- 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. She also serves as the servant protagonist of the route as well. 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
Upon first starting the novel, a Prologue is shown, depicting the first three days of the Fate route from the perspective of Rin Tohsaka.
Rin Tohsaka, young magus and successor to the Tohsaka family, reminisces of her late father, who had entrusted Rin with obtaining the Holy Grail ten years ago, before leaving to participate in the Fourth Holy Grail War, and dying during its events.
In present day, Rin prepares to participate in the Fifth Holy Grail War: a secret war between seven magi, Masters, who summon legendary Heroic Spirits from legend and history, Servants, as their familiars to fight to the death, with the goal of obtaining the wish-granting Holy Grail. Having decoded her late father's will, she finds her family's greatest jewel and heirloom - a jewel pendant, containing a vast amount of magical energy.
After arriving at her school, Homurahara Academy, and meeting friend and archery club captain Ayako Mitsuzuri, she finds she is unexpectedly early. She discovers that her clocks had wound back an hour early, suspecting it to be a trick devised by her father for when she opened his will. Rin chats in the archery dojo, and greets club member Sakura Matou. Leaving, she encounters her brother and archery club vice-captain, Shinji Matou, and rebuffs his advances.
Entering the school building, she greets English teacher Taiga Fujimura, and meets student council president Issei Ryuudou. The two argue, and Rin passes by fellow student Shirou Emiya, who is helping Issei with repairs. Completing her classes with teacher Souichirou Kuzuki, Rin returns home to prepare for her summoning, intending to summon a Saber-class Servant. She performs the summoning ritual without a catalyst, only to discover too late she had missed the optimal time due to her mis-timed clocks. She meets her Servant in her destroyed living room - Archer.
Archer turns out to be rebellious, and immediately plans to work independently from Rin. Enraged, Rin wastes one of her three Command Spells, the marks of a Master that can force up to three absolute orders of their Servant, to force Archer into obedience with a vague order. Archer and Rin reconcile and agree to work together, but Archer claims he has suffered amnesia from Rin's botched summoning, and is unable to recall his true identity. Despite this, he swears to bring Rin victory.
Rin skips school to show Archer around her home city - Fuyuki City. Rin explores the city, from the residential district, Miyama Town, to the newer district, Shinto, that had suffered a great fire ten years before. While in Fuyuki Central Park, Archer reveals he knows of Reality Marbles, a taboo Magecraft, but they realise they are being observed before they can discuss further.
From the tallest skyscraper in Shinto, they watch over the town from above. Rin spots a familiar face below, but brushes him off. While returning home, they witness Sakura meeting with a strange blonde-haired foreigner. At home, Rin informs priest Kirei Kotomine, her mentor, former apprentice of her father and supervisor of the current Holy Grail War, of her summoning of Archer as the sixth Master.
Rin returns to school, but discovers that a Bounded Field has been placed over it, revealing another Master resides at the school. Meeting Sakura, she asks about the unknown foreigner, but she brushes the matter off as someone who was lost and asking directions.
After nightfall, Rin remains at school to investigate the bounded field with Archer. Analysing one of its sources, they realise to their horror that, when complete, the field is intended to melt down the people within the field into magical energy, in order to fuel a Servant. Rin prepares to erase the source to slow down the field's progress, but is stopped by the sudden appearance of another Servant: Lancer.
Lancer denies being the source of the field, and attacks Rin, who escapes down to the school courtyard. Archer battles Lancer in the courtyard in close combat. Lancer holds the upper hand, disarming Archer multiple times, but Archer is able to form new swords each time. At a stalemate, Lancer prepares to use his Noble Phantasm, a Servant's ultimate secret weapon, to finish the battle, but is interrupted after he notices a student who had witnessed the fight.
Lancer pursues the fleeing student, to uphold the rule of eliminating any non-magus witnesses of the War. Rin and Archer hurry to stop him, but find the student already mortally wounded, and Lancer gone. To her horror, Rin recognises the student. Thinking of Sakura, and out of guilt for involving him, she decides to save his life. Sending Archer to pursue Lancer, Rin gives up the power of her father's jewel pendant to heal the student. She returns home, leaving the pendant behind.
Archer returns, returning Rin's pendant to her despite being unsuccessful in finding Lancer's Master. They discuss Rin's wish for the Holy Grail, and she reveals she has no wish, only seeking victory in obtaining the Grail, to Archer's surprise. However, Rin suddenly realises that Lancer will have learnt of the student's survival, and return to finish the job. They hurry to the student's home, but find Lancer already fleeing from a sudden surge of magical energy. Suddenly, a sword-wielding Servant emerges from the house and attacks them. Archer is mortally wounded defending Rin, and she uses her second Command Spell, returning him to spirit form to save him. Rin is confronted by the Servant - the seventh and final Servant, Saber - and accepts her coming death.
