Part 17: Episode XIV: Alternative Medicine
Music: The Enchanted Sanctuary
Our new objective is to find the proper spritnite vein for us to dip Setsuna in for Kir to do some kinda mumbo-jumbo to heal her. You can see a spritnite vein up to the left of the party.
Unfortunately, this is a weak ass vein, unfit to shove a main character into for plot related reasons.
Indeed, most of the veins in town are ill-fit for slamming Setsuna into for some traditional medicine of the forest folk. The proper vein is not hard to find. But while were in the area, we can take a minute to duck into a nearby tent to find...
Our band of stalker merchants have already made their way into town. You know, if they didnt bother to mention that it is, in fact, specifically the same weapon and spritnite merchants that are following us around... even to remote villages deep in uncharted territory and past hidden paths you have to No Clip through... this wouldnt come off as quite so creepy.
Weppy & Tallis shop is really jumping the gun here by offering a brand new assortment of weapons fit for the next chapter. Sheesh, Setsuna hasnt even been available to join the party here since the last weapon upgrade offering.
We can offload all our ill begotten spoils from the mountain trail for another 7k cash influx and to unlock some new Spritnite for the party. Endir picks up Wall, which buffs defenses for magic and physical attacks if we need to go on defense. Again, Endir is great at everything.
Aeterna picks up Dream Shatterer, which deals out a small AOE physical attack with a chance to inflict Stun and Confusion for good measure. Radical.
Nidr grabs himself Condense, which increases the potency of a single item. I think. Thats what the description says. I dont think I got the right materials for this one the first time I played and hell if this chapter gives me much of a chance to test it out.
Word around town is that these folks have kind of a bummer life and dont get out much. And leaving like Kir did (for like two days) is kind of a big deal for anyone here. But beyond them, we do have another recipe in town...
If you can give me those, Ill give you something great in return!
I dont want anything with Twisted in its name. Brings up some bad memories of this birthday story I once heard.
You guys sure are kind! Here you go, this is for you... Smells pretty good, huh? Ill tell you how to make it, too, if you want! Hope you enjoy it!
Did you just... pull a bowl of this from behind you...?
Sure... Why not...? Ive gotten meals from weirder places.
We get Twisted Potato Soup which increases XP, drops, and light-elemental resistance. Throw this shit directly in the nearest trash receptacle.
Anyway, back to our previous objective. We could check out all the spritnite veins in town and hope for the best. Or we could go to the one thats on an elevated plateau surrounded by totems and...
Well what do you know? Weve hit the jackpot. Too bad it wasnt in some awkward, inconvenient place like in front of the towns communal outhouse or next to a tent where a pair of wood elf folk were having loud sex unaware of the JRPG goings on.
Ive got a sixth sense about this kinda thing.
Tch. You just read the prompts until you got the right one.
And youre telling me THAT doesnt count?
Theres definitely a powerful spritnite vein running under the ground here! I can sense it!
Everyone shuffles off to retrieve Setsuna from the phantom break room zone where off-duty party members hang out...
No part of this seems safe.
Now if I can just do the incantation...
Hold on a minute... Please dont tell me you dont know the incantation...
Oh, no, no! Itll be fine! Dont worry!
Oh no, you dont or oh no you do?
Wait... Now Im turned around cuz you used a double negative in your first question.
No I didnt.
Could you all be quiet and just give me a minute, alright?!
Some time passes...
Some more time passes...
So you ever thought about getting a mask?
What? No. Why would I do that?
Well youve got the hoodie thing going on and ehh...
What? Whats wrong with my hood? Its a good hood.
Yeah, sure. But I feel like those assassin jerks from a few years back kind of ran the hood look into the ground.
Im not trying to make a fashion statement.
Sure, sure. But at least a mask would cover up those scowling eyebrows youve always got going on. Real turn off.
...Excuse me? Theres nothing wrong with my eyebrows. My eyebrow game is on point.
Yeah, if your game point is resting bitch face.
*glares* Can you go talk to Nidr or something?
*stops pacing and stares at Kir and Setsuna* ......
Nah, he seems busy.
More time passes...
A turnip knight named Steve? Look, you were already losing me on the wrestler that yelled everything and the skeleton clown. Now I know youre just making crap up.
Honest to god, he said there was a turnip knight named Steve. Apparently they killed it with fire straight away after the adventure was over, but it did briefly exist.
Thats the stupidest band of adventurers Ive ever heard of...
*shrug* Just repeating what I heard
So... How much longer is this gonna take?
*shakes head* Its no use... Its not enough... My energy alone isnt enough...
Do I still have to pretend to be asleep? Its felt like Ive been here for hours...
