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OverMaster's Little Crummy Corner of Sub-Par Writing

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by OverMaster, Aug 27, 2018.

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  1. Threadmarks: Fate: Time and Punishment, Chapter Six, Omake Three
    OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Omake! Part Three!

    "It's good to see you're taking well to this era after all," Sakura said, sitting with the knights watching the BBC via cable. "You seem far less homesick than the first days around."

    "It's been the hardest on the King, actually," Galahad commented. "He feels he must be upholding the law and justice constantly. I just hope that, when we are sent back home, not too long has passed."

    "True, I would hate to see what the kingdom would come to, left on its own for any long, against Morgan and guided by Merlin and Kay," Gawain nodded.

    Agravain took a hand and lamented, "Would you just stop inviting disgrace already?!"

    "In any case, the King can cope," Gareth said, taking another mouthful of chips from the bag and discreetly edging closer to Lancelot. "He has a mechanism left, from whenever the role of a perfect King demanded for him to stand behind the red tape of technicalities."

    "Really?" Sakura asked. "And, um, where is she right now, anyway?"

    ---

    "C'mon, Neechan," one of the two punks surrounding the terrified girl in the alley chuckled, flashing his knife out. "I swear, you're gonna have fun too..."

    "N-N-No, don't touch me, please...!"

    "Awww, get offa the high horse!" the other delinquent told her. "Bitch, your mouth says no but your eyes say--"

    "Step back, vile evildoers!" a voice shouted from above in English.

    They looked up, and saw a figure standing grandiously on a nearby tall fence. She wore a fully zipped up black jacket, black tight shorts, and a blue baseball cap, a golden ahoge somehow poking out through it.

    "Nani kore...?!" the punks screamed, letting go of the girls and aiming their blades at this newcomer.

    "Punishing vice and corruption, the highway vigilante from yore has returned!" she proclaimed as the girl ran away. "A forgotten name from the past, justice for those the arm of Law cannot protect! Even if others would forgive you, I shall not!"

    "What the hell is this slut saying?!"

    She pulled out a sword, an actual Western sharp sword, and descended mightily upon the now screaming criminals.

    "Mysterious Heroine X!"
     
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  2. Threadmarks: Fate: Time and Punishment, Chapter Six, Epilogue
    OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    A burnt world.

    A world King Arthur and her comrades had thought dead and forgotten forever. And in a way, right they were.

    Even insects had died down by now, under the stench descending from contaminated skies. Plants everywhere, festering and perishing from the black pollution, were crumbling and dropping no matter where she went.

    Yet she still lived, she persevered, with the inhuman drive of something forsaken by Heaven and Hell alike. She had staggered all the way out of the city and into her old home.

    She didn't even look at her father's skeleton, covered by mere shredded rags, as she stumbled into the house. She dragged herself up the stairs, hissing gutturally to herself, ignoring the distant thunders, forgetting the blackened disc of the sun.

    "Take my Prince away, will you..."

    She slammed the door of the attic open, then clawed her way towards the corner. With animalistic fury, she swatted aside every lovingly crafted artifact of childlike whimsy, every savant invention, those shaped like swans and those disguised as graceful toys. Those only meant to amuse herself, and those intended to entertain an once beloved sister, all the same.

    "We won't forgive you, ever, ever, ever..."

    The dreamer, bereft the dream, comes to resent the waking hours. Facing the absurd, the mind drifts to the logic of the subconscious, the safety and warmth of familiar patterns. And failing them, lashing out becomes the sole option.

    "Here you are..."

    The girl's delicate hands found the device, held it high. Not with reverence, but with dark satisfaction regardless. An once ridiculous, even for her, item, something she had brought together on a whim, just to prove herself she could. She had given it a few tries then, just for fun. Changed a few things at Russia, handed an Emperor some notes, whispered into Columbus' ear, all to see what would be changed once she made it back, how delightful or dreadful her consequences would be. That had been the first rough wake up call, that of returning to the same old, same old, in a world devoid of the same magic she had briefly touched, that of adventure stories and thrilling, exotic romance.

    Disappointed, she had put the thing away and forgot about it, until she had another chance to seize her dreams, and took a Prince for herself. Now, heartbroken once more, all she was left with was the chance to escape again. She couldn't possibly change her world, now she realized that, to her crushing grief. But, she could make those responsible feel that very same grief, tenfold.

    And that, in its own way, was just as good, too.

    "No matter where you went, I'll make you pay..."

    Sajyou Manaka, sole survivor of the Fourth Fuyuki Heaven's Grail, gripped onto the modified toaster's surface, almost sinking her nails into it.

    "But first, I will need another Prince."




    To be Continued?
     
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  3. Threadmarks: Fate: Time and Punishment, Chapter Seven, Part One
    OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Fate/Stay Night, Fate EXTRA, Fate Extella, Fate Hollow Ataraxia, Fate Grand Order, Fate Zero, Fate Kaleid Prisma Illya, Fate Apocrypha, Fate Prototype, Fate Requiem, Fate Strange/Fake and Fate Type/Redline are the creation and intellectual properties of Type-Moon and Nasu Kinoko.




    "No... Please, don't!" Tohsaka Rin begged. "I can't take it anymore!"

    "Uuuu, fu fu fu fu...!" Wu Zetian giggled, cheeks flushed with excitement. "Too late, my dear! The game is mine, and there's nothing you can do about it...!"

    "No... No!" Rin took both hands to her head. "This is so unfair, what a fiendish torture!"

    "It is, isn't it?" the tiny woman enjoyed Rin's suffering, slamming her piece back on the board and claiming victory. "I just happen to be better than you could ever be, naturally! And you have seen nothing yet! Oh, how much I enjoy this Western game! Not as much as other pleasures, of course, but it is up there!"

    Presiding over the game of checkers by standing guard, arms folded, at the doorstep of the royal fun chamber, Li Shuwen sighed in a jaded way. "What is the point of any of this?"

    Wu frowned at him, extending a hand ahead and silently demanding for more of the strange currency this girl carried on her. "Oh, you can't understand any form of entertainment that doesn't involve punching others in the face!" she told her warrior while Rin ruefully paid the terms of their latest bet. This China was so whacked out of balance with proper history it wasn't like she could change anything meaningfully this way, she hoped. "I mean, that is fun too, every once in a while, but you also have to keep on trying new things!"

    Rin groaned. "Maybe we should go sleep already. I'm tired."

    "No, no, we insist, let us keep going!" Zetian said. "What can we bet this time, I wonder..." Her gaze went mischievously over all the torture implements in the room. "What if whoever loses gets to whip the other fifteen times? I won't renege if I lose!"

    "You won't lose, you're just much better at this stupid game!" Rin protested, hitting the board with both games. "Bring me a game of chess and I'll kick your butt!"

    "Oh, you want to up the stakes, yes, we do agree, mere cracks of the whip are thinking too small," Zetian ku-ku-ked, completely missing her point on full purpose. "Maybe I should coat those delicate little feet of yours with hot wax and pull the skin off, or-"

    "I definitely won't bet on those terms!" Rin protested.

    "Okay, then what if we make it a game of strip?" Wu suggested. "I'll even send Li out and everything. It's not like I couldn't subdue you easily..."

