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The episode summaries for The Blood-Soaked Empress, the third story-arc in Dimitri Chronicles: Flames of Courage. Following the events of Red Roses, Black Hearts, this arc follows Team Prinus in their all-out confrontation with the two deadliest organizations of the Soumercian desert before their time runs out!

Content © to Chamesthehero/Lolcraft98/ProLuxray. In order of the usernames on Sonic Fanon Wiki, deviantART, and Youtube, respectively.

Episode Summaries

Episode Twenty-Five: The Blood-Soaked Empress

The episode commences in an unfamiliar setting. In a place where a fouls stench is prominent and sand dripped from the ceilings, some annals of history regarding the Inferno Bandits gathered by the Brotherhood of Thieves through several unconventional means are read by four familiar individuals... _____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode then narrates the following:

The history of the Sand Empire is described as its most memorable moments of its war-plagued history come to mind. The first users of Rainbow Dust as weapons, the empire hundreds of years ago was consisted of the entire red desert of the Scorched Dunes. The strongest people in the desert, this civilization of spotted-hyenas flourished through complete dominance over other civilizations.

However, it seems as if a mysterious incident happened back for it to have sunk so low; this is attributed to a sudden shortage of Rainbow Dust that made them lose status and power throughout the desert. With the capital defenseless, the other towns rebelled. In the blink of an eye, years of conquest were left behind as the capital was raided and left in shambles and the other towns became civilizations of their own.

Aside from the Sand Empire, the only civilization of that time that survived is Red Rose Town. _____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes a transition to many hours before.

In Red Rose Town, the Blood Thorn Tournament is becoming heated. Similar to Station Square's fighting tournament, the whole stadium was packed by individuals eager to see the contestants fight. Although this scene is reminiscent of the finals of Titan Smashing, there are some key visual differences...

In the crowd, Maxwell could be seen with Tobias and Siam. Since he was too young, the child was unable to participate in the tournament and was a little bummed out. No one he asked about the Brotherhood of Thieves knew anything he did not already know. Instead, he was looking forward to watch the tournament!

While Siam had decided to go, Garnet on the other hand mentioned that she discourages violence and prefers to stay and clean the bar alone. While Tobias is disappointed she is not present with him, Siam engages in a hearty conversation with the womanizer that keeps both of them busy with each other. Tobias could not take Garnet off his thoughts, however. He genuinely wanted to have her alongside him...

The crowd cheers as Ramonna, the champion of Station Square, enters the arena waving and grinning. The voluptuous female hedgehog is always eager to fight foes from outside her hometown.

While Dimitri is in the changing room waiting with the other contestants, he was asking around information about the Brotherhood of Thieves to other fighters, only to be harassed by the tougher-looking ones. He takes a deep breath and decides to ignore the remarks, planning onto focusing on watching Ramonna. He was wearing rags that masked his appearance. Despite saving the town, he wished to conceal his identity.

As other contestants did make inappropriate comments about Ramonna's figure, a provoked Dimitri in the changing secretly uses his telekinesis to bump their heads with each other. That would be his little revenge.

Ramonna's opponent, aware of her abnormal strength, carefully plans his position in the other end of the arena, accordingly. Looking at her opponent from afar, the hedgehog enters her battle stance.

"Your strength is somethin' else, but you cannot hit what you cannot reach. That is such an obvious weakness... I pity those who were defeated by you before, lady. I am your downfall."

Ramonna's blood starts boiling a little as she starts to grin...

"Hah, you sure talk big... You think I'm letting you off so easily after that?"


The episode makes a transition to some moments later.

Unsurprisingly, Ramonna defeated her opponent with ease, though her pummeling was intentionally more vicious. With a deadly blow to his stomach, she punched him so hard he went flying from the arena. The crowd roars in excitement! On the other hand, the hedgehog starts panting as if she had fought for hours on end without a break. To those that had seen her fight before, her movements were sloppier than usual...

Meanwhile, it would be around this time Dimitri would have mild headaches. Normally, he would only have them if he overexerted his telekinetic powers, but this was not the case. He tries to shrug it off as Ramonna exits the stage and goes to the back-room. She passes by him and merely gives him a high-five.

In a low, but clearly taunting voice, Ramonna gets close to the Prinus echidna's ear but does not face him.

"Scared yet?"

Similarly, Dimitri does not look at her directly and walks past her.

