The Let's Play Archive

Ar Tonelico II

by Feinne

Part 76: Jacqli's Soulspace, Level 5

Jacqli's Soulspace, Level 5

Loading Excerpt- Personal Logs, C. Bartel
We finished Jacqli's Cosmosphere story today...


System Message: Kuroaki greeted her with one word, even though he had so much more to say.
G, good morning!
System Message: Miwa Togasaki greeted back with an awkward smile.
Mawata-kun... Miss Togasaki, good morning.
Good morning you two!
(Miss Manabe, Miss Ryokuya...)
System Message: Kuroaki was happy to see their sensitivity.

Don't forget the Fancy Shop.
Oh, that's right! Sorry big sis, I will add that to our plan.
How am I...
C'mon, we're going!
Let's go Miwa.
So you listen to what Mawata-kun says.
What!? No...
Easy, easy, Miss Togasaki!
Miss Manabe, you do this way too much.
Yes... I'm sorry.
Miss Togasaki, you should not forget to do reviews, just because you have good grades.
I don't need to do that.
Wh, what!?
Big sis always comes in 2nd, no matter how hard she tries, Miss Togasaki always has the top grades.

Oh, really? Well, it will be impossible to beat me in knowledge.
What did you say!?
Haha, easy, Miss Ryokuka.
(I'm glad Miwa is fitting in.)

But peaceful days were not to be ours.

You are!
Alfman Omega!
Calm down, I'm not trying to do anything here, but we should finish the battle soon.
Battle... why do we have to fight!?
I don't really know, since I just work under Master Miros. I just can't stand the gray zone though...
I'm so sick of all this happy-go-lucky talk.
Tomorrow night will be the night. Come to the old castle out of town. Miros will kill you all there.
What!? No...
That's not true... right? Miss Togasaki?
It... is.

The world began to crack more and more often, and more and more violently.

That's right. I'll go a little easy if you show up.
Hey! Wait!
Hey! Miss Togasaki!
Mawata-kun, what's the matter with you! Go after them.
Oh, okay!
I lost them... but they should be somewhere around.

I went down to the Sea. I knew she wouldn't be there, but it just felt right.

Will it be the heavens' tears or destiny that will block the bird's way?
Hello, how do you do.
Looks like it's fogging up.
You saw it... I'm, not... crying!
I'm not talking about you... Look at the weather.
The weather?
The rain is going to fall in this world. You should go home before it gets wet.
I will anytime. I was just looking for someone.
A girl with long black hair that I was with the other day, have you seen her?
No, I don't recall.
Alright... See ya.
Croix... I'm counting on you, just a little bit.

I didn't understand at the time what he'd meant, and I had no time to stop and think then.

It's closed... Dammit!

I don't deserve you...

The sky opened up and the rain began to pour, so I was forced to return to the dorms.

Whoa! A leak. C'mon now...
I can help you with that.
Tarooga! Stop breaking into my room.
Don't worry about it.
It's fine, I'll just set this bowl here.
System Message: Tarooga seems upset. The tools he held behind his back seemed painful.
Well, you can have this.
What is this...? A T-shirt.
You can change into that rare T-shirt instead.
I bet you don't even have anything to change into.
Oh... thanks.
(Hey! This is that Funbun from the movie! I actually like Pi and Pu better...)
You don't have any other problems do you?
Problems... You're the one who came over.
...Oh, I see. Well, ask me to come over anytime.
No, I will come over if I have the time but you will need to take care of it otherwise.
See ya.

I'll just shove it in the corner...
System Message: Funbun is staring at Kuroaki.
System Message: Funbun is staring at Kuroaki.
Funbun is crying that it doesn't want to get forgotten in the corner of the room.
...W, well, I should probably store somewhere.
System Message: Kuroaki lost to the attraction of Funbun.
You cannot leave Funbun...
*Sigh * The rain is slowing down... hey!
System Message: There was Miwa standing, drenched in the rain.
Finding Kuroaki did not move her at all. Her eyes kept staring at him.
Those eyes seemed to be possessed by something.

I rushed down to get her out of the rain.

I, I don't really know where to look. I'll try not to look at you.
... *peek *
Ahhh! Don't lift that up!
I'm kidding.
Hahaha... You scared me.
... ...*peek *
Ahhh! Stop teasing me, Miwa!
I don't care. ...I'm not ashamed of my body.
You can look.
Why were you standing in the rain...? You might get sick.
I wanted to hate you.
I wanted my body to get cold... Deep down to my heart.

