The first time I saw the show's theme (Take a step forward, and try!), I thought the story will follow Yusaku, this normal guy who, after a Duel with someone famous/important, emerges victorious and starts a journey. Instead, we got Lost Incident, Hanoi, computer viruses, a badass rival named after a gun- you get the drill. I enjoyed VRAINS so far- maybe I didn't like one or two things here and there- but that won't stop me from writing a retell.

In a review of VRAINS Overdrive!, MaMcMu wrote:

Do you plan on writing an original YuGiOh! story that takes place in its own universe with its own "Yu" hero? If so, I highly recommend making "Yukio", the original Yu hero, start off timid and cowardly who never Dueled in his life.

A kind thank you to MaMcMu who actually gave me this starting idea!

Disclaimer: I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh VRAINS, its characters, or any of its cards. Only my OCs and OC cards.


Turn 1:

The New Battle Begins


What if you could gift someone or something free will?

Is that even possible? Well, it is.

How do I know? Because I am that something.

An explosion resounded in the distance, setting a simple yet beautiful green field on fire, accompanied by scared cries that didn't belong to humans, but futuristic Duel Monsters. They were running towards a tall tower in the distance, followed by a large, mechanical dragon clad in black armor decorated with green orbs, its equally green eyes staring down at its prey.

Opening its maw as energy began charging in it, it looked like the dragon was about to unleash its next attack, but it was interrupted by another Duel Monster that leaped towards it, swinging the sword it held at the dragon.

A nasty gash now decorated the dragon's head, and it fell to the ground with a roar of pain.

"Well done, Dark Knight!" a male voice exclaimed, and the Duel Monster with the sword, which was clad in violet gray armor with spikes, that left some of its pitch-black skin with purple energy circuits bare, had two wings with bat-designs and a blue symbol on its left shoulder plate, gave a thumbs up to the male.

Speaking of him, the male was urging the Duel Monsters with a hand to head towards the tall tower. "OK, everyone head to the Ignis Tower! Be nice and don't push others, or it'll make a bigger mess- I said no pushing!"

The Duel Monster which he shouted at- a small white being with a black visor and round blue eyes- made a cute and apologetic 'Bitto', and made sure to do as it was instructed.

The male was fairly young, maybe eighteen, and had fair skin, yellow eyes with rectangular pupils, black shoulder length, spiky hair with yellow tips, along with purple bangs with pink highlights over his forehead, and wore a light purple formal shirt with a black handkerchief tie, vest, pants, and cape, and a pair of purple earrings with orange studs that resemble heads.

"Kuri kuri ku!" a Duel Monster rushed to his side, this one being a small dark blue being with round blue eyes and a tail which ended with a red arrow.

"Don't worry, Linkuriboh." he pated the Monster on the head. "I'll be alright. You follow the others into the Dungeons."

Linkuriboh jumped up and down his head, which made him puff his cheeks. "Don't be like that! I promise I'll find you, 'kay?"

"Kuri ku..." Linkuriboh didn't seem so sure about that but nodded nonetheless.

"Now go!" he shouted, and the Duel Monster flew away with the others. As they talked, a new evil dragon joined the first, and they both aimed another attack at the Ignis Tower. "Dark Knight, a little help here!"

The knight from before made a second attack, but this time, both dragons expected it and successfully dodged it. One of the two managed to fire a beam from its maw, but instead of striking the tower, a blue barrier formed around it and deflected the beam.

"As expected, you defend that tower with your life, Ignis."

The male watched as, from the smoke created by the flames the first dragon caused, a lone figure walked out. It was another male, this one having tan skin man with featureless, yellow eyes, dark crimson hair with red highlights, and wearing a white sleeveless coat with a white jumpsuit under it, black and red boots, a mask with a transparent visor, and gold bullet-shaped earrings.

"And as I expected, you play dirty and attack us without a heads up."

"I didn't come here to listen to your whining, Ignis." the masked man glared at the other's words. "You and those Cyberse abominations can't hide from me. Make this quick and die!"

"Die? The great me?" Ignis chuckled with an exasperate shook of his head. He gave a smirk. "Thanks, but I'll pass on that kind offer. If you want me to perish, you'll have to sweat for it!"

"Hoh? You want a Duel?" the masked man smirked himself, raising his left arm, revealing a wristband, which had a black underpart with red highlights divided with a golden strip by a white upperpart, and had a black touchscreen. "That won't happen!" his smirk vanished as he said those words, and pointed at Ignis with a finger. "Cracking Dragon!"

A roar echoed behind Ignis, which made him gasp. He only had time to turn around before a third black dragon, named Cracking Dragon by the looks of things, fired a beam at him. Not even the knight was ready for this, and the male was hit in the face.

The explosion sent him flying onto the ground, and he gave a loud grunt of pain.

"Not... nice...!" he hissed, clenching his damaged left hip. He gestured to his knight and the Ignis Tower. "Run, Dark Knight! This is an order!"

Just like Linkuriboh, the knight hesitated before running towards the tower, dodging in time another attack of the third Cracking Dragon. Once it entered the tower, its door closed with a loud echo, prompting the masked man to frown.

"We know the Ignis algorithm better than anyone, Ignis!" he spat. "Don't think a protected tower will save your Cyberse comrades!"

"Who said..." he let out a pained smirk. "That was my plan?"

"What?" the masked man's eyes widen a little. The ground suddenly shook, which almost made him lose his balance. "What's happening!? What did you do!?"

"What does it look like, Mr. I can't see the obvious!?" Ignis shouted back. "This is our ticket to freedom!"

The Ignis Tower literally took off, leaving the area and flying towards the sky. Instead of vanishing in space, the tower crushed into a layer that formed the sky, shattering it and revealing a virtual web.

"Don't allow them to escape!" the masked man cried out, his three Cracking Dragons firing their beams at the rocket-tower in vain, seeing how they were easily deflected by the barrier. "Ignis expected me to play dirty so he sacrificed himself...!" he realized, glaring at the other male- only to see him gone!

"Bye-bye!" he heard a shout from above, seeing Ignis leaving through the same hole in the sky.

"Get him!" upon his command, a Cracking Dragon dived forward. The male's eyes bulged out of their sockets and he gave a yelp, flying faster. That proved useless as the dragon opened its maw and crushed him in one bite.

