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[NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

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[NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:39 am

This is a story of my own creation, based on the matches and results of ISML 2008 ^^

It was originally written in Chinese. I started writing it on and off in 2013 (when I first got involved with ISML) during my spare time, and finished the bulk within about half a year, and published on Baidu Tieba.

I had planned to write a long story from 2008 to 2012/2013, ending with the crowning of Kanade and her knight Kuroneko, but I was both busy and lazy so I stopped after going through one-third of the story for 2009.

Recently I remembered this thing, and thought maybe it'd be nice to try start writing again? I'm no longer active on Baidu Tieba, and I'm fine with writing in English, so I guess I'll make a place for myself here ^^

Anyway, I'll take some time to translate into English and post the 2008 story here :> Hope there'll be at least a few people who are interested and like my story!

This will be the first time I try to write something relatively long in English, and I'm sure there will be loads of language problems that I could improve. If you spot them, please let me know! I'll try to do better in the future! ><




DECLARATION:

This is meant to be a work of creation. Puns used are not meant to reflect actual incidents or the author's opinions. No need to take anything seriously, this is just for fun ^^
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:42 am

Foreword




Unity. Division. Unity. Division. It seems that neither really goes without the other, doesn't it? Peace never seems to last, while war never seems to end.

When there is power, so will there be competition. When there are people, so will there be politics. When there are benefits, so will there be clashes. Even the tiniest spark can turn into a fire that burns fiercely across the territory, breaking down and swallowing everything into its cruel flames. Once the horns of wars start blowing, there is nothing that can be done to stop them, no matter how great and capable the ruler may be. Across the world, every piece of history is written with stories of the shedding of blood and tears.

The anime world is a utopia away from such cruelty and nonsense, where none of these things happen, where everything is pure and beautiful. But once people get involved, the dark side gets exposed. Just like a stream of clear water, even if it gets stained by the tiniest drop of black ink, it immediately turns into nothing but sewage.

The story recorded here is a tale of what happened in a certain virtual world across the span of five years, and it is one hundred percent true.
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:49 am

Prologue: The Downfall of Area 11




This was a place called 'Saimoe'.




Moe was a vague concept. None of the people here could clearly describe in words what moe actually was, but they all had their own understanding and interpretation of what moe was within their hearts. What they also knew, was that moe represented life, and was the origin of everything existing in this place. Where there was moe, there was life. People gathered, constructed villages, and spread the moe that they shared.

Sadly, there was a limit to the amount of available land. As population grew and each power developed, borders started to clash, and accompanying that came disagreements. Some tried to talk their ways out, but when negotiations failed then they could only resort to the most primitive measure of all. Wars spread across the territory, clans started to attack each other, lives and homes were lost, cries of despair could be heard everywhere.

Small powers either got absorbed by larger ones, or united with each other to form new powers and increase their odds of survival in this chaotic cruel world. As time went on, the number of individual states remaining decreased exponentially, and finally became all united under one particular power named 'Area 11', and renamed themselves as the 'Allied Saimoe Territories', AST for short. Their leader, a magical girl named Kinomoto Sakura, was crowned the first ever Queen of AST.

From separate clusters of villages to a mix of fights and battles, and finally achieving harmony across the land, the wish of the people were finally granted. The land of moe enjoyed years of peace.

However, beneath this mask of stability and facade, what remained hidden in the dark was the endless greed of the human heart.




At the start of the fourth Era of AST, a new ripple began to take form within the Royal Family itself.

The inheritance of the AST crown did not flow in families, rather the heir was chosen according to capability. Among the servants of the different candidates, there existed a group of people named Moe no Voce, who called themselves 'MVers'. Despite being shady, they had a certain level of influence on the determination of the heir to the crown, and as they became more powerful they gradually gained the trust of various members in the Royal ladder. Even after the eventual winner was crowned, MVers continued to expand and became a significant force.

People were not blind. They could take hints from what was happening, or rather what they saw, in the Royal Family. Rumours started to form, and there were even people crying out loud in the public: MVers are taking over the AST!

