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Everyone who watched Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V knows what the true story was about: a man wants to unite the dimensions in order to be reunited with someone he loves.

And everyone who watched Episode 37 knows how it ends: Yuto sacrifices himself to protect Yuya from a direct attack and gets absorbed into his soul then Yuzu teleports Yugo away. Simple as that.

This...is not that story.

Yuya somehow wakes up in a dark realm with a strange spiral mark on his arm and it turns he's somehow found his way into the arms of Zarc along with Yuto and Yugo.

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And as this happens, Academia is somehow assaulted by a girl in a puppeteer outfit and a top hat and three puppets that decided to decapitate three Obelisk Force soldiers.

And in the Standard Dimension is Yuzu Hiiragi, who only wants to her best friend back, only to find that her best bet to get Yuya back is to team up with a set of duelists from another world who don't really care for her troubles as they are on stopping Academia's plans (and to make sure their You Show Duel School Festival goes off without a hitch).

And if Yuzu plays her cards right, things will be perfectly fine...right?

This fanfic is penned by Green Phantom Queen of Between my Brother and Me: Ab Initio fame in which the characters of that world are rewritten into different versions of themselves (the author herself stated to think the story as an Elseworld version of Ab Initio) which mostly focuses on characters from ARC-V and VRAINS. It is also darker and bloodier than most of the stories in her Ab Initio stories (barring perhaps Lux ex Tenebris). The characters aren't as they seem, and in this bloody theatrical tale of horror, drama and snark, nothing is at is seems and the people closest to you might have some secrets they don't want loose.

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A collection of stories that take place three years prior to Mors Omnibus is being written: Mors Tua, Vita Mia depict the lives of everyone in Carroll City as they build You Show Duel School, encounter strange beings and struggle with their feelings in this crazy and chaotic world while Mea Culpa explains the story of Dawn's repurposement.


Provides Examples Of:

  • Accusation Fic:
    • Yusho Sakaki got away with his disappearing trick to the Xyz Dimension, never thinking to say goodbye to his family or make sure they were financially secure for the three years he was away. This story has multiple characters point out that this was All for Nothing as the Xyz Dimension is still destroyed, he's far from home with no signs of stopping Professor Akaba and his son is now a brainwashed puppet by Zarc. The only thing he's done — barring gathering any turncoat Academia students to his side — is make the people who worshipped him and his teachings hate his goddamn guts. Word of God states that she just dislikes Yusho's actions in general in that beneath his charming smile is someone who has done very very stupid things.
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    • Reiji is also chewed out by Yusei in that he takes so much care with his plans, no matter the cost that he doesn't focus on a very dangerous situation that Reira is.
      • In the same vein as Reiji, Himika gets chewed out for her treatment of Reira by the Dark Signer in that she sees Reira more like a trophy than a human being.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: In 15th Show, Ayu tears Himika apart for having a heart-motif yet she shows no love for anyone except herself, rather she loves looking beautiful to hide her black heart. This is so powerful that Kiryu, Misty, Carly and Yusei actually laugh with glee at seeing their little sweetfish chewing out the Chairwoman.
  • Action Girl: Nearly single female character in the story so far is capable of kicking ass in a duel and many of them can kick ass in a brawl.
  • Action Mom: Saki, Shirobara, Lusamine and Lampetia have all won duels against Obelisk Force members. Saki gets extra points for engaging in fisticuffs and being a former gang leader.
  • Adaptational Badass: Many of the characters who dueled in their series get an overhaul here.
    • Mokuba: Barring stealing someone's deck in Duelist Kingdom, he never duels in the anime or manga. Here, he's using a -tellarknight and hands Yuzu a solid defeat.
    • Serenity: Only had one duel in the anime and even then it was 3 vs 1 while having only two bits of advice how to play (Tribute Summon and Fusion Summon). Here, she is dueling Yuto with an Orcust deck and plays all three of its Link monsters and its Xyz monster while Yuto has to struggle with giving her direct damage because Dingirsu was capable of kicking his ass if he didn't have anything else.
    • Carly: While she already Took a Level in Badass while she was a Dark Signer, she shows off more badassery here thanks to the updated Fortune Lady cards.
    • Ayu: After becoming a Dark Signer, she gains a new Synchro based archetype and used her knowledge of Tribute Summoning to summon her Earthbound Immortal against the Obelisk Force soldier who killed her. Quite a change from the girl who forgot that she couldn't attack on the firs turn.
