The Let's Play Archive

Atelier Shallie DX

by Jerry Manderbilt

Part 7: The Illusory Side of the Floating Ruins (DX)

Part XVIII: The Illusory Side of the Floating Ruins (DX)
Original Update

To the place of illusion

Oh, Shallies, hello. Perfect timing. I have information concerning Keith.

What?! Where is that geezer!?

Apparently there're ruins in the Dusk Sea called the Castle of Mirages, and he's headed there.

The Castle of Mirages…

I hear it's in the deep sea near the eastern continent. Maybe you should ask the people in Faav Village?

Got it! Thank you!

If Keith is heading to the Castle of Mirages… then I guess it really does exist.

He doesn’t seem like the type to waste his time looking for something he knows doesn’t exist. And if the Castle of Mirages is near the eastern continent…

Then Faav Village would be a good place to gather information and pinpoint its exact location. …So that’s where Keith is…

Tower of plants

Mm? Oh, hello, ladies. We meet again!

Sure… Hi…

Um, Harry…? Do you know a man named Keithgriff?

You're searching for Keith? Why?

We have business… Wait. You know Keith??

I've never directly spoken to him, but I have seen him before. Unfortunately, I haven't seen him around here.

Hmm, I see…

More importantly, have you visited the Heaven's Vine?

Heaven's… No…?

What?! How have you not heard of it?!

It's to the south of the town, beyond the cove. You should go there! Now! Go!

Wait a second! We're looking for Keith!

It's okay, Lotte. We don't have any other clues, so we can at least take a look.

Whaaaa! ...You seem like you've slackened up a bit lately, Stera...

Heh... I decided to relax a little bit... Thanks to you, Lotte.

Looks like we’ll have to get through these wrecked ships to get to the Heaven’s Vine.

Yeah. Still though, now that I think about it…no wonder Rosemia knew something about the Castle of Mirages. Collecting from places like this is her bread and butter.

And the Heaven’s Vine sounds like exactly the kind of place where we’d get to see the Dusk Sea from on high!

The long climb

Music: Sleeping Vines

This is the Heaven's Vine?!… It's amazing!

Are we… Supposed to climb this?

I wonder how far it goes…

Probably to. End of sky.


Hey, hey.

What is it?

Is it okay if I just fly up?

We’ll just have to see how far up this vine goes.

The hard way… Uu, don’t look down…!

Huh… Lotte, did you hear something?

Hmm… no, not really. Why do you ask?

I thought I heard a singing voice above us. Further up this vine…

Castles in the sky

W-wait… I need some time to get used to the height… Eeek, I looked down!

Shal, weren't you saying before that you wanted to fly?

I-it's completely different to fly yourself, and to be in a really high place!

Huh…? Hey, what's that building?


Yeah… That's probably the "Castle of Mirages".

Do you think Keithgriff is there?

How would we know?

You should check. It's up to you to discover things on your own. And if there's something you want, you need to reach out and grab it yourself. That's what it means to be a treasure hunter.

…Jurie, that is so cool!

…Sounds like random guesswork to me, leaving things to chance.

You shouldn’t be one to talk.

I'm sure Al would be happy if we brought this to him. Though what a place to find it…

Looks like we still have quite a bit of this overgrown plant to get through before we get to the Castle of Mirages…

Hmm… I haven’t heard that singing voice ever since we picked up that automaton and moved on. Could that have been it? Still… singing automatons? Keithgriff had an automaton with him, and she wasn’t the type to sing…

It’s really jarring to go from the greenery of Faav Village and the Heaven’s Vine to a desolate, barren shell of a village like this…

There are no humans who can live here anymore… Remember the assignment where you and I were sent to that village north of Colseit? Where the land went barren and the water dried up?

Yeah. Seeing this place reminds me of how the villagers all had to leave when the drought wouldn’t stop…

Ah, Shallie! Sorry if that reminded you of your village’s situation…

I-it’s fine… but that’s why we’re here looking for Keithgriff, right? If he has any information on how to stop the Dusk, or the droughts, then Lugion can be saved!

And just a little further in, we’ll be at the Castle of Mirages!

