• Member Since 19th Jul, 2013
  • offline last seen Dec 24th, 2017

Sanguine


T

As the Summer Sun Celebration approaches, Twilight Sparkle and the rest of her friends have plenty of their own problems to deal with. Ponyville is packed with tourists, and they've got to work themselves to the bone to make sure things go off without a hitch, and Twilight may just have the most important job of all.

But fate is about to take a turn for the strange, and soon those problems are going to be the furthest things from their minds. A magical ritual has begun in the land of Equestria, and it's not in any of Twilight's books. It's dangerous. It's destructive. And there's no getting out of it. It's called the Holy Grail War, and it's about to engulf the entire town of Ponyville.

Seven ponies have been chosen to be Masters, and Twilight is one of them. The other six could be anyone, which means Twilight doesn't know who she can trust. Their weapons in this war are called Servants, heroes from the myths and legends of a far-off world, and they're like nothing Equestria has ever seen. And this war has a prize: the granting of any wish the victor could possibly desire.

But there are a lot of unanswered questions. Where did this Grail come from? What secrets is it hiding? Who is the mysterious Servant who calls herself Ruler and does she have the answers? Twilight is going to have to figure things out, and quickly. Because this game was originally intended to be deadly for everyone who wasn't the winner, and if she makes even the smallest mistake, Twilight Sparkle might end up being a casualty... or even causing one.

Chapters (13)
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Comments ( 81 )

I anticipate great things from this fic. Could you please have Twilight and Ruler/Arturia be paired together plz?

Somehow I was not surprised that Twilight would get Saber. So is Shiroh/Archer going to show up in the fic?

Well...color me intrigued. :moustache:

Phew... Well, I'm certainly giving this story a favorite, there's no doubt about that. I mean, you're slapping ponies and the Nasuverse together; how can I possibly ignore something like that?

While I'd prefer to wait a few more chapters before offering an opinion on your writing, it seems to be pretty solid so far, with a good amount of description sprinkled throughout. The dialogue did strike me as a little stilted, but you managed to do a fairly decent job of pinning down all of the canon-character's personalities. As for errors, I think I spotted a few misplaced or missing commas here and there, but nothing flagrant enough to really annoy me.

Now, word of warning: The rest of this comment is going to consist of me mostly talking to myself about the workings of the Holy Grail War and how they might possibly apply to this story. The Nasuverse is just saturated with rules and I'm obsessed with it enough to dedicate a large amount of time to memorizing most of them, so odds are I'm going to be rambling on for quite a while. Sorry about that in advance. May contain possible spoilers to other works in the Fate franchise or, if I'm very lucky, this story.

First off, there's the fact that Arturia's been summoned into the Ruler class. A good choice, as she certainly fits the class requirements, but her inclusion leaves me a bit puzzled. A Ruler Servant has only summoned in the Grail War's secondary team-based format, to govern over the two opposing factions and make sure that they adhere to the rules and regulations of the War. But, according to this story's description, only seven Masters will be participating in this Grail War, as though it was following the primary free-for-all format. Presumably, this means that this War will be adhering to a new format, one that functions with only seven Masters but at least eight Servants. Certainly curious, and part of me is wondering if we'll see appearances by the other atypical Servant classes, like Avenger or Saver. I also have to wonder why Arturia agreed to be summoned into such a disadvantageous (at least for her) class. As far as I'm aware, Rulers aren't given the chance to actually win the Grail themselves, though I suppose that this new format might have changed that rule...

Next, I was pretty surprised to see Ruler using magecraft/magic. While it's probably safe to assume that her shape-shifting between her human and earth pony forms is just a skill granted by being summoned to Equestria, she clearly repaired Twilight's window with a spell. Which, considering that Arturia lacks the spellcasting Skill, is a pretty impressive feat. However, that flash of red light that accompanied the window's mending hints that she probably used a Command Spell to compensate for her own lack of talent at magecraft. One of the perks of being summoned as a Ruler, after all, is your own set of Command Spells. But that means that Ruler just sacrificed a Command Spell, a magical tool capable of working literal miracles, to fix a window. Unless she happens to have a limitless supply of them on hand (pun not intended), I really do have to question her strategy.

