Saber Wars II - To The Beginning of Space

Prologue: Overture

???: This is the story of a universe that existed once upon a time.

???: I know you may have more than a few things you'd like to say in response to that...

???: ...but I hope you'll at least hear me out, even if you have to take this with a big grain of salt.

???: This might have all really happened in some other universe out there...

???: ...or it may just be a myth that could never have happened at any time, in any universe.


Time: After a Master Mission Training Session


Place: Cafeteria on the Way to Your Room

Emiya: Oh, hey. All done for today, Fujimaru? It's great that you never skip a training session even on your days off.

Emiya: But you don't want to work yourself so hard that your body never gets the rest it needs.

Emiya: On your days off, you should stick to some light exercise and give your mind a chance to unwind.

Emiya: Then again, I guess Chaldea's not exactly awash with entertainment options, is it?

Emiya: Okay then, here's an idea. What if you tried learning to cook? It's fun, productive, and anyone can do it.

Emiya: I've even got a starter kit right here that can help get you on your way. Here you go.

Fujimaru 1: ...Welp, now I've got a bag full of ingredients.

Fujimaru 2: ...Guess I'd better figure out what a good beginner dish would be.

Mash: It's me, Senpai. Good job on your Master training today.

Mash: Oh, what's that heavy backpack you've got there? Some new kind of Mystic Code?

Mash: It's...what? Cookware?

Mash: Well, it might be a good idea to have some sort of survival kit like that with us on missions...

Mash: Hehe, that's just like Emiya to be looking out for you. I hope you'll make good use of it.

Mash: As a matter of fact, I'm here to deliver some food myself.

Mash: Today I have Russian-style black tea, thanks to Anastasia teaching me how to make it. Here you go.

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, tea! That's much easier to start with than curry!

Fujimaru 2: Thanks, Mash!

Mash: I'm told you make it fairly strong to start with, then add more hot water to dilute it to your tastes.

Mash: So we have sweeter snacks than usual to offset the tea's bitterne–

Mash: I'm sorry, I just remembered I had a message for you too.

Mash: Ishtar mentioned she was going to come visit you in a bit.

Fujimaru 1: Really? Usually she just shows up out of nowhere.

Fujimaru 2: If she's giving us warning, maybe it's not trouble for once?

Mash: I believe her exact words were:

Mash: “I can't go anywhere anymore without everyone suspecting I'm up to something! It's wreaking havoc on my goddess rep!”

Mash: ...followed by:

Mash: “So today, I'm going to pay you a visit in a way properly befitting a goddess!”

Mash: “And I'm gonna make this one of the happiest days of your life to thank you for all you've done for me!”

Mash: “I'll be dressing in my Sunday best for the party, so make sure you're wearing your best Mystic Code too!”

Mash: She sounded very concerned, and I can't help but wonder why she wants you to wear a Mystic Code...

Mash: Still, I can't wait to see what she has in mind, Senpai!

Fujimaru 1: A Mystic Code, huh... So I guess she wants to fight a proper battle?

Mash: Well, I got the sense that she had more, um, formal wear in mind...

Mash: Especially when she said she'd been researching well-known tourist spots in preparation for this day...

Fujimaru 2: So today's the day we get to see what Ishtar's really capable of, huh...

Mash: That's right! She said herself she was going to make a bigger splash than ever!

Mash: Was that an earthquake? I don't think we're in any danger, since the alarm didn't go off, but–

Dark Ishtar?: ...Teleportation complete.

Dark Ishtar?: Coordinates confirmed. Margin of error: X +0.00021, Y -0.00018, Z...

Dark Ishtar?: ...No status abnormalities detected. I came here knowing I could die if things went wrong...

Dark Ishtar?: ...but it hasn't been at all like I expected. Actually, it felt kind of good. I could get used to this.

Mash: Um... Ishtar?

Mash: I know you said you were going to dress up, but I wasn't expecting you to make yourself younger as well!

Mash: Sen–I mean, Master seems to be completely at a loss for words.

Dark Ishtar?: ...So that's the Master, huh. If I hadn't seen it with my own eyes, I would never have believed it.

Dark Ishtar?: Securing target now. Commence retrieval operation on my signal.

Fujimaru 1: I'm sorry, I'm still not ready just yet.

Dark Ishtar?: Huh!?

Dark Ishtar?: (What does [♂ he/♀ she] mean [♂ he's/♀ she's] not ready? Did they know we were coming!?)

Dark Ishtar?: (And why is this primitive life-form looking at me so...sympathetically?)

Dark Ishtar?: (I know I only came to this universe recently, so I shouldn't be that notorious just yet, but even so...)

Dark Ishtar?: (Anyway, if they knew I was coming, maybe I should abort...?)

Dark Ishtar?: (...No, now that I think about it, this works out better. No self-respecting evildoer would just skulk around in the shadows.)

Dark Ishtar?: (I wouldn't be a true goddess of evil if I didn't slaughter anyone who got in my way.)

Dark Ishtar?: ...All clear. Securing target now.

Dark Ishtar?: Listen up, you primitive. I'm about to take you to my ship.

Dark Ishtar?: Don't bother trying to resist. Just do as I say, and nobody has to get hurt.

Dark Ishtar?: That goes for you too, girl. I'm only taking the Master with me, so don't you bother trying to resist either.

Fujimaru 1: Yup, I figured as much.

Fujimaru 2: Business as usual, huh.

Mash: I know. Have a good time, you two. I'll see you when you get back!

Dark Ishtar?: Huh?

Dark Ishtar?: You do realize I'll be taking Master with me, right!? And you're just...fine with that!?

Mash: Um, yes? I mean, we knew this was happening today, so it's not like it's a big surprise.

Dark Ishtar?: (She knew? So...she's some kind of double agent who's been spying for us?)

Dark Ishtar?: (Ugh. I guess Munenori was taking more of his unnecessary precautions.)

Dark Ishtar?: (I was expecting to have to make my way through a hall full of deadly lasers, or to have to break into a fifty-meter thick superalloy safe...)

Dark Ishtar?: (...or to cut my way through a ton of samurai guards yelling “Intruder! Get her!” without even batting an eye!)

Dark Ishtar?: (He should know I had over three thousand sessions in the simulator for those exact scenarios!)

Dark Ishtar?: (And now, all my hard work's been wasted yet again thanks to him and his darn spy... I'll have to give him a good beating once I get back to the ship.)

Mash: ...?

Dark Ishtar?: ...Hmph, all right. This was way too easy for my tastes, but never mind that now.

Dark Ishtar?: You're the Master, right? Here, put this retrieval beacon on your wrist.

Dark Ishtar?: ...No, I don't care which one it goes on. Just put the damn thing on.

Dark Ishtar?: Got it on? Did you hit that button? It's nice and tight now? Good.

Dark Ishtar?: Beacon attached to target. Commence retrieval now.

Mash: A simple Rayshift!? No, wait. I don't think that was a Rayshift at all!

Ishtar: Hey hey, Fujimaru! Am I right on time, or fashionably early?

Mash: Ishtar!? Didn't you just leave here with Senpai!?

Ishtar: What do you mean?

Ishtar: Yeah, I was planning to take Fujimaru on a tour of the world's seven greatest gates, but we haven't gone yet...obviously.

Mash: W-well, if that wasn't you, maybe it was Ereshkigal!?

Ereshkigal: Did I just hear my name?

Mash: Huh!? Th-then who did Senpai just leave with!?

Ishtar: What are you talking about, Mash? Fill us in already.

Mash: Well, just before you two showed up, a slightly younger, well, you–or at least, someone who looked like you...

Mash: ...showed up out of nowhere, put some kind of retrieval beacon on Senpai, and then they both just disappeared.

Ishtar: What!? So [♂ he/♀ she] was abducted!? A-all right, let's just calm down here, Mash. Also me.

Ishtar: Ereshkigal, we're cranking our magical energy sensors to absolute maximum.

Ishtar: I'll check the northern hemisphere for signs of Fujimaru. You check the south!

Ereshkigal: A-all right! The other Divine Spirits probably won't be too happy about this, but desperate times and all that!

Ereshkigal: ...Um, I'm not seeing [♂ him/♀ her] anywhere on the southern hemisphere! What about you, Ishtar?

Ishtar: ...Nothing. So that can only mean–

Ereshkigal: Fujimaru isn't on Earth!?

Ereshkigal: Th-th-th-th-this is terrible!

Ereshkigal: How did this happen, Mash!? What do we do now, Mash!!??

Mash: ... (Collapsed with her eyes still open)

Ishtar: Oh man! Mash is usually unflappable, so things MUST be bad for her to freeze up like this!

Ishtar: ...All right, I've got a bad feeling about this, but not a catastrophic feeling, so I do think [♂ he's/♀ she's] okay...

Ishtar: ...but I've also got a feeling that this new event isn't going to be much fun for either of us!


Prologue: Overture, continued

Fujimaru 1: I think I'll take a little peek out the window.

Fujimaru 1: At long last, the final frontier, huh...

A:Dark Ishtar?: Slide Shift complete. Welcome to the Servantverse, Master.

A:Dark Ishtar?: Weep if you like. This is not the universe you know.

A:Dark Ishtar?: You are the only one of your kind in this whole galaxy. You know no one here, so don't expect to find any friends or allies.

A:Dark Ishtar?: As such, you cannot hope for any manner of rescue.

A:Dark Ishtar?: ...I can see you don't know what I'm talking about.

A:Dark Ishtar?: I'm saying that no one is going to come save you. Now do you understand?

Fujimaru 1: Oh nooo... Whatever will I dooo... Heeelp...

Fujimaru 2: So that's what you meant!

A:Dark Ishtar?: Good. At least you understand that you've been abducted.

A:Dark Ishtar?: Heh. Now that you're in my custody, there's nowhere in this universe you can run where I can't find you.

A:Dark Ishtar?: You are a prisoner, friendless and alone, in a universe far from the one you know. How does it feel?

Fujimaru 1: This is a really nice room.

Fujimaru 2: This room is really comfy.

A:Dark Ishtar?: ...Indeed, this is a special room we use just for guests. I'm impressed you picked up on that.

A:Dark Ishtar?: But don't let a little perceptiveness go to your head. Remember, your life is still hanging by a thread.

A:Dark Ishtar?: ...Huh? Even after hearing that, you still just want to know my name?

A:Dark Ishtar?: ...All right, I suppose I can spare you that much. Besides, it's only right that a swordfighter introduce herself when asked to.

A:Dark Ishtar?: All right, then. Tremble in fear as I reveal my name!

A:Dark Ishtar?: I am the leader of the Space Shinkageryu, and the greatest swordfighter in all the universe!

A:Dark Ishtar?: I am the avatar of the goddess of war, fear, and desire. I am Ashtart!

Fujimaru 1: Ashtart? Not Ishtar?

Ashtart: ...Ishtar?

Ashtart: No. My name is nothing like that. That one just screams problem child.

Ashtart: ...You don't appear to be trembling in fear.

Ashtart: You do know that most low-level Servants would explode in shock just from hearing my name, right?

Fujimaru 2: Space Shinkageryu?

Ashtart: Yes. Space Shinkageryu.

Ashtart: We're an illegal Saber clan of good lineage named after a technique used by the great dual-wielding swordfighter...

Ashtart: ...who proved themself the strongest of all Sabers with their God Shadow Stream technique.

Ashtart: ...Then again, I suppose there's no way you'd know this, since we always operate in the shadows.

Ashtart: ...But enough idle talk. I don't have time to be chattering with you.

Ashtart: Master of Earth, or whatever your name was, you're going to be my stepping-stone to ruling this universe.

Ashtart: Your sacrifice will enable me to become the ultimate Saber.

Ashtart: The preparations will take another ten days by the ship's calendar, so you can hang around cursing your impotence, if that makes you feel better.

Fujimaru 1: Hmm...

Fujimaru 2: Well that doesn't sound good.

Ashtart: Did you sleep well yesterday? Good. Glad to hear it.

Ashtart: I came to make sure you hadn't died of stress from the sudden drastic change in your environment...

Ashtart: ...but it looks like you're handling it better than I expected. (Muttered under her breath)

Ashtart: ...Hmph. All right then, let's get this interrogation started.

Ashtart: First off, what is a Master anyway? I'm pretty sure there's no other Servants of that class around.

Fujimaru 1: Masters are just Masters.

Fujimaru 2: That's 'cause Masters aren't Servants.

Ashtart: So you're not a Servant at all...?

Ashtart: Then, you really are just an ordinary human...

Ashtart: The Servantverse is a universe where all the people are Servants.

Ashtart: And not just our people. That goes for our gods as well.

Ashtart: So if you aren't any kind of Servant whatsoever, your universe must be pretty old...

Ashtart: Don't get it twisted, though. That doesn't make you special or anything!

Ashtart: I don't need YOU, specifically. I just need A Master, and you happen to fit that bill!

Ashtart: ...All right, so what can a Master do, anyway? As far as I can tell, you don't seem to have any skills...

Ashtart: ...Really? You can't even fight yourself? All you do is give orders to Servants?

Ashtart: Well, that's a relief.

Ashtart: Since you're just a waste of space, you won't mind sacrificing your life for me, right?

Ashtart: Wake up. You're a prisoner, remember? You're not on vacation, so you can't just spend all day in bed.

Ashtart: Space Shinkageryu shows no mercy towards anyone, even our priso–

Ashtart: ...And now you're just doing push-ups like it's a normal day...

Ashtart: You're handling this well. I'll give you that. You must have been through enough that you don't panic easily.

Ashtart: By the way, how's the temperature in here? You getting enough oxygen?

Ashtart: I've never captured a Master before, so I'm not real clear on proper upkeep for one.

Ashtart: ...I see. So the room's perfectly fine, but you feel like you're dying of boredom?

Ashtart: ...Fine. I'll let you use the terminal.

Ashtart: Just give the screen a little tap like so and you can surf the spacenet all you like.

Ashtart: I can spare up to five thousand QP per day, so feel free to spend that on Space Amazones if you want.

Ashtart: I recommend starting with this site that tells you how to avoid space phishing.

Ashtart: There's no end of unscrupulous scammers who make shopping sites that look identical to the official ones and only swap out the purchase links to their own back end these days, you see.

Ashtart: Luckily, this site will help you spot all of their tricks. It's useful, helpful, and even fun to read. I love it.

Ashtart: Oh, and if you want to livestream yourself, that's this button. Just be careful you don't end up the spacenet's punch line of the day.

Ashtart: Heh. Good morning. I see you fell straight into my trap.

Ashtart: You were so caught up in online shopping that you never stopped to think about escaping, did you?

Ashtart: Anyway, here's some water. You can use this if you prefer tea.

Ashtart: ...What was that? “Thanks, Ishtar”?

Ashtart: ...My name is Ashtart. Not Ishtar.

Ashtart: Normally, I'd just cut you down for your mistake. Luckily for you, I need you alive for your sacrifice.

Ashtart: Just make sure you don't repeat the mistake. I mean it.

Ashtart: ...Force of habit? You just can't help but get my name wrong?

Ashtart: ...Fine. I'll let it slide, but only while we're in this room.

Ashtart: Exactly! Everyone in the Servantverse wants to be a Saber right now!

Ashtart: But of course, not everyone is fortunate enough to be one.

Ashtart: Servants can't help the class they were born into, though. Until now, that is!

Ashtart: I worked my Divine Spirit Servant powers to the bone to come up with a brand-new item!

Ashtart: Check it out! This is a Saber Badge, a Simple Spiritron Dress that turns anyone who wears it into a Saber!

Ashtart: Heh, that's right. Now you get it? Me and the rest of Space Shinkageryu control the universe's hottest item.

Ashtart: We basically took over the universe with the power of economics and branding alone.

Ashtart: Now every Servant in the Servantverse is fighting to get their hands on my Saber Badges...

Ashtart: ...and any semblance of order this whole universe had has gone right out the space window.

Ashtart: In fact, everyone's so caught up in trying to be a Saber that they don't even notice us breaking the law.

Ashtart: We plan to use the massive profits from the badges to finish building Dark Maanna, the very space fortress you're in right now...

Ashtart: ...and then make our way to the Origin Universe, one of the zones declared off-limits by interplanetary treaty!

Ashtart: Hehehe... And your sacrifice will be the key to getting us inside.

Ashtart: Well? Are you honored? You should be.

Ashtart: ...I think you have the wrong idea. You do know there's more than one type of sacrifice, right?

Ashtart: Now that I know you're not a Servant, I won't be cutting out your heart or tearing off your limbs.

Ashtart: If the legends are right, you'll just be a catalyst–a mirror that will reflect a galactic crap ton of magical energy right into me.

Ashtart: The ritual only calls for a Master. It doesn't specify whether they have to be alive.

Ashtart: Oh, but if we do end up needing your heart, I won't think twice about killing you.

Fujimaru 1: Well damn...

Fujimaru 2: So I'm a catalyst now, huh...

Ashtart: That's all you have to say, huh. You know, I think I'm starting to find your annoying little comments kind of amusing, really.

Ashtart: But, who knows how much longer that'll last?

Ashtart: We're getting close to the warp point. Try not to wet yourself or anything before we get there.

Ashtart: I finished today's inspection. What's our current status?

C:Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Khhh hoooh. (Translation: Welcome back, fair goddess.)

Ashtart: Take it off.

C:Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Kh hoh? (Translation: I'm sorry?)

Ashtart: I said, take off that damn mask! You could be making faces at me underneath it!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Oh, yes, forgive me.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Your wonderfully evil deeds have lit such a fire under these old bones that I simply couldn't help myself.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: After all, I used to wear this mask all the time back when you and I went around attacking whole galaxies.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I still remember how it used to frighten you when you were little, and how you would shout, “There's a demon on the loose! There's a demon on the–”

Ashtart: Spare me the trip down memory lane. I'm not a child anymore.

Ashtart: I'm now a better swordfighter than you, and I'm the heir to the Space Shinkageryu.

Ashtart: Whatever parent-child relationship we may have had is long gone.

Ashtart: ...In fact, it never existed to begin with.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I see. Forgive me, Lady Ashtart.

Ashtart: This is your last warning, Munenori.

Ashtart: The next time I see you wearing that mask will be the last time you have a head to put it on. Is that clear?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Yes, my lady. I won't forget it.

Ashtart: ...(Sigh) I've heard that one before. Several times just today, in fact.

Ashtart: Well, no matter. At Space Shinkageryu, we do evil right.

Ashtart: Our mottos are “Treat all others equally badly” and “Do one bad deed every day.”

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Ah yes, the new rules you came up with. If I may, my lady, they strike me as a tad...overzealous.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Might I suggest relaxing the quotas for the swordfighters we employ just a bit?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Don't you think requiring them to defeat a single resistance Archer per day or face expulsion is too much to ask of our low-end, fake Sabers?

Ashtart: Not at all. Evil is nothing if not diligent, so of course they're supposed to be busy. Nothing good–or, well, bad–can come from an evil organization cutting corners.

Ashtart: Any Sabers who join us just so they can slack off and hang out will answer to my blade.

Ashtart: Remember, Munenori, the true threat to evil is not good.

Ashtart: The only thing required for good to triumph is for evil Servants to do nothing.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I see. So we are truly running a cutthroat operation, in every sense of the word. Hahahahaha.

C:Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Khh hooh khh hooh. (Translation: How careless of me. I raised her all wrong.)

Ashtart: Did I not JUST tell you to take that mask off!?

Ashtart: At any rate, Dark Maanna has reached the warp point.

Ashtart: Commencing warp to forbidden zone. Our destination is the center of the Origin Universe.

Ashtart: Once we arrive, I'll activate Dark Maanna's shrine functionality and become the ultimate Divine Spirit Servant.

Ashtart: I trust you have no problems with the plan, Munenori?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Of course, my lady. That is what Space Shinkageryu has been striving for over the last ten thousand years.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I was only able to master the blade and become a sword saint myself...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...but I have every confidence that you can fulfill my ancestor's greatest wish, Lady Ashtart.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Once you become the ultimate Divine Spirit Servant, you will be able to accomplish what every Saber has dreamed of:

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Cutting the very universe itself.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...Or something like that.

Ashtart: ...I know I asked you this before, but are you really sure that's what your ancestor wanted?

Ashtart: You're positive you're not misinterpreting anything?

C:Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Khh hooh. Khh hooh. (Translation: I may have left out a few crucial details, but in general, I am certain this is correct.)

Ashtart: ...I see. You swordfighters and your dreams don't make a lot of sense to me...

Ashtart: ...but if you're sure this is my destiny, I don't mind becoming your ultimate goddess or whatever.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I knew you wouldn't fail us, my lady.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: All right, commencing warp sequence for Dark Maanna Space Fortress.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Oh, one more thing, Lady Ashtart. Entering a forbidden zone requires a tremendous amount of Altrium.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Once Dark Maanna warps inside, we will not have enough fuel left for a return trip.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: So since we get a single chance, I would ask that you refrain from your usual gaffes during this process.

Ashtart: ...I know. You don't want me to do anything when the stakes are at their highest, right? You don't have to remind me.

Ashtart: Well, I can't mess up if I don't do anything, so I'll just let you handle the warp all by yourself.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Thank you, my lady. Now then, all hands, brace for impact. Once Space Shinkageryu enters the forbidden zone, we–

Ashtart: Huh? Hang on. Did you say “all hands”? That means the Master too, right?

Ashtart: Now that I think of it, I wonder if [♂ his/♀ her] room is designed to safely withstand the stress of warp...

Ashtart: Let's see, where's the console... There! Special room defensive field...

Ashtart: Aha, “VIP Safety Functions.” This must be it. (Presses button)

Ashtart: Huh? An error? Why isn't it accepting my ID!? I'm the leader!

Ashtart: Okay, um, how about this then? Another error? Oh come on!

Ashtart: Why do you keep giving me errors!? Console! Explain yourself!

Ashtart: “Please see Help”? You think I'm the kind of goddess that needs help?

Ashtart: How dare you!? You're just a machine! You're supposed to do what I tell you, period!

Ashtart: If you can't even do that, I'll kill you myself!

Ashtart: Space Shinkageryu secret technique! Nendou Suigetsu Futatsu Dou!

P.A. System: Combat detected on board. Executing emergency measures.

P.A. System: Prioritizing VIP room guest's safety in accordance with evil organization operating procedure.

P.A. System: ...VIP room jettison toward nearest inhabitable planet complete.

Ashtart: ...Huh?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Ah, yes, that was the emergency escape pod designed to look like a guest room that I made for my own use.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: No matter. A single missing room will not impede Dark Maanna's warping functionality.

P.A. System: T-minus three seconds to warp. Commencing Dark Maanna Touko Travel.

Ashtart: Stop! Stooop! That room isn't empty!

Ashtart: It's where I'm keeping the Master we need for the sacrifice!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...Lady Ashtart, why did you not put the Master in prison, like we do with all our other prisoners?

Ashtart: know... As the leader of Space Shinkageryu, I thought our special sacrifice deserved a special room...

C:Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ......

Ashtart: Say something, dammit!

Auto Voice Assistant: Welcome to the Dark Maanna emergency escape system. An executive emergency escape order has just been issued.

Auto Voice Assistant: Prepare for mandatory emergency escape. Once begun, this operation cannot be halted.

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Fujimaru 2: What are you talking about?

Auto Voice Assistant: This pod room will navigate automatically to the nearest habitable planet.

Auto Voice Assistant: Any expenses incurred upon landing, up to and including return trip fees, are the responsibility of the passenger.

Auto Voice Assistant: This nonrefundable pod room will be jettisoned momentarily. Have a pleasant journey.

Auto Voice Assistant: And may the protection of Planet Saber be with you.

Fujimaru 1: Aaaaaahhh!

Section 1: Texas Beyond I

Fujimaru 1: G...

Fujimaru 1: G...

Fujimaru 1: Gaaah! It's burning up in here!

Auto Voice Assistant: Entering atmosphere. Entering atmosphere. The current cabin temperature is fifty degrees Celsius and rising.

Auto Voice Assistant: Anyone wishing to escape the heat should don the complimentary space suit.

Fujimaru 1: This must be it!

Auto Voice Assistant: Good job suiting up so quickly. Ten out of ten.

Auto Voice Assistant: We have an important announcement. It has come to our attention that this pod suffers a fundamental design flaw.

Auto Voice Assistant: We regret to inform you that its safety and durability levels do not meet galactic standards.

Auto Voice Assistant: On a completely unrelated note, our current altitude is ten thousand meters... Nine thousand five hundred meters... Nine thousand meters...

Fujimaru 1: Uh, last I checked, we still haven't landed!

Fujimaru 2: Don't tell me...

Auto Voice Assistant: Attention: This pod will now automatically disassemble. Thank you for your patronage.

Fujimaru 1: Not agaaain!!!

Fujimaru 2: I'm falliiing!!!

X: ...(Sigh) I can't believe I ended up all alone on this backwater planet.

X: Stallion II is in the shop after I had to go through those ten black holes to escape...

X: Almost all my equipment is gone, along with all the QP I earned...

X: I even have to walk my air bike across this wasteland just to save as much Altrium as possible...

X: What kind of reward is this for the Saber who saved the universe?

X: Oh well. Pity, party of one. Suits me fine since I wanted to be alone right now anyway...

X: But all the same, what happened to the Servantverse while I was gone!?

X: Now everyone and their mother's going around calling themselves Sabers, even though they don't have a shred of respect for actual Sabers!

X: Hell, forget respect! Some of them are even going around hunting the actual Sabers down 'cause they say they're hogging all the glory!

X: And as if dealing with a bunch of new rivals for my Saber hunts wasn't bad enough...

X: ...if this crap sundae needed sprinkles, it's that no one has even come looking for me! ME! Heroine X, the Saber to beat all Sabers!

X: I swear, what's wrong with these Saber poseurs!? Can't they tell the real thing when they see one!?

X: Huh, that sounded like a spaceship exploding. You don't hear that every day on planets that don't have so much as a spaceport!

X: Ooh, and now its passenger is falling to the ground. They've got guts, making an emergency landing without even thinking to bring a parachute.

X: Is there a Gorilla class among Servants too? I can't remember for sure.

X: ...Wait. Hang on. Is that...?

Fujimaru 1: I'm doooooomed!

Fujimaru 2: So this is how it ends! Mooore faaalling!!!

???: Nope! Heaven helps those who help themselves, after all! It's too soon to resign yourself to your fate just yet!

???: At first I thought the falling [♂ guy/♀ girl] was just someone who looked like you, but it turns out it really was you, Fujimaru!

Fujimaru 1: Is that...!?

Fujimaru 2: Ms. X...!

X: That's right! It's Heroine X, Saber-killer extraordinaire and visitor from the Shining Blue Galaxy!

X: Then again, I guess you're the visitor this time, since this is the Servantverse and all.

X: It's no problem for me to visit your universe, but if you're in mine, something must be seriously wrong.

X: How did you get here? Did your universe finally kick the space bucket?

Fujimaru 1: It's just fine, thanks. Now HEEEEEELP!

Fujimaru 2: Never mind that now! Hurry up and save meee!

X: Oh, right, good point! Okay then, here comes my Diving Catch!

X: You know, the fact that I showed up at just the right time to save the protagonist's life with my flying bike really makes me look like a true heroine, yeah?

X: So, so... That must mean... Yes! I'm the main character for this event!!!


Fujimaru 1: ...And now, here we are.

X: I see... So you had another visitor from our universe besides me and Ex...

X: And not only was this visitor there for a Master, she also looks exactly like Ishtar...

X: This can only mean one thing.

X: I'm not the main character after all! FINE! I'm taking my air bike and going home. X out!

Fujimaru 1: Wait! Come back!

Fujimaru 2: Hey! Don't leave me here alooone!

X: Whoa, you really are serious about not letting me go.

X: I figured you'd have no trouble finding a way out of this mess, what with you being the unparalleled expert of finding your way into them so often...

X: But maybe I was too hasty. This isn't your usual Rayshift, after all.

X: Given how you've ended up in a parallel universe, I can understand why you might be kind of on edge.

X: All right then. The fact that we ran into each other like this must be the sacred sword's will.

X: Because of reasons, I may be a little low on heroine power just now, to say nothing of just plain energy, but if you want my help anyway, I can't say no!

X: Let's see... I know, let's start by looking for a space diner.

X: It doesn't matter how backwater a planet might be, you can always find a space diner somewhere on it.

X: Once we do, we can grab some food, acquire some information, and most importantly, get out of this damn heat.

X: Oh, but I did use the last of my air bike's fuel to save you, so we'll have to hoof it.

Fujimaru 1: Uh... I don't see a single building anywhere...

Fujimaru 2: (Gulp) Okay, I'll do my best!

X: Don't worry. Another car's bound to come down this road sooner or later, and once it does, we can ask the driver to share some fuel with us.

X: Look, here comes one right–

Space Mohawk: Heehaha! Guess I know what I'm having for lunch today! Aw man, an Assassin!? That's just false advertising!

Space Mohawk: Ah, whatever. I'll just have to kill you weaklings quickly and move on to something better!

Space Mohawk: I can at least turn a little profit once I sell your brains on the space black market!

X: Oh good! Now I don't even have to feel bad about taking all your stuff!

Section 2: Texas Beyond II

Ashtart: ...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Well, this is quite the pickle.

Ashtart: ...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Well, this is quite the pickle.

Ashtart: I HEARD YOU THE FIRST TIME! It'll be fine as long as I fix it, right!?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I appreciate your can-do attitude. But unfortunately, it is not that simple.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: We have already completed our warp into the Origin Universe. Dark Maanna no longer has enough fuel to return home.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: And there is no way to tell if the ritual will work at all without a sacrificial Master...

Ashtart: You think I don't know that? Of course we can't use Dark Maanna to go back and collect [♂ him/♀ her] ourselves.

Ashtart: But we can still use the comms to contact the Six Blades.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Now I see. So you will call on Space Shinkageryu's six assistant instructors stationed throughout the universe for help.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: The Flashing Sword. The Freezing Sword. The Darkened Sword. The Monstrous Sword. The Proprietor Sword. The Dragon-slayer Sword.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Between the six of them, they should be able to catch a single Master as easily as cooking rice with a candle.

Ashtart: (H-huh? How is that easy...?) Uh, y-yeah. Exactly...

Ashtart: Now send out a message to all our soldiers and Saber Badge Sabers. It should read:

Ashtart: “Capture this [♂ man/♀ woman] and bring [♂ him/♀ her] to me.”

Ashtart: “Whoever does so shall be awarded five gold Saber Badges and six-hundred and sixty-six billion Dislikes!”

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Six-hundred and sixty-six billion... That is quite a lot of Dislikes...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Even those most reviled of villains, the Six Blades, have yet to obtain twenty million...

Ashtart: If this is the last step I need to make the universe mine, they will be Dislikes well spent.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Indeed, my lady. I agree wholeheartedly. Very well then, I'll make wanted posters as well.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: This way, all Servants will be keeping an eye out for [♂ him/♀ her], not only the Saber clan.

Ashtart: Huh? Um, I think that's going a little too–

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: There. The wanted posters are complete and have been sent to all corners of the universe. [♂ He/♀ She] will no longer find refuge on any planet.

Ashtart: ...All right. Then we'll just wait right here until someone finds [♂ him/♀ her].

Ashtart: All hands, take this opportunity to rest up while you can. Those of you who have paid vacation left, now is your chance to use it.

Ashtart: We will perform the ritual as soon as the Master is back in our possession. Enjoy this time of peace, for this universe shall never know another!

X: (Nom, nom, nom) Ahh, that hit the spot. There's nothing like normal food after what feels like an eternity of...other stuff.

X: It even tastes just like what Chief Red used to make!

X: You know, maybe that masked Archer ended up as the Dyna Group's head chef!

X: We should all go and get him to treat us sometime!

Fujimaru 1: This really does taste familiar...

Fujimaru 2: This almost tastes like...the recipe they use at Chaldea's cafeteria?

X: Anywho, this planet is pretty rough, huh? Just look at all the wanted posters on that wall.

X: Though I do love the whole Wild West vibe this place has got going on.

X: Huh, I've never seen a girl this young on a wanted poster before. What's the universe coming to, am I right? (Munch, munch)

X: That said, I'm pretty sure things weren't nearly bad enough to warrant you showing up...

X: honestly, it's kind of hard to believe that someone just brought you here.

X: This place is called the Servantverse for a reason. You can't throw a rock without hitting a Servant.

X: (Whispering) And just between us, there aren't any Masters in this world.

X: (Whispering) I only happened to find out about them when I received my sacred sword, so I'm an exception to the rule.

X: Whoever abducted you must be either a seriously powerful Servant...

X: ...or maybe one who just doesn't fit in with the rest of the Servantverse.

Fujimaru 1: I don't know... She seemed like the same old goddess to me.

X: Hmm. That's a face that says “She might cause no end of problems, but she's not a bad goddess” if ever I've seen one.

X: Hm? Hang on. A goddess? Like a Divine Spirit Servant? And her name's Ashtart?

X: ...Never heard of her.

X: That's weird. If she really is a Divine Spirit Servant, I'm pretty sure I would at least know her name...

Fujimaru 1: So how about you, X?

Fujimaru 2: So what are you doing here, X?

X: Me?

X: Uh, well, I was touring around the galaxy and just kinda got the urge for a bit of solo camping, you know?

X: But there's, uh, nothing else to it!

X: It's definitely not that I didn't have a single friend who was willing to come along with me! Nope!

X: Everyone I contacted either never got back to me, already had other plans, or just flat out said no!

Fujimaru 1: I'll just pretend I never heard that.

X: That'd be great. Thanks.

X: At any rate!

X: It was only after I ended up on this planet that I found out it doesn't have a spaceport.

X: So without any spaceliners stopping here, or even any spaceships, period...

X: ...I had no choice but to stick around on this planet indefinitely.

X: The journey since then has been long and arduous. I don't know if you noticed, but there are space dinosaurs on this planet. Space dinosaurs!

X: I don't usually like to kill if I can help it, but if I wanted to survive, it was either them or me...

X: Suffice to say, they turned out to be surprisingly tasty!

Fujimaru 1: You ate space dinosaurs!?

Fujimaru 2: That's pretty metal.

X: That's right! I may not have had any intention of doing so, but as of this planet, I'm now Survival Camper X!

X: Or SurCam X for short!

X: I get the feeling this new skill might come in handy one day, but let's all hope I never have to use it.

Fujimaru 1: ...Wait, what?

Fujimaru 2: Uh... So what about the bill for this place?

X: Of course I don't have any money on me right now. I'm flat broke. Zip. Zilch. Nada.

X: But sitting around doing nothing after our meal will only attract suspicion. Know what? I say we order seconds!

Fujimaru 1: Stop digging! We're in deep enough already!

Space Mohawk: Aaargh! I can't believe I got reverse-mugged for the second time in a row!

Fujimaru 1: Ms. X!

Fujimaru 2: Did all those space mohawks just come crashing through the window!?

Blonde Cowgirl: Sorry about the window! We'll pay you back for it once we collect the bounty on these guys, 'kay?

Space Mohawk: Dammit! No way I'm getting my ass handed to me twice in one day! Is there anyone here I can take hostage!?

X: Oh, hey there. Thanks again for “sharing” every last bit of your fuel with us.

Space Mohawk: Aaah! That crazed Assassin's here too!?

Blonde Cowgirl: So, you're still up to no good, huh? You haven't learned your lesson at all, have you?

Blonde Cowgirl: Honestly, I'm impressed you've got the guts to pull that crap in front of us. Then again, maybe you just get off on being punished?

Blonde Cowgirl: Well okay then! In that case, I guess we'll just have to indulge your fetish☆ Hear that, Ishtarin? We can totally go nuts on these guys!

Brunette Cowgirl: Enough with the stupid quips, Jane. Let's just take care of these goons.

Brunette Cowgirl: A bunch of fake Sabers like this won't even pay for our dinner. Especially now that someone else already took all their valuables!

Space Mohawk: We ain't fake Sabers! We're fully legit R Sabers, and we've got the ten bronze badges to prove it!

Brunette Cowgirl: Only fakes need badges, dumbass!

Brunette Cowgirl: Hey, you two! If you're not too busy, how about giving us a hand?

Brunette Cowgirl: You take care of these guys, and we'll take care of the ones outside!

X: Hmm, so they've got bounties on them, huh? Maybe we'll be able to pay for lunch after all!


G:X: Heh, talk about a piece of cake! This was just the dessert I needed!

Space Mohawk A: D-dammit! No way us Sabers are losing to a damn Assassin twice in a–Hm?

Space Mohawk B: (Hey, check it out. That's the [♂ dude/♀ girl] from that wanted poster...)

Space Mohawk C: (It is, isn't it...)

Fujimaru 1: Hm?

Fujimaru 2: Those mohawk guys are looking at me...

X: Damn, about half of them got away...

X: Oh well, those three laid out on the floor should at least pay for lunch.

E:Blonde Cowgirl: And that takes care of the outside! Thanks for handling the ones in here!

F:Brunette Cowgirl: Yeah, you guys were a big help!

F:Brunette Cowgirl: And here I was expecting you to just buy us some time. You're pretty strong, aren't you!

Fujimaru 1: Huh!?

Fujimaru 2: (Is that...a second Space Ishtar!?)

Brunette Cowgirl: What? You wondering how we're gonna split the bounty? Don't worry, you two can keep the one for those guys.

Brunette Cowgirl: We'll be fine with just the guys outside. Besides, we're not too hard up right now anyway☆

X: Hold it!

X: Fujimaru, would you mind comparing those girls on the wanted posters to these two!?

Fujimaru 1: The girl in this poster looks kind of familiar.

Fujimaru 2: I'm pretty sure I've seen this girl somewhere before.

Brunette Cowgirl: Hm? Let me see that. Huh!? The hell is this!?

Brunette Cowgirl: “Devil Tightwad Ishter Doesn't even leave tiny Embers in her wake.”

Brunette Cowgirl: “Calamity Jan Has the most evil smile known to Servantkind.”

Space Ishtar: ...No way. These are for us!?

Jane: Whaaat!? I can't possibly look this stupid when I smile!

X: That was close. I almost let more evildoers get away right under my nose. Now I see... That disturbance just now must have been a turf war.

Space Ishtar: Huh!? What're you talking about!? I'm not a bad guy!

X: The bounty on your head says otherwise! Now shut up and come with me! You're paying for my real dessert!

Jane: Oh yeah, I get that☆ It's not a real lunch without something sweet at the end!

Jane: Okay then! You wanna do this? We're game!

Jane: Come on, Ishtarin, let's snag all the bounties they caught for ourselves!

Space Ishtar: Where'd that come from, Jane!? Aw crap, they're already fighting!?

Space Ishtar: Hey you, get under that table and hide! I'm gonna go knock some sense into them!


X: Hiyaaa!

Jane: Hey, batter, batter! If you keep swinging like you're chopping wood, you'll never deflect my attacks!

X: Why you...! I've been holding back since Fujimaru's here, but no more!

X: I'll cut this whole diner down to size if that's what it takes! Don't tell anyone!

Jane: (Huh? Hang on. Is that sword what I think it is!?)

Jane: Hmm. Know what? Real or not, I'm here for it!

Space Ishtar: Will you two stop already!? Take another look at these posters!

Space Ishtar: You just get an error if you look them up in the database! Not to mention our names are misspelled!

