|Little Witch Academia: Witches of Midgard Chapters|
|Next:||It'll Sure to Begin|
Sometimes extraordinary things happen to people. Ask Akko. You may know her and her fellow Nine New Witches for restoring magic back to the world, something her mentor and Idol Ursula Callistis aka. Chariot du Nord failed in the past. But how about if it was just the first of her many of thrilling and exciting adventures?
Here's where Akko and her friends' adventures take an impossible turn: They are told that Viking myths are true, and everyone, even Luna Nova, are in danger. Luckily, they're given the power to save the newly restored magical world.
Ever since dawn of universe, Yggdrasil, the cosmic tree came to being with its roots cover the world, held the stars and planet in place. The tree also connected world of man, Midgard, to other eight realms, Svartalfheim (world of Svartalfheimians), Asgard (home of Gods), Vanaheim (home of Vanirs), Jotunheim (home of jötnar), Alfheim (home of elves), Niflheim (dark and cold realm), Muspelheim (realm of fire), and Helheim (realm of dishonorable death). The first witches discovered magic by drawing power from the Great Tree's branches.
But overtime, Yggdrasil's power wanes and Age of Magic come to an end, resulting magic civilization facing decline. Not only that, times of disorder fell upon Midgard when Jötnar rose against the Gods, and the war between them left humanity in disarray. Worse, the Great Winter fell into Midgard and threatened to push mankind into brink of extinction. It was during those dark times Yggdrasil bestowed power to nine witches to calm the world in Gods' absence. By aiding both humanity and witches alike as well as restoring world's magic, those witches became legendary figures known as Nine Olde Witches. Nine Olde Witches also founded Luna Nova to rehabilitate witches who had lost their place in the world. Their benevolent deeds soon attracted the attention from both surviving Jötnar and Gods alike. One of them, Loki, the jötunn who now known as God of Destruction, grew spiteful towards humanity that he set out to destroy Midgard as well. Of course, the Gods of Asgard refuse to allow this to happen.
As Loki amassed an army against the Nine Realms, the Gods of Asgard approached Nine Olde Witches, proposing the alliance against the jötnar forces through a representative in form of Heimdall, the Warrior From The North and the Guardian of Bifrost. Soon enough, the war between Gods of Asgard and Jötnar soon made its way to Midgard, with Nine Olde Witches did their part to protect mankind's sanctuary, Hoddmímis holt, against their common enemy.
In the end, Loki is defeated, and imprisoned by the people of Thapoli, followers of Nine Olde Witches who then utilized his body parts as part of their experiment to create an elite force of witch-warriors that came to known as Valkyrie Corps. But the victory didn't came from the aid of Gods of Asgard alone. Great Lindworm, the godlike progenitor of dragons and lindworms of Niflheim as well as one of two serpents who known as Nidhoggr, gave its life to aid Heimdall vanquishing Loki, though it was out of revenge for Loki had taken away its free will by turning it into his slave and weapon against the Nine Olde Witches and their followers. To honor its sacrifice and helping it regain the peace it lost because of Loki, Woodward and her fellow Nine Olde Witches purified the godlike serpent's remains with combined power of Yggdrasil and Claiomh Solais, the process which both led to the birth of plant-like animals collectively known as Pomokai Holoholonas and ensuring that Great Lindworm's soul to be reincarnated in the distant future to help it regain the peace it lost. Unfortunately, this greatly exhausted magic within the Great Tree that it reduced into Ley Lines, threatening to bring another decline of magic forces across Midgard.
Fortunately, Nine Olde Witches have a plan to restore Yggdrasil; they secretly passed down and protected the seed of Great Tree itself, Grand Triskellion, which then locked away and hidden in the forest that will be known as Forest of Arcturus. Legends also mentioned that people of Thapoli also utilized scales of Great Lindworm as part of their project to create immensely powerful suits of armor for Valkyrie Corps., though only five armors were forged from the legendary serpent's remains out of respect.
The conflict between Gods of Asgard and Jötnar, along with the Great Winter and Nine Olde Witches' part in it, faded into legends which remembered by Norsemen as Ragnarök. Everyone believes that time of Ragnarök has passed, but from the very day magic restored to the world by the Nine New Witches, the battle to determine future of both Midgard and magic would only just begun...
Three months has passed since Grand Triskellion released and Yggdrasil restored to the world once more, and life at Luna Nova progresses as it always does. However, the same cannot be said for the rest of the world. Magic is once more abundant. Witches, wizards, and other types of magic practitioners are no longer bound by the amount of magic they can use. They no longer have to rely on the use of sorcerer's stones as a source of power for magic. In essence, anyone with the ability to cast spells and use magic can do so anywhere with no restriction. For example, the witches at Luna Nova Academy can fly around Blytonbury instead of walking. It is a new convenience that everyone is grateful for.
About witches who responsible for this grand achievement, it was mentioned that only two of the involved nine were broadcast across the entire world long enough for everyone to remember. However, thanks to the intervention of Witch Community, any paparazzi or large reaction is greatly subdued. By the end of the month after the battle, no one has tried to bother the witches who stopped the missile from damaging a foreign country. It is, after all, the duties of the government that presides over the world of magic. Coordination with the government of the non-magic world was also essential to control everything.
And so, the witches at Luna Nova can continue with their studies without impediment from the outside world. Within the school, the professors try their best to limit any large disturbances. They cannot do much about flittering gossip, but as long as it is not hurting anyone they let it be.
Everything has returned to normal, that is, until one Saturday evening at the school. Akko is improving her flight broom skills ever since she able to float for the first time. The young witch had actually been rather impressed with how good her broom flight ability now, but it apparently lacked certain something. After a while, Akko decided to descent back to the school grounds and called it a day when she sees a thick black smoke rising from the woods on the western side of the school. Curious with what happened, Akko decided to investigate.