Shirou Emiya, adopted son of the late magus Kiritsugu Emiya, is woken for school by his close junior, Sakura Matou. Sakura, sister of Shirou's estranged friend, Shinji Matou, regularly comes to his household to help cook and clean for him and Taiga Fujimura, a teacher and Shirou's legal guardian. Having been rescued from a great fire that ravaged Fuyuki City by Kiritsugu 10 years ago, Shirou secretly trains alone in reinforcement magic, with little success. He performs this routine daily, wishing to eventually become a Hero of Justice, to prevent further disasters like the Fuyuki fire, of which he still suffers nightmares, as well as mysterious dreams of swords.
Shirou learns of a gas leak incident in the neighboring district, Shinto, leaving many victims comatose. At school, while aiding his friend Issei Ryuudou in repairs, he passes by classmate and honor student Rin Tohsaka. Completing his day at school and after-school work, he encounters a white-haired girl on his way home, who leaves him an ominous warning before leaving.
Shirou continues his daily routine as normal, and spots an unusual bruise-like mark on Sakura's wrist during breakfast. He believes it was caused by Shinji, which Sakura denies. At school, Shirou learns of an incident in his neighborhood from Issei, where an entire family was murdered the night before under mysterious circumstances. After school and work, he spots who he believes to be Rin Tohsaka, in Shinto, watching the landscape from a skyscraper.
Sakura informs Shirou that she will not be able to help for the weekend on a personal errand, but discovers a strange welt developing on his hand. Shirou continues to experience strange events, including an odd feeling in the air when he enters the school. Encountering Shinji after school, he tasks Shirou with staying to clean the school's archery dojo in his place as a favor, despite no longer being a member.
While cleaning the dojo into the night, Shirou discovers and witnesses the Servants Lancer and Archer fighting in the school courtyard, and is spotted by Lancer. Shirou flees, but is cornered in one of the hallways by Lancer and mortally wounded, in an effort to eliminate whom he believes is a non-magus witness of the battle. Slowly dying, Shirou overhears a familiar voice over him. Unexpectedly, he soon wakes up, alive and healed, with a discarded jewel pendant the only sign of his savior.
Unaware of their identity and amazed he is still alive, Shirou returns home with the discarded pendant. He is quickly ambushed again by Lancer, who had returned to finish the job. Shirou attempts to defend himself with reinforcement, revealing himself to Lancer as a magus, but is quickly overpowered. However, before Lancer can kill him, Shirou inadvertently summons the Servant Saber (albeit incompletely), who quickly drives Lancer away, revealing Shirou as a Master.
Saber duels Lancer, holding an advantage due to her invisible sword. Lancer uses his Noble Phantasm, Gáe Bolg, in an effort to kill Saber, revealing his identity as Cu Chulainn. Saber manages to survive the attack due to her high Luck, after which Lancer flees the house at his unseen Master's order. Soon after, Saber detects another presence outside the house - Archer and his Master - and heads out to attack them. Saber easily overpowers and badly wounds Archer, forcing his Master to return him to spirit form using a Command Spell. Saber prepares to kill the Master, but Shirou, confused by the situation, stops Saber - and discovers the other Master to be none other than Rin Tohsaka.
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 rules of the Holy Grail War: a secret conflict between seven magi, Masters, and their Servants, in the quest for the Holy Grail, the magical object which is said to grant any wish. Aware of Shirou's history and nature, Kirei also reveals the previous Holy Grail War, in which he had briefly participated as a Master, had caused the fire that destroyed Shirou's town, and taunts Shirou's own desire to become a Hero of Justice. Initially reluctant, Shirou agrees to participate in the war as the seventh Master at Kirei's urging, wanting to prevent another catastrophic disaster.
As they leave the church, the white-haired girl, a young German Master named Illyasviel von Einzbern, assaults them with her Servant, Berserker. Berserker, whose true identity Illyasviel reveals as the Greek hero Heracles, completely overwhelms Saber in single combat and severely wounds her. Distraught at seeing Saber near-mortally wounded, Shirou jumps into Berserker's path as he delivers the final blow, shielding Saber and taking the fatal strike. Illya, confused by this action, calls off Berserker and leaves.
Shirou dreams of Kiritsugu's final moments, where Shirou had promised to take up his father's goal of becoming a Hero of Justice, after which he passed away peacefully.
Later, Shirou wakes up fully healed inside his home, learning that Rin had taken him home and cared for him through the night as he recovered. Rin reveals that Shirou had mysteriously healed on his own, and believes it is a power granted by his Servant Saber. With Archer wounded, and Shirou being a weak magus, Shirou and Rin agree to form an alliance in order to protect themselves from the most immediate threat to their lives - Illya, a Master from a distinguished family of mages like the Tohsakas, and Berserker.
