Disclaimer: I don't own Rosario+Vampire, or any elements from the Ace Combat timeline, don't sue.

A/N: Sorry for the long delay, had my wisdom teeth removed, and well, that really puts a dent in people's plans when that happens, so my apologies to everyone! Only one more chapter left ladies and gentlemen. Yes, I know, very depressing, I'm sorry, but with all things, everything must come to its eventual end. This is the second to last chapter, and it will be here that we will bear witness to the final battle between Tsukune and Pixy. He had vanquished the likes of Fairy Tale, The Belkan Knights, Grabacr, Kupochenko, and Bristowe…and so it comes to this. Brother against brother, friend against friend, hero versus the traitor, Demon Lord versus Solo Wing Pixy. Will Tsukune be able to stop the soulstone detonation or will there be another earth-shattering tragedy, bringing about the destruction of both worlds. As always, I hope you all enjoy and please, leave a review, thank you.

- The Demon Lord of the Round Table

A song I suggest everyone listen to while reading this is this song: "Zero" – Keiki Kobayashi - Ace Combat Zero Soundtrack

"This is just regular speech between characters."
"This is someone's thoughts or speech on TV, book, or mind."
This is Inner Moka speaking through the Rosario.


"All held the finite and infinite as unrelated. None could foresee that the history of the two would become one. Without beginning or end, the ring stretches to infinite." – Unknown

Chapter 11: Zero

November 29, 2012, Tauberg, Belka…

I looked closely upon the features of the face that belonged to Solo Wing Pixy. He looked grossly exhausted, like he had fought in many battles upon that vast battlefield of life. He covered his face with his hands as he sighed quietly to himself, the camera was still rolling and the notepad still in my hand, jotting down various notes of all that he had said. The emotion that he showed, I thought, would turn this documentary into a bestseller. I was loving every minute of it, and I knew now that leaving everything behind for this journey was the right thing to do. I could see the tears stream down his face from his eyes; I was definitely taken aback from this. Never in a million years would I have imagined someone as strong as Pixy according to the legends, cry in front of a reporter, much less on camera for public viewing later. But in truth, I felt sorry for this man…

"So you finally resurfaced in that final battle against your former best friend…" I said, more as a statement than anything else. "What exactly happened between the two of you? What became of you in the aftermath…and what about…him?"

"Deep down, I'd like to think he's still my buddy…Despite everything that I did, and every that had happened between us…I…" Pixy dropped his sniper rifle as I caught it and gently placed it on the floor as he sobbed quietly into his hands.

March 9, 2011, The Round Table…

Immediately Tsukune dropped to his knees towards PJ, attempting to wake his number two up, but to no avail. He then placed his fingers upon his neck as his eyes widened in shock and horror as he felt no pulse from PJ; the young boy was dead at the hands of his former best friend. Tsukune felt tears stream down his cheeks as he looked back towards Pixy with a look of anguish and rage, getting back to his feet.

"You murdering bastard…" Tsukune thought to himself. And seemingly, as if Pixy could read his thoughts, he spoke out.

"I'm sorry I had to kill him, but it's better this way. He died quick and without pain." Pixy said to him.

"YOU MURDERED HIM! YOU SON OF A BITCH!" Tsukune yelled out.

"I told him that his lofty and misguided ideals would get him killed out here one day, and it looks like I was right. Just admit it; he was never as good or as close to you as I was. He might have had the callsign of Galm 2, but he was only trying to pretend to be me, but he just fell short of everyone's expectations, buddy." Pixy said which only made Tsukune angrier at him as he drew up his sword back into an attack stance as Ruby chimed in.

"Confirmed reactivation of the soulstone! Tsukune, continue your mission, engage!"

With that, Pixy fired another long-range cone of fire from his sword right towards Tsukune as he dodged out of the way, feeling the searing heat from those hellish flames.

"Stand by, we're analyzing the situation." Ruby said as Tsukune charged closer to Pixy, firing back his own shot of lightning as a response to Pixy. Pixy of course got out of the way before it could score a hit.

"Here comes the snow…" Pixy said as he got ready to engage Tsukune in melee.

"Cut down the enemy, we'll fill you in ASAP!" Ruby again chimed in.

