Hiiiii~ Another chapter is here!

As mentioned, here is the second? third? chapter. It's chapter 20 as the previous ones with the Omake was chapter 19.5, don't really count that as its own chapter.

Also, thank you to my newest patrons: Hoang Nguyen Bui, FireRogueWolf25, lex00, Jeong Howon, Arian Calhoun, Benjamin Clifton, Norma Rubio, Modularprawn, somebody8008 and Elusive Bucket. Y'all rock!

Next update is Fate Coiling Sword followed by Snafu and An Archer's Promise.

That's all,

Author NimtheWriter out!

Beta read by Shigiya, Paragon of Awesomeness and Maglad.

Beta read by Shigiya, Paragon of Awesomeness and Maglad.




-Underworld, Gremory Estate-



The soiree, held in the opulent halls of the Gremory estate, unfolded before Sirzechs' eyes like a tapestry of intrigue and celebration. Despite his initial reservations about his sister's mysterious Servant, he found himself swept up in the festivities of her victory, even if Rias herself had chosen to not be part of it. Each guest, adorned in their finest attire, mingled and exchanged pleasantries under the soft glow of chandeliers. The scent of exotic perfumes wafted through the air, mingling with the soft strains of classical music played by a string quartet in the corner.

Sirzechs, resplendent in his tailored suit, stood beside his wife, their moods intertwined as they observed the scene unfolding before them. The beautiful silver-haired maid by his side radiated elegance, her keen eyes taking in every detail with a mixture of curiosity and grace.

As the evening progressed, conversation flowed freely among the guests, topics ranging from politics to the latest gossip from the underworld, and of course the Rating Game itself. He found himself engaged in lively discussions with fellow dignitaries, his doubts about Archer momentarily pushed aside by the jovial atmosphere.

At one point, the conversation turned to recent events in the Supernatural world. His wife, ever the astute observer, remarked on the curious case of their newest arrival.

"Valerie Tepes, you say? And she's the queen of the Tepes faction? That's odd," he mused, his voice barely above a whisper as he leaned in to speak to Grayfia. "I am certain that the one at the head of the Tepes faction of the vampires was a man, one King Tepes, with his fourth son Marius often acting as his faction's representative. He isn't dead, I presume?"

"We've heard no news of King Tepes, but Marius Tepes is still alive. The vampire prince was spotted a few days ago by some of our officials with matters concerning the Grigori. I believe Lady Serafall had a meeting with Marius very recently as well; she hadn't stopped talking about how the meeting made her want to visit the human world and go see her sister." A strange expression crossed her face. "But there has been a strange silence since the last time anyone affiliated with us had contact with the Tepes, so I can't say with certainty if he's indeed alive."

Sirzechs furrowed his brow, his mind turning over the implications of her words. Marius, a formidable figure in the Vampire hierarchy, had long been a sort of ally to their faction. Despite his relative youth and somewhat differing opinions to his predecessors, he had managed to rise in fame at an alarming rate — though his own identity as a son of the current — though perhaps now former — Tepes King had certainly helped. The idea that a young maiden like Valerie could have bested him and risen to the throne of what was well known to be a patriarchal system seemed improbable at best.

"It is indeed perplexing," he replied, his gaze lingering on the swirling patterns of the marble floor beneath his feet. "King Tepes has proven himself to be quite the formidable vampire having the capability to equal an ultimate class Devil, with each of his sons also being high class of the upper echelon. If she indeed was related to them and a secret daughter, then at best she'd be the sixth in line after his sons and brother I presume? No, the Tepes line has plenty of branch families, and with their political system, any man would automatically be higher up the ladder than even their king's own daughter. I find it hard to believe that a young maiden like her could have orchestrated their downfall. Yet the way she is behaving is most definitely not an act to deceive those around to help her gain support for a false claim."

Even if appearances turned out to be deceiving, he still trusted in his instincts and senses, which told him to not see Valerie as a genuine threat or a political mastermind.

…But there lingered a strange aura around the girl.

As the guests gathered and paid more attention to her, Sirzechs couldn't shake the feeling of unease that settled over him.

"It doesn't hurt us to be more cautious."

"Indeed," replied Lucifer, his gaze fixed on the newcomer who had boldly declared herself the leader of the Tepes faction. He and his wife stood at the balcony just outside, observing the unfolding scene below with a mixture of curiosity and skepticism. They were keen to see how the other guests would react to this unexpected proclamation, and perhaps glean some clues to verify the woman's bold assertion.

"Perhaps he and all the male heirs somehow met their ends yesterday or maybe even today?" He speculated, his red hair catching the light as he spoke. There was a distinct lack of concern in his voice, a testament to his opinion for the misogynist vampire faction. Not that the Carmilla were any better.

Despite them being on relatively friendly terms, neither Sirzechs nor his fellow Satans had ever seen eye to eye with them on some of their points of view on the world, and other matters. If this newcomer had indeed deposed her father and brothers, he was more than willing to acknowledge her leadership — so long as she could demonstrate the power to back up her claim.

A smile played across his lips as laughter echoed from the guests below. It was tinged with mockery and arrogance, directed at the woman who was now clenching the fabric of her dress. He leaned forward on the marble fence, his wife not mirroring his relaxed posture, standing straight instead as they settled in to watch the spectacle unfold. After all, there was nothing quite like a good show to ease the boredom in Sirzechs' opinion.

And he was pretty certain that the woman had to have some sort of plan.




"Is this some sort of farce?" spoke up one of the Devil noblemen, his voice ringing out amidst the murmurs of disbelief that rippled through the crowd. Just like many within the room, he regarded Valerie with a mixture of incredulity and disdain, his eyes scanning her diminutive form with skepticism. "Queen of the Tepes Faction? That's a statement I wouldn't even entertain in my wildest dreams. While I may not hold the highest regard for vampires, even I must admit it's rather disrespectful to besmirch their reputation for the sake of attention, little girl."

"I am not lying," she attempted to assert herself, though her voice faltered under the weight of the oppressive atmosphere bearing down upon her. She felt the intensity of the gazes fixed upon her, each one a silent challenge to her so-called audacious claim. "And… it is you who besmirches my family by denying my title as Queen!" she insisted, her resolve wavering but unbroken.

"If that is true, then I am actually a Seraph!" one of the younger generation Devil joked, earning a laugh from the surrounding people.

"And I am Zeus disguised as a Devil here to have some fun with the ladies!" More and more people joined, spouting whatever came to mind to mock Valerie.

"Enough of this charade!" Another figure stepped forward, drawing the attention of the crowd. A tall young man with tanned skin, blue hair and pointed ears — a trait that signified him as Zephyrdor Glasya-Labolas, prospective heir to the Glasya-Labolas clan. All eyes turned to him, awaiting his response over the matter with eagerness for the show to continue. Many observed Valerie with a mixture of curiosity and skepticism, finding it difficult to believe that such a seemingly fragile girl could ascend to such a position without facing fierce opposition from the vampire hierarchy.

"Little girl," Zephydor addressed Valerie with amusement, his tone laced with thinly veiled disdain. "You may be pretty, but I'm having trouble understanding what possessed you to spout such stupid lies at an important gathering like this. But let me make something clear — nobody here is buying your bullshit. I know you vampires love your court drama and all that, but if you're gonna try that stuff with us Devils, at least make it believable. In any case, you can drop the act now. If not, I suggest you leave before the guards decide to escort you out… Or perhaps I could escort you out?"

Goosebumps spread all over Valerie's skin as soon as she saw his lecherous grin, those eyes that didn't even bother to hide any of his desires blatantly shown before everyone in the room.

"Or you could keep playing hard to get, if that's your thing. I'm honestly starting to have doubts that you're even a real member of the Tepes. Probably some random vampire's daughter who got neglected by daddy dearest and came here looking for some sugar?"

A thin layer of demonic energy coating his figure as it was clear that the man was trying to intimidate Valerie while taking advantage of the situation for his own gains.

