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Thread: Matou Shinji and the Price of Victory (HP/FSN CYOA)

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    The Dread Nekomancer alfheimwanderer's Avatar
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    Matou Shinji and the Price of Victory (HP/FSN CYOA)

    Matou Shinji and the Price of Victory

    A Harry Potter / Fate Stay Night Story




    Chapter 1. Lying in Wait

    Matou Shinji had never really cared for ambushes. In his mind, there was something almost cowardly about striking at someone who couldn’t fight back – at least when the enemy he was facing was human, or close enough as made little difference. That said, he was well aware that such tactics were necessary at times, especially given that compared to the monsters of the moonlit world, he was nothing more than a gnat to be swatted.

    The Trials on the island had proven that much, for hadn’t he only survived the Trials of Insight and Force thanks to the American Champion and the borrowed strength of Perseus? Hadn’t he only managed to eke out an unlikely victory over the avatar of an Outer God by nearly burning himself out drawing upon the power in blood of an Ultimate One’s echo?

    If he’d learned anything, it was that his strength alone was…it wasn’t enough for these terrifying encounters, and no amount of training could fix that. After all, he wasn’t the protagonist of some shounen manga or even some battle-oriented light novel (even if in hindsight, coming to Britain to attend Hogwarts and learn the odd craft practiced by witches did feel like he had been dropped into another world – one whose rules and expectations were quite alien to him, where “doing his best” was one of the riskiest things he could do).

    His one guiding light, his one lifeline to sanity that first year, had been the enigmatic girl named Sialim Sokaris, who had been intimately connected to the moonlit world in ways he could not have imagined, who had endured pain and discomfort on a scale that his mind could hardly fathom – and who had not hesitated to do what was necessary to achieve her aims.

    ‘And as one who strives to reach her side, I can do no less.’

    After all, how could he expect her to accept him if he shied away from what she would have done in his place – from what she would have him do?
    Even if it meant sacrificing everything, even if it meant becoming the enemy of the world and betraying everything he’d ever known, he would do it, because she willed it of him.

    As such, his distaste for ambushes, born out of childish beliefs about risk and honor, weren’t something he could justify indulging – not to himself, and certainly not to her. If he wanted to win, to so thoroughly crush the multitude of worms who sought to tear him apart that they could never rise to challenge him again, he couldn’t hold anything back.

    …which was why he was perched on the ceiling of the Atrium of the Ministry of Magic, with the darkness around him heavy and cloying, almost oppressive, thanks to a rather liberal application of Peruvian Darkness Powder.

    He didn’t, couldn’t, think of those he would soon be killing as fellow humans. Humans wouldn’t commit such terrible atrocities to one another.

    These then were maggots. Worms. Hateful wretches who would raise their hands against the innocent, deserving only of death.

    And the worst part was, he couldn’t just go and seek them, not with as many as there were out in Magical London.

    He had to wait, with anticipation, impatience and fear mingling together into an exquisite brew young soldiers had experienced since the earliest days of war.

    ‘Soon. Soon I will reveal myself to these wretches. Soon.’




    In the aftermath of his perhaps foolhardy oath to hold the line against any detachments from the force sacking London that were sent against Ministry so that its employees had time to evacuate, Matou Shinji had expected to be led to the Atrium by Nymphadora Tonks so that he could prepare himself – and the Atrium – for the battle to come.

    After all, since Zelkova had gone off with Luna, he’d realized that he didn’t have access to fusion, his usual trump card/equalizer in situations like these. Nor had he brought ofuda, the battle armor of the Americans, or something like the Saint Quartz ring with him, meaning that all he had available was what he had on him: the formal robes awarded to him by the Centre (which admittedly had some protective enchantments, mostly since potions brewing could be a risky business), his hazel and coral wand (which he’d used before, but was far less used to than his other wand), and…whatever odd powers he’d gained on the island.

    Even as he’d thought that, his body had begun to change in anticipation of the devastation to come, with his teeth becoming sharper, his fingers beginning to lengthen into claws, the impressions of scales appearing on the surface of his skin, and his pupils shrinking to hellish slits.

    A handful of minutes – if that was really all the time he had – wasn’t enough to do much, but if he drew upon his rage, reminded himself that peace was a lie, that there was only passion, stoked the flames of his inner furnace to terrible new heights, gave himself over to the inhuman power slumbering in his soul, he might just stand a chance against witches and giants and inferi.

    Maybe.

    At the very least, he would not go gentle into the dark night, and if he fell, it would be after taking as many of them as he could with him, their screams of agony as they were set afire, or rent limb from limb, spurring him onwards so that his name would live in infamy for a thousand generations.

    …and yet, when the elevator had come to a halt, the doors had opened not on the Atrium, but a sprawling mess of hallways, with the boy turning to Tonks to confront her for wasting what little time he had with a preventable mistake.

    “Where are we?” the boy had demanded. “This isn’t the Atrium.”

    “We’re—” the Auror had begun to reply, only for her voice to falter as she glanced at him, her eyes widening as she noted his far more reptilian countenance. “…I thought you might want some armor. Or a spare wand. Or something before you went off to throw your life away.”