Immediately the two exchanged blows; wasting no further time on pre-battle pleasantries. Tsukune wanted to destroy Pixy for everything he had done, from his treachery after the battle with Grabacr to PJ's death. But yet, something weighed heavily down on Tsukune's heart. He again struggled to find reasons to fight his former best friend but nonetheless continued his relentless onslaught of offense against Pixy.

"Those who survive a long time on the battlefield start to think they're invincible." Pixy said over the radio as he attempted to take Tsukune's head off with his new flaming zweihander-like sword but Tsukune parried as the two entered a sword deadlock. "I bet you do too, buddy…"

Angrily Tsukune rammed his foot straight into Pixy's face, sending him back a few feet but quickly had to roll to his right in order to dodge yet another cone of fire. Again, Tsukune ran straight towards Pixy as the two again exchanged various sword strikes and parries. It was quite evident now; the two of them were a dead even match for each other. With each blow, the earth below them seemed to shutter at their ungodly strength, a strength that perhaps mortal men were never meant to have. But the battle would continue on, regardless. Tsukune fired yet another line of lightning, but used it more as a misdirection ploy as Pixy was forced to counter with his own cone of fire, the two negating each other but with Tsukune right behind Pixy. Though the first blow was blocked, the second was not as the tip of Tsukune's blade left a long cut along Pixy's back, cutting through his thin armor as he jerked forward and turned around to see his former buddy lying in wait.

"I don't understand you, Pixy. Why did you betray me? Of everyone, why you?" Tsukune snapped at him as he spat, placing himself in a defensive position.

"That's right buddy, you don't understand me, and you never will. I had my own reasons to do what I did, and I feel no remorse…" Pixy said as he charged at Tsukune again as the two went at it in close-quarters melee. They both exchanged blow after blow with their swords as Moka, Ruby, Mizore, and Kurumu watching the fight at a safe distance away.

"There's a special layer in hell dedicated to people like yourself, Pixy…Say hi to Judas for me you son of a bitch!" Tsukune yelled as struck his sword into Pixy's shoulder, watching it draw blood from his ex-friend as Pixy leapt backwards and away from the reach of Tsukune's vengeful hands.

"How can you say that when you yourself are conflicted as to your own reasons for fighting?" Pixy shot back at him.

"Phase 1 analysis complete! Psychic waves detected from the enemy; he's controlling the soulstone launch and detonation sequences!" Ruby informed Tsukune as Pixy began to cast a much more powerful spell this time as the earth beneath their feet shook again as Pixy casted a huge ball of intense light, brighter than the sun as everything seemed to explode in front of Tsukune like a burst missile, thrown back from the force as he hit the side of a mountain hard as the ball of light dissipated while Pixy spoke again.

"Can you see that barrier from here, buddy?" Pixy said as he charged forward while Tsukune barely had enough time to parry his attack as he looked him dead in the eye. "What has barriers ever given us humans?"

"That barrier is there to protect both worlds from those who have gone insane and lost touch with reality like you!" Tsukune shot back at him attempted an overhead strike but was blocked yet again. The whole scene looked like the final boss battle in a Star Wars movie between the Jedi hero and the Sith villain. Or to more accurately put it, Cloud Strife facing off against Sephiroth from the final battle of Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children.

"We're going to start over from scratch. Humanity will be given another chance to start over with a borderless, barrier-less world, a world without youkai influence. That's what the soulstone is for." Pixy calmly stated as he summoned that same burst spell once again as a ball of intensely bright light blinded Tsukune temporarily, sending him flying backwards right into the mountains again as Pixy disappeared from his sights.

"There's only one way, buddy. You gotta fight for what you believe in." Pixy stated to him but then asked him another question that forced Tsukune to hesitate in his own tracks. "So I ask you again, what are you fighting for?"

"I…I'm fighting for…I…" Tsukune struggled to find an answer as he felt himself tear up but was soon attacked again by Pixy with his own relentless blows, blocking each one deftly as they once again ended up deadlock.

"You don't know why you're fighting. You're just the lapdog of the youkai, but fear not brother, I will liberate your mind!" Pixy yelled as he kicked Tsukune into the ground and pointed his zweihander right towards the Demon Lord's chest, only to have him roll away as Tsukune looked back up at him with eyes of contempt and hatred. "It's pretty ironic buddy. Two dogs like us fighting the final battle. It's all lead up to this one point."