Upon getting closer to the source of the smoke, the sight that greet her is a total chaos. Smoking, smoldering craters can be seen everywhere with trees and bushes in the area either reduced into ashes, uprooted, or ripped from the earth by a powerful force, a number of roasted remains of what appeared to be large insectoid creatures littered everywhere, and in the middle of all is a strange deer-like creature. It has emerald body and head with light green thin mane, brown antlers, light green eyes with black sclera, black nose, yellow four-pointed, star-like crest on nose bridge area, armored forelegs and lower rear legs, a pair of hollowed tubes that protruding backwards on the hip area, and three long brown tail where one of them carry what appeared to be a wooden chest. It also wears what appeared to be a brown choker with yellow edge around its neck which has a white clasp with some kind of insignia vaguely resembling a sword inscribed on it and two green diamonds on the clasp's sides; and what appeared to be a brown belt with a strange device that has a spool of silverish ribbon on his left front leg that severely damaged. Ever since she enrolled at Luna Nova, Akko has seen many magical creatures, but none of them resemble this deer. Judging from its injuries and damages around it, it appeared the deer fought those monsters and won, but not before severely injured in process.
Littered corpses of insectoid monsters on the other hand, looked bizarre and repulsive. Like someone had clone a centipede, a dragonfly, and some kind of alien monster from faraway planet together, or so it is Akko thought. Their exoskeleton is black with grayish underside. They have box-shaped reptilian head with mouth full of sharp teeth, two pair of blue eyes, and a pair of sharp protrusions that protrude upwards on their lower jaw. They also have short neck, with thorax that has two pair of triangular insectoid wings and long insectoid arms end with two sharp claws. The upper part of the arms and claws are gray in color whereas the rest is black. In place of the abdomen is segmented body which obviously belonged to a centipede with eight pair of legs.
Suddenly, the deer collapsed, startling Akko that she immediately rushes to its aid.
"Are you okay? You're hurt", Akko asked as she aiding it regaining its feet. She doesn't know why she asked such question to the mysterious creature she just met, nor even she care because she felt pity to it. As soon as her hands touch the deer, Akko realizes its body actually covered by what appeared to be moss instead of thin fur of an animal.
Suddenly, the deer speak to the young witch with deep, weak voice, "No. I am dying. This wound is fatal", startling her that she almost fell out of shock at that instant. The mysterious deer inspects Akko's clothes and face where he immediately recognizes her as one of two witch students who revived Yggdrasil and destroyed Noir Rod-mutated missile. "You're one of girls who stopped the missile, do you? Are you from Luna Nova?"
"Y-yes", Akko nodded. "Come on. I'll bring you to—"
The brunette and the mysterious deer hear a loud roar from the woods. Whatever it was, the strange deer curses in desperation, "There's more of them?! Damn it! At this rate—"
Akko and the injured deer looked up and see Lotte and Sucy hovering with their brooms. Apparently, they also attracted by the same smoke which led them here. Before Akko can explain what happened to her teammates however, they see movements among the trees followed by faint growls. Realizing they don't have much time left, the injured deer hastily jerked Akko's hand off of her without warning before hands the chest on one of his tails to Akko and begged, "There is no time! You three must bring this box to a friend of mine at your school. I believe you know her as Professor Ursula Callistis, but her real name is Chariot du Nord. I'll hold them off and until you give it to her, guard it with your lives!"
"Them what?", Sucy wondered.
"Apollyons", the injured deer said with hatred as surge of green energy emanates from his body. "They after that box. I killed some of them as you can see here, but never expecting there are more of them. Now go!"
"No, we'll stay with you," Akko argued. "Maybe we can help."
"No! You must save yourselves!", the injured deer protested. " Save yourselves and get that box to Ursula! If those things get their hands on it, all will be lost."
"I think he's right, Akko", Lotte suggested uneasily. "I have a bad feeling about this."
Akko turned on Lotte, then Sucy and the injured witch. Sucy normally unfazed by things that greatly terrified her teammates and other girls, but this time, Akko can sense uneasiness in her as much as Lotte. She wanted to help the injured deer, but knows their upmost priority is to get that box to Ursula. So, she cried, "Everyone, let's get out of here!"
"Hop onto my broom", Sucy said. "You won't fast enough as of now."
With that, Akko hopped onto the Manbavaran's broom. The three friends hastily fly back to Luna Nova in that instant. Akko takes the last look on the injured deer who then charges for whatever that come for him. They heard explosions and eerie roars from behind. He must've started his fight with more Apollyons that come for him and the box. Even so, they're too late, as the box now on the hands of three young witches who unsure what to do with it except to bring it to Ursula.
The three friends managed to return to the school. As they walked through empty corridors, Akko explained to Lotte and Sucy circumstances which led to her meeting the strange deer.
"Why he wanted us bring that box to Professor Ursula so badly?", Sucy wondered.
"I don't know. He guarded this box as if his life depends on it", Akko said. "What do you think about it, Lotte?"
"I'm not sure. Perhaps the answer lies inside that box", Lotte said.
Curious with its contains, Akko opens the wooden chest, and sees three identical metallic bracelets sit inside. Each of them has different colors; red, yellow, and green, and has a matching circle with yellow outline and matching four pointed star inside.
"It's just three bracers", Sucy commented.
Akko picks up the red gauntlet. Suddenly, something like electrical shock runs through her without warning, startling the brunette that she dropped both gauntlet and the chest in that instant, spilling the rest of the chest's contents. "What was that?!", she cried.
Confused, Sucy and Lotte recover items their roommate dropped. When Lotte touches the yellow bracer, she feels same sensation and reacted the same way Akko did. Sucy on the other hand, let out her usual creepy grin upon touching the green bracer while saying, "Interesting."
Now wary with the strange deer's mysterious package, Akko abruptly takes the green gauntlet from Sucy's hands and put the rest back into the chest while saying, "W-we should get these to Professor Ursula right now! Come on!"
Akko and her two best friends about to set out for Ursula's office only to see the professor standing in front of them with her mouth hanging open.
"H-How," gaped Prof. Ursula. "How did you get those gauntlets?"
"Uh", Akko is at complete loss due to the person she looked for unexpectedly appeared before her.
"You three need to come with me", an unreadable expression is etched across the professor's face as she implored the three students to follow her. First the strange deer at the forest, then mysterious gauntlets inside wooden box the deer gave to her which intended for Professor Ursula, and now this. Akko gulped heavily. The world as Akko knows it has changed that very day. Little did she know that unlike the day she recovers Shiny Rod, which now has returned to the stars, her life will take a different turn this time.
