Prologue, Part I: Branching Path
The Underworld is a fascinating place. Referred to many times in the histories and lores of mankind, it has been called by many names. Hell, the Demon World, the Dark Realm. Yet, each of those names only captured a part of its essence. It was its own universe, though perhaps it would be more accurate to call it a multiverse, since it consisted of many worlds, several of which were parallel to each other, though lying within the same sphere of existence. For the man named Dante, they were a dime a dozen, and all the same. Tentacle-like roots that wanted to bleed you dry. Critters with fangs, critters with claws. Fire beasts, ice beasts, lightning beasts. He had seen them all, and he had beaten them all, given them a whipping that would make their ancestors cringe in the afterlife. And so, when he found himself in this place again, what he felt wasn't fear, or worry. As far as he was concerned, this was just another Tuesday.
With a slight difference.
As the devil hunter walked, clad as ever in his trademark red jacket, with a massive sword slung over one shoulder, he was not alone. Another walked next to him, keeping pace. And so, what should have been an uneventful journey, involving cutting and blasting everything in his way until the job was done and he found a portal home, had turned into quite the fun excursion.
"Oh come on, Vergil. Give us some details already!"
"There are no details to give. You almost destroyed my body, so I wandered around here until I recovered enough strength to come back to the human world. The rest you are already familiar with."
Dante hummed slightly. That was the most bare-bones possible explanation of what Vergil had been doing in the twenty odd years since they'd last met on Mallet Island, but it would do for the moment. He'd pester him to say more later. Right now, they had a task to attend to. Up ahead in the distance, seemingly stretching up into the sky itself, was a gigantic tree, far larger than any mountain. Its roots, which were visible, spanned several hundred miles around. Higher up, the trunk extended all the way across dimensions, into the human world. This was the Qliphoth, a miraculous demon tree that bloomed once every few thousand years.
"So we just have to cut this thing down?" Dante asked, hefting his sword.
"That's right," Vergil replied, the tiniest hint of a teasing drawl in his voice. "You know, I'm more than capable of handling this on my own."
"Of course you are," replied the devil hunter, rolling his eyes "But you could do with some help. So how about we take care of this together?"
Once upon a time, even the suggestion that the blue-clad half-demon needed assistance, optional or not, would have invoked his anger. But a lot had changed since then. For all their differences and constant bickering, the two brothers were glad to be reunited. And for the first time in his life, Vergil allowed that to show in the form of a tiny smile that graced his face for half a second.
"Have it your way then."
Dante grinned. Unlike his twin, he was fine with showing just a little more emotion. Together, the two Sons of Sparda approached the living tree. With its roots dug into the soil of the Underworld, the Qliphoth was absorbing large amounts of demonic energy. Those same roots had spread all the way to the Human World, where it had drained the population of an entire city dry of blood to nourish its power, raising it to cataclysmic levels, enough that its mere presence was tearing through the fabric of space-time that separated the two realms. To destroy something of that magnitude would require considerable power. There was no point in holding back.
Simultaneously, the two warriors transformed, red and blue auras exploding as they shifted into their true, demonic forms. Each of the brothers had achieved this power through his own means. Vergil through consumption of the Qliphoth's fruit, and Dante through absorption of the Rebellion and Sparda swords. Despite the differences, both Sin Devil Triggers pulsed and crackled with electricity, holding power on the level of gods. Their mere presence caused the dimension of the Underworld to tremble, and each of its denizens felt it, and experienced true terror once more. Long ago, there had been one who had brought them to their knees with brute force, Mundus. And then, there had been the Legendary Dark Knight who had proved even stronger. And now, not one but two devils had appeared who surpassed him. None dared stand before them: in the Demon World, might reigns supreme, and the Sons of Sparda had the absolute right of strength to approach the tree. In front of them, lesser and named demons alike parted, scrambling out of the way lest they incur their wrath.
With primal roars, the two godlike beings prepared their weapons, Vergil unsheathing Yamato from his forearm, while Dante raised high the blade that shared his name. Matching their timing as though it was entirely natural, they attacked in perfect sync. Vergil's two handed slash seemed to rend through the fabric of the Underworld itself, sending an expanding blue line that went clean through the gigantic trunk. At first, nothing happened. Then, the top half, separated from the roots that connected it to the ground, began to slide off. In desperation, the sentient tree attempted to save its own life, as countless tentacles grew from it, attempting to hold it together. That was when Dante's attack connected. A single swing sent forth a river of red blades made of energy, stretching across the miles that separated him from the tree. The countless summoned swords seemed to cover every inch of the Qliphoth's surface, stretching all the way up to where it crossed over into the Human World. And then, they detonated. With a blast that would put any human invention to shame, every last bit of the demon tree was obliterated, reduced to atoms.
