Tart Magica Chapter 20
As Tart vows to bring light to France, Melissa vows to go forth so that she can support Tart. Elisa vows to go for glory, not only for herself but for Tart as well. Pernelle asks if Tart has chosen to go forth and fight for France once more and urges her to go and fight against Isabeau while she stays behind to treat Kyubey's wounds. Tart asks her to do something to help "Monsieur Angel" as she goes out to fight.
Back out on the battlefield, Minou lashes her whip repeatedly, causing the soldiers to be thrown into the air by the force of her attacks. Batard and Richmont worry they won't be able to do anything more than evade her attacks as La Hire rallies the troops once more with a battle-cry for La Pucelle. Oswald hurries the troops, urging them to attack before the enemy can focus in on anyone. As Minou readies her whip once more, she notices Isabeau walking up behind her. She humbles herself before Isabeau, assuring her there was no need for her to come down in person to such a filthy place. Isabeau waves her hands before her which causes the troops to collapse to their knees, their strength being sucked out from them. As she aims her hand forward, a magic circle having formed around it, a standard stabs into the ground before her and blocks her next move: it's Tart. The soldiers cry out, cheering and moved to tears at the sight of their heroine now freed from her prison. Minou warns her she was foolish to have come out of her cell and would have had a quick and painless death had she stayed in there. She denounces her for being a heretic who would dare attempt to fight her, much less stand before her in her magical girl state. Tart stands proudly at the head of the troops, vowing to stand and fight alongside those who were kind enough to come to her rescue despite being called a heretic. Minou orders the magical girl slaves she brought with her to stop Tart before she can get near Isabeau. But Melissa and Elisa have joined the fray and take on the other magical girls, allowing Tart to race in towards Isabeau. Tart slashes down with her sword at her, but the attack seems to simply go through her. Tart realizes it's just like before when she cut through her but to no effect. Isabeau raises her hands once more and fires a beam of magic directly at her. As the dust settles, Tart looks up from behind her shield to find that Pernelle has blocked the attack with her own magic circle. Tart turns to find Kyubey standing behind her and is glad to see he's alright. Kyubey tells Tart that she may not have the power to get through to Isabeau due to the result of a wish. Someone had wished that normal attacks be rendered useless against Isabeau and until they can figure out the secret, they won't be able to defeat her. Elisa calls out to Kyubey and asks if he wasn't the one who granted the wish. However, while it may be true that Kyubey turned her into a magical girl, he was not the one that granted the subsequent wish. It was after Kyubey granted her wish that Isabeau underwent a change even he could not have predicted: she became part magical girl, part witch, and part Kyubey (incubator).
In 1385, at the young age of fourteen, Isabeau came to France to be married. The flashback shows Kyubey introducing himself to a young Isabeau in her bedchambers. She had talent Kyubey had rarely encountered before, and it wasn't just her potential as a magical girl. She was both knowledgeable and clever. While Kyubey was trying to work out a contract with her, Isabeau asked him a number of questions as well, such as what magical girls and witches were. She wanted details on contracts, wishes, and also about Kyubey's very existence. As Kyubey asks if Isabeau will agree to his contract, she reaches over to grab hold of a candlestick and uses it to stab Kyubey through the head with the ends. Isabeau looks at the dead body of Kyubey as a living copy of himself appears on the windowsill. He begins to consume his dead body and tells her it was meaningless to do so since there are more than enough replacements of his body available. Isabeau grins slyly and responds she only did it prove that what he had told her was true. As she holds Kyubey's face in her hands, she tells him that she didn't come to France merely to be a decoration on some king's arm, but rather that she had her own desires: this country, England, Portugal, even the Holy Roman Empire. She wants everything to be hers. Kyubey asks if that is what she wishes for and promises her he is willing to give her any miracle she wants. Isabeau says that's wonderful but she wants more than just that. She will take the power she needs and fulfill her own wishes. As Kyubey once more asks what it is she wishes for, she makes her wish: for everything he possesses.