    Somehow, despite this little troll's laughable stature, Rin believed her. "Like... strip poker? Huh, no, thank you..."

    "You're no fun," Wu pouted. "What else do you have on you, that we could bet, then?"

    "W-Well, I don't know, let me see..." Rin tried to buy time until bedtime, rummaging through the pockets sewn into her robes. "Lighter, hunting knife, a Game Boy Mini? Why did Sakura put this here, she knows I don't like videogames! I'm sure I have some milk chocolate somewhere in here..."

    "What is that?" Wu pointed with curiosity at something Rin had also just pulled out without fully noticing. "I want it!"

    Rin blinked, looking at this thing. "What? Well, I'm sure we could-" She froze, staring at the remote control. "Oh! Oh, no, no, sorry, I can't bet on this one..."

    "Well, then I'll confiscate it and we'll bet on something else," Wu said, reaching for it. "I want it regardless!"

    "No!" Rin yelped, yanking it back and away from Wu, while Shuwen heaved a sigh and closed his eyes. "This isn't even mine!"

    Arrrrghhh, I'm such an idiot, I should have given this to Akuta before-! she thought. No, wait, SHE is the idiot for not thinking of it herself! I've got a damn good excuse, being stressed over being left with this psycho!

    "Of course it's not yours, it's mine!" Zetian wailed, stubbornly trying to grab the device even as Rin put a hand on her face and tried to shove her back. "What a disrespect to your Empress, I'll boil you aliv-!"

    Far, far away, past the valleys and mountains, Xuanzang, having dinner with Hinako's party in a small roadside bar during their second day of traveling together, issued an apologetic smile while rising from her chair. "I'm sorry, I believe I need visiting the monks' room for just a moment, please. You won't mind, right? I'll pay the bill as soon as I come back!"

    "Of course," Hinako nodded, sipping from her bowl of noodles and soup, and watching her depart quickly. "Don't fret, she's just heading for some brief private meditation," she told Musashi and Kojiro in Japanese then.

    "I'm starting to think you don't like addresing me for some reason," Perseus said. "And when do we have sex with the prostitute? I mean, since you went and hired her, the least we could do-"

    "She's a monk and she's our guide to the capital!" Hinako irritably replied in his language. "We should be there in two days at most, if we keep this pace. I suppose I should congratulate you on being remarkably mobile while-"

    "That's nice, so we just have to enther this man's palace and slay him, and then we are free to go, that is still the plan, isn't it?" he interrupted her. "Is the artifact to travel back still functional?"

    "Of course it is," Hinako said, taking a hand to her breast, "I have taken great care to keep it safe, by- by-"

    Her eyes widened slowly, and her face went ashen pale, "By leaving it with Rin..." she eeped in Chinese.

    Musashi took another gulp from her gourd of liquor, then asked her, "You're trying to recall what you did with the thingamabob, aren't you? I think you left it with Rin-chan."

    There was a brief, bright flash of light visible in the far distance, past the valleys and mountains, and Kojiro looked out through the window. "Was it ever that much bright before, I wonder?" he said calmly.

    Xuanzang returned, smiling kindly and setting several coins on the table. "Sorry I took so long! This should cover all expenses, I'm sure, I'll pay for the hotel as w- Miss Hinako? Why are you weeping to yourself?"




    Fate: Time and Punishment.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2020
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  4. Threadmarks: Fate: Time and Punishment, Chapter Seven, Part Two
    OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    "Hey, boy," Mordred said, entering the Dojo. "Can we talk?"

    Shirou pulled back from Kiritsugu, massaged the swollen right side of his face as the older man let go of him, and nodded. "Sure thing. Will it take long?"

    "Might." The ancient warrior then waved a gloved hand at Kiritsugu. "Leave, will you?"

    "Sure thing. This is not actually my house after all," the mercenary said indifferently, shoving his hands into his pockets and walking out.

    Mordred made sure of seeing him leaving, then asked Shirou, "Are you improving?"

    "A little. I think," the boy sighed, sitting down on the floor. "Do you need help with your homework as well? Sakura should be a better instructor than I."

    "I'm not going to anchor you down," Mordred said, taking the helmet off and tossing one of the wooden swords hanging from a wall his way. "We'll talk as I teach you a few things."

    "Uh, thank you, it's a honor," Shirou said, catching the sword in mid air. He looked at Mordred locking the door, then taking the rest of the armor off, and he gulped at how much skin was exposed by the bright scarlet garments under them. "Uh, you're worried about the King, aren't you..."

    "I'm always worried about the King," Mordred confirmed dryly, grabbing another of the practice swords and holding a ready stance before Shirou. "Now, the swords you use in this country don't fit our fighting style very well, but our ways and yours still share enough basics you should learn a few tricks from me, if you just pay some attention. You are too tense, for starters. I'm not going to kill you, idiot, and even if I were, stiffening wouldn't help you."

    "Ah. Sorry," he said, trying to relax. "Normally, I'm not like this, but-"

    "I know, I have to make you uneasy, right? The homunculus woman's Servant told me, of the infamy I left in history," she grunted, giving a first token swing and watching Shirou blocking. "Your arm must go in a wider arc for a better defense. I'm second only to Judas, and if we stay, they'll learn sooner than later."

    "But... you haven't decided to betray the King yet, have you?" Shirou asked, paying attention to the way she was moving, and noticing how she was holding back, despite all. "I mean, you don't have a reason to. You... You love her..."

    "Him."

    "Sorry, him," Shirou gulped, as the next blow was much stronger, almost shattering his boken. "What's the problem then? None of our stories ever said he was a... well, that he had that kind of body, so it stands to reason the rest of your legends have to be the same either. There's no reason why you should be a traitor if you don't want to!"

    "What kind of logic is that, what does one thing have to do with the other?!" Mordred growled, pushing him back further with her increasingly agressive swordplay. "You're the kind of person who thinks of everything in terms of gender! So as long as we have female bodies, anything goes for you, doesn't it?!"

    "I didn't say anything like that!" Shirou said, almost cornered by now, and wincing under her blows. "All I'm saying is, if stories from badly documented times don't match in some parts, they don't have to match in the rest either! You're sure you won't betray him, so why do you worry so much!"

    "Because I know, but I don't know if the others will know!" then she was surprised as she parried successfully and almost hit her. "Always aim for the middle of the mass! Not for the flanks! And you can't blame me for being on the edge, look up there, even this bastard refers to me as a woman!" she roared, pointing at the paragraphs above.

    Of course, biologically speaking she was a woman, and thus this impartial narrator of the omniscient variety feels like sticking to the strictly factual core of the matter.

    "Oooo, this no good fink! He could at least use the 'They'!"

    Take it to Mother Nature, sister. 'They' is for plural and I only see one of you.

    "Will you two stop doing that, it's creepy, and it'll get us in trouble!" Shirou requested, just before Mordred finally disarmed him. "Okay, that sucked, didn't it?"

    Mordred huffed, then shook her head reluctantly. "No, for a novice you're good. You'd make for a good foot soldier, but if you want to be an actual Hero you'll need a lot more. Now, I mostly fight from the guy and I'm not good with fancy explanations. Gawain might be a better teacher, technically speaking. But I'll help you as much as I can if you can help me in turn."