With their task completed, the two Sons of Sparda morphed back into their human forms, dropping gracefully to the ground. Dante turned to face his brother, grinning.
"I'd say we're still even."
It would be a while before either of them took the lead in their seemingly never-ending competition.
Before Vergil could reply, however, the ground began to shake.
All around them, the very world seemed to fall to pieces, like so many shards of glass. With each piece that fell away, a swirling mass of everything and nothing was laid bare.
"What the hell's going on?!" said Dante, teeth bared.
"The tree! Destroying it released too much power! The wall between dimensions is being torn apart!"
Vergil, owing to his experience with the Yamato, could recognize the signs of what was happening.
"I thought you said cutting down the roots would close the opening!"
"It did! It's closing already! But before it does, the tree's released power is making one final, misguided attempt to keep it open! Do not be alarmed. It will close for good in mere moments," said the elder twin.
"Then we need to get back, right now!"
He turned to face his brother, seized for a second with the horrible suspicion that he'd repeat his choice from all those years ago at the Temen-ni-gru.
"Hey, you aren't planning on staying here, are you?" he asked, glaring at him.
Vergil laughed, an uncharacteristic gesture for him.
"I have had quite enough of the scenery here. I would like to return, if you don't mind.
"Now that's what I'm talking about," said Dante. "Come on!"
The two of them broke into full sprint, racing across the rapidly cracking ground at supersonic speed, towards the swirling hole in reality that existed where the tree had once been. Even as they approached, the portal grew smaller.
"Can't you just make another one of those with the Yamato?" asked Dante as they ran.
"Not likely! The dimension is too unstable already. If we rip it apart, we will be lost in limbo for eternity!"
Dante swore, and the two of them sped up.
Realizing they wouldn't make it, both brothers decided to pull out all the stops. They would need to recover some energy before they could transform again, but that wasn't the only way to move faster. It was now only ten metres to the portal.
Vergil's silhouette flashed blue, and he disappeared, using a Dark Slayer teleportation technique called a Trick.
Dante, on the other hand, jumped. Behind him, a floating red magic circle shimmered in the air, and as soon as he placed his feet on it, it hurled him forward. This was a Trickster style move called a Sky Star, which he had developed for high speed dashes.
This was it. They had done all they could. Now it was just a matter of seeing if it would be enough.
And, as a matter of fact, it was. Both brothers reached the gap in reality right in time.
However, fate had played a hand neither of them had seen coming.
The limbo space between worlds is common.
So, while it was possible to traverse it and cross over from the Demon World to the Human World, and vice versa, it was also entirely possible that one might end up somewhere else.
Indeed, humans exist in more than one universe.
And so, the single portal split into two, each leading to a different realm.
A moment later, Vergil found himself in the familiar destroyed streets of Redgrave City.
As for Dante… he opened his eyes, and saw a forest with leaves as red as his own jacket.
Prologue, Part II: Whole New WorldDante looked around, puzzled. He didn't recognize the forest he had arrived in at all. The portal had closed behind him right after he had come out of it. The space around him seemed completely normal. No rips and tears, no swirling masses of energy that might take him somewhere else. And of course, Dante did not have the Yamato. He started walking. As he did so, he looked curiously at the trees. The branches were a rather beautiful black, while the leaves were a bright shade of red. They weren't dry like leaves in Autumn though; this just seemed to be their natural colour. Dante had never seen trees like this. He had certainly never been in a forest like this. Nor could he remember reading about it. Where exactly had the portal dropped him?
Am I on another continent?
He felt a sense of trepidation at the money he'd have to spend on a plane home.
Trying not to think about it, he decided instead to see if he could find some civilization, or at least a way out of this forest. Judging by the light filtering through the canopy, it was still morning. Since he had no way of knowing which way to go, he decided to continue in the direction he was already going. He was struck by how silent the place was. Normally, woods were teeming with life. There were all kinds of tiny creatures, making their presence known through small sounds that humans could not detect, but which Dante very much could. Here on the other hand, all he had seen so far were a few frightened rabbits, which immediately ran off as soon as they spotted him.
The place seemed almost… unnaturally empty.
It was a familiar feeling. He'd encountered it often in the course of his work.
