Cosmos in the Lostbelt 4: Samsara of Genesis and Terminus - Yugakshetra

intro. 4

On December 31, 2019, the entirety of human history was erased in a single stroke. Every trace of civilization was wiped out, and in its place, the earth was left a bleached wasteland. No one knew why or how it was done. All that was clear is that humanity had been utterly defeated.

No...It's worse than that. We never even had a chance to fight back. Our destroyer was known as the Foreign God, a being from a distant star wielding unfathomable power.

Kirschtaria: ...anity. We have a message for all of humanity.

Kirschtaria: This planet will soon be reborn as an old, brand-new world.

Kirschtaria: Human civilization was a mistake. The path of our growth was incorrect.

Kirschtaria: And so I have made my decision. I will revolt against all of human history–Proper Human History.

Kirschtaria: We are about to fill this world with inhuman Mystic secrets. We will restore the Age of Gods.

Kirschtaria: To that end, the gods have descended from a far-off galaxy, and in their wisdom, they have used seven seeds to select new leaders.

Kirschtaria: These leaders will remake this planet as they see fit. And the one who reign supreme shall be given the right to renew the world itself.

Kirschtaria: The life-forms from Proper Human History will not be permitted to take part in this war, or even to view it from the sidelines.

Kirschtaria: Trees of creation have sprung up all across the land. Now, all of the old humanity's endeavors will be set aside, frozen.

Kirschtaria: My name is Wodime. Kirschtaria Wodime.

Kirschtaria: On behalf of the seven Crypters, I have a message for those of you who escaped from Chaldea.

Kirschtaria: No, rather, I have a message for the scant few remnants of the human race: WE will be the inheritors of this planet's history.

Crypters. The seven Masters of the old Chaldea who were supposed to save the world.

Daybit Sem Void. Ophelia Phamrsolone.

Beryl Gut. Kadoc Zemlupus.

Akuta Hinako. Scandinavia Peperoncino.

And their supposed leader, the foremost disciple of Chaldea's first director...Kirschtaria Wodime.

No one had even been certain they were still alive. But no sooner had they awoken than they turned on the world they had been meant to protect. Chosen by the Foreign God, the seven Crypters were entrusted with caring for the Trees of Emptiness... ...the enormous trees that appeared around the world after its scouring. Each Tree of Emptiness was followed by a Lostbelt; a hypothetical history that had been pruned from the chronicle of humanity.

There was the Russian Lostbelt, where humans had fused with beasts in order to survive in an ultracold environment. There was the Scandinavian Lostbelt, where a Ragnarök gone awry had robbed the world of any possible future. And there was the Chinese Lostbelt, where a single ruler who achieved immortality carried the rest of mankind on their shoulders. These and other Lostbelts were to grow their territory, with the one emerging triumphant becoming Earth's official history.

As far as the Crypters were concerned, their only enemy–or rather, competition, was the other Crypters competing to establish their Lostbelt's dominance. The few remnants of the old humanity–Chaldea, were no more than a tiny bump in their road. Before the world was wiped clean, the Crypters had mounted an attack on the Chaldea Security Organization's headquarters, and destroyed them.

Chaldeas was frozen solid, and Rayshifting, the only possible means by which humanity could have prevented the great reset, was lost. But...though many lives were lost, and the survivors were forced to make a desperate retreat, the last Master of Chaldea still lived.

Thanks to the Shadow Border, the All-Terrain Void-Transporter that had been developed in secret... ...and its cross-dimensional Zero Sail traversal method, the survivors successfully escaped into Void Space.

Having evaded the great reset, they emerged in the Russian Lostbelt a few months later, in April of 2020. They went on to defeat Kadoc Zemlupus, the Crypter assigned to the Russian Lostbelt... ...overthrow the Lostbelt's king, Ivan the Terrible, and cut down its Tree of Emptiness.

Then, after another battle in the Scandinavian Lostbelt, they arrived at the Wandering Sea, a workshop that was home to the only other survivors of humanity. Now, they have gained a new ally in Sion Eltnam, an alchemist from the Atlas Institute left in charge of the Wandering Sea... ...and are setting out on the next step of their quest to defeat the Crypters, and the Foreign God...


B:Sion: So, how was that recap? Did I do a good job jogging your memory!?

Fujimaru 1: Like it was yesterday!

Mash: Yes! You glossed over a number of things, but that's basically the long and short of it!

Fujimaru 2: Huh? What about the Chinese Lostbelt, or the other things that happened!?

B:Sion: Oh, you do not need me to tell you about those. They just happened recently, after all.

B:Sion: I will save the recap on Goredolf's grand adventure for another time!

B:Sion: Anyway, it has now been a few months since you returned from the Chinese Lostbelt.

I:Sion: Once you are all rested up, I am going to have you head out on your next Order, Lostbelt No. 4...

I:Sion: ...where you will investigate a strange Lostbelt that has been repeatedly expanding and contracting.

I:Sion: Moreover, the Captain will be joining in on your adventure into a dazzling realm of Indian mythology!

A:Sion: Of course, if I had known then it would take this long to get ready, I would not have hyped it up quite so much.

A:Sion: My original calculations had me modifying–er, convincing Captain a bit sooner than this...

Da Vinci: Hey, it wasn't your fault we all got caught up in that...ordeal. Honestly, I'm just glad we were able to verify that we can actually Rayshift again.

Holmes: Indeed. We now know for certain that we are able to Rayshift from the Wandering Sea as well as from Chaldea.

Holmes: While the ability to observe time and space outside the Lostbelts may not help in our efforts to remove them, having more options available can only be a good thing.

Holmes: Though that's not to say some of us aren't a bit worse for wear. I say, Director Goredolf, has your weight returned to normal yet?

Goredolf: It has, not that I had any say in the matter! I still don't think it's right that I was the only one who didn't get to go on break!

Goredolf: Nor do I see why we need an obsolete relic like Rayshifting when we have the Zero Sail!

Goredolf: Go on, Moony, you know I'm right!

Goredolf: Tell them how you and the whole staff are just as sick and tired of Rayshifting as I am!

Meunière: What're you talking about? They're both mind-blowing technological achievements. You've just gotta use them right.

Meunière: Also, I was on the staff at the original Chaldea too, so if anything, I'm way more used to Rayshifting.

Meunière: You agree with me, right, Fujimaru? Rayshifting is way more fun than Zero Sailing, isn't it?

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, I guess. (Monotone)

Fujimaru 2: (Honestly, neither one's exactly a walk in the park. )

Goredolf: Et tu, [♂ boy /♀ girl]!? Argh, why did I have to be born so Rayshift-compatible!?

Goredolf: Oh, never mind all that! Sion! There's something I've been meaning to ask you!

Goredolf: We know now that the Crypters' accursed leader, Kirschtaria Wodime, is in the Atlantic Lostbelt.

Goredolf: I'm also told it's the largest Lostbelt in the world by far, and that the branches of its Tree of Emptiness cover Earth's entire stratosphere!

Goredolf: So what possible point could there be in making a pit stop at this Lostbelt in India!?

A:Sion: It is not a pit stop. We need to go there to ensure our chances of victory are as high as possible.

A:Sion: According to Trismegistus, the ocean occupies most of the Atlantic Lostbelt's territory.

A:Sion: And we are not talking a modern-day ocean here. We are talking about one from the Age of Gods, filled to the brim with ether and Demonic Beasts.

A:Sion: As things stand right now, we have no way of crossing an ocean like that safely.

A:Sion: If you were to enter the Atlantic Lostbelt now, you would just end up as so much seaweed.

Goredolf: I-I see. Does that mean we can't get there in the Border?

Da Vinci: I'm afraid not. Sion and I have been talking about it, and we both came to the conclusion...

Da Vinci: ...that it's just not possible to make the Border seaworthy while preserving its existing functionality.

Da Vinci: Just because it can sail in Void Space doesn't mean it can do the same in Reality Space. Each ocean requires a completely different means of traversal.

Da Vinci: And since the Border is an All-Terrain Void-Transporter, we can't allocate that many resources only to make it capable of sailing on real water.

Da Vinci: I guess we could technically do it if we made the hull bigger, but if we did that, we wouldn't have nearly enough staff to run it.

Da Vinci: A vehicle that size would need at least sixty professionals to be operated. Can you guess what resource we are lowest on just now?

Mash: I guess that would be human resources...

Mash: Meunière and the rest of the Border's staff are all doing their best, but...

A:Sion: Right. So you are going to acquire what we need in the Indian Lostbelt.

Fou: Fou?

Fujimaru 1: want us to recruit more people there?

A:Sion: No, no, nothing like that. We already know that you cannot bring anything native to a Lostbelt outside it, right?

A:Sion: No, this is a simple matter of earthbound coordinates.

A:Sion: India has everything we currently lack, so you are going to go there to get it all in one fell swoop.

A:Sion: Is that not right, Captain? We are all done making adjustments and attachments over here.

A:Sion: All you have to do now is personally activate the Aronnax Phantasm in India and attach it.

Captain: ...Yes, I'll go with them. It's been several months since I started helping out with the Border's maintenance.

Captain: It might be as slow as a sea turtle, but I can't help but have some affection for it after all this time.

Captain: And I know the Phantasm needs to be activated very carefully, with a precise ritual, and only at particular coordinates.

Captain: I don't know if we can even use it in a Lostbelt or not, but we'll never know unless we try.

Captain: That said, I'm the one who's going to decide what it becomes. That part is nonnegotiable.

Captain: And if I decide it's not going to work, I'm going to come back on my own. Got that, Sion?

A:Sion: Sure, as your Master, I am okay with that. Though I seriously doubt you are capable of being so heartless.

Captain: Hmph.

Fujimaru 1: Um...

Fujimaru 2: What are you talking about?

Captain: ...We're talking about my coming along with you to India. I thought you'd already been told about that.

Captain: Da Vinci, do you remember seeing a steel,pyramid-shaped object somewhere around the dock?

Captain: Well, it's mine. I'd like you to store it in the Border for me. In the worst case, we can use it as a shield.

Da Vinci: Oh, you mean that weird-looking thing that almost seems like part from a car body kit?

Da Vinci: Aha, is that the Aronnax Phantasm thing you were just talking about?

Captain: ...Yeah. It's not much use for a mermaid that can swim around the ocean freely, though.

Goredolf: Hmm. I can't say I know what it is you're talking about, but the more Servants around who can keep me safe, the better.

Captain: Um, thanks? Anyway, glad to be here, everybody.

Captain: Oh, and don't worry about my seat. I already installed one for me, and it only takes up half of Meunière's space.

Meunière: (Whoa, really!? That means Captain's gonna be sitting next to me! )

Meunière: (This is my big chance to show him what I'm made of! I can't wait to get started! )

Goredolf: All right, but is that our only objective in India? Does this mean we don't have to cut down its Tree of Emptiness?

A:Sion: No, you will definitely be needing to eliminate the Indian Lostbelt while you are there...

A:Sion: ...given that it seems to be indirectly responsible for the recent Rayshift incident.

A:Sion: The Indian Lostbelt...

A:Sion: There is a very good chance that these histories that were pruned away after they were deemed unnecessary contain significant and unprecedented threats.

A:Sion: I have determined that we cannot leave this Lostbelt be just because it is low on our list of priorities.

A:Sion: Besides, there is still so much we do not know,and not just about the Trees of Emptiness.

A:Sion: What is going on with the Crypters? Who are the Alter Egos claiming to be Disciples of the Foreign God?

A:Sion: Every Lostbelt we investigate provides us with more data.

A:Sion: Fujimaru. Mash. Da Vinci. Goredolf. Meunière.

A:Sion: As the one supervising the Command Room, and as someone personally wishing for your success, there is something I wish to say.

A:Sion: ...You need to eliminate every Lostbelt. We have no choice but to fight, regardless of how painful that choice is.

A:Sion: You need to eliminate them both to improve our chances of victory during the inevitable climactic confrontation, and to return human history to its proper place.

Mash: Sion...

A:Sion: Whoops, scratch that! I should know better than to get overly serious before you have even headed out on a mission!

A:Sion: I am sure we will run into more than enough trouble in the Lostbelts, so we should at least try to enjoy ourselves while we are in the base!

A:Sion: All right, that is all for now. Please make sure to review the particulars of this mission on your mobile devices.

A:Sion: This Order will commence at dawn.

A:Sion: Be sure to get plenty of sleep, and come to the dock by the time we agreed on.

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Fujimaru 2: Roger that!

Da Vinci: ...

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Fujimaru 2: Da Vinci...?

Da Vinci: ...

Fujimaru 1: Uh, hello?

Fujimaru 2: Is she...sleepstanding...?

Da Vinci: Oh, Fujimaru. What's up?

Da Vinci: We have less than six hours until the mission starts. You should head back to your room and get some rest.

Da Vinci: I doubt we'll have many chances to get a full night's sleep once we're in the Lostbelt. Who knows when you'll get another chance to stay in a bed that doesn't rock?

Fujimaru 1: Uh, you might want to check your watch...

Fujimaru 2: It's actually time to go right now, Da Vinci.

Da Vinci: Huh? It's already time? Have I been sleeping standing up this whole time?

Da Vinci: ...

Da Vinci: Hehe, oopsies. I didn't really want to go back to my workshop, so I guess I ended up resting my eyes first a little longer than I meant to.

Da Vinci: Well I feel silly☆

Da Vinci: Anyway, go on and head down to the dock. I'll catch up with you guys soon!

Fujimaru 1: (Where did she get those roller skates...? )

Fujimaru 2: (She just skated down the hall like it was a giant rink...)

Nezha: ...As I. Had thought. Da Vinci is having. Some operational difficulties.

Fujimaru 1: Nezha!?

Fujimaru 2: When did you get here!?

Nezha: I have. Been behind you. For some time. You must. Have been. So focused. On Da Vinci. That you didn't notice.

Nezha: In any case. This is. A good chance. To tell. You this. You can't. Let Da Vinci. Push herself. Too much.

Nezha: She is. Doing everything. Leonardo. Da Vinci would. Be doing. But while. In a much. Smaller body.

Nezha: That obviously. Puts tremendous strain. On her now. You must. Be aware. Of that.

Nezha: She may. Have inherited. Leonardo. Da Vinci's. Duties.

Nezha: But she. Is a. Pseudo-Servant. Just like. Mash is.

Nezha: We may. Differ in format. But she and. I are. Very similar. I understand. How she. Is feeling.

Nezha: No. Scratch that. I do. Not know. How she. Is feeling. Da Vinci is. So strong.

Fujimaru 1: Nezha...?

Nezha: I said too much. My apologies. So please. Keep this. Between us. Promise?

Nezha: I am. Coming along. To the Indian Lostbelt. I hope. We can. Continue. To get along.

Fujimaru 1: Same here!

Fujimaru 2: Glad to have you with us again!

Nezha: Understood. I promise. I will. Not let. You down.

Nezha: That said...

Nezha: The jewel. In my. Chest is. Acting up. A bit. I don't. Think this. Has ever. Happened to. Me before.

Nezha: ...The Indian. Lostbelt is. A very. Bad place. Every part. Of my. Spirit Origin. Is warning. Me not. To go.

Nezha: Even so. Every Lostbelt. Is dangerous. I am. The Crown. Prince Nezha. I must. Not back down. From a challenge.

Nezha: If things. Go bad. I know. You will. Help me! I'm sure. I have. Nothing to. Worry about!

Nezha: Let's go. The others. Are waiting!

Da Vinci: Oh man, sorry I'm late! I can't believe I took so long to get ready!

B:Sion: It looks like you are all here. Then let us begin the final rundown!

A:Sion: Your destination is the Indian Lostbelt. Your objective is to help Captain gain experience poi–

A:Sion: I mean, power up the Shadow Border, explore the Indian Lostbelt, and ultimately eliminate it.

A:Sion: Captain and I will handle the Shadow Border side of things, so please do not concern yourselves with that.

A:Sion: What I would like you to focus on, Master Fujimaru, is cutting down the Indian Tree of Emptiness.

A:Sion: I estimate you should have room in the Border to fit about twenty days worth of supplies.

A:Sion: While the Aronnax Phantasm will be loaded into the hangar as supplemental equipment...

A:Sion: will not need to account for it in battle,as it is not meant for offensive purposes.

Holmes: I take it we will be summoning reinforcement Servants within the Lostbelt again, as we have done thus far?

A:Sion: Correct. From here, you will need to travel across Void Space to get close to the Indian Lostbelt...

A:Sion: ...and from there, you will need to immediately undergo another Zero Sail in order to make your way inside...

A:Sion: Consecutive Zero Sails are draining, even for Servants, and Da Vinci's protection safeguards can only do so much.

A:Sion: So I think it is best if we keep no more than three Servants on standby in the Border.

Goredolf: Then, no matter how many Servants we win over to our side in the future, we'll only be able to take three of them into a Lostbelt with us?

A:Sion: That is how it works out, yes. I am not saying we can never send more than three if we really have to, but the Servants summoned inside a Lostbelt are more powerful anyway.

A:Sion: So when you get there, I would like you to secure a leyline and use Mash's holy relic to form contracts with new Heroic Spirits, just as you have in the other Lostbelts.

A:Sion: All right the Wandering Sea Command Room's supervisor, I have an order for those of you on the field team.

A:Sion: As of this moment, Novum Chaldea will be transitioning to its first battle position.

A:Sion: Field team, go ahead and board the Border,starting with Master Fujimaru.

A:Sion: Once I have confirmed all of your vitals are green,you will begin a Zero Sail...

A:Sion: ...and officially commence Order Lostbelt No. 4 along with its Sub-Order, Horned Monster.

A:Sion: Make sure you all give it everything you have,and I look forward to your safe return!

Section 1: Where to Set Out

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 Proper Human History Resemblance: C Lostbelt Depth: A

P. A. System Firing existence verification tether into Reality Space. Anchor point at Heroic Spirit ■■'s virtual nautical chart, confirmed.

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

P. A. System Reality Space anchor secured. Reality verification complete.

P. A. System Establishing Shadow Border's existence within Lostbelt. Zero Sail return successful.

Holmes: Good, we've made it back to Reality Space.

Fou: Fou fou.

Mash: Oof...That violent shaking never gets any easier. Are you okay, Master?

Fujimaru 1: I'm fine. I'm used to it by now.

Mash: I'm impressed, Master. Not many people could adapt to this as quickly as you have.

Fujimaru 2: This emergence felt a lot like the one in Scandinavia...

Captain: ...You don't say. You've got good instincts, Fujimaru.

Goredolf: Heh, not so fast. Just take a look at how adeptly I'm carrying myself. Why, I'm the very picture of dignity. A Zero Sail is no worse than a drive in the rain for me.

Goredolf: Surely all that rattling must have been a dreadful sight more difficult for a freshly summoned Servant who's never left that lukewarm base of yours, no?

Captain: ...I feel quite as powerless as a krill. One already in a whale's stomach at that.

Captain: But never mind. So long as I am at sea, even the most violent upheaval is as a gentle breeze to me.

Captain: If anyone should be worried about getting seasick, it's you guys. This ship could and should be much more comfortable.

Captain: In particular, I'd like to add a bit more in the way of padding to my cushions.

Captain: A good captain must always take care of his crew, after all. Had I known how uncomfortable these chairs were, I would have prioritized making improvements...

Da Vinci: Hey, I'm glad to work together to keep the Border's systems in good shape...

Da Vinci: ...but I'm not about to let you go tinkering with tiny things like that on your own anytime soon.

Da Vinci: Even something as small as changing the air freshener we use in the bathroom could lead to fighting among the staff.

Da Vinci: I'm actually being a lot more considerate of everyone on board than you might think, you know?

Captain: That is good to hear, but this is the sort of problem that should have been addressed in the planning stages of creating this vessel.

Captain: You might have the most advanced vessel in the world, but it will do you little good if your crew is in too low spirits to make proper use of it.

Captain: I'd guess the previous Da Vinci had no idea how difficult a voyage at sea could be.

Da Vinci: Ouch. Well, you've got me there.

Da Vinci: The last version of me was a genius, but she was definitely kind of...insensitive about things like that.

Da Vinci: Still, she did make this amazingly capable armored vehicle back when nobody had any idea what was going to happen.

Da Vinci: I'd say that more than gets me off the hook for overlooking little things like cushions!

Holmes: Quite so. The next time we build a vehicle, we'll be sure to pay more attention to creature comforts.

Holmes: In the meantime...we have made our way through the storm wall, and are now inside the Indian Lostbelt.

Holmes: We should begin by assessing our surroundings. First things first, Mr. Meunière, can you see this Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness?

Meunière: ...Yeah, I think that's it over there. I can see something far-off to the southeast!

Holmes: So, it has already taken root, as I suspected. Furthermore, it appears to have already grown considerably.

Holmes: But unlike in China and Scandinavia, at least we know where to find it. That should save us a good deal of time.

Nezha: Then let's. Go cut. It down. Right now.

Goredolf: Just like that!? Are all Chinese robots so...bold?

Holmes: No, that would be too dangerous. The tree is very far away, and I doubt the enemy has simply left it undefended.

Holmes: Oh, yes, that reminds me. I'm aware we have yet to define this term for our current circumstances...

Holmes: ...but there is almost certainly another enemy we will need to face here.

Holmes: Given what we have seen thus far, there is an excellent chance that there is a Crypter assigned to this Lostbelt, and a king who has been ruling it since prior to the Crypter's arrival.

Holmes: It is therefore in our best interests to gather as much information as we can before we prepare to face them.

Holmes: ...While this particular Tree of Emptiness does seem to have grown considerably, it also appears to be in a fairly stable state.

Holmes: So we do not seem to be under any immediate pressure.

Holmes: Of course, if things should take a sudden turn for the worse, we will have no choice but to act...

Holmes: ...but for the time being, it should be safe to prioritize investigating this Lostbelt.

Holmes: Whatever steps we take next, we should begin by getting to the bottom of this case–er, that is, this unknown history.

Goredolf: Y-yes, quite. Very well, we will start by gathering information. It's important to know exactly what sort of dangers one is up against, after all.

Nezha: I see. Understood. For now.

Da Vinci: All righty, let's see if there's anything else of interest around here...Hm? What's that?

Holmes: Hmm. It would seem there is something else visible to the naked eye here; something a fair distance from the Tree of Emptiness in its own right. Fascinating.

Fujimaru 1: It's very, uh...square...

Fujimaru 2: It's very, uh...big...

Goredolf: What the hell is that!? Is it natural? Man-made? Hurry up and scan it, man!

Meunière: I'm working on it, I'm working on it! Come on...

Meunière: It's no use. I can't get a read on it with anything! It's like it's deflecting any attempts to scan it!

Holmes: Hmm. I thought it might be some sort of magecraft-based structure...but if it doesn't show up on magical energy scans, perhaps it isn't.

Holmes: It seems all we can do is barely make it out with our eyes.

Holmes: Which would mean that, empirically speaking,we can't even be sure it is truly there.

Holmes: I suppose one possible explanation is that we are all just seeing things!

Goredolf: You mean, a mass hallucination? As in, a vision from space...? Warm hospitality...A frightening girl...Ghh, my head!

Mash: Please calm down, Director. I'm sure that was just Holmes trying to make a joke.

Fou: Fo fou.

Holmes: At any rate, the only thing we can say for sure at this point is that we have no idea as to what's going on.

Holmes: Though I do wonder if this may have anything to do with that mysterious girl we saw near Russia's Tree of Emptiness...

Holmes: the sense that we could also see her despite being unable to observe her with any instrumentation.

Holmes: Then again, I suppose she did technically appear as a sort of blank spot on our sensors...Hmm?

Holmes: Regardless, we still have far too little information to work with, so there is nothing to be gained from drawing conclusions now.

Meunière: Hmm. I guess we might be able to get some readings if we got in close?

Meunière: I can't say I'm thrilled about the idea of getting near that thing, but if you want to head over there and try...

Goredolf: Don't be daft! Why would we try to go inside that thing when we don't know the first thing about it!

Goredolf: Why, if something were to happen to the Border, or to me, mankind's last hopes would be dashed for good!

Goredolf: No, our first order of business is to ensure our surroundings are safe, and then to ensure I'M safe! Isn't that right, technical and administrative advisors!?

Da Vinci: You're not wrong. Lostbelts do have their own populations, so we know there's got to be a town around somewhere.

Da Vinci: I can't tell yet if there's one near that giant cube or anywhere else nearby...

Da Vinci: ...but wherever we find one, we shouldn't get too close to it in the Border. Remember what happened in China?

Da Vinci: So if we're prioritizing information and supplies, I think we should start by looking for a campsite.

Da Vinci: Luckily, the environmental readings are all stable, so we can assume we're safe enough to focus on keeping a low profile.

Da Vinci: I'd really rather not use the camo function if we can help it, since it's a major resource hog.

Da Vinci: Now, where's a good out-of-the-way place we could hide the Border around here...Aha, that rocky mountain over there looks promising.

Da Vinci: All right, we should probably decide on our plan of attack here. Just to make sure, how's that device holding up?

Captain: ...The Aronnax Phantasm's as quiet as a piece of coral. It's not about to wake up anytime soon.

Captain: I was afraid of this. Even if we get to the coordinates now, I won't be able to do the ritual to activate it as long as this Lostbelt is here.

Da Vinci: Hmm. So we won't be able to use your fancy new device or update the Border until we get rid of this Lostbelt, huh.

Da Vinci: I thought that might be the case, but that doesn't make it any less sucky.

Holmes: What did you expect? One can hardly hope to win first prize without taking part in the race.

Holmes: We will need to cut off this Lostbelt sooner or later, so if anything, this only helps simplify matters.

Goredolf: Indeed! Now, as usual, my duty is to defend the Border, seeing as it's the last bastion of hope for mankind and all.

Goredolf: Fujimaru and Mash, as you two are our field team, you will be working...well, in the field.

Goredolf: Given that this will be the fourth Lostbelt you've investigated, you should be old hands at it by now.

Fujimaru 1: Understood.

Fujimaru 2: I'll do my best.

Mash: ...Yes, sir. I'll be sure to stay alert while we're in the field.

Da Vinci: Like I said before, the environment here's a lot more stable than it was in Russia or Scandinavia.

Da Vinci: It's similar to China's climate in a lot of ways...but in addition to the physical heat and humidity, there's also a high concentration of mana in the air here.

Da Vinci: That means you won't be able to use the portable stealth devices I gave you in China, just so you're aware.

Da Vinci: Still, at least we know you won't need to use the Ollerus Boards or any other special transport equipment here...

Da Vinci: you won't have to worry about that.

Mash: Yes, ma'am!

Goredolf: Good, good. Just the sort of enthusiasm I like to see.

Goredolf: However, one can't live on enthusiasm alone. Having just two of you out in the field is a risk I would rather not take.

Goredolf: So the Servants who will accompany you on your investigation shall be–

Captain: Sorry, I think that is a sensible decision, but I can't accompany them.

Captain: I was not sent here as a combatant. Were I to try to fight alongside Fujimaru, I would just get in[♂ his /♀ her] way.

Captain: My job is to make improvements on this vessel.

Captain: I may not yet be able to do so, but there is still a lot of foundational work I can begin now.

Captain: The first thing I'm going to focus on is improving this bridge's shock absorption. As I said, these cushions leave quite a lot to be desired.

Da Vinci: Hey, I was planning to get to them when I had time, you know!

Nezha: Of course. I will. Accompany them.

Nezha: I have. Some connection. To India. As well. I am sure. I can. Be useful.

Mash: Right. India has historically been close with China, where they called it Tianzhu. I'm sure you're familiar with it.

Mash: Thank you, Nezha. I'm very reassured knowing you'll be there to help us!

Nezha: ...

Goredolf: ...Nonetheless, Nezha alone simply won't be enough.

Goredolf: Da Vinci needs to remain here on standby, so that she can operate the Border at a moment's notice if necessary.

Goredolf: And Holmes needs to stay so that he can make full use of the Border's instruments while he analyzes our findings.

Goredolf: Suffice to say, Fujimaru, that you will need to bolster your fighting force if you are to carry out your investigation.

Goredolf: To do so, you will have to try summoning new Servants in the field.

Goredolf: It's a shame the Atlas Institute Servant wasn't more accommodating, but there's nothing we can do about that!

Da Vinci: (I see Gordy's in a really good mood now that he has another Servant staying behind who can keep him safe. )

Da Vinci: I agree you'll need to start by summoning new Servants, but as they say, every cloud has a silver lining.

Da Vinci: And this particular summoning has two of them.

Da Vinci: First off, electricity. Thanks to Sion, we have another disposable booster you can use, like you did in China.

Da Vinci: She said it's called a Void Cell. I gotta say, the Atlas Institute comes up with some really interesting stuff sometimes.

Da Vinci: As a refresher, just hook it up to Mash's shield and it'll provide all the resources you need for the summon.

Da Vinci: Unfortunately, thanks to all the time it took to make everything, it's only got enough juice for two Servants...

Da Vinci: ...but hey, it's still waaay better than flying a kite in a storm, right?

Da Vinci: Second, I already found a perfect leyline for summoning! Aaand it's well within walking distance.

Holmes: I concur. Once you have bolstered your forces there, you can begin investigating our surroundings in earnest.

Mash: Understood. We'll make sure to do that.

Fujimaru 1: Well, no time like the present! Let's go!

Fou: Fou fooou!

Da Vinci: ...You sure you're okay with this, Gordy?

Goredolf: Wh-what do you mean?

Da Vinci: Oh, you know, I just figured you'd want to say “Hold it! I'm the director, and I give the orders around here! ” or something like that.

Goredolf: Oh.

Goredolf: ...Well, I will admit I did come up with a few authoritative directives ahead of time...

Goredolf: ...but I ultimately decided they weren't necessary, given how this Lostbelt seems fairly peaceful.

Goredolf: And if there is no point in saying them, well,why waste my breath? It's only good sense.

Da Vinci: Of course there's a point to them. They're very important! Go on, Gordy, hurry up and say something!

Goredolf: O-oh? Well, if you insist, and if it's not too late...Ahem.

Goredolf: Hold it, hold it! You're forgetting something pivotal!

Fujimaru 1: ...What's that?

Goredolf: Your Commander's orders, of course! We can't start an operation without them!

Goredolf: Go on now, line up! Backs straight! Never mind the salute, just listen up!

Goredolf: Fujimaru! As the captain of the Shadow Border,and the director of Chaldea, here are your orders!

Goredolf: You are to investigate this Lostbelt spreading across Indian land, and to find a means of felling that Tree of Emptiness as soon as possible!

Goredolf: In addition to eliminating this Lostbelt,and protecting Earth from this invasion...

Goredolf: are also to secure a path that will enable us to further modify and evolve the Shadow Border!

Fujimaru 1: ...Yes, sir!

Fujimaru 2: On it!

Da Vinci: (That's more like it. When a mission's especially difficult, that's when you need to send them off with high hopes. )

Da Vinci: (We're really coming into our own as a team. I think we'd even give the old Chaldea a run for its money! )

Section 2: Meeting Hope in a Lonely World

Goredolf: I have to ask: are you sure this will work? You had a fairly rough go of it in China, didn't you?

Goredolf: Granted, I was so out of sorts early on there thanks to having to confront my mortality that I wasn't able to make the same sort of coolheaded decisions I usually do...

Goredolf: I actually don't quite remember what happened very well! Still, I do recall hearing something about being unable to summon Servants there?

Meunière: You don't have to tell us. We're all fully aware.

Meunière: But I think we'll be okay. China was a unique situation, even for a Lostbelt.

Meunière: Still, for what it's worth, I don't think Fujimaru'll have any trouble summoning capable Servants here.

Da Vinci: Same! All we have to do now is give it a shot! Is everything ready, Mash?

Mash: Yes. Everything is in place for the summoning spell, and the connection to the Spirit Origin briefcase is stable.

Mash: Running final checks...done. Heroic Spirit Summoning System Fate: all systems green!

Mash: Go ahead whenever you're ready, Master!

Fujimaru: My will creates your body, and your sword creates my destiny. If you heed the Grail's call, and abide by this will and reason, then answer me.

Fujimaru: I hereby swear.

Fujimaru: I embody all that is good in the world. I shall defeat all that is evil in the world.

Fujimaru: Seventh Heaven clad in the three words of power! Come forth from the circle of binding, Guardian of the Scales!

Rama: I am Rama, a Saber, and the Great King of Kosala.

Karna: I am a Lancer. My True Name is Karna. It is good to be here.

Mash: It worked, Senpai! We couldn't have hoped for a better result!

Fujimaru 1: This is great!

Fujimaru 2: We even know them already!

Goredolf: Whoaa! ...Uh, good, good! I knew I had it in me!

Goredolf: Why, these Servants I summoned are perfect for tackling India. With a lineup like this, I daresay we've already as good as won!

Da Vinci: Well, teeechnically, it was Fujimaru that summoned them.

Mash: This is such good news it almost makes me want to run around whooping for joy. I won't, of course!

Mash: But at least Fou can hop around gleefully in my stead. Go ahead, Fou!

Fou: Fo fou, fooou!

Karna: I see. Now I understand. So we are fighting for Chaldea on behalf of Proper Human History.

Rama: Indeed! It sounds as though your path thus far has been quite arduous, Master Fujimaru.

Rama: But now that you have summoned me–the King of Kosala, and avatar of Vishnu–your worries are over.

Rama: No matter what manner of hardships may lie ahead, my sword–a bane to all evil–will rend any obstacles you encounter asunder!

Rama: And on the slight chance I'm not enough by myself, you even managed to summon Karna, the Hero of Benefaction!

Rama: This goes far beyond just good luck...Just how many good deeds have you done to earn this kind of karma, Master?

Karna: You give me far more credit than I deserve...

Karna: Still, I can promise you this, Master. Now that I have been summoned here, I will do everything in my power to see your will done. I await your orders.

Karna: That a kshatriya, I could ask for no greater honor than to fight alongside the King of Kosala.

Karna: Truthfully, even I cannot deny that I feel fortune smiling upon us.

Rama: Hahaha, how very respectful of you, son of Surya, god of sun. I will feel most reassured knowing you have my back!

Mash: ...

Fujimaru 1: You're really happy about this, huh, Mash?

Mash: Oh, uh, yes! Although, I'm also just relieved...

Mash: ...since I already know very well just how heroic and dependable they are.

Mash: I'm so grateful they were the ones who chose to answer your call.

Da Vinci: I'll say! Even without the home advantage going for them, I'd say these were some of the best possible Servants we could have hoped to summon!

Da Vinci: Rama, Karna, Arjuna, and Pārvatī were my top choices from the Spirit Origin graph going in...

Da Vinci: ...but it was still a roll of the dice as to whether any of them would respond to the summon!

Da Vinci: And if that weren't good enough, Rama and Karna are both enormously well-known and influential here.

Da Vinci: Given all that, along with the fact that they know India like the backs of their hands, I'm sure they'll be even more helpful than usual!

Da Vinci: That said, I'm sure some things might be off for them here, given that it's a Lostbelt and all, but I'm sure they'll still handle it way better than us Europeans☆

Holmes: Speaking of which, what do you make of this Lostbelt so far? How is it different from the India you're familiar with?

Rama: How is it different? How is it NOT different? I recognize nothing of this topography.

Rama: No, it's more than that. I'm not quite sure how to describe it, but it feels like the air here is...

Karna: Yes, it's very dry. It makes me feel...lonely.

Rama: Yes! That's it. It makes me feel lonely. I have no idea what that might mean, though...

Mash: Lonely, huh...

Fou: Fooou?

Rama: And of course, I always make a point to try and sense my wife whenever I materialize, but it seems she is nowhere to be found here. One more reason I feel lonely, I think.

Rama: Ahh, my beloved Sita. When will I get to see you again...?

Karna: I don't sense anything familiar here either. Well, I suppose there is–

Karna: ...

Fujimaru 1: Is something wrong?

Fujimaru 2: Are you picking something up?

Karna: ...No, it's nothing. For a moment, I felt a bit of the kind of tension I feel prior to battle.

Karna: I was trying to figure out what it might be, but I couldn't come up with anything. I must have been imagining things...or perhaps my mind was playing tricks on me.

Karna: I'm sorry I can't be clearer than that, Master.

Holmes: Very well then, what do you make of that mysterious cube off in the distance?

Rama: To be honest, I have no idea.

Rama: I've traveled to all manner of countries in my search for Sita, but I've never seen nor heard of anything like that.

Karna: Nor have I. There is something about its shape that seems vaguely familiar...

Karna: ...but I am sure that is not the kind of answer you are looking for.

Da Vinci: Not really, no. I could say it looks like a giant die, or an enormous 3D puzzle, but that wouldn't do us any good.

Da Vinci: We want to know what it's made of, not what it looks like.

Goredolf: Hmph. If you Proper Human History Servants don't know, then it's obviously something unique to this Lostbelt.

Goredolf: In which case, the only way we'll find answers is by investigating it. You can start with our immediate surroundings, as I originally planned!

Goredolf: Remember, the fate of the world hinges on us, so make sure you do your damn jobs!

Rama: ...Hey, Master? I know he's your superior, but does he have to be so condescending? Does he not know I'm a king?

Fujimaru 1: Sorry about that...

Fujimaru 2: He's a good guy at heart! I promise!

Rama: Well, no matter. Given that I am a Servant now,I can certainly overlook a transgression or two.

Nezha: He is. Definitely condescending. But also. Totally harmless. I recommend. Not dwelling. On it.

Fou: Fou, fou.

Holmes: All right, why don't we get our investigation underway?

Da Vinci: We'll begin with the immediate vicinity, so just head in the direction we tell you and we should be all set.

Da Vinci: You might run into a wild animal or two along the way, but I'm sure you guys will be able to handle them just fine!


Mash: We did end up running into some wild animals,but you all handled them, no problem!

Mash: That said...

Fou: Fooou?

Fujimaru 1: There's obviously something on your minds.

Fujimaru 2: You all look pretty puzzled.

Rama: Indeed. Now that I've had a quick warm-up, I can say for sure that there is something strange about this land.

Nezha: I agree. Completely. But I can't. Figure out. What it. Might be.

Karna: Yes. Compared to the one we know from...Proper Human History, was it? It feels as though there is something unusual covering the entire world.

Mash: Is it like the loneliness you mentioned before?

Rama: Maybe, maybe not. It's nothing I can really put my finger on, nor can I put it into words.

Rama: All I know for sure is that, whatever it is,it's preventing us from performing at our best.

Rama: It doesn't mean we can't fight, but we definitely can't use one hundred percent of our power.

Fujimaru 1: Do you think it'll get better?

Rama: Honestly, I don't know. Things might improve once we get used to it, but at this point, I just can't say.

Rama: Nonetheless, I wouldn't pay it too much heed.

Rama: Even if we can't use all of our power, we still have more than enough to carry out your commands.

Rama: So don't worry about us, Master. All you need to worry about is telling us what to do.

Rama: Now then, it looks like we have more hungry beasts to deal with. Let's take care of them quickly so we can continue investigating our surroundings!


Da Vinci: So hey, what do you make of the area so far?

Da Vinci: We've been able to get a handle on it to some degree on our end, but I'd still like to hear your thoughts on it now that you've experienced it for yourselves.

Mash: Well, I can see a lot of placid bodies of water around here. They're all covered in lotus flowers, and it's very pretty.

Mash: And there's also plenty of dry land, so we haven't had any problems walking around.

Fujimaru 1: Basically, it's surprisingly normal.

Fujimaru 2: It's almost strangely peaceful.

Da Vinci: Hmm...Well of course, water is essential for living things to survive.

Da Vinci: It looks like there are large rivers here too, so it would seem it's just as environmentally stable as China was.

Holmes: Oh? This signal...Is that...?

Holmes: Just as I suspected. A world with a pleasant climate is bound to have people, which also means it's bound to have towns.

Holmes: I just picked up what appears to be one such town in the direction you're headed. I'll send you the coordinates now.

Holmes: Be sure to approach it with the utmost caution.


Narration: Close your eyes. Clasp your hands.

Narration: ...Offer your prayer to the god above.

Narration: Those three things are an important part of our daily lives. We all have to do them.

Narration: My father complains about everything, but he still prays every day, even if he always grumbles while he does it.

Narration: If I forget to pray at the right time, he gets really angry. Well, he's always angry, but he gets even more angry.

Narration: I think, if I had a mother...she'd get angry too.

Narration: I've only heard about mothers in stories, so I don't know that for sure, but that's what I'd guess.

Narration: Prayers are very important, so I can't blame them for getting angry.

Narration: That's true for routine prayers...and prayers just for the sake of praying.

Narration: Praying is an essential part of our lives.

Narration: We pray...And we pray...

Narration: And we hope that our god hears us.

Narration: We live our lives the best we can. We try hard to be good people.

Narration: So please, o great god above...

Narration: Please guide us to the next yuga.

A:???: Hm? What's all the commotion outside? I'm gonna go take a look!

B:???: ...Where do you think you're going?

A:???: I-it's okay, I already finished my prayers! Come on, Vihan!

Rama: Once we confirmed the town was safe to approach, we decided to take a closer look, as there was only so much we could learn at a distance.

Rama: That said, this isn't what I was expecting...

Fujimaru 1: It feels vaguely unsafe here...

Fujimaru 2: It definitely doesn't seem too peaceful...

Mash: I'd have to agree. There are a number of broken buildings, and the fountain is jutting out at an odd angle...

Mash: It would be a beautiful town square if was properly maintained, but as it is now, it feels kind of run-down.

Da Vinci: What about townspeople? Are there any there?

Mash: Yes, there are, though it feels like they're giving us a wide berth.

Da Vinci: I don't see any furry-eared beasts like we did in Russia, and it doesn't look like the ages are skewed like in Scandinavia...

Da Vinci: At a glance, they look like perfectly ordinary people. Hmm.

Karna: They do seem to be wary of us, but I don't sense any overt hostility. I imagine they would react similarly to any unfamiliar visitors.

Holmes: It would seem they're sizing us up just as we're sizing them up. In that case, it's best if we don't give them unnecessary cause for suspicion.

Holmes: We'll refrain from calling you for the time being, so please use that time to focus on gathering as much information as you can.

Mash: Understood. All right, here goes...

Girl & Dog: ...

Fujimaru 1: (There's a girl looking at us very intently. )

Fujimaru 2: (That doggo is adorable! )

Fou: Fou...? Fooou...?

Mash: She doesn't seem to be afraid of us, either. I think I'll try talking to her.

Mash: Ahem...Hi there! Could we talk to you for a bit?

A:Girl: Yikes, you surprised me! ...Hello!

Mash: I'm sorry. I didn't mean to scare you.

A:Girl: Oh, don't worry. I'm always spacing out, so I get surprised a lot.

A:Girl: If you just want to talk, that's fine with me.

A:Girl: Say, can I ask who you guys are? I've never seen anyone else dressed like you before.

Fujimaru 1: We're travelers.

Mash: That's right.

Mash: This is Fujimaru, and I'm Mash Kyrielight.

Mash: May I ask your name?

A:Girl: I'm Asha, and this is Vihan! He's astonishingly cute, isn't he?

Vihan: Arf!

Fou: Fou fou. Fou.

Rama: So you are named after the Hindi words for “hope” and “dawn. ” That's lovely.

Rama: Oh yes, I almost forgot. I am Rama, and this is Karna and Nezha.

Rama: You may have heard our names in stories of great warriors, but pay that no heed.

Asha: ...?

Karna: (...? Is it my imagination, or do the other people here seem afraid of something now? )

Asha: So if you're travelers, does that mean you don't have a home?

Mash: No, we don't. At least, not in this town.

Asha: You don't? That's terrible! Shockingly terrible!

Nezha: Why is. That terrible?

Asha: 'Cause of the kali, of course! You can't pray without a house, and if you can't pray, the kali are gonna eat you up!

Rama: Kali? Asha, is that–

Asha: Ah. Fath–

B:Fierce-Looking Man: What are you doing here, Asha? Can't you see what's happening!?

Townsperson's Voice: The kali are here!

Townsperson's Voice: Everyone inside? Okay, I'm locking the door. Get ready to pray!

Townsperson's Voice: Get inside! Hurry!

Asha: The kali are here!? But, these travelers don't have a home...

Asha: Father, can we let them stay in ours?

B:Fierce-Looking Man: Of course not. I can't afford to look after a bunch of people we don't even know.

Mash: W-wait, please!

Mash: You're Asha's father, right? Can you at least tell us what's going on?

B:Fierce-Looking Man: ...My name's Ajai. Use it.

Ajai: And I've got my hands full taking care of just one ulloo. Sorry, but you lot are on your own.

Fujimaru 1: On our own with what?

Ajai: ...? What, were you born yesterday or something? With the kali, of course.

Ajai: All we can do is lock ourselves up in our homes and pray to our god not to discard us...

Ajai: that we don't become faithless, worthless people doomed to end up as nothing more than kali food.

Asha: G-go on, travelers! You've gotta hurry and find a place to hide and pray! I'm sure you already know this, but the kali–

Ajai: Be quiet, Asha. We can't afford to pray for them as well as us.

Karna: Master, all the other people are gone. It looks like we're the only ones left still outside.

Mash: They must have all gone back to their homes.

Mash: Now what should we do? I know Asha told us to hide, but–

Karna: ...Get back, Master.

Fujimaru 1: What is that thing!?

Fujimaru 2: Is that the kali!?

Nezha: Be careful. That is. Not the only one!

Mash: Th-they're attacking everything in sight! Is that why the town is in such poor shape!?

Rama: Kali...That is the devil's name.

Goredolf: Hmm. That must be one unique to Indian mythology, rather than the one defined by the Holy Church.

Rama: I don't know how you Westerners categorize them, but we have always called them devils.

Rama: I do get the sense that these aren't the same devils we know, but whatever they are, they are clearly bent on causing destruction.

Rama: No king can sit idly by and watch such destruction! These creatures will make worthy foes for my indestructible blade!

Nezha: My body. Still feels odd. But the effects. Are negligible. We should. Have no. Serious issues.

Karna: Agreed. I'm not about to let that stop me from helping. Give us your orders, Master. We'll handle these things.

Fujimaru 1: Got it. Let's fight!

Mash: Right. My Ortinax is holding steady at better than expected readings. I'm good to go, too.

Mash: Armored Shielder, moving out!


Nezha: There are. More than. I expected. This could. Be troublesome.

Nezha: ...!?

Person's Voice: Aah! Stay back! Get away from me...!

Person's Voice: P-please, dear god, s-s-s-save m–

Mash: Ah...!

Karna: ...It's my fault. I was one step too late.

Rama: These people have no weapons with which to defend themselves.

Rama: If their homes are destroyed, there is nothing they can do to avoid being eaten...This is horrific.

Karna: I've been focusing on the kali going after the more fragile houses, but there seems to be no end to them. It's becoming a problem.

Karna: I could wipe them all out at once with my Noble Phantasm...but that would also end up destroying the very people and homes we are trying to protect.

Fujimaru 1: Then that's definitely not an option!

Fujimaru 2: We'll just have to do the best we can taking them out one at a time!

Karna: Agreed. This is truly a race against time. Every second counts when eliminating these monsters.

Holmes: Good grief. When I decided to stay out of sight so as not to interfere with your information gathering, I never expected you would end up suddenly fighting such an intense battle.

Holmes: It would seem I'll need to run all the instruments at full power so as not to miss any data. So much for my break...Hm?

Holmes: Hold it. There is something else headed your way.

Holmes: Many somethings, I should say. And all distinctly different from the creatures you're currently fighting.

Mash: !?

Rama: What are these white beasts? Are they hostile too?

Mash: No, look! They're attacking the kali!

Fujimaru 1: So, they're on our side!?

Karna: ...Not necessarily.

Rama: I am not sure if they eat people, or if they hunt kali and simply mistook us for them...

Rama: ...but they're coming after us, too.

Mash: Then I guess there's no point in wondering how these new creatures might affect the situation.

Mash: We'll just have to follow Karna's lead and put everything we have into fighting back.

Mash: We can't let harm come to anyone else! Please give us your orders, Master!


A:Mash: (Huff...Huff...)

A:Mash: ...All nearby hostiles have been eliminated.

A:Mash: We did it...We finally managed to get rid of all those demonic looking kali monsters, and the white beasts that showed up later.

Holmes: As I suspected, it would seem those white beasts and the kali are mortal enemies, given how viciously they attacked one another.

Rama: Indeed. Nor did the white beasts attempt to destroy any part of the town. It was thanks to them that we were able to fend off the kali...

Rama: ...though we did have to eliminate them as well, given that they also tried to attack us.

Ajai: ...

Ajai: You lot did this, huh? Now you've done it.

Fujimaru 1: Oh, hi, Asha's father.

Ajai: Don't call me that.

Fujimaru 2: I'm glad to see you're okay, Ajai.

Ajai: ...Hmph.

Karna: Can you tell us what these things are?

Ajai: (At first I figured these guys were from the other side of the mountain, since they don't pray...)

Ajai: (...but I guess they really are just a bunch of ulloo who don't know anything about the kali. )

Ajai: (...Either way, I don't want any part of this trouble. )

Ajai: What's there to tell? If you lot know what's good for you, you'll get out of here as soon as–

Asha: [♂ Mister /♀ Miss]! Are you guys okay!? ...You are? That's astonishing!

Asha: I'm so glad you're all right...

Mash: I'm glad you're all right too, Asha. What a relief to see you're not hurt.

Asha: Yeah, I'm okay. But Vihan's, well...

Vihan: (Whine, whine)

Mash: I see...He's dragging his leg. Poor thing.

Asha: Yeah. He got it caught under a cabinet that fell down when our house started shaking...I'm sorry, Vihan.

Vihan: (Whiiine...)

Fou: Fou...

Ajai: ...

Ajai: God...Is there any value in a dog that can't run...?


Wh-what happened!? The kali are dead...? AND the sacred beasts!?

Mash: ...Uh, hello. Who are you?

A:???: I'm Prakash, the town mayor.

Prakash: Are you travelers? Do you know anything about this disaster?

Rama: We do. These beasts attacked us, so we killed them.

Prakash: ............You what?

Rama: If you would like a full account,then call for your finest scribe.

Rama: It would be such a waste for me to recount my exploits without someone present to record them.

Prakash: Wh...Wh...

Prakash: What have you done!? How could you have k-k-killed the very agents of our god that keep us safe!?

Fujimaru 1: We didn't have a choice. It was self-defense.

Nezha: Agreed. There was. No other. Way. What's more. They were. Not the. Only ones. We killed.

Mash: That's right. We also fought the creatures you call kali.

Mash: Please understand. We were only trying to protect your town...

Prakash: Hah! Don't be ridiculous! There's nothing to understand.

Prakash: What you have done is unforgivable. It goes against every law of this world!

Prakash: Besides, the god's sacred beasts would never attack people without a good reason! Ahh, this is terrible.

Prakash: If we incur the god's wrath...If he thinks our town allowed, or worse, encouraged your vile deeds...we'll all be done for!

Prakash: Go away! Leave our town at once! You are no longer welcome in Bichu!

H:Town Citizen: Yeah! Get out of here!

H:Town Citizen: You damn heretics'll get us all killed!

I:Town Citizen: Oh no...Could they be those people I've been hearing rumors about lately? Does this mean we're going to suffer divine punishment...?

Rama: Well this is unexpected. They look like they might start throwing stones at any moment. What would you have us do, Master?

Fujimaru 1: ...Let's get out of here for now.

Fujimaru 2: Retreat!

Mash: I agree. It would be difficult to gain any more information under these circumstances.

Mash: Besides, I think we should try to avoid trouble with the locals as much as we possibly can.

Mash: Let's go look for somewhere outside of town to set up camp...

Asha: Poor travelers...


Goredolf: Well this is a fine “how do you do? ”

Goredolf: No sooner do you find a town than you get kicked out for fighting.

Goredolf: You barely even have any intel to show for it! All you did was waste our precious time!

Goredolf: First Russia, then Scandinavia and China, and now India...Why can't we ever catch a damn break!?

Holmes: Good grief. When you're examining a crime scene with a magnifying glass, Goredolf, do you focus on the stain on your pants before even considering the evidence?

Goredolf: H-huh? What's that supposed to mean? Are you saying I have a stain on my finely-ironed slacks!?

Holmes: Oh, no, I beg your pardon. Your uniform is quite spotless.

Captain: Of course it is. Any sailor worth their salt should keep their uniform white as snow. I had mine cleaned by the Laundry Type before we left.

Holmes: (Laundry Type...? Hmm. I do recall seeing a weird-looking Captain running around base before...)

Mash: Um, Holmes? Do you mean that, if we hope to find anything that might lead us to what we are seeking...

Mash: ...we should be prepared to suffer a few setbacks at first?

Holmes: Precisely! If you're too focused on your expense ledger, you'll miss the evidence that's right in front of you, my dear Watson.

Mash: Understood! I'll make sure to keep that in mind!

Goredolf: (Dammit...! That was my chance to be Watson!? Curse my gentlemanly propensity to be so acutely aware of my appearance! )

Goredolf: I-I knew that, of course. I was just, um, playing devil's advocate. A nervous, high-strung devil's advocate.

Goredolf: It was, um, just a cunning ploy to elicit that reaction from Holmes. Yes, that's it.

Fou: Fou...

Da Vinci: Anyway, we need to find a good place nearby where we can pitch camp, right?

Da Vinci: In that case, why don't you try asking the little bunny hiding in the tall grass behind you for a recommendation?

Mash: Good idea. In that case...

Mash: Please don't hide in there, Asha. Can you come out where we can see you?

Asha: Yikes! You surprised me!

Da Vinci: Since we're already surprising her, I might as well introduce myself. I'm sure she can handle it.

Da Vinci: Hi there, Asha. My name's Da Vinci. I'm a friend of Fujimaru's.

Da Vinci: I'm not actually there right now. I'm just using something called a transmission to send my voice over the air.

Da Vinci: There's also a detective here who might pop in every now and then, but don't mind him. He's harmless.

Da Vinci: Oh, we also have a commander who's obviously really bad with kids...

Da Vinci: ...but I'm having him sit this out,whether he likes it or not.

Asha: Wow, it's just one surprise after another! You travelers really can do amazing things, can't you?

Karna: The other townspeople were eager to see us leave. Why did you come after us?

Mash: (That's just like Karna to get straight to the point! I was curious about that too, but still...)

Asha: Oh, uh, well, I wanted to give you these, to thank you for saving us...

Fujimaru 1: Ooh, bananas! Thanks!

Rama: Oho, these are fine bananas indeed.

Rama: You know, I used to feast on the bananas that Hanuman would pick for me all the time.

Rama: They were jewels of the heavens, so delectable a single bite could make your cheeks melt away in pleasure...

Rama: ...but I can tell that these bananas are surely every bit their equal.

Rama: I thank you from the bottom of my heart for this gift, Asha.

Asha: Hanuma...?

Rama: You know, Hanuman? The monkey god? One of my closest allies?

Rama: ...What's that? You've never even heard of him?

Rama: Poor Hanuman. I guess even picking up and carrying a whole mountain wasn't enough to make you famous...You're in no position to be laughing at Lakshmana.

Rama: ...

Rama: Hold on. I sincerely doubt the answer could be no,but let me ask you something just to make sure.

Rama: Have you heard the name “Rama” before?

Asha: ...? (Innocently cocking head)

Rama: What!?

Karna: ...

Karna: My name is Karna. I am the warrior who once fought alongside the Kauravas, the descendants of King Kuru. Have you heard my name before?

Asha: (Shaking head)

Karna: ...I see.

Karna: Well, that is no surprise. I still have a long way to go before I reach the heights of mastery I strive for.

Holmes: Don't be ridiculous, Karna. That's giving yourself far too little credit.

Holmes: It is no exaggeration to say that in the India from Proper Human History, there is not a single person alive who has not heard your names. That is how great your heroic deeds were.

Holmes: So if the people here have no familiarity with the myths of the past, or the figures from well-known stories...

Holmes: ...that would mean that neither the Mahabharata nor the Ramayana exist in this Lostbelt.

Holmes: Alternatively, they may have existed in the past,but have since been forgotten.

Rama: Hmph. How sad to think that the people of this day have never heard of my grand exploits.

Rama: ...No, wait...Does this mean we can't even be sure my exploits happened here?

Rama: And if they didn't, does that mean that neither I nor Sita existed in this India...?

Da Vinci: Either way, if Asha hasn't heard of you, there's no point in pursuing this line of questioning any further.

Da Vinci: I think it's best if we stick to questions she'll actually be able to help us with, starting with our campsite.

Da Vinci: Asha, we're looking for a place where we can rest for the night. Can you think of any good spots?

Asha: Well, um...There's a cave near here we use to play hide-and-seek.

Mash: Anything that would give us shelter from the wind and rain sounds great. Would you show us the way there?

Asha: Sure! Follow me!

Da Vinci: And on the way, we can ask about the really important things, like the you-know-what over there.

Mash: Right. Asha, can I ask you something?

Mash: Do you know anything about that giant tree way off in the distance?

Asha: Ooh, you're curious about it too, huh? So am I! It just sprang up out of nowhere a while ago. I was so surprised...

Rama: Is that all you know about it?

Asha: Well, yeah. I mean, it's really far away, you know?

Asha: Most of the people in town say it probably has something to do with our god, like God's Skyboulder.

Mash: That's actually just what I wanted to ask you about next.

Mash: Is God's Skyboulder what you call that enormous cube floating over those mountains?

Asha: Uh-huh...

Fujimaru 1: God's Skyboulder...

Fujimaru 2: So that's what it's called.

Rama: Now that we know its name, the next question is obvious. What exactly is it?

Asha: Well that's a funny question. God's Skyboulder is God's Skyboulder!

Asha: It's been around forever, just like the sun and the ground. Everyone knows that.

Holmes: Hmm...?

Asha: I don't know what else to say. God's Skyboulder is God's Skyboulder, just like the sun is the sun.

Asha: I'm positive my father would say the same thing!

Holmes: Then why is it called God's Skyboulder? Not that I can imagine how humans could have made such a thing.

Asha: Um, I think it's because our god made it? Or maybe because he lives there?

Asha: Sorry, I really don't know. Nobody ever goes near it.

Holmes: Oh? And why is that? Speaking for myself, I find it an enormously compelling object of interest.

Holmes: Most mysterious indeed. It is without a doubt worth investigating.

Asha: I just know it's got something to do with our god,so people are supposed to stay away.

Asha: Besides, they also say there are lots of kali around there trying to kill our god.

Asha: It's not just me. My father, my aunt...nobody in Bichu ever goes there.

Da Vinci: Oh yeah, we have to ask you about the kali too.

Da Vinci: From what we saw, I'm guessing their attacks happen pretty regularly, but–

Asha: Wow, you mean the kali never come to your town, travelers? That's so surprising!

Asha: You must be from somewhere reeeally far away, especially if you can't even see God's Skyboulder from there.

Asha: But yeah, of course the kali show up a lot whenever a yuga's about to end.

Asha: And since tomorrow's Kali Yuga, I bet there'll be way more tomorrow than there were today.

Mash: Huh? What are you talking about?

Asha: You mean you don't know? I thought everybody knew lots of kali show up on Kali Yuga, since it's the last yuga and all.

Asha: That's why everyone always locks their doors even tighter and prays even harder than they did for Dvāpara Yuga today.

Nezha: ...

Nezha: Question. What will. Happen. When tomorrow. Is over?

Asha: You mean you travelers don't even know that? That's REALLY surprising! I'm pretty sure everyone knows that...even Vihan!

Asha: I mean, it's something as natural as the sun giving us daylight, you know?

Da Vinci: Let's just say we're from somewhere reeeally off the beaten path.

Da Vinci: A place pretty much at the ends of the earth where everything from society to history is fundamentally different.

Da Vinci: So please, tell us, Asha. What happens when Kali Yuga is over?

Asha: Why, our god passes judgment and everyone dies, of course.

Asha: But then, if our god decides you're worthy, he brings you back to life, and the first happy yuga starts all over again.


Fou: (Munch, munch...) Banafou fo fou!

Fujimaru 1: (These bananas ARE really good, but...)

Fujimaru 2: (I'm glad we found a good campsite, but...)

Rama: (Munch munch munch)...Let me just make sure I have these yugas straight, Asha.

Rama: In this world, the first yuga lasts for four days, the second lasts for three, the third lasts for two...

Rama: ...and the final one, Kali Yuga, comes on the final day. Do I have that right?

Asha: Uh-huh. Oh, but they do say each yuga used to be waaay longer a long time ago.

Asha: Once upon a time, I heard there used to be things called “years” and “months” during each yuga...though I don't know what they are.

Asha: Maybe that's why my father always says it's a lot harder to keep track of things like anniversaries now.

Asha: ...I wonder if he remembers that my four thousandth day of being alive is coming up soon...

Karna: Then, when Kali Yuga is over,you said a god will then pass judgment...

Karna: ...killing everyone and bringing them back to life, right?

Mash: An actual god...I guess it's certainly not impossible, especially given what we saw in Scandinavia, but still...

Mash: So this...judgment is just a normal part of life here?

Asha: Uh-huh. As long as you pray, everything stays the same, just like how the sun rises when it's morning.

Holmes: It would seem our shared perceptions of normality are fundamentally misaligned. This could be quite difficult.

Holmes: After all, it only makes sense that someone who perceives such abnormalities to be entirely mundane would find them unremarkable.

Da Vinci: We'll just have to take each difference one at a time.

Da Vinci: Let's start with something simple. In this case, I think it's got to be defining exactly what a yuga is.

Da Vinci: Yugas might be a pretty well-known concept, but it's still important to make sure we're all on the same page.

Da Vinci: Plus, talking about it might help us figure out what the differences are between our concept and Asha's concept.

Da Vinci: So, first off, does everyone here know what yugas are in our world?

Fujimaru 1: I don't, so I was hoping you could fill me in.

Fujimaru 2: I do, but I'd like to go over them anyway.

Captain: Yugas are a Hindu concept that says the world is always cycling between four distinct periods.

Captain: In order, those periods are called Kṛta–or Satya–Yuga, Tretā Yuga, Dvāpara Yuga, and Kali Yuga.

Captain: When the Kali Yuga draws near, law, order, and morality cease to exist, and the world starts to fill up with evil instead.

Captain: Then, when the Kali Yuga ends...

Captain: ...the gods are said to destroy the world, remake it, and let a new Kṛta Yuga begin all over again.

Mash: Uh...Th-thank you, Captain...

Captain: Not at all. I just overheard something with which I was familiar, so I thought I would chime in.

Captain: That's all I had to say.

Da Vinci: (Captain...Now I see. If your True Name is what I think it is, then you would have some ties to India...)

Asha: So you guys DO know what yugas are! Well that's a surprise!

Asha: Oh, I get it. You were just teasing me, weren't you? You're so silly!

Rama: Hmm, this truly is difficult. There are some concepts we share and some we don't, and both kinds are mixed together in the same word.

Karna: At least it seems that we're mostly on the same page when it comes to our enemy.

Karna: I also knew that devils called kali appear during the Kali Yuga to plunge the world into chaos.

Da Vinci: Sure, but according to Asha there, today is only supposed to be the third one, Dvāpara Yuga.

Asha: Oh, the kali are always around. There're just more of them depending on the yuga.

Asha: You almost never see one during the Kṛta Yuga, and there're so many during Kali Yuga it's shocking!

Asha: ...If a kali kills you, you won't be able to receive the god's blessing anymore. That's why everyone prays so hard.

Da Vinci: (Hm? So it's not getting killed they're worried about, but what comes afterwards...? )

Da Vinci: (Does she mean that in a religious sense? )

Karna: Whatever the reasons for it, it sounds like there will be even more kali attacking that town tomorrow.

Karna: What would you have us do, Master?

Fujimaru 1: ...We can't just stand by and do nothing.

Mash: ...I agree. Chaldea values human life above all else...even if that notion flies in the face of how this Lostbelt works.

Rama: Exactly. Sometimes, there are things you just have to do, regardless of whether people hate you or even cast stones at you for it.

Rama: In my case, those things come so naturally to me that it's hardly even a choice.

Rama: My body just ends up moving on its own.

Rama: I think that's what happened back when I lent my aid to Sugriva long ago...

Karna: That man I failed to save earlier...His dying scream was not one of a man who had made peace with his fate.

Karna: ...This system seems evil to me. I may no longer be able to save that man's life, but I can at least make sure that tragedy never happens again.

Nezha: Then. We are decided. We fight!

Nezha: ...This Lostbelt. May not. Be familiar. To us.

Nezha: Yet for. Some reason. This land. Of India. Feels familiar. To me.

Nezha: Perhaps some. Of me. Originates here. As well. As China? I can't. Say why...

Nezha: But I. Will not. Hesitate. To protect. These innocent people.

Nezha: Now we. Know what. Is happening. Tomorrow I. Will work. Even harder. Than ever.

Nezha: Do not. Worry Master. And Mash.

Mash: Nezha...

Holmes: We have only just begun our investigation of this Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness, to say nothing of this God's Skyboulder object.

Holmes: Given that those townspeople could help shed some light on these things, I would certainly hate to lose any of them. It will be dangerous to help them, but I won't stop you from doing so.

Rama: The townspeople also called those white creatures sacred beasts, and said they were the god's agents...

Rama: ...but there weren't nearly enough of them to handle all the kali, and that's before they went and tried to attack us, too. We can't count on them.

Rama: If we're going to be fighting even more kali tomorrow, I would like to find another fighter or two to shore up our ranks while we have the chance.

Da Vinci: And given what happened earlier, I don't think we can expect the townspeople to help us out.

Asha: ...(Fidgeting)

Nezha: What is. It Asha? Is something. The matter?

Asha: No, nothing's wrong. See, um...back in town, I actually peeked out the window and saw you guys fighting.

Asha: Oh, I was still praying to our god the whole time,so I think I should be totally fine!

Asha: You were amazing. I've seen people go hunting before, and you guys didn't move anything like them. It was weren't even human.

Mash: ...

Asha: Then I saw you talking to other people far away after I followed you, and got surprised all over again.

Asha: So, um...I was just wondering...

Asha: Are you guys maybe gods, but not THE god?

Holmes: Gods who aren't THE god? That's an interesting way to put it.

Asha: Well, you know, there's only one god, and you're obviously not him, right? That's all I meant. I hope I didn't say anything weird.

Da Vinci: (Only one god? But India's pantheon is known for being one of the largest in all mythology...)

Asha: I-I guess I did say something weird. I'm sorry.

Asha: Lately, there've been rumors going around of people who seem like gods but aren't THE god, so I just thought...

Fujimaru 1: As a matter of fact, Rama here is practically a god.

Rama: Indeed. I don't usually go around telling people this, but I am actually the avatar of Vishnu. Very occasionally, I can even hear him speaking through me, which is always an incredible surprise!

Rama: Even I cannot help but be respectful when I speak to him directly, even if his voice may only be coming from inside of me.

Fujimaru 2: As a matter of fact, Karna here is practically a god.

Karna: That is not true, Master. I am merely the son of Surya, god of the sun.

Karna: I am certainly no god myself.

Asha: I knew it! I've never heard of any god by that name before, but that's still amazing! I'm shocked!

Mash: If Asha thought we were the beings she's heard rumors about...

Mash: ...that would of course mean people are talking about other beings like us.

Da Vinci: It sure does. And whoever it is, they're very likely to be a Servant. I knew there had to be at least one in this Lostbelt.

Asha: They say one of them came to Bichu not too long ago.

Asha: I think they're staying on a mountain near here. Are they a friend of yours?

Fujimaru 1: They came to your town?

Asha: Uh-huh. It was during the last Kṛta Yuga,though I didn't get to meet them myself.

Asha: But they only took a little look around town before they went to the mountain.

Nezha: Are you sure. They were not. Just a. Passing traveler?

Asha: I guess they could've been...But I heard they dressed really funny, and they even said they were a god.

Mash: It could be a Divine Spirit.

Mash: And if they were alone,they could also be a Rogue Servant.

Mash: I'm sure they would be a powerful addition to our forces if we could convince them to help us.

Rama: Indeed. There is still a lot we don't know about this world's yugas...

Rama: ...but we can focus on them once we have dealt with this immediate threat.

Rama: Now that we've eaten our fill of those delicious bananas, I say we try and look for this being next.

Asha: I'm sorry. I wish I could show you the way, but I need to get home before I get in trouble...

Mash: That's okay. If you can just tell us where to look,I'm sure we can find this place ourselves.

Mash: I'm actually more worried about you, Asha.

Mash: I know your town isn't too far from here, but I still don't like the idea of making you walk home by yourself...

Asha: I'll be fine. The kali only just showed up,and I can always count on Vihan to–

Asha: Oh, right. I didn't bring him with me,'cause he got injured.

Asha: But it's okay! I can be home in no time as long as I run all the way there!

Karna: ...Master.

Fujimaru 1: (Could you see that she gets home safely, without her noticing? )

Fujimaru 2: (Would you mind quietly making sure she gets back safe? )

Karna: Very well. You have my word that no harm will come to her.

Asha: Okay then, see you later, [♂ mister /♀ miss]...god...?

Fujimaru 1: Just [♂ mister /♀ miss] is fine. See you later!

Asha: Bye!

Mash: You know...I was so surprised when she came all the way after us just to say thanks.

Mash: Especially given how the adults there reacted to us.

Mash: She was so sweet, and we learned a lot of useful things from her.

Da Vinci: Definitely. That said, Mash, I'm sure you're already aware of this, but...

Mash: ...Yes. I know.

Mash: Once we destroy this Lostbelt...

Mash: ...she and Ajai are going to disappear, just like the people we met in the other ones...

Holmes: From a purely pragmatic perspective, maintaining good relations with the locals will facilitate our information gathering efforts.

Holmes: I suppose the only advice I can give is to not think about it too much.

Fujimaru 1: ...Yeah.

Fujimaru 2: Holmes is right. Let's just be ourselves and not worry about it for now.

Mash: ...Okay, Master.

Karna: I did as you instructed, Master. Asha walked straight back to town, and is now safe and sound in her home.

Fujimaru 1: Thanks, Karna.

Fujimaru 2: I appreciate it!

Karna: I kept an eye out for kali on the way there and back, but didn't see a single one.

Karna: However, I can't say for certain whether that is because they had just attacked, as Asha said, or if it was merely a coincidence.

Nezha: Unfortunately there. Is still. A great. Deal we. Do not. Know about. These beings.

Rama: Well, it won't be long before we face them again. And that gives us all the more reason to bolster our forces.

Rama: So let us be off to this mountain where the god lives.

Rama: I wonder what sort of god they are. It would certainly be nice if it turns out to be one we know, just to save time.

Rama: Of course, I'm hoping that it will be Sita!

