Fanfiction The Heavy Saga

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Ver

Endearing Misanthrope
Moderator
The Convergence Series GM
The Heavy Saga



Premise

A sense of normality within the erratic multiverse is oft difficult to come by.

Such is especially true for the organizations that operate within the multiverse to preserve the status quo. The Coalition, the United Universes, and the Multiverse Emergency Unit are some examples of these protectors of the multiverse. Within this story, three accounts, connected not by narrative, but by the mutual search for normalcy in an abnormal multiverse, are told that elaborate on what goes on within these organizations in the day-to-day lives of the members of such organizations, and their blissful unawareness at the storm they do not realize is coming.

This three-chapter anthology series takes place shortly before the events of Restless in Rapture, and every chapter takes place during the same period of time across the multiverse. It began on July 6, 2016, and ended on September 3, 2016.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 - Short Change Hero

Chapter 2 - What Makes A Good Man?

Chapter 3 - Can't Play Dead
 
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Ver

Endearing Misanthrope
Moderator
The Convergence Series GM
Chapter 1 - Short Change Hero




This ain't no place for no hero
This ain't no place for no better man
This ain't no place for no hero
To call "home."


"... So here you are."

This world was perhaps one of the least appealing ones the man had ever visited. And that was saying quite a lot in his humble opinion.

Everything was just dead, if not in the process of dying. The structures were all decaying as fast as the people, there was hardly any vegetation to speak of, and it was usually unbearably hot. As he was not from this world, despite the disguise that he put on that would imply to unknowing outsiders otherwise, the man just had to wonder why there was so much activity stemming from here that concerned the Coalition. From the contribution to the formation of the Coalition by the hands of the Brotherhood of Steel, the Lone Wanderer himself, also known as "Riley Peterson," being a notable member of the organizations, to Agent Lucifer Anghelscu's many misadventures here, and most recently, the recent resurgence of activity of the "Templar Order," the whole reason that the man found himself here in the first place.

It was easy for him to assume that it was because of the lust for power and dominance that plagued many members of the Templars that prevented them from truly being something like the next biggest threat to the multiverse similar to say, Elliot, as those sorts of selfish ambitions were able to cause such disarray. Then again, he wasn't in the Templar Order. What would he know about them?



Well, enough to know that Warren Vidic, the so-called "head" of the Multiversal Templars that he had unified and brought about, presumably coming to power sometime after the first Monokuma Incident that had included Desmond Miles, was holed up in this world for whatever goddamned reason. To be perfectly honest, the man cared little for Vidic's ambition, as so far, they had yet to provide any substantial threat to the multiverse. The man didn't exactly have an opinion on the "punishment before the crime is committed" method, but whatever. Direct orders from the higher ups in the Coalition to apprehend a threat were still orders, so he just went with it. That said, with no notable "big" acts of multiversal terrorism or anything like that under the Templars' belt, the biggest thought on the man's mind at the moment was why they had to choose such an annoying to navigate world like this one to operate, though then again, perhaps they deliberately chose this place to be inconvenient for anyone who would come after them.

Just for that, he was going to probably put an extra bullet or two in Vidic's legs, just to let off some steam.

He had asked the locals, maintaining the disguise as a certain well-known native of this world, around for any suspicious activity, and after some trial and error, most of which included being attacked by raiders or whatever they were called here (all of whom he managed to hold off with well-placed bullets), he had managed to track the Templars down to some hideout that was reminiscent of a small fortress, complete with guards that had their own patrol pattern and so on. The Coalition officer usually did prefer subtlety and stealth over going in guns blazing, but with this many people around, he'd just be lucky to get out alive at all, let alone accomplish his task without anyone noticing.



Approaching the small fortress that stuck out like a sore thumb (due mostly in part to the big logo in front), sitting in the middle of the desert, the man clutched his duster tightly and tipped his hat a little, positioning it so that it covered his face a little more than it already did, for whatever it was worth, walking towards the guarded entrance of the fortress. From the intel he had gathered, this place was a stronghold where Warren Vidic could expand on whatever research he was planning for the multiverse. Not exactly a meeting ground for the Templar bigwigs, but once he was decredited, dethroned, and dealt with, the rest of the organization should crumble down, even though the Coalition had spent relatively little effort in dispatching the Templars and their associates before.

Keeping his head down, which only made him look all the more suspicious, it wouldn't really come as any surprise when he would be approached by the two guards standing in front when he would get close enough, the first guard holding out his hand to the man.

"Halt, traveler," he began, before moving his hand back to clutch the rifle in his hand.

The man identified the guns as M4 Carbines, which seemed to be standard issue for the guards, was something that evidently had ceased to exist in this world, another sign that they were not from this world. And another sign that he was in the right spot. On another note, the funny thing was... Those guns hadn't been invented yet in the world that he was born in.

Guess this sort of knowledge came with the "multiverse officer" thing.

"From the looks of you, I'm assuming that you're some sort of messenger... And it's hard to stumble upon this place by accident. I assume you have business with Mr. Vidic then?"

"I do, yes," the man replied, looking up to reveal his face, brushing the hat off his head, exposing his military cut blonde hair, and suddenly drawing his holstered signature SAA revolvers and aiming them right at the heads of the two guards without skipping a beat.



"Please relay this message for me."

BANG BANG!

Bang bang, the witch is dead.

"... Unless, of course, you'd prefer that I go and confront him myself, which I'd be more than happy to oblige to."



As the two guards wordlessly fell down to the ground, blood seeping from their corpses, Major Revolver Ocelot of the Coalition blew on the smoke rising from his guns, before briefly holstering his guns, stylishly twirling them in the process as he'd just about throw the duster off him. The young man resisted letting out a sigh of relief as he did so, feeling a bit less hot now, though then again, when one wore a long-sleeved black outfit, perhaps he shouldn't be talking about what was considered impractical wear in the heat.

In any case...

No time to waste. I have to move quickly, as they're alerted to my presence by now.


It was time to move.

Dashing forward, he would scale the walls, a feat that was surprisingly easier than one would think thanks to the amount of objects sticking out to grab onto like bricks, before dropping onto the ground on the other side afterwards. So much for an impenetrable base of operations.

'Course, the moment he thought that, a number of armed guards appeared, sporting the Templar logo on their uniforms as they'd aim their guns at Ocelot, the one in front taking the chance to speak.

"Stand down immediately! If you refuse to comply, then you leave us no choice!"

The man's eyes bounced from each of the guards, counting all of them and noting their positions. Let's see... he neglected to reload his guns while he had the chance, but... Hmm, eight. Alright. Not bad.

"There's always a choice," Ocelot retorted, his hands up in the face of the many rifles pointed at him, though his expression hardly changed any, "I'm afraid that you've just made the mistake of believing otherwise. A mistake that will cost you, for you see, I'm quite quick on the draw if I do say so myself. Observe!"

It's said that the fastest quick draw able to be performed by a normal human, that is, without the aid of magic or something to that degree, is about the tenth of a second, and while Ocelot wasn't quite that fast, he was more than capable of downing a mere eight soldiers before any of them would be able to get a shot at him.

BANG!



BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!

A loud sound rang out, and suddenly, before any of the guards could take note of what had just happened, one of their brethren had fallen down, his body going limp as a bullet lodged into his brain. Before the others could even process what had happened, Ocelot, utilizing his dual revolvers, mowed the rest of them down like a machine, repeatedly cocking his weapons and pulling the triggers on them faster than the blink of an eye.

Child's play.

Every mark hit their target; right between the eyes. He still got it.

Still, he had no time to boast over his accomplishments. He had a man to hunt down. A job to do.