    “An armory?” Shinji’s voice had softened a bit, as his mind turned to what implements of destruction awaited. “You wouldn’t have anything more useful than wands and robes, would you?” he’d hissed, dismissing most of what he could come up with as useless.

    “We…see for yourself,” Tonks had replied, visibly gathering herself as she stepped out of the elevator. “It will be quicker than explaining.”

    The boy had grunted in acquiescence as he moved to follow, hoping that this little diversion wouldn’t waste too much his already limited time. His life was on the line, after all – well, and those of the Ministry employees, he supposed, though they were hardly as important.

    After what seemed like a small eternity, but was only really fifteen seconds of walking, Tonks had come to a halt in front of what looked like a blank wall, with the boy about to snark about how he hoped her skill in combat was better than her sense of direction, when she spoke.

    “Maledictus,” she’d intoned, placing her hand against the wall as she did so.

    To his surprise, a section of the wall had proceeded to vanish as soon as she touched it, revealing a vast room filled with racks upon racks of things like explosive potions, brooms, bags of suspicious-looking powders, wyvenhide robes, wands, blades, and more.

    “One of our armories,” the Auror had explained, pre-empting the boy’s questions. “We’d meant it to arm our recruits but…” She’s trailed off, shaking her head. “We're going to evacuate as much of this as we can with us, but the rest will have to be destroyed so it doesn't fall into enemy hands. Given that, might as well let you take whatever you think will help."

    Snorting in agreement, the boy had proceeded inside, trying to get a closer look at what was there, because he didn’t have the time – or carrying capacity – to take it all.

    Belts laden with explosive potions.

    Crates of Chocolate.

    Rust red Auror Robes.

    Metal Bucklers, which stood out as odd until Tonks had explained that they had been enchanted to reflect spellfire.

    Platforms capable of creating a shield tall enough for a person to crouch behind.

    Wands of all varieties

    Various sacks of powders.

    Five armored “golems”, with control rods.

    Pouches full of first aid potions.

    and three swords that were obviously magical, what with one oozing strands of darkness from the place where hilt met sheath, one whose exposed blade shone like liquid sunlight, and one whose sheathe was frosted over.

    ‘Huh,’ he’d thought, taking a step towards the blades, one of which seemed to call to something in his soul.

    "I wouldn't touch those, if I were you," Tonks had interjected. “They’re…rather dangerous.”

    Shinji had shot the Auror an exasperated look, as if to say “well of course, they’re magical swords, what the hell did you expect?”

    “That is,” the Auror had continued with nary a stumble, “the wizards who tried using them…they all died in horrible ways. One even disemboweled himself when he tried to put the…the shiny one into a scabbard.”

    “He should have respected the sword as a weapon instead of being careless,” the boy said dismissively. “Especially a sword whose very nature sings of fire and blood.”

    Tonks’ expression had grown tight and pinched at the boy’s words, though she said nothing in reply, only watching as Matou Shinji flitted about the room, grabbing a couple of control rods, sniffing a handful of Peruvian Darkness powder, and generally stuffing his pockets with whatever came to his hands.

    “How do you work these?” was the only thing Shinji said as he finished up his bit of “shopping.” Tonks had turned to look at what he meant, only to see a long rod just in front of her face. “You stroke it or something?”

    “No…” Tonks had corrected, trying to take a step back, only to find herself against a wall. “You hold it in your hands for a minute, so it registers you as a valid user. Then you just tell the golem what to do.”

    “Does the golem have to be able to hear me?”

    “No, not as long as you have the rod,” the Auror had explained.

    “Heh. That works,” the boy grunted. “We should get to the Atrium then, and I’ll just call them afterwards.”

    “Fair.”

    That was the next to last thing Tonks had him before escorting him to the Atrium and leaving him there, letting him handle whatever preparations he felt like he needed to make before the battle began. The last, of course, was good luck”, though he could tell her heart wasn’t in it.

    In the scant bit of time remaining, the boy had done what little he could to prepare the battleground to his advantage, shutting off the lights, sprinkling Peruvian Darkness Powder everywhere, making a few ofuda, calling the golems to guard the elevator room, sealing the gate between it and the rest of the Atrium behind him, and flying up to the ceiling above the far end of the Atrium, where he would lie in wait.

    ‘Soon they will come, and soon I will kill them.’




    Back in the present, Shinji was distracted from his thoughts by a number of distinctive cracking sounds, with his enhanced earth sense noting the appearance of a great many entities, though just how many there were, he could not see, as he was as blinded by the dark as they.

    All the more so since there is no muffled cry of panic, no scattered attempts to cast lumos (which would have been in vain), merely a shuffling of robes, and then a single person barking words in something that sounded vaguely like Russian.

    ‘Well, fine. If he’s talking, then he must be pretty important. Let’s see how the army reacts to me cutting off the head of the serpent.’

    So resolved, the boy did what no one would have expect from a single defender outnumbered by an unknown, but sizeable number of assailants.

    He attacked.




