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The Road Not Trekked Series is a Fire Emblem Fates fanfic written by SilverShadow1711. It has four parts, three of which are completed:


    Series in general 
  • Adaptational Badass: In this story, Hinoka and Camilla have their own personal holy weapons, the naginata Amaterasu and the axe Artemis respectively.
  • Adaptational Heroism: In the original game, Garon would easily turn on his blood children the minute he thought they were a threat. In this story, he is still acting out of a twisted love for them, raising Nerr in order to sacrifice her to Anankos so that his own children wouldn't have to suffer the same fate.
  • Adaptational Jerkass:
    • Due to her own upbringing, Nerr is incredibly short-tempered and has no patience for fools.
    • In The Falling Light and The Ephemeral Equinox, Takumi's level of verbal hostility towards Nerr comes dangerously close to his treatment of Corrin in canon Conquest. In the former, he only starts to try to reach out to her after meeting the Rainbow Sage, compared to his demeanor becoming more reasonable after Mokushu in canon Birthright. In the latter, he starts getting better during the campaign in Valla, compared to his attitude immediately improving upon his recruitment in Izumo in canon Revelation.
    • Elise is far more verbally hostile towards the Hoshidans than in canon. While her attitude makes sense in The Falling Light where said Hoshidans are marching up her front porch, in The Ephemeral Equinox she tells Takumi to go sleep in the stables unprovoked.
  • Adaptational Villainy: In canon Fates, all evidence indicates that Sumeragi was an honorable king. In this story, Shura accuses him of callously abandoning Kohga to be destroyed by Mokushu and denying him asylum.
  • Adaptation Deviation:
    • Due to the reduced presence of the Astral Plane, the circumstances of Felicia reuniting with Nerr are changed in all three routes.
      • In The Rising Dark, Felicia rejoins Nerr by sneaking to her side with the reserves instead of finding her in the Astral Plane.
      • In The Falling Light, Felicia is stationed at Castle Macarath with her sister and rejoins the party there instead of shortly after Mount Garou.
      • In The Ephemeral Equinox, Felicia is sent to fight Nerr along with Flora and Camilla. She leaves her company for the time being after the fight and reappears at the Bottomless Canyon, but is booted out of the party to focus on keeping the Ice Tribe safe.
    • In canon Fates, Mozu is recruited in a paralogue unlocked after chapter 7, which would be the Woods of the Forlorn in Conquest and the first trip to Valla in Revelation. In The Rising Dark, she is encountered at the beginning of the invasion of Hoshido, equivalent to between chapters 16 and 17, while in The Ephemeral Equinox she is encountered during the battle with Mokushu, equivalent to chapter 11. In addition, her village is wiped out by Mokushujin bandits instead of Nohrian Faceless.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted big-time; Nerr ends up incredibly scarred by each route's events.
  • Berserk Button: Bringing up Anankos or anything to do with him is a quick and easy way to set Azura off.
  • Commander Contrarian: Takumi takes it upon himself to argue and disagree with every suggestion Nerr makes when he is her ally.
  • Death Seeker: As events progress, Nerr slowly loses her will to live. It's especially pronounced in The Falling Light.
  • Eaten Alive: Hans' ultimate fate in both The Rising Dark and The Falling Light, at Nerr's hands- er, claws.
  • Fantastic Racism: Everyone from Hoshido or Nohr considers the other country to be a bunch of soulless, irredeemable savages.
  • Fantastic Slur: Hoshidans and Nohrians are often derisively referred to as "byaks" and "anyans" respectively, terms derived from the kingdoms' names in Japanese.
  • Fire/Ice Duo: Hinoka wields Amaterasu, a naginata of fire, while Camilla wields Artemis, an axe of ice. They are the rival older sisters for Nerr.
  • Gorn: The series does not shy away from describing the bloodbath of war.
  • Hypocrite: Azura repeatedly treats returning to Nohr as a horrible and wrong decision, yet expresses no qualms about siding with Hoshido despite her circumstances being the effective inverse of Nerr's.
  • In-Series Nickname:
    • Some characters use their Japanese names as full names and their localized names as diminutives (for example, Suzukaze/Kaze and Benoit/Benny).
    • After her choice, Nerr is typically referred to as "Princess Traitor" by the people she turns on.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Nerr is rather short-tempered with people she doesn't like, but will go to hell and back for those she cares about.
  • Likes Older Men: Nerr's main love interest is Gunter, and in The Rising Dark she idly notes at one point that she might be attracted to Kaze if he had gray hair and a few more wrinkles.
  • Men Are the Expendable Gender: Averted. Some mooks are described as female.