As the AST passed down to its sixth era, the perceived influence of MVers became larger than ever, and boiling on top of this heat was the growing displeasure of the people, who were no longer satisfied with the direction the AST was heading towards. Calls for change came from all over the place, flags of revolution rose from everywhere.

Heroes are born by being at the right place at the right time. Among all these, there was a mysterious group of people who called themselves 'The Staff'. What they proposed was 'Get rid of MVers, create an open and fair platform, where different races from across the world get a fair and equal share of moe and freedom'. None other voices were more appealing to the people than this, they started to receive echoes from different places, more and more people armed up and gathered under this newly formed superpower.

As they clashed with the gradually deteriorating AST, they finally gained control of over half of the original Saimoe territory, and declared independence. A new state was born, in the name of 'Independent States of Moe and Love', ISML for short, with what appeared to be a rivalry with AST.

Its story began here.
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby RailWarrior » Fri Jun 03, 2016 4:37 am

Suggestions for the foreword:
Spoiler:
Peace never seems to last, while wars never seem to end
It reads better if "war" is singular.
Even the tiniest spark can turn into a fire that burns fiercely across the territory, breaking down and swallowing everything [into its cruel flames] [along its way].
Having both these parts makes the sentence hard to read; better to choose one and delete the other. I suggest deleting "along its way" because "burns fiercely across the territory" already gives the imagery of spreading flames.
No matter how great and capable the ruler may be, once the horns of wars are blown there is nothing that can be done to stop it

Here, from the sentence structure, "stop it" would be referring stopping the horns of war from blowing. But if they've already been "blown," obviously they can't be stopped anymore. So instead, this should be written in progressive form--"once the horns of war [start blowing], there is nothing that can be done to stop [them]" (Also note the singular "war" again.) Additionally, move the clause "no matter how great and capable the ruler may be" to the end; this is so it becomes readily clear as to what "them" refers to (the horns of war? the ruler(s)?).
The anime world is supposed to be a utopia away from such cruelty and nonsense, where none of these sad things should happen, everything should be pure and beautiful
Remove the uncertainty stuff. "The anime world is a utopia away from cruelty and nonsense, where none of these things happen, where everything is pure and beautiful." And then once people get involved, so and so happens.
[...], and is one hundred percent true.
"and it is..."
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:20 pm

RailWarrior wrote:Suggestions for the foreword:
Spoiler:
Peace never seems to last, while wars never seem to end
It reads better if "war" is singular.
Even the tiniest spark can turn into a fire that burns fiercely across the territory, breaking down and swallowing everything [into its cruel flames] [along its way].
Having both these parts makes the sentence hard to read; better to choose one and delete the other. I suggest deleting "along its way" because "burns fiercely across the territory" already gives the imagery of spreading flames.
No matter how great and capable the ruler may be, once the horns of wars are blown there is nothing that can be done to stop it

Here, from the sentence structure, "stop it" would be referring stopping the horns of war from blowing. But if they've already been "blown," obviously they can't be stopped anymore. So instead, this should be written in progressive form--"once the horns of war [start blowing], there is nothing that can be done to stop [them]" (Also note the singular "war" again.) Additionally, move the clause "no matter how great and capable the ruler may be" to the end; this is so it becomes readily clear as to what "them" refers to (the horns of war? the ruler(s)?).
The anime world is supposed to be a utopia away from such cruelty and nonsense, where none of these sad things should happen, everything should be pure and beautiful
Remove the uncertainty stuff. "The anime world is a utopia away from cruelty and nonsense, where none of these things happen, where everything is pure and beautiful." And then once people get involved, so and so happens.
[...], and is one hundred percent true.
"and it is..."


Thank you for the comments, Rail! ^^ Corrections done.

Hope you'll find the story interesting enough for you to follow!
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Reverend » Fri Jun 03, 2016 3:27 pm

So, who's the first protagonist?
Giving his love for life, and died dreaming about her in the end. A real happy man, right? ~
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Fri Jun 03, 2016 4:35 pm

Reverend wrote:So, who's the first protagonist?


