Part 11: Chapter X: The Sorrowful Memory and Body
Well, we should get back to work. Making the Glorious Note should only take a few days.
Well, we're limited by the quality of ingredients, but now you should be ready to try and make that Dire Bomb when we find the last ingredients. I'm looking forward to seeing how powerful it is.
Sure! Leave it to me.
That's a great result. That's a lot of money for a stipend. We should spend it wisely.
Yeah. It's amazing how much progress we've made in such a short time. I really feel like we're doing some great things with alchemy.
Oh, and Escha, I saw Linca in Marion's office earlier. She was kind of staring off into space. She didn't look very happy at all...maybe we should pay her a visit.
Oh really? Yeah, let's go see her.
Hey, why do you look so down, Linca?
Marion's mad at me again... She always gives me assignments that are too difficult.
It sounds like the work you're given is very serious, Linca.
Basically, they're all unreasonable demands. I've only been able to complete very few of them. I thought I'd made the correct decision this time for sure...
I don't think Marion's being that unreasonable... What kind of work is she giving you?
Well, she gave me a mission to learn how to fill out paperwork.
You mentioned before that you're not very good at that.
Don't you think this is a good opportunity to try and overcome one of your weaknesses? We'll help you.
That's not necessary. I've decided to abandon the mission.
What? You...gave up?
Escha, everyone has their strengths and weaknesses.
Yeah... That's what I told you.
Doing work that you know you're not good at results in minimum efficiency. Therefore, the best decision would be to leave it to someone who's good at it. I told Marion as much. Suddenly, Marion became very angry... Where did I go wrong?
No wonder she got mad... You won't get anything done if you just ignore assignments you don't like.
I believe that it's impossible that i could be better than you two when it comes to filling out paperwork. I have my sword... But I wonder if that's enough to be of use to Marion.
Linca, I think she just wants you to overcome your deficiencies so you can get better at them.
If you reduce your weaknesses, you can accomplish new things that you couldn't do before.
Everyone has strengths and weaknesses... I can only see assigning this to me as reckless.
You don't have to be good at everything, but you should try to reduce what you're bad at.
We'll help you, too, so do your best to try writing some reports!
Ugh... Thank you, I'll give it a try...
(I'm not very good at this either, but... I'll do my best to help Linca!) I feel bad for Linca, Logy...
Hmm... I have to say, I agree. She really seems to be struggling with this. Unfortunately, this is something we may have to leave to Marion. We just don't have time to work with Linca about this. Maybe I can speak to her while you're synthesizing sometime.
Really? That would be great!
Alright, let's see what R&D is offering...
These look good. Getting more out of materials, and gathering them faster, will help improve efficiency while working and searching.
Alright, I'm going to try filling that Cotton Shirt assignment. I'm not sure which element gets the increased Defense effect, but I'll experiment a little.
That looks good. Let's see what happens...
Nice job, Logy! That's another down.
Might as well take care of patrolling the Southern Ruins. Apparently they need an additional survey to make sure the expedition team coming will be able to move in peace. Let's get started.
... Escha, do you feel like the...air...around here has changed?
I don't know...there's something different.
Escha, something is definitely coming! And it's big!
Music: Love the Dragon -Don't Kill the Dragon-
Unbelievable...it's a dragon!
It doesn't look that strong. Looks like he's pretty hungry, but... Let's make sure we don't get careless.
It's not attacking very much. Maybe it's just desperate and thought we were really easy prey.
Looks like it's down. Doesn't look dead, but it's definitely badly wounded. Let's get out of here before it wakes up.
I have to say, it was pretty rare to see a dragon. Dragons are very rare species. I've heard they were nearing extinction, actually.
Why did it come to attack us?
Well, they're a naturally aggressive species, but they mostly stay away from human settlements, as far as I know. It could be we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time.
I'm just surprised we managed to beat it... Actually, this looks like the Courtyard. Didn't we have to defeat a Nano Slag here?
Yeah. It's that green Slag at the top of the stairs. Let's go get it.
Just one Burst Craft? Those things are a lot more powerful than they look. Let's head to Sector 3 and finish the investigation.
Logy, I found another artifact.
Oh, great. I can show you how the Dismantler works when we get back.
Oh, it's Threia. If she's outside of her study, she has something to talk about. You can ask her about her studies, Escha.
I wouldn't say I was all that fixated on them, but what's wrong with having an interest?
What you're doing goes far beyond what you'd consider normal.
