Fan Fic: From Fake Dreams

My body is made of blades… Fire is my blood… and Glass is my heart… Through countless battles I forever wait, alone on the hill of blades… For Hell's hands to bear… For Heaven's hands to temper…
Emiya Shirou

In the aftermath of the Fourth Holy Grail War, Emiya Kiritsugu was content to live out his final days with his newly adopted son Shirou. However, he found himself beset by strange dreams, dreams that told him the results of his incomplete training of Shirou's magecraft. As a result, he knew that he had to prepare for the future. For a Holy Grail War that was approaching fifty years early.

From Fake Dreams is a Fate/stay night Alternate Universe Fic written by Third Fang, author of the incredibly long Yet again, with a little extra help Fan Fic. The story follows the Magus Killer as he seeks to have Shirou properly trained in skills for the upcoming war, and then Shirou as he tries to make sense of the world of Magi he's been thrust deep into.

This fanfiction series contains examples of:

  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: Shirou's Natalia blade is one even without its instant-cut effect.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: Shirou, who doesn't seem to realize that Rin has feelings for him and consistently takes her at her word. This causes...a little friction. Being "distorted" (as in canon), this is unsurprising.
  • An Arm and a Leg:
    • Shirou accidentally cuts his arm off in one of his projection experiments.
    • Bazett gets her lower legs blown off by a landmine.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: One done by Luvia in chapter 40, as a proxy in a very peculiar example, since Rin Can Not Spit It Out. This confuses the hell out of Shirou who finally pieces together some things.
  • And I Must Scream: Marjatta Edelfelt gets put in suspended animation and hooked up to a huge prana generator to essentially be used as a supplementary wand for Caster.
  • Arc Villain: Louvre, the tenth Dead Apostle Ancestor, gets his own arc in the years before the Holy Grail War.
  • Artificial Limbs: Bazett loses her legs in the encounter with Assassin. Fortunately, Lancer and Merem are able to fix that. She now has a pair of preadolescent Banshees for legs.
  • Asshole Victim:
    • Shinji gets turned into a zombie after a trip through the sewers, finally dying completely when he gets his head blown off by an Origin Bullet.
    • For Marjatta Edelfelt, see Humiliation Conga below.
  • Awful Truth: Rin finds out that there are downsides to forbidding Archer from lying via-Command Seal: though he was keeping things to himself for his own purposes, there are some things he kept from her to avoid hurting her. Like Sakura's childhood and his execution. Which she attended...
  • Back from the Dead: Kiritsugu as Assassin.
  • Badass Biker: Saber on a thaumaturgically pimped-out 1999 Suzuki Hayabusa.
  • Badass Creed: Not finished yet, but he's close to Unlimited Blade Works:
    My body is made of blades… Fire is my blood… and Glass is my heart… Through countless battles I forever wait, alone on the hill of blades… For Hell's hands to bear… For Heaven's hands to temper…
  • Badass Teacher: Kuzuki has been sparring with Shirou.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: The story lacks a central villain, although the main contenders appear to be the Kotomine/Gilgamesh duo and Evil!Caster.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Shirou to Illya, even though he's (technically) the younger one of the two; saving her from being sacrificed for the Grail is one of his main goals for the Grail War.
  • Big Damn Heroes: The event itself isn't shown, but Bazett shows up just in time to save Shirou from the vampire that is about to kill him. Lampshaded by the author when Shirou says he "didn't expect anyone to come in and be a big damned hero!"
  • Bigger Bad: Altrouge Brunestud; although she's uninterested in the war, she sent one of her enforcers to Fuyuki to keep an eye on it.
  • Black Swords Are Better: Shirou's most dangerous sword, Kiritsugu, is made entirely of black metal, blood-red stains and brown veins notwithstanding.
  • Blasting It out of Their Hands: Rin does this to Louvre, shooting the Mace of Odo to multiple characters' surprise. Justified, as the mace is weak to anything non-magical.
  • Boring Yet Practical: Assassin may not seem much. Caster does say that he doesn't have any impressive spells, and he really doesn't. He's "boring" because he's cold, is efficient, and does not fuck around. Since he uses modern weaponry, he's the only Servant who who can act during the day, and he can snipe anyone without suspicion of magic. On defense, if anyone dares try to siege your base, his traps and skills ensure that they'll be SORELY defeated.
  • Cain and Abel: As in canon, Illya wants to kill Shirou.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Shirou's inherited magic crest ends up being a Game Breaker against Louvre: Time magic, combined with the Origin Sword Maiya, equals a way to bind a vampire's personal timespace to the Gaian timeline, thus nullifying his pesky healing factor. Shirou is now considered not only a major threat to magi all around, but the threat he represents to magi-turned-Dead Apostles (and eventual threat to weaker Dead Apostle Ancestors is held to be even greater.