    • Yusho was already known to be the best duelist in Maiami City (despite only knowing Tribute Summoning) but he ramps it up with two new things going for him: Pendulum monsters in the form of his new Performapal Changeraffe and implications that he has even more Pendulum monsters on hand and Xyz Summoning in Performapal Knightwolfe and Performapal Ladyhawke.
  • Adult Fear:
    • Yvonne's backstory has her watch her brother be stuck in a coma and having the doctors pull the plug of him before she's kidnapped by the very same guy who caused her brother's coma about to kill her. Then she sees her puppets come to life and kill people.
    • 6th Show: Ayu goes chasing off a girl who looks similar to Yuzu...and she ends up with her throat slit and revived by an Earthbound Immortal.
    • Yusho gets a humongous dose of this in the 11th Show. Finally reuniting with his son for the first time in three years, only to learn that Zarc has full control of Yuya like a puppet and no matter what he does, Yuya is completely gone and no longer sees Yusho as his true father.
  • Alice Allusion: While the Ab Inito stories had a lot of references to Wonderland (and a story that involves going to Wonderland), this one takes the cake.
    • The main city of that world is known as "Carroll City", named after Lewis Carroll. One location is known as Bandersnatch Park which has two theaters called the Toadstool Outdoor Theater and Wonderland Marionette Theater.
    • 2nd Show has characters sing "The Jabberwocky" and the "Queen of Hearts" poems.
    • The Action Card Sora uses in his duel against Guignol is called "Gone Mad" depicting a girl in a blue dress clutching her head in agony while people laugh at her.
    • Mieru dresses up like Alice while Yvonne's puppets are dressed as the Knave of Hearts (Yuya), the White Rabbit (Yuto), the Mad Hatter (Yugo) and the Cheshire Cat (Yuri). Kelly and Miette are dressed up as the White and Red Queen, respectively with Kelly having the ability to see the future like the White Queen of the story could.
    • 10th Show has Yuto and Yugo call Yuri their "white rabbit".
    • Yuya after he stabs Ash in the stomach shouts "Oh frabjous day, callooh callay!"
    • Saki's bar is called "Wool And Water", the title of one of the chapters in Through the Looking Glass.
  • Anyone Can Die: Yuya, Yuto, Yugo, a lot of Obelisk Force soldiers, Ayu Ayukawa, Mieru Hochun, Yusho Sakaki... Yeah this story won't spare anyone.
  • Arc Words:
    • "(Re)Purpose" or anything relating to that word. This is a term used by those in Carroll City when people are resurrected and must figure out what they want to do now that they are undead.
    • "A new purpose awaits you!" usually used as Foreshadowing that someone is gonna die. This ends up becoming a Wham Line for 14.5th Show
    • "Through darkness and mirrors" is another phrase which is probably the Carroll City version of "Through the looking glass".
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The author's notes for 11th Show shows off a list of bloody and gorey stuff that will be contained for the rest of Part 1, with the last item being "and classic Yvonne snark".
  • Ascended Extra: Comments on the AO3 reveals that Mieru Hochun, Masumi Kotsu and Yuu Sakuragi are going to have bigger roles in the story.
  • Asshole Victim:
    • Viren, the mob boss who caused Yvonne's older brother, Xavier, to be forced into a coma and then decides to make the girl watch as his goons burn her beloved puppets before killing her. The minute the puppets come to life to kill everyone, you probably won't be shedding tears for them.
    • Academia is considered this to the residents of Carroll City. Considering that many of them hunt people down as a game and do not give two fucks about the destruction they caused, it's not hard to pity them being carded/murdered by Yvonne and the other members of Carroll City You Show Duel School.
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • In 1st Show we're lead to believe that Guignol uses a Gimmick Puppet deck due to how she dresses as a puppeteer and fights with living puppets. It's later revealed that she uses Shaddoll monsters, which she lampshades.
    Guignol: You know, they say the most important rule of magic is deception.
    • The end of 3rd Show has Seto and Sen unmask the Plague Doctor who hung himself on a tree to find out that it's an alternate version of themselves...who quickly reveals that he's not dead (kinda) in the beginning of the next chapter.
    • In 5th Show, Brendan approaches Ruri for she has done something bad. Said something...taking his Blue Angel plushie without permission.
    • In 14.5th Show, Yusho tells Yvonne to stop playing around and to "Get it over with. Now." all while looking at her right hand and showing off her Court of Strings mark. You would first assume he meant "Transform me into a puppet like you did Sora". As revealed at the end of the chapter, he meant "Kill me."