Well... That was blunt. Okay, I'll give you a lesson on what it means to be a historical researcher.
Oh, I'd actually like to know more about that, too. What exactly do you do?
As you know, the peple of the old era, or last generation, had very advanced technology. We have no idea how they made their architectural wonders...or created the strange powers within them. The apple orchard in this town is no exception. It takes advantage of the legacy of the previous era.
That's what Clone said, too. I was hoping she would tell me a lot more about that.
That person was no help. She's very tight-lipped. Probably prohibited to talk about it.
...I see. So that's what's going on.
Huh? What are you talking about?
Don't worry about it. It just means that it won't be easy to learn all about the old era.
And, it's your responsibility to reproduce these artifacts used in the old era. While my responsibility is to understand the reasoning behind these tools, cultures, and such.
Well, we have no idea how they lived back then. Their entire lives could have been different from ours.
Why would you say that? How can you say that they're completely unlike us? Uncovering the differences between their culture and ours helps us to understand the truth. So what if they had advanced technology? In the end, they might not be that different from us.
Even after we re-discovered alchemy, we've only begun to scratch the surface of the truth. We can barely reproduce some of the artifacts from back then. But I believe one day we'll surpass them. We can't follow in their footsteps. Whatever they did, it led them to their own destruction. Before our alchemists advance too far, we need to understand the lives of the people from that time.
I... I see... Wh-What should we do? Miss Threia looks really angry...
...You're the one who made her angry. You take care of it.
Hey, are you two even listening to me!? Oh, this is why I can't handle official workers...
I think we're going off on a tangent... Oh boy, this is going to be long. Escha, let's just get out of here. Threia looks distracted right now.
S-Sure...let's get out of here...
Ah, Clone... Is something the matter? Do you need something at the branch?
Oh, there's nothing bothering me, actually...
Really? Then what are you doing here?
Hm? What's the matter, Clone?
Oh, Logy. There's something I've been wanting to ask you.
Okay...? Please, go ahead.
How is Escha doing at her job?
Huh!? Y-You can't just ask someone that right out of the blue!
Whenever Escha returns from work, all she'll say is that she had fun. That hardly seems like a job... I fear that she may be spending her hours idling, or playing about... That's why I came to check on her.
That's not true! I'm working really hard, too!
I understand your concern, but she's actually very helpful. In fact, I owe her a few debts. Without Escha, we wouldn't be able to Synthesize successfully, which is key to what we do.
Y-You don't have to praise me that much... You're making me blush!
Oh, I see, then... If you say so, Logy, then I shall believe you. Well then, if you'll excuse me. Escha... Be sure not to cause Logy too much trouble, okay?
It sounds like she's just worried about you. That's a good thing, you know? Now that I've raised up your expectations, it's time to get to work. Let's not disappoint Clone!
Ahh! Wh-Why do I feel like you planned this all along...? Hey Logy, did you say all that to make Clone go away?
Not at all. I meant every word.
Oh... Oh thanks! I hope I can keep the hard work up.
I'm sure you can. Now then, can you give me that Spray?
We just take the artifacts we find on our expeditions, put them into the Dismantler, then...
It breaks down the artifacts into the ingredients that make them up. The reason we want to do this is to be able to use the ingredients, and the traits that are on them, and put them onto new items. We can use Distilled Water in more syntheses than we can use a Spray. That's basically it.
That really is incredible technology...
You made the Lightning Bomb, huh? Doesn't have the "Piercing" effect on it, though.
No... I guess I'll have to try again.
Looks like the highest Earth-elemental effect is what did it. That's one more.
I should be careful around this bomb...looks kind of scary.
What does that one do?
Well, my book says it digs into the ground and throws a huge amount of soil up at the target really quickly. Kind of like a small earthquake.
Let's take care of that Steel Skin in the mountain atelier. We sure have to do a lot for this assignment.
There are fallen walls around here, so you may be right.
Did you discover something new?
Hmm... Not yet, anyway.
Oh, I see. If you make any big discoveries, let me know, too.
We don't always find something huge. Have you found anything, Katla?
It looks like a plant from around here, but it's a little different from usual.
I know, right? It has a very strange air about it.
Looks like you found something interesting. This may be a rare item.
Yes! I found more, so I'll share some with you.
Thanks. It's strange, though, that there are so many plants growing in an abandoned building like this.
Now that you mention it... This area is very green compared to the other ruins.