Rama: She's the avatar of Lakshmi, so she could easily have ended up being treated as a god in her own right.

Karna: I hope you will be reunited with her as well...but there is no guarantee this Servant will even be an Indian god.

Karna: They are just as likely to turn out to be a god from the West, or some other region altogether.

Karna: The odds of our encountering a familiar face are really quite slim.

Karna: Just try not to get your hopes up too high...

Section 3: A Mountain Where One Encounters God

Mash: This is the mountain Asha told us about.

Rama: So far...I'm not seeing the god we're looking for.

Holmes: I don't detect a Servant reading from here. What can you sense?

Karna: I think I can sense something akin to divine aura...but it's too faint to be certain.

Rama: I sense it too. At least we would seem to be on the right track. Let's keep looking around.

Rama: Heeey! Is anyone heeere!? Siiitaaa! It's me, Rama!

Fujimaru 1: Is anybody heeere!?

Fou: Fou fooou, fou fooou?

Rama: Ugh, this is getting us nowhere. We should split up and cover more ground.

Nezha: That is. Very true. I can. Fly by. Using my. Wind Fire Wheels. I will search. From the. Skies above.

Mash: Ah! P-please don't go off too far, Nezha! We don't know what else might be here!

Mash: ...Do you think she'll be okay...?

Rama: Don't worry, she's a venerated hero in her own right. I'm sure she'll be fine.

Rama: She said it herself, she's somewhat similar to us in certain ways.

Rama: I do agree that her tendency to rush headlong toward her goals with a single-minded earnestness has the potential to cause trouble...

Rama: ...but I also doubt there are few who can keep up with her sheer airborne maneuverability.

Karna: Besides, it seems we have our own things to worry about.

Da Vinci: Yeah, figures there'd be a monster or two hanging around the mountain where that god lives. Think you guys could take these things out quickly so you can get back to looking for them, please?


Holmes: Have you disposed of all the hostiles then?

Mash: Yes, it was no problem. I don't think the Ortinax has ever been in better shape.

Mash: It's so much more stable now than it was before we came to the Wandering Sea.

Mash: Not only does it have properly outfitted equipment now, but having both Da Vinci and Sion fine-tune it is like...

Mash: ...this one proverb I heard a while ago. Giving an ogre a heavy weapon?

Karna: Something's not right.

Mash: I-I knew it! I thought it sounded strange as soon as the words left my mouth.

Mash: Kintoki's the one who taught me that expression, but I think something might have gotten lost in translation...

Karna: I'm sorry, I'm not familiar with Japanese sayings either. I was speaking about our enemies.

Karna: They are indeed all gone, but there is still something else here...Something whose intentions I cannot discern.

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Karna: ...There.

Karna: Show yourself.

The dust cleared to show... ...a human with a sublimely beautiful body. A body with perfect symmetry, as if it were the epitome of genderless beauty. Their lips curved in an indomitable,but amicable smile.

Even after Karna's spear sailed past them... ...grazing their side and obliterating a boulder with sufficient force to impale a hundred frail-bodied humans... ...they were smiling.

They were smiling with the same casual ease as a person enjoying a gentle breeze at an outdoor café... ...their face betraying not so much as a hint of fear or panic. It was as though they had not just had not a care in the world, even after being millimeters from death.

D:???: My, my, my...Since when is a Servant supposed to go tossing spears at fragile little humans?

Karna: Were you a normal human, I would indeed be deeply ashamed, but I sensed such an attack would not nearly be enough to end you.

Karna: Now that I have seen you for myself,I am even more confident in that assertion.

D:???: Well doesn't that just smack of a bit of ex post facto covering your derriere, honey.

D:???: I thought I'd hidden myself pretty well, so imagine my surprise when that spear went whizzing past me.

D:???: Oh well...That's what I get for not being more careful about investigating strange noises.

Mash: You're...You're...!

Mash: Peperoncino!

Peperoncino: Heeey. Long time no see, Mashie.

Peperoncino: Oh my, you're SO much more expressive now than you were the last time I saw you.

Peperoncino: Well I think that's just peachy♡


Narration: The moment I saw that thing soaring across the sky...

Narration: ...I was overcome with emotion.

Narration: Loathing as foul and putrid as excrement. Rage so hot it could blind me. And above all, some...thing I couldn't ignore no matter how hard I tried.

Narration: Which is why...Which is why...

Narration: ...I had to destroy it, no matter what.

Nezha: ...

Nezha: Wh-what!?

Nezha: ...! Who are–!?

Goredolf: Scandinavia Peperoncino! You're one of the Crypters!

Peperoncino: Absatively. And you must be Chaldea's new director. As for you...

Peperoncino: Why, you must be Mashie's Master, Fujimaru.

Fujimaru 1: That's right.

Peperoncino: Oh my, how forthcoming of you. I like that.

Fujimaru 2: ...

Peperoncino: Oh my. I understand your trepidation, but it just breaks my heart to see you won't even give me the time of day.

Mash: If you're here, Peperoncino, then...

Mash: must be the Crypter in charge of this Lostbelt, aren't you?

Peperoncino: Hmm, yes, I suppose I am.

Fujimaru 1: So you're here to stop us from cutting down the Tree of Emptiness...

Fujimaru 2: So you're the one trying to grow this Lostbelt...

Peperoncino: ...

Peperoncino: Oh, riiight. Almost slipped my mind. Before we do that whole song and dance, there's something I really should warn you about.

Rama: Oh? And what is that?

Peperoncino: Don't get me wrong, I'm perfectly happy to sit here and chat with you all you like...

Peperoncino: ...but maybe you should be a little more concerned about your absent friend right now?

Mash: Huh? What are you talking abou–

Holmes: What is...Look out!

Holmes: Something's plummeting right towards you!

Da Vinci: They're Servants.

Da Vinci: One of them's Nezha...but her vital signs are dropping like a rock!

Da Vinci: And the other one in the world!?

Nezha: Khh...Ah...

Mash: Nezha! Master, it's Nezha! But, her body is...!

Nezha: I failed. I was. Careless...Master. I'm sorry...

Nezha: This is. Beyond terrible. It would. Be one. Thing if. I had. Only lost. But this...

Nezha: Master...I'm so. Sorry...I wish. I could. Have helped. You more...

Mash: Ah...!

Rama: Keep your guard up, Master. We can mourn for her later. Those dust clouds are clearing away, and whoever killed Nezha is about to step out.

Mash: Huh? Nezha...?

Holmes: I'm afraid not. Yes, that is Nezha, but she is not the one we know.

Holmes: I will be direct. The Nezha you know is gone. Her Spirit Origin has completely vanished.

Holmes: The Nezha before you now is not the one summoned at the Wandering Sea, nor the one who was once present at Chaldea.

Holmes: I suspect that Servant there is a different side of Nezha...and an enemy who serves this Lostbelt.

J:Nezha: ...

J:Nezha: Report: Individual exercise complete. Hereby returning to my duty as a divine general...

J:Nezha: ...eliminating foreign elements.

J:Nezha: Commencing operation.

Karna: I have a report to make. That tall man is gone. I didn't even see him leave.

Rama: Hmm. That's concerning too...but we don't have time to go looking for him now.

Rama: I don't know if this Nezha is his Servant or not,but her intentions couldn't be more hostile.

Rama: We'll have to focus on dealing with her first.

Rama: Here she comes, Master and Mash! I know how you feel right now, but you need to get your heads in the game!

B:Mash: ...R-right! Disengaging Ortinax limiters. Preparing for full-powered Anti-Servant combat!


Mash: Sh-she's strong...!

Nezha: Battle is proceeding smoothly/Victory is at hand.

Rama: You might be a little more talkative than our Nezha,but you don't understand your situation at all!

Nezha: Denied/There is nothing wrong with my analytical capabilities.

Nezha: Hm...?

Nezha: ...

Nezha: Higher priority recalled. Disengaging from battle.

Rama: Damn, she got away. Was she acting on her Master's orders...?

Karna: I can't tell. But that Nezha was a formidable fighter indeed. I sense that she is...optimized for this land.

Karna: If we had kept at it, one of us would have ended up resorting to releasing the full power of their Noble Phantasm.

Karna: Perhaps we should be grateful that this mountain where the god we are looking for resides still stands intact.

Fou: Fou...

Mash: ...

Fujimaru 1: Mash...

Captain: ...I know what's going on. It's a lot like the tides.

Captain: No matter how much you plead, or how much you pray,there are some things you can't stop...

Captain: ...and you just have to accept them.

Captain: I got to know Nezha pretty decently myself after I met her in the Wandering Sea.

Captain: It's true that I was interested in how her mechanical body was made with sage arts, but I also felt like we were similar somehow.

Captain: ...So I know that Nezha was a great warrior,and an upstanding Servant.

Captain: I'm sure she was prepared for this, much more than she needed to be. She would never want you guys to be so sad about her that you stopped moving forward.

Mash: ...Yes. You're right...

Captain: Let me just ask you one thing.... Did she die in vain?

Karna: Not at all. The enemy's sheer mobility was like few things I have ever seen.

Karna: If Nezha hadn't come in contact with them first, they might have taken us by surprise and critically injured all of us.

Captain: ...If that's what you think, Hero of Benefaction,then it must be true.

Captain: Then when we get back, and I make my report to Sion,I'll tell her Nezha fulfilled her duties admirably.

Mash: ...I'm sorry. I'm okay now. Let's get back to work.

Holmes: Agreed. Now is not the time for you to worry about this other Nezha. We'll handle that analysis on our end.

Holmes: Although, one thing I did notice in your battle just now...

Holmes: ...was that she did not appear to be subject to this world's estrangement effect, as you are.

Holmes: So we may be able to learn more about that effect by focusing our efforts there.

Rama: This world's estrangement effect...That's a good way to put it. It does feel like we aren't truly in this world, even though we clearly are.

Da Vinci: Anyway, we won't have answers for you anytime soon, so I'd like you guys to keep going with your god search for now.

Rama: Then we'll do just that.

Rama: Come now, cheer up. King's orders. Moping around won't get us anywhere.

Rama: Sometimes, you have to say goodbye before you're ready, and others, you get to meet someone you never expected to. That's life.

Rama: Now come on, Master! We have a new god to meet!

Fujimaru 1: ...Yeah.

Fujimaru 2: Okay, let's go find them!

Fou: Fou!

Mash: Yes, Master. I promise to give this search my full effort!


Rama: All that aside. All that aside...

Rama: Where IS this god? I can sense something nearby,but I don't see them anywhere.

Rama: I've actually worked up a sweat from walking around so much. I think I'll take a little break here.

Rama: Aha, this rock should make a fine seat. There we go...


Rama: Wh-what in the world was that? It sounded like a pig squealing for its life.

???: I-I can't take it anymore! Fuhee! A beautiful boy's beautiful body, coming in direct contact with me!

???: Uh, I mean, never mind that. Ahem, testing, testing...

???: “How dare you, humans...mans...mans...Bow your heads before are in the presence of a god...od...od...”

???: “Leave here at once if you value your lives...ives...ives...Do that, and I promise your family will live in health, and your business will! ”

Rama: What the!? Did the rock just talk!?

Fou: Fou! Fo fo fo fou! (Special Translation: All right! Kill it with fire! )

???: “What was that? What a cheeky little animal you are, daring to challenge a god...Fuheehee, yes, I can understand you. Know why? 'Cause I'm a god! ”

???: “Very well then, if it's a fight you want, it's a fight you shall have...ave...ave...ave! Now leave all your money behind as an! ”


???: “Worship me...Praise me...Spoil me...Run to the convenience store and get me more ice cream so I can concentrate on grinding...”

Rama: ...Hey, Karna? This divine aura...It can't be what I think it is, can it...?

Karna: ......

Karna: Don't move, Rama. This won't take long.

???: Huh? Wha? Waaaaaah!?

D:???: H-hey, watch it! Do you have any idea what a close shave that was!?

D:???: Your spearhead was just a few centimeters away from making a yucky shish kebab out of my flab–

D:???: ...

Karna: ...

D:???: ...Karna? What're you doing here?

Karna: I was just about to ask you that. What are you doing here, ■■■■■■?

Fou: Fou...Foooooou!?


???: ...Karna? What're you doing here?

Karna: I was just about to ask you that. What are you doing here, ■■■■■■?

Fujimaru 1: There was a woman in there!?

???: Hey, there's no one in here! Pay no attention to the gal behind the curtain!

Fujimaru 2: You two know each other?

Karna: Hm? Did I just say something...?

Karna: ...What a strange feeling.

Karna: I have no idea why I said “I was just about to ask you that” or what it was I wanted to say afterwards.

Karna: ...This is all very unclear, even to me.

Karna: I've never met this woman before. And yet...And yet...

Karna: It's strange. I don't know how to describe this feeling. It feels as though I've just met the light of my life...

Karna: And like I've just encountered my big sister...And like I've just encountered my life coach...

Karna: And like I've just encountered someone who needs to be cared for and tended to, all at once...I'm afraid I don't know how else to put it.

???: ...

???: (Ahh, so that's what's going on. I guess that makes sense, since Karna's not a god...)

???: (So he just vaguely remembers his former Masters from other worlds. )

???: (...Oh well, can't help that now! 'Sides, nobody has to know as long as I keep my mouth shut! )

???: Hmm, hmm. So you feel like we're friends even though we've never met before, hm? What do you know, that's more or less how I feel too.

???: I get the feeling a lot of stuff's happened,but I can't seem to remember any of it clearly.

???: Hey, doesn't this remind you of one of those RPGs where the protag's got amnesia and a tortured past?

???: I wonder when we'll get to the cutscene where I awaken to my hidden power! Not that waking up is really all that high on my to-do list, really...

???: Personally, I prefer to hang out in the starter village and wait for someone else to defeat the final boss.

Mash: I see you're, um...a very unique person.

Karna: Wait. There is one thing I know for sure; you're human. But then, how are you cloaked in that divine aura?

???: Oh, that! Sorry Karna, but you got it all wrong!

???: I guess not even your vaunted sight managed to see all the way to the truth of the matter this time!

???: Meh heh heh. Me, human? Perish the thought.

???: I'll have you know I'm one of the best-known and most popular gods in the whole world! Just call me...Ganesha!

Fujimaru 1: ...

Fou: Fou...

A:Ganesha: Hey! Which one of you just called me Indian mythology's sideshow act!?

A:Ganesha: Look, I can understand why you'd do a double take at a gal with an elephant for a head, but my fame and divinity are the real deal!

A:Ganesha: So show me the respect I deserve, dammit!

Rama: Of course I respect Ganesha. And I can more or less tell that your divine aura is genuine.

Rama: But then there's this...other aura that couldn't be further from the divine...

Karna: Yes, that's it exactly, Rama. I'm impressed. It only took you a moment to see through this being's true nature.

A:Ganesha: Hey! You don't gotta be THAT impressed!

Holmes: From what you have said, the young lady appears to be a Pseudo-Servant with the Divine Spirit Ganesha as her core.

Holmes: Ganesha is known for many things, including wisdom, wealth, prosperity, fortune, business, and the removal of obstacles. Truly fascinating.

Da Vinci: Chaldea had its fair share of Divine Spirit Servants of all kinds...but this one looks to be much more like its vessel than the spirit inhabiting it.

Da Vinci: Think Zhuge Liang, only with a Divine Spirit instead of a Heroic one.

Mash: I've definitely heard the name “Ganesha” before, and I think I at least know the essentials about him.

Mash: His elephant head is probably his most famous aspect, and he's also said to be the son of Shiva's wife, Pārvatī.

Mash: It's too bad Pārvatī's not here with us. Then you could have had a nice mother-child reunion.

A:Ganesha: Geh. She's around too?

Mash: Oh, not right now. I was just speaking hypothetically.... Do you not wish to see her?

A:Ganesha: Oh, well, it's not like I'd mind or anything...

A:Ganesha: I just really don't care for the way she always blurts out whatever she's thinking.

A:Ganesha: While I'm at it, would it have killed her to give birth to me in a more normal way?

A:Ganesha: As for my old papan, well...

A:Ganesha: He's the guy who cut off my head and figured everything would be fine if he just stuck an elephant's in its place.

A:Ganesha: So I'm not sure I'd really know what to say if I ran into him now...

A:Ganesha: Basically, even I, Ganesha, might start freaking out a bit if both my parents were here.

A:Ganesha: Though I do still respect them. I think.

Mash: I see. That sounds...complicated...

Goredolf: Oh for...! I've had just about enough of this!

Goredolf: Well done on finding a Divine Spirit Servant, but you didn't come all this way to waste time on meaningless drivel!

A:Ganesha: Who's this fa–Ahem, stout old guy?

Goredolf: You were about to say “fat,” weren't you!?

A:Ganesha: Well, I'm a god, so I figured I'd show some mercy and not diss you at our first meeting.

Goredolf: Is that so! Well how bloody kind of you! Frankly, you're the last one here who should be commenting on my physique!

Karna: ...Does this mean you now have a friend with whom you can discuss fitness?

Karna: Hmm. This may be cause for celebration.

A:Ganesha: What're you talking about!? I don't wanna celebrate anything like that!

Karna: At any rate, that man is something like the supervisor of my current Master, Fujimaru.

Goredolf: Damn right I am! I'm not just a noble with a bit of extra girth. I'm the leader of this entire operation.

Goredolf: You're a Rogue Servant, are you not? Then be a good lass and help us out!

A:Ganesha: Whaaat? You wanna make me work?

A:Ganesha: Hard pass. Ninja vanish!

Mash: Ah! She went back inside that statue.

Rama: We need all the help we can get to keep the nearby village safe.

Rama: Especially now that we've just lost one of our most capable allies.

Mash: ...

Ganesha: It sounds like you guys have it rough...

Ganesha: But, sorry, I can't help. If you need someone to help you fight, you'd better try some other god.

Ganesha: Honestly, I don't wanna fight even a little bit. I'm just gonna hang out in here and keep enjoying my sweet, sweet shut-in life.

Ganesha: It's actually way more comfortable in here than it looks. It's got cushioning out the wazoo, and of course it's fully air-conditioned.

Ganesha: I can even manifest handheld game consoles in here thanks to my mysterious godly powers of wealth.

Ganesha: There's nothing like a good roguelike for killing time. I could play those for hours on end...

Karna: She is stubborn. I know from experience how hard it can be to get her to act. At least, I think I do.

Karna: Master, would you happen to know if there are any stores around here that sell Swiss rolls?

Fujimaru 1: Why Swiss rolls?

Karna: ...I was speaking figuratively.

Karna: I only meant that I have some idea of how to handle her.

Fujimaru 1: If you've got a way to convince her to help us, go for it.

Karna: Understood. Then I will drag her out of there by force.

Mash: It's not the most diplomatic solution, but for some reason, I get the sense that we would actually be doing her a favor...

Rama: Indeed. This is how we usually handle gods who refuse to listen to reason.

Ganesha: No way! My butt shall not leave these cushions! I'm warning you, anyone who tries to mess with my shut-in lifestyle's in for a SERIOUSLY bad day!

Mash: It's still hard for me to believe she's a god when she says things like that...but we can't afford to back down now.

Mash: I'll help Karna try to get her outside as peacefully as possible!

Ganesha: Fuhaha, you fools! Our earlier battle was just a demo! Now, witness Ganesha's full power!


Ganesha: Nooo! My paradise suit...

Karna: Well done. It's good for your health to get outside and exercise now and then.

Ganesha: Gnnn, why do you have to be so boring and right all the time, Karna? Who do you think you are, my dad!? My mom!?

Karna: How strange. I'm certain I have no connection to Ganesha, yet I find myself inexorably compelled to help you.

Karna: ...Was I a fan of Ganesha back when I was alive?

Ganesha: ...

Goredolf: Hahaha, so we've won? We've won, right?

Goredolf: Then since we now hold your life in our hands, you're going to cooperate with us whether you like it or not!

Ganesha: Ugh, this freakin' guy again.

Ganesha: You know, the way you just expect I'm gonna go along with whatever you say reminds me of a teacher I had back in middle school. I really hated that guy.

Ganesha: Maybe your fat ass needs a bit of divine retribution for abusing your authority.

Fujimaru 1: Listen, I just want to talk. Will you hear what we have to say?

Ganesha: Hmm. Well, I do feel a kind of kinship with you, seeing as you look to be the only other [♂ Average Joe /♀ Plain Jane] here.

Ganesha: So I guess I can at least hear you out. 'Specially since it doesn't look like Karna's gonna give up anytime soon.

Ganesha: Besides, if I'm being honest, I still don't fully get what's going on around here anyway.

Ganesha: So, what is it you wanna talk about?

Ganesha: The world's been bleached clean...Trees of Emptiness...And Lostbelts...?

Ganesha: I see...All right, I get the gist. Sounds like things are even rougher for you guys than I thought.

Ganesha: Although...You...

Fujimaru 1: Hm?

Ganesha: You're actually the most important part of your operation! What gives!? I thought you were a fellow[♂ Average Joe /♀ Plain Jane], turncoat!

Mash: Yes, [♂ he /♀ she] is. Senpai may only be ranked as a standard-class Master, but [♂ his /♀ her] accomplishments easily meet or exceed those of an A-rank mage.

Mash: I would be happy to elaborate, but I'm afraid that to do so adequately would require me to write at least a five-hundred page report...

Mash: ...and it would unfortunately be a little difficult to do that now.

Ganesha: Hmm, you don't seem like you can tell a joke with a straight face...You're serious, aren't you? Yikes.

Rama: You're the vessel for a Divine Spirit now. Doesn't that mean you are also anything but ordinary?

Karna: .........

Ganesha: Oh come on, Karna! You could at least pretend to back me up here!

Ganesha: ...On second thought, never mind. You'd just say something like “She was never ordinary. Her unusual weight and waistline clearly set her apart. ”

Ganesha: And the worst part is, you wouldn't even be saying it to be mean!

Karna: How did you know? Perhaps you truly were worthy to be chosen by Ganesha...

Karna: ...No, wait. Something tells me that can't possibly be the case...

Holmes: All that aside, I do have to wonder: Why were you summoned to this Lostbelt?

Ganesha: Why was I summoned? Believe me, I've been asking myself the same question.

Ganesha: I think it was kind of a “You have been choseeen” deal? Like, the Ganesha inside me showed up and said something like:

Ganesha: “Save the world, hero of the digital realm...If diversity is Proper Human History's greatest strength, then even someone like you can do this...”

Ganesha: “Now is the time for you to spread your wings...And since this is a request from my mother, not doing so is not an option...”

Ganesha: "Be warned: If you fail to save the world,you will never return to the way you were..."

Ganesha: So, yeah, Ganesha seems to be a pretty nice god,and he's definitely an Indian one at heart.

Ganesha: Oh, and don't bother asking me about my class. I'm not quite sure what it is, either.

Ganesha: I think that might be 'cause Ganesha found me through some sort of devilish intermediary or something?

Da Vinci: Yeah, I don't know what to make of this Extra class either...

Da Vinci: But we can worry about that later.

Da Vinci: At any rate, it seems pretty clear that the Counter Force summoned her here automatically.

Da Vinci: So it seems like a safe bet that she'll end up joining our side.

Ganesha: But why'd Ganesha choose me of all people? I'm just an unemployed shut-in with excess padding.

Ganesha: If it were up to me, I'd be demanding an explanation from him and requesting he choose someone else immediately.

Ganesha: 'Course, I guess that's kinda moot now that I'M Ganesha.

Karna: I think it comes down to compatibility.

Karna: You may be an ordinary person, but you are an ordinary person with some exceptional qualities.

Karna: I may not remember why I know that,but I do know that for certain.

Ganesha: ...Th-there you go saying things like that with a straight face again! Hmph!

Fou: Fo fooou...

Karna: That goes for you too, Fujimaru.

Karna: I'm not good with words, so I can't explain it well, but you have many exceptional qualities. You may not be a great warrior or a powerful mage, but you are a great Master.

Fujimaru 1: Th-thanks.

Fujimaru 2: C-come on, you're gonna make me blush...

Ganesha: Anyhoo, even if I don't like it, I figured now that I'm here, there must be something I'm meant to do.

Ganesha: So I took a look around and happened upon that town, but it couldn't have been more idyllic. We're talking “THIS is what world peace looks like” peaceful.

Ganesha: Even a shut-in like me couldn't help but admire the fields of flowers and find this world beautiful.

Ganesha: So I figured there was nothing for me to do after all, and Ganesha must've messed up and sent me to the right place at the wrong time or something.

Ganesha: So I came back here and've been enjoying my lazy NEET life ever since.

Ganesha: The end! Well? If you got a problem with that, then bring it on!

Holmes: Tell me, how long ago were you summoned? When did you pay the town a visit?

Ganesha: Hmm...I'd say about five days ago on both counts.

Da Vinci: Okay, so according to what Asha told us...that would be back during the first yuga, Kṛta Yuga.

Da Vinci: Were the buildings broken back then?

Ganesha: Uh, no? It was a perfectly neat little town. Not so much as a brick out of place.

Mash: Then the destruction we saw must have all happened over the last five days, thanks to the kali...

Rama: That was a little–no, incredibly careless of you, Ganesha.

Rama: If you had only stayed there, you would have had every chance to fulfill your divine duties and save the townspeople.

Ganesha: H-hey, whaddaya expect? There wasn't a single thing wrong with the place back then...

Mash: What's done is done. There's no point dwelling on the past. Right now, we need to worry about tomorrow.

Mash: ...We just lost a friend of ours a short while ago.

Mash: I miss her terribly...but I'll never forget how determined she was to keep fighting.

Mash: So I feel like we need to carry on in her stead, and keep moving on.

Mash: Which is why we need your help.

Mash: Will you please join us, Ganesha?

Ganesha: (Sigh)...I didn't even think gods were real before, and now, I AM one.

Ganesha: It's still hard to believe this is happening. Part of me's convinced it's all just a big mistake.

Ganesha: But, it does look like I've got a quest to save the world now...

Ganesha: And if there's a branch where a town gets attacked open now, I guess I can't just sit back and watch.

Ganesha: ...Fine, I'll go with you, all right? Just don't expect me to be much help in battle!

Goredolf: Harrumph. You could have saved us all a lot of time if you'd just agreed to help us from the beginning...

Mash: Thank you, Ganesha. I'm so glad you'll be helping us!

Da Vinci: Okay guys, it's gonna be dark soon, and we don't want to be out and about in an unfamiliar land at night.

Da Vinci: So I say we go back to the cave and make camp there until morning.

Da Vinci: We'll head out again at the first sign of daybreak. Make sure you all get plenty of rest!

Section 4: Kali Yuga/The Demon of the End

Koyanskaya: Nngh.

Koyanskaya: Nnngh.

Koyanskaya: Nnnghhh...!

Koyanskaya: Argh, this is ridiculous! Even I can tell something's off about me!

Koyanskaya: Thinking back on it, I haven't been my usual spiteful self ever since Qin Shi Huang captured me...

Koyanskaya: If I'd just planted a bomb or three when I snuck onto the Shadow Border, and blown everyone to kingdom come...

Koyanskaya: ...I could've spent the rest of my time on a leisurely tour of the Lostbelts...I swear, what was I thinking?

Koyanskaya: ...No, no, I shouldn't dwell on it.

Koyanskaya: No capable woman would let what she did or didn't do in the past stop her in the present!

Koyanskaya: I'm just going to focus on business here! Once I get in my groove, I'll get my old spite back in no time flat.

Koyanskaya: I'll just check in on the Tree of Emptiness's growth now and then, and devote most of my time to seeing what sorts of wonderful creatures I can find in this boring old world.

Koyanskaya: Still...Kali, huh.

Koyanskaya: This works out nicely for me. They're just the sort of thing that makes abandoning a Lostbelt worthwhile.

Koyanskaya: China's regime was so ridiculously strict and thorough about getting rid of anything it didn't like that there was nothing left for me to have fun with...

Koyanskaya: But here, I can get back to my roots and really mess with everything humans love. Chaldea just adores that sort of thing.

Koyanskaya: This world is very hospitable to human life, but also extremely strict about virtue and goodness.

Koyanskaya: If a human strays from the path even once, their god's law won't even let them reincarnate anymore.

Koyanskaya: Ahh, that's what I love about boring, single-minded gods. They're as cruel and merciless as they come.

Koyanskaya: Still, I don't much care for this world's god,or that shitty monk and his creepy-ass grin...

Koyanskaya: I think I can spare some time to mess with them while I take care of business!

Koyanskaya: Maybe I'll take one of those blissfully ignorant humans and wrench the smile from their face juuust a tiny bit.

Koyanskaya: Hehehe, why, I'd bet that's exactly what some people actually want.

Koyanskaya: And walking the line between supply and demand is an important service in its own right♡

Ganesha: Hmm. So you're always on the lookout for this Sita person, huh?

Rama: Yes, I am. If you happen to see her anywhere, please let me know right away.... You don't know what she looks like? Not a problem.

Rama: If you ever see the greatest woman in the world–one so beautiful and graceful with inner strength that could move mountains–and think she would be perfect as my wife, you'll know you've found Sita.

Ganesha: I, uh, I see...Hmm...

Ganesha: I still like the whole hot shota king thing you've got going on, but knowing you've already got a canon ship makes it a lot harder to fantasize about you.

Ganesha: I'm sure some people wouldn't let it hold them back, but somehow, I'm not really into that.

Ganesha: Oh well, guess I'll just have to keep my fantasies to a minimum and enjoy gazing on some hot Rama flesh in real life!

Rama: I am...not sure what you're talking about...Some kind of protective spell? In that case, I will gladly accept it.

Karna: ...

Da Vinci: On a different subject, you guys are outside now, right? What's it look like?

Rama: Something has seemed off to me since this morning. No, not just off. It's...outright strange.

Fujimaru 1: Pretty sure there was a lot more water around here.

Fujimaru 2: Pretty sure there were a lot more flowers around here.

Mash: That's true. The change in the environment is even more drastic than I was expecting.

Mash: The ground is dry and barren, the wind is much stronger and foul-smelling, the plants are all dead or dying...Everything is so different from yesterday.

Mash: Maybe this area drains really easily, so all the sunlight it got yesterday dried it up?

Rama: I didn't think it was that bright out,but who can say with a strange land like this.

Ganesha: And then there's the weather. It's not sunny, or cloudy, or rainy...If anything, it's kind of...sandy?

Karna: Whatever the cause, this area is clearly much more arid than it was yesterday.

Karna: The ground is so dry it's begun to crack,exposing the minerals and ore underground.

Da Vinci: That much environmental change in a single day, huh...

Da Vinci: There's gotta be something particular to this Lostbelt that's responsible for this.

Da Vinci: We'll just have to ask Asha or someone when we get the chance.

Mash: Still, looking around here...

Mash: Does it make anyone else uncomfortable,or is it just me?

Mash: It's like...I can't sense much in the way of life now.

Mash: Compared to yesterday, it feels like everything's cold and inhospitable, if not outright hostile...

Karna: I agree. The air is even drier today.

Karna: It feels as though there is something else in this world now...Something besides the mysterious presence that has been holding us back since we first came here.

Karna: It may not be likely to harm us outright, but it could still interfere with our ability to fight.

Karna: I recommend you keep that in mind, Master.

Fujimaru 1: What do you mean?

Karna: ...I mean that there is a difference between fighting in a blessed paradise, and fighting in a cursed place of death.

Karna: Though of course, a true warrior remains strong regardless of their environment.

Fujimaru 1: I see...Thanks, I'll be careful.

Karna: seems we now have a good chance to put that to the test.

Mash: It's a pack of wild beasts. We can't have them following us to the town. Let's take care of them now!

Mash: It may be colder and dry today, but that also means we won't have to worry about our footing, since there isn't any more mud.

Mash: Mash “Always Look on the Bright Side” Kyrielight, heading out!


Ganesha: Hmm, I guess I am a little heavier today than I was yesterday. Though it might just be that I ate too much breakfast.

Karna: ...

Ganesha: Something wrong?

Karna: No...I was just thinking how strange it is to be fighting alongside you–or rather, Ganesha.

Ganesha: ...You mean, in a bad way?

Karna: Not at all. I feel oddly elevated. I'm very, happy for you.

Ganesha: ...Hehe. Gotcha.

Karna: Though it's also oddly painful that I don't know why I feel that way.

Karna: Part of me is compelled to talk to you...and part of me is compelled to stay away.

Karna: I'm certain I know you somehow, but for some reason,I can't remember anything specific.

Ganesha: ...

Karna: ...Is something wrong?

Ganesha: No, no, nothing's wrong. I was just thinking the same thing.

Ganesha: (I know, Ganesha. There are rules and etiquette about that sort of thing. )

Ganesha: (Even if it was all a big mistake, I'm still a divine vessel now. I'm not gonna try to weasel out of this. )

Ganesha: (...Besides, that would just make things harder for Karna. Yeah, I kinda...okay, really wish I could tell him the truth, but I won't! )

Ganesha: (Besides, I feel pretty lucky just getting to fight on the same team as him! )

Ganesha: Oh, by the way...Since I was technically sent here to save the world, let me just make sure I've got this straight.

Ganesha: You said we've basically got three enemies to deal with in this Lostbelt, right?

Ganesha: One of them's the Tree of Emptiness. If we cut this down, the whole Lostbelt goes away.

Ganesha: Another's the king, sort of the being at the center of this Lostbelt. They keep the Tree of Emptiness safe...probably.

Ganesha: And last is the Crypter, a Master who wants the Lostbelt to grow bigger instead of go away.

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, pretty much.

Fujimaru 2: There's also the Foreign God's Disciples, but otherwise, yeah.

Ganesha: Hmm, hmm. So the most important thing's the Tree of Emptiness then. That's it way off in the distance there, right?

Ganesha: Basically, we've just gotta cut it down and we're done, right? So why aren't we heading there now?

Mash: Every Lostbelt king we've faced so far has been incredibly powerful.

Mash: And if we get close to the Tree of Emptiness,I'm sure we'll run into the one here too.

Mash: We may be able to see the tree from here, but it's far too dangerous to approach it now. We need to at least gather more information first.

Da Vinci: Oh yeah, I almost forgot. What do you make of that giant floating cube over there? A local we talked to called it “God's Skyboulder. ”

Ganesha: Oh, that? I was wondering what its deal was too,but I got absolutely nothing.

Ganesha: I don't have a better word for it than “mysterious. ” It just feels like something impossibly out of my reach.

Ganesha: Kind of like unlocking an analysis skill on my skill tree!

Karna: It's not just that boulder. We still know next to nothing about this entire world.

Da Vinci: Yeah...It's definitely not her fault, but I don't feel great about having Asha be our sole source of information, either.

Da Vinci: We still need to talk to all sorts of people to find out anything we can on the king, the Tree of Emptiness, and God's Skyboulder.

Da Vinci: That's another reason why it's worth taking the time to defend that town. Make sense, Gordy?

Goredolf: Why are you looking at me!? I didn't say a word! But if you're going to do this, then make sure you do it well.

Goredolf: There will be no secret hero nonsense on my watch. I want you to put these people so far in your debt they'll be begging you to let them help!

Da Vinci: Oho, it's not like you to be so forthcoming, Gordy! It's a good look for–

Da Vinci: Huh!? These readings...!

Da Vinci: Hey, you guys should be in viewing distance of the town by now, right? Can you see anything?

Rama: We can. Something's not right here, Master.

Karna: I can see smoke coming from that direction.... The attack must have already begun.

Fujimaru 1: Come on, let's hurry!

Fou: Fou, fooou!?

Fujimaru 1: Oh no...!

Mash: This is terrible...

Ganesha: No way. This place was so nice just a few days ago. How did this happen?

Karna: The first wave must have already gotten here. I thought we had gotten here as soon as we could...but it seems I was careless yet again.

Asha: Ah.

Ajai: You guys came back, huh.

Mash: I'm glad you two are both okay!

Asha: Y-yeah, we are! Although...

Ajai: Damn ulloo. Today's Kali Yuga. We're not done by a long shot.

Asha: Yeah...There's gonna be even more kali today.

Asha: So many you'd jump outta your skin in surprise. And today, they could show up anytime.

Rama: I remember you said there were more kali during Kali Yuga...but this is far more than I expected.

Karna: They're clearly going to keep destroying more of the town. How are you going to survive their attack?

Asha: I know...Our house was destroyed too. But we've gotta do something.

Asha: Maybe we'll ask someone to let us stay in their house, or hide in the rubble...Or just run away.

Asha: We'll just have to keep praying and do the best we can.

Ajai: ...Hmph.

G:???: You again!? What are you doing here!?

Mash: Mayor...We saw that your town has already suffered significant damage. Couldn't you and the other townspeople work together and let us help you fight off the kali.

Prakash: Don't be ridiculous. How many times do I have to tell you? This is all our god's will. It's a trial he's set before us!

Prakash: There's no need for us to fight. As long as we pray with sincerity, the sacred beasts will save us!

Prakash: Having blasphemers with no intention of praying like you lot around will leave a stain on this entire town.

Prakash: You can't be here, you shouldn't be here, and we don't want you here! Now go away and leave us alone!

Ganesha: Which god're you talking about?

Prakash: What do you mean, which god!? God is god!

Prakash: There's only been one god ever since he made this world during the first yuga long ago!

Holmes: (There it is again. He believes what he says with absolute conviction. At first I thought this town just happened to practice monotheism...)

Holmes: (But does this mean there really is only a single god in this world? )

Holmes: (Could they be this Lostbelt's–)

Prakash: Aah, they're back! I'll just have to forget about the heretics for now...!

Prakash: O god, I pray to you now with the greatest sincerity! I've fulfilled my duties as this town's mayor! Please, lend me your protection!

Asha: Oh, Auntie.

J:Aunt: Asha! Ajai! I finally managed to convince my husband to let you in! Come on, you can pray in our house this time!

Ajai: Thanks. Come on, Asha.

Asha: Wait! I have to carry Vihan!

Vihan: (Whiiine...)

Mash: Please be careful, Asha!

Rama: Yes, make sure you are well hidden. I'm sorry your house was destroyed, but I can at least help you rebuild it when this is over.

Rama: In fact, I can even have the animals in the nearby woods come and help with but a single call to action.

Asha: Thanks! But that's okay. This yuga's almost about to cycle over!

Rama: ...?

Asha: You guys all be careful too!

Ganesha: (Sigh) Things are worse here than I thought. This looks like one of those post nuclear apocalypse RPGs or something. It's even worse because I know what it was supposed to look like.

Karna: Unfortunately, if we don't fight back now,the destruction will only get worse.

Karna: Look. They're here.

Ganesha: So those're the kali...Yup, they definitely look like Indian demons. Not that I have any idea what Indian demons look like.

Goredolf: Are you sure you're an Indian god!?

Rama: There are even more of them now than there were yesterday. I'm counting on you, child of Pārvatī.

Ganesha: Whoa, whoa, don't do that. Fending off wild beasts is one thing, but I have zero confidence when it comes to fighting actual demons.

Ganesha: When you get right down to it, I'm just a shut-in who's never had a job in her life. There's no way I can live up to expectations like that...

Karna: It may have been brief, but I did fight you myself. I have a fair idea of what you are capable of.

Karna: Your power is perfectly adequate. You should be more than capable of fighting alongside us.

Karna: Rama and I will both be trusting you to watch our backs.

Ganesha: ...

Ganesha: (Sigh) Well, technically, I guess I am Ganesha now.

Ganesha: And I know old Elephant Head's gonna be upset with me if I don't show off his godly side at least a little bit.

Ganesha: So okay, fine! I obviously don't have a choice,so I'll do it already!

Ganesha: If any baddies think they can get past this wall of divinely protected flab, they're welcome to try!

Mash: I'm glad you're willing to help.

Mash: Both the Ortinax's hardware and software are working fine. For this fight, I'll be prioritizing long-term stability over explosive output.

Mash: We're up against a lot of enemies, Master,but let's do our best to push them back!


Ganesha: Guuuh, there's so many of them! This is exhausting! Can I take a break now?

Fou: Fooou, fou fou!

Ganesha: (Sniff) What's that? Why do I have all these excess energy stores (read: fat) if I'm not going to use them?

Ganesha: Okay, okay! I'll hang in there a little longer!

Karna: ...Now those creatures have shown up too. Things are about to get even busier for us.

Rama: So the sacred beasts are now here as well. We'll just have to try and get them to focus on the kali as much as possible. If any of them come after us, we'll have no choice but to take them out.

Mash: Right. The Ortinax's output is holding steady, even after prolonged operation. I can keep going, no problem.

Mash: All right, here comes the next wave of enemies, Master!


Ganesha: (Huff...huff...) That's the last of–

Ganesha: Nooo, they're still coming! Nobody told me this was gonna be a horde mode where you can't even grind out any EXP!

Rama: At least they're coming in waves, so we've been able to keep them at bay...but it does feel like we've been fighting them forever.

Holmes: Given how the townspeople aren't any less fearful now...I'm afraid I'm forced to come to an unfortunate conclusion.

Holmes: I suspect the kali attack is going to continue for the entire rest of the day.

Fujimaru 1: Great...

Fujimaru 2: Just what I didn't want to hear...

Holmes: I do apologize. Much as I have a reputation for beating around the bush, nothing could be further from the truth.

Holmes: When certain truths need be spoken, I have no compunctions about doing so right away, regardless of how unpleasant they may be to hear.

Karna: No matter. Our task is to continue to fight until our enemies are vanquished. If that means we must fight on until dusk or dawn, then so be it.

Karna: Though that's not to say you should keep fighting with us, Master. Please take some rest whenever you must. It would be bad for all of us if you were to collapse from exhaustion.

Fujimaru 1: Don't worry. I'm making sure to pace myself.

Fujimaru 2: I'm okay. I've actually been slacking off more than you'd think.

Rama: Excellent posturing, Master! Very inspirational! That said, this battle has become a true war of attrition.

Rama: As long as things continue like this, I think we'll be able to prevent any further casualties.

Ganesha: Oh, for...Just so you know, Rama, that is exactly the sort of thing you absolutely DO NOT SAY unless you want things to suddenly get much, much worse.

Ganesha: There...I knew it.

Ganesha: Ganesha can feel something coming.

Prakash: Is that...Could it be...

Prakash: ...the new agent of god I've been hearing rumors about...!?

Karna: That's...

Da Vinci: It's not the other Nezha...It's a new Servant we haven't seen before. Be careful, guys!

???: The hell!? I knew I sensed an unfamiliar divine aura around here, but I sure as hell wasn't expecting this!

???: What is this bullshit? This is pissing me the hell off...What do you think you're doing here, Karna!?

Karna: ...Hello, Aśvatthāman.

Fujimaru 1: You know each other!?

Fujimaru 2: Is he an Indian hero too?

Karna: That's right. His name is Aśvatthāman.

Karna: I fought for the Kauravas alongside this brave warrior during the Kurukshetra War.

Karna: He is the son of Droṇa, my mentor, under whom we both trained. He is both my friend, and–

Aśvatthāman: And right now, I'm your enemy, Karna.

Karna: ...

Ganesha: Wh-wh-what do you mean!? Didn't you just say he was your friend, Karna!?

Karna: I spoke the truth.

Karna: But now, he and I are both Servants bound to obey our Masters' orders.

Karna: If our Masters are at odds with one another,then of course that makes us enemies.

Aśvatthāman: Yeah, exactly! It's so damn obvious it's maddening! I couldn't agree more, dammit!

Ganesha: Guh. Is he always this angry?

Ganesha: He looks like he's gonna be as tough to communicate with as Karna, though for real different reasons.

Ganesha: Bros and punks are the hardest kinds of people for shut-ins to deal with...

Karna: That's just how he is...Though I do think he used to be a little more...ah, composed.

Karna: By the way, Aśvatthāman, who is your Master now?

Aśvatthāman: Ha! Just hearing you ask that pisses me off. You'll figure that out soon enough.

Karna: ...?

Meunière: We already ran into a Master candidate here. Maybe he's Peperoncino's Servant too?

Holmes: I'm not so sure.

Holmes: Strictly speaking, we still have no evidence that the other Nezha we met is Peperoncino's Servant either.

Da Vinci: Never mind who his Master is for now. We've got more than enough to digest just by having a new Servant to deal with.

Da Vinci: Well, since he's showing up now, there's not much question as to why he's here.

Aśvatthāman: That ALSO pisses me off. 'Course it's obvious. I can't let you lot run around doing whatever the hell you want.

Goredolf: Khh, now we've got to fight another Servant too!? Oi, Karna! Don't you dare go easy on him just because you know him!

Karna: ...Do you really think I would?

Goredolf: Eep!

Da Vinci: Sorry about that! I think Gordy just forgot who he was talking to!

Captain: ...I'm getting bored just sitting around doing nothing, so I think I'll speak up too.

Captain: I know Karna already told you who Aśvatthāman is, but his perspective is colored by having known him in life.

Captain: Since I only know of him from the Mahabharata...

Captain: ...let me give you one more piece of objective information about how Aśvatthāman is depicted there.

Captain: In the Mahabharata, he's said to be just as strong as Karna, if not stronger. careful.

Ganesha: Whaaa...? You mean this guy's actually on Karna's level?

Karna: I won't deny that. I was never the strongest warrior, even back when I was studying under Droṇa.

Rama: Then we should not even consider going easy on him. We'll need to keep our guard up at all times.

Da Vinci: Exactly. Be extra careful when facing him, guys!

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Mash: This is clearly no time to be worried about conserving energy. Switching Ortinax over to Anti-Servant combat mode.

Mash: Armored Shielder Mash Kyrielight,preparing to engage in full-powered combat!

Mash: Awaiting your orders, Master!

Aśvatthāman: ...Oh, I'm mad as hell.

Aśvatthāman: Now that I'm a Servant, anger's the only thing I feel. My whole Spirit Origin is built on it.

Aśvatthāman: So even though I haven't fought you since we last crossed swords while training under my old man, Karna...

Aśvatthāman: I feel no nostalgia. No joy. The only thing I have, the only thing I feel–the only thing I AM rage!


Mash: ...!

Rama: Now I see. I can indeed tell for myself that you and Karna studied under the same master!

Aśvatthāman: Yeah!? Freakin' infuriates me to admit it,but you're not bad yourself, brat.

Aśvatthāman: In fact, you kind of remind me of someone. Parashurama...? Or maybe Krishna?

Rama: I can see why you'd think that. Those two are avatars of Vishnu, just as I am. I am Rama, King of Kosala!

Aśvatthāman: Ha. That so? Well, let me give you a little tip.

Aśvatthāman: In this Lostbelt, I wouldn't go around bragging about being the avatar of a god. You might not like what happens.

Mash: What do you mean by–

Holmes: Hold it! Something else is headed your way! It's not reading like a kali or a sacred beast!

Holmes: Wait, this–these are Servants! And not just one! There are several!

E:???: ...Hehe. Looks like you're out of time, Aśvatthāman.

Nezha: Recommendation: Cease this game. It is meaningless.

G:???: I concur. There's no point to your game, or in us being here. I swear, I don't even know why we came along at all.

Fujimaru 1: ...!!!

Section 5: Kali Yuga/A Revolving World

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Mash: Master, get back!

Mash: There are two Servants I've never seen before, and...

Nezha: ...

Mash: I guess that other Nezha was on the enemy's side after all...

Mash: We already know how strong she is. Be very careful not to let your guard down, Master.

D:???: Whoa there, slow down, girlie. We're not here to fight.

Mash: !?

Aśvatthāman: Tch...You guys piss me off! First you make me come all this way to see what's up, then you just show up anyway!?

Holmes: So they are Aśvatthāman's allies. But, why would so many Servants band together like this...?

Nezha: Anger: Unnecessary. We need only obey him.

G:???: We haven't sensed Indian gods here in a long time. I don't blame him for being interested, even if it's pointless.

Ganesha: Uh, why're they looking at me like that? I haven't done anything wrong aside from eating like a pi–uh, elephant.

Da Vinci: Fujimaru, are you seeing this? Or rather, not seeing it?

Fujimaru 1: Yeah. The kali and sacred beasts are all gone.

Da Vinci: Yup! I think we might've just accomplished our initial goal of keeping this town safe, so that's cause for celebration.

Da Vinci: Though maybe not too much, since we've now got new,much more difficult obstacles instead.

Mash: If you aren't here to fight, then why are you here?

D:???: Didn't we mention it? We're accompanying him. He told us to come along, so we did. That's all there is to it.

Rama: This “him” you speak of...Is he your Master?

Nezha: ...

D:???: Hmm, something like that. Or close enough, anyway.

D:???: Either way, it's only natural we'd obey him.

D:???: After all, he's the only god here. The one, final god.

D:???: Look, here he comes!

Holmes: This reading...! Actually, I'm sure you can all see this as well.

Holmes: Look up in the sky!

Da Vinci: Yeah, I think you Indian heroes might just recognize that. We know what it is too.

Da Vinci: Though the only time we saw someone riding it,it was the decidedly non-Indian King of Heroes.

Da Vinci: It's both a flying chariot, and a ship. A floating palace that serves as transport for the gods that's said to even be capable of ascending into space...

Karna: ...A white Vimana!?

Rama: Who's that riding it? ...Is that...?

Karna: He looks different, but I still recognize his face. I would never mistake him for anyone else.

Karna: So, I can say with certainty...

Karna: That is Arjuna.

Fujimaru 1: Arjuna!? Really!?

Holmes: Not the one recorded in Chaldea, of course. He must have an altogether different Spirit Origin here...

B:???: ...No.

B:???: Once...I may have been Arjuna...But now...

B:???: I am a god.

Rama: What's going on!? It feels hair is standing on end!

Ganesha: Y-yeah, I feel it too...I-I don't know what's up with that, but I'm getting chills...

Ganesha: B-but I do know that no good guy would ever go around introducing himself as a god!

Ganesha: With the obvious exception of Ganesha,since he's the real deal!

God Arjuna: So, beings with...divine power...have come from the outside. An avatar of Vishnu, a child of Pārvatī, and...

Karna: ...

God Arjuna: ...Karna, son of Surya...So that is all of you.

Fujimaru 1: Don't forget about us normal humans.

Mash: That's right. The Master of Chaldea and [♂ his /♀ her] Servant are here as well.

Fou: Fou, fou!

Aśvatthāman: Ha. He usually wouldn't even look at you if you're not gods.

Aśvatthāman: But you guys are idiots. So idiotic it's infuriating. Thanks to that, now he's noticed you, too.

Aśvatthāman: Which means you guys are done for.

D:???: Well, now that you've come all this way to see them for yourself, what do you think?

God Arjuna: ...Nothing.

I:???: Huh?

God Arjuna: This ended up more than a fleeting diversion.

God Arjuna: I thought...I might feel something...But...there was nothing.

God Arjuna: To me, as I am now...all these...foreign elements I see below me...

God Arjuna: ...are equally defective, immature, and worthless.

Karna: ...!

God Arjuna: They do not belong in a perfect world...In that sense...they are evil.

God Arjuna: God has witnessed defective beings. God has witnessed evil...

God Arjuna: They have no the next yuga...

D:???: Welp, there he goes. I guess he's not going to give us any orders then?

Nezha: Conclusion: Impossible. Futile. Meaningless. Nothing and no one can break his concentration. We'll just have to wait.

I:???: Man, this really was a waste of time. I knew I should've just ignored all this and kept going with my research.

I:???: ...Yeah, yeah, I know that means I'd be gone in the next yuga. I just wanted to vent.

Fujimaru 1: What's going on?

Meunière: Crap, crap, crap! Arjuna's gathering an unbelievable amount of energy around him!

Holmes: Indeed. The sheer energy for this Noble Phantasm–if it can even be called that–is like nothing I have ever seen.

Holmes: In fact, several of our sensors have been overloaded while trying to measure it...!

Goredolf: Wh-wh-what!? That can't possibly be good! Hurry up and do something!

Karna: Hear me, Arjuna. You think I'm defective? Immature? Worthless?

God Arjuna: ...

Karna: Look at me. Look me in the eye, take up your arms,and pay attention, Arjuna.

Karna: Otherwise this spear will be put to a cowardly use,and I don't want that.

God Arjuna: ...

Karna: Even after all that, you would still ignore me, Arjuna!?

Rama: Karna, I understand you two have a lot of history. And I'm sure there are rules you are bound to as warriors of Kuru.

Rama: But neither of those is true for me. As far as I'm concerned, he's already started this fight.

Rama: And as I'm sure you know, when I decide to do something, I do it, whether my enemies are paying attention to me or not.

Rama: Master! I'm going to use everything I've got to stop him. Requesting permission to release my Noble Phantasm!

Fujimaru 1: By all means!

Fujimaru 2: Permission granted! Now let him have it!

Rama: Brahmastra!!!

Ganesha: Uh, Rama? I think your NP might be bugging out,'cause it looked like it didn't work on him at all!

Rama: What!? That can't be! That blade even destroyed the great rakshasa, Ravana! How could it have–!?

Holmes: I understand your shock and confusion, but since we must rely on accurate information, let me be clear.

Holmes: Your Noble Phantasm did not so much as scratch him.

Holmes: Furthermore, he did not take any sort of defensive action against it. It simply failed to do anything to him.

Mash: That lines up with what I saw, too. Though I still can't believe it!

Holmes: At first I thought it might be an effect of the enormous amount of power he's concentrating near him, but that doesn't appear to be the case either.

Holmes: Which would mean he possesses some sort of anti-interference ability that not even Rama's Noble Phantasm can penetrate.

Holmes: But how is that possible...?

Rama: Be that as it may, we kings are notoriously stubborn. I could never hope to find Sita if I were to give up now.

Rama: I'm going to try again, and I won't hesitate to use anything or anyone. Help me, son of Surya!

Fujimaru 1: Please help him, Karna!

Karna: ...If that is your order, Master.

Goredolf: Hurry it up! Whatever's going on there, the pressure's still building! Now get a move on before it's too late!

Fujimaru 1: All right, this time, I want you both to–

I:???: Oh for...Can you really not see what's going on here?

Peperoncino: Forget it! It won't work!

Peperoncino: Don't take this the wrong way, but neither Ramie's nor Karnie's Noble Phantasms will have a chance against him!

Peperoncino: Trust me, he outclasses you guys in every way. After all...

Peperoncino: ...he's every Indian god rolled into one single superbeing!


Fujimaru 1: It's you!

Fou: Fou!?

Mash: Peperoncino!?

Peperoncino: Well, here we are–together again,and much sooner than I expected!

Peperoncino: I was going to just sit back and watch, but I just HAD to say something after seeing how utterly dense you are.

Peperoncino: We can talk more later, though. Right now, you need to skedaddle. Chop, chop!

Goredolf: What!? You're our enemy too! Why should we listen to anything you have to–

Peperoncino: Well, what if I told you that I was only up in those mountains because I was running from Nezha?

Peperoncino: And that Nezha only stopped fighting you guys because tracking me down was a higher priority?

Peperoncino: What I mean is that they are my enemies as much as yours!

Holmes: I see...So if that Arjuna is the Master of all those Servants, including Nezha...

Holmes: ...then our young Scandinavia Peperoncino can be the Master of none.

Holmes: There appears to be no evidence to the contrary, either...

Peperoncino: I really don't have time to lay it all out for you right now...(Sigh) I guess I'll have to try the direct approach.

Peperoncino: Yes, I am a Crypter, and I know we're on opposing sides...but I promise you, I'm not lying.

Peperoncino: If you don't get out of here right now,it will be the end of everything.

Mash: ...!

Fujimaru 1: But, what about the townspeople?

Peperoncino: It's okay. You don't have to worry about them.

Peperoncino: The ones who are fine are well and truly fine, and the ones who aren't, can't help them now, anyway.

Peperoncino: The one thing I can say for sure is that there's a very good reason why you all need to get out of here as fast as you possibly can.

Peperoncino: If that's still not enough to convince you, then I'll have to resort to clichés instead of logic.

Peperoncino: The truth is...right now,that's the only weapon I've got.

Peperoncino: Ready? ...Here goes.

Peperoncino: I hope you'll trust me on this.

Mash: Peperoncino...

Ganesha: Nn...What do we do?

Fujimaru 1: ...I believe him.

Fujimaru 2: I don't think he's lying.

I:Mash: Same! Peperoncino is a good person! I can't imagine he would ever try to deceive anyone!

Karna: A good person, huh. From my perspective, you seem to be...

Peperoncino: What? A show-off?

Karna: ...No. If nothing else, I agree that you aren't lying. I have no objections to Master's decision.

Goredolf: Wh-what!? You believe him!?

Holmes: Field decisions trump everything, Mr. Goredolf! Get used to it! All right then, hurry up and make your way out of–

Peperoncino: Oh. Well hello, Aśvatthāman. Long time no see.

Aśvatthāman: I guess so. Pisses me the hell off to see you here, ex-Master.

I:Mash: !?

Aśvatthāman: My contract with you's been completely overwritten. Any connection we had is long gone.

Peperoncino: Aww, well that's too bad. I don't suppose you'd let me go to celebrate us no longer being Master and Servant, would you?

Aśvatthāman: Hell no. I can't just let you guys walk out of here.

Aśvatthāman: Now that the big boss has decided he wants you gone,it's my job as one of his Lōkapāla to see it done.

Peperoncino: Hmm, well that puts me in a pretty pickle. Would you say all the others feel the same way?

Aśvatthāman: How should I know? But I'd guess they wouldn't do anything unless they were directly ordered to. Pisses me off.

B:???: Hehe. Yeah, pretty much.

B:???: Oh, but don't get me wrong, it's not because I don't care about my job. I'm just confident that you're more than capable of handling this alone, Aśvatthāman.

B:???: Confidence is hugely important, you know. It's just like hunting. It's a bad idea to work too hard when you're confident in your position.

B:???: If you go around hunting down mountain animals when you don't need to, the mountain'll end up dead.

Karna: Is your position the only reason you're standing in our way, Aśvatthāman?

Aśvatthāman: Nah, there's more to it than just that.

Aśvatthāman: I know if I stop you guys from getting away now,it'll get us one step closer to his perfect world.

Aśvatthāman: And you know what? I want to see his perfect world! I admit it!

Aśvatthāman: Which means I got no choice but to stop you.

Aśvatthāman: So I'm gonna beat all your asses down...

Aśvatthāman: ...and then, I'm gonna kick back and watch as you all get sucked into the dissolution!

Rama: The dissolution...? What do you mean?

Rama: Hmph...So the time for words is over, huh. Then I guess I'd better get ready to respond in kind.

Rama: If nothing else, I can understand him a lot better than the being way up there. Let's take him down and secure a way out of here, Master!

Karna: (So you still refuse to look my way, Arjuna...! )

Karna: (...No. Right now, I have another role to fulfill. )

Karna: Awaiting your orders, Master. Let's make our way through!


Aśvatthāman: Rrrgh! Stand still, dammit!

Mash: Pepe's using magecraft to help us! He's not doing any damage, but he's moving so fast that the enemy can't focus on us. Now's our chance!

Da Vinci: Hmm, can't say I've seen a spell to speed you up quite like that. It looks like it just lets you move around really quickly, plain and simple.

Peperoncino: Hehe, want to know how it works?

Peperoncino: Well, like its name suggests...I use the power of love to bend space around me!

Da Vinci: Oh for...! He's obviously lying, but we'll just have to leave it at that for the moment! The important thing is, the enemy's vulnerable now!

Da Vinci: There're no life-forms nearby, and you're a good distance away from the town now, so don't worry about holding back!

G:Karna: Vasavi Shakti!!!

Mash: It's a direct hit! That should do–

Mash: ...What!?

Aśvatthāman: Rrgh, rrrgh, rrrghhh...!

Aśvatthāman: What was that, Karna!? It's gonna take a hell of a lot more than that to kill me!

Holmes: The attack did hurt him, that much is certain. But he's recovering from the damage at an alarming rate!

G:Karna: ...I see you've changed since I last saw you, Aśvatthāman.

Aśvatthāman: Ha! What'd you expect? You're the one who died first...

Aśvatthāman: Losing to Arjuna, of all people...!

G:Karna: ...I did. I won't deny it.

Peperoncino: Hey now, slow your roll there, people. You don't have to finish him off just yet, okay?

Peperoncino: The important thing is, he's hurt enough for us to get past him now! So come on, hurry!

Fujimaru 1: He's right. Let's go!

Fujimaru 2: Everyone run for it as fast as you can!

Aśvatthāman: Dammit! Get back here...!

Fou: Fou, fou fou!

Ganesha: (Huff, huff) J-just so you guys know...!

Ganesha: Since I'm Ganesha and all, I can actually run faster than you'd think. Way faster than any ordinary human.

Ganesha: I don't even get tired that easily.

Ganesha: But I do FEEL tired, and for a NEET like me,that is the worst thing of all!

Ganesha: There's no one else in the whole world who hates running as much as we do!

Karna: Complaining about it won't make it any easier. Just be quiet and keep running.

Ganesha: I only said that because I was hoping you'd take the hint and carry me!

Karna: I can't. I would be crushed under your weight. Perhaps that is owed to the weight of Ganesha's divine power?

Ganesha: Hey, I'm not THAT heavy!

Rama: By the way, why are you running away with us? I thought you were our enemy.

Peperoncino: I have my reasons!

Peperoncino: Arjuna didn't see me as an enemy before now,so I was fine as long as I was just laying low...

Peperoncino: But since Nezha found me in the mountains,and especially now that I've helped all of you...

Peperoncino: ...I'm pretty sure he's decided I don't have a place in this world!

Peperoncino: Basically, now I'm qualified to be collateral damage!

Mash: Um, Pepe, I'm still not sure what that mea–

Peperoncino: Sorry, Mashie, but you really need to focus on moving those legs, not your mouth. We need to HURRY, honey!

Peperoncino: If we don't get away in time,it's curtains for all of us!

Fujimaru 1: So how far away do we need to run?

Peperoncino: You're kidding me! You really don't even know that!?

Peperoncino: All right, fine. I'll just have to explain as we run.

Peperoncino: Arjuna there is about to destroy and remake everything in this Lostbelt.

Peperoncino: Dissolution and rebirth...Destruction and reconstruction...Cataclysm and genesis...As the last god of this world, all of that is within his capability.

Mash: ...Huh?

Peperoncino: The reason he's taking so long to charge up is because he needs time to gather the ridiculous amount of energy he needs to pull all that off.

Peperoncino: And if any of us get caught in the destruction and rebirth of this world, we'll end up disappearing completely.

Peperoncino: One hundred percent, absolutely guaranteed. No recourse, no way out...nothing.

Holmes: That's quite difficult to believe.

Holmes: But, if that enormous mass of energy were to keep growing at an accelerated rate...I suppose it's not impossible...

Holmes: But then, if that's true, what happens to the world after it's been recreated? What about the life-forms?

Peperoncino: I'll fill you in on that later!

Peperoncino: Right now, I'm just answering Fujimaru's question of how far we need to run!

Peperoncino: So now that you know, I'm sure you can figure out what you have to do to avoid a massive Noble Phantasm capable of destroying the entire world, right?

Peperoncino: You're the only ones with an evasive measure that can get around that. I'm counting on it to save my skin, too...

Fujimaru 1: ...The Border's Zero Sail!

Peperoncino: Exactly! I'm glad you worked it out!

Da Vinci: Naturally, I figured that might be the case, so I've got the engine all warmed up and ready to go☆

Da Vinci: Let's figure out where to rendezvous, and we'll head there right now and come pick you guys up!

Peperoncino: I'll admit, it's still risky. I'm not sure what will happen if Arjuna becomes aware of the Border too...

Peperoncino: But right now, it's the only hope we have!

Goredolf: Hold it, hold it! Just a damn minute!

Goredolf: You want us to let a Crypter onto the Border? And let him experience a Zero Sail on top of that!?

Goredolf: Preposterous! Absolutely out of the question!

Goredolf: I know we've had a Crypter on board before, but that was strictly as a prisoner. Not to mention there were extenuating circumstan–

Holmes: Naturally, neither Da Vinci nor I have discounted the risks in this course of action.

Holmes: But right now, the most important thing by far is ensuring Fujimaru's safety.

Holmes: All other considerations are secondary at best. Besides...

Fujimaru 1: ...

Holmes: Just look at [♂ him /♀ her]. Once [♂ he /♀ she] makes up [♂ his /♀ her] mind to trust someone, there's nothing any of us can say to persuade[♂ him /♀ her] otherwise.

Holmes: Especially since [♂ he's /♀ she's] the one out there doing all the heavy lifting.

Peperoncino: Ugh, I thought we'd been over this already.

Peperoncino: At this point, I'm just a single, powerless mage. I don't even have a Servant anymore.

Peperoncino: I'd say that more than qualifies me as a prisoner, personally.

Goredolf: Hmm. A prisoner, huh...I do still regret how Kadoc Zemlupus ended up getting away...

Goredolf: If I look at this as another chance to gain some valuable information about the Crypters...

Goredolf: ...maybe the reward is worth the risk?

Goredolf: ...All right, I'll make a special exception just this once! But he's to be kept under tight security at all times!

Mash: Thank you, Director Goredolf!

Mash: ...I've got the Border's rendezvous point coordinates! Let's get there as fast as we can, Master!

Fujimaru 1: Just gotta hang in there a little longer!

Fujimaru 2: Come on guys, let's run for it!

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Peperoncino: (Sheesh. I've finally got a chance to survive. All that's left now is one simple question...)

Peperoncino: (...Will we make it in time...? )


Fujimaru 1: (Huff...Huff...Gasp! )

Fou: Fo fo, fo...u...

Mash: Are you okay, Master!?

Mash: We're almost there. Just hang in there a little long–On second thought, now that we've come this far, I doubt anything else will try to attack us.

Mash: I'll carry you the rest of the way. You too, Fou!

Fou: Fooou!

Ganesha: A-are we at the rendezvous point yet!?

Rama: Damn. Even with all this distance between us,the pressure from Arjuna is only growing stronger.

Rama: I've never felt the air turn so stifling before, not even when Ravana nicked my throat with his sword, or Kumbhakarna the giant's foot was hovering above my head.

Rama: ...This isn't normal. I'm not usually afraid of anything except losing Sita...

Rama: ...but for some time now I have been getting chills all the way down to my Spirit Origin!

Karna: ...

Holmes: Calculating expected arrival time based on our current speed and distance. Setting estimated limits based on current observation results.

Holmes: Putting those together, we get...

Goredolf: Well? What is it, man? Why aren't you saying anything? Oi!

Holmes: ...The only parameter we can adjust now is our speed. We'll just have to hurry as best we can.

Holmes: If you happened to install a secret acceleration system while you were working on the Border, Captain, this is the moment to reveal it.

Captain: I didn't have time for that. All I did was make sure all the existing systems were working.

Holmes: (We should just be able to rendezvous in time if we use all our resources and go at top speed. The real problem is...)

Holmes: ...I'll make as much headway on my end as I can. Please hurry, Da Vinci!

God Arjuna: ...

God Arjuna: ...It's done.

God Arjuna: Extracting...unified divine power from...all divinities, condensing process...complete. Using the control execution...

God Arjuna: ...

God Arjuna: Deployment prepartion...Begin.

Fujimaru 1: What was that...!?

Rama: Th-this is...!

A:Peperoncino: ...!

Ganesha: Ah, aah...This is it! We're done for! It's all over now!

Mash: I can tell too. It couldn't have been more clear. Whatever that's something we absolutely have to evade.

Mash: Please...please hurry up, Da Vinci!

H:Da Vinci: Sorry for the wait! Come on in guys, the hatch is wide-open!

Da Vinci: Everyone on board!? Okay, shutting the!

Fujimaru 1: So, we made it...?

Goredolf: Haha, hahaha! Well that wasn't so bad! You really had me going there, Holmes!

Goredolf: Couldn't resist having a bit of fun with us in lieu of Watson's absence, eh old–

Holmes: We're not out of the woods yet. The real problem is readying the Zero Sail!

Goredolf: What!?

Holmes: It doesn't just happen automatically at the push of a button. I did everything I could to prepare in advance...

Holmes: But even if we skip some of the checklist, go with the bare minimum, and turn a blind eye to everything else...

Holmes: won't work. Even if we perform the operations as fast as's still not enough.

Holmes: It's a difference of only five seconds, maybe even less, between the time we need and the time when Arjuna releases his Noble Phantasm...but those are five seconds we just don't have!

Mash: No...!

Da Vinci: Hold it. Hold on just a damn minute!

Da Vinci: Which one of you just went outside in their spirit form!?

Karna: That wave earlier...Now I see. I don't understand it, but I can sense it.

Karna: It's true. This world is going to be destroyed, then remade. If we are caught in that, we will disappear.

Fujimaru 1: Karna!?

Karna: We can't let you be erased, Master. So I'm going to do what I must to ensure you survive.

Da Vinci: Karna...You don't mean...!

Karna: Five seconds? Leave it to me.

Karna: By setting everything I have ablaze and becoming the very radiance of the sun...Even this Arjuna will not be able to consume it all at once.

Karna: For at least these five seconds,I will make sure he knows who I am.

Ganesha: B-but, if you do that, you'll...!

Karna: ...

Ganesha: C-come on, Karna, you can't do this! Be reasonable!

Fujimaru 1: I can't ask you to sacrifice yourself for my sake!

Fujimaru 2: ...!

Karna: There is no other way. Get ready to set sail.



Holmes: I'm working on it! It'll just be a bit longer!

Karna: That's it. Any Servant would do the same. This is what I want. You need not worry about me.

Fujimaru 1: Karna!

A:Peperoncino: Don't you dare let his sacrifice be in vain! Now sit down and buckle up!

Rama: Tch...You didn't even talk to me before you left! You've got a lot of nerve going off on your own like that, Karna...

Rama: You are truly the great Hero of Benefaction, a warrior among warriors! As they say nowadays, you live up to the hype and then some!

Rama: I'll take care of things from here. You give him hell!

Karna: ...Thank you.

Holmes: Entering final phase of emergency dive preparations! Initiating countdown–

Goredolf: H-how much time do we have until the attack hits us!?

Holmes: So little that I'd rather not spend it answering that question!

Ganesha: Wait...You can't...This isn't...

Karna: Arjuna...This may go without saying, but there are few things I want more than to run you through.

Karna: I could even take advantage of this briefest of opportunities to try and do so now.

Karna: But...

Karna: At this moment, I am a Servant sworn to protect my Master.

Karna: I am not here to meekly accept this outcome, nor resign myself to my fate. I am here to stand before you with pride, so that you may ignore me with disdain.

Karna: So today, I will not be taking up my spear. Instead...

God Arjuna: God...has cast his gaze downward.

God Arjuna: These defects are unnecessary...and therefore...evil.

God Arjuna: Begone, evil...You have no place in the new yuga...the new world.

God Arjuna: I will now...wield the sword...of the god who ends all things.