Alarms blared loudly enough that Ocelot could hear it from outside. Any way he looked at this, he needed to reload immediately, unless there just so happened to be exactly two guards that would greet him at the door. Tch. Maybe, just maybe, he could make this work.

Instead of doing something reckless like someone his age would likely have been expected to (21 years old was remarkably young when one considered his positions in the organizations he was a part of), Ocelot instead went ahead and took cover behind a pile of conveniently placed sandbags, probably placed there precisely to serve as cover for the guards in case an intruder or an army would try to storm the place (funny how things turned out, huh?), the soldier took this time to reload his guns while waiting for the guards to come out already and search the perimeter hastily.

Sure enough, in a matter of moments, he heard the shuffling footsteps of a number of guards rush outside to search for him. How charming that they'd go through all the trouble to welcome a guest. Perhaps he should return their courtesy.

When the footsteps would stop at the front, he could hear the squad leader bark out commands. "Make sure nobody gets past the door! Grandmaster Vidic is not to be disturbed!"

Unfortunately for them, that was something that they'd be unable to go through with.

There was no way to get past them without alerting their presence, given the small perimeter space. Still, if he was gonna pluck them all one by one, he needed a distraction to get their attention while he could get a good look at them. Let's see... Aha.

A rock would do nicely. Like the one right next to him. And so, Ocelot would manage to get his hands on a nearby solid rock and toss it above him, the object hitting the tower behind the guards, specifically the end of the wall where he would gamble that no guards were looking in that way. Sure enough, when Ocelot would dare to poke his head from behind the sandbags, the guards diverted their attention over to the point of impact, rather than trying to ascertain the arc of which the rock was thrown.

Depending on where you were, being the smarter man was surprisingly easy. Maybe these guys were hired help. This world didn't look very civilized, as reflected by the people, after all.

"Hu--What was that?! There--Gaaaugh!"

BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!

In the span of just less than even one second, Ocelot managed to identify the four targets standing out in front, where they were standing, calculating the trajectory, wind, pressure, and other factors in order to make his clean shots, before making his move. While his expertise in the Coalition was more comparable to that of... junior administration, having taken it upon himself to visit the Torch that one time and see how it was going, his skills in the field were nothing to scoff at either.

Still, he clicked his tongue, having wished he would have been able to find a way past them, as it would have attracted less attention that way, but he could try again next time.

With that, he would dash through the front door that the guards had foolishly decided to leave open, simultaneously reloading his revolvers while he had the chance. The small fort was crudely constructed; it was almost like some dastardly castle that you would see in a production for a fairy tale story, with torches on the walls to illuminate the path, the walls themselves being made up of dank bricks, and the whole place seeming inexplicably wet in certain spots. He didn't want to know what that was about.

With keen hearing, Ocelot was able to detect the sounds of more guards rushing in his direction. While he was more than capable of taking anyone down who would get in his way, to be perfectly honest, this was getting rather boring. Now, it would be more exciting and easier on himself if he'd simply slip past them undetected, right? After all, that was what the man who called himself David, or rather "Snake" for most of their encounters, would do. He was a man, not an animal.

The same went for Ocelot. Or rather, Adamska.

The man continued to run forward, right in the direction of the approaching footsteps that would make themselves known to him once they'd come around the corner, and then...

Whoosh!

At likely the last possible second, Ocelot would manage to slip into the next corridor on the side, hugging the wall, his body obscured by the shadows in the absence of torches on the wall he leaned against, while a number of armed guards breezed past him, none the wiser. For a supposedly heavily guarded place, perhaps this world really wasn't the best place to recruit protection.

Then again, he was reluctant to reason that maybe he was just that good. Pride was a deadly sin, after all. One that generally lead to a man's downfall, especially when coupled with wrath and greed.

Shuffleshuffleshuffle.

"Shots heard from the front! He must not be allowed to disturb Grandmaster Vidic! Protect him at all costs!"

This was just too easy.

...

It really was too easy. It made him a bit suspicious, but it couldn't be helped.





"This is Warren Vidic of Abstergo, also known more widely as the Templar Order, and my research has been compromised. Need to relocate immediately. If any of my colleagues manage to find this, be sure to seek out Daniel Cross in the possibility that I am no longer among the living, as with his unstable personality, he may end up destroying himself without... the proper guidance. As for Shay Patrick Cormac, his services to the Multiversal Templar Order will never be forgotten, but should I cease to be, it appears that he will have to find sole employment in Revan now. I--"

CRASH!

"!"



Bursting through the door of the office in which he would find Vidic, Ocelot wasted no time in pointing his revolver straight at the old man, smirking lightly in self-satisfaction as he'd managed to successfully infiltrate the facility without raising too much suspicion. It'd be quite a while until the guards would think to check the office, and by then, their intruder will have already fled.

With his keen eyesight, the first thing Ocelot noticed about the place was how radically different the office was from the rest of the place that he had traversed. This room, in stark contrast to the dank halls, was more... civilized, to put it simply. Looked like he wasn't the only one who thought poorly of the simpletons with guns running around.

Ocelot himself not included of course.

"Ah... So the intel wasn't wrong. You really do just have a poor choice of worlds to hole up in, don't you, Mr. Vidic?" Ocelot inquired, holding the man at gunpoint. He was more useful alive than he was dead, so he didn't shoot just yet. Besides, the orders stated that he had to be caught alive if it could be helped. And right now, it was able to be helped.

Though how much it could be helped would depend on how much Vidic would cooperate.

Still, he expected Vidic to do what all sniveling cowards of "evil" men did; get on their knees, beg for their lives, grovel, that sort of thing. But the old man simply laughed. Like something was funny. Very funny. Something that Ocelot wasn't in on the joke with.

"... Care to enlighten me on what you're laughing at, you geezer?" He asked, his smirk disappearing when he felt doubt in the notion that he had the upper hand here.



"You... You are just an interesting specimen, aren't you, young man?" Warren Vidic inquired, remaining calm despite the gun in his face, "Fascinating how the Coalition could interfere with my plans more than the Multiversal Assassins ever could. I guess Mr. Miles ended up in a ditch somewhere. After all, that was all he could ever amount to in the end," he said spitefully.

"Are you stalling for someone, Mr. Vidic?"

"I wouldn't dream of it, son. I have no one to stall here, you'll find that to be apparent," he replied, extending his arms toward the room, showing off how they were the only people around, "I just... find it amusing. You think that cutting off what you think to be the head of this Order will bring it down, but let me tell you something, we are like a Hydra! Cut one head off, another will grow in its place. That is how we operate, boy. While you and the other kids attempt to fit in your big boy boots, my cohorts and I split our power evenly, maintaining a steady order while you can hardly even keep your relations with the United Universes well and good."

"Careful. If I were you, I wouldn't run my mouth so confidently. You're coming with me, old man. On the charges of conspiracy against the multiverse, attempts to orchestrate a Murder Game, and God knows how many counts of indirect murder."

"Oh, you think you've really got me, don't you? You think you're my undoing, but really, boy, you're nothing more than an inconvenience to our grand plan. For you see, the research that I have gathered will prove useless to you, and--"

BANG!

A warning shot rang out, a bullet flying right past Vidic and lodging right into the wall, stopping him in his tracks and interrupting whatever maniacal train of thought he had in his senile head.

"I have no interest in listening to your rambling, old man. That's a job my superiors are better equipped to handle. Now, keep quiet, or I'll shut that insufferable mouth of yours myself."

"Oh, I think you'll find that difficult. After all, it's nigh-impossible to capture a man when his bodyguard is still around, you know."

"What are you--?"

"Russian. If you please."

"Da. I thought you would never give ze signal."