Sirzechs' smile widened though, having noticed a subtle change in Valerie's posture. As he continued to observe the unfolding situation, weighing the decision of whether or not to intervene before tensions escalated, he discerned a sea of uncertainty within her even as many seemed to mistake it for fear. Despite her outward demeanor of meekness and timidity, there was an absence of any fear in her countenance. The gathered Devils had perceived her as being frozen in terror, but to Sirzechs' keen gaze, it was clear that something else was at play, sparking his curiosity even further.

"Perhaps there is more to this girl than we expected," Grayfia remarked, her astute observation drawing a thoughtful nod from her husband. It seemed even she had noticed a strange aura surrounding Valerie. "Even Mother and Father have taken notice, as have the other Satans," she added, indicating that Valerie's presence had not gone unnoticed among the highest echelons of Devilkind.

From the back, their friend and fellow Satan, Falbium Asmodeus, nodded in agreement, his exhausted expression betraying a hint of intrigue. The one known for his constant action of sleeping had one of his eyes open as he woke up from his nap, observing the situation calmly and he even seemed… tense. Both of their eyes met, and silent messages were exchanged between them.

"I am not lying!" Finally, as if reaching her limit, Valerie's voice rang out loudly as she faced the opposing party. "I-I am indeed the head of the Te-Tepes faction, and I'll have you acknowledge as much after I've come here in person! King Tepes, my father, has abdicated his throne to me, my brothers have likewise forfeited their own claims to the throne, and even the Carmilla Faction has acknowledged me — so I expect the Devils to follow suit!"

Despite her attempt to exude authority and confidence, Valerie's words fell flat as she struggled to convey her message convincingly. Few took her seriously, and only chuckles greeted her proclamation. Yet she remained undeterred by the lack of support, and persisted. But her continued defiance only served to agitate some of the Devils, who began to grow impatient.

The young man who was in the running to be recognized as the next heir to the Glasya-Labolas clan — already at his wit's end — changed his demeanor for the worse as she continued to challenge him. With a silent resolve, he stepped forward, his posture poised and commanding, as he stretched out his hands with the intent behind his eyes having changed from desire to containing anger.

"Rather than have Lord Lucifer or anyone else here waste their time dealing with your nonsense and ruining our evening, I'll take it upon myself to remove you, little leech. With all your shameless lies, I think a night in the dungeon might do you good. And who knows, maybe the Tepes faction will be willing to offer me fair compensation after I help them capture a joker like you."

Without further ado, the man stepped up to Valerie, ready to just get done with this little comedic event. But Grayfia in the background could no longer stand by and watch such a course of action unfold. Even if the young girl was not the leader of the Tepes faction and merely sought to make a scene, it was unacceptable for people to harm someone during such an occasion — especially when it would only reflect poorly on Sirzechs' authority if such incidents occurred in his presence. Just as she was about to intervene, the red headed Satan reached out and placed his hand on her shoulders, halting the woman in her tracks.

"Lord Sirzechs?" she questioned, looking at him in askance.

At her inquiry, the man instead squinted his eyes while looking at Valerie with a visible frown on his face. An expression Grayfia easily recognized and understood what it meant. He was on guard.

And his caution was quickly shown to be justified, as in the following seconds Grayfia's eyes widened when a heavy presence appeared right behind the young girl — one that made even Serafall's demeanor change in an instant.

"To lay a hand on an innocent maiden without her consent while vilifying and demeaning her words without a shred of compassion on your part, how disappointing I find you Devils to be," the voice of another individual echoed through the chamber, filled with both authority and reproach. In an instant, Zephyrdor's body froze as a hand emerged from Valerie's shadow, grasping his wrist with a force that made him yelp in pain as his bones nearly snapped.


Gasps reverberated around the room as all eyes fixed upon the imposing figure that had materialized before them — a regal presence with golden hair cascading down his upper back, exuding an aura of unparalleled authority. Yellow eyes bearing down on the young man in contempt.

"Wha… Who the hell are you!? And get your hands off me!"

Unfazed by Zephyrdor's loud protests and attempts at intimidation, the mysterious figure remained stoic, his gaze unwavering. "A dog who only knows how to bark yet lacks any teeth with which to bite, brave enough only to strike at those he deems weaker than himself," he spoke, his words cutting through the tension like a blade. "Why should I remove my leash upon you when I know you not only seek to bring harm to my Master, but to every individual here? Perhaps I should do the guests here a service and lock this feral mutt inside a cage?"

"You fucker!" Enraged by the humiliating turn of events and the defiance of this stranger, the young Devil's face contorted with fury as he unleashed his Demonic Energy with a large magic circle forming within his palms, preparing to cast a spell. "I'll incinerate you just for saying those words, you fucking leech, and your little girlfriend over there too!"

But Vlad, unruffled by the threat, stood his ground with unwavering composure. "Fool," he uttered calmly, making no effort to stop Zephyrdor. When the Glasya-Labolas scion fired his magic everyone witnessed an astonishing sight — the spell broke apart as soon as it was launched. The magic shattered into harmless fragments that dissipated almost instantly, and Zephyrdor could only stare dumbly, trying to understand what had just happened."

"Wh-wha…" Zephyrdor gaped. "How did you…? Who the hell are you?!" He demanded, while others muttered to each other, all asking how this newcomer had seemingly negated the young Devil's magic without so much as moving a muscle.

Seeing that he now had everyone's attention, Lancer allowed himself a brief chuckle. "Of course, my apologies for the oversight. Allow me to introduce myself," he remarked, his hand resting lightly over his heart as he executed a graceful bow to the assembled guests. With a gentle release, he let go of Zephyrdor's hand, the young Devil stumbling back to nurse his bruised wrist, quickly forgotten amidst the attention directed at the Heroic Spirit.

"I am Vlad Tepes III, though many also know me as Lancer. I am a Heroic Spirit, summoned into the service of this young lady to act as her loyal advisor. I therefore ask once more that you acknowledge Lady Valerie, Master of the Servant Lancer and the Queen of the Tepes Faction. Let us not allow this minor obstacle to hinder our potential for cooperation. Indeed, King Tepes has graciously relinquished his throne to one more capable and compassionate. Any disrespect directed towards her will be seen as enmity towards the entirety of the esteemed Tepes bloodline."

Despite Vlad's cordial tone and genial smile, a sense of unease spread through the room, with some guests visibly trembling while others exchanged confused glances. Yet, another young man stepped forward, holding a champagne bottle, and spoke with a mix of curiosity and greed.

"Do you take us for fools? To call yourself Dracula when he has been dead for centuries, just what game are you playing here? Or if that is truly your name, it gave you the confidence to address us in such a manner? How embarrassing it must be for the vampires. Though your strength seems to be adequate, you need to work on your own introduction instead of using a fake identity. This young lady is certainly fortunate to have acquired a fitting companion to bolster her 'leadership' of the Tepes faction. To confront us Devils with such bravado, I must admit, is either incredibly bold or remarkably foolish. Perhaps a bit of both," he remarked, his arms raised as if extending an invitation. A smirk played across his features as he continued.

Vlad paid attention to the blonde haired man, taking his measure.

"I suppose I should introduce myself, though it pains me to do so with someone of such lowly stature as yours. Nonetheless, your swiftness in seizing power has impressed me. I am Bedeze Abbadon, ranked third in the Rating Games, and I find myself quite intrigued by you, vampire."

From his pockets, Bedeze retrieved a crimson Knight piece, displaying it before the stoic Heroic Spirit.

"Initially, I intended to extend this offer to Lord Lucifer's sister's mage. However, there is nothing to prevent me from extending the offer to both of you. Vampire, you were tricked with an unfortunate fate. Bound to a weakling like her, both in power and demeanor, and she will only hinder your growth and potential. That is why I ask you to join me instead. By accepting this Knight Piece in my hand, your powers will soar, and you will become one of the strongest Knights in the world, recognized by all of the underworld. Leave her side and join me. Consider it compensation for disrupting Lord Gremory's party and humiliating the Glasya-Labolas' disappointment of an heir-to-be over there. Though, that last bit may not be the case after such a shameful display. Under normal circumstances, severe punishment would be in order, and the consequences for that girl behind you would be far worse. But with Lord Lucifer's permission, I'm certain you wouldn't deny joining a cause that clearly benefits you more than staying beside a mere brat."

