Part 49: Episode XLIX: Jack the DoctorEpisode XLIX: Jack the Doctor
You know, I'm fairly certain that Carl guy said Cardinal Simon's mansion was across the Thames. Though he also said something about it being to the north too, so who knows? Anyway, let's stay on this side of the river and to the west to find that orphanage.
Music: Someone's Table
Whats wrong with you?
<stomps foot> This is it! This is where all the kidnapped orphans end up!
<examines address marker> What do you mean? It certainly seems that this is the mansion of Cardinal Simon.
So you mean Cardinal Simons mansion has become an orphanage? Hmm
Hey, at any point did we ever look into the possibility this card guy might be, I dunno, evil too?
No. The thought hadn't crossed my mind.
Well, too late to do any research now.
So lets just ask the people who live there directly.
<shakes head> I dont want them to find me. Ill wait here.
Halley runs and hides behind the nearby van... which would offer him zero concealments from anyone inside the orphanage. Yuri goes and knocks on the front door.
Hello, I need to ask you something.
Look, we just wanna ask some questioh, they just opened the door? Huh...
The party enters the mansion.
I was told this is the mansion of Cardinal Simon. Is that true?
A man named Albert Simon. I believe he moved here from Italy
<nods> Oh, yeah, I believe that was the name of the previous owner. I bought this mansion to start an orphanage, but I dont know anything about the previous owner.
...The address sign out front still has Albert Simon's name on it.
I have not gotten around to getting it changed. London bureaucracy. You know how it can be.
<concerned grunt> That checks out...
<nods> Is that right?
Margarete steps forward.
Excuse me, but may I have your name?
My name is Jack, but
Well, Jack, this is an orphanage, isnt it? Where are the children?
<paces> Theyre asleep in their rooms. It is awfully late, you know.
It's 6:30 PM.
<narrows eye> Growing boys and girls need a full night's sleep.
But I really would like to gather some data, so perhaps we could just talk with them a little.
<shrugs and shakes head> That wont do. I told you theyre asleep!
What if I came back in the morning for a brief interview?
I'm afraid it's a holiday weekend.
What does that have to do with the children's availability?
They'll be getting... bonus holiday sleep. As a reward for good behavior.
...That's not a thing.
This conversation will wake the children.
I dont like people from the papers anyhow. Now run along!
Jack motions to the door. The party leaves the mansion.
Yes, it appears to be But the guy were after disappeared two years ago.
Yuri, where did you pull that "disappeared two years ago" from?
From out of your butt? The guy said he knew nothing about the previous owner. That's literally it. Not a thing about him disappearing.
<rubs neck> Well... It's usually something like that in these kinds of situations, ya know?
Don't MAKE UP STUFF to fill in the blank, sonny boy!
So... is this Albert Simon's mansion or not?
It's an orphanage now, like you said, run by a man named Jack. Even though there's no orphanage listing outside and Cardinal Simon's name is still on the building.
<shakes head and shrugs> That seems kind of suspicious
<nods> I think theyre hiding something
The man is wearing an eye patch and dressed like a cheap gangster.
Yeeeeeeah. Nothing about that guy's vibe was on the level...
Well, for the time being, lets go back to the inn
If we try to return to the mansion, this is the ominous message we receive. Boy... we're sure gonna run into a bunch of dead orphans, huh? Geez, you title one LP "In Which a 12 Year Old Takes a Sledgehammer to the Face" and suddenly there's a bunch of dead kids in everything you touch that point forward. That seems entirely unfair.
In any event, there's nothing more to be done at the orphanage mansion. We're not even going to bother looking at that kidnapper van either.
The party leaves the area. Jack opens the door and glares them before stepping back inside.
<nods> Weve got some pests here. Theyre the ones who kept me from grabbing that kid before.
...That was me they kept from grabbing the kid before, sir.
A minor detail.
You stay on their trail. And dont let them spot you.
The Man in Black exits the mansion.
Jack is evil? Whaaaaa? Next, you're going to tell me we're going to tell me this sprawling Resident Evil mansion with a save point right next to the front door is going to be the next dungeon.
Later that day, back at the Old Castle Street Hotel...
Music: Vitamin Metropolis
Cant help wondering what happened to the Cardinal, but its disturbing about the missing children, too.
Speaking of which... who is this boy following you?
I was wondering that myself. Also, where is my money!?
That's Halley and here's your cash. You all hold onto your own money from now on. I don't want to hear it if you get robbed again!
Did HE steal our money!?
No, it was one of his friends. Look, I got it back... mostly. Just drop it.
I'm not gonna drop the fact you wandered back with an ORPHAN after you were all fire and brimstone saying you were going to double tap the lot of them in the head?
...You were gonna do WHAT now?!
Ancient history! Don't worry about it, kiddo! We should get back on track...
Lets take a look around. We still dont understand the connection between Cardinal Simon and this Jack.
<nods> Thats true but from what Ive seen so far, theres something funny about that orphanage. Theres no sign of children anywhere and the whole place seems so gloomy.
And its operator who looked shadier than Wugui of Kowloon.
How is that even possible?
He had an eye patch, a slicked back blonde mullet and a white suit.
Yeah, OK. That sounds like it would do it.
<nods> All right, lets ask the townspeople about that orphanage.