"Not quite."

The episode concludes itself as the announcer calls out for two more contestants: one of them called Green Thunder. Upon hearing the pseudonym, Dimitri leaves for the arena as the crowd cheers him on.

Episode Twenty-Six: The Blood-Soaked Empress II

The episode commences continuing the narration from the previous one..

The Sand Empire's political structure lasted for generations and was part of an ancient tradition that required the strongest sibling out of the imperial bloodline to rule over all. The current emperor was required to have over twelve descendants that would have to fight each other to the death in a battle royal for everyone in the empire to watch. This would happen when the youngest child becomes eleven.

While the winner became the emperor and the empire rejoiced, among these imperials, the birth of the youngest child is never a date for celebration. These ones are called the blood-soaked imperials.

The latest blood-soaked imperial, is, of course, named Zahra. ____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes another transition.

With the alias of Green Thunder, a name chosen by Maxwell, Dimitri enters the arena. This violent culture of modern society never quite appealed to him as much as it did to Ramonna... He never fought someone with that amount of people watching... Prinus echidnas fought for survival, not entertainment. He wonders if his best friend has to deal with this pressure every time she enters an arena.

Meanwhile, in the audience, Maxwell cheered for his friend. As if within a blink of an eye, someone else he does not know sits beside him and watches the fight with him. This mouse, cool-looking and wearing piercing, is very critical of the fighters and strikes a conversation with the nine-year old boy.

This mouse, however, was none other than Saphie the Swift!

Saphie begins commenting with Maxwell about the fights. She is skeptical about Green Thunder's weird attire and flashy turquoise powers but the nine-year old refrains from revealing Dimitri's identity directly. Saphie's manipulation and play with words, on the other hand, trick Maxwell, confirming her doubts.

With a head tilt, she signals someone else in the crowd on the opposite end of the stadium before returning to comment about Green Thunder's lackluster performance... _____________________________________________________________________________________

Under normal circumstances, Dimitri would have been fine. However, his headache really starts to hurt as he tries to summon his telekinesis. Like Ramonna, his movements were sluggish and it was difficult maintaining his balance. This made his battle draw out longer than Maxwell, Tobias, and Ramonna expected, but he still won nonetheless through enough effort to dodge skull-shattering attacks.

Dimitri exits the arena and sits down alone, attempting to stabilize his sense of balance. He looks at Ramonna and asks her if she is feeling bad or anything, but the tough hedgehog interprets his concerns as trash-talking and refuses to acknowledge her current condition. She says it is nothing she cannot handle and reminds him that, should they win the next round, they are going to face each other in the brackets!

Meanwhile, as she was grabbing a drink, Ramonna instinctively senses there is someone else observing her from somewhere. Without thinking too hard, the hedgehog takes a sip of the energy drink as she sees a fellow contestant walk past her. Ramonna detected an oddly familiar scent from them.

The episode concludes itself as the next fighter enters the arena...

Episode Twenty-Seven: The Blood-Soaked Empress III

The episode commences continuing the narration from the previous one...

As the narration is being read, a flashback occurs:

In the heart of the Sand Empire, little Zahra was born in her stone palace. Her relations with her eleven older siblings were not bad, but merely non-existent. As per tradition, her very existence was the harbinger of the future imperial slaughter the people named the battle royale, though she was not aware of this. Without knowing the reason she was alone, she walked a lonely path in her childhood.

The blood-soaked imperial would often escape her palace to meet her people in secrecy. Zahra witnessed the opposite of what she saw within the palace's stone walls: hungry, pauper hyenas in the streets struggling to survive under the scorching red sun of the desert. It was at that moment Zahra took it upon herself to steal some of the excess food from her gluttonous siblings to share them with the ones that needed more...

Unlike at home, Zahra was beloved by her people and gained their trust. _____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode then makes a transition.

The announcer calls upon Disaster, a newcomer to the Blood Thorn Tournament. Wearing Yurashian ninja-like clothing that concealed her true identity, the public still could notice her elegance and roared in cheer. What the public were more interested about, including Maxwell and Saphie, was the fact the fighter held two uncharacteristically dual giant-sized balls with chains on each hand.

