Final Revolution

As far back as people can remember, there have been stories of duels at a remote academy in Japan. A chosen few vie with their blades and other weapons to win the right to reshape the world as they choose... to bring about their revolution. Most dismiss these stories as pure superstition or mythology.

Some at Ohtori Private Academy know better. Including the duellists themselves...

They say the duels were not always there. Only a century ago was the path to the Duelling Arena beneath the hovering Castle of Eternity discovered. A lone student, brought in as an outsider, solved the puzzle and unlocked the way... only to disappear once letters from a mysterious entity or entities called the Ends of the World began to come to certain students of Ohtori Academy. The first letters were accompanied by silver signet rings with the Ohtori rose seal set into their bands.

The letters said that they would find their true purpose in the duelling arena. Waiting for them was a single girl, just another high school student they had thought. She introduced herself as the Rose Bride, she who would be engaged to the Champion of the duels, whomever that may be. Further, she explained that the Champion would be the person who would reshape the world, creating revolution as he, or she, saw fit, upon the conclusion of the final duel.

After that, the duels became a part of the shadowed aspect of Ohtori Academy. None of the students save the duellists and the Rose Bride knew of the Duelling Arena behind the school in the forest that all students, save the Student Council, were forbidden to enter.

The duels occured every eight years, with new students vying for the right and power to bring revolution to the world. Each cycle of duels would approach the final duel, the one called 'Revolution', but the duel would not be held, stopped before that point. Some in the shadows spoke of a prophecy that had to be fulfilled before 'Revolution' would be fought, but even they did not know the entirety of this prophecy.

They say, forty-five years ago, a duellist disappeared. She walked into the final duel for that cycle, a step away from 'Revolution' the shadows say, but was never heard from again. Some say she found the prince she had been seeking for years, others say she died, and others yet say she still lives, but ended up in a different plane of existence. Whatever her fate, the story of her and the duels she fought provided the basis for the Shoujo Kakumei Utena (released as Revolutionary Girl Utena in America) anime and manga, alarmingly close to the events that occurred, despite the bizarre aspect they portray.

For twenty years, there was no duel. And then the cycle started again, this time with a different Rose Bride. No one knows why the change was made. This cycle also saw the rise of a particularly cruel duellist, willing to do anything in his power to achieve the duel called 'Revolution', even if it meant inflicting injury on his opponents. Of the original five duellists, two were injured enough to be forced into the hospital and out of the duels. Finally, his twin brother, another duellist, defeated him, but ended the duelling cycle saying that by judging his brother's worth, he had no worth of his own.

In the last cycle, sixteen years ago, the duels ended abruptly after the currently victorious duellist was discovered to be with child. Why the duels ended because of this is unknown. Yet it is said she died giving birth on Ohtori campus, the identity of the father not publicly known, and her name spoken of with scorn and dishonor.

Now the Ends of the World has selected another set of students at Ohtori Private Academy to be their chosen, their duellists, for the newest cycle of duels. As before, many of the duellists hail from the Ohtori Academy Student Council, yet there are more from outside its ranks than ever before.

Caught up in the intrigue that hovers around the rose signet rings like a heavy fog, the duellists are trapped in an unpredictable series of events never encountered before. Even the Ends of the World, usually unsettlingly omniscient, is at a loss to explain these happenings...

Who is the Dark Council? Who is this Power of Shadow heard of only in soft whispers? Who is the thirteenth duellist, the one who will bring all crashing down?

"None of us know who will be the Champion. None of us know what will happen next. All we know is that we're caught up in something way above our heads." --Eien Kiseki

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