Chapter 1: The Prologue, naturally

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto, One Piece, Inuyasha, Bleach, Soul Eater, -Man, Fairy Tail, Katekyo Hitman Reborn!, Fullmetal Alchemist, Negima! Magister Negi Magi, or any other previously licensed book, show, or movie. The only things that I do own are my ideas and my original characters.

Author's Note: Welcome readers one and all to my fanfiction. My name (as far as you know) is Xomniac, and I am an amateur writer.

For years now I have been fantasizing about this story, and now I have summoned up the courage to lay my dreams bare before the world. This is the first story I have ever written, and most likely it will be the last (or maybe not, but we'll see, we'll see.) Nonetheless, I would appreciate it if you would all leave me with as much advice and as many comments and/or suggestions as you can.

Before I begin, I would like to thank my beta-author HTM for helping me muster the courage to do this and for being a very helpful partner in this story's development; I would also like to thank my mother Leslie and my step-father Leo for being so supportive of my story.

Anyway, without further ado, I ask that you perform the three simple tasks that all authors on this website want their readers to do:

READ! REVIEW! ENJOY!

Ever since the beginning of all existence, as long as there has been sentient life in the multiverse, throughout every single calamity, disaster, or tremendous upheaval of the 'natural order', the one sole constant in it all has been conflict. War, genocide, disagreement, all of these and more have been around since anything ever existed. And all of these conflicts can, one way or another, be boiled down to two things: Good and Evil.

No matter the event, no matter the time or place, these two forces have always existed, and have always opposed each other on every front. Though the line between them may stretch, and at times become nearly indiscernible, it is forever present, forever separating the two into opposing factions.

The war between Good and Evil, forever present yet most often invisible to the naked eye, has raged ceaselessly for as long as there have been soldiers to fight it. And throughout this invisible war, there have been representatives of both sides, those who bear the standards of their factions and ride to battle.

There have been many soldiers, many societies and gatherings and organizations that have worked for either side. This story is about the greatest supporters of Good that have ever existed. This story tells of the greatest generation that this order of justice has ever known.

Each member of this generation has their own reason for fighting in a war that they most likely will never see the conclusion of.

Some fight because of events outside their control…

In the middle of the night, in a large village hidden inside a forest in a destitute apartment, a pair of blue eyes snapped open, shock at waking up clearly evident within them.

The owner of the eyes sat up suddenly, arms flailing, gasping for breath. When he finally calmed down, he was sitting up in bed panting heavily, hand on his chest feeling his heart pound. After calming down, the boy slowly reached up and slid his nightcap off his head, revealing a spiky mane of blond hair. He was a young kid, only around 16 years old, his most defining features being the three whisker marks on each cheek. This boy was Naruto Uzumaki.

"What the hell was that?" Naruto murmured to himself. Looking outside, the blond noticed that it was still night-time. Moaning, he determined that there was no way he was possibly going to get back to sleep with the way he was feeling.

"Well, if I can't sleep, might as well eat," Naruto said to with that, he slowly got out of bed and wandered towards the apartment's kitchen. Once there, he took an unopened cup of ramen out of a cupboard and set the water to boil.

His waking task accomplished, he slumped into a nearby chair and rested his face in his hands, contemplating what had happened earlier. 'Seriously, just what the hell happened? One second I'm fast asleep, next I get some sort of…feeling that wakes me up. What the hell?'

Glancing up from his hands, he noticed something illuminated by the moonlight. Smiling, he got up and walked over to pick it up. He then headed to the window so that he could see it better.

It was a photograph showing four figures; standing on the right was a short blond kid with blue eyes, around 12 years old. He was wearing an orange jumpsuit and had a headband with a metal plate that had a symbol shaped like a leaf engraved on it. He was scowling at the person on the left hand side of the photo.

The boy the younger Naruto was glaring at was a short kid with black hair, only 12 years old. He was wearing a blue shirt and a headband similar to the blonde's. He was glaring at the camera, looking like he wanted to be absolutely anywhere but there.

Standing between the two boys, seemingly oblivious to the negative emotions that they were giving off, was a young girl with shockingly pink hair. She was wearing a red dress and was using a headband as a makeshift hair tie. Her eyes were closed as she smiled happily.

Standing tall above them was an older man. He was wearing a green flak vest and a mask that covered the lower half of his face and a headband that covered his left eye, leaving only his right eye visible. Despite looking to be in his late twenties, he had grey hair that somehow seemed to spike out above his head. He was ruffling the hair of the two boys, most likely adding to their discontent.

Naruto smiled while looking at the picture, blissfully reminiscing. "Yup," he mused to himself, "Those were the good old days."

Slowly, he raised his eyes and peered out the window and out towards the night sky. As the stars reflected in his eyes, his smile slowly shrank, and a single, simple, unprovoked thought ran through his head.

