12th of January.
Snow. The storm has been going on for over 2 weeks by now and it showed no sign of stopping. Had it been worse her work would have suffered, but it gave her an excuse to relax for a few days.
Dozing off on the living room couch, the young woman stared at the ceiling. Her project was coming along nicely, and a certain Lord would surely be impressed. Now however she was thinking about whatever came to her mind. The past few months have been quite interesting. The Wizard Marshal kept getting on her nerves, but she found him quite a weird figure. There was also unrest in the Middle East, or so the newspapers were saying.
'Is that where you are... chasing that dream of yours?'
The one the woman was thinking about was a weird figure as well. They last saw each other years ago, before both left to follow their own paths. The boy she knew had a dream that anyone would call "impossible". He acknowledged that, but he still didn't want to abandon it.
'I hope you're doing well...'
It was late in the night, and she could barely keep her eyes open after an entire day of study, practice and work. She had plans to meet with her sister soon, and she was looking forward to it.
'If not for me then at least for her...'
In the end she fell asleep.
13th of January
Tohsaka Rin was not an early riser. Despite the appearances she always hated waking up in the morning, as a Mage's life wouldn't allow for much sleep at night.
After her usual morning routine she closed the door to the Tohsaka home and headed for the place where she agreed to meet her sister. Matou Sakura, unlike Tohsaka and him remained in Fuyuki City and lived a quiet life, often taking care of his house.
'You could at least come by and thank her once in a while.'
Despite Tohsaka's bitterness towards his situation, she didn't hate him. Quite the opposite. The man who left Fuyuki to pursue his dreams was unlike any other she had ever met. She had known him for longer than he knew her, and he had always grabbed her attention. However, ever since a certain ritual, he chose to follow an impossible ideal, and nothing she could say would stop him. After all, how could a mere Mage compare to her.
It was 11 AM when Tohsaka arrived at the house Sakura was taking care of. After ringing the bell for a few seconds, a few steps were heard from the inside. Suddenly the door opened. Staying in front of her was one of her high school teachers whom she hadn't seen for as long as the boy.
"Oh my! If it isn't Tohsaka-chan! Come on in, we were waiting for you!"
Fujimura Taiga was always a lively woman. One of her classmates in high school used to describe her as "a hamster on coffee" although most preferred to call her "tiger".
"Hello, Fujimura-Sensei. Sorry for being late."
"Don't worry. Sakura was worried she won't be ready before you came, so you did her a favor!" She said. "Oh, Sakura! Rin has arrived!"
"I'm coming!" A voice called from the living room. A second afterwards a purple haired beauty came out and greeted her as well.
"It's been a while, Nee-san!"
"Sorry for the delay, Sakura. Work in London is tough."
The plan for today was nothing more than having lunch together. It had become a tradition for them, after everything that happened.
Tohsaka took her usual spot at the table in the middle of the room, where Fujimura Taiga was changing channels randomly on TV. Sakura meanwhile was finishing her work in the kitchen.
"Have you heard, Tohsaka-san? Apparently the war in the middle east is now over."
"Eeh?" Rin wasn't especially interested, but it would be hard to find other topics for small-talk with Fujimura. She was however curious about the outcome.
'After all, less conflict would mean his work would get a bit easier...'
"Yes, it was on the news last night. The rebels were caught and the movement was crushed in a single day. They said they'll release more information today."
"That seems a bit too good to be true. Usually this kind of situations last at least a few years more."
"True. However they said the one at fault for the public attacks was captured."
"There's one person in particular to blame?"
"That's what they say. Apparently he was the one responsible for the bombing of that city last year. They finally released the official number of casualties last week as well, it was close to 30.000 people..."
Fujimura was visibly affected by the facts. She might not have had the same dream as the two who used to live here, but she was a human being, and such things would cause anyone suffering.
The conversation stopped after a while as they waited for Sakura to arrive with the dishes. Tohsaka thought she should go help her, but as soon as she raised herself up Sakura was bringing a plate to the table.
They spoke for a few moments, ate Sakura's cooking, reminisced about old memories and school events. It was however a hollow feeling, talking about the past without bringing up the one who wasn't here anymore.
"Umm... Nee-san, have you seen Senpai lately?" Sakura was the first one brave enough to bring up the topic.
"Nope. I haven't heard from him for years now."
Taiga was bothered by the conversation. "When he comes back, I'll make sure to re-educate him. Not calling or even letting us know if he's okay for so long... unbelievable. I didn't raise him this way!" She was both cheerful to talk about him but strict at the same time.
The day passed by quickly. Rin and Sakura went shopping for a few hours until returning to her house in the evening.
"Sorry for intruding." Sakura said as she stepped in.
"It's your house too, don't be so formal." Rin reminded her.
There wasn't much to talk about beside catching up. The time with her however was important to Rin, after being separated for so long she wanted to make up for the time she couldn't act as a proper older sister.
"Nee-san, can I turn on the TV?" Sakura asked at one point.
Despite owning a huge television, Rin didn't really bother watching anything. It was more for appearances than anything.
"Sure, go ahead. I'll go make some tea."
As she headed for the kitchen she heard the daily news talking about the civil war. It was a hot topic lately, so every news channel was talking about it for as long as possible squeezing every tiny detail they could for more information. It was no surprise that even Tohsaka Rin, who didn't concern herself with politics of the human world, heard about it.
"...government has decided to agree to negotiate with the rebels in exchange for the culprit..."
She returned with the tea cups on a platter as the reporters on-scene were describing the attacks from last year and the rebel movements. Apparently a rebel group, or rather "revolutionary" as they called themselves had attempted to overthrow the government. A huge explosion took place in a city which both the government and the rebels denied having any knowledge of.
"...however the People's Freedom Army rebel group has managed to apprehend the culprit. It is unknown what proof they have of this person's guilt, as an official statement hasn't been released yet. The government has however accepted their demands..."
"This world is awful, isn't it?" Tohsaka said to herself.
"I hope this is the end of it. People killing each others for political reasons is bad enough, but bringing innocent people into it is just... inhuman." Sakura was affected by the news. Seeing her sister saddened was never easy for Rin.
'Is this what you want to destroy?' She thought about the boy whose dream was to make everyone happy, wondering how he felt to hear about this conflict. She was certain that he was somewhere behind the curtains, helping refugees or saving wounded. It wouldn't surprise Rin if he was the one who caught the culprit somehow.
That thought brought a small smile to her face.
'Take care of yourself, hero."
"Sakura, why don't we watch a movie? I still have some of your favorites here since last time?
Sakura didn't take long to respong. "Y-yes. I think thi-"
Before she could finish her sentence her eyes widened in horror. Upon looking at the screen Rin felt a chill on her back.
The entire thing could be captured in a single moment.
"...a Japanese man who joined the rebel movement as a mercenary..."
The image of a white haired man.
"...bombs throughout the city..."
The name in the headline.
The look in his eyes.
"...hanging three days ago..."
She didn't know how long she and Sakura sat there watching the screen in disbelief. Nor did she remember which one of them cried first, or how long it took for her to understand. It was a nightmare. The footage of the execution was censored, and she couldn't explain the white hair and darkened skin, but it was without a doubt him.
She could barely remember the last thing she heard before she broke the TV screen.
"...Emiya Shirou has been publicly executed by hanging on the 10th of January..."