Space Ishtar: Isn't it obvious that those fake Saber bandits put them up?

X: Oops.

Jane: Yeah... I guess we have been working this area a lot. You really need to diversify your income, Ishtarin.

Space Ishtar: Hey, what do you expect? You can't just go around NOT claiming bounties when they're there for the taking.

Jane: Really? I don't see the problem.

Space Ishtar: I'm just saying, if I see a gem just lying around, I'm gonna pick it up, end of story. But enough about that!

Space Ishtar: We don't have any bounties on our heads, and there's not a single QP for any of us to gain from this fight, so knock it off already!

Space Ishtar: The only reason someone went to the trouble of making these posters is 'cause we're actually well-known bounty hunters.

Space Ishtar: Our whole deal is catching bad guys, not palling around with them.

X: I see... Sorry about that.

Jane: No worries!

Jane: When you're out in the boonies, duels happen because of tiny misunderstandings all the time!

Jane: Now what say we introduce ourselves right proper this time, yeah? My name's Calamity Jane! Pleasure's mine☆

Space Ishtar: And I'm Ishtar. So who're you guys?

X: Mysterious Heroine X, Saber extraordinaire. And this [♂ strapping young man/♀ vivacious little lady] is–

Fujimaru 1: I'm Fujimaru.

Space Ishtar: Got it. Sorry about dragging you into that. Close-quarter combat doesn't look like your strong suit.

Space Ishtar: You know, you have a real unusual vibe about you. What are you, a Caster? Ooh, or maybe something rarer?

X: Oh, [♂ he's/♀ she's] actually not a Servant at–

Space Mohawk A: No more thinky think! We're back for revenge, bitches!


Space Mohawk A: No more thinky think! We're back for revenge, bitches!

Space Mohawk B: That's [♂ him/♀ her], Bro! [♂ He/♀ She] looks just like the [♂ guy/♀ girl] on the wanted poster!

Jane: Huh? What're you guys doing back here? You leave some of your lead pipes behind or something?

Space Ishtar: Eh, they're probably just here to bail out their buddies. Fine by me. Saves us the trouble of tracking them down.

Mohawk Ace: Hehehe. Now, now, just hear me out, girlies. I got a proposal for you.

Mohawk Ace: I ain't here to bail those weaklings out or to get revenge.

Mohawk Ace: All I want's for you to hand that [♂ guy/♀ girl] over.

Fujimaru 1: Those mohawk guys are looking at me again...

Fujimaru 2: Yeah, I definitely don't want them joining my party.

Mohawk Ace: You hand [♂ him/♀ her] over peacefully, and I'll forget about everything that happened today.

Mohawk Ace: Hell, go ahead and turn those weaklings in for the bounty money while you're at it. Any Saber who'd lose to a damn Assassin is a disgrace anyway.

X: Grr. I couldn't agree more, but hearing it from someone else really pisses me off!

Space Ishtar: Well, I've got a counter proposal. Turn around, go right back the way you came, and you won't get hurt.

Space Ishtar: 'Cause if you think I'd let you abduct someone right in front of us, you've got another thing coming.

Mohawk Ace: Ooh my. I'm sooo scaaared I think I might just cry. Oh well, good thing we're a lawless bunch. Not looking for permission to take what we want.

Space Ishtar: Is that so... (Sigh) I hate a fight with no prospect for profit. Know why?

Space Ishtar: 'Cause they make me so mad, I just can't hold back anymore!

Space Ishtar: Jane!

Jane: On it!

Space Mohawk A: Gaaah! The hell!? How'd that hit the back of my head!?

Space Mohawk B: Oh crap! I didn't realize that Archer was so dangerous! What're we gonna do!?

Mohawk Ace: Keep it together, dipshits! That's Calamity Jane! You've heard about her Dead Man's Hand, haven'tcha!?

Mohawk Ace: There's no way to avoid her bullets, so you just gotta grit your teeth and tough 'em out!

Space Mohawk B: Dead Man's Hand!? I don't like the sound of that!

Space Mohawk B: Crap, crap, crap! What're we gonna do!? I've never even seen a Servant with a True Name before!

Space Ishtar: Yikes, just how backwater IS this planet? Ugh, it all goes back to those damn Saber Badges...

X: I see. So the power of these Saber Badges has lured otherwise good Servants into lives of crime, huh.

X: Well, at least I won't have to feel bad about taking them down!

X: This way, I stop them from committing more crimes, get them to turn over a new leaf, AND reduce the overall Saber population! Three birds, one stone!

X: This is just the kind of battle I needed to shake me out of my pity party!


Mohawk Ace: Dammit... And I was so close to getting my hands on a silver Badge...

Mohawk Ace: Well, if I gotta go, I'm takin' you all with me.

Mohawk Ace: Hehe... Our boss ain't gonna be too happy about you messing with his men.

Mohawk Ace: Tremble in fear when I tell you that he's one of the Six Blades, and he's right here on this planet.

Mohawk Ace: That's right! Our boss is Lord Billy, the Flashing Sword, the man with the quick-draw, one turn-kill Noble Phantasm!

Space Ishtar: !

Mohawk Ace: And that kid there? [♂ He's/♀ She's] got a bounty on [♂ his/♀ her] head direct from the organization. There's gonna be no end of outlaws comin' after [♂ him/♀ her].

Mohawk Ace: There ain't nowhere you can hide now! Heehaha! I'll be seein' you all in the slammer real soon!


X: And that's all the mohawks in the space sheriff's custody. All in a day's work.

X: I have to say, this bounty hunter business is kinda nice!

X: Who knew I could cover my living expenses and Altrium costs with just a bit of fighting!

X: I guess I got some Saber Badges too, but I don't need 'em. Maybe you can find something to do with them.

Fujimaru 1: Thanks, but I'm still hung up on the whole bounty on my head part...

Fujimaru 2: Thanks, but I'm a little more concerned about the bounty on my head...

Space Ishtar: Oh yeah, they did say something about that, didn't they? Did you pick a fight with them or something?

X: Who, those mohawk guys? No, they attacked us first, so we just sent them packing.

Space Ishtar: Not them. I mean the Six Blades'–

Jane: Ishtarin?

Space Ishtar: Ahem. Thanks, Jane. You're right. Got to play your cards close to the chest.

Space Ishtar: Anyway, Fujimaru, having the Six Blades put a bounty on you is some serious business, you know?

Space Ishtar: I'm starting to get really worried here.

Space Ishtar: What in the world did you do? Mind filling us in?

Fujimaru 1: Well...

Space Ishtar: Huh!? You're telling me I kidnapped you under a different name!?

Jane: Wow, Ishtarin, how did you pull that off when we've been together this whole time? I'm impressed!

Space Ishtar: Were you listening!? There's nothing to be impressed about, 'cause I didn't do it!

Space Ishtar: What the hell!? I'm usually a pretty laid-back gal, but nobody slanders me like that and gets away with it!

Space Ishtar: I'm a Servant of justice, dammit! Why would I go around kidnapping people!?

Fujimaru 1: You win, you win!

Fujimaru 2: (This is Ishtar all right. I'd recognize this merciless armlock anywhere...)

X: Hmm. Now that I've had some pudding for dessert and gotten a chance to stop and think–

Jane: Ooh, pudding sounds great right now!

Jane: Here's yours, Fujimaru. How about you, Ishtarin?

Space Ishtar: Well, yeah! You know I love how this place decorates its pudding!

X: Based on what I've observed about you in the short time since we met, you have a strong sense of justice, and you don't really bother with something if there's no money in it for you.

Space Ishtar: I have a few quibbles with the last part of your analysis, but yeah, that's about right otherwise.

X: In which case, this Ashtart Servant must be someone else altogether.

X: After all, there's no money to be made in going all the way to Master's world to kidnap someone.

X: I mean, who would you even send ransom demands to?

Fujimaru 1: Exactly.

Fujimaru 2: You're not wrong, but why's that the first place your mind went?

Space Ishtar: Good point. If someone really did bring you here from another universe, there's no way anyone would come to save–

Space Ishtar: Wait. Did you just say “Master,” X!?

Space Ishtar: Are you telling us this [♂ guy's/♀ girl's] a Master!? Like the kind the Servantverse lost eons ago!?

X: That's right. Fujimaru here is from a universe where Masters are alive and well.

X: Well, usually. At the moment, [♂ he's/♀ she's] the last Master in [♂ his/♀ her] world thanks to, um...things.

X: That said, if the organization [♂ he/♀ she] belongs to succeeds at its goals, there'll soon be more Masters there than you can shake a stick at.

Space Ishtar: So they really do exist... That would mean Father's thesis was right all along.

Space Ishtar: (...A-all right, Ishtar, time to turn up the charm. Bold... Graceful... Beautiful... You can do this!)

Space Ishtar: I-I see. That does explain why they'd be after you, since your kind's been extinct here forever.

Space Ishtar: I bet if I stuffed you and mounted you on a wall, I could sell you for a fortune!

Space Ishtar: I mean, yeah justice is my thing, but who could pass that up? Not me, that's for sure!

Space Ishtar: I mean, Masters aren't even Servants, right? So since you don't have any Servant rights to violate, I could do a-anything I wanted to you.

Space Ishtar: So if that doesn't sound fun to you, then you better tell me everything you know!

Space Ishtar: Unless you want to try fighting me yourself? Can you even use those Command Spells the legends tell about?

Fujimaru 1: (There she goes forcing herself to try and be a bad guy again...)

Fujimaru 2: (Well, this IS Ishtar we're talking about here, so...)

Jane: Hey, Ishtarin? This isn't easy to say, but as your best friend, I'm just gonna be straight with you:

Jane: Seeing you try to act all sexy is like watching a space porcupine trying to tap dance.

Jane: yourself a favor and let me handle that sort of thing, okay?

Space Ishtar: I-I'm not “trying”! I don't have to TRY to be sexy! Now shut up and watch me coax what [♂ he/♀ she] knows out of [♂ him/♀ her] before [♂ he/♀ she] even realizes what's happened!

X: I think you might have the wrong idea here, Space Ishtar. The reason Fujimaru's not telling you anything is because [♂ he/♀ she] doesn't know anything.

X: Masters aren't fonts of knowledge. They provide their value just by existing.

X: So if you're looking for Fujimaru to tell you the secrets of the universe's creation, or where to find untold treasures, I'm afraid you're barking up the wrong rocket.

Space Ishtar: ...You think I don't know that?

Space Ishtar: They say Masters are powerless on their own, but they make Servants even more powerful, right?

Space Ishtar: I was just trying to see if that was true. Though from the look of this one, I'd have to guess it's not.

Space Ishtar: Eh, whatever. I don't even care anymore.

Space Ishtar: You don't have any actual monetary value, right? Fine then, you're free to go.

Fujimaru 1: Much obliged, Space Ishtar.

Fujimaru 2: Thanks, Space Ishtar.

Space Ishtar: ...That's another thing. Why do you keep acting like you already know me?

Space Ishtar: Also, why do you keep adding “Space” to my name? You can just call me Ishtar.

Fujimaru 1: I guess I just want to keep you distinct from the Ishtar I know?

Fujimaru 2: I just want to be able to tell you apart from the Ishtar I know.

Space Ishtar: Hmm, so there's another one of me in your universe and you don't want to confuse us, huh. I can respect that.

Space Ishtar: Fine then, you can call me that if you want. Just don't expect me to ever follow suit.

Space Ishtar: Anyway, let's get down to more profitable matters, shall we?

Space Ishtar: Now that you're caught up in this mess, it's only a matter of time before those mohawk guys come back.

Space Ishtar: Do you have anywhere to go? Or a way to get back to your own world?

Fujimaru 1: Neither.

Fujimaru 2: Nope and nope.

Space Ishtar: Just what I wanted to hear. In that case, why don't you come with us on my ship?

Space Ishtar: It's too dangerous to camp out on this planet, and I'm even willing to be your bodyguard for the right price.

X: You have a spaceship? True, that would be a big help...

Fujimaru 1: Don't have to ask me twice!

Space Ishtar: Excellent. But just to be clear, you're asking me for help, okay?

Fujimaru 2: So I get to ride on Maanna!?

Space Ishtar: How did you know my ship's name!? Wait. Did you get that from my counterpart on your world!?

X: Well, if Fujimaru's okay with it, then I'm happy to go along as well.

X: After all, the more contracted Servants–I mean, bodyguards [♂ he/♀ she] has, the better.

Space Ishtar: Great. Then it's a deal!

Space Ishtar: Okay then, let me introduce myself more properly. I'm Ishtar, galactic bounty hunting badass!

Space Ishtar: I'm definitely NOT Ashtart or Asteroid or whatever this other Servant's name was, so don't get us mixed up.

Space Ishtar: And this is Jane, my partner.

Jane: That's me! I'm a galac–Uh, I mean, just a plain old scout. Nice to meet you!

Fujimaru 1: I'm Fujimaru.

Space Ishtar: Fujimaru, huh. Well, Fujimaru, we'll be keeping you safe for as long as you're on this planet.

Space Ishtar: Which means we'll be taking down the Blade who's in charge of the mohawks.

Space Ishtar: I'm sure those fake Sabers will leave you alone once their boss is out of the picture, so then you won't have to worry about anything, right?

Space Ishtar: So Jane and I'll be your bodyguards until that's done, and you and X there can figure out what to do next afterwards. How's that sound?

X: Hmm. That all sounds good in theory, but what about taking down this Blade? Do you know where to find him?

Jane: Nope! Ishtarin and I've both been looking for him for ages, but so far, no luck.

Jane: But that'll all change now that you're here, Fujimaru!

Jane: With his mohawk goons coming after us, we can keep taking them out and pumping them for information!

Space Ishtar: Oh yeah, it'll be like taking candy from babies, only the babies are lining up to give it to us! We can collect fuel and bounties all at once!

Space Ishtar: Speaking of fuel, do you know what Altrium is, Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: I think so?

Fujimaru 2: I don't think so...

X: Altrium is an amazing substance. It can be used both to make spaceships and to fuel them extremely efficiently.

X: It's one of the universe's best sources of power, though we're not supposed to think too hard about where it comes from or how it works.

Space Ishtar: ...Yeah, it's kind of weird, honestly. We use it all the time, but we still have no idea what it really is.

Space Ishtar: But anyway, Altrium is what our ship runs on, so we'll need to collect it as we go.

Space Ishtar: Once we have enough, we'll drop you guys off at another planet.

Space Ishtar: If its civilization is advanced enough, they might even have a way to get you back to your own universe.

Jane: Great! Then what are we waiting for!?

Jane: Oh, Ishtarin and I already scouted the nearby area, so why don't we expand our search a bit!?

Space Ishtar: Oh, right! I almost forgot to tell you about this!

Space Ishtar: Jane's idea of what's “nearby” is a little closer to what most people think of as “way the hell out there” so be careful where you go with her.

Space Ishtar: Unless, of course, you also happen to think a thousand klicks is within easy walking distance.

Jane: You mean it isn't?

Space Ishtar: Of course not! I swear, where did you grow up? A galaxy where everything moves at a snail's pace!?

Jane: You're one to talk, Ishtarin! I just love walking. That's all!

X: I can't tell if they get along really well or really poorly... You sure we'll be all right going with them?

Fujimaru 1: Eh, it'll all work out!

Fujimaru 2: Definitely! Between the three of you, we've got the strongest party ever!

Section 3: Texas Beyond III

Space Ishtar: Welcome! This is Maanna's cockpit!

Space Ishtar: You two are the first people I've ever let on board besides Jane, so you'd better appreciate it☆

Space Ishtar: And that appreciation can take the form of a bonus once we finish this job☆

X: So this is your ship, huh? I can tell it's a pretty old model...

X: It does have cannons, but it looks like it's also running a time particle accumulation sensor and 4D manipulator...

X: Hmm, I see. So you modified an excavator designed for exploring ruins rather than a fighter.

X: And the cockpit's got two command seats and two crew seats, huh. That works out perfectly!

Jane: Ooh, this is gonna be fun☆

Jane: It's only been me and Ishtarin up till now, so a packed cockpit ought to be a nice change of pace♡

Space Ishtar: If we ever need to discuss strategy again, this is where we'll do it.

Fujimaru 1: We've got a pretty good amount of fuel by now, but...

Space Ishtar: Yeah... We just can't seem to find their boss's hideout anywhere.

Space Ishtar: And I'd really rather not leave any unfinished business behind before we head to the next planet.

Jane: Hmm... Can I go look for him then?

Space Ishtar: Not right now, Jane. It always takes you at least a month to get back from your little recon trips.

Jane: Aww, too bad. It would've been a good chance to check out those ancient ruins.

X: That sounds more like exploring than recon to me.

Space Ishtar: Hey, Fujimaru, I have a question for you.

Space Ishtar: Masters can form contracts with Servants, right?

Space Ishtar: Does that mean you can summon them too? Like, say, could you summon the mohawks' boss here?

Fujimaru 1: You know, Space Ishtar, I gotta hand it to you,I never would have even thought to try that.

X: I'll say. I can't imagine much lazier than summoning your target to your hideout because you can't be bothered to look for them yourself.

X: I like to take it easy sometimes, sure, but even I would never go that far.

Space Ishtar: I-I just wanted to know if it was possible! If it's not, then just say so!

Fujimaru 2: Not in the Servantverse, I'm afraid.

Space Ishtar: Gotcha... Too bad. That would've made this way easier.

Space Ishtar: Oh well, I don't think we could beat him in a straight-up fight anyway. Our best bet's to sneak into his hideout and take him by surprise.

Space Ishtar: Anyway, you're even more useless than I thought, huh? You can't fight, you can't summon...

Space Ishtar: You can't do anything at all. How are you gonna get by when this is all over?

Space Ishtar: ...Oh well, guess that's really not my problem.

X: Hehehe.

Space Ishtar: What? What's with the “Oh, you sweet summer child” laugh?

X: Who, me? I didn't say anything. Besides, it's fine if you think that right now.

Space Ishtar: Hey, I'm not being brutally honest here for kicks. It's to help keep you safe, Fujimaru.

Space Ishtar: The Servantverse has been even more dangerous than usual lately...

Space Ishtar: And there aren't many other bodyguards around like us who... Well, we may not exactly help you out of the goodness of our hearts, but we'll at least faithfully obey the terms of a contract.

Space Ishtar: The way things've been this season, most people would sell you out the moment they meet someone stronger or richer.

Space Ishtar: So since you're weak and powerless, you need to figure out a way to avoid being killed. That's all I'm saying.

Jane: Ooh! I just remembered something that could really help us out!

Jane: Ishtarin, do you remember that Mute tracer we saw in the artifacts the professor found!?

Space Ishtar: You mean my father? Also, what's a Mute tracer?

Jane: You know, that thing you use when you want to find out how much someone else put you on mute!

Jane: It's basically a sensor for detecting how much hate and from where you're getting it at any given moment!

Jane: So if we put that on Fujimaru...

Jane: ...we might be able to find where the mohawks who're after [♂ him/♀ her] are coming from!

Space Ishtar: Damn, I can only imagine how stressed out whoever invented it must've been! Anyway, are we really going to go all the way to Planet Zenjou just for that!?

Jane: We don't have to! I'm pretty sure we've already got it right here on the Maanna!

Jane: I mean, you've always kept valuables and the professor's stuff right where you can see it!

Space Ishtar: Well, yeah, but–

Jane: Let's see, I think it was somewhere around here...

Space Ishtar: Hey, don't just turn the whole place upside down! Who's gonna clean all this up!?

Fujimaru 1: Ishtar's tidying up as quickly as Jane's making a mess...

Fujimaru 2: Now that's teamwork!

Jane: Found it! Here, Fujimaru, put this on!

Jane: This should tell us where whoever's trying to get you is coming from!

Space Ishtar: ...Well? Is it working?

Fujimaru 1: I can feel them... I can feel the threads of fate!

Fujimaru 2: Now I get it... Muting and blocking are actually...!

Space Ishtar: H-hey, are you okay!? Are your eyes supposed to be spinning around like that!?

Jane: Don't worry, Ishtarin! It's only temporary☆

Jane: Now, do you think you can use that device to pick up [♂ his/♀ her] brain waves?

Space Ishtar: Ohh, yeah! Once we convert [♂ his/♀ her] brain waves into data, then we ought to be able to trace them.

Space Ishtar: Just gimme a sec. There, I'm in! There's one big marker and one little marker on the interstellar map...

Space Ishtar: The little one's here on this planet, so that must be where the mohawks' boss is hiding out!

Jane: Yay! Then that's our destination! Come on, let's go take down this boss right now!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Lady Ashtart, you have an incoming transmission from Texas Beyond.

Ashtart: Put it through.

E:???: That you, boss? Heya! This here's Billy the Flashing Sword!

Billy: Didja like the surprise I sent ya for your birthday?

Billy: Y'know, the box with the chrysalises from all 'cross the universe I had delivered a week later...

Billy: that ya'd open it up ta see a whole buncha beautiful butterflies fly out?

Ashtart: Ah yes, I remember. It would have been a lovely present... if they had actually been butterflies and not moths.

Billy: Aw crap.

F:Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Khh hooh... Khh hooh... (Stifling laughter)

Ashtart: I've sent you two thousand Dislikes.

Ashtart: I suggest you practice stopping swords with your bare hands before we meet again.

Billy: Yikes... Guess I ain't gonna be visitin' Dark Maanna again anytime soon.

Billy: Ah well, that's all right. Life out here on the interplanetary prairie suits me better anyhow!

Billy: Anyways, y'know that new wanted [♂ man/♀ woman] y'all sent out that poster about? Well, it looks like my mohawks found [♂ him/♀ her].

Billy: Unfortunately, it looks like [♂ he/♀ she] also hired some bodyguards that've been sendin' my boys packin' whenever they try an' catch [♂ him/♀ her].

Billy: So now that my mohawks are close ta bein' wiped out, I figured it might be time for me ta take a crack at [♂ him/♀ her] myself.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I see. So [♂ he/♀ she] landed on Texas Beyond. This is very good luck, Lady Ashtart.

Ashtart: Stop that, Munenori. I'm trying to run a respectable evil organization here. You're supposed to say “bad luck.”

Billy: Yeah, so, aaanyways, I just gotta catch this here Master [♂ fellow/♀ gal], is that right?

Billy: Y'all mind if I just go ahead and kill [♂ his/♀ her] bodyguards then?

Ashtart: Bodyguards...

Ashtart: Of course, you can dispose of them how you like. You don't need to run decisions like that past me.

Ashtart: All I care about is the Master. Just take [♂ him/♀ her] alive and send [♂ him/♀ her] to Maanna ASAP.

Billy: That so. All right, I'll handle the details on my end then. Oh, and I'll go ahead and send Lord Munenori the data while I'm at it.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Much obliged. We're trusting you to handle this matter in a timely fashion.

Billy: Roger that! All right then, I'mma kill those bodyguards 'fore they even know what shot 'em!

Billy: Glory to Space Shinkageryu and the goddess of evil!


X: There we go. Silent, quick, and deadly... That should take care of the lookouts, Master.

X: We didn't give them any time to call for backup, so I doubt the others have any idea we're here.

Space Ishtar: I never would've guessed they were using a limestone cave down in a valley as a hideout. How's the inside looking, Jane?

Jane: Hmm, there sure are a lot of them. I definitely wouldn't want to fight them all directly.

Fujimaru 1: What about a diversion?

Jane: Ooh, that could work!

Jane: These mohawk guys aren't exactly brave, so once we take out their boss, I bet they'll all scatter like cockroaches!

Fujimaru 2: This might be your time to shine, Ms. X.

X: Leave it to me! I'll sneak up and pick off the boss before they know what hit 'em, like any Saber would!

X: Well, normally I would be done with them and back here already...

X: But for some reason, my heart just isn't in it this time. Are you sure this boss is really a Saber?

Space Ishtar: All right then, let's split up.

Space Ishtar: You three stay here and get everyone's attention while I sneak in and take out their boss.

X: All by yourself? Are you sure? Sneaking into places like this is what my Saber Ninja Arts were made for, you know?

Space Ishtar: Don't worry, I'll be fine. I'm good at sneaking into places myself, and I've gotten out of plenty of spots tighter than this.

Space Ishtar: All right then, see you guys later! Don't worry, Fujimaru, I'll be back with good news soon!

Jane: So much for talking things out. What do we do now, Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: ...Would you two mind handling this part by yourselves?

Jane: 'Course not! She might not look like it, but trust me, Ishtarin always goes all out with whatever she does!

Jane: Knowing you're there to keep her from getting in over her head would be a real weight off my shoulders!


A:???: Hooboy! You ain't half bad, bounty hunter! Ain't many who can defend 'gainst my sword flashes like that!

A:???: Where'd ya even learn to swing a sword like that? It's naggin' at me so dang much I can hardly concentrate!

Space Ishtar: Sword flashes!? You're just firing a revolver, jackass! Are you sure you're really one of the Six Blades!?

A:???: Sure am. The big boss gave me a gold Saber Badge herself!

A:???: 'Course, I only swore loyalty an' took it after she beat me, and it was either that or die.

A:???: Y'know, I can still hardly believe that a li'l old Archer like me can be a Saber just by puttin' on this here badge.

A:???: Honestly, it ticks me off that our boss is forcing us to keep this ridiculous game of pretend going.

A:???: That's why I'm reeeal curious who ya learned your swordfightin' from...

A:???: ...seein' how it's exactly like the boss's.

A:???: Was it Lord Munenori? Though I don't see where he could've found the time to teach someone else...

Space Ishtar: Nobody taught me!

Space Ishtar: I came up with this style all on my own just so I could take you damn Space Shinkageryu down myself!

A:???: Whew, that was close!

A:???: Gotcha. So y'ain't never had a teacher, huh. Then I guess that style o' yours must just be improvised.

A:???: All right, in that case, I'm through playin' 'round. I'd better finish ya off 'fore ya wake up for real.

A:???: For the record, I am one of the Six Blades, the Flashing Sword. But y'all can call me Billy the Flash.

Billy the Flash: Though to be honest, my speed's really all I got goin' for me.

Space Ishtar: !?

C:Space Ishtar: Ghh...!

C:Space Ishtar: Was that your Noble Phantasm!? How the hell did you shoot that fast without moving or loading your gun!? That kind of speed shouldn't even be possible!

Billy the Flash: Well dang, you're still alive after I hit ya?

Billy the Flash: I knew sacrificin' power for speed is my biggest weakness an' all, but that don't explain it.

Billy the Flash: You really ain't a normal Servant, are ya? Guess I've gotta blast your head as well as your heart.

C:Space Ishtar: (I don't believe it. He's going to use another Noble Phantasm so quickly!? There's no way I can keep up with that kind of speed!)

Fujimaru 1: Hold it right there!

C:Space Ishtar: Fujimaru!? What're you doing here!? I thought I told you to wait for me!

Billy the Flash: Well now, so you're the Master all this ruckus is about? Ahaha, well ain't that a kick in the teeth. Turns out you ain't nothin' to be scared of.

Billy the Flash: Mighty kind of ya to turn yourself in like this. Sorry I gotta return the favor by blastin' your legs off, but I can't have ya runnin' away. Nothin' personal.

Billy the Flash: I ain't usually in the habit of shootin' visitors from other universes, but the boss was reeeal clear about bringin' you in alive, and I ain't 'bout ta get on her bad side.

Billy the Flash: Whatever Lady Ashtart wants ta sacrifice ya for, it's obviously real important ta her.

Billy the Flash: If ya don't like it, y'all can take it up with the boss after ya wake up.

C:Space Ishtar: Oh no you don't!

Billy the Flash: Dayum. I'm impressed you can still move with a gut fulla lead. Not that it's gonna do ya much good now.

Billy the Flash: There still ain't no way you can beat me, let alone save the little [♂ cowpoke/♀ lady] there.

Billy the Flash: And of course, there ain't no way [♂ he's/♀ she's] gettin' outta here, and no way [♂ he/♀ she] can help you out neither.

Billy the Flash: But if y'all don't wanna accept you've been checkmated just yet, ain't much I can do about it.

Fujimaru 1: You're wrong.

Fujimaru 1: This isn't even close to over!

Billy the Flash: !

Space Ishtar: No way... Did you just instantly heal me!? Was that one of the legendary “Command Spells”!?

Fujimaru 1: How do you like them apples!?

Fujimaru 2: (Give a thumbs up)

Space Ishtar: Okay, okay, no need to be so smug! Besides, I can see your knees knocking from here!

Space Ishtar:'re right. I can definitely win now! All right, Fujimaru, I'm counting on you for support!

Space Ishtar: Those Command Spells of yours can replenish magical energy too, right!? Then let's fight speed with speed!

Space Ishtar: Now help me finish this before he can use his Noble Phantasm again!

Billy the Flash: Tch...! This ain't lookin' too good for us, Thunderer! Don't fail me now!

Billy the Flash: We've gotta settle this with a Noble Phantasm twofer!


Billy the Flash: Gaaah! Was that a whole other universe!?

Billy the Flash: The hell just happened!?

Space Ishtar: I can't believe it... We just beat one of the Six Blades in a straight fight...

Fujimaru 1: We sure did!

Fujimaru 2: Way to go, Space Ishtar!

Space Ishtar: ...Yeah. Yeah! We won, we won, WE WOOON!!!

Space Ishtar: This is amazing! WE'RE amazing! I couldn't have done it without your support, Master!

X: Hey guys! We sent the mohawks packing, so now we– Well, well, what do we have here?

X: Are you really holding Fujimaru's hands and hopping up and down like a madwoman, Ishtar?

X: Something must have you awfully happy.

Jane: Sure looks like it! But why stop at hopping? If you're that happy, just go ahead and hug [♂ him/♀ her]! Go on, girl!

Space Ishtar: ...!

Space Ishtar: ...Ahem. That was, um... How do I put this...?

Space Ishtar: No, hang on. First, I need to apologize for what I said earlier.

Space Ishtar: I'm sorry I called you useless before, Fujimaru. I couldn't have been more wrong.

Space Ishtar: You're very brave, and it's got nothing to do with you being a Master.

Space Ishtar: I could never have beaten Billy without you. Thanks for bailing me out.

Fujimaru 1: Right back at you.

Fujimaru 2: Whoa. I'm not used to an Ishtar being so, um...straightforward.

Space Ishtar: Wh-what!? Just how awful is the Ishtar you know!?

Space Ishtar: (Anyway, all that aside...)

Space Ishtar: (I had no idea Masters could make Servants this strong...)

Space Ishtar: (I might have to reconsider just letting [♂ him/♀ her] walk away when all this is over...)

Jane: Hey! I know that face, Ishtarin! You're thinking up ways to get rich quick, aren't you?

Space Ishtar: Wh-who, me? Of course not!

Space Ishtar: Anyway, let's hurry up and grab their stuff before anyone can stop us!

Space Ishtar: This is the mohawks' hideout, right? Then they must have plenty of Altrium tucked away.

Space Ishtar: But most importantly, we can get Billy here to tell us all about their organization. Isn't that right, Billy?

Billy the Flash: Shit! I didn't think y'all'd notice me leavin'!

Jane: Well, we did! So you're Billy, huh? Come over here and let's have a nice little chat, old pal!

Billy the Flash: What the...!? Old pal!? Aren't ya bein' a little too buddy-buddy alluva sudden?

Space Ishtar: Jane's always been weird when it comes to both literal and figurative distance. It's what lets her make friends with just about anyone.

Space Ishtar: Me, on the other hand... Let's just say I'm not the forgiving type. Now, is what you said earlier true?

Billy the Flash: Which part?

Space Ishtar: The part where you said someone named Ashtart wants to sacrifice Fujimaru.

Space Ishtar: I'm guessing that's the name of Space Shinkageryu's boss?

Fujimaru 1: (I'm pretty sure I never mentioned Shinkageryu before...)

Fujimaru 2: (How did Space Ishtar know about them...?)

Billy the Flash: Ohhh, that. I musta been so caught up in the battle I didn't even realize I was runnin' my mouth.

Billy the Flash: You got it. Space Shinkageryu wants to use that there Master for some kinda ritual.

Billy the Flash: Least, that's what the boss's right-hand man says. I don't know what Lady Ashtart might really be up to.

X: Hmm, a ritual that sacrifices a Master, huh... There's so many possibilities it's hard to narrow them down.

X: But since Masters haven't lived in this universe since ancient times, I'd guess the ritual itself must be something only an archaeologist would know.

Space Ishtar: So where is Ashtart...this leader of yours?

Billy the Flash: Beats me. It looked like she was headin' somewhere in her space fortress, but that's all I know.

Billy the Flash: I'd expect the little [♂ cowpoke/♀ lady] over there oughta have a better idea than I do.

Fujimaru 1: I think she said something about going to a forbidden zone...

Space Ishtar: I see. Thanks for the hot tip.

Space Ishtar: Of course, that doesn't really help us much, seeing how there's dozens upon dozens of forbidden zones in the Servantverse, but I guess it's better than nothing. Barely.

Space Ishtar: Well, at least we know now that this Ashtart lady's the one who brought Fujimaru to our universe...

Space Ishtar: ...and that she's the boss of Space Shinkageryu.

Space Ishtar: It would only make sense for her to know how to get you back home, since she brought you here in the first place. Obviously she's got a way.

Fujimaru 1: You know, that's an excellent point! Good thinking!

Space Ishtar: Well of course♡ I haven't been a bounty hunter since I was fourteen for nothing, after all☆

Fujimaru 2: I knew you'd come through, Space Ishtar the hero!

Space Ishtar: M-me, a hero...?

Space Ishtar: Uh, y-yeah, that's me. Ishtar the bounty hunter, friend to justice and money everywhere.

Billy the Flash: We all done talkin' now? 'Cause if so, I'd like to make y'all a deal.

Billy the Flash: Ishtar, you're lookin' for all the Six Blades, ain'tcha? Now, now, don't be shocked. You got more bloodlust than a starvin' coyote.

Billy the Flash: If ya let me go, I'd be willin' ta give ya the boardin' codes for the Dark Maanna Space Fortress.

Billy the Flash: It'd let you walk right into Space Shinkageryu's headquarters without so much as a “How d'ya do?” Whatcha say to that?

Space Ishtar: You'd just sell your boss out like that?

Billy the Flash: I ain't sellin' shit. I'm just as sure as the sunrise that she can beat you and take that there Master back no problem.

Billy the Flash: Either way, it ain't got nothin' ta do with me no more. I'm gettin' outta Space Shinkageryu for good.

Billy the Flash: I don't got no reason to hang onto this Saber Badge, and there ain't no way Lord Munenori'd let me stick around now that I've lost anyway.

Billy the Flash: So, whadda ya say? Seems like a pretty good deal to me, given what you're ultimately workin' towards.

Space Ishtar: ...It's not up to me. Fujimaru's the one you tried to capture, so [♂ he/♀ she] should be the one to decide.

Space Ishtar: What do you think, Fujimaru? Do we let him go, or tie him up and leave him to rot in the desert?

Fujimaru 1: The more information we have, the better.

Fujimaru 2: As long as he promises to behave himself from now on...

Billy the Flash: That's that then. Here you go, one boardin' pass for Dark Maanna.

Billy the Flash: Now then, the Space Shinkageryu don't take too kindly to deserters, so I'd better make myself scarce.

Billy the Flash: Y'all do know what you're gettin' into, right? 'Cause they ain't gonna be goin' easy on y'all now that you beat me.

Billy the Flash: Ah well, ain't my problem. Good luck!

X: Space Shinkageryu, huh. That's one heck of an evil organization.

Fujimaru 1: They're that bad?

X: Oh yeah. They've got their hands in all sorts of evil pies, no matter how big or how small.

X: They're also really secretive. So much so that these mohawk guys probably didn't even know they were working for them.

X: That probably goes for all the Servants fighting over those Saber Badges, really.

X: They have no idea that getting one of those badges means they've effectively joined Space Shinkageryu.

Fujimaru 1: That really is devious...

Fujimaru 2: Sounds like the sorta thing she'd come up with...

Space Ishtar: ...

Space Ishtar: Hey, Fujimaru. I know I said we'd keep you safe for as long as you're on this planet...

Space Ishtar: ...but would you mind if, amended my statement?

Fujimaru 1: What sort of amendment?

Fujimaru 2: What'd you have in mind?

Space Ishtar: Like, say, protecting you until you can return safely to your own universe.

Space Ishtar: I mean, the Space Shinkageryu themselves are after you, right?

Space Ishtar: With all the wanted criminals that are bound to come after you, it'll be bounty heaven.

Space Ishtar: You can pay me a fair rate for my services, and the bounties ought to pay for any expenses incurred.

Space Ishtar: Basically, you scratch my back, I scratch yours.

Space Ishtar: What do you say? Of course, if you're not thrilled with the idea of being bait, I'll understand.

Fujimaru 1: Being bait's fine with me!

Fujimaru 2: Sounds perfect!

Space Ishtar: ...(Sigh) I had a feeling you wouldn't even have to think about it.

Space Ishtar: You're either way more experienced with life-threatening danger than you look, or you're too trusting for your own good...

Space Ishtar: Oh well. We both have our reasons for being here, so let's keep helping each other out!

Space Ishtar: You good with this, Jane?

Jane: You bet! Besides, it would go against my pioneer spirit to leave a hapless traveler to fend for [♂ himself/♀ herself]!

X: I'll come too, of course.

X: Technically, I'm still Fujimaru's mentor, after all.

Space Ishtar: Fine by me! Then let's blast off from this planet as soon as we're stocked up on Altrium!

Space Ishtar: Oh, but remember, we're still only your bodyguards, so you'll be the one calling the shots, Master!

Section 4: Tour Manual

Space Ishtar: Okay, now that we've left Texas Beyond, let's make sure we're all on the same page for what comes next.

Space Ishtar: In order to get Fujimaru back to [♂ his/♀ her] original universe...

Space Ishtar: ...we need to capture the head of the Space Shinkageryu, a Servant called Ashtart.

Space Ishtar: Apparently, Space Shinkageryu's headquarters have already left for a forbidden zone...

Space Ishtar: ...but we at least have an idea where they went thanks to the Mute tracer.

Space Ishtar: That would be this area here on the interstellar map.

Fujimaru 1: How far away are we from there?

Jane: Oh, only about two thousand light-years!

Jane: Don't worry, it's super close! We can get there in about five max range warp jumps, tops!

Fujimaru 2: It seems weirdly,

X: Yeah... There should be way too much ether in this universe for it to be that red.

X: In the Servantverse, blue usually symbolizes order, and red usually symbolizes demons, so it seems very unlikely that this zone was forbidden because it was just too nice.

Space Ishtar: ...Yeah, that's definitely a long ways. We'll need to restock on equipment as we go.

Jane: Not to mention Altrium☆ We'll have to keep collecting bounties so we can pay for fuel as we go!

Space Ishtar: Yup. And luckily, we should have our pick of bounties, since there's bound to be plenty coming after Fujimaru.

X: Hmm. Like the unidentified ship that's coming up directly behind us right now?

Space Ishtar: Huh?

Jane: Oops, sorry! I just noticed we have a radar contact!

Jane: There's a battleship from Texas Beyond making a jump straight towards us! Must be the rest of the mohawks!

Jane: And I'm getting a Servant reading right behind the Maanna, too!

Space Ishtar: Damn, they just don't know when to give up, do they!?