God Arjuna: I will cut off the world. From the rift in the world...made by the blade...clear purification will burst forth.

God Arjuna: Terminus and Genesis...will cycle anew...

God Arjuna: Sword of dissolution, let your blade fall. Mahāpralaya...

Karna: Behold...These are the shining armor and earring given to me by Surya, god of the sun.

Karna: But know this. Once I transform myself into the life's radiance, this gold will no longer be my armor.

Karna: It will merely be a sign that I am burning bright as the sun, here where you can see it.

Karna: Kavacha and Kundara!

Ganesha: Golden armor...

Karna: ...!!!

Rama: He activated his defensive Noble Phantasm...! But, even with its protection...!

Ganesha: Karnaaaaaa!

Karna: It's all right...I don't know how I know you, but I know you well.

Karna: And though I can't explain it...I have every confidence that we will one day meet again.

Karna: So don't be sad. And please...take care of Master for me.

Ganesha: ...!

Holmes: There! Shadow Border, untether from reality. Void Space Dive, Zero Sail: unfurl!

Section 6: The Relic Called Falsehood

Fujimaru 1: ...Are we still alive...?

Fujimaru 2: ...Did we make it...?

Holmes: Good grief. Talk about escaping by the skin of one's teeth.

Holmes: We may have paid a heavy price, but at least we managed to protect what we absolutely needed to.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Fujimaru 2: Karna...

Rama: Even wearing nigh-indestructible armor imbued with the sun god's power...there's only so much one can do when the very world crumbles away.

Rama: Truth be told, I'm impressed he lasted as long as he did.

Rama: That was a feat akin to holding back all the waters of the ocean, or catching a falling star with one's bare hands.

Rama: There are few heroes in all of history who could have withstood a cataclysm like that, even just for a few seconds.

Rama: For us, those few seconds were truly the difference between life and death.

Rama: Karna, Hero of Benefaction...I salute your strength and devotion. You have my eternal thanks.

Goredolf: ...First Nezha, now Karna. We've barely just gotten here, and we've already lost two of our Servants.

Holmes: As coldhearted as this may sound, we can't move on if we keep our focus on the past. Let's go over what we've gained as well.

Mash: ...Yes. I-I know. You're right. Go ahead, Holmes.

Holmes: That wave of light we observed just before we dived contained a truly unbelievable amount of magical energy.

Holmes: More than enough to convince me it was capable of destroying this entire Lostbelt...

Holmes: ...if I hadn't already seen it with my own eyes.

Holmes: No one hero should ever be able to wield power of that scale.

Holmes: But, given that he clearly can...there must be a reason for that.

Holmes: We've even heard a few hints towards his nature already. The final god. Every Indian Divinity rolled into one.

Holmes: So now, I think we'd best hear more about him from someone I believe is uniquely qualified to answer.

Holmes: Let me come right to the point: What is he?

Peperoncino: Okay, now seems like as good a time as any for a bit of a chat.

Peperoncino: Plus, now that you've shown me what the Reverse Side of the World looks like, it's only fair that I reciprocate, no?


The rift between worlds. The inside of nothingness. The gap between heaven and earth. The space outside the universe. Here, where a single moment spans an eternity, only he, and the few beings he acknowledges, are able to exist.

God Arjuna: ...Storage records...organization...complete. Commencing...reconstruction...

Limbo: Mmm...

Limbo: Mmm, mmmmmmmmm...Delightful!

Limbo: What a delightful way of molding the world as you see fit! I don't think I'll ever get tired of watching it!

Limbo: It's so unilateral! So transcendent! And above all, so violently correct!

Limbo: Ahh, what a blessing it is to witness it so closely!

Koyanskaya: ...If you say so. Personally, I think it's just plain boring.

Koyanskaya: He even had the perfect chance to get rid of the Chaldea clowns, and he let them get away. What was he thinking?

God Arjuna: Unnecessary...defects...deleted. Continuing...logic absorption...and conceptual repairs.

Limbo: Ohhh my my my. You really should be more careful, hmm? You're lucky he seems not to have heard you this time.

Limbo: If he decides we're defective and unnecessary too,we won't be able to escape the recreation process either.

Limbo: He's a god, after all. He gets to make those sort of judgments.

Limbo: Right now, the Chaldeans are little more than pests to be cleaned up along with the rest of the trash.

Limbo: If he did decide that Fujimaru and [♂ his /♀ her] little gang were truly unnecessary, he would send one of his Lōkapāla to handle them.

Limbo: It is not our place to say anything,let alone to do so impertinently.

Koyanskaya: ...

Limbo: No, all we need do is stand back...

Limbo: ...and merely spectate as he recreates this world into his own perfect little sandcastle!

Limbo: It may be wrong to draw up plans and create molds when it comes to making sandcastles, but as they say, if this is wrong, I don't want to be right!

Limbo: Why doesn't anyone else try their hand at it? The more we repeat the process, the closer we'll get to making the perfect plans and mold!

Limbo: At the rate we're going now, why, I expect it won't be long at all before we get there.

Limbo: Yes, I suppose the “sand” we're using may get worn and tattered the more we destroy and rebuild...

Limbo: ...but that is a small price to pay to bring such a grand project to its completion, don't you think? So of course...we will keep going! HeheheHEHEHE!

Koyanskaya: (Sigh)...

Koyanskaya: (The Foreign God's Disciples consist of three Alter Egos...)

Koyanskaya: (But this monk is one to be especially wary of. Part of it is that he's very much rotten to the core...)

Koyanskaya: (...but it also couldn't be more obvious that in the end, he's going to cast off the few inhibitions he has, wreck everything in his path, and move on to do it all over again somewhere else. )

Koyanskaya: (...What's with that look? Are you saying I only dislike him because he reminds me of myself? )

Koyanskaya: (I'm a patient woman, but even I can only take being lumped in with something like that for so long...)

Koyanskaya: (Why don't you open your mouth and actually say something for once? )

Koyanskaya: (Or is your job really just observing, and nothing else? )

Koyanskaya: (...Well, I guess you didn't need to say anything there. Your actions couldn't have said “I can already see where this is going” louder than if you brought a megaphone. )

Koyanskaya: (All right, I'll just make do with modest gains in this Lostbelt and focus on finding out what that monk is up to. )

Koyanskaya: (After all, I certainly don't want him getting in the way of my own future plans...)

God Arjuna: Final value allotments...confirmed. Entering...Executing...

God Arjuna: Thus, the world is reborn...its cycle begins anew...

	XXXXXth Yuga Cycle – Inception 


Peperoncino: So, I'm sure you've all at least figured out this much, but that Arjuna is the core of this Indian Lostbelt.

Peperoncino: He's the reason this world became part of the Pruning Theoretical Phenomenon.

Peperoncino: Let's see...To tie it to Holmesie's earlier question...

Holmes: (...Holmesie? )

Peperoncino: ...this world was pruned away because in it,he gained the power you've just witnessed.

Fujimaru 1: What happened, exactly?

Peperoncino: Just so you know, this is almost all speculation on my part, okay? There's no one around who can prove what really happened.

Peperoncino: Anyway, I don't know exactly when he got all that power, or when this world became estranged from Proper Human History.

Peperoncino: All I know is that it was a long time ago. But I can make an educated guess. It was probably during the Mahabharata.

Peperoncino: Something happened right around when the war it depicts came to an end. Something that led to Arjuna acquiring every Divinity in India.

Mash: Right, you mentioned that earlier. Then, it's really true?

Holmes: It would certainly make a kind of paradoxical sense, given what we've seen thus far. A feat as extraordinary as remaking the entire world simply wouldn't be possible without an equally extraordinary background.

Holmes: ...But that still doesn't explain how it happened.

Peperoncino: This is also just speculation, but I think he probably acquired the Divinities in phases.

Peperoncino: In the most plausible explanation I can think of,he probably started by acquiring Vishnu's power...

Peperoncino: ...since his closest friend, Krishna,was one of Vishnu's avatars.

Peperoncino: What's more, Krishna was said to have one of the strongest connections to Vishnu of all his avatars.

Peperoncino: Not that I'm saying you're weak, of course, Ramie.

Rama: I am perfectly able to understand the point you are making. Never mind the placations. Just keep going.

Peperoncino: You got it, hon. So, if Arjuna somehow got Vishnu's Divinity from Krishna, peacefully or otherwise...

Peperoncino: stands to reason that it could have laid the groundwork to do the same with the other Divinities.

Peperoncino: Vishnu is one of the most powerful gods in all of Indian mythology, after all.

Peperoncino: I expect he went around hungrily unifying all the other Indian gods in this Lostbelt one by one after that.

Peperoncino: Indra...Even Shiva and Brahma were no exception.

Peperoncino: So once he'd absorbed all their Divinities,he became what he is now...

Peperoncino: Arjuna with divine power over death and creation, ruler of this Lostbelt and capable of destroying and rebuilding everything alike.

Peperoncino: No...You can't even call him Arjuna anymore. He may have started as Arjuna, but he's something else altogether now.

Peperoncino: That's why he no longer has a shred of the heroic Arjuna's personality.

Peperoncino: You saw that for yourselves, didn't you?

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, we did...

Fujimaru 2: Yeah. He was nothing like the Arjuna we know.

Mash: Yes. He seemed...disconnected? Mechanical? I'm not sure how best to describe it, did seem very clear that we won't be able to reason with him...

Holmes: Technically, this would not be the first such entity we've met. If you'll think back to Scandinavia, Sitonai was an amalgamation of three Divine Spirits.

Holmes: But Arjuna would seem to be on another scale altogether. So much so it's hard to believe they're in the same category.

Holmes: At this point, it is all too plausible to accept that he is neither human nor Servant, but an entirely new divine, conceptual being.

Holmes: Truth be told, I'm surprised he's even able to maintain his form.

Goredolf: All right, so we know what his deal is! Now, what about you!?

Goredolf: What's your game here, Crypter!?

Peperoncino: Me? Why, isn't it obvious?

Goredolf: The only thing that's obvious about you is that your face practically screams “Don't trust me”!

Peperoncino: Well, I never! I'll have you know I was just trying to keep my embarrassment from showing!

Peperoncino: But, all right. If you need me to explain, I can do that.

Peperoncino: After becoming a Crypter,I summoned Aśvatthāman to be my Servant.

Peperoncino: After I was assigned this Indian Lostbelt, the first thing I did was make contact with its king, Arjuna.

Peperoncino: Once I learned he was basically a god, I spent my first few months here trying to control him as much as I could.

Peperoncino: But after that Foreign God Disciple showed up,Arjuna suddenly started behaving strangely.

Peperoncino: I guess the Disciple must have managed to sway him over to his side.

Fujimaru 1: Who is this Foreign God Disciple?

Fujimaru 2: Can you tell us more about what this Disciple is like?

Peperoncino: He's a young man who always wears some sort of Japanese outfit. He calls himself a monk, but he's clearly a failed onmyouji.

Fujimaru 1: (A monk...? )

Fujimaru 2: (An onmyouji...? )

Peperoncino: He's very handsome, but he's also thoroughly twisted and just rotten to the core. Definitely not my type.

Peperoncino: If I'd approached him, the odds were better than even that one of us would've ended up dead.

Peperoncino: And we couldn't have that, right? Seeing how we're both technically on the Foreign God's side and all.

Peperoncino: So I always made sure to keep my distance from him. I never even got a chance to find out his True Name.

Mash: At least we know he isn't Koyanskaya, and it sounds like he's not Father Kotomine–Rasputin, either.

Peperoncino: Oh? Teehee, I am fond of Koyanskaya. She may be evil, but she's a pure sort of evil.

Peperoncino: You know how she can cross between Lostbelts as she pleases, right? So I see her every now and then...

Peperoncino: ...but I haven't gotten a read on her. It's like, she doesn't respect the Foreign God despite being an Alter Ego?

Peperoncino: But anyway, Koyanskaya doesn't have anything to do with Arjuna.

Peperoncino: Basically, thanks to the other Alter Ego, the male Disciple, Arjuna started taking a much heavier hand to his world than he ever had before.

Peperoncino: After that, it sounds like they needed more pawns for running errands and such...

Peperoncino: he went and took my contract with Aśvatthāman, all because he just happened to be close by! Ahahaha!

Peperoncino: And just like that, Aśvatthāman was his, and there was nothing I could do! A lot of good being a Crypter did me, right? At that point, all I could do was laugh at how absurd it all was!

Goredolf: Wh-what!? He just took your contract from you!?

Peperoncino: Thinking back on it now, I shouldn't be surprised,considering just how powerful a god he is.

Peperoncino: I just didn't really get how powerful until he was using that power on me.

Peperoncino: Then, to top all that off, he went and summoned a few more Servants all on his own!

Peperoncino: I don't know if he figured out how by studying Aśvatthāman, or if the Disciple told him, but I guess it doesn't matter.

Peperoncino: The point is, once he had more Servants on his side,I knew I had zero chance of taking Aśvatthāman back.

Mash: I got the impression that Aśvatthāman used to be your Servant based on our earlier conversation.

Mash: What I really want to know is,what happened after that?

Peperoncino: After that? I ran away as fast as my legs could carry me, of course. I didn't want to die for nothing, after all. That's really all it comes down to with me.

Holmes: But don't you Crypters have a duty to grow your Lostbelts? Isn't that how you're supposed to determine which one is truly worthy to rule?

Peperoncino: Well sure, but with this India...or rather,with Arjuna there, that's just not going to happen.

Peperoncino: Honestly, I knew it was pointless almost as soon as I got here.

Peperoncino: Easy to see this world is a dead end,and nothing I can do about that.

Peperoncino: So I gave up on my responsibilities to grow this world's Tree of Emptiness. I mean, who cares who the king of the world is if you're not alive to see it?

Peperoncino: Kirschtaria's probably already figured out that my Lostbelt's a lost cause.

Peperoncino: In Daybit's case...I'm not sure. I wish he would show at least a little interest in it, but oh well.

Peperoncino: Oh, that reminds me. I heard you had run-ins with Kadoc, Ophelia, and Akuta.

Peperoncino: Well, if you're not going make this personal, I won't either.

Peperoncino: Besides, I can't go around avenging my comrades or talking about Crypters' pride with things as they are right now, can I?

Mash: ...

Goredolf: Hmph. So you're refusing to comment on the Crypters, is that it?

Goredolf: And as long as we don't bring up the Crypters ourselves,you won't oppose us as one...Is that what you're saying?

Peperoncino: Take it however you like. But just knowing that Fujimaru spared Kadoc, and buried Ophelia...

Peperoncino: Well, that's more than enough reason for me to want to avoid fighting [♂ him /♀ her] if I can.

Holmes: I notice you didn't mention Akuta Hinako there. What about her?

Peperoncino: Oh, Akuta's a special case. I mean, she wasn't even human, right?

Peperoncino: She was never on anyone's side but her own to begin with, so I don't see any reason to avenge her.

Meunière: You knew Akuta Hinako was a True Ancestor!?

Peperoncino: Akuta did a good job keeping her cards close to her chest, but I've always had a good nose for that sort of thing.

Peperoncino: I knew the instant I arrived at Chaldea that she wasn't actually human.

Fujimaru 1: ...What did you mean when you said this world is a dead end?

Peperoncino: Oh yes, that's the last thing I need to tell you about.

Peperoncino: Arjuna uses his power to destroy and recreate the world over and over, cycling it through periods called yugas.

Peperoncino: I'll spare you the details for now, but while they're similar in some ways to India's original conception of yugas...they ultimately diverge pretty wildly.

Peperoncino: We have a couple of problems. First, he's gradually going through the yugas faster and faster. Then there's one of the things he does as he completes each cycle.

Holmes: Something he does when he remakes heaven and earth in between yuga cycles, hmm.

Holmes: We have already been informed about something along those lines. Namely, the “judgment” Asha told us about.

Holmes: I can infer what that judgment entails thanks to her telling us it involves everyone dying and coming back to life...

Holmes: ...but of course, now is not the time for speculation.

Peperoncino: Aww, why not? I'd love to get to see you speculating in person, Holmes.

Holmes: Hard as it may be to believe coming from me...

Holmes: ...I have no intention of interrupting someone else's explanation of a thorny riddle with my own half-baked theories.

Peperoncino: Hehe. Well, if you already know that much, it would probably be faster to see it for yourselves then anyway.

Da Vinci: Hi, hi! It's me, Da Vinci! The beautiful genius who's been forced to keep her mouth shut and listen despite being just itching to jump into all this fascinating discussion!

Da Vinci: Our Reality Space observation results have finally stabilized, so we can emerge from our Zero Sail now.

Da Vinci: The longer we stay submerged, the more chance we have of something going wrong, so while I hate to cut Peperoncino's explanation off...

Da Vinci: ...I really think we should head back to Reality Space now, especially for our own. What do you say, Gordy?

Goredolf: Hmm...All right, then go ahead.

Goredolf: But I want our security to remain airtight! And make damn sure we resurface inside the Lostbelt, got it!?

Da Vinci: Got it!

Mash: Will it be safe for us to go back outside after we emerge?

Peperoncino: Oh sure. The rules about the yuga cycle are one-hundred-percent absolute, so I can promise you Arjuna won't try anything now that we've just started a new one.

Peperoncino: Though when it comes to other dangers,I can't make any guarantees.

Peperoncino: I mean, I just don't know, you know?

Rama: We can't let the mere possibility of danger hold us back. We may not be able to do anything about that cataclysm yet...

Rama: ...but we'll just have to assume we'll be able to handle any other threats we run into.

Rama: Nezha and Karna may be gone now, but you still have Mash, myself...and Ganesha the Divine Spirit.

Ganesha: ...Uh, yeah, I guess so.

Fujimaru 1: ...Are you all right?

Ganesha: Sorry for being so down in the dumps. I'm okay now, I promise. I know I still have my Ganesha duties to fulfill...

Ganesha: And besides, did you hear what Karna said? He asked me to take care of you for him.

Ganesha: Can you believe that? A super great hero like Karna asking a loser like me for help? How does THAT work!?

Ganesha: Still, I don't think he'd have said that if he hadn't needed my help.

Ganesha: So...that must mean he thought I was up to it. That he trusted me, as a fellow Servant.

Ganesha: So I figure, I may be a loser,but I can still do my losery best.

Ganesha: If Karna's gonna put his trust in me, I might as well see if he saw something I didn't! Just don't expect me to be much help!

Fujimaru 1: Okay, I won't. Glad to have you with us!

Peperoncino: I'll come along and help too, of course. Besides, it's easier to explain things when you're seeing them in person.

Peperoncino: Is that all right with you, Fujimaru and Mash?

Mash: Absolutely! Thank you so much, Pepe!

Goredolf: Hold it! What do you think you're doing, Peperoncino!? Have you forgotten you're our prisoner!?

Peperoncino: Huh?

Peperoncino: But the Border won't be leaving this Lostbelt until Fujimaru finishes what [♂ he /♀ she] came here to do, right?

Peperoncino: So how could I possibly get away on my own?

Peperoncino: Besides, helping all of you is the surest way to help me survive too.

Peperoncino: Not to mention that Mashie just looks sooo adorable after all this time...

Peperoncino: ...that I can't help but want to support her anyway, you know?

Mash: I, uh, I see. Thank you?

Peperoncino: Of course, if you insist on keeping me in here, well, I can't blame you for that, but are you sure it's a good idea?

Goredolf: A good idea? Don't be preposterous, of course I'm sure it's...No, wait, hang on. Hmm...What if...

Peperoncino: (...Oh my, he's gone so pale. )

Peperoncino: (Scared of keeping an unknown element like me here in the heart of their operations. God, he's so easy to read...)

Goredolf: (...I could have Holmes and Captain restrain him,but what if he's planted a bomb inside his body...? )

Goredolf: (...There's something frightening about him that reminds me of a mercenary. )

Goredolf: (He may have said he only wants to survive, but he's obviously not the least bit frightened about dying. )

Goredolf: (I could easily see him blowing himself up, and taking us all out with him...So then, the safest option would be...)

Goredolf: ...All right, I suppose it would be the humane thing to do. Very well then, just this once, I'll grant you special permission to accompany Fujimaru.

Goredolf: But be warned, this permission is contingent on you obeying every order we give you, without question. Refuse, and I won't hesitate to take whatever measures I deem necessary. Is that clear!?

Peperoncino: Okay, that's fair. If I die, I die. Works for me!

Da Vinci: Okay then, let's get going!

Da Vinci: Shadow Border, preparing to emerge! Everyone hold on tight!

Da Vinci: As soon as we're safely back to Reality Space,let's go see what this newly remade world is like!

Section 7: Return of Paradise/The Shape of Evil to be Cut Off

Narration: ...I experienced the Kali Yuga ending several times after Aśvatthāman was taken from me.

Narration: I felt the light of creation wrapping me in a tight embrace, just as powerless to do anything as the people absorbed in their worthless prayers.

Narration: As long as the god of this world doesn't consider you defective, at least there's no pain. You don't feel it.

Narration: The light just keeps getting brighter, blinding you and even numbing you to the passage of time.

Narration: The next thing you know, you're right back where you started, only everything around you's been changed...

Narration: I don't know what the locals make of that experience...

Narration: ...but it was awful enough to almost make me vomit.

Narration: I'd rather stick my head inside a festering dead body, or kiss a pile of excrement from a prison cell without plumbing.

Narration: Those options might be revolting, but least I wouldn't have to be so frightened.

Narration: So while I hate to admit it, when that light finally subsided, and I found myself standing there...

Narration: ...I would be relieved that I had avoided being taken away.

Narration: But it was never long after that my relief turned to worry, to the point that I could barely think straight. Maybe I just got lucky this time. What about the next time? Or the time after that?

Narration: So in retrospect, it was inevitable that I would take action like this sooner or later.

Narration: This time, I managed to avoid the light by escaping to the Reverse Side of the World, so I thought I might feel differently now...but surprisingly, nothing changed.

Narration: Upon laying eyes on the new world of this cycle, I felt the same things as always: loathing, and discomfort.

Narration: To use more contemporary slang...I just can't even with this world.

Narration: I guess its god bothers me even more than I expected.

Narration:     ...Ahh. In many ways, it's a perfect world...

Narration:     And yet...    it's also just...unbearable...

Fujimaru 1: Where are we now...?

Fou: Fouuu!

Mash: The air smells sweet, there's water and flowers everywhere you look, and there's a calm and gentle breeze...What is this place?

Da Vinci: Wanna know what the most surprising part is? You're standing in almost the same spot that we Zero Sailed from.

Da Vinci: Our location didn't change. The entire rest of this world did.

Holmes: Thankfully, there are no hostiles in the immediate area. Let's begin by paying another visit to the town of Bichu.

Peperoncino: ...

Mash: Um, is something wrong, Pepe? You look kind of angry...

Peperoncino: What's that? You're jealous of how soft and smooth my skin is? Why, it's all in the upkeep, hon!

Peperoncino: Unlike Ms. Never-Changing Akuta, I actually have to work to make sure I look this good.

Peperoncino: Go on, feel how supple my cheeks are for yourself. They're my pride and joy, you know♡

Mash: Th-that's okay...

Peperoncino: Oh silly, there's no need to be shy.

Peperoncino: But anywho, going to visit that town next sounds just dandy. The topography and plant life changes that come with a new yuga are all just surface-level details.

Peperoncino: The thing that changed the most after what Arjuna did will have been the people.

Fujimaru 1: Okay, let's go check out the town.

Rama: Understood. But make sure to keep the Border's location in mind at all times from now on, Fujimaru.

Rama: I don't want us to ever have to run for our lives like that again if we can help it.

Fujimaru 1: What in the...!?

Fou: Fou, fooou! Fou!

Ganesha: Wow, there's not a single brick out of place now...In fact, this is exactly what the town looked like when I first came to this world!

Mash: I can't believe it...It's like the kali never attacked it at all. What in the world is going on?

Mash: Then there's the people going about their lives here...They all look happy now, they're practically beaming.

Rama: Great. Look who it is.

Prakash: Goodness, you're all okay! This is wonderful news! Just wonderful!

Prakash: This truly must be the god's will. All is right with the world once again...

Prakash: ...Oh, no, that isn't quite right, is it? First, I owe you all an apology.

Prakash: No matter how dire the circumstances were at the time, I should never have spoken to you like that.

Prakash: I know it won't be enough to truly make amends, but I'll be including all of you in my prayers from now on.

Prakash: I only ask that you please not hold what I said against the people of this lovely town.

Ganesha: (Whaaa? Yesterday he wanted to run us out of town,and now he's all happy to see us!? )

Fou: Fou, fou.

Fujimaru 1: Even Fou's nuzzling up to him...?

Fujimaru 2: ...(He really is sorry. He's not just saying it...)

Rama: ...Didn't you say we were godless heretics you wanted nothing to do with?

Prakash: Don't be ridiculous! The fact that you're here now is proof you overcame the last yuga's difficulties with us.

Prakash: That makes you all one of us now. You're our friends. Our family!

Prakash: And not only that, today is the blessed first day of Kṛta Yuga, the yuga of peace.

Prakash: Are you hungry? If you like, you're welcome to come and eat with me at my mansion.

Prakash: Or would you prefer some fine ornaments for the young ladies? We also have plenty of beautiful flowers.

Fujimaru 1: That's very kind of you, but we're okay.

Mash: Y-yes, I'm afraid we have some pressing business we need to take care of. I appreciate the offer, but we really should be on our way.

Fujimaru 2: We kind of wanted to explore the town, so...

Prakash: ...I see. Well that's a pity. I was hoping to introduce you to the rest of the townspeople.

Prakash: Oh, by the way, that mansion over there is my house. I'm afraid it ended up that big on account of my being mayor...

Prakash: It's very embarrassing, living somewhere as ostentatious as that...but, it is not without meaning.

Prakash: Please feel free to come visit whenever you have the time. You'll always be welcome in my home.

Prakash: Good day then...

Ganesha: What the heck? I've never seen someone go from jerkwad to sweetheart in no time flat like that. He seemed elated.

Peperoncino: It's probably because Kṛta Yuga's the yuga of happiness. Tends to make most of the locals friendly and kindhearted.

Peperoncino: Though of course, I'm sure there are exceptions.

Ajai: ...Tch. You guys again.

Mash: Oh! Master, it's Ajai! He doesn't seem any different now than he did before.

Mash: I'm not judging either way, I'm just surprised how simply hearing him click his tongue again has made me feel so relieved.

Mash: And then there's–

Asha: Ah, it's you guys! This is such a surprise!

Asha: So you made it to the new yuga, huh? That's great!

Mash: ...Yes. It wasn't easy, but we did make it. I'm glad to see you're okay too, Asha.

Asha: I sure am! I prayed extra hard,so I didn't get hurt at all!

Mash: I see. That's wonderful.

Mash: Oh, but speaking of hurt, is your dog–I mean, Vihan okay?

Mash: He hurt his leg before the Kali Yuga, right? I don't see him with you...

Asha: Huh?

Mash: ...?

Asha: Who's Vihan?


Fujimaru 1: ...

Mash: ...

Fou: Fou...

Rama: All right, it should be safe to discuss this now that we've come this far. What is the meaning of this?

Peperoncino: This world runs on the yuga cycle. But needless to say, these aren't proper yugas.

Peperoncino: A real Kṛta Yuga, or Satya Yuga depending on who you ask, is supposed to last for forty-eight hundred years.

Peperoncino: Then the Tretā Yuga is supposed to last for thirty-six hundred years, the Dvāpara Yuga for twenty-four hundred...

Peperoncino: ...and the Kali Yuga for twelve hundred.

Peperoncino: And on top of that, these are in god years, where each one is equivalent to three-hundred and sixty human years.

Peperoncino: Suffice to say, we're talking about a reeeally long cycle.

Holmes: Whereas in this world, it would seem only the ratios have been preserved, given that each yuga is apparently four, three, two, and one day long, respectively.

Peperoncino: That's right. But the people I've talked to here said things weren't always like this.

Peperoncino: It used to be that the yuga cycle lasted for hundreds of years, or maybe even longer.

Holmes: So that is what this world was like immediately after it was pruned away and became a Lostbelt?

Peperoncino: Right. I'm sure the period where kali would show up had to have been proportionally longer back then...

Peperoncino: ...but I'd also bet they showed up much less frequently than they do now.

Peperoncino: Otherwise, the people here would have gone extinct long ago.

Peperoncino: But over time, the cycle got shorter and shorter,and now it only lasts ten days.

Peperoncino: I have to think that drastically shortened cycle is why there are so many more kali now.

Peperoncino: They used to only be let out a bit at a time, but now the floodgates have been opened, so to speak.

Mash: Why did Arjuna shorten the yuga cycle so much?

Peperoncino: Part of it is thanks to that Disciple pouring poison in his ear, like I said earlier...

Peperoncino: ...and part of it is that the Tree of Emptiness has given him power he didn't have before that lets him do so.

Peperoncino: Yes, I know that only addresses the how, not the why. I'm getting to that.

Peperoncino: I think the reason he sped things up so to reach whatever end he has in mind for all this that much faster.

Peperoncino: In short, it looks like he's in a rush to create his perfect world.

Fujimaru 1: What do you mean by that...?

Peperoncino: Okay, now I can finally answer the question that's been plaguing all of you:

Peperoncino: What exactly happened earlier?

Peperoncino: The that it's something unique Arjuna does. Something that isn't meant to happen in a normal yuga.

Peperoncino: Whenever one of these shortened yuga cycles comes to an end, he purges everything he considers defective and unnecessary from this world.

Peperoncino: He believes that by repeating that process over and over...

Peperoncino: ...he'll eventually arrive at a perfect world, devoid of anything it shouldn't have...or, as he thinks of it, evil.

Mash: ...!

Da Vinci: Damn. That's one hell of a destination.

Holmes: I see. So this purging must include living things,not just inanimate objects.

Peperoncino: Right. And as far as I can tell, when a living thing is's like it never even existed.

Rama: So that's what happened to the poor dog that couldn't run after breaking its leg.

Mash: I can't believe it...Asha loved that dog more than anything, and now, she doesn't even remember him...

Ganesha: Yeah...That's harsh.

Peperoncino: It happens to anyone who's unlucky enough to be killed by a kali, too. That's a sort of disqualifying offense.

Peperoncino: Same goes for people who end up as social pariahs, or if Arjuna himself ends up judging you to be flawed.

Peperoncino: When the next yuga rolls around,they just cease to exist.

Peperoncino: It might sound contradictory, but I think Arjuna adjusts for things like that whenever he remakes the world.

Holmes: I see. That would explain how continuity and discontinuity can exist simultaneously in a new yuga.

Holmes: For example, Asha may have completely forgotten her beloved dog, but she still remembered all of you.

Holmes: But how does such a thing even work?

Peperoncino: I'm not entirely sure myself, but I can tell you what that blabbermouth Disciple of the Foreign God said.

Peperoncino: He said Arjuna collects every bit of data that makes up the world whenever he blows it away, kind of like a snapshot.

Peperoncino: Then, when it's time to begin a new Kṛta Yuga, he uses that data–let's call it Snapshot A–to reassemble the world.

Peperoncino: As he puts everything back together, he removes all the elements he deemed defective and unnecessary...

Peperoncino: ...and in the end, he has a new world based on Snapshot A, but reflecting the changes he's made.

Ganesha: Ohh, I get it. He's a cheater.

Ganesha: He's basically hacking his save data, changing the parameters to suit his preferences before reloading it.

Ganesha: Cheaters! The scum of gamers everywhere. Don't they know hacking saves takes all the fun out of it!?

Peperoncino: He's not doing this to have fun. All he cares about is making what he considers to be a perfect world.

Peperoncino: A world consisting only of what is truly necessary,with nothing wasted or evil to be found.

Ganesha: Aha...Now I know what genre he's playing, too. He's into 4X games.

Fujimaru 1: What're those?

Ganesha: A 4X game is a simulation where the player just sets the initial parameters and then the world sort of plays out from there.

Ganesha: And if you're a cheater, if something happens in your sim that you don't like–say, if an enemy nation takes you by surprise and invades you...

Ganesha: save your game, hack your data, and reload...and it's like the enemy nation that was bothering you never existed.

Ganesha: That's the kind of thing we're talking about here, right? Arjuna's just doing that over and over until he wins, right?

Ganesha: I swear, what's the point of even playing if you're just gonna cheat to win! Death to cheaters, that's what I say!

Fujimaru 1: Now I get what's going on...I think...

Fujimaru 2: I guess some people just care about the destination, not the journey...

Da Vinci: Video game analogies aside...

Da Vinci: If that's true, it sounds like Arjuna isn't remaking the world from scratch every time he resets the cycle then.

Da Vinci: Instead, he's basically treating the world like a model, adding new parts and removing old ones.

Holmes: Then it would stand to reason that, strictly speaking, the people here may not be dying and being brought back to life.

Da Vinci: Yeah. It seems more likely that everything down to their souls is being saved as data...

Da Vinci: ...and that their memories are being modified when they're put back into the new world.

Da Vinci: And if that's the case, we're talking about a much smaller-scale feat than creating the entire universe from nothing.

Da Vinci: It's still a big frigging deal, don't get me wrong.

Da Vinci: But if Arjuna's got every Indian Divinity AND support from the Tree of Emptiness, it's theoretically possible.

Holmes: Hmm...I'm beginning to see the larger picture.

Holmes: There is something about this Lostbelt that is almost reminiscent of a Singularity.

Holmes: The Russian, Scandinavian, and Chinese Lostbelts we've seen so far were all the result of a world where some definitive event happened in their respective pasts to dramatically change the course of history.

Holmes: But this Indian Lostbelt is still in the middle of its definitive event.

Holmes: Here, its king is continually trying to evolve this world by regularly recreating it with parameters that would be unthinkable in Proper Human History.

Holmes: While he has yet to reach his goal of a perfected world, I suspect the reason this world was pruned...

Holmes: that the very act of trying to change it in such a manner was considered a mistake.

Goredolf: Ahem.

Holmes: Hm? What is it, Director Goredolf? If you have any questions, please, go right ahead.

Goredolf: Do you! Ever! Shut up!?

Goredolf: I don't mind you explaining things, but I insist you do so concisely, in a report I can read at my leisure!

Goredolf: You just gave me flashbacks to one of my teachers in my Clock Tower days who would lecture me for what felt like days on end!

Goredolf: Who cares if the people here are technically dying or not when this world is remade?

Goredolf: The part that actually matters is that WE will die if we get caught in that!

Holmes: I suppose you do have a point.

Goredolf: Of course I do. Now then, I say we pivot this discussion to more practical matters. Namely, how do we stay safe, and what is our next course of action?

Goredolf: You there, Peperoncino! It's only by my good graces that you're running around outside instead of being confined in the Border under lock and key.

Goredolf: Now repay the favor by telling us something we can use, dammit!

Peperoncino: Something you can use, hmm. Well, I guess I can think of one thing...

Peperoncino: Pulling off a feat that massive takes a lot out of Arjuna, so he isn't able to move around much.

Peperoncino: And I don't just mean that long stretch of time at the end of a Kali Yuga when he charges up that Noble Phantasm.

Peperoncino: I'm pretty sure that, unlike most Servants, he doesn't do much of anything the rest of the time either.

Peperoncino: I guess he just doesn't have access to the energy he would need to do more than ride that Vimana of his.

Peperoncino: I think that's how he spends most of his time...just riding around the Tree of Emptiness on his Vimana.

Peperoncino: Of course, he might look like he's spacing out up there, but I'm sure he's actually keeping a close eye out for the next bit of evil to purge.

Rama: It's probably got something to do with containing so many powerful Divinities within himself. It would also explain why he seems so devoid of personality.

Mash: But then...isn't that exactly why he would need other Servants to handle other things for him?

Fujimaru 1: Aśvatthāmān did say something about that, didn't he?

Ganesha: Yeah, he did. I think he called himself a...Lōkapāla?

Peperoncino: Lōkapāla...In original Indian mythology, Lōkapāla were said to protect the world...They were the guardians of all directions.

Peperoncino: Though I don't know what that could mean.

Rama: We know who their Nezha is now,but who were those other two Servants?

Peperoncino: I'm afraid I don't know. I was already on the outs with Arjuna when he got around to summoning them.

Peperoncino: By that time, he just considered me an outsider he didn't need to worry about, though since I'm Aśvatthāmān's former Master, he did tell his Servants to eliminate me if they happened to see me.

Peperoncino: Suffice to say I have no idea what their True Names are, though I get the feeling they're an Archer and a Caster.

Da Vinci: I think I could make an educated guess, but there's no point in speculation at this point. We need solid info.

Holmes: Well, this seems like a good time to tell you that those Servants are not the only enemies we face here.

Holmes: There are also the sacred beasts...the Mystical creatures the people here referred to as the “agents of god. ”

Peperoncino: Oh, those? They're primitive guardian beasts Arjuna made to counteract the kali. They manifest naturally.

Peperoncino: And since there are almost no kali during the peaceful Kṛta Yuga...

Peperoncino: ...the beasts are supposed to just wander around like normal animals.

Fujimaru 1: Holmes, what did you mean by “this seems like a good time”?

Holmes: I suspect the answer to that, and your next immediate course of action, will be clear to you soon enough.

Fujimaru 2: “Supposed to”?

Peperoncino: Oh my, you're a better listener than I took you for. Attentiveness is a wonderful quality, you know♡

Mash: Sacred beasts!

Peperoncino: I guess that means Arjuna really doesn't want us here, then.

Peperoncino: So of course, they'll attack us on sight now,just like the kali.

Rama: You said these beasts wander around just like ordinary animals, yes?

Rama: Then we clearly can't let our guard down just because it's Kṛta Yuga now.

Rama: Still, I don't know if it's the sunshine or what, but my body feels lighter now. This shouldn't take long!

Ganesha: Y-yeah! I'll show you guys how well I can hold my own in a fight! O-or at least, I hope I'll be able to...


Peperoncino: Okay, now that we've gone over how things generally work in this Lostbelt...

Peperoncino: ...what do you think of it?

Fujimaru 1: I don't think it's right.

Fujimaru 2: I don't like it.

Mash: Me neither. Asha and Vihan looked to me like they were the best of friends.

Mash: They were

Mash: And I'm positive that had nothing to do with how well Vihan could or couldn't run.

Mash: It didn't matter how well he could hunt or stand guard, either.

Mash: As far as Asha was concerned, she just loved him and wanted him to stay by her side...

Fou: Fou...

Mash: So if the god of this world just erased their relationship for his own reasons...

Mash: ...what happens to all the love she had for him,all the happiness she felt when they were together?

Mash: Where does it go?

Fujimaru 1: ...You said it.

Fou: Fou fou!

Peperoncino: (Amazing...The same girl who used to resemble nothing so much as a living doll, expounding on love...)

Peperoncino: (Oh, this is just precious...(Sniff) I think I'm going to cry. )

Peperoncino: (Although...I wonder what Beryl would say if he saw this new Mash...? )

Holmes: Allow me to offer some criticism of this world from a different perspective.

Holmes: I'm sure it's been some time since a calendar meant anything in this world, but for the purposes of our discussion, let's say the year here is 2021.

Holmes: As I'm sure you're aware from visiting the nearby town, civilization here has not advanced anything like as far as in Proper Human History.

Holmes: That is not to say I only value postindustrial age advances, or that I have no appreciation for a life lived in harmony with nature. I assure you, neither is true.

Holmes: I am merely saying that civilization as a whole has clearly not progressed here when compared to Proper Human History.

Holmes: That aspect alone is enough for me to declare this world a far cry from anything approaching the ideal.

Holmes: The march of civilization has stalled here just like in the Chinese Lostbelt, albeit for very different reasons.

Ganesha: And it hardly needs saying, but I don't like the way this god does things either. Cheaters get permabanned, that's what I say.

Ganesha: On another note...Is everything okay Rama? Something on your mind?

Rama: I just realized something.

Rama: Arjuna has obtained every Indian Divinity in this Lostbelt's history, right?

Rama: Then, that would mean...Sita is one of them.

Fujimaru 1: Really!?

Rama: Just as I am an avatar of Vishnu,Sita is an avatar of Vishnu's consort, Lakshmi.

Rama: Of course, that doesn't mean they are one and the same...but they're certainly close enough. So then, what should I do?

Rama: What else? I have to save her. That is who I am. It's my very reason for existing.

Peperoncino: So love is your main motivator for defeating Arjuna...Well that's just beautiful.

Mash: What do you think of Arjuna, Pepe?

Peperoncino: Me? It's like I said. I thought he and this world were a dead end the moment I met him.

Peperoncino: Can't get much further from my type than this version of Arjuna. He might be a pretty face, but that soul of his is ugly as sin.

Mash: ...

Mash: Master, there may not be any need for me to say this,but please let me say it again anyway.

Mash: Pepe is...a good person. I believe we can trust him, and I think we should work together with him on this.

Fujimaru 1: I think so too.

Fujimaru 2: Looks like we're both on the same page, Mash.

Peperoncino: Aww, that's sweet♡ Thanks, you two.

Holmes: Nonetheless, the fact remains that you are a Crypter.

Holmes: Are you truly about to let your assigned Lostbelt be destroyed? What will you say to the others?

Peperoncino: Why, I'll just say “I did my best,but it wasn't good enough. Oopsie. ”

Peperoncino: I don't want to get on their bad side, either. I'm just going with the flow here.

Goredolf: Hmph, well I trust you even less now. If you're so easygoing, why did you join the Crypters in the first place?

Goredolf: You could have just turned them down from the start.

Peperoncino: ...Well that was a cruel thing to say.

Goredolf: H-huh...?

???: ...Circumstantial change confirmed.

???: I have a proposal for you chosen ones. An offer for those of you who were cast aside.

???: If you desire acclamation, then choose rebirth. If you desire indolence, then choose eternal sleep.

???: It makes no difference to a god.

Peperoncino: I didn't want to have to tell you this,but we didn't have any choice.

Peperoncino: “Thawing the Coffins” might not sound like a big deal, but it's basically like recovering dead bodies.

Peperoncino: We were all dead in there. We were never going to wake up from that darkness.

Peperoncino: But then, the Foreign God came and told us:

Peperoncino: “You may live on as a Crypter, or die as a Master. ”

Peperoncino: And that was that.

Mash: ...!

Peperoncino: Honestly, I still don't know who or what this Foreign God is.

Peperoncino: Kirschtaria seems like he does...but he's not one to talk.

Peperoncino: All I know is, in exchange for being given new life, we were to be thrown out into this newly wiped-clean world...

Peperoncino: ...and put in charge of growing our respective Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness.

Peperoncino: Of course, I know we betrayed all of mankind when we chose to leave our Coffins as Crypters, so I'm not under any illusion that we're the real victims here.

Peperoncino: I'll even admit that I thought this game to see who'll get to be king of the world sounded fun.

Peperoncino: Whatever will be will be, you know? If an old monk friend of mine were here now, he'd probably say something like:

Peperoncino: “You guys were just unlucky. ”

Ganesha: ...

Peperoncino: Still, there's nothing to be gained from cursing your fate, and besides, I was already getting bored with it.

Peperoncino: So I'm just going to do the best I can,and try not to throw my life away for nothing.

Peperoncino: I'm not going to sell out my fellow Crypters, and I have no desire to fight all of you to the death either.

Peperoncino: And since that works out for both of us,isn't that good enough for now?

Mash: ...Then, does that mean nobody on Team A willingly chose to side with the Foreign God?

Peperoncino: Hehe, I don't know about all of us, but me, Kadoc, and Ophelia sure didn't. Oh, wait, I guess Ophelia's an exception.

Peperoncino: She swore to become a Crypter for her own,very personal reasons.

Mash: ...Then please, just tell me one thing. Where does the name “Crypters” come from?

Mash: Is it a code name for something? Did the Foreign God give it to you?

Peperoncino: No waaay! You're really bringing that up now!? Oh, right, I just remembered!

Peperoncino: You never knew this, did you, Mashie? Now it all makes sense!

Peperoncino: The name “Crypters”...

Peperoncino: ...comes from Director Marisbury. It was the title he gave to the special Masters who were chosen for Team A.

Peperoncino: Anywho! Let's talk about how exactly we can go about beating Arjuna!

Peperoncino: 'Cause I'll be honest, I've got nothing. Ahahaha!

Rama: This is no laughing matter. He even shrugged off my Noble Phantasm like it was nothing.

Rama: Although now I understand why...It's because his very divine existence is just that strong.

Rama: There's no trick or even magecraft involved. It's just what he is, plain and simple.

Ganesha: Geez, so he even cheats just by existing!? How in the world are we supposed to beat him then?

Peperoncino: Honestly, you're in much worse shape to fight him now that Karnie's out of the picture.

Peperoncino: I just don't see how Ganesha there could ever fill his shoes, no matter how hard she tries.

Ganesha: Hey, you don't have to rub it in. Believe me, I'm well aware.

Fujimaru 1: Maybe there's someone else who could help us?

Fujimaru 2: I say we go look for Ganesha Number 2.

Holmes: True, there could well be another Rogue Servant here. If we could find them and win them over, it would be the fastest and surest way of bolstering our ranks.

Rama: That would be great, but it is a big “if. ”

Da Vinci: Well, if there is anyone else like Ganesha around here, there's a good chance someone in town might know about them.

Da Vinci: Why don't we head back to Bichu again and see what we can find out?

Peperoncino: Sounds good to me! Then what are we waiting for!? Like they say, no road is long with good company, and it's best to make hay while the sun shines! Eeeeee☆

Peperoncino: Don't worry about a thing! I'll make sure we never run out of things to talk about on the way!

Rama: Ah...I can't say that was actually a concern...

Mash: ...

Mash: (...)

Peperoncino: We didn't have any choice.

Mash: (That's right...I'd forgotten that. )

Mash: (Everyone had their reasons for making the choices they did. That's why things ended up like this. )

Mash: (Nice people...Not so nice people...People who were interested in me...People who weren't interested in me...)

Mash: (I know everyone on Team A. )

Mash: (I'd forgotten I knew that. I only just remembered that they were also people who lived in Chaldea. )

Mash: (That's why, right now, I...)

Mash: (...If I was stronger, maybe I wouldn't be feeling so conflicted right now. )

Mash: (If only I was a perfect Demi-Servant, then–)

Fujimaru 1: Mash?

Fujimaru 2: Something wrong?

Fou: Fooou?

Mash: O-oh, sorry, it's nothing!

Mash: ...It looks like we're almost there.

Mash: I already have an idea for who we can talk to first. It would be great if she knows something!

Asha: Other gods? Hmm...Ummm...

Mash: I guess you haven't heard anything then...

Peperoncino: Maybe using the word “god” isn't the best way to go about it. It might be better to take a different approach.

Peperoncino: We're looking for someone who is very much out of place in this world...In other words, someone who finds this place as wrong as we do.

Peperoncino: If someone like that exists, they'd probably be out fighting kali regardless of what yuga it is.

Peperoncino: So the question we should be asking is...

Peperoncino: Here, little miss, let me put it to you this way.

Peperoncino: Have you heard any rumors about naughty heretics who don't obey your god's teachings? Oh, besides us, of course.

Asha: Oh! I think the mayor would probably know something about that!

Prakash: Well, I wouldn't call them bad, exactly. Everything alive in this world is the god's creation, after all.

Prakash: But I would say they're just a bit too focused on the wrong things, unfortunately.

Prakash: Nonetheless, yes, I have heard there are people like that in the village on the other side of the mountain.

Prakash: I'm told they spend most of their time taking up weapons and fighting the kali, in defiance of the god's teachings.

Prakash: They certainly do things differently than we do in Bichu, where we accept god's trials with piety and grace...

Prakash: ...but I suppose that is just the way they choose to live their lives.

Mash: It's still a bit shocking how much more amiable he is now compared to when we first met him...

Mash: But at any rate, this is great! Now we have a promising lead! Let's head for this village right away, Master!

Da Vinci: Sounds good to me, but just be aware that you might not be able to get there by nightfall.

Da Vinci: I think it's better if we don't move around too much in the middle of the night, so if you find a good place to make camp, don't be shy about doing just that. Okay?

Ganesha: Don't worry about that! I hate going at a forced march. If I have to go hiking, I make sure to take it nice and slow.

Ganesha: As long as I'm around, I won't be letting anyone push themselves too hard. Not even if they want to!


Ganesha: (Zzz)

Mash: We'll be heading back out at dawn, Pepe. Are you sure you don't need to get some sleep?

Peperoncino: What about you, Mashie? You're still standing watch this late?

Mash: I'm a Demi-Servant, so I'm fine going without sleep for a while.

Peperoncino: Hmm. Funny how you're okay without sleep, but the Divine Spirit Servant over there apparently can't get enough...

Peperoncino: Well, that's okay. This works out nicely for me. Mind if I stand watch with you for a while?

Mash: Uh, no, that's fine with me...

Peperoncino: That was only a pretense, of course. I was actually just waiting for a good chance to ask you this.

Peperoncino: ...Did you get a chance to talk to Ophelia?

Mash: ...Yes, I did.

Mash: We didn't have a lot of time...but I still feel like we said a lot.

Mash: Much more than we ever expressed to each other in Chaldea.

Peperoncino: Hehe, I'm glad to hear that.

Peperoncino: She always did want to have a good heart-to-heart with you. I could tell.

Peperoncino: So? What'd you talk about?

Mash: Well, one of our topics...

Mash: ...was romance.

Peperoncino: No way! Seriously?

Peperoncino: Aww, what I wouldn't give to have been a fly on the wall for that!

Peperoncino: I can't think of anything better than Ophelia talking about romance.

Peperoncino: I can just imagine the three of us chatting over a nice cup of tea, hours passing in the blink of an eye...

Mash: Do you...know what happened to everyone, Pepe...?

Peperoncino: I heard what happened from Kirschtaria and the others, yes. But those are just boring old facts. That's not what I really want to know.

Peperoncino: That's why I wanted to ask you about them directly.

Mash: ...I see. I don't think there's anything I need to keep secret, so I'm happy to answer any questions you have.

Peperoncino: Even though I'm a Crypter? Even though I'm your enemy?

Mash: Yes. I remembered that, despite everything that's happened...we were still both members of Team A.

Mash: That hasn't changed just because you're a Crypter now, too.

Peperoncino: I see. Well thank you.

Peperoncino: I'm sure Kadoc, Ophelia, and Akuta are frustrated by how things turned out...but I doubt they have any regrets.

Peperoncino: So they all fought bravely, huh. And here I am,just pathetically doing whatever I can to survive.

Mash: I don't think that's anything you need to feel bad about...

Peperoncino: Hey, I'm still on the Crypters' side. I can't help but be frustrated too.

Peperoncino: No matter how hard it is to survive...I still find myself thinking there might've been a better way to end things.

Peperoncino: Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to bring down the mood.

Peperoncino: If things don't go your way even after you've struggled as much as you can, your only choice is to give up and move on. I just had to come to terms with that again.

Peperoncino: That's just my lot in life, I'm afraid. Nothing I do ever quite seems to work out.

Mash: Really? But, you've always seemed to me like you excel at everything you do...

Peperoncino: Hehe. That's only because I stick to things I know I can do. No, I'm talking about fate and destiny...

Peperoncino: But hey, that can be extremely motivating in its own right. And it's not like I've given up on everything, you know?

Mash: ...

Peperoncino: All right, I think it's time I got to bed. A complexion this perfect requires pleeenty of sleep.

Peperoncino: Besides, how could I look Ophelia in the eye if I neglected my own skin care after I kept admonishing her?

Peperoncino: ...Thank you for telling me what happened with the other Crypters, Mashie. Good night.

Mash: Of course. Good night, Pepe...

Section 8: The Queen of the Walled Village

Woman: Khh...Aaah!

Man A: Damn sacred beasts! Of all the luck,running into a huge pack of them like this!

???: It seems luck was not on our side today. I was hoping we could pass them by without incident, but oh well.

Man A: ...■■■■■!

Man B: I-I'm so sorry. I was so close to them that I ended up drawing my bow in fear!

???: Don't worry about it. The blame is partly mine, for forgetting how it feels to hold a weapon for the first time.

???: I'll need to reevaluate both the technical and mental aspects of our training program...

???: At any rate, the rest of you hurry back to the village. I'll hold them off here.

Woman: B-but...!?

???: No buts. We can't risk leading them towards the village.

???: Besides, the more commotion we make, the more likely we are to be captured by the Lōkapāla we've been hearing rumors about.

???: The Lōkapāla are said to serve god directly, and have incredible power in their own right. The moment they find us, it's over. We can't let that happen.

???: I could manage on my own if it came to that, but if you or the village caught their eye, it would be disastrous.

???: So I want you all to head back to Dival ahead of me. And don't forget the supplies we collected.

Man: But you can't possibly handle them all on your own!

???: Don't worry. My plan isn't to defeat them all. I'll just be buying us time...and I am well accustomed to trials of endurance.

???: Besides, I already told you.

???: I am not human. I am something else...something with the power of a thousand ordinary people.

???: A shadow of humanity who manifested in this land by the grace of the rightful gods!!!

Da Vinci: I know this isn't the first time we've had to stay behind, but man, it sucks not being able to actually drive around in our vehicle. What's the point of even having it then?

Goredolf: Don't be ridiculous! If the enemy were to find and destroy the Border, the jig would be well and truly up.

Goredolf: Camouflage function or not, we still need to make sure we stay out of sight at all times!

Goredolf: That mad dash we made to pick up the field team during the Kali Yuga was under the most extenuating of circumstances! There will be no repeat performance!

Da Vinci: Yeah, yeah, I was just grumbling. I know you're right on this one, Gordy.

Holmes: Oh? Just a moment. Do you think you can stop and hide in that tall grass over there?

Mash: Yes. I'll set the Ortinax to silent mode. Please be as quiet as you can, everyone...

Fou: ...Fooou...

Fujimaru 1: That's a lot of sacred beasts...

Fujimaru 2: It was almost like watching a sacred beast parade.

Mash: Luckily, they don't seem to have noticed us. Let's stay here and wait for them to pass.

Peperoncino: They're certainly very pretty to look at. No wonder the people here call them agents of god.

Ganesha: They really are just like any other animal without any kali around, huh. I wonder what they eat. Maybe we could use food to tame them?

Peperoncino: ...

Fujimaru 1: They're gone...

Rama: Good. Then let's keep going. It shouldn't be much farther to our destination village.

Fou: Fou fou!

Mash: I see something. That must be it over there. Thank goodness we didn't run into any trouble on the way.

Ganesha: Hmm, I like the wall they've put up here. Gives the place a real freedom fighter vibe.

Rama: The mayor of Bichu did say they go around fighting kali here. If anything, I would be surprised if their village wasn't fortified like this.

Rama: ...Hm?

Man: Come on, hurry!

Woman: It's us! Open the gate, quick!

Mash: ...Those people seemed to be in an awfully big hurry to get inside. I wonder what that was all about?

Ganesha: Looks like we were far enough away from 'em that they didn't notice us.

Rama: But did you see? They may have only been modified farm implements, but they were still carrying weapons.

Rama: They really do seem to be different from the people of Bichu. We may well be able to learn something new here.

Peperoncino: I think you're right. Let's go see!

Rama: ...Hmm. They're not opening the gate for us.

Peperoncino: And they're not answering when we knock, either.

Rama: Heeey! Open the gate for us!

Rama: I'll have you know most nations would be thrilled to have me pay them a visit!

Mash: Let me see if I can hear anything from inside...

Woman's Voice: Who was that!? Is someone here!?

Man's Voice: Oh no...Aaah! This is it! They found us! We're done for!

Woman's Voice: What do we do!? What're we gonna do!?

Man's Voice: How should I know!?

Man's Voice: There's no way we can fight them off on our own.

Man's Voice: We'll just have to keep the gate closed until she gets back!

Mash: I'm not sure why, but they sound very...agitated...

Goredolf: Oh, I've got a bad feeling about this. And my bad feelings about this sort of thing have a way of always being right.

Ganesha: At least we know there're people inside.

Ganesha: And since we're Servants, we could probably just jump over the wall if we have to.

Ganesha: Of course, just 'cause we can doesn't mean we–

???: You there! What are you doing here!?

Fou: Fou!?

Holmes: ...A Servant reading. Well, it seems luck is with you today, Master.

Holmes: Of course, we aren't yet sure whether this is good or bad luck.

Holmes: Whoever this Servant is, they're headed your way at top speed. Be on your guard!

Mash: They just jumped clean over us and landed on top of the gate!

Mash: It's a Servant we've never met before!

Peperoncino: Well that's too bad. It would've made things a lot simpler if you already knew each other.

Ganesha: I hate getting chewed out by strangers. It's like a hundred times worse than when it's someone you know.

Ganesha: What I'm trying to say is, this lady looks really pissed off at us, so maybe do something about that?

???: That divine aura...Curses. Despite my best efforts,it looks like you finally found us.

???: You must be the ones who serve the false god...The Lōkapāla!

Fujimaru 1: Huh!? I-I think you've got the wrong idea!

Rama: Whoa, whoa, slow down. Us, the Lōkapāla? You must be joking.

???: Don't lie to me. It can't be a coincidence that you've shown up now.

???: Besides...I heard you planning to invade our village by jumping over these walls!

Ganesha: I have no idea what you're talking about, but I'm sure this is just a misunderstanding! I only mentioned jumping the wall to rule it out as a bad ide–

???: So, you continue to lie to me.

???: Very well. If you have finally learned of my existence, and the existence of this village that seeks to end the false god's cycle, then so be it.

???: I will run and hide no longer. If the time has come to fight, then I shall rise to the challenge.

???: Prepare yourselves, Lōkapāla. You will not be taking anything from me this day.

???: Even if I must face a god...this time,I will make sure to defend my home to the very end!


Limbo: Mmm...

Limbo: Yes, I'm aware. I'm well aware indeed. The fox woman is up to something, isn't she?

Limbo: Then if I may, allow me to tell you something. Something of great importance.

God Arjuna: ...

Limbo: Oh, no, no, no. Of course I would leave the decision of what to do with this information entirely in your capable hands. All I would humbly ask of you is your attention.

Limbo: That said, I must stress that depending on how things turn out, matters could grow very serious indeed.

Limbo: Why, what if my colleague, one of the Foreign God's Disciples ostensibly sent here to help you...

Limbo: ...were to become the very sort of thing you cast out of your world...?

Mash: Please, listen to us! The Lōkapāla are our enemy as well.

Mash: We only came here in the hope of finding allies who could help us fight against them!

???: Talk is cheap. I've lost track of how many times someone claiming to be my friend betrayed me.

Voice Beyond The Wall: Hey, look! She's back! And she's fighting to protect us!

Voice Beyond The Wall: We're saved!

Voice Beyond The Wall: Then those ARE Lōkapāla! Dammit, they finally found our village...!

Voice Beyond The Wall: Please, my lady, help us! The Lōkapāla showed up right after we got back to the village. We've been barring the gate and holding out until you arrived!

???: There, you see? I knew you couldn't be trusted!

Goredolf: Argh, what did I tell you!? Misunderstandings only invite further misunderstandings!

Goredolf: I've seen this sort of thing before. Back in the Clock Tower...No, all of my life, really...

Goredolf: I would look around one day and realize everyone had forsaken me, even though I didn't do anything wrong...

Goredolf: Well, maybe that's not entirely accurate. There was this one time I–

Peperoncino: Sorry, hon, but your life story is gonna have to wait, mmkay?

Rama: The circumstances being what they are, she doesn't seem to truly be trying to kill us...but she's certainly very hardheaded. Her movements are as firm as her beliefs, it seems.

Ganesha: Hey, Rama. Are you feeling this too?

Rama: I am. It's faint...but she definitely has the air of a Divine Spirit. Maybe she's a Pseudo-Servant, like you?

Holmes: Good grief. I knew India had an expansive pantheon,but that can't be the answer for everything, can it?

Holmes: One does not generally run into a Divine Spirit at every corner, so to speak.

Peperoncino: Forget that! How do we get her to listen to us!? We'll never get anywhere if we don't clear up this misunderstanding!

Fujimaru 1: We've been telling her over and over, but she won't listen.

Fujimaru 2: I can't seem to get through to her no matter what I say...

Fou: Fou...

???: Well? Aren't you going to try to scale these walls? You'll need to do better than–

???: ...? Is that...!?

Fujimaru 1: It looks like something caught her eye...

Fujimaru 2: Why'd she jump back onto the wall?

???: ...

Mash: She seems to be looking at something far away...What's going on?

Holmes: Well, this is certainly less than optimal. I know you're in the midst of a battle, but I strongly urge you to take note of your surroundings, particularly what is behind you. Immediately.

Fujimaru 1: Behind us?

Rama: What!? Sacred beasts!?

Ganesha: Huh!? Wait, this pack looks kind of familiar...Are these the ones that passed us by earlier?

Peperoncino: Those were going in a different direction, and I'm pretty sure they didn't notice us at all.

Peperoncino: Maybe there's something here that lured them this way?

???: A different group from the sacred beasts we encountered earlier? Of all the times for them to show up...

???: No, this is no coincidence. It only makes sense that the Lōkapāla would have the means to control them.

???: They must be trying to make their way into our village and “cleanse” it. Especially since one of our elderly died this morning.

Mash: ...?

???: Begone, foul agents of the false god! You will not be claiming our dead today!

Peperoncino: My, my. She does make for quite the striking figure, doesn't she?

Mash: She certainly does.

Mash: She must be the manifestation of a noble Heroic Spirit, here to guide the people of this place along the right pa–

Mash: !?

Rama: What happened!? Did something knock her off the wall!?

Mash: No, um...It looked to me like she just...sort of...lost her footing.

Ganesha: Now she's wriggling around where she fell...It looks like her feet're stuck in some hole in the ground.

???: Curses. I can't believe I fell right into one of the pitfalls we dug to prepare for the next kali attack...!

???: ...

???: Give me a moment. I'll be out of here in no time.

Ganesha: Looks like they're pissed off about all the dramatic tension evaporating! Though I could just be projecting there!

Mash: We can't let the sacred beasts hurt her while she's incapacitated. Let's take them down and keep her safe, Master!

Fujimaru 1: You know it! Get 'em, guys!

Fou: Fooou!


Mash: All hostiles in our vicinity, eliminated. Well done, everyone.

???: ...

Rama: Well? Now do you understand we aren't your enemy?

???: ...Yes, I do. I'm not so foolish as to insist otherwise at this point. I see now that I was gravely mistaken.

???: No one who would fight against the sacred beasts could possibly be allies of the false god.

???: I am truly, sincerely sorry,and I thank you for your assistance.

???: Please, tell me why you have come here. No, on second thought, it's only right that I tell you about myself first.

Rama: Yes, you have a point. All right then, let me first ask you this: Are you a Divine Spirit?

???: Yes and no. I am a Servant, but right now, a goddess resides within my body, sharing her power with me.

???: When I was first summoned to this land,she was already there inside me.

Da Vinci: Hmm. There've been plenty of cases where a Divine Spirit would inhabit a person from the past to become a Servant...

Da Vinci: And since Heroic Spirit Servants are technically people from the past, I guess it makes sense that a Divine Spirit could inhabit one of them, too.

Da Vinci: Though I definitely haven't heard of many cases where it happened quite like this.

???: I expect it's because this god and I happen to share the same name.

???: I believe having words, sounds, and names match is very significant when it comes to magecraft.

???: Then again, I was originally given this name in the hope of receiving her blessing, so perhaps it isn't much of a coincidence after all...

Da Vinci: You don't say. Okay, that makes sense.

Fujimaru 1: So what is that god's name?

???: ...

???: ...Lakshmi.

???: And I am the Rani of Jhansi, a land which once existed in India, who was named for her...

???: My name is Lakshmi Bai.


Fou: Fou fooou?

Fujimaru 1: Lakshmi Bai...?

Lakshmi: I would like to think that anyone would be a bit embarrassed to recount the history of their own life...

Lakshmi: matter how proud of that life they may be.

Da Vinci: So that's why Holmes has been so unusually quiet...(Sigh) All right then, I guess I'll–

Captain: ...Lakshmi Bai is a hero from nineteenth century India known for her role in the Indian Rebellion.

Da Vinci: Oh? ...Hehe, thanks for jumping in, Captain. Why don't you take it from here?

Captain: Despite being born to royalty, she took up a sword and led a small rebel army in order to protect her nation of Jhansi.

Captain: She was known far and wide for her leadership and charisma.

Captain: ...At the time, revolts were breaking out all across India, under all manner of different circumstances.

Captain: When one small state tried to revolt, the neighboring nations would often end up siding with the British...

Captain: ...isolating the rebels and cutting them off from working with like-minded people in other regions.

Captain: But the Jhansi rebels managed to hold out till the very end.

Captain: And it was all thanks to their exceptional leader, Lakshmi Bai.

Lakshmi: ...I wouldn't call myself exceptional. I was just flailing around trying to hold everything together as best I could.

Lakshmi: Between Kunwar Singh, Tatya Tope, and many others I could name, there were no end of leaders more talented than me.

Lakshmi: All that aside, you sound like you know a lot about our struggle. Are you Indian yourself?

Captain: ...I'm nobody. Just another Nameless. It doesn't matter where I'm from. I'm done now. Over and out.

Da Vinci: ...While we're at it, we should probably also go over your Divine Spirit, Lakshmi.

Da Vinci: Though I'm sure Ganesha and Rama know a lot more about her than I do.

Da Vinci: In Indian mythology, Lakshmi is known as the goddess of fortune, prosperity, beauty, and–

Rama: And the consort of Vishnu...Right. That's right!

Rama: Then...could it be...?

Rama: I am an avatar of Vishnu,and Sita an avatar of Lakshmi.

Rama: Sita, are you in there? I'm sure if you are,I'll be able to feel your presence!

Rama: ...Hmm.

Rama: I'm guessing this is clear to all of you as well, given that her grip on my skull is strong enough the bones are starting to crack...

Rama: ...but unfortunately,I sense no trace of Sita inside her.

Lakshmi: Who is this man, advancing on a woman he's never met before as if to propose to her? Do you mind if I break him?

Mash: I-I understand how you feel, but please go easy on him! Rama has his own complicated history!

Lakshmi: I see...I suppose I can't blame him for misunderstanding. I should have been more precise.

Lakshmi: The goddess Lakshmi exists within me more as a power source than anything else. I can barely sense her consciousness at all.

Lakshmi: It's almost as though her heart has been implanted in me to provide me with energy.

Lakshmi: I doubt my output can measure up to that of an unadulterated Divine Spirit.

Lakshmi: So I'm afraid I am not a manifestation of the goddess Lakshmi so much as my core is that of the human, Rani Lakshmi Bai, with small elements of the goddess.

Rama: Then...Sita really doesn't exist inside you,as I suspected. Right. Of course she doesn't.

Rama: Now that I think about it, if she had, I would have sensed her well before you introduced yourself.

Rama: But I was not even able to tell that the deity within you was Lakshmi.

Rama: You must have only her divine power and nothing of her consciousness.

Ganesha: Ganesha didn't realize who you were either.

Ganesha: Of course, that might be 'cause he was never very close to you, seeing as how you're just as up there in the pantheon as his mom, Pārvatī.

Lakshmi: Ganesha? ...Yes, now that you mention it, I do sense a divine presence inside I would never in a million years have guessed by looking at you.

Ganesha: Yeah, I know, but it's true. Believe me, I've spent pretty much this entire time wishing all this were just some weird joke.

Rama: And I am Rama, the King of Kosala. Surely you've heard of me, as well as my beloved Sita?

Lakshmi: Oh, of course! There's not a soul in India who doesn't know your name.

Lakshmi: Forgive me. I thought you were just an, um, unusually youthful young man who hadn't yet learned how to behave around women.

Fujimaru 1: Maybe now's a good time to share our side?

Da Vinci: Good point. We have a bunch of things we need to tell you about.

Da Vinci: Who we are...How we got here...What we're trying to do...It's a long story, but I hope you'll bear with us.

Da Vinci: ...And I think that about sums it up.

Goredolf: Hold it, hold it! What about me!?

Goredolf: I thought you were saving the most important figure in our group for the end so as to make a lasting impression!

Da Vinci: Uh, yes, this is Goredolf Musik, who I absolutely, positively, definitely didn't forget to introduce. Nope.

Da Vinci: As you can probably tell from his sheer girth–I mean, his dignified stature, he's our commander in chief☆

Goredolf: Hehe, indeed I am. A stout build is the mark of a true elite, after all! As the commanding officer here, I expect you to treat me with all due respect.

Lakshmi: I have one question for you. Are you British?

Goredolf: Hm? Uh, no, I'm not.

Lakshmi: What about you?

Peperoncino: Me? Oh, hehe. That would be telling, hon. You've got to get to know me better first.

Peperoncino: I suppose I can at least tell you that no, I'm not British either. Though I did spend a good bit of time at the Clock Tower.

Da Vinci: Hoo boy...Well, there's one last person in our group I should introduce you to.

Da Vinci: Sorry Holmes, the jig is up. You can't keep hiding forever.

Holmes: I assure you, I was doing no such thing. I was only waiting for a more opportune moment once things had settled down.

Holmes: Good day, Ms. Lakshmi Bai. Sherlock Holmes, detective, at your service.

Lakshmi: Are you British?

Holmes: Yes, I am.

Lakshmi: ...

Fujimaru 1: ...Is that a problem?

Fujimaru 2: Ohhh...

Da Vinci: The Indian Rebellion was...Well, it was a war for India's independence against its colonizers, the British.

Da Vinci: And since Lakshmi Bai lost her life in that conflict,I imagine she has some strong feelings about it.

Da Vinci: (Though I do get the impression there's someone else here with some connection to that...)

Captain: ...

Da Vinci: (Oh well, guess it's not my place to say anything here. )

Holmes: I was only a few years old when that war broke out, so while I can't personally apologize for my country's actions–

Lakshmi: ...No, it's all right. I'm sorry. That was rude of me.

Lakshmi: There is little sense in my asking that. It's just an old habit...One I can't seem to shake.

Holmes: You have nothing to apologize for. It's not for me to say whether you should or shouldn't feel that way.

Holmes: Nor is it for me to say whether you should hold onto those feelings, or try to forget them.

Holmes: All I can say for sure is that our countries' histories are intertwined. Certainly neither of us can pretend otherwise.

Holmes: If this hadn't come up now, Fujimaru would no doubt have noticed the air of discomfort between us...

Holmes: ...and gone on to learn what happened between our countries for [♂ himself /♀ herself].

Holmes: ...If there is any meaning to be found by having people from the past come together like this–besides the role we play as Servants, of course–I suspect it lies there.

Lakshmi: ...Agreed. I will think of you as no more than a man by the name of Sherlock Holmes.

Lakshmi: Besides, under these circumstances,the more allies we have, the better.