Gradually, the uncertainty and confusion that had plagued many of the guests began to dissipate. Sipping on their champagne, they discussed as if it were a foregone conclusion that Vlad would accept Bedeze's offer.

In contrast, Valerie grew visibly nervous, her hands and shoulders trembling as she cast uncertain glances at the man beside her. Her Servant, however, remained calm, glancing back at Valerie to offer her a reassuring sigh and a gentle pat on her shoulder.

"Is your impression of me so tarnished that you doubt my promise to you, young lady?" Vlad inquired with a hint of amusement, observing the growing panic on Valerie's face. He halted her attempts to explain herself, signaling that now was not the time. Turning his attention back to Bedeze and the other Devils in the room, Vlad's gaze lingered momentarily on Sirzechs before returning his attention to the brazen man who made the request for him to shift his allegiances.

Growing impatient, Bedese urged Vlad to accept the Evil Piece, "I do not have all day. Many humans and entities from different supernatural factions have begged to join my peerage or form a contract with me. The same goes for vampires like you. The fact that you're not only hesitating but refusing my offer outright is insulting. I advise you not to make a foolish mistake you'll end up regretting."

Vlad scoffed, "Despite being told by my Master about how different, peaceful, and understanding the Devils are here compared to my old world, I still find myself disappointed at your apparent inability to show respect."

"What did you say?" retorted the man standing before him, his tone laced with warning. His demonic energy surged, surpassing anything Bedese had shown and intimidating some of the devils around him. "I remind you to remember your place, vampire. Do not speak back to me, or else I'll make sure the little girl loses her tongu—urgh!"

In a swift turn of events, the Devil was cut off before he could finish his sentence. Vlad's figure blurred as he moved, wrapping a hand around Bedese's neck with a strong grip, lifting him slightly off the floor and depriving him of air.

"King or not, it is only natural to show respect to those deserving of it, even one's enemies," Vlad proclaimed sternly before dropping Bedeze. "You however have obviously failed to do so and have not learned the lesson I imparted to that foolish boy over there."

Despite their aggressive exchange, no one attempted to interfere, and Sirzechs seemed unperturbed by Vlad's handling of the situation. A small smile even graced the redhead's face as he continued to watch the spectacle unfold below.

This… he was starting to like these Servants after all.

"You are playing with fire, vampire." Bedese warned the man as he nursed his throat, his arrogance making way for hostility. "I was already showing respect by offering to make you my Knight, but evidently your kind are quite lacking in wisdom."

A loud clang erupted in the middle of the room, where within Vlad's palm appeared a beautiful black and silver spear with a design that differed from anything the Devils had seen in their lives. It could hardly even be called a spear, resembling a two sided blade more than anything else, holding no uniformity of any kind, it still carried enough bloodlust to put Bedese and many others on guard.

"Oh my, it seems there is a grave misunderstanding here. I am no vampire, and calling me such is not only nonsensical on your part, but something I take as an insult. The King who stands before you is a human that has ascended into a Heroic Spirit." There was an edge to his voice as he mentioned vampire, this false stigma seemingly forever bound to his name even in another world. "Perhaps giving you a glimpse of a Servant's might will prove more convincing."

His figure blurred, a glint flashing by Bedese's eyes as in the next second, a thin line formed on his cheeks, a trail of blood running down his chin. Bedese was shocked at the speed, having barely been able to perceive the man in question and having instinctively moved his face just in time to dodge the spear swipe, though evidently he hadn't been fast enough.

"You hold so much arrogance yet you failed to avoid even that. What gives you the right to speak to this King in such an arrogant tone? I am Vlad Tepes III, not the vampire Dracula or whatever abomination you have in mind. Have I made my point, or must you be made a further example of, Devil?"

Getting over his shock, rage soon filled Bedese's face as in the following moments multiple portals surrounded him and Vlad. "Don't you get cocky with me you—!?" Just as the atmosphere between them threatened to erupt into a full blown battle, Sirzechs made his move.


"Uh?" A giant red wave of pure red destruction momentarily enveloped the blonde Devil's portals, while Vlad had already disappeared from his spot and was on the other end of the room with Valerie held in his arm while every single portal was overwhelmed in an instant by Sirzechs' mastery over the Power of Destruction. "What!"

Realizing that such power could have only come from one person, Bedese turned his attention to the back and found Sirzechs Lucifer standing there, accompanied by Grayfia with his usual smile on his face. Having effortlessly destroyed his spells yet not even showing the slightest sign of exertion wounded his pride. "Lord Lucifer! Why are you interfering?! This man and that girl behind him have insulted our kind, and you're defending them!? That is not an action befitting a Satan!" He shouted with anger, hoping that the crowd would agree with him.

Unfortunately for him, no one even bothered to spare him so much as a nod of agreement while some who were watching even looked at him with eyes filled with contempt. Before he knew it, Sirzechs already stood in front of him. A bead of sweat flowing down his forehead at the subtle pressure coming from this freak of nature, a sensation only given by a being attaining the power of a Super Devil.

"Enough, you and Zephyrdor have caused enough trouble and given our guests a horrid reception, which has also reflected poorly on House Gremory's hospitality, let alone your own houses. I'd thought to let you sort it out amongst yourselves, but this is too much." What followed after was a sinister whisper. "I advise you to not make a fool of yourself here, Bedese. There are many eyes watching not only me, but you as well."


Seeing the man calm down, he then turned his attention to Valerie and Vlad. "Greetings, Queen Valerie Tepes and Vlad Tepes. My name is Sirzechs Lucifer and as you may have guessed, I'm one of the four Satans. I speak on behalf of the Devils when I say we are more than happy to have you join us in this little party of my sister's first Rating Game triumph." He walked over to the duo, extending his hands towards the girl first, an action that flustered the latter and made her Servant nod in satisfaction.

"U–Um… t-thank you!" Valerie shook his hand and bowed at the same time, letting out a sigh of relief within her as there at least existed someone who was willing to listen to her.

"Please, come with me, we have much to discuss." The redhead Satan invited both of them to a more private setting.





"That jerk Archer! Here I thought he was really cool, but in reality he's a big meanie! If his arrow had destroyed the keychain gift So-tan gave me then I would have turned both of those Servants into ice popsicles!"

Within a dark alleyway, huddled inside a small izakaya, three of the four Satans had gathered to share some moments of rest and free time from their duties. Serafall, Sirzechs and Falbium were sharing drinks and snacks without a care in the world of their image.

"I doubt doing that would be as easy as you seem to think, or that they couldn't escape from something like that if you did manage to imprison them in ice. They are spirits, after all." Sirzechs answered, munching on a piece of fried squid. "You saw how fast Lancer was when he cut Debeze, and Rider seems to be even faster. As for Archer… well I'm certain he has his own tricks."

A good while had passed since the summoning of the new Servant and subsequent fight that threatened to annihilate Kuoh Academy, and Sirzechs still clearly remembered the small reminder from Archer that had destroyed Serafall's phone and threatened to take one of his ears. To think, not only was the man able to keep up with an entity physically superior to himself, but also keep watch on them at the same time… quite impressive.

"Speaking of Lancer, did you get any information from him about this whole summoning stuff?" Serafall asked, chugging down her third bottle of sake, not a single sign of flush present on her cheeks while Sirzechs knew he had some and had yet to finish a single bottle. Falbium on the other hand had fallen unconscious after just a couple sips.

Sirzechs shook his head. "Unfortunately no, he is also not aware of how this ritual managed to reach this world, nor could he say for certain if there are more Servants roaming out there. Hm, to think I'd ever hold a conversation with Dracula of all people, who would have thought…"

"Careful, he didn't seem to like it when anyone called him that."

The redhead chuckled at the reminder. Indeed, the Servant seemed to hold a rather large amount of hate for that particular name. "Nonsense he called it, that the story associated with that name had nothing to do with him."

