Part 82: A Quest I Couldn't Refuse
Chapter 60 - A Quest I Couldn't Refuse
Music - "War and Peace"
Download (Thanks to Grawl)
Previously on Divine Divinity:
I need you to break into Sir Patrick's house and steal his title deed.
What happens if the people you lend money to are unable to repay you within the time limit?
Hmmm... Sorry, but I'm not interested in a loan at this time. Perhaps later.
I have the title deed you wanted. Do you have any idea what I had to go through to get this damned thing?
It was a diamond ring. Jenna's ring. She'd had it for as long as she'd been in here, something to give her comfort. And now she didn't anymore. Was it taken from her, or did she drop it on purpose for me? There was an inscription on the inside: "Jenna - my love, my life, my everything."
I'm going to get you out of here, Jenna. I promise. I'm on my way. Just hold on a little bit longer.
Chapter 60 - A Quest I Couldn't Refuse
When I came too, my head was throbbing, and I didn't seem to have any magical power. It wasn't blocked, I just didn't even have enough magical energy left in my body to lift a grain of sand. I heard talking in the room, so I kept my eyes shut. It didn't fool anyone.
"Ahhh... you're awake. Good."
I opened my eyes.
I was lying on the ground in Sir Patrick's library, clad only in my robe. Everything else I had was gone.
I was pulled to my feet by two of Sir Patrick's men - the same ones who had ambushed me at the Ducal Inn.
They were smart enough to hit me with a weapon that drained away my magical energy. I can't cast anything until I get my hands on a potion.
Sir Patrick. What do you want? Why did you abduct me?
Me? Err... No, no, I don't know anything about this! What makes you think that?!
Sir Patrick made a slight nod to the man with the purple hat. He slugged me in the gut hard. I gasped for breath.
You said as much yourself. Five days ago, you boldly made a declaration in front of a whole room of witnesses that you robbed the vault of one noble at the behest of another. Do you remember now, or were you just too drunk?
Yep. I'm in deep trouble.
That fact didn't stop me from digging myself deeper, however.
That's nonsense. Where did you hear that rubbish?
Let's just say that some of my employees have 'ties' all over. It wasn't hard for them to find out that you were a member of the Thieves' Guild.
Thieves Guild? Never heard of them.
Another nod, another iron fist slammed into my stomach.
Oh, I wish you wouldn't make me do that. I find the whole process rather tiresome and vulgar. But I warn you, if you insist on maintaining this pitiful charade, things will not end well for you.
Does it make a difference? You're going to kill me anyway?
Kill you? Of course not! I'm not a savage. At most, I'd have my people chop off both of your hands.
He took a sip of his tea, to let the severity of the situation sink in. It worked.
Not my hands... I don't want to lose my hands.
It isn't important whether or not you admit stealing the deed. I know it was you.
After another sip and a pause, Sir Patrick spoke again.
However, I am inclined to be lenient, under one condition...
"Yes?" I said, a little too eagerly.
You must set things right. Sir Dante hired you to steal the deed from me. Now I insist that you steal the deed back from him and return it to me. I've put your possessions securely into my vault, which - at great personal expense - I have thoroughly re-secured.
I relaxed a little.
You don't have any particular loyalty to Sir Dante, do you?
The man is a horrible old bastard. I needed a favour from him, that's all. I swore no oath of loyalty, nor did he ask one of me.
Excellent. Here are the terms: You retrieve the document by sundown today, and I will return your belongings, and even let you leave here uninjured.
That's correct. Any attempt to leave town, or to acquire potions to rejuvenate your magical energies will be met with swift death. I have enough friends in the guards to ensure that your murder would go tragically unsolved, like so many others. Your fall from Duke Janus's favour ensures that your former status as bodyguard will not win you any allies. Here, you'll probably need these.
He tossed me Finnegan's magical lockpicks.
Sundown... but I have no idea where Dante's secret vault is?
Dante is a heartless man. He cares only for his money. He wouldn't lock it away somewhere inconvenient to enter.
He keeps his money close to him, eh?
There was a locked door in his outer office. But that's where his secretary works.
I'd get moving if I were you, Mr. Liro. You don't have much time.
I had nothing on me except the one pair of lockpicks.
I suppose that the stores aren't going to give me a mana potion on credit, savior of the dukedom be damned. I don't have time to rest before sundown either. Think, Jeremiah, there must some good options!
What about the teleporter?
Even assuming that I'm not shot dead as soon as I get within ten feet of it, I don't have any teleporter scrolls, or my magic map. Unless you know some other way, I can't use it.