    Shirou frowned. "I don't need a reward to try and help others."

    Mordred paused. "... neither do I, actually. I know you might think otherwise, since I'm apparently the kind who would burn a kingdom just because they weren't found fit for the throne, but-!"

    "No, no, I think I understand," Shirou exhaled wearily. "This isn't about the throne itself, is it? This is about being recognized as the King's son."

    Mordred took another awkward pause, then looked aside. "Yes. Which is, sadly enough, precisely the reason why I cannot introduce myself to him as such. Not only I'm also the child of a monstrous union with a fiend of a mother, but I have hid this from him all this whole time, and now, should he learn of the rest... he'd have every reason to believe I'm truly another felon, just biding for his time."

    "It's not an easy matter to sort out," Shirou admitted.

    "Tell me about it!"

    "Let me think about it for a while, okay?" Shirou asked after a moment. "I'm sure we can come up with a solution if we really put our minds into it. I know I'm not that smart, but..."

    "Odds are you are smarter than me regardless," she said bitterly. "I'm just the brute with the wicked blade. I'm not a thinker like Agravain, a schemer like Palamedes, not even a savant like Bedivere. I'm smarter than Kay, okay, but who isn't?"

    "No, don't be so hard on yourself. For what it counts, I think you are a cool guy," Shirou told him.

    "Thank you." She pointed up again, angrily. "Now if only that stubborn moron would think like that, too!"

    Yeah, well, sorry, but you still have a vagina.

    "Narrow minded buffoon!"
     
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  5. Threadmarks: Fate: Time and Punishment, Chapter Seven, Interlude
    OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    "I am Zhu Bajie!" roared the humongous black beast blocking the mountain pass. "I will kill you all now! Unless you give me all your money and women!"

    Hinako sneered with cold despise. "What a foul creature..."

    "Something's wrong here," Musashi said, drawing her katana out. "I can't put my finger on exactly what, but..."

    Sanzang stepped ahead, closing her eyes and bringing her hands into a praying position. "The Buddha compels you to let us pass!" she told the towering, four armed demonic creature in the silver armor. "So you'd better be a nice guy and do as he says, because this pilgrimage is important! Please?"

    "NOOOOOOOOOO!" he howled on her face.

    "KYAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"

    Kojiro and Perseus shared a bland look, then each held a hand behind his back, counted to three, and then swiftly pulled them back.

    "Ttέτρα!" Perseus said.

    "Ronbun!" Kojiro said.

    "Sκατά!" Perseus cursed.

    Kojiro smiled, swinging his sword over his shoulder and walking past the others, including a Xuanzang clinging to the annoyed Hinako's side. "Good thing this game is universal. I wonder why the United Nations of the future don't just resort to it for everything...?"

    "Sasaki-san," Hinako flatly told him. "Just in case, try not to kill him. He may be necessary for the course of this timeline, deformed as it is."

    "I will kill whoever I want, woman. Now you don't even hold the device to bargain for my obedience," the man said, not with spite or real arrogance but more with the unemotional statement of a fact. "Have at thee them, devil! You may make the first strike!"

    Zhu Bajie blinked, interrupting his fierce growling. "Wh-What? What are you saying? You aren't delivering the girls? Ah, hah, hah, you... you obviously are insane..."

    "Aren't you a devil?" Kojiro demanded. "What manner of devil doesn't understand the heart of man? I bore of this."

    "Ah? S-Speak slower, you surely can't expect to kill me with that little... sharp... thing..." the monster grimaced. "Besides, you- AAAAIIIEEEE!" he cried out as Kojiro rushed ahead faster than he could react, and stabbed him in the gut.

    Well, that was fast and disappointing, wasn't it.
     
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  6. Threadmarks: Fate: Time and Punishment, Chapter Seven, Part Three
    OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    "There is something I need to tell you," Mordred said. She was well aware that she was starting this conversation in what had to be one of the worst possible ways.

    "Then speak," her father said as evenly as ever, sitting across the table opposite her, and absently polishing her fabled sword with a cloth.

    For a moment Mordred considered her father, Arthur Pendragon, King of the Bretons. The Once and Future King, the Lion of Camelot. Looking to serve him faithfully, Mordred had abandoned her mother's cause, and yet now she had learned she was fated to betray his trust, ruin his kingdom and all they cared for, and besides—

    "I am waiting for that question," Artoria said, still polishing the blade.

    "Oh, yes, of course, I apologize," the armored helmet hewed into a heavy fist. "I was just trying to look for the correct way to approach this topic."

    "That you would put great care in your ways to address me only shows your pedigree as a thoughtful knight," her lord and father said, still not looking at her. "Don't ever apologize for displaying such qualities."

    "Ah… thank you!" Mordred beamed inwardly at the praise, which only made what she was about to say next all the more difficult to say. "I just wanted to know, what would His Highness think of one of his knights, should this knight prove to be, um, later in life, should he learn that he actually is—"

    The sentence was not finished, and thus now Artoria quietly glared at her, an eyebrow slightly raised. "Yes?"

    "—gay!" Mordred eeped then, completely unable to finish her originally intended train of thought, and just latching onto the first next thing to come to mind.

    Wait, why she'd thought of that?! GAY?! What did that have to do with anything?!

    Well, come to think about it, he, or she, whatever would HAVE TO be gay, should they ever display interest on anyone, right? Identifying oneself as a man, yet having the body of a woman, one would have to be either asexual or gay, no matter one's choice, that was just plain common sen—

    And then Artoria shrugged her shoulders and went back to polishing Excalibur. "I fail to see why should I care."

    "Eh?!"

    "The measure of a knight does not come from their sexuality, preferences, or whatever they chose doing under covers, Mordred. As long as it's not done with unconsenting partners, farm animals, or the French. But the true measure of a warrior comes from their courage and loyalty."

    "Ah hah hah, their… loyalty… of course."

    "And you have more than enough of both," Artoria said, Mordred now being unable to enjoy THIS praise. "I won't mind if Gareth, Galahad and Bedivere are women, I won't mind if Percival refuses to learn how to read and write, I won't mind if Palamedes is a foreigner, so I won't mind if you choose loving Shirou either."

    "Ah, thank you, you are always so underst—Shirou?! What does he have to do with any of this?!"

    "You have been somewhat uneasy around him since he saw you in the bath. I had assumed…"

    "You had?!" Mordred gasped. Now this was bad! The King couldn't be wrong, and you certainly couldn't tell him he was wrong, so what was she supposed to do now?!

    "As I said, there is no shame on it. All I can tell you is, be mindful of Galahad's feelings," the King lectured wisely, holding a finger up. "I also can tell she is starting to feel an interest of her own. Please do compete fair and chivalrously."

    "What."

    A few minutes later, Galahad was passing by the King's quarters, ready to go take a bath, when she saw Sir Mordred exiting the room, his agitation and befuddlement evident even through the concealing helmet.

    "Ah… Sire?" she stopped by, regarding him with honest concern. "Does something trouble you? May I be of help?"

    "Apparently we are rivals now," Mordred said in a haunted tone.

    "Eh?"
     
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  7. OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Mightier than the Excalibur.

    "What are you doing?" Artoria asked, looking over his shoulder.