Behind Ocelot stood a hulking man of around 7'2, the one whom Vidic referred to as the "Russian." And appropriately enough, he spoke in a thick Russian accent to boot. Before the smaller man would turn around and act, not bothering to ask himself how such a big man could get behind him unawares, the burly henchman would deliver a mighty front kick into Ocelot's back, knocking him forward and causing him to drop the gun that he was holding in his hand, though thankfully, he just happened to have his other firearm holstered, and so it stayed on his form for the time being.

It was a miracle that his spine wasn't broken on the spot. A side kick might have done the trick if he did that instead, but hopefully, the brute was too dumb to know what a side kick even was.

Then again, he should never hope in a place like this.

"Guh!" Ocelot grunted, recovering quickly and rolling onto his knees, having turned himself around to face the Russian, but with his back now against Vidic.

"Go now, sir! I take care of little man myself!" The Russian exclaimed with a cocky smile, to which the old man nodded.

"I leave this in your hands then, Russian! Do not disappoint me."

With that, Vidic turned around and pull on a random book on the bookcase behind him, and suddenly, like in some cheap spy film, the bookcase would open up, revealing what seemed to be a secret passageway that he would go into.

Shit, he was going to get away. First things first!

Ocelot would quickly spin around and draw his remaining revolver, but before he would be able to get a shot in, his hand would be grabbed by the Russian, his arm locked as the gun was pointed at the ceiling. Ocelot resisted as best as he could, but he was clearly outmatched in terms of sheer strength.

Alright then. Let's see how fast and durable he was.

"Where do you think you are going, little boy? The fun is just about to get started, da," he said with a small chuckle. He was clearly strong enough to crush Ocelot's hand, and maybe even the gun, with the sheer force of his hand, but the fact that he didn't only made Ocelot assume that he was toying with him.

This would surely prove to be a fateful mistake.

"You have similar eyes to mine, comrade," the Russian continued, "Are you also Russian by any chance? I see American in you as well... A mix? Very interesting! I have always wondered what true American culture is like! But... you see, I have been confined to this barbaric world for ages, Mister Vidic does not show me American way of life!"

The man wasn't entirely wrong, but to be clear, Ocelot was born in France to American and Russian parents. Not that he knew that. His world was so full of conspiracy and secrets that no matter how much he tried to look into it from the databases on what they had of his universe, the data was difficult to come across, whether it be because the details were lost in time, nobody knew, etc., depending on the world.

Not everything was known to a person who could traverse through the multiverse.

"Well, Mister Russian... The first thing you should know about Americans... is that they get irrationally angry when you try to take their guns away!" He exclaimed, bashing the elbow on his free arm right into the Russian's face, particularly the nose. It was then that he would be able to hear something shatter, followed by a loud groaning as the grip on his other wrist would loosen up a bit. Great! Now this was his chance to--

WHAM!

Ocelot's train of thought would suddenly be interrupted when the Russian, in blind rage, would deliver a powerful hook into his face, like instant payback, but like with before, he would be able to roll with the attack, absorbing most of the impact and pain and creating some distance between the two of them, Ocelot standing up in a position indicating that he was about to partake in CQC.



... Hmph, still, perhaps direct CQC would not be the best course of action, given the man's stature and strength. Unfortunately, he had lost his other gun from the punch, as it had fallen out of his grasp and onto the ground, before being kicked away by the angry Russian.

"Interesting... So that is what an American-Russian is like! I don't think I like it very much! I'll have to play with you some more before I can make judgment though!" He said, his grimace morphing into a grin as he would speak upon recovering.

Wordlessly, not even deciding to dignify the man with a response, Ocelot would draw a combat knife. He personally didn't like the weapon very much, and as such, made sure to either use his guns when he could, or his hands when CQC was needed. Knives were too dirty and slow. Fists were fast and clean when you made the right moves, as were bullets if you made the right shots. And Ocelot knew how to do both, but this was a "desperate times call for desperate measures" scenario.

"Fair warning, then. I don't play very nice!"

"Hehe, I love a boy who likes to play rough! Makes it more interesting for me!"

Accepting the challenge, Ocelot didn't hesitate to move, dashing forward towards his enemy and making his move, feinting a left, and then going for a right slash, cutting at his chest, the biggest and most obvious target. His skin was surprisingly hard to cut through; it was comparable to cutting through a damned bear or a gorilla! Still, he couldn't let up. Tough as he might be, no human could survive a direct attack to the heart!

With that in mind, Ocelot would evade a right hook thrown his way by the Russian, before countering with a thrust of his blade forward, right into the Russian's heart, and...!



...

Well, this was awkward.

"Hehehehe, tell me it is longer than that, little boy!"

"I think I'm going to be sick."

"You are going to have to try again if you want to penetrate my body and hit the core!"

"Shut up and--!"

BLAM!

Without missing a beat, the Russian sent a powerful straight right into Ocelot's chest, the force enough to send him sprawled onto the floor after hitting the ground hard. The air was knocked out of him rather easily, if not because of the punch (thank God it didn't hit the solar plexus with that kind of strength), then because of the manner in which he hit the floor. It didn't help when he would also end up coughing, more air escaping his lungs as the Russian, still relaxed as ever, casually took the knife out of his chest like it was nothing.

Still, this was no time to let the other party recover. Thankfully, the Russian didn't to seem to have much concept for that, if only because he viewed this as just a game. And perhaps life was but a game to him. But Ocelot was done playing around.



Coming back around, Ocelot grabbed the nearest object, one of the office chairs, and slammed it right into the Russian's body, letting out a loud KRASH!

...

Only for the chair to break on contact as though it were made of wood. The hulking man only laughed gleefully in response, as though the attack hardly tickled.

"That's the spirit! I enjoy having fun with a desperate man!"

While most of the chair was destroyed, Ocelot still held onto the shattered legs, the legs possessing spiky ends due to the nature of them breaking. Using this opportunity to go on, Ocelot would proceed to then stab the spiked ends of the chair legs into the Russian's chest. Of course, he knew that if a knife could barely even get to him, then this would do no good, but even so, he was hoping that this would pain his enemy enough to buy him some time to form a more solid plan of attack, but alas, the man's skin was so tough that Ocelot was lucky that he could get one chair leg to stick inside his chest, while the other just fell out after being stuck in for a second.

"Uh, uh, uh! You'll really have to push it in harder if you want to get a reaction from me, big boy!" The Russian only continued to laugh, the younger man unable to escape when he would be grabbed by the head by the Russian's giant hands and lifted him right off his feet.

... Oh shi--!



KRAAASSSSHHH!

As though the wall were made of plaster, Ocelot was easily thrown through the wall behind the Russian, his body being stopped when it would collide into railing above a flight of stairs, the air once again knocked out of him upon impact into the railing, letting out a choked sound when he would do so. His head felt like splitting apart, but he couldn't let that happen. Not now! Of all things, right now, what his head needed to do was be in the game! Just for a little while longer!

"Mmm... You cannot fulfill me as you are. Ze Punisher was far more feisty than you. You just do not possess the same flame, boy," the Russian mused, seeming to get bored, approaching Ocelot from the front, the soldier still trying to regain his footing and breath, holding onto the railing to prevent himself from accidentally falling down. However, it seemed that his body's burning desire to rest cost him a bit, as before Ocelot would be able to think to move again, the Russian's outstretched arm would grab the soldier by the neck, choking him out.

"Kh...Khhggh!"

Whatever air was still left in him was fleeting quickly, and if not from his throat crushing from the mere force of the man's meaty fingers, then he was going to die of asphyxiation in a matter of seconds. Come on, come on!!

