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    Masked Marth


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  1. January 20th, 03.05 AM Shinto, Harbor "I did say pick it up when you can Velvet, but 3 AM, seriously?" "I'm not exactly in control of my schedule here." The black haired woman groaned "Your mother would've at least been funny about it." Out of all the people I could've found, I had to find the one who knew mother. Peter thought lamentably. While the woman's skills were unquestionable and she for some reason decided to fly all the way from Ireland to make a deal with him in person, her constantly talking about Peter's mother was starting to get on his nerves, like somebody scratching an old wound. "If you knew her so well, maybe you should've told her not to die." He retorted bitterly. The black haired woman paused, the wind blowing her teal colored coat. Her light brown eyes looking on the verge of tears for a moment, before she quickly blinked it away. "I agree, I should've done that." She replied in a half joking tone. Peter rolled his eyes, deciding not to grace that line with a reply, he wordlessly turned back from the yacht that had been his until a few days ago and started to walk away, before stopping just a step later. "The deal is done, go back to Ireland." He didn't see her face then but he's sure it must've been very punchable as she replied "Are you worried about me sweetie?" Peter's could immediately feel his face warming up and reddening as he grunted annoyedly and walked away in a regular pace, not wanting to give the woman the satisfaction of knowing she succeeded in flustering him. Finally having a weapon to fight other Masters, Peter is thinking about getting a much needed sleep and make his next move tomorrow. As Peter was just thinking about going back to a hotel however, Rider suddenly called out to him. "Master, there seems to be an interesting development currently taking place." Although tired enough as it is, Peter knows that he can't waste any opportunities to possibly gain an advantage in the war. "What is it Rider?" "Four Masters are gathering together in Miyama." Peter raised an eyebrow "At this hour?" Peter then remembered the animal rampage that probably caused them to come out in the first place. "Hmm... interesting." While he might not have enough mana for a full on battle, he still have just enough to make a sudden impact on unsuspecting combatants. Glancing at the black hole in the sky, Especially with that Servant preoccupied. This might finally be his big chance to grab the advantage. This long night has just begun after all...
  2. January 20th, 02.53 AM Shinto My wife is going to kill me! Tadao thought worriedly as he rushed into his car. He had been stuck between a rock and a hard place, his boss had asked him to work overtime to fulfill some deadlines, and he had no way to refuse. On the other hand, his wife is pretty unreasonable even among women and would definitely not hear any of his explanations. He hadn't even dared to call her to tell her that he would be home late. That might have been a mistake in hindsight, was his first thought after he found 6 missed calls from his wife in his phone. He sighed. Looks like I'll be sleeping outside the front door again tonight... Tadao thought lamentably as he fumbled through his keys. Just then, he felt a light tap to his shoulder. As Tadao looked back, his body immediately froze the moment their eyes met. It wasn't as if the man was overtly intimidating, or that something was physically blocking him from moving, rather it's his body itself that doesn't want to move. "Take us to ██████." The man said. While a man one just met asking to be taken somewhere would normally be very suspicious, for some reason, Tadao didn't feel the need to question him. Rather, he merely got into the driver's seat, waited for the man to get into the back seat, and drove away. The ride was spent with silence, neither Peter nor Rider said anything to each other. Finally having had enough of it, Peter started. "I know there's something you want to say Rider." But Rider stayed silent. Peter sighed, as he watched the city's night life go by the window. "I'm not blind to my own faults Rider. I had all the chance to stop your fight with Archer at any moment, yet my own arrogance of my tactics got a hold of me. I let go of a potentially precious hostage and forced you to reveal more of your powers than necessary. This engagement had left us worse than before it happened and it was almost entirely my fault." He admitted. At that Rider scoffed. "It was." he replied, finally opening his mouth. Peter chuckled bitterly at Rider's cold reply. "You don't hold your punches do you?" He wasn't happy about the results either, his plans had blown up in his face and he had nothing to show for it but an angry Servant. Well, that's not entirely true... "That unknown Master we saw... what do you think he is?" Rider didn't answer. Peter twiddled with the car door's lock. "I suspected he was Caster, but I have