    Shirou sighed, tapping on the paper with his pen. "I'm writing a book. I've decided that, if I'm going to be a Hero of Justice, just going out and hitting people with swords won't suffice. I want Dad's ideals to live on, and I need spreading them for the generations to come. So they can make their own minds up about the nature of Justice."

    She stared at the blank page. "You haven't written anything yet."

    "No, no, I wrote the first five chapters of fifteen already, but now I'm stuck. I mean, I know where I want to go, and what I want to do, but suddenly I lost step of how to do it, and it's really frustrating..."

    "I'm sure it is," Artoria said, pausing to throw a discreet glance my way. It was over as soon as she was telling Shirou, "This book of yours, it is a manifesto of sociopolitical intentions, isn't it? Do you have a title for it yet?"

    "Actually--"

    "A good, solid title is the most important part of a book," she lectured. "It is what will hook your readers and pull them into your concepts. Work from your title, and everything should flow from it naturally."

    "Have you ever written a book?"

    "I once planned writing one," she reminisced. "It was to be an exploration of my ideals as a leader, a declaration of principles for the eras, my big legacy for posterity..."

    "And what was going to be the title?"

    "My Fight."

    "..." Shirou said.

    "What?" Artoria asked. "Has it been used already?"
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2020
  8. OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Clipshow Episode.

    Mephisto nodded. "How about another joke, BB? What do you get when you cross a mentally ill loner with a Moon Cell that abandons him and treats him like trash?"

    "You aren't actually mentally ill, though," she pointed out.

    "Not the point!" he said, pulling out a ridiculously small handgun with a ridiculously large barrel. "You get what you fucking deserve!"

    And he shot her through the head while Kiara shrieked and ran for cover.

    ---

    "-- so, if I had to pick just one I'd say that's the worst show I've ever had to do," BB said, pulling some of her hair up and sticking a finger into the hole on her scalp. "Does that answer your question, Master?"

    "... I guess it does," Ritsuka meekly said.
     
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  9. OverMaster

    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Servants who Never Should be Summoned.

    ---

    Assassin.

    He chuckled perversely. "Ah, so I live again! Perfect, perfect. I'm Servant Assassin, the man able to avoid any detection. For there is no greater power than that of--"

    The old, decrepit, senile magus stared down at his summoning circle. "Ahhhhh, it failed after all. But I really thought it would work...!"

    "No, no, I'm right here!" his Servant said. "It's just you can't see me, because I am--"

    He threw his wrinkled, bony hands around, desperately. "My one chance to reach the Root, squandered! All these years of studies, wasted! Why to live, indeed...!"

    "PAY ATTENTION!" Assassin yelled at him. "Your summon worked perfectly, fool! I will win this Grail War without nobody being the wiser!"

    The old man began to sob to himself. "They'll laugh at me at the academy! There were right, weren't they? Their mockery will chase me to my grave!"

    "I'M TELLING YOU I'M RIGHT HERE!" the Servant screamed into his ear. "My name is Hawley Griffin! Are you fucking deaf, damn you?!"

    "I can hear them clearly already, calling me a damned deaf fool...!" the Master lamented.

    "Oh, for the love of--!"

    It took Assassin two full days to get the also extremely myopic man to read a note he'd written for him and make him realize he actually had summoned him after all. Then it only took him a single day to get himself raped and killed by Mr. Hyde again, because some things never change.

    The old magus, unaware he didn't have a Servant anymore, still defeated the rest of the Servants on his own and claimed the Grail thanks to assorted hilarious Mr. Magoo-esque hijinks.

    The Grail never got to cash on his wish and flood the world in darkness, however, since he just kept wishing things on his teapot instead to the day of his death.
     
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    Christmas 2020.

    The morning of December the 25th, all over the world, children bawled.

    Jolly Old Saint Nicholas shrugged his shoulders while reading a good book. "What?" he asked his wife. "This year, I had to stay at home, like everyone else!"
     
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    Help is on the Way.

    "Good evening, how may we help you?"

    "Ah, good evening. My name is Itoshiki Nozomu. Is this the Suicide Help Hotline?"

    "Yes, Itoshiki-san. Please tell us about your case, and we will send any sort of necessary help your way."

    "Thank you. I have to assume you would have the best specialists in Japan."

    "Naturally, sir. Our experts are the top graduates in the area."

    "That's good to know. I place a very high value on education, being a schoolteacher myself."

    "Yes, plenty of those contacting us work at the field of teaching. You are free to tell us of anything affecting you, we have a vow of confidentiality. The conversation is being recorded strictly for possible future therapeutical issues."

    "Therapy? Oh, no, I don't need any therapy. I just need a technician sent to my home."

    "A... technician? We don't call them that way, Sensei, they are doctors."

    "I see. So they apply injections, then?"

    "Only in the event you are diagnosed and reciped for such purposes. Medication is an alternative to be explored only once--"

    "Medication? I was talking about toxins."

    "... I beg your pardon?"

    "Yes, you know, I have resorted to all manners of poisons, yet always failed, so I figured out I might as well resort to experts. How big is your success rate?"

    "Our... success rate at what?"

    "Why, at successful assisted suicides, naturally. I won't mind the exact means much, as long as not much of a mess is made. I like to think I can endure physical pain remarkably well, as long as it's not prolonged. But of course, surely you will use sedation of the highest quality, sorry if I have--"

    "S-Sensei! We don't HELP people kill themselves! We help them NOT kill themselves!"

    "... then why do you call it a 'Suicide Help Hotline'?"

    "... because we help people not to commit suicide, naturally, that's something everyone--"

    "Then you should call it the Anti Suicide Help Hotline! I have just wasted precious, valuable time I could have used immolating myself! I'M IN DESPAIR! A CARELESS SOCIETY THAT MISLABELS IMPORTANT SOURCES OF SOCIAL HELP HAS LEFT ME IN DESPAIR!"

    "...!"

    "... anyway. Sorry for taking some of your time too, and please have a good night."

    *Click*

    I hung the line and took both hands to my head.

    "Mariko-chan?" asked Kotono from the next booth. "What's wrong? Another one killed himself over the line?"

    "... this time? I wish!"
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    An Advantage.

    Alter Santa Lily Jeanne took a break between chewings. "These aren't stolen cookies, are they, Jack?"

    Jack shook her head, still stuffing her mouth. "No."

    "If they were," Nursery Rhyme observed, "someone would have noticed and scolded her already, right?"

    "I'm just saying," Jeanne said, "that, for the Assassin with both Presence Concealment and Information Erasure among us, it wouldn't be hard to--"

    "Jeanne!" Kama gasped softly. "For you to be doubting the word of Jackie, our own longtime loyal friend, just because of your moral qualms...!"

    "I, I didn't mean to imply anything bad!" Jeanne panicked. "It's just that sometimes we do bad things without meaning to!"

    "Don't worry," Bunyan smiled with a full mouth leaking crumbs. "They aren't stolen. Kama just seduced the kitchen staff while Archer-mama, Boudica-mama, Cat and Birdie were away."

    Jeanne stared at Kama.

    "It doesn't count as theft as long as you aren't swiping them yourself, right?" the small goddess asked blandly.

