You are Alberich: maiden-rescuing knight, slayer of monsters, killer of men, familiar, possible relation to the Gods, and modern hero. You've seen your home destroyed, your friends and allies scattered to the winds, and yourself crippled, but you persevered through it all in the company of those who remain loyal. Today you face your brother, a young man hell-bent on a duel to the death with you in spite of his lack of any good reason for enmity.On the night of November 13, 2019, you found yourself in a dimly lit stone basement, standing in the middle of a magic circle. You had been summoned as a Servant, a figure out of legend contracted after their death to fight alongside a magus for the Holy Grail. Unfortunately you are not a figure out of legend. You'd been the victim of a con, by none other than Judas Iscariot.Since then, you've made your way through a chain of events even stranger than those you faced before becoming a Servant. You've lost one Master and gained another on the point of death. You've slain three enemy Servants and converted four to your cause. You've met, allied with, and betrayed the survivors of the last War: a family of magi dedicated to destroying the Holy Grail. You've discovered you were never really human, and have only been alive for less than a month. You've met the two others like you, formerly 'human' compatriots in the Akeldama's War who have since been transformed into Servants. You've fallen in love with Liliesviel von Einzbern, a homunculus at the center of the Holy Grail War whose desperate need and ephemeral beauty captured your heart. You've begun to walk the path of magical knowledge, and through the use of your Noble Phantasm summoned forth two impossible existences from the Reverse Side of the World: a phantasmal beast and a goddess. You've traversed the labyrinthine inner world of a former Goddess' spirit, and had your house blown up for your trouble. Since awakening after that disaster, you've discovered the unexpected loyalty of your most recently acquired Servant, made contact with two of your scattered allies, met an old friend once more, healed yourself through a large-scale ritual utilizing the sacrifice of numerous bystanders, and finally tracked down Liliesviel just in time to save her from being killed by Assassin, who subsequently escaped.None of the experiences on this strange, winding road have changed your goal. Whatever the purpose or origin of your life, and regardless of who stands in your way, there is only one path before you. You will take the Holy Grail with your own hands. Four Servants remain to fall by your sword.PDF of the quest up to now:File attached to the next post. Fate/City Akeldama, the first part of the story, is only in the archive.Archive of Previous Threads:http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=Sweets-Loving%20QMStatus Information:https://pastebin.com/qsKX4p5bQM Twitter:https://twitter.com/SweetsQM
The attached PDF contains all of Fate/Awakening Mirror up to the end of the previous thread.
You heave a sigh. More than ever, the only emotion you seem able to feel for Matsuda is a mixture of pity and contempt. This last outburst of blind rage at the deaths in Tokyo, the Church's involvement, and Harris' planning seems utterly asinine, coming from one who has at one time or another been a knowing pawn in the schemes of Harris and Father Antaglio both. He's obviously never given any serious consideration to the notion of becoming your ally again; to top it all, he now presents his attempt to kill you as 'not letting them get to you', as though he were here to save your life instead of trying to take it. Matsuda, you realize, has made an aimless waste of his entire existence, when he could at any time have been directed to some useful and productive purpose by your will. Pathetic; contemptible; disappointing. You can't even be angry at him. You allow your eyes to close briefly as the extent of your disappointment in Matsuda washes over you. Then opening them, at length you begin to speak."You seem to believe you are doing me a favor by making an attempt on my life," you observe, your tone full of bitterness. "Very well. This place is deserted enough. I'll return it, and put an end to your sorry mess of an existence." With that, you materialize your armor and take Heiligöffnungschwert in your right hand. Before your helmet appears, though, as if as an afterthought, you continue, "But then, I suppose I should thank you for at least coming forward to face me and conclude our conflict rather than skulking in the shadows as so many others have. It would be a bit of a shame if the only compensation I have for you is to give you death on your own terms. Do you have some last request for me to carry out, after I've finished with you? I may see to it, if it seems worthwhile.""Yer real confident, aren't ya? I dunno what kinda special trick ya got up yer sleeve, but I didn't come here just ta roll over and die," Matsuda replies, meeting your bitter resignation with a ferocious grin. "But last wishes, huh? Sure." Suddenly his expression takes on a more grave cast as he answers seriously, "If you're the one who walks outta here, Kaichou, I want you ta promise me two things. Don't let anybody else kill ya, first, and keep this city from endin' up like that empty one in there. Y'understand? It's bad enough already, what's happened to Tokyo. Don't let it get any worse."
Your lips quirk into a smile at this. Suddenly mirthful, you restrain yourself from laughing outright at Matsuda and acidly call, "Oh, fine, fine! What wonderful philanthropic sentiments from this juvenile delinquent! You've spent your whole life doing nothing but chasing senselessly after battle, and now you're here to kill me, but your last wish is to selflessly save the people of Tokyo! Wonderful! Of course you couldn't do anything to that end yourself, but it's all well and good to leave it to me after you die." Your own mocking words drive the gravity of Matsuda's betrayal of the family ties he should have recognized home again to you, and suddenly all the rage that had cooled surges up in you again. "Enough!" you spit, materializing your helmet to hide a face twisted into a furious snarl behind the similar expression of the steel lion's head. As you raise your blade into a ready stance, Matsuda lowers the tip of his spear. In an instant all relaxation has vanished from the postures of each of you, and you're ready for the first strike, sizing one another up with careful, analytical eyes. Matsuda has one foot drawn back from the other, exposing a narrow front to your blade, and his spear is angled low. The tip is almost level with his ankle, while the haft rises up behind. You can see that he's made ready for a counter; if you charge in, he'll fade a half step back and spin that blade up to your throat, trying to break your gorget with the power of your own charge. On the other hand, if you let him make the first strike, he'll likely leverage his superior speed to dart right or left and attack from a blind spot. You're not slow enough now that you couldn't follow his motion, but countering could be troublesome all the same.In the stillness of the deserted platform, the distant noise of a moving train in the tunnel on your right breaks the silence, but none makes its appearance. Matsuda twitches; a reaction, or bait to tempt you into an attack?>[ ] Charge with a thrust. Let him try his counter, and see what good it does him. Matsuda will learn you aren't so easily put down when you have your fill of magical energy.>[ ] Advance, but not to attack. Try to get Matsuda into close quarters, keep the pressure on, and look for your opportunity. It will only take one clash of your weapons to finish this.>[ ] Remain on the defensive, and spread tendrils of Nothingness out in the shadows about your feet. Matsuda will be looking for a counter from your blade, so magic should be the ideal way of tripping him up.>[ ] Give Matsuda a surprise, and use your magic to tear open the ceiling above his head. You should be able to cut him down easily while he's working to avoid the shower of masonry.>[ ] Do something else. (Write in)
>>4441668>[ ] Advance, but not to attack. Try to get Matsuda into close quarters, keep the pressure on, and look for your opportunity. It will only take one clash of your weapons to finish this.
>>4441668>Advance, but not to attack. Try to get Matsuda into close quarters, keep the pressure on, and look for your opportunity. It will only take one clash of your weapons to finish this.We're approaching him.
Hold on, wasn't the last vote tied before we fell off the board?I could have sworn it was.
>>4441848There was a great deal of going back and forth, but at the end when I announced the hiatus there was a one-vote lead for attacking Matsuda.All the same, if you'd like to vote for a write-in inserting some dialogue into the battle, you're always free to try your luck.
>>4441877I checked, and I think it was actually tied.Whatever.
>>4441668>[ ] Advance, but not to attack. Try to get Matsuda into close quarters, keep the pressure on, and look for your opportunity. It will only take one clash of your weapons to finish this.Glad to see you back Sweets.
>>4441901Thanks, anon. This time I don't intend to disappear 'til the story's over and done.
