Right off the bat, I love your new Chihaya avatar. Very nice!
Now, as for Tokiomi and Kotomine, I agree. After Episode 1, my hope for these two was that Tokiomi would continue to push Kotomine into situations that he would steadily feel more and more conflicted over, and there'd be a personality conflict at play. Alas, Tokiomi's incredible degrees of inactivity as basically left Kotomine as a free-agent, to do whatever the hell he pleases. That does take a bit of an edge off of both characters, which by extension hurts the Kiritsugu/Kotomine feud a bit.
As much as my Tokiomi sig was originally indeed as a simple joke, I'm increasingly seeing how Tokiomi's characterization may in fact be causing serious problems for Fate/Zero as a whole. I hope that Tokiomi starts actually doing something soon.
Your Tokiomi sig is amusing yet sadly true. The downsides of that behaviour is also making Kotomine stale for me. He was a very intriguing, sly character in FSN. I think he's been underused thus far. Kiritsugu and Tokiomi have had some form of development - Kiritsugu being the anti-hero, Tokiomi not quite as much but right off the bat in Episode 1, he was willing to do some cruel stuff to get what he wanted. Kotomine's internal conflict between good and evil just hasn't manifested at all yet. It's his main drawcard and it hasn't been touched upon.
In the Normal Ending, Shirou uses the projection, destroys the Grail and dies. Epilogue has Sakura waking up feeling good to be alive but in constant agony over the fact Shirou is dead, which makes her unable to appreciate being alive and free. A few months later Rin offers Sakura the chance to live with her. Sakura declines as flashes of the first times she met Shirou go through her mind - the time she healed his wound, the first time they cooked together. Sakura has sold the Matou mansion and has enough money to live in Shirou's place for the rest of her life. Which is what she does...live alone and marking the day each year Shirou left her life with a flower while graudally reaching out to others again, living in atonement for her sins, waiting for each spring to absolve her. Sometime in the future, she teaches Rin's daughter magic, in the house Shirou lived in, surrounded by cherry blossom trees, waiting for the day Shirou will come back, which will never happen...
Spoiler for Heavens Feel True Ending and the one Nasu indicates is the real ending out of all five:
True Ending - Shirou wants to live, somehow. He knows Sakura needs him and he wants to be with her. But he is ready to die to destroy the Holy Grail. But at the last minute, Ilya's spirit, the vessel that opens the gate, shuts the gate and says a final goodbye thanking Shirou for the short time they were together, causing Shirou's memories to come back. Ilya's final words remind Shirou that his copy of Rin's necklace still has enough energy in it for one miracle...
Fast forward two years. Rin returns from London for a few days. She's done her explaining to the Magic Association as to what happened in the Fifth Grail War. She was let off at the last minute when Zelretch the sorcerer suddenly returned, saying Rin was the Tohsaka mage he'd been hoping for and takes Rin as his apprentice. After reminiscing around Fuyuki for a bit and checking the Tohsaka mansion over, she heads to Shirou's house. Rider is there in black T-shirt and jeans, now a familiar. Sakura is there and doing well, finally happy and is going to learn magic from the new 'priest' the Association sent as well as the tutoring Rider gives her. Shirou is alive, thanks to a miracle, but in a different body. Ilya's miracle saved Shirou's Soul with the Third Sorcery - transferring matter - into a human-like body. Rin details how she plans to live the future but that she shouldn't think things will be ideal too fast and that things will be fine. Things end with them seeing the cherry blossoms Sakura always wanted to see and looking forward to the future.
And there you have it. Yes, Heavens Feel is much longer, darker, involving, detailed, chilling and uplifting. I'd order the individual routes as Heavens Feel, Fate and Unlimited Blade Works for my preferences. For the indivudual endings, it would be:
Heavens Feel True
Unlimited Blade Works Good
Umlimited Blade Works True
Heavens Feel Normal
Heavens Feel certainly uncovers a lot of evil players that weren't quite as apparent the first time and certainly brings to light how much hell Sakura was forced to go through. Nasu refers to Fate/Zero as Heavens Feel 'Urobuchi style' aka more extreme. But even within such a dark arc as Heavens Feel, Nasu still does what I like about him - his characters go through extreme conflict, their belief systems are challenged, they make mistakes - some unforgivable - but they keep going and find a way. Even someone as forsaken as Sakura can find salvation within the Nasu universe. Shirou's concepts of heroism that persisted through the Fate and Unlimited Blade Works arcs certainly crumble in Heavens Feel as he adopts a completely different set of ideals. But frankly, he needs too. Fate route, he has ridiculous luck and the best Servant in Saber to save him over and over. Unlimited Blade Works, again Saber is ever reliable despite the merry-go-round and the Archer factor spurs him on. This time, it's something different, harder and the mistakes hurt more. But he still finds a way and it's the one route Sakura gets salvation. Nasu's themes on heroism, atonement, love, abuse, salvation - they ring true in all the arcs but the most in Heavens Feel.
