About a week later, Corrin had been spending time with her Hoshidan family, but she was feeling guiltier than before. Ryoma had offered to train her, but he reminded her of Xander. Hinoka took her for a pegasus ride, and that reminded her of wyvern rides with Camilla. With reminders of her Nohrian siblings around her, it was hard for her to feel comfortable. It was a bit easier to get along with Sakura, since she wasn’t as outgoing as Elise, but Takumi refused to be around her any more than necessary.
Mikoto was very kind, but Corrin didn’t know what to think of her. She had never known a real mother. Camilla was the closest thing that she could call a mother, but that was more of an overprotective sister relationship. She had no idea where to start with her. Mikoto had given Corrin a ring in the shape of the sun, a symbol of the royal family, but when she thought of the moon necklace given to her by the man that she called “Father”, she felt torn.
Soon, Mikoto asked Corrin to meet her in the throne room. After a few wrong turns, she arrived. Seeing Mikoto by the throne, she walked up to the base of the stairs. Her mother saw her and smiled. Coming down the steps, she greeted her daughter.
“Corrin. Thank you for coming.”
“Is there something wrong… Mother?”
Corrin was still uncomfortable calling her “Mother”, but it made her happy to hear it.
“Oh no. Nothing’s wrong. I just wanted to talk with you this morning.”
“Very well. What did you want to talk about?”
“Well, for starters, I wanted to ask you if you remembered anything about your early life here in Hoshido yet.”
When she heard that question, Corrin looked down in shame. She felt some connection with Mikoto, Ryoma, and Hinoka, but, no matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t remember any life other than in Nohr.
“I’m sorry, Mother. I haven’t been able to remember that life. Could you perhaps tell me some stories about those days?”
Her Mother was pleasantly surprised at that request, and she happily obliged.
“Well, one time, you asked Ryoma to take you to the lake to play. We wondered what you had in mind, but we soon found out when you two came home an hour later. It turns out that you decided to climb a tree and jump into the water, but the branch broke and you broke your arm. After it was healed, you went over and tried the stunt again. This time, you landed in the water.”
She paused and laughed a bit before she finished the story.
“Hinoka was worried that you hurt yourself again, so she jumped in after you. She was pretty sour after you dunked her when she reached you.”
Corrin laughed a bit at that memory as well. It seemed like something that she would do. If fact, when she tried to picture it, it seemed rather clear.
“Anyway, the other thing that I wanted to talk about is-”
She didn’t get any farther, because Ryoma, Hinoka, Takumi, and Sakura came in, along with a blue haired woman that Corrin had seen around Castle Shirasagi.
“Mother, Yukimura tells me that the preparations are complete.”
“Thank you for telling me, Ryoma.”
Mikoto turned back to Corrin to explain.
“I want the people to know that our lost princess has returned home. There is going to be an announcement in the plaza, and I want to introduce you personally.”
Corrin was nervous when she heard that, but there didn’t seem to be any harm in doing that. Her only concern was how her Nohrian family would react if they found out.
“I want you to come out to there soon. Why don’t you change. It’ll make you feel like you belong a bit more.”
Nodding, she went back to her room and pulled out a traditional Hoshidan kimono. Before she slipped off her clothes, a knock came from her door. It opened and the blue haired woman from before came in. It was then that Corrin noticed an interesting necklace that she wore.
“Hello. I thought that you might need some help with that, since you’re not used to the clothes here.”
Not knowing who exactly she was, Corrin decided to just outright ask.
“Thank you. I’m sorry. I’ve seen you around the castle, but I’ve never asked your name.”
The woman stared for a bit, then responded.
“My name is Azura. I… used to be a princess of Nohr.”
“What? How did you end up in Hoshido then?”
Her eyes grew distant. It was as if she was remembering a bitter past, but then the sadness disappeared.
“I was kidnapped as a response to your abduction. Queen Mikoto raised me as her own.”
That caused Corrin to stare at her for about half a minute. Azura continued.
“Don’t worry about it. I’ve never felt as if I was a prisoner here. The royal family has always been kind to me.”
Feeling a bit guilty, Corrin allowed Azura to help her. Soon they were on their way to the plaza. Before they could leave the castle, Takumi stopped them.
“Just letting you know, I don’t trust you yet… sister.”
Azura seemed as shocked as Corrin was, with the way he spoke to her.
“Takumi, that’s a little too far. She’s your sister. Can’t you try to trust her?”
“Shut up, Azura. You were born in Nohr. She was raised there. Why should you two be trustworthy?”
“…Excuse us, Takumi.”
As they pushed past him, Azura started to apologize.
“I’m sorry, Corrin. Even though I’ve lived here for most of my life, he’s always hated me for my heritage. I don’t understand why he has placed malice on you.”
Azura kept apologizing, but Corrin was only half listening. She was wondering why there was so much hate in him, then she realized that relations between Nohr and Hoshido were rocky from the moment she was taken there. Of course, he would feel this way towards Nohr.
“Don’t worry. I understand. I was raised in Nohr. He seems to hate anyone who has any connection with Nohr.”