... >:)
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Fri Jun 03, 2016 6:51 pm

Chapter 1: The War Rises Again




Midnight. With the exception of the crescent of moon hanging in the night sky, shining what little light there was into the silent darkness, it seemed as if every living being was in deep sleep.

Perhaps that was why the footsteps of the girl pacing to and fro inside the General's Shelter echoed so loudly.

Standing at five feet four inches tall, she was considered above average in this Saimoe world, where females ruled and males were effectively extinct. Her long gray straight hair flowed down to her waist, with a pair of large sapphire eyes as clear as water. Continuing her stroll in her own shelter, she let out a deep sigh.




"Tomoyo, how long has it been since we last met! I am so happy to see you again!" Accompanying a cheerful voice and quick footsteps, another girl came in through the shelter opening. Despite being slightly shorter than Sakagami Tomoyo, the gray-haired General inside the shelter, she had a much more energetic aura compared to the calm and reserved style of Tomoyo. Her black shoulder-length hair was tied up with an orange ribbon, and had a red badge with 'Brigade Leader' written on it attached to her left upper arm. Her name was Suzumiya Haruhi, Leader of the SOS Brigade, and also the de facto head of Kyoto, the power controlling the southern regions in ISML.

Stopping her stroll but with her back towards Haruhi, Tomoyo let out another sigh. "If possible, how much I wish that our encounter would be on a peaceful night inside a decorated room, with wine served and us chatting cheerfully about our recent experiences. Now that we are on a battlefield, what's there to be happy about?"

Having raised her arms ready for a hug, Haruhi froze. But she instantly let out another laugh and said, "Oh, come on, Tomoyo! Isn't it such a great time that we finally meet each other after so long? Speaking such cold words... People who don't know might actually get the wrong idea that we are on opposing forces!"

Tomoyo finally turned around, with her large sapphire eyes fixed on Haruhi's face, and the tiniest bit of uncertainty in her gaze. "During these times of clashes and backstabs, who will forever remain your friend? And who will forever be your enemy?" As if spotting something missing, she moved forward and looked behind Haruhi. "Oh, so Yuki is not here?"

The smile on Haruhi's face slightly dampened. "She is not interested at all. I hate to admit it, but strictly in terms of strength I believe she is probably the strongest in our Brigade, even I cannot claim I will be able to beat her. Why must she be a kuudere, and not care about what is happening to this country and its people at all? All she does is lock herself up indoors, and read." With the final word, she threw a teasing glance at Tomoyo.

Despite being expressionless all along, even Tomoyo understood the joke and let out a slight twist in her lips, as if about to smile. But immediately she returned to her somewhat depressed tone, "How envious I am of a heart not disrupted by the ripples in this world! But I guess that's how it is when you are trapped in the stir, even if you want nothing of it, people come find you. Without Yuki, and you know about ours' old problem... The chances are not looking good..."

With a smile on her face, Haruhi said, "Oh come on Tomoyo, don't always sound so depressed! Is that the reason why your hair is all gray, despite we being around the same age? There are a lot of fools in this world who don't understand the danger we are facing, but do you think I, Haruhi, will be one of them?" And with that she reached her hand out of the shelter as if to grab something, then with a timid scream, something was thrusted into the shelter and thrown to the floor.

It was a teenage girl. Her beautiful face looked so young and childish as if she were even younger than Haruhi, but her body curves suggested otherwise. As if her huge boobs were not peculiar enough, she was actually in a maid costume, with bunny ears sitting atop her reddish hair. Her large brown eyes were watering with tears, glancing back and forth towards Tomoyo and Haruhi, as if she were afraid that she would be eaten alive.

Letting out a slight frown, Tomoyo asked, "Just from where on earth did you kidnap this moe little girl?"

Haruhi, having a broad smile and her eyes completely fixed on the girl still lying on the floor, replied, "Oh don't speak like that as if I am a bad guy! Although she has a laid back character and doesn't make a big name for herself, this girl is the eldest among us SOS sisters!"