"About the Game" posted:
I'm lying. With an already-activated teleporter, the map shows up automatically, even if you take it out of your inventory.
Yeah, I'm sure I could make it into the sewers. I don't even think they'd stop me. But with all the lizards down there, I'd never make it out, not without my gear or any magic.
"About the Game" posted:
Because I never put more than a few points into Constitution, Jeremiah's armor literally is most of his hit points. Without it, many bosses in the game could one-shot him.
Going to the city watch is right out. Kratus has never liked me, and if I explain to him why Sir Patrick is threatening me, he'll probably lock me up. Gods know what'll happen to me if that happens. It's a coin toss who'd get to me first, "Lady Elona", or Sir Patrick.
You could ask the Thieves' Guild.
I don't think it's a good idea for me to show my face there anymore. I've pressed my luck to the limit. Sooner or later - probably sooner, Rob is going to discover that his dagger is missing and so is Penumbra, and I'm the new guy there. Even if they don't suspect me of that stuff yet, Sir Patrick and Sir Dante are some of the most powerful men in the dukedom. I doubt that the guild would be willing to stick their necks out to clean up a mess I made before joining.
What about just walking out the front gates?
I think I might make it ten feet. Twenty, if I'm lucky. But because Sir Patrick has taken everything from me... Oh no. No, no, no!
I searched myself, almost in a panic. But it was fruitless. It was gone. They'd taken Jenna's wedding ring, too. Everything else Sir Patrick had taken could be replaced, albeit at great time and expense. But Jenna's ring... it was the only piece of her I had left. I couldn't lose that.
I am totally SCREWED!
"Is that a statement, Silver? ...or a request..."
"Pen!" I exclaimed. I was glad to see a friendly face.
I didn't think you'd be walking out of there on your own.
How'd you find me?
I saw some of Sir Patrick's goons dragging you out of the Ducal Inn.
In broad daylight? The guards didn't see that? Not the Thieves's Guild?
You don't understand. Everyone saw it, even the guards. That was the point. I wouldn't expect much help from the law. Some are on Patrick's payroll, and others are too scared to cross him.
What are you doing here?
What do you think, Silver? I came here to save that handsome rear end of yours.
My rear end very much appreciates it, Penumbra.
"You're wearing a lot less than the last time I saw you," she said, in a tone that suggested that she was just fine with that.
Yeah. Sir Patrick has all my stuff, and I'm not allowed to leave town until I steal back the deed from Sir Dante's house.
Why are they asking you do that?
'Cause I'm the one who stole it from Sir Patrick in the first place.
You sure do lead an interesting life, Silver.
Heh. You're one to talk, Pen.
Do you have a plan?
It's straightforward enough. Sneak into Sir Dante's house and break into his vault. The first problem is that I'm not that great at sneaking. The big problem is that Sir Dante's secretary Randell works in the room I suspect the vault is in. Obviously, I can't break in with him watching me.
Would you like me to give you a hand?
I would very much appreciate it, Pen. I think that I can get Dante's vault open, but I need a distraction.
Do you have something in mind?
Actually, I do, but we'll have to get some stuff to make the plan work. We'll need some paint, some sugar, an old suit of armor - preferably leather - and do you know anywhere in town where they have live pigs?
Or, I could just distract him for a while when he leaves to go on an errand.
Yeah, but what are the odds that...
I trailed off as I realized that she had a knowing smile on her face.
Are you sure you can keep him distracted? I'm not sure how long I'll need to find the document.
Just leave this to me, Silver. I'm an expert at distraction...
She trailed after Randell. I didn't waste any time, and entered Sir Dante's mansion.
I pretended like I was expected, in case one of Dante's servants saw me, but luckily I never met one.
I approached the door with the noticeably fancy lock, but I stepped on a squeaky floorboard.
Is that you Randell? Are you back already?
I held my breath and hoped Dante was too pre-occupied to chase after noises.
... Must be my imagination.
I spent several nervous minutes working on the expensive lock, hoping that Dante was reading or napping, and hoping that Pen could keep Randell busy, but finally, I got the lock open.
I turned the knob quietly, slipped inside and then shut the door equally quietly.
Well, this seems to be the right room, at least.
I had to be extremely careful. Without my armor or magical protection available, if there were traps here, any mistake could be fatal.
I gingerly lifted the lid of a chest, prepared to hit the deck...
...then I breathed a sigh of relief.
I'd better get out of here as soon as possible.
