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How I Saved History (Fate/Grand Order SI)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Charles Flynn, Apr 22, 2020.

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  1. ArKFallen

    ArKFallen _____

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    A very nice tidying up; Charlie's tone is also genuine, I can believe he has faith and is soul-tired. I should be at the next one if the Follow function works the way I think it does.
     
  2. wryyyyy

    wryyyyy Getting sticky.

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    hmm in the original timeline gil,s team was tomoe, ibaraki, amakus, leonida, ushiwakamaru, benkei, and fuuma
    what,s the team in this timeline
     
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  3. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    Odyssey, Dyomedes, Merlin, Perseus.

    These are the ones I remember.
     
  4. Charles Flynn

    Charles Flynn Not too sore, are you?

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    Odysseus as Archer, Merlin as Caster, Leonidas as Lancer, Perseus as Rider, and Diomedes as Berserker. Sigmund (Sigurd's dad) was summoned as their team's Saber, and died stopping Girtablilu. And, of course, Heracles was summoned as Gilgamesh's Assassin. He was present in a little more than half of the Babylonia chapters.
     
  5. Illariai

    Illariai Know what you're doing yet?

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    Y'know, Flynn quite possibly made it onto the throne of heroes. Not for power, not for a great history, but as that one guy who somehow pulled off the impossible, even as he sacrificed himself.

    Plus, Chaldea now likely has Goetia as an assistant, not to mention that Flynn will likely make a dramatic return from the grave when he is needed the most.
     
  6. HelloThereItsMeGeralt

    HelloThereItsMeGeralt Getting sticky.

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    As much I would love to see this, I do not think there are many who would like to see MC back. As for thrones, his legend is not known yes? How many will know and believe it?

    Charles Flynn, where is that home? Where MC end up?
     
  7. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    He either ended up in the afterlife, or that was some kind of hallucination before he died.
     
  8. Charles Flynn

    Charles Flynn Not too sore, are you?

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    Indeed. The necromancy he proposed wouldn't bring the real him back, it would just use the soul fragments he left behind to reanimate his corpse, leaving it an abomination in neverending pain, forced to obey its master's orders, in a fate worse than death. If he ended up on the Throne, it would only ever be as a Counter Guardian.

    He's dead. He's not coming back, not really, no matter what Chaldea uses his corpse for. As for where he ended up, that's open to interpretation.
     
  9. Potates

    Potates Are ya ready kids?!

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    Next Isekai smash hit: I Saved the World and Died In the Process but Instead of Going to a Proper Afterlife I Ended Up in a Generic Medieval Fantasy World with My Dog Where All The Knights are Small Girls Who Want to Give Me Their Pantsu for Some Reason.
     
  10. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    I'm guessing that if Wodime gets revived in the sequel then his condition is going to be different than just being in eternal pain?

    Given some of the anime that have been made I can see this happening.
     
  11. Charles Flynn

    Charles Flynn Not too sore, are you?

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    Wodime's in a different situation. His soul hadn't moved on yet, which is how the Alien God was capable of making its offer.

    Flynn got the same offer (because Wodime is just flat-out too damn nice) and turned it down. He's gone. The necromantic Master that Chaldea will make from his remains is less Lazarus, more Pet Sematary.
     
  12. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    Right forgot that he was still alive.

    Well if you can call his current condition alive at any rate.

    Achilles better watch his heel then.
     
  13. HelloThereItsMeGeralt

    HelloThereItsMeGeralt Getting sticky.

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    So, will we see necromantic Flynn in sequel?

    Oh poo, no Grand Avenger.

    Silver W. King, when will Chaldea on fire update? Or is it abandoned, please clarify if it is, so I can stop hoping for it to come back and stop re-reading it.
     
  14. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    On one hand knowing that his body is going to be in constant agony is sad.

    On the other hand I'm imagining several funny scenes of it falling apart in some awkward situations.

    Like this:

     
  15. Narmish

    Narmish Know what you're doing yet?

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    If Flynn had taken the deal, what would his Lostbelt have been?
     
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  16. Silver W. King

    Silver W. King King of Adventures

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    I can't believe the fucking notification system didn't tell me that the epilogue was up. :mad:

    Thanks for one hell of an original and engaging story, and I will most definitely follow the sequel when it's up, as your stories are really captivating to see and how the events in it will play out.

    Your writing was one of the things that cheered me up, whenever a new chapter came up. :D

    Thank you.

    See it at Christmas.