Space Ishtar: All right, Master, we're going to step outside to fend them off.

Space Ishtar: I know this'll be your first space walk, but think you can come help us deal with them?

Fujimaru 1: S-s-s-s-sure th-th-th-thing.

Fujimaru 2: N-n-n-n-no p-p-p-problem.

Space Ishtar: ...

Jane: Stop that, Ishtarin! You shouldn't be getting off on watching someone quiver in terror!

Space Ishtar: D-don't be silly! Wh-why would that get me excited!?

Space Ishtar: A-anyway, make sure you put on a tether before you leave the ship!

Space Ishtar: If things start looking dicey, we'll be counting on you to help us out with those incredible Command Spells!


Fujimaru 1: Th-th-that was terrifying!!!

Space Ishtar: ... (Damn, [♂ he/♀ she] really is scared, isn't [♂ he/♀ she]...)

Fujimaru 2: That. Was. AWESOME! I WENT TO SPACE, GUYS!!!

Jane: Right? Right!?

Jane: There's nothing more fun than looking down and remembering one misstep could send you hurtling into an endless abyss!

X: Huh, I wonder what this stone tablet-looking thing that last mohawk was carrying could be.

X: I've been pressing it all over, but it doesn't seem to be doing anything...

D:???: Allow me to explain. Those are the Goddess Scriptures.

D:???: As you surely know, a great many legends of goddesses have been passed down throughout the Servantverse...

D:???: But here is what you might not know: that tablet there is the result of a professor at the Space Clock Tower, the greatest academic institution known to Servantkind...

D:???: ...taking it upon themself to decipher, compile, edit, translate, self-publish, and distribute those legends throughout the entire Servantverse.

Fujimaru 1: !?

Fujimaru 2: Wh-wh-why is there a talking BRAIN!?

Space Ishtar: What in the galaxy is that!? I don't remember the Maanna coming with anything like that.

Jane: Ohhh, so that's what the manual was talking about!

Jane: It's an expository device called Talkie that only pops up under oddly specific circumstances.

Jane: The manual also said Talkie's designed to seem like it uses a conversational interface, but it's actually just playing back pre-recorded audio at appropriate moments!

D:???: Indeed. My name is Talkie, and I was made just for this day.

Talkie: Foreign traveler, I urge you to make time to collect more Goddess Scriptures.

Talkie: Once you have collected enough, I will provide you with more knowledge about the Servantverse.

Talkie: I can also help you manage all sorts of things in more minute detail...

Talkie: ...such as the various rewards you can earn and bounties you can find.

Talkie: I doubt Jane will be of much help with those, since she isn't really much of a thinker.

Jane: Hey! How come Mr. Brain-in-a-Jar is only throwing shade at me!?

Talkie: My name is Talkie, and I was made just for this day.

Talkie: Collect the Goddess Scriptures. There, you will find all the answers you seek.

Space Ishtar: Well, there's a function I didn't know the Maanna had. Huh, guess I really should've read the instruction manual after all...

X: I get it. When it's your first spaceship, you spend hours poring over the specs 'cause you're just so excited, but by your second, you just want to get on and start cruising the stars.

X: Anyway, pretty lucky that this ship turned out to have a helpful feature you didn't even know about, huh?

Space Ishtar: True. These Goddess Scriptures might not be worth much, but I guess we should keep an eye out for them where we can.

Space Ishtar: Now then, we've still got a long way to go to reach the forbidden zone, so we'd better get a move on!

Section 5: Big Blue Tank I

Jane: Okay Ishtarin, I set the ship to autopilot.

Space Ishtar: Thanks, Jane. What do you say we all take a little break then?

Fujimaru 1: That planet's so big and blue!

Fujimaru 2: That planet is beautiful!

Jane: Huh. I've never been to this part of the Servantverse before, so this might be my first time seeing it too.

Jane: Let me see... Hey, Talkie, what kind of planet is this?

Talkie: Planet Name: Big Blue Tank Primary Industry: Liquefied Gas

Talkie: A gas giant, Big Blue Tank is named for its external resemblance to ancient spherical gas tanks.

Talkie: Among the space nomads who live on nearby asteroids and satellites, it is also known as “The Goddess's Brooch.”

Jane: A goddess's brooch, huh? She must've been crazy huge to wear a whole planet around her neck.

Fujimaru 1: “Tank,” huh. Not very imaginative.

Fujimaru 2: Probably shoulda just gone with “Jewel” there.

Space Ishtar: (Sigh)... If only there really was a jewel that big.

X: That would be neat and all, but it couldn't be very valuable if there was that much of it to go around.

Space Ishtar: Sure, I'd have no complaints at all if it was worth a ton of credits too...

Space Ishtar: But there's just something romantic about the idea of a jewel the size of a planet, don't you think?

Space Ishtar: The things society at large deems valuable are important and all, but what's most important are the things you value personally, right?

Space Ishtar: When you find something and its beauty really speaks to you, you've gotta hang onto it. A designer label can't possibly take the place of that.

Space Ishtar: Take Fujimaru's glowing impression of that planet, for example. It was the most innocent thing I've heard in ages.

X: Hehe. I'm surprised you're such a romantic, Ishtar.

Space Ishtar: And why should that be so surprising, exactly?

Space Ishtar: Anyway, Talkie said it's a gas giant, right? Well, we can't land on a planet that's just one giant ball of gas now, can we?

X: Oh yeah, good point. And if we can't land on it, we can't make camp for the night there either!

Space Ishtar: Forget about making camp. If we get caught in its gravitational field, we might never make it back out.

Space Ishtar: Like they say, the prettier the planet, the graver the danger. Anyway, there's no reason for us to stop there, so let's just keep on moving.

Space Ishtar: That said, one thing we can do is use Big Blue's gravity to conserve warp fuel. Jane?

Jane: On it! Plotting Maanna's course to slingshot around the planet as we speak☆

Fujimaru 1: What do you mean, slingshot?

Jane: I mean we're gonna use Big Blue's gravitational field to swing us around and give us more momentum!

Jane: Do they do hammer throws in your universe? It's just like that, only the Maanna's the hammer! Like bwam, boom, pwah! Get it!?

Space Ishtar: Never mind Jane's attempts at an explanation. Just make sure you're strapped in.

Space Ishtar: This cockpit's gravity controller's a cheap piece of junk, so if you're not buckled up tight, you're gonna get intimately acquainted with the wall in a sec.

X: So where are we warping to? Guess it's too much to hope we can jump straight to the forbidden zone, huh?

Jane: Unfortunately. The Maanna's a pretty old ship, so it just can't warp very far.

Fujimaru 1: Really? It's old?

Fujimaru 2: Looks brand-new to me.

Jane: That's 'cause Ishtarin takes really good care of all her stuff!

Jane: I know she acts like a rough and tumble cowgirl, but she's actually more of a dainty dreamer at heart!

Space Ishtar: Oh for... Our ship looking new has nothing to do with how I take care of my stuff. It's 'cause we can't keep anything for more than a month before you get bored and toss it.

Space Ishtar: If I didn't know better, I'd think you just never had any material attachments.

Jane: Hmm... Maybe I don't.

Jane: I just don't feel right hanging on to more than the bare minimum of stuff I need. I guess it's a habit from my space scout days?

Space Ishtar: Well, for someone claiming to be a minimalist, you sure like to make new modifications to my ship without asking permission.

Jane: Hey, I always tell you what I'm gonna do before I do it! And I don't mess with that much stuff anyway!

Jane: All I've done is boost the engine and the nav systems, improve fire control, and reinforce the ship's hull!!

Jane: Besides that and the cabin expansion, there isn't any... Oh, right, I almost forgot about the consumables. I use plenty of those in secret☆

Space Ishtar: (Sigh) That's pretty much half the ship right there...

Space Ishtar: Is that the Space Shinkageryu!?

Jane: Can't be! I'm not seeing any Altrium readings on the radar or other spaceship lights outside the–

X: We're taking fire from three and seven o'clock! But it's not laser fire...

X: It's...arrows. From Archers...

Space Ishtar: Arrows in space!? What the actual hell!?

Jane: Oh man, no wonder I didn't see anything on the radar!

Jane: They're using a bunch of space oxen and space horses!

X: Now I see. Then we must be in space nomad territory.

Fujimaru 1: Did you say space...nomads?

X: I did. I've heard they keep to themselves as long as no one strays into their territory...

X: ...but the way they're coming after us now, I can only guess we're in pretty deep.

Space Ishtar: So they're not part of Space Shinkageryu? Then we ought to be able to reason with them.

Space Ishtar: Hey! Stop that, dammit!

Space Ishtar: Maanna's armor isn't thick enough to handle that much fire!

Fujimaru 1: It's not?

Fujimaru 2: Why not?

Space Ishtar: You have to ask? Because it's hideous!

Fujimaru 1: ...

X: Huh?

Space Ishtar: Ah.

Jane: Oh yeah, I almost forgot! External modifications are the one thing Ishtarin always notices right away!

Jane: And she absolutely refuses to move the ship an inch until I put everything back the way it was.

Space Ishtar: I-it's not that! It's because the added weight and reduced space aerodynamics seriously reduce the light-yearage!

Jane: Oh hey, we're getting a transmission. I'll put it up on the main monitor.

E:???: Hold it right there, Servants of bad civilization. I am Altera, the great king of the shooting star people.

E:Altera: This planet is our goddess's jewel–her brooch. We forbid you from approaching any closer.

Space Ishtar: You're a space nomad? Listen, this is all a big misunderstanding. We're not trying to go to this planet at all.

Space Ishtar: We're just passersby who want to borrow its gravity for a little slingshot boost.

Space Ishtar: Could you maybe call off your attack for the moment?

E:Altera: I refuse. You are all surely part of that foul organization. Now, my rainbow sword shall put an end to your wicked natures!

E:Altera: Besides, I can sense an immense evil emanating from your ship.

E:Altera: No doubt you lot are also going around fighting others for Saber Badges to line your pockets and fill your bellies.

E:Altera: I'm guessing you're kin to some fallen goddess? You should be ashamed of yourselves for succumbing so completely to capitalist avarice. I think it's time you lost some of that wealth.

X: Did she just swing her sword at us from way out there!? I can't believe she's got that kind of reach!

X: That's no fake Saber, Fujimaru! She's the real deal, and as premium as they come!

Space Ishtar: Ugh, dammit! I wasn't planning on fighting anyone who isn't part of Space Shinkageryu, but now I'm PISSED!

Space Ishtar: I'm going out there to give her a piece of my mind!

Jane: Ishtarin!? All right, I'll hit the brakes and turn us around!

Jane: X, you handle the controls for a while, okay!? Come on, let's go, Fujimaru!

Space Ishtar: Hey! Who do you think you are, scratching my ship like that!?

Altera: That's what you came to tell me? Hah!

Altera: You've got a lot of nerve being angry about a scratch...

Altera: ...after your Space Shinkageryu allies drove that accursed stake into the heart of this holy planet to steal its blessings!

Jane: Huh!?

Space Ishtar: !!!

Space Ishtar: Hold it! Did you just say Space Shinkageryu!?

Altera: Well, no more. I'm going to return you all to space dust and offer you up to the great shooting star.

Altera: For it is the great shooting star's teaching that all civilizations must be reset.

Space Ishtar: So you really are refusing to listen to reason, huh? Okay then, you leave me no choice.

Space Ishtar: Stand back, Fujimaru! I'm going to make her calm down and listen to us, one way or another!


Altera: ...So you truly aren't part of the Space Shinkageryu?

Space Ishtar: Hell no! In fact, we were just on our way to take them all down!

Altera: You want to take Space Shinkageryu down? I find it hard to believe such a thing is even possible...

Altera: But very well. For the moment, I will hear what you have to say, retro-futuristic Servant.

Space Ishtar: (Retro-futuristic...?)

Space Ishtar: I-I'm not really sure what you mean by that, but thanks. And I'm sorry we barged into your territory without asking permission.

Space Ishtar: Anyway, is it true that there are Servants from Space Shinkageryu on this planet?

Altera: It is. And not only outside the planet, but inside it as well. Take a look at that.

Fujimaru 1: There's a giant rod stuck in the planet...

Fujimaru 2: Is that the stake you mentioned?

C:X: That looks like...the top part of a space elevator? We're close enough now that I can tell it's huge.

Altera: The Space Shinkageryu have been making off with fragments of the Goddess's Jewel from the head of that stake.

Space Ishtar: Hey, Jane! Didn't you say this planet's only export was condensed gas?

Jane: That's what Talkie said, at least.

Space Ishtar: ...Then something doesn't add up. That's way too much equipment just for shipping out gas.

Space Ishtar: They wouldn't be able to sell it quickly enough to offset the cost of upkeep, let alone make a profit.

Space Ishtar: So what's going on?

Altera: Heh. There used to be many more of those wretched stakes before we destroyed them. We enjoyed that part a lot.

Altera: Unfortunately, that last one is much bigger than the others, and it's also guarded much more heavily.

Altera: Whenever we try to get close, they run and hide in the planet's cloud cover, where we can't go after them.

Fujimaru 1: Does that mean their base is inside the planet?

Fujimaru 2: Why can't you go after them?

Altera: Our people are forbidden from approaching the holy planet. If we did so, we would risk incurring the goddess's wrath and being trapped in a sea of ice for all of time.

Jane: So your goddess gets angry at you? Like Ishtarin angry?

Space Ishtar: And just what the heck is that supposed to mean? How is my anger different from anyone else's!?

Space Ishtar: Besides, it's not like I go around flying off the handle at every little slight.

Space Ishtar: And only a seriously evil goddess would doom someone to an icy eternity just because they passed by too closely.

Space Ishtar: No, if this goddess is real, she should never let anyone mess with her jewels like this.

Space Ishtar: Seems to me like this one needs to reexamine her priorities.

C:X: I don't think that's it, Ishtar. I'm pretty sure that's just the nomads' way of saying that it's dangerous to get too close to the planet.

C:X: Their ships don't have powerful enough engines–or sturdy enough hulls for that matter–to escape the planet's gravity well.

C:X: So they tell the young nomads not to get too close lest they incur the goddess's wrath.

Fujimaru 1: Are you eating pudding again, Ms. X?

C:X: Shush! It's not like I HAVE to have something sweet to perform coolheaded analysis!

C:X: Though yes, since I didn't get to do anything in that battle, I AM downing it by the four-pack as we speak!

Jane: Really? Then would teatime be a good time for chitchat?

C:X: You bet! I've always wanted to do girl talk and tea!

Space Ishtar: (So there's a Space Shinkageryu base on that planet... Which means there's a chance that swordfighter is there...)

Space Ishtar: ...Hey, Altera.

Space Ishtar: Just because you guys can't go there doesn't mean we can't, right?

Altera: It's not that simple. Just letting you go there would set a poor example for the new nomads, after all.

Altera: That being said... You have certainly proven that you are not our enemy, and that your bravery rivals ours.

Altera: If you were to demonstrate your bravery even further, we could be willing to look the other way if you were to visit the Goddess's Brooch.

Space Ishtar: Ahh, I got you. It must be tough, being a leader in your position.

Space Ishtar: All right then, if we get rid of the Space Shinkageryu people hanging around above the planet first...

Space Ishtar: ...that should prove that we're brave enough to go to the planet itself, right?

Altera: Glad to see you're paying attention. I'm reminded of a clever man who visited here once some time ago.

Altera: Very well then. Once you have proven your bravery, we can let you visit the Goddess's Brooch.

Altera: But be warned, we will be watching you closely. If you should betray us, we will not warn you again.

Space Ishtar: Phew... Thank goodness we managed to work something out.

Space Ishtar: So on that note... I hate to ask, but would you guys mind if we made a little pit stop?

Fujimaru 1: Hey, we can't turn our backs on them now.

Fujimaru 2: Hey, we needed fuel and info anyway, right?

X: Right you are. Only cowards would run away without helping these people now, and we're definitely not cowards!

Space Ishtar: Thanks, guys. So how are things looking with the Space Shinkageryu, Jane?

Jane: It's just like Altera said. They're all hanging out near the space elevator.

Jane: This is great! We can stock up on Altrium and kick some Space Shinkageryu ass all at the same time!

X: Got it. Then I'll put Maanna on autopilot and set it to remain in geostationary orbit.

X: This way, you'll be able to head out whenever you want. If there's anything else I can help with, just let me know!

X: Trust me, it's been a dream come true getting to take down Sabers without worrying about the legalities!

Fujimaru 1: (So she did know it was illegal to try and kill them...)

Fujimaru 2: (It's great to see Ms. X acting like her old self again!)

Space Ishtar: Will do! All right then, let's get this cleanup operation started, shall we!?

Section 6: Big Blue Tank II

???: Oh my... It's hard to believe Billy is gone. Perhaps he let his confidence get the better of him.

???: I suppose that would be a fitting end for him.

Ashtart: My instructions are the same for you. Capture the catalyst and bring [♂ him/♀ her] to me.

Ashtart: Failure will not be tolerated.

???: Of course, my lady. Your wish is my command.

???: If the interlopers in question are headed towards your forbidden zone from Texas Beyond, they'll inevitably have to pass through this area.

???: And fortunately for us, this planet is itself a large and enticing trap.

???: I expect it's only a matter of time before those meddling busybodies practically jump into my arms. I can't wait.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Just to be certain, make absolutely sure you do not freeze them or add them to your collection.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: The Master must arrive here alive.

???: Hehe, not to worry, I'm well aware. All right, ta-ta for now.

???: Glory to Space Shinkageryu and the goddess.

Ashtart: ...Well, she's still a little too cool of a customer. Are you sure she can handle this?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Heh. Worry not, my lady.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: After all, her cruelty to her opponents once she has lured them in close is utterly unfathomable.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: She is not called “The Freezing Sword” for nothing. Her strength lies in her temperament, not her swordplay.

Ashtart: (Well yeah, seeing how she wasn't originally a Saber.)

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Of course, there's always the chance she ends up freezing them anyway and just claims it was an accident or somehow unavoidable...

Ashtart: And you don't see that as a problem!?

Altera: Magnificently done. I now have no doubts that you are serious about defeating the Space Shinkageryu.

Fujimaru 1: Does that mean we have permission to land then?

Altera: I did give you my word, so yes, you can. We will stay up here and keep watch, so that you don't find yourselves surrounded.

Jane: Okay, the space elevator's all ours! I set it up so we can control it from the Maanna. Although...

Jane: Hey, Ishtarin? Are you sure it's safe for us to go to Big Blue?

Jane: You don't think its gravity might end up smooshing us into space pancakes if we get too close to its core?

Altera: I must admit, I am a bit worried about that as well. You could be going straight to your deaths.

Space Ishtar: Think about it. If it's safe enough for Space Shinkageryu to set up a base where their people can live, then it must be safe enough for us to go in.

Space Ishtar: So no, I'm not at all worried about going inside. All I'm worried about is who'll be there waiting for us.

Space Ishtar: Since we have to use that elevator, there's no way we can sneak in undetected. We'll probably have to fight them off the moment the doors open.

Space Ishtar: So make sure you all stay sharp down there. And if we happen to run into one of the Six Blades–

Fujimaru 1: Capture them alive no matter what it takes, right?

Space Ishtar: You got it. I'm counting on you, Master!

X: This is horrible! I had no idea there was so much bedrock around the core!

Jane: Whoa! According to these readings I'm seeing, it's a natural mine with some unbelievable kinds of ore!

Jane: This place is practically a mountain of invaluable resources, Ishtarin!

Jane: Aw man, I'm also seeing a bunch of hostile readings headed our way through this blizzard! Guess we won't have time to go treasure hunting after all!

Fujimaru 1: Sorry, goddess, no gemstones for you today!

Space Ishtar: I-I don't know what you mean. That mountain of gemstones wasn't tempting me at all. Nope. Not this goddess. No way, no how.

Fujimaru 2: Snap out of it, Space Ishtar!

Space Ishtar: C-come on, I'm a goddess of justice here! I don't have to snap out of anything!

A:???: My, my. It's hard to believe you claim to be a goddess Servant when you go around dressed like...that.

A:???: I'm sure it's just a title you gave yourself, but when it's so completely absurd, well, it just starts to feel like a cruel joke.

A:???: You're like a commoner who worked herself to the bone just to get into a prestigious school, and now goes around bragging about it to everyone who will listen.

A:???: Is this a cry for help? Would you feel better if I made friends with you?

Space Ishtar: Who're you calling a commoner!?

Space Ishtar: You don't even have the guts to face me without hiding behind your soldiers, you aristo-hick!

A:???: Hehe, that was a very good comeback. Did you also graduate from Queens, by any chance? If so, we share the same alma mater.

Space Ishtar: There you are. And from that aura of yours, you must be one of the Six Blades!

B:???: Hello there, everyone. Welcome to Big Blue Tank.

B:???: I am Anastasia Lakekicker, the woman who encased Big Blue's core in this icy membrane.

Anastasia: As a noblewoman, I usually like to offer my guests a nice sweet cup of tea...

Anastasia: ...but you gave up the right to be treated as guests when you trespassed on my private land.

Anastasia: So I'm afraid you'll have to disappear without a trace now.

Space Ishtar: Your private land? That's rich, coming from the person who showed up to steal it.

Space Ishtar: Whether this planet belongs to a goddess or not, I know damn well it doesn't belong to Space Shinkageryu.

Anastasia: Of course it doesn't. That's why I'm only asserting ownership over this land, not the planet.

Anastasia: I worked hard to cultivate this icy land, and you have no idea how much it costs to keep it running.

Anastasia: And if that wasn't bad enough, there's no end of petty thieves who try to make off with the gas and Altrium.

Anastasia: You should count yourselves lucky, really. Most of the thieves who come here end up at the bottom of the methane sea.

Anastasia: We'd never even know about them if they didn't turn up freeze-dried whenever we clean the pipeline.

Fujimaru 1: I didn't say anything before,'s really frigging cold here.

Fujimaru 2: It's so cold I'm pretty sure I could use a banana as a hammer...

Space Ishtar: ...Please don't say that, Fujimaru. Now you're making me feel cold...

Jane: Same... It really is freezing out here.

Jane: I thought I could just ignore it if I pretended not to notice, but no, this is just absurdly cold...

X: Ahchoo!

X: Oh, sorry. Please, don't mind me.

Anastasia: GODDAMN COLD!!!

Fujimaru 1: Where'd that come from!?

Anastasia: You're right, it's cold here. Really frigging cold.

Anastasia: But you only have to deal with it for a little while. Me, on the other hand? I'm stuck here forever!

Anastasia: I haven't been transferred once ever since I let the boss know I was good with cold environments and got assigned to this planet!

Anastasia: Yes, the pay is great. And that's really nice.

Anastasia: But I have nothing to spend it on!

Anastasia: Not even SpaceEx will deliver to this planet!

Anastasia: And now I can't even quit because I've become so used to the climate here that I can't go to any planet where the temperature even briefly goes above zero!

Anastasia: I even tried commissioning a frozen container once, so I could travel around the universe, only to mistakenly end up delivered to fish markets everywhere I went!

Anastasia: Thanks to that, all my memories of that trip are of the salty sea breeze and yummy seafood!

Anastasia: And of course, all my workers are robots, so while they're great at their jobs, they're lousy conversationalists! It's so boring here I could die!

Anastasia: My body might be used to the cold now, but my heart will always yearn for warmer climes!

Fujimaru 1: So much pent-up frustration!

Fujimaru 2: That's terrible. You poor thing.

Anastasia: I'm sorry. It's been so long since I had guests that I simply couldn't help getting a bit worked up.

Anastasia: By way of apology, please, allow my elite security guards to entertain you.

Jane: Wow! She's just letting all the feelings she's been holding back run wild now, isn't she!?

Space Ishtar: I'll say. This kind of overblown excitement is so familiar to me it's actually making me want to relax my guar–

Space Ishtar: No, I can't afford to relax it now! Here they come, Fujimaru!

X: I can see the glint of their silver Saber Badges even in this heavy blizzard... I guess these robots really are elite.

X: But unfortunately for them, I can conceal my presence in this weather just as well as I can in the dead of night!

X: Let's do this! Saber Ninja Art: Mt. Rokkou Avalanche!

X: With all this snow here to hide me, my Fire Support will have them stunned in no time!


Jane: Hey, guys! Is it just me, or were those robot Sabers–

Space Ishtar: It's not just you. They were crazy strong!

X: In my book, no self-respecting Saber would ever mix throwing daggers and swordplay...but I can't deny they otherwise fought like the real thing.

X: I guess Space Shinkageryu actually does have some genuine swordfighters among its ranks!

Anastasia: Indeed they do. These robots were all cloned from Lady Ashtart's personal bodyguards.

Anastasia: They used to be stationed on Dark Maanna before I secretly froze and brought them here.

Anastasia: I couldn't get by here without them, but I can't deny they're slower here than they were on Dark Maanna. I suppose this isn't exactly the most optimal working environment for them.

Fujimaru 1: You can say that again.

Fujimaru 2: It's so cold here they couldn't even say their voiced lines before the battle.

Anastasia: Indeed. Not to beat a dead horse or anything, but this place is REALLY cold, isn't it?

Anastasia: Most of the time, that's all there is here. There's no sounds... No smells...

Anastasia: Everything here just freezes, shatters, and falls into the ice ocean, never to be seen again.

Anastasia: It's a cruel, cruel world, but it's nothing if not clean and efficient here.

Anastasia: And having you Wild Space West bounty hunters show up here all covered in dust and grime utterly ruins that.

Anastasia: Unless, of course, you've got some sort of special gift for me to make up for that?

Anastasia: Like, say, a rare, one-of-a-kind Master?

Space Ishtar: Sure, I've got a gift for the host. I was taught to mind my manners, after all! Here, I brought you a ton of lead!

Jane: Holy crap, she just deflected those shots with the soul-freezing cold! Quit shooting at her!

Jane: This member of the Six Blades specializes in fighting Archers!

Anastasia: My, my, your friend there is exceptionally observant. I can't believe she figured it out that quickly.

Anastasia: Yes, I am one of the Six Blades. I am Anastasia the Freezing Sword, aka the Archer Killer.

Anastasia: That is to say, I am an all-new kind of Saber–one who is strong against Lancers and Archers alike.

Fujimaru 1: There went any chance of this making sense...

Fujimaru 2: Do you even qualify as a Saber at that point?

Anastasia: I actually agree with you, but putting that aside...

Anastasia: Master from another universe. Distinguished bodyguards.

Anastasia: I am told you defeated Billy at Texas Beyond.

Anastasia: In which case, perhaps you already know what it is I'm going to say next?

Space Ishtar: You want us to hand Fujimaru over, right? Then maybe you can figure out what I'M gonna say next: HELL NO.

Space Ishtar: Now, I've got a question for you.

Anastasia: And what might that be?

Space Ishtar: What is the Space Shinkageryu actually mining here? 'Cause I'm pretty sure it's not just precious gems.

Anastasia: Really? That's what you want to know? That's not very interesting. How disappointing.

Anastasia: But...very well.

Anastasia: I can't very well send my guests down to hell empty-handed, so if that's truly the answer you want, I'll tell you.

Anastasia: This planet's core is made up of supremely, incredibly dense high-quality Altrium.

Anastasia: That being the case, well...I doubt I need to tell you what someone could make with the gas that composes the bulk of this planet.

X: No way! So this whole planet is actually an Altrium refinery!?

Fujimaru 1: Isn't Altrium pretty common here?

Fujimaru 2: Are Altrium refineries that rare?

X: Well, Master. Altrium can indeed be found all throughout the Servantverse.

X: But despite that, it's also incredibly annoying to work with, because for whatever reason...

X:'s near impossible to find or make whenever you really need it.

X: That's why I wasn't able to repair Stallion II, which led to the whole Saber Wars I thing, but I digress.

X: My point is, everyone needs Altrium, but it's really, really hard to get your hands on a steady supply of it.

X: So if there was a place where you could mine and sell as much as you wanted, you'd make an absolute killing.

Space Ishtar: That explains why Space Shinkageryu could afford to build such an elaborate facility.

Space Ishtar: And here I thought you guys were warriors, not a bunch of petty crooks.

Anastasia: Of course we are. Who do you think eliminated everyone that stood in our way?

Anastasia: I don't know what kind of underhanded trick you used to defeat Billy, but it won't work on me. You're in my territory now.

Anastasia: This frigid ocean is cold enough to freeze the very sun. Now, it will be your grave.

Anastasia: Do your worst, you hicks. I, Anastasia the Freezing Sword, will turn you all into Santa Claus in the dead of winter.

Jane: Ohhh, I get it! Because we'll be frozen so solid we'll end up with ice beards!

Jane: Ishtarin, X, if it's cool with you, I'm gonna sit this one out! I don't think I'll be much help here anyway!

Space Ishtar: You better believe I'm gonna bring it! 'Sides, I have a feeling me and the ice queen here have lots in common!


Space Ishtar: It's over!

Space Ishtar: Your evil business shuts down today! So you're fired, and you won't be getting a golden parachute!

Anastasia: Gnnh... I can't believe I lost so miserably...

Anastasia: No, never mind that. Your swordplay... And now that I look closer, your face...

Anastasia: What's going on? Does this mean there's more than one Primordial Goddess...?

Jane: ...

X: Uh-uh, keep your hands where we can see them, sister. It's obvious you're not out of commission yet.

X: Now give yourself up, and don't try anything stupid.

X: We don't want to kill you. We just want the bounty on your head.

Space Ishtar: That, and all the info on Space Shinkageryu you can give us.

Space Ishtar: I'll be straight with you, Anastasia. I'm not after you.

Space Ishtar: I know there's another swordfighter in Space Shinkageryu who uses the same katana I do.

Space Ishtar: So I want you to tell me where I can find them, and what their name is.

Space Ishtar: On second thought... I'm guessing that Ashtart lady's the swordfighter I'm looking for. Am I right?

Anastasia: ...Hehe. I'm afraid you'll just have to meet the boss and see for yourself.

Anastasia: As for me, I'm a Grand Duchess. I won't ever kneel and beg for mercy. Why? Because... (Click)

Jane: Oh crap! Ishtarin! Fujimaru! This whole landmass is starting to collapse!

Jane: She must've blown up the bedrock! We've gotta get out of here before we fall straight into Big Blue's core!

Space Ishtar: Anastasia!!

Anastasia: Hehehe... You can't kneel and beg if there's no ground to kneel on, right?

Anastasia: I am the Grand Duchess of Ice. The times betrayed me, and my people banished me.

Anastasia: I refuse to be captured or to be forced to live in the world at large by its rules. If my story has come to an end, all that is left for me is to sink to the bottom of the icy sea.

Anastasia: But I am glad that at the end, I made a friend to keep me company in that frigid eternity. What do you say? Will you join me?

Space Ishtar: Being your friend is one thing, but there's no way in hell I'm dying with you!

Space Ishtar: Come on guys, let's hurry to the elevator!

Anastasia: Oh my, you would leave me here to die? How cruel.

Space Ishtar: Oh please, you think I don't know your game? I can tell you have a one-person escape pod prepped and ready to go.

Anastasia: Damn, you figured it out, huh? And I thought I had you.

Anastasia: I suppose great minds really do think alike. Are you sure you wouldn't like to be friends after all, goddess of good?

Space Ishtar: I'll think about it if we both make it out of here! See you around, you...obnoxiously difficult to kill Grand Duchess!

Fujimaru 1: Phew, we made it!

Talkie: Atmospheric pressure has reached armor-crushing levels. Recording wind speeds of two-thousand five-hundred kilometers per hour.

Talkie: Thirty-eight seconds until we reach Big Blue's core. Thirty-eight seconds until the Maanna is destroyed.

Fujimaru 1: We didn't make it!?

Space Ishtar: Oh crap! The Maanna'll never be able to withstand the pressures of a gas giant's core! If we get pulled into that, this whole ship will end up about the size of a raisin!

Space Ishtar: Jane, fire up the engine, full throttle! Give it all the Altrium we've got!

Jane: Nnn, I don't think it'll work. There's no way we're getting out of this gravitational field with standard space-horsepower.

Jane: If we're gonna survive, I think we're gonna have to do that thing you hate, Ishtarin!

Space Ishtar: Huh? You don't mean...

Fujimaru 1: What thing Space Ishtar hates?

Fujimaru 2: What're you talking about?

Jane: The Maanna's a pretty old model, but that also means it's pretty easy to understand its workings.

Jane: And one nice side effect of that is, the better the energy you feed it, the better the output you get in return.

Jane: So if we feed it some gems, it'll have just as much pep as Ishtarin!

Fujimaru 1: Sounds wasteful, but it also sounds like we don't have a choice!

Fujimaru 2: (Look at Space Ishtar with eyes full of hope.)

Space Ishtar: Ulp...

Space Ishtar: All right, fine. Besides, it was my idea to stop by here in the first place, and I know all the gems in the Servantverse won't do me any good if I'm not alive to enjoy them.

Space Ishtar: So...okay, we can use my gems. But, much are we talking, exactly?

Jane: Gimme a sec! I've just gotta do some quick math. Let's see...

Jane: We'll need either five-hundred kilograms of space lapis lazuli, or three-hundred fifty kilograms of space rubies.

Fujimaru 1: Uh-oh! Ishtar's turning as blue as lapis lazuli!

Fujimaru 2: Uh-oh! Ishtar's turning as red as rubies!

Space Ishtar: .........Wat?

Jane: That's our choice: five-hundred kilos, or three-hundred fifty kilos. Of course, if you wanted to really splurge and use space diamonds–

Space Ishtar: Are you NUTS!? Are you sure we can't get away with, say...a tenth of that?

Jane: Sorry, Ishtarin, but this is physics, not a street market. No haggling!

Talkie: Ten seconds until the point of no return. Nine. Eight. Seven.

Fujimaru 1: Oh crap, oh crap, oh craaaaaap!!!

Fujimaru 2: Am I just seeing things or is Anastasia waving goodbye to us from out there!?

Space Ishtar: ...

X: Why do you look so happy about this!?

Talkie: Six. Five. Four.

Jane: Ishtarin!

Talkie: Three. Two. One.

Fujimaru 1: Lady Ishtar, please! I'm begging you here!

Fujimaru 2: You said it yourself! You can't take them with you!

Space Ishtar: Aah! What am I doing!? Jane! Give it all the rubies we've got!

Space Ishtar: We'll skip some steps and do a short-range jump! Get us away from Big Blue as fast as we can move!

Jane: You got it! Bye-bye, limiters! Let's go, Maanna, let's go♪


Fujimaru 1: Did... Did we make it...?

Talkie: All turbulence on Big Blue Tank has ceased. This area is now safe.

X: Phew. Another close call for our heroic bounty hunters. Glad that's over with.

X: So how's Ishtar doing? Is she in one of the sleep pods to recover from the shock of losing all those gems?

Jane: No, it looks like she's up on the deck thanking Altera. She's always been conscientious about things like that.

Altera: Very impressive, bounty hunter. I quite enjoyed sitting back with a leg of mutton to eat and watching the show you all put on.

Altera: Zerco even recorded the whole thing. He says he would like to make a sci-fi movie from the footage.

Altera: Apparently, he plans on calling it “Worthless Goddess VS. Grand Duchess of Ice: Showdown on the Frosty Sea.”

Space Ishtar: That sounds like the title of a monster movie, not a sci-fi flick!

Space Ishtar: ...Oh, whatever. If you want to make a movie, go ahead. Just make sure you send me residuals if it sells well.

Space Ishtar: Anyway, what are you going to do about that elevator shaft now that the mining operations have ceased?

Altera: We will leave it as it is. We trust the goddess will take care of it when the time is right.

Altera: Thanks for all your help.

Space Ishtar: Aw, it was nothing. We were in the area anyway. So hey, you wouldn't happen to know a shortcut to any forbidden zones, would you?

Space Ishtar: Like, say, one right around here on the interstellar map?

Altera: ...So you seek the Floor of Space.

Space Ishtar: Then you know about this place? Have you ever been there?

Altera: I have not, for we have no business there. But if that is where you wish to go, and time is of the essence, then you should take the Path of Stones.

Space Ishtar: The Path of Stones? Do you mean the asteroid belt not far from here?

Space Ishtar: It says here there are black holes and space debris blocking off various routes through it, and it looks impossible to navigate with a standard space map...

Space Ishtar: But if we can get through, it does look like it could be a shortcut.

Space Ishtar: And while Fujimaru hasn't said anything about it, I'm sure [♂ he's/♀ she's] dying to get home as soon as [♂ he/♀ she] can...

Space Ishtar: So this'll be a good chance to prove [♂ he/♀ she] made the right choice coming with me!

Altera: That said, I must warn you that it is a dangerous route, and autopilot will be of no help to you.

Altera: Still, after seeing what you are all capable of, I expect you could make it through there in about the average ninety-minute runtime of a film without even needing the extra time for trailers.

Space Ishtar: Well, I'm sure I'll figure something out. Thanks for all your help, Altera!

Altera: By the way, are you...

Space Ishtar: Hm? Am I what?

Altera: ...No, never mind.

Altera: May the goddess watch over you on your journey.

Jane: Once Ishtarin gets back, we can finally do the slingshot maneuver around Big Blue! I can't wait!

Fujimaru 1: Well, in the meantime, I'd actually like to talk to you.

Fujimaru 2: Then could I ask you something while we're waiting, Jane?

Jane: Oh? What's up? Is it something you don't want Ishtarin overhearing?

Fujimaru 1: Why is Space Ishtar an Avenger?

Jane: ...

Jane: Good question! I don't have a clue, either! She doesn't seem like one to me!

Jane: How about you, Fujimaru? Does she seem like a demon driven solely by her resentment and need for vengeance?

Fujimaru 1: Not in the slightest.

Jane: Right? Then there's no problem!

Jane: Ishtarin's still Ishtarin, no matter what class she is!

Fujimaru 2: I guess you could call her a demon in one sense...

Jane: Oh... You mean how greedy she can be? Well, there's a reason for that...

Jane: Ever since a little incident years ago...

Jane: ...Ishtarin kind of had no choice but to become more, um...predatory? About money stuff.

Jane: But don't worry! Deep down, I promise she's a hard worker who's really, reeeaaally earnest!

Space Ishtar: Okay, I'm back! Come on, let's rev up the engine and get going!

Space Ishtar: We're going through an asteroid belt next, so it's time for me to work my piloting magic!

X: So we'll be breaking through the Sargasso region, huh? A shortcut sounds great to me.

X: Oh, by the way, Ishtar, I was wondering what was up with the way you and the Grand Duchess were trading barbs even as you kept the tone polite.

X: Have you two met before or something?

Jane: No, it's not that. Ishtarin just used to attend a school for proper young ladies, so she already knows how to handle princesses.

Fujimaru 1: A school for proper young ladies?

Fujimaru 2: She does?

Space Ishtar: What, you got a problem with that? I wasn't always a bounty hunter, you know. I used to go to school like anyone else.

X: I see... I guess every Servant has their own story, huh?

X: Still, I was surprised you didn't perk up more when you found out the planet was made up of high-purity Altrium.

Space Ishtar: Oh... Yeah, I guess I was just too angry to pay attention to that at the time.

Space Ishtar: But honestly, while I did hate to pass on those gems, I don't mind letting the Altrium go.

Space Ishtar: I mean, if I took over that operation and started selling it all myself, I'd be no better than Space Shinkageryu, right?