Having now played through FSN and read Fate/Zero in novel form - I'm now convinced Fate/Zero will mainly be entertainment and show. Urobuchi's themes won't be as deep or complex. The content will be darker - even darker than Heavens Feel. There will be far more villains and anti-heroes. My main question is - will Urobuchi be able to connect the dots to Nasu's Fate/Stay Night? I guess he will overall but not in the detail I think is required. I think somehow things in Fate/Zero make more sense after playing Fate/Stay Night in full.
Anyways, Fate/Stay Night the game is incredible. You should play it. For how good a story it is as well as to allow things in Fate/Zero to make more sense.
Zouken isn't quite dead yet. The core of his soul exists inside the crest worm in Sakura's heart, so Kotomine didn't kill him after all. But as always is the case with Assassin - the eyes can deceive, as he's not finished either. The final part of his plan is ready - to take over Sakura's body and become immortal. However, Sakura is now at the point she has her own free will. Sakura kills Assassin with one hit. After that, Sakura rips out the crest worm inside her, then kills Zouken, taking long overdue revenge. Zouken made one fatal error - he thought Sakura would always be pure and easy to control. He was dead wrong.
The trio of Shirou, Rin and Rider make their final assault at the Great Holy Grail site underneath Ryudou Temple where Sakura is. Sark Saber is waiting for them but has orders to let Rin pass as Sakura desires a final showdown with her. Rin is allowed past and finds Sakura at the Holy Grail site, but she is effectively Avenger in full now. She is willing to kill even Shirou now and truly forsaken. Thus their battle begins.
Rider can fend off Dark Saber with her agility but only for so long. Eventually faituge is catching up. However, as they planned last night, Rider sets up her chains to temporarily trap Dark Saber and give her one chance to use her Noble Phantasm. Dark Saber uses hers at the same. The two are about equal in strength so Shirou enhances's Riders with an Aius projection. It signifcantly wounds Dark Saber but isn't fatal. Shirou approaches Dark Saber just as she is conscious once more and delivers a killing blow to the heart with a magical dagger Rin gave Shirou. Shirou banishes any memories of Saber to a place he'll never find them and acknowledges that his choice to save Sakura was always going to cause pain and sins he'd never be able to seek forgiveness for.
Sakura doesn't have the upper hand in the final battle as she thought. Indeed, she effectively has an infinite energy supply, but her output equals Rin's. Rin uses the Zelretch sword to gather equal amounts of dimension from the cave in different realities to replaice Saber's Excalibur phantasm. Eventually the long, deep grudge within Sakura comes to the surface. Sakura hates the fact Rin, her idol, was the one who was allowed to remain free while Sakura endured eleven years of pure hell without anyone showing remorse or hearing her cries. Sakura wanted Rin to be the one to save her. Rin replies that she doesn't have it within her to appreciate what those that suffer feel and that she couldn't care. However, she says that she never considered her life blessed at all. The words leave Sakura incensed. Rin uses the opportunity to call Sakura's name and prepare the final blow. But at the final moment, Rin can't do it and lets Sakura stabs her instead while hugging Sakura and delivering a voice filled with warmth that is normally not within Rin. Rin's final words convey regret for being a selfish sister, thinking Sakura had it better and thanks Sakura for wearing her ribbon. The action restores fragments of sanity to Sakura. The cave begins to collapse as Sakura realises what she's done.