Just then, Naruto heard a familiar plastic click behind him. His smile immediately jumped back onto his face. "Water's ready!" he quietly exclaimed to himself. He turned around and headed back inside to prepare the final stages of ramen development. But not even the joys of ramen could dampen the worry he felt gnawing in his gut.

Some fight to find those they have lost…

It was an ordinary night at Mahora Academy.

Well, if you could call an academy filled with mages, half-demons, a robot and a shinso vampire normal. In any case, by their standards, it was an average, run-of-the-mill night.

At least, it was for anyone who wasn't an 11 year old mage/teacher with red hair that had recently saved the Magical World from total exposure and was planning a trip, or expedition, or quest, to the Magical World with the members of his class of Japanese high school girls.

No, for Negi Springfield, tonight was far from an ordinary night. His first clue was when he woke up in the middle of it for apparently no good reason, covered in sweat and panting as though he'd ran a marathon.

'Wha-what on earth was that?'thought Negi desperately. He glanced around the room he shared with his students and quickly extended his senses. 'No significant magical signature nearby, at least no foreign ones, and I don't think I had a dream, so,' Negi bowed his head and furrowed his brow, thinking hard. 'What woke me up?'

Negi turned his head and looked out the window towards the night. 'The last time I felt anything even similar to this was right before the festival. But that was tiny, minuscule, just a passing shiver. Whatever that was, it can only mean one thing. Something big is on the way.'

He felt some movement right next to him. Turning his head, he saw his red haired bunk-mate and pactio-partner Asuna lazily raise her head from her pillow, rubbing the sleep from her eyes. "Hey, everything alright, brat?" she mumbled.

Negi smiled at her sleepy expression. "Don't worry Asuna, I just had a bad dream is all, go back to sleep."

Murmuring her confirmation, she lowered her head and closed her eyes. When he heard her (relatively) light snoring, Negi turned back to the window, renewed confidence ablaze in his eyes. 'Whatever it is,' he thought 'I will beat it, I will protect my students, I swear!'

As he stared out the window, he watched the stars. One thought flashed quickly through his mind. He blinked in confusion but dismissed it as unimportant. Shaking his head to clear his thoughts, he turned around and lied down, snuggling into Asuna and getting ready to doze off in the nice, warm-

"GET THE HELL OUT OF MY BED YOU LITTLE PERVERT!" CRASH! BANG! "OUCH!"

Or the floor, the floor was good. His pooling blood certainly helped soften it. And thanks to what he felt was a concussion, he barely even felt a thing.

Yes, just another ordinary night in Mahora Academy.

Some fight because it is the only path they have known their whole lives…

In the middle of the state of Nevada, there is a desert. In the middle of that desert is a huge city, filled with white buildings with red roofs piling on top of one another, forming a sort of pyramid.

In the middle of this city, standing above all other buildings, is an extravagant structure, at least a hundred feet tall, cartoonish white skulls emblazoned on the walls, with towering spires, three black orbs floating above it, and four gargantuan, never-melting candles sticking out of the corners.

This is the Death Weapon Meister Academy. This is the DWMA.

Less than a mile from the academy is a small apartment, home to an albino punk with shark-teeth and the ability to transform into a scythe, a blonde girl with pigtails who was the punk's partner, and a cat with ridiculous amounts of magical power and the ability to turn into a busty black haired beauty.

This was the home of Soul Eater Evans, Maka Albarn, and Blair the witch cat.

And it was in this home that Maka woke up, sweating and breathing heavily, hair undone and framing her head. She calmed down slightly and looked around her room, looking for whatever could have possibly woken her up. Feeling a weight on her lap, she looked down and saw a black cat wearing a witch's hat curled up in it, sleeping soundly.

Finally calm again, she let loose a breath she hadn't known she'd been holding and fell back on her bed, her thoughts in turmoil. 'What was that? There aren't any souls nearby, and Blair didn't wake up, so what…?'

Sighing in exasperation, the blond sat up again. "I need a drink," she mumbled to herself. Gently, Maka lifted Blair from her lap, got out of bed and headed for the kitchen.

She opened the fridge and leaned down, checking what was available. Judging from the blue mold growing on some of the things in there, the prospects were not good. Sighing, Maka made a mental note to make a food run the next day and reached into the fridge for the milk.

"Hey."

Maka quickly whipped around to face her would-be aggressor, performing what she considered to be the most logical course of action given the situation.

"MAKA CHOP!" SMACK! "OW!"

Said course being to apply a hard-cover edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica to the aforementioned aggressor's skull.

The aggressor lay on the ground nursing a newly formed lump that was poking through his white hair. 'Wait, white hair?'

