Part 30: Detective Oboro
After all that recruitment last time, we've finally run out of optional things to do. That means it's time to advance the plot until more optional stuff shows up so we can go right back to neglecting our duties.
Detective! Detective Oboro! The Prince is here!
Oboro's ship is parked in Rainwall's harbour, right where we left it, so all we need to do is mosey on down.
???: Okay, okay. I'm coming.
Here's my card.
Wow, this dude doesn't look suspicious at all or anything.
He hands Frey something...
...and then one to Lyon as well.
"Oboro... of the Oboro Detective Agency"...?
Um... What's this piece of paper for?
It's my business card. Haven't you ever seen one before? I invented them, you know. I think they're pretty snazzy, but they're not catching on like I expected.
You'll fit right in. I can just feel it.
Oh, uh, yeah, they're... snazzy, like you say!
Court diplomacy at work. I like Miakis' version better, but what can you do? We kinda need the guy.
Detective! That's enough chit-chat. Time to talk business!
Ah, guess you're right. Let's find out how we can help you guys, then. Right this way, please.
So everyone has a seat.
So you'd like us to investigate what Lord Barows was up to at the time of the Lordlake uprising, eh? That about the size of it?
Yes. Can you do that for us?
Can we ever! We'll have Barows covered in dirt before you know it!
Just like that, Detective? The uprising was two years ago. Do you really think we can do it?
Please. With us involved, two years is like two minutes! Besides, the Prince wants us to solve a mystery. And who doesn't love a good mystery?
Well, I guess you have a point... Oh, all right. Fine.
Oh, and about the fee, Prince... I'll talk it over with your people later!
I have people now? But I guess that means it's not coming out of my hard-earned salt profits, which is all right by me.
Sagiri: I'm awake.
Shigure: Aw, jeez... Whaddaya want now? Man, what a pain in the...
All right, leave the rest to us. When the investigation is complete, I'll come give you a report. We should be done in no time!
Even Frey bows this time! But yea, Oboro is a pretty cool dude, so I understand where they're coming from.
Hmm? Is something wrong, young lady?
Uh... No. Nothing's wrong at all.
Sorry about that, Prince. I don't know what came over me.
If you say so?
Swift investigations! Privacy guaranteed! Nothing but the straight facts! You can count on us!
Oboro with crew is off doing... detective stuff, I guess. We'll just head on back.
After we bother this chick a bit.
And grab a bite to eat.
Oh, a peasant.
*hic* Wha's with yer costume?! Whyyya playin' dress-up as the Prince?! Whatever... Lemme alone, man!
I said, quit buggin' me! Git outta herrrrre! *hic*
Yeah, I seem to have lost my appetite.
You gave us this job, so quit messin' with our work!
What do you mean?
We're investigatin' that drunk!
Well he did have a portrait and all, but... seriously?
Huh...? Why would you need to investigate him?
His name's Norden. He was the vice-captain of the Barows garrison during the Lordlake uprising. He resigned after failing to stop the uprising from passing through Barows territory.
Well, I think I've solved the mystery of why he's drinking in the middle of the day...
I know! I can hardly believe it myself.
He's coming out. Let's hide.
Uh, all right!
I like to imagine them hiding behind a corner with their heads sticking out in a cartoonishly obvious fashion.
[_] Too sloshed to notice
[_] Too sloshed to care
[_] Both of the above.
But he's followed by someone who looks a lot more sober...
That was a lookout man. Ugh... What a pain!
We should follow him.
I was just thinking the same thing.
Guess we gotta.
What? You wanna go?
Hey, I'm a great detective. I managed to figure out who was eating all the cheesecake back at the palace. Well okay I only had one suspect, but I was also twelve at the time. Everyone thought it was very impressive.
We'd better hurry, or we may lose them.
Standin' around's a pain, too. Have it your way.
And so they join the party. Detectives!
We saw the direction he was going off in, and also the state he was in at the time, so finding him shouldn't be too hard.
Wha' the hell ya talkin' 'bout, man?! That was just some stuuuuupid kid in a li'l ol' costume! *hic*
Shady Character: Hmph... You truly are pathetic. I think you know already, but here's a reminder: You'll live longer if you keep your mouth shut.
I fucking love what they did with Norden's dialogue.
Shady Character: You need to cut back. You've been a very loose-lipped drunk lately. Keep it up, and it'll be the end of you.