Walking through streets with vendors and shops, the two princesses made their way to the center of town, where Mikoto was waiting. The ceremony was about to start. Once they arrived, everything was ready.
“People of Hoshido, ever since King Sumeragi was murdered, we have been trying to bring his daughter home. When she was kidnapped by Nohr, we sent scouts to find her. Now their work has been rewarded. Princess Corrin has returned home.”
The announcement was met with a rousing cheer. The crowd was so excited, they didn’t notice a strange figure come around the area until he was right at the front of the crowd. Summoning a sword wreathed in violet shadows, he brought it down on the ground, causing a massive explosion. When Corrin saw this, she became stiff with fear. Once the explosion started to fade, she noticed some shards of the sword coming right for her. She tried to dodge, but one of them got lodged in her shoulder. Crying out in pain, she crumpled on the ground.
“Corrin! Hold on!”
She heard voices calling out to her. She couldn’t tell who was calling, but she could see Ryoma attacking the figure. As his sword reached, the man, the cloak split and he disappeared. Not knowing where the man was, she started panicking.
Soon, the roaring that she heard at the canyon came back. Her eyesight tinted red again and the roaring grew even louder. Before long, she just couldn’t take it anymore. The pain and fear was too much. She let out a scream, but the roaring mingled in. Suddenly, she was encased in a pillar of magic. Her hands morphed into claws and her skin felt as if it was covered in scales. Before she knew it, she had transformed into a dragon.
Everyone was amazed that such a thing was even possible, but they were even more anxious about what she might do. Once everyone had enough time to properly gawk at Corrin, they began to see a vague sign of several translucent warriors. They drew their weapons and prepared to defend themselves. The dragon Corrin was their main target, so they worked on defending her the most, but she just tore through them. They stood no chance against her. After the soldiers were gone, Corrin was still in her dragon form, and everyone was scared that she might turn on them too. Before anything like that could happen, Azura started singing. Her necklace started to glow, and a watery substance started to surround her.
“You are an ocean of waves”
As she vocalized, the water around her continued to grow. Walking towards Corrin, Azura tried to calm her. Ryoma tried to stop her from getting close, but the minute he touched the water, he was pushed back several feet.
“You are an ocean of waves,
Weaving a dream,
Like thoughts become a river stream”
Corrin started to back away from her a little, but Azura just smiled and kept singing.
“Yet may the tide ever change-Ah!”
The cry of pain came when Corrin brought a claw down on her. The only thing that kept Takumi from rushing to them was Mikoto holding him back. The dragon let out a roar, but then stopped when Azura finished her song and the water surrounded them both.
“Flowing like time,
To the path,
Yours to climb.”
The dragon started to glow a bit. Soon it started to shift and change back into a human. Corrin still had the shard in her shoulder and she was still in pain. Falling on the ground, she started to black out. Before that, however, she heard Mikoto calling out to both her and Azura. Another voice, closer to her, was more clear, though.
“Stay calm, Corrin. You’re going to be fine. Hinoka, get the healers.”
Corrin couldn’t help but think that Ryoma’s telling her that seemed rather familiar, as if she had heard someone speak similarly in yet another painful time.
A young girl was sitting in a tree, waiting for her father to come and get her. He was in Cheve to meet with a leader of another country. After a while, she noticed two other children coming near. One of them had curly blond hair, and the other had medium-length, light violet hair. They were talking about something that was concerning to them, but the girl didn’t understand.
“I hope Father can convince him to help us. I heard that Hoshido is very isolated.”
“I’m sure King Sumeragi will help. Anyway, Father said to try and get along with his child if we see her. I wonder what she’s like.”
The child leaned in a bit to get a closer look, but slipped off the branch. The other two saw her fall and ran over.
“Are you alright?”
The one with the curly blond hair reached her first, with the one with the violet hair close behind. The little girl noticed that she was probably the youngest of the three.
“Don’t worry. It’s not the first time I’ve fallen out of a tree.”
The two older kids looked on her with suspicion as she got up.
“Why were you eavesdropping on us?”
The girl was confused. At the age of four, she didn’t have a wide vocabulary.
“Does “eaves” mean “tree”? If so, then I was leaning in to get a closer look at you, but I slipped and fell. Also, I didn’t drop on you.”
The boy shook his head.
“Eavesdropping means that you were listening in on our conversation. How long were you up there?”
“I’ve been up there for about ten minutes. Daddy told me to go play, but without Ryoma and Hinoka here, it’s a bit boring.”
The older girl seemed shocked when she heard those names.
“Ryoma and Hinoka… Aren’t those King Sumeragi’s children?”
“Yeah. I’m Corrin. I’m the third eldest child and second daughter of King Sumeragi of Hoshido.”
The other kids were surprised. This child was daughter of King Sumeragi?
“My name is Xander. I’m the crown prince of Nohr. This is my sister, Camilla.”
“Nice to meet you, Xander and Camilla. So, your daddy is talking with my daddy right now?”
Sharing a look between them, the Nohrian children nodded.