Shirou races to where the Holy Grail is and finds Sakura crying and rejecting the shadow that has consumed her. Sakura wants to kill herself but Avenger won't allow its host to do that. However, Tohsaka isn't dead. That news brings light back to Sakura but Avenger refuses to release her, trying to kill Shirou. Sakura pleads with Shirou to leave her, saying her sins can't be erased. Shirou tells Sakura to take responsibility for them, uses projection to summon Caster's dagger that breaks Master-Servant contracts, strikes the black covering Sakura, breaking her contract with Avenger and freeing her. Rider appears and Shirou orders her to take Sakura and Rin to safety. Rider complies, asking Shirou to live saying that Sakura needs him in order to be able to live on.
Shirou prepares to destroy the Holy Grail summoned from Sakura. However...there's one final twist in the tale. Kotomine is still alive - barely - and hellbent on seeing Avenger born since seeing evil and suffering is all that makes him feel alive. Kotomine conveys his respect for Shirou, saying they're alike but have opposite ideals and begin their final battle.
Zouken is somehow alive by a thread within one worm, but Justizia, the Einzbern girl that sacrificed her life to summon the first Grail, appears and finishes him off.
Kotomine seems the stronger but Shirou is fuelled by the thoughts of Sakura to punch Kotomine to death. Shirou readies one final projection to destroy the Holy Grail, knowing it will kill him. And here is the split for the two different endings
On the 13th day, Assassin appears and forces Shirou to go meet Zouken. Zouken says that although his own plan is still on track, the shadow within Sakura has gone way out of hand and he tells Shirou killing Sakura is the only option. Shirou and Sakura have a final conversation in which Sakura knows the end is coming. Shirou decides that night he has to kill Sakura if he ever will. But at the moment he's about to, he doesn't. (Aka that is the right decision, remember the bit about Rider killing anyone who will kill Sakura?) Since Shirou did the unexpected choice and let her live, with her final moments of sanity, Sakura uses her final Command Spell and tells Rider to protect Shirou at all costs, thus relinquishing ownership of Rider. But because Avenger lies dormant within her via the shadow, Sakura is still a Master and sets out to kill Zouken on the 14th day. Rin realises this but Rider prevents her from chasing Sakura. Shirou goes to Kotomine for advice and Kotomine admits the only reason he's been helping Shirou and Rin is so Avenger will be born and destroy humanity. But he is the one person who provides Shirou with the proof he can still save Sakura, but at a coast. Kotohime seems to be more advice-friendly in this route because this is the one route Shirou isn't sharing the ideals Kiritsugu did and Shirou's emotions are still intact while Kiritsugu threw his away and blindly proclaimed justice. While that happens, Shinji finds Sakura and tries to assault her, but Sakura resists for the first time in her life and kills Shinji. Thus the switch has been flicked and Sakura goes insane. She then goes after Rin and tries to kill her, but Shirou returns in time and saves Rin from the shadow mud. Sakura eventually loses her patience and tries to consume Shirou and Rin, but Rider emerges and saves them. Ilya then voluntarily surrenders to Sakura, knowing that Dark Saber will kill everyone if she doesn't. Sakura uses one temporary moment of sanity to tell Shirou to give up on her and never come to her again.
The 14th night offers a delicious twist. Both Shirou and Rin passed out from shadow effects but live - again because of Kotohime who healed them after Rider left them at the church. Kotomine then proposes a temporary alliance between himself and Shirou to save Ilya, for without her, the gateway opened by the Holy Grail won't be opened. So they both make a last-ditch attempt as they head to Einzbern Castle. Matou Zouken is revelling in Sakura being so close to becoming the Holy Grail while she suffers, still under his control. Assassin is beginning to disagree with Matou's motives, ones he had previously agreed with. This is probably the one point where Kotohime looks cool for me. When Assassin and Dark Berserker catch up with the trio, Kotomine goes after Assassin and tells Shirou to get away with Ilya. Kotomine manages to outsmart Assassin and kill him as well as banish Zouken's soul. Shirou manages to perform projection magic to fend off Darker Berserker but is about to lose, but Dark Berserker is convinced by Ilya to stop and lets Shirou kill him. Sakura is now in yandere mode and comes across a near-dead Kotomine. Sakura claims that the real Sakura is now dead and that she is something better now, but Kotomine correctly deduces it's still the same Sakura, but one who gave in. Sakura loses it and slowly rips Kotomine apart, but before she can finish him, the soul of Berserker goes into the Grail in her and leaves her reeling, causing her to withdraw. A discussion between Shirou, Rin and Ilya details the existence of Angra Manyu aka Avenger (whose origins I explained earlier) and that the Holy Grail must be destroyed to prevent Avenger from manifesting and wiping out humanity. Shortly after, Sakura appears at night. She warns that Avenger will soon be born by the next night and that she can no longer prevent it, but claims she will kill Avenger when the moment comes and herself, as well as asking Shirou and Rin to flee town. Rin coldly retorts Sakura and vows to kill her - something that excites Sakura and a confrontation she greatly desires. The rest of the 15th night is spent doing a projection of the Tohsaka family's most valuable possession - a magical dagger used by Zelretch, one of the few legitimate sorcerers and one who can traverse different realities. However it takes an immense toll on Shirou - his memory is vanishing and his body is on the verge of breaking down. It is virtually impossible for him to live through the imminent final battle. Rider approaches him and asks what his final plans are, ready to kill him if she doesn't like the answers. Shirou is still resolved to say Sakura no matter what, as it was the first time Rider asked him. Rider decides to give Shirou her support in the final battle.
