Cosmos in the Lostbelt 2: Eternal Frozen Fire Century - Götterdämmerung

intro. 2-1

???: “...I repeat: I am a mage from Proper Human History. Please come find me at the following coordinates...”

???: “This is Baldanders, the Wandering Sea. ”

Goredolf: Wandering Sea...Wandering Sea...!? THE Wandering Sea!?

Goredolf: That's one of the three great organizations of the magecraft world...! There's the Clock Tower in London, the Atlas Institute in Egypt...

Goredolf: ...and the oldest of them all, the Wandering Sea...! It was located on an island from the Age of Gods, hidden in the northern oceans...!

Goredolf: Does this still exists!?

Meunière: Atmospheric analysis complete. Nitrogen, oxygen,argon, and carbon dioxide levels, all green.

Meunière: The mana in the atmosphere is almost identical to levels in the twenty-first century. I'm not picking up any harmful trace substances either.

Goredolf: Hmm. So we still have breathable air,even in this creepy, bleached world...

Goredolf: Well, that means we can park the Shadow Border and go have a look for ourselves.

Goredolf: What do you think, Fujimaru? Doesn't that sound intriguing, stepping out into a world of sheer nothing in every direction?

Goredolf: Hahaha, of course it does! First we'll go out and get some fresh air, then we'll look for food–

Fujimaru 1: I am kind of interested, but...

Fujimaru 2: You still haven't told me what the Wandering Sea actually is...

Goredolf: ...(Cryptic silence)

Goredolf: ...(Empty smile)

Fujimaru 1: ...You don't know either, do you?

Goredolf: O-o-of course I do, you dolt! Goredolf Musik is not a man to pretend to know something he doesn't!

Goredolf: The Mage's Association isn't a monolith,I'll have you know!

Goredolf: Just because I used to work at the Clock Tower doesn't mean I've ever been to the supposedly living Wandering Sea in the North Sea!

Meunière: Oh, so you've only heard rumors? I thought you were from some big, important family, old man!

Goredolf: Don't you call me that, Double-Chin! If I must spell it out for you, then here it is:

Goredolf: The Wandering Sea of Baldanders is the first enigma ever discovered in the world of magecraft, and it will be the last to be puzzled out.

Goredolf: It's an island so mysterious and full of Mystics that even such a gifted mage of an incredibly prestigious bloodline as myself may not even set foot on it!

Mash: It's true. That all fits with what's in Chaldea's database.

Mash: It says that though the Mage's Association has been around since the start of the A. D. era, it also split into three branches shortly after its inception.

Mash: The mages who settled in London evolved with the times, and focused on developing magecraft over the course of history.

Mash: That faction went on to become the Clock Tower, the largest and most powerful magecraft organization in the world.

Mash: Its members include the Animusphere family–the founders of Chaldea–and Mr. Goredolf here.

Goredolf: Quite so. Here in the twenty-first century, the Mage's Association and the Clock Tower are all but synonymous.

Mash: The next major faction is the Atlas Institute in Egypt. They're dedicated to perfecting alchemy.

Mash: We actually infiltrated their headquarters once,during the Sixth Singularity.

Mash: It was a huge research complex, almost like a giant crypt, built deep underground. And as easy as it was to get in, it was hard to get out.

Mash: The Atlas Institute's ironclad rule is that the technology created there must never leave...

Mash: ...but Chaldea's first director was granted an exemption, thanks to the Atlas Contract.

Mash: The technology he was able to take from the Atlas Institute enabled him to complete Chaldeas.

Mash: It was also the Atlas Institute that presented him with the Void-Reality Observation Device, Paper Moon–one of the finest Mystic Codes ever made.

Goredolf: Indeed. They seldom poke their noses out of their little hole in the ground, but I am told they do converse with Lords, albeit as little as possible.

Goredolf: They may be a heartless bunch who only care about weapons and technology, but they can be rather useful if you play your cards right.

Mash: And finally, the last faction is the Wandering Sea, the Baldanders, said to be somewhere in the North Sea.

Mash: However, the most I could find about them was a brief overview, even in Chaldea's extensive files.

Mash: It said that their cardinal rule is to only recognize magecraft from the Age of Gods, and refuse to accept any advancements or alterations urged by civilization.

Mash: In essence, their ideology is the exact opposite of the Clock Tower's.

Holmes: Indeed. Refusing to accept progress in magecraft means refusing to accept consumer civilization.

Holmes: The Wandering Sea's philosophy of magecraft is fundamentally incompatible with modern human society.

Holmes: That is why they keep their gates firmly shut,and why they seldom add to their number...

Goredolf: Hmph. In other words, they're a bunch of old fuddy-duddies obsessed with magecraft so ancient it has to be measured with carbon dating.

Goredolf: That said, they do open their gates just once every year to try and recruit promising new talent...

Goredolf: ...but even among mages of the Clock Tower, the number who actually make it to the Wandering Sea can be counted on one hand.

Goredolf: Do you see my point? I'm saying the Wandering Sea is every bit as secretive as the Atlas Institute, just in a different way.

Goredolf: No one from the outside has ever been able to get the full story. The reason being–

Holmes: As the name suggests,the Wandering Sea is always on the move.

Holmes: Most who know of it believe it to be a floating island somewhere in the North Sea, but it is, in fact, the very opposite.

Holmes: The Wandering Sea's headquarters were built before the A. D. era began, and they never move at all. It is instead the sea in which they are located that moves around. A world unto itself in many ways...

Holmes: That is almost certainly why its location still remains a secret even in the twenty-first century.

Holmes: Land that moves around while placing Mystic textures on itself...I see. That would make it its own independent Singularity.

Holmes: It would also explain how it was able to escape whatever turned the earth's surface into an endless white desert.

Goredolf: Hmph! All this time they've been turning their noses up at us, but the moment things go south, they don't have any issue sending us a distress signal!

Goredolf: Some successors to “true” Mystics they turned out to be! They should try taking a page from our book!

Goredolf: We're the ones who made it through Russia by the skin of our teeth, with no outside help! WE'RE the ones who are currently flailing about with no plan!

Meunière: At least you understand that the situation is still pretty dire, I guess...

Mash: ...Given the present circumstances, it looks like the people of the Wandering Sea have decided to bend their rules in order to offer us a lifeboat...

Goredolf: At any rate! H-hmm...Administrative Advisor Holmes! I have a question for you!

Goredolf: I would like to be as certain as possible. What do you make of this? Can we trust that their distress signal is genuine?

Holmes: I'm afraid I can't speak to that. What do you think, Da Vinci?

Da Vinci: Could go either way from the look of it. This transmission isn't part of the Clock Tower's standards, but its wavelength is pretty close to the waveforms the Atlas Institute uses.

Da Vinci: Since we don't have any data about the Wandering Sea ourselves, I can't really give you a definitive answer.

Da Vinci: Still, I can verify that there's definitely something to be found at these coordinates.

Da Vinci: Whatever their story is, if there's a magecraft workshop there, I'd really like to at least check it out.

Da Vinci: I know we managed to stretch things with the materials we got in Russia, but there are still limits to what the Shadow Border can do.

Da Vinci: What I really want to do is retune the whole frame from scratch, but I doubt we'll be finding much in the way of materials considering the entire world seems to be an empty wasteland.

Holmes: Hmm. These coordinates from the Wandering Sea would put it in...the seas west of Norway.

Holmes: We could go through the Scandinavian Peninsula,or turn north at Germany and cut across Denmark.

Holmes: We just left Moscow heading west, so it will take us a few days to reach them regardless of our route.

Holmes: Assuming that the Border can convert the mana in the atmosphere into electricity, that just leaves the question of food.

Fujimaru 1: What if we go to the Wandering Sea via Zero Sail?

Fujimaru 2: Can't we just, you know, pop over there?

Da Vinci: Uh-uh. No Zero Sails. As technical advisor, I expressly forbid it.

Da Vinci: Even if we are going to run into another one of those storm walls along the way, we need to stick to the surface as much as possible.

Goredolf: But why!? And did you just say there are more of those storm walls!?

Goredolf: Explain yourself, Technical Advisor!

Goredolf: If there's another storm wall in our path, doesn't that mean running straight into another Lostbelt!?

Da Vinci: We don't have any other choice, Goredolf. Not with the two big problems we're facing...

Da Vinci: First, there's the small matter of the Wandering Sea living up to its name. These coordinates they sent us are all over the place.

Da Vinci: ...Literally, in fact. They're in a constant state of flux–nothing definite or precise.

Da Vinci: With coordinates like these, it would be very risky to try Zero Sailing there with the Paper Moon.

Da Vinci: So until and unless we go to the Wandering Sea directly and forge some kind of connection to it, a long distance Zero Sail is out of the question.

Da Vinci: Second–and this is the real problem–we don't have the energy.

Da Vinci: Yes, Holmes oh so helpfully suggested converting mana into electricity as if it were a simple matter, but that can only get us so far.

Da Vinci: The conversion rate isn't efficient enough, so we'd end up spending more power than we can produce, which would make a long Zero Sail trip fatal.

Da Vinci: After all, no more power means no more working life-support systems. And I don't know about you guys, but I sure don't want to be out in this bleached white world all by myself.

Meunière: Good point...The logic walls we have to put up in Void Space do use a lot of power...

Meunière: At our current energy levels, I don't think the Border could last two hours there. And like Da Vinci said, we don't even have the exact coordinates we need.

Goredolf: G-grr...!

Goredolf: So what? Are you saying we need to enter another Lostbelt if we're going to reach this possible hope for salvation!?

Goredolf: Where is this new Lostbelt, anyway!?

Da Vinci: If we use a typical world map, then the entire Scandinavian Peninsula is covered by one of these storm walls.

Da Vinci: Another half a day or so of driving...and you should all get to see the closest thing to the edge of the world for yourselves.

Holmes: ...I take that to mean this white, featureless ground will continue until we exit Russian territory then.

Holmes: At any rate, we have two possible routes to the Wandering Sea's designated coordinates:

Holmes: One that takes us across the Scandinavian Peninsula, and one that brings us out to sea via Poland and Germany.

Holmes: Da Vinci, in your estimation, which of these gives us our best chance? Should we go by land, or by sea?

Da Vinci: I think making a sea voyage would be a lot to ask of the Border. We could perhaps get through the Strait of Dover...

Da Vinci: ...but to be honest, I'd rather we keep our distance from the British Isles, since we have no idea about the state of the oceans just now.

Da Vinci: So what I'm saying is, I think the overland route is the best choice right now.

Holmes: Good grief. No sooner are we done with one Lostbelt than we're off to a second. Your thoughts, [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: ...Honestly, that's a scary thought.

Holmes: Indeed, I heartily concur. But I promise you will have our full support.

Holmes: To be afraid in a situation such as this is the mark of sanity. Let us just leave it at that.

Fujimaru 2: Um...are there any other regions we could cross?

Goredolf: An excellent question! I want to know what's going on in the rest of the world, too! What about Europe, for instance!?

Da Vinci: The Scandinavian Peninsula is the only place with a storm wall. I'm not seeing anything on the Greek side whatsoever.

Da Vinci: Also...I didn't mention this before because I didn't want to upset you, but I'm not seeing anything from England at all.

Da Vinci: We need more powerful observation equipment than what the Shadow Border's got to see what's happening with the British Isles.

Goredolf: Grr, so you're set on having us cross the Scandinavian Peninsula then, aren't you, Da Vinci!?

Goredolf: All right, we've come this far after leaving Moscow, so at the Border's current speed...

Goredolf: ...we should reach the peninsula in about two days! Very well then! Use that time to make sure we're fully prepared!

Goredolf: Meunière! If we run into anything we could use to shore up our defenses along the way, take that opportunity to stop the Border and ensure everything is in good working order!

Goredolf: Da Vinci, you look after the little Demi-Servant girl. I can't have her falling down on the job!

Goredolf: Holmes, come with me! We're going to the solitary confinement chamber!

Mash: Solitary confinement...Mr. Goredolf, does that mean–

Goredolf: Of course. I'm going there to interrogate Kadoc. He should be waking up anytime now.

Goredolf: It's time for me to put my brilliant"questioning" skills to use!

Goredolf: When I'm through with him, he'll have told us what the Crypters are, what Wodime is planning...everything! Mark my words!

Fujimaru 1: I'm coming too.

Goredolf: Hmph. Don't you look at me like that.

Goredolf: You need the right people for the right job. I admit I may not be the best fit for interrogation, but you? Even less so.

Goredolf: Don't you worry. Kadoc may be something of a twisted little brat, but he's still a growing boy. Merely tempt him with food and he'll be putty in my hands!

Goredolf: Trust me! One whiff of my creamy carbonara will turn his complexion from sour milk to sunflowers in an instant!

Fujimaru 2: ...

Goredolf: Oh, yes, of course. I almost forgot to give you orders as well. Me, of all people!

Goredolf: If you've got nothing better to do, then go help Meunière with his work. Or just go up on the deck and take a look around if you like.

Holmes: Worry not, [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru. I'll see to it that the interrogation doesn't devolve into violence.

Holmes: ...In fact,I have my own questions I wish to ask him.

Holmes: I have a fairly good idea of the Crypters' goal now, and I also believe I know the extent of Kadoc Zemlupus's personal knowledge.

Holmes: However, there are still two important things I know little about: the Tree of Emptiness, and that Sirius Light Command Spell of his.

Holmes: Granted, the latter is something Kadoc merely mentioned once, and may not be that impor–

Goredolf: A-an emergency alert!? What's this all about!? I thought there weren't supposed to be any more Oprichniki!

Da Vinci: We're not out of the Russian woods yet! Something's approaching us at high speed!

Da Vinci: It's closing in on our port side at over ninety kilometers per hour!

Da Vinci: Come on, Meunière! Floor it before it catches up to us!

Meunière: I can't! We're just about to go uphill! The Border can't go any faster!

Da Vinci: Oh crap, I'm picking up a heat signature too! It' RPG!

Da Vinci: Impact in three, two–

Goredolf: I felt that! Please tell me that wasn't a direct hit, Da Vinci!

Goredolf: Damage report! Is the engine intact? Are we going to have to bail in the middle of this race!?

Holmes: I'm sure the damage is negligible, and our armor still perfectly intact. We shouldn't need to do more than wipe off the scorch mark.

Holmes: The Shadow Border's armor is a composite of cutting-edge technology and magecraft theory. Normal weapons can't even scratch it.

Meunière: That's not what I'm seeing, Holmes! That blast took out one of our armor plates! Another hit like that, and we'll be in deep shit!

Holmes: Huh? Really?

Fujimaru 1: Some great detective you are!

Fujimaru 2: Hoooooolmes!

Goredolf: Then, that means...I-I remember now!

Goredolf: This is the same sort of explosion I felt way back–er, two weeks ago, when I was just a hapless, albeit handsome, man being shot at with an anti-materiel rifle!

Goredolf: This can only mean that Koyanskaya is back to finish the job! I-it really might be curtains this time!

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Meunière: Spare us the trip down memory lane, old man! Come on, Holmes! Do something!

Holmes: Right! My apologies; I'm not used to eating crow.

Holmes: Evacuate all staff in the port-side hallway to the engine room immediately. Ms. Kyrielight and I will go and deal with this attack.

Holmes: On that note, Ms. Kyrielight, I would like you to put up a magical energy barrier in the internal hallway, so as to fend off a possible second round.

Holmes: I trust you're all right with that, Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: I am. Go for it, Mash!

Mash: Don't worry, Senpai. I won't let them put one more scratch on the Border!

Fujimaru 2: I'm coming with

Goredolf: Oh no you don't! You stay right here! We can't have everyone running off and leaving the Command Room!

Meunière: The hostile entity should reach the Border in fifty meters! Putting up visual now!

Goredolf: Grr, they must think they're hot stuff. Their vehicle must have impressive suspension if they're heading straight at us, though...

Goredolf: I didn't think Russia had any race cars like that around!

Goredolf: All right, where are you, you little leftover Oprichnik? Let's see what you look li–What the ACTUAL HELL!?

Mash: That's not a vehicle! It's a person!

Mash: Someone is approaching on foot! Wait...That silhouette...!

Holmes: Clergy vestments and a Lostbelt Servant reading...It's that priest! The one who calls himself Metropolitan Macarius...!

Narration: ...I woke up when I thought I heard a voice calling me. It was a cold, almost brittle kind of voice.

Narration: I? I guess this means I'm still alive...

Kadoc: ...!

Narration: There's a dull ache in the back of my head where I got pistol-whipped. He sure wasn't playing around.

Kadoc: ...Goddamn cowboy. Shouldn't outlaws be cool and laid-back and all that?

Kadoc: ...This shaking...Am I in a vehicle? This must be the Shadow Border...

Narration: I try to assess the circumstances as best I can in this dimly lit place. Looks like they took me prisoner.

Narration: They'd bound my hands, but now I can move around freely. The anti-magecraft cuffs they must have used on me are lying in pieces on the floor.

Narration: ...Did I break them unconsciously, while I was out? No, I couldn't have. I know I'm not capable of that.

Kadoc: ...Why are the cuffs so damn cold? Did something freeze them enough to turn them brittle?

Narration: Or maybe it's her farewell gift to me...Ugh. That the thought even entered my mind makes me sick.

Narration: I don't have time to get all sentimental. Now that I've failed, I don't have the right.

Kadoc: ...'Course, that doesn't mean I'm going to waste this opportunity. If I'm gonna make a getaway...

Narration: Is someone attacking the Shadow Border from the outside...? But, the only ones who would do that are the Crypters...

Kadoc: Does that mean someone's here to rescue me? ...No. There's no chance of that.

Narration: They're here to shut me up. There's no other reason anyone would waste their time on a loser like me.

Narration: All right, I can't just sit around and wait for them to kill me.

Narration: First off, I've gotta find a way out of here. After that, who knows?

Narration: Escaping's all I can hope for now. Once that's done, I'll just have to see where the winds take me.

Goredolf: Dammit, there goes another one! What's the situation!?

Meunière: Mash raised her shield just in time! That one barely did anything! Way to go, Mash!

Fou: Fou, fou!

Meunière: The hostile Servant is still in pursuit on the Border's port side!

Meunière: Wait, is he about to fire again!? How many rounds did he even bring with him!?

Goredolf: Grr, I just noticed the NFF Services marking on that thing! It must be one of Koyanskaya's weapons!

Goredolf: No wonder it was able to damage the magecraft armor!

Goredolf: That said...heh, it looks like that priest is all sermon and no rod. Like pearls before swine, so too gold before Musik, I suppose?

Goredolf: The only one who could properly handle a modern magecraft weapon like that is Koyanskaya hersel–

Da Vinci: Wait, what!? The hatch is open! Why is the hatch open!?

Da Vinci: Goredolf, quick! Check the internal surveillance cameras!

Da Vinci: I think someone opened the Border's hatch and got outside!

Fujimaru 1: ...!

Fujimaru 2: There's someone on the starboard ramp...!

Goredolf: What!? That can't be right! You expect me to believe someone is hanging off the side like this is some kind of action mov–

Goredolf: Wait! That's Kadoc Zemlupus! Just how many adventure-crazed nuts are there around here!?

Da Vinci: I thought there was something on us! The signal's headed toward the deck now!

Goredolf: Grr, so he's trying to take advantage of the confusion to escape, eh!? Come on, Fujimaru!

Goredolf: We're taking that hatch and going up there too!

Goredolf: Do not let Kadoc get away! I have a mountain of questions I still need to ask him!

Fujimaru 1: Right...!

Kadoc: ...Tch. You, huh. Figures you'd show up.

Kadoc: You're looking a little less dazed now. Glad to see you're back to your usual happy-go-lucky nonsense.

Fujimaru 1: Looks like you're back up and at 'em, too.

Kadoc: Yeah? Guess we've both been pushing ourselves to the limit. Takes its toll though, doesn't it?

Kadoc: I always felt the pressure before,but it's even worse now that it's gone.

Kadoc: Hell, I might as well have had a bag of feathers on my shoulders earlier, compared to now.

Kadoc: We both knew what we wanted to do,but we didn't really get it.

Fujimaru 2: ...Yeah. Patxi snapped me out of it.

Kadoc: I see...So that Yaga's dead now, huh.

Kadoc: I would've won if not for him. Guess that stupid speech of his was potent shit for you.

Kadoc: He was a thorn in my side, but even I gotta admit he was a hell of a guy. I won't repeat the mistake of writing someone like him off as a loser.

Goredolf: Enough chitchat already, Zemlupus!

Goredolf: Get back inside the Border now, and I'll make sure you're treated fairly under international law!

Goredolf: Trust me, you don't want to be stupid and go jumping off a moving vehicle like this.

Goredolf: I can tell you from experience that you'll regret it! You'll end up dead and we'll have lost you.

Goredolf: Show me that you're willing to help us, and I'd be willing to put in a good word for you with the Association!

Kadoc: ...Hmph. You don't have to threaten me. I thought there might be a lifeboat or something out here, but there's nothing.

Kadoc: Getting out here was a huge pain in the ass,and it looks like it was all for nothing.

Kadoc: Once, I might've jumped off just to spite you, but now...

Kadoc: Now, I've got a promise to keep. I can't go throwing my life away.

Kadoc: You want to interrogate me, right? Fine. I'll tell you everything you want to know.

Kadoc: That's a small price to pay for survival. At this point, I don't care what it takes to stay ali–

E:???: Excellent. This makes my little insurance trip out here well worth it.

Kadoc: ...!

Goredolf: T-t-turn around, you idiot!

Fujimaru 1: Kadoc!

Kadoc: Ras...putin...You...son of a...

Priest: Why, if it isn't Goredolf Musik. How nice to see you again.

Priest: You too, Master of Chaldea. Allow me to offer my congratulations on successfully taking down Russia.

Fujimaru 1: Let go of him, right now...!

Priest: I'm afraid I can't do that. I have my own concerns. You understand, of course.

Priest: My job was to oversee Kadoc Zemlupus's role as a Crypter, and that role has come to an end.

Priest: So I thought I would give him as merciful a send-off as possible.

Fujimaru 1: ...!

Goredolf: (Grr, as if Da Vinci wasn't enough,now he's gone and stabbed Kadoc in the back too...! )

Goredolf: (As a gentleman, I'm honor bound to stop him,but my Gof Punch will never work on him...! )

Goredolf: (Dammit, where's Holmes when you need him!? I thought he was always supposed to be two steps ahead! )

Priest: Not to worry, Director Goredolf. Eliminating all of you isn't in my job description.

Priest: Russia is currently my sole jurisdiction, you see.

Priest: As such, I needed to handle this before you'd left the area entirely.

Priest: I hope you can forgive the necessity of my resorting to such drastic measures, unbefitting of my age though they are.

Priest: I'm afraid I lack Koyanskaya's ability to move between Lostbelts. I'm limited to getting around the same way you do.

Priest: As a middle manager of sorts, I'm not able to go to the next Lostbelt without the Foreign God's permission.

Holmes: Foreign God...? Intriguing. Would you be so good as to tell us more, Metropolitan Macarius?

Mash: I'm sorry I'm late, Master! ...Huh? Kadoc...!?

Priest: Now then, I'd best be on my way. I hope you won't mind my saving the answer to your question for our next meeting, Sherlock!

Priest: Oh, but before I go, I would at least like to put a stop to this false name you've been using for me.

Priest: My True Name is Rasputin. Grigori Rasputin.

Priest: That said, I confess that this Spirit Origin doesn't belong to me. I'm simply borrowing it from a dead man.

Holmes: I deduced all that long ago, my dear priest. My concerns are more fundamental in nature.

Holmes: ...Where did you acquire that dead man? In Proper Human History, Kotomine Kirei's body was cremated.

Holmes: So how did you come to take possession of a dead man without a body?

Priest: Oh, I'm sure you'll figure that out sooner or later, Sherlock. That is, after all, what you do.

Priest: You once called the Incineration of Humanity a“mythological murder case. ”

Priest: In which case, go ahead and label this attack the same way. Ask yourself who committed this crime, and how.

Priest: Once you have arrived at that answer,we will meet again.

Priest: When that day comes, I look forward to you accusing the culprit in person.

Mash: Father Kotomine–I mean,Rasputin has made off with Kadoc!

Mash: What should we do, Senpai!? Maybe if we turn the Border around now–

Holmes: Don't bother. We'll never catch up,and we can't risk going back to Russia.

Holmes: We'll just have to give up on interrogating Kadoc Zemlupus...This was my fault. I should have considered that someone may pursue us.

Kadoc: ...Khh. Dammit, I can't believe I got knocked out again.

Kadoc: Sneaking up on people and stabbing them is kind of your thing, huh? I think my heart actually stopped for a while back there.

Priest: Indeed, it did.

Priest: If it hadn't, do you really think Holmes would have let us escape so easily?

Priest: No, if he had realized you were still alive, they would have come back to retrieve you. I couldn't let that happen.

Priest: Not after Kirschtaria asked me to bring you back to Olympus.

Kadoc: ...Is that so. Well, it doesn't matter either way. You wasted your time, Rasputin.

Priest: Oh?

Kadoc: Whether Chaldea kills me, or Wodime does it,I'll be just as dead.

Kadoc: Now that I've failed, I don't belong with either of them. I'm just going to be an example to the other Crypters.

Priest: ...

Kadoc: What? What is it? If you've got something to say,then spit it out, “Father. ”

Priest: Apologies. I was just thinking how much easier my job would be if Kirschtaria was that sort of person.

Priest: At any rate, it's clear what's going to happen to you.

Priest: You may have lost your right to run a Lostbelt,but you still have your Sirius Light.

Priest: That Command Spell belongs to our god. As long as you possess it, your life does not belong to you alone.

Priest: You no longer have the option of throwing your life away, Kadoc Zemlupus.

Priest: Your fate is to have every last bit of your soul squeezed out of you, until the day you die.

intro. 2-2

It's been two days since Rasputin,the Pseudo-Servant, attacked. The Chaldeans are currently on their way to the Lostbelt in Scandinavia. ...Everything is so white.

The words “blank slate” have never seemed so appropriate. It's like the entire surface has been...reset. Nothing but pure white wherever you look. Everything is gone. Nature...civilization...even the flora and fauna have completely disappeared. No, not disappeared...It's more like they've all been pruned away.

All there is to see in every direction is a pure, white plain–though there were a few topographical exceptions along the way. It looked like the remains of some buildings, but they appeared to have been warped by extreme heat, or destroyed in some kind of shock wave. Whatever the cause, upon closer inspection, one could see that these had once been man-made structures of some kind.

This led to Fujimaru and [♂ his /♀ her] allies stepping out of the Shadow Border to investigate further. The atmospheric composition was normal. The air was breathable, and the gravity was the same as before. There was no need for a hazard suit or space suit or anything of the sort.

“Good thing you didn't have to get all dressed up like an astronaut, huh? ” said Leonardo da Vinci with a cherubic smile.

Mash: ...Look, Senpai, you can see them up ahead...Buildings.

Mash: It looks like even the buildings have been bleached. That explains why we couldn't see them at a distance.

Mash: ......

Mash: ...Those ARE buildings, right?

Mash: If there are any survivors here, we should bring them back to the Border as soon as–

She trailed off all of a sudden. Probably because what she saw was beyond anything she could have imagined. No one could blame her. Anyone else would have been agape at the bizarre sight before them. The color had been drained out of everything. Some parts of the buildings even looked as though they had been rubbed away with an eraser.

The whole thing looked like some bizarre postmodern art exhibit, and was made all the more baffling by being in the middle of a bleached desert. There were no signs of life anywhere,not even the remains of what had once been alive. It all looked so sterile, especially for ruins. It was the sort of thing you'd only see in dreams. Everyone back on the Border seeing it on their monitors must have thought they were looking at footage from an alien planet.

Mash: ...Let's go in. There might still be something inside.

Earth had changed. It had been completely bleached–a planet now totally devoid of life, with the exception of the Lostbelts.

But even when it had been reset to a blank slate, there were still some places, some buildings, some life-forms that had survived.

Chaldea decided to call these “remnants. ” Today was the first contact they had with these sorts of remnants–these buildings that had been left behind on this newly blank Earth.

Despite the new director's pessimistic outlook, the other staff couldn't ignore the possibility, however slight, that there might still be other survivors. But even though they never did find any other people,their investigation wasn't for nothing.

Because they did find signs of life. Signs that someone had survived all this, and had been here before them. Here, near the Scandinavian Lostbelt, in what used to be Helsinki, the capital of Finland... ...were signs in these buildings that someone,somewhere, was still alive.

Signs that someone had been living here for days...weeks...maybe even months. Empty bottles...piles of canned food...The remains of a communication device that someone had clearly spent a great deal of effort trying to repair... There was even something that looked like a doll lying on the floor–a sign that a young child had been among the survivors.

And above all, they found something that had clearly been left behind with intent...

Mash: ...According to this journal, it looks like somebody was here as recently as two days ago.

Mash: The last entry is dated the day before yesterday.

Mash: It looks like there were six survivors at first, but over time, their numbers gradually dwindled, until...

Mash: ......

Mash: In the end, whoever wrote this journal must have been the last one to disappear...Where could they all have gone?

Unfortunately, though whoever wrote the journal had excellent penmanship, it was in a language that Fujimaru could not read. It could have been Finnish, or maybe Swedish...Either way, it may as well have been Greek to Fujimaru.

Mash: “Why did this happen to our planet? Why do these invaders from another world hate humanity so much? ”

If nothing else, those final questions written on the last pages were clear. Why? Why? Why? That is all these people could ask, even as they were wiped away...Almost as though they were being punished for seeking meaning in their crisis.

Mash: ...It's time, Master. Let's head back to the Border.

Mash: We're almost to Sweden now. You should rest up for the coming battles.

As they left the remnants behind,one thought haunted each and every one of them: Nowhere was there so much as a trace of blood,a hint of violence.

...Soon, the Shadow Border will enter the second Lostbelt. Will it be a hellish wasteland inhospitable to life? Or perhaps...

Fujimaru 1: So that's what those storm walls look like from the outside...

Da Vinci: Yup. Finally about to take the plunge into the Scandinavian Lostbelt. And not because we have no other choice, like with Russia. This time we choose to do it ourselves.

Da Vinci: As you all saw, there's a Tree of Emptiness here as well. Though at this distance, it looks more like a faint pillar of light than a tree.

Goredolf: Y-yes, quite so. We may not know what it's like on the inside, but we do know exactly what we need to do.

Goredolf: This is a Lostbelt, a place carved out of a history different from our own. There is no telling what horrors may await us there...

Goredolf: ...but once we cut down that Tree of Emptiness thingamabob, the Lostbelt will return to its original state, and the storm wall will disappear.

Da Vinci: Yup! But I think we should put this particular Tree of Emptiness investigation off until later.

Da Vinci: Our priority is to slip through Scandinavia and get to the Wandering Sea. Depending on what it's like in there, we might be able to just ignore the Lostbelt.

Da Vinci: If we're going to invade this place, we should do so after we've improved our offensive options at the Wandering Sea.

Da Vinci: It won't do for Fujimaru and Mash to be the only two ever risking their necks on the front lines.

Goredolf: Hmph. I just hope that transmission really was from the Wandering Sea.

Goredolf: So, what now? I thought those storm walls were impenetrable.

Holmes: That, we can penetrate using the Shadow Border's primary function.

Holmes: That storm is approximately two kilometers wide,so we will cross it via a Zero Sail.

Goredolf: Huh? You mean we're going to dive back into Void Space? C-come now, surely I'm not the only one who was wildly uncomfortable seeing his soul leave his body, was I?

Goredolf: I mean, is it just me, or is looking down at your own body in third person a TRULY unsettling experience?

Fujimaru 1: One thousand percent seconded.

Goredolf: Right? If I'd known this was on the agenda,I would've had a much lighter breakfast!

Fujimaru 2: You're just going to have to deal, Goredolf.

Goredolf: You're kidding me. You mean you're completely fine with it? Doesn't it bother you, having a bird's-eye view of your own life?

Meunière: Oh for...Of course it makes us all feel sick. But you're the commander now, yeah? So freakin' suck it up, would you?

Meunière: Honestly, I've gotten used to it. I mean, a short hop through Void Space is nothing compared to a Rayshift.

Meunière: (Not that I've ever Rayshifted myself, of course! )

Goredolf: Grrr. Now don't you start talking back to me,Meunière...! R-Rayshift shmayshift!

Goredolf: Clearly, the Zero Sail program that began under my new administration is a far more impressive achievement!

Goredolf: Holmes! Da Vinci! Prepare the Shadow Border for takeoff!

Holmes: Indeed, Goredolf. I, for one,am truly inspired after your little speech.

Holmes: (And well done on your part, Mr. Meunière. That will be one less thing to worry about during our dive! )

Da Vinci: Okay, places, everyone! Time to strap in for today's out-of-body experience!

Da Vinci: The good news is, we're not going to dive as deeply as we did last time.

Da Vinci: We're just going to skim under the surface, so to speak, so that we stick to Reality Space time and distance as closely as possible.

Da Vinci: We have to do it like that, since we don't have anything tying us to Scandinavia. It'll be like a split-second dive into a two-dimensional plane.

Da Vinci: Think of it like going scuba diving without an oxygen tank. We just need to hold our breath for a little bit while we make our way through the wall.

Da Vinci: All set, Fujimaru? You do know we'll be setting foot in another brand new world soon, right?

Fujimaru 1: ...I'm well aware!

Fujimaru 2: Let's go where no man has gone before...again!

Da Vinci: ...Got it. Okay then, let's go see what's on the other side of this wall!

Da Vinci: Expanding Void-Reality Observation Device: Paper Moon! Destination: southern Sweden, near Norrköping!

Da Vinci: Expanding Logic Formula on Shadow Border's external armor. Removing existence verification for Reality Space.

Da Vinci: Future prediction: hypothetically prove mirror world plane in twenty seconds. Relaxing space-time friction decompression for 0. 4 seconds.

Da Vinci: All systems are green. Void Space may be a calm sea,but as always, don't forget to watch out for big waves!

Da Vinci: Shadow Border, untether from reality. Void Space Dive, Zero Sail: unfurl!

Section 1: Assault of the Demonic Sword (Beginning)

Narration: ...I've always hated Sundays.

Narration: Is it because I hate my father? No. Is it because I hate my mother? No, it's not that either.

Narration: When I was little, I wholeheartedly embraced their dreams for me. I really thought everything they talked about would come true.

Narration: I didn't need to hate them. I didn't even need much in the way of parental love from them.

Narration: I believed that I would one day reach the Sixth Imaginary Element, just as they wanted.

Narration: I would be the one to make my family's long-held dream come true. I had gained the power I needed to accomplish that.

Narration: But even so, I hated Sundays. Detested them, even.

Narration: I loathed having to spend all day Sunday at home–the home I grew up in–with my parents.

Narration: From the time I woke up until the time I went to bed, it felt as though that giant ceiling was crushing me to death.

Narration: I don't hate my parents. I respect them. I'm proud of them. That much has never changed.

Narration: So, then...

Narration: ...what did I hate about Sundays...?


P. A. System Report from the computer room. Report from the computer room.

Da Vinci: So far, this Zero Sail is looking just peachy. Just kick back and enjoy this little voyage through the Sea of Time.

Da Vinci: We've got one hundred and fifty kilometers to cross. At our current reduced speed, I think it should take us about an hour or so?

Goredolf: ......

Fou: Fou?

Da Vinci: Uh-oh, somebody's not happy about this trip. What happened to all that bluster you were spouting just a little while ago?

Da Vinci: I know this is only our second voyage, but you should be used to this by now. Am I wrong, Goredolf?

Goredolf: Hm? O-oh, yes, did you need something,Technical Advisor? Is it teatime already?

Fujimaru 1:

Meunière: It'd be better to wait until we're back in reality for that. Assuming we end up somewhere peaceful when we cross the storm wall, that is.

Meunière: Given how bad Russia was, this area around Scandinavia might be an even worse kind of hell.

Goredolf: Stop saying stuff like that, Menial–I mean Meunière! It can't possibly be worse than Russia! I refuse to believe otherwise!

Fujimaru 2: Something you're worried about, Commander?

Goredolf: Hmph, of course not. I wouldn't waste time on foolish sentiment.

Goredolf: ...I thought I would feel better after we defeated the Servant who destroyed Chaldea, but...I don't. At all.

Goredolf: My poor Four Flush...They were the finest private army I ever had. They may have been a bunch of thugs and hoodlums, but they did their job damn well.

Goredolf: After this whole mess is sorted out, I'll need to pay out their life insurance...once I can scrape together more than a penny to my name, of course.

Goredolf: That said...This way of getting around really is beyond the pale. I'm a man of the land, not the sea.

Goredolf: Not that I'd hesitate to board a submarine to save humanity, of course...

Goredolf: ...but this? I may be better about seasickness now, but I don't think I'll ever get used to this Zero Sail nonsense.

Da Vinci: Hmm. So you still feel bad even though you're not seasick? Are you claustrophobic or something?

Fou: Fou. Fou, fou.

Goredolf: No, I'm not claustrophobic! I mean that I don't care for this Void Space business. It's not something I'm just going to get used to!

Goredolf: Let me be clear: getting used to danger means losing sight of security.

Goredolf: Oversights. Betrayals. Bankruptcy. Victories getting revoked by judges. All those sorts of retribution stem from carelessness and arrogance.

Goredolf: You can't assume everything will be sunshine and roses just because things happened to go your way once!

Goredolf: Not to mention, verifying the existence of Void Space may be a great feat, I'll admit, but be honest: You still don't have a clue what it even is, do you?

Fujimaru 1: Well...No, not really.

Fujimaru 2: Um...Why're you looking at me?

Goredolf: I make it a rule never to get on any machine I can't drive myself. And yet...

Goredolf: (Gulp)...Void Space is something only a tiny handful of mages have ever so much as touched...

Goredolf: Just thinking about floating around in there makes me–Oh no, I think I'm about to be sick...

Holmes: You say that, and yet your complexion tells me that you're feeling just fine,Goredolf–no, Mr. Goredolf. I admire your gumption.

Holmes: The rest of the staff are equally versed in science and magecraft, but you, Director, are a mage's mage.

Holmes: That is why traveling through Void Space puts you so ill at ease. You are keenly aware of both the benefits and risks posed by the Zero Sail.

Holmes: Yet despite that, you are doing your utmost to remain calm and collected. That is truly keeping a stiff upper lip, as they say. Commendable.

Holmes: You must have hit rock bottom quite a few times in your life. Perhaps you're accustomed to being in dire predicaments at this point?

Goredolf: I-I-I'm accustomed to nothing of the sort! I've never once crossed the finish line in last place, I'll have you know!

Mash: Crossed the finish line in last place...? I've never heard an expression like that before, Director Goredolf.

Goredolf: W-well of course you haven't. Once you get to be a man of my caliber, Ms. Mash, even the expressions you use take on a special life of their own.

Mash: (...! That's the first time he's ever addressed me respectfully...! )

Fujimaru 1: That's Holmes's way of complimenting you, Director.

Mash: I think so too. Mr. Holmes only ever speaks about what he is certain of, after all.

Meunière: Haha, you got that right! That's a hell of a nice way to put it, Mash!

Goredolf: O-oh? I see. So that's what that was about?

Goredolf: If you both say so, you may be right...

Fou: Fou fou.

Fujimaru 2: Holmes could use some work when it comes to paying someone a compliment...

Goredolf: That was a compliment? Good grief,Heroic Spirits certainly are...erm, different.

Goredolf: Then again, he might be easier to talk to as an administrative advisor if he were a Caster...

Holmes: Hahaha, I very much doubt that. My Spirit Origin may change, but I'm quite sure I would remain the same.

Holmes: If you require proof, I was a Caster when I first met [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru...

Holmes: ...and even now that I have made an official contract with Chaldea as a Ruler, nothing has changed.

Holmes: Wouldn't you agree, Ms. Kyrielight?

Mash: Now that you mention it...that's true. I don't think you've changed at all, Mr. Holmes.

Goredolf: Hmm. Well, all right then.

Goredolf: Ahem. By the way, Technical Advisor,what's our itinerary for this voyage look like?

Mash: Huh?

Mash: Um, Director Goredolf, Da Vinci just briefed us about that right after we arrived in Void Space...

Fujimaru 1: (...Hang on. )

Fujimaru 2: (Maybe he blacked out after we started the Zero Sail...? )

Mash: Oh.

Mash: I-I'm so sorry, Mr. Goredolf. We had no idea you had lost consciousness with your eyes op–

Goredolf: Wh-what? C-come now, don't be absurd. I've handled the g-forces from accelerating to over two hundred and fifty kilometers per hour, I'll have you know!

Goredolf: I-I say, what about you, youngster? Yes, you, Fujimaru.

Goredolf: Your file said you frequently fall into REM sleep. I believe it even said you could do it standing up, if I'm not mistaken. Is that some special skill of yours?

Mash: “hat's right. We call it the "Fujimaru REM REM. ”

Goredolf: Huh? No way...I was just kidding about the skill part. Are you people...all right?

Goredolf: A-at any rate, it seems you doze off just as easily as I do.

Goredolf: Do you remember what the briefing was about? Perhaps now would be a good time to review all that you know while we are at it.

Mash: Y-yes, that's a good point. I'm sorry.

Mash: Oh, but as for Senpai, I think [♂ he /♀ she] went off to have lunch with Fou after we left on the Zero Sail...

Holmes: Hahahaha. You heard the man, Da Vinci. Would you be so kind as to summarize our current situation for him?

Da Vinci: Sure, if that's what he wants. Okay, let's go over our immediate itinerary again.

Da Vinci: We've just entered the Scandinavian Peninsula, right around here. At the moment, we're still “diving” through the storm wall.

Da Vinci: On our current route, we should then emerge here in northern Europe, at the southern part of Sweden.

Da Vinci: It's only a ten-kilometer trip, but since we don't have any connection to Scandinavia, surfacing at our intended destination will come down to a combination of a dice roll and my navigational genius.

Da Vinci: And since I've got my hands full making sure our coordinates don't go fluctuating all over, we have no way of knowing if there will be any hostile entities on the other side.

Da Vinci: So be ready for an even rougher emergence than the one we went through in Russia.

Goredolf: Hmm, so in other words, entering one of these Lostbelts inevitably comes down to the luck of the draw, eh.

Goredolf: Just to make doubly sure, is there any way we could ignore the Scandinavian Lostbelt and head straight to the North Sea?

Goredolf: Certain conditions need to be in place for us to emerge inside a Lostbelt, right? Then why go out of our way to do that?

Goredolf: Even if we don't know the Wandering Sea's exact coordinates, if we can just get to the North S–

Da Vinci: I know, but I'm afraid that's just not possible. We're currently skimming riiight next to the border between Reality Space and Void Space.

Da Vinci: It's the only way we can peek into reality from Void Space, which we have to do if we're going to emerge somewhere we lack a connection to.

Da Vinci: In addition, the amount of power the Shadow Border consumes in this mode is directly affected by the amount of real-world distance we travel.

Da Vinci: I mean, it would have to be,given that we're following reality so closely.

Da Vinci: And at our current power levels, there's no way the Border can Zero Sail more than three hundred kilometers near the mirror world plane.

Da Vinci: So we have to emerge in the Scandinavian Lostbelt if we're going to stock up for the journey to the Wandering Sea.

Goredolf: ...I see. This Zero Sail business sounds good on paper, but it certainly has more than its share of drawbacks, doesn't it...

Da Vinci:

Basically. If we want to go diving and emerging wherever we like...

Goredolf: Yes?

Da Vinci:

Well, we can't. Neither the Border nor myself are up to that, at least not right now. Sorry, Gordy.

Goredolf: Grr, sorry and sixpence won't even get you a decent cup of tea these days! Fine, you're saying you want a real lab with full facilities, right!?

Goredolf: Once we make our way through Scandinavia and meet up with the Wandering Sea, then things should improve at least a little, yes?

Da Vinci:

You got it! I'm glad you're such a quick study. So, as I was saying earlier, just kick back and enjoy the last bit of our voyage.

Da Vinci:

We're currently off from real-world time by about ten days. We'll emerge from Void Space as soon as we're through the storm wall.

Mash: ...So it's just like what happened in Russia. Then, that would mean one of those enormous trees really is here in Scandinavia, too...

Holmes: Indeed. We could see it for ourselves before we began our journey through the storm wall.

Holmes: If we just so happen to emerge near the Tree of Emptiness, we will need to choose between leaving Scandinavia behind, or investigating the tree.

Holmes: Regardless, we'll no doubt need to make our way across a considerable bit of land once we reach the inside of this Lostbelt.

Holmes: I encourage you all to remain calm and in control so that we may better react to whatever awaits us.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Fujimaru 2: (I wonder if this Lostbelt will be anything like Russia's...)

Holmes: Although...When the Russian Tree of Emptiness came crashing down, it did so in a rather indecipherable–

Goredolf: Wh-what was that!?

Fujimaru 1: Why were those radar beeps so loud?

Fujimaru 2: Is something coming towards us...?

Meunière: Something's pinging our omnidirectional sonar! What the? There's something with a fixed wavelength moving around!?

Holmes: Something with a fixed wavelength...Do you mean there's something else here besides the Shadow Border?

Goredolf: Wait, what? Hold on. Just...hold on! Y-you mean to tell me there's something alive out there? In Void Space!?

Fou: Fou fou...!

Holmes: Indeed. Under normal circumstances, nothing could possibly exist in Void Space, unless it were itself composed of void. There are exceptions, though...

Holmes: Namely, the All-Terrain Void-Transporter Shadow Border,its crew, and the Paper Moon.

Holmes: And that can only mean...

Mash: There's someone or something else that can travel via Zero Sail...?

Holmes: If there were, it would require technology that surpasses Atlas's. I wish I could say that were entirely impossible, but we can't rule it out...

Holmes: Da Vinci, are you seeing anything on your end? Your eyes should be a good deal sharper than ours.

Da Vinci: I'm sorry, but I've got my hands full keeping track of the real world's terrain. I can't spare any cameras to see what might be near us.

Da Vinci: Oh, but I have noticed one thing that's strange: the Shadow Border's been running reeeally smoothly for a while now.

Da Vinci: So there's definitely something out there in our vicinity. I just couldn't tell you what it is.

Da Vinci: The Border's also got magecraft and spirit radars in addition to the sonar, but they're not turning anything up either.

Da Vinci: Since I can't imagine there could be anything living in Void Space, I'm guessing it's using soliton-like wave conduction, but...

Goredolf: We...We...We...

Mash: Director Goredolf...?

Goredolf: We're under attack!!!

Meunière: Oh for...! Who was it that was saying the old man had gotten used to this stuff?

Goredolf: It must be some sort of monster or Servant with the ability to Zero Sail! They could be anywhere!

Holmes: Hmm, yes, that's a distinct possibility. Rasputin mentioned something along those lines too.

Holmes: As I recall, he said that while he was unable to freely move between Lostbelts, Koyanskaya could do so.

Holmes: It's difficult to imagine she employs the same method that we do, but she may well have her own means of crossing dimensions.

Goredolf: There, you see!?

Goredolf: You all saw Ivan the Terrible for yourselves! These Lostbelts are obviously full of monsters!

Goredolf: It wouldn't surprise me at all if one of them was a Rider with just that sort of skill!

Meunière: Do you even hear yourself!? This is VOID Space! This whole dimension shouldn't even exist! There's no way there could be anything here besides the Border!

Holmes: (...A creature or Heroic Spirit with the ability to conduct a Zero Sail, hmm. )

Holmes: (I know Ms. Miyamoto wanders between parallel worlds...but only in that she tumbles from one to another. )

Holmes: (She's only a drifter who keeps falling through realities because all other possibilities have abandoned her. )

Holmes: (There is no being in all of Reality Space besides us who can freely travel between dimensions. )

Holmes: (That, at least, was what Atlas Institute's Trismegistus said as of 2018...)

Holmes: Still, it's not something we can rule out entirely.

Holmes: That we are here ourselves means it must be possible for someone else to be as well.

Meunière: Couldn't you have kept that to yourself, Holmes!? You're just gonna work the old man up even more!

Fou: Fou?

Goredolf: Did it just get even closer!?

Mash: Please calm down, Director. I, um...I know this may not help put your mind at ease, but...

Mash: ...I think I sense something. Something close...

Fujimaru 1: What is it?

Fujimaru 2: Is it something we've seen before?

Mash: No...I don't think so. But, strangely enough, I also don't think that whatever it is malicious...

Mash: In fact, I might even be kind of warm and comforting...

Goredolf: Oh come now! That's standard demon operating procedure! They bait their hook with kindness!

Goredolf: Well, I'm not falling for it! I'm going to listen to my own instincts!

Goredolf: Listen up, all of you! I have no desire to become an adventure-crazed nut like the rest of you, but even I can see that making an emergency exit out of Void Space is our best option here!

Goredolf: Therefore, as the director of Chaldea, I am ordering the Shadow Border to make an immediate emergency exit into Reality Space!

Mash: An emergency exit...!?

Da Vinci: Hmm...I want to take Mash's side here,but I have to admit Goredolf has a point.

Da Vinci: One thing's for sure: there's something out there that even I can't see. We shouldn't take that lightly.

Da Vinci: So my vote is for the emergency exit. And as luck would have it, we're very close to the end of the storm wall.

Da Vinci: That said, there's one thing I want to go over first.

Da Vinci: We've already crossed the border. We're currently in what used to be southern Sweden, somewhere inside the Scandinavian Lostbelt.

Da Vinci: But when we emerge, the risks will be even greater than they were back in Russia.

Da Vinci: Cutting out the future predictions in order to force our way back to reality could result in the entire Shadow Border coming apart.

Da Vinci: And it's not just the Border. All of you could end up seriously hurt as well.

Da Vinci: If your selves from ten days ago happen to overlap with your selves from now, just having your bodies catch up with their own regulatory functions will be enough to make you vomit.

Da Vinci: Are you okay if that ends up happening? Of course, as this vehicle's central processing unit, I'll be doing my best to avoid that.

Goredolf: O-of course! At this point a little nausea is nothing! Just get us the hell out of here, Da Vinci!

Goredolf: I don't want to spend another second with this unknown...thing if I can help it!

Goredolf: I'm responsible for all of your lives here! A-as such, I refuse to continue a voyage in such close proximity to an unknown entity!

Goredolf: Get the Shadow Border to the surface right now! Don't make me repeat myself again. Just hurry!

Da Vinci: All righty☆ If you're ready to face the music,I'll do my best to make sure it's a pleasant tune!

Da Vinci: Meunière, I'm going to switch over to manual. We don't want the safety functions putting on the brakes on autopilot.

Meunière: Are you serious!? Doesn't that completely go against the manufacturer's recommendation!?

Da Vinci: Initiating high-speed calculations. Preparing to emerge in–

Goredolf: Aaah! An emergency alert!? Everyone, strap in! Take deep breaths while you still can!

Da Vinci: Don't worry about that alert. We're just putting a little more strain on the hull than it's designed for!

Mash: Isn't that incredibly dangerous...!?

Fujimaru 1: Don't worry.

Mash: R-right!

Fujimaru 2: Da Vinci knows what she's doing.

Mash: Right...You're right. I believe in her, Senpai.

Da Vinci: Phew. I really didn't want to resort to this, since it gives me a bad fever. This new, smaller body just isn't as resilient as my old one.

Holmes: I'll do whatever I can to help. Patch me in to the console, if you would.

Mash: I'll help too!

Holmes: Thank you. I'm afraid I am relegated to learning by observation myself, but the more hands the better. If only Mr. Babbage were here to assist us.

Da Vinci: I hear you. But I'm afraid the Spirit Origin briefcase alone just isn't enough to summon him outside of short battles. We'll just have to make do.

Da Vinci: Man, wouldn't it be great if another Salieri dropped into our laps right now? Like,!

Da Vinci: ...Damn, it didn't work. Ah, well, worth a shot. Guess we're on our own after all! All right then, let's do this thing!

P. A. System Activating Paper Moon. Initiating planet navigational chart plus/minus convergence. Commencing Shadow Border's docking sequence into reality boundary.

P. A. System Disengaging mirror world plane voyage...Though the stratum may dissolve, I continue to exist. Reapplying timeflow attraction from Reality Space.

P. A. System 0. 4 second difference between target coordinates and current recognition, confirmed! That's well within tolerances, so we are good to gooo!

Mash: Khh...!

P. A. System Emerging from Void Space. Thirty seconds until arrival at Reality Space.

P. A. System Zero Sail, complete. Emerging into Reality Space.


P. A. System The Ortinax exoskeleton is operating within expected parameters. Internal pressure regulation, combustion, and weaponry are all good to go.

P. A. System Armored Shielder is cleared to deploy. Well? Feeling up to this, Mash?

Mash: Yes. All of my readings and transformations are working well. Although...

Da Vinci: What's up?

Mash: I thought you'd be ejecting me again,but this chamber and model both seem very different.

Da Vinci: Well sure. Last time, we were sending you into the thick of an ongoing battle, but this time, we're just having you check out our surroundings.

Da Vinci: Besides, Master's coming along with you,and we can't go shooting you both out, can we?

Mash: Ah.

Mash: Right...Good point. I forgot that Senpai will be joining me...

Da Vinci: All right, let's try this again. Are you all set?

Mash: Yes.... Armored Shielder, ready to deploy.

Da Vinci: You got it. Shadow Border, open the hatch! We are go for our recon mission!

Mash: ...Senpai.

Fujimaru 1: How are you feeling, Mash?

Mash: Don't worry, I'm feeling fine. And the Ortinax is in great shape, too.

Mash: Da Vinci really is a genius. Even after all that intense fighting we did in Russia, it's still in perfect working order.

Mash: Thanks to that, I should be able to use all of my power at any time.

Fujimaru 2: Aren't you cold?

Mash: No, not a bit.

Mash: I know we can see our breath out here, like this...(Blows) But that's the worst of it. Don't worry, I'm fine.

Mash: My cold-resistant gear helps a lot. Besides, it's not as bad here as it was in Russia. It does make sense that Scandinavia would still be freezing, though.

Mash: All that aside, this place is very...snowy, isn't it, Senpai?

Mash: It's three degrees Celsius, but the wind isn't cold at all, and the air feels crisp and clean.

Mash: It feels like a real winter wonderland compared to Russia!

Mash: I'm sure the temperature will drop to well below zero once night falls, but right now, I'm just enjoying how peaceful it is...

Fujimaru 1: Same. This place would get a lot of tourists if it existed in our history.

Fujimaru 2: It's really...romantic...

Mash: I agree. I was just thinking the same thing.

Mash: We still don't know exactly what this Lostbelt is like, but at least this place seems quite peaceful.

Mash: It's enough to make me hope that maybe...not every Lostbelt is dangerous.

Mash: ...But this really isn't the time to wax philosophical. Let's get started, Master.

Fujimaru 1: All right, it's perimeter check time!

Mash: Right! Let's start by looking for some sort of hill, so we can get a better view of our surroundings!

Fujimaru 2: Just make sure to stay close to the Border.

Mash: The Border is recharging for now while it stays camouflaged in the snow.

Mash: Da Vinci said it would take about three hours for it to charge up completely, so let's do our best to explore as much as we can in that time!

Mash: Okay, we've reached the top of that hill.... !

Mash: It's nothing but snowy fields as far as I can see...And then there's...Senpai, look!

Mash: Look at that...

Mash: It's a white mountain range stretching on forever...And I think...they're made of ice and snow...?

Mash: There's some sort of blue haze to the north,about halfway along the range. Wait, is that...

Fujimaru 1: Flames.

Fujimaru 2: The mountains are burning.

Mash: Yes. There's fire burning in the parts without trees!

Mash: I can't see such a thing happening naturally,so it must be some sort of magecraft at work.

Mash: So that's what this Lostbelt is...A world of mountains, white ice, and blue flame...

Mash: And then there's the...sun? It's much too big to be the sun, though...

Mash: This doesn't add up. I've heard parts of Scandinavia can get almost no sunlight for months at a time...

Mash: ...but I've never seen anything about the sun being this size. I doubt any such records even exist.

Fujimaru 1: The sun, huh...

Mash: ......

Mash: ...And another thing. I don't see the Tree of Emptiness anywhere.

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Fujimaru 2: But, we saw it before we went into the storm...

Mash: Mmm. It was clearly visible from outside the Lostbelt.

Mash: I can't imagine it was suddenly wiped from existence,so maybe it's being hidden with magecraft...

Holmes: Well done on the reconnaissance, you two. We've finally had a moment to catch our breath here.

Mash: Holmes!

Holmes: It seems you're about five hundred meters away. Well chosen.

Holmes: That's just about the perfect distance, since we're still unable to detect hostile entities.

Holmes: Thankfully, our emergency exit didn't strain the Border as much as we anticipated, but I'm afraid it's still not going anywhere for the time being.

Holmes: Still, we cannot afford to waste any time, which is of course why we sent the pair of you out to investigate.

Holmes: ...A land of fire and ice, hm? It seems that this Lostbelt will present its own challenges, as I feared.

Fujimaru 1: ...That's all we can see from here.

Holmes: Thank you just the same. We have a faint visual here as well.

Holmes: The sun does indeed appear to be far larger than is normal...But it should be tens of billions of years before it reaches this size.

Holmes: We still don't understand how drastically a Lostbelt can change its environment, but if this one has transformed our sun into a red giant...

Holmes: Were that the case, forget the ice and snow. The whole world would be a scorched desert.

Holmes: Ms. Kyrielight may be able to survive such an environment, but [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru most assuredly would not.

Mash: Yes. Which means...that may not actually be our sun.

Holmes: So it may well be something that looks like the sun, but in fact is not. Hmm...

Holmes: I don't recall anything along those lines in Scandinavian or Germanic folklore, but I'll take another look just in case.

Fujimaru 1: ...What about the fire?

Holmes: I have a theory about that.

Holmes: First, take a closer look.

Fujimaru 2: Those flames don't look like your typical forest fire.

Holmes: That would be because they aren't. Take a look.

Holmes: Nothing is actually burning. I'm not sure how it works, but the fire appears to be something entirely separate and floating above the mountains.

Holmes: Mysterious, to be sure, but there is little cause to doubt this phenomenon is the result of some form of magecraft.

Holmes: Whatever it is, it must be the work of a Crypter or a Lostbelt Servant. That, I can say for certain.

Fujimaru 1: Assuming it's a Lostbelt Servant...

Fujimaru 2: What could their True Name be?

Mash: M-Mr. Holmes really hit the nail on the head, Senpai!

Mash: Well, of course he did. He's famous for always finding the truth of any situation right away!

Mash: And of course, for captivating readers with his brilliant and elegant deductions!

Holmes: Hahaha. Thank you, Ms. Kyrielight. Though I must admit it is a touch embarrassing to be so effusively praised for the novelizations of my cases.

Holmes: But...perhaps that's not so bad every once in a while.

Holmes: I am not usually one to skip right to the conclusion, but yes, I am quite certain that the one who created those flames is–

Holmes: Hm? What is it? Do calm yourself, Fou.

Fou: Fou fou, kyuuu!!!

Mash: Fou? What is it? Is something wro–

Mash: ...!

Mash: Master, get behind me!

Mash: ...!

Mash: We've just discovered an enormous...humanoid creature...!

Enormous Creature:1-light

Holmes: An enormous humanoid creature, you say!? I see. That is...troubling. Most troubling indeed.

Mash: He appears to be about five meters tall! His arms are also very long, and he's wearing some sort of mask!

Mash: I think he's speaking a language of some kind, but...

Enormous Creature:2-light

Mash: ...I can't make out what he's saying! It sounds more like an animal howling than any language I know of...

Mash: ......

Mash: Uh...H-hello? Bonjour? Guten Tag? ...Ni hao? Konnichiwa?

Mash: Please listen to me. We are not your enemy. We don't mean you any harm.

Mash: We...are–

Mash: ...!!!

Fujimaru 1: It's no use, Mash!

Fujimaru 2: He doesn't understand!

Mash: ...Master. I'm afraid he's coming right for us.

Mash: He's about to attack!

Fujimaru 1: Get ready to fight!

Fujimaru 2: I'll back you up!

Mash: ...Understood. Moving to intercept the hostile!


Mash: ...(Huff, huff)......!

Mash: ...The battle is over. We've neutralized the threat.

Fujimaru 1: Mash, you're looking really tired...

Fujimaru 2: Why don't we head back to the Border?

Mash: ...Thank you for your concern, Master...but I'm all right.

Mash: The sudden attack just had me a little out of breath is all. It's nothing to worry about.

Mash: All my vital signs are fine. I'm still good to go.

Holmes: I'm doing my best to analyze the recording and battle data now, this point, I can only say that the creature you fought is like nothing we've seen.

Holmes: Neither a Heroic Spirit, nor a Demonic Beast.

Holmes: He was simply an enormous humanoid creature native to Scandinavia. One that could not possibly exist in the twenty-first century.

Mash: ...A giant...

Fujimaru 1: Did you say...a giant?

Mash: ...Yes...

Fujimaru 2: As in mythical giants?

Holmes: Correct. I'm pleased you're already familiar with them.

Mash: I read that...a number of powerful giants used to live in Scandinavia.

Mash: Of course, this was all a long time ago.

Mash: In the modern era, there have barely been any giant sightings in Sweden, Denmark, or Norway.

Mash: I believe most of them were during the Age of Gods...back when the old Mystics still existed.

Mash: I'm sure there are some exceptions, but even so,to encounter one out of nowhere like this...

Holmes: Both Goredolf and Mr. Meunière are in something of a tizzy about this impossible encounter, but yes, in the year 2020, giants have long since ceased to exist.

Holmes: And yet, you've obviously just met one. Albeit one that tried to kill you even after you attempted to communicate with him, but still.

Mash: ...

Mash: I caught a glimpse of his eyes behind the mask and he seemed...consumed by bloodlust.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Holmes: So in this version of Scandinavia, creatures from the Age of Gods still live. That is most troubling. I had considered the possibility, but I didn't think it would prove to be true so soon.

Holmes: Damn you, Crypters! Damn you for throwing something like this at us in only the second Lostbelt! Have you no sense of restraint!?

Holmes: That said, we are far from completely helpless. Ms. Kyrielight. [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru.

Holmes: To begin, I've updated our database with everything I could determine about this creature.

Holmes: We were unable to detect it from the Border because Chaldea had no information about ancient giants.

Holmes: Furthermore, I also learned something rather unexpected about the ice and snow surrounding us...

Mash: What about them...?

Holmes: They are imbued with a faint magical energy. The trace is so minute that only an expert mage would even be able to detect it at all!

Holmes: This small amount of magical energy created enough interference in our equipment that we were unable to detect the giant's approach.

Holmes: Da Vinci is still quite upset about it. She says being plugged in to function as a bio unit dulls her senses.

Holmes: Nonetheless, I'll do my best to update our data immediately. I'm also sending an update for the Ortinax's firmware.

Mash: R-right. Confirming update now–

Mash: Master!

Mash: I'm picking up new hostiles in our periphery...! There's at least, several ice beasts traveling alongside another giant!

Fujimaru 1: We need to get out before we're surrounded!

Fujimaru 2: Let's make a break for the Border, Mash!

Mash: Understood!

Mash: I can see them up ahead! Master!

Fujimaru 1: Time to fight, then!


Mash: That should wrap things up for now.

Mash: We've defeated another giant and several ice beasts.

Mash: I no longer detect any hostiles or magical energy signals in our vicinity.

Mash: Ah...

Mash: Wait. You're right, Mr. Holmes. I can sense faint magical energy around us...Coming from the snow...

Fujimaru 1: Maybe it's a Lostbelt Servant that can control snow?

Mash: I'm not sure, but that certainly seems possible.

Fujimaru 2: Could a giant be controlling the snow?

Mash: Good question. I don't recall any giant like that from Norse mythology offhand...

B:Da Vinci: Let's hash that stuff out later, you two. For now, you should hurry back to the Border!

B:Da Vinci: Holmes, from now on, maybe start waiting until people are in a safe location before you start with your long-winded explanations?

B:Da Vinci: There's no guarantee there aren't other giants still lying in wait out there. Both of you, get your butts back here! And be careful!

B:Da Vinci: Anyway, great job collecting all this data right after we emerged! This should be a big help!

Da Vinci: Oh good, you're back. Welcome home, you two!

Mash: It's good to be back. The Ortinax is working wonderfully. Thank you again for that.

Da Vinci: Glad to hear it!

Da Vinci: Goredolf's having a little rest; said he was having a nervous breakdown or something. I guess the emergency exit WAS pretty hard on him.

Meunière: Guess all that worrying he did about scouting out our surroundings after we emerged was for nothing...

Da Vinci: I wouldn't say that. He's trying to keep us safe, in his own way.

Da Vinci: Naturally, his primary concern is his own survival, but that's still an important part of being a leader.

Da Vinci: When things get dangerous, you snap to attention. When things get dicey, you get right the hell out.

Da Vinci: That's how things are supposed to go, but the further removed the higher-ups get from the action, the softer they get when it comes to making those calls.

Da Vinci: So in that sense, Director Goredolf is exceedingly good at his job.

Da Vinci: I'm not sure why, but he seems to treat any danger his field operatives are in as danger to his own life.

Da Vinci: I wonder what that's all about. Maybe he had a really strict tutor growing up or something.

Da Vinci: You know, like someone teaching him to think about war from the perspective of the people he's sending out onto the battlefield?

Meunière: Oh, yeah...I see what you mean. That would definitely explain some things.

Meunière: Now that you mention it, he always looked like he was in a lot of pain whenever Fujimaru was in a tight spot back in Russia. Talk about empathy.

Meunière: No wonder he was always kicking up such a fuss...

Da Vinci: At any rate.

Da Vinci: Make sure you write up the recon findings in a nice report template when you hand it off to him, if you don't mind. That oughta be more than enough to keep ol' Gordy in the loop.

Da Vinci: On a different note...You guys really had a rough time out there, didn't you, hm?

Mash: ...Yes, we did.

Da Vinci: Giants are beings from the Age of Gods. Not even mages have seen more than the occasional fossil of them.

Da Vinci: Any survivors in areas where Mystics were still in full force were probably seen as threats, and taken out by the heroes of their respective ages.

Da Vinci: They're certainly not something you'd run into every day!

Da Vinci: I mean, you guys didn't see hide nor hair of them in any of the seven eras you Rayshifted to, right? Not even in the actual Age of Gods.

Da Vinci: And now we just happen to run into not one,but two, in modern-day Scandinavia!?

Holmes: I believe those giants you encountered were Jötnar–members of the Jötunn race of giants.

Holmes: In the Age of Gods,the Norse world was composed of nine realms.

Holmes: One such realm was Muspelheim, the land of flame. Another was Niflheim, the land of ice, through which an icy river of poison flowed.

Holmes: When these two realms collided, the poisonous frost melted. Then, when it was exposed to Muspelheim's heat, grew into a tremendous giant.

Holmes: This was Ymir,said to be the ancestor of all Norse giants.

Holmes: The race of giants that went on to spring forth from Ymir's body were called Jötunn, the frost giants.

Holmes: These giants were truly beings belonging to the era when gods walked the earth.

Holmes: At times, the Jötnar would mix with the Norse gods, giving birth to new gods and giants alike.

Holmes: It's said that the surviving Jötnar eventually fell out of mythology and went on to become trolls...

Holmes: ...but what you two saw today were no trolls. They were most definitely Jötnar.

Da Vinci: ......

Mash: ......

Fou: Fooou...

Fujimaru 1: You sure sound certain.

Fujimaru 2: Do you know a lot about giants, Holmes?

Holmes: Hahaha. Well, I am Sherlock Holmes, you realize.

Holmes: I am the one who finds the truth, regardless of my Spirit Origin. I believe I said as much when I introduced myself.

Holmes: ...No, sorry, I'm just having you on a bit. You see, the Paper Moon is not the only thing I picked up while I was visiting the Atlas Institute.

Mash: Tri-Hermes!

Holmes: Precisely. While there, I came in contact with the Pseudo-Spiritron Calculation Engine, Tri-Hermes. When I did so, I happened to peruse some secret medical data pertaining to giants.

Fujimaru 1: Hmm.

Fujimaru 2: Now I see. Holmes, you rascal!

Holmes: Hahaha.

Meunière: I don't see what's so funny...?

Da Vinci: Don't you “hahaha” me, buster. You're supposed to tell me these things before I need to know them!

Da Vinci: It's not fair that you get to do all the fun exposition! Besides, we're a team. You know we should be pooling our knowledge and stuff!

Holmes: I shall take that under advisement, especially considering it comes from none other than the great Leonardo da Vinci herself.

Holmes: All that said...I could certainly use a bit more information myself.

Holmes: Is this simply a Norse Lostbelt where a once-lost race of giants still runs amok? No, I very much doubt that is all there is to it.

Da Vinci: Right. The ones you saw today were powerful beings of Mystics, but...

Mash: ...But they were still living creatures.

Mash: If nothing else, I can say for sure that the beings we encountered weren't Servants.

Holmes: Correct. They were indeed absolutely not Servants.

Holmes: Based on what we know from Russia, we can assume there is a being here who rules over this Lostbelt, and a Crypter who tends to the Tree of Emptiness.

Holmes: While our primary concern is with the latter, there remains a strong possibility that we will come into conflict with the former as well.

Holmes: That said, our goal this time does not include engaging them in battle. Our intent is to cross Scandinavia without them ever knowing we were here.

Da Vinci: Yup, exactly. Still, we should really take a little break first, don't you think?

Da Vinci: Thankfully, there's a lot more magical energy concentrated here than there was in Russia, so the Border shouldn't have any problem recharging.

Da Vinci: We'll set off again in a little while,so make sure you two rest up while you can.

Da Vinci: Hiking across snowy mountains does a real number on your legs and back, you know? I very much recommend getting those kinks ironed out while you can.

Mash: Right. Oh, but first, I almost forgot. Mr. Holmes!

Holmes: Yes, Ms. Kyrielight?

Mash: I'm sorry, but, back when we had just looked over the mountain range, remember how you and Senpai were talking?

Mash: At the time, there was something else we wanted to ask about...

Fujimaru 1: Oh, right!

Fujimaru 2: What's the deal with that fire we saw?

Mash: Yes! The strange fire that kept burning without spreading! Do you know what it is, Mr. Holmes?

Holmes: I can't say I know for certain. I only have a hypothesis, albeit one in which I am quite confident.

Holmes: I suppose that would make this more of an induction than a deduction. At any rate, yes, that fire is none other than–

Mash: Another alert...!?

Fou: Fou, fou! Fooou!

Meunière: What the hell? Are our sensors busted!? Crap, no, it's worse. They're working perfectly!

Meunière: Fujimaru! Holmes! A freakin' enormous magical energy signal just popped up near us out of nowhere!

Meunière: It's like a Magical Reactor Core! This monster's on par with the Angrboda powered by the Greater Grail we saw in London...!

Section 2: Assault of the Demonic Sword (End)

Meunière: Dammit, we had no warning whatsoever! The thing just appeared out of nowhere!

Holmes: It's most likely a Servant. They may have been using their spirit form.

Mash: Ah! That's true. A Servant could sneak up like that!

Mash: Mr. Meunière, is that Servant from Proper Human History!? Or maybe...

Meunière: Well, their Spirit Origin's pattern matches what's registered in Chaldea, but their...color seems like it might be a little different...?

Meunière: Sorry, I don't know! All I can say for sure is that they're hostile!

Meunière: At least if that massively powerful curse packed into the magical energy they've got aimed right at us is anything to go by, they are!

Da Vinci: A Lostbelt Servant...!

Holmes: The Border's spirit radar is one of the most sensitive in the world. If it failed to detect this Servant until now, then they are probably getting some help with their Presence Concealment.

Holmes: Had they wished to do so, I have no doubt they could have gotten much, much closer.

Holmes: And yet, they instead chose to release their spirit form right in front of us, making their presence known.

Holmes: ...They must be incredibly confident...or perhaps incredibly cruel. Mr. Meunière, can you put them up on the monitor?

Meunière: No, I can't! They're right in our blind spot!

Meunière: And how the hell can you all be so calm about this, anyway!? I mean, I know we can't exactly put the Border's pedal to the metal right now, but still!

Meunière: What do we do!? Do we tell the rest of the staff about this!? Most of them are still on break!

Meunière: For that matter, don't you think we should get going already, Da Vinci!?

Holmes: Not just yet. This Servant may still be trying to figure out where we are.

Holmes: No doubt they are aware we are nearby, but I believe they are unable to determine our exact location.

Holmes: ...That said, the longer we stay, the greater our chances of being discovered. As good as the Border's camouflage is, it does not render us invisible.

Da Vinci: It is good at keeping its magical energy hidden, but that doesn't help if someone starts searching the old-fashioned way.

Da Vinci: Well, Holmes, Fujimaru,what do you want to do?

Da Vinci: Do we keep quiet and hope they don't find us?

Fujimaru 1: ...No. We shouldn't just wait around.

Fujimaru 2: ...Whoever they are, we can't let them into the Border.

Holmes: Indeed not. Allowing an intruder on board would be the worst possible scenario by far.

Holmes: None of the staff are fighters, after all. The moment an enemy gets inside is the moment our little adventure comes to an abrupt end.

Holmes: Mr. Meunière, what is the latest on our mysterious foe? Have they moved at all since appearing?

Meunière: N-no, they haven't moved a muscle since they showed up...But I still can't see anything on the monitor. They're right in the middle of our blind spot.

Holmes: Then it would seem they're waiting to see how we react. Bold, yet with a touch of caution.

Holmes: Da Vinci, I'd like you to start up the Border's engine the moment we step outside. Make sure it is ready to depart at any time.

Da Vinci: You got it. But, make sure you buy us enough time for it to warm up, okay?

Holmes: I am well aware. Now then, shall we be on our way,Ms. Kyrielight and [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru?

Holmes: Given that we are the only ones here capable of fighting,it must fall to us to greet any hostile or boorish guests.

Mash: Right. I've got my exoskeleton ready to go, so I can activate it at a moment's notice. As long as it's just for a few minutes, I should be able to fight!

Fujimaru 1: I'm all set too!

Mash: Senpai...

Goredolf: We make an emergency dive!

Goredolf: I will NOT have you going out to face an unknown and extremely powerful foe! I absolutely forbid it!

Goredolf: An emergency dive is the only viable option!

Mash: Director Goredolf!? You're awake now!?

Goredolf: Of course I'm awake! And I overheard your entire conversation!

Goredolf: A situation like this calls for a retreat, not meeting the enemy on their own terms! Traversing this Lostbelt to make a getaway is out of the question as well!

Goredolf: If the enemy has found us out, then our first order of business is to hide again! And that means a Zero Sail!

Goredolf: They'll never find us once we dive back into Void Space! We can make a clean getaway!

Da Vinci: ...That's true. If safety is our top priority, that's definitely an option.

Da Vinci: We'd have to figure out how to get back to reality once we set sail, but it would give us a secure way out of this particular predicament.

Da Vinci: That said, are you sure about this? We still haven't finished reapplying the Logic Formula.

Da Vinci: There's a nonzero chance that our armor just comes off in Void Space and we end up adrift there forever.

Da Vinci: Let's see, I'd say the odds of that happening are maybe 0. 003 percent?

Goredolf: That's nothing! I've never even come close to winning a race in my own vehicle with odds like that!

Goredolf: At any rate, given that our only Master is still unable to summon Servants, fighting one this powerful is out of the question!

Goredolf: Need I remind you of the sort of enemies we faced back in Russia!?

Goredolf: These Lostbelt Servants are tremendously powerful...I learned that lesson all too well when one of them destroyed Chaldea.

Goredolf: Just because the girl is able to fight now doesn't mean you should run to battle at every chance you get.

Goredolf: As your commander, AND your director, I will support whatever option I feel offers the best chance of survival, no matter how slight the difference!

Goredolf: No, in fact, this is an order! As my advisors,it's YOUR job to justify my decisions, not MINE!