    The wizards who had led the attack on London were of many varied backgrounds. Some were former criminals, out of work and out of luck after serving their sentences, only to be approached at their lowest and offered a chance at redemption by one of the legends of Magical Europe – Gellert Grindelwald himself. Some were werewolves who had been cast out of wizarding society, and left to fend for themselves on scraps and less than scraps, only for an agent of the International Confederation – or a great revolutionary, depending who one asked – to offer them a place where they could belong, to promise them training, shelter, legitimacy, so long as they helped him with something they were already inclined to do: take down Britain, the pariah of Magical Europe, which incidentally was one of the great fonts of racism against their kind.

    And of course, some were career mercenaries, members of the elite company known as the Relcaimers, who had fought on every battlefield there was in Europe. They’d worked for magical governments, fighting against Dark Lords when the forces of those governments could not. They’d worked for warlords seeking to set up a power base in the contested regions that had emerged in the wake of the Soviet Union’s downfall, and for adventurers who needed muscle to clean out the ruins of a research facility or two.

    They’d even worked for the International Confederation as contractors when the use of an ICW member’s official forces might be seen as…provocative, especially if one needed to carry out an operation near the borders, or within the borders, of a magical nation notoriously touchy about its sovereignty – with China being the ur-example.

    Despite their successes, however, they too were outcasts of a sort, given their willingness to do what others were not, and their talent for martial magic in a world where most nations tried to pretend they were beyond the need for something as “barbaric” as the Dark Arts. They were the knives in the dark, used and hidden, never really talked about or acknowledged in polite company, and it rankled.

    …as such, when they were offered Magical Britain on a platter, with their client essentially promising them that not only would there be no consequences for using whatever it took to subdue the rogue nation of Britain, but that the island – and the resources of its Ministry - would be recognized as theirs by right of conquest, many of them saw this as the opportunity of a lifetime.

    Some wondered whether this was too good of a deal, as the ICW and its agents had never offered them something quite so open-ended before, but to assuage their concerns, the man who called himself “Grindelwald” had brought up the bloody history of Statute enforcement, and how in times past, Britain itself had been involved in actions such as the killing of every magically capable man, woman, and child in New Zealand due to the Maori failing to honor the Statute.

    New Zealand had then, for a time, been given to Britain to administer, only for separatist elements among the occupying force to declare independence from Britain. Tibet was also more or less permanently occupied by the International Task Force due to its population of Yetis, so there was precedent for military forces to hold territory and be treated as states or state-like units in the Wizarding World.

    With that sorted, the Reclaimers had set to planning for the assault with a focus some might have found terrifying. After all, what this deal promised was a home – was a place they could call their own at long last. One last job – one last mission – and some of them could retire to a home in a nation that was theirs, with their new status forcing the ICW to finally regard them as more than hired dogs or tools to be used and thrown away at their convenience.

    To achieve that dream, they would do whatever it took – even if it meant killing every man, woman, and child in Wizarding Britain, much as Britain itself had once done to Statute violators, making an example of the rogue nation so that none would dare follow in its footsteps and openly break from the Confederation.

    It wasn’t great work, or particularly noble, but when was war ever noble? Granted, the reinforcements their client provided them with gave them pause, as they’d had no idea how “Grindelwald” had managed to secure the loyalty of the last tribe of giants in the world, and the idea of working with former criminals made some of them turn their noses up, given that even the most hardened killers tended to be undisciplined amateurs at war.

    Still, the very generous pay – and the fact that contact had effectively promised them Britain if they were up to the task of conquering it – were enough to put their concerns to rest, as they’d poured their efforts into training the new recruits into something that wouldn't break in battle, into ensuring the werewolves knew basic battle spells and how to integrate themselves into formations, into making sure they could work with the giants, who were not known for their intelligence or their…ability to act calmly under fire.

    And then the day of the operation had come and so far…everything seemed to be going well.

    Almost too well, really.

    There had been no organized resistance, not even a hint of it, when their troops began their assault on Magical London, after having infiltrated the country via muggle means of transport.

    No Aurors. No "army."

    Not even the usual handful of unlawful combatants who insisted on fighting back.

    Just civilians running around as if the end of the world was nigh – only this time, they were right, because this was the end for them. There could – and would – be no mercy, because that was had asked of them, in accordance with the well-documented precedents of history.

    Perhaps Britain had well and truly been caught by surprise, thinking that the defenses they had erected to prevent non-approved outsiders from entering via magical means would be enough to stop any determined assault? Had the Ministry not thought to pay attention to non-magical means of transport, thinking them unimportant? That was foolish indeed, given the political situation of Europe as a whole, but then, in the wake of the Grindelwald Incident, the British had a bit of reputation for ignoring what happened beyond their shores.

    Perhaps though…there was some sort of reaction force being assembled, just not in time to stop their advance through Wizarding London? If so, if Britain really had written off the population of its capital, then they supposed such a force would await them in the Ministry itself, or within whatever fortress city they had holed up in.

    Granted, it wasn’t unheard of for a Ministry to abandon its subjects, but such a thing was more often the province of Dark Lords than legitimate governments, since ensuring the safety of their people and security of their borders were allegedly two of the functions of any government.

    ‘But then, Britain is a rogue state these days. We should expect no more from their government than from the Dark Lords we have fought.’

    As such, they hadn't been entirely surprised when they appeared in the Atrium in groups of threes (supplemented by a multitude of inferi created on site in London), only to find that there was a thick, impenetrable darkness all around them.