There were very few animals because something else lived in this forest.
He continued to walk, making good ground. It was after several minutes that he became aware of something tracking him. It was still at the far edge of the radius his senses covered, just over a mile away. He could hear its footsteps. It was quiet enough, and careful, avoiding breaking any twigs as it moved. Still, it was impossible to mask the soft vibrations of its padded feet hitting the ground with every step. Dante frowned. Something was wrong here.
It doesn't have a smell.
All living things had a natural odour that was unique to it, no matter how faint. Even demons that were basically spirits possessing inorganic objects, such as the Angelos, had a smell. Over the course of many battles, he'd discovered that this was because of small organic growths that took place inside the armours, probably as a result of the demonic presence in them. Beings that were in the form of reanimated corpses had especially pungent smells, for obvious reasons.
The fact that this creature, whatever it was, didn't have one, told Dante that it couldn't be made of organic matter.
Some kind of shadow?
Flipping Ebony out of its holster on his back, he pointed it behind him and fired, not bothering to turn around, targeting the creature with his hearing alone.
With unerring accuracy, the bullet hit its mark, blasting a massive chunk of flesh off it. Ebony was the gun meant for long distance shots. It had a slower rate of fire than Ivory, but made up for it with its power.
He nodded slightly to himself, satisfied. The bloodlust that thing had been giving off was starting to annoy him.
Now to take care of the others.
They'd been slowly circling around him, just outside the range of his senses.
That one was a bait, he realized.
Their plan had probably been to have it scout ahead, get close and act as a distraction while the others surrounded him and closed in. Unfortunately for them, he'd sensed them long before he was supposed to.
Also unfortunately for them, he was several billion steps above them on the evolutionary ladder.
They were sprinting towards him rapidly. With their plan having been foiled, they now seemed desperate to not let him escape. It would have been easy to pick them off with Ebony and Ivory, but he decided on a different tactic. Racing ahead, he found a clearing in the forest, and made his stand there. He wanted to get a look at what he was fighting.
Sure enough, they burst out of the trees, leaping right at him.
To him, they appeared to be moving in slow motion, as if swimming through molasses.
Dante took note of the dark fur growing all over them. Their bodies reminded him somewhat of wolves, though their proportions and movements suggested that they could switch between running on all fours and just their hind legs. The front paws in particular were well developed, with large claws. To top it all off, their snarling faces were covered by what appeared to be bone masks with red markings on them.
Whoa. Now that's a first.
Devil Sword Dante flashed into existence in his hand, and he slid forward with a wide step. To his perception, he seemed to be moving at normal speed while the beasts around him had barely shifted from their positions, as though stuck in mid-air. With a wide, single-handed swing, he sliced through two of the beasts. Immediately changing direction, he charged and lashed out with a savage kick that shattered its target's ribcage, sending the crumpled body flying backwards. Grabbing the sword with both hands, he disposed of two more with diagonal slashes. With only one remaining, he shot forward in a burst of speed that far surpassed even what he himself had displayed so far. The eyes on the demonic blade glowed red as a million stabs shredded his enemy into bits. With a final swing, Dante disposed of the blood on his sword, before allowing it to vanish in a burst of flames, to be called again when needed.
As his battle focus ended, the world around him appeared to speed up a little, and the dismembered, broken and diced up corpses of the monsters hit the ground. No sooner had they done so, than they began to fade, turning to ashes which were blown away by the wind.
"That's it? Isn't there supposed to be fire where there's smoke?"
Still, the acrid burning smell they left in their wake was similar to that of charred corpses. Yet, Dante hadn't used any kind of heat-based attacks on them. He decided to file away the info, along with the fact that whatever these creatures were, they disappeared once defeated. Along with the fact that they had no smell until they started to fade, their shadowy nature, and a gut feeling he had, Dante came to a tentative conclusion: these things weren't alive.
"Whatever. I suppose you all want to play as well, huh?"
The silver-haired devil stood at total ease, a jauntiness to his gesture. He was completely unbothered by the fact that there were rustling noises all around him, as well as the sound of heavy footsteps. Moments later, no sooner than two gigantic creatures emerged, knocking entire trees aside as they did. Right away, they were recognizable as scorpions. That is, if scorpions were the size of small houses. Their massive bodies were covered almost everywhere by thick, white, bone-like armour. Heavy tails curled ominously, while each of them clicked a pair of enormous pincers.
"I don't suppose I can convince you to just walk away, can I?"