"He wasn't able to recognize Archer as well?"

"Nope, again, no matter how many times I showed him the footage of the Rating Game he just grew more confused than anything else, though he certainly seemed interested knowing that another Servant had been summoned." Not that it mattered, Sirzechs had honestly lost any semblance of doubt towards that man's ability to keep his sister safe to a certain degree, at least until his contract came to an end.

"I can try and talk to him and get some information out of him." The petite Satan suggested, getting an interested look from Sirzechs who was holding back a smirk. Dealing with Serafall was one thing, but when she seemed this motivated it seemed like a recipe for disaster. "He will most definitely be unable to resist the charms of Magical Girl Levia-tan! And he totally owes me a new phone too!"

Sirzechs meanwhile just tuned her out and continued to sip his last cup of sake for the evening, preparing to return to his office and resume his duties that Grayfia had must definitely been noting down. Truthfully, he wasn't able to relax much these last few days. The sight of Ajuka getting more and more desperate while searching for his missing younger brother while he was helpless to find any clues to his location had taken a toll on him. But that did not mean he had not been able to uncover anything. 'Even with how destroyed Diodora's private manor was, Grayfia still managed to find traces of a large and intricate magic circle etched onto the walls and floor… I really hope it's not what I'm thinking.'

There was a chance that it was the Old Satan Faction that had a hand in his disappearance, but minor details now started to indicate that Diodora had tried to perform a certain summoning ritual, only it didn't go nearly as smoothly as it had for Rias and Sona. He did not ask Vlad for any help on this matter, believing it to be an internal matter, and was better to discuss it with Rider and Archer instead.

At the end of the day, Vlad's Master belonged to the Tepes Faction of vampires, not the Devils.

"Hey you fucking wrinkled old shit, pass me two bottles of beer!"

A rather rude voice interrupted his thoughts, and Sirzechs glanced sideways to see the curious sight of a short young man wearing the clothes of a priest, with white hair holding a rather interesting weapon on his back… one that held notable holy properties.

"Argh, shitty fucking boss can't even give me a break to go hunt some of the heretics in this town of heathens cause he thinks it's 'too risky!' Fuck! I don't even get to have fun these days!"

Sirzechs raised an eyebrow at the language used by the young man while Serafall watched him with a grin on her face.

For she remembered seeing his face in one of her reports from not too long ago, a rogue priest who went missing during the attack on the rogue Fallen Angels who had wanted to steal the Sacred Gear from Rias' new Bishop.

"The fuck you losers looking at!?"

Sensing her staring at him, Freed turned his attention towards them. Though he immediately froze as he carefully observed their faces, his face turned pale as the grin on Serafall's face grew larger.

"Holy shit! What the fuck are the shitstain Satans doing here!? You gotta be fucking kidding me!"

Fumbling to his feet, he didn't bother paying any attention to the store owner who had brought him his order and instead threw the drinks straight at the group as a distraction before quickly dashing out of the store with a full panicked sprint. Falbium just rolled his eyes, having been briefly awoken by all the shouting, and used a little of his power to block the attack and went back to his sleep, "Noisy prick… these exorcists haven't changed a bit since the war."

Sirzechs nodded, stealing one of Serafall's takoyaki, much to the woman's dismay, before shrugging. "It is the first time I have encountered one with such a foul mouth. Correct me if I'm wrong… but was that an actual holy sword that he had on him?"

"Damn it, that priest cosplayer didn't pay and just wasted those beers!" The owner behind the counter shouted with anger, heating up at having his beer wasted and even destroyed by a drunk fool! Now he had to go and clean that mess up.

"Don't worry boss, I'll make sure he pays you back!" Serafall said, hopping down her seat and rushed straight for where Freed ran off too.

"Should we… do something about this?" Falbium asked tiredly, wondering if he should bother to put any effort into stopping their long time friend or just let it play out, to which Sirzechs chuckled.

"She'll be fine, this is far from the first time she fought against a Holy Sword user."

"I was more worried about the exorcist and the town getting turned into ashes by a drunk Satan dressed as a Magical Girl… " His deadpan tone made it clear to his friend who the real danger was in this situation.

"Oh would you look at that, Grayfia must have found out I've escaped and is calling me."

"Your phone is silent."

"Husbandly intuition. I must make haste and return to the Underworld to resume my duties. Take care of the bill for me, and make sure to bring something for Ajuka, he needs to ease up a bit as well~!" Without giving him any time to reply, Sirzechs disappeared with a teleportation spell. The owner who came back from cleaning up the mess found Falbium sitting all by himself and huffed.

"Don't think you can run away like your friends without paying, young man!"


He'd have his revenge on those two one day.


-Kuoh Academy, Student Council Office-

She was in trouble, and even that was a major understatement of the entire situation. Sona was resting face-down on a couch within the student council room without any of her loyal peerage members present — all of them having left to pick up some items she'd requested, but mostly to give her some space. She couldn't help but sigh morosely, finally regaining sensation in her rear after the mind-numbing experience of being spanked a hundred times with Akeno's lightning. Now she was forced to spend a good chunk of her day stomach-down on the couch inside the council chamber — a piece of furniture that normally would have never been placed there under her watch, but today was an exception.

"That damn Rias and her perverted Queen. I swear, that sadist was enjoying it far more than she should," she groaned, her butt stinging and completely red from her punishment. "I should have asked Tsubaki to bring me some ointment instead to help it recover faster." Despite her origin and biology as a Devil, with enhanced recovery and healing magic, Sona wanted to utilize every possible resource to rid herself of the stinging pain as soon as possible. Being unable to sit down without excessively squirming around on her chair as the student council president was an insult, a humiliation she was not willing to endure in addition to everything else that was already happening due to her actions.

"I still have to find a way to apologize to Archer," she muttered to herself. Although she was relieved that Rias and the others were mostly willing to accept her apology, Archer was a different case. Despite never showing any real anger towards her actions, he did wear a face filled with disappointment when looking at her. It hurt, more than she had imagined. Archer was a person she wanted to get closer to and learn under his care, to uncover the vast knowledge and experience he held and earn his respect.

"I have returned, Master," right next to the sofa, the air shifted as Rider's figure materialized. Sona flinched at her sudden appearance. Unlike Rias, she still wasn't used to Servants being able to switch between physical and spiritual forms at any moment.

"Ah, good to see you, Ri… Rider?" The Sitri heiress hesitated, unsure if she was even using the right term in the first place. "You are a Rider, correct?" she asked the woman, remembering Archer addressing her as such. But with everything that had happened so far in the last day, it made it hard to trust her current judgment without some doubts.

Her Servant, on the other hand, gently nodded, her blindfold making it difficult to decipher her current emotions. "Yes, you can call me Rider," she replied. It did not escape Sona's attention that before her stood a Heroic Spirit — an individual whose actions in the ancient past had been so grandiose and revered by humankind that it somehow allowed her soul to be forever recorded within the Throne of Heroes. A real mythical figure, when she thought about it, one that managed to give Archer of all people a hard time, who himself had previously fought Grayfia Lucifuge, the Silver Queen of Annihilation.

The fact that the woman she'd summoned held the power to possibly kill a person she considered to wield power that may just be on the level of a Satan made Sona turn a little pale each time she saw Rider. Whoever created this ritual in the first place had to have been either a madman or an individual powerful or resourceful enough that even when facing down such beings, they weren't afraid. Or perhaps they merely had been that confident in the Command Seals.

Even though Sona had encountered numerous important mythological figures who still lived to this day, including several gods and former humans who had joined the peerages of other Devils, it still felt odd to be standing before Rider. Her new Servant was not an individual from this world, and thus Sona could not fully rely on the information she had available to determine her identity.

"It occurs to me, our first meeting didn't exactly allow me to offer you a proper welcome, to say the least, and I'm sure you may be a bit confused or lost about everything that has happened so far. I know I would be," Sona admitted.