    "Night battle formation," Petrov, their leader for the operation, barked, with the troops scattering and hitting the ground, the officers among them drawing Hands of Glory as the inferi milled around them.

    …which was when a dragon swooped down upon them from above, its flaming breath a line of molten death that erased the strike leader and his squad from existence, the man’s attempts to raise a shield against destruction proving fruitless.

    "Dragon, a dragon! Anti-fire, now!" another barked, throwing up a spell to disguise the direction his voice was coming from. Those who had survived the first pass set to scanning the area as the Reclaimers among them reached into their robes and jabbed themselves with injection vials filled with a custom-made potion just for improving resistance to magical flames – something that unfortunately was often a necessity as Dark Lords tended to enjoy spells like Fiendfyre.

    The recruits among them were forced to make do with the Flame-Freezing charm, which wasn't exactly proof against magical fire, but would provide some token resistance at least - maybe buying a second or two, enough to send a Killing Curse at an enemy.

    Not that any of this meant much when the dragon appeared before them once more, this time from further back in the room, unleashing its flames upon the horde of inferi they’d assembled.

    Sadly, inferi could not be shielded from fire, and so more or less...melted in the flames, with the sickly-sweet scent of burnt pork wafting through the air as the bits of fat and charred meat on them sizzled.

    While the dragon was preoccupied with the inferi, however, seemingly perched in one place, rather than swooping forward, the squads took advantage of the moment to strike back, unleashing a dozen confringoes at its likely position, hoping to hit something important.

    Sure enough, they were rewarded with a chain of very-satisfying booms, and a roar of utter fury.

    They’d hit the bastard – though where they’d hit it remained to be seen. Hopefully they’d crippled its wings, grounding it.

    If not, this would be a much more difficult battle, though either way, what they had to do was clear.

    For the sake of their dream, for the sake of the future they wished to see, they would advance.

    "Inferi forward - make for the gate. Wizards, decay curses on the inferi, then assume fortress formation. Prioritize ice spells - we have a dragon to slay!"




    Shinji’s blood boiled, his vision going red as he managed to flow away from the scene of carnage and into one of the chimneys lining the Atrium, his entire body aching from the mercenaries’ counterattack. One moment he’d been cleansing the world of the filth they’d brought into it, and the next he’d been thrown to the ground, his scales and flesh sliced open by shrapnel when then Fountain of Fair Brethren exploded beneath him.

    With a guttural growl, he pulled long, jagged shard out of his torso, noticing that the black stone was slick with blood.

    His blood.

    "You dare to lay your filthy hands on a dragon, maggots?!" he snarled, his magic reaching out and cannibalizing the material of the chimney to fix the worst of his wounds, though it did nothing for his bruises or what he felt certain were cracked ribs. Still, he could deal with the worst of that too – all he needed was fire.

    The boy clenched his teeth as white hot pain erupted under his flesh, as hungry flames melted bone enough that the fractured were rendered meaningless, even as cracks of light began to appear on his skin as the fire within him built, and built and built.

    Pain there was. Great pain. Agony, even.

    But it was fine. It all was fine.

    He’d simply let the pain feed the furnace of his rage, feed the furnace of his desire to see them all wiped from the face of the earth.

    They – those wretched worms crawling the ground – had dared to hurt him? A wyrm and a master of wyrms?

    For this, there would be blood.

    There would be suffering.

    There would be death.

    "I'll kill you,” the boy growled in a voice not entirely his own. “I’LL KILL YOU ALL!




    Choice 28: What approach does Shinji take to sparring with Rin?

    [ ] Treat it as if it were a life or death battle. Try and take her out as quickly as he can
    [ ] Be aggressive, see what kinds of abilities she can bring out if pressured
    [ ] Lull her into complacency by giving her first blood, but bring out a devastating counterattack
    [ ] Tank her initial blow (Gandr, from what Touko says) and rush her - she won't be able to fight back if she's flat on her back
    [ ] (write-in)

    Choice 29: Hilde has come up with a plan for the upcoming operation, one which takes advantage of the fact that the attack on London created quite a few orphans who are to be placed at WADA, given that it is the only institution which would theoretically house them. Under this plan, Hilde would be a Muggleborn left orphaned by the attack, freshly enrolled in WADA, with Lockhart assigning Hermione Granger as her peer mentor, and Shinji/Rin as her guardians / people who look after the other children.

    Hilde's reasoning is that Hermione will better respect the wishes of a scared peer/kouhai, as opposed to that of a bodyguard she neither wants nor believes she needs for herself.

    Does Shinji approve this plan?

    [ ] Yes, it sounds great
    [ ] Yes, with some suggestions (write-in)
    [ ] No, this is horrible. REJECTED
    [ ] You know what? Hilde being point person is a horrible idea. He'll do it himself.




    Questions? Join the Discord for the Matou Shinji series: https://discord.gg/Hg9F3DW

    Reference documents:
    Shinji's Char sheet
    Tohsaka and Hilde's sheets




    Chapters:

    2. Ira Vehementi
    3. The Forbidden Truth
    4. An Offer You Cannot Refuse
    5. With Nothing to Lose
    6. Fortunate Meeting
    Last edited by alfheimwanderer; July 19th, 2019 at 08:21 PM.
    "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - A.A. Milne

  2. #2
    闇色の六王権 The Dark Six Malgos's Avatar
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    Be aggressive, see what kinds of abilities she can bring out if pressured.