Finally, there's the big one: Arturia, an undeniably human entity, has been summoned into this War. This indicates that this Holy Grail (something tells me that it isn't the same Grail based in Fuyuki) is somehow connected to the human Throne of Heroes, as that's the only entity that Arturia's made a contract with. A part of me is trying to think about how a Grail that's presumably based in Equestria could connect to the human Throne, but the other part is just now realizing that the other Servants summoned in this War will be likely be human Heroic Spirits as well. Which means that we might be seeing old friends like Zero-Rider, Stay Night-Lancer, Archer, Zero-Caster, and Gil running about in Equestria and getting up to all kinds of shenanigans.

...Yeah, this certainly has the potential to be an awesome story.

Also, love the title! Amicitia est magicae, eh?

Wait, wait, wait, wait... you're gonna do a HOLY GRAIL WAR story... With an EVERYONE rating? Not to offend, but you do realize that the entire purpose of the holy grail war is to kill, right? Be it servants or Masters, people must die. Because, as you know, people die if they are killed. As for the chapter itself, not bad, I am interested in seeing just where you take Autheria's character. In what part of her history did she come from? Just died... Fate/Zero... Fate/Stay night, or any of the other routes...

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I wasn't really sure what to do with the rating system thingy. I'll bump it up to teen I guess. Not to spoil anything, but I'm not exactly planning to have a Gilles and Ryuunosuke pair in this story. The Masters are pastel pony people after all.

Then again... well, we'll just split the middle for now and see what happens.

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Alright then, Oh and did you hear the news? They're remaking Fate/Stay Night! Here's to hoping that they try to combine elements from UBW and HF in it.

Quite good, so far, I just have a problem with this thing - this tendency for fanfiction characters to break into people's houses to talk to them instead of just knocking. Eh well.
Also, I thought Twilight's deliberations about stories about real events and people was a good segue/metaphor/parallel/? to the legends of Heroic Spirits, but it lost its subtlety at “Hero… I wonder what it even means to be a hero…”
But the prose is decent (and if that doesn't sound like praise, I'll assure it is), the characters act like actual, sentient people rather than cut-out cardboard, and you haven't committed any giant grammatical abortions (some day I will find whomever first thought to write "could of", and remember: "perverted" is the past tense of a verb, not an adjective) so all in all, you're doing good so far.
Lastly, it's usually only Saber's left gauntlet that has the "mitten"-design, whereas the right has fingers.

Hector. Cool. Who hasn't read the Iliad, after all? Wonder if the Berserker is a bait-and-switch.
"surprise would be my only chance to reach you in private without attracting notice" - thought it'd be something like that.
As I remember it, not all Heroic Spirits are Counter Guardians, but that's probably not important.
First typo spotted: "Are so sure that there is not one "
Feels appropriately epic, looking forward to more. Thanks for the read so far and have a great day.

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Always glad to be intriguing.

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No comment on Shirou/Archer. But you can be sure this crossover isn't going to be entirely one-sided.

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I hope I can meet your anticipations.

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I have heard about that. Here's hoping UFO Table is as good with this as with Zero.

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I'm glad you found it mostly enjoyable. I was worried about stilted dialogue, but hopefully it'll be less of an issue moving forward. I've always found introductions in crossovers to be challenging because its easy to alienate half of the audience by writing about things in a way where fans of one work will get totally lost on stuff from the other work. Erring on the side of self-consciousness and self-reference is sort of how I try to address the problem. Of course, if you go too far it ends up being painfully pedantic. I hope I at least avoided that much.

I won't address your questions, but I'm glad I managed to perk your curiosity. Getting the Fate fans interested in what was going on rather than pissing them off with "rules violations" was the goal, and I seem to have gotten there with you at least. A couple of your notes did get addressed in chapter 2, so I'll look forward to hearing from you about it.

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Sorry I hit on one of your pet peeves by having Arturia just break into Twilight's house. At least based on the second comment her reason seems to have mollified you. Also sorry if the point where I went in-your-face on that story motif was a bother to you. I have a habit of running a sliding scale on this sort of thing, so that people who don't pick up on some parts will still get in on what I'm trying to do. Its something I picked up from Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan; the villain spends half the movie quoting Moby Dick to character's faces so that parallel is really obvious, but people who paid attention noticed that Khan also had Paradise Lost on his bookshelf, and the movie has a lot of parallels with that story that are a ton more subtle, but maybe even more numerous than the Melville stuff. To make up for it, I promise I will go out of my way to use "perverse" should the need to adjective in that way arise. No promises on "could of," though, we do have Apples running around.