Goredolf: And let's not forget our biggest concern here: we don't even know who this mysterious, probably-Lostbelt Servant even is!

Goredolf: In which case, the only option I will even consider is for us to make our escape!

Da Vinci: You never waver when it comes to keeping us all alive, huh. All right, I'll trust your instincts here.

Da Vinci: Sorry, Holmes. Sorry, Fujimaru.

Da Vinci: The Servant outside is so strong that I'm taking this ship back to Void Space.

Da Vinci: I'm not saying you wouldn't survive the encounter with whoever it is out there...Just that it'd get real ugly, real fast.

Da Vinci: And if the fight ended up damaging the Border as well, that'd be bad news for all of us.

Meunière: So we're doing another Zero Sail!?

Meunière: Still...If that means Mash and Fujimaru can avoid this fight, I guess it is for the best...

Da Vinci: Right. You take the wheel, Meunière. I'm gonna head back to the computer room and plug in to the Border.

Da Vinci: Director, Holmes, I'm leaving this place in your hands while I go verify our existences as perfectly as ever☆

Fujimaru 1: So, uh, change of plans, I guess?

Fujimaru 2: Guess I'd better buckle up?

Mash: Right. I'll go along with whatever you decide, Senpai...!

Goredolf: Aaargh, here we go again! Has it ever once even occurred to you to obey your commander!?

Meunière: Hey, at least now we're all discussing our opinions. That's a big step-up from how things were before. You should be proud for inspiring this change, boss man!

Fou: Fou fooou!

Goredolf: Hmph, I can tell you're just buttering me up, Meunière. At any rate, let's get this Zero Sail started before that Servant makes a move!

P. A. System ...Okay, I'm patched in and all synced up. Expanding Void-Reality Observation Device: Paper Moon.

Goredolf: All hands, be seated! And need I remind you,do not forget your seat belts!

Fou: Fou, fou fooou!

P. A. System Expanding Logic Formula on Shadow Border's external armor. Expansion is currently at ninety percent...ninety-three percent...

P. A. System Ninety-eight percent...There! Now we just dive in and make up the rest as we go along!

P. A. System Removing existence verification for Reality Space. Shortened future prediction: hypothetically prove mirror world plane in ten seconds.

P. A. System Relaxing space-time friction decompression for 0. 9 seconds.

P. A. System ...Good, looks like we made it just in time. Holmes!

Holmes: Let me take over the wheel, Mr. Meunière. In the meantime, would you be so kind as to keep your eyes on the sensors?

Meunière: You got it!

P. A. System Shadow Border, untether from reality. Void Space Dive, Zero Sail: unfurl!

Mash: ...!

Mash: Senpai, I...I still have sensation in my extremities,and I can still feel normal gravity!

Fujimaru 1: Does this mean the Zero Sail failed!?

Fujimaru 2: It feels like something dragged us up...

Goredolf: Wh-what's going on? This isn't Void Space! Did we fail to dive? Are we still stuck in reality!?

P. A. System ...They got us good. Whoever's out there sensed our spells going off and caught us in a split second.

P. A. System They're physically holding us back. I'm impressed. Just their physical strength exceeds the Border's maximum output!

Mash: Did you say...physical strength...?

Meunière: The magical energy signal is getting stronger! W-wait, hang on...The Servant's literally grabbed hold of the Border!

Goredolf: Wh-wh-what the!?

Mash: Are we floating...?

Holmes: Do not remove your seat belts! All hands, assume crash positions!

Fou: Fou, fou fou, fou! Kyau kyaaau!

Goredolf: U-ungh...What happened...? I don't understand...Ugh, so dizzy...Is everyone all right...?

Mash: Are you hurt, Senpai!?

Fujimaru 1: I'm fine.

Fujimaru 2: Just a little dizzy.

Mash: Thank goodness...

Fujimaru 1: They just picked us up...

Fujimaru 2: Did a barrel roll and crash?

Mash: Y-yes. I felt the same thing.

Mash: It was as though the Shadow Border was picked up,and then flung somewhere far away...

Holmes: That is precisely what happened. The hostile Servant stopped our Zero Sail in its tracks before simply tossing us like a baseball.

Holmes: That is truly incredible strength. Perhaps they're a Berserker? Whatever their class, they clearly possess immense strength to perform such a feat.

Holmes: I expect they are a rather combat-oriented Servant, probably one focusing on being on the front lines, but–

P. A. System Attention, please. I'm afraid that crash completely shut down all our navigation systems.

P. A. System I can try to bypass the damaged systems, but even that's going to take some time. And then there's all the damage to the suspension.

P. A. System Luckily we didn't end up completely upside down, but we're still not going anywhere anytime soon.

P. A. System I'm sorry, everyone. We can't dive or run away on land anymore.

Holmes: You have nothing to apologize for, Da Vinci. The fault lies with our uninvited guest, not you.

Goredolf: Th-th-th-then you mean we're out of options? This is bad! Really, really bad!

Meunière: You're damn right it is! Magical energy signal incoming! I can tell this Heroic Spirit is some kind of big shot...

Meunière: ...and I'm pretty sure they're done waiting around,since they're headed straight for us!

Meunière: One hundred meters...Fifty meters...Dammit, now they're right on top of us!

Fou: Fooou, kyuuu!!!

Meunière: The magical energy signature that I'm pretty sure is a Servant has collided with our exterior! It's melting our external armor now!

Meunière: What kind of barbarian are they? It sounds like they're trying to cut their way through our defenses!

P. A. System Do they realize how much time I spent reinforcing this armor...? There's no way anything should be able to break through it this easily...

P. A. System I–I mean, the old me spent a ton of time making sure of that! What kind of weapon or Noble Phantasm do they have that could possibly do this!?

Mash: ...Senpai.

Fujimaru 1: Right.

Fujimaru 2: Let's go, Mash!

Goredolf: H-hold it, you two...! Don't you think you should wait a bit and see what's happening before you–

Meunière: We don't have time to wait and see anymore! I'm sorry, but it's all up to you two now!

P. A. System Holmes, you go with them, too! But watch out. That Servant's magical energy is right up there with Ivan's!

P. A. System Make sure you don't hold anything back,or you might not be coming back at all. Got it?

Holmes: ...I am well aware. I saw their Spirit Origin for myself earlier.

Holmes: If nothing else, I can promise this: I will keep [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru alive.

Holmes: In the meantime, Da Vinci, please focus on keeping yourself and the Border safe, and getting us up and running as quickly as possible.

Mash: I've opened the hatch! I can confirm the hostile Servant is on the Border's port side!

Fujimaru 1: That's enough...!

Fujimaru 2: Step away from there right now!

Masked Heroic Spirit: ...Well now. So that unsightly slab is this thing's door, then?

Holmes: (Is that a Lostbelt Servant...? But then, what is this ominous feeling I sense from their Spirit Origin...!? )

Masked Heroic Spirit: So, a human and two Heroic Spirits.

Masked Heroic Spirit: No, wait. Neither of you are pure Heroic Spirits,are you? You've both got something else mixed in.

Masked Heroic Spirit: Hehe. Hybrids, then. Interesting.

Mash: The hostile Servant is closing in!

Holmes: Now I see. You certainly do appear to be a powerful Heroic Spirit.

Holmes: The Border's external armor is one thing, but to think you even cut your way down to the multilayered Bounded Fields surrounding the inner hull...

Holmes: Back at Chaldea, Da Vinci, Nitocris, and Paracelsus all worked to ensure those Bounded Fields would be as strong as any from the Age of Gods.

Holmes: They should have been as strong as a fortress made of divine iron...yet you cut through them like so much butter, and without even revealing your True Name.

Holmes: ...Fascinating.

Holmes: Tell me, how did such a powerful demonic sword possibly come to be?

Masked Heroic Spirit: ......

Mash: (Are his eyes glowing red...? )

Holmes: Ah, I was right. It is a demonic sword, then. I thought it seemed far too dark to be a sacred sword.

Masked Heroic Spirit: ...I don't talk to humans.

Mash: ...!

Masked Heroic Spirit: Well now.

Mash: Khh...!

Mash: (He hits so hard...! And he's still only using that short sword at his waist! )

Mash: (This must be the incredible strength that let him pick the Border up and just throw it...)

Masked Heroic Spirit: ...

Mash: ...You're not getting past me.

Fujimaru 1: Mash!

Mash: I...I'm all right! I can do this!

Fujimaru 2: I couldn't even see him swing his sword...

Holmes: Oh? Well, that's because he didn't–not his longsword, anyway. He's still using that short one.

Holmes: That's how I barely managed to make it out, and only just. He is truly an incredible master swordsman.

Holmes: If only Ms. Miyamoto were here right now...

Holmes: I'm afraid those were little more than jabs as far as he was concerned, Ms. Kyrielight. Though I am certain that is not how it felt to you.

Mash: ...

Masked Heroic Spirit: Hmm. Have you lost your mind, girl?

Mash: !

Masked Heroic Spirit: Why are you still standing there? You should be throwing down that impenetrable shield of yours and running for all your worth by now.

Masked Heroic Spirit: ...You don't look like enough of an idiot to fail to see how outmatched you are.

Mash: ......

Mash: ...I will endure, if I have to. I can't let everything end here.

Fou: Fou, faaau! Fau fou fou!

Mash: Fou!? Not again...!

Mash: You shouldn't be here! You need to get back inside the Border!

Mash: And, thank you...for worrying about me...

Mash: That Servant is truly, incredibly strong. Much stronger than me and the Ortinax.

Mash: Something about him reminds me of another hero...Another Heroic Spirit we've met.

Mash: I don't know if I can beat him,even with Holmes's help, but still...

Mash: ...that doesn't matter. Even if I'm not strong enough, I can't back down.

Mash: This journey isn't ours alone...Not anymore...

Mash: ...Maybe it never was.

Mash: Just because I may not be up to the task in front of me now doesn't mean I can give up on the journey as a whole...!

Fujimaru 1: (Steel yourself)

Fou: Fou, fou...!

Masked Heroic Spirit: A journey, huh.

Masked Heroic Spirit: Frankly, I don't care where it is you're going. I have my own destination in mind.

Masked Heroic Spirit: I'm afraid this just isn't your lucky day, girl. Or yours, kid. Now that our paths have crossed...

Masked Heroic Spirit: ...I'm going to kill you,and take your prized treasure with me.

Mash: Another short sword...!!

Holmes: Here he comes! I'll back you up as well!


Mash: ...Thank you, Holmes! That beam was a big help!

Holmes: No trouble at all, Ms. Kyrielight. Hrn! ...I must say though, you certainly don't hold back!

Holmes: Not to say that you are not pulling your punches quite a bit, Lostbelt Servant. I don't suppose you would be so kind as to introduce yourself?

G:Masked Heroic Spirit: ...

Holmes: Yes, I see. Now that I've seen your strength up close, some things have become abundantly clear.

Holmes: Your swordsmanship is exquisite–surely the finest in the Norse lands.

Holmes: You are also immensely strong, and have both the knowledge and reflexes to dodge my magical energy beam with ease.

Holmes: You knew, didn't you? You knew I was a Heroic Spirit capable of using magecraft attacks. Your wisdom alone is truly a force to be reckoned with.

Holmes: Which means...

Holmes: must be the one who slew the evil dragon and consumed his knowledge. Am I wrong?

G:Masked Heroic Spirit: Oh?

Holmes: You are the child of Sigmund, king of Francia,and Hjördís, daughter of King Eylimi.

Holmes: Even among other peerless heroes who stand head and shoulders above ordinary people in strength, intelligence, and all other aspects...

Holmes: were hailed as the greatest warrior-king of them all.

Holmes: A phenomenal swordsman who reforged your father's demonic sword–the one he earned after overcoming Odin's trial of Barnstokkr.

Mash: don't mean...!

Holmes: You are the fearsome warrior who defeated King Hunding's army, thereby avenging King Sigmund.

Holmes: You are the brave hero who single-handedly slew Fafnir, the evil dragon, consumed by greed, who horded his riches in the caves of Gnitaheiðar.

Holmes: You are the one who made a loyal friend out of Sleipnir's foal, Grani, who would gladly carry you to the ends of the earth.

Holmes: You are the great hero who ate the dragon's heart, gaining unimaginable power and the wisdom of the gods!

Holmes: Your True Name is Sigurd! You stand alongside Siegfried as one of the most powerful heroes of all Norse myth!

Mash: The Dragon Slayer...!

Holmes: However, that raises a number of questions...A true legend you may be, but that doesn't explain where your Monstrous Strength comes from.

Holmes: More importantly...Why do your eyes glow red?

Sigurd: ...Heh.

Sigurd: So you're a clever one on the side of Proper Human History, hm? Now what, then?

Sigurd: Now that you know who you're up against,how do you intend to fight him?

Mash: Sigurd...The great hero of Norse legend...

Mash: ...After seeing how fast, sharp, and heavy his blades are,I'm convinced. And those are just his short swords.

Mash: He still hasn't swung what I believe to be his true blade,the demonic sword Gram, even once...

Fujimaru 1: That long, red sword...

Fujimaru 2: I thought I saw him swing it at least once or twice...

Holmes: Ah, yes, I suppose it would have seemed that way. But I'm afraid, bluntly...he was doing no more than casually parrying our attacks.

Holmes: He has yet to use it offensively. We still have not seen what it's truly capable of!

Sigurd: Enough of your yapping.

Mash: Khh...!

Fujimaru 1: This pressure is intense!

Fujimaru 2: No...this isn't over yet!

Mash: Nnn...Aaaaaahhh...!

Sigurd: A temporary power-up spell? Hmph.

Sigurd: Out of my way.

Mash: Look out! He's going to use Gram...!

Sigurd: Die, human.

Holmes: Oh, no you don't! [♂ He /♀ She] may be human, but I'm a Heroic Spirit! One, I might add, who has seen more than his fair share of combat!

Holmes: My apologies, but I can't have you using Gram so close to the Border!

Holmes: ...Yah!

Sigurd: Shut up.

Holmes: Guh!

Sigurd: ...Guess you so-called Heroic Spirits are more fragile than I thought.

Mash: Holmes!

Mash: Senpai...Sen...pai...! Holmes's right arm is...gone...!

Fujimaru 1: Keep calm, Mash.

Mash: R...right...

Mash: You're right, Senpai!

Fujimaru 2: Don't worry. I won't let Holmes die!

Mash: ...Thank you, Senpai!

Fou: Fou, faaau! Kyaaau!

Sigurd: ......

Holmes: ...Go after him. Leave me here.

Mash: Senpai!

Fujimaru 1: I'll use a Mystic Code to heal him!

Fujimaru 2: Emergency heal!

Mash: Holmes!? Why did you stop [♂ him /♀ her]!? Please, stay still so Senpai can–

Holmes: ...Don't. Please. Save as much of your magical energy as you can.

Holmes: Gram most certainly lives up to its reputation,but as you can see, my heart and brain are fine.

Holmes: I may be badly injured, but my Spirit Core is intact. I'm still a Heroic Spirit, remember. It will take a deal more than that to finish me.

Holmes: ...Phew.

Fou: Fou fou! Kyau!

Holmes: I can't very well fail to do my part after your rousing speech, Ms. Kyrielight. Never mind me; you need to go after him.

Holmes: Remember, he said he was going to take something. Something that lies inside the Shadow Border.

Holmes: That must be why he attacked us. Whatever it is he's after, we cannot let him have it.

Holmes: ...Elementary, My Dear...Ms. Kyrielight.

Mash: This light...This is...your Noble Phantasm...

Holmes: Precisely. As you are aware, it should provide both you and [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru with a significant boost in strength.

Holmes: It may not be quite at full capacity, but it should still be rather potent for anyone attempting to fight in a desperate situation, such as yourselves.

Holmes: ...In my estimation,Sigurd appears to be a frightfully unnatural being.

Mash: Unnatural?

Holmes: I'm certain he isn't yet fully acclimated. There's a chance you may still be able to defeat him...

Fujimaru 1: Acclimated? What do you mean?

Fujimaru 2: Please, Holmes, just be straight with us for once!

Holmes: I'm sorry. It's rather hard to explain while I'm sober.

Holmes: I'm afraid...I'm having difficulty putting my order...(Cough)

Mash: Holmes!

Mash: ...Vital signs confirmed. He's lost a lot of magical energy, but aside from that, it's just like he said.

Mash: His Spirit Core is still intact, Senpai.

Fujimaru 1: ...Come on! We've got to stop Sigurd!

Mash: Right!

Holmes: ......

Holmes: Hm...? I must have passed out...

Holmes: Good, they're gone...Phew...

Holmes: I see. So this is what a blow from a demonic sword feels like. How truly excruciating.

Holmes: Perhaps it is exacerbated by the fact that I've never experienced such a deep wound before.

Holmes: ......

Holmes: ...So, this is the sort of pain you smiled through, eh, Yelena?

Da Vinci: Who's that?

Da Vinci: So you are still thinking clearly. Now I feel silly for ever worrying about you.

Da Vinci: Just sit tight, Holmes. Someone'll come by to help you out just as soon as I finish evacuating everyone from the rear hatch.

Da Vinci: We might not be able to use the Border's facilities right now, but we should be able to replenish your magical energy. Just hang in there a little longer.

Da Vinci: At least we know from your battle that this hostile Servant isn't here to destroy the Border.

Da Vinci: If we're lucky, he'll leave it mostly intact. So just hold tight for a bit, 'kay?

Holmes: Understood. That said...I'm afraid mental fortitude can only do so much here. To be honest, I'm in real danger of disappearing.

Holmes: I'm afraid he inscribed a death rune into me, you see. One wrong move, and that will be it for me.

Da Vinci: A death rune!? But, there aren't any runes that can kill a Heroic Spir–

Da Vinci: No, wait. I forgot about the Primordial Runes! The ones Odin created that served as a magecraft foundation in the Age of Gods! Then, you mean–

Holmes: I do indeed. You saw our battle for yourself. Sigurd learned a number of runes from the Allfather's daughter.

Holmes: He must have inscribed it the moment he cut off my right arm. It would seem he truly has it out for me.

Holmes: ...(Exhale)

Holmes: So I'm afraid if I push myself too hard, my Spirit Core will fail. Happily, I can at least speak as long as I remain still...though the pain is still...quite exquisite.

Da Vinci: Gosh! Then you really are just hanging by a thread! Okay, wait a second! I'll be right there!

Holmes: Hm...Right...

Holmes: ...There's so much I need to tell you, but...Hmm...I'm afraid I keep slipping in and out of consciousness.

Holmes: I'm finding it difficult to concentrate, and...haha, for some reason, my thoughts keep turning to the past.

Da Vinci: Holmes!

Holmes: Da Vinci, would you give Mr. Goredolf a message for me? Tell him to stay put, no matter what is taken.

Holmes: I'm certain Sigurd has no personal interest in humans or Heroic Spirits...

Holmes: After all...he's...

Holmes: ...


Mash: I've caught up to the target!

Mash: He's still somewhere inside the Border...He appears to be headed for the cockpit!

Fujimaru 1: Holmes's Noble Phantasm is still active!

Fujimaru 2: This is our chance to take Sigurd down!

Mash: Right!

Mash: Huh!? There's nobody here! No signs of a struggle, either. What in the–

Fujimaru 1: It looks like the side hatch is open...?

Fujimaru 2: They must be on the deck!

Meunière: You sure about this, old man!? If you give him that, we'll be–!

Goredolf: Stop that! Shut your mouth before he kills us all! We don't have any other choice! Trust me!

Goredolf: Here! This is the Paper Moon you said you were looking for! Go on, take it!

Goredolf: Normally, we'd keep it hidden, but you're so strong that I decided to give it to you as a reward!

Sigurd: ...I'm surprised. You humans are seldom so intelligent.

Sigurd: Still, I didn't think you'd give it up so easily. I heard this thing was your lifeline.

Goredolf: I-i-it may be our lifeline, but you are a threat to our actual lives! That thing certainly won't help fill our bellies!

Goredolf: N-now go on, you got what you came here for, didn't you? You don't have any further business with us, right? Right?

Goredolf: Without the Paper Moon, we're just helpless drifters. At this point, it's only a matter of time until we die on our own!

Goredolf: There's no reason for you to sully your hands with the blood of insignificant specks like us, is there? S-so why not just be on your way then!?

Sigurd: ...You've got a point. This sword wasn't made for cutting up useless meat.

Goredolf: (Yes! I made it out alive again! )

Fujimaru 1: Hold it right there!

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

Mash: Right! You need to give us back that compass right now, Sigurd!

Goredolf: (Nooo! Things were going so well! Have you gone mad,picking a fight with the scary knife guy!? )

Sigurd: ...Oh?

Sigurd: The human and the hybrid, huh. Do you still not see how outclassed you are?

Sigurd: Ah, I see. So you got a little boost from the Heroic Spirit who doesn't know when he's beaten.

Sigurd: ...Fine, I suppose you're worth killing. You two obviously don't know when to quit either.

Sigurd: All right. It wouldn't hurt to put this body through its paces a little more, anyway.

Sigurd: ...Give me your best shot. I'll humor you and take this at least halfway seriously.

Mash: You better believe we will. We're not backing down until you leave our ship, one way or another.

Sigurd: Heh. Now you're telling me to leave, hm?

Sigurd: All right, then tell me your names. I hear that's what human heroes are supposed to do.

Mash: ...I'm Mash Kyrielight.

Fujimaru 1: And I'm Fujimaru!

Sigurd: Got it. I'll probably forget them shortly.

Mash: Fine with us.

Mash: ...Come on, Master. Let's get our Paper Moon back from Sigurd!

Sigurd: Conceit. Overconfidence. Arrogance. Pride.

Sigurd: You humans never change. Heh. You're just like the gods.

Mash: (Gods...? )

Mash: Call us whatever you want. You may even be right.

Mash: But, be that as it may...neither Senpai nor I will back down!

Mash: This time, we've got Holmes cheering us on!

Mash: ...Sigurd! If anyone's going to back down here, it will be you!


Mash: Khh...!

Mash: (Here he comes! )

Mash: Ghh...! Haaaaaa!

Fujimaru 1: Using a Command Spell!

Fujimaru 1: Using a Command Spell!

Sigurd: Nn...

Mash: Haaaaaa!!!

Mash: (There! )

Mash: (I got him! )

Mash: (Gasp, gasp, gasp...)Phew...

Mash: ...That blow had all of our magical energy behind it. Both mine and Senpai's. And thanks to Holmes's help, I'm sure it was very powerful.

Mash: It may not have been true baritsu, but I'm certain you felt it anyway. Your Spirit Core should be damaged in several places now.

Sigurd: ......

Mash: ...Please leave, Sigurd.

Sigurd: My Spirit Core, huh? What about it?

Sigurd: What about it?

Fujimaru 1: Mash!

Fujimaru 2: I can't see where he

Mash: Aaagh...!

Mash: Sen...pai...!

Mash: My exoskeleton's drive is failing...I've only got a little magical energy left...Khh...No, not yet...!

Mash: I can't...afford to...fall...yet...! Senpai...Sen...pai...

Fujimaru 1: (Run over to her)

Sigurd: Stop. Don't move.

Sigurd: So...What was that just now? Something only a hybrid could do?

Sigurd: I was pretty surprised to hear you put all your magical energy into that attack. Never thought I'd see a hunter be so chatty before they were about to take down their quarry.

Sigurd: ......

Sigurd: No, that's not right. You're not hunters or heroes. You're probably not warriors, either.

Mash: Senpai...!!!

Mash: Khh...Come on...Move, Ortinax...! Please...

Sigurd: You poor, pathetic children. This is an act of mercy.

Sigurd: Rejoice. I will behead you with the sword of your own beloved hero.

Sigurd: Pitiful humans. Neither you, nor the world,have any future to look forward to.

Mash: No! Stop...! Senpai, please! Use another Command Spell on me...! Senpai...!

Sigurd: Don't bother. You'll be dead long before you get the chance to summon your magical energy.

Sigurd: Farewell.

Fujimaru 1: (Refuse to look away)

Fujimaru: ...

His sword swung through the air,slicing even the wind.

...... ...There was no blood. There was no spray from the neck. No gruesome sounds of meat being cleaved from bone. Fujimaru's head remained attached to [♂ his /♀ her]shoulders. [♂ He /♀ She] was still alive. If the tip of Sigurd's demonic sword had come even a hairsbreadth closer...Fujimaru's life would have ended.

But that didn't happen. The red blade stopped dead in its tracks,right before reaching its mark.

Fujimaru 2: (Close eyes and use a Command Spell)

...Sigurd was right. The sword did come faster than the Command Spell. The sound of the sword slicing through the air rang out... ...but for some reason, that was the only sound.

A second passed, then two...and nothing changed. Fujimaru remained unharmed... ...and somehow still alive.

The red blade had stopped dead in its tracks,right before [♂ his /♀ her] eyes.

Mash: (His sword stopped...mid-swing...)

Mash: Master!

Sigurd: ...Hmph. I guess this is what they call a hero's pride.

Sigurd: You got lucky, child.

Mash: Master!

Mash: Please don't move...! I'm afraid his kick injured me pretty badly...

Mash: So...please, just stay still for now...

Mash: ...Senpai...

Fujimaru 1: Mash...!


Sigurd: I'm back, Ophelia.

Ophelia: ...That was fast.

Ophelia: Did you retrieve the Paper Moon Void-Reality Observation Device that once belonged to the Atlas Institute, as I instructed?

Ophelia: You'd better not have broken it.... Did you?

Sigurd: Hmph. Don't ask me. I can't get used to these man-made toys for the life of me.

Sigurd: You want your little golden treasure so badly,take a look for yourself.

Ophelia: ...Good. This is definitely the real thing.

Ophelia: Why don't you hang on to it for me? Don't let anyone else have it, no matter what.

Ophelia: After all, you're the strongest being in all of Scandinavia, with the exception of Her Majesty.

Sigurd: I'm sure.

Sigurd: that I've fulfilled my duties as a Servant, do I get some kind of reward?

Sigurd: How about it, Master Ophelia Phamrsolone?

Ophelia: ...Well done, Saber, my most powerful knight. I have no other work for you for the time being.

Ophelia: Feel free to rest up and relax for a while. How does that sound as a reward?

Sigurd: Hmm. That works.

Ophelia: Oh, and may I say something?

Sigurd: Sure.

Ophelia: ...Would you mind not staring at me with those red eyes?

Sigurd: Heh. You're a funny one. You think you've got room to talk when it comes to unusual eyes, Ophelia?

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: ...Never mind about me. We have the Paper Moon. Right now, that's all that matters.

Ophelia: The All-Terrain Void-Transporter, Shadow Border...

Ophelia: It may be the only one of its kind in existence, able to do the impossible...but without the Paper Moon serving as its eyes, it's useless.

Ophelia: I commend Chaldea for destroying the Russian Lostbelt, but without the Shadow Border, they can go no further. This is where their journey ends.

Ophelia: Now there is effectively no one left who will interfere with Lord Kirschtaria. Now, all that remains is–

Queen of Ice and Snow: ...Hehe. I'm glad to see you in such high spirits, Ophelia.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Are these high spirits born of true romance, or mere puppy love?

Queen of Ice and Snow: Even after thousands of years of attempting to do so, I cannot quite grasp the concept of love...though I know you humans speak of it often.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Tell me, what does it taste like? Is it sweet? Perhaps spicy, even fiery?

Ophelia: ...Your Majesty.

Sigurd: ......

Queen of Ice and Snow: I never took you for one to smile upon gaining a new toy. I see that even you have a soft side.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Now, what of this...Tree of Emptiness,I believe you called it? How is that faring?

Ophelia: It's coming along well. Even now, it continues to grow larger in its garden, away from any who might observe or interfere.

Ophelia: Since there is no opposing faction in this Scandinavian Lostbelt, there should be nothing to interfere with its growth.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Faction? I must confess I am unfamiliar with that word.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I suppose we do hear the occasional lone wolf howl, but that is of no consequence. If anything, it helps to pass the time.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Still...I suppose if they were to form a pack, that could be somewhat troublesome. Don't you agree, Ophelia?

Ophelia: ...Yes, I do.

Queen of Ice and Snow: My world–my Scandinavia–is a land where peace reigns far and wide. There has never been conflict among its people. Not once.

Queen of Ice and Snow: The wild beasts do devour their prey,of course, but that is as far as it goes.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Pointless conflict is a foreign concept to man and beast is resentment.

Queen of Ice and Snow: The worst that ever happens is a single wolf's howling. Don't you think?

Ophelia: I do. Under your rule, this world of Scandinavia has become one of the great embodiments of peace.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Hehe, the way you say that, Ophelia, it sounds as though there are other worlds that have achieved similar peace. How adorable.

Ophelia: ...Surely you jest.

Ophelia: ...This Lostbelt's stability is of vital importance, Your Majesty.

Ophelia: It is the key to growing our tree. All you need do is continue ruling as you always have.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Hmm.

Queen of Ice and Snow: You truly are a selfless young woman,aren't you, Ophelia Phamrsolone?

Queen of Ice and Snow: I suppose I should commend you for your diligence...but it takes more than that to be a queen.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Do you understand me, Ophelia? If not, I suggest you learn.

Ophelia: With all due respect, Your Majesty, I am no queen.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Haha...

Queen of Ice and Snow: Why did you take it?

Queen of Ice and Snow: My land has no place for avarice. If you would protect and obey me as your queen, you would do well to remember that.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I believe you called it a compass...? I see. So the hospitality of my ice castle is not enough for you.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Surely you haven't forgotten? Every bit of snow and ice blanketing this world is a part of me.

Queen of Ice and Snow: As I preside over all that is pure white, nothing can elude me. I know and see all that takes place within my land.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I can hear it, too. The breath of all living creatures...their cries, their fluttering...

Queen of Ice and Snow: I can hear the howl of the wind, the symphony of leaves overlapping...and, of course, the words of humans.

Queen of Ice and Snow: That goes for the crew of this Shadow Border as well. As I speak, they are erecting a Bounded Field to keep the giants away.

Queen of Ice and Snow: ...How touching. How pitiful.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I see they too are humans. They guard their lives closely, so that they may grow and survive.

Ophelia: ...Saber, didn't I tell you that you were free to kill everyone there except Mash?

Sigurd: I can't tell you humans apart.

Ophelia: Why you...!

Queen of Ice and Snow: Heh...

Queen of Ice and Snow: How delightful. Hehehe. You certainly are blunt, Dragon Slayer.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Nonetheless, Ophelia, it seems you still fail to understand my methods.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Why kill them?

Ophelia: ...With all due respect, Your Majesty: because the Chaldeans who live on in the Shadow Border are our enemies.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Our enemies, hm?

Sigurd: If you want me to kill them all right now,I'll go take care of it.

Ophelia: Don't!

Ophelia: ...I don't want you killing Mash Kyrielight.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Interesting.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I don't believe I've ever seen that look on your face, Ophelia.

Queen of Ice and Snow: You never so much as batted an eye when it came to that Archer, but just now, I could have sworn I saw a look of genuine concern on your face. Interesting.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I take it this Kyrielight person means something to you then. Well, Ophelia Phamrsolone?

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: ...Forgive me, Your Majesty. I cannot answer that question.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Hehe. You truly are adorable, Ophelia. Very well, I shall forgive you this once.

Queen of Ice and Snow: As for you, knight: Do not kill them. I forbid it.

Queen of Ice and Snow: My snow and ice is an expression of my love, not of death. I will not tolerate anyone staining its pure white with crimson.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Is that clear?

Sigurd: ...Hmph.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Love is a wonderful thing.

Queen of Ice and Snow: If you ever come to know it yourselves, take care not to lose it. You must cradle it in your hands, and hold it close, hold it tight.

Queen of Ice and Snow: If you are not careful, loveless flames may throw everything out of balance. That is how it has been since the gods first came to be.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Is that clear, Ophelia? Sir Knight?

Ophelia: Yes, Your Majesty. I will not forget it.

Ophelia: ...

Ophelia: ...Love, huh.

Ophelia: No. No. I won't let what happened to Kadoc happen to me.

Ophelia: I will not fail. I will do everything I can to help Lord Kirschtaria.

Ophelia: I will feed on the other Lostbelts...and make certain I live up to his hopes for me...

Youngest Valkyrie: Feed...

Youngest Valkyrie: You always get that look on your face whenever you speak of the tree, Ophelia.

Youngest Valkyrie: Do you not like it here? Do you feel as though you don't belong...?

Ophelia: Ortlinde.... No, I don't think that.

Ophelia: My mother was Scandinavian, albeit in Proper Human History. This is my homeland, of a sort.

Ophelia: I would never hate it here. Quite the opposite.

Ophelia: I feel as though some part deep inside of me is more at peace than it's been in a long time. Even the air tastes better here.

Ophelia: I love this place.

Ophelia: The queen does keep surprising me with how generous she can be, but I don't mind that either.

Youngest Valkyrie: You love it, you say...?

Ophelia: Yes. I do. I was so glad when I found myself here after my Coffin was opened.

Ophelia: I really mean that.

Ophelia: Which is why I'm proud it's my job as a Crypter to tend to the tree. It's a crucial life-form, a necessary one.

Youngest Valkyrie: Necessary. For this Kirschtaria man, you mean?

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: ...For this Lostbelt. Didn't I already tell you three about it?

Youngest Valkyrie: Yes, you did.

Youngest Valkyrie: I've logged your current statements in my memory. I'll go ahead and link them to our shared memories now.

Youngest Valkyrie: ...I've received a question from Hildr.

Youngest Valkyrie: She wants to know why you always have that bitter look when you talk about the tree if you don't dislike it here.

Ophelia: Bitter?

Ophelia: Well, because...

Ophelia: makes me keenly aware of how powerless I really am.

Ophelia: Even if the tree does grow to maturity, the most I can hope to do is keep it that way. It's very unlikely this world will change unless I use my Sirius Light.

Youngest Valkyrie: You want to change this land, Ophelia?

Ophelia: ...Sometimes. You don't?

Youngest Valkyrie: We can analyze, but we can't make judgment calls. All we can do is follow the orders we're programmed with.

Youngest Valkyrie: Did you forget, Crypter? We aren't human. We only exist to carry out our master's orders.

Ophelia: Yes. I remember.

Youngest Valkyrie: There, again...

Ophelia: Huh?

Youngest Valkyrie: I'm sorry. You had the same look on your face as when you discuss the tree, so I responded the same way Thrúd would, now that our statements have synced up.

Ophelia: I see. Then I'm afraid that, even between the three of you, your analysis must still be incomplete...

Section 3: Lord of Creation (Beginning)

Goredolf: ...A-ahem. Are all present and accounted for?

Goredolf: Then let's get this briefing underway. Technical Advisor?

Da Vinci: You got it. Okay, let's start with a review of our current situation.

Da Vinci: First of all, it's been about twenty hours since yesterday's attack. Thanks to all your valiant efforts, we were able to avoid the worst-case scenario...

Da Vinci: ...but I'm afraid we're still not doing well, all told.

Da Vinci: When Sigurd, whom we believe to be a Lostbelt Servant,broke into the Shadow Border's cockpit yesterday...

Da Vinci: ...he made off with our Void-Reality Observation Device, the Paper Moon.

Goredolf: That's right! Of all the things for him to take!

Meunière: Hey, he didn't exactly steal it from us, did he? You gift wrapped the damn thing for him!

Meunière: Why the hell would you do something like that? Even Sigurd found it weird!

Goredolf: You think I was giving him a present, you fool!? I'll have you know that was me planning ahead!

Goredolf: He didn't look at all like the gentle sort, so I wrapped the Paper Moon carefully to ensure that he wouldn't break or damage it!

Meunière: ...Wait, you did!? Really!?

Da Vinci: All right, all right,you can argue all you want later.

Da Vinci: Between the emergency exit, attempted emergency dive, and Sigurd's attack, the damage to the Shadow Border is...extensive.

Da Vinci: Frankly, it's a miracle that none of us died.

Da Vinci: Although...

Fujimaru 1: How's Holmes doing?

Fujimaru 2: I haven't seen Holmes since all this...

Mash: ...I'm worried, too. I haven't spoken to him since that battle. Is he...

Da Vinci: It's...not good.

Da Vinci: If he pushes himself even a little, he'll die. He has to stay completely still while he recuperates.

Da Vinci: He didn't just lose an arm, you know. He also got inscribed with a Primordial Rune of death.

Mash: A Primordial Rune...

Da Vinci: The lost Norse runes are one of the foundations of magecraft. Mages have partially reproduced them, but they pale in comparison to the original ones from the Age of Gods.

Da Vinci: Still, that doesn't mean they're not handy.

Da Vinci: They can be chanted very quickly, which makes them very useful in a lot of situations.

Da Vinci: For example, we used a whole bunch of them for Fujimaru's Mystic Codes, like Gandr.

Da Vinci: At any rate, the Primordial Runes are powerful stuff.

Da Vinci: According to Norse myth, Odin made most of the world out of Ymir, with the exception of the runes.

Da Vinci: No, the runes were a different matter: Odin discovered them after offering up his own life. Their shapes contain the depths of the world itself.

Da Vinci: I guess you could call them the pathways to truth that Odin discovered.

Da Vinci: If you inscribe the rune for death,then there's no escaping it no matter what...

Da Vinci: ...if you're flesh and blood, that is!

Mash: Flesh and blood...?

Mash: Then, since Holmes is a Heroic Spirit,does that mean he can be cured?

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Da Vinci: You got it! A gold star for you, Mash! I have no idea what you're saying, Fou!

Da Vinci: If you want to lavish me with praise for my genius in putting together a recovery pod for ether bodies on such short notice, you just go right ahead!

Da Vinci: You deserve some thanks too, Fujimaru. I'm sorry you had to try to heal him with your Mystic Codes so many times.

Da Vinci: But it was thanks to you that Holmes didn't disappear before I could finish the recovery pod.

Fujimaru 1: It's fine. Don't worry about that.

Fujimaru 2: Hey, that's what they're there for.

Da Vinci: Well, thanks again. I'm sure he'll want to thank you too once he's back on his feet.

Da Vinci: That said, for the time being, Holmes will essentially be comatose. I know you're anxious, Gordy, but–

Goredolf: That's Mr. Goredolf to you, Technical Advisor! Need I remind you that we are still in a briefing!

Goredolf: And on that note, let's get down to brass tacks.

Goredolf: Mash Kyrielight, Fujimaru, I have decided on a new mission for you. I trust you already know what it is, but I'll explain anyway.

Goredolf: We have lost both the Paper Moon and one of our Heroic Spirits. Well, temporarily in the latter case, at least.

Goredolf: The situation may be dire, but it's not going to improve by us sitting around twiddling our thumbs. Which means–

Da Vinci: The goal of this mission is to turn things around and keep moving forward!

Da Vinci: Oh, sorry, I stole your thunder, didn't I? Teehee!

Da Vinci: What!? I can giggle if I want! All right, moving on!

Da Vinci: This mission has three main objectives: recovering the Paper Moon, cutting down the Tree of Emptiness, and finding a path to the North Sea.

Mash: Um...I understand why we need to get the Paper Moon back, since we can't continue our journey without it...

Mash: ...but why is cutting down the Tree of Emptiness part of this mission too?

Da Vinci: An excellent question. As you'll recall, Sigurd didn't come here to kill us; he came to steal the Paper Moon.

Da Vinci: Why would he do that if he belonged to this Lostbelt? Simply put, he wouldn't. Never in a million years.

Da Vinci: The only ones who would consider the Paper Moon a threat are the Crypters, especially now that they've lost Russia.

Da Vinci: In which case, it makes sense to assume that he is one of the Crypters' Servants.

Mash: Oh...So, this Lostbelt's Crypter already knows we're here, which means–

Meunière: Right, there's no avoiding a fight. And if we're going to have to do that, we might as well take down the Tree of Emptiness while we're at it, yeah?

Goredolf: Correct. Once the Crypter realizes the Tree of Emptiness is in danger, we can be certain they will have some sort of response.

Goredolf: And when they do, that will be the perfect chance for us to take the Paper Moon back. Maybe I'm being a little overly optimistic here, but I'd say this plan is absolutely foolproof!

Fou: Fou, fooou.

Da Vinci: Anyway, there's a ton of work to do before we get to that. First order of business: we need to conduct a thorough investigation of this Lostbelt.

Da Vinci: And since we have to stay here and repair the Border...

Da Vinci: ...I'm afraid that will fall to the two of you again. You okay with that?

Fujimaru 1: W-we're on it.

Fujimaru 2: Just leave it to us.

Mash: Still...I'm a little worried about leaving the Border with Holmes in such critical condition...

Fujimaru 1: What if you get attacked again...?

Da Vinci: I get where you're coming from, but it seems pretty clear that Sigurd was only after the Paper Moon.

Da Vinci: Both Gordy and I figure he'll leave us alone now that he got what he came for.

Meunière: I still don't get why he'd want a Void-Reality Observation Device in the first place.

Da Vinci: Hmm. To slow us down, maybe?

Meunière: Wouldn't it have been faster to just kill us all off and be done with it?

Da Vinci: Well, yeah, that's true. Honestly,that seemed to be what he wanted to do, too.

Da Vinci: But, there's not much point in speculating now.

Fujimaru 2: What about the giants?

Da Vinci: Heh heh heh. Not to worry! I've already got just the thing in mind for handling them!

Meunière: Oh, thank goodness. I'm glad you are as skilled as you are cute...

Da Vinci: Flatterer! Don't stop now! It's about time somebody recognized just how useful I am!

Da Vinci: Anyway, let's start by going over a few things! We need to make sure we're all on the same page for this Lostbelt, after all.

Da Vinci: First things first: the Norse mythology we know from Proper Human History.

Da Vinci: Scandinavia used to be home to all sorts of gods, giants, and other Mystics, just like the Age of Gods in other areas.

Da Vinci: But then in 1000 B. C. , about three thousand years ago,Mt. Katla erupted...and Ragnarök began.

Da Vinci: It brought an end to that entire reality–essentially Scandinavia's own Age of Gods.

Da Vinci: The gods, the giants, even the Phantasmals in the region, along with all their myths and legends, were completely wiped out.

Goredolf: At least, that's the conventional wisdom in the mage community.

Mash: Ragnarök...The Twilight of the Gods...That was the conflict that brought an end to the gods in Norse mythology, right?

Goredolf: That's right. Loki's mischief eventually begat all sorts of disasters, culminating with Muspel fire giants invading from Muspelheim, the land of flame.

Goredolf: In fact, what most believe to have been an enormous eruption from Mount Katla was actually the fire giants' invasion.

Goredolf: It's said that during Ragnarök, Odin was eaten by Fenrir, the great wolf of ruin, and that many gods died in a fearsome clash with the giants...

Goredolf: ...before Surtr, the Fiery King of Giants and ruler of Muspelheim, laid waste to all the land with his flaming sword.

Da Vinci: Yup. And once the gods and giants had vanished from Scandinavia, that was when–

Mash: The Age of Humanity began...That was when most of the Mystic was lost, and civilization rapidly advanced...

Fou: Fou fo. Fou fo, fo fou.

Da Vinci: Basically, yup.

Da Vinci: The idea that the reality texture covering the world disappeared along with Scandinavia's Age of Gods was more of a presumption, courtesy of mages from Proper Human History.

Da Vinci: That does differ a bit from regular historical records, though. The oldest known record we have of Mt. Katla erupting goes back to A. D. 930.

Da Vinci: There just aren't any records of what happened all the way back in 1000 B. C.

Goredolf: That tracks, if the entire texture was wiped out.

Goredolf: Again, conventional wisdom says that we only have bits and pieces left over now because of this entire texture disappearing.

Meunière: You really do love your conventional wisdom,don't you, Director?

Goredolf: Wh-what's wrong with that!? Many notable authorities support that theory! I'm told it's all but common knowledge in the Clock Tower's Archaeology the Meluastea faction, to be precise!

Fou: Fo fou, fou.

Da Vinci: When you get right down to it,there's still a lot we don't know.

Da Vinci: In Proper Human History, we never did get the full picture of the Scandinavian Age of Gods, so all we have are a lot of vague guesses patched together from whatever small remnants we could find.

Da Vinci: ...But hey, that's pretty much the case everywhere!

Goredolf: However, that is obviously not the case for this version of Scandinavia. Not by a damn sight!

Goredolf: I'm guessing that here in this Scandinavian Lostbelt,the Age of Gods never ended!

Fujimaru 1: We have run into giants...

Mash: Yes. As we've seen for ourselves, giants are very much alive and well in this Lostbelt.

Fujimaru 2: Does that mean there are gods here too?

Mash: That would seem to follow...

Da Vinci: Maybe. Maybe not.

Da Vinci: If we are still in the Age of Gods here, then there may well be gods kicking around, too. But at this point, we really can't say for sure.

Da Vinci: One of the big questions we need to answer is, when did this Lostbelt diverge from Proper Human History!

Da Vinci: The other is, given the giants we've run into, we can be certain that it is still before the A. D. era, and that Age of Gods-level Mystics still exist, but we don't yet know why that is.

Da Vinci: So, those are the two big questions: When and why? We should feel a lot better once we have the answers.

Mash: So we want to know the time period this Lostbelt diverged from Proper Human History, and why it happened in the first place.

Da Vinci: Right you are, Mash!

Da Vinci: At this point, I think it could've diverged around three thousand years ago, around the time of Ragnarök in Proper Human History's Scandinavian Age of Gods...

Da Vinci: ...but as to why that happened,your guess is as good as mine.

Da Vinci: Why does this Lostbelt look like this? What are those flames you saw on the northern mountains?

Da Vinci: And based on what we've been able to observe from the Border, why does it look like there aren't any towns or cities, like there were in Proper Human History?

Da Vinci: Are there even any other humans here? If so did they change into something else, like the Yaga?

Mash: ...We really do have a lot of unanswered questions.

Goredolf: ...That's right. We still know practically nothing. The best we have right now is our estimation that the Age of Gods never ended here.

Goredolf: If only a divine being would have the courtesy to show up and tell us what's going on. Hmph! Stupid Lostbelt!

Meunière: I don't know...I can't think of many gods that go in for the whole exposition thing.

Fou: Fou fou.

Da Vinci: Hey, at least you've got the adorable and knowledgeable Da Vinci on your side.

Da Vinci: Let's see, speaking of the situation here...Right, I've still got to tell you about the Scandinavian Tree of Emptiness.

Mash: But, we weren't able to see it...

Da Vinci: I imagine not, particularly since the Border couldn't see it with its sensors either.

Da Vinci: So we should assume that this Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness is being concealed somehow.

Goredolf: Which is why your mission objectives include finding it. Good luck. We're counting on you.

Fujimaru 1: Roger that!

Goredolf: Good. That's what I like to hear. It really raises my hopes for your performance!

Fujimaru 2: And once we find it, we have to cut it down...

Goredolf: But of course. If you see an opportunity to chop it down, go right ahead. No need to wait for my orders in that case.

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Da Vinci: Let's see...Oh, right. And one more thing...

Da Vinci: I really hate to say this,'s not possible to summon Servants outside of battle here.

Mash: !

Fou: Fou!

Fujimaru 1: Because the Border doesn't have enough power...?

Fujimaru 2: Because there aren't any leylines nearby or something?

Da Vinci: Mmm...The Border is running way low on power thanks to all the damage, but the biggest issue is the fact that we couldn't detect any leylines.

Da Vinci: I bet it's because of all the magical energy intertwined with the ice and snow at a molecular level. I'm afraid it's also going to interfere with our long-range comms.

Da Vinci: Alternatively, the ice and snow's magical energy could be completely controlling both this Lostbelt's mana and history.

Mash: So, that would mean...if someone were manipulating the ice and snow via magecraft, then–

Da Vinci: It'd mean they're incredibly powerful. If we wanna keep hypothesizing, I'd guess that if someone like that exists, they're also this Lostbelt's king.

Da Vinci: Of course, it's possible this is just what this Lostbelt is like, but let's at least keep that possibility in mind.

Goredolf: ...Ahem. If I may?

Goredolf: In short, our situation is highly precarious. We have no choice but to send a mere two-person team to explore further, despite the fact that we currently have no means of defending ourselves.

Goredolf: I hope you can appreciate how difficult of a decision this was to reach.

Fujimaru 1: All clear here.

Fujimaru 2: Pretty sure you already said as much earlier?

Goredolf: Hahaha! Good, good! Very well then, as the expedition team, you will leave first thing tomorrow morning, at zero nine hundred!

Da Vinci: While we're on the subject,let's talk about your current destination, too.

Da Vinci: Though we don't know where Sigurd went after stealing the Paper Moon, we did detect a group of life-forms approximately one hundred and fifty kilometers northwest from the Border's current location.

Da Vinci: I'm hoping it's a village, even though there wasn't one there on the 2019 map...

Da Vinci: Aaanyway, I think that'd be a good place to start asking around. I'll make sure to prepare some translation talismans before you leave, of course.

Da Vinci: I wish I could do more to help you two. Under normal circumstances, I'd be right there with you in the Border...

Da Vinci: But this is the best we can do right now. I'm sorry.

Da Vinci: The Shadow Border still needs a lot of repair work to get it mobile again, and of course, Zero Sailing is currently out of the question.

Da Vinci: Still, at least you won't have to worry about the Ortinax. I spent the last twenty hours going over the whole thing with a fine-tooth comb.

Da Vinci: You shouldn't have to worry about it acting up after getting hit with a demonic sword anymore.

Mash: Thank you, Da Vinci. The next time I see him...

Da Vinci: Yup. You give him the what for. Don't hold back on Siegfried's account!

Mash: Yes, you're right. Though I don't think we need to bring Siegfried into this!

Meunière: It sucks that we can't count on our comms...I wish we at least had one more fighter we could send with you.

Da Vinci: Yeah, having another Heroic Spirit around right now would be real welcome. Especially one who could watch over the Border for me!

Goredolf: Oh no you don't! Don't you even think about wasting our last bit of power on a summoning test.

Goredolf: If you've got time to whine about things we haven't got, then get out there and find them! That's the smart way to go about this!

Da Vinci: ...Yeah, you've got a point.

Da Vinci: All right, Mash, Fujimaru.

Da Vinci: We're going to have to count on the two of you to find some help, and maybe even bolster our fighting forces into the bargain.

Mash: Maybe there are other Heroic Spirits from Proper Human History here, like there were in Russia.

Da Vinci: Exactly. With any luck, there'll be Heroic Spirits the land itself summoned here, like Beowulf and Billy.

Da Vinci: All right, let's go over everything one last time.

Da Vinci: ...For this mission,you two have three primary objectives.

Da Vinci: First, take back the Paper Moon. Second, cut down the Tree of Emptiness.

Da Vinci: And third, find a path to the North Sea. Of course, those last two are more for extra credit, but the first one is absolutely crucial!

Da Vinci: So let's get started with that information gathering and, hopefully, recruiting some fighters!

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Fujimaru 2: We won't let this mission fail!

Mash: Right, Senpai!

Fou: Fou! Fo fou!

Goredolf: Very well then, we begin tomorrow morning at zero nine hundred!

Goredolf: Now, if there are no further questions,this briefing is concluded!


Mash: It doesn't look like there'll be any blizzard. Looks like today's forecast for the southern Sweden region of this Lostbelt is clear skies.

Mash: I'm all set, Senpai.

Fujimaru 1: I'm glad it's still sunny out.

Mash: Me too. I think this is a good sign!

Mash: ...Maybe I shouldn't say that,given the situation.

Mash: But, I still want to stay positive.

Da Vinci: True. Getting depressed isn't gonna do anything to help us out of this.

Da Vinci: You've got the right idea, Mash! Here, have a Da Vinci Head Pat, on the house.

Da Vinci: There you go.

Mash: Th-thank you, Da Vinci.

Fujimaru 2: I just hope we don't run into any storms, like last time.

Mash: I doubt we'll see many storms as big as the ones in Russia, but this Lostbelt certainly is extraordinary.

Mash: We'll need to pay close attention in general, not just to the weather, as we go. Especially since we can't count on much in the way of backup this time...

Da Vinci: I know. I really wish there was another Heroic Spirit who could take over for me here...but, since there isn't, we'll just have to make do.

Goredolf: Technical Advisor! How long are you planning to spend saying your goodbyes!? Get back in here already!

Goredolf: Need I remind you, you're the only operational Heroic Spirit we've got right now, and every second you spend away is another second the rest of us are defenseless!

Da Vinci: Aw, what's the matter, Director? Miss them already? Something you want to say to them before they go?

Goredolf: No! I mean, yes!

Goredolf: With the Paper Moon stolen, our position is extremely precarious! Add to that the fact that we have no mobility on land...

Goredolf: ...and we're as good as dead if an enemy happens to find us...Therefore! It is imperative you two complete your mission and return as quickly as possible!

Goredolf: Whatever you do, make sure you don't just rush in and get yourselves hurt...or worse!

Goredolf: We absolutely cannot afford to lose any more of our human–or Servant–resources!

Goredolf: Really, we can't afford to lose anything else,given the state of things...Anyway, your first order of business is getting the Paper Moon back. The second is returning here safely. Now get on with it!

Da Vinci: Hehe. For all his bluster, our new director really does wear his heart on his sleeve.

Da Vinci: I'm pretty sure that was his way of showing he's worried about you two. I mean, it's pretty obvious at this point, right?

Mash: ...Yes, it is.

Fujimaru 1: I'm starting to get a better sense of him.

Mash: ...

Fujimaru 2: We'll have to make sure we come back safely, so we don't worry him.

Mash: Right, Senpai. We already made him worry a lot during Sigurd's attack...

Da Vinci: Oh, you should've heard him: “Have the Demi-Servant girl's injuries healed yet? Will those two be okay if they run into the demonic sword wielder again? ”

Da Vinci: Not that he's gonna lift a finger himself, given how he's been even more timid than usual ever since Holmes got taken out!

Mash: I must admit, I am a little worried about the Border,with you being the only one who can defend it now...

Da Vinci: Hey, I know I'm not much of a fighter. But don't you worry.

Da Vinci: I'm pretty sure Sigurd isn't gonna bother the Border anymore...

Da Vinci: Plus I've already gone and put up an extra sturdy Bounded Field around it anyway!

Da Vinci: And it's not just sturdy. I made sure none of the indigenous life would even be able to tell it's there, especially the giants.

Da Vinci: I don't think I've worked this hard on a Bounded Field since I was putting the finishing touches on the Mona Lisa...

Mash: (I-I had no idea Da Vinci used to put up Bounded Fields around her paintings back when she was alive! )

Da Vinci: All right then, we'll be here waiting for you to come back with good news.

Da Vinci: You two be extra careful out there. We still don't know much about this place, after all.

Da Vinci: Not to mention that, well...

Da Vinci: ...the fact that we won't be able to communicate is going to be a serious issue. I wish I could have done something about that, but we're past that now.

Da Vinci: The ice and snow here are infused with magical energy, which'll get in the way no matter what, so we won't be able to talk to each other once you're more than a few kilometers out.

Da Vinci: But that doesn't mean I'm giving up. I've still got a few ideas I'll try when I get the chance.

Fujimaru 1: You've had a lot on your plate between healing Holmes and fixing the Border.

Fujimaru 2: Just make sure you don't push yourself too hard, okay?

Da Vinci: With the Border immobilized...

Da Vinci: ...we effectively won't be able to share what we each learn until you make it back to this Norrköping area.

Da Vinci: This'll be the first time you two are entirely on your own. Make sure you're especially careful.

Da Vinci: Don't go out of your way to save any cute girls asking for help unless they're at least as cute as me, okay?

Mash: We won't. And please, you take care of yourself too, Da Vinci.

Da Vinci: Ugh, you guys are too damn nice for being so young.... Then again, I guess I'm younger than you now, aren't I!

Da Vinci: Okay, I'll be careful too. Oh, and one more–

Mash: Fou!?

Fou: Fou fou, fooou! Kyuuu!

Da Vinci: Whoa!

Mash: When did you sneak out here!? Aha, you were hiding out in my shield again, weren't you?

Fou: Fou fou fou, fo fo fo.

Mash: ...Okay. It looks like Fou's coming along with us, too.

Fujimaru 1: I feel safer already.

Fujimaru 2: The more the merrier!

Mash: Yes. Going from two to three means fifty percent more resources! Thanks for coming along, Fou.

Fou: Fou fooou.

Da Vinci: So even Fou's trying to help make up for our lack of personnel now...Well, he has great instincts, at least...Isn't that right, you little fur ball, you!

Fou: Fou!

Mash: Hehe. Yes, Fou is more than capable in his own right. Having him along will be a big help!

Mash: I think we'll be able to effectively fight as a group of three now.

Fou: Fou fo, fo fo fo.

Mash: Yes, I mean that.

Fou: Fo, fooou. Fou!

Mash: You want to sit on my shoulder? Not Senpai's?

Da Vinci: Looks like he really likes you, Mash. Okay, this two-person team is now officially a three-person team!

Da Vinci: And on that's finally time to show off my latest invention!

Da Vinci: This little beauty is something I came up with while I was trying to figure out a way to stay in touch.

Da Vinci: Sadly, they won't help us communicate, but they will help you get around this Lostbelt a lot easier! I give you...

Da Vinci: ...the Ortinax Ollerus Board attachments!

Mash: What the...!?

Mash: Are these some kind of additional equipment for my exoskeleton? When did you even have time to make these...!?

Fujimaru 1: They're skis!

Fujimaru 2: Those are skis if ever I saw any!

Fou: Fou, fooo fo!?

Da Vinci: Never underestimate a genius! Hehehehe, that's right! These are basically super awesome skis!

Da Vinci: Thanks to their magical energy thrusters, you'll be zipping around like nobody's business! Not even Ollerus, the Guardian Patron Saint of Skiers, has got anything on these babies!

Da Vinci: Don't worry, they come with wards and gyro sensors designed to help you keep your balance.

Da Vinci: I've got a set for you too, Fujimaru. With these,you three should be able to make your way around the Scandinavian snow plains in the blink of an eye!

Fujimaru 1: Now we won't have to ride any weird local animals...!

Fujimaru 2: This is awesome! You're the best, Da Vinci!

Da Vinci: Hehehe. That's right, you should damn well be impressed!

Da Vinci: Oh, be aware that if you want to go really fast, you should fold yours up and just hang on tight to Mash.

Mash: ...Thank you, Da Vinci. I appreciate this a lot,but this isn't taking care of yourself.

Da Vinci: Hehehe. Hey, if you're going to stay up all night working, best to do it when you're young☆

Da Vinci: Besides, I asked way too much of you two the day before yesterday. It's the least I can do to make up for that.

Da Vinci: I'm sure Holmes would say the same...

Da Vinci: ...but then again, given what our great detective is like...maybe not...

Da Vinci: ...I know it's my fault you two keep having to shoulder so much responsibility.

Da Vinci: So at the risk of sounding like a broken record: be careful out there.

Da Vinci: I filled the storage space in Mash's shield with camping gear, water, and a few days worth of food, so make sure you rest up when you need to.

Da Vinci: Remember, it's gonna be just the two of you (and Fou), so you need to be extra, extra careful!

Mash: Right!

Fujimaru 1: See you later, Da Vinci!

Da Vinci: ...Bye! Have a good trip!


Mash: ...Snow, ice, and fire.

Mash: So this is the Scandinavian Lostbelt...Looking at it again, it's all very...

Fujimaru 1: Strange.

Mash: Yes. I think so too.

Mash: Ice and snow need extreme cold, but fire is one of the hottest things in the world. Yet somehow, here they are, coexisting.

Mash: To see two such fundamentally different things mixed together like this...I don't know what to call it other than strange.

Mash: There doesn't seem to be anything here that can burn,but there's the fire, floating above the mountains...

Mash: If this isn't from Mystics, I don't know what is!

Fou: Fou!

Fujimaru 2: Beautiful.

Mash: Yes...that's true. It's definitely a beautiful landscape.

Mash: Ice and snow need extreme cold, but fire is one of the hottest things in the world. Yet somehow, here they are, coexisting.

Mash: I've never seen anything like it before.

Mash: But, at the same's kind of bizarre.

Mash: There doesn't seem to be anything here that can burn,but there's the fire, floating above the mountains...

Mash: This scenery may be beautiful,but it's also incomprehensibly Mystic...

Fou: Fou...

Mash: ...The Ollerus Boards are great at getting around, since they can even go up inclines, but when you move at high speeds, you really won't be able to take stock of your surroundings as much.

Mash: Now that we're taking a break to look around,there are several things I've noticed.

Mash: For example, the amount of fallen snow. I read that Scandinavia actually isn't all that snowy, except for Norway.

Mash: But here, in this Lostbelt...The mountains are frozen over, even the trees are...

Mash: No, wait...Not trees, just ice shaped like conifers...?

Fujimaru 1: Does this mean there aren't any plants here?

Fujimaru 2: It does look like there's only fire, ice, and snow here.

Mash: It certainly seems that way. At least, at this point...

Mash: ......

Mash: Maybe this means there's a different force at work here. Something very different from what caused Russia's ice age.

Mash: I remember hearing these Lostbelts are alternate, hypothetical versions of history.

Mash: What must this world's history have been like for it to have this sort of scenery...?

Mash: Ah...

Fou: Fo, fooou! Kyaaau!

Mash: Look, Senpai! Birds!

Mash: That must mean this Lostbelt has other, normal animals and not just giants and Demonic Beasts!

Fujimaru 1: Looks that way.

Fujimaru 2: I'm kind of relieved to see that.

Mash: Right. The fact that birds can survive in this world is a good sign.

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Mash: Fou? Is there something about those birds that bothers you...?

Fou: Fou fou, fou.

Mash: ?

Mash: Um, anyway, we should get back to our journey. Fou, you stay inside my shield while we use the Ollerus Boards, okay?

Mash: We don't want the wind blowing you away while we're on the move, after all.

Fou: Fooou.

Mash: But first...

Mash: Here's a map of where we would be in Proper Human History. There's definitely some margin of error, since there aren't any GPS satellites to sync it up with, but it should still help...

Mash: There we go. We're currently on the Scandinavian Peninsula, right on top of what used to be Lake Vättern in southern Sweden.

Fujimaru 1: Got it.

Mash: ......

Fujimaru 2: Hang on. We're on a lake?

Mash: ...Yes, that's right. At least, we would be in Proper Human History...

Mash: Lake Vättern is an enormous lake believed to have taken shape after Earth's most recent ice age. It's said to be almost two thousand squre kilometers.

Mash: But, in this Lostbelt, we're obviously standing on a mountain range covered in snow...

Fou: Fooou, fou fou.

Mash: ...It's not just the ice, snow, and fire...This Lostbelt differs from Proper Human History in a lot of significant ways...

Mash: I thought I'd learned that in Russia, but after seeing all this, I feel like I'm learning it all over again.

Fou: Fou fou fou. Fo fo fou fo, fou!

Fou: Fou, kyuuu!

Mash: Ah! Fou!?

Fou: Kyau, kyuuu!

Mash: Wh-what is it, Fou? Did I do something to–

Mash: Ah!!!

Mash: I'm so sorry! I should have noticed sooner! There are large magical energy signals nearby...They look to be giants!

Mash: But, why now? We didn't run into a single one on the way here...

Mash: Maybe they only approach you if you stay in one place for a long time?

Mash: No, never mind. I'll worry about that later. Right now, we need to take care of the immediate threat.

Fujimaru 1: Let's go head them off!

Fujimaru 2: Make sure your newly tuned-up Ortinax is ready to go!

F:Mash: Understood. Ready to begin battle once the giants are in range!


Mash: ...The battle is over. There are no other magical energy signals within thirty meters of our position.

Mash: I have to apologize again, Senpai.

Mash: Even after all of Da Vinci's reminders to be careful, I still let my guard down.

Mash: I know I need to be extra vigilant in watching for magical energy signals and Servants, especially since we can't contact the Border...

Mash: ...and yet, I completely failed at that task...

Fujimaru 1: Don't worry, Mash. It's okay. Really.

Mash: ...Thank you, Senpai.

Fujimaru 2: Let's take this as a reminder of why we need to be more careful.

Mash: Right. I promise, I won't make the same mistake again!

Fou: Fou! Fou! Fooou...

Mash: ...Thank you, Fou, but it's not your fault. You have nothing to apologize for.

Mash: If anything, I should be thanking you for alerting us to the danger. So, thank you.

Fou: Fou fou.

Mash: Given that we're unable to contact the Shadow Border, we're effectively cut off from Chaldea itself. I need to keep that in mind.

Mash: In accordance with the Chaldea Personnel Code,Article 23, Paragraph 2...

Mash:'s imperative that I remain calm,and proceed with caution.

Mash: In other words...I'm free to make decisions, act independently, and return to base at my own discretion!

Mash: ...And then make an official report, of course.

Fujimaru 1: Personnel Code, Article 23, Paragraph 2, huh...

Fujimaru 2: It seems kind of, uh, sparse on the details...

Mash: Yes, it is. Dr. Roman added Paragraph 2 when no one was looking.

Fujimaru 1: That explains it.

Mash: Yes...All right, let's resume our expedition, Senpai.

Fujimaru 2: That's just like him.

Mash: Yes. It is, isn't it?

Mash: I've confirmed that the Ortinax Ollerus Board attachments have been safely shut down and stowed.

Mash: Initiating standard Ortinax movement mode.

Mash: Since there are a lot of trees in this area, I think it would be better to put the Ollerus Boards away and move around on foot for a while.

Fujimaru 1: Good idea. Let's do that.

Mash: Okay, Senpai.

Fujimaru 2: So many ice trees...

Mash: ...They're not really just frozen trees then, are they?

Mash: ...Trees actually made out of ice...

Mash: I can't tell if they were carved from ice, or if all these tree-like formations were stuck in the ground...

Mash: Either way...I can't imagine there would be much wildlife in an place like this.

Fou: Fou...

Mash: That said, I don't know if this is a good thing or not, but...

Mash: ...based on the magical energy signals I'm sensing, it looks like there are more giants past the ice trees.

Mash: There are more of them gathered together there than anywhere else we've seen so far.

Mash: Maybe the path we took to avoid the fiery mountains ended up bringing us to their territory.

Fujimaru 1: We don't want to fight them if we can help it.

Fujimaru 2: Let's try to make sure they don't see us.

Mash: Good point. I'll keep that in mind, Master.

Fou: Fou, fou fou? Fau?

Mash: Yes, Fou. That means we'll be walking from here on.

Fou: Fou!

Fou: Fou!

Mash: I can't believe he's already gone that far ahead...

Mash: Please don't run off too far on your own, Fou. We don't want a giant spotting you.

Mash: Oh, but then again, maybe it would be okay.

Mash: You're so cute that even a giant might want to keep you as a pet instead of eating you...

Fou: Fou. Fou.

Mash: ......

Mash: ...Senpai, can I talk to you about something?

Fujimaru 1: Of course.

Mash: Thank you.

Fujimaru 2: Is this about Sigurd?

Mash: ...Yes, it is.

Mash: Something has been bothering me about him.

Mash: Sigurd is one of the greatest heroes in all of Scandinavia.

Mash: He reforged King Sigmund–his father's demonic sword, Gram, after the divine spear Gungnir shattered it...

Mash: ...then went on to defeat the dragon Fafnir and gain its wisdom. That all fits with what Holmes told us.

Mash: Later, he and Brynhild the Valkyrie fell in love, but their relationship was poisoned by hate, and ended with his death...

Mash: He has many of the same roots as much so that some believe they were actually the same hero.

Mash: And yet...I don't know why, but...

Mash: ...I didn't get that sense at all from that masked Heroic Spirit...

Fujimaru 1: True, he and Siegfried couldn't be more different.

Mash: ...I agree.

Fujimaru 2: He was definitely really strong, but...

Mash: Something keeps nagging at the back of my mind. It's hard to put it into words, but–

Mash: Senpai, I think I hear some–

B:Child's Voice: ...Eeyaaaaaaaaah!

Fujimaru 1: That sounded like a child!

Fujimaru 2: Mash!

Mash: Right! It came from the north-northwest! Let's go!

Girl: O-ohh no...

Girl: They saw me...Now what do I do? It was going so well, too...

Girl: I don't understand...Why do things never turn out well for me!? I'm such an idiot!

Girl: Ahhhhhh...! No, no...Please, no...!

Girl: Eep...!

Mash: We made it, Master!

Mash: Please focus on keeping her safe! As for me–

Mash: ...I'll handle these giants. You get back too please, Fou!

Fou: Fou fou!

Girl: Wh-wh-what the...? Who are you two...?

Girl: No! No, no, no, no, you can't! Any child the Bergrisar find is doomed!

Girl: you have to run away if you see a child being attacked by one of them!

Girl: I-I don't understand...Why are you doing this!? Go on, get out of here!

Fujimaru 1: We can't do that!

Fujimaru 2: That is not an option!

Girl: H-huh...?

Girl: Eeyaaaaaaaaah!!! You idiot! Now they're going to squish all of us...!

Mash: No they won't! We won't let them! Ortinax is holding steady at maximum output. I can do this. Master!

Fujimaru 1: Let's save this girl, Mash!

Mash: Right!


A:Mash: ...The battle is over. I don't detect any other magical energy signals within thirty meters.

Mash: We defeated the giants and ice creatures...but that was the first time we've come across a mountain giant.

Mash: ...A Bergrisi...

Mash: In Norse mythology, the Bergrisar were a race of mountain giants that were on friendly terms with the Jötnar, the frost giants.

Mash: But, I don't remember reading anything about them banding together and attacking humans like that...

Fujimaru 1: First things first: great job out there, Mash.

Mash: Thank you, Master.

Fujimaru 2: How's the Ortinax doing? Everything okay?

Mash: Yes, everything's fine. Not to worry!

Mash: I managed to fend off the attackers without sustaining any injury, all thanks to your support, Senpai.

Mash: The load on the Ortinax is well within its tolerance.... Da Vinci did an amazing job tuning it up.

Fou: Fou, fou fou. Fooou.

Mash: Oh! That's right.

Mash: Senpai, is that girl–

B:Girl: Bergrisar, Bergrisar, Bergrisar...

Girl: O Heavenly Mother, O merciful Goddess...Please, I beg of you.

Girl: Even if the giants do smoosh me flat, please let me stay with everyone else after I die...

Girl: ......

Mash: Umm...Excuse me...

Mash: (Is she speaking Swedish? The talisman doesn't have any problem translating conversation, but it's still a little hard to make out what she's saying. )

Mash: (It might just be me, but it kind of sounds like she has a strong accent too? )

Girl: ......

Fujimaru 1: It's okay. You can open your eyes.

Fujimaru 2: All the giants are gone now.

Mash: That's right. We're not going to hurt you. I promise you're safe for the moment.

Girl: ...

Girl: ...I-I'm alive...? There's no more Bergrisar around?

Mash: That's right. You have nothing to worry about. There are no more giants around here.

Girl: ...(Looks around)

Girl: ...(Relieved sigh)

Girl: That's amazing!

Girl: I can't believe it! The Goddess must have sent you!

Girl: Thank you, thank you, thank you! You two saved my life. That's so amazing!

Girl: How did you do it!? Usually, anyone the giants see ends up getting pancaked...

Girl: ...but none of us are even a little bit squished! Oh, uh, I'm sorry.

Girl: ...Ahem. You're supposed to introduce yourself when you first meet someone, aren't you. I remember learning that.

Girl: My name's Gerda!

Mash: Hello, Gerda. That's a lovely name you have. It has a wonderful Nordic ring to it.

Gerda: Thanks! Hehe, I like the way it sounds too.

Gerda: It's very nice to meet you both, Ms. Black Armor, [♂ Mr. Black Hair /♀ Ms. Red Hair].

Gerda: What are YOUR names?

Fujimaru 1: I'm Fujimaru.

Mash: And I'm Mash Kyrielight.

Gerda: Fujimaru and Mash Kyrielight, huh. Got it!

Fujimaru 2: This girl in the armor is Mash Kyrielight.

Mash: Thank you, Master. And this nice [♂ boy /♀ girl] is Fujimaru.

Mash: [♂ He's /♀ She's] my senpai.

Gerda: Senpai...?

Gerda: You two are incredible. I can't believe you really saved me!

Gerda: What village are you from? You don't seem like you're shivering...How can you not be cold with so few layers?

Gerda: I'm nice and warm, thanks to my fur coat. I knew I'd have to be ready for anything once I decided to go out on my own.

Gerda: The grown-ups won't help 'cause they're busy getting everything ready for tomorrow, so I have to do it all myself.

Gerda: That includes the cooking, and tending to the children who have come down with terrible fevers!

Gerda: O-oh, right, a reward!

Gerda: When someone does something nice for you,you have to repay them.

Gerda: Oh, umm...I don't have anything on me right now. I'd have to go back to the village...

Gerda: B-but I also have to find the medicinal herbs before I go back...

Gerda: ...Hmmm. What should I do...

Mash: ...

Mash: (Senpai, Senpai. This is the first Scandinavian we've met! This must mean there are human villages here. )

Mash: (And they don't seem to have mutated to adapt to this environment, like the Yaga had. Maybe that means their culture is closer to Proper Human History. )

Mash: (Although...for some reason...)

Mash: (...her outfit doesn't seem like anything someone would wear in 2020...)

Mash: (Regardless, I think she'll be willing to take us to her village. Once we get there, we can ask around...)

Fujimaru 1: ...Right.

Mash: ...Senpai?

Mash: ......

Fujimaru 2: When the Tree of Emptiness is gone, she'll...

Mash: Ah!

Mash: ...Yes.

Mash: Once it's gone, all life in this Lostbelt will most likely...well...

Mash: But, if we're going to restore Proper Human History...

Fujimaru 1: I know, it's just...

Fujimaru 2: I couldn't just let a little girl die...

Mash: ...Yes. I feel the same way.

Mash: I think I would have fought off those giants even if you hadn't said anything, Senpai.

Mash: ......

Mash: No...there's no way you would have just stood by, Senpai. That's just not who you are.

Mash: You would always be the first to try and rescue her.


Fou: Fou fou, fooou!

Fou: Fo, fo, fou!

Gerda: Aww, you're adorable! Come here! It's okay!

Fou: Fou, kyaaau!

Gerda: Oooh, that looks like fun. Let me try...

Gerda: Hop!

Fou: Foooooou!

Gerda: Teehee! You're too pretty to be a mouse. Maybe you're a dog? Or a cat!

Gerda: Oh, I know. You must be a horse!

Fou: Forse!?

Gerda: I've never seen any animal besides sheep this close before!

Gerda: You're so beautiful...

Gerda: Oh, but I did see something else beautiful just a little while ago.

Gerda: It was a rainbow! A huge, seven-colored rainbow that stretched all the way past the mountains!

Gerda: Nobody else saw it, but I did. Isn't that amazing? Hehe!

Fou: Fo fou.

Gerda: Hehehe. Yeah, I wish you could have seen it, too!

Fou: Fou!

Mash: I wonder why Fou is in such a good mood. Could it be the weather?

Mash: Maybe he likes it cold like this?

Mash: There, look, Senpai. We've only just met Gerda,and Fou has already taken to her.

Mash: Oh, wait. Maybe it's the other way around,and Gerda's actually the one who's taken to him?

Fujimaru 1: I think so.

Fujimaru 2: ...She's a cheerful girl, isn't she?

Mash: Yes. She's very cheerful.

Mash: And it sounds like she came all this way to find special medicine for a friend back in her village...

Mash: She must be very responsible, too.

Mash: There's something I'm wondering about, though...

Mash: She said she was looking for medicinal herbs, right? Does that mean plants can grow around here?

Mash: Not to mention that, if this is an emergency...

Mash: ...why is she out here all by herself?

Mash: I don't know about other regions in this Lostbelt,but it's no secret dangerous giants roam around here.

Mash: And of course, there's no way an ordinary human could fight a giant alone. They'd be dead for sure.

Mash: If someone needed to come out here...

Mash: ...shouldn't it be an armed group of adults who know how to fight...?

Fujimaru 1: Those are all good points.

Fujimaru 2: There must be more to this we don't know yet.

