-Disclaimer-

Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha's anime is licensed by Geneon Entertainment; its studio is Seven Arcs. Anime is directed by Akiyuki Shinbo. The manga is illustrated by Koji Hasegawa. Characters, Locations, and other intellectual property from the Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha universe is to be attributed to the above as warranted.

Fan-Original content includes:

Characters Attributed to Rimshooter: Unnamed Girl. Hinode Seitsu.

Characters Attributed to Taeniaea: Iriai, and Hiruko Seitsu.

Locations Attributed to Rimshooter: District III, District III Hospital

Factions Attributed to Rimshooter: Unknown Faction

Concepts, Events, and Items Attributed to Rimshooter: Red Sky Incident

Concepts, Events, and Items to Taeniaea: Memory of Dawn, and Hope for Dawn.

...And several other things that we don't really care about enough to mention, which brings us to:

Rimshooter's Note: Right, so Hime and I are at it again. Even while we're working on Hidden in the Dark Together (something I've only really started helping her with recently... Last month or the month before, I think?), we're simultaneously writing this story, which has been around since... -Checks Calendar- ...October of 2010. Production in it has only really become consistent recently, so don't expect us to have an enormous pile of material to draw from... we don't. This is a sort of muse escape; when we're at an impasse with Hidden in the Dark's chapters, we write this one's. Technically speaking, this story is a crossover but the other work in question is unpublished... well, part of it is on my account on fictionpress, but I digress. This takes place after StrikerS; don't expect any plot-lines that come after StrikerS ends to make an appearance. Originally there weren't any canon characters, so we're doing our best to meld them in... Have a nice read. Don't get disappointed... and please, for the sake of not being befriended, REVIEW CONSTRUCTIVELY.

Taeniaea's Note: -Nods- Unless you want Nanoha or one of our characters to befriend you... -Sees a flaming red figure rushing at her from the horizon.- ...Something like that! -Runs-

(Rimshooter bows before teleporting next to Taeniaea and running alongside her for a few seconds until she notices him, and then promptly grabs her arm and teleports elsewhere as the fire melts the camera, cutting off the feed.)


Neyr Deus

-Story of the Four Birds-

Past to Present One: Red Sky Incident


-May 13, 0077: 1200 Hours-

-Subaru

Fire licked at Subaru's feet as she raced through the streets of southern Cranaagan. Above, whatever strange particles the wide-area anti-magic field yielded drifted down like snow. The girl passed countless unmoving bodies, riddled with holes, unrecognizably charred, or both. They were already dead, but Subaru held onto the hope there was still someone left she could save. Some floating drones about the size of Subaru's torso were dispatched with a pair of punches from her Revolver Knuckle as she continued through. It was a vision of hell. The screams had long since stopped, and the relief teams had failed to save those civilians closest to the epicenter of the assault. Subaru was still certain that someone else had survived. Someone else had to have survived. Too many were already dead.

She turned a corner and paused. There, in front of a burning warehouse, eyes peering blankly out of a pile of ruined drone parts and cybernetics, was a survivor. "Stay still, I'll get you out!" Subaru shouted, immediately rushing over and digging through the various pieces of mechanics, now completely unrecognizable. It wasn't long before she could make out a head, covered in hair blue as Subaru's own, but slightly lighter. Encouraged, Subaru dug faster and soon a small girl, around Vivio's age, tumbled out of the pile. Hastily, Subaru checked her for injuries. Finding none, the teen lifted the small girl and raced out of the area.


-At the Same Time

-Fate

Like Subaru, Fate was also searching for survivors. Elsewhere the other members of Riot Force Six, having converged in this area for a reunion, were searching for more survivors.