Once she and the three students inside her office, Professor Ursula locked the door and making sure all windows are shut tight. She can't risk the information about mystical gauntlets meant to delivered to her getting out, for her enemies have become much slyer. Akko and her friends on the other hand, are on the edge. Neither of them knows what kind of situation the strange deer put them through. Professor Ursula sat down in the chair across from her, and she put a serious look on her face.
"How did you get those gauntlets?" she raised an eyebrow.
"The deer", Akko replied. "We met a strange green deer at the woods on the west of the school. He was injured, and something in the woods after him. I tried to help him, but he insisted me to bring those gauntlets to you."
"Strange green deer?", Prof. Ursula blinked. "How did he look like?"
"I'm not sure he was really a deer, but he looked just like one", Akko explained. "He has green eyes, brown antlers, and three long brown tails, I think. And he got some kind of brown choker with yellow edge and a clasp on his neck!"
"Brown choker with yellow edge and a clasp on his neck?", Prof. Ursula repeated.
"What those kids said was true, Ursula Callistis."
Everyone in that room turned around and sees a strange cat-sized creature sitting on top of the bookshelf in the office. He basically resembles a squirrel with green body, brown underbelly, two dark green stripes across the swiping tail, black nose, and lower rear legs, shoulders, and arms covered by armor plates. But the most peculiar traits are four-pointed yellow star-like crest similar to the strange deer's on his face and a pair of hollowed protrusions on his upper back. He also wears exact same choker around his neck with the deer's and a similar brown belt with a device that has a spool of silverish ribbon albeit his worn around the hip area.
The squirrel jumped to the floor, and Akko notices that even the fairly normal-looking parts of him aren't all that normal. Instead of paws, he has pointy short fingers that looked belonged to human that lacked visible claws or nails, and green eyes with black sclerae. His mouth also noticeably jagged reminiscent of fangs in spite of him obviously had true set of teeth beneath. Like the deer she met this afternoon, his body is predominantly covered by moss instead of actual fur. Akko's impression of the squirrel is cute, though she dares not to say it because the stern look of his eyes.
"It's been a while, Professor Ursula", the squirrel greets with deep, male voice, much to the surprise of Akko and her friends. "Or should I call you Professor Chariot."
"Asger? Long time no see", Ursula greets back before introduces her students, "Asger, they are my students. Akko, Lotte, and Sucy."
"M-my name is Atsuko Kagari. Just call me Akko", Akko said.
"Sucy Manbavaran", Sucy said.
"Um… Lotte Jansson", Lotte said also.
Asger nods, before turned on Akko and her companions. He inspects the trio meticulously, particularly the brunette before comments, "I see. No wonder why he entrusted you kids to carry those gauntlets for his behalf. Especially you, Akko. It's the honor to meet the witch who saved a country from a mutated missile and restore magic to this world."
"He who?", Akko wondered.
"German, the deer you three met at the forest near this campus. A friend of mine from Thapoli and good fighter", Asger said. "When I heard Naglfar after the chest he carried for Professor Chariot, I immediately set out to aid him before they could get their hands on it. I thought I was too late when I found him injured with the chest missing and surrounded by those bugs, only for him told me he passed it to you."
"Does that deer okay? I mean... German?", Akko asked anxiously.
The squirrel's expression become quiet as he replied, "He didn't make it."
The three young girls in the room become shocked and devastated by German's death, particularly Akko. Part of her blamed herself because she left the deer fighting alone so she and her friends can safely deliver the chest to Ursula. "But the bright side is, the chest now in the right hands", the squirrel continues. "The thing that matter now is to find those who can help stopping Naglfar from destroying the world."
"Who's Naglfar?", Sucy questioned Asger.
Asger sighed. "Naglfar is an order of wizards and witches who named their group after mythological ship made of nails of the dead of Helheim. Magic folks who worshipped Jotnar, supernatural entities who enemies with both Norse Gods and Nine Olde Witches. They believe Jotnar should have their rightful place to rule this world. They will stop at nothing, not even the death of their own members. Descendants of Nine Olde Witches' closest followers, Thapolians, supposedly have wiped every last of them in the past. But apparently, a few of them survived and went to hiding, biding their time to regain their lost strengths. They made their presence known to magic community not long after Yggdrasil restored."
"That chest", Asger said as he walked towards Akko. "Contains something that can help us fight the Naglfar. Valkyrie Armors."
"Valkyrie... Armors?" Lotte wondered.
"But they don't look like an armor", Akko argued. "I mean, they looked like plain gauntlets."
"Gauntlets? Maybe", the squirrel nodded before he stands on his rear feet and gestured Akko to give the chest to him.
Akko gives Asger the chest, and the squirrel opens it so he can reveal its contents to everyone present. "I see you girls have figured out what's inside of this chest, but you only see the half of the picture", he said. "Valkyrie Armor is magical suit of armor designed to enhance strength, defense, mobility, and magic of any witch who wear it. The armor also designed to take gauntlet form when not active, making it easier to conceal and transport. As a precaution to prevent them from being abused, Valkyrie Armors are given permanent enchantments upon their creation so only those who worthy can wield its power. Not to mention the armor also enable a witch who don it to overpower and even defeat a dragon by her own and can be used in places where magic not present."
"Whoa, that's awesome!", Akko commented.
"However, the armor can be dangerous to the user, as its powers can overwhelm her", Asger continued as he slams the chest shut. "One must never wear the armor's active form for more than two minutes. Never! If the armor stays in its active form longer than that, its magic will burn you to death."
"Two minutes?", Akko repeated.
"Yes, which is why that armor only used to face the direst of challenges", Asger nodded. "Regardless whether you intrigued by these armors' powers, it doesn't deny the fact that they also dangerous in wrong hands. So, it would be best if these armors kept hidden until I and Chariot find those who worthy for its powers. Chariot?"
The bespectacled professor nods as she takes the chest from the squirrel's hands and walked towards the empty wall in the office. With a wave of her wand, the wall parted to reveal a small hiding place. She put the chest into it and magically closed the secret compartment. She then turned on three students and implores, "Now, it's best if you three not mention this to anyone. If the news about these powerful items come out to the whole school, things would be complicated. Understand?"