Mash: Then...does that mean you consider us allies?

Lakshmi: It was difficult to convince the people of Dival of the wrongness of this situation...but once I did, they agreed to work together to forge their own destiny.

Lakshmi: Their village here is now the base for all such like-minded people.

Lakshmi: As you are warriors fighting against god, just like us, I would be honored if you fought at our side!

Fujimaru 1: It's a deal!

Fou: Fooou, fou!

Da Vinci: I guess the Counter Force must've summoned you too. Have you been here long?

Lakshmi: Yes. I'd say it's been at least ten days since I arrived.

Holmes: Then you must have been caught in the world's recreation a number of times. How did you survive?

Peperoncino: God or not, remaking this entire Lostbelt is a major undertaking.

Peperoncino: Arjuna wouldn't change how he goes about it just because a Servant's been added to the mix.

Peperoncino: So long as he doesn't think of you as unnecessary or defective, I expect he'd just bring you back along with all the other people.

Peperoncino: Ugh. It just galls me thinking how our very survival in this Lostbelt...

Peperoncino: completely dependent on his absurdly arbitrary standards.

Rama: It's natural for gods to be somewhat self-centered given their immense power, but Arjuna definitely takes it too far.

Peperoncino: Oh, speaking of which, you should know he's already got his eye on us.

Peperoncino: So if you join us, you're sure to wind up with the whole “evil” label, and you won't be able to survive the world being remade anymore.

Lakshmi: That's fine. It could only have been a matter of time before he took notice of me anyway.

Lakshmi: Besides, you have a way to evade the destruction, yes? So if it comes to that, I'll be counting on your help.

Mash: You mean the Border? Yes, of course you'd be welcome to join us in there.... Wouldn't she?

Goredolf: The Border is the last bastion of hope for all of humanity. We can't just go letting any old Servant we meet on it.

Goredolf: ...Er, under ordinary circumstances, anyway. But in this case, I suppose we do have a fair handle on her True Name and background.

Goredolf: And it would be a shame to lose a valuable ally so soon after finding one...Very well, I'll authorize your entry into the Border in case of emergency.

Lakshmi: ...You have my gratitude.

Goredolf: Of course, ideally, I hope to be quite finished with this place long before he even uses that preposterous Noble Phantasm of his again.

Peperoncino: You said it, honey. Fortunately, he only ever does that at the end of the Kali Yuga.

Peperoncino: So it would be just peachy if we could put a stop to all this before then.

Ganesha: So, now that we've got a new ally and all...what's our next step?

Holmes: I've already got something in mind for that. There are risks involved, naturally, but the rewards should be significant.

Holmes: Now that we're in the middle of the first, relatively peaceful yuga, and especially now that we have more allies, this would seem to be the perfect time to investigate one thing in particular.

Fujimaru 1: What's that?

Da Vinci: Hehehe. Remember that thing we've been wondering about ever since we came to this Lostbelt?

Da Vinci: It's the biggest, most mysterious thing here by far, and it's got to contain some useful information. Now, we want you guys to finally go and investigate it.

Mash: ...God's Skyboulder!

Section 9: God's Skyboulder

Mash: So you don't know what God's Skyboulder is either then, Lakshmi?

Lakshmi: No, I don't. It was there when I was first summoned here, and it hasn't changed at all in the time since.

Lakshmi: At least, I don't think it has. I haven't been watching it this whole time, so I can't say for certain.

Peperoncino: Well, I have been watching it this whole time,so I can. It definitely never changed.

Rama: Since we haven't actually asked,you don't know what it is either, correct?

Peperoncino: That's right. I just noticed there was a big, weird cube in this Lostbelt, and didn't think anything more of it.

Peperoncino: I mean, sure, I considered investigating it and getting rid of it in case it turned out to be something dangerous, since it is so bizarre and all...

Peperoncino: But I hadn't the slightest idea how to go about it,so I decided to just keep an eye on the thing.

Peperoncino: (Not to mention Daybit told me I was better off leaving it alone. )

Peperoncino: (...Don't dismiss something before you've seen its true nature, huh. True, if I did, I'd be no better than Arjuna. )

Lakshmi: It was the same with me. I didn't know what it was,so I couldn't do anything about it.

Lakshmi: I could see that giant tree and the cube no matter where I went, but I had more pressing matters to attend to.

Lakshmi: Rather than bother with something I knew nothing about, I figured my time would be better spent helping the people here who had been led astray by this unjust god.

Rama: That is very admirable of you. But are you sure it's okay to leave that village unattended?

Lakshmi: They should be fine during the early yugas. Especially while there are barely any kali around.

Lakshmi: They have weapons now, even if they were hastily assembled, and I've taught them how to fight as best I can.

Lakshmi: They should be able to handle themselves in a pinch. The only thing I'm worried about right now are the sacred–There.

Mash: It's another pack of sacred beasts, Master. Let's hide and wait for them to pass again.

Ganesha: Hmm, it's not just sacred beasts. There's something else there, next to the road.

Ganesha: Wait. Is that...a person?

Holmes: I'm not picking up any vital signs. I'm afraid it's a dead body. Perhaps they died of disease, or in an accident...

Rama: Why are you going over to it?

Lakshmi: Damn. We're too late...

Peperoncino: ...

Fujimaru 1: The body's disappearing...!

Lakshmi: So you didn't know then? That's one of this world's mistakes. The sacred beasts purify the bodies of anyone who happens to die unexpectedly.

Mash: ...!

Lakshmi: My guess is the false god thinks dead bodies don't belong out in the world, and wants them gone as soon as possible.

Holmes: I see. So if this world were a single entity, the sacred beasts are the white blood cells of its immune system.

Holmes: Since we can assume this world's god would be the head, the sacred beasts must be its macrophages, created to detect, isolate, and remove any foreign elements...

Holmes: So then, does that mean the kali they fight are something like a virus? Most intriguing.

Lakshmi: ...Whatever the case, people are people. When they die, they shouldn't just be cleaned up like trash.

Lakshmi: Their karma should determine what they become in their next life. At least, that's what my people believe.

Lakshmi: That's what a true Saṃsāra cycle is meant to be.

Lakshmi: We cremate dead bodies to free their souls, and ensure they go on to their next life without issue.

Lakshmi: But long as the sacred beasts are around, nobody will be able to hold a proper cremation.

Lakshmi: If this world has no respect for the journey of the dead, and no hope for those who are left behind...

Lakshmi: ...then it is nothing but a world of death.

Rama: So that's why you were concerned about the sacred beasts showing up in Dival.

Rama: Because one of your elderly had passed away.

Lakshmi: Right. He was an old man whose time had come. There is nothing anyone could do about that...

Lakshmi: ...but I didn't want the false god stealing our right to give him a proper farewell. You really helped us out there.

Ganesha: ...They're finally leaving.

Holmes: If they haven't already spotted you,then I would urge you to hold back for now.

Holmes: You're almost to God's Skyboulder, and I would very much prefer to avoid making a commotion wherever possible.

Lakshmi: I know. I would have stopped them if I had found the body first, but as things stand now, my only choice is to let them go...

Mash: We should be okay now. I'm certain the sacred beasts can't detect us from this far away.

Lakshmi: Good. I'm glad I didn't have to sneeze while we were hiding. Let's go.

Mash: (Wow. I knew she was cool and collected, but I didn't know she also had such a charming sense of humor...)

Peperoncino: My, my, seeing it this close up really makes you realize just how big it actually is, doesn't it?

Peperoncino: Ooh, I've got an idea. Why don't we take a little group photo to commemorate the occasion?

Fujimaru 1: Pepeee!

Fujimaru 2: Look behind you! Behind you!

Rama: Was that a joke, or were you just trying to avoid facing the reality of our situation? Either way, it wasn't funny.

Ganesha: If you want a pic, go ahead and take all the selfies you want. Just don't come running to me if the whole thing turns into a jump scare.

Fou: Fou fou, fooou!

Peperoncino: Aww, you guys are no fun. I was just trying to lighten the mood a little.

Da Vinci: So, um...These numbers we're seeing are accurate, right? Our sensors aren't on the fritz or anything, right?

Mash: That's right. We made it to the area near the cube without a problem, but...

Rama: Where did all these kali come from!? I thought there were barely supposed to be any during the Kṛta Yuga!?

Lakshmi: I think it's the place, not the time.

Lakshmi: They're showing up as though they've just been here all along, rather than coming from somewhere else.

Mash: Be that as it may, the sheer number of them is almost absurd.

Mash: There are as many here as there were during the Kali Yuga...Maybe even more!

Ganesha: Hey, I've got an idea! Why don't we just run away! Seriously!

Lakshmi: You have a point. We can't investigate the cube with all these kali around. Annoying, since we just got here.

Lakshmi: If they surround us, we'll have nowhere to go.

Holmes: True, we can only take so many risks when it comes to safety. And there's certainly nothing to be gained by attempting to complete an impossible goal.

Fujimaru 1: Guess we don't have any other choice...

Fujimaru 2: We're getting out of here! Now!

Mash: Understood! We'll break through the kali behind us and make a run for it! Awaiting your orders, Master!


Ganesha: (Huff, huff) Okay, I think that's enough distance between us and them.

Holmes: I never imagined there would be that many kali gathered there.

Holmes: I expected it might be dangerous, but with numbers like that, adding one more to our ranks still won't be enough to fend them off.

Lakshmi: You don't have to rub it in. I wish my Noble Phantasm were capable of blasting them all away at once, too.

Holmes: My apologies; I assure you I was not speaking sarcastically. I was merely reflecting on my failure to foresee a situation like this.

Lakshmi: I see. That's all ri–No, I'm sorry. I was being oversensitive.

Lakshmi: ...While we're on the subject, this seems a good chance to tell you this. Naturally, I will do everything in my power to accomplish our mutual goal. I have no intention of holding back.

Lakshmi: But I should warn you, for your own safety, you shouldn't expect me to come through when it really counts.

Lakshmi: I have never truly been able to accomplish the things I most wish to do. That is just my lot in life.

Holmes: (Well that's a strange opinion to have of oneself. Perhaps her failure to defend her country in life had a traumatic effect on her? )

Holmes: ...Be that as it may, there is no doubt whatsoever that you are far more useful in combat than a detective in a remote location.

Holmes: So I hope you will continue to lend [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru your aid.

Lakshmi: Of course I will. I would be pleased if you trusted me on that much.

Mash: At any rate, there really were a ridiculous number of kali there. Lends the impression that it may be even more important to this Lostbelt than we thought.

Rama: Indeed. It was as though those kali were there solely to guard the Skyboulder.

Rama: The fact that we can no longer see them after putting just a little distance between us and the Skyboulder would only seem to confirm that.

Rama: I wonder what this could mean...

Peperoncino: ...

Da Vinci: For that matter, we still don't know what those kali demons actually are.

Da Vinci: I'm guessing Holmes is probably right in that they're like a virus infecting this world, in opposition of the sacred beasts...

Da Vinci: ...but still, we have not the slightest idea what they are, where they come from, or where they go...

Peperoncino: I don't know either, but I can say they're not any ordinary kind of creature.

Peperoncino: Given that they stick around even after the world is remade, maybe Arjuna uses them as a means to determine who is worth preserving...

Peperoncino: ...or maybe they just remain here out of necessity.

Peperoncino: If it's the latter, that would mean they're a crucial part of the stage Arjuna uses to run this world.

Peperoncino: So, if we defeat him...maybe they'll all just go poof?

Fujimaru 1: I guess this means we've just got to figure out what to do about Arjuna...

Holmes: At least we now know that God's Skyboulder is protected by vast numbers of kali, and can't be approached lightly.

Holmes: It may not be much, but it is more than we knew before.

Holmes: In the meantime, I suggest we return to Dival and plot our next course of action.

Section 10: God's Commander

Narration: Anger. Fury. Rage is all I've got.

Aśvatthāman: Goddamn bastard...

Narration: Servant memories are weird. It doesn't matter if they're from before your current body's age, or after.

Narration: Everything that ever happened to you while you were alive comes flooding into your head all at once.

Narration: They're simultaneously your own memories, and the recollections of a complete stranger. Facts you know to be true, and lies no more real than a dream.

Narration: ...I think that's why I remember–why I know what I once did.

Narration: I remember the end of the war, when I heard that Dhrishtadyumna's cowardly plot had succeeded, that my father had been killed.

Narration: I remember when I heard that Bhima had cheated to inflict a fatal wound on Duryodhana, the oldest of the hundred Kaurava princes.

Narration: Everything inside of me vowed then that I would make them pay.

Narration: I swore I would exact revenge on them by any means necessary.

Narration: So I chose to sneak in under the cover of night and murder all of my enemies in their sleep.

Narration: You think that cowardly? Criminal? An affront to all that is good and just? I don't care. I don't care! I don't care!!!

Narration: I was so angry I didn't care about anything else. I think that's when I threw away everything in me besides fury.

Narration: I let my fury swallow me whole until I was nothing more than a beast...a vessel of pure rage.

Narration: To put it another way...that was the moment when Aśvatthāman became no more than anger incarnate.

Narration: So of course, the peaceful scenery of the Kṛta Yuga only infuriates him. The sweet scent of pollen, the sun's gentle rays, the birds' happy chirping...his only response to it all is to grow ever more enraged.

Narration: Everything he sees, and doesn't see, makes him angry. But the things that anger him most...are those he sees both constantly, and never.

Narration: He is always angry. Always.

???: There we go. That takes care of the lost, out-of-season kali. Guess you can't even go through the Kṛta Yuga without running into at least one.

???: You know, there were always some dumb beasts up in the mountains who'd forget to hibernate for the winter, too.

???: I'd always hunt 'em whenever I happened to see one. There's no telling what sort of trouble a dumb beast could get up to.

???: Clearing away otherwise unfair or impossible obstacles is just part of the job.

Child: Th-thank you for saving me, god!

Child: It showed up so suddenly, and I haven't been praying since it's still Kṛta Yuga...

???: Ah, don't worry about it. And I'm not a god. Just a hired hand.

Child: ...?

???: Oh, sorry, you don't have to worry about that, either. Anyway, you did great holding it together. I'm proud of you.

Child: (O-oh man! I can't believe a god is patting my head! )

Child: Are you a god too!?

Nezha: Admonishment: You are late for the meeting. I had no choice but to come get you.

???: Whoops, is it that time already? Sorry 'bout that. Well, see you later, son.

Child: Oh, uh, bye! Thank you again!

Nezha: ...Do you like kids?

???: ...Who can say?

???: Hey, sorry I'm late.

Nezha: I cannot believe you made me carry you with my Wind Fire Wheels.

???: Hehe, well I had a great time. Thanks for the thrill ride.

???: 'Course, a lot of those thrills were more chills at the idea of showing up here late.

???: I'm just a regular guy. I'm not nearly important enough to keep a mythological hero waiting, let alone a god.

Nezha: Advice: There is no point saying what you do not mean. Besides, you're something of a mythological hero yourself now.

???: Anyway, I hate to steal the spotlight after showing up late to the party, but I got something to discuss.

???: Hmm. I was hoping Aśvatthāman could help with this,but I guess he's not here?

Nezha: Answer: I cannot predict his actions. Our Master allows him to act freely. Thus, I have no intention of picking him up.

???: Guess I'll just have to talk to you guys about this then, if that's all right with you.

???: Anyway, I just noticed a little while ago that there's fewer sacred beasts in my area than there's supposed to be.

Nezha: Query: You think it is them?

???: Probably. I'm guessing they have a way of surviving the big guy's Noble Phantasm.

???: Don't you find it interesting,seeing how you overcame death yourself?

???: What? Don't be ridiculous. That's just reconstruction. It has nothing to do with the concept of death. I couldn't care less about it.

???: So no, I don't find it interesting. Besides, I'm sure that guy there already knew. He just didn't say anything.

Limbo: Hehehehe? Well, yes, that's true.

Limbo: It is almost certainly the case that they managed to escape to a safe zone.

Limbo: But regardless, the fact remains that interlopers who would interfere with the god's sandbox–I mean, his beautiful reign–have survived.

Limbo: That strikes me as a grave problem. A very grave problem indeed, no?

God Arjuna: ...

Limbo: There! As you can see, he agrees with me quite vehemently!

Limbo: Indeed, as Lōkapāla whom he personally embedded with Divinities...

Limbo: ...surely you understand that much without the likes of me spelling it out, no?

Limbo: Now then, what do you plan to do about this?

???: Well, I'd just been planning to point Aśvatthāman in that direction and let him go nuts.

???: But if he's not here, he must be off on another job.

Limbo: Yes, that he is. I believe he's dealing with a little...unfinished business on our end...

???: Hmm. Guess that means we'll just have to take care of this ourselves then.

Nezha: Proposal: I will go.

Nezha: Not only do I have time to address the issue,but I also let them escape once. I will finish this.

???: Want some help?

Nezha: No need.

???: Great. Less work for me.

???: Just to be perfectly clear, I'm not going either. I've got plenty keeping me busy.

Nezha: Response: I never expected you to come. Departing now.... Wind Fire Wheels!

Limbo: Mmm, what a go-getter she is! How wonderful!

Limbo: What a pleasure to see such world-class mobility in person! I'm sure you won't let us down, Kubēra, Regent of the North!

Nezha: (...I finally have another chance. I have changed since then. Resolution: I will not let them get away this time! )

Goredolf: Damn, so we can't even get close to God's Skyboulder. And here I thought this would be our big breakthrough.

Goredolf: I was hoping we would find a way to take Arjuna down there. So much for that.

Ganesha: I knew it. I knew this wasn't gonna work out.

Ganesha: It never fails. On the rare occasion I ever try to actually put a little effort into something...

Ganesha: ...I just end up getting reminded of what a failure I am.

Ganesha: That's pretty much me in a nutshell. Waste of space.

Mash: It's not your fault it didn't work out, Ganesha. None of us expected there to be that many kali there.

Peperoncino: Exactly. Moping won't do you any good, hon. Let's try to stay positive, 'kay?

Fujimaru 1: I agree.

Fujimaru 2: There are limits to that.

Peperoncino: And getting past those limits is what separates the children from the grown-ups.

Peperoncino: It's like remembering to be grateful for the things you already have. That's a pretty important ability in my book.

Fou: Fo fooou.

Lakshmi: For my part, I was essentially fighting this battle alone until all of you came along.

Lakshmi: Now there's a chance, even if it's just a small one, for us to go on the offensive. I think that's progress in itself.

Lakshmi: Why don't we rest up for a while? Maybe that will help a good idea come to us.

Woman: Lady Lakshmi! Welcome back!

Lakshmi: Thanks for standing guard. Anything to note?

Woman: No, everything's been the same as usual here.

Mash: I see you're all armed here, unlike Ajai and the other people in Bichu.

Mash: I guess those rumors about you fighting the kali off instead of just praying were true.

Woman: You must be Lady Lakshmi's companions.

Woman: Yes, that's right. I'm afraid Lady Lakshmi had to explain it to us many times before we understood, but eventually...

Woman: ...we realized that there's something strange about this world. That we didn't like it here.

Rama: This has been the way things are for as long as you've known. I'm sure it wasn't easy to see them differently.

Woman: ...I think I once had someone I loved more than anything. But I can't even remember their name, or their face.

Mash: ...!

Peperoncino: Whoever it was must have been killed by a kali in a past yuga...

Peperoncino: Anyone who Arjuna considers defective, unnecessary, or evil disappears when a new yuga begins, as if they never even existed.

Peperoncino: But it makes sense that it would be exceptionally complex to adjust every single parameter in the world that pertained to the people who disappear.

Peperoncino: I guess not even Arjuna can completely erase their remnants...the holes they leave behind in the hearts of the people who cared for them...

Woman: Some of us realized they lost someone when they saw the gifts their loved one gave them in their homes.

Woman: At first, it only feels like something is vaguely off, but in time, you start to remember them more clearly...Especially if they left behind any letters, which some did.

Peperoncino: Oh my. That's surprisingly careless of him, leaving behind so many physical records like that. Although...

Peperoncino: (...Maybe Koyanskaya is the one behind sadistically cruel touches like that. I certainly wouldn't put it past her. )

Ganesha: Man...only being able to half-remember someone you cared about sounds rough.

Ganesha: That is...way worse than Asha just forgetting about her dog.

Woman: Yes. It's painful, not being able to remember someone who once meant so much to you...unbearably so.

Woman: That's why I decided to fight back. I think everyone else in our village more or less feels the same.

Woman: Lady Lakshmi is the one who taught us how to fight. Any friends of hers are friends of ours.

Woman: Please, come inside. We don't have much, but you're welcome to–

Holmes: I appreciate the kind offer, but it's better if we stay out of your village for now.

Rama: Indeed...Oh, don't misunderstand. We're very happy to accept your invitation.

Rama: But we can't very well bring along another guest who was definitely not invited!

Nezha: Update: Targets spotted.

Fujimaru 1: ...Nezha!

Nezha: Warning: Do not call me that.

Nezha: You may know another Nezha, but I am not her.

Da Vinci: Yeah...She's right. That isn't the Nezha you know, or the one we came here with.

Da Vinci: She's still Crown Prince Nezha, Marshal of the Central Altar...but this one serves Arjuna as one of his Lōkapāla!

Lakshmi: So that is one of the false god's servants.

Lakshmi: The rumors I've heard say they like to brag about how he's shared his divine power with them...

Nezha: Affirmation: Yes, he has given each of us one of his many Divinities. If he is a false god, then so are we.

Nezha: Conclusion: That is all I need to know. If you would refuse to obey his laws, then I cannot stand idly by.

Nezha: Assertion: Divine punishment is required here!

Fujimaru 1: I guess we can't talk this out then...!

Goredolf: All right, Peperoncino, this is your time to shine! You said she ran off to pursue you back at the mountain where we found Ganesha, yes!?

Goredolf: Then your job is to draw her attention away from us once more!

Peperoncino: I'm preeetty sure that's not gonna work now. Last time she didn't see you guys as a threat! I don't think that's the case anymore!

Nezha: Affirmation: That man is no longer my sole target.

Nezha: You are now all equally high priority targets. I will not let any of you escape.

Peperoncino: See?

Mash: But why?

Mash: Even if you are a different aspect of her that was summoned, or were embedded with a're still Nezha, aren't you?

Mash: And the Nezha we knew always had a strong sense of justice.

Mash: In this world...the only measure of something's value is whether god deems it worthy or not.

Mash: He's the sole arbiter of what should and should not be.

Mash: I think that's inherently unjust...It disparages the value in feelings, memories, life, and death alike.

Mash: So then...How can you...!?

Peperoncino: (Oh my...That was certainly heartfelt. She really has learned how to express her anger. )

Peperoncino: (You are a product of mankind's arrogance and rationalism, so while I'm glad to see such emotion from you, it makes me a bit nervous. )

Peperoncino: (Your innocence was your greatest source of strength. Once that's gone...what will you have gained instead? )

Mash: Nezha, please tell me something. What do you think of this world?

Nezha: ...

Nezha: Answer unnecessary. Commencing attack!

Fujimaru 1: We're not going to go down without a fight!

Fujimaru 2: Get ready to fight back!

Rama: You've got it, Master!

Lakshmi: I can't let you return to your false god now that you know about our village. Prepare to die.

Ganesha: You do realize saying stuff like that totally makes you sound evil, right?

Ganesha: Anyway, Nezha's a figure in Journey to the West and The Investiture of the Gods, right? I think some people also call her “Nazha”?

Ganesha: Oh man, I can't believe I'm up against someone so famous...Th-then again, I guess Ganesha's right up there too, huh.

Ganesha: All right, fine...I'll just put in a picoeffort, like usual!

Fujimaru 1: Picoeffort?

Ganesha: It's a word I came up with! It means my unusual willingness to try, my usual hopelessness, my wish to avoid responsibility...

Ganesha: It's basically all sorts of feelings rolled up into one big old mess, okay!? Get with it!


Goredolf: How can she have so many Noble Phantasms!? What's going on here!?

Da Vinci: I don't think those are Noble Phantasms. They're probably Baobei depicted in The Investiture of the Gods. So I can understand why she has them...

Da Vinci: ...but the Nezha we know has never exhibited this kind of fighting ability. There's something else going on here.

Holmes: She did say that Arjuna shared one of his Divinities with her. I suspect the key lies there.

Holmes: This is no natural Divine Spirit amalgamation, like we've seen with Sitonai. This is a case of divine elements simply being fused into an existing being.

Holmes: As difficult as it may be to believe...

Holmes: ...if one of Arjuna's Divinities is truly able to coexist with a Servant's Spirit Origin...

Holmes: ...that would indeed explain this remarkable increase in her power and abilities.

Peperoncino: Assuming he gave her one of the Lōkapāla regents tasked with defending different directions, I'd say Kubēra's probably at the top of the list of possibilities.

Peperoncino: Kubēra's the god of wealth and treasure, so that would explain why she has such an abundance of power now.

Fujimaru 1: Kubēra...

Fujimaru 2: I've never heard that name before...

Peperoncino: Not well known in your neck of the woods, huh? Trust me, he's a very important god in India.

Peperoncino: There are all sorts of stories about him, but they all agree that he was the guardian of the north.

Peperoncino: He was also known as Dānapati, the Lord of Wealth,and as Vaisravana, son of Vishrava...

Peperoncino: Though in Japan, he might be better known as Tamonten or Bishamonten.

Rama: Kubēra...I think he was Ravana's half brother. As I recall, he battled Ravana, only to lose both the fight and control over the island of Lanka.

Rama: And in that case, he has some connection to me as well...or rather, to Sita.

Peperoncino: Also...Ohh, maybe that's why he's such a good match for Nezh–

Nezha: Request: Shut up! There is no need to explain. We are here to fight.

Nezha: ...Still, I will tell you one thing. The Divinity of the god of wealth does reside within me.

Nezha: Declaration: Therefore...therefore this can only end in defeat!

Ganesha: Oh cripes, another OP item!? No fair! She's decked out in legendary gear, and I'm still in my starting equipment!

Peperoncino: (...Gods have immense power far beyond ordinary beings. That's what makes them gods. )

Peperoncino: (If this Nezha really has been given a Divinity, it would definitely explain how she got so absurdly strong...)

Peperoncino: (...but it's so sad, I can barely stand to watch...)


Mash: You've noticed too, haven't you, Master? That fight was clearly...

Fujimaru 1: Nezha...Why...?

Nezha: ...

Lakshmi: That was an incredible display of wealth and fortune. It almost makes me envy you. But...

Peperoncino: You took it too far. Even with all your abundance, you were spending it faster than you could replenish it.

Ganesha: You know, I thought the way you were burning through your items seemed familiar...You were doing it on purpose.

Rama: You went out of your way to use more of your power than necessary. You made sure to use so much that not even the god of wealth could recover from the loss.

Rama: Why?

Nezha: Kubēra is the god linked to my father.

Mash: Huh?

Peperoncino: In China, Crown Prince Nezha's father is known as Tuō Tǎ Lǐ Tiān Wáng, aka Pagoda-Bearing Heavenly King Li, aka Li Jing.

Peperoncino: And in Japan, Li Jing is considered to be the same as the figures I mentioned before, Tamonten and Bishamonten.

Peperoncino: There's a lot of cross-pollination between Taoist lore and Buddhist myth when it comes to gods like these, so it can be difficult to make sense of...

Peperoncino: But the long and short of it is, we can be pretty sure that Li Jing and the Hindu god Kubēra are one and the same.

Nezha: And I, of course, have a connection to my father.

Nezha: Confusion: There is something inside the jewel I hold in my chest. I do not know what to call these feelings I hold towards my father.

Fujimaru 1: What does all that mean...?

Da Vinci: The details are a little different between Journey to the West and The Investiture of the Gods...

Da Vinci: ...but basically, Nezha was born with tremendous power, and wrecked a lot of things even as a baby.

Da Vinci: Her father acted in anger and fear,and Nezha lost her body as a result.

Da Vinci: She was later reborn into a new being thanks to the Buddha and Taiyi Zhenren.

Da Vinci: Well, the real story might be more complicated than that, but that's an accurate picture of the central relationships.

Da Vinci: Plus, they say Nezha's father is still afraid of her power, so...

Nezha: I am Crown Prince Nezha, Marshal of the Central Altar. I am not Li Jing.

Nezha: It is therefore impossible for me to tell what I think and feel now that both beings have been combined within me.

Nezha: But, I can be certain about this:

Nezha: It is not right for Li Jing to exist inside Nezha. It is utterly preposterous!

Nezha: Truth: Such a being can never be me! Truth: That is not how I am meant to function!

Rama: That's why you burned yourself out! You couldn't accept what you've become!

Ganesha: But why take such a...well, roundabout approach to suicide?

Lakshmi: Good point. If you wished to end your life, you could have done so any other number of ways. For example...

Lakshmi: could have fought back against the god who made you that way with all of your might. Since he trusted you enough to bestow you with power, you should have had plenty of chances to attack him if you chose.

Nezha: I considered that, of course, but deemed it impossible. His divine power is just too great...

Nezha: And if I lost, he might decide to erase my consciousness for being defective.

Nezha: Then I would truly become nothing more than a puppet with Nezha's body and Kubēra's power.

Nezha: Conclusion: That would be a fate worse than death!

Da Vinci: Hmm. If you ended up as a Berserker thanks to that violent side of you being the most prevalent in your manifestation...

Da Vinci: ...that would probably also mean that your feelings about your father are stronger and fresher than the usual Nezha.

Da Vinci: Which would explain why you just didn't want to deal with it...

Nezha: Yes. I tried not to think about it at first. I buried my feelings deep down and did my best to forget them.

Nezha: But then...I saw her.

Mash: ...Our Nezha.

Nezha: The moment I saw felt like I had been cursed.

Nezha: I was overcome with rage, and hatred, and envy...So much so that I couldn't stop myself from destroying her.

Nezha: I could not stand the idea of another me...a truer me, being out there.

Nezha: I could not accept it. But, destroying her did nothing to lift my curse.

Nezha: I could no longer ignore my incompleteness. I could no longer stand how ugly I was.

Nezha: That's why I did this...

Nezha: Elaboration: It was not you who destroyed me.

Nezha: I destroyed me.

Mash: I can't say I approve of what you did...but I can understand it.

Nezha: ...That is fine.

Nezha: If nothing else, I was able to avoid the worst possible outcome. For that, I thank you.

Nezha: ...But...I will not apologize. The one to whom I should apologize is no longer here.

Nezha: Defects should just disappear. For the first time, I understand that logic.

Nezha: The defective Nezha mixed with her father will disappear. That is how it should be. Salvation: I will not return in the next yuga.

Woman: You...You're a servant of that god! You have no right to say that!

Woman: My lover is gone now. How dare you say they were defective? How dare you say they deserved to disappear!?

Nezha: Apology: I have no way of knowing that. All I am saying is...

Nezha: ...for those of us ashamed of our defectiveness, getting to disappear can be a kind of salvation.

Da Vinci: Hang on! If you're really grateful to us,then give us some info before you disappear!

Da Vinci: It can be about anything! Arjuna, the other Lōkapāla...Oh, we want to know about God's Skyboulder too!

Nezha: That giant cube? Truth: Unknown.

Nezha: I know nothing about it either. Nor do I know who might know something.

Da Vinci: Damn. I was afraid you'd say something like that.

Nezha: The Lōkapāla are Servants that he has bestowed with Divinities. If you defeat them, those Divinities should disperse, like mine is.

Da Vinci: So we can whittle down their forces by taking them out, huh? That's definitely good to know.

Da Vinci: Whenever we inevitably face off with Arjuna, not having to also fight three Servants with godly power at the same time will be a huge help.

Mash: Can you tell us anything about the other Lōkapāla?

Nezha: Answer: Aśvatthāman is a special case. He goes around on his own, fighting battles in place of Arjuna.

Nezha: The others watch over different regions. They sometimes assemble under Arjuna's orders, but in general, they keep to their assigned area.

Nezha: There are only three Lōkapāla, so each one covers a wide swath of land. I do not know what happened to the gods who were originally meant to guard the different directions.

Peperoncino: There are supposed to be eight Lōkapāla, one for each cardinal direction. I wonder if their Divinities are still inside Arjuna because he doesn't need them...

Peperoncino: What do all of you Lōkapāla do, exactly? And which directions do you oversee?

Nezha: Answer: We watch over people, guard against revolt,and take care of the sacred beasts.

Nezha: My territory stretches over everything from the north to the southeast.

Nezha: The old man handles everything from the north to the southwest...

Nezha: ...and the young man handles everything from the southeast to the southwest.

Nezha: The old man is William Tell, an Archer,and the young man is Asclepius, a Caster.


Fujimaru 1: William Tell...!

Da Vinci: Sweet! We got his True Name!

Da Vinci: Times may have changed, but he's still one of the most famous Archers in history. Maybe we should look for a few apples he can shoot off your head?

Holmes: As a rule, Servants are usually summoned in their prime.

Holmes: So his middle-aged appearance must be because that time in his life is when his skills were at their peak.

Mash: And then there's Asclepius...That must be the Servant in the hood.

Da Vinci: He was one of the Greek heroes who sailed on the Argo. He's known as the father of medicine, and he's still worshipped in some circles today.

Fujimaru 2: Asclepius...!

Da Vinci: Sweet! We got his True Name!

Da Vinci: Asclepius is a hero known for being one of the Argonauts, and for founding medicine as we know it today.

Da Vinci: It's too bad Atalante's not here;she might have been able to tell us more about him.

Holmes: And then there's William of the most famous hunters in the world. So that's who the elderly man is.

Holmes: As a rule, Servants are usually summoned in their prime.

Holmes: So his middle-aged appearance must be because that time in his life is when his skills were at their peak.

Da Vinci: Interestingly, neither of these Heroic Spirits have any connection to India whatsoever.

Da Vinci: But now, they've been given the Divinity and power of Indian gods...I wonder what effect that's had on their abilities.

Nezha: Answer: Unknown. I never paid much attention to their abilities. I did not need to.

Nezha: Oh...Report: I have reached my limit.

Nezha: Outsider...No, Master of Chaldea.

Nezha: Maybe we will meet again someday.

Nezha: And if we do...

Nezha: ...let it not be this defective version of me. I hope it will be that other, pure me...

Rama: Just because a Servant is given divine power, that doesn't necessarily mean they will see it as a good thing.

Rama: If anything, it was that power that made her see herself as defective...

Mash: ...Yes. Even Servants are no exception.

Mash: Knowing what you need, what you don't,what to keep, what to discard...

Mash: I think everyone has to decide those things for themselves, because no two people are exactly alike.

Mash: It's no one else's place to unilaterally choose them for you. Not even a god...

Woman: ...

Lakshmi: You had every right to say what you did to that Lōkapāla.

Lakshmi: I can more than understand your anger at someone desiring to cut themselves off from this world after they've been going around doing the same to others.

Lakshmi: All I'm saying is that the ones serving the god have their reasons as well.

Lakshmi: As that girl there just said, it's not right for a single entity, even a god, to make decisions for the entire world.

Woman: Yes...You're right. Besides, the important thing is that you and your comrades succeeded at defeating one of the Lōkapāla.

Woman: This is cause for celebration. I'll go tell the others!

Goredolf: Wahahaha! Not only did you defeat one of the Lōkapāla, you even learned the True Names of the other two Servants!

Goredolf: This is a most welcome turn of events,Fujimaru! It feels like...Like...

Goredolf: Like the car infuriatingly blocking our way moved aside, and we finally got to floor it and leave them in the dust!

Goredolf: Now we just have to keep up our momentum all the way to the finish line!

Ganesha: Uh, you're not really much good at gauging the mood, are you? We're not exactly celebrating here...

Ganesha: No, wait. My god power's telling me what's really going on here.

Ganesha: You did gauge the mood here, and just ignored it...NEETs like me aren't too good at that sort of social stuff.

Ganesha: Though I guess you could also call it a pretty minor skill.

Goredolf: Would you mind not psychoanalyzing me right where I can hear you!? Especially when you're going to be so spot-on!

Goredolf: As the Commander, I merely offered my assessment of the present situation...

Rama: A Servant doesn't get to choose who summons them. While this was very unfortunate for Nezha, it worked out for us.

Rama: If she hadn't purposely worn herself down, I don't think we could have avoided taking some heavy losses.

Mash: I agree. It doesn't feel like we won so much as she let us win.

Peperoncino: Nezha was a special case, since she just happened to have a special connection to the Indian Divinity she was given.

Peperoncino: I don't think we can count on anything similar happening with the Lōkapāla who don't have any ties to India.

Mash: ...

Rama: Agreed. Aśvatthāman was a significant threat,even when we were only trying to get away.

Rama: His regenerative abilities and his immortality were both on a scale I've rarely seen.

Rama: As for the other Servants...

Rama: ...we should assume they're at least as powerful as Nezha would have been if she'd made better use of Kubēra's power, if not more so.

Fujimaru 1: Yeah. The next one we face might not be this easy.

Rama: Exactly, Master. I'll make sure to remain on my guard!

Fujimaru 2: Ah, we'll figure something out!

Ganesha: That's it!? I can't tell if you're deliberately trying to stay positive, or just a hopeless optimist.

Lakshmi: Still, if nothing else, at least we've made a bit of progress.

Lakshmi: Eliminating one of the Divinities under Arjuna's control is a victory no matter how you look at it.

Lakshmi: Though of course, it's still too early to say how much value or significance this victory portends...

Rama: Actually, now that you mention it...I think I do feel a little lighter.

Rama: That indescribable pressure we've felt hindering us in this world...

Rama: That strange feeling that something is off, that's been preventing us from finding our footing...

Rama: It feels like it's not quite as bad now.

Holmes: Hmm. It seems safe to assume that eliminating one of the Lōkapāla has improved the state of the world somehow.

Holmes: Needless to say, if we're going to defeat Arjuna, we'll need to reduce his overwhelming power and find a way to draw out more of our own.

Holmes: If eliminating Lōkapāla can achieve both at once,that would truly be killing two birds with one stone.

Da Vinci: Forget birds or stones. At this point, that looks to be our only possible path to victory, period.

Da Vinci: So I guess we'll just have to make our way down it a little bit at a time. Journey of a thousand miles and all that.

Da Vinci: In other words, our next course of action is to try and take out all the other Lōkapāla.

Da Vinci: And luckily, we now know where we can probably find them.

Da Vinci: Sure, they may just be very general directions, but it's still better than having no lead at all. Plus, I bet the towns and villages in those areas will know something.

Fujimaru 1: No objections here.

Fujimaru 2: Sounds good to me.

Holmes: According to Nezha, Aśvatthāman moves around freely on his own, so going after him won't be an option.

Holmes: So the question is, who do we pursue first? William Tell, or Asclepius?

Goredolf: Hmph, that's a no-brainer. The Archer is clearly the higher priority target.

Da Vinci: Oh? Why's that?

Goredolf: Isn't it obvious? We can't have him sniping Fujimaru, now can we!?

Goredolf: [♂ He's /♀ She's] the cornerstone of our whole operation here, after all.

Goredolf: I may be personally blessed by the goddess of fortune,but Fujimaru there is the one holding the key to our victory.

Goredolf: Therefore, we should take out the Archer first,to eliminate the risk of Fujimaru being taken out at a distance and ensure [♂ his /♀ her] safety.

Holmes: I understand how you feel, but I'm not certain the choice is so clear-cut.

Holmes: We shouldn't let our king rush headlong into danger just because we're wary of their rook.

Goredolf: Nnn...Nnnnnn...No, no, I understand. It's a question of who has the greater advantage.

Goredolf: The fact is, we currently have no Servants who excel at mid to long-range combat.

Goredolf: Every member in our current lineup is a close to midrange fighter.

Goredolf: If we were to go after the Archer first, we could end up struggling to pin him down, only to have him really throw a wrench in the works by calling in reinforcements.

Holmes: Agreed, that is a distinct possibility.

Goredolf: Casters, on the other hand, tend to be excellent mages,but they're certainly not known for their prowess in battle.

Goredolf: Being an excellent mage doesn't automatically make you an excellent warrior, after all.

Goredolf: No, most Casters fight by laying cunning traps and collecting information outside of battle to stack the deck in their favor.

Goredolf: So in a head-to-head brawl, they're likely to fall one step behind compared to an Archer. If we can drag them into such a brawl, we should have a good chance of defeating them.

Goredolf: Essentially, our goal would be to reduce the enemy's forces by going after the weaker opponent first.

Holmes: That would leave the Archer's threat looming over us, but that has been no less true all this time.

Holmes: I believe we can minimize the risks by taking measures against any attempts at sniping and eliminating the Caster as quickly as possible.

Goredolf: Then it's settled. We'll go after the Caster first.

Ganesha: I can't believe it.

Goredolf: Wh-what can't you believe? As a fellow chubster, I demand an explanation!

Ganesha: Hey! I'll have you know that I only have all this extra weight out of respect for Ganesha!

Ganesha: Anyway, I was just surprised that you were acting like a decent commander for once!

Ganesha: You really do know the differences between Servant classes, don't you, Gotchy?

Goredolf: (Gotchy...? Does that mean she thinks I'm like Karl Gotch, the undisputed god of pro wrestling...? )

Goredolf: Heh. That's a rather elegant nickname you've come up with there, young lady. That, I appreciate.

Goredolf: But to be clear, I've been studying this sort of thing ever since I knew was going to be the next director of Chaldea.

Goredolf: After all, it would be quite the farce if Chaldea's top brass didn't know the first thing about its crucial Heroic Spirit summoning system.

Goredolf: Isn't that right, Kyrielight?

Mash: Yes, Director. I know you've been studying diligently every day since we left Russia.

Goredolf: What!? No, no, I've known these things all along! I'm nothing if not a capable commander, after all!

Goredolf: Er, regardless, I now easily know just as much as a newly minted Master.

Goredolf: Furthermore, I've also taken another look at Fujimaru's reports.

Goredolf: By this point, I can quickly calculate each class's traits, the cost of summoning a given Servant, and the amount of strain placed on the nervous system by the Mystic Code...

Goredolf: ...with just one hand and a common pocket calculator.

Goredolf: Incidentally, Fujimaru, you'll be getting hungry in about three hours, so make sure you have some rations ready to go.

Mash: (He's even calculated the rate Master burns calories...! )

Peperoncino: Yes, yes, very impressive. Now, can we get back on track?

Peperoncino: So, we'll be going after Asclepius first. Nezha said he's in charge of the south, but how do we go about finding him?

Lakshmi: I am told there's a town in the south. If his job includes keeping an eye on the people in his region, there's a strong chance he'll show up there.

Da Vinci: In that case, we should be able to ask someone in this village where to find it. Okay, sounds like a plan to me.

Goredolf: Good! All right, Fujimaru, your next mission is to head south, find the Caster Asclepius, and defeat him!

Da Vinci: Oh, and don't worry.

Da Vinci: Yours truly, the beautiful Ms. Da Vinci, will be holding an extensive lecture on Greek heroes to give you something to listen to on the way!

Section 11: Treta Yuga/Asclepius, the God of Medicine

God Arjuna: ...

Limbo: Oh? My, my...It would seem Kubēra has vanished.

Tell: Well damn, now I feel bad for pawning my job off on her.

Asclepius: Don't be stupid. She ran off on her own. You didn't ask her to go.

Asclepius: Also, if you're going to bother saying that sort of thing, then you could at least pretend you mean it. You don't look the least bit sorry.

Tell: Yeah? Dunno what to tell you then. I'm really broken up over here.

Limbo: Mmm...This won't do. This won't do at all.

Limbo: I could tell Crown Prince Nezha was up to something...but she was still one of the hands of god.

Limbo: The fact that she's gone now is–

God Arjuna: There

God Arjuna: The gods' infinite. Even is shattered...I remain...limitless...

Limbo: Indeed, indeed. Of that, I have no doubt whatsoever. But you must agree that it is...inconvenient to have one fewer pawn to serve you, yes?

Limbo: Is that not why you summoned the other Servants after Aśvatthāman? To have them execute your will?

Limbo: What do you say? If you like, I would be happy to provide you with another summoning spell.

God Arjuna: No. Even of no consequence. All I need to keep...repeating the yugas.

God Arjuna: Thanks to...the all brought me...

God Arjuna: I have to speed up...the sluggish yuga cycle...

God Arjuna: So I will...continue on. I will keep drowning...the world's defects...its evils...and cutting them away...

God Arjuna: The demise of the Great Yuga...the cycle formed by the other yugas...that only a god can approaching...

Tell: The Great Yuga, huh. You said this ten-day yuga cycle you're repeating is itself just a part of this Great Yuga, right?

Limbo: Indeed, now is the time for this universe to end! The whole world has lapsed into degeneracy! The Great Kali Yuga and its massive destruction is at hand!

Limbo: O god, you should be proud. The seeds of morality you have tended for an eternity are at last about to bear fruit.

Limbo: Ordinarily, it would take hundreds, no, thousands of years, but that would be far too long a wait!

Limbo: Thanks to you dramatically shortening the small yuga cycle to ten days, the Great Yuga cycle has been sped up as well! Mmm, how wonderful...

God Arjuna: And then...all that will that which is...truly good...truly necessary...

God Arjuna: Then...I will be create a perfect...ideal world...

Limbo: Indeed! Indeed, indeed! What a lovely world that would be! If that really does happen, why...that would be just lovely!

Limbo: Soon...Very soon now, I think...

Limbo: will remake the world over the course of enough small yugas for us to get there.

Limbo: I wonder how many more yugas it will take? One? Two? Few enough that we can count them with our hands!? Hehe, hehehe, I can't wait to find out!

Asclepius: Tch. Hey, Alter Ego. Enough with the digressions.

Asclepius: Basically, the boss is telling us not to worry about Nezha's death, right? Fine, got it.

Asclepius: Now, can I get back to my research? I've got a lot on my plate, you know.

Asclepius: I swear, there's nothing worse than all the time people waste on pointless chatter.

Asclepius: Especially when they're your patient, and you've got to listen to them blabbing away about their inane personal lives.

Asclepius: It would be one thing if they at least had some interesting rare disease...

Asclepius: ...but it's almost always just another boring cold or broken bone or something.

God Arjuna: ...Wait.

Asclepius: All right, if you want me to wait, I'll wait. What is it?

God Arjuna: There's something...I should...tell all of you...

Limbo: (Oh? My, my, how unusual. Yes, it's not every day we see a glimpse of his humanity...)

Fou: Fou fou?

Rama: Hmm. I don't see as much water or flowers as I did yesterday.

Rama: This looks like the harvest season. I guess that's dependent on the current yuga too.

Mash: As I recall, today is the beginning of the Tretā Yuga.

Da Vinci: That's the time when things start to deteriorate a bit from how they were during Kṛta Yuga, and one fourth of the world's rightful order is lost.

Da Vinci: It's quite the radical difference for us to just see things change so instantaneously, but that's just the way this world works.

Da Vinci: For the people who live in this world,this is all perfectly normal.

Holmes: Nonetheless, I cannot help but feel that this state of affairs is far too sudden and unnatural.

Holmes: If the yuga cycle has been shortened to a mere ten days, something is certainly amiss.

Holmes: At this point, I would not be the least bit surprised to learn there was some sort of distortion here affecting the entire world.

Peperoncino: ...

Da Vinci: All right, now that we've all adjusted to our new surroundings, it's time for the lecture I promised. You keep walking, I'll keep talking.

Da Vinci: Asclepius is a hero from Greek mythology. His father was the Olympian god Apollo, and his mother was a woman named Coronis, making him a demigod.

Da Vinci: Shortly after his birth,he was entrusted to a centaur sage...

Da Vinci: That's right. Our very own Chiron.

Da Vinci: Asclepius first studied medicine under him, but his talent for medicine surpassed his teacher's eventually.

Da Vinci: In addition to the sun, Apollo was also the god of sickness and healing, so that's probably where Asclepius got his talent for medicine.

Da Vinci: To elaborate, he took the knowledge of herbology Chiron imparted to him and expanded on it...

Da Vinci: ...which led to the concept of medicine as we know it today spreading far and wide.

Da Vinci: Up to that point, healing had strictly been the domain of the gods, which is probably why he came to be known as the father of medicine, and a god in his own right.

Da Vinci: At the time, the concept of a doctor–someone with both the knowledge and skills to treat injuries and disease in someone other than themself...

Da Vinci: ...and a patient–the beneficiary of the doctor's knowledge and skill–was a huge paradigm shift...and Asclepius is the one who made it happen.

Ganesha: Wow, when you put it like that,he sounds like a really big deal.

Ganesha: Though of course, I'm sure Ganesha's way more famous than him, being an actual god and all!

Da Vinci: As I mentioned earlier, he was one of the Argonauts,owing entirely to his skill as a doctor.

Da Vinci: He probably got to know Atalante, Heracles,and Medea during the voyage on the Argo too.

Da Vinci: It's too bad none of them are here now. They might've been able to tell us more about him.

Lakshmi: I'm sorry, but I have no interest in his life story. All I need to know is how to defeat him.

Da Vinci: Oh, there are plenty of other interesting stories to share about him. Like the one about how his staff became entwined with snakes and came to be symbolic of medicine everywhere...

Da Vinci: But it looks like that one will have to wait.

Da Vinci: The beautiful Ms. Da Vinci is taking a short sabbatical.

Mash: Why's that?

Meunière: I'm picking up a huge wildlife reading! It looks like some kind of hydra!

Da Vinci: Hmm, is this because I mentioned snakes? Maybe words have more power than we give them credit for.

Holmes: While there are many Indian legends involving serpents, such as naga and Vritra, this would seem to be no more than an ordinary creature.

Holmes: One that is apparently set on having[♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru for its supper.

Fujimaru 1: Hard pass!

Fujimaru 2: Talk about the struggle for existence...!

Lakshmi: There is no need to bother Indra about this. The fewer dangerous animals there are, the safer it is for everyone.

Ganesha: I don't wanna be eaten either...

Ganesha: You guys have seen how a snake's stomach bulges out after it swallows its prey whole, right?

Ganesha: I'm warning you now, hydra; the same thing's gonna happen to you if you eat me.

Ganesha: Oh, by the way, I'm a vegetarian now, so if you wanna make me an offering, some potato (chips) would hit the spot!


Fujimaru 1: Nom nom nom!

Fou: Fou fou fou!

Fujimaru 2: It's so good...!

Peperoncino: Right? Right!? I make the best roasted bananas you'll ever have!

Peperoncino: Go on, Mashie, try one! They're great for your skin and for staying in shape.

Peperoncino: You're still a growing girl, so you've got to eat up! Of course, I'll be digging right in with you!

Mash: I-I'm eating one right now...It IS really good!

Fou: Fou...Fo fo!? Fooou...

Ganesha: Of course it's too hot for you, Fou. Cats have very heat-sensitive tongues, and you're practically one of them. You'll just have to make do with a regular un-roasted banana.

Lakshmi: I haven't camped out since the rebellion. This really brings back memories.

Rama: By definition, a rebellion involves fighting a ruler much stronger than you. Surely it can't all be nostalgic.

Lakshmi: Of course not. I remember very well how we never had enough supplies to go around.

Lakshmi: The sepoy incited uprisings left and right before they ran off to Delhi, leaving us Jhansi to clean up the mess.

Lakshmi: Thanks to that, we had almost nothing in the way of people, funding, or supplies. Sometimes, my comrades and I had nothing to eat but a single half-rotten banana between us all...

Da Vinci: ...Hey, I know it's none of my business, but are you sure you don't want to join the conversation?

Captain: Heh...You are quite intelligent, aren't you? Then you do know who I am.

Da Vinci: Well, if you are who I think you are, I just remembered that there were rumors of you helping the sepoys in their rebellion.

Da Vinci: Of course, that is just how the story goes,so I have no idea if it's true.

Captain: ...Who can say? The truth is, I'm really not anyone right now.

Captain: All I can say is, if Sion hadn't summoned me,I wouldn't be who I currently am.

Da Vinci: Huh? Then, does that mean–

Captain: At any rate, we should be using this time to let Fujimaru and [♂ his /♀ her] team rest, right?

Captain: I don't see any need to jump in with my own old, unasked for stories.

Captain: I'm going to take another look at the engine. If you don't see me again tonight, it's because I'm busy there.

Da Vinci: ...Got it.

Rama: Hehe, it seems you're no ordinary queen either. Though I could already tell as much from the way you fight.

Lakshmi: Are you saying a queen who would sleep on the ground is no true queen?

Rama: Not at all. Sita is said to have been born in the ridge between two rice fields. If anything, I'm fond of women who have an earthy scent.

Lakshmi: ...

Peperoncino: My, oh my! I guess the really famous heroes are natural Casanovas! I'll have to make sure I remember this!

Rama: Huh? Why would you do that? Wait...You're not planning on telling Sita about this if we find her, are you!?

Rama: You've got it all wrong! I wasn't making a pass at her!

Peperoncino: I know that, silly. Of course I won't tell Sita about this.


Don't lie to me! It's written all over your face!

Mash: ...

Fujimaru 1: It's pretty relaxing here, isn't it, Mash?

Fujimaru 2: These roasted bananas are really good, aren't they, Mash?

Mash: ...Yes. Definitely.

Mash: Can I tell you something, Senpai? For some reason I can't really explain...I feel like everything's going to work out.

Fou: Fooou?

Mash: I know God Arjuna is incredibly powerful. I know this world runs on a truly bizarre system.

Mash: ...And I know that Nezha and Karna aren't here to help us anymore...

Mash: We've seen some very...very painful things...

Mash: To be honest, it was all bringing me down a little.

Fujimaru 1: ...Me too.

Mash: But now, having all of us gathered around a campfire like this makes me feel more...optimistic?

Mash: Pepe was always so nice to me,even back when I didn't know anything at all.

Mash: I knew he was a very social person...

Mash: it was difficult for me to accept that he had become our enemy.

Mash: But now, we're sitting around the same campfire,united in a common goal.

Mash: It's all so...I don't know if this is the best way to say it, but it makes me really happy...

Mash: And you know, I'm actually kind of hopeful right now.

Mash: Maybe, just maybe, Asclepius...the Caster we're about to face will have his own feelings about this world, just like Nezha did.

Mash: So if we talk to him, maybe there's a chance he'll be willing to help us ou–

Peperoncino: Oooh, you've grown up to be such a good girl, Mashie! I'm so glad to hear you think that!

Mash: Ah! Pepe...

Peperoncino: Of course, I'm not too hopeful about my own prospects,so I can't share your optimism...

Peperoncino: But in that sense, we each have to place our own bets. So it's nothing you need to worry about.

Peperoncino: You're right, it's definitely not impossible. It might well be worth our while to try talking to him and William, even if they are Lōkapāla.

Peperoncino: But...I don't think we should waste our breath on Aśvatthāman.

Mash: ...What makes you say that?

Peperoncino: You saw what he's like when we fought him before. You know how fiercely determined he is.

Peperoncino: You can't give anything that much effort unless you really, truly believe in what you're doing.

Fujimaru 1: It didn't matter how many times we defeated him...

Fujimaru 2: He just wouldn't stay down, no matter what...

Peperoncino: Right. However much you hurt him, he'll just bounce right back, even if the wound is fatal.

Peperoncino: He was nowhere near so durable when he was with me, so it must be something with the Divinity Arjuna gave him...

Peperoncino: But at any rate, he didn't even think to pretend he was out of commission so he could take it easy until his wounds finished healing, right? He's as hardcore as they come.

Peperoncino: So I don't think we should get our hopes up about him secretly hating this world and being willing to betray it.

Peperoncino: If anything, he seemed to me like he cared more about serving Arjuna than anything else.

Peperoncino: Not because Arjuna's his Master now. I got the impression that he's a true believer in what Arjuna's doing.

Peperoncino: He and Arjuna might have been enemies back when they were human, but I'm pretty sure Arjuna is way beyond thinking about the Kauravas and the Pandavas at this point.

Peperoncino: I always meant to try and get to know Aśvatthāman better, but I was so busy back when this Lostbelt was first made that I kept putting it off.

Peperoncino: Now I really wish I'd made the time for him. Maybe then, I'd at least have an idea of what he's thinking now.

Fou: Fou, fou fooou!

Peperoncino: Oh my, are you trying to slap some sense into me, little animal?

Peperoncino: Trying to tell me I shouldn't have let my contract with my Servant be taken away?

Peperoncino: Yes, you're right. I'm his former Master, so I feel responsible too.

Peperoncino: Even then, he always seemed like he was angry about something, so we couldn't have been less alike.

Peperoncino: But I didn't mind that. I figured that way, I could let him handle everything that wasn't in my wheelhouse.

Peperoncino: Not to mention he was always an incredible fighter.

Ganesha: Angry, huh? That's true, he was always super pissed off.

Ganesha: Is there, like, a reason for that,or is it just how he is?

Peperoncino: I'm not sure. All I know is, he was like that right from the time I summoned him.

Peperoncino: So who knows? Maybe that IS just how he is.

Peperoncino: There is one story that says he attacked an enemy army in the dead of night out of anger over his father's murder.

Peperoncino: Even though that sort of thing was absolutely against the rules of warfare at the time.

Peperoncino: a Servant,he's always been fueled by rage.

Peperoncino: I'm sure there's more to him than that, but his rage burned so hot it seemed like it subsumed everything else.

Peperoncino: In some could say he was a bit socially awkward.

Peperoncino: But anger's a force to be reckoned with.

Peperoncino: Some people think of anger as giving you blinders and making you unwilling to see reason, but on the other hand, that kind of focus can be very powerful.

Peperoncino: So the idea of going up against someone so relentlessly devoted to his cause, well...

Peperoncino: It scares me.

Peperoncino: Honestly...I don't know what he'd be like now if I was still his Master.

Mash: It sounds like he would have been a very helpful ally.

Peperoncino: Hehe, you think? I have a feeling a lukewarm puddle like me would've only cooled him off, and not in a good way.

Peperoncino: Anyway...I'm sure that wherever he is now,he's mad as hell about something.

Peperoncino: I swear, I don't know how he does it. It takes just oodles of passion to stay angry all the time.

Fujimaru 1: Passion? Really?

Fujimaru 2: I thought he was just, you know...bad-tempered.

Peperoncino: Oh yes, his heart simply burns with passion.

Peperoncino: When you grow up, you'll understand just how hard and how sad it is to be so angry that you burn yourself out.

Peperoncino: That kind of white-hot rage usually just doesn't last. Most of the time, anger quickly gives way to regret and despair.

Peperoncino: I can't even imagine what it would take to be truly angry all the time. Even sincerity only gets you so far.

Peperoncino: I mean, how long do you think a dandelion seed like me that goes wherever the wind takes him would last!? If I my hair ended up burning off in my fury, I wouldn't have anything left!

Ganesha: That sounds like it's taking the Buddhist idea of the world as a burning house of suffering a liiittle literally. And honestly, I can't imagine how a guy named “Peperoncino” isn't already living it up.

Peperoncino: Right? Right!? Peperoncino's a great name,if I do say so myself! And it suits me perfectly!

Peperoncino: After all, I'm a spicy hot pepper from my head to my toes! I make it a point to live nice and carefree wherever I go!

Mash: ...I'm not sure I agree with that, Pepe. You've always seemed very sincere to me.

Mash: You never got angry, no...but you easily made up for it with how hard you were on yourself.

Mash:'s said that Masters summon Servants who are a lot like themselves.

Mash: You may be very open-minded, but underneath that...

Mash: ...I think you have a very strong sense of responsibility, and a powerful conviction to not lead an easy life.

Peperoncino: Oh my, that's very kind of you. But you're giving me way too much credit.

Peperoncino: I know you wish you could get along with us–with the Crypters, I mean, since you also used to be part of Team A.

Peperoncino: But you've really gotta give that up, girl. If you don't, you'll just make trouble for yourself, your Master, and us.

Peperoncino: We were all loners well before we were Crypters. That didn't change just because we joined a group.

Peperoncino: Some of us have our own ideals. Some of us have faced major oppression. Some of us are natural rebels. Some of us were born in the wrong place. Some of us have lost our humanity entirely.

Peperoncino: We've all got our own issues, and they don't go away just by being part of a team.

Peperoncino: There was not a good person among us. Not any of them, and not me either.

Peperoncino: I mean, we sold out all of mankind and joined forces with the Foreign God just so we could survive, remember?

Peperoncino: Maybe you have a little survivor's guilt at being the only one left, Mashie, but you don't have to feel bad.

Peperoncino: This was always going to happen to us.

Da Vinci: (Always going to happen...? Where are you getting this from, Peperoncino? )

Peperoncino: Still, I really did enjoy my life in Chaldea, so for me...

Peperoncino: You might even say it gave me a reason to live! Eeeeee☆

Rama: I-I see. I don't quite get what you were talking about, but I can see that you are a man of conviction.

Rama: You have quite the keen eye, don't you? I've noticed it helping us in battle since you joined.

Rama: That keenness doesn't seem entirely physical, either. Is it some sort of magecraft?

Peperoncino: Why yes. It's Divine Power, just like the kind you use, Ramie.

Peperoncino: It's a technique I came up with to let me use the power of the gods in my human body.

Peperoncino: I'm also pretty good at Jinsokutsu, Tashintsu,and Rojintsu, I'll have you know.

Mash: Jinsokutsu, Tashintsu, and Rojintsu...?

Goredolf: Hmm? I could have sworn I've heard those terms somewhere...Do you know anything about them, Administrative Advisor?

Holmes: Those are three of Japan's Shugendou Rokujintsu,or six supernormal Buddhist powers.

Holmes: Jinsokutsu is the power to run faster than any ordinary human. Tashintsu is the power to read other's minds.

Holmes: And Rojintsu is...Hmm. My apologies. I do understand the concept, but I struggle to articulate it and make myself understood...

Holmes: It's...something unique to Buddhism, almost an awareness of one's destiny, not dissimilar to enlightenment...

Peperoncino: My, my, I'm impressed you know that much about Eastern philosophy! You really are a great detective, aren't you?

Peperoncino: I would say Rojintsu is...the power to know one's self well, maybe? That's as good a way to remember it as any, Fujimaru.

Peperoncino: Of course, I doubt you'll have much use for it,being Mash's Master and all.

Peperoncino: I mean, knowing that much about yourself? That's just asking for trouble, right?

Holmes: (...Interesting. Rojintsu is said to be a state of mind that quells all doubts...Yet he thinks of it as asking trouble...)

Fujimaru 1: Um...Why did you call yourself a dandelion seed earlier?

Peperoncino: Oh my, that's what you're concerned about? You're awfully bold for such a cutie.

Peperoncino: It's simple. I ran away from my country when I was about your age.

Peperoncino: Ever since, I've been an international stranger. Chaldea is the first place in my life that I could actually call home.

Fujimaru 1: Why did you run away...?

Peperoncino: Why, because there wasn't anything there for me. I didn't get along with anyone in my family, extended or otherwise.

Peperoncino: (That's putting it mildly, of course, since I hated them so much I killed them all myself. Oh well! Funny old life, isn't it? )

Aśvatthāman: Dammit...

Aśvatthāman: ...Goddammit all!

Narration: Rrgh, this pisses me off. I'm so friggin' pissed right now. I'm so mad I could throw up. I'm so mad it's making me dizzy.

Narration: This goddamn anger never goes away! And it won't as long as I am who I am.

Narration: That's why I want it to hurry up and get here...

Narration: When the Great Yuga ends, the world'll finally stop cycling through destruction and rebirth...

Narration: Every last evil defect will disappear,and the world will finally be perfect.

Narration: It can't get here soon enough...


Holmes: I'm picking up a life-form nearby...a human. There's still some distance to your destination, so they may be a traveler.

Mash: You can never have too much information. Let's go say hello.

Man: Hm? I've never seen any of you before...

Mash: Hi there. Would you mind if we asked you a few questions?

Man: You're headed for the town nearby? Don't bother. If I were you, I'd just turn around and go back where I came from.

Ganesha: Huh? Why's that?

Man: There's a real nasty disease going around in that town.

Man: I was just heading there myself to look for a new job, but once I heard about it, I turned right around.

Man: It had already killed a number of people by the time I heard about it...Might be dead bodies everywhere by now.

Rama: A plague? That's...

Man: All right, I'd better get going. Don't say I didn't warn you.

Man: We've got prayers and the sacred beasts to help us with the kali, but you can't pray away a disease. You only get one life; gotta make the most of it.

Ganesha: Prayers and the sacred beasts, huh...Those don't actually do that much to help.

Lakshmi: Well? What do we do now?

Goredolf: I can't believe I forgot to ask about something so basic. Tell me, Technical Advisor...

Goredolf: Am I right to assume we're all fully inoculated against the various pathogens we expect to encounter in our travels?

Da Vinci: You bet we are! Think about all the places we've already been to. We're covered as far as just about any plague around goes!

Da Vinci: Of course, Fujimaru is already pretty well set thanks to [♂ his /♀ her] innate poison resistance, so the vaccinations are more for peace of mind than anything else.

Da Vinci: But in case you're still concerned, Director...

Da Vinci: ...we could always have the Servants go on ahead and collect more detailed data about this virus before–

Fujimaru 1: No need for that. Let's just keep going.

Fujimaru 2: That's okay. Let's just go. I need to see what's happening for myself.

Lakshmi: Understood. Then we will continue as planned.

Goredolf: Just make sure you don't touch anything strange, all right? And do you have enough masks and gloves? You know you're not supposed to share them, right?

Ganesha: We get it, we get it! Geez, you sound like my mom!

Da Vinci: Just so you know, the Border isn't exactly bursting at the seams with vaccine doses and such...

Da Vinci: be prepared for the possibility that you might not be able to save everyone in this town...

Fujimaru 1: H-huh?

Fou: Fou fooou?

Rama: It's a perfectly ordinary town. It certainly doesn't look like there is a plague going around.

Ganesha: Does this mean that other guy was lying?

Lakshmi: That's not the impression I got from him...Excuse me, do you have a moment?

Man: What do you want?

Lakshmi: We were told there's a deadly plague going around this town. Is that true?

Man: Ahaha, whoever told you that must've been way behind the times! Sure, we did have a scare like that recently.

Man: People were collapsing left and right, some of them died of fever, and the people treating them kept catching it...

Man: We thought that god had forsaken us,and this town was done for.

Man: Hell, I was bedridden with it myself until not too long ago.

Mash: So there was a plague going around here...But now it's all over?

Man: Yup! Just when things were at their worst,a doctor showed up and saved us all.

Man: I don't know what we would've done without him. I had to quarantine myself so my wife and kid wouldn't catch it.

Man: I didn't even know if I'd ever get to see 'em again. Hehe, but now, we're all one big happy family again.

Man: That doctor is our savior, no doubt about it. We offered him a home here and told him he'd never want for anything if he stayed with us...

Man: ...but he just took off. Wouldn't accept anything in return. Picture of modesty, he was.

Man: All he said was, “I just stopped by to check on things. This isn't the fundamental solution this world needs. ”

Man: I wonder what he meant by that. He did look really stressed about something, even after saving us...

Man: But anyway, things are perfectly fine here now, so relax and enjoy your stay! Trust me, it's a great place!

Peperoncino: ...

Mash: A mysterious, heroic doctor...

Mash: Da Vinci, can we quickly go over what you know about Asclepius again?

Da Vinci: Sure thing.

Da Vinci: There's all sorts of Casters. Mages, witches, alchemists, beautiful inventors whose genius knows no bounds...

Da Vinci: But in Asclepius's case, given his title and background, he's definitely a doctor.

Mash: I knew it. Master, this might mean we were right after all!

Fujimaru 1: Doctors are always good, right!?

Fujimaru 2: Maybe he'll be willing to join us!

Mash: Right! If he's only pretending to obey Arjuna...

Mash: ...but deep down, he knows this world is wrong, and can't bear to see people in need, maybe we can convince him to–

Holmes: You should have your answer to that directly. Here he comes now.

Holmes: He doesn't appear to be going on the offensive,but keep your guard up all the same.

Asclepius: What the? What's going on here?

Rama: There he is. Even if we did come here looking for him, I wasn't expecting to find him this quickly. You must have some very good karma indeed, Master.

Mash: This is perfect. We were just hoping to talk to you, Asclepius. Are you the one who–

Asclepius: Shut up. I've been saving this town for my experiments.

Asclepius: It's practically my exam room, and I won't tolerate patients worth less than used gauze speaking out of turn in here. Patients should only speak when spoken to.

Asclepius: Is this your doing? How did you heal all the infected when I didn't lift a finger to help them!?

Mash: ...Huh?

Peperoncino: My, my. I guess you're not the good doctor we've been hearing about after all.

Asclepius: Of course not. I was just about to study this plague.

Asclepius: Why would I bring anything that could cure it?

Asclepius: Ugh, idiots...Medicine is advanced by studying new diseases as they progress.

Asclepius: I thought with the plague in town,I would at least have no shortage of cases...

Asclepius: But now you're telling me there's not a single infected person left!? You can't be serious!

Asclepius: I don't know who you are, but you have some nerve taking away my precious research opportunity!

Ganesha: Hmm, he sounds like a self-centered sociopath. I'm guessing he dumped every stat point into INT, everything else be damned.

Rama: Hmph. I don't know what you mean by the second part, but I agree wholeheartedly with the first.

Rama: Just answer me this. Did you spread this plague here yourself?

Mash: ...?

Asclepius: Huh? What are you, stupid? What useless mush do you have festering between your ears? Why would anyone ever do that?

Asclepius: Of course I want to advance medicine by studying as many cases of disease as possible, but the point is to cure patients, not create new ones.

Holmes: Be that as it would seem you didn't do anything to limit the disease's spread, either.

Asclepius: Because I knew I couldn't. I don't waste my time with pointless endeavors. It's far more sensible to make a vaccine after studying the disease.

Lakshmi: Even if more people end up dying in the meantime?

Asclepius: Yes, that is undeniably tragic. But as long as they die while I'm studying them, they serve to advance medicine.

Asclepius: I stake my pride as a doctor on never letting a patient die for nothing.

Asclepius: I'll always make sure their death leads to a new discovery...

Asclepius: ...and eventually, to advancing medicine as a whole...

Ganesha: Sounds nice and all but the guy is OOZING mad scientist vibes!

Ganesha: I don't think we can hope for much from him.

Ganesha: He didn't heal this town, and he isn't anything like Nezha either!

Asclepius: Aha...I see. So that's your game.

Asclepius: You thought that deep down, I might be dissatisfied with the way that god runs things here, just like Nezha was?

Mash: I take it that means you aren't then?

Asclepius: Of course not!

Asclepius: Excising all that is defective or unnecessary from the world? That is how things ought to be!

Asclepius: It's immeasurably better than a weak, foolish god getting rid of exceptional things...

Asclepius: Do you know what happened to me? Do you have any idea what Zeus put me through?