Shirou bonds with Saber, while Rin moves in to live at Shirou's house to his dismay. He discovers that Saber is unable to assume spirit form or receive mana from Shirou due to their incomplete connection, severely limiting her capabilities. Saber also withholds her True Name from Shirou as a precaution against mental attacks, and reveals she had also participated in the previous Holy Grail War as a Servant.
Sakura and Taiga discover Rin living at Shirou's house, to their dismay. Rin convinces them to allow her to stay, claiming her house is undergoing renovations. They head to school together while Saber remains behind, sleeping to minimise loss of mana. Shinji arrives to admonish Sakura, but Rin defends her and drives Shinji away, revealing her alliance with Shirou to him.
Meeting at lunch, Rin explains to Shirou that a spell has been placed around the school - a bounded field that will indiscriminately drain the life force of anyone within it to fuel its creator, due to activate in ten days. They deduce that there is another Master at the school, one with no concern for innocent lives, to Shirou's anger.
Returning home, Shirou introduces Saber to Taiga and Sakura, unwilling to let her remain alone. Enraged, Taiga challenges Saber to a shinai duel, but is easily defeated and convinced after they claim Saber was once acquainted with Kiritsugu.
Learning of another gas leak incident on the news, Rin deduces that their cause is from another, much stronger Master, sapping energy from innocents from afar for their Servant.
While investigating the spell at school alone, Shirou follows the spell's traces to the archery dojo, where he is suddenly confronted by Shinji, who reveals himself as a Master. Shinji takes the wary Shirou to the Matou household, where he introduces his Servant Rider. He explains that the Matou family is a bloodline of sorcerers whose power had weakened over the ages, but Shinji still managed to summon Rider despite this.
He claims he is not the Master behind the bounded field over the school, and proposes an alliance with Shirou in exchange for taking down Rin. Still suspicious, Shirou declines, and asks if Sakura knows about the War, wishing to keep her safe. Shinji assures him that she is uninvolved, and in exchange for his concern, informs him that another Master, a "witch", resides in the Ryuudou Temple, collecting souls at a large scale.
Returning home, and confirming Shinji's information in a casual encounter with Issei, who lives at the Temple, Shirou shares what he learnt with Saber and Rin, who are angered to learn he was taken alone into enemy territory. Rin is initially skeptical, but Saber, drawing from her experience in the previous Holy Grail War, informs them that the Temple is a strong ley line, with a bounded field that forces all outsiders to enter only via the mountain gate - therefore a strategically sound base for a Master. Weighing their options, Shirou and Rin both decide not to attack, believing it to be a trap and thus reckless to attack without more information - a decision which Saber strongly disagrees.
Dissatisfied, Saber sneaks out at night to attack the temple alone. At the front of the temple, she encounters the Servant Assassin, guarding the gate, and the two duel to a standstill. Assassin reveals his identity as Sasaki Kojirou, and executes his secret technique, Tsubame Gaeshi. With the technique being incomplete due to the terrain, Saber manages to barely dodge his attack through an opening. However, as Saber begins to unleash her own Noble Phantasm, Shirou arrives following Saber, and is attacked by a third enemy in hiding. Assassin stops Saber, sensing the hidden foe trying to see Saber's Noble Phantasm, and allows her to leave. Saber, however, collapses from exhaustion from using too much magical energy, and Shirou carries her all the way back to his house.
After Saber recovers, she and Shirou argue, with Shirou not wishing to see her be injured and wanting to fight in her place, and Saber being incredulous that he, a weak Master, would want to fight Servants to protect his own, more powerful Servant. With Rin's help explaining Shirou's care for Saber and lack of self-worth, Saber eventually reaches a compromise - she will train Shirou in swordsmanship to allow him to fight alongside her, while Rin teaches Shirou about magic.
Shirou wakes to find that Rin has sent Sakura away, with the deal that Rin would leave if Sakura remained away from Shirou's house for a week. Taiga informs them that fellow classmate Ayako Mitsuzuri had escaped a supposed molester the day before. Shirou skips school to train with Saber, who is merciless in her methods, bonding with her as they spar and spend time together.
Heading to the shopping district, Shirou unexpectedly encounters Illya, who shows no hostility towards him and only wishes to talk. They converse and bond in a nearby park, where Illya tells Shirou about herself and the castle she lives in on the outskirts of the city. Before Shirou can ask further, she suddenly leaves, claiming Berserker had woken up.
Returning home, Shirou accidentally walks in on Saber naked in the bathroom, making things awkward between them, despite Saber having no sense of shame at being seen. Meeting with Rin to train in magic, she learns that Shirou has no Magic Crest, and decides to postpone training while explaining Magic Crests to him. Outside, Shirou meets Archer, guarding the house. Both feeling animosity towards each other, Archer challenges and warns Shirou of the flaws in his ideal of becoming a Hero of Justice before leaving.