Akko and her teammates nod with agreement. Suddenly, a banging noise came from the wall where Ursula hid the chest, startling everyone. Not just once, more banging noise can be heard from the secret compartment, persistent and getting louder. Ultimately, the chest bursts out of the secret compartment as if it propelled by tremendous force, and comically hits Akko on the face. The chest then landed to the floor before opens, and Valkyrie Gauntlets inside it fly to the girls' hands; Akko got the red gauntlet while Lotte and Sucy got yellow and green ones respectively. The whole events rendered Ursula and Asger speechless and incredulous.
"What in the world?!", Ursula cried out indignantly.
"Did you three touch those gauntlets?", Asger demanded.
"J-just for a second!", Akko said defensively. "We were curious why that box is so important. When I touched the red gauntlet, I felt tingling sensation on my hands."
"You do?", Lotte wondered. "I feel the same thing when I touch the yellow one."
"Same", Sucy added, waving the green gauntlet a bit.
"Tingling sensation? Great! The fate of humanity and Nine Realms now placed in the hands of young witches who not know what they up against!", the squirrel said sarcastically. " Chariot, I hate to say this, but it looks like new Valkyries we looking for are right in front of us."
Asger and Ursula turned on the now-confused three students. "V-valkyrie?", Lotte stared in confusion.
The former stage-magician removed her hat. "Valkyries are witches who trained in both martial and magical arts. In the past, witches stood alone against various evil beings who threatened their kind and humanity, but magic and arcane knowledge alone is not enough to deal more challenging adversaries. More than often, they had disadvantages should they deprived of their wands and magical equipment. To solve this problem, Thapoli, kingdom founded by closest followers of Nine Olde Witches and Beatrix Cavendish began experimenting with developing new elite warriors to face challenges that too much for normal witches to handle. The end result was Valkyries, and they proved effective during the war against Naglfar."
"Magic community had hoped to stop them like we did during the war", Asger continued. "We correctly predicted that they will return once Yggdrasil restored and were ready when they make their first move. But Naglfars surprised us- they attacked Thapoli with some kind of war machine that combines magic and steam technology. We managed to drove them away, but at the cost of our best warriors, including previous bearers of Valkyrie Armors that chose you now. They also have stolen something from the kingdom during the siege as well. I don't know what they stole nor what they planned with it, but it's clear that they must be stopped."
"Which is why German was sent to deliver those gauntlets to this school?", Lotte guessed.
"Where are Naglfars now?", Akko asked.
"Yes, and they already here, somewhere in England", Asger replied. "Given that they knew those gauntlets are in this school, they will likely attack this place as well."
"If Naglfar get their hands on Valkyrie Gauntlets you have now, it will be catastrophic", added the bespectacled French witch. "This is far worse than missile possessed by Croix's machines. I know this is more than what you signed for, but for now, we need to prepare."
"Prepare for what?", Akko asked.
"I and Asger will teach you how not to get killed, just in case", Prof. Ursula looked at the three students.
In Headmistress' Office, a meeting is held between Asger, Ursula, Diana, and Miranda Holbrooke. After proposing that they will train Akko, Lotte, and Sucy ancient ways of Valkyrie, Akko told them that she and her teammates need to think about it. With that, Ursula and Asger discussed the matter with Headmistress Holbrooke and Diana Cavendish, who also heard the news of three Valkyrie Gauntlets being sent to the school this afternoon.
"This can't go on, Headmistress Holbrooke. First, they attacked Thapoli, now those gauntlets chose three unlikely young witches who had no idea what they will face?", Asger said uneasily.
"What do you suggest Asger?", Holbrooke asked.
"Find other champions. Those who have same qualities with Miss Cavendish in this school", the squirrel pleaded.
"Worthiness enchantment given to those gauntlets is never wrong", Ursula argued. "They must have sensed something in them that made them worthy as their new wielders like Shiny Rod did to Akko. But—"
"But what?!", Asger interrupted. "We can't send those kids to their deaths just because they worthy! How about if this proved too much for them, and... it was an accident?"
"There are no accidents. I believe German sensed the same thing when he passed those gauntlets to Akko, Lotte, and Sucy so those three can bring them to Luna Nova", Holbrooke reassured. "I understand you worried because they still minors and lacked skills Miss Cavendish had."
"Well then!", Asger insisted.
"Do not underestimate my friends Asger", Diana raised her voice. "It was true Akko and I stopped the missile from destroying the neighboring country, but both of us not succeed without their help."
"I agreed with Miss Cavendish and Professor Chariot", Holbrooke nodded. "Asger, Diana, scout the area around the school in case of those Naglfars approaching this place. We can't afford to let them enter the school's premises. And Professor Chariot, discuss this matter with those three, will you?"
"It will be done, Headmistress", Diana nodded.
"I will", Professor Ursula nodded also before set out to find Akko, Lotte, and Sucy.
"This is it! I knew I'd seen what kind of creature Asger before."
Akko, Lotte, and Sucy are in the school library where they browsed more information about both Pomokai Holoholonas and Naglfar, which bring them to Norse mythology and legends that surrounding Nine Olde Witches. There, the Finnish witch stumbled upon book about Pomokai Holoholonas and excitedly showed its contents to her roommates.
"What is it, Lotte?", Akko wondered.
"A Ratatoskr", Lotte whispered dramatically. "Asger is a Ratatoskr, one of seven races of legendary magic beasts called Pomokai Holoholona, creation of Nine Olde Witches!"
"Pomo-what?", Sucy asked.
Lotte reads the article about Pomokai Holoholonas and legends that surrounding their origins to her roommates: Pomokai Holoholonas are living forms of magic created through combining magic of Yggdrasil and that of legendary serpent called Great Lindworm. Long ago, an evil being called Loki enslaved the Great Lindworm and forced the serpent to destroy the world against its will. The terror they unleashed brought the attention of Nine Olde Witches, legendary witches and founder of Luna Nova, and Heimdall, Warrior from The North. And so, they battled, a battle so great that it scarred the whole world. Having enough with Loki's hold over it, Great Lindworm turned against the destroyer demon and aided Heimdall and Nine Olde Witches striking him down. But the spiteful Loki retaliated by delivering fatal blows on both Warrior from The North and the beast in his last moments, killing them both. Sensing its pain and suffering at hands of the malevolent Loki, and aware that Great Lindworm's own inherent black magic threatened to ravage the world upon its death, Woodward utilizes power of both Shiny Rod and Yggdrasil to purify the beast, resulting magic inside it and that of the Great Tree combined into seven races of half-plant, half-animal beings that would be known as Pomokai Holoholona. It was also said that the process allowed Great Lindworm's tortured soul to reincarnate into a mortal being in Midgard so it can regain peace it lost because of Loki.
