Full summary of Berserk: The Flame Dragon Knight Novel
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- Berserk: Enryuu no Kishi (Flame Dragon Knight) was written by Fukami Makoto, a novelist and scriptwriter. It's written in rather simple Japanese, with some occasional archaisms, more sophisticated words and technical vocabulary fitting the fantasy world. The language is reminiscent of Berserk, though probably simpler.
- PROLOGUE General Kirsten of the Grand Dukedom of Grant comes to a guard tower where a heap of corpses lies. Rich, beautiful women are being killed in a gruesome way and then hanged around the castle town. He wants to investigate. It seems like a highborn person is the perpetrator. That's why he feels the need to investigate the murders in secret, as much as possible.
- CHAPTER 1 Grant is a nation inhabiting a volcanic island to the northeast of the mainland. Everybody there knows legends telling of a vicious dragon and a virgin who sacrificed herself to it for the sake of the country. The powerful Tudor Empire from the continent has been trying to conquer the island since 14 years ago. Right now, in the Fire Dragon's Nest, the country's most important fortress, Grunbeld Arkvist has been serving as the commander for ten years. Grunbeld's father had died in battle long ago, and his mother was killed by Tudor soldiers 14 years ago.
- 14 years ago. Grunbeld has red hair. He is already huge, for his age. His mother, hailing from destitute nobility, schools him in swordplay. Despised, he gets beaten up by some kids. Thinking Grunbeld's dead, they abandon him in the forest. While he lies there, a girl with a wolf accompanying her approaches him and calls him a dragon. The strange, elf-like girl's name is Benedicte. She seems blind. She says her eyes can't see but her heart does. Grunbeld seems to her a big, red object, so she calls him a dragon. She drags him to a hot spring which heals his wounds. Benedicte tells him he will become a powerful dragon, able to burn everything down. He will attack with fire and his scales will endure any blow.
- Soon after, Tudor attacks. His family's servant is cruelly killed, while his mom is raped and killed while he's forced to watch. Later, together with other children, he is abducted to the Empire's fortress on the island, Chester, as a prisoner of war. There, he undergoes cruel reeducation, which is supposed to make him faithful to Tudor. There he meets Edward, a minor candidate to succeed the throne of Grant, and Sigur, a noble girl, and becomes friends with them. They hope they will be rescued soon. Abecasis, an officer in charge of reeducation, is a callous asshole, who doesn't value the kids' lives. They also undergo military training. Even after a long time, Grunbeld resists to pledge loyalty to Tudor and give in to its religion, the beliefs of the Holy See. After some soldiers overhear him, he's punished by being forced into a duel with a minor officer. Thanks to some clever thinking, physical strength and noticing that the soldier is used to fighting in heavy armor, he wins and kills the officer in a gory way. He kills the same soldier who raped and killed his mother that way. For what he did, Sigur gets punished in his stead. She's raped and tortured.
- Four years pass. Grunbeld's continued presence starts being looked at as a problem. Abecasis arranges for him a fight in an old colosseum against a tiger. Edward comes up with a plan and asks for the fight to be held at night. Also, as a weapon, Grunbeld's given a warhammer obviously too heavy to lift. Again, they win the fight thanks to their smarts. They use torches used to illuminate the arena. Benedicte's prophecy seems to be real. Grunbeld manages to lift the hammer - the very same he uses in Berserk. While his friends distract the tiger with their torches, he drops the hammer on the tiger, killing it gorily. Abecasis is about to kill the kids anyway, by ordering some archers to fire, but just at the right moment, Grant soldiers flood into the colosseum. They're led by General Kirsten, who has been wanting to charge in for a long time, but Grant royalty was against. After many requests, he finally got the permission. Abecasis manages to escape. Grunbeld finds a Beherit in the pool of the tiger's blood.
- Later, Kirsten takes Grunbeld in as his son. During the festivities after victory, the Grand Duke appear, but doesn't say much, which infuriates his son, Edward, after all he has been through. It turns out Benedicte was the highest priestess in Grant. At night, Grunbeld goes to the hot spring where he has a conversation with Benedicte.