Shirou continues his training with Saber, and continues to bond and attempts to learn more about her past and motives. The day proceeds normally (with a second possible meeting with Illya at the shopping district) aside from a surprise visit from Issei and gifts from Taiga. Rin arrives, telling them that Shinji had confronted her and offered to form an alliance with her, while insulting and beckoning her to abandon Shirou. However, she rebuffed and punched him to drive him away, much to Shirou's horror.
Rin continues to train and teach Shirou in magic, and feeds him a jewel that forces his Magic Circuit to switch on, allowing him to properly switch it on at will. Shirou meets with Archer again, who unexpectedly gives him advice - to defeat a stronger opponent by imagining something that could defeat them.
Shirou and Saber continue their training, with Rin also skipping school to help Shirou train his magic. While Shirou trains, Rin and Saber discover the shed in which he trained alone, realising with horror he had also been performing Projection magic. However, Shirou receives a sudden call from Shinji, who tells him to come to school alone.
Arriving at school, Shirou is searching for Shinji when the bounded field - Blood Fort Andromeda - suddenly activates, beginning to melt down the innocent students and revealing Shinji and Rider as the ones behind the field. Shirou confronts the unapologetic Shinji, and easily evades his attacks, but is stopped and forced back by Rider. Unable to stab Shirou, Rider kicks Shirou out a nearby window to kill him. While falling, Shirou uses a Command Spell to summon Saber, who rescues him.
Returning to the building, Saber then holds off Rider while Shirou easily overpowers Shinji. Defeated, Shinji tells Rider to remove the bounded field over the school. Rider saves Shinji from Shirou, and summons her Noble Phantasm to explosively escape the school. Shirou passes out from exhaustion.
He later wakes up back at his house, healed, where he learns that Kirei had handled the repair and aftermath, and that luckily no one had died. He apologizes to Saber for his past stubbornness, and decides to fight with Saber instead of by himself, properly realizing his own uselessness. Though reluctant to let Shirou do so, Saber agrees to his proposal to have him fight alongside her.
Suffering a nightmare of the incident at school, and angry at himself for being unable to prevent it, Shirou resolves to immediately track down Shinji with Saber to prevent a repeat of the incident from happening. The pair search the city throughout the day, but noticing Shirou's fatigue, Saber soon takes Shirou to rest at the Fuyuki Central Park late into evening. They bond, with Shirou explaining the park was the site of the fire he had survived ten years ago, caused by the previous Holy Grail War. Saber begins to understand his motivations further, wishing to prevent more victims like himself and those lost in the fire.
The pair continue their search, and soon Saber senses Rider on a nearby skyscraper. Rider attacks Shirou, but is parried by Saber, who begins to pursue Rider up the skyscraper. While Saber and Rider clash up along the side of the skyscraper, Shirou, thinking Shinji is there as well, heads to the building's rooftop. Reaching the rooftop first, Saber continues her fight with Rider, who reveals and attacks with her mount, Pegasus, forcing Saber to a standstill. Shirou arrives to confront Shinji, and Rider unleashes her Noble Phantasm, Bellerophon, as her final blow. To save Shirou, Saber is forced to reveal her own Noble Phantasm, and annihilates Rider with a single blow with the golden sword Excalibur, revealing her true identity as King Arthur.
Rider's defeat causes Shinji's Command Spell, in the form of a Book of False Attendant, to burn away, ending his status as a Master. He flees while Saber collapses after using Excalibur. Taking Saber back home, Shirou learns from Rin that Saber has almost used up all of her magical energy and she is in danger of disappearing.
Notably, this day takes place over two days.
Shirou has a vision of Saber's past - learning of her origin as the girl Artoria, who drew the sword in the stone to become the monarch King Arthur, setting herself down on a lonely path, devoted solely to fighting for her country with no regard for herself.
After discussing with the now-healed Archer about Saber, Shirou heads to a park to think, only to meet Illya again. However, as opposed to their prior friendly rapport, Illya becomes hostile, and reveals she was present with Berserker during the fight with Rider. She immobilises Shirou with her Mystic Eyes, before capturing him.
Shirou awakens to find himself bound in Illya's room in the Einzbern Castle. Illya intends to preserve and make Shirou her Servant, keeping his soul for her own, but he refuses. Feeling betrayed, Illya leaves to kill Saber and Rin, admitting she had killed Shinji as he tried to flee the day before. Managing to free himself from Illya's restraints, Shirou is fortunately met with Saber, Rin and Archer, who had come to his rescue, sneaking into the castle without resistance. However, during their escape, they are confronted by Berserker and Illya, who had never left the castle. Archer, at Rin's reluctant behest, remains behind to hold off Berserker while they escape, and gives Shirou a final piece of advice before they leave.
The remaining trio escape into the forest surrounding the castle. With Saber's condition rapidly deteriorating, they are unable to escape the forest, and decide to stay the night in an abandoned shack within the forest. They resolve to stand and fight against Berserker, using the time bought by Archer to plan and restore Saber's magical energy. At Rin's urging, Shirou and Saber have sex in order to replenish Saber's low magical energy / perform a ritual to transplant part of Shirou's Magic Circuit into Saber (Réalta Nua).