  • Black-and-Gray Morality: On one side, we have Academia and their goals of carding people, another side is Zarc and his plans on revenge against the Akabas and reuniting with his sons and then there's Carroll City who are shown to be fine murdering Academia personnel but seem to have issues with Zarc's machinations.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: The end of the prologue has three members of Obelisk Force killed off and the first chapter involves Grande Lorde Guignol slicing someone's neck before she and her puppets massacre an entire classroom of Osiris Red students.
  • Book-Ends: 3rd Show begins and ends with someone singing the opening/ending verse to "Come Little Children".
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Mind control is prevalent throughout the story. Zarc uses this to erase Yuya, Yugo and Yuto's memories, Ryoken is using hypno-therapy on Yusaku and Guignol uses this both on Sora and Yuri.
  • Breather Episode: Chapters 4 and 5 are about everyone preparing for the School Festival and, barring a scene with Professor Akaba, lighthearted compared to the murder and bloodshed of previous chapters.
  • Brick Joke: When Yvonne and Sora first clash, Yvonne (as Guignol) makes the comment that Academia is like Adolf Hitler and the concentration camps which ticks Sora off. Chapters later, Sora now brainwashed to essentially being Yvonne's puppet explains Academia's goals of a perfect utopia before realizing, "Guignol was right; that does sound like Hitler and the concentration camps."
  • Call-Forward: The end of 3rd Show has Sen and Seto trying to find the door that would let them meet "three gay Caballeros" meaning that this is before their appearance in Legend of the Three Caballeros: Dark Signs of the Sun (which the author confirms). This reference is omitted in the AO3 version however.
  • Cerebus Retcon:
    • At the end of 10th Show, Yvonne tells Yuzu to tell Yusho, "we're ready to fight". However, she (and the readers) completely forgot about this request. Why is it so important, anyway? Answer, it's Yusho's Trigger Phase which makes him remember information only when someone tells it to him.
      • All of Yvonne's interactions with Yusho (including but not limited to snark, trolling and telling Yusho he's too soft and how he stupidly went to talk to Professor Akaba without saying goodbye to his family) are seen in a Black Comedy light. It isn't until 15th Show that we see Yvonne not wanting to kill Yusho and her true feelings about him.
  • Circus of Fear: The Action Field for Yvonne/Yusho and Yuya/Zarc's duel in 14th Show and 14.5th Show takes place at the Carnival of Souls, a dark carnival where the four sing songs that befit said circus. Yuya also debuts his new "Nightmare Mirror" archetype which are twisted circus version of people (and animals) in his life. They also make numerous references to the famous story Something Wicked This Way Comes for good measure.
  • City of Weirdos: Carroll City is Den City with a different name and populated with zombies, vampires, living puppets, and other strange delights heavily inspired out of Alice in Wonderland.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Citizens from Carroll City are...off, to say the least. The most notable one is Carroll City's version of Seto Kaiba who is shown napping by hanging himself on a tree, and thinks it's fun to joke around on eating his brother's corpse to the point that he makes Sen (for those who read Legends of the Three Caballeros: Dark Signs of the Sun would know how crazy he is) completely sane
  • Cool Mask: A requisite of those from Carroll City is that they wear masks to cover their identities.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Carroll City: 1, Academia: 0
    • In Yvonne/Guignol's duel against Sora, she doesn't lose any of her lifepoints as she whittles all of Sora's with her Shaddoll monsters.
    • In May/Willow's duel against Celina, Celina doesn't even have a chance to attack once Willow summons Vampire Vamp to take control of Lunalight Cat Dancer.
  • Curb Stomp Cushion:
    • Despite losing to Moon Knight, Yuzu does manage to destroy one of his Xyz Monsters in battle, which is something he praises.
    • Rin and Ruri nearly defeat Miette and Kelly in their tag-team duel; had it not been for Kelly's Shrink card, they would have won after Ruri attacked with Assault Nightingale.
    • Brendan and Serenity lose their duels to Yugo and Yuto respectively but they do manage to push them into a corner where they had to think outside the box to win (and even then, victory wasn't the goal for the former two).
    • Yvonne and Yusho lose to Zarc and Yuya in their tag-team duel, but the two of them were able to destroy most, if not all of the monsters that Zarc and Yuya unleashed on them and bring the two down to 300 lifepoints.
  • Darker and Edgier: Boy howdy. The Pokémon characters in this story are not squeaky clean at all, and show now qualms in killing people, Yuya, Yuto and Yugo are dead in the beginning of the tale and Zarc is using mind control to get all of his "sons" together. And this is just the first few chapters.