Initially, things are okay. Sakura is able to keep herself under control with Shirou's help. And ironically, suddenly the sex scenes come flying out...there's three in this route and strangely, despite the ominous and twisted content...they're easily the most genuine/affectionate/carnal. Typical Nasu...but I digress. Shirou is now resolved that the only way to save Sakura is to win the Holy Grail War hismself and use the wish to save Sakura. There's some really funny scenes involving Sakura and Rider on top of the funnier ones in the first few days where every times Sakura looked like she had Shirou, someone would ruin the timing...(There is a point) Shirou, Sakura and Rider agree their best course of action would be to team up with Ilya and Berserker. Ilya does want to win the war but her desire to kill Shirou is long gone. On the way to Ilya's castle, Shirou and Rin cross paths. Rin decided to follow Shirou since he actually knows how to get to the castle, but that becomes a mute point. Shadow Sakura emerges again while Sakura sleeps and goes after Ilya. In the forest, Ilya tries to fend it off with Berserker but the shadow releases Dark Saber, who kills Berserker with ease, then Archer moments later...however, Archer makes one meaningful dying action. In the chaos, Shirou saves Ilya from being consumed by the shadow, but at the loss of his left arm...Archer cuts his own off and gives it to Shirou. While Shirou is unconscious, Kotohime transplants the arm onto Shirou. Shirou now has greater projection magic power, but there's a big problem...if Shirou does use Archer's arm for magic, it will ruin him and then kill him after a few uses. Kotohime warns Shirou that this is the path he chose because Shirou chose to save Sakura specifically rather than others and that he will have to make more fatal choices if he wishes to save Sakura. The scene gets defused a bit by a hilarious argument between Rin and Ilya when Shirou says they need to band together and live together for the immediate future. There's an intriguing interlude where which details how forsaken and insane Kotohime has become - I'll be interested to see whether Urobuchi and co. nailed the story leading up to that.
An amusing yet uneasy situation prevails at Shirou's home with the three girls all under his roof. Sakura can understand it's for Shirou's good but since he's the only thing keeping her sane, the idea of losing him to the Grail War - or to another person - is whittling away at her sanity. Rider gradually understand that Shirou geniuinely wants to save Sakura but warns Shirou that if he ever betrays Sakura - even for the greater good - Rider will kill Shirou. The next day, plans to find Zouken are made, with some amusing results. (Sakura going mental when Rin asks Shirou to take his shirt off is gold!) The leadup to Sakura finally being able to call Rin Nee-san to Rin's face is also good and a very important point later on, since it plants the seed within Rin that she has to acknowledge that Sakura is her sister and not just an enemy she can see through simplified ways. On the 11th day, little things begin to creep in to show Sakura is gradually being lost despite her brave face. Her loss of taste, occassional blackouts, increased need to sleep. Reassurances and the odd bit of sex are keeping her sane but the shadow's murdering is increasing in number dramatically when she sleeps. But on the 11th night, she realises that she and the shadow are connected, a fact which has her on the edge of losing it. To make matters worse, Shirou's transplanted arm continues to give him issues, specifically memory loss, time loss and distrotion. Rin and Ilya help train Shirou to control the issues and be able to perform the projection he will need to in order to win, as the trio are all without Servants and Rider is required to ensure Sakura's safety. This fact instills in Sakura that Rin is now in charge if Shirou and that he will probably die in what comes next. Concluding that Rin is taking Shirou away, Sakura is one step shy of going insane. Ilya also warns Shirou that any idea of an idyllic life once the war is over is impossible. Ilya knows her time is about to end no matter what happens, that Shirou's is likely too as well and that maybe Sakura can't be saved. On the 12th night, Shirou is finally forced to accept Sakura is the shadow. Sakura also realises that within the nightmare that same night. Ilya visits Sakura the next morning and warns Sakura no matter how hard she tries, eventually the shadow will take over and that only death can save her.