"It is fine, Master," Rider answered. "While you were finishing your business with those other two, Archer brought me up to date in regards to my general circumstances, and advised me to bring any further questions I had to your attention."

As the Servant asked her questions which the Master answered as best she could, Sona still had trouble believing it hadn't even been a full day since she summoned Rider. Yet despite the initial deadly chaos, both of the Servants now seemed to treat it as if it was just a minor incident that they had already put behind them. Archer did not seem to hold any personal grudges against Rider, and the same applied to Sona's Servant — or so she liked to believe.

Taking a deep sigh, she slowly got up from the sofa before facing the lilac-haired Servant before her. Now that they were alone and she got a much closer look at the woman, it made her more and more certain that whoever Rider was, she could not be from Greece. 'Clothes aside, I don't remember any particular stories about anyone from Greek mythology wielding such a weapon,' she mused within her mind, wanting to add that her clothes looked rather modern, but pushed the thought aside as there was a possibility that such clothing had existed before in the other world.

"Listen, I understand that your first impression of me is probably not the best… After all, not only am I in this shameful situation, I went and already used up one of my three Command Seals within moments of your summoning, so I understand if you are looking down upon me in some capacity." Sona more mumbled than said, rather uncharacteristically for the fastidiously efficient Student Council President of Kuoh Academy.

Rider on the other hand, merely tilted her head as her only response, and remained silent, leading Sona to believe that the woman was waiting for her to continue. "I didn't summon a Servant for anything as grandiose as fighting for a wish-granting device, but because I simply didn't want to fall behind my friend and be forgotten while she had a Servant of her own. I… don't want to lose my position as her rival, which made me act irrationally and out of character. It is not fair to you to be stuck with someone like me, so if you're unhappy and want to leave, then I won't object to it and am willing to follow through with any procedure that a Master would need to in order to dispel and send back their Servant to the Throne of Heroes."

As she closed her eyes, Sona fully expected Rider to confirm that she did indeed wish to leave, which caused her to stiffen when instead, her Servant surprised her by replying with three simple words. "I don't mind,"

The black-haired Devil's head jolted upwards just in time for Sona to watch in disbelief as Rider shrugged. "I am not mad or disappointed in you regarding my current circumstances, and I don't have any particular wish to be sent back. You have already summoned me as your Servant. According to Archer, a great number of the ancient powers still persist to this day within this world. So even if the Holy Grail as I know it does not exist here, there may yet be other means of fulfilling my wish. For that reason, I desire to remain as your Servant, Master."

Never in her life did Sona believe that someone of such immense power would be so unbothered yet understanding at the same time by circumstances the likes of these. Her impression of Rider grew by the second as she struggled to hold back a smile, something that the Servant noticed, but did not comment on.

Shaking her head, Sona slapped her face a couple of times to once again get back in order and recompose herself. "Ri-Right! There are many things we still don't know about this situation, and there is indeed a possibility that your desire can still come true in this world! As compensation for you helping me and being willing to stay here, I promise I'll try my best to fulfill my obligations as your Master in order to grant your wish, whatever it might be."

The Sitri heiress paused for breath, then continued. "I don't know if Archer told you this already, but the clan I am heiress to is considered amongst the most influential and powerful in Devil society. There is very little I can't give you, and I assure you, whatever your wish might be, it will eventually become reality!"

Whether it be wealth, fame, or status, Sona was confident she could provide all of those to Rider if she merely asked for it. Even if it entailed asking for yet more favors from her sister — which she really didn't want to do and was an action she considered to be a last resort, yet it definitively remained a possibility she wasn't willing to discard if it was for her Servant's sake. It would be but a small sacrifice on her end to thank this woman for everything she was already willing to put up with.

"…" No answer came from the other side, as Rider was seemingly neither impressed nor taken aback by Sona's words.

"Oh, sorry… I got a bit too excited there and couldn't stop myself from talking. Before even making such an offer, I believe it would be more reasonable to introduce ourselves to one another, given we will be working closely together from now on. Putting aside that you most likely already heard a bit about me from Archer, I will reintroduce myself again. My name is Sona Sitri, heiress to the House of Sitri, and third-year student of Kuoh Academy as well as Student Council President. As you know, I am a high-class Devil, my powers specialize in water control, and I am skilled in strategic planning. I am also a Devil with a nearly complete peerage—"

"Kaichou! We're back with the ice! Tsubaki-san also had us stop by the pharmacy to buy some ointment for your butt—gurgh!" The door swung open as Saji walked in, holding a small plastic bag. His sentence came to an abrupt halt as a fist connected with his face from the side, sending him crashing to the floor with a cry of pain. Tsubasa followed him into the classroom, wearing a visibly irritated expression.

"Don't go shouting that shit so loudly, you idiot! Even if there's no one else at school currently, it doesn't mean you can disrespect a woman like that!" Tsubasa scolded the Pawn, her voice laced with frustration. The other members unanimously agreed with the tomboy's words.

Saji winced, rubbing his sore cheek. "But I didn't say anything disrespectful! I was just telling Kaichou that we got her… her… ah…" His voice trailed off as his gaze landed on the beauty standing next to Sona. With the chaos of the previous day still fresh in his mind, Saji hadn't had a chance to properly observe Rider until now. And as he took in her appearance, he felt his cheeks flush with warmth.

"Wow…" muttered the second-year boy, his words barely audible. It wasn't that he hadn't seen beautiful women before — his own King and fellow peerage members were prime examples of feminine beauty in their own right — but there was something about Rider that made her stand out even amongst the many beautiful girls he knew and often fantasized about. It was more than just her looks; it was an aura of charm that seemed to envelop her, captivating him with every passing moment. He was snapped out of his trance by the sound of Sona clearing her throat.

"S-Sorry, Kaichou! I wasn't trying to stare or anything like that, I swear!" he stammered, his embarrassment evident for all to see. Reya, Momo, and Tomoe huffed in amusement, while Tsubaki rolled her eyes.

With the tension broken, Sona felt a sense of relief wash over her as she continued to address Rider. "As you can see, these people are my peerage. They are my allies, and my most trusted friends. They're all reincarnated Devils. Please don't be worried; I didn't force them into any contracts or bind them against their will. They all joined of their own accord, and I treat them as family."

Rider inclined her head slightly, her blindfold concealing her eyes. "I see," her voice soft as usual and carrying a hint of curiosity. "I'll remember them."

Saji, still recovering from the shock of Rider's presence, managed to pick himself up from the floor. "Uh, again I didn't mean to stare at your ches—um, over there," he mumbled, scratching the back of his head sheepishly. "I'll be more careful next time."

Again, no answer came from Rider, her silence making the boy feel both awkward and uncomfortable. But that did little to stop the blush on his face from remaining and even growing more prominent as he forced himself to avert his gaze lest he be caught staring again.

Sona turned towards her Pawn and the others, noticing their not-so-subtle glances being exchanged among themselves as they struggled to find their words in the presence of Rider. "Is it just me, or does Rider-san feel very different from Tojou-sensei?" Momo commented without hesitation, inadvertently using Archer's made-up name out of force of habit. Having only spent a few hours a week at best around the Servant of the bow during his duty as a teacher, she rarely felt him to be out of place. His exotic features aside, the man tended to blend in with the crowd and modern humans quite well for someone from ancient times.

Rider on the other hand held the kind of weighty presence she would have expected from a Heroic Spirit.

"Yeah, I get that exact same feeling. It's hard to describe, but… it feels like she's not someone you can just ignore or overlook, even if you wanted to," Saji added, keeping his gaze fixed on the floor, determined not to let his eyes wander to certain areas of Rider's figure that were a bit too captivating. Meanwhile, the rest of the girls failed to contain their own awe at Rider's beauty and allure.

Sona couldn't help but feel a twinge of confusion. It wasn't that they hadn't seen beautiful women before, but there was just something about Rider that seemed to mesmerize everyone she came into contact with to some degree. She wondered if there was some sort of aura or charm surrounding her that evoked such reactions. Pushing aside her thoughts, she decided to refocus and properly introduce both parties to each other.