I said, git outta herrrrre, man! *hic*
Shady Character: I'll be keeping an eye on you. Given your carelessness, I'm sure we'll meet again.
The shady character walks off.
Norden does too, in the opposite direction.
Well, it's kind of like they were hiding behind the corner with their heads sticking out in a cartoonishly obvious fashion.
We gotta follow that other guy now, too.
We could split up! I'm sure Frey, ace detective, can shadow the shadowy shadow.
???: That won't be necessary.
You're killing my buuuuzzzz, man.
He comes down the stairs.
Ah, the Prince and Lyon! You're here, too, I see.
Shouldn't we follow that man?
Nope, that's not necessary. I have a way to find out where he's going.
Lemme go home an' sleep, then!
You're still in the middle of a job...
Ah, yeah. That's right. What a pain...
Have you noticed a theme yet?
Shall we continue the investigation, then? Are you going to stick around, Your Highness?
There are two ways to recruit Oboro. One way is to help out during the investigation, and why would you not do this? The other is being an idiot and not doing it, in which case you have to do the same thing we already have to do with Murad, which is to say go pester him between plot events until he gives in.
We're going with the former, in case I hadn't made that blindingly obvious enough.
Why you gotta stick your nose in our business? What a pain...
Well, this is the Prince's job. And he's our client. If he wants to come along, he's more than welcome!
I think I like Oboro.
Let's get going, then.
He joins the party here, but sadly he doesn't offer any special skills.
Oboro suggests checking the road, but I'm not sure why.
This time, Lyon's hint is a little less obvious. I only know one road around here...
...but that's not what she's talking about. Instead, we have to head up the stairs.
Norden has disappeared entirely; this is a dead end. Looks like we're going after Mr. Shady, then.
Up the stairs, and...
Ah, welcome back! Nice work!
You've figured it out already? Ah, impressive as always.
The little furry critter runs away up the stairs.
And apparently so should we.
Don't ask me! And I'm enjoying it too much to care.
The mouse leads us to the highest part of town.
More like... mice wor
The mouse disappears, presumably climbing up on Oboro's shoulder or something. Well, pirates get parrots, so...
Uh, what's going on here?
He followed the man who was threatening Norden.
So that man is in the mansion?
That's right. We've got to think over our next move carefully. Let's return to the office for a bit.
So we do that.
And then you saw the thug head into the mansion?
What could it all mean?
Lyon, you're embarrassing yourself. And me. Please stop.
It means Norden knows about a certain skeleton in Lord Barows' closet. That's why they want to shut him up.
...And I bet the skeleton concerns a certain Lordlake uprising!
So if we can speak to Norden, this job will be pretty much over!
Aw. I was enjoying it so much.
Your Highness. I'll ask you again. What would you like to do now? This is our responsibility, after all. You can leave this to us if you want, but you've still more than welcome to come along!
You're not getting rid of me that easily!
Same here! This is so exciting!
But like they say, you can in fact skip this if you want. There's nothing prompting you to go to the inn in the first place, so you may actually miss it entirely, which is a pity because... well, you get to be a detective! What's not to like?
Ah, a good mystery is always addictive, isn't it? But you'll need a bit of a disguise if you want to come along. We can't have Lord Barows finding out that the Prince is investigating the Lordlake uprising, now, can we?
A short while later...
I'm still an apprentice... if anyone ever bothered to listen.
No one ever has, and no one ever will.
Hey, who're those dirty brats?
The Prince and Lyon.
What?! That can't be a hottie like Lyon!
You're not originally from Sol-Falena, are you? Because you would fit right in.
Maybe you'd be able to tell if you cut your damn hair, hippie.
Shigure! And you call yourself a detective!
Anyway, we gotta get goin'! That drunk's knockin' 'em back again!
Ah, is he? Let's go have a talk with him, then, and solve our little mystery.
On it like a bonnet!
YOU guuuuuuuurys again, man?! *hic*
C'mon, c'mon! Get ouuuuuuuta my face, man! Lemme drink in peeeeeeace! *hic* *hic* *hic*
Sir, just give us a quick moment of your time. We'd like to talk about Lordlake. Will you hear us out?
Huuuuuurhhhh?! Who're YOU, crazy man?! *hic*
Who am I? Here. This is who I am.
*hic* You craaaaaaaaaaazy, man! Why you givin' me some stuuuuupid ol' piece o' paaaaaaaaper?!