With one hand on the Russian's in an attempt to pull it off his neck, Ocelot made two simultaneous movements in order to get him off; one, raise his booted foot into the Russian's groin for a critical attack, and two, punch his adversary right in the left eye, hoping to have jammed his knuckle into the socket. While it didn't get that far, he was able to draw just a little bit of blood, and a pained groan from the Russian. With that, in anger, he turned around and threw Ocelot back into the office, his body slamming into the table like a rag doll, the impact eliciting a "Augh!" groan from him.

"I think the roughhousing has gone for long enough. It is time to die now, little man! RAAAAUGH!" The Russian exclaimed, a small stream of blood trickling from his eye, before letting out a loud yell as he would charge forward, going in for possibly his ultimate attack. With quick thinking, Ocelot grabbed the nearest thing available to him; the spindle of a the chair from earlier, though the rest of his body struggled to stand up once again. This was all or nothing now.

The thing about close-quarters combat was that if you had distance on your enemy and they were closing in on you, then they failed a basic of CQC: being close. If you had too much range, then that meant your opponent was given time to predict your movement and counter accordingly. And so, that was precisely what Ocelot did.

WHOOSH!

In blind rage, Russian raised his oversized arm and threw it straight in Ocelot's direction, hoping to smash him with his sheer strength. However, with the last of his strength, Ocelot moved. He moved faster than he ought to be in his wounded condition, evading the overly wide punch that would end up smashing into the ground instead, possibly causing a sizable dent in it, and that was when he reacted.

With a sickening KSSSSH sound, Ocelot stabbed the spindle right into the most sensitive spot of the Russian's body; his eye. With blood gushing out, the Russian let out a blood-curdling scream as he clumsily staggered back, closer and closer to the hole he had created in the wall, attempting to pull out the spindle. However, he wouldn't be given that chance.

"AAAAUGHH! YOU'RE DEAD!"

"No... I don't think so, big boy!"

With that, he would slide over to one of his revolvers that had been kicked away by the Russian, and without a second thought, he would fire three shots into the Russian's chest, the impact of each bullet penetrating his skin and causing him to stagger back, their effect more like giant hammers knocking him back with an "Oough!" sound, until he would lose his balance and end up fatally falling off the railing and down the stairs, landing right on his neck where a loud KRAK sound could be heard, even from Ocelot's position.

"... Tch," Ocelot grunted, too tired to be in a celebratory mood over surviving the battle. Instead, he simply spat out blood onto the ground, and limped back to the desk. It was useless to pursue Vidic now, he had likely already made his escape, but if there was research he had found that he could take a look into, then maybe... Just maybe this wouldn't have all been for nothing.

It didn't take very long for him to find a small chest, which seemed to be unlocked fortunately. Unlocking it, using the small desk it was sitting on as support, Ocelot would find a strange object inside. Something that appeared to be a spearhead:



"What... is this?"

"That would be the head of Gungnir. An object that is beyond your reach."



"?!"

Turning around with his gun pointed at the source of the direction, Ocelot would find himself faced by two men, one blonde and one with a red color motif. They seemed hardly threatened by his gun, and that could only mean they were more powerful than they looked.

Damn. He could only hope that they were friendly, at least.

"Who are you?" He asked warily.



"Ah, right. My name is Ollerus," the man politely said with a bow, before facing Ocelot again and gesturing towards the young man standing next to him, "And this is my associate. You might know him by the name of... Fiamma of the Right?"

"Fiamma of the...?!"

That name needed no introduction. Though he ultimately turned out to not be the ultimate mastermind behind it, he was the namesake of the Fiamma Incident, and for good reason. Driven mad by the influence of what he called the "Right Hand of the Crimson Moon," in actuality the Arch Demon's right hand cut off and shrunken down to size, he was provided with the power to orchestrate his own Murder Game by Kirei Kotomine. But... this was really him? He was still alive?!

"Indeed," the man nodded, a deceivingly benign smile on his face, "I've returned. I've returned with the intent to make amends for my sins in the past. Starting with taking the head of Gungnir. Hand it here now."

"You'll do no such thing," Ocelot refused, shaking his head, "This is now property of the Coalition. You are welcome to accompany me back to my headquarters so that we can examine it together, but I'm afraid that until my associates and I find out more about it, this--"

BOOM!

With a snap of his fingers, the man who called himself Ollerus generated a random explosion in the air right in front of Ocelot, the sheer force of the explosion sending his body slamming into the bookcase behind, battered and bloodied from the damage, though miraculously, he wasn't dead just yet. With a sigh, Ollerus ran a hand through his hair, before glaring at Ocelot with a narrowed eye.

"I know not of who the Coalition is, but let me tell you something... If you would claim that they are a force of good, then in that case, I will just say... Lying vermin like you should just disappear already."

"Kugh... Who... are...?!"

"I am the one who should have become a Magic God. Don't test me. Your face betrays more than you might think. In any case... Come now, Fiamma. Dispose of him, and then we'll get out of here."

Fiamma of the Right nodded, and with that, he would approach Ocelot's battered form, extending his right arm out towards him.



"By the residual power of the Right Hand of the Crimson Moon that continues to dwell within me, I command you... to disappear!"

With that, his hand began to glow a blinding shade of red, but before anything would happen, Ocelot's pained grimace would contort into what seemed to be a grin tugging at the edge of his lips as he let out a chuckle, and then one whisper.

"Heh... You're pretty good."

FSSSSH!

And then, in a blinding flash that was over in an instant, Ocelot's body had disappeared. Without another thought, the two of them would take off with the head of the spear they called Gungnir.

No one would ever know of this incident. No one would know of this encounter for some time. Not until the time was right. But that was for another time.

For now, Ocelot's primary worry was to survive. For he had quite the journey ahead of him.

Because when he would wake up, he'd wake up in the face of Rapture.

This ain't no place for no hero
This ain't no place for no better man
This ain't no place for no hero
To call "home."
 

Ver

Endearing Misanthrope
Moderator
The Convergence Series GM
Chapter 2 - What Makes A Good Man?


Ain't nothin' wrong with this chemistry
Ain't nothin' wrong with this place for me
And time will tell the test of pedigree
Experience is another one meant for me


Akane Tsunemori had interesting chemistry with the other officers of the multiversal United Nations.

That was something that she often mulled over whenever her mind wasn't completely absorbed in the work she had to get done, organizing and settling multiversal matters, ensuring that the directive wasn't being violated in key worlds, all that good stuff. Right now, on a small break, she simply sat at a desk assigned to her at the base headquarters world of the United Nations, looking up at the ceiling aimlessly.

Hmm.

One could argue those two things mentioned earlier went hand in hand. That is, the multiverse, and the people whom she found herself coming into contact with through her work. For every person she'd meet that she could consider normal, she could meet five other people just as easily who were most definitely not normal.

That is to say, among people of all sorts of different personalities and origins, perhaps it figured that she was the "normal" man of the group. Wouldn't have been the first time anyway, this instance being between the eccentric-ish (not really?) leader Robin Aquilus, adviser Ritsuko Akagi, senior officer Carth Onasi, recruit Add, officer Asriel Dreemurr, and so on.

But perhaps the million dollar question that she had to pose herself was... Were they good people, in the end of the day?

Well... The answer depended on who we were talking about here.

A short answer could be given for the four of them, but perhaps a long answer would have been more Akane's style, as she was a psychology major, and thus, put thought into what made people tick, even if it was hardly her business since she knew some of the people better than others.

For one, she figured she'd start with Mister Robin. What did she exactly make of him? Well...