Given her weapons giant spiked balls presumably made of iron, each ball would weigh even more than ton each... If Team Prinus did not know any better, perhaps they would think the only one capable of wielding such gigantic weapons in that whole desert was Ramonna. Disaster, however, was dragging the balls instead of outright lifting them, so people naturally questioned her ability to throw them around.

As the announcer lets the fight start, her opponent tries to close in and attempt to strike her, but he was greeted by a giant ball of iron thrown at him and barely hitting him. Disaster immediately pulls the chained ball and, utilizing the momentum gained, throws it again. She misses, but the sheer impact of the ball creates a violent shock-wave and crushes the ground beneath her. Everyone around was speechless.

The opponent, genuinely scared, resigned from the fight before Disaster could do anything else. _____________________________________________________________________________________

In the crowd, Maxwell was thrilled by Disaster's strength, but Saphie commented about her most glaring weakness: her speed. She notes she herself could run dozens of circles around the mysterious fighter. Maxwell ponders for a little bit and agrees, but says that if the ball manages to get them, they would have a one-way ticket to the hospital. They both nod simultaneously in agreement.

Dimitri, Maxwell, Ramonna, and Tobias all began to sweat almost at the same time. Meanwhile, as did the female hedgehog, Dimitri started to notice he was being watched from somewhere. Despite being a telekinetic echidna, he is no oracle, but he had a strange instinctive feeling that made adrenaline rush through his veins. He immediately goes to Ramonna to discuss this with her.

At this point, the fervent desire of battling Disaster overtook Ramonna. She was shivering with excitement, though she was strangely ill and looked visibly tired. While the male echidna is too weak to argue back, Ramonna forgets the entire reasoning behind participating in the tournament in the first place...

The episode concludes itself as both Disaster and her are called to the arena...

Episode Twenty-Eight: The Blood-Soaked Empress IV

The episode commences continuing the narration from the previous one...

As the narration is being read, a flashback occurs:

In the Sand Empire, there was one hyena that was different from others. She never knew her parents who perished in a fire when she was very little. She does not even remember she was the one that instigated the fire while she was amusing her with red-colored Rainbow Dust. Playing with fire was an unfortunate mistake. No one really knows if her emotional detachment originated from there or not.

She was the only hyena that never laughed once in her life.

What the emotionless hyena remembers, however, is that it was during a fire that she first met one of the heirs to the throne of the empire, Zahra. The laughing latter showed compassion towards the hyena and, considering how she had nowhere to go, took her in and became inseparable.

Yes, it was Zahra that named the nameless hyena Ember. _____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes a transition to the present.

The Blood Thorn Tournament finally gets into its most anticipated fight: Ramonna versus Disaster. The champion of Station Square against the almighty challenger; the unstoppable force meets the immovable object. The whole crowd is uncontrollable, cheering wildly for both of them under the red hot sun!

Maxwell comments that he is confident his friend will win, but Saphie has her doubts. Ramonna's speed and reflexes was unnaturally hindered and she is sweating almost uncontrollably, making her wonder if the female hedgehog is actually in pain for some odd reason. Maxwell, Tobias, and Dimitri were the same as Ramonna, even though the nine-year old did not notice this sudden fatigue in loss in strength...

In the arena, panting, Ramonna cracks her knuckles and enters her battle-stance. From up close, the female hedgehog starts noticing that her opponent looks awfully familiar with someone else she knows, but the sheer absurdity of the end-result of her deductive reasoning made her shrug it off and smirks:

"Heh, aren't you a tough one? Show me what you can do! Do not dare disappoint me!"

Disaster has her eyes fixated on her opponent and remains silent, entering her own battle stance. The announcer rings a bell and starts the long-awaited clash between the two beautiful, powerful ladies! _____________________________________________________________________________________

Meanwhile, as much as Dimitri wants to see Ramonna right, he asserts to himself something is not right. Like his friend, he was barely able to stand up straight and leaned against a wall for balance. As his head is spinning, he convinces himself that he must have been injected some sort of poison, though he cannot deduce who might be the hypothetical culprit. He only knows that he will not remain conscious for long...

Pressing himself against the wall, the Prinus echidna decides to take a walk. It is only then he starts overhearing some familiar, though unwelcoming voices coming straight from the other room... _____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes a transition to the battle.

Ramonna charges towards the opponent fearlessly. Judging by how slow Disaster was in previous fights, the hedgehog is confident that she can blitz her, even though her speed is strangely hindered. Her opponent, immobile, seems concentrated and awaits for the athlete to close in on her at a certain radius. Once Ramonna gets close, Disaster throws one of the balls towards Ramonna, who blocks it with her arm.

