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Fairy Dance (フェアリィ・ダンス, Fearyi Dansu?) ist der dritte Band der Sword Art Online Light Novel-Serie und wurde am 10. Dezember 2009 veröffentlicht. In deutsch sollte dieser Band ursprünglich 2015 lieferbar sein. Aufgrund von Problemen mit der Übersetzung, so der Verlag Tokyopop, verzögert sich die Veröffentlichung in Deutschland seither.
Kirito kehrt aus "Sword Art Online" (SAO) zurück und findet heraus, dass Asuna (und 300 weitere Spieler) immer noch schläft (schlafen) und in dem neuen Spiel "ALfheim Online" (ALO) gesehen worden ist.
The story introduces Kirigaya Suguha, the younger sister/cousin of Kazuto (Kirito). While he was trapped in SAO, Suguha and his family watch over him and waited for his return. Suguha's parents reveal that Kirito is actually her cousin, and that he had already found out about it at an early age. On the day of Kazuto's 16th birthday, she attended the hospital that held the body of her sleeping brother; who was still trapped in the death game for nearly two years. A month later, Kirito reawakens, the day was 7th November of 2024.
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Two months have passed since Kazuto returned to the real world; after watching Suguha performing her daily exercises with her shinai, he challenges her for a match at their family dojo. Despite displaying the amazing skills that he had acquired from his imprisonment, the body of the former black swordsman was still inferior to the well-trained body of his cousin, and thus resulted with his loss.
After considering about re-practicing kendo alongside with Suguha, Kazuto remembers he had to visit Asuna, who had still not awoken after the events of SAO. At first when Kazuto awoke from SAO he stumbled out of the hospital bed searching for Asuna, he found her with the help of a man claiming affiliation with the Ministry of Internal Affairs - SAO Countermeasures Division. He told Kazuto that Yuuki Asuna has been admitted to another medical institution in Tokorozawa, along with 300 SAO players who have not awoken yet. Initially it was to believe that it was a lag spike, the 300 some players still did not awake. Upon visiting Asuna, he met Yuuki Shouzou, Asuna's father who is also CEO of the electronics company RECTO, and Sugou Nobuyuki, Asuna's Groom.
Over the next few days, Kazuto received an email from Agil (Andrew Gilbert Mills) with an in-game screen shot of Asuna in a golden cage. Upon viewing the photo, Kazuto went to Andrew's cafe: «Dicey Café», to talk about ALfheim Online, the game which Asuna was trapped in. Andrew gave Kazuto the game and some booklets about it. After adjusting the game to his requirements, Kazuto created his new online persona: the «Spriggan» race character «Kirito». The game should have brought Kirito to the Spriggan hometown, however it freezes and to his surprise, the game suddenly drops him to the unknown void.
In ALfheim Online, two Sylph fairies were resting after flying; Leafa and Recon are friends in real life who just started playing ALfheim Online. Earlier, Leafa had formed a party with four players to go into a dungeon, however when returning to their homeland in Sylph territory, they were ambushed by Salamanders. In ALO, there is always fighting with the other races.
After the free fall ended, Kirito found himself in a forest. After checking his surroundings he made sure the game had a logout feature. Upon checking his character stats, he noticed that all the skill levels he had were the same as his SAO character. Remembering he had packaged Yui, he frantically looked in his inventory, and found MHCP001, the package he stored Yui in. Upon using the item, Yui appears as a small «Navigation Pixie», who then began to explain that ALO was a copy of SAO, which explained the reason of his high leveled skills.
Leafa was attacked with a magic casted by the Salamander. Knowing her energy was running out she called out to the Salamanders to come at her if they were not afraid of the Death Penalty. At that moment, she met Kirito, at first she thought was a noob, turned out saving her life and defeating the Salamanders. Afterwards Leafa taught Kirito how to fly, and then watch him crash landed into the Sylph's capital Swilvane, the "Tower of the Wind". After Leafa reunited herself with Recon, Kirito explained to her that he needed to get to the top of the World Tree to see someone.
After logging out, Suguha sat in her room, thinking about Kirito, and how she wanted to duel him. As it turns out when her cousin Kazuto was imprisoned in the death game for over a year, she grew curious about the illusionary world; she asked her mother for an Amusphere, as well as assistance from her classmate: Nagata Shinichi to show her the appeal of the game world, which then brought her to the world of «ALfheim Online».
