The best hidden yet most informative book series in the Kiseki series to date: Black History. Only obtainable during a second or later playthroughs of Sen no Kiseki II, the book series chronicles major events of Erebonia and apparently reveals more than the imperial authorities would like you to know. A translation.
Black History 1: The Birth of the Giants
Before Septian Era.
In the beginning, there existed two Giants.
One bearer of the power of violence (take),
The other bearing the power of resilience (tsuyo).
Together with their underlings, they descended from the heavens (sara)–
And unexpectedly met each other at that dark earth.
With the natures (saga) of both Giants in conflict–
The earth shook as they battled on.
Lamentation of the goddess and spirits were in vain,
The earth trembling, tearing the heavens apart–
Their followers shaking in fear.
At the end of a fight lasting more than a thousand days–
The two Giants simultaneously hit one another on the final day.
Their vessels had been robbed from all power,
And were knocked down to the dark earth,
Their abandoned followers, tragical scars onto the earth,
— And “enormous strength” left behind.
Black History 2: The Dark Dragon of the Ruined City
The capital of Heimdallr had been founded for 200 years — when “that disaster” (sono saiyaku) suddenly emerged from the abyss of the earth. The “Dark Dragon” Zoro Agruga. A fearsome dragon spreading black miasma wherever it went. Its miasma enveloped the capital city as a whole, turning Heimdallr into the city of death. The dead were desecrated, manipulated by the dragon into wandering about and attacking the living to steadily increase its supporters.
Emperor Astorius II and his people escaped from Heimdallr to the grounds of the southern Saint Ark, which had been prepared for emergency situations. A century had passed when Emperor Hector I, seven generations later, declared to recapture the ruined city of Heimdallr. In the meanwhile, the outskirts of Heimdallr had been engulfed in magic and was under control of the Dark Dragon. Hector I spearheaded and prepared the brave Grals Ritter, but was halted by a group of powerful magical beings and forced into a difficult fight.
In the midst of the action, Hector I ran into “that being” (aru sonzai). The Crimson Knight — “Testa Rossa”. The Crimson Knight accepted Hector as its master and together they pushed on into the ruined city, wielding enormous strength and innumerous weapons, where he confronted the cause of all, the Dark Dragon. And after a fierce fight, the Crimson Knight finally slaughtered the Dark Dragon.
However, they had an enormous price to pay — because of the Dark Dragon’s blood was cursed, the Emperor lost his life and casted a curse on the Crimson Knight. “The thousand weapon wielding magus (majin)” — If it would react to someone of the imperial lineage and go on a rampage, it might expose everything above ground level to the “disaster of deep crimson” (shinku no saiyaku). In the end, “it” (sore) was sealed away in a deep underground area below the capital where the daylight would never reach.
To mask what was left of the ruined city, the new city was built atop of it and the people slowly returned again. It became the city we now know as the “Crimson Capital” — Heimdallr.
Black History 3: Outbreak of the Lion War
In the year 947 S.E., the death of Emperor Varius V marked the start of the biggest “civil war” (nairan) in the history of the empire. Varius V was known as a ladies’ man and it was said he was accompanied by numerous princesses and concubines. However, these princess came from various noble families throughout the empire and were clearly opposed to the hegemony of the empire. And — in the days following the emperor’s’ death prince Manfred, the son of the true princess, was assassinated by someone unknown.
The fourth imperial prince Orthrus, son of the second princess, seized Heimdallr through military power — in addition to completely controlling the opposing faction, he also declared himself Emperor and ascended the throne. In return, three other sons of another mother supported the noble family of their mother’s side and also declared their ascension to the throne. This led to the outbreak of the “Lion War”, where blood was spilt for five years.
— At first, the military strength of all the political factions were challenged. The faction of Prince Orthrus, henceforth known as the “Phony Emperor”, succeeded in reviving “that certain being” (aru sonzai) that had been sealed away within Heimdallr. The Crimson Knight — “Testa Rossa”, cursed by the blood of the dragon it had slain so triumphantly. The faction of Orthrus, now in the possession of the existence that was known as “The thousand weapon wielding magus”, exerted its overwhelming power to crush the military forces of Gunnar, the fifth prince, known for its unparalleled strength–
It was believed he would crush the remaining military forces in a similar way, but then there was movement within the military camp of the sixth and youngest prince, Lucius. A new “enormous Knight” — “The Palatinate Knight” was added to his force. With this power, prince Lucius annihilated the military force of Albert, the second prince known as the tactician, and obtained the military might to oppose Orthrus’ forces. However, the once defeated prince Gunnar and prince Albert had now joined forces to fight back.
With two factions possessing supernatural powers and a third one the largest army ever assembled, the war has transitioned into a three-way war (mitsudomoe). In the midst of the intensification and turmoil of the “Lion War,” which had been going on for 2 years at this point, the empire was at the verge of living up to its name of Erebos (written with the kanji for darkness).
Black History 4: Dreichels’ Army
A young man is taking a nap at a serene plain. Around him, sheep are grazing grass while they leisurely enjoy the breeze. With a grim expression on his face, another young man jumps off his horse. If you look closely, you can see his bodily is severely wounded by swords and arrows, his left arm wrapped in bandage. They meet each other for the first time in several years, though neither have yearned for this.