    Given that Rin has almost no experience in situations like these and that she needs to learn something this seems like a good choice. I think that finishing it quickly doesn't let her learn much.

  3. #3
    C/C vote from the previous thread;

    [x] Shinji will be on the defense, ask her to attack him, observing Rin's movements and countering her attacks and keeping his distance. Let her dictate the pace but adjust and correct her rhythm when necessary. Each time she makes a mistake or miss the timing for an opportunity, Shinji will highlight the mistake with with either a light tap from his staff (flow if needed), a stinging ofuda or other hindrance. By having her take the initiative. Goal is to see what how she proceeds when not receiving specific orders, how she goes about attacking and dealing with setbacks. What she can do to pierce through his longer reach, beat his higher experience on the field and outplay his fairy eyes. End with a verbal evaluation discussion - him giving her bullet points for the most important "marks" that need to be corrected.

    Spoiler:
    The marks, are not actual hit with the staff, but simply reference points (you touch her to mark the moment). That way when he starts discussing with Rin (after the sparring session) the evaluation is easier to follow.

    There are few things I want to accomplish with this write-in;

    It's quite long
    >Have Rin being the one to decide to throw the initial punch. Why does it matter?

    It's the very first time Rin has to go against Shinji. While it may simply be an sparring session, she has to work up the will to hit the guy she is in love with, whom she respects most and that she clearly admires a little too much.

    Imagine for a second how anxious Shinji would be if he had to spar with Sion herself, and you shouldn't be far from how Rin feels.

    I think having her throw the first hit can play is a symbolic and essential step in the way she needs to reevaluate his skills down. For now, she imagine him as some sort of heroic man who cannot be defeated by a timid magus like her. That needs to be fixed.

    Why? Because if Rin can be a source of trouble for a guy like Shinji, she can face less intimidating opponents with a more... serene heart and maybe a bit of a boost in self-esteem?

    There is also the whole issue with associating initiative with punishment. That's something you see through Rin's training with Touko and the Fujou as well. Nearly every time she was seen trying to improvise, she was seen either scolded or severely punished for it.

    While it was good for her to learn not get conceited, it also gave her the idea that initiatives are outside her reach. That she is not built for it. That's why she asked Shinji advice multiple times instead of thinking for herself. For her, initiative = punishment. A negative association that certainly doesn't help her growth.

    Shinji must show her that no, you can show initiative and still get something positive out of it.



    >Have Shinji be in the role of a military instructor. Why does it matter?

    Well, first and foremost Shinji needs to rethink his way of doing things. While he managed somewhat in the past years to get by while being mostly dealing and focusing by/on himself only, he now needs to learn to think as a squad leader, and all the responsibilities that it implies.

    Managing your unit's morale, overall and individually, is a prime factor in success. You want to be respected and trusted, then you need to prove that you can be there for them when it counts. Rin's barely out of the nest at this point, while she may have strong potential, her self-confidence is very low and she lacks experience.

    What she needs is not another guide mind you, but someone who will push her to fly by herself. A professional on whom she can rely on to be honest and deliver a fair assessment without judging her for what she lacks. Someone who points out flaws and has her find a solution for it.

    She already knows that they are much more stronger people than her. She has witnessed the harshness of that reality with Touko's puppets, with the Fujou members and knows that some anomaly like Shinji exist.

    Being aggressive here, while she is most likely building anxiety at the sole idea of facing Shinji here or being trying to teach her a lesson in humility, are not ideal yet.

    Aggressive and taking her out quickly will only shove in her face that she is weak / worthless. She already knows that she is lacking, no need to destroy the little ego she has left, nor put more pressure on her.

    Tricking her into getting cocky is something you want to use when the opponent is getting complacent, I don't think Rin is in that state of mind right now. She doesn't need a wake up call.

    On the other hand, you don't need to be nice to her nor do you need to encourage the idea that Shinji is someone invicible either.

    Just do your job so she won't be weight for the team and will be able to act by herself once the situation calls for it.

    Finally, Rin needs to stop looking at Shinji as her romantic interest exclusively. There's a lot for her to get accustomed to, but this is an essential point that she needs to get down. There is more to Shinji than just the boy who went to the restaurant with her or bought a house for her. He is not nice all the time, nor has he all the time in the world for her.

    If he gives her a personal run down on her shortcomings, it should be something that matters, and thus she should be expected to take the lesson seriously by finding ways to circumvent her weaknesses / fix them - especially on the long term.



    >Leave Rin with something solid to work with after the lesson. What does that matter?

    Well, the important part is that Shinji is not simply listings a number of faulty traits that she needs fixing. He is physically go through the extra step to "mark" the moment, in order to discuss after the lesson why that was not ideal. It gives accurate image of important steps.

    That's something important for someone like Rin, since magi tends to work better when mental imagery is involved.

    TLDR; Have her take initiative (without being immediately punished for it), have her build a little self-esteem, have her take Shinji seriously, have Shinji 'test the waters' with the role of leader and leave Rin with a decent starting line for later improvement.