"You're no different Pixy! You'll pay for killing PJ like that! Even you must meet your own maker one day, and today, Razgriz is your reaper…" Tsukune said coldly, his voice now much different along with his demeanor.

"There's no mercy in war. People live and people die. That's all there is to it, buddy." Pixy said as the two engaged in melee once again, sword strikes being heard everywhere as all looked upon the battle. Moka worriedly looked on, feeling utterly helpless much like her sealed self usually did against powerful enemies. Inner Moka's first instinct was to protect her bloodmate, who himself used to be very dependant upon her for protection. But nowadays, the opposite seemed more true, but even so, old habits die hard as every inch of her being screamed at her to kick Pixy to oblivion.

"We have to leave it in Tsukune's hands now…He's grown really strong over the years, hasn't he?" Mizore calmly stated with the lollipop in her mouth.

"We should be over there supporting him, not standing here on the sidelines!" Inner Moka yelled out.

"Tsukune doesn't want us to get involved. As far as he's concerned this is a personal vendetta between him and Pixy. I'll respect his wishes, even if I do want to help rip Pixy to shreds right now." Ruby said as Kurumu sighed; not saying a word as she helplessly looked upon her destined one and the one who she started to love fighting. It tore her heart apart in two.

"I somehow knew it would come to this eventually, that it would be him that we would be depending on in the final battle…I knew it ever since he liberated my home village…all the other snow fairies knew it too." Mizore said as she looked over to Moka. "Have faith in him, vampire."

"I won't forgive anyone if something happens to Tsukune…" Inner Moka coldly shot back as she covered her face to not let anyone else see her watery eyes.

"Neither will I, Moka. I'm with you on that at the very least." Mizore stated as she placed her hand upon Inner Moka's shoulder.

"You fired up?" Pixy asked Tsukune as the two continued to slash and hack away at each other. "Then cut me down!"

Their swords met each other with great fury, sparks flying all over as the fight grew more and more intense, as if it already wasn't. Again, Pixy summoned that destructive ball of bright light as it forced Tsukune to leap up into the air as he attempted to find his adversary, only to find that he had slipped away from his line of sight as Pixy attacked him from behind. The Demon Lord immediately threw him over his shoulder as the both of them fell back towards the ground, but the sword attacks continued against one another.

"I didn't want to have to fight against you, you and I should be fighting together, but I guess this is where ideals split even brothers apart…" Pixy said over the radio.

"Your ideals are twisted just like this whole battle! This is going to end now Pixy!" Tsukune shot back at him. At this point, he could hardly ever be considered his brother, everything about his bond; his friendship was all a lie ever since he betrayed everyone. "I'm not the only one you hurt! You hurt Kurumu as well! I can't believe you'd do that to her! She loved you!"

"Kurumu…the succubus…" Pixy said as his voice stayed monotone, a slight bit of hesitation was shown but continued to duel it out with Tsukune as a heavy Spanish guitar riff set over the radio in the background as it settled into an epic instrumental worthy of a final battle. No one knew where the source of the music came from. It was almost as if this whole battle was a movie and the Round Table the grand stage. "My life is filled with regrets…it would have never worked, buddy…Natsume still haunts my dreams…that day shall forever play over and over in my head…That's why everyone must pay! GO TO HELL TSUKUNE! I'll join you there…"

There was no response from Tsukune on that as they both attempted to gain the upper hand on each other with their swords. Pixy attempted to impale the Demon Lord straight through with his zweihander only to have Tsukune pushed Pixy away in front of him.

"It's not over buddy…This is where it all starts. You know what I'm talking about, right?" Pixy said he got back to his feet as he summoned another destructive bright ball of light that destroyed a huge chunk of earth in front of the Demon Lord, barely staying out of the blast range as Pixy went right in for the attack once again. However this time, Tsukune caught on to this fact and sliced through Pixy's other shoulder as he winced in pain, blood now spurting out slightly.

Right then and there, the last remaining soulstone that Tsukune and his harem had been hunting for appeared right before their eyes as it launched up high into the air as it glowed a bright violet. The soulstone had been activated and armed and was set to explode as soon as it reached over the academy itself. Pixy had played his final trump card as the battle had seemingly entered the third and final act. Slowly Pixy got back up to his feet once again and uttered only two words to Tsukune.

