The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III
This summary contains spoilers for The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III
Chapter 3 - Pulse of Steel
June came, filled with light showers and the early signs of summer.
The students of Class VII were surprised to find they had two new members: Ash and Musse had transferred from their respective classes into Special Operations.
The transfer was Principal Aurelia's decision--a way to both discipline two especially unruly students and shore up the numbers in the school's smallest class.
During their free day, Rean was pleasantly surprised to have two familiar faces show up in Leeves.
His sister, Elise, who had come to deliver some letters, and George, one of Rean's upperclassmen from the main campus.
While catching up with George, Rean learned more about the Gnomes and deduced the name they now went by...
...the Black Workshop.
Under that name, the Gnomes helped Chancellor Osborne steal the Phantasmal Blaze Plan from Ouroboros during the civil war.
However, they were still shrouded in mystery. So much so, that Rean and the others were unable to infer much else about them.
Later that evening, Rean returned to his room and read the letters Elise had delivered.
The first was from Rean's swordsmanship teacher, Master Ka-fai, who had written some inspirational words to his final student.
The other was from Teo, Rean's adoptive father.
He wrote to explain the shared past between himself and Rean's biological father, Osborne.
The next day, new Class VII went through their usual trials in Einhel Keep with their new roster. Rean was pleased to see his students working well together.
During the briefing afterward, it was announced their next field exercises would take place in the Lamare province. They would cover two cities and the Juno Naval Fortress.
Before they knew it, their departure date had arrived, and the branch campus was on their way to Lamare.
As soon as they reached their camp, Class VII departed for the naval fortress to meet with the local leadership.
There, they spoke with Wallace Bardias, the head of the Unified Regions Army.
Known as the Black Whirlwind, he had served as Aurelia's right hand man during both the civil war and the Northern War, and was renowned for his spearmanship.
Class VII started their field exercises on the outskirts of Ordis, taking care of requests along the way.
As they were investigating, they confronted a group of mysterious jaegers, but their foes had backup and Class VII soon found themselves surrounded.
It was in that moment that Jusis and Millium of the old Class VII rode in to their rescue, driving the jaegers back.
The two both happened to be in Ordis at the same time--Jusis for the Imperial Provincial Council and Millium for an Intelligence Division mission.
Rean and his students thanked their saviors and departed, heading to Raquel to further investigate the jaeger corps' movements.
After completing their business in Raquel, they left to investigate Rock Patio to the south.
There, they witnessed the purple jaegers they had come across before in the midst of a battle with another jaeger corps known as Nidhoggr.
As the purple jaegers withdrew, the Nidhoggr squad turned their focus on Class VII. Outnumbered and surrounded again, Rean was prepared to call Valimar to even the odds...
To his surprise, however, they were rescued by a timely intervention from Sara, the old Class VII's homeroom instructor, and Angelica, another of Rean's upperclassmen.
Thanks to their ambush, the jaegers quickly withdrew.
Since Rean's graduation, Sara had returned to her duties as a bracer and had recently been tracking suspicious jaeger movements.
Angelica, meanwhile, explained that she had come to Ordis to participate in the Imperial Provincial Council as the representative of House Rogner.
That evening, Rean returned to Raquel with Sara and Angelica to gather more info on the two jaeger groups.
There, they happened to meet with Claire, and together, they were able to determine all the various jaeger movements at play in Lamare.
It turned out Nidhoggr and the mysterious purple jaegers weren't the only corps active in the area.
The Red Constellation--who had connections with Ouroboros--and Zephyr--hired by an unknown party--were there as well.
Further, as a result of their info gathering, they were able to determine that the purple jeagers were the remnants of the Northern Jaegers.
They were all citizens of North Ambria, which had been annexed by Erebonia in the Northern War.
The next day came and Class VII continued with their Special Ops missions. In the middle of their requests, Rean received a call from Jusis.
He told him that Millium had left to chase a lead the previous night and still hadn't returned. Despite a number of attempts to contact her, she couldn't be reached.
Rean and his students began asking around about Millium's whereabouts and discovered she had set out for Bryonia Island.
They rented a small boat and headed to the island, hoping to pick up her trail. There, they were struck by the various ruins that dotted the island.
Thanks to the pendant Emma gave Rean, they were able to open the way and the Sol Shrine revealed itself before them.
Rean preemptively called Valimar to the island, just to be safe, and then he and Class VII ventured into the shrine.
As they descended into its depths, they found the Stahlritter and another Aion there waiting for them. Millium was there with them--as their captive.
Class VII confronted the three knights, but after their battle, the Stahlritter initiated their Radiant Star Formation, powering themselves up significantly.
Just as they were prepred to strike, a knight clad in silvery armor suddenly appeared. She was Ouroboros' Seventh Anguis, Arianrhod, the Steel Maiden.
Her very presence was enough to push Rean to immediately call Valimar down to them.
Unfortunately, before he could board his Divine Knight, the Aion powered on and pinned Valimar in place.