>>4441668>>[ ] Advance, but not to attack. Try to get Matsuda into close quarters, keep the pressure on, and look for your opportunity. It will only take one clash of your weapons to finish this."Oh, you choose to stay where you are. Instead of charging towards me, you intend to hold your ground."
>>4441668>[ ] Advance, but not to attack. Try to get Matsuda into close quarters, keep the pressure on, and look for your opportunity. It will only take one clash of your weapons to finish this.Good to have you back; way I see it consensus has the right of it, best not to bait out a counter from a guy whose specced for close combat and previous attempts magic have ended poorly for us.
>>4442023"It'll be easier to cut you to bits again when you try to close the distance"
For the third time, you face in Matsuda an enemy faster and more skillful than yourself. For the first time, however, you have a justified certainty that these advantages will be of no help to him. They are no longer overwhelming, but have become slight enough that your own advantages of strength, resilience, and a blade which will disarm him at the first clash of weapons now put the balance of power completely in your favor. There's no need, you reflect, to make a reckless charge, wait and defend yourself, or try some carefully considered magical trick. Here the simplest course is best; you need only methodically approach Matsuda, observe his movements carefully, and strike when the time is right.So, keeping Heiligöffnungschwert outstretched and at the center of your silhouette, capable of responding with equal speed to an approach from any angle, you begin to walk toward Matsuda with long, even, strides and an outward appearance almost of calm relaxation. Your eyes, however, remain utterly focused on Matsuda's posture, just as his are on your own. As you continue to close the distance, a battle begins to play out in suggestion. Matsuda's blade moves a millimeter to the left, his body shifting to presage darting forward for an attack in that direction. As you begin to react, bringing the tip of your sword a hair's breadth in that direction as the beginning of a move to intercept the foreseen attack, Matsuda reverses his own movement. Now he shifts his feet in preparation to dive low and strike from below; again you twitch your sword-point downward, suggesting a counter, and again the attack ends before it begins. Hundreds of such minute exchanges, the beginnings of mutually read movements, too small and too fast to be seen by the untrained eye, occur over the seconds as you pace gradually toward your enemy. Over and over he seeks to begin an attack faster and more subtly than you can catch; over and over you respond, demonstrating you've seen it; and through it all the slow sound of your boots on the cement, tapping out the seconds like the ticking of a countdown to your approach."You must see how futile this is, Matsuda," you remark at length. Only a few steps remain now, before you'll be close enough to strike if your foe doesn't change his position. "You had the skill and the speed to avoid my blade completely before, but that gap has narrowed too much, and now you daren't make an attack because if I successfully block it will mean the end for you." Without waiting for a response you shake your head, as if saddened by the pathetic state of affairs, and continue, "You could certainly outpace me if you fled down the corridor behind you and went searching for an exit. You might have a chance, too, if you attacked me from ambush. You met me here to make a head-on attack, though, and that's simply impossible for you."
"Maybe you're right, Kaichou," Matsuda replies, giving you an uncharacteristically bashful smile. "I was hopin' we could settle this simple, out in the open, but I can't just let ya win without even hittin' ya." He could hardly have given you a more perfect answer if you'd told him what to say, you think; now he'll try to retreat, just as he did on your first encounter, and in the process break his stance. That will be your moment. You're close enough now to catch him, you're certain of it. Sure enough, no sooner has Matsuda finished speaking than he springs back into the shadowed corridor from which he first emerged to face you, fast fading from sight as he flees; with your full strength you leap to the chase, summoning up all the speed at your disposal to catch the wretched fool before he can escape. You don't need to worry about him taking you by surprise in that corridor, you can still feel his presence fleeing even with Matsuda out of your vision. In another moment, though, you freeze. As soon as you've drawn close enough to the doorway Matsuda just disappeared through to see down the hall, you find him gone. Not only can you not see him, there's no more sound of movement, and his presence can no longer be felt at any distinct point. Far from fleeing down the corridor, Matsuda's magical energy seems almost to have disappeared; and at the same time you can feel traces of a Servan't energy all around you. Then it hits you: Circe. He was buying time for her to prepare some magical attack, and when ready she teleported him away! You were duped by the very person you thought an idiot just moments ago! You can't guess how they came to form an alliance, but they must've had time enough after the burning of the Shijou manor, and it's the only explanation of this simultaneous disappearance of Matsuda and appearance of a Servant's diffuse energy that makes sense. You think of trying to avoid the attack at first, but the area filled with energy is too large; whatever Circe is preparing, it's massive. Instead you turn on your heel and as quickly as you'd moved to pursue Matsuda you now fly back toward Liliesviel; the only thing to be done now is to shield her with your magic resistance!"Yún Cáng Lóng"
At the sound of that yell, in Matsuda's voice, you're stopped one more time by a flash of red-hot pain and the distinct crash of breaking steel. A shining silvery point sprouts suddenly from your neck, visible as it juts out below your chin. The presence all around you is gone, and you feel the infuriating weight of a young man standing on your shoulders, his spear driven through your throat from above and behind. Liliesviel screams your name, a look of horrified grief twisting her features as her high, crystalline voice echoes through the underground chamber, while Adelheid lets loose an inarticulate shout of fury. You understand everything in an instant. The disappearance, the energy spread through the area, it must all have been part of Matsuda's Noble Phantasm. Now, presumably, he thinks he's won; but you're still standing.Before Matsuda can change his position again, before Adelheid or Liliesviel can take action to 'avenge' you, you whip Heiligöffnungschwert around and drive its point up over your left shoulder, into the place where you know from his weight that the core of Matsuda's body must be. The reward of your unlooked-for counterattack is the well-recognized sound of a blade cleaving smoothly through flesh, a startled grunt, and the end of the weight on you as Matsuda suddenly loses his balance to fall, disarmed, to the floor behind you. You turn, your movements made a bit awkward by the polearm sticking out of you, to examine your fallen enemy. Matsuda is on his back and seemingly, his robes stained with blood, but still grinning up at you. Though you're both bleeding freely now, he seems to have the worse time of it. The wound is a bad one; from the way you drove your blade straight upwards, and the position of the gash, you can guess you most likely pierced a lung as well as his guts. Moreover his magical energy is so depleted, and his presence so thin, that he seems likely to vanish at any moment. Already he feels more like some hollowed out fragment of a Servant than the genuine article. You, by contrast, are taking the spear in your throat quite well after the initial shock. The wound will certainly heal with some magical energy once you've removed the weapon. This you do, reaching back above your neck to grab the haft and pull it free with your left hand, then tossing it to the ground a short distance away."Heh heh heh." Matsuda lets out a pained chuckle as he watches this unfold, drawing your attention back to the dying Servant. "You've gotten ta be one hell of a badass, ya know that, Kaichou?" The question is asked with such genuine warmth that if you didn't know Matsuda you could hardly believe it came from a man who'd just tried to kill you."Yes, I can take quite a bit of punishment now," you agree dryly, "but not you. That was a bee sting, wasn't it? You'd be dying now even if I hadn't struck back, from lack of energy."