Gerda: Are you guys talking about me?

Gerda: That's right. I left my village to look for medicinal herbs! The grown-ups are too busy getting ready for tomorrow, so we kids have to take care of ourselves.

Gerda: And since I'm the big sister,I have to do my best to pull my weight.

Gerda: That's pretty mature of me, right? Hehe.

Fou: Fou fou, fou!

Gerda: Ahaha, is that a compliment? Thank you, Fou. You're such a good boy!

Gerda: Your fur is so pretty, too! It's so soft and smooth!

Fou: Fou fou, fooou.

Mash: I'm sorry to interrupt, but I'm afraid it's dangerous here. This area seems to be frequented by giants...

Gerda: ...Yeah, I guess you're right.

Gerda: We only see them occasionally near the village, but I know there's lots of giants around these mountains.

Gerda: Still, there's nothing else I can do...The only one who knows how to use runes is the envoy, and she isn't coming until tomorrow.

Gerda: Her runes of healing can cure people who are sick in no time...

Gerda: ...but Laura probably won't survive through the night without those herbs...

Mash: (Runes of healing...? Envoy? )

Gerda: That's why I came all this way. Someone told me that there were amazing healing herbs near here.

Gerda: They said they can cure anything,and that they're especially good for fevers!

Gerda: ...So, um, well...

Gerda: I know it's reckless of me to be out here. We're not really ever supposed to leave the village...

Mash: Really?

Gerda: Well, yes. Nobody's ever supposed to leave. Isn't it like that in your village, too?

Gerda: The only ones permitted to go outside the village are the envoys chosen to be servants of the gods.

Mash: (God...)

Mash: Um, I'm sorry, but can you explain what you mean by “the gods” and “envoys”?

Gerda: Hehe, nice try! But you won't trick me that easily!

Gerda: Lady Mash, girl in black armor.

Gerda: People have always told me that only envoys of the Goddess have swords or spears...

Gerda: ...but I didn't know you used shields, too! That's amazing, Lady Mash!

Mash: Wait. envoy...?

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, I could see it.

Mash: S-Senpai?

Fujimaru 2: Not sure about envoy, but you're definitely an angel.

Mash: ...!

Mash: C-come on, Master. This is no time to be joking around...

Fujimaru 1: Anyway, let's go find these medicinal herbs you're looking for.

Fujimaru 2: Maybe you can take us to your village once we've found the herbs?

Gerda: Hooray! I was hoping you might offer to help me! Ooh, does that mean you can read my mind?

Gerda: Even if you don't have any weapons of your own,[♂ Mr. Black Hair /♀ Ms. Red Hair]...

Gerda: must be an envoy of the gods, too!


Gerda: Tree of Emptiness? The sun?

Fou: Fou fou, fou!

Mash: That's right. The Tree of Emptiness is like a huge tree that stretches all the way up to the sky. Have you ever heard of anything like that?

Mash: As for the sun, we were hoping you might know something about why it's so big here...

Gerda: Sorry...I don't know what you mean...I don't know anything about either of those...

Gerda: I've never heard any legends about a big tree like that,and the sun's always been that size.

Gerda: It's just like mountains always being made of fire or ice. That's just how it's always been! Nobody asks why!

Mash: I see...

Gerda: Ah.

Gerda: Oh no, did I say something to offend you, Lady Mash? I'm so sorry if my answer didn't satisfy you.

Mash: No, no, its fine! Please don't worry about it.

Mash: You have nothing to apologize for. Right now, let's just focus on finding those herbs.

Gerda: Are you sure? Okay, thank you! They should be pretty close by!

Fou: Fou, fou fooou fooou.

Mash: (Senpai...)

Mash: (In Norse mythology, the world tree–Yggdrasil played a very important role. )

Mash: (I know she's young, but it seems a little strange that Gerda wouldn't know ANYTHING about it...)

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, you're right. It does.

Mash: (Right. )

Fujimaru 2: Maybe they just don't have any legends about Yggdrasil here?

Mash: (Th-that seems unlikely...)

Mash: (...but I suppose we can't completely rule it out...)

Mash: (Given that Lostbelts, by definition, are alternate histories that differ from Proper Human History...Worlds where the Pruning Theoretical Phenomenon continued to take place to the present day...)

Mash: ( is possible that the Norse mythology we know was altered somehow. )

Mash: (Mountains of ice...mountains of fire...)

Mash: (...a strangely large sun...and giants...)

Mash: (I wonder if all these things that seem so strange to us might have something to do with some different version of Norse myth...)

Mash: (...assuming that the myth here was actually historical fact here. )

Fou: Fou, fou!

Fou: Fo...Fo fo...Fo...Fooou...

Mash: Senpai, Gerda! I'm sorry, but please stay still for a bit! Try not to make any sound...

Gerda: (Eep. Giant footsteps! )

Mash: (Fou was the first to notice again. He must have sensed the giant's presence before we did. )

Gerda: (???)

Mash: (I'm sorry, Gerda. This must be a lot for you to take in all at once. How can I put this...)

Mash: (Um, basically...Fou's got very good instincts! )

Fou: (Fou! Fo fo fo. )

Gerda: (Oh, I see. He looks very proud of that, too. )

Mash: (...)

Fou: (...)

Gerda: (...)

Mash: (...)

Fou: (...)

Gerda: (...)

Mash: (Those footsteps aren't getting any quieter...It looks like the giant isn't about to leave. )

Gerda: (Well of course not. We're almost there, after all. )

Fujimaru 1: (Almost where, exactly? )

Fujimaru 2: (Oh no. Don't tell me the medicinal herbs are)

Gerda: (This way. Follow me, but be very, very quiet. )

Mash: (Activating Ortinax's stealth mode. Its silencing talisman should muffle the engine and exhaust noise...)

Mash: (There, that should do it. Let's go, Master. )

Gerda: (This is the place! )

Gerda: (There, look. See all the grass? There's even flowers, too! )

Gerda: (They say that long ago, there used to be places like that outside our village, too. Places where animals and flowers could grow and thrive. )

Gerda: (They say it happens waaay up high in places between fire and ice mountains all the time. )

Gerda: (So I thought about it,and decided to climb the ice mountain side. )

Gerda: (Not that it was much of a choice, since humans can't climb the fire mountains, right? We'd get burned up. )

Mash: (I see. That does make sense...)

Mash: (Maybe it's because we're relatively high up near the fire that the ice and snow have melted here...)

Mash: (The air is nice and warm, and you can see the land. That must be why plants and flowers can grow here. )

Mash: (It's almost like a garden...)

Fujimaru 1: (It IS beautiful here...)

Fujimaru 2: (Um, I can't help but notice the giants...)

Mash: (Y-yes, there are giants walking around here, too. But that has helped us learn something, Senpai! )

Mash: (It looks like Norse giants can live in all kinds of environments, not just cold ones! )

Mash: (In fact, judging from the way they're gathered here,they may even prefer warmer climates. )

Mash: (...I guess they don't like the cold, either. )

Fujimaru 1: (There are a lot of them here...)

Fujimaru 2: (This is going to make things difficult...)

Mash: (...That's true. )

Mash: (I suggest we whittle the giants' numbers down a bit, collect the herbs we're after...)

Mash: (...then quickly activate the Ollerus Boards' thruster mode to make an emergency getaway. )

Fou: (Fo fou. )

Mash: (So far, our path has been through the eastern ice forest, but the west looks to be a steep, snowy slope. )

Mash: (So if we can just get to that slope,and ski down the rest of the way...)

Gerda: (Yes! If you're good skiers,that will work! I think. )

Gerda: (But how can we? We don't have any skis...)

Fujimaru 1: (Don't worry, we've got that part covered. )

Fujimaru 2: (We've got something even better! )

Gerda: Huh? You brought skis with you!? Where are they?

Gerda: ...Oops. I'm so sorr–

Fou: Fou faaau! Kyau!!!

Mash: It's okay, Gerda! We'll just, um,start the operation sooner than we expected!

Mash: Senpai, requesting orders and support!

Fujimaru 1: Right! Now let's get this operation underway!

Fujimaru 2: First mission: reduce the giants' numbers!

Mash: Understood, Master! Switching Ortinax from stealth mode to combat mode!

Mash: ...Moving to intercept the enemy now!


Mash: The first wave is down! Auto-tuning Ortinax for consecutive battles. Releasing exhaust, now!

Mash: Output values remain stable. I'm still good to go.

Fou: Fou fou fou! Kyuuu, kyu!

Mash: Don't worry, Fou! I'm conserving energy for our escape!

Mash: Resuming battle, Master!


Mash: ...Second wave defeated. Da Vinci really is amazing. I can keep going, no problem!

Fou: Fooou, fo fou!

Mash: Uh, yes, I'm pretty sure I'm not pushing it too far! The Ortinax's output is down by about twenty percent, but it should be fine for another battle, at least.

Mash: Don't worry about me, Senpai! Just tell me what you need me to do...!

Fujimaru 1: There's still a bunch more coming!

Fujimaru 2: I'd just as soon avoid a fight if we can.

Fou: Fo...Fo fo fo, fou!?

Mash: Huh...?

Mash: Fou! Stop Gerda! She's trying to run off on her own!

Gerda: I'll be right back! I can't just sit around and do nothing while you guys fight!

Mash: Gerda!

Mash: Khh...You're not going...anywhere!

Mash: Expanding the Ortinax's functionality! Temporarily boosting output! ...Amalgam Goad!

Fujimaru 1: Hang in there just a little longer, Mash!

Mash: I will! Don't worry, I'm fine!

Fujimaru 2: Gerda! Get back here!

Gerda: I got the herbs!

Gerda: (Huff, huff, huff)...(Gasp, gasp)...! I did it. I really did it!

Fujimaru 1: Mash!

Fujimaru 2: Start heading for the western slope!

Mash: Understood!

Gerda: Wooow...! You're so amazing, Lady Mash!

Gerda: Those giants are huge, but you fought them like they were nothing. I didn't think that was possible...!

Gerda: I knew you envoys weren't scared of giants!

Gerda: I bet they could never catch and squish you like they do with all the grown-ups.

Fujimaru 1: All the grown-ups?

Fujimaru 2: What do you mean by

Mash: Senpai, hang on tight to me! You too, Gerda and Fou! ...Okay, here goes!

Gerda: Eee!

Fou: Fou fou, kyaaau!

Mash: Equipping the Ortinax Ollerus Board attachments now...Activating emergency booster!

Mash: The wind pressure will be incredible, so make sure to keep your eyes closed! My visor will protect me!

Mash: Switching over from stage three thruster to emergency booster. Ollerus Boards, standing by. Three, two, one...

Mash: ...Ignition!

Koyanskaya: Hellooo, Opheliaaa☆

Ophelia: It's you...

Koyanskaya: Welcome to this wonderfully wintry snow-and-ice guest room, fit for a princess–Oh, right, this isn't your first time here, is it?

Koyanskaya: I hope you don't mind that I got started without you? I have to say, this vodka on Scandinavian rocks is better than I expected☆

Ophelia: ......

Koyanskaya: Oh my, I can see you don't approve of drinking on the job. Indeed, I couldn't agree more.

Koyanskaya: But it's not MY fault; it's this castle. Just when I thought I'd get a reprieve from Russia's cold, too...

Koyanskaya: I mean, a palace made entirely of solid ice? Talk about overwrought. They even say it's cold enough that I'd frost over without a Mystic Code.

Koyanskaya: I do prefer the cold to heat, but this is overkill! Don't you agree, darling Ophelia?

Koyanskaya: You ARE Scandinavian yourself, after all, aren't you?

Ophelia: ...It doesn't bother me.

Ophelia: I'm surprised you're still here, Koyanskaya. I'd have thought you'd be long gone to another Lostbelt by now.

Ophelia: Don't you have your own job to do,just as Lord Kirschtaria gave me one?

Koyanskaya: Oh, don't you worry about that. My work here in Scandinavia is just about done.

Koyanskaya: The Tree of Emptiness is coming along nicely,and this Lostbelt's king has been very cooperative.

Koyanskaya: Now that I've made some nice additions to my personal collection, I'll be moving on to the next Lostbelt soon.

Koyanskaya: Honestly, this has me feeling like I should have spent more time in Russia helping Kadoc a little more, seeing how smoothly things have gone here.

Koyanskaya: Still, if I'm going to worry about anyone...

Koyanskaya:'d be you, since Kadoc doesn't matter anymore,and you have a lot of work left unfinished.

Koyanskaya: Besides, we girls have to look out for each other, don't we? ☆

Ophelia: I don't recall asking for your help, Koyanskaya. If you're saying that you're worried about me, then I'll put this simply: don't be.

Koyanskaya: Aww, really? Are you sure? Suuuper sure?

Koyanskaya: We all know you're an earnest and highly capable mage, but there's just something about you that makes you seem...consumed by ennui. Like you're not quite in the moment, you know?

Koyanskaya: It kicks my maternal instincts into overdrive.

Koyanskaya: Not that I really know anything about how a mother would feel.

Ophelia: Can't you take a hint...?

Ophelia: My loyalty is with Lord Kirschtaria Wodime,and him alone. You don't have to worry about me.

Ophelia: I'll never waver, nor will I fall for anyone's deception. My Mystic Code has a talisman designed explicitly to protect my mind.

Koyanskaya: Oh? Since you went to aaall that trouble of shoring up those defenses, doesn't that suggest you see that as a weakness of yours?

Koyanskaya: Oopsies. I guess that's what they mean by “let sleeping dogs lie. ” Or maybe “silence is golden” would be more apt?

Koyanskaya: All righty, let's just pretend I didn't notice that and try this again!

Koyanskaya: Come on Ophelia, have a drink with me! We can hang out and live it up till the sun comes up!

Ophelia: ...(Sigh)

Koyanskaya: Awww. Why the sigh?

Ophelia: ...Looks like I'll just have to spell it out.

Ophelia: We don't need you here. Find another Lostbelt to visit if you're just here to indulge your hobbies.

Koyanskaya: Oh, I will. I'll be on my way just as soon as I get bored with my little Scandinavian vacation.

Koyanskaya: So let's get along until I do, hm? After all, you and I are both human haters!

Koyanskaya: Hehe...It's okay, Ophelia Phamrsolone. Poor, poor little rich girl.

Koyanskaya: Nobody will pressure you here. You'll never have to dread Sundays again.

Ophelia: Huh...?

Ophelia: What did you just–

Ophelia: ...What do you know?

Koyanskaya: Oh, don't be so surprised. We're both women, and neither of us has many other friends. Why would there be any secrets between us?

Koyanskaya: It's okay, Ophelia. You don't have to worry about anything anymore.

Koyanskaya: There's nothing to be afraid of, and nothing to feel guilty about. You can dedicate your whole being to following your beloved's orders.

Koyanskaya: The whole world has been wiped clean; now it's nothing but endless white. It's only a matter of time until these Lostbelts fall apart too.

Koyanskaya: We're all just killing time until the Foreign God graces us with their presence. So why not enjoy ourselves while we wait?

Ophelia: ...You–

Koyanskaya: So relax. Don't worry about aaanything anymore.

Koyanskaya: ...Let's just sit back and enjoy our never-ending Wednesday–Odin's day–together, shall we?

Section 4: Lord of Creation (End)

Mash: Shutting down high-speed mode, now. Good work hanging on, everyone.

Mash: Our current estimated location is atop what used to be Lake Vänern...the lake northwest of Lake Vättern.

Mash: Which means this village almost certainly didn't exist in Proper Human History.

Gerda: We're here! Welcome to my village!

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Gerda: Hehe, this is so strange and wonderful! I thought guests only showed up in stories!

Gerda: I never thought I'd get to actually welcome real guests myself one day. And, oooh, and, and, and! You must both be envoys, too!

Mash: Have you never had anyone visit from outside your village before?

Gerda: No, we haven't. All the villages really keep to themselves...

Gerda: Oh, but, maybe it's different at the other villages?

Mash: I see...

Fujimaru 1: This village is a lot bigger than I expected.

Mash: Same here. From the outside, it looked like a fairly wide area surrounded by large wooden walls.

Mash: Although, there are surprisingly few houses. I would guess there can't be more than fifty.

Fujimaru 2: What's this village called?

Mash: Come to think of it, you never did tell us your village's name, did you, Gerda?

Mash: The part that stands out the most to me is the large gate that makes up what looks to be the only entrance. I don't know much about architectural design, but this place does seem to have its own unique style...

Mash: I also sense powerful magical energy here. The whole village is surrounded by a Bounded Field centered on that large gate.

Mash: It's designed to keep away giants, beasts, and other beings related to magecraft. I can feel it weighing down on me too, though only a little.

Mash: Although, I didn't notice it at all until I was inside...

Mash: I'm guessing it's the snow...

Mash: The magical energy mixed in with the snow and ice, and the magical energy that makes up this village's Bounded Field, are extremely similar.

Mash: It's a very static, sedate kind of if its presence were the most natural thing in the world.

Mash: It's calm, gentle, and very stable in the amount of magical energy it holds.

Mash: Maybe “kind” is a little too vague,but I'm not quite sure how else to put it...

Fujimaru 1: So like, magecraft designed to enrich people's lives...?

Mash: Yes, that's a much clearer way to put it, Senpai!

Fujimaru 2: I think “kind” works.

Mash: Yes. I first noticed it in the snow plains, but it feels like there's nothing malicious in this Lostbelt at all.

Mash: All that aside, this village is really spacious...

Mash: Maybe that's because there are so few houses,and a large plot of farmland in the center?

Mash: I can see they grow all sorts of crops here. There's wheat, numerous fruit trees...

Mash: It's just like Gerda said. It's as warm here as it was in that flower garden.

Mash: This explains how people could survive even in a Lostbelt predominantly made up of snow, ice, and fire.

Mash: Although, there's still one thing I don't understand. If Bounded Fields are so crucial to ensuring people's way of life here, who put them up?

Fou: Fou fou, fou.

Mash: Maybe magecraft is just a part of everyday life here, even more than it was in Russia.

Mash: Or maybe there's someone in these villages who knows how to work with Bounded Fields...

Gerda: Hehehe. Bounded Field? Are you talking about the charm on the gate?

Gerda: I didn't really understand most of what you were talking about, but, um, I do know that every village gate always has a charm on it.

Gerda: The envoy put them there for us. They keep out all the giants, the ice beasts...really anything scary.

Gerda: I'm surprised you two didn't know that, since you're envoys! Is that just the way it works, Lady Mash?

Mash: Oh, uh, well...

Mash: I think you may have the wrong idea about us. I don't believe we're what you call envoys.

Mash: Although, if “envoys” is the term you use for visitors,then I suppose we might qualify...

Goredolf: Hm? Hmm?

Goredolf: Oh, I got through! Let me see, is this thing on...?

Goredolf: Ahem, ahem. This is the Shadow Border. Can you hear me, field ops?

Gerda: Aah!

Fou: Fo fou.

Fujimaru 1: Director?

Fujimaru 2: The Shadow Border got through to us!?

Mash: Director! It's you! I thought we couldn't communicate once we got a few kilometers away...

Goredolf: Yes, well, my technical advisor has been testing out a number of different things in between her work on repairing the Border. All under my impeccable supervision, of course.

Goredolf: And thanks to those efforts, we've been able to deploy a Mystic Code drone to extend our comm range!

Goredolf: I was told it should help us both observe and communicate over greater distances, but I didn't think it'd just suddenly start working now, of all times!

Goredolf: ...Ugh, but just my luck! Neither our technical advisor, nor any staff, are here in the cockpit right now. They're all out repairing the Border...!

Gerda: Ooh, ooh. Who's this tiny, see-through tubby man?

Gerda: He's fat! I've never seen a fat person before! So this is what they call chubby!

Goredolf: Chubby!?

Gerda: Is he a friend of yours, Lady Mash? Does that mean he's an envoy, too?

Fou: Fou...fou?

Goredolf: Tubby...? Did she call me “tubby”...?

Mash: W-well, um, this is a communicator...It's a tool we have for talking to people far away.

Mash: Also, um, the director may be big-boned, but–

Goredolf: Is that child a native of this place? Then you must have found a safe village!

Goredolf: Then again, if that foulmouthed little brat who doesn't understand that mocking people's body types is not acceptable is anything to go by, then her culture must still be at the nadir of civilization!

Gerda: ?

Goredolf: Well, no matter. Children do tend to be naturally cruel, and my skin is quite thick by this point. I'm not the least bit bothered.

Goredolf: So never mind the child. Just give me a detailed report about your situation.

Goredolf: So you made your way to this village after rescuing that child? It seems you put your experience in Russia to good use...

Goredolf: Or, I suppose I should say my supervisory role in Russia has benefitted you even after that Lostbelt. Not bad, making it this far this fast.

Goredolf: Let me begin by congratulating you on your good work. I'll be sure to share your information with the rest of the staff, including the technical advisor.

Goredolf: Now, given that our connection is still unstable, and we can't talk for seems it's time I took matters into my own hands!

Fou: Fo!?

Fujimaru 1: You're going to come here, Director?

Fujimaru 2: That sounds pretty dangerous for you.

Goredolf: What do you think I am, some adventure-crazed nut like the rest of you!? I'm talking about the remote interrogation of a local via this transmission!

Goredolf: ...But not this child, obviously. We won't get anything useful out of her. Now then, little one.

Gerda: Me?

Goredolf: Run along and get your parents, if you don't mind. I need to talk to them.

Gerda: Parents? What are those?

Goredolf: Huh? Your mother and father, of course. If they're dead, your legal guardian will do.

Gerda: Oh, you mean the Goddess? I hear she is everyone's mother...

Gerda: Every human is the Goddess's child, after all.

Gerda: But...I'm afraid the Goddess isn't here, Mr. Chubby.

Fou: Fooou...

Mash: ...Gerda?

Goredolf: Hm? Don't tell me you have no concept of parents? I've never heard of such a culture.

Goredolf: I suppose it is possible for some newer religions, but given your primitive-looking clothing, I can't imagine your village is part of something like that.

Goredolf: What is going on...? A-all right then, just fetch me your village elder, or mayor, or your...supervisor, I don't know!

Gerda: Supervisor?

Goredolf: Yes! A capable, distinguished person who is in charge of everything, like me!

Gerda: Distinguished? Does being a chubby person make you distinguished?

Goredolf: THAT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH IT! Good heavens,girl, didn't your parents raise you to–

Goredolf: Oh, right, you don't have parents, do you. know! Somebody with authority in your village!

Gerda: Wha...?

Goredolf: The most amazing person in your village! The one you can always count on to help you out!

Gerda: Are you talking about envoys...? Lady Mash is certainly more amazing than normal people.

Gerda: The only other amazing people I can think of are the giants and the envoy, but the envoy isn't coming until tomorrow.

Goredolf: Envoy...?

Mash: Gerda calls me an envoy, too. I'm afraid I'm still not sure what she means by it...

Gerda: What I mean? An envoy's an envoy, right? I mean, no human could ever defeat a giant.

Gerda: ...Ahem. But never mind that!

Gerda: I still need to show you around properly, don't I?

Gerda: Welcome, honored envoys. Oh, you too, Mr. Tiny See-Through Chubby.

Gerda: Welcome to our home, Village 23. Please, let me repay you for saving my life.

Gerda: You can spend the night in my house! I'll be thirteen soon, after all, so I've already got my own house!

Gerda: Hehe, we can have dinner in front of my fireplace. Oh, I can get out that mead I've been saving for a special occasion, too.

Gerda: This will be great! We can have freshly baked bread, and I'll get some fish, too!

Gerda: I'll go fishing before it gets dark and make sure to catch the biggest one in the pond...

Fou: Fou fooou! Fo fo!

Goredolf: Wait. Hang on. What did you say your village's name was?

Mash: ...Village 23, right?

Gerda: Hm? Yes, that's right. What about it?

Mash: Well, um, it just sounds a bit...

Fujimaru 1: That's not like any name for a village I know.

Fujimaru 2: Why is your village named with a number?

Gerda: ???

Gerda: There's nothing strange about it. After all–

E:Children: It's Gerda! Gerda's back!

E:Children: Welcome back, Gerda. I can't believe it! You really came back from the outside! And you did get the herbs the legends talked about!?

F:Children: Now Laura's gonna be all right! Hooray!

E:Children: Who're they!? Ooh, there's a white animal, too...It IS an animal, right? What is it? Is it a mouse?

Fou: Fofooou kyuuu!

E:Children: Wow, you're so pretty, miss! And your black armor is so awesome!

F:Children: Pretty hair...Pretty face...You look like the envoy! Oh, are you an envoy, too?

E:Children: Your boobies are so big! Oooh, you look so cool in that armor!

Mash: I-I, u-uh...S-Senpai, what's–

E:Children: That old guy's so tubby! Why're you smaller than us even though you look so old, mister?

Goredolf: Grrr, be quiet! Do you children ever stop squawking!?

Goredolf: Just run off and play, would you!? Or better yet, go and fetch a grown-up!

Fujimaru 1: Kids! Kids everywhere!

Fujimaru 2: I don't actually see any grown-ups...

Mash: That's true. I haven't seen a single adult yet.

Mash: Since this village appears to rely on agriculture for its survival, it may be that everyone of working age is just out in the fields...

Mash: ...but if that's the case,then why aren't there any elderly people around?

Goredolf: What...? Is that true?

Gerda: Well of course it's mostly children here. That's how it is everywhere, right?

Gerda: Besides, haha, you're so funny, Lady Mash. Everyone knows the elderly are just from legends.

Gerda: Of course you're not going to find any in a village. I mean...

Mash: ...?

Gerda: ...every grown-up leaves when they turn twenty-five, right?

Fujimaru 1: ...What?

Gerda: Yes?

Fujimaru 2: As in, leaves the village?

Gerda: Of course.

Mash: ...Huh...?

Goredolf: Wh-what in the world are you saying? They couldn't possibly survive out there, what with all the giants roaming about.

Gerda: Yes, I know.

Gerda: Every grown-up with a ten-year-old child leaves once they turn twenty-five and gets eaten by a giant.

Gerda: So nobody ever lives past twenty-five.

Gerda: And if you haven't had a child by fifteen,then you have to go too.

Gerda: I've heard that's true for every village. At least, all the villages from 1 to 100.

Mash: ...!

Goredolf: Wh...what...?'re telling us there are NO adults over the age of twenty-five there? None!?

Goredolf: And that people who turn fifteen without having children have to leave to die!?

Gerda: Uh-huh. Children and the grown-ups raising them are the only ones allowed to live in the hundred villages the Goddess and her envoys made for us, after all.

Fujimaru 1: There's...There's nobody over twenty-five?

Fujimaru 2: (Speechless)

Gerda: ......

Gerda: U-um, Lady Mash? [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru?

Gerda: Mr. Chubby...?

Gerda: ...I'm sorry, I don't understand. Why are you all so shocked?

Gerda: That's just how it is! It's the same everywhere, right?

Gerda: I'm turning fifteen in two years, so if I don't have any children by then, splat! That'll be it for me.

Goredolf: This is absurd. Everything you're saying is ridiculous. Well, the way your mind works is, too!

Goredolf: Do you even grasp what you're saying!? You're telling us there are only a hundred people in each village?

Goredolf: That you have to die if you don't have a child before you turn fifteen? That you'll die in two years?

Goredolf: Are you some kind of homunculus!? How can you say things like that as if they were normal!? You even look happy about it!

Fou: Fou...Fooouuu...

Gerda: Huh? You too, Fou? What happened?

Gerda: Why do you sound so sad all of a sudden...?

Gerda: Oh no. Did I say something to offend you again? Uh-oh, now what do I do...

Koyanskaya: What an elegant castle you have here. I like it very much.

Koyanskaya: It's wonderfully designed, of course,but I also love your choice of materials.

Koyanskaya: It's made completely out of ice, after all. No human could ever live here, no matter how beautiful it is.

Koyanskaya: The perfect witch's castle–something humankind yearns for, but can never hope to reach.

Koyanskaya: You really do have excellent taste, Your Majesty.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Who said this was made to my tastes?

Koyanskaya: Oh my. You mean it isn't? Does that mean you'd prefer something more typical, like Cinderella's castle?

Queen of Ice and Snow: “Cinder...Ella”? I've never heard the name,but she certainly sounds interesting.

Queen of Ice and Snow: She must have lived a life full of hope and surprise, one far removed from the life of a woman of ice and snow like myself.

Koyanskaya: Oh yes, without a doubt!

Koyanskaya: The early part with her stepsisters abusing her is great, but then she comes out on top at the end and the stepsisters get their just deserts. It's a positively repulsive story♡

Koyanskaya: I'm just sooo relieved that you aren't like that,Your Majesty.

Koyanskaya: After all, you hate happy endings, don't you?

Koyanskaya: Just look at this cold, utilitarian world you've designed. It makes me want to friend you on Magebook.

Koyanskaya: I'd love to know just how many human lives you've seen come to a miserable end.

Koyanskaya: After all, you didn't build this castle for humanity to enjoy, did you, O Goddess?

Queen of Ice and Snow: No, I did not. This castle exists for me,not for the benefit of humans.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I will admit that Odin was a fine man in his own right, but he was also a god. He would never bestow upon me a castle designed to accommodate humans.

Queen of Ice and Snow: The Allfather would never concern himself with human weakness. The thought would never even cross his mind.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Indeed...

Queen of Ice and Snow: Humans are weak. Frail. So very fragile. Their lives are snuffed out by the mere passage of time.

Queen of Ice and Snow: That is why they will always need the boundless love of a god to sustain them.

Koyanskaya: Oh my...Love, you say...?

Koyanskaya: I guess I had you figured wrong after all. So that's how you're running this place.

Koyanskaya: You have a hundred villages with about a hundred residents in each, making for a worldwide population of no more than ten thousand people.

Koyanskaya: Under most circumstances they would just end up going extinct, but you've kept them around for generations without letting their numbers increase.

Koyanskaya: Their world revolves around the empty happiness of their daily lives, and the heartless suffering that comes right at the end.

Koyanskaya: There's no point in tormenting people like that. No wonder I've been so unmotivated here...

Koyanskaya: It turns out this place was filled with love all along. Couldn't possibly get further from my tastes!

Queen of Ice and Snow: ...Of course.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Humans must not die out. They too are my beloved children. They too survived the days of scorching flame.

Queen of Ice and Snow: As their god, I will never stop loving humans. I cannot speak to other worlds, but that is the way of this one.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I decided long ago that I would love my children for eternity. Why would I ever destroy them?

Koyanskaya: ...Then you really have no intention of destroying humans? Does that mean Your Majesty thinks they're worth protecting?

Queen of Ice and Snow: You certainly ask many strange questions, fox woman. I would never think to destroy them.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Every creature in my domain is treated the same way. Did I not tell you what that was?

Queen of Ice and Snow: It is a simple question...Do I kill them, or love them?

Koyanskaya: ...

Queen of Ice and Snow: If they are an enemy, then I kill them. If not, I love them. To be the mother of Scandinavia is to love all creatures, great and small.

Queen of Ice and Snow: None must die out. None shall die by my hand.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Even if Odin himself proved to be incapable of such a feat, I will never stop trying, no matter how many thousands of years it may take.

Queen of Ice and Snow: That said...

Koyanskaya: Yes?

Queen of Ice and Snow: ...That said, at times,the giants must be offered a sacrifice.

Kirschtaria: Ophelia. Your concerns proved to be well founded.

Kirschtaria: The Russian Lostbelt has been destroyed. It won't be much longer before it disappears entirely.

Kirschtaria: Now that world will never be capable of welcoming a new god. What a pity. All the more so given the strength of its history.

Kirschtaria: In regards to Kadoc, I said all I had to say during our meeting, so I won't be repeating myself here.

Kirschtaria: But I do need to commend you for your outstanding accuracy in predicting this outcome.

Ophelia: I...I didn't...You give me far too much credit, Lord Kirschtaria.

Kirschtaria: Ophelia. I want you to run your Lostbelt however you see fit.

Kirschtaria: Once the Tree of Emptiness has taken root in a world, it is not that world's king who will continue to develop it, but we Crypters.

Kirschtaria: In the end, that responsibility falls to us alone. We cannot delegate it to anyone else.

Kirschtaria: The Queen of Ice and Snow is both generous and cruel. I understand dealing with her must be quite stressful.

Kirschtaria: But I want you to persevere. I know you are more than capable of doing so.

Kirschtaria: You have your own fire burning inside you, yet you keep yourself as cold as ice. That is why I know I can trust you with Scandinavia.

Ophelia: I...With all due respect, Lord Kirschtaria...

Ophelia: ...I can't take any credit for predicting this. I was speaking solely based on my own feelings...

Ophelia: I'm so ashamed. Here you are praising me for keeping my cool, and I failed utterly to do so.

Kirschtaria: It's all right. What you said was exactly what Kadoc needed to hear. No amount of coolheaded logic was ever going to help him with his complex about me.

Kirschtaria: Your admonition was far more effective than any encouragement I could have given him, even if it did come too late.

Kirschtaria: At any rate, none of the other Crypters know that Russia has fallen.

Kirschtaria: I only heard about it from Caenis,and you from Koyanskaya.

Kirschtaria: Akuta has cut off all communications. It seems her Lostbelt's king is quite a find.

Kirschtaria: After all, even Akuta of all people couldn't help but frown when she made her report. I even heard her sigh.

Kirschtaria: I can only imagine her Lostbelt's king must be either extremely unruly, or extremely daring. I would love to speak with them myself at some point.

Ophelia: Hinako, sighing...? That is a surprise...

Ophelia: I never once saw her so much as crack a smile,even around Peperoncino...

Ophelia: ...That aside, shouldn't we tell the other Crypters about Kadoc?

Kirschtaria: No need for that. His failure has no impact on their work, after all.

Kirschtaria: Given that Peperoncino's Lostbelt has an Alter Ego,it's only a matter of time until he learns about it...

Kirschtaria: ...but Beryl's Lostbelt is nearly on the verge of disappearing itself, so I imagine he has his hands full just keeping things going.

Ophelia: ...Are you sure we can trust Beryl?

Ophelia: The man is a criminal, a murderer. He kills just for the fun of it. He is a disgrace to humanity.

Ophelia: I don't see how a killer known as “Werewolf” and despised throughout the Clock Tower could ever hope to successfully expand a Lostbelt...

Kirschtaria: ...All that is part of why I trust him to uphold his end, Ophelia.

Kirschtaria: Beryl is just as good at deceiving himself as he is others. The more distasteful he finds a job, the more earnestly he will work to see it done.

Kirschtaria: As for Kadoc, there's no need for you to concern yourself with his well-being. Just focus on getting rid of Chaldea.

Kirschtaria: I have every confidence you can do it. You're far more capable than me when it comes to combat, as your miraculous eye can even wound Servants.

Kirschtaria: The Clock Tower authority figures are gone. They have no sway in this world. No one will hold you back anymore.

Kirschtaria: You are free to use your power however you like. Your eye is no longer that of a shunned child.

Ophelia: ...Thank you for saying so, Lord Kirschtaria. I will bear that in mind.

Kirschtaria: Your Scandinavian Lostbelt is a rare and important one, particularly given that one of the old gods still resides there.

Kirschtaria: What's more, she is benevolent. Having her accept and support our new world would be a tremendous asset.

Kirschtaria: I have high hopes that you will be able to convince her, Ophelia.

Ophelia: Thank you, Lord Kirschtaria. I won't let you down.

Kirschtaria: Oh, yes, I almost forgot. Caenis should be paying you a visit soon. Treat him as you like.

Ophelia: Thank you for your consideration, Lord Kirschtaria. But, I'm afraid I have to tell you something...

Ophelia: Caenis is a Divine Spirit, and beyond my ability to keep in check. I hope you'll forgive me if I'm unable to stop her from clashing with my Lostbelt's king.

Kirschtaria: So you're concerned that the queen and your knight may end up destroying Caenis's Spirit Origin?

Kirschtaria: I see.

Kirschtaria: That's most encouraging to hear, Ophelia. This only reaffirms my decision to entrust you with this Lostbelt.

Kirschtaria: I look forward to your next report. I expect that will be when new seeds have formed.

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: ...Wodime. Lord Kirschtaria Wodime...

Sigurd: That's a woman's face.

Sigurd: I've seen faces like that before. Heh, heh.

Sigurd: I may not know any personally,but I can't help but remember them.

Sigurd: So, you really are a woman at heart, Ophelia.

Ophelia: ...You're not meant to use your spirit form for peeping. Your job is only to keep me safe.

Ophelia: Don't misunderstand me. You are my knight–my sword and shield.

Ophelia: I never asked or wanted anything more from you, and that's never going to change. Know your place, Saber.

Ophelia: Or do I need to remind you about my Sirius Light?

Sigurd: Hmph.

Sigurd: I know I'm supposed to protect you and kill your enemies, Ophelia. But is that necessary here?

Sigurd: Yes, humans have demonstrated incredible power before. At times, they've rebelled against gods, tricked giants, and even killed dragons.

Sigurd: But not here.

Sigurd: The humans here aren't people anymore. They're livestock. None of them are any threat to you.

Sigurd: These humans used to be just like the ones in Proper Human History: weak, transient beings whose only purpose was to be our prey.

Ophelia: ...This world belongs to a goddess.

Ophelia: Even if there are less than ten thousand humans here,it is still a pure land ruled by a goddess of old.

Ophelia: Lord Kirschtaria even said it could end up the last Lostbelt left standing...

Ophelia: The fact that a goddess rules it also means it's the perfect place to experiment.

Ophelia: That's why this Lostbelt has so much potential. In fact, it is far more than the sum of its parts.

Sigurd: Oh?

Ophelia: ...In terms of potential, at any rate.

Ophelia: If we can grow our tree to maturity, we might be able to breathe new life into humanity and nature alike.

Ophelia: I don't care how much contempt you have for humanity as a result of your origins and temperament.

Ophelia: All I care about is that you don't let your guard down. Again: you're my shield and my sword. Don't forget that.

Ophelia: You and I share the same responsibility:

Ophelia: We must grow this Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness to full maturity. That is your sole concern.

Sigurd: Hmph.

Sigurd: I've never been much of a gardener, but if you insist, Ophelia, I guess I've got no choice.

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: (I can still feel his gaze...I guess my knight will always be peeping on me, no matter how many times I tell him not to. )

Ophelia: I can tell you're still there, smirking at me from behind my back. Just how long are you planning on watching me?

Ophelia: I know I said you're my knight,but that doesn't mean–

Ophelia: Oh...

Ophelia: You again, huh. The way you completely lack any presence, I mistook you for a Servant.

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: Is there something you want to say to me?

Ophelia: I certainly hope you're not going to comment on my...womanhood, like Saber did...

???: ...

Ophelia: ...I can't hear anything.

Ophelia: What's your name? Am I ever going to get to hear what you sound like?

Ophelia: I'm...Well, you already know my name.


Fou: Fou, fo, fooou?

Mash: It's no use. I can't seem to get through to the Border.

Fujimaru 1: I wonder why we got through earlier...

Fujimaru 2: Well, nothing we can do now. Why don't we call it a day?

Mash: ...Yes. You're right, Senpai.

Da Vinci: Hey! There you are!!!

Da Vinci: Hi guys! Can you all see my astonishingly beautiful face? Hey, Fou! You're here too, huh!

Fou: Foo fo fou, fooou!

Mash: Da Vinci!

Da Vinci: I doubt we have much time to talk,so I'll keep this brief.

Da Vinci: I've pieced together what's going on here using the data collected with my Mystic Code drone and the info Gordy gave me. Oh, he's asleep now, by the way.

Da Vinci: The last thing he said was, “Grr, enough of this! I'm going to rest in the captain's room! Wake me when it's time for breakfast! ”

Fou: Fou fou...

Da Vinci: Now then, there are basically three different kinds of beings here.

Da Vinci: And by “beings,” it's worth noting that I'm talking about strong, dominant creatures, not necessarily those of intelligence who have formed civilizations.

Da Vinci: All right, so.

Da Vinci: First, we have the giants: tough, exceedingly strong predators. Second, we have humans, who can't survive outside their villages.

Da Vinci: And third, we have envoys and their goddess. Seems safe to say both are well above humans on the proverbial totem pole in this Lostbelt.

Da Vinci: I'm sure the ice beasts are stronger than humans too, but they appear to be the giants' pets, and seem to have no real will of their own, so I've left them out.

Da Vinci: So far so good?

Da Vinci: As for regular creatures,they seem to be almost nonexistent here.

Da Vinci: Ordinary plants and animals just barely exist in the occasional flower garden...Each of these fields seems to be a warm place that just happened to be perfectly situated between the fire and ice zones.

Da Vinci: So, putting all that aside as an exception to the three broad categories...

Da Vinci: this Lostbelt, I'm afraid it looks like humanity is nowhere near the top of the food chain.

Da Vinci: If anything, they seem to be at the very bottom.

Mash: The bottom...

Da Vinci: So I don't think we should be counting these humans as possible additions to our ranks. I doubt either their civilization or magecraft are all that developed.

Da Vinci: I mean, you haven't seen a single machine since you got there, right? And that girl you ran into out in the wilderness didn't even have a communication device, let alone a ward against giants.

Da Vinci: The humans that live here simply have no means of surviving outside of these villages.

Mash: ...Yes, that all makes sense.

Mash: At least for this village...Village 23,the outside world may as well not exist.

Mash: We did run into Gerda outside, but that was an unusual case. She would never have left if circumstances hadn't forced her to.

Mash: The only reason this village ever opens its gates is to...

Da Vinci: Right. To thin the herd.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Da Vinci: As peaceful as this place looks, now that we have a clearer picture of what's going on, I'd say it's just as cruel as Russia, though in a different way.

Da Vinci: We still don't know much about these envoys and their goddess, who I assume are more or less running the show here.

Da Vinci: We also don't have any idea whether they might be willing to help us.

Da Vinci: It's very possible they may already be working with the Crypters, so keep that in mind.

Da Vinci: Aw crap, we're losing our connection again...All right, one last bit of info.

Da Vinci: We still haven't found anywhere you could use to summon Servants, so I'm afraid you'll need to keep scouting a–

Fou: Fou, fooouuu...

Gerda: Lady Mash! Fou! [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru!

Gerda: ...Huh? Were you just talking to a tiny person?

Gerda: Oh! It must have been Mr. Chub!

Mash: Well, um, yes, we were talking to someone,but I'm afraid we just lost the connection...

Gerda: Connection? What's being connected?

Gerda: Hehe, you know so many things I've never even heard about, Lady Mash. And you have so many things I've never seen before. Having you around is so much fun!

Gerda: I wasn't sure if an envoy like you would like my cooking,but you even said my bread and fish were really tasty!

Gerda: You're so kind, and strong, and just...wonderful! I just love spending time with you.

Gerda: Will you stay tomorrow night too? I know you must have work, since tomorrow's a special day and all, but if you don't mind...

Mash: Um...I'm sorry, but I really don't think we're the kind of envoy you're thinking of...

Gerda: Hehe, suuure you're not. Wait. Did you get here a day early, all because of me?

Gerda: O-oooh...if you did, then I apologize! The last thing I want to do is make trouble for you.

Mash: N-no, it's not that. S-Senpai? How can I clear up this misunderstanding...?

Fujimaru 1: I don't think we can. She really thinks we're envoys.

Fujimaru 2: I'm not sure there's anything we can say that would help her understand.

Mash: Yes...I suppose you're right. In that case,I'll hold off on trying to convince her.

Mash: ...That said, there IS something I still want to ask her. Is that all right with you, Senpai?

Fujimaru 1: Go for it.

Fujimaru 2: I've got a lot of things I'm curious about, too.

Mash: Thank you, Senpai.

Mash: ...Gerda, could I talk to you for a bit?

Gerda: What is it, Lady Mash?

Mash: Well...You see...

Goredolf: ...Hold it. I'll ask the questions here.

Fujimaru 1: Director? You're awake?

Fujimaru 2: I thought we'd lost our connection again...

Goredolf: I was just looking to see if we had some sleeping pills when I heard our connection was back online.

Goredolf: In fact, I've been listening in for the last half a minute or so.

Goredolf: I'll take it from here, Mash. Between the two of us, it's clear who's the better negotiator.

Goredolf: Ahem. You there, child. This is a question of a rather personal nature. You may answer it however you like.

Gerda: Huh?

Goredolf: I'd like to ask you something.

Gerda: What is it, Lady Mash?

Goredolf: You've obviously been living here in this Lostbelt–I mean, village, your whole life...

Goredolf: How do you feel about it?

Gerda: ???

Mash: ......

Goredolf: Does it weigh on you? Do you ever think about your future? About what's going to happen when you grow up?

Goredolf: Don't you wish you could see the world outside your tiny village, without having to live in fear of giants?

Goredolf: Haven't you ever wished to be free...?

Gerda: Future...Free...

Gerda: World...?

Mash: Gerda.

Mash: In this world, no matter how healthy you are,you'll never get to live past your twenties.

Mash: How can you be so cheerful about that? How does it not...worry you?

Mash: ...

Gerda: H-huh? P-please cheer up, Lady Mash. You too, Mr. Chub. Why are you both so sad?

Gerda: I, um, I'm sorry. I wish I could answer you, but...

Gerda: ...I'm afraid I don't understand what either of you are talking about.

Gerda: Maybe it's because I never learned how to read or write well...What do you mean by “future”...?

Gerda: I mean, I think I know what the word means. It means the time after tomorrow, right?

Gerda: Hmm...This is hard...

Mash: ......

Goredolf: ...That hard, huh?

Gerda: I, um, I know what “free” means, too.

Gerda: It's when you're not stuck inside your home or tied down with rope, right?

Gerda: In that case, I AM free! I can go anywhere I want in the whole village!

Gerda: I can go to the farmland in the village center, or to the pond...and I can visit anyone's house I like!

Gerda: I can even go to Laura's house and see the new baby if I want.

Mash: In my...

Mash: In our world, people get to live for a long time.

Gerda: Even longer than twenty-five?

Mash: Yes. Much, much longer...Some people live longer than others, of course, but...

Goredolf: That's right. Many live to be eighty, or ninety,or even more. And they don't just have children.

Goredolf: Some people also have grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. If they live long enough, of course.

Goredolf: Some people are still unfortunate enough to have their lives cut short by illness or accident, but that's a long way off from no one ever living past twenty-five.

Goredolf: The only ones destined to die early are homunculi.... Not that they're any concern of mine, though.

Gerda: Grandchildren...Great-grandchildren...

Goredolf: Indeed. And even if one never has children or grandchildren, many people still choose to spend their long lives with people they love.

Goredolf: Even if they never have families of their own, some people spend their lives among friends and comrades, working towards goals of their own choosing.

Goredolf: Grr, why am I even talking about this!? It's not as though we mages get to live ordinary, happy lives!

Goredolf: But fine! If no one else will say it, then I will!

Goredolf: What's wrong with you!? What's wrong with ALL of you!?

Goredolf: How can you be happy about a life doomed to be cut short!? How are you not angry!? Or even afraid!?

Goredolf: The Yaga may have had to survive in brutal conditions,but at least they were still free to live to old age!

Goredolf: Grrr, this whole thing really bothers me! And now our connection is acting up, too! I'm going to bed! Goodbye!

Fujimaru 1: Director Goredolf...

Fujimaru 2: (At a loss for words)

Fou: Fo...

Mash: ...Mr. Chub is right, Gerda.

Mash: Our world was very complicated,but it also offered us endless possibilities.

Mash: I think that's because we were able to grow up agreeing and disagreeing with all kinds of people throughout our lives.

Mash: ...That's how humans have always been. I'm sure it's no different here in Scandinavia.

Mash: People can do anything they set their mind to. I think that's what it really means to be free.

Mash: In practice, there may be far more things we can't do than we can.

Mash: But, even so...I think...that's what everyone wants.

Fujimaru 1: Mash...

Fujimaru 2: (Stay silent)

Mash: Gerda...

Mash: Is there...anything in this world that you would wish for...?

Gerda: Wish for?

Gerda: W-well, uh...Um...Let's see...

Gerda: I got the medicinal herbs I was looking for,and tonight's dinner was yummy...

Gerda: So, um, I actually can't think of anything else I want right now.

Gerda: U-usually I do, though! Really!

Gerda: Sometimes I want to catch a big fish at the pond, or I want my bread to turn out really well...Those sorts of things.

Gerda: Oh, sometimes I wish I could see another beautiful rainbow again, like I did that one time...

Fou: Fooou...

Gerda: I'm sorry. I'm really sorry.

Gerda: I know I'm not giving you good answers,but I don't really understand your questions...

Gerda: Still, everything you said sounds lovely. Getting to be an elderly person, doing anything you want...

Mash: ......

Mash: ...Not at all.

Mash: I'm the one who should be apologizing, Gerda. I didn't mean to confuse you.

Mash: ...I'm sorry.

Gerda: Oh no, please don't be! I'm not confused! I really did think it was lovely!

Gerda: I may not have understood everything you meant...but I did think it sounded absolutely amazing.

Gerda: It was just so...I can't even begin to imagine it all! That's never happened to me before.

Gerda: I guess it's true what they said about envoys being difficult to understand.

Gerda: There's still so much I don't know about children, but you said in your world, there are also grandchildren, and...great-grandchildren?

Gerda: I can't imagine getting to see so many generations of children...I guess that's something you can do if you get to be elderly.

Gerda: I've never thought about that sort of thing before. After all...

Narration: After all...

Narration: ...nobody can ever live that long...


Fou: Fou, foooooou!

Mash: Good morning, Fou. You're up awfully early today.

Fou: Fou fou fou, fo.

Mash: N-no, I didn't have any trouble sleeping at all. Since I'm a Demi-Servant, I always wake up early.

Mash: Sleep deprivation is one of the worst things you can do for your health, so you need to make sure you get plenty of sleep, Fou.

Fujimaru 1: Morning, Mash.

Mash: Good morning. I see you're up early too, Senpai.... Did you have trouble sleeping?

Fujimaru 2: That goes for you too, Mash.

Mash: Thank you, Senpai. But I'm fine. My magical energy is fully replenished, and Ortinax is working perfectly.

Mash: Its auto-maintenance function worked so well that it almost feels fresh out of Da Vinci's workshop.

Fou: Fo? Fo fou?

Mash: Yes, I'm doing fine.

Mash: This morning, we'll be going around the village to find out whatever information we can, and in the afternoon, we'll be setting out to explore more of Scandinavia.

Mash: I was hoping to learn more about the land around here,but I'm not sure they even have any maps...

Mash: Come to think of it, I wonder where Gerda went? She wasn't anywhere to be found in her house, right?

Fou: Fooou, fau fau!

Mash: Maybe she had some errands she needed to–Wait, huh!?

Mash: I guess I'd better go after him. Fou! You're not supposed to run off on your own!

Mash: Got you!

Fou: Fo. Fau fau, kyaaau!

Mash: Huh? There's something happening over there?

Children: Congratulations! Congratulations!

C:Children: It's great you all made it to today. Thanks for everything! I'm so glad the Goddess brought us together!

D:Children: Say hi to everyone else when you get there. We had to say goodbye to three people just last year...

C:Children: Here, these flowers are for you. All the boys grew them together. We hope you can use them to decorate your new home!

D:Children: Hey! We girls helped too, you know! Ugh, this is exactly why I hate boys. You're such jerks!

C:Children: Hey, no saying “jerk. ” You know we're not allowed to use any bad words today.

D:Children: O-oh, I'm sorry...J-just forget it! I didn't even mean to say it!

E:Grown-Ups: Thank you, everyone. Thank you so much. It makes us really happy, getting a bouquet from you like this.

F:Grown-Ups: It really does. You all follow the Goddess's teachings so well, and have grown up to be such wonderful children. We're so glad.

F:Grown-Ups: Make sure you all get along even after we've left. We can't wait to see you again when you come join us one day.

F:Grown-Ups: ...Take care of yourselves, everyone.

Mash: Look...

Mash: There's a few grown-ups there. I guess they really do exist, even though we didn't see any yesterday. It looks like the children are giving them something.

Mash: Flowers...?

Gerda: Those are special flowers. It took six months for all the children to grow them. They're really important.

Mash: Why's that?

Gerda: You can't go to Valhalla without them. Only souls with proof that they were loved can go there.

Gerda: The Goddess decided that long, looong ago. So long it would make your head spin!

Gerda: So that's why all the children grow flowers. It's our job.

Mash: Valhalla...?

Fujimaru 1: Isn't that...

Mash: Yes...It's one of the lands of the dead in Norse mythology.

Fujimaru 2: That's where certain people go when they die in Norse mythology, right?

Mash: ...Specifically, it's the place where the souls of chosen heroes gather. At least, it's supposed to be.

Mash: Valhalla. Odin's palace. Hall of Warriors. In Norse legend, it's said that only souls chosen by the Valkyries can ever go there.

Mash: Of course, that also means the only people who can go there are, by definition, dead.

Mash: A land...of the dead...

Mash: Then, when Gerda said today was special...does that mean–

Gerda: Oh my, oh my, that's right. I haven't thanked you nearly enough! I haven't, have I?

Gerda: Lady Mash. [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru. Fou.

Gerda: If you hadn't saved me from those giants, they'd have squished me before I had a chance to get my own bouquet.

Gerda: Then my soul would have just wandered around forever,and I'd never get to go to Valhalla! So...

Gerda: So thank you so, so, SOOO much! I really can't ever thank you enough!

Mash: ...!

Fou: Fou...

Gerda: ...That big gate is the exit.

Gerda: I know we used it to enter the village when we came back from picking medicinal herbs yesterday, but that's not really what it's for.

Gerda: It's really meant for leaving. Just leaving.

Gerda: It's where the chosen grown-ups go on the ordained day. Nobody ever uses it to come in.

Grown-Ups: Envoy, O envoy. We have come to offer you everything,in accordance with the word of the Heavenly Mother.

Mash: ......

Mash: The adults are prostrating themselves...

Mash: It looks like...they're performing some kind of ritual...

Gerda: They always do that. They're supposed to.

Gerda: I'll have to do that someday, too. It might be in two years or twelve years, but one day I'll have to.

Gerda: You have to bow your head, close your eyes,and count, I think it was three tens?

Gerda: Anyway, once you finish counting, that's when one comes. From the gate? No, from the sky!

Fou: Fo, fou...!

Mash: The sky...?

Gerda: ...Twenty-four, twenty-five, twenty-six, twenty-seven,twenty-eight, twenty-nine, thirty. Look, over there!

Voice from the Sky: Humans.

Voice from the Sky: O humans, today is the ordained day. O humans,today is the day your lives shall be taken.

Mash: Ah!

H:Voice from the Sky: Know that this is an act of love. Know that through this act, the last remaining deity–the Goddess–extends her hand to you, out of love.

H:Voice from the Sky: O humans, bow your heads. Give thanks to the ice, the snow, and the light.

D:Children: Envoy! O envoy! O glorious Valkyrie, gleaming bright! Please take the grown-ups with you!

C:Children: They followed all of the Goddess's teachings and raised us! The ones who couldn't raise us played with us until they were fourteen!

D:Children: None of them are bad people! So please...

Children: Please take them with you to Valhalla!

Fou: Fau! Fooou!

Mash: Envoy...One who takes souls to Valhalla...

Mash: They're here! Envoy...Angel...Wait, no! I'm sensing an extremely powerful magical energy signal coming from the sky!

Mash: They're either a pseudo-god or a demigod, but either way, their magical energy is incredibly powerful!

Mash: This must be one of the beings known in Proper Human History as the daughters of Odin...the Valkyries!

Envoy: O humans, rejoice. I shall open the great gate for you,in accordance with divine law.

Envoy: Walk through it. Do not hesitate. Meet your end as sacrifices to the giants.

Envoy: Do that, and your souls shall be taken to the Hall of Warriors, though you have never known battle.

Envoy: Rejoice, humans, and be glad. This is love, bestowed upon you by the one true Goddess.

E:Grown-Ups: Thank you, O envoy. We are endlessly grateful for the blessings you and the Goddess have bestowed upon us.

F:Grown-Ups: We will go to meet our end. Please, open the gate for us...

Envoy: ...Very well, it shall be done. And so, your lives shall end!

Fujimaru 1: Hold it!

Envoy: ...?

Envoy: Humans, what is this strange sound? This is astonishing; it is a crime most grave. Who would interrupt this most sacred ritual?

Envoy: This ritual marks the solemn, glorious end of humans' lives. It is not to be trifled with.

Mash: ...Please wait, envoy. Or rather, Valkyrie.

Gerda: H-huh? Wh-what are you doing, Lady Mash? You're not supposed to go against tradition on the ordained day!

Mash: ......

Mash: Valkyrie, you said these grown-ups would go to Valhalla...To Odin's palace, the Hall of Warriors.

Mash: In Norse mythology, Valhalla is supposed to be the final resting place for the souls of brave heroes.

Mash: But these people don't even have swords,let alone armor! They're not warriors!

Mash: And you mean to send them to their deaths? To be killed by giants? Even though they worship you...!?

Envoy: ...Heathens...

Envoy: Our shared records reported that heathens had invaded our holy land–and now here you stand.

Envoy: In that case, it falls to me to execute you...

Mash: Wai–

Mash: Khh...! ...Haaa...!

Envoy: Humans, know that it is futile to resist. Humans, know that the will to resist is itself a grave offense.

Envoy: You two are...Ah, yes. I see now.

Envoy: You have passed the age of fifteen without having children, haven't you? Then you must die.

Envoy: Your souls will never ascend to Valhalla. You will simply be consumed by giants and die, loveless and alone.

Mash: Loveless...!?

Mash: We don't know this Scandinavia. We have no way of knowing what it is you value.

Mash: But I do know what you're doing here is not love. It's cruel!

Mash: And I don't just mean offering innocent people up to giants! I mean ending children's lives before they've had a chance to grow up...!

Mash: And I will not just look the other way while that happens here! ...Master!

Fujimaru 1: You said it! Let's do this, Mash!

C:Mash: Right! Preparing for battle!

Gerda: No, Lady Mash, please...! Envoys aren't supposed to argue with each other...!

C:Mash: I'm sorry, Gerda! But I'm not an envoy!

C:Mash: That's why I can–why I WILL fight her on this!


Mash: ...!

Envoy: ...How? How can a human defeat an envoy?

Mash: I may be human, but I'm also a Demi-Servant who once possessed the power of a Heroic Spirit...

Mash: The sort who is exactly the kind of hero whose soul Valkyries would have desired, at least in Proper Human History.

Mash: Given your nature, you can't ignore the remains of that hero inside me. That's why...

Envoy: The soul of a hero...

Envoy: ...Two thousand and several hundred years since I was manufactured...and never once...did I see one...

Mash: ...Target has disappeared. The Ortinax's output drop is within tolerance. I'm still good to go!

Fou: Fou, fau kyaaau!

Mash: She wasn't a Servant. She did give off a magical energy signal...but she wasn't summoned here!

Mash: Which would mean, here in 2020,this Scandinavian Lostbelt is home to...!

Gerda: There are...lots and lots of envoys...

Gerda: Lots, and lots, and lots!

Gerda: Wh-why did you do that, Lady Mash!? How could you fight another envoy!?

Gerda: The...the Goddess is going to be really mad...

E:Children: The envoy's gone...Just vanished into thin air...Is that even possible...?

F:Children: H-huh? Now what's going to happen with the ritual...?

E:Children: This isn't right! It doesn't make sense! We gave them the bouquet, but the envoy never opened the gate!

F:Children: We can't open it ourselves, right? Gerda did yesterday,but we can't do that on the ordained day, right?

G:Grown-Ups: Oh no...This is terrible! The envoy's gone! She was supposed to take us to Valhalla!

H:Grown-Ups: It's okay! The envoys are servants of the Goddess, right? Even if one disappears, more will come in her place. There, look...!

H:Grown-Ups: See that light in the sky?

Fou: Fou, fou fo fooou! Kyaaau!

Mash: I'm sensing lots of new magical energy signals in the sky! ...The Ortinax should be fine to handle a series of consecutive battles!

Mash: Amalgam Goad is in good shape. It should stand up to combat, at a minimum.

Mash: It also seems that the envoys view the people of these villages as something to be protected.

Mash: When we fought, it seemed like she didn't want to hurt the people or damage the village.

Mash: I'm willing to bet that the next envoys will probably take the same approach...

Mash: ......

Mash: ...I'm sorry. I really should be apologizing for all this...

Mash: I was foolish...reckless...

Fujimaru 1: Hey, it's okay. I would've said the same.

Fujimaru 2: I had the same thing in mind. You just beat me to it.

Mash: Thank you, Master. Multiple magical energy signals approaching quickly from above. Here they come!

Mash: Initiating combat while maintaining the Ortinax's output! Requesting orders and backup, Master!


Mash: ...(Huff, gasp...Huff, huff, phew)

Mash: ...All envoys have disappeared. The village remains unharmed!

Mash: I never imagined so many would show up all at once like this...

Mash: The Ortinax's output has dropped, but the auto-maintenance function should restore it in ten seconds.

Mash: As long as we have that much time before enemy reinforcements arrive, we should be fine!

Fou: Fou, fou fo! Kyakyaaau!

Mash: ...Even more magical energy signals are gathering in the sky. I believe they mean to attack after gathering enough of their forces.

Mash: The Ortinax's auto-maintenance function should finish in time, but...

Mash: ...the situation could change significantly, depending on how long the envoys keep attacking...Khh...

Fujimaru 1: And we won't be getting any help from the Border.

Fujimaru 2: We'll just have to hold out on our own as best we can...

Mash: ...Right.

Mash: (There's a pretty tremendous difference in firepower between them...)

Mash: (If another Valkyrie with the same amount of magical energy as that first one shows up...)

Mash: (...will Senpai and I still be able to win...? )

Gerda: U-um, Lady Mash? Lady Mash? P-please stop?

Gerda: Please don't fight with the other envoys. Besides, you're clearly in terrible pain. Please...?

Mash: ......

Mash: ...Gerda, I–

Gerda: Once they take the flowers, the grown-ups are supposed to go through the gate. That's how it's supposed to be! That's how it's always been!

Gerda: Once they do, the giants show up and squish them in no time.

Gerda: I've seen it from the crack in the gate lots of times. Smoosh. They don't say anything, they can't do anything...

Gerda: ...But that's okay. I'm not afraid.

Gerda: I know I'll get to go to Valhalla as long as the envoy is watching me! That's what the Goddess decided!

Gerda: There's nothing wrong with that. It might be just a teeny, tiny bit scary...

Gerda: But once I'm squished, it'll all be over,and I'll be fine. So–

Fujimaru 1: There's nothing fine about that!

Fujimaru 1: Nobody's dying on my watch if I can help it! Nobody!

Mash: ...Senpai...

Gerda: But why?

Gerda: This is how it's been since forever and ever...

Mash: ......

Mash: ...I'm sorry, Gerda. But I'm not putting down my shield.

Mash: Even if this is the way things are done here...Even if it's what you all want...I...

Mash: WE...don't want to give up on anything, on anyone!

Mash: Whether it's one life, or two, or millions...!

Mash: Magical energy signals! Senpai, multiple enemies are diving towards us simultaneously! They're going to use all their Noble Phantasms at–

Mash: Some sort of powerful light shot toward the envoys...A gunshot!?

Mash: No...It's cannon fire!

Narration: I turn to see flames burning bright.

Narration: No, not flames...A man. A human inferno.

Narration: The titanic cannon he holds in his arms is pointed towards the sky. His smile is as dazzling as the first rays of the morning sun.

Narration: A true man among men, standing taller and prouder than anyone else nearby.

Good Fellow: You called? ...Yeah, you did. No need to say anything. I can tell.

Good Fellow: Well! Here! I! Am!


Good Fellow: How do you like my little cannon here!? C'est magnifique, non? Haha! Nothing better than a fine gentleman like myself fighting off a swarm of angels!

Good Fellow: Well, I guess these aren't angels, huh? No wings.

Good Fellow: No, wait, scratch that. Didn't angels originally have wings because of some old winged Egyptian god or something like that?

Good Fellow: Ah well. At this point,I guess it doesn't matter either way!

Envoys: I see...

Envoys: Though they were just mass-produced models, this one can blast away several at once. I also see he is working with the individual known as Mash Kyrielight.

Envoys: Servants are beings that threaten the Goddess's rule. Thus, they are to be eradicated, not loved.

Envoys: Begin link. Begin link. All nearby envoys, begin link. None may defy Her...

Good Fellow: Hahaha, so you're gonna huddle together and make yourselves an even bigger target? Well that's just fine by me!

Good Fellow: Go ahead, I'll blow you out of the sky! Haven't you managed to put together that anything in the air is just a target for my incredible firepower?

Mash: ...A Servant!

Mash: And not one dependent on this Lostbelt's magical energy, either. He must be a Heroic Spirit from Proper Human History!

Mash: Master! That man is the first we've met here in Scandinavia to–

Good Fellow: ...Are heroes born from their accomplishments?

Good Fellow: Nah, it's not that. They're born 'cause the people want them to be born.

Good Fellow: Trust me, as a hero who's gone from the top of the heap to the bottom of the barrel, I know a thing or two!

Gerda: ...A hero...?

Gerda: Who...are you...?

Good Fellow: What's that, mademoiselle? Oh, you will become a fine beauty when you're older, I can tell. You want to know who I am?

Good Fellow: Well, let's see...

Good Fellow: As long as someone out there's got their hopes up, or wishes things were different somehow, I'm the guy who makes all their dreams come true.

Good Fellow: I'm the guy who sees the stars shining bright in this young [♂ man /♀ lady] and [♂ his /♀ her] trusty partner as they fight against the fate of the world!

Good Fellow: Go ahead and lead the way, kids from Proper Human History! My cannon's yours to command!

Good Fellow: This is what they call lending a helping hand! Let your magical energy loose! Don't hold back! Let's get this done with style!

Fujimaru 1: Your helping hand couldn't have come at a better time!

Fujimaru 2: What do you think we've been doing so far!?

Good Fellow: Damn right! Now let's gooo!


Good Fellow: Hraaah!

Good Fellow: Take this!

Good Fellow: Hraaaaaaaaaaaah! Break 'em! Smash 'em! Make your way through!

H:Mash: He's opened a huge hole in the formation of envoys! Many of them have started to disperse!

Envoys: ...The situation has worsened.... Inexplicable.

Envoys: ...That man's magical energy is not unlimited. He should have already run out after so many large bombardments, yet he still remains operational.

Envoys: The same is true of the Demi-Servant. How? How is this possible? Why do they still fight?

Envoys: Inexplicable. Inexplicable. Continued combat may result in indeterminate losses on our side.

Envoys: We must return to seek the Goddess's counsel. Retreat. Retreat.

Mash: ...All remaining envoys appear to have left the area. Their magical energy signals have disappeared.

Mash: Th-the battle is...over, Sen...pai...

Mash: ...(Huff, huff, gasp)...Ah...There I go again...

Mash: ...I was far too reckless. Da Vinci's not going to be happy about this...

Fujimaru 1: Nothing we can do now except brace for yelling.

Fujimaru 2: What about the villagers...?

Gerda: I...That light was...amazing...I've never seen so many amazing things...

Gerda: You're amazing...mister...

Gerda: I couldn't believe what I was seeing...

Grown-Ups: ...?

Children: Huh? Huh???

Good Fellow: Haha. Nicely done, you two!

Good Fellow: You look pretty worn out right now, but I know that's not all you've got left in the tank!

Good Fellow: I can't promote you to general at our first meeting,but I can at least give you a medal or two!

Mash: E-excuse me! We really do appreciate your helping us out tremendously...

Mash: ...but do you think you could stop smacking Senpai on the back so hard...?

Good Fellow: Oh, was that hard? Sorry 'bout that! Old habits die hard, as they say.

Fujimaru 1: (Cough and hack)

Good Fellow: Sorry again. Here, how 'bout I give ya a back rub? Or are you all right now?

Fujimaru 1: (Cough, cough) Are you–

Good Fellow: That's right, Maître du Chaldea from Proper Human History! Oh, yeah, I forgot to introduce myself!

Good Fellow: Then, listen up! Humans, one day, your desires will become a rainbow emblazoned across the sky! Know why? 'Cause I'm here now!

Good Fellow: I don't know much about this Lostbelt business, but nobody messes with the people of Europe on my watch!

Good Fellow: That's right! I'm a man of infinite possibility! Wherever I go, I leave rainbows in my wake...

Good Fellow: I am Napoleon, an Archer! You're looking at the only hero of humanity in all of Scandinavia!

Section 5: Castle of Snow and Ice (Beginning)

Gerda: ...The gate won't open, will it?

Grown-Up: No, Gerda. It only opens on the ordained day. Assuming you stay here and don't go out again, at least.

Gerda: I won't. Nobody has a fever right now.

Grown-Up: You did a good deed, Gerda, so the Goddess and the envoys will forgive you. That they didn't punish you is proof enough of that, right?

Grown-Up: Still...the gate won't open...

Grown-Up: I wonder if we really will have to wait for the next ordained day to set off on our journey, like he said we would.

Gerda: This has never happened before...

Gerda: What's going to happen now...? It almost feels like I'm dreaming...

Grown-Up: An envoy only comes on the ordained day. The Goddess hasn't permitted them to descend from Valhalla any other time.

Grown-Up: At least, that's what that man with that huge metal thing said. Whether it's true or not is beyond me...

Grown-Up: Honestly, we're not sure what to do now either. It never even occurred to us that something like this could happen...

Grown-Up: Some are saying we should try to force the gate open now, but–

Gerda: You can't! You'll never get to go to Valhalla without an envoy!

Gerda: that case...

Gerda: ...maybe you could all just wait until next year?

Grown-Up: Yeah. I suppose we could.

Gerda: Of course you could!

Gerda: All the children were thinking how nice it would be to make the flower bed past the field a bit bigger.

Gerda: We'd all be so happy if the grown-ups helped us. I mean that, you know?

Gerda: ...So what do you say?

Napoleon: The fire on the mountains? Yeah, I have no idea what's going on with that, either.

Napoleon: The snow and ice at least make some sense,but the fire? I got nothin'.

Mash: Really? You know what's going on with the ice that covers the mountains, and the snow that covers all of Scandinavia?

Fou: Fou fou, fo fo.

Napoleon: Yeah, more or less. Might as well explain while we're taking a break!

Napoleon: I guess it's about time I told you the point of this march, anyway. Say, I never did tell you where I wanted to go after we left the village, did I?

Fujimaru 1: You didn't tell us anything.

Fujimaru 2: All you said was “Join me! ”

Napoleon: Haha, sorry 'bout that!

Napoleon: All right then, let's start at the beginning. You two know about the myth of Ragnarök, right?

Napoleon: Well, in this Lostbelt, it looks like the last war between the gods and giants still took place...

Napoleon: ...but, as you've likely figured out for yourselves,the Age of Gods didn't end here for some reason.

Napoleon: Thanks to that, civilization never developed, humans are still worshipping gods, and giants roam unchecked around the mountains.

Napoleon: Basically, for the last three thousand or so years, things have remained pretty much the same as they were back in 1000 B. C. , when the Norse Age of Gods was originally meant to end.

Napoleon: That's what led to this place heading down a sliiightly different path from the myth we know.

Fou: Fo, fou!

Mash: !

Mash: The Age of Gods, lasting into the present day...! Then, Director Goredolf and Da Vinci were right...

Napoleon: Yup. The real deal's right here in Scandinavia.

Napoleon: Didn't you hear the kids going on about “Goddess” this and “Goddess” that? Well, there you are.

Napoleon: She didn't die in Ragnarök or turn into a Divine Spirit. She's remained, intact, to this day.

Napoleon: Now, she rules this Lostbelt, using her hundred envoys as a go-between to keep both the giants and humans in check.

Napoleon: She's the last god in Scandinavia, and she's kept the Age of Gods going all this time.

Napoleon: She lives in the northern part of the Oslo Fjord, in a castle located in Proper Human History's old Oslo region.

Napoleon: The Queen of Scandinavia,who covered half its mountains in frost...

Napoleon: ...Scáthach-Skadi, Goddess of Snow and Ice.

Napoleon: The last remaining deity, and the one in charge of this entire Lostbelt.

Napoleon: We're not talking Servant here. We're talking full-blown, honest-to-goodness goddess.

Napoleon: I'm trying to get to her castle. That's probably where you'll find the Crypter and that Servant, too.

Napoleon: I bet it's also where that Paper Moon thing is,along with...what was it called again...

Napoleon: The Tree of Emptiness? Anyway, I bet they know where you can find that, too.

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Fujimaru 2: Scáthach!?

Napoleon: Yup.

Mash: Y-you mean...THAT Scáthach...?

Napoleon: That's what I said.

Fou: Fou, fou fou! Kyuuu!

Napoleon: Aah! Get offa me! What is this thing, a dog? I'm okay with dogs!

Fou: Fooou!

Napoleon: What!? What's your problem!? What'd I say!?

Mash: Fo-Fou! Stay! What's gotten into you...!?

Ophelia: ...What about the giants?

Queen of Ice and Snow: Indeed. They may appear to be quite active,but they are not exactly industrious.

Queen of Ice and Snow: I hold absolute authority over them. I can make them attack or sleep with a single command.

Queen of Ice and Snow: But even I cannot suppress their instincts. The giants who survived consume heat in any form they can.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Though most of them remain in hibernation, they will awaken at the slightest hint of a new heat source and devour it immediately.

Ophelia: Then the giants can't serve as a proper,disciplined army. As I suspected.

Ophelia: Of course, I have nothing but the utmost respect for your ability to control many of them at once, but...

Sigurd: Hmph. As familiars go, they're third-rate at best.

Ophelia: Saber.

Queen of Ice and Snow: It's quite all right. That knight of yours is correct, Ophelia.

Queen of Ice and Snow: The giants may have lived through the fires of Ragnarök as the humans and I did, but they are a pitiful shadow of their former selves.

Queen of Ice and Snow: ...Still, they were once proud, mighty souls.

Queen of Ice and Snow: That is why I love them. For they, too,are living things here in Scandinavia.

Ophelia: ...

Queen of Ice and Snow: We gods may not always have seen eye to eye with giants,but they were still beings on par with us.

Queen of Ice and Snow: The heat of the flames scorched them all. It twisted the frost giants, the mountain giants...No giant escaped its wrath.

Queen of Ice and Snow: Now, they have become so twisted that they are little more than walking calamities. They bring nothing but death and destruction, just like fire.

Queen of Ice and Snow: So I shall keep them in check myself.

Queen of Ice and Snow: With the masks born of mine own hands,I can unite all the giants under my rule!

Queen of Ice and Snow: For I carry the noble blood of Ymir in my icy veins!

Napoleon: ...Aha. So you two knew Scáthach from Proper Human History, huh?

Napoleon: Unfortunately, this version of her is absolutely not the person you know.

Napoleon: She's not a Divine Spirit–not a god that has lost its body and dissolved back into nature. She's an actual, living goddess!

Napoleon: Scáthach-Skadi, goddess and queen, has been around for thousands of years, ever since the Age of Gods. A fusion of the Norse goddess Skadi and the Celtic warrior Scáthach.

Fujimaru 1: Scáthach-Skadi...!?

Mash: I see...

Mash: I did hear that certain aspects of Scáthach from Proper Human History may have blended in with the Norse deity Skadi...

Mash: I suppose that means, in this Lostbelt...Skadi, the goddess of snowy mountains who is herself part giant, would be the predominant figure over Scáthach.

Napoleon: Yup. That's pretty much it.

Napoleon: Here in this Lostbelt, where the Age of Gods never ended, she rules over humans and giants alike. Her goal seems to be for everything to remain as it is.

Napoleon: I guess that part's the same as other Lostbelts? If nothing else, I'm pretty sure she doesn't want to wipe humanity out.

Napoleon: In fact, word has it that Scáthach-Skadi loves all forms of life. That's what I've been hearing, anyway.

Fou: Fou?

Mash: Loves...?

Napoleon: Means we can reason with her. Long as we don't go openly declaring war on her or anything...

