FSN UBW Day 10 (EN)

Scene 00

I cut the codfish.

I've cut up the cabbage, and the white radish is grated.

"...All right. All I need to do is put these in the soup and put it on the stove..."

The pot is boiling.

It's a simple dish, so the soup is like the only thing I can work on.

That went well, so all that's left is to prepare the plates――――

"I'm home! Man, it's so cold that it started snowing."

There's commotion as Fuji-Nee comes home.

"Welcome home. It started snowing outside?"

"Yeah. It's not much, but it looks like it'll pile up. Wow, we're having pot food for dinner? Great going, Shirou. Wow, I feel good. Maybe I should have some alcohol."

Fuji-Nee goes into the living room, saying scary things.

"Hello, Fujimura-Sensei."

"Oh, it's Tohsaka-san. What's going on? It's rare for me to see you here."


Fuji-Nee naturally accepts Tohsaka's greeting.

She hums, goes past the living room, and comes into the kitchen.

"Wow, that's a good codfish. They say white codfish is the best, so sake's really gonna taste good with that."

Fuji-Nee opens the refrigerator.


After taking out a snack and eating it...


"Hey, Tohsaka-san! It's not 'hello'. What are you doing here at this time!?"

After swallowing her snack, Fuji-Nee marches into the living room.

"Emiya-kun is treating me to dinner. As for you, aren't you lacking a bit of common courtesy, coming in here without ringing the doorbell?"

The Tohsaka army calmly counterattacks Fuji-Nee.

"Ugh... I-I'm a supervisor here!

Shir―――Emiya-kun's dad put me in charge here, so I'm like family here!"

"I see. Then I shall formally greet you.

Hello, Fujimura-Sensei. I spent the whole day here. I will continue to study for the exam with Emiya-kun after dinner, but please do not mind us."

"Wha―――Shirou... no, Emiya-kun! What is the meaning of this!? Since when did you decide to hold a study session with Tohsaka-san!?"

"Sensei? Please do not push yourself if it is hard to address him that way.

It does not concern me how you may call Emiya-kun. I do not care if you call him by his name or with '-chan' added on. I respect people's privacy."

"Ugh―――Tohsaka-san, did you hear about it from Sakura-chan...?"

"I cannot say what Matou-san was talking about, since I must respect her privacy as well. But I wish it is as you imagine."

Fuji-Nee falters in front of Tohsaka's smile.

...I understand how Fuji-Nee feels.

You feel pressured and cornered when she makes that smile...

"―――I guess the match is decided. I can leave them now."

Actually, it wasn't even a match to begin with.

It's only a matter of time before Tohsaka talks Fuji-Nee down.

I'll let Tohsaka take care of it and I'll go cook dinner――――

The snow stops before the pot is empty.

It only snowed for about two hours, so I bet there's only a bit of snow out there.

"Shirou, I put the dishes in the sink."

"Oh, thanks. I'll go wash them real quick."

I get up and head to the kitchen.

"Are you doing the dishes? Maybe I should do it. It doesn't balance out if I'm the only one getting treated."

Tohsaka gets up as Fuji-Nee sits down.

The proposal is delightful, but I can't let a guest do the dishes.

"No, you'll just owe me one. Just sit there since you just ate. And Fuji-Nee, you're to go prepare the bath."

"All right, I know."

Fuji-Nee is obedient, maybe because she's full now.

It'd be easy for me if she were always like this, but that'd be kind of boring as well.


I dropped another plate.

It's been twenty minutes since I started doing the dishes. This is the second plate I've dropped on the floor.


I can't excuse myself saying that it's because my left hand is numb. I must be lacking concentration if I'm dropping dishes because of such a small problem.


I calmly think for a second that I should put it off until my left arm heals, but I shake off the idea.

I roll up my sleeves and continue with the dishes.

I can only accept it if it's some outside factor, but I can't accept an internal factor causing it.

There's no way I can't win against myself, so I can't admit defeat.


As a result, I recklessly increase the damage.

This is the third plate I've dropped.

I put a towel below me after I dropped the first one, so it fortunately did not break.

So it shouldn't be a problem, but――――


It's really awkward having Tohsaka's eyes on me every time I drop a plate.

"...Fujimura-Sensei. Is Emiya-kun always like that?"

I can hear Tohsaka from the living room.

"Don't be stupid. Shirou has never broken a plate before. I bet he's nervous because you're here."

Because you're his enemy.

Fuji-Nee adds.


Tohsaka ignores her and stares at me.


...This is hard.

Half my body is numb, so if she watches me and distracts me―――whoa.


I cluck my tongue and look down at the broken plate.

This is the fourth one now. I knew I was going to drop it, but I couldn't move my left hand quickly enough.


I slowly look behind me...


...She's watching me.

Tohsaka is observing me really closely.


She suddenly gets up and comes over here.

"Emiya-kun. I'll do it, so you go and rest."


"Don't step on the broken plate, okay? I can figure out where to put what, so you can go drink some tea."

Tohsaka rolls up her sleeves and stands by the sink.


I guess it can't be helped.

It's hard to stop Tohsaka once she makes up her mind, and to be honest...

...It's vexing, but Tohsaka looks so beautiful when she's washing the dishes that I'm fascinated by her figure.

Fuji-Nee's the only one in the living room when I get out of the bath.

Tohsaka's shoes are still at the entrance, and I bet Saber's at the dojo.

It's almost nine o'clock now. I――――

Scene 01

―――The problem is Tohsaka.

It's getting late, so I have to get her to go home.

"Fuji-Nee, do you know where Tohsaka is?"

"I think Tohsaka-san went out into the yard. She asked me what was over there in the corner."

"Corner of the yard...?"

Does she mean the shed?

But why would she have any business there?

"――――It's so cold."

The winter air cools down my warm body.

I can't see the stars because of the clouds, and there is snow all over the grass.

"...Man. What's Tohsaka doing out here in the cold?"

I go through the yard, shivering.

I consider buying a coat while I make my way over to the shed.


"Come on, what are you doing here? It's getting late, so we don't have time to be playing around."

"Oh, yeah. This place is certainly cold."