How pathetic... If only... if only I had my true power...
Your true power...?
I really wish theyd give the clearly important to the chapter at hand minor characters like these kids, or the soldiers back with Freyja, proper names. Its pretty dumb theyre just Red-Cheeked & Snotty-Nosed Little Boy along with Merry Little Girl.
The other two kids run up to Kir...
*shakes head* No, no, no! NO WAY! You guys are only little! Youd get all tired out!
WE DONT CARE!
No! And that means no!
*turns away* La la la... Cant hear you!
*turns away* La la la... Cant hear you!
Wa wa wa... Cant heawoo!
The trio run over to Setsuna and start making magic casting motions...
Just dont blame me when you get in trouble!
WE DONT CARE!
*sweats and returns to casting the vague incantation he totally knows*
The rest of the party huddles up to discuss the situation...
Not work!? Ymean Setsuna will...
*shakes head* No, I mean they wont have enough magical energy.
Its real cute the local kindergarten class is pitching in but ehh...
Yeah, Im with her. Im not feeling the kinderguardians here...
Cant you help them, Aeterna!?
*shakes head* Im afraid not. I dont really understand this villages magic very well myself...
Or lack thereof... Kir is trying really hard over there but if hes spent a single MP the entire time, Id be surprised.
What should we do...?
Ask someone knowledgeable.
Jak might know something.
Which I suppose means the village chief, Hydor.
...Yeah, I said Jak.
His name isnt Jak, Endir.
Hes just trying to keep a low profile after past adventures. I know the feeling.
All right! We need to strike while the irons hot! Lets go see him immediately! Cmon, cmon!
Whats up with you? You never usually get this frantic... You look like youre ready to sprint over to Hydors place as fast as you can...
How would you know? Youve known me for less than a week.
Shes real judgmental of character like that.
No Im not! And Ive known you for all of a couple weeks, ass. How would you know that?
See what I mean?
Can we go?!
Alright, lets head over to Hydors hut. Im glad most village chiefs and township lords keep their dwellings to the north of town. Makes for easy navigation when we inevitably need to barge in to ask them a favor.
Has Kir still not given up?
Nope, Setsuna just died. Thanks a lot, Jak!
Nows not the time for jokes. Has Kir given up?
Nope. Even those lil kids are helpin now...
Please explain the situation to us.
Why are you being so stingy with your magic, Jak?
Why does he keep calling me Jak?
*shrugs and shakes head*
Very well. Perhaps then you shall understand.
It is said that our blood is closer to that of monsters than of humans... As a result, we possess magical energy far greater than regular humans.
Also long ears... And a prehensile tail...
We are also a short-lived people... Our lives end in their third decade. For many moons, our ancestors were feared, hated, and snatched away from their families.
They were falsely proclaimed to be gremlins by their ignorant superstitions. Absurd bigotry...
*sweats* Some people...
They lived harsh lives, dreaming all the while of extending their life spans... They hid, biding their time and focusing on protecting themselves.
So thats why youre livin hidden away in the middle of nowhere like this...
Years passed, and our ancestors research into extending their life spans continued... Eventually, they discovered a faint light of hope, and following it, arrived at a conclusion... They discovered that it was in fact their surging magical energy that was affecting their life spans.
Pretty ironic... Your magical energy is so strong that your life force becomes weaker...
Yes, in retrospect it seems... rather obvious...
Our ancestors chose to extend their lives... Even at the expense of the very thing that made them unique as a people. They developed a method of purging their bodies of magical energy. Immediately after birth, a special spritnite stone is used to extract the vast majority of this energy. This tradition has now continued for many, many years... With the burden of our magical energy gone, we are healthier, and our life spans are close to doubled.
So Kirs magical energy is only low because it was sealed away...
*nods* However, there are those among us who are still not satisfied... Many have left the village in search of a better solution... but none have ever returned.
Well... not counting Kir. But he just left a week ago, so my statement stands.
Kirs elder brother, Tor, is among them. To this day, he has yet to return.
We are still rare-bloods... that much is unchanged. We are still hunted for our lives... By monsters, and by humans. How could one possibly expect to leave here and remain unscathed?
Its a relief Kir managed to return without encountering any dangers.
Yeah... no. We found him being attacked by monsters.
...And then he got kidnapped by the lord of a nearby town the same day.
*deep sigh* See what I mean?
Or even if you dont leave... right? That must be why there are so many monsters around here... The monsters can sniff out people with high magical energy...
*nods* Indeed... The situation grows only worse.
So thats whats goin on...
Now do you understand? That last, scarce magical energy that remains inside our bodies... Now do you understand just how precious it is to us?
