- This page is about a Fate/stay night route. For other uses, see Fate.
Fate is one of the routes in Fate/stay night.
The main heroine and love interest of this route is Saber. Fate is the first route the player will be able to play through in Fate/stay night, and completing it is required to access other two routes, Unlimited Blade Works and Heaven's Feel.
The route emphasizes plot and world building, and the main theme is "oneself as an ideal".1
Shirou Emiya is first drawn into the Holy Grail War after he witnesses the Servants Lancer and Archer fighting at his school. Lancer chases Shirou around the school trying to kill him, adhering to a rule of the Holy Grail War which states bystanders must be killed. Lancer corners Shirou in one of the hallways and mortally wounds him with his Gáe Bolg. Rin Tohsaka, Shirou's classmate and Archer's master, feels guilty about involving Shirou and saves his life using her strongest jewel (a memento given to her by her father). Rin leaves before Shirou wakes up. Shirou, amazed he is still alive, returns to his home and is ambushed by Lancer. Shirou tries to defend himself using a magically reinforced poster, but Lancer easily disarms him. Lancer commends him for his efforts, mentioning he might be the seventh Master, and prepares to finish Shirou off. Before Lancer can kill him, Shirou summons Saber (albeit incompletely), who quickly drives Lancer away using her invisible sword. She then attacks Archer and Rin, who are outside the house, and badly wounds Archer. Saber starts to attack Rin, but Shirou, confused by the situation, stops Saber before she kills Rin.
Rin, grateful to Shirou for sparing her life, offers to take Shirou and Saber to the church where he can learn about the Holy Grail War. There, the priest and moderator of the war, Kirei Kotomine, explains to him the role of Masters and Servants in the quest for the Holy Grail, the magical object which is said to grant any wish. Kotomine also reveals the Holy Grail caused the fire that destroyed Shirou's town ten years ago. Shirou agrees to participate in the war as the seventh Master, wanting to prevent another catastrophic disaster.
As they leave the church, a young German Master named Illyasviel von Einzbern assaults them with her Servant, Berserker. Berserker, whose true identity is the Greek hero Heracles, completely overwhelms Saber. He severely wounds her, but as he lets loose the finishing blow, Shirou jumps into its path, shielding Saber and taking the fatal blow. Ilya, confused by this action, calls off Berserker and leaves.
Later, Shirou wakes up fully healed inside his home. He also sees Rin there and learns she aided him again, caring for him as he recovered. Shirou and Rin agree to form an alliance in order to protect themselves from the pair of Ilya and Berserker, an immediate threat to their lives. The reasoning behind this alliance is simple - each of their servants are operating at a sub-optimal capacity; as part of an incomplete summon, Saber cannot use her full power; likewise, Archer is still recovering from the wounds he received while clashing with Saber. During the course of this alliance, they discover a spell has been placed on the school, one that will drain the life force of anyone within its range.
While investigating the spell and gathering information on other Masters and Servants, Shirou discovers that his old friend, Shinji Matou, is the master of the Servant Rider. Shinji's ancestors were sorcerers, and, despite the power of their bloodline having weakened over the ages, Shinji still successfully summoned Rider. Shinji states he has no desire to fight Shirou and instead gives him information that another Servant resides in the Ryuudou Temple.
Although Shirou does not feel it necessary to fight the Servant at Ryuudou Temple, Saber disagrees and disobeys him, rushing out to confront the other Servant. At the front of the temple, she encounters the Servant Assassin, and the two engage in combat. However, as both begin to execute their special attacks, Shirou arrives, preventing them from fighting any further. This conclusion is preferable to Assassin, who mentions that he sensed a third enemy hiding in the nearby bushes and waiting to see Saber's Noble Phantasm, which would reveal not only her identity but also her weaknesses.
Shirou soon discovers, much to his dismay, that the Master who placed the life-draining spell over the school was Shinji. This revelation is enough to force a confrontation between the two. By this time, Shirou has begun to excel at reinforcement magic and melee fighting, a fact which quickly becomes apparent as Shinji's spells prove useless against his foe. However, as Shirou prepares to deliver the finishing blow, Rider intervenes by pushing Shirou out a nearby window. While falling, Shirou uses a Command Spell to summon Saber, who rescues him. Saber then goes after Rider, who is attempting to use her Noble Phantasm to retreat. After a chase, the two clash atop a skyscraper. Rider attacks Saber with her mount, Pegasus, forcing Saber to reveal her own Noble Phantasm, Excalibur. With Excalibur revealed, Saber makes short work of Rider, defeating her with one blow.