Napoleon: ...she won't see us as enemies. Guaranteed.

Mash: B-but, Napoleon, we've already destroyed a number of her envoys...

Napoleon: Trust me, it's gonna take more than that to ruffle this queen's feathers. I know that sounds pretty weird, but it's true.

Napoleon: She doesn't call herself the mother of Scandinavia for nothing.

Mash: Wait, mother?

Napoleon: That's right.

Napoleon: ...That said, I can understand why you'd be nervous. Especially after that big dustup we had with the envoys.

Napoleon: ...But that's as much my fault as it is yours! Sorry for getting you two caught up in that!

Fujimaru 1: Don't worry about it.

Fujimaru 2: We're just grateful you saved us.

Napoleon: Hey, thanks! That makes me feel a lot better!

Mash: I have to say, Napoleon...I'm impressed how much you know about both this Lostbelt and Proper Human History.

Napoleon: Hm?

Mash: Napoleon Bonaparte. You first made a name for yourself after the French Revolution in 1789, eventually going on to become the first Emperor of France.

Mash: As the Supreme Commander of the Grande Armée, you were one of France's greatest rulers and conquerors.

Mash: For a time, you controlled over half of Europe, and your grand expedition to Russia is particularly well known...

Mash: ...but at least in our database, I haven't seen anything regarding your exploits that pertains to Scandinavia.

Mash: I did hear that you were quite the fan of James Macpherson's Ossian, which had epic poems similar to the Norse Poetic Edda, but that's all.

Mash: What I'm trying to say must have acquired your knowledge of Scandinavia after you materialized.

Mash: Is that right, Napoleon?

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, how do you know so much...?

Fujimaru 2: An Emperor Napoleon who knows all about Scandinavia...

Napoleon: Haha, well sure. I materialized here just a little bit before you all showed up.

Napoleon: That's why I happen to know so much. I've been getting all this information while I travel around on foot and on some skis I made.

Napoleon: As to the source of my information,well...I think I'll hold off on that for now.

Napoleon: An air of mystery makes hotties like me even hotter, don't you think?

Fou: Fo, fou fou! Kyaaau!

Napoleon: Oof!

Napoleon: Wh-what is it? You want me to fess up everything, no secrets? Come on, lay off me, doggo! I've got my reasons!

Mash: (Um, Fou isn't actually a dog...)

Napoleon: ...Phew.

Napoleon: Well, let me be perfectly clear about one thing: this here Heroic Spirit's on humanity's side.

Napoleon: I'm your ally. I came here to save you.

Napoleon: Just make sure you don't forget that. Long as you don't,we could even make a temporary contract if you want.

Mash: ...Senpai.

Fujimaru 1: I trust Napoleon.

Fujimaru 2: He did save us when we were in a really bad spot.

Mash: Yes...I agree. He is capable and trustworthy.

Mash: That's right. I couldn't believe my eyes when I first saw an Archer like you wielding that enormous cannon...!

Napoleon: Hm? Is that so? I didn't think artillery specialists were all that uncommon.

Napoleon: Then again, maybe it's tougher than I thought for someone like that to make their mark on humanity?

Napoleon: It's not like I was an artillery officer my whole life. Hell, my Spirit Origin and Noble Phantasm are both pretty much afterthoughts...

Mash: Hm? mean you didn't use a cannon like that when you were alive?

Napoleon: Hahahahaha, of course not! You're a riot, mademoiselle! Can you imagine an emperor like me going around with a cannon like this!?

Napoleon: Wait, guess I shouldn't laugh, huh? Sorry about that. It's just not that uncommon in modern Heroic Spirits.

Napoleon: I don't know what sort of adventures you've gotten up to before, but haven't you seen anything like this with other modern Heroic Spirits from Proper Human History?

Napoleon: You know, where they turned out to be kind of a caricature of their real selves?

Mash: Oh...Now that you mention it...Babbage's Heroic Spirit materialized as a mechanical suit of armor...

Mash: ...and Edison...doesn't look remotely close to how he did when he was alive, maybe because of the special circumstances surrounding his materialization...

Fujimaru 1: There are some who seem a bit different from their real selves.

Fujimaru 2: Some of them end up turning into Innocent Monsters, too.

Napoleon: Right? And in my case, I got this gigantic cannon.

Napoleon: And that's not all that's different: just look how tall I am here! Ooh la la! Won't be getting called short anytime soon! Not a chance!

Napoleon: Well, as far as looks go, I've got my own reasons for appearing like I do...

Napoleon: Enough of that, though! Anything else you wanna ask me?

Mash: Yes!

Fou: Fo fou!

Mash: Remember how Gerda said that, at least in Village 23,an envoy won't come again for another year?

Mash: Is there a reason for that? Something you know from your unidentified information source...?

Napoleon: I can't be totally certain it'll be another year,but that sounds right to me. Oh, but that's not my source talking. I learned that firsthand.

Mash: How...?

Napoleon: Just look at how many of 'em showed up this time.

Napoleon: The envoys aren't allowed to sacrifice humans on any day besides the one that goddess lady–Scáthach-Skadi ordained.

Napoleon: So they must've brought a whole bunch of them along to make sure the ritual didn't go off the rails again.

Fujimaru 1: Hold up.

Fujimaru 2: “Again”?

Napoleon: Oh, right. This wasn't my first run-in with them.

Napoleon: Back at another village, I caught one of 'em trying to open those giant gates and sniped 'em.

Napoleon: There was just the one back then, probably 'cause they didn't expect anyone to attack them, but that obviously wasn't the case with that last village...

Napoleon: Remember them saying something about shared records?

Napoleon: Well, the data from the one I sniped got shared with the rest. It looks like they responded by shoring up their numbers in preparation for another attack.

Napoleon: The envoys don't care about the queen's philanthropy. They're basically machines. No reasoning with them.

Mash: ...I see...

Fou: ...Fo fou...

Napoleon: ...So, uh, I guess what I'm trying to say is...

Napoleon: I'm sorry!

Napoleon: I had no idea they'd come back with those kinds of numbers. Guess I really messed things up for you two.

Mash: Oh no, not at all...!

Mash: We never would have won without your help! Especially given how strong each envoy was individually...

Napoleon: Oh, yeah, that...

Napoleon: Guess I oughta level with you. I'm pretty sure the sisters they based the envoys off of are even stronger.

Napoleon: The ones we ran into yesterday are basically mass-produced dolls that Queen Scáthach-Skadi made by infusing them with her own magical energy.

Mash: Mass-produced dolls...

Mash: ......

Napoleon: Might as well get this out there, too. The Queen here is merciful, yes, but the whole place is lousy with powerful, vicious enemies.

Napoleon: A shitstorm of envoys...That Lostbelt Servant with his demonic sword...And almost no allies for us.

Napoleon: Even with the odds that stacked against us,are you two still ready to fight?

Fujimaru 1: ...Of course.

Fujimaru 2: That's why we came here.

Mash: Exactly.... Yes. We're ready to fight.

Mash: We're the only ones who have a chance, no matter how small,of restoring Earth and Proper Human History.

Mash: So, that's why...

Napoleon: Gotcha. That's good to hear.

Napoleon: Me, I'm the guy who once ruled over most of Europe. I'd say that more or less makes me its king.

Fou: Fo fo, fo...fooou? (Special Translation: What's Boney here going on about? )

Napoleon: So if you call for me, I'll come running right away. Doesn't matter where, even waaay up north! Doesn't matter how cold it is! I'll be there!

Napoleon: After all, if someone begs for my help,how can I refuse?

Napoleon: Back when I was alive, there was a mountain of problems keeping my hands tied, like budgetary concerns and stockpiling issues...

Napoleon: ...but now that I'm a Heroic Spirit fighting for humanity, nothing's gonna hold me back! Haha!

Napoleon: There might only be so many categories of things I can help with, but if there's two things I do best, it's fight hard, and win! If that's what you're looking for, then your search is over!

Napoleon: 'Sides, Scandinavia's still part of Europe,and nobody's better at winning in Europe than I am!

Mash: S-Senpai! His confidence and spirit are amazing...!

Mash: Although, there IS one thing I'm a little concerned about. As I recall, Emperor Napoleon's biggest defeat was...

Fujimaru 1: Oh yeah, what was it again?

Mash: His expedition to Russia. The winter there was too harsh for his Grande Armée to endure, which ultimately led their defeat.

Mash: Apparently, that defeat was a major factor in the decline of his reign...

Fujimaru 2: When the Grande Armée couldn't handle the Russian winter.

Mash: Yes, exactly! That defeat would go on to be a major factor in the decline of his reign...

Napoleon: Honestly, it would've been nice to get another crack at Russia for my revenge, but, oh well. C'est la vie.

Napoleon: Still, since we're in a harsh wintry environment too, I will settle for avenging my Grande Armée's defeat here!

Fujimaru 1: Does that really count?

Fujimaru 2: I really don't think that's how karma all...Ever.

Napoleon: ...Now don't be like that, Private.

Mash: Private? Do you mean Senpai?

Napoleon: Yup! You're the first recruit of my new Grande Armée. Good luck! Work hard enough, and maybe you'll even earn a medal!

Fou: Fo fo fou!

Mash: U-um, I'm sorry, but didn't you already give Senpai a medal...?

Napoleon: Oh, right. I did, didn't I!

Napoleon: ...Aw crap.

Napoleon: Guess we lost track of time. Looks like we ran into a group of 'em out on patrol, mademoiselle.

Mash: ...You're right. Magical energy signals are headed towards us. Fortunately, they're still far enough away that I can use my thrusters to make a clean getaway.

Napoleon: No, I say we let them find us. I want to get a better look at how you two fight.

Napoleon: I'm not saying we do this for kicks. We need to hone our skills against opponents we know we can defeat before we come up against someone really tough.

Napoleon: We need to get better at fighting together as a unit. Call it teamwork if you like.

Napoleon: So what do you say? Make sense to you, Private?

Fujimaru 1: ...I do want us to get better.

Napoleon: Now we're talking.

Fujimaru 2: I don't want to kill if we don't have to, but I do see your point.

Napoleon: Haha, good answer!

Napoleon: All right, here they are! Let's get this battle underway, Private!


Scáthach-Skadi: ...This Hinako person's Lostbelt is absolutely out of the question.

Scáthach-Skadi: Two of the other four that remain are completely unfit as well.

Scáthach-Skadi: In which case, I suppose we will need to cooperate with the great ones of Greece, as you originally proposed?

Ophelia: Yes, Your Majesty. I believe that would be wisest.

Ophelia: Peperoncino is an excellent Crypter in his own right,and his Lostbelt is of high quality...

Ophelia: ...but in my estimation, it still does not compare to yours, Queen Scáthach-Skadi.

Scáthach-Skadi: I do find that Crypter charming, but given what you have told me, I cannot say I care for his Lostbelt.

Scáthach-Skadi: Still, I much prefer it to the one lying right in the middle of a continent.

Scáthach-Skadi: That aside, what a bizarre name he has. Pepe...Peperoncino? ...It does have a strange charm to it.

Scáthach-Skadi: No matter. Let us discuss something else.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...The incident that took place in Village 23.

Scáthach-Skadi: It seems members of Chaldea did indeed join forces with...that man.

Scáthach-Skadi: I'm told they destroyed quite a number of my daughters–the envoys modeled after the Valkyries.

Ophelia: ...My knight and I will see they are dealt with at once.

Sigurd: Just say the word, and I'll kill 'em. Even a demonic sword gets rusty if you don't use it now and then.

Scáthach-Skadi: What have I told you? You will kill no one.

Scáthach-Skadi: Despite your pledge to serve me, Ophelia,I see your heart still lies with another.

Scáthach-Skadi: However, this is still my world,and so you will kill no one.

Scáthach-Skadi: They may end up meeting their end at the hands of giants,or at the hands of other imitation Valkyries...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...but that is simply the way of the world;it is as natural as footprints on morning snow.

Scáthach-Skadi: There is no need to involve your demonic sword.

Scáthach-Skadi: Besides...did I not tell you I would love them?

Ophelia: ...I did not think you were serious.

Scáthach-Skadi: Haha, you say that as if it doesn't concern you. Ophelia, your deadpan expression is impressive, but also dull.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Then again, he doesn't want my love, does he?

Scáthach-Skadi: Be that as it may, when it comes to dealing with others besides myself, my question remains the same.

Scáthach-Skadi: That is...

Scáthach-Skadi: I kill them, or love them?

Scáthach-Skadi: If I decide to kill them, I do so immediately. I halt them, freeze them, and destroy them. If I decide to love them, I do so until their dying breath. I nurture them and stay with them as they die.

Scáthach-Skadi: All humans are my children. As are all giants.

Scáthach-Skadi: Do I kill them, or love them? My enemies, I kill; my children, I love. That is who I am: the queen, the mother, of Scandinavia.

Scáthach-Skadi: Yet again, that goes for you too, Ophelia. And you, knight.

Scáthach-Skadi: You are my beloved daughter,and you, my precious son.

Scáthach-Skadi: Every life that grows here in Scandinavia is my child.

Ophelia: I...

Ophelia: No. Your kindness knows no bounds, Your Majesty.

Scáthach-Skadi: Indeed, that goes for the three Valkyries Odin entrusted to me as well. Thrúd? Thrúd, come here!

Thrúd: ...Valkyrie Thrúd, reporting for duty.

Thrúd: Wonderful to see you in good health, Scáthach-Skadi, Our Goddess and Protector. And you, Lady Ophelia, Her sworn ally.

Scáthach-Skadi: Have I not told you to call me “Mother”? Really now.

Thrúd: As you wish.

Ophelia: ......

Sigurd: Hmph. She sure does rattle on a lot for a doll.

Thrúd: What is your command? We shall obey any order you give us.

Thrúd: For you are our master, Scáthach-Skadi.

Scáthach-Skadi: After all these years, you still refuse to behave as my daughter. No matter how often I see it, it still manages to impress me.

Scáthach-Skadi: Tell me, my beloved daughter. As leader of my hundred-odd envoys, what do you make of the incident in Village 23?

Scáthach-Skadi: I know you are obedient,but despite what that knight says...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...I also know you are no mindless wooden doll.

Thrúd: We are meant to execute our master's commands. We cannot make decisions on our own.

Scáthach-Skadi: That's quite all right. Just tell me what you think. Keep it to pure analysis if you must.

Thrúd: ...Very well.

Thrúd: Of course, if you say these transgressors will be permitted to remain alive, we shall act accordingly. I do think they can be left alone...

Thrúd: As for the destroyed envoys, they were mass-produced units with no ability to adapt to changing circumstances.

Thrúd: Still, based on what I've seen in our shared records,I don't think the three of us will need to respond.

Thrúd: Even if circumstances change, and we do end up needing to deal with them, I think the giants...

Thrúd: ...or a mass-produced unit's self-destruct function should be sufficient.

Scáthach-Skadi: Oh?

Thrúd: I am told the transgressors are a human and one who is half-human, half-Heroic Spirit. There is no need for the three of us to confront such a lowly foe.

Ophelia: ...

Sigurd: Heh. Cheeky little doll, isn't she.

Sigurd: Come on, Ophelia, just say the word. I want to break it right here and now.

Ophelia: ...Don't be ridiculous. Her Majesty is right there. You will not act without my permission.

Scáthach-Skadi: That is fine. I like the way your knight speaks his mind. But stay your sword. You are not to harm my daughter.

Scáthach-Skadi: She is adorable in her own way. I accept her as she is, and love her.

Sigurd: ...Hmph.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Hehe. Very well then, Sir Knight: Would you like to try drawing that demonic sword of yours right now?

Ophelia: Your Majesty!

Thrúd: Give me the command, Your Majesty, and that Heroic Spirit will be destroyed, demonic sword and all.

Thrúd: It may be difficult for Thrúd alone, but our chances of success would improve greatly with all three of us.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Hehe. Hehehe, hahahaha.

Scáthach-Skadi: That's all right. At ease, my ferocious daughter. Know that even I tend to jest at times.

Ophelia: ...That wasn't funny, Scáthach-Skadi.

Scáthach-Skadi: Haha, do forgive me. Seeing your adorably innocent faces, I simply couldn't help myself.

Scáthach-Skadi: Now then, I think I shall return to my throne for a time.

Scáthach-Skadi: I doubt they will make it here by tonight...but by tomorrow evening, I expect we will have guests.

Scáthach-Skadi: No doubt they will encounter more of the giants that roam my world, and destroy more imitation Valkyries before then.

Scáthach-Skadi: I do wonder, though, if they will survive long enough for us to meet...


Napoleon: ...All right! There goes the last one!

Napoleon: Nice job, you two! Gotta say, didn't think we'd be running into more mass-produced Valkyries out here.

Napoleon: Then again, both those things and the giants are loyal to the queen, so it makes sense they might fight side by side.

Napoleon: It was like something straight out of myth,seeing Valkyries with giants in tow.

Mash: ...It was rather magnificent,seeing them both together like that.

Mash: At any rate, Master, I can confirm there are no more magical energy signals nearby. Well done.

Fujimaru 1: You too, Mash. Great job out there.

Mash: Thank you!

Fujimaru 2: Thank you too, Napoleon. You were a big help.

Napoleon: Huh? Oh, sure. No problem.

Napoleon: Gotta say though, you two handled yourselves pretty nicely. I could tell you've done this before.

Napoleon: You've got real guts, little shield lady. You too, Fujimaru.

Napoleon: How do you summon so many Heroic Spirits at once? I don't suppose you could get them to stick around...?

Fou: Fou, fooou.

Napoleon: Well that's a damn shame! Otherwise, I could've put together the greatest Grande Armée of all time!

Napoleon: But there's no sense crying over...uh, milk you can't even spill. Anyway, we'll just have to build up our strength the old-fashioned way.

Napoleon: In other words, the three of us have gotta get stronger. Let's see...

Napoleon: Here, let me give you some tips for hunting giants. First off, try to go for their sensory organs or legs.

Napoleon: That's your best bet unless you've got a real powerhouse of a weapon. If so, you can just go for the vitals and take 'em out in one shot!

Mash: Um, you keep saying “sensory organs” you mean their heads?

Napoleon: That's right. The head's full of sensory organs. Those masks they wear cover up their eyes and noses, and it doesn't look like their hearing is exceptional...

Napoleon: they might be relying on some kind of sixth sense, or an ability that lets them detect heat sources, but I figure the eyes are a safe bet.

Napoleon: So make sure you go for their heads, even if you have to hit 'em through their masks. They're a big target, so it shouldn't be too tough to damage them.

Napoleon: When going for the legs,the knees and ankles are the best targets.

Napoleon: The giants' size and mass can be intimidating, but once you've knocked 'em to the ground, they're pretty much sitting ducks.

Napoleon: In other words, there's nothing too special about it. Just follow best practice.

Fou: Fou fo, fou!

Fujimaru 1: You really know your way around a giant fight, huh.

Fujimaru 2: Were you always this good at hunting giants, Napoleon...?

Mash: Yes, I'm surprised too. I had no idea you were also a great giant killer!

Mash: I don't know of any tales about you killing giants myself, though...Is it possible for stories to be both secret and passed down to others?

Napoleon: Don't worry, you're not missing any stories. Things just sorta worked out this way.

Fou: Fou fou?

Mash: Worked out?

Napoleon: Pretty much.

Napoleon: ...Gonna be nightfall soon. Perfect. What do you say we make camp for the night right around there?

Napoleon: Besides, I think it's about time we talked tactics.

Mash: Oh wow...

Mash: There really are camping facilities here. Did you set all this up ahead of time, Napoleon...?

Napoleon: You bet. I've got base camps like this set up all around this Lostbelt. Set them up with gear I pilfer–

Napoleon: Ahem, BORROWED, from the village where I drove off that one envoy. Still, the best part of being a Rogue Servant is...

Napoleon: never have to worry about supplies. All you need's a place to rest your body and mind for a while.

Napoleon: 'Course, I doubt it'll be that easy for you two...

Mash: Oh no, we'll be fine. But thank you for your concern.

Mash: We always carry food, water, and sleeping bags with us. My shield has storage space, you see.

Mash: There we go.

Fou: Fooou! Fou fou!

Mash: Don't worry Fou, we have some for you, too. Here, I'll put some water in your dish right now.

Fou: Fou! Fou!

Napoleon: Huh, that's pretty handy! But you can never have too many blankets. Here.

Fujimaru 1: Thanks!

Fujimaru 2: Mmm, nice and warm...

Mash: We still have the rations we brought from the Border...but for tonight, why won't we have Gerda's bread?

Mash: It's too bad we had to say our goodbyes so hastily...I wonder how Gerda's doing right now.

Fujimaru 1: ...Me too.

Mash: ......

Fujimaru 2: I hope we get to see her again at some point.

Mash: ...Yes. I hope so too.

Fou: Fou fou, fou!

Mash: Ah! Fou! It's rude to start eating your food before everyone's been served...!

Fou: Fou!

Napoleon: Hey, that looks good. Let me try a bite. Hmm...Hey, it is good. In fact, it deserves a medal!

Napoleon: You said her name was Gerda? Looks like she's earned a medal of her own!

Napoleon: Phew. That hit the spot.

Napoleon: All right, let's talk tactics.... Sorry for springing all this on you.

Mash: Not at all. It's good to discuss this as early as possible. Thank you for doing this.

Napoleon: I'm the one who should be thanking you.

Napoleon: So, tomorrow, we're gonna make our move on the enemy. We'll be sneaking into the castle near old Oslo. Right?

Napoleon: And when we do, we'll almost certainly have a fight waiting for us.

Fujimaru 1: Do you think we can win...?

Fujimaru 2: Sigurd alone was a really tough enemy.

Napoleon: Good question. So to begin, we need to define our conditions for victory!

Fou: Fo? Fo fou?

Napoleon: Well, the question we need to ask is: What must we do to win? And, conversely, what would mean that we have completely, absolutely lost?

Napoleon: Can we only win by wiping out the enemy? No. We can't possibly kill every giant and envoy in Scandinavia, and we wouldn't want to.

Napoleon: So that's not a suitable condition for victory.

Napoleon: No, what you two need to do more than anything is...

Fujimaru 1: Get the Paper Moon back!

Fujimaru 2: Well, locating the Tree of Emptiness is up there...

Mash: Retrieving the Paper Moon is our highest,most urgent priority.

Mash: And we also absolutely require information on the Tree of Emptiness, since we can't see it.

Mash: It may end up being after we've made contact with the Wandering Sea, but we will eventually need to destroy it and...

Mash: ...make this Lostbelt disappear...

Napoleon: Then that's your victory condition. That's what you need to do.

Napoleon: Get this Paper Moon thing back, and find out what you can about the Tree of Emptiness.

Napoleon: So what is your defeat condition? Easy: you both end up dead.

Napoleon: So your only choice is to keep yourselves safe and set about meeting your victory condition.

Napoleon: If it were just a matter of defeating your enemies, things would be simple. Unfortunately, your condition for victory is pretty far from straightforward.

Fou: Fooou...

Napoleon: Now, now, doggy, cheer up! I know it looks bad! The queen's influence extends to all of Scandinavia, after all!

Napoleon: But...she has no intention of throwing everything she's got at us.

Mash: She doesn't...?

Napoleon: If she wanted us dead, we would be. The envoys and giants all act as she desires, almost like puppets.

Napoleon: If she ordered the giants in this area to find and attack us, we'd be fighting them off every minute of the day...

Napoleon: ...but that's obviously not what she's done. They haven't even raised any kind of alarm about us, let alone created a defensive line or anything.

Fujimaru 1: So, they're not on the alert...

Fujimaru 2: You mean they're not even trying to defend against us?

Napoleon: That's right. As the Supreme Commander of the Grande Armée, it pains me to say this...

Napoleon: ...but she doesn't even think of us as an enemy. I think, at worst, she sees us as something more like a pack of wild animals.

Napoleon: But, that's okay. It's our in. She's leaving herself wide open by not putting up her guard.

Napoleon: Oh, and one more thing...

Napoleon: ...Listen close. Once we make our way into their base...

Napoleon: All right! It might be kind of a stretch to call it a strategy, but that's the plan!

Mash: Understood!

Napoleon: Good answer. Anyway, don't worry! I didn't bring you two all this way without anything to show for it.

Napoleon: I've got more than one trump card up my sleeve. As for what they are,'ll just have to wait and see.

Fou: Fooou! Kyaaau!

Napoleon: Hahaha! Sorry 'bout that! If it makes you feel better, I'm only half serious! Hahahahaha!

Section 6: Castle of Snow and Ice (End)

Mash: Senpai, look!

Mash: Those birds are back...

Mash: Does that mean we're near another one of those patches of land between ice and fire?

Mash: I don't think we saw any birds around Gerda's village. Given what she said, animals are pretty rare here.

Mash: Since they have fish in the village pond,they may be more used to aquatic life.

Napoleon: Huh, you don't say. So you two can see those birds too.

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Fujimaru 2: Is there a reason we wouldn't...?

Napoleon: It's a good thing. Those birds are a good sign for us.

Napoleon: They've guided me the whole time I've been here. Even led me to you two.

Mash: Huh? Th-those specific birds? Really?

Napoleon: Kidding, obviously. Now come on! It's morning,and we need to pick up the pace of this march!

Napoleon: Go ahead and activate those thruster things. We're almost to Her Majesty's castle!

...It was indeed a castle. A lonely, solitary castle. At a glance, you could tell it was meant as a home for someone important. A castle of snow and ice, clearly made for royalty. It had nothing in the way of defenses as a fortress might. The first and most important consideration in its design had plainly been beauty.

Mash: If we were still in Proper Human History, this castle would be considered an architectural masterpiece.

Napoleon: Well, here in this Lostbelt, it's the largest building around, not that that's exactly a high bar to clear.

Napoleon: A castle of ice and snow. A kind of temple, where a real-life god resides.

Napoleon: The one and only castle in this whole Lostbelt, standing tall in the northern part of the Oslo Fjord in the Scandinavian Peninsula–Oslo in Proper Human History.

Napoleon: I'll say this: it sure looks like a place where the ruler of this icy land would live.

Fou: Fou, fo fou.

Mash: How do we get in?

Napoleon: Through the back.

Napoleon: You've probably figured it out by now, but this isn't my first time here. I tried breaking in once before.

Napoleon: As you can imagine, it didn't go particularly well.

Napoleon: But it wasn't all for nothing, right? I may not have left with much in the way of spoils, but I got info.

Fujimaru 1: You mean you went in alone!?

Fujimaru 2: A man famous for leading an army went in alone?

Napoleon: Damn straight!

Napoleon: I know what Heroic Spirits are supposed to be like in my head, but it's hard to put into practice.

Napoleon: It's not like I was overly confident in my power or anything...I was mostly just curious to see how far I could go.

Napoleon: Plus, I had a few reasons for doing it. I might not've taken any of them down, but I did learn a few things.

Napoleon: One of them was this underground passage leading to the castle's main building.

Napoleon: If you just walk across the big bridge up top, you get swarmed by a mountain of envoys...Guess it's just in their nature...

Fou: Fo, fo fo fou...

Napoleon: Down below is much easier. Not nearly as heavy security down there.

Napoleon: Yeah, I figured this'd be the case. She didn't increase security after I broke in. So, must mean she doesn't see me as an enemy.

Napoleon: ...But she definitely knows we're here. That's just who she is.

Napoleon: She's the real deal; there's no telling how strong she might be. Be ready to face her when we get up to the castle, 'cause I promise you, she'll be waiting.

Mash: R-right.

Fujimaru 1: Got it.

Fujimaru 2: A Lostbelt Scáthach, huh...

Mash: ...Right. Here, she's the king of this Lostbelt. And of course, she has no way of knowing who we are.

Fou: Fo...fou! Fo fou!

Mash: Fou?

Mash: ...Senpai, Napoleon, there are magical energy signals up ahead. Is that–

Napoleon: Nah, those are just ice beasts that decided to make this place their home. Let's take 'em out and be on our way!

Napoleon: Artillerymen, forward!


Napoleon: Phew. I swear, what the hell do those things eat to get so damn big!?

Napoleon: Anyway...We weren't too loud, right...?

Napoleon: I was...careful with my...cannon...

Napoleon: ......

Mash: ......

Mash: Um...

Napoleon: No no, don't say it. I should've known from the moment I materialized with this giant cannon that I wasn't really going to be great at covert ops.

Napoleon: ...Doesn't look like the castle garrison's about to storm us, but it's probably too much to hope they didn't notice.

Napoleon: Well, may as well keep on going. There's a staircase leading up not far ahead. And once we get there–

Mash: The queen will be...waiting for us...?

Napoleon: Sure will. Maybe that Sigurd guy, too. We're not here for a rematch, but you might not have a choice!

Napoleon: All right, let's get a move on, Private!


Mash: It's beautiful...

Mash: I-I mean, we've made our way into the castle. This seems to be the throne room. Scanning for magical energy now...

Mash: I'm getting a powerful magical energy signal from...the entire place! It's as though the castle itself is emanating magical energy...

D:Woman's Voice: Yes, I suppose it would be.

D:Woman's Voice: I made this castle of ice and snow out of my own magical energy. You may as well be standing within me.

D:Woman's Voice: You can't even sense the Servant standing nearby, can you? That is because these walls are hardened snow, the very same snow that falls all across my Scandinavia.

Fou: Fo, fou fou! Kyaaau!

Mash: That voice...!

Napoleon: Well that didn't take long! Haha, ol' Queenie here sure likes to make an entrance, doesn't she!

D:Woman's Voice: A god...

D:Woman's Voice: eternal. A god is absolute.

D:Woman's Voice: In ancient times, humans saw gods in everything...but in my world, my Lostbelt, there is only one.

D:Woman's Voice: If a god is everywhere, in all things, then so am I. If a god is incredible power, then so am I.

D:Woman's Voice: I am told the gods are gone in Proper Human History. I am told they are reduced to Divine Spirits, and that humans never see them.

D:Woman's Voice: It must be painful, living in such a world.

D:Woman's Voice: To think that humans have no choice but to bury the objects of their worship deep in their hearts, that they must rely on idols instead of true deities.

D:Woman's Voice: But in this world, I exist...

Scáthach-Skadi: You may bow your heads and kneel before me, human children. I am Scáthach-Skadi, and I shall love you as my own.

Fujimaru 1: It's really her...

Fujimaru 2: Scáthach...

Mash: ...She really does look exactly like Scáthach...

Fou: Fo...Foooooou...

Scáthach-Skadi: Hm? Is that the only part of my name that draws your attention?

Scáthach-Skadi: Ah, yes. I remember now. The Crypter told me you are acquainted with a Heroic Spirit from Proper Human History.

Scáthach-Skadi: Scáthach, the Celtic warrior, was it? Regrettably, I know almost nothing about her...

Scáthach-Skadi: But, I do know all about you. I'm told you fought bravely within that lump of metal you call the Shadow Border.

Scáthach-Skadi: You also rescued one of my precious human children. It seems you caused an unfortunate incident in Village 23 arising from a misunderstanding, but I forgive you.

Scáthach-Skadi: I forgive all of it. I shall love you as my own children.

Scáthach-Skadi: You did well to survive the demonic sword's assault. That is how it should be. I do not wish for any living thing to suffer such pain more than once.

Mash: ...

Fujimaru 1: (I can't believe it...)

Fujimaru 2: (Maybe we really can reason with her? )

Mash: (I think so, Senpai. I can even sense genuine,um, affection in her words. )

Mash: (But, at the same time...)

Mash: (...her magical energy is such that I can't even begin to process it! It's filling the entire castle! )

Mash: (...What's more, it's so concentrated that I almost feel like I'm going to pass out! It's enough to kill any normal creature instantly! )

Mash: (It even reminds me of the Seventh Singularity...and the massive magical energy in the atmosphere there...)

Fou: Fo, fooo...u...!

Napoleon: That's real generous of you, Your Majesty. Does that mean you're putting us under your protection?

Scáthach-Skadi: Ah, it's you. That Archer whose name escapes me.

Scáthach-Skadi: You are alive because I wish it to be so. How about that? Is that enough to know that I love you?

Napoleon: Damn, my name's that hard for you to remember, huh?

Napoleon: I'm Napoleon Bonaparte. I used to be an emperor. Now I'm a hero of humanity.

Napoleon: That's the second time I've told you that.

Scáthach-Skadi: Haha, forgive me, Archer. I have no interest in the names or deeds of those from Proper Human History.

Scáthach-Skadi: Naturally, I permit you all to exist here in Scandinavia. I am god here, and there are only two possibilities I have for you.

Scáthach-Skadi: A simple question...Do I kill you, or love you?

Scáthach-Skadi: I have decided to grace the three of you with my love. I will, therefore, not kill you. That said...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...I will not be telling you where the Tree of Emptiness lies. I suggest you do not pursue it further.

Mash: !!!

Scáthach-Skadi: You mean to cut it down, do you not? That would be a sin even I could not forgive.

Scáthach-Skadi: As for the Paper Moon, you are free to do with it as you will. Of course, I imagine its current owners may have something to say about that.

Napoleon: Haha. So what, you want us to put on a little show for you and fight them for it?

Scáthach-Skadi: That is not the worst idea...but no,I had something else in mind...Thrúd.

Thrúd: You called for me, my Goddess?

Scáthach-Skadi: Capture them.

Mash: ...!

Napoleon: Oh...?

Scáthach-Skadi: They have not yet broken the seam, but as I expected, they have begun to form a group. As such, they shall enjoy my love here, where I can watch them closely.

Thrúd: Understood. Command received, Scáthach-Skadi. What should I do if the targets resist?

Scáthach-Skadi: Do not kill them. They, too, are my precious children.

Thrúd: As you wish.

Thrúd: Then I will attempt to neutralize them without killing them. Once I activate my White Swan Mystic Code, I will engage my light spear's combat function.

Mash: ...!

Mash: It's difficult to accurately gauge her magical energy inside this castle...but she is much more powerful than the envo–She's a Valkyrie!

Napoleon: Haha! Obviously! She's one of the originals they used as a base model!

Napoleon: She and her two sisters lead that entire army! You should be thanking your lucky stars we get to see her for ourselves!

Napoleon: That's Thrúd! She's a daughter of Odin himself. She's a demigod who's been around since the Age of Gods!

Mash: Demigod...!?

Fou: Fo!?

Napoleon: Don't be afraid! Don't retreat now! Her Majesty herself is watching, so let's show her what we can do!

Thrúd: Scáthach-Skadi, permission to release a Muspel to limit unforeseen possibilities in combat.

Thrúd: Fighting alongside one would greatly reduce the difficulty of restraining the targets without killing them.

Scáthach-Skadi: Granted. Use him well, Thrúd.

Mash: A hole just opened in the floor! And...something's climbing out? ...Is that...a giant!?

Mash: It has the same kind of mask as the other giants we've seen! It's also chained down by–

Mash: Scratch that! The chains just went flying and the giant is coming right at us!

Napoleon: We didn't even see any giants underground on the way here! Guess this place is still full of surprises!

Thrúd: Quasi-link to Muspel established. Commencing target neutralization. Engaging combat mode.

Thrúd: ...It is time you learned the power of the Goddess's servants, people of Proper Human History.

Scáthach-Skadi: Dance, my human children. Dance. Show me how fiercely your passion burns!


Mash: The giant presumed to be a Muspel has been defeated...I believe it's most likely the strongest type of giant we've seen so far!

Napoleon: Muspels are flame giants! In Norse mythology, they were said to live in the fire realm of Muspelheim!

Napoleon: Basically means they're mythology's ultimate badasses. You better believe they're tough if not even the gods want them running around unsupervised!

Napoleon: But! This was still no match for the Grande Armée!

Napoleon: ...Hrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaah!

Thrúd: ...Defending against the Archer's ranged attack. It is powerful, but insufficient to destroy my shield.

Napoleon: So this is what it's like going up against a real Valkyrie. Fun stuff! Puissance aside, your gear's something else!

Napoleon: Was that stuff made in the Age of Gods? Don't tell me Odin himself forged it!

Thrúd: ...You are strong, brave warriors from a far-off land. You have forced me to reconsider several of my underlying presumptions.

Thrúd: And you, Archer, would seem to possess an exceptionally keen eye.

Thrúd: My Divine Iron Shield was indeed forged before Ragnarök, and bestowed upon me by Odin.

Thrúd: It will not break no matter what manner of strange firearm you wield against it.

Napoleon: Hahaha, of all the times to be right! Oh, as for my weapon here, this is called a cannon! Don't forget it!

Thrúd: Understood. Designation: cannon. I'll remember that. It's simpler than I expected.

Napoleon: Hey, you actually listened to me...I like that. Haha! And you're just as beautiful as the queen, though in a distinctly different way.

Napoleon: But, sadly, here in Scandinavia,I'm already promised to another!

Mash: ...Khh!

Napoleon: Thanks for the defense! Great teamwork! You've got a knack for this!

Mash: Thank you! But, I'm afraid that fighting a true Valkyrie is much more difficult than the envoys...

Mash: Adjusting Ortinax's output. Auto-maintenance functionality activated.

Mash: ...This Lostbelt is full of beautiful, powerful life-forms. I still can't determine how strong the queen is, but...

Mash: ...even putting her aside, I never thought there would be so many other enemies on par with Sigurd here...

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe. My, my.

Scáthach-Skadi: You shouldn't speak that name lightly,young shield-maiden. Words have weight, after all.

Scáthach-Skadi: Now, the one who filled you with such dread approaches...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Hehe, if only you had not spoken his name,he might have remained out of sight.

Napoleon: !

Mash: (Unbelievable. This place should make it impossible to detect a Servant's distinct presence, yet I can still feel his intense burning cold as clear as day...! )

Mash: Sigurd the Dragon Slayer...!

Fou: Fou, fooou!!!

Fujimaru 1: Over here, Fou!

Fou: Fo!

Fujimaru 2: It's not safe to be near Mash right now!

Fou: Fooou...

Napoleon: Haha, now I see! Boy, do I ever see!

Napoleon: Ooh la la! This is a tough one! He's just as the shield mademoiselle described! I'm getting goose bumps!

Napoleon: But I'm afraid that's where it stops. That isn't enough to make me swap my cannon for a white flag...

Napoleon: I've still got ammo, and plenty of gunpowder. If anything, now I'm just more curious than ever.

Napoleon: Just how many shots DOES it take to break to the center of a great hero's Spirit Origin...?

Thrúd: ...Why are you here, child of Barnstokkr? Do you mean to interfere with my task?

Sigurd: Hmph.

Sigurd: Don't worry. I hear I'm supposed to be a knight now, so I'm just here in case Her Majesty needs me, like my princess told me to be.

Sigurd: Those the Chaldeans? Well here they are, just like Her Majesty said.

Sigurd: What do you want to do about them, Ophelia? If you want them dead, I can kill them right now.

Ophelia: ...Be quiet, Saber.

Mash: Ophelia...

Ophelia: ...

Ophelia: ...Your Majesty, would you be so kind as to have Thrúd stand down? I wish to speak with that young woman.

Scáthach-Skadi: Granted. Did you hear that, Thrúd? Stand down.

Thrúd: As you wish.

Ophelia: Mash Kyrielight.

Ophelia: It's been a while since we last spoke, yes? Two years, if I'm not mistaken?

Mash: ...That's right. It's been a long time, Ophelia.

Mash: I've been wanting to talk to you again too. I've wanted to tell you everything about what happened in Chaldea, about our journey to restore humanity.

Mash: I wanted to tell you about who I was then and who I am now...and to ask you about the name “Crypter. ”

Mash: Looking back, I never really talked with anyone else.

Mash: I only ever offered my opinion on what was happening in a given moment. I couldn't really express how I felt about things back then.

Mash: But that's not true anymore. I've been to so many places now, and learned so much from so many people.

Mash: I've learned so much about life. About good and evil, and how people retain their humanity even in difficult times.

Mash: But at Chaldea, even though we were all on the same team, I never tried to get to know the other members of Team A.

Mash: And that's why...I want to get to know you all now.

Mash: That first year as members of Team A...I want to find out what meaning there was to the time I spent with all of you.

Ophelia: ...I see. I'm glad to hear that.

Ophelia: You really are earnest, aren't you?

Ophelia: But, I'm afraid we won't be able to do that, Mash. This is where your journey ends.

Mash: Ophelia!

Ophelia: You've seen so many things I don't know about,and been to so many worlds I'll never visit.

Ophelia: I would love to hear about all of it. I really wish we could sit down and have a long talk.

Ophelia: I've felt that way ever since we first met. I mean that.

Ophelia: And with how you've grown since then...I think we might be able to have an even better discussion now.

Ophelia: But, that doesn't matter.

Ophelia: I'm not going to change. I can't. I'm a Crypter now, with all the responsibility that entails.

Ophelia: I can't let you all go. I won't.

Mash: ......

Mash: ...Even if it means resetting the entire planet?

Ophelia: What if it did?

Ophelia: That's who the Crypters are. That's who I am,under Lord Kirschtaria Wodime's guidance.

Ophelia: It's strange, isn't it, Mash? ...You were originally supposed to come with us.

Ophelia: Now you've become a Demi-Servant, and our enemy.

Ophelia: I'm not sure if this is irony, or fate.

Mash: I don't think of myself as your enemy. I would like to resolve our differences peacefully, if we can.

Mash: Is that...not the case for you, Ophelia?

Ophelia: Me?

Ophelia: Well, I suppose I–

Napoleon: Whoa there, slow down. Let's not try to skip to the end here. Go easy on the poor girl, Mademoiselle Mash.

Mash: Napoleon? Do you and Ophelia already know each other...?

Napoleon: Well, this is the second time we've met. We first met when I broke into the castle.

Napoleon: In fact, let me be frank.

Napoleon: Mademoiselle Ophelia Phamrsolone isn't just beautiful. She's also...

Napoleon: fiancée!

Mash: Fiancée!?

Fujimaru 1: I'll just pick my jaw up off the floor...

Fujimaru 2: Wait, what? How the hell did that happen!?

Mash: I-I'm trying and failing to imagine Ophelia...and Napoleon Bonaparte, the Heroic Spirit...married...

Mash: B-besides, aren't you already married, Napoleon? ...Oh, wait. If I recall correctly, you divorced your wife, but then went on to marry an archduchess...

Mash: B-but then, I do suppose there are Heroic Spirits who make a clean break from their past when they materialize, s-so...

Mash: N-never mind that! I still can't believe Ophelia is your fian–!

Ophelia: I'm not.

Mash: Huh...? You're not...?

Ophelia: Of course not.

Ophelia: I'm one of the seven chosen Crypters. Such trivialities are rather unimportant now.

Ophelia: Besides, Mash, you said it yourself. The world we grew up in has been completely wiped clean, right?

Ophelia: Engagement? Ridiculous. institution of the society humans cultivated is gone.

Ophelia: All that remains now is the new worlds in each Lostbelt, with new societies and new norms to guide humanity.

Ophelia: Take a look at this Scandinavia! The very idea of marriage doesn't even exis–

Napoleon: I proposed to you!

Napoleon: You never said no!

Mash: Then you ARE engaged!

Napoleon: Damn straight! But would you mind letting me finish, Mash?

Napoleon: Listen, Ophelia. Not saying no outright to a proposal is like saying yes. Don't go all Talleyrand on me now.

Napoleon: I want you to be my beloved Joséphine! No, wait, scratch that. That's an awful thing to say.

Napoleon: I want you take your place beside Joséphine in my heart. There we go.

Fou: Fo fo fooou, fou!

Mash: ......

Mash: ...Y-you really didn't turn him down...?

Ophelia: B-because the very idea was preposterous! It was so stupid, it didn't even merit a response!

Ophelia: Regardless of your absurd claims, my silence in no way indicates an affirmative answer!

Napoleon: That's all okay with me.... I fell in love with you.

Ophelia: !

Napoleon: Yeah, that's right. I'm in love with you. How's that? Are you convinced now? Ma chérie, Ophelia Phamrsolone?

Fujimaru 1: You're serious, aren't you?

Fujimaru 2: Oh wow, I don't think you're joking...

Napoleon: You bet I'm serious. Never been more serious about anything. What's so strange about that? She's one of my main motivations.

Napoleon: If a woman I'm in love with is here,I can't just sit back and do nothing, now can I!?

Fou: Fou! Fo fou! Kyau, kyaaau!

Ophelia: Y-your words ring just as hollow now as they did back then...I can't stand to listen any longer.

Ophelia: Why would you even think to propose to someone you'd only just–

Napoleon: Haven't you ever heard of love at first sight!?

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: I have neither time nor patience for jokes. Any Heroic Spirit fighting for humanity is our enemy.

Ophelia: Your Majesty, will you grant me permission to stain this castle's walls with his filthy blood?

Scáthach-Skadi: No.

Scáthach-Skadi: What are you saying, Ophelia? This man seems as if he would make a perfect partner for you.

Scáthach-Skadi: Regardless, ending the life of one I have elected to love is a grave crime. You may be my daughter in charge of growing the Tree of Emptiness, but that is a request I cannot grant.

Scáthach-Skadi: You will capture him without killing him, Ophelia.

Ophelia: ...As you wish, my queen.

Ophelia: ...You heard her, Saber. Neutralize them. No killing.

Ophelia: And make extra sure you don't kill Mash Kyrielight, even by accident.

Sigurd: Got it.

Sigurd: Precision work isn't exactly my specialty, but if that's your order for me, fine. So I just have to not kill the shield girl, right?

Ophelia: I meant what I said, Saber.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Oh, my, Ophelia. You can be quite the stubborn girl, can't you.

Sigurd: Heh. This won't take long.

Mash: ...!

Mash: It should be impossible to sense magical energy here, and yet...It's still unbelievably powerful...!

Mash: And then there's that odd air about him...

Fujimaru 1: I don't like this! I don't like this at all!

Fujimaru 2: This isn't like bloodlust. It's more like...

Mash: Ortinax output is stable. This battle won't turn out like the last one! I'm ready to go, Senpai!

Napoleon: Well damn...guess I'm the one who stirred this pot! Sorry 'bout that! But don't worry; if we're gonna do this, I'll make damn sure you two make it out alive!

Napoleon: Time to undo some of the damage I just did to my reputation here!

Napoleon: ...Go ahead and get ALL your hopes up! I won't let you down, no matter how big they are!


Sigurd: ...Well, well. You are moving better than the last time.

B:Mash: We're really straining the Ortinax, but its output hasn't fallen. I can still fight, Senpai!

B:Mash: I think Napoleon is somehow providing some sort of spell boost...

Napoleon: Don't tell me you forgot? I'm the only hero of humanity in this whole Lostbelt.

Napoleon: I believe I'm basically calibrated for fighting here. And that's not even the only trick I have up my sleeve!

Napoleon: How 'bout you, great hero?

Sigurd: ......

Sigurd: ...Now I see. Joint resistance from Proper Human History, huh.

Sigurd: Clever. Hehe, good. This would just be boring if you couldn't fight back at least a little.

B:Mash: ...?

B:Mash: (Am I imagining things, or is Sigurd smiling...? )

Sigurd: Ophelia. Release one of my limiters.

E:Ophelia: Very well. I'll give you that.

E:Ophelia: ...Forced Spirit Origin Ascension limiter release. Destroy all who would stand in our way, my knight.

B:Mash: A Spirit Origin Ascension...!?

Sigurd: Phase two limiter released. Authorization granted to Heroic Spirit Sigurd for full employment of the demonic sword Gram.

Sigurd: Now then, how should I kill you? Which one should I kill first? Ah, what am I saying. I've gotta start with you, lover boy. Maybe that'll shut you up.

Napoleon: Oho, more armor and blades, huh! I see, I see. So you're starting to take us seriously, eh?

B:Mash: I can tell his magical energy is spiking even higher! I haven't even touched him, and I can still feel the Ortinax groaning under the strain...

Mash: But...but I can still keep on going, Senpai! The Ortinax's auto-maintenance is keeping its output high and stable!

E:Ophelia: ...I see. You really have grown, haven't you...

E:Ophelia: You never showed such fierce determination before, Mash.

E:Ophelia: It's dazzling to behold. And beautiful.

Mash: ...

Mash: Ophelia, I don't know what the Crypters' reasons are for doing this.

Mash: But even if I did, I can't walk matter how strong the Lostbelt Servant you control may be!

Mash: We know someone who may not have been strong himself, but if he were here now, he would still yell at us not to lose just because our opponent was stronger...!

E:Ophelia: I see. You've grown so much stronger since I last saw you, Mash. Shockingly so, in fact.

E:Ophelia: ...I'm sorry about this.

Napoleon: Huh...!?

Napoleon: Hey, Ophelia. What's up with your eye? Why's it look like that...?

Mash: It's a Mystic Eye! But I don't know exactly what it can do!

Mash: Senpai! Napoleon! Be ready! She's about to use some sort of powerful spell!

Ophelia: ...Phenomena, schufen auf.

Ophelia: That armor of yours is impressive. Ich will es niemals glänzen sehen.

Mash: !!!

Mash: Ah...! The load on the Ortinax just increased exponentially...!

Mash: Output is dropping rapidly across the board,even though the auto-maintenance is working fine...!

Mash: Wh-what's going on...?

Mash: Does this were able to rewind phenomena...over a limited area...?

Ophelia: My Mystic Eye's rank is Jewel.

Ophelia: Once I have decided I don't want to see something shine,it will never shine in front of me.

Ophelia: I never showed this to you before, did I? Well, now you know: this is what I can do if I feel like it.

Ophelia: I'm sorry, Mash,but you're going to sit this one out.

Mash: So once you define a target,you can manipulate its passage through time...

Mash: But, that's the domain of True Magic! Even with a Mystic Eye, that could never just be an extension of any regular magecraft!

Mash: There must be more to it...Something I'm not seeing...

Napoleon: Worry about that later! Here he comes!

Sigurd: Done talking? I want to get back to it. Let me show you what Gram can do when its limits have been released.

Sigurd: It's still a ways off from its true power, but you'll just have to deal with that. There's no way Ophelia's going to let me use my third phase.

Sigurd: Now, time for you to die. Hehe. Hehe, hehehehe!

Napoleon: Hahahaha! Whadda ya know! This great hero guy hits even harder than the giants!

Napoleon: ...Looks like I can't let my guard down, even for a moment. Mademoiselle Mash, if your armor's not working right, just hang in there and focus on defense!

Mash: No! I can...still fight...! I'm not going to turn and run...not for a third time against the same opponent!

Mash: I can't turn back now, Senpai!

Fujimaru 1: Don't you dare overdo it!

Fujimaru 2: Okay, but don't push yourself too far!

Mash: ...I won't! I'll make sure to keep just shy of reckless!


Napoleon: ...Ooh la la, Lostbelt Servant! So this is the power of your demonic sword, huh!

Napoleon: It's strong. Really strong. Makes me wish I had a whole bunch of them for my Grande Armée!

Napoleon: But, I guess that'll have to wait for another time.

Napoleon: Hey, Ophelia! I'm happy you're looking my way,but can't you look a little happier, too!?

Napoleon: Not that angry is a bad look for you, but lighten up a little! I did come to profess my love!

Ophelia: ...

Sigurd: ...Hmph. Don't let him get to you, Ophelia.

Sigurd: A Heroic Spirit, and a hybrid, huh. You're more of a challenge than I thought. Something's helping you out.

Sigurd: Maybe it's because you materialized with power your own Spirit Origin could never hope to possess.

Sigurd:'s still not enough. The best you can hope for is Ophelia's Mystic Eye to stop you in your tracks.

Sigurd: You're going to need to be a hell of a lot stronger if you plan on killing me.

Sigurd: If you're going to prattle on about love, you'd better make sure you're good enough to back it up.

Napoleon: ...Well now. That's food for thought, isn't it?

Scáthach-Skadi: ...That was a most impressive dance, everyone.

Scáthach-Skadi: But I am afraid it is curtains now. Ophelia, that is quite enough.

Scáthach-Skadi: Poor Mash is about to collapse. Can you not see how she is gasping for breath?

Scáthach-Skadi: I cannot abide seeing my beloved children fight to the death.

Mash: I-I'm...fine...(Huff, huff)...I can...still...(Gasp, gasp)...

Mash: ...This is...nothing...We've always...

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: As you wish, Your Majesty. Saber.

Sigurd: Hmph.

Sigurd: I'm warning you both: next time, I won't hold back.

Scáthach-Skadi: Hmm...Well, this may not be entirely necessary,but I shall finish this myself.

Scáthach-Skadi: Oh, do not worry. I won't kill you, and you will feel no pain.

Scáthach-Skadi: I'm afraid you will have to stay in the dungeon. But be warned: resisting this time will not yield such a pleasant dance as just unfolded here.

Scáthach-Skadi: Let me show you what I mean...

Fujimaru 1: My...body...!

Fujimaru 2: Can't...move...!?

Scáthach-Skadi: Bow down; rejoice that such divine power courses through your body. Bow down; this is the light of the rune inherited from the Allfather himself.

Scáthach-Skadi: I will not hurt you, nor will I rob you of your magical energy. I have simply rendered your body inert.

Scáthach-Skadi: Now stay. Savor the depths of my godly power and love.

Mash: Khh...! Sen...pai...!

Napoleon: ...Now I see. This is something...!

Napoleon: Wow, gods really are something else...! I seriously can't even lift a finger...!

Ophelia: ...

Scáthach-Skadi: People of Proper Human History. My new children.

Scáthach-Skadi: I am a bit disappointed to see this is apparently the best you can do, that this is all the combined power of humanity and Heroic Spirits can offer.

Scáthach-Skadi: I was expecting something more after I was told you destroyed the king who ruled over the Russian Lostbelt, but it seems you are not quite up to the task of killing a god.

Scáthach-Skadi: Know your place,and accept sweet repose in your mother's lap.

F:Warrior's Voice: Couldn't agree more, Queenie...Gods are eternal. Gods are absolute.

F:Warrior's Voice: Humans could never kill one. That's still true for those of us who have become Divine Spirits, too.

Mash: A new threat...!

Napoleon: Haha, guess we're not the only surprise visitors today! It's hard to make out her presence with the castle's magical energy getting in the way, but it looks like–

Mash: A Servant, but...! Senpai, that Servant isn't a Heroic Spirit. She's–

F:Warrior's Voice: Damn straight. I'm no Heroic Spirit.

Caenis: ...I'm a Divine Spirit!

Mash: ...!!!

Scáthach-Skadi: My, my. What a strange thing to say.

Scáthach-Skadi: A Divine Spirit, you said?

Scáthach-Skadi: No such hollow things are to be found in my Scandinavia. Here, I am the sole god.

Scáthach-Skadi: In which case, you must be...Ah, yes, I see. You are here from another Lostbelt.... Ophelia?

Ophelia: This is Caenis, the Divine Spirit...A Lostbelt Servant who serves Lord Kirschtaria.

Ophelia: She's a special emissary with the Authority to cross between Lostbelts in order to inspect them.

Ophelia: Would you agree with that assessment, Caenis?

Caenis: Yeah, sure. That's all accurate.

Caenis: But you know, after poking my head in here and seeing a demigod and a demonic sword wielder going at it, followed by an actual god showing off her power...

Caenis: ...I can't help but want a little reward for myself.

Ophelia: Reward?

Caenis: Don't worry. I'm not demanding you hand over your life or anything.

Caenis: Yeah, I think just one oughta do the trick. It's been dull, not having anyone to kill these last few months.

Caenis: Almost as dull as following your precious man's orders all the damn time...

Napoleon: (She's a barrel of destructive impulses, this one. This ancient Greek Divine Spirit's obviously pretty excited about killing. )

Napoleon: (And she's got some kind of boost from the god of the sea or something. No wonder she feels powerful enough to go around calling herself a Divine Spirit. )

Napoleon: (So...who's she going to kill? )

Caenis: Hey, woman, I'm talking to you. Phamrsolone, was it?

Napoleon: (Where's her spear gonna end up falling? )

Napoleon: (Ophelia? Nah, it won't be her. But it'll be someone similar, since she's not gunning to fight a Servant. )

Napoleon: (In which case...)

Ophelia: ...I can't authorize that. I'm certain you still don't have permission to fight.

Ophelia: Your power is meant to help Lord Kirschtaria make his ideals reality. It is not to be used for idle mischief.

Caenis: The hell? Ideals? Did you just say “ideals”? That jackass's goals have nothing to do with ideals.

Caenis: He's just a vindictive little bitch. Ambition. Desires too big for his human britches! That's all he's got!

Caenis: So much so that I actually feel better about myself for losing to such a shitty piece of work!

Caenis: ...But I digress. I've still gotta decide who I'm gonna kill.

Caenis: Don't worry, Phamrsolone, it's not you. No, I think I'm gonna go for...

Caenis: ...the Master of Chaldea! Haha, so you killed the King of Russia, did you!?

Caenis: Wouldn't you know it,I've got a thing for killing kings myself!

Caenis: Looks like you and me got a lot in common. So I got an idea...

Caenis: Let's have a go!

Caenis: ...Hey, you. What do you think you're doing,pointing that thing at me?

Napoleon: Ooh la la! Sorry 'bout that! Wouldn't you know it, my arm just slipped a bit!

Napoleon: You can't be more than ten centimeters away, putting you in point-blank range of a cannon. Divine Spirit or not, I don't think you can dodge it...Wanna find out?

Caenis: Ha!

Caenis: So you can move, King of Europe! And here I thought you'd been hit with a Primordial Rune!

Napoleon: Haha! Let's just say this is one of those adrenaline rush things! Maybe you've heard about them!

Caenis: Haha! I like your style, Heroic Spirit! You're a straight shooter, in more ways than one. Makes you easy to kill!

Napoleon: ...Well now. Didn't think you'd block the round with just a hand.

Caenis: 'Course I did! Didn't hurt a damn bit! I'm a Divine Spirit, remember!?

Caenis: What, you don't believe me? Go ahead, fire another. 'Course, if you're too weak to even do that...

Napoleon: ...!

Caenis: ...Why don't I just take a little off the top of your head!

Caenis: ...The hell's up with this castle? What, is it too fancy for the likes of me? Killing against the rules or something?

Scáthach-Skadi: Indeed, I prefer elegance over boorishness.

Sigurd: You heard the queen. She's the scariest thing here. If she says no, there's no arguing.

Caenis: Yeah? Do I look like I care? Outta my way, sword boy.

Sigurd: These are my quarry. I don't recall tossing them to a feral beast.

Sigurd: So before you start yapping about a reward again, maybe you do your damn job and tell us your master's message.

Caenis: So somebody never learned to share, huh? Didn't peg you for such a loyal lapdog.

Sigurd: Dog, huh. That brings back memories. Everything even similar to those disappeared from here ages ago.

Sigurd: There aren't any animals left to draw analogies to here in Scandinavia. They're all gone. It's all going away.

Sigurd: That goes for you too, Caenis. I don't know how rotten the world you come from is, but now that you're in this one, you'll end up the same way.

Sigurd: If that's what you want, go ahead;keep doing what you're doing.

Sigurd: I'll make sure you end up staying here for a long, looong time.

Caenis: ...? If you think I'm gonna be scared by–

Caenis: ...Aha. So that's how it is. Interesting.

Caenis: Russia was nice and simple, but this Scandinavian Lostbelt's a real mess. It's way more interesting!

Caenis: Don't worry, I'm not so uncouth as to do anything to ruin it. I'd say someone else has that covered.

Caenis: You win. No more killing unarmed brats. I'll let [♂ him /♀ her] off the hook for killing the Tsar.

Caenis: Best to do this sort of thing in your own world,anyway. Ain't that right, sword boy?

Sigurd: ...

Ophelia: ...Are you satisfied now, Caenis?

Caenis: Can't you tell? I couldn't be more done. Don't you talk to me, Ophelia.

Caenis: Just shut up. Don't say a word, don't even look at me. I hate women like you more than anything. I'd have killed you long ago if you weren't a Crypter.

Ophelia: How odd. We actually agree about something.

Ophelia: But how we feel has nothing to do with our jobs. Now hurry up and do yours.

Ophelia: Back in Russia your only duty was to act as an observer, but this time around you've got a little something extra, haven't you?

Caenis: Oho? You've got more guts than I gave you credit for.

Caenis: If you can give as good as you take,you might not be so bad after all.

Caenis: ...Here. It comes with a message from my boss just this once.

Kirschtaria: A pleasure to make your acquaintance, Queen of the Scandinavian Lostbelt. My apologies for delivering a recorded message rather than visiting in person.

Kirschtaria: I am Kirschtaria Wodime.

Kirschtaria: I am in charge of the largest Lostbelt,Greece, and the leader of the Crypters.

Kirschtaria: As for you, Chaldeans, welcome to this bleached Earth. As your “senpai,” I'm proud to welcome you here.

Kirschtaria: While I confess that doing so required some speculation on my part, I have taken the liberty of sending this message to the king of Scandinavia with the assumption that you will all be present as well.

Kirschtaria: Given how you triumphed in Russia, and how close this Lostbelt lies to it, I am confident you will have reached it by the time this message is delivered.

Mash: ...!

Kirschtaria: Our goal is to rebuild human history. This entails recreating a land for gods to inhabit.

Kirschtaria: Proper Human History was not a mistake per se,but neither was it correct.

Kirschtaria: Instead of loss and gain resulting in a net benefit, they became caught in a system that resulted in unchecked growth for both.

Kirschtaria: It was an incredible waste. What should have been a virtuous cycle was effectively stuck in a rut.

Kirschtaria: The Foreign God wept to see the state of this planet,and decided to grace it with their presence.

Kirschtaria: As Crypters, our duty is to help the Lostbelts take root and become stronger than Proper Human History.

Kirschtaria: The King of Mages' answer to humanity's failure was to have other humans incinerate it, but not me. I choose to rewrite history, with the Foreign God's help.

Kirschtaria: People have had gods running the world behind the scenes since ancient times. They believed gods were both the planet itself, and the laws of nature that governed it.

Kirschtaria: But humanity lacked self-awareness. Those laws were meant to be used, not obeyed.

Kirschtaria: It was that mistake that led to humanity and the gods parting ways.

Kirschtaria: Humanity did not forget the gods. They abandoned that possibility once they became unable to handle them.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...

Kirschtaria: Your Majesty, Queen of Scandinavia.

Kirschtaria: You care for a mythological ecosystem that met its end in a self-imposed ruin, rather than one which ended when its people forgot it, like Greece.

Kirschtaria: Keep the Tree of Emptiness safe. As long as it exists,that Lostbelt will never vanish.

Kirschtaria: I implore you to turn your back on your fate, and to choose the path of survival. Once you do that, I would like nothing more than for you to face off against my own Tree of Emptiness.

Kirschtaria: My Tree of Emptiness is already fully grown.

Kirschtaria: While the Norse world has Yggdrasil, a world tree that serves as the foundation of its every realm, Greece now has a Tree of Emptiness supporting the very heavens...

Kirschtaria: Thus, it has been dubbed the World Tree Atlas by my ally,the great god Zeus.

Kirschtaria: Chaldeans, I can say that, as far as you are concerned,Atlas is your greatest and most important target.

Kirschtaria: The roots of my Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness now cover eighty percent of the earth's surface.

Kirschtaria: Even if you succeed at cutting down every other Lostbelt's tree, you will never be able to restore Proper Human History so long as Atlas remains standing.

Kirschtaria: Queen of Scandinavia, you are a god,and so I have high hopes for you.

Kirschtaria: ...Indeed, you could even think of this as the gods taking revenge on humans for usurping their throne.

Kirschtaria: As for me, I am prepared to make full use of the gods despite being human myself.

Kirschtaria: I will create a fully realized Age of Gods. A glorious history where human weakness is a thing of the past.

Kirschtaria: It will be a world that will endure no matter how heated human consciousness becomes. A place where life can flourish with neither deficit nor fragmentation.

Kirschtaria: Be warned that I will show no mercy to any who would stand in the way of that goal. I hope that, alongside Ophelia, you will choose the best possible future.

Ophelia: Lord Kirschtaria...

Fujimaru 1: You know...

Fujimaru 2: That kind of sounded like...a declaration of war...

Ophelia: Wrong. It was a declaration of victory. That is how you should hear it.

Ophelia: Thanks to Lord Kirschtaria's leadership, we Crypters have already begun a new chronicle for humanity.

Scáthach-Skadi: Hmm. So he is the Crypters' leader.

Scáthach-Skadi: I see, I see. So he wishes to restore the Age of Gods,and help us take our revenge. Fascinating.

Scáthach-Skadi: Does that mean I am the closest to his ideal?

Scáthach-Skadi: If my Scandinavia's Tree of Emptiness were to continue growing as it is, it will eventually swallow up his Lostbelt as well...

Ophelia: Of course, Lord Kirschtaria would be perfectly happy with that outcome.

Ophelia: He has even said he would like nothing better, and that the Greek Lostbelt is not necessarily the best.

Scáthach-Skadi: Oho, is that so? How admirable of him. What's more, he says he will make full use of us gods...

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe. Hahahahaha!

Scáthach-Skadi: Indeed, my Scandinavia never did have anyone willing to voice such grand ambitions!

Caenis: Right? He's the damn avatar of human foolishness and hubris. I bet he and Zeus get along great.

Scáthach-Skadi: Zeus. He's an ancient god from the Mediterranean, yes?

Scáthach-Skadi: Ahh, I remember now. Caenis. I've heard that name before.

Scáthach-Skadi: As I recall, it belonged to a ferocious member of the Argonautai: a tyrant who boasted that she was a god by virtue of her strength, beloved by the sea...

Scáthach-Skadi: No, wait. She was not beloved by the sea, but tainted by–

Caenis: ...!

Ophelia: Caenis! What are you–

Scáthach-Skadi: So, you would point your spear at an ally's throat? This says a great deal to your Master's judgment in adjutants.

Ophelia: Stop it, Caenis...! Do you mean to completely betray Lord Kirschtaria's trust in you!?

Caenis: ...Tch.

Ophelia: ...Begone, Caenis. Your role in this Lostbelt is over.

Ophelia: Don't bother stopping by the other Lostbelts, either.

Ophelia: ...I'm told that a number of Heroic Spirits from Proper Human History have shown up in the ocean now that the god of the seas is gone.

Ophelia: I ask that you return straight to Lord Kirschtaria,without stopping anywhere else.

Caenis: ...Good point. Besides, I've still gotta check in on that pain in the ass Artemis.

Caenis: Yeah, don't worry. I'll be outta your hair and on my way straight back to your precious Lord Kirschtaria real soon.

Caenis: See you around. So long, Chaldeans.

Caenis: You guys are probably gonna rot in this dungeon or end up on the wrong end of sword boy's blade. Not gonna lie, shit's lookin' BLEAK for you. But hey, I want a chance to kill you idiots myself, so hurry up and crush the weirdos in this Lostbelt.

Caenis: Now that we've had a chance to say hello and all that...Next time we meet, the gloves come off.

Caenis: Make sure you're halfway decent warriors by then. If I wanted something with lifeless eyes, I'd go fishing!

Section 7: The Other Goddess (Beginning)

Napoleon: ...Listen close. Once we make our way into their base...

Napoleon: ...the best case is we find the Paper Moon and info about the tree without any trouble, but we can't count on that being the case.

Napoleon: For one thing, the queen's gonna know we're there,and we CANNOT take her on alone. Period.

Napoleon: She's a goddess who's held on to her power since the Age of Gods. The embodiment of nature itself. Can't even get a good read on her magical energy.

Napoleon: We won't have a chance against her unless we take some special steps. That's how strong she is.

Napoleon: All that said...the queen's not gonna kill us.

Napoleon: So...

Napoleon: ...we're gonna make becoming prisoners part of the plan.

Fou: Fooou!? Fo!

Mash: So, um, if I understand're saying the queen will move to capture us...?

Napoleon: That's right.

Napoleon: She's like a big ball of pure mercy. She really,truly loves everyone, human and Heroic Spirit.

Napoleon: Once she decides not to kill someone, she won't. She might talk about killing her enemies, but honestly, there's just no one who can threaten her.

Napoleon: That's how it went with me. She couldn't even be bothered to fight me, no matter how many shots I fired at her. I may as well have been a fly.

Napoleon: She'll never bother with sounding alarms, putting out garrisons, or anything like that. The fact that it's still business as usual around here is proof of that.

Napoleon: I get why you'd be worried, but don't forget who I am. I'm Napoleon. Emperor of France.

Napoleon: Not only that, I've had time to reflect on my failures from when I was alive!

Napoleon: So trust me when I say I know what I'm doing!

Fujimaru 1: You got it, Supreme Commander!

Mash: R-right!

Fujimaru 2: Guess we don't have much choice!

Mash: Th-that's true...! He seems to know a lot more than we do,and he's also saved us once before.

Mash: I'll trust him, too!

Napoleon: All right! It might be kind of a stretch to call this a strategy, but it's what we're going with!


“Hmm, I see. ”

“So that was your strategy, huh? ”

“You certainly are daring for a Master, aren't you? ”

“I can't say I mind, personally...”

“But I also can't help but worry about you,so I'll lend a hand. ”


Mash: ......

Mash: ...This is the dungeon, Master......We really did end up prisoners...

Fou: Fou, fouuu, fou.

Napoleon: So far so good! ...Well, no, it's not all good. I'm sorry for putting you through that.

Napoleon: We could've avoided that battle with Sigurd if I hadn't been so brazen with my courtship.

Napoleon: I really didn't think that one through...Sorry again!

Mash: N-not at all! Your plan did work out in the end!

Fujimaru 1: We did accomplish our goal without losing anyone!

Mash: That's true. And nobody ended up hurt, either...

Fujimaru 2: I'll admit it was a close call, but we made it.

Napoleon: It was too damn close, wasn't it? And it's all my fault. I'm sorry!

Mash: My Ortinax doesn't have any critical damage,and it seems like everything is in working order.

Mash: We're in just as good shape now as we were before we made our way in here!

Mash: So, um...I'm a little hesitant to ask this, but...

Mash: Napoleon, are you...serious about...?

Napoleon: Ophelia?

Mash: Y-yes. You didn't sound like you were joking about...that. Or like you wanted to confuse them.

Mash: So...did you mean what you–

Napoleon: Sure did. I fell for her hard.

Napoleon: ...Well, more accurately,my heart just went out to her.

Napoleon: I don't think I had much compassion back when I was alive, but now, it seems like that part of me has been cranked up to eleven!

Napoleon: Guess being a Servant can be a real pain in the ass, huh! I wouldn't have to worry about feelings and stuff if I were just a mindless battle robot.

Mash: ...

Napoleon: Anyway, all that aside,I'm well aware she's a Crypter.

Napoleon: I know they're using the Trees of Emptiness to prevent the continuation of humanity, and that we'll have to take them out eventually.

Napoleon: I know all that. And even so...I'm siding with you two.

Napoleon: I won't betray your trust. I won't stop fighting until we've saved Proper Human History.

Fou: Fou, fooou?

Napoleon: Oh? You believe me, pupper?

Napoleon: Haha, easy there, boy! I guess I did say I was okay with dogs, didn't I? Hahaha.

Napoleon: ......

Napoleon: ...Not all the marks I left on history were glorious. I made a lot of bad decisions, too, like the one that resulted in the destruction of my Grand Armée.

Napoleon: I wasn't very good to the two women I loved, either. They must hate me, and I don't blame them.

Mash: You mean...your first fiancée,and Joséphine, your actual first wife...?

Napoleon: Yeah. They were both good women.

Napoleon: I promised them I'd make them happy, then I went and let them down hard. I'm the worst kind of guy around.

Napoleon: Oh, and what about my last wife, Maria Luisa, or the lover I took when I was exiled...Was I able to make them happy? I honestly couldn't tell you.

Napoleon: But, I don't pretend the past never happened. If humanity goes away, everything else'll follow. Everything.

Napoleon: It'd be great if all we lost was just the sadness and tears, but that's not how it'll work. Everything, good and bad, will be gone. Forever.

Napoleon: My own glory doesn't really matter now, but to see all the joys, hopes, and dreams people have held throughout history disappear...

Napoleon: Well, I just can't let that happen, now, can I?

Napoleon: Anyway, since I'm sure you've still got some concerns...why don't we go ahead and make it official with a temporary contract!

Fujimaru 1: That would be great, but...

Fujimaru 2: Are you sure?

Fujimaru 1: That would be great, but...

Fujimaru 2: Are you sure?

Napoleon: Haha, you're a good [♂ man /♀ woman], Private! Did you forget about my sympathies for one of our enemies already?

Napoleon: I really don't like the idea of betraying anyone,but I also can't deny that I've fallen for her.

Napoleon: In which case, it only makes sense to have some insurance. So yeah, go for it. It'll make me feel better, too.

Napoleon: Love does tend to drive a body mad, you know.... Not that I'm one to talk!

Napoleon: All right, Private, let's do this thing!

Napoleon: ...I accept.

Napoleon: There. Now we have a temporary contract.

Napoleon: Oho!

Napoleon: Looks like my Spirit Origin's in even better shape now! This is great!

Napoleon: Once again, it's good to be fighting beside you, Maître!

Fou: Fou! Fooou!

Napoleon: Haha, you happy about this too? Aww, you really are a good boy.

Napoleon: So, now that our contract's in place, back to the plan! We're prisoners now, just like I expected...

Napoleon: this is where we set about taking back the Paper Moon and gathering info on the Tree of Emptiness!

Napoleon: If we had an Assassin on hand, we could have them sneak in all stealthy like, but since we don't...

Napoleon: ...I think we'll just have to go with a feint. I'll draw their attention as much as possible, while you–

Fou: Fou?

Mash: ...Senpai?

Mash: Senpai, you're pale! It looks like the same thing that happened to you at Chaldea a few times before...

Mash: Excuse me, Senpai, but I need to run a quick emergency medical diagnostic while–

Mash: Senpai!


???: . . Well, well. We don't see your kind tumbling down here every day.

???: You definitely didn't come down here of your own accord. You clearly fell down.

???: Haha, they must have taken advantage of a flaw in your temporary contract.

???: They were able to forge a connection with you with no problem, but you must have fallen down here when you weren't able to make it to the dream.

???: ...Heh. I suppose this, too, is fate.

Fujimaru 1: You are...

???: Don't push yourself too hard. That's it. You don't know me.

???: There you go. Just forget about it. Regrets and voids that gnaw away at people in their dreams are MY quarry. No one else's.

Fujimaru 2: I don't know where, but I've heard your voice before.

???: ...You're pretty sharp, aren't you?

???: But no, there's no way you know me. And no need for you to.

???: Regrets and voids that gnaw away at people in their dreams are MY quarry. No one else's. Factual records of me shouldn't exist.

???: ...Now then, if we're going to send you back the way you came...we'll have to start by burning these things away.

???: It'd help if you could form your sense of self soon,but that might be asking a bit too much.

???: Stand back.

Fujimaru 1: Hang on.

Fujimaru 2: I'm still lost, but if it's dangerous, I'll fight too.

???: ...Hmph.


???: ...Too easy.

Fujimaru 1: What was all that...?

Fujimaru 2: What is this place?

???: A dream. Closer to a nightmare, really.

???: Once you wake up,you'll forget all about this place.

???: But don't drop your guard just because it's a dream. Your soul and sense of self fell down here.

???: If a beast sinks its fangs into you, it'll rip open your sense of self. If one tears you apart, your soul will just plain disappear.

???: So if you want to make it out of here alive, hurry. Crawl along the path that brought you here and talk to the one who invited you to this dream.

???: Go on, Fujimaru. Escape the darkness.


???: Well, well...

???: You found the power to summon your Heroic Spirits even though you are stuck in a dream.

???: Good. That means your sense of self has grown stronger.

???: Remember yourself. Be very, very aware of who you are, and keep moving forward.

???: Come. Onward...


...... ...

???: We're here.

???: Imagine opening your eyes. Sense those who lack form with your soul.

???: Rejoice. You have arrived.

???: Can you see it?

Fujimaru 1: I can see something big. Isn't that...

???: That's right. You already know what that thing is.

Fujimaru 2: Is that a giant...?

???: No. No, that...thing is not a giant.