- CHAPTER 2 Fourteen years later. Grunbeld is now a knight. He leads "Flame Dragon Knights" and is the army's most popular leader. Edward is his second-in-command, while Sigur leads heavy infantry. A battle with Tudor occurs. Grunbeld rides into it in a chariot pulled by eight horses. Chariots are obsolete as a tool of war, but Grunbeld in full armor is too heavy for any horse. He wins the battle, destroying the enemy with his giant warhammer. After the battle, he goes to a temple where Benedicte is and they talk about his Beherit.
- Horcon, the Grand Duke, is mad at Grunbeld because of his popularity and his own jealousy. It turns out the Grand Duke was the one responsible for the recent murders. He abducted a girl and is keeping her closed up in a hidden room behind his and rapes her as a way to vent. In Grant, there is an assassin organization maintained by the Grand Duke, that's helping him kill. The Duke is informed that the assassins intercepted an enemy spy. He says Tudor is readying a huge army to crush Grant.
- CHAPTER 3 Edward's mother, Fulda, is the Duke's lover. Rumors of her wanting to have sex with Grunbeld make Edward anxious. Meanwhile, Kirsten comes to Fire Dragon's Nest to talk to Grunbeld about the murders. They celebrate their recent victory together. At night, Horcon and Abecasis meet in secret in a ship, at the sea off the island's shore. Tudor wants Horcon to sell them his country in exchange for wealth and an important post in the Empire. Horcon decides to make use of his son Edward to kill Grunbeld - the biggest obstacle in Tudor's way. News of the Grand Duke wanting to give up the throne to Grunbeld reach the fortress of Fire Dragon's Nest. Edward becomes jealous of Grunbeld - he works hard and yet it's Grunbeld who collects all the praise. Meanwhile, an assassination attempt on Benedicte occurs. Sigur manages to defend her, killing all the attackers. Fulda seduces Grunbeld and has sex with him. It turns out she was the one who tried to kill Benedicte. Edward learns of what his mother did. He goes mad with rage and strangles her to death. Sigur tells Grunbeld of the assassins. Edward tries to confront Grunbeld about his mom, but is ignored. Edward's rage is slowly building. Suddenly, assassins surround him. They deliver him to the Grand Duke's room. Horcon congratulates him on killing his mother and interfering with Grunbeld's ascent to the throne. He says Edward is worthy of being his heir and tells him to eliminate his biggest obstacle - Grunbeld.
- CHAPTER 4 Benedicte uses her mystical powers to tell Grunbeld's his future. Sigur suddenly appears, bearing news of an envoy from Midland in the capital. Grunbeld sets off. The temple gets raided, with Sigur and Benedicte inside. It turns out the attackers are led by Mateusz, the boss of assassins and Edward. At the same time, Grunbeld is attacked as well. In the temple, a fight breaks out, but the two girls manage to escape with the help of Ludwig the wolf. Grunbeld leads a bloody battle against Tudor soldiers commanded by Abecasis. Grunbeld wins. Abecasis is heavily wounded, but escapes. Without a commander, chaos among enemy ranks ensues. En route to Fire Dragon's Nest, Grunbeld finds Sigur and Benedicte, almost dead, with arrows in their backs. Benedicte tells him of Edward's betrayal. It dawns on him that everyone is his enemy now - both Tudor and Grant soldier, led by his supposedly best friend. He suspects it being the work of Horcon. Edward appears before him, saying it's him who's the commander of Fire Dragon's Nest now. Kirsten killed himself, not to become a hostage. Edward took everything precious from Grunbeld. Edward's the Griffith to his Guts. Abecasis and his soldiers appear at Grunbeld's rear, having him surrounded. Grunbeld is defending himself for a long time. Then, cannons roll in. Grunbeld withstands a few hits from the cannon. Edward decides he wants to deal him the final blow. Benedicte says her last words: "Find the hawk of light - that is your destiny". As Grunbeld is about to die, he voices his dying wish: "I want to fight more". The Beherit awakens, black clouds suddenly gather around. The Beherit grants his wish. God Hand appears. Grunbeld agrees to sacrifice what's most precious to him. As Sigur is about to be raped by Edward, he feels the Brand of a Sacrifice appear on his face. Sigur and Benedicte do too. Grunbeld is now a dragon. He kills everyone - including Edward and Abecasis. The he barges into the Grand Duke's room to kill him too.
- EPILOGUE A few years later. Grunbeld travels through Midland. He aims to find the hawk of light that Benedicte mentioned.
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