"It's time…" Pixy said coldly.

"Damn! Confirmed launch of the soulstone!" Ruby yelled out as she flinched at the sight of the soulstone. Here, the girls plus Tsukune could find the one thing President George W. Bush, the previous President of Osea before Harling, he could never find: a weapon of mass destruction.

"Too bad buddy…This twisted game needs to be reset…" Pixy said as the soulstone launched overhead. "We'll start over from 'zero' with this soulstone and entrust the future to the next generation."

"Galm 1, listen up. We've completed analysis of Pixy's new sword. Codename: Morgan. He's protected by a psychic barrier from the sword itself. His only weak point is his chest area. You'll have to attack him head on. Go. Take down Pixy and destroy Morgan. If you defeat him, then the soulstone will be destroyed as well. You're the only one who can stop him." Ruby said. "Demon Lord of the Round Table…I pray for your success! We all are! Come back alive Tsukune!"

"Soulstone re-entry in four minutes! Hurry Tsukune!" Mizore yelled out, a departure from her usual calm demeanor.

"You and I are opposite sides of the same coin…" Pixy said as a dark blue psychic barrier surrounded most of his own body. "When we face each other, we can finally see our true selves…There may be a resemblance, but we never face the same direction."

Tsukune charged straight for Pixy, head on. This was going to end once and for all as Pixy did the same towards the Demon Lord. Galm versus Galm. Tsukune struck first, but Pixy's psychic barrier had deflected the blow but Pixy attempted to skewer him as he moved out of the way as he watched the steel of the zweihander gleam past his head.

"Now we find out who's number one!" Pixy yelled as he kicked Tsukune back but immediately he struck back, only to have the psychic barrier once again get in his way. Frustration began to set in for the Demon Lord. Immediately Tsukune summoned bolts of lightning all over the place as they converged in on Pixy from all directions. All of them had reached its target but all were deflected back in all directions as they hit the mountains that made up the Round Table itself. Various explosions went off at the mountains as boulders and rocks crumbled down towards the ground around the two of them. The two them locked swords once again.

Pixy attempted to slice through Tsukune with the zweihander, barely missing Tsukune's neck by a few inches as he bent backwards to avoid the slash itself. Quickly he shot back up, slashing away at Pixy, but only to be parried at every turn once again. Pixy's sword began to be engulfed by fire while Tsukune's by lightning. The slashes and strikes continued until they ended up at yet another deadlock.

"Looks like we've both still got what it takes." Pixy said.

Tsukune still said nothing back as his anger slowly consumed him as he summoned more lightning bolts all over the grounds, the earth seemingly shaking upon his fury. Again all of them converged on Pixy once more, but this time they targeted his sword.

"Fire away, coward!" Pixy yelled out to Tsukune as the lightning bolts drew closer. "COME ON!"

Time was ticking as the soulstone reached its zenith in the sky over the Round Table towards Youkai Academy itself. The lightning bolts converged upon Pixy's zweihander, forcing the sword itself to shatter into thousands upon thousands of pieces to the ground. Pixy's psychic barrier soon dissipated as he pulled out his old sword, and with a look of determination in his eyes he leapt high into the air. The Demon Lord followed suit as the two charged towards each other mid air. Just then, Tsukune was surrounded by a bright, glowing ball of golden light as wings seemed to appear behind him, helping him along as if he had the natural ability of flight. Seemingly, with just one swift strike, Tsukune's sword pierced right through Pixy's chest, then pulling his sword as the two passed one another. Pixy fell towards the ground a bloody mess as Tsukune's bright wings of light helped him glide along the sky and towards the ground near Pixy. He approached closer towards him but then looked back up towards the sky as the soulstone drew closer to them and exploded in mid-air, knocking both Pixy and Tsukune in opposite directions. The explosion itself from the soulstone detonation grew larger and larger until soon it consumed the entire sky and area itself. There was no way, everyone thought, that anyone could have survived that blast.

"TSUKUNE!" Inner Moka and everyone else yelled out as they spotted the destructive explosion right over the Round Table.