The fugitive could only scream in immense pain as his body was torn apart, exploding in purple, data particles. But it didn't escape the masked man's notice that one of the male's eyes avoided destruction, and fell into the virtual web, vanishing.

"Damn it! He escaped!" the masked man gritted his teeth. With a snap of his fingers, a green, round portal opened beneath his feet, and he vanished from the destroyed world together with his dragons.

He reappeared through the same portal in a dark room, lit by flowing light blue and green highlights made of data across the floor. He threw an arm forward, summoning numerous, red triangle-shaped screens which immediately started processing data, coordinates, and numbers.

"Search for his remains and the Cyberse!" he ordered. "We can't give them the time to hide in the network and potentially escape our grasp for eternity!" he lowered his arm and clenched its fist, frowning. Father... he thought. I'll accomplish your wish. I'll save humanity.

Five years later...

"I now have the rights to officially declare school doesn't make sense."

"Don't say that, Yusuke."

"Jin, be serious! I stayed up all night to study this parabola or whatever and you, who forgot to study according to your own words, got a higher mark! Does that make sense?"

"Yes, it does. If you wouldn't sleep in class, you'd listen to the lesson and learn quicker. Mogami-sensei is a great math teacher."

"But he talks so slowly! He's challenging you to fall asleep!"

The person called Jin gave an exasperated sigh, rubbing his temple to calm down. He was a teenage boy with fair skin, gray eyes, long and unkempt purple hair which reached past his shoulder, and wore the classic male uniform belonging to Den City High School.

His friend Yusuke wore the same attire, signaling he attended the same school. Yusuke was a teenage boy and had fair skin too, but his eyes were a royal blue, and his yellow hair in the back spiked into two light blue bangs at the bottom near his neck and pointed outward, and in the front, it had a right portion sectioned into three spiky bangs which covered his right cheek, and a light blue, spiky bang with yellow accents covered his forehead on the left side.

School was over for today, and the two teens were walking towards the city's courtyard, where Jin's older brother works.

"Let's not worry about that for now, shall we?" Jin suggested, and Yusuke didn't look contrary to that. "Be happy you didn't get an F."

"Thank god that didn't happen." Yusuke gave an exhale of relief. "Ichiko would've killed me."

Jin smiled faintly at the reminder of his best friend's sister who, last time Yusuke brought an F home, took away his phone, laptop, and TV for an entire week with their mother's approval. Since their parents are working abroad, it's up to Ichiko to do this kind of stuff and Jin respects her stern decisions- he knows the pain too, after all, he has an older brother who does the same.

Jin's eyebrows furrowed as something around his wrist buzzed. He raised his left arm, revealing a gray wristband with a yellow highlight and had a black touchscreen shaped like an elongated hexagon. His brother usually contacts him on the phone if something is wrong, so who...?

"Ah." Jin saw who sent him a message. It said [Kusanagi, the Charismas are going to Duel tonight! Will you watch it with me at the courtyard!?] and was sent from Shima Naoki.

"Is it Kusanagi-san?"

Jin shook his head at Yusuke's question. "No, it's Shima. He wants to watch Duels together, but I already have to help Nii-san tonight, so I'll turn him down." Not that I'd want his company. he thought but not said, knowing Yusuke knew that already. Naoki just talks too much and loudly, even in school, during lessons, that's why Jin- and the class in general- sometimes avoid him.

"Duels?" Yusuke raised an eyebrow in confusion. He then frowned. "Oh, that children's card game."

"It's not just for children, even adults play it." Jin remarked with a half stare.

"Yeah, yeah, I know." Yusuke quickly added. Better avoid this argument; in the past, they almost fought over it. Jin and even his older brother loved playing Duel Monsters since they were kids, but Yusuke thinks it's a waste of time.

OK, maybe not a waste of time seeing VRAINS is a thing and tournaments are held- Anyway, he doesn't see the point in Dueling and it's like playing chess. A total bore and too difficult. One time, he was about to learn its rules, but his brain started malfunctioning: those were too many damn rules for a card game!

The silence between them was interrupted by Jin's stomach, which rumbled loudly, prompting his cheeks to be dusted pink in embarrassment.

"...Let's hurry." Jin lowered his arm, attention back at the road. "I'm hungry."

In VRAINS...

In Den City, a Virtual Reality space called LINK VRAINS has been developed by SOL Technologies and can be accessed by the entire world. By using LINK VRAINS, which was built inside the Network System, Duels unfold where any Duelist can take on a new appearance by simply creating an avatar.

LINK VRAINS is divided into two major Sectors. The first is called RLA, short for "Real Life Areas", and is composed of servers that are identical copies of IRL locations. The second is IVS, short for "In VRAINS", and as its name suggests, its a fictional location designed by SOL Technologies.

White drones with red sirens attached to their sides that belonged to SOL were patroling IVS, searching for something. As they passed a cable that ran across the entire IVS, a gray eye with purple accents materialized on it, glaring at the drones with its single yellow iris and purple pupil.

The eye widen as the drones abruptly turned around, their sirens going off.

"They found me!" it exclaimed with a male voice. He slid along the cable, running away from the chasing machines.

Hours later, in IRL at SOL Technologies...

Entering the company's meeting room reserved to the staff was Akira Zaizen, the current Security Manager of LINK VRAINS, a young man with fair skin, blue and teal hair, pink eyes, wearing a dignified suit that had a black tie and shoes of the same color matched to it.

The meeting room was rather empty, consisting of a small platform by the entrance of a dark hallway. As Akira arrived at the platform's edge, his surroundings were taken over by an endless chessboard, which had a cloudy sky tinted orange like during a sunset, and an oversized Bishop.

"Zaizen," the giant chess piece started talking. "Is it true Ignis has been spotted?"

"Yes, Bishop-sama." he nodded. "We know for sure he's somewhere inside our company's IVS server. We're trying to track him down as we speak."

"SOL Technologies has been the leading force in the network for many years," Bishop started explaining. "And that is all thanks to the Data Material that has been created from Ignis and the Cyberse race. But five years ago, due to the attack from Knights of Hanoi, the Cyberse World was destroyed and we lost contact with the Ignis and Cyberse."

