Part 11: You can't go home again: I can't believe that you punched a slime so hard that it changed teams.
: Power of the fistbump, bro.
Anyway, it's time to move on. All signs indicate that our destiny lies to the North, so that's where we're going. It's worth while to take your time on the trip, mind you. That slime will never actually be very good, and without a few levels to beef him up he's pretty near worthless.
His cousin, on the other hand, is just great, and will continue to be great for most of the game. Even if you never put him in the front line, a Healer has enough curative magic to keep your party going for a long time. Monsters still gain experience even if they're in the caravan, which is great for getting your levels up.
I forgot to get a picture of his status screen. This Healer's name is Healie.
: Hey, I learned a new spell!
: Yeah, that's great. My childhood friend knew that spell, too. Are you sure you're not an innkeeper's daughter?
: Wait, this place looks familiar...
: The King of Reinhart has ordered that only when the throne demands may a ship enter this harbor. That means that not many, if any at all, ships come near Vista...
: Oh, God, I know where we are! That means Santa Rosa is just a little bit to the North. I thought we'd been dragged to the other side of the world, but we're almost home!
: Yeah, home, great...
: Here it is! Man, I bet old Sancho's going to be surprised to see me!
: What the hell? Where is everybody? What happened?
: This doesn't look good...
: The whole town's been torn apart! Who did this?
: But one day, soldiers from Reinhart came here and burned the village to ashes! How cruel! How could they?! They blamed their prince's disappearance on Papas...
: Oh... I do apologize... I don't know what came over me... Telling a complete stranger about Papas... What good would that do?
: They're spreading lies about my father! The bastards!
: What? You know Lord Papas? He was your father?! B... but... Come to think of it... you look like that boy he was with... Simon! Simon?! Is it you...?
: Yes, Ma'am. Welcome home, huh?
: But how... But why... Oh! Dear God!
: Wait, Bella? Like your fairy story Bella?
: She must be trying to contact the human world again.
: Wow. I'd just always assumed you made all that up.
: What?! You're Papas' son, Simon!! Oh my Lord!! All grown up... Look at you... And your father...?
: ... I'm afraid he's...
: Oh dear... such horrible things have happened... How hard it must have been... Come to think of it... back then, Papas mentioned hiding something valuable in the cave... It's been a long time and I don't know for sure what it was, but whatever it is is still there! Be careful down there...
: Oh, yeah, I remember now... You used to run interference to keep me from following him.
: Time to find out what Dad was hiding down here...
Repel prevents enemies from attacking you for a little while. It doesn't last long, and it doesn't work against tougher enemies. I never use it, but then again I have a fast-forward button.
: Did your Dad build pillars to decorate the entrance to his secret lair?
: Maybe? It kind of sounds like something he'd do.
As you might guess by looking at them, Brown is a pure bruiser. No skills, no spells, he just hits things real hard.
: Crap! I don't remember any dragons down here!
These things can catch you offguard if you're just plowing through the dungeon. They have a very high defense, and enough oomph to take out weaker party members like Slalin in a couple rounds. Magic is the way to go against them.
: I don't know why but I must defeat that!
: That's a decent chunk of cash. A little weird that Papas left his savings laying around in a monster-filled cave.
: Can you think of a safer place?
: Hah! Did your little girlfriend know how to do this?
: ... No. Congratulations, you have finally exceeded a little girl.
Bang hits all enemies, for a little more damage than Firebal does to one group. It's not even terribly expensive, making it a good spell for grinding.
: Hah! We got one! ... What was the point of that again?
Good old Metal Slimes. They're immune to magic damage, only take 1 damage from most physical attacks, have an insanely high dodge rate, and will run away a frustratingly large percentage of the time. But if you do beat one, they're experience piñatas! I actually got pretty lucky in these caves, and killed like 5 of them without really trying to grind for them. It's a nice boost!
Slalin picked up Expel, which just makes a group of undead leave a fight. Might be handy if you're struggling, but you get no loot or experience, so most of the time, why bother?
: Ick, I'm not stepping into this muck. I wonder how we're supposed to get to that chest over there?
: Hmm... Hey, does the ceiling look weird to you? Let's go upstairs for a second, I want to see something...
: This ground doesn't feel very stable, I hope it doesn't collapse out from under us...
There's actually no danger of falling, just stomp around up here a whole bunch.
: I think I heard something splashing below us, let's go check it out...
Easily one of the best quality-of-life spells in the game, Outside takes you out of a dungeon. Since whoever has this spell is basically a must-have in any dungeon, it's a good thing that Simon's the one to learn it!
Confuse targets one enemy group. Confused enemies act randomly, which can be entertaining, but it's probably more efficient to just kill them.
: Hunh, I guess all those rocks we knocked loose filled in the pool. But where did the displaced water go?
: Beats me. I didn't pay attention in physics class, either!
This lets you set the time to night at any time, if you're too lazy to go outside and pace until sunset.
: I'm taking that armor, dude. This loincloth is just not cutting it.
: Jeez, what is with this place, anyway?
: I think Santa Rosa was built on the ruins of some sort of shrine...
: Wow... I wasn't expecting this... It looks like some kind of workshop!
: Yes, this was Dad's, alright...
: ... Gross.
: It... it's addressed to me!
: You may already know this, but my quest began when a creature of purest evil kidnapped my wife... My wife, your mother, possessed a most wonderful power. I'm not sure what it truly does, but I know that it has some connection to the Demon world. I have no doubts that it was because of such power that she was kidnapped.
: Simon! You must find the Legendary Hero! From my research, the only person who may venture into the Demon World to save her is the one who can equip the Zenithian Armor.