With a gasp, Tomoyo gave the girl on the floor a bow. "This is the first time we meet, Miss Asahina Mikuru. It is my pleasure."

Trembling while trying to get on her feet, Mikuru said, "T- Thanks for the kind words! It is such an honour for Mikuru! Tanigawa-sensei had always taught us to make the most of our capabilities and serve the society. As his oldest student, Mikuru feels responsible to inherit his wish and do her best! Now that the enemy is pushing towards us, Mikuru believes that she must stand up to protect her mother nation!" Despite the contents of the speech being somewhat inspiring, her voice was so soft and girly it sounded as if they were coming out of a child's mouth.

With another frown, Tomoyo thought to herself. "Tanigawa Nagaru was a legendary martial master, other than Sensei I don't think there was any other person who could be considered to be on the same level. It's so surprising that his eldest student would be such a moe little girl!" Taking another glance at Haruhi, her mind continued wandering, "Tanigawa-sensei had always been known to be strict and picky, with a shrewd sense of people's potential. He only had three students throughout his life, and although the second student Suzumiya Haruhi is now the leader, the SOS Brigade has always claimed that all three of them are on equal grounds. Both Haruhi and Yuki are famous generals well known across the world, although this Asahina Mikuru has always been laid back and of much lower profile, being the eldest student must say something about her capability."




Getting impatient, Haruhi grasped Mikuru's bunny ears. Ignoring her weak cry, she said to Tomoyo, "She's nothing compared to Yuki, but I can promise you she's strong, normal people won't be able to beat her, though of course the people we are facing are no normal third-graders. My two long-time lieutenants are also with me. Other than Yuki's army, all other forces have come with me from Kyoto, and we are all ready to sacrifice in the name of moe. As Leader of the SOS Brigade, I am prepared to give my all alongside you, we are at your command."

With a slight nod, Tomoyo said, "Thank you so much. It is no secret about those guys' plot, last week once we detected their moves in the northwest, Kyou immediately set out to contact Shana in the east. According to what we had agreed, she should be back by tonight. Why is it taking so long?"

Haruhi let out a slight frown. "We all know about Shana's temper. Maybe..." At that exact moment, the sound of horse hooves came from afar, and gradually became closer. Having heard it, Tomoyo and Haruhi went out of the shelter.

A purple-haired beautiful girl was just getting off her horse. On the left side of her head was a small white ribbon tied to her hair, in her left hand was a small animal which looked like a boar, and in her right hand was a book which appeared to be a dictionary. Her name was Fujibayashi Kyou, and was widely considered to be the second-in-command in the army under Sakagami Tomoyo. There was an astonishing type of beauty in her appearance, but at the moment her hair was slightly messy, and on her arms were fresh scars of numerous scratches.

Having a bright idea of what had happened, Tomoyo asked, "Oh dear what happened to you, Kyou? Did you get taught a lesson by our dear Shana?" Behind her, Haruhi was laughing unstoppably, while Mikuru seemed slightly anxious and not knowing what to do.

Not even having caught her breath, Kyou hurled her right arm towards Tomoyo, "Stop teasing me you idiot! You knew I am no match for Shana, and yet you sent me to get beaten up! Why didn't you ask Haruhi, or just go yourself?" The dictionary flew straight towards Tomoyo's face, creating a sharp noise with the speed it flew.

With unbelievable reflexes, Tomoyo flung her right leg at the dictionary, kicking it back towards Kyou. "We are all on the same level, no point denying it. Last time I only got lucky."

Kyou caught the dictionary in mid-air, and continued with her rant. "Who doesn't know we are all on the same level! Even under normal circumstances, who can claim she can definitely beat Shana? And who knows what kind of bloody luck I got, some thief stole Shana's melonpans, and I had to go up and find her at this time, is there any posssibility that I won't get beaten up?"

Tomoyo looked slightly amused. "I see, so it was Shana under a melonpan boost. In that case, I'd say you are lucky to be only so mildly injured."