About sixty days had passed since Asuna awakened in this place. She had felt no fear in the golden cage. All she hoped was that Kirito would come to save her.
Playing as Leafa in ALO, Suguha was in shock by the fact that the player: Kirito had such pitiful equipment. After buying better equipment with the «Yrd» (ALO Money) that was transferred from SAO, they ran into Sigurd, Leafa's ex-party member. He was enraged because he learned that Leafa had decided to quit his party. As soon as she confirmed it, Sigurd declared that she would regret it and left, Recon stayed in the party until more evidence of what Kirito was looking for was found.
Sugou, in game as Oberon, told Asuna about his meeting with Kazuto in her ward and his reason for trapping Asuna here was to secure a position in RECTO. However unbeknownst to Sugou, Asuna had been patiently watching him input the code to her cage; all she needs is a few more numbers to unlock the cage and access a terminal after which, she would be able to logout...
Playing as Leafa in ALO, Suguha was awe-struck by Kirito's swordsmanship as he cuts down a group of monsters without much difficulty. As they journey through a tunnel called the «Legrue Corridor», they engage in battle at a bridge against an ambush party of 12 Salamander players. With Leafa acting as healing support, Kirito shows his battle prowess against the opposing party. Using the illusion ability of a Spriggan player, Kirito reappears as a demonic figure similar to a devil. In this Devil form, Kirito wreaks havoc onto the Salamanders, inflicting fear and slaughtering the group members one by one. By Leafa's request, Kirito left one member alive to question. The Devil form is doubtfully similar to The Gleam Eyes from SAO.
After bribing the last Salamander mage with many items that Kirito acquired from his rampage, along with the Intel from Recon, Leafa learns about Sigurd's betrayal, as well as that a large Salamander army is planning to invade the alliance meeting of the Sylphs and the Cait Sith race. Kirito and Leafa rushed through the tunnel, ignoring the horde of monsters they met on their way as they catapulted out of the tunnel.
Once they had located the 68 Salamander players and the 14 Sylph and Cait Sith players, Kirito intervenes by claiming that he was the representative of the Spriggan-Undine Union. To support his claim, Kirito was challenged by «General Eugene»; the leading commander of the Salamander players. In their one-on-one duel, Kirito was pressured by the unblockable «Demonic Sword Gram» and resorted to even his odds by dual wielding his black great-sword and Leafa's katana. The climatic duel ended with Kirito's victory.
When Eugene was revived by the Sylph leader: «Lady Sakuya», on Kirito's request, he decided to believe Kirito's earlier claim when a Salamander vanguard named «Kagemune»; the leader of the Salamander party who assaulted Leafa earlier; stated that he had witnessed that the Spriggan had an Undine companion. Heeding to Kirito's threat of a war against the four races, Eugene commanded his army to return and left the scene after telling Kirito that he wishes to fight him again another time.
Afterwards, Sakuya learn of Sigurd's action from Leafa. With the help of communication from the Cait Sith leader: «Alicia Rue». Sakuya spoke to Sigurd and acting as the Sylph leader, she removes Sigurd from the Sylph territory when she banishes him, marking him as a renegade of the Sylph. Later on, Kirito confesses that he was lying when he claimed to be the ambassador to the other players. While talking to the two leaders, Kirito voluntarily gave them a large, heavy bag of Yrd to help pay the funding for the World Tree raid. When everyone left, Kirito and Leafa continue their journey towards the town of «Alne».
Meanwhile, Asuna patiently waited until she had fully memorized the passcode for her prison gate. After inputting the number code, Asuna begins to attempt her escape. Yearning to reunite with Kirito, she whispered to herself that she would do her best, as she finally left her golden prison.
- While in the Light Novel, Kirito was able to learn on his own that Suguha was not his real sister, he was not aware of this within the Web version of the story.
- In the Web version of the story, it was 2000 people who were trapped within ALO, as opposed to 300. Though, this is likely because the Light Novel also only had 10,000 players, while the Web version has 50,000.
- In the Light Novel, Sugou states that the wedding between him and Asuna was to take place in one week. However, in the Web Novel, the wedding was originally going to be in one month.