While Nine Olde Witches reputed as legendary figures among witches, this legendary feat of theirs soon fade into fairy tales, with everyone no longer remember how Pomokai Holoholonas came to being. In spite of this, Pomokai Holoholonas' own reputation which inspired both the fear and respect to these creatures gave them a central place in lore of witch civilization as beasts of legend.
"I can't believe it! We just met two of those legendary Pomokai Holoholonas this afternoon", Akko awed in disbelief.
"So do I", Lotte added. "I never know they really exist until now. I heard their community led a reclusive life somewhere at Norway with Kingdom of Thapoli being sole connection to witch community and outside world. I'm sure you guys never heard about that kingdom since they are some kind of secret nation founded by original followers of Nine Olde Witches to begin with. Thapoli severed their ties with the rest of the world except with Magic Community to protect ancient witchcrafts and other knowledge to prevent them from falling into wrong hands. The proof of that kingdom's existence were both those Pomokai Holoholonas and those gauntlets!"
While Sucy remained indifferent, Akko tried to absorb her place in this crazy revelation. She realized how little she knew about the world of magic.
Patrolling the school at night seemingly simple part of Diana's daily routine before studying for the class on the next day. This time however, she patrols alongside Asger, the emissary of Thapoli who sent to look for potential champions for Valkyrie Armors his late fellow emissary German sent to Luna Nova. With Naglfar now know the gauntlets are in Luna Nova, it's just the matter of time before they invade the school.
Headmistress Holbrooke had a special reason why she appointed Diana for this duty. It is not simply because of her reputation as prodigy in Luna Nova, but rather an important secret of hers only Holbrooke and Professor Ursula aware of- Unlike the rest of her peers, Diana is the Valkyrie apprentice who recently completed her training. Her title is Eir the Ice Sword Valkyrie. The previous bearer of this title was her mother, Bernadette Cavendish, a powerful witch and Valkyrie who had fought in numerous battles against those who threatened both humanity and witch community. She later resigned from her duty following death of her husband and her deteriorated health so she can prepare her daughter to become heir of the title. While the Ice Valkyrie associated with House of Cavendish, only bearers of this armor and trustworthy members of this family who aware with this secret: Daryl, Maryl, and Merrill remain oblivious with this, which is for the best.
After scouting for a while, the duo decided to split up in order to cover more ground. Asger goes for southern area around the school while Diana on the north. At first, nothing seems unusual as she walked through the trees at the north of main building until she heard a faint noise. Cautiously pulling out her wand, Diana quickly turned around and pointed it forward. Suddenly, a mysterious assailant swung from a nearby tree and lunges towards her, prompting her to roll out of the way. She managed to evade the mysterious figure's ambush unharmed, save for a small cut on her cheek.
"Not bad, for a young Cavendish", the stranger praised as Diana gets back on her feet.
Something on the mysterious figure tells Diana that he might not an ordinary human, especially with his glowing blue eyes. He wears a brown fur hood over his head adorned with deer skull that has runic symbols painted on the base of both of its antlers and horizontally across nose bridge area. He also wears red coat with yellow edges over a purple robe with matching edge, brown sash, and what appeared to be brown boots. The hooded stranger carries a curved runic dagger on his right hand, which point now stained with Diana's blood.
"Who are you?", Diana demanded.
"No need to ask question, Cavendish", the figure scowled. "I give you once chance to save the pathetic school of yours. Tell me the whereabouts of those gauntlets!"
Guessing that the intruder coveted the gauntlets which Luna Nova received this afternoon, Diana replied, "You know I can't do that."
The hooded figure leaps into the air, easily disarmed the young witch by knocking her wand off of her hand. With a quick turn, he proceeds to stab her on the abdomen only for something redirected it to the ground. To his surprise, Diana parried the attack with what appeared to be an ornate yellow and white throwing knife-like weapon adorned with a green orb embedded on it. But once again, the attack fails with the said weapon shattered by another blade of Diana's before the prodigy kicked him several feet away from her. Recovering from the attack, the figure surprised that the Cavendish is holding two identical weapons on both of her hands.
"You're not the only one who is dual-wielding here", Diana said confidently before connected both blades on their pommel and hold it with her left hand as she kicks her wand back to another. She then magically combined them into a pair of black and silver twin swords combined at the pommel adorned with glowing emerald lines in a flash of green light before assuming a combat stance which instantly recognized by the hooded intruder.
"That twin swords, and combat stance of yours... I should've known. You're Eir the Ice Sword Valkyrie!", the figure curses in realization before magically turned his dagger into icy long sword and attacks.
The duel soon become quick-paced, jaw-dropping fight. Magic meets martial arts as Diana and the hooded assailant mix magic bolts with tornado kick, slashes, stabs, and punches. Diana fights bravely, but her adversary doesn't tire. A savage blow knocked her sword staff into half, and a brutal kick sends her sailing. Cornering her against a nearby tree, the hooded figure raises his icy sword, ready to deliver a lethal blow to end their fight. Acting fast, Diana raises her twin swords in defensive position. Suddenly, seconds before their weapons clashed, a powerful magic bolt knocks the hooded intruder's icy sword off of his hand before having another bolt sending him flying. Diana turns around, and sees Asger with his body emanates with green energy surge
"Are you okay, Cavendish?", the squirrel-like Pomokai Holoholona asked calmly.
Diana simply nods as the squirrel jumped to her side. Dismayed by unexpected arrival of a squirrel-like Pomokai Holoholona, the hooded figure returned to his feet and curses, "Well, if it isn't one of wretched Nine Olde Witches' creation. I don't have time to deal both pest and Valkyrie at once, so I'll finish this quickly with some pets of mine!"