Kyou let out a look of pride at those comments. "True, isn't it? That day I was going up towards KugiRie Palace... Wow it hasn't been long since I last went there, but now it's such a huge palace! Thousands of individual houses, no exaggeration, I couldn't even figure out the directions. So I sent Botan..." She gave the boar in her left hand a gentle squeeze, receiving a cute 'Puhi~' in reply. "... to search with her nose, and finally found Shana in a basement, which was a newly constructed melonpan storage place. To be honest, I think that basement might even be larger than the Headquarters of your SOS Brigade, Haruhi... Anyway when I got there I saw Yuuji being hung upside down on the ceiling and seemed unconscious, with his upper body naked and giving out a strong smell of alcohol. While Shana was ranting about some thief getting Yuuji drunk and stealing her melonpan..."

Haruhi was already rolling on the floor laughing. "We all know how dismal Yuuji is, but Shana is such a baka little lovebird. Who on earth would send Yuuji to guard her important melonpans? It's just normal to have them stolen!"

Kyou continued, "That's true, but you know battles don't wait. I immediately reported the latest news of the frontlines to Shana, but she wouldn't listen a thing, and even pointed her weapon at me. You won't believe how much effort I spent to escape from KugiRie Palace, she even said if I kept bugging her she would cook my Motorbike for dinner!" Patting her horse beside her, she mocked Shana's scream. "Urusai urusai urusai! Nothing can be more important than melonpan!"




Amidst the laughter, Tomoyo said, "We all know that Shana is a baka, we don't call her 'Bakana' for no reason. Of course, I am not saying that bakas are not moe- OUCH!"

Retrieving her fist which just sank into Tomoyo's stomach, Haruhi ignored Tomoyo who was whining in pain, and said, "Despite being a baka, Shana is not stupid, nor is she someone who doesn't know about priorities. I believe she is already leading the KugiRie army on their way towards the frontlines. For heaven's sake, our dear Tomoyo, for how long do you plan to act? This level of fist couldn't seriously cause you any pain!"

Still clutching her belly, Tomoyo muttered, "Wow our Brigade Leader is so modest. Are you overestimating me or underestimating yourself..."

Kyou interrupted, "Fine, fine, stop getting carried away. Who knows at what speed the Joint Forces are pushing their way towards us at this very moment! The Rozen Maidens in the north are still manageable, I believe the eastern front can be handed to Shana with no problem. In the west, though, we are facing the Lyrical Nanoha army, which until a few years ago was still an overwhelming power in Area 11!"

Tomoyo nodded. "Even if we combine forces from both our armies, whether we can match up against the Lyrical Nanoha is still unknown... The Rozen Maidens are not to be underestimated too, have you forgotten that war two years ago in AST, Kyou?"

Kyou leaned her head towards one side, pointing her finger towards her cheek. "You mean the War of Thousand Rocks?"

Haruhi sighed. "That was probably the largest-scaled war in the history of saimoe. I remember it was during the fourth era of AST, the forces from the east, south, west and north all gathered at Thousand Rocks, and engaged in a huge brawl. What they didn't know, was that Suiseiseki creeped upstream of the river, and destroyed the dam which was holding the water back. The water flooded the battlefield, with Suiseiseki's army sweeping all armies and capturing four Generals, including our own Yuki and Fate Testarossa. According to rumours, Testarossa being captured was the reason why Takamachi Nanoha agreed to step down from her crown, and as all other forces had hostages in the hands of Suiseiseki, nobody dared compete with her. I believe Suigintou was also among the captives? It is unbelievable that the Rozen Maidens can do something to another member of their own!"

Kyou shook her head. "Shana was also one of the captives, I had heard her talk about what happened at that time. In retrospect, I think there is a possibility that Suigintou was actually a bait, luring out the other three armies to attack her at Thousand Rocks, where the landscape heavily favours strategic attack, and allow Suiseiseki to pick them off once and for all. Otherwise, how could the time and place be so perfect? That can't be coincidence!"