"Soul! What do you think you're doing, scaring me like that?!" Maka admonished.

The albino weapon stood up, groaning from the pain. "I thought that I was going to ask my meister why she was digging through our fridge this late at night. What the hell Maka, you didn't have to hit me!"

Maka huffed in annoyance. "Yeah well, you didn't have to sneak up on me!"

Soul sighed. "So uncool..."

He raised an eyebrow at the blond. "My question still stands though. What are you doing up this late?"

Maka hesitated before she rebuked. "Y-yeah well… I could ask the same of you!"

Soul sighed at his meister's pig-headedness. "I got some sort of… feeling, while I was asleep. It was so strong that it shocked me awake."

Maka's eyes widened before she looked down. "That's what happened to me to."

Soul blinked at her in shock before he pressed his hand to his forehead and sighed exasperatedly. "Now that's really uncool…"

He watched as Maka slowly walked towards the nearby window and leaned on the sill, looking out towards the stars and the moon. He stood there for a few moments before he joined her.

"Soul… what do you think it means?" Maka asked in a whisper. Soul glanced at her before reverting his gaze to the ever-mocking moon.

"I dunno. It felt powerful." Maka's shoulders slumped. "But…" When she looked towards him, he clapped one of his hands on her shoulder and smiled his usual arrogant, shark-like smile. "Whatever it is, we'll beat it together, just like always," he stated confidently.

Maka stared at him for a few moments before she returned a small smile. "Yeah," She looked towards the stars again. "Together."

They stared at the stars for a few moments longer, a small thought crossing their minds almost simultaneously.

Blinking in confusion, Soul turned towards an equally confused Maka. "Hey, did you…"

"Y-yeah," She stuttered. "For a few seconds, I was sure that…"

They stared at each other for a minute before Maka turned around abruptly and started walking away. "W-well, goodnight then."

"Yeah, you too."

And thus they headed back to their respective beds and fell back to sleep, unaware of the greater events in motion.

Some fight because of the scars of the past…

It was midnight on a small island in the middle of a body of water. On this island, near the northern tip, stood a grand church of immense size. This was the Headquarters of the Eastern European Branch of the Black Order. This was a home of exorcists.

Specifically, it was home to a short, white-haired exorcist that had a curse on his left eye, and a weapon in his left arm. This was the home of Allen Walker, who had recently woken up in a slight panic, looking around his small, cell-like room like a cornered animal.

"What was that?" Allen asked himself. Seeing that he was alone, Allen calmed down a bit, although not by much. He put his back against the wall behind his bed, and shadowed his eyes with his left arm while he attempted to collect his thoughts.

'Okay, what just happened? I was sleeping, I know that much, but then it's like I got some sort of… premonition. Sure, I've gotten them before, like moments before I saw the Level 4 egg, but compared to this…'

Allen was broken out of his train of thoughts by a sudden weight dropping on his head. Smiling, he reached up and held the object out in front of him. "Oh hey Tim, sorry, did I scare you?"

The little golem flew up and head-butted Allen a few times. Allen raised his hands in surrender. "Okay, okay, I'm sorry, it won't happen again."'I hope,' he grimly added in his head.

Accepting the apology, Timcanpy settled down in Allen's lap, who noticed that the golden ball was shivering slightly. "What's wrong Tim? Were you scared for me?" Tim nodded. Allen's face softened. "You didn't want to lose me like Master, huh?" More nodding, this time with a frantic edge to it. "Don't worry Tim, I'm not going anywhere."

Sighing, Allen turned his gaze on his left hand. 'Or am I? Look at what's happened. First I find out that I can fly an ancient ship through space using a piano, then the Order gets attacked by Akuma and a Level 4, I find out there's a Noah inside of me, and Master goes and gets himself killed. With the rate things have been changing lately, anything could happen.'

Suddenly, a series of faces flashed through his mind; a woman with black hair and dark rings under her eyes, a younger woman with short black hair and glowing boots, an older looking teen with a sword and a long black ponytail, and a tall black man wearing headphones. There was also a teen with red hair and an eye-patch, a short old man who resembled a panda, and a tall man with a shock of white hair and fangs.

Allen looked out the window, smiling contentedly while he thought about his friends. 'Well, whatever the case might be, I know that together, there is no way in hell we can possibly lose,' he optimistically thought.

As he watched the stars in the sky, a thought flashed across Allen's mind. Its implications made Allen shiver. 'Now there's a scary thought, almost as bad as Master getting drunk and going to that Las Vegas place.'

As Allen considered what that would be like, his face became increasingly haunted, until he looked downright horrified.

'On second thought, NOTHING could be as bad as that!'

Quickly lying back down in an attempt to escape the terrifying images, Allen promptly fell asleep. Little did he know, his last waking thoughts were about to be proven wrong.