  • The Chessmaster: Aside from the usual Betrayer!Caster, Kotomine and Zouken, another player has suddenly come into light. Who? In an unusual move, it is Shirou. That's right, oblivious, Naïve Newcomer Shirou. Thanks to his father's dreams, he's become one of the war's biggest power players. As a demonstration of how good he's gotten, he was able to make Kirei help him kill Zouken when the opportunity presented itself.
  • Clueless Chick Magnet: Shirou has managed to get Rin, Sakura, and Luviagellita all wanting him without even trying (or noticing).
    • In the case of Luviagellita, it happened at two seperate occasions, once when repairing her car, and then a second when he met her under shroud in the clock tower.
  • Cool Bike: Having learned from his father that Saber was good with a motorcycle in the fourth Grail War, Shirou gets her one for the fifth. It's a custom-upgraded, nitro-boosted, heavily enchanted 1999 Suzuki Hayabusa that can do 350 kmh (40 kmh faster than the stock model) without using the nitro. She loves it.
    • Up to Eleven: The bike could have been even cooler, but the advanced enchantments require one of the standard five affinities to cast, which Shirou doesn't have. Who knows what will happen if he can get Rin or Sirius (who have all five of the standard affinities) to further upgrade it?
    • The Suzuki Hayabusa was cool even before being enchanted. Why? Not only is the maximum speed higher than normal bikers can manage (prompting motorcycle producers in the entire world to put electronic limiters so that no other motorcycle can go over 300 kmh, thus avoiding accidents when these monsters get into the hands of anyone who isn't a champion), but the bike is balanced, sleek and efficient, has good turning and excellent acceleration, and can be easily customized. As the author said, "if there was ANY series of motorcycles that had the potential to become a phantasmal existence at some point in the future, it was without any doubt the 1999 Hayabusa."
  • Cool Sword: The Origin Swords are Game Breaker material, to be blunt, to the point that Shirou could easily become The Dreaded for other Magi. Bazett tells him upfront that if he ever makes her list of targets, she'll kill him before he can use them.
    • Natalia: This sword actualizes the concept of "severing". If it so much as touches a living being with less than C-Rank magic resistance, the target will be instantaneously cut in half. The same goes for inanimate objects unless they are too big, in which case it's simply an Absurdly Sharp Blade.
    • Maiya: This sword actualizes the concept of "binding". It binds things (note that the binding effect happens AFTER it makes a cut), including alterations, magic circuits, and souls, improperly, effectively screwing over anything that can split itself apart, use familiars, or add something to their very core. A unique thing about Maiya is that if it causes an injury then the wound will bind itself improperly causing severe necrosis, as it works on a molecular level. So, any injury cause by this blade can't be healed even with magic. Also, thanks to Shirou's Time Crest, he can now bind Dead Apostles' personal timelines to the "normal" timeline, neutralizing their healing abilities.
    • Kiritsugu: This sword actualizes the dual concepts of "severing" and "binding". It Severs and Binds just like the Origin Bullets and the two blades mentioned above, but combined with the curse of Angra Mainyu, it hits the traget down to the very soul. Hitting someone's magecraft or essence with it can cause the target to literally lose the memory of the spell that was hit. If it hits them directly... Well, let's just say even Roa wouldn't be able to escape it. Louvre finds out just how terrifying it is, the hard way.
      Shirou: Sacrifice and save, blade of the cursed hero. Kiritsugu!
    • Of course, the biggest problem with the Origin Bullets? They are bullets, and therefore limited in ammunition. Here we have three monstrously powerful swords, and Shirou's Hyperspace Arsenal ensures that he has unlimited copies of EACH of them. In terms of being Anti-Magic, Shirou has truly surpassed his father in potential.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • Marjatta, being a Rich Bitch Magus, assumes this will happen when she goes to face Sakura in Chapter 25. In practice, it's pretty even for a while. She has to have her Servant save her from going through a worm bath, and then Shirou shows up mad as hell and armed with Gae Dearg, which is an Anti-Magic spear.
    • Lancer and Bazett get taken out in five seconds in their first round against Assassin.
    • Rider and Archer find themselves on the receiving end of one in Chapter 28 when they run into Assassin.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Sakura, as a protagonist, can wield anti-mana shadows in battle.
  • Dead Man Writing: Kiritsugu left behind letters to be read by Shirou and others once the the fifth Heaven's Feel goes into swing.
  • Deader Than Dead: The final fate of anything hit by the Origin Blade Kiritsugu. The souls can't even go through reincarnation!
  • Death by Adaptation: Shinji bites it after running into Louvre's son. Not that anyone actually complains...
  • Deal with the Devil: Shirou is forced into one with Zouken regarding the War and Sakura.