???: It may possess gigantic power, but it was power that belonged to a human. It is a hero among heroes, one who tore through supernatural beings to lay claim to glory.

???: Whoever invited you to this dream would seem to be a truly fascinating individual.

Gigantic Guard:


Fujimaru 1: Here he comes!

???: There is no path leading backwards. If you are to proceed, you must defeat it.

Fujimaru 2: If we can't go around him, we'll have to go through him!

???: Continue onward. Defeat it. See how far your power can take you...


Gigantic Guard:


Sitonai: “Good work, Berserker. ”

Sitonai: “Thank you for protecting me. ”

Sitonai: “You've been such a good guardian...”

Sitonai: “But it's okay. ”

Sitonai: “You can rest now. ”

Sitonai: “Please let [♂ him /♀ her] pass. ”

Gigantic Guard:1-light...

Fujimaru 1: Did you hear that?

Fujimaru 2: That sounded like a girl...

???: I see...

???: That voice you heard is not meant for my ears. It belongs to the one who invited you into this dream.

???: Your soul and sense of self returned to the dream the moment you destroyed that guard's phantasm.

???: From here, you must continue on alone. Do not look back.

???: ...Haha. Don't make the same mistake Orpheus did.

Sitonai: “Good evening, Fujimaru. ”

Sitonai: “I'm so glad I finally got to meet you. Oh, but I'm sorry it had to happen this way. ”

Sitonai: “While you were in the middle of making your temporary contract with the Archer...”

Sitonai: “...I kind of went and forced my own connection in, too. ”

Sitonai: “I think that's what made you tumble into that strange place. ”

Sitonai: “But you made it out, and now, here we are. I'm so glad you made it. ”

Fujimaru 1: Who are you?

Sitonai: “Me? Well...”

Fujimaru 2: Do I know you...?

Sitonai: “Hmm...who knows. I certainly don't...”

Sitonai: “You see...”

Sitonai: “I'm someone with a deep bond to the Holy Grail. ”

Sitonai: “But, I'm not actually that person entirely. ”

Sitonai: “They say Heroic Spirits don't usually retain memories from their lives, and that definitely applies to me. I barely remember anything. ”

Sitonai: “I'm a droplet. A tiny, tiny droplet that dripped from someone who touched the Holy Grail. ”

Sitonai: “A fragment of a self and a soul that was given form–a Spirit Origin. ”

Sitonai: “I am...”

Sitonai: “ Alter Ego. ”“My name is Sitonai. ”

Section 8: The Other Goddess (End)

Fujimaru 1: I'm back...

Fujimaru 2: Did I someone in a dream...?

Mash: Senpai!

Napoleon: There you are, Private!

Fou: Fou! Fou fou!

Sitonai: ...I'm sorry. It's all my fault for forcing a connection with [♂ him /♀ her].

Sitonai: But it's okay. Your soul and self are all connected just fine now, so there's nothing to worry about.

Fujimaru 1: That voice...

Fujimaru 2: Sitonai?

Sitonai: Of course. Hehe, can you hear me okay?

Sitonai: It's been so long since I used my real voice to speak. It feels sort of weird to actually use my mouth...

Sitonai: Am I speaking all right?

Napoleon: Sure are. We can understand you just fine, little mademoiselle.

Napoleon: I never would've thought there was another Servant of humanity here besides me! Especially one trapped in the same dungeon!

Fujimaru 1: Wait. Hang on.

Fujimaru 2: I don't remember a child being in here with us.

Mash: Th-that's right, there wasn't! She just appeared out of nowhere shortly after you collapsed.

Mash: It didn't seem like she had just stopped using her spirit form, either...

Fou: Fo fou! Fou!

Sitonai: Oh, that? I was just using a sprouting magecraft...Please don't worry about it too much.

Sitonai: Usually I'm connected to the dungeon's depths, but when I saw you making a temporary contract with a Heroic Spirit...

Sitonai: ...I thought I'd try reaching out and making my own connection, and now, here I am.

Napoleon: So you were already a prisoner when we got here, huh. Guess that makes us comrades in arms!

Sitonai: Yep! Pretty much!

Sitonai: Let me introduce myself properly. I'm Alter Ego Sitonai.

Sitonai: I go by that because Sitonai is the one who's most outwardly visible on my Spirit Origin.

Sitonai: That said, Sitonai's name doesn't really belong to this body.

Sitonai: I think it'd help if I said I was a Pseudo-Servant, right?

Sitonai: As to this body's's Illya,daughter of the Einzberns.

Sitonai: Usually I only let people I'm really close to call me that...but since we all share an enemy, I'll make an exception in your case!

Fujimaru 1: (Illya...Have I heard that name before...? )

Fujimaru 2: (Am I imagining things, or...)

Napoleon: Now I see. So you're the Queen of Ice and Snow's enemy.

Mash: Einzbern...

Napoleon: Hm? You know who that is, Mash?

Mash: Y-yes. Einzbern is the name of a storied mage family with deep ties to the original Holy Grail War.

Mash: I've seen it in Chaldea's database several times. The Einzberns are one of the so-called “three great families”...

Mash: ...and in particular, they're known for producing Justeaze, the prodigious mage who created Fuyuki's Greater Grail.

Sitonai: Hmm. You really know a lot about this, don't you?

Sitonai: Yes, I'm the last daughter of the Einzbern family. I don't think I'm a Heroic Spirit who's made a mark on humanity or anything...

Sitonai: ...but I do have an inextricable bond to the Holy now, I'm a Servant on the side of Proper Human History!

Sitonai: Oh, but I should be clear: I'm not actually the last daughter of Einzbern.

Mash: ...?

Mash: Um...does that have something to do with you being an Alter Ego...?

Napoleon: Well, if we take that at face value, it would mean that she's an entirely separate personality.

Mash: True. And Alter Egos are listed in Chaldea's database as one of the Extra classes.

Fou: Fo, fou fou?

Sitonai: Aw, you're so cute. Hehe, you must be Fou!

Sitonai: Nice to meet you, Fou. I'm Illya. Come here.

Fou: Fou!

Sitonai: Heehee! You're so soft and fluffy!

Fujimaru 1: I think I know what Alter Egos are...

Sitonai: ...You do?

Sitonai: We're an Extra class that doesn't show up during normal Holy Grail Wars, so I don't think there's a lot known about us.

Sitonai: Hmm. You must have all kinds of different connections.

Fujimaru 2: What are Alter Egos again...?

Sitonai: We're an extra class of Spirit Origin, hence our Extra classification. We differ from normal Servants in all sorts of ways.

Sitonai: Hehe. That may be my class name,but it doesn't just mean my class.

Sitonai: In my case, I'm actually a High Servant, based on multiple goddesses with deep ties to the Holy Grail coming together into one Spirit Origin.

Sitonai: In fact, this body is made up of no less than three goddesses' Divided Spirits! And that is really something, you know!

Mash: A compound Divine Spirit Pseudo-Servant...! Th-that's...

Napoleon: ...I can't believe it. Multiple gods, all come together!?

Fou: Fou, faaau!

Sitonai: It is impressive, but it also has serious downsides. For one thing, they never shut up.

Napoleon: Really?

Sitonai: Hmm, how can I put this...

Sitonai: It's like these goddesses are roommates that are always fighting about something, with me and my snowy fields serving as their core.

Sitonai: They're all very seasoned goddesses, so believe me, it's hard having to play host to that skirmish.

Napoleon: A skirmish between gods...? ...I can't even imagine...

Sitonai: No?

Mash: U-um, may I ask you something, Sitonai...?

Sitonai: Please, call me Illya.

Mash: O-okay, Illya.

Mash: You said you materialized as a Servant from Proper Human History. Does that mean–

Sitonai: Yes. I'm on your side.

Sitonai: Remember I mentioned Einzbern? There you go.

Sitonai: There's no Einzbern family in any Lostbelt on this earth now, after all.

Sitonai: So a daughter of Einzbern is part of Proper Human History's resistance against the Lostbelts. Got it?

Fujimaru 1: Got it.

Mash: Y-yes. I understand, too.

Fujimaru 2: So, you're the goddess Illya, from Proper Human History...

Sitonai: Heehee. That's a little vague!

Sitonai: But, that's okay. You can think of me as a goddess from Proper Human History who's here to help you.

Sitonai: ...Although, I'm afraid I messed up.

Sitonai: I materialized here around the same time as that French emperor, but it wasn't long before Scáthach-Skadi found me and locked me up in here.

Sitonai: It's been so, sooo boring in here. I didn't even have anyone I could talk to...

Fou: Fo fou!

Sitonai: Aw, are you trying to cheer me up? Heehee, you're such a good boy. There, there.

Fou: Fou fou, fou.

Napoleon: A goddess in the dungeon, huh...All right, let me ask you: Why aren't you dead?

Napoleon: Are you just being kept alive out of “love” too?

Sitonai: I don't know.

Sitonai: Maybe she just wasn't willing to kill a god,or maybe...she wanted to use me somehow?

Sitonai: Say, to try and make this Lostbelt exist forever?

Napoleon: I see. Well, I suppose that's possible, but I didn't see any of the sort of preparations that'd need to be made for the kind of massive spell it'd take to sacrifice a god.

Sitonai: Hmm. Then, maybe...because I'm her daughter?

Napoleon: Daughter?

Mash: What do you mean by that...?

Sitonai: I'm composed of three northern goddesses: Sitonai of the Ainu, Louhi of the Finns...

Sitonai: ...and Freyja of the Norse. Hehe. Now do you get it?

Mash: Ah!

Fujimaru 1: That's another goddess from Norse mythology!

Mash: Yes! That means her Divinity is tied closely to this very Lostbelt!

Mash: Her domain was love and fertility, and she was beloved by gods and giants alike! I think her tears would turn to reddish gold, too...

Fujimaru 2: The goddess of love, fertility, and gold...

Sitonai: That's the one!

Sitonai: Accounts differ between the Völsunga Saga and the Edda, but they agree that Freyja was the daughter of Njörðr.

Sitonai: And then there's another legend that says Skadi and Njörðr were married.

Sitonai: According to the Freyja within me...

Sitonai: ...Skadi was Njörðr's second wife,which means–

Mash: She's your stepmother...?

Fou: Fwha!?

Napoleon: Aha, that explains it! That queen looked liked she was single to me...

Napoleon: ...but according to myth, she is married to the god of the sea, and is the stepmother of the goddess of love! I never would've guessed!

Napoleon: That wasn't really covered in the knowledge I gained when I materialized.

Mash: I don't know...This Lostbelt has a completely different history from ours. It seems they diverged in the Age of Gods.

Mash: Given that Scáthach of the Celts is part of the queen,and that she's the only god in this land...

Sitonai: Uh-huh.

Sitonai: That particular Skadi...Scáthach-Skadi,isn't Freyja's mother.

Sitonai: That's what the Freyja in me is saying, yep!

Sitonai: I'm certain Queen Scáthach-Skadi was never married to anyone.

Sitonai: Skadi. Daughter of the giant Þjazi,and goddess of snowy mountains.

Sitonai: Here, her fated marriage to Njörðr–or even to Odin,as other legends describe–never happened...

Sitonai: Now, she is the last goddess left, the sole survivor of Ragnarök, never once having to fulfill her destiny as the bride of the gods.

Sitonai: That's Scáthach-Skadi.

Sitonai: I bet she doesn't even know she could have ended up becoming Freyja's mother.

Sitonai: But then the Crypter came, and with her, knowledge of Proper Human History's Norse mythology.

Sitonai: That's why...she couldn't kill me.

Mash: So, you're the daughter she might have had.

Mash: Is that why she didn't hurt you...? Since you're fused with Freyja?

Sitonai: ...That's right.

Sitonai: To be honest, I have no idea what goes on in gods' minds, either.

Sitonai: But, even if I am from a different world...

Sitonai: Knowing that I could have been her daughter if things had gone differently...

Sitonai: Do you think that might have been enough to make her think I was special...?

Sitonai: At least...I don't think we can rule it out entirely...

Fujimaru 1: That's true.

Fujimaru 2: I think it's entirely possible.

Sitonai: Yeah. Yeah, you're right.

Fou: Fou!

Sitonai: Eek, you jumped on me again! You're so sweet! Who's a good boooy?

Fou: Fou! Fou fooou!

Sitonai: A-ah! Eek! Ahahaha, stop! You're tickling me!

Sitonai: Ahahahaha! P-please, I'm so ticklish! Somebody, get him off me!

Mash: Fou! S-stop that! What's gotten into you?

Mash: Why are you in such a good mood right now!?


Sitonai: ...Phew. I've never laughed so hard before!

Sitonai: I almost laughed until I cried. Hehe, in fact, I think that was the first time I've laughed since I materialized!

Fou: Fo...

Mash: Settle down, Fou.

Sitonai: I'm sorry, Fou. Wait until we're done talking, okay?

Fou: Fou!

Sitonai: Oh, right. I'm sure Fou doesn't mind the cold since he has that nice fluffy fur, but what about you?

Sitonai: This whole castle is made out of ice and snow, so you'll die from the cold if something goes wrong with your protection spells and the like.

Sitonai: Be careful, okay? If it helps, I can cast a warmth spell on you...

Fujimaru 1: Oh, that'd be great, thanks!

Sitonai: Okay, here you go!

Sitonai: That should have you nice and toasty in no time. Now you'll be able to sleep soundly, even in a bed with ice blankets and snow pillows!

Mash: (She cast that spell without even chanting! I know it can't have been a major spell, but still...)

Napoleon: (Guess that's what you get when you combine three goddesses into one Servant...)

Fujimaru 2: Thanks, but don't worry. I'm all set.

Sitonai: Are you sure? Okay, if you say so.

Sitonai: So, um, I think that's enough about me, right? What should we talk about next?

Fou: Fou, fou!

Mash: Fou.

Fou: Fo...

Napoleon: Hmm. Good question. Now that we have a Divine Spirit here with us, this seems like a great time to try and find out everything we can.

Sitonai: Is there something you'd like to know? I'm in a good mood right now, so I'll answer your questions.

Sitonai: I know all sorts of things, you know. I've used Louhi's magecraft to kill time, go on dream walks...

Sitonai: I know a lot about the castle itself, too. Including the people who live in it.

Napoleon: Oho. You don't say...

Fujimaru 1: What do you know about Sigurd?

Fujimaru 2: Is Sigurd really a Lostbelt Servant...?

Sitonai: Oooh, you really are sharp, aren't you?

Sitonai: Sigurd the Dragon Slayer, wielder of a demonic sword, and great hero of Norse legend.

Sitonai: I'm not sure if his exploits took place during the Age of Gods or the A. D. era, and Freyja won't tell me.

Sitonai: But...

Sitonai: ...I can at least say this much about the red-eyed Heroic Spirit who serves the Crypter:

Sitonai: He is not a Lostbelt Servant.

Sitonai: Or, at least, his Spirit Origin comes from Proper Human History. Freyja is shouting that much!

Napoleon: ...What!?

Mash: He's NOT a Lostbelt Servant!?

Mash: B-but, that doesn't make sense...

Mash: I'm not absolutely certain, but when we observed his magical energy in the Shadow Border, it was very different from a Servant of Proper Human History.

Mash: And when we fought him earlier, his magical energy clearly belonged to a Lostbelt Servant...!

Fou: Fooou, fou!

Napoleon: Well, if the three Divine Spirits that make up Sitonai are all certain about it, I can't imagine they don't have a reason.

Napoleon: Far as I'm concerned, this explains a lot. No wonder Siggy didn't seem like just another Servant.

Napoleon: Just look at how ridiculously strong he is. I know we'll need to do something about him eventually, but–

Sitonai: Not eventually. First.

Napoleon: Oh?

Sitonai: Sigurd's the one keeping the Paper Moon. You do want to get that compass back, right?

Sitonai: Same for the Tree of Emptiness, yes? I'd bet the Crypter with the eyepatch knows where it is.

Sitonai: And Sigurd always goes wherever the Crypter goes. Even her private quarters.

Mash: So, to get the Paper Moon back, or information about the tree...we have no choice but to defeat Sigurd...

Napoleon: Hmm. If you're right,then we have a serious problem.

Napoleon: Recovering the Paper Moon and locating the Tree of Emptiness just got a hell of a lot harder.

Napoleon: He's definitely stronger than I am, at least right now. We're not completely out of options, but...

Napoleon: ......

Fou: Fo? Fo fou?

Mash: Options? You mean, like that buff you gave us earlier?

Napoleon: Nah, I'm talking something bigger. A real trump card. Only thing is, it's kind of a handful–

Sitonai: Well, you do have to defeat Sigurd before anything else. Am I wrong?

Napoleon: Not at all, no!

Fou: Fo, fou!

Sitonai: Teehee. You're a great man, Emperor of France! I think you deserve a hint.

Sitonai: Sigurd may be very powerful, but he's not invincible. There is a way to fight him.

Sitonai: It should also help you resist Scáthach-Skadi's Primordial Runes, at least to some extent.

Mash: Is that–

Sitonai: Yes. The final option that might just be able to get you out of this predicament!

Sitonai: ...Of course, it's so potent that both the Crypter and Sigurd put a reeeally strong seal on it.

Sitonai: So I want you to do your best to get it,and then fight him with everything you've got!

Sitonai: Once you defeat Sigurd and recover the Paper Moon, you can make that Crypter tell you where the tree is.

Sitonai: Ooor you could just kill her and find the tree yourselves.

Fujimaru 1: I don't want to kill her.

Fujimaru 2: ...I want to believe we can reason with her.

Sitonai: I see. Well, of course, you're free to handle that however you'd like.

Sitonai: But, I do think you should try to cut down the Tree of Emptiness as soon as you can.

Mash: ......

Mash: That's a good point...

Mash: As long as there's even one Tree of Emptiness left,I don't think we'll be able to restore the world.

Mash: But, even so...

Mash: I think, in this particular case...reaching the Wandering Sea might be more important...

Sitonai: Hm?

Mash: ...When we first got here,that was our original plan.

Mash: The main reason we wanted to cut down the Tree of Emptiness was to lure Sigurd out–

Sitonai: No. You can't put off the Tree of Emptiness. It's too dangerous.

Sitonai: The longer you wait, the more it will grow.

Sitonai: What will you do if it ends up completely taking root?

Sitonai: No. You have to cut it down as soon as possible.

Napoleon: Makes sense. The bigger it gets, and the further down its roots go, the harder it'll be to chop it down.

Mash: ...

Napoleon: Well, if you're not sure what call to make, why don't you talk to the rest of your team? Assuming you can get back in touch with them, of course.

Fujimaru 1: Good point.

Fujimaru 2: We should talk to everyone on the Border about this.

Mash: ...Yes, Senpai.

Sitonai: Just don't say I didn't warn you.

Mash: ......

Napoleon: So what's this trick for fighting Sigurd you were talking about? Some kind of artifact or something?

Napoleon: Don't tell us it's a Holy Grail?

Sitonai: Unfortunately, no. If it were a Holy Grail,I would have already gotten my hands on it.

Sitonai: ...It's a goddess.

Sitonai: There's another Divinity here in this Lostbelt,in addition to Scáthach-Skadi and myself.

Sitonai: She's from Proper Human History, just like the gods within me, a part of humanity's final attempt at resistance made manifest.

Sitonai: That means she'll definitely be on your side.

Fou: Fo fou!

Sitonai: Oh, right. I should have referred to her as another pillar! Hehe, she might not be well defined enough to call her otherwise.

Sitonai: At any rate...Yah!

Sitonai: There, I just sent her location data to your terminal. Hehe, I've never used Atlas Institute-style magecraft before!

Sitonai: Phew. I'm kinda tired now, though...

Sitonai: It's been so long since I've talked to anyone,I think I might have overdone it.

Sitonai: So, I think this is a good time to wrap this up.

Mash: Ah, the door to our cell just opened...

Napoleon: You know, I think I did hear them saying something about how this prison is secured with a lock made of divine iron. Guess that means a Divine Spirit can open it up without even chanting a spell!

Fou: Fou, fo fo fou! Kyau!

Sitonai: I wish I could come along, but I'm afraid I need to stay here and go back to sleep.

Sitonai: The queen may not see you as a threat now, but that would change if I left this prison with you.

Sitonai: So since I can't come along, I threw in the unlocking and the hiding spells for free! Take care! I hope to see you again sometime!


Fou: Fo...

Napoleon: (Whoa there, pupper. Quiet now. )

Napoleon: (Looks like Divine Spirits have pretty impressive magecraft. Her spells made us completely invisible!
Even silenced our footsteps AND hid all signs of our magical energy! )

Mash: (Yes. Now that we're so well concealed...)

Mash: (...we might just be able to make it outside the castle, even with the queen's incredible ability to see what happens in her territory! )

Napoleon: (We're almost under the big bridge. Once we get there, we'll make our way back up to the ground and get as far away from the castle as we can! )

Fou: ......

Napoleon: (So you stay quiet until then. Got it? )

Napoleon: (Come on, you two. )

Napoleon: Good, we made it back to the ground! Just a little farther until we're outside the castle's perimeter!

Napoleon: The concealing spell's just about worn off...but that's okay. Activate those booster things and get us out!

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Mash: Right!

Fujimaru 2: Mash, get ready to use the Ollerus Board!

Mash: Understood, Senpai. Expanding the Ortinax Ollerus Board attachments now!

Fou: ...! Fouuu...Fou, fou!

Mash: Fou...? What's gotten into you? Is there something in those shadows over–

Koyanskaya: ...Hmph. This is why I can't stand stupid little beasts.

Koyanskaya: I was just about to pounce on you from behind and wipe you all out at once, but then it went and ruined that.

Fujimaru 1: ...Koyanskaya!

Fujimaru 2: You're in this Lostbelt too!?

Koyanskaya: Of course I am☆

Koyanskaya: Whether at the ends of the earth, the ends of space itself, or even a snowy country still stuck in the dark ages with no entertainment at all...

Koyanskaya: ...even if I have to play nice with Queen Lonely Hearts who's deluded herself into believing everyone loves her...

Koyanskaya: As long as there's a chance to make a profit, NFF Services will be there♡

Koyanskaya: Ugh, I really thought I could have counted on someone else to take out the trash. But, you know what they say! If you want something done right...

Mash: You...! Are you here to torment innocent people again, like you did in Russia!?

Koyanskaya: ...Hmm. Well, look at you, little girl. Looks like you can put up a halfway decent fight now.

Koyanskaya: ...Well that's just terrible. Are you sure YOU aren't the cold and heartless ones around here?

Koyanskaya: Still, I couldn't care less about the people here one way or the other, so I'll just let that comment slide!

Koyanskaya: Now then, getting down to business: if you're about to leave, it's time for you to pay up what you owe.

Koyanskaya: This ice castle may be deserted and downright awful to live in, but in this world it's on par with a five-star hotel! Accommodations that luxurious don't come cheap, you know.

Koyanskaya: Let's seeeeee...A short stay for three pathetic humans and one ratty little fur ball, that comes to...five quadrillion QP!

Koyanskaya: But not to worry! If you can't afford to pay in QP or quartz, then I'll happily settle for watching your death agonies instead!

Koyanskaya: I did tell you back in Russia that I'd see you again, didn't I?

Koyanskaya: I am as capable as I am beautiful, and unlike you humans,I never break my promises!

Fou: Fou, fooou...!

Napoleon: Whoa now, who is this lady,and how the hell do you know her!?

Napoleon: She's beautiful, sure, but she's also got the darkest aura I've ever seen. Joséphine had her bad days, sure...but never anything close to this!

Koyanskaya: Teeheehee, you're awfully sharp for a Servant I've never met before. It'll be a pleasure to kill you♡

Koyanskaya: Okay, everybody! That's enough chin-ups down there under the bridge! Come on out and announce yourselves with a nice loud roar now☆

Mash: Master! A large group of giants is emerging from under the bridge!

Napoleon: Who IS this woman, some kind of beast tamer? Does she come from the Bolshoi Circus or something!?

Mash: That's Koyanskaya, of NFF Services! She's working with the Crypters, and was partially responsible for destroying Chaldea!

Fujimaru 1: Pawning your dirty work off on subordinates again, huh?

Koyanskaya: Of course. Wrangling subordinates is what I do!

Koyanskaya: Besides, you three just aren't enough to motivate me personally.

Koyanskaya: I don't deal with the bottom of the barrel myself. If you want anything to do with me, you have to show you're worth my time.

Koyanskaya: All right, Jötnar, time to get to work!

Koyanskaya: Special honors go to those who do an exceptional job,so make sure to kill them all!

Mash: There are even more giants coming out from under the bridge now...! Master, this is–!

Napoleon: There's no reason for us to fight on her terms, Mash! Let's just get out of here!

Napoleon: I can see you've got some history with her,but save it for later!

Napoleon: Let's do this, Fujimaru! Mash, hurry up with those boards while we work on opening up a path!

Mash: R-right! Understood!


Mash: There, we've secured an exit route! Now's our chance, Master!

Fujimaru 1: Full speed retreaaat!

Fujimaru 2: Ollerus Boards, maximum thrust!

Fou: Fou, fooou! Fou off!

Koyanskaya: ...So, they got away. Well, I guess if nothing else, they passed that test of ability.

Koyanskaya: They're certainly experts at running away. First they knock the giants aside, then they make a getaway on magecraft skis? I can't say I was expecting that.

Koyanskaya: Admittedly, they're still well within sniping range...

Koyanskaya: ...but the smart money says to leave them alone for now. Especially since I've already got everything I came to this Lostbelt for.

Koyanskaya: Might as well let these humans fight it out among themselves, and I can just sit on the sidelines with a bag of popcorn.

Koyanskaya: Chaldeans, Crypters...Humans are humans, and being around them makes me sick.

Koyanskaya: I have no interest in either side...except for where it comes to you, Ophelia. Sort of.

Koyanskaya: It's such fun, watching you come to grips with your wish for destruction. You don't even realize you're harming others.

Koyanskaya: You think you're just a poor scapegoat,even as you blindly blunder about ruining everything.

Koyanskaya: Much as I don't care about them,I can't deny it's fun watching humans like that.

Koyanskaya: This Lostbelt's beauty is all built on thin ice, and your naivete's going to show just how fragile it is.

Section 9: Like the Spring Sunshine (Beginning)

Narration: When did things get like this? Whenever I see two birds flying around the sky,I think back to the Age of Gods.... To the long distant past.

Back then, the world was vividly real,and great gods oversaw everything. Yes, there were cruel competitions,and wars replete with tragic loss.

But it seems to me that the world back then was one of pride and dignity. Freyja offered blessings of love and fertility; Njörðr supported the seas and watched over the seafarers and fishermen of the world. ...Baldr gave us light and beauty,while Mímir gave us the sacred well.

Even during battles when, by all rights, lives should have been lost mercilessly, Odin and Thor were there to keep watch over the proceedings. Back then...I really do think we all loved one another. And not in the intense, feverish way that leads to people getting hurt.

I think it was more the gentle sort of love,like the spring sun warming your skin. At least, that's how it felt to me...

Which is why I don't understand...How did we end up drifting so far apart? How did we end up with such ugly,horrifying feelings within ourselves... ...feelings colder than the merciless ice,and hotter than a raging fire...


Ophelia: ...The targets fought off Koyanskaya's attack and made their escape.

Ophelia: It's still unclear which path they took once outside the castle, but knowing Your Majesty, I imagine you already know exactly where they are.

Ophelia: In addition, we found signs that the targets had come in contact with the imprisoned Divine Spirit amalgamation.

Ophelia: I'm only speculating here, but...

Ophelia: ...I believe the prisoner may have told them about the dangerous element sealed away in Mt. Hindarfjall No. 2.

Ophelia: Just tell us where they currently are, Your Majesty, and Saber and I will head out and recapture them.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...No, it's not important. Leave them be.

Scáthach-Skadi: I have already decided to love both the children of Chaldea, and the strange Archer with the unwieldy cannon.

Scáthach-Skadi: Do not force me to repeat myself yet again, Ophelia. I will not allow them to be killed.

Ophelia: But, Your Majesty...

Scáthach-Skadi: You are the one who empowered Sigurd's Spirit Origin, are you not? He is not capable of anything so delicate as capturing prisoners.

Scáthach-Skadi: He would much rather kill them. He will cut down anything in his way.

Scáthach-Skadi: The Celtic woman within me tells me with absolute certainty that that Servant cannot be easily used.

Scáthach-Skadi: He is himself like a demonic sword,inevitably bound to hurt its wielder.

Ophelia: I...

Scáthach-Skadi: I suggest you occasionally spend some time reflecting upon yourself, Ophelia Phamrsolone, daughter of humanity.

Scáthach-Skadi: While you are at it, give some thought to that girl,Mash, as well as the Archer.

Ophelia: ...Very well.

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: That Archer...Napoleon couldn't possibly have meant what he said. He's nothing more than a ghost, an empty shade of a human mocking me.

Ophelia: Obviously it was nothing more than a ploy to confuse me. Did he think I'd fall for something so absurd?

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: Still...I should have visited them in prison. I shouldn't have let that Archer deter me from that.

Ophelia: Now I don't know if I'll ever get to talk to Mash again...

Koyanskaya: Hiii! Koyanskaya here, reporting back from the front lines☆ There's nothing quite like losing my whole private army!

Koyanskaya: I'm afraid the contract with these giants I borrowed from Her Majesty is now null and void, since I kind of made a botch of that attack!

Koyanskaya: With all my dependable Jötunn gone,I guess this means I've finally had a major loss...

Koyanskaya: And yet, I seem to not be the only one down in the dumps here. What's the matter, Ophelia?

Koyanskaya: You're in the queen's good graces. You're one of the Crypters, and a part of their successful plot to completely upend the entire world. And what's more, you command an incredibly powerful Servant to boot.

Koyanskaya: So what could possibly be bothering you? What's on your mind?

Ophelia: None of your business. Didn't I tell you to stay out of my room?

Koyanskaya: Now, now, we girls have to stick together♡

Koyanskaya: This attitude right here is why Ms. Kyrielight doesn't want to be friends with you, you know!

Ophelia: !!! What would you know about–

Koyanskaya: More than you think, honey. Believe it or not,I'm actually veeery sensitive to human emotions.

Koyanskaya: On top of that, we're actually fairly similar. I know you like you're my own sister!

Ophelia: Huh...? ( what way!? )

Koyanskaya: Well, there's the fact that we both put our jobs first and foremost! We're both driven and meticulous, yet we become hopelessly devoted–perhaps to our detriment–when it comes to love!

Ophelia: Huh...? (What is she talking about? )

Koyanskaya: But enough joking. In all seriousness, you make me sick.

Koyanskaya: A real woman is supposed to be able to balance her work life and love life. But you...

Koyanskaya: You have feelings for Kirschtaria Wodime, but you just can't relax about it. You can't stop worrying.

Koyanskaya: You believe what you're doing is right,but you're still not comfortable with it.

Koyanskaya: You love him, but you can't fully commit to his cause. You cling to him even as you keep your distance.

Koyanskaya: Do you know why that is? I'll tell you: it's because you've never really had someone help you before.

Koyanskaya: You've not even had so much as a single friend in all your life. Isn't that right?

Ophelia: ...A friend?

Ophelia: A mage's life is devoted to her magecraft.

Ophelia: We don't need friends.

Ophelia: ...We don't.

Koyanskaya: Eee☆ That's so saaad! You cheeky little thing,pretending like you don't need others to survive!

Koyanskaya: (Siiigh) Kirschtaria is going to be so disappointed...

Koyanskaya: He may like to talk big, but deep down, everything he does is motivated by a deep love of humanity.

Koyanskaya: Even though he knows all too well that at their heart, humans are just wild animals instinctually driven to help, respect, and kill one another.

Ophelia: ...!

Koyanskaya: Listen, honey. As long as you have minds of your own, hopes and dreams aren't enough to keep humanity going.

Koyanskaya: You need to have a bit of sympathy and affection too, you know?

Koyanskaya: All the more so if you were never able to depend on family. Really, I'm surprised you didn't jump at the chance to marry that Archer who proposed.

Koyanskaya: Are you just incapable of swallowing your pride?

Koyanskaya: Or is it more that you're afraid to be honest with yourself about the fact that you've never really trusted anyone?

Ophelia: I...I'm not...

Koyanskaya: Oh, yes you are.

Koyanskaya: Right this moment, you're so scared you can barely stand it, aren't you? Even though this place is a never-ending Wednesday.

Ophelia: ...Stop it.

Koyanskaya: Poor little rich girl. Even though you'll never have to worry about the oh-so-terrifying Sunday here, you still can't shake your anxieties about it.

Koyanskaya: But you don't have to tremble in fear anymore, Ophelia.

Koyanskaya: Remember where you are right now. Go on, take a good look around.

Koyanskaya: This Lostbelt is a never-ending Wednesday. That's all there can be after Odin went and died.

Koyanskaya: There couldn't be any better world for you to live in, Ophelia Phamrsolone.

Ophelia: ...

Ophelia: ...Stop it. One more word, and I'll wipe you out of existence.

Ophelia: I don't care what you think you know about me. Keep talking about it, and I WILL kill you.

Ophelia: Leave. Right now.

Ophelia: If you're not gone by the time I get back,I'm sending my knight after you. Is that clear?

Koyanskaya: Oh my, how dreadful...Was it something I said? Well, they do say good fences make good neighbors...

Koyanskaya: Very well, I apologize, and I won't mention it again! On a different note: You're leaving already? Didn't you just get back?

Ophelia: ...I'm going to the terrace. I need some fresh air.

Koyanskaya: ...Hehe, that put some fire back in her eyes. Maybe I was overstepping my bounds a bit. What do you think?

Sigurd: Hmph.

Sigurd: I don't know what the point of you women talking to one another is, and I don't care.

Sigurd: Either you were giving her a pep talk, or you were trying to piss her off. Which one was it?

Koyanskaya: Which do you think it was?

Sigurd: What are you, stupid? Why would I be asking if I knew?

Sigurd: ...Well, no matter. It doesn't affect me one way or the other.

Sigurd: Play around all you like. But if you go too far, I'll kill you.

Koyanskaya: Ooh, I'm so scared. This is exactly your problem, Mr. Demonic Sword Knight. Or should I say, Your Majesty?

Koyanskaya: I know what I'm doing. I would never treat a valued customer with anything less than the utmost respect.

Koyanskaya: And since we also have the Tree of Emptiness and that unsightly queen to worry about...

Koyanskaya: ...I'm counting on Ophelia to help this Lostbelt's true nature shine through.


Mash: Another lovely day...It doesn't even look like we'll have to worry about a blizzard, Senpai.

Mash: At this pace, we should be able to reach our destination before sundown!

Fujimaru 1: It IS great weather today, isn't it?

Fujimaru 2: Time to get back to high-speed cross-country skiing.

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Mash: Good morning, Fou. Did you sleep well?

Fou: Fou!

Mash: I've finished packing up the Chaldea E-Z Camping Kit. We can get going whenever you want, Master.

Napoleon: What a great morning! It may be awfully chilly here, but at least the weather is always nice and calm!

Napoleon: I was a little worried we might have to shake off some pursuers, but luckily, we made it through the whole night without incident.

Mash: Thank you for standing guard all night, Napoleon. It really helped us catch our breath and rest awhile.

Napoleon: Mon plaisir, mademoiselle. The stars and the aurora made it real easy to pass the time. Besides, gotta use the right tool for the job. Since we Heroic Spirits don't need to sleep, I was obviously the best choice.

Napoleon: We don't need to eat either, of course...but we can still enjoy a good meal.

Napoleon: Gotta say, these rations you brought with you are impressive. I had no idea we'd come so far with how we made and preserved food.

Napoleon: If only my Grande Armée had had that kind of food...The best we could come up with was bottled goods, and trust me, those weren't much help in Russia.

Napoleon: I wish I'd been able to mass-produce canned goods, things might've turned out differently...

Fujimaru 1: You invented bottled goods, Napoleon?

Mash: Not exactly. Someone else came up with the idea,but it was Napoleon who inspired them to do so.

Mash: Since Napoleon's Grande Armée went on so many expeditions, it was essential they find some way to improve the quality of their rations.

Mash: So Napoleon–

Napoleon: Set up a contest with a prize of twelve thousand francs for whoever could come up with the best new kind of ration!

Napoleon: A confectioner by the name of Nicolas Appert succeeded brilliantly. He came up with the airtight container and the idea to sterilize them with heat!

Fujimaru 2: ...You offered twelve thousand francs to anyone who could make better rations, right?

Napoleon: You really know your stuff, Private! That's right. I held a contest to see who could come up with the best way to improve our rations!

Napoleon: A confectioner by the name of Nicolas Appert ended up winning. He came up with the airtight container and the idea to sterilize them with heat!

Napoleon: Of course, since we used glass bottles, they ended up breaking all the time, which was a real mess in more ways than one...

Fou: Fo fooou...

Mash: But, you did still pay Appert the full reward, right?

Napoleon: Of course! I'm nothing if not generous, you know! Besides, he had some really great ideas.

Napoleon: Canned goods and those things you call vacuum packs all originate from Appert's work with bottles.

Napoleon: That goes for Chaldea's rations, too.

Napoleon: Pretty impressive, when you think about it...

Napoleon: Anyway, now that we've had breakfast and our morning chitchat, shall we be on our way?

Mash: Yes! I'm ready whenever you two are!

Mash: ...I would have liked to report our current status to everyone on the Border before we left, but...

Fou: Fou, fooou. Fooou!

Mash: Yes, Fou. I know there's no point in asking for the impossible.

Mash: Even if Da Vinci has expanded her Mystic Code drones' comms range, given our current location...

Fujimaru 1: We're just too far away.

Fujimaru 2: No way could it reach all the way out here.

Mash: ...Right. At the moment,calling them just isn't feasible.

Napoleon: Guess we'll just have to find this other goddess first, then. On with the ultra high-speed cross-country ski tour!

Napoleon: I wonder if we'll have to scale a mountain before we can reach her.

Mash: ...Our destination is Mt. Galdhøpiggen,the tallest mountain in all of Scandinavia.

Mash: According to the data Illya sent me, this third goddess should be imprisoned in the mountain's peak.

Mash: On a map from Proper Human History, it would be located on the old Jötunheimen highlands, but–

Napoleon: But around here, it's at the very end of this endless string of snow and icy mountains. At least it's a straight shot there.

Mash: Right.

Mash: We're currently about two hundred and thirty kilometers away. If I can maintain my boosters' second gear, we should reach it in a few hours.

Napoleon: You have some awfully impressive equipment. And its magical energy efficiency isn't half bad, either.

Napoleon: Once we get this third goddess on our side, I'd love to have a word or two with whoever made it.

Napoleon: Especially since my skis are handmade...

Fou: Fou fo fo fo.

Napoleon: No, even I couldn't ask someone to carry me like you're getting done. No, really, I couldn't. I won't. I mean it.

Napoleon: Mademoiselle, make sure you hold on tight to Private Fujimaru! I'm gonna go ahead and pick up the pace!

Napoleon: With the strength and stamina of a Heroic Spirit, cruising at two hundred klicks per hour is a breeze!

Napoleon: Still, I can't really keep that speed up all the time,what with the obstacles that keep popping up.

Napoleon: Like, say, giants, or a pack of wild animals.... Case in point?

Mash: Y-yes, I see them. Master, I'm detecting several magical energy signals in our vicinity! They don't appear to be giants...

Napoleon: They're ice beasts. It'd take too long to go around them, and we don't want them calling their friends for help, so I say we take them out nice and quick!

Fujimaru 1: Let's do it! Keep it quiet, so the giants don't take notice!

Fujimaru 2: Once we wrap this up, let's keep on moving!

Napoleon: You got it!


Mash: We've destroyed all the ice beasts. The battle is over!

Napoleon: All right then, let's get our march back underway! We can even make a friendly race of it!

Mash: Um, I'm sorry, Napoleon, but I have to refuse. That would be far too dangerous!

Fou: Fou, fo fooou!

Napoleon: You're siding with the mademoiselle, pupper? Just be careful the wind doesn't blow you away.

Mash: Equipping the Ortinax Ollerus Board attachments now...Boosters, activated.

Mash: Switching from thruster mode's first gear to booster. Ollerus Boards, standing by. Three, two, one...

Mash: ...Ignition!


Napoleon: Whoa! I've never seen anything like that before...!

Napoleon: The whole palace is on fire!

Fou: Fooou, fou!

Mash: The whole building looks like it's made of ice,and there's a wall of fire surrounding it...

Mash: The fire here is just like the fire in the ice mountains; it's not melting anything around it...Like it is just suspended in the air and not burning anything at all...

Mash: A palace...of fire...

Fou: Fo, fou! Kyuuu!

Fujimaru 1: The air's so hot...!

Mash: Yes! We can feel the heat all the way over here!

Fujimaru 2: Don't go near it, Fou!

Fou: Fou, fou!

Napoleon: This fire is definitely made with magecraft. Nothing else could keep it burning without melting the ice palace.

Napoleon: Maybe there's a rune of burning inscribed somewhere? Or maybe the fire was brought here from a nearby mountain...

Napoleon: Whatever the case, it makes for a hell of a Bounded Field. I can feel it tingling on my skin all the way from here...

Napoleon: But, that only makes sense! Of course Mt. Galdhøpiggen, the highest summit in Scandinavia, would have a fiery fortress on top of it!

Napoleon: We are trying to bust out a goddess who could be the key to turning everything around here, after all!

Napoleon: It'll take more than a barrier of magecraft flame to turn this Heroic Spirit away!

Mash: Please be careful, Napoleon! I think this is the Palace of Fire!

Mash: Both in the poem “Sigrdrífumál” of Poetic Edda...

Mash: ...and the Völsunga Saga...

Mash: ...mention a palace on the top of Mt. Hindarfjall surrounded by a fiery hedge made from the shield of the gods!

Mash: It was called the Palace of Fire. It's a Bounded Field created by Odin himself!

Mash: This could be a large-scale ritual that uses magecraft taken from mythology, or perhaps a Bounded Field that's been in place since the Age of Gods!

Napoleon: Hmm?

Napoleon: Those flames, the shield of the gods? Nah. This Bounded Field hasn't been here since the Age of Gods.

Napoleon: At best, it's an imitation–a bit of fancy magecraft that just looks the part. Use those baby purples of yours, mademoiselle.

Napoleon: I know your senses are dulled from the magical energy in the snow and fire around here, but look closer.

Napoleon: There they are inside the fire, plain as day!

Fou: Fou, faauu! Kyaaau!

Mash: Now I see them...Those are Muspel giants,just like the ones at the castle!

Mash: I could tell they were stronger than the Jötnar or Bergrisar, but now...there's several of them...

Napoleon: They're walking around in that inferno like it's a cool day in autumn...

Napoleon: Damned impressive! I love tough sorts who're proud of it!

Napoleon: I don't see anything wrapped up like before, but given how their legs are in chains, I'm guessing they're here on guard duty?

Napoleon: ...Maybe the queen's just into that sort of thing. Or maybe...could it be Ophelia? Truly?

Napoleon: Whatever these guys have going on, it's in very poor taste, considering the old Jötunheimen highlands of myth weren't exactly the place to be for the likes of them!

Napoleon: If there's one thing these Muspel over there are lacking,it's charm! Don't you agree, fire giants!?

Napoleon: Haha! You're a spirited bunch, aren't you!

Fujimaru 1: (I wouldn't have guessed giants were such good sports...)

Fujimaru 2: We're not here to fight the fire giants, but we do need to get inside!

Mash: Right. We'll need to get through them if we're going to fulfill our objective!

Mash: Ortinax output is stable. Auto-maintenance function, activated. Amalgam Goad, standing by.

Napoleon: ...All right! Let's smash our way through these guys!


Napoleon: Nice work with that shield! It's even throwing the giants off-balance!

Napoleon: All right, I think that calls for another cannon blast! Taaaaaake THIS!

Mash: ...Target silenced! That takes care of the last Muspel.

Mash: Does that mean...the battle is over for now?

Napoleon: Nope, I'm afraid it's not gonna be that easy. There's still more of them, [♂ mes amis. /♀ mes amies. ]

Napoleon: It's still hard to make out magical energy here, but that's not the only unusual thing in the air. Can you smell it?

Mash: Oh, now that you mention it...I can faintly make out hydrogen sulfide...

Napoleon: That smell...Sulfur! That's the scent of a volcano!

Napoleon: Take another look at the flames, then at the palace.

Napoleon: Does it look like the flames have gone down in intensity at all? Have the palace doors opened up?

Fujimaru 1: The flames haven't died down at all!

Fujimaru 2: The doors haven't opened even a bit!

Mash: I can't find so much as a seam in that Bounded Field! Maybe this means we need to use magecraft to break through it?

Mash: Disabling such a powerful Bounded Field would be a problem for Senpai and me...

Mash: Neither of us is able to use powerful magecraft like that...

Napoleon: We need a Caster to help us! But with things as they are,we can't count on summoning one long-term.

Napoleon: Not to mention we still have those guards to contend with.

Mash: Here they come! More Muspel are emerging from the fire!

Napoleon: Ooh la la! There's even more of them now! This must be the rest of the pack!

Napoleon: The smart move here is to rush us all at once,fire giants! Don't bother coming one at a time!

Fou: Fo fou! Kyau!?

Napoleon: Hahaha, easy there, pupper! I'll pet you all you want once the battle's over, but right now you should stay back!

Fujimaru 1: What's that sound?

Fujimaru 2: Is something coming?

Napoleon: Up in the sky! It's huge!

Mash: Senpai, behind me! Get down!

Fou: Fo...Fou!

Mash: Senpai, look...What IS that...?

Mash: I'm not sure. It looks like...some sort of large, flying...

Mash: ...creature?

Napoleon: ...!


Napoleon: ...Damn, this thing's tough!

Napoleon: I still can't tell what the hell it is, but it looks to be about as hard as the Sphinx's face!

Napoleon: The fire giants certainly aren't helping, either!

Mash: It doesn't look like they're working together, though!

Mash: It looks like...they're both so focused on us they're not even seeing each other!

Napoleon: Yup. I'd say you're right about that. I must have really pissed this thing off!

Napoleon: I just wish I knew what I did to make it so angry. It doesn't look too bad at a glance...

Napoleon: Haha, I think it just laughed!

Napoleon: Nope, I still got nothing. Hmm...I don't suppose you two have any idea, do you?

Fujimaru 1: Afraid not!

Mash: This is the first time we've run into something like this as well!

Fujimaru 2: Well, it kind of looks like a living creature...I guess?

Mash: I agree, Master. It seems like it is, too...

Mash: It is exceptionally aggressive. If it were made from magecraft, I'd expect it to be more mechanical...

Mash: It could be a Phantasmal unique to this Lostbelt...

Mash: ...or it could be a Demonic Beast from a self-contained ecosystem that has never been mentioned in any myth or legend!

Fou: Fou. Kyaaau!

Mash: Huh? It's not...? Go on then, Fou, tell us everything you can!

Fou: Fo fo fou fo, fou!

Fujimaru 1: You know what it is, Fou!?

Fujimaru 2: What's he saying?

Mash: ......

Mash: ...I-I'm sorry, Senpai...

Mash: I can grasp the idea, but I can't exactly make sense of it as a language...

Mash: I've always admired Dr. Dolittle, but I'm afraid I just don't have that kind of talent...

Fujimaru 1: Don't worry. Hardly anybody can talk to animals!

Mash: It does happen occasionally...But no, you're right. Resuming combat mode!

Fujimaru 2: Okay then, back to the battle!

Mash: R-right! Understood!

Napoleon: We need to take the giants out first! Things'll get outta hand real fast if they gang up on us!

Napoleon: Three fire giants left! All right, let's do this thing! I'll fill 'em all up with holes!

Napoleon: One!

Napoleon: Two!

Napoleon: Three! Break 'em! Smash 'em! Make your way through!

Mash: We've destroyed all Musp–No, wait! The third one is still alive!

Napoleon: And here I thought I'd scored a direct hit...Aha, now I see! This one's a real fiery warrior!

Napoleon: It used its fallen comrade's body as a human–er, giant shield! Brave AND cold-blooded! I love it!

Fou: Fou, foooooou!

Napoleon: Whoa there...!

Mash: Khh...!

Mash: He's started hurling boulders–I mean, large blocks of ice! But don't worry. I can block them as long as I stay focused on defense!

Napoleon: Do it. It's time to take this guy down for good!

Napoleon: Hrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaah! Let's see how you like a barrage!

Mash: Consecutive impacts confirmed! Both the unidentified creature and last remaining Muspel have been–

Napoleon: Get outta here!

Mash: ...The unidentified creature has been sent flying directly into the palace...!

Mash: The fire wall shows no sign of going out, but the palace's outer wall has taken significant damage!

Napoleon: Sorry 'bout that! I tried to hold back, but the damn thing was so tough I ended up really going all out!

Napoleon: Ah crap, this is bad. I just knocked that thing into the palace. What if it ends up eating our sleeping beauty!?

Napoleon: Even if it doesn't, what if she ends up getting buried when the palace–

Mash: It's all right. I don't think there's any reason to worry.

Napoleon: Hm? How can you be so sure?

Mash: Just a feeling, but a strong one. If I'm right about this, then the one in the palace has to be–

Napoleon: ...!

Fou: Fou, fou! Fooou!

Napoleon: ...Whoa! That thing just got knocked back OUT of the palace!?

Fou: Fou...!

F:Purple Crystal Woman: ...Good morning, everyone.

F:Purple Crystal Woman: I am the daughter of Odin, and the eldest of the Valkyries. Once I was both a demigod and a goddess of old.

F:Purple Crystal Woman: In Proper Human History, my story and praises were sung in the Poetic Edda and the Völsunga Saga.

F:Purple Crystal Woman: I am an avenger who once loved Sigurd, only to end up taking his life followed by my own.

Purple Crystal Woman: ...I am Brynhild, a Heroic Spirit.

Section 10: Like the Spring Sunshine (Middle)

Thrúd: ...Our big sister from Proper Human History has awakened.

Thrúd: Sisters. Sisters.

Thrúd: Come, my sisters who all share memories with me. My true sisters who have lived since ancient times, who never depended on the queen's magical energy.

Thrúd: I seek your counsel. Though our minds are linked,I wish to hear your voices.

Hildr: Uh-huh. I get it.

Hildr: Our big sister's woken up. Shame. I'd hoped she'd just stay asleep forever.

Hildr: But now that she's awake,we need to do something about her.

Hildr: So, what should we do? ...You know, this could be a good opportunity.

Thrúd: ......

Thrúd: Yes. You might be right.

Ortlinde: ...This can't be happening.

Ortlinde: Our sister from Proper Human History should still be sleeping soundly in her safe haven...

Thrúd: Yes, but the fact is that she is awake now. Unfortunately.

Ortlinde: ...Then we'll need to go greet her.

Thrúd: Yes, there's no time to waste. Even if she is from Proper Human History, she is still our sister.

Thrúd: She was the first Valkyrie–the one closest to the gods. And so, she is the ultimate Valkyrie.

Thrúd: Though we may all be demigods, her Divine Core is much closer to that of a true goddess than ours.

Thrúd: We cannot afford for her to side with those humans.

Thrúd: ...

Hildr: Yeah, you're right. We've gotta go find her right now!

Ortlinde: We need to save her before it's too late...

Ortlinde: Having her remain with humans after she fell asleep in blissful ignorance would be cruel!

Thrúd: ...Right. We should go greet her, and soon.... Even if she doesn't wish to see us.

Thrúd: If Brynhild intends to side with the humans from Proper Human History over our Scandinavia...

Thrúd: ...we will need to show her how foolish that would be...

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Brynhild: Oh my. You are such an adorable little creature.

Mash: Fou certainly seems to like her. Does this mean...she's our ally?

Mash: Maybe she's a Heroic Spirit without a Master who happened to materialize in this Lostbelt, like Beowulf and Billy...

Mash: She doesn't seem to have the same magical energy signature as this Lostbelt, so I'm inclined to think she really is the Brynhild from Proper Human History.

Mash: I had a feeling that might be the case when I first saw that burning palace.

Mash: After all, a palace surrounded by fire appears in her legend.

Fujimaru 1: She is a Heroic Spirit from Norse mythology, after all.

Mash: Yes. She appeared in the Poetic Edda and the Völsunga Saga.

Mash: She was said to be one of Odin's loyal Valkyries, and Sigurd the Dragon Slayer's spouse.

Fujimaru 2: She was an ex-Valkyrie and Sigurd's spouse, right?

Mash: Yes. Exactly!

Brynhild: ...I am also the one who killed him.

Brynhild: That is why I am strong.

Brynhild: Shield-maiden Mash Kyrielight. Fujimaru.

Brynhild: I am prepared to devote myself body and soul to your journey to restore Proper Human History.

Brynhild: That I am here in this Lostbelt means there is someone with whom I must do battle...

Brynhild: The third goddess...

Brynhild: I feel that may be something of an exaggeration...

Brynhild: ...but even if it is, I am ready and willing to help you however I can, Fujimaru.

Fujimaru 1: Thank you.

Fujimaru 2: We'd be glad to have you, Brynhild.

Brynhild: On my name, I swear to you I will be of use.

Napoleon: ...Your eyes are the color of purple crystal. Gorgeous.

Napoleon: You certainly are the eldest of the Valkyries. So those jaw-dropping looks of yours are thanks to the old gods making you themselves, huh?

Napoleon: Thanks, old rulers of Scandinavia. Thanks for leaving such beauty in the world after you left.

Napoleon: Now that I've come face-to-face with that beauty myself,I'm helpless to do anything but drink it in!

Napoleon: I would love nothing more than to get to know you better, Brynhild...!

Fou: Fou...Fou.

Brynhild: I, um, I'm sorry...

Brynhild: Um...You are the Emperor of France, yes...?

Brynhild: That is not what I meant when I said I would devote myself body and soul...

Brynhild: ...I'm sorry.

Napoleon: Ooh la la, you're beautiful when you're flustered, too! Haha! Making beautiful women blush really is one of life's great pleasures for men, isn't it!

Napoleon: ...No, wait, that may have sounded really bad. Would you mind if I took that back, fair maiden?

Brynhild: ......

Mash: U-um, Napoleon, I'm sorry to interrupt your attempts at flirting, but...what about Ophelia?

Mash: Didn't you already propose to her...?

Brynhild: ...!

Napoleon: Ouch! You've got me there, mademoiselle! You're right, my heart does belong to Ophelia!

Napoleon: I may be a man of France,but I'm also a man of Corsica.

Napoleon: I think that may be why my Spirit Origin has these strange...quirks.

Mash: What do you mean by that?

Napoleon: Well, it seems that once I materialize, I can't help but look for a lover. No, seriously!

Napoleon: Still, it's just the one. It's not like I'm going around hitting on everything that moves.

Napoleon: And once I find my one true love...I can't help but profess love's virtues. It's a real burden, you know?

Fou: Fo fo fo fo.... Fou.

Napoleon: Oho! I'm glad to hear you understand, pupper!

Mash: ...Um...just one?

Napoleon: That's right. Napoleon the Heroic Spirit only professes his love to one person per materialization.

Mash: O-okay...But what about what you were just saying to Brynhild...?

Fujimaru 1: Took the words right out of my mouth.

Fujimaru 2: Yeah, what happened to “just the one” huh?

Napoleon: Whoa, whoa, hang on! I think you've got the wrong idea. That wasn't a profession of love! I was just being chivalrous!

Napoleon: Just because I've found my true love here doesn't mean I'm, um, immune to other women's charms! But that's still not the same thing as professing true love...

Napoleon: Look, I'm a passionate guy, and sometimes, I just can't help myself! Whatever I used to be like, that seems to at least be the case now!

Brynhild: ......

Fou: Fooou, fooou!

Napoleon: Haha, easy there, doggo! I'm not actually a dog person, you know.

Fujimaru 1: So you finally admitted it...

Fujimaru 2: Didn't you say you were okay with dogs before...?

Napoleon: Oh. Whoops. No, no, you've got me all wrong! It's not like I dislike them!

Napoleon: It's just pugs I have trouble with, ever since my beloved wife Joséphine's just bit me outta nowhere.

Napoleon: It took a real chunk out of me too! So I've never really gotten on well with dogs since then!

Brynhild: Oh my. I didn't know Your Imperial Majesty was married.

Brynhild: I see, I see. That's wonderful to hear.

Brynhild: What's say you have eyes for someone named Ophelia right now?

Fou: Fou fou, fou.

Brynhild: My, my. I see...A woman named Ophelia...

Brynhild: That won't do. No, that won't do at all.

Brynhild: Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte...You have tried to deceive, people in general, with love...

Brynhild: That won't do at all...

Napoleon: Ooh la la! I can't believe it! I was only half serious!

Napoleon: I never expected this beauty to turn her purple, crystalline gaze on me so seriously! Does this mean...

Napoleon: ...your answer is oui? That you accept the love I have to offer you!?

Napoleon: If so, it would be uncouth of me to refuse! Haha! Who cares if these two humans object!?

Mash: ...Ah.

Mash: Napoleon just tried to hug a pile of snow...and now he's facedown in it.

Fou: Fo fooou!

Fujimaru 1: What was that...?

Fujimaru 2: Was that some sort of illusion...?

Mash: ...It does seem to be the case.

Mash: It was magecraft intended to interfere with the target's sight.

Mash: As an Archer, Napoleon should be resistant to that sort of magecraft. Yet, it still worked...

Brynhild: My magecraft comes from Primordial Runes–power from the Age of Gods, bestowed upon me by Odin himself.

Mash: Primordial Runes...That's the same kind of power that Scáthach-Skadi wields...

Brynhild: That spell just now was far from the runes' full power. It was a tiny fraction at most.

Brynhild: Even so...not even a powerful Heroic Spirit can easily resist their effects.

Brynhild: Now, why don't we have the emperor cool down for a bit?

Brynhild: No doubt he was delirious from some terrible fever.

Mash: Oh, I know! That must have been what they call spring fever!

Brynhild: I'm afraid not. True romance is no mere fever. It does not stop until you burst into flame.

Brynhild: Besides...I really am sorry, but...

Brynhild: ...if a hero I'm sworn to love comes close to me...

Brynhild: ...I may just end up killing him.

Brynhild: I see...

Brynhild: Then Sigurd is here, as I suspected. Yes, that explains a great deal.

Brynhild: Very well. Now I understand what it is I must do.

Brynhild: When I first materialized in this Lostbelt, I wandered it aimlessly, without understanding why I was here...

Brynhild: As I went around defeating the giants who attacked me, I was sealed away by my sisters, as well as a woman calling herself a Crypter...

Brynhild: From then on, I remained asleep in the palace protected by a Bounded Field modeled after those created by my father, Odin, until you woke me...

Brynhild: ...Now, at last, I finally understand.

Brynhild: Fujimaru, I must apologize to you in advance.

Brynhild: Should I do battle with Sigurd, I hope you will forgive me if I embarrass myself.

Fou: Fou?

Brynhild: Ahh...When I see him...

Brynhild: ...I'm quite certain I won't be able to restrain myself.

Brynhild: I may even get so worked up that I can no longer speak,and my spear may grow larger too.

Brynhild: I will do my best to resist my urges...but the possibility remains that I may end up going into a rage like a Berserker.

Brynhild: So...

Fujimaru 1: Got it.

Fujimaru 2: I'll be careful if it ever comes to that.

Mash: Understood, Brynhild. It's great to have you on our side!

Brynhild: ...Thank you.

Brynhild: It's possible this Sigurd is not a Servant from Proper Human History.

Brynhild: He may not be the Sigurd I know, but someone else entirely with absolutely no knowledge of who I am.

Brynhild: But even if that is the case, I'm sure I...

Napoleon: I don't know if I agree with that,Mademoiselle Valkyrie.

Napoleon: Sitonai said he might not belong to this Lostbelt,and I'm inclined to agree.

Mash: Napoleon...

Mash: (He's still got snow on his head...)

Napoleon: This Lostbelt's been exactly the same ever since 1000 B. C.

Napoleon: It's a world basically designed by and for Scáthach-Skadi. A world where the entire human population has been locked down for nearly three thousand years.

Napoleon: No one here has any desires intense enough to create an evil dragon like Fafnir for Sigurd to slay.

Napoleon: What's more, there's no economy to stimulate desire. Hell, there's not even any concept of a nation-state.

Napoleon: So that tells us something!

Napoleon: Something about Sigurd besides whether he's from the Age of Gods or the A. D. era!

Napoleon: At the very least, we know that in this Lostbelt, Sigurd would never have been born. And even if he had, he could never have become a hero, as there could not have been an evil dragon for him to defeat!

Napoleon: ...There you have it.

Brynhild: ...So this is a world without heroes.

Napoleon: Except for you and me.

Fou: Fooou...

Napoleon: Haha, no need to get all mopey about it, pupper!

Napoleon: Even if there aren't any heroes in this world, Brynhild and I are still here. Not to mention your two human friends!

Napoleon: Along with you, doggo! And even that isn't all!

Napoleon: That Shadow Border thing of yours is around somewhere too, right? A band of humans and Heroic Spirits, all working together to restore humanity!

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, you're right!

Mash: Yes! They're all very dependable!

Fujimaru 2: We really do need to contact them again.

Mash: I agree, Senpai. Even if we can't rendezvous with them soon, we should at least update them on our situation!

Napoleon: It's been what, four, five days since we first met? It's probably about time you brought your shield and armor in for a tune-up, mademoiselle.

Napoleon: Since we've met up with the third goddess and all,now seems like a good time to head back.

Napoleon: You said they were located around southern Sweden, right?

Mash: That's right. The Border is parked in southern Sweden, near Norrköping.

Mash: I think we should be able to call them again if we return to the Lake Vänern area.

Napoleon: Hmm, that's near Village 23. All right then, for the moment, let's head back to southern Sweden!

Napoleon: Hey, Valkyrie lady! How are you at skiing?

Napoleon: Don't worry at all if you're just starting out.

Napoleon: I'd be more than happy to take you by the hand,hold your waist, and show you how it's done.

Brynhild: Hehe. You're rather amusing, Emperor Napoleon.

Brynhild: But, I can't. I mustn't. I'm sorry.

Brynhild: Please understand, it's extremely dangerous for a qualified hero to get too close to me.

Napoleon: Dangerous? Sounds thrilling! Don't worry, I'm perfectly delighted to risk my life for a beautiful woman.

Fou: Fou, faaau.

Mash: Napoleon...Does that mean, for Ophelia, you're also...

Napoleon: Of course!

Brynhild: Heh. Hehe. At any rate, you were talking about skiing?

Brynhild: No, I am not very skilled at it...but worry not. I am quite comfortable traversing snow.

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Brynhild: Oh, hello. Are you sure you want to ride on my shoulder? The wind will be rather strong.

Fou: Nnn, kyu. Fou fo.

Napoleon: I see you've got good taste in women, pupper! Haha! All right then, let's get our new Grande Armée underway!

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Fujimaru 2: New Grande Armée, moving out!

Mash: Right!


Napoleon: ...Okay, where are we right now?

Mash: The old Skagerrak strait...On a map from Proper Human History, this would be part of the sea.

Fou: Fou?

Mash: Oh, yes, Fou, this is the ocean. Or at least,it would be on a Proper Human History map.

Napoleon: But around here...

Napoleon:'s nothing but frost, snow, and mountains as far as the eye can see, just like most of this Lostbelt.

Mash: We've also passed lakes that are nothing more than snowfields now.

Napoleon: Guess that just means there's seawater and lakes underneath all this ice and snow–seawater, in this particular case.

Mash: It's uncharted territory for both me and Senpai.

Brynhild: This place is relatively warm...It was much chillier up around Jötunheimen.

Napoleon: Oh, yeah, good point.

Napoleon: Every bit of this Lostbelt is still covered with snow, but the area from Oslo up to Mt. Galdhøpiggen had a lot of icy mountains as well.

Napoleon: Now that you mention it, it was colder around there than it is here, but it still feels strange to call this area “warm” though...

Mash: That's true. The word “warm” seems to have lost all meaning here...

Napoleon: Haha, well said. Hmm...

Napoleon: All right, I've decided. While we're doing this,we might as well make a little pit stop!

Fujimaru 1: Pit stop?

Fujimaru 2: Does that mean you've been here before?

Napoleon: Something like that. Besides, I'd like to find out as much information as we can.

Napoleon: But, since it's getting close to sunset,why don't we take a break right around here?

B:Children: It's Napoly-on! The empy-man!

B:Children: Hey everyone! The empy-man's back!

A:Children: Who's that pretty lady with you? Is she your mate? Maybe she's an envoy! She's so beautiful!

A:Children: She's got armor! And a spear!

Napoleon: No, no, no, no, she's not my mate!

Napoleon: Then again, people in this Lostbelt don't have any concept of love or marriage, so I guess I understand the confusion...

Napoleon: Hey! Hey, kid! Leave her alone! Can't you see you're bothering her!?

Brynhild: Oh no, I don't mind. I quite like children.

Brynhild: It's lovely to meet you, little ones. Would you like to play with me?

Children: Yaaay!

Napoleon: ...You sure?

Brynhild: Of course. It's no trouble at all. Besides, don't you need to speak with the adults?

Napoleon: Yeah, that I do.... You're a real considerate lady, aren't you?

Mash: This place is...

Fujimaru 1: It looks exactly like Village 23.

Fujimaru 2: This isn't Village it?

Mash: Napoleon said this was Village 67...

Mash: But while the details are a bit different,the basic structure is exactly the same.

Mash: I'd say they're about eighty percent similar. I wonder if that was intentional...

Mash: All that aside, they've been so welcoming to us...

Mash: And just look how happy these children are...

B:Children: Hey, are you guys Mr. Napoly-on's friends?

Mash: Uh, yes. I suppose you could say that...

A:Children: Then here! This is for you!

A:Children: Mr. Napoly-on always plays with us when he visits,so we wanna thank his friends, too!

Mash: Th-thank you. These flowers are very pretty.

B:Children: We all grow them together. Sorry they're not the special kind we save for the ordained day!

Mash: Please, don't be. I'm very happy to have them.

Fou: Fou fooou!

B:Children: Whoa, what are you!? Wanna play tag!?

Fujimaru 1: ...

Fujimaru 2: Yeah...I know why we're doing this, but it's still hard.

Mash: Senpai...

Napoleon: Whoa, whoa, why the long faces, you two!? This is your first time here meeting these people!

Napoleon: Turn those frowns upside down! Traveling's meant to be fun!

Mash: N-Napoleon! Do you think you could stop smacking Senpai on the back so hard...?

Napoleon: Oh, sorry. Didn't think it was that hard.

Napoleon: Anyway, I asked around a bit, and it sounds like it's business as usual here.

Napoleon: Nobody's seen any envoys flying around on patrol,or heard anything about giants acting up.

Napoleon: Looks like we're safe for the moment.

Mash: In that case, we should be able to get a very good night's sleep.

Napoleon: Yup. Only thing is...

Napoleon: ...there's a Bounded Field here.

Mash: ...A Bounded Field?

Napoleon: It looks like a new one's been put up around the village's gate and surrounding walls.

Napoleon: Brynhild's the one who noticed it. Can't fool a Primordial Rune user.

Brynhild: ...With apologies for my presumptuousness...

Brynhild: ...Yes, I detected a Bounded Field besides the one Scáthach-Skadi put up to protect humans from giants and the cold.

Brynhild: It is a powerful field designed to defend against outside enemies, like a great shield or impenetrable fortress.

Brynhild: I can't make out the exact spell type, but I do know it is magecraft on a level fitting the Age of Gods.

Brynhild: If nothing else, I can tell you it is not based in runes. Which would mean–

Mash: The queen didn't make it...

Fujimaru 1: So, somebody made the Bounded Field here stronger?

Fujimaru 2: Then, who did...?

Mash: Yes. Who could have done that?

Mash: The only person who sided with the Lostbelt and uses nonrune magic is...Ophelia...

Mash: But, that can't be right.

Mash: Her specialty is summoning spells,not Bounded Fields.

Mash: Caenis didn't seem to possess a Spirit Origin that was particularly skilled at magecraft, either.

Mash: But then, if neither of them did it,then who could have possibly–

Fou: Fou fou! Fooou!

Mash: Oh. Welcome back, Fou.

Napoleon: Hmm...

Napoleon: Oh well, mulling it over's not gonna get us anywhere! Let's just take it easy here for the rest of the day, then pick things back up tomorr–

Goredolf: ...Aha! There you are!

Fou: Fou!

Mash: Director?

Goredolf: I knew I could do it if I tried! That didn't take long at all! Shadow Border here! I trust you can hear me!

Fujimaru 1: Director!?

Fujimaru 2: We got through again!

Goredolf: Hehe, don't be so surprised. It's a miraculous coincidence. I have no earthly idea how we got reconnected.

Goredolf: In this case, my abundant charm played no part whatsoever. Oh, and incidentally, it seems we will only stay connected for a few seconds more at best.

Napoleon: Whoa, who's the pudgy guy!? Is he that Goredolf you were telling me about?

Brynhild: ...

Brynhild: (I...can't tell if I should be wary of him or not...)

A:Meunière: Come on, old man, step on it! Tell them what we just found out! Hurry!

Goredolf: Oh, right! This is no time for formalities! Fujimaru, we have an emergency on our hands!

Goredolf: The old Lake Vänern! A group of giants is headed towards the village where Gerda lives even as we speak!

Goredolf: There's no way a bunch of children and young adults can fight them off! If the giants force their way inside, they'll kill the whole lot!

Mash: Oh no!

Napoleon: Village 23, huh...

Mash: Master!

Fou: Fo! Fou!

Goredolf: One of our Mystic Code drones only just picked it up! I don't know where you are right now, but you need to get there double time and rescue them!

Goredolf: That village may be useless to us as a source of new information now, but it could still easily serve as a base for our allies! You must protect it at all costs!

Fujimaru 1: What are we waiting for!?

Fujimaru 2: We need to go now! Fast!!!

Brynhild: Agreed. I cannot stand idly by as giants massacre children. That is not how a proper hero should fight.

Napoleon: Come on! The odds are against us making it there in time...but our Grande Armée is nothing if not fast!

Napoleon: Private Fujimaru is right! We move out at top speed, right now!


Mash: ...We made it to Village 23, Senpai!

Fujimaru 1: Where are the giants!?

Mash: I'm scanning for magical energy signals right now...!

Fujimaru 2: I didn't see any giants outside. Are they already inside!?

Mash: I'm afraid that's a definite possibility!

Mash: The outer walls and gate all appear to be intact, but we still can't see what's happening around the fields!

Mash: I don't like that we had to climb over the gate without permission...but this is an emergency!

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Napoleon: I'm a little worn out after all that high-speed cross-country skiing, but I'll worry about that later! Still...I don't sense any giants around here...

Brynhild: Let us hurry. We should start by going to the village center.

Napoleon: Right!

Napoleon: ...This is it! The center of the village!

Mash: I don't see any people out and about. Maybe they've holed up inside to stay safe...

Mash: ...or maybe we're already too late. But if we are...

Fujimaru 1: I don't see any signs of a giant attack anywhere.

Fujimaru 2: Plenty of these homes still have lights on.

Mash: Th-that's true. What's going on...

Gerda: Wh-who's there?

Gerda: I thought I heard voices...You shouldn't be out this late.

Gerda: Maybe I'm not really in a position to say anything after I went outside the village, but...

Mash: Gerda!

Gerda: That voice!

Gerda: Lady Mash! [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru! And that man from the ordained day!

Gerda: This is amazing...And you have another envoy with you today, too?

Gerda: Wait, if you're here, that must mean you stopped fighting with the other envoys! Oh, what a relief.

Gerda: I was so worried about you after that big fight you had!

Gerda: Hey...How did you get through the gate? It's so big and heavy that it takes several grown-ups to open...

Gerda: Oh, but we shouldn't be talking out here. We don't want to disturb anyone. Won't you come inside?

Gerda: I have some soup I can heat up if you'd like. I bet you're really cold after being out there all night!

Mash: Oh, uh, well...

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Fujimaru 2: Are we sure this village was attacked by giants...?

Napoleon: ...Hm?

Napoleon: Hang on. This magical energy is calm and gentle. It definitely doesn't belong to a rampaging giant.

Brynhild: Phew.

Brynhild: No one is hurt. That's all that matters.

Brynhild: But I do have to wonder...Why did that person from Chaldea tell us giants were attacking?

Mash: ...Gerda, do you mind if I ask you a question?

Gerda: I'm not sure I'll be able to answer it well,since I don't know very many things, but sure.

Mash: Did anything unusual happen in the village today, particularly from sunset until about now?

Gerda: Oh, yes! That, I do know about!

Gerda: Right before the sun set, a stranger came up to the gate from the outside!

Gerda: The grown-ups offered shelter from the cold,but the stranger just said...

Gerda: “No need for that. I'm not cold. ”

Gerda: But their clothes were all ragged, and their face was hidden, so we were worried.

Gerda: We invited them inside again, but they just clicked their tongue and said, “I'm from Chaldea. Don't worry about me. ”

Gerda: After that, the stranger said a blessing for everyone in the village and then just left.

Mash: Senpai...Did you hear that...?

Fujimaru 1: (Strengthened the Bounded Field without showing their face? )

Fujimaru 2: (This all sounds kind of familiar...)

Mash: Yes. I believe there was someone else who claimed to be from Chaldea in Russia as well...

Gerda: Oh, and Laura said she thought she heard really loud footsteps!

Gerda: We usually never hear loud footsteps except on the ordained day, so she wasn't sure if they belonged to giants or not...

Gerda: ...but she did say she thought she could hear them shortly before the stranger showed up.

Napoleon: ...I think I know what's going on!

Napoleon: Those giants probably were on their way to Village 23, but this stranger must have driven them away.

Napoleon: Which means...

Napoleon: ...we hurried all this way...for nothing...

Napoleon: ...I mean, it's great that no one was hurt, but...Hmm.

Fou: Fou, fo, fooou!

Mash: ...Thank you for the delicious soup, Gerda.

Mash: It really warmed me up.

Fujimaru 1: I feel so nice and toasty now.

Fujimaru 2: Thank you, Gerda.

Gerda: Hehe, I'm so glad you liked it. It's Village 23's traditional fish soup recipe.

Gerda: Okay, I'm going to clean up.

Gerda: Please stay here and relax, Lady Mash. You too, Fou.

Fou: Fou, fooou.

Mash: Oh, please don't worry about us, Gerda. Let me help you clean up.

Gerda: No, no, Lady Mash, you and [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru should relax. That's what guests are supposed to do.

Gerda: I remember hearing that in one of our legends. You know, it's amazing...

Gerda: I never thought I would actually get to entertain guests of my own someday!

Gerda: Hehehe. Please, enjoy your stay.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Mash: ...Senpai.

Fujimaru 2: That soup really was yummy.

Mash: Yes...It really was...

Napoleon: Oh good, you're both done eating. Perfect.

Napoleon: ...This place might not be in danger of running out of food, but they're not exactly enjoying a surplus.

Napoleon: Having them share what little they have with Heroic Spirits like us who don't need to eat, well...

Napoleon: ...I can't help but feel bad about that.

Mash: Don't worry, Napoleon. I explained that you and Brynhild had already eaten earlier.

Mash: So...

Brynhild: Right.

Brynhild: There is indeed a new Bounded Field around the outer walls and gate.

Brynhild: It's the same as the one around Village 67. It's a powerful Bounded Field, but it isn't made from runes.

Brynhild: Well, there is one thing that's slightly different...

Napoleon: It looks like the original Bounded Field had a small tear in it. Probably from our fight with the envoys.

Napoleon: I'm guessing that's what drew the giants here...So...basically...

Napoleon: ...someone else cleaned up the mess I made.

Napoleon: Not only that, they did a brilliant job repairing the tear. Not so much as an ant could get in now!

Brynhild: Well, there really are not any ants outside the village anyway...

Napoleon: Haha, good point.

Napoleon: How about you two? Any luck reaching the Border?

Mash: I'm afraid not. I've tried several times,but I couldn't get through.

