A Shadow From the Past - Fate
It was always the same, all this time
We will kill them, kill them all
Everyone that stand in our way
Will disappear into the shadow
The night at the port town was a quiet one, safe for a few bars and inns that were still opened until the end of the night, until the sun decided to peek once again. It was a peaceful sight, especially for a mansion situated on the edge of the town. Little that they knew, since nobody would visit that striking red mansion in the dead of the night anyway, what happened behind the dense illusionary barrier was a scenery of chaos unable to be perceived by mortal eyes.
"Aha ha ha! This is great!"
Slam, crash, slice, burn; the mismatching sounds of destruction echoed within its wide structure, played by the hands of a young little vampire, creating a crazed cappricio that suited her playful nature. The vampire herself danced to the melody she created, laughing as she childishly swung her burning black cane like an over-sized sword, turning everything she passed by into mere ashes.
"Come on magician, I haven't finished playing yet! Show me something more more interesting~!"
The magician dodged the attacks rather sloppily, and one could see she wasn't at her best condition, panting and wheezing as if she's running out of breath; the vampire seemed to notice this as well, but instead of dealing the final blow, she stopped.
She just stopped, retracting the flame from her cane and floating a safe distance away, above the magician. And the magician gazed back, her grimoire fluttered as she once again, with every little bit she had, tried to read out the spell written on it.
"Hm, I'd like to play some more but I should really wake up Meiling to serve our late dinner. Onee-sama must be starved by now..."
The magician didn't seem to listen at all, her incanation growing louder as the magic circle below her raged. But so was the blonde vampire, blurting out everything she wanted without even noticing the magician. It was as if they were in a very different dimension despite the fact they tried to kill each other.
"Okay, one last game!"
Fire Metal Sign: Saint Elmo's Pillar
A ball of fire materialized and chased after the vampire in a blink of eye, but it never hit her; it passed after her dispersing figure and hit the wall in a big explosion instead. The magician tensed, raising her guard as the vampire vanished into the dark for the second time in their meeting, her giggling voice could be heard echoing from all around the room.
"Our last game is a simple hide and seek~ U fu fu, I wonder if you can find your way past this 'secret barrage'~"
The magician tried to calm down, trying the previous trick she pulled by closing her eyes and heightening her other senses to find the vampire.
"Or, maybe in the end—"
But her breath lost her, and she could only hear her own heartbeat pounding against her ribcage.
"Will there be none?"
The vampire reappeared, right behind her, claws ready on her neck; with one simple tug, her head would be detached, but the next second the magician opened her eyes, it was still intact. Instead she found the vampire chained to the far off wall, held down by unusually red chains. She blinked, unable to process the situation. What just happened?
"Well, well, I wonder why everyone is having fun in MY mansion without me?"
At that moment everything was put into a halt, and the two who had been on each other's neck snapped their head toward the source of the voice, staring with wide eyes as they returned to reality from their self-induced onslaught.
"Good evening. Why are you all look so surprised, hm?"
The magician paled, temporarily entranced by the memerizing figure of the newly arrived vampire, captivated by her mere presence. She whispered under her breath, frozen.
"Onee-sama!? How do you—"
"That is my line, Flandre. Your clone made quite a mess. Or rather, what were you thinking locking me up like that?"
Flandre pouted, averting her gaze away from her sister like a child getting caught for pranks. Remilia sighed, finally turning away from her sister and fixing her eyes at the magician who was still stunned, sitting on the floor; smiling slightly, the older Scarlet curtsied, addressing the magician.
"Please forgive my sister's previous behavior, Ms. Knowledge. She was just excited. And I believe you are looking for me, correct?"
The magician flinched, returning to reality as she hastily, yet carefully, returned to her feet, clutching her grimoire tightly above her chest. She studied the vampire in front of her, eyes observing her whole features, detecting any suspicious act. Well, whatever the vampire might be planning, it was clear that the magician wasn't in a condition to fight back. She should calm herself for once and took the time to restore her mana, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. So the magician stood, giving a quick bow to answer the vampire, which seemed to be more satisfied than she thought she would be. The vampire chuckled.
Time to execute my little plan. O' fate, play your game and heed my command...
"I see. But would you like to call it a day? I don't feel like fighting you in your current condition; it wouldn't be challenging. Furthermore, I also had something to offer regarding our 'duel'."
"Wha—onee-sama! What are you—"
"Hush, Flan. I'm talking with our guest."
"Guest!? Guest, you said—"
"Please calm down for a while, Flandre. Please."
Somehow, Flandre stopped almost complete as she heard that; she stopped struggling and averted her gaze away, her eyes regaining her sanity despite the anger that was still thickly clouding them. Well, that's good enough for now. Remilia focused her attention to the magician once again, trying to look as harmless as possible.
"Now, about my offer. First, if you win, well, I think I don't need to mention the obvious on what you want to do. Second, if I win, I want you to stay at my mansion and serve as the magician of the Scarlet family once again."