"Ya can tell, huh?" Matsuda nods weakly. "Yeah, after I told Harris I was doin' my own thing whether he liked it or not, he cut me off. Said if I couldn't do something productive and make it back with the energy I had, I was too incompetent to keep givin' his energy to anyway, and he'd be better off after I'd disappeared. So I guess this is it fer me. End o' tha line. I put it all inta that attack, and you took it and won anyway. The badass way..." He trails off, his eyes beginning to become glassy. It occurs to you, however, that this may not be 'it'. As he is now, Matsuda's spiritual composition is so compromised that he's in a position somewhat similar to the Servants Kōrakuhime prepared for you to take control of by magic. Perhaps, with some careful alteration of your typical Absorption work, you can make new use of Matsuda after all...>[ ] Try to accomplish something similar to the Shijou sacrificial ritual, breaking Matsuda down into energy and taking it into yourself.>[ ] Try to accomplish something similar to the curse of control, shoring up Matsuda's existence with some of your own energy and giving him new life as your subordinate Servant.>[ ] No, you'll have nothing more to do with this wretched idiot. Finish him with your blade and have done with the affair.>[ ] Attempt something else. (Write in)
>>4443156>>[ ] Try to accomplish something similar to the curse of control, shoring up Matsuda's existence with some of your own energy and giving him new life as your subordinate Servant.I'd rather we didn't murder him now that we've proved how much better we are.We sure are lucky that he's just a shittier Diarmuid, otherwise we would have fucking died.Time to see if we can tone down the murderhobo tendencies for once.Probably not.
>>4443156Couldn't we have Ilya supply him with energy? I'm not keen on putting more strain on Ayaka.
>>4443220>IlyaFuck. Meant Lily.
>>4443156[ ] Try to accomplish something similar to the Shijou sacrificial ritual, breaking Matsuda down into energy and taking it into yourself.It would be incredibly useful if we could make use of this technique with our own magecraft.As for Matsuda, he died satisfied, and it would be ill advised to make a servant out of someone so willful and self destructive.
>>4443156>[X] Attempt something else. (Write in)>[X] Try to accomplish something similar to the Shijou sacrificial ritual, breaking Matsuda down into energy and taking it into yourself.>As a secondary objective, recalling the sensation of moving into Medusa's inner world, try to pull Matsuda's soul into your own.I would like it if Matsuda could keep Judas company in Alberich's mental world.
>>4443156>[X] Try to accomplish something similar to the Shijou sacrificial ritual, breaking Matsuda down into energy and taking it into yourself.I won't deny death to somebody who wants to die. At least if they're not Harris.
>>4443220>>4443225She would be very sad you made that slip, anon.You can see about setting a connection up later, but you'll have to put some of your own energy into keeping him alive in the moment.>>4443398Out of curiosity, what do you plan on doing with Harris?
>>4443156>>[ ] Try to accomplish something similar to the Shijou sacrificial ritual, breaking Matsuda down into energy and taking it into yourselfGoing with this, guy got the good death he wanted, no sense ruining the moment and robbing of that, could almost back passing on the upgrade had it been out of respect than disgust.
>>4443156>[ ] Try to accomplish something similar to the Shijou sacrificial ritual, breaking Matsuda down into energy and taking it into yourself
Apparently I should just never make promises based around time regarding this quest. Now that I'm not constantly working and have time to write, a heavy layer of smoke from all the fires nearby has settled on the area around my home and I'm finding it more and more difficult to actually do so. I am trying to write at the moment, but figured you folks ought to know I might not be able to get an update done tonight.
>>4444555Thats fine take care
>>4444555>living in Californiaabsolutely disgusting
>>4444628Believe me, I feel the same. My work keeps me here, though. It is what it is.
>>4444555Work, acts of god, alien invasion, so long as you plan to keep things going and keep yourself safe and most of us here can give you all the time you need.
>>4444555Sweets... Come on man.
I wonder if Sakura ran into Kama on the reverse side yet
"No," you murmur, "I don't think it is the end of the line for you, Matsuda. Not entirely; you can go on existing, in a manner of speaking, as part of something greater." With a sardonic smile you add, "After all, the survivor of the Akeldama was always meant to feed on the sacrifice of the others. It's only reasonable that I should continue that process now." You reach down and grab Matsuda by the collar, pulling him up to bring his face level with your own. The dying eyes seem no longer able to focus on yours, but that's of no consequence. You're not looking at his outward aspect either, but inspecting the magical underpinnings of this existence. As you gaze into Matsuda's form, eyes working in concert with that sixth sense that is attuned to mystic energy, your perspective gradually shifts until you see before you not the being you were recently battling and conversing with, but the magical construct that is the true nature of the Servant, now almost hollow of energy and wavering in the interstice between existence and disappearance. With this altered perspective, you can go to work at taking Matsuda's being into your power. You open the door within yourself, form the Od of Emptiness within you into the shape of Absorption, and begin pouring it into the magical construct you hold before you. There's a trace of resistance, where the strong will of the Servant must once have been able to fight off such incursions of control, but in Matsuda's dying state that will has very little power; what gives you a greater challenge is the sheer complexity of the construct that is the basic form of a Servant. This is no simple usurpation of magic to freeze air in place. Taking control of the energy that makes up Matsuda's body is an effort akin to filling the interior space of a fractal with ink; the closer you seem to completing the task, the more tiny detail's of the construct's ineffable complexity reveal themselves to you, demanding your attention.At last the thing is done. In your depth of concentration you're not sure how long it took, only that it seemed endless and left you feeling drained and weak; stabilizing Matsuda while you took control must have been relatively quick, since he'd have faded away otherwise, but beyond that you can't be sure. Now, though, the composition of his existence is finally in your power, and his consciousness as a being is quite gone. It's time for the final step. With one deceptively swift force of will you wipe away the Servant construct, reducing Matsuda to pure energy and taking him into yourself, much as Bloodfort Andromeda did to those humans within it. Before your eyes, the young man you briefly thought of as a brother dissolves into a hazy mass of shimmering golden light and flows into you.Status Updated
When it comes to it, there's surprisingly little energy to Matsuda; enough to heal your wound, dispel the weakness brought upon you by your exertion, and improve yourself in the areas most lacking by comparison with him, but all the same that leaves the whole energy of his existence only equal to the fraction of Achilles' soul which you received on his defeat. Matsuda, you reflect, must truly have been made up of the least part of the Akeldama's power even before being weakened by his self-destructive final technique. That this is all his soul amounts to in the end strikes you as more than a little pitiful, though not out of keeping with the life of a petty thug.Still, there's no point in brooding over the death of Matsuda. Coming out of your focus, you return your attention to the outside world and those who have come with you; it gives you a start to see they're now standing right beside you. At some point while you were working on Matsuda, Liliesviel and Adelheid must have drawn near to observe the process more closely, but it seems they didn't make any noise that might have disturbed you. "Well," you begin, speaking to break the silence rather than because you have anything meaningful to say, "that's the end of him. Shall we go? I'm sure Kikuko is waiting.""You absorbed him completely," Liliesviel breathes, not seeming to hear your remark. She's staring wide-eyed at the hand that held Matsuda up until a few moments ago, an expression of complete shock on her face."Indeed," you reply casually. "Are you so surprised? With Matsuda so thoroughly weakened, I thought I'd experiment with a more complete consumption of his power than I've been able to enjoy with the Servants I've defeated until now.""Yes, but..." Liliesviel takes a few moments to find her words, seemingly trying to compose herself, then suddenly shifts into a pout, lips pressed together and white cheeks beginning to color as she declares, "You didn't leave any for me! You absorbed his whole soul, like the Lesser Grail! What are you trying to do, Alberich?""To defeat Odin, of course," you answer with good humor, giving the girl a conciliatory smile. "The moment he dies, we'll be able to complete the Heaven's Feel, isn't that so? In that case, it really doesn't matter what happens to the other Servants.""No, I suppose it doesn't," Liliesviel admits hesitantly, "and the fifth would've been difficult," she adds under her breath. "Still! I'd like it if you talked things like this over with me first from now on. It really took me by surprise, I'll have you know."
