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Thread: The Grail Works Mission Dossier (Discussion & Ideas)

  1. #6761
    吸血鬼 Vampire
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    Wolfen attempting to avoid repeatedly pissing off every major world power, good. Missouri continues to be a not-quite-antagonist.
    Huh, faction-locked weapons. Poseiden's trident is doing interesting things, it seems.

    I feel like not converting between armor/health systems will often cause strange effects. The math of how armor works in each respective system might be different, or the scales might vary in some other systemic way. Presumably you've normalized this as described, but it still seems odd.
    Wolfen does seem to be in some trouble with that rescue, and I'm really unsure how she'll get out of it. Very evocative description of dive-bombing with the Radiant Wave Surger.

  2. #6762
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    Wolfen attempting to avoid repeatedly pissing off every major world power, good. Missouri continues to be a not-quite-antagonist.
    Huh, faction-locked weapons. Poseiden's trident is doing interesting things, it seems.

    I feel like not converting between armor/health systems will often cause strange effects. The math of how armor works in each respective system might be different, or the scales might vary in some other systemic way. Presumably you've normalized this as described, but it still seems odd.
    Wolfen does seem to be in some trouble with that rescue, and I'm really unsure how she'll get out of it. Very evocative description of dive-bombing with the Radiant Wave Surger.
    Yeah. Missouri went, with the help of her crew, "Wait. Waiiiit. She taught the kid how to FISH? Killing a kid like that just isn't done! You don't teach a kid to fish, then kill them!" and ignored her orders all-together. Doesn't mean if she gets specific orders, she won't listen, but she's willing to listen, as well.

    Faction-locked weapons? Yup. There's interesting things going on in the background, though some of that has to wait until I rewrite the Konosuba omake to include specific things... blegh.


    Wolfen lost about 31k hp (specifically, 30,800) with dropping like that, between mass, speed, etc. Quite literally, her flight rune and electromagnetic antigravity systems were the only thing that saved her from losing limbs, dropping her effective mass from 1000 while her rigging's out, to 400. Took me a while to work out how Scion's damage for vehicle ramming would work out on the vehicle doing the ramming. 2 mile drop, at roughly 770 mph? Rolling for mass per 10 miles per hour, in blunt damage?

    The rest of the enemies have her in a pretty tough spot, but it's going to take quite a while of shelling before they can actually finish her off. Leave almost everything useless and full of holes? Definitely. Needing a horrifying long repair time? Oh, definitely.

    But as far as I can tell, Kantai Collection does damage calculations by taking damage output, taking away damage from enemy's armor, and splits the difference. Usually. Wolfen really isn't getting the full effects of armor right now, however.

    By normalizing? I've effectively worked out how different weapons would screw Wolfen over, far beyond normal effects in Kantai Collection, etc. The magical sparkly shipgirl bullshit, as coined from other Kantai Collection series, isn't effecting Wolfen nearly as well as others due to her not picking a side to fight for. If she changed that, of course, then she'd get converted to Kantai Collection numbers...

    Ironically, the worst matchup for Wolfen at this point? Hoppou. Anti Aircraft flak is the worst damage for Wolfen in the setting right now. Aren't you glad Wolfen's made friends with her?

    But yeah, glad you liked Wolfen's attempt at a rescue, and the dive bombing description. I was aiming for that.
    I'm starting to suspect that talking with Kieran influences my rolls on Fate/Grand Order Heavily. How else can you explain me talking with him, then rolling for 30, only to get 3 Archer of Shinjuku on my second ten roll?

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    Chapter 6: Repercussions and an Asskicking (Or: Why Wolfen is not a Mary Sue.)



    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l9_p-nhZXLg (Rain (female vocal version) ~ Cowboy Bebop)


    Imagine, for a moment, you’re getting thousands of bbs hitting you at once, as a freak accident rains them down on you, like a shower of them dropping down on you, or a bag of them being cut open right over your head.

    Replace bbs with bullets, and thousands with hundreds, and you’ve got the situation Wolfen is in, as she desperately opens fire with her missile launchers and mortars, trying to force her enemies back.

    Main Cannon’s charged, hit them and use the blinding laser to try and dodge, damn it!” Mordred outright shouts, before yelping as a near miss takes out a console near her. “Their shots are going through our armor like a hot knife through butter, damn it! We can’t take much more of this, especially with how you flattened decks five and six!

    Wolfen desperately pulls the Radiant Wave Surger up, hoping desperately to stop the shots using it as a shield in one hand, then dumps extra power into her rigging, desperately trying to shoot down attacks hitting her.

    It isn’t enough. Between the sheer amount of aircraft Airfield Princess had, as well as Anchorage Princess’ own? Wolfen’s getting pounded from all sides, constantly.

    Dimly, for one moment, Wolfen can hear her Mecha Fafnir class mecha all attacking again, but moments later, they go quiet from the sheer weight of the fire against her. Likely having been shot up nearly instantly.

    A blast from the laser cannon drives them off for a moment, but as the steam clears from the laser heating up the water on the ground, Woflen has only moments to realize someone’s in front of her. Then Battleship Princess picks her up using the two massive arms on her rigging, and starts to squeeze, trying to crush her decks in a rather painful way.

    Or her head, Wolfen privately admits, as she thrashes, trying to get away from the pain. The Radiant Wave Surger does some damage, slowly melting into the massive arm holding her.

    But Wolfen flinches as her arm cracks, making a horrible sound as something inside is twisted backwards, leaving the Radiant Wave Surger offline. A long, pained whimper erupts from Wolfen’s throat, as she struggles to fire, to do anything to get the monstrous fighter at her back to stop.

    Multiple cracks resound through her superstructure, as Wolfen can feel the Battleship behind her continue to try and squeeze and damage her more. Then she whimpers, as the feeling of an arm around her neck, holding her up.

    Two wide grins meet her, as Anchorage Demon and Anchorage Princess open fire with everything they have, constantly shelling the nigh-helpless Wolfen.

    Heavy damage to decks 1 through 3! Main Power feed has been separated in 3 different places!” Wolfen faintly hears Mordred’s shouts, as she stares at the two shooting at her. “All the spider silk barriers meant to cushion impacts have been destroyed! Internal defenses are completely open for them to shoot through!

    Somewhere in the pain, Wolfen spots Hoppou being snuck away, as Aircraft Carrier Demon rescues her mother.

    Emergency power’s about all we’ve got left, Wolfen. Not sure how much longer that’ll las-wait. If I drain the main laser cannon of power, we’ll have about 5 minutes of run time, before we start shutting down. More, if I can fire up the Metal Gear Rex line…” Mordred mutters for a moment. “We’re running out of decks to get crushed, though. If she crushes deck 4, we’re well and truly fucked until the Legion of Coal can build new hallways…

    Wolfen struggles, glaring at the ones in front of her, before focusing. For one single moment, Wolfen grins with glee, as her missile launchers and mortars fire everything they have, as fast as they can. A round a second from 8 weapons does a lot of damage.

    Then Wolfen winces, as the arms tighten further around her, before grabbing her, and ramming her face first into the mud.

    “You’ve lost, shipgirl.” Battleship Princess grins malevolently from above her. “Now, all we have to do is finish you off, and then we can figure out your weapons at our leisure. So sink for me already!

    For a long while, it’s nothing but pain, as Mordred continues whispering reports of damage to Wolfen. As more and more of the Legion of Coal get damaged and hurt within her, she can feel huge chunks of her mind almost shut down.

    She doesn’t notice when the gunfire stops hitting her. Too much pain, too many injuries.

    Wolfen does notice, however, when the Battleship Princess falls down right next to her, injuries so bad that Battleship Princess can’t even move.

    “She’s dead. She has to be. No one can take that sort of punishment.” A voice calls out. Slowly, Wolfen struggles to clench a fist. Do anything. Moments later, she starts to black out from the pain and agony.

    “Hoppou didn’t want her to die. She killed that Airfield Princess so easily, but when she landed, she did horrible damage to herself.” A voice vaguely recognizable as Hoppou whispers, from far away.

    Mordred frowns from inside Wolfen, looking at the windows of the metaphysical bridge she’s on, then sighs, before punching them out. Then, she focuses, before screaming at the top of her lungs “OI! We’re not dead yet, over here!”

    Five voices all in sync go “Eh?!”

    “The repairs are going to take days, if not weeks, but Wolfen’s still alive, damn it. Think you can help get her to safety? As her captain, I’m going to be busy trying to figure out how to repair half her shit!” Mordred continues shouting at the top of her lungs.

    Hoppou leans down, looking Wolfen in the eye, then blinks, staring at Mordred leaning out the eyeball and waving a fist at them.

    “She’s alive?!” Hoppou whispers.

    “Main power feeds are cracked in over a dozen places, outright wrecked in others. Thankfully Erik designed her to be able to survive such things, and we’ve still got a deck that isn’t crushed. The stuff Wolfen here bartered for you, from the Japanese is on board, too, in the deck 4 hold.” Mordred admits. “Some might be a bit crushed, sorry.”

    Hoppou silently pulls Wolfen into a big hug, gently, tears running down her cheeks, joined soon after by a relieved looking by Misato, Saki and Ayako.

    “Not too rough, okay? She’s still bad off.” Mordred calls out a little more quietly.

    Hoppou quietly smiles back.

    “I brought them over to help! Did I do good for Auntie Wolfen, Auntie Wolfen’s Captain?” Aircraft Carrier Demon smiles, waving.

    “Yup, you did good, kid. Call me Mordred.” Mordred nods at her. “Now let’s see… if I’m right, the flight rune should be… there.” Moments later, Wolfen slowly floats up off the ground.

    “Good thinking! We’ll tow you as we can, okay?” Ayako smiles, then gently starts carrying Wolfen.




    30 minutes later...




    “So, what happened to our enemies, anyways?” Mordred asks, quietly.

    “We drove them off. Between you taking down that Southern War Demon, and Airfield Princess, they’re not going to be able to challenge us for a while. It’ll let us cement our plans for the area, and help guarantee shipping near us, as well as fishing.” Saki admits, quietly.

    Mordred nods, thinking for a long time, before sighing. “Yeah, repairs are going to be at least a couple weeks, I think. We tore Wolfen up pretty hard to save Hoppou and the little one.”

    “Got it. We’ll have some fish soup ready for when you can eat it.” Misato smiles.

    Mordred nods, smiling as well. “Should be good.”

    Over time, as they sail to the Aleutian Islands, Misato starts to frown a bit, looking down at Wolfen carefully.

    Finally, she sighs. “Ayako, a little help with carrying Wolfen? She’s getting heavier.”

    “Sorry. The Metal Gear Rex units are running out of fuel, and considering that was mostly stored on Deck 2, I’m running low on power for keeping what’s left of the electromagnetic flight system running, to reduce Wolfen’s weight.”

    “Hoppou’s sorry! Hoppou shouldn’t have been kidnapped like that!” Hoppou yelps, moving closer to help as well.

    Mordred looks at Hoppou, then sighs, before leaping out of Wolfen’s bridge, to move over. Then Mordred pats Hoppou’s arm, for what’s nearby, gently.

    “It’s okay. She cares, you know? As her Captain, so do I.” Mordred admits.

    “You look pale.” Saki notes, carefully.

    “I’ve been reinforcing the flight rune with my own personal store of power, little I might have. I only get a trickle charge from the ring Erik made for me…” Mordred trails off, thinking. “Mostly because there’s another ring out there, and the part of me that he summoned from death to serve him? The other me is wearing it, too, getting most of the power.”

    A slow nod, then a pause, before Misato speaks up. “Then you serve her maker?”

    Mordred nods, smiling softly. “Yeah. He’s a good friend, from what I remember. Since I’m still alive, for that other body, though, I don’t get too much. Flashes, at most. Of memories. Perhaps impressions. Not the bulk of what I’d get if the other me died.” Mordred admits, thoughtfully.

    A slow nod from Hoppou, as she thinks. “Your armor isn’t very good for taking attacks. Do you think you’d like us to upgrade it?” Hoppou eventually asks.

    “I’m not sure, to be honest.” Mordred admits. “The armor’s meant for fighting against spiritual beings, like deities, or supernatural creatures, more than Shipgirls, if I remember right.”

    The five Abyssals slowly nod, thinking over that. After a bit, Hoppou frowns, thinking. “I wonder then, if you could give Hoppou upgrades like Wolfen’s?” Hoppou muses. “Hoppou owes you her life, and if Hoppou was closer to your firepower, maybe Hoppou could have fought better?”

    “Maybe? Most of the weapons seemed pretty weak against anything but their own guns, though.” Mordred thinks. “Or it could simply be that Erik didn’t develop ammunition well enough to fight against beings like an Abyssal Princess.” Mordred admits, quietly.

    A quiet nod greets her, as they think. “Hoppou noticed the rifle did wonders, though, on some of them!”

    “And yet, most of the shots tore off armor, instead of hurting them.” Mordred muses, thinking. “If it wasn’t for the Radiant Wave Surger, and you all coming back to help Wolfen?” Mordred looks over at Ayako, Saki and Misato, pointedly. “I’m pretty sure Wolfen would have been sunk. So thank you for the save. As her captain, I’m glad we didn’t sink.”