no prove for that." He continued. "His appearance didn't match any of our files as you've said, and his Servant is most definitely an irregular." Well their appearance is one thing... but the Servant may prove to be useful... Peter thought, smirking. "Master." Rider warned. "Yes Rider, I understand." Peter answered, slightly annoyedly. "I overestimated my own capabilities and underestimated the enemy, that will not happen again." Peter reassured him. As he pressed the button to lock the door, Peter continued "I trust you're following them?" He asked. It was Rider who sighed this time. "I am." He answered finally. Peter chuckled internally. Even though they're currently angry at him, Rider is still doing what he had asked them to do. It was clear that his Servant hadn't quite lost their faith in him. And it is Peter's duty to ensure that said faith will be rewarded. The car would continue driving for about 10 more minutes, all the while Peter started pondering about their next move. The moment they had reached the place Peter had directed the driver towards, the car stopped. "Looks like this is our stop." Peter remarked nonchalantly as he unlocked the door and opened it. As he was exiting the car, Peter held the driver on his shoulder and whispered in his ear. "Go home, then forget everything that happened within the last 2 hours." He said as he walked away from the car, which proceeded to promptly drive away. It wasn't some fancy spell he used, but with the battle with Archer and his current disguise draining him of his prana, it was the best he could do. Besides, it is very unlikely that another Master would find that specific driver. Now then, for our next move...
  3. January 20th, 02.47 AM Semina Apartements, Shinto After a while, Rider stopped concentrating and looked towards Peter disappointed, shaking his head. "It was killed." "How?" asked Peter. "Some kind of a shadow spear, it was too quick to make out properly." A shadow spear? They had determined that it wasn't Lancer, such an attack was too subtle for a Berserker. Either Saber or Caster. Likely Caster if they attacked from the shadows. A few moments later, what seemed to be a swarm of wasps started closing in on their location. "They know where we are too huh?" Peter remarked. Rider responded by summoning his own version of a swarm of wasps, engaging the swarm that is approaching them. At this rate, it is merely a matter of time before this Master runs away as well. Assuming that it is indeed Caster, they wouldn't risk a direct confrontation and they also have the advantage of knowing both his and Rider's position. If Peter were to send Rider after the opposing Master, he'd risk exposing himself to an attack by the Servant. Their most strategic move would be to retreat themselves. At the very least however, Peter wants to know who they're up against. Come to think of it, Rider didn't mention who the Master's identity was. It's neither Othnius nor Helmut, that was obvious. "Rider, who was the Master?" Rider paused a moment before answering. "I didn't see him in any of your files, Master." An appearance altering magic? But why would they go through all the trouble just to draw attention with the object they were carrying? Are they merely hiding their identity, but why? Regardless of that, it seemed like they only attacked because their position has been compromised. Meaning that they either didn't want to fight or were waiting for an opportunity to ambush someone by surprise. Regardless it wouldn't hurt to find out. Using the location Rider found him at as reference, Peter extended his prana to reach the other Master, speaking directly to their mind. "Let's stop this game of cat and mouse. I have no intention of fighting you." Before he could continue however, Rider suddenly dragged him and jumped away from their current spot as something suddenly landed on where they were standing a split second ago, forming a meteor-like crater. "What--" "Lancer." Rider interrupted. "We need to leave, now!" Rider insisted, unusually persistent. Peter understands the situation, with Lancer appraoching obviously not friendly and Archer still plotting something, the odds are stacked against them, not to mention the still mysterious 4th Master and their Servant. "Tch." Peter remarked as he threw what seems to be a throwing knife to the air, almost immediately caught by a pigeon Rider summoned. "Let's go." Rider then grabbed Peter and jumped towards the top of a nearby building. Peter reached to the other's Master one last time. "Let's talk, pick a location and throw that knife." Rider then carried Peter across the rooftops, while the summoned dove dropped the throwing knife at the alleyway where the other Master is. Jumping towards the most crowded area he could find, Rider dropped Peter in a nearby alleyway and dematerialized to Spirit Form, Peter himself chanting "Perinde ac cadaver." in order to deactivate the shroud and put on a mask-like item changing the appearance of his whole body, before proceeding to blend in with the crowd.