The following morning, Illya and Berserker set out in pursuit of the trio after defeating Archer, who had managed to kill Berserker six times before falling. With Saber rejuvenated somewhat, the trio plan to ambush Berserker with a decisive attack; Shirou and Saber providing a distraction for a hidden Rin to deliver her surprise attack. Berserker and Illya arrive, and Saber duels Berserker on more equal footing. While he is distracted, Rin executes her plan - getting herself grabbed by Berserker in order to get close and deal her decisive attack. Using half of her magical gems, she decapitates Berserker in a single burst of power.
However, Berserker regenerates - it is revealed that Berserker's Noble Phantasm is his own body, God Hand, which grants him near-immortality and the capability to resurrect up to 12 times. The upper hand regained, Berserker prepares to kill Rin and injures Shirou. Saber prepares to use the last of her energy to use Excalibur, but Shirou stops her with a Command Spell. Shirou, realising the meaning of Archer's words, awakens his true skills in the magic of Projection. Using his dream of Saber's past, he manages to trace a copy of her original sword Caliburn. With Saber's help, they use it to destroy all of Berserker's remaining lives in a single blow, granting him a final moment of lucidity before disappearing. Illya, now out of the War, suddenly collapses; feeling responsible, and convinced Illya is not truly evil, Shirou decides to take her as they leave the forest.
Shirou has another vision of Saber's past - seeing her lonely reign as the king who was fair and perfect. Casting aside her humanity to isolate herself as an unreachable paragon, she had remained steadfast on her lone rule even as she alienated her own trusted knights. Her resolve had led to a time of peace, and victory against the savages threatening her kingdom, but not without some questioning her rule due to her extreme emotionlessness.
With Berserker gone, they return to their daily life, with the addition of Illya now living in the household (to Rin and Saber's dismay), Shirou distrustful of leaving her with Kirei. Grateful to Shirou, Illya swears to help him win the War. Shirou continues his training with Saber and Rin, with Rin discussing Projection, Saber and their future plans. Throughout, Saber's behavior to Shirou is noticeably different; she is less harsh during training, is reluctant to let Shirou be with Rin or Illya, and becomes more embarassed when around Shirou.
That night, Saber meets Shirou, revealing she had seen his past in a dream like he did - witnessing the Fuyuki fire and the cause of Shirou's trauma firsthand. She realises how similar they are, and is determined to retrieve the Holy Grail for both their sakes, but she is irritated when Shirou accepts his past as something that cannot be changed.
Having another vision of Saber's past, Shirou sees the consequences of her deliberate isolation from her people, and how she was rejected by her own knights for not understanding human emotion. He sees the warning given by Merlin before drawing Caliburn, telling her of the lonely path she would walk and the price it would cost. In spite of this, she continued on her path to fight, even if it led to her solitary ruin.
Before finally seeing the end of her path at the Battle of Camlann, where she died alone and betrayed, with her country in ruin. Unwilling to accept the unfairness of her past, Shirou resolves to save Saber, and to repay her for her life well-fought.
Continuing their daily routine, Rin notes that the Master at the Ryuudou Temple has ceased activity, and is investigating the cause. Privately discussing Saber with her, Rin speculates that Saber should also possess Avalon, the legendary sheath of Excalibur, only for Shirou to point out the sheath was stolen.
Shirou, concerned due to the visions of her past, asks Saber about her wish. Saber reluctantly reveals that she, on the brink of death, made a contract with the World to gain the Holy Grail, which made her an incomplete Servant caught in an temporal loop of returning to her point of death and being summoned to retrieve any Holy Grail while the contract holds. She then reveals her wish to redo the selection of the king to undo her rule, believing that will save her country from destruction, and erase her past existence. It is further revealed that she will become a Heroic Spirit sent to eternally serve the World if her wish is granted in exchange. Shirou is unwilling to accept this, as it means she will not receive true salvation for her actions, doomed to serve the World forever while her work is essentially erased from history.
Before any further discussion can be made, the residence is suddenly attacked by Caster and her Dragon Tooth Warriors. Shirou and Saber head outside to confront her, while Rin protects Illya. Caster briefly fights Saber, and it is revealed that Caster had killed her own Master, and that Assassin has already been defeated. Saber resists Caster's spells with her Magic Resistance and rushes in for the kill, but stops after realising Caster intended to lure her in to use her Noble Phantasm. Shirou takes the blow from Caster to defend Saber. Her true target, Caster reveals her intent to capture and use Saber to defeat Lancer, the sole remaining Servant.
However, before they can continue the fight, Caster is suddenly attacked, and brutally killed by a rain of Noble Phantasms from a new arrival - a Servant in golden armor. To her horror, Saber recognises the mysterious eighth Servant as the Archer from the previous Holy Grail War, who leaves after vowing to claim Saber when they meet again. Illya, distraught after seeing the golden Servant, mysteriously faints.