    Probably. Maybe. I sure hope so.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2020
  17. HelloThereItsMeGeralt

    HelloThereItsMeGeralt Getting sticky.

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    May you suffer from org**m blocks till you update it.
     
  18. Charles Flynn

    Charles Flynn Not too sore, are you?

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    A question: I was thinking of posting a few sidestories, called the Lost Files, detailing some of the microsingularities that I glossed over, starting with the one featuring Attila and Duryodhana. Just to keep myself in practice between projects. But I wouldn't want to beat a dead horse, here.

    Is anyone interested? If so, then I'll put the first one up.
     
  19. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    We get to see Duryodhana and Attila, along with whatever insanity they bring?

    Please do it, we need it more than life itself.

    Can you also post a side story of Charlie dealing with Vlads Santa phase?
     
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  20. Extras: Lost Files: The Copenhagen Grail War Part 1
    Charles Flynn

    Charles Flynn Not too sore, are you?

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    We materialize in an alleyway, the city’s racket immediately enveloping us.

    I activate my communicator. “Roman? Still in contact?”

    His hologram flickers into being in front of me. “Yes. You’re coming through loud and clear. Any indication of what’s causing the Singularity?”

    “None so far.”

    This might be the weirdest Singularity we’ve faced yet. I mean, of all the potential points to create a disruption in the Human Order, why would you pick Copenhagen in 1995? But still, a Grail’s a Grail. I turn to my team. Siegfried, Erik (because we needed someone familiar with the general region), Medea, and Cursed Arm. Since half the mana engines are down for repairs at the moment, I can only bring four Servants, and I had to make sure that they wouldn’t be total prana hogs.

    Cursed Arm, scout ahead. Medea, start scanning the leylines, see if there’s somewhere we can set up shop. Erik, Siegfried, you’re with me.

    They all nod in agreement. With the enemy unknown, the best thing to do at the moment is lay low, keep our heads down, and try to get the shape of things.

    “This is the alley, right?” a man’s voice asks, as two sets of footsteps make their way towards us.

    “If I have read the runes right, yes,” a woman says.

    Okay, plan A looks to be shot. Those are clearly Servants. Time for plan B.

    Cursed Arm, get me up to the roof level right now! Medea, disguise yourself as me!

    They comply without hesitation, and soon, I watch from two stories up as the mysterious Servants come face to face with “me,” flanked by Erik and Siegfried.

    I don’t recognize either of them. The man is rough, with short gray hair, and features that would make him a prettyboy heartbreaker if it wasn’t for the scars. He dresses like a biker, and keeps his posture hunched over, constantly glancing around for some sort of threat. The woman is tall, elegant and graceful, with long, silver hair that has a blue tinge to it. She’s less aggressive and wary than her companion, but she still carries herself with the quiet confidence that I’ve come to associate with Heroic Spirits.

    Alright, going over various stratagems with my Servants to ensure that I don’t get instantly pulped the second Galahad isn’t there to protect me has really paid off.

    “So. You the Master of Chaldea?” the unknown man asks bluntly as he looks at Medea. “Scrawnier than I expected, that’s for sure.”

    “Well, that depends on who’s asking,” Medea says smoothly, and I can tell from experience that she’s casting a concealed lie-detection spell as she talks.

    “I’m Sinfjotli, son of Sigmund and Signy, and grandson of the great King Volsung!” Sinfjotli announces proudly, not even hesitating to shout his True Name for all to hear. “The legendary hero of the Saga of the Volsungs, and greatest of all the Volsungs!” His female companion gives him an amused look. “Don’t you dare confuse me for my disappointment of a brother!”

    I feed Medea a line and get the mental impression of a raised eyebrow in turn. She still asks, though. “Helgi or Sigurd?”

    “Both!”

    I try not to laugh.

    “Right,” Medea says, evidently deciding to just roll with it. She turns towards the woman. “And you are?”

    “I am Brynnhildr. A Valkyrie formerly in service to Odin,” she says primly, evidently not wishing to share any more.

    “She’s my sister-in-law,” Sinfjotli adds. “So, now that we’ve introduced ourselves, come on! Our team is waiting back at the bar!”

    “Well, are you friend or foe?” Medea asks. “I really think we should clear that up before I go anywhere with you.”

    “Friend, obviously!” Sinfjotli says with a huff. “Now come on, move your ass! We’ve been waiting for you guys to show up for almost a week!”

    Medea, are they telling the truth?