"Of course," you nod, stifling the reply that as she'll certainly end up agreeing with you in any case there's little purpose in the exercise. While you may be sure of that, bluntly saying it to Liliesviel is hardly wise. At least Adelheid doesn't seem to have any issue with your handling of the defeated enemy. Indeed, she seems only slightly interested in the discussion, and is fixedly watching the exit. >[ ] While you're on the subject of the Heaven's Feel, there is one thing you'd like to discuss with Liliesviel. Bring up Medusa's concerns.>[ ] You've spent quite enough time in this subway station. Make your way up to the street to find Kikuko and her candidate for your sister.>[ ] Say or do something else. (Write in)
Not much of an update, I realize, but I'm still pretty out of it and figured it'd be better to get something written than go another day with nothing. Hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to do something higher quality.
>>4446969>[ ] While you're on the subject of the Heaven's Feel, there is one thing you'd like to discuss with Liliesviel. Bring up Medusa's concerns.
inb4 we have 2/3rds of Judas' soul inside of now
I hope you're happy.I'm out though. It's all waifufaggotry and murderhoboing from here out.Not that I expected anything better from the players left in this quest.
>>4446976It would've been fun to keep Matsuda around as a character, but it seems like it wasn't to be. Sorry you weren't happy with how things turned out, anon.
>>4446983Nothing in this quest is fun for me anymore. It's just long delays (not your fault I know), your fucking 20 IQ players obviously samefagging the votes and disappointing outcomes from the samefagged votes.I just can't read this quest anymore.It was the anons that made up half of my enjoyment of this quest, and now they've been replaced by waifufaggots that never discuss anything.Never make anything. Fuck!Sorry, Sweets.
>>4446987The quest has certainly been something of a slow trainwreck as far as player count and investment is concerned. I just hope my next creative outing works out better. OC, more obvious route signposting, less broken protagonist abilities, yadda yadda. There are a million things to be improved.
>>4446969>>[ ] While you're on the subject of the Heaven's Feel, there is one thing you'd like to discuss with Liliesviel. Bring up Medusa's concerns.Since we're supposed to be short on time and Adelheid doesn't seem to have too much interest in this conversation, kinda tempted to send her ahead to keep "Korakuhime's" attention while we discuss things here but there's still a fair amount of ways I can foresee that could end up going wrong too.
>>4446987Damn shame; to he honest I might've flipped if I could've heard some arguments to keep him around, but as is it seemed the guy wanted to die, forcing the issue would've lead to him resenting us when our faction's already a powderkeg, and as presented seemed if we did it would've been out of a desire to control rather than any kind of empathy or sentimentality.Still not fully satisfied because I would've liked some kind of mourning or acknowledgment of the fratricide although that has less to do with Sweet's writing ability and more with the lack of discussion on if we should have it in here after the direction prior player choices on characterization has pushed us.Still, long term i'd like to see if we can turn Alberich's personality around/make him less of a complete sociopath but as is it seems like 'waifufagging' is really the only way to push things in that direction considering how our last big attempt at building relationships with the other accumulated members of our party turned out.
>>4447039You want to turn Alberich from the path of sociopathy he's on yet supported him killing his own brother in cold blood?!What the fuck is wrong with you?!He wanted to die?He had no hope and nothing to live for!Just because he chose to die on his own terms rather than die as a slave doesn't mean he was a fucking death seeker!Fuck!This fucking stupidity is exactly what I'm talking about. This is why I can't be bothered with this quest anymore.
>>4447048Yeah self defeating I know, I tend to over rely on other people's input to refine my ideas but as I said, I could've been talked out of it if I could hear some good reasoning why he's not going to just be another name to our collection, how it's not going to just have him continue being a slave under yet another master when as presented that would've been the main motive behind it after Matsuda repeatedly damaged Alberich's ego and how that's supposed to give him a new reason to live.Players do need to start discussing our actions more but players have been vocally pushing to just end Matsuda ever since he put us in the wheelchair largely uncontested, in this case if you wanted us to save him it was your responsibility to start that conversation to convince people yet despite being the first vote and we ended up getting extra time we don't hear from you again until after the results are out, I don't know whats going on on your end but you cant count on the majority to contest their own vote.
>>4447108Why bother? I would've just been wasting my time from what I've seen of this quest now. Discussion hardly if ever happens in this quest.All I would've been doing is spewing words to the wind. Alberich as a character is a complete lost cause, especially with you lot in control of him.
>>4447132You say it would be useless but in the last thread there were enough people to contest the vote to simply fight Matsuda.
>>4447145Yeah, there were a lot of 1 post votes on that vote. Guess the samefag didn't stick around for the new thread.I'd say it's a shame, but I wouldn't have wanted to win like that anyway,It's so fucking annoying that the vote that seemed to definitively be what killed this quest's popularity (deciding whether to kill Medusa or not) was so heavily samefagged and Sweets didn't even fucking care.All those one post IDs coming out in favour of not killing her. The samefags ran rampant on this quest, I swear.Now look what we've got left.
>>4447150I feel like getting angry at samefags is just self-defeating. Some QMs obsess over them to an almost insane degree and end up alienating actual players because of it. Maybe not killing Medusa was the decision that hurt the quest most, but ultimately that lies in how I dealt with the consequences of that choice, not the choice itself. I overestimated the interest people would have in the island arc and healing arc.At this point, what I really find myself questioning is whether there'll be a Part 3. I had thought it was inevitable at one point that I'd need a third arc after the war to tie up Alberich's story, but considering the state of the quest now I'm not sure anymore.
>>4447191So you're questioning whether or not Alberich's story will be complete when the Grail War ends?What about the way the quest has gone has made you question something you once thought was completely necessary?
>>4447150You to accuse us of being murderhoboing samefags who never discuss our actions but use the outcome of sparing Medusa as your evidence; as I recall wasn't there also just as many one posts trying to get us to spare Shirou and then trying to kill her after they lost, none of whom even tried to rationalize their reasons for beyond insulting their opposition?The main difference between before and now is we lost angry anon who despite his frequent sperging could at least get a conversation going whether for or against but same time you can't really say that kind of toxicity was going to draw new players in.>>4447191I hope not, said I might not be fully satisfied but I still enjoy them, trouble right now is we players need to get the conversation going on what we want to happen instead of riding things out hoping things'll turn out the way how we want. After all if you could read minds i'm sure there's better uses for it than here (therapy, legal, politics, Vegas card counting...)
>>4446969>[ ] While you're on the subject of the Heaven's Feel, there is one thing you'd like to discuss with Liliesviel. Bring up Medusa's concerns.Shouldn't we also bring up Kourakuhime's premonition about the grail being cracked and leaking to empty if we haven't already? I think Odin may have made that inevitable if it's a greater-grail defect since he's turtling in front of it and upon his death it's going to activate.ODIN-OJISAN, TEMEEEEEEEE!>>4446976>>4447150Feels bad imagining how far ahead we'd be if we had Ayaka set up her circle and gutted Medusa. Probably could've made it to "Part 3" by now.And I'll have you know the only waifu I have any intention of simping for is Ayaka (and possibly by extension Hecate). Your charge of murderhoboing is more on-the-money because I'd gladly throw Alter into the blender before fighting Odin if I could get away with it. Power must be consolidated before the final boss fight by its very design.
>>4447191Honestly, a Part 3 of this quest seems doomed to me. The introduction of yet more antagonists and supporting characters this late in the game isn't going to make for a compelling story.As it is, I can't even remember the name of that guy from the Church.Not Antaglio, the other guy.And really, where do you go after Odin? Do you go into FGO levels of silliness and fight Arjuna possessed by the entire Indian Pantheon, or maybe Zeus after stealing the abilities of the entire Greek Pantheon (who is also a robot)? Do we fight Zelretch? Counter Guardians? Types?None of these sound particularly appealing, but after you decide that Odin ought to be the major antagonist, then for any villain to appear after him will require major powerscaling, or for Alberich to be depowered after everything is all said and done.Powerscaling will make things just get silly (Robot Zeus and his ANTI SOLAR SYSTEM rank attacks)And depowering will make any antagonist that shows up seem like side villains. Already (presumably) defeated Odin, after all.