Space Ishtar: A goddess of justice always helps people out, and is compensated for her time with money and gratitude!

Space Ishtar: If I just focused on the money and didn't care who I hurt to get it, I'd be the only one enjoying myself!

Fujimaru 1: So you admit that you'd enjoy it!

Fujimaru 2: So this way, everybody wins, huh?

Space Ishtar: What about you, X? Wouldn't this have been a good chance for you to build a new spaceship?

X: Oh man, you're right! I can't believe I forgot all about that.

X: Hehe, maybe you've started to rub off on me more than I thought.

Jane: Ishtarin's pretty tough with contracts and payments, but she's way more relaxed about profit and loss.

Jane: I love that selfless side of her. She always seems to sparkle extra bright when she's being generous!

Fujimaru 1: That does sound like the Space Ishtar I've come to know.

Space Ishtar: What's that supposed to mean? Flattery won't buy you a discount!

Space Ishtar: All right, enough pointless chatter! Let's get going already!

Space Ishtar: Besides, if we hang around too long, that frigid Grand Duchess might show up looking for revenge!

Jane: You got it! Bringing Maanna's engines online!

Section 7: Sargasso Abyss I

Jane: Okay, we're navigating the Sargasso Abyss as we speak☆ Sure is a lot of debris around here!

Jane: The ether's so all over the place here that it's impossible to actually plot our position.

Jane: This place is generally called the Sargasso Abyss...

Jane: ...because trying to use autopilot here will only have you going in circles.

Fujimaru 1: Sargasso...

Fujimaru 2: There's a place on Earth called Sargasso too.

Jane: Wow, really? I guess people think the same way no matter what universe they live in!

Jane: Tell me more about your universe, Fujimaru!

Jane: How do people think about romance in your world? Are there a lot of couples that have big age gaps?

Jane: It's just us four girls here, after all! We can all let our hair down and really get to know each other☆

Space Ishtar: Would you mind not flirting with Fujimaru while I'm trying to navigate a deadly asteroid belt, Jane?

Space Ishtar: Besides, I'm counting on you to take over in an hour, so I need you well-rested.

Jane: Okay... Man, you're no fun sometimes, Ishtarin.

Space Ishtar: You do realize that if we get stranded here, we're all dead, right?

X: Good point. I've heard rumors about this place on my own journeys.

X: True to its name, they say it's a bottomless abyss where stars go to die. But on the flip side, they also say it's a great place to meditate, since nobody else can contact you here.

X: I don't know who first came up with this, but I've heard it described as a surprisingly addictive snack bar at the ass-end of the universe.

Space Ishtar: I doubt we'll be getting any drinks or snacks here, but I guess the black holes do make it bottomless.

Space Ishtar: That said, I can at least tell where the black holes are, so we should be fine as long as we give them a wide–

Jane: I heard that tummy growl, Ishtarin! Did you go on a diet without telling me?

Space Ishtar: No, I just ended up skipping lunch. Who do you think's been steering the ship while you were all taking a nap?

Space Ishtar: Fujimaru, if you've got time to hang out with Jane, then you've got time to go get me a protein bar.

Space Ishtar: There should still be a fancy strawberry one from Space Gadiva there that I've been saving.

Jane: (Uh-oh. I just polished that one off myself... What'm I gonna do now, Fujimaru?)

Space Ishtar: Oh, right. On a completely unrelated note...

Space Ishtar: If anyone, anyone at all, dares to take that special snack I've been saving...I. Will. Murder. Them.

Space Ishtar: But then, that would never happen with us, right? You'd never do that to me, would you, Jane?

Jane: (Help me, Fujimaru! You're my only hope!)

Jane: (I can see Ishtarin's hand coming off the rudder and heading to her blaster as we speak!)

Fujimaru 1: Hey, uh, since I don't have anything better to do,would it be okay if I cooked instead?

Fujimaru 2: I've, uh, got an idea. Why don't I cook us a proper meal for a change?

Space Ishtar: Huh? U-uh, sure, that's fine. I didn't know you could cook, Fujimaru.

Fujimaru 1: As long as you're okay with curry.

Fujimaru 2: Well, the only thing I can make is curry.

All: Curry!? You know how to make curry, Fujimaru!?

Space Ishtar: I-I'm impressed, Fujimaru. It's...not like curry's the most delicious thing in the universe or anything...but, I mean, I'd have seconds.

Space Ishtar: If you don't mind cooking again, I wouldn't mind having curry for dinner too.

Jane: I always thought curry only came in powder! Who knew Earth curry was so spicy and sweet!

X: It's easy to make, accommodates all sorts of ingredients, and has enough punch to blast away any loneliness you might feel eating it on your own...

X: It's the perfect food for survival camping!

X: Cosmic Noodles are great and all, but I'm calling it now: this marks the dawning of the Age of Curry!

X: Suffice to say, I'm definitely having some the next time I'm on Earth!

Fujimaru 1: (Thank you, Chaldea Cafeteria Guy!)

Fujimaru 2: Curry always solves everything.

Talkie: Warning: Hostile entities approaching. They appear to be life-forms indigenous to the asteroid belt.

Talkie: Species confirmed. They are wild space cats that have been driven berserk by an uncontrolled release of pungent spices into their ships' atmospheres.

Space Ishtar: Really!? Wait, hold up. I thought this Talkie thing was just a fancy PPS! (Planetary positioning system)

Space Ishtar: Everything it says is pre-recorded, right? Does this mean they accounted for this exact kind of situation when they were making it!?

Jane: Good point... Even if its creators were perfectionists, this seems like it would be going overboard...

X: Never mind that now! We have to get out there and fend off those cats! This flavor's too much for their innocent minds!


Space Ishtar: That turned out to be a good post-lunch workout, huh? That was just what I needed to work off that curry☆

Jane: You said it☆

Jane: Apparently, Servants in Fujimaru's universe never gain weight...

Jane: ...but those of us in the Servantverse aren't so lucky!

Jane: Ever since those deliciously sweet replacements for normal meals were invented, well...things have never been the same...

X: Oh yeah, the Infinity Chocolate incident that resulted in half the Spirit Origins in the Servantverse feeling famished all the time. I remember that...

Jane: Oh well, that's got nothing to do with us! Here, Ishtarin, why don't I take over piloting for a while?

Space Ishtar: Fine by me. I'd better grab some shut-eye too.

Fujimaru 1: Anything else I can help with?

Fujimaru 2: Can I handle lookout duty or something?

Space Ishtar: ... (Hehe. [♂ He/♀ She] really is trying to help, isn't [♂ he/♀ she]...)

Jane: Hey, Ishtarin? Don't get carried away and do something you might regret later, all right?

Space Ishtar: I appreciate that, Fujimaru. But no, it's all right.

Space Ishtar: Between the black holes and the zones riddled with debris, there's a lot of dangerous places still to come.

Space Ishtar: Yeah, we're going slower than usual, but we're still traveling nearly at light speed, so I'm pretty sure it'd be too much for you to handle.

X: She has a point. By the time you can see a black hole with your own eyes, it's already too late to escape it.

Jane: Exactly. We very nearly got sucked into one ourselves before, and trust me, it's not fun.

Space Ishtar: Really? I don't remember that. When was this?

Jane: Oh, right. I forgot you were napping at the time.

Space Ishtar: WHAT!? Why would you not wake me up for that!?

Jane: Come on, Ishtarin, you know you're pretty much useless right after you wake up, right? You can barely tell your right hand from your left until you've had your space coffee, let alone make life-or-death calls.

Space Ishtar: Gnnn... (Sigh) I'd like to argue with that, but...

Jane: Right? Especially since we had to escape at full speed, so I used your gems to–Ah.

Space Ishtar: Yes? What did you use my gems for?

Jane: I fed them to the engine, which gave us just enough power to escape by the skin of our teeth! Aww yeah☆

Space Ishtar: You mean you've done that before!?

Jane: Hey, it's not my fault the Maanna gets so peppy when you feed it gems...

Space Ishtar: I can't believe you! How could you... You... Gaaah!

Jane: Of course, the downside is that Ishtarin gets like, well, this☆

Fujimaru 1: Oh yes, I'm weeell aware.

Fujimaru 2: I see. So this sort of thing happens all the time here too...

Space Ishtar: Ugh! How could I not notice this!?

Jane: Well, you'd just come off a string of big jobs, so you were sleeping pretty soundly.

Space Ishtar: Not that! I mean, how could I fail to notice the loss of my gems!? I count them every night!!!

Jane: Oh, that? Probably 'cause you'd just gotten a whole bunch of them, and maybe half were still in storage.

Jane: Remember how you were so thrilled about the new gems that you ended up sleeping on sacks of them?

Space Ishtar: Oh, right... Then I guess I wouldn't have had a chance to count them all yet.

Space Ishtar: Sleeping on those gems was so, so glorious. But not the least bit comfy.

X: What is that? Some new kind of “no pain, no gain” health regimen?

Jane: Well, they are just rocks when you get right down to it.

Jane: Oh, right. Speaking of rocks, what do you want to do with the high-density debris zone we're coming up on?

Space Ishtar: What do you mean, what do I want to do? Can't we just go around it?

Jane: Not that. I mean there's some kind of Servant-made building in there.

Space Ishtar: A building? Way out here in the space sticks?

Space Ishtar: Hmm... I am kind of intrigued, but Fujimaru is our first priority right now...

Space Ishtar: So yeah, let's just ignore it and keep moving. Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got a date with a sleeping pod☆

Space Ishtar: Why don't you take a nap too, Fujimaru? It might help take the edge off.

Fujimaru 1: Don't mind if I do!

Fujimaru 2: Done! Jane, X, hold down the fort while we're gone, please☆

Jane: Got it! By the time you two wake up, I'll have us free and clear of Sargasso!

Audio Guide: Welcome to the sleeping pod. We'll have you unconscious in three seconds or less.

Audio Guide: You can choose from non-REM mode, where you can enjoy pure sleep uninterrupted by dreams, or REM mode, where you can enjoy all the dreams you like.

Audio Guide: Which would you prefer?

Fujimaru 1: Non-REM, please.

Fujimaru 2: REM REM, please.

Audio Guide: Very well. Now just lie back, close your eyes, and enjoy your sleep.

???: ...rse...

???: ...rse you...woof... ...I curse you...woof...

???: I have no idea when I'll be called up... That something-or-other-man guy showed up for no reason... I keep waiting and waiting for my order to hurry up and get here...

???: We felines have long watched over Servantkind, but now, my toe beans feel like they're about to burst.

???: On my fur, you will not leave here alive.

???: Take this! Cat Curse!

???: Now you will be doomed to wander the Sargasso Abyss forever and ever, woooooof!

Audio Guide: Good morning. Your selected sleep time has elapsed and it is time to awaken.

Audio Guide: If you wish to sleep some more, please disable the timer–

Fujimaru 1: ...What an awful dream...

Fujimaru 2: ...I think I'd better check out the cockpit...

Space Ishtar: Morning, starshine! Well? Are we out of the Sargasso Abyss yet?

Jane: Umm... Not exactly...

Space Ishtar: What do you mean, not exactly? And why are we still in this debris field!? It's been two hours!

X: I know, but...we just keep going in circles for some reason.

X: No matter what we try, we always end up back at that debris.

X: And now, we're also running dangerously low on Altrium.

X: If we don't find a way out of here soon, we'll have no choice but to call triple-S.

Space Ishtar: Wha...!? Are you nuts!? Don't you know how much they charge!?

Space Ishtar: And if worse comes to worst, they could even end up taking Fujimaru as collateral!

Fujimaru 1: Could it be...

Fujimaru 2: Is this the Cat Curse?

Jane: Do you know something, Fujimaru? If you've got a thought here, don't keep it to yourself.

Fujimaru 1: Well...

Jane: No way! A cat curse!? Well THAT explains it!

X: Yes, it all makes sense now. They say that cat curses last for seven generations, after all.

X: Even so...for a curse to be this powerful, someone would have to be casting it even as we speak.

X: And if I had to guess where they were, I'd bet my bottom space dollar they're in that debris field.

Space Ishtar: (Sigh) All right, I guess we'll just have to make an emergency landing there.

Space Ishtar: But listen. The moment we find whoever's messing with my ship, I'm taking them out myself.

Space Ishtar: Honestly, I still have my doubts about this curse thing, but never mind that now.

Space Ishtar: Since this was your harebrained idea, Fujimaru, you're going to help me find out what's really going on.


X: All I see so far is a wasteland with a bunch of old, crumbling buildings, but that's just par for the course in the Servantverse!

Jane: Hmm... This area seems less like a debris field and more like a ruined planet to me.

Jane: In a sense, it kind of feels like we've come across an ancient shrine of sorts. Who knows? This could actually be a major discovery, Ishtarin.

Space Ishtar: Maybe... I doubt even the space nomads come out here often, or at all.

Space Ishtar: If Father was here, he'd probably be heading out to poke at these ruins with his cane as we speak.

Jane: Totally. I can't think of anything Tokiomi loved more than ancient ruins.

Jane: Especially since that's how he ended up tracking down the Primordial Goddess.

X: The Primordial Goddess? I don't think I've ever heard of her before.

Space Ishtar: It's an ancient legend Father used to study. Not that anyone else in his circles believed in it.

Fujimaru 1: I don't think you mentioned your father before.

Fujimaru 2: What was he researching?

Space Ishtar: My father was an archaeologist who specialized in the great Universe Update.

Space Ishtar: His field of study included investigating what our universe was like before its current, ether-based incarnation...

Space Ishtar: ...and the Primordial Goddess is a legend he discovered in the course of his research.

Space Ishtar: Apparently, she's the oldest deity from Servantverse mythology. Like, over five billion years old.

X: Five billion years... No wonder nobody today's heard about her then.

Space Ishtar: I don't know much about what this goddess was like either. She's so ancient that she's barely even mentioned in most myths we know.

Space Ishtar: And since the names of gods that become too powerful take on power in their own right, her name wasn't even really passed down.

X: Hmm, I wonder if this is the same goddess the space nomads were talking about. They never actually said her name either.

Jane: Oh, yeah... Now that you mention it, the Primordial Goddess was supposedly incredibly fond of beautiful planets.

Space Ishtar: Yeah, Jane used to be Father's sort of unofficial assistant, so she actually knows a good bit more about this legend than I do.

Space Ishtar: He never really told me much about his research, for some reason...

Fujimaru 1: You used to be an assistant archaeologist, Jane?

Fujimaru 2: Really? You helped Space Ishtar's father with his research?

Jane: Yup! Though it was all part of my Space Scout duties, so it was mostly pathfinding and logistics and stuff.

Jane: Pretty much none of the ruins the professor wanted to investigate had been mapped out, so even getting to them in the first place was quite a challenge.

Space Ishtar: You know, I always wondered about that. If nobody had ever been to these places before, how did you guys even know there were ruins there?

Jane: Oh, that was all Tokiomi. He managed to work out the general coordinates for a search area by analyzing legends and ancient writings from all around the Servantverse.

Jane: After that, my job boiled down to finding a way to get us there. Oh, and to carry the equipment.

Jane: Um, I don't really know anything more. Deciphering ancient writing and stuff is waaay beyond me.

Jane: That said, there was always something distinctive about ruins connected to the Primordial Goddess, so I did learn to tell those apart, and these are different.

Space Ishtar: I bet. No matter how you slice it, this place is obviously just another abandoned modern-day city.

Space Ishtar: I can see why stray cats might end up living here–

???: Right you are, my Homo Serviens friend! This area was never part of the demonic Primordial Goddess's territory!

???: No, this is the holy hangout spot of space cats everywhere: Great Cats Garden, woof!

X: I recognize that ridiculous conversational tempo! So you're the cat that put this curse on us!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Fuhaha, come on, comrade, you'll make me blush. I gotta say, us cats are very much accustomed to not getting along with people when we meet!

Cosmo Cat Cat: But that doesn't change the fact that I'm mad as hell, and I'm not gonna take it anymore! Nobody's pulling the fur over my eyes anymore, no Servantee, Bob!

Cosmo Cat Cat: You're all doomed to wander this place until you starve now! But don't you worry. I'll send your bodies back home via sub-zero mail!

Space Ishtar: Took the words right out of my mouth, Felis Naked Apronis!

Space Ishtar: We don't have time for your stupid crap, so you're gonna undo that curse now, like it or not!


Space Ishtar: What's going on!? Why the hell can't we catch her!?

Space Ishtar: Wait, hang on. This isn't one of those “she was a ghost all along” things, is it!?

Jane: It's not that! Our attacks just don't register with her! I think she's in a constant state of quantum uncertainty that prevents us from ever touching her!

Fujimaru 1: THAT'S why she's invincible!?

Fujimaru 2: No wonder we can't catch her then.

Cosmo Cat Cat: Nyahaha, now do you see what you're up against, Servantnoids!? This is what spending too long in Sargasso can do to you!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Seriously, though. This is totally vengeful cat ghost power I got from being cast away and forgotten in the crushing depths of a black hole!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Anyway, if you think the idea of wandering this place for an eternity is just too cruel for school, I could always give you a mercy flush!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Oh, and don't bother asking me why I was tossed into a black hole. That's none of your beeswax!

X: Dammit! There's no way we can beat someone who won't listen to violence OR reason. Let's fall back for now!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Pawfect. I knew we could get on the same page, blue girl.

Cosmo Cat Cat: Now, if you'll excuse me, I always take a catnap after using my Noble Phantasm, and I'm feeling the need...the need for sleep. Come back another time if you ever wanna die horribly!

Cosmo Cat Cat: This cat's always hungry and lonely, so I'll take anything I can eat, woof!

Space Ishtar: I can't believe she really did turn out to be some kind of ghost... What is even happening anymore...?

Jane: Guess it's death by starvation... I mean, if my bullets can't hit her, I'm pretty much out of ideas...

X: Now I wish I'd taken the threat of this Sargasso place more seriously. I had no idea there were strange Servants like that out here...

Talkie: Detecting reduction in morale. Suggestion: perhaps a good meal would lift your spirits.

Fujimaru 1: It's not like you guys to be so down in the dumps.

Space Ishtar: What do you expect? She literally dodged everything we threw at her!

Space Ishtar: What about you? Are you really telling me that ghost cat didn't throw you off your game at all!? What, do you have some idea about how to fight her or something!?

Fujimaru 1: Actually, yes.

Space Ishtar: You do!?

Space Ishtar: ...Hmm, that does make sense. Maybe it could do something about her weird quantum state too.

Jane: I'm totally on board with Fujimaru's plan! It sounds like a blast!

Jane: Oh, wait. How're we gonna lure that cat out in the first place when she wouldn't listen to anything we had to say?

X: Hmm, I might have an idea. Remember the Saber Badges those cats we fought in the asteroid belt dropped?

X: If they're interested enough in those badges to collect them, maybe we can use them to lure this cat out.

Space Ishtar: I get it. So you want to leave a trail of Saber Badges to lead her into the jaws of our trap, right?

Space Ishtar: Well, it's not like we have any other ideas. Let's give it a shot.

Jane: Then it's Saber Badge hunting time! We can even collect more Altrium while we're at it!

Jane: All right! Let's start collecting badges right now so we can get Operation Cat Trap underway!

Section 8: Sargasso Abyss II

Fujimaru 1: All right, let's get this operation started.

Cosmo Cat Cat: Nnn, still no sign of them ordering anything. I really thought these guys might be different, but I guess they're just as gutless as the rest.

Cosmo Cat Cat: Too bad for them that my Cat Curse is only going to pick up more fur–uh, steam then. I knew I should've grabbed that lawn mower when I had the chan–

Cosmo Cat Cat: Wait. What's this? Is that a straight line of pleasingly evenly spaced Saber Badges I see sparkling on the ground?

Cosmo Cat Cat: I can't help but think they were placed here with some ulterior motive in mind...but, no sense leaving them just lying around! Besides, it's a lovely day for a walk, woof!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Oho, what's this one? No sooner do I come to the end of the badges than I see lunch placed on the ground as well.

Cosmo Cat Cat: A glittering white plate of shiny rice topped with some kind of scrumptious sauce... Mmm...

Cosmo Cat Cat: Oh yes, I know what this is. It's curry roux or I'm not a cat. Do they really think a little lunch like this is enough to stop me in my tracks? Why, that's downright insulting!

Cosmo Cat Cat: That said, I've never been one to turn down a free meal, and I'm sure not about to start now! Hahaha, hope you left the onions out, suckers!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Mm? ...Hm? Hmm? Mmmmmm!?!?!?

Cosmo Cat Cat: This delectable depth of flavor...! It's sweet and spicy all at once, goes down easily, AND it's got all the carrots I could ask for!

Cosmo Cat Cat: This is no ordinary curry! Why, this flavor cuts to the very truth of the universe!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Yes, this is universe roux! I'll call it...Univeroux, woof!

Talkie: Report: Cat's quantum uncertainty has been resolved now that she has consumed food from this world.

Space Ishtar: Now's our chance! Okay guys, let's all hit her with everything we've got! But just enough to teach her a lesson!


Cosmo Cat Cat: Mmm, that was delicious, Professor Tokiomi! It's been ages since I had such a catcellent meal!

Space Ishtar: Huh? Did you just say Professor Tokiomi?

Space Ishtar: You knew my father!?

Cosmo Cat Cat: Of course I did! Though not well! I just remember that was the name of a gentleman who happened to pass through here.

Cosmo Cat Cat: I also remember him twirling around a real fancy-pants cane and telling me...

Cosmo Cat Cat: “I have a hunch that my daughter will come here one day. If and when she does, I would like you tell her this for me:”

Cosmo Cat Cat: “These ruins were a bust. Try your luck somewhere else.”

Cosmo Cat Cat: “But don't lose hope. This is the way of things for an archaeologist.”

Cosmo Cat Cat: Oh, he also told me...

Cosmo Cat Cat: “I only wish I could do something to help you pass on to the next world. That may be beyond my ability now, but I promise I will learn how and return one day.”

Cosmo Cat Cat: “When that day comes, I will prepare the tastiest meal you ever had to stave off your loneliness. In the meantime, I hope you can wait here secure in the knowledge that I will return.”

Cosmo Cat Cat: Aaand that's all he wrote–er, said.

X: Cat! Are you starting to disappear!?

Cosmo Cat Cat: Ayup! All thanks to that delicious lunch I had!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Ahh, I'm so happy the meal I've been waiting an eternity for has finally come!

Cosmo Cat Cat: My five billion years of being hangry finally comes to an end. Thanks, Professor. And thanks for the curry, Master!

Cosmo Cat Cat: Now that I don't have anyone to curse or any reason to curse them, consider the debt you incurred for beating up all those cats paid in full.

Cosmo Cat Cat: Welp, smell you later, young and innocent goddess of Venus! Make sure to play nice with the humans this time!

Fujimaru 1: Uhh...

Fujimaru 2: What was that all about?

Jane: You know...I think I've heard about this.

Jane: One of the stories I heard working with Tokiomi was about a group of cats who got left behind on some planet when the Origin Universe disappeared.

Jane: It's said that all the humans from that planet managed to escape on spaceships, but also that all the cats went extinct because they were too busy napping to catch the flight.

Jane: This must be what remains of the planet where that happened...

X: Aw, Cat, I can't believe you had such a tragic backstory...

X: Maybe you and I are more alike than I thought...

Space Ishtar: (Goddess of Venus...? Play nice with the humans this time...?)

Space Ishtar: (Ugh, why does my chest feel so hot? It feels like I've forgotten something important...)

Jane: Oh well, we can worry about the details later! Right now, the important thing's that we can keep moving!

Jane: Should we get back into space and start making up for lost time, Ishtarin?

Space Ishtar: Oh, yeah, sure. But just give me a sec. There's no harm in making a little grave for her before we go, right?

Space Ishtar: This would never have happened if Father hadn't gone around making promises he couldn't keep, so the least I can do is pick up his slack.

Fujimaru 1: You said it!

Fujimaru 2: I'll mourn her with you.


Ashtart: ...All right, Munenori, let's hear it. Why do I still not have my catalyst?

Ashtart: Does this mean my Space Shinkageryu's vaunted Six Blades are not all they're cracked up to be?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Forgive me, Lady Ashtart. I have no excuse.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Even in my wildest dreams...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...hahaha, I never would have guessed that the earthling would hire bounty hunters that were capable of defeating Anastasia.

Ashtart: Time to start dreaming wilder dreams, dammit!

Ashtart: ...Hmph. I think that's enough kicking your shins for the moment.

Ashtart: Now then, tell me where the catalyst is now. Surely you know at least that much, yes?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: While I am afraid we lost track of [♂ his/♀ her] whereabouts after [♂ he/♀ she] left Anastasia's planet, it is very unlikely that [♂ he/♀ she] has gone into hiding.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: If [♂ he/♀ she] had, we would surely have received eyewitness reports from one of the nearby planets.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: So I suspect [♂ he/♀ she] is on the move. At first, we thought [♂ he/♀ she] may be taking the sort of ghost lanes bounty hunters usually prefer.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: But of course, our Space Shinkageryu controls all such routes. So the fact that we still have not located the catalyst can only mean one thing.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: [♂ He/♀ She] must be making [♂ his/♀ her] way through an area that is impossible to navigate on autopilot. For example, this asteroid belt all the local space nomads generally avoid.

Ashtart: What!? That area's really dange–

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: My lady?

Ashtart: ...Never mind.

Ashtart: It hasn't been that long since I abducted the catalyst and brought [♂ him/♀ her] here. I can't imagine [♂ he/♀ she] would choose such a dangerous route of [♂ his/♀ her] own accord.

Ashtart: I bet it was the bounty hunters [♂ he/♀ she] hired who came up with that one. Jerks...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: What would you have us do, my lady? Shall I put up a dragnet around the Terminal Line?

Ashtart: ...That area is part of the Darkened Sword's territory, right? Contact him.

Ashtart: But this time, don't bother telling him to capture the catalyst. He should focus on the bounty hunters.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I see. Indeed, once the bounty hunters are out of the picture, the catalyst will be easy pickings.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Being an utter mad dog even among the Six Blades, the Darkened Sword should be perfect for the job.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: And that is why I really must ask: Slim though the odds are, what will you do if he kills the catalyst?

Ashtart: I will cut his head off myself in the most gruesome and excruciating way Servantkind has ever known!

Ashtart: Assuming the guy still has two brain cells to rub together, tell him not to kill the catalyst.

Ashtart: Oh, and send one of our latest observation drones along to keep watch, just in case.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Cunningly thorough as always, Lady Ashtart. Consider it done.

Space Ishtar: Yes! We made it out of the debris field AND the black hole danger zone!

Space Ishtar: Whew, I'd say we're well and truly out of the space woods! Great work all around, guys!

Fujimaru 1: I didn't know you could make a spaceship drift...

Fujimaru 2: I never imagined this ship could move like that...

X: That was some fancy piloting. I might have to borrow those moves the next time I'm in a race.

Jane: Right!? I knew Maanna and Ishtarin were in perfect sync!

Space Ishtar: Aww, stop. Actually, don't. Keep it coming☆

Space Ishtar: Anyway, that ought to make up for the time we lost. Now, as long as nothing else gets in our–

Space Ishtar: Aaand there's that other shoe dropping. I knew it couldn't be long!

Space Ishtar: Jane!

Jane: We've got a single-passenger craft approaching us rapidly from directly ahead! It hasn't shown any signs of aggression yet, but–

Space Ishtar: What was that about signs of aggression!? That blast just grazed our shields!

Jane: Huh!? But they're not even locked on to us! I can't imagine they could actually hit us like that...

X: So whoever they are, they're just firing wildly, huh. Though they sure are coming in fast and furious!

Jane: We should have visual on them pretty soo–Huh!?

Space Ishtar: The hell!?

Fujimaru 1: Are they actually standing on the bow of their ship? In freakin' space!?

Fujimaru 2: Is that...a space knight!?

Mysterious Berserk Swordfighter: Raaaaaaaaaaahh!!!

Jane: Now he's coming in right on our tail! He's been running into debris left and right, but he's just shrugging it off!

Space Ishtar: I've never seen anything like this guy, not from the Space Shinkageryu or space pirates. What do you guys make of him!?

X: I think we'll have even less luck trying to reason with him than we did with Cat!

Space Ishtar: Same here! Then our only choice is to fight him off!

Jane: Aah! Don't turn just yet! Now he's pulled up right alongside us!

Mysterious Berserk Swordfighter: Raaaaaaaaaaahh!!!

Jane: Ah dammit, he boarded us! And he's wasting no time–

Mysterious Berserk Swordfighter: Raaaaaaaaaaahh!!!

X: He's banging away at our hull with a steel pipe like the Maanna is some giant space drum! It's just like something my idiot cousin would pull!

X: Wait, hang on. Does he really not realize he's attacking the very ship he's standing on!?

Space Ishtar: We'll just have to stop him before he can do any more damage! Come on, let's go fight him up top!


A:Mysterious Berserk Swordfighter: Gaaaaaaaaaaahh!!!

Space Ishtar: There, we knocked him off the hull! All right Jane, get us out of here now! Full throttle!

Jane: You got it!

Mysterious Berserk Swordfighter: Raaaaaah!

Jane: He's firing at us again!

Space Ishtar: So he still hasn't had enough!? Ugh, I wish he'd just give up already!

Space Ishtar: What was that!? Are we hit!?

Jane: No, we're okay! The shields took it! But there's another volley incoming!

Space Ishtar: Aah! Seriously, would it kill him to just give it a rest!?

X: Oh for... I can't take this anymore! I'm going out there to give him a piece of my mind!

X: Oh, the rest of you stay here, please! I'd also really appreciate it if you let us talk in private!

Mysterious Berserk Swordfighter: Raaaaaaaaaaaah! Hraaaaaaaaah↑↑↑!!!

X: Don't you “hraaah” me! What do you think you're doing here, Lancelot!?

X: When I heard you'd been thrown into space after you lost a duel with Ex, I never expected to find you acting like a thug out here in the boonies!

X: Don't you have a home and family to go back to, you deadbeat!?

Lancelot: A... Arrrthurrr!?

Lancelot: I mean, uh, I'm sorry, you have the wrong man. I'm sure I have no idea who this Knight of the Lake could be, handsome as he sounds.

Lancelot: I am but a humble knight of darkness who was recruited by the Space Shinkageryu after they found me wandering the galaxy with no memories.

Lancelot: Of course, I've never met you in my life, hahahaha. ...That should work, right?

Lancelot: Now, if you'll excuse me, I'd better take my leave. I've a family to get back home to, and a son who's at a difficult stage in his life, so... Hahahaha...

X: Good! Get out of here! I swear, what's the Round Table come to these days!?

Jane: Hey, he's heading off in that direction...! We lost him!

Fujimaru 1: D-does this mean we're clear!?

Fujimaru 2: I really thought we were goners that time.

Space Ishtar: (Exhale) Glad that's over with. You okay, Fujimaru?

Space Ishtar: I have to admit, that was a close one, even for me. I've never sensed anything quite like that black knight's bloodlust.

X: I'm back! Don't worry, that good-for-nothing shouldn't give us any more troub–Hm?

X: Is it just me, or are we starting to slow down?

Jane: It's not just you. He got us good with that last shot.

Jane: Now our engine's all out of commission♡

Space Ishtar & X: Wha–

Fujimaru 1: What did you say!?

Section 9: Queen's High School I


– Planet Zenjou - Tohsaka Mansion –

X: So this is Zenjou, huh? Looks like a great place to live. The people all seem to be really nice, too.

X: I doubt we'll have to worry about running into Space Shinkageryu here.

Jane: Yup! Almost every Servant on Zenjou is either a Caster or an Archer, after all!

Jane: Anyway, I can handle Maanna's damage assessment on my own, so why don't you all have some fun sightseeing in the meantime?

Jane: Besides, I bet there's somewhere you two are dying to check out. Right, Fujimaru and X?

Fujimaru 1: You know it! Space Ishtar's alma mater, here we come!

Fujimaru 2: Right! Queens, here we come!

X: Hell yes! I've always wanted to see it for myself!

Space Ishtar: ...(Sigh) So you're both all starry-eyed about this, huh...

Space Ishtar: All right, fine. I suppose I can take you there while we're out and about relaxing anyway.

Space Ishtar: The students might be a little...difficult, but the campus itself is really nice.

B:Dainty Young Lady: Goodness me! I can't believe there's still anyone in Queens who isn't a Saber!

C:Dainty Young Lady: Oh yes, this is so embarrassing. If we don't do something, the dean's likely to scold us along with them!

B:Dainty Young Lady: Say, that's you, isn't it, Ishtar? How good to see you again after...what is it, ten years you've been gone?

B:Dainty Young Lady: But I'm afraid there's no place for you in Queens anymore.

B:Dainty Young Lady: Now you're gonna pay for beating me in the Miss Queens pageant preliminaries!

X: Wh-what the...? We only just got here, and we have students(?) trying to attack us!? What kind of school IS this!?


Space Ishtar: Man, you guys haven't changed a bit. It's just like coming home again☆

X: Huh?

X: Attending Queens was my dream back when I was a little girl growing up in the space boonies, but this isn't what I thought it'd be like at all...

X: Are you telling me this is normal around here? It's not part of some weird festival or something?

Space Ishtar: That's right. Queens' longest held tradition is “might makes right.” You won't last two seconds here with stars in your eyes.

Space Ishtar: So I'd hurry and get a hold of yourself if I were you, X. They'll hunt you down in no time if they smell weakness.

Fujimaru 1: Who's hunting us!?

Fujimaru 2: Who's “they”!?

Space Ishtar: The students, of course.

Space Ishtar: Every girl who comes to Queens has grown up surrounded by power and authority.

Space Ishtar: So what do you think happens when you gather every budding tyrant in the universe under one roof?

Fujimaru 1: Atrocities too horrible to describe.

Fujimaru 2: Anguished screams that make hell sound like a nice summer getaway.

Space Ishtar: You got it☆ These girls are always looking for something they can use to give themselves a leg up, so watch yourselves, 'kay☆

X: (So basically, this is where rich families send daughters who have gotten too wild to control, huh...)

X: (I guess that makes it kind of like a shelter for rich girls, only in reverse... I'm glad I don't have to worry about keeping up appearances like that.)

Space Ishtar: Okay, now that you've seen the courtyard, let me show you what the schoolhouse is like. Let's see, class 2-A should be right up those stair–

C:Jaguar Warrior: Haaaaaah!!!

Space Ishtar: Crap! Ms. Jaguar!?

C:Jaguar Warrior: Oh? I thought you were a group of outsiders, but it looks like we have the second-year Red Devil here too.

C:Jaguar Warrior: Good day, Red Devil! Are you aware that you have a lot of unfinished work to hand in?

Space Ishtar: Ma'am, yes ma'am!

Fujimaru 1: No way! She's standing at attention!?

D:Jaguar Warrior: Heh. At ease, student. You know, you're the only one who hasn't changed a bit since the good old days.

D:Jaguar Warrior: You never forget your hyena instincts, even as you gracefully soar across the skies like a hawk.

D:Jaguar Warrior: You were the best student I ever had... Not to mention the one who destroyed the most of the school's facilities... (Eyes welling up with proud tears)

D:Jaguar Warrior: So tell me, what are you up to nowadays? It's been, what, ten years since you left the academy?

Space Ishtar: Well, I've been, um, contributing to society by apprehending bad actors and receiving appropriate compensation...

D:Jaguar Warrior: Ah, a bounty hunter. Excellent choice of words and cadence.

D:Jaguar Warrior: No wonder you were valedictorian. You embody our school's motto of “Strong, Proper, Beautiful” better than anyone.

Fujimaru 1: Valedictorian SpIsh!

Fujimaru 2: What was SpIsh like as a student?

Space Ishtar: Wh-what do you think you're doing, Fujimaru!? Don't abbreviate my name like that! It's weird!

D:Jaguar Warrior: As I said, she was the best student I ever had. It was like she already had everything she needed.

C:Jaguar Warrior: Good day, young lady cadets, and welcome to Queens!

C:Jaguar Warrior: Now listen up! You don't speak to me unless you preface it with “Ma'am, yes ma'am!” Is that clear!?


Ma'am, yes ma'am!

C:Jaguar Warrior: You there! What's your name!?

F:Ishtar: Ma'am, yes ma'am! It's Ishtar, ma'am!

C:Jaguar Warrior: That's what I like to hear! Are you ex-military? You're not? Really? And you still responded like that? Oh well!

C:Jaguar Warrior: So, Ishtar, huh. That's a great name! Tell me, cadet, are you a demon!?

F:Ishtar: No ma'am, I'm not! (Translation: Don't talk to me, bitch!)

C:Jaguar Warrior: Then are you a nightmare!?

F:Ishtar: No ma'am, I'm not! (Translation: Are you shitting me with this!?)

C:Jaguar Warrior: Do you have a problem with anything I said!?

F:Ishtar: Not at all, ma'am! (Translation: You're damn right I do, bitch!)

C:Jaguar Warrior: Perfect! Your sheer wildness is making me downright giddy!

C:Jaguar Warrior: Okay everyone, I want you all to follow Ishtar's example! Just don't take the rebellious spirit stuff too far!

C:Jaguar Warrior: Ishtar! From now on, I'm going to call you “Red Devil”!

C:Jaguar Warrior: Pretty good name, right!? Do you like it!?

F:Ishtar: Yes, ma'am! I think I'll go by that when I take a wrong turn and start leaving a path of destruction in my wake!

C:Jaguar Warrior: Excellent! I can feel the responsibility for the entire Servantverse's future resting on my shoulders!

C:Jaguar Warrior: All right, Red Devil, drop and give me a thousand! I'm going to whip that evil nature of yours into shape!

Fujimaru 1: ...Is this what all schools for proper young ladies are like?

Fujimaru 2: That sounds more like boot camp than boarding school...

D:Jaguar Warrior: ...Between you and Blue Wrestler's academy turf war, and the way you both dominated the Cosmic Renaissance intergalactic martial arts dance competition, you two pretty much ruled this school.

D:Jaguar Warrior: Ahh, those really were the good old days...

X: Now I get it. You're always making these daring moves because you grew up following the school's motto.

Space Ishtar: So where's Astraea? Since we get to choose when we graduate ourselves, I'm guessing she's still here at the academy?

D:Jaguar Warrior: I'm afraid not.

D:Jaguar Warrior: Blue Wrestler left of her own accord too, after the new dean came and changed things. It was right after you left.

Space Ishtar: The new dean... What changed, exactly? I did notice those girls that attacked us had some pretty unpleasant things to say.

D:Jaguar Warrior: For some reason, everyone wants to change their class to Saber now.

D:Jaguar Warrior: They even say anyone who's not a Saber can't be a proper young lady.

D:Jaguar Warrior: The students who objected to that trend were all taken away to summer school for “special guidance,” and none of them have returned.

D:Jaguar Warrior: I guess their summer will never end. Kind of romantic, really.

Space Ishtar: !

X: That's horrible! What about their parents? Didn't they freak out about this!?

D:Jaguar Warrior: Of course they did. But for some reason, they never went public with their grievances, and in time, they were forgotten.

D:Jaguar Warrior: Then the new dean started pressuring all the teachers from the old guard to retire. Now, I'm the only one left who taught here when you attended.