    Yes.

    “So, just to clarify, you mean us no harm, and wish to be our allies, yes?”

    “I just said that! Yes!” Sinfjotli rolls his eyes.

    If that’s all true, then we might as well follow them,’ I admit.

    I don’t like this, Apprentice.

    Me neither. It feels too convenient. But, well, we do need information. And from what I’ve read of the Saga of the Volsungs, Sinfjotli’s volatile. Refusing would alienate him.’ I turn my focus to another Servant. ‘Cursed Arm, take me back down.

    Both Norse heroes jump as Cursed Arm and I land, but they’ve recovered their cool by the time I get out of the princess carry and turn to face them.

    “Very well then, Son of Sigmund. We’ll accept your offer of hospitality. Lead the way.”

    “So you were- the whole time-“ Sinfjotli looks between me, Medea, and the roof in shock. “Then…”

    Brynnhildr tugs on his ear. “Brother, you’re being rude.”

    “Yeah, yeah.” He sighs. “This way.”

    The two of them lead us through the streets, and, as we’re walking, Siegfried makes his way up towards Sinfjotli.

    “So, uh, Sinfjotli.”

    “Yeah?” Sinfjotli asks, raising an eyebrow.

    “I’m Siegfried. You probably haven’t heard of me-“

    “You’re my glory-hogging little brother’s German knockoff. Get to the point.”

    “Oh. I’m sorry, then. I wouldn’t want to waste your time…”

    “Too late.”

    “Oh.” He falls silent.

    Sinfjotli raises an eyebrow. “You gonna say anything else?”

    “Well, I didn’t want to waste your time. If me talking is a bother, then…”

    “No, it’s fine. Just cut to the point.”

    “Well, I was wondering if you could tell me about your father,” Siegfried says.

    “Why?”

    “Well, Sigurd and I have a lot in common, and we both never got to meet our fathers. I just thought that, since we’re so much alike, our fathers might be the same. Maybe I could get to know what kind of man my father was by asking about yours.”

    Sinfjotli raises an eyebrow. “Alright, then.”

    “Really?”

    “Sure. If your dad’s anything like mine, then he deserves a son who knows how awesome he was,” Sinfjotli says with a grin. “But I’m only telling you once, so you’d damn better listen well, alright Fake Sigurd?”

    “Of course. Thank you.” Siegfried frowns. “Wait, Fake Sigurd?”

    “Yeah, yeah, do something cool enough, and I’ll remember your name, all right?”

    “I killed a dragon.”

    “Yeah, like that means anything,” Sinfjotli snorts. “Even Sigurd killed a dragon! I’d’ve killed five dragons, if my bitch of a stepmom hadn’t poisoned me. And I would’ve done it like a real man, instead of just pussing out and stabbing it in the belly!”

    “Of course,” Siegfried says neutrally, keeping his face impassive. “So, I’m sorry to interrupt, but…”

    “Yeah, yeah. So, I didn’t actually know that my dad was my dad when I first met him. I just thought he was my uncle.” Sinfjotli pauses. “I mean, he actually is my uncle, and he didn’t know that he was my dad either, but…”

    The story is still going when we reach the bar, where I’m the first one at the door, having been drawn to the front of the procession by my fascination with the story.

    "So, Sinfjotli, Brynnhildr, the rest of your team is inside?"

    My guides both nod, so I open the door to the bar.

    And then immediately close it.

    Nope.

    "Flynn? Is that you?" Attila shouts from inside. "Come, join us!"

    "Yes!" Duryodhana bellows. "We need someone to judge our arm-wrestling competition!"

    Nope.
     
  21. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    Ah, Norse family drama.

    It's not on the same level as the Greek ones, but it has its own great moments.

    Yes!
     
  22. EVA-Saiyajin

    EVA-Saiyajin Well worn.

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    Aww, Siegfried made a maybe-friend.
     
  23. Hammers_Bjorn

    Hammers_Bjorn The Bear with the Hammer

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    Rest ye weary head, me lad, and greet death like an old friend.

    ... Huh. This might well be the first finished non-one shot fic I've read in QQ, and an FGO one at that! Congrats! It was a thrilling ride all the way, although it would've been nice to see the fallout of Flynn's death.
     
  24. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    We'll most likely see the fallout in the sequel.

    Or the author can post a side story for it.
     
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  25. Me. Joka-r

    Me. Joka-r Making the rounds.