The dice have been thrown. Now, what number will it show?
Silence lingered for what felt like eon, engulfing the three figures in a heavy atmosphere of uncertainty. Nobody moved; the magician, the two vampires, not even the wind. There was only suffocating silence, and a painless waiting. But the first voice that painted the air was not one that any of them had anticipated before, as the magician opened her mouth to say something.
The voice echoed, coming from the chained vampire. Her bloodthirst eyes pierced the air, past the older Scarlet and landed on the purple-clad magician. The chains around her started to creak.
"Duel? Agreement? And most of all, letting that magician alive? I can't follow your nonsense anymore, Onee-sama!"
Remilia flinched as she heard the thunderous roar, horror was flashed on her eyes slightly, only slightly, before it was soon replaced with caution. She quickly summoned all the magic inside her to support the breaking chains, but it was too late.
The chains shattered into a mere speckles of red light.
Flandre laughed, spreading out her grotesque wings as they finally tasted freedom once again. Her destructive power raged, crackling in the air as it made an invisible wave of chaos, sending everything around her into ruin; the floor, the wall, the magician, even the older sister she wanted to protect. They were all being crushed by her power. But her mind didn't register it, even as her beloved sister was sent flying to the the wall, crushed by the invisible force that she emitted. Her sole consciousness was focused on the whimpering magician in front of her.
"This is not a game, onee-sama; that 'Knowledge' is trying to kill you! Kill you! Ha ha, don't you know what it means?"
The insane vampire jerked her body forward, her head lolling to her side as she watched the magician with crazed eyes.
"If you don't kill her now, she will wait until you let your guard down then snip snap off your head~ But don't worry onee-sama, I will protect you. I will kill her now, for you."
Remilia coughed, trying to clear her blurry vision to find Flandre descending slowly, approaching the magician with one hand extended, as if trying to reach out. She quickly registered what the younger sister was trying to do, and in a moment of impulse, her body moved.
"No, Flandre! Stop!"
"Squeeze and boom~"
A magnificent red fireworks exploded, followed by a sickening crunch of bones and skull. Flandre let out an insane laugh as she heard the sweet familiar tune, the red raindrops fell into her smiling face, tainting her body in red. But soon enough her laughter died out, as her gaze fell to the silent magician in front of her; one that was still fully intact and alive, unscathed even a bit.
Wait. Something was strange. Why was the magician still there in one piece? Didn't she just 'kyu'ed her into pieces? Why? If it isn't her, then, who did she...
Flandre paled and, slowly, fearfully, switched her gaze toward the disheveled body just a few feet away from her. There was something familiar about the lifeless figure on the ground; that lavender hair, jet black wings, and seemingly dull red eyes. Strange. That thing look some much like—
The blonde vampire took a step back, shivering, hugging herself as if to prevent herself from falling apart. No. It couldn't be possible, right? She just held the 'eye' of that magician and crushed it, right there and then. So it would be impossible for her to crush her beloved sister instead.
That's it! It must be the magician showing her some kind of illusion!
But why? Why was she scared? Why did something hurt so much somewhere? As if to clear up her thought, she heard a familiar giggle in her head; the forever so sweet voice of her insane core.
"Congratulations, Flan~ You just kill the last bit of your family with your own hands~"
"I will find us a place where you won't be a monster, where everyone will accept you as you are."
It's impossible now. I tried to stop you, but it was too late.
I can't feel anything anymore.
But why can I still hear your voice?
A voice so painful that it screams so much in agony?
Then this is wrong. I can't give up now.
I have to return to your side and hold you
before you start breaking apart
"—wake up! Remilia Scarlet!"
The blood red orbs suddenly jolted awake, regaining the light it once lost. Their owner sat up swiftly, but quickly regretted it as pain shot all over her body, spurting out blood from her mouth. She cursed and wiped away her blood, trying to register her surrounding, but quickly met with a purple-clad figure holding her slowly recovering body.
The vampire blinked, staring at the magician as she processed the new information.
"My name is Patchouli Knowledge."
Remilia froze for a while, before regaining her composure and chuckled, but quickly stopped as her body felt like tearing apart once again.
"Stop moving. I have bind your soul back with my philosopher's stone, but nothing else. Now, tell me how to stop that thing. My barrier can't hold on for another five minutes."
That thing? The vampire carefully turned her head toward the source of destruction; just as she thought, it was none other but her little sister, Flandre Scarlet. Her wings grew, just like trees, entwining her like unbreakable thorns; it was the same as that day, the day when their father died. The shock of seeing her one and only sister fell before her must be too much for her, but then Remilia knew.
The only one who can stop her little sister now, was her. She managed to smile and shakily rose to her feet.
"That thing is my sister. And back me up, Patchy. I need to get closer to her."
The magician frowned a bit at her new nickname, but brushed the matter off in an instant.