Some fight to fulfil their wildest dreams…

It was a quiet night on an island in the middle of the ocean. An island that cycled through 48 separate seasons, populated with over 500 of the most dangerous animals in the world, and was situated one of the most dangerous strips of ocean in the world.

Well, 'quiet' might not have been the most accurate description, considering how the air was filled with roars, whines, yips and caws from many of the various animals; as well as the rumblings of varying volcanoes and waterfalls.

"Peaceful" wouldn't fit either, seeing how many of the animals were calling out either in pain, defiance, victory, or a combination of all three. Average! That was the word; it was an average, ordinary, blood-and-battle-filled night.

At least, it was for most things on the island. For one young, toned, scarred, black haired pirate named Monkey D. Luffy, it was not an average night. Now, most people might call Luffy dim, and they would be correct in that description; for the most part anyway. But even an idiot like him understood that something was up when he suddenly woke up out of the blue for no apparent reason.

Luffy blinked a few times in confusion as he breathed heavily. "Whoa, what was that?!" he asked himself. He quickly scanned the clearing he had been sleeping in. Nothing had changed; Rayleigh was snoring against a nearby rock, the creatures he had befriended were still sleeping behind him and the piles of skeletons from animals he had hunted and subsequently eaten (read: devoured) lay undisturbed.

Luffy tilted his head in confusion and crossed his arms across his chest. "OK, so it wasn't any of the animals, and I wasn't having a dream. I did get this weird feeling though, but what could it have meant?" Luffy closed his eyes and bit his lip as he racked his brains for what could have happened. Suddenly his eyes snapped open and he pounded his fist into his palm, grinning like an idiot. "I know! It was a mystery feeling!"

He maintained his position for a few moments before he slumped down. "No, that's stupid." He quickly cheered up and got to his feet. "Ah well, if I can't sleep, might as well eat." And with that, he walked off into the woods.

About a half hour later, he walked back out, easily dragging the carcass of a gargantuan rhinoceros behind him. Luffy then dropped the body and rekindled the camp fire that had gone out last night. However, instead of tearing into the sweet, delicious, succulent meat like he normally would have, Luffy stared silently into the flames, deep in his thoughts, as unbelievable as that may seem.

'I've been on this island for around a year and a half now...I wonder how everyone else is doing.' He mused to himself. 'I bet that they've all gotten really strong, like me! Zoro, Nami, Usopp, Sanji, Chopper, Robin, Franky, Brook… I hope they're all right. The stuff on this island, it's only a taste of what's in the New World; if we'd faced things this strong back then, we'd have been torn apart!' Luffy winced as he tenderly fingered an X-shaped scar on his chest. 'I'm living proof of that…'

Luffy stared into the fire a little longer before he slapped both sides of his head simultaneously. "Gah, what am I thinking?! Of course we're stronger, I know it! We're gonna beat everyone in our way! We're not gonna lose again!" He shot to his feet and pointed his fists to the sky, shouting "YOU HEAR THAT WORLD? I'M GONNA BE KING OF THE PIRATES!"

When Luffy finished, he maintained his pose, panting heavily. As he watched the night sky, a thought flashed through his head unbidden. Luffy blinked before grinning maniacally. "Now THAT sounds interesting!"

He stood there, grinning at the sky for a short while; until a rock hit him in the head.

"Shut up and go to sleep you idiot."

"Sorry Rayleigh!"

Some fight in defiance of the fate handed to them…

Sengoku: a period in Japan's history renowned as a time of political and social upheaval; known as the "Age of the Country at War", it was one of the most bloody eras in Japan.

However, there is an untold side to the Sengoku Period.

It was also a time filled with magic, where demons ran rampant across the countryside, terrorizing farmers and nobles alike. Nothing was sacred to them; they destroyed everything and everyone that got in their paths.

They were especially dangerous at night, making sleeping in the wild especially dangerous and posting sentries necessary. And it was especially necessary that said sentries remained awake and vigilant; a task which one long-and-white-haired, dog-eared, fanged half-demon wearing a red cloak was failing at spectacularly. Or at least, he was…until his eyes snapped open.

Most other people would have jerked forward in shock from what he had just felt, but Inuyasha wasn't other people. His instincts kept him from making any sudden movements when waking up unless he was under attack; however, they didn't keep his heart from pounding like a jack-hammer in his chest, or his eyes from darting around his surroundings.

'What the FUCK just happened?!' he thought wildly to himself. He clutched the sword propped against his shoulder in an iron grip. 'Could it be one of Naraku's tricks?'

He cast a wary eye around the clearing, observing his friends sleeping around a dying fire. 'No,' Inuyasha thought to himself 'it didn't feel like Naraku, or anything else I'm familiar with for that matter, that's for damn sure.'

