Part 24: Episode XXIV: No SellEpisode XXIV: No Sell
Now, where were we? Oh right... Zhuzhen was having another really bad day.
Music: Misfortune - Psycho Temple
I-Ill be all right!! Y-you magic-sucking, half-pint, slicked-back bastard
Hey. I know you're upset I sold the bar, but that's mean...
I think the old man is talking to me.
I was talking to him.
Oh... That makes more sense.
Heh. And I was thinking of allowing you a quick death. As usual, you had to go and say too much Ill cut off your limbs and serve them to Dehuai. And that wagging tongue of yours as well!
You're going to cut off my limbs and have me bleed all over your place just because you're getting mad? I see why this bar turned into such a dive.
Oh, it's fine. It's not like it'll be the first time. Right, Zhen?
<frown> I'll have Qiuhua go get the mops...
Ah, there they are!
Yuri and Qiuhua rush onto the scene.
Dont tell me youre half-dead? You hurt? This guy did this to you?
Heh Whats the matter, kid? You sound like youre actually starting to care about me or something.
Yeah, well... Don't let it go to your head.
Some of your friends, Zhuzhen? Poke around in other peoples business and youre bound to get hurt. Ill forgive you this intrusion. Get lost!
Great, another rambling jag-off. That crappy sorcerer sure has a mid-boss type he likes.
Yuri stands up and gets in Wugui's face.
I dont care if you get down on your hands and knees, I wont let you off the hook!
W-who are you?!
<waves a dismissal> Why would I tell you?! It doesnt matter anyway, since youre going to die right here! You really are dumb!
(Why am I getting an awful sense of déjà vu...?)
<nervous laugh> Wh-wh-wh What an amusing joke!! A all right, fool! Well see whos about to die!!
You, dumbass! We've discussed this.
No, I meant that I amwait... I've DONE this before! But where...?
Music: Brain Hopper
Time for Yuri vs. Wugui of Kowloon. Perhaps this will go slightly better than Zhuzhen's attempt.
Wugui doesn't mess about this fight. He immediately goes for the throat and attempts to take out Yuri with his Game of Death.
You just stood there for a minute and then kicked the air... I don't get what you were going for, guy.
I see. You, too, are protected by the darkness!!
Well, I mean that's true of Yuri in his current form. But we can always switch that up. While Yuri is immune to Wugui's one hit KO, there's still nothing we can do about his absorption of magical attacks. So, let's switch over to something that packs a bit more punch, eh?
And then let's buff our punching potential to the maximum. We need to beat 333 HP out of Wugui. Which is the same amount he had when he fought Papa Hyuga fifteen years ago. Yuri still has about 25 Levels to grind if he wants this to be that much of a stomp match. But we'll be fine.
The remainder of this fight just turns into Yuri and Wugui exchanging punch combos to each other's faces. Turns out an eight-foot-tall, burly fire elemental with four arms can outpunch a short guy from Hong Kong that ate some Gum-Gum Fruit. It's got to be really embarrassing every 15 years to have a Hyuga show up on your turf and just completely whip your ass.
He even steals Wugui's wallet while he's at it. The guy shouldn't have been carrying around that much spending money if he didn't want to get mugged.
Also, for defeating Wugui in a fist fight, we get this extremely specific use case item. This sounds like it might be useful in some scenario where, I don't know, Wugui fought an entire party and could use his OHKO on people who were not immune to it. Except that scenario assumes we wouldn't be finding items that straight up defend against instant death by the point that would come up. The game will not be presenting such a scenario...
As soon as the battle ends, Margarete and Alice run onto the scene.
Music: Misfortune - Psycho Temple
F-fusion!! Y-you youre a demon !
Oh no, you're gonna hurt my feelings saying stuff like that while I'm standing over here with a 4-0 record against Dehuai lackeys.
I changed my mind! Im not going to kill you anymore, so you run along to Dehuai Since Im here, he better hide his girlie magazines, cause he could get killed any day now!
Nnngh Thingsll go a bit differently next time, kid!!
Uh-oh. Are you gonna have a second powered-up form? Or maybe throw one of those Yamaraja dudes at me?
...N-no. Forget this!