Saber reveals that her previous Master was Kiritsugu, who had suddenly ordered her to destroy the Holy Grail with no explanation, causing the sea of fire ten years ago, where she fought the golden Archer and disappeared. She had seen Kiritsugu only as a cold, emotionless killer, and was surprised to see his kinder side in Shirou's memories. Wishing to answer his questions, Shirou goes to the church to consult Kirei.
Concerned about Saber's wish, he explains her situation to him, and asks if a way exists to allow Saber a normal life. Kirei explains that the only way is to force Saber to drink from the Holy Grail to keep her in the world, though Shirou knows that her retrieval of the Grail also means her death. Kirei also explains the history of the Holy Grail to Shirou, revealing that Illya possesses the vessel of the Grail. Before leaving, Shirou warns Kirei of the golden eighth Servant, which surprises the priest. As he walks home, Shirou finally realizes he had fallen in love with Saber since he first met her, and vows to protect her and make her happy.
Shirou decides to take Saber out on a date in an effort to make Saber happy and convince her to give up her wish. The date goes awkwardly, but without incident. However, on the way home at the bridge, the date ends with an intense argument between the two regarding Saber's wish. Seeing that Saber in truth hates having to fight, Shirou continues to pressure Saber into not redoing the past, and saving her own self to be happy and rewarded for her work already done. However, Saber is steadfast in keeping to what she believes is her oath and king's duty to her country, and refuses to abandon her quest for the Holy Grail. With neither willing to back down, the argument results in Shirou angrily running away after Saber coldly rejects him, stating that she doesn't need him and will finish the war on her own.
When night falls, realising Saber has not returned, Shirou heads out to bring her home. He finds her still at the bridge, still saddened and lost, with nowhere to go. They reconcile, and begin to head home. However, on their way back, the two are confronted by the Archer in golden armor, who has come to take Saber for his own. He injures Shirou and beats back Saber with many Noble Phantasms drawn from thin air. Revealing this ability as his own Noble Phantasm, the Gate of Babylon, the Archer reveals his identity as the legendary Gilgamesh, the "King of Heroes".
Saber prepares to use Excalibur against Gilgamesh, who draws his ultimate Noble Phantasm - the sword Ea. The two Noble Phantasms clash, and Saber is easily defeated, and gravely injured. Unconsciously projecting swords to heal his body, Shirou gets up to fight Gilgamesh again, projecting Caliburn. Gilgamesh, disgusted by the copy, draws its original, Merodach, and defeats Shirou yet again. However, Shirou continues to regenerate and gets back up, whilst confessing his feelings to Saber. Then, to both his and Gilgamesh's surprise, he projects a mysterious object which, with Saber's help, deflects Gilgamesh's attack back at him, damaging him and causing him to retreat.
Shirou, having passed out after the fight, dreams of another vision, of the rebellion held by Saber's son Mordred that led to her downfall. He later wakes up in his room being cared for by Saber. After recovering, a frustrated Shirou again beckons Saber to be happy for herself, and that he loves her. Even after kissing her, she continues to reject him to keep to her duty. However, the two end up sleeping peacefully together after having sex again at Saber's request to recharge her. In Réalta Nua, they simply sleep together peacefully, as requested by Saber, to improve their connection to recharge her.
Shirou heads to the church to ask for Kirei's advice regarding Gilgamesh. However, finding Kirei gone, he investigates, and discovers a secret chamber in the basement under the church filled with dissolving corpse-like bodies, still barely kept alive, that he recognises to his horror. Kirei arrives, and confirms that they are the fellow orphans who had also survived the fire alongside Shirou, kept alive for years to provide magical energy to his Servant. Shirou attempts to escape, only to be wounded by Lancer, revealing the supposedly neutral Kirei as Lancer's Master.
Meanwhile, back at the house, Saber learns from Rin's investigation that Lancer's contract was stolen by someone else very early in the war; Saber then quickly realizes who Lancer's Master must be. However, she soon senses Shirou is in mortal danger at the church and rushes off to save him.
Saber confronts Lancer in the church, and they duel briefly. Kirei stops their fight, and attempts to convince Shirou to use the Grail to change his past, to prevent the fire from happening. Playing on his guilt for abandoning and not saving the orphans and others lost in the fire, Shirou is tempted to curse the fire and use the Grail to erase it from his history. However, Shirou rejects Kirei, and remains resolute that the past cannot be changed and that the path he has chosen is not wrong. Disappointed, Kirei tempts Saber with the Holy Grail in exchange for killing Shirou. Seeing Shirou's resolve, however, she realises her own folly, and rethinks her life, ultimately accepting her past and rejecting the Grail.