We're back in control. While it was suggested we should ask around town to learn more about the world's least legit orphanage and
What kinda chemicals we talking about here?
Heavy stench of embalming fluid.
...I have no idea what that is or does.
Now it's Jack from the orphanage? Hmm... I may remember something about him...
Oh yeah? Whatcha got?
Umm... He had a low-voice? I think?
Yeah... Yeah, he does. Anything else?
No. That's it.
...That's very helpful.
The drunken Lottery Member just wants to play more Lotto. Maybe the bar owner and patrons have some juicy gossip.
Well, not a whole lot, but I think I heard he was a doctor before he started up that orphanage.
Like a respectable doctor or...?
The man's wearing an eye patch. You figure it out, chap.
Guess he started that orphanage, but there's no way I'd put Joshua or Sharon in a place that guy ran.
<rubs neck> Really hope this ain't leading to a buncha orphans with their organs harvested or something. That'd be real dark...
That's all I know.
Why do I even bother?
That's it for the bar. But there are still the Reformed and Diehard Smokers over by the canal.
Yah, I think that's the usual function of orphanages.
Why would any of them want to come back to this place after being adopted by good families.
Geez, just throwing shade at your crap hole neighborhood, huh?
We Londoners know the score.
Or leaving the orphanage period. I'm pretty sure that place doesn't even have a yard...
Nobody thought that was suspicious?
Ehh... they're orphans. It comes with the territory.
Uh-huh. Well, good luck with that lung cancer, chief.
OK. That's enough diddling around. Let's get back to the hideout. Which, in retrospect, we probably should have covered up the secret entrance to after we left, huh?
Music: Babysitter is Old Nurse
Hmm? Where are the other kids?
Nobody hid the bloody entrance when we left...
Yeah, seems like a mistake. So the kids are...?
They were taken away!
Taken away What do you mean?!
They found this hideout?!
How do you know for certain? They could just be, I don't know, out pickpocketing tourists... Again.
We left the bloody door wide open!
Halley runs to the stairs.
Im going to rescue them!
No! If you go there all alone, youll get yourself killed!
What do you expect me to do, then?!
Let the adults handle it. Yuri and Alice are stronger than they look. And me? I have a GUN! We'll ha
Halley shakes with anger and does an anime power-up.
This power ?!
Halley's power aura fades and he collapses to his knees.
Its why my mom abandoned me
That sounds like a tragic backstory brewin' we're gonna have to skip for now...
The party walks up to Halley.
At least the ones that are your friends. Not having a real hot feelin' about any of 'em that disappeared earlier...
<stands up and nods>
<looks to the girls> One of you, go tell the old man whats happened.
We now have to form a new party with Yuri and Halley being mandatory members. Sorry, Margarete. You're joining the bench with the other old timers. Nobody over the age of 25 allowed in this group.
Music: Much Hatred Still Rankles
Just gonna storm an orphanage with a magical boy and beat up a Cyclops mobster. That's like an average Thursday evening for us.
Sorry I'll miss it.
Margarete runs off.
Halley Brankett has now formally joined the party as our sixth and final member of the squad and is tagging in as our Wind representative. Also, his surname is totally misspelled in this status screen. Or the promotional stuff has it wrong. I mean they're both wrong -- it's Plunkett. Whatever! Nobody ever mentions it in-game anyway. Halley is a pretty decent all-around character. He's pretty skilled with magical attacks but also isn't complete garbage with physical strikes like Zhuzhen and Alice. We'll get into the details of his abilities later on. He might be a mandatory member of the party for a pretty long stretch of the game coming up.
Being a plucky orphan rascal, Halley's weapon of choice is the slingshot. His default one is immediately outclassed by the Oak Slingshot we stole from an alley next to the London Rats hideout long before we even heard of Halley.
It's only +4 Physical Attack but it can randomly inflict poison. So that's neat. Rare are the weapons in Shadow Hearts that inflict status effects.
We don't HAVE to take Alice or Margarete for this next chapter. It's possible to return to the inn if we'd want to grab Keith or Zhuzhen too. But... we don't. Alice is fine and I'd take Margarete over either of those. Zhuzhen, I like your character a lot but we're NEVER using you again in the active party for any main plot segments.
And so all that's left to do is head back to Jack's Orphanage. But leaving Old Castle Street concludes this chapter of Shadow Hearts. Tune in next time for Chapter 17: Orphanage Secret! Will the secret be a bunch of dead orphans? Almost certainly!
I do believe that is the only chapter in the game that has zero combat encounters. Even the opening of the Europe section in Prague with that Terry dude getting immediately ganked had a single fight with some jobbers. But even with the lack of fighting, we did get a few new entries in the old Library codex.
Kiddo, I'm sorry to break it to you but you'll NEVER become a PC. You're lucky if you survive the next chapter of the game.
Someday Halley-senpai will notice her. She's gotta unique character model and everything! Not many NPC girls can claim that in this game.
Does getting mixed into the same vat of orphan slurry count as marriage? Just asking... Dr. Jack actually got an entry here as well. But his just completely spoils his whole upcoming deal. So we'll refrain from looking at one for the moment.
Halley Plunkett Profile Art - Kid, what are you doing stuffing a bunch of Materia into your pocket? That doesn't even exist in this universe!