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    Dio situation honestly , cause I expected a lot of things when they went to the site like an ambush but Attila and Duryodhana wrestling was not one of them, buff bois( also killers of massive amount of people, if myth are real in Duryodhana's case but who cares about that).
     
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  26. HelloThereItsMeGeralt

    HelloThereItsMeGeralt Getting sticky.

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    I am not aware much about Attila, but Duryodhana was an "Ardent worshipper?" of wrestling. He and Bheema (Elder Brother of Arjun) were competitors of the sport, along with fighting with Mace.

    And Duryodhana being a somewhat meathead was an important character of his myth anyways.

    And Charles Flynn do not dare to hold back. With at least one more year till the completion of Lostbelts in JP [two years in NA?] we need content.

    Silver W. King learn something. This guy is posting non-stop at the very least you can reply like "Remember when you tried to sleep with both at once?"
     
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  27. Extras: Lost Files: The Copenhagen Grail War Part 2
    Charles Flynn

    Charles Flynn Not too sore, are you?

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    “Duryodhana and Attila are the other members of your faction?” I ask Brynnhildr incredulously.

    “Well, yes. They’re actually why we were waiting for you,” Brynnhildr says. “They thought that you would help us when you showed up. According to Duryodhana, you owe him a favor.”

    “Yeah, that’s-“ I stop and think about it. I mean, if Duryodhana hadn’t sabotaged and betrayed Edison, then I likely would’ve died. Especially since, if he hadn’t tipped off Nero, Edison’s doomsday device would’ve worked, leading to the destruction of human history. He saved the world, and my life. I sigh. “-true. All right. What’s he cashing in this favor of his for?”

    “Somebody organized a Grail War,” she says. “Multiple Servants, albeit with an unequal distribution of classes, each without a Master, all summoned to fight for the Holy Grail.”

    “I’m familiar with the concept.”

    “We don’t know who’s behind it. But Attila and Duryodhana both figured that, in light of the larger crisis, we Servants should band together, so that we could help Chaldea secure the Grail when you arrived.”

    That- Huh.

    “Well, what other Servants are out there?”

    “We were the only ones that they found.”

    I sigh, and then turn about, open the door, and step into the bar. “All right, I’m in.”

    “Splendid!” Attila cheers through gritted teeth, arm-wrestling Duryodhana with a fearful intensity. “Take a seat!”

    I comply, taking a bar stool, and the Servants follow me in. Erik, Sinfjotli, and Siegfried take a booth, and Brynhilldr joins them. Hassan is presumably using Presence Concealment, because I can’t see him anywhere, and Medea takes the stool next to me.

    Are you sure this is a good idea, Apprentice?

    They proved themselves to be quite thoroughly on our side in previous Singularities, and I presume that you’ve been running truth spells.

    Those can be falsified, if you know what you’re doing.

    I hear a loud crash, and the sound of splintering wood, and I turn to see Attila and Duryodhana both looking at the splinters of their table in disappointment.

    “Another draw, then?” Duryodhana asks with a grin.

    “Of course.” Attila turns to me. “Flynn! Come on over here, you!”

    “King Attila. King Duryodhana.” I nod politely to both. “It’s a pleasure to see you again.” I look around the almost-empty bar. “May I ask what happened to this place’s clientele?”

    “Oh, Brynnhildr warded the place to keep unwanted visitors out,” Attila says with an airy wave. “Anyways, welcome aboard!”

    I look between the two of them. “So, do you have any idea what’s going on with this specific Grail War? Because…” I’m cut off by a yawn.

    “Brynnhildr didn’t really give you a clear picture of what’s going on?” Duryodhana finishes for me. “Don’t worry. We’re as confused as you are. We were just summoned in without any information on this particular Grail War’s rules.” He blinks.

    “So, I guess our…” I yawn again. “…first priority is to…”

    The world goes fuzzy, and then I’m slumped over.

    ---​

    I wake up with a start. Sonnuvabitch, we got wiped! I look around desperately, trying to figure out where the hell I am right now.

    “Sweet! You’re finally awake!” a weirdly familiar voice says. “Now we can finally get this party started!”

    Alright, I’m tied to a chair, in a completely dark room. Things are looking somewhat bleak.

    Then the lights go on, and things get weird.

    The room, now revealed to me by the lights, is an abomination against interior décor. The floor tiles alternate between a deep purple and a bright orange, and the wallpaper has neon pink polka dots on green background. But perhaps the most noticeable feature of the room is who’s standing at the center of it.