All he got in response was loud, insectoid screeching, before the monsters attacked.
A pair of sharply spiked tails buried themselves into the ground where he had been standing, just a moment ago.
Dante, meanwhile, was twenty feet in the air, having seen the attack coming from miles away.
"Go to hell."
Responding to his will, a pair of gauntlets and greaves materialized on his hands and feet. A red magic circle appeared, and he pushed off it, so that he was now right above one of the scorpions. Pulling back his fist, he dropped, coming down with a ground pound. The creature's only bit of good fortune was that it died instantly. The blow smashed its armour as though it was made of thin glass, and the gauntleted hand continued on its path, utterly crushing the insectoid monster's torso against the ground. The punch had actually flattened it like a pancake.
Dante rose to his feet and turned around to face the remaining scorpion, who had witnessed all too well the fate that had befallen its brethren. As the devil hunter walked towards him, his silhouette seemed to burn with a red aura. The monster skittered backwards, pincers clicking as it tried to retreat. For the very first time in its existence, it was feeling the emotion it had inspired in all its victims. Pure, unadulterated fear. It had no idea what sort of being it had stumbled upon. The red clad one was not human. He was some kind of ancient horror beyond its understanding, and it wanted no part of him.
But it was too late.
Moving forward in a blur, Dante closed the distance between them, striking out with jabs. The perfect, graceful boxing form belied the terrifying strength and brutality behind the strikes, which dented the scorpion's armour and caved in its skull. As each blow landed, a deep voice, infernal in nature, roared in glee, counting.
"...five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten!"
As the tenth blow struck, the gauntlet came to life, blazing with white-hot fire. Not a single blade of grass or tree was harmed, a testament to the perfect control of the Devil Arm's wielder.
In a final show of stunning athleticism and devastating might, he struck the beast with a leaping, spinning uppercut. The initial impact drove his fist clean through its skull, while the subsequent whirling flames emitted by his weapon burned its entire body to ashes.
The devil hunter landed softly, allowing Balrog to dematerialize. The Devil Arm seemed disappointed that that was all the action it was getting for the moment.
"Somehow, I have a feeling you'll be getting plenty more."
So saying, he continued on his way.
Several miles away:
Ozpin stared at the Scroll he was holding. His expression remained for the most part stoic, but those who knew him would have noticed the subtle tightening of his jaws, the almost unnoticeable frown. He was concerned by what he had seen. A pack of Beowolves he could understand, though even then, it was rare to see them taken down with such ease. But two Deathstalkers? Normally, it took teams of four hunters to deal with one. There were a few elites who could take on such large Grimm alone, but it always took effort, and was never easy.
And yet, that man in red had utterly decimated them. Ozpin couldn't tell what was scarier: the fact that he had barely been able to follow his movements, or the fact that he was strong enough to straight up break Deathstalker armour with a single punch.
"Ozpin… what do we do?"
Next to him stood a tall, elegant woman with her light blonde hair neatly tied back. Her sharp expression was somehow intensified by the glasses she wore, overall giving her an air of strictness that had intimidated many a hunter-in-training. True to her standing as a veteran hunter herself, she remained calm and composed, even after what she had witnessed. However, it was not lost on Ozpin that she was nervously tapping her riding crop against her thigh.
The Headmaster of Beacon had seen a fair few strange and incredible things over the years. He wasn't easily shaken, but it seemed life still found ways to surprise him. He turned his attention back to the scroll, to the live feed from the forest. The man in red was still going in the same direction. If he continued, then before long, he'd be at the Ruins where the students were supposed to collect the Relics needed for them to pass the Initiation. At his current pace, if you considered the fact that he wouldn't be slowed down in the least by any Grimm he came across, he'd actually reach the place before any of the students.
That… would be a problem.
But far more importantly, he was not an ordinary warrior.
Ozpin had learned long ago that against enemies like those he fought against, powerful allies were invaluable.
And he would much rather have the mysterious hunter on his side than against him.
Yet, he had a feeling that sending down some guards to escort him to the school wouldn't be a great idea. Maybe it was the cocky walk. Or the casual attitude. But something told him he wasn't the type who'd take kindly to any sort of authority being imposed on him, or having someone sent to bring him back.
He and Qrow would get along well, methinks.
"We should go meet him," he said to Glynda. The chief instructor did not seem surprised by his decision. Over the years, she had gotten an idea of what to expect from Ozpin. That is, to be prepared for anything at all.