"Due to this removal, our supply of Data Material has steadily been decreasing. The performance of the network has fallen by 30% and the media's trying to put our company under a bad spotlight with negate publicity." Akira continued, knowing fully well where this was going. Bishop had a tendency of narrating SOL's current position before making a severe note.

"That's right." Bishop said. "If the Ignis or Cyberse remain undiscovered, or worse, are destroyed by Hanoi, then a great discord will spread throughout the network. If that happens, the fate of our company's future is quite grim. We must find the Ignis or the Cyberse before that happens."

"Understood." Akira bowed.

"You carry a big burden on your shoulders, Zaizen." Bishop added. "If you were to fail, the consequences that you'll suffer aren't easygoing."

With those words, Bishop and the chessboard vanished, and the meeting room returned to normal.

"I know there will be consequences. For LINK VRAINS's sake..." Akira narrowed his eyes. We might have to use the City Scan after all. he thought before leaving.

In VRAINS at Hanoi...

The masked man, which attacked the Cyberse World, was standing in a room of his H.Q. when a new person appeared through a green portal, this one being a teenage boy with fair skin, gray hair with a bang that ran over the right part of his face, teal eyes, and wearing a white suit and matching white shoes.

"Revolver-sama," the grey-haired youth started politely. "We've found traces of Ignis."

"If we let SOL Technologies capture him first, then there's a chance Ignis will lead them to the Dungeons." the person called Revolver frowned. "If that happens, our efforts will have been for naught. We must find him first."

"Yes." the other male nodded. "According to Emi-san's info, SOL has already spotted Ignis and has dispatched their little drones. If this chase goes on with no positive result for SOL, there's a chance they'll perform a City Scan."

"That's perfect." Revolver smirked. "During a City Scan, the security levels greatly decrease. It will be our perfect chance to strike."

"There's one other concern." the gray-haired youth revealed. "An unknown individual has been hindering our efforts. Please, look at this."

He snapped his fingers, causing several windows to open around them, all of them showing one figure in common, however, this person always managed to keep their identity hidden by the shadows. The only distinguishable aspects he possessed were two feline ears and long hair.

"Not only has this person been attacking our Knights," he gestured to a footage with the unknown figure fighting a tall man wearing a white uniform with green accents, a hooded white coat that covered his body and reached the back of his knees, and wearing a mask that covered his face except for the mouth. "But disrupted SOL, too."

He gestured to another footage, this one showing the unknown figure destroying SOL's drones. Revolver seemed to analyze each window with extreme care, placing a hand on his hip in the meantime.

"A third party?" he thought aloud. "Or maybe SOL wants to confuse us? No, damaging their property isn't a move akin to SOL's usual tactics... moreover, if the media discovers this, SOL would be attacked by negative publicity. Spectre, do we have other info on them?"

"We don't, Revolver-sama." Spectre shook his head in apology. "They avoid all of our tracking methods and erase their activity from VRAINS's logs. They're an adept hacker."

"That is quite interesting, but leave them alone for now." Revolver said. "Searching for Ignis is our main priority. If they continue to disrupt our plans, you have permission to coping with them."

"Of course, and thank you, Revolver-sama." Spectre gave a sly grin before bowing, and vanished through the green portal.

In the evening, in IRL at the courtyard...

The sky started to turn orange as the sun was setting, and Yusuke was sitting at a table near the food truck owned by Jin's older brother and was finishing his fried potatoes inside a craft paper bag with the truck's insignia on it.

Jin was already helping inside the truck, his school jacket discarded and replaced by an apron, and wore a hat. His older brother, Kusanagi Shoichi, a young man with fair skin, gray eyes, purple hair reaching the base of his neck with multiple small bangs over his forehead, a small goatee, wearing a purple hoodie and light blue shirt, and teal pants tucked into boots, was also working and wearing an identical apron.

"Not many people are stopping by..." Yusuke remarked, glancing at the siblings. He knew Jin and Shoichi's only way of obtaining money is through Café Nagi, but whenever he was around, he didn't see many people purchase a thing. It made his insides turn a little in concern; if this job isn't profitable, they can't pay for their apartment's rent, for the truck- well, for everything.

"Don't worry, Yusuke!" Shoichi flashed him an assuring smile. "Café Nagi gets a large number of customers at night. Especially on nights like today!"

"Will there be an Event in VRAINS?" he asked, eating the last fried potato. Man, Shoichi's fast food was the best! The only reason he doesn't like to eat it is that Shoichi wouldn't let him pay, and he's not too found at getting Café Nagi's food for free.

The young man blinked in surprise. "You started following Duel Monsters recently?"

"Of course not." Yusuke sighed with a shook of his head. "Jin mentioned something about Duels earlier."

"Oh, that makes sense." Shoichi nodded. Yusuke starts to Duel? Ha! That's a good one. "Yes, there's an event in VRAINS. Three Duelists will be selected at random and get the chance to challenge a Charisma Duelist of their choosing. Since the courtyard will show a live broadcast with the MC commentating it, a lot of people will gather here."

"Wait, wouldn't that mean Shima will be here, too?"

"Yes." Jin shrugged at Yusuke's question. "But he won't come to buy anything. He'll be too focused on cheering for all three Charismas."

"I see."

"Shouldn't you start heading home, Yusuke?"

"Eh?" he blinked twice. "Why?"

"We have a history assignment for tomorrow. Have you done it? I'm going to be stuck here all night and I don't have the work here with me- so you're alone on this one."

"Crap..." Yusuke scratched the back of his head with a frown. He stood, his rucksack in hand. "Thanks for the reminder, Jin. Good luck for tonight you two!"

"See you tomorrow." he heard Jin's voice from behind, running away.

Luckily for him, his and his sister's apartment was a few blocks from the courtyard, so he didn't have to run a large deal until arriving home. He opened the door with his key, entered, and immediately heard his sister's rushing footsteps.

"It was about time!" Ichiko emerged from the bathroom, frustration evident on her face. "Where were you!? And why is your phone turned off?"

Damn it, he forgot to turn it back on after school was over... "Sorry." Yusuke said, closing the door behind him and taking his jacket off. "I forgot to turn it on. I was with Jin and Kusanagi-san."