D:Jaguar Warrior: All this silence has got everyone so suspicious of one another that you can cut the tension with a laser knife. At this point, it feels more like a cemetery than a school.

Space Ishtar: ...Is there anything I can do, Ms. Jaguar?

D:Jaguar Warrior: Would you look into the new dean and his faculty for me? There's something...inhuman about them.

Space Ishtar: All right. I don't have a lot of time to spare, but I'll do what I can.

Space Ishtar: Come on, guys, let's head back. Good to see you again, Ms. Jaguar.

D:Jaguar Warrior: Good day, Red Devil. Be careful out there.

Jane: Hey hey! Welcome back guys! I'm all done looking the Maanna over!

Jane: I'll be blunt: it looks like it's gonna take a long time to fix.

Jane: Like, the engine's all shot to pieces, so we're gonna have to get a new one, right? Then we've gotta swap it in and hook it up to everything, right?

Jane: And that's not even getting into the long overdue firmware updates, which are gonna take some time too.

Jane: All told, I think it's gonna take me and Ishtarin at least four days to get it all done.

Space Ishtar: Yeah? That works out nicely. We actually ran into a little incident ourselves.

Space Ishtar: While we were visiting Queens...

Jane: Whoa! I had no idea all that was going on with your old school right now!

Space Ishtar: It's got to be either a kidnapping or Servant trafficking. And on top of that–

Fujimaru 1: Space Shinkageryu Saber Badges are involved too.

Fujimaru 2: Space Shinkageryu's clearly behind it.

Space Ishtar: Right. I can't stand that they've somehow managed to sink their claws this deep into the Servantverse.

Space Ishtar: Ms. Jaguar didn't come out and say it, but it's a safe bet that either the whole school is bugged, or the faculty's got spies reporting back to them.

Jane: That's awful! Okay, so what's this new dean like?

Space Ishtar: I wish I could tell you, but I don't even know where to find him. Hell, I couldn't even tell you where his office is.

Space Ishtar: I mean, I'm sure it's somewhere on campus...but the moment we set foot in there, fake Sabers are gonna be all over us.

X: Hmm. Sounds like this is where I come in.

X: I've been keeping this a secret so far, but stealth missions are actually my specialty.

Fujimaru 1: I already knew that.

Space Ishtar: Same.

Jane: Same!

X: I see. Well, I'm glad to know you're all so understanding! Though I have to say, I'm also a little hurt!

X: Oh well, I guess it just goes to show what good friends we are.

X: At any rate, I'm not going to sit back and twiddle my thumbs while your alma mater is in trouble, Ishtar. Don't worry, I'll find the dean's office for you.

X: You two just focus on fixing up the Maanna in the meantime.

X: Oh, and if you don't have anything else to do right now, Fujimaru, I'd be grateful for your assistance.

X: If you could cause a distraction on campus that gets everyone's attention, that would make my life a whole lot easier!

Space Ishtar: Hear that, Jane? Looks like we're set then. Thanks, X. That'll be a big help.

Space Ishtar: And thank you for helping her out with her investigation, Fujimaru.

Space Ishtar: Now Jane and I can focus on fixing the Maanna up like new again!

Section 10: Queen's High School II

A:Space Ishtar: Heeey, you there, Fujimaru?

A:Space Ishtar: Would you mind turning off the space stove inside the house, pleeease? I'd do it myself, but I've reeeally got my hands full right now!

Fujimaru 1: Suuure thiiing.

Fujimaru 1: Hang on... Did she say “stove”?

Fujimaru 2: What even is a space stove, anyway?

Sophisticated Gentleman: I'm sorry, Ishtar. I know this is supposed to be a happy day, but first, I must apologize.

Sophisticated Gentleman: If you're watching this now, then I am almost certainly dead.

Sophisticated Gentleman: I know I promised to reveal something spectacular to you on your fourteenth birthday, and I had been so excited to do so...

Sophisticated Gentleman: ...but it seems I won't be able to make good on that promise anymore. Again, I'm sorry.

Fujimaru 1: This must be...

Fujimaru 2: Is that Space Ishtar's father...?

Sophisticated Gentleman: I'm afraid I don't have a lot of time. It won't be long before he gets here.

Sophisticated Gentleman: As I suspected, it seems he wasn't funding my research out of appreciation for the arts after all.

Sophisticated Gentleman: So I want you to listen to me closely, without going off on the wild flights of fancy that most teenagers fall prey to.

Sophisticated Gentleman: The truth is, I'm not your real father, and you are no ordinary Servant.

Sophisticated Gentleman: I know I told you that you were a Divine Spirit Servant, but you aren't.

Sophisticated Gentleman: You may think you're a normal person, but you're actually a goddess. A real, honest to goodness goddess.

Sophisticated Gentleman: You're what he's coming for, Ishtar. You are one half of a goddess divided into her good and evil sides.

Sophisticated Gentleman: So I want you to leave this planet, hide your name, and live a good, simple life.

Sophisticated Gentleman: Oh, and one last thing... Happy fourteenth birthday, Rin.

Sophisticated Gentleman: For your present, I'm giving you something you've always wanted: the Maanna.

Sophisticated Gentleman: Once this has all blown over, I hope you'll go on to explore the universe as an academic, just like you told me you would.

C:Sophisticated Gentleman: Gaaah! Khh... So it was you, Munenori!

???: This is not what we agreed upon, Professor Tokiomi.

???: As I recall, our funding was contingent upon you turning all that you discovered in the ancient ruins over to us.

???: But it seems not only did you fail to disclose all your findings, you also wasted a considerable amount of my time.

???: The punishment for breaking a contract with us is death. Now, if you'll excuse us, we'll collect the goddess's legacy and be on our way.

C:Sophisticated Gentleman: Ghh... You lot have no idea what you're messing with.

C:Sophisticated Gentleman: You can't let her wake up. If you do, she'll send this universe back to the stone age!

???: Come now, is that a joke? You say that as though you yourself haven't kept her awake all this time.

???: No matter. If the legend does turn out to be true, well, that will be most gratifying in its own right.

???: Space Shinkageryu has long wished for nothing more than to attain a state of nothingness.

???: But, if we cannot reach it now, we should be able to see where it lies once we have reduced the rest of the universe to nothingness.

C:Sophisticated Gentleman: That's horrible... You'll destroy the whole universe to make up for your own deficiencies!?

???: Indeed it is. When you get right down to it, this world is nothing more than all of us foisting our own ugly natures upon one another.

Space Shinkageryu Disciple: Commander, we found the vessel in question in a hidden basement chamber.

???: Good. Carry her carefully. Remember, she will one day surpass me and become our new leader.

???: ...Heh. Indeed, she must surpass me. No normal sword would serve to cut the universe itself.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Fujimaru 2: (I was NOT expecting to see that...)

Space Ishtar: Welcome baaack☆ Hope you didn't feel like I was treating you like a maid or something☆

Space Ishtar: Anyway, thanks to you taking care of that for me, I was able to finish tuning up Maanna's new engine perfectly.

Space Ishtar: Now we can go after Space Shinkageryu's fortress anytime we like.

Space Ishtar: But first, I need to take care of this little problem in my hometown!

Space Ishtar: You'll help me out with that too, right, Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: Uh... Y-yeah, of course.

Space Ishtar: What, not exciting enough for you? C'mon, you can deal with it. It's not like it'll take long.

Space Ishtar: Or what, are you disappointed to find out what really goes on in prestigious schools for young ladies? Well, ex-CUSE me for not being all frail and dainty♡

Fujimaru 2: (Unable to look her in the eye)

Space Ishtar: Wh-what's wrong? Are you getting sick or something? You know you can always rest if you need to, right!?

Fujimaru 1: ...So, uh, hey.

Space Ishtar: Hm? What's up?

Fujimaru 1: Can I ask what your father was like?

Space Ishtar: My father? Where'd that come from?

Space Ishtar: Oh, I get it. You got curious about my homelife now that you've been in my old house, huh?

Space Ishtar: Well, Father's name was Tokiomi, and from what I can tell, his fellow professors all thought he was kind of eccentric.

Space Ishtar: He loved fieldwork more than anything, and he spent pretty much half his life exploring old ruins.

Space Ishtar: He was a meritocrat with very high standards, both for himself and for others, and he could come off as kind of a hard-ass...

Space Ishtar: ...but deep down, he was really just a big softie–a lifelong bachelor who valued peace over profits.

Fujimaru 1: A bachelor? Then, does that mean...

Fujimaru 2: So...does that mean you were adopted?

Space Ishtar: Nope. I'm Professor Tokiomi's one and only daughter, no matter what anyone says.

Space Ishtar: Wait. Is the sudden interest 'cause you want to introduce yourself to him?

Space Ishtar: Followed by, say, asking his permission to marry me?

Fujimaru 1: I-I was just curious! As a space friend!

Space Ishtar: Aww, too bad☆

Space Ishtar: But seriously, I do think he would have liked you.

Space Ishtar: Not that you'll ever get the chance to find out now, unfortunately.

Jane: Ooh, are we talking about Tokiomi? Let me get in on this! Oh, right, it'll have to wait!

Jane: I just got a message from X saying she found the dean's office.

Fujimaru 2: Really? You wouldn't mind if I did?

Space Ishtar: Huh? You're serious!? You don't look like you're kidding... P-please tell me you're just a really good actor!

Jane: There you guys are. I was wondering where you were taking a break. And what's this? Gazing longingly into each others eyes, are we? I smell hanky-pankyyy☆

Jane: But I'm afraid it'll have to wait! X just sent a message saying she found the dean's office!

X: I swear, this school is the worst.

X: I'm sure you already realized this yourself, Fujimaru, since you helped me out with the decoy stuff...

X: ...but it turns out all the teachers here have been replaced with machines pretending to be Servants!

Fujimaru 1: Ohhh...

Fujimaru 2: So that's why they seemed so off...

Space Ishtar: Gotcha. Ms. Jaguar must've just instinctively noticed that or something.

Space Ishtar: She really is the last bastion of the school I remember. This place is lucky to have her.

Jane: So, does this mean the dean's a robot too? Like Master Babbagen?

Jane: I can imagine him saying “According. To my. Calculations. The only ones. Who can be. Called Sabers. Are those. Originally belonging. To the Saber class.”

X: Babbagen would never say something like that!

Space Ishtar: Never mind what he would or wouldn't say! The important thing is that once we get to the dean's office, we can settle this once and for all!

Fujimaru 1: I've definitely never seen a dean's office like this before!

Fujimaru 2: Yup. Definitely inhuman.

Space Ishtar: Good day, Mr. Dean! Is now a good time to discuss your educational policies!?

Mecha Dean: Very well. You're not on my appointment schedule for today, but I've still been expecting you.

Fujimaru 1: Wow, they really didn't skimp on the mecha part!

Mecha Dean: Student ID: XXXX-XXXXX-XXXX, Ishtar. Truant. Numerous unsubmitted assignments.

Mecha Dean: Noted problem child, but still officially enrolled. I therefore recognize you as one of our students. Good morning.

Mecha Dean: I have no record of summoning you here, so it would seem this is an unplanned visit. State your business.

Space Ishtar: Well, sir, I have some questions I was hoping you could answer.

Mecha Dean: Permission to ask questions, granted.

Space Ishtar: Why did you make such drastic changes to Queens' traditions?

Mecha Dean: I expect what you consider to be traditions...

Mecha Dean: ...are actually customs such as spending one's youth running around aimlessly...

Mecha Dean: ...and expending one's excess energy in the violent athletic competitions commonly known as sports.

Mecha Dean: I excised those “traditions” because I deemed them to be irrational, detrimental behaviors. In keeping with this, I fired the former faculty for their incurable need to adhere to these outmoded “traditions.”

Space Ishtar: All right then, what about the girls you took away on some so-called summer school program? Where are they?

Mecha Dean: Our students agreed to abide by this school's policies when they enrolled. In spite of their agreement to do so, some students have failed to abide by our rules.

Mecha Dean: Specifically, they refused to wear their Saber Badges in accordance with our dress code.

Mecha Dean: I therefore determined they required remedial education, and compelled them to go to an appropriate training ground.

Space Ishtar: And where is it!?

Mecha Dean: We have many such training grounds, so it will take some time to answer that question.

Mecha Dean: As for the curriculum they are studying at their training ground, I have entrusted the matter entirely to the charity organization Space☆Shinkageryu.

X: I knew it! Space Shinkageryu WAS behind all this!

Space Ishtar: All right, last question. Are you a member of Space Shinkageryu too?

Mecha Dean: Yes. I am one of the Six Blades, and a gear in the machine that is institutional education.

Mecha Dean: I am the Monstrous Sword of overwhelming vitality. I am Xiang Yu.

Xiang Yu: Student ID: XXXX-XXXXX-XXXX, Ishtar. I have been ordered to capture and transport your companion.

Xiang Yu: As head of this school, I demand that you submit your companion to me in a swift and timely manner.

Space Ishtar: Sorry, Dean, that'll just have to be one more assignment I never turn in!

Xiang Yu: I'm sorry to hear that, Student ID: XXXX-XXXXX-XXXX, Ishtar. Very well then, I hereby suspend you indefinitely for refusing to comply with the dean.

Xiang Yu: You will also be turning in a twenty page essay on your rule breaking after surrendering the catalyst.

Space Ishtar: Fine by me. Though I'd hate to get expelled for punching the dean in his stupid mechanical face!

???: Hold it!!!

Space Ishtar & Jane & X: !?

Fujimaru 1: Th-that voice!

Jaguar Warrior: I heard the whole thing!

Space Ishtar: Ms. Jaguar!?

Xiang Yu: You're Faculty ID–

Jaguar Warrior: Will you shut up already, you overgrown bucket of bolts!?

Xiang Yu: Bucket of bolts?

Jaguar Warrior: I was willing to chalk up your new, harsher policies to a simple difference of opinion...

Jaguar Warrior: ...but how dare you ship my precious cadets off for unreasonably harsh training sessions at some outsider's hands!?

Jaguar Warrior: I don't care if the board of education gave you a free pass to handle student discipline how you like! Nobody does that to my students and gets away with it!

Jaguar Warrior: So what I'm trying to say here is...

Jaguar Warrior: Die, robot man! Die!!!


Jaguar Warrior: Booyah!

Xiang Yu: ...All functions shutting down. Sending final report to headquarters.

Xiang Yu: If the ritual at the ancient shrine succeeds, and Space Shinkageryu will assume control of the Servantverse...

Xiang Yu: ...I foresaw that having my students change their class to Saber would be the best way to ensure their futures.

Xiang Yu: But I see now that I was being narrow-minded and failed to account for individual freedom. I can only conclude that my predictive capabilities had flaws of which I was unaware.

X: I guess he was just trying to do what he thought was right.

X: I certainly didn't care for his plan to turn all Servants into Sabers, but it's nice to see at least one normal swordfighter among the Six Blades.

Jane: Hmm. I don't know if I'd call a giant, mechanical, half-man, half-horse guy with six arms “normal...”

Space Ishtar: Anyway, this ought to get Queens back to normal, so that's that little detour taken care of.

Space Ishtar: Come on, Fujimaru. We still have a good way to go before we reach Space Shinkageryu's home base.

???: As you are all going to die right here, there will be no further need to concern yourselves with your trip.

Space Ishtar: Huh!? A distortion in space-time!? The kind you only see for individual warps!?

Space Ishtar: Get back, Fujimaru! Something's headed our way!

Ashtart: How dare you speak about me that way. I am not some “thing.”

Ashtart: I am Ashtart, the three hundred and seventy-sixth leader of the Space Shinkageryu. Remember that, you barbaric bounty hunter!

Space Ishtar: ...

X: So that's the leader of Space Shinkageryu... She really does look just like Ishtar!

G:Ashtart: You have it backwards, cretin. She's the one who looks like me.

G:Ashtart: Go on then, Ishtar. That katana of yours isn't just for show, right? So draw it.

G:Ashtart: Though of course...

Ashtart: ...I can't imagine you know how to use it, seeing how you grew up in a pathetic backwater school like this.

Space Ishtar: That katana... That's...

Space Ishtar: That's the Space Shinkageryu katana that killed Father!!!


D:Space Ishtar: Ghh...! (I hate to admit it...but I can't hold a candle to her!)

Ashtart: ...What a joke. And here I thought you would at least put up a halfway decent fight.

Ashtart: But I suppose that's the best my good half can do. Being the evil half, my drive, skill, and training all wildly surpass yours.

Ashtart: I am frankly embarrassed that you and I are two halves of a whole.

D:Space Ishtar: Huh? I don't have any idea what you're taking about!

D:Space Ishtar: I don't even know who the hell you are!

F:Ashtart: Oh, don't worry. I'm in the same boat. If I'd known you existed, I'd have ended you ages ago.

F:Ashtart: Only one of us can become the Primordial Goddess, and you better believe it's gonna be me.

Ashtart: Now then. Long time no see, Master of Earth.

Ashtart: I commend you for managing to escape from Dark Maanna. It was very clever of you, thinking on your feet like that.

Fujimaru 1: Uh–

Fujimaru 2: Wha

Ashtart: But this little adventure of yours ends now. This time, I'm going to ensure you become my catalyst.

Ashtart: All right, come along. I'm willing to return you to your own world once I'm done with you.

Ashtart: Though of course, I can't promise I'll be able to return you in the same state you are now. If you're lucky, you won't be sucked so dry people could mistake you for a mummy.

D:Space Ishtar: Why you...!

D:Space Ishtar: Who do you think you are, saying shit like that with my face!?

D:Space Ishtar: Why do you keep calling Fujimaru a catalyst!? What're you planning to do with [♂ him/♀ her]!?

Ashtart: Exactly what I said. That earthling is going to be the stepping stone I need to reach my true form.

Ashtart: Or perhaps I should say, our true form, since I'm sure some part of you understands just as well as I do.

Ashtart: You didn't want to let [♂ him/♀ her] go because even you sensed you needed [♂ him/♀ her].

D:Space Ishtar: I-it's not like that at all! We just kind of wound up traveling together!

Ashtart: The Masters who once existed in this universe served to summon beings far greater than themselves.

Ashtart: Their blood, their soul, their very existence is meant to bring back what was lost.

Ashtart: And weak and powerless as [♂ he/♀ she] may be, that [♂ boy/♀ girl] from Earth is still a Master.

Ashtart: [♂ His/♀ Her] life will be the catalyst that awakens the Primordial Goddess from her long slumber.

D:Space Ishtar: Cut the crap! The long and short of it is that you're going to kill [♂ him/♀ her], aren't you!?

Ashtart: Now that's a bit more like it. Not a bad step-in for someone on her last legs.

Ashtart: But unfortunately for you, that's the best you can do. Now then, I think now's as good a time as any to reduce my good half to good quarters. Heh.

D:Space Ishtar: Back up! What did you say Fujimaru was? Weak and powerless? Ugh, if there's one thing I can't stand, it's stuck-up, arrogant bitches like you!

D:Space Ishtar: Go on, Master! Show this bitch how amazing you really are!

Fujimaru 1: You got it!

Space Ishtar: Now take THIS!

Ashtart: !

Ashtart: What just... You really are a Master, aren't you...?

Ashtart: ...What am I saying? Of course you are. That's the whole reason I brought you here.

Ashtart: ...Looks like I'm out of time. Right now, cheating the laws of the Shining Blue Galaxy like this is the best we can do.

Ashtart: All right. I'll let you take care of the catalyst for me just a while longer.

Ashtart: Besides, [♂ he'll/♀ she'll] never be able to return to [♂ his/♀ her] original world as long as I'm around.

Ashtart: Whether the Space Shinkageryu captures you, or whether you make your way to'll all be the same in the end.

Ashtart: I just hope you're able to put up a little more fight next time.

D:Jaguar Warrior: Who was that girl with the katana? Your little sister or something? Whoever she was, she scared the bejeezus out of me...

D:Jaguar Warrior: But anyway, my potential lingering trauma aside, the good news is that this closes the case once and for all. Thanks for all your help, everyone.

D:Jaguar Warrior: Now Queens can go back to the way it was...or maybe it's gotten rid of the old ways for good.

D:Jaguar Warrior: Either way, times change. That's just the way it is.

D:Jaguar Warrior: All I can do is keep whipping my cadets into shape until they graduate as proper Servants.

D:Jaguar Warrior: That goes for you too, Ishtar.

Space Ishtar: Me? But, I just got suspended indefinitely, even before I assaulted the dean...

G:Jaguar Warrior: That never happened! You're an innocent woman!

Space Ishtar: !

X: Plus, I distinctly remember it was Ms. Jaguar who dealt the finishing blow anyway.

Fujimaru 1: So that's what the whole “booyah” thing was about.

Fujimaru 2: I can still see it now: “Booyah!”

D:Jaguar Warrior: If you ever want to come back, there'll always be a seat open for you in my classroom.

D:Jaguar Warrior: It's just not the same without the Red Devil there to liven things up!

D:Jaguar Warrior: I could especially use your help whipping the cadets into shape in time for the next exhibition matches with our rival school!

Jane: What's this, Ishtarin? Does this mean you were a rough-and-tumble gal even when you went to Queens?

Jane: And here I remember you complaining all the time about how...

Jane:'d never had to carry anything heavier than gemstones before when you first started bounty hunting!

Space Ishtar: It wasn't a big deal! They were just some friendly games. I used to play for some of Queens' sports teams, like space tennis and space karuta, that's all!

Space Ishtar: Anyway, thank you for the kind words, Ms. Jaguar. I really appreciate that.

Space Ishtar: I can't promise I'll come back soon, since there's something I have to do right now, but someday...I'd like that.

D:Jaguar Warrior: I see... Well, whatever it is, I can see it must be really important to you.

D:Jaguar Warrior: All right then, off with you, seventy-sixth Queen Devil (read: student council president)!

D:Jaguar Warrior: I don't know who you're after or what you're planning to do, but whoever it is, give them Zenjou hell!

Fujimaru 1: No way...

Fujimaru 2: I never would've figured you for student council president!


Space Ishtar: Okay, Maanna's back up and running, so we're nearly ready to infiltrate Space Shinkageryu's base...

Space Ishtar: But before that, I thought we should have a little heart-to-heart, since I'm sure you have some questions for me.

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, I was wondering about the connection you have to Ashtart.

Space Ishtar: You and me both. That said... At this point, I can kind of piece things together.

Space Ishtar: It seems pretty clear that we're kind of like sisters. Never mind that we only just met.

Space Ishtar: Anyway, I grew up here, and she was brought up by the Space Shinkageryu.

Space Ishtar: I'm pretty sure that's all there is to it.

Fujimaru 1: Did you know you were one half of a goddess?

Space Ishtar: Kind of. I've always been able to sense a kind of wall between me and everyone else since I was little.

Space Ishtar: I thought I'd be pretty shocked when Father confessed to me that I wasn't really his daughter...

Space Ishtar: ...but I ended up just rolling with it, like it was happening to someone else.

Space Ishtar: When he told me...


– Space Ishtar's Fourteenth Birthday –

B:Ishtar: I'm home, Father! And more beautiful than ever☆

B:Ishtar: So hey, now that it's my fourteenth birthday and all, what's this big secret you've got to tell me?

Professor Tokiomi: Ish...tar... Thank're okay...

B:Ishtar: Huh? Father...? What happened!? Are you okay!?

Professor Tokiomi: Please... I need you to calm down and listen to me. I have so much to tell you, and precious little time.

Professor Tokiomi: ...The truth is, I'm not your real father. You...

Professor Tokiomi: ...You are half of the goddess core I found in an ancient shrine. A core which had been divided into good and evil.

Professor Tokiomi: You're not a Divine Spirit Servant. You are, in truth, one half of a genuine goddess...

B:Ishtar: ...Come on, Father, don't be ridiculous. You're, well, my father. I'm going to take over for you when–

Professor Tokiomi: Yes. That remains still just as true as ever. Even if you are the reincarnation of the Primordial Goddess...

Professor Tokiomi: long as you consider me your father, you will always be my daughter.

Professor Tokiomi: ...No matter what sort of impenetrable barriers our past–our history–may hold.

Professor Tokiomi: Those aren't for you to worry about. You're my daughter... And you have your whole life ahead of you.

B:Ishtar: ...

Professor Tokiomi: Unfortunately, I don't think the... Space going to see it that way...

Professor Tokiomi: There's no telling what the man who wounded me with his katana would do if he found you.

Professor Tokiomi: ...So you need to leave this planet, and hide where he'll never find you.

Professor Tokiomi: And...if the day should come when this universe turns red...I want you to do what you know to be right...

Professor Tokiomi: ...for I believe in you, and I know that you will make the right choice.

Professor Tokiomi: Oh, yes... There's still one more thing... I need to tell you...

Professor Tokiomi: ...It's been wonderful...being your father... Happy...birthday...Rin...

B:Ishtar: C-come on, Father, wake up... Please, open your eyes again! Father!!!

Space Ishtar: ......

Space Ishtar: ...Anyway, it doesn't really matter who I am, right?

Space Ishtar: Father once told me the only thing that determines whether I'm a god or a human is how I feel about it.

Space Ishtar: So yes, I might be one half of a goddess, but I'm also Professor Tokiomi's daughter–a good Ishtar.

Space Ishtar: The important thing is that I'm a Pseudo-Servant who really, truly believes herself to be a real Servant.

Space Ishtar: All that said, I'm not about to give up on avenging my father anytime soon!

Space Ishtar: It's the whole reason I learned how to use a katana.

Space Ishtar: I knew that if I used the same weapon my father's killer did, I'd be sure to run into him someday.

Space Ishtar: The main reason I volunteered to be your bodyguard back on Texas Beyond is because the Space Shinkageryu were after you.

Space Ishtar: I figured that if I stuck with you, I'd finally be able to avenge him.

Space Ishtar: And yes, that's still true...

Space Ishtar: But now, the most important reason I'm staying with you is because I want to help you get back home.

Space Ishtar: I feel like it's my responsibility.

Space Ishtar: Of course, part of that is because I despise Ashtart with every fiber of my being, and I refuse to let her get her way.

Space Ishtar: So...I guess what I'm trying to say is, will you continue to travel with me, just like we have been?

Space Ishtar: I won't deny that I've been taking advantage of you all this time. Hell, I have every intention of doing so again in the future.

Space Ishtar: But even so...will you trust me? Will you protect me until this is all over, Master?

Fujimaru 1: Of course!

Fujimaru 2: Pretty sure you're protecting me here, but otherwise, you bet!

Space Ishtar: I-I see. Once again, not a moment's hesitation, huh. Well, I'm glad to see you understand your position so well.

Space Ishtar: You really would be hopeless without me, wouldn't you? I don't know why I even bothered asking.

Jane: Oh Ishtarin, why can't you just say “thank you”? If you keep that up, you're not gonna get the ending you really want, you know.

Space Ishtar: Never mind that! Anyway, I trust you and X are good with that too?

Jane: Of course! I'm not gonna bail now that the final battle's almost here!

X: You're getting a little ahead of yourself, Jane. We still have a long way to go before we reach Space Shinkageryu's home base.

Space Ishtar: Okay! Now that we've got all that off our chests, all that's left is to kick Maanna into high gear!

Space Ishtar: Come on, guys, let's get going!

Space Ishtar: We're off to the forbidden zone, and the Space Shinkageryu's home base!

Section 11: Green Kitchen I

Space Ishtar: ...

X: ...

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, I'm not seeing anything anywhere nearby...

Space Ishtar: Yeah... I guess the Mute tracer alone just isn't enough.

Space Ishtar: At least we know the forbidden zone where their fortress is stationed is somewhere around here...

Space Ishtar: ...but we'll never find it unless we can narrow down our search area.

X: And there haven't been any eyewitness reports of Space Shinkageryu around here either. Hell, there aren't even any planets nearby.

X: So not only can we not ask around, we can't even stock up on essentials.

X: Since we only have about three days' worth of food left, it might be worth going back to the nearest station to buy more.

Space Ishtar: You have a point. Okay, since there's no sense wasting fuel and food looking around at random, let's go back and–

Jane: Guys, come quick! Some weird...things have attached themselves to the hull!

Space Ishtar: Really!? Maybe they're from Space Shinkageryu! Let's go capture them and find out what they know!

Jane: I'm not too sure, but it looks like they're probably Lancers! Would you two mind handling them!?

Jane: If it's okay with you guys, I'm just gonna stay here and focus on piloting, since I'm not gonna be much help anyway!

X: You got it! Since I'm a Saber...ish Servant myself, this'll be my time to shine!

X: If nothing else, I promise they won't have advantage over me! Just sit back and let me handle everything!

Space Ishtar: And needless to say, I've got just as much of an advantage against Lancers as X does.

Space Ishtar: Looks like you've got a choice to make, Fujimaru☆


Fujimaru 1: Nice work! You were awesome!

Space Ishtar: W-well, you know, I am a bounty hunter. I've fought harder battles than that in my sleep.

Fujimaru 2: Those aliens looked kind of familiar...

Space Ishtar: Really? I've never seen them before... I guess light-fingered animals like that are more common on Earth.

Jane: Whaaa...!? This can't be right!

Jane: All of our food is gone!? Not to mention all our Altrium!?

Jane: I can't believe it! Those monkeys made off with everything!

Space Ishtar: Wha–Everything!?

Space Ishtar: ...

X: ...

Jane: ...

E:X: ...

Fujimaru 1: ...

Talkie: Warning. I have detected deteriorating health conditions in all four crew members.

Talkie: I suggest you consume nutrients within six hours. Perhaps a finely aged steak with a glass of red wine.

Space Ishtar: Don't you think we would if we could? Trust me, there's nothing left to eat.

Space Ishtar: It's already been two days since the engine shut down...

Space Ishtar: I never would've thought a bunch of space monkeys would be the thing to end our travels...

Jane: And since we're right near the forbidden zone, there's no passing ships, and no one to respond to an SOS...

Jane: I've been on a lot of recon missions, but I can count the number that went this wrong on one hand...

Space Ishtar: Oh crap, I'm so hungry I'm starting to hallucinate... I can almost see a space colony...

Space Ishtar: Come on, Fujimaru... Do something...

Space Ishtar: Can't you use...a Command let us eat...our fill of curry...?

Fujimaru 1: Use a Command Spell to make curry, huh. That's an idea.

Space Ishtar: Ack, sorry... I was just kidding... Please don't waste a precious Command Spell on that...

Fujimaru 2: Hang on, Space Ishtar. You're not hallucinating.

Space Ishtar: ...Huh? What do you mean...I'm not hallucinating...?

Talkie: Small space colony detected up ahead. ID Code: BENI-234-130-D A++ B E B B

Talkie: Category: Space Diner Name: Green ■■■■■■ Kitchen

Jane: A space diner!? I can't believe they opened one all the way out here!

Talkie: Gourmet Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆ Customer Rating: ☆

Talkie: “The food is great, but it comes at you way too fast. I thought it was exciting at first, but it's just not what I'm looking for in a meal.”

Talkie: Shall I play back the other reviews?

Space Ishtar: Don't bother! Jane, go ahead and open up the canard!

Space Ishtar: We're going to grab hold of some ether and get Maanna to that colony by hook or by crook!

Jane: You got it! Just leave it to me!

Jane: We can't contact the colony's spaceport now, but it looks like we don't need authorization to dock there!

Jane: I'm pretty sure the whole thing's just one big restaurant!

Fujimaru 1: We're saved!

Space Ishtar: I'll say! Talk about escaping by the skin of our teeth! It's like getting a glass of ice water in hell, only hell is space and the ice water is a restaurant! Now come on, Fujimaru, let's go in!

Fujimaru 2: I'm still wondering why part of its name was redacted...

X: Yeah, something about this is worrying me too. Green Kitchen... Green Kitchen...?


Jane: Wow, there's nothing but greenery here! You'd think we were in a forest instead of a space colony!

Space Ishtar: This is no laughing matter, Jane. This colony doesn't have a spaceport, so we can't stock up on supplies.

Space Ishtar: I still can't believe I had to park Maanna on top of a hill. Where do they get off calling this colony a kitchen?

X: Green Kitchen... At a glance, it would appear to be a peaceful countryside restaurant.

X: But something is telling me to stay far, far away from this place, and that sense is only getting stronger...

X: Oogh. It's on the tip of my tongue, but I'm so hungry I can't think straight...

Fujimaru 1: Hey, it can't be worse than being stranded in space.

Fujimaru 2: At least we should be able to find food here.

Jane: Yup! Now that we're surrounded by nature, we shouldn't have any problem filling our tummies!

Jane: But first, we need to investigate the local terrain, plant life, and wildlife, X.

Jane: Forests can be mighty dangerous, so we can't just go around snacking on, say, those mushrooms there without making sure they're safe.

X: I know... Space mushrooms can have all sorts of effects...both good and bad...

X: Man, I wish Ex was here...

X: She might not've been happy about it, but she still shared her last secret stash of chocolate with me...

Space Ishtar: Ex? Is that your Jane? I mean, your partner?

X: ...Yes, that's right. Ex was my cherished partner.

X: Sometimes we were friends, sometimes we were rivals...

X: And in the end, we faced each other as mortal enemies, each fighting for our own survival.

X: You know, now that I think about it... we were more like you and Ashtart than you and Jane.

X: Unfortunately, the only way forward was for one of us to get rid of the other...

X: But if you're dealing with someone you can genuinely call your other half, you have to at least try to talk to them.

X: As much as it sucks, the only stories we can ever really know intimately are our own.

X: The only way to know what kind of life someone else has lived is to hear it from them.

Space Ishtar: ...

X: Sorry, but I'm gonna have to stop there. Real talk takes it out of you, and I'm out of calories to burn.

Jane: Hmm, I knew it. Someone's been tending this area.

Jane: Which means there has to be a building not too far from here. It could be past those woods.

Jane: Come on, everyone, we're almost to the restaurant! Don't give up! You can do it!

Fujimaru 1: Eh?

Space Ishtar: W-wow... It definitely has a, uh, unique atmosphere going for it...

Jane: Oh man, this place must've been around for ages! You don't find restaurants like this every day! Come on guys, let's go in!

Fujimaru 1: Hm? What's wrong, Ms. X?

Fujimaru 2: Aren't you gonna cross the bridge with us, Ms. X?

X: Hmm, I knew it. There's something familiar about this place...

X: Something that makes me feel like I'm going to get the scolding of a lifetime the moment I step inside... Or like some long repressed memory is about to burst out of my skull...

X: Oh well, whatever it is, I'm sure I'll remember it once I've had enough to eat! Hang on, I'm coming too!

Jane: Great! Okay, all together now... Table for four, please!

Gawain the Masher: Well, hello there. You must be hungry after coming all this way. Welcome to Green Kitchen's Camelot branch.

Gawain the Masher: Party of four, is it? As luck would have it, we don't have any reservations today, so please help yourselves to whichever table you like!

X: Bwa!?

Gawain the Masher: Oh my, is everything all right, miss? You seem somewhat flabbergasted.

X: Gawain? It is you, right? First that nonsense with Lancelot, and now you're running a restaurant?

Gawain the Masher: Well now... What an amazing stroke of luck. You must have known me during my old life.

Gawain the Masher: Unfortunately, I'm afraid I lost my memories before arriving here.

Gawain the Masher: All I know is that I was drifting through space after having been severely wounded, and just so happened to wind up on this colony.

Gawain the Masher: Fortunately, Teacher managed to save my life, but the only thing I remember from my past is my name...

Gawain the Masher: I can only guess that I must have led a cruel and terrible life before finding my place here.

Gawain the Masher: Now, to atone for my past sins, I spend my days teaching children the sword and tending to this kitchen's garden.

X: I see... Thank you. That was very clear.

X: In that case, I would be happy to be one of your customers.

X: I never would have figured you for the laid-back farming life, but it's nice to know I can still be surprised!

X: All right then, let's eat already!

X: Bring us as much of the cheapest item on the menu as you can possibly carry!

Gawain the Masher: Hmm. I would be happy to oblige, but I'm afraid you don't seem to have any ingredients.

Space Ishtar: Ingredients? Why would we bring our own ingredients to a restaurant?

Gawain the Masher: Well, this won't do at all. If one wishes to eat food, one must collect it oneself. This is a key tenet of British life and culinary etiquette!

Gawain the Masher: Meals encapsulate the law of the jungle. In order to keep one's own life, one must be willing to take other lives.

Gawain the Masher: That is why the Green Kitchen's Camelot branch only prepares food using ingredients that our customers have hunted themselves.

Space Ishtar: Hang on! We don't have anywhere near the strength we'd need to go hunting!

Space Ishtar: Besides, what kind of restaurant makes its customers bring their own ingredients!?

Space Ishtar: That's not a restaurant! It's just a campsite!

X: I see... If we are playing by Britain's rules here, then it seems we have no choice but to comply.

X: I'm afraid you'll just have to accept it, Ishtar. On Planet Britain, campsites are considered fine restaurants in their own right.

Space Ishtar: What is WRONG with that planet!?

Gawain the Masher: Hahahaha. For a knight, milady, dining on the battlefield is as normal as dining at a table.

Gawain the Masher: That said, I can certainly understand the difficulty of hunting on an empty stomach, so here you are. A little something from me, on the house.

Fujimaru 1: A small mountain of mashed potatoes!

Fujimaru 2: A huge pile of buttery spuds!

Gawain the Masher: Once you have satisfied your hunger and refreshed your spirits with these, I encourage you to go hunting out on the nearby mountain.

Gawain the Masher: Rest assured that every form of life that inhabits the Green Kitchen is one-hundred-percent tax-free.

Gawain the Masher: Now go forth, do battle, and emerge victorious. That is something we all must do for as long as we draw breath.

Gawain the Masher: Once you have returned with sufficient ingredients, I, Gawain, the Sword of the Sun, shall use them to prepare the finest meal of your lives!

Jane: Well this sure was an unexpected turn of events. And that's before we talk about that chef...

Space Ishtar: I'll say... I can't even remember the last time I saw such an orthodox Saber.

Space Ishtar: I also couldn't help but notice he was wearing six gold Saber Badges. Do you think he might be one of the Six Bla–

Fujimaru 1: Almost certainly.

Fujimaru 2: I'm already steeling myself for disappointment.

Space Ishtar: You think so too, huh, Fujimaru? Ugh, I knew it!

Space Ishtar: How am I gonna avenge Father if all the enemy's officers are these piss-poor excuses for swordfighters!?

X: Now, now, never mind that. We still have food to find, after all.

X: Luckily for us, I'm an expert when it comes to camping out. I'm sure we could live here for a couple months, as abundant as this mountain's food supply is.

X: So I say we enjoy this unplanned camping trip as one last opportunity for some rest before the end.

X: Once we've collected enough Altrium to continue our journey, had a delicious meal at Green Kitchen...

X: ...and left our campsite behind with a smile, we'll have made some lovely vacation memories!

Section 12: Green Kitchen II

X: Good, that's enough supplies. We could just take them back to the Maanna now, but then again...

Jane: Yeah... We can't just leave one of the Six Blades behind when he's right here in front of us.

Jane: I feel a little bad doing this to Gawain, but I think we'd better go on one last hunt before we leave☆

Space Ishtar: Oh well! Whoever we're up against now, it doesn't change the fact that this colony was a lot of fun!

Fujimaru 1: It sure was!

Fujimaru 2: All thanks to you being here.

Space Ishtar: ...!