Disaster had purposefully thrown this ball slowly, for in the next moment, she surprises Ramonna and everyone present by doing jumping and flipping forward, slamming the two iron balls with impressive speed at the hedgehog.

Ramonna is forced to block the attack with both hands as the ground beneath her cracks at the impact. The whole audience goes wild as the hedgehog grabs the two iron spheres and throws them at opposite directions, making Disaster's chained arms stick out accordingly and leave her open. Not wasting time, the athlete takes the opportunity to punch Disaster straight on her chest, sending her flying backwards.

As Disaster regains composure and does not seem hurt at all, Ramonna starts to pant heavily as her head starts to spin. Yet, she keeps a grinning expression, clearly excited and determined to continue fighting.

The hedgehog's opponent remains silent but reveals her ultimate trump card. She flicks a button on both chains attached to her arms and yellow and indigo Rainbow Dust starts flowing within them, making the iron balls glow a respective color each. One of them gains an appearance of a ball covered in black mist, gaining darkness-related properties while the other one gains yellow sparks, gaining electricity-related properties.

With Disaster wielding two iron balls with elemental properties each, everyone around is at awe. Ramonna feels a little disturbed since blocking them will be dangerous. Disaster starts throwing the chained balls at the hedgehog at astounding speeds, forcing the latter to dodge frantically as she tries to approach her opponent to no avail. If she does not end the battle quick, things would be troublesome...

It is too late. Ramonna's strength on her legs simply fades away and she meets an iron ball straight between her eyes, sending her backwards. Not losing any momentum, Disaster pulls the iron ball and, flipping forward once more, slams the two of her chained balls onto Ramonna successfully.

This time, the impact was so great it forced the hedgehog onto the ground before she was consumed in a powerful elemental explosion of darkness and electricity!

The audience roars as the judge reveals that Ramonna is unconscious and it is Disaster's victory. _____________________________________________________________________________________

Meanwhile, Dimitri continues to eavesdrop the two familiar individuals.

One of them, Zahra, states that Hourglass should get rid of the disturbances that day. Hourglass, in his usual trembling voice, mentions that his brotherhood is already scattered around the stadium and should begin their plans to apprehend and kill their targets soon; they had received an unexpected help, for Team Prinus and Tobias had been poisoned by someone that wants to join the Brotherhood of Thieves.

It becomes clear as day Dimitri knew who they were talking about.

Zahra asks Hourglass why was he panting so much. He replies that he hates being around people since it gives him anxiety; standing in this stadium was only because she ordered him to. The hyena laughs and pats him on the back strongly, retorting that money truly was his only friend...

The echidna retreated slowly, heading towards the exit to tell the others what is going on, but is intercepted by a red-eyed caracal and is knocked out unconscious. _____________________________________________________________________________________

Among the audience, Tobias and Maxwell lose strength to stand up and go and help Ramonna. Saphie, grinning and looking at Maxwell, apologizes in a sarcastic demeanor and mentions that they are too slow before she knocks the nine-year old and the womanizer out cold and pulls them away.

"Good grief, fiiiiiinally. I am gonna tell big bro all about this annoying kid!"

Noticing the Brotherhood of Thieves' symbol on Saphie's outfit as she kidnaps Tobias and Maxwell, Siam screams and everyone near starts to panic as well.

The episode concludes itself as chaos unfolds in the stadium. Disaster, on the ring, also picks up an unconscious Ramonna up and flees, presumably where Saphie is going too...

Episode Twenty-Nine: The Blood-Soaked Empress V

The episode commences continuing the narration from the previous one...

As the narration is being read, a flashback occurs...

The blood-soaked imperial has since become the master of Ember, ordering her around freely. Indeed, the emotionless hyena became but her shadow, like a machine that followed whatever inputs her master gave. Ember never shared any enthusiasm for becoming independent and both, who had no friends before, did not understand it was not a full-fledged healthy relationship.

Zahra always saw poverty around her empire and corruption among her siblings. She knew that, should they succeed her father's status, the horrible situation of Sand Empire would never change. Hence, she would go to her palace's great library and read upon her people's history so she, when became empress, would not make the same mistakes of her antecedents. However, a question lingered in her mind...