    For a long moment Mordred smiles quietly. “I’ll be getting back to work on fixing things up, okay? And letting Kongou know what happened.” With those words, she moves back into Wolfen.




    2 days later…




    Kongou frowns, blinking at the screen on her bridge, while awaiting the flight to send her back to Japan, and the email only she can see.

    “So.” Missouri states, walking up to settle down in a chair beside her. “Got you some burgers to eat, and some of that fancy black tea you were looking at in that place we passed by.”

    Kongou blinks, her head jerking up to stare at Missouri, before she smiles softly. “Thank you! Should be delicious!” With those words, Kongou sips the tea, smiling. “Ah, I really do love a cuppa~!”

    “How on earth are you pronouncing a tilde?” Missouri asks, blinking. “Seriously.”

    “As that anime character I just watched last night, Xelloss says, ‘Sore Wa Himitsu Desu!’” Kongou smiles widely at Missouri, before digging into her meal. “Thank you for the food, by the way. It’s taken a few days to really build up my fuel and food reserves after things.”

    “I get it. You’re normally under rationing, even as a member of the military. Even without the rationing, like we have over here, your body’s getting used to the larger amounts of food again.” Missouri retorts, then sighs. “Off the record, any signs of Wolfen?”

    “An email to let me know she’s alive, from a drone she gave me that’s linked directly to my bridge.” Kongou admits. “Still not sure where it got the laptop screen from. My Captain’s been complaining ever since seeing it. Something about ‘newfangled technology’ I believe?”

    Missouri gives Kongou a blank look, before quietly blinking. “Good to know. Off the record, Admiral Richardson is having quite a few people look at him right now, for all his recent messes, and might be facing a demotion soon.”

    “At least you don’t have to worry about a political party assassinating your Admiral like I do, Missouri.” Kongou bitterly replies.

    Missouri flinches, before quietly nodding. “Why can’t they just put aside the politics and let us win the war?”

    “Because they want us to be the super powered weapons they can rely on for true victory.” Kongou retorts. “At least you don’t have to worry about stupid ideas like nuclear rounds being put on board your ship yet.”

    “I’m too far behind on equipment for that nightmare scenario, yes. But the moment a shipgirl comes along with the ability to fire off nukes, I suspect every country in the world will do their best to kill her, or force her to submit to their rule.” Missouri admits, frowning.

    “Considering our attacks have spiritual weight to them, as do the Abyssals? Or at least, that’s what Wolfen calls it.” Kongou trails off, musing.

    “Anything else you’ve learned from Wolfen, Kongou?” Missouri asks, thinking, before taking a sip of her coffee.

    “Mostly how to guarantee I’ll succeed if I decide to seduce my Teitoku!” Kongou admits, right as Missouri takes a large gulp. Moments later, the chair opposite them is covered with spit coffee, as Missouri clenches her nose, dripping coffee out of it.

    Seduce?!” Missouri rants. “I’ve got coffee up my nose from what you just said, Kongou!”

    Kongou simply smiles. “You deserve it for tormenting poor Wolfen, and acting like a metaphorical Javert to her, for nothing she’s done wrong.”

    Missouri glares at Kongou for a long moment, dabbing a napkin against her nose, before she sighs. “Fair enough, I suppose.”

    A long pause, as Missouri thinks. Finally, she speaks up, her curiosity no longer able to be contained. “Say, exactly what did she tell you to do to guarantee seducing someone?”

    “Wearing only your underwear, and an apron while cooking, Dess! The Legendary Naked Apron usually wins against men that don’t realize your feelings!” Kongou grins.

    A long pause, as Missouri suddenly gets an image in her mind, before going a brilliant, bright red, her blush covering her entire face.

    “Got the image of seducing your Admiral, too?” Kongou asks, knowingly.

    Missouri quietly nods, her blush never fading.

    “Well, Wolfen gave some other tips as well…” Kongou trails off, a smile on her face.

    Hours later, on the jet back to Japan, Kongou smirks. “All according to plan…” She murmurs, under her breath. “Better to ensure a Javert is too busy focused on romance to bother someone she shouldn’t be harassing, after all.”

    With those words quietly murmured, her attention focuses on her bridge, and the email she received.

    “Hey, Kongou! Mordred here!

    Sorry for not getting back to you sooner, but repairs are going to be a few weeks at the minimum. Couple Abyssals died before Wolfen took some pretty horrifying damage on our end. She’s only got one functional deck left.

    I’d almost suggest you talk with the Abyssals, but I think you might give them PTSD, offerings of tea or no.

    Good luck on seducing your Admiral when you next meet him, and I hope you remembered whipped cream and chocolate syrup!

    Sincerely, Captain Mordred Pendragon”

    For a moment, Kongou muses. Then a wide smile covers her face.

    “Dear Mordred,

    Thank you for your letter describing your current situation. How long will it be until Wolfen awakens?

    Would it be possible to send, or ship them some tasty black tea, as well?

    On a different note, when I tried putting in the secondary guns Wolfen made for me, I got an interesting notice hovering in front of my face. The basics of it explained to me that if I installed the new weapons, I’d be leaving the Shipgirl (Light) faction of the war for Poseidon’s Trident, to join Wolfen’s own, who apparently isn’t at war with the Abyssals (Dark) faction.

    Any ideas for what’s going on, on that front?

    Sincerely, Kongou.

    PS. No ‘BURNING LOVE!’ for my Teitoku yet. I’m eager to introduce him to it, though!”




    One Week Later

    Kongou blearily awakens, to a beeping sound. Slowly, she glances to her left, staring at her Teitoku by her side in bed.

    A soft smile covers her face, as she snuggles up closer to Suzaku Kouzuki, her wonderful Teitoku, before closing her eyes once more. Whatever the beeping sound was, it could wait for morning.

    Morning comes, faster than either would like. But as her beloved Teitoku starts up his shower, Kongou smiles as she sneaks out to the kitchen, pulling an apron on once more.

    Soon enough, a delicious Japanese breakfast is finished, with some tasty pastries on the side.

    “Kongou. If you continue tormenting me like that, I’m never going in for work.” Admiral Kouzuki admits, a wry smile on his face.

    “Considering how I dealt with the political ramifications of us being together, Teitoku? I think it’s just fine if you enjoy breakfast for a little bit, you know?” Kongou retorts, a smile on her face.

    “A breakfast and a show?” Admiral Kouzuki admits, a wry smile on his face.

    “A healthy body needs a healthy breakfast!” Kongou retorts, a wide smile on her face.

    “I suspect you’re trying to get me dragged back to the bedroom, Kongou. Please stop for now, so I can deal with the terrible demonic inspired creation known as paperwork? I already had to deal with the Emperor over our new relationship once this week, and I recall firmly promising him that I wouldn’t let our relationship interfere with my duties.” Admiral Kouzuki admits, rubbing his forehead.

    “Oh, fine.” Kongou sighs, before smiling brightly. “Finish your food, then go deal with paperwork! I’ll help you with it after I’m done getting dressed myself, Dess!”

    As Admiral Kouzuki wolfs down his breakfast, Kongou hums as she heads to the shower. As she starts taking one, she pauses, focusing on her bridge once more.

    Another email for her.

    “Hey, Kongou! Mordred here again!

    First, bad news. Repairs are going slow. I’ve got decks 3 and 2 opened up and running again, though, so we’ve finally got access to the fuel reserves to repair everything else. Barely, anyways. Thankfully, the spare uranium that the wasabi you fed us, has been enough to ensure the reactors keep chugging out the power needed to keep Wolfen going.

    Gonna take at least another 2 weeks before I can mine enough iron, smelt it to steel, and get it used for the interior, before I can open up the rest of the decks to work on them, though. So approximately a month left before Wolfen can really start doing more than sipping on soup, and replacing lost mechanical crew.

    She’s awake, though barely conscious, by the way. I’m doing practically all the thinking for her and myself both.

    On the different news, Hoppou is rather curious to see if she can join up with Wolfen’s faction like you had the option to. She’s rather worried about the results, though. Her and her kids are kinda… staffed by the dead children, lost at sea. Or something like that. There’s a lot of confusing metaphysical bullshit involved, but she’s worried that if she leaves the Abyssals, all her kids will stop being safely crewed by children, and will start being crewed by others that are less pleasant.

    I won’t be able to get constant communications with you until next week, at the least, as a result of how slow repairs are going. The satellite Wolfen was planning on launching for better coverage got squished flat in the fighting we did to save Hoppou, unfortunately, and getting stuff clearly is kind of sketchy for now.

    Hope you’ve had luck with your Admiral, and I wish you all the best!
    Captain Mordred Pendragon.”

    Kongou smiles, drying herself off, then hums, as she dresses, before going out to the kitchen once more.

    Admiral Kouzuki is long gone for work nearby, as Kongou glances at the time. “7:30 AM? Teitoku needs more sleep than he’s been getting… 7 hours isn’t enough.” Kongou admits quietly, before pulling her own plate of food out, still warm for her to eat.

    As Kongou eats, she words her reply.

    “Dear Mordred,

    Sorry to hear it’s going so slow! Her superstructure must be insanely complicated for 9 days to only repair her this much, so I feel for you! Still, I’m glad the wasabi could help as much as it did. I hope you get faster repairs than you’re expecting, but if my crew can do anything for you, I’ll do whatever it takes to help!

    On my end, I’ve wound up dating my Teitoku! When Wolfen can think clearly, please tell her that her suggestions worked, okay? Mmm. Seducing was the best option I could have done, I’ll admit!

    On that note, Teitoku wasn’t wrong about the Emperor insisting on him showing up to explain himself. But I, Kongou, was there with him to save him, and explain rather nicely, that I would trust no other woman with my Teitoku, and that if anything was done to him, so too would it be done to me.

    Then I asked if he was going to have Teitoku commit seppuku.

    Thankfully, our dear Emperor realized that I was dead serious, and started asking questions rather than pulling rank! When he learned how badly the others had fallen in their desire for Teitoku to serve, he blessed our relationship, and ensured we would have peace so long as we continue to serve Japan faithfully!

    Sorry to hear about the crushed satellite, by the way. As for what’s going on with Hoppou? It would be nice to meet her, and not as an enemy, I’ll admit!

    But I’ll take sending tea via Wolfen express as a nice gift, if nothing else, especially to those poor children that she cares for!

    Best Wishes, Kongou”

    With those words, Kongou hits send, before heading off to the office. “Now, to work as Teitoku’s secretary until the next convoy! I’ll make sure my Teitoku enjoys my ‘BURNING LOVE!’ quite thoroughly, with how I help him!”

    With those words, a giggling Kongou heads off, humming a cheerful British tune.

    Author’s Notes:

    Yeah. Wolfen got her ass kicked in the last two chapters.

    Kantai Collection repairs are effectively a stupidly long period of time to heal up for the mobile game. Adding in the somewhat more realistic nature of this series, no healing methods have been developed to speed things up. Yet, at least. The High Speed Repair Material looks to have been developed in the 2019 summer event.

    Though the anime apparently refers to Repair Fluid? Might just refer to whatever they do to fix shipgirls...


    Eh. This is so early in compared to where the anime would be playing things out, I can say that we’re early on in the setting. Super early on in, truth be told.

    As in “before Ooyodo became the de-facto secretary for the Admiral in the mobile game” early. Looks like Kongou has managed to steal that spot, too! For now…

    Let’s see now, any other stuff… not as far as I remember. Looks like I’m set for posting thi- oh, right.

    That little trick Wolfen pulled out towards the end of the fight, was ordering the Legion of Coal to manually pass each other shells to the mortars and missile launchers, at approximately 1 shell to each, per second. It’s one that canon Wolfen had, and has in Fate/Anarchy.

    At the same time, it’s not easy on any of the weapons, and likely to damage the barrels if going on too long.

    As for Kongou’s side of things? Kongou’s effectively gets to enjoy being happy. At least, until politics might rear their ugly head once more. But that’s a possible story arc for another day. As a side note, did you really think she’d fail to seduce her Admiral, the moment she had a Kisune Goddess’ personal seduction manual in her hands?
    I'm starting to suspect that talking with Kieran influences my rolls on Fate/Grand Order Heavily. How else can you explain me talking with him, then rolling for 30, only to get 3 Archer of Shinjuku on my second ten roll?

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  4. #6764
    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    Out of Order

    A classified location
    Some time after the Great Holy Grail War









    Olga-Marie Asmleit Animusphere was brooding.

    Not sulking—the heir to a distinguished magus lineage, far less one which currently (and traditionally) headed the Astromancy Department of the organisation of magi colloquially called “the Clock Tower,” did not “sulk,” like some petulant child . . .

    No, she was most definitely broo—no, make that ruminating on her future. Yes, that was it. She was ruminating. It was what mature individuals, regardless of their calendar age, did when confronted with problems for which there was no immediately apparent solution.

    . . . And after several moments of ruminating, Olga-Marie decided she would much rather hit something.

    Preferably
    Wodime, in his smug, arrogant, insufferably perfect face . . . ARRRRGGH!

    It was bad enough that he was matching her academic rankings and making it look as though he wasn’t having much trouble; worse still, that he’d garnered so much of her father’s personal attention—but to the point where it was all but confirmed that he was going to be made the heir of the Animusphere legacy . . .?!

