Part 199: Princess
Music: Whirlpool of Fate 2
She sighs and puts her fingers on her temple.
When she closes her eyes, heavy darkness assails her body.
No, it is just a scream.
It is not coming from outside.
The scream comes from her body and mind, telling her that her fatigue is at the limit.
It has been a month since she was summoned.
Since then, she has done her best to win.
Her Master is an ordinary person without a Magic Circuit, and she is the weakest of the Servants.
To make up for that, she abused forbidden magic.
Collection from the people. The magical string she placed throughout the town and the control of the ley line using sacrifices.
These are all reasons why she was called a witch during her life.
But she has never used them before.
She should have never used them, and she did not intend to do the forbidden.
Why did she end up using them for a meaningless conflict like this?
" It is all for the Holy Grail. It is natural for me to go crazy for something that can grant any wish."
That is a lie.
She knows the true identity of the Holy Grail.
She already knows what that thing is and why Servants like her are summoned.
It is true that most wishes can be granted using the Holy Grail that appears in this town.
It will allow her to stay in this world with physical form, and it will allow her to start a second life as a "human".
"How stupid. There is no meaning in such a thing."
Saying so, she closes her eyes.
She empties her mind.
For nowshe lets her guard down and rests her mind.
It was the mountain where the Ryudou Temple is located.
She was stumbling aimlessly through the dense forest.
She left behind a trail of blood.
In her hand was a dagger that breaks all contracts.
Her purple robe was wet with rain, and her limbs had turned white from the winter cold.
For a Servant, magical energy is like a lifeline that allows them to stay in this world.
But that was all lost. No magical energy was coming from her Master.
But that was only natural.
She had just killed her own Master.
That was the cause of her exhaustion.
SheServant Caster was about to disappear alone as compensation for obtaining freedom.
She had done well.
Her Master was a legitimate magus.
He was in his thirties, had a medium build, and had few noteworthy characteristics.
He had no will to fight, but dreamed of victory. He was a man that only waited for the other Masters to kill each other.
The man had not trusted Caster.
He treated Caster coldly as she was a superior magus, and he insulted her for being inferior to other Servants.
She gave up on him after a few days.
She acted as an obedient Servant and filled the man's conceit.
In short, she made him use his Command Spells for meaningless things.
She told him he did not need the Command Spells.
She made him believe that she would be faithful to her Master even without the Command Spell.
It was his fault for believing in her.
The Master used his third Command Spell for a meaningless thing, and was killed by Caster at that moment.
It was easy.
She did not like the fact that the contract with him still existed, so she killed him using the Rule Breaker.
But she would not normally be this exhausted.
This was the curse her Master had left her.
Her Master did not approve of her, as she was a better magus than he was.
Therefore, he limited her magical energy to be always below his level.
The magical energy level of a mere human cannot keep a Servant in this world.
She would normally be able to stay in this world for two days after losing her Master.
But now was different.
Her magical energy was drastically decreasing with every second, and the end was near.
Probably a few more minutes.
She would disappear if she could not find her next Master in that time.
She would disappear before she could fight, unable to do anything. She would be a pitiful Servant, summoned only to be trampled upon.
It was vexing.
It was vexing, but it wasn't anything out of the ordinary.
It had always been like this for her.
She was treated unreasonably like this all the time.
She was always used as a tool, and she was never understood by anyone.
Music: Whirlpool of Fate 2
There is no memory after that.
After everything was over, the girl, who was a princess, was in an unfamiliar country.
A girl that betrayed her father, the king, for a man.
A witch that cut apart her own brother and threw the pieces into the sea to escape her native country.
And the man who wanted it done cast her aside in order to become king, saying he could not marry a witch.
She was controlled and taken to an unknown country, was marked as a witch, and the only person she could rely on threw her away.
That is her origin.
There is nothing people can blame her for, and people around her were aware of that.
But still, people continued to demand for her to be a witch.
An evil to protect the king.
An evil to be on the receiving end of evil superstitions.
People wanted a convenient scapegoat that they could blame for any disaster.
This pattern has never changed.
People demand easily understandable evil to reassure themselves of their own goodness.
If people do not know their ugliness, so be it.
They can stay ignorant, go to hell for their own crimes, and suffer forever.
They won't be able to get out of hell.
They will suffer forever as criminals because they do not know what crimes they have committed.
That is the reason for existence she imposed on herself.
That is the only role people gave to the girl, to the one called the witch, who never had a free will.
"What are you doing there?"
It was a heavy voice.
She did not have the composure to check who it was.
She just thought it was all over.
She had no power to use magic.
Her purple robe might have looked like a coat, but she was covered in blood.
That caused the last of her spirit to give out.
Her last moment was cold and lonely, just as it was at the end of her true lifetime.
Or so she thought.
Music: Ever-present Feeling
"So you've awakened. Can you tell me your circumstances?"
Those were his first words.
When she watched the man with blank amazement
"Go home if I did a needless thing. If you wish for me to forget about this, I shall do so."
The tone of his voice never changed.
That was her first encounter with her Master, Kuzuki Souichirou.
Kuzuki was a strange man.
Should he be called a ghost?
He had no reason to live, but had no reason to die.
He was just there, and since he existed, he followed whatever whim took him.
He has no self.
That was her first impression of him, and she thought it would be easy to turn him into a puppet.
She grew to realize that the thought was a mistake.
Kuzuki Souichirou does not have a past.
He has no self because he has no past, but it does not mean Kuzuki Souichirou is empty.
Kuzuki was a sincere man.