"How is someone made an emperor in this warrior-like community?" _____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes a transition back to the present.

Team Prinus sleeps somewhere that appeared to be Red Rose Town's sewers, if the horrid stench and enclosed spaces were any indication. Sand slowly dripped from the stone ceilings from overground and smooth landed on the sewer water that followed a trail that made it look like a genuine river flowing under the desert. All members of the group, including Tobias, were inside jailed cells.

The group, however, was separated. Dimitri is with Tobias on one end of the sewers while Ramonna and Maxwell resided on the opposite end. The former group is the first to awaken and wonder what was going on and where were they while the latter slept for a little more. _____________________________________________________________________________________

Dimitri Harmonia Prinus has a terrible headache and Tobias, with a cowardly demeanor, impatiently demands the Prinus echidna information on how to get out, who did all of this, and why. The sixteen-year old said he was asking too many questions and should remain quiet. If it were not for the Prinus echidna's now visible turquoise aura, Tobias would have undoubtedly fought back.

Upon meditation and pondering about what he saw before he was knocked out, Dimitri comes up with the following conclusions: they were kidnapped by the Brotherhood of Thieves who were working together with the Inferno Bandits and were drugged by someone that clearly empathized with those groups. The weird part about all of this is that the Brotherhood of Thieves could have clearly taken the opportunity to finish them off swiftly as they slept...

"Yeah, okay, whatever you say. Still, what kind of nutjob would want to turn us in, anyway?"

"You'd be surprised, but I'm almost certain the sympathizer is Garnet."

Immediately, Tobias threw himself towards a surprised Dimitri and held his fist. The womanizer, appalled with his partner's answer and clearly shaking with anger, only did not punch the sixteen-year old because the latter stopped him at the last moment with his telekinesis. Tobias began to scream at him, saying that the one he loves would never do something like that.

Dimitri sends him off the other wall and begins explaining his reasoning.

"Listen to me for a moment. There was something in her drink that made us feel headaches until we passed out. Did you not wonder why she looked particularly appalled when we mentioned her brother who presumably joined this brotherhood and the organization itself when Maxwell showed us their insignia?"

"That is so little to basis such a bold claim you are not making sense, you idiot. What do you know, anyway? She is practically the owner of the business, is surrounded by friends, and earns a lot of money doing so! Why would she ever want to leave all of that in order to become a petty thief on the streets?"

"Did you ever consider, perhaps, that she is lonely?"

Tobias' furious expression changes as Dimitri continues...

"Yes, even Maxwell noticed her hollow eyes and smile during her job; Ramonna dealt with people like that. She is an orphan that lost contact with her brother, and she clearly hates her adoptive father whom she apparently considers nothing more than a mere boss. You were there when she lost composure.

Look, it is no use fighting among ourselves by debating on whether we are in the right or in the wrong. What matters now is that we should regroup with the others and find the ones behind all of this. If we do, then our questions will be solved and we have a higher chance of saving everyone."

Tobias calms down and Dimitri releases him from his telekinetic hold. The womanizer fixes his hat and mentions how he is willing to get into the bottom of this to prove Garnet is not behind it all. The thieves stole his Psamathe, however, so Dimitri kind of had to fend everyone they encountered, while made him sigh at Tobias' request. Dimitri focuses on the jail's iron bars and bends them to create an exit.

The handsome womanizer, before entering through the exit, asks a question to Dimitri:

"Hey, so how would you know that she is lonely?"

Without looking at him, Dimitri responds after a pause.

"...I am the same. I, too, had a brother I lost. A real genius; someone I admired... Now, let's go."

Episode Twenty-Nine: The Blood-Soaked Empress VI

The episode commences continuing the narration from the previous one...

As the narration is being read, a flashback occurs...

After countless days that felt like weeks locked up in her palace's great library, Zahra discovered the meaning behind her title of "blood-soaked imperial": the battle royale every imperial was supposed to enter. This was the reason none of her siblings ever talked to her and she was neglected. Horrified, she also breaks down as she sees her dream of becoming empress fall apart right before her eyes.

Of course, all blood-soaked imperials were always the first ones to die. No sibling would ever create alliances with them in the battle-field as they were the weakest and youngest, never the most experienced. That was the evening before Zahra's twelfth birthday. Zahra, normally risible, remained silent and secluded herself from anyone except for Ember, who followed her without showing sympathy in her eyes.