Fujimaru 1: I've heard stories...

Fujimaru 2: (What was it again...? )

Da Vinci: Oopsies, you already forgot? Okay, no problem. I'll just give you a quick refresher course!

Da Vinci: In Greek mythology, Asclepius masters the art of medicine...and ultimately ends up creating a tonic that can bring the dead back to life.

Da Vinci: As you can imagine, the gods didn't take too kindly to that.

Da Vinci: Particularly Hades, the god of the underworld, who was especially displeased at the idea of humans overcoming death and making a joke out of his Authority.

Da Vinci: But since Hades couldn't harm Asclepius himself on account of him being Apollo's kid and all, he asked Zeus to punish him instead.

Da Vinci: Zeus agreed, and killed Asclepius with a thunderbolt through the heart...

Asclepius: ...

Da Vinci: But to try and provide Apollo with some consolation, Zeus also brought Asclepius's body to the heavens...

Da Vinci: ...and gave him a place among the gods as the constellation Ophiuchus, the “Serpent Bearer. ”

Asclepius: Some consolation that was. “Now that I've made you a god as well, all is forgiven, yes”!? I never asked for that! It was meaningless! Completely and utterly meaningless!

Asclepius: All I ever wanted was to advance the field of medicine! All I did was find a way to cure death!

Asclepius: But the Greek gods were too narrow-minded, lazy, cowardly, and arrogant to accept that.

Asclepius: They were wrong, and they punished me for all the wrong reasons.

Asclepius: They punished me for nothing more than achieving excellence.

Peperoncino: Ahh...Now I see.

Asclepius: But this world is the complete opposite of that. All that is excellent endures, and all that is inferior disappears!

Asclepius: It couldn't be simpler! This is exactly how things are meant to be! This is what a just world looks like!

Rama: And what is it you want when that world reaches its end state?

Asclepius: Weren't you listening to me? All I want is to advance my medical arts. I thought I made that clear.

Mash: ...So you don't care what the world loses as long as it helps you with that?

Asclepius: Huh? As long as mankind doesn't go extinct,people will always need doctors, right?

Asclepius: So don't worry about that. There will always be people around.

Asclepius: I'm willing to rack up as many sacrifices as it takes to ensure my patients' survival, no matter the cost!

Mash: ...Master. I'm afraid Asclepius is–

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, I know.

Fujimaru 2: Yeah...Something's fundamentally wrong with him.

Lakshmi: Medicine is important,but you cannot ignore how people feel.

Lakshmi: You may be an excellent doctor...but you've completely failed to treat these people's cries of grief!

Asclepius: I am no counselor. There are some conditions I can't do a damn thing about. Like stupidity.

Asclepius: Ugh, there's nothing I hate more than stupid patients.

Asclepius: All you have to do is listen. If your doctor says not to do something, don't do it. If they say to do something, do it.

Asclepius: Why is that so hard for you to understand!? Don't you want to get better!?

Asclepius: It doesn't make any damn sense! It's just like I thought. Your heads are the most affected part!

Asclepius: If you patients are so soft in the head that you're trying to get rid of this just world...then it's clear which part of you I need to amputate.

Goredolf: So it's a fight he wants, is it!? Get him, Fujimaru! Don't be afraid! He's only a Caster, and a just doctor at that!

Asclepius: “Just a doctor”!? Have you forgotten that Arjuna made me a Lōkapāla, and granted me one of his Divinities?

Asclepius: The Indian god he bestowed upon me...

Asclepius: Yama.

Peperoncino: Yama...That's the god of death, king of the dead,and the Regent of the South!

Mash: Master, I'm seeing new hostiles appearing out of the ground one after the other...They appear to be moving skeletons!

Asclepius: I guess Arjuna thought Yama would suit me, since I already managed to resurrect the dead on my own.

Asclepius: Well, as long as it's not Hades, I can get along with another god of the underworld...and I have no qualms about using what I've been given.

Asclepius: Yama wields authority over the dead. Well, technically, it may be authority over this land's memory of the dead, but there is no meaningful difference.

Ganesha: Aaah! Great, so now we gotta play some kinda horde mode with zombies?

Ganesha: I don't think we'll be able to beat it unless you've got some special attacks with invincibility and massive AoE!

Goredolf: The hell? He summoned that many fighters that quickly, without any preparation or chanting!? What kind of necromancy is that?

Holmes: This is clearly outside the realm of human magecraft.

Holmes: This is divine power, just like how Kubēra let Nezha use so many Noble Phantasms at once. Be very careful.

Fujimaru 1: Got it!

Asclepius: Even idiots like you know about autopsies, yes? The dead can still be valuable in medicine.

Asclepius: You're all probably going to die here now that you're up against me...but don't you feel better knowing your deaths will be useful?


Man: I don't know how we can thank you! As if curing our disease wasn't enough, you even tended our fields for us...

Man: Are you a new Lōkapāla!? You must be, to show us this much kindness!

Man: Please, stay with us. The whole town would be thrilled to have you!

???: ...Tch.

Man: Hm?

???: ...Sorry. My throat's been acting up a bit. Pay it no mind.

???: I just stopped by to check on things. This isn't the fundamental solution this Lost–this world needs.

???: It's the ones who will show up after me who are bound to end you.

???: They're from an organization called Chaldea, just as I am. Make sure to welcome them when they get here. It'll speed things up.

Man: Okay...But, it isn't, um, Chaldea we want to thank. It's you.

Man: Please, won't you stay with us for just a little while? We would be honored...delighted, even, to repay someone so virtuous.

Woman: Yes, exactly. Please, right this way. Everyone's dying to hear more about you!

???: (They really mean it. These people can't have much to spare, yet they still want to reward an outsider...)

???: (...Never mind that. Why do they like me at all? This sort of thing would never have happened before. )

???: (I'm not doing anything different than I was before. I'm still operating under the exact same principles I always have. So why am I seeing such a different reaction now...? )

???: (Is it only because of what I look like? Do people really care about appearances that much? )

???: (Oh well. If that's is true,it suits my needs perfectly. )


Mash: They just keep coming, no matter how many we take down...Wait. What's that!?

Da Vinci: Shit, it's a kid! Most of the town's residents hid after you started fighting...but he must've been left behind!

Fujimaru 1: Kid, get out of here! It's not safe!

Fujimaru 2: We need to protect him no matter what!

Child: A-aaahhh...

Child: (Sniff) O-ow ow ow...

Ganesha: Crap, he tripped. And he's too far away to...Huh?

Asclepius: What's wrong? You fell down? Hmm, your knee is injured. Let me see it.

Child: G-god...?

Asclepius: So you cut it on a rock. Even in the middle of town,the roads really need more work.

Asclepius: That's why a fall at that speed can produce lacerations like this...Now I see.

Asclepius: I'll have to remember the size and depth of his wound, so I can comprehend similar situations in the future with just a glance.

Asclepius: As for your wound, there's nothing unusually wrong with it. To treat it, first we wash it with clean water.

Asclepius: Then we apply some of these medicinal herbs.

Child: It's not bleeding anymore...?

Asclepius: Of course not. I just stopped it.

Asclepius: Now listen to me. Don't take that off until the pain is all gone. Doctor's orders.

Asclepius: If you can't listen to them, that will mean your thick skull is the real problem. Don't make me give up on you.

Child: I-I won't! I promise! Thank you, god!

Asclepius: That's a good patient. Take care.

Ganesha: Whaaa? What the heck, guy!? Are you one of those gruff, curmudgeonly doctors who hides his heart of gold beneath his prickly exterior?

Asclepius: What are you talking about?

Asclepius: I heal those who need healing, and show no mercy to those who would interfere with my medicinal pursuits.

Asclepius: That's all there is to it. It couldn't be simpler.

Lakshmi: That dedication is not a bad thing in itself.

Lakshmi: But why do you insist on prioritizing that over all else?

Lakshmi: How can you so casually dismiss everything else wrong with this world, or the suffering of its people?

Asclepius: You're asking my reasons? ...That's a new one. They're so blindingly obvious that I don't even have an answer ready.

Asclepius: To tell you that, I'd have to pay attention to things I usually ignore, and bring my thinking down to the level of my most idiotic of patients.

Asclepius: ...

Asclepius: Never mind. There's no point. I'm just going to keep working on kicking you interlopers out of my exam room.

Rama: First you help a child, and now you're back to raising the dead...Which are you looking for, praise or revulsion?

Asclepius: I have no need for either. Now will you stop acting up? You are the very worst sort of patient, aren't you?

Rama: It doesn't matter how many dead you throw at us. If I can defeat a great rakshasa, I can defeat you too.

Asclepius: It never fails. It's always the most ignorant patients who make things worse.

Asclepius: You should simply have resigned yourselves to assisting me in my study of medicine.

Asclepius: Now this has taken long enough that he's shown up.

Fujimaru 1: ...?

Holmes: I'll explain later! All of you, cease combat and get away from there immediately!

Da Vinci: I knew this was a possibility, but I didn't think it would actually happen now!

Da Vinci: And by “this,” I mean the worst-goddamn-case scenario we can think of. Talk about luck not being on our side!

Lakshmi: ...

Mash: Master! Over there, in the sky! It's...!

Rama: Arjuna!

Ganesha: Whaaa...!? I thought he spent his time flying around the Tree of Emptiness!

Asclepius: I swear, there's nothing worse than amateurish home remedies.

Asclepius: With his kind of power, and Vimana's mobility, there's no need for him to stand around guarding that tree.

Asclepius: Especially now that no one besides him can even get close to it, thanks to that ocean growing bigger.

Asclepius: The only reason he usually stays there is because he typically has no need to go anywhere else.

Asclepius: Which of course means that if he does have a need to go somewhere else, he will.

Asclepius: Of course, in this particular case, he only knows because I informed him when I found you, as he ordered me to do.

Asclepius: I guess he's actually taken a rare interest in you.

Fujimaru 1: (We can't get away from him! )

Fujimaru 2: (They've got us surrounded! )

God Arjuna: ...

Lakshmi: are the sole god of this world. The one they say absorbed every other Divinity in India!

God Arjuna: are...a god, too? Ah, are a tiny, insignificant one...

Lakshmi: Shut up! You are nothing but a shadow of a once-great hero! Don't you dare compare me to your stolen Divinities!

Lakshmi: Your insolence is unforgivable. Now release every god you have within you! Immediately!

Rama: I couldn't agree more. I'm sure you have a Divinity linked to this world's Sita. I'm not letting you get away!

Da Vinci: Okay, but maybe you could not let him get away later!? Haven't I told you guys that you don't stand a chance against him yet!?

Da Vinci: In fact, I'm pretty sure we told you to get out of there! Did you not hear us or something!?

Peperoncino: Oh, we heard you just fine! But it's not that simple!

Mash: I don't think we can avoid combat at this point.

Fujimaru 1: We'll get through this! Somehow!

Fujimaru 2: Let's find our chance and get out of here!

Mash: Yes, Master! We can't let our mission end here...Awaiting your orders!


Narration: I blink out of sheer boredom.

Narration: In the infinitesimal span of that blink...I had a dream. How unusual.

Narration: It was a dream about a foolish war.

Narration: A war that started for laughable reasons, persisted in absurdity, and ended in trivialities.

Narration: There is something there. Something within my memories fighting alongside my beloved friends and brothers.

Narration: Wanting nothing more than to grant their wishes, my arrows found their way into every one of our hated enemies.

Narration: I fought earnestly, with no shame, proud to be counted among my brothers' ranks.

Narration: But, even so, something nagged at me deep within my heart.

Narration: Something dark and wriggling.

Narration: As I grow bored of even that, I open my eyes. And once the darkness fades away...

Narration: ...I forget that I ever dreamed at all.

Narration: God has no need of dreams.


Mash: ...Ortinax's overloading...Wait...please...I'm not...done for ye–

Rama: You...bastard...I can't...afford to lose...

Rama: If I can't...protect Fujimaru and...[♂ his /♀ her]companions...then who...Guh...

Ganesha: Oh man, oh man...I guess...I wasn't good enough after all...

Ganesha: Even though Karna asked me to take over for him...I just can't...

Lakshmi: ...Dammit. I guess I've failed...yet again...

God Arjuna: ...

Asclepius: Well? Was this a satisfying diversion?

God Arjuna: No...I am just...disappointed...

God Arjuna: These people...survived my reconstruction...I thought...maybe...they were special...

God Arjuna: But...they were not worth...verifying...

God Arjuna: Although...what did...I verify...?

God Arjuna: ...

God Arjuna: I feel no understand.

Asclepius: Hey! First you had me call you, now you're just up and leaving? What do you want me to do with them?

God Arjuna: I no

Asclepius: ...Messing things up and capriciously leaving as soon as he gets bored, huh. He's a god all right.

Asclepius: Guess this means I can do whatever I want with them. At least he didn't obliterate them with a divine punishment.

Asclepius: Okay then...

Asclepius: ...let's hurry up and end this already,so I can get back to my research.

Goredolf: Hey. Hey! Heeey!

Goredolf: Are you s-serious? None of you can even move?

Peperoncino: ...!

Peperoncino: (...I guess there wasn't any point in choosing after all. )

Narration: ...I knew I was a hopeless dead end.

Narration: Thanks to my Rojintsu–the only power I was born with–I couldn't help but be “enlightened” about that.

Narration: So I never needed to lie to myself. I don't even need to remember when it began, because I always knew from the start.

Narration: My life has no value. I'm just a pitiful jester, born to a pitiful world.

Narration: So then...why did I make that choice?

Narration: Why was I holding on so hard?

Peperoncino: (Haha...Right. Of course. )

Peperoncino: (It's because if I die here and now...)

Peperoncino: (...then if nothing else, these feelings won't have been worthless, and they won't be erased. )

Peperoncino: (In that case, maybe this is an end I can accept...)

Asclepius: Wh-What the!? My specimens!

???: I'm surprised this place turned out to be a land of the dead. Or did I just pick an odd time to visit?

Peperoncino: Wha...What in the world!? What are you doing here, Daybit!?


Fujimaru 1: Daybit?

Fujimaru 2: A Crypter...?

Goredolf: D-Daybit Sem Void! The Crypter with the most talent of them all!?

Goredolf: I thought he was off raising another Lostbelt! A-and what's that!?

Holmes: Is that...a Servant?

Da Vinci: ...!

Da Vinci: (The miasma around them is too strong for us to properly observe them, but I was just able to get an idea of their scale...)

Da Vinci: (...That's a Grand Servant. There's no doubt about it. Daybit somehow formed a contract with a Grand Servant! )

Asclepius: What's this about? Who are you, and what is...

Asclepius: ...!?

???: Yama...Also known as Yamaten. Passing judgment on the dead? What a joke.

???: Death is meant to be eaten. Life is meant to be sacrificed. Giving the dead freedom would never pass in my world.

???: So I consumed them. But they tasted terrible. It proves they haven't been eating anything decent.

Daybit: Try to stay behind me. Remember, this isn't your land. Didn't anyone ever teach you not to drink the tap water when you travel?

???: Good point. I'll be more careful. Besides, we didn't come here for the food.

Mash: Daybit...!

Daybit: ...

Fujimaru 1: (He's not even looking this way...)

Peperoncino: Wh-why are you here? HOW are you here? You can't just show up and surprise me like this!

Peperoncino: I didn't have any time to prepare, my hair is a mess! Oh gosh, you've got to give me some warning!

Daybit: Should I have waited? You looked like you were in trouble, so I thought I would help.

Peperoncino: I-I mean, don't get me wrong! You definitely saved my life, and I appreciate it!

Peperoncino: But seriously, what are you doing here in India!?

Daybit: I came because of the way you were behaving at our last meeting.

Daybit: I wasn't sure if it was because things were going well or poorly for you, but I found it strange that you didn't say anything about how things were going in your Lostbelt.

Daybit: We may have an agreement not to interfere with each other's Lostbelts, but there are no rules against making personal contact.

Daybit: I acted on intuition rather than logic, and then only because I consider you a friend...Was I out of line?

Peperoncino: Oh, no, not at all. It's just, this is a Lostbelt, you know? You can't just walk in and out of them, right?

Daybit: We can't, no. But fortunately, we know someone who can.

Koyanskaya: Hellooo! Whether it's kidnapping, assassinations, or coup d'états, NFF Services is ready and waiting to assist!

Koyanskaya: That said, I was pretty preoccupied with my own affairs, so I was hoping to avoid answering any sudden business calls for a while...

Koyanskaya: ...but you know, there aren't many people like Daybit around, right? So I thought it would be worthwhile to have him owe me a liiittle favor, without the Foreign God getting in the way.

Fujimaru 1: Koyanskaya...!

Koyanskaya: Well, if it isn't Fujimaru. Not so long time no see. Oh, don't worry, I'm doing my best to torment the humans here just as much as you'd expect.

Koyanskaya: Buuut, until Arjuna gets at least a little farther away from here, I can't really have as much fun as I'd like.

Koyanskaya: Let's just say I don't want to draw too much of his attention right now by doing as I please.

Koyanskaya: So in the meantime, just think of me as a beautiful tour conductor keeping a silent but watchful eye on her group of students on a field trip and don't pay me any mind♡

Daybit: ...While I was at it, I thought this would be a good chance to ascertain the extent of this woman's abilities. They did not come cheap, but you needn't worry about that.

Daybit: Anyway, what happened to you? Your contracted Servant is nowhere to be seen, and you're fighting alongside our enemy.

Daybit: It was worth the few minutes it took to see this for myself, but I can't imagine how you got to this point.

Peperoncino: It's because I can't go along with this god, the core of this Indian Lostbelt...or the way he does things.

Peperoncino: But I couldn't criticize him in front of Kirschtaria, since one of the Foreign God's Alter Ego Disciples is involved.

Daybit: Why can't you go along with him? His way of doing things may be unusual, but his logic appears sound.

Peperoncino: Hmm...I guess it's a matter of taste? Lifestyle, aesthetics, principles...that sort of thing?

Peperoncino: I guess, to put it another way,it's because of who I am.

Daybit: So you haven't turned your back on the Crypters then. In that case, there's no problem.

Peperoncino: Of course not! I would never abandon you guys.

Peperoncino: But I can't abandon these kids either. Now that things have come to this, I'm planning on helping them out until this is over, one way or the other.

Peperoncino: That shouldn't be a problem, right?

Daybit: I see. You're a good man, Myourenji. You really know how to take care of people.

Peperoncino: Eeeeee!

Fujimaru 1: Myourenji?

Fujimaru 2: Sorry? I didn't quite catch that.

Daybit: Can you defeat this god?

Peperoncino: Ugh, you're already moving past it like it never happened...

Peperoncino: Anyway, I'm trying, but honestly, it's a real challenge. I mean, he's pretty much a perfect being.

Peperoncino: ...I don't suppose you have any advice for me, do you?

Daybit: So you're up against a perfect god, huh.... Hmm.

Daybit: No, I don't have any advice. The more godlike a god is, the stronger they are. It's pointless to even try to fight a perfected god.

Peperoncino: Tell me something I don't know.

Daybit: You should change your plan of attack.

Daybit: You can't take something away from someone who has nothing, but you can always take something away from someone who has everything.

Peperoncino: ...!

Peperoncino:'re saying I should try to slow him down?

Daybit: I have to go now. Guess we didn't have time to celebrate our reunion. Don't tell Wodime about this.

Daybit: I may not have violated the agreement, but it still doesn't look good.

Koyanskaya: Oh, are you headed back now? Thank you for traveling with NFF♡

Koyanskaya: Okay everyone, I hope you don't mind if we step out for now. Don't worry, I'll be coming back very shortly.

Daybit: ...

Fujimaru 1: (Did he just look at me right before he left...? )

Goredolf: Christ on a cracker! Between the other Crypter and that minx showing up out of nowhere, it's been one thing after another! But never mind that now!

Goredolf: You there, field team! I trust you can move now!?

Rama: Of course! That bought us more than enough time to get out of that predicament!

Rama: Master! Arjuna has left, there are fewer dead now, and the Crypter is gone!

Ganesha: And we even have an idea of Pepe's real name now!

Fou: Fooou, fou?

Peperoncino: I-I don't know what you're talking about. In fact, just forget you heard anything!

Peperoncino: We have bigger fish to fry right now!

Peperoncino: Ahh, I feel much better. There's just something about a sudden stroke of luck that puts you in a good mood.

Peperoncino: All righty, let's strike back while the iron is hot!

Lakshmi: ...A sudden stroke of luck, huh. I just hope it's not a prelude to a greater stroke of bad luck...

Lakshmi: Either way, it looks like I'll have to put it out of my mind for now!

Mash: Ortinax load reduction sequence successful...Output has restabilized!

Mash: Asclepius appears to still be reeling from Daybit's surprise attack! Now's our chance, Master!


Asclepius: Dammit. Can a doctor really accept his death at the hands of a violent patient? No. Definitely not.

A:Mash: Asclepius is making an escape!

Holmes: I'd prefer not to let him get away, given how he's our current priority target. Can you go after him?

Ganesha: N-no way. I'm so exhausted I can barely move as it is...

Rama: We still haven't recovered from the wounds Arjuna inflicted on us. We'll just have to call this one a draw.

Lakshmi: Good grief...Now that the battle is over, I expect the townspeople will come out of hiding soon.

Lakshmi: It would be a lot of trouble to explain what just happened to them. I say we leave now.

Peperoncino: Sounds good to me. Why don't we head back to your walled village–Dival, was it? –And plan our next course of action on the way?

Lakshmi: ...You seem awfully pleased about all this.

Peperoncino: Do I? I didn't think I was acting any different than usual.

Fujimaru 1: Something's definitely up, Myourenji.

Fujimaru 2: You're definitely pleased, Myourenji.

Peperoncino: Wha...!? Don't...!

Peperoncino: (Sigh)...Okay, you win. If you want to know about that stuff so badly, I'll tell you on the way.

Peperoncino: Let's just leave before the locals start throwing stones at us for assaulting an agent of god or something.

Mash: ...

Fujimaru 1: You okay, Mash?

Mash: Oh, uh, yes, I'm fine.

Mash: Well, not FINE fine. I'm just as exhausted and hurt as everyone else is.

Mash: I was just...thinking about something else.

Mash: Now that we've faced Arjuna directly, it's clear just how overwhelmingly powerful he is.

Mash: And not just as a lone fighter.

Mash: I could tell he was on a completely different scale...almost like he was competing with the ground itself to see who was stronger.

Mash: Oh, but please don't misunderstand me, Master! I'm not about to give up by any means!

Mash: I'm just saying, analytically speaking, that Arjuna is undoubtedly the most powerful god in this world.

Mash: And...the more I think about how we could hold our own against him, the more I come up blank...

Mash: Even if we succeed at defeating the Lōkapāla and reducing his power, would it really make any difference...?

Fou: Fou...

Fujimaru 1: We'll come up with something if we all brainstorm together.

Fujimaru 2: Don't worry. We'll figure something out. I know it.

Mash: Yes...You're right. I'm sure it'll be fine.

Mash: Okay, Master, shall we start heading back? Our first order of business: get Pepe to tell us his full name.

Peperoncino: Not you too, Mashie!?

Section 12: Advancement Impulse/People and the Girl

Peperoncino: ...Honestly, I don't think the name on your birth certificate matters that much.

Peperoncino: What really matters is what people think of you and what THEY call you.

Peperoncino: That says so much more about who you really are than a name in some database ever could.

Peperoncino: Just look at all the famous historical figures who aren't known by the names they were given at birth!

Peperoncino: You even had some in Chaldea, like Billy the Kid and Blackbeard, right? So there's no reason I can't–

Fujimaru 1: Nice try. Now spit it out!

Fujimaru 2: Oh just tell us your real name already!

Peperoncino: Will you listen to me!? This is important, dammit!

Peperoncino: ...Oh, the hell with it. It's Arou, okay?

Peperoncino: My old name is Myourenji Arou.

Mash: Myourenji Arou...So that's your real name?

Fujimaru 1: I had a feeling you were Japanese!

Fujimaru 2: Figures. Where the heck did “Peperoncino” come from...?

Peperoncino: Hm, so you had your suspicions all along,did you, Fujimaru!?

Peperoncino: You're surprisingly observant, aren't you? You little devil, you!

Mash: I'm impressed you figured that out before I did when I've known Pepe longer, Senpai...I guess I still have a lot to learn about being more observant...

Peperoncino: Anyway, it really doesn't mean anything to me, so I'd rather you just keep calling me Sexy Pepe as always.

Peperoncino: In fact, don't even bother calling me that other name, 'cause I won't respond.

Fou: Fou fooou.

Peperoncino: ...And don't ask me anything else about where I came from or who I was before Chaldea. Besides, there's nothing there that isn't in my Team A profile.

Peperoncino: All you need to know is that after I left Japan for the West and started really enjoying my life, one thing led to another, and I ended up getting to know some people at the Clock Tower.

Peperoncino: Eventually, Marisbury invited me to Chaldea, saying my combat experience was just what he needed to make up for the academic bent of all the other mages...

Peperoncino: ...and now, here we are.

Da Vinci: So then, you must've been born to a mage family, right? Shugendou, was it?

Da Vinci: I'd looove to learn more about it, since it's the foundation of Far East magecraft and all. Pleeease? (Puppy dog eyes)

Peperoncino: Don't try to milk the whole little girl appearance thing. It's demeaning.

Holmes: I've heard that Shugendou is a mixture of Buddhism and mountain worship unique to Japan.

Holmes: Did Marisbury bring you on to serve as Team A's guide...or perhaps an overseer of sorts?

Holmes: Survival is crucial when Rayshifting to an unfamiliar location, after all.

Holmes: Perhaps it was your job to keep an eye on the others and ensure they could survive even in harsh environments?

Peperoncino: Hehe. I'll say it was something like that and leave it there.

Ganesha: I remember you saying something about being able to use Divine Power before.

Ganesha: But then, how come the names of the spells you use in battle don't sound anything like Shugendou?

Peperoncino: That's just 'cause I made them up myself. Traditional Japanese names are just lacking a certain je ne sais quoi.

Peperoncino: ...Anyway, as much as I love me, I'd love a different topic of conversation even more.

Peperoncino: Shouldn't we be discussing our next course of action?

Rama: He makes a good point. Honestly, I don't care what his name is. We should be trying to figure out how we can possibly take down Arjuna.

Mash: Yes...You're absolutely right.

Mash: I do think we're on the right track, but I can't help but think we're still missing something crucial...

Lakshmi: ...All right, enough stalling. You've got something in mind, don't you?

Mash: Huh?

Peperoncino: Who, me?

Lakshmi: Yes, you. It's obvious you know something, just like you did earlier. It's written all over your face.

Fujimaru 1: (She sure doesn't want for conviction...)

Peperoncino: Hehe, you got me.

Peperoncino: Daybit really is something else. I guess this is what you call natural intuition?

Peperoncino: “The more godlike a god is, the stronger they are. ”That's it in a nutshell.

Peperoncino: And it's exactly what we needed to be reminded of.

Mash: What do you mean...?

Peperoncino: It couldn't be more basic. Think about it. What makes a god a god? Here, let me put it another way.

Peperoncino: Which kind of god do you think is stronger? One nobody's ever heard of, or one everyone believes in and prays to?

Holmes: Now I see. Basic, indeed. A fact so elementary that I failed to consider it.

Meunière: I can't tell if you're serious,or if this is just sour grapes...

Peperoncino: There's something similar for Servants too. I think it's called a fame bonus?

Da Vinci: Ohhh, yeah. Now that you've pointed it out,it really is a simple problem.

Da Vinci: The reason Arjuna is a god here isn't just because he collected every Divinity in this land for himself.

Da Vinci: It's also because the people here worship him as a god.

Da Vinci: Buuut...what would happen if they didn't consider him a god anymore?

Goredolf: ...His divine strength would be reduced.

Holmes: Precisely, Director.

Fujimaru 1: Umm...I still don't get it.

Peperoncino: It means the fewer people who believe Arjuna's a god, the weaker he'll become.

Ganesha: Ganesha's super popular, so I don't have any idea what it feels like to have faith in you fade away. No, really.

Rama: I see. So this is like asking where I can be a greater hero: the India that knows me, or this India that doesn't.

Rama: By virtue of who I am, I can of course be a great hero in either...but there is still bound to be a difference.

Rama: If these two versions of me were to throw their Brahmastras at one another...

Rama: ...the victor would surely be the one from the India that knows me. And there would definitely be an observable gap between the two.

Mash: Now I get it. So then, how can we get people here to stop believing in Arjuna...?

Fujimaru 1: There's a great place to find out!

Fujimaru 2: We're already heading somewhere where we can figure that out!

Lakshmi: Dival...Then, you're saying my resistance was not for naught after all?

Peperoncino: Not at all! If anything, you already did the hardest work of making our first toehold! I'm super grateful!

Lakshmi: ...To be honest, I have had my doubts about my actions here.

Lakshmi: While I never doubted my conviction that this world was wrong, and desperately needed to be fixed...

Lakshmi: ...I did wonder if my efforts here were meaningful, and whether there was anything to be gained by involving the people of this land in my fight.

Mash: ...

Lakshmi: This war I started...people have gotten hurt.

Lakshmi: I may be a queen and a commander, but I am not so saintly as I am made out to be. I still have doubts.

Lakshmi: I do believe in what I'm doing, but I'm not so naive that I never thought to question it.

Lakshmi: I have never forgotten what one of the locals told me back when this began.

Lakshmi: They said what I was doing was meaningless. That I was pointlessly endangering innocents, even getting them hurt.

Lakshmi: wasn't meaningless after all, was it?

Peperoncino: It sure wasn't. Your village is showing us the way forward. Now we just need to keep spreading the gospel, so to speak.

Peperoncino: It might not be easy, but your village has proven that these people can change their minds.

Peperoncino: Who's to say the same can't happen somewhere else?

Lakshmi: ...You're right. Once we get back to Dival, I'll talk to the villagers and ask them to help us spread this movement.

Lakshmi: I expect the people of this land will be much more receptive to them than they would be to someone like me.

Peperoncino: Sure, but every movement needs a charismatic leader like yourself, y'know?

Lakshmi: Oh...

Mash: (A movement to get the people here to resist the current state of their world...I know that would help us...but...)

Peperoncino: (Oh...I see you've realized the paradox with this plan, Mashie. Figured you might...)

Rama: Good, our plan of action is set. Then let's be on our way.

Rama: You know, I think I even feel lighter on my feet now.

Ganesha: Guh, speak for yourself. All the bad karma I racked up as an unemployed bum is still weighing me down.

Ganesha: I wish there was a wagon or something here right now. It wouldn't even have to have any seats.

Ganesha: Really, I don't care what I ride on as long as I don't have to walk.

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Ganesha: Did you just jump on me like I'M the one who should be giving YOU a ride, you weird cat-thing!? Ganesha is no mere pack mule!

Ganesha: Do you think you're more important than a god!? I mean, you're really cute so I guess you can ride, but still...

Fou: Fou, fou. Kyu?


Lakshmi: What the...What happened here!?

Woman: Lady Lakshmi! You're back! Thank goodness!

Lakshmi: I'm glad you're all right. What in the world...No, wait. I know what happened here now. It's them!

Woman: Yes, it's the sacred beasts! A number of them suddenly showed up all at once, even though no one had died and the kali weren't attacking us!

Rama: We can figure out why later. Right now, there are buildings being destroyed, and people being attacked!

Rama: I'm sure you know what it is we need to do, Master!

Fujimaru 1: We have to help them!

Fujimaru 2: We have to drive the beasts away!

Lakshmi: Dammit...I knew it. Does this mean you won't let me forget after all...?


Rama: That takes care of all the sacred beasts. But, I'm afraid...

Woman: Ahh...Our village...Why? Why did this happen!?

Lakshmi: ...

Holmes: We drove away other sacred beasts and defeated Nezha here only a few days ago. Unfortunately, it is no surprise that this town may have drawn the enemy's notice...

Lakshmi: ...Forgive me...

Woman: I-it's all right, Lady Lakshmi. This wasn't your fault. We just weren't strong enough.

Woman: There were more of them than we were expecting, and some were bigger than any sacred beast we'd ever seen before.

Woman: Besides, they may have crushed our wall and destroyed our homes, but we still have our lives.

Woman: ...At least, that's how those of us who survived feel.

Ganesha: But, what're you gonna do now? That wall was there to keep you safe from the kali, right?

Ganesha: Now that it's been destroyed...

Rama: Forget fighting back. You can't even live here with your village in ruins like this.

Rama: Based on my experience as a king, my suggestion is to abandon the village. I think that is your only choice.

Woman: ...

Rama: I understand how you feel, but there is just no way you can rebuild your defenses before the next Kali Yuga.

Rama: As I see it, your only option is to stay in the closest nearby town–I think that would be Bichu–until the Kali Yuga is over.

Lakshmi: No! That's...They can't...

Woman: ...It's all right, Lady Lakshmi. He's right. We know we don't have any other choice.

Woman: I hate to leave the village I grew up in...but we can always rebuild. We can't bring people back to life.

Rama: ...I see. I may not be your king,but I commend your decision nonetheless.

Rama: You are strong and brave people,and you should be proud of that.

Fujimaru 1: We'll be with you every step of the way.

Fujimaru 2: Let's make sure they get there safely.

Mash: Yes, Master. Of course we will.

Mash: Although...I am a little uneasy about what will happen once we get there.

Ganesha: Hey, no point worrying about that now.

Ganesha: Besides, that mayor guy looked like he'd turned over a new leaf. I'm sure it'll be just fine.

Prakash: Oh my...What a terrible hardship you've all been through.

Prakash: Well, I don't see any need to discuss this with the others. Of course you can all stay here.

Lakshmi: Thank you. I can't tell you how grateful I am for your kindness and hospitality!

Prakash: Think nothing of it. This is what neighbors are for. The important thing is that you're all safe and sound.

Prakash: Make yourselves comfortable in the town hall for now. We can figure out what to do next once you're settled in.

Ganesha: Told ya!

Mash: Oh, thank goodness. This is such a relief!


Lakshmi: (...)

Lakshmi: (Ahh...)

Lakshmi: (My sins truly do run deep...)

Lakshmi: I...Goddess within me, what do you think?

Lakshmi: I know you won't answer me. But I also know that you're listening.

Lakshmi: That's why I asked you back then what it was I should do.

Lakshmi: ...And now, here we are.

Lakshmi: I know what I'm doing, and I've made my peace with it.

Lakshmi: But, even so, now that things have come to this,I can't help but wonder...

Lakshmi: The village is in ruins, lives have been lost, and people are grieving. Who can say this isn't the result of getting caught in that inescapable current?

Lakshmi: Is what I...what we're doing here...

Lakshmi: ...truly worth deceiving the Chaldeans–

Lakshmi: ...

Rama: Aha, so this is where you've been hiding. I was just taking a midnight walk. What brings you here?

Lakshmi: Oh, it's you...I was doing the same. I couldn't sleep, so I thought I'd sit out and watch the moon.

Rama: I see, I see. The moon really is lovely tonight. May I join you?

Lakshmi: Heh, I think it best you don't. If you mistake me for your wife again and try to, for instance, put your arm around me, we would lose a valuable fighter.

Rama: ...Forgive me. I meant no offense.

Rama: Though I have no romantic feelings for you, I should still have chosen my words more carefully.

Rama: My humblest apologies, Lakshmi.

Lakshmi: I'm afraid you'll have to enjoy the night sky alone, young king of bygone days. I'm going back to get some sleep.

Rama: ...Hmm, strange. I don't even know how to describe this feeling...

Asha: Whoa, it's such a surprise to wake up and see you here! Good morning, [♂ mister /♀ miss]!

Fujimaru 1: Morning! I see you're as cute as ever today!

Asha: Huh? Hehe...Nobody's ever called me cute before...You really surprised me...

Fujimaru 2: Morning! I see you're as cheery as ever today!

Asha: Uh-huh! It's the one thing I'm good at!

Mash: Good morning, Asha. Good morning, um...

Mash: Why do you have that axe, Ajai?

Ajai: ...Damn ulloo. It's for my job, of course.

Asha: My dad's a great lumberjack! He can cut down a tree thiiis big in no time!

Rama: A lumberjack, huh. That's a fine line of work. People can always use more wood.

Ajai: Shut up.... So you're the ones who brought the people from Dival here, huh?

Ajai: This town doesn't have that much to spare either. You'll regret that.

Mash: No we won't. Prakash welcomed them with open arms just yesterday.

Mash: We were just about to–

Prakash: There you are!

Mash: H-hello, Prakash. Is everything all right? Y-you seem upse–

Prakash: I heard why you had to leave your village!

Prakash: It's because a pack of sacred beasts attacked it! Our god's own holy agents!

Prakash: The sacred beasts would never destroy a village unless it needed to be destroyed! It must have been irredeemably evil!

Prakash: No one from that village is welcome here!

Lakshmi: Hold it. We told you ourselves what brought us here. We told you what we had done to earn the beasts' ire, and our reasons for doing so.

Lakshmi: You had no problem with any of it yesterday. You said that loving your neighbor was the most noble act anyone could–

Prakash: Oh yes, I heard all about what you did! You abandoned your prayers, and turned your backs on our god!

Prakash: You took up corrupt arms against kali and sacred beast alike, and slaughtered them with your own barbaric hands!

Prakash: I did feel sorry for you, as I assumed you must have had no other choice...but that has nothing to do with our town!

Prakash: And yet you still had the gall to come here and shamelessly ask us for help!

Prakash: The sheer audacity of it all! Your insolence sickens me!

Ganesha: Wait, how are we back to this whole song and dance? Oooh, I know! This is his evil twin, isn't it!?

Holmes: Do you truly believe I would ever be deceived by such a simple trick?

Holmes: If a mere evil twin were all it took to fool me,I would shutter my business and retire to Sussex.

Man: Yeah! You're all filthy barbarians! That's why the sacred beasts purified your village!

Woman: You brought this on yourselves! You should all be ashamed!

Fujimaru 1: Now the villagers are joining in...!

Da Vinci: Hmm, they were all fine with this yesterday. What happened? Did they get brainwashed overnight or something?

Peperoncino: You might be closer to the mark than you think.

Peperoncino: It's said that people's hearts grow cold when a yuga cycle, even a normal one, nears its end.

Peperoncino: That lines up with my experiences too, but it's still a shock to see them change so much, so quickly.

Asha: Why's everyone so angry now? I don't like this...

Ajai: ...Told you so.

Holmes: Of course, I expect there is a bit of variance between individuals as far as this change is concerned. What a fascinating metaphysical law.

Mash: N-never mind that now! Look!

E:Man: Shut up! You have no idea what we've been through!

F:Woman: Yeah! I'm sick and tired of forgetting the people I've loved!

Man: Don't you talk to that like us, you heretics! We are good people who keep the god's laws!

Woman: That's right! We want nothing to do with your blasphemy!

Lakshmi: ...I don't like this. The last thing we want is people fighting each other.

Da Vinci: I don't suppose it would be any better if they were fighting things that aren't people?

Da Vinci: Like, say...a pack of decidedly inhuman things that are headed towards that town as we speak?

Peperoncino: Well, it is the Dvāpara Yuga now. This is about the time when they start to pick up the pace!

People: It's the kali! The kali are here! Okay, everyone...

People: Get ready to pray/fight!


F:Woman: Ahh...!

F:Woman: I-is this it? Does this mean we were never any match for the kali to begin with...!?

Lakshmi: Don't give up! Our greatest strength is our ability to work together! Follow my lead; I'll clear a way forward!

Woman: R-right!

H:Man A: I-I can't believe it...They really are fighting back.

I:Man B: Yeah...I don't get it. The ones in the weird outfits aside, they're just regular people, same as us, right? Why would they do that...?

Ajai: ...

Asha: [♂ Mister /♀ Miss]...

Man: A-a kali broke through the wall! God protect me! God protect us all!

Asha: Ah...Aah...

Ajai: Dammit. Now I've done it.

Ajai: It's all their fault. Now that they've shown us we can fight back body just moved on its own...

Ajai: ...Well, there's nothing to be done for it now. Come on, Asha!

Asha: F-father...?

Ajai: Prayers aren't gonna do anything now that the wall's broken. The only thing I can depend on now is my axe.

Ajai: We're getting out of here Asha. Those people are ulloo, but we've still got better odds sticking with them.

Asha: ...O-okay!

H:Man A: H-hey! What're you guys doing!?

I:Man B: ...H-hold on! I'm coming with you! I'm not gonna let myself get eaten without a fight!

H:Man A: Huh!? ...Wait up! I'm coming too!

Mash: Master, look! More people are joining us in the fight!

Mash: And not to get away from the kali...but to help the people they're attacking!

Fujimaru 1: That's a big help and all, but...

Fujimaru 2: ...

Lakshmi: Hehe. As I thought, there's nothing more inspiring than the sight of ordinary people valiantly fighting for their lives.

Lakshmi: Compared to that, a mere queen can only do so much.

Rama: Of course, as I think someone once said, it also matters how brightly the one standing at the forefront shines.

Mash: ...

Lakshmi: ...? There it is again. You two have had that sad look on your faces ever since we decided to try and win more people over to the resistance.

Lakshmi: Is there something wrong with the people of this land fighting back? If there is, then please, tell me.

Holmes: Ah, yes. We haven't yet told you precisely what will happen once this Lostbelt's Tree of Emptiness is cut down, have we?

Holmes: ...I'll let you decide whether or not to tell her.

Fujimaru 1: ...Of course we're going to tell her. But we can't right now!

Fujimaru 2: We'll tell her, but now's not exactly the best time!

Goredolf: ...Hmph. Fujimaru is right. I am commanding this mission, and I have no plans to hide the truth.

Goredolf: But this isn't the sort of thing you just drop on someone in the middle of battle.

Goredolf: So...for the time being, I'd ask that you just focus on winning this fight. The rest can wait until after that.

Rama: I haven't heard much about this either. Whatever it is, it sounds very important.

Ganesha: ...

Lakshmi: ...?

Fou: Fou!

Mash: Lakshmi! We'll explain everything after this battle. I promise.

Mash: But there are even more kali headed this way right now. We need to deal with them before we–

Mash: Huh!?

Rama: An arrow just blasted those kali away! Where did it come from!?

Ganesha: I can't believe it...It looked to me like it came from outside the town!

Tell: Hehe. Gotta keep things, even our god's judgment, at least sorta fair, seeing as I'm his servant and all.

Tell: If the kali unfairly outnumber the sacred beasts, it's my job to thin the herd, even if it is a pain in the ass.

Da Vinci: This is not good. I was hoping we could take our time with him after dealing with Asclepius, but now he's shown up on his own...!

Mash: The Archer...William Tell must have killed those kali from quite a distance! Be careful, Master!

Goredolf: Whaaat!? You're telling me he nailed them from that far away!? Even a sniper rifle would have trouble at that range!

Holmes: Remember, he's a Servant, and an Archer at that. We should assume his arrows are infused with magical energy.

Holmes: Nor can we assume his crossbow is less deadly than a modern assault rifle merely because it appears to be old-fashioned.

Rama: Nonetheless, the sheer distance is absurd. Even my sharp eyes can't clearly make out his position!

Peperoncino: True, this is too much, even for a first-rate Archer. Maybe the Divinity he was given has something to do with it?

Man: An agent of god and the sacred beasts have come to save us! I knew our prayers would be answered!

Woman: We're saved, everyone! We're going to be okay now!

Ajai: Damn ulloo...I don't know how I know this, but if those arrows end up hitting one of us by mistake...

Ajai: ...I can tell the god wouldn't lift a finger to help us.

Ajai: ...Stay back, Asha. Don't you dare get in front of me. I mean it.

Asha: I-I won't.... Thank you, Father.

Mash: This is going to be a difficult fight! Those arrows may be taking out kali right now, but there's no telling when they might come flying toward us.

Mash: I'm going to focus first and foremost on keeping you safe, Master. Whatever you do, make sure to stay behind my shield!


Rama: That's the last of the kali! But now...

Mash: The sniper hasn't stopped! He's going after us now!

Holmes: This is hardly a surprise. Given how openly you have been opposing their god's rule, it makes sense he would be unwilling to let this chance pass him by.

Holmes: The good news is, neither Asclepius nor Aśvatthāman are anywhere nearby.

Holmes: I suspect he just happened to catch sight of you while dealing with the kali, and decided to pick you off as well while he was at it.

Goredolf: Forget the coolheaded analysis, dammit! Make sure you keep a wall between you at all times! Find a shadow to hide in!

Mash: We are! But it's not–

Meunière: How the hell is he seeing you guys? And how the hell is he able to still snipe at you!? The only way this makes sense is if the arrows can go around obstacles!

Peperoncino: That might be exactly what's happening. I have an idea or two of how that could work.

Captain: ...(Sigh) I was just told to share some more facts about India, since I don't have anything better to do right now.

Captain: The Lōkapāla inside this guy is probably Vāyu, the god of wind. He'd be a great fit for an Archer.

Rama: Hanuman's spiritual father, huh. That would explain how he was able to fly so nimbly.

Rama: It could also explain how he's able to control his arrows so freely across such vast distances.

Captain: Vāyu is also the spiritual father of Arjuna's brother, Bhima, said to possess unparalleled strength. Gods don't come much bigger than him.

Captain: ...So, how are you going to fight him?

Mash: Khh! I'm still barely managing to deflect his arrows, but the longer this goes on...!

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Rama: The usual way to handle an Archer is to close the distance and negate their range advantage. What do you say, Master? Shall we try that?

Fujimaru 1: Let's give it a shot.

Mash: Wait! It's not safe to make a move without a plan!

Fujimaru 2: I don't think that'll work here.

Mash: ...You're right, Master. It won't.

Mash: ...!

Mash: We can only deal with his arrows right now because keeping our feet planted lets us focus on every direction at once.

Da Vinci: She's right. One wrong move,and that delicate balance would be lost.

Da Vinci: You're our most vulnerable target here by far, Fujimaru.

Da Vinci: If even one arrow makes it past's game over.

Ganesha: You see? I KNEW shut-ins were the most powerful class around.

Ganesha: We'll have to make ourselves comfortable and settle in for the long haul here. Step one: break out that kotatsu!

Rama: No, by definition, that won't get us anywhere. I'll just have to go out there myself and settle this as quickly as–

Rama: I guess that won't work either. So, we have a bit of a problem...

Lakshmi: ...

Lakshmi: (At this rate, things aren't looking good either way...)

Lakshmi: (I can't afford to be concerned about appearances now. Maybe this is the time to come clean. )

Lakshmi: (But, I can't help but wonder...)

Lakshmi: (What are they hiding? )

Lakshmi: (I know they don't mean me harm, and that they are just as devoted to winning this war as I am. )

Lakshmi: (But, why do I sense such grim determination in their efforts...? )

Asha: [♂ Mister /♀ Miss]...? A-are you guys okay?

Mash: Please stay back, Asha! We're fine, I promise!

Ajai: Damn ulloo! I told you to stay behind me!

Lakshmi: (Right...I should have known. Whatever it is they're not telling me, it doesn't matter. We have more immediate concerns. )

Lakshmi: Your father is right. Both of you should stay back. But I do have one favor to ask.

Lakshmi: There must be a wagon somewhere in this town, or even just a single horse and cart. Would you bring them here?

Mash: Lakshmi?

Ajai: Is there some reason I should listen to you?

Lakshmi: No, there isn't. I am asking a favor. No...Not even that. I'm willing to offer payment in return.

Lakshmi: There's nothing wrong with motivating people with money or goods. I learned that back in that rebellion...

Lakshmi: To be clear, they are the ones who will be paying,not me. Fujimaru, you must have something in the way of food or valuables, do you not?

Fujimaru 1: Well, if you're okay with rations...

Ajai: You have food? ...All right. As long as it's filling, I don't care how it tastes.

Fujimaru 2: Well, if you're okay with the stash of jewels we have on the Border...

Ajai: You have jewels? ...All right. I should be able to sell those for money to buy food.

Ajai: ...I'll be back soon. Come on, Asha.

Asha: O-okay.

Rama: What's all this about?

Lakshmi: I have a plan. A plan that will let us take down that Archer even while he continues to snipe at us.

Mash: Th-that sounds like just what we need right now. What exactly did you have in mind?

Ganesha: Yeah. I don't see what we could do with a horse and cart except use them to charge straight at him.

Ganesha: And that sounds like it'd be...real hard. What if the Archer shoots the driver, or the horse?

Ganesha: And if we keep them safe, that would leave Fujimaru wide open...

Lakshmi: I know that. Unfortunately, it is difficult to explain, but I can say this...

Lakshmi: You will all ride the cart, I will ride the horse, and I will see you to him safely. I promise.

Peperoncino: You're, um, certain about this?

Lakshmi: ...Haha. Don't worry.

Lakshmi: I'll do this just as I've always done things and work just as hard. No, even harder. That way, we'll be sure to get there.

Mash: (She's smiling...Does that mean she really is that confident in her plan...? )

Ajai: How's this?

Lakshmi: That's fine. You can go now. Just leave the horse there.

Asha: B-but miss...

Lakshmi: That goes for you too. No need to worry about me. Just go and hide before you get hit by a stray arrow.

Lakshmi: Good. All right, on my signal, you all get into the cart. I'll get the horse moving once you're all in!

Lakshmi: Don't worry about anything except keeping Fujimaru safe until we get there. Got it?

Mash: Got it!

Lakshmi: Good answer. All right...let's go!

Tell: Oh? So, they came out, huh. Looks like they're planning to ride that horse-drawn cart all the way here.

Tell: 'Course, they must've known I'd pick off the horse first if they tried something like that...

Tell: Well, let's see what they had in mind to deal with that.

Lakshmi: His first bolt will probably be coming any moment now. Keep your guard up.

Mash: I will, but I expect he'll go after the horse first. Or maybe you...

Mash: Please make sure you keep your guard up too–

Lakshmi: ...!

Fujimaru 1: Lakshmi!

Lakshmi: ...I'm fine! It's just my shoulder! No need to slow down!

Tell: The hell? I know I was aiming for the horse. How did I miss!?

Tell: ...I pride myself on being a good hunter. I shouldn't have any problem taking down a domesticated farm animal.

Tell: Let's try that again.

Mash: Oh no! Lakshmi! You've been shot again!

Lakshmi: I'm fine! All you need to worry about is keeping Master safe!

Tell: Whoa, whoa, what the hell? What's going on here?

Tell: The horse kicked up a stone that knocked my arrow off course...

Tell: ...and deflected it into the rider.

Tell: ...This is freaking me out. I don't need to be hitting anything other than what I was aiming at!

Tell: Let's try a different target. I'll use Vāyu's power to aim for the Master five meters off to the side...

Tell: Damn, it happened again. It was a bird this time.

Tell: How does hitting a bird's feather knock my shot off course and into the rider again!?

Tell: What is going on here? Is it a Noble Phantasm? A skill? Some innate trait?

Lakshmi: Gah! Khh...!

Rama: Lakshmi! Hang on! I can deflect those arrows with my–

Lakshmi: Stay there! Don't worry, this is just part of who I am. You being here would only muddy it. Or maybe you'd make it clearer? Hehe.

Mash: Lakshmi...!

Lakshmi: I told you, don't worry. These shots won't kill me;they weren't aimed at me.

Lakshmi: Of course, if one of them does come directly for me,then it'll need to be deflected...but that's a job for my sword and my sword alone!

Tell: (Weird. It doesn't matter if I aim for the horse,the wheels, or the Master. Everything hits the rider. )

Tell: (It's like everything surrounding them is working it make sure I only hit her. )

Tell: (But none of them are enough to kill her. Makes sense, since I wasn't trying to. )

Tell: Okay, then. New plan. We'll just kill you first.

Lakshmi: There! He's started to aim for me directly. I knew he would eventually! That's more like it!

Lakshmi: He certainly earned his fame! I can hardly tell where the shots are coming from, and it's all I can do to deflect them and avoid dying!

Mash: ...!

Lakshmi: Don't make me repeat myself again! I'm not slowing down! Just think about what you're going to do when we get there!

Lakshmi: Ghh! Aagh...!

Lakshmi: You can'!

Lakshmi: (...I've always fought for my country. How could I not? )

Lakshmi: (It was true during the sepoys' rebellion, and it's true now. I wasn't fighting for some greater meaning. )

Lakshmi: (I just had to keep moving forward to protect what I held dear. )

Lakshmi: (So that's what I did, even before I knew what I was doing. I wavered, I even hesitated, but I never stopped! )

Lakshmi: (The meaning can come later. What pushes me forward are the reasons that lie behind me! )

Lakshmi: (I know what lies behind me now isn't my own country. I know it's not my homeland, Jhansi. But...)

Lakshmi: (...they are still people, just like the people of my country were. )

Lakshmi: (What lies behind me, then and now, are people. People with homes...livelihoods...and families! )

Lakshmi: (So I'm not stopping for anything, goddess. Whatever happens to me, and no matter how ugly things get, I can't stop until I get where I need to go! )

Tell: Dammit!

Lakshmi: We're here. To think you never hit your target even once, William Tell. Talk about bad luck.

Tell: Heh. All those arrows fired, and I still couldn't bring you down. Guess you were even more slippery quarry than that scumbag of a Vogt, Gessler.

Mash: We did it, Master! We made contact with the enemy!

Ganesha: You okay, Lakshmi!?

Lakshmi: (Huff, huff...) I'm fine. But, as I said, I'm afraid the rest of you will...have to take it...from here...

Rama: I still don't know how you did that, but we could never have made it here without your help...

Rama: We won't let your efforts go to waste! Let's do this, Master!

Fujimaru 1: His long-range attacks aren't gonna be much help now!

Fujimaru 2: There's no way we're losing a close-range fight!

Fou: Fooou!


Tell: Guh...They're too damn close. I'm in trouble here. Time to get the hell out!

Ganesha: Hey! After all that, you're just gonna run away!? Have you no honoooooor!?

Fujimaru 1: Tell! I thought you fought against tyrannies, not for them!

Mash: That's right. I know your story too.

Mash: You were a brave hero who wanted nothing more than to protect your family!

Tell: ...

Mash: So why are you doing this!?

Fujimaru 2: Tell! I thought you were a good man who cared about his family!

Tell: ...

Mash: That's right. I know your story too.

Mash: You were given an impossible task given by the wicked Vogt that ruled over your town, and you somehow won, all to protect your family!

Mash: You were a great hero who fought for justice and freedom.

Mash: So why are you doing this!?

Tell: ...Heh. I don't know what you're on about.

Tell: I'm just a hunter Servant, bound by contract to do what his Master orders. That's all there is to it.

Tell: It's not my place to decide how this world should be. Woods are woods, as far as I'm concerned.

Lakshmi: Get back he– Ghh!

Peperoncino: Don't bother. You're in no shape to go after him. We got some good hits in; that's enough for now.

Peperoncino: Though it does sting knowing we've now let both him and Asclepius get away.

Holmes: He certainly made a quick getaway. Either he's using the wind god's power, or that was his own innate skill.

Holmes: That aside...Did you notice how outmatched he was by the end? It seems you did quite a number on him.

Holmes: Considering how his initial assault had you pinned down to start, I would say this was a victory well-earned.

Rama: Indeed. And we owe it all to you, Lakshmi Bai. Your plan was more than a little reckless, but I have to admit that it worked.

Rama: Although...I still don't know how all those arrows ended up hitting you.

Ganesha: I was wondering the same thing.

Ganesha: I mean, if any of us were gonna be a human shield, I figured you guys would've made me do it for...obvious reasons.

Ganesha: How'd you do it?

Ganesha: Not that I want to learn how myself! The only thing you'd get from sticking me with arrows is a bunch of lard and hot air leaking out.

Lakshmi: That was...

Lakshmi: inner goddess's power.

Mash: I see...I never knew the goddess Lakshmi had any such ability.

Holmes: ...

Peperoncino: ...

Rama: ...All right, that's enough. I was curious about that, but not overly so.

Rama: Right now, I say we head back to town and rest up,before things get really busy.

Lakshmi: Huh? What do you mean by that?

Ajai: Hey, ulloo.... Teach me how to fight.

Lakshmi: Huh?

Ajai: And not just me. These guys too.

Ajai: Now that we know it's possible to fight back,we've got no choice.

Ajai: You showed us that truth, so now you've gotta help us learn to do it better.

Lakshmi: ...!

Mash: (This is wonderful. They've all chosen to resist the kali of their own accord. )

Mash: (But, that also means...)

Rama: You stood up bravely against the kali,and exposed yourself to unseen arrows.

Rama: You should be proud, Lakshmi. It was not your words that inspired these people to fight back, but your actions.

Ganesha: Oh yeah. You were like a saint or something, the way you charged ahead so recklessly and literally suffered the arrows of misfortune.

Ganesha: I don't blame these guys for being impressed.

Lakshmi: (A saint...? As if that was even possible...)

Lakshmi: ...At any rate, I'm happy to see you all ready and willing to fight.

Peperoncino: The fewer people believe Arjuna's a god, the weaker he'll get. Looks like we just took our first step towards that.

Fujimaru 1: Yeah, that's...great...

Fujimaru 2: We'll have to keep it up then...

Lakshmi: You don't sound very excited about this.

Lakshmi: ...That does it. I think it's time we found somewhere to talk.

Lakshmi: ...All right, out with it. Would you tell me what's going on already?

Lakshmi: What is it you know that I don't?

Lakshmi: Does saving these people have some larger implication I'm unaware of?

Mash: Master...

Fujimaru 1: Okay. I'll tell you everything.

Lakshmi: That...That can't be true!

Goredolf: It is. Once we defeat this Lostbelt's king and cut down its Tree of Emptiness, this version of India will disappear forever.

Goredolf: Along with all of its people.

Fujimaru 2: (...I don't think I can bring myself to tell her just yet. )

Goredolf: Hmph. If you won't explain, then I will.

Goredolf: For a skilled commander like myself to direct his operatives as if they were his own hands, those operatives need to understand the mission.

Goredolf: The fact is, once we defeat this Lostbelt's king and cut down its Tree of Emptiness, this version of India will vanish forever.

Goredolf: Along with all of its people.

Lakshmi: What!?

Goredolf: So, I'm afraid that even if their rebellion is successful...there is no future for them.

Goredolf: The only people who will benefit from our winning this war...are us.

Rama: I see. I had a feeling something like that was going on here...

Lakshmi: Then...even if these people win back their liberty...they are doomed to disappear...?

Lakshmi: And you knew this all along!?

Fujimaru 1: ...

Mash: Lakshmi!

Asha: Oh gosh, oh gosh! You guys really surprised me! Are you fighting? Please don't fight!

Lakshmi: ...

Rama: No...We weren't fighting, exactly.

Asha: Really? Oh good! That's a relief!

Rama: What is it? Is there something you wanted to see us about?

Asha: Well, uh, I just wanted to thank you for saving us. And to give you this!

Asha: You looked like you were hurt pretty badly,so I brought you some bandages and medicine.

Asha: Are you okay, miss?

Lakshmi: ...I-I'm fine. Thank you.

Asha: Huh, you really do look okay now...Maybe I was just seeing things?

Asha: Well anyway, I'm so glad you're okay!

Ganesha: We're the ones who should be thanking you for getting us that horse and stuff. Thanks.

Asha: Hehe!

Lakshmi: ...I'm sorry. I...I need to be alone right now.

Lakshmi: ...

Fujimaru 1: (Got it. )

Mash: Master...?

Fujimaru 1: It's nothing.

Holmes: She is also a Heroic Spirit from Proper Human History. In time, I believe she will understand.

Holmes: But for now, I think it best that we give her some space.

Asha: ?

Fujimaru 1: (Okay, I think this is where she told me to meet her...)

Fujimaru 1: ...!

Fujimaru 1: (She's really staring at me hard...)

Fujimaru 2: (I think...she wants to tell me something...)

Lakshmi: There you are. I'm sorry to impose,but I had to talk to you alone.

Fujimaru 1: (Looks like that girl is gone...)

Fujimaru 2: D-don't worry about it. So what's up?

Lakshmi: I want to ask you something. I think you know what it is.

Lakshmi: I want to know what you think about the people of this world...

Lakshmi: ...and about what's going to happen to them.

Lakshmi: For the moment, I would like to put aside our various titles–Master, Servant, queen, mage, and so on...

Lakshmi: ...and simply ask your opinion, one person to another.

Lakshmi: I want to know your honest thoughts, without worrying about what anyone else might think.

Fujimaru 1: (There are some things I'm still not sure about, even now. But...)

Fujimaru 2: (Honestly, I still don't have everything figured out. But...)

Fujimaru 1: (For now, I'm just going to tell her what I really think. )

Fujimaru 2: (For now, I'm just going to tell her what I'm thinking as best I can. )

Lakshmi: ...I see.

Lakshmi: So, in the end...this is the only path available to you.

Lakshmi: Outside of this India, Proper Human History...Earth itself has been almost completely destroyed.

Lakshmi: And to save it, you have no choice but to cut down these Trees of Emptiness...

Fujimaru 1: ...Yes. That's what I'm fighting for.

Lakshmi: ...You remind me of myself, back during the rebellion.

Fujimaru 1: You mean, the one in India from your time...?

Lakshmi: Back then, I never thought about what the future might hold.

Lakshmi: There were only things I had to do, and only one path available to me: the path of fighting to protect my homeland. So that's what I did.

Lakshmi: I didn't have some larger plan in mind, like driving every last one of the British out of India, or destroying Britain itself...

Lakshmi: The truth is, I never stopped to think about what the future might hold...

Lakshmi: ...though it should have been obvious that, win or lose, there would be more to be done once the war was over.

Lakshmi: Then again, I suppose my options were so limited,and the path I had to walk so difficult...

Lakshmi: ...that I didn't have the luxury of thinking about anything besides what was right in front of me.

Lakshmi: Still, regardless of what the future might hold...

Lakshmi: ...if I know the path I'm taking is the right one,and I know I have to go down it...

Lakshmi: ...then that's exactly what I'll do. I think, deep down, that's just who I am.

Fujimaru 1: ...?

Lakshmi: What I'm trying to say is, I'm in no position to judge anyone for the hard choices they have to make under unprecedented circumstances.

Lakshmi: At any rate, I'm glad you told me what you really think.

Lakshmi: Just knowing that you do feel bad for the people in these Lostbelts is something of a relief.

Fujimaru 1: So what are you going to do now?

Lakshmi: I...still don't like this.

Lakshmi: But, I also have no intention of letting this false god continue to have his way with these people.

Lakshmi: We may ultimately only be putting this problem off until later...but right now, the only way to protect them is to keep doing what I've been doing.

Lakshmi: So that's what I'm going to do.

Fujimaru 1: I hope this means you'll keep helping us.

Lakshmi: ...Heh. You're an odd one, aren't you? Not many people could say something like that so readily.

Lakshmi: You know, I have to ask. Why did you come here when I asked you to?

Lakshmi: Didn't it occur to you that I might decide to kill you in order to keep these people safe?


You give it some thought, and say...

Narration: felt the same way she did.

Lakshmi: ?


You go on, ignoring her perplexed expression.


You say that...


...just as she called you here to talk to you person to person...

Narration: also felt like you had a responsibility to do the same for her.

Lakshmi: ...

Lakshmi: Oh, right. There's one more thing I wanted to ask you.

Lakshmi: This isn't to judge or condemn you. I just want to make sure I understand.

Lakshmi: Is it true that you've erased the people in three other Lostbelts already?

Fujimaru 1: ...Yes. It is.

Lakshmi: (What an expression. )

Lakshmi: (I can tell [♂ he's /♀ she's] not lying, or gone mad with power. Neither is [♂ he /♀ she] ignorant of what [♂ he's /♀ she's] done,willfully or otherwise. )

Lakshmi: (This perfectly ordinary human child simply knows what [♂ he /♀ she] has done, and accepted it as best [♂ he /♀ she] can. )

Lakshmi: All right. That's all I had to say. I'm sorry for keeping you up so late.

Lakshmi: I said that you and I have some things in common, and you've shown me that we have no choice but to walk the same path.

Lakshmi: So, for the time being, nothing needs to change. I will continue to fight this false god alongside you.

Lakshmi: We may disagree on some things, but right now,that shared goal is all that matters.

Lakshmi: You may treat me the same as that Peperoncino person. If you think it best to be wary of me, or to get rid of me...then you're free to do so.

Fujimaru 1: Don't worry, I trust you. Thanks.

Lakshmi: (...I wonder...Could you still say that if you knew my ugly secret...? )

Section 13: The Price of Loss/Divine Judgment Looming

Fujimaru 1: How's it going?

Rama: Not bad. Many of them are in good shape thanks to farming and hunting.

Rama: I doubt I can train them each to kill kali alone,but I am sure I can teach them to survive in battle!

Rama: All right, it's time for lunch! Just make sure none of you have too much to eat!

Asha: Here's your lunch, Father!

Ajai: ...Thanks.

Asha: Guess what? I helped make it today! Auntie even said I did a great job! Isn't that great!?

Ajai: ...Sure.

Asha: Also, um...You know how the anniversary of my birth is coming up soon...?

Ajai: ...

Asha: N-never mind, it's nothing! See you later!

Asha: Oh, it's you! Hi, guys!

Mash: Hi, Asha. You brought your father his lunch? That's so responsible of you.

Asha: Hehe.

Fujimaru 1: How are things in town?

Asha: Really different! It's so surprising! My father's spending a lot more time here now.

Asha: It feels really lively, too...though,in other places, it's really, um, quiet...

Peperoncino: It looks like the town has been split cleanly in half.

Peperoncino: There are more people who support fighting back against the kali now, but not everyone has joined in.

Peperoncino: On the one side, we have the people from Dival,along with the people they inspired to join them...

Peperoncino: ...and on the other, there are the people who are still holding on to their old beliefs...

Ganesha: I've noticed a lot of people watching from a distance and whispering among themselves. Who knows what they might try to pull.

Mash: There are going to be even more kali as the yuga cycle goes on.

Mash: I'd like to think that more people will decide to join us once they see us fighting...

Peperoncino: Our ultimate goal is to reduce Arjuna's power by getting people to realize how imperfect and unnecessary of a god he is.

Peperoncino: So I certainly hope a bunch more decide to join us,or we'll be in big trouble.

Peperoncino: We should be hoping to win over the rest of this town, then keep that momentum to win over other people here.

Lakshmi: We can't devote all our time to convincing those holding out when we also need to train those who have joined us.

Lakshmi: Whatever else may happen, we can't let anyone else be killed as long as we're in a position to help.

Ganesha: Looks like you're pretty much over it then, huh?

Lakshmi: ...I don't know about that. But I do know what it is I need to be doing right now.

Lakshmi: What's more, I know now that there's something else I need to keep my eye on.

Lakshmi: There is someone already walking the path I need to follow.

Lakshmi: I may not fully grasp it, but I understand well enough to know that I no longer have the option of hedging my bets.

Fujimaru 1: (Is she looking at me...? )

Meunière: Hold up! I think you're going to have to postpone the training for now!

Meunière: I'm seeing a number of signals making their way towards the town...Looks like more kali!

Holmes: It would seem they're all warmed up and raring to go, now that it's the final day of the Dvāpara Yuga. Here they come!

Rama: All right, everyone who's ready to fight, prepare for battle! But remember, your ultimate goal is to survive. Don't try to be a hero!

Mash: We'll be handling the front line, so there shouldn't be any issue with them joining us.

Mash: Preparing Ortinax for immediate combat...All systems green!

Mash: I'll try to draw as many of them towards me as I can. Awaiting your orders, Master!


A:Koyanskaya: Hmmm, I see. So they're going after faith...the Achilles' heel of every god that shows themselves before mortals.

A:Koyanskaya: How delightfully cold-blooded. It could be just the surgical strike they need.

A:Koyanskaya: Even if they don't have time to pull it off,it's certainly making things more interesting!

A:Koyanskaya: A god that nobody believes in is little more than a doomsday device, and one even ordinary people can destroy at that.

A:Koyanskaya: Still, I have to wonder...

A:Koyanskaya: Are they aware that everything they're doing may, ironically, speed up the whole paradise without people living here?

Aśvatthāman: ...There you are. Ugh, seeing you pisses me off.

A:Koyanskaya: Oh, hello, Aśvatthāman. What brings you here?

Aśvatthāman: You know why I'm here, dammit. I'm here to clean up your mess.

Aśvatthāman: You've been taking things Arjuna erased along with their owners at the end of the Kali Yuga...

Aśvatthāman: ...and putting them back to remind other humans that they existed, haven't you?

Koyanskaya: I have. What about it?

Koyanskaya: I was under the impression that I was doing exactly what your god would want me to.

Koyanskaya: There's nothing wrong with rooting out people holding on to unnecessary attachments to their defective past lives.

Koyanskaya: Granted, I won't deny I enjoy the look of despair they get when they realize they can't even remember who they lost...

Koyanskaya: But the point is, I'm helping to find undesirables so we can end the yuga cycles ahead of schedule.

Aśvatthāman: I don't care how you get your kicks, but it's hard not to be pissed at how much more work you're making for me.

Aśvatthāman: It'd be one thing if you were just defectively getting in the way, but now that you're making this much trouble for us, I was told to handle you directly.

Koyanskaya: Huh? Juuust a minute. Explain to me how my work is being anything less than helpful!

Koyanskaya: The particulars aside, it should be exactly in line with what Arjuna wants!

Koyanskaya: Your thickheaded god who's so drunk on his Divinities that he's forgotten what human feelings are SHOULD be complimenting me like:

Koyanskaya: “What an incredibly capable woman you are! You're the goddess I've been searching for my whole life! ”

Aśvatthāman: Your Alter Ego friend told Arjuna all about how your actions are directly fueling the resistance movement that has been gaining traction.

Aśvatthāman: That's really the one bit where I sympathize with you. It sucks having your friends sell you out.

Koyanskaya: ...

Koyanskaya: Now I see what's going on here. So that's how the monk wants to play this.

Koyanskaya: What an ugly, petty man. That's the difference he'll never make up between him and the other onmyouji.

Koyanskaya: Putting aside the question of whether it's more trouble to deal with an arrogant bastard who'd knowingly keep a deadly parasite around just because he can...

Koyanskaya: ...or a rotten parasite himself who will try to murder you outright in an ambush...

Koyanskaya: A mere Servant, thinking he can kill me? The idea is so infuriating it's almost depressing.

Koyanskaya: He calls himself a destroyer, just because he was able to take out the other gods and order around a few regent Servants? Ridiculous.

Koyanskaya: I would never lay down and die for a being who can't even truly become a pure destroyer of worlds, let alone one of his pathetic lackeys.

Koyanskaya: That emperor who embodied all of humanity was one thing, but I can destroy a mere warrior like you with just a few bites!