  • Did You Just Scam Cthulhu?:
    • It's more like bargaining, but Shirou manages to get a better deal on his end should he agree to being Lorelei's "dog." Sirius, Bazett, and Waver are not happy he risked his life that way.
    • More of this in chapter 40 : Shirou successfully ropes Lorelei in covering his back after being outed by Kirei, and taking his first steps in protecting about everyone he cares about, with 1) contacting her ahead of everyone and letting her know more of the truth than anyone will get access to 2) the very attractive prospect of having several Servants to command 3) a very strongly implied threat that if Lorelei dares touch his Protectorate, he will gamble everything to smear the achievement of her life. This is impressive in its own right because it's a double instance of Staring Down Cthulhu, where Shirou actually threatens to HURT an Eldritch Abomination to HOLD IN CHECK his very badass boss. This is more this trope because it was actually used as a bargaining chip to ensure no one gets flak from Shirou's machinations.
  • Didn't See That Coming:
    • Waver Velvet's plan to rescue Sirius runs afoul when Louvre uses his newly-acquired weapon.
    • Shirou is offered both a scholarship under the Queen and the role of the 10th Dead Apostle Ancestor.
      • The Queen seeks to use him as a public enforcer for this reason and awards him a Noble Color for his advancements.
    • Because of Ore Scales, the Edelfelt sisters summon two Medeas, one as a princess, and the other as the familiar witch.
    • Caster didn't expect to be confronted by Gae Dearg:
      The last thing that confused her was that normal humans were not supposed to have Noble Phantasms, yet the single red spear that had pierced through her barrier, her cloak, and her body without any issue was without a doubt one.
    • Shirou finding out that Assassin is neither Sasaki nor one of the Hassan-i Sabbah. For that matter, any of the contenders finding out that Assassin uses modern weaponry.
    • Lorelei has quite a few of these in chapter 40 : Emiya Kiritsugu being Asassin, Shirou nearly outright threatening her to destroy her life's achievement if she dares touch his Protectorate, then him offering her control over several Servants.
  • Disc One Final Boss: Louvre serves as the antagonist of the pre-war arc, before biting the dust; as far as the Holy Grail War goes, it's Zouken Matou.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Chapter 39 illustrates what happens when people try to intrude on Shirou's holy ground (the kitchen) despite repeated warnings. The first signs of this prompt Mass "Oh, Crap!" from everyone around who know Shirou's priorities and mechanics: he values his kitchen above his workshop, and he will NOT tolerate intrusion when stressed out of his mind and needing the relief. Sella learns this firsthand on the receiving end of a very soft-spoken Tranquil Fury speech with an Implied Death Threat.
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap:
    • Not that Shirou needs one, but Chapter 24 has him take on the Command Seals of Rider. The logic behind this has yet to be determined but it is most likely that Zouken wants to make Shirou weaker.
    • Another self-enforced example is leaving the Origin Sword Kiritsugu with Illya.
  • The Dreaded:
    • Assassin gradually becomes one within the Holy Grail War as the other contenders find out about him. He has pitiful physical stats, but he's so good at what he does that his battle with Rider and Archer is completely in his favor, with Rider and Archer only surviving because he let them go. Justified by him being Kiritsugu, an expert at killing powerful magi and Dead Apostles using only basic human ability and preparation.
    • Shirou is shaping up to follow in his father's footsteps as "The Second Magus Killer" after killing Louvre. This is not necessarily a good thing.
    • Humorously, drunk/sick Taiga.
    • Gilgamesh is so strong that anyone in the War who knows about his existence fears gaining his attention, and even after years of preparation Shirou doesn't want to fight him, even with Saber and Berserker backing him.
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: What kicks off the entire story. Kiritsugu basically sees all three routes, the Multiple Endings, Bad Ends (sans Tiger Dojo), and the life of the Shirou who became a Counter Guardian. Rin is technically doing this as well, since she's seeing Archer's life.
  • Enigmatic Minion: Assassin to Witch!Medea. Considering that it's Kiritsugu, this is a given.
  • Entertainingly Wrong:
    • Archer thinks Rider is still Shinji's servant, not helped by Rider referring to her Master as male. He's soon corrected when he talks about Shinji, and Rin "reminds" him that Shinji has been dead for a couple of years.
    • Likewise, Rin still thinks her Archer is the future version of the Shirou she knows, rather than an Alternate Universe version.
    • Kirei and Kiritsugu are having a field day with Witch!Caster in chapter 40, with a lot of cryptical lines, the implications of which are completely missed by her.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Archer is one of the most ruthless characters in the story, much like he was in the source material, to the point he's willing to kill his own allies if it means furthering his goals, but even he balks at the thought of telling Rin about Sakura's childhood in front of other people, and he flat out says that he respects Saber too much to reveal what he knows about her back-story and the circumstances behind her pseudo-Servant status. Lampshaded by Luvia:
    "At the very least, it is refreshing to know that there is someone that you won't backstab."