After a large silence, Zahra's sudden laughter becomes an unnerving cackling.

"...Ehehehe.... Pfft. AHAHAHAHAHAHA!"

Ember tilts her head as she watches Zahra punching a destroyed brick wall, causing her hand to bleed.

"DARN IT! All of my ambition, all my effort, all the promises to help my people, the promises to keep them safe and make the empire great again!! Did they mean anything at all?!"

Ember remains silent as Zahra raises her bleeding palm and aims it at the scorching sunset...

"Ahhh... I just will not stand for it. Even if I am the youngest, even if I am the weakest, even if I cry, even if it hurts, even if it is dishonorable, even if it means going at war with my family and the world... I will take back what it is rightfully ours. I will become queen! Just watch me, Ember! HAHAHAHAHA!"

Whether it was the work of coincidence or fate, it does not matter. The night before Zahra became twelve, the so-called Darkest Day happened and covered the skies of the world with thundering clouds temporarily before vanishing completely. From that night on, before the battle royale, Zahra's life changed forever. _____________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes a transition to the present.

Ramonna and Maxwell finally wake up in Red Rose Town's sewers and took few moments to realize they were separated from Dimitri and Tobias. Neither of them freak out, but are merely curious how they got there and where the others are. Ramonna was still hurt from her fight with Disaster and limped. Maxwell asked her if she needed any help to get out, but she assures him this much is a piece of cake.

Ramonna bends cell's metal bars and creates an exit for them. Maxwell follows a limping Ramonna and, as she was about to lose balance, she helps her up. The female hedgehog merely sighed and pat him on the head as he shared his shoulder with her, even though they had different heights... _____________________________________________________________________________________

Dimitri and Tobias walk together silently, each lost in their own thoughts. As they suddenly hear strange whimpers coming from the other side of stone wall, the Prinus echidna suggests Tobias to get behind him so he could make them an entrance. Aiming his palm towards the wall, Dimitri summons his psychic energy to create a shiny orb on his hands and blast everything in front of him with ease, creating an opening.

Through the opening, a familiar male caracal could be seen holding a wounded Garnet, who wore Disaster's clothes except for the mask. The beautiful caracal had many bruises and that infuriated Tobias, who lashed out immediately at the male caracal and punched him across his face.

"N-No! Stop! Leave my older brother be!"

The male Mobian caracal, standing back up, screams at her.


Garnet's eyes begin to water as Tobias tries helping her. Ruby the Caracal starts to mumble how he knew that his leader made the wrong decision not to kill them while they had the chance. Dimitri asks him the whole meaning behind all of this and he starts explaining before Garnet begins to talk.

Apparently, Dimitri's suspicions were correct. Garnet wanted to join the Brotherhood of Thieves and poisoned Team Prinus and Tobias. The latter is awestruck by the confirmation of what he set out to disprove. However, as Garnet tries to explain that she merely did that to reunite with her brother, Ruby screams at her again and calls her a fool.

Ruby claims Garnet abandoned him when she was little. Instead of choosing to run away with him to join the Brotherhood of Thieves, she stayed behind with Siam. The female caracal exclaims that she was forced to stay, but he does not care. He had already replaced her with Saphie, who took the role of his younger sister. As the one he loves cries, Tobias becomes infuriated and claims Ruby is insane.

"The stacks of money I get as payment are thicker than blood."

Tobias takes a deep breath and turns to Garnet, wiping off her tears gently. The handsome echidna holds her hands and tells her that, even though she used him for her own ends and he might not be her older brother, he accepts her and believes she is different from the other girls he knew; she is the most amazing person he ever met. Garnet, vulnerable, is taken aback by his confession as is Ruby, who mocks him.

"Pfft... haha! How embarrassing: the womanizer of Red Rose Town confessing his love to someone else! Wow, you are seriously disgusting. What is your ulterior move this time?"


Ruby is quickly silenced by Tobias, who stands up and starts exclaiming his words.

"It is not an ulterior move! Only now I have realized the emptiness of my heart. It is not embarrassing at all! It does not matter who we are talking about!"

Tobias continues as everyone stares at him at awe.

"Because.... because... because... what is more what is more important than being right, more important than money, more important than fighting... Because what truly is most important in one's heart...