  • Non-Action Guy: Well, girl. Azura means well and talks big, but Nerr notes she couldn't protect a garden from a hungry bunny.
  • Official Couple: Nerr has feelings for Gunter, but their fate depends on the route.
    • In The Rising Dark, she confesses to him in chapter 17, and he reciprocates. They get married in the epilogue.
    • In The Falling Light, she never learns of his survival, and takes her feelings to her grave.
  • Reduced to Ratburgers: During Nerr's childhood, she and her retainers would be reduced to eating things like rats and tree bark during times of famine.
  • Screw Destiny: Nerr refuses to put any stock in fate or destiny.
    Nerr: Fate is the excuse weak people use to feel better about horrible things happening to them.
  • Stress Vomit: Nerr often partakes in this when things go horribly wrong for her.
  • Tap on the Head: Deconstructed; the author's notes at the end of the final fight with Ryoma in The Rising Dark indicate that the blow to the head Rinkah gave Nerr caused her permanent brain damage and is at least partially responsible for her increasingly manic behavior late in any route.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Reina for the Hoshidans and Peri for the Nohrians. Both women are treated by Nerr as dangerous psychopaths.
  • Victoria's Secret Compartment: Nerr keeps a handkerchief in her bra, taking a page out of Camilla's book.
  • War Is Hell: Nerr's constant battles and the death surrounding her take a toll on her in every route.
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    The Road Not Trekked 
  • Cliffhanger: The story ends with Nerr about to make her fateful decision.
  • Gilded Cage: Shirasagi is this to Nerr. She is pampered and showered with affection, but not allowed to leave.
  • I Lied: Mikoto agrees to allow Nerr to leave if she helps Ryoma clear out some Faceless. Afterwards, she goes back on her word.

    The Rising Dark 
  • Abusive Parents: When Flora plays along with Nerr's lie to protect her and gets caught, Kilma actually strikes her.
  • Adaptational Heroism: In canon Fates, Senno is the boss of a random sidequest who is seen sacking a town for rare tomes. Here, he's an old acquaintance of Shura who helps heal a mortally ill Nerr (even if he is still a greedy sonuvabitch).
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Kilma hits Flora when she is caught trying to protect Nerr. No indication is given in canon that he is physically abusive to his daughters in any way.
  • Adaptation Deviation: In this version, Nerr's issue with Kotaro is not that he razed Kohga and captured Kagero, but that he lied to her face about it.
  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • Kaze's Heel–Face Turn is further justified by the revelation that the Hoshidan nobility is getting out of control in the face of Azura's "deportation", talking of conquering Nohr and massacring the royal family in revenge for Mikoto's death.
    • Nerr and Azura's plan to kill Garon is given more justification. Nohr needs to conquer Hoshido for its resources, and if Garon dies during the war, the ensuing Roaring Rampage of Revenge Xander will undertake will make Takumi look like a baby throwing a temper tantrum.
    • Gunter's backstory, relegated to Revelation in canon Fates, is recounted here.
    • Iago is given some backstory: his family was torn apart when his father slept with a Hoshidan merchant.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: The first part of Chapter 25 takes place from Azura's perspective.
  • And There Was Much Rejoicing: Everyone celebrates when Kotaro bites it. Even the Mokushujin civilians.
  • Angrish: Nerr's reaction when Fuga challenges her to a fight is "So angry... can't... form... sentences...!"
  • Ax-Crazy: Discussed when Nerr idly wonders why everyone who wields an axe seems to be violently unhinged (forgetting about Arthur).
  • Badass Boast: When Xander decides to Hold the Line at the Eternal Staircase.
    Nerr: Thirty seconds, Xander. You have thirty seconds to follow, or I'm coming back for you.
    Xander: What am I to do with the other twenty-five?
  • Body Horror:
    • After sitting on the Hoshidan throne, Garon's entire left side of his body becomes a giant mass of cancerous flesh.
    • After his resurrection by Anankos, Takumi is basically a walking corpse; he is missing the right half of his head, his body is infested with maggots, and his jaw actually comes unhinged when he tries to speak.
  • Convenient Miscarriage: Nerr miscarries her baby about a week before Suzanoh.
  • Continuity Nod: In chapter 3, Nerr recalls the legend of Dame Miledy, who turned on her country to remain loyal to her liege.
  • Demoted to Extra: Flora exits the plot entirely after the Ice Tribe rebellion, and only returns for the epilogue.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Scarlet may hate the Nohrian monarchy's guts, but even she's a little disturbed when Takumi shoots Elise for backtalking him.