    Tom Hiddleston?

    Yeah, no, if things are getting this weird to start with, then the 1959 Kennedy Assassination Attempt might lose its status as “Weirdest Singularity Ever.”

    “Oh!” My captor grins. “You know my host?”

    Host. That would indicate…

    “You’re a Pseudo-Servant, aren’t you?”

    “The one and only Loki, at your service,” the newly identified god of mischief says. “Now pipe down, the camera’s going to start rolling in a minute or two.”

    “But… aren’t Pseudo-Servants formed from people involved with Grail Wars?”

    He just grins and keeps looking at the camera we’re both facing.

    "Hel-lo Denmark! This is your lovable host, Loki, welcoming you back to everybody’s favorite game show, Grail Wars! Now, let me introduce my co-host and hostage, Charles Flynn! Everybody give him a big round of applause!”

    There’s a moment of silence, and then he taps a button or two, and canned applause plays from the room’s speakers.

    “Chuck, any words for the audience?”

    Please don’t call me that.”

    “Sure thing, Chad m’lad! Now, then, lets meet our contestants!” With a wave of his hand, profiles of my Servants pop up.

    “That’s… that might actually be worse!”

    “Now, for you newcomers to the show, here’s how this is going to work: We’ll be splitting each team into two groups of four, and then pitting those groups against each other, to fight to the death until there are exactly four survivors! Those two groups of four survivors will then continue to fight, until only one remains, and they will have the chance to fight me for the Holy Grail! Any questions?”

    Several, actually!”

    “Don’t care! Group A includes Brynnhildr, Attilla, Medea, and Hassan-i-Sabbah of the Cursed Arm! Get out there and kill things for our amusement!”

    “So, who’s on the enemy team?” I ask, as Loki slouches down into a beanbag chair.

    “You’ll find out.” Mist pours out from a soda can on the floor, creating some sort of holographic image of the four Servant he designated as Group A.

    I… am so goddamn confused right now.

    “Anyways, you and me? We’re the announcers and the judges.”

    ` “Of what? How is this a show? WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK IS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW!

    “Ratings.”

    I stare at Loki. He just smirks back at me.

    And then I scream in pure frustration while he laughs his ass off.

    WHY DID I EVER TAKE THIS DAMN JOB?
     
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  28. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    I have very little idea of what's happening and I love it.

    Keep it up.
     
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  29. Hammers_Bjorn

    Hammers_Bjorn The Bear with the Hammer

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    When in doubt, remember that Loki suffered for who knows how long, tied down by the transfigured entrails of his son, continously dropped snake venom, after the whole Baldr thing. Also, remember that for all of his pomp amd pagentry, in the end, at Ragnarok, Loki died knowing that his revenge meant jack shit, everything is just going to spin around in an endless cycle of death-and-rebirth, and that Heimdall got the last word in.

    Remember, that all your frustrations and suffering is nothing for the sheer amount of salt Loki is going to feel at the Twilight of the Gods.
     
  30. Extras: The Lost Files: The Copenhagen Grail War Part 3
    Charles Flynn

    Charles Flynn Not too sore, are you?

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    All right, all right. Time to review the facts.

    Fact #1: I’ve been kidnapped by Loki, the Norse God of Mischief and Lies, who is currently possessing Tom Hiddleston in order to function as a Pseudo-Servant.

    Fact #2: Loki has the Holy Grail.

    Fact #3: Loki is using the Holy Grail and my status as a hostage in order to set up some sort of… Grail War game show?

    I watch the screens Loki’s set up as Cursed Arm fades away from view, leaving only Attila, Brynhilldr and Medea visible.

    “So… just to be clear, the enemy team will show up soon, right?” I ask.

    Loki nods. “Yep, I’m actually proud of the team composition this time. I really think I nailed it.”

    “Okay, but why are you doing this?

    “Quiet. Drama is happening.” He waves a hand and suddenly, I can hear the voices of the arguing Heroic Spirits.

    ---​

    “And I keep telling you that we need to advance on the enemy position!” Attila snaps, looming over Medea.

    “Oh, the stupid barbarian wants to charge HEADFIRST into ENEMY TERRITORY!” my teacher shouts, sounding angrier than I’ve ever heard her. “Why would I expect anything else!”

    “Strong forward momentum coupled with an overwhelming advantage is a valid strategy,” Attila says, struggling to regain his cool. “If we hit them early enough, before they have time to pull together defenses, or a proper strategy, we can take them off guard.”