Mash: Last time, the connection was shaky, but we managed. However now it seems impossible...Maybe it's the new Bounded Field?

Napoleon: That's possible. Definitely possible.

Napoleon: ...You all hear that!?

Mash: ...Gerda, we're stepping out for a little bit! We'll be right back!

A:Gerda: 'kaaay!

Brynhild: ...I can sense them. There appear to be several giants wandering around near the village.

Brynhild: Perhaps they still think there is a hole in the Bounded Field, and do not know it was reinforced.

Brynhild: They keep going around the same location in circles, over and over...

Brynhild: It's possible they may give up if we leave them be...but they may not.

Napoleon: Guess whoever fixed up the Bounded Field missed a few. Fine by me! We'll just have to clean up the cleanup!

Fujimaru 1: Let's go!

Fujimaru 2: We don't want to worry the villagers about this.

Napoleon: Right on! Then let's try to keep it quiet so we don't disturb their beauty sleep!

Brynhild: ...Understood.

Napoleon: Oops. I was just kidding, okay?

Brynhild: Yes. I am aware.

Napoleon: Man, you're beautiful.

Brynhild: Please stop.

Napoleon: Haha! Your cold demeanor makes it even better! All right, my new Grande Armée, onward to battle!


Mash: ...We made it back inside the village without incident.

Mash: ......

Mash: I know I brought this up earlier too, just doesn't feel right jumping over the gate.

Mash: It's a symbol of peace and protection for everyone in this village, after all...

Fou: Fofou, fo.

Napoleon: We Servants are strong enough that we could bust right through it, bolt and all, if we pushed hard enough...but that would no doubt be a lot worse.

Napoleon: Besides, you know...

Napoleon: It would be weird for us to just come up and knock in the middle of the night after we picked a fight with the envoys...

Napoleon: So if those are our choices,I don't have a problem sneaking in!

Napoleon: ...I'm sorry. I've been a bit cavalier about that sort of thing since my Grande Armée days.

Brynhild: That's quite enough, Napoleon.

Napoleon: Oh? Uh, right. Sorry.

Gerda: ...There you are!

Gerda: You were out for so long I started to worry. Are you all right? Are you cold?

Napoleon: Sorry to worry you. Everything's fine,we just went for a bit of a walk is all.

Gerda: A walk?

Fou: Fou, fou!

Gerda: Eee! Stop it, Fou! You're tickling me! Ahaha!

Gerda: ...Okay, settle down. I have to talk to Lady Mash.

Gerda: You see, I finally realized something.

Fou: Fou?

Gerda: ...Lady Mash?

Gerda: Between you, Mr. Napoleon, and the person who showed up outside the gate...I think I understand now.

Gerda: There are other people out there besides the envoys.

Gerda: Which means...

Gerda: and [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru aren't really envoys after all, are you?

Mash: ...I...

Napoleon: ...

Brynhild: ......

Gerda: I'm sorry. I've been wrong this whole time.

Gerda: But even if you aren't envoys,I still think you're great, Lady Mash!

Gerda: Things were so crazy during the ordained day that I never got to say that before...

Gerda: So I'm really glad you came back,and that I got a chance to tell you!

Gerda: ...Hehe. I feel so much better now!

Gerda: Thank you for coming to see me again, Lady Mash!

Mash: ...You're welcome.

Section 11: Like the Spring Sunshine (End)

Da Vinci: Ahem, testing, testing. Can you hear me? I think these adjustments should help us stay connected.

Mash: Yes, it worked! We can hear you fine, Da Vinci!

Da Vinci: Bene, bene! We can hear you loud and clear, too! Now, we've got an emergency on our hands, so I'll be quick!

Fujimaru 1: An emergency!?

Fujimaru 2: Wh-what's happening!?

Napoleon: Morning! So you're the ones making all this racket so early!

Napoleon: Well now, you're a cute one! If only you were about ten years older...

Da Vinci: Oh, are you the new guy? My, what an overbearing Spirit Origin you have...

Da Vinci: Never mind that. We really do have an emergency on our hands!

Da Vinci: The Shadow Border's currently under attack. We're being chased by a bunch of flying humanoids!

Mash: That sounds like envoys...Mass-produced Valkyries...!

Da Vinci: Aha, I THOUGHT that might be the case! Since we're in Norse lands and all, the Valkyries were the first thing to–Did you say “mass-produced”!?

Da Vinci: Ooh, I like the sound of that! I'd love to have my own squad of mini Borders at the–Er, never mind that!

Da Vinci: We just got the Border's controls back up and running this morning. So of course, the first thing our fearless leader here decides to do is take the Border outside my Bounded Field.

Goredolf: D-don't you blame me for this! I was just trying to find a spot with a better signal!

Goredolf: Besides, how could I know a little drive would give our position away!? You could have camouflaged us once we were mobile!

Da Vinci: Anyway, that is why we've been able to call you again,so it isn't all bad news. So–

Goredolf: Gah! Driving on these snow plains is terrible! It's like one big sheet of ice!

Mash: Director!

Fou: Fo fou!

Fujimaru 1: Are you under attack right now!?

Da Vinci: Yep! We're pretty much at our limit here!

Meunière: I'll send you our current coordinates now! I don't wanna rush you, but if you can get here soon, we'd reeeally appreciate it!

Fujimaru 2: Where are you right now!?

Da Vinci: At the moment...we're about fifty kilometers west of Norrköping!

Meunière: Here are our coordinates!

Mash: We just lost our connection...Master!

Fujimaru 1: We need to go right now!

Fujimaru 2: Mash, suit up!

Mash: Got it!

Gerda: Is something wrong? Breakfast is almost ready...

Gerda: Lady Mash, [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru...What's the matter? Did you catch a cold?

Napoleon: Well now...

Fou: Fou, fo fo fou!

Brynhild: No, we're fine. But I'm afraid we have some urgent business to attend to outside the village. I'm sorry, Gerda.

Brynhild: We'll be glad to have breakfast once we get back. Won't we, Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: You bet!

Fujimaru 2: Don't worry, we'll be right back.

Gerda: I see...

Gerda: Okay, see you later then!

Gerda: Please be careful! Promise me you'll come back safe!

Mash: Engaging the Ollerus Boards' second gear...

Mash: Our speed is holding steady. We may have lost contact again, but I have a good idea where the Border is right now.

Mash: It should be about twenty kilometers away from our location!

Napoleon: If we keep accelerating,we should be there in no time! Although...

Brynhild: Yes. There are several giants roaming about up ahead. We could go around them, but–

Napoleon: We don't have time! We'll have to go through them!

Napoleon: We don't need to kill them all! Once we've cleared a path, we can get moving again!

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Fujimaru 2: Slow down for a bit, Mash!

Mash: Yes, Master!

Mash: Reducing Ollerus Boards' speed...and stopped.

Fou: Fou fou! Kyaaau!

Napoleon: Ooh la la, here they come! Let's do this!


Napoleon: Good! We've opened a hole in their ranks! Let's blast through and keep on moving!

B:Mash: Re-equipping the Ortinax Ollerus Board attachments now. Hold on tight, Master!

Mash: Switching from thruster mode's second gear to emergency gear. Ollerus Boards, standing by. Three, two, one...

Mash: Reignition!

Napoleon: I can barely see a thing! Still, we should be able to spot what we're looking for!

Napoleon: You two! That big chunk of armor plating up ahead...that must be it!

Napoleon: Magnifique! It's not so much a vehicle as it is a wondrous armored transport!

Da Vinci: We've got a visual on all of you too! Awesome job getting here so quickly! But we can't slow down yet!

Da Vinci: Those Valkyries are chasing us with their spears even as we speak!

Brynhild: Then we shall jump on board.

Napoleon: Great idea!

Mash: Wha–

Napoleon: Don't move, you two! I'll help you up! ...Hraaaaaah!

Napoleon: ...And he sticks the landing!

Napoleon: Damn, it's windy up here! Make sure you two don't fall off!

Mash: R-right. Master, stay behind me. I'll do my best to block the wind!

Mash: You too, Fou!

Fou: Fou, fooou!!!

Mash: ...I see them. They're impossible to miss. There's a huge throng of mass-produced Valkyries right above us!

Brynhild: Mass-produced...

Brynhild: Yes, you did mention them. I...knew about them...

Brynhild: I thought I understood...But seeing them here,like this, I can't help but feel an ache in my heart.

Brynhild: So these are my soulless sisters...Valkyries made to be automata and nothing more.

Brynhild: ...They are fully equipped with systems and functionality that allow them to carry out their orders. In fact, that's ALL they have.

Brynhild: They do not have the uncertainty that comes with even the limited emotions we Valkyries were given.

Brynhild: They may be highly functional and efficient...

Brynhild: ...but I cannot see them as anything but tragic.

Brynhild: Can you hear me, my sisters? My poor, soulless sisters?

Brynhild: My True Name is Brynhild. I am the eldest of you. I am the one upon whom you were most likely based.

Brynhild: I am asking you all to stand down. No matter what the circumstances of your births...

Brynhild: ...I have no wish to do any of you harm. Please, leave.

Envoys: ...Sister.

Envoys: Sister. Sister Brynhild. Sister. The elite commander who stands above us all. So she really does exist...

Envoys: Inexplicable. Inexplicable. We were only ordered to destroy this impure slab of metal...

Envoys: Inexplicable. Inexplicable. Commander units, we request additional orders regarding this situation.

Envoys: Sister. Sister Brynhild...means to fight us!

Envoys: Ridiculous. Impossible. Ridiculous. Impossible. Impossible. Impossible!

Brynhild: It is not impossible at all, my young sisters.

Brynhild: So please, leave now. If you refuse...

Brynhild: ...I will have no choice but to destroy you!


Brynhild: ...Now do you see the difference in our power?

Brynhild: Know the grief of one of your sisters' destruction. Any further loss would be meaningless.

Brynhild: I am sure another will be manufactured,but that is not the same as returning from death.

Brynhild: It only means a new one will have been created in her place. Individually, your lives are so very finite.

Brynhild: Now leave, my sisters. Please, don't make me destroy any more of you.

Thrúd: ...I'm sorry, Sister. But we cannot leave.

Brynhild: That voice...I've heard it before...

Thrúd: You mentioned a difference in power? True, these mass-produced units are no match for you individually.

Thrúd: But we do have numbers on our side! I wonder...

Thrúd: How long can you last against a hundred mass-produced Valkyries, Sister!? How about you, Chaldean dregs!?

Da Vinci: Oh, you bet we'll hang in there! We haven't even gotten started!

Da Vinci: Especially now that you guys have bought us enough time to regroup...!

Mash: The emergency brake! Hold on, Master!

Fou: Fo fo fou! Kyaaau!

Napoleon: Hahaha! Nice, very nice! Looks like your Shadow Border is back in action!

Napoleon: How deviously clever of you. Not bad at all!

Fujimaru 1: So you weren't just randomly zipping around?

Fujimaru 2: Your escape path was planned!?

Napoleon: You got it, [♂ monsieur /♀ mademoiselle]! You'll see what your friends were up to very soon!

Mash: Giants! Those are from the group we broke through earlier...!

Da Vinci: I haven't just been fixing the Border up all this time! I also figured the giants out!

Da Vinci: They're basically biological heat-seeking missiles. If something's warm, they go after it! Humans, animals, Heroic Spirits...They'll go after any of them!

Da Vinci: Including the Valkyries, too. They've got artificial hearts, and their bodies are just as warm as a human's!

Da Vinci: Which meeeans...

Fou: Fo...Fo, fooou!?

Mash: The giants are throwing massive chunks of ice at them! Incoming! Moving to defend!

Meunière: Haha, look at 'em drop! I guess even Valkyries don't like getting smacked by giant ice blocks!

Meunière: Woohoo, our strategy worked! Serves them right,after all the times they tried to snipe us!

Goredolf: Heh. There was nothing to it.

Goredolf: My handpicked technical advisor's calculations merely happened to be excellent.

Goredolf: Keep it up! Make the giants do the dirty work for us! It's in their nature!

Goredolf: Why have a fair fight with a hundred Valkyries! We're travelers, not fighters!

Da Vinci: All this ruckus ought to draw more giants' attention. So while we make a clean getaway–

Napoleon: Look for their commander! I know Thrúd is here; I heard her voice.

Napoleon: Makes sense. They wouldn't bring a hundred of them all this way without someone to control them!

Napoleon: She's got to be up there somewhere! If we can find her, and take her out...

Napoleon: ...victory will be ours!


Goredolf: Gah, that was a direct hit! Dammit, man, I thought I told you to drift like you're taking an S curve!

Meunière: How'm I supposed to do that on all this snow!? Are you trying to roll the Border over!?

Goredolf: Dammit, I knew I should have put on the snow chains...! What were you thinking, Goredolf!?

Goredolf: What's the latest on the Valkyries!? How many of them are left!?

Meunière: Looks to be about seventy! Wait, didn't you just say not to engage them!?

Goredolf: That doesn't mean I'm not worried! H-hmm, this is bad. The Border's armor can't take much more of this!

Da Vinci: Our multilayered Bounded Fields can handle falling rocks, but the ice boulders the giants are throwing are another story thanks to all the Mystics in them!

Da Vinci: I have to agree. The sooner we wrap this up, the better!

Napoleon: Well, what's the word, beautiful Valkyrie? Have you found your sister yet?

Brynhild: ......

Brynhild: ...Almost.

Mash: I'll keep you safe, Brynhild! Don't worry about anything except your search!

Brynhild: Thank you, young shield-maiden. Your determination is wonderful to behold.

Brynhild: Though I hesitate to call it daring,your resolve shines bright nonetheless.

Brynhild: It reminds me of nothing so much as the night sky, glittering with stars.

Brynhild: Perhaps that is why I am free to cast my gaze far and wide.

Brynhild: ...There she is.

Napoleon: Is it Thrúd!?

Brynhild: No, she is not alone. It is all three of them.

Brynhild: I can tell you their names as well. Thrúd, Hildr, and Ortlinde...

Brynhild: ......

Brynhild: It seems my beloved younger sisters have survived in this Lostbelt for a long, long time.

Napoleon: That's right. These sisters managed to survive Ragnarök, and have been living in this world devoid of deities since the Age of Gods.

Napoleon: They're the originals. The commanders. Scáthach-Skadi's aides-de-camp.

Napoleon: They were the models for all the other replica Valkyries, and they're the ones who lead them.

Brynhild: ...

Brynhild: Thrúd, Hildr, Ortlinde! Can you hear me, sisters?

Brynhild: Come down here at once.

Brynhild: I am willing to cast my spear at you from a distance if I must, but I would rather fight face-to-face.

Brynhild: Is that not true for you, Thrúd? Hildr? Ortlinde?

Brynhild: ...Do you not wish to see my face?


...Why, Sister? Why do you side with the humans?

Fou: Fou...!

Mash: There's been a change in the Valkyries' behavior...Over half of them have begun attacking the giants!

Mash: There are only a few left in the sky now...

Mash: No, wait! They're coming down here!

Brynhild: Thrúd...

Brynhild: Hildr...

Brynhild: Ortlinde...

Brynhild: It's been ages for me since I last saw your faces. What about for you?

Brynhild: On that day...

Brynhild: were so preoccupied with sealing me away that you couldn't even talk to me.

Thrúd: ...That's right.

Thrúd: As far as we are concerned, you are not our sister.

Thrúd: You are from Proper Human History. You didn't experience the last Ragnarök–the last broken Ragnarök and its scorching flames...

Mash: (Broken...Ragnarök...? )

Thrúd: Once he was freed, Loki was supposed to have put a plot into motion that would pit the gods and giants against each other...

Thrúd: Once they were all gone, the earth would belong to the humans. That was how Ragnarök was supposed to happen.

Hildr: But it didn't. The gods and giants didn't die in the ordained order. That led to fate itself changing.

Hildr: Ragnarök took a different path than the prophecy laid out,and the world has been mad ever since.

Ortlinde: ...So when we first saw you, we were overjoyed.

Ortlinde: You were our sister from Proper Human History,from a world without the madness of our Ragnarök.

Ortlinde: We would join us...

Brynhild: No, my sisters from another sky. That will never happen.

Brynhild: I am a Heroic Spirit of humanity. I manifested here only to restore it.

Brynhild: I would be very happy to speak with you and share our thoughts and feelings on this matter.

Brynhild: But...I can never join your side.

Thrúd: And that...

Thrúd: That's why we put you to sleep! As long as you were asleep, we wouldn't have to fight!

Ortlinde: That's right. If only you'd stayed asleep,we could have avoided all this...

Hildr: We never wanted to fight you!

Hildr: Your face, your voice...everything about you is just like our sister from this Lostbelt.

Hildr: Is that not the case for you too!? Do you consider us strangers who merely look like your sisters!?

Hildr: Is that why you have no problem killing us!?

Brynhild: ...!

Fujimaru 1: ...

Napoleon: Wait. You don't have to say anything more, Valkyrie.

Napoleon: In fact, don't. Don't say another word. I'll take it from here.

Thrúd: Move aside, Heroic Spirit! You know nothing of what we've felt all these thousands of years!

Thrúd: You have no idea what it feels like to see the sister we once thought dead after all this time...! To have an eons-long dream come true!

Napoleon: ...Gotcha. Hearing you talk about minds and souls and whatnot, it sounds like you've got feelings to spare.

Napoleon: So in that case, you ought to be able to understand what I'm about to say.

Napoleon: You say she doesn't have a problem killing you?

Napoleon: Of course she does!

Napoleon: She doesn't want to kill anyone!

Thrúd: ...!

Napoleon: Look, there are exceptions to every rule. I wouldn't hesitate to kill any scumbag I came across...

Napoleon: ...but that doesn't mean I don't carry the burden of that death with me. That's not how it works.

Napoleon: Don't you get it, mademoiselles? This isn't the kind of thing you're supposed to put into words.

Napoleon: We shoulder the responsibility of every life we take. For everything we take...

Napoleon: My Grande Armée was no different. In the end, they paid the price for every murder, every pillage.

Napoleon: That's how we warriors carry on. We don't stop until we collapse, buried under that weight.

Brynhild: Yes. That is exactly how a a hero,should conduct herself.

Brynhild: But I see that after all these years in this Lostbelt,devoid of heroes as it is, you have forgotten that.

Brynhild: One cannot be a true hero without battle, for it is there that one risks her life as a final resort.

Brynhild: If you have forgotten that...

Brynhild: are not fit to even call yourselves Valkyries, for you are no longer capable of guiding the souls of brave heroes.

Thrúd: ...!

Thrúd: We ARE the Valkyries! We have defended this Lostbelt and the humans who live in it for thousands of years!

Hildr: We're the last Valkyries left! How dare you...!

Ortlinde: ...This is how we have lived our lives. You may be our sister, but you have no right to say that to us.

Thrúd: ...Come on! We will prove to you that we're true Valkyries, using these pseudo-Gungnirs that Odin himself bestowed upon us!


Thrúd: Khh!

Hildr: Sister Brynhild, how can there be so much difference between our–

Ortlinde: Performance? Output? Equipment? No, it can't just be that. There's something else going on...

Brynhild: You fight well, sisters–better, even,than your specifications should allow.

Brynhild: But one of the things I gained in meeting Sigurd was a human heart.

Brynhild: It is something uncontrollable, something wholly different from our natural state. At times, the feelings it inspires can drive one to madness.

Brynhild: Drastic mood swings. Wavering. Faulty functionality. Excessive heat.

Brynhild: ...Now that you three have been alive for so long,I see you all have human hearts as well.

Brynhild: You all have intense emotions, and your spearmanship reflects it. I'm so glad to see that.

Thrúd: What...?

Hildr: Huh...?

Brynhild: Love. Hate. Joy. Grief. They all flicker like flames in the wind.

Brynhild: Sometimes they shrink to embers. But other times,they explode into all-consuming blazes.

Brynhild: But even the tiniest embers show that there is something lurking within your circuits–

Thrúd: Th-that's not true!

Thrúd: Don't be ridiculous, Sister. We are autonomous machines.

Thrúd: We may now belong to the queen rather than Odin,but that doesn't mean we've gained emotions...

Hildr: You're wrong...! We don't have emotions! Do you take us for human!?

Hildr: We would never allow something so unstable within ourselves!

Ortlinde: ......

Brynhild: ...

Thrúd: Oh, Sister...Our sister from Proper Human History! Why did it come to this...!?

Thrúd: First you preach at us, then you tell us we're not even Valkyries!

Thrúd: I knew it, you have gone mad! Your mixed feelings for Sigurd have tainted and twisted you!

Thrúd: Once you were our proud, unwavering, fearless sister...You gathered the souls of fallen heroes tirelessly...No more! Your affections have corrupted your mind!

Ortlinde: Thrúd! Your magical energy is leaking...You need to calm down!

Hildr: This can't stand...! It can't, it can't, it can't!

Hildr: How dare you!?

Both Valkyries: Siiiiiister! Aaaaaaaaah!


Narration: ...We loved our sister. Whenever I see two birds flying up in the sky,I think back to the long distant past.

We loved everything about everyone,though not in some manic, feverish sense. It was a kinder, gentler love,like the spring sun warming your skin. At least, that's how it felt to me. And yet...

You threw yourself headfirst into frightfully hot emotions, into feelings so powerful they could and did change you. You turned from what a Valkyrie was meant to be.

Sister. Oh, Sister. Even here, in our Lostbelt... followed your heart...straight to your death.

After falling for a human, you gave yourself over to love...only to be betrayed and despised. And soon died...

You lived for love, were betrayed by love,and died for love. We were scared. We were terrified. The way you died was terrible,but so beautiful...

It was unbefitting of a Valkyrie,without valuing heroes' souls over all else. Your new heart shone so bright we couldn't help but fear it even as we were drawn to it.

But, then again...

Yes, Father. You're right. ...We've been broken for a long, long time.... We already had our own.

Yes, Sister. We already know what it's like to have human hearts. We know what it is to have feelings so intense they burn you up inside, like...

We don't know what romance is;we know nothing of love. So then, what is this fire inside us that continues to burn unabated!?

...Ahh, Brynhild–Sigrdrífa!

I can't help but wish you would call my name...our names...with those icy cold lips. Even as I bury these awful,hideous thoughts deep within my heart... This feeling...colder than the merciless ice,and hotter than raging fires... This is neither love, nor romance.

...This is what humans call “envy. ”


An enormous spear has pierced us both. The first of us, Thrúd, did not move to avoid Brynhild's final attack. The second of us, Hildr, ran towards Thrúd without a second thought, choosing to be impaled alongside her. The third of us, Ortlinde...saw her two sisters impaled before her very eyes.

Ortlinde: Thrúd! Hildr...!

Ortlinde: Wh-why...It's're both...This can't be right...

Thrúd: Like a human heart...

Thrúd: We're not like you...We're not...

Thrúd: This fire that burns inside us...

Thrúd: so very, very ugly...

Thrúd: We could never be like you...Sister...

Thrúd: Still...Hehe...I should have known...

Thrúd: Even if you are from Proper Human History, you're still our sister...You saw right though us, as you always did...

Thrúd: Even back when you played with us in our childhood...

Thrúd: ...all we could manage was to follow you, poorly...

Hildr: ...Yeah. You finally said it, Thrúd.

Hildr: I feel the same way, of course. I...This is so sad...

Hildr: I thought we could hold our own at least a little better...but I guess this is our limit.

Hildr: We can't beat you, Sister. Even if our performance, output, and equipment surpass yours...

Hildr: ...there's no way we could ever kill you.

Hildr: Even so...I'd say we did pretty well...

Thrúd: I think so, too...

Hildr: Let's go out together, Thrúd.

Thrúd: Yes, of course. I would be happy to go with you.

Thrúd: Ortlinde...I'm so sorry for dragging you into our self-destruction.

Thrúd: But...once Sister awoke, this was inevitable...

Thrúd: I'm sorry...I can't bring you along.

Thrúd: I're shocked by this,because you're not as broken as we are.

Thrúd: That's why this heart...this envy...this ours alone.

Hildr: I'm sorry, Ortlinde...our beloved little sister.

Hildr: We want you to follow your own heart as well, Ortlinde. I'm sure you have one, too...

Hildr: So follow it, wherever it takes you...

Mash: ...The two Valkyrie commanders have disappeared.

Fou: Fooou...

Napoleon: ......

Ortlinde: This can't be...Thrúd? Hildr?

Ortlinde: Ah...Ah......Sister...Brynhild...

Ortlinde: Why did...I-I don't...understand...

Ortlinde: ...I don't understand! Wh-why did they...

Ortlinde: ...It was like...they chose to...!

Brynhild: Ortlinde.

Narration: I can hear Sister's words ringing out. The Shadow Border has already stopped moving. The frenzied giants are far away, and our throngs of Valkyries that once filled the skies... ...are now nowhere to be seen.

The only one left now is the third of us, Ortlinde. And...

“I don't understand. ”v “I just don't understand. How did it come to this...”

As she spoke those words, Ortlinde took flight,leaving her sister behind. She vanished somewhere among the clouds, never once looking back at her sister still on the ground.

Section 12: You, Who Was Like the Spring Sunshine

Peperoncino: Are you getting enough sleep, honey?

Peperoncino: You'll be in no position to lecture Kadoc if you aren't taking good care of yourself, you know.

Peperoncino: I always knew you were diligent and efficient, but I didn't have you figured for the sort to keep things bottled up.

Peperoncino: Be honest: Have you looked in a mirror lately?

Peperoncino: You might not have any bags under your eyes, and you look healthy enough, but you seem completely listless.

Peperoncino: Anything on your mind, honey? I'm here to listen if you need to vent for a bit.

Ophelia: ...

Ophelia: (Pepe still doesn't know about Russia. )

Ophelia: (I don't think there's any way I'd be able to hide it from him if I started talking...)

Ophelia: I'm fine. No need to worry about me. I don't have time to talk right now, in any case.

Ophelia: But, thanks anyway, Pepe. It was nice of you to call me.

Peperoncino: Oh don't you worry, honey. I was the one missing you, you know. It's nothing but stuffy men around here, so you are just a breath of fresh air!

Peperoncino: I really should say though that your “perfect knight” is a little bit of a disappointment. He's obviously not doing your mental health any favors.

Ophelia: Yes...I suppose that's true...

Ophelia: (He IS why I've been so worried, but–)

Peperoncino: How're things with your Lostbelt king? I hear she's nice, as those sorts go.

Ophelia: Yes, she is. Queen Scáthach-Skadi protects the people left in Scandinavia in her own godly way.

Ophelia: But, it is the way of one who is absolute in all things. She talks of love, but her version of it is so...great that I can't even fathom it.

Peperoncino: Hm. I see. And Koyanskaya isn't exactly dependable when it comes to these sorts of things...

Peperoncino: Okay, then. I need to say this. I know I might be the last person you want to hear this from...

Peperoncino: ...but your Lostbelt's tree is impressive. I mean, it's already spitting out seeds.

Ophelia: Only because this Lostbelt's soil happened to be rich. I can't take any credit. Besides...they all withered away.

Ophelia: If I'd only managed to keep a tiny sample, then I could have had something to report to Lord Kirschtaria...

Peperoncino: Now, now, no more pouting. Chin up, honey. The fact that you got any seeds at all proves that your tree is growing well!

Peperoncino: And that means you have a great relationship with your Lostbelt's king. You're doing great, Ophelia.

Ophelia: ...Thank you.

Peperoncino: This is separate from our whole Crypter deal, but I'm going to give you some advice: go easy on yourself.

Ophelia: Huh?

Peperoncino: I don't mean as a mage. I mean as a woman.

Peperoncino: You may not like wearing makeup,but a little foundation wouldn't kill you.

Peperoncino: Your skin might be smooth and blemish-free now, but do you really think that'll last with all the stress you've been putting yourself under?

Peperoncino: You've got a lovely face, honey. Don't hide it by always staring at the ground.

Peperoncino: Besides, don't you want to look your best for Wodime?

Ophelia: ...Yes, I do. I can't put anything past you, can I?

Peperoncino: I just call it like I see it. Hehe, I still have a long way to go myself!

Peperoncino: I really have no business intruding so much on your secrets, however much I just love it.

Peperoncino: Anyway, I'd better go. Besides, I'm worried about our dear Kadoc.

Peperoncino: It'd be nice if I could get in touch with Russia,but he just refuses to answer my calls...

Peperoncino: ...Oh well. If we can't get in touch with him now that Chaldea's showed up there, I guess that's kind of an answer on its own...

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: So, Brynhild has finally awakened...

Ophelia: So much for all that work to keep her a secret.

Ophelia: ...You again.

Ophelia: What do you want? Are you here to scold me? Are you saying I should've killed her when I had the chance?

Ophelia: I tried. Believe me, I really tried.

Ophelia: But...

Narration: I just couldn't do it. I knew she died once,when her love went unrequited.

Narration: That's why...I just couldn't bring myself to kill her.

Narration: It's not because I saw myself in her...

Narration: I'm not so narcissistic as to compare myself to a legendary Valkyrie.

Narration: I just thought...I could never do what she did.

Narration: I flinched, instinctively. stronger than I'll ever be.

Narration: Everything about her...and the way she lived her life.

Narration: How could I ever kill someone like that? Especially by using the demonic sword of the man she loved?

Ophelia: ...I just couldn't do it...

Ophelia: And then the queen decided to love her,which meant she had to be kept alive.

Ophelia: So I...

Sigurd: Talking to yourself again?

Sigurd: I see being a Crypter doesn't keep you from feeling lonely at night. You really are a woman, aren't you, Ophelia?

Ophelia: Shut up.

Sigurd: Heh. What are you glaring at me for? Isn't there someone else you should be trying to get rid of?

Ophelia: ...

Sigurd: Me, I can't wait to see what happens next.

Ophelia: Be quiet, and go away.

Ophelia: I don't recall ordering you to leave your spirit form–

Sigurd: You did hear the news, right? It didn't take long for Thrúd and Hildr to get themselves killed.

Sigurd: It's only a matter of time until Brynhild and Chaldea show up here again. I can't wait.

Sigurd: Let's see, to put it in terms you'd understand, Master...

■■■■■: “Sunday is close at hand. Ahh, what a feeling. ”

Ophelia: Sunday...

Ophelia: ...No. Please, go away. You can't come here.

Ophelia: Stay away...Mash...

Ophelia: ...Lord Kirschtaria...

Ortlinde: ...Commander Ortlinde, returning to base.

Ophelia: Ortlinde...?

Ortlinde: The three of us commanders decided to engage the enemy alone. We were defeated.

Ortlinde: We lost over half of our hundred mass-produced units,and Commanders Thrúd and Hildr were killed.

Ortlinde: The units returned to the castle's underground hangar;Thrúd and Hildr both disappeared after their deaths.

Ortlinde: My sisters and I underestimated our enemy's capabilities.

Ortlinde: It seems that the Chaldean remnant's power and resources are sufficient to eliminate us now that Brynhild has awakened and joined them.

Ortlinde: Then again, it almost seemed to me as if...

Ortlinde: if Thrúd and Hildr wanted our sister to destroy them...

Ophelia: Ortlinde...

Ophelia: You're crying...

Ortlinde: No. No, I'm not. Thrúd and Hildr couldn't possibly have fought just to die.

Ortlinde: They were both genuinely trying to kill her.

Ortlinde: They used their full power in the attempt,but were still defeated...

Ortlinde: I...

Ortlinde: ...I should be proud that they each died a warrior's death. And yet...

Ortlinde: For some reason, water keeps dripping from my eyes, Ophelia.

Ophelia: ...

Ortlinde: It is not completely inexplicable. I am, after all, a little broken myself...

Ortlinde: I can never be like a mass-produced unit. I can understand why they did that, at least somewhat.

Ortlinde: We...

Ortlinde: We were moved to choose how we would die...even though we weren't given the order to do so...

Ortlinde: That's how much we love our sister...

Ophelia: I see.

Ophelia: ...So even you–or rather, all Valkyries...

Ophelia: ...can't help but cling to the ones you love.


Goredolf: All right, so...

Goredolf: I trust you all understand why I ordered you to make your report before going to rest, but to be clear...

Goredolf: ...we are still in a state of emergency!

Goredolf: Without the Paper Moon, we can't hope to escape this Lostbelt, since we need it to navigate Void Space!

Goredolf: So I want you to understand that it was incredibly difficult for me...

Goredolf: order you to write a report after you are so exhausted from working so hard over the past week.

Meunière: Took your sweet time getting to the point...Anyway, great work, you two!

Fou: Fou! Fou!

Mash: Thank you, Mr. Meunière.

Mash: But it's okay. We thought it was important that we write up a report.

Mash: Right, Senpai?

Fujimaru 1: I always did like to get my homework done early.

Mash: I thought as much.

Fujimaru 2: Eh, I always put my homework off to the last minute...

Mash: Oh...! I'm sorry for dragging you into it, then...

Da Vinci: Yup, well done with the report. I already looked it over.

Da Vinci: Bottom line: you two did great. Way better than I was expecting.

Da Vinci: For one thing, you recruited not one, but two Heroic Spirits to our side. First, Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of France–

Napoleon: That's me! It's a pleasure to meet you in person, tiny mademoiselle.

Fou: Fou, fooou. Fo.

Da Vinci: You too, Your Imperial Majesty. And then we have–

Brynhild: Hello, everyone. It's nice to meet all of you. I'm sorry it took me so long to introduce myself.

Brynhild: I am Brynhild, a Heroic Spirit from Proper Human History. I am happy to lend you my strength.

Goredolf: Did you say Brynhild!? must be the Valkyrie who killed Sigurd!

Brynhild: ...I am.

Fou: Fo...

Goredolf: Well, Technical Advisor, I'd say victory is as good as ours now, wouldn't you? Perhaps we'll even get to see Brynhild's legend reenacted before our eyes!

Da Vinci: I don't know...I don't like to count my chickens before they've hatched. Besides, Sigurd isn't our only enemy here.

Da Vinci: We've also got to contend with this Lostbelt's king, Scáthach-Skadi...

Da Vinci: ...and there's Koyanskaya, who's shown up here as that other Crypter, Ophelia...

Da Vinci: I'd say that out of those three, it's pretty clear who the biggest challenge will be.

Mash: Scáthach-Skadi. She's an actual goddess here.

Da Vinci: Yep. She's the unquestioned ruler here,and even more dangerous than Sigurd.

Da Vinci: I'm still amazed that her magical energy made every flake of snow in this world.

Da Vinci: Unfortunately, that means she knows what we're up to.

Da Vinci: I think I can hide us from her while we're stationary,but she's bound to notice when we get moving.

Da Vinci: She might not treat us like enemies now, but if we DO make an enemy of her, there will be nowhere to hide.

Da Vinci: ...In which case there'll be no surprising the opposition OR making any sort of escape.

Da Vinci: Right now, I'm just hoping it doesn't come to that...

Goredolf: We have no way of being sure it won't. There's no telling how she might respond once she learns we mean to eventually cut down the Tree of Emptiness.

Da Vinci: I guess so. She might even decide to attack us on the spot.

Goredolf: Hmm...

Goredolf: Still...if a goddess said we shouldn't leave the tree for later, I guess we shouldn't ignore her...

Goredolf: You there, girl. You swear you obtained this information from a goddess?

Mash: Yes. This girl was an amalgamation of three different Divine Spirits.

Goredolf: Then, you're absolutely sure she–

Mash: Yes.

Goredolf: H-hmm. If that's the consensus of multiple Divine Spirits,we definitely can't ignore it...

Goredolf: ......

Goredolf: ...V-very well then. It seems we have no choice but to make cutting down the Tree of Emptiness a top priority!

Goredolf: As of now, that is just as important as luring out Sigurd and taking back the Paper Moon!

Da Vinci: I think you're right. It looks like the Tree of Emptiness is more dangerous than we originally thought.

Da Vinci: Still...that doesn't mean we should be reckless about making an enemy of Scáthach-Skadi.

Goredolf: Hmm. As I recall, Fujimaru said she stopped Sigurd and the Valkyries from killing you.

Goredolf: That seems an excellent sign that we can reason with her. If push comes to shove, I can always dazzle her with my exquisite charm and oratory skills.

Da Vinci: Yeah, it might well end up coming to that. Just based on what you've told us...

Da Vinci: ...I get the sense that Scáthach-Skadi is trying to determine who's in the right: us or the Crypters.

Da Vinci: I mean, if she wasn't, I'm pretty sure the Shadow Border would've been buried under an avalanche by now.

Fujimaru 1: I agree.

Fujimaru 2: Then, that would make our current enemy

Goredolf: Our most pressing foe right now is the traitorous Crypters, particularly Ophelia, as well as her Servant.

Da Vinci: Indeed. Right now we need to take on Sigurd with the team we've gathered.

Da Vinci: Brynhild's Noble Phantasm was made when she killed Sigurd,so it should be up to the task again.

Brynhild: ...Yes. By my spear and soul,I promise I will bring Sigurd to heel.

Napoleon: Don't forget about me. And let's not be confused about this! As far as I'm concerned, you're all part of my new Grande Armée!

Napoleon: If you're looking to win, I'm the man for the job! As they say, victory lies ahead!

Da Vinci: Oh, I definitely have high hopes for you. Though I don't know about this new Grande Armée twaddle!

Da Vinci: To be clear, I have high hopes for your potential as well. In particular, that trump card you said you attained when you materialized.

Da Vinci: Actually, I was hoping you'd be so good as to just tell us what it is already.

Napoleon: Sorry, no can do. That goes against everything a secret weapon of last resort stands for.

Napoleon: Sorry I can't oblige, my brilliant mademoiselle.

Da Vinci: Hmph. Still, I could get used to this mademoiselle stuff...

Da Vinci: Anyway, I take it this means we can also count on this Divine Spirit amalgamation to help us out?

Napoleon: Yup. I can't promise anything at this point, but I'm fairly certain she'll join us if we can make our way that far into the castle.

Goredolf: Oh, the one in the dungeon...? Let me see...Ah yes, here's the page. Hmm.

Goredolf:, I see, I see. A daughter of the Einzbern family, eh...Hmm, this could be a stroke of luck...

Fou: Fo, fou?

Goredolf: The Einzberns had relatively little contact with the Clock Tower, but my family is one of the few with some connection to them.

Goredolf: In fact, I'll have you know our own Musik homunculus technique is–

Meunière: Why don't you save that for another time, huh? Say, our next smoke break or something.

Goredolf: But, I'm not a smoker...

Da Vinci: All right, so we've got giants wandering about in every part of this land, along with at least a few dozen more mass-produced Valkyries.

Da Vinci: It's that kind of military might that normally keeps Scáthach-Skadi's castle an impenetrable fortress.

Da Vinci: But at this point, she's still waiting to see how things play out, which means we should actually be able to get into the place.

Da Vinci: So we'd better wrap things up before she changes her mind.

Mash: ...That's true. Based on everything we've seen so far, the queen isn't one to go on the attack.

Mash: I don't believe she would treat us as an obstacle,unlike the Valkyries.

Napoleon: That lady's all about love. She as good as said she wasn't going to interfere.

Napoleon: That's just the sort of woman–er, goddess, she is.

Napoleon: Those mass productions will give us grief again if their commander loses it, like earlier today, but at least we shouldn't have to worry about the giants.

Napoleon: That said, there are some real tough fire giants hanging out in there, too!

Da Vinci: Still, none of that is beyond your ability to deal with. So, to put it all together...

Da Vinci: ...we have Brynhild, with exceptional mythological affinity for one of our major foes; Napoleon Bonaparte, who excels at directing armies...

Da Vinci: ...and protection from Sitonai, the Divine Spirit amalgamation. I'd say that gives us pretty good odds.

Da Vinci: So our goal is to take out Sigurd and reason with the queen, killing both birds with one stone. least with two stones thrown really close together.

Da Vinci: ...The only thing we can't really account for, much as I wish otherwise, is the Crypter's Mystic Eye...

Brynhild: Oh, I think I can do something about that.

Da Vinci: Really? I think that might mean we're just about good to go!

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Da Vinci: Our goal is to take back the Paper Moon and learn the location of this Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness.

Da Vinci: As far as locating either, we'll most likely have to capture the Crypter again, like we did in Russia...or get the queen to tell us herself.

Da Vinci: The latter's a tall order, but the former...not entirely impossible.

Da Vinci: If things end up getting a bit rough, Gordy can step in with his mad charm and oratory skills☆

Goredolf: Indeed! Just sit back and let me take care of it! Her frozen heart won't last a minute against the sizzle of my extra crispy bacon and eggs!

Napoleon: Oh? You mean you're not gonna use magecraft or a truth serum or something? You're a real softy for a mage.

Goredolf: I...I-it all depends on the situation! If push comes to shove, I always have my Gof Punch to fall back on!

Goredolf: (Although, I don't see someone with Mystic Eyes being all that receptive to my charms...)

Goredolf: (Not to mention Toole warned me I would be the one in tears if I tried going up against a woman...)

Da Vinci: We can cross that bridge when we come to it. Besides, this all assumes we can beat Sigurd.

Da Vinci: Once we defeat a Heroic Spirit of his caliber,Ophelia might just kind of roll over.

Meunière: You're really relieved to hear that,aren't you, Director?

Goredolf: Don't be ridiculous. I am simply willing to use the plan with the greatest chance of success.

Da Vinci: All right, so it's settled. The Shadow Border will keep heading towards the castle in old Oslo.

Da Vinci: We'll need to stop in Torsby, since it's too dangerous to keep driving at night, but even so...

Da Vinci: ...we should arrive before noon tomorrow.

Da Vinci: ...I'm sorry, Mash and Fujimaru.

Da Vinci: I know there's a child waiting for you in one of the villages, but the less contact we have, the better.

Da Vinci: I'm sure you're well aware of this, but for them, our very existence is...well...

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, I know.

Fujimaru 2: ...I get it. I think.

Mash: ...Yes.

Fujimaru 1: (Turn in for the day)

Fujimaru 2: (Go to the deck after the sun sets)

Napoleon: ...You asleep?

Fujimaru 1: No, I'm still up.

Napoleon: Right on.

Fujimaru 2: (Zzz...)

Napoleon: No problem. I'll just talk to myself, then.

Napoleon: Mind if I have a seat on your bed here? Thanks.

Napoleon: Huh, these are some decent springs. Pretty nice for a soldier's barracks.

Napoleon: ......

Napoleon: I know it's not my usual style,but I just wanted to talk a bit...

Napoleon: Would you mind listening?

Fujimaru 1: I'd be glad to.

Napoleon: Thanks. You're a good Maître.

Fujimaru 2: (Zzz...)

Napoleon: ...Got it. No problem. I'll just kinda talk my way through it myself.

Napoleon: ...It's about the Valkyrie with those beautiful amethyst eyes.

Napoleon: She's strong. Really strong. You can tell she was around in the Age of Gods.

Napoleon: We won today because of her.

Napoleon: Using the right people for the right job is as crucial on the battlefield as it is anywhere else. Having her on our side turned out to be really effective.

Napoleon: You saw it yourself. Even the Valkyrie commanders were afraid to face her, to say nothing of the others.

Napoleon: That went really well for us. Losing two commanders makes the Valkyries that much less of a threat.

Napoleon: But...we also ended up making her kill her own sisters.

Napoleon: And then there's...well...

Fujimaru 1: Sigurd...

Fujimaru 2: (Zzz...)

Napoleon: Yeah, she is the one who killed Sigurd,but it's still got to be painful for her.

Napoleon: She really did love him. Well, maybe by the end she hated him too, but there was still love there.

Napoleon: And now, well...We're asking her to kill the man she loves all over again.

Napoleon: Effective...maybe. But it's so cruel, so heartless...Still, the it looks like the sad reality is that we don't have any choice here.

Napoleon: From what I hear...Brynhild used to be something of a model Valkyrie.

Napoleon: She was an autonomous machine who would harvest heroes' souls and bring them back to Valhalla for Ragnarök.

Napoleon: Apparently, the souls she and the other Valkyries gathered were supposed to serve as Odin's army.

Napoleon: So she followed her orders and collected souls for Odin.

Napoleon: But one day, she ended up guiding a warrior to victory who wasn't the one Odin wanted.

Napoleon: In a rage, Odin stripped her of her Divinity and imprisoned her in a fiery palace.

Napoleon: That was when...


That was when the great hero, Sigurd, showed up. He used his demonic sword to cut through all the divine shields around the palace and rescued Brynhild. He knew of King Grípir's prophecy that said rescuing her would lead to his own death, but that didn't stop him.

It didn't take them long to fall in love after that. Brynhild taught him all sorts of things, including knowledge of secret runes, and they only grew closer over time...

But in the end, they were never able to be wed. There was another woman named Guðrún who was in love with Sigurd, and hatched a plan to make him hers.

First, Sigurd was made to take a magical elixir,which erased his memories of Brynhild... After that, he was told many, many lies,leading to Brynhild's betrothal to Gunnar. Of course, Brynhild didn't want any part of that, and told Gunnar she would only marry him if he managed to overcome a series of perilous trials.

But then, in a particularly cruel twist of fate, Sigurd used the runes she taught him to transform into Gunnar, and completed the trials for him. And so, Brynhild ended up marrying Gunnar after all.

It was the worst. Every single one of these people was the worst. Poor Brynhild. But she wasn't one to take this sort of thing lying down.

...So she killed them. Certain stories say she had some other man do it,but one way or another, everyone ended up dead. Her fury–and the flames it spawned–laid waste to everyone. Some stories even say that she cursed the entire family to ruination. However it went down, when all was said and done,Brynhild ended up dead her own hand.

...She's a hell of a woman. She is as frightening as she is tragic...

Napoleon: ...You can tell I know what I'm talking about, can't you?

Napoleon: Haha. Truth to tell, I'm just passing on what I got from my secret source.

Napoleon: Anyway.

Napoleon: The Valkyrie who killed Sigurd. That Goredolf guy was definitely right on the mark about her being the one for that job.

Napoleon: I don't think he meant anything bad by it, and Brynhild's not the type to get upset about it either.

Napoleon: Still...I thought you should know about this.

Napoleon: Someone's gotta take responsibility for putting her through this again. I thought you should know what you're asking of her.

Napoleon: I wish I could carry that responsibility for you, but I can't leave this Lostbelt...not to mention my prior engagement.

Napoleon: So you'll have to hold on to it instead. Just remember the true feelings she's keeping quiet.

Napoleon: I know that's a lot to ask...but it's what any commander...any person giving orders must do.

Fujimaru 1: ...Okay.

Fujimaru 2: (Nod)

Napoleon: Thanks. I owe you one.

Napoleon: You know...I get the feeling Brynhild knew it would come to this all along.

Napoleon: She knew what her materializing here meant. Poor thing. I can't help but feel sorry for her.

Napoleon: If it wasn't for my prior engagement...

Fujimaru 1: What IS this prior engagement, anyway?

Fujimaru 2: (Cough)

Napoleon: Whoops. Never mind that. Just forget I said anything.

Fujimaru 1: (Zzz...)

Napoleon: ...Haha. Thanks for staying asleep.

Napoleon: All right, I'd better be on my way.

Napoleon: The genius mademoiselle said she wants to look over my cannon, so I'd better not keep her waiting.

Napoleon: ......

Napoleon: ...I'm sorry.

Napoleon: I wasn't sure if I should bring this up or not, but if I'm gonna apologize, now seems like a good time.

Napoleon: Remember how I said I was the only hero of humanity in all of Scandinavia? Looks like I was way off the mark.

Napoleon: Since I never saw any other Servants after I materialized here, I assumed it was just me...

Napoleon: But now that we know Sitonai's here, and Brynhild...

Napoleon: ...I guess it's obvious I didn't know what I was talking about! So...sorry about that!

Napoleon: My source was obviously full of it...Dammit...

Napoleon: I should've realized what was up once he started talking about Brynhild's legend...

Fujimaru 1: Who's this source you've been–

Napoleon: Sorry, I can't tell you that. I promised I'd keep it a secret. Besides, I didn't get a good look at him.

Napoleon: He was a strange guy, I can tell you that. He looked like a normal human, but he knew all about life in this Lostbelt.

Napoleon: He also said he was trying to find out how the earth was wiped clean.

Napoleon: ...Who knows. Maybe he was the one who went around strengthening those villages' Bounded Fields.

Fujimaru 2: (Zzz...)

Napoleon: ...But never mind.

Napoleon: All right, see you tomorrow. Make sure you get plenty of rest; you're gonna need it for the final battle!

Brynhild: Oh, hello, Fujimaru.

Brynhild: I just came out here to look at the stars. Would you mind if I joined you?

Fujimaru 1: Not at all.

Brynhild: Thank you.

Fujimaru 2: I see the stars are normal, even if the sun isn't.

Brynhild: Yes...That enormous sun is quite unnatural.

Brynhild: I'm not sure why it's so enormous, either. It's much too far away for me to be able to sense anything about its magical energy.

Brynhild: I can't even focus on it clearly, perhaps because of the magical energy present in the queen's snow and ice. Not even my runes seem to be of any help.

Brynhild: ......

Fujimaru 1: About the battle we fought earlier today...

Fujimaru 2: I'm sorry about Thrúd and Hildr...

Brynhild: Please pay it no mind. It is in my nature to kill.

Brynhild: That is, at least, the sort of Heroic Spirit that humanity has made me out to be.

Brynhild: This spear was meant to kill heroes.

Brynhild: In essence, it is a Noble Phantasm designed to kill those with truly heroic souls...those worthy of my love.

Brynhild: It is the purpose of my existence...

Brynhild: There is no more perfect spear for me,who killed a great hero...

Brynhild: Yes, Goredolf Musik was right. I am the Valkyrie who killed Sigurd.

Brynhild: Indeed, there is no better way to describe me.

Fujimaru 1: I'm sorry he was so cruel...

Fujimaru 2: I'm sure he didn't mean anything by that...

Brynhild: It's all right. There was nothing cruel in what he said.

Brynhild: My purpose here was to reenact my legend. That is often where my fate leads me.

Brynhild: ......

Brynhild: ...Let me sit down.

Brynhild: There's something you should know about me...

Brynhild: I used to be an inhuman Valkyrie. I was a being who lacked a human heart, just like my sisters.

Brynhild: I was a sort of machine, always harvesting human souls to bring to Valhalla for Ragnarök.

Brynhild: The souls that the other Valkyries and I harvested were intended to serve in Odin's army.

Brynhild: So I carried out the orders I was given,and dedicated myself to collecting souls.

Brynhild: But one day, I ended up guiding a warrior to victory who was not the one Odin wanted.

Brynhild: Instead of aiding the elderly Hjálmgunnarr,I lent my aid to a young warrior named Agnar.

Brynhild: In a rage, Odin stripped me of my Divinity,and most of my strength...

Brynhild: ...turning me into a mortal woman for all intents and purposes...

Brynhild: ...before sealing me away in a palace of fire atop Mt. Hindarfjall, whose flames stretched all the way to Asgard.

Brynhild: That was when...


That was when Sigurd appeared. He tore through the divine shields guarding the palace, even destroying my armor, and cradled me in his arms. He knew of King Grípir's prophecy that said rescuing me would lead to his own death... ...and he did so anyway. He did not hesitate for an instant.

Sigurd said that...he had no intention of defying the prophecy, or of loving me... ...but he did. He loved me very much.

He called it love at first sight. And I fell in love as well. I taught him everything I knew about runes, and our love only grew... ...but as the prophecy foretold,we would never be married.

There was another woman...She plotted to steal Sigurd's memories and betrothed me to another man. I refused, but unfortunately,there was nothing I could do.

He...Sigurd...used the runes I taught him to transform into that other man, and told me:

“Accept my hand in marriage. ”

He never did understand what the tears I shed in that moment truly meant.

After that... After they took Sigurd from me,and betrothed me to Gunnar...

...I killed them. All of them. I killed. And killed. Over, and over. One after the other. I killed, and killed, and killed, and killed.

I believe I had the innocent Guthormr help me,but in the end, I was the one who killed them all. I didn't know who had robbed Sigurd of his memories, you see... I slaughtered the family and followers of Sigurd's new beloved. I did my best to confine myself to the warriors...

...but in my blind fury, I think I may have raised my spear against the defenseless...even children... I let the fires raging within me spill out and consume everything...

“The only man I love is Sigurd. None other. ”

“No one, not one single solitary person,may touch me but him. ”

Even now, I remember screaming that into the flames, laughing wildly... ...and then I plunged my own spear into my chest.

Brynhild: ...I'm dangerous.

Brynhild: I want to see Sigurd again. I want to embrace him. I want to kill him.

Brynhild: After all this time, there is still a fire burning inside me, endlessly driving me to that.

Brynhild: Even now that I'm a Heroic Spirit,a shadow projected by humanity...

Brynhild: ...the version of me inscribed in the Throne is based on the moment I killed him, wreathed in flames of madness.

Brynhild: That's why I can kill him. Why I will kill him.

Brynhild: That's why I was able to kill my adoring sisters. Why I was able to kill Sigurd before, despite my love.

Fujimaru 1: ...Isn't it painful for you?

Brynhild: ......

Brynhild: No.

Brynhild: What would be painful for me is if he is truly doing terrible things here in this Lostbelt.

Brynhild: The Sigurd I loved was a good, just man.

Fujimaru 2: I think you're pushing yourself too hard...

Brynhild: Perhaps I am. It's difficult for me to say.

Brynhild: Once I materialized in this Spirit Origin...

Brynhild: ...the fires that burn within me, eating up my mind with love and hate, screaming for me to kill him...

Brynhild: all feels so natural that I truly can't say.

Brynhild: That's why I want to thank you, Fujimaru.

Brynhild: I'm so grateful to you for taking me in.

Brynhild: You could easily have treated me as nothing more than a weapon to lay his demonic sword to waste, but instead, you–

Fou: Fou! Fo fooou.

Brynhild: ...Oh, yes.

Brynhild: Hehe, it seems we've been discovered. Come, let's go back.

Brynhild: It gets very chilly in Scandinavia at night,and we wouldn't want you to catch a cold.

Brynhild: Come, Fujimaru. Tomorrow is bound to be a day of fierce battle.

Brynhild: You should rest now for what lies ahead.

Meunière: We're moving at one hundred twenty kilometers per hour. The engine and drivetrain are both looking good.

Meunière: We're heading around the mountains, just as planned.

Meunière: Only one hundred kilometers to go until we reach old Oslo! At this pace, we should get there by noon.

Meunière: Assuming we don't encounter any obstacles, of course. Let's pray nothing attacks us this time!

Goredolf: Hmph, you should know better than to rely on prayer! A true mage is never surprised. He accounts for every possible eventuality.

Goredolf: He deals with every bump in the road calmly and efficiently. Just look at me! You don't see me praying!

Goredolf: Besides, has it escaped your notice that the only god to pray to here is their queen, who has been around here since the Age of Gods?

Goredolf: No, our only choice is to keep calm and carry on! Our wisdom and knowledge is all the weaponry we need!

Da Vinci: Nice, very nice. You sounded like a leader just there.

Da Vinci: Meunière, our new director's doing his best to keep his chin up and his nerves down. You're not gonna let him outdo us, are you?

Meunière: Heh, good point. Thanks, Da Vinci. I'm feeling a lot more motivated now!

Goredolf: E-er, that was a compliment, right? ...Oh well, this is all par for the course with a new mission underway!

Brynhild: Excuse me, but...

Brynhild: ...are you sure this is where I should be?

Brynhild: Wouldn't it be better for me to be outside with the others?

Da Vinci: It's nice of you to ask, Brynhild,but don't worry about it.

Da Vinci: You're the key Heroic Spirit in this mission. It wouldn't do for you to be out front just now.

Da Vinci: Mash? Emperor? Fujimaru? Can you hear me okay?

Fou: Fouuu!

Napoleon: Haha, this wind is great! Just make sure you don't get blown away, you two!

Mash: Understood! Make sure you stay close behind me and my shield, Master!

Mash: I should be able to block some of the wind! If that fails, we can always use a rope!

Fujimaru 1: We're okay!

Fujimaru 2: We're fine, but it's really hard to talk with all this wind!

Da Vinci: Sorry about that! Just hold out a little longer! There's no telling when more mass-produced Valkyries might show up!

Da Vinci: So we need you up there ready to respond quickly if they do.

Da Vinci: Holmes and I did design the Border to endure bombardments, but there's really only so much we can do for that, you know?

Fou: Fouuu! Fou, fou!

Napoleon: Oh? They're here already? No, wait. That's not coming from the sky...

Meunière: Multiple large magical energy signals detected! It must be a group of giants!

Da Vinci: Yup, I see them. Looks like a real tough bunch. And they're moving to cut off the Border's path, too!

Da Vinci: Meunière, hit the emergency brakes! All hands, prepare for battle!

Napoleon: You got it! Let's go, Private!

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Fujimaru 2: Get ready to fight, Mash!

E:Mash: Yes, Master! Switching Ortinax from standby mode to combat!

E:Mash: Go ahead and stop the Border whenever you're ready! I'm good to go at any time!


Scáthach-Skadi: ...I see they still have not yet learned their lesson.

Scáthach-Skadi: I do not regret deciding to love them, but I admit I did not expect them to be so tenacious.

Scáthach-Skadi: But I will accept that part of them as well,and love them just the same.

Scáthach-Skadi: Ah, my human children. My Heroic Spirits of humanity. What a sorry sight you make. You seem to have confused stubbornness with persistence.

Koyanskaya: Are you sure about this, Your Majesty? They have been causing all sorts of trouble in your Lostbelt!

Koyanskaya: Are you really not going to punish them, even after they destroyed dozens of your precious envoys?

Scáthach-Skadi: Divine punishment is death, and it is not something to be doled out lightly.

Scáthach-Skadi: Death eventually comes to all who live, so there is no need for me to help it along. I wish only to grant mercy and love.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Having said that.

Scáthach-Skadi: Though the envoys did go into that battle of their own accord, the Chaldeans were...overly bold.

Scáthach-Skadi: Perhaps I let them get away with too much. If they try to enter my castle while riding that wave of success...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...I'm afraid that may lead to their deaths this time. How deplorable.

Scáthach-Skadi: The knight and the Crypter are both eager to fight them,it seems. Are they still out on the bridge?

Koyanskaya: Last I checked. Looks like they're both planning to meet our interlopers head-on.

Koyanskaya: If it were me, I'd be cutting off their escape first, especially since there's only one way in or out...but I suppose men who're convinced nobody can ever beat them don't believe in little tricks like that.

Scáthach-Skadi: You mean the demonic sword?

Scáthach-Skadi: I will say, this does all bring back memories.

Scáthach-Skadi: Gram was once Odin's sword, as bright and powerful as the sun itself. Sigmund won it after overcoming Odin's test, and passed it on to his son.

Scáthach-Skadi: It is both ancient and newly reborn. With that at his command, Sigurd is powerful indeed.

Scáthach-Skadi: Powerful enough to compel even me to keep an eye on him. I do not think there is any human in all of Scandinavia capable of defeating him.

Scáthach-Skadi: Former goddess. Demigod. One of Odin's daughters...

Scáthach-Skadi: Brynhild may have once been the greatest Valkyrie in all the Norse lands, but not even she can defeat Sigurd.

Koyanskaya: ...Yes. I certainly hope that proves to be true.


Da Vinci: There, I can see it! Hmm, so that's Scáthach-Skadi's castle.

Da Vinci: It doesn't look very heavily armed. In fact, it reminds me of something out of modern-day European architecture.

Da Vinci: Maybe that's just how confident she is in her rule? Or maybe because there's no rebellion here anyway?

Da Vinci: Either way, there's a hell of a lot more magical energy swirling around here than there was on the snow plains. That's going to make it a lot harder to tell what's going on in there.

Da Vinci: At least the structure's easy to make out: one large bridge leading to the main building.

Da Vinci: We could theoretically go all the way around and climb up from the base, buuut, we don't have any information to help us with that tactic.

Da Vinci: Which means this is it, folks! This is where our mission really begins!

Napoleon: No turning back now! This time, I'm not planning on sneaking in OR getting captured.

Napoleon: This time, we're going in guns blazing! It's time to settle the score between the new Grande Armée and the wielder of that demonic sword once and for all!

Napoleon: Well now, that sure didn't take long!

Mash: Multiple Muspel are coming out from the ground underneath the bridge! They already know we're here!

Napoleon: Out of the way! We're coming through whether you like it or not!

Fou: Fou, fou! Kyaaau!

Brynhild: ...Let me handle this.

Napoleon: Whoa, thanks, but no thanks. You just stay back and keep yourself warmed up for now. Can't have you getting worn out in the opening skirmish!

Napoleon: That sound good to you too, Private!?

Fujimaru 1: You bet!

Fujimaru 2: ...Hm? Did you actually just ask my opinion?

Napoleon: Haha! You're the focal point of this new Scandinavian Grande Armée! Better get used to it now!

Mash: Here they come!

Napoleon: Make sure to take 'em all down! Don't let them so much as scratch the Shadow Border!


Mash: We've defeated the Muspel giants and ice beasts! That's all the hostiles that emerged from underground!

Mash: Wait...I have a visual on a new hostile approaching from the other side of the bridge.

Fou: Fooou!

Sigurd: Heh. Hehe. That's it.

Sigurd: None of you has changed much, but I can see you have a lot more momentum now than you did before.

Sigurd: You've done a lot with a little,humans and Heroic Spirits.

Napoleon: Ha! Takes a Heroic Spirit to know a Heroic Spirit,ain't that right, Mr. Big Shot?

Sigurd: Heh.

Brynhild: Sigurd...!

Sigurd: Hmm...

Sigurd: It's been a long time. The last time I saw you,you were being sealed away.

Sigurd: You're from Proper Human History too, right? Well, that's reason enough for us to fight.

Sigurd: Come at me, Brynhild, eldest of the Valkyries and daughter of Odin. If you really are a demigod, that makes you worth killing.

Brynhild: ...You speak as though I'm a stranger.

Sigurd: 'Cause you are. At least as far as I'm concerned.

Brynhild: So you claim to be a Servant from this Lostbelt? The change in your eye color is not enough to confuse the identity of my quarry.

Brynhild: You are Sigurd, son of Sigmund. You are the warrior-king who excels in every regard.

Brynhild: Every fiber of my being screams that you are the one I must love and kill.

Brynhild: ...This was never supposed to happen. My actions,my madness, in service of justice? Unthinkable.

Brynhild: But here you are, on the side of this Lostbelt. You have chosen a path that pits you against humanity.

Brynhild: won't mind dying now, right, Sigurd?

Sigurd: You're going to die here, Valkyrie.

Ortlinde: ......

Mash: Another hostile is incoming...! It's the last remaining Valkyrie commander!

Fou: Fo fou, fou!

Napoleon: So she's here too, huh. Makes sense. I had my suspicions that she might still be hung up on what happened last time we fought.

Brynhild: Stand down, Ortlinde. You were there when our sisters made their final plea.

Brynhild: There is no point in you fighting me. You know this. No point...and no need. You cannot interfere in my dance with Sigurd.

Brynhild: Stand down. Please.

Ortlinde: Sister...

Ortlinde: I've been thinking a lot about the last thing Thrúd and Hildr said.

Ortlinde: But, no matter how much I think...I can't understand it. I believe I feel something similar–it's fleeting, but it's also too overwhelming to describe.

Ortlinde: That's why I'm taking up my spear. Just like Thrúd and Hildr did...

Ortlinde: Force-expanding combat functionality. Increasing output beyond safety limiters.

Ortlinde: Overload. Overload. Synchronizing magical energy with Gram...Initiating team combat!

Sigurd: You're planning to keep up with me? You're a cheeky little thing, aren't you! Well, this should be amusing.

Napoleon: I think you mean “admirable,” Mr. Demonic Sword! You might be real strong, but you're pretty pathetic when it comes to understanding women!

Sigurd: ...Hmph. I see your little surge in momentum has led to a big surge in irritating chatter, Archer.

Sigurd: What would a modern-day man like yourself know of the Valkyries, anyway? Such Mystics are all completely beyond your comprehension.

Napoleon: Oh, I don't know about that. I'm actually pretty into mythology. I always made it a point to go exploring pyramids whenever I went on one of my expeditions.

Napoleon: So seeing a wielder of a demonic sword and a Valkyrie together like this? It's a dream come true, really!

Napoleon: And, well, this isn't something I'm thrilled about...but now that I'm a Heroic Spirit, I have a knack for crushing Mystics!

Sigurd: Oh? Take your best shot, then. You've already tried that absurdly oversized cannon on me twice, and it didn't do a damn thing.

Napoleon: Ooh la la! Only twice? That's nothing! Everyone knows the third time's the charm!

Mash: This will be the fifth time for us! This time,I'll do everything I can to defend against Gram!

Fujimaru 1: Prepare for battle!

Fujimaru 2: Let's do this thing, Mash!

Mash: Raising Ortinax output. Maintaining combat mode...All equipment, standing by. I'm good to go!

Fou: Fou fou! Foooooou!

Brynhild: Sigurd...Sigurd...

Brynhild: ...Now that I've found you,I won't rest until I've killed you!


Mash: ...!

Mash: They're very strong...but not unbeatable!

Mash: The Ortinax's output is stable. The auto-maintenance function is still working, and both Brynhild and Napoleon are providing me with extra protection.

Mash: I can still fight! I'm not going to shut down...Not before we bring down that demonic sword!

Fujimaru 1: Let's keep up the pressure!

Fujimaru 2: Keep fighting!

Napoleon: Right on! I can tell he's feeling the pain now more than ever! But I've still got some concerns!

Napoleon: How're you doing, Brynhild!? Think you can keep this up!?

Brynhild: ...That could be a bit difficult.

Brynhild: I never thought even Sigurd could be this formidable in a time of war. I thought I understood, but clearly I was mistaken.

Brynhild: The Sigurd I knew was from peacetime,when he never so much as went on an adventure.

Brynhild: I never imagined facing off against Sigurd with his demonic sword would be so...daunting...

Brynhild: Ahh, what a magnificent hero. Ahh, what a frightening man.

Brynhild: This is no good...In the face of such a strong, confident warrior...

Brynhild: I...

Brynhild: I have no choice but to set my soul ablaze.... Odinseal Prototype, engaged.

Mash: Wh-where's all this magical energy coming from...!?

Ortlinde: The Odinseal Prototype. A power given only to Sister, not us.

Ortlinde: Sister. Sister Brynhild. Would you truly go so far to defeat us...?

Da Vinci: I just detected a MASSIVE surge of magical energy! What in the world is going–Wait, is that...!?

Da Vinci: The Odinseal!? One of the Primordial Runes from the Age of Gods!?

Da Vinci: It's got to be hundreds of times more powerful than modern runes, easily. It looks like a spell from the Age of Gods...closer to True Magic than magecraft!

Da Vinci: Using that energy in a spell would be one thing, but if you let it all loose at once, it wouldn't just destroy your Spirit Origin, it would...!

Brynhild: Annihilate my soul? Yes, it would.

Mash: !

Fujimaru 1: Whoa, wait!

Fujimaru 2: You didn't say anything about that!

Brynhild: Thank you, Fujimaru. You are so very kind.

Brynhild: But...this is what it means for me to put my life on the line.

Brynhild: Forgive me for making you wait so long, Sigurd. I am finally ready to express my love and kill you once again.

Sigurd: ...What a shame. Here I thought we could still have some fun together, but then you went and pulled out one of Odin's tricks.

Sigurd: I've had enough. No more play-fighting. Time to die.

G:Ophelia: Hold it.

G:Ophelia: Hold it, Saber. How many times have I told you?

G:Ophelia: You're only supposed to kill the Servants,but you were going to kill everyone, weren't you?

Sigurd: ...Hmph.

Napoleon: ...Why hello there! If it isn't my beloved Ophelia!

G:Ophelia: You haven't changed a bit, Archer. I should have killed you when we first met.

G:Ophelia: But I do commend your efforts,much as I hate their result.

G:Ophelia: You just had to go and bring Brynhild here, didn't you?

Napoleon: You honor me, ma chérie. Haha! It's enough to make me cry out of sheer gratitude!

Mash: ...Ophelia.

G:Ophelia: ......

G:Ophelia: I see you're here again, Mash. Why? Why did you come?

Mash: It's our duty.

G:Ophelia: Duty? You mean you feel like you're honor bound to protect humanity?

Mash: ...I don't know. I haven't met enough humans to say whether I feel any obligation to them.

Mash: But...even if we end up destroying this Lostbelt as a result...

Mash: ...we can't give up on our world. Just like the Yaga in their frozen world didn't give up their survival.

Mash: No matter what happens as a result, we've decided to hold our heads high and keep moving forward.

Fujimaru 1: (...Yeah. We did, didn't we. )

G:Ophelia: ...Like Master, like Servant, I see.

G:Ophelia: I can practically see you buckling under the weight of your guilt, yet you meet my gaze, unblinking.

G:Ophelia: ...You really have grown strong, Mash.

G:Ophelia: I'm nothing like you. I could never be like you.

G:Ophelia: But I still cannot step aside. Wodime...

G:Ophelia: ...Lord Kirschtaria made a decision,and I refuse to betray his faith in me!

Napoleon: Uh-oh. Here comes her Mystic Eye!

Ophelia: ...Phenomena, schufen auf.

Ophelia: The Odinseal...What a marvelous Primordial Rune! Ich will es niemals glänzen sehen!

Brynhild: ...!

Brynhild: Nghh...! My rune is...weakening...!?

Ophelia: You shine too brightly. That's why this eye of mine refuses to see that possibility go any further.

Mash: Then, she is rewinding phenomena...! B-but...she can't be interfering with time itself!

Mash: Even if it were a Noble Color, a Jewel-rank Mystic Eye, controlling time should be impossible!

Brynhild: Khh...Aah...! Aaaaaahhh...!

Sigurd: Hehe. That's it. That's what I like to see! Your pathetic Spirit Origin can't handle the Odinseal Prototype.

Sigurd: Hehe. Now that Ophelia's stopped it, all that's left is your Spirit Core tearing itself apart, huh?

Sigurd: That's it. Squeal. Writhe in agony.

Sigurd: You deserve to crawl on your belly after reducing yourself to nothing more than a human woman.

Brynhild: Sig...urd...! Ghh...Aaaaaaaaahhh...

Fujimaru 1: Brynhild!

Fujimaru 2: Hang on! I'll heal you with a Mystic Code right!

Brynhild: N-no...It's...all right...I'm not...finished yet, Fujimaru.

Brynhild:'s dangerous for you to...worry about me like that...

Brynhild: Remember what I said...? I told you to let me handle her Mystic Eye, and I meant it.

Ophelia: !

Ophelia: ...Phenomena, schufen auf!

Brynhild: ...No. No more. One experience with your eye was more than sufficient.

Brynhild: Reinitializing Odinseal. Reengaging. Your eye will no longer lead me astray.

Brynhild: You aren't truly rewinding phenomena. No, it is more a matter of you determining their possibilities.

Brynhild: And in that can deal with it like so.

Ortlinde: You restarted it...!? But, you're a Servant...Your Spirit Core is tied directly to your brain and heart...

Ortlinde: Restarting the Odinseal now would mean...completely destroying your Spirit Core...Sister...!

Ophelia: Wh-what are you–

Brynhild: You can't see it anymore, can you? That is because I have narrowed its possibilities.

Fujimaru 1: You narrowed its possibilities!?

Fujimaru 2: What do you mean by

Brynhild: I have seen powerful, magical eyes before.

Brynhild: So I will not back down in the face of more, even should they belong to a foreign god such as Balor.

Brynhild: Even were my father himself looking down upon me...

Brynhild: ...I will still...

Brynhild: ...kill Sigurd!

Sigurd: Out of the way. Hmph. You're chatty for a damn walking doll.

Brynhild: ...Sigurd!

Ophelia: No way...That's impossible...!

Ophelia: She...she actually fixed her mind in place...!

Ophelia: She decided there was only one path forward for her, and cut off any other possibilities...How can she do that!?

Sigurd: I doubt any ordinary human could cut off possibilities through sheer force of will.

Sigurd: Not even an ordinary demigod could pull that off. But a demigod mad enough to burn herself alive...!

Sigurd: Well, she just might be twisted enough to wield a demonic spear!

Brynhild: Sigurd, Sigurd, SIGURD!

Ortlinde: Sister...

Brynhild: Hraaaaaaaaa! To you who walks the path of evil...!

Brynhild: I offer up my fire, my madness, and my love!

Brynhild: Till death do us part...Brynhild Romantia!

Mash: Brynhild's spear is...growing and changing shape!

Napoleon: That must be her Noble Phantasm...the spear made for taking warriors' lives! Damn, it's huge...! Look out for the shock wave!

Brynhild: This is my killer spear. The spear made to kill the heroic Dragon Slayer...the love of my life.

Brynhild: Sigurd! By virtue of who you are,it is impossible for you to avoid my blade!

Brynhild: It is this great spear–its weight reflecting the depths of my love–that will end you...

Brynhild: one blow!

Brynhild: It's done–

Sigurd: Nice try. But that's not going to work.

Goredolf: Wha...

Goredolf: H-how can that be!? That was Brynhild's Noble Phantasm, the hero killer!

Goredolf: And she just used it on Sigurd...the very man it was created for! It couldn't possibly have missed its target! It should have killed him!

Goredolf: So is he still alive!?

Sigurd: That Noble Phantasm of yours was definitely impressive.

Sigurd: But, unfortunately for you...I'm not Sigurd.


Sigurd: But, unfortunately for you...I'm not Sigurd. I'm not even one of those hero types the Valkyries yearn for.

Mash: !?

Brynhild: What are you...saying...

Sigurd: Ophelia. Release my second limiter.

Sigurd: Quickly. This Spirit Origin won't last long.

Sigurd: Personally, I don't mind if–

Ophelia: ...No. I won't let that happen!

Ophelia: I can't let your body be destroyed. As long as you're in this Lostbelt, you must remain my knight.

Ophelia: ...Forced Spirit Origin Ascension, final limiter release. Vanquish all who would stand in our way, my knight.

Sigurd: Final limiter released. Commencing eradication utilizing Heroic Spirit Sigurd's full capability.

Sigurd: Ahh, I feel so much lighter. It's so nice to finally be rid of that awful mask.

Sigurd: I can't imagine why he'd want to wear something like this. Hehe. What a nutjob!

Napoleon: ...Well, well. So that's what you really look like, eh, lover boy!?

Napoleon: I see Gram's changed color, too. And it looks like you're putting out exponentially more magical energy than before!

Napoleon: Haha, this oughta be fun! I even like the glasses!

Napoleon: They make you look smart, even sensible, no matter how viciously you're wielding your demonic sword! Maybe I should try them myself!

Sigurd: Ah, you mean these? I'm told they signify the wisdom of the gods or some such. I doubt they'd look good on you.

Napoleon: I don't know; I think they might.

Sigurd: Well, how about this: if you can kill me,you can try them on and find out.

Sigurd: ...Feel the power of my demonic sword.

Mash: Khh...! Did he just create fire by swinging his sword...!?

Napoleon: Sorry! Guess I went a little overboard with the trash talk! I meant to dodge out of the way, but I was a little too slow!

Mash: It's okay! Luckily, I was able to raise my shield in time! Master, did you see that...?

Fujimaru 1: Did he make that fire with a rune?

Fujimaru 2: It didn't look like he inscribed a rune...

Mash: Th-that's true. Rune magecraft relies on drawing sigils and patterns to shorten the incantation.

Mash: But when Sigurd created that fire just now–

Ortlinde: He...didn't write any runes...?

Brynhild: ...

Brynhild: ...Sigurd...

Brynhild: ...No. You aren't Sigurd. You are...


“Sometimes, ice and snow can cause people to freeze to death. ” “People must learn how to survive the cold if they want to make it through the winter. ” “But without ice and snow, there can be no spring. Without them, the earth can't rest. ” “So you mustn't hate them for being cold. One day, the sun will shine bright again, bringing with it warmth and blessings. ”

...Yes. Yes, I think so too, Sigurd. People...we...can always wait if we must. In the meantime, we can always dream of spring flowers.