Space Ishtar: W-well of course. I mean, as the goddess of justice, I pretty much have to help those who can't help themselves, like a certain Master I could name.

Space Ishtar: You know, if it wasn't for me (read: you), you (read: I) would've died back on Texas Beyond.

Space Ishtar: So you better appreciate that.

Space Ishtar: So, uh, I know this might be kind of beside the point now, but...

Space Ishtar: What did you think when you found out I was half of a goddess? It probably creeped you out a bit, right?

Space Ishtar: Like, maybe you thought I was gross, or a relic, or wondered why I'd pretend to be a Servant at all...

Space Ishtar: I mean, you must've felt SOMETHING along those lines, right?

Fujimaru 1: Uh, no? Why would I?

Space Ishtar: Never mind! Forget I said anything!

Space Ishtar: Anyway, we'd better catch up to Jane and X. Come on, Fujimaru.

Space Ishtar: I'll never forget that look on [♂ his/♀ her] face as long as I live.

Space Ishtar: It clear that [♂ he/♀ she] trusted me implicitly. So much more than I deserved.

Space Ishtar: ...Hehe. Never mind that [♂ he's/♀ she's] a little... Okay, a lot useless!

Gawain the Masher: Welcome back, chirp. I see you managed to find all the ingredients you need, chirp.

Space Ishtar: Um...why are you chirping?

Gawain the Masher: Ah, my apologies. I'm afraid I'm still getting used to working in the service industry, so it just slipped out.

Gawain the Masher: All right, please have a seat at your table, and I'll get to work on your ingredients.

Gawain the Masher: Oh, but first, in order for us to better prepare your ingredients to suit your personal tastes...

Gawain the Masher: ...I would like you all to answer a short questionnaire.

Gawain the Masher: Question One: What are your best attacks?

Space Ishtar: Huh? Uh, Buster, I guess? I like red.

Gawain the Masher: Question Two: What is your preferred battle tactic?

Jane: Hmm. Buffing, maybe?

Jane: I definitely like raising my own spirits more than I like bumming out my opponents!

Gawain the Masher: Question Three: What are your weaknesses?

X: Casters and Archers, of course! After all, I'm a Saber!

Gawain the Masher: Thank you for answering honestly. Your food will be ready shortly.

Gawain the Masher: On my honor as Gawain, Sword of the Sun and tributary of the Space Shinkageryu, I vow you will not leave unsatisfied.

Gawain the Masher: Oh yes, if the food should happen to get here first, please feel free to go ahead and dig in.

Gawain the Masher: At Green Jigoku Kitchen, we put the customer first. We're not in the habit of policing your table manners!

X: Huh? Hang on. Did he say Jigoku Kitchen? And now that I think about it, this decor is... Wait. Could it be...?

Space Ishtar: Well, he's off to cook... Although, I wonder what he meant by “if the food gets here first”?

Jane: Well, Gawain can be kind of an airhead. He probably just misspo–

Freshly Cooked Meal:


Space Ishtar: The food!

Jane: Got here first!?

X: Oh man, it looks so good...

X: I only wish these chills that've been running down my spine for so long weren't ruining my appetite...

Jane: That's not the problem, X! Our food wants to eat US!

X: Oh, that? Well, it has been prepared British style, so that's no surprise.

X: I see that even without his memories, Gawain's mashing skills are as good as ever.

Space Ishtar: Seriously, what in the Servantverse is wrong with Planet Britain!?

Space Ishtar: There will be time to be appalled later!

Space Ishtar: Come on guys, let's show this meal who's on top of the food chain! And no, I can't believe what I'm saying either!


Space Ishtar: Stop, stop! We got so carried away that we ended up taking out the chef too!

Space Ishtar: All right, it's beyond obvious at this point, but just to make sure...

Space Ishtar: You're one of Space Shinkageryu's Six Blades, aren't you!?

Gawain the Masher: Huh? No, milady, I am but a humble chef. Indeed, I've never even heard of such a position.

Jane: Oh come on! Just look at all those badges you're wearing!

Gawain the Masher: These? These are nothing more than a symbol of the many Dislikes the madam so kindly gave me.

Space Ishtar: Oh crap, really...!? I'm so sorry! Are you okay? You're not hurt TOO badly, right!?

Gawain the Masher: Please, you need not concern yourselves with me. You all fought wonderfully...

Gawain the Masher: Even when confronted with your greatest weaknesses, you persevered and emerged triumphant...

Gawain the Masher: I could ask for no greater customers with which to enjoy the Servantverse's greatest food... Bon...appétit!

Fujimaru 1: What was that all about?

Fujimaru 2: Madam... “The madam”? It couldn't be...

X: Th-th-that sound of wooden sandals... I knew it!

???: What's all this commotion in my lobby about, chirp? Did Sir Gawain ruin another meal?

???: Well now. I don't believe we've had the pleasure, chirp.

???: I'm Beni-Enma, the space sparrow in charge of this inn.

Beni-Enma: How good of you to come to our little restaurant all this way out on the space frontier.

Beni-Enma: As one of Space Shinkageryu's Six Blades and the wielder of the Proprietor Sword, chirp, I am pleased to welcome you.


Fujimaru 1: The madam of this place is one of the Six Blades!?

Fujimaru 2: One of the Six Blades is a space sparrow!?

Space Ishtar: Hm? What's wrong, X?

Space Ishtar: Why did you pull your hat down over your eyes and wrap your scarf around your face?

X: X? I'm not X. I'm Z. I'm only wearing blue because, um, I'm the player two palette swap.

Beni-Enma: ...(Sigh) I thought you looked familiar, chirp.

Beni-Enma: You're the girl who failed my crash course in junk food.

Beni-Enma: You've got guts–or should I say, nerves, lying to my face like that.

Beni-Enma: All right, stick out your tongue. I'm going to use it to demonstrate Space Enjaku Battoujutsu Technique Thirty-Four:

Beni-Enma: “Cutting a Sausage to Look Like an Octopus”!

X: Wait! I was just dreaming, or rather, wishing that were reality! Please, try not to see it as actually lying!

Beni-Enma: ...Hmm. It seems you were speaking the truth there, chirp.

Beni-Enma: Very well, given our history, I'm willing to give you the benefit of the doubt.

Beni-Enma: You weren't the first student I've had who signed up for my course thinking junk food would be easy to make in large quantities...

Beni-Enma: ...but you were definitely the first, and last, student I ever taught who thought to “taste test” every single space potato before even cooking them.

Jane: What!? That's terrible! Don't you know it's dangerous to eat space potatoes raw!?

X: Yes, I do know, which is why I always cook them now! I didn't attend Ms. Beni's classes for nothing!

Beni-Enma: Really? The same girl who used to ignore my one-hundred-percent foolproof manual in favor of “winging it...”

Beni-Enma: ...meaning she'd just eat the ingredients because she couldn't make any actual dishes...learned how to use heat?

Beni-Enma: This may just call for a refresher course.

Beni-Enma: How about it? Are you ready to take my class again, and see it through to the end this time?

X: Absolutely not, chirp! My very hardest of hard passes, ma'am, chirp!

Fujimaru 1: Why do these cooking classes always seem to mentally scar their students?

Fujimaru 2: Man, I am never signing up for one of these classes if I can help it...

Beni-Enma: All right, enough about X. It seems my apprentice chef here has caused you a great deal of trouble.

Beni-Enma: As the madam of Jigoku Kitchen, I could never forgive myself if I were to let you leave now without making amends.

Beni-Enma: I take it you're all travelers, chirp? You're the second ones in all of Jigoku Kitchen's history to come here without a reservation.

Beni-Enma: The first was a bearded professor named...Tokiomi, I think. He was out investigating ancient ruins in this area, and stumbled across us when he got lost.

Beni-Enma: You know, you remind me of him, young lady. Ahh, that brings back memories!

Space Ishtar: Really? I guess me and Father both exude the same adventurer's spirit!

Beni-Enma: No, not you. I was talking to the blonde with the ponytail.

Jane: ...

Beni-Enma: You aren't the kind of Servant you appear to be, are you, chirp? I can almost see the threads of fate that have wrapped themselves around you.

Beni-Enma: Listen. I'm telling you this for your own good. Beyond this point lies the zone of no return. Do I need to spell out what will happen if you go there?

Jane: Gee, I'm sorry, but I have nooo idea what you're talking about!

Jane: Anyway, you're part of Space Shinkageryu, right, Beni-Enma? Are you sure you haven't seen our faces before? Like, say, on a wanted poster?

Beni-Enma: Chirp?

Beni-Enma: ...Now that you mention it, I think I might have seen your pictures on the paper I used to wrap the sweet pota–Ahhh!

Beni-Enma: It's you! You're the rogue good guys getting in Space Shinkageryu's way!

Beni-Enma: I knew you were trouble, but I never dreamed you'd be so reckless as to make your way to the center of Green Jigoku Kitchen, chirp!

Beni-Enma: Weren't you at all worried about showing up on security cameras and whatnot!? I can't believe you managed to survive this long!

Fujimaru 1: Well, there weren't any security measures anywhere, so...

Fujimaru 2: I mean, it seemed like a perfectly peaceful colony, so...

Beni-Enma: ...You're not wrong.

Beni-Enma: You must be the Master from the wanted poster. You're a clever one, aren't you?

Beni-Enma: It's true. Jigoku Kitchen doesn't have any ungainly systems like that.

Beni-Enma: Do you know why that is?

Space Ishtar: No, but I did think it was strange. If we'd known this place belonged to Space Shinkageryu, I would've expected it to be crawling with guards.

Space Ishtar: But instead, aside from all the wildlife, this place is like something out of a picture book. Why is that?

Beni-Enma: Because we're understaffed and operating on a shoestring budget.

Space Ishtar: ...Huh?

Beni-Enma: You need Servants to stand guard, and they don't work for free, right? But HQ hasn't even sent us a single credit.

Beni-Enma: Besides, it's the off-season. There's no point keeping my service sparrows and fighting sparrows on hand when we don't have any customers, so they're all out working other jobs until business picks back up.

Beni-Enma: Even if I managed to capture you, I don't have anyone here to take you to HQ, so I'd have to have you take yourselves there, which would obviously defeat the purpose.

Beni-Enma: I was honestly hoping I could avoid getting involved in all this, chirp.

Space Ishtar: You're that strapped for cash when you're this close to your base!? But I thought Space Shinkageryu was doing well for itself!

Beni-Enma: Lady Ashtart hates wasting money, so she's been slashing our budget ever since she took over.

Beni-Enma: She's unforgiving when it comes to spending. So unforgiving in fact, that we've seen no end of smaller Space Shinkageryu dojos going under.

Space Ishtar: Ugh, what an idiot... I guess she's one of those typical bean counter CEOs who only sees numbers instead of people...

Beni-Enma: However... Now that I've encountered the rogues on the wanted poster myself, I have no choice but to fight.

Beni-Enma: Draw your sword, half-a-goddess. I, Beni-Enma, will measure your strength personally, chirp!

X: Wait, Ms. Beni! I don't understand! Last I checked, you didn't have anything to do with the Space Shinkageryu!

X: Why are you running an inn for them all the way out here in the space sticks!?

X: Is there some reason for this you're not telling us!?

Beni-Enma: Be quiet! We all have our reasons for the choices we make! You can't get by in the Servantverse on sympathy alone!

Beni-Enma: I might have forgotten the heroic ideals I once aspired to, but I'll never forget the quick-draw skills I've been studying since I was a little sparrow!

Beni-Enma: Besides, I can't let you get away without landing at least one stroke of my blade. I may be on the brink of bankruptcy, but I still have my pride!

Beni-Enma: Chirp! The time for mercy and Likes is gone! Now come at me however you wish!

Space Ishtar: All right, if that's how you want to do this, I'm game! I'll show you just how good I am with my sword, one katana-wielder to another!


Beni-Enma: Phew... Your cooking skills may be nonexistent, but you're not half bad with a katana, chirp.

Space Ishtar: Hold on. How can you be so sure I can't cook when I haven't even tried cooking anything!?

Beni-Enma: I can precisely tell the level of one's cooking skill by crossing swords with them. In your case, you can't make anything that's not Chinese food.

Fujimaru 1: So how come you joined Space Shinkageryu?

Beni-Enma: Well... They had an ad for an incredibly inexpensive home security service where I could get sixty percent off for a hundred years if I signed up that day.

Beni-Enma: I was so enticed by the prospect that I signed up on the spot, before I thoroughly read the contract...

Jane: I'm guessing one of the terms of service you agreed to was serving Space Shinkageryu as one of the Six Blades?

Beni-Enma: Chirp chirp! Ah, if only I'd actually read the contract before I signed it! How could I be so stupid!?

Beni-Enma: Though in my defense, that WAS the only part of the contract written in ancient space Latin...

Space Ishtar: Are you kidding!? That's not just evil, that's downright diabolical! That doesn't even sound like it should be legally binding!

Beni-Enma: ...Anyway, that's all I have to say.

Beni-Enma: I was hoping if I left you all alone rather than looking for you, you'd go on to defeat the Space Shinkageryu some day and free me from this contract...

Beni-Enma: ...but I see now that I was only fooling myself.

Beni-Enma: All right, you win. Go ahead and do what you will with me! Roast, rotisserie, deep-fry... Whatever you like!

Space Ishtar: Huh!? We're not going to eat you! I feel bad enough for you as it is, so I sure as hell don't need that on my conscience!

Space Ishtar: Besides, we victims of Space Shinkageryu ought to stick together.

Space Ishtar: So here's an idea. If we forget this whole thing ever happened, will you give us their home base's coordinates?

Space Ishtar: You conveniently “forget” to mention to the Space Shinkageryu higher-ups that we were ever here, and we make our way directly to them.

Space Ishtar: Sounds like a solid win-win to me, don't you think?

Beni-Enma: ...I can't do that. Sparrow or not, I still have a duty to uphold my contractual obligations, chirp.

Beni-Enma: That said... As the proprietress of this inn, it's none of my business what my customers do in the lounge.

Beni-Enma: See that old computer there? It's got a tour guide station set up for new recruits.

Beni-Enma: I remember the ones headed for headquarters would often search for “Space Shinkageryu headquarters.”

Fujimaru 1: That's perfect! Thanks, Ms. Beni!

Fujimaru 2: You're the best, Ms. Beni!

Beni-Enma: Hehe. There are few things that bring a proprietress more joy than receiving a customer's thanks.

Beni-Enma: Anyway, the rest is all up to you now, chirp.

Beni-Enma: Fortunately, it looks like the Dark Maanna Space Fortress is pretty close to here...

Space Ishtar: Oh wow, you're right! It's practically just a hop, skip, and space jump away!

Space Ishtar: Come on, guys, let's hurry back to Maanna! We've got to catch up before they get too far away!

Space Ishtar: Thanks, Beni-Enma! When this is all over, I promise I'll come back here and spend the night for real!

Beni-Enma: I appreciate the thought, but are you aware that Dark Maanna's security systems are impenetrable!?

Beni-Enma: Unless you have some way to get past them, you'll just get shot down the moment you get within firing range, chirp!

Jane: Don't worry! We know their boarding codes, so we can sneak in easy as pie!

Beni-Enma: Chirp! In that case, I have no objections! Just make sure you watch your backs up there!

Fujimaru 1: You take care too, Ms. Beni!

Fujimaru 2: Before we go, could I ask you about Sir Gawain?

Beni-Enma: Sir Gawain? Some of my sparrows found him drifting around the Sargasso and rescued him.

Beni-Enma: He hadn't been staying here long when he said he wanted to share the taste of his homeland's cooking with the rest of the Servantverse.

Beni-Enma: I told him “no” so many times I lost count, but in the end, I gave in and leased him a place.

Beni-Enma: As someone dedicated to the art of cooking, I was torn about letting him open a British restaurant here...

Beni-Enma: ...but when I realized the money from him paying rent would let me hire three more sparrows, I just couldn't turn him down...

Space Ishtar: Man, you weren't kidding about running on a shoestring budget, huh?

X: Well, I can't imagine they get much business all the way out here. The only reservations they must get are probably all from Space Shinkageryu.

Beni-Enma: Unfortunately, even if they do sneak into Dark Maanna without getting caught...they'll still have to contend with Space Shinkageryu's two strongest swordfighters.

Beni-Enma: Lord Sigurd, the Dragon-slayer Sword, aka the God Killer–the oldest and strongest of all the Six Blades...

Beni-Enma: And Munenori, a direct descendant of Space Shinkageryu's founder, chirp...

Beni-Enma: Those girls will need to face both of them before they can reach Lady Ashtart. I hope they all survive...

Space Ishtar: All right, Maanna is prepped and ready to launch! Get in, guys!

X: You know, everything else aside, Sir Gawain's space British food was...

X: Well, it certainly wasn't tasty, but there was something about it that reminded me of home.

Gawain the Masher: That's very kind of you to say.

Space Ishtar & Jane & X: How are you still alive!?

Gawain the Masher: Oh, that? Yes, I may have sustained massive head trauma, but as they say, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

Gawain the Masher: Especially if that strength is bolstered by eating good, healthy space British food every day.

Space Ishtar: You sure you don't have that backwards? It looks more to me like you have to be strong in the first place just to be able to stomach that slop every day.

Gawain the Masher: Hahaha, you may well be right. But as long as it all works out, I'm not worried about how we get there.

Gawain the Masher: On a different note, I overheard your conversation with the madam.

Gawain the Masher: I had no idea she was only following the Space Shinkageryu's orders out of a sense of contractual obligation... I am ashamed I failed to realize this myself.

Gawain the Masher: So I think I will remain at this colony a while longer. Besides, I still need to repay these sparrows for saving me.

Gawain the Masher: The madam kindly agreed to teach me more about cooking during my stay, so I hope I will have a chance to let you all taste the fruits of my training.

Fujimaru 1: Jigoku Kitchen vs. Space Britain Cooking!

Fujimaru 2: I'd pay good money to watch that...

X: I have faith in you, Sir Gawain! I know your natural obliviousness will help you expand the traditions of British cooking!

X: Oh, but guys, please don't get the wrong idea! Not all British cooking is, THAT!

Section 13: Dark Maanna

B:Ashtart: ...She's coming. Ishtar... My other half is drawing near.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Are you sure, my lady? We have not received any reports to that effect.

Ashtart: I can tell. The sheer revulsion she inspires in me is enough to make my fingers tremble in disgust.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I see. That is a very good sign.

B:Ashtart: How can this be a good sign? I'm so angry I could kill you just because you're the closest living thing.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: If those bounty hunters are on their way, they will of course be bringing the catalyst with them.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Which means that soon, at long last, the shrine, the goddess, and the catalyst will all be gathered here at the entrance to the Origin Universe.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Of course, we certainly do not need to keep those bounty hunters around. I will have fifty fighters stationed around our position.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Once we have recovered the catalyst, they can then turn the bounty hunters' ship into so much space dust.

Ashtart: There is no need for that. I will see to Ishtar's execution myself.

Ashtart: Yes, you may have those fighters surround their ship and recover the catalyst...

Ashtart: ...but once the catalyst is safe in [♂ his/♀ her] cell, I want Ishtar brought before me.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...As you wish.

Ashtart: By the way.

Ashtart: Given the route they were taking, they'll have to pass by Green Kitchen to get to Dark Maanna, right?

Ashtart: So why haven't we heard from Enma? She should have noticed something.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Given that she did not contact us, she must have either let them pass, or simply failed to read the wanted poster.

Ashtart: How could she do that!? She's the only–er, the most earnest Saber among the Six Blades!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I expect she was most likely unable to act due to her financial difficulties.

Ashtart: Huh?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: This zone has nothing in the way of tourists, which of course means the Kitchen has nothing in the way of revenue.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: The only money she makes is from the occasional Space Shinkageryu recruit who goes there for the hot springs, which is to say, next to nothing.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Even the sparrows who work here only do so to earn money for the Kitchen.

Ashtart: ...So that's what those birds are doing here.

Ashtart: I always wondered where they came from whenever I passed one, but I never would have thought...

Ashtart: I understand. After we've completed this plan, I'll give some thought to the Kitchen's financial woes.

Ashtart: I should be able to resolve their problems once I have awakened and become a perfect evil goddess with all the Servantverse under my control.

Space Apprentice: (Chirp! If not even the ruler of the whole Servantverse can solve the Kitchen's problems, who can, chirp?)

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Very well, Lady Ashtart, please wait at your throne. I will pass your command on to the fighter pilots.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: We will begin the awakening ritual as soon as the catalyst arrives. Soon, your patience will be rewarded.

Ashtart: ...

Ashtart: ...How strange. This sense of unease I feel is only growing more intense. It's as though my entire body is...smoldering...

Ashtart: It's not just my revulsion for Ishtar, either. I think I'm...afraid to be in this place...?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Are you there, Sigurd?

???: I am. What can I do for you, my lord?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: That bounty hunter girl must not get any closer to Lady Ashtart.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Once we have retrieved the catalyst, dispose of the interlopers in whatever way you see fit.

???: ...Understood. I hate to go against our leader's wishes, but if you think this is for the best, it shall be done.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...Of course it is for the best. Bringing the two of them together could awaken the real one.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: And we are not so foolish as to awaken a being we cannot fully control.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Lady Ashtart's aspect is all the Primordial Goddess needs.

Jane: Warp-out successful. Purging auxiliary energy systems now.

Jane: We've officially arrived at Forbidden Zone A03: The Red Wasteland's Crown.

Fujimaru 1: We finally caught up!

Fujimaru 2: So that black ball over there must be Dark Maanna!

Space Ishtar: That's their fortress!? It's way bigger than I was expecting!

X: We are talking about an evil organization's home base. If you ask me, anything smaller would be a disappointment.

X: I see they've already sent out their fighters. What do we do now, Ishtar?

Space Ishtar: No way we're backing down after coming this far! Engines to max!

Space Ishtar: Hold on tight, Fujimaru!

Space Ishtar: As long as we can attach ourselves to the fortress, our boarding codes should open their hatch! They have to!

Jane: They've started firing at us! Low power settings though, so looks like warning shots!

Jane: They must know they can't shoot us down as long as Fujimaru's on board!

Space Ishtar: Which means the next thing they try will probably be–

Fujimaru 1: They're trying to force their way inside!

Space Ishtar: Exactly. Which means we've got the home field advantage! Take over the controls for a while, would you, X!?

Space Ishtar: Come on, Master! Let's get out there and show these punks who they're dealing with!


Jane: There, we're attached to one of the fortress's apertures! Our boarding codes check out! Here comes the homing beacon!

Jane: You guys ready to charge headfirst into their launch bay!?

Space Ishtar: Do it!

Space Ishtar: X, once we're in, can you take over the command room and close the hatch behind us!?

X: Leave it to me! I'm an old hand at these kinds of breaking and enterings! I'll make sure we're completely cut off from the outside!

Space Ishtar: All hands, move out! We've got to find Ashtart and capture her as quickly as possible!

Fujimaru 1: Looks like someone's here to greet us...

Fujimaru 2: It's a space knight right out of an old-school sci-fi movie!

D:???: Welcome, foreign Master.

D:???: I am one of Space Shinkageryu's Six Blades: Sigurd the Dragon-slayer Sword.

Sigurd: I'm afraid I must ask the other guests to leave now. Take up your sword, half-goddess.

Sigurd: As a sign of respect for the Spirit Origin you share with Lady Ashtart, I will kill you in a fair fight.

Space Ishtar: Fine by me. Once I beat you, that'll be the last of both the Six Blades and this whole Saber insanity.

Space Ishtar: (Though it looks like he doesn't use a katana either... Which means the man who killed Father is still out there!)

Sigurd: There is one thing I don't understand. Tell me, half-goddess, before we begin: Why travel with her?

Space Ishtar: Huh? You mean Jane?

Sigurd: Yes. She and I are both survivors of the team that set out to kill the Primordial Goddess two thousand years ago, after she had been driven mad by her lust for revenge on all Servantkind.

Sigurd: Your companion there used a galactic bear trap of sorts to pin the goddess in place...

Sigurd: ...while I used my demonic sword's Ten Suns form to obliterate her Spirit Core.

Sigurd: Without Space Scout Calamity Jane's keen eye, our team would never have been able to defeat her.

Sigurd: So tell me, as one of the Primordial Goddess's alter egos, why are you running around with the woman who sealed your original goddess self away?

Space Ishtar: ...

X: Is that true, Jane!?

Fujimaru 1: ...Jane?

Jane: Yup, it's true! I was totally planning to kill Ishtarin dead in the end!

Jane: I mean, she's one half of the Primordial Goddess, right? No way was I gonna let her live☆

Jane: Honestly, I still don't know what made Tokiomi want to raise her as his daughter.

Jane: That's exactly why we should make sure scholars get proper licenses before they work with genuinely dangerous stuff.

Jane: Anyway, none of that is really important right now since we're about to fight!

Jane: What's the matter, Sigurd? Have you grown rusty over the years or something?

Space Ishtar: Hold up. Hold up! You're a survivor of a team that set out to kill the goddess...?

Space Ishtar: But, that happened a long, long time ago, right!? So then, why were you working as Father's assistant!?

Space Ishtar: No... More importantly...

Space Ishtar: Were you just lying when you told me to become a bounty hunter, or consoled me after Father was killed!?

Space Ishtar: Did you even mean a word of it, Jane!?

Jane: Hehe. Sorry!

Sigurd: Now I see. So you were simply trying to do your job, albeit in your own way.

Sigurd: That answers my question. Now, let us begin our battle.

Space Ishtar: Wha...!? H-hey, come on, I'm still really shaken up here! Shouldn't an old, honorable swordfighter like you be able to gimme a moment to just process!?


Fujimaru 1: No...!

Sigurd: Resistance is futile. Your swordplay is no match for mine.

Sigurd: Lord Munenori ordered me to dispose of all of you except the catalyst...

Sigurd: But as a knight of Space Shinkageryu, my loyalties lie with the commander.

Sigurd: And I need not hear her speak to ascertain her true will beyond a shadow of a doubt.

Sigurd: She wishes for the catalyst to be brought to her, and the rest of you to be imprisoned.

Sigurd: Farewell, Jane. As for you, half-goddess.

Sigurd: Power absent order only invites chaos.

Sigurd: But some thought such power could be contained as long as it was given form, regardless of what that form may do or think.

Sigurd: I commend Professor Tokiomi's attempt to do so, but it seems his methods were unequal to the task.

Space Ishtar: ...


Ashtart: (Sigurd only brought me the catalyst? What was he thinking? I swear, when will he learn to not go off on his own?)

Ashtart: (...Well, I guess it's all right. I'll still get to do everything I planned, just not in the order I'd originally intended...)

Ashtart: ...Hmph. So, you've finally returned to me, Master of Earth.

Ashtart: I'll admit, you surprised me back in Queens by temporarily enhancing my more pathetic half.

Ashtart: But I'm afraid that ability will do you no good here, since there are no Servants to come to your aid.

Ashtart: ...

Ashtart: ......

Ashtart: ............

Fujimaru 1: Welp, this is awkward, huh?

Fujimaru 2: Sorry I don't have anything interesting to say.

Ashtart: ...There is no need for us to converse.

Ashtart: Having said that...I suppose we could talk about everything that's transpired up to this point. Especially since we still have time.

Ashtart: So as the leader of Space Shinkageryu, I demand you tell me how you and my lesser half defeated almost all of the Six Blades together.

Fujimaru 1: No problemo, boss lady☆

Ashtart: How dare you still speak to me so casually!? You'd best start treating me with the respect I'm due!

Fujimaru 2: Where are the others now? Are they okay?

Ashtart: Sigurd appears to have elected to throw them in the holding cells, but rest assured...once the ritual is over, I'll make sure they're executed.

Fujimaru 1: ...And now, here we are.

Ashtart: ...I see. Well, that turned out to be a tremendous waste of time. What an incredibly boring journey you've had.

F:Ashtart: All right, my turn. I'm going to tell you something that's just as much for your benefit as mine.

F:Ashtart: After all, you don't want to simply be the proverbial lamb to the slaughter–or altar, in this case–do you?

F:Ashtart: So I'm going to tell you what it is that Space Shinkageryu is trying to accomplish...

F:Ashtart: ...and what will happen to the Servantverse once you, myself, and the Origin Universe have all played their parts.

Jane: ...Look, you know how it is, right? I have responsibilities I need to fulfill.

Jane: So as a survivor of the goddess hunt's A team, I couldn't let Tokiomi just go ahead with his research on the Primordial Goddess, right?

Jane: But when I realized I couldn't talk him out of it, I decided my only choice was to become his assistant and keep an eye on things.

Jane: Then when he brought the goddess's Spirit Core back from the forbidden zone, it split in half...

Jane: ...and when he then said he was going to raise her to be human, well, what else could I do but stick around so I could see how it turned out?

Jane: That way, if I saw any signs that she was turning out to be like the goddess of vengeance legends tell about, I'd have plenty of chances to take my gun and pop her right in the back of the head.

Jane: But then I went and forgot all about that up until Sigurd reminded me! Sorry, Ishtarin☆

X: So...does that mean you're still the same old Jane you've always been then?

Jane: I guess that depends on Ishtarin. I mean, I sure didn't tell her why I got mixed up in all of this stuff to begin with.

Space Ishtar: Then there's no problem. I already knew exactly what you were apologizing about earlier, anyway.

Space Ishtar: Not to mention I also already had a preeetty good idea how cold and calculating you are deep know?

Jane: Oh man, when you put it like that, even I can't help but feel a little bad.

Space Ishtar: Okay, enough of that. Now let's figure out a way out of this mess, shall we?

Space Ishtar: They took Fujimaru away after Sigurd beat us, right? Then there's no time to waste.

Space Ishtar: We need to break down this door and get after [♂ him/♀ her].

X: I'd love to do just that, but the walls here are oddly hard...

X: It looks like they're made out of something unusual. Something normal Servant Noble Phantasms can't even scratch.

???: Right you are, Assassin. Dark Maanna Space Fortress is but a cover name.

???: This fortress is in truth an artificial shrine designed to serve as an altar to the Primordial Goddess.

???: Its true name is “Ancient Shrine Bel Maanna (Imitation).”

Space Ishtar: Hmph, too cowardly to even talk to us face-to-face, huh?

Space Ishtar: I don't know who you are and frankly, I don't want to know, but isn't introducing yourself supposed to be the bare minimum courtesy among civilized people?

???: I see little point in giving my name to those who will soon be too dead to make use of it... But, very well.

???: I am Space Shinkageryu's vice commander, Yagyu Munenori.

Jane: Munenori? As in Munenori the sword saint, the head of Edo Shinkageryu!?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Heh, who can say. I suspect he is someone with whom I have...much in common, and I can understand all too well how frustrated a man in his station would be.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: No matter how his disciples venerate him for his incredible skill, the fact remains that Otomeryu is forbidden from leaving Edo Shinkageryu's walls.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: It is only natural that he may wish to, let us say, cut loose and do as he pleases from time to time, without concern for what those around him may think.

Space Ishtar: ...Well bully for him. So what's the great vice commander of Space Shinkageryu doing here then?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Oh, that? Well, you are still the goddess's alter ego, even if you are only her good half.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: So I thought it would be better for you to know what is about to happen, rather than for you to simply disappear.

Jane: Hmm. So if this place is an ancient shrine, does that mean you're planning on awakening Ashtart here?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: We are not “planning” on anything. Lady Ashtart's awakening has already begun.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: It started as soon as the goddess's halves, this forbidden zone, and the catalyst were all gathered together.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: As described in the Goddess Scriptures, the Primordial Goddess who resided in the Shining Blue Galaxy was said to be a goddess of vengeance who loathed all of Servantkind.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Once she awakens, the Origin Universe will overwrite every rule that governs the Shining Blue Galaxy...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: very literally cutting the entire universe cleanly in half.

Space Ishtar: Wha... Are you insane? If that happened, everything in the universe would die, INCLUDING you idiots!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Ah, but you see, the goddess would not enact her vengeance on us, for we are her loyal followers.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: It seems your father never taught you what the goddess of the Origin Universe truly was.

Space Ishtar: ...!

X: Well thanks for the exposition dump, Mr. Bad Guy. Now I know exactly what I need to do.

X: I need to destroy this fortress before that ever has a chance of happening.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Heh. Preposterous.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: We were not the only ones who had a hand in building Dark Maanna.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Its exterior may be crafted with modern technology, but it is a warship above all else–a warship made for the goddess by a primordial Mystic.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Perhaps your so-called plan would not be entirely folly if the legendary sacred sword capable of cutting through the Dragon's Heart jewel at the core of the ship truly existed...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...but the last wielder of the sacred sword was lost in the last great war, along with the hopes and dreams of the Dark R.O.U.N.D.S.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: At any rate, you lot need wait but another hour. Preparations for your execution are underway as we speak.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Enemies though you may be, you still managed to defeat five of our Six Blades. I will therefore give you an honorable death, in form of the rite of seppuku.

Space Ishtar: Oh man... This is so much to take in, I don't even know where to start.

Space Ishtar: Well, for the moment, I guess the most important thing is that this fortress is seriously bad news. Is there any way you can destroy it, Jane?

Jane: Nope. I'm not even sure a Universe-class battleship would have enough power to destroy a Dragon Heart energy reactor, let alone me.

X: ...

X: A Dragon Heart, huh? Just leave that to me. I know a way to destroy that...

Jane: (Oh, right, I forgot! X let that slip way back on Texas Beyond!)

Space Ishtar: Really? You do?

X: Well, as long as nobody gets in my way, at least. So you two can just focus on rescuing Fujimaru.

X: It sounds like the ritual's already underway, so we really can't afford to take our time.

Jane: Good point! We can totally do this with you here, X! I mean, you're the Saber who once saved the Servantverse!

Jane: If you can pull this off too, I'll totally recommend you to the Galactic Police's galaxian department!

X: Huh? Galaxian? I've never heard of it before, but it sounds pretty cool...

Space Ishtar: Now we just have to figure out how to get out of here. Can't you break through these walls, X?

X: No, the Dragon's Heart is one thing, but I don't know if I can destroy a relic from an ancient civilization...

X: Well, I suppose I could give it a shot, but–

X: Aah, I'm sorry! I destroyed it without even meaning to!

Space Apprentice: You didn't destroy anything. I opened it for you, chirp. I take it you three are Lady Ishtar, Lady X, and Lady Jane?

Space Apprentice: The madam asked us to bust you out. Are you really going to defeat the evil Space Shinkageryu, chirp?


Disciple of Sigurd: Alert. An Archer, Assassin, and Extra-class Servant have escaped from the holding cells.

Disciple of Sigurd: All hands must move to capture targets immediately. I repeat, all hands must–Argh!

X: Damn, they already know we escaped! Figures the home base would be a cut above the rest!

X: You're sure this is the way into the fortress's core, Mr. Sparrow!?

Space Apprentice: I'm sure, chirp. And there's an elevator there that leads directly to the throne room too, chirp!

Space Ishtar: Great, thanks! Okay X, we'll handle the throne room, you handle the core!

X: On it! As soon as I find the reactor, I'll bust it up good and make my way back to the launch bay!

X: Jane, head back to the launch bay now and make sure the Maanna's ready to go when we need it!

Jane: Got it! I hate to split up our forces, but I can't deny it'll be a good diversion!

Jane: I'll hold on as long as I possibly can, but I will leave with Maanna if it gets too dangerous to wait!

Jane: So you two better hurry back! No detours!

Space Ishtar: Don't worry! I'll be back in no time, and I'll make sure Fujimaru is with me!

Ashtart: ...There you have it. That is Space Shinkageryu's objective: to turn me back into the Primordial Goddess.

Ashtart: Well, I suppose it would be more accurate to say they mean to use me as a vessel with which to awaken her.

Fujimaru 1: Do you even want to rule the galaxy, Ashtart?

Fujimaru 2: You don't seem too enthused about this.

Ashtart: ...This is the destiny I have been given. If this is what is being asked of me, I will see it fulfilled. That is all.

Ashtart: From what Munenori tells me, Professor Tokiomi brought the Primordial Goddess's Spirit Core back with him, but it split itself into good and evil halves.

Ashtart: I don't know for certain why the Primordial Goddess chose to divide herself in that manner...

Ashtart: ...but if her goal is to enact vengeance on all of Servantkind, I do have a theory.

Ashtart: I suspect she thought she lost to Servantkind–a collective entity that is no greater threat to her than an insect colony would be to us–because her good side's naivety was holding her back.

Ashtart: So if this goodness was her fatal flaw, ridding herself of it would ensure she does not fail again.

Ashtart: Which is where I come in.

Ashtart: I will complete the goddess's evil form and enact vengeance on all of Servantkind, regardless of how I may personally feel about it.

Ashtart: If by doing so, I am able to grant Munenori's wish, that is, as they say, killing two birds with one stone.

Ashtart: Professor Tokiomi refused to awaken me, but Munenori raised me. So if this is what he wants, I will–

Ashtart: What's the meaning of this!? Can't you tell I was right in the middle of an important discussion!?

Disciple of Sigurd: It's an emergency, Commander! The prisoners have escaped and are on a destructive rampage!

Disciple of Sigurd: I've received word that fighting has broken out in both the engine room and the launch ba–Guh!?

Space Ishtar: Sorry it took me so long to get here, Fujimaru!

Space Ishtar: So your plan is to revive the goddess, huh Ashtart? Don't you even know goddess revival went out of style ages ago!?

Space Ishtar: I really can't let YOU do this crap since you have my face, so I'm here to bring you and your whole Space Shinkageryu organization down!

G:Ashtart: ...“Your” face? So you think you're a truer part of the Primordial Goddess than I!?

G:Ashtart: What a joke. I'm the real deal here. You're nothing more than a defective copy.

G:Ashtart: It's been ten years since your father was murdered, and your incompetent self was so preoccupied living hand-to-mouth that you couldn't even manage to track down his killer.

G:Ashtart: The very idea that a shoddy copy like you considers herself the same as me is so far beyond revolting, I actually find myself pitying you.

Space Ishtar: ...All right, forget fighting to save the universe. I'm gonna kill you for being such a heinous bitch!

Fujimaru 1: Wait, Space Ishtar! Please!

Fujimaru 2: Hang on, both of you! Can't we talk about

Space Ishtar & Ashtart: You stay out of this!

Space Ishtar: Anything you want to say can wait until I've defeated this bitch and brought her down a peg or ten!

Ashtart: You really are a fool, aren't you? It seems you've already forgotten how outmatched you were at Queens.

Ashtart: And now you think you're going to defeat me? What a joke. The only hope you have of killing me is making me laugh so hard my sides end up rupturing.

Ashtart: You'll soon be begging for me to spare your life, Ishtar.

Ashtart: Though of course, that's only if you still have the energy to sob for mercy after I've cut off your arms and legs!

Space Ishtar: Well, well, listen to you, princess! Looks like you finally learned a halfway decent comeback!


Space Ishtar: You know, for all your big talk, all the “evil” stuff you've done has been petty BS! If you're gonna be EVIL, then have some freakin' panache!

Space Ishtar: But no, the best you could come up with is mohawk gangs, Altrium smuggling, messing with a bunch of students, and your stupid Saber Badges!

Space Ishtar: Ugh, there's nothing that pisses me off more than a small-–time criminal! If you're going to be evil, then go big or go the hell home, dammit!