    “Or run headfirst into their defenses!” Medea replies. “Of course, I’m not surprised that you don’t know jack about defending fixed positions, seeing as, if you had any skill whatsoever in that field, you wouldn’t have gotten my apprentice kidnapped!”

    “Okay, this has gone on long enough,” Brynnhildr interrupts, trying to get between the two quarrelling Heroic Spirits. “Can we please just all calm down and focus on the matter at hand?”

    “Oh, I’m so sorry that I couldn’t predict that the literal God of Trickery and Deception showing up out of nowhere to pull a fast one on us!” Attila says, crossing his arms. “And I didn’t see you doing any better.”

    “Not that it’s even the first time you’ve gotten my apprentice kidnapped.” Medea glares at the barbarian warlord. “I told him we shouldn’t have trusted you.”

    “Are you calling me a traitor?” Attila asks, dangerously calm.

    “If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and stabs you in the back like a godsbedamned traitor, then it’s probably a traitor,” Medea replies, spell arrays already springing up behind her, as Attila grips his sword.

    “Mind your words, Witch of Betrayal. I’m not afraid to hit a woman.”

    “Okay, ENOUGH!” Brynnhildr shouts, driving her spear into the ground between them. “WE ARE NOT EACH OTHER’S ENEMIES! LOKI IS OUR ENEMY! AND WE NEED TO FIGHT HIM, NOT EACH OTHER!”

    Medea and Attila look at each other for a moment, and then reluctantly put their weapons away. And then they walk off in opposite directions, leaving Brynnhildr flabbergasted.

    “W-Wait, where are you guys going?” she asks, looking between the two.

    “Away from her!” Attila bellows, at the exact same time that Medea shouts, “Away from him!

    And Brynnhildr is left alone.

    ---​

    Back in the observation room, I look at the screens in disbelief. “They just… what? I mean, WHY IN GOD’S NAME DID THEY SPLIT UP?”

    “It’s simple, really,” Loki says, smiling merrily. “Heroic Spirits are volatile. A competent leader, or a pressing enough cause for cooperation, can unite them, but the more you pack in. the bigger the destructive fallout when their unifying force is gone.”

    “They split the party,” I observe, staring at the screens as I come to terms with the fact that I am probably a dead man.

    “Well, they still have a chance, actually,” Loki notes. “Their opposition did the exact same thing.”

    “What? Why?” The tactical ineptitude on display here hurts my soul.

    “They all wanted a one-on-one fight against their arch-nemeses.”

    “Arch-?”

    “Just sit back and watch.” Loki brings an imaginary microphone to his lips, and then starts talking in his best announcer’s voice. “And it looks like we’re going to see our first fight of the day, folks! The clash of two bitter ex-lovers, a startling showcase of how the deepest of loving bonds can go wrong, it’s JASON VERSUS MEDEA!”

    ---​

    The screens all shift to display my teacher, already setting up her Territory.

    Medea freezes mid spell, and then turns to face one of the buildings. Then she fires a full power laser at the façade, forcing Jason to come rolling out into the open, swearing up a storm.

    “Did you really think that you could hide from me?” she asks, her voice smooth and menacing. “Did you really think that you could beat me with stealth?”

    “Guess I’ll just have to beat you the old-fashioned way, then,” Jason says, drawing his sword. “Then, once I win the Holy Grail, I’m going to wish that I’d left your crazy ass in Colchis.”

    Medea bristles, her air of menace lost.

    “Oh, I’m the crazy one, am I?” she snaps, voice considerably less smooth. “I’m the crazy one. Typical. The moment I can’t give you anything that you want, well, of course I’m suddenly some crazy bitch who’s just too. Damn. Clingy! Of course I’ve got to go! Look at Medea, trusting that her husband would keep his word! THAT CRAZY BITCH HAS GOT TO GO!”

    “You killed our kids and my new wife because you couldn’t handle the divorce,” Jason shoots back, gesturing with his sword. “BY DEFINITION, YOU ARE THE CRAZY ONE HERE!”

    “I punished you for your faithlessness!” Medea says with a snarl. “I gave you everything! I killed My brother for you! I helped you get the Fleece! I killed your uncle Pelias for you!”

    “And I never asked you to kill your brother! Or Uncle Pelias! I never wanted you to butt in! You got me banished from my hometown after I went through a quest across the entirety of the known world so that I could be King there!” Jason crosses his arms. “And I don’t seem to remember my wife or my children doing anything to merit punishment. Of course, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe they were just the most faithless people ever.”

