Story: The Sword and the Staff (chapter 4)

Authors: bleeding.blade

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Chapter 4

Title: Chapter 3

She had been surprised when the Council Master had chosen her, though she had been careful to conceal her shock. She was aware of the hostility her presence generated; aware of the precariousness of her position. Always, always, there was no room for weakness. To wield magic was to perpetually wage war.

She loved it though; loved the music that sang in her veins when the magic coursed through her body. Lately there had been so much of it—levels of power she'd never remotely accessed when she'd fought for the Grail.

With the Grail gone, she'd believed there would never be use for such power—until the Novice Master's revelation at the Council meeting. Now, it seemed what power she had would barely be enough.

With magic, it seemed, the world was perpetually at war.


Still, despite everything, she was glad for a chance to go home. Things were not well in Japan. She still recalled the pain in Shirou's last letter; had felt his grief span the distance of two oceans.

She had been saddened by his news, though hardly surprised. As always, her ability to foresee exceeded her capacity for hope.

The problem was Shirou: Shirou with his misguided chivalry, his violent desire to protect what didn't need protection, his inability to understand the bindings of duty. They were bindings Rin knew too well from her own life. And she sympathized with Saber.

To be given back your life, but not the purpose that had given it direction...Rin shuddered. It would have been like a life without magic. It would have almost been better if Saber had remained dead.

Shirou couldn't understand it though. Love was enough for him, so it had to be enough for everyone. What he couldn't understand was that when one lost one's soul, no amount of love could fill the void.

Saber's soul had been Britain. She had lived for it, died for it, come back to life for it, died again for it. Until the end, not even her love for Shirou had nullified her bond with her land. It had been the sole reason for her existence.

And then suddenly she'd come back to them, and none of them knew why or how. And even as she'd shared their elation, Rin knew the bliss wouldn't last. And so she had left Fuyuki, enthralled by what lay ahead—and concerned for those left behind.

It was not too long after her departure that Shirou's letters had started.

Rin shook her head. Compared to the complexities of human relationships, magic seemed infinitely easier. It was why, she decided, her heart would remain untouched for the remainder of her life.

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