Part 26: Chapter XXV: To Suffer In Darkness
Well, duty calls, as it tends to. There's about four battles between the center area of Gai Desert, where we fought the Garvel back in Generation 1, and where we need to go. Our destination is right in front of the fortress, as apparently demons have moved in and they're not paying rent or utilities. I'd advise you clear out the desert up to the final battle point, where the boss is, before heading back to town. Or, you could let me tell you that you need to kill 2 Magic Warriors and 10 Flame Knights for Commission 206, as well as Over Killing 3 King Werewolves.
Fun fact: the description for that commission, and I'm not making this up, is "While we're not in London, we do have some king werewolves that need to die. Overkill them or they'll come back...". Bet you thought this game wouldn't make a reference to An American Werewolf in London, didn't you? Other than that, there's two money commissions that add up to 400k Gold total (I'm swinging around 2,000,000+ at the moment), and 2 Dragon Knights, 12 Killer Bats, and 10 Rakshasas. All three of those guys can be found in the new Nenan's Flurry, but I got the Bats' name wrong last time. But, that is what they are. Anyway, a short bonus video. The Ignis Item Shop scene is from before doing the above commissions, and the Priscilla scenes are from after, but all three take place before the upcoming boss fight.
For the boss, we're going with Team Girl Power. Well, there is a team in this game that the game itself refers to as Team Girl Power, but never mind the details. We're rolling with an all-female party for the first time, and I expect great things out of these lovely ladies. A debt repaid
Interestingly, it's not the Talon that should be your biggest worry. It is a more physical-oriented foe, but the weird thing is that it's not excessively so. There's no like, attacks that do 5000 damage or something. Even squishy Eva held out for a while against him, when they KO'd her, but to be fair, she does have 22,000 HP from using that Big Black's convert item, Max HP Change+, linked with like 4 other blue nodes.
No, your biggest worry is the Dryad. It has a lot of magical attack power, and it also seems to be a bit faster than the Talon. Unlike the Fiaat fight, we can't just kill the big guy and hope that Diabolos won't join in. Believe me, I tried. You'll end up fighting him regardless of who goes down first.
With that in mind, I'd advise going for the overgrown weed first. Hiding behind that magical attack and defense is a pretty easy to kill enemy. Very annoying but easy to kill sums up the Dryad perfectly.
Even though the Diabolos nailed three of my ladies with a single Original Skill, it goes down like a putz right after, thanks to Critical Break and Genius from Sofia. Damn those skills work so well together. Also, even though the Diabolos is weak to Light, I wouldn't go in with much Light magic, since Talon is strong against Light. The mutt is much weaker than Talon, and the Talon is weak to Darkness, which is also why Eva's level one Original Skill is currently Avilight Scythe.
The girls utterly crush the enemy with Shaldie's Gift. I have long held it as a truism that more women around makes pretty much anything better, and here's the result. Keep in mind at no point in that fight did I rely on Unleash Magic / All, or Rile, and I still ended that fight in two turns. And that's not even the greatest battle I have this update.
I don't see any demons in the area. It should be safe for the time being. I don't know how long it'll last, though.
The situation is far more serious than we were told.
It'd be some incredibly hard times for people if the rest of the continent was like this.
But it is starting to look increasingly worse for everyone. Looking at what we've encountered in the last few years, it's easy to imagine being overrun by demons.
I can only pray that never happens.
So you've actually come here yourself.
Considering your age, hopefully it won't come back to bite you in the behind.
I only hope that those words won't in the end apply to you. So you are Grey? I can feel vestiges of both Weiss and Schwarz within you. After seeing your fighting prowess, I cannot help but admire your skills. You may surpass even those two.
Enough with the diplomacy. We have finished what we were asked to do. I will leave the rest to you.
You also appear to be far more impatient than those two, as well. Normally, we should be able to defeat a demon like that one, but the situation stopped us from doing so. I feel ashamed that we have had to rely on your family's strength ever since Weiss was with us... According to the scouts I have posted in various locations, I believe that we can handle things from here, although I cannot predict what kind of success we will have. And of course, if one of the demons you seek appears in the area, I will inform you immediately.
Thank you. Please let me know if another demon shows up in the area.
Understood. And be careful when you leave here.
Don't strain yourself too much, okay? You're not exactly young anymore.
I can say the same for you.
I pray that there will be light waiting for you, wherever you may eventually find yourself...
Are you all right? You do not look well... Are you ill, or perhaps injured?
No... I am not ill.
It is hard to believe that you are well considering-
I am telling you that I am fine!
Yikes. Eva's always been cool and collected, but now she's genuinely getting angry. This could be serious...