Disappointed, Kirei then reveals the full extent of his betrayal, as Gilgamesh suddenly walks in: he is the Master of both Lancer and Gilgamesh, to the surprise of Saber, Shirou and Lancer. He reveals that the Grail is a corrupted vessel that can only grant wishes via destruction, and reveals that it was his wish that caused the fire ten years ago. Kirei then leaves, ordering Gilgamesh and Lancer to kill Shirou and Saber. However, Lancer, no longer able to stand with Kirei, instead turns on Gilgamesh and allows Saber and Shirou to escape at the cost of his life.
Outside, happy that she was able to save Shirou's life, Saber admits that her wish to change her past was selfish. Accepting Kiritsugu's actions, Saber wholeheartedly agrees with Shirou's decision to destroy the Holy Grail. Saber reveals that Shirou has Saber's final Noble Phantasm: Avalon, embedded in his body by Kiritsugu to save his life ten years ago. Acting as the catalyst that summoned Saber in both wars, the sheath was the true source of Shirou's healing ability and was the power that rebuffed Gilgamesh's attack.
Shirou and Saber return home to discover to their horror that Kirei has already acted - kidnapping Illya and severely wounding Rin. They learn from Rin that Illya was kidnapped because she herself is the vessel of the Holy Grail — the embodiment of its power, and that Kirei will be summoning the Grail at Ryuudou Temple. She bequeathes an Azoth Sword to Shirou to fight Kirei before passing out. As the date changes, with Rin stable, and the final battle imminent, Shirou and Saber have a final strategy meeting. Shirou decides to return Avalon to Saber, its rightful owner.
The pair proceed to Ryuudou Temple for the final battle, where the corrupted Holy Grail, a dark hole from which mud made of pure curses endlessly pours, is being summoned from Illya's body. They confront their respective enemies; Saber against Gilgamesh, and Shirou against Kirei. Kirei explains the Grail's nature as corrupted, filled with curses that will flow without end and consume the world. In doing so, he reveals his own wish for entertainment - via the suffering of humans at their moment of death.
As they fight, however, it becomes apparent that their enemies have the upper hand on them; Gilgamesh with the Gate of Babylon and Ea, and Kirei wielding the mud of the Grail's curse. Kirei taunts Shirou, revealing that Kiritsugu was cursed by the Grail for destroying it, resulting in his early death, before smothering Shirou with the Grail's curse, "Angra Mainyu". Gilgamesh aims to force Saber to drink the Grail's mud to gain a body as he did, so he can claim her as his own. Saber resists his advances, and after seeing her determination, he decides to finally go all out and kill her with Ea at full power.
Although Saber is able to momentarily offset Enuma Elish with Excalibur despite being so exhausted she couldn't lift her sword or walk due to her legs not being even at one tenth of their original power, once Ea's turns reach their maximum speed, its light starts to mow down Excalibur. However, both Shirou and Saber overcome their opponents by using Avalon simultaneously: Saber summons the true Avalon, completely blocking Enuma Elish and providing her an opening. She charges towards Gilgamesh before he can react, killing him with a fully-charged point-blank Excalibur. At the same time, Shirou projects a perfect copy of Avalon using its memory within his own body, nullifying the curse around him. Freed, Shirou is able to close in on the surprised Kirei, and stab him with the Azoth Sword. Shirou activates the spell in the sword's jewel, detonating it and killing Kirei. He recognises the sword as a gift he had given to Rin, before dying. With their opponents defeated, Illya is freed and Shirou uses his final Command Spell to have Saber destroy the Holy Grail and its contents, ensuring the evil within it will never be used again.
As dawn rises, with the Holy Grail War over, Saber confesses her love to Shirou before disappearing.
Two months pass, and the damage of the War has passed. Shirou continues to live life normally and peacefully with Taiga, Sakura, and Illya, who is now living with Taiga. Still steadfastly following his ideals to become a Hero of Justice, he meets with Rin on his way to school, and reminisce about Saber. Shirou states he has no regrets about his parting with Saber, and vows with Rin to keep Saber in his memory for the rest of his life.
Saber returns to the site of the Battle of Camlann as Artoria, and accepts her past without the wish to change it. The dying king is carried into the woods by Sir Bedivere. She tells Bedivere that she had seen a valuable dream, and asks if she will be able to see the dream again when she sleeps. Bedivere lies, assuring her that she will be able to, after which she directs Bedivere to return Excalibur to the lake as her final order. When Bedivere's task is complete, she passes away, finally obtaining the peace she had long sought.
Last Episode (Réalta Nua)
In the Réalta Nua version, an extended epilogue to this route can be unlocked after completing all three routes.
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.
- Forest of no return: On Day 3, if Shirou decides not to participate in Holy Grail War, two of his Command Spells are removed by Kirei. Exiting the church, Shirou uses his last Command Spell to abolish his contract with Saber, who leaves to find a new Master. Unfortunately on his way home, Shirou encounters Illya and Berserker. Shirou is torn apart by Berserker before Illya proceeds to curse him so that he cannot die or lose consciousness unless his head is destroyed, and then takes his head so that she can torture him indefinitely.