His other options exhausted, Rean had no choice but to call upon his power. With his full strength unleashed, he and Arianrhod faced off one-on-one.
Rean gave the battle his all, but it wasn't long before his power began to run loose. He let out a cry as he slumped down.
His students rushed forward to defend him, and in response, Arianrhod held her lance skyward, preparing to bring it crashing down on them.
Before she could, however, a hawk swooped down, flying by the knights.
Amid the confusion, a tall young man leapt over Class VII, landing between the two groups.
He was Gaius Worzel, the last member of the old Class VII to make an appearance. With lance in hand, he calmly faced the Stahlritter and their leader.
Sensing there was something different about Gaius, Arianrhod called for her knights and the Aion to retreat.
Before he and the others could celebrate their victory, Rean turned and called out to someone. A person who had been watching their fight the whole time.
Siegfried emerged from the shadows. However, he refused to answer any of Rean's questions, instead calling up a teleportation circle and vanishing.
Though they were left with many questions, the group was glad that Millium was safe and that they had met up with Gaius. Their task complete, they returned to Ordis.
On the third day of field exercises, the quiet of dawn was broken by the thundering sound of cannon fire.
As the instructors quickly gave orders to the panicking students, Lechter made an urgent visit to let them know what had happened.
With Ouroboros' assistance, the purple jaegers had stolen four railway cannons and were firing on Ordis.
Lechter then presented Rean with his orders to resolve the situation. Due to the possibility of the Aion reappearing, Rean told the new Class VII to remain on standby at the camp.
He then joined with Gaius and the others, and together, they headed to where the cannons had been moved.
After fighting their way through multiple Northern Jaeger squads, they arrived at the cannons...
...only to be confronted by Shirley and a company of jaegers from the Red Constellation. McBurn and Campanella were there as well.
Fortunately, Agate, Toval, and Brigadier General Wallace arrived to help, as did members of the branch campus' Combat Tactics class.
Realizing it was all just a diversion and the Northern Jaegers' true target was Juno Naval Fortress, Rean's group quickly made their way there by bike.
They were joined by the new Class VII, but the fortress had already fallen. Its banners had been changed and Arianrhod stood atop it, the Aion looming above.
To make things worse, Rean's group was stopped at the door by Zephyr and Azure Seigfried. They claimed they were there to fight Ouroboros and wouldn't let anyone else take their prey.
It was then that Principal Aurelia arrived and convinced Rutger that this fight belonged to her. Leaving things to her and Rean's group, the Jaeger King stepped aside.
From there, Rean and his allies split into two groups in order to properly navigate their way through the fortress.
As they worked together to unlock the path for each other and climb to the top, they fought off the numerous archaisms that filled the fortress' halls.
The main group, led by Rean, was the first to arrive at the roof.
A thick fog settled over the area as Arianrhod removed her helmet and readied her lance. Aurelia smiled, her excitement at the prospect of the impending battle rising.
Electricity could be felt in the air as their battle began.
The Stahlritter relentlessly rained blow after blow down upon them, but Aurelia and Class VII responded for each strike.
As the battle met its end, both sides fells to their knees in exhaustion. Even Aurelia was winded. Even so, she had proven herself against the Steel Maiden in combat.
Her role in the fight complete, she sheathed her sword. The only battle remaining was for Rean--a clash between Divine Knight and Aion.
Rean summoned Valimar, and Ash and Musse joined him in their Panzer Soldats.
During the battle, the Aion used its ability to manipulate space to break Valimar's tachi. As if in response, everyone's ARCUSes begain glowing...
Rean was then able to channel the power of his bonds with everyone into the broken tachi to temporarily restore the blade and defeat the Aion.
After the battle, Rean and the others questioned the defeated knights about Ouroboros' experiments and what their ultimate goal was.
Rather than answering, Arianrhod simply raised her hand and called a name--Argreion.
A giant silver figure appeared before them, obscured by the mist. It brandished its colossal lance and pierced the defeated Aion through, utterly destroying it.
'Each experiment has borne fruit... We must reach a decision before much longer.'
With those parting words, Arianrhod vanished with Argreion, followed by her three knights.
Brigadier General Wallace returned to the fortress after resolving things in the canyon, and under his command, the chaotic situation was quickly brought under control.
That evening, the Imperial Provincial Council held a meeting.
Under Jusis and Aurelia's watchful eyes, the nobles present began voting on who would be the successor to the title of Duke Cayenne.
It was decided that it would be the former duke's niece--Lady Mildine Juzalith de Cayenne. The green-haired young woman then led the council in discussing issues regarding the government.
The next day, Rean and his students bid their farewells to the friends and allies who had come to see them off.
They discussed Arianrhod's Divine Knight and her parting words, agreeing that now, more than ever, they needed to prepare for what lay ahead.
Looking forward to the day when old Class VII could finally fulfill their promise to each other, Rean stepped aboard the train and departed Lamare.