The bright light persisted for a few minutes until it finally dissipated. Somehow, miraculously, Tsukune survived the blast as he was left a bloody mess, his armor now in disarray and severely damaged. Slowly he removed his armor, only his pants in tact from that deadly detonation. Cuts, bruises, and blood covered his entire body as he painfully got back up, dropping his black winged helmet and his Blade of Razgriz on the ground as he felt his eyes well up, looking around for Pixy.

"PIXY!" he yelled out. There was no reply as he looked around frantically for his former best friend as his warm, salty tears streamed down from his eyes as he knelt down sobbing. His face was in the palms of his hands. He felt utterly lost, void of any happiness. He had vanquished the enemy, and stopped the soulstone detonation. The world was saved, but yet an overwhelming sense of sadness overtook him as he continued to sob as the realization of what he had just done sunk in.

"What…what was the point of all of this…what was the use of all of this fighting? All these battles? All the lives that are now lost and gone! I…I…" Tsukune muttered to himself as he cried as he shook violently, his fists pounding into the hard rocky ground. "I…killed him…I killed my own best friend…I…murdered him…I don't know what I was even fighting for…What was…all of this even for…"

Ruby attempted to listen through the heavy static left over by the soulstone detonation, to make out what was being said over the radio, but all she could do was make out a few words. She didn't even know if the voice belonged to Tsukune.

"Tsukune! Tsukune! Come in, over! Galm 1! Are you alright? Tsukune say something!" Ruby yelled.

"I'm…sorry…I have…nothing left to fight for…This is…where I go off on my own path…I'm sorry…" Tsukune said as he took the radio communicator in his hand and crushed it into pieces, tossing it away as static overtook the airwaves as Ruby's eyes widened as she looked over to Inner Moka, Mizore, and Kurumu in horror.

"He…He's…oh my god…" Ruby stammered out as everyone's eyes began to well up, even the cold vampire's.

"…He's gone…isn't he…" Mizore blurted out in tears as Kurumu broke down as well.

"Tsukune-san…Desu…" Yukari chimed in as she walked up to the group, seeing them all cry, her heart immediately sank as she began to tear up as well. "Oh no…"

"Tsukune-san won the day for us…the soulstone detonation was stopped from getting too close to the school, but…" Ruby said.

"Tsukune is my hero…Our hero…He…gave his life for us so that the rest of the world may live on…both worlds…He was always so selfless like this…That idiot! Why'd he have to go and die like that?" Inner Moka yelled out in anguish as she sobbed quite openly with the others but then clenched her fists. "…Mizore, Kurumu, Ruby, Yukari…let's…go recover his body…"

The others gloomily nodded as they all made their way into the entrance of the Round Table. Ruby then spotted PJ's dead, charred body as she sobbed again and gently scooped up his small form into her arms. Just then they spotted Pixy's sword stuck into the ground, but couldn't find Pixy himself anywhere. But then Mizore gasped in shock as she found Tsukune's Galm Team pin on the ground next to his destroyed armor and his winged helmet, but no Tsukune either. Both of them had mysteriously disappeared.

"Maybe the soulstone detonation was so strong it disintegrated Tsukune's flesh…" Ruby said between wiping her tears.

"…If that were the case, his armor would be gone as well…" Mizore said as Moka began to pick up the pieces of the Razgriz armor, and with every ounce of strength she had, she managed to lift Tsukune's winged helmet as well, but it felt like it weighed tons to her. Just then, a familiar voice chimed in over the radio, but it sounded very weakened.

"The Demon Lord…still lives…" the voice said. "Going back home to Belka…"

Deep down, Kurumu knew who the voice belonged to, and to this day, refused to speak about it…until she sent an email to a certain half-werewolf named Naota Nandaba. It had been some weeks later, everything had seemed normal again, except for the fact that Tsukune was no longer around. Though the girls believed in their hearts that he was missing, the headmaster and the rest of the student body believed him to be dead. As such, they went to work on erecting a bronze statue in Tsukune's honor to commemorate his sacrifice to save the school, the students, the faculty, and the rest of the world, both human and youkai. To everyone, it seemed weird that a human would be the best of their class, but a hero was still a hero in their minds. Though tolerance for humans didn't necessarily get any better, at least for Tsukune their hearts warmed up. Moka and Mizore looked upon the completed statue and looked upon the commemorative plaque. The entire area was filled with flowers and candles as they read the words inscribed upon the plaque.