    Jeanne took a hand to her own face and began whispering something to herself.
     
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    A Kingdom all my Own.

    "You will see, Father!" the armored, horned knight in white shook a gauntlet's fist at the castle in the distance. "I'll show you yet! I'll make my own kingdom! With blackjack, and hookers! Actually, forget the kingdom!"

    ---

    "And... why didn't you just do that?" Sisigou Kairi asked. "You'd have spared everyone a whole world of trouble!"

    Mordred groaned, taking both hands to her head. "Turned out, I just couldn't get along with hookers! They are scary people, man, trying to take your helmet off and kiss you! No wonder Father had Castle Anthrax burned down to the ground...!"
     
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    Every Single Last Evil.

    The villagers took him, bound and battered, to the central square, and began marking his flesh on red and black.

    They spewed every curse on him, as if to spend them forever from their mouths. By purging themselves on this miserable being, they would purify those urges from their souls.

    They punted him and hit him with rocks, to make sure Evil would be weakened when they buried It, and It would not break free to the surface. This, too, was logical and sound. No caution could be forgotten when dealing with Evil, after all. For virtue to triumph it must be comprehensive and vigilant of every detail, and the townsfolk kept that in mind the whole time.

    The unwanted, the pariah, was allowed to shout his curses, so everyone would see him for what he truly was, for what he had been transfigured into by his own actions as much as by theirs. In truth, he had been a man like any other, with his vices and commendable traits, yet this, too, was part of the necessary course of action, for the Root of All Evil had to start an average man, even if one nobody would miss. Evil can, the wise men stated, spawn from any heart, and to embody the victory of good over perversity, the latter had to be a personification of that dilemma. This was not overlooked either.

    Otherwise, they paid no attention to his blasphemies, for they'd be reduced to nothing by his banishment. And so they buried him alive, in a box within another box, as deep as they could dig, and then covered on rocks which were blessed by the priests. Only then, the villagers smiled, feeling the satisfaction of a fulfilled moral duty.

    From that point, Evil would plague Man no more. They raised their hands and began chanting, but then stopped in horror, a chilling realization sinking in under the dying sun of the dusk.

    Their hands were all now covered, forever, in red and black.
     
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    But Not That Way!

    "Mash, now!" Fujimaru Ritsuka grinned as a horde of skeletons broke from the ground, all beginning to shamble towards them threateningly. "The way I told you!"

    The short haired girl in skimpy black armor glanced back. "But, Sempai...!"

    "C'mon, do it for me!" the redhead brought her hands together.

    The Servant sighed and threw her massive black shield, squashing several of the skeletons under it, while Ritsuka sang happily, "When Captain Britain throws her mighty shield..."

    She sighed irritably, running over to retrieve her sole means of fighting, then tossing it on more of the undead troops, shattering them to splintered bone. "All those who oppose her shield must yield!" her Master kept on singing, delighted.

    Once again, the curvaceous warrior had to pick the shield up, kicking two skeleton soldiers lunging at her away while hefting it, and then using both hands to sling it like a frisbee, splitting even more of the undead by half. Ritsuka took a fist to her own chest and crooned, "Then the black and the gray and the brown underside will come through..."

    "The things I do for love..." Shielder grunted between gritted teeth, raising the huge darned thing once again and doing another throw that smashed the last few of the magically reanimated enemies while Ritsuka held a fist high and finished.

    "When Captain Britain throws her mighty shield!"

    Now that all of their foes were vanquished, Shielder turned back and said, "First! I'm telling you, this isn't its proper use! Second! I'm sure we're risking to lawsuit twice, both because of the lyrics and because there's already someone called 'Captain Britain'! And third! The rewriting of the third verse throws the whole song off!"
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Little Sister.

    "Rin-chan?" the man asks from her bedroom's doorstep. "Come here, please."

    Her little sister is different when Eishun-sama brings her over, and it takes Rin a few moments to realize that is, indeed, her. Sakura doesn't talk, and only stares ahead fixedly. Her eyes are now violet, much like her hair, and they seem even bigger and rounder than before.

    "She won't be living with the Matous anymore," Kirei explains dutifully, still covered on bandages and bruises. Arms folded behind his broad back, he expands on, "Don't worry about the details. The Mahora Headmaster will handle your living arrangements."

    Rin is happy, but still, she remembers Father's words on the subject, so she glances back at her mother even as she steps ahead to gently hug Sakura. "Is that okay with you, Mother?"

    "Ah," Tohsaka Aoi says from her wheelchair at the corner, eyes as hollow as Sakura's, and barely more lively than Kirei's. Rin turns her gaze at the other person in the room who actually seems alive, and Konoe Eishun only can smile benevolently, with a small shrug of shoulders.

    The bespectacled man places a hand on her small shoulder. "You are a strong girl, Rin-chan. You are a good sister and daughter, too. Should you ever need help, call us."

    "Of course, I will always be here, Rin," Kirei stoically promises, and Rin can only give a token nod as she feels how cold and numb Sakura is in her arms.

    In response, Rin only hugs tighter.
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Karloff Not Be Proud!

    "You stay here, Maria," her father told her, stopping chopping wood and walking back towards their woods. "I'll just have a look at my traps. Then we'll go to the village and have a grand time, okay?"

    "You won't be long, Daddy?" asked the adorable little blonde girl in the long dress.

    "Oh, no, no," the mustachioed man reassured her. "If Franz comes by, tell him I'll be back soon."

    "Daddy, won't you play with me a little while?"

    "I'm too busy, Darling," he said. "You stay and play with the kitty, huh?"

    "Bye, Daddy!" she waved at him.

    "Goodbye! You be a good girl, now!" he waved back.

    "Come on, Kitty!" she said then, merrily skipping towards the blue lake, her cat following her.

    There, Maria saw a strange lady standing by the water, looking into the distance. She was oddly attractive, with short red hair falling in bangs over her eyes, and wearing elaborate bridal attire, besides being holding a gigantic mace ever sparkling with electricity. For some reason the golden tiara on her forehead had a long sharp spike jutting up the front, having her appear to have a horn on her head.

    "Who are you?" Maria asked her, and the lady looked at her. "I'm Maria. Will you play with me?"

    ---

    Caules Forvedge Yggdmillennia lifted his eyes from the book he had been reading as his Servant walked back into his living quarters.

    "Oh, welcome back, Berserker," the young man with glasses and short brown hair sounded worried. "Were... Were you attacked by the other faction? Why didn't you call for help?"

    "Uuuuuuuu," Berserker said, her dress and body all soaked wet from head to toe, her mace producing more sparks than ever, and claw marks running all over her face.

    (Translation: "Children around here sure are mean...!")
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2020
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    If Only...

    "I've been thinking, isn't it funny, Sempai?" Konoe Konoka asks, with a bright and innocent smile, while they are both cooking for the others. "We could have been sisters!"

    "... sisters?" Sakura asks the black haired younger girl. In truth, they've never been close, and they only know each other through Negi-sensei.

    "Yeah, think about it!" Konoka sighs, still smiling, and stirring the large pot of soup. "If only Dad hadn't been so busy with his duties at the Kansai Association, he'd have adopted you, and you'd be my Oneesama!"

    For a moment, Sakura's eyes become oddly distant and vacant at the idea.