As for the Counter Guardian thing, I was trying to keep the explanation simple, and since Arturia had signed up for Counter Guardian status herself is seemed natural that she would emphasize that part of being a Heroic Spirit. I at least tried to leave little bits in the conversation to make it clear she was oversimplifying and skipping over things.

Also, I can't help but feel I'm being damned with faint praise having my prose described as decent, but I appreciate that it was given in the spirit of a compliment :twilightsmile: And thanks for pointing out the typo, and my small error on the gauntlets.

YE GODS, a Fate crossover. I'll be reading this on principle.

Very interesting...

So ruler is a class? Was expecting Saber.

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WHAT.

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Ruler is a class that was introduced in the new Light Novel/canceled videogame project called Fate/Apocrypha. It is, as this story has tried to explain, a servant that serves the interest of the Grail War itself by acting as a sort of referee and doing the jobs the Overseer is supposed to do.

Stuff about how the Ruler works hasn't been fully translated, so I've had to take a couple of small liberties/make some assumptions, but the basic concept is sound.

In Apocrypha the Ruler is Joan of Arc. Here, not so much of course.

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Yeah, fate/Zero did so well that they're remaking it. Now rumors right now are saying that it might be a combination of all three Fate routs, which means that we'll have Archer/Shirou, Dark Sakura, and still have a shirou focused story.

Alright then, great chapter, loved the action and the fact that you've decided to throw in some new heroic spirits. I intentionally thought the black knight as Fate/Zero's berserker, but this new knight is interesting. Keep goin and stay golden^^

...she’d been running for nearly eight strait minutes...

While Saber engaged the new thread...

Huh... Hector as Saber? Had always pictured him as a Rider myself, but he certainly fits the requirements for Saber as well. Looking forward to a more detailed rundown on his parameters and skills.

A bit of the exposition in this chapter felt more than a little forced, like Saber's explanation of the Grail giving him knowledge or the Servant's ability to go into spirit mode. Then again, addressing the oddities and specifics of the Grail War are never easy to handle, especially if Ruler and the other Servants are going to be the only sources of information Twilight has access to. I just hope that she figures out how to use her skills as a Master soon; I want to see some stat sheets!

And speaking of the other Servants... As much as I'd like to take a guess at their classes and identities, I have to admit that I'm a little bit clueless at the moment. The Black Knight could be Zero-Berserker (at the very least, they have similar Phantasms), but the others are a bit more confusing. The warrior woman could potentially be Lancer, Caster, Assassin, or Rider. Shapeshifting weapons and combat skills that stand up to Saber's make her a bit hard to judge. As for the armored horse... He was smart enough to retreat when he had the chance, so he's probably not Berserker. Could be Rider, possibly Lancer if his axe is large enough to meet the class requirements.

So yeah. I'm certainly starting to get invested in the story.

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Ooooh, yeah, looking forward to that. From what I've heard, the new series will pretty much be a straight adaption of Heaven's Feel. It's going to be painful watching Sakura get all that screentime, but some of the route's more memorable moments (Kotomine, Nine Lives Blade Works, Kotomine, Ilya being adorable, Kotomine, and the final battle) should more than make up for it.

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Alright, let's see if I managed to pick up the juicy details.

Arturia mentioned that the other competitors would have to fight against her and Excalibur. Which implies that, even without a Master, she still has a chance of winning the Grail for herself. Pchoooo... Well, at least this version of her won't have Avalon; Excalibur and an unlimited supply of Command Spells make her more than enough of a threat for the other participants.

I think that Hector mentioned in the most recent chapter that the Grail wasn't meant to be summoned in Equestria. That, and Twilight's summoning chant still having a reference to Zelretch, makes it seem like this is in fact the Fuyuki Grail we're dealing with.

Which means that... Avenger...

Well. Shoot. Better get those Element of Harmony ready.