"Tsukune Aono, 3rd Year Student. Though he was a human, he is Youkai Academy's greatest hero that it has ever known in its long history. The Demon Lord made the ultimate sacrifice for all of us, and the best we can do in return is live our lives to the fullest. That is his wish for all of us. Born July 11, 1994 – March 9, 2011"

Elsewhere, Kokoa left a bunch of flowers upon PJ's grave as she got back up to take her moment of silence as she began to tear up. She then felt a hand upon her shoulder and turned around to see PJ's cousin, Adrian James. She at first tensed up and prepared for battle as she commanded Batty to transform into a hammer.

"Hey, you're Kokoa, right? I'm PJ's cousin, Adrian. Nice to meet you finally, Miss Shuzen." Adrian said as he extended her hand out to her, cautiously putting Batty back down and shook his hand.

"I'm…sorry about PJ, Adrian…" Kokoa said, turning away.

"Yeah…I'm sorry too…My whole family is…While I fought my war, he fought his here. I'm really proud of him…" Adrian said as he sighed quietly. "I just wished he would have survived his…because you two would have made a nice couple…"

"W-What?" Kokoa said as she turned a beet red.

"PJ told me over the phone that he wanted to ask a certain strawberry out after he and Tsukune fought their final battle…" Adrian said as he smiled but then frowned once again. "But I guess it didn't work out that way…"

Kokoa began to tear up and cry once again as Adrian took her into his well-built arms, sighing quietly. He too, still felt immense sadness. PJ was still a young kid, and the favorite of the family, it was a huge loss for the James family back in Osea.

"I really liked him…I would have liked to have gotten to know him a bit better and…" Kokoa said between sobs. "…maybe I would have found a bloodmate in him…"

"I know…Anyway, I originally came here to ask the headmaster to exhume his casket to have him reburied back in the human world in Osea…" Kokoa immediately sobbed more as she shook her head no. "But, don't worry, I don't have any intention of doing that. This place is a beautiful place, and I want him to rest here in peace with all of his friends."

"Thank you, Adrian…" Kokoa said as she looked back towards PJ's headstone, sighing quietly.

Later that night, Moka snuck into the boy's dorm room and closed the door behind her. She flicked on the light switch and looked around her. His room was still as she had remembered it. She sighed as she spotted the picture with just him and Tsukune that they had taken a year ago in front of the school, and then looked to the picture of him and his best friend at the time, Alvin.

"Tsukune…where did you go…" Moka said to herself. Mizore then appeared from out of Tsukune's closet, not even really startling the vampire at all.

"…Can't sleep either?" Mizore said as she sucked upon her lollipop.

"How can I…He's been missing for weeks now…" Moka said as Kurumu and Yukari revealed themselves as well.

"I feel the same way, desu…" Yukari said sadly.

"I was going to sleep in his bed for tonight…I guess since we're all here; we might as well make it a sleep over." Moka said as everyone nodded and agreed.

"Moka-san…Will Tsukune-san ever come back? Desu…" Yukari asked as she clung onto Moka.

"I hope so, Yukari-chan…" Moka said as she gently ran her fingers through the little witch's hair. Meanwhile, back in the human world, Tsukune was back home in Tokyo. However, he had yet to go home to see his mother or cousin, and he wasn't planning on it either. He wanted to remain hidden from the rest of the world as he had felt like a lost soul now. Tsukune went towards the local cemetery where his father was buried as he knelt down at his father's headstone, sighing.

"Hey dad…It's been a while huh…I've been through a lot, and I'm not sure what direction I should be going in my life…Give me some guidance if you can…I really miss you pops…" Tsukune said as he took his moment of silence to utter a prayer and got back up; disappearing to places unknown.