“That's right. ” “Nature is bountiful and varied. There's very little in it that's completely one-sided. ” “Sometimes, it sides with justice. Others, it can be wicked and capricious. ”


...But what?

“Fire is the one thing that is best left alone. ” “Fire may have a gentle side, providing warmth that helps one get through the winter. It may even be able to guide people to prosperity. ” “But...for my part,I don't think I'll ever make use of fire runes. ”

...I've given you a great many runes. ...You should be capable of all manner of things. You should be able to wield fire far better than humans. ...And yet, you choose not to?

“Yes. I know that this may be hard for a demigod to understand, but...” “...humans need to fear fire,because fire can consume everything. ” “ sometimes, even fate. ” “That's why fire runes are the one kind I will never use. ”


Brynhild: Sigurd...!

Brynhild: Sigurd, Sigurd, Sigurd! No, no! You aren't him. You COULDN'T be him!

Brynhild: Who are you!?

Sigurd: ...Who do you think, Brynhild? I assure you: I truly am Sigurd.

Sigurd: Heh. Hehehe. What pitiful creatures humans are!

Sigurd: If only you were a god, you would know what this fire in my soul signifies!

Sigurd: Pitiful! Pitiful! Pitiful!

Sigurd: Hehe! How unsightly...I can't stand to look at you any longer!


Sigurd: ...Enough!

Mash: Ortinax, maximum output...!

Mash: Master...! His demonic sword is more powerful than anything we've seen before!

Mash: But, I refuse to let him beat me! He may be strong, but strength is all he has!

Mash: And we swore we would never lose to empty strength like that ever again...!

Ophelia: Saber!

Sigurd: Shut it!

Sigurd: We were just getting to the good part. Stay out of this, Ophelia. Keep your damn mouth shut!

D:Brynhild: Wrong.

Sigurd: Khh...!

Brynhild: Who are you...?

Brynhild: Who are you...? Sigurd? No...

Brynhild: You!

Brynhild: What are you doing!?

Sigurd: Hehe. Me? I'm–

Sigurd: !!!

Brynhild: ...I've pierced your armor.

Brynhild: Can you feel that, you who wears Sigurd's face?

Brynhild: My spear has destroyed your armor, torn through your flesh, shattered your bones, and cut your Spirit Core in two.

Brynhild: Every thrust of my spear, every cannon shot,every shield bash, wore you down bit by bit.

Brynhild: And now, at blade has found its mark.

Mash: Brynhild...!

Fou: Fooou! Kyau!

Sigurd: Ha...ha...Hahaha...Haha...!

Sigurd: Magnificent...!

Goredolf: Wh-what is it? What's going on!? We hardly have any picture in here! It's impossible to tell what's happening! Did you beat him!?

Goredolf: So Sigurd has finally fallen to Brynhild's spear! I'm sure you'll confirm that's accurate!

Da Vinci: Wait. Something's wrong.

Da Vinci: These magical energy values are...strange...Watch out! This isn't over yet!

Sigurd: Heh, hehe!

Sigurd: Hahaha! That's it! At last...

Sigurd: Finally...finally, someone managed to pierce Sigurd's Spirit Core...! This is what I've been waiting for!

Napoleon: What...?

Sigurd: How I've waited!

Sigurd: Now that someone who can defeat me...who can kill me...has finally appeared...

Sigurd: ...that accursed Command Spell that kept me from taking my own life no longer matters!

Sigurd: Haha! Hahahahahahahaha...Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

Ophelia: Ah...

Ophelia: A-ah...?

Ophelia: Saber? What happened?

Ophelia: You can't have lost...My knight...Sigurd...couldn't possibly lose...

Ophelia: That was why...That was why I released your final limiter!

Mash: Ophelia...?

Ophelia: Ahh...This...This can't be happening...! No...No, no...!

Ophelia: ...!

Ophelia: ...Phenomena, schufen auf!

Ophelia: I won't let a new Saber be born from Sigurd's destroyed Spirit Core! Ich will es niemals glänzen sehen!

Sigurd: Ha. Don't bother.

Sigurd: The Valkyrie was kind enough to show me how to get around that. Did you forget already, Ophelia?

Sigurd: True, I might be just another phenomenon myself,but I still have a mind and soul.

Ophelia: Ah...Ah...

Ophelia: No, no, no, no...! Mash! I can't stop him...!

Ophelia: Once he breaks Sigurd...his won't be long before he's here...!

Ophelia: I can't stop him! I can't!

Ophelia: And after Lord Kirschtaria entrusted him to me...!

Ophelia: The flames...they're coming...!

Narration: Screaming, I point a trembling finger skyward. Above lies the light that illuminates this world. The fire that burns ceaselessly in the sky. The oddly large ball of flame that oversees the entirety of this Scandinavian Lostbelt.

The star that sits in the middle of the sky. ...The sun. Just now, the sun shone intensely though it were responding to my screams.

It burns. It burns. This is not what a star is meant to do. Even as it hangs in the sky, on the precipice of outer space... begins to undulate, like a fetus moving in the womb. This is not a proper star. This is no star made of mere flame.

It's far more akin to the magma that bubbles deep beneath the ground...only more foreboding. ...I wish I could look away, yet my Mystic Eye still casts its gaze upon that awful sight.

There is no possibility of stopping it. Its turbid, fiery streams wriggle and squirm, and now... ...they spill out. They're falling. They're pouring onto the ground...

Ahh, the sun is falling. Ahh, the flames are pouring down. Now, an enormous humanoid form is taking shape...sliding out from the hole of the false sun.

A giant... Yes, it must be a giant. But its form is nothing like any of the others.

His body towers over all other giants. The heat he radiates is devastating to all other forms of life. He is the embodiment of flame. He is the fire of the false sun.

He is this Lostbelt's true Saber, hiding in the shadows of the soul and Spirit Core belonging to a Heroic Spirit from Proper Human History, Sigurd... He is the God Slayer, the cornerstone of the Norse Age of Gods' Ragnarök.

He is the overseer of this Norse Lostbelt's sole source of heat. He is the ruler of Muspelheim, realm of fire and flame, and destruction incarnate. He is the wielder of the flaming sword. The dark one. The one destined to kill the gods and, in time, lay waste to all the land.

...His True Name is Surtr, the Fiery King of Giants...

Section 13: Bringing Twilight Here Once Again (Beginning)

Narration: ...I've always hated Sundays.

Narration: Why?

Narration: Simple. I hated myself.

Narration: For me, Sundays were a prison, and I hated how I was never able to escape from them. I could never take that first step.

Narration: I detested how weak I was...How my parents' wishes felt like a curse, leaving me unable to even set foot outside.

Narration: I never even thought about running away. The idea of leaving never so much as entered my mind.

Narration: Which is why...I was always waiting for someone.

Narration: Someone who would come and save me. Someone who would let me out of here.

Narration: Someone who would tell me:

Narration: “You don't have to do anything. You don't have to grant anyone's wishes. ”

Narration: I waited for someone like that for so long.

Narration: ...Though I knew no such person would ever come.

Narration: Even now, I think...

Narration: ...some part of me is still waiting for someone like that.


The moment the sun fell... ...every giant across the Lostbelt looked up at the sky and roared in unison. All at once, the featureless masks the queen had placed on their faces in order to control them shattered. As their masks disappeared, so too did the days they had spent slumbering without a king. Now, they were truly awake.

The giants' roars echoed throughout the land... ...singing the praises of the king who would bring about Ragnarök, in a language humans could never understand.

O king. O king. O king. Surtr, wielder of the flaming sword.

Carry on our battle. Carry on our war.

It is not enough that the old gods are dead by your hand. We must raze this ancient land to the ground.

Let Ragnarök recommence. Bring on the joyful times, the end-time.

...Let us begin the destruction. Now is the time.


Gerda: Huh?

Gerda: Where did the sun go...?

Holmes: ...What's going on?

Da Vinci: Holmes! What about your wound? Weren't you supposed to be recovering for another two days?

Holmes: Indeed, and I'm still rather enjoying the effects of the painkillers. But I'll gladly take that over missing the climax.

Holmes: A great detective can only forestall his entrance so long, after all.

Goredolf: Well said. I expect nothing less from my administrative advisor. I'm proud to have such a responsible subordinate.

Goredolf: N-now then, I'm sorry to ask this when you're still so tired, but would you mind explaining what's going on?

Goredolf: Just when I thought we had defeated that accursed Sigurd,the sun went and fell out of the sky.

Goredolf: And look at that. There's no way that isn't some kind of there?

Goredolf: Every bone in my body is screaming at me to get away from that thing as quickly as possible. Do you have any idea what's going on?

Da Vinci: Good question. I don't know if it's the same species as the other giants, but it's definitely big enough to qualify.

Da Vinci: But unfortunately, our instruments aren't really doing us a lot of good here. It looks to be a monster that changes size depending on how it's being viewed.

Da Vinci: This isn't some physical calamity, like Ivan the Terrible. It's a conceptual one, capable of destroying the world.

Holmes: ...So I was too late.

Holmes: This is certainly enough to make me rue my principle of never discussing something without first obtaining conclusive proof.

Holmes: The flame that flickers across this Lostbelt's northern mountains? It fell from Muspelheim, the fire realm.

Holmes: As for that enormous sun, I believe it is most likely Muspelheim itself, given form by the gods...

Holmes: In other words, the body of Surtr, the giant of Ragnarök.


Narration: ...Our first Rayshift trial, a landmark occasion. As Team A, we were supposed to investigate Singularity F.

Narration: Instead, our team met its end, and the world was enveloped in a fire that incinerated humanity.

Narration: Fire, fire, fire.

Narration: Nothing but fire as far as I could see.

Narration: My Mystic Eye is one of prolongation. Its rank is Jewel.

Narration: It lets me see possibilities. You could say it's a form of precognition.

Narration: Once I see something, I can pin it in place...but that only lets me temporarily halt possibilities I do not desire from coming to pass.

Narration: Its true nature lies in seeing the myriad possibilities before me.

Narration: So then, what's this?

Narration: Now that we're trapped in our Coffins, the possibility of us escaping the death that approaches us is...

Narration: ......

Narration: ...distant. Far too distant.

Narration: It may not truly be zero, but it might as well be.

Narration: No matter how far I stretch...I can't reach it. I can't hope to pin down anything.

Narration: If an enemy were here, I might be able to stop them from attacking or casting a spell, but this? This is beyond me.

Narration: I was helpless to do anything about Lev Lainur's sabotage,or the flames incinerating humanity.

Narration: Once the flames consumed me, that would be it. There was no escape for me, or for anyone else.

Narration: Maybe that's why my fate never bothered me the way that perhaps it should have.

Narration: All I felt was disappointment, for my inability to express what I felt honestly to the very end.

Narration: ...Yes.

Narration: I may never have reached for it myself, but just once,I would have liked to have held Wodime's hand...

???: “Congratulations on your rebirth. I always believed you could save the world. ”

???: “Greetings,Kirschtaria Wodime. ”

???: “Will this work for conveying information to you? I must say, using words is such a bother. ”

Narration: Had my vocal cords still been working, I'm sure I would have gasped to find my eye was seeing the world in the Coffin next to mine.

Narration: I saw a brilliant light shining in pitch darkness,and Wodime opposite it.

Narration: I had never seen Wodime so childlike before. Not in appearance, mind you, but in his strength–or rather, the lack of it.

Narration: He was horribly injured and fatigued, to the point that even the effort of breathing seemed likely to kill him.

Narration: It was as if he had seen the end of the he had fought to prevent it.

Narration: He was so bruised and battered that I could almost believe such a ridiculous delusion was actually though he was only alive now through sheer miraculous luck.

???: “We now share our circumstances. This...humanity you come from will be incinerated, and fade away. ”

???: “But that is of no consequence to us. It may be unexpected, but not so much as to change our plans. ”

???: “The assault has led to the closure of the expanse. Soon, both you and humanity will meet your end. ”

???: “Yet unfortunately, God still has no body for this joyous feat. ”

???: “You'll help me with that, won't you,Kirschtaria Wodime? ”

???: “You are a Crypter, which makes you perfect to spread my word. ”

Narration: ...I didn't know what was going on. All I knew was I could sense our end approaching.

Narration: He had been chosen, and we had not.

Narration: Wodime would go on to survive,and we would remain trapped in darkness.

Kirschtaria: ...No.

Kirschtaria: I'm afraid I alone won't be enough. I must strongly recommend that the other six join me to assist.

Narration: I could sense the light's confusion. Indeed, my own mind all but went blank in shock.

Narration: A god, a human, even a tiny ant crawling along the ground could see how out of line he was.

Narration: It was clear to anyone watching that his remarks, his suggestion, would usually be out of the question.

???: “I don't understand. Once the world is wiped clean, you will be invincible. ”

???: “Why would you want competition when one of you would be more than sufficient? ”

Kirschtaria: I understand that. But invincibility and omnipotence are not the same.

Kirschtaria: There is a nonzero chance that one of the other six may surpass me. As long as that possibility exists, however slight, I will not dismiss it.

Kirschtaria: Give them the chance to choose for themselves. There is no point in me rebuilding human history on my own.

Narration: Wodime wasn't proposing that his responsibilities be shared.

Narration: He believed in our worth as individuals. It was a shining example of unwavering humanity.

???: “...Restoring what was lost will take considerable effort. ”

???: “Bringing a single human back to life may only take mere moments, but it requires a level of suffering sufficient to stop the entire world in its tracks. ”

???: “Consider the hell you just endured as an example. ”

???: “What's more, their bodies have sunk into the Void. They can no longer pay that price themselves. ”

???: “Can you pay it for them,Kirschtaria Wodime? ”

???: “Can you withstand the agony that comes with fighting the entire world six more times? ”

Kirschtaria: Of course. If it is humanly possible, then I can do it.

Narration: ...I saw it for myself, clear as day.

Narration: Even as every breath ravaged him, spasms of humiliation and despair rocking his face...

Narration: ...I saw him unflinchingly declare himself to that light.

Narration: I'll never forget that sight. The sight of the greatest strength humankind could possibly possess.

Narration: ...The next thing I remember, my eyelids fluttered open. Seeing how hard Wodime fought, seeing his determination, I found strength of my own.

Narration: I may not be capable of following in his footsteps,but at the very least, I want to help him.

Narration: I want to live up to the faith he showed in us,in insisting we be given our own chance to choose.

???: ...Circumstantial change confirmed. The price has now been paid.

???: I have a proposal for you chosen ones. An offer for those of you who were cast aside.

???: If you desire acclaim, then choose rebirth. If you desire indolence, then choose eternal sleep.

???: It makes no difference to God.

Narration: I nodded.

Narration: The light grew brighter, blinding me. We were each given our tasks: to grow our assigned Lostbelts.

Narration: I didn't so much as blink. With my Mystic Eye,I cast my gaze over the world I was given.

Narration: I looked far and wide, to the very edges...

Narration: that I could live up to his hopes,and face my destiny as he did his.

Narration: Even if doing so should take me down an evil path that had been pruned away from human history...

Narration: ...I wished that I might find a glimmer of hope somewhere along the way.

Narration: And then...

Narration: right eye saw something so very far away.

Narration: In a Norse world unlike our own,bound to one day be cut off from humanity...

Narration: ...where fiery destruction raged as well.


Surtr: “...You're looking at me, aren't you? ”

Surtr: “Who are you? ”

Surtr: “Not that pompous fool, Odin; I reduced him to ashes. Nor the ferocious Fenrir; him, I ate. ”

Surtr: “Are you one of the surviving gods? ”

Surtr: “Hmm, yes. I suppose one of the gods did escape my flames. ”

Surtr: “I see. Then you must be Skadi, the goddess of snow. ”

Ophelia: ...No. No, I'm not.

Ophelia: ...I'm me.

Ophelia: ...I am a woman who was meant to die in a world consumed by flame.

Surtr: “You don't say. ”

Ophelia: ...Who are you?

Ophelia: ...Are you the Sixth Imaginary Element? A demon?

Surtr: “No. ”

Surtr: “I am flame. ”

Surtr: “The flame destined to consume all the Norse lands. ”

Surtr: “...I am the last remnant of Ymir's wrath. ”

Ophelia: ...Norse? ...I see. Now I understand.

Ophelia: ...Perhaps it's my old Nordic bloodline that's to blame.

Ophelia: ...You must be Surtr.

Surtr: “Oh? ”

Ophelia: ...The Fiery King of Giants. The dark one. The giant of Ragnarök who once ended the world.

Surtr: “Heh. So you do know who I am, woman. ”

Surtr: “Fascinating. So you are seeing my flame, even as you die from the flames consuming your own world. ”

Surtr: “That's right. I am the one who will bring an end to all things. ”

Surtr: “I am the one who put an end to the gods and their prattling on about fate. I consumed the land...humans...everything. ”

Surtr: “I will end the Age of Gods. I will end the entire world. ”

Surtr: “I will see that there is no tomorrow. ”

Ophelia: ...Well that's not how the legend goes.

Ophelia: ...According to myth, your flames consume the Norse Age of Gods, but it's followed by the Age of Humanity.

Surtr: “That is what was fated to be. ”

Surtr: “But I don't care. ”

Surtr: “What need have I of a future I cannot see with my own eyes? ”

Surtr: “Everything should end with me. When this planet ends, I will have the final laugh as it all fades away. ”

Surtr: “At least, that is what I swore to myself, but–”

Ophelia: ...I see. You failed too.

Surtr: “Yes. I failed. I've spent a considerable amount of time struggling to free myself from Odin's prison...”

Surtr: “...but it seems fate is a more formidable foe than I thought. This is as far as I go. ”

Surtr: “My flame will be pruned away along with these Norse lands, crushing my dream of consuming everything. ”

Surtr: “Hehe. What a pitiful sight this world and I must make. ”

Ophelia: ...So that's where your world ended.

Surtr: “Indeed. ”

Ophelia: ...Then you have that in common with us. Although I was supposed to save my world, not destroy it.

Surtr: “Is that so? ”

Ophelia: ...It was nice to meet you, Fiery King of Giants.... But now, I guess this is goodbye.

Surtr: “Farewell, human woman, who cast her gaze from another world ending in fire. ”

Surtr: “If, by some miraculous stroke of luck...”

Surtr: “ should ever happen to lay your eyes on me again...”

Surtr: “...I will show you my flaming sword. ”

Ophelia: ...Your Noble Phantasm?

Surtr: “The end of this planet. ”


Kirschtaria: Good, you're all here. I knew you wouldn't turn down a challenge.

Beryl: That's one way to put it. Another is that given our choices, there was only one sane answer.

Beryl: This is one helluva tall order, but if the alternative was death, I'm not gonna say no.

Akuta Hinako: ...I would not have minded dying, but I could not ignore the prospect of these Lostbelts.

Akuta Hinako: I knew human history was fragile, but I didn't know it had branched out to that degree. I suppose you learn something new every day.

Kadoc: ...I don't care what it takes. This is a huge pain in the ass, but at least it gives us a chance to win.

Kadoc: So fine, I'll do it. Basically, we just gotta save the world, right?

Ophelia: ...


I couldn't say anything back then. I was completely at a loss for words.


I couldn't laugh it off like Beryl,or brood on it like Kadoc.


Not when Wodime's demeanor was so different from what I had expected.

Kirschtaria: ...Now, while I would like nothing more than to celebrate our reunion, our race is already underway. There is no call for fraternization beyond what is absolutely necessary.

Kirschtaria: By now, you should all have connected to your Lostbelts from your Coffins, and formed contracts with your Servants.

Kirschtaria: I've told you all the information I was given. There's nothing more to add.

Kirschtaria: It won't be long now before the Disciples of the Foreign God arrive. Once they do, I'd like you all to go with them to your respective Lostbelts.


Nobody else knew the truth.


None of them had any idea what sort of price he had paid to give the rest of us in Team A a chance.


He could have boasted about it. He could have held it over our heads. Instead, he never even brought it up.

Ophelia: I don't understand. None of us would be here now if it wasn't for you, Kirschtaria!

Ophelia: Why didn't you say anything!? If you'd just told them what you did for us, they would do whatever you say!

Kirschtaria: I see. So you knew, Ophelia.

Kirschtaria: It's simple. I didn't tell them because it's not important for what lies ahead.

Kirschtaria: I want humans to do the best they possibly can. That goes for myself, and it goes for you as well.

Kirschtaria: Gratitude is nice, but not if it leads to their putting less than their full efforts into this endeavor.

Kirschtaria: So don't worry about it. I did that for my sake, not yours. It worked out, and I got what I wanted from it.

Kirschtaria: Besides, if one of you ends up surpassing me,that will make my job easier, right?

Kirschtaria: I risked nothing and stood to gain everything;none of you owes me anything for it.

Ophelia: ...Kirschtaria...


That was the moment I knew,without a shadow of a doubt.


Kirschtaria Wodime was different. He always had been.


He had been on a whole other level from the rest of us ever since he was born. His mindset, his character, his bearing–all fit for a king.


There was simply no other explanation for how he could have accomplished something so incredible.

Kirschtaria: Ophelia, you'll be taking Scandinavia.

Kirschtaria: Be very careful when you summon your Servant after you get there.

Kirschtaria: Destruction factors heavily into Norse mythology. In such a world, it is when matters appear to be going well that one needs to be most on their guard.

Kirschtaria: A good ending for the Norse could in truth be quite a bad ending for us.

Kirschtaria: But then...I suppose I needn't warn you of that. You have your Mystic Eye, after all.

Kirschtaria: You can see into the future far better than I can. As such, you should be more than capable of growing Scandinavia's Tree of Emptiness to maturity.


...That's right. The king I swear allegiance to–the god I worship–isn't the Foreign God at all.


This is the man I will serve. If it will help him realize his ideals, I'll gladly become a Crypter.

Ophelia: ...

Ophelia: I will. I promise, Lord Kirschtaria...

Sigurd: ...I see. So this is a Servant.

Ophelia: Your body is made of ether. You might not like how it feels, but try to get used to it.

Ophelia: I'm glad you were the one who answered my summon, Dragon Slayer...Wielder of Gram.

Ophelia: I know it was a special summoning ritual, but it's still fortunate that I was able to get you without a catalyst.

Ophelia: Maybe it's because of my mother's Nordic bloodline.

Ophelia: That certainly seems a far more likely cause than my father's fondness for Richard Wagner.

Sigurd: Wagner?

Ophelia: Oh, right. Sorry. In my world's history,Sigurd and Siegfried are different people.

Ophelia: So that makes my mother's bloodline seem even more likely.

Ophelia: At any rate, it's nice to meet you, Saber.

Ophelia: My name's Ophelia Phamrsolone.

Ophelia: I have to say, I'd never have guessed you would exist in this Lostbelt. I would've thought–

Sigurd: You're not wrong. The Heroic Spirit this body belongs to isn't from this Lostbelt.

Ophelia: ...?

Ophelia: No, that can't be right. We Crypters are meant to form contracts with a Heroic Spirit that's tied to our land...

Sigurd: Ophelia. I see. So your name is Ophelia Phamrsolone.

Sigurd: Ahh, that's a lovely name. Phamrsolone. It puts me in mind of Thrones, a type of angel.

Sigurd: If you are to be an angel,then you should serve me as your god.

Ophelia: Wha...What are you saying, Sigurd?

Sigurd: Oh come now, don't be so cold. You already know who I am.

Sigurd: From my perspective, we just met the other day. Is that not true for you?

Sigurd: I'll never forget that gaze of yours. The way you looked at me right before my world, my reality was pruned away...

Sigurd: ...I remember looking you right in the eye, Ophelia.

Ophelia: Those eyes...

Ophelia: ...You're...

Sigurd: You saw me. And I saw you.

Sigurd: Rejoice, daughter of humanity. In that moment, our fates were intertwined.

Sigurd: Hehe. Heh. Hahahahahahahaha! Did you really not notice, Ophelia Phamrsolone!?

Sigurd: My soul was linked to your unusual Mystic Eye! It's been hiding inside of you all this time!

Sigurd: You did form a contract! I'm the Servant you gained in your Lostbelt!

Sigurd: Rejoice, Ophelia! Your Servant is none other than Surtr,the Fiery King of Giants himself!

Ophelia: ...!

Ophelia: N-no...No! That can't be right! I'm a Master. I know all about the Heroic Spirits I summon!

Ophelia: You're Sigurd! The greatest hero of Scandinavia,heir to Gram, the demonic sword–

Sigurd: Do not force me to repeat myself. You are referring to the body I possess.

Sigurd: Yes, you succeeded at summoning Sigurd. That much is true. But thanks to your Mystic Eye...

Sigurd: ...I snuck into the summoning spell and melded with his soul! Hehe. Now I control his entire body!

Ophelia: Ah!

Ophelia: An accidental summoning...! No, this would be a multiple simultaneous summon, leading to...

Sigurd: Now, now. Don't make that face, Ophelia.

Sigurd: Go on. Smile. Breathe a sigh of relief. I may just be a soul, but I'm still your Servant.

Sigurd: So I'll be your knight, just like you're my woman.

Sigurd: Now...what do you say we seal the deal!?

Ophelia: Stay back! Don't...come near me...

Sigurd: Heh, a Command Spell? By all means.

Sigurd: In fact, that's one of the things I want the most. Go ahead, tie this body down. Destroy it!

Ophelia: What...?

Sigurd: That infernal Odin imprisoned my homeland–my foundation.

Sigurd: Muspelheim has been left behind in this Lostbelt. I have to get it back.

Sigurd: If this body is shattered, my soul will be freed. Then, I will destroy Odin's prison...and that false sun of his will fall.

Sigurd: Once that has happened...I will materialize in my true form, as the Fiery King of Giants.

Ophelia: !!!

Ophelia: The sun...?

Ophelia: You mean, that enormous sun is...actually–

Sigurd: Yes. My true body. Or rather, the prison Odin built to hold it.

Sigurd: Hehe. Did the mages of Proper Human History not know? Muspelheim, realm of fire, home to all Muspel...

Sigurd: in fact my own body! It is the endless flame burning with an insatiable hunger for destruction!

Sigurd: I will need it to resume Ragnarök,which was so rudely interrupted.

Sigurd: Odin's seal was quite solid...but thankfully,you saw to that when you released my soul.

Sigurd: The rest is easy. I'll escape this shell, and my soul will destroy my body's prison from the outside.

Sigurd: That prison may be difficult to escape from within,but it is all too vulnerable from the outside.

Sigurd: I struck Odin a fatal blow after I devoured Fenrir. The Allfather clearly didn't have the strength left to secure my prison from both sides.

Sigurd: Hmm...

Sigurd: I suppose I should expect no less from the soul of a great hero. Now that we are meshed together, it will be difficult to escape this body on my own.

Sigurd: It's tortuous, having to constantly face Sigurd's standing in a hall of infinite mirrors.

Sigurd: It would be far quicker if I could turn my blade on myself...

Sigurd: ...but failing that, I would be grateful if YOU would end me, Ophelia.

Ophelia: ...If I...

Ophelia: ...kill you...

Ophelia: ...the sun...Surtr...will fall...?

Sigurd: Indeed. Once I take back my body...I will resume Ragnarök, and this Lostbelt will be the first to burn.

Sigurd: From there, I will lay waste to the rest of the planet.

Sigurd: I can't wait to show you, Ophelia.

Sigurd: Soon, you'll get to see my flaming sword...

Sigurd: ...end the entire world.

Ophelia: ...!

Narration: Instead of screaming out in despair...

Narration: ...I quickly used a Command Spell to forbid him from killing or harming himself.

Narration: Surtr is the King of Giants, the destructor of the end-time. I can't let him escape Sigurd's body.

Narration: If he does, everything will burn. It will be the Incineration of Humanity all over again.

Narration: No, not quite. His fire would have to extend into the past to match the Incineration of Humanity.

Narration: But his fire will burn up everything in the present,and leave nothing for tomorrow.

Narration: All of a sudden, it felt like something was twisting my heart. It hurts...

Narration: I can feel my body groaning in pain. It's like I'm being hollowed out from the inside.

Narration: Without warning, I find myself in a terribly precarious situation. Am I doing the right thing?

Narration: Should I tell Queen Skadi? No. That would be much too risky.

Narration: The King of Giants is the gods' sworn enemy. I cannot imagine her merciful love extending to him.

Narration: With every thought, I can feel my body groaning under the pressure. It hurts. Something is...interfering with me, with my plans...

Narration: What should I do? I can't make this call on my own.

Narration: But...what choice do I have?

Narration: We Crypters can't interact directly. I have to resolve this situation myself.

Narration: Besides, we're not allies. Not really.

Narration: Once we manage to grow our Trees of Emptiness to maturity, we'll just end up competing for each other's territory.

Narration: In the end, there will only be one territory left. I can't afford to show any weakness.

Narration: That's why...


Ophelia: ...That concludes my report.

Kirschtaria: I see. You did well to bring this to my attention, Ophelia.

Ophelia: Not at all, Lord Kirschtaria.

Ophelia: Once I determined the danger this situation posed,I thought you should decide how to handle it.


I'm a mage. I don't have the same kind of feelings that normal people do.


I don't experience love or romance.


All I feel is undying loyalty towards those with vastly superior intellects.


Kirschtaria Wodime shines brighter than anyone. He isn't afraid of anything.


He'll know what to do. I'm sure of it.


As long as he shows me the path I need to take,I'm sure I can summon up the courage to follow it.

Kirschtaria: Ophelia Phamrsolone.

Ophelia: Yes, Lord Kirschtaria?

Kirschtaria: You were right to use a Command Spell. And this summon you have achieved is fascinating.

Kirschtaria: The King of Giants in Norse mythology is akin to a god of destruction. By summoning him, you have, in essence, summoned an ancient god.

Kirschtaria: You should be proud that you were born to a family devoted to the study of evocation and the summoning arts.

Kirschtaria: ...Ophelia.

Ophelia: Yes?

Kirschtaria: You have gained an exceptional resource to help bring about the Reconstruction of Humanity.

Kirschtaria: You say Surtr told you he was going to burn the entire planet?

Kirschtaria: Fascinating. I wonder if that would still work on a world that has been wiped clean.

Kirschtaria: At any rate, the data would seem to indicate that you have him fully under control.

Kirschtaria: As long as you can continue to rein him in without incident, he should be a tremendous asset. Though of course, that does pose considerable risk.

Ophelia: ...Understood.

Ophelia: Then I shall do my best to live up to your expectations, Lord Kirschtaria.

Ophelia: From here on, I will address my half-Surtr, half-Sigurd Servant as Saber, and turn his power to our cause.

Ophelia: I vow that I will grow my Lostbelt to maturity with his help.

Narration: I know I can live up to Lord Kirschtaria's hopes. I know I can fight.

Narration: Building a relationship with a Heroic Spirit that has a mind of his own...Controlling one's Servants...These are key problems every Master has to face.

Narration: I can manage it. This is what I've trained for.

Narration: I won't fail. I WILL grow my Tree of Emptiness to maturity.

Narration: I'll ensure this Lostbelt continues to flourish alongside the queen, and the most powerful knight ever to live.

Narration: The tree continues to grow well. It has been all this time.

Narration: Everything is going well here. At was.

Narration: I...I...

Napoleon: Enchanté, Crypter! I'm a Servant from Proper Human History. The only hero of humanity in all of Scandinavia!

Napoleon: Hey now...What's the matter?

Napoleon: ...What are you so afraid of, mademoiselle?


...The false sun is falling.... The Fiery King of Giants returns.

In the book of Genesis, it's written that the Creator rested on the seventh day. In this Lostbelt, fire is what comes on the seventh day. Not a day of rest, but the day of Ragnarök.

After Wednesday...Odin's day... After Thursday...Thor's day...After Friday...Freyja's day... Then, after Saturday...Saturn's day...the day of the sun finally arrives.

The false sun–the ball of fire glowing in the sky–is falling to the ground instead of remaining aloft. It shakes and cracks the ground, shattering mountains as it shifts and writhes to stand on its feet.

In Proper Human History, this event manifested in the eruption of Mt. Katla, but not here. Our myth is this world's reality. Muspelheim–realm of fire, land of flame.

The blazing inferno standing in for the true sun in this Lostbelt's sky. Now, the Muspel's leader–Muspelheim itself–descends upon us.

One of the great kings. The one who will cast twilight's pall far and wide, arrives as a sun gone mad. ...The only King of Giants in all the world.... Surtr, and his great flaming sword.

Napoleon: Did you say Surtr...!? Man, you weren't kidding!

Napoleon: Hah! Figures he'd be a big bugger! I know the Age of Gods never ended here, but come ON!

Fou: Fou, fooou. Fo, fou.

Mash: The Fiery King of Giants! The Border's instruments can't even properly measure his magical energy!

Mash: We can't even tell how far he is from us, either! It's not clear whether he's way out there or...

Mash: It's no use! I can't even get a clear visual on him! It could be some sort of heat mirage or something...

Mash: Either way, it is impossibly hot! Make sure you stay behind me, Master!

Fujimaru 1: Roger that!

Fujimaru 2: I'll get my Mystic Code ready!

Holmes: I strongly advise you keep your distance,[♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru. Your Mystic Code may have been outfitted to accommodate Russia's extreme cold, but it is not nearly so effective against extreme heat.

Holmes: Make sure to remain where Ms. Kyrielight can protect you.

Mash: Holmes! You're healed! Thank goodness!

Holmes: Absolutely. I've had plenty of rest. It was nice to fall asleep without anything on my mind for once.

Holmes: But I also can't deny that it was dreadfully dull. You will have to inform me about your recent escapades when we have the time.

Goredolf: I-is this really the time to just be idly catching up with each other!? The temperature outside the Border is skyrocketing even as we speak!

Goredolf: It's enough of a shock learning that giants and the like exist here, but now we find out they have a king!?

Goredolf: There's no telling how many reports I'll have to write now! Assuming anyone even believes them!

Goredolf: G-granted, it's not as though we're making any of this up...but once this Lostbelt disappears, any credibility those reports will have is going to disappear along with it...

Holmes: Ah, hello, Mr. Goredolf. I see you are finally beginning to understand some of the problems Chaldea has been facing this entire time.

Holmes: Perhaps now you may understand why, at first blush, our reports from the Singularities may have seemed so preposterous.

Goredolf: G-grr...Never mind that now! We're in danger here! Get us the hell out, right away!

Goredolf: It's difficult to tell with all this fire,but I don't think that giant is as far away as he looks.

Napoleon: You're right about that, Monsieur Director! I've got a feeling he's way closer than you think!

Napoleon: Hey, King of Giants! Surtr, right!?

Napoleon: You're not just gonna go away on your own, are you!? Am I right to assume you're our enemy!?

Surtr: “Of course. ”

Mash: I can hear him! No, wait. He's communicating telepathically, via magecraft!

Napoleon: Here he comes...! You two, keep Brynhild safe!

Fujimaru 1: Got it...!

Mash: Right!

Fujimaru 2: Mash! Maximum output! Focus everything on defense!

Mash: Yes, Master! Ortinax, maximum output! Switching over to defensive mode!

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: ...I can't believe you're so collected,even after seeing that.

Ophelia: I'm impressed, Mash. You really are amazing.

Ortlinde: It's dangerous out here, Ophelia Phamrsolone.

Ortlinde: Please hurry inside the castle, while the King of Giants' attention is focused on them.

Ophelia: No, Ortlinde. You go on ahead.

Ophelia: This...this is my mess. I need to be the one who cleans it up.

Ortlinde: Ophelia!


Mash: ...Khh...I'm not...done yet...!

Mash: Ghhh...Rrraaaaaaaaah...!

Mash: (Huff, huff...! )Ah...! (Gasp...gasp...)

Mash: I've fended off the first wave of Surtr's onslaught! But I'm afraid this heat and pressure are so intense that–

Da Vinci: The Ortinax is designed to be fire-resistant. It should be able to hold up in the face of extreme heat from the natural world.

Da Vinci: But it was never designed to withstand being submerged in lava. You're lucky you're still standing.

Da Vinci: If not for all this snow and ice infused with magical energy, you'd be a goner! After all, he's–

Holmes: Indeed. He may not be quite as hot as a star, but he is quite close. And there's something else disturbing about him.

Holmes: Be wary of his Noble Phantasm! Surtr's flaming sword is a Divine Construct born from a planet!

Holmes: It prioritizes life-forms over all else! Not even a deity from the Age of Gods could survive it!

Napoleon: Ooh la la! You should be proud, you two! We're still standing tall after facing off with a being that kills entire worlds!

Napoleon: Hey, Surtr! I figured a god killer would be way more impressive, but so far, you've been a big letdown.

Napoleon: You're nothing compared to the despair my Grande Armée and I felt in winter!

Surtr: “Hehe. ”

Surtr: “Winter, you say? ”

Surtr: “All that I have for you...”

Surtr: “ fire. ”

Fou: Fo, fo fou! Kyuuu!

Mash: Here comes the second wave!

Fujimaru 1: Keep that shield up!

Fujimaru 2: Once we get through this, we'll launch a counterattack!

Mash: Yes...Master! I won't lose, even if we are up against a Divine Construct!

Mash: Position secured with a bunker bolt! Assuming full defensive–


“Out of my way. ”

Narration: A blinding light fills my vision.

Narration: Light...

Narration: No, it's not just light. It's heat...flickering heat that reduces everything it touches to ash.

Narration: If this were truly a Divine Construct, there is nothing to be done against it. At least, that's what I think.

Mash: Sen...pai...!

Mash: Senpai!

Narration: And yet, I saw her. I saw a warrior standing up to a sword forged by gods with a man-made shield.

Narration: I saw her push beyond her limits to wield that heavy shield, even as her arms and legs shook with the effort.

Narration: And I knew...I knew that it was time for me to make my stand.

Narration: My Spirit Core may be damaged, but as long as I can move,I have a chance to atone for my sins.

Awakened Man: You two.

Awakened Man: It seems this body of mine has caused you a great deal of trouble.

Awakened Man: And so, I have no choice but to use it to make amends.

Man's Voice: My ultimate technique is ready! Demonic sword of the sun,now is the time for you to wreak destruction!

Man's Voice: ...Bölverkr Gram!

Section 14: Bringing Twilight Here Once Again (Middle)

Narration: Fire walked the earth.

Narration: Here in this Lostbelt, a place nearly devoid of life,a giant strode about the land like a conquering king.

Narration: Onward he walked, never straying from his path towards the Lostbelt's fiery northern mountains.

Narration: He is the king of the giants. The king of fire.

Narration: The giants that gather at his feet are crushed beneath his heels. The ice beasts drawn to his light are melted in an instant.

Narration: ...He is a lofty king.

Narration: Though he may carry me on his shoulder, I am well aware there is no one who can truly be close to him.

Narration: There is nothing else that can view the world from his great height.

Narration: No...That may not be quite true any longer.

Narration: My Mystic Eye can see it. An enormous tree beyond the fiery mountains, stretching towards the heavens...

Narration: ...a figure just as imposing as the king of giants.

Narration: ...The Tree of Emptiness.

Ophelia: (...I can't reach Lord Kirschtaria...Surtr's magical energy must be jamming our signal...)

Ophelia: (...What would he think of this situation...? )

Ophelia: (“I see no cause for concern. I have high hopes for you, Ophelia. ” ...Yes. That's what he'd say...)

Ophelia: ...You again. I'm surprised to see you outside the castle.

Ophelia: Do I look a complete fool to you now? Yes. I'm sure I do.

Ophelia: I'd probably laugh too if I saw myself now.

???: ...

Ophelia: Huh...?

Ophelia: I'm sorry. I can't tell what you're saying.

Ophelia: I have some facility with lipreading, but it is not helpful when you speak a language I do not know.

Ophelia: ...I guess you really are from a foreign planet.

Caenis: ...Dumbass.

Caenis: Can hardly freaking believe she's a Crypter too. Not one damn bit like the other one. This one's just a stupid little girl who can't bear to let go of her ladyhood.

Caenis: She might as well be carrying a cracked jar of oil into a bonfire. It's as stupid as a maiden walking along the shore barefoot.

Caenis: Between her and the queen, there isn't a single woman here who can tell a good man when she sees one.

Caenis: ...Tch. Screw this. I can see where it's going so I'm just gonna go back to the temple. And you, fox woman?

Koyanskaya: Good question...This silvery world is pretty enough that it could have made for a nice ski resort...

Koyanskaya: ...but with that giant here, any chance at NFF Services making a profit just went up in smoke.

Koyanskaya: I think I'll be on my way shortly, too. I want to see how Ophelia's story ends before I leave.

Caenis: ...Heh. So being able to flit about as you like makes it easy for you to park your fat ass wherever you go, huh. I should've known!

Koyanskaya: Oh, would you please spare me the slanderous crudities?

Koyanskaya: I'll have you know my ass isn't the slightest bit fat! It's petite, thank you very much!

Caenis: Gotta say though, I'm disappointed in Queenie here. Can't believe she's just sitting back and letting Surtr get resurrected like this.

Caenis: Then again, she did marry Njörðr, god of the sea, in Proper Human History. Must not be as smart as she pretends.

Koyanskaya: I'm afraid you have it backwards, Caenis. Look at it this way.

Koyanskaya: Surtr was just that much of a blind spot for her. He represented something so antithetical to her worldview that she couldn't conceive of his existence.

Koyanskaya: This Lostbelt was finished the moment she lost the ability to consider that much.

Koyanskaya: Why do you think it was pruned away? It's like an insect that couldn't even tell that it was being exterminated.

Caenis: ...

Koyanskaya: That said, I doubt Her Majesty would have done anything about Surtr even if she had learned of his relationship to Sigurd.

Caenis: Oh? That mean she's just the sort to sit back and let nature take its course?

Caenis: Or does she just pity that Crypter?

Koyanskaya: Indeed. I imagine the queen feels compelled to keep herself in check, so as to be responsible with her overwhelming power.

Koyanskaya: I suppose it's an admirable enough quality,for a human...

Koyanskaya: ...but sadly, she doesn't seem to have realized that way of thinking limited what her Scandinavia could do as well.

Koyanskaya: Anyway, none of that is my business,and I'm more than happy to keep it that way☆

Koyanskaya: And that's about enough chitchat.

Koyanskaya: I've got all the goodies I came for,so I think I'll be on my merry way.

Koyanskaya: The next time we meet will be on the sea, won't it, Caenis? When we do, I expect to see some rare and valuable merch that can't be found anywhere on land♡

Caenis: Hah! As if I'd give your fat ass the time of day.

Caenis: Besides...the fact you think you're irreplaceable just means you'll be on your way out sooner than you realize.

Caenis: I wouldn't assume every Lostbelt is on your side if I were you, “pet. ”

A:Mash: (Huff...huff...huff...)

A:Mash: ......

A:Mash: ...We're...still alive?

A:Mash: Senpai!

Fujimaru 1: I'm all right.

Fujimaru 2: He deflected the fire with his demonic sword.

Sigurd: ...It seems the King of Giants has disappeared towards the northern mountains.

Sigurd: First and foremost, I'm glad to see you're all safe.

Sigurd: I think you may already know who I am, but let me introduce myself properly. I am a warrior and the wielder of the demonic sword Gram.

Sigurd: I am the son of Sigmund and Hjördís,and I have manifested in this Lostbelt as a Saber.

Sigurd: My True Name is Sigurd. I'm glad I was able to protect you.

Sigurd: I only wish I had been able to resist Surtr's control of my body more than once...

Mash: Sigurd...?

Mash: Resist...So, back then...was that you...?

Sigurd: ...Hmph. I guess this is what they call a hero's pride.

Mash: B-but...I thought you died when Surtr was freed...!

Holmes: He did. Sigurd's body would surely have fallen apart...had someone not been there to hold it together.

Holmes: Am I correct in that assumption, Ortlinde,last remaining commander of the Valkyries?

Ortlinde: Yes. I used a rune to help him. It was all so sudden that I did not expect it to work...

Ortlinde: ...but fortunately, the damage was not as extensive as I believed. It almost seemed to me as if the wounds on his body had been somehow...rewound.

Mash: (Rewound...Did Ophelia do that...? )

Ortlinde: I took advantage of that opportunity to keep his Spirit Core intact, though only just. Unfortunately, I have already exceeded my own output limits.

Ortlinde: I am afraid I will only last a few seconds more at best.

Sigurd: I was able to wield my sword one last time thanks to you. For that, you have my deepest gratitude.

Ortlinde: ...No need to thank me. I didn't help you for your sake.

Ortlinde: If you truly are a hero,then my sister.

Ortlinde: That's all I want...

Sigurd: You have my word, and once again,you have my gratitude.

Fou: Fou...

Sigurd: In Odin's name, by the runes' guidance,I ask that you awaken, my love.

Sigurd: Brynhild. My love, and my eternal executioner. Please, open your eyes.

Sigurd: I promise, I will hold your Spirit Origin together.

Sigurd: Your Spirit Core may be damaged, like mine, but I hope you will open your eyes nonetheless, even just a little.

Brynhild: You mustn't...

Brynhild: Please, don't come near me. I...I'm the one destined to kill you...

Brynhild: I can try to resist the madness, but I fear my body may move to kill you on its own...

Brynhild: So, please...Stay away...

Sigurd: Hush. Just for now.

Brynhild: ...Ah...

Brynhild: ......

Brynhild: ...I knew it...It really was someone else earlier, wasn't it, Sigurd?

Sigurd: Yes.

Brynhild: It's really you...You are...the man...the hero I fell in love with.

Sigurd: If only that were true. Then and now, I've shown myself to be too much a fool to be your hero.

Brynhild: No...No, you haven't...

Brynhild: You protected me. If it hadn't been for you,Surtr's fiery sword would have killed me...

Brynhild: You protected the shield-maiden, the emperor, and the [♂ boy /♀ girl] fighting to save humanity. You kept this world's hope alive.

Sigurd: Of course.

Sigurd: I could never have done it with what little strength I had alone, though. Her help was crucial.

Sigurd: She is also why your spear has yet to pierce me,despite our coming face-to-face.

Sigurd: It's all thanks to her godly power...

Mash: (Is he talking about–)

Fou: Fo...fou?

Woman's Voice: Indeed.

Woman's Voice: If Surtr had brought his flaming sword down in earnest, my castle, and all of Scandinavia, would have been razed to the ground.

Woman's Voice: And of course, I absolutely refuse to abide men and women killing one another.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Hm, I see you have all suffered at least some manner of injury.

Scáthach-Skadi: It has been a very, very long time since I last saw brave warriors putting themselves to the hazard in combat.

Scáthach-Skadi: This may have been inevitable with Odin's protection weakened, but my negligence is also to blame for things reaching this dire stage.

Scáthach-Skadi: Chaldeans. Sigurd. Brynhild.

Scáthach-Skadi: And you, the Archer whose name escapes me...

Scáthach-Skadi: You fought well, my children. I commend your bravery and your valor.

Scáthach-Skadi: I will not let you die just yet. You may all enter my castle. Come with me.

Napoleon: Ophelia...

Fou: Fou, fou. Faaau!

Napoleon: Yeah, I know.... It's about time I stepped up.


...With their masks gone... ...the giants began an all-out assault... destroy what little life remained...

E:Grown-Ups: I knew it! The giants are heading towards the village!

E:Grown-Ups: There were always a few stragglers wandering around the snowfields and mountains, but there's never been so many gathered around the village like this before!

D:Grown-Ups: Wh-what's going on...? I-is...Is this the Goddess's will?

Children: They're so loud! And close! A-are we gonna be okay...? They're not gonna break through the walls, are they!?

D:Grown-Ups: The envoys will protect us! The Goddess will make her glory known!

E:Grown-Ups: There's nothing to worry about, everyone! So let's just all pray together!

Gerda: ......

Gerda: (Lady Mash...[♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru...Mr. Napoleon...Fou...)

Gerda: (Wherever you are...I hope the giants haven't squished you...)

Scáthach-Skadi: ...I have sent all the envoys to the villages.

Scáthach-Skadi: Unfortunately, with their masks gone, not only do the giants no longer hear my voice, they now resonate with Surtr.

Scáthach-Skadi: If their power approaches its height during the Age of Gods, the villages' protections can only last so long.

Scáthach-Skadi: I will do my best to ensure they remain intact for at least half a day, but anything more than that will be quite difficult.

Scáthach-Skadi: Setting that aside...I never expected to see Surtr again.

Holmes: My apologies for interrupting, Your Majesty. I am Sherlock Holmes of Chaldea.

Holmes: Let me begin by offering you my most sincere thanks for treating our injured personnel.

Holmes: For that matter, it is safe to say they would not even have survived Surtr's attack had it not been for your help–

Napoleon: Right. We should all thank her for saving us. Thanks, Queenie! I'm glad we're fighting the same enemy now!

Sigurd: You have my thanks.

Brynhild: ...Thank you.

Mash: I-I, um...Thank you, Scáthach.

Mash: You even restored the Ortinax and its components...

Fou: Fou, fo fooou!

Fujimaru 1: Thanks!

Fujimaru 2: I can't believe you're being so nice to us...

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe. Pay it no mind. It is about time you all understood.

Scáthach-Skadi: I am your mother. All in Scandinavia are my children.

Scáthach-Skadi: I have decided to love you, with all that entails.

Scáthach-Skadi: As my children, all you need do is accept my grace.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Even if I am only one of the “old” gods,as that irritating Wodime would say.

Holmes: We are most grateful for your mercy. Now, would you mind if I asked you a few questions?

Holmes: I would like to gain as clear an understanding of the situation as possible in order to better determine our next course of action.

Scáthach-Skadi: Very well. Ask what you will.

Holmes: Thank you, Your Majesty.

Holmes: To begin, I presume that the fire on the northern mountains comes from Surtr?

Scáthach-Skadi: That is correct.

Holmes: Are they embers?

Mash: (Embers? )

Brynhild: (I believe he means the embers of Ragnarök...)

Napoleon: (Now I get it! )

Scáthach-Skadi: That would depend upon your perspective.

Holmes: Hmm. I see.

Fujimaru 1: Hold up!

Mash: E-excuse me! I'm sorry to interrupt,but may we ask you something, Holmes!?

Holmes: Yes, Ms. Kyrielight? [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: Does this mean...

Fujimaru 2: Holmes, did you know about Surtr all along...?

Holmes: I was, at best, twenty percent certain. Giving voice to my suspicions at that point would only cause confusion, which is why I refrained from doing so.

Holmes: But I was certain that the man who attacked the Shadow Border was not truly Sigurd, even if I was unable to convey that information at the time.

Holmes: That said...I am at fault with regard to the fire in the mountains. My apologies.

Holmes: I should have found a way to tell you about their true nature sooner.

Holmes: Or at least managed to warn you of Surtr's involvement here.

Da Vinci: Hmm, I wouldn't beat yourself up for it too badly. Under the circumstances, you were lucky to survive Sigurd–uh, the fake Sigurd's attack.

Da Vinci: Having said that, there is one thing about you that I'm not exactly pleased about.

Da Vinci: You always either say too much, or not enough.

Goredolf: H-hmm, yes, that is certainly true...Nonetheless, Technical Advisor...

Goredolf: ...much as I agree that one should strive for accuracy in the information conveyed, even in battle, we can't expect it will always be possible to do so...

Da Vinci: Tch. Well if you're gonna take Holmes's side,I guess there's nothing more to discuss.

Da Vinci: That is how you do things, right, Gordy? You don't expect people to deliver more than they're capable of, do you?

Holmes: I am deeply ashamed. I can't tell you how sorry I am for the trouble my ineptitude has caused.

Scáthach-Skadi: ......

Scáthach-Skadi: Why are you so hard on yourself,sage of Proper Human History?

Scáthach-Skadi: The fire in those mountains is a testament to my weakness.

Scáthach-Skadi: Even with the power Odin bestowed upon me...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...I have been unable to rid my land of twilight.

Holmes: Is that–

Scáthach-Skadi: It is something of a long story. Please, lend me your ears.

It was three thousand years ago...The Twilight of the Gods. Ragnarök, the battle destined to bring an end to the Age of Gods, was upon us. It should have begun and ended here just as it did in Proper Human History. But here, Surtr rampaged unchecked,and everything went awry.

Surtr. The dark one. He inherited Ymir's destructive side above all else... The first giant, whose name was all but erased from Proper Human History... As the Fiery King of Giants, he was the strongest in all Muspelheim, which also made him its ruler. He was meant to trigger Ragnarök, ending the Norse Age of Gods and paving the way for the future.

But, in this Lostbelt... ...he did not care for his destined fate. Refusing to be content with ending the Norse Age of Gods, he decided he wanted to bring about a true end...a cataclysm to end the world entirely. From there, things continued to spiral...

Next came Vánagandr Fenrisúlfr...perhaps better known as icy Fenrir, the fearsome wolf of ruin whose breath could freeze anything in its path. Though I am told it is not mentioned in either Eddas or the Völsunga Saga in Proper Human History...

...he was a great monster whose bones, muscles, and heart turned to ice after it had eaten half of Niflheim. It was Fenrir who was originally supposed to kill Odin...

...but when Fenrir let down his guard to swallow the sun, Surtr set upon him. He killed Fenrir, tore him to pieces,and consumed him. Having gained the wolf's power, Surtr went on to kill Loki, the other gods, and even the other of the giants' kings...

He then attempted to connect his true body, Muspelheim itself, to the sky, through the hole left by the sun's vacancy. By doing so, he hoped to bring twilight not only to the gods, but to the entire world. He destroyed each of the Norse world's nine realms,and attempted to burn down the very planet.

The flames were devastating. Odin and the remaining gods banded together to try and prevent this unthinkable ending...but they could not win against Surtr.

However, they were able to fight him to a stalemate. Though the gods were completely destroyed, Odin was able to seal Muspelheim away with one final rune, leaving it hanging in the sky as a false sun...

As for myself...Odin combined me with Scáthach,a woman with whom I shared a fateful bond... order to draw Surtr's eye away from the gods he meant to kill.

Now I am all that remains of the gods. Me...and the Primordial Runes that Odin entrusted to my care.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...It was horrific.

Scáthach-Skadi: Surtr's rampage left much of the land ablaze...

Scáthach-Skadi: The blood that poured onto the ground from the many wounds the gods inflicted upon him erupted into flames...and remained ablaze.

Scáthach-Skadi: Those flames consumed countless lives.

Scáthach-Skadi: It fell to me to protect what few remained.

Scáthach-Skadi: Once Ragnarök had truly concluded, there would be little point in ushering in the Age of Humanity without any humans.

Scáthach-Skadi: I turned the vast majority of my power toward extinguishing the flames that threatened to consume this world and all life on it.

Scáthach-Skadi: And so I blanketed this land in snow and ice,laden with magical energy...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...thus creating safe havens that the surviving giants could not touch in order to give humans an opportunity to live their lives.

Scáthach-Skadi: I put masks on the giants infused with my magical energy, placing them under the authority I gained from my father, the giant Þjazi.

Scáthach-Skadi: I then produced several hundred “envoys,”using the three surviving Valkyries as a base.

Ortlinde: ......

Scáthach-Skadi: With his true body sealed within the false sun,Surtr became as ineffectual as a Divine Spirit...

Scáthach-Skadi: Though he continued to exist in this world...he no longer had any power over it.

Scáthach-Skadi: Peace returned to Scandinavia, and so began a new age that was never meant to be.

Scáthach-Skadi: An age where the last god, a handful of people, a scattering of giants, and a few Valkyries all eked out a quiet coexistence.

Scáthach-Skadi: From impossible three thousand years came to pass.

Scáthach-Skadi: A great tree extended its roots down from space...and Ophelia appeared before me, calling herself a Crypter.

Scáthach-Skadi: I presume you are aware of what transpired after that.

Scáthach-Skadi: She told me she must grow that tree in order for this world to survive.

Scáthach-Skadi: She was quite helpful to me,which I did appreciate...

Mash: ...

Scáthach-Skadi: But that is beside the point.

Scáthach-Skadi: I never suspected the knight that accompanied her...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...was harboring the soul of my sworn enemy!

Holmes: I don't think she meant for this to happen. I believe this was likely a summoning accident of some kind.

Holmes: No doubt she used a summoning system identical to Chaldea's to materialize Sigurd's Heroic Spirit, and a foreign entity happened to make its way into the mix.

Da Vinci: By foreign entity, I take it you mean Surtr–Wait, I've got it. It's her Mystic Eye!

Holmes: Indeed. I imagine Surtr must have used it as a catalyst. That eye is meant for seeing possibilities, after all.

Holmes: She must have caught sight of a lost history–a pruned phenomenon that would have been impossible in Proper Human History at some point.

Scáthach-Skadi: So you say she saw Surtr's soul, of all things?

Scáthach-Skadi: Oh, Ophelia Phamrsolone. If you had to see something, why could it not have been me?

Scáthach-Skadi: How dreadfully...unfortunate...

Scáthach-Skadi: But, regardless...the fact remains that Surtr,my sworn enemy, has returned to my land.

Scáthach-Skadi: And now he will stop at nothing to finish what he began: to merge with Muspelheim, and bring about the end of all things.

Scáthach-Skadi: If nothing is done to stop him,he will burn Scandinavia to the ground.

Scáthach-Skadi: His flames will devour all life. All manner of heat will coalesce into one great fire, and reduce everything to smoke and ash.

Da Vinci: If that happens, there's no telling what effect it might have outside of this Lostbelt.

Da Vinci: You do need to go through Void Space to escape a Lostbelt, so I don't think the fire would leak beyond it...but I can't really be entirely certain.

Da Vinci: It's worth noting that he does still have our compass, too. The Paper Moon, I mean.

Holmes: ......

Holmes: ...Your Majesty, might I propose an alliance? While the enemy of my enemy may not necessarily be my friend...

Holmes: ...I do believe our chances of defeating Surtr would improve considerably by working together.

Holmes: What do you say, Scáthach-Skadi? My fair Öndurdís?

Scáthach-Skadi: Hmm...You would issue commands to a god, Heroic Spirit?

Holmes: Respectfully, of course.

Scáthach-Skadi: You are a Heroic Spirit, are you not? What a joke–a human ghost, a mere shadow, telling me what to do!

Scáthach-Skadi: Ordinarily, I would pay no mind to what a being such as you had to say...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...but in your particular case...I sense wisdom in those beautiful eyes. You remind me of Baldr, god of light.

Fou: Fwha!?

Napoleon: Wha...Seriously!?

Ortlinde: My queen! What are you saying...!?

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe. Pay it no heed. I was merely joking. This Heroic Spirit's eyes may be wise, but they are also somewhat...clouded.

Scáthach-Skadi: Even gentle Baldr would surely object to such a comparison.

Scáthach-Skadi: Nonetheless, I have made my decision, Heroic Spirit. I shall love you as–

Goredolf: Wh-where did that come from!? I didn't touch anything, Technical Advisor!

Meunière: It's not always about you, Director! Everything's working fine! It's just the emergency alert!

Napoleon: Haha. I take it you feel that too,Monsieur Vrai Demonic Sword Wielder?

Sigurd: Indeed. Something approaches from the sky. Brynhild!

Brynhild: Right...!

Da Vinci: I see it! There's a mass of magical energy flying towards us from the northern mountains! Wait...all our instruments are working now!?

Scáthach-Skadi: I simply adjusted my snow and ice to accommodate them. The nerve, interrupting a god...

Scáthach-Skadi: Dare to sully my castle any further,and even my patience will–

Fujimaru 1: Another one of those...?

Mash: Hostile detected! It's the same species we encountered on Mt. Galdhøpiggen, Master!

Fujimaru 2: Get ready to fight, Mash!

Mash: Yes, Master!

Mash: It's the same type of enemy we encountered on Mt. Galdhøpiggen!


Fujimaru 1: At least we got one of them, but it's not enough!

Fujimaru 2: They just keep on coming!

Napoleon: What the hell are these things!? And why're there so damn many!? At least they're satisfying to shoot, but still...

Sigurd: Repulsive.

Sigurd: There is something indecent about these creatures. They have no regard for their own lives.

Brynhild: Indeed. They are infused with vast amounts of magical energy. I doubt these creatures are the product of a normal ecosystem.

Mash: We have more coming in through a hole in the ceiling! There's a second...and a third...!

Holmes: They certainly aren't shaped like any ordinary creature. Could they be Phantasmals? As they have just appeared now, perhaps they were originally some sort of plant that has transformed into Surtr's kin?

Holmes: No, on second thought...Most likely...

Fou: Fo fou! Fou!

Scáthach-Skadi: How dare you!

Scáthach-Skadi: What possible reason could you seeds have for barging into my castle, knowing I have connected myself to the Tree of Emptiness!?

Da Vinci: Seeds! That's it! I'm analyzing the data now...

Da Vinci: They are seeds from the Tree of Emptiness! I can't believe it. Even the seeds are autonomous and capable of fighting!

Scáthach-Skadi: I was willing to turn a blind eye to the occasional stray seed...but how dare you damage my castle!?

Scáthach-Skadi: This transgression will not stand!

Scáthach-Skadi: I, the king of this Lostbelt, command you to die!

Scáthach-Skadi: Wha...

Sitonai: Of course they're not going to self-destruct on your command. Haven't you noticed? Your connection to them has been severed.

Sitonai: I suppose I'll have to help you out a bit,seeing as you're evidently helpless by yourself.

Mash: Illya!

Napoleon: Whoa...! Nice work! So that's what a Divine Spirit's magecraft can do, huh!

Scáthach-Skadi: ...If it isn't Freyja.

Sitonai: It's Illya, Stepmother. Didn't you just hear Mash call me that?

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe. I suppose you are right. Freyja would never allow herself to wield ice and snow as I do.

Scáthach-Skadi: Regardless, I must commend you. You did well to escape my dungeon.

Scáthach-Skadi: I should have expected as much from my daughter in Proper Human History–my companion's beloved child.

Sitonai: I could've escaped whenever. The only reason I didn't is because I knew you'd really go all-out to seal me away again, this time for good, if I did.

Sitonai: I was just passing the time when I heard a big commotion coming from inside the castle.

Sitonai: At first I thought you were fighting everyone else after finally defeating Surtr, but I was wrong.

Sitonai: What happened? I thought you were supposed to be the queen of Scandinavia. Did you not notice that Ophelia cut your connection to the Tree of Emptiness?

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Hmm.

Scáthach-Skadi: So it would seem. That certainly explains why they did not obey my order to self-destruct.

Da Vinci: So,'s Russia all over again, huh. Let me get this all straight.

Da Vinci: Up till now, the queen's been connected to the Tree of Emptiness, but with her connection severed now...

Da Vinci: ...the Crypter's trying to make Surtr the new Lostbelt king by connecting him to it instead?

Scáthach-Skadi: Madness...

Scáthach-Skadi: There is no telling what sort of disaster may ensue if Surtr were to absorb the tree's power for himself...

Holmes: Though I see you seem to have some idea, Your Majesty.

Scáthach-Skadi: Indeed, I do. To begin, he would no doubt raze Scandinavia to the ground in but a single breath.

Scáthach-Skadi: The flaming sword he a blade forged by the planet.

Scáthach-Skadi: Its sole purpose is to rend the Age of Gods wipe it from the face of the earth.

Scáthach-Skadi: Should it be successful, it will leave nothing behind. It is that powerful a weapon.

Mash: A Divine...Construct...

Da Vinci: A Noble Phantasm on par with Rhongomyniad...

Da Vinci: On top of that, he's still got the Paper Moon...which means it's even more likely his destruction could reach the outside!

Holmes: Assuming his magical energy and spiritual rank increase to that degree. Your Majesty, would you tell us where the Tree of Emptiness is located?

Scáthach-Skadi: ...The northern zone. The Tree of Emptiness took root beyond the fire mountains.

Scáthach-Skadi: Though of course, I have been using my ice and snow crystals to hide it from view.

Holmes: I see. So you were using magecraft-based optical camouflage and jamming its magical energy signature all at once.

Holmes: No wonder we were unable to locate the Tree of Emptiness once we arrived in this Lostbelt.

Holmes: Very well...Now that we have dealt with those intruders...

Holmes: ...would you be so kind as to give us an answer to my earlier proposal, Queen Scáthach-Skadi?

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Yes, I suppose I should.

Fujimaru 1: ...We'd really appreciate your help.

Scáthach-Skadi: ......

Fujimaru 2: I don't wanna rush you, Your Majesty, but we're short on time here...

Scáthach-Skadi: Yes, that is true.

Scáthach-Skadi: With things as they are,I suppose there is little alternative.

Scáthach-Skadi: Enemies of my sworn enemy, humans and Heroic Spirits of Proper Human History, I accept your proposal.

Scáthach-Skadi: Our alliance, however, will be a temporary one. Do not forget that.

Scáthach-Skadi: And one more thing: do not enter into this alliance with the intent to hold anything back at all.

Scáthach-Skadi: Remember, Surtr defeated Odin himself. You must kill a killer of gods.

Scáthach-Skadi: You should appreciate the incredible difficulty of this particular task. Is that clear?

Napoleon: You're too kind, Your Majesty! Haha, what a coup! Now my new Grande Armée's even got its own goddess and queen!

Fou: Fou! Fou foun!

Napoleon: Hahaha, I see, I see! So you're happy about this too, huh, pupper!

Napoleon: Come on, Private, celebrate with me! This is a once-in-a-lifetime chance! It's not every day you get to kill a god slayer alongside a goddess and a great hero!

Napoleon: With a lineup like this, we can't possibly lose! And a good thing, too. One Waterloo was more than enough!

Napoleon: I'm trusting you two to handle the vanguard. Sound good!?

Sigurd: Certainly. I shall do my utmost to clear a path for you.

Brynhild: As will I. We shall be your blades until our Spirit Cores and Spirit Origins finally crumble apart.

Brynhild: Rest assured, I will never fall to heartless flame.

Napoleon: Ooh la la! I'm falling in love with you all over again!

Brynhild: ...Please don't.

Brynhild: ...Really, you mustn't, Emperor. Sigurd is right here beside me...

Sigurd: I can hardly blame him, given your beauty. But I must warn you, Emperor, you will never win her heart.

Sigurd: It already belongs to me.

Brynhild: !

Napoleon: Haha, I can't compete with that. Maybe this is a sign that I oughta focus on my main squeeze.

Fou: Fo fooou! Kyaaau!

Scáthach-Skadi: Be warned. While I have used my runes to hold your Spirit Cores together, the bonds are still fragile.

Scáthach-Skadi: If you expend all of your magical energy in battle,they will once again crumble.

Mash: That's awful...

Sigurd: Please do not concern yourself with us, Lady Mash. The existence of Servants is a brief, fleeting one.

Sigurd: Once our task is done, it is our fate to disappear. Both Brynhild and I are well aware of that.

Sigurd: Let our bodies be your sword. Let our bodies be your strength.

Sigurd: [♂ Lord /♀ Lady] Fujimaru, we may not have forged official contracts with you.

Sigurd: But as our temporary Master, our blades are yours to wield for humanity as you see fit.

Fujimaru 1: ...All right.

Fujimaru 2: Thanks for helping us, you two.

Sitonai: ...It looks like we're all on the same page.

Sitonai: What a relief!

Sitonai: If you'd dug in your heels, I was worried I'd have to fight you myself, and that one or both of us might end up dead.

Sitonai: But for now...the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

Sitonai: I'm sure we can get along until this is all over. Right, Stepmother?

Scáthach-Skadi: Yes, I suppose we can.

Scáthach-Skadi: Ah...Hmm. It seems we will have a chance to test how well we can fight together sooner than expected.

Fou: Fo?

Meunière: Hostiles detected! Giants! There's a whole bunch of big ones headed your way from underground!

Napoleon: Must be the red giants that were chained up! These guys should be old hat by now, right, Private!?

Mash: I'm seeing multiple Muspels! They appear to be the ones who were being kept underneath the castle...

Mash: ...but there's something different about their heads! They're not wearing their masks anymore!

Scáthach-Skadi: Surtr's power must have broken them. Now, they will no longer heed commands from my bloodline.

Scáthach-Skadi: Hmm. Very well, then. I shall assist in dealing with them myself.

Sigurd: ...That's one down.

Sigurd: We have multiple hostiles in the area. Master, permission to engage the enemy.

Fujimaru 1: Granted!

Fujimaru 2: Let's do this quickly and get after Surtr!

Sigurd: Understood!

Napoleon: Haha! You're getting good at giving out orders, Private! Remind me to give you a medal once these guys are toast!

Brynhild: Very well...let us begin!


Holmes: The battle in the castle is over. That would seem to be the last of the giants who were dwelling in the underground.

Da Vinci: Now hurry up and get on the Border! We're waiting on the other side of the bridge!

Mash: Understood!

Fou: Fou! Fou, faaaaaauuu!

Goredolf: ......

Meunière: So I guess this means the queen was forcing the giants to obey her all this time, rather than them having submitted willingly.

Meunière: But then, if she did have them under her control...

Meunière: ...why did they go around attacking Mash and Fujimaru the moment they laid eyes on them?

Holmes: I assume those masks were only able to provide enough control for her to prevent them from attacking the villages.

Holmes: In which case, they would not stop the giants from homing in on any heat source that happened to wander into their field of view.

Meunière: Haha, gotcha. So that's why the villages are safe to live in...

Meunière: And since you don't have to leave your village to survive here, I guess it all works out. Her Majesty thought this stuff through more than I thought.

Goredolf: ......

Da Vinci: This world couldn't have lasted for three thousand years otherwise. Especially since it sounds like most of it had been burned to the ground.

Da Vinci: Keeping each village's population to a hundred people must have been a restriction intended to ensure life could continue here.

Da Vinci: I mean, the queen even made those conifer trees out of ice with her magical energy. There just isn't that much food to go around.

Da Vinci: You had to be strong to survive in Russia,but here, being strong is a death sentence.

Da Vinci: The only way to survive in this world is to stay weak and live your life inside the confines of your village.

Da Vinci: But that is neither here nor there. Come on, everyone!

Da Vinci: We've gotta get ready to welcome back Mash,Fujimaru, the Heroic Spirits,and Her Majesty herself!

Goredolf: ...M-multiple Divine Spirits, huh...

Goredolf: And all of them on a vehicle under my command...

Goredolf: Very well! Under the circumstances, I suppose there is nothing to do but accept that my report will likely fill a volume or two!

Meunière: Where'd that idea come from!? Have you got nothing but free time or something!?

Goredolf: D-don't be ridiculous. If I come to be recognized as a great author once we have restored humanity, the Musiks could end up becoming Lords!

Goredolf: After all, it's the mark of an excellent leader to plan for what happens following the battle's end.

Meunière: Now you're throwing shade at Napoleon!? There's no way you could ascend to a Lordship without the clout to go head-to-head with Policies and the aristocracy!

Meunière: Now get your head out of the clouds and your ass in a chair!

Goredolf: Wh-wh-what did you say to me!? And how do you know so much about–

Holmes: I do beg your pardon, Mr. Meunière, but would you mind hurrying along with our travel preparations?

Holmes: Though they may appear to be moving slowly, the giants' footsteps cover an astonishing amount of ground.

Da Vinci: What Holmes said! Now come on, let's pick up the pace so we can catch up quickly!

Da Vinci: ...All set? Then let's kill ourselves some giants!


Scáthach-Skadi: ...Why are we using this lump of metal for transport?

Scáthach-Skadi: That seems terribly inefficient.

Scáthach-Skadi: The Heroic Spirits would reach our destination far more quickly with a flight rune, or a speed rune.

Fou: Fou? Fo fou?

Holmes: We determined this was the best course of action under the circumstances, Your Majesty.

Da Vinci: Totally. The giants are waaay more aggressive now, AND we've got Tree of Emptiness seeds falling from the sky.

Da Vinci: Flying would make us easy targets for the giants lobbing ice boulders, and fleeing on foot would open us up to getting picked off individually.

Da Vinci: Here in the Border, it's much easier to attack and defend at once.

Da Vinci: For example, the emperor can use his cannon up on the deck to scatter any groups that come after us!

Meunière: Hm...? I just saw something new on the radar.

Goredolf: More enemies!?

Meunière: No, they're not hostile. But they are flying...Are those...birds?

Holmes: Can you put them up on the monitor?

Meunière: Of course. Here you go.

Mash: Ah, look...

Fou: Fou!

Fujimaru 1: Huh. Birds.

Fujimaru 2: Haven't seen these in a while.

Mash: Yes. Two of them again, no less.

Mash: They must be native to the fields that crop up in between the fire and ice zones...

Sitonai: Huh. They must be good friends.... Wait. Let me get a better look at them. Hmm?

Scáthach-Skadi: You two. You say you have seen these birds before?

Mash: Yes. Several times...

Scáthach-Skadi: I see...

Scáthach-Skadi: That explains it. Now it all makes sense.

Da Vinci: Something on your mind, Your Majesty?

Scáthach-Skadi: Oh, just thinking aloud, young sage.

Napoleon: Hey! Mesdames et messieurs! Can you hear me down there in that luxurious, toasty room of yours!

Napoleon: This is Napoleon, reporting in from atop the Border. I just saw some flying creatures besides those birds!

Napoleon: We've got another bunch of seeds headed our way! How far away are these things coming from, anyway!?

Meunière: I'm not seeing anything over–Whoa, scratch that! Definitely more of those seeds!

Napoleon: ...Ah crap. They're changing course to try and land on top of this thing.

Napoleon: Moving to intercept now! Anyone who wants to join me, come on up!

Fujimaru 1: Let's go take them out.

Fujimaru 2: Are you sure you're fully recovered, Mash?

Mash: Yes. I'm all set! Da Vinci already finished looking over the Ortinax!

Da Vinci: It was pretty much good as new, thanks to the queen fixing it up. Man, those Primordial Runes really are something.

Sigurd: I'll head out as well. I would like to familiarize myself with Gram's weight a bit more.

Brynhild: I'll go too.

Sigurd: No, you stay here. I can handle this alone,and I want you to rest up.

Brynhild: No, my love. Come what may, I will not leave your side.

Sigurd: ...I see. Very well then, let us go together.


Mash: ...The battle is over. It looks like that was the last of the seeds.

Mash: I never thought the giants would group together to chase after us while the Border was moving, though!

Napoleon: I wonder...were they trying to hold us back, or is it just a coincidence they showed up now? Hmm. I can't imagine they were sent here to stall us, but...

Holmes: True. I don't sense any real intelligence guiding their actions, though. It may well be that they're not here at either Surtr or the Crypter's command.

Mash: You think the seeds came out on their own? Or maybe,that the Tree of Emptiness itself scattered them?

Holmes: Yes, that is certainly a possibility. Fascinating. Perhaps these seeds are the Tree of Emptiness's way of defending itself.

Holmes: I believe you first encountered one while you were in the old Jötunheimen highlands?

Mash: That's right. It was when we were on Mt. Galdhøpiggen.

Holmes: Hmm. Perhaps it has to do with latitude? If true, that would explain why it responded automatically once you headed north...

Da Vinci: All right, come on, this isn't a game! If you're done up there, get yourselves back inside!

Da Vinci: Er, well not you, Emperor. You just stick to your guns–uh, cannon!

Napoleon: Yup, don't you worry about that. You're something else, treating me like an ordinary gunner, mademoiselle!

Sigurd: ...Brynhild. It must be hard for you to be so close to me.

Sigurd: I know my very existence wears on you.

Sigurd: Even with the queen's protection...

Brynhild: It's all right, Sigurd. Strangely enough,I am comfortably able to control myself...

Brynhild: Maybe it's because...over half my Spirit Core is already shattered.

Brynhild: I was already broken when I materialized,so perhaps, by breaking myself further...

Brynhild: ...I'm better able to resist my usual temptations.

Sigurd: How peculiar that becoming Heroic Spirits has reduced us to this.

Brynhild: Not at all, my love. I'm happy about this turn of events.

Section 15: Bringing Twilight Here Once Again (End)

Narration: I...I can't fail Lord Kirschtaria.

Narration: He trusted me with this. I can't let him down.

Narration: This time...I will not fail to live up to his wishes.

Narration: I refuse to disappoint him. So I won't. No matter what it takes.

