Disclaimer: I don't own Ragnarok Online or anything related to it. It belongs to Gravity Corporation. All the characters in this story are owned by Gravity too. All I own is the plot of this story.
Why I Chose To Become a Crusader

By Sagialithe Fury

I've had many questions in my mind ever since I, Briten Pyrod became a crusader. One of the most important out of all of them is why did I decide to become a crusader. Those were the days; I was still a very young swordsman, at the age of 16.

I can't remember that well why I joined this group. At first, I wanted to be a knight like my parents. My father was a spear-knight and my mother was a two-handed-sword-knight. When I came out of the testing grounds in the satellite city of Izlude as a swordsman, my parents immediately taught me the way of chivalry.

I remember that day pretty well, the day I finally became a crusader. Almost everyone important to me was there, my parents and the other crusaders. That day…was the saddest day of my life.

"Congratulations Briten Pyrod! You are finally a crusader!" Michael Cantonyon said as he extended his left hand to Briten.

Briten stood up from kneeling and shook Michael's hand with his right hand. "Thank you to you for everything Sir Cantonyon." he said.

The voices of two people could be heard running upstairs to the crusaders' headquarters. They were two knights, one male and the other female.

"Briten! How could you!" the male knight said.

"Father, mother?" said Briten in inquiry.

"Ah, the Pyrods, did you come here to congratulate your son?" asked Michael.

"Shut up Cantonyon! Briten, why did you choose this as your profession!" Briten's father said angrily. He went over to his son. His wife held his arm.

"James, do not do it." his wife said to him.

"Do not stop me Myrna!" James said. He then opened his fist and straightened it flat. He slapped Myrna on her face when she pulled his arm a second time.

"Ahh!" Myrna fell on the floor, her face red and bruised. She was conscious, but she didn't stand up. She feared her husband.

"Mother!" said Briten as he pulled out his Flamberge.

He was in his battle stance. He attacked James but James blocked his Flamberge with his shield and countered with a punch to chest. It was not covered with armor, so the impact of the punch sent Briten flying towards a room full of shield.

"James, Briten, stop this now!" shouted Michael Cantonyon.

"You have dishonored us Briten. I feel like disowning you." James said in anger and sorrow.

"No, I didn't! I chose what I wanted to be!"

Briten took one shield from the stack and held it tightly. He held it sideways, the tip pointing to his left side. "This is for mother!" he threw it at his father with all his might.

James was hit by the shield, it spun back to Briten's arm. Briten caught it. James fell on the floor, he was hurt but it did not matter to him. "Damn you!" he said as he stood up and pulled out his Glaive.

Briten walked towards his father, Flamberge in hand. One of the higher rank crusaders, Murnak Myjol went into the room. He saw the woman, leaning against the wall as he came in. He then saw Briten, about to attack James. He went in front of Briten.

"Do not do it." he said in a calm tone.

"Move out of the way Sir Myjol!" Briten said.

"Briten, what have you learned in my Test of Patience?" Murnak questioned him.

Briten dropped his Flamberge on the floor. He bowed down his head, trying his best not to look at Murnak's sharp eyes.

"I learned that given time, a problem will pass over and an answer to success would be found."

"Exactly, give your parents time to accept the fact that you are a crusader, a messenger from God."

Briten helped his mother stand up. His father looked at him with scorn but Briten did not mind. He placed his mother on a chair and went to his father. James put his Glaive back on his back.

"I know you don't like my second profession but it was my choice. I'm finally a man and I can choose whatever I want to do with my life. If you can not accept the way I am now, then it is better for you to leave me, father. Briten said, trying to hold back his tears.

His mother started crying. She wiped her tears with a piece of cloth but she was so proud that her son had turned into a man yet so sad that they had to leave him. "Briten, we'll always be together. Remember that." she stood up and walked over to James.

"If this your choice, then be happy with it." James said. He and Myrna left Prontera Castle without any more words to Briten.

After they left, Briten fell to the floor, tears rushing out from his eyes.

"Mother, father, I'm sorry." He wept in front of Murnak and Michael. Michael held out his hand and helped him stand up.

"It's alright Briten, it's alright." he said.

That day, I never saw my father again. Occasionally, my mother would have the time to visit me. She would lend me some money and necessities. She would always tell me that my father was at home. I never went back home. My new home was Prontera Castle. There was a room for every crusader there. One of them was mine. It was fine and simple.

Now, I still think of that reason why it turned out this way. A crusader's job was to fight in the holy war against Glast Heim. We also have to stay faithful to God and become his disciples like the acolytes and priests.

People say that the crusader's job is more generous and humble than a knight's job. I would have to agree with that. A knight who has joined the Prontera Chivalry must protect those living within Prontera, including the King himself. They have to eliminate any threat appointed to the capital. A crusader's job, on the other hand, was to protect all from the evil monstrosities that have escaped from hell and have appeared on earth. They are not attackers, but defenders. They defend the weak from temptation and sin. They follow God's will by fighting for him as soldiers of Christ. Christian charity is a must for every crusader.

It was a good reason, but no. It wasn't what I was looking for. Was it to become stronger? A crusader's arsenals are blessed by the holy element. They also have skills to pursue and defend against those who oppose the holy element such as monsters who are of the dark or undead element. Since dark and undead monsters have been considered as the most powerful types of monsters around the Rune-Midgard Kingdom, crusaders have the advantage of becoming more powerful.