    ---

    "Why are you so antsy today?" Rin mutters in the darkness, trying to cuddle against Sakura's back. Stubbornly, the younger and bustier woman just keeps facing the bedroom's wall. Aren't the the things bothering her tonight? "Did I do anything bad over dinner? I behaved well, I tried not to argue with Negi-kun that much...!"

    Sakura chews on her knuckles. "I never get to be the Oneesama..."

    Somewhere else in the Mahora campus, Sakurazaki Setsuna feels strangely thankful, to someone, over something.
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    The Truth About the Taiga Dojo.

    "Fuji-nee?" Shirou asked, entering the Dojo. "What are you doing with that camera, and why is Illya in a PE uniform?"

    The short haired woman in the kendo hakama coughed into a fist, the other hand tapping her boken against the floor as a mortified Illya tried to cover her milky white legs' bareness with her hands. "Shirou, I assure you, this is all completely legal! We only happen to be talking about your death."

    Shirou blinked. "Okay!" he said, and then began walking back very quickly.
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Fate Route Ending, Deleted Scene.

    "-- I have something I need to confess, Sakura-san," Illya said meekly.

    Sakura blinked, a bit taken back at her contrite expression. "What is it, Illya-chan?"

    "It's about your brother, Shinji."

    "What... What about him? I don't think you ever met Oniisama..."

    "No. No, I did. For a very short while, but I did," Illya said, lowering her head. "I'm afraid you'll hate me after this, Sakura-san, I've grown to love you like a sister, but... I might be gone soon, and before I go, I need to tell you, you deserve to know..."

    "Knowing what, Illya-chan? Do you know what happened to Oniisama?"

    "Yes," Illya said sadly. "I... I am a magus, Sakura-san, just like he was, well, much better actually, but the point is, I used to have this Heroic Servant from the distant past, Heracles, Prince of Power, at my beck and call, and I made him kill your brother...! Sorry..." she shrunk on herself with soft whimper and a sob.

    Sakura took on that, sitting very straight and silent.

    "You hate me now, don't you, I knew it!" Illya cried, taking both hands to her head. "Kill me if you want to, but please don't hold anything against Shirou-niichan, he never--!"

    Sakura held a hand up.

    "Eh?" Illya blinked, trembling.

    "High five," Sakura said, very stiff and distant.

    Hesitating, Illya slowly brought her hand to Sakura's, and timidly slapped her palm against hers.

    And Sakura shouted. "Ohhhh, yessss! Yes, yes, yes, yes! He won't be coming back after all...!"

    And after a moment, she smiled sweetly at Illya. "Would you like to meet my grandfather now?"

    "I should warn you, I don't have Heracles with me anymore..."
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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  23. OverMaster

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    After thinking about it for a relatively long while, I think I'm going stop writing Fate until more canon lore and characters are added, that is, until GO, Prisma, S/F and Requiem actually start advancing again instead of slowly chugging along with filler and mere variant Servants every so many months (GO), get the fuck out of the Namek/Hueco Mundo already (Prillya) and start moving at all, period (Strange/Fake). Or until Extella 2 comes out, whenever/if that happens.

    I don't know. Lack of actual novelty is kinda stalling me. I don't want to step on my own toes while marching ahead, and I don't want to second guess the canon twists ahead of time. So I'll have to wait. I'm frustrated.

    I know it may take several months, if covid doesn't get me or the canon writers first. In the meanwhile... I suppose I should write for something else, but I've been so focused on Fate of late for a while now, I'm kind of rusty on how to focus on other things.
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    So, Why Him?

    "I don't know, I just was wondering..." Della shrugged and waved a hand around, now that the dust had settled and everyone had gone back home. "How long has it been, since the last time you even spoke with him? Did you make up with him after I left?"

    "Sort of," Donald grumbled. "I mean, it's more like he made up with me and I didn't. I never wanted to!"

    "Ah," his sister nodded, "but that's the way your friendship always was anyway. Even so, I wouldn't have thought you'd ever choose him, of all people, as the guy you'd want with you if you ever got stuck in a desert island."

    "It was a watermelon, okay?! His head is easy enough to carve on watermelons, Goofy's isn't!"

    She punched him in the arm. "C'mon, Don, you could carve Goofy's or Panchito's head out of a stone with your teeth if you really wanted to, and you're a duck! That can't be all there is to it. Why him?"

    He huffed. "Look, let's put it this way. I had to stick to a hope of ever leaving, right? It wasn't about whom I'd rather be with, but who would give me the best chance of ever leaving. That never could be the case with Goofy or Fethry, it'd still be a longshot with Panchito and Jose, and Gladstone would just find a way to escape on his own while leaving me behind! But of everyone I've ever known, even over Unca, Mickey is the one guy I'd ever believe would always have one hundred percent changes of escaping a desert island, no matter what! Somehow! There, happy now?!"

    She smiled and patted him on the head. "That wasn't so difficult to say, was it? Wait, what about Sora?"

    "He could do it too, but it'd take us ten years of traveling across the universe while he never ages any...!"
     
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    The Secret Origin of the Unequally Rational and Emotional Scouters.

    "Here!" Chibi Lala smiled, holding the small strange artifact up. "I made these for your army!"

    Chibi Frieza frowned at it. "What is it for?"

    "It tells you anyone's fighting power, see?" Chibi Lala said, pointing it at herself, and showing him a sequence of numbers on the lens screen. Then she repeated the proccess on him and smiled. "Waiiiiii! Frieza, you're so strong...!"

    He smiled smugly. "Naturally! I'm the strongest of all, so why do I need that thing? It's not going to tell me anyone's stronger than me, and everyone's so much weaker than me, what's the point on knowing exactly how much?"

    "Well," she reasoned, "your men are weak so they'll still need them, though."

    He thought about it, rubbing his chin, and then smiled. "Okay, I don't think they really do, but I'll order a batch just because we're friends! How many thousands can you have prepared by this weekend?"

    "Let's see, it'll depend on how many slave factories Daddy can lend..."

    ---

    "... don't react that way," Frieza scowled at the assembled, stunned Ala Alba sitting around the dining table. "Lalachi's the only reason why I won't destroy your pitiful planet, so I won't have you thinking anything bad about our beautiful friendship!"

    Lala giggled, pouring him more tea. "Oh, you say the funniest things! Did I mention Run-chan's studying here too? Why don't we go visit her now? She always made the funniest sounds whenever she saw you...!"
     
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    What If...?

    "Oh, Sensei, back home at last?" Chisame asked without looking up from the computer. "Took you long enough, what did delay you?"

    "Well, you'll see," Negi sighed while hanging his jacket by the door, "I was coming back from the teachers' meeting, and doubling around a corner, you could say that I found... a poor soul in need I had to bring along..."

    "Hrrrm, all stray cats are to be given to Chachamaru, I don't like having those things around," Chisame frowned. "We aren't supposed to be keeping pets without a special license anyway, the Headmaster makes an exception for yours because he talks..."

    "That won't be a problem, I can speak as well," said the woman in the purple robes and hood standing by Negi.

    Chisame stiffened in place.

    Satomi stared at the newcomer. "Well, I think Chachamaru would take her in regardless, but I can't speak for Eva-san..."
     