Tomoyo nodded. "I could bet on anything that Rozen Maidens are not as divided as they appear to be. We are talking about Shana and Yuki here, one is a baka while the other never talks, I wouldn't be surprised if they fell into some kind of trap."

Haruhi let out a smirk. "It is true, but what can Rozen Maidens do away from their little nest? They are certainly a force in the north, but once across the river? In the territories of ISML, I believe only Suigintou is worth consideration, others are mere weaklings. Shana will have no problem handling them all by herself, let's focus our minds on the west. What is the current situation?"

Tomoyo cleared her throat, and said slowly, "Just as Haruhi said, we expect the northern army to be revolving around Suigintou. They had pushed their way to the edge of the river, but since then they had not advanced. I believe rather than actually coming across, they are just putting pressure on Shana so she can't come support us in the west, I do not think they are actually willing to sacrifice their soldiers for Lyrical Nanoha. This so-called 'Joint Forces' are each plotting in their own minds, I won't believe they can truly cooperate with each other."

Kyou continued, "As for the west, we still have our two old friends. The difference is, it seems their main forces have now shifted to Testarossa instead of Takamachi."

Haruhi nodded. "That seems to be true. Previously Takamachi led an army towards us, I sent Kagamin, and it didn't take us long to defeat them. According to Kagamin, the enemy soldiers were mostly lightly-equipped, and retreated without much of a battle, so their main forces are probably still with Testarossa."

Kyou interrupted, "Speaking about Kagamin, where is she?" Haruhi twisted her mouth upwards in a smile. "Oh, so you are missing your purple-haired friend?" Kyou blushed. "None of your business! Where is she?" Haruhi replied, "She said the opportunity could not be missed, and led her army to chase after Takamachi."

Tomoyo looked concerned. "Will there be danger?" Haruhi patted her shoulder. "I already reminded her to be careful about traps, after all we do not know where Testarossa's main army is located at the moment. But Kagamin has always been the careful type, and she has Konata and Tsukasa by her side, so everything will probably be alright."

Tomoyo nodded. "I guess I'm comfortable with letting Kagamin go after Takamachi, after all that isn't the Takamachi we're talking about some years ago. Among us all, Kagamin is probably the most familiar with the situation in Area 11, so she will be able to sort things out I believe. So now the enemy we shall be cautious about is Testarossa, who remains hidden somewhere not known to us. We must be alert with every step we make, any mistake can be critical. Haruhi, you lead your army go the southern path to support Kagamin, advance slowly and be aware of Testarossa's surprise attacks. Without Testarossa, Takamachi is no match for Kagamin." Haruhi nodded.

Tomoyo continued, "As for me and Kyou, we will be guarding the northern and central path respectively, looking out for Testarossa whose position is still uncertain. I believe Shana will be able to defeat Suigintou quite quickly, once she turns west will be the time that all three of us strike. No matter how powerful Testarossa may be, she won't be able to handle us. ISML will be protected by us, and must not fall into the hands of those people!"
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Tolbert » Fri Jun 03, 2016 9:48 pm

Just when I started to revisit older ISML tournaments more thoroughly, this novel comes up. And that's really convenient - it would definitely make the whole process of understanding of older tournaments easier for a newbie like me. I'm really liking this work so far, looking forward for more *.*
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Sat Jun 04, 2016 6:58 am

Tolbert wrote:Just when I started to revisit older ISML tournaments more thoroughly, this novel comes up. And that's really convenient - it would definitely make the whole process of understanding of older tournaments easier for a newbie like me. I'm really liking this work so far, looking forward for more *.*


Thank you for the kind comments! ^^ It should be noted though the novel doesn't really reflect what actually happened in the real voting :P I'm just trying to make a story retrospectively based on results ^^ But glad you like it! I'll continue posting when I have time!
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Re: [NOVEL] Romance of the ISML Kingdoms (1)

Postby Just » Sun Jun 12, 2016 3:16 pm

Chapter 2: The Reawaken Devil




It was such a wonderful evening. The dimly lit light, the gently burning fragrance, the soft and warm bed. And most important of all, this beautiful girl wrapped in the arms fast asleep. Gently brushing one hand down her naked back, the light touch and the soft texture of skin was dizzifying. Everything felt almost unreal.

