The Let's Play Archive

Ar Tonelico II

by Feinne

Part 12: Chapter 11: Secrets

Chapter 11: Secrets

Feinne's Fourth Wall Lectures:
So let's talk real fast about this very real choice coming up. What happens when we choose Luca or Cloche here? The first thing is that we instantly lock ourselves out of the other's ending. Substantial portions of the game are either slightly or significantly different between the two paths, though they mostly converge by the mid-late game. Cloche's path is actually substantially harder in several important ways that I'll discuss as we get to them. Oh yeah, just to note, after that one scene Croix and Luca are set to Bad affinity with each other, even if you choose her path.

Loading Excerpt- Personal Logs, C. Bartel
I thought this through, but there's really only one choice I can make.


(Everything I believed in until now: the Grand Bell, Captain Leglius, and Lady Cloche.)
She seemed so lonely, having to suffer all by herself.
(A completely new place: The Sacred Army, the Divine Messenger, and now Luca's there.)
Luca's painful face is burned into my memory and won't go away.
It's a huge decision that I can't take lightly...
(It's not just me. This determines Lady Cloche's and Luca's destiny, too.)

I mean what the hell does Luca even need me for anyway? Not like she needs someone to sneak her into the Grand Bell any more.

Lady Cloche...
I will protect her.

Anyway I went to Leglius and we told Alfman my decision. I really don't get that guy at all.

Yes sir. Please be lenient with your judgment.
After everything you saw, you still wish to stay, Croix Bartel?
...Yes sir.
Are you... INSANE!?
A normal person would be shocked and refuse to report for duty, or run to the Sacred Army.
But I... decided to protect Lady Cloche.
I applaud your spirit and conviction. However!
That doesn't mean I've forgiven you just yet.
...Chancellor! I beg for clemency!

Listen, Croix. You're a dog! A dog of the Grand Bell Hall.
Complete your missions faithfully. Failure is unforgivable.
Your body is merely a shield. Should you die, you must still protect Lady Cloche.
That is your task. Understood!?
...Yes sir.

Lady Cloche asked me down to her room after the meeting with Alfman.

...No, I don't.
I don't know what Leglius or the Chancellor told you, but I don't need you.
Your help is not required.
I swore to protect you when I first joined the Grand Bell Knights.
You already have someone else you want to protect, don't you!?
Why didn't you go with her!?
I... am a knight whose sole purpose is to protect you, Lady Cloche.
She was your fiancé.
That... was a lie.
Everything she did was a lie. She tricked me that whole time.
Luca was just using me to find and rescue her little sister.
...I-I see.

I decided to just lay what I'd decided out there.

I want to be your ally.
I don't know what I can do by myself, but I'll always be by your side.
The Metafalica you aim to build... I want to help you create it.
And even if that means leaving the current Grand Bell, I don't mind.
Hear me out. I'm not here because I wanted to return to the Grand Bell.
I'm here for you and only you. You're the only reason I'm here.
...I see.
Though you may be more skilled than the other knights, you seem quite overconfident.
I'm sorry if I made you unhappy.
It's fine.
I'll keep you by my side. However, you'll be my dog!
Protecting me is your only concern. Your job is to never allow even a finger to touch me.
Do not take your eyes off me, or ever be distracted by anything else.

Because you are a dog. Do you understand?
...Yes, ma'am.
This will be your life for the foreseeable future.
Can you really bear it?
That's why I'm here.
...Don't be foolish! No one can endure such an existence...
During the incident the other day, I learned how hard it is for you.
And you don't even have anyone to give you support.
So if I can help in any way, I'll do whatever it takes.
If my presence here gives you any comfort at all, then I'll always be by your side.
...Do as you will!
Yes, ma'am.

Alfman called all of the knights together. It seems we're going to war, as of today.

We, the Grand Bell, have worked hard to free our world from the constraints of the past 400 years.
And finally, the day we escape from Her curse is upon us!
Those who are here today are in a special position within the Grand Bell.
Be proud of your actions! Together, we will save this world!
Now Laude, I leave the rest to you.
I will now explain our battle strategy for the war.
The main weapon in this war, as you all know, is the Infel Pira.