...You will probably catch a cold before that, Miwa.
...The more I love you... the more my heart screams deep inside...
"Hate them, hate the humans! Kill them... Destroy them all..."
Kuroai: ...! Miwa...
The more I'm with you, the louder that voice will say, "Hate them! You can't forgive them."
I've seen you in my dreams. Dreams where I'm killing you with my bare hands.
My hands turn pure red, and I'm looking down on your corpse.
Once I wake up, my cheeks are cold with tears, and my heart is wrenching.
Why do we have to do this? Why does this have to happen...?
I don't wanna die, I don't want to kill! ...I don't want to kill you!
Ugh! ...... I want to be with you...
I thought I could go on and just be with you.
I felt like the time at school was becoming my life.
The more I felt that way, the more I heard myself scream...

Not all humans are your enemy. I'm sure we can understand each other somehow.
No, you can't change destiny. I've tried.
The humans will not forgive me for what I've done.
That's not...!
Shut up! What do you know!?
Humans betray... Filthy... You too, right?
Humans... must be destroyed...!
Miwa! Get a hold of yourself! Miwa!
...I'm sorry...
You see, this is me. The demon Miros, I can't change the destiny that I'm born with.
I wanted to keep being Miwa, but I couldn't. That's why this has to be goodbye.
Goodbye... Kuroaki.
It's... it's alright if I'm killed by you.
I don't mind, if it's you.
No... you can't...
I will not forgive you, if you let me do that to you...

I'm not sure when I fell asleep, but in the morning Miwa was gone.

She's gone...
System Message: Miwa was gone in the morning.
Her sweet scent lingered in the room.
Kuroaki's heart sank every time he thought of that short, yet long night with Miwa.
Kuroaki kept thinking.
The way for both of them to live.

Can destiny be avoided?

System Message: Kuroaki, Luca, and Reish headed toward the old castle ordered by Alfman.
The creepy old building made everyone nervous, and tense.
...So, this is Miros' secret hideout.
This is creepy... I'm, scared.
You never know where they will come from. Mawata-kun, let's do this!
Oh, okay.
...This might be the last time for this, if we lose.
Don't get so timid. Mawata-kun, you too.
I, I know.
Seems like you have something distracting you.
...Are you thinking about Miss Togasaki?
Women are psychic!
No, we all are thinking about the same thing.
About Miss Togasaki.
I wish... we could get to know each other more.

If... we fight for our lives today... I'll never get better grades than her.
Miss Ryokuya...
Me too. I wanted her to help me study, and talk about love... and so much more.
Miss Manabe.
Didn't you try to convince her? But you couldn't, right?
We're not as close to her as you are... but we will try and convince her too.
You guys...
Miwa... I want the power to protect you. Please, give us the power!
Ahh...! It's stronger than usual...!
This strong, power... Ahh! It's pouring in!
Burning emotions, will not be torn apart! I will defeat the evil with Bright Change!
Farewell is a sad rain, let's borrow the drops!
Last boss battle, I'm... a little nervous, Cherry.
Wake up and play this melody, Viola.

Cherry & Viola & Kuroaki are here to stay!
Cherry & Viola & Mawata-kun are here to stay!
Cherry & Viola & Kuroaki are here to stay!
(Miwa... if you can hear us... please, come out......)
...Hm? I thought I heard I racket. You must be here to die.
Miwa, I know you're here! Please, come out here.
There was never any Miwa to begin with! Your fight is with me! I'll go gentle, just as I promised.

I can feel the power... I think I can win this.
Let's hurry up and beat that sub-boss with bad hair!
True, I don't even want his mercy.
You sonsabitches! Don't get too cocky!
I'll show you my true power!

Battle: Alfman
Alfman is by far the most challenging of these fights yet. He's got all of his attacks from last time, though they do less damage and he has less health. It's vital your Revyateils are as high level as possible because his Simultaneous Swipe attack, which can easily do a few hundred damage.

Seeing Alfman's ass kicked was just as satisfying in here as it was in the real world. We were drained after the confrontation, though.

Ugh, Mawata-kun... wait, let us rest for a bit...
*huff * *huff * I, I'm okay! I can still go on!
(They both look exhausted. We might not be able to go on like this...)

The Cosmosphere is said to be a manifestation of a Reyvateil's mind, and that means everything that happens inside it has a reason. So when someone appears to help, that means no matter how bad things are you're still wanted.

Wh, what...!? Who are you!?
Bandeid: No, no, I'm not a weird stranger. I'm just here to slap you with some healing!
Slap... That sounds bad...
Bandeid: It's okay! It's okay! I won't hurt you ladies!
Whoa! My body feels lighter now!
System Message: Magic [Pretty Medicine: Lv 2] "Bandeid" acquired!
What is... this...? How are you...!?

Miros appeared.