She's suspicious.

She acts so suspiciously that I'm starting to get curious.

"Tohsaka. The door to the shed is open."

"T-That's not me! It was open when I first got here!"

"That's strange. I thought I locked it from the outside."

"That's a false charge. First of all, you can only lock that worn-out door from the inside."

"Yup, that's right. The door is always open and you can only lock it from the inside. So, how do you know that, Tohsaka?"


She bites her lip.

I'm beginning to understand that Tohsaka is really weak against surprise attacks coming from unexpected places.

"I don't care. There isn't anything in there, right?

That's my training place, but all I do there is practice my strengthening magecraft. Isn't it like child's play for you?"

I urge Tohsaka to go back to the house.


"―――I see. So you're not self-conscious of it, huh?"

Tohsaka glares at me as if challenging me.


I ready myself at the sudden change of atmosphere.

Tohsaka narrows her eyes after seeing my reaction.

"I thought so. It's natural for your magecraft to fail if the one making it is like that."

"―――Hold on. Are you talking about the projection magecraft?"

"Yeah. I'm talking about the 'replicas without anything inside' in the shed.

...I bet you don't know how ridiculous that is. You have no process or simplification. You're ridiculous in every way, trying to use projection magecraft as an extension of strengthening magecraft."

"―――Well, I'm sorry.

But I don't intend for it to succeed since the projection magecraft is only a practice for the strengthening magecraft. It's only a way for me to confirm my basics."

"I'm telling you that's the ridiculous part. You're using projection to confirm your basics? ...Try telling that to a magus other than me. They'll put you in formalin along with your brain."


I gulp.

Tohsaka sounds serious, and there's no humor in her voice at all.

"...I'm sorry, Tohsaka. I don't quite get what you're trying to say, but are you trying to tell me to practice more?"

"That's obvious. All you can do is keep training.

But yeah―――if we want to make you stronger, you might become useful if we change your process just a bit."

Where did that anger go? Tohsaka starts to ponder seriously.

"Hm...? Change the process? You mean my strengthening magecraft?"

"What were you listening to, you thickhead!? It's the projection magecraft!

We can't count on strengthening magecraft done by an amateur, but the projection magecraft is different. You were able to temporarily project Archer's swords, so you'll immediately be a force if you can do that again!"

"...Tohsaka. That's plausible, but yesterday was just luck. I won't be able to do it again even if you tell me to."

"That's why you're an amateur! If you're able to do it by chance or by will, you should be able to do it anytime!

...First of all, that wasn't luck at all. Magi that work on the outside world like me have a lot of magecraft that we can't use. But you're getting all the required materials from within you, so there shouldn't be any magecraft that's impossible for you."

"Hm? Getting it from the inside...?"

...Isn't that natural?

Magical energy is made from the Magic Circuit within you, so it's all coming from within you.

"......Geez. I guess it can't be helped since you taught yourself, but this is pretty bad. Projection doesn't even need to be mentioned, but I guess I have to teach you from scratch about everything else as well."

Tohsaka sighs.


I know I'm an amateur, but it pisses me off if Tohsaka says so.

"Heh, that's none of your business. I've been able to do fine just by myself, so I should be fine by myself in the future. But what are we going to do about the meeting? It's getting late, so we can't waste time forever."

"Huh? What time is it?"

"It's nine right now. It's not a time girls should be walking about."

"Oh, that's still early. ―――Well, let's finish the meeting quickly if you say so."

Tohsaka nods and heads back to the house.

"...Why is it still early?"

For a girl, going outside at nine o'clock is like midnight.

But she still said it's early.... Is Tohsaka not self-conscious that she's a girl?

"―――No, let's stop that scary thought."

I shake my head and erase the ominous thought.

"Come on!"

Tohsaka calls to me.

I run to the porch.

Scene 02

Hmm, I guess I'll go talk to Saber.

"Hm. What I like to eat?"

I nod.

Even though I came to the dojo, my body's still numb.

I can't train with Saber, and I don't feel like discussing dangerous things right now, so I ask her about her food preferences.

Well, it's just that I want to know about Saber.

"...You are asking me a strange question. I do not understand, but is this question important...?"

"Huh? No, it's nothing big. I was just worried if you like my food or not since you don't say what you like or dislike.

I can avoid things you don't like if you tell me, right?"

"...Hm. That is a misunderstanding, Shirou. There is no problem in the food you prepare.

I am satisfied, and I do not think it is possible, but even if you make a mistake with your cooking, I will still have no complaints."

Saber completely changes and watches me seriously.

...Well, it seemed like Saber was enjoying my food, so I'm glad to hear that. But...

"Yeah, but you won't like it if I make something you don't like, right? I want you to enjoy the meal, and I also want to know about your weak points."

"...Hm. Why do you need to know my weak points, Shirou?"

"I'll remember it as reference. I don't think you have allergies to anything, but it doesn't hurt to ask."

"...Hmm. I do not understand, but would answering you improve the quality of the meals in the future?"

"Yeah. If I know what you like and dislike, it'll be easier for me to decide on the menu, and I'm sure it'll taste better as well."

"―――I shall cooperate, Master. Please ask away without hesitation."

Saber sits Japanese-style.


...She's pumped up as if she's about to start a match.

"Please, Shirou. I am ready."

She urges me silently.

...This is unexpected, but I also sit down Japanese-style to face Saber.

"Then I'll start with the broad picture. Do you dislike sweet stuff?"

"It is not a problem. I rather like it."

"I see. Then how about spicy stuff?"

"That is not a problem either. I like the stimulation after a workout."

"Hm, so you're fine with sweet and spicy stuff. All right, I'll be more specific. Do you like vegetables?"

"Yes. I am not a vegetarian, but ripe vegetables are a must in a meal."

"Hm. Then how about meat? Tell me if you don't like anything: chicken, pork, beef. And tell me if you like a certain method of cooking them."

"I will not ask for much. Meat is the primary part of the meal.

Everything you have cooked was splendid, so I would like for you to keep cooking the way you like."

"I-I see. ...This is off-topic, but how was the cooking where you're from?"



Why do you have to think it over?