Whoa, you gave Twilight control of one of the Nine Worthies? Well, I must say sir, I did not see THAT coming, but I sure aren't against it, it make so much sense I'm surprised no ones done before!

Just 2 questions, 1: are any of the other Worthies gonna make an appearance? And 2: Will any of the servants from Fate gonna play a role here? (I'm mostly hoping for Shirou and Gilgamesh, but any of the others would do fine to.)

Infodumping is practically the bread and butter of any story that involves the Nasuverse. I should know. I wouldn't sweat it. :twilightsmile:

Given Fate is a series of Visual NOVALS, I wouldn't worry about the info-dumping thing, the series is pretty much MADE of the stuff, so you could argue it's just you staying true to the source material.:pinkiehappy:

Oooh what a delicious development. This should be fun. :pinkiehappy:

At least Rarity has some new inspiration for her fashion line.

Wow, rarity... you know it kind of makes sense. Her use of Gems is similar to Rin's and it does make for a pretty good connection. can't wait for more, keep goin and stay golden^^

Ooooooooh crud, well this is an awkward development. But hey, maybe its not as bad as it looks, afterall those two have been friends a long time, surely they wouldn't throw it all away due to something like this... right...?:fluttershysad:

I don't think they'd throw it away due to something like this. Just found, and loving, this story. Don't worry about Equestria Daily friend. We shall support you. Also, i'm not sure if anyone pointed this out or not, but, I have to. The new Apple Family member from the first chapter kids? Island Apple? Avalon was also known as the Island of Apples, or something close enough to it for my horrible memory. Now isn't that an interesting coincidence..... (cheerful music) ....This wouldn't been a point for dramatic music but my band is adamant about only cheerful music at the moment.

Nicely done! To think that Rarity would get rider... Well I understand that it would make since, since Rider is usually the servant to get the second most backstory and screen time when focusing on them. Medusa and Iskandar being prime example, I can't wit to see just what you do with this next chapter, keep goin and stay golden^^

P.S. Shoutout to UFO table for doing the Heavens Feel rout! Can't wait for that to happen!

Mixed feelings on this chapter, to be honest.

It's certainly fantastic seeing this particular Rider show up again, and I can't wait to see her get some more action scenes. And all things considered, you're actually handling all the info-dumping pretty well; the little section on skills was informative without being too intrusive on the rest of the chapter.

But Twilight's reaction to Rarity seems to be incredibly out of place. Granted, I'm not sure when exactly during the show's timeline this is all taking place, but I have to assume that Twi's been in Ponyville for at least a year now, give or take a few days. And she just assumes that one of her best friends is planning on killing her? Better safe than sorry, I suppose, but apparently all those friendship reports about trusting your friends and relying on them haven't exactly resonated with Twilight.

I am liking Rarity's situation though. Here's hoping she manages to pull through mostly unscathed.

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In terms of Timeline, this takes place in Season 3. The upcoming Summer Sun celebration is Twilight's 2 year anniversary of moving to Ponyville.

As a side note, the timeline of Season 3 is a little weird because Just for Sidekicks and Games Pony's Play happen simultaneously but have three episodes between them, so we know the season isn't purely chronological (but then, none of the seasons have been). All I will confirm is what the text had confirmed: that Twilight has lived through the events of Wonderbolts Academy, and she's not an Allicorn so it's not yet up to Magical Mystery Cure. Any other timeline confirmations will have to wait until they are relevant.

As far as Twilight's reaction to Rarity, if you recall she never actually says or thinks that she suspects Rarity is plotting to harm her. Rather, she avoided confronting that thought.

I've tried to make Twilight follow a logical emotional arc in terms of the psychologically damaging suggestion that other Ponies might be out to harm her: first outrage and anger at the suggestion of the possibility, then gripping terror and paranoia when that possibility becomes real after Archer's attack, and now that reality has resulted in a perceived betrayal by a friend, the worst possible outcome. Her reaction to that was first instinct, to make the threat go away. I tried to make it quite clear that she wasn't thinking at that moment (and even then, her concern wasn't about the danger Rarity posed, but the danger her Servant posed). And when she did start thinking, she intentionally avoided thinking about Rarity and focused on the most mechanical activities she could in every subsequent scene, to the point of borderline cruelty. She's gone from fear to denial.

