Part 3: Sword of Spirits
This ancient temple, sacred to the people of Sacae, has long been known for its powerful bond to the world of spirits. Before starting their journey, our travelers come here to pray for their well-being.
: There is a sacred sword enshrined in an altar east of here. The people of Sacae go there to pray for safety at the onset of a long journey.
: Oh! How quaint!
: The teachings of Elimine have the most followers in Elibe. It is nice to see that, here at least, the ancient customs are still observed.
Oh boy, here comes trouble.
: Threaten me as you will, but I'll not give up the Mani Katti. The Mani Katti is a sacred blade, under divine protection. It cannot be removed from its place of rest!
: You're a fool, old man. What good's a sword if you don't use it?
: Use it? In combat? Sacrilege!
: Sacrilege? I am Glass! The gods fear my name! My swordplay is peerless! And if I want this sword, then this sword I shall have! Now get out of my way!
Yeesh. Someone thinks a little highly of themselves.
True to his word, he shoves the priest against the wall.
: This sword was made for a swordsman of my skill. Hmm? What's this? I can't...draw the sword...from its scabbard?
: The spirits of the blade have judged you. You have been found wanting. They have rejected you.
: What? Listen, you senile old fool, if you value your own life, you'll get out of my sight!
I'm not exactly sure what happens here, whether the priest flees and locks himself in, or Glass himself locks the priest up.
: I care nothing for you! I'll tear this altar down stone by stone!
The NPC woman finally realizes that hey, it might not be a good idea to hang out here.
: Are you headed east? To the altar?
: Yes, we are indeed.
: Then you must hurry and help the priest there. I saw a band of local ruffians head in there not long ago. They seemed intent on stealing the altar's sacred sword!
: The Mani Katti? They're going to steal it? I cannot allow this to happen!
: You look like a virtous group. Please help him!
: Lyndis, what are you planning?
: If you hope to go to the priest's aid, you'll need to prepare.
: You're right... Say, Art. There are some homes to the south of us. Perhaps we should go there and question the residents.
Alright, so this is our map. First things first, let's see if we can mine any useful information out of those homes to the south.
Oh! You're going to help the priest! Well, perhaps you could benefit from sonething I saw earlier... The bandits may have the main entrance guarded, but one of the altar's walls is cracked and in poor repair. You might be able to create another entrance by hitting that section with your weapons. We're all counting on you!
Well that's certainly useful information. The next house:
but they're difficult to traverse. If you're riding on horseback, you can't cross them at all. Be careful.
This one's not entirely true. Once they promote, Paladins can move on the mountains, but only a space, so I imagine it's actually just something ridiculous like a 7 movement cost per tile. For all intents and purposes though, he's right. Horsemen are going to have to find another way around. Final house:
It's called the Mani Katti, blessed by the spirits. According to the priest, the Mani Katti is waiting for its rightful owner to appear. It's so odd, don't you think? The idea that a sword can choose who will wield it?
Well then. You get no points for correctly guessing what happens at the end of the chapter.
Not much exciting this turn. Everyone moves north and east.
Kent damaged the bandit enough for Lyn to get the kill. Sain moves south to the forest, and Kent heads for the wall.
Time to finally make some headway on this chapter. Kent moves north and attacks the wall.
Sadly, the wall's got quite a bit of girth to it, so Sain kills the left bandit and Lyn moves over to the woods next to him.
Kent keeps on chugging with the wall, and Lyn kills the bandit Sain weakened, netting another level.
Not bad at all. She'll be a killing machine that falls over to a stiff breeze in no time at this rate.
Finally, Kent breaks through for us. Sain puts himself in position for the lower bandit, and Lyn moves up next to Kent.
Kent moves aside for Lyn to clean up the bandit, and Sain kills the lower one for a level.
Ugh. What a waste.
Everyone's dead so it's time to kill the boss.
Glass is a mercenary, a balanced sword unit, which means we can finally put those lances to use. Sain moves in to attack first.
: What chance do you think you have against me?
Mercenaries (and their promoted class, Heroes) have some of the best attack animations, flipping all over the fucking place.
Sain's strike leaves him at 9 HP, so Kent comes in for the kill and gets a level of his own.
Come on guys, you can do better than this. Glass is nice enough to drop an extra Vulnerary, and Lyn seizes the throne to end the chapter.
: I'm Lyn, the chieftain's daughter. Are you hurt, sir?
: Thanks to you, I am unscathed. You have my gratitude.
: And the sword? Is it safe?
: Yes, I have sealed the sword safely away. Until I remove my spell, the sword cannot be drawn. Now, as a token of my gratitude, I shall allow you to lay hands upon the Mani Katti. Touch the blade's pattern, and pray for a safe journey.
: Oh, thank you so much!
: Ah. Hm... It's the power of the spirits. Lyn, they have looked into your soul, and they call out to you.
: What does that mean?
: You are its rightful owner. You are to wield the Mani Katti.
: No... I can't... I couldn't...
It is the sword's wish. If you require proof, draw it from its sheath.
: I never dared to hope that I might meet the wielder of the Mani Katti in my life. I am indeed fortunate to see your sword reach your hands.
: My sword?
: You face a great many ordeals. Grip this sword, and meet your destiny head-on.
: This is all so unbelievable. Perhaps the most famous sword in all of Sacae... in my hand.
: It's not so strange. In fact, many legends tell similar tales... Special blades all over the land call out to their proper owners. And yet, when I saw you draw that blade, Lyndis... I felt something extraordinary. That sword was waiting for you. You were meant to draw it.
: Stop it! I... I'm nothing special!
: Think of it this way: Some weapons feel more comfortable in your hand, right? Well the Mani Katti itself feels very comfortable with you. Does this make it any easier for you to accept? It doesn't appear that either of us can use it.
: It...does feel right in my hand. A blade that only I can wield. That seems reasonable enough. I can understand that. Look at it Art. This is the Mani Katti. This is...my sword. I must care for it well.
Elsewhere in the world...
: Madelyn's daughter is still alive?
: Uh... Yes, Lord Lundgren. The girl is traveling with Kent and Sain. What are your orders? If we let them be...
: Bah! I've heard that northern Bern is full of bandits. She's just a girl. She'll not survive her journey here.
: His life must be ended quickly. The poison... There must be no blunders.
: Yes, m'lord. He suspects nothing and continues to drink it. The marquess's death, no doubt due to "sudden illness," is not far off.
: Heh heh heh. Soon...