She simply nodded. A part of her was even eager to confront the man. He was obviously powerful, and could be dangerous. It was best to ascertain his intentions right away.
The two of them made their way down to the forest, using a much gentler method than being launched off the cliff by a spring-pad.
Meanwhile, Dante himself continued to make his way through the forest. To his disappointment, he didn't run into any other monsters after the two scorpions. Of course, the simple reason for this was that more than a few Grimm had taken note of what had happened to those who crossed his path, and had decided they'd much rather wait for hunters they had at least some chance of defeating. Lifeless or not, they had survival instincts.
"Okay, I'm starting to get real tired of this shit," said the devil hunter. It was true. He'd had a long, long day, and this portal separating him from his brother (again) meant he was close to the end of his patience. Why did things always end up like this? Just for once, couldn't he have a normal job? One that didn't involve things going sideways. How is it that Nero never seemed to deal with this stuff? Granted, his latest adventure back in Redgrave had involved his nephew, but still. It was an occasional thing for him, while Dante ran into some or the other complication on every job.
He grumbled to himself about having enough and settling down.
No more crazy save-the-world gigs. Just local jobs, and lots of pizza and beer.
That sounded awfully nice right about now.
So engrossed was he in his fantasies about the cool beverage, he almost didn't hear the footsteps coming towards him.
"About time I had some company," he said aloud. "So, are you the welcoming party?"
Ozpin and Glynda stopped, ten feet away.
"How did he…", the telekinetic witch muttered.
They had been walking as silently as they could. Even Grimm would have had a hard time hearing them coming. And they'd made sure to stay downwind of him.
Ozpin shook his head, gesturing at her to move forward.
The two of them stepped into the clearing, and approached Dante.
Up-close, they had to admit, the devil hunter was even more impressive. Though relaxed, he seemed like he could move immediately, to react to an attack or go on the offensive himself. He also had an impressive build, standing well over six feet while his jacket did little to hide that he had a powerful physique. They also noted that aside from two pistols strapped to his back, he did not appear to be armed. The massive sword and flaming gauntlets he had used earlier were nowhere to be seen. His silver hair was a little on the long side, and slightly unkempt. He was also sporting a bit of stubble. From that, and the state of his jacket, he seemed to have been on the road for quite a while. Yet another thing that marked him out as an expert hunter of all things monstrous.
As for the half-demon himself, he observed the new arrivals just as carefully. Both the man and the woman were tall, standing around his own height. They looked to be in good shape, and walked with good posture, their bearing and movements those of trained fighters. The man carried a simple walking stick, while the woman gripped a riding crop (which made Dante raise an eyebrow in amusement). From the way they held those tools, he immediately knew they were actually weapons. Well, at the very least, neither of them were civilians, meaning the beating around the bush would be kept to a minimum.
"Greetings," said the man in the black coat. "It is rather unusual to find a traveller in the Forest of Forever Fall. I am Ozpin."
"Glynda Goodwitch", the woman said tightly, keeping her eyes trained on the stranger, and not hiding her wariness of him.
Dante raised both eyebrows.
Ozpin? Glynda Goodwitch? They're really going to make these references right in front of me?
He almost felt like applauding the audacity of their humour. But by the looks on their faces, it didn't seem like either of them were joking. Unless they were absolutely incredible at keeping a poker face. Either way, he decided to play along for the moment.
"I'm Dante," he replied.
"Dante…" echoed the man who had introduced himself as Ozpin. The name was not familiar to him, and didn't follow the naming conventions common on Remnant.
"You're not from around here, are you, Dante?"
The question seemed innocent enough, but the devil hunter knew what was happening. And of course, two could play at this game.
"Where exactly is here?" he asked in return.
Ozpin and Glynda exchanged glances.
When the Headmaster answered, it was in a casual enough tone, though he was cautious.
"You are in the Kingdom of Vale. Specifically, in the Forest of Forever Fall."
To say that this information hit Dante like a ton of bricks would be an understatement.
Dante wasn't exactly big into global politics, but he hadn't heard of any place like that. There were a few countries he had heard were still (officially) under the rule of royal families, but these were few, and said royalty was little more than figureheads in most cases. The way this guy had just used the word, it sounded very much the opposite.
"Vale, huh?" he said. "You'll have to forgive me, but is this in Europe or something?"
If that were the case, he'd just need to get some money wired here and get a flight back to America.
Of course, his question brought a look of utter puzzlement onto Ozpin and Glynda's faces.
"Europe? I'm afraid I'm not aware of any such place, Dante. Is that where you're from?"