Twilight does have some very specific feelings about Rarity right now, but even she isn't really aware of them. They'll come out when the situation comes to a head, that I can promise you. For now, I was trying to show that she was very set on avoiding the issue.

Its possible that part of the problem with you or any other reader's perception of Twilight in this chapter is that the progressions between feelings have been very quick in terms of chronology. Twilight's been on something of an emotional roller coaster since she's taken this journey over the course of only 48 hours and a few chapters. It's a by-product of the fact that I've been writing this story as more of a serial than a novel without even noticing. I was actually thinking talking about that might make a neat blog post or forum thread, but either way, it's just sort of how things have happened.

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I do have to admit, I completely forgot to think about the mental gauntlet an event like this would toss Twilight through. Being thrown into a battle royale and told to kill off the competition can't be good for anybody's sanity, let alone someone as neurotic as Twilight. And, after going back and rereading the beginning of the chapter, I did notice that she specifically avoided thinking about what Rarity might do, so apologies for getting that wrong. My fault.

So yeah, Twilight's reaction was quite a bit more reasonable than I had first thought, and her slippage into emotionless thought was wonderfully played out. However, I still don't believe that she would have handled the situation by pushing all of her friends away.

With Fluttershy and Spike, it's understandable. They're outsiders to the War, and Twilight would be breaking the rules and potentially endangering them by telling them about it. Even more than ensuring her own survival, she wants to make sure that they stay safe, so she does everything in her power to push them away.

With Rarity, however, it's less understandable. Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but doesn't Twilight's refusal to think about her or address the situation in any fashion show that at least part of her thinks Rarity might be planning on harming her? If she was only worried about Rarity's Servant launching an attack and wanted to protect Spike and Fluttershy, then it'd make sense for her to drive Rarity off initially, sure. But refusing to contact, or even think about Rarity afterwards? For me at least, that's crossing the line from simply being paranoid and into simply abandoning one of her friends. Seeing potential enemies in every shadow and unfamiliar face is one thing; deciding to ignoring everything she's learned about the past two years and the show's central theme is quite another.

But like I said earlier, my first assessment of the chapter was wrong. I still don't quite trust it, but it's certainly valid enough that I'm willing to take it with a grain of salt and wait for more. Apologies for being overly and incorrectly critical; I'll do my best to avoid doing so in the future.

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Please don't stop being critical, I can't improve if I don't get criticism. You're perfectly entitled to your opinion if you think I've gone beyond the bounds of the character or if I've strained your suspension of disbelief too much with how I'm telling the story, and I appreciate that feedback so that perhaps I can do it better next time.

All I can say is that (without going into what is happening in the future) it was important to me even at the earliest conceptual stages of the that Twilight be in a position of isolation and at odds with Rarity at this point in the story. I tried my utmost to construct a narrative in which that result would be reasonable without taking either out of character, and the path I thought made the most sense given Twilight's character was some emotional battery and a key misunderstanding resulting in an mental shutdown.

I will concede that this arc might have been easier to swallow at an earlier point in time. I mainly constructed the concept around how she acted in episodes like Lesson Zero, It's About Time, and Canterlot Wedding. Twilight has a history of reacting poorly to high stress situations and taking things into her own hands, putting herself at odds with her friends when she perceives them to not be on her page, or at the very least disregarding them in pursuit of her goals. I don't think she ever really grew out of that part of her personality even though it didn't get showcased in Season 3, and I felt that the way I had her react to what she perceived as a conscious betrayal during an emotionally vulnerable moment was in line with that.

But again, that was all just the opinions I used as the basis for the story and you're free not to agree.

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Wait, they're doing Heaven's Feel? I thought they were redoing the original anime series?

Ah well, HF's the only one not to get an animated release in some format. Was hoping for UBW but I can deal with this.

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Well the series is called Fate/stay Heavens Feel (I think) and I personally think it goes well with everything that was shown during Fate/Zero. Honestly, can you look at Sakura in the original series without wondering just what the f*ck is going on with her life at home? And Saber, damn it's gonna be awkward for us and her when Shirou reveals his last name to her and she had to pretend like nothing is wrong...