What's wrong? It isn't like you to raise your voice like that.
It is nothing. Let us hurry onward.
No. We'll be heading back to Frensberge now.
Because in your current condition, you are little more than a burden.
I will not allow those words to stand. When have I ever been a burden to...
Are you all right?
What a terrible fever!
Don't push yourself. There is no need to fight over which one of us gets to die first.
While his joke was in seriously bad taste, Grey is right.
Instead of constantly giving -advice-, why not try out what it's like to be advised for a while?
Get better before you start pissing and moaning, okay?
Let's go, Eva.
All right. Let us return.
What's up, Faz? It's not like you to show so much emotion on your face. Are you really that worried about Eva?
I have been worried that she seemed to be in poor health lately...
I see... Well, she is just a woman, after all. I'm surprised that she hasn't broken down before now.
Yes, I do hope that whatever is ailing her doesn't become serious...
So Eva definitely can't hide it anymore, and it's only going to get worse the more we fight demons. She's starting to get genuinely angry, and she's just not the Eva we know. Eva has to be the straight man and keep everyone else in line, but whatever's going on with her is only making her suffer more and more...
But now comes the 11th and penultimate demon hunt of the game, at Enhambre's Holm Rico Archipelago. To prepare for this fight, unequip all Water skills, and equip a lot of Lightning and Fire abilities. This is a pretty tough fight, but I have confidence Girl Squad can pull it off again. Oh, and have someone equip a Byakko's Bracelet, since we will be facing a lot of Water attacks. Versus Kraken
No relaxing trip to the beach this is. The two Ice Knights are powerful enough, but the Kraken is really going to complicate things, as well as that Dryad in reserve. Some shock therapy would do a world of good for this guy. The Ice Knights are, as you might expect, weak against Fire, but absorb Water. Mervina and Liel are both good choices for this fight, since their current Original Skills, Giselle Eclair and Photon Raid, respectively, are both Lightning-based.
Well, if it wasn't for Mervina getting Sleep put on her and fouling me up for a bit, I probably would have cut a whole turn out of this battle. Very frustrating. But, the Kraken's allies are not as tough as he is, and they all go down and leave him alone. Thanks to my planning ahead, Eva gets to take care of this problem.
Had I used Shaldie's Gift, I probably would have Over Killed him. But, I did Over Kill him last I played this game, and I can tell you for sure he just drops some crappy stat increasing item. I forget what it is exactly, but it's not exactly worth it. Believe it or not, this fight was my first try at this boss on this playthrough, and I just dominated him. It's too bad, since the Kraken's second Original Skill, Tidal Wave or something, does look pretty nice. Shame he didn't get to shoot it off.
But the Girl Squad has proved themselves yet again. The men in the party really need to step it up. Back in town, a quick couple scenes before the big one, at the Inn. Georg of all people has something to talk about this time. This video also has a few bonus scenes on the end of it, including one in the Great Iliya Forest, where we're headed next. To fight the strong
I think she will be fine now.
I believe that she is just suffering from severe fatigue. She should be better after resting for a while.
Sometimes there's no avoiding the bullet when it comes...
Granted, there is much about her that transcends most mortals, however.
She may be an Agent of the God, but she can still be wounded and can obviously suffer from from exhaustion.
I guess Grey wasn't the only one pushing himself too hard...
Oh, you're back. How did it go?
You could say it was a bountiful harvest.
There is no mistaking that this demon is one of the big ones, even if it isn't the demon we're searching for.
This one is my prey.
I don't really think demons are for anyone in particular.
I take it this particular one is your one true nemesis?
What does she mean?
Nemesis... If that is how you wish to view things, I do not care enough to bother correcting you. I will face it again, and this time I will defeat it. I have deliberately lived in disgrace for this chance.
So you have chosen as you have because to you; to fail is to die?
Nay, failure itself is death.
If it is not to satisfy a personal grudge, then why do you continue to fight as you do?
To wield one's sword for revenge is pathetic. Why risk your life to avenge one who is already dead?
You must lead an incredibly lonely life, thinking like that.
I live for the sake of growing stronger. I will not deny that it is something that I do for myself.
Fair enough. To be honest, I couldn't give a damn about what happens to you.
Me, too. I couldn't care less if that demon kills you, but could you not drag us into it? It'd just make things more complicated for us all.
If you want to fight that demon, then I have no objections. But you should give more thought to what will happen should you fall.
Of course I would not think of forbidding you to join me. Do what you will should I be defeated. After all, I would no longer be able to offer suggestions on which path to follow from there.
Do you plan on leaving right now? Eva's condition seems to have stabilized, but...
I am completely fine.
Eva?! You should still be in bed.
