Part 37: Despair itself is the only true joySurely it would be prudent to collect information before confronting Cyrum's "messenger of hope".
Creepy person... Did you see this person's face?
Guard: No, I just got a glance of him from behind. I couldn't see his face.
What! You didn't see his face!? Was he carrying a sword?
Guard: Yes, as a matter of fact, he was! And, this is going to sound odd, but it looked like he had these armored horns on his head.
There is no doubt! We have finally found Melfice! The demon shall pay ten-fold for his deeds.
Alright, so it's definitely Melfice this time. Fourth time's the charm, I suppose.
Roan! One of my guards reported that he saw a stranger in the King's chamber a while ago.
What!? Who might that've been!?
I don't know who it was, but he entered the King's chamber just a little while ago.
The king's voice is heard from the next room.
Just what are you going to do!? You cannot-- ugh!
Next door! Quickly!
VIDEO: Demon-Man Melfice (search for "Video ends." to skip screenshot version)
Demon-man Melfice! I have finally found you!
WAIT, Mareg! Melfice? Brother, is that really you?
How nostalgic. The long-lost brothers meet at last! What's wrong?
Looking for someone to hold your hand? Miss your older brother? Or were you looking for him?
It's no use. By now he's fully under Valmar's control!
Demon-man Melfice! How I have waited for this day! Prepare to DIE!
Yeah, it's an unwinnable fight. Even more unwinnable than Millenia was - he doesn't take damage at all. You can't even Cancel his moves, a property no other boss or enemy in the game shares.
This is my ultimate attack. The Wailing Soul Slash!
What is left for you now? Do you STILL believe those stupid pipe dreams?
Pipe dreams!? B-but you're my brother! How could you crush my dreams... and everyone's ideals?
Despair itself is the only true joy! Anything you do is completely useless.
Everything is pure fantasy. Fools... I once felt the same... before my rebirth...
You are no longer my brother!
Ha hah! Our hopes and dreams were cursed from the start! Let me show you. Yes. At that star-crossed place back home!
How could that... be Melfice?
Oh, there you are. You saved me. I must thank you.
What... should I do?
You yourself must decide what to do. With your powers, you can live well. It is up to you...
We... Just why must we... be the People of Darkness...
Kid, snap out of it! Don't get sofr on me. Not here, not now.
This sudden lapse of intestinal fortitude ill suits you. Perhaps my memory is faulty, but I recall a lad cut from stronger cloth.
Mareg proves once again that he would be a fantastic character if only the writers gave him more than one good line every three hours.
You are who you choose to be, Roan. Your ancestors are dead, and unless you want to join them right now, you'll let the past be.
Didn't you learn anything about the world when you were away from your kingdom?
You are right... I have... seen the world outside.
But... I see now that they are nothing more than names that keep us bound to things left forgotten. They are meaningless.
We must all think for ourselves... I have had it with blindly following tradition - that is not a life!!
Then what would you do? Choose carefully your course.
Come on, kid. Spit it out! You know the answer!
Friends, I want to change this kingdom so that it will no longer be bound to mistaken tradition.
I will take a stand. I will dispose of the lies and misconceptions, the false beliefs and empty ideas! We will have our lives!
Nicely put, Roan.
I shall remain in the kingdom. My travels end here...
The People of Darkness must've done some serious genetic engineering in their time. Seriously, they could've at least included that one female model with the cool hairstyle.
As you may recall, all of the flags in Cyrum actually display the coat of arms.
It has also been a long time since the people knew the true reason for this.
We do have a flag. Yet, no one wanted it to be seen.
It has been said secretly that our country hid the Gate of Darkness. Behind it was said to be sealed a terrible Legion of Darkness.
That Gate has finally been opened. However, its power was nothing more than a factory that makes meaningless robots. Robots to be used as weapons.
Those seeking the power of Darkness have already been driven away. The factory beyond the Gate of Darkness has been destroyed.
Why was such a thing in this country? It is because we are the descendants of those who made Valmar their leader. And god.
