Part 53: Episode XLIX: Puppet ShowEpisode XLIX: Puppet Show
Music: Town of Twilight ~ European Town
Yuri is back in the driver's seat. Our only objective now is to return to Anastasia's room clear on the other side of the palace's second floor. But there's one small thing we can do by heading into the Empress Alexandra's (and I guess Alexei's as well despite the single bed) quarters.
We switch back to Anastasia briefly because she'd PROBABLY be the only one allowed in her mom's room.
Is it OK if my new friends come too and we discuss how to prevent the coup of our country?
As long as you don't sneak out again tonight, young lady.
Good night, Sis. See you tomorrow!
The real reason we came into this room is to pilfer this accessory hidden behind the Empress's bed. The circlet provides +3 Physical and +8 Special Defense and is the best piece of headgear accessory available at the moment. However, like the description implies, it is only wearable by female party members. Anastasia can hold onto this. It DOES sort of belong to her mom and she is the squishiest party member at the moment.
There really is nothing else to do right now. So there's no reason to postpone the party's trip to a little girl they just met's bedroom. There are two guards posted literally outside and I doubt word has been sent out that Anastasia's colorful new acquaintances are cool to do whatever in the palace because Rasputin convinced the Empress by just going "eh, why not?" Hell, the Empress doesn't even know ANY of their names besides Edgar.
Music: ENDS. Generic ball music is heard in the distance.
Isn't it like 4:00 AM? Russians keep strange hours...
Not like we have any room to talk...
Anastasia marches up to the window and slams it shut. Generic ball music is muffled away.
What's the big deal?
I hate that tune...
It's like a ten-second loop going forever just like all these parties. It's the worst.
So the ball has begun?
Those are some late hours to begin anything, now that you mention it.
It's every night. Every night.
Sometimes even afternoons and the occasional morning. We had three balls in one day last month...
There's something wrong with them. This whole country is insane. Maybe it should disappear...
The people's anger is ready to explode and we pretend nothing's going on.
I walk up to random people out on the street and they just blurt out treasonous things with no promptings. It's crazy!
We're like Nero. We keep on fiddling as the world is burning around us.
It's the same problem for all leaders. This country has gotten too big. Yep! <nods>
Hmm. Don't say that. You'll bring us bad luck.
That's right. There are a lot of people that still have dreams.
Yeah dreams... Dreams like killing me and my whole family and overthrowing us. And I'm not just talking about Rasputin. Though he is A Problem...
I worry... Someday I'm afraid the people's anger will explode and they'll burn down my palace.
NEW Music: Sadness Mood (Yeah, kind of a bummer theme.)
He first came to the palace some years ago...
My mother was in anguish over Alexei, born with a rare and painful disease.
One day, a man came from Siberia who was said to have great powers of healing.
That was the monk, Rasputin. Rasputin healed my brother's illness and earned the trust of my mother.
Since then, he has begun to wield greater control over the country
My father himself is a kind man, but he has left too much to his ministers.
Their idea of government is one that simply keeps the people oppressed. And anger towards the emperor who allows it is threatening to boil over.
Even the war could soon be ended if my father would stand up and be strong. But there are some who profit from war and wish for it to go on forever...
If I were a man, I'd be able to help my father! <stomps foot>
In a few years when I'm older and people would take me seriously...
I wish I were in Alexei's place.
...Minus the blood disease and getting magic done by Rasputin. I don't like being around that man. You can probably tell why.
Russia is infected by a disease. We're a statue, too stiff to move. <starts crying>
Yuri walks up to Anastasia and bends down.
I'm half-Russian, you know. My mother was born and bred in Russia.
<stops crying and looks up> Huh? Really?
...My name is frikkin' YURI! Heck, my mom almost named me "Urmanov."
...That's usually a surname, though.
Yeah. Mom was never very good at naming this. Dodged a bullet there. Why would I go by? Ur? <cringes> But hey, I have a bit of stake in this country getting by too... even if I've only been in it for the first time a couple hours ago.
So don't get so depressed, all right? If the princess gives up, everyone else will too.
<stands up straight, starts walking away and stretches his arms> When your father comes back, you should talk to him.
Yuri, did you just give a sweet and good pep talk?
I mean... that doesn't seem you....
Shuddup. What do you know?
Now *that* seems more like you.
Music: ENDS. Ominous humming begins.
Huh... Something... strange is going on...
Am I the only one seeing the umm... pink fog...?
Yep. That's the strange part, kid.
Out in the hallway, random palace dwellers start stumbling about like they're drunk and muttering to themselves.
Empress Alexandra stumbles into the room in a daze.
<reaches out randomly around the room> Alexei?! Alexei?! Where are you?!
Come back to the one bed, sweetie! I know you're near ten now and want your own room too now, but mother knows best, dear!
Anastasia runs up to her mother and holds her back. She takes no notice of her daughter.
Alexei?! Is that you?!
What's wrong with Alexei?! Why are you looking for him?!
And why are your pupils so dilated? And is that... drool?
Empress Alexandra shoves her daughter aside and continues to reach out to nothing while stumbling forward.
Veronica is behind this too! She's cast a sleep spell on the entire palace!
She seems more drunk than asleep, but OK...
How do we remove it?
We either break the field, or defeat Veronica herself!
<cracks knuckles> I'm down putting my fist in that sexed-up bitch's face.
...I'm sorry did she strap you to a torture machine and electrocute and whip you? I'm a LITTLE cross with her, alright?!
So why aren't WE affected by the weird perfume thing this time?
That spell only works once or twice. After that you're immune.
...OK. So why are the old man and the kid fine?
...Don't worry about that!
<breathes heavily> Ugh... Ungh...
Gepetto grabs Anastasia before she can run to her mother's aid. They both stare at her intently as she starts getting some evil ass vibes coming off her.
You never want to see someone slowly turn around with the terrible posture and drooping arms pose. In all of history that has never once been a good sign of things to come.
Hehehehehe... Hehehehe... How do you like my little puppet show? It's much more entertaining than a boring old ball, don't you think?
I was not even going to play this little charade tonight. Who has time on a Sunday? But with the appearance of the Godslayer and his allies... how could I resist? I do enjoy a dedicated audience...
Why did I waste months spying on you if you were just going to go full ham evil in a single night?!
Youth is often wasted on the young.
Anastasia... I have your little brother sleeping on my lap. He's very cute. Perhaps it would be more merciful to just let him slip away in his sleep.
He may rouse from sleep when the dagger pierces his throat. But it won't be long before slumber returns. For good. Hehehe.
<struggles to break free from Gepetto> Don't you dare hurt my brother!!
<steps forward> Listen to me, shithead. I'm coming for you now.
My fist. Your jaw straight through that stupid beard. Mark it tonight on the calendar.
Very well. I'll be waiting for you here, Godslayer.
Please do try not to get too much blood on my future palace on the way here. Again, the cleaning bill is not a troublesome burden I wish to entertain.
Mhm. Smash every lackey I see's head into paste. Got it!
<deep sigh> I'll be going now.
And with that Empress Alexandra drops like a sack of potatoes and The Winter Palace has turned into our next dungeon.
Video: Episode 49 Highlight Reel (You don't want to watch Yuri call Grigori Rasputin a shithead?)
Anastasia Romanov Concept Art - For a child character, Anastasia is alright. She's a good mix of being a pretty good kid and a total little shit. Just ignore the fact she's supposed to be 14 when they clearly wrote and designed her to be 10-12 tops.
Anastasia Romanov Hair Concept Art - Now you too can have a dumb hairstyle assuming you started with two-foot long pigtails.