Part 10: Christophe
Chapter 5: Christophe
Ughh. What a day. I dunno, I thought we were having a pretty good day for a while. You would. Anyway, we left Danette digging for some stupid gem that wasn't there. We kept on down the road to Astec. Some bandits attacked us on the way. They had a nasty habit of hiding their positions, but they weren't terribly strong.
Feinne on Soul Nomad:
I have omitted a map here because there was no story. It introduces the Bandit class, which has the field ability Fade Out, which makes them invisible until they attack or you run into them. You can follow their position by watching the cursor move as they move, though.
Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.
We eventually managed to make it to Astec, but things never seem to go smoothly when Gig's involved in any way. Hey, wait, I'm involved in everything you do now. Exactly.
Why do these people insist on getting in our face?
I've never seen you around here...
You got a referral?
No, I don't.
Sorry, but nobody's getting past me without a referral!
You're gonna hafta scram!
Listen, punk. Just who do you think you're talking to?
Wh-where'd that voice come from?
Oh, that was nothing...
I'm really not in the mood for this. Here, lemme lend you some of my power. Just kill 'em quick, would ya?
Now, now... what seems to be the trouble?
These agitators came around and started giving us lip!
And a voice came out of nowhere and insulted me... it was like a ghost or something!
My dear boy... are you alright?
Y-yes, of course! Anyway, they don't have any sort of referral, and they're trying to just barge in here!
I'm sorry, but we are quite strict here. You must have a referral to enter.
You have no choice but to turn around and head back the way you came.
But we don't have to listen to him, do we, soulmate? We can just break right in.
Isn't there any other way?
I wish I could help, but rules are rules.
I'm sure you came a long way, but we can't simply toss protocol out the window. I'm sure you understand...
Listen here, old man...
I'll tell you what I understand.
I don't give a shit what you say. We're going in, like it or not.
If that's the case, I cannot let you in, and I cannot let you leave!
Guards! Seize them!
You'll regret turning your blades on me once you're dead...
You have no idea what I'm capable of!
While we were traveling towards Astec I decided to spread our forces a bit. I put Danette in charge of a different room so that we could defeat enemies twice as quickly. Oh, like you need anyone but you and me. Do I need them? Maybe not. Do they make things take less time and be less annoying? You're damn right. Fair enough.
Anyway, Danette's not exactly weak on her own.
After we'd been fighting for a while, the old man in charge seemed to have seen enough.
What is it now?
You maggots lost your will to fight?!
Woah! Hey! Hey! You're gonna let 'em get away?!
Dammit, you friggin' coward! It was just getting fun!
What a gyp...
I decided it would be better to parlay with them, what with us still needing information and everything. Blah, blah, lots of words to say you're a chickenshit.
For a while there, I thought you might be a demon or something. But I guess that's not quite right.
That voice and your strange power are connected, aren't they? Where do they come from?
Let me explain...
I gave him a brief overview of the situation.
I must apologize for earlier. We had no intention of standing in your way. Please, lower your sword.
How about this? I'd like you to come to my home with me, this instant.
I am most interested in the power you have displayed, and your... split personality.
And I simply must repay you for the undue hostility we've displayed.
Besides, you have business in my fair city, do you not?
Business can be tough here if people don't know your face. I can help make things a bit more convenient for you.
Once you finish up here, please drop by.
Whatever, I don't even care anymore.
This one's up to you, kid.
And so we puttered around the city of Raide for a while. Gig decided to introduce me to one of his, um, more amusing talents while we were there. I have no idea what you're talking about. Remember all those times when I was talking with someone and you picked a fight with them? Oh, that. Suck it up, baby.
Feinne on Soul Nomad:
So, there are Gig Edicts you can use out of combat in towns. Fight allows you to beat up and rob a townsperson of precious money. Combine allows you to gain extra stats by defeating a townsperson. Once you've defeated a townsperson, you can Dominate them with a Kidnap edict, which is awesome because it lets you get certain classes way earlier than normal. You can steal powerful décor items from townspeople as well, but save beforehand, because if you fail you lose LOTS of money.
And now back to our regularly scheduled programming.
We asked around a bit, but didn't hear much of value. I decided it was time to head to Christophe's place.
Man, this stuff is great! I've never tasted anything like it! Here, here! Try this syrup!
Holy hell, you sure know how to put out a good spread!
You seem to be in a better mood.
What's mood got to do with it?
If something's stupid, I say so. If something's delicious, I say so. It has nothing to do with 'mood'.
So you're enjoying it, then?
It's a special dish from the southwest, made mostly from hotpods.
If you'd like, I can fix you some to take with you, as a gift.
But that raises the question... You're tasting it through that body, yes? Does that mean you share all senses?
Did you have something to tell us?
Oh, I'm sorry. I'm just so interested in you two.
Very well, to the topic at hand...
I manage all the trade throughout this region.
My position entails many problems, of course. Often, simple power of position isn't enough in our desolate world.
I suppose I should just be frank.
I'd like to borrow your power.
That grand, wonderful, mysterious source of influence you have...
True, I am able to field a sizable army.
But some problems can't be solved with brute force. Like you, for example.
Now, I don't care what your own plans are. But I know you'll need money.
And I pay very handsomely for valuable services. So... how about it?
Why not cut out the middleman?
We could just take everything you have by force. You said yourself you can't stop us.
Yes, well... that would pose a problem, wouldn't it?