Inuyasha fidgeted a bit in an attempt to make his position of leaning against the tree a bit more comfortable. 'But in that case, what the hell was IT anyway? It felt like a… a premonition or something.'

Inuyasha shivered at the implications. He'd occasionally gotten premonitions before, right before he and his friends had had to face ridiculously powerful foes. But those had all been tiny shivers running down his spine and such; to feel something of this magnitude… 'Something's coming, no denying it.' He scowled, baring his fangs. 'And whatever it is, it's gonna be big.'

A small sound drifted through the air. Inuyasha blinked in confusion and turned his head towards the clearing. His eyes softened when he saw that the one making the noise was a teenage girl with long black hair in a Japanese high school uniform mumbling in her sleep. His eyes hardening in determination, Inuyasha leaned his head against the tree and looked skyward.

'It doesn't matter who or what comes at us, there's no way in hell it'll beat me!' He thought confidently to himself. As the stars reflected in his eyes, an unusual thought ran across his mind. Upon registering the thought, Inuyasha's eyes widened, but before he could delve deeper into it, the Japanese girl's mutterings became coherent for a moment.

"Zzz…Inuyasha…sit boy…zzz" SLAM!

Inuyasha lay sprawled out on the ground, his face implanted in the forest floor. "Damn it Kagome…" He grumbled to himself. He spent the rest of the night in the rather uncomfortable position, the ominous thought forgotten.

Some fight for a chance to regain their loved ones…

In the land of Fiore, in the town of Magnolia, there is a guild; a guild filled with the greatest mages in all the land. The greatest mage guild in the world: Fairy Tail.

Normally, the guild is known for being the rowdiest around, continuing to party and rough-house into the dead of night. Tonight, however, is one of the few, peaceful respites that Magnolia could obtain.

It was also quiet in a small apartment a short distance away from the Fairy Tail HQ. The apartment was the rented home of Lucy Heartfilia. Or it had been peaceful, until a pink haired salamander had jerked upright in his bed, sweating like a pig.

Natsu breathed heavily, looking around the bedroom. He cast his gaze around; looking for whatever woke him up. Seeing and smelling nothing unusual, he heaved a sigh and wiped his forehead with his arm. "That was weird…" He grumbled to himself.

Natsu heard a small yawn to his right. Turning, he saw a small blue cat sitting up, rubbing its eyes tiredly. "Hey Natsu, is everything all right?" Happy asked in a sleepy voice.

Natsu smiled calmly. "Yeah, don't worry Happy, just a bad dream, go back to sleep."

"Aye." The cat mumbled as it lay back down.

When he was sure the Exceed was asleep, Natsu dropped his smile. 'What just happened? I don't think that was magic, and Happy wasn't affected, so…' Natsu shrugged his shoulders. "Ah well, it probably isn't important." He turned his eyes towards the window and looked at the stars twinkling outside. "Sure is beautiful out there…" Natsu mused to himself.

Suddenly, a thought flashed across his mind. Natsu blinked considering it and then grinned wildly, showing off sharp canines. "That would be exciting!" With that, he fell back onto the pillow, prepared to fall back to sleep.

Until the door was opened and the light was flicked on by a rather peeved pig-tails wearing blonde. "Natsu! Happy!"

Natsu quickly sat up and turned towards the door where Lucy Heartfilia stood. However, she was way different then he had seen her earlier that day. After all, she hadn't been covered in mud and looking like she wanted to rip his head off at breakfast.

"Err, hey Lucy, how's it goin'? Where were you all day?" Natsu was really not liking the look Lucy was giving him and Happy.

Lucy ignored the question, continuing to stare at him with a murderous look in her eyes. "Why are you two in my bed?" She growled out.

Natsu broke out in a cold sweat. "W-well, y-you see…" He stammered, "We were on our way home, b-but we passed by your house and thought we c-could…crash here tonight?"

"A-aye!" Agreed a recently awakened and extremely nervous Happy.

Lucy's eye twitched. Now, normally whenever she caught one of her guild-mates in her house, she would yell at them a little and then either send them on their way or let them stay awhile; unfortunately for Natsu, Lucy had taken a solo mission earlier that day that required her to help out at a farm.

Considering how she was subsequently covered in mud and varying other brown substances, she was obviously not very happy. Throw in the fact that she was forced to walk home because no one else would give her a lift due to the smell and the result would be a much stressed out celestial mage.

Luckily for her and unfortunately for her friends, she had just found a good outlet for her frustration.

"GET THE HELL OUT OF MY HOME!" CRASH! SPLASH!

Natsu and Happy would spend the rest of the night floating down the lazy Magnolia River.