    She might have accepted having to marry him, eventually. After all, she would have to produce an heir to the bloodline, and that did require some form of outside input (though she was not quite ready to contemplate the mechanics of it). And on paper, at least, he was a promising candidate; better him, perhaps, than a grump like, say, Lord El-Melloi II. Or worse, one of his students; that happy-go-lucky one was noted for being nearly as talented as Wodime, for instance, and closer to her age—and a complete idiot who should never be allowed to reproduce, much less through her . . .

    Olga-Marie shuddered at the thought.

    On reflection, the Animusphere scion mused, if she had to marry one of the Second’s students, she’d prefer it to be the boy with the glasses—he seemed the type to be easily bent to her will.








    Elsewhere, for no immediate discernable reason, Caules Forvedge felt a shiver run down his spine. Having felt similar sensations when his sister—and worse, Lord El-Melloi II’s sister—was feeling mischievous, he immediately went into “paranoid defence mode,” sealing his room with every form of magecraft known to him.

    (Past experience said that his efforts probably wouldn’t save him, but Caules was nothing if not determined—living through one “tea party” with Reines El-Melloi Archisorte was more than enough . . .)




    Olga-Marie’s lips thinned into a line. She didn’t care what Kirschtaria Wodime could or couldn’t do (actually, that was a lie; she’d love to know what he couldn’t do, so she could mock him for it, but that wasn’t the point right now), she was not surrendering her birthright to him—not without one hell of a fight, at least. She might not win, and even making the attempt might mean going against what her father wanted, but her lineage and her pride in it were all she had. The idea of simply and meekly surrendering that . . .

    (She was already virtually nothing, in the eyes of her father and her peers. Without even that, who would she even be . . .?)

    No. Olga-Marie Asmleit Animusphere would not surrender. She would fight. She would prove to Wodime, the Association, and her father that she was a top-class magus, a worthy daught—er, heir . . . !

    And I’ll
    do it, the platinum-haired magus decided, as she was struck by sudden inspiration, by beating them both at their own game!








    The technology was under heavy security, of course. It was heretical to the Clock Tower, if nothing else, so they couldn’t afford its discovery; much less the potential damage that could be done with it, never mind to it—but Olga-Marie had paid attention to her father’s mutterings regarding the project, snuck glances at his notes . . . Until very recently, after all, she’d been his acknowledged heir; it behooved her to know what he was doing, and to understand it. Also (at least for the moment), she did bear a portion of the family Crest, which entitled her to bypass many of the sorts of protections magi traditionally used against outsiders as a matter of course.

    What technological security was in place, on the other hand, did require effort to bypass—but whatever it was that her father felt that she was lacking, there was nothing wrong with her intelligence . . .

    Olga-Marie checked the status screen again—she’d had to make a few recalculations for her values, rather than those of the anticipated subject's, but everything looked to be within expected, or at least acceptable, ranges. Assuming that things worked out as both her father—and Atlas, who were not noted for being low on the intelligence scale themselves—believed, she should be perfectly safe (or, at least as safe as magecraft ever got).

    And more importantly, she would be successful . . .

    The magus took a deep breath. This was it—there was no turning back now.

    Oh, she could still choose not to follow through, and in many ways, it would be more sensible not to—even for magecraft, this plan contained a number of risks many rational people would deem unacceptable . . . But the very act of warming the system up to the degree she had would’ve attracted notice, if not outright alarm; her father was undoubtedly on his way to investigate right now, and would certainly prevent her from trying this again—

    Olga-Marie stabbed the button which began the activation sequence.




    [Initialising sequence: “Rayshift Experiment 1: . . .” Running . . .]

    [Step 1: Seeking Master Candidate . . . Found. Subject Profile: “Olga-Marie Asmleit Animusphere” locked. Seeking available connections . . . Found. Establishing connection . . . Connection established. Connection locked.]

    [Step 1 complete. Step 2: “Spiritron Conversion” . . .]


    It was a very strange feeling, Olga thought, as the world around her dissolved into gold-white motes; especially as she knew, intellectually, that she was the one dissolving—

    A flicker of motion in what remained of her peripheral vision caught her eye, even as the light threatened to swallow it—a brief glimpse of her father’s bloodless face . . .

    [Step 2 complete. Step 3: “Spiritron Dive” . . .]

    [Step 3 complete. Step 4: Confirm arrival.]

    [. . .Target location confirms arrival. Step 4 complete.]

    [“Rayshift Experiment 1: Moon Cell” complete.]











    Writer's Notes: Testing out the new laptop, and a new idea at the same time.
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

    — Carmilla Theme




    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

  5. #6765
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    I was wondering how Wolfen was going to survive that. Rescue by the other princesses makes enough sense. The HP modelling difference definitely stings there, I can understand how
    Anti Aircraft flak is the worst damage for Wolfen in the setting right now.
    since flak seems likely to be many low-damage hits that don't penetrate armor well, plus maybe some sort of type advantage against fliers. Without Erik, I expect repairs to be somewhat haphazard as well, though the nature of shipgirls might make that part easier for the complex stuff (albeit slow, as we've been shown. I'm guessing linear repair time with HP lost, rather than % of HP lost?)

    Olga Marie is making poor life choices, I think. We don't know precisely how old she is, but she's still pre-Chaldea, which means early-teenage at best. Very interesting premise, I don't really know where you plan to go with it. I'm so used to CCC-adjacent settings that I'm worried about BB, but a regular Moon Cell war seems more likely.

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    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    Olga Marie is making poor life choices, I think. We don't know precisely how old she is, but she's still pre-Chaldea, which means early-teenage at best.
    It's still partially undecided (dependent on a few details I've yet to nail down) - somewhere after the Lord El-Melloi II Case Files, certainly, but whether she's that age, or closer to her F/GO incarnation . . .


    Very interesting premise, I don't really know where you plan to go with it.
    It was actually inspired by her Case Files appearance. Based on what Olga herself said, we know for a fact that her father was looking into using the Holy Grail, but decided it was ultimately unsuitable for his purposes - presumably, to build Chaldea. The core of that, of course, is CHALDEAS and the SHEBA Observational Lens; in essence, a giant supercomputer that views and records all of Earth's history, and is capable of predicting the near-immediate (in geological terms, anyway) future - and gosh, isn't there already one of those in the Fate multiverse . . .?

    Which do you suppose is easier - spending your entire fortune (then winning a supernatural one and spending it) to build the equipment you want, or discovering a pre-existing set by virtue of being the head of Astromancy (and a family whose magical bloodline specialises in that kind of thing), and figuring out how to use it?

    (And yes, it's claimed that the Moon Cell doesn't exist in the mainline Fate universe - but if it can exist in F/GO, and is capable of "quantum-locking" timelines, then I call BS. Especially since the Moon Cell had to get its NPC designs from somewhere . . . )


    I'm so used to CCC-adjacent settings that I'm worried about BB, but a regular Moon Cell war seems more likely.

    Indeed - and as this isn't an EXTRAverse (presumably), any Grail War which might actually take place would undoubtedly play out quite differently, no?

    . . . Then again, as Ms. Elizabeth often reminds us, "constants and variables" . . .
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

    — Carmilla Theme




    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

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    Ahhh, I was reading her as less-mature than her Case Files appearance from her narrative style. She's young in Case Files, but I'm probably reading her dialogue as immature because you're presenting her being sheltered, which is faithful to her Case Files appearance.

    And you're dealing with cross-universe timelines anyways, so you don't really need to make too many hard arguments about whether the Moon Cell exists outside of EXTRAverses. It does seem like a good alternative to making CHALDEAS and SHEBA, but is likely to be a bit more treacherous than rolling your own.

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    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    Ahhh, I was reading her as less-mature than her Case Files appearance from her narrative style. She's young in Case Files, but I'm probably reading her dialogue as immature because you're presenting her being sheltered, which is faithful to her Case Files appearance.
    She's also eleven in Case Files, according to every source I could find, versus 22 (or 24, for the Western version) in F/GO; so really, there are arguments for and against using her at an "in sync" point with the Works' nominal time period (since, theoretically, she could be the Works' version of Olga-Marie). T(w)eenage rebellion is a reasonable excuse for her actions - and possibly continuing the old joke - but . . . Then there's F/GO Olga-Marie's fate to consider, as well - it's the sort of thing the Works would try to save her from - though potentially very complicated, with

    Spoiler:
    her potential link to Beast VII



    . . . As I said, I'm undecided at the moment. Much like on exactly whom she might summon as a Servant; compatibility-wise, there are many options she seems to qualify for (though the Sakura Five, are, of course, out).


    And you're dealing with cross-universe timelines anyways, so you don't really need to make too many hard arguments about whether the Moon Cell exists outside of EXTRAverses. It does seem like a good alternative to making CHALDEAS and SHEBA, but is likely to be a bit more treacherous than rolling your own.
    Indeed - though potentially exactly what Olga-Marie wants, even if she doesn't know it. After all, extrapolating from Extella, the whole reason the Moon Cell initiated the Holy Grail War was to find someone capable of commanding its anti-Velber measures, following Sefar's attack (and that, at least, is confirmed to have happened in mainline Fate universe, as well).

    (. . . And yes, I know that no official source hyphenates her name - but if they're going to give her a separate middle name, then . . . )
    Last edited by Kieran; December 2nd, 2020 at 10:11 PM.
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

    — Carmilla Theme




    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kieran View Post
    She's also eleven in Case Files, according to every source I could find, versus 22 (or 24, for the Western version) in F/GO; so really, there are arguments for and against using her at an "in sync" point with the Works' nominal time period
    Oh, huh. I did not know that. I feel like I should have, once I compare the timelines, but it's still surprising. She acts a bit older than that, though not by much, which I suppose it also characteristic of magi. That would make sense, then.

    . . . As I said, I'm undecided at the moment. Much like on exactly whom she might summon as a Servant; compatibility-wise, there are many options she seems to qualify for (though the Sakura Five, are, of course, out)
    She supposedly has very bad compatibility as a Master, if I recall her backstory in Grand Order correctly, but you can probably wing a fair number of options. The Sakura Five being Alter Egos offers an interesting theme to explore, but would be a bit of a stretch. Elizabeth also has some amusing potential, but doesn't feel terribly compatible. After that, a lot of the canon servants encountered seem like they have potential (Nursery Rhyme, Gawain, Arceuid, Cu, etc)

    Indeed - though potentially exactly what Olga-Marie wants, even if she doesn't know it. After all, extrapolating from Extella, the whole reason the Moon Cell initiated the Holy Grail War was to find someone capable of commanding its anti-Velber measures, following Sefar's attack (and that, at least, is confirmed to have happened in mainline Fate universe, as well).
    Interesting. I have heard Sefar was one of the big divergence points between Tsukihime and Fate universes somehow, and there's some other things that relate to Sefar that are plot-relevant for this fiction. I can certainly guess why Wodime would be a good candidate for the Moon Cell with that in mind.

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    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    Oh, huh. I did not know that. I feel like I should have, once I compare the timelines, but it's still surprising. She acts a bit older than that, though not by much, which I suppose it also characteristic of magi. That would make sense, then.
    It caught me by surprise when I first encountered it, too; the fact that her design has her look not much older than the protagonist (if at all) in F/GO, and closer to Reines' or Gray's age in Case Files . . . Being that age would make her present actions make sense (and potentially a continuation of the "lolicon" joke), but . . .

    (Truthfully, I'm half-tempted to have her be eleven, but have her avatar look like F/GO Olga-Marie, as the ideal she wants to be - just so people can react to finding out her actual age. )


    She supposedly has very bad compatibility as a Master, if I recall her backstory in Grand Order correctly, but you can probably wing a fair number of options.
    Oh, yes - but I honestly suspect that's a fabrication her father made up to keep her off the front lines, because we have plenty of examples of normal people being able to hold contracts . . . And also, that's for traditional Heroic Spirits. Virtual ones likely don't operate quite the same way.


    The Sakura Five being Alter Egos offers an interesting theme to explore, but would be a bit of a stretch.
    Especially as, assuming this is analogous to Fate/EXTRA, they shouldn't exist (yet . . .?)


    Elizabeth also has some amusing potential, but doesn't feel terribly compatible.
    In the sense of being self-centred, certainly, but a lot of those she's compatible with that way would likely kill her themselves, eventually.


    After that, a lot of the canon servants encountered seem like they have potential (Nursery Rhyme, Gawain, Arceuid, Cu, etc)
    Offhand, Nero and she have an innate need for praise in common; and "Nameless" has a lot of experience with tsunderes - though it strikes me as retreading either EXTRA's canon storyline or Rin's . . . Olga-Marie shares parental issues and the need for acknowledgement with Mordred - but the same could be said of Jack the Ripper or Frankenstein . . . And if she is eleven here, Nursery Rhyme as the "Hero of Children" would suit, but probably not as "Alice" (so what would be the point?) . . .

    . . . As I said, it's presently undecided, and a complicated decision to make; if I go by "compatibility," what criteria am I using to define "compatible?" Her need for her father's approval, or to throw a wrench into his plans? Her magecraft specialty, or noble birth? Her tsundere attitude, her innate self-loathing . . .?