  • Eye Scream: Shura jams an arrow into Kotaro's eye right before giving him a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
  • Facepalm: Silas does so when Elise stupidly gives away their identities to Kilma, complete with broken sob. (Or maybe it was Nerr. She can't really tell.)
  • From a Certain Point of View: Nerr claims to the Mokushujin civilians that they were ambushed by ninja and Kotaro was killed in the battle, neglecting to mention that Kotaro led said ambush.
  • Gaslighting: After Garon's reinforcements arrive to aid Nerr, Nerr blows off steam by stalking and messing with Hans.
  • Got Volunteered: Nerr's first conversation with Niles lasts approximately 30 seconds before she "volunteers" him to act as mage bait.
  • Hypocrite: When Leo gives Nerr shit about sparing and recruiting Shura, she reminds him that he and Camilla have people who have done far worse serving as their retainers.
  • If I Can't Have You...: Ryoma in chapter 1.
    Ryoma: I refuse to let you return to your captors, Nerrida. We will settle this on the battlefield, for as the gods are my witness, if I can't have you as a sister, I'll have you as a trophy!
  • I Just Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Of the Hoshidan royalty, Sakura alone accepts Nerr's decision to return to Nohr as long as she is happy.
  • I Never Said It Was Poison: When Nerr asks Garon if he sent her to Hoshido to die, he claims he knows nothing about the attack. Nerr retorts that she never mentioned an attack.
  • I Never Told You My Name: Zola-as-Izana nearly slips up by referring to Elise by name, but manages to cover it up by claiming he knows the names of all of the Nohrian royals.
  • Inspirational Insult: When recruiting Charlotte, Nerr tells her that she can't babysit a delicate flower and advises her to run away in order to goad out her Blood Knight side.
  • Ironic Echo: Nerr pulls one on Ryoma.
    Ryoma, before their first fight: I refuse to let you return to your captors, Nerrida. We will settle this on the battlefield, for as the gods are my witness, if I can't have you as a sister, I'll have you as a trophy!
    Nerr, before their final fight: She begged me with her dying breath not to hurt you, but I don't make promises I can't keep. I figured, if I couldn't have her as a sister, I'd just have her as a trophy.
  • Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: Nerr is forced to fight the battle in Cyrkensia in a dress instead of proper armor.
  • Laughing Mad: Nerr's reaction to Ryoma committing seppuku.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: Gunter dryly notes that "you always get pregnant when you can't afford to" after realizing that Nerr is pregnant with his child.
  • Named by the Adaptation: Gunter's first wife is given the name Michaela, and his deceased child is named Christoph.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Elise agrees to keep Nerr and Gunter's engagement a secret, but then runs off to blab to Leo and is overheard by Peri, who spills it to Xander in order to spite Nerr for stopping her attempted murder of Felicia.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Hans may be a violent brute, but even he isn't stupid enough to openly disrespect Nerr in front of her family the way Iago does.
  • Pregnant Badass: Nerr gets pregnant in Izumo, learns she is with child after the Eternal Stairway, and keeps fighting regardless. She miscarries shortly before the battle at the Great Wall of Suzanoh.
  • Pummeling the Corpse: Shura smashes Kotaro's face in and keeps going long after he bites it.
  • Rasputinian Death: When Takumi is finally killed permanently, he is horizontally bisected, ripped apart by Brynhildr, and burned to ash by Ragnarok.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Nerr isn't fooled by Azura's Paper-Thin Disguise for a second in Cyrkensia. She only fools the others because they are too far away (Camilla and Elise) or haven't interacted with her enough (Garon and Leo).
    • When Peri attacks Felicia over some spilled tea, Nerr treats her exactly the way you'd expect someone to treat a violent psychopath: she clubs her, stabs her in the hand, and warns her in no uncertain terms that the next time she tries something like that, she's getting dismembered. Slowly.
    • Three months of near-complete solitude in Valla did a number on Gunter's mental health, and he has symptoms of PTSD upon returning.
    • A war is no place for a pregnant woman; Nerr continuing to fight when pregnant with a child results in her miscarrying.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: When Xander and Camilla get angry that Nerr has hooked up with Gunter, Nerr completely explodes and reminds them that both of them employ cold-blooded murderers as their personal retainers and sweep their unsavory actions under the rug, including the attempted murder of one of her own retainers.
  • Shout-Out: When describing the legend of the Yato, Nerr sarcastically makes a pose and says "In the name of the Yato, I'll punish you!"
  • Spiteful Spit: After Kotaro is killed by Shura, Saizo takes a moment to spit on his corpse.