Some fight because of the fate forced upon them…

Namimori: a nice, casual, every-day town in Japan. Or at least, that is what it looks like on the surface. To a select few of its residents, one fact is well-known: normality (as well as sanity) is often skin-deep.

And this phrase often holds true in Namimori, considering how on the surface, the said select few seem like (relatively) ordinary teenagers, while in reality they are something far different.

These few are the Tenth Generation of the Vongola Famiglia, the current Mafia family leading the underground. But though this might sound threatening, they are actually quite harmless. Well, they were often harmless; most of them anyway.

In any case, though they might seem ordinary (and sane) on the surface, strange things often seem to happen to these would-be Mafioso. And more often than not, they happen to one specific Mafioso. Tsunayoshi Sawada, Tsuna to his friends, No-Good-Tsuna to his tutor, and Tenth Vongola Boss, or Vongola Decimo, to the Mafia world.

Well, Vongola Decimo in training anyway.

Nevertheless, out of all his friends, Tsuna had the worst of luck out of all his friends when it came to unusual occurrences. After all, it's not normal to wake up in the middle of the night panicking is it?

And wake up in a panic he did. Tsuna jerked up in bed hastily, looking around his bedroom to see why he'd suddenly been jerked out of his dream. It was a good dream too; He and Kyoko were just about to-Ahem, well, that's an entirely separate matter, back with the Tenth:

Tsuna breathed heavily, his face covered in sweat, as he twisted around trying to see his whole bedroom. His thoughts were a few steps away from becoming hysterical 'WHAT'S GOING ON, WHAT'S HAPPENING?! IS IT REBORN?! IS SOMEONE ATTACKING ME?! IS REBORN ATTACKING ME!?' Check that, they were extremely hysterical.

Finally, Tsuna spotted something that helped calmed him down (in a way): It was his home tutor, the infant hitman Reborn, sleeping soundly in his hammock and dressed in his usual sleeping cap. The fact that his eyes were wide open would have made others think he was awake, but the snot-bubble coming from his nose was a huge clue to how conscious he was.

Seeing that his teacher/tormentor was still asleep, Tsuna managed to relax, if only a little. He released a breath he hadn't realized he had been holding and fell back on his pillow. 'Well,' he thought grimly 'Now I know that Reborn isn't putting me through another one of his stupid tests, and I'm not in any immediate danger, or else he would be firing mercilessly at anything that moved. But in that case…' Tsuna sat up again, worry and fear present in his eyes 'What could have woken me up?'

Tsuna ran his hands through his hair wearily. 'I hope it isn't anything too dangerous, I don't want to go through something like the Simon fiasco again.' Tsuna felt a small smile creep onto his face as he remembered the aftermath of that particular incident. 'Well, at least we got out of that one alright. I'm sure that whatever it is we'll get through intact.'

As Tsuna smiled contentedly, he turned towards his window and watched the night sky. Suddenly, an unbidden thought came to the forefront of his mind; a thought that plastered a much panicked look on his face. "On second thought, I really don't want to face whatever it is!" Registering that he had accidentally spoken out loud, Tsuna hastily clapped his hands over his mouth. Unfortunately, the damage was already done.

"Go to bed, No-Good-Tsuna." Tsuna whipped his head towards Reborn only to end up staring down the muzzle of the Arcobaleno's gun. BANG!

Tsuna jerked back from the recoil of the Dying Will Bullet hitting his head. His body slowly fell towards the mattress when suddenly…

"SLEEP AS IF I WERE TO DIE!" THUMP! SNORE!

Yes indeed, in Namimori, sanity was purely skin-deep.

Some fight because of the consequences of the past…

In the great country of Amestris, the word "normal" was extremely relative, mainly because of the fact that alchemy was an ancient practice in Amestris. Normal to an average person would be throwing away anything broken, while to an alchemist, a simple transmutation circle fixes everything right up.

But as strange as the research and practices of alchemists are, the alchemists themselves are still human; and as humans, they still require sleep to function. So at night, Amestris falls into a state of peace and quiet, without any abnormalities or oddities to ruin it.

At least that's what happened on most nights. Tonight, an alchemist was breaking the norm.

But this deviation from the world's day-to-day, or in this case, night-to-night routine was not occurring inside a transmutation circle. In fact, this abnormality was not even remotely caused by alchemy. In fact, it was for all intents and purposes impossible to explain.

What happened was that Edward Elric, the Fullmetal Alchemist, the youngest state alchemist in Amestrian history, woke up.

Now, normally, waking up seems like the easiest, most common thing in the world; however, what made this instance of awakening unique was that it happened in the middle of the night for absolutely no reason whatsoever.

Being naturally gifted with intelligence, Ed prided himself on being able to explain a variety of odd situations; so obviously, when he found himself conscious with no reason why, he was vividly panicked.