The figure pulled out what appeared to be a blowing horn from his coat before blows it, letting out a loud humming noise which echo throughout the woods. A second later, the loud horn is replied by loud hisses and flapping noises from all over the woods. The hooded figure smirks as four-winged insectoid monster jump out from the hiding and converges to his side. With a snap of his fingers, the beasts explode into mass of flesh and tendrils that combine into a single, two-headed, giant version of individual creature with its centipede-like lower half morphs into segmented tail ends with tripartite claws.
"Now, let us match the combined power of Naglfar's greatest beasts of war and magic of Niflheim against Ice Valkyrie and the best weapon Nine Olde Witches bestowed to her!", the figure challenges before merged with the beast waist down on its thorax.
Cold sweat runs through Diana's face. There's no way she can deal that thing even with Asger on her side.
A loud roar echoed throughout the woods and made its way to Luna Nova, startling every single inhabitant in the school. This includes Akko, Lotte, and Sucy who still in the library.
"What was that?", Akko wondered.
"I don't know, but I have a good feeling about this", Sucy said with her toothy grin.
Another roar echoes throughout the woods. Curious, Lotte peers to a nearby window, and her face instantly become pale as she starts to back away.
"Lotte, what is it?", Akko wondered.
Suddenly something comes crashing in one of windows not far from the three friends, knocking over one of bookshelves and spilled its contents to the floor. This followed by Mega Apollyon who claws its way into the library and roars at everyone present.
A split seconds later, everyone, except Sucy of course, is yelling. As everyone evacuate the library, Lotte pulls Sucy out of the room with Akko follow her friends from behind. But then, she stopped in her tracks upon noticing Diana and Asger emerge from the rubble that used to be a bookshelf, with the two-headed beast, controlled by evil sorcerer who merged with it, enters the library.
"What's so special about Ice Valkyrie?!", the hooded figure insulted Diana. "I heard rumors about her being House of Cavendish's greatest champion and even fought some myself, but it seems you're not looked like what they used to be. How incredibly disappointing."
Ice Valkyrie?, Akko thought. She knows Diana is a prodigy from famous House of Cavendish, but Ice Valkyrie? What does it mean?
Asger gets back on his feet to face the evil sorcerer, but the squirrel suddenly fell into his knees, weakened by injuries all over his body. To make matter worse, the squirrel-like creature coughs up green sap-like liquid. There's no way he can survive another blow from that monster. The sight of him dying in front of her reminds Akko to German, the deer-like Pomokai Holoholona she met this afternoon, and the fact that Diana also injured on his side not helpful either. Unable to let the monster deliver deathblows on both her friend and the Pomokai Holoholona, Akko, without thinking twice, pulled out her broom from her magical bag just as the sorcerer, with his Mega Apollyon's front claws ready to strike his weakened foes, exclaimed, "You both finished now!"
A second before the monster's claws reach both Diana and Asger, something fast snatched them at very last moments and carried them off to the woods. To Diana and Asger's surprise, their savior is none other than Akko, who flying with her broom.
"Akko?!", Diana shouted incredulously.
"Hold on tight, you two!", Akko cried to Diana and Asger, unaware that they fly straight to a large tree.
"Akko, watch out for tha—", Diana warned seconds before they hit the tree with a loud thump.
After a beat, Akko, Diana, and Asger fall off, with the unimpressed hooded sorcerer and his Mega Apollyon hot in pursuit. Unfortunately for him, he failed to notice Ursula who dashed towards him all while simultaneously chanting out "Vega Valurus!", delivering a magically enhanced kick that sending him and his two-headed beast sailing. As this happens, Asger grabbed both young witches before releases a jet of gas and magic from hollowed protrusions on his back to slow their fall and gently put them down to the ground.
"What on earth you think you doing, Akko?", Ursula said to her student as she and Diana return to their feet. "You can't risk your life like that just because you can fly!"
"What choice do I have?", Akko argued. "I can't just stand there and see that monster tear them apart!"
"This is not your fight, Akko. You supposedly not int-", Asger reprimanded before interrupted by a loud roar- the sorcerer and his Mega Apollyon have recovered from Ursula's attack earlier, angrier than ever.
A spinning ball of magic formed in front of one of the monster's maw before released on the three witches and squirrel-like Pomokai Holoholona, forcing them to scatter before the ball splashed into destructive explosion upon impact. The blast sends Akko flying against a nearby tree, cornering her and damaged her left sleeve, revealing her red Valkyrie Gauntlet beneath in process. Outraged that one of gauntlets he after has chosen a witch, the sorcerer shouts, "That gauntlet belongs to us!", before having his two-headed monster close in towards the girl. Ursula and Diana rushed in to save Akko, but the sorcerer simply has his Mega Apollyon sending them sailing with a swipe of its tail.
"Diana! Professor Ursula!", Akko cried out in horror.
Fortunately, just as the monster about to reach the terrified Akko, Asger snatched the brunette away with his remaining strengths. Just then, he and Akko notice the gauntlet emanates red astral glow. Realizing that he had no choice and he also owed Akko his and Diana's life, Asger decided to return the favor. So, he instructed Akko, "I can't believe I asked you to do this, but Akko, you must don your Valkyrie Armor now!"
"How do I do that, Asger?", Akko asked back. "You didn't tell me anything about it."
"All you need to do is to recite the incantation and run your hand on that gauntlet at the same time", Asger replied. "The incantation is Venta Herkleda."
"Venta Herk-uh...", Akko tentatively repeated before Asger corrected her as the sorcerer and Mega Apollyon close in to them, "Venta Herkleda! Now speak the incantation!"
"Venta Herkleda!", Akko chants out correctly while simultaneously run her hand against the gauntlet in one quick swipe. To her surprise, the friction between her hand and the gauntlet produces sparks that swirling above her head into a large ring of green light. A second later, the ring turns into a magic circle from which surge of green energy and red armor plates wrapped themselves around her body into suit of armor in a flash. As this happens, Sucy and Lotte, who realized their roommate not following them, returned to the ruined library in time to see this event.