He wasn't really a bad person by any means. On the contrary, he was exceedingly nice. As far as Akane could tell, he was certainly diligent and well-meaning, but sometimes she had to wonder what specifically made him qualify for the role of Secretary-General in the first place and... Come to think of it, weren't they actually around the same age? Well, not that it mattered anyway. She was going to get off track at that point.

Truth be told, maybe it was unfair to think such things, considering Akane hardly knew him personally, but still, there was just something about it all. Something she couldn't really explain.

Maybe her time working within the law and interacting with the common folk made her paranoid of people she deemed excessively nice and otherwise altruistic. In her experience, they usually turned out to be serial killers. Not that she was implying Mister Robin was a serial killer of any sort, of course. Not by one bit.

... Come to think of it, has he actually killed anyone before? Akane didn't know if she'd be surprised or not if she'd ever find out.

Still, either way, Akane was at least semi-sure that Robin was, in fact, a good man at the end of the day. He was generally nice enough, made choices that he believed he was right with little waver, and so on. Not necessarily the kind of person she'd call a "bad person."

"Ahem."



"Eh?!"

Blinking in surprise, Akane let out a gasp when a certain noise would take her back to reality, back to the mundane place that was her desk at the headquarters of the United Universes. She hadn't realized she had been daydreaming until what seemed to be a considerable amount of time had passed, as can be hypothesized from the familiar man standing in front of her with a waiting expression on his face.

"O-Oh, it's just you, Mr. Onasi. What can I do for you?"



"Yeah, it's just me, Akane. Glad to see that you're back with us," the man known as Carth Onasi spoke to the younger woman with an almost amused tone. Of course, he was rarely actually amused, as a few other members would attest to.

"I just need you to run over to the office and make some copies of the latest documents that just came in, and then deliver them to Ms. Akagi. Apparently, these are really sensitive documents, only for the eyes of the higher-ups, so don't peek."

"How do I copy something if I can't even look at what's on it?"

"Very carefully. These documents came in from an unknown source, though they provided a valid identification code. Thing is, when I tried to pull up who exactly they were, it said they were classified. Weird, right?" Carth would inquire with a shrug, handing the documents to Akane.



"I... suppose," Akane mumbled, taking the folder and blinking briefly, before standing up, holding the documents close to her chest, "I'll do as you asked, though... It is pretty curious, don't you think? I mean, what would Ms. Akagi have to hide from us anyway?"

"Well, when you word it like that, sounds suspicious, doesn't it?" Carth asked, scratching his head for a moment, "Said she just wanted the copies delivered to her, and then I guess she'd bring them to the Secretary-General," he continued, before proceeding to gingerly look about to see if anyone else was watching, before leaning in close to Akane, "Between you and me, I sorta already peeked too. Didn't look like much from what I skimmed; just stuff related to the Coalition. Could just be incident reports for all I know."

Stepping away, he'd proceed to give a shrug, before giving a wave and walking off. "In any case, it's not my problem. You'd better hop to it, Miss Tsunemori."

And with that, as abruptly as he came, he left, leaving Akane all to herself and her thoughts.

Carth Onasi. Such a strange man, to be honest.

To put it simply, he was... unpredictable. One moment he was generally pleasant and a normal enough person, even a little playful with some of the female co-workers around, the next he was cold and reticent, moody and grumpy, as though he was some sort of bipolar. Akane often wondered to herself what had happened to Carth in his past, though whenever she'd inquire during coffee breaks, he'd either give annoyingly vague answers or change the subject entirely. Another part of the trouble was that no one else seemed to know the details of his past either, except for the Secretary-General's adviser / second in command, Ritsuko Akagi, who was the one who had recruited him into the organization in the first place.

Not to say he was ever necessarily a bad person. At worst, he was usually needlessly blunt or just plain silent, as mentioned earlier. When he was in his good moods, he was easier to work with. Cooperative, lenient, diligent, all the good qualities of an exceptional associate in Akane's eyes. In some regards, Carth reminded Akane of a few other men she'd worked with in the past. One man's diligence, another man's leniency, another man's seasoned experience, and so on.

The circumstances between Carth and the certain nameless acquaintance Akane thought back to were somewhat similar as well. As far as Akane could gather, Mr. Onasi had lost a number of people in his life, and because of that person who had betrayed his trust, he, once an upstanding officer, had become comparatively bitter and driven by the thought of payback. While he wasn't anywhere near as thirsty for blood as Akane's other example, when he was driven, he was driven. That much could easily be ascertained during the Downfall of Elliot, considering his reactions when he seemed to suspect that there was another mastermind at work...

Still, even when he was having his moods, she was certainly someone she'd prefer being around if she'd ever find herself in a pinch. He was someone she could trust. Someone she could count on.

Carth Onasi was someone that Akane could consider a good man, in short.

...



Oh, shoot.

She did that thing again where she completely zoned out.

Looked like she was developing a bad habit of that lately, likely a consequence of nothing major in her work occupying her thoughts. No big case, no big bad mastermind to hunt after, nothing like that. Just humdrum work.

It bugged her a lot, but she shouldn't complain. Boring was better than exciting in this line of work.

Well, in any case, off she went. Time to make some copies for these mystery documents.





There wasn't much to say about the interior design of the base. Then again, even if there was, it'd probably all be highly classified. Still, shiny silver walls and a black floor were as bland as it sounded, considering silver was roughly the same color as gray. Dull, uninteresting gray.

Oh, and the occasional depressing beige.

No wonder government matters bored most people, to be honest.

Walking into the copy room, Akane mindlessly tossed the documents from the folder into the copy machine, deciding to make herself a cup of coffee while she waited. The room had a cool air to it, due in part to the air conditioning, but there was just something calming about it to Akane. Maybe it was the low hum of the machinery inside, or the smell of coffee, or whatever else that gave a mellow ambiance to it.

Fortunately, the coffee pot was moderately fresh, presumably a courtesy of other employees who were here earlier. She could definitely use the pick-me-up, all things considered. Or at the very least, a good nap. Something to take her mind off these blasted mystery papers.

...



Come to think of it, what was being copied anyway? Mr. Onasi seemed to only have a vague idea about it and thought little of it, but hey, curiosity was what always got Akane ahead.

A small peek wouldn't hurt, right?

Once they'd finish, the machine beeping to signify so, Akane would open up the machine and, before sliding the copies into the folders along with the originals, attempting to take a peek at the papers, her back facing the door from which she had come in, unaware of the presence behind her.

"Ahem."

"E-Eh?!"

With a sharp gasp, Akane accidentally dropped the papers, the sheets scattering all over the floor. She wasn't this much of a klutz, but then again, to be fair, she didn't exactly expect to see the Secretary-General's main adviser in front of her. Specifically, the second-in-command of the joint.

Ms. Ritsuko Akagi.



"Good afternoon, Ms. Tsunemori," the blonde woman simply said calmly without missing a beat or blinking, not even reacting to Akane's klutzy accident. God, she was almost like a statue sometimes. Hardly emoting, hardly responding to things.

In many ways, she was the perfect foil to the leader that she advised; Robin Aquilus.

While Robin might be benevolent, open, and charismatic by appeal, Akagi was the opposite. She was generally not that friendly, kept mostly to herself, spending most of her speaking time with either the Secretary-General himself if not sticking to her own devices, and charismatic by intimidation. Basically, in a similar vein to how a "real" politician could be charismatic these days. That is, the present of Akane's world.

Still, she didn't really approve of it there, and she didn't approve of Ritsuko's charisma by inciting fear from her very presence approach. Even if it certainly worked most of the time.

"Looks like you dropped the papers I sent Onasi to copy," she said flatly, her hands pocketed within her lab coat. Why the woman kept wearing that, considering one could assume she did little actual scientific work these days, Akane would never know.