That's when he noted how elegantly she was dressed. Ichiko was a pretty, eighteen years old female with fair skin, light purple eyes, long yellow hair with its half being tied up into a loop ending in a ponytail, light blue bangs over her forehead, and currently wore a white broadcloth with long sleeves and off shoulders, blue jeans, and brown shoes.

"Oh." Yusuke gave a smirk. "You and Ryo are going out?"

"Yes, yes, we are!" Ichiko glared at him with a blush. Ryo was a nice guy Yusuke met once in these last three weeks and he was happy her sister got into a relationship with him. But this is their first time going on a date...

"So you're official now?" and he loves teasing her sister. It's usually Ichiko getting to his nerves, so he wasn't contrary to a role reversal.

"Don't you dare spread a word to Mother and Father!" she hissed. "Tonight, when the date's over, when I'm sure we're a thing, I want to tell them myself. Because you," she pointed an accusing finger at her brother. "Would say something stupid and ruin everything."

"Why I'd never!"

"...When our parents saw Ryo for the first time through a video call, you said he and I had sex in the room next door. You forgot how many hours it took me to explain to them it didn't happen!?"

"For the record, it was a joke."

"Which didn't end well." Ichiko added with a sigh. She checked the time on her phone before putting it into her brown purse. "Off I go. I left some food in the fridge in case you hungry."

"Thanks." Yusuke smiled. "And have a nice date."

She was about to talk when she stopped. She smiled instead. "...Thanks." she gave him a quick hug before leaving, locking the door as she left. Yusuke sighed and walked to his room while praying the history assignment wasn't difficult.

At night, in VRAINS's RLA Sector...

The crowd was going wild, both in VRAINS and IRL. The courtyard in Den City was full, every live stream had more than one million viewers, and the crowd in VRAINS around each Charisma Duelist was huge.

[Are you all excited for this!?] the MC's voice echoed in the three servers and the courtyard. [Exciting Duels by the Charisma Duelists are about to begin in LINK VRAINS! In the first area, using a Gouki deck, is LINK VRAINS's number one Charisma- Go Onizuka!]

Following those words, the cameras turned to a tan-skinned young man with a built and bulky body, two-toned hair, a neatly trimmed brown chin beard, and wore a greenish-gray jacket with a separate collar and a gold, animal-head-shaped necklace, dark pants, a golden belt with a red stone, boots, fingerless gloves, and gold plates covered his arms and abdomen.

The gold plate around his left wrist had an elongated hexagon-shaped screen, a dark red band that featured a single spike on each side, and yellow accents. Go was standing confidently near the Eiffel Tower in RLA's France Server.

[In the second area, using a Trickstar deck, we have LINK VRAINS's number two Charisma- Blue Angel!]

The cameras now showed a fair-skinned teenage girl with long blue hair tied into two long strands with blue ribbons, eyes and eyebrows of the same blue color, a green clover tattoo on her right cheek, and wore a blue choker, pink heart-shaped winged earrings, a white sleeveless shirt with a blue necktie, a blue and pink dress, and dark blue thigh-high socks, boots with wings, and had a pair of white wings.

The idol smiled to the viewers, raising her hands to wave, thus revealing a light blue wristband shaped like a tulip flower, which had a small dark blue gem at the back and a white armband with a glowing light blue stripe, and possessed a black screen. She was at Florence in RLA's Italy Server on a rooftop.

[Last but not least, in the third area, using a high-Level Warrior-type deck, we have LINK VRAINS's number three Charisma- Oranos!]

The cameras focused on the last, famous person, a fair-skinned young man with dark hair, which resembled short tentacles hanging down with curled up ends and a left eye covered by bangs, a green right eyes, had his torso covered in bandages that reached his biceps where one armband was on each side, his arms mostly bare bar gray armguards, a green bandanna knotted around his neck, dark teal pants, bandages wrapped around his shins, and black shoes.

Oranos raised his left hand and clenched it, revealing his armguard had an elongated oval-shaped crimson screen and green accents. He was standing on the Great Wall in RLA's China Server.

[Our opponents are from France, Italy, and China respectively, thus the battlefield have also been chosen!] the MC shouted. [To all who have access, come to LINK VRAINS! And for those already here, pay attention to the screen!]

In VRAINS's IVS Sector...

SOL Technologies' City Scan just started, a searchlight illuminating the virtual city with its blue light, causing the buildings it flashed upon to glitch and obtain a bluish shade.

The eye from before was on a rooftop, watching this event with evident shock and worry.

"This is bad!" he exclaimed. "At this rate, I won't have anywhere to run!" he quickly slid away, as far as possible from the searchlight.

In VRAINS at Hanoi...

The red triangle-shaped screens showed dropping numbers as soon as the City Scan began.

"The security level of LINK VRAINS has begun declining." Spectre pointed out.

"This moment is just what we were waiting for." Revolver smirked. He made a gesture with his hand, and through green portals, three Knights logged into the room bowing on one knee each. The only distinguishable trait they had was the color of their uniform's accents; they were green, purple, and yellow.

"Revolver-sama," Green started. "You called?"

"Ignis will surely run away through LINK VRAINS." Revolver glared after that. "Use any necessary method to capture him!"

"Roger." the three Knights vanished in unison.

In IRL at SOL Technologies...

Alarms echoed in the Security Bureau moments later after the Scan started, the entire staff starting to type rapidly on their computers.

"There's an intruder in the system!" a Data Security Analyst shouted. He brought up three visuals that showed the three Knights on separate Cracking Dragons attacking a firewall. "The firewall's going to break, we can't stop it!"

True to his words, the firewall shattered and they entered the system.

"They got through!" another Analyst shouted. "One's headed for the IVS Sector and two for the RLA Sector!"

"Alert the people in VRAINS to immediately log out!" Akira ordered from his seat, his teeth grit. "I knew this was dangerous, but Bishop insisted..." he whispered. "We couldn't postpone the Event since we did it last month already..." And Aoi just happens to be in VRAINS at the moment! he added in thought.

"They can't!" the Analyst from before added, prompting Akira's eyes to widen. "The people near the Knights of Hanoi's areas can't log out!"