<weakly stands up> Ugh... Ill be all right Heh heh heh. Not to sound ungrateful for your help, but couldnt you have come just a little sooner ? Hey, I think Im having déjà vu Urgh owww
<approaches Yuri> Arrgg... No Whats happening I cant believe it
Theres no mistaking it His eyes and his mouth Its an absolute likeness!! Like a twin
Psst... Alice? Zhuzhen? Who is this senile old guy...?
Its as if hes alive and grew to be this grand ohh urggh
<turns to Alice> Hey, hes crying! Er What should I do?
<confused shrug> Maybe give him a hug...?
Naw... I don't even know who this guy IS!
Master Zhuzhen, is he ?
Heh heh heh You guess right, Qiuhua, Zhen. Let me introduce you. The kids name is Yuri. Its a memento from Colonel Ben Hyuga!!
Err... Did I miss something sleeping in...?
I told you he didn't hear any of that.
<concerned hum> Yeah...
Sometime later... Back at the party's hotel room.
Ever since then, I accompanied him in his travels. We opened a shop in Shanghai because he said we should make this our base of operations But in fact, he did it out of concern for young Qiuhua.
Am I supposed to know who that is...?
Ah right. You're the one that ran out hollerin' about how the old quack was getting his ass handed to him.
That's not how I said it at all.
I can read between the lines.
Each summer, father left the village for work. Then he returned just before winter began. But there was that one year A cold winter arrived, and snow was falling. But no sign of father And instead, what came to our village was Hmph Forget it
See I can trail off on key backstory too...
I heard that the colonel had a Russian wife. And that they had a young son. But I had no idea that he would be alive
My mother died. Heheh, but just my luck, I had to outlive them.
<steps forward> How can you say that? I havent been this thrilled in my life. And how happy Zhuzhen must be as well!
Oh yeah, gramps... We need some words.
<sigh> Here we go...
But you kept quiet the whole time!! Whether its about my father, or me, or whoever else
Why is everyone so damn secretive!! Why?? Tell me, you stupid old man!!
I was over the old guy who's read ahead in the script routine since we first met. Time to knock it off for real!
<runs up to Yuri> Stop it, Yuri! Zhuzhen was agonizing over it all the time. He didnt know how to tell you. So, please !
Wait, when did he tell you about this crap...?
While you were sleeping.
Didja all sneak off to hear stories about my old man while I was napping?
No. We were standing... actually, literally exactly where we are standing right now. You are... a VERY heavy sleeper, Yuri...
Oh that's rich coming out of you after you fell dead asleep on a park bench for hours.
They don't need to hear about that...
What did you say?! Those could be your last words!
...OK, that part I didn't hear about...
I first met Hyuga fifteen years ago, here in Shanghai.
When he saved you from that Wugui man and gave you a piggyback to safety!
Pfft... Really? Ergh... I mean, keep talkin'!
I didn't feel that was important information here. Let me continue...
Zhuzhen sighs and looks out the window.
We spent much time tracking Dehuai. Finally, we learned what the Demons Gate Invocation was. We hit Dehuais stronghold, the Kuihai Tower, and finally defeated him. It was a fierce battle.
So then, the man you told me about in Dalian was
<turns to Yuri and nods> Thats right. I was talking about your father. Hyuga put his life on the line and stopped the cursed Valorization.
Then my father died, eh
Yuri Please forgive Zhuzhen Zhuzhen didnt want to get involved in the same fight your father got pulled into. I can fully understand Zhuzhens feelings. If I were him, I wouldve done the same thing.
Yuri kicks the wall. Music: ENDS.
Zhuzhen. If Dehuai is trying to repeat the same mistake he attempted fifteen years ago Then the next target is surely Master Xifa!!
Music: Much Hatred Still Rankles
Y-youre right!! How could I have been so dense?!
Dont shout like that all of a sudden! You wanna scare me half to death?!
Gah! When did you get here!?
I've been here the entire time. It's been REALLY awkward, let me tell you!
But that temple is the holiest place in Nine Heavens Taoism. Its protected by Master Xifa himself. Even that miserable fool Dehuai should know better than to mess with that place.
Yeah. He was my teacher... a mangy old goat. Hes the protector of the underground temple at Wuhan.
YOU are calling someone a mangy old goat? What is he? Like a hundred years old?
108 this year, if I remember correctly.
And heres the rub. The White Tiger is ensconced there one of the Gods of the Four Directions.
At first, the White Tiger picture was kept elsewhere, but to keep it from falling in Dehuais hands Colonel Hyuga placed it in the care of Master Xifa.