"R-Right, right, sorry! I'm sorry, Ms. Akagi!" Akane exclaimed in a panic, scrambling to pick up the papers on the floor. As she did so, she at least still had enough focus on what she was originally doing that the younger woman managed to get a glance at the documents.

Though it was but a short look, Akane was able to make out what seemed to be... floor plans? Some of the pages looked like photographs, while others seemed to resemble blueprints, plans, the like. Were these really perhaps related in some way to the Coalition, as Mr. Onasi had idly suggested?

Ritsuko cleared her throat again, prompting Akane to blink and instinctively give her the whole folder once she'd collect everything again. Dumb move on her part, but seriously, it was difficult to remain clear-headed when she was in Ritsuko Akagi's presence.

"If you're really so curious about what's in these sensitive documents, don't make it look so obvious, Miss Tsunemori."

"A-Ah, no, I didn't mean to--"

"Relax, I'm teasing," Ritsuko interrupted with her completely deadpan expression, before continuing, "If you really must know, they're just, as you might have already gathered, blueprints. Schematics of a little Coalition outpost codenamed The Torch that they had recently established. According to the person who had delivered these in the first place, it's meant to be a training ground for potential recruits," the blonde woman mused with a soft breath, shuffling through the papers. "As you know, the Coalition is obliged to share its activities with the United Nations. Though... People with secrets may be bad, but you'd be surprised at how much trouble people with nothing to hide can be when you insist them to be open with you. That is, especially if they're only pretending to have nothing to hide..." She murmured.

To be completely honest, this continued train of conversation only made Akane more and more nervous (when she wasn't busy being mystified by her), if only because Ms. Akagi, who was usually so silent and reticent when not standing next to Secretary-General Aquilus, was talking to her so casually. It felt like she was in one of those old movies where the killer acted really casual and nonchalant before killing their victim.

...

Well, that was rude to say about Ms. Akagi, but still.

Still, she could only assume that a representative of the UN had come to this so-called Torch to observe what went on there for a little bit, with the Coalition's permission of course, but the situation still struck her as a little weird, personally. There was a need to do this to these outposts now? Did that mean they'd have to document and closely observe every outpost they had as well? She had to wonder what made this so-called training ground so special, but her uncomfortable feeling overwhelmed her curiosity.

"I-I see. In any case, I really should be heading back to my post."

"Ah, yes. Go ahead then. I'll deliver these to Secretary-General Aquilus once I'm finished going over these. Thank you."

With an acknowledging nod, Akane left for the door, before stopping when Ritsuko would clear her throat again.

"Oh, and one more thing, Miss Tsunemori..."

"Y-Yes? What is it?" Akane inquired somewhat nervously, that wide-eyed expression never leaving her.



"Don't stick your nose too deep in matters that don't concern you. It might get cut off if you're not careful," she said with a deceivingly benign smile and oddly teasing tone, holding the folder under her arm now and walking off with that, leaving the younger woman by herself in the room.



"R-Right..."

She was a seriously scary person in Akane's eyes to be honest.

It was like meeting the prime minister. If the prime minister was really scary, yet in an almost respectable way. Though Akane had to wonder... Was she really respectable?

It wasn't to be disrespectful to someone in such a high position, but Akane has a troubled history with overbearing authority figures anyway. As mentioned before, Ritsuko was like the opposite, the foil of Robin. That meant that while one could perhaps describe Robin as the squeaky clean head, the public figurehead of the organization, they could also describe Ritsuko in that regard as the shady, shadowy puppetmaster in the dark, manipulating events to have things go their way. Of course, there was no actual proof that it was like this, but Akane's hunches were usually half-right.

To put it more delicately, it did seem like she was more fit to get her hands dirty compared to Robin, and Akane had to wonder if that was necessarily a good thing. After all, they were the general authority throughout the multiverse, and they had to demonstrate that they were benevolent, not malevolent.

The thing about absolute power was that it corrupted absolutely, though... Ritsuko had that air of her to Akane, like she was already a corrupted person at heart to begin with.



Still, judge not lest ye be judged.

Akane herself could be considered a saint compared to the others whom she'd worked with, even before the Neo-Tokyo Incident, though she personally wouldn't be comfortable with the sentiment. After all, it wasn't like she didn't have blood on her own hands either, even if it was for the good of others. Even if it was for the sake of justice, the muddled concept that sometimes even someone as idealistic as her wondered just what the hell it meant anymore these days.

But even so, there were many people out there who had gone through less than her and went mad with thoughts of vengeance, or hysteria, or whatever have you. Her mental fortitude was almost superhuman. Oftentimes, she knew more than even she realized. After all, if she wasn't as perceptive as she was, she wouldn't have had all those thoughts about Robin, Carth, and Ritsuko.

Though... there was one thing that Akane Tsunemori did not know. There was one lie in the hay of words that Ritsuko Akagi spoke.

Ritsuko Akagi never delivered those documents concerning The Torch to Robin Aquilus, because the Coalition, in reality, has yet to formally authorize its presence being recorded to the UN, and her source was someone that Akane could never suspect.

After all, her instincts were never completely wrong, but when a person in this day and age is often conflicted by her hunches, it was hard to know when to pursue them, and when not to.

At the end of the day, she could only hope that Ritsuko Akagi was a good person.

So tell me now, tell me now
And show me how, show me how
To understand, understand
What makes a good man?
 

Ver

Endearing Misanthrope
Moderator
The Convergence Series GM
Chapter 3 - Can't Play Dead


Well, hell, she walk like a zombie
Talk too cold
Live in a graveyard
Like the one I call home




"... Once again, left with bugger all to do."

And yet, he was still feeling quite knackered.

Sometimes, even a courteous gentlemanly-type like Knight Leader could become tired of a lady's mannerisms. Or that of many ladies in any case.

Perhaps it was a thing to do with trust. After all, it was evident from some of the MEU members' behavior towards him that for whatever reason, they didn't seem to trust him. Was it because they didn't even know his real name? Perhaps it went without saying, but "Knight Leader" was simply a title to him, and it referred to how he was the leader of the Knights of England back in his home world, quite the honorable position for an honorable group of people, if he did say so himself.

Shame that he didn't really feel inclined to go back that often though.

In any case, maybe it was because he was a man? From what Lady Carissa told him, men were something of an uneasy topic for the organization. He couldn't really fathom why, considering this Multiverse Emergency Unit was supposed to be a group that worked for good and protected those in need, regardless of trivial things that people would discriminate against... but then again, women worked in mysterious ways. Not that he'd ever be caught dead saying something like that. After all, he wasa gentleman. A knight, no less. He lived to serve people. Not just his lady (though she was generally the most important person), but also serving the greater good. What made him less qualified than another person to protect the others?

Not that he was particularly interested in joining the MEU in any case. He was perfectly comfortable as he was by Lady Carissa's side. He would only serve the organization so long as Lady Carissa remained a part of the Coven, that is, the alliance of the highest-ranking members of the MEU, and that their goals remained in line with each other.

Standing in the middle of one of the corridors of the House of Mystery, the organization's headquarters, Knight Leader crossed his arms and furrowed his brow. The man had to admit, still, that if he was going to endure much more exasperating behavior, he'd start to grow grey hair before he knew it. After all, mid-30s wasn't too young for that, no matter how he would attempt to court younger maidens like--

WHOOSH!



"IIIIIIT'S MICHIRIIIIIIIN!~"

...

Aha. Okay. A fellow member. Yes. Indeed.

