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[Fanfic] The Martyr

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Karai-san's picture
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Ahaha...I'll wait patiently...Good luck on the tests..(IDK Ap test..What's that??ahaha...)Oh..father and daughter..who're those?ahaha!I got to keep watch for the update...XD

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A/N: I'm back from isolation! Sorry for the long wait but hopefully this chapter can be accepted as a token of forgiveness XD!

Spoiler:
Chapter 7

"I don't get it. Why does Nanoha even feel guilty about something she hasn't done yet?" Vita asked, looking back at the events that had taken place hours ago. Since their master had yet to return, the knights sat in their living room, each pondering over their own thoughts. Vita had been the first to break the silence that had been created. Shamal sighed, trying to find to right words to explain.

"Izumi-san's scar," she began, "was not the product of a typical wound. Usually, magic itself doesn't leave a trace, it's a clean shot, in and out. Any injury it causes heals naturally. Only under certain circumstances, when the intensity of the attack and distance between the attacker and the recipient are just right, can magic ever leave a scar. And when it does, it also leaves magical residue, which is similar to DNA. It's unique to the mage who created it. The recipient isn't just physically scarred, but magically as well. In a sense, it's as if they were branded by the attacking mage. Once that happens, any being with a drop of magic in them will be able to sense the magical residue if they know how to find it. They could even decipher who's residue it is if they have felt the mage's magical aura before. So, if any magical being can sense the magical residue, imagine how the one who branded the person with it would feel. Time doesn't play a role in such a case. The present Nanoha can feel it just as much as the future Nanoha, hence her guilt for injuring Izumi-san."

The silence grew once more, but before anyone could get used to it, the knights heard the front door of their apartment open.

"Why are you all still awake?" their master asked, a ghost of a smile on her tired face.

"We were worried," said Zarifa as Hayate patted him softly.

"How's Nanoha?" Vita asked but Hayate simply shrugged.

"What about Izumi-san?" asked Signum but regretted it the moment a look of worry was cast on her master's face.

"I don't know... that girl refuses to let anyone in, and its killing her. I want to help her but there is only so much I can do," sad Hayate, sounding defeated which was rare to hear. "Let's get some rest. Yuuno-kun should have some information on this Izumi Toshio tomorrow."

*******************

"So you mean to tell me that the man we're looking for is one of the TSAB's most honorable veterans?" Yuuno Scrya could only nod at Chrono's speechlessness. Having been keeping in touch with everyone involved and being the reason the case had been kept under wraps, Chrono had been up to date with the latest news on the 'Magical Surge' case and one of the four people to first hear about the potential enemy. He was also informed on the identity of a certain time traveler.

"But... How?" Hayate asked, trying to comprehend.

"He was one of the head researchers for the TSAB and one of the reasons our technology is so far advanced. But it's odd..." Yuuno said through the screen, "Its says here that he went missing after returning from a study that took several years, which doesn't make much sense since the study was successful."

"So he just disappeared? Is there any information on why?" Carim asked while sneaking a glance at the blonde next to Chrono, who seemed deep in thought.

"That's what bothers me. It states that a couple days after coming back, he turned in a form of resignation and left. Whenever the TSAB tried to contact him, he would always ignore them. Soon they just gave up on him. No other record of him has been created since then, even as a common citizen of Mid-Childa. No bank account, no address... nothing."

"Is there still a picture on file?" Fate finally asked. "Assuming that he still lives here, maybe we have seen him, just under a different name."

The picture that Yuuno brought up on screen caused three out of four pairs of eyes to widen. Glaring before them stood a picture of a tall good-looking man with blond hair and familiar burgundy eyes.

So this is where Fate gets her looks from, Hayate thought while meeting Chrono's gaze.

"Well I can see the resemblance," Fate commented, causing Hayate to almost lose her footing and Chrono to choke on his drink.

"W-what do you mean?" Hayate asked nervously.

"Well look at him. Only a fool wouldn't be able tell that he's Hikari's grandfather."

Carim tried to hold back a giggle while the others tried to regain their posture. Oh you fool... Ignorance truly does make the world less complicated.

*********************

"Mama?" Nanoha looked up from her desk to see a rather worried Vivio.

"What is it, Vivio? Is everything alright?" Vivio nodded but timidly walked up to her mother's surprised yet welcoming arms. She took a couple seconds to cherish her mother's warmth and scent before finally speaking.

"Mama, are you alright?" There were millions of other things she wanted to ask and tell her mom but for some reason, whenever she had the chance, she couldn't find the words, like something inside her was preventing her from including her mothers in her recent discovery. It was as if something inside of her didn't want her to tell her mothers... at least not yet.

Nanoha hesitated to answer. Was she 'alright'? She tightened her hold on her daughter, fearing a future that loomed over them... a future that would turn her into a monster. Or at least someone who was able to instill enough fear in Izumi-san to allow her to show it. Nanoha still couldn't get rid of the memory of those burgundy eyes, filled clearly with fear and hate. The question wasn't who she was going to lose, it was when. Her family were supposed to have been already dead according to the soldier from the future. Would the girl in her arms be next? Her heart felt an icy grip just at the thought.

"I love you Vivio. I will never let anything happen to you," she said and the little girl looked up at her with adoration and trust that is only seen when a child is with their mother.