  • David vs. Goliath: The final turn of Yuya and Zarc vs Yvonne and Yusho is Zarc's Supreme Dragon Vassal of the Soulless Heavens (which is roughly Zarc's size) vs Yvonne's El Shaddoll Construct (which is a giant). Stat wise, it looks like El Shaddoll Construct will win (Zarc's monster has only 2500 ATK vs El Shaddoll Construct's 2800 with the difference just enough for Zarc and Yuya to lose) but Zarc's Pendulum monsters strengthen the David of this battle to utterly annihilate the Goliath.
  • Deconstruction: Arc-V was already a deconstruction of traditional Yu-Gi-Oh tropes, so this is a given.
    • The implications of people appearing from a different dimension to cause wanton destruction is frightening, but (most of) Academia believe that it's for a good cause. To them, they are the freedom fighters for a new utopia. So here's a question: what happens if these people are fighting off against the same type of people they truly are...except they don't have an end goal of an utopia? End result: Carroll City and their massacre of these students and acting just like they are — cold, apathetic and relishing in killing them as if this was all a game.
    • In the anime, there's no repercussions or people calling Yusho out for his very reckless move on going on his crusade to stop Professor Akaba, Yuya included. Here, many characters — Yusho included — state that what he did was very very stupidnote , stating that his approach has done nothing over the past three years and that it's only made Yuya more susceptible to Zarc's influence in the end.
  • Did Not Think This Through:
    • In 7th Show Yuzu suggests Mieru follow Serenity to find where Yusho is. Three chapters later, she regrets doing this because she now needs Mieru's tracking skills to locate Ruri and Rin.
    • Yusho's impulsive decision to go to the Fusion Dimension without notifying his son and wife backfires on him badly; because he never told anyone where he was going, it only ended up hurting Yuya more and more thus giving Zarc fuel to brainwash him with. Moreover, going alone means that he has no one to support him and no way to keep in contact with Reiji and he never considered having a backup plan to make sure his family is financially supported until he comes back. Plus even if he made it to the Professor, what's to say that the Professor didn't just card him? Yusho is skilled in lots of things but he has no foresight.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?:
    • When Yugo decides to stab one of his feathers into Yuri's heart, the feather being filled with the 'feelings' Yugo has for Zarc, it looks eerily like he's trying to get Yuri into some sort of drug addiction. What doesn't help is Yuri's reactions after the feather is 'injected' into his body.
    • The dynamic between Zarc and Yusho in regards to Yuya can sound like the two are a divorced couple with Yusho being a deadbeat dad who comes back to repair his relationship with Yuya and Yuya no longer considers Yusho his true father. There's also a lot of...tension between the two, as Dawn happily points out.
  • Down the Rabbit Hole: Mieru and Yuzu are dragged to Carroll City by Moon Knight (Mokuba) dragging them into a portal in 3rd Show.
  • Elseworld: The author specifically uses this word to describe the story and its universe in comparison to her Ab Initio verse.
  • Flashback:
    • Each chapter starts with a flashback involving either a character that is the focus of said chapter or Zarc with Yuya, Yuto and Yugo.
      • Chapter 11 has a flashback that fully expands on how Yvonne hypnotized Sora.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Before their duel starts, Yvonne tells Sora "Stars, hide your fires; let not light see my dark and deep desires." She states this nine chapters...but replace "Stars" with "Sora" and we learn that it's become his Trigger Phrase.
      • Earlier, Yvonne imitates killing herself using a retractable knife. She uses this same trick on Yuya during the tag team duel in 14.5th Show
    • When Rin wakes up in the fourth chapter, the radio is playing "Kill All My Friends". The flashback for the seventh chapter has Zarc stating that Yuzu killed Yuya (With Yuto in Yuya's soul at that point) and Yugo to prevent them from reuniting.
    • In the sixth chapter, Misty uses her ability to read faces to reveal that a new purpose awaits Ayu. Scenes later, Ayu becomes a Dark Signer.
    • Mieru's narration for the seventh chapter has her state that she did a Tarot reading with her future card being the Three of Swords (representing heartbreak and confusion) with Ash stating to look at it physically rather than symbolically. Four chapters later, Mieru finds herself heartbroken from seeing Yuya brainwashed by Zarc and then, like Ash said, she is killed with three knives piercing her heart while trying to protect Yusho.