Does it seem to you like the buildings here were some sort of plantation? There are many plants, and it looks like they've been growing here since before it was abandoned.
That would be a good explanation for why there are so many plants.
Yeah, right? Don't you think my intuition is pretty sharp?
You might be a better fit for this job than you realize, Katla.
Oh! I never thought I'd get such an endorsement from Logy. I might be able to get a job doing this, then.
Don't get too ahead of yourself. You have a lot of studying to do first.
I agree that investigative work could suit you, too.
Hee hee, thank you very much. Oh, there are strange plants growing over here, too!
Hey, don't run off! Ugh, she's so easily distracted.
I think her curiosity makes her well suited to this work, though. But it's definitely true that you need to be focused, too. Still, though, her abilities do surprise me sometimes.
There it is. Let's get him.
These monsters...look really dangerous...
Logy...what was with those monsters at the end?
I don't know, but we should probably get out of here before more show up.
Good idea... I'm still tired...
Music: Adventurer's Bolero
You travel around many different places, don't you, Harry?
Indeed! I've traveled far and wide, over mountains and valleys, from the far reaches of the east. I'm expanding my views by exploring various places and finding rare things.
Hmm, you say you came from the east? You've come from a very distant place.
What kinds of rare things have you found?
Let's see... Have you ever seen a ruined tower, reaching far into the sky? Taller than you can imagine, its top lost in the heavens... The fact that it has lasted for so long is a mystery.
I've never heard of any such structure...
Because of that, I've seen a forest so thick with trees that not a ray of sunlight can penetrate its top. I regret that there was no place to land my balloon. I would have loved to explore that place.
A dark forest... It sounds scary...
There may have been ancient ruins sleeping within the hidden depths of that forest. Doesn't the mere thought of it pique your scholarly interest?
You're right! Investigating a place like that would be very exciting!
Hey, hey, don't forget that it would be for work.
It doesn't matter! It's the best thing if an explorer, paid to explore, has a deep love for it. I've relaxed in natural hotsprings, nestled with a snow-blanketed Homunculus village. I've also seen mysterious, enormous bones at the ends of the desert. They were quite beautiful...
...Doesn't it sound a little too amazing to be believed?
You're being very skeptical, Logy! I think you should have some hopes and dreams about the unknown.
That's right. Logy, you don't dream enough!
Is it really that bad? I guess it would be fun to have some...
Hm, very well. Allow me to do something to invoke a sense of hope and wonder into you, Logy. I'll find a place that surprises you both. Please, prepare your minds for the grandeur of the world!
Do your best, Mr. Harry. I really do look forward to it!
...Just don't push yourself too hard.
What's the matter, Logy?
I still see a lot of dust and filth from your baking earlier. I really need to clean this place up.
I don't think it's that-
I just...can't work like this. I need to clean this place up. Escha, why don't you leave for a bit? I think Marion needed some help, anyway.
I think I'll take a quick break, and finish my remaining work later. Maybe I'll clean the place up a bit.
How did dust get in here...? There's dust in a place like this...
...What exactly are you doing?
Oh, I was just taking a moment to clean up around here. Wait, Branch Chief Grumman! Why are you here?
I'm making a regular check of all the departments. So, are you finished with all your work?
Uh, well, I was going to finish after I was done with this...
So you still have some left!
(Crap!) Yes! Sorry sir!
Listen, I don't mind if you take a break once in a while. Everybody needs to have a change of pace. However, you should try to time it for when you finish your work. You're still on the clock.
It's just, when I have a lot of work to do, I get this urge to make sure the workplace is clean...
Don't make excuses!
Sorry! I won't do it again!
Just be careful next time. I'll be taking my leave.
...That was scary. I should hurry up and finish my work. Escha is still going to be out for a bit...I need to hurry up and finish before she gets back.
How did she get filth everywhere? Escha is in a league of her own when it comes to messy cooking. But...I've made some good progress. I suppose I deserve a little break. Huh...? Is it a little dusty in here? I can't really remember the last time we cleaned. Guess I'll tidy things up a little, just as a change of pace. I was so worried about the cauldron area I forgot about the rest of the atelier. Let's keep going...
Okay, the dust is wiped up, and everything's been organized. I bet Escha'll be surprised to see this. Hmm... While I'm at it, I should probably clean the floor, too. If only I could use alchemy to clean, things would be so much faster...
I left everything in Logy's hands again while I was gone... I hope he's not too angry with me. R-Right... I'd better apologize to him!
