Part 45: Update 041 The Two Towers and Castle HawethornUpdate 041 The Two Towers and Castle Hawethorn
So, we're just going to wander around for now?
It appears so.
Anything in particular, or are we just filling out Duncan's maps?
Hey! My maps have proven their usefulness!
Proved, not proven. Especially if you're speaking in the past tense.
But isn't the suffix -en a proper means of identifying things that happened in the past?
Both -ed and -en are valid options, but I believe the difference is that between a past participle and a past indefinite in nature.
Are you sure about that?
I have to agree with Peregrine here. It's the difference between 'I Proved' and 'I have Proven' that makes the sentence.
I think we're here.
So begins the long walk to the end of the hardest quest in the game. With poison. It will get worse.
And here's the first tower. Want to take bets on whether it's Adyin's, or Khoth's?
Wow! We haven't seen slimes since.. like... forever!
Place seems empty.
But at least it isn't quiet. There is flowing wind.
That's good, because we are beset by invisible foes!
Here's a hint. When fighting enemies such as these Shades here, make sure the game is playing sounds. Why? The game auto-centers on whatever is active, and while I normally play as maximum speed (sounds off, no draw lines, general faster-ness), this will let you know exactly where the enemies are located so you don't have to wander around to find them.
I only discovered this technique in this battle.
Those are the worst foes we can ever encounter?
Worse than a dragon?
We are supposed to disarm the trap first.
Puts the Royal Seal in.
Oh, I hope it's not broken.
One way to find out!
HAH! No Lever shall bar my way!
You know, there is that secret room on the south side. Perhaps we should check that out before we leave?
One down, one to go.
At least we have the Orb.
Except it's a dead end!
This is much better.
That's a lot of lizards.
Three groups of Lizards, and a group of demons all in this little patch of caves. They all stay to fight.
I don't need Demonslayer for this!
Now, Khoth's tower.
I have a bad feeling about this.
I agree. I took a peek through the keyhole, and it looks like several Haakai are waiting there for us. Let's try that secret passage to the north.
I feel like someone walked over my grave.
Perhaps. But it is not here.
Alright, stealth time.
There's no way for me to dispel the barrier here. And attempting to run through would be.. painful.
If I ever find out what Graaaghnah-wheep-NI NI-bong" means in Dragon, I will be famous beyond death."
"That was quite...anticlimactic."
"It is because we were prepared for this endeavour. We may not be so lucky in the future.
Seriously? Why do this?
I believe this defence was set up by the Empire. Not by anyone of Exile.
Well, we have the authority to go through.
Here's what I don't get. You need the Royal Seal several times on this trip. You are told about it by Erika at the start that she needs it to send you to the final battlr, so it's not like it's a surprise that you need it. Hell, Aydin tells you straight up it's a required piece for his puzzle. And this barrier is just arbitrary, which lets you by if you have the Seal! It just seems... redundant.
I will never let the Orb go. It's just so precious!
Guys, Art's scaring me...
Last chance to back out. Take it or leave it. Note, you can't use the Orb to cross the Lava to trigger the event, so take your necessary damage and get on with it!
Right. The Royal Seal can be used to bypass the majority of the magical defences around the Castle, while the Brooches will keep us on target.
Humph, the peon can think.
Give us a little bit. What time is it up there anyways?
... About ... ah, yes, I see. Now would be a bad time.
He would be in a meeting right now with the Generals about the state of the army. Going in there, we would have to fight the heads of the Armies as well.
That would be... bad.
Right. So let's wait a couple hours, then give it a go.
Lit by magic, the campfire crackled in the eternal twilight of the caverns. Around it, the six held their repose in their own manner. Ember lay on her stomach, entranced by the flickering flames as she kicked her bare feet in the air. To her left, Peregrine was also staring into the flames, but for his slight frame, he was meditating instead, preparing himself for the battle about to come. Rook, the eldest of the group simply played with his mace, the giant-slaying Smite, his thoughts private. Karmas, like Peregrine, meditated before the fire, though his musings were more martial than mystical. Duncan slept.
Art, the leader, she tried to rest, though it eluded her. Every so often she glanced up to check on Erika, the mighty Incantrix that would see them to the heart of the Empire, and, if they were successful, see them out.
At her side, the Ravage Knife still gleamed cruelly, the prize from the Demon Fort almost as valuable as the Vhanatai blade that she examined for any imperfection. Despite its long burial, and constant battles since, the poisoned blade was still immaculate.
Leaning back, she looked up at the distant roof of the cavern. The little place they were in, ringed by lava as it was, and bordered by an impassable series of rocks to the Northern Waters was as distant from any form of human habitation as seemed possible. And here, if she closed her eyes and let her mind wander, she could forget, perhaps for a minute, that this was her fate, her Exile. It had to be done. There was no choice.
She wanted to go home.
While I feel ashamed at the method of our arrival, I must agree that this opportunity cannot be passed up.
I wanna set fire to his robes!
Such an assault... what would be the repercussions?
Don't worry too much about that. Hell, they'll probably think it was some internal matter.
I agree. I doubt they would attack Exile for this. They do not think that it would be possible.
ARE YOU DONE YET?
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"Please let this work."
"WHERE THE HELL ARE WE?"