"... Even if it means working with Kari?" Vivio couldn't understand why her mom didn't like Kari, but Vivio had promised herself that she would make them be able to at least talk to each other without one of them leaving the room with anger or distrust. If Kari was really her mom's daughter, then that meant that she was her younger sister, and Vivio had to look out for her family.

A small grin appeared on Nanoha's face. "You really care about that girl, don't you?" She ruffled the girl's hair and stood up. She held out a hand for Vivio and began to lead them to the training arena. As they got closer, they began to hear the clanging of swords, which only meant one thing.

"Let's see what that twerp from the future is many out of." Nanoha said, winking at Vivio, who grinned at her mother's words. Her mother was slowly learning to accept Kari. She knew that with the two of them on the same side, nothing and no one stood a chance.

************************

Signum grunted as the swords met again. Though she would never admit it, the girl was good... Really good.

"I was trained by you," the said girl stated, reading the knight's mind. Damn it! I hate that smug smirk! inwardly yelled Agito, her frustration growing. She thinks she knows everything! Signum would have chuckled at the tantrum if two swords weren't menacingly close to her neck.

Hikari narrowed her eyes as she tightened her grip on both of her swords, using the force of the clashing weapons to push herself away from Signum, creating enough distance between them to successfully execute a long range attack. She held out the Roman sword on her right, the long blade engraved with Latin scriptures and a ruby diamond glistening on the black hilt, and aimed it at her opponent.

"Apollo, Infuria Fiamma (Raging Flame)!" she yelled while she did a jagged motion in the air, causing a red magical circle to appear and with a flaming beam growing each passing second.

"Sì, signore" the device responded, signaling her to finish, which she did by slicing the circle in horizontally in half, releasing the beam at Signum, reaching the target at an incredible speed.

Signum struggle to put up and keep her shield to protect herself from the attack. The force of the girl's blast had pushed her to the ground, causing her feet to sink into the earth, the land not able to withstand the strength of the attack. Signum looked up at the girl in awe, noticing that although she was slightly out of breath, Izumi-san was not even close to her magical limit. How much magic does this girl have?

A safe distance away, Teana Lanster and Subaru Nakajima watched with astonishment as sparks of purple and red smashed and chased each other through the grounds and sky. The rest of the group had already seen the young warrior fight so just enjoyed the show of lights in front of them.

"We have to fight her!?" Subaru whispered to Tea, feeling her confidence slipping. She was quickly shushed by the private who was trying to take as many notes of the unknown warrior, quickly going over several tactics to use when confronting her.

The group heard the sound of sliding doors and turned to see Vivio and Nanoha, the former walking to reach her other mother who picked her up in her arms and the latter immediately focusing her eyes on the blazing red dot that was flying through the air, blocking and dodging all of Signum's attacks.

"How long have they been fighting?" Nanoha asked.

"Almost two hours," Teana replied, disbelief evident in her voice.

"Alright guys, that's enough. Come down here, we have to talk." said Hayate, calling the two mages over.

Vivio quickly left Fate's side once she had a clear view of Hikari. Hayate caught Chrono's eyes and both had to hold back a laugh as the younger girl pestered the time traveller, complaining that she shouldn't fight for so long. Hayate noticed Hikari smile at her sister lovingly, not minding being bossed around by a five year old, happiness truly reaching the elder girl's eyes for once. If only Vivio knew how much that girl needed her older sister pestering her like this... how much it means to her.

"Ok, everyone," Chrono started, "You have all been briefed on the situation so I won't waste time reviewing it. We finally have a face to place on our enemy," he held out a headshot of the said suspect. The tension in the room changed when the picture was shown. Teana's eyes widened, recognizing the man that her brother had once spoke of with such praise. Nanoha scrutinized the picture, trying to engrave the face of the possible murder of her family.

"Kari?" Vivio said, breaking the silence, looking up the soldier who looked pale and shaken, her eyes glazing over as memories flashed through her mind...

"Let me go!" the young girl shouted, tears rollling down her cheeks as she useless fought the powerful man's painful grip.

The man laughed. "Really now! Is that anyway to react to your grandfather?" He gripped her tighter causing her to yelp in pain. His laughter was abruptly stopped by a beam of yellow electricity just missing his head by a millimeter. The girl could have cried of joy right them and there. She saw her mother fly toward them at frightening speed, pure rage present on her face. She struggled harder against the man, becoming more and more desperate to reach her mother.

"Mama!" she yelled, feeling a burning sensation from within her. Suddenly, she heard a shout of pain behind her and was released from her grip. Not wasting time she ran to her mother's waiting arms, sobs shaking her small frame as her mother tightly wrapped her arms around the girl, as if to shield her from any more danger. She was too disoriented to see the army of soldiers entering the ship.

"Kari-chan, listen to me!" her mother began urgently, "You have to get out of here. Nanoha-mama and Hayate are waiting outside on another craft. No matter what you hear or what you see, do not look back. Just keep going, understand?" the little girl nodded, but felt an even worse fear grip her. Why wasn't mama coming with me?