Human... What is that?
I am Miros... I'm here to destroy this world.
Miwa, let's stop this. I know you don't want to do this either. You told me last night.
Shut up, human!
This is inevitable at this point... Yes, you are in my way... to destroy the humans.
If I kill you... I'm sure this voice will go away too.
Hate me! Hate me, who killed your friends! And try to kill me with all your power.
Fight the hate with hate. Demons and humans will never get along...
There, let's end this here. Die... human...
Miwa! Listen to me!
Humans... carry nightmares...
Miss Togasaki...?

Are you ok!?
I'm, I'm fine...
Big sister Viola, Miss Togasaki is not normal.
We can't even talk to her... We need to change her back to normal. Cherry, do you understand?
Yes! Let's get her without killing her!
Miss Togasaki, wake up! We are not your enemies!
You two... thank you...! Miwa... listen to our voices! Ready!

A horrible black shell surrounded her, and we were thrown into battle.

Go away!
Humans... kill...!
She can't... control herself...
N, no... I... don't know...! Run, Kuroaki!
Destroy... Every...thing!
We have no choice...! Ready!

Battle: Shadow Mir
We're up against the Shadow Mir form from way back in Phase II of the original Ar Tonelico. As a mercy it's lost the majority of its attacks, and this isn't a real serious threat like Alfman was. We get the ultimate expression of the My Slaves song for this, which attacks with Shadow.

After a fierce battle, it seemed as though we might have prevailed.

Oh, I can't take this! It seems sketchy, but let's get her!
...Leave... Humans!
No, don't get near her!
Miss Manabe! Miss Ryokuya!
Miwa! Wake up, Miwa! Can't you see that it's us!?
...Hate. Humans...kill.
...Miwa, why do you fight us? Why do we have to do this!?
Destroy... human...
Not all humans are your enemy. I'm sure we can understand each other somehow.
Ah... I...
What... did I...

Had we gotten through to her?

Help... Kuroaki.
Don't come... Don't... Please, kill me...
Kill me...

I just couldn't do it. We attacked each other, but at the last moment I dropped my guard.

Why... did you put your sword down...!
Fool! Let... let go, the sword...!
This... is nothing, because... you're hurting... more... right?
Let... go!
I won't.
Go away! Do you want to die...!?
Miwa... I want to be with you... You're crying.
Cry...? Me...!? I'm not!
You are crying. You were crying before. You were suffering...
...Mi...wa, what is your wish? What do you really want?
What does this knife mean...?

Let go... Kuroaki, let go! You.. .you might die...!
I'm sorry... I... don't understand your feelings. Why you're trying to kill me, and why you want to destroy...
I just know one thing though. I can say this one thing.
I know that you love me from the bottom of your heart. That's why I can open myself up to you too.
I can accept your everything, no matter what, because I believe in you.
My... everything......
Those words, and attacks. I know they weren't directed toward me. This knife, was not directed towards me.
Look... it's so deep through me, but I can't feel a bit of hatred.
I can't feel a bit of hatred from your hand that holds this knife.
It... doesn't hurt at all...
! ......
What is it that you hate so much? Which shadow are you chasing with your eyes behind me?
A shadow......?
You are looking at something else through me.
What hurt you so much? What did this to you?

I just want to understand...

Tell me.
What... is it...?
No... NO! No, no!
I hate, hate, I hate humans. I hate all humans!
I'll kill 'em, I'll destroy 'em! All of them who used and hurt me, all of them!
I can't... believe anyone. I can't forgive them! I can't!
Love? Feelings? I don't need them! I don't want them! I don't... want to know them!
I... I'm...!
I'm... I... am...
You were... suffering so much...
I'm sorry... I never knew...
How do you still believe in me!?
...What...? What happened...?

And the world went black.

Loading Excerpt- Hopes for the Green Land: Collected Writings, J.
Okay, um, yeah. That went in sort of an unexpected direction.

Good job. The story is over.
What?? No way...
He... hey! What is this stupid ending about!?
What, that was some crazy ending. I don't think I deserve complaints like that.

He came to me later on his own.

I said it was the end.
...It might be just my imagination, but... did we break your soulspace?
The entire world started to crack, and at the end, it was as if everything collapsed...
No it wasn't! It's not like you guys broke it.
...Okay. Then that's fine...
I'm sure you realized it, but that was just a story I showed you in my soulspace.
You can think of it like high level Dive Therapy. It's not wrong.
But it seems that level 5 is my max. My conscience doesn't reach any further. That's why it collapsed.
...I see.
I'll be honest. I didn't plan to let anyone see my real world from the very beginning.
But you guys just kept going through Paradigm Shifts. You reached my limit.
If you go any further, you'll enter a world where my true nature will be revealed.
So that's why it ends there.
Right. But...