...ABOVE ALL...!! IS LOVE!!!"

After a short silence, a smirking Dimitri starts clapping. As he tells Tobias that the speech was well-spoken, Garnet's eyes make tears fall as she embraces the so-called womanizer of Red Rose Town who had a change of heart, and she pulls him for a kiss. Defeated, Siam quivers in anger and lunges towards them both with his daggers. Dimitri uses his telekinetic powers to stop him just in time and he slams him against a wall, knocking him out.

"There is no need for fighting anymore, for this battle has already been won."

As Dimitri slammed him, the entire sewer vibrated. _______________________________________________________________________________________

The episode then makes a transition.

Ramonna and Maxwell continue venturing through the sewers. It is awfully quiet, unnervingly so. As the hedgehog hears footsteps that are not their own, she first believes it must be Dimitri and Tobias.

As the footsteps become increasingly faster and closer, in a split second, Ramonna pulls Maxwell behind her and she suddenly gets stabbed on her left arm by an iron dagger. The white fox is shocked to see the blood pouring from his friend's arm as she falls to her knees; she did not yet recover from her fight with Garnet and now is wounded.

Maxwell instantly recognizes who attacked them: Saphie the Swift.

"Whaaaat, it missed? Big bro was right; not finishing them off earlier was a mistake! Damn!"

Maxwell gets in his battle stance, clearly willing to protect Ramonna.

"...Y-You! Apologize to Ramonna, Saphie! Leave us alone!" _______________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes another transition.

The speedsters, Maxwell and Saphie, clash with one another in a series of blindly fast attacks. While the mouse can utilize the Rainbow Dust bombs to gain an environmental advantage with absolute darkness, Maxwell's speed and reflexes are way out of Saphie's league as is his usage of Dimitri's insight gained through training.

As a last resort, Saphie tries to use her signature technique, the Swift Revenge, on the child and almost does so successfully as Maxwell is surprised. As she was about to slash Maxwell, Ramonna appears to grab the mouse by the face and slams her onto the ground. The mouse loses her strength as the hedgehog now grabs her by Saphie's blue scarf and pins her against the wall and starts to interrogate her.

Both the speedsters are surprised to witness Ramonna's resiliency as her left arm bleeds.

"...Speak. You have a lot to explain here, runt."

Ramonna and Maxwell then feel the sewer vibrate. Noticing the vibration came from the other side of the sewer, the hedgehog lets Saphie go to head there with the white fox. As Saphie was about to catch one of her daggers, Ramonna kicks it onto the sewage and tells the mouse to not follow them or else the thief will face severe consequences.

The episode concludes itself as Maxwell wraps his scarf around Ramonna's bleeding wound and takes off with her.

Episode Thirty: The Blood-Soaked Empress VII

The episode commences continuing the narration from the previous one...

As the final narration is being read, a flashback occurs...

Within the morning after the Darkest Day, the long-awaited battle royal would occur. All inhabitants of the decaying Sand Empire, without exception, were present in the stone Colosseum-like arena the capital had. It was the blood-soaked imperial's birthday; it would be the day the new heir to the throne would be chosen.

As the spectacle began, the crowd roared for their respective favorites as they entered the arena at different corners. The current emperor then gives his approval and the battle begins...

It would be around this time thick, dark smoke started to emerge from an uncharacteristically stoic Zahra. Some of her siblings quickly caught on that something was wrong with her, but many others did not; the siblings desired to target the blood-soaked imperial first since she was an easy target.

An unfortunate mistake, for when they get caught up in the smoke, it suddenly solidifies and crushes them. The memory that everyone present would not forget is that of Zahra executing each and every single sibling she had with the same horrifying method. The last remaining sibling, quicker than the rest, did manage to throw a dagger and incapacitate her eye, but all perished in the end.

As the crowd was silent but awestruck by fear, Zahra, covered in the blood of her siblings, wipes it off her white hair and grins, begins making a speech; a speech that mentions that her power is not meant to harm her people but bring the empire back to its former glory. The crowd cheered for her; first, it was out of fear of what they saw her do. It would then be because of her charisma and goals...

According to the text, those who would join her army against the outside world were the Children of the Sand, but more vulgarly known throughout the rest of the world as the Inferno Bandits. _______________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes a transition to an hour before the narration was read.

