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Naofumi Iwatani was summoned to Melromarc as the Shield Hero. Everything looked great... until he overheard Itsuki and Motoyasu talking about parties sharing experience from kills outside his inn room. He then finds out some stuff from his help guide that Malty hadn't told him about.

Hope of the Shield Hero is a The Rising of the Shield Hero fanfic written by Allen Blaster, and can be read on FanFiction.Net here.

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Hope of the Shield Hero provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Intelligence: In-canon (that includes the light novel, the manga and the anime), the other three heroes are all complete idiots and more of a detriment to the people than they are saviors, willing to believe anything anybody tells them without proof and usually assume the worst of Naofumi. Here, Ren and Itsuki are not so gullible, even trying to help Naofumi avoid being captured by the church when they overhear what the knights intend to do. They also don't buy into Malty's False Rape Accusation, Ren having known a real victim of sexual assault in his old life and seeing right through her.
    • A downplayed example with Motoyasu, as while he does notice that Raphtalia's close relationship with Naofumi is more genuine than he thought, he immediately discards the notion when Malty accuses Naofumi of forcing her to act like it while under her slave crest.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: While Naofumi is still cynical and slow to trust, he is noticeably far less unscrupulous than his canon-counterpart, treating Raphtalia less harshly when he buys her and even acknowledging the love she feels for him when she goes back to him when her slave crest is removed.
    • Ren and Itsuki to a lesser extent are a lot more nicer and trusting towards Naofumi. Ren ends up giving Naofumi several tips he had previously and becomes an ally of sorts.
  • Armor-Piercing Attack: Hope Asunder, the first skill Naofumi learns from the Hopeful Series. By spending Stamina, he can reduce an enemy's defense for a time, and if the enemy is armored the attack can destroy the armor and damage said enemy. This allows him to win the duel against Motoyasu even after Malty's cheap shot.
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  • Bestiality Is Depraved: According to the Church of the Three Heroes' theology, demi-humans are the product of humans mating with monsters and are thus abominations in the eyes of God, this being a primary motivator for racism against them in Melromarc.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Naofumi and Raphtalia stop by a town whose Lord is the Father of one of Raphtalia's old friends.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: The Witch who runs the magic shop claims that because Naofumi's magical affinities - Healing and Support Magic - are exceedingly rare separate, let alone together, this greatly limits the type of magic Naofumi is capable of learning.
  • Does This Make Me Look Fat?: Raphtalia asks this of Naofumi with a new set of armor. Naofumi is immediately set off by this, trying to fish for the right words to say to her, only for Raphtalia to admit she was just messing with him.
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  • Exact Eavesdropping: The For Want of a Nail. When Naofumi overhears Itsuki and Motoyasu speak about mechanics he didn't know about, trying to find answers from Malty allows him to discover her plans.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Itsuki and Ren intervene in the aftermath of the duel, disgusted by the way the King and Malty are acting towards Naofumi, outright telling the King that either he abides by the deal and lets Naofumi go (since he clearly won the duel and the King only declared otherwise on a whim) or they will refuse to aid Melromarc in the future Waves.
  • For Want of a Nail: Naofumi overhears Malty plotting to frame him with a False Rape Accusation instead of Naofumi being forced to the castle to be charged with the crime.
    • Naofumi goes to Elhart for help and explains to him what Malty is planning to do, so Elhart never suspects him of the rape.
    • Because he ran from the capital before Malty could have him arrested, he is only seen as more guilty and declared a fugitive by the royal guard, the King intending to have him thrown in the dungeon and only let out to fight the waves. Naofumi only attends the celebration after the first wave because he was invited by some of the guard with a guarantee that he would not be arrested.
    • Naofumi actually wins the duel against Motoyasu, forcing him to surrender and accept defeat. The only reason he's declared the loser is because the King claims otherwise.
    • Queen Mirelia is already aware of the Pope's intentions in overthrowing the royal family.
    • Itsuki decides to put his efforts into helping demihumans and weed out corrupt nobles against them, Raphtalia suggests him to go to Van Reichnott as a potential ally.
    • Naofumi learns about level-ups with the Dragon Hourglass and the Weapon Copy system from Ren and Itsuki after his duel with Motoyasu and not after the Pope is defeated.
    • He is also made aware of Raphtalia's not-so-platonic feelings for him sooner.
    • Without Naofumi there to counter Motoyasu and challenge him over the latter's takeover of Lute, the townspeople are on the edge of outright rebellion.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: Discussed. Itsuki offers to temporarily add Naofumi and Raphtalia to his party as Naofumi hadn't had a chance to register the Dragon Hourglass yet. Naofumi turns him down, instead opting to break into the Church of Three Heroes and force his way to the Hourglass with seconds to spare before the Wave starts
  • Good Weapon, Evil Weapon: While the Cursed Series weapons still exist, here there is the addition of the Hopeful Series, a series of weapons Naofumi unlocks when Raphtalia declares her complete trust in him even after her slave crest is removed.
  • Ignored Epiphany: When the people of Lute begin to jeer at him for forcing absurdly huge taxes to enter or leave their town, Motoyasu wonders if he is actually making a mistake - only for his normal Never My Fault behaviour to return seconds later.
  • In Spite of a Nail: Naofumi still winds up buying Raphtalia out of necessity.
    • Though his False Rape Accusation doesn't go the same way as in canon, Naofumi still suffers severe psychological trauma that leaves him unable to taste food or see Raphtalia for her actual physical age.
    • Despite Naofumi being able to defeat Motoyasu in their duel for Raphtalia's freedom, he is still declared the loser when Malty accuses Raphtalia of using magic to cheat and her slave crest is still forcibly removed.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: Naofumi and Raphtalia, particularly as they discuss Filo behaving as if she were their daughter.
  • Love Epiphany: Slow, but Naofumi realizes that he is actually falling for Raphtalia after her reaffirming her Undying Loyalty to him.
  • Running Gag: Whenever they start selling things, Raphtalia always sells more than Naofumi.
  • Spotting the Thread: Ren immediately becomes suspicious of Malty's accusations because she, despite claiming that Naofumi tried to assault her, she immediately hopped into Motoyasu's bed the very same night Naofumi fled.
  • The Talk: When Naofumi realizes that Raphtalia is in serious need of learning about this, he tries to find a demihuman old enough to give her one.


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