400 years ago, silence fell upon the Infel Pira after a savage attack by Her.
However, it wasn't completely destroyed.
We've discovered that a certain command will in fact bring it back to life!
This will become a reality when the ancient Hymnos song, Replakia, is sung.
That's right! Lady Cloche will sing Replakia and expel the Goddess!
Now, I will provide each squad with a summary of the plan, and their individual orders.
First, the 7th Squadron...

They had a special task for us, though.

You will be assigned to a secret task.
Wow! Sounds awesome...
Your mission is to guard Lady Cloche as she returns to Rakshek Resort.
But, that's where she was attacked last time.
About Replakia, the song that I spoke of in my speech...
We're not quite in complete control of it at the moment.
What? Then that entire speech was...
Calm down. The Grand Bell does have possession of Replakia.
However, it isn't in Pastalia, but is stored at the Rakshek Resort.
Lady Cloche's vacation was actually a cover for her to perform the ritual for downloading it.
Ah... so the Sacred Army found out, and that's why they attacked the resort.
That is correct.

Replakia is hidden in the ancient ruins beneath the resort.
The Hymnos is stored in the form of a Hymn Crystal...
Which is a medium that allows for Hymnos to be recorded.
So we just have to go get this crystal that has the song sealed within it?
That's right.
And, there's another important role for you.
To protect Lady Cloche no matter what... right?

We're getting ready to leave now. We're going into hostile territory, and I can't imagine we'll get to Replakia without a fight.

Each of you shall prepare and meet back up at the Grand Bell Hall.
That is all.

Loading Excerpt- The Melody of Metafalica, C. Pastalia, L. Trulyworth
Croix stubbornly stayed with me even after I tried to push him away. The other squads were distracting the Sacred Army while we snuck behind their lines to recover Replakia.


Are you ready?
Of course.

While I was up on deck, Croix and Leglius were talking about something below. I'm assuming it was something mission critical.

Ah, Croix. What is it?
Thank you very much for helping me out.
I didn't do anything worthy of your gratitude. I'm powerless.
But I was going to be executed...
Well, I did try to help, but I wasn't responsible for your release.
Someone else stepped in to save you.
Lady Cloche.
No way...

I was looking over the lands below on deck when Cocona ran up behind me and startled me. It turned out she had something very important to ask me, and she certainly did deserve answers.

Wha-what are you doing!?
You were more surprised than I expected, so you surprised me back.
I guess you're more scareable than I thought.
...I was just doing a little thinking!
So? Do you want something?
Well, um, no. I just had a few questions.
Oh, what is it?
Are you the one giving the command to cause more I.P.D.s?
Are you the one who came up with the plan to make more I.P.D.s?
Please answer me.
...Yes, it's me. It all happened under my orders.
Well, um, that's not what I meant...
Are you the one who thought of making more I.P.D.s?
There is responsibility on my part, yes.
Ergh! I don't get all this hard stuff!

Well no, but...
Then, do you agree with increasing I.P.D.s?
Of course not!
I'm so glad!
I was getting kinda nervous there.
I didn't want to believe the plan to make more I.P.D.s was your idea.
If you did come up with it, I don't know how shocked I would be.
But... it was pretty much my fault for promoting it.
But you didn't want to, right?
Then it's fine!
You see, I actually kinda hated you for a while.

But when Cro decided he wanted to protect you, I got kinda confused.
So I wanted to ask you about it!
I'm sorry I made you the bad guy in my head!
Uh... it's alright, I suppose.
You know, you really trust Croix, don't you?
Of course! I owe my life to him.
...I see.
Lady Cloche, do you like Cro?
What are you talking about!?
That man is just a guard, a shield! He's nothing more than a loyal dog!
I love Cro.
Hahaha, did I surprise you? You really are cute!
It's so easy to read your reactions.
If you joke around too much, you'll get...
But, it's true.