    Interesting. I have heard Sefar was one of the big divergence points between Tsukihime and Fate universes somehow, and there's some other things that relate to Sefar that are plot-relevant for this fiction. I can certainly guess why Wodime would be a good candidate for the Moon Cell with that in mind.
    To say nothing of Atlas' own potential candidate (and yet another rival) . . .
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

    — Carmilla Theme




    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    I was wondering how Wolfen was going to survive that. Rescue by the other princesses makes enough sense. The HP modelling difference definitely stings there, I can understand how since flak seems likely to be many low-damage hits that don't penetrate armor well, plus maybe some sort of type advantage against fliers. Without Erik, I expect repairs to be somewhat haphazard as well, though the nature of shipgirls might make that part easier for the complex stuff (albeit slow, as we've been shown. I'm guessing linear repair time with HP lost, rather than % of HP lost?)
    Yeah, Wolfen was in a pretty bad situation. If Misato, the friendly Battleship Princess, wasn't around, as well as the others coming to support her? She could have well died from that. As it is, she got curbstomped and hard once she finally met enemies she couldn't simply overpower with aggravated damage melting through armor.

    Flak damage, yeah. Lots of little stuff, in a shrunk down ship shaped as a human body? It's utterly devastating to Wolfen, as she is now. If she joined up with one of the two other factions, it would help, but she'd be drastically weakened in a lot of ways.

    As for hp, and damage? The Legion of Coal know how to repair Wolfen. Even to upgrade Wolfen, considering how much they were used for the initial upgrades. But the problem is, is that Wolfen's not just a ship anymore, but a woman, as well, which complicates things greatly.

    Add in that a lot of her decks were outright crushed almost flat? It's definitely worse than the standard hp x 10 for time to repair for low level ships in Kantai Collection. 500,000 seconds is about 5.79 days, usually, but compounding the issue would be crushed decks, and having to figure out how to repair decks in a shipgirl for the first time, not being used to the differences in repairing a ship in the shape of a woman, just as much as a woman who happens to also be a ship, and figuring out how to fix Wolfen without stopping her heart, etc.

    It's adding up to a lot more work then they anticipated, and with a good chunk of the Legion of Coal units crushed? I think you get it.

    Admittedly, since Hoppou's classified as an Installation, as well as Ayako, or Midway Princess, they're both likely able to do major repairs. If they join Wolfen's faction, or she joins theirs, they could probably speed up repairs heavily. But that requires one to join the other side, etc. etc.

    Ah, right. Before I forget, the Konosuba omake snip is... about 75% complete? We're still working out certain specifics involved with things.
    I'm starting to suspect that talking with Kieran influences my rolls on Fate/Grand Order Heavily. How else can you explain me talking with him, then rolling for 30, only to get 3 Archer of Shinjuku on my second ten roll?

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    A Thousand Curses Upon This Wonderful World, Part 4 (KonoSuba X-over)

    Continuing . . .







    Start
    *Continue*
    Quit









    Avalon Castle, Phantasmagoria Island (Grail Works, Ltd. Headquarters)
    Outside the boundaries of time and space









    It went without saying that the Works’ headquarters was protected to a phenomenal degree. After all, in addition to the overlapping Bounded Fields attached to the castle which were provided by the combined knowledge and ability of the Tohsaka, Matou and Einzbern clans, the whole of the island was under the continual protection of Avalon itself. Still, despite all that, still possessed a few unavoidable weak points. The first was that said defences could be overwhelmed by entities or organisations of sufficient power—potentially including but not limited to deities, pantheons, and things on a similar tier.

    Hence the Works’ general attempts to operate in secret, since rarely did one find something they didn’t know to look for, after all. The other primary weakness was that the castle was anchored to the outside world; more specifically, within the homes of its members in Misaki Town and Fuyuki City. While, again, protections were (now) in place to prevent accidental discovery—no one, save perhaps Kohaku, wanted a repeat of the “Mushroom Kingdom Incident”—someone who did know of their existence, and was capable of mounting a determined assault on one or more of their homes, might be able to break in . . .

    Or perhaps she was just uniquely suited to getting in; Rin had never actually seen her Saint Graph, but from what Ilya had let slip, it was possible—and that was without being particularly upset, or otherwise inspired to put forth any significant effort to do so.

    . . . Judging by the feeling of malice creeping through the air, however—a smoky pressure on the wind, seemingly blowing through the street in front of her house—the Tohsaka heiress doubted that would be the case this time.

    And in her heart of hearts, the young woman usually subsumed by the Tohsaka heiress couldn’t really blame her—if someone had done this to her, she would be a lot less subtle in her wrath. The portion of Rin that was the Tohsaka heiress, however, was too focussed on that wrath, and the fact that the being containing it was a Servant; with all the destructive potential that such a thing implied; as well the specific individual’s penchant for overkill . . .

    I
    swear that’s the reason they get along so well—and if I’d known, back then, that he could summon her, he’d have gone right back through the Door!

    Much to her surprise, her front door was not exploded into splinters—along with probably most of the mansion’s front exterior. Instead, the new arrival announced herself by ringing Rin’s front doorbell.

    The inanity of that mundane little chime caused her jaw to half-sag towards the floor.

    “She’s being polite?” Rin sputtered disbelievingly.

    She traded glances with Saber. The blonde’s face was impassive, but her posture was tense.

    “She’s being polite,” the Servant repeated back to her tightly, warning evident in her tone.

    Given the woman’s usual behaviour, this set alarm bells ringing alongside the doorbell—which Rin abruptly realised she ought to answer, now. As out-of-character as she seemed to be at the moment, the magus doubted those unusual alterations included additional patience . . .

    Opening the door revealed a young woman with Japanese features and a corresponding stature; she was shorter than even Saber, but as poised and confident as if she towered over them rather than the other way around. Indeed, most of the rest of her appearance had much more in common with Rin than the King of Knights.

    Her skin was as smooth as cream, with a lightly gilded tone to it, much like Rin’s own, and her hair was a glossy black, falling past her waist like a silken veil (which Rin’s might, if she’d not long ago decided it was too much trouble to leave it loose). Likewise, they had a shared penchant for red—but the thing they had most in common was the smile that currently adorned the other’s face. It looked both pleasing and pleasant, even cheerful . . .

    But it was a mask, and they all knew it.

    “Hello!” the visitor said brightly, in a chipper, nearly saccharine tone.

    It was not entirely convincing in its nonchalance—the underlying brittleness of it gave the impression of sugared ice. Likewise, her eyes were half-closed in an almost lazy expression of amusement, as though she were truly lost in her own thoughts; but with her next words, that smile stretched to lengths that made her whole expression seem more fragile than glass.

    “I have a question for you and yours, Tohsaka,” she said, still cheerfully. “Something of mine was recently stolen, you see.”

    Her eyes opened only fractionally, but with that movement, they went from drooping with disinterest to slits that positively glowed with burning malevolence, in sharp counterpoint to the freezing contralto her voice dropped into.

    “Who do I destroy for this insult?”

    Rin was a magus, and thus walked with death as a matter of course. At her side was a Heroic Spirit whose legend was known worldwide as one of the greatest warrior kings in either myth or history . . . But she was also a Japanese girl of not-quite-eighteen summers—and before her was a Heroic Spirit who was, at least in Japan, so infamous as to be analogous to the Devil himself . . . And given her family’s Christian roots, said analogy carried a bit more weight.

    She swallowed heavily, and stepped to one side, before saying in a not-quite-even voice, “I think you had better come inside.”

    That malicious glare focussed on her sharply, and Rin could feel Saber tense at her side . . . Before an abrupt bark of laughter escaped the thinned lips.

    So—it’s like that, is it . . .?”

    Cheerful mask back in place, if showing sharper teeth than a strictly friendly smile would qualify for, she passed through the threshold.

    “Pardon the intrusion—it can’t be helped!”








    Oda Nobunaga, Demon King of the Sixth Heaven and Servant Archer, considered the tea and snacks before her.

    On the one hand, it was pleasing that her favourites had been remembered—she did so like to leave an impression. Nearly as much as she disliked teaching a lesson more than once, in fact (though her examples inevitably hated it more). Still, while she remained unhappy that her foremost retainer insisted on continuing his association with them, she could not fault their hospitality—even if the foodstuffs before her were not quite so high in quality as before. Indeed, that fact, as it turned out, was the source of the problem . . .

    “Emiya has died?” Nobunaga exclaimed. “NO! This is a major setback in my plans to conquer Japan . . .!”

    “He wasn’t going to help you conquer Japan even when he was alive,” Rin said irritably.

    “I was willing to accept his resolve not to arm my forces!” the Archer protested. “It would be a terrible loss to my war machine,” she admitted, shrugging offhandedly, “but what’s life without challenges? As long as he was willing to cook—

    A sudden snap drew everyone’s eyes, and Archer suppressed a grin. Though the Saber’s face was expressionless, the broken chopsticks in the other Servant’s grip as good as proclaimed that her jibe had hit home. Still, Nobunaga felt the need to “twist the knife a little,” as they said nowadays.

    ‘An army marches on its stomach,’ after all,” she proclaimed, nodding sagely. “And I can always find a use for such talented hands . . .”

    An Archer’s best asset might be their vision, but there was nothing wrong with Nobunaga’s ears; she could easily pick out the sound of several sets of grinding teeth, despite the otherwise placid expressions of her dining companions.

    Inwardly, she sighed. Ah, this is no good—no good at all . . .

    She didn’t much care about her fellow Servant, precisely; at least, not beyond the fact that there was something about her that both made Nobunaga want to annoy her, and that made provoking her hilarious. But the human girls . . .

    Both of them were Japanese women; women who had talent, capability, and the wisdom to throw out the rules that constrained them (Tohsaka more than Matou, but the latter girl was a survivor, which she also respected) . . . But not the conviction to really pursue their desires. It was irritating to see, and she was determined to get them to act—even if she had to set herself up as their utterly shameless rival in order to do it, Nobunaga was going to make of them the women that her country should have!

    Whichever of them actually won the boy didn’t really concern her, of course—if need be, she’d conquer Japan just so she could marry them all to him—so long as they actually acted to do so. This half-heartedness would not stand!

    And if I can beat that sort of nonsense out of my retainer, girls, I can certainly do the same to you.

    Which reminded her . . .

    “As you didn’t appear with a message, and that didn’t seem to be one of the usual gates to the Underworld, what does Emiya’s death have to do with whatever took—?”

    The other little girl ghost her retainer associated with interrupted her, but given the nature of the interruption, Nobunaga decided that she could be forgiven.

    “He’s explaining it himself, right now—he just gave me a cue to listen in.”

    With a careless gesture from the snow-white child, an image of both youths—outside of some village—appeared . . .








    Outside Axel, Town of Beginnings
    Kingdom of Belzerg
    Date unknown









    “—ya, you had better be paying attention to this,” Frid muttered, before smirking. “Because the alternative is searching through all my notebooks.”

    Which was great for the students in the Works, as a practical exercise for their comprehensive English skills. Given the sheer number of the damned things he’d had to write out, however (essentially, one for every work of fiction or era of history he knew of), even a top student and natural researcher like Rin wouldn’t enjoy it.

    Shirou shuddered, causing Frid’s smirk to widen. Not even the boy so dedicated to working hard that he’d killed himself doing it (and they would have words about that, the Bound promised himself) relished that thought.

    Aloud, however, he said, “Hey—if you guys would give in and let me get a computer, I could at least make it take up less volume.

    I would,” Shirou returned, “but between Tohsaka and Tohno-san . . .

    “Oh, I know,” Frid assured him. “I’m just reminding the peanut gallery.

    (A literal world away, Nobunaga grinned proudly—he was learning so well!)

    Dismissing Red’s giggles for the moment, the newly minted Thief began to explain.

    “The title of the work is KonoSuba, colloquially; its full title is so long and complicated I never bothered memorising it, but it’s usually translated to ‘God’s Blessing on This Wonderful World!’—meant largely sarcastically, of course, as it often is in comedy series. It was a web novel, which I’ve never seen, that got published as a light novel series, and then to anime, manga, at least two video games . . . No stage shows that I’m aware of, though.

    “The basic plot is an isekai story, though it’s largely meant as a parody of them, wherein ‘hikiNEET’ Satou Kazuma is sent by the goddess Aqua to this world to defeat the Demon King—except that, being a largely-unmotivated gamer, Kazuma’s stats aren’t high enough for anything but the basic Adventurer class, and his ‘cheat item’ is Aqua herself—

    What?” Shirou blurted out. “How did that happen?”

    “She ticked him off enough during their encounter for him to demand it out of spite; and since Aqua is as much of a slacker as Kazuma is, most of the time, I assume office politics got it approved. She’s booted out of the Divine Realm until Kazuma manages to accomplish his mission—or, given that most ‘cheat items’ linger in the world after the hero’s passing, sometimes for centuries, maybe not even then.

    Shirou blinked. “Wait, what?

    Frid rolled his eyes. “Caught that, did you? Yeah, Kazuma’s far from the first person Aqua tried to sucker into this—you didn’t really think that the rebirth situation could develop into something that bad as quickly as a year or so, did you? Beyond that, I’ve heard that the web novel states that ‘Demon Kings’ are a cyclical thing on multiple worlds—but more importantly, what I’ve personally read of the series implies that this Demon King is one of Aqua’s prior reincarnates; so basically, we’re cleaning up her mess.”