"What!?" he gasped.

In IRL at the courtyard...

"Hey, what's going on?"

"What's this about?"

"Technical difficulties...?"

Were the large crowd's confused questions as the screens started glitching for an unknown reason.

"Nii-san, what was SOL's recent activity?" Jin asked with a frown. Could this be...?

"They updated the security in Den City's network," Shoichi explained, him frowning, too. "I heard info they're searching for an A.I. program. In order to find it, it's likely they will perform a City Scan..."

"Which means to become an easy target for Hanoi." Jin finished for him.

"Yeah." Shoichi nodded, glaring at the screens.

One of the screens showed France where a hole broke in the sky and a Cracking Dragon emerged, shocking about everyone in that Server and in the courtyard, except the Kusanagi brothers. Another dragon flew across Italy and a third let out a roar in the IVS Sector.

The roar caused some screens to break and the crowd had to make a run for it before any shards could fall on their heads. The screens which weren't damaged showed a Knight attacking avatars with his dragon, deleting their account with its scorching flames.

"This is Hanoi in action..." Jin muttered, horrified by this cruelty.

"It's good I was parked at a long distance..." Shoichi said. "More than probably, SOL went for the City Scan and Hanoi used that to their advantage."

In VRAINS's IVS Sector...

"I-I can't find a way out!" the eye panicked, sliding across the virtual walls. "Where!? Where is it!?"

"I found you, Ignis!" a Knight's shout came from the distance. Ignis saw him and his dragon flying towards him, destroying any debris they passed by ramming into them.

"Ah! At this rate he's going to catch me!" he cried out. His eye widen as a blue cable materialized in front of him, and he gasped in joy. "My way out!" he jumped onto it and slid way.

"I won't let you escape!" Yellow shouted, gesturing to his dragon.

It roared in acknowledgment before unleashing a beam from its maw, which was about to hit Ignis, but before it could, the A.I. arrived at the cable's end and vanished through a portal.

"It vanished! Where!?" Yellow gritted his teeth as Cracking Dragon's attack hit a building, causing it to explode.

"If you want to know, follow me!"

His head jerked to the side at the new voice's direction, but he wasn't able to see who talked as the person entered a large portal. Yellow Knight didn't know where Ignis vanished to, so he didn't have many choices and decided to follow the person.

Once through the portal, he found himself in the Italy Server, Blue Angel running on the destroyed street under his dragon.

The voice from before... I'm sure it was a male voice. Yellow frowned. A voice-changing program? Better be safe than sorry. "Vanish!" he shouted and Cracking Dragon let loose of flames at the Duel idol.

She gasped in fear after seeing a Knight caught up to her, but before the flames reached her, someone grabbed her and pulled her out of the way. Blue Angel stared at her savior in surprise.

"Thanks... for the save." she muttered. "Who are you?"

In front of her was a teenage boy with tan skin, deep violet eyes, and long hair which reached the upper part of his back, was divided into two big segments, was seemingly defying gravity a little, and was colored a whitish-gray. He wore a white bodysuit with yellow trims that left his abdomen, hips, and underpart of his back exposed, and was colored a deep purple from his knees towards his feet, the underpart of his arms, and the trims of his sleeves. His hands were covered by white gloves with deep purple palms, a lavender crystal adorned his chest, and wore yellow boots with barely visible high-heels and the same lavender crystal on their toe caps. Last but not least, he had whitish-gray feline ears sticking out of his head instead of human ears.

"Zaroday." the youth introduced himself with a smile.

"That voice..." Yellow growled. That's the male voice from before! "You're the one who helped Ignis escape!"

"Actually, I never stated I helped him or that he escaped." Zeroday remarked. He then smirked, raising his left hand to reveal a golden wristband with a white armband and a glowing purple stripe that had an oval, lavender screen. "But if you were to win against me, I'd tell you."

Revolver and Akira were surprised by the sudden challenge. By the Knight's words, this person stopped him from capturing Ignis... just who is he?

Akira was also happy he made it in time to save his younger sister, but he's not going to let him escape if he knows about Ignis' whereabouts. According to his staff, they have no info about him... he's a third party.

Revolver let out a smirk. According to Spectre, Zeroday matched the appearance of their unknown enemy. This is the perfect occasion to learn more about this hacker and opponent.

"Hmph, fine." Yellow sneered. "You'll learn what happens when you oppose Hanoi!"

"Nice trashtalk." Zeroday commented.

In IRL at the courtyard...

"He raised his Duel Disk... he's going to Duel Hanoi!?" a teenage boy gasped in shock, watching the events unfold on a remaining screen. He had fair skin, green hair, small height and a chubby built, and wore Den City High School's male uniform.

"It seems so." he turned to see Jin and Shoichi walked up to him. "Are you alright, Shima?"

"Eh, Kusanagi? What are you doing here!?" Naoki demanded. "You said you had other things to do!"

"I was helping Nii-san." Jin replied with a raised eyebrow. "And thanks for welcoming my concern with open arms."

"Zaroday..." Shoichi muttered. "Shima-kun, have you heard of him by any chance?"

"Eh? Zeroday?" Naoki placed a hand to his chin in thought. "N-No, this is the first time I hear it..."

In VRAINS's RLA Sector...

Who is he? He's capturing my spotlight! Go thought in irritation, staring at Zeroday through a large screen near his location. Whatever. I need to steal it back, that's all. Defeating this opponent will be enough to do that!

Turning his gaze back at the Purple Knight, he smirked. "Ore no turn! Draw!"

Current Duel status:

TURN 2

Knight of Hanoi - LP: 4000

Hand: 1 card

Field: controls Cracking Dragon (Dark / Machine / Effect / ATK: 3000 / DEF: 0 / LV: 8) in the Middle Main Monster Zone, and has 1 set card in the Spell & Trap Zone

GO Onizuka - LP: 4000

Hand: 6 cards

Field: nothing

Go swiped his hand in front of himself, causing six cards to appear. He pointed at one of them and it was played. "From my hand, I summon Gouki Suprex!"

Materializing before him was a humanoid wrestler clad in a dinosaur-themed suit with long hair.