    • There's a lot of hints about the end of 14.5th Show having Yusho dying by Yvonne's hands and becoming the Dark Signer of the Condor. This includes:
      • During the tag team duel in the first part of the chapter, 14th Show, Yuya states that "one of you shall soon perish" to Yvonne and Yusho. Yvonne states "Well, that's reassuring" then takes a glance at Yusho after Yuya states it, hinting that not only is Yusho going to die but that she is going to kill him.
      • In the funhouse, Yusho tells Yvonne to Get It Over With and Yvonne showing hesitance towards what he's mentioning. He means to kill him now.
      • The hints that Yvonne wants to make the duel last a little bit longer and for Yusho to focus on the present; she doesn't want to kill Yusho but has no choice but to and is trying not to think about it.
      • Mieru sees a vision of a black bird in her apple. Wiraqocha Rasca is a humongous black condor.
      • When Dragon Vassal of Twisted Resurrection offers himself to activate Supreme Dragon Vassal of the Soulless Heavens's special ability — he slices his throat all while tears in his eyes and a smile on his face — Yvonne can only comment that it's "wrong". Most likely, it's reminding her of how she has to offer Yusho up as she's seen crying when she does it.
      • There is a three card spread at the funhouse (See Tarot Troubles below) and Yusho asks if it's a good thing to which Yvonne states that it is. Those who know their tarot would read it as "Yusho has gone through hardships, is about to be given a blessing, and will soon spearhead his plot into action"...said action most likely him being turned into a Dark Signer.
      • When Yvonne enters The Euphemism to talk to Lady Belladonna, the latter is singing "Show Must Go On" which Yvonne states was her brother's favorite song. The song was released close to the end of Freddie Mercury's life, stating how he'd perform despite being seriously ill. This alludes to both Yvonne and Yusho — despite knowing their little plan, they're still going to be performing. The show (Action Duel) continues despite Yvonne feeling so broken as what's to come.
    • At the end of 10th Show, Yvonne asks Yuzu to tell Yusho "we're ready to fight". Most readers would forget this little detail. Chapters later, we find out why this is so important...it's Yusho's Trigger Phase.
      • In addition, when Yvonne suggests she adds herself to the duel with Yusho against Zarc and Yuya, Serenity and Ash state to Yuzu that Yvonne didn't hypnotize Yusho to let her join the duel. But she did hypnotize him with important information...
  • For Want of a Nail:
    • As the summary states, Zarc intervenes right at the time Yuto was absorbed into Yuya (ep 37), taking them and Yugo into an unknown location (the Sunken Realm) and brainwashing them to be his sons.
    • Carroll City gets involved with the chaos because Yusho Sakaki somehow landed in their world 3 years ago; when he showed off Action Duels to Yvonne, May and Dawn, it spurred them to help create their own You Show Duel School and build the resistance force to stop Academia.
      • Due to Yvonne and May going in for their massacre, Celina decides to leave for the Standard Dimension earlier than expected. This leads to her bumping into Ayu, Ayu chasing after Celina and then promptly killed by an Obelisk Force soldier before being resurrected as a Dark Signer.
    • Ray deciding to go the extra mile to ensure Zarc didn't return, by possessing Yuzu to kill Yuya, is what kickstarts Zarc coming in to brainwash Yuya, Yuto and Yugo.
  • Freak Out: Sen unleashes one after seeing Illusion Defender being destroyed by one of Dawn's monsters as it reminds him of his Mokuba — whom Illusion Defender actually is but he has no memories of that — hurling Sen out of their world just as it got destroyed.
  • Gut Punch: The end of 14.5th Show: So Yusho and Yvonne are walking off despite losing their epic duel against Yuya and Zarc. Yvonne starts asking if Yusho got the message from Yuzu...but when he asks "What message?" that's when the mood has dropped as Yvonne acts uncharacteristically of her. She apologizes to Yusho and ends it with the biggest Wham Line of the chapter before slicing his throat in front of a live audience and screaming at what she's done while the last scene of the chapter has Yusho meeting with Wiraqocha Rasca. The author wasn't kidding in 14th Show when she said that Yusho's challenge against Yuya would be the beginning of the end of everything.
  • How We Got Here: The end of the eighth chapter has Ayu sobbing in the ruins of the warehouse district of Maiami City with the following chapter describing what happened prior.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Each chapter is called 'Xth Show'' and are titled after Duel Monster cards.
  • I'm Taking Her Home with Me!: Mieru screams the Trope Namer when she sees the Puppet Yus in the seventh chapter.