Awesome. That is the only way to describe red and white armor that materialized around Akko. Basically, it resembles white-colored version of her Luna Nova practice uniform which consist of boots, tunic, and a witch hat worn over black bodysuit with red armor plating. However, the hat has a red oval emblem with yellow outline and golden four-pointed star in the middle above red ribbon and a pair of red wing-like ornaments attached on the sides. Not only that, she gains an ornate helmet, breastplate with a small yellow orb embedded on the upper front with matching shoulder plates, twin retractable red ribbons attached to the back ends with a ring with 3 barbs resembling Luna Nova insignia, armor plates attached on the sleeves and sides of the tunic with tassets on the hip area held together by red ribbon, and greaves attached on the boots with a pair of ornate metal wings attached on the sides of the ankles. Akko's transformation ends with cicruit-like markings on wing ornaments, sides of the helmet, breastplate, shoulder plates, tassets, greaves, and edges of the tunic's bottom and sleeves that glow in bright green accent.
Diana and Ursula, who just return to their feet, looked in awe. So does Lotte and Sucy, but the sorcerer on the other hand, not impressed. He had his Mega Apollyon rushed to the brunette with its claws ready to tear her apart. To Akko's surprise, as she attempts to evade the monster's furious claw assaults, she suddenly feels herself gaining an immense amount of speed. It looks as if time become slower than normal. The Mega Apollyon then shoves its clawed tail onto the armored brunette, but luckily for Akko, she discovered the armor also enhanced her strength that she easily caught it and throw the beast aside with little effort, all of which without even staggered by the force of the beast's attack.
"So this... is Valkyrie Armor's powers?", Akko bewildered with what just happened.
Frustrated, the sorcerer had his two-headed beast firing its magic bolts against Akko in rapid succession, but Akko easily evade them all. The taste of her newfound powers endowed by the armor gives the brunette a sense of excitement. Even so, Akko realized that she can only don the armor for less than two minutes, so she must defeat the sorcerer and his monster fast before taking it off somehow. Pulling out her wand, Akko attempts to cast a spell on the beast, but the hooded sorcerer conjures a salvo of ice shards where one of them knocked it off of her hand.
"My wand!", Akko cried, distracting her long enough for Mega Apollyon to send her sailing with its tail.
"You may have Valkyries' powers, but you lacked their strength or skills", sneered the sorcerer. "You still weak. Once this all over, I shall drink from a goblet made of your skull!!"
"This is bad. Akko won't stand a chance at this rate", Ursula said anxiously before noticing her student's wand not far from her. However, Akko need more than that to defeat their adversary. So, the bespectacled French grabbed the wand and magically combined it with a spearhead-like blade of hers similar to Diana's, turning it into a longer, ornate magical dagger. She then passed the transformed weapon to Diana while cried out, "Diana, Akko need this!"
The Cavendish caught the dagger before rushed towards Akko's side just as she dodged another of Mega Apollyon's magic blasts and passed it to her, "Here, catch!"
Catching the magical dagger, Akko feels unsure whether she can use it against the two-headed insectoid beast. "Diana, how do I fight him with this?", she asked.
"Cavendish scum!", the sorcerer bellowed as he fires a salvo of ice shards against Diana, prompting the prodigy to deflect oncoming projectiles with a magic barrier. She then returns fire by firing magic bolts from her twin swords onto Mega Apollyon's eyes, blinding the beast and forced the sorcerer to control the beast's body himself to combat Diana.
"It's not an ordinary dagger, Akko! You can change it into any weapon you wanted!", Ursula cried out. "Just visualize the weapon you wanted that blade to be and focus."
"Try to change it into a magic bow, kid!", Asger added. "Miss Cavendish cannot keep him busy any longer."
"Visualize?", Akko repeated. "I can change this dagger into other weapon or something?"
The mention of magic bow reminds the armored young witch to moments she transmogrified Shiny Rod into magical bow called Shiny Bow to combat Noir Dragon months ago. If what they said about the magical dagger's metamorphic ability is true, it means she can recreate Shiny Bow somehow with it. Even so, the result might be pale compared to original Shiny Bow as Shiny Rod is one of a kind magic tool. But nevertheless, she decided to give it a try.
Visualizing Shiny Rod's bow form in her mind, Akko focused her will on the magical dagger. To her pleasant surprise, it magically transforms into a long bow that bears slight resemblance to Shiny Bow. This bow however, has black and gray coloration as opposed of beige and yellow, and possesses glowing emerald lines instead of orbs found in original Shiny Bow. With no time to lose, Akko pulled the magic bow's string and creates a fiery vermilion arrow ready to fire on the two-headed insectoid beast. As she did, green glows of her armor shines brighter.
"Now, Diana! Now!", Ursula yelled.
Diana jumped out of the way, giving Akko a clear shot to fire the magic arrow on Mega Apollyon. Setting the arrow loose, it successfully struck the beast right between its twin heads. For a moment, the insectoid monster behaves erratically as the arrow's magic begins to take effect. Then suddenly, the arrow triggers a fiery chain reaction where its magic burns the beast inside out, forcing the hooded sorcerer to detach himself from his beast seconds before it eventually covered by glowing cracks and bursts into firework-like explosions. The explosion sends the sorcerer sailing and lands on his face, seemingly knocked him into submission.
"I did it... ", that's all Akko could said before realized she might wearinh her Valkyrie Armor for too long. "G-guys! Does anyone know how long I wear this?"
"Calm down, kid!", Asger said to her. "Show me the gauntlet, Akko."
Without a word, Akko pulled her left sleeve to see the gauntlet blinks erratically. "Looks like you only have few seconds left. But not too worry, I know how to deal this", Asger reassures before punches the gauntlet's emblem.
With a loud clank, Akko's clothes return to normal with a burst of fiery green magic all over her body. Simultaneously, a magic circle opens above the young witch's head as every single one of her armor plates disengage and sucked into it before disappears. Once the circle disappears, Asger said to Akko, "Akko, it was good thing you paid the attention about the armor's time limit, but it doesn't deny the fact that you did a reckless and stupid thing back then."
"What he said is true", Diana added. "But if you weren't there, neither of us make it in that fight. So you have our thanks."
Just then, Sucy and Lotte enter the scene with Lotte asked, "What was that, Akko? That armor, and the arrow. I mean... what did you just do?"
