Part 4: Chapter 3
You wanted to see me, Father?
We haven't had a chance to speak yet. Titania told me what happened while I was gone...About the kidnappings.
I take responsibility for my actions. I'm ready to accept my punishment.
Wait, what am I saying?
I'm the one who should be punished...
I'm pleased to see that you are willing to shield one another. However... Regardless of your reasons, you disobeyed the orders of a superior officer. You are confined to quarters for ten days.
Rules exist for a reason, Mist. Men won't survive on a battlefield if they do as the, wish without so much as a by-your-leave.
...I understand. And accept the reprimand.
That being said, we've got more work than we can handle. Your punishment is deferred until things calm down.
And that's the story of how this won't affect the game.
Oscar, Boyd, Rhys. You come with me.
...and you, Ike. You're with me.
As usual, Oscar, Boyd and Rhys can be surgically removed from this conversation if they're dead.
I love Fire Emblem pirates so much.
I understand. We'll do all we can.
Feathering sea scum is like shooting apples off a tree. Let's do the job and get out of here.
Ho, Deputy Commander! You want standard thunder and lightning maneuvers here?
Er...Thunder and lightning?
Yeah! I crash into 'em like thunder, and Shinon rains arrows down on 'em like lightning!
What should I do?
Let's hold back and let Shinon and Gatrie soften them up. Once they've whittled down the numbers, we'll all rush the ship and wipe out whatever's left.
This is a solid plan and I endorse it. I'll be making one minor alteration, though...
From this point on, we are afforded the privilege of being able to use this menu before each fight. I don't think anything here requires much in the way of explanation, do you? The noted music track plays while you're in this menu. I think it's a pretty OK track, don't you?
Of course, we don't actually get to choose units at this point. We can, however, (somehow) trade items between those present and those not.
The Fire Emblem savvy among you will of course have immediately spotted something a little odd...
Shinon is another pre-promoted unit! Snipers are what Archers are when they grow up, so Shinon is quite a bit more badass than Ike and Gatrie. He's actually not all that strong for his level, but his real selling points are his above-average defences and high skill. Archers are... well, they're archers. They attack at range. Y'know, with bows? Shinon is our first taste of the sweet, sweet ability to attack from not-melee range, the perks of which being that, unless your foe is also a ranged fighter, they can't counterattack you, which is fortunate, because archers generally aren't all that for defence. Shinon be quite helpful, but of course you won't really want him to be eating up all your EXP. He brings us an Archer Band, which boosts Speed and Skill growths. He also has the Provoke skill, which has a flat chance of making enemies target him over other units - quite handy, in the right place.
Yes, we are fielding as many promoted as unpromoted units in this chapter! That's just great.
Gatrie, despite not being a pre-promote, is pretty damn awesome. He's got by far and away the most strength and defence of our non-Titania units, and a big chunk of health too. His drawback is, of course, that he's slow as fuck and not very accurate - although he's strong enough already to wield Steel Lances without penalty. He's a Knight, a class that's all about... well, basically, being a brick wall against which wave after wave of enemies might crash in despair. That Knight Band is good for Strength and Defence.
Before we begin the fight, we take Shinon's Archer Band and put it on Gatrie, and the Knight Band goes to Ike.
There aren't that many bad guys around, but that doesn't mean we're not going to be swearing and cursing in short order. Believe it or not, this mission is scary enough on Normal and on Hard actually requires a bit of luck... you'll see.
Anyway, here's what Shinon can do. IE, murder.
Naturally, he crits.
Ike isn't as beastly, of course, but makes up for it by dodging one of every two attacks. Helpful, since Rhys isn't around.
The other problem with Knights (besides their low Speed) is their low Move. Knights can't run quite as far as the rest of the group. He's really more designed to have the bad guys come to him. Since the enemies around him are chiefly axe-users, we equip his Iron Lance instead of the Steel to offset the accuracy loss.
Titania picks a spot out of enemy range, just to be safe.
I mean, to keep them safe.
When we end turn, something interesting happens!
Tricked ye? What a vile and nasty thing that is to be sayin'. Don't ye agree, matey?
Yar, that I do! There be nothing but honest pirates aboard this ship, missy.
You said you knew the whereabouts of my older brother. That's why I came all the way to your ship.
Aye, and we do know! He was on board for a while, and then...Do ye recall where he went, matey?
Yar, that I do. He was a penniless oaf, so we tossed his worthless carcass into the rolling waves. Yar har ho!
My... My brother? That's horrid!
Horrid? Did ye say horrid? Yer scurvy brother was the horrid one! He lost a game o' chance, he did. If ye lose, ye must pay...And the scallywag tried to cheat me! By Shanty Pete he did!
Arr, calm yerself, me hearty!
After all, his darling sister's come to pay us a visit. What say ye work off yer brother's debt?
What say I run you through with my lance and call it a day?!
Yo ho har! It matters not that ye be a pegasus knight, lassie.
A wee minnow like yerself is no match for us sea dogs! Prepare yourself, ye flying wench!
