let it be known that I’m a very good cook, and the kid who owns this house can attest to that.”
“”Oh really?”” the two females doubted in unison.
“Archer, what are you doing?”
Everyone then turned to look at a very familiar girl standing in front of the shy Sakura Matou.
“Rin Tohsaka?” Taiga asked, and then, with a sheepish expression, “Oh, I’m so sorry for the disturbance here. I didn’t know that you would be visiting while a certain pervert here was trying to defile my dear Shirou.”
“Hey, what’s with that special treatment?” the foreigner girl barked. “That girl’s a witch, you know. Found out about it last night.”
“She’s way more trustworthy than you, you pervert!” Taiga barked back. “I’ll have you know that she’s a very good student of mine, and that she’s one girl I’d trust to have around Shirou!”
“Ugh…” the foreigner girl groaned, “This house is full of idiots…”
“I’m trying to get these two to help in cleaning up their mess,” the man named Archer replied to Ms. Tohsaka.
Taiga wanted to defend herself, but Rin Tohsaka’s presence was putting pressure on her. Sure, the teacher knew that she could be a little flaky at school and even crazier at home, but acting more like that in front of a very trusted honor student of a visitor – unless Ms. Tohsaka managed to was trying to seduce Shirou (because there was no way that Taiga would believe that Shirou could even make the first move on a girl) – was something she considered very humiliating, indeed.
She’d deliver justice upon that pervert, still…There was the cleanup, after all…
“I’ll help!” Taiga then declared with a raised hand and a very wide smile. “And I’ll make sure to help our perv – I mean, foreigner friend here, too!
“Well, that’s great, then,” Mr. Archer replied with a cool smile, and wow, did that show more of his handsomeness!
“I shall be helping out as well,” Ms. Tohsaka also added, and before Taiga could express how she didn’t want to add a burden on such an honorable visitor, “I also caused this mess, believe it or not. With that, I am willing to pay for replacement furniture and such.”
“I’ll help, too!” Sakura followed, making large cracks on her shyness, though she still looked like she wanted to shrivel back into her shell with the little twitches on her face.
“I think it would be a better idea if you all just stay put and leave this to me,” the tall and tan man then declared, arms crossed. “Considering the shed here, there may be some tools and materials I can use for repairs.”
“Hey, stop ignoring me, you idiots!”
And then Taiga was feeling overwhelmed, the perverted foreigner’s complaining presence not bothering her as much.
“I’m surrounded by such good people!” the teacher then cried with tears of joy.
“I said stop ignori – Ow!”
“Now get to work.”
Indeed, Taiga Fujimura was feeling the rightful service of justice!
If Kiritsugu were still alive to witness this, then Taiga was certain that he would feel so proud!
But still…she felt like she was forgetting something important…
When Shirou woke up feeling more focused, his ears picked up the rough sounds of things being moved and the distant sounds of shouts being exchanged.
Judging from the not so tense arrangement of the sounds, it seemed to be the arrangement of a bunch of people doing some housework, and not some bloodthirsty warriors in a free-for-all, which Shirou feared for a while as he walked towards the area where all those sounds came from.
“Hey, Buzzer-chan!” carried the voice of the green-and-yellow-wearing Taiga Fujimura, whom Shirou often called “Fuji-nee.”
“I told you to stop calling me that!” shouted the blonde and ponytailed girl who had introduced herself as Berserker the other night. Surprisingly, she was wearing casual clothing – an oversized white t-shirt and a pair of blue shorts, specifically.
But the most surprising in terms of appearance was Archer, who was wearing a bandana and a face mask along with his combat outfit.
“Stop bickering and help me out with moving all these broken things out!” the tall man shouted as he carried the pieces of the smashed dining table out, his voice a little muffled by his face mask, and then he noticed Shirou. “Help me out here, kid! This house won’t be fixing itself anytime soon!”
Again, Shirou had some mixed emotions. Why would someone like Archer even bother to fix his house, let alone get help for such a thing?
“Don’t worry, ’cause justice is being served, Shirou!” Fuji-nee declared to him, and then she pointed at the annoyed Servant who currently wasn’t covered in metal all over. “Just leave Buzzer-chan here to me!”
“Yeah, keep talking, Tiger!” retorted Berserker (whose nickname began to make sense to her Master) without any shame.
“Oh, you’re asking for it!”
And then the two childish females charged at each other, ending up in a deadlock as Taiga tightly held Berserker’s arms back.
As the two glared at each other with bared teeth and locked arms, Shirou went nervous as he saw Berserker’s eyes flash red, but that nervousness quickly faded into surprise as Berserker suddenly flinched and got herself pushed back and down by Fuji-nee.