I still don't know if I made the right choice here. But one thing I do know is how far off script we were there at the end...

...What won't be bad?
The world where you'll see my true nature. In other words, when you Dive from now on.
...Yes. But, there are a few conditions to this.
First, you will now enter by yourself. I can't take three people from this point.
Besides... now I know I can trust letting you in my yourself... So it's fine.
I see... Thanks.
Second, if you plan to Dive, I'm pretty sure you're going to enter a harsh world.
Whatever you find there, it's your responsibility to conclude it. Don't tell me in the real world.
That's obvious.
...Is it? You're going to experience a world beyond your imagination. I'm sure of it.
But, if you're shocked by it, you're not allowed to talk to me, or anyone else about it here.
If you do, I'll never let you in again.
Okay. ...Then, fine. You can Dive into the world beyond.

I don't know why I'm letting myself hope things will turn out well. I'm sure as soon as he sees the truth, he'll turn and run.

Is there an ending to that story in the Cosmosphere?
It ended didn't it?
Maybe for you, but Luca and Lady Cloche didn't think the same...
...And you, too?
Humph... Don't get so nosey if you're just watching.
There are many types of endings to a story. Happy endings, bad endings, and endings that don't make any sense.
A story doesn't continue after the ending, whether you like it or not.
Meaning, that story ended where it did. Just get over it.
...I see. That's a bummer.
I could make a sequel.
But that will only happen if I feel like it.

Loading Excerpt- Personal Logs, C. Bartel
Before I returned to the soulspace, I broke the news to Luca and Lady Cloche.

From now on, it seems I can only enter by myself.
Oh... is that so? That's too bad.
It was pretty fun, too.
I'm sorry. The game is really over with the last time.
But don't worry. The world Croix is about to see from now on is by no mistake a terrible one.
It's the end for you, but that also means you girls escaped with your lives.
...I-I see. Well... it's too bad for you, Croix.
W-will it be okay? Even if you're eaten, I'll do something to help you. So don't worry.
Well then, take care. I'll pray for your safety.
Good luck, Croix!
Y-yeah... But, how do I get rid of this fear?
Come on, let's go.

The man from the sea was waiting.

You are... always standing at the shores.
Yep, my name is Ayatane, Jacqli's guardian.
Just as I thought.
It doesn't matter now. I'll need you to make a choice right here.
This created world is almost at the end. It's going to be Mother's real spiritual world after that.
Oh, sorry. I call Jacqli, Mother.
Anyway, I can't let you come in if you're not prepared.
I'll need you to stop right here. If you don't want to completely face my mother.
To... face her, huh?
Basically, I'm asking for you to promise to love and protect her forever.
W, well...
I won't ask for the answer here. Think about it and give the answer once you know for sure.
Come to the Stonehenge once you've decided. I will accept your answer then.

He... he didn't ask much, did he...? What's a man to do?

I'll say this again. Your choice will greatly affect Mother's life. You must be responsible for your decisions.
...You understand?
Yeah, I do, I...

I just keep coming back to that overwhelming sadness that lay under everything. All that coldness, all that rage, but behind it all a crushing, lonely despair. I don't know how long she's been living with this pain, but I decided that she wouldn't have to do it alone anymore.

...You sure?
yes, I am. I, I want to live as Jacqli's partner.
And those words mean...
That you will accept Mother for who she is on every level.
Is that fine?
You know what will happen, if you back out later?
I know, I've decided.
I kept having this one thought while I was Diving.
All of it was a made up story, but I started to think Jacqli's real feelings are affecting the story.
If I could ease her pain... I want to be with her from now on.
I see. I will trust your passionate commitment, and I will open the gate.
You will see a completely different world from here.
You should know that you might really die too.
Well then, I'll just Paradigm Shift for you. I'm counting on you.

I don't know what's in store for us in the future, but I've made up my mind, and I won't turn back.

Feinne's Shouts From the Fourth Wall:
So it should be noted that in Phases II-V Croix is default Neutral to all three Reyvateils (Luca starts Good but goes to Bad for a while then Neutral again, while Cloche and Jacqli are always Neutral). Once you pass Level 5 and lock yourself into an ending you also get Good affinity as a reward. Since Croix is overall one of the best Vanguards and any Reyvateil you get past Level 5 is guaranteed to be way better than the others that pretty much means once you've locked an ending you should always use Croix+X as half of your party.

As we get ready for Level 6, I will also suggest you just keep in mind the themes we've dealt with so far and the underlying conflict that has kept coming up, because nothing comes out of nowhere in these.