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Actually averted by Witch!Caster in chapter 38 in a very surprising show of Genre Savvy when, after getting thwarted time and again and this time being cornered in a very uncomfortable situation, she finally takes the time to think through things and put herself in Shirou's shoes, figuring out his motivations, and realizes heroes truly are predictable.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Assassin, whenever he uses magecraft, methodically says whatever he's going to do with it. If he wants a firestorm at twenty meters around him, his incantation will be, "Firestorm. Twenty Meters." Just as efficient as the rest of what he does.
  • Fate Worse Than Death: Rin, Luvia, and Princess!Medea all consider Archer's fate as a Counter Guardian to be this.
  • Female Gaze: Archer deliberately invokes this in chapter 38, prompting three examples of Luminescent Blush from the women in the room. Doubles as a Crowning Moment of Funny.
  • Finagle's Law: Shirou needs to recover from having Sakura's Command Seals transferred to him. Just as he is about to get some rest, the Edelfelt sisters choose to attack the Matou household. The ensuing battle drains his prana reserves up to the point that his Dead Apostle blood comes to the fore.
  • Flaming Sword: Louvre's son has one with blue flame that drains od on contact.
  • Foregone Conclusion: Seeing as Kiritsugu saw all the routes, and considering his letter to Saber, it is possible that he wrote letters to Rin and Sakura as well.
    • All but confirmed — Chapter 37 starts off with his letter to Illya, fully explaining his actions, why he wasn't there for her, and then gently requesting that she take care of her brother.
  • Foreshadowing: Sirius tells Louvre that he's unable to make the best anti-magus Mystic Code he knows how because the materials no longer exist and he doesn't know where the ones he already made with them are. Louvre is skeptical that he doesn't know where their owners are, but Sirius says one's owner is dead and the other hasn't had an owner yet. The materials are Kiritsugu's bones with his origin in them, and the weapons made with them are the Thompson Contender and Origin bullets owned by Kiritsugu, who's now dead, and the three blades that are bequeathed to Shirou but haven't been given to him yet.
  • For Want of a Nail: Kiritsugu has premonitions in his dreams of the events of all three routes in Fate/stay night and of that Shirou's life and Counter Guardian-ship, and plans accordingly, starting with actually training Shirou in magecraft and attempting to prevent him from following the ideals that led him down that path.
  • Freak Out: Rin becomes mentally unstable upon realizing EMIYA became a Counter Guardian.
  • From Bad to Worse:
    • Chapter 33. Everything seems to be going great for Lancer and Princess!Caster in their fight against Assassin and Witch!Caster. Then, the Witch uses a Voodoo Doll made from Bazett's severed legs to take control of her, forcing her to attack Luvia. Then, Rin and EMIYA show up. EMIYA deploys Unlimited Blade Works and opts to kill everyone (which causes Rin to realize this is definitely not the Shirou she knows). Then Assassin's identity gets out, shocking EMIYA so much that he's unable to stop Assassin from firing an Origin Bullet into the ground of Unlimited Blade Works.
    • Shirou's attack on Ryudou Temple not only fails to take out Witch!Medea or Assassin, it allows the former to steal Rider from him, giving her control of half the Servants in the War. (Though, it can be hard to argue this as bad, seeing as Witch!Medea only has one Command Seal left, and all three Servants she has under her command want to kill her, not to mention Assassin hates her even more for using him as bait for his own daughter. The situation only gets worse for her when Shirou points this out, almost ensuring that every single one of those Servants along with all her enemies will do whatever it takes to make sure she wastes that last Command Seal.
      • Chapter 38 shows this is a bad thing, hinting at even worse things, because it gave Witch!Caster a trove of information about what Shirou knows about the war and what is happening around it, namely the corrupt Grail, Gilgamesh, and Zouken. This allows her to finally understand what it is Shirou is trying to achieve.
      • Chapter 39 ends on the note of what Caster most likely did since it was the only realistic option in her position: spilling the beans to Kotomine that Shirou is not being a rule-abiding contestant and that he wants to bring the ritual to a standstill or outright stop it. Facts: there is an official summon at the Church from the moderator. Conjecture: Caster spilled the beans. Very likely threat: Gilgamesh is on his way to Shirou's place.]]
    • Chapter 39 shows that the Clocktower has confirmation that Kotomine is hiding stuff. Plus, Shirou's condition has evolved and it is still uncertain how Barthomelloi will react to it.
  • Gallows Humor: Played with in chapter 15 when Bazett tells Shirou his dad would be turning in his grave over something he just said, so what does Shirou do? Projects all three Origin blades to see if they would roll over.
