Hello everyone! Welcome to my first fanfic. After reading a number of fanfics here across a variety of different shows, I decided to try my hand at writing something myself. With that in mind, my apologies in advance if this turns out to be a steaming hot pile of garbage. That said, I do want to point out a few things to keep in mind when you read this:

"Quotations" signal spoken bits of dialogue (or even monologue) and will often be separated from other paragraphs to help you understand who is talking and what's happening while they are talking.

Italics signal the inner thoughts of a character, unless they are within quotations, in which case italics within quotations denote that the character is emphasizing a particular word or phrase for dramatic or sarcastic effect. Just like dialogue, inner thoughts will be clumped together with the actions of the person doing the thinking. Italics can also denote names or titles of literature or other media, such as Sword Art Online (SAO).

[Bolded Brackets] denote system messages.

((Double Parentheses)) denotes either a skill or item, depending on the context. It can also denote the name of a guild.


I do not own Sword Art Online and do not claim ownership of its characters and stories. I have not read the light novels and have only watched the anime. I have limited knowledge of what happens during the light novels and will do my best to incorporate the few elements I do know of into my story but it is entirely possible that I may screw up certain details. I also want this to be an original story, not a slightly-modified SAO Progressive. If you guys wanted to read SAO Progressive word-for-word, you'd probably be reading that instead of this.

I have also made a couple of changes to some game mechanics based off of my own experience with MMORPGs and the like. Without going into too much detail, that includes things like new skills, new items, and new stats. Take that as you will.

I will also be introducing original characters of my own design. At least one will be a main/supporting character, but I have no intention of making them the sole focus of this story, nor do I want them to overshadow the canon characters. I may even bring in some ALO characters as well, but I haven't decided one way or the other yet.

So without further ado, I present to you the ramblings of a novice fanfic writer:

Sword Art Online - Unyielding .

"Hey! I'm off to practice now. See you later, ok?"

Were it not for the sensation of a fresh paper cut on his thumb breaking his concentration, Kirigaya Kazuto might not have heard his sister calling through the door. Between the magazine in his hands and the news feed blaring in his headphones, he'd effectively blocked out the outside world. By the time he'd recovered from the sensation of being yanked back to reality, Suguha was already down the stairs and well on her way to the door.

I probably should have at least said goodbye. I could pop my head out and say something, but the game's about to launch. Oh well. I'll see her later tonight after kendo practice. Kazuto thought.

It was one of many decisions Kazuto would come to regret.

Looking over at the NerveGear headset lying on his bed, Kazuto couldn't help but smile a little, at least on the inside. After a month of waiting, he was about to start a brand new adventure. Sure, he'd been one of the lucky 1,000 beta testers who got to experience Sword Art Online before the general public, but they had all been told that any levels or items they'd acquired during the beta would be wiped away. That was fine, though. They couldn't take away his knowledge and experience, and that was perhaps the best takeaway from the beta test. He was ready.

Kazuto carefully, almost reverently, slipped the NerveGear onto his head and laid down on his bed, making sure to relax his muscles and get into a comfortable position. After all, the last thing he wanted was to log off later and find that his muscles were stiff or cramped. As the clock display on the inside of his visor counted ever closer to launch time, Kazuto finally let that anticipation and joy seep out into a subtle grin.

"Link start!"

"Hey, you're good to go, right? Got your gear plugged in and everything?" Dan asked while reclined on his bed, phone nonchalantly squeezed between his ear and shoulder. His hands were otherwise preoccupied turning the page in the new fantasy novel he'd been reading.


Tight-lipped as ever, he mused. Well, that wasn't entirely accurate, actually. Tight-lipped would imply an air of resentment or hostility. Asada Shino was a girl of few words, but she never came off as standoffish. She and Dan had known each other ever since she transferred to their school, which was actually around the time Dan himself had started as a foreign exchange student. Maybe that's why they'd become quick friends, both being new outsiders with no social circles to call their own. Now, here they were about to jump into a virtual world, almost a year later.

"Alright, after you create your avatar, go towards the northern edge of the plaza and start walking into the market area. I'll be in the second shop on the right, scoping out some gear for us." Dan remembered, no he hoped that the shop was still where it was in the beta. Not being able to meet up with Shino as soon as possible would not have made for a good first day. The last thing he wanted was for his best friend to feel abandoned when she was brand new to MMOs.

"Got it. How will I know you're you?"

"I'll be the big one with the dark hair and blue eyes. My clothes should be blue as well." At least, he hoped his settings would transfer over.

"The big one? Are we compensating for something, Dan?" There was a hint of amusement in her voice. She wasn't one to crack jokes often, but when she did she knew just where to strike.

Dan sighed and closed his book. "Funny. Listen, if I'm going to be playing a front-line heavy hitter, I want to look the part, ok? No one's going to take a five foot, six inch maul wielder seriously." He shifted over and placed his book on the nightstand next to him before grabbing his NerveGear.

"Alright then. At least you'll stand out."

"We'd better log in now so we can get some levels in. The starting zone is probably going to be crowded. Big time. Gonna hang up now. Kinda hard to talk through a helmet. See you soon."

"See you." There was a beep as the call ended.

Dan slipped his NerveGear on before adjusting himself down his bed a notch, making sure his helmed head was resting comfortably on his pillow. He took a deep breath, trying to calm his nerves. He looked in the corner of his visor just in time to see the clock turn 1:00 PM, which signalled that the SAO servers had just launched.

"Link start!"