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    Servants who Never Should be Summoned.

    Archer.

    Beast VII smiled, or made something like a smile, at the last Servant standing. She could allow for it, she had triumphed after all, of which there never had been any doubt.

    "And who are you, to stand before me when all others have fallen? An Archer, is that right? What is the manner of your bow? I will allow you to make an attempt before obliterating you."

    "I don't shoot with bow or gun," the man said, grimly undoing the lower half of his robes and pulling something out. Beast VII made a sound as this something was aimed to her face, and a vigorous motion was initiated. "For my name is ONAN...!"

    The sound became a girlish shriek of defeat as this thing shot forward.

    In hindsight, it had been a bad choice for the Beast, that of selecting a virginal, innocent young lady as a host body.
     
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    What is Yu Doing in the Stay Night Timeline?

    The door opened, and out peeked a frowning face behind glasses.

    Shirou smiled, holding the large bag up. "Good evening, Ma'am! Your delivery from the Copenhagen, just as--"

    Akuta Hinako sneered, snatched the bag at the same time as she pushed several crumpled bills in his hand, and then slammed the door on his face.

    Shirou sighed, turned around, and began walking away.

    Poor woman. Apparently she never did anything but sitting alone in her apartment ordering strong drink? What had she ever lost to end up that way?

    If only she had something to give her some purpose.
     
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    But, is Being in Space Jam 2 an Achievement?

    "I heard he's going to be in Space Jam 2," Bruce Wayne said despondently, sitting in the Batcave with his cowl down.

    Alfred approached him. "I beg your pardon, Sir?"

    Bruce sighed. "I wasn't called for Space Jam 2. First he gets his own movie without me..."

    "Child You was in that movie, Master Bruce."

    "Not the same! Next he gets to be Mortal Kombat 11, I wasn't even considered there..."

    "You don't kill, Sir."

    "But, but Mortal Kombat versus the DC Universe! There's precedent!"

    "Everyone hated that game, Master Bruce!"

    "It didn't hurt his chances for a comeback! And now he even gets to be in Space Jam 2! I, I mean, even Scarecrow just got to be in a Scooby Doo movie and nobody invited me there either!"

    He put his face in his mighty hands and sobbed. "Eighty years, Alfred! It's been eighty years of them depending on me, and suddenly, they don't need me anymore...!"

    "Look at it this way, Master Bruce. Miss Quinn's movie tanked..."
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2020
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    OverMaster Send me money. I need money

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    Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon is the creation and intellectual property of Takeuchi Naoko and Shueisha.

    Mahou Sensei Negima! is the creation and intellectual property of Akamatsu Ken and Kodansha.

    Batman and all related elements are the intellectual property of DC Comics.

    Mai HiME is the creation and intellectual property of Sunrise.

    Ai Yori Aoshi is the creation and intellectual property of Fumizuki Kou and Hakusensha.

    Shin Seiki Evangelion is the creation and intellectual property of Anno Hideaki and Gainax/Studio Kharas.




    Unequally Rational and Emotional: Promise of the Rose.




    Tsukino Usagi could live with the knowledge she had a daughter in the faraway future. That was... sort of cool, as a matter of fact.

    She also could tolerate with that kid being a bit of a mouthy brat. That was the way all kids but Negi-sensei were after all, right? Usagi's brother was much worse, so in comparison Chibi-Usa was even somewhat likable when you got to know her. Hopefully, Future Usagi would eventually mold her into an alright woman.

    Hell, even the fact said daughter was also the fruit of artificial insemination by the boyfriend (and future husband) of one of Usagi's best friends was something Usagi had eventually made her peace with. Sure, she still was a bit pissed off at far future technology over not being advanced enough as to make her a daughter by Rei-chan, but... no point of crying over milk yet to be spilled, right? No, wait, that didn't sound right.

    Anywayyyyyy... in any case, Usagi had come to accept Chibi-Usa for what she was, and even though she wouldn't admit it, she even cared deeply about the little pink spore, except because, well...

    Did she really have to be that clingy about her own future father?! Jesus, that was disturbing!

    "Mamo-chaaaaaan, don't space out like that!" Tsukino Usagi Redux said, tugging on the black haired young man's sleeve. "You aren't finding this boring, are you?!"

    Chiba Mamoru blinked himself back to full awareness, as the girls gathered around him also snapped from their shared boredom to look at him. Only Pamela Isley kept on both distracted from him and fascinated by the flower displays in front of them, softly cooing at the gorgeous floral arrangements in their complete majesty, and occassionally reaching over to caress them despite all the signs telling her not to.

    "Ah? Sorry, Chibi-chan, I guess.. I didn't sleep all that well last night," the college student said, briefly rubbing himself on the bridge of the nose. "As long as you enjoy this, so will I, of course."

    "Yes!" Chibi-Usa beamed a beautiful smile, retaking her position by Isley as Shiho, Minako and Harley all groaned. "See these? They are forget-me-nots, symbols of true, everlasting love! The gardens back at home are full of them!"

    "Then haven't you looked at them enough times by now?" Harleen Quinzel complained, holding her cellphone up and rotating it around to take footage of all the displays around.
    "C'mon, let's just go hit the pizza place already! You can watch the recording all night long tonite if you want to!"

    Chibi-Usa and Ivy shared an annoyed glance. "Philistines," the little girl said.

    "Definitely," the shapely red haired woman agreed. "Everyone knows no tour of Ohtori is complete with a full lenght leisure visit to the Botanic Garden."

    Miyuki Mayu frowned and tapped her foot on the floor. "We've been here for over a hour already! It was pleasant at first, but I was told we'd visit the concert hall before closing time as well!"

    Chibi-Usa hugged Mamoru's arm tighter. "Well, nobody's stopping you from leaving! Pammy, Mamo-chan and I will just stay and that'll be the best for everyone involved, right, Mamo-chan?!"

    "Well, uh, I don't think it'd be fair for everyone else, Chibi-chan..." he tried to put it as delicately as possible.

    Aino Minako clenched a forced smile. "Mamo-chan's right, Chibi-chan, you don't want to be a selfish little princess now, do you? Your mommies and your dear auntie Venus would be so disappointed on you... Also, hand this back, will you," she added, suddenly grabbing a sighing Mamoru by the other arm and yanking him to her.

    "Well, you obviously aren't enjoying being here, so you aren't enjoying being with Mamo-chan like I am!" Chibi-Usa said, pulling back from her own side and staring daggers at Minako. "Mom, Gothy-chan, back me up here! True love's all about being willing to be with someone even in places where you don't want to be, right?!"

    Tomoe Hotaru nodded very quickly, large purple eyes very fixed on Chibi-Usa. "Yes. Yes, it is, Chibi-Usa-chan!"

    "Chibi, stop abusing Hotaru-chan like that," Usagi moaned. "You know she's finding this as much of a drag as the rest of us, and love's also about not testing the tolerance of your loved ones just so you can get things your way."

    "Wow, that's actually rather insightful and deep for you, Usagi," Shiho blinked.

    "I, I'm not!" Hotaru lied. "I could be here for hours and hours finding it an enriching life experience...!"