  • Genre Savvy: Witch!Caster exhibits this in chapter 38 in regards to Shirou, finally getting the hint. Archer does much the same when Rin and Luvia finally clear up the misconceptions he had about the timeline. With just a basic overview of the situation, Archer is able to piece together Shirou's entire strategy and years of prep-work towards the war, and he deduces the nature of Shirou's Dead Apostle condition from a single question Rin asks him.
  • Harem Seeker: Taiga believes Shirou to be this.
    "The School Idol. The Foreign Beauty. The Overly Attached Underclassman. Shirou Emiya has wooed and claimed the heart of these trademarked stereotypes in the school he is at, and now with that Saber girl that's staying at his home as another Foreign Beauty, albeit less developed, it makes four, and I fear what he could do with you [Illya] who can easily represent the adorable little sister archetype," Taiga Fujimura stated seriously. "I so far have managed to remain immune from his wiles and not fill in the spot of the loving mature elder sister; however I am not so sure about that Bazett woman that sometimes comes over to visit." She paused before looking to the side in thought. "In fact, if those rumors about Ryudou-kun are true... oh dear lord if they are then he has a class president as well!"
  • Humiliation Conga:
    • Rich Bitch Marjatta Edelfelt suffers a devastating one when she fights Sakura, constantly underestimating her that multiple times would cost her victory, and even after Sakura admits defeat this continues when she unleashes the Crest Worms, her Servant getting injured by Shirou, and after heading to the Ryudou Temple becomes a living wand for her own Servant. That is kinda harsh, though it's hard to argue she didn't deserve at least some of it.
    • Zouken falls on the receiving end of a particularly cathartic one over the course of a few chapters.
  • I Am Not Left-Handed: Sakura has learned Reinforcement from Shirou, which when combined with her own mysteries allows her to push Marjatta back in close combat in chapter 25.
  • I Am Not My Father: Shirou insists it is not his intent to become like his father, despite how he has the potential to become the next Magus Killer.
  • In Spite of a Nail:
    • Rin still summons the same Archer using a piece of his cloth. Assassin is still summoned by Witch Medea and her master, and Illya still tries to kill Shirou. However, the last one happens earlier than in canon.
    • Chapter 26 has Witch Medea relocate to the Ryudou Temple as her base of operations.
  • Indirect Kiss: Rin doesn't realize she's eating using the same chopsticks she was feeding a still-recovering Shirou with until Sakura points it out to her.
  • Instant Runes: Sirius' greatest Mystic Code, the Lebor na nUidre, the Book of the Dun Cow, is actually his skin, and allows him to instantly create runes on any part of his body, enabling him to give himself a wide range of abilities. It also allows him to make said runes on the outside world significantly more quickly than most magi.
  • Internal Reveal:
    • Kiritsugu's letters to various people inform each about the corrupted Grail and everything he saw in his dreams.
    • Sakura, Rider, and Saber learn about Shirou's Dead Apostle blood when the King of Rats enlists their help to save his life.
    • After Luvia confronts Shirou about Illya being his sister, Shirou is forced to reveal to her most of his goals for the Fifth War.
    • Bazett, Lancer, both Casters, and Luvia discover that Archer is Heroic Spirit EMIYA. Immediately after this, Witch!Caster has Assassin reveal his shocking identity to everyone present.
    • In the aftermath of that fight, Luvia and Rin trade information. Luvia tells Rin some of what she forced out of Shirou, and with Princess!Caster's help the two of them realize Archer is a Counter Guardian.
    • Saber's identity is revealed to everyone who didn't already know when she prepares to use Excalibur while they escape from Ryūdou Temple.
    • Implied: The second summons by Kirei leads Shirou to the conclusion that Caster learned from Rider most of Shirou's plans for the Grail War and informed Kirei of at least the part about trying to stop the Grail War.
  • Jerkass Realization: Rin suffers two counts of this concerning Shirou. First is the identity of his Reality Marble, followed by the extent of how distorted he really is.
  • Laughing Mad:
    • Rin after realizing that Archer is Heroic Spirit EMIYA. Archer wonders for a moment if Rin is insane.
    • Sakura in Chapter 25 has a subtle moment of this when the worms come and try to subject Marjatta to what she went through.
    • Illya briefly goes into this when faced with the idea that Shirou snuck into the Einsbern castle and rigged it with bombs without anyone knowing.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Rich Bitch Marjatta constantly looks down on other people, viewing them as "peasants" and considering herself several times superior to them because of her bloodline, to the point where she doesn't care that families are dying due to her Caster draining their prana. It's also revealed she killed a potential Master in cold blood before the War even started to get a second set of Command Seals. Caster's betrayal comes off more as her getting her just desserts than anything else...