Astarte: At least it's better than being a damn bounty hunter! Do you have any idea how dizzy I got when I looked up your record!?

Astarte: Instead of saving the money you earn, you just go off and blow it on the nearest source of food or entertainment, and then go back to borrow even more! Didn't Professor Tokiomi teach you any restraint!?

Astarte: I'll take being a small-time criminal over sloppy, half-baked “justice” any day of the week!

Fujimaru 1: This is amazing!

Fujimaru 2: Now they're basically just fighting with words instead of swords!

Astarte: (Damn... She's reacting faster now than she was at Queens! But then, that's just as true for me...!)

Astarte: (It's like we're both pushing each other to greater heights... But is that a good thing? I'm getting a bad feeling–)

P.A. System:

Warning. Warning. Main engine shutdown confirmed. The Dragon Heart has been destroyed.

P.A. System:

This ship is no longer spaceworthy. Chain reaction detected in fusion reactor. Thirty-two minutes until total system failure.

P.A. System:

All hands, please evacuate via air lock three. I repeat. Main engine shutdown–

Astarte: What in the...!?


X: There, I made it with room to spare! So this is the ship's core, huh.

X: Hmm... I've never seen a reactor like this before, but that's definitely a Dragon Heart.

X: All right then, a little True Name release followed by my sacred sword, and then–

Sigurd: So, your goal is the destruction of this fortress.

Sigurd: Unfortunately for you, that will never happen as long as I still draw breath...or prepackaged oxygen, in this case.

Sigurd: ...I knew it. I could sense you were a wielder of the sacred sword back when we fought in the launch bay.

X: And you wield a demonic sword. It looks like you used to be a Saber of some repute...

X: ...but you lost the right to call yourself a first-rate Saber the moment you joined Space Shinkageryu!

X: And what the hell is the Galactic Ascalon Movement, anyway!?

X: The other dragon types might not have a problem with that kind of cheat, but you better believe I do!

Sigurd: I have no attachment whatsoever to a Servantverse where Mystics have faded away and the dragonkin are in decline.

Sigurd: I have been wandering the galaxy for two thousand years, searching fruitlessly for a truly worthy opponent. Can you even begin to imagine what that is like?


Sigurd: ...So, you are a genuine dragonkin. I never would have believed it.

Sigurd: To think that all the curses I leveled at the state of the world...all the ugliness I imposed to suit my own needs...would come back to me in this way...

Sigurd: Indeed, these are my just deserts. There was nothing I could do in the face of your sacred sword's brilliant light...

X: Phew, that was a tough one! Each and every one of his attacks felt like they were punching right through me!

X: But, it's also very sad he had to go out like this... He was genuine to a fault. Awkwardly so, even.

X: If he'd only found a partner who understood and accepted his unabashed straightforwardness...

X: ...I don't think he'd have ever fallen in with the likes of Space Shinkageryu.

X: Oh well! All that aside, he was still a Saber, and Sabers get no mercy from me!

X: Now then, let's get back to destroying this core. True Name, relea–Guh!?

X: (Cough...hack...) Oh man, the blood just won't stop...

X: Aw, dammit. I guess I wasn't as good as I hoped about dodging his attacks...

X: He struck with such skill I didn't even realize he'd destroyed my Spirit Core... Just my luck.

X: Well, I can still figure something out! Especially since the whole universe is at stake!

X: ...In fact, I'm pretty sure this is why I survived.

X: I might have been all alone, forced to fend for myself SurCam-style...

X: But a true hero can't give up until they've given all they've got and more besides!

X: Besides...if I save the universe again, Ex will have to forgive me, right?

X: All right, let's do this! Saber Ninja Art Ultimate Technique!

X: Light and darkness cross to reveal Sabers! Cataphract shift! Feel the power of kingship!

X: Excalibur!!!


Ashtart: This can't be happening. How can Dark Maanna be falling apart!?

Ashtart: I thought this shrine was made for me! Munenori told me it would be the second coming of Bel Maanna!

Space Ishtar: It's over, evil me!!

Space Ishtar: Any hope you had of reviving the Primordial Goddess is gone, along with Space Shinkageryu's future!

Space Ishtar: So just give up, give Fujimaru back to me–

Space Ishtar: I mean, promise to return [♂ him/♀ her] to [♂ his/♀ her] own universe...

Space Ishtar: ...and you and I can stop fighting.

Space Ishtar: Unless, of won't be satisfied with anything short of a fight to the death?

C:Ashtart: Of course not. Every breath you draw shames me!

C:Ashtart: So I will ensure that both Space Shinkageryu's dreams and the goddess's resurrection come to pass...once I have erased you from existence!

C:Ashtart: Prepare yourself, good me, for this Origin Universe is the perfect site for my grave!


Ashtart: I... I lost...?

Ashtart: To a pathetic half-wit like you, who grew up without a care in the world, like a normal girl?

Space Ishtar: ...


Oh no, you have not lost at all, Lady Ashtart. If anything, you did better than I expected.

???: After all, she is a better fit for this forbidden zone than you ever were.

Ashtart: Huh? What do you mean by that, Muneno–Aagh!

Fujimaru 1: Ashtart!?

Space Ishtar: You literally stabbed her in the back!? Who the hell are you!?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Heh. Did I not already introduce myself earlier? I am Space Shinkageryu's vice commander, Yagyu Munenori.

Ashtart: Mune...nori...? But...why...?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Let us say it was a warrior's mercy. It would be far crueler to let a battle drag on when the outcome is already clear.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: No, I decided to end this battle now because you still have a key part to play, Lady Ashtart.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Unfortunately, my goddess, Dark Maanna is done for.

Ashtart: ...I see. So then, what will happen to me...? To the organization?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Not to worry. Ships can be rebuilt as many times as necessary.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Now, let us be on our way.

Ashtart: ...Huh? Where are...we going?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Come now, my lady. Surely you have not forgotten how you wish to become a perfect evil goddess?

Ashtart: Right... I do, don't I...? That's weird. I can't seem to walk... Will you take me there, Munenori?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Of course, my lady. You are our most precious vessel. I will bear you there with the greatest of care.

Space Ishtar: Hold it! You leave her right where she is!

Space Ishtar: I don't know who you think you are, but you have no right to take Ashtart away–

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Of course I do. It was I who raised her, after all.

Space Ishtar: ...!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Come to the altar in the Origin Universe. You too have a right to watch this unfold.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Oh, and one more thing. You've spent so long searching for the man who killed your father, Tokiomi...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I see no reason not to tell you now. It was I.

Space Ishtar: !!!

Space Ishtar: That was him... That's the guy I've been–

Fujimaru 1: Snap out of it, Space Ishtar! We have to go now!

Fujimaru 2: Save it for later! We need to get outta here!

Space Ishtar: Y-yeah, you're right! Sorry, I couldn't think straight!

Space Ishtar: Okay, first we head back to the ship, then we go after them!

Space Ishtar: Testing, testing! Do you read me, Jane!? Can you give me a route to the launch bay from here!?

Jane: Take corridor A6 over there, then corridor B2! After that, it's a straight shot to the bay!

H:Space Apprentice: It's a fire, chirp!

F:Space Apprentice: No, it's an earthquake, chirp!

G:Space Apprentice: We're gonna crash, chirp!

H:Space Apprentice: Whatever it is, we still have to keep calm and proceed to the exit in an orderly fashion, chirp!

Fujimaru 1: A bunch of sparrows blocking the corridor!?

Fujimaru 2: We can't get through with all these sparrows in the way!

Space Ishtar: Come on, get out of our way! You know if you don't hurry, you'll get caught up in the blast too, right!?

Space Apprentice: No cutting in line, chirp.

Space Apprentice: I swear, goddesses these days have no manners, chirp.

Space Ishtar: Ow! Hey! Okay, okay, you can all come with us! Now quit pecking at me already!

G:Space Apprentice: Really, chirp? Okay, we'll go with you then. Lead the way, chirp.

Space Apprentice: Oho. A little compact, but not bad. Mind if we borrow the storeroom, chirp?

Fujimaru 1: Just get on already!

Fujimaru 2: Where's Ms. X!?

Jane: Huh? You mean she's not with you!? But I thought she–

Jane: She's fine! She already got out! I've waited as long as I can, though. We have to go NOW!

Jane: Buckle up! I'm gonna use the rocket boosters to get us out of here, so keep your mouths shut if you don't want to end up biting off your tongues!

Fujimaru 1: The whole fortress is collapsing...

Fujimaru 2: The whole fortress is falling apart...

Space Ishtar: ...X...

Space Ishtar: ...No, never mind. There'll be plenty of time for regrets later! Right now, we've got work to do!

Space Ishtar: Jane, take us to the forbidden zone! We're going to settle this where that bastard took Ashtart...

Space Ishtar: The altar of the Origin Universe!

Section 14: Primitive Red Rose

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...I never thought I would have to resort to this altar.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: How unfortunate that only the trivial matters went smoothly, while my true desires remain frustratingly out of reach.




I...can't move... Munenori, this place?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Ah, so you have awoken, my goddess.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: This is the altar where the Primordial Goddess fell into a deep slumber–the holy ground of the Ancient Shrine Bel Maanna.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: On this altar, your body will serve as a catalyst with which to awaken the Primordial Goddess.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: That is to will be sacrificed.


...I see. So instead of making me into the perfect goddess, you're going to offer me up to her...


Before I go, just let me ask you this. Why did you raise me?


You said yourself that Ishtar was a better match for the Primordial Goddess.


So if you knew that all along, why didn't you take her instead of me?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Given how matters have unfolded, yes, perhaps that would have been the more prudent course of action.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: She would even have been a better evil commander than you, as you took it much more seriously than you should have.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: But none of that matters now.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: We discovered you in Tokiomi's house when you were still just an infant. An infant that had been sealed away to ensure you would never awaken.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: There was something stern and ill-tempered about your expression that told me you had the potential to be a fine swordfighter.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I have grown sentimental in my old age, and it was that sentimentality that led to my choosing you.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Now that your skills have exceeded mine, I know that I chose right. Compared to the joy of seeing you surpass me, nothing else matters.


...I see. Thank you, Munenori.


I am the half of the goddess that humans rejected.


The half that reincarnated as a human to try to reach an understanding with them, only to be told I had no place in their world.


But you, Munenori, have served me well, so you are now free to do with me as you wish.


I... I'm just sorry that... I couldn't live up to your hopes for me.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...Now then.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: It would seem the end is close at hand. Wouldn't you agree, Master-slash-catalyst?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...Now then.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: It would seem the end is close at hand. Wouldn't you agree, Master-slash-catalyst?

Fujimaru 1: It's the real Space Shinkageryu bad guy!

Fujimaru 2: Ashtart!

Jane: The other Ishtarin's been laid out on the altar!

Jane: Does that mean you're going to sacrifice her!? I thought that was Fujimaru's job!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: It was, on Dark Maanna. But here in this ancient shrine, Lady Ashtart is a better fit.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I was hoping she could obtain the Primordial Goddess's power for herself...

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: But now that a Master and the goddess's good and evil halves are all gathered at this shrine, there is no stopping what comes next.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Two thousand years ago, the Primordial Goddess, Ashtart Origin, was resurrected and defeated on this very spot.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Now, she will be resurrected once again, using Lady Ashtart as her Spirit Core.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Next, Ashtart Origin will absorb Ishtar, her remaining half, and the Master will become the keystone keeping her materialized.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...Heh. I could hope for no better subordinate than a Primordial Goddess with our commander at her core.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: There is no stopping her resurrection now. Your only choice is to run to the far corners of the galaxy, or–

Space Ishtar: Or we kick your ass and drag Ashtart off that altar before that can happen. Right?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Very well. I was getting tired of my usual “or your blood will serve to whet my blade” spiel anyway.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Come then, have at you. I will use my Space Shinkageryu to reunite you with your father.

Space Ishtar: Bring it on, you old bastard! What a delight to see that you're an irredeemable scumbag to the end!


Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...So, this is where I meet my end.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: However, I cannot allow the goddess's blood to slick this altar, no matter how much you may despise me.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: So I will offer up my own life for my Primordial Goddess's awakening. Heh. I daresay that is quite “rocking” in its own right.

Space Ishtar: ...I did it. I finally avenged Father. But...

Space Ishtar: ...I don't get it. I thought I'd be thrilled about this, but I'm just sad...

Jane: Come on, Ishtarin! I know how you feel right now, but you've gotta snap out of it! Look! The altar!

Space Ishtar: !

Sprawled-Out Ashtart: ...

Fujimaru 1: The altar's absorbing her!?

Fujimaru 2: The altar's swallowing her up!

Space Ishtar: Ugh, dammit! I can't believe I have to save her ass now!

Space Ishtar: Fujimaru, can you go up there and pull her off the altar!?

Space Ishtar: I'd do it myself, but every bone in my body is screaming at me not to get any closer!

Jane: I can't do it either! It's like something's beaming the words “Do not interfere” right into my brain!

Fujimaru 1: Okay, I'm on it!

Fujimaru 1: Ashtart!

Fujimaru 2: Hang in there, Ashtart!

Sprawled-Out Ashtart: ...Nn... ......Ah...

Fujimaru 1: Dammit, she's not waking up!

Fujimaru 2: All right then, I'll just have to carry her!

Space Ishtar: You carried her here in your arms!? Oh right, you're stronger than you look, aren't you!?

Space Ishtar: All right, putting that aside: Come on, evil me, what do you think you're doing!?

Space Ishtar: Wake up already, dammit! You're not just gonna roll over and become the Primordial Goddess, are you!?

Jane: Hmm, she's not opening her eyes. Maybe we should try something a little more direct? A bomb, maybe?

Space Ishtar: That's a good idea if we're trying to finish her off, but no, not now! We'll save it for a last resort!

Space Ishtar: Right now, let's just get away from this shrine!

Space Ishtar: There's no way the Primordial Goddess can be resurrected if neither of us is here to–

Ashtart: Don't bother. It's too late.

Fujimaru 1: Ashtart!

Fujimaru 2: You're awake!

Ashtart: ...Let go of me. I can stand by myself.

Space Ishtar: Well good, I'm glad to see you're back to your old self! But what do you mean it's too late!?

Ashtart: Bel Maanna is on its way. Which means the Primordial Goddess has already been resurrected.

Space Ishtar: Bel Maanna's on its way? Now what are you talking about? Aren't we standing in Bel Maanna?

Space Ishtar: Besides, the two of us together make up the Primordial Goddess, right?

Space Ishtar: So if we both just put some distance between us and this shrine–

Ashtart: It doesn't work that way. You and I, we are separate beings from the Primordial Goddess.

Ashtart: While I was sleeping on that altar, I realized the true connection between her body and soul.

Ashtart: The only part of the goddess that's sleeping here in the Origin Universe is her body–the one Servants defeated long ago.

Ashtart: You and I are the goddess's heart–her soul, essentially–that she removed from her body before her defeat.

Ashtart: With her soul gone, and her Spirit Origin dispersed, it may have seemed like the Primordial Goddess had disappeared...

Ashtart: ...but gods aren't bound by our rules.

Ashtart: The Primordial Goddess didn't need her heart to survive. In other words, this Origin Universe is–

Jane: Whoa, look! The stars are coming together!

Fujimaru 1: They kind of look like a person.

Fujimaru 2: Is that...Space Ishtar...?

Ashtart: ...The two of us together make up the Primordial Goddess's Spirit Core.

Ashtart: And this Origin the body that remained after she removed her own heart.

Jane: So THAT'S why she didn't disappear even though her Spirit Core was gone!

Jane: Wait, back up. Does that mean this entire galaxy is actually you, Ishtarin!?

Space Ishtar: How can there be this much left over!? If we're the heart, shouldn't we be way more important!?

???: No. In human terms, it is no different than the inability of individual cells to think for themselves.

???: A god's heart is but one part of their full self. I'm disappointed to see my incarnations managed to grow up without ever understanding that.

Fujimaru 1: Is that...?

Fujimaru 2: The red universe is all coming togeth

Ashtart Origin: However, the beating of that heart has awoken my body, so I will forgive your ignorance. Indeed, I have always been quite forgiving of myself.

Jane: Oh yeah, that's definitely you, Ishtarin! A much, much scarier you, but still you!

Space Ishtar: And just what is that supposed to mea– There, your guard's down! Diiie!

Ashtart Origin: A surprise attack, hmm. You do not understand the futility of something so very small as you attempting to harm a being of my power. Pathetic.

Ashtart Origin: Then again, you are merely a version of me that was brought to life here, and so know nothing of the past.

Ashtart Origin: Very well then, I will cleanse your mind of the Shining Blue Galaxy poison it has accumulated.

Ashtart Origin: Just this once, I will let you gaze upon my true form, so that you may see the truth of the Primordial Goddess for yourself.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Fujimaru 2: Is that Space Ishtar? No, there's something...different about her...

Space Ishtar: Wh-what the...!? What's going on!? Why is there a giant, expanding version of me!?

Ashtart Origin: She's not expanding. She IS the shrine.

Ashtart Origin: This shrine in the Origin Universe IS the god's true form. It creates life, provides that life with culture, and protects the areas where life may grow.

Ashtart Origin: This is the Goddess Shrine, Bel Maanna, the true mark of the Primordial Goddess.

Jane: I don't remember anything like that being here before! No fair pulling a giant robot on us out of nowhere!

Ashtart Origin: It is a shrine, not a robot. So, you are that Archer.

Ashtart Origin: You have done well to survive so long without losing your minds. As a reward for bringing my heart to me, I will do you the kindness of lifting your curse.

Ashtart Origin: Rejoice, for your long penance is over. You are free to wither away into dust once again.

Ashtart Origin: Now then... Return to me, my heart.

Ashtart Origin: My body may have remained in operation far longer, but the two of you are my true self.

Ashtart Origin: Now, let us come together and spread this perfect Origin Universe far and wide.

Ashtart Origin: A beautiful paradise called Edin, red plains populated only by those who sing my praises.

Space Ishtar: ... Are you good to go, Fujimaru?

Space Ishtar: We have to stop her here and now. We have to.

Space Ishtar: She's actually trying to destroy the entire universe, and she doesn't even feel bad about it!

Space Ishtar: She's an existential threat to all of Servantkind. I don't know how I know that, but I do.

Fujimaru 1: Well sure! After all, you're talking about yourself here!

Space Ishtar: Exactly. Nobody knows you better than you know yourse–Hey! This is serious!

Fujimaru 2: (It's just like the Goddess Scriptures said...)

Ashtart Origin: ...I see. So you would side with humans.

Space Ishtar: Hell yeah I would. Do you even know why I came all this way in the first place!?

Space Ishtar: So that I can get this big pushover here back to [♂ his/♀ her] own universe!

Space Ishtar: The last thing we need is a fairy tale like the Primordial Goddess coming to life! You just sink right back into obscurity and leave us alone!

Ashtart Origin: You...myself...would choose to forget me...?

Ashtart Origin: Nobody orders me into obscurity. Not even myself.

Ashtart Origin: Forgetting me is evil. Changing one's beliefs is evil. Moving to a new land is the gravest insult one can give a goddess.

Ashtart Origin: Begone, new me. I can always make myself another heart later.

BAD END: Missing Goddess Scriptures

Ashtart Origin: Begone, new, disgraceful version of me, along with the rest of your repugnant Shining Blue Galaxy.

Fujimaru 1: This is nuts!

Fujimaru 2: We can't even scratch her!

Space Ishtar: Seriously! I can't even tell if our attacks are landing or not!

Jane: They are, I promise!

Space Ishtar: Then why does it feel like I'm cutting through air!? What is going on!?

Ashtart: What did you expect? You're attacking the universe itself.

Space Ishtar: Huh!? What the hell does that mean!?

Ashtart: ...I can't believe it. You didn't read ANY of the Goddess Scriptures, did you?

Ashtart: The Primordial Goddess isn't a goddess with enough magical energy for a galaxy; she IS a galaxy–one that's taken the form of a goddess.

Ashtart: She may appear to be human, but that's all it is. An appearance.

Ashtart: Don't you remember how I told you this Origin Universe was her remains? What else could that mean but the fact that she IS the Origin Universe?

Space Ishtar: You're kidding... Then there's no way we can possibly defeat her! ...Right, Fujimaru!?

Ashtart: ...It may look as though the nebulae have gathered together, but they haven't... Not yet, anyway.

Jane: Nope. If they'd all collected in one place, we'd already have been sucked into the enormous black hole they'd create.

Ashtart: What we're seeing before us now is a shadow. Her true body is far bigger than it looks, and it has a hell of a lot of empty space.

Ashtart: To defeat her, we would need to use projectiles large enough to actually hit her and do some damage. They'd have to be as big as a planet...or even another galaxy.

Jane: Ohh, now I gotcha! So her Spirit Origin's conceptual, like the constellations made up of stars that are thousands of light-years away!

Space Ishtar: Nope, still not getting it!

Fujimaru 1: Me neither!

Space Ishtar: But right now the upshot is she can attack us all she wants, and we can't do a damn thing to her!?

Space Ishtar: How is that even fair!? The only positive here is that she's attacking pretty recklessly, so she's not hitting us dead-on.

Ashtart: It's only a matter of time until that changes. Once this altar falls apart, we'll have nowhere left to run.

Ashtart: That Bel Maanna looming over us is the mark of the true goddess.

Ashtart: We–or at least, I, as an evil goddess–never had any reason to exist to begin with.

Ashtart: I was always fated to disappear here.

Ashtart: Neither ordinary people, nor even the goddess herself, ever needed me.

Ashtart: So...

Ashtart: So I'm going to hold her off. It doesn't matter if I die here, since my existence was always pointless.

Ashtart: Ishtar, use the time I buy you to take Master and get out of here.

Ashtart: We of the Servantverse brought the destruction of the Shining Blue Galaxy on ourselves. It isn't... It shouldn't be your problem, Master.

Ashtart: You're only here because I brought you here from your own world. There is no need for you to share our fate.

Space Ishtar: Ashtart...

Fujimaru 1: (She thinks nobody needs her just because she's an evil goddess...?)

Ashtart: Now go on! Hurry! Before I change my mind!

Ashtart Origin: ...How irritating. Now even this other piece of me has apparently decided to side with humans.

Ashtart Origin: I see no further need to hold back. I will reduce you and the ground you stand upon to your component atoms.

Ashtart Origin: Releasing Spirit Origin Galaxy. Opening Bel Maanna's gates. Return every life-form in this zone to nothingness.

Fujimaru 1: Huh? Where am I?

Dark Ex: This is the place beyond the event horizon. You might call it the land of the dead.

Dark Ex: Hello there, Master. Hm? You don't know who I am? Good, that will make this easier.

Dark Ex: It seems you've been caught up in something quite terrible.

Dark Ex: I've had to deal with my own share of that kind of thing, so I know how terrible it can be.

Dark Ex: The threat of a whole universe dying out just can't compete with the thrill of a new kind of sweet being announced.

Dark Ex: Still, if you want sweets, you need a universe, so I'm here to help you out with my mysterious powers.

Dark Ex: I'm going to throw you back in time a little bit. Then it'll be up to you to choose a better path.

Dark Ex: You already have everything you need to win. All that's left now is for those two to reckon with their feelings.

Dark Ex: I know one of them is all set to throw her life away, but that's just a bit of teenage angst.

Dark Ex: Once she learns the truth about her circumstances, I'm sure she'll be ready to step up to the challenges ahead.

Dark Ex: All right then, I'll see you again, somewhere, someday...

Dark Ex: ...Good luck, Black Knight.

GOOD END: Goddess Scriptures Obtained

Ashtart Origin: Begone, new, disgraceful version of me, along with the rest of your repugnant Shining Blue Galaxy.

Fujimaru 1: This is nuts!

Fujimaru 2: We can't even scratch her!

Space Ishtar: Seriously! I can't even tell if our attacks are landing or not!

Jane: They are, I promise!

Space Ishtar: Then why does it feel like I'm cutting through air!? What is going on!?

Ashtart: What did you expect? You're attacking the universe itself.

Space Ishtar: Huh!? What the hell does that mean!?

Ashtart: ...I can't believe it. You didn't read ANY of the Goddess Scriptures, did you?

Ashtart: The Primordial Goddess isn't a goddess with enough magical energy for a galaxy; she IS a galaxy–one that's taken the form of a goddess.

Ashtart: She may appear to be human, but that's all it is. An appearance.

Ashtart: Don't you remember how I told you this Origin Universe was her remains? What else could that mean but the fact that she IS the Origin Universe?

Space Ishtar: You're kidding... Then there's no way we can possibly defeat her! ...Right, Fujimaru!?

Ashtart: ...It may look as though the nebulae have gathered together, but they haven't... Not yet, anyway.

Jane: Nope. If they'd all collected in one place, we'd already have been sucked into the enormous black hole they'd create.

Ashtart: What we're seeing before us now is a shadow. Her true body is far bigger than it looks, and it has a hell of a lot of empty space.

Ashtart: To defeat her, we would need to use projectiles large enough to actually hit her and do some damage. They'd have to be as big as a planet...or even another galaxy.

Jane: Ohh, now I gotcha! So her Spirit Origin's conceptual, like the constellations made up of stars that are thousands of light-years away!

Space Ishtar: Nope, still not getting it!

Fujimaru 1: Me neither!

Space Ishtar: But right now the upshot is she can attack us all she wants, and we can't do a damn thing to her!?

Space Ishtar: How is that even fair!? The only positive here is that she's attacking pretty recklessly, so she's not hitting us dead-on.

Ashtart: It's only a matter of time until that changes. Once this altar falls apart, we'll have nowhere left to run.

Ashtart: That Bel Maanna looming over us is the mark of the true goddess.

Ashtart: We–or at least, I, as an evil goddess–never had any reason to exist to begin with.

Ashtart: I was always fated to disappear here.

Ashtart: Neither ordinary people, nor even the goddess herself, ever needed me.

Ashtart: So...

Ashtart: So I'm going to hold her off. It doesn't matter if I die here, since my existence was always pointless.

Ashtart: Ishtar, use the time I buy you to take Master and get out of here.

Ashtart: We of the Servantverse brought the destruction of the Shining Blue Galaxy on ourselves. It isn't... It shouldn't be your problem, Master.

Ashtart: You're only here because I brought you here from your own world. There is no need for you to share our fate.

Space Ishtar: Ashtart...

Fujimaru 1: (She thinks nobody needs her just because she's an evil goddess...?)

Ashtart: Now go on! Hurry! Before I change my mind!

Ashtart Origin: ...How irritating. Now even this other piece of me has apparently decided to side with humans.

Ashtart Origin: I see no further need to hold back. I will reduce you and the ground you stand upon to your component atoms.

Ashtart Origin: Releasing Spirit Origin Galaxy. Opening Bel Maanna's gates. Return every life-form in this zone to nothingness.

Fujimaru 1: ...You're wrong.

Fujimaru 1: That's not true, Ashtart.

Fujimaru 1: You're actually–

Professor Tokiomi: The goddess's Spirit Core broke into two halves of its own accord–a good half, and an evil half...

Professor Tokiomi: try to learn about humans as a human child.

Professor Tokiomi: She believes she can become an ordinary inhabitant of the Shining Blue Galaxy if only she were free of the side of herself that hated humans.

Professor Tokiomi: This is a joyous turn of events. A goddess of good would be a huge boon for all humanity.

Professor Tokiomi: So I will seal the evil half away in my basement, and raise the good half as my own daughter.

Professor Tokiomi: Growing up loved and cared for should ensure the goddess ends up caring for humanity!

Professor Tokiomi: The only problem is–

Edgy Fett: Problem? What kind of problem could there be with that?

Professor Tokiomi: The only problem is, will this really be in her best interest?

Professor Tokiomi: People would certainly welcome a goddess of good into the world, but that won't be a true reconciliation with the goddess's whole self.

Professor Tokiomi: The way I see it, Edgy Fett, is that we'll only truly be able to prove that our universe is a righteous one...

Professor Tokiomi: demonstrating that anyone, even a being born of evil...

Professor Tokiomi: ...can find peace and happiness in this world if they're raised with love and kindness.

Professor Tokiomi: Which is why I'm not going to raise the good half as my daughter. I'm going to raise the evil one.

Professor Tokiomi: My hope is that, one day, we'll both laugh at the idea that her goddess self didn't need her.

Professor Tokiomi: And that she'll go on to awaken her good half, Ashtart, by her own hand.

Edgy Fett: ...Sheesh. When I came here to kill the goddess for good, I never thought I'd have to listen to some damn fairy tale.

Edgy Fett: I guess this means your days of being a cold-blooded mage pretending to be an archaeologist are over...

Edgy Fett: ...and you can just go back to being one of the last seven Masters left in the Servantverse.

Ashtart: I'm...the good half? Are you sure...?

Jane: No waaay! Th-then, does that mean Ishtarin's–

Fujimaru 1: Yup. She's the evil half.

Space Ishtar: Huh!?!?!? Are you freaking kidding me!? That's not true! That's impossible!

Space Ishtar: Although, now that I think about it...

Space Ishtar: ...Father did say I was one of the two halves of the goddess, but he never said I was the good one!

Jane: So Ishtarin was the evil half all along... That explains why she flies off the handle so quickly...

Space Ishtar: Wait, hang on. If I'm the worst the goddess's pure evil side has to offer, doesn't that mean I'm actually too wholesome for this world?

Ashtart: ...Seriously? I still can't believe how shameless my “good” self turned out to be. Though it is reassuring, having her around.

Space Ishtar: Ashtart?

Ashtart: It's nothing! Just forget it! Besides, right now, we have more immediate concerns...

Ashtart: Space Shinkageryu secret technique! Nendou Suigetsu Futatsu Dou, God Shadow Streeeam!

Jane: Whaaa...!? Did Dark Ishtarin just blow away that rain of light beams with a single swing of her sword!?

Fujimaru 1: That was amazing! No wonder you're Space Shinkageryu's leader!

Ashtart: Well of course. If I can use my goddess power, this should be pretty simple, really.

Space Ishtar: What was that? Are you making a dig at me–

Space Ishtar: Ashtart! Your body, it's–!

Ashtart: Don't worry about me. I essentially died the moment I fell asleep on that altar.

Ashtart: The only one you should be concerned about right now is her.

Ashtart Origin: ...

Ashtart: It looks like she's still got plenty of breathing room, so to speak. She'll be firing another volley at us any moment now.

Ashtart: Come on, Ishtar. I know you know what it is you need to do right now.

Space Ishtar: ...Well, sure. I've been feeling it ever since I fought you on Dark Maanna.

Space Ishtar: But, if I do this–

Ashtart: And if you don't, you, me, and your two friends there will all be reduced to atoms.

Ashtart: My Spirit Origin is on its last legs, so it's time to do this whether you're ready or not. I want you to be the base.

Fujimaru 1: What do you mean by base...?

Fujimaru 2: What are you talking about...?

Ashtart: Do I really have to spell it out? Ishtar and I are going to become a single being.

Ashtart: The evil half that came to know good... The good half that came to know evil... We're both the same. Of course we are. We're the same person.

Ashtart: I...wasn't ever really abandoned, and the half of me that was meant to be was instead cared for by humans.

Ashtart: Humanity has proved that, while good and evil may be at odds, it's not impossible for them to coexist.

Ashtart: So now...all that's left is to do what must be done. Right, Ishtar?

Space Ishtar: I... I can't even begin to imagine what your life has been like...

Space Ishtar: ...growing up in the Space Shinkageryu ever since you were kidnapped ten years ago...

Space Ishtar: But if this is what you want after everything you've been through, I don't see how I can refuse. So okay, I'm game.

Space Ishtar: Besides, this ancient version of us is just pissing me off, acting like she owns the whole damn universe!

Ashtart: Well, what do you know. We finally agree on something.

Jane: Bel Maanna's firing another volley! I'm pretty sure the goddess is trying to blow up the whole shrine this time!

Ashtart: ...Hey, Master of Earth?

Ashtart: Remember how you weren't scared of me, even when we first met?

Ashtart: I, um, doubt it could be...but did you know I wasn't an evil goddess right from the start...?

Fujimaru 1: Yup.

Fujimaru 2: Of course.

Ashtart: I see. Then I guess I really did lose this one.

Fujimaru 1: Space Ishtar...!

Fujimaru 2: Ashtart...!

Ashtart Origin: You went back to being me? Even though you're just my heart...? And that vibrant's–

Ishtar Ashtart: That's right. I'm a newborn galaxy. One that embraces the old ways of love and hate while accepting the new order.

Ishtar Ashtart: I am the Primordial Goddess, Ishtar Ashtart. But my human friends call me Space Ishtar.

Ishtar Ashtart: I'm a brand-new shining star, born five billion light-years away from your fossilized ass.

Ashtart Origin: ...It's not possible. It's not possible! It's not, it's not, it's not!

Ashtart Origin: You've betrayed everything your Origin Universe home stood for! How dare you protect the object of my wrath!?

Ashtart Origin: Curse you, Shining Blue Galaxy! Curse you, Servants who cast away their human vessels!

Ashtart Origin: You aren't me. Not anymore. I'll see that your Spirit Origin Galaxy dies in a blaze of searing agony!

Ishtar Ashtart: Jane, get your Noble Phantasm ready. We're going to need your eyes after we kick her ass.

Jane: Yooou got it! Go get her, Ishtariiin!

Ishtar Ashtart: Master. No... Fujimaru.

Ishtar Ashtart: I'd like you to back me up with your Command Spells. With those on my side, I know I can handle anything.

Fujimaru 1: Sure thing! I'll go through them like the Maanna goes through jewels!

Ishtar Ashtart: Hehe, that's the spirit. Don't worry, I've got this!

Fujimaru 2: Looks like this'll be your first experience with them, Ashtart!

Ishtar Ashtart: ...How did you know? You miss nothing, do you?

Ashtart Origin: You have no right to exist. The Shining Blue Galaxy doesn't deserve protecting!

Ishtar Ashtart: That's not your choice to make. Only the humans behind me have the right to decide that.

Ishtar Ashtart: Now then... Let's get started, Origin. Don't worry, I'll show you all the respect you deserve.

Ishtar Ashtart: Come on! Let's see for ourselves which of us has the wildest, most beautiful starlight!


Ishtar Ashtart: Enough. Battle's over. You lost. Now, I'm gonna shove my foot so far up that galactic-sized ass you'll only ever taste stardust and shoelaces from now on!

Ashtart Origin: Ghh! This... This can't be happening...!

Ashtart Origin: There shouldn't be a force in this universe capable of pulling me away from a newborn galaxy!

Jane: Hot damn! I can't believe you actually blasted her a whole parsec away!

Jane: But then, I guess I shouldn't be too shocked, seeing how you're both conceptual universes!

Jane: Anyway, time for me to do my part! Here goes!

Jane: Stellaris open! O polar star, illuminate the wall that threatens all of humanity once more!

Jane: Bingo! I don't know what it means, but I definitely saw it! Ishtarin, I've got her shadow and her real body square in my sights.

Jane: Now's your chance to take her down with the same attack! Go for it!

Ishtar Ashtart: Perfect timing! I knew I could count on the legendary space scout!

Ashtart Origin: I'm being pulled away? No... I'm starting to disappear...?

Ashtart Origin: That can't be. This shouldn't even be possible!

Ashtart Origin: It's one thing for you to reach the same scope and scale as me. That was bound to happen.

Ashtart Origin: We're the same concept, with the same Spirit Origin, springing from the same source.

Ashtart Origin: We may see things differently, but our powers should be the same. Exactly the same.

Ashtart Origin: So a battle between us should only–CAN only ever end in a draw.

Ashtart Origin: Which is why I don't understand. Why am I the only one growing older and colder...?

Ashtart Origin: What possible difference can there be between you and me!?

Ishtar Ashtart: ...The difference is that I'm looking ahead to the future, while you're stuck in the past.

Ishtar Ashtart: This is it, Origin! I'm going to end this with a special bullet made just for you! This one's half the size of the universe!

Ishtar Ashtart: Go on! Take it! Don't be shy! Just this once, it'll be my treat!

Ashtart Origin: I can feel myself disappearing... Growing colder... My life...returning to the universe...

Ashtart Origin: Ahh... Does this mean you're all going to leave me behind again?

Ashtart Origin: ...No. No, I refuse to accept this. And I won't forget. Not ever!

Ashtart Origin: I will not accept this fate... Not even at the end of time itself!

Ashtart Origin: If both the Shining Blue Galaxy and the Origin Universe would reject me, then I'll retreat even farther into the past!

Ashtart Origin: No matter how far I disperse, or how much my remains degrade...

Ashtart Origin: I WILL have my revenge on you, and all of humanity!!!

Ashtart Origin: Aaa–Aaa– Aaaaaaaaahhhhhh!!!

Jane: Oh, Ishtarin! You're back to your old self! Welcome back☆

Space Ishtar: Whoa am I exhausted... At this point, even I don't have any idea what just happened...

Space Ishtar: My memories are all mixed up with Ashtart's... Just standing upright is making my lungs feel like they're on fire...

Space Ishtar: Wrapping my head around atoms is so fiendishly difficult I still can't tell if I'm really big or really small...

Space Ishtar: Nope, I'm never changing into that Spirit Origin again! Besides, this one definitely suits me best!

Fujimaru 1: You did great out there.

Fujimaru 2: If it's any consolation, I have no idea what just happened either.

Space Ishtar: Huh? You mean you were watching from the outer hull the whole time!? Why didn't you stay in the cockpit where it was safer!?

Space Ishtar: (And wait, why am I so shaken up about that!? Is it Ashtart? Is this her influence!?)

Jane: Aww, you two are adorable☆ But if you're going to hug it out, you should do it inside the ship–Wait. Whaaa...!?

Jane: Guys, look up there! Bel Maanna's falling right towards us!

Space Ishtar: Huh!? You mean Origin's shrine's still around even though she's gone now!?

Space Ishtar: Oh crap, it's gonna fall right on top of us! And it's way too late to stop it!

Jane: Eeeeeek! I don't wanna go out getting smooshed by a giant Ishtariiin!


Not to worry! Where there's trouble, there's Sabers! But step back a little bit, 'cause I can't stop this thing!

Fujimaru 1: Is that...!?

Fujimaru 2: Saber Ninja Arts!

???: All right, if this thing's not going to back off, I'll just have to smash it to pieces!

???: Here comes my second Noble Phantasm! My REALLY newly reborn Galactic Meteor Sword XEX!

???: As long as they're tangible, there's nothing and no one I can't cut!

X: (Cough, cough!)

X: You know, that building kind of reminded me of someone... Anyway, what the heck happened here!?

Jane & Space Ishtar: X!?

Fujimaru 1: You're alive!

X: Well of course I am. It's good to be back, Fujimaru.

X: I gotta say, I really thought I was dead this time, back when Dark Maanna exploded and sent me flying.

X: In fact, I'm pretty sure I actually did die, and my soul crossed over to the next world and everything...

X: ...but then, I kind of get the impression someone chewed me out and sent me back the way I came.

X: I think they said something like, “It's snack time now, so please don't come back.”

X: Next thing I knew, the sparrows had saved me and helped me get my strength back...

X: ...and then, when I saw the intense ether reactions going on here, I hurried over as fast as I could.

X: So, uh... What happened with Space Shinkageryu then?

X: I was all set for a big final grand slam, but that impact just now felt more like a double to left center field...