    Shirou frowned. “That’s not good, I agree, but should it matter? People are suffering no matter who’s ultimately responsible.”

    “And you wonder why she keeps pursuing you . . .” Frid muttered under his breath.

    It had taken him a while to learn Nobu’s quirks—she deliberately didn’t make it easy, for obvious reasons, and she was a very convincing ham—but she respected conviction, more than almost anything else. She would still absolutely crush a rebellious spirit under her heel, if it was a genuine threat to her authority; unlike Gilgamesh, however, it was less out of contempt than necessity. Oda Nobunaga had sought to unify Japan not (simply) out of a lust for power, but because the country had suffered through centuries of dissent and war by the time of her birth—and she would not tolerate it any longer.

    It was for that reason alone, Frid reckoned, that such an impulsive and unconventional spirit as hers could be qualified as “Lawful Neutral” in alignment . . .

    Shaking himself mentally, he returned to the topic at hand with, “Eventually, I’m told, Kazuma succeeds, but he doesn’t have it easy. His only real personal advantage is absurdly high Luck; which I figure between the pair of us, we’ve got covered—but it applies to both good and bad circumstances. If it can happen, however unlikely it is, we’re liable to get caught in it. Our one saving grace is that the Rule of Funny tends to dominate here.

    “His party is a bunch of ‘problem children,’ as Kazuma puts it—Aqua has low Intelligence and Luck, which means she does stupid things like spending Skill Points on party tricks rather than useful ones and insisting loudly that she’s a goddess to all and sundry, when keeping a low profile would serve her better—not to mention slacking off whenever and wherever she can get away with it.

    The other two primaries are no better; their ‘melee fighter’ has every defensive skill under the sun, but literally can’t hit a stationary object with her sword, most of the time. She also has a tendency to get lost in masochistic fantasising, and has no brain-to-mouth filter when that happens . . . Most annoyingly, however, is that despite her lack of melee skills causing actual problems, it never seems to occur to her to acquire one.”

    Frid scowled. Megumin might, on paper, be the most intelligent of the group, but Darkness was not portrayed as stupid; and her sense of honour made her more practical, to an extent. Granted, forcing Kazuma to diversify in order to cover for the party’s lack of a general damage-dealer wasn’t a bad thing—heaven knew, he coasted wherever possible—but given her general Strength, the waste of it. . .!

    “Rule of Funny,” he reminded himself mentally, and I might be misremembering—she picked up something in the later books, didn’t she . . .? A lot later than common sense would’ve dictated, though . . . Although admittedly, without all those defensive skills, she might actually have died against some of the things they faced—

    “Knowing you,” Shirou interrupted his thoughts, “you’ve saved the worst for last. How bad is it?”

    “The Arch-Wizard, MEGUMIN!” Frid proclaimed melodramatically, “Born of the Crimson Demon Clan—or Crimson Magic Clan, depending on the translation—famed for both their innately high Intelligence scores and their collective chuuni delusions, she is the master of the most powerful attack spell in existence, EXPLOSION!

    “. . . And nothing else,” he finished sourly. “In fact, she refuses to learn anything else, insisting on specialising in a tactical nuke of a spell that literally takes almost everything she’s got—after a single casting, she’s one step away from unconscious, needing to be carried away from the battlefield.”

    “That’s . . .” Shirou trailed off, and Frid could guess his thinking. As a sacrificial sort, he would certainly understand working yourself into the ground, but . . .

    “Handy, if you can be sure of a one-shot kill,” the Bound admitted. “And aren’t, you know, in an enclosed area, or anything . . . But for anything less, or a more complex tactical situation—which she never really considers—it’s more a hindrance than a help. And her insistence on using her daily spell makes her a general menace to the townspeople, given the noise pollution and collateral damage of setting off massive explosions on a day-to-day basis. Especially since she’s continually working to upgrade its power and area of effect—and minimize the casting time, too.”

    Shirou winced visibly, and Frid trusted his point was made.

    “. . . They’re not totally useless, by any means,” he admitted. “Kazuma could never have accomplished what he did if they were—and some of this is no doubt dictated by narrative convenience, and the need for Funny to rule over all . . . But for practical purposes, they’re not going to be much help to us; plus, if Kazuma does end up showing up, he’ll need them . . . And we’re probably well ahead of any of them arriving here, anyways.”

    “So, who would you have in mind?” Shirou inquired, with an earnest look on his face.

    Inwardly, Frid frowned. On the one hand, it was nice to be trusted as “the guy who always has a plan”—on the other hand, Shirou needed to start using his own head; he wasn’t stupid, by any means, but he was developing a habit of relying on others for his strategies. Granted, Rin would browbeat any idea she thought of as stupid, but her track record was hardly spotless, nor was his, for that matter . . .

    Still, for the moment, he’d let it slide.

    “If we were relying strictly on the locals,” the Bound mused aloud, “In terms of fighting prowess, Iris would be ideal—she’s apparently Level 60, or equivalent to it, with all her innate buffs—but we’ll never get to her, and you wouldn’t like it if we did.”

    “Oh?”

    “She’s twelve,” Frid explained. “Also, the kingdom’s princess.”

    “. . . I see,” Shirou said, apparently for lack of a better response.

    “For what it’s worth, she’d likely be willing to come with us—she’s lonely, bored, and enthralled by the prospective thrill of adventuring—but getting past her guardians, never mind getting her out past them . . .” He shrugged, then added dryly, “Plus, I don’t think Ilya would like Iris potentially adopting you as her ‘Big Brother.’

    Huh—so that’s what a full-body shudder looks like . . .

    “No,” Shirou agreed nervously, “I don’t think she would . . . But Saber and I can handle that end of things—what about magic?

    “Again, the ideal candidate’s not an option,” Frid said. “Wiz might run a magic item shop now, but she’s still an arch-wizard—and was apparently capable of beating the hell out of several of the Demon King’s generals by herself, if her wiki profile was accurate . . . Unfortunately, she’s forced to remain neutral, save for very specific circumstances—and right now, there’s nothing we can do about that. Still, we should hit up her shop anyway; while, in keeping with the Rule of Funny, she’s perpetually losing money because she stocks useless things, that also ‘includes end-of-game equipment which is too expensive for a beginner town’ . . . Again, according to the wiki, so there’s a necessity for the proverbial grain of salt—but we do have all this money . . .

    Frid grinned, and Shirou matched it, for once.

    “Alternatively,” he continued, “Megumin’s frenemy Yunyun is better-rounded, and generally more sensible—she’s got confidence problems that make Sakura look like a queen bee, but that’s fixable . . . Unfortunately, I think she arrives either with or in parallel to Megumin, and Kazuma and Aqua were here when that happened. If Aqua’s still running things at the moment, then . . .”

    The Bound shrugged.

    “What do we do in the meantime?” Shirou asked—or at least, wondered aloud.

    “Bank money for potions and magic items, as well as healing sessions at the local church,” Frid said bluntly. “But if we’re lucky, we might not need a mage-type at all . . .

    “Eh? Why’s that?”

    “Because we’re up against demons, dark gods, and a self-proclaimed king of such,” Frid answered, his smirk gradually widening to bare teeth. “And if, going by the Rule of Funny, we really need a dark-haired, crimson-eyed girl with a propensity for bombastic introductions and overkill in our party . . .”

    Ahhh,” Shirou nodded in perfect understanding—and then blinked. “So, why haven’t you summoned her yet, exactly?”

    Frid’s eyebrows shot up, and he sounded affronted. “What—and ruin her opportunity for a suitably dramatic ENTRANCE . . .? She’d never forgive me!”








    Avalon Castle, Phantasmagoria Island (Grail Works Ltd. Headquarters)
    Outside the boundaries of time and space









    “Yes, I would!” Nobunaga protested, pouting. At the stares that statement garnered, she pouted harder, and begrudgingly added, “. . . Eventually.

    Still, despite the (accurate) aspersion on her character, the crimson-clad Archer leaned back with a self-satisfied smirk on her lips. Such a devoted retainer, she had—he knew her so very well . . . And a chance to battle against gods, demons, and a self-proclaimed king of such—with opportunities to gather new resources to conquer Japan, and full leeway to be as crazy as she wanted to be—sounded like a great deal of fun, indeed.

    “Truly,” she murmured to the image of her erstwhile Master, “you are my greatest follower—such wonderful gifts you give me . . .”

    A manic grin grew on her face. Turning to the others, she barked, “Find me those notebooks! If he’s expecting me to make a grand entrance at an appropriately dramatic point, well then—it can’t be helped . . .!
    Last edited by Kieran; December 6th, 2020 at 07:12 PM.
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

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    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

  13. #6773
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    That... is not who I was expecting. Excellent hinting, I had no idea until the reveal, even with the visual description. I was half-thinking Fujino or something.
    Nobu's rationality displayed from her perspective is fascinating, and the explanation that the fear everyone else in the Works seems to regard her with is deliberately cultivated is hilarious. No wonder she's taken Frid as her retainer.

    Godafrid giving us some useful exposition about the setting and his planning, which is a lot of fun. Seeing a summary of what he knows and expects gives us a better guess at what things might blind-side him. Right now, he's in a fairly low-information state because he's not Kazuma, and expects things to not line up exactly, which should result in interesting improvisation. Sometimes this results in improving his situation, sometimes it makes things worse, and sometimes everything behaves the same and he curses how the world insists on running on a fixed plot. Any of these is amusing, though.

    I have an odd feeling like the mention of Iris might be invoking some of Godafrid's purviews.

    Nobu's presumably going to OBLITERATE that poor Dullahan at some point. There's no early-story enemy more amusingly defeated by Three Line Formation. She's also really interesting because one of her strengths is innovation, and i.e. Vanir shows that this is a viable thing to do in the Konosuba world.
    I'm not sure if I should expect a melee fighter to join the party. Mitsurugi seems like a potentially amusing addition, though he already has his own party. He does tend to be the butt of jokes, though. Chris is also potentially interesting, if we want to have some weird parallels. I'm not sure exactly what gaps this party has, but they don't have a thief or direct front-line, though they're all fairly agile, and Necromancy might help with the lack of front-line.

  14. #6774
    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    That... is not who I was expecting.
    I realise she doesn't fit the "La-" clue from Anarchy, but I've been looking at Nobu and Okita lately as potential partners; and the statements in this snippet series specifically made Nobu the better fit. Not to mention for KonoSuba itself . . .


    Excellent hinting, I had no idea until the reveal, even with the visual description. I was half-thinking Fujino or something.
    Well, thank you - I didn't think I was that good.


    Nobu's rationality displayed from her perspective is fascinating, and the explanation that the fear everyone else in the Works seems to regard her with is deliberately cultivated is hilarious.
    Everything I've discovered about Nobu in the Fate universe (including videos of her My Room dialogue) implies that the ham act is at least partially an act; as in life, she does it to throw people off . . . And because it's fun, of course. (Which, in honesty, fits Godafrid/me very well, I think.)

    In this specific case, as I said, it's partly because she is Oda Nobunaga, and the temper is very real (she wasn't joking about the "destroying" part - Aqua, should they ever cross paths, is in for a VERY bad day). But on a more personal level, she's trying to get one of the girls to get a move on Shirou. It annoys her to see women of Japan so timid in going after what they want - particularly when they're clearly capable of more . . . So around Shirou, she plays up being a wanton femme fatale, similar to Medousa in a more aggressive mood, to try and prod them in the sense of "If you're not going to take him, I will - so, what are you going to do about it . . .?"

    In other words, she's something of a "Shipper on Deck," to use TVTropes terminology, but not specifically attached to any one candidate. This could, I expect, lead to some hilarious stories as she attempts to be "helpful."


    No wonder she's taken Frid as her retainer.
    As I said, I thought it'd be a good (or at least interesting) match . . .


    And also as I said, Okita was also considered; story-wise, she might even be a more interesting match. She's a Saber, yes, but very fragile for her class - by no means an instant "I Win" button for Frid in most situations. Still, she's very good at what she does, she's active and cheerful (which Frid is very much not), and unlike Nobu, I could see her actually having a job (which would explain the "not getting much time together"). And from a storytelling perspective . . .

    If Frid stays as a Lunar, he could easily learn to play defence to Okita or Nobu's offense; but the simple fact that his Caste is built for infiltration and magic makes him a counterpoint to the pair that fills in gaps in their toolkits (as opposed to a Caster or Assassin Servant, or Nero's Imperial Privilege). Likewise, either of them is a worthy candidate for a Solar Exaltation, and looking for a way to get one in Okita's case (as the Second Breath restores the newly-Exalted to perfect health) would make for a good long-term plot - or finding a way to get her to go Alter, or another means of cracking that "Weak Constitution" problem.

    (Granted, Nobu would also qualify for Solar Exaltation, but she'd fit a lot less well, given her Anti-Divine leanings - though maybe as an Infernal . . .?)

    Okita herself also introduces a variable that might allow bringing in the Lord El-Melloi II Case Files characters, for those who want to use them - she's a Saberface who has no canon reason for it. If Gray's appearance has changed in response to Arturia's presence, what happens to her when there's another one the World can't explain? Would she start reverting, perhaps . . .?