  • Like an Old Married Couple: In Chapter 14, Bazett hears Shirou and Rin's bickering and says they're acting like an elderly couple. The two in question simultaneously deny it, to Bazett's further amusement.
  • Literal Split Personality: The Edefelt sisters' summoning of Medea results in this. Luvia has the nicer Princess incarnation, Marjatta the more cruel witch incarnation. This is reflected in their Noble Phantasms and skills.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: Out of all the Servants in the Grail War, Archer is the one who is least informed about the current situation. Which is incredibly hilarious when you think about it.
    • Not true anymore as of chapter 38. He gets a major info dump about most of what has been going on and the discrepancies between his original timeline and the current one, and the cat is out of the bag that he is not their Shirou.
  • Magical Incantation: You know that Shirou's about to do a Moment of Awesome whenever he says at least the first line of his UBW aria: My body is made of blades. "Trace On" also counts. Several other characters are shown using incantations, as well.
    • Sakura has several chants of her own. Her brand of reinforcement starting with His body is made of blades, and several chants to control her brand of shadow magic (reining in the Shadow when Zouken attempts to Mind Control her, or spawning shadow shields to absorb Caster's attacks).
  • Magic Skirt: Rin has a literal one, as she enchanted her very short skirt to protect her modesty.
  • Mirthless Laughter: Shirou has a case of this and Tears of Joy after finally killing Zouken in chapter 32.
  • My Death Is Only The Beginning: Part of Kiritsugu's plan includes making Origin Swords from his bones for Shirou, which only occurs after his death.
  • Mundane Utility: Shirou can, thanks to his utterly broken Reinforcement, make any type of jewel he desires, provided he has the necessary materials beforehand.
  • Named Weapons: The two curved blades of Severing and Binding are named Natalia and Maiya, respectively, and the longsword that contains both Origins is named after Kiritsugu himself.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: The new 10th Dead Apostle Ancestor: The Ash of Miracles. Guess who.
  • Noble Demon: Merem Solomon is a Dead Apostle Ancestor who displays an unusually benevolent attitude toward humans and staunch loyalty to Shirou in particular, whom he considers a friend and kindred spirit.
  • Noodle Incident: The many experiments Rin has performed on Shirou that went awry.
  • Not Himself: Rin gradually realizes something is off about Archer: he hasn't used Maiya, Natalia, or any of Shirou's elemental blades; he doesn't know that Shinji died two years beforehand; and he's perfectly willing to kill Bazett, whom he's supposed to be close with.
  • Not What It Looks Like: When Shirou is returning a prana-filled jewel to Rin, Taiga thinks Shirou got himself a new girlfriend.
  • Oh Crap!:
    • While scouting the city, Assassin/Kiritsugu is spotted and recognized by Gilgamesh.
    • Shirou reacts this way when he figures out that Kirei has just learned of his plans to destroy the Grail, because it means that Gilgamesh is in all likelihood about to come after Illya and/or Sakura.
  • Original Character:
    • Sirius McGinty, crafter of Mystic Codes, including Kiritsugu's Thompson Contender.
    • Chapter 18 introduces Marjatta Edelfelt, the younger sister of Luviagetta Edelfelt, who due to the Ore Scales aka Sisters characteristic of the Edelfelt clan is co-heir.
  • Papa Wolf: To say Kiritsugu is pissed off when Witch!Caster uses him to mess with Shirou and Illya's heads would be a severe understatement. Any leeway she had with him is long gone after that stunt.
  • Poor Communication Kills: When the Tsundere nature of Rin clashes with the "just want to be helpful to anyone" nature of Shirou. Shirou doesn't even know what he did wrong when Rin cuts off all contact for some time.
  • Posthumous Character: Kiritsugu is dead after 3 years of raising Shirou, by the end of Chapter 5. Then he is brought back as Servant Assassin.
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: Rin as she points the Thompson Contender at an enraged Louvre.
    "...Get off my property."
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: In the same chapter as the aforementioned Pre-Asskicking One-Liner, from Shirou when he's comparing Louvre's collection of weapons to his.
    "It's not big enough."
  • Precision F-Strike: Shirou gives a couple in his second encounter with the vampire that's looking for him in Fuyuki.
  • Protectorate: Chapter 40 has Shirou explain that he has one, and just HOW far he will go to defend it, even against the Queen.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Chapters 35 and 36 see Caster survive Shirou's assault on her temple, force him to reveal several trumps, keep him from rescuing Marjatta, steal command of Rider from him, and use Assassin to physically and emotionally attack him and Illya after taking one of Berserker's lives. She came out of the whole thing worse off than anyone; having to recover from a mortal wound given to her by Shirou, her plans pushed back, her workshop damaged, all of Assassin's leeway towards her gone in place of blatant hostility, and having used up all but one of her command seals, which led to Shirou getting the last laugh after they called a cease fire when he pointed this out to everyone and said that he'd leave Bazette, Lancer, Rider, and Assassin at Ryudou Temple where she'd have to deal with them. Her position in the War is balancing on a knife's edge at this point, and she knows it.