The Great Iliya Forest... It is there.
Then let us head for the Great Iliya Forest. Why are you all just standing around? We do not have time to waste.
Jeez, she'll never change, will she? Well, judging by her behavior, there's nothing to worry about.
We'd better get moving, too.
One of the new recipes I got recently for was for what the game calls an upgraded Quickrain, the Hidden Stalk. That is a sweet as hell gun (made even sweeter when Vanessa is packing it, of course).
This place again, huh? Aside from grinding I didn't show you, I haven't been here since the first generation. The event on the right side of the screen is for a Fiona CG event. It's actually not horrible, just kind of dumb. Basically, Fiona hears a rumor about a light from fireflies that bestows happiness, and she stumbles upon them by a lake. She decides to undress and frolic in the lake while wishing for the happiness of her friends as the fireflies surround her.
Granted, a high bar was set by generation one's horrible CG scenes, but it's actually not that bad. I mean, as long as there is nothing on screen that's supposed to stand in for human bodily fluids, I'm liable to call that a wash. Otherwise, the battle point with a red diamond hanging over it is where you want to start fighting.
Here, at the top left of the screen, is Georg's demon. The upcoming enemy is weak to Wind, which Georg's Rebellious Blade is. Besides, feels right to bring him in. Glory in battle
The magic I feel emanating from it is far more powerful than anything I've experienced before.
It's so overwhelming that even I can feel it.
Father, this demon... It's so strong!
I haven't felt this level of power since we fought against my father...against Danaos.
This feeling of impending death that pierces my skin. I have not felt this way for many moons... And the last time I did, I was the only one to survive. To still be alive now means that I was not defeated back then. This time, I will settle things once and for all. To determine which of our lives is to be extinguished, let us hew at each other until we bleed our last!
While I wouldn't go so far as to say this guy is very hard, he is very annoying. Mainly because he has super high defense, making punching through him quite the problem unless you have a desperation skill on. His physical attack power is pretty low, and it's not like his magic is exceptionally strong, either.
I'm beginning to think it was one of the Rune Masters using Preservation that caused Ormos to have such high defense. Unfortunately, it's going to making things very difficult on our end. At least his second Original Skill, Wicked Eye, is pretty sweet to look at it. It naturally follows he should be using a giant laser beam eye. Oh, and thanks to No Fear, Grey has survived both of Ormos' Original Skills. Guy is a tank.
Oof. My last attack, Georg was in Over Wait, and it was Jainus' turn. I had thought that Sofia was still in Grey's formation, but apparently she wasn't... Weird. Anyway, I just narrowly kicked the crap out of him that last turn. Gotta hand it to the goofy ol' well-meaning pervert. He can come through in a scrap, just like he said at the start of the game.
Kind of a schlep, but I'll take it. Certainly wasn't in the mood to fight him again, especially when nothing too horrible or embarrassing happened. I really will have to look into getting people outfitted with status resistance stuff. This is getting silly.
Put your sword down, it's over.
Goddamn! Eva is in horrible shape.
Eva? What's wrong?! Eva?!
There's something wrong with Eva!
No matter what she says, there's no way she can shrug this off. This is getting to be too much...
Let's get her back to Frensberge. Jude, give me a hand.
She's in much better condition now, so she should be fine.
That's good to hear... But lately, there's been something wrong with her, right?
Really? I haven't noticed anything different about her.
Remember that something like this happened that one time. We should let her rest for a while.
Yes, she hasn't been looking too well recently...
Let's make sure that she isn't put under any unnecessary strain.
Leave Eva's care to me and Fiona.
Yes. And everyone, be sure that you get some rest as well.
I believe I have already mentioned this before: I do not wield my sword for revenge. Everything I do is for the purpose of gaining strength. I was victorious this time. However, there is no guarantee that I will survive the next encounter. It will end for me only when I die. There is a great deal of worth in risking my life to fight. Of course, that is not to say that there is any meaning to be found in battle. At least, this is how I think and it may or may not apply to others.
As a matter of fact, a person's reasons for fighting should be of no concern to others. Even if you had chosen to fight that demon for revenge, it isn't something open to criticism. However, it would be a much different matter if you had destroyed another person's life for that reason. However, it would be a much different matter if you had destroyed another person's life for that reason. Even more so if your intentions were corrupt to begin with.
To think that a monstrous brute like myself could ever lead a normal life was a mistake. If you walk a path that only serves yourself, there will only be destruction waiting at the end. All that I have endured must be punishment for looking away from the truth and trying to be human.
I see, and you have paid the price for your transgression with your family and your body.