Aśvatthāman: ...Well, whadda ya know. Guess you've got a bit of rage in you yourself.

Aśvatthāman: Fine by me! Go ahead and get as mad as you want! I'm pretty furious that I've gotta put an end to someone I have no desire to kill!

Aśvatthāman: As your friend must have put it, Arjuna's all we need to end this world...There's no room for a walking disaster like you here!


Mash: It's the Kali Yuga again. I hope we can escape in the Border with more room to spare this time.

Rama: Agreed. But I expect things will be okay.

Rama: This town knows how to do more than just pray now. We will help them all we can, then make our escape when the time is right.

Rama: They should be more than capable of surviving until the next yuga cycle begins by then.

Ganesha: Oho, speaking of kali...Here comes another wave now. But I'm sure it'll be fine. Like you said, these people have all been training–

Peperoncino: Wait. Something's not right.

Fujimaru 1: What are those kali doing?

Fujimaru 2: Are those kali swarming together...?

Ganesha: What the hecking heck? They just merged into a new giant kali!

Man: What the hell is that!? I've never seen a kali like that before!

Woman: Why is this happening!? Are they making themselves stronger because we decided to fight back...?

Lakshmi: ...

Ajai: ...Stay back, Asha.

Asha: O-okay...Be careful, Father...

Rama: This isn't good. We only taught these people how to handle normal kali. That giant one is in a whole other league!

Rama: It's a shame we won't be able to help them with the other kali...

Rama: ...but we're the only ones here who can handle that giant. Let's go!


Rama: There, it's dead! How are the people doing!?

Ajai: Hrn!

Ajai: There's nothing more I can do. Let's get out of here.

Asha: O-okay!

Asha: ...? Father, over there!

Prakash: Aaah! Please, h-help me...My leg got stuck in the rubble!

Prakash: Please, god. I'll pray to you as much as you like, I promise...!

Ajai: ...

Ajai: ...Goddamn ulloo!

Prakash: Th-this isn't my fault...I-I know! This is all the god's will...It has to be...

Ajai: Gnnh...

Asha: Father! Fatheeer!

Ajai: ...Don't cry. It's no big deal. I'll just have to get used to limping for a while.

Ajai: No point in me trying to fight anymore. Lets go find a place to hide.

Asha: Hold onto me, Father! I'll help you walk!

Ajai: ...

Asha: Are you okay? Does your leg hurt?

Ajai: ...You've really grown up, haven't you.

Asha: Huh? Well sure I have.

Ajai: I guess that makes sense, seeing how you turn four thousand days old tomorrow. We'll have to celebrate...

Asha: (He remembered! )


Narration: ...Once again, I dream as I close my eyes.

Narration: I dream of an impossibly tragic war...

Narration: ...taking place for impossibly meaningless reasons.

Narration: A pointless war that wiped an entire clan out of existence.

Narration: A war that swallowed the land whole, claiming untold numbers of lives.

Narration: A war that trampled the souls of countless brave warriors underfoot.

Narration: Uttara, son of Virata, died. His brother, Shveta, was killed by Bhishma.

Narration: Bhima killed the King of Kalinga. Virata's eldest son, Shankha, also died.

Narration: All one hundred of the princes died, one after the other.... Iravan was killed as well.

Narration: I killed Bhishma with Shikhandi's help.... Abhimanyu was also killed.

Narration: So many dead. So many killed. Death and killing. Killing and death. Over, and over, and over.

Narration: I saw countless friends and allies die. I saw countless enemies and foes die.

Narration: Once all my thoughts had passed me by...and all my emotions had been drained out of me...

Narration: ...I was left with only one question.

Narration: Why?

???: Hey...Hey!

Asclepius: Good, you're finally awake. I didn't know you slept too.

Asclepius: I know this is short notice, but I need a new power.

God Arjuna: ...?

Asclepius: It's like I told you in my report. Yama's power wasn't helpful at all.

Asclepius: Come to think of it, it's probably because he's similar to Hades. I may have spent my time hating him without realizing it.

Asclepius: So I need you to lend me another Divinity. Yama alone isn't going to cut it.

Asclepius: Of course, this would be strictly to help me with my research...and to help me uphold the laws of this just world.

Asclepius: So you can understand that my request is completely justified, right?

God Arjuna: ...A trivial all things are...


Asclepius: Dammit, I didn't expect him to give me another job as part of the package.

Asclepius: ...Oh well, I guess I can't really focus on my research until they're taken care of, anyway.

Tell: Does that mean I can trust you to deal with them?

Tell: I know I brought some sacred beasts along with me, but I can't let the kali run rampant either.

Tell: Part of our job is making sure the judgments are handled impartially. Any imbalances need to be corrected.

Tell: Especially seeing how there's a whole new giant kali I've never seen before now. Maybe he's the alpha or something?

Asclepius: Suit yourself. You're staying outside the town, right? It's none of my business what you choose to point your crossbow at.

Tell: Hehe. Actually, I'm tired of picking targets off at long range.

Tell: It feels like it dulls my instincts, you know? I just can't seem to get in my usual hunter mood that way.

Tell: I've remembered that taking shots from extreme distance isn't my thing. I'd much rather stay at a comfortable hundred paces or so.

Asclepius: Are you sure those aren't the aftereffects speaking?

Tell: Huh?

Asclepius: I may have perfectly healed your physical injuries thanks to my medical expertise and his abundant magical energy...

Asclepius: ...but even I can't help with your mental ones.

Asclepius: The memory of your precious arrows failing to find their targets...

Asclepius: The abject defeat you suffered as an Archer unable to land a single shot on your intended target...

Asclepius: Those are the kind of things that leave a deep, permanent mark on your Spirit Origin. Much as I hate to admit it, even I can't cure that.

Tell: I don't know...I've never been an especially sensitive hunter. I just think sticking to my preferred range'll make things easier for me.

Tell: At any rate, I'll take care of the kali in town and come back you up when I'm done.

Asclepius: Honestly, now that I have the power of two gods to work with, you hardly need to bother.

Asclepius: This is like being able to do two different operations simultaneously. I can handle even the most difficult patients and hum at the same time now.

Tell: By the way...there's something I've been wondering for a while now.

Asclepius: What is it?

Tell: It's nothing major, mind you. I was just curious why I was the last Lōkapāla summoned, is all.

Tell: He already had Nezha, the son of the great Chinese hero Li Jing, and you, the legendary god of medicine from Greek mythology.

Tell: Not to mention Aśvatthāman, the heroic half-incarnation of Shiva from the Mahabharata, was here even before you two.

Tell: So with all those amazing mythical figures around...why would he pick an ordinary guy like me as his final Lōkapāla?

Asclepius: Beats me. Who knows what a god that pure could be thinking.

Asclepius: Besides, we don't even know if he summoned you on purpose. You'd have to ask him or the Alter Ego about that.

Asclepius: There is every chance that you were only summoned by sheer coincidence. Don't worry about it.

Tell: Yeah, you're right. You're absolutely right. But, in case it wasn't a coincidence...

Tell: ...there was just something about your posture that told me now might be a good time to think about it.

Asclepius: My posture? What are you talking about?

Tell: You know, I don't even know myself. I guess it's just hunter's intuition.

Rama: There really are a lot more of them on Kali Yuga. And that's not all...

Ganesha: Sacred beasts!

Lakshmi: Yes. And they seem to be even more worked up than usual. Does this mean...

Asclepius: Of course it means one of us will show up, though not the same one as last time. But, as I have already been compensated, I suppose I can make a house call.

Fujimaru 1: Asclepius!

Fujimaru 2: You' doctor guy!

Da Vinci: That's Asclepius! I know Greek heroes have difficult names, but you've at least got to try!

Asclepius: Arjuna's quite generous as gods go. All I had to do was ask, and he gave me a new Divinity.

Mash: A new Divinity!?

Ganesha: That's the same one you were using before!

Asclepius: And now...there's this.

Asclepius: I still have issues with the idea of gods,but at least this one isn't Greek.

Asclepius: If it'll help me keep making progress,I won't hesitate to use whatever I can.

Ganesha: Is that...water?

Peperoncino: Water...Oh no. He's got Varuna, the god of water! That one might be an even better fit for him than Yama!

Peperoncino: Varuna was the Regent of the West...and was famous for using medical science to save people!

Lakshmi: He's using that water to enhance the sacred beasts' strength. It must have some sort of medicinal properties.

Ganesha: Oh, great. So he's doping his attack beast-things with divine steroid water.

Ganesha: I bet it's going to give them some completely broken regen ability or something...This is going to be a huge pain in the ass, I can tell already!

Ganesha: Look, I enjoy a brutally difficult grind fest as much as the next gamer, but at some point it gets too hard to even bother with!

Rama: Stop whining!

Rama: The people of this town have finally found the will to fight back. I'm not going to let these things ruin that!

Rama: ...Not on my watch.

Rama: We need to prove that neither this false god, nor his underlings, are invincible. They can be–MUST be defeated.

Rama: We're the ones who showed them this path, and started them along it. Now we have to show them what lies at its end!

Holmes: Even if he does have a new Divinity at his disposal now, it's still no more than a tool...something more or less tacked-on, to use the modern parlance.

Holmes: Even if this new Divinity does pertain to healing, the damage to Asclepius's own Spirit Origin is not the sort that can be recovered from in a day.

Holmes: Not when Asclepius himself has Divinity of his own.

Holmes: In brief, it is eminently possible that he has not recovered from damage he sustained in your last battle. That could be just the advantage you need.

Holmes: I wish I could give you some more helpful instructions,but I'm afraid that's all I've got this time.

Mash: That's more than enough, Holmes.

Mash: Master, we're up against Asclepius and his two Divinities. I know he's a formidable enemy, but...

Fujimaru 1: Yeah. I can't say why, but I know we can take him!

Fujimaru 2: We're still gonna win!

Fou: Fooou!

Asclepius: You're welcome to try, foolish patients.

Asclepius: At this point, I've both conquered death and gained the power to heal people with godlike power, despite not being a god myself. I've never been more capable!

Asclepius: Maybe now, I can cure that idiocy of yours just as well as I can everything else!


Asclepius: What's wrong, sacred beasts!? I know you can keep going! Come on, get up! I'll keep healing you!

Asclepius: Ghh...!?

Asclepius: What's going...Guh!

Holmes: In short, you are neither a Pseudo-Servant in a special vessel...

Holmes: ...nor a naturally occurring Divine Spirit amalgamation. That made all the difference.

Mash: ...I remember what happened with Nezha.

Peperoncino: Nezha intentionally chose to overload her Spirit Origin, but you've done a decent job of it without even trying.

Peperoncino: Not only are you bearing the brunt of two Divinities in a single Servant body...

Peperoncino: ...but one of them is boosting your already perfect healing abilities well beyond their limits.

Peperoncino: You've obviously been pushing yourself waaay too hard.

Peperoncino: And since you don't have some special background that lets you handle that kind of load, like Arjuna does...this was only ever going to end with you destroying yourself.

Peperoncino: I'm pretty sure Arjuna knew that too.

Asclepius: What!? That can't be right! Why would he do something like–

God Arjuna: ...A trivial all things are...

Asclepius: Dammit...So that's what he meant. He didn't care what might happen to me. I'm has completely inconsequential to him as anything else!

Asclepius: That damn fool didn't appreciate the value of medicine any more than the other idiot gods did!

Tell: ...there was just something about your posture that told me now might be a good time to think about it.

Asclepius: ...I see. So that's what he was going on about.

Asclepius: Maybe I have been the idiot all this time...

Rama: It's ironic, Asclepius. You sought a world where one would never die just for excelling.

Rama: And now, you've excelled so much in your pursuit of power that you brought about your own death.

Asclepius: Tch. I can't believe I forgot something so fundamental...Even medicine can be harmful in excess.

Asclepius: I neglected to walk that line, and now I'm paying the price. What an embarrassing mistake.

Asclepius: ...Speaking of things I forgot...

Asclepius: Hey. Before I go, just tell me one thing. Do I seem that strange to you?

Asclepius: All I want is to advance medicine for the good of all mankind. Women, children, the elderly...Everyone should be able to benefit from getting the treatment they need.

Asclepius: All I want is a world where you won't be an outcast just for excelling. Excellence shouldn't be a crime.

Mash: ...You're not wrong. There's nothing strange about your stance.

Mash: I think any hero would feel much the same as you do.

Mash: But, even so...I'm not quite sure how to describe this, but...

Ganesha: You don't get to talk about that kinda thing when you're working for the jerks running this world. Least, that's how it feels to me.

Ganesha: 'Course, my feelings are also Ganesha's feelings right now, so they do carry plenty of divine weight.

Asclepius: The more a god thinks such things without any reason, the worse that is, huh...Hmm...That's possible. Maybe that lack of self-awareness is what I need to treat...

Rama: We won. Though I don't know what he kept muttering about even as he disappeared...What an odd man.

Mash: ...Asclepius's Spirit Origin has completely vanished. We've beaten him.

Mash: We did it, Master!

Fou: Fou fooou!

Tell: Ah damn, they got him, huh.

Tell: Well, I've just wrapped things up with the kali here. Guess I may as well go and avenge him.


Asha: Father fell asleep after I took him to the healer...That means he'll be okay, right...?

Asha: I wonder if...there's something I can do to help...

Man: You want to help? I don't know, you're still just a child...We can't give you a sword, and there aren't any other weapons you could use safely...

Woman: You can pray, of course! Go on, close your eyes and pray as hard as you can for our god to help!

Asha: Nnn...

Mash: Look out, Master! It's William Tell!

Rama: Oh? So you're coming to face us yourself this time?

Tell: Actually, that's about the distance I prefer to operate from. Besides, this is the climax of the hunt.

Tell: I can't just pass up a chance like this,when my quarry's already weak and exhausted.

Tell: A hunter doesn't feel bad about bringing down their prey. We feel accomplished.

Holmes: We are in a difficult position, having fought so many kali and Asclepius. I would much rather we had time to recover before our next showdown with William Tell.

Tell: I'm sure you'd like that, but the thing about hunters is that we don't let our quarry escape.

Tell: Traps, wind, climate, scents, bait...When we decide to bring down a target, we make sure to use whatever it takes.

Tell: And if we let a wounded animal get away,well...there's no greater shame than that.

Tell: When that happens, we just have to accept it's god's will, and resign ourselves to going to bed with an empty stomach.

Fujimaru 1: Looks like we have no choice but to fight!

Fujimaru 2: Looks like he's not gonna let us get away!

Mash: Right. We'll just have to settle things here and now, Master!

Holmes: If he has yet to fully recover from the last battle, you should still have a chance, though it won't be an easy fight by any means. Hang in there!

Peperoncino: Well, at least we don't have to worry about him sniping at us from extreme range now...

Peperoncino: ...but he can still control the wind as he likes thanks to Vāyu.

Peperoncino: Keep your guard up, Fujimaru. There's no telling how he'll try shooting his arrows at us next!


Ganesha: Dammit! None of my attacks are landing!

Peperoncino: Every time I think we have him, he slips out of reach again! He's just too damn good at controlling the positioning of this fight!

Mash: I can't read his arrows' trajectory! It's taking everything I have just to defend against them!

Lakshmi: He must be using the wind god's power to control their flight path. We can't even tell where he's firing from.

Rama: This must be what it is like to be a cornered animal,but we can't let him bring us down.

Rama: It bears asking, I think...Can you draw his fire toward you like you did before?

Lakshmi: I don't think so. The situation is too different.

Lakshmi: (At this point, there's no way I could reverse-concentrate all the different possibilities, no matter how hard I pushed the goddess's Divine Core...)

Rama: I see. I'm not sure why that is,but I'm glad to hear it all the same.

Rama: At least now, we won't have to rely on a cowardly strategy where you end up hurt...

Rama: ...and all I can do is stand back and watch,angry at myself for being so helpless.

Lakshmi: There you go again...

Man: Hang on, Lady Lakshmi! I'll help you!

Lakshmi: Stop! That won't work on him! Any non-Mystic attacks will just–

Man: Argh...

Tell: Damn, sorry about that. I wasn't ordered to hurt any civilians...

Tell: ...but I couldn't help the reflex to return fire when he shot at me.

Tell: I have to say though, that's pretty impressive for a homemade crossbow.

Tell: Even so, you shouldn't go around firing it at a real hunter.

Rama: Dammit! There has to be some way we can defeat him!


Narration: As I kept walking...I got more and more anxious.

Narration: What if...What if Father ends up dying?

Narration: He remembered my birth anniversary and everything. He said he would celebrate it with me.

Narration: And, for just an instant...I'm pretty sure he even patted my head earlier.

Narration: What do I do? How can I make sure everyone ends up happy?

Narration: Is there any way for my father to get better, the kali to go away, and all of us to go on to the next yuga together?

Narration: ...Then I remembered the nice travelers. The ones who seem like gods, but aren't.

Narration: If the only thing I can do is pray, I'd rather pray to them. Besides, they know all sorts of things.

Narration: Maybe they'll even know how to fix my father's injury.

Narration: I'll go look for them.

Asha: ...?

Narration: I didn't know what was going on, but I could tell that the travelers were in trouble.

Narration: It's really surprising,but I can't just stand around in shock.

Narration: The man attacking the travelers must be one of the bad gods someone once told me about.

Narration: Honestly, I still don't know what the difference is between good gods and bad gods.

Narration: But...I definitely don't want the travelers to die.

Narration: ...I have to do something.

Man: Argh...

Narration: Something fell to the ground in front of me.

Narration: ...I know what this is. I saw the grown-ups practicing with them. You just squeeze this part, and it shoots an arrow!

Narration: Could I use this to help?

Narration: Maybe, if I can help the nice travelers,they can help my father?

Mash: Huh!? Is that–

Mash: Oh no! Asha, stop!

Tell: Hmm? Someone else foolish enough to shoot at a seasoned hunter? Time to show them what happens when...

Tell: (Huh!? I can't pull the trigger...)

Fujimaru 1: Stop! You can't shoot a child!

Fujimaru 2: What are you doing!? Didn't you fight to protect children!?

Ganesha: Yeah! We all know your story!

Ganesha: Come on, William, don't you remember your son?

Ganesha: Don't you remember how you had to shoot that apple off his head to save him from that jerkwad of a Vogt!?

Ganesha: Listen, I'm a haaardcore gamer, so I may not know much outside of my wheelhouse, but I know this:

Ganesha: Shooting a kid is the one thing William Tell should never, ever do!

Tell: Huh? My...son?

Tell: ...What are you talking about...?

Tell: Nnn...?

Peperoncino: (I can't believe it...His memories must have been deemed useless and erased! )

Ganesha: I-I don't know what's going on, but at least he finally stopped moving around! Now's our chance! Don't worry about Asha! My impressive girth can function as an even more impressive meat shield!

Rama: This is the opportunity we've been waiting for! Come on, Master! It's time to finish this!


Tell: Khh...

Rama: You failed to shoot the quarry you were hunting–our Master–and you almost shot a child instead.

Rama: What a shame. You are no longer William Tell,the heroic Archer engraved in the Throne of Heroes.

Rama: You are nothing more than an ordinary hunter at the mercy of a god.

Rama: Begone, William Tell, before you are past redemption!

Tell: Ghh...Arghhh!

Peperoncino: (What an awful fate, having only your “defective” memories erased...)

Peperoncino: (I don't even want to think about what I'd be like if that had happened to me. )

Lakshmi: This battle isn't over just yet! Finish him!

Rama: I'm well aware!

Rama: Huh!?

???: Ugh...This really pisses me off.

Aśvatthāman: I'm still not done with my last job,but I couldn't just ignore all this crap.

Aśvatthāman: Dammit all, it makes me real angry that you guys had the bad luck to be here when you have nothing to do with the beast I was chasing!

Section 14: Those Who Laugh During the End of Yuga

Peperoncino: Aśvatthāman! Of all the times for him to show up!

Holmes: Indeed, I was just about to remind you. I assume none of you have forgotten what day it is.

Holmes: Today is the Kali Yuga, when the entire world is unmade and recreated.

Holmes: If we are to safely avoid its effects, I might suggest that you begin your retreat toward the Border. Alacrity would be advisable.

Lakshmi: Can't you see what we're dealing with here, detective? We can't possibly turn our backs on this opponent.

Ganesha: Dammit, it's just been one thing after another!

Ganesha: Oh, I almost forgot. What're you doing here, Asha? Where's your dad?

Asha: He...He hurt his leg,and he's at the healer's right now...

Ganesha: Gotcha...That sounds serious, but right now, you've gotta get outta here and hide, Asha!

Asha: O-okay...

Mash: Aśvatthāman is bound to come after us if we try to run away.

Mash: Since we destroyed the giant kali, the townspeople should be able to look after themselves.

Mash: So, I think the best thing we could do now is try to make a break for it.

Rama: There are two problems with that idea. First, Aśvatthāman is a powerful Servant.

Rama: With all of us so exhausted, merely escaping him isn't going to be easy.

Rama: If we're not careful, he'll end up mowing us down the moment we turn our backs on him.

Rama: And second, I'd really like to finish Tell off while we have the chance.

Rama: We need to eliminate him if we're going to defeat Arjuna, and we may never get another chance like this again!

Ganesha: Yeah, but...What about, you know, our lives? Shouldn't surviving be our first priority?

Ganesha: I mean, even if we do manage to take him down, what's the point if we all end up dead 'cause we failed to get away?

Rama: I know. I know, but...! Grr, dammit!


Lakshmi: Tch, just what we needed.

Aśvatthāman: You awake now? Good, then you can help me take care of these guys. Especially since you were supposed to–

Aśvatthāman: What the!?

Tell: (Huff...Huff...) Nope, I just can't seem to remember anything from my old life.

Tell: But...I do remember there was something from it I was forced to forget.

Tell: That's right...I know there was something real important to me...something I don't have anymore.

Tell: And I know you and that god were the ones who took it!

Mash: Are they falling out with each other!? No, wait. It looks like...

Peperoncino: It looks like William Tell was never a complete Lōkapāla to begin with.

Peperoncino: At any rate, now's our chance to run for it! Let's get out of here!

Fou: Fo fooou!

Fujimaru 1: Okay, let's go, everyone! But keep an eye out in case anyone comes after us!

Aśvatthāman: Wha...!? Hey, get back here, dammit! Oh, now I am REALLY PISSED!!! You're gonna pay for that, old ma–

Aśvatthāman: He's gone too. Guess he must've used Vāyu's power to make an escape. I doubt he'll last long with those wounds if he pushes himself too hard, but still...Dammit!

Aśvatthāman: Well, if I can only go after one of 'em...might as well stick to the ones I can see.

Mash: Aśvatthāman is coming after us! I was afraid this might happen!

Rama: Keep running! I'll hold him off at the rear!

Rama: I know about his amazing regenerative abilities. They practically make him immortal.

Rama: I may not be able to defeat him now, but I would at least like to stop him from coming after us.

Rama: Of course, since he'll recover from most damage as soon as we inflict it on him, I'll probably have to cut off both his legs to do even that.

Rama: Dammit, that's just as much work as defeating him! Especially while trying to make an escape at the same time!

Rama: Hmm...?

Aśvatthāman: Ghh...Of all the...stupid times!

Aśvatthāman: That damn...conceptual arrow must've triggered it...! Ghh...Aaaaaahhh!

Rama: Now he's writhing around on the ground and sweating like a pig...What's going on? It looks like...he's in pain?

Rama: I don't know what's going on, but I'm not about to look this particular gift horse in the mouth! Let's get out of here while we can!

Aśvatthāman: Khh, guh...Dammit...Now I'm...really pissed...!

Lakshmi: Now that they know about me, I'm sure the false god won't hesitate to erase me with everything else he doesn't want in the world.

Lakshmi: You're certain that I can avoid the cataclysm as long as I'm on board your ship, yes?

Da Vinci: Absolutely! ...Speaking of which, it looks like Arjuna's started to charge up his Noble Phantasm, right on schedule!

God Arjuna: ...

Holmes: Confirming our distance from Arjuna now...Good, we should be safe here.

Holmes: The one thing we must avoid at all costs is a direct attack on the Border.

Holmes: We can't escape to Void Space without a vehicle capable of a Zero Sail, after all.

Mash: We're only a few hundred meters away from the rendezvous. It looks like we won't have any trouble reaching it in time.

Peperoncino: I can hear the Border's engine now! Ahh, home sweet home!

Goredolf: Now don't start that! This is NOT your home, dammit!

Ganesha: All that aside, I still kinda wonder why Aśvatthāman stopped chasing us.

Rama: I don't think he stopped so much as he–

Meunière: Good, I've got a visual on your position! We'll get ready for the Zero Sail as soon as we rendezvous!

Meunière: Wait...Huh!? Hold up! Hold everything!

Da Vinci: What is it, Meunière!? If this is about taking a bathroom break, you should've thought of that before we left!

Meunière: What? No! There's a Servant right next to the rendezvous point!

Goredolf: What!? Did one of them come after us!? This is terrible! What if they attack the Border!?

Holmes: No...We need not worry about that. Based on these readings I'm seeing, the answer is plain to see.

Holmes: They're wounded.

Holmes: This Servant has clearly been so gravely injured that they are no longer able to move.

Holmes: Furthermore...

Goredolf: F-furthermore?

Holmes: is a Servant we are all familiar with, Director Goredolf. Though we are decidedly not on friendly terms, unfortunately...

Holmes: Fujimaru and [♂ his /♀ her] team should be coming up on her shortly. For the moment, I suggest we wait to see what happens.

Holmes: Perhaps then, we will be able to determine what brought her here...

Goredolf: Wat.


Koyanskaya: That emperor who embodied all of humanity was one thing, but I can destroy a mere warrior like you with just a few bites!

Koyanskaya: Alas, my shortsighted–I mean, lovely bark turned out to be worse than my bite...Now I see what they mean when they say the brightest stars burn out the quickest...

Koyanskaya: That locally sourced Lōkapāla is on a whole different level. He must be the most powerful Servant in this Lostbelt, excepting Arjuna.

Koyanskaya: And if that weren't enough, he even had some powerful holy sutras equipped, no doubt thanks to that damn monk...

Koyanskaya: I can't break out my other tails here in this India. That would put me too close to my original for comfort.

Koyanskaya: My goal is to become an entirely new nine-tailed beast, after all. I refuse to be part of obsolete folklore.

Koyanskaya: Oh well, at least I was able to punch that angry meathead's stupid front teeth down his stupid throat before I made my escape! Ahh, that felt good!

Koyanskaya: All I have to worry about now...

Koyanskaya: that god's monstrous power.

Koyanskaya: Now that I've been marked as an undesirable, I can't afford to get caught in it. And try as I might to leave...

Koyanskaya: (Sigh) It isn't just those damn sutras holding me back. If only I hadn't taken that side trip to South America...

Koyanskaya: At any rate, it looks like I won't be able to manifest in any other region until I can get rid of this “virtue. ”

Koyanskaya: In which case...

Koyanskaya: Well, any port in a storm. Like I always say,this world is all about give and take.

Koyanskaya: If I have to hitch a ride to avoid getting wiped out of existence, then so be it.

Holmes: I believe...she's attempting to hitchhike.

Goredolf: Wha...Wha...What in the world is that minx thinking!?

Da Vinci: Hmm...Unfortunately, she's too close to the rendezvousfor us to go around her without losing a lot of time.

Da Vinci: But of course, there's no telling what she might do ifwe stay on track and end up running into her...What should we do?

Fujimaru 1: She does look like she's been through a lot...

Fujimaru 2: She looks like she's in pretty bad shape...

Goredolf: Huh!? Whoa, whoa, whoa! You better not be thinking what I think you're thinking, Fujimaru!

Goredolf: I know she helped us out a little in China,but that hardly makes us allies! Not by a long shot!

Goredolf: Besides, let's not forget that it was completely, entirely, one-hundred percent her fault that we were poisoned in the first place!

Fujimaru 1: I couldn't live with myself if I didn't try to help her.

Fujimaru 2: I know, but...I still want to help her.

Fou: Fou, fooou!?

Goredolf: There, you see! Even the little fur ball knows we can't trust her!

Meunière: Come on, we need to make a choice here!

Meunière: That's fine if you wanna ignore her, but you should know she's charging up some weird kind of magical energy!

Meunière: She's holding both hands up and forming some kind of glowing ball of energy above her head!

Fou: Fou! Fo fooou!

Meunière: And just look at that smile. I can almost hear her saying:

Meunière: “If you don't come get me, I'm gonna use all my remaining power to blow myself up and take you all out with me. ”

Captain: ...Meunière, I recommend making a detour.

Captain: We should pick up Fujimaru's group at least ten kilometers away from her.

Meunière: I told you, we don't have time for that!

Meunière: Besides, they're already going as fast as they can!

Fujimaru 1: I don't think we have any other choice but to pick her up too...

Fujimaru 2: Like they say: In for a penny, in for a pound.

Goredolf: Grrr...! Oh, all right! I'll consider this a distress signal and allow it just this once!

Goredolf: She may be one of our most contemptible enemies, but abandoning someone asking for help would just lead to more headaches down the road!

Peperoncino: Yeah, pretty much. Besides, you let me on board when I was in trouble.

Peperoncino: You might as well do the same for Koyanskaya.

Peperoncino: Also, those injuries of hers? It looks to me like she had a falling out with one of our other enemies.

Peperoncino: I had a feeling that was going to happen sooner or later.

Holmes: If that's true, that would mean she's become a target for Arjuna's Noble Phantasm.

Holmes: It would certainly explain why she's looking to the Border, of all places, for refuge.

Holmes: Bringing her on board does pose a risk, but we also know she's been weakened. If she attempts anything untoward, we will not be defenseless.

Holmes: Furthermore, we may be able to gain new and valuable information from her, or even have her fight with us again for a time.

Goredolf: True, true. But I warn you to exercise the utmost caution!

Goredolf: That minx's devilish charms were powerful enough to deceive even a first-class dandy like myself!

Goredolf: If we're going to let her on board, we should put a bag over her head or something just to be safe!

Meunière: Uh, I'm pretty sure we won't have to worry about that. We all know real well what sort of person she is by now...

Goredolf: Don't be ridiculous! You're the one I'm worried about the most, Carpaccio!

Goredolf: I can tell from the “beta male” look on your face that practically screams “2D girlfriends are all I need” that you'd be powerless against her charms!

Meunière: You're worried about ME!? What are you, my mom!?

Goredolf: ...Are you quite sure you'll be all right?

Meunière: Positive.

Goredolf: Well...all right then.

Goredolf: Still, I'm going to give myself a few good dabs of this cologne, just in case.

Meunière: (In case of what, exactly...? )

Goredolf: All right, go ahead and do a full throttle drift to the spot right between Fujimaru and Koyanskaya!

Goredolf: We'll depart once again as soon as we've taken all necessary precautions!

Koyanskaya: Oh good, you stopped. I guess this means you're letting me on?

Fujimaru 1: You're going to tell us all about what's going on, okay?

Koyanskaya: But of course. I would never expect a free ride♡

Fou: Grrr, fou! Fou fou, fooou!

Koyanskaya: Oh my, little Fou, you really do have it out for me,don't you? Ooh, I'm so scaaared.

Koyanskaya: Anyway, let's get going, shall we? Or is the plan to put me in some BDSM gear before we get moving?

Koyanskaya: Perhaps one of you is giddy at the thought of an opportunity to do all sorts of naughty things he missed his chance for in China?

Goredolf: I-I-I'll have you know I was thinking nothing of the sort!

Goredolf: The only thing I'm hopeful for at the moment is the Suspension Bridge Effect!

Holmes: At the moment, I would prefer you get on the Border posthaste, so we can begin our Zero Sail preparations.

Holmes: I tried to ensure we would have time to spare, but I have a bad feeling about what's coming...Do try to hurry!

Limbo: Hehe, hehehehe, hahahahahaha! How unexpectedly thrilling!

Limbo: Perhaps you were simply unaware, my dear Chaldeans?

Limbo: Oh my, this will never do. Surely you should know better than that by now, no?

Limbo: This world gets leaner and leaner as more excess is shaved off with each yuga cycle!

Limbo: That, of course, means that it requires a bit less energy to destroy it as the cycles go on...

Limbo: So if you were expecting it to take as long as it did before, why, you might just find yourselves running a liiittle short on time.

Limbo: Hehe, hahahahaha! Go on, god! Let us proceed with the next culling!

Limbo: ...Huh?

Tell: I see. So you want me to help run this world so you don't have to bother yourself with trivial matters, huh.

Tell: And by running this also mean taking care of people less than inclined to cooperate.

Tell: Heh. Well, I hate to tell you this after you went and summoned me, but I'm not the man for the job.

Tell: My arrows are meant for shooting apples off my son's head, and for shooting that scumbag Vogt through the heart.

Tell: I'll never use them to shoot children. So, guess that's that. Sorry.

Limbo: ...What will you do now?

God Arjuna: If that is...his reason...for refusing to obey me...then those thoughts are...unnecessary...

God Arjuna: There is something...inside him...that should there.

Limbo: Indeed, indeed. I couldn't agree more. But, as luck would have it, the next yuga cycle is almost upon us.

Limbo: All you need do is remove that defect from him, and he will then have no choice but to serve you faithfully...

Tell: I thought I was only going along with you guys as a hunter for hire.

Tell: And as the guy being hired,I expected you to pay me for my help.

Tell: Nobody ever told me I'd be the one paying you such a heavy price. Consider our contract null and void!

Tell: Apfel Schießen!!!

Limbo: You fool! Your idiocy knows no bounds! What can a half-dead Archer's arrow hope to do against a god!?

Narration: I hear a voice from a long time of the “records” that remains in this shadow's head.

Narration: A voice dripping with oppressive authority,intolerant of the slightest defiance.

Narration: “I'm told you have some skill with a crossbow? Then go ahead and make this shot. If you succeed, I will overlook your transgressions...”

Narration: A mess of emotions...Reluctance, doubt, fear...Each raged within me at those words, but still, I took the shot.

Narration: I shot an apple off of my son's head,because I had no other choice.

Narration: That was my profession, after all. I'd made a life out of only ever hitting what I aimed at.

Narration: But I never thought of myself as the god of marksmanship. Besides, even gods are known to miss sometimes.

Narration: And a hunter always has to consider what will happen if they miss their shot.

Narration: Because the fact is, the moment their arrow misses, there will be another target that absolutely needs to be hit.

Narration: So I had another arrow ready to go inside my jacket.

Narration: If my first arrow failed to pierce the apple...

Narration: If both my son's world and mine had ended with that shot...I would at least make sure the beast so needed killing would die with us.

Narration: Thankfully, I didn't need to use my second arrow on that day...

Narration: But even so, I had every confidence in the world.

Narration: If my first arrow had missed...or rather, if the arrow that absolutely needed to hit its target didn't...

Narration: ...the fact that there would then be another target that needed to be hit...

Narration: ...meant that my second arrow would be sure to find its mark.

God Arjuna: Mm...

Limbo: What!? It hit!?

Tell: I always make sure to hit the targets I can't afford to miss. Like the apple on my son's head.

Tell: But of course...I also have another arrow ready to go, just in case I miss. That second arrow is my true Noble Phantasm.

Tell: It doesn't matter if my Zweite Schießen's target is an evil Vogt or a'll still find its mark.

Tell: There are some shots you can only make after you've already missed.

Limbo: ...Now I see. Your Noble Phantasm interferes with causality!

Limbo: It's a shadow arrow that's guaranteed to hit if the arrow before it misses! And on top of that, you infused it with all of Vāyu's divine power to make doubly sure it hit its target!

Limbo: Though of course, that's still not nearly enough to so much as scratch him...

Tell: If this good-for-nothing hunter managed to get god's attention, even for just a few seconds...

Tell: ...I'll consider that plenty meaningful in itself, knowing that a human's will reached him.

Tell: After all, a few seconds has got to count for a lot when you're a god remaking the entire world.

Limbo: ...!

Tell: Hehe, surprised?

Tell: If the look on your face is any indication,this wasn't for nothing after all.

Tell: Well, I'm just that much happier I took the extra effort to rouse these bones for one final shot.

God Arjuna: Your entire being...has become...unnecessary...

Tell: Haha, you think I didn't see this coming? I know how close I am to dying better than anyone.

Tell: But you know, the wounded quarry is the most dangerous as the end closes in.

Tell: There's nothing stronger or more dangerous than a cornered animal. I know that better than most.

Tell: Oh, and one last warning before I go. I told Asclepius this too, but...

Tell: ...the reason you summoned me last is because you felt a regular old human would be a good match for a god, right?

Tell: Even if you only realized it subconsciously,that doesn't make it any less true.

Tell: Hell, maybe that's why that last arrow got through to you.

Tell: If you don't realize what that means...someone even more desperately cornered than me's gonna end up firing a third arrow.

Tell: I wonder who that'll end up being? Hehe, hehehe...

God Arjuna: God...has cast his gaze downward.

God Arjuna: You have become...unnecessary...Furthermore...

God Arjuna: God has...also seen...

God Arjuna: ...

God Arjuna: These defects are unnecessary...and therefore...evil.

God Arjuna: Begone, evil...You are not needed in the new yuga...the new world.

God Arjuna: I will now...wield the sword...of the god who ends all things.

God Arjuna: I will cut off the world. From the rift in the world...made by the blade...clear purification will burst forth.

God Arjuna: Terminus and Genesis...will cycle anew...

God Arjuna: Sword of dissolution, let your blade fall. Mahāpralaya...

Tell: I don't know about defective...

Tell: ...but I can tell that I'm not really me if I can't remember my son...

Narration: ...

Narration: ...

Narration: ...Oh. There you are.

Narration: ...It's all right. It's okay now. It took me a while, but I finally remembered.

Narration: I'm sorry I couldn't be the father you deserved...

Section 15: Return of Paradise/The Queen's Identity

Holmes: The Zero Sail has entered a stable zone. We should finally be safe here, at least for a while.

Holmes: Once again, we escape by the skin of our teeth...I was hoping to never have to cut it that close again.

Fujimaru 1: I'm sorry...

Fujimaru 2: At least we made it, right?

Captain: You are as tasteless as a tiger shark. Do you always bring your enemies with you like this?

Koyanskaya: Oh, if it isn't the strange Servant I saw in the Wandering Sea. I didn't know you were here, too.

Koyanskaya: As you can see, I'm currently nothing more than a fellow fugitive.

Koyanskaya: As they say, no road is long with good company, and love makes the world go round. What a perfect example of strange bedfellows! Or shipmates, if you will.

Koyanskaya: Of course, this is strictly a temporary business arrangement, but I do hope we can get along for its duration.

Da Vinci: Likewise. Oh, and not so much as afinger on the instruments, please.

Da Vinci: If you so much as breathe on them, Mr. Detective thereis going to open up a can of baritsu on your ass.

Holmes: Now, now, I'll thank you not to refer to we detectives as you would a knife. Never mind that my deductions are so sharp one could cut oneself on them.

Holmes: Even I would need a hot shower if I were to get the blood of so toxic a vixen on me.

Koyanskaya: Oh my, the office banter is so pointed here☆You're not picking a fight with me, are you?

Fujimaru 1: Is it awkward in here, or is it just me?

Fujimaru 2: Oh man, I'm getting serious chills down my spine.

Meunière: (What I wanna know is, why's no one pointing out how Koyanskaya's outfit just magically fixed itself!? )

Goredolf: (She even looks good in a traditional Indian outfit, complete with sari...Is she an angel–er, a demon after all...? )

Holmes: All right, enough small talk. We have a great deal of questions, and precious little time.

Holmes: Let's begin with your present circumstances.

Holmes: Why did you seek refuge aboard the Border? Aren't you with the Lostbelts...or rather, the Foreign God?

Koyanskaya: Hmm, well, you know how bands sometimes split up because of creative differences? It's a lot like that. I think Peperoncino there can attest to it.

Koyanskaya: I never liked this one much to begin with, and was planning to wash my hands of him once he'd served his purpose, but he ended up beating me to the punch.

Koyanskaya: He filled Arjuna's ears with all sorts of nonsense about me, and now I'm officially persona non grata in this India.

Koyanskaya: That said, I never had much of an opinion about this Lostbelt to begin with, so I'm not too broken up that I've been exiled from it now...

Koyanskaya: But for the time being, I think I'll stick around a while longer. Let's just say I have my reasons.

Peperoncino: Aha...I thought as much.

Koyanskaya: Thought as much about what, Peperoncino the Traitor?

Peperoncino: Oooh, a swing and a miss! I haven't betrayed anyone, but thanks for playing!

Peperoncino: My goal as a Crypter is to grow my Tree of Emptiness, and I certainly haven't abandoned it.

Peperoncino: I'm not on bad terms with anyone from Team A, and I have no intention of defying the Foreign God either.

Peperoncino: The only ones I don't trust...

Peperoncino: ...are you Alter Egos. I mean, how could I? You're all the definition of shady.

Peperoncino: It's because I have my doubts about you three that I shared the information I have with Fujimaru.

Peperoncino: I thought I could gain some insight from a different perspective on this situation. Though I'm sure Holmesie already deduced as much.

Holmes: Indeed, I was fully aware that you were probing our goals and perspectives.

Holmes: But of course, I allowed it, as I could tell you were doing so from a place of fairness rather than malice.

Holmes: Given the current state of the world, it doesn't take much thought to realize this fatal contradiction.

Holmes: The fact that Ms. Koyanskaya is here right now only further serves to reinforce it.

Holmes: While I do feel as though I already have a firm grasp on the answer, I also feel as though it would be improper for me to be the one to explain it.

Holmes: So, as one of those directly involved...

Holmes: ...I would like to ask you about this great mystery we can no longer ignore, Scandinavia Peperoncino.

Peperoncino: Aww, that's sweet. How can you be so kind and handsome, and yet also so unpopular? Is it because you're inhuman at heart?

Peperoncino: All right then, don't mind if I do. Koyanskaya, you can confirm this for me, right?

Peperoncino: The goals of the Crypters and the Foreign God's Disciples don't completely line up, do they?

Fujimaru 1: !?

Mash: you mean?

Peperoncino: Let me be clear: this world is headed towards oblivion. The way it's being run now, it can't possibly end up at anything halfway decent.

Peperoncino: Once it's completely purged of “evil,” we're not gonna have the perfect world he's aiming for. We'll be left with a world of total nothingness.

Peperoncino: It's fair to say that Arjuna has gone completely off the rails.

Peperoncino: But the bigger that you Disciples aren't doing anything to stop him.

Peperoncino: If anything, that treacherous snake of a man is pushing him to hurry things along. Why?

Peperoncino: The way things are going now, both this Lostbelt and its Tree of Emptiness will be lost forever. So why aren't you two trying to stop that?

Holmes: Furthermore, given the state we found you in, it seems there is also every possibility that even you Disciples don't share a common goal.

Holmes: Tell us: What exactly are you?

Koyanskaya: Hmm, good question. I suppose if it will pay my fare, I'll answer you as far as I'm able to.

Koyanskaya: I do indeed have my own adorable goals I'm working towards. Adorable goals that neither the Crypters nor that shitty monk share.

Rama: I sincerely doubt there's anything adorable about them. What are they?

Koyanskaya: Well, there's tormenting humans...Oh, and collecting regional monsters, I suppose? It's a hobby of mine, investigating new and unusual creatures.

Koyanskaya: This Lostbelt has both kali and sacred beasts,so I'm already pretty happy about that.

Holmes: ...

Mash: What can you tell us about the other Alter Ego?

Koyanskaya: I'm afraid that's one I can't answer. It would violate the nondisclosure agreement in the contract I signed with the Foreign God.

Koyanskaya: The most I can say is that he and I most certainly do not get along, as you can tell from my presence here.

Koyanskaya: The three Alter Egos may have different approaches due to different personalities, but share one common goal.

Koyanskaya: All three Alter Egos want to grow the Trees of Emptiness to completion.

Mash: I see...Is that true for Father Kotomine–I mean, Rasputin, too?

Koyanskaya: Of course. But you know what happened in the Russian Lostbelt, what with its king and Kadoc being who they are.

Koyanskaya: Well, despite what you might think, that priest is a genuine saint, complete with the ability to know the future...I guess you'd say he can make prophecies?

Koyanskaya: And apparently, he prophesized that the Russian Lostbelt was only ever going to end poorly, and acted accordingly.

Koyanskaya: ...All right, that's enough from me. I believe I've more than paid for my fare by now.

Captain: Oh no you haven't. Not by a long shot. It costs a lot more than that to ride my ship.

Da Vinci: Leaving the question of whether it's your ship or notaside, I do agree that she has only begun to pay herfare.

Koyanskaya: Oh, come now☆ Do you have any idea how much Rasputin's secrets would normally cost? That priest never says a word about himself, you know☆

Koyanskaya: It wasn't easy to part with them, but since doing so would be his problem more than mine, I figured I could share them with you as a little bonus of sorts!

Da Vinci: So she's willing to sell out her teammates' skills,but not her own secrets, huh.

Da Vinci: Talk about a dyed-in-the-wool misanthrope. It's likeeverything she does is designed to piss others off...

Peperoncino: (I have a feeling we're not going to get anything from her that she isn't willing to give us...)

Peperoncino: (For now, I guess I should just be glad that I was able to confirm my hypothesis. )

Peperoncino: (I wonder just how much Kirschtaria knows about the Foreign God's identity and objectives? )

Koyanskaya: At any rate, I no longer have any interest in what happens to this world. I am, as they say, over it.

Koyanskaya: So by all means, go ahead and mess with it as much as you like. I'd be especially happy if you could give that shitty monk some much-needed comeuppance.

Goredolf: Do you really think we're done here?

Goredolf: We saved you when you were at death's door, and I doubt you're anywhere close to your old strength yet.

Goredolf: To put it another way, you have nowhere to run,and your life is in our hands now.

Koyanskaya: Oh my, does this mean your gentlemanly facade is crumbling? Now that I'm your prisoner, I wonder what you're going to do to me?

Koyanskaya: Are you going to bind my limbs and throw me in solitary? Chop me into tiny pieces, like what happened in China?

Goredolf: What? No, no, I'm just referring to your promise to temporarily cooperate with us.

Goredolf: Though that's not to say we won't take precautions.

Goredolf: I trust there won't be an issue letting her out of here along with Fujimaru?

Holmes: I highly doubt it. Not with Rama, Ganesha,and Lakshmi all keeping an eye on her.

Holmes: Once we have our safety measures in place, I believe our most prudent course of action would be to act on this new information.

Holmes: And of course, when the situation calls for it,we would like you to assist us in battle.

Holmes: At the moment, I believe that covers the manner of assistance we expect from you.

Koyanskaya: Hmm. Well, I can't promise to be of too much help in combat, but I can certainly fight well enough to protect my own life.

Koyanskaya: And if you're treating me as a guest rather than a prisoner, I'll agree the information I shared doesn't cover my fare.

Koyanskaya: So rest assured, I'll be glad to work off the rest. I certainly don't want to be in debt to humans, after all.

Da Vinci: Well, if nothing else, at least we madeit through another cataclysm unscathed.

Da Vinci: I think we've all earned a little break today, so whydon't we kick back and relax while we wait for theoutside world to stabilize?

Da Vinci: If all goes well, maybe we'll even be able tosettle everything during the next yuga cycle...

Captain: ...Oh.

Lakshmi: So you're the one I heard on the transmission.

Captain: ...I go by Captain right now,though that name has no particular meaning.

Captain: Not that I have any other more meaningful name to go by right now anyway.

Lakshmi: Good to meet you, Captain. I'm–

Captain: You don't have to tell me. I know who you are.

Lakshmi: Do you mean we've met somewhere before?

Captain: ...Of course not. What makes you think that?

Lakshmi: Hmm. I guess it would be your scent.

Captain: ...My scent, huh. Well, I guess I can understand that more than I could if you'd said my appearance.

Captain: Anyway, I'm afraid I have a lot of work I need to get back to. You should rest now, while you can.

Lakshmi: (I wonder why he's avoiding me? I don't remember wronging him. )

Lakshmi: (Although, that look in his eyes...Was it nervousness? Fear? No, wait. )

Lakshmi: (I think it was...guilt? )


Ganesha: Phew! I don't think I've ever been so happy to see the sky.

Ganesha: There really is something about seeing it for the first time in a while that appeals even to a die-hard shut-in like me.

Fujimaru 1: Really?

Ganesha: Well sure. All the more so when you've been inside as long as I have.

Fujimaru 2: I thought you were the type who never left their room no matter what...

Ganesha: How would I get food, or go to the bathroom? Of course I go out when I gotta.

Ganesha: I always enjoyed the early mornings when I'd have to run down to the convenience store to replenish my snack supplies after fighting a massive raid boss for three days straight.

Ganesha: The way you could still see the stars as the first rays of sun started to creep over the horizon was just divine...

Ganesha: Whoa! Maybe it was those spiritual morning walks that made Ganesha choose me for his vessel!

Fujimaru 1: (Yeeeah, probably not. )

Fujimaru 2: (A three day raid boss fight? What were the devs thinking? )

Fou: Fou...

Holmes: My apologies for the seemingly endless string of similar instructions...

Holmes: ...but I would like you all to start by returning to Bichu, as usual.

Fujimaru 1: Got it.

Fujimaru 2: Let's get going then.

Koyanskaya: Ahh, what a perfectly peaceful little human town. It makes me positively nauseous☆

Koyanskaya: So, what's the plan here? You do have a plan to take down that spoiled brat turned god, don't you?

Rama: We're going to tear him off his divine throne and bring him down to our level, starting with this town.

Rama: Now that these people have fought their way through a Kali Yuga, there should be even more of them on our side.

Rama: Once we've convinced this town he isn't a god worth worshipping, we'll move on to other towns until he's weakened enough that we can defeat him.

Koyanskaya: A god boycott campaign, hm? Okay, I can see the sense in that.

Koyanskaya: (At least, theoretically...)

Lakshmi: Even though we're in the peaceful Kṛta Yuga now, something

Peperoncino: I feel it too...Does this town seem weirdly quiet to you too?

Fujimaru 1: Definitely.

Fou: Fou, fou.

Ganesha: Hey guys? I'm kinda worried about Asha.

Ganesha: Remember she said her dad was injured? Maybe we should go check on her first?

Mash: Of course. I was just thinking the same thing. I think her house was over in that direction. Let's go see her.

Mash: There's her house! Thank goodness it's intact...Why don't we take a peek inside through the window first, to see how they're doing?

Fujimaru 1: (There's candles and all sorts of yummy looking things on the table...)

Fujimaru 2: (It looks like they're celebrating something...)

Aunt: Hehe, I'm so glad we all made it to the Kṛta Yuga to celebrate your four thousandth day of life, Asha!

Uncle: Me too. A lot's happened over the different yugas...More than I can even remember.

Uncle: I was worried how things were going to go when we first took you in...

Uncle: ...but you've grown up to be a wonderful little girl.

Uncle: Though you know, it's strange. I know we've been here since way back...

Uncle: ...but this house still doesn't feel like our home...Maybe it's just too big for us?

Aunt: I was just thinking the same thing. Maybe it's time we thought about moving. I think there's another house we could live in not too far from here.

Aunt: But we don't need to think about that now. Today's your special day, and we're going to celebrate! Go ahead and eat anything you want, okay?

Asha: Okay...

Aunt: Aww, what's wrong, Asha? You don't look very excited.

Asha: ...Auntie?

Asha: Doesn't it feel like we're missing someone important?

Mash: ...!!!

Aunt: Huh? What do you mean?

Aunt: Aah! Oh for...Now look what you made me do.

Asha: I-I'm sorry...Are you okay?

Uncle: Haha, you dropped a dish over a little question? You're such an ulloo.

Asha: Ah...There it is again. It feels like...someone else should've said that.

Asha: It feels...strange that nobody's saying it.

Asha: Yeah...It really feels like...there ought to be someone else here with us...

Aunt: What an odd little girl you are. Who would that possibly be?

Aunt: You know it's always been just the three of us.

Asha: Y-yeah, I know. But, I can't help but feel like...I made a promise with someone...

Asha: Someone who said they'd celebrate with me...and patted my head, telling me how much I'd grown...

Asha: Huh...? Am I...crying? Well that's a funny surprise...This is supposed to be a happy day...

Mash: Ghh...!

Fujimaru 1: Mash!

Fujimaru 2: Pull yourself together!

Mash: I-I'm okay...I'm okay.

Mash: But Senpai, this is just...Just...!

Peperoncino: Let's get out of here.

Peperoncino: ...Right now, I don't think even I could look Asha in the eye and smile.

Ganesha: She said his leg was injured. Is that why? A little thing like that...?

Rama: That's just like what happened to Vihan. This is horrible. I don't even have the words for how horrendously wrong this all is!

Lakshmi: ...Oh no!

Lakshmi: Does this mean...!?

Fujimaru 1: Lakshmi! Where're you going!?

Lakshmi: They're not here!

Lakshmi: Hey!

Prakash: Oh, hello. Is everything all right? Would you like to come to my house and have a glass of grape juice?

Lakshmi: Forget about juice! What happened to all the people in the town hall!?

Prakash: Hm? What do you mean?

Lakshmi: You know damn well what I mean. I'm talking about the people who came here from Dival.

Lakshmi: There were dozens of people living here while they tried to find new homes!

Prakash: I'm very sorry, but I truly have no idea what you're talking about.

Prakash: Nobody has ever lived in the town hall.

Lakshmi: Dammit...

Prakash: You poor thing...I don't know what you're talking about, but I can tell you've been through a lot.

Prakash: Well, if there's anything I can do to help, please don't hesitate to call on me. Good luck...

Lakshmi: Dammit...Dammit!!!

Lakshmi: Just refusing to obey is a sin now, you false god? A crime so great you throw them away like they're worthless!?

Holmes: It seems we were too lax in our assumptions.

Holmes: Given how removed Arjuna is from this world...

Holmes: ...I assumed he would never bother to personally determine the so-called defectiveness of individual persons' actions.

Holmes: Especially since we knew Dival continued to exist across yugas even after they began fighting back.

Koyanskaya: That sounds right to me, if we're just talking about Arjuna himself.

Koyanskaya: I'm sure he would consider changes in the little peoples' faith as trivial matters beneath his notice.

Koyanskaya: But he has a certain advisor at his ear–one who loves nothing more than snitching.

Koyanskaya: And I can't see that slimy, devious monk not taking the chance to rat these people out.

Holmes: Yes, I recall you mentioned him on the Border as well. It sounds as though you and he are on extremely poor terms.

Koyanskaya: Oh yes. He's a wonderfully shitty monk☆

Koyanskaya: As for who he is, well, you'll find that out when you meet him yourselves.

Rama: So it's his fault these people disappeared.

Lakshmi: No...It might...It might be mine.

Mash: Lakshmi?

Lakshmi: It might be because I helped them. Because I lit a fire under them. Because I drew the false god's attention to them.

Lakshmi: Maybe I'm the reason they were eliminated.

Lakshmi: They might have been erased as though they never existed because they got caught in my cloud of bad luck!

Rama: Lakshmi...

Lakshmi: ...No. That is not my name.

Lakshmi: I've been lying to you this whole time. Everything that's gone wrong is my fault. I knew I should have stuck to fighting on my own!

Ganesha: Wh-what are you talking about? You're not making any sense!

Lakshmi: ...

Lakshmi: The god that resides within me is not Lakshmi.

Goredolf: Wh-what was that!?

Lakshmi: Me, the goddess of happiness and prosperity? Haha, what a joke. I'm the exact opposite.

Lakshmi: I bring adversity and tragedy wherever I go. I'm the embodiment of things everyone should avoid and despise.

Lakshmi: The real name of the goddess within me is Alakshmi–Lakshmi's older sister, the goddess of bad luck and misfortune.


Captain: ...It's true. Those two sister gods are more alike than shrimp and prawns.

Peperoncino: Alakshmi...That's the goddess of misfortune, Lakshmi's direct opposite. You're saying that's who you really are?

Lakshmi: She is still a source of power lacking in consciousness,as I told you before...but yes, that is who I really am.

Rama: So that's why I was never quite able to sense my beloved Sita's Lakshmi inside you...

Rama: Part of it is because she's only a source of power now, and part of it is because they are sisters.

Rama: No wonder I never got more than a vague impression of the Divinity inside you.

Ganesha: Why didn't you tell us this sooner?

Lakshmi: Alakshmi's request was simple: she conveyed to me that she wanted to help her sister trapped within the false god.

Ganesha: what's the problem? That's one of our goals, too.

Lakshmi: But who would ever want to join forces with the embodiment of bad luck and misfortune?

Lakshmi: I...I've been using you for my own ends all this time.

Lakshmi: I thought you would refuse to help me if I was honest about my identity...

Lakshmi: ...and that would make it harder to achieve my goal of defeating the false god and rescuing Lakshmi.

Lakshmi: Some leader I am. I'm just a foolish woman steeped in lies and deception!

Lakshmi: Now those people were erased without a trace, and all of your hopes are dashed, too. And it's all my fault!

Fujimaru 1: No. You're wrong there.

Fou: Fou fou!

Peperoncino: I understand that you're really Alakshmi. But you're still wrong about the rest.

Mash: Senpai and Pepe are right. You didn't erase Ajai,or the people of Dival...Arjuna did.

Mash: You can't blame yourself for this.

Rama: Indeed. Are you going to insist that every last bit of bad luck we've had was actually your fault?

Rama: Because even for a goddess of misfortune, that would be going a bridge too far, Lakshmi!

Lakshmi: Wha...

Rama: We're fighting for the fate of this entire world. Your luck can't possibly affect that, no matter how bad it may be.

Rama: It is our skill and responsibility alone that will determine the outcome of our fight, just as it always has before!

Rama: So the only laments I'll allow from you are your clumsiness and the way you constantly stub your toe and squirm in agony!

Rama: If you thought we hadn't noticed,you were gravely mistaken!

Fou: Fou. Fo fo fooou.

Lakshmi: ...

Koyanskaya: Sooo, if you're finally done playing guessing games where the answers were obvious...

Koyanskaya:'s about time we started planning our next course of action, no?

Holmes: ...Agreed. Truth be told, I had already formulated a hypothesis as to whom Lakshmi's true Divinity might be.

Holmes: Lest we forget, the power she demonstrated during our first battle with William Tell was clearly nothing that a goddess of fortune would possess.

Koyanskaya: Oh yes, that reminds me. I don't sense Vāyu anywhere, so it seems Mr. Tell never did make it to this yuga, did he?

Koyanskaya: Though I can't say I'm surprised, given the resistance he put up at the end.

Holmes: I'm considering that a highly probable possibility as well.

Holmes: Given how bravely he fought last we saw him, I'm not sure if I should regret that we were unable to have him join us...

Holmes: ...or be glad that at least a bit more of Arjuna's power is now gone.

Da Vinci: Okay, in light of all that's happened, we need to figure out a new plan, starting with where our old one went wrong.

Da Vinci: It's obvious now that we were severely underestimating the extent of Arjuna's ability to erase things he considers defective whenever he remakes the world.

Da Vinci: Hard as it might be to believe, we know now he can get rid of entire communities if he wants to.

Da Vinci: Maybe he came up with some way to simplify it, like assuming anyone who takes up arms against the kali is defective.

Da Vinci: But either way, now that we know he's capable of mass removals like this...

Da Vinci: ...we should probably assume that the more people stand out, the more likely they are to be erased.

Peperoncino: So, what you're saying is...

Peperoncino: ...our plan to turn more people against him and drag him from his godly throne isn't looking too good anymore...

Mash: ...

Fujimaru 1: So, what? We're just going to accept that this is how things are here?

Fujimaru 2: So, what? We're just going to give up on defeating him?

Mash: No...Absolutely not, Master!

Fujimaru 1: You better believe it.

Fujimaru 1: I don't care if this world's god is the one behind it.

Fujimaru 1: No one should have to live in a world where they could be erased like this.

Fou: Fooou!

Fujimaru 1: I'm not giving up yet!

Fujimaru 2: Let's figure out our next plan!

Rama: I couldn't agree more, Master! We may be back to square one again, but so what!

Rama: As for you, queen who has slightly worse luck than most people...

Rama: ...I have no desire for you to wander about in sackcloth and ashes being so terribly morose.

Rama: Who is going to benefit from your doing such a thing? It is an utterly pointless endeavor.

Lakshmi: ...

Rama: Now that we know our old plan won't work, we need your help more than ever in coming up with the next one.

Rama: Will you help us? Will you continue to fight beside us, just as you have till now?

Mash: I second everything Rama said.

Fujimaru 1: Let's just say you're not the first complicated goddess we've had on our team.

Fujimaru 2: Compared to some other companions we've had, a goddess of misfortune is nothing.

Lakshmi: ...Heh. You truly are an odd one, aren't you?

Holmes: All right, now that we've reaffirmed our intent to continue onwards, I would like to begin discussing specifics.

Holmes: Does anyone have any information that would give us a good place to start?

Rama: I'll get right to the point: I can think of one thing.

Da Vinci: Oh? What's that?

Rama: Aśvatthāman. There's something wrong with him.

Peperoncino: Yes, I think we all saw that for ourselves,Ramie darling. Care to be a little more detailed?

Rama: Hmm...I'm afraid it's difficult to explain. All I can say is, when we ran into him during the last yuga...

Rama: felt like there was something fundamentally different about him compared to the other Lōkapāla...

Koyanskaya: Heh heh heh. At least one of you has an eye for detail.

Koyanskaya: Disposing of Aśvatthāman is something I totally endorse, especially as I have my own grievances with him.

Koyanskaya: I would like nothing more than for all of you to beat him within an inch of his life♡

Mash: But we still don't know how to deal with his regenerative powers. Fighting him was like fighting an immortal...

Koyanskaya: Hehehe. Exactly. He's immortal.

Koyanskaya: That's why he has no choice but to do what Arjuna says.

Lakshmi: ...What do you mean by that?

Koyanskaya: Oopsie! Now I've gone and said too much. Let me just go ahead and zip these lips back up.

Koyanskaya: Anyway, I do think it's worth a shot. If you like,I could even tell you where he is right now.

Goredolf: Hold it! I appreciate that proposal, but I don't trust it! Koyanskaya can only be trusted to lead us into a trap!

Koyanskaya: What? And here I made that proposal with the very purest of intentions...

Koyanskaya: I guess this means you still haven't forgiven me after all, Your Excellency...(Sniff, sniff...)

Goredolf: Why in the world would I forgive you when you haven't shown the slightest sign of repentance!? Did that sari do something to your brain, Beautiful!?

Koyanskaya: Juuust kidding☆

Koyanskaya: All right then, I'll go ahead and give you the data you'll need to track Aśvatthāman down.

Koyanskaya: Just to be sure of the results,why not conduct the search yourselves?

Holmes: Hmm. True, that would be safer. Though it will mean we'll need to walk around ourselves to pick up his signal.

Da Vinci: That's just the trade-off we'll have to make for security.

Da Vinci: Even if it takes a little longer, it's a lot better than walking into a trap completely defenseless.

Rama: All right, now that our next goal is decided, let's go find Aśvatthāman and take him out quickly.

Rama: ...Don't worry. Once we find him, just let me handle everything.

Rama: I think I know what's going on with him now, so the next time we meet, I'll see if I'm right...

Section 16: Aśvatthāman

Fujimaru 1: ...There you are!

Aśvatthāman: That's my line.

Aśvatthāman: But what's this? Well whadda ya know!

Aśvatthāman: I can't believe the quarry that got away from me came back of her own accord! I'm so happy, it's actually pissing me off!

Koyanskaya: I appreciate you reacting exactly how I thought you would.

Koyanskaya: You must have known the Chaldeans were hot on your tail, yet you couldn't ignore my aura and couldn't resist waiting around for me to show up...

Koyanskaya: I'm so glad you're as simpleminded as you look. Now, let's get to our grudge match, shall we?

Koyanskaya: Oh, but do be warned: you'll be facing Fujimaru and [♂ his /♀ her] team this time around, and they're veeery tough cookies.

Koyanskaya: You see, they do this ungodly annoying thing where they get stronger and stronger each time they do battle.

Aśvatthāman: Ha! I never could tell whose side you were really on, woman.

Rama: Let me ask you this, Aśvatthāman: Would you be willing to tell us your whole story?

Aśvatthāman: What was that?

Rama: I am a generous king, and I can tell what others are truly thinking. I promise I will neither laugh at you, nor look down on you. What do you say?

Aśvatthāman: ...Ugh, every one of you just makes me so friggin' furious! I don't even know what you're talking about!

Peperoncino: What are you doing, Ramie!? I thought you said you could handle him!

Rama: I thought I could, but it seems this problem is not as easily solved with words as I had hoped.

Rama: We'll just have to pin him down and have him cool off more naturally.

Ganesha: So we're gonna have to fight him after all!?

Lakshmi: I will help you, but what I said before still holds true: do not rely on me too much.

Lakshmi: There is no telling when my poor luck could result in a fatal error.

Da Vinci: But you can control it at least a little, right? Like you did when you got all Tell's arrows to hit you?

Lakshmi: ...A little, yes. But there are some areas that are still out of my control.

Lakshmi: (Not to mention that the recoil from that time is probably–)

Peperoncino: Oh, Aśvatthāman. You really are an awkward boy, aren't you?

Aśvatthāman: Ha! You mean like the opposite of how you strut around in those fancy clothes of yours, ex-Master!?

Peperoncino: Well, I'm certainly less awkward than you. I keep my life nice and simple by doing whatever it takes to stay alive.

Peperoncino: Of course, that still leaves the question of what I want to do with my life once I keep it. It's not easy being human, you know? We always want more.

Aśvatthāman: Hmph. Guess you really must be adroit if you can say that sort of thing with a smile. Maybe I am kind of awkward by comparison.

Aśvatthāman: All I've got going for me is my anger. So it's only natural that anger would become my entire life.

Aśvatthāman: Living my life makes me angry, and my anger gives me a reason to live. Yeah, I know it doesn't make any sense.

Aśvatthāman: Just like I know that the moment my anger dies out,I won't be me anymore!

Aśvatthāman: So as long as I'm still kicking, I've got no choice but to keep my fury keep burning my whole damn life!


Aśvatthāman: Ghh...!

Mash: We did it! But–

Ganesha: Dammit, I knew he was just gonna heal himself again! Is he seriously immortal or something!?

Aśvatthāman: Is that all you've got? I can keep this up–Khh, rrgh...!

Lakshmi: Hm? Is it just me, or is there something else mixed in there?

Lakshmi: It's not just the pain of regeneration. It seems as though there's something deeper eating away at him...

Rama: I knew it. It's just as I thought, Aśvatthāman.

Rama: You're cursed, aren't you?

Fujimaru 1: Cursed!?

Fujimaru 2: ...Did you just say “cursed”?

Rama: That's right. Of course, there are many different kinds of curses, but for this, I believe I know what is at work.

Rama: Even as we speak, this curse is tormenting Aśvatthāman...

Rama: ...or rather, his Servant Spirit Origin, relentlessly.

Rama: This curse must be so powerful that not even a great warrior like him can remove it.

Rama: I expect it is directly rooted in his destiny...

Rama: A curse so deeply tied to his heroics that it is inevitable he would fall prey to it.

Peperoncino: Oh man...I know what it is. That's Krishna's curse, isn't it!?

Aśvatthāman: ...!

Fujimaru 1: What's Krishna's curse, Professor!?

Holmes: I'm sorry to, as they say, burst your bubble,but you won't find any professors here.

Holmes: Both Da Vinci and I would be happy to share what we know about India from books, but in this case, I believe Captain would be the most knowledgeable.

Fujimaru 2: What's Krishna's curse, Captain!?

Captain: ...It's something that happened towards the end of the great war depicted in the Mahabharata.

Captain: Aśvatthāman was overcome with anger at his father's murder, and in a cowardly act of retribution, he snuck into the enemy camp and killed them all in their sleep.

Captain: Afterwards, he fired an arrow at the stomach of the pregnant mother of what would have been the last child of the Kuru...

Captain: ...but Krishna protected the baby and placed a dreadful curse upon Aśvatthāman's head in retaliation.

Captain: One interpretation says that the curse would last for three thousand years, during which he would be forced to endure all manner of pain and suffering.

Peperoncino: I would definitely have noticed if he'd been cursed like that when I first summoned him.

Peperoncino: So Arjuna must have put the curse on him AFTER he stole my Master contract from me.

Peperoncino: It would be well within his power,since he also possesses Krishna's Divinity.

Da Vinci: Aha. Now it all adds up.

Da Vinci: Aśvatthāman, your immortality comes from being born with Yama and Shiva's power, and the curse you're dealing with now is too strong for you to remove on your own.

Da Vinci: So you're trapped in a prison of endless suffering,and death offers no escape.

Mash: !

Ganesha: Then...does that mean you have to do what Arjuna says, or he won't undo the curse?

Ganesha: That IS pretty rough.

Aśvatthāman: ...Shut up.

Peperoncino: At the very least, I can imagine that curse going away once Arjuna finally has his so-called perfect world.

Peperoncino: Though either way, I guess that doesn't leave you much choice but to cooperate with him...

Aśvatthāman: Shut uuuuuup!

Aśvatthāman: I'm so goddamn pissed I can't stand it! I'm mad at myself for being a slave to my anger! For getting myself cursed!

Aśvatthāman: I'm mad at how goddamn weak I am, so weak that I have to obey Arjuna, my mortal goddamn enemy, just to escape this endless pain! All I can do is just keep getting angrier and angrier!

Mash: Aśvatthāman is getting madder than we've ever seen him! Be careful, Master!


Narration: I don't know anything about this Crypter stuff,but whatever they are, that one was still my Master.

Narration: Once he ordered me to leave Arjuna alone,I was able to hold back my urge to kill him.

Narration: But...once my Master was no longer my Master...

Narration: Once Arjuna slapped that curse on me like he was putting a collar on a stray dog, and then told me he was my new Master...

Narration: There was no way in hell I was going to take that.

Narration: I tried to kill him immediately after he cursed me.

Narration: I tried to kill him in the span of a single breath...In the blink of a goddamn eye.

Narration: But...

Narration: did nothing.

Narration: His incredible divine power stopped me, killed me, and brought me back to life. The curse ate away at my body, and I attacked him again.

Narration: Over and over, I was stopped, killed, revived,and cursed. Stopped. Killed. Revived. Cursed.

Narration: Every time he stopped me, I got angrier. Every time he killed me, I saw red.

Narration: Every time he revived me, my fury grew. Every time he cursed me, I became still further enraged.

Narration: Was I just buying time? No way. I wasn't nearly calm enough to think about drawing Arjuna's attention long enough to let my old Master escape.

Narration: ...Though I guess it ended up working out that way.