VIDEO: The King's Speech (search for "Video 2 ends." to skip screenshot version)
Citizen: How could such a thing be?
Citizen: Your Highness, what should we do?
Yet, what Valmar wants is not people, but only pawns - dolls to do with as he wishes!
We once hid in shame, and that kept us from dreaming of a better future. A future we could work towards, together.
But our past shall control us no longer, as we work with this new sense of pride to achieve our goals!
I shall now raise the flag again so that we do not forget the mistakes of our ancestors.
It's alright. This is something that I must do.
Up until now, I simply feared Darkness and did not attempt to understand it...
Now I know. We must see the world for what it is.
Video 2 ends. We regain control in the castle audience square - let's see how Roan's loyal subjects liked his speech.
Yeah, he's quite a guy, that Roan...
And please cover your mouth when you sneeze, I don't need any of your fluids on me.
Citizen: Oh, sorry. When I am moved by something, it makes me sneeze. It's just the way I a... Ah choo!
Citizen: All the more reason to celebrate! Tell you what! We need to have a great festival to honor the new king!
I'd say it's crazy enough around here. You party any more and people'll start collapsing left and right...
...Not like you had any part in your heritage... No need to worry about it.
Are you worried for Roan?
Nope. Nothing to worry about, that kid can take care of himself just fine... I have faith in his decisions.
Citizen: But now I don't have to be concerned about that anymore. We're charting a new course, led by a new king!
How patriotic you are. Roan, too...
I guess I'd better get with it.
All of the castle's flags now show Valmar's crest.
Also, unless my memory fails me, we never see Roan's father again. The man's not dead, isn't anyone interested in his well-being? Geez.
You must be especially happy, since you have served Roan so well. Things are going to get very busy now, for Roan.
Yes. You must continue to support and guide Roan.
Yes sir, you bet I will! I'll work harder than ever to fulfill my duties to Roan - I mean His Majesty!
We can't go talk to Roan, as the party assumes that he's busy and doesn't want to bother him, but he catches up to us as we leave the castle.
Though Melfice is of the same blood as Ryudo, I must spill it nonetheless.
My fate is to face my brother. I... cannot avoid it.
So, we must bid each other farewell. I apologize for not telling you of my heritage before.
Don't worry about it.
Yes, there is no need for apologies. You are still the Roan that we know - except you are a king now!
Have I ever needed them? Take care of yourself, kid.
See you, Roan! Good luck.
I shall miss you...
Lollipop Lane, Your HIGHNESS. Dry your eyes before your loyal subjects start to get ideas.
Truly, a king must guard his tears, for those he leads would turn them to other purposes. Remain ever steadfast.
... Yes, you are right. I shall work hard for my people! Farewell... my friends!
Across the castle bridge, the automata we rescued is waiting for the party.
What do you mean by free?
It means you can do whatever you want. Er... anything good, anyway. Plant a tree, kiss a baby... whatever.
So what should I do?
Fly a kite! Build a birdhouse! I don't know! Mareg, what're we going to do with her?
If you know not what to do, then the most prudent path would be to join with our number.
Forgotten her soul? Does an Automata even have one in the first place?
Okay, I have to comment on it once. The singular of Automata is Automaton. The game does not know this and we'd best get used to it.
In due course, this will be made known. She will accompany us until then, for likely her soul would not be found should she not.
Well, she's not a puppet anymore.
And what of your desires? Would you join with our company?
Hmm. What is your name?
Well then, Tio. Welcome!
... Yes, Master.
And so, Tio joins the party pretty much immediately after Roan leaves it. Someone in the thread requested an update on the party's stats and abilities, so I'll talk about Tio from a gameplay standpoint when I do that. Next time: we armwrassle.
- Concept art for Agear Town, the St. Heim Cathedral and the Underground Plant
- Roan's portraits (including one of him as king, which is why I cut this out of an earlier scan)
New Voice Credits: John Cygan (Melfice)