You can 100-per-cent rest assured Vanguard will not let those two poor soldiers, who were chased by Spartacus in that god awful swimsuit, EVER live it down.
Scarring images aside, this fragment surprised me. It was probably the most difficult one to write, mostly because I haven’t written a true third-person “no-focus” fragment since “Eternal Summer” way back in Season 2. It felt strange, and I was second guessing myself every second with switching POVs while trying to keep everything flowing together. Next hardest part was containing the length. Sure I’m hardly known for my brevity (read: lack thereof), but this one really threatened to drone on, which I hoped it didn’t after cuts and adjustments.
At the same time, I needed to ensure Fragments’ core premise can be seen as safely preserved while also placing new bricks for potential conflict in the future. Stuff from minor abrasion to outright confrontational stuff, mostly thanks to Saber Alter, but also because of some Clock Tower mages and Vigil partial distrust of each other. Can’t have things being too smooth and relaxed.
So the underlying theme is the title: First impressions for everyone on both sides. Again, I tried to ensure everything fit with it, flowed, and merged together as best as I could. Even after a few revisions, I still don’t feel as confident with this fragment as I do with nearly all others, but I still believe it delivered the general message, mood, and impression… while also dropping two major bombs you couldn’t miss.
Like hitting the broad side of a barn at two feet with a light machine gun bolted to the ground sorta guaranteed.
While one is definitely obvious, and won’t be shown, I’m sure a few took note of the name-dropped collaboration project between the Vigil and Chaldea. While it should be fairly indicative, I will remind you it could still swing the other way and the project could be used for something else. I won’t spoil anything here because some read the insights before the fragment (should be the other way around, to be fair), but the project itself will have a different intended purpose in FoC… but that doesn’t mean it still can’t be used for what it is in canon, if you get what I’m saying.
All will be slowly unveiled in time, as usual.
To ease concerns, no, not everyone in the Vigil will be big characters and such. Some named ones, like Fadil and maybe the Norwegian Mobius, will be a minor at most like Janice or Chef Leandre. Sergei and Skyler are definitely majors. Bazett and Kairi are obviously the popular cameos. Saber Alter is… well, you know. There and now can get her own fragment in time. Essentially: Lot of new names in the ever-growing character bloat, but I ensured it was only a minor headache for you to keep track of by using nationalities to swiftly differentiate.
To address a final elephant in the room: Yes. It’s the beginning of something very unique for Kiyohime, but don’t expect things to just be a snap of the fingers away from glory. As with bigger overarching points, I intend to paint it carefully and properly, so it will take time.
Reminding note: There’s no supplements anymore besides Lost Shards. EOR1 will not be novelized in the series, but I’ll be working on a paraphrasing/spark notes of what transpired (Not too different). Then maybe some of you may request a short scene or two you found interesting I could flesh out as a shard.
Teaser: This was a world that developed of its own accord. It was not the one he dreamed of, but it was impressive nonetheless; He’d never fault humanity for consistent progress. However, he was frustrated for being forgotten… or so he thought. It wasn’t until Tyler told him of that strange fantasy obsession that his hope grew. And thus, when they returned, he realized he wasn’t alone in his fascination of a world powered by steam.