Narration: It was all just desperate fury, all simply in vain...

Narration: ...until my spirit finally broke.

Narration: Contorting bowels. Rage. (Hell). Every agony in the world. Tearing myself apart. Decimation of the ego. (A single instant). Drool. Flickering consciousness.

Narration: Purple, red, green, black. Lost vocal chords. Spirit Origin violation. Existing, then not, then existing again. Poisonous thoughts. Defeat, pain, chills, hives, agony, fire, all on top of one another. A terrible curse.

Narration: How can I make this damn curse go away? ...What do I have to do to be free of it?

Narration: If helping that damn god get the world he wants is the only way for me to escape this damn curse...

Narration: If this law far more merciful than death is the only way to go...

Narration: ...then I will BE rage. The moment I stop being angry is the moment I stop being me. So I decided I was going to stay angry all the damn time.

Narration: Once I knew I couldn't kill that god beyond gods like this, no matter how angry I got...

Narration: ...I instead chose to burn my own damn weakness with the fires of my rage until the very end.

Narration: It was humiliating for me. Along with idiotic, immature, and inferior.

Narration: But even so, thanks to that, I knew I'd be able to stay angry until my last breath.

Narration: I might've lost the bond with my true Master,and been forced to submit to my most hated enemy...

Narration: ...but at least in this, I still had my pride.

Narration: This way, I would at least be able to remain myself right up until this defective, evil world disappeared.

Narration: Then I'll be able to hit that smug, all-knowing,all-powerful god with one last shot.

Narration: I'll show him that even with his perfect little plan to recreate as he sees fit, and then only what he deems essential, he still couldn't stop me from being me.

Narration: That way, right when everything's about to end,I'll get to laugh in his stupid face...

Peperoncino: ...You really are an odd bird, aren't you?

Peperoncino: You actually chose to keep losing to Arjuna and his curse just so you could continue to be yourself.

Koyanskaya: Exactly. And thanks to that, he's done for,since there's no possible way to save him.

Rama: ...Yes, I'm sure there isn't.

Aśvatthāman: Khh...Ugh, this goddamn pisses me off. So what're you gonna do now, huh?

Aśvatthāman: You gonna tear me to shreds with that sword of evil's bane? Sounds great. Do it. Come on, do it!

Rama: Even if I did tear you to shreds,your body would simply regenerate.

Rama: I suspect it's your connection to Arjuna's nigh-infinite supply of magical energy that forces it to do so.

Rama: Then, once your body is cursed again, it is subjected to endless torment for all of eternity...

Rama: Hehe. But, fortunately for you, I know of a way to do something about that curse.

Aśvatthāman: What'd you just say?

Fujimaru 1: Way to go, Your Majesty!

Rama: Why thank you, Master. Take a moment to drink in my regal glory if you like.

Rama: My brother and Sita would often look at me like that...

Fujimaru 2: Ramaaa!!! Attaboooy!!!

Rama: Hey! You were supposed to gaze at me in awe and admiration there!

Rama: What are you–Don't you pat my head! I'm a king! I deserve far more respect than that!

Aśvatthāman: Ha. You and your damn nonsense are pissing me off. What the hell can you even do about this curse?

Rama: This.

Rama: ...Ngh. This is...quite something, isn't it...

Peperoncino: Whoa, whoa, whoa! What did you just do!? Don't tell me you–

Aśvatthāman: Huh!?

Rama: (Cough) Krishna and I...are both avatars of Vishnu...basically beings of the same nature.

Rama: So if your curse comes from Krishna's power,I should be more than capable of affecting it.

Rama: While I can't completely destroy it, of course,I can at least transfer it from your body to mine...

Rama: Ghh, nnngh! Ow ow ow ow!

Rama: ...I am an invincible king. I'm not about to complain about the pain from a little curse like this. If you thought you just heard otherwise, then I suggest you have your ears checked.

Ganesha: ...

Lakshmi: Y-you're out of your mind!

Koyanskaya: Ugh, I can't stand that sort of simpering self-sacrificing nonsense. If you subject me to any more of this, I'm going to start demanding compensation.

Aśvatthāman: Whoa, whoa, what the hell? Are you stupid or something? Dammit, this pisses me off. I'm still just as angry as ever.

Aśvatthāman: If I don't have to worry about being held hostage to my damn curse anymore...If there's nothing holding me back...

Aśvatthāman: Arjuna was always my mortal enemy, even before he made himself into some kind of god! There's no way in hell I'm not gonna revolt against him!

Mash: !!!

Aśvatthāman: But what's the damn point of me being free of my curse if you just end up cursed in my place!?

Aśvatthāman: All you're doing is gaining one guy and losing another! It's simple math, dammit! Ugh, you frickin' piss me off!

Rama: Don't be ridiculous. Of course I've thought of that.

Rama: As an avatar of Vishnu, Krishna's curse shouldn't affect me as much as it affected you.

Rama: Let's say it brings me down to half my normal strength.

Rama: But in exchange for that strength, we get Aśvatthāman, the hero of the Kauravas.

Rama: A man who is not only an exceptionally skilled warrior, but a tactician clever enough to serve as commander in chief.

Rama: That is to say, you are a Servant who can fulfill more than just one role.

Rama: So while we may have lost half a warrior, we effectively gain two to make up for it! That's a net gain of one and a half warriors!

Aśvatthāman: ...

Fujimaru 1: He's stalking over to me now...

Fujimaru 2: He's glaring at me something fierce...

Aśvatthāman: You. This guy's your Servant, right? ...Does that mean I should be angry at you?

Fujimaru 1: Go easy on me, please!

Fujimaru 2: I'm sorry! I'm sorry!

Mash: A-at any rate! Can I please ask you something just to be sure, Aśvatthāman!?

Mash: Now that you're not cursed anymore,you no longer have a reason to obey Arjuna.

Mash: So...does that mean you're willing to help us now?

Aśvatthāman: Tch. What'd you go and ask that for? You went and reminded me of how completely pathetic I've been.

Holmes: Hmm. I never expected Rama to take on the curse himself, but the benefits of this trade-off may well outweigh the drawbacks.

Holmes: Having Arjuna's last Lōkapāla come over to our side would be quite the boon indeed.

Fou: Fo fou, fooou!

Peperoncino: ...

Aśvatthāman: What's that look supposed to mean, ex-Master? If you want to laugh at me, go ahead. It'll give me another reason to be angry.

Peperoncino: Oh, it's not that. I was just thinking how you really are just how you appear through my Tashintsu. You wear your heart on your to speak.

Peperoncino: So that thing rooted deep inside you is anger. That's what drove you to the Pandavas in the middle of the night.

Da Vinci: Hey, I just have to ask: Haven't you ever wished you could just let all your anger go?

Aśvatthāman: Why? 'Cause it's the whole reason I ended up like this?

Aśvatthāman: Yeah, yeah. I know my anger is what ended up getting me cursed by Krishna while I was alive.

Da Vinci: But you might eventually be able to let go of it if you'd stayed with Arjuna, right?

Da Vinci: I doubt he'd want any “defective emotions” in his perfect world, after all.

Aśvatthāman: Aha, now I get it.

Aśvatthāman: You think I regret giving up that chance to get rid of this anger, don't you?

Aśvatthāman: Haha. Hahaha. Don't be an idiot. Why the hell would I ever regret that?

Peperoncino: It's true, Da Vinci. You've got it backwards. Anger is everything to him right now.

Peperoncino: In fact, I think he made sure his anger would be the one part of him to stick around by constantly proving that he was useful with it.

Mash: (They were only Master and Servant for a short time, and they're absolutely nothing alike. )

Mash: (And yet, in spite of that,Pepe and Aśvatthāman really seem to click. )

Mash: (Maybe this is what they call chemistry...? )

Aśvatthāman: Yeah. Right now, anger and me are one and the same. It was the one way I had to avenge my father and friend's humiliation.

Aśvatthāman: If we were back in Kurukshetra when that war was still going on, and they'd been humiliated again...

Aśvatthāman: ...I'd do the same damn thing without hesitating. Every time.

Aśvatthāman: I'd have used my anger as a weapon to avenge my father and friend, even if I ended up cursed every damn time!

Peperoncino: Got it. I knew you were awkward and simpleminded...but I also know that's why I can trust you.

Da Vinci: Okay then, why don't we find somewhere we can relax and figure out our next course of action? You're a tactician too, right? Can't wait to see what you come up with.

Rama: All right, let's–Ghh!

Ganesha: Hah! You look like an old man who just threw out his back.

Rama: I'm fine, you hear me!? My body just, uh,hasn't quite adjusted to this curse yet.

Rama: J-just give me a moment. I'll be up and about in no time...

Ganesha: You know we don't have time to wait around. Guess I'll just have to give you a piggyback ride.

Rama: A-all right. This is degrading, but I do get the feeling I've had something similar happen to me before.

Rama: ...Perhaps it is just part of my destiny to suffer piggyback rides now and then...

Section 17: The Flaw of Being "There"

Holmes: ...?

Da Vinci: Hm? Something wrong, Holmes?

Holmes: No, it's nothing. For a moment, it seemed as though there was something off about the surrounding area...Hopefully, it was nothing more than a momentary sensor malfunction.

Aśvatthāman: Hmm. So you thought to use people's faith to tear Arjuna down from his divine throne, huh.

Lakshmi: Unfortunately, it didn't work. I never thought even the false god would be so heartless as to cast away every person who lost their faith in him.

Lakshmi: I should have known better than to hope for even so much as that from him...

Peperoncino: Honestly, we're kind of stumped right now. I don't suppose you have any good ideas?

Aśvatthāman: ...

Aśvatthāman: You're on the right track.

Aśvatthāman: Taking away Arjuna's god status is almost certainly the only way we'll be able to beat him.

Fujimaru 1: But...

Aśvatthāman: I know, dammit. Obviously, we can't count on the people of this world to help with that anymore.

Aśvatthāman: So then, our only choice is to use something else. Assuming we even can, anyway.

Da Vinci: IS there something else we can use?

Aśvatthāman: Ugh, dammit, I really didn't want to bring this up since it's a big whole all-or-nothing deal, and that pisses me the hell off.

Aśvatthāman: If we mess it up, we'll all be dead and gone. And even if it works, it'd still only give us a tiny chance of coming out on top.

Aśvatthāman: You still wanna hear it?

Fujimaru 1: Like you said, we don't have any other choice.

Mash: Right. Please tell us, Aśvatthāman. Whatever it is, we're ready to hear it.

Aśvatthāman: ...The biggest factor in Arjuna remaining a god and in control of this world is that he's the one advancing the yuga cycle.

Aśvatthāman: The obvious idea that anyone capable of destroying and recreating the world would have to be a god, only reinforces his position as one.

Aśvatthāman: So as long as he keeps the yuga cycle going,he's pretty much a perfect god.

Ganesha: Makes sense. I mean, you'd have to be one helluva god to remake the whole damn world...

Ganesha: Oh crap, that sort of thinking's part of the problem, isn't it!? Dammit!

Aśvatthāman: But if we look at it another way,that advantage is also a weakness.

Aśvatthāman: If we can defy that world remaking, even just a tiny bit, then he won't be a perfect god any longer.

Koyanskaya: Hmm, I see. Since remaking the world is such a massive undertaking, even the tiniest flaw would have a big impact.

Koyanskaya: Like how a single scratch in a large precious gem makes its value plummet.

Mash: But, how would we actually do that?

Aśvatthāman: That's the problem. We can't take the safe or easy way out with something like this.

Aśvatthāman: We'd have to face Arjuna's world destroying Noble Phantasm head-on...

Aśvatthāman: ...refuse to disappear, and continue our existence as continuous entities.

Aśvatthāman: Once we've done that, we'll have proven his fallibility, and really messed up the idea of him as some perfect god.

Goredolf: A-are you serious!? You want us to face that terrifying Noble Phantasm head-on!?

Goredolf: I thought you were an actual tactician, not an armchair general, you fool! It doesn't matter how plausible something seems if it can't actually be DONE!

Aśvatthāman: Shut up, dammit! You think I don't know that!? That's why I'm saying IF we could pull it off!

Aśvatthāman: ...So that's the plan. An almost suicidal battle of endurance where one wrong move means you're gone for good.

Aśvatthāman: How about it? Anyone here think they can pull that off?


Narration: ...I think back on this world.

Narration: Here, anything its god deems useless,defective, or unnecessary...

Narration: ...gets erased as though it never existed.

Narration: And yet...I'm still here. Haha, how weird is that?

Narration: Me, a hopeless unemployed shut-in who's only good at video games.

Narration: A Divine Spirit Servant in name only who just happened to end up with godly power by some freakish twist of fate.

Narration: There's no way Arjuna wouldn't hesitate to write someone like me off as worthless.

Narration: I should've been the first to go. I'm just a spectator, an uninvited guest who's only here by coincidence.

Narration: At least...that's what I thought.

Narration: But, you know...

Narration: ...even I can't deny that someone knew what I was,and said they needed my help anyway.

Narration: I can't let the hero who placed his trust in me down. So...

Ganesha: I'll do it. Or at least...I'll try.

Narration: ...I think back on this world.

Narration: Here, anything its god deems useless,defective, or unnecessary...

Narration: ...gets erased as though it never existed.

Narration: ...And what could be more useless or unnecessary than a goddess of bad luck and misfortune?

Narration: That said, I'm sure this one wish of mine can still be granted.

Narration: No matter how despicable the role given to me may be, or how defectively unlucky I may have been born...

Narration: ...there shouldn't be anything wrong with praying for my family's happiness.

Narration: No matter what anyone else says about you,I'll always be your friend, kind Alakshmi.

Narration: Luck hasn't always been on my side either, like when I failed to defend my country...but that's exactly why I want you to trust me.

Narration: This time, I won't let anything happen to the ones I care about.

Narration: I'm going to make sure your wish to free Lakshmi from that awful false god comes true.

Narration: That wish may not be anything so large as a country. It's easily small enough to fit into your hand.

Narration: Which is why...I'll make sure to hold onto it tightly.

Narration: I won't let it slip out of my hand for anything.

Narration: Not for the world, and not for its god!

Lakshmi: ...I'll do it too. I'm sure I can.

Fujimaru 1: You guys...!

Mash: But...even Karna couldn't withstand that Noble Phantasm for long. Don't you think it's too risky?

Ganesha: Not gonna lie, if we were gaming, this would be like Hardcore Mode on the Nightmare difficulty setting. Not pretty, but it's our only shot.

Ganesha: Besides, I think I've got a decent shot at winning. I mean, we're talking pure endurance, not reflexes, right?

Ganesha: If do a bit of min-maxing, I think I can optimize my build just enough to survive.

Ganesha: Not to mention that I've–Ganesha's seen that Noble Phantasm a couple of times now.

Ganesha: Basically, all I've gotta do is sit still and keep camping until it's over, right?

Ganesha: I can do that sort of thing in my sleep. I know 'cause I have before. So I'm sure I'll be fine.

Ganesha: Just you wait. I'm gonna come up with a foolproof strategy before the game starts and show you all what a NEET is truly capable of!

Ganesha: That's the difference between me and Karna...between me, and a true hero who faces adversity head-on.

Ganesha: Of course, speaking as someone who never asked to be entrusted with all this responsibility...

Ganesha: ...I figure I need to at least try to live up to it, or I'll never be able to look him in the eye, you know?

Lakshmi: As for me...I think my purpose lies in protecting others.

Lakshmi: While I've thus far had to use my Noble Phantasm to defeat my enemies, it is meant to be used defensively.

Lakshmi: This seems like a perfect opportunity to do just that.

Lakshmi: Of course, I will do my best to tamp down my bad luck and prevent any unfortunate accidents...but if you cannot help but worry, I will understand.

Lakshmi: I'm sure you would rather remove any uncertain elements when carrying out your–

Ganesha: Whoa, whoa, are you kidding me? I'm pretty much counting on your help out there.

Ganesha: Honestly, I was a bit nervous about doing this on my own...But if you're there with me, I think I've got a real shot!

Da Vinci: Just to make sure: You guys do have a plan for making this happen, right?

Ganesha: What, you don't believe me? ...Well, I guess I can't blame you. Basically, I'll be using my secondary Noble Phantasm.

Lakshmi: As I said before, I'm thinking of applying Alakshmi's power to my true Noble Phantasm...

Holmes: I see. There are definite risks with that plan,but there is at least a chance it may succeed.

Aśvatthāman: ...Tch.

Fujimaru 1: Are you mad about something else now?

Fujimaru 2: Is there a problem?

Aśvatthāman: I'll say. How the hell'd you actually come up with a plan to pull this off? Now I've gotta explain the rest, dammit.

Mash: Is there something else we need?

Aśvatthāman: Oh for...Were you really planning on withstanding Arjuna's world remaking cataclysm like it was just a bad storm?

Aśvatthāman: 'Cause you can't. If Arjuna doesn't realize something's not right at first, the jester next to him will.

Koyanskaya: Yes, I'm sure he will. That's why he's there, after all.

Mash: Then...what can we do?

Aśvatthāman: If you're gonna evade Arjuna's eye when he looks over the entire world, he'll need to think you belong here.

Aśvatthāman: He's gotta take you for granted so much that he'd never even think to question your presence.

Aśvatthāman: In other words...

Aśvatthāman: All right, here's the last part of the plan.

Aśvatthāman: ...I'm gonna send you two back in time!


God Arjuna: ...

Limbo: Is something wrong?

God Arjuna: ...It is...a trivial matter...but...

God Arjuna: Aśvatthāman...has escaped...his curse.

Limbo: What?

Limbo: Mmm...That is more than a little troubling. I expect it won't be long before he rebels against you.

Limbo: Say, I have an idea. Why not try using your Master authority to just make him destroy himself?

God Arjuna: That would be...trivial, but...the Kali Yuga is near...As is...the end of...the Great Kali Yuga...

Limbo: I see. So you would prefer not to waste your energy on a single Servant then?

Limbo: Yes, yes, you do have a point. Especially given the current situation!

Limbo: The world is nearing its limit! The reconstruction it underwent during the last Kali Yuga has brought it to its breaking point!

Limbo: And that means...!

Limbo: The world will en–I mean, reach perfection,in the very next cycle! Hehe, hehehehehe!

Limbo: I'm sure you will need every bit of power you have to bring that about, so it makes perfect sense that you wouldn't want to waste any on him.

Limbo: However...I must remind you that Aśvatthāman is like a demigod, and holds the power of Shiva and Yama within.

Limbo: While he may be no match for you and your absolute divine power...

Limbo: ...he could still cause trouble for you if you do nothing to stop him from joining up with the observatory survivors.

Limbo: Surely you don't wish for anything to go wrong during your momentous Great Kali Yuga, do you?

God Arjuna: ...

God Arjuna: Very well...I will send...sacred beasts...after him...Send...every last one that this land...

Limbo: ...An excellent idea. I believe that will certainly be for the best...

Aśvatthāman: You ready yet? If not, hurry it up already. We don't have all day here.

Ganesha: I really wish you'd stop getting angry every time you talk to me. It's a little tough for negative types like me to deal with.

Aśvatthāman: The hell you just say!? Sorry 'bout that! This is just how I am!

Ganesha: That doesn't make me feel better at all!

Lakshmi: All that's left for us to do now is start concentrating. Although...

Fujimaru 1: Are you sure you want to do this here?

Mash: I was wondering the same thing. I thought you would want to go somewhere a little more, um, magecraft friendly.

Aśvatthāman: It doesn't matter where we do this.

Aśvatthāman: Not when these two are about to travel through time.

Mash: ...

G:Peperoncino: I still can't quite believe this is happening.

G:Peperoncino: Though I suppose it isn't all that dissimilar from Rayshifting.

Holmes: I'm afraid I must disagree. Rayshifting is pure engineering built on Spiritron Theory.

Holmes: What we are attempting to do here is a once-in-a-lifetime feat that relies on a series of coincidences.

Holmes: Simply put, a miracle.

Holmes: A miracle only made possible by the anomalous nature of this Lostbelt, rather than regular Earth...

Holmes: ...and the fact that its inner time and space have grown unstable thanks to Arjuna repeatedly destroying it.

Holmes: Even then, it still requires us to make full use of the power of Shiva, the ruler of time.

Holmes: One might say it is the exploit to end all exploits. And needless to say, we can only employ it once.

Holmes: Which, of course, is why I would like to ensure you are all as thoroughly prepared as possible.

Aśvatthāman: If Arjuna ever realizes you two aren't completely of this world, it's over.

Aśvatthāman: So you've gotta become part of it. Something no one would ever think to question, like the sun or the sky.

Aśvatthāman: And while you're doing that, you'll have to endure his world-ending cataclysms right up to the present day...

Aśvatthāman: ...when your efforts to prove his fallibility will finally have meaning.

Aśvatthāman: That's the only kind of poison that'll weaken him enough for us to defeat him. Much as it pisses me off to say's basically a way to curse him.

Ganesha: Okaaay. So, I gotta long do we have to do this?

Aśvatthāman: From the point when Arjuna first started ruling the world like this all the way to now.

Aśvatthāman: I won't know how long that is until we do it, but I'm guessing it'll be thousands of years, if not longer...

Mash: ...

Fou: Fou...

Fujimaru 1: Are you sure you're sure about this?

Ganesha: Geez, what is this, the millionth time you've asked? I keep telling you, I'll be fine.

Lakshmi: I can understand how they feel. I still have my doubts as well.

Lakshmi: After all, the role you agreed to take on comes with a far greater mental burden than mine.

Lakshmi: My task will simply be to provide you with power. You're the one who will be using it to maintain the spell and your Noble Phantasm.

Lakshmi: You'll have to stay awake the entire time, without letting your mind rest, or retreating into an inorganic state.

Lakshmi: You're going to have to maintain uninterrupted consciousness for thousands of years.

Lakshmi: So long a time could drive even a god to madness. Are you absolutely certain you can handle this?

Ganesha: Ha ha ha! Do you even know who you're talking to? I'm a professional shut-in! I am...the queen–no, the empress of NEETS!

Ganesha: Plus, you throw in my mysterious divine powers, I summon some video games and other goodies, and this'll be a cakewalk, like a staycation!

Ganesha: Hell, this is the perfect time to one-hundred percent a few thousand-hour games I've had my eye on for a while.

Mash: ...Senpai.

Mash: I know Ganesha is treating this lightly...but she must be more worried than she's letting on.

Mash: I'm sure she's trying to be brave,so as not to worry us.

Fujimaru 1: ...Yeah.

Fujimaru 2: We are asking a lot of her...

Ganesha: Hey! Don't you know better than to whisper about someone right in front of them!? NEETs are really sensitive, you know!

Ganesha: I'm telling you, I'll be fine. Really.

Ganesha: Besides, Aśvatthāman told us all about some top secret info, so there shouldn't be any problem keeping our prom–

Aśvatthāman: That was only if you two make it back here safely,AND if everything else goes well, dammit!

Aśvatthāman: Just FOCUS on what you're about to freakin' do! Ugh!

Ganesha: Gaa! Didn't I just ask you not to get so angry at me!?

Ganesha: Actually, I think I know now why it's especially hard for me to get near you. You reek of Ganesha's old man, Shiva.

Ganesha: It reminds me of the uncle who always scared me...I wish you'd at least learn to use your inside voice.

Captain: ...This won't be an easy job for you, either. It'll be like swimming against the current.

Lakshmi: Heh. Are you worried about me? Don't be. I'm used to enduring strenuous conditions.

Lakshmi: Truly, that's the only way we guerrillas know how to fight.

Captain: (...I know. That's why you...Why I...)

Aśvatthāman: Look, just hurry up and let me know when you're ready. I'm not gonna rush you, but the sooner we do this, the better.

Aśvatthāman: Arjuna's still my Master right now. It wouldn't surprise me at all if he knew I wasn't cursed anymore.

Aśvatthāman: And the only thing I'm really concerned about is him trying to–

Holmes: I'm afraid your concern was well-founded. There are sacred beasts headed your way from all directions!

Meunière: Holy hell, there's so many of them! Is...Is this ALL of them!? I've never seen this many before!

Aśvatthāman: (Tch, now what? Should we try again later, or–)

Lakshmi: We can't be certain that the situation won't worsen further. We should take care of what we need to do before the sacred beasts reach us.

Ganesha: D-do you really think we have enough time? They're headed here awfully quick!

Lakshmi: I'll make sure we have enough time. I have nothing left to hide, so I'll tell you what I'm about to do.

Lakshmi: I'm going to pour all of my magical energy into my Noble Phantasm.

Lakshmi: Now that I've made full use of Alakshmi's power, there should be another unavoidable reaction besides bad luck.

Lakshmi: I'm going to bring that reaction about intentionally. At this point, I should be able to control it somewhat.

Da Vinci: Now there's a group of kali headed your way too!

Lakshmi: There it is. I summoned them.

Goredolf: You did what!?

G:Peperoncino: Aha...Now I get it.

G:Peperoncino: I knew I was forgetting something important. Alakshmi is said to be Kali the Demon's second wife!

Lakshmi: I don't know about that, nor can I ask her. But I do sense a connection between the kali and the goddess inside me.

Lakshmi: Remember when that giant kali formed in Bichu?

Lakshmi: I think that was the consequence of using my goddess power in the fight against William Tell.

Lakshmi: That's why the kali were so frenzied back then; I form a connection to them whenever I make full use of Alakshmi's power.

Lakshmi: Though I'll admit I didn't realize this myself until after I saw that giant kali.

Lakshmi: If I'd only realized it sooner, we may have been able to lessen the damage they did to Bichu...

Mash: Does that mean you can control them,or give them instructions?

Lakshmi: I doubt it. The best I can do is point them in a given direction.

Lakshmi: But I will try and command them to hold back the sacred beasts as best as I can!

Lakshmi: Come, Ganesha! Aśvatthāman! We have work to do!

Ganesha: I was hoping for a little more time to, y'know, mentally prepare...but I guess that's not happening! Aw man, I really wanted to do this in a more relaxing environment!

Aśvatthāman: Tch, we'll just have to play the hand we're dealt!

Aśvatthāman: Listen up. This is a big job, even for me. It's gonna take time to focus, and as much as it pisses me off, I won't be able to move while I'm doing it.

Rama: Don't worry. A few hundred sacred beasts is nothing for a man of my abili–Ghh, nnghh!

Fujimaru 1: Um, are you okay?

Rama: H-hahaha! Not to worry! A curse like this just makes for a fairer fight!

Rama: ...Or so I was hoping. But I'm afraid things may be more dire than I thought.

Rama: Ganesha and Lakshmi are preparing for their endurance spell, and Aśvatthāman is getting ready to send them back in time.

Rama: The only ones here who can fight are me saddled with this curse, and Mash. Peperoncino, I don't suppose–

G:Peperoncino: This should really go without saying, but I'm just a human mage. Don't expect any more from me than that.

Mash: The Ortinax's systems are all green. I won't have any issues using it! That said...

Mash: We are very, very seriously outnumbered. It'll be difficult to defend against them, let alone drive them awa–

Mash: Aah! Master, look out!

Mash: She stopped the sacred beasts attacking us from above!

Fujimaru 1: You just saved me...Does that mean you'll help us?

Koyanskaya: Absolutely not. I'm only repaying my debt.

Koyanskaya: Don't mistake this for anything other than that.

Koyanskaya: I will never help humans. I will never accept them,or love them, or forgive them.

Koyanskaya: The only thing I will do is repay them any debt I may owe. That is the only reason I'm doing this.

Koyanskaya: ...Though of course, I trust it goes without saying that I can't possibly take care of all these beasts myself.

Mash: We know that!

Mash: I'll handle any hostiles that manage to get past Lakshmi's kali and evade your shots!

Rama: There's no need to wipe them all out. We just have to buy enough time for...Khh!

G:Peperoncino: Oh for...Stop it, Ramie! You can't push yourself too hard!

G:Peperoncino: Okay, Fujimaru, this is it! Let's try to buy them as much time as we can!


Rama: Ghh...!

B:Peperoncino: I guess there's only so much we can do, even if it's just to buy time. We're all doing our best, but there's just not enough of us.

Mash: Unfortunately, there's nobody else who can help us now, and there's nothing more we can do on our own!

B:Peperoncino: ...

B:Peperoncino: Well, that's not entirely true.

Mash: Huh?

B:Peperoncino: Obviously, we can't increase our numbers or anything, but we might still be able to pull this off if we change how we go about it a little.

Fujimaru 1: You mean, we all need to try even harder?

Mash: Um, if you're talking about psyching ourselves up and giving it one-hundred and twenty percent, I don't think that's going to help!

Fujimaru 2: I'm pretty sure we're all giving it everything we've got already!

B:Peperoncino: No, I don't mean that. See, there's someone here who's still trying to play it cool, even in this situation.

B:Peperoncino: A real dummy who has yet to put all their cards on the table.

B:Peperoncino: I'm the dummy. It's me.

Fou: Fou!?

B:Peperoncino: I wasn't planning to do this in front of you and Mashie, Fujimaru.

B:Peperoncino: Maybe that's because I'm still technically your prisoner, and I thought it'd be better if I didn't do anything that'd make you more suspicious of me.

B:Peperoncino: But now that I think about it, I don't really mind if you know. And if it'll mean we make it out of here alive, I don't see any reason to hesitate.

Mash: Um...what are you talking about?

B:Peperoncino: ...Killing.

B:Peperoncino: (Step in with Jinsokutsu, use Tashintsu to read how it's going to act, and...)

B:Peperoncino: These things might not be ordinary creatures, but it's not like they keep their brains in their stomachs or have organs made of diamond, right?

B:Peperoncino: As long as their bodies follow mostly the same rules as ours, I can apply the knowledge I already have and probably manage somehow.

B:Peperoncino: From there, all I have to do is destroy their vital organs, and they'll die just like any other creature.

Mash: ...!!!

B:Peperoncino: That's not to say I like doing this sort of thing. It is just awful on my cuticles, and it's not even any fun.

B:Peperoncino: That said...I can't say I really hate doing it. I guess that's not great either, huh?

B:Peperoncino: I suppose I can't judge Beryl after all. Not when I'm doing the same thing as him.

Mash: ...

B:Peperoncino: Aww, it hurts to see you look so upset, Mashie.

B:Peperoncino: Oh well, no going back now! Especially not when we're still severely outnumbered.

B:Peperoncino: Come on, guys, let's keep it up! We don't have time to be slacking off!


Mash: There isn't a single wasted motion in his combat style. Pepe...he's obviously very proficient in it.

Mash: I've seen other styles like it before.

Mash: His movements and methodology are straight out of Assassin Emiya and Emiya Alter's playbook...

Rama: You've been holding out on us, Peperoncino.

C:Peperoncino: Well of course I was! Beautiful people like myself don't reveal all on the first date!

Rama: Beauty!? I'm not sure what beauty has to do with this,but at any rate, I'm glad to see you can fight!

C:Peperoncino: But of course! True beauty is freedom, after all. There's nothing those of us with beautiful bodies can't do.

C:Peperoncino: If I told you you had a beautiful body too,Ramie, would you hold it against me?

Rama: I don't know what you mean by that, but whatever it is, I'm quite certain now is not the time for it!

C:Peperoncino: Aww, you're no fun...But, I guess you're right. We do still have more sacred beasts to deal with!

C:Peperoncino: Hang in there, people! Aśvatthāman and the others should be done soon! For now, the dance continues!


Koyanskaya: Ugh, are we still not done? This is getting REALLY old!

Mash: There's no end to them...It's as though every sacred beast in the world is coming after us!

Fou: Fou, fooou!

Mash: We haven't heard any status reports from the Border for a while now either. I can't tell if we're making progress or going in circles...

Mash: ...But either way, it doesn't matter! We've just got to keep doing what we can, as best we can!

Narration: ...Burn. Burn.

Narration: I've got to burn myself–my anger–for fuel.

Narration: We'll never get Arjuna to drop his guard again. This is our only chance.

Narration: This world's space-time is coming apart at the seams thanks to Arjuna breaking and remaking it over and over.

Narration: But it's that instability that'll let us break the rules and send someone back in time, even if we only get one shot.

Aśvatthāman: (First, I've got to awaken Mahākāla...the manifestation of Shiva inside me that can control time itself! )

Aśvatthāman: (Next, I'm gonna need a metric ton of magical energy. And fortunately, I know just where to get it...! )

Aśvatthāman: (Since that bastard Arjuna is still my Master...I'm not gonna be shy about grabbing up some of that endless magical energy for myself! )

Aśvatthāman: (That's part of controlling Servants, “Master. ” If they need more magical energy, it's your job to fork it over! )

God Arjuna: ...?

Aśvatthāman: ('Course, he'll figure out what I'm up to soon enough. That's why we only get one shot at this. Gotta make sure everything's in place before he can mess it up! )

Aśvatthāman: What's taking you guys so long!? Hurry it up already, dammit!

Narration: ...I am a guardian.

Narration: I protect countries. People. Hopes. Dreams.

Narration: That is why I'm here. That is why I exist.

Narration: As a queen, I may have failed to protect my country, and I may have lacked the skill needed to help my people's rebellion succeed...

Narration: ...but I think that's why I was called here,as though I were some sort of hero.

Narration: I think this world is giving me another chance to get it right.

Narration: It's challenging me to protect the things I couldn't protect before.

Lakshmi: Very well. Challenge accepted.

Lakshmi: I am Lakshmi Bai, the Rani of Jhansi!

Lakshmi: To those kind failures lending me your strength, Alakshmi, the goddess of misfortune, and I promise you this:

Lakshmi: We will not let one more thing be cruelly and unjustly taken from us! This time, we will protect everything!

Lakshmi: Nahi Doongi!!!

Narration: Are you seeing this, Karna?

Narration: In the end, this is what it all comes down to. I'm gonna be true to myself, obstinate pessimism and all.

Narration: Since there aren't many things I'm good at, I want to at least be decent at the things I'm used to.

Narration: Once, in a very different time and place...

Narration: believed in me completely,even though you knew I wasn't special.

Narration: So now...even though I'm scared, I've got to act like what I'm about to do is no big deal, just like I usually do.

Narration: Besides, I'm not running away from everything this time. I'm just waiting for someone to come and get me.

Ganesha: Hey, Ganesha? I'm sorry you drew the short straw, getting me as a vessel. But you knew what you were in for, right?

Ganesha: I sure hope so, seeing as you picked the world's biggest NEET and all.

Narration: Ganesha's the god of prosperity, the god of knowledge...and the god of obstacles, especially removing them.

Narration: And what are obstacles? Obstructions. Things that try to hold us back or stop us from getting where we want to–where we need to go.

Ganesha: I've always been keenly aware of obstacles. I feel like I've been surrounded by them my whole life.

Ganesha: So for me, treating the entire outside world like one giant obstacle is as easy as pie.

Narration: All right, it's time to gather up that power, and solidify it to protect me in my own little world. It's time to make a nice comfy NEET cave to last me a good, long time.

Narration: A completely impenetrable domain that not even a god could hope to pry open.

Ganesha: ...Ganesha Vighnesvara...

Mash: Wait...I can sense their Noble Phantasms!

Fujimaru 1: Did they make it!?

Fujimaru 2: Aśvatthāman!

Aśvatthāman: All right...You guys better hang in there. I'm gonna be mad as shit if you give up before you're done!

Aśvatthāman: But hey, don't worry! Sure you'll be gone a long time, but we'll see you again real soon!

Aśvatthāman: Mahākāla Shakti!!!

Fujimaru 1: They're gone...

H:Peperoncino: Are you sure it worked, Aśvatthāman!?

Aśvatthāman: Hah. What, are you trying to piss me off? Look up, dummy, and see for yourself.

Aśvatthāman: They did it.

Aśvatthāman: All we've gotta do now is pick our heroes up and congratulate 'em on a long-ass job well done!

Aśvatthāman: Khh...!

Rama: Are you all right, Aśvatthāman!? I thought I still had your curse!

Aśvatthāman: It's not the curse, dammit. It's 'cause I used too much power to mess with time...But don't worry about that now!

Mash: Right! I finally understand now...and I know just where we need to go to pick them up!

H:Peperoncino: There's just one more problem. Now that Lakshmi's not here...

H:Peperoncino: ...the kali aren't helping us anymore!

Koyanskaya: Ugh, this is way more trouble than I expected! All right, fine, I'll just consider everything around us an enemy then!

Fujimaru 1: Let's find a spot where we can break through them!

Fujimaru 2: We'll just have to make our way through them as best we can!

Mash: Right. There are still a huge number of hostiles,but I know we can get past them!

Mash: The Ortinax has accumulated some strain...but it still hasn't reached its limit. There should be no issue using it in combat.

Mash: Moving forward! Please make sure to stay right behind me, Master!


Rama: There's just...too many! Argh, if only I could use my body like normal!

Aśvatthāman: Oh crap. Is that...!?

Aśvatthāman: He must've finally figured out something was up. Guess that's no surprise, since we were messing with time itself!

Mash: What's wrong, Aśvatthāman!?

Aśvatthāman: Arjuna's on his way here. Based on how fast Vimana is approaching, we don't have much time!

D:Peperoncino: I'm sure we don't. But these things just keep coming, no matter how many we kill.

D:Peperoncino: Forget going to pick them up. At this rate, we won't even be able to get through all these sacred beasts and kali.

Koyanskaya: ...It looks like your plan won't work after all.

Koyanskaya: Your idea of making a perfect god fundamentally flawed from the start was so wonderful it made my ears stand on end...

Koyanskaya: But it seems you were just one–no, two steps short of seeing it through.

Mash: We can't break through all these hostiles! And after we've come all this way...!

Rama: Damn it! Isn't there anything we can do!? Anything?!

Fujimaru 1: No...We're not giving up yet!

F:Holmes: We arrived in time!

H:Mash: The Border!? What...How!?

G:Goredolf: We can talk later! Hurry up and get in already!

Holmes: Sorry to worry you! We couldn't even spare the resources to tell you we were on our way at top speed!

Mash: Wait...What are you doing in the middle of this Lostbelt anyway? Isn't it dangerous for you to be here!?

Da Vinci: Oh believe me, I told them over and over,in no uncertain terms, how bad of an idea this was.

Da Vinci: The Zero Sail is our lifeline.

Da Vinci: Even a little damage to the Border would make it impossible for us to evade the next cataclysm.

Da Vinci: Needless to say, we were risking everything to come here! But...

Goredolf: Gaaah! So many kali and sacred beasts up ahead of us! This is the worst S curve I've ever had to drive through!

Goredolf: Gnnn, I can't believe they're making me drift in a twelve-wheeler!

Goredolf: Well what do you know. I actually did it. Surprised? I am too.

Goredolf: Go on then, all of you hurry up and strap in! This ride isn't gonna get any smoother!

Goredolf: We don't want you getting hurt if we run into anything!

Goredolf: If you die, Fujimaru, that's the end of everything!

Goredolf: There's no point in keeping the Border out of harm's way if there's no one around to drive it!

Goredolf: A pit crew certainly can't compete in a race on their own, after all!

Meunière: (I think you've finally started talking to yourself,chubby! But who cares! You actually pulled it off! )

Meunière: (I still can't believe we got there in time! I had my doubts about him driving the Border manually, but I guess machines really do require an analog touch! )

D:Peperoncino: Wait, hang on. Why does it look like he's holding the wheel!?

Da Vinci: This isn't normal, believe me. See, we were thinking about what we could do to get to you guys as fast as possible...

Da Vinci: ...and we decided the best way to do that would be to share the load.

Da Vinci: Meunière and I focused on controlling the engine and making sure all the Border's power went to keeping it at top speed...

Da Vinci: ...and Gordy's job was to focus on the actual driving.

Da Vinci: I swear, I don't even know when he installed the extension system that let us split up our jobs like that...

Captain: ...I didn't have anything better to do,and I thought it'd be useful.

Meunière: Get this, Fujimaru. It turns out our director is actually a pretty badass driver!

Goredolf: Heh! Well, I couldn't let the detective keep the top score on the simulator's highest difficulty course forever.

Goredolf: In fact, I finally beat his record just the other day! How do you like them apples!? Hahahaha!

Holmes: ...(Quietly applauds while smiling wryly)

Goredolf: While I do prefer on-road, I've driven more than my fair share of off-road as well. And they say the Phoenix shines brightest when things are at their worst!

Goredolf: ...Graaahhh! Move, move! Get out of the way!

Mash: His concentration is incredible! He's right between sacred beast and the kali alike!

Aśvatthāman: Ha! That's some good anger you've got there, big guy. I like how you let it loose in your driving, too!

Fujimaru 1: Are you angry too, Director?

Goredolf: You know what? I am, dammit!

Goredolf: And not just because we had to save you to keep our hopes of fixing this mess alive.

Goredolf: I have my own bones to pick with this world!

Mash: Huh?

Goredolf: But since I can't give this world a good slug, I'm taking out my resentment towards it with the Border.

Goredolf: Perfectly natural for defects and failures to be erased in this world? How dare they say that in front of me!?

Goredolf: Ever since I, Goredolf Musik, was born, I never did anything well enough to get so much as a single gold star!

Goredolf: Well, now it's time to show off what a disgraced noble is really made of! Whatever you do, don't undo your seat belts! And try not to talk unless you want to bite your tongue!

Mash: Well, um, I can't say I saw this coming...But at least now, we should be able to meet back up with Ganesha and Lakshmi!

Rama: I just hope...we don't run into more trouble...on the way there...(Huff, huff...)

Holmes: Indeed. I'm seeing a signal in the distant eastern sky.... It's Arjuna.

Holmes: We can't let him catch up to us now! Floor it, Da Vinci!

Da Vinci: What do you think I'm doing!? If you really want to help me go faster, then just leave me to it!

Da Vinci: Keeping the engine running at full speed without it blowing up in our faces isn't as easy as I make it look, you know!

Section 18: Together With You, At the End of the Eternity Known as a Moment

Narration: I witnessed a foolish war.

Narration: A foolish war that left me with nothing but one question.

Narration: ...Everyone understood how foolish it was. So why couldn't we stop it?

Narration: That much was obvious. It was all down to everything that was bad and wrong in the world.

Narration: In other words...the root cause of all this foolishness was evil.

Narration: This is the sort of thing that happens when we can't rid ourselves of evil.

Narration: Being defective is evil. Being unnecessary is evil. Dishonesty is evil. Lawlessness is evil. Intolerance is evil. Distrust is evil. Adultery is evil. Disloyalty is evil.

Narration: Bravado is evil. Deception is evil. Obliviousness is evil. Ignorance is evil. Decadence is evil. Jealousy is evil. Stupidity is evil. Avarice is evil.

Narration: Everyone knows these things are evil.

Narration: So why can't we rid ourselves of them?

Narration: So I made a wish. Perhaps I felt differently in other worlds, but here in this one...

Narration: ...I wished that there was a way we could be rid of them all.

Narration: It was only after the war ended that I understood.

Narration: The land stained red with my comrades' blood made it clear. The endless retribution, one cowardly act of violence begetting another, and on and on made it clear.

Narration: The feeling of killing a hated rival with my own hands made it clear.

Narration: The world simply cannot rid itself of evil on its own.

Narration: So if the world won't do it...someone else will have to.

Narration: And if no one else is willing...

Narration: ...that leaves only me.

Narration: After all...

Narration: ...the one who spilled the most blood on that land...

Narration: The one most emblematic of the battlefield's evil foolishness...

Narration: In other words, the most evil and foolish one of all was...

Narration: I wished for a just and proper world.

Narration: An obvious, completely ordinary world that no one would ever think to question.

Narration: A world so pure and perfect that only newborns and gods could believe in it.

Narration: A righteous world where people never killed one another.

Narration: Fortunately...the power I needed to destroy all evil and create that world...

Narration: ...was right there for the taking...


God Arjuna: ...

Goredolf: What was that!?

Holmes: Vimana is firing magical energy blasts at us from afar! Evasive maneuvers!

Goredolf: Grrr, damn it aaall!

Peperoncino: My, my, it looks like he's finally taking us seriously. Whatever you do, try not to slow down, okay?

Goredolf: Easy for you to say!

Peperoncino: Well, what else can we do? Our lives are in your hands, and those hands are driving this vehicle.

Peperoncino: Come to think of it, I guess the fate of the whole world is in your hands too, huh?

Goredolf: Stop that! I'm under enough pressure as it is! Grr, doesn't anyone have any good news for me, dammit!? At this point, I don't even care if it's real or not!

Holmes: My apologies, Commander, but I'm afraid I'm only seeing another abnormality in our nearby environment.

Holmes: (Although...Did the state of the world just change? Why now of all times? )

Holmes: Hmm. Well, this is certainly less than optimal...

Holmes: (It appears that...the entire world is starting to buckle under the strain of all these cycles...)

Meunière: Never mind that now, Holmes! Can't you see we've got more urgent matters for that big brain of yours to focus on!?

Meunière: Between the kali, the sacred beasts, and the magical energy blasts, there's just too much for me to keep track of alone!

Da Vinci: Boy, it'd suuure be nice if a certain captain with nothing better to do was willing to help us out right about now.

Captain: I'm only here to upgrade the ship. I didn't sign up to be part of the crew.

Captain: ...But, I guess the circumstances are dire enough that I don't have a choice. And this shouldn't be too different from detecting torpedoes.

Meunière: Really!? Phew, you're a lifesaver! Okay then, you handle the cannon fire!

Captain: ...But, since we don't have any decoys to lead them away, all I can do is read the incoming projectiles' trajectories.

Captain: The steersman piloting this ship will have to handle the rest.

Captain: I can still tell you when to take evasive maneuvers, of course, but as for whether we survive, the gods only know.

Goredolf: Isn't surviving against a god exactly what we're trying to do here!?

Mash: Please, Director Goredolf! Please do whatever you have to in order to get us there!

Goredolf: Arrrgh! All right, you want to do this thing? Let's do this thing!!!

Captain: ...Here comes the next one. Stay on course for the next five seconds, and...Swerve!

Goredolf: Wahahaha! At this point, all I can do is laugh! Do try to keep the impossible demands to a minimum, my dear Captain!

Peperoncino: I sure hope we make it out of this.

Fujimaru 1: At least we're almost there now...!

Mash: Right. When I first saw it, I never would have thought that this could be what it really was...

Mash: ...Can I ask a silly question? Why is it shaped like that?

Aśvatthāman: Beats me. All I know is, Ganesha's the one handling that.

Aśvatthāman: She probably based it off the most impenetrable thing she knew about.

Aśvatthāman: I don't know exactly what that could be, and I doubt she does either except maybe in her subconscious.

Holmes: It is an impenetrable domain made for the sole purpose of ignoring the outside world–an alternate world that physically embodies the very concept of shutting oneself away.

Holmes: Given all that, it is no wonder we were unable to get a proper read on it.

Holmes: Furthermore, as it was made by a combination of both Ganesha and Lakshmi's magical energies...

Holmes: ...that made it impossible for either of them to sense what it actually was before they knew the truth.

Rama: This is only the second time we're paying it a visit,but it feels completely different now.

Rama: Back then, it was nothing more than a large object whose nature and purpose were completely unknown to us.

Fujimaru 1: Now, we know it's been waiting all this time to fulfill its purpose.

Fujimaru 2: Now, we're about to give it the purpose it's been waiting for!

Mash: Right! It's time to go back to God's Skyboulder...To the place where Ganesha and Lakshmi are waiting!

Holmes: Yes, but not so fast. Remember what happened the last time we were there.

Goredolf: Dammit, that's right! There are tons of kali protecting it!

Captain: ...Slowing down now would make us sitting ducks. Full speed ahead.

Holmes: Now I see. Those kali are here because of Lakshmi...or rather, Alakshmi.

Holmes: Since she has a connection to them, they must have been lured here by the scent of her pure magical energy...

Holmes: ...and it's since become a kali nesting ground of sorts.

Mash: If we keep going like this, kali are going to start attacking the Border!

Mash: Please open the side hatch, Holmes! I'll go out there and try to fend them off!

Aśvatthāman: Well, guess I'd better head up to the roof then.

Peperoncino: Just make sure you don't lose your footing, got it!?

Holmes: By the way, if you pull that hidden lever there,you'll find a porthole, so make good use of it.

Koyanskaya: You STILL won't give me a break!?


Narration: .........

Narration: .....................

Narration: I'm still fine. Totally fine. Like I said, I still have plenty of video games to keep me occupied here.

Narration: No interruptions. Just me and my games. It's like heaven.

Narration: What could be better than a place where all I have to do is grind? Being a NEET is the best.

Narration: All I have to do now is keep doing exactly what I've been doing. Easiest job in the world.

Narration: So...yeah.

Narration: I'm not worried about this at all. Why would I be?

Holmes: We're here. Thankfully, the blasts from Vimana are sending the nearby kali scattering! Now's our chance!

Fujimaru 1: Thank you, Director!

Goredolf: Ha, haha, hahaha aaahhh...! A-all of a sudden, my knees won't stop shaking...

Da Vinci: Oopsies. Looks like the adrenaline finally wore off.

Da Vinci: I guess the rest of us'll just have to take it from here...

Da Vinci: But in the meantime, great job, Director Goredolf! You really saved our asses!

Limbo: Tch. We can't target the Border directly now that it's hiding in that thing's shadow...But no matter!

Limbo: We may not know what it is they're after, but whatever it is clearly has something to do with the Skyboulder!

Limbo: Therefore, the answer is obvious! All you need do is focus your godly power on breaking it apart!

Limbo: Even if the Skyboulder has endured your cataclysms up to this point, a being of your abilities should still be able to destroy it if you focus solely on–

God Arjuna: ...

God Arjuna: ...The Skyboulder...? What is that...?

Limbo: !

Limbo: Does this couldn't see it all this time!? All because it's been here from the beginning!?

Limbo: Mmm...Now what to do...

Narration: I've started to get a little bored.

Narration: But, I'm still fine. Totally, totally fine.

Narration: I can easily use my god powers to make new games or summon existing ones. I've got everything I need here. I can do whatever I want.

Narration: I've got role-playing games, strategy games, sim games, action games, puzzle games, adventure games, shooting games, racing games...I've got fantasy worlds, sci-fi worlds, historical worlds, modern-day worlds...

Narration: Video games are the pinnacle of human civilization. If you get tired of one, you can always move on to another.

Narration: Man, this is so much fun. I love grinding and leveling up. I love looking for rare items.

Narration: And if I run out of things to do, there's no end of different challenge runs to try. The sense of achievement I get from beating those is all the sweeter since I'm just doing them for their own sake. I'm having the time of my life here.

Narration: ...I stopped counting the days                forever ago.

Narration: ............................................................I'm bored.

Narration: I'm a moaning machine. A complaining machine. A tantrum-throwing machine. A crying machine.

Narration: My mind is completely empty. I don't even want to think about what I'm thinking about.

Narration: I just let my body do whatever it feels like at any given moment.

Narration: And since nobody's's that any different from a broken machine, repeating the same useless motion over and over?

Narration: ...Wait. What IS a machine?

Narration: Crap. This isn't good. I could end up freezing at any time. Better make sure my most important data's saved.

Narration: ...Not that it'll matter if I end up falling apart completely.

Narration: I think...       I'm remembering something unpleasant.

Narration: I won't move. I can't move. I don't want to move. I won't do anything. I don't want to do anything.

Narration: ......

Narration: ............

Narration: ...But...      I have to at least do what I came here for.

Narration: Why isn't there anybody here!?

Narration: Why won't anyone talk to me!? Why won't anyone respond to me!?

Narration: Why? Why!? Why!?!?!? WHY!?!?!?

Narration: Why am I...all alone...

Narration: Ngh...Ngggh...Gaaaaaah......Please...Somebody...Anybody...

Narration: with me...Don't leave me alone...

Narration: I don't want to be alone forever...

Narration:                 A

Narration: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Rama: (Huff, huff) At last...We can finally relieve them of their long duty...

Mash: That cube shuts out everything from the outside world...But there should be one key that can unlock it.

Mash: ...Go ahead, Master.

Narration: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Narration: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Narration: Somebody...              Save me.

Narration:                 Kill me.

Narration: ......

Narration: ............

Narration: No. Not yet. I can still. Keep going.    After all...

Narration: My old self...didn't have anything...

Narration: But my self here...already knows.

Narration: I don't even know...       ...who I am anymore...

Narration: But...I do know...this.

Narration: Even though...I'm nobody special...        there's someone...waiting for me.

Narration: There's someone who                believes in me.

Narration: And, besides...

Narration:                ...I promised.

Narration: ...? ...!?

Narration: ...Is that...            ...light?

Narration: Yes...Light.

Narration: I can hear something coming from it. Something far away...and familiar...

Narration: “■■■■■■”

Narration: Yes. That's it.

Narration: That's the one thing...I never forgot...The one thing...I've been waiting for...all this time...

Narration: A voice accepting me as I am.

Narration: [♂ He /♀ She] places [♂ his /♀ her] hand delicately upon the cube's surface.

Narration: [♂ He /♀ She] knew they couldn't possibly be fine with this. [♂ He /♀ She] knew they couldn't possibly be okay.

Narration: [♂ He /♀ She] knew all along...The two people waiting inside here...are both liars.

Narration: That's why this is a kind, oh so gentle mass of lies. A wall of determination erected by the two people inside who decided to fight by lying.

Narration: [♂ He /♀ She] takes a deep breath, and readies the reunion password in [♂ his /♀ her] mind.

Narration: The password they agreed on mere moments/eons tell them their job is finally over.

Fujimaru 1: “Even shut-ins...”

Fujimaru 1: “...are allowed to see the sky. ”

Rama: Easy there.

Lakshmi: ...Ngh...

Lakshmi: How many centuries...millennia...has it been...?

Rama: I can't say. None of us have any idea how long you spent like that.

Rama: But I do know your long, painful journey was a success. You should feel proud about that.

Lakshmi: You're...Rama...That's right. I remember now.

Lakshmi: ...Forgive me. It's been so long since I took human form, I can't seem to stand up straight...

Rama: That's all right. You can lean on my shoulder as long as you need.

Lakshmi: I recall, the that, you're married...

Rama: What's wrong with helping a woman who can barely stand? Sita would never have a problem with that.

Rama: Besides, Alakshmi is Lakshmi's sister,which also makes you Sita's sister.

Rama: Surely there can't be anything wrong with a man caring for his sister-in-law.

Captain: (...Welcome back, Lakshmi Bai. It's good to see you again like this. )

Captain: (This time, at least...But, I still...)

Da Vinci: Lakshmi's okay!

Da Vinci: But of course, her job was to be the outer shell,and to use her Divine Core as a source of pure energy.

Da Vinci: The mental strain on her should have been relatively light, since she spent all that time as an inanimate object.

Da Vinci: ...What about Ganesha?

Da Vinci: She had to stay conscious the entire time to keep their combined Noble Phantasm domain going! What about her!?

Da Vinci: She might be a god, but she was still in there alone for what must have felt like an eternity. She could easily have had a mental breakdown!

Fujimaru 1: A-are you okay!?

Fujimaru 2: Talk to us, Ganesha!

Ganesha: ...Nn. Nnn...

Ganesha: You', right. I wrote it down in the notes in my save data file so I wouldn't forget...

Ganesha: ...Fujimaru. That's right. You're Fujimaru.

Ganesha: Now, I just use that as the key to use my godly wisdom power and reload my memories, and...

Ganesha: ...

Ganesha: Ah! I remember! I remember now. Oh man, what took you guys so loooong?

Mash: I-I'm so sorry...Are you okay? Is your mind still intact?

Ganesha: Hehe. Well, more or less. Trust me, if anyone can handle being in a tiny room alone for a long time, it's a top-tier NEET like me!

Ganesha: 'Course, my body's pretty much useless right now.

Ganesha: I'm sorry your Master's been saddled with holding me and all my excess padding up.

Ganesha: Oh, but...I knew it.

Mash: (Huh? Is she looking past us...? )

Mash: (Is there something...No...)

Mash: (Someone there...? )

Ganesha: ...Yeah. That's right.

Ganesha: Maybe the only reason I was able to hang in there...was because of what he asked me back then.

Ganesha: ...Hehe.

Ganesha: After all...I couldn't break my promise, could I?


Holmes: Now that Ganesha and Lakshmi's existences have been confirmed here...

Holmes: ...we have proven beyond all doubt that Arjuna is not a perfect god.

Holmes: And because they have proven his flawed nature by enduring his massive world-undoing cataclysms...

Holmes: ...the resulting drop in his divine power must be severe indeed.

Aśvatthāman: Good. It worked so damn well I skipped being happy and went right back to unyielding rage!

Aśvatthāman: What's more, Arjuna's basically cursed now. Since I sent them back to the past...

Aśvatthāman: ...all that time they spent here only reinforces the concept that any god who could miss something like this for so long MUST be defective.

Koyanskaya: I see. To put it another way, it's as though a loan someone forgot to put on the books has finally come due.

Koyanskaya: And now that we've proven that loan exists, we have the right to charge an exorbitant amount in interest...

Koyanskaya: Hehe, this should make for a spectacular show. There's nothing more exciting than a rival company on the verge of bankruptcy.

Fou: Fou, biffooou!

Peperoncino: Now we should be able to actually hurt him, huh. Though that's not to say he's going to be an easy opponent.

Holmes: Just a moment. As I see it, part of my job is keeping an eye on things that Fujimaru's group can't.

Holmes: And right now...that would be you.

Peperoncino: Aśvatthāman!? Nooo!

Holmes: ...You're ending your own life here. Why?

Aśvatthāman: Ugh, you guys piss me off. Can't you tell, dammit? There's several reasons.

Aśvatthāman: First, I had to push myself way too hard to use Shiva's power to send those two back in time.

Aśvatthāman: Second, I'm still technically Arjuna's Servant. If worse comes to worst, he could end up making me hurt you guys.

Aśvatthāman: And finally...there's no point keeping anyone around who can't fight worth a damn. 'Course, it pisses me the hell off.

Aśvatthāman: Don't worry. The moment those two were freed...The moment this world's destiny was thrown for a loop...I'd already done what I could.

Aśvatthāman: And by that, I mean my Spirit Core should still be good for something.

Aśvatthāman: Truth be told, I was already pretty much a shadow of myself by the time we got here.

Peperoncino: I know there's no point in saying this now...

Peperoncino: ...but Fujimaru thought [♂ he /♀ she] would get to fight beside you right to the end.

Peperoncino: I can tell you, [♂ he's /♀ she's] going to be real disappointed.

Aśvatthāman: Ha. Well, who knows? Maybe [♂ he'll /♀ she'll]end up summoning me [♂ himself /♀ herself] one day.

Holmes: That would be most encouraging. You are truly a dependable Servant.

Holmes: In the future, Fujimaru there is bound to bear witness to any number of scenes where [♂ he /♀ she] will be forced to stand back and bite [♂ his /♀ her] tongue, no matter how angry [♂ he /♀ she] may wish to get.

Holmes: If you could be there by [♂ his /♀ her] side at times like that,I think that would mean a great deal indeed.

Aśvatthāman: Heh. Guess you really do know the only kind of role I'm cut out to play.

Aśvatthāman: As for you, ex-Master...You're the one who originally summoned me, so...sorry I couldn't be of more help to you.

Aśvatthāman: I was supposed to be your Servant, but boy did I ever fail at that. You've still got every right to be angry at me.

Peperoncino: Hehe, I'm not angry. I know you couldn't help it. Believe me, I understand that sort of thing all too well.

Peperoncino: Maybe, if I could get angry or upset on your behalf...

Peperoncino:'d help you feel more appreciated as a Servant...

Peperoncino: But, I just can't. I don't know how to live my life that way. Sorry.

Aśvatthāman: The way you live your life, huh...While we're on the subject, let me say this: I was still your Servant for a while, so I know this much about you.

Aśvatthāman: You might think you've lost your way, and that you don't deserve to be thought of as human anymore.

Aśvatthāman: ...But you're wrong. I think you put your foot right through the path you were headed down...

Aśvatthāman: make extra damn sure you wouldn't get lost on it.

Aśvatthāman: Maybe I don't have any right to say this, seeing how I snuck in and massacred all those people in the dead of night, but my comrades were all a bunch of good-for-nothings too.

Aśvatthāman: Especially Duryodhana and the other hundred princes...Though they were still good guys at heart.

Aśvatthāman: Anyway, I think they were fine just the way they were.

Aśvatthāman: They might've been good-for-nothings, but they lived their lives the best they could. I think that's all anyone can do.

Peperoncino: Yeah, I know. There's no right or wrong when it comes to living your life.

Peperoncino: But still, when you're born on the outside looking in on the world, there's not a whole lot you can do, right?

Peperoncino: So, I get it. It's one of those things that just can't be helped.

Peperoncino: It's not worth complaining about to anyone, and it's not worth asserting my rights over either.

Peperoncino: I just...can't help but think it's a shame that this world sometimes ends up producing outcasts like me.

Aśvatthāman: Man...Your resignation really colors everything in your life, doesn't it?

Aśvatthāman: That's why you feel bad for the world's lack of tolerance instead of for yourself. It's why you're appalled by human society's failure to help people like you.

Aśvatthāman: But you know, it takes a big person to think like that, too. I don't have a problem with it. Hell, I wouldn't have a job without it.

Aśvatthāman: Who knows? Maybe I'll end up running into you again someday as well.

Aśvatthāman: I'm sure you already know this, but as a Servant, I'm not good for much except being a fiery ball of endless fury.

Aśvatthāman: But...if you still haven't learned your lesson, and end up as my Master again someday...

Aśvatthāman: ...I'll make sure to make up for your lack of fire by getting good and angry on your behalf.

Aśvatthāman: Even if you aren't able to muster up any anger on your own about the world's injustices, I've got rage enough for both of us.

Aśvatthāman: ...I think that's what I'm meant to do.

Peperoncino: Hehe. Well thank you, Aśvatthāman. That'll give me something to look forward to.

Aśvatthāman: Ha...Well, glad I got all that off my chest. I'm counting on all of you to take care of the rest.

Aśvatthāman: And by the rest, I mean the guy taking my place.

Aśvatthāman: I'm pretty sure you already know this, but he's not exactly the most graceful guy around.

Aśvatthāman: I knew it. I figured I'd find you here. Really pisses me off that you've been slacking.

???: ...I have not been slacking off.

Aśvatthāman: I know that. I'm guessing this is the end...The place where Arjuna sends all the so-called failures he erases.

Aśvatthāman: A big old trash heap with no shape or form. Just different concepts floating around every which way.

Aśvatthāman: I figured you must still be drifting around here back when I saw you turn into Surya's light itself.

???: Of course you knew. You were the one who said that.

Aśvatthāman: Ugh, is there anyone more tightly wound than you? Freakin' infuriating.

???: ...

Aśvatthāman: All right then, let's do this. We've only got a moment to pull it off...even if time is basically meaningless here.

Aśvatthāman: Here's what's gonna happen. I'm gonna use everything I've got to pull you out of here, and you're gonna use everything you've got to climb the hell out.

???: What do I have to do?

Aśvatthāman: It's easy. All we gotta do is be ourselves. Long as we do that, we should be able to connect.

???: ...All right. Let's do it.

???: If there is no concept of time here, all the better. I want to keep going until I'm satisfied.

???: If the time we experience here has no meaning,that means we can use as much of it as we like.

???: So why just go back as I am now if I could use this time to train and get even stronger?

Aśvatthāman: The hell? At any moment of existing in this space, we could be torn to shreds, and you wanna TRAIN here!? What the hell is WRONG with you!?

???: I'm just going to do the same thing Arjuna did.

???: Now that I know how far he pushed himself,I have to do the same to meet him on even ground.

Aśvatthāman: The same thing he did...?

???: He must have put himself through tremendous hardships before he reached his current state.

???: It's one thing to say he collected every Indian Divinity into himself, and another altogether to actually do so.

???: He may rule this land now, but he has not transcended its bonds. His current state is the answer he arrived at after countless hard decisions and tribulations.

???: In which case, it would be the height of rudeness to challenge him as my ordinary self.

???: So I will put myself through the same ordeals he did as a sign of respect...and of despair.

???: I will only challenge him once I have pushed myself as far as I possibly can. As his brother, I owe him no less.

???: And you are going to help me get there, Aśvatthāman.

Aśvatthāman: Ha...You're too damn good for you own good, you know that? Irritating as hell. But then, I guess that's just how you've always been, isn't it?

Aśvatthāman: All right, fine. I'm the one who came to get you, so I guess I've got a responsibility to see this through to the end. If you want to do this thing, we'll keep at it until you're good and satisfied.

Aśvatthāman: Come to think of it, I guess not caring about time is something you and the guy outside got in common...I can't tell if you're a good match for each other or not.

Aśvatthāman: ...All right, here I come, Hero of Benefaction! Get ready for a world of pain!


Aśvatthāman: What's the score up to? I lost count in the high thousands.

Aśvatthāman: Dammit...It pisses me the hell off how strong you are!

???: You are impressively strong yourself. I truly think you are one of the strongest warriors I have met.

Aśvatthāman: Well? Did you do everything you wanted?

???: I did.

Aśvatthāman: Then I guess you got nothing to worry about. There's only one thing left to say now.

Aśvatthāman: Let's go fight together again. I'll even let you borrow me.

???: ...Thank you. I accept with gratitude.

Aśvatthāman: Ha. That's what I like to hear. Now hurry up.

???: Thank you, my friend.

???: Your anger may be defective and improper...

???: ...but there are still some lost hopes that only it can save...

Goredolf: Wha...What's going on?

Goredolf: No way. Is that...!?

Da Vinci: Aśvatthāman's Spirit Origin was at its limit.

Da Vinci: Even if his connection to Shiva did let him interfere with time, he still had to sacrifice a lot to pull it off.

Da Vinci: So he chose to burn freely so he could leave his Spirit Core behind...

Da Vinci: ...all so he could take advantage of the moment when Arjuna's fallibility was proven beyond all doubt.

Da Vinci: Because he believed that by doing so, a certain someone would come back, using his Spirit Core as an anchor...

Rama: What!?

Lakshmi: ...!

Peperoncino: ...

Holmes: That's right. The possibility was always there.

Holmes: Would Arjuna ever absorb him,and make him a part of himself?

Holmes: Absolutely not.

Holmes: Even if he did possess Divinity, he is the one being Arjuna would almost certainly refuse to absorb.

Holmes: After all...

Holmes: Oh, my apologies. It would seem that the time is not yet right to speak of that.

Mash: Ah...Aah...!

Mash: M-Master, look. Behind you...

Fujimaru 1: ...!

Ganesha: ...Ahaha. Honestly, it was really, really hard waiting for hundreds and thousands of years.

Ganesha: But, you did say we would be sure to meet again. That's a promise in my book.

Ganesha: I mean, after all...

Ganesha: I knew that you of all people would never, ever lie.

Karna: ...And so we have met again.

Karna: You did wonderfully, Jinako Carigiri. Absolutely wonderful.

Karna: I can tell you've grown since we last met. Your face is now as full of life as a beautiful spring flower.

Section 19: The Final Dark God

Fujimaru 1: Karna!

Fujimaru 2: Welcome back!

Karna: I'm sorry it took me so long to return, Master.

Karna: Hm...? What did I just say?

Karna: I feel as though I said something I couldn't possibly know...

Ganesha: Eh, happens to everyone now and then. Don't sweat it!

Ganesha: Besides, we've got much bigger things to worry about. Like bringing you up to speed on what's going on right now.

Karna: Fortunately, I already have a fairly good idea of that.

Karna: My memories are...a little muddled,but they remain unbroken.

Karna: Aśvatthāman's Spirit Core has given me the gist of everything that transpired while I was gone.

Karna: ...It would seem the time has come to settle things.

God Arjuna:!

Ganesha: I'm afraid I'm not gonna be much help. As you can see, I'm all tuckered out.

Karna: That won't be a problem. Aśvatthāman lent me more than just his Spirit Core.

Karna: For the time being...I can also use Shiva's power,at least to a certain extent.

Holmes: I see...So you inherited Aśvatthāman's traits when you took over his Spirit Core!

Karna: Of course, this power won't last forever.

Karna: But I should be sufficiently familiar with it by now to hold onto it for a while, after all those duels we had.

Peperoncino: Well this is all great news, for sure. But we've still got a long way to go, given who we're up against.

Peperoncino: ...Speak of the devil.

God Arjuna: ...

Karna: Arjuna. We can do this down here, or up there. The choice is yours.

God Arjuna: ...

Mash: He came down!

God Arjuna: ...Karna...I know you. You're...Karna...

Karna: Yes, I am. And now, I'm going to defeat you.

God Arjuna: ...Why? Why do you...oppose me...?

God Arjuna: You were there...too...You witnessed...that foolish war...just as I did...

God Arjuna: I'm purging evil...from the world. Everything that is defective...and unnecessary...

God Arjuna: That is...the blade of justice...I guide this world...

God Arjuna: My proper and every way...

Fujimaru 1: Now the ground is shaking!?

Fujimaru 2: What's going on with the sky...?

God Arjuna: This is...the proof. The end...of the final yuga...when justice...reaches its apex.

God Arjuna: A perfect world...of peace and now...close at hand...

Karna: I have not seen for myself whether this world is what you say, so I will not speak to that.

Karna: I will instead let those whom I trust speak for me.

Fujimaru 1: There's nothing right about this world.

Peperoncino: Short and to the point. I like it.

Fujimaru 2: This world is so right it's wrong.

Peperoncino: Hehe, well there's an interesting viewpoint. Maybe you could even say the same about people.

Peperoncino: After all, someone who only knows what's right inevitably ends up doing the wrong thing.

Holmes: Allow me to refute your premise by substituting“the world” for “civilization. ”

Holmes: Civilizations roots must logically lie in humanity,not gods.

Holmes: This world may be refined as a result of you whittling away the people you deemed defective, but its civilization has not advanced one iota.

Holmes: Any philosophy that would lead to what we see here has its priorities completely backwards.

God Arjuna: I can't...understand...You speak...nonsense. You are defective, unnecessary...and therefore, evil...

Limbo: Mmm...Indeed, indeed!

Limbo: The time has clearly come for you to pass judgment on these wicked fools yourself.

Koyanskaya: Well, well, look who just couldn't resist putting in an appearance. I guess that was inevitable though, this god being your last bastion and all.

Fujimaru 1: (I've seen that Servant before...! )

Fujimaru 2: (That's the Caster from Shimousa...! )

Mash: Master...? Do you recognize him?

Holmes: I'm quite certain [♂ he /♀ she] does.

Holmes: That Servant matches the description of a hostile entity [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru encountered in the parallel world of Shimousa.

Holmes: Though looking back on it now, it would seem that Shimousa was actually a small Lostbelt in its own right.

Holmes: At any rate, although that Servant went by Caster of Limbo...the one we see here now is an Alter Ego.