>>4447219>What about the way the quest has gone has made you question something you once thought was completely necessary?A combination of a few different things: the fact that Alberich's character development hasn't really gone the way I thought it would, players have consistently decreased over time making it questionable whether or not Part 3 would be able to run, and the points anon raised in >>4447240. I've had several different ideas for how Inverse Moon could go, and they all run into these kinds of problems. I can't really go into detail without potential spoilers, but that's the gist.>>4447240Father Velasco Leoncio Miguel de Narváez? I can't imagine why you'd have a hard time remembering his name.
>>4447224>angry anonIf memory serves that faggot was half the reason we got into the Medusa-island mess. Didn't he hold the position that we should both spare/enslave Shirou and spam Bloodfort for upgrades? That's some Morgoth-tier evil right there.Good riddance.>>4447251Well shoot, I was hoping at least to get something like a less hands-on epilogue if Alberich survives the war.
>>4447240Going by what I half expected to happen: players finally accomplish 'AoG' plan and somehow rip open a stable doorway to IN realm, failed to account that very few of those on the other side would have any form of loyalty to the guy who opened if the rift is stable instead of trying to carve up the earth for themselves(probably with us getting played by some combination of Odin, that god envoy when we got HFS, hell maybe Hecate or Circe) at same time we got to deal with an alliance of counter guardians, the church, and the mage association after us/trying to hold onto the old world and that's not even counting how our companions will feel about the current situation. Idk sounds fun to me at least.
>>4447260>that god envoy when we got HFSWhat? Are you referring to when Rushorou got turned into a Saber or something else?
>>4447256You'll get an epilogue at the very least. I'm not just going to go, "And so the 6th Holy Grail War is over, True End. Be sure to come back for Menchi Tuyo!" Even if I had to end the quest tomorrow because nobody voted I'd still take the time to write up an epilogue. I'm just no longer sure whether it's possible to run an entire quest about Alberich immediately following this one.
>>4447260Yeah, that's the sort of thing that could literally never happen based on the rules of how Fate and the Nasuverse as a whole work. If something like was going to happen, then the Counter Guardians would've already made their move, or the Counter Force would've ensured Ayaka's death to get rid of Alberich.Also, an alliance of Counter Guardians?Har har har har.No, if they got involved at all they would immediately eviscerate Alberich and all of his allies.And if they didn't, Alberich would be a character who was now so strong that it would be the Fate equivalent of One Punch Man.If you want to know how dangerous Counter Guardians are, Dark Sakura was mentioned as having 1,000,000,000,000 units of magical energy within her body. Putting her on the level of a Counter Guardian, her only problem being her output was limited by her body. To put that number into perspective, Rider's Pegasus, an A+ rank Noble Phantasm, has 2500 units of magical energy.Now, keep in mind that Counter Guardians wouldn't suffer that output problem, and you will quickly realize just how broken Counter Guardians actually are.Also feel free to remember that Counter Guardians operate outside of time and are very much Alaya's nuclear option.
>>4447266Talking about that one from when we absorbed Roland and merged Durandal with our sword, the one who said something about how they consider our new sword a 'gift' to be used to help them (been a while since read last)Granted at one point I was expecting if we get depowered because Judas expels us from our body as a scrub human if we end up choosing to incarnate but then I realized that's just copying FGO's Goetia and i'd like to see something new.
>>4447280And yet that's exactly who we're going to be dealing with assuming players somehow manage to accomplish it, if things end up that way im sure you can enjoy watching this gaggle of idiots getting our shit pushed in by a group of people on level with Dark Sakura and that assumes they'll all be coming after us and not closing the rift (on the off chance that killing us wont)/dealing with whatever shit this jailbreak caused. Frankly i'm less concerned with the idea of us becoming invincible than whether we can continue to greedily absorb mana indefinitely with no long term adverse effects to us.
>>4447307>on level with Dark Sakura No no no.Not on level with Dark Sakura. Dark Sakura is limited to her body's normal output of 1000 units.Alberich would actually have to go up against opponents roughly a billion times more dangerous than Dark Sakura.
>>4447277It'd have to be a completely different story with a very different Alberich. Alive, but depowered, on the run, and after taking a seriously blow to his pride after losing what he cares about in the finale of this chapter. I'd read the fuck out of that.
>>4447321See, that's one of the ideas I had been tossing around but nixed on account of the massive player backlash I assume it'd cause. Good to hear there's at least one person interested in that kind of quest. It's always possible you folks could make a major mistake in the War and not get a Tiger Dojo, after all.
>>4447315You're telling me on Redman's dayjob, he's hundreds of millions of times more powerful than when he's a Servant? I guess these guys live up to their name as the mechanism for a GM to say "Rocks fall, everyone dies".>>4447321I would as well, provided Alberich wouldn't spontaneously die when lacking external energy input. I might go bonkers if I had to play a character who's both lacking in the most basic form of self-sufficiency AND weak again on top of that.
>>4447325I'm up for whatever so long as the writing's good, take things in whichever direction you like so long as it makes sense and it feels like the outcome we 'earned'.
>>4447325It could even lead to a form of redemption or at least becoming an antihero instead of an overpowered villain.
>>4447325I think were getting more backlash with Alberich as a powerful villain than we would if he became an underdog who lost everything and is trying to make things right.
Antihero Alberich would have been better but nobody wanted to do Duty and always went Pride because "muh DIO". Duty/Compassion would have made us a group-oriented pragmatist, rather than... this.
Hell, we could probably have played something like an ANTI-Villain with Duty/Compassion.
>>4447462Every time you've lost anything in this quest the backlash has been pretty immense, so I'm going to reserve judgment on that. Not saying it isn't possible for that outcome to happen, but I'm fully expecting some folks to be quite vocally mad about it.Also were you planning to vote here, or...
ETA for the next update will be tomorrow. Should be a longer one.
>>4448976I've been trying to write this update in all of my free time since I posted that. It hasn't happened yet. I'm not going to make another ETA promise, but be aware that although I've been going through a rough patch with output for some time now I'm not actually giving up or dropping the quest.
>>4451104Something something promise something something can't keep it:D
She's dead, jim.
I mean, at least this way we can't be disappointed by the ending.
>>4455583Maybe it's for the best.
>>4454384>>4455469>>4455583>>4455725>1 post by this ID
>>4455732Sweets should at least keep everyone informed as to what's going on.The only thing worse than hiatuses are unannounced and unexplained hiatuses.Unless he actually has dropped the quest.
>>4455741At a certain point it feels like continuing to offer the same explanation is sort of pointless. I'm trying to continue the quest, but I'm suffering from writer's block. I'm not in a planned hiatus, and I haven't chosen to drop the quest; I will update as soon as I am able, but at the moment I can't say whether that will be later today, tomorrow, or at some other point in the future. All apologies I can't give you folks something more concrete.
>>4455732Actually I lurk most of the time. Sorry.
>>4456576Weren't you the anon who was convinced Sweets is actually a loli?You're a funny fellow.
>>4455759For all of my grumblings about this quest, i do want to see it finish if for nothing else that i'm determined to see the damn thing to a conclusion. It deserves that at least. Take your time Sweets and don't worry about anon's shitpostings.>>4455732I've played/lurked Awakening Mirror since thread 1. Can't blame you though.