    . . . And in a personal and romantic sense (because of course I'll go there ) . . . Nobu would be the easier match, because she's more open to Western things, and in no way afraid to pursue what she wants - her Final Ascension dialogue (and artwork!) make that perfectly clear. Okita, on the other hand, is very Japanese (which Frid is not), which would certainly lead to some culture clashes, though her "business" mindset versus her cheerful self could make for some interesting parallels between that and a Lunar's instincts . . . As for romance, she's very inexperienced - even assuming Frid's her type, watching them fumble around each other might be fun, but it'd be a very slow burn, if it happened at all. I could see the pair of them bonding over ice cream, though.



    Godafrid giving us some useful exposition about the setting and his planning, which is a lot of fun. Seeing a summary of what he knows and expects gives us a better guess at what things might blind-side him.
    Quite so, as I'm rereading what I have of the series (and getting a few surprises I'd forgotten), but he can't - nor does he have a supernaturally-enhanced memory, in this state.


    Right now, he's in a fairly low-information state because he's not Kazuma, and expects things to not line up exactly, which should result in interesting improvisation. Sometimes this results in improving his situation, sometimes it makes things worse, and sometimes everything behaves the same and he curses how the world insists on running on a fixed plot. Any of these is amusing, though.
    And possible.


    I have an odd feeling like the mention of Iris might be invoking some of Godafrid's purviews.
    Which is not something that had actually occurred to me - but you're right . . . Even funnier in that Iris is very much a Saberface/expy, too.



    Nobu's presumably going to OBLITERATE that poor Dullahan at some point. There's no early-story enemy more amusingly defeated by Three Line Formation. She's also really interesting because one of her strengths is innovation, and i.e. Vanir shows that this is a viable thing to do in the Konosuba world.
    *Nods* Which is why I ultimately went with her over Okita - though the latter might be interesting to see, too.


    I'm not sure if I should expect a melee fighter to join the party. Mitsurugi seems like a potentially amusing addition, though he already has his own party.
    None of whom are either standouts or come across as especially nice . . .


    He does tend to be the butt of jokes, though.
    And we already have Frid for that.


    Chris is also potentially interesting, if we want to have some weird parallels.
    Believe me, I've thought about it . . .


    I'm not sure exactly what gaps this party has, but they don't have a thief or direct front-line, though they're all fairly agile, and Necromancy might help with the lack of front-line.
    At the moment, Frid is registered as a Thief (though I may change that if this becomes a genuine story) - his general build plus the Stillness Key lends too heavily to that, though apparently Assassin shows up as a class in the last volume . . .

    They are fairly unbalanced, though; lacking a melee- or magic-type, doing major amounts of damage (unless Shirou hauls out the Noble/Broken Phantasms) is really not an option, and they're agile, yes, but neither of them is really built to take a hit. And with no meat-shield on hand to do so or priest-type class for healing, anybody who manages to land one (which, in a battle of attrition, is almost inevitable) is poised to do some serious harm. And in the event someone actually manages to kill one of them, well - Aqua's not on hand to bully Eris into "making exceptions" to the rules . . .

    . . . Granted, with a Sin-Eater build, Godafrid can't actually be killed - but relying on that is a terrible idea . . .
    Last edited by Kieran; December 7th, 2020 at 11:18 AM.
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

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    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

  15. #6775
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kieran View Post
    Well, thank you - I didn't think I was that good.
    I mean, it had been kept deliberately ambiguous in prior snippets, I just enjoy the delayed reveal from the first section, where you think there SHOULD be enough information to know, but you don't actually give a name.

    Everything I've discovered about Nobu in the Fate universe (including videos of her My Room dialogue) implies that the ham act is at least partially an act; as in life, she does it to throw people off . . . And because it's fun, of course. (Which, in honesty, fits Godafrid/me very well, I think.)
    I mean, she's from a comedy-focused event, which probably has some impact on how she's written. She's more likely to lean on the fourth wall and be genre-savvy because of that, but it's still a displayed character trait.

    Likewise, either of them is a worthy candidate for a Solar Exaltation, and looking for a way to get one in Okita's case (as the Second Breath restores the newly-Exalted to perfect health) would make for a good long-term plot - or finding a way to get her to go Alter, or another means of cracking that "Weak Constitution" problem.
    Swordsman would fit their party, admittedly. Exaltations for Servants feels a bit hard to justify to me, and conceptually messy. Alter or other Spirit Origin changes are a close analogue, though.

    Okita herself also introduces a variable that might allow bringing in the Lord El-Melloi II Case Files characters, for those who want to use them - she's a Saberface who has no canon reason for it. If Gray's appearance has changed in response to Arturia's presence, what happens to her when there's another one the World can't explain? Would she start reverting, perhaps . . .?
    I haven't read enough of the later Case Files to see the justification for why she changes when Arturia is summoned, but I feel like just "another Saberface exists" shouldn't have a huge effect, because she's magically imprinted to specifically Arturia. I would not expect Jeanne, Mordred, or Nero to have much effect either.
    Also, we already have an Arturia AND Erik has Mordred AND MHX AND Laeticia AND Nero in a sword, I feel like we're covered for Saberface variety without Okita. On the other hand, Okita and Gray are the only missing Saberfaces, so maybe having Okita will force Gray to appear to complete the set.

    Believe me, I've thought about it . . .
    I suspected that was the case. She's still a potential encounter.

    At the moment, Frid is registered as a Thief (though I may change that if this becomes a genuine story) - his general build plus the Stillness Key lends too heavily to that, though apparently Assassin shows up as a class in the last volume . . .
    Ahhh, okay. That makes sense, then.

    They are fairly unbalanced, though; lacking a melee- or magic-type, doing major amounts of damage (unless Shirou hauls out the Noble/Broken Phantasms) is really not an option, and they're agile, yes, but neither of them is really built to take a hit. And with no meat-shield on hand to do so or priest-type class for healing, anybody who manages to land one (which, in a battle of attrition, is almost inevitable) is poised to do some serious harm.
    Yeah, Darkness has never seemed more useful. I think they can rely on Nobu for major damage sometimes, whenever she shows up, but her advantages are EXTREMELY conditional, so in many fights she'll be no better than the rest of them.

    . . . Granted, with a Sin-Eater build, Godafrid can't actually be killed - but relying on that is a terrible idea . . .
    I don't know what the penalties are for relying on that, but they sound bad. Might be enough to bully Eris, though.

  16. #6776
    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    I mean, it had been kept deliberately ambiguous in prior snippets, I just enjoy the delayed reveal from the first section, where you think there SHOULD be enough information to know, but you don't actually give a name.
    Well, again, thank you.


    I mean, she's from a comedy-focused event, which probably has some impact on how she's written. She's more likely to lean on the fourth wall and be genre-savvy because of that, but it's still a displayed character trait.
    Yes, it is - and with Type/redline now an extant work, she has a more serious interpretation, as well - so it gives me a lot of leeway in her writing. I do find it kind of amusing that, in a sense, Nobu's "fourth-wall awareness" is an interesting counterpoint to Frid's meta-knowledge.


    Swordsman would fit their party, admittedly. Exaltations for Servants feels a bit hard to justify to me, and conceptually messy.
    *Nods* Which is why it's a long-term, multi-story goal . . . To be clear, though: for Okita, at least, the goal would be to return her to actual life, and then the Exaltation as a stand-in for her Servant nature. In a way, she's ideal for it, as all she does as a Saber is purely down to skill; no magic, no otherworldly heritage or all-powerful weapons, just pure refinement - which is exactly what the Solar Exalted do.


    Alter or other Spirit Origin changes are a close analogue, though.
    Indeed - and not exactly easy to engineer, A), as they aren't Chaldea, and capable of tinkering with Servants willy-nilly; and B), Okita Alter in and of herself is not what is typically thought of when referring to the Alter subtype of Servants.


    I haven't read enough of the later Case Files to see the justification for why she changes when Arturia is summoned, but I feel like just "another Saberface exists" shouldn't have a huge effect, because she's magically imprinted to specifically Arturia. I would not expect Jeanne, Mordred, or Nero to have much effect either.
    I've heard the following:

    Case Files spoilers
    Gray's face initially changed when Arturia was summoned in the Fourth War; a response to the presence of the spirit she was meant to be a vessel for. And when Arturia is summoned again for the Fifth War, at the end of the Case Files series, Gray's hair apparently goes blonde.


    As for the others, none of them have been present in the Works' timeline (yet), and Okita is the only one whose nature as a Saberface remains unexplained (beyond "the artist just likes to draw Arturia"). All the others are either related (Mordred/offspring, XX/parallel universe analogue), or share some attributes of her legend (Nero, Jeanne). Okita fits neither of those categories.

    Which, as I said, has me wondering if the workings on Gray might become confused enough to let her revert somewhat - she would certainly appreciate it, and one could be sure that Lord El-Melloi II would investigate . . .

    *Shrugs* It was an idea I had for a way to draw in those characters, if somebody wanted to.



    Also, we already have an Arturia AND Erik has Mordred AND MHX AND Laeticia AND Nero in a sword, I feel like we're covered for Saberface variety without Okita. On the other hand, Okita and Gray are the only missing Saberfaces, so maybe having Okita will force Gray to appear to complete the set.
    At least, without getting into the Alters, Castoria, etc. Point taken, though I would point out that in any case, this story would take place far in the future of the current one.


    I suspected that was the case. She's still a potential encounter.
    Of course! She's too good (and important) a character to pass up!


    Ahhh, okay. That makes sense, then.
    How he got out of the Guild without getting into a fight, I'll leave to your imagination - for now, anyway.


    Yeah, Darkness has never seemed more useful.
    Yeah - she's just likely several weeks away from showing up . . .


    I think they can rely on Nobu for major damage sometimes, whenever she shows up, but her advantages are EXTREMELY conditional, so in many fights she'll be no better than the rest of them.
    Depending on how Servant stats scale to the KonoSuba system, anyway. Obviously, they can - Aqua is a literal goddess, and an anime one at that, and she's representable, after all. Even as a Level 1 character (which is insane, for multiple reasons) - so if they can encompass that, the Grail War's Servant system should certainly be representable.


    I don't know what the penalties are for relying on that, but they sound bad.
    Essentially, the geist uses its nature as an elemental incarnation of death to rewrite the Bound's fate, so that someone else dies in their place. Who and how are completely random, but the Bound is made to experience it as if it happened to them. This act is a sin against Synergy (the balance between human and geist/life and death that acts as their morality and sanity scale) that permanently burns two points - and if it ever drops to zero, the Bound collapses into a gibbering lunatic that's basically a puppet for their geist.

    . . . Effectively, the lesson is, "No, you can't be killed, more or less - try not to be anyway."


    Might be enough to bully Eris, though.
    Depends on how compassionate she's feeling - after all, she's not fond of the whole concept of undead . . . But it's not like destroying Red would be any better for Frid, either.
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

    — Carmilla Theme




    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

  17. #6777
    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    . . . I'm sorry, I'm afraid there's no update this week - I've been dithering between ideas, and RB and I are still discussing where to take Anarchy as I continue looking into to trying to get my original laptop's hard drive salvaged (no luck yet, and with the COVID restrictions increasing this week on top of getting closer to Christmas, I'm not holding out much hope it'll be a quick process).

    It's not the first time I've missed a deadline, but it's the first time I've done it just out of, for lack of a better term listlessness - and I'm sorry. Hopefully, I'll have a better idea of what I want to do soon . . .

    In the meantime, I'm open to requests and/or suggestions.
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

    — Carmilla Theme




    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

  18. #6778
    吸血鬼 Vampire
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    I didn't realize you have "deadlines", I just check in every other day or so. If you're feeling out of it, feel free to do whatever you think is good for you, I know a lot of people get Seasonal Affective Disorder around this time of year, which can be fairly debilitating.

    Were I to request something, I'd love to see a fluffy Christmas Trinity Angle. We have had a couple of them before. Then again, I'm a sucker for nostalgia, and don't actually have many good suggestions for what it would be ABOUT, perhaps something with some of the adults? (i.e. post-dinner retrospective over drinks, Sirius/Aoko antics, or something else)
    If that doesn't pique your interest though, I'm not bothered, do what's good for you.

  19. #6779
    Jester of the Moon Cell's Sovereign Kieran's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arbitrarity View Post
    I didn't realize you have "deadlines", I just check in every other day or so.
    I try to have something written once a week - a chapter, a snippet, but something. It's self-imposed, true, but I'm lazy; if I don't hold myself to it, I'll let things slide . . . And I'm pretty sure that added at least a year to the time it took to finish Trinity.


    If you're feeling out of it, feel free to do whatever you think is good for you, I know a lot of people get Seasonal Affective Disorder around this time of year, which can be fairly debilitating.
    It could be that, I suppose - or a midlife crisis.



    Were I to request something, I'd love to see a fluffy Christmas Trinity Angle. We have had a couple of them before. Then again, I'm a sucker for nostalgia, and don't actually have many good suggestions for what it would be ABOUT, perhaps something with some of the adults? (i.e. post-dinner retrospective over drinks, Sirius/Aoko antics, or something else)
    If that doesn't pique your interest though, I'm not bothered, do what's good for you.
    I will certainly put some thought into the idea, because I do like both nostalgia and holiday fluff. At the very least, I'll aim to have something for Christmas - or New Year's, perhaps? Haven't done that holiday yet . . .
    “Love will be cruel to who it entices — love will have its sacrifices.”