Michiru Matsushima was never known for her stability as a person. Not in any dramatic way, as far as Knight Leader knew anyway. "Stability" didn't refer to her as damaged or anything, not that the man would really know about any of her possible traumas, but more so her ability to remain quiet and reserved for a given moment. Michiru had always been more... loud, for a lack of a better word. Not that she even really meant to most of the time; she was definitely more the type that reacted to other people who were loud and overly outgoing.

It was just that she reacted in an overly loud manner to loud people as well.

That said, it was a surprise that she would pop up so suddenly in front of Knight Leader, not just because of how spontaneous and sudden her appearance was, but also because he hadn't pegged her to be the type of person who would do so, not that he really knew that much about her admittedly. The man only knew her because of his activity as a "helper" of the MEU, though compared to other members of the organization, perhaps the blonde adolescent could be called an acquaintance.

"... Ah. Hello," Knight Leader spoke, greeting her rather plainly in return as his deadpan face betrayed his inner feeling of surprise, "What might you be doing here, young lady?" He inquired politely, living up to his title as a knight.

"Muughiii... I was hoping for a livelier reaction than that," the girl named Michiru grumbled lowly, before facing the older man in an upbeat manner, giving a catlike smile as her cat ears twitched eagerly and her tail wagged casually, "Oh, nothing really. I'd just been studying while that Carissa and the rest of the Coven went off on some recovery mission in a different mission... though I wonder what exactly they're recovering," she idly said, putting a gloved hand on her hip, "Either way, I may be a magical girl, but I'm also a normal girl too! And that means I have to study! That said..." Michiru continued, shyly twiddling her fingers.

"... Why does Math have to be so haaaard?"

She practically choked out those words, as though she were holding back distressed weeps.

The funny part was Knight Leader initially thought that by "studying," she meant reading up on different worlds, their conditions, or perhaps magic spells and the like, but of course, this was an interesting one too. After all, it made him remember one thing.

Everyone was still someone.

Even an irreverent, or rather overly bubbly girl like this had a life beyond this MEU business. She was just a grade schooler who had a home world to return to when this all said and done. She probably had friends and family back home whom she had to keep all this a secret from for all he knew. She had a place to go back to essentially.

He envied her in that regard. After the things he and Lady Carissa had done in the name of justice, in the name of protecting Britain, he couldn't bring himself to feel at home there. His sins might have been forgiven after the intent behind his and Carissa's actions were discovered, but sometimes, he had to wonder if he could forgive himself. He almost felt like a ghoul at home, feared by others around him, though even he knew the reality was that if anyone feared him for any reason, it was because of how powerful he was, and little more than that.

Still, it just felt strange. His life still existed for all intents and purposes back home, but... It wasn't the same. And it never would be.

...



"Oi. Oiiiii. Are you still in there, old man?" Michiru inquired, snapping her fingers in front of Knight Leader's eyes, to which the man would eventually blink and clear his throat.

Looked like he zoned out unexpectedly. Perhaps he really was getting old.

"A-Ah, bollocks. My apologies," he said, bowing his head ever so slightly as he'd return to reality, "In any case, I see. I'd forgotten how it was like to be as young as you are, when a normal child's concerns were their bloody studies," he sighed nostalgically, putting a hand on his hip, "In any case, off you go then if that'll be all. If you wish to maintain a healthy normal life, it starts with your education," Knight Leader continued sternly, giving a vibe similar to a father or a close friend of the father who was mysteriously wise around kids or something. Or was that just for his childhood?

"Besides, Lady Carissa might return from that mission at any given moment, and I'd need to be at her side once she returns."

"Ghngh... W-Well, the thing is..."

Growwwl.

"I was wondering if you'd wanna have a snack break with me?" She said shyly. Not really because she was asking a man to eat with her, as that seemed to fluster girls for some reason in his experience, but because she seemed self-conscious about her growling stomach.





Knight Leader appreciated silence and tranquility.

When you worked a hectic job as he did, you learned to appreciate the value of a moment's rest.

Granted, the House of Mystery was quite silent to begin with, considering most other members were either off on a mission, like Lady Carissa and a few others as mentioned earlier, or minding their own business, and if anything, young Michiru was the source of any disruption that there might have been, but at least now, Knight Leader didn't have to spend his introspection time in solitude. Now, he had the pleasure of company with a companion.

...

A somewhat overly zealous girl, but a nice girl nonetheless.

Deciding that there was little use for the magical girl outfit for the time being, Michiru had changed back into her normal outfit, which she deemed more comfortable anyway, if only because she didn't have to wear those cat ears and that tail.

Knight Leader didn't want to know how the tail stuck.

As the two of them sat across each other in the dining room at the table, helping themselves to some cheesecake made by the other blonde magical girl in the MEU, one Mami Tomoe, Knight Leader was still in deep thought, furrowing his brow a bit as his mind wandered back to the workings of the organization, trying to remember how he and Lady Carissa had even ended up working with the MEU in the first place.



It all started... shortly after the British Halloween.

The event that had changed everything for the two of them forever, and hopefully, the course of history as well. The fateful night where Lady Carissa, one of the three princesses of England alongside her two sisters Villian and Rimea, prepared to stage the greatest revolution the country had ever known. In the face of the rising power of the Roman Catholic Church in their world, Carissa had taken it upon herself to do one thing as a supporter of the Church of Necessarius. She was prepared to stage a coup. To overthrow her mother and become the new queen. To become a tyrant and stave off the coming influence of the church that she had opposed. To dispose of whoever would get in her way, even if that included her family.

Because to her, her country was the most important thing to her.

And yet, it was almost comedic how redundant her actions would be when a certain spiky-haired boy with an influential power no one could begin to process in his right hand would dismantle her efforts, and upon realizing her intentions, would promise that he would take it upon himself to defeat the Roman Catholic Church himself, without having to sacrifice what did not need to be sacrificed.

And just what was so bad about the Roman Catholic Church anyway?

Simple.

God's Right Seat.

A group of people bestowed with political power even greater than that of the Pope, led by Fiamma of the Right, a man who had gone mad with power and attempted to merge his world with another in order to rule over both. In essence, when Carissa carried out her coup, she wasn't doing it for her own sake. She was doing it to protect her country from the influence of evil. Knight Leader never knew patriotism finer than that. And he knew how loud and obnoxious Americans could be. Many would contend that she'd lost the plot, but in reality, he could see the blinding genius behind it, even if it all went to pot.

It was a shame that the end result was that it was all for nothing. Not that it failed. Fiamma of the Right was eventually defeated, but it wasn't him or Lady Carissa that defeated him. It was an unidentified group of people with special abilities, some of which were said to be even Espers of that blasted Academy City, that defeated him and whoever collaborated with him on his conquest. His whereabouts remain unknown to this day, as his body was never found, but for some reason, Knight Leader didn't fear for his return or anything.

Call it a hunch.

"Oi. You're doing the thing again."

Knight Leader blinked.

"I beg your pardon?"

"That thing! Where you look like you turn into a statue and just stop doing anything! You haven't touched your cake for a good minute, even after I took a bite out of yours!"

"You took a bite out of my cake?"

"... W-Well, two, to be exact."

The British man let out a sigh, continuing to eat his dessert after he was knocked out of his thoughts. Back on topic, to make a long story short, just after the failed British Halloween and World War III, Britain was in shambles. Carissa, in her attempts to save Britain, had done a number on it, and it was quite an embarrassing ordeal. Her relationship with her family, notably her sister Villian and mother Queen Elizard, had been soured. The details remain muddled to even Knight Leader, but Carissa had somehow managed to discover that the power of Curtana Original, her prized magical sword, was far greater than realized, and before she'd known it, she'd came across a group of women with power similar to hers in nature.

The Multiverse Emergency Unit.