She felt chapped lips press against her forehead as her mother trembled to let her go. Although she didn't realize it at the time, the wetness she felt from her mother's parting kiss was not sweat but tears. Tears of what the mother knew the child would go through once she made it out. What she was forcing her daughter to deal with alone... a woman she has loved for years, a woman who was no longer the same girl who wanted to be her friend... Burgundy met burgundy one final time, one desperately hoping for her mother to come back safely, the other desperately begging for forgiveness and understanding. Fate caressed her daughter's cheek, giving her a brave smile that would forever be with the girl.

"Be strong Hikari, for all of us." Kari nodded, and turned. She hesitated for a second, feeling the tears appear again. But even with her blurry vision, she began to run, run toward freedom, toward another day. All the while leaving her strength, her safety, her Fate-mama behind.

Once she reached the entrance, she saw her other mother and Aunt Hayate waiting for her like she was told. She jumped off the ship to them, wanting her mother to hold her like she used to, only to be caught by her aunt, who then flew in front of Nanoha.

"Nanoha, we have to leave."

"No."

"Nanoha, we have to trust Fate and take Kari back-"

"NO!" Kari cringed at her mother's tone.

"Head back to base Takamachi. That's an order."

Nanoha gave them a look of anger and began to fly towards their craft but an explosion made them freeze...

Nanoha shook as she turned to the destroyed airship in disbelief. The shock that had overcome her quickly turning into despair. She flew past them toward the wreckage.

"FATE!"

Hikari could only watch as her broken mother looked through the falling ship, her own burgundy eyes wide. Hayate let out a shaky breath, tightening her hold on the young girl. But Hikari didn't feel warmth from the embrace... she would remain cold for a long time.

"Mama" she whispered...

"Kari?" Hikari felt a hand grasp her clenched fist, knuckles white. She looked down at the girl and gave her a small smile, trying to keep those memories locked up. She looked to Chrono and nodded in confirmation, that was the man they were after.

"The machines this man has created are unlike any we have ever faced. But since we have Izumi-san with us, she will be able to teach us how to face these machines. Starting tomorrow, you all will be reporting here at 0600 hours to begin the training. Understood?"

"Yes Sir!"

*****************************

"Nanoha, Fate's still alive. There's still hope-"

"Shut up..." Nanoha muttered, taking another sip of her drink. Hayate sighed. Ever since Vivio's death, Nanoha had changed, but Fate was the one person who could bring the old her back, even if just for a while. She shared a look with Lindy, who too, shared her feelings.

Hikari had been staying with Lindy ever since the incident. Nanoha hadn't spoken to her daughter in months and it pained Lindy to try to explain to the young girl why her mother refused to take care of her. Nanoha spent all her time at the headquarters and never stopped searching for her lost love. For her to even be here was a huge step.

"Nanoha-chan... Hikari really missed-"

"Don't," Nanoha began, "You don't get it... She looks just like her... I can't. I just can't."

"Fate isn't gone yet! Do you hear your daughter? She's laughing outside and playing with Arf! Arf wouldn't be here if Fate were..." Hayate couldn't bring herself to say it.

"I feel her, Hayate. All that he makes her go through... all the torture. I feel it everyday. She's going through hell and I can't do anything. I can't even find her!" Nanoha slammed a fist against the table in frustration.

"She would want you to not give up on her or your daughter... Nanoha, you're not the only one who's lost someone. Hikari loves Fate too," Lindy replied, unfazed by the woman's outburst.

Nanoha's eyes softened slightly, "She really does... They were inseparable. Even I was jealous..."

It might have been small, but the two women felt relief when they saw a weak smile on Nanoha's face. But of course... hope in this time of war never lasted long.

The three women stood, hearing the sound of a young girl yelling. But what she said was what made them freeze.

"Arf, wake up! Arf!"

Hikari woke with a start. She felt moisture on her face and found her cheeks wet with tears. She walked to the bathroom and wiped her face with cold water, as if that would make the painful memories go away. She sighed when she looked at the time. The sun had yet to rise, yet here came another night with no rest. Even when she meditated, memories were still making their way through to her mind. She went back to bed and stared at the ceiling,

I'm trying to be strong, Mama... but maybe that's not enough.

Alicia Edit: I put it in a spoiler for you so it wouldn't take up the whole screen. Other than that, WELCOME BACK! And its about time you continued this! XD

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nice to have you back hitomi, also nice chapter, I personally loved the hole "Fate" thing XD, was really good, the story is getting really good, waiting for the next update!

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Welcome back! Good update, very dramatic. We know what happened to Fate, now. Also, poor Nanoha, having to tangentially experience Fate's suffering.

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That was excellent! Hitomi, this is most likely one of my favouite fanfics of all time. Keep it up and I can't wait to see the next chapter.

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Welcome back and great update, so sad, but I really like how the story goes.

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Love this fic.
And of course I hope next update will come soon.

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Welcome Back ! And nice update, now we know why Future Nanoha was harsh with her daughter, and that Fate's death leaved a huge impact on both mother and daughter.

For Nanoha, Vivio's death break her, and Fate's loss was the final strike that shattered what remains of her old self.

It was cute to see Vivio trying to reconcile her family. :3

I'll look forward to the next chapter !

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Welcome back Hitomi-san, nice update too. I was hoping for an update the other day, and it came~ T.T I'm crying tears of joy. I'm very glad with the update too, it had every expectation I thought it would...the only problem now is, I want more xD

It was kind of sad when Nanoha, was avoiding Kari-san because she looked like Fate-Chan. I almost cried at the last part though, I really hope Arf fell from another cause. I don't want Fate-chan dieing like that. Hm...either or, I can't wait for the next chapter, hopefully more questions are answered, and more memories are revealed.