    Note that I'm not saying that Shinji should not have Rin being put under pressure for later training sessions though. I think having her on a defensive role is as important as being on the offense, especially if you want her to learn to be careful. However, I think it's best served for a next sparring event, because she will be in a different state of mind by the time it comes up. As much as I don't like saying it like that; you don't go all out on the girl for her first time, least you might hurt her.

    It's only an evaluation test, no need to make it harder for her.

    Stuff can be tweaked (just hit me up)


    [x] Write-in: Yes - Hilde will aim to get closer to Hermione and reveal her role as a bodyguard when the time is right.


    Edited version discussed with SL.
    Last edited by Daiki; May 20th, 2019 at 09:07 PM.

  4. #4
    死徒 Dead Apostle
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    Be aggressive, see what kinds of abilities she can bring out if pressured

    [x] Write-in: Yes - Hilde will aim to get closer to Hermione and reveal her role as a bodyguard when the time is right.

  5. #5
    [x]Shinji will be on the defense, ask her to attack him, observing Rin's movements and countering her attacks and keeping his distance. Let her dictate the pace but adjust and correct her rhythm when necessary. Each time she makes a mistake or miss the timing for an opportunity, Shinji will highlight the mistake with with either a light tap from his staff (flow if needed), a stinging ofuda or other hindrance. By having her take the initiative. Goal is to see what how she proceeds when not receiving specific orders, how she goes about attacking and dealing with setbacks. What she can do to pierce through his longer reach, beat his higher experience on the field and outplay his fairy eyes. End with a verbal evaluation discussion - him giving her bullet points for the most important "marks" that need to be corrected.

    [x]Write-in: Yes - Hilde will aim to get closer to Hermione and reveal her role as a bodyguard when the time is right.

  6. #6
    死徒二十七祖 The Twenty Seven Dead Apostle Ancestors Skull Leader's Avatar
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    [x] Shinji will be on the defense, ask her to attack him, observing Rin's movements and countering her attacks and keeping his distance. Let her dictate the pace but adjust and correct her rhythm when necessary. Each time she makes a mistake or miss the timing for an opportunity, Shinji will highlight the mistake with with either a light tap from his staff (flow if needed), a stinging ofuda or other hindrance. By having her take the initiative. Goal is to see what how she proceeds when not receiving specific orders, how she goes about attacking and dealing with setbacks. What she can do to pierce through his longer reach, beat his higher experience on the field and outplay his fairy eyes. End with a verbal evaluation discussion - him giving her bullet points for the most important "marks" that need to be corrected.

    [x] Write-in: Yes - Hilde will aim to get closer to Hermione and reveal her role as a bodyguard when the time is right.

    Right...of course we have move the vote over to this newer place and not BC anymore. I knew that.

  7. #7
    The Dread Nekomancer alfheimwanderer's Avatar
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    The vote is currently tied, if I count Malorius' vote from the old thread.
    "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - A.A. Milne

  8. #8
    吸血鬼 Vampire Desann's Avatar
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    [x] Shinji will be on the defense, ask her to attack him, observing Rin's movements and countering her attacks and keeping his distance. Let her dictate the pace but adjust and correct her rhythm when necessary. Each time she makes a mistake or miss the timing for an opportunity, Shinji will highlight the mistake with with either a light tap from his staff (flow if needed), a stinging ofuda or other hindrance. By having her take the initiative. Goal is to see what how she proceeds when not receiving specific orders, how she goes about attacking and dealing with setbacks. What she can do to pierce through his longer reach, beat his higher experience on the field and outplay his fairy eyes. End with a verbal evaluation discussion - him giving her bullet points for the most important "marks" that need to be corrected.

    [x] Write-in: Yes - Hilde will aim to get closer to Hermione and reveal her role as a bodyguard when the time is right.

  9. #9
    The Dread Nekomancer alfheimwanderer's Avatar
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    Choice 28: [x] Shinji will be on the defense, ask her to attack him, observing Rin's movements and countering her attacks and keeping his distance. Let her dictate the pace but adjust and correct her rhythm when necessary. Each time she makes a mistake or miss the timing for an opportunity, Shinji will highlight the mistake with with either a light tap from his staff (flow if needed), a stinging ofuda or other hindrance. By having her take the initiative. Goal is to see what how she proceeds when not receiving specific orders, how she goes about attacking and dealing with setbacks. What she can do to pierce through his longer reach, beat his higher experience on the field and outplay his fairy eyes. End with a verbal evaluation discussion - him giving her bullet points for the most important "marks" that need to be corrected.

    Choice 29:
    [x] Write-in: Yes - Hilde will aim to get closer to Hermione and reveal her role as a bodyguard when the time is right.




    Choice 30: As has been repeated demonstrated over the course of this story, Shinji's performance is very much dependent on the equipment he has on him. Such it has been since he came to Hogwarts learning of Onmyodo, with some basic skills in ofuda making him appear to be far more...puissant than he actually was. And while equipment may not be quite as important as it was before, given given that this Shinji is a draconic flesh golem with some formidable innate abilities, that doesn't mean that one should underestimate one's opponent. Especially when one's opponent is a talented magus who is desperate to impress the boy she likes.