  4. January 20th, 02.46 AM Semina Apartements, Shinto As they were scaling the building. Rider suddenly stopped and yelled "Tevat Noah!" and layers of enchanted wood sprouted around him, Peter being able to softly hear someone chanting close by "...row of Fatal Weakness" followed by a bright streak of light, similar and yet stronger than Rider's own lance throw burying itself through the layers of wood that sprouted just seconds ago, making a loud cracking noises as it buries deeper and deeper into the wood before eventually stopping. "Rider!" Peter called, worried of his wellbeing for once. However, with a calm voice Rider replied from inside of the wooden structure "It will have to be stronger than that to reach me." Peter chuckled, he was worried for nothing. The wooden structure then disappeared leaving Rider standing as if nothing had happened. "More importantly, the enemy Servant has just taken a nosedive straight to the ground." Rider remarked. Peter sighed. "You'd expect a Heroic Spirit to act more 'heroic'. Truly I underestimated not their abilities but how much they are determined to be cowards. Recall the rest of the birds unnecessary for recon." Peter commanded. Rider complied, the screeching of thousands of birds suddenly silenced with the exception of one or two screeches every once in a while. As Peter stopped to think about their next plan of action, the building shook as if it was just about to collapse on itself, Rider immediately grabbed Peter by the waist and jumped down the building as the it did collapse on itself, his feet landing lightly on the ground. Letting go of Peter to drop him on the ground, Rider remarks "Restraining Archer shouldn't be too difficult, eh Master?" Peter snorted "Save your sarcasm for somebody else, Rider. This is but a mere inconvenience." Not to say it wasn't completely his fault, if he had grabbed the girl at that moment, things might have gone differently. "I had hoped he'd be as keen to fight as you said he was against Lancer." Rider thought for a bit. "I recalled that Lancer used a spell before their fight, it may have influenced Archer's behavior." Peter looked surprised. "Mind Manipulation on Servants? I hadn't considered the possibility to be honest." As a specialist on Mental Interference himself, Peter had considered the mind of Servants to be incorruptible by Magic, if another Servant was the one that casted it however, it might have been a possibility. Damn my own oversight, Peter cursed internally. "Master." Rider called in a more serious voice. Peter raised an eyebrow. "I had felt it while we were up there but now that we're down here, it became increasingly evident that there is another Servant around the area yet..." Rider paused. "What is it?" Peter asked. After another short pause, Rider finally replied. "Their presence is all over the place, instead of one concentrated source, there are traces of them everywhere, as if they're like a mist." "A mist? Could it be Assassin utilizing Presence Concealment?" Peter asked. Rider shook his head. "Presence concealment would have rendered me unable to detect them at all, it is also different than if they were to muddle their presence by spreading traces of their energy, it seems like all of these traces are parts of them, their regular state of being." Peter was confused. "So, are you saying this Servant is not a person." Rider paused for a moment before replying. "I can't tell for sure." he finally said. Peter thought about it for a moment. Rider would have known it if it was Archer, Lancer is most certainly not a mist-like entity, while Assassin wouldn't likely have abandoned their stealth and element of surprise for nothing, unless they have killed Archer's Master. "Rider, can you still sense Archer." Rider nodded. "He is underground, protected by some kind of barrier, there hasn't been any fluctuations in his energy yet. He's likely still planning something with his Master." No, it isn't Assassin. So either Caster, Saber or Berserker. Regardless, they have yet to attack, it seems like they are just here to observe at least for the moment. Likely they had planned to take out the weakened survivor. "Master." Rider suddenly called, interrupting Peter's line of thought. "What is it Rider?" "I think I may have found the other Servant's Master." Rider explained. "Oh, is their Servant with them? What do they look like?" Peter asked, curious. "Rider shook his head, looking slightly disappointed himself. "I cant see their servant unfortunately, but they're carrying an object that looks far too advanced and out of place even in this era, I can't imagine them being an ordinary bystander." Peter sighed "You're not sure, excellent. Well we can't approach Archer beneath all of that debris for now, might as well approach this possible Master. Send a parrot to his location." "As you wish, Master." Rider replied, summoning a green parrot flying towards an alleyway.