Gouki Suprex: Earth / Warrior / Effect / ATK: 1800 / DEF: 0 / LV: 4

"Cracking Dragon's effect activates!" Purple abruptly declared. "When my opponent Normal or Special Summons a Monster, until the end of this turn, that Monster loses 200 Attack times it Level, and my opponent takes damage equal to the lowered amount! Crack Fall!"

"What!?" Go gritted his teeth as Cracking Dragon's orbs over its body released strong winds that blew him and his Monster back.

(Gouki Suprex: ATK 1800→1000)

GO Onizuka: LP 4000 - 800 = 3200

"That wasn't a bad punch, but it won't stop me." Go straightened out. "I activate Suprex's effect! When it's Normal Summoned, I can Special Summon a Gouki from my hand! Appear, Gouki Twistcobra!"

A humanoid wrestler clad in a snake-themed suit appeared next.

Gouki Twistcobra: Earth / Warrior / Effect / ATK: 1600 / DEF: 0 / LV: 3

"Crack Fall!" Purple exclaimed and the scene from before repeated itself.

(Gouki Twistcobra: ATK 1600→1000)

GO Onizuka: LP 3200 - 600 = 2600

"Arawarero, ore-sama no sākitto!" Go pointed at the sky at those words, a blue ray erupting from his finger and conjured a square-shaped portal with eight arrows. "The summoning conditions are two "Gouki" Monsters! I set Suprex and Twistcobra in the Link Markers!"

His two monsters turned into twisters of wind and entered two arrows, causing them to glow. "Link Summon! Link 2! Gouki Jet Ogre!"

A humanoid wrestler with a jetpack attached to its back and holding a sword emerged from the portal and landed in the Extra Monster Zone on Go's right.

Gouki Jet Ogre: Earth / Warrior / Effect / ATK: 2000 / Link 2: Left, Bottom

"Damn it, Link Monsters don't have Levels, so Crack Fall can't be used now..." Purple growled. "You plan on ending it with a Link Monster? Don't make me laugh! That thing doesn't even come close in defeating Hanoi's mighty weapon!"

"Then it's a good thing I wasn't planning on using Jet Ogre in the first place!" Go smirked. "At this moment, the effects of Suprex and Twistcobra activate since they were sent from the field to the Graveyard. I add a "Gouki" card, except a copy of themselves, from my deck to my hand!"

He tore two new cards out of his Duel Disk and played one of them.

"I activate the Spell Card Gouki Poison Mist!" he shouted. "This card inflicts 700 damage to my opponent and seals the set Spell and Trap Cards they currently control for this turn!"

A stream of poison-like liquid was shot out of the card, hitting Purple in the chest and making him hiss in pain.

Knight of Hanoi: 4000 - 700 = 3300

Purple glancing at his set card, which was Sakuretsu Armor. Damn it, I can't use it this turn due to Poison Mist's effect...

"Next, I activate the Spell Card Gouki Re-Match!" Go stated, playing the second card he acquired. "I target two Gouki's in my Graveyard with different Levels and Special Summon them in defense mode! Resurrect, Suprex, Twistcobra!"

A dark purple with purple codes opened before him as the two Monsters emerged from it with their 0 DEF.

"You fool!" Purple laughed. "Crack Fall activates-"

"No, it won't!" Go talked over him, confusing him. "Since I summoned two Monsters in unison, your dragon's effect can't be activated!"

"What!?" Purple gasped in shock.

"Do you even know the effects of your card?" Go asked with a raised eyebrow. He then smirked. "Let's move on! Appear again, ore-sama no sākitto!"

Another Link Portal appeared. "The summoning conditions are two or more "Gouki" Monsters! I set Suprex and the Link 2 Jet Ogre in the Link Markers!"

His two monsters turned into three twisters of wind and entered three arrows.

"Link Summon! Appear, Link 3! Gouki The Great Ogre!"

A humanoid wrestler with a mantle around its shoulders and holding an axe emerged from the portal and landed in the Extra Monster Zone on Go's right.

Gouki The Great Ogre: Earth / Warrior / Effect / ATK: 2600 / Link 3: Bottom-Left, Bottom, Bottom-Right

"Jet Ogre's effect activates!" Go stated. "Since it was sent from the field to the Graveyard, I can increase the Attack of all Gouki's I currently control by 500 until the end of this turn!"

(Gouki The Great Ogre: ATK 2600→3100; Gouki Twistcobra: ATK 1600→2100)

"3100 Attack!?" Purple gasped. "It surpassed Cracking Dragon's Attack!?"

"I activate the Continuous Spell Gouki Shout and Battle!" Go threw his arm forward. "The Great Ogre attacks Cracking Dragon! At this moment, Gouki Shout's effect activates! When a Gouki attacks, it gains 300 Attack for each Gouki I control during the Damage Step only! Do it, Ogre Axe!"

(Gouki The Great Ogre: ATK 3100→3700)

With a mighty swing of its axe, the dragon's head was bisected and exploded, causing Purple's body to glitch by the backlash.

Knight of Hanoi: 3300 - 700 = 2500

(Gouki The Great Ogre: ATK 3700→3100)

"Since Link Monsters don't have Levels, Cracking Dragon's other effect can't protect itself... But now, you don't have any more attacks to make!" Purple gave a sinister grin. "On my next turn, I will-"

"You won't get the chance!" Go interrupted him again. "This ends here! I activate the Quick-Play Spell Gouki Double Blow!" a card, which depicted Suprex punching Battlin' Boxer Big Bandage with the same fist twice, appeared. "I destroy a "Gouki" card I control and target a Gouki which attacked this turn. Of course, I destroy Shout and target The Great Ogre! Through Double Blow's effect, the targeted Monster can declare an additional attack this Battle Phase!"

"A one-turn kill!?" Purple took two steps back in shock and fear.

"That's right! Do it, The Great Ogre! Ogre Axe!"

Following Go's words, his Link 3 swung his weapon at the Knight, prompting him to cry out in pain as he was knocked to the ground, his chest glitching.

Knight of Hanoi: 2500 - 3100 = 0

Winner: GO Onizuka!

The remaining cards on the field dissolved once the Duel ended, and Go could hear the crowd which stayed in the area cheer for him. He raised a fist into the air as a reply, grinning. The spotlight was back on him!