I also wonder if Kari-san can change the past, make it so the events that would happen in the future wont happen. Maybe people wouldn't have died or so on. Though if she does manage to change it...the future would also change...>.> Gosh, I have so much on mind from reading this xD Good luck with the next chapter!

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Chapter 7 is an excellent read. Very intense and emotional. I like the explanation given regarding magic-induced injuries as related to Kari's scar. The mystery regarding Fate's father (and why he turned evil) is very engaging. I eagerly await future updates to see if Kari and gang manage to "save the future" from such tragedies.

NanoFate fans please don't send me hate mail... I promise to turn back into a ferret and leave Nanoha (and her waifu) alone XD

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A/N: Hey guys! Here's the newest chapter and safe to say the longest chapter I've ever written... ever! Let me know what you think!

Spoiler:
Chapter 8

Fate's jaw tightened as she looked at the large board in front of her. Izumi-san had stood next to it, her face grave. If one would have told Fate that the dates written on the board were the times of death for all her comrades present in the room, she would have laughed. But seeing the dark bags under the young soldiers eyes, she suddenly felt the urge to grabbed her lover's hand, who complied by tightening her grip. They both weren't worried about their own dates, but of their precious child who was peacefully sleeping at home.

In six years... She would be eleven... Fate thought, looking at her wife, who had gone pale, sharing a similar thought. After taking note of another date, a chilling thought reached her, Nanoha would be alone...

"I know that it is hard to look at and accept, but keep in mind that this is what could happen," Izumi-san then drew a red line over the earliest date on the board, February 19th. "As you can see, the Takamachi family is alive and well. Just that has changed future events, but that also means that Izumi knows that someone's on to him. Hence why he is releasing his machines earlier than before. That is where I come in. Most of the deaths on the board were caused by machines like the one that appeared on un-administered planet #97 the other day. These machines are unlike any the TSAB has ever fought before." Izumi-san then projected on screen a design similar to the machine that Fate recalled fighting, only slightly more complex.

"The machine that appeared on Earth was merely a prototype to the machine we see here. Although there have been machines and droids that have been able to become immune to magic before, there was usually a control center that could shut down that feature in all the droids, correct?" Fate nodded in agreement. "Well these droids don't. There's no way to shut down the field down because these machines were built with no control. Once they are turned on, there is only one way to turn them off, which is destroying them."

"Then how does Izumi control them?" Teana asked.

"He programs them with an objective before turning them on. Once they are on, they won't stop until the objective is complete and destroy anything that gets in the way. It doesn't matter what side they are on. If they get too out of control that his own life is threatened... well, who knows better how to destroy them than the creator himself. The trick is us knowing how to destroy them ourselves. Everything has an Achilles' heel right? The droids are no exception. In order for their bodies to be extremely resilient to magic, they have to have an area, no matter the size, that is extremely weak against magic. That is what we called the 'heart' of the droid. Once found and hit, a droid will ultimately be destroyed. What caused so many deaths was that these 'hearts' are not the easiest to find and at the time, we didn't know where they were," Izumi-san explained.

"But once found one droid, wouldn't it be in the same place in all the others?" Hayate asked.

"Izumi had thought of that and once one droid's 'heart' was discovered, he would release a new model, with the 'heart' located in a different place. The only way we could have discovered where the 'hearts were, was fighting the droids. Luckily, I brought with me the blueprints of all the model that he used in my timeline. This will give us an advantage but not a great one. We are dealing with a genius, so if he were to notice that we know all the weak points, then he would create new models that even I haven't seen. Our time is limited and we have to be able to reach and capture him before it runs out. If it does... then these dates might as well have happened, because death would be the only outcome in that situation." The gravity of the situation felt heavy as all the members of Sector Six realized just how many ways they could seal their fate.

"Then I guess we'll just have to not let that happen," said Nanoha, staring straight at Izumi-san, who smirked at Nanoha's determination.

"I guess so."

***********************

"Good work everyone. That will be it for today," said Hikari, who chuckled at the chorus of sighs of relief. Slow and painfully, members walked, or for some limped, out of the arena.

Hayate walked up to her, she herself out of breath, "I have to give it to you. I haven't been this tired from a training before."

Hikari grinned, "Maybe you're just out of shape. You aren't getting any younger, you know."
"You little..." Hayate got her in a headlock, giving her a playful nuggie, a mischievous but familiar glint in bother their eyes.

"Whose the old one now?"

"Okay, okay... still you."

"Hey! Don't make me bring out the costumes because you know I will,"

"She's not kidding," said Vita in the background.

The two stopped when they heard laughter behind them and turned to see Vivio giggling at them, while Fate struggled to hide her chuckling. But what caught the time traveler's attention was the laughter of the woman on Vivio's other side. Hayate, noticing the younger girl's shocked expression, suddenly remembered what the girl said the other day...

"Mom didn't smile much."

She tightened her hold on the girl, but before she could do anything else, she felt someone's gaze on her. She looked up to see a pair of mix-matched eyes, looking at her tentatively, and then flickering back to the girl in her hold.

