~New Moon~ Chapter Two
Week 1: Shared Perception
Remaining Evenings: 5
I needed to find out more about that Servant.
As lunch rolled around, that single thought was buried into my mind. Lancer’s Strength Parameter was not very high, only boasting a C rank at the moment, but the fact that the enemy tanked it and kept going left me a bit shocked. Had we run into a terrifying opponent in the first round already?
While I processed these thoughts, the door to the room slid open. My blue haired comrade stepped into the classroom. Wearing a long-sleeved blue shirt with a crimson floral pattern and black skirt, she greeted me.
“Afternoon,” she said, smiling softly.
“Hey Myta,” I told her, some concern in my voice. Apparently she picked up on it, since she tilted her head curiously.
“Is something wrong?” she asked.
“Well…” I manned up and told her about the enemy we faced, as the lunch period was nearing its end.
“I see,” she placed her hand on her chin. “Really, both you and Liar seemed to have run into trouble already. Why didn’t either of you activate Shared Perception?”
“It all happened so fast th—wait,” I felt my eyes narrow after registering her first words. “What happened to Liar?”
Liar, whose real name was Tsuchimikado, was the only other male of our group, which consisted of him, Myta, myself, and Rachel. He said he preferred to be called that, since that was his habit. We think it was a habit he took up because of the conflict going on in the world.
I’m not going to lie when I say that Japan is one of the worst places to be, with all the conflict going around there, even compared to the other countries that hadn’t submitted to the Harways yet.
“His opponent got the drop on him, and his Servant needs at least two days to recover. He’s lucky he managed to retrieve his first Cipher Key before the attack. Rachel, on the other hand, shouldn’t have any problems considering her opponent is someone who doesn’t seem to grasp the price of failure.”
In other words, the poor sap is treating it like a game…he won’t be around for the next round.
“Anyway,” she walked over to me slowly and placed her finger on my forehead, “I was just checking up on you, but I’ll do research in the Library and meet you in the evening.”
She traced her finger down to my cheek and smiled softly before departing. My Servant appeared once the class was empty again, and simply stared at the doorway after Myta left. Seconds later, she vanished without a word. I’ll need to talk to her about that later, before it causes any problems.
Misunderstandings from lack of communications weren’t funny in the middle of a war.
I walked into the Library to find Myta sitting at a table, placing her hair behind her ear, while reading a book. Once she noticed me, she closed it, and approached me. Her face had a minor frown.
“There wasn’t enough to go on,” she told me. “I’ll need more information. Hm?” she muttered, turning her back to me and holding a conversation with thin air. It must have been her Servant. “Thank you.”
“What was that about?” I asked.
“My Servant was staking out the Arena entrance and just saw your opponent enter. This would be the ideal time to gather information,” she said, readjusting her glasses. “Go and confront the opponent while Shared Perception is active, and I’ll record the information and have Liar help me sort everything out.”
“What about getting your Cipher Key?” I asked her. We all needed to get closer to the grail, despite the fact that it meant that we would have to fight and kill each other. Helping me shouldn’t hinder her.
“I’ve already retrieved mine,” she said softly. “We girls seem to be having better luck this round. Anyway, get going and activate Shared Perception the moment you enter the Arena.”
Without much to say, I caved and went with Lancer to the Arena Entrance.
First Chimeric Lunar Sea – First Floor
We stepped off the Teleporter Pad.
“Alright,” I told myself out loud, before activating Shared Perception.
waiting for link…
All functions linked;
Shared Perception was activated, with me sending what my senses detected, and Myta receiving the flow of information as if it were her own. My eyes had changed to an illuminated blue color. With the basic link established, I looked over to my Servant and nodded.
We ran to find Baltr.
We finally encountered my opponent, waiting in an open space. He had some kind of book in hand, and his eyes were still as condescending as before. He stretched out his hand and the creature we encountered last time appeared once again, seething with killing intent.
“Eliminate them,” he said, without an ounce of doubt in his words. Where did his confidence come from?
The creature howled, and Lancer stepped in front of me, her spear ready to be used.
“Fylkir,” she addressed me. “I will end this at your command!”
“Then go,” I told her. “But don’t take an unprotected hit.”