    "See, she said it herself!" Chibi-Usa told Usagi and Minako while pointing at Hotaru. "The four of us stay then, the rest of you can go anywhere else! I think it's time for me to cut the umbilical cord already, Mom!"

    "That's not what you say when you want me to wash your clothes for you, missy!" Usagi challenged back.

    "That's the least you can do for an illustrious houseguest!"

    "It's more like washing her own clothes is the least a guest could do for the hostess feeding her!" Minako cut in. "I can't believe you're being this selfcentered in front of Mamo-chan, he- Mamo-chan?!" she blinked, realizing she had her arm wrapped around air now, and so did a startled Chibi-Usa.

    "He just walked out, saying he needed some fresh air," the tall, dignified Ookuchi Akira said, pointing at the gates of the massive Ohtori Imperial Hothouse, while Akagi Ritsuko stood by her side, silently chatting through her smartphone with a colleague from the job.

    "Well, why didn't you just say so before?!" Chibi-Usa, Usagi and Minako said all at once, then rushed out leaving Akira, Ritsuko, Shiho, Hotaru, Mayu, Harley and Pamela behind.

    They all shared a quiet glare for a few seconds after that.

    "... remind me, why are we all friends again?" Harley said after that.




    Mamoru indeed stood outside now, under the fresh shade of a large tree, sighing to himself. Then the breeze sent several pink petals flying his way, and he casually brushed them off, thinking about the strange twists his life had taken of late.

    The breeze grew stonger, as did the flux of flying petals. Mamoru frowned, looking up at the sky, which was turning darker. "Oh, right what we needed, too," he muttered, having grown savvy about these matters. "Okay, who are you this time, any idiot could realize this is the work of a-"

    "Waiiiii!" he heard Minako prancing behind him then, running around under the rain of petals along Usagi, Chibi-Usa and Harley, while the rest of Senshi dragged their feet out of the hothouse. "What a nice, completely natural phenomenon...!"

    "Boy, it's nice to have something like this after so many weeks battling ill omens then bringing weirdo supervillains along!" Usagi laughed.

    "I know, right?!" Harley giggled, flicking far too many petals out of her eyes. "I can't believe all those morons ran away just because of this! I mean, the only one who would attack mankind with petals would be Red, and she's right here on our side!" She stopped abruptly and gave Ivy a now deeply worried look. "I mean, this ain't you, rights, Red?"

    Ivy exhaled stoically and shook her head. "No, Harley, I wasn't going to do anything like this for a couple weeks. We're supposed to be on vacation, remember..."

    Akira took a hand to her own mouth. "The Vacation Law!" she gasped quietly. "Ala Alba have warned me about this!"

    "Isn't that only when you take the effort to travel all the way out of town to go on a vacation?" Shiho asked.

    "We're in Ohtori, aren't we?" Mayu pondered, rubbing her chin. "Is that far enough as to count? Akagi-sensei, this is in your logs, right? That's why you actually agreed to come with us, isn't it?"

    "I'm as surprised by this completely unexpected turn of events as you are," the bottle blonde said flatly, pocketing the phone back, "and I have no idea whatsoever about that gentleman coming our way."

    Indeed, a young man around Mamoru's age, with short brown hair and the looks of a male supermodel, was walking towards them now, with his hands in the pockets of his pants. Hotaru narrowed her eyes, grabbing Chibi-Usa by an arm and pulling her towards herself. "I can feel evil!" she hissed.

    "I can feel gay!" Harley added. "Not that they are both related, of course!"

    Minako and Chibi-Usa began twitching their eyebrows, seeing how Mamoru was gaping and staring at this man stopping shortly before them, the petals increasing specifically around them. He had paled, and the stranger smiled at him, a strange glint in his pale eyes.

    "Well," the stranger said after a moment. "It has been far too long, Mamo-kun."

    "Excuse me... Do I know you?" Mamoru asked dubiously.

    "I'm Fiore," the young man said pleasantly. "I suppose I have changed a lot, haven't I? I'm sorry, I made you wait too long..."

    "What?" Mamoru did his best Emiya Shirou impression as Minako and Chibi-Usa, again, clung to his arms and joined forces on giving this man the Death Glare.

    "It took me so long, to find the proper flower for you," the man apologized, bowed his head to him. "I looked everywhere, never resting, but it was not-"

    "No, seriously, who are you, please?" Mamoru insisted. "Sorry, you seem vaguely familiar, but..."

    He chuckled, extending a hand forward. "Come on, my friend! Surely, you haven't forgotten our promise!"

    "Ah!" Shiho perked up, now feeling something of a kindred soul in play, and already making Hotaru, Mayu and Akira glance carefully at her. "A childhood friend...!"

    "You could say so," this 'Fiore' suddenly took Mamoru's hand in his, making Minako and Chibi-Usa to pull back in a gasping fit. "Lifelong friends, that's the term I would use, for-"

    And now, Minako was stepping in between them, slapping Fiore's hand away. "Personal space...!" she said. "Look, Mister, if you really are a friend of Mamo-chan, then nice to meet you, but if someone tells you they don't remember you, then it's not cool to just-!"

    Jarringly shifting into an icy sneer, the offended young man spun around to shove her back. "Get out of our way."

    "- waaaahhhh!" Minako lost balance and dropped on her ass, flailing her arms as she hit the ground. "What the-?! Okay, I could have reacted better, but that's no excuse...!"

    "Mina-chan!" Mamoru gulped, rushing to her side to check her out. "Are you alright?!"

    "Not cool, man," Usagi told the scoffing young man. "She's your buddy's girlfriend, didn't you know that? If he hadn't told you, I guess you aren't such good pals after all..."

    "His... girlfriend?" he scowled, turning that dead, chilling stare on her now. "I see."

    And he began walking away, the rain of petals pulling back as he retreated. "Something will have to be done about this," he mused aloud. "If you won't remember, I'll make you remember, Mamo-kun."

    Harley shook a fist after him. "Hey, now I remember why we're friends! It's 'cause I can't take it when assholes do this to my homies! Come back here, Nancy-Boy! Nobody messes with my gals and just walks away like that! I'm gonna punk your flat ass so hard that you'll-!"

    And then he disappeared in a jarring explosion of bursting pink petals all around him, causing most of the Senshi but the ever unflappable Ritsuko pull back gasping.

    Mayu turned in mild panic to Doctor Akagi. "Okay, now I'm one hundred sure you know about this man!"

    Ritsuko shrugged. "Am I supposed to keep complete tabs of Chiba-kun's love life? Don't you think I might have better things to keep personal records on? I mean, I must have those parts filed somewhere, but..."

    "Love life?!" Minako and Chibi-Usa chorused.

    "D-Don't tell them that kind of things, they're getting the wrong idea!" Mamoru protested. "Seriously, I have no idea what's his deal about! Maybe he's a Dark Agency leftover out to mess with us, or something like that!"

    "It's okay if you ever experimented around during your youth, that's part of a normal path of self discovery and identity reaffirming," Pamela calmly lectured him. "That's how I found out I was pansexual, with a main Batsexual vein to my leanings."

    "I'm not attracted to people of my own gender, and much less to Batman!" he told her.

    Harley chuckled. "And now we know for real you're lying...! Everyone's sexually attracted to Batman...!"
     
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