>10 days since last update
The fifth would be difficult? For a moment you wonder what she could mean by that, but the answer occurs to you quickly enough. Matsuda would've been the fifth Servant for Liliesviel to consume as the Lesser Grail. You hadn't previously considered it, but you suppose now that there must be some element of conscious effort in managing the souls necessary for the Heaven's Feel, and such challenge would naturally mount with their increasing number. In any case it's something of a moot point, considering the mammoth quantity of energy Odin can supply. While your mind lingers on the operations of the Lesser Grail, though, you're reminded of the concern Medusa raised this morning, about Liliesviel potentially not surviving the ritual. Now, you decide, would make as good a time as any to ask her for clarification. "Liliesviel," you begin softly, concern insinuating its way into your voice, "is there anything you haven't told me about the Heaven's Feel, and the ritual necessary to obtain the Third Sorcery?""Yes, of course." Liliesviel's matter-of-fact reply stuns you for a moment; seeing your surprise, she hurries to explain, "I can't tell you every detail of the mystery, Alberich. I've spent my entire life preparing to enact it, and I can't just hand all that information to you in an evening.""Of course not," you reply, breathing out a hopefully inaudible sigh. "However, I should surely know the most important details. Let me be frank. This morning Medusa came to me, and told me that your predecessor, the Lesser Grail of the Fifth Holy Grail War, died while actualizing a partial manifestation of the Third Sorcery to save Emiya's life. She believes that when we take victory in the War, completing the Heaven's Feel will kill you. Tell me that isn't so, Liliesviel; that you wouldn't have gone along all this time with a plan to destroy yourself!" As you speak this last, you take her shoulder in hand, pulling the girl a step closer in your emotion. Taken aback by the sudden question, Liliesviel can't immediately answer, looking up at you in wide-eyed confusion. After taking a deep breath and apparently gathering her thoughts, though, she finds the words to answer you, adopting a melancholic half-smile. "Of course I haven't done everything expecting to die, Alberich," she says. "Now that we've found each other, I don't want to ever be away from you, and I," she hesitates, breaking off for a moment. "I believe I will be able to. Medusa can't know what it is to be within the ritual herself. I'm sure I can what my sister couldn't, and make sure that we can go on as we are, just like we promised when you asked about my dreams. Alright?" She seems to gain confidence as she speaks, but you aren't fool enough to have missed her initial uncertainty."That isn't enough," you tell her, bearing down on the girl with insistent care. "I can see you aren't certain. What is it that's worrying you? What are you holding back?"
"You have so much to worry about, making sure we win the War," Liliesviel says quietly, smiling tenderly up at you. Then she slips out of your grasp and turns away from you, lacing her hands behind her back and taking a few light, almost playful steps away as she answers with an air of forced confidence and cheer, "Let me worry about this. It's what I was made for, you know! I promise, even if things can't go as we hoped and I do come to fill the role Grandfather prepared for me, your soul will be materialized. Trust me, okay?">[ ] Trust in Liliesviel's words and leave her to handle the problem of the Heaven's Feel itself. You have enough to deal with; on that subject, you'd best hurry up and meet Kikuko.>[ ] Much as you'd like to, you can't just give Liliesviel unconditional trust on a matter this important. Press her to explain in detail what's at play in this situation. Perhaps you can help her, after all.>[ ] Say something else (Write in)
Not the kind of long update you folks might've been hoping for, I realize, but I'm still trying to grope my way back into the saddle, as it were. Been pretty out of sorts for a while.At any rate, I've got some things figured out, so I should be able to promise at least that the next update will be tomorrow.
>>4457312Oh, and I should've said this earlier, but thank you for the kind words, anon. I do very much appreciate your sticking with the quest through all my scheduling nonsense.
>>4463569>>[ ] Trust in Liliesviel's words and leave her to handle the problem of the Heaven's Feel itself. You have enough to deal with; on that subject, you'd best hurry up and meet Kikuko.Posterity vote for now because I can't come up with a decent write-in at the moment, expect me to switch if someone else does.Either way despite your troubles good to see you're keeping this going and hope things'll pick up for you.
>>4463569>[X] Trust in Liliesviel's words and leave her to handle the problem of the Heaven's Feel itself. You have enough to deal with; on that subject, you'd best hurry up and meet Kikuko.
>>4463569>[ ] Trust in Liliesviel's words and leave her to handle the problem of the Heaven's Feel itself. You have enough to deal with; on that subject, you'd best hurry up and meet Kikuko.
>>4463569I hate this detestable little slut.Hope she dies painfully desu.
>>4463833Strong feelings for someone who's only tried to help you, anon.
>>4463569>[ ] Trust in Liliesviel's words and leave her to handle the problem of the Heaven's Feel itself. You have enough to deal with; on that subject, you'd best hurry up and meet Kikuko.I will let you off the hook for now, if only because there are more pressing matters.
I couldn't get an update done today after all.Tomorrow morning, definitely, I'll get something posted.
One more broken promise.Have you no shame?No dignity?
>>4464913>wahh my QM isn't giving me free entertainment as much as either of us would likegrow up anon
>>4464930If you're going to make a promise.Follow through or FUCK OFF.Simple stuff you stupid twat.
>>4464933Yeah, I'm sure the autistic rage you're spewing really helps the creative process and gives him way more free time to write.
>>4464939Don't make promises then. I couldn't care less if this makes him feel worse.He deserves it for disappointing everyone again.Trust me senpai it ain't hard to run a quest.Especially not one with "nothing happens" updates the size sweets is putting out.A chimp could do it.You gonna keep simping for him or what?Never understood people like you.
>>4464940I guess I can just relate to having priorities higher than questing, and writer's block is a real pain in the ass.
>>4464940>I couldn't care less if this makes him feel worse.After all the monumental negativity I've gotten over the actual content of the quest, you think this is going to make me feel worse? Come on now, anon. You should know better.If anything, it's flattering that you're still that invested. I'm kind of amazed any of you are here after all the shitstorms we've had.Anyway, here's today's update.
"Alright, Liliesviel," you say with a sigh. "If you're so adamant in keeping this to yourself, I suppose I have no choice but to rely on you. Only remember what we agreed on. You're no pawn of your family's anymore; the two of us can make your dreams of life after the War a reality. I'll support you in that, but first you have to believe it yourself.""Of course!" Liliesviel turns back to face you, giving you a bright smile. "I'll make sure the Heaven's Feel goes the way we want it to, so after the War we can do anything we want! Just make sure you're ready to deal with Grandfather's complaints.""Yes, well, I doubt he'll be a problem," you answer, returning her mirth with a grin of your own. "Now, I think we ought to be going." Really, you think, Liliesviel is the expert in matters relating to the Holy Grail itself. You almost certainly wouldn't be able to affect the outcome of the ritual even if she took the time to explain all its details to you, and Medusa was probably only jumping at shadows. After all, isn't it the one who conducts a ritual of this kind who has the most power over its outcome? Perhaps the previous Lesser Grail had to sacrifice herself in order to make Emiya the target of the ritual, and that deficiency is what Liliesviel sought to solve by linking your soul to hers. In any case, as she pointed out herself, you have enough to worry about when it comes to winning the War.On that note, you turn to Adelheid, still focused on the exit and apparently quite uninterested in the discussion you've been having with Liliesviel. She, alone out of the three of you, still has a look of battle-readiness about her, as if she's expecting another Servant to appear at any moment; though there's no trace of foreign magical energy about."What is it that's captured your focus so keenly over there," you ask, walking up quietly behind her and setting a hand on her shoulder. As far as you can see, it's just a doorway in the concrete wall, presumably leading to stairs after a short corridor."I'm doing what you should've been," she answers testily. "Keeping watch. Your friend may have been fool enough to come looking for a one-on-one duel with you, but if his Master was any kind of competent thinker, he'd follow along in secret to take advantage of any opportunities that might arise.""Indeed." You give her a deadpan answer, focusing your eyes on the complete lack of activity coming from the platform exit. "Well then. While I do appreciate your attentiveness, Adelheid, it would seem Mr. Harris either doesn't share your opinion or saw no opportunity to attack. Even if he was here at some point, I certainly doubt he's waiting to ambush two Servants now. Shall we go?"