After this event, Shirou begins having visions each morning; the first is of Saber in her past role as Artoria, a lonely monarch who devoted herself solely to fighting for her country. The second vision is of himself, being saved by his adoptive father Kiritsugu Emiya, in a fire. Shirou's memories of his father makes him determined to become a hero, someone who can save people just as his father did; thus, he finds that he and Saber have more in common than he thought.
A short time later, Shirou again encounters Ilya and attempts to befriend her. Instead, he is kidnapped and taken to her castle; fortunately for Shirou, Saber, Rin, and Archer quickly come to his rescue. During the rescue, Berserker and Ilya confront them; Archer opts to fight the pair in order to allow the others to escape. Meanwhile, the trio manage to make it to a rundown shack, where (at Rin's urging) Shirou and Saber have sex in order to replenish Saber's low magical energy. Rejuvenated somewhat, Saber then confronts and attacks Berserker on a more equal footing; despite this, she is not able to inflict much damage upon him. However, while Saber distracts him, Rin attacks Berserker with a surprise attack which decapitates him. Surprisingly, Berserker regenerates. It is then revealed that Berserker's own body is his Noble Phantasm, God Hand, which grants him near-immortality and the capability to rise from death up to 12 times. Unfortunately for Berserker, it is at this time that Shirou's true magic skills awaken, allowing him to trace a copy of Caliburn, Saber's original sword from her past, the use of which ultimately leads to Berserker's demise. With Berserker gone, Ilya is now out of the War; feeling somewhat responsible, Shirou decides to let her stay at his house.
Soon afterward, the Emiya residence is attacked by Caster. Both Shirou and Saber go outside to fight her, but Caster is killed by someone wearing golden armor before a battle can begin. Saber identifies the killer as an Archer-class Servant. She remembers him as an individual from the previous Grail War, which was ended before its completion because the Holy Grail had been destroyed. Shirou learns that Saber was a combatant in the previous war as well; furthermore, she had been the Servant of his adoptive father and had, under his father's orders, destroyed the Grail. It is also revealed that she became a Servant shortly before her death and that her greatest desire remains to return to her life and relive it. These revelations bother Shirou, as he doesn't like the idea of her dying and redoing her life, and falls in love with her after realizing she regrets and needs help.
Shirou returns to the church and asks Kirei Kotomine if a way exists to allow Saber a normal life. Kotomine explains that there is no such way, and sarcastically implies that not even the "mighty" Grail could do such a thing and depicting it as less than omnipotent, as the stories state. Dejected by this information, Shirou decides to take Saber out on a date in order to try to cheer her up. During the date, however, the two are attacked by the Archer in golden armor. Saber and Shirou soon find out he is the legendary Gilgamesh, the "King of Heroes". Shirou shields Saber from Gilgamesh's initial attack, barely surviving the blow. After escaping, a frustrated Shirou recovers and tells Saber he loves her, even kissing, but she rejects him to keep to her duty. Desperate after Gilgamesh's attack, Saber and Shirou head to Kotomine's church to ask for advice, only to discover Kotomine's betrayal: despite his supposedly "neutral" status as the Judge of the War, he is the Master of both Lancer and Gilgamesh. In the resulting battle, however, Lancer opts to aid Shirou and Saber in escaping, resulting in his death at Gilgamesh's hands.
After this event, Kotomine decides to go into active action; he kidnaps Ilya, initiating a final confrontation. Shirou and his allies discover that Ilya was kidnapped because she is the vessel of the Grail - the embodiment of its power. Rin is then heavily wounded by Kotomine, rendering her unable to fight alongside Saber and Shirou. Shirou decides to return Avalon, Saber's final Noble Phantasm which had been inside of Shirou's body up to this point, to her. After this, Saber confronts Gilgamesh, while Kotomine and Shirou face off. Both Shirou and Saber use Avalon simultaneously, nullifying their enemies' attacks, and then proceed to defeat them. With no opposition remaining, the pair destroy the contents of the Grail, ensuring the evil within it will never be used again.
As a result of using the last Command Seal, Saber vanishes to her original time, but not before returning Shirou's feelings. She returns as Artoria, and accepts her past without the wish to change it. At the end of this route, she weakly smiles and tells Sir Bedivere (who is attending her) "I think I will sleep much longer this time...", then passes away. Shirou, meanwhile, decides to live life normally and peacefully with Taiga, Sakura, and Illya, vowing with Rin to keep Saber in their memory.
In the Realta Nua version, an epilogue to this route can be unlocked. Saber goes to Avalon after her death and waits several centuries to see Shirou again. Shirou endures many tribulations in his life and never stops believing that he will find Saber. After he dies, Shirou and Saber are joyously reunited in Avalon.
|Fate • Unlimited Blade Works • Heaven's Feel|
Arcueid • Ciel
Akiha • Hisui • Kohaku