That I really love Cro.
Too bad our ages are too far apart. I'm like his little sister.
So, Lady Cloche, I leave a part of Cro to you!
I always respected you before, and I still respect you now.
Why do you... you know... respect me of all people?
Well because...

It turns out she was there that day. I'm not going into details.

Uh, perhaps it was the time I went for inspection and study.
Yeah, that's probably it. I still remember what happened that time.
You held a baby that was crying, and dying.
Your dress got dirty, but you still held it tightly. You were looking at the baby with such kind eyes.
I've been a big fan of yours ever since!
I think you have the wrong person.
I also found our you're really bad at lying.
With all that combined, I really like you!
I envy you.

I'm not really honest... It's more like being selfish.
Oh? I'm quite selfish, myself.
Then we're the same!
Just in one way.
I know something else that's the same.
What's that?
You love Gergo, don't you? I love him, too.
See this strap on my belt? It's Gergo...
Th-that's! That's a legendary strap nowadays!
And his eyes are looking up to the right! Only 10 of this version were ever made!
Wow, you know everything!
I also have the toothbrush for the cancelled series, Gergorilla.
Are you serious!? I'm so jealous...

Then Cocona told me something truly horrible.

That man! He doesn't know the value of Gergorilla!
I was really sad...
Lady Cloche!
We'll get along really well!
Yes, ma'am!
Let's go to the Fancy Shop together next time!
You can bring Croix along when we do.
I'll make him hold our bags and be our bodyguard.


It seems she really likes you. It's the first time she's taken a shine to anyone.
Being a maiden is a tough job. Because of her role, she can't really talk to anyone.
That's why I wanted to avoid having you exiled.
...Yes, sir.
Protect Lady Cloche's heart as well.
It's just another job for the knight who protects the maiden.
It's actually not bad. Being there to talk with her, secretly going out on dates...
...Captain!? Were you... also?
Well... it was a long time ago. And I wasn't the main hero then.
Anyway. We got off track.
Rest before we leave. Protecting the maiden is far more difficult than you might expect.

There was a huge crowd in Rakshek. The Sacred Army was there, and Croix rushed to the edges of the crowd to watch. At the time I didn't know why he was so interested.

Wait, Croix!
That's... the Sacred Army?

Is because it is not the right time!
However, that time is surely getting closer.
As proof, the Divine Messenger has descended on the Sacred Army!
Her plan for our utopia does not include the vile acts of the current Grand Bell!
It will be a paradise beyond human knowledge, created by Her will!
We support the Goddess, and will help create a true utopia on this world!
Do not give in to the corrupt government!
...That man. You let him speak and he continues to rant about nonsense!
Lady Cloche!
Not now! We're not officially in Pastalia!
Then it can't be helped...

It seemed Croix and the leader of the Sacred Army had a history.

Targana... it really was you!
Knight: You! Watch how you speak to our lord!
Mind your tongue!
No, it's alright.
But Croix... I am disappointed in you.
Why didn't you take my hand? Why didn't you come with me?
What are you talking about? I haven't seen you since we trained together.
I'm not talking about the past!
...Alas, the damage has been done.
You've betrayed me...
It's too bad... It really is a shame...
Wait. I don't understand what you're saying.
Ah, right. Relay this message to your Maiden of Taboo.
She can make all the speeches she wants, but if she continues to lie, the people will revolt.

Don't you dare walk away on your own. Aren't you aware that you're a bodyguard?
Good. Just remember, if you do that again, I will take proper measures.
...Yes, ma'am.
Do you still have your mind on her?
She is part of the enemy force. Understand your position.
...Yes, ma'am. I'm very sorry.
Lady Cloche, please show him some mercy.
And Croix, please refrain from taking arbitrary actions. Fulfill your duty.
We will now go to Rakshek Resort. Prepare yourselves here.
As soon as we're ready, we'll head to the resort.