Adelheid assents with an exasperated smile, and the three of you finally head out, leaving the platform where your brother met his final end behind you. As you'd expected, you meet with no resistance in the corridor, on the stairs that take you up to street level, or on the street itself. Indeed the city seems as deserted as you've come to expect, if not moreso. There's not a living soul out on the street except for Adelheid, Liliesviel, and yourself, and no vehicles pass down the street as you walk toward the address Kikuko gave you. A gentle breeze seems to moan a lonely tune as it blows between silent buildings, and it occurs to you that there may be fairly little time left before Matsuda's last wish becomes impossible, and Tokyo really does come to resemble the Eighth City of the Akeldama. Of course, appearances can be deceiving; you don't know how many people are simply staying at home, fearfully hiding from the inexplicable plague sweeping their city. All the same, has Tokyo ever been so silent?The sight of another human being shocks you out of this reverie, as you realize you've almost arrived at the address Kikuko gave you. It points to a hotel, you realize, and the girl herself waiting in front of the building, tapping the toe of one shoe against the sidewalk in a picturesque display of impatience. She catches sight of you at almost the same time you see her, trotting over with a pout. As soon as she gets within range she loudly demands, "Excuse me, what took you so long? Did you, like, miss your train, or what? I know you said it'd be kinda hard for you to make it, but it's been almost an hour!""I ran into a professional challenge," you answer dryly, symbolically brushing the dust from your lapels. You briefly consider telling her more about your encounter with Matsuda, but quickly decide that although they were far from close it would all the same be better not to burden the girl with the knowledge that one of those you kept by your side during the Akeldama War is now dead by your hand. Instead, you leave it at, "I was waylaid at the train platform by an enemy Servant, and dispatched him. Now, if you don't expect our hostess to refuse us because of my late arrival...""Well!" Kikuko looks as if she'd like to say more, and is frustrated by being unable to fault your reason for the delay. "Sure, I guess it'll be alright. But first," she brushes past you, abruptly walking up to Liliesviel with the kind of beaming, friendly smile that belies her earlier anger. "Hi there," she says brightly. "I'm Munahara Kikuko. I don't think we've met before.""My name is Liliesviel von Einzbern. It's a pleasure to make your acquaintance, Kikuko," Liliesviel answers coolly, dipping a slight curtsy to the taller girl. "I gather you were a comrade of Alberich's in the other War?"
"That's right, Lili-chan." Kikuko promptly bestows a nickname on the girl, before continuing, "And you're one of the girls he's collected this time. You know, Alberich," she adds, rounding on you again with her trademark mocking smile, "it's really kinda crazy how you can get all these girls following you around while acting like such a jerk! I guess that pretty face does help out a lot, huh?" Before you can answer, she whirls around to face Adelheid and take up one of her hands between her own. "And here's Berserker! We didn't talk that much at the university, huh? I hope we can be better friends this time around.""And who wouldn't want to be your dear friend?" Adelheid asks sarcastically, quirking a golden eyebrow as she extricates her hand from Kikuko's grip. "I'm sure we'll get on like bosom companions.""If the introductions are all over," you interject, "do you think you could lead us to Kōrakuhime, Kikuko? As it is, we're only making our previously established lateness even more severe.""Sure, sure," the girl answers, and stepping back to stand between all of you and the hotel, "follow along, everybody." As Kikuko discusses the actual location of Kōrakuhime's suite and how to get there with a receptionist, then leads your group up to the appropriate door, you take a moment to take in the place she's staying in. It's a high-rise like the Tokyo Metropole, and expensive to be sure, but without the blatant gaudiness that place had. Here there's a more understated feeling of luxury, all very modern and spare, as if the place caters primarily to very highly paid men on business trips. It's the sort of location you can imagine Ogawara picking out for himself, but the lack of any element of tradition seems at odds with Kōrakuhime's demonstrated preference for archaism. You don't have too much time to contemplate this before you've arrived at the room in question, 403, and Kikuko is knocking on the door. There's no response. Muttering irritable words under her breath she knocks three more times, and when that too elicits no sign of hearing from within she whips out her phone to fiddle with a messaging app. A few seconds later you hear footsteps inside rushing toward the door. It swings open to reveal a slim, flat-chested girl of about Kikuko's height yawning behind her hand, dressed in an oversized white T-shirt with an anime logo printed across the chest, spats, and nothing else. Her skin is extremely pale and fine, implying that she rarely, if ever, sees the sun; black hair falls long and straight to her calves; and the one of her eyes visible through her hair is wide, dark, and long-lashed. She is, without a doubt, the 'female Ogawara' that Kōrakuhime would resemble if deprived of her supernatural characteristics. Further, her magical energy is clearly noticeable as that of your sister.
"Hi," Kikuko starts as soon as the door opens. "Sorry about the delay, we got held up. Anyway," before she can get any further into her introduction, Kōrakuhime catches sight of you, gasps, and tries to slam the door. You get your hand in before she can close it, holding open a gap just wide enough to fit your face through. The pressure, though insufficient to close it against your will, intensifies when Kōrakuhime realizes you're holding the door.>[ ] Force the door open, grab her, and demand to know why she's been hiding from you and tried to slam the door.>[ ] Try to convince Kōrakuhime to let you in of her own free will. (How?)>[ ] Let her close the door. Whatever the reason, if she's become this unwilling to work with you she'd likely be useless even if you forced her.>[ ] Do something else (Write in)
>>4465980>>[ ] Force the door open, grab her, and demand to know why she's been hiding from you and tried to slam the door.>'Come now, if this is about visiting your room when you aren't properly dressed yet, its not like we gave you an extra hour to prepare.'Would prefer to convince but drawing blanks, for now can settle for this.
>>4465980>[ ] Try to convince Kōrakuhime to let you in of her own free will. (How?)Is this any way to treat your long lost brother?
>>4465980>>4466133This, plus potentially:>Would you care to explain why you're acting so rashly right now? Just trying to shut me out without even so much as a word?
>>4466133>your long lost brother?No no, we're the briefly lost brother.We just murdered the long lost brother in order to get a power-up.
>>4465980Going for: >>4466133
>>4465980>>4465980>[ ] Force the door open, grab her, and demand to know why she's been hiding from you and tried to slam the door.This is fine.Making a prediction. She knows we just killed Matsuda, and is pissy and afraid that our talk of family was nothing but bullshit and we're here for a second powerup. To be fair, if she gives us too much more shit, we *will* be taking a second powerup.Forget the fact that he tried to kill us on no less than three occasions, and the fact that we tried to give him an out, but no-She's stalling for time and cutting off line of sight. Better to grab her now without her setting up (more) bounded fields out of panic. We can sort out exactly what to do with her once we have control of the situation.
Update tomorrow. Looks like it's 3:2 for trying to convince her to let you in.
God damn it. I only just got off work a half hour ago. Update soon, but it's a short one. More tomorrow, so try to vote in the next 12 hours if you can.