    That said, what equipment will Shinji be bringing to the spar?

    [ ] Underarmor, Illuminati outfit, Ring of Fireballs, Ofuda, Hidden Blade, Wand - the Works: he won't disrespect Tohsaka by underestimating her as an opponent)
    [ ] Just the Illuminati outfit, together withofuda and wand - he traded for it, and he might as well get some use out of it
    [ ] Ofuda and wand - she's been to Japan, so she should be able to deal with ofuda...right?
    [ ] Just his wand will be enough
    [ ] None - he will deal with this without such trifles (begin the match tapping into draconic nature, with body covered in scales)
    [ ] Mystic Eye Killer contacts - his special Eyes are an unfair advantage, and he wants to give Tohsaka a handicap
    [ ] (write-in)

    Choice 31: And what equipment would you be open to lending to Tohsaka, if she asked?

    [ ] (write-in)

    Available equipment: Living Wand (Kodama wood + chimera scale core), Goblin-forged dagger, Black dagger, Mokeskin Pouch, Burnt Potions Satchel (from Sokaris), Hidden Blade (from Zouken), Mystic Eye Killer contacts, Polyjuice Potion (3 uses remaining), Potion of Fading (1 dose), Ring of Fireballs, Illuminati Armor, Touko Underarmor (crotchless underwear), Shard of the Eternal Flame, Cord of Stubborn Resolve, Scarab of Protection.
    Last edited by alfheimwanderer; May 21st, 2019 at 11:54 PM.
    "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - A.A. Milne

  10. #10
    [x] Underarmor, Illuminati outfit, Ring of Fireballs, Ofuda, Hidden Blade, Living Wand, Mystic Eye Killer contacts - this is a matter of right framing: Shinji will show Tohsaka that for years his success has been reliant on his equipment as much as on his skill - and she would be wise to make use of it as well.

    Since this choice is indeed a thing, we have to make the best of it. Give Rin as much incentive to consider crafting route viable and useful as possible. Mystic Eye Killer contacts is a personal preference, I don't want Shinji to use anything but his equipment to win this spar. I honestly dislike the idea of delivering a speech about the importance of preparation and crafting, when Shinji pretty much relies on his innate abilities more than anything else currently.

    [x] Illuminati outfit, Potion of Fading (1 dose), Scarab of Protection, Ring of Fireballs
    - don't put the Ring on her finger with a sappy line, Shinji;
    - damn it, don't you dare do it!


    Rin needs some armor, and Shinji's kinky underwear just won't do. Fading for one doze of extra mobility, it might just save her life in the future. Scarab was chosen with her in mind in the first place.

    Ring is extremely suitable for her, since it's both a catalyst of one of her affinities (we don't really need catalysts, because Dragolem) and a jewel for her magic on top. But, uh, complications. We can deal with them.
    Last edited by Malorius; May 23rd, 2019 at 07:53 AM.

  11. #11
    [x] Underarmor + Wand + Ofuda + Ring of Fire + Potion of Fading.

    [x] Illuminati Armor + Scarab of Protection.

    Rin borrows the Illuminati armor until she can swap for something else (no access to armory until we deal with Hermione quest).

    It also increases her survival / efficiency in case of ambushes on the way (forth or back) to WADA & it allows her to experience the benefits of a crafted armor at the same time. Win / win.
    Last edited by Daiki; May 23rd, 2019 at 11:21 AM.

  12. #12
    死徒二十七祖 The Twenty Seven Dead Apostle Ancestors Skull Leader's Avatar
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    [X] Underarmor, Illuminati outfit, Ring of Fireballs, Ofuda, Hidden Blade, Wand - the Works: he won't disrespect Tohsaka by underestimating her as an opponent

    Going in with the tools allows Shinji to better counter her moves when he tests her and yet show case the importance of good equipment to her as well as skills/abilities. For me, the Works is the best way to accomplish what we have voted for already and to do what I think most of us want to push Rin towards. The idea is not to beat her down with all of these tools, but to showcase how far items go in helping anyone out. Touko has not really shown this cause Rin is about 100 years to early for Touko to need to put that much effort against Rin.

    [X] Illuminati outfit and the mystic eye killers

    Provided that they are loans and that she does not play with the armor and break it by tampering it. As well as when goblin equipment gets rolled out that we reassest the loans. But yes she needs something to help bridge the gap in case the worse happens.

    Stuff like potions I think should be avaibule for the squad use and not just loaned out to one person. Who knows when the mission will require the non-shapechangers to also be undercover. But I am thinking that Shinji will use an action soon to brew potions beyond his own use for the squad. And the knives would be great to hand her expect for what it has a special meaning if its Shinji handing it to Rin. I think we can wait to hand her directly a knife as a small reward. If it was just equipment being handed out in a armory, that would be one thing, but when its Shinji giving her an item that means he finds her skill to be high enough to be a rite of passage? No please.

    And fireball ring should go to rin as it would be far more useful with her now....but its a darn Ring.
    Last edited by Skull Leader; May 21st, 2019 at 11:29 PM.

  13. #13
    死徒 Dead Apostle
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    [x] Cord of Stubborn Resolve + Underarmor + Wand + Ofuda + Ring of Fire + Potion of Fading.