Which means Dehuais plotted out this scheme far more carefully than before And if thats what hes called in Wugui for, then its all beginning to make sense.
Zhuzhen focuses on Yuri.
How about you, Yuri? Do you have the guts to walk your fathers path?
My My fathers path?
The one I just got tossed on my lap like a minute ago now that we're in the thick of it...? That path...?
<points to Yuri> It will be a difficult and painful road. And when you arrive, you may find nothing but despair and ruin. Are you up to the challenge?! Huh?! What do you say?!
Zhuzhen! H-how can you ask such a thing of him?!
<looks to Qiuhua and slaps the air> Butt out, kid! Weve got absolutely no time to waste!
<looks at Alice> This has been a race against time from the moment those bastards set their sights on Alice!!
Alice said that she could find out why her father died if she fought Dehuai. Right?
That isn't how I would put it, but...
<nods> Yes, thats right.
<turns back to Zhuzhen> Pops, I No matter what the cost, if I have a chance to see what my father saw, I wont have a single regret. If that damn Dehuai really is going to release that Demons Gate Convocation upon us
I don't know what either of those words means! Doesn't matter...
Ill do everything I can to make sure his little convocation is canceled once and for all!
<laughs> Heh heh good for you, kid. And you can count on this broken-down old sage here to guide you through hell if need be.
Yeah, well... get it together. I don't care what my pops did. I ain't giving you any piggyback rides if you get wrecked.
<slowly turns head and glares at Alice>
Margarete, looking for any excuse to get out of this conversation, notices something awry with the hotel room door and opens it.
Fancy meeting you all here again just when it sounds like you could use my services.
<gives a c'mon this fucking lady motion> You!! You were listening in again, werent you?!
No! No, I wasnt! I just happened to overhear.
With your ear up against the door!?
Well, I... err... heard a loud noise. Like something being kicked. I wanted to be sure there wasn't any trouble, you see...
Oh hey, that was me. My bad!
Seems like a reasonable response.
Sorry for the noise!
Are you all for real right now!?
<shrugs and shakes head> How incredibly suspicious you are! Now Im SURE I dont like you.
<shrugs and walks into the room> Now, now. Dont get so angry.
I hear Dehuai has sent his men to Wuhan. And thats not all! The Japanese military troops that were secretly stationed in Shanghai have been secretly sent to Wuhan, too!
Sounds like the beautiful and talented regional Japanese Army leader is onto the plot. You'll have to hurry if you want to get ahead of her movements!
<incredulous gesture> Hey! How is that you know about Dehuai let alone movements of the Japanese Army?!
<turns to Margarete> Hee hee! We in the smuggling business can get our hands on a lot of underground information.
You need to hang onto the secrecy of your contacts if you want to get ahead in this business. You understand, right?
<shrug> Something smells here But if youre trying to help us, I suppose I ought to thank you.
I got my eye on you...
<turns back to the rest of the group> Well, and here I went to all the trouble of gathering information I thought you could use! Yuri, Zhuzhen, what shall we do? There isnt much time left.
I got my hands on a vehicle that'll let you get there ahead of the army. Parked it just up the street. Great, huh?
<suspicion intensifies> Hmm...
Dont you think that even for a great Adept like yourself, hell be an awfully tough opponent?
<nods> Well I suppose youre right
Zhuzhen, well go with you to Wuhan!
No, Zhen. You and Qiuhua stay here and gather as much information as you can. We need this place to be the base of our activities again!
You've got the bar back now that Hyuga's son has beaten Wugui, right?
That... isn't how business ownership works. There's a ton of paperwork filing, and I'd need to get the deed to have it signed over and
Nah. I think I beat that guy's ass hard enough he won't come back. I'm not sure what we're talking about either, so don't quote me on that...
Wait here, and rest assured We wont let them touch the White Tiger!
Yuri Okay, I understand. Qiuhua, lets get back to the shop. Ah yes, before you leave Shanghai, stop by our place.
Be careful, Uncle Zhuzhen! Come back safe!
Boy, will we ever get ready. Tune in next time as the gang does some shopping, gets a few upgrades and Yuri gets involved in an underground pit fighting tournament as Shadow Hearts continues!
Video: Wugui Boss Battle
Li Zhuzhen Portrait It's amazing how he keeps that monocle and hat on straight despite all these ass kickings.