  • That Man Is Dead: Nerr states this when she forces Shura back in line after he questions the alliance with Mokushu.
    Silas: ...the Nerr I know doesn't talk to people like that.
    Nerr: The Nerr you know is decomposing at the bottom of the Bottomless Canyon, Silas, so just drop it.
  • Villain Has a Point: Nerr realizes that Hans is probably telling the truth that he was Just Following Orders when he threw Gunter into the Bottomless Canyon when he points out that he wouldn't be dumb enough to murder a princess' retainer in front of her without direct orders from higher up.
  • Wedding Day: The fic ends with Nerr and Gunter getting married.

    The Falling Light 
  • Adaptational Wimp: Due to her much more turbulent relationship with her Hoshidan kin than in canon, Nerr is unable to upgrade the Yato into the Noble Yato at Notre Sagesse.
  • Adapted Out:
    • Mozu makes no appearances in the story.
    • Chapter 21, Burning Falls, is entirely skipped over due to the unrealistic levels of Convection Schmonvection.
    • Effie and Arthur both no-show the final fight with Camilla.
  • Alcoholic Parent: Elise describes her mother as such.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Nerr has her right arm shattered in the final fight against Camilla, only manages to keep it going for the rest of the story through her draconic abilities, and has to have it amputated after Garon's death.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: And Then Nerr Was a Vallite Thrall.
  • And Then What?: Silas asks Nerr what her hopes and dreams are after the war is over, and Nerr admits she has no idea.
  • Ascended Extra: Lilith is given slightly more storyline presence.
  • Author Tract: The author's notes often go on rants about how Unintentionally Unsympathetic they consider Hoshido to be.invoked
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: Takumi and Sakura have to be dragged kicking and screaming into taking shelter in the Woods of the Forlorn because of their fears of ghosts, monsters, and ghost-monsters.
  • Break the Cutie: As Nerr presses forward, gets backstabbed, watches her friends die or denounce her, and racks up scars both physical and mental, she slowly but surely loses the will to live.
  • Cassandra Truth:
    • Nerr warns Azura that her plan to capture Garon in Cyrkensia is a horrible, horrible idea. Nobody listens. It turns out to be a horrible, horrible idea.
    • Nerr warns the Hoshidans that Nohr will invade by sea and smash right through Shirasagi without Ryoma to stop them. Nobody listens. Nohr invades by sea and smashes right through Shirasagi.
  • Chaotic Neutral: In chapter 13, the author's notes paint the Hoshido route as this; you invade another country, kill soldiers who are Just Following Orders, commit genocide against the locals, and steal all their shit.invoked
  • Condescending Compassion: When Ryoma offers to provide food and supplies to Nohr after the war, every single Nohrian in the party laughs in his face and calls him a holier-than-thou condescending prick.
  • Death by Adaptation:
    • Hana is killed in the final battle with Xander.
    • At the conclusion of the story, Nerr commits suicide.
  • Despair Event Horizon: The events of the final leg of the story prove too much for Nerr, and she shuts down after Garon's death. Her banishment from Nohr finishes off her already unstable self-esteem, and she drowns herself shortly after.
  • Downer Ending: The story ends with Nerr being unable to accept her Hoshidan family and being banished from Nohr. It's implied that she falls under the control of Anankos. (Or at the very least she commits suicide.)
  • Driven to Suicide: Nerr walks into a lake at the end of the story.
  • Dysfunction Junction: Nerr's travelling party constantly antagonizes each other.
  • Easily Forgiven: Downplayed by Azura, who shows understanding towards Shura's circumstances and why he helped kidnap her, if not quite forgiveness.
  • Enemy Mine: The Nohrians and the Hoshidans of Nerr's party are only (very, very tenuously) held together by a shared desire to kill Garon.
  • Entertainingly Wrong: In chapter 18, Azura describes Anankos as a plague that ruins all it touches. Nerr assumes she is literally talking about a plague.
  • Et Tu, Brute?:
    • This is a recurring problem for Nerr in general, who has an astonishing tendency to have her kindness thrown back in her face.
      • Nerr spares Kaze and Rinkah. They kidnap her and take her to Hoshido.
      • Nerr spares Zola. He betrays her at the first opportunity.
      • Nerr sees Jakob's relationship with Oboro as confirmation that he is no longer her devoted friend and fires him.
      • Nerr gives Shura some money. He and his bandits attack them. This one causes Nerr to briefly snap and deliver a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
      • Averted when Takumi turns out to be the (unwilling) spy in Nerr and Ryoma's party; Nerr doesn't like him enough to care.
    • Azura doesn't take it well when she learns that Yukimura hired the bandits who helped kidnap her from Nohr.