  5. January 20th, 02.45 AM Semina Apartements, Shinto Peter faintly noticed a few glowing lights around the floor, Rider clearly noticed it as well as he summoned instead of animals, pieces of enchanted wood enveloping around both of them just moments before the whole room collapsed around them. "Ad maiorem Dei gloriam." Peter chanted, releasing the shroud wrapped around his right hand, forming a softer platform to cushion them from the fall. The shroud of Ignatius, an excellent knight turned saint who founded a group known as "Soldiers of the Lord", whose principles served as the basis for modern-day Executors. Quite fitting, considering his mission. "I expected them to treat their hideout with more care, how many casualties do you think there are Rider?" Rider stared at Peter, seemingly confused at his question "Is this really the time for such questions Master?" he asked. Peter sighed. "I suppose not, but still it is quite a pity how many souls may go astray because of the deaths that happen today." Rider made no reply to that. "Enough of that, Archer's Master has proven to be quite more of a handful than expected." Peter said, analyzing their situation. It was not that their opponent was too strong but their recklessness in destroying the environment was outside of Peter's expectations. Having expected a member of the Mage's Association to act like his father in avoiding civilian casualties, even preventing them from knowing about magic. Instead, their enemy seems to not care at all about civilian lives, although he did seem to care about that woman, they may be able to take advantage of that. "Rider, remove this barrier." Rider complied and unsummoned the pillars of enchanted wood enveloping them, revealing a thick cloud of dust and a large debris falling their way, Rider holding it with one arm and throwing it a short distance away. Since an attack has yet to come their way, Peter assumes that the enemy Archer can't see them through the thick cloud of dust, setting up the perfect condition for his plan. "Rider, storm. As soon as you confirm their position, attack." Peter commanded. If Rider questioned the logic of drawing even more attention to themselves, he didn't say it. Summoning thousands of birds of dramatically varying sizes, colors, and flight patterns emerging from the dust cloud, covering the night sky around them and probably a few miles beyond it with their combined voices. If anybody was still asleep around the area, they would be no longer. It matters not how good of an Archer you might be, with these many targets all with different patterns, anybody would be overwhelmed. "I found their position, all of them should be attacking by now." Rider said. Peter nodded in approval. "Make sure to keep them spread out just in case. Let's go." Rider complied and jumped through the rubble, Peter following behind him. "What are you doing with that knife mommy?" Peter suddenly heard a voice cutting through even the voice of thousands of birds. It was the voice of a young girl, though it didn't sound quite 'human'. The sound sent chills throughout his body. Peter looked around the area, trying to find where the voice came from, but there was nothing but piles of debris and dust around him. Rider looks back to Peter. "Master?" He asked. Peter shook his head, as if to snap himself back into reality. "It is nothing, let's go."
  6. January 20th, 02.43 AM Semina Apartements, Shinto The woman's resistance to Mental Interference was unexpected. Is she a magus helping the opposing Master? Peter wondered. Before he had much time to think however, as Peter suddenly sensed a slight change in the air followed by one of the walls suddenly collapsing. "Rider!" Peter immediately called, both of them knowing that an attack would immediately follow. Rider hastily summoned a standing grizzly bear on the side of the wall, being forced to bow down as its head reached the roof, covering Rider completely. Sure enough an arrow immediately struck the bear less than a split second later, penetrating it and barely stopping in front of Rider. Had the enemy Servant not had taken a split second to confirm Rider's position, it would probably have been Rider instead penetrated by the arrow. The arrow had struck the grizzly bear's stomach, approximately the level as Rider's heart, which it would've struck had they been a split second too late. While not an amazing warrior, the enemy Archer definitely has the aim to qualify for his class. It was pretty impressive considering he only took a split second to aim his arrow after the walls collapsed. However Peter has no time to admire his foe "Rider, wall!" Peter shouted, signaling Rider. Rider almost immediately responded by summoning his lance, a long white pole with an equally white blade on top of it, glowing in the dark room. Rider then proceeded to unsummon the bear and summoned two Cheetahs at the same time, each rushing at the enemy servant and his Master respectively. Without wasting a breath, Rider also threw his spear at their direction, aiming at neither of them but rather at the space between them, forming a white line behind its path intending to forcibly split them apart from each other. Peter noticed that the enemy Master was using magecraft to move Ayako's unconscious body towards him, which he takes as a confirmation of his theory, though he decides to ignore it for now, as she wouldn't be a threat in her current condition.