"Is this any way to treat your brother, Kōrakuhime?" you ask softly, making a show of struggling with the door though you could force it open if you chose. Tempted as you are to simply crush this show of rebellion from your sister, you tamp your fury down and reason that it's better to get the girl to let you in of her own will than to exacerbate whatever situation has led her to such a rash action and potentially force the encounter to become a battle. "Would you care to explain just why you're acting so rashly just now? Why you'd try to shut me out without so much as a word?""I-I don't know what you're talking about," the girl stammers, sounding terrified. "Who a-are you? Kikuko-sa-san, why did you bring a man with you?" Even her mode of speech has returned to Ogawara's. Does she really think she can fool you this way? You thought better of her intelligence."Ehehe," Kikuko laughs bashfully, poking the tip of her tongue out of the corner of her mouth in a playacted expression of mischief caught out. "I thought it'd be a fun surprise, having a hot guy suddenly show up at this shut-in's door, so I kinda told her I was the only one coming." Seeing your apparent struggle she calls to the girl, "C'mon, Hime-chan, let us in! I promise he won't bite.""Well, that at least explains her surprise," you reply with exasperation, then returning your attention to your sister warn, "None of this playacting, Kōrakuhime. I shouldn't even have to tell you that I can recognize you by your energy. You might have done a decent enough job at that human disguise to fool someone unfamiliar with you, but not me. Let me in and we'll discuss why you've been hiding from me properly, without fighting over this door.""J-j-just let go, please," Kōrakuhime whines. "Whoever you think I a-am, you have the wrong idea! I-I'll talk to you in a minute, but give me some t-time to get ready, okay?" She draws in a hitching, frightened breath as she waits for your answer. Then, as if suddenly remembering, hastily adds, "A-a-and we'll talk, uhm, somewhere out there! I c-can't let a man into my rooms!"The request really does seem to be in earnest, leaving you more than a little put off. Just what the hell is your sister playing at, insisting this hard on not recognizing you and fighting to keep you out of her suite? Is it all some elaborate ruse? If so, is it meant to benefit or hinder you? Does she have some good reason for doing this, based on information she's divined without your awareness, or is her behavior really the product of the inexplicable fright it looks like? Most importantly, should you let her have her minute to prepare? For a moment you find yourself quite uncertain.
>[ ] Let Kōrakuhime close the door and get ready. Whatever it is she's trying to accomplish, you may as well see where she's going with it instead of forcing her. If her fright is real, that's probably the only way of gaining her trust.>[ ] Force the door open and interrogate her on your own terms. You've made quite enough concessions to the irrational whims of a sibling already today, and have no patience for whatever absurd motivation is driving Kōrakuhime to act like a hysteric. >[ ] Do something else. (Write in)
>>4472341>>[ ] Let Kōrakuhime close the door and get ready. Whatever it is she's trying to accomplish, you may as well see where she's going with it instead of forcing her. If her fright is real, that's probably the only way of gaining her trust.Call me interested, had we not picked up her magic would dismiss as Ogawara confusion unless it turns out they just happened to be a mage family as well or if a certain bird has managed to find a way to factory reset servants.Either way let's see where she's going with this.
>>4472341>>[ ] Let Kōrakuhime close the door and get ready. Whatever it is she's trying to accomplish, you may as well see where she's going with it instead of forcing her. If her fright is real, that's probably the only way of gaining her trust.
>>4472341>[X] Let Kōrakuhime close the door and get ready. Whatever it is she's trying to accomplish, you may as well see where she's going with it instead of forcing her. If her fright is real, that's probably the only way of gaining her trust.
I was expecting to have to spend significantly less time at work yesterday than I did on Tues. The reverse was true instead. I'll be unavailable most of the time this week, so don't know when I can get the next update done, but will work on it when I have time.
If Kōrakuhime is steadfast in her refusal to let you in, you think, there are only two options left to you: either acquiesce to her demands or force your way into her latest home; and the latter option you've already decided is unacceptable. Leaving her with one last sigh and exasperated shake of the head, you withdraw your hand and allow Kōrakuhime to slam the door shut. Moments later you hear receding footsteps as the girl retreats deeper into her suite. You only hope you aren't making a mistake. If this has all been an act to buy time, she could be fleeing out the window in a moment, while you wait here foolishly expecting her return. Fortunately you're not kept waiting too long. It's only a few minutes before Kōrakuhime returns, having added to her oversized T-shirt a long gray skirt, zippered hoodie, and pair of flats which come together to present the image of one who is, through sheer laziness, doing everything possible to destroy whatever natural beauty she was endowed with. It's a fashion sense truly befitting your erstwhile comrade of the Akeldama, but hardly lines up with how Kōrakuhime has presented herself up until now."I'm sorry about, ah, all that," she says, looking at you with a sheepish expression. She visibly hesitates, drawing a deep breath in and out to steady herself before continuing, "Y-you can come in now. It's... better to talk in here than out in, er..." She waves a hand vaguely in the direction of the general world outside her suite. "...in public."Without waiting for a response, the girl turns away from you to lead you back into her suite, which you now observe has the heavily lived-in, vaguely disordered look of a home in which someone spends all of their time. An open bag of potato chips and partially drunk cup of tea, to which Kōrakuhime is evidently returning, rest on the kotatsu at the middle of the suite's main room, where she gestures for you to sit."I panicked," she says, without preamble, as the group of you take your seats. "Said... the first thing that came to mind when I saw you. I was afraid... of what you would think of a failure who hadn't shown her face after the manor was destroyed." Interestingly, you note, she's no longer speaking in the affected archaic style which is her usual tendency, but is speaking slowly enough to keep herself from stuttering. Could she be embarrassed to act out that manner of speech in front of Kikuko, who knew her in the Akeldama?"So you haven't lost your memories," you observe deadpan. "A good first admission. I have been wondering why you chose to hide from me instead of coming to my aid after the attack. What's this about being a failure? You aren't going to say some foolish thing like 'I was too ashamed of being unable to protect the manor to face you,' I do hope."
"No," Kōrakuhime answers, shaking her head. "That was my failure... but if that had was all I had to answer for I wouldn't have run. When everything was burning, I saw your... Caster from the War in the Akeldama flying away, and went... to chase after her. When I confronted her she told me that... she had made a mess of everything again, but didn't want to take revenge on you... but that she couldn't serve that girl either, so she couldn't be with you at all." At the words, 'that girl,' Kōrakuhime nods in the direction of Liliesviel, as if this needed clarification. "I tried to stop her, because I knew you needed her for the War. You can see... what the result was." She raises a white finger to the side of her head, indicating the place where no horns protrude. "It was my... complete loss. I don't know why she didn't kill me, but whatever her... reason was, she restrained me instead, and then used her noble phantasm to seal off my magical energy. Right now I can... barely do more than a human, and look like one as well. I decided... that if I was no use to you, it would be better... just to hide until I could find a way to reverse the situation.">[ ] "You didn't need to be afraid. As long as you still want want to be my ally, I'll have you; however powerless you may have become. But what exactly can you still do?">[ ] "You shouldn't have picked a fight with a stronger enemy. Now I've lost your power as well as hers, thanks to her betrayal and your mistake. Do you still retain any of your old abilities?">[ ] "To what extent have you been weakened, then?">[ ] Say something else (Write in)
With that, I'm going to have to leave you for a while. Between work eating up my time and my writer's block on this quest, this will in all probability be my last update before the thread falls off the board. I'll post on my twitter when I've figured out when the next thread will be, but there will probably be a decently long hiatus. I want to get things worked out and get into a situation where I can finish the quest all in one go instead of limping along like this.
>>4480465>[X] "You didn't need to be afraid. As long as you still want want to be my ally, I'll have you; however powerless you may have become. But what exactly can you still do?"
>>4480465>>[ ] "You didn't need to be afraid. As long as you still want want to be my ally, I'll have you; however powerless you may have become. But what exactly can you still do?">reaffirm sibling affection.
>>4480465>>[ ] "You didn't need to be afraid. As long as you still want want to be my ally, I'll have you; however powerless you may have become. But what exactly can you still do?"