  • I Regret Nothing: The author's notes state that she does not regret thinking that Zarc's dub voice should've been Wayne Grayson (who voices Leo Akaba) and that she sees Dartz in the former.
  • Mundane Solution: When May (Willow) duels Celina; Celina has Fusion summoned Lunalight Cat Dancernote  and has played Lunar Eclipse so that her monster can't be affected by Spell or Trap Effects. How does May win? By summoning Vampire Vamp to take control of Cat Dancer because Celina didn't give her monster protection from monster effects.
  • Musical Episode:
    • 3rd Show has each scene open up with lyrics from either "Come Little Children" or "The Hanging Tree". Word of God states that this comes from a mash-up with the two songs.
    • 11th Show has Yvonne, her mother, Ruri and Sora singing "Happyland" by Amanda Jessen while fighting off Obelisk Force.
    • 14th Show and 14.5th Show has Yuya, Zarc, Yvonne and Yusho alternating lines from "Greatest Show Unearthed" and "American Gothic" while Yuya and Yusho sing "The Circus Comes to Town" (the opening to Big Top Scooby-Doo!
  • Once More, with Clarity!: The first chapter has Guignol (Yvonne) ask Sora if he wants to be her friend and follows it with a scream. The flashback for the fourth chapter reveals that she transformed Sora into a wooden puppet.
    • Seven chapters later we get an additional scene to explain just how Yvonne got Sora to be so loyal to her.
  • Pass the Popcorn: Carroll City characters just love to munch on something as shit goes down.
    • In the first chapter, while seeing Sora about to go through the effects of the "Gone Mad" Action Card, Guignol props herself onto a bench and starts eating seaweed rice crackers. Her puppets watch the duel while eating chocolate covered pretzel sticks.
    • In the second chapter, Dawn is described as munching on popcorn when she communicates with Willow (May) as she is watching her older brother and his boyfriend "play paddycake".
    • The duel in the eighth chapter takes place in a café so the audience is eating while Rin and Ruri duel Miette and Kelly.
    • In the tenth chapter, Saki is having frozen yogurt when her daughter starts trolling Yuzu.
    • Justified in the eleventh chapter; the audience is munching on popcorn while Max duels Edo. And earlier on, Ash pulls out a sandwich from his hat while watching Yuya and Yuto waltz.
    • Various characters are eating sandwiches during the epic tag-team duel in 14th Show and 14.5th Show. Even Yvonne and Yusho get on it despite the two of them currently in an Action Duel!
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!:
    • Ruri screams at Yvonne to "Stop. Calling. Me. LULU!" in the tenth chapter.
    • Twice in the eleventh chapter: Zarc emphasis how he dressed Yuya as a puppeteer ringmaster by stating to Yusho that Yuya wanted to be "just. like. you." Scenes later, Yuya tells Yusho that he's "just. too. SOFT!"
  • Punctuated Pounding: After being trolled by Moon Knight, Yuzu tackles him and screams "WHERE. IS. YUYA?!" while pounding him with each word.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Yusho Sakaki learns the hard way that Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You is not a good excuse to go dimension hopping for three years. Zarc was easily able to influence Yuya because of the psychological issues Yuya had to go through for the past three years and Yusho learns that his plight to even stop Akaba was All for Nothing and no one in Carroll City is willing to forgive him for his impulsive decision.
    • As Yusho tells Mieru, trying to convince many Academia students to change their ways is not going to be a walk in the park. These kids have known nothing but what Leo Akaba taught them for years so if they hear something that doesn't line up with what they've been indoctrinated with of course they're not going to turn away so easily. Notably, Edo is shown struggling with Yusho's philosophy in his duel with Max and ends up lashing out at him in anger over the idea of dueling being for fun.
    • Reira, who is known to be quite a skilled duelist despite her age, is dueling Kiryu in 15th Show. But Reira is still a child — one who's still affected by PTSD and fighting for her goddamn life, not to mentioned bullied by her abusive mother — compared to Kiryu being much more experienced in dueling and not having that much pressure put on him. Kiryu compares the situation as a Child Prodigy going up against an experienced master: Reira may have skills but she doesn't have experience and the wisdom that comes from it.
  • Reference Overdosed: The first chapter comes complete with an entire section of references used throughout the chapter and continues to use it for subsequent chapters.
  • Related in the Adaptation: Dawn is the younger sister of Yusaku in this world.
  • Repulsive Ringmaster: Both Zarc and Yuya dress up as this for the school festival. Yuya also has a Duel Monster version of this called Nightmare Mirror Ringmaster which is essentially an evil version of Yusho.