“As you wish!” Lancer said, as power began twisting the flow of data around her.
The battle began.
Lancer took off. Cutting through the empty space in no time at all, her spear targeted the creature’s head. The creature avoided it, narrowly moving it to the side, while countering with a side swipe at her body. She leapt into the air and rolled, the blow missing her by mere inches.
She landed and turned, thrusting the spear to perform a Break. The creature performed its own Break at the same time. The two blows clashed, releasing a shockwave that ruffled both my and Baltr’s clothing.
Lancer leapt back and put distance between the two of them. The mad monstrosity began to charge. Lancer was preparing to run the creature through when, Baltr raised his arm and pointed a finger at my Servant.
“Code Cast: loss_str(32);” Six symbols flew from his finger and surrounded my Servant, her arms that rippled with power lost the ability to use her spear to its fullest potential. Her strikes would be as effective as stones against plate mail.
“Lancer, fall back!!” I yelled, and the magic circuits in my body roared. Activating the Formal Wear gloves’ code cast, I called “bomb(16);” and aimed for the monster’s foot and let loose a small explosion that tripped it.
Lancer had put more distance between her and it. The creature soon regained its footing and began a relentless assault, forcing Lancer to constantly dodge the massive, powerful strikes. She struck back with several glancing blows, but they hardly even left a scratch while Baltr’s code cast was still in effect.
“Myta,” I whispered, “make sure you get all of this.”
It took a full minute for the code cast to wear off, during which I kept my eyes between Lancer and Baltr, constantly shifting them to gather as much information as I could. Once strength returned to Lancer’s arms, she went back on the offensive.
Her spear became a blur that scraped at the creature’s body and gouged out portions of its massive frame. I noticed that Baltr was preparing to use another code cast, but I was quicker. Aiming for the spot next to Baltr as a warning, I casted bomb(16); once again.
Under normal circumstances I wouldn’t target an opponent, but this was a war. There were no rules against targeting the enemy inside the Arena, at least not before the SE.RA.PH cut the battle between Servants short. Speaking of which, why wasn’t it interfering now?
Anyway, the blast did nothing against him. He only glared at me, as the book in his hands seemed to have swallowed the blast and protected him. Was it some kind of Defensive Formal Wear against code casts?
“Fylkir!” Lancer cried, drawing my attention to her. “Permission to use my first skill?”
“Granted!” I told her, not willing to draw this battle out any longer.
Magical energy poured out of Lancer, and flames erupted from the spear. Spiraling the tip like a drill, the flames roared and embers scattered. Lancer flew forward, leaving a trail of flickering embers, and the creature brought up both its arms to Guard.
“Hiti Bresta!” Lancer roared, as the spear drove through the Guard without any effort, scattering countless hexagonal tiles that shattered into pieces, as the monstrosity bellowed. The flames swallowed it without mercy, and it fell to the ground, slowly scattering into black particles before completely disappearing.
We killed it. So, now if that was his Servant we defeated, he should also…
“Hmph,” Baltr grunted, unharmed and in one piece. He didn’t even flinch, as he stared at me with piercing eyes. “You managed to defeat it.”
“It wasn’t a Berserker after all,” I mumbled. Baltr smirked in response and raised the book in his hand.
“I’ll admit that was one of the stronger ones, but I doubt your Servant can stand up to a swarm of Aptergoers,” he said, as the atmosphere became hostile. Numerous cyber ghosts appears around him, and darkness swallowed them, twisting and mangling their forms until they became demonic effigies.
“Fylkir,” Lancer said, standing in front of me like an iron wall. “Should we continue? If I can cut through them, we could take him out by risking a penalty.”
“No,” I told her, reaching into my inventory. There were too many risks involved for us to even try. The book, these creatures, his confidence, it would be foolhardy to continue. We only came for information, and we got enough for now. “We’ll fall back.”
I pulled out a Return Crystal and crushed it in my hands. Lancer and I both had our bodies torn apart into individual bytes and spirited away to the outside of the Arena.
Back in our room, Lancer was fast asleep. I didn’t wake her, since I was tired myself. I shut the Shared Perception off once we were outside the Arena. Hopefully, we could compare notes tomorrow and get some answers.
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