    • And those are only the things that she knows about. On top of all that, her actions seem to have paved the way for a reconciliation between Shirou and Illya, meaning that she might soon be dealing with Saber and Berserker working together, she doesn't know that Luvia and Rin were spying on her and know just how precarious her situation is, and she's completely oblivious to the fact that she probably ticked off Merem when she killed the King of Rats. All in all, she lost more than anyone due to that battle, and stands to lose even more because of it.
    • Chapter 38 more or less confirms this, seeing as Illya agrees to team up with Saber for the time being, and Luvia and Rin grudgingly agree that their matchup is the one that is the least likely to blow up in everyone's face, compared to other options.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Kirei's cover for the collateral damage of the battle at Matou's manor was chosen for three reasons: it adequately explained the home being burned to the ground and a large strip of road and a part of the woods being burned; it was so over-the-top that people wouldn't be willing to think too hard about it; if Zouken survived, it would tick him off by declaring his home destroyed by a fool.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder: Chapter 38 has Princess!Caster ask Archer if being a Counter Guardian is really bad enough to warrant temporal paradox-induced suicide. Archer's response and elaboration on his existence as one make it hard for his audience to stay angry at him.
  • Rule of Cool: The only reason why Rin is able to blast the Mace of Odo out of Louvre's hands using a Thompson Contender firing .30-06 Springfield rounds on her first try. Also meshes with Improbable Aiming Skills.
  • Secret Identity:
    • When Shirou dons his holy shroud and masks his face, he turns into Emiya, the second Magus Killer and the Clocktower Queen's Silver Dog. This one is quickly out of the bag to almost any plot-relevant character, hilariously.
    • Another successful iteration would be Shirou's identity as the maybe-maybe-not 10th Apostle, the "Ash of Miracles". It's so secret that even Shirou, himself, is not aware of it. Only Merem is.
  • Secret Identity Change Trick:
    • Shirou dons the holy shroud as a ninja mask to hide his features, the cheesiness of which gets frequently lampshaded.
    • Archer tries to do the same thing in chapter 23 when Rin says he has to conceal his identity. Rin scornfully points out this won't work. They end up having him wear a helmet that covers just as much.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: In Chapter 14, Bazett keeps teasingly referring to Shirou and Rin as a couple, and at one point she says Rin "can plan ways to torture [her] "not" boyfriend later." Rin then shouts, "He's not my boyfriend!"
  • Shirtless Scene: Archer invokes this in an instance of Literal Genie after being basically asked to tell the truth, bare naked, with no restraint. When asked to explain how he could identify Lancer, he proceeds to show everyone in the room the scar he got during his life by taking off his armor, prompting appropriate amounts of Luminescent Blush and fidgeting.
  • Shout-Out: A group of Sealing Designates in the Dungeons of Clock Tower once tried to create "Pouch Creatures or something like that" (i.e., Pocket Monsters) after seeing the games.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: Kiritsugu dies even sooner than in canon due to giving Shirou his Magic Circuits, but his actions here set the new plot entirely into swing. The impact really grows when he becomes Assassin.
  • Spanner in the Works:
    • Louvre, whose desire for Mystic Codes and conceptual weapons has him kidnapping Sirius. This leads to the chain of events that exposes the existence of Shirou and his abilities to not only the Mage's Association, but Kotomine, Zouken, and Gilgamesh as well.
    • The anti-Grail team merely planned to have the Edelfelts summon Medea to gain access to Rule Breaker, with Shirou quickly eliminating the summoned Servant with Luvia none the wiser. Marjatta and the use of Ore Scales pretty much threw a wrench in the plans to minimize the Edelfelts' role in the war. One of the results from this is the destruction of the Matou residence.
    • Assassin/Kiritsugu Emiya. There is a reason the author calls him "the Servant that fucks everyone's plans up." He even humiliates Zouken.
      • He notes with some irony that Assassin's doing the same thing to his own plans.
  • Staring Down Cthulhu: Waver doesn't back down from Gilgamesh despite knowing that one wrong word or move will get him killed instantly.
  • Storm of Blades: Like his canon counterpart, Shirou is completely capable of this. Taken Up to Eleven during his fight with Louvre, when he traces practically his whole arsenal simultaneously.