Back in China, Oranos was currently facing the Green Knight on top of the Great Wall.

"You people have some nerve to disrupt our Event." Oranos told with a glare. "I'll make sure to give you a beating you'll remember."

"Your tough talk doesn't scare me!" Green snorted. "Before Hanoi, all of you are destined to lose! I end my turn, so make it quick!"

Current Duel status:

TURN 2

Knight of Hanoi - LP: 4000

Hand: 1 card

Field: controls Cracking Dragon (ATK: 3400 / DEF: 0 / LV: 8) in the Middle Main Monster Zone equipped with Gravity Blaster

Oranos - LP: 4000

Hand: 6 cards

Field: nothing

Oranos swiped his hand, causing his six cards to appear. "Since my opponent is the only one to control a Monster, I can Normal Summon this card with no Tributes! Come, Hayate the Earth Star!"

A humanoid warrior clad in armor with beastly features and holding a staff appeared.

Hayate the Earth Star: Earth / Warrior / Effect / ATK: 2100 / DEF: 0 / LV: 5

"Cracking Dragon's effect activates!" Green abruptly declared. "When my opponent Normal or Special Summons a Monster, until the end of this turn, that Monster loses 200 Attack times it Level, and my opponent takes damage equal to the lowered amount! Crack Fall!"

Oranos and his Monster shielded themselves with their arms from Cracking Dragon's strong winds.

(Hayate the Earth Star: ATK 2100→1100)

Oranos: LP 4000 - 1000 = 3000

"Since your deck uses a lot of high-Leveled Monsters, it won't take long until your Life Points are all diminished!" Green grinned wide.

"Don't be so sure." Oranos said through grit teeth. Ouch, the damage from before hurt more than he expected... "Hayate's effect activates! When it's Normal Summoned, I can Special Summon one Level 5 Light Warrior from my hand. Come, Kaiki the Unity Star!"

Appearing on his field was a humanoid warrior clad in armor with demonic features.

Kaiki the Unity Star: Light / Warrior / Effect / ATK: 1000 / DEF: 2100 / LV: 5

"Cracking Dragon's effect!" Green sneered. "Crack Fall!"

The scene from before was repeated.

(Kaiki the Unity Star: ATK 1000→0)

Oranos: LP 3000 - 1000 = 2000

"I activate Kaiki's effect!" Oranos declared. "When this card's Special Summoned, I can pay 500 Life Points to Fusion Summon a Warrior Fusion Monster by using Monster I control or in my hand as materials! I fuse Hayate and Kaiki!"

Oranos: LP 2000 - 500 = 1500

As his two Monsters turned into particles of blue and red light that swirled together, he chanted.

"Eternal conqueror! Your might takes the form of a star which shines over all creations! Now, come to me! Fusion Summon! Level 10! Idaten the Conqueror Star!"

A twister of purple wind erupted from the whirlpool of particles and an imposing warrior holding a trident-like weapon emerged from it, standing in the Extra Monster Zone on Oranos's right.

Idaten the Conqueror Star: Light / Warrior / Fusion / Effect / ATK: 3000 / DEF: 2200 / LV: 10

"Have you lost your mind!?" Green demanded. "You summoned a Level 10 Monster with 3000 Attack! With Cracking Dragon's effect, it's over for you! Vanish, small fry! Crack Fall!"

"I activate the Quick-Play Spell Card, Spell of Pain!" Oranos declared. "With this card, you take the damage I would have taken from a card or effect!"

"What!?" Green cried out as his dragon's winds were redirected, washing over him and sending him stumbling to the ground.

(Idaten the Conqueror Star: ATK 3000→1000)

Knight of Hanoi: 4000 - 2000 = 2000

"M-My own effect was... used against me...?" Green muttered as he stood up.

"The Charisma title isn't just for show." Oranos remarked with a smirk. "You're going to learn that the hard way, it seems. I activate the Quick-Play Spell Mystical Space Typhoon, using its effect to target and destroy your Gravity Blaster!"

A cyclone enveloped the said card before destroying it.

"Even then, due to Gravity Blaster's effect, Cracking Dragon retains its extra 400 Attack." Green pointed out with a frown.

"Not that it matters." Oranos said. "When Idaten's Fusion Summoned, I can activate its effect to add a Level 5 Warrior Monster from my deck to my hand. I select Eisei the Orbiting Star, which I'll discard to activate Idaten's other effect, making it permanently gain 200 Attack!"

(Idaten the Conqueror Star: ATK 1000→1200)

"Now I banish Eisei from my Graveyard to activate its effect!" Oranos stated. "I target a Level 5 or higher Warrior Monster I control and have it gain 1000 Attack until the end of this turn! Of course, I target Idaten!"

His Ace Monster was surrounded by a fiery aura.

(Idaten the Conqueror Star: ATK 1200→2200)

"Battle!" he punched the air in front of him. "Idaten attacks Cracking Dragon! At this moment, I activate Idaten's effect since it's battling an opposing Monster with an equal or lower Level. That Monster's Attack becomes 0 during the damage calculation only!"

"N-No!" Green cried out in agony.

(Cracking Dragon: ATK 3400→0)

Idaten twirled its spear between its hand before throwing at Cracking Dragon, piercing its head and causing it to explode. Green was sent flying by the attack's backlash with a cry of pain.

Knight of Hanoi: 2000 - 2200 = 0

Winner: Oranos!

The remaining cards on the field dissolved, and cheers rang across the area for their savior. Oranos looked back at a screen in his area, seeing SOL's drones capturing the Knight Go defeated, and soon that happened to his Knight, too. The cameras now showed Zeroday...

Current Duel status:

TURN 1

Knight of Hanoi - LP: 4000

Hand: 1 card

Field: controls Cracking Dragon (ATK: 3000 / DEF: 0 / LV: 8) in the Middle Main Monster Zone

Zeroday - LP: 2400

Hand: 5 cards

Field: nothing

"I end my turn!" Yellow concluded. Thanks to DDoS Attack he used earlier, he was able to deplete his opponent's LP almost by half. With Cracking Dragon on his field, it won't longer until this Duel ends by effect damage. "Let's see if you can live up to your words, worm!"