What is that girl up to?

**************************

"Izumi-san?" Hikari turned to see Shamal the arena as the final members left.

"Yes, Shamal-san?"

"I was watching you all practice and couldn't help but notice something." Now Shamal looked a bit unsure, causing Hikari to remember another doctor who always seem unsure to ask something when there was a possibility of hurting a person's feelings. The memory made her heart ache, missing the said doctor's presence.

"What is it?" She pressed encouragingly.

"Why does your tattoo glow when you use magic?" It took Hikari a second to figure out the doctor was referring to.

"You mean my mark? Well... That's a question that even the you I know can't figure out. As you can tell I don't use your typical intelligent device. Instead of carrying them through necklaces or rings, the ones I use somehow joined with me. All I have to do is call on them to appear, but for some reason, when I don't use them, they join my magical core. After my first time using them, they join with me and I felt a burning on my arm. Next thing I knew, I had the mark and when ever I used magic, it would glow. The more I use, the brighter it gets." Shamal still seemed troubled which made Hikari nervous. The real reason why she was the way she was and why she even had two instead of one device was because before she had them, she was magically unstable. The only way to keep her from losing control and putting the lives of herself and others in danger was if her devices joined her magical core and act as restraints to her full potential. Her greatest strength was also her greatest weakness, as reaching her full potential would destroy her. Apollo and Athena marked her so she could be aware of how much magic she used and not overdo it. She could stay separated from the devices just as long as she didn't use magic and kept her emotions in check. The last thing she wanted or needed was for the others to think she was unstable.

"Have you tried asking your devices?"

"All they say is that it's for my protection. I guess they just want to be there if I ever need them," Shamal seemed to accept Hikari's fake theory, but still seemed troubled. Then Hikari realized just what the doctor really wanted to ask, and it didn't have anything to do with the mage's 'tattoo'.

"Don't worry about the research. I promise that even though you won't be able to give it to them for Takamachi-san's birthday, you will be able to give them a perfected one before their anniversary next year," a look of relief passed through Shamal face as she thank the girl, who couldn't help but think if she was indirectly responsible for her own birth, since she had just given Shamal the extra push she needed in order to complete her invention.

An invention that was the reason why Hikari's existence was even possible.

***************************

It didn't take long for the attacks to begin. First, they started to appear in un-administered planet #97. Obviously, Izumi just couldn't get over his failed attempts to murder the Takamachi family. But soon, other planets began to get involved. Hayate groaned as she entered her office, taking note of all the paperwork missed call notices on her desk. She had just turned enormous droids into piles of scrap metal and she still couldn't get a break. She sat down and began to make the necessary calls first.

"Ami-san? How's the tracking going?" She heard Ami sigh.

"It's going... We managed to shorten our list of possible areas, but there is still much left. He really hid the headquarters well. Does Izumi-san have any idea of where it could be?" Now it was Hayate's turn to sigh.

"She's able to tell me who her parents are and when I am going to die, but refuses to make my job easier by telling me where his location was in her timeline. Apparently, he had a previous base before the one she knows of. She is also certain that there is no possible way that he could be at the base that she knew of."

"Well, the list is shrinking with the release of more droids, but if we keep at the pace we are going now, then we'll run out of time."

"I'll talk to her and figure out our next move. Keep me posted."

"Roger." Hayate put down the phone to see Rein float into the office, her usual smile absent.

"Meister Hayate... We have a problem."

"Another one?" Hayate said sarcastically, but felt bad when Rein winced at her tone.

"It's-" But Rein was interrupted by a tall, good looking man barging into the lieutenant's office.

"No need for introduction Chibi. She knows exactly who I am and what the issue is." Hayate held back a groan when she heard his smug voice. She turn to the man, feeling extremely irked.

"Don't call me 'Chibi'!" But Rein was carelessly ignored by the man who took a seat, his impish grin suddenly disappearing.

"What can I do for you Admiral Collins?" His sudden change of demeanor was no surprise to Hayate. Although his arrogance was known throughout all the sectors, he didn't reach such a high and powerful position in the TSAB for nothing. When needed, Admiral Jeremy Collins could be the most efficient and reliable leader. On top of that, he was also a skilled mage. What did ignite curiosity in the lieutenant was what caused him to actually seek her help. Her feelings towards him weren't one-sided.

"What's going on Yagami? And don't play dumb because you know exactly what I'm talking about." Hayate tightened her jaw. Meeting his clear blue eyes, she spoke.

"None of your business, Admiral."

"The hell it isn't!" he replied, his frustration quickly growing. He never was able to keep his temper in check. "Do you remember the most recent planet those things attacked? Chrono couldn't hide it from me when I was informed that my house was half destroyed!" He paused, taking a deep breath in order to calm down.

"Listen Yagami," his voice now much quieter. "I don't care about the house. What I care about is the woman who was in there when it happened." Hayate held back a gasp, fear griping her tightly.

"Don't tell me Mai-"

"She's fine. Both her and the baby are fine. The shock of it all was what was most damaging. Shamal-san's making her stay overnight at the hospital just incase she gets too stressed. Mai was telling me that it was thanks to one of your mages that she made it out unharmed, so I knew that you were in charge of the case."