"...Oh, well. Um, how about you just tell me if it was good or not?"


It was roughly made."

She murmurs.

An opinion filled with hatred comes out of her.

An evil emotion unsuited to Saber, a dissatisfaction with incompetent people and self-loathing for being unable to correct them.

"I-I see. Um...... I'm sorry.

Let's return to the subject. Then, how about fish? I've cooked a lot of fish, but you haven't had any shellfish yet, right?"

"I have not eaten much, but seafood is good for your body. If you do not consider the labor required to cook it, I rather like it."

...I see.

So you like sweet and spicy things, and stuff like vegetables, meat, and fish, huh?

"――――I think I asked you in the wrong way. Do you have anything you can't eat?"

"No, that is needless worry, Shirou. There is nothing that I dislike."


I don't want to say this after I asked her so much, but I'm beginning to feel like these questions were meaningless.

"I see. So, um. You can eat anything?"

"Yes. I can eat anything that tastes good.

I have no weakness when it comes to food."

Saber puffs with pride.


...I see.

These questions seemed meaningless, but I figured out one important fact.

...Um, it's that I don't know how angry Saber will get if I get lazy and make a sloppy meal.


I have to get myself together and go talk to Tohsaka about the serious matter.

Scene 03

...I'll rest before we resume the strategy meeting.

The relationship between cat, table heater, and mandarins.

It's been snowing outside, so it'd be nice to relax in here.

We don't have table heater at our place, though.

"Huh? You're going to eat some mandarins?"

"Yeah. There's still a boxful left, and they'll rot if we don't eat them.

Three boxes were unexpected, but you went and bought them. It'll be a waste unless we eat them all."

I sit on the cushion and pour some tea.

"Ehehe. Then I'll give you three."

"I just ate, you idiot. I can't eat that many."

I take two and start peeling the skin off.

I don't know where Tohsaka went, but I'm sure she'll be back soon.

I want to relax until I finish eating these...

"Hey, Shirou. I think Saber-chan went to the dojo. Aren't you going to take her some tea?"

"Hmm, yeah. Hold on, I'll go take her some after I finish eating one."

"Hold on. I'll do it, so you can rest here.

But don't you have to keep Tohsaka-san company? Even though you invited her with sheer determination, she'll hate you if you leave her alone."

"Uh, guh...!"

I swallow the piece in my mouth.

F-Fuji-Nee, how did you arrive at that conclusion...!?

"T-That's a misunderstanding, you idiot...! I wasn't the one who invited her today, and I don't care if she likes me or not...!"

"Oh, really? It looked like you were conscious of Tohsaka-san all throughout dinner."

"That's just your imagination!!! I don't know what she's doing, but we're going to finish our business after she gets back, and I'm going to kick her out of the house after that!"

"Oh, I see. I guess it was a misunderstanding.

Then I'm going to go take some mandarins and tea to Saber-chan."

Fuji-Nee puts the food onto the tray and leaves.

Heh, go away. Now I can really relax.

I silently eat the mandarin after Fuji-Nee leaves.

Tohsaka isn't back and I have nothing else to do, so I keep on eating.

I finally finish the third mandarin, lay on the floor, and right when I let my guard down...

"But Shirou. You like Tohsaka-san more than Saber-chan, right?"


―――I reply on reflex.


"See, you let your guard down."

Fuji-Nee runs away in a flash.

I don't go after her.

"...Well, I've known Tohsaka for a longer time, she's pushy, red, and..."

I repeat strange excuses with a red face.


When I finally calm down and when Fuji-Nee comes back, Tohsaka comes back as well.

―――All right.

I'll pull myself together and get back to the main objective.

Scene 04

We get away from Fuji-Nee, who's in the living room, and continue the meeting out on the porch.

I expected it not to finish so easily because we've talked so much since noon, but...

"It's impossible to challenge the Ryuudou Temple at the moment.

The only thing we can do is to set up some sort of trap to lure Caster out."

Tohsaka concludes.

"――――Well. You're... right, but..."

"The problem is the trap.

...Well, I have two or three possible ideas, so you can stand by for now. In the worst case, I'll have you and Saber be the bait."

After saying something dangerous, Tohsaka opens the sliding door.

The cold air comes in.

Maybe this porch is special, as it's only a bit chilly.

...It's just like that night five years ago.

This porch is warm enough to be able to sit down and watch the moon even during wintertime.

"――――It's a good boundary field. I feel some human emotion, unlike the one at my place."

Tohsaka murmurs while sitting at the porch, staring into the yard.

"Do you want to sit here with me? I just want to talk."


I sit next to her silently.

She said she wants to talk, but she doesn't say anything.

I can't do anything else, so I stare at the yard absent-mindedly.


I can't see the moon.

My breath is white, probably because it snowed earlier.

When I look to my side, Tohsaka is staring at the yard with white breath as well.


I can touch her shoulder if I move a bit.

I'm not disturbed by that fact.

Is it because I'm getting used to it or because of the winter night?

Tohsaka is so close to me, but I feel so calm.

"――――So, what do you want to talk about, Tohsaka?"

I ask her, feeling that she's waiting for that question.

"...Hm. Well, this place is a bit special. I just thought that you might be fine as you are right now."

"Whoa. Do you mean I'm good enough as an amateur?"

"Not exactly, but maybe so.

I don't know what kind of a magus Emiya Kiritsugu was, but this place is really natural. It's very open even though this is the workshop of a magus.

All the doors are open, free for anyone to come in and leave. It's probably not bounded by anything because there's no knowledge here to protect."

"I think that's what your dad meant by telling you to become a magecraft user and not a magus. You have nothing, but in its place, you can go anywhere."

"What? You're not like that?"

"No, my place is different. My mansion is called a haunted house, and it really is. It rejects anybody that comes, yet it doesn't release anyone that comes in."

"...I sometimes think it's wrong, but it's not something I can change.

It's not like it's cursed, but it's just that I like how it is. I was chosen as the successor probably because of my personality. But it was pretty shocking when I realized it."

"―――Hm. Is that when you realized that you're a bully?"

"......You're not one to mince words, huh?"

"Really? I thought I was being indirect, just like you."