'Mass based weapons.' Fate thought as the cleaved a drone that had opened fire on her in half, not pausing in her haste. 'I can see why they're banned now...' Fate's train of thought was cut short when she heard a small cry. Quickly, she rushed to it, finding a girl in the middle of a street, under the body of someone who had sheltered her. Fate moved to assist her, and time seemed to slow down as a masked android materialized next to the girl, left arm elongated into a blade. The android had the girl in its arms before Fate could do anything, and just as quickly it ran the child through in a horrid display of gore. For a moment, Fate was stunned... and then she was enraged, rushing the android as it tossed the girl aside. Just as Fate swung at it, the android was gone. In vain, Fate checked the girl's body to see if it could be saved. The girl's eyes, wide with fright and dulled by death, were a rich shade of violet, and her hair, long and tangled, was black. As several more drones arrived, Fate turned from the girl's silent, pleading expression and faced them.


-Simultaneously

-District III Hospital

The hospital was swamped with survivors from the incident nearby in addition to the original patients. Even as medics and volunteers rushed to aid the staff. Outside a sizable contingent of Bureau agents defended the hospital from drones. In one of the rooms, the doctor's were having particular trouble with one of the original patients who was recovering from severe physical trauma. She was a small girl, with violet eyes, and she was struggling heroically to break the casts on her arms and leg and escape the hospital, shouting about her twin and needing to go save her. The staff would have pitied her if she wasn't so hard to keep bound. Straps didn't do anything. Binding spells were shaken off in a few seconds as, apparently, the girl knew a decline-type spell.

That was when one of the military doctors, Shamal, arrived. She cast a binding spell and, before it could be shaken off, injected a powerful sedative into the girl. As the girl finally quieted down and drifted into unconsciousness, if she was ever fully conscious at all, and turned to the staff present, "We don't have any time to waste. Go tend to the other patients while I make sure she doesn't wake up any time soon." The staff nodded and left, leaving Shamal alone with the girl. The Knight of the Lake place a hand on the girl's forehead, brushing some of her jet-black hair aside and marveling at her. "Your sister is fortunate to have you." She said, before setting the IV drip to include a more minor sedative to keep the girl asleep and leaving.


-Riot Force Six Rendezvous Point

After the last of the drones had been dealt with and the fires put out, the remainders of Riot Force Six met up in front of Long Arch, relatively far away from the site of the Incident, but still close enough that you could see the columns of smoke rising in the distance. Subaru rolled up, noting everyone was present but Shamal, who was still at the hospital, and Fate, was present. "Who's this?" Nanoha asked with a tense smile, gesturing to the small girl Subaru was giving a piggy-back ride. "I don't know. She won't let go, and she won't say anything... She just stares off into space when she's not looking at me... Where's Fate?"

Right on cue, Fate showed up, her face an expressionless mask as her feet touched the ground. "Fate!" Nanoha called, before losing her enthusiasm as concern washed over her face, "What happened?"

All at once Fate's mask crumbled and she fell into Nanoha's waiting arms. "I couldn't save her..." The blonde whispered, "She was right there..."

"...Right there..." The enforcer repeated.


-1230 Hours-

-Within Long Arch

It had taken a lot of effort, but Fate had finally calmed down enough to explain what had traumatized her so.

"...After I dealt with the drones, when I turned around... her body wasn't even there anymore." Fate's voice was markedly soft and filled with a notable hint of aggression... It didn't take a genius to figure out who that was for.

"Don't worry too much Fate-chan, We'll catch the culprits." Nanoha assured her friend.

"We should check up with Shamal." Hayate proposed.

All around, the former members of Riot Force Six nodded, though Subaru had a little difficulty given the girl attached to her back. The various mages gathered had all attempted to remove her one way or another but had been met with no success. And so Subaru continued to carry the girl as they headed off to the hospital.


-District III Hospital

The hospital was still chaotic, but had grown more organized now that the influx of patients had slowed down. The strikers split up upon arriving, going to help out where they could, with the exception of Nanoha, Fate, Hayate, and Subaru, who hoped Shamal would be able to help her with the girl, who had yet to receive any sort of attention beyond Subaru's rescue. Hayate pulled a nurse aside, asking where they could find Shamal, and was directed to a room on the seventeenth floor. "She's watching a patient that's been giving us problems... The girl keeps trying to get up and leave, even though the only thing she can move properly is her left leg.

Upon exiting the elevator, the group's ears was met with a verbal argument clearly audible from here. "Let me out! I need to help her!" A small girl shouted.