  7. January 19th Fuyuki Zoo - 02.07 AM Miyama Town, Fuyuki It was late at night, the zoo was devoid of people save for a few guards, who seemed to be staying in place, unmoving except to breath. In the midst of the zoo, a large man was walking by his long white hair reaching his back and a thick white beard covering half his face. Although the color of his hair would usually indicate old age and frailness, the opposite can be used to describe the man. With a posture not unlike that of a soldier and the size to match, not to mention his attire, consisting of a brown robe tied with a sash and leather pants. If there were anybody around to see him, he would definitely draw quite a lot of stares. Rider can't help but admire the era he had been summoned to. The flickering lights, the horseless metal chariots they call 'cars', and buildings with heights rivaling mountains. Even though the knowledge of their existence had been imparted unto him by the Throne of Heroes, seeing them through his own eyes is nonetheless still an eye-opening experience. It may be the case that these 'inventions' are humankind's blasphemous attempts to breach the territory of the Lord, but the mere fact that they accomplished so much is in itself beyond impressive. The boat they were just on until yesterday is itself proof of humanity's accomplishment. To think that sails were considered revolutionary during his time, their boat had the ability to move using neither that nor rows, rather using what they named propellers on the bottom of the boat, spinning to propel the boat forwards. And yet these advancements seems to have come at the expense of nature. Such as the sky right above his head, where Rider can barely see a single star compared to his era where the night sky always seemed to be blanketed by white dots as far as the eye can see. There is after all, always a price to be paid for blasphemy. His master soon approached from one of the cages. "Alright Rider, that should be all of them I can manage, are you ready?" Rider nodded. Lifting his right arm slightly, a few gate like images opened around him, exiting from each an animal. A lion, a hawk, an elephant, and 2 wolves, his master nodded in approval. "This should be enough to occupy the rest of them for a while." His Master took a glance at his right hand, wrapped in a red shroud. It was quite obvious that it bothered him quite a lot, and yet he had said nothing about it. Quickly noticing Rider's attention, his Master pulled away his glance. "Return to Spirit Form, Rider. The less people notice you the better, we're going to pay another Master a visit." As Rider took on Spirit Form, his Master started to head for the zoo's exit. As they were approaching to exit, his Master asked. "I trust you have taken care of the cameras?" "Yes Master." Replied Rider. His Master then got into the black sedan they had rented and drove away from the zoo, where the alarms blared soon after. ---------------- 2.40 AM Shinto, Fuyuki Rider and his Master were standing across an apartement building. The building was L-shaped and painted in white, boasting at the very least 15 stories from what Rider can observe. It would've been quite awe-inspiring in his era but in this it is no more than another building in the forest of bricks and mortar. "Where do you think they are Rider?" His Master suddenly asked. While his pigeons saw the Master they were hunting enter the building, they have yet to confirm where they were in the building. Searching the entire building would waste a lot of time and would give said Master plenty of time to escape. Yet knowing all that, his Master did not seem worried in the slightest, Rider assuming he has already figured it out. "I believe you know, Master." Replied Rider. "I read a bit about the Semina Apartements. Room one on the 11th floor has been apparently abandoned for quite a while, it was reportedly 'haunted' after a family suicide occcured in that room. And yet now it stands occupied." His Master explained. He did have it figured out as Rider had suspected. "This other Master we're looking for is there then?" Rider asked, though he already knew the answer. "That's what we're here to confirm. Can you get us there from here stealthily?" Asked his Master. Rider raised an eyebrow "What would be the point of that Master? The other Master had most likely set up one of those 'Bounded Field' around his area of residence. They would be aware of our presence as soon as we step inside of it." Has his Master done a miscalculation? This would be the first time Rider witnessed it. But his Master merely smiled. "Excellent assessment Rider. But I was talking about room TWO on the 11th floor. In particular, that window." His Master asked pointing towards what seems to be a kitchen window. Rider nodded, it appears his Master had thought of everything after all. Slowly stepping backwards, his Master then ran to the edge of the building they were on, jumping towards the window, missing it by a few inches. Rider then materialized holding the window with his left arm and grabbed his Master's outstretched right arm with his own. Pulling his Master towards the window, he opened it and went inside the building, Rider following suit. The inside of the building was quite dark, there were artificial light sources in the room, though it is not currently activated, leaving the room barely illuminated by the moonlight. Before they had the chance to do anything however, a young woman saw them, and his Master unfazed, immediately activating his Mental Interference magic commanding the young woman to "Freeze for a minute." However, she instead started to back away before starting to run, seemingly trying to grab something. "Rider!" his Master immediately called, and Rider leapt towards the woman's position and hit her on the head, knocking her out.