"Asger helped Akko don her Valkyrie Armor for the first time. I never thought she can successfully summon it and fight that monster in spite of her lack of training", Diana explained.
"That's right", Akko added, before recalled on something. "Oh yeah! Diana, why did that sorcerer call you Ice Sword Eir? Maybe you-"
"Hey, where's that bastard go?", Asger interrupted all of sudden.
Akko, Lotte, Sucy, Diana, and Ursula turn, surprised that the sorcerer had disappeared.
"He's gone!", Akko exclaimed.
"For now", Ursula nodded. "He'd after the armor. But with Valkyrie Gauntlets have chosen their champions, he and the rest of the Naglfar won't stay quiet."
"That crook was in league with Naglfar?", Akko wondered.
"Yes. He is one of them", Asger nodded. "Elder Erik, one of Naglfar's notorious wizards. It was fortunate he didn't display the full extent of his powers. Luna Nova and those gauntlets of yours safe for now, but I'll contact my people to send more back up to guard this school, including her."
"Who's her?", Sucy asked.
"An old associate of Chariot's. White Valkyrie", Asger replied before look on Akko, Lotte, and Sucy. "Before we can stop Naglfar, we must first turn you three into Valkyries by begin your."
"Basic training?", Lotte repeated.
"Yes", Asger nodded. "I actually never wanted you three to involve in all of this, but now with those gauntlets chose you, we can use your help."
Meanwhile, Diana turns on the woods, and see the sorcerer, Old Erik, among the trees. The prodigy and Naglfar sorcerer exchanges a stare, then a nod before the latter make his leave. They both know this is just the beginning...
While I intended that this story has more magical girl elements in it (considering such elements are rare in canon, only in the final episode and The Enchanted Parade movie), I wanted to make something more original compared to all generic stuff we all see in generic magical girl series; generic transformation sequence (the heroine has her civilian outfit magically disappear into bright light and replaced with her magical girl costume in its place at which the process completed with her accessory materialized last), fancy-looking magical girl costume that may provide little protection, and somewhat fancy-looking attacks and finishers.
Those are fine, but I am more interested with new stuff that stands out from your usual magical girls fare.
For the take of magical girl elements in this story, I drew inspirations from already existing magical girl series as well as other series with tokusatsu elements such as Kill la Kill, Yuki Yuna is a Hero, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, GARO series, Tron series, and Dragon Booster. However, I greatly credited GARO series as the primary inspiration, as it featured the titular Makai Knight who stands out from other tokusatsu heroes; instead of relying on his armored form to defeat the enemies, Garo the Golden Knight already badass enough to take down monsters that he only transform if his foes become much challenging. Not only that, the Knight's transformation sequence is much simple: He only need to concentrate as he pointed his Makai Blade upwards before drawing a circle with it, creating a portal from which his Makai Armor appears and wrap itself around him in matter of seconds. The reason why he only assume his armored form sparingly is due to inherently dangerous properties of magical alloy the armor made of, so much that he can only wear it before the time limit 99.9 seconds elapsed. I also credited Kill la Kill and Yuki Yuna is a Hero as another inspiration since they more badass and stands out from other magical girl series.
Why with Norse mythology? One, is Yggdrasil, the cosmic tree which established as the source of magic energy utilized by witches in LWA series. Ursula stated that the tree keep the stars and planets in place. Then there's Fafnir the Dragon, the grumpy loan shark who failed in tricking Luna Nova to pay more than they owed him. Plus, Norse mythology is freakin' awesome that it become template for lore of Asgardians in Marvel comics (and in greater extent, Marvel Cinematic Universe series) as well as Magnus Chase book series. In their respective myths, Yggdrasil is the cosmic tree that connected Midgard (Earth) with the rest of Nine Realms; Svarftalfheim, Asgard, Vanaheim, Jotunheim, Alfheim, Niflheim, Helheim, and Muspelheim, whereas Fafnir is originally a dwarf who cursed into dragon for his greed, which drove him to take Andvari's ring and gold for himself. Should the canon also established that Yggdrasil connected Earth with other realms in the universe, those eight realms would likely the most well-known, and Fafnir might really named after the cursed dwarf or something. I also cited real-time Norse strategy game Northgard as my inspiration for the story as well.
By the end of second cour of the anime, Akko finally able to fly, as her magic more or less recovered enough for such feat after exposure to Dream Fuel Spirit, and magic in the world finally restored. While it is a good thing and witches finally found their place in modern world. But the restoration of magic also allow magic-related threats to return. Knowing Akko, there's no way she stay quiet and watch as some evil forces about to exploit the abundance of magic for more sinister purpose, especially from her sad experience with Croix. While in this story Akko has matured a bit, it doesn't stop her from being bubbly and impulsive. Fortunately, she has her friends and Ursula around (and importantly, Diana) and has the ability to transform into Valkyrie-themed magical knights for fighting evil. I chose Valkyrie theme to further emphasize Norse mythology in my story.
This might sounds an outright headcanon, but for this story, Ursula/Chariot often referred by others (including Akko) as Ursula and doesn't mind that way, leaving it ambiguous whether she revealed herself as Chariot to the whole school. In either way, she continued her life as Luna Nova teacher as per Akko's request from events in episode 24 of the anime and no longer hiding her hair's true color as we know it. Therefore, I'll be referring to Ursula/Chariot as just Ursula in the narrative, though some characters (particularly OCs who knows her including Asger) would addressed her as Chariot instead.
Though confused at first, I like the transformation sequence of Makai Knights in GARO series, which become basis for the transformation sequence of Akko and co. as they assumed their armored forms as Valkyries.
Even though I stick with the canon for many elements in the story (magic, character backgrounds, etc.), there would be some derailings, as this story technically takes place in an alternate universe which history mostly same with canon universe of LWA anime TV series albeit with some differences: As you are found, in the universe where this story take place, Nine Olde Witches revealed to have history with the Gods of Asgard and even involved in "The Great War" or Ragnarök, at which they ensured humanity's survival over the course of that apocalyptic event and even aiding them rebuiling the world in the aftermath of the war between the Gods of Asgard and Jötnar. For the name of the universe where this story takes place, it is called Midgard.
All comments and feedbacks are greatly appreciated!