: I traveled the world thrice, and all I have to show is the Zenithian Sword, much less any sign of the Legendary Hero!
: But Simon! You must do what I could not! Find the Hero, find the Zenithian Armor, then save your mother! You are our only hope!
: Hmmm... and so the plot thickens, eh? Man! The Legendary Hero, huh? Hmmm...
: Ugh, it's like a lead weight in my hand. I can't wield this at all! How about you, Henry?
: Nope. Guess I'm not the Legendary Hero, either!
: Hmm. Well, we've found everything there is to find in here. Let's get back to town...
: But it's said that such a sword can only be equipped by the Legendary Hero... I remember years before when papas was crying out in desperation that he could not wield such... So... that was the sword, was it? I had never seen Papas so desperate, or so bitter, before that moment.
And that's what Papas was doing in the cave each night when Simon was little: Trying and failing to wield the Zenithian Sword, cursing fate that he couldn't save his beloved wife.
: So, what do we do now?
: Well, we have to search for this Legendary Hero, of course. But first, there's a detour I need to make. I need to make sure that Bianca's still all right...
: Oh, man, I'm kind of nervous. What if she doesn't remember me?
: According to rumor, Reinhart has really gone down the sewer. But I didn't think it was so bad that a person has to escape...
: What am I to do now? With that selfish prince gone and his younger brother Dale, King, I went to Reinhart to become a soldier. But in truth, the one with power was the King's wife, the Queen. Oh, how horrible she is. It's the end of that country, it is.
: I'm not coming back 'til I'm rich and powerful he said when he took off. But look at him now. But I'm happy right now. I guess it's part of being a parent.
: A long time ago a King once set out in search of his kidnapped Queen. I never heard a tale of him finding her, so I suppose he's still searching to this day... How romantic...
: Just... just let it go.
: I... what? What are you asking? This isn't a yes-no question!
: Oh? Then what can I do for you? Tales about the Legendary hero? Just a moment...
The bunnygirl opens the counter for the increasingly perplexed Simon.
: Why don't you ask him?
: Ummm... Sure...
: Many many years ago, a Dark Lord named... um... well, a Dark Lord was awakened and set out to destroy the world. But a hero wielding the Zenithian Sword and wearing the armor, helm and shield of the Skies defeated the Dark Lord and saved us all. Hmm? And what happened to him after that? According to one story, he was said to have returned to the Heavens. But I'm not really sure. It was however, a very long time ago, so I doubt that he's still alive. But perhaps some of his blood line has survived...?
: Sounds like we need to track down the g-g-g-g-g-great grandson of a myth. No problem.
: What? Who said that!?
: Where'd it go? What's going on!?
: The profits were unbelievable! But once was enough and I will never set foot in that palace again. No money is worth that treatment!
: OK, I've put it off long enough... Let's go check on Bianca. The inn's right over here... ... wait.
: Actually, we came here seven years ago and bought this inn from a man named Duncan. Well, anyway... maybe if you stay the night here, something good will happen!
: That's super helpful, thanks lady.
: but it seems like Duncan had fallen rather ill and had to get out of the business. Now he's moved to a mountain village across the sea. Oh and how I wanted to see that cute little girl again. Ah... what can I do though...
: You can stop being a creepster, for one. At least it sounds like Bianca's safe. I was worried that those Reinhart bast... ... Oh, man, sorry, Henry.
: ... It's fine. Let's just go to bed.
: Good idea. I'm exhausted.
: Oh, you're up, Simon. Oh, me? I was just thinking about my castle... I guess I was kind of in shock about what that person told me about... my father's... death... My brother Dale is King now, but I haven't heard anything good about his reign at all... Maybe I should go check on it... Reinhart's East of here, ain't it...
: Hey, man. If you think this is something you have to do, I have your back.
: Oh well... better get some sleep!
The next day, Simon and Henry begin the journey to the Kingdom of Reinhart.
: By orders of the Queen, I cannot let anyone pass without the proper papers!
: *WHAP* Sure! Whatever, Tom!
: Owwwwww! That hurt! Who... who the hell do you think you-- Wait! How'd you know my name?!
: Hey, are you still scared of frogs? Heh heh... I still think my masterpiece was hiding those frogs in your bed... Heh heh!
: ...! B... But...! You're--!!
: Hey, you guys don't mind me. I'll just be over here performing triage on all the punctuation you're abusing.
: You betcha, Tom... It's me.
: Prince Henry!! You're still alive... Oh, it's been so very long! And oh, those were wonderful times! Not like now...
: Say no more, Tom... If her own troops speak poorly of Reinhart, it must truly be bleak times...
: Yes Sire...
: Will you let me pass?
: Yes! Of course, Sire!
: Oh yes, he made me cry back then... but now it's all a fond memory. I really missed him.
: Oh, c'mon. I'm pretty sure that making royalty cry is some kind of capital offense.
: God, those things creep me out.
: Oh, yeah? Heh heh, check this out. Here, boy! C'mere, you can do it... Just a little bump...
: ... That's just wrong.
Slime knights are great. They have good all around stats, they can equip some of the best stuff in the game, and they get a good mix of spells. I usually have a slime knight in my party all the way to the endgame.
: Man, it's been so long...
: To finance such actions, taxes have become unbearable for the people, who can barely afford to eat.
: I used to be so proud of our nation's motto...
: Of course, kid. God knows I've been hungry before. Here's five gold.
: Oh, thank you so much! I'll never forget your kindness!
: I'm so hungry...
: Stick with your sister, kid, take care of each other.
: This is it, Henry. Are you ready to do this?
: Not really. But this is something I have to do. Your dad taught me about responsibility, it's time to live up to it.
: ... Right behind you, bro.
Next time: Reinhart castle!