Damn... I really wish she hadn't seen me with my shirt off.
Eek! E-Excuse me...! W-Were you changing!?
N-No, I was...moving around a lot, and I got sweaty, so... I mean, you were gone for a while, Escha.
I-I'm sorry! I was helping out Miss Marion, and I... Hold on, what were you doing in here, Logy?
Ah, right. I was cleaning the place up. It was a little messier than I thought, so... I mean, these stains on the floor look pretty old, and they wouldn't come out.
W-Wow, you were really thorough... You must really like having a clean workspace.
It's more like... I don't like to leave things half-done.
...! Did you see it?
Only a little... That's a huge scar, though... Did you burn yourself?
...Something like that. There was an accident, a long time ago.
I see... I don't really know what to say, but, I, um... I really don't mind it...
Sorry... I'm going to go change right away.
No, it's my fault for barging in like that... There's nothing wrong with having a wound or two. (But those burns looked really bad...) W-Whoa! The Atelier is so clean! Thank you very much...
...Sorry, I'm going to go get some fresh air.
Ah--- L-Logy, please wait...!
Please, wait--! Ah... I'm going to enjoy the fresh air with you!
...You don't have to do this, you know.
No, I can't let it end like that! C'mon, let's go...!
Fine, but... It really doesn't bother me. Please, don't sweat it.
Now, now, now, don't worry! Where should we go...?
(Man... I'm an awful person.) Okay... But Escha, I didn't want to keep it a secret. It's just...it's not a very happy memory.
I understand... I won't ask about it again, but if you ever want to tell me, Logy, I'm more than happy to listen to whatever you say. Does it hurt at all?
When I got it, it certainly did. Now, though, it doesn't. If my body gets really hot or something, that can make it start hurting again, but please, it really doesn't bother me. Don't worry about it.
Okay... How about we go to Katla's shop? I want to see if she's gotten any more customers.
That's fine with me. I'm sorry if you're worried about me, Escha, but please, don't. It happened a long time ago and I'd really like to forget about it.
Man, but this is...
What are you doing? Can't you see you're bothering Katla?
Y'see... My old money pouch broke after several years of use. I'm trying to find a replacement, but there's nothing out there that fits my budget.
I see... Oh, what about that one? It looks pretty wallet-friendly.
Is it that expensive? It seems a fair price to me...
You sure? Man, if it was a little cheaper, I might be able to afford it...
I told you already! I can't go down any more!
Oh, c'mon, I know you can do better...one more time.
No way...I couldn't!
Now, don't say that... You know I'm a repeat customer, so do me a favor on this one!
(I can't tell if he's shrewd or just stubborn...)
No, I get it... Fine. You can have it for the price you wanted. THAT'S WHAT YOU WANT, ISN'T IT!?
That's what I'm talkin' about. You're gonna grow up really pretty, young girl.
Wow, I've never seen anyone try to shop like that. You're a difficult customer.
Oh, c'mon. This kid saw me walkin' down the street and tried to sell me trash for the price of gold. I had to give her a lesson about how tough the real world can be. In business, the selfish always win.
Really? You're going to gloat about bartering with a child? If you're done, just let her go.
Okie-doke. See you, li'l cowpoke. I'll be comin' 'round your shop again.
Mr. Reyfer's really stingy... If he's a treasure hunter, why is he so broke?
He looks for treasure because he has no money, and he has no money because he's always out looking...
Oooooooh, I get it... Why doesn't he just get a job?
He just seems the type who doesn't want to do anything that doesn't interest him. I wonder if he ever has had a job... Anyway, don't we need to go get some Glass Cores from the Old Highway? I think that was our last assignment.
Oh, yeah... I think I saw some near the end of the old railroad tracks. Let's go!
That's that... Wait, something doesn't seem right...
Logy, something's coming! It's coming from the sky!
I've never seen a slag like this before...
Logy, what is this!?
Escha, don't worry. Just keep calm and we can win!
We need to be extra cautious with this one. He is really powerful, and this model of slag... I've never even read about something that looks like this.
Man this thing is dangerous...
I've got this!
That was amazing, Logy!
I'm counting on you, Escha. Let's see what you can do.
Nice job. Never knew you had it in you.
We got it!
Yikes...I never expected a slag like that.
Logy, you said the slags were made with alchemy, right? Why did the people of the past need dangerous slags like that?