  8. A few days later... Fuyuki Harbor - 05.13 PM The night was approaching at the harbor, the final wave of ships leaving the harbor for the day was having their final inspections all the while most of the harbor's workers were going home for the night, leaving behind an unfortunate few who will continue to work until the morning of the next day. A small yatch docks at one of the piers.The yatch seemed to be originally white, the paint had turned slightly yellow out of use. After a few moments, a lean man stepped out of the boat, wearing a black jacket, shirt, and trousers, directly contrasting the color of the boat. The man was carrying a dark blue duffel bag and pulling a large purple briefcase onto the pier. The man looks around the pier, trying to find a familiar face, giving up after a few minutes and walked in the direction of the city instead. Passing through one of the harbor's workers, the man in the black jacket stopped him. "Is Mr Devenish not around?" He asked the worker. The worker paused for a moment. "You mean the old man? Heard he went on a vacation. New Zealand or something." Replied the worker. A slight smile formed on the man's face. "Is that so? Well tell him I said hello." The man replied before continuing to walk towards the city. "Yeah, sure thing." Replied the worker who stood there for a moment, squinting his eyes trying to recall the man's identity. When the worker realized that he didn't actually know who the man was, he was already gone.
  9. Nobody asked for it as far as I recall, but I added chapter 1 anyway. We got 70+ views so it can't be all that bad, right? Feedback is still appreciated. If you don't like it, feel free to tell me why so I can improve the story. Or at least write a better one next time. Cheers!
  10. If you intend to become a professional storyteller, I don't think that writing a few paragraphs once in a while would be too difficult. Although, if I had to give advice, don't just join an rp for the sake of joining one. Try to join one where you have at least some interest in the universe. And one post per day is quite more than enough. In my personal opinion, a few posts with quality is much better than just churning out as many posts as possible in the shortest amount of time. Well, it depends on the type of rp you joined, for example the one I'm in right now (6th Holy Grail War) we barely have one post every few days, but most of us is still having a good time. Of course, that's with the knowledge that none of us has abandoned the rp.
  11. Japanese Territorial Waters, Near Fuyuki City Peter was sitting in front of a laptop, his left hand fiddling with what looks to be a USB drive. Without lifting a finger, he has figured out the identity of both Lancer and Archer. From what Rider told Peter about Archer's battle performance, he shouldn't be that much of a problem for Rider, at least under the same circumstances. Lancer is a bit trickier, while he seems to be stronger than Rider physically, her master doesn't seem to be very capable, so as long as Peter can arrange a fight utilizing both Lancer's weakness and Rider's greatest strength, they should have a good enough chance to win. What worries Peter the most is the meeting between 2 masters. If they have truly formed an alliance as he feared, the War has became much harder. Even without knowing their respective classes, 2 Servants working together is a fearsome thought, and that's not even considering the capability of their respective masters. Peter will have to break their alliance or eliminate at least one of them as soon as possible. Yet without knowing anything about them, simply rushing in would be a fool's move. And finally, there's the issue of Rider's Noble Phantasm which Peter still can't use without going out of comission. Peter's left arm stopped fiddling with the USB drive. Peter took a good look at it, by all accounts it looks no different from one you'd buy at an electronic store down the road. Peter can't sense any magical energy coming out of it either. And yet it's a key to a part of the net exclusive for mages. The price to get it could be used to buy a car. Clutching it inside his left palm, Peter infused some magical energy into the drive and plugged it in his laptop. A browser immediately opened up on the screen opening a website impossible to access otherwise (he tried), fate.net. What a cheesy name, thought Peter. And yet here is a gateway that connects all the mages in the world, or at least those who are aware of and willing to use it. Browsing the items section, Peter can only see some basic items mostly books such as 'Principles of Thaurmatology' and 'History of Magecraft', nothing useful to Peter. One of the items Peter noticed was some sort of writing contraption involving a quill pen to send and receive messages. Peter scoffed. What's wrong with sending emails or even a