Fate/Zero: Episode 18

Interestingly enough, we have an episode (two if one counts the next episode as one as well) about Emiya Kiritsugu’s life before he was the man whom we all have seen since Fate/stay night and more so at Fate/Zero. Kiritsugu’s cold and condescending attitude can be traced back when he was just a child at a remote island that few settle on. Here, Kiritsugu was just like any other child, someone who wished to have fun with everyone else, spending most of his days basking in the warm sunlight and playing with his friends. It took a while for him to get along with everyone, however, since he was new to the island, and people were fearful of his father due to his mage identity. Yet, it was Shirley, a teenage girl whom he befriended, that allowed him to he the cheerful boy that he was back then.

Not only was Shirley kind to him, but she was very supportive of his father’s work, going so far as to become his father’s assistant. Daily, she would help him out with his experiments on eternal youth as he mostly tested his findings on plants. Even Shirley would try to mimic his experiments and come up with her own undying flower and finally succeeded in doing so, much to her and Kiritsugu’s joy. Warms days such as this can only go on for so long as she would eventually have to go to church to explain her actions to the priest, who sees Kiritsugu’s father in a bad light, which makes sense because magic and religion are very iffy with each other. Although Shirley tries to defend his father, it would not be enough to sway him. Even after the priest’s long lecture, Shirley still believes that Kiritsugu’s father  is a wonderful person and would one day change the world for the better.

Shirley drops him back home, but both saw that the flower that she has thought was able to bloom forever quickly withered away. Shirley states that, in the end, she is still only an assistant. There is no way someone like her with no affinity with magic can pick up the research that Kiritsugu’s father was working on. Instead, Shirley wishes for Kiritsugu to be the one who will become his hair and take part from where he left off. She thinks he can do it. Shirley brings Kiritsugu to a river with a beautiful refection of the sky. Shirley wants Kiritsugu to grow up to be a find adult and wants him to protect and save the world, much like how his father may be able to do in the future, but Shirley asks what type of man does he want to be once he obtains his father’s information. While Kiritsugu states that it will be a secret, Shirley states that, until he figures out what he will do with his power when he is an adult, she will stay by his side until the end. We see Kiritsugu blushing, hinting that he may actually have some interest with Shirley, despite his young age.

The next day, Kiritsugu’s father tells him not to leave the house for today, with confuses him. It was sunset, and nothing seems to be happening, so Kiritsugu decides to leave and check up on Shirley, who has not come to his place since morning when she usually does. Kiritsugu searches the entire village, but no one has seen her as of late. Kiritsugu enters her house and finds an empty bottle of the drug his father was experimenting, much to his shock. He goes to the backyard, only to see her eating a live chicken bare-handed. With her eyes, one can tell that she was the one who drank the potion. Frightened to see Kiritsugu, she runs inside a hen den and forces herself to stay inside. She does not wish to hurt Kiritsugu and is afraid of what she may do if she loses control over herself. She throws the dagger talisman that the priest gave her yesterday to Kiritsugu, asking him to kill her before she loses her sanity. But, Kiritsugu cannot do that. There is no way he could kill someone, let alone someone whom he was interested him. Frightened by the dilemma of choosing what to, Kiritsugu takes dagger and runs back home.

Kiritsugu was emotionally down for leaving the one whom he loves alone in such a poor state. In his lament, his father tells him to stay inside while he goes to the village. Outside, however, there were people killing other people. Someone intruded into their house. It was about to break into Kiritsugu’s room until a member of the church kills it in front of his eyes. Before the church member was able to go in, more of it appeared before them, to which the church members quickly took easy work on. Because it was not safe to be at his home, Kiritsugu decides to check the village, but it was turn ablaze by the mages who were killing more of its that were roaming in the village. Kiritsugu was scared. Was it his fault that it came like this? Because he did not kill Shirley, did he cause the entire village to become one of them. Surrounded by them and not knowing what to do, a stranger appears out of nowhere and shoots them down. After killing them she leaves, with Kiritsugu having no choice but to follow her out of he wanted to stay alive.

Kiritsugu was still confused as to what was going on. The woman explains that this was the work of a vampire, those who suck people’s blood to reproduce, more commonly known as Dead Apostles. The people at his house were known as the Church association, those who kill any Dead Apostle on sight, even those who are suspected to have the blood of one. The people who were burning the village and them were the Mage Association, those who destroy any evidence of anything related to magic from the public and kill those who know of their secret. She, Kamiński Natalia states that she is a mercenary for the Mage association, but not a part of it. She asks if Kiritsugu knew anything about the mage responsible for this. The mage should be the one who used one of the villagers as medium for what he was seeing right now, thus the one responsible for this mess. Of course, only one person popped in his mind.

Kiritsugu meets up with his father, who was burning his research since it was a failure. Kiritsugu asked why he was researching on Dead Apostles for Shirley had become one. His father seemed not to care about what was going on, only paying attention to his own research, even going as far as thanking Shirley for taking his medicine by accident, since it would mean that he would be going at a failed experiment forever. His father told him that they would need to run away, but Kiritsugu did not think so. In a split second, using the dagger given by Shirley, he stabs his father and, taking a pistol from an open cabinet, shoots him until he dies.

But, what did it accomplish? Was it for revenge for what he has done to Shirley, or was it for his own personal reason that, if he did run away with this monster of a father, he would have continued his research elsewhere, created more Dead Apostles, and eventually use him in a worse-case scenario? I think it was here than he coined his model of killing one in order to save the world. Natalia enters the house with ease and tells him that she will take him to the boat stationed that his father mentioned and send him to wherever he wanted to go. He asked him if he wanted to bring anything with him, to which he stated nothing. While it may be that he would not have much since he lives in a village at a home by himself and his father at a young age, I think this statement is very significant. In a sense, Kiritsugu practically lost everything that he thought he had. His father, whom he seen as an enemy who just wanted to see his Origin by any means necessary, killed by his hands. Shirley, the girl whom he loves, turns into one of them. Due to his own indecisiveness, the village suffered the same fate as Shirley. There was nothing for him to bring with him at that point; he had lost everything that he once deemed precious. He had nothing because he lost everything.

In the end, he decides to become Natalia’s apprentice, and the next episode should discuss his life as her apprentice.

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