He knew very well that there was no territory called Europe on Remnant. In the wilds between the Four Kingdoms, it was entirely possible that it was a name used for some region, but this was unlikely.
No, putting together his confusion, lack of knowledge of Remnant's geography and politics, and unusual powers, Ozpin had come to an entirely different conclusion. But he didn't want to voice it aloud just yet.
Instead, he watched the dawning horror on Dante's face, who had likewise put together the presence of lifeless creatures he had never seen before, the strange forest he was in, the name "Vale", and the fact that he had just passed through an interdimensional portal earlier that day, to come to a conclusion of his own.
To his great credit, Dante retained his gift for world-class quips.
"Dorothy," he muttered, "I don't think we're in Kansas anymore."
"What?" asked Glynda Goodwitch blankly, having no idea what the strange hunter had just said.
"Never mind," he replied. There wasn't really any point in hiding it. It would only make these two more suspicious of him than they already were. On top of that, he had finally reached the point where he had run out of fucks to give.
"I'm from another world," he said bluntly.
To his surprise, Ozpin nodded.
"Just as I thought," he said. "I knew right away that you were unlike anyone I have seen on Remnant."
"Remnant?" Dante asked as he quirked an eyebrow.
Ozpin nodded, gesturing around them.
"Remnant. The world you now find yourself in.
Dante's shoulders slumped. He felt utterly defeated. So he hadn't been able to make it after all. No, it had just been that damned portal. The Qliphoth had found one last way to screw him over.
He was stuck here.
For all his power, Dante did not have the ability to open pathways through space-time at will. That was his brother's gift, one he could use through the Yamato.
He had one last hope. Somehow, he already knew it was pointless, but he decided to ask anyway.
"You wouldn't happen to have a way to open a portal out of Remnant, would you?"
The Headmaster shook his head. Even Glynda couldn't help but feel a little bad for the man in red. Somehow, seeing the confident and strong warrior looking so disheartened didn't feel right to her.
She turned to Ozpin, whose gaze had never left the man.
"I'm sorry," he said simply. "I can't imagine what you're going through right now, finding yourself in another world, one completely unfamiliar to you."
He paused, then continued, in a stronger voice.
"But it is not the end. One way or another, you have found yourself here, and Remnant has need of men like you."
Dante looked up, facing him.
"I never got the chance to properly introduce myself. I run a school called Beacon, and we train hunters."
"Good for you, I guess?" the Son of Sparda said. He had an idea where this was going, though.
Ozpin wasn't derailed by his quip, however.
"I have seen what you are capable of, Dante. I will not lie: we hunters are strong. For ages, we have been fighting the monsters you encountered, the creatures of Grimm. And we have become good at it. But it is not enough. Mankind is locked in a war for survival. The Grimm, drawn to negative emotions, exist only to prey on us, consume us."
Dante recalled that he hadn't been in a good mood after finding himself in the forest. Was that why they'd come after him?
Ozpin went on, making sure to look into Dante's eyes.
"Through hard effort, we have established the Four Kingdoms to live in safety. But it is not over. The Grimm still exist, waiting to break down our walls, and end us all. I have seen you fight, Dante. And though we may be from different worlds, I recognize one who fights the darkness when I see him. We have need of your strength, and you have need of a place to call home. Will you help us?"
For as long as he could remember, Dante had fought the monsters that preyed on the innocent, the creatures that crawled in the dark, the nameless terrors that lurked in the shadows. At first, it had been for revenge. Then, to protect humans. And finally, when it had started to become just a job, it became about family.
A family he was now away from, with no way to return to.
No. I refuse to accept that. I've broken out of hell before. This Remnant place should be a piece of cake in comparison.There were humans here. People. In need of help.
And as he had always done, he would stand between them and the darkness.
"I'll do it," he said. "I'll help."
Glynda was more than surprised at that statement.
Truthfully, she would normally have protested against Ozpin just asking a complete stranger to join them. But for some reason, she felt that this man named Dante wasn't evil.
"So," he said. "What's the gig? What do you need me to hunt down?"
He was coming, of course, from his experience as a legendary devil hunter who had slayed every manner of monstrosity imaginable.
Ozpin, of course, had bigger plans for him than just putting him on the frontlines (though he'd most definitely put him there too).
For the moment, however, he shook his head, feeling slightly amused at the puzzlement on Dante's face.
"Not hunting. I want you to come back to Beacon with us… where you will assume your place as a teacher."