Still, though… I wonder how many abandoned villages like this there are around the Dusk Sea? And how long ago settlements like this were abandoned?

Ancient alchemy

Music: Illusions Shown by the Corals

We finally made it… The Castle of Mirages. Hmm, it smells kind of familiar…

Apparently, this used to be an ocean. There're signs of water and seaweed scattered around from long ago.

This was underwater?! Wow… Was the ocean really that big?

It was probably a beautiful place… I'm curious to know what it looked like.

These ruins… May have originally been created using alchemy.

What? …All of this?

Yeah... The floor and walls look a little familiar. It could be from a time period close to the alchemy I use.

The alchemy you use... Isn't that a new type?

Alchemy is all based off forgotten knowledge. The time when alchemy was flourishing lasted a long time. The alchemy you two use is close to the origin of alchemy, passed down through the ages. The alchemy I use was created after that era.

So what's the difference?

The alchemy I practice is easier to use, and designed for the general populace. That's why it's easier to learn. The alchemy you two use is greatly affected by natural talent, because it's much closer to pure alchemy.

I didn't know…

I hate to say it, but I don't have the natural talent you two have. That's why I decided to study this.

Still, it's not something that just anyone can learn by studying hard.

It's true! And you're helping us all out, Miruca!

Miruca, you're amazing. Everyone oughta know.

…Thanks, Jurie.

Still though, now that we’re here… it’s not like it’s any easier to get around in here than it was to get here.

Oh… An automaton! I'm sure Al would be happy if we brought this to him.

There’s no path to cross. I wonder what we could do to get across?

These monsters might have something to do with it!

Yeah. I get the sense that they’re here to stop us from reaching that room across the chasm…

Bingo! So we have to defeat the other two to cross!

The Alchemists of Dusk (DX)


Hmm… Why have you come to this place?

Ah, about my mom's illness… Thank you so much!


Yeah, it's related to what I asked before…

Oh, that. I see. I'm not a doctor, I haven't done anything worth your gratitude.


I'm sure you didn't come all this way just to chat. If you have business with me, be quick about it.

…We want you to lend us your strength, Keith.

For what?

You're investigating the Dusk, right? That's why you know so much about water sources and control equipment. We want you to investigate the droughts with us, and find the cause!

I have no interest in that. You should ask the government about your water sources and equipment.

But… Aren't the droughts related to the Dusk…?

I won't deny it. Droughts are just one of many surface phenomena.

Still… There're so many people suffering because of it…

Charity isn't my thing. I simply want to find the truth behind this world.

You can’t say that’s all, can you?

A-Ayesha!? Is it really alright to say something like that to him!?

Yes, I found some pretty interesting things.

What!? You know each other!? …And actually, you seem to be even closer than that!?

I see. I’ll listen to your report later. I’ll be finished here soon.

Now, Stera and Lotte…

Anyway, you’re saying that the droughts will lead us to the truth behind the Dusk? In what way?

U-um… We really wanted to help the people suffering from the droughts! That led us to running into this big thing called the “Dusk”!

We found that droughts aren’t the only symptom of the “Dusk” phenomenon happening to this world… That’s why we want to stop the Dusk, even if it’s only a little bit! Please! Lend us your strength!

…You don't get it. Listen, if you want people to help you, you need some kind of incentive for them. If you can prove to me that helping you solve these droughts will help me find the truth... I might help you.

An incentive?

My studies have shown me that the droughts aren't directly causing it. There is a chance my conjecture is wrong… There's no hard evidence to assemble a theory behind it.

And that means…

You need to bring me some information worth verifying. Though I don’t doubt it’ll be hard to find. Odelia, I'm returning to Stellard after I'm done here. I'd like some time to sort my findings.

Yes, sir.

Let’s rendezvous again about your findings in Stellard, Ayesha. And as for you two… I will come to you once you’re prepared to make your case.

Yeah, I am. And Keith’s the same as always.

The same as always…? He’s always acting like that!?

That’s right. It’s not like he’s not interested, though.

I-I see…

Keith is the type who won’t deal with you unless you’re serious, and he wants to work at his own pace…

Ah! It does seem like he’d say that!