"...Geez. I'm telling you that's direct."

She sighs and hangs her head.

Her sigh is white and slowly melts into the cold night.

...Seeing her face makes me remember...

The red school.

Tohsaka didn't say anything when she saw the unconscious students.

In spite of her shaking knees, she bit her lip and acted firm as usual.

...I realized at that time.

That she might be killing her true self by acting like a perfect magus.

"Was it hard for you, Tohsaka?"

I get uneasy, so I ask.

"You mean the training? Sorry, but I never thought it was hard. I was able to do most things without a problem, and I was never discouraged because I couldn't do something.

And it was fun for me to learn new things. I told you, right? I was born with this personality. So there's no need for you to worry."

She simply says so.

There's no bluff nor lie in her statement, and Tohsaka is smiling.

"I see. Then what about school? If you're going to live as a magus, isn't it meaningless to go to school?"

"It's not meaningless, but it is straying away from my path.

But it's not pointless. Being a student is fun. I'm up for anything fun. It's a duty to succeed my dad, but I wouldn't do it if it wasn't fun.

I became a Master because I wanted to test my powers, and I'm cooperating with you because you're funny."


Ignoring the comment that I'm funny, my worries disappear.

A family of magi.

I thought Tohsaka was carrying a dark shadow because she's bound by a heavy history and bloodline.

But that was just my prejudice.

The "Tohsaka family" is not a burden on her, and she's done what she wanted up to now.

"――――I see. I'm glad you're having fun."

"Thanks. So, I'm sure you were having fun too if you're saying that, right? You wouldn't be able to continue training unless that's the case."

Tohsaka says so as if it's natural.



I can't nod back.

"...Hey. why are you silent? Your dad didn't force you, right? But you continued training in spite of that, so that must mean it was fun."

"Uh, well―――――"

I don't think I ever considered it fun.

For Emiya Shirou, magecraft has always been a life-threatening trial.

I know I don't have the aptitude.

But I clung on to it, wanting to be like Kiritsugu.

For my first year, I trained all the time except for sleeping and eating.

I honed my sensitivity, facing death every night.

I just repeated it for eight years.

I didn't think it was tough, but I didn't think it was fun.

"...Wait. Answer me, Emiya-kun.

I might have severely misunderstood you."

Tohsaka glares at me seriously.



I have to answer her if she makes a face like that.

"―――Yeah. I never thought training in magecraft was fun. I never considered magecraft or training to be fun. But I was glad to have people around me be happy. Um, I thought I could be of help to someone if I studied magecraft."


"I wanted to be a superhero like Kiritsugu. I learned magecraft for that reason. ...Well, that's my reason."

"―――Then what? You didn't learn magecraft for your own good?"

"Huh? ...Wait, isn't this for my sake? I'm glad to be of help to someone."

"Hey now. You may be glad, but you're not having fun!

Look, I'm talking about what's fun for you. I'm asking you if there's anything you consider fun!"

Tohsaka roars out.


Even if she says so, I can't answer what I don't know.

I can't think of anything that's fun for me, and most of all―――

―――I'm not qualified to have such a wish.

"That makes me mad! In short, you're just caring for others and not caring for your own self!"

She suddenly stands up and points at me.

"Huh? Wait, Tohsaka, your finger...!"

Your finger, no, your nail is touching my nose!

"Shut up! Don't talk back to me! Geez, I always thought you two were alike, but I didn't think you guys were this similar!"

Rejecting my protest, Tohsaka closes in on me even more.

"Hold on. Calm down, Tohsaka. Why are you so mad?"

"I'm angry because you can't tell! Geez, why did nobody tell you!?"

She shakes her fist.


I'll have to stay silent for now.

I'll stay quiet until Tohsaka's anger goes away.


After venting for a while...

"―――Heh. Fine, I've decided.

I'll make you admit defeat tomorrow."

She says so as if smacking me with a glove.

"...That's disturbing. Are we going to continue that fight?"

"That fight", of course, is when she chased me around the school.

I was cornered and had to surrender, but the match wasn't settled because of Rider's interruption.

"Yup. You better be ready. I'll smack you a good one."

Tohsaka psyches herself up before walking off into the living room.


I don't know what's going to happen.

So should I be ready for anything...?

Anyway, I have to take Tohsaka home.

It's almost ten o'clock.

I don't know what Fuji-Nee will say if I keep a girl at my place for so long.

"Huh? What did you say, Shirou?"

"I said I'm going to walk Tohsaka home. ...Where is she anyway? It's about time she left."

Fuji-Nee is watching me with blank amazement.

...That's weird.

Fuji-Nee should approve right away, but she doesn't seem to be in a hurry.

"Hmm. I think Tohsaka-san is in the outbuilding.

She's a guest, so she has to have a proper guest room if she's staying over, right?"

"All right, the outbuilding―――wait, don't be ridiculous, Fuji-Nee. Did you just say something strange?"

"Geez, you're the one saying strange things, Shirou.

You're going to let Tohsaka-san stay over because it's so late, right? Tohsaka-san just came and told me so."

"Wha――――Tohsaka is staying over...!?"

"Yup. But you can't do anything strange, okay?

I'll be sleeping in the Japanese-style room, so I'll go kill you in one blow if I hear a scream from the guest room."

Fuji-Nee munches on the rice cracker.

She seems normal, and it seems she thinks nothing of the emergency situation of having Tohsaka stay over.

"Damn her―――――!"

It looks like Fuji-Nee has surrendered to Tohsaka.

"Oh, great timing. I'm going to borrow the guest room on the right."


The alien I bump into on my way to the outbuilding says so lightheartedly.


Her appearance makes my head spin.

She's not in her uniform.

This person is in my hallway, saying something ridiculous.

"Oh, this? I'm going to stay over, so I had Archer bring me things. I don't need to borrow any pajamas."


"Are you all right? Go to bed early if you're tired. I won't forgive you if you sleep in tomorrow."

Waving goodbye, she goes down the hallway leading to the outbuilding.

In a daze, I watch her go and look at myself in the mirror.



My face is as red as an apple.

...Damn it.