"Be more respectful towards Rider, all of you!" Her stern voice cut through the room, causing some to flinch at her tone. "Remember, she is a Heroic Spirit from ancient legends. Even if we do not know their names, Rider and Archer are people that have been revered throughout history. She has agreed to offer her immense power to our cause and is deserving of our every courtesy, so I must insist that you not get carried away."

'A person revered throughout history… How amusing.' Rider thought. It made her curious as to how they would react after finding out her true identity. Unbeknownst to Sona, Rider's lips twitched upwards for a split second when she heard the way her Master described both her and Archer. After having gotten more information out of the man, she knew for certain that he was hiding something from her and everyone else, and that he was not the kind of hero these people imagined him as.

A brief instance of their prior conversation they had on the roof flashed by her mind at the thought.




"You definitely know who I am. Who are you… and what is your connection with Perseus?"

Perseus, the very name evoked a tapestry of tales and legends from ancient Greece, stories interwoven with her own myth of the great and noble hero slaying the vile Gorgon with the blessings of the gods, then using her head to save Andromeda from Cetus and defeat his enemies. As Medusa pondered on these events from the past, a small scoff escaped her lips. From her memories, Perseus had emerged from the tale not as the valiant hero of lore, but as a figure tainted by personal ambition. A man driven not by noble aspirations, but by the pursuit of wealth, status, and glory.

In her recollection, that particular individual was no paragon of virtue, no beacon of selflessness. Instead, he seemed a twisted embodiment of the mortal flaws that plagued humanity — avarice, hubris, and an insatiable hunger for power and fame. Though she could not deny his cunning and resourcefulness, she found his methods ruthless and his motivations questionable.

Was he a psychopath? No, not quite. Yet, there was a darkness within him, a propensity for violence and manipulation that belied his status as a hero. He was a man who would stop at nothing to achieve his goals, heedless of the collateral damage left in his wake. It made more sense to call him an anomaly, polite and gentle on the outside, always holding onto his kind demeanor even if he was in the midst of slaughtering innocents.

In her time, such figures were not uncommon, born from the capricious whims of the gods and the turbulent currents of mortal ambition. But despite her reservations, Medusa could not bring herself to despise him in the beginning. For in the end, it was Perseus who had brought an end to her torment, to kill the monster she became who had devoured her own sisters by severing her head and granting her the release of death — or so she had believed.

Yet, any vestige of gratitude she might have harbored was swiftly extinguished by the indignity of her fate — to be used once again as a tool and straddled on his belt like a piece of clothing. The more she reflected on his actions, the more her feelings of thankfulness turned to bitterness and disappointment.

The mere possibility that Archer perhaps had a connection to Perseus sent a shiver down Rider's spine, filling her with a sense of unease and suspicion. She couldn't afford to overlook any potential threats, especially not one tied to such a figure. To her, anyone associated with that man spelled trouble — a duplicitous entity who offered an open hand while the other secretly clenched a dagger, waiting for the opportune moment to strike.

As Archer echoed her inquiry, his initial confusion morphed into an expression of incredulity and disbelief. "Connection to Perseus?" he echoed, his voice tinged with bewilderment. "What about me even remotely gives you that impression? I have neither shown nor said anything to suggest such a thing. My knowledge of Perseus stems from knowledge from the Throne, along with my own research, driven by personal curiosity about many of the legends of old and the figures that are often intertwined in them."

His words sounded reasonable enough, yet Rider couldn't shake the feeling of suspicion gnawing at her insides. Despite his logical explanation, a nagging voice within her insisted that there was more to the story, that Archer was hiding something.

"Stop lying," she interjected, her tone firm and unwavering. "You also knew who I was far too easily."

"And me knowing your identity suddenly means I have any connections to Perseus? Even you must admit that sounds a bit too far-fetched." This time, his words carried a hint of amusement. The way he regarded her was reminiscent of the playful teasing she had once received from her older sisters.

"Do you find it so hard to believe that the world only knew you as the monster you became in the end? And let's say I did know you through Perseus — wouldn't he have regaled me with tales of a terrifying monster, turning men to stone with a single glance and devouring any innocent creature it happened upon? Yet here I am, showing no intention of harming you, while you, on the other hand, have me cornered with your weapons drawn. If you're eager to enforce that part of your legend, go ahead, take a bite out of me. I doubt you'll find my blood to your liking though. It can be a bit sharp in flavor."

His confidence left Rider momentarily stunned. To encounter someone unafraid and unconcerned about her true nature was a novel experience. One that the woman wasn't so certain whether she found it refreshing or worrying.

Before she could voice her next question, Archer anticipated it, pointing to the item covering her eyes. "Your blindfold," he explained.

Her blindfold… What did that have to do with anything?

As if he could pluck her thoughts from the air, Archer chuckled, his tone laced with amusement. "Yes, your blindfold. Very few of the heroes in the Throne have any need for such a distinctive feature to be tied to their legend. I'd say less than a handful, even. And once I further narrowed it down to female candidates, I was left with only a few possibilities, which by that point already gave me some degree of certainty. Then there's your incredible strength. It was evident that the force you wielded couldn't be attributed solely to your stats, impressive as they are. Considering my own modest Strength parameter of C-, it gave me a rough idea of where you might stand, further narrowing down the list. Moreover, during our skirmish, I noticed your strength increasing subtly but steadily the more you exerted yourself. And one particular skill that came to mind to explain such physical prowess was 'Monstrous Strength'. You can imagine where my thoughts were headed."

He paused, his gaze flicking to a specific mark on her forehead which he poked once, a gesture that made Medusa instinctively draw back. It wasn't fear that gripped her, but rather a curious absence of it. She was caught off guard by the lack of apprehension she felt in his presence.

Archer's smirk widened, aggravating her to the point of wanting to wipe it off his face. "Now, add a blindfold, Monstrous Strength, and a woman into the equation, topped with a mark on her forehead resembling a snake. Who could possibly fit such a description, I wonder? And you know what? Even then, I couldn't be entirely certain. That comment I made about you turning into a monster was merely a ploy to gauge your reaction. Your response, however, confirmed my suspicions. And when I saw the partial manifestation of a white horse as you prepared to use your Noble Phantasm, well, that sealed the deal."


She remained silent, processing his words. Was this man a detective?

"So you see, it had nothing to do with some connection to Perseus or any other figure from Greek mythology. I simply pieced together traits you display naturally and in our battle to determine your true identity."

"Then who are you?" She asked, his identity now being the only possible thing he could give her which would serve to dispel any and all doubts she possessed about his nature and any possible relation or connection to her past. "If you're truly telling me the truth, then tell me your true name. It's difficult to trust an Archer who fights like a Saber, and it's clear to me that I am not the only one who you're keeping secrets from."

'Perceptive as always, this woman.' For someone who walked around with a blindfold covering her face, Rider was proving herself to be quite sharp. Given a proper Master and opportunity, Emiya had no doubt that Rider could function as a deadly strategist when it came to personal combat, differing greatly from someone like Lancer, who was action first and questions later.

For a brief moment, he did consider just telling her about his memories from different summonings and to blame it all on the imperfect system put in place in this world. But if she did not believe that explanation, then she might be able to figure out his connection to the Counter Force and reveal it to Sona.

That information in itself was not something he wanted to be passed around in this world in any way shape or form. Despite him not being put here with any duties related to that, it would merely be a source of misunderstanding between him and the other Devils. Better to keep it a secret then to risk it.

"Oh please, do you think I was born yesterday or something? I may have gotten a few hits to the head from your vicious kicks, but it wasn't enough to turn me into an idiot. No sensible Servant would ever just give away their true name to anyone but their Master. Much less another Servant of all people, whether they be allies or enemies, it does not matter and you know that. I found out about your true name through my own means, it was in no way unfair or a trick. If you wish to know about my identity as well then you have to figure it out yourself." With that declaration, he vanished from sight, leaving her to mull over his words.

Despite his logical deductions and claims of being a sleuth, she couldn't shake the feeling that there was more to his revelations than met the eye.