With eyes fixed upon this familiar lovely face, where even the length of each eyelash and position of each freckle were already deeply sealed within memory- if there were any freckles at all, whose heart would not miss a beat? Such a perfect beauty, with silk-like hair rolling down reaching the waist, and her whole body so tightly in contact from top to bottom, even the gentlest move would wake her from her sweet dream. Such a warm scene that one would wonder whether this was true, whether this was only a dream, such heartfelt warmth that probably existed only in heaven.

Ah, if only time could stop flowing, and stop at this very moment. One would be willing to stay like this forever.

With a soft moan, the head of this beauty moved a bit. Slowly opening her eyes, with a smile so sweet and warm that could melt even the coldest heart, followed by the touch of the soft lips. It must have ignited a certain flame somewhere hidden deep inside the body, for the only thing that could be felt was the strong desire to hug back, pull the blankets over and roll on top of this gorgeous girl, and enjoy the seemingly endless excitement of bodies merging into one.

Amazingly, there was still the slightest bit of conscience left in the brain. With the minimum possible amount of force, so gentle that no pain would be inflicted, but just adequate to separate the two bodies.

The look of surprise could not be more obvious on her face. After all, she had never been pushed away in this situation before. The vividly burning passion inside those beautiful eyes were replaced by disappointment, without showing even some signs of trying to hide it, and tears came rolling down her cheek.

"I cannot live on without you beside me, Nanoha."




She spoke it so softly, her voice was the most wonderful music existent in the world, but why were these words tingling so violently in the ears? Nanoha felt a suffocating pain inside her, as if her heart was about to be torn into pieces.

Tears kept rolling down Fate's face, which was now deeply buried inside Nanoha's chest. As if she were a little girl throwing a tantrum at her boyfriend, Fate continued moaning, "I don't care! I don't want you to be separated from me! No matter how short that time may be!"

Nanoha gently petted her head. Deep inside her, she wanted to whisper those endless words softly into her ears, and turn the sorrows of this girl into happiness again, just like she had been doing for so long. Shouldn't that be the easiest and most enjoyable job in the world? Yet now, words had lost her. She opened her mouth, but nothing was able to come out. Her vision started to get blurred, and the feel of something cold came trinkling down the face. Were those tears? This had to be a joke! When was the last time the mighty Takamachi Nanoha, known across the planet as the closest thing to being immortal, ever cried? But if those weren't tears, what possibly could they be?

After what felt like centuries, Fate's sobs finally started to wane. The most beautiful face on earth lifted up, and the brown eyes which were more shiny than jewels met with the blue pair. Through those eyes, she could see a reflection of herself. Fate without Nanoha by her side. How lonely! How pitiful! "Is there really no way to change this?"

"No. I am doing this for you." Nanoha finally found her own voice- No, this couldn't possibly be her voice. How could her voice be so cracked?

Fate knew too well about the stubbornness of this girl in front of her, once she made a decision, there was nothing that could possibly change it. Yes, she also knew she was doing this all for her, but still, why must it be so painful? "Is the situation so bad that there isn't even the smallest chance of turning things around?"

Shaking her head, Nanoha said, "You heard what Shinku said yesterday. How much of that do you think was true?" Fate lowered her head. "Having been with you for so long, you think I could have possibly not noticed? That woman had no sincerity in her words at all, not even a bit."

Nanoha nodded. "So you know, right? The Rozen Maidens have no intention to truly help us. The best they will do would be to act like they are helping, without doing anything that would be of use. This war... We are completely on our own." Fate let out a deep sigh. "Do we actually have to do this? Can we not fight? After all these years, I am starting to get tired."