“Haha!” exclaimed the woman who hated being called “Tiger.” “Victory is mine!”
“Not until you help, you don’t!” Archer shouted from an unseen but nearby area in the house.
“Ah, I’m sorry, Mr. Archer!” Fuji-nee shouted back as she kept a still glaring Berserker pinned down. “Shirou, you better help Mr. Archer out there!” Shirou’s big sister figure added with a serious look at him. “I’ll deal with this purity thief here! Ow!”
Shirou stared at the duo he was to leave behind, the foreign female biting the Japanese female’s arm.
“Uhh…where are Tohsaka and Sakura, though?” the redheaded owner of the house asked, having one more question to ask before he left the childish females behind with concern.
“We’re right here, Emiya-kun,” the twin-tailed school idol answered as she drank a cup of tea by the yard.
“Sammo-san and Archer-san told us to…to r-relax for a while…” the purple-haired junior followed, the tips of her index fingers close to each other as she gave a worried look at the scene behind her.
“Don’t…Don’t think this redeems you!” the fighting Fuji-nee replied with a grunt for a while, hitting Berserker’s face in her attempts to remove the biting girl’s teeth off. “Ugh, get off!”
“Okay…” Shirou answered with uncertainty, having difficulty with processing that question, especially while watching Fuji-nee quarreling with a Servant.
“Kid, get over here!” the redhead then heard Archer shout. “You don’t need to worry about those two, especially with how you stopped Buzzer-chan!”
“Not you too!” Berserker shouted with further irritation.
And with Archer’s words there, Shirou remembered the Command Spell he used on her, something he thought of with the heat of the moment plus what he remembered about Command Spells the other night…and the latter was something which Berserker herself told him.
How ironic, indeed.
“Shirou delivered justice!? Ooh, Kiritsugu would be so proud!”
“Whaddaya mean by ‘justice’? This is injustice, you rabid Tiger! Now get off me!”
And so, Shirou, although still concerned for the two and what trouble they could cause, moved away to help Archer out.
But a few steps into doing so, Archer walked past him, his hurried steps carrying his annoyance.
Upon Archer’s arrival at the messed-up dining room, Fuji-nee and Berserker were picked up by the backs of the upper halves of their clothing, the latter getting a smack to the back of her head before getting picked up.
Then, he turned around, and with a frowning expression…
“It’s time to get to work…or else no one will be eating today.”
Well, it was somewhat weird seeing Tohsaka’s Servant being that serious about housework, but hey, Shirou appreciated such seriousness, considering how he treated housework as well.
Still, what a morning, indeed…and he hadn’t even known why Fuji-nee and Sakura dropped by during a weekend morning yet!
“Wait a minute, WHY IS RIN TOHSAKA HERE!?”
“Finally, an idiot gets it! That’s also my cue to exit and watch everything burn!”
“Ah, so that’s why I felt like I was forgetting something…”
And that was just the beginning of a very long day.
That knight is still not worthy to be king, even if he is my son…or daughter…though she probably wouldn’t allow herself to be called as such, considering how brash she is inside the pub and within the battlefield…
“How…How am I not…worthy…?”
She can ask that, but it is too late for her already. It is too late for me as well.
“I want to be…a worthy…king…”
She still does not understand what it means to be king. Her emotions control her so much.
Yet, those emotions of hers are the subject of my envy as well. If I had become king while being so human…would the kingdom have become better?
No. I have seen how emotions have driven the kingdom apart.
But I still wish that I had never become king…
“…to be worthy…”
…for today has shown my unworthiness.
And with tears filling up and streaming out of her eyes, Ilyasviel von Einzbern woke up, lying on her bedroom in her family’s castle in the Fuyuki City forests.
“We have suffered so much, no?” she then heard her Servant say.
Ilya’s answer to that was a tearful embrace, for she didn’t know what to say in the face of what she had just witnessed in that dream.
Author’s Note: Mad Mordred has finally appeared! And complete with cussing too!
Also, this story will be told from multiple viewpoints! Complexity Increased!
So yo, I guess I didn’t really establish the implied reasoning behind the Knight of Treachery’s weird behavior during the previous chapter as clearly and smoothly as I thought…but believe it or not, I had already planned on having that OOC-ness broken down from this chapter onward even before I posted the first chapter. Still, I would like thank reviewers like Taromaru and JMP3 for reminding me of the importance of experience with the source material, which can lead to better fine control on reinterpretations of it.
Oh, and while working on this, I think I found myself growing a writing style that tends to whip between drama and comedy. I’m not sure about what to think about that yet, though.
So yeah, with that, honest constructive feedback is highly encouraged and highly appreciated!
Next Chapter: Broken Pride