Left all alone on the rooftop, she took a few moments to compose herself and put together everything she'd been able to learn so far. On one hand, Archer's explanation did little to answer the strange feeling that kept popping up inside her whenever she looked at him, this sensation of familiarity that Rider was certain that Archer knew the source of if she were to directly inquire about it. But on the other hand, he was also correct to point out that no Servant would ever give out their name to another Heroic Spirit so easily, and she was a fool for even attempting to do so.

But she wasn't willing to give up, she would get her answers one way or another.

Her perception of the space around her remained sharp enough that she didn't need to look around to find Archer's Master. Knowing full well that the buxom redhead Devil still occupied the room in the old building she had first kicked Archer into.

Rider had already gained an impression of the girl, for she seemed to be rather close to Archer. And even though their meeting had been brief, she could still see that their relationship went beyond that of a typical Master and Servant bond. Or rather, one side was obviously looking at the other with a different kind of desire and wish. Whether Archer knew about it or was purposely ignoring it she could not tell, at least not without further observations of them in the future.

"Does she know his true name? Perhaps I can try to find out about him from the Devils. It's hard to place trust in the words of a liar. " Perhaps her Master knew more about this. Her punishment should be done by now, so not seeing any reason to remain on the rooftop any longer, Rider vanished into her spiritual form.




"Thank you," Rider replied stoically, her voice soft as she accepted the teacup offered by the young brown haired Devil, Tomoe Meguri, who just a moment ago had been staring at her without reservation. The porcelain felt delicate when held in her fingertips, a stark contrast to the weightiness of the atmosphere in the room, especially when she knew why they were all so tense. As she brought the cup to her lips, the aroma of the tea enveloped her senses, offering a momentary respite from the tension that hung thick in the air.

Around her, Sona and her peerage sat in a semicircle, their gazes flickering between Rider and one another, their expressions a mixture of curiosity, apprehension, and perhaps a hint of admiration. Despite their King's apparent ease with Rider's presence as Sona had each of them state their name and role in the peerage, the rest of the gathered Devils remained on edge, unsure of how to interact with the enigmatic Servant before them. Rider's blindfold added an air of mystery to her demeanor, leaving the student council to wonder where her true focus lay.

Sona, ever perceptive of the mood in the room, sought to address the palpable tension with a gentle gesture, lightly clapping her hands to draw everyone's attention. Her voice, though soft-spoken, carried a sense of authority balanced by understanding. "Now, I don't know the details of whatever procedures a Magus from your world would go through whenever they managed to successfully summon a Heroic Spirit, and given our circumstances I must apologize if things look a bit underwhelming and that we couldn't prepare much to celebrate such an occasion."

Rider listened attentively, her expression impassive as she absorbed Sona's words. The concept of celebrating the summoning of a Servant was foreign to her, a notion so out of water that she had to ask herself whether her Master was messing with her or not. In her experience, summoning a Servant was not cause for revelry; it was a purely strategic move, a means to an end in pursuit of a greater goal in a bloody war. Yet, she remained silent, choosing not to voice her thoughts aloud. Instead, she chose to take another sip of her tea, allowing its warmth to soothe her as she observed her curious, albeit naive, Devil of a Master and her peerage.

"In any event, now that introductions have been made by all of us, it's only fair that I learn your name as well, Rider," Sona began, her voice carrying a melodic cadence as she leaned forward, the soft glow of the room's lighting casting a warm aura around her. Her slender fingers delicately traced the rim of her own teacup, the polished porcelain surface catching and refracting the light in a mesmerizing dance. Across the glossy wooden table, her peerage leaned in eagerly, their eyes alight with curiosity at the prospect of learning the identity of the enigmatic Servant that had appeared in their midst.

"…In front of all of them?" Rider asked, gesturing at her peerage, to which the heiress nodded her head.

"They are my closest allies, and I trust each and every one of them with my own life. You don't need to worry about them betraying your confidence. I must admit, I myself initially mistook you for Perseus," Sona continued, her words laced with a hint of self-reflection. "It was an oversight on my part, failing to consider the intricacies of the summoning ritual and the potential variability it entails. I was working under the belief that the Pegasus feather would have acted as a catalyst and given me the Heroic Spirit I had thought would make for a good Servant, but it turns out I was far too optimistic for my own good. N-Nevertheless, I am extremely grateful for your presence here, and it would be an honor to have you join us in our endeavors!"

These Devils were indeed very interesting, far from the idea of what a Devil was in Rider's mind, or other creatures of a similar nature she had encountered in her previous life. 'They are a surprisingly amusing bunch. Hard to believe they are anything but ordinary human teenagers from how they act.'

Meanwhile, Sona's peerage remained on the edge of their seats, hanging onto every word spoken in the exchange. Their youthful faces were a mixture of anticipation and intrigue, eager to unravel the mysteries surrounding their newest ally. Tsubaki in particular, couldn't contain her curiosity, her eyes flickering with unspoken questions as she stole glances at Rider from across the table.

An idea began to form in Rider's mind, one that wasn't appropriate to attempt with her new Master but an experiment she wanted to conduct to see their reactions. Suppressing a small smile, she shook her head imperceptibly. "You are mistaken about one thing, Master," she interjected, her voice soft yet firm, carrying a hint of amusement. "The catalyst did not fail at all — it very much succeeded in summoning a Heroic Spirit linked to the Pegasus feather which you used for the ritual. Your miscalculation was merely that Perseus was not the only Heroic Spirit with strong ties to the catalyst you used."

The revelation sent a ripple of shock through the group, catching even Tsubaki and Sona off guard. Their eyes widened, and they exchanged bewildered glances. This was not the turn of events they had anticipated. The Sitri heiress' mind raced, recalling her extensive research on legendary heroes, but none seemed to align with the traits shown by Rider, much less having any connection with Pegasus. Unless…

"You're the Corinthian hero who slew the Chimera? Bellerophon?" Sona blurted out, her voice tinged with disbelief as she struggled to reconcile the image of the famed male hero with the beautiful woman seated before them. Was it possible that certain legends she was familiar with had the heroes be of the opposite gender in Archer and Rider's world? That could explain why she hadn't been able to find anything about him in the first place! Memories of what she'd read of the hero Bellerophon's exploits flooded her mind, but they all depicted a male figure riding into battle atop a mighty, flying steed.

"No." Before she could even go any further down that line of thought, Rider shook her head and immediately dispelled that misunderstanding from her mind. "Try again."

Her firm denial shattered her assumptions, prompting Sona to grasp at straws, desperately trying to connect the dots.

"Percy Jackson?" Saji's ill-timed suggestion only served to earn him a sharp rebuke from Tsubasa, leaving him to nurse a bruised ego in addition to his already bruised cheek.

"That's a fictional character from a modern storybook, you idiot!" Tsubasa scolded, frustration evident in her voice as she shook the Pawn by his collar. "And besides, she's a woman, in case you somehow forgot! Not sure how you even managed that, what with how much you've been ogling her."

While Tsubaki thankfully stepped in before a debate could spark among her peerage, Sona racked her brain for any other potential candidates for Rider's true identity. "Athen—" Her words trailed off as she realized her mistake, a sinking feeling settling in the pit of her stomach. Archer's warning echoed in her mind, reminding her of the sheer impossibility of summoning a deity like Athena as a Servant. The subtle twitch in Rider's expression only confirmed her error, leaving her grasping for alternatives. But who else could Rider be, if not one of the few heroes associated with Pegasus such as Perseus and Bellerophon?

In the hushed silence that followed, a name surfaced from the depths of Sona's subconscious, escaping her lips almost involuntarily.


The word hung heavy in the air, casting a pall of uncertainty over the room. Her initial impulse was to retract the name, to apologize profusely for even suggesting a comparison to such a monster with the beautiful Heroic Spirit in front of her. The last thing she wanted to do was to offend their esteemed guest by likening her to one of the most feared monsters in all of history.