The flashback ends as Kyubey reiterates that Isabeau became like him. However, she also became part magical girl and part witch as well. Isabeau gained the ability to create new magical girls just as he can, and she certainly did just that. With her massive amounts of magic, she had enough power then to destroy all of France had she wanted. Next, Isabeau found girls with closely interwoven fates (Minou, Lapin, and Corbeau) and plotted to make them her magical girls. With them on her side, she started to make changes to what should have been an unalterable fate. Her body was like an incubator's, it couldn't be permanently destroyed. But as a magical girl, her soul was encased within her soul gem which trapped her in an inescapable system of destiny. That was the one thing she never realized. Even though she possessed his powers, she could never completely be what Kyubey is. The transformation is only something that happens to a completely different life-form than an incubator. Yet the fate she commanded was exceedingly vast. As Kyubey explains this, the flashback shows scenes of Isabeau's soul gem becoming corrupted and her transformation into a witch. Isabeau had become like a mother to these girls, but after transforming into a witch, she was poised to kill them. Before the blow landed, her daughter's wish brought about an imperfect resurrection of Isabeau's empty shell of a body. Lapin cradles the now empty body of Isabeau as her witch form towers before her and her sisters. Lapin makes her wish: "I want my mother to return to how she was". What was left of Isabeau turned into a witch, but unlike the others, she was not left in a mindless state. At the same time she still controls her original body, complete with her original powers, like a puppet.
Isabeau repeats the word "Mourir!" as she leaps up cackling, enormous hands erupting from the ground and cradling her body as a witch with several giant caterpillar-like creatures fused together at the tail appears to the side. Isabeau has turned into her true form, the witch Crepuscule de la Reine (Twilight of the Queen). The soldiers look up at the creature and pray that Tart has the strength to fight while Minou beams and calls her a goddess. Tart readies herself for battle, not caring how big the enemy she must face is. She leaps up at Isabeau as several of the caterpillar creatures shoot beams of energy from their open jaws. Tart blocks the beam with her shield and brings her sword slashing down through the center of the closest one. But the caterpillar-like witch only smiles as it remains unharmed by Tart's attack. Kyubey watches as he describes how all of France was encased within her witch's barrier the moment her witch form was born. Elisa steadies her rifle and aims a shot at one of the caterpillar appendages, but it too does no damage despite hitting the creature squarely in the face. Minou describes how within Isabeau's barrier, witches could be seen by humans which caused many of them to become witch hunters in this dark age. As the land continued to be enveloped in darkness and despair, this caused Isabeau to become an even larger witch and her barrier to spread farther and wider throughout the world, bringing Isabeau closer and closer to world domination. Melissa also joins in the battle against Isabeau, bringing her polearm down heavily onto Isabeau's human form that sits inert in the palm of two giant hands. She causes her conical projectile to detonate, but as the dust clears Isbeau's human form remains untouched. Kyubey knows that any magical girl who contracts with Isabeau loses her will and soul when the contract was made, meaning there is no way for the incubators to collect their energy when they transform into witches. If Isabeau manages to extend her territory to encompass the globe, this world will lose any value it has to the incubators. To ensure this wouldn't happen, Kyubey searched and guided talented magical girls who might be able to take Isabeau on, but even he could not imagine that she would grow to become this bad. Tart continues her attacks, but no matter how what she throws at her, Isabeau remains unharmed. As Elisa and Tart wonder what magic is protecting her, Minou offers the answer. She knew that only a magical girl could defeat a witch, so she wished that her mother shall not be defeated by any magical girl in existence. The girls dodge another beam of energy fired by Isabeau, narrowly coming out of it unharmed. They wonder how they'll defeat her if they cannot do so as magical girls. Tart gets to her feet, vowing to never give up even if the odds are a million to one. She charges once more at Isabeau, who fires two more beams of energy at her. Tart blocks the one but is hit by the second. She struggles to stand once more as her soul gem continues to darken with the exertion of the battle. She's almost at her limit as she promises to continue to the end, even if she can't hold her sword any longer.
As she stands, she hears the voice of Riz reminding her of her sword training back in her home village. The spirit of Riz steadies the sword in Tart's hands, telling her to not hold the hilt so tightly and to use no more power than she has to. From before Tart, Riz's soul gem materializes from a shadow as Riz tells her that her final vow was for her soul to remain with her from that day forward. Even now Riz continues to protect Tart as at this moment her wish will become true: this is the moment when a new hero shall be born. Even if Riz's body was lost, her soul remained behind like her shadow, always by Tart's side. The scene flashes back to when Riz first shut the gates of hell and reached her hand out towards Tart, her soul gem dropping from her hand outside of the gates. Riz stands behind Tart, both of them holding the sword in their hands as Riz tells Tart that even though Isabeau is a witch who cannot ever be defeated by a magical girl, together they can make miracles happen because at this moment Tart is more than just a magical girl.