Holmes: You there. I trust you are also a Disciple of the Foreign God, just like Rasputin?

Holmes: I believe you said your name was Abe-no-Seimei,one of Japan's greatest onmyouji?

Limbo: Mm. Mmm. Mmmmmm! What a dreadful thing to say!

Limbo: No righteous Chaldean Servant should be quite so devious! You really should know better, Lord Detective.

Limbo: It's one thing to joke, but quite another to merely play along with my using an alias just to put the screws to me.

Limbo: Dreadful, simply dreadful. What was it again? Abe-no-Seimei?

Limbo: True, that cowardly schemer is certainly an acquaintance of mine, so I'm not completely unfamiliar with his name...

Limbo: But my name is simply Limbo, Lord Sherlock Holmes,and I would ask you address me thusly.

Limbo: And yes, as you surmised, I am indeed one of the three Alter Egos who serve the Foreign God!

Limbo: I am the one who made the first move to prepare for the coming of the Trees of Emptiness...

Limbo: ...and turned Shimousa into hell to test a pet theory of mine!

Mash: Then...That's the Servant who's been leading Arjuna down this path...?

Mash: Koyanskaya, can you tell us anything more about...Huh?

Koyanskaya: “Sorry, we've closed for the day☆We look forward to your business in the future♡”

Mash: Koyanskaya's gone! The only trace she left behind is this note!

Limbo: Indeed, indeed! I'm certain she had no other choice but to make her escape!

Limbo: It is absolutely unforgivable to side with Chaldea, no matter the circumstances!

Limbo: That said, I am not entirely heartless. I see no need to go out of my way to report her misdeeds to the Foreign God.

Limbo: Now that she is nowhere to be seen,there is no proof that she helped you.

Limbo: Mmm, I think we can leave it at that.

Holmes: (I suppose it was inevitable her injuries would heal now that she's had time to rest...Oh well. )

Holmes: (I'll have to think of a way to capture her for good some other time...)

Holmes: Very well then: Limbo, you must be the Servant who has been serving as Arjuna's military advisor of sorts.

Holmes: Now that you're showing yourself after hiding away all this time...

Holmes: ...does that mean you no longer had any other choice?

Limbo: Hardly. My appearance here is merely a matter of courtesy.

Limbo: It is not yet time for me to get my own hands dirty.

Limbo: Although...

Limbo: If you absolutely insist, I think I can manage a few tricks of my own!

Limbo: Humbled as I am to be the opening act to this world's god, if I must, I must! Hahahahaha!

Peperoncino: Looks to me like you want to keep clear of danger as much as possible.

Limbo: Oh no, no! All I want is to see what's about to happen up close and personal!

Limbo: Hehe, hehehehehehe!

Holmes: (This world's sudden drastic change must be due to its situation making significant forward progress...)

Holmes: (Either that, or it's starting to come apart at the seams now that the end is near! )

Holmes: (If Limbo's goal is to see what happens after that, he may even have been pulling Arjuna's strings up to this point...)

Holmes: ...No, never mind that. Right now, all I can say for sure is that we have no time to waste.

Holmes: We need to eliminate Arjuna and Limbo as quickly as possible.

Holmes: Should we fail to do so, this world will play host to a dreadful, fatal event.

Holmes: And it is clear from Limbo's barely restrained delight that there will be no coming back from whatever it is.

Holmes: I believe we can leave Arjuna to Karna. The rest of you, please focus on Limbo!

Lakshmi: I can use keep the nearby...sacred beasts away.

Fujimaru 1: Are you all right, Lakshmi?

Fujimaru 2: You okay?

Lakshmi: Of course. Now that I've come this far, I finally understand...

Lakshmi: The kali are both a part of this world,and its last form of resistance.

Lakshmi: They are creatures apart from god,born to fight against order.

Lakshmi: Perhaps that is the reason why I...why Alakshmi was summoned here.

Lakshmi: So that I could help them.

Lakshmi: Heh...Some queen I turned out to be. Once a rebel leader, always a rebel leader!

Lakshmi: We'll handle the sacred beasts. The only enemies the rest of you need to worry about are those two.

Lakshmi: I'm counting on you, Fujimaru!

Mash: Arjuna is no longer a god we can only look up at from afar.

Mash: He's now destruction incarnate, and we have to stop him no matter what! Let's go get him, Master!


Karna: What incredible power. Even with Shiva's godly strength, I still can't manage to harm you.

God Arjuna: Godly...Yes. For I am...god.

God Arjuna: I have consumed all other Divinities, and brought them together to become a single, perfect god.

God Arjuna: Karna...Son of Surya, wielder of Shiva's strength...

God Arjuna: If you wish to stand in my way...that is fine.

God Arjuna: As a truly perfect god, it will be simple for me to trample over you...

Karna: ...You claim to be perfect? Then let me ask you this.

Karna: Why did you consume the gods in the first place? What did you want with so much power?

Karna: I am sure you sought to create a just world, but I know that Arjuna would never choose such an inhumane path towards it.

Karna: Someone else must have done so instead. Who?

God Arjuna: ...!

Karna: You need not answer. I know that, too.

Karna: The king of the Yadavas, Vāsudeva, was not the same man as the Krishna who was an avatar of Vishnu...yet they shared a name nonetheless.

Karna: On that day, it was not Arjuna, but the dark Krishna inside him who aimed that arrow at me.

Karna: The same is now true for you, isn't it? Deep down, you are not Arjuna, but that dark Krishna, aren't you?

God Arjuna: ...

Karna: I don't know why it happened, but I can see that your inner qualities were somehow inverted...

Karna: ...and what you are now is the result of that avarice taking control and greedily consuming all the other Divinities.

Karna: When I look at you, I do not see a perfect god. Far from it.

Karna: You have been irrevocably altered into a man who is both Arjuna, and not Arjuna. Nothing more.

Arjuna: Ghh...I'm...?

Holmes: That got to him. Could this be the last push we need?

Da Vinci: I don't know. It doesn't look like he's gonna make it that easy for us!

Limbo: Oh, no, no, this won't do at all. Calm yourself. To be a perfect god, one must have power above all else.

Limbo: You became what you are by following your greed. It is only right that you continue to do so.

Limbo: If you have concerns about your godhood,then allow me, your humble servant...

Limbo: present you with new power from the truly right and proper god.

Limbo: Now then...shall we begin?

God Arjuna: ...

Holmes: Arjuna's run off!

Holmes: There is no question of where he is heading. There's only one thing left that he could rely on for help.

Da Vinci: Get in the Border, guys! We're going after him full speed ahead!


Fujimaru 1: Is that...!?

Mash: It's the Indian Tree of Emptiness! But what's that strangely colored lake surrounding it!?

Peperoncino: What's going on? That lake wasn't there when I first got here!

Holmes: These readings...Now I see. I knew this was no ordinary water, but I would never have guessed that it could be...this...

Ganesha: You figured out what it is? Then why aren't you JUST TELLING US ALREADY!?

Holmes: I was just getting to that. Don't worry, I have no intention of falling back on bad habits now.

Holmes: I understand you have no need for a detailed analysis at this point, so in lieu of that, I will simply say this:

Holmes: I believe that is the ocean of milk.

Peperoncino: The ocean of milk...? You mean, the one from the Samudra Manthana in the Hindu creation myth?

Holmes: The very same.

Rama: That's the one where Vishnu, the other gods, and even the Asuras all worked together to create a nectar of immortality.

Rama: The ocean of milk is also said to be where the sun and moon come from...though I doubt that's what Arjuna wants to do with it now.

Goredolf: Well, if it's only an ocean of milk,we should be able to cross it, no?

Holmes: I'm afraid that would be rather difficult.

Fujimaru 1: But why!?

Fujimaru 2: Why's that?

Holmes: It's highly poisonous. I've only done a quick scan so far, but I can already tell it's strong enough to easily melt through steel, a human body, or even a spiritual body.

Holmes: While the Border is sealed tightly enough that we could theoretically attempt to barrel through it...

Holmes: ...we would be unlikely to get far before the Border started to dissolve.

Rama: I see. So this is Halāhala...the poison Vāsuki the serpent king vomited forth from the pain of being used like a rope to churn the milk. And Arjuna apparently chose to leave it mixed in.

Peperoncino: In the myth, Shiva becomes known as the Nilakanta of the blue throat because he gets rid of the poison by drinking it, but...

Karna: I'm only borrowing Shiva's power; I don't know if I can do the same. Though I could jump over it and get to the tree by myself.

Holmes: I don't recommend that. Given what happened earlier, it's likely Arjuna came here to receive some form of support from the Tree of Emptiness.

Holmes: Our only hope now is to hit him with everything we've got. Letting him pick us off individually now would be the height of folly.

Mash: Th-then what can we do?

Holmes: Well–

Meunière: Whatever it is, do you think you can hurry and figure it out before all those sacred beasts catch up with us!?

Lakshmi: ...All right. I'll figure something out.

Fujimaru 1: ...Like what?

Lakshmi: I doubt I can erase the Halāhala...

Lakshmi: ...but both Lakshmi and Alakshmi were born when the ocean of milk was churned. I am sure I can do something.

Lakshmi: If I concentrate my misfortune around me, like I did when I drew all of William Tell's arrows...

Lakshmi: ...I might be able to limit the poison's effects to myself.

Mash: But, that would mean...!

Lakshmi: There is no other wa–

Captain: This is ridiculous. Just ridiculous.

Fujimaru 1: Captain?

Captain: You're just using your bad luck as an excuse to take the easy way out. It's the cheapest form of self-sacrifice.

Captain: No soldier, hell, no person at all has any business doing that.

Captain: Did you ever stop to think about what it's like for those of us left behind?

Captain: To hear you praised for dying like a saint,like your death is something to celebrate?

Captain: ...You never stop wondering what might have happened. If only you hadn't let her fight alone. If only you'd stayed behind, instead of running away...

Lakshmi: I knew it...It IS you...

Captain: ...Yeah, it's me. I didn't experience these things myself, but these regrets ended up becoming core to who I am.

Captain: That other version of me–the one who would go on to become a ship captain–fought in the sepoy rebellion, lost someone important to him...

Captain: ...and unlike you, who stayed and fought to the very end, he ran away like a coward.

Captain: We may have fought in very different regions...and neither of us may have been in a position to influence the other's battles...

Captain: ...but after being inspired by the rumors I heard about you, and knowing we were fighting at the same time, I can't help but feel a connection...

Lakshmi: ...The path I took was the only one available to me. I'm not going to judge you for the choices you made. There is nothing whatsoever wrong with choosing to survive.

Lakshmi: It is no different now. There is something I need to do, and I'm the only one who can do that's what I'm going to do. That's all there is to it!

Captain: ...No. That's not all there is to it.

Lakshmi: Huh?

Captain: What I'm trying to say is, that wasn't the only way then, and it isn't now, either. You need to pay more attention to your surroundings.

Fujimaru 1: Do you have something in mind, Captain?

Captain: Yeah, I do. I wouldn't have said all that otherwise. Though I kind of hate how this is playing out just like Sion said it would.

Captain: Da Vinci, I need you to grant me authority. You've already figured out why I came along, right?

Captain: Well, now's the time. Much as I'd rather not do this, I suppose I must.

Da Vinci: I knew you were sneaking around doing something. Does this mean we're finally going to get some answers?

Captain: ...(Sigh) I wish I could've just stuck to maintenance. Initiating a naval battle of my own accord is really hard.

Captain: But as hard as that is, letting another far-off comrade in arms go to her death would be even harder.

Captain: This thing manifests whenever I accept that this is just the sort of Phantom Spirit I am.

Captain: Sion secretly installed it inside this ship.

Holmes: Hmm. Does this thing you speak of have something to do with the part that was meant to be activated in India?

Captain: ...Yeah, I guess so. It's kind of like a system that makes this trial fitting possible.

Holmes: I only have one question. Will this thing you speak of let us get across this poisonous ocean of milk?

Captain: I think so. You should all know what I'm talking about, too.

Captain: Sion isn't just trying to improve the Border. She's trying to improve me, too.

Captain: Because you're going to need both of us if you're going to cross that stormy ocean.

Captain: Well, maybe not me so much as my ship.

Captain: My ship is a dream of the future made real. A high tech concept once considered a mere flight of fancy.

Captain: It's called the Nautilus, a ship of hope that can conquer any sea in the world, no matter how deep.

Captain: Aw yeah! If we're gonna do this thing, let's DO this thing!

Captain: No more holding back for me! Every good ship's gotta have good waters to sail!

Captain: Okay crew, get to your posts! Any back talk, even from Master, and you'll be swabbing the poop deck for a month!

Fujimaru 1: Where'd all this come from!?

Fujimaru 2: When did you get so upbeat!?

Captain: Why wouldn't I be excited!? I've been waiting to go on my maiden voyage since I got summoned!

Captain: Imaginary Aronnax Phantasm rigging...all set!

Captain: Connecting lines to my Spirit Origin and giving them power!

Captain: Okay, that's all of my Noble Phantasm's magical energy. And I'll make sure the Border doesn't feel a thing!

Goredolf: Wh-wh-what is this!? What's going on!? You're not about to explode on us, are you!?

Mash: It looks like...a mysterious light is surrounding the Border, starting at the front...

Holmes: The front, you say? As opposed to the drivetrain, or the engine...?

Holmes: By Jove, I've got it! The Aronnax Phantasm is a naval ram, the Nautilus's most famous feature!

Captain: Right you are. My Nautilus was known far and wide as a monster of a ship.

Captain: And by attaching its naval ram to a vessel, other ships can be retroactively defined as the Nautilus too!

Fujimaru 1: I knew it! Then your True Name is–

Captain: Hehe. But that's not all.

Karna: Indeed, it's not. Now that you've come out of your shell, I can sense the Western god inside you.

Captain: That's right. I am the great Triton, son of Poseidon, the Greek god of the sea! The deep seas are my beloved domain!

Captain: And I'm also Captain Nemo, the lone sailor who fights against oppression and tyranny wherever he goes!

Da Vinci: Aha! I KNEW you were an amalgamation Servant! But wow, those are some big names to combine!

Holmes: I see...Ms. Sion had already admitted you were a Phantom Spirit. She must have intentionally combined an ancient Mystic with a newer legend...

Nemo: I'm the “no one” called Nemo. The guardian of sea travelers who can chart a course through any ocean.

Mash: A guardian...Now that you mention it, this warmth I'm sensing feels...familiar...

Meunière: No way! Am I reading this right!?

Da Vinci: What is it, Meunière!?

Goredolf: An explosion? It's an explosion, isn't it?

Goredolf: Dammit! I knew I shouldn't have let some pip-squeak from who knows where mess around with my Border!

Meunière: No, no, it's not an explosion! I just noticed this fixed wavelength in the Border's data! It's almost identical to the thing we observed back during our Zero Sail on the way to Scandinavia!

Goredolf: What!? Then, that strange entity we encountered back then was actually...!?

Nemo: Yes, that was my true Nautilus. I was out on patrol there on Sion's orders.

Nemo: I think I remember giving you a little nudge in the right direction when I spotted you guys there.

Holmes: Now I see. If Mr. Goredolf hadn't had us make an emergency exit in his panic...

Holmes: ...we might have benefited from your guidance even more.

Goredolf: W-well how was I supposed to know any better at the time!?

Da Vinci: While I'd love to dig into these new revelations about your ship and the Atlas Institute's Zero Sail technology...

Da Vinci: ...right now, we still have to worry about this ship! How's it looking?

Nemo: It's doing great. I've had my eye on it for a while now, and it's turning out to be just as good a ship as I thought. Better, even!

Nemo: I'm a Phantom Spirit, not a typical Servant. My entire reason for being is my love of the sea.

Nemo: So when I was summoned to this earth without a decent body of water anywhere to be seen, and told to lend my aid to humanity, well...

Nemo: Honestly, I was pretty upset. Sion's nice and all, but she's not really human.

Nemo: And the Wandering Sea may be a sea, but there's no life to be found in it anywhere.

Nemo: So when you Chaldeans showed up...I didn't have high hopes for you all, either.

Nemo: I figured modern people must be to blame for the Earth ending up like this.

Nemo: But now that I've seen you in action here in India...

Nemo: ...I can tell you're the kind of good people I remember.

Nemo: You're travelers who keep rowing forward no matter how roughly the seas toss your ship.

Nemo: No matter what kind of predicament you encounter, or what kind of enemy you go up against, you're the kind of people who can smile and laugh about the experience when it's all over.

Nemo: So now that I know that, I'm done moping around. Besides, I also remembered that my Nemo side still has some unfinished business to take care of.

Nemo: So you'd better believe I'm going to help you out! I declare this here and now, as the guardian of voyages!

Nemo: From this point forward, this ship is no longer limited to the waters of Void Space!

Nemo: There is now no storm it can't cross,and no ocean it can't sail!

Nemo: Whether we're up against the sea of storms or a poisonous ocean of milk, you no longer have anything to fear!

Nemo: Now let's go! Full speed ahead!

Da Vinci: Well, if the world's most famous captain insists,I guess we'll just have to oblige! Let's do this thing!


Goredolf: Hold it! I still haven't given this the all clea–AAAH! A-are you sure we'll be okay!? We're not going to dissolve!?

Holmes: It would seem there is nothing to worry about. The Border's hull is holding strong against the poison.

Nemo: Heh, this is nothing compared to the time I hid inside an undersea volcano. We won't have any problem reaching land!

Nemo: Though that's not to say it doesn't sting a bit. Generally, when my ship is damaged, I hurt too.

Lakshmi: You don't have to do this...

Nemo: Don't worry about it, Lakshmi Bai. Not this time.

Nemo: Here, there are no cowards willing to send you off to your death just because you refuse to stop fighting when they've already given up.

Nemo: Of course, I ran away from the rebellion to build the Nautilus, so I might've been just as cowardly until now...

Nemo: ...But I'm not anymore. This time, I'm staying right here.

Nemo: I'm going to get you there safely, help you save these people, and fight at your side until the very end.

Lakshmi: ...You are a good man and a good friend, Captain Nemo. Thank you.

Nemo: ...All right, we're almost across the ocean of milk! No turning back now! Are you all ready to disembark!?

Fujimaru 1: You know it!

Fujimaru 2: It's time for the final battle!

Karna: Yes. This may not be strictly true, but I feel as though I have trained my fiery spear for thousands of years.

Karna: I WILL cut through Arjuna's mind, even if I have to use every bit of my essence for kindling.

Ganesha: I'll help out as much as I can, too. Though I'm still so exhausted that I think watching out for Rama is all I can do right now.

Rama: ...

Goredolf: Oh well, all right! At this point, I don't care how you go about it.

Goredolf: Go ahead and use every dirty trick in the book if you have to! Just make sure you take him down! Director's orders!

Peperoncino: Oh my, he's really going there, isn't he? It's almost impressive how low he's willing to sink!

Peperoncino: I could've sworn he was much cooler back when he was driving the Border. That sure didn't last...

Peperoncino: Maybe he's the type of guy who only really shines when the chips are down?

Nemo: We've made land! We can see the Tree of Emptiness with our naked eyes now!

Nemo: Go on and take the portside hatch out of here,Fujimaru! I'll lower the ramp now!

Nemo: Once you've all disembarked, I'll head back out and wait for you in the bay so the enemy can't attack the Border!

Nemo: Don't worry about holding anything back! As long as you win this battle, I promise I'll come and get you!

Nemo: Now go out there and settle this thing once and for all!

Mash: ...We will! Thank you, Captain Nemo!

Mash: Master Fujimaru, five Servants,and one allied Master...

Mash: ...preparing to enter the Indian Lostbelt's final phase on behalf of Proper Human History!

Fujimaru 1: The place is covered in...white flowers...?

Holmes: They would appear to be cluster amaryllises...known in some parts of the world as “flowers of heaven. ” The environmental readings appear stable, so they shouldn't pose any threat.

Da Vinci: Only eight hundred meters to go! The Indian Tree of Emptiness is right past that hill!

Da Vinci: Its heat signature is rising rapidly! Try to hurry as best you can, guys!

Mash: Understood! We'll continue to approach the Tree of Emptiness on foot!

Rama: (Ghh...It looks like this curse isn't getting any better with time, as I'd hoped it would...)

Rama: Then it seems I have no other choice. All of you, wait. I need to say something.

Ganesha: What's up, Rama?

Rama: I'm sure Arjuna will be waiting for us at the tree. Before we fight him again...I need to talk to you, Karna.

Karna: What is it, King of Kosala? You seem to be in poor health.

Rama: I am. That's why I have a request to make of you, son of Surya.

Rama: I want to entrust you with my Brahmastra.

Mash: Huh?

Karna: ...Your reasoning?

Rama: Ghh, argh...Surely you can see why for yourself.

Rama: My body is still suffering from Krishna's curse that I drew away from Aśvatthāman.

Rama: Frankly, I'll never be able to fight to the best of my ability like this. So this is all I can do.

Rama: While I do hate to do this, since it feels like I'm letting Fujimaru down as [♂ his /♀ her] Servant...a good king knows when to delegate.

Rama: As the son of Surya, and the one true hero who fought for the Kauravas, there is no one better suited to wield the Brahmastra in my place than you.

Karna: ...

Rama: Besides, no one in this world knows of my adventures. That fame, or lack of it in this case, makes it impossible for me to fight at my full strength even without the curse.

Karna: But the same holds true for me.

Rama: No, it doesn't. There's at least one person here who sees you differently.

Rama: See that? Those are the eyes of someone who knows deep down in her soul how heroic you truly are.

Rama: That makes you better suited than me to be a hero in this land. And so, my power is now yours.

Karna: ...

Rama: But be warned.

Rama: Now that Aśvatthāman has entrusted you with Shiva's power, and I have entrusted you with Vishnu's...

Rama: ...if you were to lose to Arjuna now, it would be an absolute disgrace!

Rama: Remember, he has my wife's goddess form in his possession! He holds within himself Alakshmi's younger sister. Alakshmi's wish to free her sister is in your hands now.

Rama: And so, I implore you, Karna: save Sita in my place!

Karna: ...!

Rama: Master, I'm sorry to ask your forgiveness rather than your permission, but is this all right with you?

Fujimaru 1: I second Rama's request.

Fujimaru 2: Please help us, Karna. We can't beat Arjuna without you.

Karna: What a strange thing to say, Master. I am your Servant. I answer to you, not the King of Kosala.

Karna: But, for now, I will humbly accept this great honor you have both entrusted to me, and swear to you this:

Karna: I will use all the power I have been given to see that Arjuna is brought to justice!

Ganesha: Bwaaa!!? ? Your hair! Your spear! They're totally different now!

Ganesha: I don't know what's going on, but it's freakin' badass! I can't put it any better than that!

Ganesha: You were already a sight for sore eyes before, but now those eyes are just popping out of their sockets!

Ganesha: This is so unfair! But I'm not complaining! Hell no!

Karna: I see. It's an honor to hear you think so highly of me, Ganesha.

Rama: I-I'm kind of taken aback by this myself,to be honest, but this is all for the good.

Rama: You are no longer merely borrowing my power, nor Aśvatthāman's.

Rama: This new form of yours is clearly the result of you making it your own. I could ask for nothing more.

Lakshmi: (What incredible power. I can't be certain it will be enough to defeat Arjuna...but it just might do the trick! )

Lakshmi: All right, no sense staying put any longer than we need. Let's go!

God Arjuna: ...

Mash: There he is!

God Arjuna:

Karna: Arjunaaa!!!


God Arjuna:!

Karna: Yes, it's me. Though I have changed a little since we last met.

Karna: This power is incredible. To think this is still only a fragment of Shiva and Vishnu's strength.

God Arjuna: I...see...Hehehe, now I see! So you have...also come becoming a perfect god!

God Arjuna: Good. That is how it should be. If you mean to stand in my way, that is exactly how it should be!

Karna: ...? What a strange thing to say.

God Arjuna: What...?

Karna: Neither of us is at all close to being a perfect god. That could not be clearer.

Karna: Would a perfect god be so fixated on my name,as you have been thus far?

Karna: That can only mean one thing...Your humanity is showing through.

God Arjuna: ...!!!

Karna: You are very much still human deep down inside, Arjuna. That is why we can do battle like this.

Karna: I, for one, am grateful that neither of us are gods. We are both warriors. Nothing more.

God Arjuna: bastard!

Limbo: Mmm, how very surprising! I never thought the Hero of Benefaction could cut so deep with but a few words!

Limbo: In that case, allow me the honor of stopping up this god's ears, so as to shield them from these wicked words!

Limbo: God! God! God of this land! If you feel as though you are still lacking...

Limbo: If you sense that what you have may still not be enough, then rest assured that I am here to ease your concerns!

Limbo: Behold...a benefaction from the one true god!

Limbo: Behold these stairs that link us to the skies! This texture that transforms everything into its rightful form!

Limbo: This Lostbelt may be yet another frail bastion for humanity, but its way of life is completely unique!

Limbo: In place of a future that expands ever outward, it has elected a future that narrows infinitely inward!

Limbo: Indeed, that is the one good thing about this Lostbelt! It will reach its end goal quicker that way.

Limbo: Turn, turn, turn! Every time the cycle turns, more is shaved off! Now, its destruction reaches a fever pitch!

Limbo: The roots of cosmic fantasy have descended upon us, and the Tree of Ideology has died! Hear me, foundation of a new world, and bloom!

Limbo: Your name is Tree of Emptiness Spiral! You are the many finite boundaries that surround this planet!

Goredolf: Th-the Tree of Emptiness...!

Mash: It's opening up even further! And not only that...!

Peperoncino: What is this!?

Holmes: This change in color...It seems to be like what we saw in China, only taken even further...?

Holmes: I don't know what this new black color means, but I believe the tree's structure remains identical to the one in China.

Holmes: That is to say, the Tree of Emptiness contained its own pocket dimension. Now, the Tree has opened up, exposing the galaxy inside.

Holmes: There's no time to analyze it further,and as of yet, no telling what it means.

Holmes: All I can say for certain at this that a tremendous amount of magical energy is flowing from it and into Arjuna!

Holmes: (Orochi. Sombrero. Mayall. And now, Spiral. As I suspected, they're all names of different galaxies. )

Holmes: (They must be weapons of invasion from other celestial bodies. But why invade like this? )

Holmes: (With that much sheer magical energy, they could just as easily incinerate the Earth's surface, as Goetia did. )

Holmes: (So why would our enemies go out of their way to model the trees after galaxies? Are they truly weapons of invasion? )

God Arjuna: Ahh...Haha, hahaha, hahahahaha!

God Arjuna: I feel just as powerful now as I did when I first absorbed the gods. No, even more so...!

Karna: It doesn't matter how much power you take in from elsewhere, Arjuna. This changes nothing.

Karna: ...Oh, right. I have been told that I have a tendency to say too little rather than too much, so let me be abundantly clear about this.

Karna: If the dark Krishna inside you truly has become who you are now...

Karna: ...then you yourself have become something you saw as defective, and you just haven't realized it yet.

Karna: Though, honestly, I never saw you as defective at all.

Karna: So let me ask you: What are your own deficiencies? What is your own evil?

Karna: Have you ever looked at yourself, and admitted that you might also have faults?

Karna: The Arjuna I know was no god, but he knew the value of taking a good, long look at himself.

God Arjuna: Looking...Yes...Like the way you're looking at me now.

God Arjuna: Stop that, Karna...Don't look at that...

Holmes: That's it. That was exactly the last piece we needed. Karna put it into place without even trying.

Holmes: A god is most vulnerable when they begin to question their own infallibility!

B:Arjuna: You're doing it again...Your eyes are trying to make me see something inside myself!

B:Arjuna: That is...a sin. It is evil. I must pass judgment on you...with my own hands!

B:Arjuna: Karnaaa!!!

Karna: The only thing I see now is the fact that you can no longer ignore my spear.

Karna: Now that you have abandoned that irksome detachment,I finally have the chance I've been waiting for.

Karna: It doesn't matter if you're a god. I will keep trying to surpass you, just as I always have!

Karna: Arjunaaa!!!


Mash: He...He did it, Master! Arjuna has been fatally wounded!

Arjuna: ...How?

Arjuna: I should have completely outclassed you! Even if you do have Shiva and Vishnu's power now, I have the power of every god!

Arjuna: Not only do I too have Shiva and Vishnu, I also have Agni, Indra, Brahma, Soma...All of them...!

Karna: You're still searching for a reason? You truly are a thickheaded man.

Karna: Very well then, I'll tell you why you lost...Though I'll admit, I too only realized this while we were fighting.

Karna: It is because you lack something crucial. Something that I possess, and you do not.

Arjuna: What...? That...that can't be. I possess every Divinity in the–

Karna: What you that.

Fujimaru 1: (Is Karna pointing at me...? )

Arjuna: ...!

Karna: That's right. Companions. To put it another way...a god is only a god if there are people who recognize them as such.

Karna: A god cannot be a god if they are all alone.

Karna: You grew dependent on power from beyond this world in the Tree of Emptiness, and wholly abandoned its people.

Karna: You may have become a nigh omnipotent god thanks to that power, able to create and destroy entirely by yourself...

Karna: ...but such a god is no god at all.

Karna: You must have known that yourself,even if you didn't realize it.

Arjuna: What...?

Karna: This Spirit Core informed me all about the last Lōkapāla, a fusion of god and man, more balanced than any other.

Arjuna:'re saying his was the strength of a god in tune with people?

Karna: It sounds like you know whom I mean.

Karna: Now that you understand,all that remains to say is this:

Karna: While I did not do so using solely my own strength...I won this time, Arjuna.

Arjuna: G-ghhh...Karna...!

Arjuna: This failure is...unacceptable...I've never humiliated...

Arjuna: ...Humiliated...?

Arjuna: ...

Karna: ...

Arjuna: Heh...Hehehe...

Arjuna: This frustration at my defeat is the sort of defective, useless, and unnecessary evil I sought to eliminate.

Arjuna: Haha! So what is it doing inside of me!?

Arjuna: Now I see. I was never a complete being to begin with...Of course not. I am too flawed to be a perfect god...

Arjuna: I only sought perfection, greedily, to my own detriment...To the point I no longer realized I was doing so.

Arjuna: You are right, Karna...It was the dark, greedy Krishna inside me...

Arjuna: The one who consumed even the gods, and tolerated no evil whatsoever...That is who I...

Arjuna: ...Now I understand why I lost. My blade of destruction could not be turned on myself.

Arjuna: No matter how many yuga cycles passed, my obsession with evil...would always remain.

Arjuna: It was that obsession that drove me to become a perfect god beyond what was necessary.

Arjuna: So the god I became–the final god, born of evil, who tried to guide his people toward a proper world...

Arjuna: ...still harbored a dreadful evil within his soul.

Arjuna: I probably should have tried to destroy that first, before I turned my focus to the world...

Karna: ...

Arjuna: Now, that evil I failed to destroy has become my own destruction...So foolish of me...

Karna: All I know is, a being like you could only have come about in a world like this.

Karna: You're one of this Lostbelt's victims, something that could only exist in the Pruning Theoretical Phenomenon.

Arjuna: I don't need your pity.

Karna: Pity? I don't pity you. I was just thinking what a great shame this is.

Karna: The Arjuna I truly aim to defeat is an ordinary man. He was never given the role of a god, final or otherwise.

Karna: But incomplete as he was, he never stopped seeking completion. I think that is who you were meant to be.

Karna: The world is no different. Once it is truly “complete,” there is nowhere left for it to go.

Karna: And having nowhere left to go...strikes me as woefully incomplete.

Arjuna: Ha...So it's a paradox. I believed I was complete, all while failing to notice the ways in which I was not.

Arjuna: What's more, believing myself complete was itself the seed of further deficiency.

Arjuna: Now I see. I was a walking paradox,right from the beginning.

Arjuna: I couldn't even be the wanted me to be...


Peperoncino: (It's over...I warned you, Arjuna. )

Peperoncino: (Your way of doing things was only ever going to lead to your own death, and not one you'd be happy with, either. )

Peperoncino: (...It's a real shame, isn't it? )

Peperoncino: (If only that Alter Ego hadn't shown up, you and I might've been able to make something of this Lostbelt after all. )

Peperoncino: Anyway, now it's time to decide what I'm going to do next...

A:???: ...

Peperoncino: You're right! I can't turn back now!

Peperoncino: I only washed my hands of this Lostbelt's king,not the Lostbelt itself.

Peperoncino: Besides, it's not like any of us ever had a real choice anyway, especially with you watching over us. Right, U?

A:???: ......

Peperoncino: Aww, maybe she didn't like me calling her that. It's too bad we can't communicate more easily.

Peperoncino: Still...that gave me the push I needed. Time to take responsibility for looking the other way all this time.

Peperoncino: I wonder if you understood what we were really doing here, Fujimaru.

Peperoncino: We didn't give the people of this world weapons and teach them to fight so they could live.

Peperoncino: We just wanted them to survive to use them to defeat Arjuna, with no real concern for what came afterward.

Peperoncino: The only reason we helped these people was so that we could more efficiently erase their god, and eventually, them.

Peperoncino: The Servants may have known enough to keep quiet about it...

Peperoncino: ...but I could see how it wore on you and Mashie.

Peperoncino: I'm sure you both wished there was a way these people could all live happily ever after from now on.

Peperoncino: But you both know you don't have any right to say that when you're taking their future away from them.

Peperoncino: That's very responsible of you,especially when you're both still so young.

Peperoncino: But, unfortunately, none of that matters to me. I can say it all I want.

Peperoncino: These people aren't livestock reduced to following a god gone wrong. They deserve more than that.

Peperoncino: So as one of the people responsible for helping them take back their lives, I'm coming down on their side now.

Peperoncino: All right...time to take care of this last bit of business.

Peperoncino: Otherwise, how could I show my face to Kadoc, Ophelia, and Akuta?

Mash: Even though they were fighting for the fate of this world...

Mash: seemed to me like their battle was intensely personal.

Rama: That's usually what battles between true warriors boil down to.

Lakshmi: I'm grateful to you, Fujimaru.

Lakshmi: I can feel Alakshmi's joy in knowing that Lakshmi's Divinity has been freed.

Lakshmi: All I need to do is return the favor. So, that is the Tree of Emptiness responsible for creating this false world.

Lakshmi: Very well, I will do what you ask. Although...this will be my first time felling a tree instead of fighting a war or rebellion.

Ganesha: It's weird seeing it pulsing and squirming like that. Makes me kind of motion sick to watch...

Goredolf: Even after seeing it in China, I still don't know what to make of it! Me, one of the Clock Tower's most prodigious talents!

Goredolf: Still, however it works, it's clear that thing is what's keeping this Lostbelt in place!

Da Vinci: That's true. Don't hold back now,Fujimaru. This is just like the other ones.

Da Vinci: I'll try to analyze it as much as I can, but that's not really our priority right now.

Da Vinci: We still have to take back the world we lost...and to do that, that tree's gotta go down!

Meunière: And hey, now that Arjuna's gone, the sacred beasts and kali are vanishing too, so there's no one left to get in your way.

Peperoncino: Well that's mean. What am I, chopped liver?

Peperoncino: Or is it just that you can't imagine that a Master without a Servant could be a threat, Meunie?

Peperoncino: Come to think of it, I never did greet you guys properly, did I? Well, better late than never. Welcome to my Lostbelt.

Peperoncino: It's so nice of you to come all this way, remnants of Chaldea. But's time to say goodbye.

Peperoncino: My name is Scandinavia Peperoncino. On behalf of the Crypters...I'm going to kill you now.

Mash: ...!

Fujimaru 1: Pepe...

Fujimaru 2: ...Please stand aside.

Peperoncino: Aww, why do you look so disappointed,Fujimaru? Were you hoping for someone stronger?

Peperoncino: Well, that's fine with me. It'll make my job easier. I guess this means it was worth traveling with you guys after all.

Peperoncino: But hey, I still kept my end of the bargain, right? We only agreed to work together until Arjuna was defeated.

Fujimaru 1: I can't just move on like that...

Mash: Me neither...Pepe, I don't understand.

Mash: We've been traveling around India together all this time. We've talked about so many things.

Mash: I thought there was no reason for us to fight each other anymore!

Meunière: Yeah! I was just listening in on your conversations most of the time, but you sounded like you were all really getting along!

Meunière: I thought we, you know, had an understanding!

Peperoncino: An understanding? ...That must be because we all happened to feel the same way about this world.

Peperoncino: I sure don't remember discussing anything deeper than that.

Fujimaru 1: Then why do we know your birth name was Myourenji Arou?

Peperoncino: Oh my! Of all the things I wish you'd forgotten,you just couldn't let that one go, huh!?

Peperoncino: Well, if your memory is that good, you should have no problem remembering what I said and didn't say.

Peperoncino: I do consider you Chaldeans friends now. I really do. And it's true that I don't have any reason to fight you.

Peperoncino: Buuut...did I ever say I was willing to fight for Proper Human History?

Mash: ...!

Mash: B-but, I thought you only agreed to help the Foreign God in exchange for your life because you had no other choice.

Peperoncino: Well, you're wrong. All of us are here by choice.

Peperoncino: Make sure you don't ever say that to any of the other Crypters, Mashie. Not unless you want to insult us.

Peperoncino: Yes, we did agree to help the Foreign God in exchange for our lives. But we made that choice willingly, not reluctantly.

Peperoncino: Personally, I thought the Foreign God's conditions were fair, and Kirschtaria's plan was in the right.

Peperoncino: Do you get it now? I chose my own life over the rest of the world.

Peperoncino: That makes me an irredeemable villain. You guys would call me an enemy of humanity.

Da Vinci: ...Yeah, I get it now. You don't hate other people, and you don't hate yourself.

Da Vinci: No, you hate something much bigger than that. You hate human society. You're literally a public enemy.

Peperoncino: Eee☆ Does that make me a terrorist? Ooh, how glamorous!

Peperoncino: But no, you're wrong there.

Peperoncino: I never hated this Lostbelt,putting aside how Arjuna ran it.

Peperoncino: You understand, right, Fujimaru? This is the fourth Lostbelt you've seen so far, correct?

Peperoncino: It's peaceful here. There's hope for the future, and love to be had just by being alive. You could live a full life here.

Peperoncino: It's rare for a world to turn out like this, even if the people who live here don't know that.

Peperoncino: In the big picture, it's never been troubled by war or revolt.

Peperoncino: And in the little picture, it's never had to worry about communities growing old and dying off, or a beloved brand going under, or a hot new trend fizzling out.

Peperoncino: The more complicated society gets, the harder it gets to survive in it. It's cruel and unforgiving, and so many things slip through the cracks.

Peperoncino: But this Lostbelt never had anything like that. Life was simple here. People were happy.

Peperoncino: ...That's why it was destroyed. Pruned away.

Peperoncino: History decided this world was too happy, too perfect, and pruned it away for being unnecessary.

Peperoncino: Can you believe that? You people fighting for humanity always say you want peace...

Peperoncino: ...but then you go and reject a world like this–a truly peaceful place. It's like you can't conceive of a world not dominated by pain and suffering.

Peperoncino: So I don't ever want to hear you say that Proper Human History is more peaceful than any of these worlds.

Peperoncino: Trust me, your world is a crueler, more disgusting hell than any world you'll find in a Lostbelt.

Mash: ...

Peperoncino: So, now do you understand why you and I can never see eye to eye?

Fou: Fou...

Holmes: ...You're right. I agree with you.

Holmes: I doubt that any Lostbelt is as awful as the modern world [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru hails from.

Holmes: But that's all the more reason for us to be proud of it!

Holmes: Any history daring to call itself Proper Human History should aspire to overcome all manner of hells!

Holmes: If anything, this journey has only made me more certain that mankind has chosen the most difficult route possible.

Holmes: [♂ Mr. /♀ Ms. ] Fujimaru has spent [♂ his /♀ her] whole life on the forefront of that route. If [♂ he /♀ she] wishes to continue down this path, we will be there with [♂ him /♀ her] every step of the way!

Fujimaru 1: Holmes...!

Fujimaru 2: Thank you...!

Peperoncino: Ooh, I knew you'd say something like that, Holmsie! I do love that side of you!

Peperoncino: Anyway, I think that's enough talking. Ready to go, Karnie?

Peperoncino: I'm impressed how long you've been holding out,but you must be at your limit by now, no?

Ganesha: Huh? Why're you bringing Karna into this now? He's not double-crossing us, is he?

Ganesha: No way, what am I even saying? The odds of Karna doing that are down there with the idea of a game series having a hundred sequels!

Karna: ...I'm sorry. I'm afraid...I may end up betraying you after all, Ganesha.

Ganesha: No way!

Karna: ...Let me ask you something, Rama. How are you feeling now?

Rama: Me? Now that you mention it, I feel great.

Rama: Krishna's curse must have been lifted when Arjuna vanished.

Karna: Good. Then I can return your sword of evil's bane. Thank you for lending it to me. It was a great help.

Karna: Now then...Master, there is something I need to tell you.

Fujimaru 1: What is it?

Karna: I used the last of my strength during my battle with Arjuna.

Karna: In fact, my Spirit Origin is already gone. I'm only here right now by sheer force of will.

Meunière: Really!? Holy shit, he's right! Karna's magical energy signal is gone! He really is just there by force of will!

Ganesha: !

Karna: ...That is what I meant by betraying you. All that remains now is what was here to begin with.

Karna: ...I feel like I should return it now. Especially as that's what he wants.

Fujimaru 1: Huh?

Ganesha: ...Now I gotcha. So that's how it is, huh? Haha, that's just like you, Karna.

Karna: ...Do you want it?

Peperoncino: You bet I do, hon. Besides, I figured this would happen. Why do you think I stood back and didn't say anything?

Peperoncino: In spite of everything, I still can't bring myself to abandon them. I couldn't even if I wanted to.

Peperoncino: ...I like them too much.

Karna: I see. Then it's yours. Though I suppose it was always yours to begin with.

Karna: I'm told I'm the Hero of Benefaction, after all,so I would feel wrong about holding onto it.

Peperoncino: Suit yourself, hon. Just don't expect a thank-you. Although, are you sure you're okay with this?

Karna: I am.... I have faith in my Master.

Ganesha: Man...I can't believe you're still doing the right thing here, Karna. Geez, get a clue, will you?

Karna: I'm sorry.

Ganesha: And stop apologizing so much. Then again,you wouldn't be you otherwise, would you?

Ganesha: Anyway, since it looks like we're saying goodbye and all, I just want you to know.

Ganesha: Once this is all over, I plan on going right back to my old carefree shut-in self, so don't you worry about me.

Karna: This is a rare opportunity. As you're now a god, I suggest getting out there and seeing a little more of the world.

Karna: Besides, you've just finished being shut away for countless years. The outside world should seem even newer to you now.

Ganesha: Aww.

Karna: Besides...This may be goodbye, but we don't know for how long.

Karna: As long as you wear that Ganesha hat, I have a feeling that I will have another chance to fight by your side.

Ganesha: Hey, don't say that! Coming from you,it sounds like it'll actually happen!

Ganesha: I've had more than enough fighting to last me my whole life, thank you very much!

Ganesha: (Still...Considering how the best I could do before was cower in fear behind him...)

Ganesha: (...getting to fight by Karna's side is definitely something new...)

Ganesha: ...Well, see you around.

Karna: And you.

Holmes: So he's disappearing? ...No, it would seem not.

Mash: No, he isn't. I can tell what's about to happen...

Aśvatthāman: ...Tch, he gave my gift right back to me, huh? Pisses me the hell off.

Peperoncino: You wanted more?

Aśvatthāman: Nah, I'm just angry. Same as usual.

Aśvatthāman: I know what's going on here. I could see it happening while I was inside him.

Aśvatthāman: Looks like it's time to keep my promise,and get angry on your behalf. Am I right?

Peperoncino: That'd be grand. Would you mind?

Aśvatthāman: Ha? The hell you mean, would I mind? Don't ask me, order me, dammit! You're my Master, aren't you?

Peperoncino: ...Well then, don't mind if I do,my angry little Servant.

Rama: Good grief. Just when I think it's over, we have to go up against yet another formidable hero.

Rama: Then again, if this is a new chapter in the chronicles of the King of Kosala, I could ask for nothing more!

Rama: In fact, I'm grateful you've given me this last chance to show off what I can truly do!

Ganesha: Aw man, my joints are still really stiff...And I really don't like going up against these Shiva types.

Ganesha: But, I'm pretty sure the whole reason Ganesha came here in the first place was to do something about that tree. There's no way I can back out of this one!

Lakshmi: It doesn't matter who stands in our way. I will see this through to the end. It's the least I can do for my comrade in arms who brought us here.

Nemo: ...

Peperoncino: Ooh, you're all so fired up now! I love it!

Peperoncino: That just leaves you and Mashie, Fujimaru.

Peperoncino: You're the Master who's the key to this whole operation, right? So what are you hanging your head for?

Peperoncino: You've fought hard and bravely to get this far, right? And not just here in India, but everywhere you've been.

Peperoncino: So now's the time to take responsibility for making it all this way. I want you to thrill me one last time, just like you've been doing all along.

Mash: ...Pepe...

Mash: If this is about responsibility...If our only choice now is to do what must be done...

Mash: Then we're not going to back down either. We can't. Not after coming this far!

Mash: Awaiting your orders, Master!

Mash: Our goal is to defeat the enemy Crypter and Aśvatthāman...and to cut down the Tree of Emptiness!

Fujimaru 1: ...Let's do it!


Holmes: ...Well done. You've managed to fell the tree. I can see its magical energy signal fading rapidly.

Peperoncino: Looks like there's only one thing left to do...It might be too little too late, but if I use my Sirius Light–

Aśvatthāman: Don't bother. You know just as well as I do.

Aśvatthāman: This anger's only a runway. It's meant to help you get back up to speed so you can keep on going.

Aśvatthāman: This isn't the destination by a long shot. So it's okay. Don't sweat it.

Peperoncino: ...I guess our teamwork just wasn't up to snuff.

Peperoncino: Maybe things would've been different if we'd kept our contract this whole time. I'm sorry, Aśvatthāman.

Aśvatthāman: You think? It pisses me off, but I felt like I got to raise more hell out there than I thought I would. Seems to me like we were a pretty good match.

Aśvatthāman: ...Sorry I couldn't win this one for you. Believe me, I'm pissed off about it too.

Peperoncino: Hey, I'm still alive. That's good enough for me.

Aśvatthāman: Ha. So you decide for yourself whether you've won or lost, huh? You really are a clever Master.

Aśvatthāman: ...See ya.

Peperoncino: ...Goodbye, my awkward Servant.

Peperoncino: What were you doing? I'm pretty sure we could have won if you'd helped us out.

Limbo: ...Khh! Gah...! Phew...

Limbo: Yes, yes, I had every intention of assisting, truly I did.

Limbo: But I'm afraid I ran into some entirely unexpected trouble of my own...

Limbo: ...Now then...

Limbo: Let's get this over with, shall we?

Limbo: Now that everyone's gaze is rooted to the god high in the sky, it's time I introduced myself properly.

Limbo: Indeed, how could they not be in awe at the god of a Lostbelt? Mmm, truly, they cannot help it.

Limbo: Just as I cannot help it if I take advantage of this moment...

Limbo: pluck the Master of Chaldea's heart clean out of [♂ his /♀ her] chest.

???: Hey.

Limbo: Yes?

Limbo: MmmmmraaAAAHHH! What is this!?

Asclepius: Just as I thought.

Asclepius: I hate not being able to go into specifics,but damn if my head doesn't feel much clearer now.

Asclepius: Good thing I realized in my final moments that I might've caught some bug I wasn't aware of. All that was needed to cure it was my death.

Limbo: ...Aha. So you made one of your resurrection tonics.

Asclepius: You think I could make that as a Servant? Hardly. Maybe if there was a gorgon around here, but short of

Asclepius: No, the best I can manage now is a slow-acting mimetic. But I can still make sure it at least works well for me.

Asclepius: As the saying goes: physician, heal thyself.

Limbo: So, you used your own death to restore yourself to your original state...

Limbo: I'm impressed you figured out a way to escape from Arjuna's divine control!

Limbo: That, however, does not explain why you're getting in my way now, Asclepius.

Asclepius: Why else? As soon as I came to my senses, I knew exactly where to find the malignant tumor eating away at this world, and I also knew I could never live with myself if I didn't excise it.

Asclepius: Once I surgically remove you from this world,my work as a doctor will be done.

Peperoncino: Hm? Ahahaha, I didn't even realize how beat up you were! That's hilarious!

Limbo: Hehehe, I doubt THIS Spirit Origin I'm using here will last much longer! And it seems a great deal of time has passed as well...

Limbo: Enough for the tree bestowed upon this world to be destroyed. Ah, what a shame! Ah, what a pity!

Limbo: Still...there is always next time. Mmmhehehehehehe.

Peperoncino: I knew it. That body is just a shikigami–a shadow of yourself–isn't it? I wonder where the real you might be?

Peperoncino: Well, I won't worry about that for now. Besides, we both still answer to the same leader, don't we?

Limbo: Indeed we do. As long as we still share the same goal, of course. Hehehe...!

Peperoncino: (...Indeed. I heard you say this Lostbelt would get to its end goal quicker this way, Limbo...)

Peperoncino: (You knew this Lostbelt was doomed, didn't you? )

Peperoncino: (But instead of trying to prevent its destruction, you tried to hurry it along...There's more to the Disciples' goals than you're letting on, isn't there? )

Peperoncino: Hey, Koyanskaya? Think we can cut a deal here?

Koyanskaya: But of course. I presume you'd like a one-way trip to the Greek Lostbelt then?

Fujimaru 1: Koyanskaya!?

Koyanskaya: Why yes. Where there's demand, so too will there be supply. That's just as true in neighboring towns as it is in neighboring nations.

Koyanskaya: Whether it's a late-night bus or a brand-new space shuttle, Tamamo Vitch Koyanskaya at NFF Services is here to provide♡

Fujimaru 2: Peperoncino!

Mash: No! Pepe, wait!

Peperoncino: I swear, Daybit never misses a beat.

Peperoncino: I still can't believe he came all this way just to teach me how to call on you.

Koyanskaya: Well, if it's a trip between Lostbelts you're looking for, just sit back and let me handle everything. We can discuss what I am sure will be a most generous compensation later.

Koyanskaya: Do be advised, this is a one-time only tour package, complete with a...special payment plan.

Peperoncino: Yes, yes, I'm aware. I knew I was making a deal with the devil.

Peperoncino: ...Mash. Fujimaru. I really enjoyed our time together here. I mean it.

Peperoncino: But at the same time...I can't turn my back on the other Crypters either. Just how it is!

Peperoncino: So, what can you do? I say we just blame it all on the world and our unlucky lots in life and leave it at that.

Peperoncino: I resigned myself to it a long time ago. Since birth, honestly.

Peperoncino: Anyway, with any luck, maybe I'll see you again someday! Adieu!

Goredolf: Tch, he got away.

Da Vinci: That's just how it goes sometimes. Frankly, after all the nonstop fighting we've been doing, I'm just amazed we managed to take out the tree.

Da Vinci: I think Fujimaruand the others deserve a big round of commendations from you, Commander.

Goredolf: Hmm...Yes, I suppose you're right...

Da Vinci: Hehe, and speaking of commendations,I almost forgot to give some myself.

Da Vinci: We couldn't have made it to God's Skyboulder or freed Ganesha and Lakshmi without you, Gordy. You really came through.

Da Vinci: Why don't you let me handle the driving from here,and get yourself some well deserved rest?

Goredolf: You don't have to tell me! This may not be my most glamorous move as commander-in-chief, but I'm leaving the rest of this mission in your hands!

Goredolf: I'll deal with the aftermath later! Right now, my stress and exhaustion are both at their pe–arrrgh.

Meunière: Damn, he just went out like a light the moment he sat down.

Meunière: Lucky guy. Maybe I should head to the break room for a nap too.

Da Vinci: Go for it! Captain and I can take it from...Huh? Where'd he go?

Da Vinci: Oh, right, he must've gone to say his goodbyes to her. Well, I can't blame him for that.

Da Vinci: Meunière, go ahead and tell the rest of the staff we're officially off high alert.

Da Vinci: And make sure to let them know they've all been doing a great job, too!

Lakshmi: Now that my task is fulfilled, it seems this world is sending me back where I came from. I'm sorry for all the trouble I caused you...

Fujimaru 1: You mean about your secret identity? Haven't thought twice about it.

Lakshmi: I appreciate that...But it doesn't change the fact that I made a mistake in not trusting you.

Lakshmi: I hope I'll have a chance to repay this debt I owe you someday...though I doubt you'll ever need a Servant like me.

Fujimaru 1: I'd love to have you on our team.

Lakshmi: You really don't hesitate with that sort of thing, do you...?

Nemo: ...I've already given you a ticket. You're free to board my ship at any time.

Lakshmi: Thank you. I suppose fighting to take back the world is a form of rebellion in its own right, isn't it?

Lakshmi: If I get the chance to ride your ship again someday, I expect I should have no trouble succeeding in whatever my next rebellion may be.

Lakshmi: Farewell, old comrade.

Nemo: ...Bye.

Rama: Why couch your wishes in so many hypotheticals? No need to hold back. You can and should join us again.

Rama: Let me be absolutely clear: you were not nearly as powerless or as troublesome as you think.

Rama: You may harbor the goddess of misfortune, but the worst I saw from you amounted to no more than an amusing bit of clumsiness. And that, heh, I consider to be good fortune.

Rama: I think you must have been controlling your bad luck unconsciously, more than you realized.

Rama: You are a great warrior, and a queen who protected her people admirably. Be proud and hold your head high, Lakshmi Bai.

Rama: Or would you prefer I call you Sister-in-Law,in honor of Alakshmi's power?

Lakshmi: No thank you. I've had quite enough excitement for one rebellion.

Lakshmi: ...See you around, King of Kosala.

Lakshmi: It has been an honor to fight alongside the heroes of my childhood bedtime stories.

Lakshmi: I suppose I would even was fortunate.

Lakshmi: Though I am the avatar of misfortune,it seems good things may still come my way.

Lakshmi: So I'm certain it's possible that you will one day be reunited with the one you love as well. I pray that day comes. Farewell.

Lakshmi: ...Lastly, there is something I need to say to you, Fujimaru.

Lakshmi: Now that I'm about to meet my end in this place...

Lakshmi: ...I need you to answer the question I've been putting off until now.

Lakshmi: Was there meaning in us fighting alongside the people of this world against its god?

Fujimaru 1: ...You mean, because they're going to disappear now?

Lakshmi: Yes. I already know my own answer to that question.

Lakshmi: Peperoncino knew that our urging them to fight would ultimately lead to their destruction.

Lakshmi: So I can't accept that they're simply going to disappear now that this battle is over.

Lakshmi: Nor do I condone everything we did to reach this point, my own actions included.

Lakshmi: In that sense...I may even hate you for leading them to this fate.

Fujimaru 1: ...!

Mash: ...

Lakshmi: ...However. However!

Lakshmi: I may not accept this fate,but that doesn't mean I've lost hope!

Mash: Lakshmi...?

Lakshmi: I refuse to let things end like this. I refuse to let this be their ending!

Lakshmi: I was born in this land. I grew up believing in reincarnation.

Lakshmi: And so I have no problem rejecting this resolution.

Lakshmi: Who cares if they go back to the Pruning Theoretical Phenomenon? Who cares if the Felling Theoretical Phenomenon is resolved? All I know for that these people's lives aren't going to end here.

Lakshmi: There's bound to be a next time for them. There's bound to be! I just know a proper reincarnation is waiting to save all of them!

Lakshmi: They'll all be reborn in accordance with their karma, and go on to be even better people in the future.

Lakshmi: That's how the world works. That's the natural state of things.

Lakshmi: Others may think it sounds like some sort of fairy tale, but I–we, truly believe that all life always has another chance...

Fujimaru 1: ...

Lakshmi: ...I'm sorry. No need to look so sad. I'm not saying you need to believe this as well.

Lakshmi: I'm only saying that this is what I wish to believe.

Lakshmi: Come to think of've already ended three other worlds in this manner, haven't you? The sheer weight of that responsibility is only just sinking in.

Lakshmi: If you continue down this path, you'll be choosing to make yourselves out to be the villains in the eyes of every other world out there.

Fujimaru 1: ...I know.

Lakshmi: I'm impressed. Not many would have the strength of will to do something like that. For that, you have my respect.

Lakshmi: ...Farewell, my comrade in arms. And good luck.

Ganesha: My work here is done too. Though I think I'll hold off on going back to being a shut-in, at least for a bit.

Fujimaru 1: Why's that?

Ganesha: Hehe. Well, Karna pretty much told me to, right?

Fujimaru 2: Because of what Karna said?

Ganesha: Yuppers. Pretty much.

Ganesha: Besides, my real self might be a hopeless NEET,but right now, for whatever reason, I'm a god.

Ganesha: How can I put this...It kind of feels like I'm riding the safest car in the whole world?

Ganesha: And since that kinda chance doesn't come 'round every day, I thought I'd hold off on shutting myself back in and see what else is out here.

Mash: I've never seen anyone treat being a god like owning a vehicle before...

Ganesha: And that's not all. You know how there's not a single god left in this world now, right?

Ganesha: I'm guessing that's new for this place.

Ganesha: So now, for the first time ever, these people are gonna have to learn to live in a world without any gods in it.

Ganesha: They don't have to pray in hopes it'll save them from being murdered by beasts, but they also won't have paradise coming around every ten days to look forward to.

Ganesha: They've only ever known a world where their god was trying to lead them towards “perfection” I think all this new freedom might be a lot for them to deal with.

Ganesha: I mean this whole brand of freedom has a lot of dangers they're not used to, y'know?

Ganesha: It's like suddenly telling a NEET they're free to do whatever they want and throwing them out on the street.

Ganesha: There's no right or wrong way for these people to live anymore. Now, they just have to figure out how to exist as best they can.

Ganesha: So as the last god remaining, I feel like it's up to me to keep an eye on them.

Mash: But...this world isn't going to...

Ganesha: Yeah, I know. Sometimes, there's just nothing you can do. Hmm, what's a good example...Oh, I know.

Ganesha: It's like if your favorite manga café is closing for good, and you just want to wander around it on its last day of business and enjoy it while it lasts.

Ganesha: Sometimes you come across a shelf with a series you never noticed, and others, you might be browsing books you've read dozens of times.

Ganesha: It might not change anything in the end, but I think there's still meaning to be found in just being there.

Fujimaru 1: ...Yeah. I'm sure there is.

Mash: A manga café, huh. I've only heard stories about them...

Ganesha: Whoa, really? You mean you've never been to one? I can't believe it...Other than convenience stores, they're one of the few other paradises outside my home I can visit...

Ganesha: Well hey, you know what they're like, right,Fujimaru? Why don't you tell Mash about them sometime? Or even better, you could build one in your base!

Fujimaru 1: I'll get right on that.

Fujimaru 2: I'll see what we can do.

Ganesha: Just what I like to hear. Welp, that's all I've got to say, so I guess I'll be going then. And hey, congrats on a job well done!

Mash: H-her statue can...move around on its own. I...had no idea...

Da Vinci: All right, so: You remember the other reason we came to this Lostbelt, right?

Nemo: ...As clearly as a blue-ringed octopus.

Nemo: I need to perform the Aronnax Phantasm's activation ritual, and only in a particular area in India.

Nemo: Luckily, I already synced up with the Border earlier,so we're pretty much halfway there.

Holmes: Well, that is most encouraging.

Holmes: Once that is complete, we will then finally be able to reach a certain Lostbelt protected by especially tempestuous seas.

Holmes: While I do look forward to that future expedition, there is no need to rush. I would say we have more than earned ourselves a little break before we begin making our way towards Captain Nemo's coordinates.

Mash: ...Um, if we're taking a break anyway...could I make a request?

Mash: There's somewhere I'd like to stop on the way.

Fujimaru 1: ...

Mash: I know there's no point in going there.

Mash: But...I also feel like we should. I think...we're obligated to...

Da Vinci: Oh my, what's this? Gordy's supposed to decide where we go next, but he's off snoozing it up.

Da Vinci: Oh well, guess that means no one is going to gripe about it...

Da Vinci: ...if a certain beautiful genius who's taken back the wheel decides in his place, will they?

Section 20: A World Where the Cycle ■■s

Asclepius: ...Well this is disappointing. My doctor's intuition is telling me quite clearly...

Asclepius: I may have succeeded at removing that cancerous Alter Ego from this world, but he was only a symptom. I wasn't able to eradicate the source.

Asclepius: Dammit. Even if I did only just wake up, that's no excuse for me to fail a simple operation.

Asclepius: It's still not enough. I need more techniques. More knowledge. No, not just me...If medical science is to advance, mankind will need more, too.

Asclepius: I don't have time to rest. I must return to my research...My training...

Asclepius: Well, it seems the other source of this world's infection–that giant tree–has been excised as well. If so, maybe that'll do...

Asclepius: No. No, it's not enough. There's nothing more dangerous than amateurish medical treatment.

Asclepius: No layperson should ever attempt an operation under anything but the most dire circumstances. The sooner foolish patients die, the sooner they can help medical science advance.

Asclepius: ...Hm? That sounds like someone crying.... And they're coming this way.

Boy: Waaaah! (Hic) Waaaaaah!

Boy: (Sniff) Wh-what do I do? I don't know which is the right kind...

Asclepius: What's wrong? Why are you crying? Are you in pain? Are you itchy? Answer my questions accurately.

Boy: Aah! ...Wh-who're you?

Asclepius: It doesn't matter who I am. If you're neither sick nor injured, and have no need for a doctor, then go away.

Asclepius: I'd offer to go away myself, but I'm afraid my own legs can't take another step.

Boy: Y-you're a doctor!? P-please, you've gotta help my mom! She's sick!

Boy: She won't stop coughing no matter what we do! I don't want her to die!

Boy: I heard the herbs around here could help her,but I don't know which one to pick...!

Asclepius: Calm down. So the patient's your mother, is it? How frequently does she cough? Does she cough up blood? What color is the phlegm? Tell me everything.

Asclepius: Hmph, what a waste of time. This diagnosis won't do a thing to help advance medical science.

Boy: ...

Asclepius: I don't even need to go treat her myself. You handle this.

Asclepius: Take this and have her swallow it. It'll put her to sleep, but that's normal. Don't worry about it.

Asclepius: Wait until morning, and if she's still coughing,give her this pill as well. That's all.

Boy: R-really!? Th-thanks, Mr. Doctor! Thank you so much!

Asclepius: ...His mother, huh.

Narration: For some reason, I suddenly remembered when someone asked me why I cared so much about advancing medicine.

Narration: What is it that drives me to pursue it to the exclusion of everything else?

Narration: (Hell if I know. I forgot that sort of thing a long time ago. )

Narration: Still...there is one thing I know I want.

Narration: Humans...Mankind...Carry on my work. Travel the path that others have blazed.

Narration: There is no need to fear failure.

Narration: Casting aside excellence may be foolish,but it is no less so to cast failure aside.

Narration: For anything that continues to evolve will always be defective when compared to the future.

Narration: If human medicine can reach the same heights I did, and continue on even further, they will no longer have anything to fear from the gods.

Narration: I once managed to conquer death...Will mankind ever do the same?

Narration: Yes. I'm sure they will. As long as no foolish gods try to get in their way.

Narration: How I loathe such gods, none more so than Apollo,who impregnated a human woman, only to let her die.

Narration: If human medicine can ever truly surpass death...

Narration: If it advances to a point where they can bring back the dead, and no one ever has to die again...

Narration: ...then someone else will tell her in my place.

Narration: ...I forgot what it was I wanted to tell her,but it's probably a trifling matter.

Narration: Some day...the mother I never got to touch,or even to lay eyes on...

Narration: The mother who was killed by a foolish, detestable god, and reduced to ash by the time I was born...

Narration: ...will know how I feel...


Asha: This is so strange, isn't it, Auntie? The Kali Yuga is over, but nothing happened. I'm shocked!

Asha: The giant tree and God's Skyboulder are gone, too...

Aunt: That's true, it's so strange. But we haven't seen any kali, either. Maybe this change is for the better?

Asha: Hm? There's something outside the window...I'm gonna go take a look.

Aunt: Okay, but be careful, all right? It's dark outside now, so I don't want you going off too far.

Asha: I won't!

Asha: Oh wow, it's the travelers! What a surprise!

Asha: What's up? It feels like it's been forever since I saw you...

Mash: Well, um...We...came to say goodbye.

Mash: tell you what's going on.

Fujimaru 1: This world's god is gone now.

Fujimaru 2: There's no more reincarnation cycle anymore.

Asha: ...What do you mean?

Mash: Up until now...a god was putting this world through an endless cycle of reincarnation.

Mash: ...Those reincarnations were...wrong. They never should have happened.

Mash: ...Do you want to know what took place in them?

Mash: Do you want to know what you forgot...?

Mash: If you should know it's going to be painful. Maybe you're not even meant to know about it.

Mash: But, even so I–we feel like we're supposed to tell you...

Asha: Oh...Yeah. That makes sense.

Asha: I knew I'd forgotten something. I could tell something wasn't right.

Asha: Please tell me, [♂ mister /♀ miss].

Asha: I wanna know what I forgot...and what I lost...

Mash: ...

Asha: Father...

Asha: So I did have a father...

Mash: ...

Asha: ...Know what? I'm not surprised.

Asha: Even when I'm talking to my auntie and uncle at home,or when I go outside to play...

Asha: ...I wanted to call out for someone, but I couldn't,and it felt like something was missing...

Asha: I was wondering why I felt like that. Now it all makes sense...

Mash: W-wait! Please don't get the wrong idea! This wasn't okay!

Mash: Your father...Ajai wasn't defective or evil in any way!

Mash: He could be overly blunt, and he was kind of awkward...but he had an inner strength that kept him going no matter what things were like around him...

Mash: He loved his family, and he fought bravely to protect them...

Mash: And...

Asha: Thanks, miss! It's hard for me to imagine, but I think I get it.

Mash: I'm sorry. I wish I had more than words to convey what he was like...

Mash: I did the best I could, but I'm still not sure if this means anything to you...

Asha: ...

Asha: Hey, are there proper reincarnations?

Mash: ...Huh?

Asha: You said this world went through wrong reincarnations before, right? So I was just thinking, if there're wrong ones, maybe there're proper ones too...

Asha: O-oh no, did I surprise you? Did I say something weird? I'm sorry.

Fujimaru 1: Not at all. I think...there must be proper reincarnations too.

Fujimaru 2: Not at all. I don't know...but I'd like to believe in proper reincarnations too.

Asha: Hehe. Yeah, I think so too.

Asha: So...if my father went away in a wrong reincarnation...

Asha: you think maybe I'll get to see him again when there's a proper one?

Asha: ...I hope I can...

Mash: ...

Mash: Y-yeah...I'm can...

Fujimaru 1: (Mash...)

Asha: Thank you both for telling me all this!

Asha: Well, I should get back home, before my auntie and uncle start to worry about me...Oh, you guys are all leaving on another journey now, right?

Asha: I'm gonna miss you guys, but I hope you have fun! Come see me again sometime, okay!

Fujimaru 1: ...That's enough, Mash.

Mash: ...

Mash: I'm sorry, Senpai. I know this was incredibly selfish of me...

Mash: But, I just felt like I had to tell her...

Mash: Maybe...I'm just trying to make myself feel better...

Fujimaru 1: ...Maybe. But that's okay.

Fujimaru 2: ...No, I think you were right to tell her.

Da Vinci: ...

Holmes: ...If you ask me, I think it's still too soon to come to conclusions.

Holmes: My job is to tell the truth, and the truth is,we are doing what we must to save the world.

Holmes: That is a fact, and one we must not forget. We must not resent it for purely personal reasons.

Holmes: Mash, everything you've experienced up to this point, good and bad alike, has helped shape who you are.

Holmes: Similarly, do keep in mind that everything we've done here is necessary for what we're trying to accomplish.

Holmes: ...At least for now, of course.

Holmes: Time will tell whether the actions we took were the right ones or not.

Holmes: Though I can't yet say if that answer will be revealed to us...or to others who will pass judgment on us.

Holmes: Regardless, once we are done, the people judging our actions will be those of Proper Human History...and that is how it should be.

Mash: ...Yes. You're right.

Mash: I learned in Russia, Scandinavia, and China...that we would have to fight other worlds' futures in order to take back our own.

Mash: That we would have to make difficult choices,but we can't let them hold us back.

Fou: Fou...

Mash: I'm okay now, Fou. I feel calmer now.

Mash: I have to apologize to you too, Master. I'm all right now.

Mash: Now come on! Let's head to where we need to go and get that part activated!

Mash: Oh, look at that, Master. The starry sky is so beautiful here! I think this'll be the perfect night for a drive.

Narration: ...Good night. My blanket is nice and warm. It still smells of sunlight after being hung up to dry. My tummy is nice and full,thanks to the yummy meal Auntie made. When I open my eyes, I can see the beautiful earrings Auntie and Uncle gave me for my birth anniversary lying on my nightstand.

I'm so happy right now. So happy. Although...maybe I don't deserve to be. I remember the nice travelers...and what they told me... ...and it makes my chest go tight.

I remember how sad and lonely I felt on my birth anniversary...when it felt like someone was missing. Now I know there was supposed to be someone named ■■■■ there. If ■■■■ had been there, would my birth anniversary have been more fun? If ■■■■ was here now, would I be even happier?

Huh...? What was his name again? Who was I thinking about? I know they told me about him, but I already forgot. Even though I really cared, and wanted him to be there... Oh, right. I prayed about this before I went to bed. I'm sure I can still remember that.

That nice [♂ man /♀ lady] said that there could be proper reincarnations from now on. So, I'll pray that, in the next reincarnation...or the one after that, or even the one after that... ...■■■■ will come back to me.

Asha: (Sniffle)H-huh?

Narration: That's weird. All of a sudden, I can't stop crying. I don't understand. It feels like someone I was close to used to scold me whenever I cried before, so there's no point in crying now. I don't need these tears anymore. But, no matter how hard I pray for our god to take my useless tears away, they still keep coming.

I only just remembered that the nice [♂ man /♀ lady] also told me... ...that god isn't here anymore either. Now what do I do?

Does this mean nobody will hear my bedtime prayers? Does this mean they'll never come true? That thought makes me even sadder,and now my tears are coming even faster...

If god really is gone now... ...then who's going to get rid of these tears I don't need? If god isn't here anymore...who am I supposed to pray to from now on?

...However, prayers are heard simply by virtue of being prayers. And not by a proper reincarnation cycle...

Asha: Fa...ther...

...but by the transient dreams of a young girl crying herself to sleep.