"You're not going anywhere until your limbs are healed, young lady." Came Shamal's voice in response. Following the argument, they saw Shamal standing over a bed housing a heavily bandaged girl. All limbs save her left leg were in casts, and she was not only strapped to the bed, but held in place by one of Shamal's binding spells. Were it not for the previous Incident, the four of them would have seat-dropped at the sight.

"Having trouble Shamal?" Hayate asked.

Shamal didn't turn around when she responded, "Yes, actually, I am... Somehow, the drugs I was using to sedate her before aren't having any effect anymore and she keeps breaking the straps, and even my Commandment Chain, and everything else I've used to keep her in place. She just won't sit still."

It was Nanoha's turn to speak, "How is she breaking out with three of her limbs in casts?"

"I have no idea." The knight of the lake replied exasperatedly, "Raw willpower, I'd guess. Whatever the reason, I'm still working on a way to keep her still, she's hysterical. She's completely tuned me and everyone else who comes by out." As she spoke, the barrier bind imprisoning the girl shattered, only to be replaced an instant later. "Sooner or later she's going to wear herself out." And, on cue, the girl finally burned her energy out and entered into a restless sleep. Subaru felt the girl on her back shift and glanced out of the corner of her eye to see that her charge was now staring at the girl resting fitfully on the bed. "Well," Shamal spoke, turning around, "now that she's finally settled down..." It was at that moment the doctor noticed the stony-faced girl on Subaru's back and the pleading expression said striker had.

"Could you take a look at this one? We haven't been able to get her off me since I first rescued her..." As said this, the girl's blank stare shifted to Shamal, who stiffened slightly as their eyes met, before shaking it off and approaching Subaru.

"Of course," the healer replied, stepping beside Subaru. "Would you get off?" She asked, despite everyone present's warnings that the girl would ignore her. To their surprise, after staring at Shamal a moment, the strange girl acquiesced and allowed Subaru to put her down, continuing to stare up into Shamal's eyes as she did so. "Thank you." The blond said as she took the girl's hand, and, upon meeting no resistance, led her over to the wall where another bed was pulled out, opposite the other patient's. The girl was then lifted and placed into the bed for Shamal to check over. It wasn't a long process.

"She doesn't appear to have any exterior wounds..." The healer informed as she inspected the girl, "...or interior, for that matter." Shamal stood up as she continued, "I can't see anything wrong with her, other than whatever mental trauma she suffered during the incident. Far as I can tell, she's perfectly aware of everything that's going on, as demonstrated by her giving everything she sees a cursory inspection." At this, Shamal gestured to where the blue-haired girl was glancing at a nearby pulse-reader, and then at the closed windows.

"So... she's fine?" Subaru asked, only for Shamal to shake her head.

"Physically, yes. Magically... it seems that way, but the scan isn't finished. Mentally, there's something terribly wrong with her. She may be aware of her surroundings, but she's not paying much attention to anything unless it's drawn... For instance, here I am talking about her and yet..." Shamal gestured to the girl in question again, showing that she was now staring at the ceiling. "I'm not a psychiatrist, so there's not much I can do to help here, even with my years of experience."

Those gathered nodded, already aware of the venerable, even if she didn't seem that way, knight's limitations. "I'll make a notice for her to try and get her the attention she needs, but considering how swamped we are, I don't know if it'll go through any time soon." Shamal continued as she walked over to the other patient, pulling back the curtain to adjust the girl's IV drip and fix the straps that had been binding her. As she did, Fate stiffened.

"She looks just like her." The enforcer spoke, garnering everyone's attention.

"Like who?" Shamal asked.

Fate took a moment to steady herself as she replied, "Like the girl I couldn't save."

"That's because it was her twin..." Everyone turned to the unfamiliar voice to find a girl around Subaru's age standing in the doorway. She looked like an older version of the girl in the hospital bed.

"And you're...?" Shamal started.

"Her older sister, Hinode." The newcomer finished, walking over to the bed and placing a pair of gems on the tray next to the girl. "I was coming to deliver her device to her, I just finished it today... Her sister's too, but..." Hinode trailed off, and no one needed to know what she was about to say.