And before either of them had known it, Carissa, free of pre-existing prejudice because of her past, quickly rose to become one of the leaders of the organization, the newest addition to the inner circle of leaders known as the Coven, thanks to her prowess in military command and physical power, among other qualities.

Of course, while Knight Leader was happy for Lady Carissa that she managed to escape prejudice, it looked like Knight Leader couldn't. After all, it looked like there was a reason that there weren't very men, if any at all, were in the organization.

"I still have to wonder... Why are they so damned balmy about men? Quite a load of tosh to be so uppity over letting a person in if they were to be a man," he idly wondered aloud.



"E-Eh? Where's this coming from?" Michiru inquired, blinking in surprise as the man would suddenly speak out. Wow, he said something. It was actually quite surprising.

Furrowing his brow, the man held his chin in thought as he continued to try to ponder why. "I mean... All it does is cause a bloody stir, considering I'm sure the organization has been gathering interest the more they do good. It seems counterproductive honestly."

Taking a sip of her tea, Michiru pondered his words, though to be honest, even with the multiversal translator spell, the Japanese girl found it hard to communicate aptly with the super-refined British man.

Scratching her head, she'd attempt to produce an answer. "W-Well... It's just that... It's just how it works, you know? I don't wanna make it sound like a kiddy thing, but it's like letting a boy into a girls club that they make in early grade school," Michiru stammered, unsure of what she was even really saying, "It's like tradition. We usually refer any guys interested in joining over to the Coalition, since they have their little magic branch too. We're like the elites, y'know!"

...

Knight Leader still wasn't convinced.



"If that's the case, why do you let that bloody dhampir work with you? He looks rather masculine if you ask me. It makes little sense."

What the devil was that man's name again? Satan... Angel-something or other? Definitely something relating to the Christian faith in an ironic manner.



"Jeeeeeez, I dunno! Why don't you ask someone in the Coven! Like your Carissa!" Michiru exclaimed in exasperation, sighing loudly, before taking a sip of her tea to compose herself, "I didn't ask to let him in! He sorta just butt in and let himself in! Or... I dunno, maybe he rubbed shoulders with someone in the Coven to get in. I know he's mushy with that Elizabeth girl, and Sabrina before she... y'know."

"I see," the gentleman nodded, before looking at Michiru, "Still, we should cease this train of conversation before it gets too far. Gossip is bad for camaraderie after all, and we're all on the same team."

"Geh, you're saying that like I'm the bad guy now! Muggghiii..." She sighed, before eventually finishing up her cake with a satisfied sigh, and then leaning back in her seat, before an idea popped in her head, "If you wanna be in the MEU so badly, why dontcha ask Carissa? A member of the Coven must have that kinda authority, right?"

"I don't want so badly to join the MEU," he shot back quickly, "I was simply remarking that if you were to set down some rules, you ought to either abide by them or change them to suit the situation. The only one I will serve will be Lady Carissa and whoever would aid her."

"Ah... I see. So that's how she sees you, eh? The kind of bodyguard to wave around proudly like a trophy?"



Michiru couldn't resist once the image popped into her head.

Knight Leader gave her a glare, spine-chilling enough that Michiru quickly added in some stammering.

"I-I was just kidding! It was a joke! H-Honeeeessst!"

Sighing, the man relaxed his glare and briefly massaged the bridge of his nose. This Michiru Matsushima was quite the colorful character indeed. There certainly could have been worse people to have tea and cheesecake with at the very least.

Ahem.

Though, speak the devil's name, and he shall appear.

Or she, in this case.

Just as the conversation between Knight Leader and Michiru wound down, a certain princess would appear in the doorway, appearing in peripheral vision of the man.

Lady Carissa of the MEU Coven herself.



"I didn't expect to see you helping yourself to some frivolities, but I suppose even you have your cravings for a quiet day too, no?" The young woman spoke with a knowing gaze. Carissa had always exuded a strange aura about her, a queenly mien that conveyed strong authority that could easily intimidate the weak-willed.

"U-Uuuu..."

Like Michiru.



Who was shaking in her seat.

Even though she didn't really know why.

"Indeed, Lady Carissa. I trust that you had a safe and fruitful mission?"

"I did," Carissa nodded, "The anomaly that we detected turned out to be... Well, perhaps it would be better if you were to take a look at the specimen yourself. Come, Knight Leader. We may need your help," she instructed, signaling him to follow her with her finger as she'd turn around and leave the room. Knight Leader would raise a quizzical eyebrow at Carissa's usage of the word "specimen," but didn't comment on it, instead choosing to simply stand up and begin to walk, following her, but not before giving Michiru a brief bow and a "M'lady" befitting that of a genuinely refined gentleman.

Upon reaching where Carissa would lead him, a room where a human-sized pod would be seen laying on a long table, Knight Leader would furrow his brow. In response to the facial movement, Carissa would speak up to explain the sight before him.

"When we discovered the woman's body inside, we were able to sense a significant amount of magical energy emanating from her body. No doubt she's quite powerful... Or rather, she would be if she were conscious, but on the off chance that we were to awaken, she could be a threat, depending on how evil she might turn out to be," Carissa spoke, though this only mystified Knight Leader more.

"Woman...?"

"For that reason, we put her in this magically reinforced pod so that if she'd prematurely awaken, she wouldn't be able to get out, but now that I've returned with the other girls, I'm sure we'd be able to restrain her," Carissa spoke, before stepping back and letting Knight Leader take the reins, "All yours. Go ahead and open your present," she said dryly.

With a nod, the British man took a sigh, before drawing his sword. His most prized possession, Hrunting. Stepping over, he would thrust his blade into the small gap between the pod's inner wall and where the door closed, and with sheer physical strength that exceeded what one would expect from a man in his mid to late 30s, he would manage to pry the pod open, a musty smell filling the room.

Why did magic air have to smell strange?

Upon opening the pod, Knight Leader's eyes would widen a bit in mild surprise, before tilting his head to examine the girl that Carissa and the others had found in their investigation.



"..."

A regular sleeping beauty, eh? Knight Leader thought to himself, sheathing his sword, though he kept part of it open, just in case Carissa's suspicions would prove correct.

"So this is it? She certainly has a strange look to her," the man spoke, continuing to examine her, making note of what appeared to be a sizable object on top of her chest that almost resembled some strange combination between a bass instrument and a combat shield. Her clothing consisted of crosses and armor, as if to imply she were some holy knight.

What the devil was her story?

"So it seems," Carissa nodded, cupping her chin briefly, "I wonder... if we could--"

"N-Nnnh..."

"?!"

Knight Leader blinked in surprise, instinctively taking a step back when the nameless silver-haired woman would shift a bit, making a soft sound as her eyes slowly opened.



"..."

After a brief, uncomfortable pause, the woman would finally speak.

"Where... Where am I?"

Ah. So she wasn't a feral beast in maiden's clothing after all. Not with that pure face. Fully sheathing Hrunting now, he offer his hand to her to help her get up.

"You're in the House of Mystery, miss. I am Knight Leader, and this is Lady Carissa," he spoke, politely introducing himself. The girl, groaning softly as she adjusted to consciousness, slowly took hold of Knight Leader's hand and let herself be helped up, "The Multiverse Emergency Unit saw you unconscious on an investigation missing and came back here so you could recover. Might I inquire what your name is, miss?"

"My name... is... Riesbyfe. Riesbyfe Stridberg."

...

Even Knight Leader had to admit to himself that that was an odd name.

It was at this point in time that those present within the room had no idea of knowing just how inherently important this woman was.

For she had information that would change how people would understand the Murder Games.

Soon, everything would change.

Because she talk like a crazy
Making my bed up
Messing with the future
When she know I got to get up
Cannot break this silence
 
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