- Girl rhapsody: On Day 3, if Shirou decides to run from Berserker while he's fighting Saber, he takes Rin to run to a safer populated area under belief he can save Saber if Berserker chases after them. However, while running, Rin is fatally wounded by Berserker; with her final words Rin tells Shirou to go to the church. Running to the church, Shirou is severely wounded by Berserker, and surprised by his survival, Illya decides to torture him in Kiritisugu's place. With his final thoughts, Shirou thinks only about Saber and Rin's safety.
- Texture: On Day 4, if Shirou decides to decline Rin's proposal, Rin leaves the Emiya household with dismay. On the next day at school in the afternoon, Rin assaults Shirou for being a Master when there no more people at school. Shirou runs for his life but gets hit with a Gandr shot and is infected with a debilitating cold. Rin places her fingers on Shirou's neck and the screen fades out. The next day, Shirou wakes up not having any recollection on what happened yesterday or anything related to Saber, the Holy Grail War or Rin. This ending is part of the Unlimited Blade Works route, and as such is listed as bad end number 16 for the purposes of collecting all Tiger Stamps.
- Missing Ariadne: On Day 6, if Shirou decides to attack the Master at Ryuudo Temple, he and Saber go to the temple. There Saber senses the presence of a Servant in the temple, but before they can enter, Shirou goes under the effect of a transference spell. Saber tries to save him, but she is attacked by Rider. Shirou ends being transferred inside the temple grounds, where Caster cuts off his left arm for his Command Spells.
- Melty Blood: On Day 9, if Shirou decides to attack Shinji when Rider is present, she stabs him in the neck. Bleeding profusely, Shirou is then drained of his remaining blood by Rider.
- Rafflesia umbrella: On Day 9, if Shirou decides not to use a Command Spell to summon Saber to save himself after Rider kicked him out the window, he fatally lands on the ground. On the ground, swords begin to burst forth from his body resulting in his death.
- Nutcracker doll: On Day 10, if Shirou doesn't follow after Saber during her battle with Rider, he later finds her unconscious on the rooftop. After bringing her back to the house, Rin treats her and tells Shirou Saber is dangerously low on magical energy and is going to disappear soon if it's not resupplied. Devastated, Shirou goes to the park and starts pondering whether he should allow Saber to feed on other people to restore her magical energy, when he is suddenly found and captured by Illya, who immobilizes him with a spell, takes him to her castle and then transfers his mind to a new container.
- Dress of heaven: On Day 11, if Shirou agrees to be Illya's servant, he suddenly finds himself unable to use his body. Illya then calls in Sella and Leysritt to help her transfer Shirou's mind to a new container.
- Night without dawn: On Day 11, if Shirou doesn't stop Saber with a Command Spell, she uses a weak Excalibur that fails to kill Berserker. Berserker then kills Saber before she fades away, and cuts off Shirou's legs as Ilya commands. Before his consciousness fades, Shirou notices Rin's corpse, having been crushed by Berserker.
- Walpurgis night: On Day 13, if Shirou lets Saber fight Caster alone, his Command Spell soon disappears. A pained Saber soon enters the house, and a concerned Shirou, despite Rin's warning, goes to her. However, Saber kills Shirou, who dies wondering why she killed him.
- Witch's mark: On Day 13, if Shirou doesn't tell Saber not to attack Caster, she is struck by Rule Breaker. Caster then commands Saber to kill Shirou, whose last vision is of her crying.
- One end: On Day 14, if Shirou doesn't get up when Gilgamesh approaches Saber, he dies of his wound inflicted by Merodach.
- Time limit: On Day 15, if Shirou decides not to go down into the church's basement, he goes home to a upset Saber. She soon proposes that they cooperate with Lancer in order to defeat Gilgamesh. However, Kirei soon arrives at the house, wishing to speak with Shirou. Saber recognizes him as a Master from the previous war and wants Shirou to stay away, but she reluctantly lets the two speak alone. Outside, Shirou notices the Boundary Field has gone off, which Kirei confirms as Lancer's doing, who Saber went to fight. Shirou is then fatally stabbed from behind, as he stares at a mutilated body dropped by Kirei earlier.
- That which cannot be changed: On Day 15, if Shirou failed to get Saber's affection score to a certain level, she gives into Kirei's temptations and kills Shirou. Saber quickly becomes horrified by her own actions, Kirei then gives her the Holy Grail, who tells her lamentations make her worthy of receiving it.
- Holy Grail completed: On Day 15, if Shirou doesn't return Avalon to Saber, he is consumed by the contents of the Grail.
Anime original scenes
|Fate • Unlimited Blade Works • Heaven's Feel|
Arcueid • Ciel
Akiha • Hisui • Kohaku