Part 21: Episode XVII: What Are We Doing Now?Episode XVII: What Are We Doing Now?
Music: Another Guldove
Alrighty then. Since we have deduced there is nothing that can be reasonably done to help our Aussie acquaintance, Kid, umm... It seems things have screeched to a bit of a halt in regards to any sort of goal... Huh...
Serge and company find themselves in the shanty town fishing village of Guldove, home of the CHA family and a number of demi-humans. Unless the party decides to take up a life of fishing on the El Nido strait, we may need to find transportation off this island.
Unfortunately, the only available boat currently docked in Guldove belongs to the rammer Korcha, who currently hates our guts. Terrific...
Speaking to the merchant right next to the dock and agreeing to trade causes her to make an extremely creepy request after conducting business. She apparently wants us to bury a bone...
A pelvis bone, to be exact... I am...I'm not even going to ask...
"Hey...!? That's right! My favorite dish is Termina's famous squid gut pasta!"
"Yeah...might be a bit hard to enjoy that with you know...the whole lack of a stomach...or tongue...or any parts that would need nourishment..."
West of the docks is the local tavern. Here we can peek in on the local physician getting boozed up at a half past noon and blubbering to a waitress. Stay classy, Doc.
"Nothing has changed at all by studying medicine... Man, I am so powerless...!"
"...So are you going to just give up on this life?"
The waitress Orlha drones on for a while about not dwelling on the past (as Doc is apparently a really incompetent doctor) and how everyone respects him for at least trying and blah blah blah sappy optimism.
Doc decides to stop getting shitfaced and smashes his glass against the wall as he is apparently an angry drunk. Well, hopefully he can pull a deus ex machina to save kid out of his ass. Or at the very least not try to stick Serge with the hospital bill after she croaks.
Above the bar is ladder to the residential area of Guldove. Assuming Serge woke up in Korcha's house earlier, we ought to head east from here in order to find the twerp.
Yep. This looks familiar. Kid took a dirt nap right around here. Let's hope we don't walk in on the dork angrily beating off or anything.
Entering Korcha's house...
"I don't want nothing to do with you. Get outta here."
"Ah, so you will help us?"
"What?! Didn'tCHA here what I just said?"
"Yes. You do not want nothing to do with us. Double negative, hotpants. Look it up."
"Lend you my boat? Ha, no way! Why should I lend you my boat? Sorry, pal, go find someone else."
"Welp...I tried to be civil."
"Hold it right there!!!"
The large woman, from Serge's bedside earlier, wanders in...
"Don'tCHA start arguin' with me! Aren'tCHA gonna help your friends when they need you? I thought you were actin' strange when you came home, but I don't remember raisin' my son to be so inconsiderate!
Korcha has a minor temper tantrum and stamps his foot a few times...
"In the first place, this has got nothing to do with you, ma. Why should I lend my boat to guys who abandon their own partners!?"
"Hey, wait a second. I can't letCHA give up on your partners. I don't see that blonde girl in red. What happened to her?"
The scene fades out and the party explains that Kid is pretty much totally boned and there is fuck all to be done about it...
"That explains why you were upset when you came back... You're a helpless boy aren'tCHA? This boy only said he doesn't know what to do. Don'tCHA think that's a natural response? You were just sayin' that out of spite What would you have done if you were in his shoes? Come on, speak up, Korcha."
"Yeah, I managed to form a complete sentence... Try again, bloomers."
Korcha sucks up his pride and gives a half assed apology since his mommy chewed him out. But, he's still a total dick about giving up his boat and refuses to join the party to look after it. Since a wooden raft cobbled together with scrap is worth big bucks on the black market and all. So, mama CHA takes matters into her own hands.
"You never stay put, so it's a good time to do your chores. Go take care of Mel while you're at it. Do you understand?"
"Oh gawd! You gotta be kiddin'..."
"Macha it is!"
Macha points us in the direction of something that...might vaguely move the plot from its place dead in the water and says she'll wait for us out by the boat dock.
She also gives us a new dialogue frame to celebrate our new friendship. Ugh...I think they actually sell this exact thing in a gift shop down the block... I know it is the beach and all but it is also North Carolina. There aren't even any palm trees here! Why are you tourists buying this tropical crap...?
Korcha is condemned to a life stuck in his home babysitting and being a raging fuckface for the duration of the game. Such a pity. He was such a likable, well designed, and intriguing character...who uses a fishing pole in battle... Yeah... A fishing pole... That's even worse than Leena's kitchen utensils. I've heard of people getting killed by a frying pan or a rolling pin. But a fishing rod...? Maybe if you have gills.
Oh Korcha, you are the worst... I wish we could leave Poshul with you.
In the lowest level of the CHA household is Korcha's adopted sister Mel, who also will not be joining our party thanks to taking the "ditch Kid" path. She is, just like Korcha, remarkably useless.
Really, the only thing the saving Kid path had going for it was recruiting the fairy, Razzly, who was one of the more kickass magic users in the game. Unfortunately, neglecting that quest has resulted in a less than pleasant fate for her...