“Great! If they become friends, that means we’ll see each other more often. Right?”
“I... suppose it does.”
Corrin didn’t seem to sense his hesitation to speak.
“So, what’s Nohr like?”
Camilla was a little nervous to tell her, but luckily, someone called out to the little Hoshidan princess.
“Corrin! Let’s go.”
The conversation was immediately forgotten, as she rushed into the arms of her father.
“Is it time to go home?”
“Yes, Corrin. It is.”
Grabbing her father’s hand, they started to walk away from the Nohrian children. Arriving at their entourage, they were about to go back to Hoshido, but before they could get moving, arrows were shot at them. Two hit King Sumeragi in his side and arm, and one hit Corrin in the shoulder, going all the way through. The pain was agonizing for the four-year old.
“Corrin! Stay calm. We’re going to make it out!”
Falling to her knees, Corrin tried to stay awake for her father. More arrows were fired, and many of them hit Sumeragi as he tried to protect his daughter. Soon, he fell down dead.
It was hard for Corrin to speak. The pain made it hard to concentrate. She saw more arrows fly, and they killed the servants around her, while one hit her in the leg. She couldn’t stand the pain anymore. She collapsed and started to black out, but before she could, she saw a tall figure moving towards her.
It was King Garon.
Opening her eyes, Corrin saw that she was still in the capital plaza. The pain in her shoulder had lessened. She tried to sit up, but someone pushed her back down.
“Stay still, Corrin. You’re almost done.”
Tears started to swell in her eyes when Hinoka said that. Everything was ok. She was safe. But she was upset at everything that she remembered. It made her realize that everything that she ever thought about herself, everything that the man that she knew as her father told her, was a lie.
“Are you ok, Corrin?”
She just shut her eyes, trying to see her real father’s face one last time. Now that she remembered him, the image was clearer than ever. She realized that the vision that she just saw was one of her recurring nightmares. She should have realized a long time ago that something wasn’t right.
Looking up at her older brother, the tears rolled down her cheeks.
“I… I remember Father. I remember the day… that he… died.”
Everyone was shocked, but then they saw how painful it was for Corrin to remember that awful day. Once her wound was fully healed and she was permitted to sit up, Mikoto wrapped her arms around her. Corrin just buried her face in her shoulder.
“He was protecting me! Mother, he died protecting me!”
Her mother just held her, rubbing her back in comfort. As she cried, Yukimura, Mikoto’s tactician, came rushing into the scene.
“Is everyone alright?”
“We’re fine, but the town isn’t. Have some men search the area and help any injured civilians.”
Nodding, he ran off, leaving the royals. Meanwhile, Corrin had finally calmed down.
“I’m sorry. I don’t know what happened to me.”
Hinoka came up and squeezed her shoulder, not the one that had been injured.
“Corrin, you just remembered a painful event. Of course, you’d be crying.”
“No. Not that. How did I turn into a dragon?”
Everyone thought for a minute, then Takumi piped up.
“Maybe the Dawn Dragon gave her the ability to take the form of a dragon when she needs to.
That seemed like the most logical possibility, but Corrin couldn’t be sure. Azura seemed to have something on her mind, though.
“However you did it, you need to be able to control it if you are forced to go into that form again.”
She pulled out a stone, and handed it to Corrin.
“This is a rare dragonstone. It was used by an ancient race of people who could transform into dragons. They used stones like these to transform from human to dragon and back again. Perhaps it will help you control your dragon form.”
“Thank you, Azura.”
The stone pulsated with power, which radiated throughout her body. While everyone was looking at Corrin, Ryoma turned around and started staring at something else.
“Speaking of dragons, the statue of the dawn dragon is destroyed, and look at what’s there!”
Everyone looked up, and also stared. Where the statue was, there appeared a golden katana.
“The Yato-no-kami? I thought that was a myth!”
Corrin was a bit confused when Hinoka said that.
“Yato-no-kami? What’s that?”
“According to myth, it was used in a great war. The details have been lost over time, but some say that it was between humans and the dragons. Why is it here?”
All of a sudden, the sword lifted into the air. It came spinning down to the royals, placing itself in Corrin’s hand.
“What? It chose Corrin to wield it?”
Before everyone could freak out, Kaze came running in.
“Milord! I bring terrible news! Nohrian troops are on the border about to invade!”
Hinoka and Sakura were ready to panic, but Ryoma didn’t miss a beat.
“Takumi, Hinoka, Sakura, we need to go. The troops will need us to lead them. Tell your retentors that we need to move.”
Once they left, he turned to Corrin.
“Sister, I know that you lived in Nohr for most of your life, but we need you to help us defend Hoshido. You carry the Yato now. It means that you need to defeat evil wherever it is. This is your war now.”
Looking down, Corrin still felt unsure about this. Was war really the way to peace? And what if Xander was there? What would happen then? Mikoto also looked as if she didn’t want to let Corrin go, but she knew that she couldn’t pretend that none of that was happening. With a deep breath, she said the five words that she never wanted to say.
“I’ll come with you, Ryoma.”