regular fax machine? As Peter feared, the kind of items Peter needed wasn't sold on the site. After all, most mages are too proud to sell their works on a modern technology like the internet. Idiots don't know how much profit they're missing. However, Peter did notice a section labeled 'Contacts'. Browsing it Peter immediately understood it's purpose. If they won't come to the site to sell their abilities directly, the way to reach them becomes an item to purchase. And not cheap items either, the prices ranging from a thousand to a million dollars. After compressing the list by searching for crafters exclusively, Peter began to shuffle through the list of abilities and prices. Of course, listing their names would undermine the value of the 'contacts'. Peter can't settle for anything but the highest quality of items, this war leaves nearly no room for mistakes. Peter can probably get the money needed using the same way he acquired the yatch he's currently on. He would prefer not having to stoop to such methods but if it comes to it... *BANG* The sound of gunfire from the storage room stopped Peter abruptly. An attack!? Peter was surprised and confused. Surely anyone who got near the boat would have triggered the bounded field Peter had set up around it. Unless... Assassin? Peter hadn't prepared for an attack but they should still have a good chance to survive if they haven't incapacitated Rider already. Worst case scenario is that they'll have to leave the boat behind. Running towards the storage room, Peter hastily opened the door. "Rider what--" Inside was something Peter hadn't even considered.
  12. St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City 2017 "Therefore, I believe it is in the world's best interests, and by extension ours, to gather an army at the Plains of Megiddo for a final crusade against the sinners to bring about the day of the Lord, the Armageddon." The council of cardinals was left speechless after Peter's presentation giving him looks that says 'I can't believe you just said that.' with one of the cardinals even leaving his mouth gaping open. Peter felt like he did all the way back in elementary school, after he blew his math teacher away with magic after she marked his test with an F for using a different formula than the one she taught. Peter was grounded for 3 months afterwards. His parents had to move him to a different school, he even heard that the Mage's Association had to send a specialist to clean up the mess. Not that Peter remembered much of what happened afterwards, it was a long time ago after all. What Peter never forgot however, was the look everybody gave him just after he used magic. A look of surprise and disbelief mixed with... fear. They feared him back then for doing something they didn't understand, now the cardinals fear him for something they do understand very well. Yes, they feared what he said because they know that all of it is true. The faster the Armageddon comes, the more people will be saved. After a silence that seemed to last for a milllenia, one of the cardinals basically shouted at Peter. "Have you gone insane, priest?" Not exactly the reaction Peter expected, but a reaction nonetheless. "You know it as well as I, your Eminence. That the world has not improved in the last 100 years. If anything, it has fallen deeper into the clutches of sin. Even the most saintly men have started to abandon the church and succumbed to the pleasures of the world. As was written 'If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened.' If we had done this earlier, people like the 'Catholic Necromancer' would never have became such heretics. The faster the Lord returns to this world, the more people who will be saved." The council of cardinals murmured among themselves. They had to know that what Peter said was true. And then, they would have had no other choice but to accept his request. After a while the murmurs stopped. Now is the moment of truth, a moment Peter has anxiously waited months for. It takes months for a priest to be able to present a formal request to the church through the College of Cardinals, who will in turn present said request to the pope for consideration. If the college of cardinal approves Peter's request then the pope would likely follow suit. One of the cardinals stood up. "Your 'theory' Father Peter, has proven more than anything the state of your mental health, degraded to the point where you are a danger to both yourself and those around you. I simply cannot on good faith allow you to continue your position as priest. Therefore, on my authority as bishop of the Holy Church, I hereby relieve you of your position, and all the privileges and rights it entails, effective immediately." And with that, the rest of the cardinals stood up and prepared to leave the room. Peter stepped back, he couldn't believe what he was hearing. Relieved from his position? Laicization occurred very rarely in the church and in almost every case as a result of direct offenses to the church's laws such as marrying or abusing their authority, neither of which Peter had done. He was well within his rights to present his request to the College of Cardinals, and went through all the normal procedures. Peter stepped forward. "Your eminence, with all due respect I--" The cardinal bishop stopped, "I would suggest you to seek mental help, Mr Peter. You seem to desperately need it." And with that, the cardinals left the room, leaving behind a shocked Peter. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Japanese Territorial Waters, Near Fuyuki City Present Day Peter jerked himself up. He was laying down, passed out on the yacht's cabin. Peter grabbed his head with his right arm, feeling as if someone were continuously pounding on it with a hammer. There was barely any strength in his right arm. In fact, there's barely any strength in his whole body, noticed Peter as he tried to get up. In addition to that, he seems to be sweating quite heavily. And yet oddly enough, Peter did not feel any pain in his body. As cheesy as it sounded, the pain came from the inside. Peter limped towards the windows. The ship was undamaged, and the sea looks calm, terrifyingly so in fact. With those possibilities of an attack and a storm scratched off, only one possibility is left. Peter must have expended so much magical energy that he exhausted all of the magic circuits inside his body. Peter collapsed. The simple act of limping to look at the window has drained what little energy was left in Peter's body. Peter took several deep breaths. How exactly did he came to regress to this pitiful condition? Peter can't seem to remember. "You've awoken, Master." Rider's voice from the winds came. The voice seemed to trigger something inside of Peter's head, as if it represented something Peter had forgotten, though Peter still can't quite recall what it was. "Rider. What happened?" "You were out cold after I used my Noble Phantasm under your command." "Ah right." Peter replied, still not recalling anything. However, Rider wouldn't have any reason to lie about it, and Peter himself can't offer any explanation for his condition, so he can only assume that Rider was telling the truth about what happened. After all, it is a plausible explanation as to how Peter exhausted all of his magical energy. Still breathing heavily, Peter struggled to get up. "That Noble Phantasm you used... it is your strongest weapon, correct?" "As you say, Master." Rider replied. Barely managing to get up, Peter limped to a chair and threw himself on it. "I don't suppose I have enough magical energy to materialize you right now?" "I would not advise it in your current condition, Master." replied the voice from the winds. Even though Peter hated to admit it, Rider is probably right. Considering limping to a window and to a chair had left him as breathless as someone who ran a marathon, it would be foolish to expend any more magical energy, however in a real battle... "The dove familiars, are they still around?" Peter asked. "They are. Earlier they picked up a battle between Lancer and Archer." "Oh?" Peter was intrigued. The war hasn't officially started and there's already a battle between servants? "What happened?" Peter asked, still out of breath. "Lancer won decisively, Archer wasn't even able to land a single strike on her. However, Archer suddenly disappeared just before Lancer landed the killing blow. I've determined both their identities, Archer is Paris a hero from the Trojan war, and Lan--" "Save it for later Rider." Peter interrupted the voice, leaning his head on his left arm. His headache greatly impeding his ability to process complex information, Peter can't comprehend much of what Rider is saying. Though he did get that Archer seems to be completely outclassed by Lancer, meaning that either Archer is not much of threat or that Lancer is dangerously powerful. Perhaps both. All this thinking is making Peter's head hurt worse. As powerful as Rider's Noble Phantasm maybe although Peter still can't quite remember what it was, this side effect on Peter's body makes it quite unpractical in real combat. While Peter is confident enough in his and Rider's ability to not rely on Rider's Noble Phantasm too much, there still may come a time when he will be forced to use it. When and if the time comes, Peter will have to find a way to utilize Rider's Noble Phantasm while avoiding or at the very least minimizing the side effects on his own body. And with battles already starting happen, he will have to find that way sooner rather than later. The faster he wins the war, the faster the Lord will come. And the faster the Lord comes, the more people who will be saved.
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