"How do you know it's your younger sister Fate was talking about?" Nanoha asked.

Hinode shrugged, "...I couldn't find little Ren and Fate here recognizes Iri."

"Couldn't find her?" Subaru asked.

"I went looking for Ren first. After all, Iri's hospitalized... Ren wasn't... She wouldn't stay stationary. Around this time she would've probably been on her way to visit Iri... I searched the route between here and our home several times, as well as all the places she would've run to..." Hinode didn't look like she wanted to continue, and no one wanted to press her. "I think Iri would want the device her sister never had... I've got other things to do, there's so much happening right now..." Hinode looked down at Iri sadly, waving her hands over the gems. "Watch over her, Memory of Dawn, Hope for Dawn..."

"It was nice making your acquaintance, Aces, Shamal. I'll be back when things settle down." With that, the elder sister left. As Hinode vanished down the hall, Reia's scan signaled it was done. Subaru turned from the door to Shamal, who was standing at the station adjacent the as yet still unnamed girl's bed.

"This is... odd." Shamal spoke, prompting several curious stares, "It's like I'm looking at you, Nanoha, but... Her linker core is enormous for someone her age, but I can only see part of it. The rest of it is sealed off by some sort of seal on her forehead."

"Limiters?" Hayate suggested, only for Shamal to shake her head.

"I can see through limiters – they block the channeling of magic, but this... it's suppressing the magic itself."

"How much?" Fate asked quietly.

Shamal turned to her as the girl on the bed stared at her curiously, "Extensively... I think this girl has just as much magical potential as Nanoha would if her Linker Core hadn't been crippled... at least."

"That's... scary." Subaru inserted, breaking the silence that had followed Shamal's statement.

"So," Nanoha said, "We're looking at a future ace, if she goes into the Armed Forces."

"Indeed." Shamal said, turning to Iri, who continued to lay on her bed in a fitful sleep, "and I think this one has just about as much potential. It felt like I was dealing with you." There was a small thumping noise as, apparently, the unnamed girl grew tired of staying in place and had determined there was no longer a reason to do so. As all heads turned to her in unison, the girl walked over to Subaru and looked at her expectantly, prompting Subaru to scratch the back of her head nervously.

"Only until we reach the orphanage, okay?" Subaru spoke, garnering a nod, before turning to Shamal, "She can leave, right?" Shamal nodded, and as Subaru set off for the orphanage the Aces' meeting broke up impromptu as they each went their separate ways, remembering something to do or finding something in the absence of the former.


Character Profiles

Iriai Seitsu (Setting of the Sun + Love – Spirit + Steal)

Nickname: Iri

Age: 8

Birth Date: May 14, 0069

Eye Color: Pale Violet

Hair Color: Jet Black

Hair Style:: Medium length, reaching her chin.

Talents: Concentration, Physical Arts, Balance Exercises, Sketching

Living Relatives: Hinode Seitsu, Elder Sister – Eight Years Difference

ND

Hinode Seitsu (Sunrise – Spirit + Steal)

Nickname: Hino (Light + Field)

Age: 16

Birth Date: April 3, 0061

Eye Color: Dark Violet

Hair Color: Jet Black

Hair Style: Long, held bound in a braid that reaches her mid-back with the exception of a pair of short bangs that frame her face, reaching the bottom of her eyes in length.

Talents: Concentration, Physical Arts, Physical Exercises and Magical Exercises, Painting

Living Relatives: Iriai Seitsu, Younger Sister – Eight Years Difference

ND

Hiruko Seitsu (Daytime + Child – Spirit + Steal)

Nickname: Ren (Company)

Age: 8 (Deceased)

Birth Date: May 14, 0069

Death Date: May 14, 0077

Eye Color: Vibrant Violet

Hair Color: Jet black.

Hair Style: Medium length, reaching her chin.

Talents: Reading, Remembering, Mental and Magical Exercises

Living Relatives: Iriai Seitsu, Twin Sister – One Minute Difference, Hinode Seitsu, Elder Sister – Eight Years Difference