So Kir plans on usin the last of his magical energy to save Setsuna... And that could end up costin him his life? Is that what youre sayin?
What are we gonna do, Endir?
I might be a killer for hire, but Im not going to let a bunch of kids die doing a useless magic trick.
Well, our top priority is the life of the sacrifice... of course... But that doesnt mean were gonna stand by and watch while children die, does it?
Literally what I just said, but yeah.
Youre right. And you never know, there might be another way... Right now its probably best if we stop Kir... Lets go back to where the spritnite vein was. Come on, we need to stop Kir...
Alright, back we go to stop Kir and his... siblings? Theyre not actually clear if those are actually his blood related family or if hes just the oldest kid in town... Regardless, we wanna keep them from keeling over dead from expending all their MP or something. This game doesnt actually have that as a mechanic but still...
Music: The Enchanted Sanctuary
We know everything.
Jak filled us in on you guys. Sorry I said you were a gremlin... But you could see how I could get confused.
Not really! Besides...
Cmon, stop. Youve done enough, kid.
The sacrifices give their lives in order to protect everyone, right? I think Setsunas amazing. I mean... Endir and all of you protecting her are amazing, too, of course...
But shes trying to protect us all... Shes trying to protect the future... If she dies now, I dont think Ill ever be able to forgive myself.
I know what youre sayin, kid, but...
Dont be stubborn.
Good intentions. But if you throw your life away then its just... well... dumb.
Setsuna risked her life to protect me... Now its my turn to put my life on the line!
*stands up and turns to kids* Get out of here, all of you!
The snotty-nosed kid fuckin bolts, but the other two no-sell Kirs yell to piss off.
Hydor approaches the group...
If you do not, you really shall be risking your life!
Do not worry... With rest, he shall soon recover.
Why are you...
*shakes head* It is not that I do not envy Kir... It is not that I do not envy the choices he has made in life...
Music: Deadly Gamble
Hold that listless philosophical pondering, chief. I think your town might be getting raided by monsters again.
It cannot be... This is the third time today! What cruel whim of the gods is this!?
Whoa whoa whoa... hold up, chief. Did I just hear that right? This is the third time *TODAY* that monsters have attacked your village?
Indeed. Wednesdays are usually especially bad.
Very well, I shall take the young lady to safety... Come, all of you! Hide inside the houses! Once we are hidden inside, they shall pass by us. They are not intelligent creatures!
What? Cant we just fight em?
No, you most certainly cannot! If you were to let even one escape, the repercussions would be dire!
*shakes head* Looks like weve got no choice... We cant fight if its going to have repercussions for the village.
*turns to kids* Come on, you get inside too!
*shakes head* Hes not here.
Whats wrong? Who aint here?
! You dont mean that kid... The littlest one?
*looks around* Argh! Where is he?!
Lets fight the monsters.
Thats one way to make sure everyone is safe.
Endir, wait... Werent you listenin to what they just said?
...Ehh. I tuned in and out.
*shakes head* If its going to have repercussions for the village, we mustnt fight. We cant get involved if we cant bear the consequences later.
*grabs sword hilt* I was tuned in for that part. He said if any monsters *escape* itd be bad. Well... Well just have make sure its a total slaughter. No prob...
Lets avoid fighting, and just try and find that little boy.
Tch... Fine. Buzzkill.
New objective: Finding that idiot child that ran off. Why parents are letting their children run around when theres multiple monster raids at the drop of a hat is anyones guess.
Despite the really wearing out its welcome danger music and implied monster peril there... aren't actually any monsters around town we need to fight or evade. Nor is there any time limit before the invasion begins. We can search for the boy at our leisure. On the other hand... theres literally nothing were allowed to do OTHER than find the child over in the southeastern corner of town. So...
*bends down* Here, come with me...
So you can be nice... Im a little surprised, actually.
Take my hand, were gonna go hide. Dont be scared of that ladys mean face. Shes actually nice. Shes not a monster, she just looks like that.
*glares* And that's more like what I'd expect.
All right! Cmon! Lets hide inside the nearest house!
Music: Feeling of Unease
I still say we shoulda fought em...
Not twenty seconds after the monster raid concludes, the other two children already pop in to find their brother... or friend... unclear youngster villager they hang out with...? Whatever! They're here and stoked he didn't get stomped on or devoured.
They give us a nod of thanks before running off to throw rocks at penguins, set fires, and enjoy other youthful wildly unsafe behavior.
And well call it a day there. Hopefully no monsters stepped on the chiefs house or devoured Kir after we left him eating dirt unconscious back there. Kind of a dick move, really...