  • Eye Scream: Nerr loses her right eye in the final battle.
  • Foreshadowing: Nerr displays chronic headaches, violent tendencies, suicidal thoughts, and an increasingly hostile demeanor. All are symptoms of possession by Anankos.
  • Glasgow Grin: Silas picks up a scar from their cheek all the way to their neck in the final battle.
  • Groin Attack: Nerr makes sure to cut Hans' wee-wee off before eating him alive.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: Shura guides the Hoshidans into Krakenburg, but makes it clear that he will have no part in the regicide of his adopted homeland and deserts the group during the final fight against Iago.
  • I Can't Believe I'm Saying This: Saizo, upon learning that Garon will probably kill Kotaro as soon as You Have Outlived Your Usefulness.
    Saizo: I never dreamed I'd say this, but King Garon and I are on exactly the same page.
  • Important Haircut: After Flora's death, Nerr cuts her hair short in despair.
  • Inspirational Insult: When Iago takes control of Takumi, Nerr deliberately attacks his psychological weak points to get him to release Azura so she can cure him.
  • Miles to Go Before I Sleep: Nerr name-drops this directly during her temporary death against Garon.
  • Mr. Exposition: Nerr snidely calls Yukimura this in chapter 18.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Xander's quote before his final fight with Nerr is directly taken from Ryoma's equivalent quote in canon Conquest.
    • Xander offers the power of Siegfried to repair the Blazing Yato the same way Takumi offered Fujin Yumi in canon Conquest.
  • Noodle Incident: Apparently, Candace once cucked Shura. He does not elaborate.
  • No, You: At Fort Dragonfall.
    Iago: You are a boil on the ass of humanity that needs to be lanced.
    Nerr: A word of advice, Iago; when you're talking to me, don't interrupt your silly little speeches with insults aimed at yourself.
  • Official Couple:
    • Nerr learns in chapter 16 that Jakob and Oboro have hooked up.
    • By the time Nerr reaches the underground tunnels in Windmire, Silas and Felicia have hooked up; they plan to tie the knot in the epilogue.
    • After the final battle, Ryoma and Scarlet announce their intention to marry.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Elise, textbook Cheerful Child, blows up at the Hoshidans when they reach Windmire. This concerns Nerr greatly.
  • Persona Non Grata: Nerr is banished from Nohr at the end of the story.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Most of Nerr's problems with her Nohrian siblings stem from them refusing to either hear or believe the fact that Garon tried to have her killed, and all she wants is him dead so she can just go home.
  • Precision F-Strike:
    • When Iago tries to attack Azura while she cures Takumi of his possession, Sakura smashes him with her festal and calls him a "bastard".
    • When Ryoma agrees to let Xander have a duel with Nerr, Azura asks him if he's "out of [his] fucking mind".
  • Quit Your Whining: Takumi, when Nerr flips out after the massacre at Mount Garou.
    Takumi: Shut up. Stop being so overly dramatic. You are so gods damned pathetic, you know that? 'Oh, boo hoo; I killed people who were trying to kill me first! I am wretched!' Get a grip! This is a war; you can't pick and choose your enemies. You tried to get us through here peacefully, and there probably wouldn't have been a problem if it hadn't been for that freak explosion, but guess what? Shit happens! Now stop your damn whining; nobody has time for your pity party.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Ryoma's desire for peace with Nohr does not go over well with the Hoshidan populace, who have hated them for decades and are still reeling from the damage the war has caused.
    • Regardless of her intentions, Nerr's actions led to the deaths of over half of the Nohrian royal family. She is banished from Nohr as a result.
  • Sanity Slippage: Nerr becomes increasingly unstable and violent as the story progresses.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: One day, Oboro and Jakob are at each other's throats. The next, romance!
  • Stupid Good: Ryoma's Fatal Flaw is his idealistic desire for peace and reconciliation with Nohr blinding him to the realities of war and bitterness.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Nerr can barely stand the Hoshidans and vice-versa, but she has to work with them to kill Garon so she can return to Nohr.
  • Wham Line: At the end of the story.
    Nerr: ...where are Elise and Xander? I... I would like to see them...
    Leo: They are buried in the royal cemetery, just as all royals are. At least, those whose bodies we find. But it doesn't matter, because you will not be seeing them. [...] If you ever return to Nohr, you will be executed.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Nerr deals these out in spades to the Hoshidans; to Hinoka and Sakura's retainers for not being there during the Faceless attack in chapter 4 of the prologue, to Takumi and Ryoma's retainers for allowing them to go missing, to Ryoma for leaving their hospital at Fort Jinya criminally underdefended, to Ryoma for abandoning his siblings to go gallivanting in enemy territory for three months...