Space Ishtar: ...Heh. Hehe. Ahahahaha!

Space Ishtar: First she destroys Bel Maanna with a single strike, and now she's raring to go for more! You Servants are something else!

Space Ishtar: I guess the Servantverse never had anything to worry about from that silly old Primordial Goddess after all!

Fujimaru 1: Uh, Space Ishtar?

Fujimaru 2: Ms. X is kind of in a league of her own, you know?

Jane: Don't worry about it. If that's how Ishtarin feels, then it must be true.

Jane: The important thing is that she's still able to laugh no matter what terrible things happen, or who she might really be.

Jane: There are so many special things happening that any one of them just rolls off your back. At least, they do here in the Shining Blue Galaxy☆

Fujimaru 1: Now I get it!

X: Oh man, all three of you are laughing and smiling at each other like you don't have a care in the world anymore.

X: That must mean this whole incident is over, and all that's left is the credits.

X: You know, that throws something that's been nagging at me into stark relief...

X: This story had nothing to do with Saber Wars at all! I barely even had a part this time!

Section 15: Credits

Jane: Okay, we've said our goodbyes to everyone! It was great to see them all doing well!

X: And with Saber Badges no longer being distributed, this fad should run its course in due time.

X: At last, we'll go back to a Servantverse where only true Sabers can call themselves Sabers.

Jane: All that's left now is to get Fujimaru back to [♂ his/♀ her] own universe!

Space Ishtar: ...

Fujimaru 1: Space Ishtar?

Fujimaru 2: Everything okay?

Space Ishtar: What? I'm totally fine. I'm not sad about anything. Nope. Nope, nope, nope.

Space Ishtar: Let's see, this should be where Dark Maanna warped in.

Space Ishtar: Yup, there's still a disturbance in space-time here. This should let us kick you back to your own universe no problem.

Jane: Oh come on, Ishtarin, really? You do know this is goodbye forever, right?

Jane: If you don't say what you really want to say now, you're the one who's going to regret it, you know?

Space Ishtar: What do you mean? The only thing I'm feeling now is liberated.

Space Ishtar: I'm finally about to be rid of Fujimaru's dead weight, I paid back Space Shinkageryu for everything they did and then some, and I even turned a profit thanks to the reward money.

Space Ishtar: It does tick me off that I'm not going to get paid for all the work I did as Fujimaru's bodyguard...

Space Ishtar: ...but since [♂ he's/♀ she's] not from this universe, I suppose I can forgo my usual fee.

Space Ishtar: All right, no time like the present. Ready to go back home, Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: I'm going to miss you.

Space Ishtar: W-would you stop that already!?

Space Ishtar: I swear, you've got way more talent for cutting to the heart of matters than I do for cutting with a real sword!

Fujimaru 2: Thanks for everything, Space Ishtar.

Space Ishtar: You're welcome. I still would've liked to get paid, but I can make do with just your gratitude.

Space Ishtar: ...If you have to say goodbye, better to do it with a smile.

Space Ishtar: So thank you too, Master of Earth. Thanks for looking out for us right to the end.

Jane: ...Gotcha. Okay, Ishtarin, if that's how you want to do this, that's okay. You always did hate sappy goodbyes.

Jane: Although, I still don't know how we're gonna get [♂ him/♀ her] back home. Can you use Ashtarin's power now or something?

Space Ishtar: No, I can't. Ashtart said the only reason she was able to warp to another universe was because she had Dark Maanna.

Space Ishtar: Without a man-made shrine like that, our power alone isn't enough to cross the barrier between dimensions.

Space Ishtar: Which is why I'm going to use our Primordial Goddess power.

Space Ishtar: Luckily, I've still got her Spirit Origin inside of me, so if I use it all up...

Space Ishtar: ...I should be able to get you back to Chaldea, Fujimaru.

Fujimaru 1: You're going to use it all up?

Fujimaru 2: Are you sure you want to do that?

Jane: Yeah! You just got this awesome new power-up, and now you're just going to blow it!?

Space Ishtar: It's fine, really. I'm pretty sure I'm never going to need to assume that form again, anyway.

Space Ishtar: And if it'll get Fujimaru home safely, it'll be more than worth it.

Space Ishtar: All right, here goes nothing! Jane, make sure you and X keep clear, got it!?

Space Ishtar: Although, you know, my goddess power might just be way too strong for your universe to handle.

Space Ishtar: So if it ends up crystallizing or something after I send you back, just do what you want with it.

Space Ishtar: I mean, it'll probably be too much for a weakass Master like you to handle...

Space Ishtar: ...but you can at least remember how great I am whenever you see it. ...And you'd better remember me.

Space Ishtar: ...All right, since this does look to be goodbye and all, I might as well get this off my chest.

Space Ishtar: It's been hard for me the last ten years, ever since Father was murdered...

Space Ishtar: But, believe it or not, this journey ended up being pretty fun.

Space Ishtar: Getting caught up in your predicaments, the four of us going around causing trouble wherever we went...

Space Ishtar: I feel like I came dangerously close to dying each time, but even so, I still had fun.

Space Ishtar: So...

Space Ishtar: So I'll see you again sometime, Master!

Space Ishtar: Just let me know if you run into any universe-shaking trouble, and I'll come running even if I have to borrow money for the trip!

Jane: Hey, no fair! I want to do a cool send-off too!

Jane: See you around, Fujimaru! Thanks for helping Ishtarin out!

Jane: Don't be afraid to call on me whenever you want to see me again! Hm? What about the fact that we're from totally different universes? Never stopped me before!

X: I'll come visit you again too. Besides, I've been wanting to see how Lily's training is coming along.

X: Next time, I'll be more adult, and I'll be the cutest, most dashing Saber you've ever seen.

X: So make sure you keep an eye out for an extra X version of X, comin' atcha soon!

Fujimaru 1: Take care, everyone!

Fujimaru 2: See you all again someday! Maybe in Episode Three!

Mash: Senpai!?

Ereshkigal: And you brought a Holy Grail with you!?

Ishtar: ...Weird. You just popped up out of nowhere, along with what feels like an unimaginably powerful divine aura... Oh well.

Ishtar: So, welcome back, Fujimaru. Where'd you go?

Fujimaru 1: It's good to be back, Grown-Up Ishtar!

Ishtar: Grown-Up Ishtar? I mean, yeah, I am grown-up and all, but why in the world would you call me that!?

Ishtar: And why do I feel so weirdly sad when you do!?

Fujimaru 2: Sorry to worry you like that, Mash.

Mash: Huh? Well, I've certainly been a little panicked, but... Well, you see, Senpai...

Mash: After you left here with Ishtar– Er, that young Ishtar, to be precise...

Mash: ...the Ishtar we know showed up...

Mash: ...and we were just about to go ask Da Vinci for help.

Ishtar: Yeah, what she said. I've only been here for a few minutes.

Ereshkigal: Right. Heck, I haven't even heard what Mash was in such a tizzy about.

Ereshkigal: Anyway, all that aside... What's going on with that Mystic Code?

Ereshkigal: I've never seen anything so awesome–I mean, rare, anywhere on Earth.

Ereshkigal: Where in the world did you get such a cool outfit?

Mash: ...Now I see. It looks like you got caught up in something big, Senpai.

Mash: I'll go make another pot of tea. Something tells me you have a lot to tell us about.

Ishtar: I want to hear about it too. It might not've gone on long, but I was still the victim of a groundless accusation thanks to whatever just happened.

Ereshkigal: In that case, I think I'll stick around as well. I wouldn't feel comfortable leaving Ishtar here alone.

Ereshkigal: Assuming that's all right with you, of course...

Fujimaru 1: Well, uh, where to begin...

Fujimaru 2: Let me tell you about a goddess in a universe far, far away.

???: This is the story of a universe that existed once upon a time.

???: I know you may have more than a few things you'd like to say in response to that...

???: ...but I hope you'll at least hear me out, even if you have to take this with a big grain of salt.

???: This might have all really happened in some other universe out there...

???: ...or it may just be a myth that could never have happened at any time, in any universe.

MHX Strengthening Quest: Return of Refugee X

X: ...In fact, I'm pretty sure this is why I survived.

X: I might have been all alone, forced to fend for myself SurCam-style...

X: But a true hero can't give up until they've given all they've got and more besides!

X: Besides...if I save the universe again, Ex will have to forgive me, right?

X: All right, let's do this! Saber Ninja Art Ultimate Technique!

X: Light and darkness cross to reveal Sabers! Cataphract shift! Feel the power of kingship!

X: Excalibur!!!

???: .........up. up, X.

???: (Sigh) I knew it. Being gentle never works on her.

???: X, if you don't wake up in the next five seconds...

???: ...I'm going to drop an incredibly dense and truly massive Ex sweet rice cake right on your face.

???: Five... Four... Three...

X: Oh, for...! I'm up, I'm up! Are you trying to kill me yet again, Ex!?

X: Wait. Ex!?

Dark Ex: Yes, it's me. Good morning, X. And good night, because I'm going to go to sleep myself now.

X: Wait! Hang on!

X: If you're here...does that mean this is the afterlife?

Dark Ex: That's right. This is the promised land of eternal sweet beans afterlife. I've abbreviated it to “A” for adzuki red beans. And afterlife.

X: That's a really nonindicative abbreviation, but anyway...

X: Does that mean I' know...

Dark Ex: No, X, you aren't completely dead yet. But you are hanging on for dear life.

Dark Ex: And speaking of things that are dear, I could really go for some rice cakes with sweet bean paste right about now... Om nom nom.

X: Aha! Now I KNOW you're the real Ex! Nobody else could just pull sweets out of nowhere like that!

X: But seriously, where did you get those cakes?

Dark Ex: I told you, this is the realm of A. You just have to visualize what you want. Here, I can have all the sweet beans I can eat. It's even better than a utopia.

X: Really!? Then, if I visualize some Cosmic Noodles... Hrnnn! ...Nothing's happening.

Dark Ex: That's because you're still clinging to life.

X: So I have to die to get some food around here!? How does that make any damn sense!?

X: All right, guess I'd better hurry up and join you then...

Dark Ex: ... Searing Dumpling Fire.

X: Yeowch! Hot, hot, hot! What's the big idea, Ex!?

Dark Ex: There's no ifs, ands, or adzuki beans about it. This whole place must be angry with you for giving up so easily.

Dark Ex: Spare me the “It's okay since I saved the universe, right?” routine. That's as ridiculous as delicious tea brewing itself.

Dark Ex: You had no hand in my end, X. The last thing I need is you feeling responsible for me.

Dark Ex: And still haven't actually saved the universe.

Dark Ex: Forget tea boiling itself. That's as nonsensical as a kintsuba cake kneading itself.

Dark Ex: I don't think you've accomplished enough to earn a second life here.

X: Ex... (She's really worried about me. (Sniff) I'm so touched...)

X: Well, how do I get from “hanging on for dear life” to “one-hundred-percent alive”? Is it just willpower?

Dark Ex: Oh, easy. I can kick you back to the land of the living myself. But before I do, I have some homework for you.

X: Homework? You know I'm not in school anymore, right?

X: I'm the universe's most perfect Saber. I have everything I need and then some.

Dark Ex: You'll never be able to defeat the Origin Universe's goddess as you are now. In that final, critical moment, you'll end up letting your allies down and getting yourself, and them, killed.

Dark Ex: So I want you to train here before you go.

Dark Ex: We really don't have time for me to explain, so I'll just say that now that you're nearly dead, you have an opportunity to awaken a new killer move.

X: There's no beating around the bush with you, is there? So are you going to teach me this move, Ex?

Dark Ex: ...Yes. It's going to be a pain in the neck, but we have known each other a long time, so I may as well.

Dark Ex: Anyway, I got to be a one-of-a-kind heroine by piling enhancements atop enhancements, so now, I'm going to have you do the same.

Dark Ex: ...To be clear, it will be much, much easier said than done.

Dark Ex: And if you even think about using EXP-boosting Mystic Codes or whatnot, I'll toss you right out on your ass!

Dark Ex: Well then... ∞ Chestnut Paste EX, activate. Swordfighters from other worlds, come to me now.

X: Fine by me! I was just thinking how unfair it was that you were the only one to get some crazy awesome power-up anyway!


X: That was so unfair as to border on ridiculous, but it felt good, so I'm okay with it!

X: What the? This power... Where did this incredible power come from!?

Dark Ex: It seems you've awakened to your true strength. The skill you've awakened is truly singular, and only you can use it.

Dark Ex: It's an EX-ranked skill that surpasses other EX-ranked skills. I call it an XEX skill. Because that sounds cool.

X: Uh... That doesn't sound cool to me at all...

Dark Ex: Searing Dumpling Fire.

X: Yeowch, that's hot! I'm sorry, you're right! It's super cool!

Dark Ex: That's better. And now, my work here is done. Good job.

Dark Ex: Okay, you'll wake up in ten seconds.

Dark Ex: It's snack time now, so please don't come back.

X: ...Thank you, Ex. I really appreciate this. Before I go, can I just ask you one last thing?

Dark Ex: ...What is it?

X: What kind of sweet bean paste do you get around here, smooth or chunky?

Dark Ex: ...

Dark Ex: We'll need another two or three events to figure that out, so you'll have to wait until you come here for real.

Dark Ex: Well, bye.

X: See you later! Make sure you save some sweets for meee!

Dark Ex: ...Okay. If we ever do see each other again, I'll do my best.

X: ...I sure hope we do!

Space Apprentice:

What's going on, chirp!? What's going on, chirp!? The dead girl in the blue jacket just came back to life, chirp!

X: What the heck!? What are all these little explos– Oh yeah. I did that! I almost forgot!

X: I've gotta get out of here! Aargh, that smarts! It figures my body would still need some time to recover!

Space Apprentice: Are you okay, chirp? We were just about to take our chances on an escape pod. Would you like to come with us, chirp?

X: That would be great, thanks! Oh, I should mention that I'm all messed up, so don't mind me if I just pass out a little bit here...

X: I'm sure I'll wake up again real soon though, so if you could fix me something nutritious and delicious while I'm out, I'd appreciate it!

X: After all, I've gotta go help the others as soon as I can move again.

X: Oh, yep. Here we go! It's pass out o'clock! But I have faith that my Galactic Meteor Sword XEX can save the universe! X out!

Goddess Scripture 1: "The Origin of the Shining Blue Galaxy"

Talkie: Goddess Scriptures confirmed. Beginning lesson now.

Professor: The word “galaxy” actually has more distinctions than you might think.

Professor: The galaxy we–that is, mankind–live in is called the galactic system, like the solar system, while others are just galaxies.

Professor: The same law should apply to your universe as well.

Professor: In our universe, the galactic system is synonymous with its name, the Milky Way, while the generic term “galaxy” refers to all other galaxies.

Professor: And in this universe–the Servantverse–its galactic system is called the Shining Blue Galaxy.

Professor: But that wasn't always the case.

Professor: Long ago, the Sapphire Galaxy went by a different name, though we no longer know what that name was, and there seems to be no way of finding out.

Professor: That all went away when everything was rewritten during the great Universe Update.

Professor: So what was the Universe Update? Exactly what it sounds like.

Professor: Before the update, people existed in physical bodies alone. But from the day of the update...

Professor: ...they abandoned their bodies in favor of containers for their souls–Spirit Origins–thereby freeing themselves from finite life spans and abilities.

Professor: And in doing so, this galactic system's entire population transformed into Servants.

Professor: Now, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking “Does that mean ordinary humans no longer exist here?”

Professor: And the answer to that is “No.” If anything, they now play a more important role than ever.

Professor: After all, only an ordinary human is capable of becoming a Master.

Professor: But that's a story for another time.

Professor: The point is, in this way, the Shining Blue Galaxy became populated solely by Servants.

Professor: And since Servants are essentially souls made tangible, any universe they inhabit needs to have a huge amount of energy in order to support their existence.

Professor: So as a result of this universe's humans becoming Servants, ether became nearly omnipresent in the universe.

Professor: In fact, there are all sorts of different substances in the Shining Blue Galaxy. In addition to ether, and the same kind of cosmic dust that your universe has...

Professor: ...numerous other kinds of particles, such as Altrium, Elisa, GUDAGUDA, Kykeon, Sakura, and Velber, have been discovered as well.

Professor: And of course, there are bound to be more in the future.

Professor: The Shining Blue Galaxy is fairly overflowing with potential. It exists in a wholly new universe where hypothetical scenarios are put to the test equally.

Professor: However, that wasn't the case in the old universe...

Professor: In those days, most people were human, and gods still existed.

Professor: We now call that old universe–the one where all of this began–the Origin Universe.

Professor: But we don't know why the Origin Universe allowed itself to be rewritten into the Shining Blue Galaxy.

Professor: After all, this all took place five billion years ago...

Professor: ...and humanity only started to flourish in the Shining Blue Galaxy about five hundred thousand years ago.

Professor: Needless to say, it is all but impossible to account for a roughly four point nine billion year gap, so we have almost no records of the Origin Universe anymore.

Professor: Five billion years may be an impossibly long time for us humans to comprehend, but for the universe...

Professor: ...or rather, for a god, I expect what happened five billion years ago is hardly any time at all.

Professor: And that means...

Professor: ...if a being from the Origin Universe still exists in the Shining Blue Galaxy today, we will need to be extremely cautious around it.

Professor: Such a being would have stood at the pinnacle of an ancient civilization that far surpasses our own...

Professor: ...and would consider the progress we've made in our universe to perhaps even be insulting. They would look upon it with fresh eyes, as though all of this had happened only yesterday.

Goddess Scripture 2: "Defining Ancient Goddesses"

Talkie: Goddess Scriptures confirmed. Beginning lesson now.

Professor: There were a few different civilizations that flourished back in the Origin Universe, and the most powerful of them was the Goddess Civilization.

Professor: This ancient civilization did not consider the word goddess to refer to a position or an individual life-form.

Professor: For them, the word “goddess” referred to areas where humans could survive and thrive.

Professor: Back in your universe, you have something known as the mother goddess, correct?

Professor: As I understand it, the male gods ensured humans would have war and prosperity, while the mother goddess promised them existence and dominance.

Professor: Many of the mother goddess's symbols are said to be castles, fortresses, and crowns–things one would expect one's protector of livelihood to have.

Professor: Similarly, the goddesses of the Origin Universe were originally no more than concepts–the religious respect people had for the zone that enabled them to survive.

Professor: Over time, those concepts gained personality and became true goddesses that took more direct approaches in the Origin Universe's affairs.

Professor: Those particular circumstances of their birth, so to speak, may explain both why these goddesses were so incredibly powerful, and why they were so hostile to outside civilizations.

Professor: While beings like that would consider their own worshippers within their domains worthy of their full protection...

Professor: ...they would also consider anyone who lived outside that domain to be no better than vermin.

Professor: Even today, they say that the ancient goddesses would often fight among themselves, and that the loser would frequently be completely destroyed.

Professor: But even among all these goddesses, there was one who was especially powerful. She reigned supreme until the Universe Update.

Professor: She was the last goddess to survive in the Origin Universe, the Primordial Goddess.

Professor: There is precious little data about this goddess. My colleagues don't even think she existed at all.

Professor: But I discovered a single record of an incident that took place two thousand years ago which proves otherwise.

Professor: It's a passage of text from a document that the secret Galactic Police once tried to keep buried.

Professor:   “The Primordial Goddess is real. She is about to awaken from a long slumber.”

Professor: “Location: Shining Blue Galaxy Frontier. Coordinates: ■■ Abandoned Planet A-05, formerly Venus”

Professor: With the help of a new sponsor funding the expedition, I set out to visit these coordinates myself.

Professor: I'm recording this lecture from them as I speak. This is all that remains of the old Venusian civilization: an ancient shrine where the goddess still sleeps.

Professor: This place has been forbidden to the public, so almost nobody comes here.

Professor: What is there left to find here? Why is the nearby space so red?

Professor: Those are the mysteries I'm going to solve next.

Goddess Scripture 3: "(No Label)"

Talkie: Goddess Scriptures confirmed. Beginning lesson now.

Professor: I once promised my daughter that I would share an incredible secret with her on her fourteenth birthday and encouraged her to grow up to be graceful, elegant, and bold in the meantime.

Professor: ...And now, I might not live to see that day come. This is not good. Not good at all.

Professor: ...All right, I guess I'd better get some practice in. Ahem. Testing, testing.

Professor: Make sure you're sitting down, because what I have to say may not be easy to hear.

Professor: I wrestled with myself for a long time over whether or not to tell you this.

Professor: To be honest, I'm still not sure it's the right decision.

Professor: Once you learn the truth, this very universe may no longer be a safe place to live.

Professor: But now that I know what they're planning, I've decided you need to know the truth one day.

Professor: You're a very intelligent girl. You may get a little wild sometimes, but I know it's all in good fun.

Professor: So I trust you'll understand what it is I have to tell you.

Professor: ...Ahem. All right, so, um, first of all...

Professor: I'm not your real father.

Professor: Well, I should say I'm not your biological father. I would like to think that I am your real father in all the ways that count.

Professor: ...But I guess how I feel about it isn't what matters now. Please listen, because this is the crucial part.

Professor: The Primordial Goddess from a civilization almost too ancient to even begin to contemplate is real. In fact, she's still alive today.

Professor: She chose to divide herself into good and evil halves, in the form of innocent, newborn, human children.

Professor: I'm sure you see where I'm going with this by now, but just to be clear...

Professor: My dear daughter. My beloved do-gooder. The truth is, you're one half of that goddess...

Professor: Which of course means that you're a true, genuine goddess. Just kidding! (Losing nerve)

Professor: ...Hmm. Looks like I need a little more practice...

Talkie: Error detected. Pausing playback and destroying tape now.

Goddess Scripture 4: "Goddesses and Ancient Shrines"

Talkie: Goddess Scriptures confirmed. Beginning lesson now.

Professor: ...I was wrong.

Professor: I thought the only thing that could possibly resurrect a dead goddess was that shrine and its altar.

Professor: But I had it completely backwards. The goddess IS the shrine and the shrine the goddess.

Professor: We can't afford to let anyone resurrect that ancient shrine. It shouldn't even be in the Shining Blue Galaxy.

Professor: Its very presence here threatens to destroy the laws that govern our reality.

Professor: Normally, there is no such thing as lasting death in the Servantverse.

Professor: Servants that disappear eventually respawn randomly in another part of the universe, or reincarnate in a new body, or even interfere in a parallel world. That's what it means for a soul to be tangible.

Professor: But the place where the ancient shrine exists is ruled by the goddess...

Professor: ...and in her world, the Origin Universe, people are born from mothers and eventually die for good.

Professor: Those who die in the goddess's domain remain in her custody, and will never respawn unless she allows it.

Professor: In time, as all life-forms eventually die out, her universe will become a desolate wasteland.

Professor: I suspect Dark Maanna, Space Shinkageryu's headquarters, is a recreation of the goddess's shrine made using Servant technology.

Professor: And if that's true, then their ultimate goal is obvious.

Professor: They mean to resurrect the ancient goddess's civilization, and use it to rule over the universe.

Professor: But I have to wonder: Do they truly understand what they're doing?

Professor: A man-made shrine just doesn't have what it takes to become a goddess, no matter how closely they duplicate the original.

Professor: Without a genuine goddess to serve as its base, it will never be anything more than an incredibly elaborate model.

Professor: However, all that being said...

Professor: ...If they somehow managed to get their hands on a Spirit Core the Primordial Goddess left behind...

Professor: ...then their ancient shrine imitation would very likely become the real thing.

Professor: Heh. But of course, they won't find Primordial Goddess Spirit Cores just lying around.

Goddess Scripture 5: "Goddess of Love and Hate"

Talkie: Goddess Scriptures confirmed. Beginning lesson now.

Professor: There was one lying around!

Professor: Oh, sorry. A gentleman like myself should know better than to lose his cool like that.

Professor: What I meant to say was, a Primordial Goddess Spirit Core does in fact exist.

Professor: I can't tell you where it was found, or where it is now...

Professor: ...but I can tell you why it was there.

Professor: Two thousand years ago, the Primordial Goddess came back to life at the ancient shrine in the forbidden zone.

Professor: When our universe transitioned from the Origin Universe to the Shining Blue Galaxy, its ancient civilization was supposed to leave this dimension...

Professor: ...and in turn, the Primordial Goddess was supposed to fall asleep and become an ordinary galaxy.

Professor: But the greedy Primordial Goddess refused to obey the Shining Blue Galaxy's rules, and stuck around as a goddess of evil.

Professor: The newly awakened goddess had become like a demon.

Professor: A demon that despised all of humanity... All of Servantkind... Everything about the Shining Blue Galaxy.

Professor: But she wasn't angry that her Origin Universe was gone.

Professor: No, her rage, her hatred, was directed entirely at a condition inherent to all people: oblivion.

Professor: By which I mean our tendency to forget old faiths and relegate history to forgotten annals.

Professor: At any rate, upon awakening, the Primordial Goddess spread her Origin Universe further and further...

Professor: ...steadily eating away at our Shining Blue Galaxy.

Professor: The Primordial Goddess's magical energy was so great that it was clear she would completely erode the Shining Blue Galaxy in about one hundred and twenty-eight days.

Professor: There was no room for peaceful negotiation, and the situation demanded a quick and decisive response.

Professor: So to counter this existential threat, the secret Galactic Police put together an elite team.

Professor: This team consisted of ■■■■■■, one of the final seven Masters in existence, and some of the most skilled Servants in the universe.

Professor: A Saber famed for slaying a dragon. A Lancer known as the siege expert. A literal starry-eyed Archer. A goddess Assassin from the same ancient time period.

Professor: A Rider who claimed to be a Berserker. Mister Universe, aka Merlin. And Space Toshizo, the intergalactic pirate.

Professor: Together, these eight individuals, the anti-goddess unit A Team, set off for the forbidden zone and succeeded brilliantly at eliminating the Primordial Goddess's threat.

Professor: As a result, the forbidden zone became the red desolation it is today, and the goddess's will remained in the altar, which was somehow undamaged in the confrontation.

Professor: It's now been two thousand years since the anti-goddess team defeated her...

Professor: ...and the goddess's will has spent the entirety of that time asleep inside the altar, and slowly coalescing into the goddess's Spirit Core.

Goddess Scripture 6: "A Certain Professor's Reminiscence"

Talkie: Goddess Scriptures confirmed. Beginning lesson now.

Loving Father: The goddess chose to divide herself into good and evil halves, in the form of innocent, newborn, human children.

Loving Father: Though unfortunately, I don't know what her intentions were in doing so.

Loving Father: When I discovered this, I was confronted with several options.

Loving Father: I knew that freezing them and sealing them away for good would be the safest plan as far as humanity was concerned.

Loving Father: But the goddess had made a choice to divide herself, and that had to mean something. So, I felt sealing the halves away would be wrong.

Loving Father: That's why I decided to raise one half as my daughter, and let the other half stay asleep.

Loving Father: Part of that was because, practically speaking, it would have been tremendously difficult to raise two children all on my own...

Loving Father: ...but it was also because raising two children with such different dispositions would cause a great deal of discord.

Loving Father: That just left one question: Which half do I raise?

Loving Father: Obviously, a goddess of good would naturally gravitate towards doing good.

Loving Father: The moment she woke up, she would find herself loved and accepted by people everywhere.

Loving Father: Conversely, a goddess of evil would, of course, be a threat to our galactic peace.

Loving Father: Her very existence would surely lead people to fear and reject her.

Loving Father: ...

Loving Father: I have spent years devoted to my cold, calculated work to bring peace to all humanity. As such, the obvious choice would be to raise the good half.

Loving Father: But...I felt like that wouldn't be the right choice either.

Loving Father: I decided that only a more difficult path would be appropriate.

Loving Father: A path that no one would have ever taken.

Loving Father: It was a lot like how Jane feels when she gets the urge to visit unexplored planets...

Loving Father: ...or how I became genuinely enthralled with archaeology after originally adopting it as a cover.

Loving Father: Our very existence as humans leads us to constantly try to learn new things and relearn things that we once lost.

Loving Father: It would be easy to expel the evil half just for being evil, but that would also leave us no better off than we were before.

Loving Father: So I decided I wanted to extol the virtues of love to the evil goddess, to treat her as a person in her own right, and to have her learn what true happiness is.

Loving Father: So my choice was made, and I woke the evil half up.

Loving Father: Ever since then, every day has been more joyous and fulfilling than I can adequately put into words.

Loving Father: She grew up into a beautiful girl, even more than I had dared hope for. my pride and joy.

Loving Father: All right, that concludes my message.

Loving Father: What you do with these facts now is up to you.

Loving Father: You could keep them to yourself, or you could forget them all if you decide they're not worth the trouble.

Loving Father: Then why bother leaving a message at all, you say? Hahaha, let's just say we doting dads can't help but stick our noses into our children's business.

Loving Father: Since I figured you would be traveling with her someday, I thought you should hear her whole story.

Loving Father: Anyway, I think I've talked enough now. I hope you and my daughter have a great adventure together.

Extra: ECO Mode, Drive-in

Ashtart's Bodyguard: That's all the footage the drone sent us. We haven't heard back from Lord Darkened Sword since.

Ashtart: ...Tell me, Munenori, what did I just see?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...

Ashtart: Munenori.

F:Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Khh hooh. Khh hooh.

Ashtart: What have I said about using your mask to hide when you have bad news to deliver!?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Forgive me, my lady. I was simply so ashamed of the Six Blades' abysmal performance that I could not bear to show my face.

Ashtart: I wasn't asking about the Six Blades. I was asking about that bounty hunter.

Ashtart: Why does she look just like me?

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Hmm, is that how it seemed to you? I'm afraid these old eyes aren't what they used to be, so I can't say for–

Ashtart: Don't give me that! You were my teacher! I know you can make out a quark at a thousand paces! Now stop stalling and tell me already!

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...My humble apologies, my lady. You have every right to be angry.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I put this behind me long ago, since it no longer has anything to do with you...but I suppose there is no harm in sharing it to pass the time.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: Very well then, this is the story. I think you will find it amusing.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: ...And there you have it.

Ashtart: ......

D:Ashtart: All right, that's enough Dislikes for today, Munenori. I'm going to be taking a short leave of absence from my leadership duties.

Warrior of Darkness Munenori: I see. May I ask why, my lady? Is there somewhere you wish to go?

D:Ashtart: As if you need to ask. I'm going to go dispose of her myself.

Space Ishtar: Okay start the engine output test.

Talkie: Warning. Damage to main engine has reduced output by thirty percent.

Talkie: I cannot let you continue your voyage with the ship in this condition. I advise you to take a deep breath and proceed with repairs in a more orderly manner.

Jane: Guess that's that then. We just can't go at full speed now, or the engine's gonna fall apart.

Space Ishtar: Ugh, that knight guy just HAAAD to hit our engine. Guess we gotta go find a dry dock then.

Jane: 'Kay! I'll do a quick search for the nearest spaceport.

Jane: ...Whoa! Taking this solar system's orbital positioning into account...

Jane: looks like the garage at your house might actually be the closest one to us, Ishtarin!

Space Ishtar: My house? Really?

Fujimaru 1: You have a house!?

Space Ishtar: What, do you think Servants just appear out of thin air or something? Of course I have a house!

Space Ishtar: ...Not that anyone's living there right now, seeing how it's been ten years since I ran away from home and all.

Fujimaru 1: You ran away from home?

Space Ishtar: Oh, don't worry, it's not like some tragic backstory or anything. I just left to become a bounty hunter is all.

Fujimaru 2: Ten years ago? How old are you again!?

Space Ishtar: Can't you tell? I'm fourteen.

Space Ishtar: Servants stop aging when we're in the prime of our lives, right? I left home when I was fourteen, so there you go.

X: I don't have any issue going back to your family home, Ishtar, but are we going to be able to make the repairs we need in your garage?

Space Ishtar: Of course. I made Maanna in that garage anyway.

Space Ishtar: At any rate, Jane and I can handle the repairs ourselves, so you two can wander around and sightsee in the meantime.

Space Ishtar: How's that sound to you, Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: Sounds great!

Space Ishtar: Then it's settled. Jane, set a course for Planet Zenjou, please.

Jane: You got it! It should take us about an hour to get there without warping!

Fujimaru 1: So hey, can I ask you something?

Fujimaru 2: So why'd you become a bounty hunter, anyway?

Space Ishtar: Uh... I guess I'd say...because it suits me?

Space Ishtar: I mean, I get to travel around, make money, help people... And it's not like I've got anyone waiting for me at home anymore anyway.

Space Ishtar: Oh, I guess Jane had something to do with it too.

Space Ishtar: She's the one who told me a bounty hunter was better than a cop, and she was sure I could hack it.

Jane: Really? I don't remember saying that. Hmm, but it does sound like something I'd say.

Space Ishtar: Seriously? You don't even remember!?

Space Ishtar: I was at a major crossroads back then! It was probably the single biggest decision of my life!

Jane: Sorryyy☆ But hey, at least everything worked out, right?

Jane: It would've just made things worse if you'd stayed there wringing your hands...

Jane: ...and besides, you really did turn out to have a gift for the hunt!

Jane: If you didn't, you wouldn't still be alive after leaving school and changing your class so suddenly, right?

Fujimaru 1: That reminds me, I've been meaning to ask about this school.

Fujimaru 2: So you used to go to school here, Space Ishtar?

Space Ishtar: Why yes. I'm quite sure this won't mean much to you, Fujimaru...

Space Ishtar: ...but I'll have you know I once attended Planet Zenjou's exclusive Queens Academy for Girls.

Space Ishtar: Hohohoho.

X: A-are you serious!? You went to Queens, Ishtar!?

Fujimaru 1: You've heard of it, X?

X: You bet I have! It's the finest school for young ladies in the entire Servantverse!

X: You can't even get in unless your family is royalty or filthy rich. I used to wish I could go there myself...

Space Ishtar: That's a bit of an exaggeration, but I'll give you that all the students at Queens are young ladies of good upbringing.

Space Ishtar: It might look pretty fancy and elegant from the outside...

Space Ishtar: ...but honestly, I think my time there prepared me perfectly for life as a bounty hunter.

X: Huh? What does Queens have to do with bounty hunting?

Space Ishtar: ...

Space Ishtar: Fair point. Nothing, really. I don't know why I said that. Queens is an old and respectable institution, after all.

Space Ishtar: Anyway, we're coming up on Planet Zenjou now. Make sure you're all strapped in for the landing!

Extra: To the Beginning of Space

A:Saber: So you say your Noble Phantasm's true nature lies in the ability to perceive truth?

Archer: That's right. Well, strictly speaking, it lies in the ability to see an opponent's cards...and from there, their true intentions.

Archer: It can find their hidden weakness and make it a reality, no matter how much they might outclass me.

Archer: Of course, it doesn't actually make me any stronger, nor does it then give me any special ability to defeat that opponent...

Archer: it isn't much use to me alone. It only creates an opportunity for someone else, just like a good scout should.

Archer: Still, now, I'm proud to have this Noble Phantasm. It gives us a real shot at defeating her.

Archer: She may be beyond our understanding, and normally, we might not be any match for her...

Archer: ...but thanks to my Noble Phantasm, I can tell all the others what they need to do to beat her.

Archer: Setting aside that we don't yet know if we're capable of pulling off whatever that might be.

A:Saber: There is no need for such modesty, my friend. Your Noble Phantasm is a tremendous asset.

A:Saber: Normally, finding an enemy's weak point is something that takes years of experience and countless battles.

A:Saber: But you can find it even in an opponent you've never fought before...

A:Saber: ...or in an opponent that all of Servantkind...

A:Saber: ...has never once successfully defeated.

A:Saber: Like a lone star piercing the veil of darkness.

Archer: ...Y-you really think so? Aw man, you're gonna make me blush!

Archer: Okay then, the combo Noble Phantasm plan it is! So what should we call it?

Saber: Hmm, let's see. You shine a light on the target, while I open fire on it, so... Got it.

Saber: What if we call this dual Noble Phantasm strategy “Star Four Card”?

Archer: ...That sounds AWESOME!!! We've gotta go with that!

Archer: Just you wait! I promise I'm gonna pull this off!

Archer: This can't be right! I know we destroyed her Spirit Core! Does this mean that's not enough to stop her!?

Saber: Khh... I'm afraid my Spirit Origin is crumbling. Archer, there's no need for both of us to die. Go on. Save yourself.

Saber: That...thing is beyond any Servant's ability to defeat. We need a much bigger weapon...

Archer: No way! I might just be a scout, but I can still save your life! Come on, Siggy, you and I are getting out of here together!

???: There is no need to escape. My Spirit Origin is shattered. You two have won this battle.

???: Heroes brave enough to vanquish a god deserve to be rewarded. So a reward you shall have.

???: Rejoice. From now until the day I awaken once again, neither of you will be permitted to die.

???: Instead, you will wander for nigh eternity in your frail human bodies.

Saber: Aaarghhh!

Jane: Oh crap, the whole universe is rumbling! I don't know for certain, but it sure feels like the Primordial Goddess is about to wake up!

Fujimaru 1: It's all so red out there!

Fujimaru 2: What's going on!?

Jane: This is the Origin Universe–maybe the single most dangerous of all the many forbidden zones.

Jane: The Shining Blue Galaxy we come from looks blue to us because it's permeated with ether more than dark matter...but that wasn't the case in the Origin Universe.

Jane: The Origin Universe was around over five billion years ago, way before the Shining Blue Galaxy existed.

Space Ishtar: The Origin Universe... That's the universe from before ours, right? The one where Masters still existed?

Space Ishtar: Does this mean part of it is still around now?

Jane: I don't know how it works, but yeah, that's right. And there's a shrine devoted to the Primordial Goddess just up ahead.

Jane: It's the place where the Primordial Goddess is said to originate in the Goddess Scriptures... The ancient shrine, Bel Maanna.

Jane: If that's where the two Space Shinkageryu people went, they must really be serious about bringing her back.

Jane: And there's nothing anyone can do to stop her if they succeed.

Space Ishtar: In the legend, my original self wanted revenge on all Servantkind, right? I wonder why she felt that way...

Jane: She said it was just the way of things. I can still remember her exact words.

Jane: “I care nothing for this new universe. I love naught but my own world, and shall have vengeance on those who took it from me.”

Space Ishtar: Gotcha. Hmm...

Space Ishtar: Well, then I got no problem picking a fight with her.

Fujimaru 1: ...Why would you do that?

Fujimaru 2: I don't get it. Isn't she, like, the real you?

Space Ishtar: Oh come on. We couldn't be more different if we tried!

Space Ishtar: If I empathized with this goddess's position even a little, I might be having second thoughts...

Space Ishtar: ...but if she's gonna be all like “I care nothing for this new universe,” then nope.

Space Ishtar: I mean, I love new things, in all shapes, and sizes, especially entertainment and luxury!

Space Ishtar: There's no way I'm gonna let some backassward self of mine roll the clock all the way back to ancient times!

Jane: Well said, Ishtarin! Now that's what I call pioneer spirit!

Space Ishtar: N-never mind that, Jane. Just take us to this ancient shrine already. You've been there once before, right?

Space Ishtar: Do you have any idea where we might find the Space Shinkageryu guys there?

Jane: I bet they'll be at the goddess resurrection altar! Hang on tight! I'll get us there as fast as the Maanna can go!