No! It wasn't that either. It was something deeper, too deep for the naked eye to see. It was a feeling, a feeling of comfort, of humility, of generosity, of kindness, of hospitality. Yes, that feeling is love. It was love that made me decide to join those who fought the holy war. Love made me even closer to God. I love a person, a fellow crusader to the exact. One mention of her name makes me feel like I am on a bed of roses. Her name is Gabrielle Valentine.

Gabrielle Valentine is an old childhood friend of mine. We both stepped out of the Swordsman Association together on that faithful day. We became close friends ever since. She told me that she wanted to become a crusader. She was fascinated with everything about her religion. She wanted to strengthen her faith. I always had to follow my parents' request of becoming a skilful knight. Now that I am a crusader, I can see her all the time. Her dark-green hair, her fair skin, her fit body, and her green eyes, full of life, youth and beauty made me flourish with feelings I never imagined I could feel for another person.

I remember that day I confessed my love for her. We were at Glast Heim. It was another siege with the undead. Gabrielle and I were told by Sir Cantonyon to go to the second floor of the prison.

Briten and Gabrielle walked, anxiously waiting for any monster to come by their way.

"That is peculiar." Briten said as he leaned on a wall.

"What is?" asked Gabrielle.

"There are no monsters around us. I wonder where they could have gone to."

A mob of Baphomet Juniors suddenly went towards the two. Briten went in front of Gabrielle.

"Gabrielle, get out of the range of my Grand Cross."

"Alright." she said. She walked far away from Briten.

The mob closed in and was near Briten. Briten took a deep breath and looked at the ceiling. "God Almighty, give me the power of the Holy Spirit and Your Son, Jesus Christ, that I may be able to purify the souls of these creatures with your holy cross!" a large cross of light appeared under Briten. The cross enlarged and hit the mob of Baphomet Juniors. They incinerated upon impact. Briten felt the pain of the monsters when he did Grand Cross. He leaned again on wall, trying to recover from the pain.

"Gabrielle, please heal me."

"Okay, just hold on."

Before Gabrielle could heal Briten, a Baphomet stepped out from the passage and were walking towards Briten and Gabrielle.

"No!" shouted Briten.

The Baphomet struck its Crescent Scythe to the ground making an earthquake which made some parts of the ceiling fall on the two. Briten pushed Gabrielle away from the falling debris and both of them fell on the floor. Briten couldn't move because he was still hurt by his Grand Cross. Gabrielle stood up and fought the Baphomet. She used her shield as a boomerang and kept on throwing it at the monster. The Baphomet turned to her and was about to hit her with his Crescent Scythe. Upon seeing its stance, Briten stood up and ran to Gabrielle.

"Gabrielle!" he shouted.

"Briten, don't, you're still hurt."

"Look out!"

Briten pushed Gabrielle aside and faced the Baphomet. By the time he faced it, the blade of the Cresecent Scythe slashed his front, creating a gash. Blood spilled from his flying body. His body landed right beside Gabrielle and he bled rapidly.

"Oh my gosh! Briten!" Gabrielle kept healing him.

"Ugh…Gabrielle…I…love…you." Briten said, he then fainted.

"Noooooooo! Don't sleep, stay awake!" Gabrielle broke out in tears. She wept over her close friend's body.

She looked behind her and saw the Baphomet preparing for another strike. Warp portals opened up near the Baphomet, priests, priestesses and crusaders came out. Reinforcements came. The crusaders kept doing Holy Cross while some of the priests and priestesses did Magnus Excorcismus.

"Someone, help me here!" she cried out.

A priest soon cast a warp portal under Gabrielle and Briten. "Go through this portal. It will lead you outside where the recovery station is located. They will help you soon." he said. Gabrielle nodded.

The two appeared outside. Priests and Priestesses soon carried Briten's body on a stretcher and unto the recovery station. Gabrielle slowly followed behind them. After the priests and priestesses examined his body, they told Gabrielle to warp back to the Prontera Sanctuary. There, they will operate on his serious injury. Gabrielle and Briten on a stretcher, went inside a warp portal.

They soon found themselves inside the Prontera Sanctuary. Gabrielle looked around for anyone who could help her lover.

"Anyone, please help me!" she cried out again in tears.

"What do you need ma'am?" asked a priest.

"My fellow crusader is hurt; you need to check on him."

A group of priests and priestesses took the stretcher with Briten on it to a room. There, they did an array of tests and examinations if Briten would survive. They operated on his injuries. After all was fixed, they healed his wounds.

Gabrielle was in his room. She stared at Briten's body. He still had a smile on his face. She went over to him and brushed his purple hair with her fingers. She wept again and the tears fell on his face.

"He said…he loved me." She wondered if that was true.

In Briten's sub consciousness, he remembered the past. His past and all the events and challenges he has gone through. He questioned himself why he did these things. The most important thing he wanted to answer was why he wanted to become a crusader.

After hours of sleeping, he woke up. He looked to his left and saw Gabrielle on a chair, out of her armor. She was sleeping, her face red with emotion. There were still a few droplets of tears on her face up to her cheek. He smiled at her.

"Gabrielle." he gently said.

Gabrielle opened her eyes and saw Briten smiling at her. She stood up and knelt beside Briten on the bed.

"Oh Briten, do you really mean it?" she asked.

"Of course I do. I love you very much Gabrielle." he replied.

Gabrielle soon went on top of the bed and kissed Briten. Briten embraced her and returned the kiss. Both were very happy. They loved each other with all the love they could show. Their feelings brought them together. Their feelings answered an unanswered question.

Now I know why I chose to become a crusader.