What's she thinking, sleeping in the same house even if we're far away from each other?

"...I should take a bath again."

I'll pour cold water on myself and cool my burning face down.

...Um, I'll have to do so or I won't be able to concentrate on my training, having Tohsaka in my head―――

Scene 06

"――――It's morning..."

I slowly open my eyes.

The night that felt like it'd last forever has ended.

"......Good. The pain's gone."

I don't know if I could not bear the pain anymore or if the pain went away at some point.

Anyway, I feel no pain and I don't feel sleepy nor tired.

My head has cleared up, as I managed to get about three hours of sleep.

"All right. I'll go make breakfast."

I get up from the sweaty futon.


As soon as I get up, my left foot slips.


I touch my left foot thinking it's strange.

There's nothing wrong with it.

There's no pain nor blood, and―――I don't feel like I'm touching my leg.


I don't feel anything on my left leg or my left arm.

I try pinching the left side of my chest and, again, feel nothing.


I guess my body hasn't fully healed yet, even though the pain went away.

The whole left side of my body is numb and it doesn't feel like it's my body. Um, I think something like this happens frequently――――

"It's like when I sleep in a wrong position in the shed. I'd use my arm as a pillow and blood wouldn't be flowing in it when I woke up."

Yeah, that.

This is like the numbing one gets from having the blood circulation to a limb cut off temporarily.

Well, it moves fine, so it should heal in time.

It reacts slowly and it feels like I'm moving it using a controller, but it shouldn't hinder my everyday life if I'm careful.

I refrain from using a knife this morning and make a simple breakfast consisting mainly of bread.

My dominant hand, the right hand, is good, so I can use the frying pan.

I cook some ham and eggs, instant clam chowder, and make breakfast for three.



The two bow and dig into the toast.

Saber eats the toast and salad like always, munching and nodding.


It's interesting to see Saber using chopsticks, but Western food suits her more.


Saber's usually quiet.

It's not that she's untalkative, but it seems like she considers silence a virtue.

So this is how she is during meals.

It's easier for me to stay quiet during meals, so a meal like this is ideal for me.


Then, I realize why it's so quiet this morning.

In a word...

"Hey, morning! ...Oh? We're having French food this morning?"

...Fuji-Nee didn't stay over last night.

"Yup. I cooked French food this morning. So just be quiet and eat."

I give Fuji-Nee her mug.

"Hm? But this kind of smells like instant food, Shirou."

"It's just your imagination. Your nose isn't working too well since you just woke up."

"I see. You might be right. Oh, good morning to you too, Saber-chan. I'm sorry I couldn't come home last night."

Fuji-Nee gulps down the hot clam chowder like some kind of sports drink.

I bet there's some special coating on her throat.

"Good morning, Taiga. I did not see you yesterday. Was something wrong?"

"Hm? Yeah, I had to work... well, no. I'm just going around visiting people who are sick. But that ended yesterday, so I can relax again today."

She puts margarine on her bread while she's speaking.

It doesn't really matter, but Fuji-Nee doesn't use butter.

I can ask her why, but I don't want to since I'm sure I'll get a stupid response.

"......Hey, Fuji-Nee. How many students are in a serious condition out of the ones who went to the hospital?"

"No one's in a serious condition. They're all just staying at the hospital to be safe, and I hear they can all come back to school next week.

It's all right, Shirou. Just relax, and don't worry about that incident."

Fuji-Nee bites into her toast.

She looks so carefree that looking at her makes me feel like I can trust her.

"――――I see. That's good."

"Yup, everything's all right. I'll be looking forward to dinner tonight."

She has a peaceful smile.

...Yeah. At times like this, she reminds me that Fuji-Nee is Fuji-Nee.

"Then I'll be going. Please take care of the house while I'm gone, Saber."

"Yes. That is fine, but... Shirou. I did not see anything made in the kitchen. Am I to go without lunch today...?"

"...? Oh, no. I can come home early today since it's Saturday. I'll be a bit late, but I'll be back by lunchtime to make lunch."

"――――I see. Shirou, it is troubling if you do not tell me about such matters. It seems you are pretty careless this morning. Your reactions are slow too. Do you have something that is worrying you?"

"Huh? No. My body's still heavy from yesterday, but this should get back to normal in no time."

The left side of my body is still numb, but it doesn't hurt, so there's no problem.

I can't tell Saber about such a thing and worry her.

"Well, you're right that it's my fault. Meals are your only hobby. I'll make a big lunch to show my apology, so let's call it even."

I wave goodbye and go to the door.

"Hm. I cannot agree with what you just said. It is only that I would not have energy in emergencies if I skip meals――――"

"Just forget about it. See ya, Saber!"

I leave Saber's complaints behind me.

"Whoa―――this is more tiring than I thought."

I touch my numb left leg.

It didn't happen when I was in the house, but I start feeling sick once I start walking.

Even though it doesn't affect my movements, it's a big mental burden to walk with a numb body.

"...No, I have to bear it. This is nothing compared to those two."

Even though she healed up, Saber got her throat cut and was smashed against a wall.

Tohsaka took that hammer-like blow to her chest.

It should be nothing for me, as I didn't actually take a hit.


I step out with my numb left leg and start walking down the hill.

...I feel slightly nauseous.

I walk to school with ghost-like steps.


School's over before I notice it.

It might be because of my body, but I don't have a sense of time.

I don't remember anything about the lectures, and I'm not too sure what I did either.

"―――Could this be bad?"

The left side of my body is still numb.

Even though I don't feel anything, having it numb for so long gets me worried.

"I don't feel it, but it seems like it's getting heavier."

...The nausea won't go away either. And, of course, Kuzuki wasn't at school.

"―――I'll go home. Saber's probably hungry."

I grab my bag to go home.

I think I've forgotten to do something, but I should remember once I go home and rest.


I remember when I walk up the hill with my numb left leg.

"I forgot to talk to Tohsaka."

I forgot about it since I had my hands full with my body, and since my head was spaced out.

Well, I'm sure nothing big happened since she didn't come see me.

Considering my condition, I can contact her once I get better.

"I'm home."

I announce myself loudly and head to the kitchen.

