(Written while listening to The End of a Dream OST)


A nostalgic heart runs through a heart of glass.

Shirou opened and closed the palm of his hand directed up at the clouds from where he lay resting on a warm spring's day over a wheat field. The sun overhead should have been particularly baking, but in the spring breeze, the warmth it carried invigorated the spirit.

He was out alone reminiscing as he did when it was Merlin's turn to educate the children and Arturia would tag along to ensure nothing inappropriate was taught. As much as he would like to join them, Agravain would often pull him aside to at least carry out the duties of a King and learn to leave his wife and family on their own. Even Merlin had advised him not to spoil them.

Said kingly duties were often no more than pleasantries or formalities at this point; more to welcome new landed nobles after Morgan's machinations had weeded out the treacherous than anything truly important.

Agravain would just need him to speak one or two words, and then give him some free time while he handled the rest.

He'd rather not waste his time on things better suited for others more versed or caring enough in politics and development. At most, he'd offer advice and innovations where required.

More than just a King, he was a father and husband.

The path to eternity had led here, and this feeling of contentment was inexplicable in its joy.

Arturia had born them another son named Ector after Sir Ector a year after Artus and Annabel. She'd been serious about that third child, and like any parent. One would think with her third kid, she'd be better received as a mother, but she was just as awkward as before. To begin with, she had a tendency to grow soft when flustered with them, but practically showed no mercy when training them.

If she was going to leave bruises and then cry to him afterwards that she may have hit them too hard, then why didn't she show this side of her to her children to dispel her strict mother persona?

Ah, sometimes one's image can be more of an obstacle than a merit, but Arturia was still learning to put aside such thoughts in her new role as Queen rather than King.

Meanwhile, Guinevere had born her own child for Lancelot at roughly the same time as Ector's birth: A Young Galahad. There was a story to this, a rather comedic one in which Lancelot's sense of propriety and gentlemanly etiquette landed him in plenty of binds; his innate womanizing skills surfacing, and difficult to restrain when it was a Knight's duty to assist a fair maiden in need.

Don't even get him started with the quarrel between Guinevere and Gareth when their admiration for Lancelot left them at loggerheads.

-But that's a story for another time.

Regardless, Lancelot wasn't the only womanizer. The behaviour was practically ingrained, Gawain, Gaheris, and even Tristan was no exception, and Gawain was in the top spot for most sought after bachelor as a result.

The rustling of leaves echoed in his ears, the swaying of reeds releasing a soft tune of nature.

In the shadow overcast from his outstretched hand, the darkness shifted into thin strands that gently formed a bracelet around his wrist.

Agatha had taken up residence in his Reality Marble, finding elation at the freedom she enjoyed within and the prospect of sharing Shirou's senses with her own to experience the world.

The Age of Gods was at its twilight.

Agatha had her freedom, but if she stayed anywhere other than his Reality Marble, there was the risk of the world's influence driving her to the Reverse Side, never to come back. Hence her lack of presence. Even Lady Vivian wouldn't be exempt to this.

So many things had occurred since the beginning, and now that it was over, there were only a few things left and many people to thank for their sacrifices.

Change in particular had come to Camelot in no small part due to himself, but even now he knew that he alone wasn't the sole cause of it. To ensure this peace, Arturia's happiness, that man was surely still fighting unseen.

True they may dislike each other on a fundamental level, but such pettiness was put aside in the face of that man's actions.

Only gratitude remained.

Speaking of which, he had to get ready to receive a delegation from the Saxons later in the week in order to make it in time for Kay's wedding with Natalie.

Kay would be marrying into Saxon Royalty after proving himself worthy to Horsa. Nothing was stronger and more binding in this era than political marriage with actual affection. Hence, relations with the Saxons were no longer as overtly hostile as they once were. However, Shirou had an inkling suspicion that his identity as the wielder of Mjolnir (Fake) may also have something to do with it. This coupled with his red hair and distinct features were enough to pass him off as a 'Saxon,' smoothening relations to an acceptable level.