    — Carmilla Theme




    "Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as Evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against Stupid. That might actually make a difference."

    ―Jim Butcher, Vignette

  20. #6780
    死徒 Dead Apostle RanmaBushiko's Avatar
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    Chapter 7: A Slow Awakening



    Mordred muses, sitting on Wolfen’s head, while watching the stars quietly. Wolfen lies wrapped in blankets, sitting up. Then she glances over, to look at Hoppou entering the room. “Glad we put in some aquariums, Hoppou? Sorry for a bunch of the glass being damaged like that. Thankfully the crew’s lasers could heat the glass up and repair it.”

    “It’s fine! It makes things more pretty for the children to look at, anyways!” Hoppou replies with a smile. Then she sits down beside Wolfen, looking at Mordred. “Slow going on the repairs?”

    “I’m taking a break from studying the engineering the Legion of Coal is having me learn.” Mordred admits. “It’s fascinating, and I’m sure Erik is teaching the other me, but it’s slow.”

    Hoppou nods, quietly. “The armor plating didn’t work out, I noticed.”

    “No, and Kongou messaged me, mentioning that the upgrades Wolfen had designed and built for her made some sort of screen pop up in front of her, asking her if she wanted to change her faction to Wolfen’s, so she could equip and use them.” Mordred admits. “So relying on yours might be problematic, unless it’s only your own crew.”

    “They don’t seem as… lifelike as you and yours, are, though.” Hoppou frowns. “Adding in that Hoppou’s crew is all children, and it’s just slow going.”

    Mordred quietly nods. “Ayako’s offered to help, too. But some of her crew worry me, some days. Nothing against her… but something about some of them leaves me feeling like they want to do things to me.”

    Hoppou nods quietly. “You can only imagine what it’s like for us to be crewed by people like that. It feels nasty, and disgusting.” Hoppou eventually admits. “Personally, Hoppou might be able to steer it for myself and others, towards children alone, due to some of the abilities I gained? Saki, Ayako and Misato all chose differently, however.”

    Mordred nods, closing her eyes for a moment. “Yeah, I get that. I’m guessing you did something to gain them?”

    “A lot of us fought to earn abilities, to counter the Shipgirls within our eternal war in the afterlife. But they came at the cost of losing crew more easily.” Hoppou admits, quietly. “We didn’t realize the real catch until Poseidon gloated about how we’d only dug ourselves deeper into failure.”

    Mordred winces, and nods, sighing. “I get it. He sounds more and more like my mother, all the time…” Mordred trails off, with a frown. “Or Merlin, that bastard.”

    “Bad memories, then?” Hoppou asks, carefully.

    Mordred’s response is only a nod, before she sighs.

    A small beeping interrupts them, before Mordred stretches. “That should be Kongou, replying to the most recent email. She’s been taking some political heat, to ensure that your group doesn’t get revealed or raided, right now.”

    Hoppou blinks. “She’s a shipgirl. Why would she do that?!

    “She’s a nice girl, all polite British hospitality and everything, along with Japanese manners. Means she’ll be polite as possible, up until she’s forced to fight.” Mordred admits, then sighs. “That, and she doesn’t remember what happened at all, yet.”

    Hoppou blinks, then winces. “Leaving her at square one for knowing what to do?”

    Mordred nods, climbing in, as she replies. “Yeah, exactly. She’s lost, confused, clinging onto the Admiral that somehow summoned her, literally.”

    “Huh. Hoppou didn’t realize that they were having such issues. Perhaps if she was willing to leave her guns disarmed when showing up, we could chat?” Hoppou muses, quietly. “I’d have to talk with the others, they’re a lot more wary than I am.”

    “She’s apparently offered to bring tea to help Wolfen recuperate, and introduce you to both tea and baking.” Mordred admits, while looking over the email.

    “Tea and baking? What’s tea?” Hoppou asks.

    “It’s a bitter drink, made of specific, hard to grow leaves that only grow in certain countries. It helps people wake up, and the British love it.” Mordred admits. “Kinda tasty if prepared right, or if you have something tasty to eat along with it. It’s also warm, which might help against the cold up here.”

    Hoppou nods, thinking. “Our engines tend to deal with the heat, more than we need that wood stove already, but something like that might help.” Hoppou rubs her chin, thinking, then looks down at her Zero plane in her arms, quietly. “Hoppou will talk with them, but no guarantees, okay?”

    “Yup. No worries.” Mordred admits. “Though if you’re going to have her disarm, you’ll have to make sure she has a guard force to ensure she doesn’t get hurt by other Abyssals!”

    Hoppou nods, while leaving the room.

    “Dear Mordred,

    I’m glad to hear your crew is repaired enough that your emergency drilling for resource methods are working! Though, it sounds rough up there. Still, another week or two before she wakes up is wonderful news! I’m glad that your crew is finally working out how to work with shipgirls, not just ships.

    Down here, things are getting more political. That Admiral, Richardson, has been harassing Missouri to try and harass me into admitting where you and Wolfen are holed up, insisting on ‘rescuing’ you two. He’s also been burning favors left and right, trying to get the Japanese Government to put pressure on Teitoku to ensure you’re found. By Americans, of course.

    We’ve stonewalled them so far, but I’ll be meeting the Emperor tomorrow over it.

    Do you mind if I go up to meet you, when Wolfen is about ready to wake up? Do you think the Abyssals would mind? Teitoku would gladly send me up, to ensure I get out of the political line of fire. I could bring wasabi with me, to help refuel Wolfen, too!

    Sincerely, Kongou”

    After a bit, Misato comes in, looking thoughtful. “Mordred, you say that Kongou would be interested in visiting?”

    Mordred comes out, nodding. “Looks like it. She’s been covering for us down in Japan, keeping the Americans from knowing where we’re all at. Plus, Wolfen likes her.”

    Misato slowly nods, thinking. “We’re a little miffed about Wolfen’s bluff with the glowing red hand, I’ll admit, but considering what Wolfen went through to save Hoppou, we’ve mostly forgiven her for it. As for this Kongou, do you think she’d be willing to disarm for us?”

    “So long as you send an escort, keep her weapons safe, and ensure she’s completely safe while meeting her at some point in the middle? Certainly.” Mordred admits. “That’s the feeling I get off her, anyways. Of course, considering you all overpower her, as far as I can tell?”

    Misato thinks, pondering things. “Us, as in Princesses, right?”

    Mordred nods, quietly.

    “I’ll vote yes on it, then. Have her head to Midway, to meet up with Ayako and Saki, they’ll escort her up here.” Misato states, with a smile. “It’ll let us get our fleets used to a shipgirl that won’t be hostile, anyways.”

    Mordred nods, a smile on her face. Then she enters, to write her reply.

    “Hey, Kongou! Mordred here once more with a reply for you!

    They’re willing to meet up with you at Midway, and take you to the location we’re at, escort and all, if you’re willing to be disarmed once you get to Midway. I got Misato to agree to a decent escort, not taking your weapons off until you’re there, with them keeping you and your weapons safe.

    Keep in mind, they’re paranoid of you. Deathly so. They also admitted some pretty horrifying stuff to me, earlier, in secret. Not sure if they’ll talk with you about it, though. Still, if you manage to pull this off, we’ll have a pretty big advantage of them meeting you, and realizing not all shipgirls might be the enemy!

    Also, good job in handling that ‘Dess!’ verbal tick of yours. If you said it much more, I would’ve nicknamed you ‘Dess Boat’ or something along those lines, you know?

    Good luck with the Emperor, and if you need to admit anything, admit that Wolfen’s working on an assignment unique to her, trying to convince four Abyssal Princesses to be friendly to humanity. Warn him that if the Americans stick their nose into it, they’ll likely shoot first, and listen after the Abyssals in question are dead. Also, if you absolutely have to, let him know that there’s only three people on our side alive that know where they are. One of them is you, one of them is me, and both of us don’t trust the politicians that are trying to screw your Admiral over.

    Sincerely, Captain Mordred Pendragon”

    With a press of the key, Mordred sends the letter, before moving down to help with the work on Wolfen’s superstructure, clarent by her side.




    The next day




    Kongou looks down, as she kneels before Emperor Akahito once more, bowing deep, before raising her head to look at her Emperor.

    “You have insisted on talking with me alone about things. As our battleship, we acknowledge you, Kongou. So tell me, why are you ignoring orders to give away the position of one ‘PAB Wolfen’?” The Emperor asks, carefully studying the Shipgirl before him.

    “She’s the only one that has access to Abyssals, your Majesty.” Kongou admits, quietly. “She’s been a valuable asset, going behind enemy lines in order to try and turn a group to humanity’s side.”

    The Emperor of Japan pauses, settling back into his throne as he thinks. “Then why not crow it to the heavens?”

    “The Americans wish to strip her of her unique weapons, or make her build them for their forces alone. If we give away her position to them, they’ll use it to steal her away, and harm her. USS Missouri might be questioning her orders, but the others, I fear, might not.” Kongou admits, frowning. “Their eagerness to acquire her services are troubling. I fear she’s meant to be a political tool, one pulled out only to show how strong America is.”

    The Emperor frowns, folding his arms as he thinks. “There is more to things than what you’re telling me, isn’t there?”

    “The Americans insisted, when we first saw her, that she either work for her and be disarmed after the war, or be destroyed, irregardless of her maker being an American, and her maker’s wife being Japanese.” Kongou admits. “Her story is… astonishing, but has so far checked out.”

    The Emperor settles back, thinking. “You aren’t telling me everything, why?”

    “Begging your pardon for being blunt, but after what happened the second to last time I was involved with politics, my Teitoku was nearly assassinated. The next time, I had to ask you if you wished for me to commit seppuku alongside my Teitoku, for you to realize that I wasn’t budging on loving him. I do not trust politics, or politicians, your Majesty. You, I trust, my Teitoku, I trust. The bulk of that military base, I also trust.” Kongou pauses, breathing out. “The rest of the politicians in Japan? I’m not so sure about that. America? I can’t tell, with how bad things have gotten over there from what little I’ve seen.”

    The Emperor slowly nods, rubbing his chin, as he thinks. Then pauses, frowning, before putting his arms down. “I recall yanking out my chin hairs if I did that too long, when I was younger.” he murmurs, quietly. Then he looks up to Kongou, pointedly. “What else can you tell me about things?”

    “She remembers being the Kami of her ship, before a part went through a dimensional portal, and landed her here.” Kongou admits, quietly. “She’s also the only shipgirl that Abyssals won’t attack on sight, and is trying to convince the most dangerous group in the Pacific to side with humanity, or at least let convoys go through. Either for a tithe, or with trade.”

    Silence reigns, as the Emperor of Japan studies Kongou with wide, surprised eyes. Then he starts to smile. “So, Shinto is true then?”

    Kongou nods with a smile. “She apparently had tea parties with the other magnificent inventions her father made, and her father’s wife, who she considers to be truly her mother. She loves them both as parents, even if her mother was the only one to hear her.”

    A slow nod results from the Emperor, as he thinks. “You’re not saying everything, still.”

    “I’m not sure if those politicians have the palace bugged, your Majesty. And with how they’ve been desperate to get a shipgirl summoned for their own agenda, if we’ve even missed one being summoned by them, they could have set up shipgirl equipment to ensure we didn’t catch them spying on you.” Kongou admits. “Wolfen has the tools to deal with such things. I, on the other hand, do not.”

    The Emperor frowns, then sighs softly. “Fair. Anything else you can tell me?”

    “That Tamamo no Mae truly existed, at least in her home universe, as did Amaterasu-Sama.” Kongou smiles, to the befuddled look on the Emperor’s face. “She has yet to determine if they exist here, still, but she’s planning on looking into it, once we can get Abyssals out of the Pacific, as well as possible.”

    Then he smiles, a quiet true smile, directly from the heart. “So her plans are for the Pacific to be cleared of all but the one group willing to trade, or claim taxes?”

    Kongou nods, a smile on her face.

    “Very well, then. I’ll ensure the politicians stop harassing you about it for a month or two.” The Emperor finally admits, with a sigh. “Just try to lay low and not irritate them too much, okay? Their reaction to you not being merely a ship to be ordered around, but a woman in your own right, has been aggravating with all the meetings I’ve been to. I only finished all the meetings involving your little stunt in the last meeting, last night.” He pauses, then sighs. “I’ll admit, I’m getting old. All this stress isn’t good for me. I may have to push Naruhito’s ascension to my throne faster than I’d originally planned.”

    Kongou nods. “The fact that we got Naka and Ooyodo might help. Naka wound up watching some Idol anime, and got hooked on it, and Ooyodo plans on helping Teitoku with secretarial work. It’ll let me work in his office, out of sight and mind. As for the stress, perhaps getting a massage, your Majesty? Or a hot spring trip?”

    The Emperor nods. “Dismissed, then. However, when Wolfen comes to Japan, I wish to meet with her. Also, thank you for the advice.”

    Kongou bows again, before leaving.

    3 hours later

    “Naka? What are you doing?” Kongou asks, blinking.