He easily accepted her when she told him that she wanted him to be her Master and when she told him about her true identity.
When she asked him, "Do you believe such a story?"
He replied, "Was that a lie?"
He accepted it after she told him it was the truth.
She still considers it to be a miracle.
She would have disappeared before she woke up if she wasn't taken to the Ryudou Temple.
The Ryudou Temple is a demonic place for Servants, but it is a perfect summoning place once inside.
As the Ryudou Temple is surrounded by a boundary field, it is suited for keeping anything inhuman.
She was able to remain without disappearing because she was brought to the Ryudou Temple. Had it been anyplace else, she would have vanished after being taken there.
As a result, she obtained the best ley line and the best protection.
She easily occupied the Ryudou Temple, figured out the mechanism of the Holy Grail, and summoned Assassin as the fifth Servant.
But such things are trivial matters.
She was certainly lucky on that night.
Many miracles saved her, and she is now on the verge of victory.
But they do not deserve thanks. She would have been fine with it even if those miracles had not occurred.
There is only one important fact.
A very small matter that is trivial for anyone else.
For her, the fact that she was able to meet Kuzuki Souichirou is a miracle beyond belief.
Her Master will not be delighted with what she did.
He has never had an interest in the Holy Grail.
She would do her best to grant any wish of his, but Kuzuki Souichirou has none.
A one-sided relationship.
They do not get along well.
It is not going well at all.
"So the mummy hunter became the mummy? Even the rare witch is fragile, huh?"
She turns to the intruder.
It is not her Master that is standing there.
It is the knight in red, Archer, with his true identity still unknown.
Music: Wandering Shadow
" Archer. I thought I ordered you to keep watch outside."
"Yeah, but I didn't see any enemies around here. I got bored, so I came to check what was going on in here."
"Who knows. Don't you think I only wanted to break my contract with that Master? Don't you think I didn't care who my new Master was?"
There is some truth in Archer's words.
But what does it mean?
Archer had no intention of betraying, but betrayed his Master only because he wanted to break his contract with Tohsaka Rin?
" I see. So you did not like looking after that little girl? Well, it is true that Servants are dissatisfied with their Masters. It is natural for you to run out of patience with yours."
"No, she was perfect as a summoner. But some miscalculations occurred.
And Caster, let me warn you. Do not consider all Servants to be like you.
At the very least, Saber and Berserker were satisfied with their Masters. A righteous hero can only be summoned by righteous people."
" Heh, why tell me that now? A twisted Master calls for twisted heroic spirits. You do not need to tell me that."
That is right. Servants are determined by their summoners.
Summoners with dark shadows in their mind cannot summon heroic spirits who are on the light side.
"But it is indeed strange once I think about it. You and Rider are ones that oppose the heroic spirits. But you two are still summoned as Servants.
Well, the Holy Grail does not differentiate between good and evil. So I guess it will summon anyone with powers, huh?"
"Originally, a mixed spirit that had a heroic side would not have been called upon.
Things went out of order starting with the third war. Heroic spirits like Rider and I were not summoned before that."
That does not concern her now.
She is not concerned about the true identity of the Holy Grail.
Servant Caster's mission is to win this war.
She is not interested in what comes after.
No, to be honest, that is not the end she wishes for.
"Enough with the meaningless talk.
Get back to your station. I don't care what you're thinking. You are my Servant now. Your life is in my hands. Put that into consideration when you talk to me."
"Understood. Then I shall live up to my Master's expectation like an obedient Servant."
The knight in red goes up the stairs.
Seeing him off silently, Caster lets out a long sigh.
One more day until Saber surrenders.
She does not have the Holy Grail yet, but she will approach the end once Saber falls.
What will happen when the war ends?
Caster will make every wish come true with her powers.
It is not bad to live as a witch, like she swore before dying.
Her fate was confounded after the hero Jason appeared. When the Goddess Aphrodite who supported Jason realized that the King of Colchis was unshakable, she controlled his daughter Medea's mind and made her blindly love Jason. As a result, Medea betrayed her father and her country for a foreigner called Jason whom she had never seen before. Medea nullified her father's magic, and even the enchanted fire-breathing oxen, and allowed Jason to obtain the Golden Fleece.
Of course, the King of Colchis was infuriated, and personally led his army to capture Jason before he left the country. To assist Jason's escape, Medea was once again used by the Goddess. Medea boarded the Argo, which belonged to the man she loved yet only knew by name, and sliced her brother Apsyrtus into pieces right before the eyes of her pursuing father. The King was overcome by grief and ordered for the collection of the pieces of his dead son. Seizing that opportunity, the Argo escaped its pursuers, and Jason safely returned to his native land of Iolcus.
Returning to his native land, Jason asked for the return of the country as promised, but King Pelias refused, and formed a plot to kill him. Jason relied on Medea's magic three times to escape the danger, and Medea came up with a plan for Jason. They invited King Pelias to visit, and killed his servant in front of him. After reviving him with her magic, Medea offered to cast this spell of immortality on the king as well.
Jason and Medea arrived at Corinth, where they were welcomed by the king. Medea finally found peaceful rest in this land. This peace, finally obtained after her abduction and denouncement, did not last long. The King of Corinth took a liking to Jason, and decided to have his daughter marry him. Jason also chose the young daughter, and Medea was exiled.
Her actions after that were indeed those of a witch. Medea appeared at Jason's wedding and used her magic to burn all who attended including the king of Corinth and his daughter. Jason was the only one left alive. Her fate after she left Corinth is unknown. As her life was filled only with betrayal, it is said that the princess became a true witch and continued to roam the Greek lands.