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True, one of the major 'failings' of Zero is that it had to tie into the plot of Stay/Night, which was a good 'Game' but as an anime needed a lot of work. As such, due to it's overall 'darker' tone, it isn't hard to see how the 'Heaven's Feel' Route is considered the Canon ending by most of the fans prior to Hollow Ataraxia (Ilya being alive supports the Fate route), though I personally prefer Unlimited Blade Works.

The original Anime attempted to do a fusion of all three, but it still leaned heavily Towards the 'Fate' Route. The Manga adaptation seems to be doing a better overall job of bringing the Three Routes together, though since Tokyopop went under we'll have to make do with scanlations for now.

All in all however, I admit I'd prefer to see the anime follow a mostly Heaven's Feel Route, though I wouldn't say no to Shirou learning UBW, either from Archer's arm or fighting the Counter Guardian.

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Yeah, that's something we can hope for. Although Ufotable is pretty good with giving the fans what they want, and if enough people are calling for a tie in to UBW, I'm sure they could squeeze a bit in there. All I really want to see if the confrontation between Shirou and EMIYA. That was done really well in the UBW movie, and given UFOTable's darker tones, I'm sure it can be done even better here.

Plus, I really want to see the awkward tension between Saber and Shirou, especially now that we know what Saber and Kiritsugu's history is like. I'm interested in seeing how they'll lead that relationship into the famous threeway scene with rin (Also, it' it BS that the F/SN anime had a dragon replace the threeway scene? You know what I'm thinking about when I hear sex? Dragons!).

YES, you haven't given up the story! Thanks for making this crossover, it's awesome

Trixie? You... gave Berserker... to TRIXIE?! How the hey does THAT work?!

:trixieshiftright: Because I'm awesome.

Quiet you!

Trixie getting Berserker.... Well, Berserkers are the, pure power, screw everything else class. So that fits her. No idea who it is but haven't really gone to the trouble of checking. Still following this. Just doing poorly in the whole life area so not a lot of time. Still wish Twilight had gotten Arturia for her Saber, but that's me being persnickety.

YES, chapter update. I hypothesize that the one speaking to rider is a caster of some sort? Actually, I kinda hope that caster turns out to be medea or the fate extra caster. Nontheless, great chapter, you capture the feel of both series quite well.

If you've watched Fate/Zero, I think it's rather obvious who Berserker is.

And speaking of Zero, I've just got to know, is Saber in this story the same guy who was Fate/Zeros Rider? I have a hunch but I just want to be sure.

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Saber in this story is Hector, Prince of Troy, who lived around 1200 BC. Rider in Fate/Zero was Alexander the Great from around 300 BC. Saber does, however, use a one-handed sword not too dissimilar from Rider's. Rider's sword is called a Spartha and made if iron or steel, while Hector's is the much older Naue II Type, one of the oldest models of metal sword ever discovered, and is made of Bronze. It looks something like this:

http://www.salimbeti.com/micenei/images/sword155.jpg - Actual Naue II Type sword
http://www.wulflund.com/img/product_gallery/bronze_sword_replica_hallstatt_g1.jpg - Modern Recreation

As far as Berserker goes, you'll just have to see if obvious translates to correct :scootangel:

3974631 But... aren't Iskanda and Alexander the same guys? I mean, I googled the guy and the result said FZ Rider was know as Iskanda AND Alexander the great, soooo... yeah.:rainbowhuh:

Just found this, but don't have the time to read.:ajbemused:

Nevertheless, I saw your group post and with the ratio of votes and the positive comments, you have earned a fav, BUT not a vote...that comes later.

That said, I can't wait to read this when I get the chance. :rainbowwild:

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Yes, Iskander was another name for Alexander the Great, that is correct. It was the name Rider was called by most often in Zero.

But Saber in this story isn't Iskander, his name is Hector. He's one of major characters in Homer's epic poem The Illiad. He has nothing to do with F/Z's Rider.

3975451 Oooooh, He's HECTOR the great... I must be tired or something to have missed THAT!:facehoof:

Sorry dude, my bad.

og lancelot it seems that your madness took a dip after arthur beat you in f/z

Well so far the list goes:
Twilight - Saber
Rarity - Rider
Trixie - Berserker
? - Archer
? - Lancer
? - Caster

Onwards toward writing sir! :moustache:

4019249 whoops totally forgot about that... (^_^'))

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