In Heavens Feel, Shirou gave his time and affection to Sakura. Shirou finally got wise to how seriously Shinji was mistreating Sakura and engineered a way for Sakura to stay at his place, especially after he found out Shinji became a Master. In the other routes, Sakura would quickly fade from the picture after the school fights with Rider. This time, Sakura would always be in the picture. Beeing freed from her daily hell gave Sakura hope that perhaps it would all finally end. But there was one big problem...Avenger had selected Sakura as its host mother to be born into the world via the dark Grail Zouken had engineered. And thus whenever Sakura slept, a shadow version of Sakura would go out and murder...to harvest souls to prepare for the Grail's manifestation and to bring Avenger into this world by taking over Sakura's body in the process...Even though Rider was now Shinji's <aster, it was Sakura who was expending the magical energy to keep Rider in this world as well as being the conduit for Avenger. The toll was horiffic and Sakura would gradually become prone to fevers, collapses and losing time. Whenever she slept, Avenger would force her to do the unthinkable unknowingly and without consent...
Despite Shirou being a Master that probably wasn't worthy of Saber, in this route, Saber actually gets off to a good start. She easily takes out the fake Assassin and Caster very quickly - unlike the struggles/delays in the other routes. Kotohime is impressed with Shirou's progress and converses with Shirou MUCH MORE in this route, as Kotohime now sees Shirou as a plausible winner, but as very much like himself - although he wouldn't admit it until much later. (There's a hilarious scene at a Chinese restaurant where Kotohime eats an excruciatingly hot mapo tofu THREE TIMES while talking to Shirou!) Kotohime informs Shirou of Kiritsugu's anti-hero past, which causes much mental conflict for Shirou. Zouken also approaches Shirou, pretending that Sakura won't be involved in the Holy Grail war..which is a blatant lie. Once the fact Ryudou Temple is the source of comas in the city - but ones different to the other two routes, Saber and Shirou go for their usual assault on the temple. But things go horribly wrong this time. Saber is about to defeat the real Assassin (who only appears in this route and sided with Zouken) but the shadow Sakura consumes Saber. Zouken is about to kill Shirou but Rider saves Shirou at the last second. Unlike other routes where Rider always died early, this time Rider survived what everyone thought was her death and Shinji stayed in the running. However, Shinji's jealousy of Shirou was consuming him, paticularly since Sakura was now staying with Shirou, leaving Shinji no one to abuse. Shinji thus threatened to kill Sakura unless Shirou came to him alone, without Tohsaka's help, as Shirou formed a tenative alliance with Tohsaka the day after he lost Saber. Shirou was forced to fight Rider himself, however Rider held back and didn't kill Shirou - partly by her own design. Rider creates an opening for Shirou to beat Shinji and does with Tohsaka's help. In the ensuing mayhem, Rider switches control to Sakura. The resulting effect re-awakens the crest worm within Sakura that had been dormant ever since Sakura refused to take part. Within the crest worm that became her Magic Circuit, Zouken had implanted a command - that as long as Sakura was a Master, she could never do any action to not kill other Masters. Sakura is coerced into almost killing Shirou and Rin in the process. For Sakura to abandon the Grail War is now death. But to continue means the crest worm will consume her energy at a rapid rate and kill her within days. Sakura is effectively doomed and exists as Zouken's puppet now. Shirou and Rin come to blows after Sakura is 'treated' by Kotohime - Rin is determined to kill Sakura to prevent Zouken from winning since Sakura is effectively doomed now. Shirou goes against his belief system and in this route decides to save one life at the cost of many. He chooses to save Sakura. Thus he casts away the hero he had planned to be and chooses a different path. Sakura is fairly resistant but Shirou's loyalty wins through and allows her to cling onto hope. However, Rin warns both of them if Sakura shows any sign of coercion by Zouken, Rin will kill Sakura and if necessary, Shirou as well. In the other two routes, Shirou relied on Rin's help all the way. In this route, Shirou breaks his promises with Rin within one day. That is how radically Shirou changes his ideals within this route.