    “Becoming an Idol of the fleet! If I sing songs, and do music, it’ll cheer everyone up!” Naka smiles.

    “Try making videos on youtube, then? It’ll help a lot, Dess!” Kongou asks, a bemused look on her face.

    Naka smiles, the smile of a woman who’s found a true passion in life. “That sounds wonderful!” Naka admits, with a sigh.

    “Just keep in mind, to watch youtube videos first. On how to act, how to pose, how to record yourself, and other similar things. I’m sure we have people on base that know how to work a video camera, and they might help if you ask nicely.” Kongou admits, with a smile.

    Naka nods, before rushing off. Then she moves back, bows before Kongou, with a loud “Thank you!” before rushing off again.

    Kongou simply smiles, humming as she moves to meet with her Teitoku, before stretching out.

    Then she enters the office building at a run. “TEI-TOU-KU!” The smug looks on the soldiers she’s passing by leave her grinning widely.

    Rounding the door’s entrance, she leaps over Ooyodo, flips forwards with a shout of “BURNING LOVE!”, then lands on her Teitoku’s lap, kissing his face repeatedly and hugging him.

    The flabbergasted expression on Ooyodo’s face is ignored, for her kissing Teitoku repeatedly. Finally a muffled “GET OFF!” reaches her ears, before she pulls back to let her Teitoku have air.

    “What did I say about public affection, Kongou?” Admiral Kouzuki asks, grumbling under his breath.

    “That it happens when we’re not out in public, of course!” Kongou replies with a grin.

    “The meeting went well, then?” Admiral Kozuki asks, with a sigh.

    “Yes sir! I mentioned just enough to keep Wolfen and ourselves out of trouble for a couple of months.” Kongou nods with a smile.

    “Good to hear. Kongou, I’d like you to train Ooyodo in what you do for me for the rest of the day, since I’m approving your plans to deliver tea to Wolfen.” Admiral Kouzuki admits, a smile on his face at Kongou’s wide eyes. “Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to meet with Wolfen, ascertain if she’s being held hostage, or is truly friends with the group she’s trying to turn to humanity’s side of things.”

    OF COURSE, DESS!” Kongou shouts with glee. “I won’t let you down, my Teitoku!”

    “Good, because this will be done alone. Do you think you can handle going without an escort there?”

    Kongou nods, saluting. Then she turns to Ooyodo. “Time to teach you the ropes, newbie! Just understand that I’m dating Teitoku right now. No getting ideas of stealing him, understand?”

    Ooyodo quietly blinks, before smiling widely. “I would never do that! I never got to properly lead back then, so helping with the back side of things is where I can truly shine!”

    “I’d treat you to tea and scones, but I’ve got to ensure I’m on my way to a certain classified place sooner rather than later.” Kongou admits. “The pros and cons of being a cute shipgirl. We never have enough time.”

    Ooyodo simply nods, as Kongou drags her off to show her the ins and outs of office paperwork.




    12 days later




    Wolfen blinks, as slowly, reality comes back to her eyes. Slowly, she looks around, fully awake and cognizant of her surroundings for the first time in a long while. A smile crosses her face, before she sighs, smiling. Then she looks for a way out of the blankets, springs in the mattress adjusting as she does so.

    “Sounds like she’s up, Dess!” Wolfen blinks at the familiar voice nearby.

    You were out for over a month, Wolfen. We’re going to have to work on that trick, and move it to an angle. We might lose speed doing that, but it’ll keep us from destroying half our decks. Again.” Mordred’s voice reaches her, sounding tired. “Kongou showed up, and agreed to be disarmed for the duration of her stay. She’s a little iffy about it, but they’ve kept to their promise so far.

    “Wolfen!” Kongou smiles as she opens the door, to see an awake Wolfen, blinking at her. “You’re up!” With those words, she pulls Wolfen into a hug.

    Quietly, Wolfen tries to hug back, only to frown at her arms not moving much.

    “I’m wrapped up like a blanket mummy.” Wolfen quietly mutters.

    “You had to stay warm, with how bad you were damaged, Dess!” Kongou retorts, frowning at Wolfen. “You had 5 of your six decks crushed, Wolfen!

    Wolfen flinches, nodding. “My screw up, I’ll admit. I should have come at an angle against their fire, not straight down, to kill that Princess threatening Hoppou.”

    Another body landing on her is the only sign of Hoppou’s entrance, as Hoppou hugs Wolfen tight. “Yay, Wolfen’s awake! Hoppou missed you and wanted to thank you!”

    “Help get the blankets off, please?” Wolfen asks.

    A giggling pair of girls slowly unwrap Wolfen, before a smiling Misato sticks her head in. “Glad to see you’re alive after you nearly died saving Hoppou, there.” For a moment, her smile fades a bit as she looks at Kongou. “Gotta admit, you weren’t wrong about Kongou, as much as I thought it would be otherwise.”

    Wolfen quietly nods. “Kongou’s nice, isn’t she?”

    “Even if she has an obsession with the word ‘Dess!’ sometimes?” Mordred pipes in, arms folded, as she sticks her head out of Wolfen’s body.

    Kongou pouts at Mordred. “Don’t be so mean, Mordred! Consider how much I’ve helped you out!”

    Mordred grins and waves. “With the bulk of the repairs all but done, I’m getting some sleep. Thanks to you and Ayako, Kongou, for the help with the engineers, and keeping Ayako’s bunch in line. I don’t care about their attempts to steal Wolfen so much, they don’t have the technical skill to figure out that most systems are password protected. But it still grew annoying.”

    Kongou nods with a smile. Then frowns, before rushing off. “Gotta save the scones in the oven~!”

    The sound of drills erupts in the room, as two small drills pop up out of the ground, before small Legion of Coal units lead wheelbarrows full of ore towards Wolfen’s location. Wolfen quietly blinks at that, then smiles widely. “I’d forgotten I had those two driller units…”

    “They’re good for getting us basic resources!” Hoppou admits, a wide smile on her face. “Hoppou has been using them to get ideas on how to help you!”

    Then Hoppou frowns. “Unfortunately, with you not being part of my faction, we can’t actually build you better armor.”

    Wolfen nods, then winces quietly, at the sound of her hull subtly moving. “Oh, that doesn’t sound good.” She admits, a wince on her face.

    “Unfortunately, that gets us to the problems with your rebuild. Unfortunately, your keel that was built by someone else isn’t fully linking to the rest of your hull. It’s safe, but you don’t have full strength until we can find a way to repair that problem or issue.” Hoppou admits, with a pout. “It’s odd. No matter how much Hoppou looks, it’s impossible to fix!”

    Wolfen gently leans forwards, kissing Hoppou’s forehead. “It’s okay, Hoppou. You tried your very best, I’m sure!”

    Hoppou nods, her frown staying, before pulling Wolfen close for a hug.

    “Now, if you could stop keeping me wrapped up in all these blankets, maybe I could hug you back?” Wolfen wryly questions Hoppou, with a smile on her face.

    “Oh! Sorry!” Moments later, Hoppou is unwrapping Wolfen from the blankets.

    After a bit, Wolfen looks down, before slowly moving, testing her body. Her arms work, but her spine has issues with bending. Then, after a bit, she finally frowns.

    “My spinal weapons are the only thing keeping half my keel connected to the parts that Daddy made… damn it.” With a sigh, Wolfen rubs her forehead.

    Hoppou outright winces at Wolfen’s words, before hugging Wolfen tight while bowing her head. “Hoppou can’t fix it. Sorry.”

    “I can reinforce it for now, but that’s going to limit my close in combat effectiveness until I can fix it.” Wolfen admits. “I’ll have to go on a trip, and see if I can’t find any legendary smiths still around that might be able to pull it off, really.”

    “Would you like me to come with, Wolfen? That sounds interesting.” Kongou asks, as she returns, a plate full of hot scones in her hands.

    “Maybe. Might be better to have you researching the issues, to be fair.” Wolfen admits, sighing.

    “How well are you repaired, anyways? Hoppou is rather curious.” Hoppou asks, quietly thinking.

    “About 80% of me is repaired, but with my keel having issues, I’d say I can’t get fully fixed up until my crew realizes how to work out the differences between me being a ship and a girl.” Wolfen admits. “Or getting more legendary engineers than they are, to finish fixing things up.”

    “Any suggestions?” Hoppou asks, thinking. “Hoppou can’t think of anything right now.”

    “Wasn’t dwarves a part of Norse mythology? Perhaps you might know of where some dwarves could be at?” Kongou asks, settling down.

    Wolfen pauses, thinking. “I haven’t seen any easy portals to the realms where the Gods live, but I’m able to still pass through, I suspect. Though finding them is another thing entirely.” Wolfen trails off, rubbing her forehead. “Might have to start with going from country to country, hunting down places of legend and hoping I get lucky.”

    “Which means if I go with, I’ll be co-opted into helping, rather than helping our resident Abyssals who wish for trade.” Kongou admits, with a sigh. “I’m too visible for that.”

    “Could Hoppou go?” Hoppou asks, quietly.

    Wolfen looks over, studying Hoppou, before motioning Hoppou over. “Get on my back, and we’ll test my cloaking device out.”

    Hoppou is rather quick to jump onto Wolfen’s back, before the cloak engages for a few minutes, leaving them both mostly invisible.

    After a bit, Wolfen nods, releasing the cloak. “It was harder with Aircraft Carrier Demon, but you’re so small, I’m pretty sure I could handle you on my back, Hoppou. I think it’s going to take a few more days to weld both parts of my hull together, using my spinal weapons to hold them from falling apart though, which will leave them likely unusable during our searching.”

    “That’ll be rough, Dess.” Kongou pulls Wolfen in for a hug, gently. “But if you need my help, I’ll be happy to help you out.”

    Wolfen quietly hugs Kongou back, gently, shivering as she does so.

    “There, there, I’m here for you, Wolfen. There, there.” Kongou whispers softly, as she rocks the weakened Wolfen in her arms. “It’s okay. We’ve all got your back, we’ll support and help you, and get you fully repaired.”

    Wolfen quietly nods, cuddling with Kongou, before closing her eyes and resting against Kongou’s side, gently. Soon enough, she’s half dozing.

    “Eat some scones, snuggle, and relax. It’s safe here. The others have been ensuring that most Abyssals can’t attack the convoys to Japan, Wolfen. Both Hoppou and I are going to stay here and keep you personally safe, while they shape up the Pacific.” Kongou’s voice whispers in Wolfen’s ear, before a tasty scone is inserted into Wolfen’s mouth.

    Wolfen munches gently. For a moment, she frowns, before her mind links to the satellite she launched before, as she glances over the world news headlines.

    “Japan and America’s ties grow stronger, as Abyssal attacks lessen dramatically! Canada and Mexico recovering as pacific assaults lessen. Convoys being taxed by an Abyssal group willing to help humanity recover! ‘Saki’ and ‘Ayako’ two Abyssal Princesses with names, helping humanity, while mentioning two other allied Princesses! Will more join in, or will we see them as the only groups to see trade as a better option to war with humanity?


    No word from South America, as the third month of silence continues. Has South America fallen to the Abyssal threat? Or have they simply dug in at higher ground, to wait out the threat of the Abyssals?

    Russia and China growing more disgruntled with each other, as they refuse to return each other’s loaned shipgirls! Is war on the horizon for those two former steadfast allies?

    USS Missouri and Arizona shipped to Eastern front, to help deal with massive surge of Abyssal attacks in the Atlantic Ocean! Day 13 of Abyssal attempts to get to the Whitehouse!

    Europe is still heavily at war with Abyssal Forces, as day 40 of constant assaults upon most European countries continues! Warspite and Bismark are teaming up to slaughter the opposition, but the endless hordes of the Abyssal threat still swarm Europe to devastating effect!

    Africa is still dark, barring Egypt, as no warlords seem to have survived the crisis!

    India struggling with massive Abyssal forces!

    Australia one of the few major holdouts left without shipgirls, as Abyssals are struggling to get to any local cities. Is the legendary deadliness of the Australian wildlife and horrifying powers of the Abyssals meeting their match against each other?”

    Cut it out, Wolfen. I can hear you thinking, and I need more sleep, damn it.” Mordred mutters. With those words, Wolfen closes her eyes, and sleeps.


    Author’s Notes:

    This is the second to last chapter, before we have the Konosuba snippet happen, and more plot starts up as a result.

    Working out what the last Emperor of Japan was named, as well as how he was titled, was one thing. Working out how the rest of the world has been reacting, is another, worse thing.

    As for the rest? You get to see some actual world building. Yes, the world is having major issues, as of right now. Europe is in the middle of struggling to not burn to the ground, as most of the Atlantic’s half starved Abyssals go after the breadbaskets in Europe. Russia and China refuse to give back the other’s shipgirls, as they desperately fend off attack after attack, continually pissing off each other.

    That’s not going into what happened to the Mediterranean, the Philippines, Cuba, the Dominican Republic and Haiti, and everywhere else.

    Also, sorry for taking so long to post this. The research alone...
    I'm starting to suspect that talking with Kieran influences my rolls on Fate/Grand Order Heavily. How else can you explain me talking with him, then rolling for 30, only to get 3 Archer of Shinjuku on my second ten roll?

    I write like Douglas Adams. Proof: http://iwl.me/s/696f37bd

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