Dimitri, Tobias, and Garnet eventually meet up with Ramonna and Maxwell in a hearty reunion. They exchange the information they got and come into the conclusion to get into the bottom of things. Dimitri recalls that he saw the leader of the Brotherhood of Thieves and the Inferno Bandits together, so perhaps they might be working together in the grand scale of things and investigation should begin right away.

Most notably, Tobias and Garnet hold hand together as they walk together through the sewer. When it is pointed out by Maxwell, the couple blushes and laughs, mutually satisfied by the turn of events. As such, a rather silent Ramonna walks closer to Dimitri, who does not seem to take the hint at all.

Maxwell suggests Dimitri to blow the whole place up with his psychic energy, but the Prinus echidna reminds him that doing so would make the entirety of the sewer collapse on them. Instead, they must be careful. It is then when Ramonna, leaning on a stone wall, accidentally activates a hidden lever that opens up a passage and reveals a similar four-wall room: the headquarters of the Brotherhood of Thieves.

The room, filled with dunes of Rainbow Dust among other jewelry, was filled with the echoes of the group's astonishment. As they looked around, they would start to hear someone calling out on the other end of the room.

"Saphie? I know you are aware of my social anxiety and you go great lengths to help me, but I-I said I did not want any food since I am not hungry now, okay?"

The group gets closer.

"W-Wait, Ruby? Is that you? Did you bring the item one of our clients requested a few weeks ago?"

Dimitri reaches out for the voice and identifies the individual as the lizard he saw before, Hourglass the Lizard. The lizard catches the coin he flipped on with his fingers and takes a deep breath.

"...Aw, crud." _______________________________________________________________________________________

The episode makes a transition.

Hourglass clings to the wall as he is surrounded by everyone without chances of escape... He begins saying that everyone should not get hasty, for he is not willing to get hurt or fight them at all. Instead, he suggested he could give them whatever piece of information they wanted.

He then aims his palm at a pile of Rainbow Dust and, after emitting a small flash of light, a book that was within that pile appears on his hand. His ability to steal nearby items is introduced!

The group is especially surprised about his power; perhaps such is the one that allowed him to become wanted by the Guardian Units of Nations and be one of the best thieves. The particular book he got contains the information the group collected over the months about Zahra's mysterious background and the Inferno Bandits. Dimitri uses his telekinesis to retrieve the book and he gives it to Ramonna to hold.

Hourglass, shivering, asks what happened to his brethren. Tobias, perhaps in an attempt to impress Garnet, replied that they were defeated by them. The lizard's heart skips a beat at the thought of his comrades being beaten down and, contradicting his previous behavior, clenches his fist.

"Oh no... no no no... It was not supposed to be like this. Zahra told us to s-s-s-slay the outsiders, b-b-but we just could not do it, you know? Death is just too f-f-f-freaky, but look at my organization now! This is all my fault. No, you would not understand... Hahaha... I do not... have a choice, it seems..."

Before Dimitri could ask what was he talking about, Hourglass throws two violet Rainbow Dust-filled bombs at them. A violet-colored gas comes out of it and fills the room instantaneously.

The group starts coughing uncontrollably, getting on their knees as Hourglass begins speaking...

"Ahhh... Violet... The color of a particular naturally-produced fear toxin from our desert... R-Ruby tells me that keeping contact with it worsens my anxiety... b-b-but fear is what keeps us alive, is it not? We always keep fears deep within our hearts, so... let me release them!"

Meanwhile, many protagonists start to wheeze as they start hallucinating their fears coming to life. Dimitri starts to reminiscence about the training he had with his grandfather that allowed him to become resistant to illusions, but he could not stop but stutter as he starts seeing the ghosts of Concordia, Daiku, and the rest of his people, crawling up to him with nightmarish faces and asking him the reason he let them die.

He is aware they are not real and just mere illusion, but... the Prinus echidna only returns to his senses moments later, after Ramonna broke through the room's wall to let the gas go out and Maxwell promptly defeats Hourglass. Dimitri takes a deep breath to regain composure as the others exchange looks.

At Dimitri's request, Ramonna starts reading the book Hourglass gave them. It becomes evident that the flashbacks surrounding Zahra of previous episodes was due to the hedgehog's current narration. Zahra's book ends when it reveals information about the location of the Inferno Bandits' hideout...

The episode concludes itself as the team is set to one place: the Sand Empire's capital.