    [x] Illuminati outfit, Scarab of Protection, Ring of Fireballs
    Last edited by skulkidcachi90; May 23rd, 2019 at 11:32 AM.

  14. #14
    The Dread Nekomancer alfheimwanderer's Avatar
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    Choice 30: [x] Cord of Stubborn Resolve + Underarmor + Wand + Ofuda + Ring of Fire + Potion of Fading.

    Choice 31: [x] Illuminati outfit (4), Scarab of Protection (3)




    Choice 32: For each of the items you are open to providing Rin, specify whether it will be a gift, a loan, or a trade. If a loan, specify collateral, conditions, and any way to enforce them. If a trade, specify what you want from here in exchange.

    - Illuminati Outfit: (write-in)
    - Scarab of Protection: (write-in)

    Choice 33: Since Shinji has decided not to give/loan Rin the Ring of Fireballs, Hilde has expressed some interest in it, given that it would be a nice addition to her offensive capabilities. Normally what she can do is tied to the form she takes, so having something independent of that would be highly useful, especially when paired with the enchanted defensive ring Lockhart provided her with, which allows her to conjure a barrier of wind.

    [ ] Yes, give it to her
    [ ] Yes, loan it to her (specify conditions)
    [ ] Yes, trade it to her - surely he can get a favor out of Lockhart for it
    [ ] No, you're not letting Rin (or anyone else) catch you give Hilde a ring - that could lead to all kinds of misunderstandings
    [ ] ...on second thought, just give the damn thing to Rin
    Last edited by alfheimwanderer; May 24th, 2019 at 07:31 PM.
    "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - A.A. Milne

  15. #15
    [x] Yes, loan it to her - in exchange for her good will during the first assignment.

    "Promise to make an effort to work with me and you can borrow it," basically. You're trusting her with something but she is the one who decides how long that trust lasts.

    I think it falls in line with the kind of deal Shinji and Hilde have for the quest, seeking cooperation rather than imposing absolute authority.

  16. #16
    死徒 Dead Apostle
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    Something wierd happened but ok better just vote.

    [ ] ...on second thought, just give the damn thing to Rin

    People wanted Rin AND hilde do an elemental combo, if hilde have the wind Ring make sense give Rin the Fire ring so they can make that combo.
    Last edited by skulkidcachi90; May 23rd, 2019 at 12:26 PM.

  17. #17
    [x] Yes, loan it to her
    - in exchange for her full commitment to the training priorities we choose
    - 10-years-worth-of-prana jewel as a collateral


    Training cooperation is pretty much a given, if our OOC knowledge states. But this provides Shinji an IC reason to push Rin harder, and for Rin to comply (without simply relying on her goodwill) which makes this relationship much easier on them both. More business-like, it is simpler for casual interactions.

    No interest in summoning EMIYA, nor does the exact jewel itself matter here (we can simply say "your most valued gemcraft tool"). What's important is to impose the severity of value of this equipment. If she fucks up, several years of her hard work go down the drain, the basic pattern of loss aversion will drive her to excel.

    [x] ...on second thought, just give the damn thing to Rin

    Not gonna diminish Rin's battle/crafting potential just because of our rampant paranoia.

    Hilde can find another shiny bauble to play with. Her role in this squad doesn't involve throwing fireballs.
    Last edited by Malorius; May 24th, 2019 at 01:52 PM.

  18. #18
    [x]Yes, loan it to her-in exchange for her full commitment to the training priorities we choose

    We need to establish some boundaries so business like transaction is a good idea.The 10-years-worth-of-prana jewel as a collateral works.
    [x] ...on second thought, just give the damn thing to Rin

    Let Rin have an extra offensive ability and see the value of crafted items. When letting Rin have the ring do it in a way that cannot be misinterpreted as a proposal and have Shinji state the ring is a tool to be used to increase her battle abilities.

  19. #19
    Not gonna diminish Rin's battle/crafting potential just because of our rampant paranoia.
    That's your right. Just don't be salty if it comes back later to bite you with the worst timing in the world.

    See, it's only paranoia when it is not justified. You have all the reasons in the world to believe that the girl who nearly worships Shinji as the ideal boyfriend - who keeps seeing/getting signals from him for years - will once again take that as another proof of him still courting her, yet you justify the fact that you want her to have ONE MORE WAY to cast fire balls WHICH SHE CAN ALREADY DO WITH HER GEMS by calling it paranoia? Really, now.

    It's little choices like these that tend to pile up and blow up in your face when you least expect it. I thought people learned a lesson with Hermione and - more recently - Luna, but I see that we're back to square one with all that immature teenager drama crap.

    You can keep gambling all the way through or simply opt to stop while you can still control yourself.

    If you have enough of us being careful with Rin, just vote to jam it in when the choice appears, and be done with it. Granted you're ready for what awaits after.
    Last edited by Daiki; May 24th, 2019 at 07:18 PM.

  20. #20
    The Dread Nekomancer alfheimwanderer's Avatar
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    I just want to note that Rin has a single action spell she can call upon at any time to defend herself/fight someone (Gandr). Hilde does not, which is why she's asking for the ring so that she can better protect herself if push comes to shove.
    "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." - A.A. Milne

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