So, soulmate, whaddya gonna do?
What exactly do you want from us?
Why you gotta be so nice to people?
Hey, this guy's obviously not on the up-and-up.
I don't care either way, but are you really gonna let him treat you like a sucker?
Thank you for your consideration.
Let me explain myself more fully...
There's a dispute taking place outside.
We've come upon a suspicious Sepp girl.
We've taken some minor injuries. She's surprisingly powerful...
Hah. I wonder if it's who I think it is.
Ah, and acquaintance of yours?
Well, let's bring her in and make sure.
Cuthbert, please bring her to us.
And treat her kindly. She may be friends with our honored guests here.
Here she is, Brother.
There wasn't any stinkin' Crimson Tear under that tree!
I dug like a million holes out there!
I hate liars so much!
So you know each other, then?
I won't forgive you for leaving me behind like that!
Hey, you in there! Are you even listening to me?!
My name isn't 'hey you in there'! It's Gig! G-I-G! Gig!
Why can't you get that through your thick bovine skull?
Grr, you're really pissing me off!
I'm gonna rip that smartass mouth right off your face!
Don't you remember who this body actually belongs to?
Ohh, nice comeback!
Hahaha... You people are just too funny! Hahaha!
What the hell is wrong with that guy?
Oh, you'll have to excuse him... He, erm... really loves to laugh.
Miss, you look exhausted. We have some food prepared, if you're hungry.
They say you should never fight on an empty stomach.
In fact, you should all get some rest.
We can talk more about your task tomorrow.
I must excuse myself for now, but please take your time and enjoy the meal.
I decided to wander around the manor for a bit.
Hey, what are you doing wandering around?
I got lost...
Heh. You're a terrible liar.
A more paranoid man might mistake you for a spy. You should be more careful.
What about you? Taking off in the middle of the night?
Talk about suspicious...
It's because you're here.
Anyway, be a good little child and get back to your room, okay?
I'm not sure I like Cuthbert very much, probably for the best that he snuck out. Yeah. Anyway, that's all that happened today, and I think it's time for me to get some sleep.
I had the dream again. I'm not sure if it's Gig or just me, but I seem to be able to remember a lot more this time.
...I don't remember.
Oh well, not like it matters.
You saw my dream, I saw yours. Now we're even.
It seems every new thing just raised more questions. If that was my mother... Who is she? Is she still alive? Why was I left alone? It seems every time I take one step towards discovering who I am, the path grows ten more steps longer. I can't stop, though. I have to know who I am.
Christophe explained to us what he wanted us to do. I'm not excited by this whole affair, but we need his help. I'm excited, we get to genocide the hell out of some fools.
Are you familiar with the Nereids?
I don't think so...
They are a species of all-female creatures. As their name suggests, they live beneath large bodies of water.
Their stronghold lies in the waters to the southeast of Raide.
They're not usually a hostile group. But recently, they've taken to harassing the area around the city.
We're quite troubled by the ruckus these water women have been raising.
As recently as yesterday, a group of knights were attacked behind our own castle walls.
The enemy was quite vicious, I hear.
The Nereids apparently hired them. Their leader was a giant barbarian covered in terrifying tattoos...
Hah! Would you listen to this guy?
Regular soldiers aren't cut out for this. I'd like you to teach these creatures a lesson.
So basically, you want us to genocide them all, down to the last flipper.
Eheh... not quite. I would never suggest such an... unsettling idea.
Hell, I'll be there and back before you can cook up our victory dinner!
You're certainly not lacking in confidence. I look forward to your successful return.
Um... didn't we attack those guys?
Shh! Shut up, kid! If they find out it was us, that's just going to cause more grief!
Hm? Is it possible... that you...?
No, no... that couldn't be!
You don't have any tattoos. And you're certainly not giant! Haha.
Oh, by the way... I'm going to lend you some of my personal security detail.
Feel free to use them however you see fit.
So, how about it?
You trying to mock us or something with your pathetic rabble of worms?
Well, no. Actually, I wanted them to go and watch you in action.
It would be a marvelous learning experience for them.
Glad to hear you didn't underestimate us.
So, who are they? What kind of newbies are you forcing on us?
I should hope you recognize them. Though Cuthbert seems to have slipped away...
Please bring Levin and Vitali to us.
Y-you're that guy from yesterday!
Hey, aren't you that candy-ass guard from before?
Haha, I suppose to you everyone must be a 'candy-ass'.
But he's done pretty well for us so far.
Got that right! Who can compare to my totally indestructible ass?
But fine. We'll take these little children to school.
Go ahead, soulmate. Dominate 'em!
Having complete faith in your full potential, I send you on this mission.
I ask that you go along with them.
Well, th-that's... it's just cuz of the commute... and if my sis- er, my family needs me... if they're sick or something.
Yes, Levin. I understand quite well why you might not want to leave here.
But this is only temporary. And it's for your own good. You can't be a guard your whole life, you know.
*sigh* If you insist, Master Christophe...
Indeed, that went faster than I imagined.
Very well, I shall anticipate the good news of your triumph.
So now we're heading out to fight these Nereids. I just hope that whatever Christophe can offer us is worth having to fight people who've pretty much done nothing to us. Oh, toughen up. I don't worry about crap like that, and you shouldn't either.
If they were ever to turn on us...
I can't trust anyone but you. Do you understand?
I will do as you say.
And another thing...
If you find out anything about those others, please inform me right away.