"Ware no turn!" Zeroday announced. "Draw! I summon Bitron!"

The small, white being with a black visor and round, blue eyes appeared with an energetic 'Bitto!'.

Bitron: Earth / Cyberse / Normal / ATK: 200 / DEF: 2000 / LV: 2

"That card... is a Cyberse-type!" Blue Angel remarked from the side, her eyes wide.

Out of everyone watching this Duel and apart from her, only Revolver, Akira, Go, Oranos, Shoichi, and Jin knew of that Type. According to some urban myths, five years ago, the Cyberse race left the Cyberse World and came to LINK VRAINS, where they hid inside dangerous locations called Dungeons. Not even SOL can pinpoint their exact locations.

In order to get your hands on the Cyberse, it's said you'd have to complete their respective Dungeon... but even that isn't accurate info. No one has ever found a Dungeon and completed its puzzles so far. But if this person has a Cyberse... that must mean someone out there did.

"You use Cyberse? How unexpected." Yellow snorted. "But it's powerless before Cracking Dragon! My Monster's effect activates! When my opponent Normal or Special Summons a Monster, until the end of this turn, that Monster loses 200 Attack times it Level, and my opponent takes damage equal to that amount! Crack Fall!"

Zeroday flinched at the dragon's roar and it unleashed a wave of strong wind that pushed him and Bitron back a little.

(Bitron: ATK 200→0)

Zeroday: LP 2400 - 200 = 2200

"Impossible! You only took 200 damage!?" Yellow exclaimed. "But your Monster's Level is 2!"

"You're the one who doesn't understand Cracking Dragon's power." Zeroday smirked. "Its effect lowers my Life Points equal to the decreased Attack. Since my Bitron lost 200 Attack, I only took 200 damage."

Yellow gritted his teeth in anger, and Zeroday continued. "But since you didn't know this, that tells me two things. The first is that you're a bad Duelist, but, since you're with Hanoi, I don't think they'd hire amateurs like you. That means the second option is more plausible: you recently got that Monster, just like your two comrades."

Yellow gasped; Zeroday was right. Before leaving Hanoi's H.Q., he and the other two Knights each got a copy of Cracking Dragon to break SOL's firewall.

"I'd love to take that dragon with me, but I can't ignore the chance your cards might have a virus installed in them." Zeroday frowned. "Let's continue the Duel. I'm going to play my secret weapon, so pay attention! I activate the Equip Spell Junk Shield, equipping it to Bitron!"

"His secret weapon's an Equip Spell?" Blue Angel wondered as a shield with a face-shaped front materialized in front of Bitron. "Does he intend to finish it with a 0-Attack Monster?"

"Battle!" Zeroday declared. "Bitron, attack Cracking Dragon! At this moment, I activate the Quick-Play Spell Ego Boost, targeting Cracking Dragon to have it gain 1000 Attack until the end of this Battle Phase!"

(Cracking Dragon: ATK 3000→4000)

"You powered up my Monster?" Yellow asked. "Are you out of your mind!?"

"Well, not yet." Zeroday joked. "Junk Shield's effect activates! One time only, I can negate the destruction of the equipped Monster by battle and inflict to my opponent all battle damage I would've taken from that battle!"

Yellow's eyes widen behind his mask as the beam fired from Cracking Dragon's maw bounced off the large shield, hitting the ground right in front of him and sending him flying.

Knight of Hanoi: 4000 - 4000 = 0

Winner: Zeroday!

"Amazing, he defeated the opponent by using their own cards to his advantage." Blue Angel said in awe as the cards on the field dissolved. "Zeroday, wait!"

But the Cyberse user already pressed his Duel Disk's screen, vanishing in blue data. SOL drones appeared in the area at that moment, meaning he must have fled from those, and they captured the Knight before vanishing with him.

Everyone in LINK VRAINS started logging out then. Today signed the start of a new battle...


Fan-made Cards/Skills:

GO Onizuka:

Gouki Double Blow

Quick-Play Spell

Destroy 1 "Gouki" card you control and target 1 "Gouki" monster which declared an attack this turn: That target can declare an additional attack this Battle Phase. You can only activate 1 "Gouki Double Blow" per turn.

Oranos:

Eisei the Orbiting Star (Light/Warrior/Effect/ATK: 2000/DEF: 1100/LV: 5)

If only your opponent controls a monster, or if you control an EARTH monster, you can Normal Summon this card without Tributing. If this card is Normal or Special Summoned: You can Special Summon 1 Level 5 EARTH Warrior monster from your hand. You can only use this effect of "Eisei the Orbiting Star" once per turn. You can banish this card from your GY: Target 1 Level 5 or higher Warrior monster you control; it gains 1000 ATK until the end of this turn.


This was fun to write. Many scenes in here were similar to the anime, but I did change some parts of them, like Ai in his human form being attacked in the Cyberse World, the Dungeons, Zeroday instead of Playmaker, and so on.

First thing first, and this is important, Zeroday won't be "Playmaker but better". I just want to get that out of the way. Zeroday has a very special place in my heart because of a reason that will be explained down the line. Zeroday's VR appearance resembles Kiriga's White Battle Form from Saikyo Ginga Ultimate Zero Battle Spirits. I always loved that design and I inspired the avatar to it.

I added a third Charisma to the mix, but that marks the end of them. I always thought it was strange of the anime reveals the Charismas but never touches them again. Also, only two Charismas? Three or four would make sense, but only two?

All Extra Deck methods are already available in this AU, that's why Oranos used Fusion. I gave him Isao Kachidoki's deck (Iggy Arlo in the dub) because I believe it fits his character that's yet to be fully revealed and I like that deck. As for his VR appearance, think of a mix between Kachidoki and Alito's human form from Zexal.

VRAINS has two Sectors because I never understood why they showed those IRL places in VRAINS just to forget about them later in season 1. The Duels in this chapter were quite short because, apart from showing the strength of Charismas and Zeroday, they weren't the main focus of the chapter. Hanoi will get their time to shine later on.

Next chapter, we'll focus much more on our main OC, Yusuke. Stay tuned for that!

Reviews really make my day and it's a great way to communicate with you readers, and maybe find out errors I can avoid making. Please review, and with that said, I'll see you all next time!