I grabbed the deed and shut the chest lid.
I was thankful for an uneventful escape. It was just in time too, as up the street, I saw Randell suddenly turn and speak with frustration to Penumbra.
...for the LAST TIME, Neither I, nor Sir Dante are interested.
My employer is not someone who takes 'no' for an answer easily.
Well, he'll just have to get used to it. Good day, miss.
Penumbra spotted me and I gave her the thumbs-up. She stopped trying to negotiate with Randell and came to me.
That man certainly is quite stubborn, he can't see a good offer right in front of his nose; I'm not sure what Sir Dante sees in him.
It's probably because he's stubborn that he makes such a good secretary.
I take it you got the deed, Silver?
I did indeed, Pen. This should mollify Sir Patrick into not cutting off my hands. Thanks.
She started walking off. I wasn't entirely sure of what to make of her, or her reasons for helping me.
Why did you help me?
You saved my limbs, I saved yours. I call that a fair trade.
...Is that the only reason?
She smiled cryptically. "You know where to find me, Silver..."
Uh, no actually, I don't!
She didn't reply and ran off down the street.
Ahh...Mister Liro. You've returned. I hope this means that you have MY deed with you?
Perhaps... but I've been thinking? What guarantees do I have that you won't just kill me once you get it?
I'm not the one who consorts with assassins, Mister Liro,
My blood froze for a second before he continued.
...that would be Sir Dante. I am a businessman. I understand that your theft of the deed was not personal, but a matter of business. Once my property is returned to me, I shall have no further quarrel with you.
"You abducted and threatened me. Would you really return my things to me, knowing that I might take that personally? I know you heard what happened at the Ducal Inn, the last time... I took something personally," I said all this evenly, in a non-threatening way.
Sir Patrick considered this.
I believe that you are a rational person, Mister Liro. One who understands the mathematics of revenge. I have told you plainly that all I want is the deed. Once you return it to me, you will have your possessions returned. Neither of us needs the attention, nor the trouble which would result from a battle in the middle of the city. Now, do you have the deed or not?
I reached into my pocket. The thug with the crossbow aimed more carefully, and the two beside me also tensed up. I froze and slowly pulled out the deed.
Here you are. I assume our business is done?
He snapped his fingers. I tensed up, but it was only two of his employees bringing in a chest.
Your belongings are in there. Have a good evening, Mister Liro.
I opened the chest and searched through it with a desperation which surprised Sir Patrick and his bodyguards. At the bottom, I found it. The ring Richard had given Jenna. "Jenna - my love, my life, my everything."
Everything else was also accounted for, including the damn bottle of wine which had gotten me abducted in the first place. Sir Patrick was right. I wanted this to be over with more than I wanted the hassle of burning down his mansion with everyone in it.
I sighed as I saw how low the sun was in the sky.
Another day gone. Tomorrow though, it's time to get back on track and see about finding that Holy Amulet.
Next Time: The Dark Forest
Behind the Scenes
A funny thing about Chapter 60. It was more of a concept than a planned thing. I know what I want to do with it, I hadn't actually written the specifics until after committing to the idea after the end of 59.
If it wouldn't have been an extraordinary amount of work in Photoshop, I'd have been tempted to have Penumbra accompany us on some quests. But alas, I'm not quite that nuts, and it wouldn't have been able to last for the rest of the game anyway.
This is the last time I had planned to see Penumbra in the canon of the story, but it's not the last time she actually appears in the game. There is one additional update I could do which has her in it. I wasn't planning on including it as definitive canon, but because of your votes, it will be in after all. Chronologically, it will happen after we get all the CORRECT ingredients for Corinna's summoning ritual.
What's fake in this update?
- This entire update is fake. The people following Jeremiah in the previous update, the ambush, losing your stuff, Sir Patrick's quest, Penumbra helping you, breaking into Dante's vault. None of that happens. I just don't like Sir Dante much, and I thought that there was a certain beautiful symmetry in stealing the deed from Patrick to give to Dante, then Patrick turning around and getting you to steal it right back. Also, the symmetry with rescuing Penumbra and here she pays back the favour.
- Any shots in Sir Patrick's house with more than one person were fake. Any shots with Penumbra or Randell were fake.
- The shots of Jeremiah breaking into Dante's treasure room were real. I used "Swap Places" to move Randell far enough that we couldn't see each other. I loaded from before doing Dante's quest, I got the deed, broke into his treasure vault and put the deed in one of his treasure chests. No Photoshop required.