But he feels stronger than anyone about where this world is heading. I’d be happy if you understand that.

I didn’t know…

Anyway, I’m going to go talk to Keith. I’ll see you later.

And there she goes… Ayesha isn’t just pretty, she’s also a very admirable person…

Yeah. I feel like I really understand what she was saying! …Although this is the first time I’ve actually felt like she’s Keith’s apprentice.

Me too… It’s a little surprising. …Hey, Lotte? Let’s do our best to have Keithgriff recognize us, too!

Of course!

But what kind of information would Keithgriff find value in… That’s a difficult question…


Oh, sorry. I was just thinking…

About what?

It’s not much… Do you remember how I told you about my dream before?

Yes, about wanting to fly.

Yeah… But that’s wrong. I just said that because I didn’t have another answer. But…

Your real dream…

Enough of that for now, though. What information do we have for Keithgriff regarding the Dusk or the droughts?

Hmm… We did just meet the Lord of Water, and Wilbell received her memories when they formed the contract.

I’ll never forget the words she had for us…

And we had every indication that she would be that hostile to us, just remembering the legends Teo told us about.

“A dreadful spirit who created the Dusk Sea”… but what if it wasn’t out of malice? What if it was because humans were misusing the water, abusing nature, and abusing her?

Abusing nature… anger toward humans… you know what else that reminds me of?

Escha’s story! That’s why Flameu took Geosis with her and abandoned the ancient humans!

It's easy to see some common threads here. Between the Lord of Water and Flameu, I think we have enough leverage to get Keithgriff’s ear!

Now, back to Stellard!

Hey, Miruca. What was it like studying alchemy in Central?

Pretty… Ordinary.

That’s not what I meant! After watching Logy, it seems like Central style alchemy is really difficult… It sounds like something you’d have to be suited for…

Mm, in that case… I understand the old style alchemy Shal uses, but I’m not very good at it… Central style isn’t based on being suited to it, it’s based on studying. But it’s better for attentive people.

I-I see…

Why do you bring it up?

I thought I could try and master Central style alchemy, too…

Even though you’re already good at old style alchemy?

Then, when I go back to Colseit, I could surprise everyone… But…

Escha, you should be more proud of your own alchemy…

I see… It’s for attentive people, huh…

I guess even Escha has things she worries about…

I know she’s our senior, but I still feel a need to help her… It’s a little strange.

Deeds of ages past (DX)

…Also, “The Lord of Water rules the water of the Eastern Continent.”

The “Lord of Water”? I thought you’d tell me something interesting, but instead you tell me folk tales?

It’s not just a folk tale. I witnessed Master Wilbell form a contract with the Lord of Water.

Hah. That fake magician likely just showed you a magic trick.

Master Wilbell isn’t a fake magician! Also… I heard it.

If we combine the Lord of Water’s words with Stera’s village legend, we can think of it this way… The Lord of Water ruled water in this region, but grew angry due to the actions of humans.

Then she either decided to stop controlling its flow, or stop supplementing it. …Just like how the administrator of “Geosis” in the Colseit region grew disappointed in humanity.

Hmph… Your reasoning is crude, but it’s logical, more or less. However, it all requires the assumption that this Lord of Water actually exists.

Alright then, how about this? I’ll send all the memories I received from the Lord of Water into your head, too.

Master Wilbell…!

…You’re telling me to play along with your games?

I don’t care what you say about me… But… These girls put a lot of serious effort into this… I’ll do anything to get you to help…

…Calm down, witch. I was simply stating my own thoughts on the matter. However, I never expected to hear about the “administrator of Geosis” from your mouths.

We heard about it from Escha. It was made by the ancient civilization to revive nature… But it’s also very sad.

Indeed. It’s proof of the hubris of humanity… Now then, what do you infer from all of this?

The Lord of Water grew disappointed by the actions of us humans. Out of all of it, the biggest factor was… “Selfish desire”… I think something was created with alchemy, only for the sake of humans…

There may be a hint buried in the earth… You may find the deeds of humans hidden below.

…Keithgriff, does this mean you’ll lend us your strength!?