    “They deserved to die for aiding in your crimes!” Medea snaps.

    “Do you even remember my wife’s name?” Jason asks. “Because I don’t think you do. You don’t care about other people’s lives, Medea. You just see them as tools. The only value you place on human life is whether ending it will get you what you want! And the minute you wanted to hurt me, YOU KILLED YOUR OWN CHILDREN!”

    “Oh, I’m manipulative, am I?” Medea replies. “You promised me the world, and then you tossed me out the second you couldn’t use me!”

    “I NEVER WANTED TO MARRY YOU IN THE FIRST PLACE!”

    ---​

    I turn to Loki. “Should we be listening in on this? It feels uncomfortably domestic.”

    “Yeah. I really thought that this would be more… epic. But instead it’s just so damn awkward to watch.” The screens turn away from Medea and Jason’s uncomfortably public argument,

    “So… You made the enemy team entirely out of my faction’s arch-enemies?”

    “Pretty much, yeah. Really hoping that the matches don’t just develop into screaming at each other, though.” He perks up. “And here we have our second fight!”

    I look, as the screens shift to instead display Brynnhildr and Attila. And a cheerful-looking blonde woman skipping towards them.

    ---​

    “Look, I’m sure that I can talk her into apologizing,” Brynnhildr says. “We need to stick together, otherwise, we’ll just get picked off one by one if they form a coordinated attack party.”

    “We didn’t, actually!” the blonde woman says, her voice at once both melodic and irrepressibly cheerful. Her hair is done up into two golden braids. She’s full-figured, looking like one of Wagner’s Valkyries, and wears a green dress. Her smile is… The more I look at it, the more it seems… off. “We all wanted to take you on properly, as individuals!”

    Both Attila and Brynnhildr freeze at the sight of her. Brynnhildr’s hands are shaking, while Attila’s face is pale.

    “Oh, is that you, Atli?” the woman asks, her smile growing. “Oh, it’s so good to see you again! I’ve really improved the recipe for those delightful little snacks I served at our last party together!” Attila’s entire body is trembling. “But I need a taste-tester, and I found myself thinking, ‘Who better than my darling husband?’”

    Attila turns, and then runs away like all the hordes of Hell are chasing him.

    “Aww… I really have improved my cooking since last time,” the woman says, and… oh. Oh, of course it’s her. That makes sense. “But I guess that means that we can finally catch up, Bryn! Just us girls, you know?”

    “Gudrun,” Brynnhildr snarls, every inch of her body trembling with barely constrained hatred. “You’re here.”

    “Of course I am, silly!” Gudrun of the Gjukungs says, her arms and armor de-astralizing. She’s still smiling. “I mean, how could I pass up the chance to kill the woman who murdered my husband?”

    “SIGURD WAS MINE!” Brynhilldr roars, lunging forwards with her spear in hand, only for Gudrun to deflect it with her shield. “BEFORE YOU STOLE HIM FROM ME!”

    “I didn’t have a choice!” Gudrun shouts back, as the dance of steel begins in earnest between the two loves of the Last Volsung. “My mother was the one who slipped him the forgetfulness potion! And frankly, he deserved better than you anyways!”

    Brynhildr gives a wordless scream of fury, as she brings her spear down like a club, smoldering with fire runes. Gudrun dodges easily, rage clouding her opponent’s mind and dulling Brynhildr’s skill.

    “YOU STOLE HIM FROM ME!”

    “And you killed him!” Gudrun shouts back, her hateful tone a stark contrast to the wide, sunny smile on her face. “You killed him with trickery and lies, and you were always trying to kill him, EVEN WHEN HE WAS YOURS! Why would I let you have him? I loved him! Why would I let you keep him, knowing that you would never stop hurting him!”

    “YOU MADE ME KILL HIM!”

    “No, you didn’t even kill him yourself! You poisoned my brothers against him, against me! You had Guttorm kill him in the night, while he was sleeping, and then you talked them into burning my son alive with you as part of my husband’s FUNERAL PYRE! YOU TOOK HIM AWAY FROM ME, AND YOU DIDN’T EVEN LET ME GRIEVE FOR HIM!” Gudrun’s still smiling, even as she pushes Brynhildr back, but it’s shed the illusion of cheerfulness, becoming instead a mad rictus of hatred. “I WATCHED HIM DIE! I WOKE UP TO HOLD MY HUSBAND IN MY ARMS AS HE DIED, IN OUR BED, WITH MY LITTLE BROTHER’S BIFURCATED CORPSE NOT FIVE FEET AWAY, AND THEN I HAD TO SIT AND WATCH AS YOU HIJACKED MY HUSBAND’S FUNERAL TO MAKE IT ALL ABOUT YOU, AND YOUR ELABORATE MURDER-SUICIDE!