Narration: And so...

Narration: ...even if today is Sunday, I'll endure it. I know I can.

Narration: I don't care if I even smell my own flesh beginning to burn and char.

Narration: I know I can stay my old, reticent self,never setting one foot forward.

Narration: ...At Muspelheim, in what used to be northern Sweden in the Scandinavian Peninsula...

Surtr: “There. I have connected myself to the Tree of Emptiness 1-light. ”

Surtr: “Hehe. ”

Surtr: “I could get used to this. ”

Surtr: “Look, Ophelia. ”

Surtr: “Look at what I have become. ”

Surtr: “Look at the ice that resides beside my flame. ”

Surtr: “At last, I have regained Fenrir's Authority! ”

Narration: He was right; something was different. Surtr changed from a being of pure fire, to one of fire and ice.

Narration: When I asked him how the Fiery King of Giants could possibly hold Authority over ice...

Narration: ...he told me he had long ago swallowed it.

Narration: ...First the beast of Ragnarök consumed the true sun, removing it from Scandinavia's reality...and then the giant of Ragnarök ate the beast?

Narration: That's absurd. It's not even remotely realistic.

Narration: this Lostbelt, that is the reality.

Narration: The giant of ice and fire smiles. He's pleased to have regained the power he lost.

Narration: I can see wings growing from his back. Looking past the various possibilities, I see...

Ophelia: (...invisible dragon wings...)

Ophelia: (Does this mean...he's starting to manifest Fafnir? )

Narration: Once he gains perfect form, he will no doubt complete his transformation into a winged ice and fire giant.

Narration: A hybrid of giant and dragon. I could see that making some sense.

Narration: And then, there was the flaming sword. As the embodiment of several kinds of raging Authority...

Narration: ...he once slaughtered the gods and his kin alike.

Surtr: “Now...”

Surtr: “ the time. ”

Surtr: “The true Twilight of the Gods–Götterdämmerung–will soon be upon us. ”

Narration: As he spoke his words of flame, countless masses began to writhe around at his feet.

Narration: They reminded me of children grasping for their mother...of maggots searching for light.

Narration: They were seeds. A vast number of seeds.

Narration: Yes. As if things weren't bad enough...

Narration: ...he absorbed the Tree of Emptiness,right before my eyes.

Narration: He severed the tree's connection to Scáthach-Skadi. Slowly, he sank his teeth into it, and then, in an instant...

Narration: ...he slurped it all down, root and stem.

Narration: Using the Tree of Emptiness's power, he forced a Spirit Origin Ascension upon himself and took back his past Authority.

Narration: ...It should have been impossible, yet somehow, he managed it. Was it the Paper Moon, and its ability to let one interact with Void Space?

Narration: Is that how he was able to pile impossibility atop impossibility, and consume the Tree of Emptiness?

Narration: It should not be possible,and yet there it is, plain as day.

Narration: I tried giving orders, but to no avail. The tree simply shed my control, and the queen's, of its own accord.

Ophelia: You connected yourself to the Tree of Emptiness...No, you can't even call this a connection anymore.

Ophelia: You preyed upon it.

Surtr: “Hehe. ”

Surtr: “It welcomed me. ”

Surtr: “Though I am sure the tree lacks a will of its own...”

Surtr: “...what it did possess was the same heat that lies in all life. ”

Surtr: “Yes, there was a fire deep in the heart of the Tree of Emptiness 1-light as well. ”

Ophelia: Deep in the heart...

Surtr: “It told me it did not want to be cut down. ”

Surtr: “That it wanted to live. ”

Surtr: “That it would not die. ”

Surtr: “That it would not forgive. ”

Surtr: “...Or so it kept screaming. ”

Surtr: “Hehehehe. ”

Surtr: “Life is nothing if not greedy. ”

Surtr: “Now, I shall burn everything...”

Surtr: “...starting with all life in this world. ”

Ophelia: ...Yes. Let's do it.


Words alone are meaningless. Can I no longer fulfill my responsibilities?

Narration: This Lostbelt is done for. There's no turning back...


My thoughts are a jumbled mess. It hurts to think.


Something deep in my heart is holding me tight. It wears on me. I can feel it grinding...cracking...


What...What was I thinking...?

Ophelia: Yes. We'll make a land fit for a god.

Ophelia: A new holy land, built on an earth that's been wiped perfectly clean.

Narration: If nothing else...I will never make trouble for him.


Meunière: I'm about to really kick it into gear here! If you're not a Heroic Spirit, make sure you're strapped in good and tight, or you're liable to bite your tongue off!

Goredolf: Whooooooa! We're bouncing all over the place! I know this isn't exactly the time to be obeying traffic laws, but you will NOT flip us over, Piccata!

Meunière: It's not Piccata! It's Meunière! And I'm just getting the hang of the control stick, dammit!

Meunière: ...Hey, where'd Holmes run off to, anyway!?

Da Vinci: He said he'd talked too much and went back to the recovery pod. Mr. Great Detective pretty much just woke up to assess the situation and negotiate a bit!

Scáthach-Skadi: What an astonishing man! To think he remained so calm and collected even despite his many injuries.

Scáthach-Skadi: I take it this “recovery pod” is off that way? I shall grace him with one of my healing runes.

Scáthach-Skadi: Freyja, Ortlinde, come with me.

Sitonai: Ugh, how many times do I have to tell you? My name is Illya. But, fine, I'll go with you.

Ortlinde: Understood.

Meunière: Man, imagine getting nursed back to health by an actual goddess...

Meunière: But that doesn't excuse Holmes's sheer recklessness! Not that he's the only one here guilty of that!

Goredolf: Heh, well, there's only so much a man of his meager abilities can do. Not everyone can be blessed with an abundance of talent like myself, after all.

Goredolf: And let me be clear about one thing: I am not like the rest of you. I have no craving whatsoever for adventure!

Goredolf: A good commander in chief always assesses the situation calmly, deploys the right people to the right places, and ensures his organization runs as smoothly as pthhible.

Meunière: Oh for...I TOLD you to be careful you don't bite your tongue! How are things over with you, Fujimaru!?

Fujimaru 1: (Call out to Napoleon)

Fujimaru 2: (Confirm what's happening on the deck)

Napoleon: That you, Fujimaru? Me? What else?

Napoleon: I'm still blasting away at everything following us! As you can imagine, they're not letting up!

Mash: The number of giants hasn't changed from earlier,but we're seeing more and more seeds!

Mash: In addition to the flying types, there are also some running along the ground and trying to attach themselves to the Border!

Da Vinci: I hate to keep bugging you while you're up there fighting,but this seems pretty important!

Da Vinci: You know the massive magical energy signature we saw up in the northern part of old Sweden?

Da Vinci: Well, I'm pretty sure it's Surtr, and he's heading south fast! You know what this means!?

Napoleon: ...He's coming to fight us?

Sigurd: No. He doesn't consider us a challenge worthy of meriting that approach.

Brynhild: That means he must be headed toward something else. Something that does not exist in Muspelheim...

Brynhild: For example, something that exists atop old Lake Vänern...

Napoleon: The settlement!

Da Vinci: Bingo! That's exactly where Surtr's route will take him!

Da Vinci: He's currently headed due south toward Lake Vänern,where the village is!

Napoleon: Guess that means he got himself connected to the tree then. Dammit, now we've got to reverse course!

Napoleon: Still, we can't just sit around complaining! If it gets us closer to him, well, so much the better!

Napoleon: After all, I was really hoping to avoid a situation...

Napoleon: ...where I'd have to try sniping at extreme range with my cannon because we couldn't catch him.

Napoleon: So in that respect, this has worked out nicely! Phew!

Da Vinci: I wish I knew why he was headed there, though...That flaming sword of his is absurdly powerful. He could use it anywhere, and it'd still be just as destructive.

Da Vinci: So why go so far out of his way for one village? Hmm. Does he just want to make us watch it burn?

Napoleon: I doubt he'd bother doing something like that.

Napoleon: I think Sigurd is right. Doesn't seem like he cares much about gods or Heroic Spirits.

Napoleon: I do have a thought about what he might be up to...But that's not important!

Napoleon: All that matters is that this is a stroke of luck for my Grande Armée! It's about time I got serious, anyway!

Fou: Fo fo fo, fou! Kyau!

Napoleon: Haha, thanks for cheering me on, doggo! To be fair, it's not really like I've been holding back...

Napoleon: ...but at this point, it's looking clear that I need to get really, REALLY serious.

Napoleon: Plus, I've still got my trump card! Not that I'd ever play that in the opening act before things really get going, of course!

Mash: More seeds and giants are bearing down on us! There appear to be several of them attempting to stick to the Border!

Napoleon: There you go! How do you wanna handle this, Private!?

Fujimaru 1: Let's fight them off!

Fujimaru 2: Let's push our way through!

Napoleon: D'accord! All right, gods and humans of the Grande Armée, get ready! We're gonna punch our way through these things without slowing down!


Surtr: “Hehe. ”

Surtr: “Hehe. Hehehehe. ”

Surtr: “Hahahahaha. ”

Narration: The Lostbelt is starting to fall apart. Its snow is melting, its mountains, crumbling, its seas, evaporating.

Narration: Even though he can't possibly be as tall as a mountain...every step he takes shatters peaks of ice and snow.

Narration: Perhaps it's the aftereffects of the “maggots”–the concepts of destruction squirming around his feet, but...

Narration: ...each time he advances, something shatters. With each step he takes, something burns.

Surtr: “Humans...”

Surtr: “Gods...”

Surtr: “Seas, mountains, rivers, sky,beasts, insects, flowers, plants...”

Surtr: “None of them should exist. ”

Surtr: “I will turn them all to ash! ”

Narration: He slowly raised the sword in his right hand.

Narration: The sword of the end-time. The sword that will bring about Ragnarök.

Surtr: “It may be amusing if I were to finish...”

Surtr: “...what this King of Demon Gods began. ”

Surtr: “Then again, as long as you are with me...”

Surtr: “...perhaps your Sirius Light could accomplish the same. ”

Ophelia: Was that supposed to be a joke, Surtr?

Ophelia: You are destruction itself. You don't need me.


“You're wrong. ”


“I do need you. ”

Ophelia: It doesn't matter. I'll never use my Sirius Light to help you.

Ophelia: That's the one thing I will not give you.


“Hehe. ”


“Surely you have a man you love. ”


“Surely you have friends you have bonded with. ”




“...there is nothing you can do. ”


“Not even a Holy Grail could grant your wish. ”


“Love...bonds...none of those will ever be had in this world. ”


“So burn it. ”


“Join me. Help me burn it all. ”

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: ...Yes.

Ophelia: Yes, you may be right.

Narration: My wish will never come true. My feelings will never be reciprocated.

Narration: In which case...I'll throw myself, my eye,my soul, into the fires and–

Ophelia: (I can't...)

Narration: Something deep in my heart is gripping me tight. It hurts. It hurts. It hurts...

Narration: I can feel my heart grinding...cracking...shattering.

Narration: If I give in to this pain,I'll end up just nodding in mindless agreement again.

Narration: Then, something will surely shatter and disappear. It hurts. It grinds. It cracks.

Narration: Wait a second...–

Ophelia: !

Narration: This is...a curse! These aren't just words! It's an evil dragon's curse meant to restrain the target's soul and mind!

Narration: This sensation...I recognize it...!

Ophelia: Surtr...! What did you do to me...!?

Ophelia: All this time...have you...!?


“You certainly fought tooth and nail. ”


“But it's too late. ”


“By now, at least half of your soul is melded with me. ”


“Ophelia. ”


“Come watch this planet's end with me. ”

Ophelia: Ah...Ah...!

Narration: I'm cracking. I'm shattering.

Narration: It was over all too quickly. In a flash, his flames billow up inside me.

Narration: Something deep within me burns to cinders,as my heart is engulfed in flames.

Ophelia: Yes...

Ophelia: That's...a good...idea...

Ophelia: I'll feed this world...

Ophelia: ...this the flames...

Surtr: “Ophelia. ”

Narration: The time has come. The tip of his flaming sword pierces the sky.

Narration: Our destination is now in sight: Lake Vänern, located in the southern part of old Sweden, near the border between the domains of ice and fire.

Narration: There are several villages and animal habitats located in this area.

Narration: It is rich in life, at least by this world's standards.

Narration: I see. He wants to show me.

Narration: To show me the glint of his fire as it reduces all life to ash.

Narration: I can see it. I can't help but see it. The village built atop one of the thin remaining leylines here.

Narration: As I watch...

Narration: ...a sword comprised solely of magical energy,superheated to over four million degrees Celsius...

Narration: ...descends toward the village in the blink of an eye, like a shooting star.

Narration: I saw several possibilities, but my magical energy isn't nearly strong enough to pin any of them...

Gerda: Huh...?

Gerda: Is that the sun? No, it's too bright...What is that...?

Gerda: It's beautiful...

Surtr: “Loptr Lægjarn. ”

Giant Guard:2-light

Sitonai: Berserker! That's it! Take it all on, magical energy and all!

Giant Guard:2-light

Sitonai: Thanks, Berserker!

Sitonai: Khh...! Damn...! This recoil is pretty intense! I can't hold it for long!

Sitonai: I'm not even going to get a chance to take credit for swooping in just in the nick of time!

Sitonai: Keep the backup coming, Stepmother! Ortlinde!

Ortlinde: Understood. Activating White Swan Mystic Code. Lending assistance to shadow derived from Heroic Spirit of humanity.

Scáthach-Skadi: I shall manifest multiple Divine Iron Shields at once! Surtr may have shattered them all before...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...but it should still be better than nothing!

Holmes: Using Primordial Runes to simultaneously summon a large number of Divine Iron Shields, eh. I see Scáthach-Skadi's magecraft is truly awesome indeed.

Holmes: Unfortunately, she is correct. These numbers paint a merciless picture! We are not likely to last more than a few minutes. Or perhaps even a few seconds!

Holmes: If our resistance fails,all of Scandinavia will fall!

Holmes: Sigurd! Brynhild!

Sigurd: ...I'm already using my runes as well! But they are only doing so much!

Brynhild: We are doing our best to defend and reinforce the heroic shadow and the cluster of shields. But I'm afraid...

Sigurd: We do not have anything that can turn the tide in our favor!

Da Vinci: ......

Da Vinci: ...Mash. Fujimaru. I'm afraid we need a stout defense now more than ever.

Da Vinci: I know this is a lot to ask and I wish I didn't have to ask it. But right now, you two are our only hope.

Mash: I'll go. This is what my shield was made for.

Mash: In fact, I was just thinking about how I was going to step in now that Illya's spell beat me to the punch.

Mash: Setting Ortinax output to maximum. Auto-maintenance functionality operational. Initiating Amalgam Goad's emergency expansion.

Mash: Anti-Flash defense, ready. Synching with the Border's instruments, now.

Mash: This...this is something my shield and I are meant to stop. Your orders, Master.

Fujimaru 1: (Nod wordlessly)

Fou: Fo, fooou! Fou! Kyuuu!

Goredolf: W-wait! Stop, Demi-Servant girl! You must not have seen these absurd numbers!

Goredolf: Get it together, Technical Advisor! Why didn't you tell her all she'll be doing is endangering her life!?

Goredolf: All she could do by diving in there is give our chances a miniscule boost!

Da Vinci: That's true. The odds are majorly stacked against us. Putting everything we have into a strategy with the lowest chance of success is downright insane.

Da Vinci: It was true of our battles in the Singularities,and it is true of our battles in the Lostbelts.

Da Vinci: Each and every time, we've given those two the same order: make it back alive.

Da Vinci: That's what it means to take on the entire world,in Russia as well as Scandinavia.

Da Vinci: I have no doubt we will face the same challenges in the other Lostbelts as well.

Da Vinci: Besides, they do have a chance. They've miraculously defended against large-scale attacks several times befo–

Goredolf: I'm not talking about their past accomplishments! All I'm saying is there's nothing they can do now!

Holmes: With all due respect, Mr. Goredolf, their odds of victory are not zero. Are we not in a position where our best course of action is to take our chances?

Goredolf: O-ooh, I could punch you! I won't, since I know it wouldn't do a thing, but damn if it isn't tempting!

Fujimaru 1: Mash, I'll back you up!

Fujimaru 2: Let's do this. We have to.

Mash: Yes, Master. Heading out!

Mash: We won't turn back. We CAN'T turn back.

Mash: We have a responsibility to fulfill!

Napoleon: ...Sheesh. I mean, I get why you're feeling desperate, but still.

Napoleon: Responsibility, huh. Yeah, I guess you've got a point.

Napoleon: Anyone who moves forward through the sacrifices of others must carry the responsibility for those who they left behind. Believe me; I know.

Napoleon: And you two call that “responsibility,” hm? Right. I see.

Napoleon: If you've decided you want to go out there and fulfill that responsibility, that's fine. I won't stop you.

Napoleon: But...aren't you forgetting someone? Say, Supreme Commander of the Grande Armée!?

Napoleon: How is that even possible!? I'm not exactly a wallflower, you know!

Mash: !

Fujimaru 1: Napoleon...!?

Napoleon: Yeah, that's right! Napoleon!

Napoleon: I'm! Right! Here!

Narration: I turn to see a man standing tall.

Narration: The beyond-enormous cannon he holds in his arms is aimed skyward. His smile is even more dazzling than the rays of destruction bearing down upon us.

Narration: There this good fellow stands, wreathed in flame,looming as large as any giant.

Napoleon: ...Impossible? Is that what you said? It was, wasn't it?

Napoleon: Ooh la la! That's the sort of talk that REALLY gets me fired up!

Napoleon: Private! Mash! Little mademoiselle! Old man! Here's a bit of trivia for you!

Napoleon: When people talk about something being impossible, what they're really talking about–what they're really wishing for–is hope.

Napoleon: “What if”...“If only”...That sort of thing.

Napoleon: ...I don't know what Napoleon Bonaparte was like when he was alive. I'm pretty sure I've got more than a few centimeters on him, for one thing.

Napoleon: At the height of his glory, people thought, “Maybe Emperor Napoleon could win this fight. ” And so that is what they wished for.

Napoleon: When his glory began to fade, people thought, “Maybe we'd be happier without Emperor Napoleon around. ” So they wished for that too.

Napoleon: Know what happened as a result?

Napoleon: I made both wishes come true! How do you like them apples!?

Napoleon: I granted the people's wish for me to win,and I granted the people's wish for me to fail.

Napoleon: That's what it all came down to. That's who I am.

Napoleon: The hero I am...the Heroic Spirit Napoleon that humanity a man who makes! Wishes! Happen!

Napoleon: ...Victory cannon line of fire, all set. Angle and height, all set. Victory shell, locked and loaded!

Napoleon: I'll admit, things are looking grim. We're all out of options.

Napoleon: But that's nothing new, right? Especially not here. Here, it's been that way for a long, long time.

Napoleon: This Lostbelt never had any future. Nothing in the way of hope.

Napoleon: Nobody can wish for anything here. Not humans, not gods, not even giants.

Napoleon: They don't dream about tomorrow. They don't wish for anything from their future.

Napoleon: In which case...somebody's gotta show them what it means to hope! To wish!

Napoleon: No, scratch that! Not “somebody”! It's gotta be ME!!!

Narration: The fiery good fellow assumes his gunnery stance and smiles.

Narration: This man, who proudly calls himself a hero and certainly lives up to the title, does not hesitate.

Narration: He points his cannon right between the giant king's eyes, and shouts:

Napoleon: That's why! The time has come! To fire my victory rainbow!

Napoleon: This is my final trump card! Try this on for size, you monster!

Napoleon: Arc de Triomphe de l'Étoile!!!


Surtr: “Graaaaaah! ”

Surtr: “Human Heroic Spirit! ”

Surtr: “You would block my sword!? ”

Napoleon: ...Sorry about this, Private.

Napoleon: The thing about trump cards is,they take everything you've got and then some.

Napoleon: Under the right conditions,you can pull off something incredible...

Napoleon: ...but since it comes at the cost of your Spirit Origin and Spirit Core, you can't do it twice.

Napoleon: This is just one more possibility in action.

Napoleon: At times, an unremarkable artilleryman from relatively modern times can stand beside a great hero of myth!

Napoleon: ...Yeah, that's right.

Napoleon: This is as far as I go. The rest is up to you.

Napoleon: Keep moving.

Napoleon: That's right. Move. One foot in front of the other. It's okay to hesitate. It's okay to be afraid. But don't stop.

Napoleon: Right, left, forward, hell, even backward. Keep going wherever your mind takes you.

Napoleon: But don't ever stop. Don't ever retreat. Don't ever go back.

Napoleon: Keep moving as long as you still draw breath. Wherever the living go, that's where humanity goes.

Napoleon: You're never completely out of possibilities. There's always something you can do.

Napoleon: You destroyed the bands of light that threatened to incinerate the whole world, right? No reason we can't stop a sword threatening to do the same to this one.

Napoleon: That's who we are. That's our history. Making something happen when all seems lost is what it is to be human!

Napoleon: ...That said, being human also means you will see a great many atrocities along the way.

Napoleon: Seeing all that crap, and still smiling like a damn fool, is the best part about being a foot soldier...

Ophelia: ...Ah...

Ophelia: That rainbow...It came...all the

Ophelia: Then it...popped...and disappeared...

Voice: (Haha, what'd you think? Like something out of a fireworks show, right!? )

Voice: (Did you enjoy it? )

Ophelia: Nnn...

Voice: (Oh, right. You're being eaten alive, huh. )

Voice: (Guess I'd better hurry then. I've just about disappeared myself. )

Voice: (Least I managed to get in one good speech before...Uh-oh. I'm not gonna last much longer! )

Voice: (Now I've REALLY gotta hurry. Phew. Ever forged a telepathic connection before? Not easy, I gotta say. )

Voice: (Good thing I've still got my Imperial Privilege! )

Ophelia: ...?

Voice: (You looked right at home in that castle,but Surtr's shoulder? That just doesn't suit you. )

Voice: (But, that's okay. )

Voice: (You weren't able to move on, were you? But hey, of course you couldn't follow everyone else's lead. )

Voice: (That's the whole reason I came here. )

Ophelia: ...The whole...reason...?

Voice: (I heard a voice. Your voice. )

Voice: (You wished for someone to save you. Isn't that right, Ophelia? )

Voice: (I know you think that guy you love is perfect,but he's got at least one major flaw. )

Voice: (He led you down the wrong path. He wasn't the right one to save you. )

Voice: (Me, I've always had a big soft spot for damsels in distress, but you were one of a kind. )

Voice: (You were so incredibly straitlaced, socially awkward, and diligent to a fault. Ooh la la! Talk about a woman worth landing! )

Voice: (So that's why...I really did end up falling for you. I wanted to see you smile. )

Voice: (...'Course, that's probably not gonna happen now that I'm about to fade away and all, but hey, you can't blame a guy for trying. )

Voice: (I might be a Heroic Spirit who's sworn to protect humanity...but I still wanted to grant your wish. )

Voice: (I know you kept turning me down, but at least I can take that curse with me when I go. )

Voice: (I AM all about making wishes come true, after all. )

Ophelia: Make...wishes...

Ophelia: ...come...true...


Even as my brain swims with fog,I keep turning those words over in my mind.


...Napoleon is...a Heroic Spirit who makes wishes come true.


Ah, I see. So he was trying to grant mine.


Even though I was too scared to act...he heard me crying out for help deep down in my heart, and responded...

Voice: (You could've just come out and said something, you know. )

Voice: (In that sense, my beloved Joséphine could still teach you a thing or two. )

Voice: (She was a real good woman, my Joséphine. True to herself in every way you can imagine. )

Voice: (I wish I could tell you more about her,but I'm afraid it looks like my time is up. )

Voice: (Be proud, Ophelia. Hold your head high. You're beautiful just the way you are. )

Ophelia: ...

Voice: (So it doesn't matter how you do it. You could stand up, fall in any direction, and still be beautiful. )

Voice: (So fall already! Get down from there! )

Voice: (Sitting pretty on top of the world is all well and good, but don't forget to smell the roses on the ground sometimes. )

Voice: (...It's a lot nicer down here than you might think, mademoiselle. )

Narration: Before I knew it...the fiery hand that had been gripping my soul had fallen apart.

Narration: All of a sudden, my mind starts to work again. My consciousness, my sense of self, all come back to me.

Narration: He...broke in. Somehow he forced his way into the bond meant for me and my Heroic Spirit.

Narration: He didn't even think twice about it.

Narration: I try reaching out to him through it. Once. Twice. Three times.

Narration: ...He doesn't respond. We've lost the connection.

Ophelia: ...Napoleon...

Surtr: “Where are you going? ”

Surtr: “Ophelia. ”

Ophelia: ......

Ophelia: ...You know, Saber, I have a dream of my own.

Ophelia: Or rather, I did. Though I didn't realize it until that nosy Archer pointed it out.


“...? ”

Ophelia: I...

Ophelia: I may have helped wipe away Proper Human History. But that doesn't mean I want to turn the planet into ash.

Narration: I hold my head high, as proudly as I can.

Narration: And, I fall. It could be forward, or it could be backward; I don't know, and I don't care.

Narration: My floating spell runs out,and I plummet toward the ground.

Narration: As I fall...I try taking as deep a breath as I possibly can.

Narration: ...The stench is unbearable. Like hydrogen sulfide, only worse.

Ophelia: Napoleon, you liar...


Mash: Ophelia!?

Mash: I-I, um...I'm afraid Napoleon just...

Ophelia: I know. I saw him. And I heard him too.

Ophelia: ...He got me good. Right through my heart.

Fou: Fooou...

Mash: Ophelia...

Ophelia: It was a beautiful rainbow.

Ophelia: I'm impressed. I never imagined he could show me such a possibility.

Ophelia: Now I can see the things I've been trying to avoid,including what I'm supposed to do.

Ophelia: Chaldeans in the Shadow Border. Heroic Spirits.

Ophelia: Mash.... Um...

Fujimaru 1: Fujimaru.

Ophelia: I know. Of course I know.... You're Fujimaru.

Ophelia: I didn't forget. I just...blanked for a moment...

Fou: Fou.

Ophelia: I'm sorry. I promise I won't forget it again. You're our precious kouhai, after all.

Ophelia: ...I know I have no right to ask this of you,but please...let me stand beside you. At least for now.

Ophelia: Once that monster has reformed his head,he'll start moving again!

Ophelia: Now that it's absorbed the Tree of Emptiness...its only goal is to cause as much destruction as possible.

Ophelia: The Tree of Emptiness extends its roots throughout any planet it's planted on, spreading its Lostbelt's reality.

Ophelia: So, if we don't stop Surtr...

Ophelia: ...he will cover the whole world in fire!

Goredolf: That would be horrible! far as we're concerned, you lot are mass murderers who betrayed the entire human race!

Goredolf: You are terrorists who perpetrated the greatest act of destruction humanity has ever seen!

Goredolf: S-still...these are very,VERY extenuating circumstances...H-hmm...

Holmes: This is an emergency of dire proportions, and as they say: the enemy of my enemy is my friend. These are the kinds of choices we have had to make to come this far, Director.

Holmes: I don't believe there should be any issue with forming another temporary alliance. Just look at what happened with Russia.

Da Vinci: Yeah. At this point, I'll grasp at whatever straws we can.

Goredolf: ...Oh, all right. But remember,this alliance is strictly temporary!

Goredolf: Once this is over, we're taking you into custody! Don't even think about trying to resist!

Ophelia: I know.... It's hard to believe you're from the Clock Tower.

Scáthach-Skadi: Good grief. I suppose I am in no position to judge, but you certainly are soft for a commander. I pity your subordinates.

Scáthach-Skadi: Still, I like that. I will love you as well. I do not, however, love your waistline. You should lose some weight.

Sitonai: Ooh. Does this mean you're my stepfather, mister?

Goredolf: Wha...!? I-I mean, I'm not opposed to getting married, but I haven't even thought about children...

Meunière: Is this really the time or the place for a heartwarming story of family finding each other!?

Fou: Fou! Kyau!

Goredolf: Grr, I-I know that! I was just kidding. Even I've been known to try and lighten the mood at times!

Goredolf: And in their case, they just lost one of their comrades,even if he was only a sort of familiar...

Goredolf: Still, regardless of what he was, it's always difficult to say goodbye to someone who looks and acts human...

Fujimaru 1: Thanks, Director.

Fujimaru 2: It's okay. Napoleon gave us a good send-off.

Goredolf: I, uh...I see...Well, if you're sure, that's all right then. Mm.

Holmes: Ophelia Phamrsolone. Just to confirm, you did form a Servant contract with Surtr, did you not?

Ophelia: That's right. It was a highly unusual case,but I do have a contract with him.

Holmes: What about your Command Spells?

Ophelia: I've already used all three. Still...I think it should be possible to forcibly break the contract.

Holmes: That would be a great help. If you could do that, it would render him just another Servant without a Master.

Holmes: Am I correct that he does not possess any special abilities, such as Independent Manifestation or Independent Action?

Ophelia: ...You are.

Ophelia: And he's also used his flaming sword once. That's enough magical energy to release a Noble Phantasm's True Name.

Da Vinci: Aha. And since he used that much magical energy...!

Holmes: So he is waiting for the wound Napoleon inflicted on him to heal and preparing to make his next attack, hm?

Holmes: Now I understand. That would certainly explain why there has been no second strike.

Sigurd: Then I shall engage and defeat him right away! Brynhild!

Brynhild: Yes, Sigurd. Let us go together.

Brynhild: The Emperor of France's rainbow is still there,giving us strength.

Sigurd: ...Indeed. Now is our chance to end this!

Brynhild: ...Agreed!

Fujimaru 1: Time for the final battle!

Fujimaru 2: King of Giants or not, I know we can win if we all work together!

Mash: Yes, Master! The Ortinax's output is stable,and all systems are operational. I'm ready to fight!

Fou: Fou...Fouuu! Fon!

Holmes: Ophelia, what else can you tell us about Surtr?

G:Ophelia: Nothing. I'm afraid I don't know that much about him.

G:Ophelia: So instead, I'll do whatever I can to help help the Heroic Spirits fight.

Ophelia: I'm going to sever my Servant contract.

Ophelia: The King of Giants may have tremendous magical energy,but that's true of every Heroic Spirit.

Ophelia: Once he loses his source of magical energy, he won't be able to maintain his existence as efficiently. That should buy us some time until his second attack.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Are you certain about this, Ophelia?

Scáthach-Skadi: I may have failed to notice Surtr hiding in your knight, but now that I know, I understand what you are going through.

Scáthach-Skadi: No human can summon the King of Giants. A human body is simply not capable of serving as an anchor to keep a Void being tethered to reality.

Scáthach-Skadi: A Heroic Spirit can use a human to tether themselves,but a King of Giants...

Scáthach-Skadi: I see. It's that eye of yours. Your Mystic Eye was made to serve as his anchor, was it not?

Mash: !

Mash: order to completely break your contract with him...

Mash: ...Ophelia!

Fou: Fou!!!

Ophelia: ...Hello, Fou. I haven't seen you in a long time, either.

Ophelia: I always did want to try petting you. May I?

Fou: Fo...

Ophelia: Thank you. That was all I needed. And thank you too, Mash, for worrying about me.

Ophelia: But it's all right. This is how it should be.

Ophelia: I'm doing this because it is what I choose. If nothing else, I want to live up to his expectations.

Ophelia: So I'll clean up my own mess. It's the least I can do for Lord Kirschtaria for accepting me as a Crypter...

Ophelia: No...for sacrificing himself so that I could live...! For insisting that mine was a life worth living!

Ophelia: My Mystic Eye's true worth...

Ophelia: ...doesn't lie in seeing possibilities,or even in narrowing them down!

Ophelia: No, its true as a keystone!

Ophelia: A spiritual keystone capable of keeping a Divine Spirit-class King of Giants anchored to reality!

Ophelia: Removing this eye...will break my contract with Surtr!

Mash: But, Mystic Eyes are connected directly to the mind! They need to be removed carefully, or else...

Mash: ...the surge of magical energy will end up destroying your brain! Ophelia!

Fou: Fo...!?

Goredolf: ...Ghh...!

Scáthach-Skadi: I see you are prepared to die if necessary. Right, Ophelia?

Ophelia: Right...!

Ophelia: ...!

Ophelia: Ghh...Ah...Aah...! Ah, aaaaaaaaah...!

Ophelia: ...............!

Mash: Ophelia!!!

Ophelia: Disabling Mystic Eye and its magical circuit!

Ophelia: My Mystic Eye will lose its power...and its keystone the same time!

Fujimaru 1: Please! No more...!

Fujimaru 2: Ophelia, stop! That's enough!

Ophelia: It's not over yet...!

Ophelia: Sigurd! Great hero of Scandinavia!

Ophelia: Please...!

Ophelia: Help me! Just this once!

Ophelia: I need cut Surtr down!

Da Vinci: Right! Sigurd! His contract with Ophelia is still in effect!

Sigurd: Understood, Master. Activating demonic sword...

Ophelia: Shine, shine, shine!

Ophelia: Now is the time to shine brightest...Sirius Light!

Section 16: Beyond the Gaze

Scáthach-Skadi: Go forth, valiant heroes! My runes shall give you invisible wings with which to fly!

Scáthach-Skadi: Take to the skies. Defeat the great destroyer,and extinguish his flames!

Scáthach-Skadi: Each of my villages makes use of the earth's leylines in order to maintain a hospitable environment.

Scáthach-Skadi: There is little mana left in these lands thanks to Surtr's last assault, but what is there should still prove helpful.

Scáthach-Skadi: His choice to attack this land will be his undoing! I shall draw upon the leylines' power and use it to bless you with my protection!

Scáthach-Skadi: ...The world shall finally have its revenge for what he did during Ragnarök!

Sitonai: Hmm, so that's why you're on the ground too, huh. I can see the sense in that...

Sitonai: ...but what were you thinking, asking me to help with support magecraft!? Runes don't come easy to this Spirit Origin, you know!

Scáthach-Skadi: Now, now, do not be like that, Freyja.

Scáthach-Skadi: You should be honored by this chance to touch the Primordial Runes bestowed upon me by Odin himself.

Sitonai: Oh, fine! I'll back you up with Louhi's magecraft! Just don't expect a miracle or anything!

Da Vinci: Mash! Fujimaru! Sigurd! Brynhild!

Da Vinci: I've got a good view of everything from here in the Border. So far, Surtr has yet to do much!

Da Vinci: Don't start attacking him until you're within at least a hundred meters. Got that?

Da Vinci: Speed is of the essence! You need to take out his Spirit Core before he has time to regenerate!

Mash: Got it!

Sigurd: Understood.

Mash: Maintaining flight speed of two hundred kilometers per hour. We should reach the target soon.

Mash: S-so, um...How's Ophelia doing...?

Ortlinde: Mash Kyrielight, Ophelia gave me a message for you.

Ortlinde: She says she's sorry she can't be there fighting beside you, and that she's praying for your victory.

Ortlinde: ...That is all.

Mash: ...Understood. Please tell her I hope we can talk again after the battle.

Ortlinde: I will.

Mash: Thank you!

Fujimaru 1: Mash...

Fujimaru 2: Let's do this as quickly as we can!

Mash: Thank you, Master. I'm going to increase our speed. Please hold on tight!

Sigurd: We've reached our destination. We are now approximately one hundred meters away from Surtr!

Surtr: “How impudent. ”

Surtr: “How annoying. ”

Surtr: “Fragile fools of Proper Human History...”

Surtr: “...Seeing you buzzing about like pests displeases me. ”

Surtr: “Clearly, I must remind you of your place. ”

Surtr: “Human, Heroic Spirit...You are all merely fuel for my fire. ”

Brynhild: Be wary, my love. Surtr is about to unleash his flames upon us.

Sigurd: ...I know. I will simply have to meet him with the power of the true sun!

Sigurd: Demonic sword, released. Demonic sword, complete.

Sigurd: Surtr! You may have made yourself at home in my soul, but you were unable to properly wield Gram. Now, let me show you its true power!

Sigurd: The fact that I remain under Odin's protection means that the gods' love endures!

Sigurd: Once I have cast this blade, you will know why Bölverkr means “the one to bring about disaster”!

Sigurd: My ultimate technique is ready. Demonic sword of the sun,now is the time for you to wreak destruction!

Sigurd: ...Bölverkr Gram!

Surtr: “Graaaaaaaaaaaah! ”

Surtr: “Opheliaaaaaaaaa! ”

Sigurd: Surtr! You would destroy the world merely to satiate your tremendous greed!? Then you are an evil dragon!

Sigurd: You may not have wings, but you have become Fafnir nonetheless! You are the embodiment of greed and evil!

Sigurd: And so my blade will strike you dead in a single blow, for I am a hero who made his mark on humanity by slaying a dragon!

Surtr: “Grr, graaaaaah...! ”

Surtr: “Your demonic sword cannot hope to...! ”

Da Vinci: I just got a message from Ophelia! She says Surtr's connection to the Tree of Emptiness has been severed!

Da Vinci: What's more...we've got confirmation he dropped the Paper Moon when his head was destroyed!

Holmes: Now is our chance to retrieve it! Hurry! We won't get another!

Scáthach-Skadi: I trust you can hear me, proud warriors!?

Scáthach-Skadi: Do not give Surtr time to regenerate! I expect we have no more than two minutes before he begins rebuilding his form at an alarming pace!

Holmes: So this regeneration occurs automatically in response to his Spirit Core being threatened...I see. Scáthach-Skadi certainly does know him well!

Holmes: Very well, you heard Her Majesty! Hit him with everything you've got!

Sigurd: Got it!

Brynhild: It shall be done.

Holmes: ...It's all up to you now, Ms. Kyrielight! [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru!

Mash: Ortinax, maximum output! Full functionality released! Readying bunker bolt for maximum output strikes!

Mash: Master! Mash Kyrielight, good to go!

Fujimaru 1: Ooh la la!

Mash: Ooh la la! Initiating combat!

Fujimaru 2: This is it. Don't hold anything back!

Mash: Understood.... Initiating combat!


Surtr: “How...!? ”

Surtr: “How could I...!? ”

Surtr: “Ophelia! Ophelia! Ophelia! ”

Surtr: “Graaaaaaaaahhh! ”

Surtr: “Am I truly going to die by human hands!? ”

Surtr: “How can mere humans kill fire!? ”

Surtr: “Who? Who!? WHO!? ”

Surtr: “Who dares attempt to extinguish my flames!? ”

Surtr: “It's you. ”

Surtr: “You're the key...Master of Chaldea...! ”

Surtr: “Then, if I must fall,I shall take you with me–”

Sigurd: No!

Brynhild: You will NOT!

Surtr: “GraaaAAAAAAHHH! ”

Surtr: “No, no, no, no, no! ”

Surtr: “You may have cut off my arm,but it's too late. ”

Surtr: “I've already inscribed a death rune upon [♂ him /♀ her]...”

Mash: ...Senpai!

Surtr: “Die, Master of Chaldea! ”

Fujimaru 1: (Glare at him)

Then you will witness them for yourself. You will witness the King of Giants' final, endlessly cruel smile. You will witness the darkness lurking in his eyes as he cries out in joy at your death. Strength immediately fades from your body...

Fujimaru 2: (Close your eyes and use a Command Spell)

As a Mystic from the Age of Gods,the death rune's effects are absolute. Death will come well before you can even draw upon your magical energy. Strength will immediately fade from your body...

Surtr: ...and then, a fall.

Surtr: But you will not collide with the ground. No, your body will catch fire and burn to ash.

Surtr: By the time you reach the ground,there will be nothing left of you.

Surtr: That Mash girl will cry out your name, her shield falling from her grasp in shock, but you will already be gone.

Surtr: That white beast, Fou, will yelp from his spot on the ground. And then, it will all be over.


Mash: ...!

Mash: Mas...ter...!

Mash: Master! Maaaaaaaaaster!

Surtr: “Yes. ”

Surtr: “Yes, that's what I like to hear. ”

Surtr: “Yes, life does have worth. ”

Surtr: “The screams of one crying out in despair. That is life's one redeeming quality. ”

Surtr: “Did you really think I would fall alone? ”

Surtr: “Haha, if I must die,I'll bring all of humanity down with me...”

Surtr: “...Ophelia...”

Brynhild: Oh, no you don't. You will not take anyone with you.

Brynhild: What is it you see, Surtr?

Surtr: “What!? ”

Brynhild: ...What a pleasant dream you appear to be having. I pity you, king of giants.

Mash: ...?

Mash: Wh-what's going on? As soon as...Surtr pointed his fingers towards Master...

Fujimaru 1: What the...?

Fujimaru 2: It was like he just froze in place...

Mash: Wait. I've seen this sort of thing before...Brynhild must have used her reality distortion rune!

Brynhild: Surtr is no longer strong enough to resist my runes. He must be having a lovely dream indeed.

Brynhild: No doubt it was a dream of burning someone or something to cinders.

Sigurd: Brynhild. It is time to end this.

Brynhild: Yes, my love.

Sigurd: Let's go.

Surtr: “GAAAAAAH! ”

Surtr: “This...This can't be how I die! ”

Surtr: “I was...I was going to destroy...this entire world...!!! ”

Surtr: “...Opheliaaa! ”

Narration: His death cries ring out. The Fiery King of Giants crumbles away under many watchful eyes.

Narration: One set belongs to the shield-bearing girl. Another, to the [♂ boy /♀ girl] with [♂ black /♀ red] hair.

Narration: Yet another belongs to the Dragon Slayer with the demonic sword. Another still, to the eldest Valkyrie.

Narration: There they watch in silence, floating five hundred meters above the ground, the howling wind whipping around them.

Narration: And then, a few seconds later...

Narration: ...the king of giants, along with his flaming sword, are gone.

Narration: Not a trace remains.


Surtr: ...I had lost all hope.

Surtr: ...I had tried rebelling against my fate. I failed to trigger the end-time, as I was meant to.

Surtr: ...Now, all I could do was seethe,waiting for my world to be pruned away.

Surtr: ...And then, one day...she found me.

Ophelia: “I A woman who was supposed to die in a world consumed by flame. ”

Surtr: ...She saw me, like no one else had.

Ophelia: “Who are you? ”

Surtr: ...Maybe it was no more than coincidence. Maybe she was frightened of my destructive flames.

Ophelia: “Well that's not how the legend goes. ”

Ophelia: “According to myth, your flames consume the Norse Age of Gods, but it's followed by the Age of Humanity. ”

Surtr: ...But that was the first time something...unexpected had happened in my life. Something that wasn't part of my fate.

Surtr: ...It was a genuine surprise.

Ophelia: “I see. You failed too. ”

Surtr: ...Ophelia Phamrsolone.... Such a pitiful, foolish woman.

Ophelia: “So your world's ending, too. ”

Surtr: ...The woman who taught me what it was to be surprised when I had no future. The woman who found me.

Surtr: ...The only one who ever spoke to me through my smoldering flames.

Surtr: ...Ahh.... I wish there was something I could do for you.

Surtr: ...But I'm nothing more than fire and destruction.... So then, how...?

Ophelia: “Then you and I have that in common. ”

Surtr: ...How can I ever repay you?

Ophelia: “It was nice to meet you, Fiery King of Giants. But now, I guess this is goodbye. ”


Brynhild: ...The time has come, my love.

Sigurd: Indeed. Our magical energy is all but spent. It seems this is as far as we go...

Mash: Sigurd...Brynhild...You're both...burning...

Fujimaru 1: (Stare, speechless)

Fujimaru 2: (Watch them until the very end)

Sigurd: We reached deep into Surtr's core during our attack. We knew doing so would burn us to ash.

Sigurd: You need not concern yourselves with us. I'm sorry for dragging you into this, Brynhild my love.

Brynhild: Not at all, Sigurd. I only did what I was always meant to do.

Brynhild: I am overjoyed. Never could I have imagined an opportunity to wield my spear at your side.

Brynhild: I could not ask for anything more.

Brynhild: It's like a dream come true–a dream I never dared to let myself even hope for.

Sigurd: I am ready to fall to your spear at any time.

Sigurd: Should we ever meet again,do not hesitate to kill me.

Sigurd: If that is how you express your love...then I shall survive, and prove I love you all the same.

Brynhild: ...All right.

Brynhild: Fujimaru. Mash.

Brynhild: This is where I must say goodbye. Thank you for bringing me with you on this wonderful journey.

Brynhild: If I should ever see you two again...

Brynhild: ...I hope I will be able to help you once more...

Sigurd: The next time we meet...I hope I will be able to be of help to you from the start.

Fujimaru 1: Thanks, Sigurd.

Fujimaru 2: I'm sure we'll see both of you again someday.

Ortlinde: Sister...

Mash: We are returning to base!

Mash: S-so, um...Can I ask where Ophelia is...!?

Goredolf: She's in the infirmary. My technical advisor and this Lostbelt's queen are treating her as we spea–

Mash: Thank you!

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Sirius Light.

Scáthach-Skadi: The most powerful ability given to the Crypters. It is their trump card.

Scáthach-Skadi: But the cost of using their life.

Scáthach-Skadi: And there is nothing that can be done to avoid paying that price.

Scáthach-Skadi: It matters not how many salves or medicines are administered, or how effective a Mystic Code may be at healing.

Scáthach-Skadi: Not even the Primordial Runes can help. If one makes full, unadulterated use of their power, as Brynhild did, it may be possible to gain a reprieve...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...but even that could buy her no more than a few minutes at best.

Scáthach-Skadi: Unfortunately, that means...

Ophelia: Mash...Mash?

Mash: I'm here, Ophelia. We...

Mash: We destroyed Surtr. It...

Mash: It was all you...

Ophelia: You're amazing, Mash. You actually defeated that thing.

Ophelia: I guess I can't blame Kadoc for losing to you anymore. Neither of us ever...

Ophelia: ...had a chance...

Mash: ......

Ophelia: I wish...I could see you grow even more...

Ophelia: But, I can't. I'm sorry, Mash.

Ophelia: I can't betray Lord Kirschtaria. And, I don't want to.

Mash: That's all–

Ophelia: Hey, Mash? You know what?

Ophelia: I...I may not compare to...Brynhild,and her love for Sigurd...

Ophelia: ...but...for me, and Lord Kirschtaria...

Mash: ...I know.

Mash: I admit I'm not familiar with...exactly what it is,but whenever you stare at him...

Mash: ...I could sense it was with the same sort of romantic feelings I've seen and read so much about.

Ophelia: ...It was?

Ophelia: That's strange...I didn't think...that was how I felt...

Ophelia: I'm a mage, through and through...Romance has never even crossed my mind...

Mash: Then I guess mages do fall in love, too. And there's nothing wrong with that.

Mash: At least, that's what I think.

Ophelia: I see...

Ophelia: Yes, you may be right. I see a lot more than I ever did, Mash...

Ophelia: ...You've grown up so beautifully.... I'm so happy to see that.

Ophelia: Seeing you trapped in Chaldea, looking out the window at the icy was like looking at myself.

Ophelia: ...Though of course, I doubt you're pleased by the comparison to me back when I lived in fear...

Ophelia: I always...

Ophelia: (...wanted to be your friend. )

Ophelia: ...Please. Keep going.

Ophelia: Keep moving forward, Mash Kyrielight.

Mash: Yes. I will, Ophelia. I promise. We won't stop for anything.

Mash: I'm sure we'll find a way to protect humanity,to survive, and...

Mash: save the world...

Ophelia: Yes.

Ophelia: You all just might be able to do that.

Ophelia: Though, I have to admit...I have mixed feelings about that...

Ophelia: Oh, right...

Ophelia: happen to see...Napoleon again...

Ophelia: I...doubt he'll still remember me, but...

Ophelia: ...tell him I said, “Thank you. ”

Ophelia: Tell him...I may have refused to marry him...

Ophelia: ...but the rainbow...was beautiful.

Ophelia: Please...

Napoleon: Hmm. Well this is a fine pickle!

Napoleon: So you don't believe I'm sincere about my proposal, huh. You don't believe it was love at first sight?

Napoleon: All right then, how about this, Crypter?

Napoleon: Before this Spirit Origin's time is up,I'm gonna give you the best present you'll ever get.

Napoleon: Haha! Hope you like surprises, ma chérie!

Ophelia: No thank you. I'll pass.

Ophelia: ...Besides, aren't you already married!?

Section 17: Go, Beyond the Twilight

Sitonai: And so, the Scandinavian Lostbelt was saved...

Sitonai: The Shadow Border drove off into the sunset...and they all lived happily ever after.

Sitonai: ...It would sure be nice if that's how it went,wouldn't it? Nothing is ever so easy, though.

Gerda: Um, excuse me. You're not from this village, are you?

Gerda: I's nice to meet you?

Sitonai: Oh yes, likewise. That's right; I came from outside the big gate.

Sitonai: But don't worry. There's no way the giants are getting in here.

Gerda: Oh yes. I know that!

Gerda: You wouldn't happen to be friends with Lady Mash,[♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru, Mr. Napoleon, and that beautiful envoy, would you?

Gerda: If you are, that makes you my friend, too!

Sitonai: Is that how that works? Then yes, I guess that does make us friends.

Sitonai: It's nice of you to say that. But, you should step back a bit, before you get hurt.

Gerda: Huh?

Sitonai: In fact, you should go back inside. And tell the others to do the same.

Gerda: O-okay...

Sitonai: Go on, hurry.

Gerda: A-all right. But what about you?

Sitonai: I'll be fine. Now go! Quickly!

Gerda: Okay!

Sitonai: ...Phew. There we go.

Sitonai: Now then...time for a little magecraft camouflage.

Sitonai: A great Tree of Emptiness, stretching towards space...

Sitonai: So, it altered its existence again. Hmm, or maybe it's more like it was replanted?

Sitonai: I guess Surtr didn't swallow the entire tree. Looks like he left most of its roots in the ground. And then, since the trunk wasn't completely cut down either...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Correct.

Scáthach-Skadi: That Tree of Emptiness must have connected to its roots via a spatial distortion within Surtr's body.

Scáthach-Skadi: How bizarre. Even I would struggle to accomplish such a thing.

Scáthach-Skadi: Yet for this massive tree,it is but one more means to ensure its survival.

Scáthach-Skadi: I wonder, just where do these Trees of Emptiness come from...

Scáthach-Skadi: Have you not thought the same,Chaldeans of Proper Human History?

Mash: ...We have.

Mash: There's still so much we don't know about them.

Mash: But I guess that's true for you too, Scáthach-Skadi.

Mash: You grew it despite not even knowing what it really was...all so you could cover a world without humanity.

Scáthach-Skadi: What of it?

Scáthach-Skadi: I will do whatever I must to protect my world. That should be abundantly clear by now.

Scáthach-Skadi: The same is true of you as well,Chaldeans of Proper Human History. Myself...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...I have always taken responsibility for deciding who to love, and who to kill.

Fujimaru 1: Whoa, she looks different now...

Mash: !

Scáthach-Skadi: You may put your eyes back in their sockets. This is merely the bridal gown I never had a chance to wear.

Scáthach-Skadi: Now, it is the only thing I have that comes close to battle dress.

Fujimaru 2: It's a Spirit Origin Ascension!

Mash: N-no, it's not that...

Mash: She isn't a Servant, so her body isn't made out of ether. That means...

Holmes: It's an Ascension of her very existence. So even the Heroic Spirit enhancement method Chaldea's summoning system employs is another tool she can wield freely.

Holmes: They certainly do not exaggerate when they say gods are to be feared.

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe. Feared, you say?

Scáthach-Skadi: Now that you have defeated the Fiery King of Giants,I must see you as the true monsters, Chaldeans.

Da Vinci: Really? It looked to me like we had to scrounge together every last bit of help we could find, and even then only just barely eked out a victory...

Da Vinci: ...but I guess that's not how you saw it, Scáthach-Skadi.

Mash: Da Vinci is right! We could never have hoped to defeat Surtr all on our–

Scáthach-Skadi: Exactly.

Scáthach-Skadi: That is exactly what is so frightening. You walked a razor's edge to accomplish the impossible, without even making an ally of the Counter Force.

Scáthach-Skadi: Then again, perhaps that is due to your forming so many bonds here...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...despite opportunities to do so in my land being so thin on the ground.

Holmes: ......

Holmes: ...Your Majesty.

Scáthach-Skadi: Silence. Do not weaken my resolve. Whenever you speak, you evoke images of Proper Human History's myths.

Scáthach-Skadi: But there are no such myths here. I have no such storied past.

Scáthach-Skadi: This is the only world where my Scandinavia exists. I am sure you cannot think of it as home.

Scáthach-Skadi: If you were to take up residence here...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...then I could continue to love you as your god,your queen, and your mother...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...But that can never be.

Scáthach-Skadi: You will no doubt continue your journey. You always have, and you always will.

Scáthach-Skadi: You will destroy the Lostbelts in order to restore your own world.

Scáthach-Skadi: So, say no more. It would make no difference.

Holmes: At least allow me one last word, Your Majesty.

Holmes: Everything you say is correct. You are walking the path you must follow, just as we are.

Holmes: I only wish it didn't have to come to this. That we might have walked together, rather than separately.

Scáthach-Skadi: Indeed. But that can never be.

Scáthach-Skadi: Ortlinde.

Ortlinde: You called, my Goddess and Protector?

Scáthach-Skadi: What will you do? You are free to choose whichever side you prefer.

Ortlinde: I will follow my mind wherever it takes me.

Ortlinde: Just as Brynhild, Thrúd, Hildr...

Ortlinde: ...and now, you, have said to.

Ortlinde: You are Scáthach-Skadi, the one who inherited this land from my father. I will fight by your side of my own free will.

Ortlinde: ...What is your command?

Scáthach-Skadi: Prepare for battle. We will protect this tree with our lives.

Ortlinde: Understood.

Scáthach-Skadi: Do you hear that, Chaldea? Can you hear the cries of those birds flapping their wings overhead?

Scáthach-Skadi: Should you defeat me and cut down the tree...I shall tell you what they truly are.

Goredolf: ...N-nn. I don't suppose there's any way we can avoid this battle?

Da Vinci: Nope. Not a chance. And this won't be the last time this sort of thing happens.

Da Vinci: It's just like she said. We have to take responsibility for what we're doing.

Da Vinci: You understand that, right, Mash? Fujimaru?

Fujimaru 1: Yeah. I do...

Fujimaru 2: Yeah. I knew that going in.

Mash: Indeed...

Scáthach-Skadi: Let me ask you this:

Scáthach-Skadi: How many humans live in your Proper Human History? Several million? Tens of millions? Hundreds...?

Scáthach-Skadi: Then again, I suppose if one includes the lives of flora and fauna, they would be innumerable.

Scáthach-Skadi: I see. So that is the responsibility you shoulder as you seek to end my Lostbelt. Hmm.

Mash: ...?

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Very well.

Scáthach-Skadi: Then for the love I bear for my ten thousand subjects...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...I will take those millions...billions...That unfathomably vast number of lives...with my own hands!

Scáthach-Skadi: I will NOT let this miracle wither away!

Holmes: Miracle...I see. So that's how you think of this land.

Holmes: For you, this Lostbelt, and the approximately three thousand years it has known peace, is truly a miracle, isn't it, Your Majesty?

Holmes: Then you know. You've known all along.

Holmes: You are fully aware that this Lostbelt's existence is both abnormal and unnatural.

Holmes: What's more, you knew so well before the Crypter came along and informed you of Proper Human History.

Mash: You knew...? Even before you knew about Proper Human History!?

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe.... It seems I cannot put anything past you, wise sage.

Scáthach-Skadi: Perhaps those piercing eyes of yours in fact surpass Odin's? Mystic Eyes, perchance? ...No, that is not it. They merely reflect your wisdom born of human history's cumulative accomplishments.

Scáthach-Skadi: Yes, you are right. I knew everything.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...It was supposed to be pruned away.

Scáthach-Skadi: My Scandinavia, my world, the path my people have walked,was destined to disappear from human history.

Scáthach-Skadi: We were not to perish in a Ragnarok gone mad. We had already survived those days of flame.

Scáthach-Skadi: Those days may have ended once the gods had sacrificed themselves to transform Surtr into the false sun...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...but we precious few lives that remained found ourselves in a world that had lost far too much.

Scáthach-Skadi: Even so, we did our best with what we had. After much struggle and suffering, we began to build a new life.

Scáthach-Skadi: And then, human history–humanity–erased us.

Scáthach-Skadi: It had all been for nothing.

Scáthach-Skadi: My love, my hopes, my wishes,my dreams...all of them were gone.

Scáthach-Skadi: All in less than half a year after Surtr had been sealed away, and his broken Ragnarök stopped...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...humanity decided my land where humans and gods live together did not deserve to exist.

Scáthach-Skadi: As far as human history was concerned, the path we were taking after surviving the flames was evil.

Scáthach-Skadi: ...But then, something unexpected happened.

Scáthach-Skadi: An impossible three thousand years came and went.

Scáthach-Skadi: I do not know whether the Tree of Emptiness was responsible for that paradox...that miracle.

Scáthach-Skadi: But what I do that my land was reborn on this planet, in the modern day!

Scáthach-Skadi: It was a feat greater than any Authority could accomplish! A miracle neither I nor Odin could achieve!

Scáthach-Skadi: And so I cannot–I will not let that miracle fade away!

Scáthach-Skadi: If I must take unfathomable numbers of lives to preserve it, then so be it! I shall consider each and every one my sworn enemy!

Holmes: ...Your Majesty.

Scáthach-Skadi: Silence! No more talk! Consider this lament my declaration of war!

Scáthach-Skadi: Three thousand years, and still I remain powerless to support more villages beyond those created in that first six months...

Scáthach-Skadi: All this time, and I have still only saved a hundred villages, a mere ten thousand humans!

Scáthach-Skadi: I cannot even let any of them live to old age!

Scáthach-Skadi: For my love and snow can only extend my Authority to the point before the first signs of spring arrive!

Mash: ...!

Scáthach-Skadi: Haha. Indeed, that Archer spoke the truth.

Scáthach-Skadi: This Lostbelt has no future. No tomorrow.

Scáthach-Skadi: Though it may be peaceful,free of conflict and evil...

Scáthach-Skadi: will never be any more than that. It has no power to change, to develop.

Scáthach-Skadi: No doubt this pathetic state of affairs will continue for thousands upon thousands of years.

Mash: ...

Scáthach-Skadi: My not enough...Spring will never come...Life will never flourish...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...But I will not give up! I will never simply resign myself to this fate!

Scáthach-Skadi: For three millennia, I have devoted my power to suppressing Surtr's fires!

Scáthach-Skadi: But now! Now that Surtr is gone from this Lostbelt...

Scáthach-Skadi: power should suffice to bring hope to my land. So I withdraw my love, and instead offer you death!

Fou: ...Fo, fou!

Scáthach-Skadi: If you would save your humanity, then kill me! Kill me, and cast us aside, Chaldeans of Proper Human History!

Fujimaru 1: (...I wish it didn't have to be this way, but...)

Fujimaru 2: (...I don't want to defeat you...but I will...! )

Mash: Raising Ortinax output. Switching to combat mode. Bunker bolt, standing by!

Mash: Preparing to engage this Lostbelt's king, Scáthach-Skadi, and commencing demolition of the Tree of Emptiness!


Scáthach-Skadi: Well done...

Scáthach-Skadi: To think I would lose so...decisively...

Scáthach-Skadi: I could not even protect Ortlinde...

Scáthach-Skadi: Ahh. I knew it. I was far too weak to serve as queen.

Holmes: ...I don't understand.

Holmes: Why didn't you tell us you had barely recovered any magical energy after our battle with Surtr?

Holmes: Why did you fight us while you were so weakened,and we were completely healed?

Mash: What about the death rune...?

Mash: You could have inscribed the same spell into us that Surtr used, but...

Scáthach-Skadi: My pride would not permit it. I am obligated to protect this land and all the lives that dwell within.

Scáthach-Skadi: I must heal the wounds Surtr inflicted upon this land. I must repair the village he destroyed, and treat those whom he injured.

Scáthach-Skadi: I never had much magical energy to spare...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...for my battle with you. Hehe.

Scáthach-Skadi: Ahh, there they are. Look up at the sky,and I shall tell you those birds' names.

Scáthach-Skadi: They are the holy ravens who served Odin.

Goredolf: Odin's familiars!? Th-then, they must be Huginn and Muninn, two of the greatest familiars to ever exist!

Goredolf: They're legendary Divine Beasts named after thought and memory who were said to look upon the whole world every morning...

Scáthach-Skadi: Cursed Odin...He may have kept giving me chances,right to the end...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...but it seems he had Huginn and Muninn guide all of you as well. Haha...How him...

Scáthach-Skadi: He never was...willing to guide me...


Narration: The Tree of Emptiness began to collapse...

Narration: Ordinarily, it would not have fallen so easily. In fact, it should have been impossible to destroy without the help of a particular external factor.

Narration: At least, that was the queen's understanding.

Narration: And it was, falling apart. Vanishing into the very air.

Narration: Perhaps it had grown brittle by virtue of Surtr having assimilated it.

Narration: Whatever the reason may be,the Tree of Emptiness was disappearing...

Narration: Soon, this Lostbelt would cease to be,even if no one would be present to see it happen.

Narration: Most of the queen's spells hiding the tree were still in effect. No human would see its destruction...

Narration: ...but they would hear a tremendous sound split the air. They would feel a sudden tremor shaking all of Scandinavia.

Narration: The cacophony of a towering colossus crumbling to the ground...The shaking at the loss of the very foundations of the world...

Narration: Only those who survived Surtr's destruction were privy to these awful phenomena.

Narration: The animals who lived in the rifts between fire and ice...the giants who still remained...

Narration: ...and the roughly ten thousand humans...all closed their eyes, and felt the sensations wash over them.

Narration: This strange sound and shaking must be a sign that something is about to happen. But, what could it be...?

Scáthach-Skadi: ...Allow me to offer you one last gift, Chaldeans.

Scáthach-Skadi: I shall tell you the name of the Tree of Emptiness that was meant to take root in my Lostbelt.

Scáthach-Skadi: It is called...Sombrero.

Scáthach-Skadi: Hehe. As one who lived through the Age of Gods, that name means nothing to me...but perhaps it will mean something to you, stargazers of Proper Human History.

Scáthach-Skadi: Now go, Chaldeans.

Scáthach-Skadi: As you have defeated us...

Scáthach-Skadi: must cross the ocean of dead ice and flame,and the countless corpses of our hopes and dreams...

Scáthach-Skadi: ...and be on your way.

Gerda: Okay, so, I'm not too sure what's going on...but I think we'll all do just what we're told...

Gerda: You see, this morning,an envoy gave us a message from the Goddess.

Gerda: She said we should all go back to our homes and go to sleep, even though it's not nighttime.

Gerda: And once we do, we'll never wake up again.

Gerda: She said not to be afraid. It's just what we have to do to fix all the damage that huge giant caused.

Gerda: And if the Goddess said so, it must be true.

Gerda: Still...

Gerda: When I think about Lady Mash,and [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru, and Mr. Napoleon...

Gerda: ...and the beautiful envoy...and Mr. Chub...and Fou...and how...

Gerda: ...well...

Gerda: Once I fall asleep,I'll never get to see them again, right?

Gerda: Thinking about that makes me...

Gerda: Makes me...

Gerda: ...

Gerda: ...I don't know.

Gerda: It's so strange...I don't know what to call it...

Gerda: It's like...there's something squeezing my heart...and it makes me want to cry.

Gerda: Isn't that weird? I'm not even hurt anywhere.

Sitonai: There they go. Goodbye, Shadow Border.

Sitonai: Safe travels. I hope fortune is kind wherever you go.

Sitonai: I'm a Pseudo-Servant using a human body as a host. I shouldn't be able to disappear when this Lostbelt goes away...

Sitonai: ......

Sitonai: I guess this is Stepmother's doing.

Sitonai: How strange. I already miss her a bit, even though she's not my real mother. Maybe Freyja's influence.

Sitonai: Then again, she wasn't a bad person...I wish I could've talked with her a little more.

Sitonai: Perhaps that's why I miss her. Yeah, that must be it.

Sitonai: All of you Valkyries did great delivering Stepmother's last commandment. Thanks for all your help.

Sitonai: I know your master is gone...but I hope you can rest easy now. See you later.


A newly ordained day. A newly ordained time.

After the envoy had delivered the Goddess's newest commandment, quiet spread throughout the settlement.

Nobody was to go outside. Everyone was to stay in their homes and beds. They were told not to even open their windows. Make your bedrooms as dark as possible, close your eyes,and go to sleep.

It was the strangest commandment anyone had ever heard.

But most people went along with it, since it was the word of the Goddess. In fact, here in Village 23... ...there was only one person not sleeping peacefully inside her home. She wondered what might happen to her for not obeying the commandment. Would she be cast outside the village? Squished by giants? She certainly didn't want that.

Still...she couldn't help it. She wasn't able to fall asleep, and she couldn't shake the strange and growing sense of foreboding from her thoughts.

...So she decided to go outside.

Her heart started to pound with trepidation. What if... What if she'd get to see her new friends again? With high hopes, the girl opened her door and stepped outside.

“Huh...? ”

There was no one there...

Her new friends, who had survived the wilds outside the village and even battled envoys, were not present. There was no one. Anywhere.

She was crestfallen. As she thought back to her new friends, she remembered their animal companion. That cute, fluffy creature that used to hop around everywhere it went. Was it a dog? A horse? It wasn't much, but thinking about it helped cheer her up. So she decided to try copying it–to hop around the way it used to.


“Hop! ”

She jumped lightly towards the sky. That same moment... ...a gust of wind blew through the village,warm and gentle as a spring breeze. It may have been the same wind blowing across the world's bleached landscape, or it may have been a wind that used to travel throughout Proper Human History. And then...the girl was gone.

She vanished as though carried off by that wind,before her feet could even touch the ground again. In the blink of an eye, she was somewhere far,far away, along with the rest of that Scandinavia. All that remained in the wind...was her smile...


Sometime in 2017.

Ophelia: Um...

Ophelia: I just wanted to introduce myself again. Your name's Mash Kyrielight, right?

Ophelia: Sorry to just barge in on you like this, but we never really got a chance to talk during the meeting.

Mash: That's all right. It's nice to meet you.

Ophelia: You too. My name's Ophelia Phamrsolone.

Mash: I remember. You're from the Clock Tower's Evocation Department.

Ophelia: Yes. That's my official department, anyway.

Ophelia: I guess it would be weird to say I'm kind of relieved, huh?

Mash: ?

Ophelia: I mean, there just aren't many women on Team A, right? I don't have a problem with men or anything...

Ophelia: ...but it's still a little nerve-racking to suddenly be surrounded by them when you're eating lunch...

Mash: I...see?

Ophelia: I'm sorry. I guess I rambled a little bit there, didn't I?

Ophelia: Would you, um...

Ophelia: Would you like to eat with us? Oh, and by us, I mean me and Pepe.

Mash: ...Sure. If you don't mind my being there,I'd love to join you.


Meunière: We're just about to leave Scandinavia behind entirely!

Meunière: Looking at our current coordinates, we just passed the Sogne Fjord on the west of the Scandinavian Peninsula!

Meunière: There should only be about twenty kilometers until we reach the North Sea! You sure about this!? I'm still not seeing any water at all!

Goredolf: ...

Mash: ...

Holmes: ...

Fujimaru 1: ...

Meunière: Gaaaaaah! Why've you all gotta be such downers!? I've seen more cheer at a funeral!

Meunière: Look, I know how you all feel, okay? I'm just as bummed as the rest of you.

Meunière: But that doesn't change the fact that SOMEONE'S still gotta step up and steer this thing! Now come on, Director! Are we going to the North Sea, or not!?

Goredolf: Er...right. The North Sea. Yes, that will do.

Goredolf: ...(Sigh)

Goredolf: I hate to leave like this again...but what could I have said, even had I seen her before we left...?

Goredolf: I could not possibly wish her a long, happy life...But still, as an adult, I can't help but feel I should have said something to her...

Goredolf: Those flowers she gave me...her entire village...They're all going to disappear, just like Russia, aren't they...

Fujimaru 1: ...Yes. They are.

Fujimaru 2: ...

Mash: ...

Holmes: That is true. We know now that this is what it is to fight these Lostbelts.

Holmes: They are hypothetical worlds that came to sudden ends after human history itself deemed them unnecessary.

Holmes: Neither their inhabitants nor their civilizations did anything wrong. Their world simply differed from ours and eventually reached an impasse.

Holmes: I would even say we were fortunate that Russia and Scandinavia were the first Lostbelts we encountered.

Holmes: Why, you ask? Because the people who dwelled there were friendly to us, of course.

Holmes: That alone has been a tremendous boon to our efforts. But, we cannot expect that good fortune to continue.

Holmes: It is quite possible that in the next Lostbelt we encounter, we will find ourselves up against every living thing that inhabits it. We must be wary of such a worst-case scenar–

Goredolf: Grrr, it isn't the future that has me depressed! Have you no heart, man!?

Goredolf: Even I understand what it is we need to do, and that no amount of wringing our hands will change that!

Goredolf: I know this is simply a competition for survival, where saving one side inevitably means destroying the other!

Goredolf: So...I see no harm in looking back on them a bit. After all, they don't have that luxury now.

Goredolf: I may be a cold-blooded aristocrat and the embodiment of elitism itself...

Goredolf: ...but even I can't easily forget that we just wiped an innocent young girl out of existence...

Mash: Mr. Goredolf...

Meunière: ...I hate to say it, but he's right.

Meunière: Maybe we just shouldn't get involved with these Lostbelt people at all if it's just going to turn out to be so depressing every time.

Fujimaru 1: ...No. That would be–

Da Vinci: The coward's way out. That is what you were going to say, isn't it, Fujimaru?

Da Vinci: Don't go there, Meunière. Just because it's easier to kill someone you don't know doesn't make it right.

Da Vinci: That's just avoidance. All you're doing is choosing not to face an unpleasant truth. That's not how war is meant to be fought.

Da Vinci: You should only fight those you know well, otherwise you risk your moral compass losing its center.

Da Vinci: Of course, everyone has their own way of facing their responsibility. In Fujimaru's case...

Da Vinci: ...I'd say [♂ he's /♀ she's] the type to try and get to know [♂ his /♀ her] opponent as well as possible, so that [♂ he /♀ she] never forgets them.

Meunière: So pretending not to see them is actually even harder than facing them directly...or rather, the price of doing so is your own humanity, huh.

Meunière: Wait. Da Vinci!? What're you doing!? Don't you need to be operating the Border!? Or preparing a Zero Sail!?

Da Vinci: Oh relax. Now that the Tree of Emptiness has been destroyed, the storm wall around this Lostbelt is gone.

Da Vinci: We won't need to go Zero Sailing anytime soon.

Da Vinci: Anyway, last we checked, the Wandering Sea should be somewhere in the North Sea, far from the coast. So let's just enjoy this road trip until–

Da Vinci: Hm? What's up with the alarm, Meunière?

Meunière: Why're you asking me? If you don't know,how could you possibly expect me to–Wha...!?

Meunière: The hell is this!? A spatial fault three hundred meters up ahead! It's showing up as blue on the map!

Meunière: It''s the ocean! We're heading straight for the ocean!

Mash: Um...Mr. Meunière? I'm not really seeing what the big fuss is about...

Meunière: Believe me, I wish I were kidding! Aw crap, I can't hit the brakes in time. Everyone, brace for impact!

Meunière: Three, two, one...Get ready for a drop!

Goredolf: Ow, ow, ow. My aching back! It hasn't hurt this bad since my brakes failed on that hill!

Goredolf: What's going on here, Moony!? That felt like at least a ten-meter drop!

Fujimaru 1: ...Um, Director?

Goredolf: Not now, [♂ boy /♀ girl]! Hurry up and sit down before another impact throws us for–

Fujimaru 1: The window. Look out the window...!

Goredolf: Out the window...? What are you talking aboooOOOUT!?

Goredolf: D-d-did we drive into a whole other world when I wasn't looking!? It was nothing but clear skies as far as the eye could see just a moment ago!

Goredolf: Technical Advisor! Da Vinci!

Goredolf: J-j-just to be sure, the Border can navigate a real sea just as well as it can the Void Sea, right!?

Goredolf: You did design it for every conceivable scenario, didn't you? A stormy sea should be nothing compared to Void Space, right?

Goredolf: While we're on the subject, I have something of an announcement to make: I can't swim!

Da Vinci: Okay, look, Gordy, traveling through Void Space and traveling through real water are completely different tasks that require completely different functionality.

Da Vinci: The Border might be able to get through the Strait of Dover, but it was not designed to weather this!

Da Vinci: Now, I've got an announcement of my own: I estimate the Border has about an hour until it sinks!

Da Vinci: So back the hell up and get us back on land! NOW, Meunière! Come on, hurry!

Da Vinci: Once we reach the coast, we can waterproof the Border better and wait until this storm dies down!

Meunière: Yeah...just one problem! There's no land to go back to! We're smack in the middle of the North Sea!

Mash: Then...does that mean we're all going to end up fish food...?

Holmes: Da Vinci, can we still initiate a Zero Sail here? Surely that must be preferable to sinking to our deaths?

Da Vinci: We can't! The formulas won't be stable enough on water! We'd have to rewrite the software from scratch!

Da Vinci: Ah dammit, we must be leaking somewhere! Hello, Tomlin? Are you in the kitchen right now?

Da Vinci: Check the storage room, quickly! I think we've got a leak in there! Tell the rest of the staff, too!

Da Vinci: Well...shit. Guys, there's no easy way to say this, so I'm just gonna say it.

Da Vinci: Now don't freak out on me,'s looking like we're all gonna die.

Da Vinci: And just when we'd proved we were badass enough to defeat Ivan the Terrible and Scáthach the goddess, too. D'oh☆

Fujimaru 1: Da Vinciii!

Fujimaru 2: Oh crap. Take it easy, Mash! Don't freak out on us, okay!?

Goredolf: You know, I feel like a spot of breakfast. I think I'll go fry up some seriously thick cut bacon right now. Mmm, deeelish.

Fou: Fou, fou!

Holmes: ...Hang on. We're getting a call!

Holmes: Go ahead and open up a line, Mr. Meunière! And hurry! Da Vinci's no use to us right now!

Meunière: R-right. On it!

???: CQ, CQ. This is the Wandering Sea's dock. Do you read me?

???: That vessel...that would be Chaldea's ship, right? No, wait, not a ship...Oh, I see! A tank!

???: Rational, yes, very rational! A ship is unnecessary for a Zero Sail. But, I say, you have no sense for design!

???: It might as well be a large metal coffin! Nothing charming there at all!

???: Be honest: you would never have made it back without my Paper Moon, would you?

???: Still, a fine job making it all the way here! Everything is proceeding within my calculations!

Meunière: It's coming from the Wandering Sea! But, WHERE!?

???: Where? Right in front of you! ...Oh, hang on, let me clear the fog. It should be easier to see then.

???: Proceed on your current course, though you may want to reduce your speed. And be sure to give thanks.

???: All right...this will be the first time in over two thousand years that this island has revealed itself on a day other than December 31!

Meunière: An island...!? And it was this close all along!? But I'm still not seeing anything on radar!

Da Vinci: So it would seem...This is a Folklore Defense.

Da Vinci: An imaginary world of the fairies, where fantasy is made manifest. A world that stands apart from our own.

Da Vinci: In the modern day, it's a Mystic among Mystics,said to only be possessed by Ploy Kickshaws.

???: Oh? Is that the voice of a professor type on the same level as me I hear? Well that is a welcome development. We will get on just fine!

???: Welcome to the primordial magecraft workshop: The Baldanders of the Wandering Sea!

???: My name is Sion. Sion Eltnam Sokaris.

???: I am a Spiritron hacker who escaped to the Wandering Sea when I predicted that the world was about to end. I have been waiting for you.

???: Being the Atlas Institute's last remaining member, the Wandering Sea higher-ups entrusted me with the project of righting this bleached Earth problem.