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Because of the War is a Worm and XCOM 2 crossover written by Shadows of Vanity, author of Seraphim (Worm Fanfic) and Herald (Worm).

Official Summary: August 31st, 2010, 19:00 hours, Brockton Bay, Approximately Fifteen Minutes at a walk from Brockton Bay Cinemas. The precise time and place that Taylor Hebert was fatally wounded whilst caught in the crossfire between the ABB and the E88. The precise time and place that made Taylor The Commander of XCOM. The Avatar of Justice and Protection, destined to bring peace and safety to the people of Earth Bet through superior firepower. To her noble warriors, she is simply The Commander. To the rest of the world, she is that which was born because of the war. She is...Vegnagun.

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Can be found on SpaceBattles, Archive of Our Own and Fanfiction.net.


This work contains examples of:

  • Adaptation Deviation: The story is rather AU at the beginning, and only becomes more so thanks to the trickle down/waterfall effect.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: Several characters, due mostly to events happening in the past, though of course as the AU extends this will come into effect more and more as events take place (or don't) that created/will create the characters as they were/will be. Of note is Danny Hebert and the DWA, who decided to prove the old adage of not fucking with a sailor by becoming one of the major factions in the city, albeit in a purely defensive manner. Other characters remark that they have similarities with The Mafia or a militia for their cohesion, behaviors, and loyalties.
    • Emma does not gain her worst canon traits, as Taylor facing off with her to find the truth just two months after being attacked ensures they rebuild their friendship.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Danny Hebert and the DWA take a more direct approach to helping the city by turning the Docks into their own territory and driving off the gangs from there.
    • Emma becomes a Thinker with the power to find anything by dowsing.
  • Adaptational Sexuality: A few female characters who in canon never showed any interest in women do in this fic. They include Taylor, Lisa (Tattletale), Paige (Canary), and Sophia (Shadow Stalker).
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  • Ascended Extra: Several characters, most prominently (thus far) Paige Mcabee AKA Canary, and her boyfriend (known in the story as Eugene Baker).
  • Badass Army: XCOM, of course.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Taylor triggers at a 50 on 50 street-gang battle. XCOM deploys a squad of 6. The aftermath is 100 dead gangers and no injured XCOM.
  • Elite Army: XCOM, again. In all their deployments, they have overwhelmingly defeated, if not outright destroyed, their opponents, with squad-sized groups taking on as many as 15-to-1 odds.
  • Meaningful Name: Taylor is referred to as “Vegnagun,” which translates roughly to “because of [the] war.” in the author comments. This is not only a Title Drop, but is likely also a reference to the events that resulted in her Triggering: a skirmish in the war between the gangs vying for control of the city.
  • Named by the Adaptation:
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    • Canary's boyfriend is called Eugene Baker.
    • Miss Militia's full name is Hannah Washington.
    • Clockblocker's full name is Dennis Charleston.
    • Aegis' full name is Carlos Dorent.
    • Kid Win's full name is Chris Easton.
  • Polyamory: Taylor will eventually wind up with Amy, Lisa, and Paige.
  • Praetorian Guard: In a manner of speaking, given that Taylor quite literally has an entire army (and their base) sitting inside of her head waiting to be made manifest. In a very real sense this is how XCOM is introduced to the story, as they manifest for the first time to save Taylor's life and Paige's freedom.
  • Promoted to Love Interest: Given the nature of the pairings in this story, this has an overwhelming presence Examples include:
    • Miss Militia for Danny Hebert, though they haven't quite gotten there yet.
    • Paige (Canary) for Taylor, though they’re dancing around the subject with impressive dorkiness as only teenagers can.
  • Psychic Powers: As can be expected from an XCOM story. This is in fact the basis of Taylor's powers, powers arranged for by Asaru, an Ethereal, and by chapter 9, she is learning to manifest the Templars psionic blades.
  • Redshirt Army: The gangs of Brockton Bay, who get practically slaughtered by XCOM in their hundreds.
  • Shout-Out: Many and more to choose from, including Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs General Tom Waverly (White Christmas), the title/cape name of Vegnagun (Final Fantasy X-2), Ultimate Dowsing (historical, though primarily inspired by Lyserg in Shaman King) or Ziva David (NCIS, which also acts as an In-Universe Shout-Out, since Taylor based her on the character).

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