"Impossible. You can't even move properly now. And even if I open a way for you, your current body will break apart before you reach her—"
"Don't underestimate the Scarlet Devil, Patchy."
"Aha~ But I can't let you do that~"
A voice was heard just a breath away in front of them, and Patchouli leaped away, taking the wounded vampire with her. Well, this is just great; a new problem when you need one. The infamous Flynn materialized before them, watching them with a quite sane smile while madness was clearly painted in her eyes.
"Oh, are you working together now?"
"Whatever, I won't let you get closer to Flan. We're having a quality time now~"
Remilia glared at the blob of madness. This is troublesome. How would she got past her while Patchouli need to take care of Flandre's thorny wings at the same time? But right then, fate decided to give its blessing.
"—mistress! Are you alright? I'm sorry, the magician—aaah, the magician! What is she doing with you here!? And the young mistress! Why are there two of them—"
Good timing. A vine suddenly grabbed on the gatekeeper's ankle, pulling her until she hovered up-side down, facing her employer in an eye-level.
"Thank you, Patchy. And Meiling, take care of that clone. Now."
"..uh, okay? Waaaaah!"
Suddenly she was thrown away, an insane little vampire was waiting for her fall eagerly, baring her fangs.
"It's Meiling~ Fine, I'll play with you for a while~"
"No wait! On second thought, this is impossible, milady!"
But the vampire didn't listen; she was taking a deep breath, planting her feet on the floor as she readied herself to make a jump for her sister. Yes, it was a sink or go; she wouldn't mess up this time. She glanced at the magician, who had started her incantation.
Don't disappoint me now, o' fate
It was morning, and the bird was already chirping happily, giving a song of a new beginning to the whole inhabitant of the port town. But a certain red mansion on the edge of the town stayed silent, as it always did. Not long enough a red-haired girl appeared from behind the front door, walking out toward the bustling town. She might have needed to do grocery shopping and the like, but what about inside? She couldn't be the only person living there, right?
On the main bedroom, laying on the comfy bed was a little girl with lavender hair; her chest rose and fell slowly as she slept peacefully, seemingly too tired to move. Beside her sitting on a chair was another girl, with purple eyes and hair, reading her thick old book as she waited patiently for the seemingly younger girl to wake up.
And finally, she did.
She opened her eyes groggily, flinching from every little movement she did, and the other girl sighed.
"...it's still hard to believe you finally open your eyes. Vampire's regenerative ability is truly frightening."
"Well, if it isn't the magician—"
The vampire chuckled.
"Ah yes, pardon me, Patchy. Are you happen to know what happen to my sister? Oh, and about our 'duel'. I believe I promise you today—"
"Your sister is fine; she's supposedly resting in her room now. And no, thanks. I don't feel like fighting you in your current condition; it wouldn't be challenging."
"...fine, I will accept your challenge anytime—"
"I won't be needing that, too."
The vampire gave the magician a perplexed look, only to find her hiding her face further behind her book, mumbling under her breath.
"I will be staying in this mansion from now on, your library need some clean up."
Did her mind playing trick on her? Didn't that girl want to kill her? No, NEED to kill her? Ah right, maybe she wasn't fully awake yet.
"The 21st 'Knowledge' has the duty to carry on the grudge passed down from its ancestor; to kill the young mistress, Remilia Scarlet. But me, even though the memories of all the previous 'Knowledge' have been implanted on me, I have never met her. And the air-headed reckless sister-complex vampire in front of me is nothing like the cold-hearted murderer I used to believe all this time. So I decided...'
'I will stay by her side, and decide everything with my very own eyes."
Remilia stared dumbfoundedly at the magician who had finally set her book aside; purple against scarlet, their gaze met for what seemed like eternity. And then the vampire laughed. She laughed loudly, whole heartedly, before coughing and whimpering on her bed, but even then chuckling still.
"He he, I see. So you will be staying here, huh?"
"Drop with the formality, Patchy; just call me Remi. I can hear you say the honorific like you get something stuck in your throat. But really, 'air-headed reckless sister-complex vampire' is really too much."
"Truth and Knowledge are walking on a same path."
"I brought tea and some medicine."
Remilia turned her face toward the door, watching as the magician rose and walked toward it. The door was opened to reveal her Chinese servant, who looked at her as if she was seeing a ghost. The redhead threw away the tray she was holding and rushed to her mistress' side, but she was knocked away right in an instant by a smaller figure of a blonde vampire, who hugged her sister tightly, yet carefully, muttering 'thank goodness' over and over. Remilia stroked her hair lovingly, while her eyes wandered to the other two in her room; her Chinese servant who was being scolded for dropping the tea, and her somehow new magician companion. And unconsciously, she smiled.
It was always the same, all this time
We will kill them, kill them all
Everyone that stand in our way
Will disappear into the shadow
But as we embrace our shadow of wickedness
It suddenly feels so natural
As if we're always been like this; a long lost friends
Ah yes, this is what they called 'fate'
A salvation that is waiting for us in the end...