In that sense, it is fortuitous Rin was alive and untainted once the Fourth War concluded, thus taking it upon herself to become the magus her family had never been able to reproduce. Sakura would suffer eleven years of abuse from Zouken and the lust-worms as well as rape, mainly from Shinji due to his perpetual jealousy. The actions between the two in Fate and Unlimited Blade Works did indicate that it was happening, but amazingly no one else noticed, or at least how sinister it was. Sakura would kill her heart and feelings in an effort to endure the evils inflicted upon her. Rin knew Sakura was probably in some form of harm, but she didn't know the degree due to the secret nature of the Matou's powers. Nor was she in a position to be able to help Sakura or even talk to her. The two sisters were separated and Sakura was doomed to a hell no one would ever save her from.
Or so Zouken thought...Four years before the Fifth War came an event that would ultimately affect Sakura and Rin and be the gradual trigger for Sakura's salvation. In middle school one day, Sakura watched a boy spend three hours trying to clear a high jump. Sakura couldn't help but admire how the boy never gave up. Yes, the boy was Shirou but he never knew this until Sakura told him early in Heavens Feel. What neither knew was that Rin also saw Shirou that day and it had a lingering effect on her, since Rin and Shirou have very different approaches and motivations.
The Einzberns were furious at Kiritsugu's betrayl when they had finally won a Grail War. Irisviel had served her purpose and perished. However, they still had Ilyasviel. Thus the Einzberns followed up with their backup plan - Ilya was a Homunculus just like her mother and designed to be a vessel. Ilya was raised to be the host for the fifth Holy Grail summoning and was raised to be guaranteed having Berserker. Ilya's already guaranteed short life by being the gate-opener to the Holy Grail meant being assigned a Servant that would shorten her life was arbitrary. Raised without love and having only Berserker to rely on, Ilya was given two orders. To kill Kiritsugu and Shirou, as well as help summon the Fifth Grail.
10 years after the Fourth War, the Fifth War started. In all routes, Shinji was never a real Master - he had no magical lineage any more. Sakura was the only person capable of being a Master for the Matous and summoned Rider. However...learning Shirou was also a Master when she met Saber killed any desire she had to ever fulfill her role. The two years Sakura has spent with Shirou after meeting properly one day when Sakura helped patch up an injury Shirou had had given her something she'd never felt in her life - hope, fulfillment, happiness. Sakura was suffering in silence but there was a way for her to enjoy even a small part of days if she could be with Shirou for meals and at the archery club. However, Shirou quit after an incident with Shinji. Shinji knew of Shirou's real identity and hated him for the fact as well as that he could never be a magus and took out his hate on Sakura. However, Sakura's deferrence meant Zouken had to given Shinji his chance with Rider. Caster's original master is never revealed in any route - what is certain is that she always summoned the fake Assassin since Caster had the ability to be a Master, as well as that it was Kuzuki, a teacher at Shirou's school, who took in Caster to keep her in the running by becoming her new Master, albeit Caster was in control. (Note - In Unlimited Blade Works, Caster is the dominant servant, controlling Assassin and temporarily Saber and killing Kotohime early) Rin's trademark to make one critical mistake at crucial moments meant she would get Archer despite the fact she was the strongest Magus participating. Ilya gets Berserker as expected and was well prepared. Kotohime summoned Lancer and took an observational approach, as always. Shirou, as always, summoned Saber when Lancer had him ready to die.
As in the Fate route, Saber quickly dispatched of Archer but didnt finish him as he escaped to spirit form before he could be killed. Rin temporarily took Shirou under her wing to get Shirou up to speed, but unlike the other two routes, Rin didn't think it was appropriate to ally with Shirou actively. Rin couldn't come to terms with Shirou's approach and her years of training in solitude convinced herself that any person was able of overcoming anything by themselves and that they simply had to will themselves to do it. Perhaps this is why she never sought to save Sakura any earlier...Ilya launced an early attack on Shirou and Rin, but as in Fate, Shirou's reckless attempt to save Saber caused Ilya to back off in the fighting for many days.