Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Page 803

Emiliana was surprised to see that so many of the non-servants had accompanied Octavia and the others to the battlefield.

They’ll leave the fighting to the servants, of course,’ Chergoa explained. ‘Instead, they’ll provide operational support. Things like keeping civilians away from the battle, maintaining supplies, organizing teams and strategies--that sort of thing. Normal people can be particularly helpful when they observe the battle from a distance and feed information to the combatants via radio. Signal jammers are often deployed as a disruptive countermeasure, and then it usually becomes a contest of which side can neutralize the others’ jammers first. And that’s because in a fight between two forces of roughly equal size and strength, the more organized one almost always wins.

Emiliana couldn’t help wondering something as she listened. ‘How many battles have you been in?

Enough to make me stop counting.

That made her think of another question. ‘Why did you decide to be my reaper?

Chergoa paused. ‘Well, you and I were supposed to join the Vanguard. That was my reason for wanting a new servant. It was less about you specifically. I did observe you for a little while, though. You seemed nice enough.

That is it? We’re bound together for the rest of my life, and that is all the thought you put into it?

What can I say? I’m not very picky. So long as you’re not a violent psychopath, I’m not bothered about it.

Wow... then, why did you decide to join the Vanguard?

Ah. It was Axiolis who convinced me. He’d been trying to convert me for ages. Finally wore me down.

You must be regretting it now.

Pfft, no. Maybe it’s hard for you to believe, but I’m glad I’m here with you.

Beneath her dark mask, Emiliana’s expression distorted. ‘Why?

Well, if you didn’t have me, you could’ve ended up stuck with some dumbass who gives horrible advice. And then what would you do?

Are you... making a joke?

Yes, Emiliana. Yes, I am. Good catch.

I was hoping for an actual answer...

It WAS an actual answer,’ said Chergoa. ‘And it was also a joke. Multitasking, you see.

I don’t understand...

Chergoa gave a faint laugh. ‘Holy shit, girl. I’m saying that I’m glad I can be here with you while you weather this storm of bullshit. Don’t think for a moment that I regret taking you on as my servant.


  1. I like Chergoa, she seems fun.

  2. Can't wait for them to meet. Hilarity will ensue.

  3. So I've been thinking. The two only ways for a servant to die are to kill their reaper, and for their reaper to release them. And then I thought about Bohwanox, and how he said he'd never had a servant, while Garovel has experience with such things.

    But keeping in mind the first point, it's actually pretty hard to steal a servant's brain to force their reaper to release them. So a good chunk of reapers who HAVE had servants in the past, but don't right now, would have released their servant willingly.

    Now, I can totally understand that you'd get kinda tired after centuries, but, well, it'd take a while for that to happen. Humans are pretty much programmed to WANT to live, after all. So for a reaper to release their servant willingly, the servant would usually have to be pretty old, which means the servant would have to be pretty old themselves, and we know millenia-old reapers like Garovel are actually a minority, most of them are younger than that. They'd also have to be pretty lucky for their servant to reach that age, because most servants don't reach hundreds of years of age.

    So. Forcing a reaper to release their servant is pretty hard. All the servant kills we've seen in the story have involved killing the reaper, too. Zeff is the only servant we've seen to be succesfully captured, and they only bothered because they want information. And reapers releasing their servant willingly are pretty rare. Which means most dead servants also involve a dead reaper. Which means most reapers with a servant are on their FIRST servant, and have no prior experience.

    And then I thought about that dumbass with a destruction servant who got his ass killed by Roman, and I thought: "this might actually explain some things".

  4. While humans are programmed to want to live we are also programmed to only live for approximately 100 years.
    This means that after a servant has been around for more than 100 years there is a good chance that they start having a a mental breakdown similiar to the classic 'mid-life crisis' except several orders of magnitude worse.

  5. That's a position that's pretty impossible to support, given that it assumes that the outside limit of attainable age today is the point at which we're programmed to die. We're not. For most of human history, living to sixty was incredible. Assuming we've got some kind of psychological kill switch at triple digits is very unfounded.

  6. I feel a limit of 100 is reasonable, but not for the reasons listed. While Abolish recruits mainly from the crazy crowds, Vanguard and that neutral group do not. Look at the Rainlords. They are a functioning set of clans that have families, children, grandchildren, and each member gets a reaper. It is very likely that at some point, the older Rainlords say "well, I had a good life, time to free up my Reaper for when my Great Grandson turns 14 (or whatever) next year/month/whenever." Otherwise, they should be a faction of enough importance to not only dominate a country, but an entire continent, especially considering that having multiple children seems to be a trend. Seriously, if my family had reapers, the lot of them, starting with my great grand parents, we would have a solid 50 or so reapers by now, just on my mothers side. And only a handful of my generation has kids.

    As for Abolish, well, they're crazy. Crazy plus inexperience in combat normally leads to something along the lines of death. So that would be a good reason why they aren't full to the brim with Super Saiyan 4 Gogeta types flying around. Yeah, I went there.

  7. I think that this is a situation we are still in the dark on. Given the amount of violence that seems to be typical for most reapers in Vanguard or Abolish it seems to me that a far more reasonable assumption is that instead of any particular number of years it seems more likely that the servants become tired of fighting and/or living that lifestyle and ask to be released rather than continue. Fact is most servants weren't necessarily brought back to achieve their own goals but those of their reaper. Also being a servant doesn't necessarily equate to immortality. Servants can and do still age unless the reaper stops it so I would assume that it would still be possible to pass from old age. At that point all the reaper would be able to do is revive them to die again and again so it would basically be torture and that assumes a reaper can do so indefinitely.

  8. Welcome. I'll try not to keep you waiting too long. :)

  9. For a story this good I will be as patient as is necessary :) Just don't overwork yourself!

  10. Don't forget, in addition to "passing on the torch", getting tired of like and getting jarred, there are also servants who actually get themselves fired, like that one who turned on Garovel.

    Anyways. 'So long as you’re not' --> I know this is technically correct, but 'as long as' simply seems to flow a bit better. I'm just nitpicking, and it's but a personal preference, but I wanted to point it out anyway. Now let the long wait begin...

  12. Just by those lines of Chergoa you already know she has to be Garovels sibling...