I have not only taken the lives of demons. I can no longer remember how many lives I have ended... I would seek out those who were said to be strong and challenge them with no thought given to them. And for those who cried for mercy, I callously ignored their pleas. Because of my behavior, when karma caught up to me it cost me the lives of my wife and child.
So you were originally beaten and wounded by that demon while protecting your family. It seems that karma did indeed have its way with you. It is a shame that you had to initiate it, though.
It seems that there is small sliver of humanity left in you.
But it's not a bad thing to feel all of the emotions that come with being alive, pain included.
You may be right, but who knows...? I doubt that I will understand it, even in death.
Don't worry about it. It's something that you're supposed to just feel, not understand.
Will you still continue on your quest for strength?
Of course. There is nothing else left for me to do.
Sorry, but I don't have the time to be your opponent right now. I have said this to you before, but once all is said and done, and if I manage to survive, then I might grant your wish.
I do not mind. I doubt that I will lack worthy opponents if I stay in your company. It seems that I will be troubling you for a while longer.
Glad to have you still on board.
Seems like Eva's still out of it, but apparently Fiona took over for a bit, because there's a 1-1 with Sofia coming up. A woman's hope
Grey, please wait a moment.
What's the matter?
Nothing, really. It's just that it is almost time to eat, so Fiona asked me to find you and let you know... Are you finished here?
Putting her on the spot gives Sofia a chance to speak with Grey by herself, something she's been wanting to do for a while. The LL guide says that Sofia REALLY likes this choice, increasing her affection more than normal. Jainus' and Mervina's goes up, but Fiona's goes down, presumably because we're keeping her waiting.
Did you come all the way out here just to look for me?
Oh, no. I had an errand to attend to in this area; Fiona just asked me to look out for you.
Have you completed your task yet?
Yes, I did.
Good... I have something I want to ask you.
What is it?
Why have you come after me?
A-After you...? What do you mean exactly...?
You don't have to answer me if you don't want to. If you think you can stop me, by all means, do. And everything you think you know about me is probably true. I do not have much time left. I do not care whether it is you or Eva who sends me to my death. But, please, do not fail should you try. That is all I want to say.
Why do you insist on making it seem as if you are to be a sacrifice?
I take it you are asking me that because I am not a guardian...?
Look at my lineage; I'm descended from a guardian. Besides, I don't see myself as being a sacrifice. I am simply doing what is necessary. And aren't you going through the same thing? Is what you're attempting to do really what you want to do?
You are very kind and gentle, maybe too much so. But I cannot let you leave.
I have been chosen to be a Maiden of the Pillar. It is my duty to fulfill that role. However... To be perfectly honest, it makes me happy that you are such a gentleman, Grey.
Holy cow. She is coming on to Grey like crazy. That said, there are certainly worse choices than Sofia. She has a very regal, noble air about her. She carries herself with dignity all the time, she's definitely one of the better character designs in the game, and has an infectious smile. Very solid waifu credentials all around.
Oh, I am so sorry; I didn't mean to say that out loud... I'm so embarrassed...
After I am sealed, whatever made me an individual will be lost.What you intend will do the same. Either way, it is something that no one will be all that happy about. I suggest that you prepare yourself to respond to whatever outcome occurs.
Whether it's good or bad is irrelevant, just as what will happen to me is.
Won't you at least tell me if there is anything I can do to help you?
There is only one thing I wish for. That I can remain myself. Nothing more. We should get going.
Man alive, you cannot fluster Grey at all. I don't think it's physically possible. Schwarz would be all over that if one of the Pillars told him that she's looking forward to having sex with him, but Grey's all like It's not even , really. He is quite possibly the world's greatest buzz kill.
Well, all that aside, one final scene this update, in the Inn. Another very important Eva scene, and even though it has a CG in it (and I'm sure we all know what to expect from that, but it's handled relatively tastefully. Well, tastefully for this game), I'm going to cover it. She has to be at level 5 or 6 affection for this scene to show up. Dreams in darkness
Ah... No...don't...! *Groan* *Pant* Wh-Why...are you doing this to me...?
*Pant* Why won't you release me...? I am no longer your -doll-... I am now a part of them... *Scream* *Gasp* *Groan*
Eva? Eva?! Can you hear me, Eva?!
Fiona... What was I...?
We were so worried about you! You just collapsed all of a sudden. You were moaning and whimpering as well...
Is that so...? I think I'm fine now.
Don't strain yourself, Eva. We'll all take a short break here.
...Fine. If that is what you think is best, so be it. (Could -that- have been from when...?)
Looks like what Weiss said to her, about her growing feelings protecting her when she's lost everything else, is starting to come true. Something torments Eva, hovering at the very recesses of her mind. She is aware of it, but at the same time, she has no words with which to describe it...