I put the food I bought in the refrigerator, wash my hands, and put on my apron.

I'll be making codfish pot tonight, so I'll use some meat for lunch.

I think about making teriyaki chicken and start getting ready.

"Are you home, Shirou?"

Saber must have heard me, as she comes in from the porch.

"Yeah, I'm sorry I'm late. You can rest while I cook. You must be hungry――――"


I dropped the dish in my hand since I was preoccupied with Saber.

"Shirou, the plate is broken."

"Yeah. That's the first time I've done something like that."

I'm surprised as well, so I respond stupidly.

"Sorry. I'll clean it up right away, so you can sit right there."

I pick up a piece.


I drop it.

"It seems you are tired, Shirou.

No, I will clean it up, so you go ahead and cook."

I guess trying to pick it up with my left hand was a mistake.

...Well, that's a good lesson.

My left hand is still numb, so I'll be really careful when using the kitchen knife.

"Shirou. Please do not push yourself. Please make something simple. I am glad that you are trying to do your best, but I do not want your blood in our meal."

Well, I don't want that either.

I'd be a failure as a cook.

"All right. Then I'll put effort into dinner and make a simple lunch. I'll still make what I was planning to, but I won't use any pumpkin or white radish. Is that all right?"

I take 200 grams of chicken, put it on the cutting board, and carefully ready my fork.

I have to make the main dish with care because of what I told Saber this morning.

"Yes. I will be looking forward to it, Shirou."

Saber replies, as if she can sense my enthusiasm.


I'm more enthusiastic now.

I'll poke some holes first with the fork and――――


"Shirou, it seems there is a visitor."

"I guess so. I'll go get it."

Scene 07

"I'm coming――――!"

I jog to the door.

It's rare for someone to come visit at this time.

Fuji-Nee doesn't ring the bell, and she has a spare key.

I don't have many guests, and since there aren't that many houses around, I don't have many neighbors.

"...Who could it be?"

Well, it's not anyone hostile since my father's boundary field isn't ringing, so I bet it's someone from Fuji-Nee's place.

"Who is it?"

I open the door.


my mind freezes.



We stare at each other silently.

...Well, I'm just dumbfounded, but Tohsaka looks angry.

"T-Tohsaka――――why are you here?"

I ask a natural question with my mind blank.

"You skipped our regular contact."

Tohsaka answers simply.

"I skipped our regular contact? Well, I did forget to go see you... But did we ever agree on such a thing?"


Tohsaka glares at me silently.

...This is bad.

I don't know why she's mad, but I feel like I've done something really bad.

"...Sorry. I apologize for forgetting about it. It was a natural duty as your ally to contact you on a regular basis."

Being pressured, I apologize.

That must satisfy her.

"―――Yeah. Our situation hasn't changed, so it's natural for us to check up on each other."

Tohsaka seems to have calmed down.


I sigh with relief.

It's surprising enough to see Tohsaka at my place, so having her get mad at me here is like an out-of-this-world experience.

I have to take care of this troublesome situation as fast as possible.

"―――I understand. I'll contact you, so you can go home now. I'm sorry you came all the way here."


Why make a face like that?

"...Tohsaka? I got your message, so aren't we going to meet up at the park under the bridge?"

I get a bad feeling, so I ask timidly.

...That must have been the last straw.

As Tohsaka is good at reading what I fear the most...

"No, this is a good opportunity, so we'll hold the meeting here today.

You wouldn't turn away a friend who came to see you, would you?"

She smiles like a devil and says a devilish thing.

"Wha―――have a meeting here... Are you going to come into my house...!?"

"What? You came into my house as well. And it's not like this'll be my first time, so there's nothing you have to hide from me."


That's right.

It was Tohsaka that treated my wound on that night I first met Saber.

But then, I was just confused about this Master thing, and the fact that Tohsaka was at my house didn't register.

Even if we're cooperating, Tohsaka is Tohsaka. She's the school idol and a girl of my age. It's an outrageous situation for her to come into my house... Wait, why is she coming in!!!?

"Well, I'm coming in. We're going to be talking, so we can do it in the living room, right?"

"H-H-H-H-H-H-Hold on, you idiot! It'll be terrible if you come into my house!"

"It's fine, it's fine. Oh, and I haven't eaten lunch yet, so I'll be counting on you."

The intruder, Tohsaka Rin, comes into the house.

"Whoa, hold on...! Stop doing things without thinking!"

I object in a loud voice, but it has no effect on my enemy.

The intruder carelessly goes into the living room, leaving me confused out in the hallway.


After the three of us have lunch, we talk about our future plans.

The topic, of course, is Caster.

We talk for about four hours on how to beat her at the Ryuudou Temple, but the results are not good.

"...Geez. I guess the only thing we can do is to beat them straight on. If what Saber's saying is true, Servants can only go in from the front entrance."

"Yes. There is a strong boundary field against spirits on that mountain. My only option would be to enter from the front gate. ...Since Archer has independent action as his class ability, I am sure he can manage to get in there by force."

"And after he manages to get in there with all his might, Caster will be waiting for him, right? That's not good at all."

"...You're right. He can't be the target when he's the one who should be shooting the target. Well, I'm sure Saber and Archer would be able to beat Assassin together, but cornering Caster after getting into the temple would be another problem.

From what I hear from Emiya-kun, there's a big pool of magical energy there. If we corner her badly, she might take us out along with the whole Ryuudou Temple."

"Certainly. Caster does not seem like someone who will graciously accept death. If she is going to die, she will try to take us down with her. It does not need to be mentioned that the Ryuudou Temple will be destroyed as well in that case."

"Don't say scary things, Saber.

Are you saying Caster will self-destruct if we corner her?"

"I bet you she would."

"She probably will."


They're in perfect unison.

Come to think of it, Saber and Tohsaka have the same opinions, and it seems like they approve of each other in combat.

Both of them are saying not to attack there, so challenging the Ryuudou Temple must be really hard.

"Oh, it's this late already?"

The clock's sound echoes through the living room.

It's six o'clock and the sky is tinted red.

"―――Well, I guess the meeting's over.

I have to start preparing dinner."