“It’s just like you said.”
“At this rate, the empire will be done for…”
The young man sat up straight. He is the third prince, Dreichels Reise Arnor, who rather lived as a vagrant. As Dreichels was born as an illegitimate child, he was ostracised by the other throne successors, he moved around from place to place. And since three years, he had been living in the far-away land of the Nord.
A great man by nature, he opened his heart and lived a carefree existence. However, he had not forgotten everything. During his wandering, his mother passed away. He clearly remembered his mother’s persuasive words: “The empire will never overlook your blood”. As the prince who had been alone ever since his childhood, he asked it himself for years. He wondered what power he had as a vagrant.
The word spread quickly, that the civil war was intensifying and that the empire was on the road to downfall. His mother was probably right. When he decides he can no longer ignore the situation, he decides to leave for the empire — Dreichels prepares his departure from the Nord. Before his departure from the Nord, Dreichels entrusted his close childhood friend Roland, the knight who had come to inform him, with confidential information and informed him that he would drop by the village first.
There he met with the tall warriors of Nord, all armed with cross spears. They were the only ones he could his relationship with as close, as they expressed their worries and decided to join him. On the next morning, the men were seen off at the outskirts of the village. The prince announced his departure to the villagers, the village elder blessing him in return. “Guided by the goddess and the wind we go”. Autumn 949 S.E., Dreichels’ army from the Nord took up arms — all 17 warriors.
Black History 5: End of the Lion’s War
In July, 952 S.E., the civil war known as the “Lion War” finally came to a conclusion. The powerful Knights known as “Crimson” and “Palatinate” are in the possession of the faction of the fourth prince, Orthrus, and the sixth prince, Lucius, respectively. Their opponents, the joined faction of the fifth prince Gunnar and second prince Albert, have gain access to Golems animated through the means of “magic” — in the middle of the civil war, the faction of the third prince and illegitimate child Dreichels, had risen.
Prince Dreichels, who raised his army in the Nord, lost his trusted friend Roland during the war, which led to a sudden encounter with someone that would change his destiny: the daughter of Sandlot, nobility of the lakeshore town of Legram. With divine spear skills, she was the war maiden who led the “Eisenritter (tekkitai)” for which she assembled mighty war heroes with her overwhelming charisma. That was “The Spear Saint” — Rianne Sandlot.
A vagrant prince and patriotistic saint — despite their widely different backgrounds, they both worried about the people who saw their nation burning to ashes and sought to end this war through sheer willpower. And just as they met on the battlefield, they pushed forth on the battlefield together. With the “Eisenritter” and the chivalry of the Nord, and with the sympathy of the people they met, the prince and the saint moved on to liberate place after place —
In the end the owner of the “Palatinate Knight” had a change of heart and were they another step closer to ending the war.
However, at the same time, “Phony Emperor” Orthrus had pushed his cursed Crimson Knight — “The thousand weapon wielding magus” to its absolute limits, resulting in its sublimation. “End of Vermillion (akaki shuuen no maou)” — the “Demon God” who appeared alongside the enormous Demon Castle in Heimdallr annihilated the military forces of Gunnar and Albert in a single blow — no, perhaps “erase (shoumetsu)” is a better word.
And the Demon God crushed the Palatinate Knight — infinite crimson coloured souls, radiating in the centre of the Demon Castle, rob inhabitants of the capital of their vitality. Prince Dreichels and The Spear Saint are driven into a corner — Still, they could not give up. According to the instructions of a “good witch (yoki majo)” who had been cooperating with the two, they might run into a new enormous Knight in the outskirts of the capital — their trial ended when they obtained the power of the “Ash-Coloured Knight”.
The Eisenritter and chivalry of the Nord, cooperating with forced of places they liberated and the military force of Lucius, paved themselves a way to the capital — where the Prince and the Saint, riding the “Ash-Coloured Knight”, drove the Demon Castle back. — With the Demon Castle gone, the capital was liberated once again three days later on July 4th, 952 S.E.
- In Black History 1, it is Erebonia that the script refers to as ‘that dark earth’.
- Coincidentally, the fight between Jäger leader, Rutger Clausell, and God of War, Baldr Orlando, ended in a similar tie.
- Is the enormous statue in the Nord perhaps the actual Giant that got knocked down into the earth?
- In sum, there are a total of six princes involved in the Lion War. The first prince and son of the true princess that got assassinated was Manfred; the second prince and tactician, Albert; the third prince and illegitimate child, Dreichels; the fourth prince and son of the second princess, Orthrus; the fifth prince known for his unparalleled strength, Gunnar; and the sixth and youngest prince known as Lucius.
- It was Gunnar who burnt down the village in the Nord, as seen in Dreichels’ flashbacks.
- Chapter 3 reveals that Erebonia lends its name from “darkness,” or “Erebos”. In Greek mythology, Erebos is the personification of darkness, the god of the subterranean darkness. If the darkness of the underworld and the light of the heavens are like two sides of the same coin, one might wonder what its counterpart hold.
Source text and remarks borrowed from this Japanese blog.