Some months later, Tsukune resurfaced near the cold artic climates of the Kirwin Islands in Osea. With the help of the Oured Catholic diocese, and generous benefactors within the Osean government, he raised enough money to build a monastery as his headquarters for his own monastic order: The Knights of Razgriz. Since Tsukune and Pixy had utterly destroyed the Belkan Knights organization, this order of knights filled a significant need left vacant: to protect the human world from youkai incursion. Tsukune used this time to train and hone his powers and in turn, grew more powerful alongside his growing knightly order. By the end of that year, he had five hundred knights that were well-trained in the arts of sword and spear combat. Some of them had even developed special magic abilities, allowing them to hone elements of ice, fire, lightning, and light. In short, they were the modern day paladin. In some ways, Tsukune felt that at least he was fulfilling his purpose in life after all the horrific things he had to endure.

But Tsukune was so devoid of any emotion or feeling, and the distant look in his eyes gave away that fact easily. He walked out towards the balcony from his personal quarters that allowed him a beautiful view of the dark, but star-speckled night sky. Thoughts of that final battle haunted his mind like a ghost would torture a mortal soul. Betrayal, anger, rage surfaced to his mind, but then a sudden wave of sadness followed as he remembered Moka and the others that he had left behind. He was in every sense of the word, broken, emotionally and mentally. All the battles that he had fought in up to that didn't make any sense to him at all. And each time he had thought about it, he always failed to come up with a purpose for the entire war.

Many a night, he had last countless hours of sleep, eluding him like a prey hiding perfectly from a hunting lion. Why did countless thousands upon thousands of innocents have to die in the soulstone detonations? Why did PJ have to die at the hands of Pixy of all people? And why did he have to kill his former best friend? These answers seemingly hid themselves amongst the tempests of time. However his thoughts were broken by an half-sword brethren (a knight in training) who held a candle as he approached Tsukune, the Grand Master.

"Master, why aren't you in bed? It's late…" The lower rank asked.

"I can't seem to find sleep anymore…" Tsukune said.

"Something to drink perhaps? A glass of water? Maybe a glass of red wine will help ease your troubles, my lord."

"I'll be fine half-brother, just go to bed." Tsukune said as he dismissed him, sighing as he looked up towards the stars. He looked to his sword as he unsheathed it, inspecting the blades features. The sword itself must have seen the blood of every possible youkai throughout his battles against Fairy Tale, he surmised. As he concentrated he swung his blade as a trailing of ice followed, again he swung as a trail of blazing fire followed, swinging again as lightning, and then divine light. He was Grand Master for more reasons than just being the founder of the order; he was the most powerful knight of them all. His uniform was the same as his other full-brethren however; adamantium chainmail with a black mantle with a white cross; similar to the Knights of St. John or the Hospitaller Knights. Tsukune's battle-helm was different however in that his helmet was molded into something similar to his old Razgriz helm and as well possessed the powerful stormcaster gloves that allowed him deal more damage than most.

As he put his sword back into its sheath, he pulled out his phone and went through his daily planner and saw that in a few days he would have to report to the Vatican as he was summoned by Pope Benedict XVI himself. He sighed quietly as he dreaded most of these meetings since they were usually just boring affairs with emphasis on ceremony and tradition. Religion was also a peculiar thing to Tsukune as he never really thought much about it in previous years. But after receiving help from the Catholic Church, he decided to convert to Catholicism. There were even various monks and priests that helped administer the knightly order's spiritual needs. However he could never really figure out if he actually believed in God, or in religion at all. After all, if God truly existed, why would he let such horrible things happen to people? Why did he force him through all of those battles and see so many innocents die at the hands of a destructive weapon? It was then that another half-sword brother entered the room with a scroll in his hand. Tsukune carefully opened it and was informed that all assets of the remaining Belkan Knights had been seized and place under their control along with several Belkan crossbowmen that had been employed under Kupochenko. Definitely good news for Tsukune. However, right below it was something not as good, he also found out that there had been several incursions into the human world that needed to be dealt with in swift manner. Worse yet, there simply weren't enough knights to go around. There were only around five hundred battle-ready knights, and another three hundred half-brethren still in the midst of training, hardly battle-ready at all. Tsukune needed a lot of help, and fast, but recruiting was hard enough as it was. Just then, it seemed that his plea for help would be answered as a cloaked man in the shadows appeared as Tsukune turned around, his face in total and utter shock…

To Be Continued…


Well, this is the last chapter, aside from the upcoming epilogue, hope you all enjoyed it! Please review! Thank you!