I get up.

I'll be making codfish pot tonight, so it won't take that long for me to cook it.

All I need to do is to cook the rice and make something that'll go with the pot――――

"What? Why are you looking at me?"



Why is she making herself at home when we're about to make dinner?

"And you're sitting so far away from me. I don't know if that's your usual spot, but it's inconvenient unless you come closer while we're talking. Why are you sitting way over there?"

Tohsaka, who is sitting magnificently at the table, stares at me, who is sitting at the very corner.

...There's only one reason why I'm distancing myself from Tohsaka.

"Shut up, my usual place is right where you're sitting! It's like this because you stole that spot!"

I complain with all my might.

"Ohh. I see. You didn't care about it outside of here since we're Masters, but you go back to being yourself back at home, huh?"

"I-Is that bad, you idiot!? This is normal since I'm a guy...!"

It's strange not to be nervous when it's a girl of my age, and Tohsaka at that.

I've been having the meeting normally, frantically telling myself that we're both Masters.

It's pitiful, but I was nervous throughout the meeting, and I don't know how many cups of tea I had.

"But isn't that strange? Saber's a girl too, and from what I hear, Sakura and Fujimura-Sensei come here as well, right? Then I should be no different."


It's not!

Saber and Tohsaka are different, Fuji-Nee and Tohsaka are different, and Sakura and Tohsaka are different.

First of all, I can handle being with Saber because she's someone to fight alongside with.

"...Heh, just go home. We're having dinner now. Archer's waiting for you at your place too, right?"

"Oh. I can't go home when we haven't decided anything yet.

Aren't we going to talk about our future plans after we eat dinner?"


Oh, I feel really dizzy.

"Guh... Is that already determined, Tohsaka?"

"Am I wrong? I don't care if you don't want to. So you're fine with letting Caster do whatever she wants for a while, huh?"


I swallow my words.

"Shirou. She does have a point. There is no problem even if she stays here."

To make things worse, Saber is on Tohsaka's side.

"――――All right. But I won't be held responsible if you don't like the food here. And Fuji-Nee―――Fujimura-Sensei will be coming, so you can convince her."

"I know, I know. I already know how good you are from the lunch you made, and I also know about Fujimura-Sensei. I'm aware of it, so don't worry about it."

"――――Heh, I won't be held responsible even if you regret it later on."

I look away from her and head to the kitchen.


I wash my hands, go to put on my apron, and notice that it's not there.


First of all, I don't even remember taking it off after preparing lunch in front of Tohsaka.


I look around.

Tohsaka looks at me, laughs, and...

"Oh, I forgot to tell you. I just don't know about a guy walking around in an apron, Emiya-kun."

...Speaks with an expression of triumph.

Scene 08

The lights go out.

It's midnight, right when the date changes. I concentrate on my training while looking up at the frozen moon.

"――――――Trace, on."

I insert a new nerve into my spine.

I make a Magic Circuit within me, make magical energy, and understand the structure of the wooden sword in my hand.

"――――――Basic structure, analyzed."

I put magical energy into it and "strengthen" the wooden sword.

I analyze the structure, alter it, and reinforce the matter.

"――――――Composition, reinforce."

The usual process goes too smoothly.

...I don't know if it's because I became a Master, but I can now easily strengthen things which used to have a success rate in the .01 digits, and I can make a Magic Circuit in a flash.


...No, it's not because I became a Master.

I'm only copying it.

His swords.

I'm only imitating that knight in red that I saw at the Ryuudou Temple.

I'm imitating his twin swords, his sword technique, and now even his breathing.

"...This is a fake. This isn't what's mine."

I can't help but feel self-hatred.

Emiya Shirou's skills improve just by imitating him.

I know it's not my own power, but I have to rely on it.

It was because of his techniques that I was able to fight off those bone creatures at school,

and it was because of his projected swords that I was able to fend off Kuzuki's attacks.

...Even now.

I know that I can reproduce those swords if I seriously follow the manufacturing process.

"...It's falsely similar to strengthening. I just have to put the start and the finish, separate it into exactly eight sections..."

Not trace on (sympathy start), but trace on (projection start).

...The words are still the same.

There's no need to change the spell if it still works on me.

First of all, I only know and can use one spell to change myself.


I put down the "strengthened" wooden sword.

...The left side of my body is still numb.

I was optimistic that it would heal if I rested today, but it wasn't that convenient.

If this is the compensation for magecraft above my level, duplicating Archer's twin swords, I might destroy myself if I "project" one more time.


I remove the nerve inside my spine.

My body is free of the poison called the Magic Circuit, and tension escapes my body.


"Shirou? Are you not able to sleep?"

Saber quietly comes inside.

"No, that's not it. This is my daily routine, so don't worry about it."

I must be relaxed, done with my daily routine.

My voice is surprisingly gentle.

"It was lively today."

"Yeah. Even though they're different, it was like having two Fuji-Nees here."

I answer her smile with a smile.

Saber agrees and sits next to me.

"But you are training magecraft tonight as well? You do not change your routine no matter what happens."

"Huh...? Yeah, it was my father's teaching to do it without a day's rest. Well, that's all he taught me, though."

"That is it...? Then he has not taught you the magus's way, or his knowledge?"

"Nope. First of all, the one doing the teaching wasn't like a magus.

He was a troublesome adult. He was usually spaced out and clumsy. He said he's going to enjoy what he likes, and he would play around like a child.

You usually couldn't believe him when he called himself a sorcerer."

I can tell that I'm smiling as I tell the story.

About my past.

The five years between the time of the fire and Kiritsugu's death.

Come to think of it, that might have been the best time of my life.

"I see. So you liked him for who he was."

"...Yeah. Tohsaka might get angry if she hears it, but I admired him. He was free and not like a magus at all, but he was a true sorcerer to me.

And, well. I couldn't leave him be because he was more immature than I was."

"Yes, I understand how you feel. I had a magus of my own, but that one was immature as well."

"That one...? Wow, it's rare for you to address somebody like that."

"He is an exception. He was an ancient man. I respected him and loved him. But at the same time, he was the cause of every trouble. It would have been a better age if he were not as mischievous."