But then, a reaction — one she had never thought to anticipate — came from Rider that rippled through the room. A small smile, almost imperceptible, graced her lips. Sona's heart skipped a beat as she observed the subtle shift in the Servant's expression, her senses on high alert.

Could it be? Had she stumbled upon the truth by accident? Had she called upon such a monster by using the feather of Pegasus — who had been born from Medusa's blood — as the catalyst while seeking to summon the very man who took her head?

The realization hit her like a ton of bricks, sending a chill down her spine. If her intuition was correct, then they were in the presence of a being feared and revered in equal measure. The mere thought of facing a creature capable of petrifying with a single glance caused her heartbeat to become rapid while her breath hitched, and her hands began trembling with a mixture of fear and anticipation.

And then, with a smile that seemed to widen with each passing moment, Rider finally spoke, her words shattering the fragile calm that only a minute ago had started to settle over the room.

"Hmm~ You seem to be operating under the impression that only so-called heroes can ascend to the Throne, Master. That is incorrect. It isn't about heroic deeds but rather, a matter of simple fame. Therefore, with sufficient renown — by deeds good or evil — heroes, anti-heroes, monsters, villains… even certain objects can all find a place in the Throne. Including one such as I. Also…" She took her time to 'look' at her Master's friends, turning her head towards each of them so they could 'feel' her gaze upon them. "I'm feeling hungry, Master," Rider declared with an ear-to-ear smile, her words washing like a wave of dread over everyone in the room.

In an instant, chaos descended upon the student council. Sona's grip on her teacup faltered, sending the dish crashing towards the floor. The sound of the shattering porcelain acted as a signal shot for her peerage to launch themselves into equal parts alarm and panic, leaping into action with a flurry of screams and frantic movements.


"Don't look!"

Saji found himself suddenly besieged as one of his comrades lunged at him, shielding his eyes with both her hands and inadvertently making both of them fall to the ground.

"I don't taste good at all! I promise!"

"Who locked the fucking door!"

"Get your hands off of me, Ruruko!"

"I don't want you to get turned to stone, Gen-kun!"

Amidst the pandemonium, Rider remained unperturbed, a smirk playing at the corners of her lips as she observed the scene unfolding before her. She reclined in her chair, taking another leisurely sip of tea, thoroughly entertained by the spectacle.

'Devils or not, they are fun to mess with,' she mused to herself, finding unexpected amusement in the chaos. As she watched her newfound companions scramble about, she couldn't help but feel a sense of contentment wash over her.

Perhaps her presence in this world wouldn't be so bad after all.


-Rias Germory's Home-

"Hah, that was far more stressful than I would have liked it to be," Archer muttered to himself, his gaze fixed on Rias' house as he reflected on his recent encounter with Rider. There was something peculiar about her interest in his identity, particularly her fixation on the mention of Perseus, and how he might tie into that. It didn't add up, leading him to suspect that there might be more at play than met the eye regarding her desire to find out his identity. Perhaps the summoning system had glitched, dredging up foggy old memories from past summonings and muddling her perception of reality.

"Yet it's obvious that she doesn't recall anything involving me. At least as of yet," Archer continued, his brow furrowing with concern. Still, he couldn't shake the feeling of unease that lingered in the pit of his stomach. "And I can't even guess which version of her past summonings she might have recalled in the first place if that were to happen."

His interactions with Rider during the Fuyuki Holy Grail Wars had oftentimes been less than ideal, to say the least. While she seemed friendly enough with some versions of Emiya Shirou, her demeanor toward him in every iteration of the fifth Grail War was notably colder. He couldn't blame her, considering his history with his younger self and his less-than-friendly intentions. Even so, it was imperative that he caution his Master and her peerage to be careful around Rider, and refrain from divulging too much information.

"I'll have to inform Akeno to be extra cautious around Rider, seeing as she knows my name," he resolved, steeling himself for the tasks that lay ahead. "And I'll make sure that none of them reveal too much."

With a resigned sigh, Archer entered the house, prepared to tackle his chores and attend to his duties. However, he was immediately taken aback by the sight that greeted him — a sea of red rose petals scattered across the floor, illuminated by the soft glow of candles. And in the center of the room, his Master reclining on a chair, clad in revealing lingerie, a mischievous smile playing on her lips.

"Welcome home, Archer~" she greeted him cheerfully.

Archer rubbed his temples wearily, bracing himself for the inevitable cleanup of all these petals he'd have to deal with once this was over.

"Alright, I'll bite. What is this, and why are you doing it?" With time and patience, he had come to understand more about his Master bit by bit. She wasn't hard to figure out by any means. Pure-blooded Devil or not, the girl was no different from an open book, even when compared to the teenaged former humans that made up her peerage.

"This is a private celebration of both my newest peerage member and our victory against Riser!" She said without hesitation, having him doubt his ears at the first statement in particular.


Rias couldn't help but grin at his expression, as in her mind, having Archer be caught off guard like this was an achievement in itself. "Well, she's not my Pawn yet, but I know she'll agree when I discuss the details more thoroughly tomorrow! And you won't believe who it is~!"

The way she spoke made him believe he already knew this person. The chances of it being anyone from Sona's group was extremely unlikely, leaving only the human students of Kuoh Academy.

A weird expression showed on his face as he adopted a serious tone of voice. "Master, I understand you might be feeling a bit desperate to have a complete peerage, but having Kiryuu Aika join your group is a mistake. That girl is a calamity in her own right and makes Issei look like a voluntarily chaste saint by comparison."

That girl was easily one of his most troublesome students, one that constantly tried to make silly lewd comments, and even whisper to other girls about the size of his genitals. He lost count of the number of times he had to send her outside just to gain some moments of peace in the classroom so he could continue his lessons in a semi-orderly fashion.

"I can handle and even understand why you had Issei join; the Boosted Gear is a marvelous Sacred Gear capable of great things. But Mystic Eyes that lets one size up a man's private parts is not worth even a single Pawn piece."

Rias blinked in confusion. "What? No! I'm not talking about Aika and I'm not that desperate!" She exclaimed. "And for your information, I don't believe Aika would be that bad of a candidate. She's a lot smarter than most people give her credit for, and in my experience, that can easily lead to a strong talent with magic. And while I can admit that she's quite the character, you'll find she's actually really nice if you just put in the effort to get to know her."

"Indeed, and I am capable of using True Magic. It's fine, Master, we all are entitled to our own delusions when we're feeling stressed." He was barely able to hide his chuckles before a pillow was thrown into his face.

Still, if that perverted girl wasn't who his Master wanted for her peerage, then that only left two possible candidates in his mind. Murayama and Katase were both rather gifted with kendo to the point of Yuuto himself having mentioned their skill on past occasions, impressive for a couple of ordinary humans. Given they did not possess any manner of Sacred Gear as far as he knew, then a single Pawn would be more than enough for either of them. But Rias had only mentioned one new peerage member, so it was honestly a coin toss between either of the girls. "Mind telling me who it might be?"

"Nope! It's a surprise~!"

"Why bother hiding it when you always end up mumbling your secrets in the middle of your sleep?"

"Now you're just pushing it!"

"Heh, forgive me for that, Master, but you are very easy to mess around with, and I have to find my fun where I can. I will strive to do it less often, but I make no promises." His smirk just helped to make Rias's face turn red from either anger or some other emotion.

"Jokes aside, what is this truly about? I doubt you went this far to set up such a… romantic-themed atmosphere to celebrate a new Pawn, or that it has anything to do with your victory over Riser."

Rias hesitated, then eventually got up and walked behind Archer and took hold of the doorknob before she slowly closed it.

"Well… I guess I just wanted to spend some time with you. Just the two of us."

The next 5 chapters of Snafu, and my other Fate fics (Fate Coiling Sword with 3 chapters, A Fake Familiar Reborn with 3 chapters, Steel Eyed Faker soon to be 3 chapters, Hound having 1 and To love a sword having 4 chapters) are already available on my P treon. With 4 more Broly chapters at /NimtheWriter. Also, I post commissioned arts on each story, already posted a few on an Archer's Promise, Broly and Snafu.