It's implied she gets eaten by a hydra... Oh well! I hope you are all happy.
Before we can leave the colorful seaside vista of Guldove, the party must make a pit stop at the Dragon Shrine on the western edge of town like Macha suggested.
Entering the Dragon Shrine...
"Welcome to the Dragon Shrine. I presume that you have come to this shrine seeking assistance? Please don't hesitate to ask Chief Direa for guidance..."
"Umm...yeah, chief... The plot has kinda stalled out on us... Think you could jumpstart things a tad? Be as cryptic as you feel appropriate while still leaving a key word clue or two."
"Hmm? There is an odd wind that is whirling about. I have heard that such wind-bearers appear at times, but..."
"Oh...yeah...that.... The thing is I am sort of...well dead...in this dimension at least..."
"...Do you speak the truth? Hmm, I see... So that's why you have an odd air about you. As for a way to return to your original world, I do not know. But there are always reasons why such phenomena occur..."
"There wouldn't be a plot otherwise...?"
"You say that as though there is one right now..."
"The key that connects you world, to this one... Shall we say, it is a 'Dimensional Distortion' of sorts? One must choose their own path. But as long as we are human, one will sometimes become lost. I pray that your journey be blessed by the guidance of the great 6 Dragon Gods..."
Well, that was less than helpful... Let's see what the shrine maiden has to say...
"There are islands named after Dragons...and numerous Dragonian ruins and artifacts. You may have encountered some of these already. The most famous are the islands of the Sky Dragon, the Earth Dragon, and the Water Dragon. And the ancient ruin, 'Fort Dragonia,' that lies to the east. Of the many Dragonian ruins, Fort Dragonia is one of the few that is still fully functional."
"Say...this Dragonia Fort place...it doesn't happen to be in some sort of valley or canyon? And surrounded by dragon statues, does it?"
"The name Fort Dragonia would indicate as much...yes... Have you journeyed there before?"
"Well, I did have this weird dream where I broke in there and fought robots and murdered Kid. Remind me to never eat sushi before going to bed again."
"...Moving right along."
"It was given to our ancestors by the extinct Dragonians as a symbol of our friendship. It has passed down through successive shamans, but..."
<sigh> "There is always a 'but'..."
"Their intent is unknown, but if they plan to activate the ancient ruin, a great disaster shall come about."
"Our people have been searching for it, but...we have found no trace of it."
"Maybe they just want it to be in a museum?"
"If such were to occur, it would be a great relief."
"I was...not being serious..."
Steena offers an info dump if we want to learn more about this elemental dragon business, as well as a few other local questions. Though, it's mostly rephrasing what has already been said. But, hey... Might as well get a faint inkling of the world while we're in the neighborhood.
"What's the deal with the dragon gods?"
"These Elements are... White, black, red, blue, green, and yellow. Each one pairs up with another to maintain the balance which the natural world relies upon."
"The gods that represent each Element are called the 'Dragon Gods.' Since they symbolize the powers of nature, they are also commonly referred to as the 'Gods of Nature.'"
"Oh, gawd. Don't tell me this is going to turn into some hippie pro-environmental, anti-industrialism story..."
"If the sun is white, the shadow is black... The flame red and the water blue... Green are the leaves of the forest and the blowing winds. Yellow are the forces of mother earth."
"That's nice... So...what's the deal with this Frozen Flame thing? Kid seemed pretty intent on finding it."
"But, there is something about flames in the oral lore of our tribe I do not know if this is related to the flame you speak of, but allow me to share it with you."
"Yeeaaaaaa... That's okay. I am pretty sure there is crap about fire in every civilization's lore. I was just throwing it out there..."
"Ah...so your ancestors just plagiarized Nietzsche and swapped out a few words. That's very helpful."
"In an old poem of El Nido there is a phrase that refers to the evil sealed away by the 6 Dragons. This phrase follows after it: '...the evil flame that sought to engulf the world...'"
Right... You know, I will be absolutely shocked if the game eventually makes us murder all of these elemental based dragon gods at their elemental oriented islands at some point. It's too outlandish to even consider the notion, really.
Exiting the dragon shrine...
That is almost it for Guldove outside of one last detour. After speaking with the sage, Doc will no longer be drowning his sorrow in cheap whiskey and smashing shot glasses into walls for dramatic effect, leaving the bar free to explore.
There is a dwarf in here that will wax nostalgic about the Hydra Marshes before the whole genocide of the titular animal of the region and will hand over a helpful trinket to aid us should we ever return there.
That looks less like a bell and more like a dried turd nugget... But, who am I to judge dwarven culture?
Returning to the dock...
Welp, that is it for adventures in the boondocks of Guldove. It was about as exciting as one would expect from a place called "Guldove" I suppose...
Onward to vaguely plotted adventure!
Macha Official Art - The antithesis of female JRPG characters.
Mel Official Art - Wearing twice as much clothing as her brother.
Steena Official Art - Why yes, her eyes are phasing through her hair.
Music: Another Guldove
- Macha is a shortened version of her Japanese name...Mamacha... Yeah...that's all I got...