Ed sprang into an upright position from the log he had been sleeping against, twisting his body around to see what was happening. The results were less than conclusive; absolutely nothing had changed. He was still in a forest, Heinkel and Darius were still propped up against trees, fast asleep, and Greed (or was it Ling?) was still lying on the ground, equally fast asleep.

Seeing nothing was wrong, Ed's actions became a bit calmer, though his brain was still firing at full cylinders. 'What the hell was that? A nightmare?' He shook his head, dismissing the notion 'No, I'd remember having a nightmare. A trap? One of the homunculi? What was it!? Think Ed, think!'

Ed rapped the side of his skull a few times in an attempt to clear his thoughts, but promptly stopped when the pain was far more severe than he had anticipated. The answer was obvious to him immediately though: He'd been hitting his head with his right hand.

Blows are commonly much more severe when dealt by a fist made of metal.

His mood greatly darkened, Ed leaned back against the log and shadowed his eyes with the prosthetic, looking at it sadly. He remembered the pain he had felt when he had gained this new hand…as well as that he had felt when he had lost the original. Ed stared into the eyes of his reflection on the polished metal, lost in his thoughts. 'We've gone through a lot…'

Ed saw the stars shining brightly up above. He stared past his metal limb and watched them glitter brightly, his eyes still filled with pain. 'And we're going to go through a lot more…'

Suddenly, he remembered two figures. One was tall, towering above him, and though he was encased in a suit of armour, he still managed to convey a feeling of hope. The other was a girl, with long blond hair, a kind smile, and blue eyes twinkling with happiness.

Ed's eyes widened at the memories. 'Alphonse…Winry…' His eyes gained a spark of energy. Clenching his metal fist, he swung it crashing down onto the ground beside him. 'Well, no matter what happens, we'll pull through, I'm sure of it!'

Staring into the night with new-found determination, Ed was completely caught off guard by a sudden thought leaping to the forefront of his mind; a thought that replaced confidence with worry. "I hope not, God I hope not…" he murmured to himself, wishing for a way to distract himself from the thought.

Apparently he was heard, though not in the intended manner. To Ed's right, Ling (or was it Greed?) shifted in his sleep. "Go to sleep you damn midget." He mumbled lazily. Yes, definitely Greed.

Ed felt his temper rising, as well as a vein throbbing on his forehead. "WHO THE HELL ARE YOU CALLING A MICROSCOPIC MIDGET EASILY CRUSHED UNDERFOOT YOU BASTARD?!" He roared.

Greed flipped over to face him, his features set in annoyance. "I DIDN'T SAY ANY OF THAT YOU LITTLE BASTARD, BUT AT THIS POINT I WISH I DID!"

"WHY YOU-!" Ed and Greed were cut off by two rocks simultaneously slamming into their faces, courtesy of their recently awakened comrades.

"WILL YOU TWO IDIOTS JUST SHUT UP AND GO BACK TO SLEEP!?"

"YEAH, IT'S PRACTICALLY MIDNIGHT YOU MORONS!"

Ed and Greed exchanged a heated glare before looking away simultaneously.

"Fine…"

"Tch. Whatever…"

With that, they all settled in, went back to sleep, and let the world continue on its nightly course.

Some fight in order to protect what they love…

Karakura Town was a small town in Japan. It seemed normal on the surface, but there were often rumours of strange occurrences transpiring; rumours such as claw marls being gouged into stone walls, buildings being crushed for absolutely no reason, and explosions happening out of thin air.

Of course, there were many explanations to these strange events: some said that the claw marks were from wild bears, that the buildings were structurally unsound, and the explosions were simply spontaneous combustion.

However, each of these explanations was completely and utterly false.

The truth to these events was far more logical: They were caused by undead spirit-warriors known as Soul Reapers fighting evil, ghost-eating spirit-monsters known as Hollows so that the Hollows could be exorcised and sent to the afterlife.

Definitely a plausible explanation.

Not all of the sword-wielding Soul Reapers were undead though. In fact, Karakura Town's own Ichigo Kurosaki was a Substitute Soul Reaper, fully alive and in charge of protecting Karakura Town's population, alive and dead, from the horrors known as Hollows.

Ever since Ichigo had been ripped from his usual life as a high-school student, he had been subjected to many a strange and/or awkward situation.

However, out of all his experience in the insane life of a Soul Reaper, not once had he ever woken up out of the blue like he just had.

Ichigo sat upright his bed, staring at the wall opposite him. He gasped for air for a minute before he finally calmed himself down. Slowly, he looked around and observed his room. The closet in which one of his friends was currently sleeping was still closed, the stuffed lion on his desk was still snoring, and the trap he had set for his dad in case he snuck in was undisturbed.

No, nothing the least bit of the ordinary.

