Premonition - A Fated Rematch
Lucina was anxious. She admitted as much to herself. Giddy with excitement as well, but nervous nonetheless for the upcoming reunion.
“Representing Khan Flavia as Eastern Champion is Prince Chrom Lowell of Ylisse!”
It had been months since Lucina had seen her father’s younger self, and that had been a passing thing full of lies. In hindsight, she really had no reason to be so secretive with him. Nothing she did could cause a paradox. She hadn’t expected to even have a chance to be born again, so giving her true name presented no problems. If she and her friends had been given more time to plan before leaping through time, maybe she would have acted differently.
Across the arena, Lucina took stock of the early Shepherds standing alongside her father. They all looked so young and inexperienced. The weight of war after war had not yet settled upon their shoulders. The stark absence of Robin beside Chrom sent a brief wave of guilt through Lucina, but she banished the feeling. She’d not made peace with her actions, not truly, but dwelling on them served no purpose.
Still, Lucina had to wonder who her father would fall in love with in this timeline. Maybe things would change less than she expected. Naga had said that time preferred to flow unaltered, but the timeline already felt, well, completely thrown out the window. No major events had yet changed, but today would be the first.
After the crowd had quieted and the appropriate boasts had been made, the master of ceremonies turned to the western gate that Lucina stood behind. The men operating it took that as their cue to raise it for her entrance.
Lucina gave herself one last look over. Falchion hung at her belt. Her Fire Emblem was properly affixed to her upper left arm. Her hair was tied up and in no danger of falling loose or into her eyes. The straps of her armor were all suitably tightened. Yes, she was ready.
“Representing Khan Basilio as Western Champion is Lady Lucina Lowell of Plegia!”
A frown briefly marred Lucina’s face. Technically, she wasn’t even a princess in this timeline, let alone the Exalt, but the disregard for her birthright still rankled. At least she had her Plegian heritage to fall back on, pale reflection though it was. No one would contest that but Validar, if Grima had told him who she was, and perhaps Gangrel, but she would drive Falchion through either man’s heart before he got even a single word out.
As Lucina stepped into the arena, she watched her father’s reaction carefully. There was curiosity there at first mixed with a healthy dose of anger, and that was to be expected. He was here to secure military assistance against Plegia, after all, not to mention the obvious other matter.
But then Chrom’s gaze fell onto the Fire Emblem upon Lucina’s arm, and his face settled into shock.
“Oh, hello again!” Lissa called out. Apparently, she recognised Lucina from her rescue all those months ago even without the mask. “Is Robin with you?”
Lucina hesitated to answer. Lissa seemed…remarkably at ease with this situation. That was a thought to consider later.
“She’ll not be joining us for this fight.”
Lissa pouted but said nothing more on the subject. Instead, Vaike called out, “Hey! Where’s your back up? You don’t think you can–”
Chrom thrust a hand out to silence Vaike. He narrowed his eyes and asked, “How did you get ahold of the Fire Emblem?”
“My mother won it off Naga in a card game.” Lucina struggled to hide her smile at the reaction that pulled from her father.
After recovering, Chrom said, “You must know I don’t believe you.”
Lucina shrugged. “If you choose to believe I stole it, that’s your problem. Regardless–” She drew Falchion and smirked. “–nothing says a divine artifact cannot be forged more than once.” A true statement, although a misleading one.
“That sword! It can’t be…”
“Draw your blade, Your Highness,” Lucina said. She had best get this started before she indulged in too many of her mother’s bad habits.
“Milord,” Frederick said. Not too long ago, his words would have been too quiet for Lucina to pick up on, but that was before she’d completed the Awakening Rite. Being a demigoddess had more than a few advantages. “We can question her extensively after our match.”
Vaike spoke much louder. “Yeah, Chrom! This girl won’t be able to refuse after she gets Vaiked.”
Lissa snickered at Vaike’s use of his own name as a verb, and the laughter set off more than one other Shepherd.
“Very well,” Chrom relented. He turned his attention back to Lucina. “Vaike did bring up a fair point. It would be dishonorable for us to fight you without your allies and might bring the legitimacy of our bout into question.”
“Allies?” Lucina casually said. Taunting and arrogance were beneath her, but for the first time in years, she’d been having fun. It was an unexpected perk of her trip through time. If she accomplished nothing else, she’d at least learned to laugh again.
“Yes,” Chrom said. “We will wait for them to arrive.”
Chuckling, Lucina considered her options. She had been encouraged to show off. She might as well indulge a little before meeting her father in a fair test of skill. The thought felt almost foreign in her mind, but she embraced it and the power surging through her entire being nonetheless. When she’d first come back in time, she never would have done this. But then she’d been so very different back then…