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: After getting to know him, Nerr admits that Ryoma is an idealist who genuinely wants what's best for his people. His main problem is that he lives in a fantasy world where everything will go right just because he wills it so.
  • With Friends Like These...: Nerr's "friends" among the Hoshidans can be described as allies of circumstance, at best.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: Nerr's rationale for "choosing" Hoshido; she fears Garon will have her killed if she tries to return to Nohr as things stand, so she intends to kill him and put Xander on the throne. At the end of the story, Leo banishes her from Nohr, ensuring this trope on a permanent basis.

    The Ephemeral Equinox 
  • Adaptation Deviation:
    • Instead of going directly down the Eternal Staircase, Nerr and her party circumvent it; Sakura and Hana fly over it with Subaki, Gunter goes around with Jakob, and Nerr follows in her dragon form with Azura and Kaze.
    • Instead of facing Fuga's Trial by Combat, Gunter simply places his lance to his neck and calls it a day.
    • Takumi gets possessed. Again. Fortunately, Azura is able to fix him again.
    • After the fight with Flora and Camilla, Nerr goes straight to the Rainbow Sage and fights the battle in Cyrkensia afterwards. Camilla, her retainers, Elise, and Silas are all recruited in Cyrkensia. Arthur and Effie do not join alongside Elise, but she sends for them to join up at the Bottomless Canyon.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance: Felicia reappears in chapter 12 instead of 15.
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • Nerr successfully talks her way out of fighting Camilla and her retainers this time around.
    • Laslow, already aware of the whole Anankos thing, explicitly half-asses his "fight" with Nerr and speaks on her behalf afterwards.
    • Zola betrays and kills Iago at the Bottomless Canyon, and afterwards disguises himself as Iago so the heroes can trick Garon into believing Ryoma is dead and Hoshido is his.
    • Canon Anthony gleefully betrays the party in Chapter 21. In this story, Ant is never definitively proven to be a spy for Anankos before his death.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Ryoma is far more hostile towards Nerr in Cyrkensia than in canon.
  • Adaptational Karma: Played with. While Kotaro can be killed by Saizo in canon Revelation, who definitely deserves a chunk of him, here it's Shura who does him in when in canon he can only do so in Conquest.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy:
    • In canon Revelation, Leo is genuinely hostile towards Corrin at Izumo. In this story, he quickly calms down and admits that something is very wrong with Garon.
    • After being beaten in Cyrkensia, Xander is far more reasonable and actually promises to consider her words about Anankos. This is a complete reversal from canon, where Ryoma was reasonable and Xander was hostile.
  • Adaptational Villainy: In canon Revelation, Yukimura is left to hold the fort in Hoshido while Ryoma deals with Anankos. Here he shows up at the Bottomless Canyon expecting a betrayal and hell-bent on exterminating the Nohrians once and for all.
  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • The Awakening trio's knowledge of Anankos crops up whenever relevant; Selena's knowledge is directly brought up in chapter 9, and Laslow's comes up in chapter 12.
    • Chapter 17 gives Archanea a physical location in relation to the unnamed continent Fates takes place on. According to Ryoma, it's at least a five month journey across "the dark sea".note 
  • Adaptation Name Change: Downplayed. Anthony hasn't had human contact in so long that he can barely remember his own name, and introduces himself as "Ant".
  • Adapted Out: The battle in Dia is skipped outright.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: Justified since having too many soldiers will make sneaking around harder. Nerr decides to take the nine royals, Odin, Selena, Laslow, Gunter, Jakob, Kaze, and Shura to make a manageable party.
  • At Least I Admit It: Gunter's opinion of Garon, compared favorably to Xander, who he considers to be a Dirty Coward and a Hypocrite.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Chapter 8 ends with Kotaro and the Mokushujin defeating and driving off Nerr and her retinue.
  • Berserk Button: Gunter's reaction to merely seeing the Rainbow Sage is to throw a bowl at his head and storm off.
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: Azura is scary when pissed.
    Azura: Are you two done acting like children? Because this isn't the least of what I can do. You think you feel bad now; imagine how you're going to feel when I put you in a coma, which is what I'm going to do if you don't sit down and shut up!
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: Quoth Izana: "There will be no rough housing, no horseplay, and definitely no horse-housing on my watch.