Oh... hehehe. So you saw me, huh? I'm so embarrassed.
Mrs. Lahr: So you might be the real maiden, huh!? I was so surprised.
No wonder you're so good at giving therapy. Hahahaha!
Um, I don't think that has anything to do with it...
Nana: Oh please. You're more fit to be the maiden than our current one.
Nana: Maybe it's just that I don't really like her.
It feels like she's kinda stuck up, you know?
Mrs. Lahr: I'd be so proud if you were Our Lady of Holy Maidens!
After all, I taught you everything you know about therapy!
Mrs. Lahr: But seriously, if you were the maiden, I'd try harder at lotsa different stuff.
Big Sis: me too! I'd raise my kid to become a knight and make 'em your bodyguard!
Big Bro: Same here! I won't waste any more Leaf on luxury! This is Metafalica kind of economizing!
Big Sis: What the hell is that!? Are you stupid?
Mrs. Lahr: Luca, there are times when things may get hard, but we'll always be with you.
Big Bro: You're not alone. We'll all create Metafalica together.
Thank you. And, um... about my job...

Mrs. Lahr: It'll be fine. Don't worry about us. Go become Our Lady of Holy Maidens!
...Okay. Thank you very much!
Hmm. Luca, you're really popular. I'm impressed!

You'd never know looking at it that there was even a doorway into a hidden space in Rakshek Resort.

I never thought it would be right there near the entrance...
...Nothing's happening.
Of course not. If it just opened up, what would be the point in hiding it?
Lady Cloche, please read the words in the middle.
...Hey, I can read it!
Hyammra ar ciel
Ceze dand
This is...!

We were sent into an amazing world! I'd never seen what lay under the ground of Metafalss before, it's truly a fantastic sight.

What is this place...?
An ancient ruin. The Grand Bell secretly maintains this place.
The official name for it is the "Conductor Vision". It's a world within the Rim.
I never knew a world like this existed inside the Rim...
And though it sounds like I know all about it, I've never been here before.
Which means, we don't even know where it is, huh?
We'll just have to search for it.

Of course, things weren't going to be that easy. They never are.

Loading excerpt- Operational Logs, S.
There was a breach at the facility where Hymn Crystal Replakia is stored. Seems like the Grand Bell is about to make its move. Attempted interdiction of enemy forces to prevent capture of Hymn Crystal.


Yes. Take that back and our mission will be complete.

It's lucky there were still some of these around in the area all things considered.

???: Target located.
Initiating battle mode.
What? We weren't told about this!
Don't you dare lay a finger on Lady Cloche!
???: What a miserable sight. If the public saw this, they would cry.

I'll reintroduce myself. I'm known by the name, Shun.
It really is too bad. I didn't want to fight you.
But you chose to do this, so it's unavoidable.
What are these robot weapons?
They are weapons that are generally known as the Divine Army.
I'm glad there were some in the storage area.
I guess there's no other choice but to fight!

Boss Battle: Shun and Divine Army x2
This battle is the game's wake-up call fight. All three enemies have a lot of health and can potentially hit very hard if you're not getting a decent number of Great blocks. It's very easy to get a game over on this the first time you see this fight. The equivalent Luca's side is nowhere near as nasty as this, which is part of what makes her path so much easier. You're never going to beat them with Vanguard attacks, so charge up a nasty Red Magic over a few turns and heal whoever's guarding Cloche with the other character when they get low. A few turns charge should be enough to one-shot the field.

Was unable to defeat enemy, and have been forced to discorporate. If they've got Replakia, then I suppose it's time to inform Raki as to the situation. I'd hoped to avoid doing so, she's been acting sort of odd lately. It can't be helped, though. In the name of Frelia. Signing off.

We'll meet again...
...He's gone.
System Message: Obtained Hymn Crystal Replakia!
Alright, our mission is complete. Let's return to the Grand Bell.
Lady Cloche, let's go.
Hey, Croix...
What is your true reason for staying at the Grand Bell?
If it's because she dumped you, I don't want you here. I have pride, too.
Never mind! We have to get going!
Y-yes, ma'am...
But... I do appreciate it.
Come on, hurry up!

Next Time on Ar Tonelico 2: METHOD_REPLAKIA/.