  • Revenge Fic: Comments on AO3 reveals that the author has little esteem for the Akabas or Yusho Sakaki, the former for having very apathetic personalities or being utterly useless and the latter for just up and abandoning his family without telling them why.
  • Rewatch Bonus: After you know how Yvonne is planning to kill Yusho Sakaki at the end of 14.5th Show, the dynamic between Yvonne and Yusho in this chapter and the one prior make much more sense.
  • Running Gag:
    • Rin, Ruri and Yuzu keep getting called their dub (nick)names (Rinrin, Lulu and Zuzu)
    • One that is Played for Drama: people telling Yusho of his very smart move to leave his family behind to stop Professor Akaba's scheme without telling them or at least going back to visit.
    • People eating food whenever drama ensues.
  • School Festival: Carroll City's branch of You Show Duel School is celebrating its first one in the first part of the story.
  • Shout-Out to Shakespeare: The title of the first act is called "The Comedy of Errors" while Yvonne quotes phrases from his works. Moreover, many of the Trigger Phrases are actually lines from Shakespeare plays (see below).
  • Snark-to-Snark Combat: The tag team duel of Yuya and Zarc vs Yvonne and Yusho in 14th Show and 14.5th Show is just a humongous snark fest, mostly in regards to how Yuya and Zarc point how Yusho is essentially acting as Yvonne's dad.
  • Tarot Troubles:
    • Mieru's opening narrations of 7th Show has her explain a reading that she's done with the cards for what is about to happen in her future. The cards are Nine of Cups (Upright. an important event has lead her to Carroll City), Two of Pentagrams (Inverted, going through plenty of concerns) and Three of Swords (Upright, something dark approaches) True to form, that last card has her be killed off trying to save Yusho.
    • In 14.5th Show, there are three playing cards (Five of Diamonds, Six of Diamonds and Jack of Clubs) spread out. Yusho asks Yvonne if it's a good thing, and she says yes.note 
      • In the previous chapter, after Yvonne and Lady Belladonna have a talk about Yvonne having to do something important which was kill Yusho, the latter flips a card and looks in horror to find that it's the upright Nine of Swords...also known as the Nightmare Card.
  • Tempting Fate: Near the end of chapter 8, Mieru hopes that things are okay in Maiami City. Cut to Ayu crying her eyes out with the warehouse district totaled and then revealing herself as a Dark Signer and planning on having Reira become the Dark Signer for Cusillu.
  • Trigger Phrase: Various characters are put under states of hypnosis and have different phrases for them.
  • Troll: Those who live in Carroll City learn how to be expert trolls.
    • Both Willow and Moon Knight use Exact Words on Celina and Yuzu when they demand for the former to to "Tell them" what they know immediately. Moon Knight even lampshades that the look on Yuzu's face is priceless.
    • Yvonne continues this after Rin tells the former to let Yuzu go. Yvonne complies...and throws Yuzu onto Rin. She also decides to use Ambiguous Syntax on Edo when he tells her to "come with us".
    • During his duel with Edo, Max tells Toon Dark Magician Girl to attack directly. When Edo points out that there's no Toon World on the field so she can't, Max drops to his knees in despair...before revealing that Toon Dark Magician Girl is the only Toon who doesn't need Toon World for her to attack directly.
  • Wham Episode:
    • 6th Show: while Dawn duels Sen, Ayu is killed and becomes a Dark Signer.
    • 8th Show: Ryoken has both Seto Kaiba and Sen under his control, ready to convert them into the Knights of Hanoi.
    • 9th Show: Ayu fully becoming a Dark Signer and she plans on making Reira the Dark Signer for Cusillu.
    • 10th Show: Zarc has fully control of Yuya, Yuto and Yugo, the four have now entered Carroll City along with Edo Phoenix and Obelisk Force members.
    • 11th Show: The invasion into Carroll City begins which includes Yusho reuniting with Yuzu and Yuya, Mieru killed trying to save Yusho from dying and Max defeating Edo and planning to have him transformed just like Ryo was. Oh and Seto has Katsuya hypnotized for nefarious reasons.
    • 14th/14th.5 Show: Pretty much everything about the tag-team duel is this but highlights include: Yusho revealing that he has Pendulum Monsters and can Xyz Summon, Yvonne getting the Zefra Pendulum Monsters, the climatic final battle at the carousel, Yvonne killing Yusho Sakaki in front of a live audience and Yusho encountering Wiraqocha Rasca which the implications being that he is becoming the Dark Signer of the Raptor.