Pfff! I'm not afraid of you, clambake! If your axe is as dull as your wit, this will be over in no time!
Marcia steels herself for battle, and charges...
...into the opposite corner of the ship. Where she's surrounded.
Don't worry. It gets worse.
But before that, let's follow a non-incompetent fighter for a second; Gatrie, off of whom arrows bounce harmlessly.
The pirates, of course, all gang up on Marcia, since she's the only one in their range. She's no slouch, but almost all the enemies have the Weapon Triangle Advantage on her and we're still at the stage where that means something.
Incidentally, you may observe (if you're really sharp) that Marcia is being attacked from range here. Some of the pirates here have Hand Axes, which can be thrown from range as well as swung.
Fortunately, Marcia can dodge a few hits. That's not to say she will, and it's not impossible for her to die here if her luck fails her one too many times.
Meanwhile, Ike is being rounded on. A pirate dies, and two are crippled.
A pirate also manages to actually deal a point of damage to Gatrie.
So Gatrie doubles and kills him. Yes, the fool is so weak and so slow that his Axe slows him enough for Gatrie to double him. He drops a Vulnerary. A second guy also attacks Gatrie, but only loses half his health in return.
A Myrmidon attacks Marcia, which is silly, and almost gets him killed.
She's actually doing quite well. 2/2 attacks dodged, and some pirates crippled.
You might observe that Marcia has gotten herself boxed in. This is because she's surrounded by pirates because she was an idiot and started in a really stupid place, and also because IS's engine does not comprehend the concept of flying over enemies.
It is very much in our interests to finish up down here and help Marcia out. To this end, Shinon and Ike get to work.
Titania will be able to get there quickly enough to render assistance. She makes a quick stop on the way to murder someone.
The Myrmidon runs away and heals. One less enemy to deal with, I guess, even if it is the least threatening one.
Ike takes a single point of damage from a bow. It is sufficient to level him up.
I'm OK with this.
Not this, though.
She's pushing her luck, that one.
Aw fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck...
OK, points for style and well timed crits and everything, but...
Fortunately, it's her turn, and there's a gap! Surely s-
OH COME ON-
-at the very least, Marcia has a vulnerary and enough operational brain cells to use it when near death. So that's something.
Ike uses his newfound powers to double an archer with a Steel Sword. This also causes him to level up his Swords rank, to C.
Shinon, having nothing better to do, visits the nearby house.
His name is "Unknown". No way he's significant.
Oh...So it's plagued by pirates, is it? I see. That would explain why the people here seem so anxious. You appear to be a mercenary. Would I be right in supposing that you were hired to clean out the pirates? Here, perhaps you should take this. It might help you if you run into trouble contending with the pirates. But do hurry. I came all this way to see the world-famous fish market, and I'll never do so with those ruffians around. Best of luck to you.
He gives us an Elixir, an item that's much like a Vulnerary only not quite as useless. It's got three uses and will fully heal the a unit. It'll be very handy later on.
Damn your low move, Gatrie...
Instead, Titania moves in.
She opts for the excessive option.
The one with maximum twirling.
She sure does.
Well, looks like we're safe-ish for now.
Perfect. While the Myrmidon continues healing, his buddy fails to damage Marcia, and the other pirates stay put. Now all she has to do is run aw-
Time to employ the Big Armoured Distraction.
Not yet, we're not.
Do ya truly think ye can face me mighty axe and live?
His axe is the same Hand Axe some other Pirates have. He is not, in fact, the strongest enemy on this map - one of his buddies is.
He does four whole points of damage to Gatrie.
Gatrie distracts the other pirates too.
This is the dangerous one. He does six damage.
Not having learned from the first time, the Myrmidon attacks Marcia and gets reduced to one health again.
Marcia doesn't even do anything on her turn.
Not luck pushing, but number checking. Even if the first attack misses, Gatrie will survive as long as the second attack hits.
This poor fool has now completely exhausted his Vulnerary.
Oh fucking fucking fuck I did not consider that Havetti had moved and was now in range of Marcia. Fuuuu-
Starting to worry about Ike, too.
Havetti's Myrmidon buddy comes over and adds to our troubles, although Ike concludes his, in a manner of speaking.
Alright, it's time for my emergency plan. As is, Gatrie is the only person who can actually attack Havetti right now, but he can't kill him. So instead, he stands behind Ike...
...and gives him a shove.
Any unit can shove any other unit that does not outweigh them by more than two. Being shoved sends you one space away from the shover without using up your turn. In the right situation, Shove might just be a livesaver. Like this situation. Look what we accomplish by moving Ike one square from where he was standing;
Shinon can now move onto Ike's former location...
...and pray for a crit.
The second hit delivers. The pirate also delivers us a Hand Axe.
With the pirate gone, Titania can move in and attack Havetti, then move away.
This means Ike can now kill the boss, but before that, he has a little chat with Marcia.
Hey! Are you all right?
Don't give up!
Wh-who are you?
I'm a mercenary. The villagers hired us to get rid of these pirates.
Are you...Are you going to help me?