You don't know? It's called a "business card"...
Anyway, just have a look at it. It'll tell you who I am.
*hic* Oh, you's a deteeeeective, man?! Git ouuuuuuuuuta here! I don't know noooooothin'!
Oh, but I think you do. I said Lordlake. Lordlake.
*hic* Heeeeeeey, man! Nosso looud!
Why should you care if I say "Lordlake"? Worried one of the Barows higher-ups will hear?
*hic* Huuuuurh?! How'd ya--
Shall we go somewhere else, then?
We should take this conversation to my office.
Nothing interesting happens on the way. It appears the operation was a success.
And this must be Norden?
You ain't gettin' anything outta me...
I can't force you to talk, Norden. But I think you'd be better off if you spoke now.
And if I don't? Ya gonna torture me, man?
Do you want me to?
Well, I hate to disappoint you, but we don't use those kinds of techniques here.
Sagiri, Shigure, get the boat ready for departure.
What a pain...
Your Highness, where would you like to take him?
I know, to that "place" where the "stuff" happened! I bet he'll "spill the beans" if we take him "there."
Ah, seeing is believing, isn't it? Let's go.
And so we do...
Just in time to evade the competition.
We're back to that dock we visited a few updates back...
...and Shigure and Sagiri are playable characters!
They even have a unite, Case Closed, which deals 1.2x damage to one enemy. The most interesting bit, as usual, is the pose at the beginning and end.
They're both a couple of levels higher than out other characters, fast as hell, and Shigure is a parry/counter monster. Then there's the fact that they wield kunai and a ninja-to.
Oh, and Sagiri comes with Shrike, the
Clearly, what we're actually dealing with here are ninja detectives from space.
We've no other business around here, so it's straight to Lordlake again.
Norden doesn't seem to appreciate the view more than anyone else in the group.
Is this the first time you've been back since the uprising, Norden? Take a look. Pretty bad, wouldn't you say? Or do you like that "scorched earth" look in your towns?
Poor guy. All this is going to make him sober.
You can't pin this on me! It WASN'T my fault!!!
No, I think you realize all too well the seriousness of your crime. That's why you refuse to talk and attempt to drink your memories away. Am I right?
...What else can I do? I can't change the past!
...But this! It's inhumane!
Then you know what you have to do. You need to atone for your sins, or you won't be able to go on living.
Well, that's up to the people who are suffering due to your crime. But if you refuse to atone, you'll only add to your guilt.
I need to think...
What a pain! What's there to think about, man? You--
Shigure, that's enough for now. Let's go back.
Lordlake itself is the same as always, and looking through it once was depressing enough. We aren't staying longer than we have to.
...that's not a good sign.
Barows soldiers! What are they doing here?
Soldier: There they are! Those are the damn Godwin scum!
Hey that's uncalled for. I'm gonna have to teach you a lesson.
Soldier: We've seen you lurking around Barows mansion! Give up, or you'll be sorry!
Oh, that's scary, coming from a generic NPC.
*sigh* It's come to this, then?
Yes. Let's get it over with.
What should we do?!
LESS TALKING MORE STABBING
You got it!
Fine, fine! Man, what a pain...
Soldier: It's a fight you want, eh? Don't expect any mercy from us!
We didn't get any.
They didn't, either.
Well, that's that. Let's leave the scene for now. I'm sure reinforcements are on the way.
I've seen random encounters with more spirit.
Sorry... This is my fault.
Don't worry about it! This is our job. We're used to it!
I wonder why they attacked all of a sudden...
I don't think the House of Barows was too worried about Norden talking on his own. But when we started moving in on him, they felt threatened... As well they should have!
So they decided to silence him?
Yeah, that sounds about right.
Your Highness, please forgive me...
I will tell you everything I know about the Lordlake uprising.
However... I will need some time to get my head together. I'll tell you everything you need to know, though. I promise...
It's okay, Norden. I can understand where you're coming from. I'm just glad you finally decided to come clean.
Your Highness, leave the rest to us! We'll need to hide Norden for a while to keep him safe, but don't worry. We'll pay you a visit with the truth when you need it, Your Highness!
All the detectives (and Norden) leave the party, and we're dropped off in Raftfleet. Mission accomplished! It's time we went back and told everyone the good news. Next up, an unexpected reunion!