Wrapping her hand around Fate's shoulder, Nanoha looked up towards the ceiling. "Even if I don't want to fight, people come screaming for my head. You remember the scar that girl with the cleaver gave me?" Fate nodded, and tears began to flow down her cheeks like marbles from a broken necklace. She gently placed her hand on Nanoha's chest, so soft, so comfortable, the pillow on which her head lay on so many times, listening to the heartbeat which was synchronized to her own. Each inch of skin she knew too well, even the scent of her body. Everything was so perfect. Except the inch-long scar right under her left ribs.

Nanoha gently let go of Fate, got down from the bed, and started putting on her clothes. "This scar is a reminder to me every time I see it, what it means to be strong. The stronger you are, the more you have to bear on your shoulders. It's true, both you and I are tired of fighting, we want to spend time away from this cruel world, with only the two of us. We can have daughters, and enjoy peaceful lives just like anybody else, instead of having to go through this endless fighting. But we have no choice. Even if we don't go find people, they come and find us wanting our lives. The only way to survive? Beat everyone. Beat every single one of them who wants to kill us, and grasp the power necessary to protect ourselves. Without that, we are meat on the chopping block waiting to be broken into pieces."

Still lying on the bed covered in blankets, watching Nanoha's body slowly being covered by clothes, Fate said softly with eyes lowered, "Wasn't AST quite a good place? It was our home. Why did we have to come to ISML, a place where we were complete strangers?" Nanoha bent down and kissed her on the forehead, "AST has already taken over by MVers. You know well what kind of people they are, and as aged as we have become we will eventually be discarded by them just like unwanted garbage. We still have strength left in us, and we need to take the opportunity to open up a new world for the two of us."

Fate gently pulled the corner of Nanoha's shirt and said, "Bring more people with you! I will only be standing by, I don't even need that many..." Nanoha placed a finger on Fate's protesting lips, and gently smiled. "Trust me! I know what I am doing. Takamachi Nanoha will not die so easily." She turned, and walked out of the room, leaving a heartbroken Fate alone in the room.




Nanoha looked at the image of herself inside the mirror. It seemed like ages since she last put on these battle jackets, luckily it still fit. But those eyes were so unfamiliar, they looked so hesitant and uncertain. Had these past few years of failure worn them down? Nanoha slapped her face, and closed her eyes, allowing thoughts about the past of Fate and herself come flowing in.

Scenes flashed in front of her eyes, as if they were happening once again. With one final shot, Nanoha summoned all her power and destroyed all her enemies, convincingly becoming the Queen of the AST. Fate fell into a trap and was captured, and she was forced to let go of her crown. The girl with demented eyes and mad laughter lunged towards her, and sank her cleaver deep into her flesh. The AST, which had been the place to nurture and protect her for so many years, got taken over by MVers, and suddenly everything changed and became so disappointing. As large as the world might be, they were getting tossed around, no longer having anywhere they could call home...

Nanoha slowly opened her eyes. Yes, everything she was about to do, was done for Fate. She had to do it, and make Fate the happiest woman in the world. She slowly raised her left hand and opened her fist, within which she had been clutching the small red ball of jewel.

"Raising Heart, set up."

"Stand by, ready."

It was even quicker than usual. So Raising Heart was also hyped up and excited, right? Although age and battles had corroded her, it was still shiny as if it were new. And with the thought of Fate, even Raising Heart seemed to vibrate a little in excitement. Yes, this giant staff was raised only because of Fate, the girl she loved with all her heart.

Nanoha lifted her head back up again, and looked into the mirror. Her eyes were once again flashing with determination and spirit, with a commanding aura that would send shivers down anybody's spine looking straight into them.

The White Devil was back.
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User avatar
Just
[Kiwi's Melon]
[Kiwi's Melon]
 
Posts: 3664
Joined: 10 Apr 2013
Location: Hong Kong
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Melon Pan: 0
2017 Female Favorite: Shiodome Miuna
2017 Male Favorite: Hikigaya Hachiman
2016 Female Favorite: Shiodome Miuna
2016 Male Favorite: Otosaka Yū
Wish: May children never suffer.
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