Your deductions were enough to capture my interest. I intend to provide advice, as compensation for your information. I’d like to sort out the hypothesis I just came up with… Give me a little time. You could practice your alchemy while you wait.


We did it! We managed to persuade Keith!

That having been said… getting him to help out here is a huge deal in and of itself. You oughta let Solle know!

So close, yet so far away

Oh, there you are.

We heard there was a message from Central!

Yes, from their investigation. Apparently the cause of the droughts is underground in this area. The information you got on the water sources was extremely useful.

That's good!

Solle, what's underground?

We asked you here to find out.

Huh?! Us? But isn't this a really important, high-profile investigation?

Of course… And that's why we're asking you to do it. Nobody in this town knows more than you do.


Didn't you want a big job? This is perfect for you!

…Yeah. But I don't really care if it's a big job or not…

Are you kidding me? What changed?

I don't care about fame. The reason I took up alchemy and became Master Wilbell's apprentice… It was so other people would accept me… I wanted to find something I could do on my own… But I had an epiphany of sorts while watching Stera.


Yeah. You said your dream was to save your village, and become someone worthy of becoming the next chief. It sounds simple, but it's actually pretty difficult, right? I understand now what I want to do, and it's simple, too.

What do you want to do, Lotte?

Mm. That's so simple it's boring.

And that's totally fine! What I need to do right now is help save Stellard. I have to think about what I'll do after saving the city, though.

Wow, that sure does sound pretty heroic.

Hehe! Is there something wrong with that?

No, it's great! It sounds like a dream you'd think up.

I think so too… Lotte, you're so kind. I'm sure many people will be glad for your help.

Stop it…! You're embarrassing me… Anyway, we need to do everything we can for Stellard right now. Solle, what can we do?

The Union is using all its effort to find an entrance to the underground. Do you mind waiting for a little while?

An entrance?

Yes. The new theory says the droughts are caused by devices made by people. If that's the case, there should be an underground area people can enter. Maybe the device would be there… We're currently trying to find where the area could be, and how to get into it.

A human made device? Keithgriff said the same thing...


He said… The deeds of humans are buried underground.

Hmm… Raoul, mind if we call Keithgriff Hazeldine here?

Go ahead.

I'll have you two come back another day as well.

By the way, Shallies! Come over to my shop, I’ve got something special for you!

The Controller’s Friend

…I heard the key points from my apprentice.

Ah, Keith! Hello!

There’s no need for greetings. Show me this so-called “seed”.

“Seed” …Oh, you mean Flameu’s seed… Here you go!

…So this is the “seed” the Geosis Controller entrusted to you.

Don’t say it like that. Flameu is my friend.

…Oh? You call a Controller your friend? You say the same things as my apprentice. Are you trying to say that this Controller, Flameu, has a personality, and its own will?

Um… I heard that she was originally a girl who did research at Geosis.

A device that allows a human to function as a Controller… This could be comparable to Nio’s case. It’s possible that this girl called Flameu was part of an alchemist lineage.

Huh? …Flameu was an alchemist!?

That’s simply a rough hypothesis. But she needn’t necessarily have been an alchemist herself to research at a facility like Geosis or belong to an alchemist lineage. Nio, after all, was not yet an alchemist when I saw her last, but she’s still the sister of my apprentice, who synthesizes using the old style of alchemy like their grandfather before her… and Nio and Ayesha share their family name with the plant-filled ruins of an alchemic facility near their atelier.

Nio and Ayesha…? Keith’s apprentice…?

That’s enough about Nio. I want to hear more about Geosis, and about this girl who was involved with this ancient facility from the beginning. …What did Flameu call this “seed”?

She said it was “new life”. Also, “someday, beautiful flowers will bloom”…

I see. I’d like to borrow this “seed” for a short while. There’s something I must research.

Okay, go ahead… Wait, what!? You’re going to research it!?

There’s no need to worry, it’s a valuable sample. I won’t dissect it. I’ll treat it with care.

W-will it be okay…?

I’m a little worried, too… A-anyway, Escha! You said something about having something special for us?

Oh, that’s right! I have some recipe books for you. They’re pretty advanced, but you’ve both been growing so fast as alchemists. I think you can make good use of them!

Escha…! We will!