  • Wham Line:
    • The second chapter has Guignol about to return to her world only to stop when she senses someone behind him. Said someone?
    Guignol: (smirks) Yusho Sakaki...I knew'd you come.
    • The tenth chapter has Sora trying to save Yuri and his Madness Mantra is already terrifying enough, it's what Yvonne says next that gives a good picture of what she's done to him.
    • In that very same chapter earlier on, Shoichi Kusanagi is ready to help create cookies based off of Sen and Seto with Dawn stating,
    Dawn: Glad you're on board. Then again...you kinda have no choice but to be.
    • 14th Show has Yusho show off two in quick succession.
    Yusho: Tell me Yuya, have you mastered the art of Xyz Summoning?
    Yusho: I build the Overlay Network!
    • The end of 14.5th Show: Yvonne asks Yusho if Yuzu gave him a message. When Yusho replies that he hasn't, Yvonne acts unlike her until she states:
    Yvone: Yusho Sakaki...A...a...a new purpose awaits you!
    • And the final line of that chapter:
    ???: (to Yusho) But...you may call me Wiraqocha Rasca.
    • The flashback of 15th Show has a retroactive one.
    Yvonne: So for this first round of information, you will only remember it once someone tells you ‘Yusho, we’re ready to fight.’
  • Wham Shot: Who is the one dressed as the Plague Doctor in chapter 3? An alternate version of Seto Kaiba.
  • What If?: The author based this story after one called "Signs of Renewal" which is what would happen if Rin and Ruri became Dark Signers. Instead, she now asks what if the boys became Dark Signers.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Yuri has never been shown signs of affection before, so he's unsure of himself when Saki decides to hug him in the tenth chapter.
  • World of Snark: Carroll City citizens utterly drip with snark and many of the Arc-V characters join in on the snarkfest.
  • Yaoi Fangirl: Dawn loves watching her brother and his boyfriend "play paddycake" through security cameras. She also sees the sexual tension between Zarc and Yusho.

Tropes for Mors Tua, Vita Mia

  • Audience Surrogate: Mokuba acts like this for the first chapter when Yvonne, May and Dawn explain the purpose of the You Show Duel School and their plan to build a team of duelists to stop Professor Akaba and Academia.
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • In "Karakuri Circus", Serenity states a long story about the origin of the "Court of Strings" and about the flower-girl who was pivotal to it all. When Brendan and Max asks if she was that little girl, Serenity answers that she wasn't. The end of the story reveals that it was Lady Shirobara.
      • In the same episode, Joey's circus involves Frightfur monsters and Yvonne expects that his deck is based on this. Cue him summoning Karakuri monsters to which he states that the first rule of magic is deception.
  • Big "WHAT?!": In "Karakuri Circus", Yvonne shouts this after learning (offscreen) that Joey Wheeler (her opponent) is the reincarnation of the legendary master puppeteer of an old fairy tale.
  • Call-Forward: In the "Karakuri Circus" story, Joey states that the first rule about magic is deception; Guignol (Yvonne) would state something on those lines when she duels Sora in Mors Omnibus.
  • Foreshadowing: When dueling Joey in "Karakuri Circus", Joey states how the first rule of magic is deception. This is a clue on how he used Yvonne's puppets to lure her out [[spoiler:and hiding the fact that his true targets are Yusaku, Specter and Takeru since Yvonne transformed them into puppets for her show.)
  • Framing Device: Trip (as his role of The Curious) provides a narration for each story before bringing in the storyteller (the focus character) to begin each tale.
  • Mood Whiplash: When Dawn enters the night garden in the first story, she accidentally steps on a flower. When she steps back to see what happened, the narration turns dark when it's revealed that she stepped on a hand.
  • Prequel: The collection takes place three years prior to Mors Omnibus.
  • Something About a Rose: Lady Shirobara in the first story uses the Black Garden Field Spell and Rose Dragons. Her name even means "White Rose" in Japanese.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: Yusho Sakaki is explained in the narration on having been hurled to Carroll City in his attempt to stop Professor Akaba. That, plus his encounter with Yvonne, May and Dawn is what would set up the You Show Duel School of Carroll City.
  • Wham Line: "Karakuri Circus": After Serenity explains her past in regards to the Court of String, she drops this bombshell:
    Serenity: Well, it seemed as if Lady Belladonna decreed that he was to be the reincarnation of the master puppeteer.
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