    “You…” Brynnhildr falters as she stares at Gudrun, and Gudrun doesn’t fail to capitalize on the opening.

    “So here’s what’s going to happen,” Gudrun snarls. “I’m going to kill you. I’m going to kill Atli. And then I’m going to kill anyone else I have to to make sure I get the Grail. And then I’m going to make it so that I died that night, instead of Sigurd.”

    Brynnhildr freezes. “Why would you…”

    Gudrun’s sword takes the fallen valkyrie’s head clean off in one smooth stroke.

    “Because it should have been me. And because he deserves a better woman than either of us.”

    ---​

    Loki looks at me, and I look back.

    “That was… intense.” I hazard.

    “You’re telling me,” the God of Mischief says with a rueful laugh. “But still, first death, and it’s a dramatic one! The ratings must be climbing!”

    Right, not rising to the bait. I look back at the screens, where it shows Gudrun catching her breath and then strolling off, as Brynhildr’s headless corpse dissolves behind her.

    “Oh, and Attila’s met his enemy!” Loki crows, as the screens flip over to display…

    “You turned Romulus into an Alter?” I ask incredulously.

    “Yeah… Attila was a hard man to find a nemesis for.”

    On the screens, the two enemies face off.

    ---​

    “My children… my people…” the Blackened Romulus moans. “Oh, my Roma has fallen.”

    “Hm. You know, the version of you I met before wasn’t nearly this emo,” Attila says, dancing between his opponent’s spear-thrusts.

    “I must save them!” Romulus Alter bellows. “With the Grail in hand, I will save them!”

    Attila smirks. “You won’t. After all, you’re the one who doomed them.”

    Romulus Alter shrieks in fury, and then raises his spear high to unleash his Noble Phantasm, only for Attila to slice open his unguarded belly.

    The fight is brief, and brutal, and through it all, Attila keeps up a running commentary.

    “You killed your brother, Romulus. Did you really think that wouldn’t have consequences? You laid Rome’s foundations with unclean hands, tainted them with your brother’s blood, did you really think the gods wouldn’t punish you?”

    “SHUT UP!” Romulus Alter roars, trying to get clear or land a hit somehow, but Attila doesn’t let him retake the tempo. The King of the Huns fights mechanically, his every move calculated and perfected to dismantle his enemy, even as he keeps talking.

    “Rome was cursed, built on a foundation of fratricide. It was only a matter of time, really, until your house came crumbling down.”

    “YOU WILL-“

    Romulus Alter is, unfortunately, interrupted by Attila, in three smooth strokes of his sword, cutting off both his arms, and his head.

    “Now, that was just disappointing.”

    ---​

    I give Loki a look. “He’s not wrong.”

    “Look, get off my back, man! I told you, finding a nemesis for Attila was hard!”

    “So, how’s Jason v. Medea going?”

    He sighs, and the screens show the two, still bickering.

    “So is Cursed Arm-“

    Then… the unexpected happens.

    ---​

    “I can’t believe you! You were always like this!” Jason shouts. “Always nagging, always demanding that everything fits your picture-perfect fairy tale fantasies! Well, I’m sorry, princess, but in the real world…”

    He’s cut off by the Sword of Mars embedding itself in his sternum.

    “Witch! I’m just assuming he was one of our enemies. I need you to point me in the direction of his compatriots, and-“

    “I had him,” Medea snarls. “And I’m not going to just act as your logistical support the second you demand it, you treacherous brute! Now go and get yourself killed, and make the world a brighter…” she stares down at the sword embedded in her chest. “…place?”

    “I told you not to call me that,” Attila says calmly, as he pulls back his blade and decapitates her. “And, by the way? I was being polite before, but now I’m just going to come out and say it. You and your ex-husband are both terrible people and you deserve each other, if only to keep you from making the rest of us miserable.”

    ---​

    I stare at the screen in horror as my teacher dissolves.

    And then I say the only thing that comes to mind. “ATTILA, YOU TEAMKILLING-“
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2020
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