Hayate sighed in relief. The only reason she even bothered with the Admiral was because his wife happened to be a very good friend of hers. Although Hayate always said Mai was too good for Collins, but they were happy together so who was she to stop them. And despite her dislike of the man, she had to admit that they made a beautiful couple.

"That's why I demand to know what's going on, because next time she might not be. And for all this to happen while she's so close to her last trimester..." He ran a hand through his light brown hair, showing his distress. This was when Hayate began to feel guilty. For as long as she knew, Mai always had a weak body, but when Collins and she got married, she wanted above all else to have a child. But whenever the couple tried, it always ended with her having a miscarriage. This time though, they really had a chance, and the pregnancy was going smoothly, thanks to Shamal intently watching over Mai's progress.

"I can't tell you everything," she began. "But I'll see what I can do. I'll have to talk to some of the other members. For now just know that we cannot fail... we can't afford to. I hate to sound cliche but everyone's future depends on it.."

"So the rumors are true..." he whispered. "There's a time traveller in your squad... and their not the bearer of good news."

Hayate's eyes widened, "Rumors?!" she exclaimed.

"Relax... no one believes them. Do you have any idea how many stories are going around to explain what's going on. I was just lucky to guess it right, judging from your reaction." The phone began to ring, which caused the two to return to the matter at hand.

"Listen Admiral, I don't time for this. I'll see what I can do about Mai, maybe have her stationed here where Shamal is close by. But I can't waste any more time, please see yourself out." Collins stood, but before he reached the door, he faced the lieutenant once more.

"Can you thank the mage who saved my wife for me. I don't her name but Mai said she had a scar or something."

Hayate froze, remembering how during the battle, Hikari had suddenly gone pale, and raced towards the Admiral's house, fear evident on her face. Does Hikari have some kind of connection to Mai? If so, what? The questions just increased the pain of the headache that seemed to get worse with each passing event.

******************************

"Why are you making such a scary face? It doesn't suit you." A gentle hand caressed her cheek, but she couldn't meet the woman's eyes. Those blue-green eyes that were able to look into one's soul were too much to handle at the moment. Instead, she sat at the edge of the bed, her face in her hands, trying to forget the conversation she had just had... One that might as well been the last with her mother.

The blonde's smug façade disappeared, her expression now one of worry. She knelt in front of the younger woman, putting her hands over the other's. No matter how many times she tried to break the silence, she could never find the right words, so she just stayed in place, ready to provide the girl with whatever she needed.

"Why..." she heard, barely above a whisper. She felt her hands get soaked, and looked to see tears escape Hikari's eyes. "Why does she do this? Why do I even care anymore?"

"Kari-"

"Maybe I deserve it," the sudden interruption made the blonde freeze, feeling a sudden pain and fear envelop her heart at Hikari's emotionless tone, no more tears falling from her now cold eyes. "It's my fault that she's like this... my fault that they're dead... my-"

"Stop it!" she screamed, instantaneously grabbing hold of the girl, her face pressed tightly to Hikari's chest. "It's not your fault, you idiot!" She let out a shaky breath, her fists tightening their hold on Hikari's shirt. "I don't care what she tells you.... She's wrong, Hikari! How can you not see what she's doing to you? All that abuse! I don't care if she's your mother, no one should treat you like that. If she wants to get herself killed then fine... but don't go down with her! Please... I-I know I'm being selfish, but please... don't leave me-"

A hand stopped her rant, wiping the tears rolling down her cheek. She looked up and met the burgundy eyes that had always seemed to mesmerize her on the spot, the eyes that could easily fill her heart with love and pain, eyes that had seen too much war to really know any peace. But before she could react to the pain and sadness that always seemed to obscure any other feeling, the pain and sadness that had always been in the mage's eyes since meeting her years ago, Mine (A/N: Pronounce mee-nay) felt her lover lips on her, desperate but loving, seeking for something right in this wrong world. She let herself be taken, knowing that their conversation wasn't over, but all the while cherishing the love from the other. She was now her back, out of breath and staring up at Hikari, burgundy eyes shining in the darkness. Hikari lowered herself, pressing her forehead against Mine's, enjoying the closeness. She almost grinned when taking note of the blonde's growing need to be touched, her impatience becoming noticeable.

"I love you," Mine stated, but instead of replying with words, Hikari simply brought her lips down to meet the other's, finally succumbing to their mutual desire.

Much later, when both were wrapped in each other's arms, did Hikari speak once more. Gently running her fingers through her now sleeping lover's hair, she whispered the words that she never could manage to say to the other woman when awake. The words she feared that if heard, would cause her to lose another person in her life, one that she could not live without.

"I love you too..."

******************************

Hikari grunted, blocking an attack that was not directed at her,

"If you're not going to fight then head back now!" she yelled behind her, but the woman didn't reply. She saw two pink beams break through the droid, causing it to self-destruct in seconds.

"Happy now?" a cold voice taunted from behind her as the White Devil flew past her, toward the new batch of droids that appeared. Hayate flew next to her, a worried look mirroring her own.

"Don't worry, I'll cover her for you. I won't let her get herself killed." Hikari looked at her gratefully, and began to look for the mage they sought. An electric blue beam narrowly missed her, bringing the mage into view, smirking at the sight of her. She didn't even let him speak, not in the mood for his comments today. Swords already in hand, she went straight for him. He laughed as he dodged the attacks, which only angered her more. Why was he so cocky today?