  • Breather Episode: Chapter 13 is for the most part much more low-key than the ones preceding it; the only events of note are an assassination attempt against Nerr and Gunter confessing to Nerr.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: In addition to the shit he pulls in canon, Kotaro betrays Ryoma at the Bottomless Canyon in a power play.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: After Mokushu, Kagero simply vanishes from the narrative, and it's not clear if she's travelling with Nerr and her party or if she left to deal with her own business.
  • Death by Adaptation:
    • When the heroes reach Cyrkensia, Kaden is already dead while Keaton is too far gone to save and dies in Nerr's arms.
    • At the Bottomless Canyon, Kotaro murders Saizo during his betrayal and Hinata is killed in the ensuing battle. Downplayed with Scarlet, who also dies in the carnage instead of during the descent into Valla. Finally, Yukimura shows up afterwards looking for a fight and is also slain by Nerr.
    • Due to Scarlet not being present in Valla, Jakob takes her place as the one to perform a Heroic Sacrifice to save Nerr.
  • Decapitation Presentation: After the fight at sea, Camilla decides to cut off the head of a cadaver and light it on fire so she has something to present to Garon to "prove" that Nerr is worm food.
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • Rinkah and Hayato do not join the party in the Wind Tribe village. They do show up as temporary friendly reinforcements at the Bottomless Canyon.
    • Saizo, Orochi, and Mozu leave the party after the fight with Mokushu to inform Hinoka of recent events. Saizo is ultimately killed at the Bottomless Canyon. In addition, Kagero up and vanishes after Mokushu with no explanation given to her whereabouts.
    • Downplayed by Camilla, her retainers, and Felicia, who do not join the party after the fight at sea. Instead, Camilla and co. join in Cyrkensia while Felicia temporarily joins at the Bottomless Canyon.
    • Nyx only has one quick cameo in the Sevenfold Sanctuary and does not join Nerr.
    • Kaden and Keaton do not join the party due to coming down with a terminal case of dead.
    • Nerr only takes a select few with her into Valla, leaving everyone other than the nine royals, Odin, Selena, Laslow, Gunter, Jakob, Kaze, and Shura to hold the fort.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: When Flora attacks Nerr at sea, Jakob completely flips out at her, calls her a "fucking bitch" and a "backstabbing cunt", refuses to heal her injuries after the fight, and tells her she's dead to him.
  • Facial Horror: After his trip to Valla, Gunter is left with half of his face rotted off.
  • Faking the Dead: With help from Zola disguised as Iago, the heroes decide to trick Garon into thinking Ryoma perished at the Bottomless Canyon.
  • For Want of a Nail: Unlike The Rising Dark and The Falling Light, which branch off from chapter 7 of the prologue, The Ephemeral Equinox branches off from chapter 5.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Takumi manages to set everyone off with his constant temper tantrums. Nerr, Azura, and even Sakura have all snapped at him to quit his whining at several points in the story.
  • From the Mouths of Babes: After Camilla catches Nerr and Gunter in (what she assumes to be) flagrante delicto.
    Elise: So there are no juicy details? No romantic escapades? Gunter didn't rip your bodice off and push you up against a wall and just start pounding it from behind?
    Nerr: ...who taught you those things?!
    Elise: [innocently] Niles.
    Nerr didn't know who this "Niles" was, but she would rip his tongue out to polish her armor.
  • A God Am I:
    • After subduing Xander and Ryoma in Cyrkensia, Nerr has this to say.
      Nerr: If you don't call this off right now, I swear to every god- including myself- that this WILL be your last breath.
    • Zigzagged in jest in chapter 14.
      Azura: But, then again, you are a dragon. You can probably do anything you damn well please... Somehow, I keep forgetting that you're kind of a god-
      Nerr: No. No, don't. Don't even think of considering me a 'god'; I can't answer prayers even if you leave me offerings on an altar.
      Azura: I was thinking more about denouncing you and burning you in effigy.
      Nerr: How dare you speak to your god that way!? Just because I can't answer your prayers doesn't mean I can't smite your ass!
  • Gondor Calls for Aid: Nerr calls in the tribes to help make sure everything goes smoothly at the Bottomless Canyon.
  • Hypocrite Has a Point: When Ryoma gives Nerr a What the Hell, Hero? for going Leeroy Jenkins and getting Ant killed, she tries to retort that his actions at the beginning of the war with Nohr were just as bad. He points out that he paid for it with his people's safety, his army's strength, and three of his friends' lives and that he is in a perfect position to lecture her about putting pride before reason.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: In Chapter 19, Nerr becomes emotionally unstable when Xander questions her leadership behind her back and charges into a dangerous cavern without heed for any of their safety.