Ichigo sighed and swung his body so that his legs were hanging off his bed. He sat there for a few moments, eyes contemplative. 'OK, what just happened? Nothing's wrong, I don't feel any spiritual pressure, Rukia and Kon are still asleep…I honestly have no idea what's going on…again.'

Ichigo closed his eyes in frustration and rubbed the bridge of his nose. 'Let's see…' He thought 'I did get a sort of…feeling. Yeah, now I remember, it was like a premonition… must have been a hell of a premonition for it to wake me up like that.' Ichigo lay back in bed with his hands folded under his head. 'In that case, the real question is: what could have possibly caused it? It sure picked a hell of a time to show up, considering how we still have to deal with Aizen and the Espada.'

Ichigo sat up and looked out his window at the stars spread out across the night. 'Well, whatever it is, it better not cause any trouble, or I'll deal with it, that's for sure.'

Suddenly, a thought surfaced in his mind. It wasn't a big thought, it was a phrase, a simple sentence; but the implications of that phrase were earth-shattering. Ichigo's eyes widened at the thought. 'That figures, it would be just my luck.'

Resigned to the strange thought, Ichigo lay back down and fell asleep, while all the while events of inconceivable proportions were preparing to occur.

And finally, some fight, simply because someone has to…

In the middle of nowhere, on the lip of a cliff, jutting out into oblivion, there stood a man. The man's features were indiscernible in the midnight-darkness.

The only break from the night were the stars shining ever so brightly above, and a city; a city far, far on the horizon, with lights shining high into the darkness, yet not ruining even a single sparkling light in the heavens.

The man continued to stare off towards the city, yet not truly looking at it. His mind was lost, wandering through his memories and thoughts; remembering what he had done, contemplating what he was planning to do, and wondering what would come next.

Suddenly, he broke out of his thoughts, interrupted by several figures appearing out of nowhere in a line behind him, nearly invisible in the dark.

The man did not stop looking at the far off city as he addressed the individuals. "Is everything ready?" He inquired.

One of the people reached up and adjusted his glasses in the dark. "Yes, the spell is ready to be activated at any moment."

Another fiddled with an object near his eye. "And my machine is well prepared as well. We will be able to activate them on when you say so."

The man nodded, glad at least that part was unimpeded. "And the men?"

Two figures standing side-by-side glanced at each other, than back towards the man. "Our troops are prepared for combat, should the need arise." One, a man, stated simply. "Which we sincerely hope it won't" The other finished in a female voice.

The person with glasses nodded. "My armies are as well."

"And my legions are primed for action." The second man concurred.

A slightly hunched figure shifted his weight. "Our warriors await the signal to battle." He stated in a deep voice.

Another person crossed his arms, a slight clanking sound arising from his armour "As do ours, though with more enthusiasm then I'd prefer." He said, a slight hiss present in his voice.

One of the figures tugged his hat down so that its wide brim covered his eyes. "The Clans are prepared, though quite reluctantly I might add."

The man turned his head slightly so that he was facing the group. "And what about you," He inquired. "Are you all ready for whatever tomorrow might bring?"

One of the figures slammed a metal-clad fist into his open palm. "You know us, always ready for a good fight." He said solemnly.

The man turned his head back towards the city, his head bowed. "Yes, but are we prepared for this? This is the greatest endeavour we have ever faced. If this goes wrong-"

"Oh puhleeze!" exclaimed a high-pitched voice, coming from an excessively short person. Another short person continued "Do we really have to endure your self-doubting tirade?" "Because news flash, win or lose, it doesn't matter!" a third said. A fourth and final midget finished "We can't back down, not here and not now!"

Another person nodded "We're ready, and we're not scared. Come hell or high-water, this is going down, and we'll be at the very epicentre of it. And we will make it out."

The man nodded, knowing the words to be true. "Very well then, in that case, let's go and make the final preparations, shall we? After all," He turned towards the group, fire alight in his eyes, "Tomorrow is a big day."

Everyone present gained a wild smirk or a content grin on their face before pumping their fists towards the sky and yelling out "FOR THE ORDER!"

The man smiled behind his face mask. "For the Order." He concurred.

As they all stood there, looking at each other, brimming with energy and unable to wait, they could only think of a single phrase to sum up what they felt.

For whatever reason that they fought at first, this generation was about to discover an entirely new reason to fight. They were about to enter into something larger and grander than they could ever have imagined.

At that moment in time, the strongest members of the generation had a thought, a single, simple thought of immense proportions, a thought that was about to occur, no matter what tried to stop it.

The thought was a single phrase:

'Tomorrow, nothing will ever be the same.'

These are the stories detailing the adventures of the newest generation in an organization that defended justice.

These are the stories of the generation that ended the war.

These are the Chronicles from the Order of Stars.

To be continued…