  • Story-Breaker Power: Assassin, or, as the author calls him, "the Servant that fucks everyone's plans up". He has pitiful physical abilities, and his luck is E-rank (as bad as Lancer), but his own personal skills, an extremely versatile Noble Phantasm, and several stackable abilities that each increase the Rank of his attacks allow him to defeat Lancer in five seconds without even showing himself and utterly defeat Rider and Archer at the same time. This is Kiritsugu Emiya.
    • The full scope of which gets pointed out in Chapter 36. Tripping on two Broken landmines + Opportunity attack boost? Two A-ranked attacks, and one less life for Berserker. Illya's face upon seeing her father dispatch her Servant is priceless.
  • Soul-Cutting Blade: Kiritsugu's (the blade) intended function was to cripple a magus' Magic Circuits, but when that effect is reinforced by the curse of Angra Mainyu it goes far further, all the way down to the very soul.
  • That Came Out Wrong: Shirou delivering a ridiculous amount in Chapter 15. Bazett and Rin can't help but notice, though.
    • Even his Pre-Mortem One-Liner is not immune.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: Shirou using his entire arsenal of weapons at once to make a Human Pincushion of Louvre.
  • Tears of Joy: Shirou in Chapter 32 after Zouken's death.
  • Too Much Information: Sirius mentions when he was circumcised, much to Bazett and Shirou's consternation.
  • Tranquil Fury: Shirou is explicitly stated in Chapter 31 to have this trait when he gets genuinely angry.
  • Trauma Conga Line:
    • Rin experiences one as she gets a major info dump about everything Shirou has been doing behind everyone's backs in the war, and Archer's status as a Counter Guardian.
    • Archer sort of invokes this as he explains his goals to Rin, Luvia and Princess Caster, repeating word for word his rant to Shirou in the canon UBW route.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Assassin. He's a Glass Cannon. He barely has any direct combat experience, his stats are really weak, and he uses modern weaponry. But, he's so goddamned skilled and such a tactical genius that if you dare try to take him in his territory, all his powers will activate and his pea-shooters and cherry bombs become more powerful than most Noble Phantasms. Hell, if he gets a sneak attack on you, he can hit with enough strength to kill Berserker. Archer and Rider double-team him on his territory and he doesn't even get a scratch, and he defeats Lancer in five seconds flat. Of course, this is Kiritsugu Emiya. Who else could he be?
  • Worthy Opponent:
    • Gilgamesh still respects Iskander enough to spare Waver, in spite of his blatant attempts to have him killed.
    • The Edellfelts apparently had this attitude to Kiritsugu when it came to doing mercenary work, as their contracts would often conflict.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: According to the author, Shirou actually relies heavily on everyone in the Association being guilty of this, which has his straightforwardness coming off as mysterious and putting everyone on edge.
    • In chapter 38, this is how one could read the Queen's reaction to hearing Shirou's true motivations from Waver. "It can't be that straightforward. It never is." Waver tells her that it is, scarily so.
    • Caster finally averts this when she pieces out Shirou's motivations from his actions up to that point, which she could observe, and secondhand accounts from Rider's memories, and that yes, he is that straightforward.
    • Archer spends quite a while assuming that the years prior to the War were much like his childhood and that Shirou is an Idiot Hero like he was in his youth, leading him to make logical but incorrect assumptions. He goes straight back to being scarily accurate about the situation after he gets enough of his facts straightened out after Rin and Luvia interrogate him in chapter 37.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Luviagetta Edelfelt gives one to Shirou once she finds out about his advantages in the Grail War (years of preparation, the Origin swords, etc.) that threatens to completely destroy their friendship. He has very good reasons for hiding it, though.
  • What Could Have Been: Lancer actually wonders what the world would have been like had Heroes like him, Hercules, Arthur, and the like all done better by their children when they were still alive.
  • Written by the Winners: Deliberately invoked by Shirou in chapter 40 in order to counteract Kirei's manipulations of outing him and setting a hunt on him. He takes the initiative and provides premium intel (what Kirei didn't report about, and what he doesn't know himself ; which ends up being the whole truth minus a very few select details) to the Queen so that she may use the truth as she sees fit and keep an edge over anyone else who might want to use the whole fiasco for their own ends.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: Kotomine. Zouken. Betrayer!Caster. Shirou, Waver, and Sirius. All of them are butting heads to claim the Grail or destroy it. On top of that, along comes Spanner in the Works Assassin.
  • You Are Not Alone: Part of Rin's comforting speech when Shirou tries to make sense of receiving Mystic Code swords from Kiritsugu while being told to tone down his heroic-obsessed distortion.
  • You Kill It, You Bought It: After killing Louvre, Shirou is offered his position as the tenth Dead Apostle Ancestor. He declines, but the one making the offer expects him to eventually accept and thus renews the offer every few months and is holding the position in reserve for him.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: Shirou is uncomfortable with accepting compliments from Zouken on principle.