"...Wow. That's some way to put it. He sounds like a real bad guy."

"He was. Worse still, he was weak against love affairs, or should I say full of love? Well, that led to the downfall that caused him to be confined. But knowing that old man, I am sure he is still casually talking about love."

Is she stunned or smiling?

Saber talks about her past and swallows her words a bit.

And after a brief silence.

"Shirou. What is going on with the left side of your body?"

She questions me with straight eyes about what I didn't want her to know.

"...What? You knew, Saber?"

"Anyone will notice if you break that many plates.

So, how is it? From what I see, it seems the trouble is only in half your body."

"Well, it's not as bad as a trouble. It's just numb."

I explain to her how it felt weird from this morning, how it's not affecting my movements, and how it's probably the feedback from last night's projection magecraft.


Saber looks at me with uneasy eyes.

When I try to smile back to her, telling her it's all right...

"―――Most of your body is numb, huh? Well, it is natural."

The knight in red is standing at the door.


Saber jumps up as if to protect me.

...To her, he's an enemy that assaulted me.


...And he's an enemy to me as well.

'Drown in your ideals and die.'

Those words he said before he slashed me would not get out of my head――――

"What do you want, Archer? We should have a pact not to attack one another. Leave right away if you are to follow your Master's order."


Archer does not answer, but takes another step.

"――――Stop! You had better be prepared if you are to take another step."

Saber's enmity turns into an intent to kill.

"...No, hold on, Saber. He's not willing to fight.

And we can't fight here."

"Hm... That is true, but..."

"It's fine. ―――So, what do you want, Archer?

Knowing you, you didn't come here just to say hello, right?"

I push Saber aside and confront Archer.


I still don't like him.

Our mentalities are different, but more than that, I just can't deal with him. I feel a chill running up my spine the instant I see him.

I bet he falls under the category of natural enemy.

"Hey. Get out if you have no business."

"......Heh. I heard you did projection, but it really is true, huh? Half your body is numb and your actions are misplaced about seven centimeters inside of you, right?"


I gasp.

Archer's comment is so accurate that it's scary.

"Let me see your body. I might be of some help."

Archer reaches out.


"No, stop, Saber. ...I have to show you my body, right?"

I take my top off and show him my back.


Archer silently places his hand on my back.


I feel a small pain.

Sensation―――I feel heat on the numb left side of my body as if needles are picking at it.

"...How fortunate for you. I thought it was necrosis, but you only opened up what was closed. This should heal within a few days."

"...Something closed opened up?"

"Yes. It seems you have misunderstood, but a Magic Circuit is not something you make each time, but something you reveal. Once you make it, it is something you reveal on the surface or not.

...You did not know this, so a circuit that should have been used was neglected and sleeping inside of you.

It is something your master or Rin would not think of. A legitimate magus would never imagine a heretic whose nerves are his Magic Circuit."

"Your numbness is temporary. It is the result of full magical energy flowing into a circuit you have not used before, and it is only 'surprised' right now.

But now, a wind has gone through the neglected section. The nerve will eventually recall its normal function, and the dormant circuit is now activated."


The needles poke my back again.

I feel a definite thumping from my numb body.

"...That should do. You should be a better magus when your body heals. At any rate, you're too greedy if you try to make my swords the first time."

Archer lets go.

"...Then there is nothing abnormal with Shirou's body?"

"It was abnormal up to now. ...No, it is normal for humans to keep such abnormalities asleep inside them. In that regard, Emiya Shirou is already abnormal――――but oh well.

Anyway, don't even think about using magecraft tomorrow. Numbness will be the least of your worries if you burn out the healing nerves."

"You are knowledgeable, Archer."

"I had a similar experience. I had one of my arms taken away when I did it for the first time. That is what it means to learn a new magecraft."

He turns and tries to leave.

"Hold on."

I stop him.

I want to know why he helped me now, after trying to kill me before.

"What? Are you going to ask Saber to fight me?"

"I won't do such a thing. I just want to ask you about what you said before."

―――Drown in your ideals and die.

The meaning of it.

The uneasiness in my brain won't go away unless I hear it out from him.

"It is just as it sounds. There is nothing to explain."

There's no hesitation.

Archer declares seriously.



...Pisses me off so much that my whole vision turns white.

"Then what...!?

You claim not to have any ideals, so what are you fighting for?

Servants have an objective, right? Then what's the reason you fight? If you don't have an ideal, what are you fighting for?"

"―――It is simple. I fight for myself.

Boring ways of the world, justice, ideal...

Such vague reasons are meaningless. I fight to fulfill my own desires. There is no other reason."

"Yourself――――just for your own self?"

"Yes. Do as you wish if your desire is an ideal 'not to hurt anybody'. If you want to save others so much, go ahead.

But―――only if it is truly your own desire."


My mind freezes.

What... did... he just say?

"If you are fighting out of your own will, the resulting crime and punishment are all yours. The ideal requires that you be burdened with them..

But if it is a borrowed intention, the ideal you speak of is only a fantasy."

In a word, it is a fake.

"You need a reason to fight. But it cannot be an ideal. If you fight for ideals, the only thing you can save are ideals.

There is no way you can save people."

I can't talk.

I can't think of any objections.

Archer's words pierce my heart like arrows.

But it goes the same for Saber as well.

"The reason why one fights is a desire to try to save something.

At the very least, that is the case for you, Emiya Shirou. Isn't that right?"


"But salvation brought on by others is not a salvation. The only thing that saves a person is their own will and actions.

A salvation brought on by others is like money.

Once it is used, it will only go on to someone else."


...I can't speak.


I have to say he's wrong, so why...?

"That is why your ideal is meaningless.

You can certainly fulfill your wish to 'save someone'. But a wish for you to save yourself does not exist.

You will embrace a borrowed ideal that is not yours, and you will probably pursue it until you die."

No, that's...

"―――That's all I wanted to say.

There is nothing at the end of helping people. It is a false life that can save neither yourself nor others."

He turns his red back to us and leaves.



...I can't think of anything to say.

The darkness falls.

We cannot look at one another and just stare at the back of the guy who's no longer there―――