The sun shone down over head, making it practically noon, and signalling the end of Merlin's lessons.

Putting down the heavy burden weighted upon his shoulders, the tense body could finally be laid to rest.

Wind blew softly; the field of vision clear and broad, grassland wavering in the blowing breeze.

Memories were recollections of past events stored within the recesses of one's mind. Sometimes they were bitter, other times cherished, but regardless of anything, it was the ability to recall them and the emotions one had felt that made them remarkable.

Looking up at the same sky, feeling the same things as back then.

This is the fantasy of adolescence, a fierce wish obtained through hardship and a miracle.

He'd always believed that if he kept pursuing that dream, that unstated agreement, it would definitely be realized.

Absently he thought of all these things.

To the past in the streets of his hometown.

-Her dream that surely must have awakened in this life, harbouring a wish carried in the changing wind's zephyrs.

Pushing himself up to a seated position, he supposed that it was about time…he could already hear them coming, his lips curving upward.

Three children were running towards him, a motherly figure smiling endearingly in the background as she approached with an awkward eldest daughter trailing behind.

Before he could react, he was dogpiled by his children and forced flat on his back, smothered in the sound of laughter while Efret cawed soaring protectively from up high.

Caught up in a tangle of limbs and expressions demanding attention, he noticed Arturia and Mordred now looming over him with their gazes. Were they gloating that he was being defeated by children?

Laughter honest and true.

Abruptly, he pulled his rebellious eldest daughter into the dogpile followed by his wife, embracing them as they then embraced the children.

Far, far beyond them all, Merlin quietly nodded, ushering in an end to a prophecy long since spoken.

The skies pan out, the clouds stretch beyond the horizon.

…..

Upon this verdant field of golden wheat, bright dawn, and melodious harmony,

Like that.

The dream announced its end here.

At the end of this long journey of a man endlessly searching, there would perhaps be another his and her story to continue on.

Wish to the stars.


The End


Prequel to Fate-In Time Below.


-{Fate-Lost Time (FLT): Teaser}-

This is the story where it all began, the convergence of time meaningless in the face of possibility: The pursuit of parents to protect their young, and the paradox born from the action…

"-Annabel don't touch that!"

Clashes of steel and grating sparks illuminate one's arrival waking to a world far beyond one's own and halting a clash of heroes with a single word.

"Mommy?"

Disbelief, apprehension, yet seeking that connection that wasn't fully there.

"I'm not your mother."

Teal eyes glimmered in confusion and bewilderment.

"Who are you?"

A single answer was heard, altering the course of the event of a fourth Holy Grail War.

"I-I'm Annabel P. Ashton!"

Fates intertwine.


Thanks for reading and thanks for all the support and my newest patron, Kyriusmerchent!

Man, what a run this story has been. Part of the inspiration I had when I first started this story was how sad I felt after going through the True Dreams End that it got me to start writing. Back then I was focused on my first Naruto story, and the True Dreams End was like 'screw it, you're not going to be working on Naruto until you get this story you have in your mind written out.' It's been years now, and here we all are.

The story was like batting into left field with no canon events to work with which sort of made it malleable in a way to add meaningful backstory to characters and flesh them all out. I know it's been a slow burn, especially as I did have something planned for the Saxon Arc, but also understood that it was kind of stretching so hence a quicker pacing.

In any case, it's been a blast, and even if there had been a few ups and downs, it's still reached this point. Yet for one reason or another, it feels like I'm forgetting something...

Well, moving on.

Thank you all, and I hope even if it's not the best, factual, or truest interpretation of Fate/Stay Night's FATE route, it was at least enjoyable.

Here's too wondering whether people will like the premise of the teaser enough to warrant a chapter. Just like before, I already have an idea in mind, and it won't go away…

I'm feeling somewhat nostalgic like the first time I read True Dreams End.

Oh boy. It's been a journey.

Thanks again!

-Parcasious.


Next update: Fate Hero and Sword

P a treon. com (slash) Parcasious

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