I don't know... I can understand usings slags as weapons to fight monsters when they were exploring new areas, but slags like that... It's too much. Between this slag and that tank slag we encountered a few months ago, I'm beginning to wonder more and more about them.
Yeah, what kind of slags are out there? We've only seen a small part of the wilderness around Colseit... I'm starting to get scared about going further out.
Don't worry about it. As long as you keep improving your abilities, and making stronger items with alchemy, I'm sure we can handle whatever we find. C'mon, let's head back to the atelier.
This was a busy assignment. I sure am glad I had your help, Logy.
Don't mention it. Just let me turn in the last report.
I can't believe it's already been a year since we started working for the branch.
I was really afraid we weren't going to make it in the beginning, but I feel a lot better now.
I'm glad you're getting used to the job. How is your blimp holding up? Have you been able to use it?
Awin has been helping us maintain it, so we have no problem insofar as getting it to move.
Thanks to that, we can go to places that are really far away. I think we can investigate even further!
Ah, perfect. I was told that the blimp was in no condition to fly, so I'm glad it's back in service.
It's just... With that blimp we only have a limited range of areas we can investigate.
Yes, well... I suppose there aren't any issues for now, but we'll need to think of a solution to that.
Are you going to buy us a new blimp, Miss Marion!?
Even in its current condition, it's adequate for our needs at the moment.
Now, then... Let's shift gears and talk about hwo you did over the last period. Splendid work! The villagers gave us their sincerest thanks. I've been getting letters from them.
That's great! I guess they were able to pull through from their situation!
Helping one another is the key. As the R&D Division, I'm glad we could take on a variety of tasks.
It feels really nice to be able to help someone, and not just do research or investigations all day.
Yes, but it still doesn't make sense that their water would suddenly dry up like that...
All right, this is your assignment for the next period.
Are we going to investigate the cause of the drought?
That's right. That village supposedly had a huge water supply. Perhaps something happened to it. If this drought were to come to Colseit, it would be a huge problem for all of us.
Yeah, this doesn't sound like something we can ignore. We got it!
Also, I must warn you that several dangerous monsters have been sighted in the area. This investigation may be a tad dangerous, so I want you to exercise extreme caution.
Understood. I guess we need to prepare ourselves for what's ahead.
Heh heh, I can see your concern. Sending people out on missions doesn't leave many here to work...
...That's not funny, boss. Why did you laugh just now? What are you plotting?
That's awfully sudden. If only you'd told us sooner...
Oh, don't give me that. The process took a while, and I didn't want to tell you until I was 100% certain.
We're going to have another person on our team, huh...? I wonder what they're going to be like!
...Having said that, your new partner should be here any minute. What's the holdup?
The clumsy medic
Music: G-protein Covered Receptor
Ah, yeah, it is... Would you happen to be...?
Ah! Miss Marion! I, uh... I left really early, but I didn't know where the branch office was, so... I asked someone walking by, and the next thing I knew I was at the airship depot, and then...
Yes, yes, yes, before we get into the sob story about you're being late, you need to apologize. Right?
Ah... I, I'm sorry...
You're so helpless. Anyway, as this is your first day on the job, why don't you introduce yourself?
Y-Yes. My name is Lucille Ernella. I've been assigned to R&D. Umm...I look forward to working with you!
"Ernella"? Isn't that the name of that big medical company back in Central? Nah...must be a coincidence.
I want you two to take really good care of her, okay? I've got a meeting, so give her the tour.
Got it. We'll show her around.
Lucille, listen to these two, and learn how to do your work here. Whoops... I'm going to be late!
Umm, what do you want me to do now...?
Oh, uh, right. My name is Escha, and this is Logy, and... Listen, can we talk normally now?
O-Of course. What do the two of you do?
We're alchemists. Most of the time we're in the atelier, so you can come by there whenever you want.
Wow, you have an atelier, too? Could I go take a look at it?
Sure, but is it really that interesting to you?
I'm studying medicine, so I wanted to learn more about different herbs, and alchemy...
Interesting. But if you're studying medicine... Are you from Central City?
Yes, though my grades weren't stellar, so I wouldn't say that I'm fully-trained yet...
Ahahaha, don't worry about it. We're all still learning here.
I come from Central City as well. I'm sure you have a lot of questions. Feel free to ask us.
Y-Yes...! Thank you so much for the chance to work with you! I'll be the best assistant you've ever had!
Wow... All right, Lucille! Leave it to us! I'm going to show you EVERYTHING there is to see in this place!
Yes, Miss Escha!