Of course. Let me and my companions take it from here. You can escape while the pirates are distracted.
Oh, hey, that would be fantastic! Thanks so much! I don't know what to say.
You don't have to say anything. It's all in a day's work.
Pshaw! You're helping me out! I should show my gratitude somehow.
That's...nice, but I can't think of anything off the top of my head. Just get yourself somewhere safe, please.
Well then...I'll come talk to you about repaying my debt later. What's your name, handsome?
Um... I'm Ike. I'm with the Greil Mercenaries.
Ike! Got it! And I am Marcia, a pegasus knight of Begnion. Don't forget me! All right, I'll be seeing you later!
NOW she runs away. What the fuck.
Fuck this mission and fuck you, Havetti.
Yahar har harrrr! Now I know yer tetched in the head, lassie! We show 'em our axes an' say "Arrrr," and the gold and grub come rainin' down. We'll not be givin' this up!
I see... Looks like we'll have to rely on force of arms, then.
He drops a Thief Band, which he was holding despite not being a character that can level up. It will boost Speed and Luck.
Oh! That is joyful news! Here is your pay, as promised.
Thank you very much. And if you find yourself in need again, do not hesitate to send word.
Of course, of course. All of you put on a most marvelous show--such combat skills! To be honest,I was expecting Commander Greil to be here today.
Okay, maybe Ike looks a bit young (on account of being young), but... seriously?
I apologize for troubling you. Unfortunately, Commander Greil had other pressing matters to attend to.
Oh, no. Don't apologize. There's no need. After all, you got rid of those brigands, and you did it impeccably well!
It's a fine compliment you pay, sir, but it was our pleasure.
As a matter of fact, you're more than good enough to be in the royal army if you so desired. Especially your Commander Greil. He's far and away better than most any general I've seen hereabouts. Er... What I mean to say is... Don't you think running off pirates is a bit... beneath you?
Don't get me wrong, now. You certainly helped all of us simple folk out. Even so, it seems to me the proper place for you and your Commander Greil is in the service of the Crimean throne! Well, that's what this old man thinks.
We--and Commander Greil--are quite satisfied with the work we do now.
You've nary a selfish bone among you. Well then, rest assured we'll speak again if any problems arise. Thank you again.
No, of course not. Our mission is complete, and that's all that matters. You did well today, every one of you.
I'm joking. J-O-K-ing.
Be honest. Don't you find the work we do to be a bit... disheartening? Unglamorous?
What? You too, Gatrie? What's gotten into you?
Please! Look, we're not a band of money-hungry recruits. We're professionals, and we're very good at what we do. Shinon and I have discussed this at length. All of this mundane mercenary work is unworthy of us. We're wasting our talents.
I see. You're telling me that you think Commander Greil is mismanaging us. Do I have that right?
Whoa! Hold it right there! That's not what I'm saying at all!
You seem so angry. It's not like you.
Exactly! Ike's got the right of it!
It's just that I... Look, we do good work, and we help people. I want you to be proud of that. I felt like you were saying work that doesn't bring fame and fortune isn't worth doing, that's all. Sorry.
No... you're right. We are the ones who ought to apologize.
Now that's a plan! I'm so hungry, I could eat a wyvern!
If you're looking for pride... I have it.
You and my father have kept this mercenary group together. And I'm... just... proud to be a part of it. That's all.
It's worth noting, I guess, that if either Shinon or Gatrie get killed, it actually gets acknowledged:
Where's Shinon going?
He needs some time alone. Usually, I make everyone report in, but... with what happened to Gatrie...
No matter how many times it happens, you never get used to losing a friend. Ike, this is... this is the world we mercenaries live in. Never lose sight of that one, cold truth.
Damn right I finally got a perfect turn bonus. Now if only I could spend all this BEXP...
Lv 1 Sniper
HP: 32 (75%) Spd: 13 (65%)
Str: 9 (65%) Lck: 9 (35%)
Mag: 6 (20%) Def: 9 (50%)
Skl: 15 (70%) Res: 6 (40%)
Move: 7 Con: 9 Wt: 10
Equip: Bows (A)
Like Titania, Shinon is a prepromote who should be mostly unused to begin with but who has pretty great prospects for a glorious comeback later. There's... surprisingly little else to say, really. He's got pretty amazing growths, as you can see, with lots of incoming Strength, Skill and Speed and easily enough Defence and Resistance to be getting along with.
Lv 9 Knight
HP: 31 (80%) Spd: 5 (25%)
Str: 12 (55%) Lck: 5 (25%)
Mag: 0 (5%) Def: 14 (60%)
Skl: 6 (55%) Res: 0 (30%)
Move: 5 Con: 12 Wt: 16
Equip: Lances (D)
Gatrie's sky high bases and good growths in Strength and Defence (and HP) ensure that he'll be laughing off damage like a pro while dishing it right back. His only real problem is of course his speed. He's not meant for dodging or doubling; he's meant to be a wall. And watch out for mages, too; his Resistance is never really going to amount to anything.
Next Time: The Standard Fire Emblem Plot finally kicks in!