  • Lesser of Two Evils: It's noted that the heroes need to prioritize dealing with Anankos over dealing with Garon because while Garon is an Evil Overlord who will conquer the continent if left unchecked, Anankos is an Omnicidal Maniac who will raze it to the ground.
  • Malicious Misnaming: Nerr makes up random names to call Zola, including Zorba, Zoloft, and Zorro.
  • Mathematician's Answer: When the group is discussing whether to climb the mountain leading to the Sevenfold Sanctuary.
    Nerr: Are you coming because I swayed your heart, or because you want to gloat if it turns out we really are wasting our time?
    Gunter: Yes.
  • No Party Like a Donner Party: Ant subsists on fruit born from the victims of Anankos' rampages, and one of them contains what is still recognizable as a human kidney.
  • Not Helping Your Case: Xander develops concerns that Nerr is going to lead the group into a trap and nearly get them all killed. Nerr decides to assuage his fears by leading the group into a trap and nearly getting them all killed.
  • Only Sane Man: Sakura and Kaze prove to be the best at avoiding interpersonal conflicts during the campaign in Valla.
  • Precision F-Strike: When sweet innocent Elise is told that beggars can't be choosers and that she has to eat what used to be human kidneys to survive, she says "The hell I can't!"
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner:
    Shura: When you meet the devil, tell him the Ashyura clan sent you. [shanks Kotaro]
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Xander gives Nerr the benefit of the doubt regarding her warnings about Anankos, and he attends the negotiations at the Bottomless Canyon in good faith.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Nerr gives one to Scarlet at the Bottomless Canyon.
    Scarlet: The name's Scarlet. I'm the leader of the Cheve rebellion that despot you're so sympathetic to massacred.
    Nerr: I see. Well, Scarlet of Chevalier, now that you've said your piece, I think it's time for you to shut your hole while the adults speak.
    Scarlet: What did you say!?
    Nerr: You heard me. There are no bourgeois squires here for you to presume to throw your weight around impressing. You are No One, the leader of Nothing. You have no power, no soldiers; your rebels couldn't survive a single attack, yet you act as though you can topple Garon's reign. You are no more important than any of the soldiers you presume to stand in front of. Even less so; I'm certain they've seen an actual battle or two, instead of simply talking about things they want to do in taverns and their parents' manors. So go take your place with them and be silent.
  • Shoot the Hostage: When Zola tries to use Sakura as a bargaining chip to escape, Nerr threatens to run them both through. She later admits she was bluffing.
  • Spared by the Adaptation:
    • Subverted by Zola; Nerr convinces Leo to spare him as in Birthright, but he is last seen being marched off to almost certain execution. And then double subverted when he shows up at the Bottomless Canyon and gets the honor of personally betraying and killing Iago.
    • Played straight by Izana, who merely collapses after passing Nerr her fortune instead of dying.
    • Also played straight by Kotaro, who survives his boss fight and pulls a The Bad Guy Wins. It's then downplayed when Shura later guts him at the Bottomless Canyon.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Gunter describes Reina as a "second, far more bloodthirsty, shadow."
  • We ARE Struggling Together: As their time in Valla takes its toll, arguments between the heroes become more frequent and loud.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • After three seconds of listening to Takumi act like a petulant child about Nerr, Sakura blows up at him.
      Nerr: Where were you when you got separated from Ryouma?
      Takumi: Fuck off; I'm not telling you anything, anyan bitch.
      Sakura: [slams the table and shoots him a Death Glare] Nii-sama, this is not the time for you to be petty and childish! W-we've been worried sick wondering what happened to you and Ryouma nii-sama, and now that we finally have a chance to find out where he is, you act like t-this?
      Takumi: This is exactly how I should be acting! It's how we all should be acting! That Nohrian came to Hoshido and ruined everything! It's her fault the war started! It's her fault so many people are dead, and you're all just willing to overlook that!? Well I'm not! She killed my mother!
      Sakura: My mother is dead too! She wasn't just your mother, Takumi! Y-you aren't the only person who's sad and angry and scared! But you are the only one who's acting like a baby about it! Nerrida nee-sama isn't the nicest person... b-but neither are you. She isn't trying to hurt us- we've been traveling with her for weeks, and neither she nor the Nohrians with her have done anything wrong. She and Azura w-want to help us, they want to help Hoshido, and they're doing more about it than you are!
    • Over the course of chapters 16 and 17, Azura, Leo, Takumi, and Nerr all rip into Odin, Laslow, and Selena for sitting on the knowledge of Anankos for five years and doing jack shit about it.
    • Chapter 20 sees Xander and Ryoma blow up at Nerr for charging on ahead, risking all of their lives, and getting Ant killed.
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