"You know, you both have the same temper. I guess it's in the genes-" He comment was cut short as she was able to get a slice at him, making him yell in pain.

'We want him alive, Hikari!' she inwardly heard Hayate say.

He pulled his fist back, which began to glow blue, ready to strike. But before he could finish the attack, a red flame hit his side, sending him to the ground. Hikari silently thanked Apollo, who caught on to her plan of distracting him with her attacks to be able to get a clear shot.

She began to descend, preparing to arrest the mage. Once he came into view, she could see the fear in his eyes as he began to take in the situation. She pointed the tip of one of her sword at his chest and began to recite,

"Tate Anastas, you are arrested for several accounts of abusing magic and being an accomplice of the wanted Izumi Toshio" Suddenly Anastas's fear disappeared, an arrogant grin growing on his face.

"It's been fun Takamachi." Before Hikari could even react, the mage disappeared, along with all the droids. Hikari looked up to meet Hayate's gaze, both stupefied by what just happened.

An emergency call began to ring as a screen popped in front of Hayate, a blood soaked Shamal at the other end, tears in her eyes.

"Calling all sectors! TSAB Medical Base is under attack! I repeat, we are under attack! All men are down-" An explosion was heard in the background and the screen turned to mesh.

'He was a decoy' was the one thought running through each soldiers mind. Hayate faced her squad ready to give orders when she felt a rush of warm air, as a stream of red left her and the team behind.

"Hikari wait!"

******************************

Nanoha took in the destruction of what was once the TSAB Medical Base, not feeling an once of... anything. They had found Shamal alive but unconscious, her being the only breathing thing found from the scene. She felt a hand on her shoulder and looked at Hayate, who's eyes seemed to be searching for something.. or someone. Nanoha looked ahead and found just who Hayate sought. She shook Hayate's hand off and walked toward the girl, who was on her knees, deadly still. Her burgundy eyes on the body in front of her. Anger evoked in Nanoha, as the scene reminded her somewhat of the loss of her own lover. She spoke quietly, so only her daughter would hear.

"Well I guess it's your fault she's dead too. But for loving someone like you... she deserved it." In mere seconds, two sharp swords came dangerously close to Nanoha's neck.

"Take it back..." It began as a whisper, but when Hikari looked up at Nanoha, tears streaming down her cheeks, face contorted to one of pure rage, but eyes gleaming with agony, her whispered words turned to shouts, grabbing the attention of the others. "TAKE IT BACK!"

The two stood still, the only movement was that of the wind, blowing their hair. They gazed at each other, not as mother and daughter, but as two strangers... as two enemies. The magical energy could be felt surging from the younger mage. Before either of them could do anything else though, a hand was placed on top of one of Hikari's swords.

"Enough," Hayate stated, "Nanoha, head back to the base, now." her tone was not one to mess with, so the emotionless White Devil turned and walked away, soon disappearing as Raising Heart finished the teleportation spell.

Hayate turned to the girl in front of her, who's hair was now covering her eye. She was biting her lip so hard that a trail of blood was running down her chin, mixing with her tears. The swords hit the ground, with them came the young mage, on her hands and knees, her shoulders silently shaking. Hayate tightened her fists at the sight before her, feeling anger and sorrow, one thought on her mind.

Hasn't she suffered enough?

******************************

Hikari knocked on the door, and heard a soft voice calling her to enter. The sight that greeted her was that of a pregnant, blonde haired woman, with blue-green eyes that took her back down memory lane. Mine... If you could see where I am now, she thought.

The woman began to speak, "I'm sorry for calling you here... I just wanted to thank the person who saved my daughter's life." As she said this, she rubbed her protruding belly. Hikari felt warmth, realizing how close she was to her future lover.

"How do you know it's a girl?" Hikari asked, playing dumb.

"Call it a mother's intuition... The real question is, how do you know?" Mai Collins had a gleam in her eyes, enjoying the mage's reaction, as if she had just been caught with her hand in the cookie jar.

"What do you-"

"Wasn't it you who asked while we were flying to the base if she was alright?" Hikari remained silent, not knowing how to respond.

"So how is my daughter in the future?" Hikari looked up, eyes wide.

"How did you-"

"There are a lot of rumors flying around to explain what;s happened. You just happened to confirm one of them. That and I have never seen you before. For you to be part of one of the most prestigious sectors, but have no history of ever working for the TSAB is rather odd." Mai seemed proud of her reasoning as Hikari sat down on a chair near the bed.

"Hikari Izumi. Nice to finally meet you Mai Collins."

"What do you mean by 'finally'?" Hikari remained quiet for a while, but then stood up and headed for the door. "I'll be on my way now."

"Izumi-san," Hikari paused, her hand over the doorknob. "Please... Tell me about her. Tell me about my daughter."

Hikari sat back down, and remained silent. Then, when Mai was going to ask again, she began to speak.

"She was stubborn. Arrogant,. Proud. She always had to be right."

"Sounds an awful lot like my husband" Mai smiled.

"But once one got passed all that, they could see that she was passionate, kind, and would do anything for the ones she loves. When she smiled... when she laughed... Everyone would stop to look at her. She was beautiful too. Looked just like you." Hikari stopped, feeling a lump grown in her throat.

"You loved her, didn't you?" Hikari didn't reply, but they both knew the answer.

"She's going to grow up without me, isn't she?"

"After you give... you will become extremely weak. She will be almost a year old when you pass." Mai smiled sadly, already somewhat knowing that it was going to happen. This time, she didn't stop the time traveller from leaving.

"Spend as much time as you can with her... Love her as much as you can," Hikari said before reaching the door. "You might think she won't remember, but trust me... She will." Mai stared at the mage, a knowing look in her eyes.

"I would have given my approval of the two of you." Hikari smiled, thinking of how badly her lover wanted to hear that. Nothing else was said, signaling the mage's departure.

As Hikari walked out of the hospital, feeling better than she had in months, she saw Vice and Teana walking towards the hospital. Both were looking in opposite directions, a faint blush on both their cheeks. Hikari smirked, wondering if she should meddle or not. Clearly, her aunt had influenced her... and not in the best way.

******************************

Hayate sneezed.

Nanoha and Fate decided to take a break from it all and go on a date, which meant Hayate was stuck babysitting Vivio, not that she minded. Even though she had hoped for a little break too.

"Aunt Hayate, can we have ice cream?"

"But we're about to have dinner!" Hayate exclaimed.

"Is that a no?" Vivio asked, giving Hayate an adorable look that only five year olds seem to master. Hayate groaned.

"Your mothers would kill me if they find out." Vivio pondered for a bit.

"Okay then. If you give me ice cream, I will wear anything you want for the rest of the night." A strange gleam appeared in Hayate's eyes.

"Anything?" Vivio nodded.

"Deal." And so there they were, eating ice cream and wearing the outfits of the Sailor Senshi from Sailor Moon.

"Aunt Hayate?" Vivio asked, putting her bowl down.

"Yeah?"

"You know that Kari's my younger sister right?" Hayate choked on her ice cream.

"Ehhh!"

langrisser's picture
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Nice chapter, I feel sorry for Hikari, she lost her lover, and Nanoha insulting her memory makes her a heartless mother, just like Precia. It's ironic, they were both kind and loving person, before the loss of their most loved ones.

Now, Hikari know her future mother-in-law would have accepted her. :3

I wonder why she's magically unstable.

I love how little Vivio have her way with Hayate, and how she surprised her at the end. XD

Looking forward to the next chapter !

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Hitomi, one of the best damn stories I have evar read and definitly one of my favourites as well. I just want to say thank you for doing an outstanding job on this chapter and I hope you keep up all the hard work you are putting into this for our future enjoyment here at NanoFate.

Courtesy of my friend Laevantien -- http://raventhesilence.deviantart.com/
Currahee
We stand alone, together

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I have to agree with Captain. I was surprised to see the new chapters you did. I was wanting on fanfic.net for a while for you to post something. I think I even sent you a message. LOL. I'm I'm happy. There were I few times I almost cried. I think the instrumentals that I was listening to was contributing to my sadness as well. I can't wait for the next chapter. This story is AMAZING.

Hitomi's picture
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That's funny because I was writing the chapter, I listened to instrumentals too! :) Thanks the support you guys!

ninryu's picture
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Joined: 05/21/2010
Posts: 133

wow. you're one awesome writer.
then Hikari is a biological mix between Nanoha and Fate? explain why she's super strong.

Honulicious's picture
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OMG langrisser is right!! nanoha became monstrous like precia!! but i guess anyone would after loosing so many loved ones in a short period of time. i'm confused at how old hikari was when she lost vivio and fate. because it seemed like vivio died at 11 yr of age and fate when hikari was still young. maybe i forgot, since it has been a while, but did you mention if the war went on for a really really long time??

hmm how is fate related to that traitor?? she was a clone...was he really precia's husband??

Honulicious

Nanonymous
Nanonymous's picture

Hey..nice chapter..aahhha...I love it..hmm..so kari..and mine..nice one too..tsk..the mai's death is unstoppable..i think..even when kari is in the past...vivio is so sharp for a 5yr old..yep..-karai-san

A.
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I didn't have the time read the latest two chapters of this fic until now, but I finally did it and I still love it as much, if not more than ever. You are doing a great job Hitomi, this is honestly one of the best fics that I have read. I'll be hoping for Hikari to change the history and to reach the good end that she deserves, hopefully with her family and Mine still by her side in their new future.

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Posts: 514

Wow, Chapter 8 is simply amazing, Hitomi-san! I'm happy to see that Kari's lover has been unveiled. I'd love to read more about them in future chapters. The plot is very interesting, and your story-telling skill is top-notch! I love Vita-chan's cameo in this chapter -- the one who must've suffered the MOST from Hayate's cosplay fetish XD

NanoFate fans please don't send me hate mail... I promise to turn back into a ferret and leave Nanoha (and her waifu) alone XD

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O.O! i really like this fic, it catched my attention from the beginner, I want to read more soon, please continue!!!!!

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I cant wait more to read the update,maybe I'll just have to traveling through time to read the update XD...Great fic hitomi sensei!I cried many times when the sad part happened,its makes me feel to stop reading it but I know I will be the foolish NanoFate fans if I stop following the stories :D.please update as soon as possible hitomi sensei >__< !

Nanonymous
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please continue

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Please Update