Part 13: CH13: PascalCH13: Pascal
: They stopped at a small cabin so that Richard could explain the situation.
: Sophie, don't go too far.
: All right.
: My father was murdered...
: Yes. He was killed by the very knights who were sworn to protect him.
They would have killed me as well, but I hid among the bodies and escaped detection.
When the enemy dropped their guard, I went to the secret passage and fled for my life.
: I can't believe the knights would do such a thing...
: My father's death was a shock, but the fact he was betrayed by his own knights makes it far worse.
: And I was a student at the Knight Academy...
: Yes, I'd heard you left home to join them.
: I did, but then I resigned. My father also died recently, and I was to become the next lord of Lhant. Had I stayed, I...I might be chasing you down right now.
: But you're not. You saved my life, just as you did seven years ago.
I thought of that day as I fled the castle. I was so desperately hoping you would somehow come to my aid. And you did. You actually did. ...You have no idea how happy I was to see you, Asbel. You're...special. You're one of the only people I've ever really trusted...
So what's your plan? Will you return home when this is over?
: Things are...complicated. The alliance with Strahta has changed everything.
: Alliance with Strahta? What are you talking about? My father would have never agreed to an alliance. He always took a hard line on such matters.
: The Strahtan military is stationed in Lhant right now. They just arrived a little while ago.
: So around the time of the uprising. Interesting...
: Asbel! Someone's coming!
???: It's the prince! He's here!
: Damn! They found us.
This isn't remotely challenging.
: I think you mean "were" there Asbel.
: These men serve my uncle, Archduke Cedric. ...The man who now calls himself our king.
My uncle sought to usurp the throne for years, and now, it seems, he has resorted to force.
: Why would he do such a thing...
: Asbel, listen.
When we reach Duke Dalen, I plan to build an army and avenge my father's death. Will you fight with me? I need your strength for the coming battle.
: Of course! I don't know how much help I can be, but I'll do whatever I can.
: Yes. Join us. It'll be just like it was seven years ago.
: But it couldn't.
: What? What happened?
: I-It's strange. I just felt a chill run up my arm.
: I'm fine. But we should get to Gralesyde as quickly as we can.
Skit: Class Dismissed
: I know I dragged you into this, but I can't do anything about the food situation right now. I'm very sorry.
: Oh, no, it's not your fault at all. ...Um, by the way. Remember when you said the knights assassinated your father? Are you sure about that?
: I know it's difficult for you to hear, but yes. I am.
: I'm no longer involved with them.
: Knight or not, Asbel, I am very happy that you are not counted among my enemies.
: Believe me, Richard, I have no desire to fight you. I just... I wish I could have seen the academy one last time.
: Perhaps we should take a little stroll to the academy, then? Maybe bring my uncle a little present?
: H-Hey! That's not what I meant!
Skit: A Place to Belong
: Hey, Sophie, listen. I know I've made things difficult for you up until now.
: What? No, I'm fine.
: You still don't know who you are or where you're from. But I don't want you to worry about that. I'll take care of you.
: Okay. But...I'm not worried.
: But that's crazy. You have to be worried! What if...what if you never find out where you belong?
While along the way I decided to try out the Preorder DLC costumes for a little bit. These are all guys from Tales of Destiny I or II if I remember correctly.
Also, they change the music for battles if you wear them.
: There was an obstacle between them and Gralesyde.
I didn't really notice until this point how creepy this outfit on a 14 year old girl is, mostly because I didn't see it close up before.
: Those two guards belong to my uncle.
: Okay. Is there another way around?
I know of some other routes, but they all run through the capital.
: This is bad. We can't possibly return to Barona now.
: Sophie didn't like it.
: Once more! Please! Wait! Let me touch her again!
: Pascal had no idea how close she came to becoming a kebob.
: See a real what?
: I said "see" cause I just saw her illusion a little while ago!
: Illusion? What are you talking about?
Do you know something about Sophie?
: Well, yeah I know all about her, but it's kinda hard to explain.
It'll be faster to just show you. Come on! It's right over there!
: You can use this to just pshew right down to the underground ruins, ya know? That's where the illusion is.
: There are ruins here?
: I know, right?! I was totally surprised when I went down there, but boy, was it something! Not having to deal with that stupid bridge was a nice bonus, too.
: Were there soldiers in the ruins?
: Nope! Just me!
: What do you think, Asbel?
: Might as well take a look. We can't do anything here, anyway. Plus, I'm interested in this illusion of Sophie.
: All right. That's good enough for me.
: You're coming? Awesome! Let's all go together then!
: Wait, you're coming with us?
: Well, sure!
: I think she's offering to show us around the ruins. ...Right?
: Of course!
All right. I guess we're all going in.
Skit: Bilateral Alliance
: No. ...Asbel??
: Too bad! He's waaaay over there.
: Do you think Archduke Cedric could be in league with Strahta?
: It's possible. My uncle had been handling the kingdom's foreign affairs for many years. With my father's ailing health, he had no one to answer to.
: So, in other words, this alliance between Strahta and Lhant-
: Though it pains me to say it, it may have indeed been officially sanctioned by the crown.
: None of them had seen a teleporter before.
: What just happened?
: Ta-daaa! We're in the ruins!
: But we didn't move. How did we end up somewhere else?
: It's no big deal. It's just a little woobly wobbly ka-tang kinda thing. You know?
: I don't get it.
: It's cool, right? Who'da thought a huge place like this would be right under our toes?
: These ruins don't look like any place I've ever seen.
: That's 'cause the Amarcians built 'em a long time ago! So of course they're gonna look different.
: The who?
: The Amarcians! They're a tribe that left ruins like this all over the world.
: Are you some kind of archaeologist, Pascal?
: Hmm... Yeah, I guess. Something like that.
But since I taught you something new, you should let me touch your friend. Come on, pleeeease?
: Boo! You're no fun.
: Can we just go, please?
Dungeon Video (Part 1)
So most of this dungeon is riding around on these floating blocks.
: They made it to the illusion's projector.
: Something's approaching. The footsteps sound...strange...
: Here it comes!
I don't really like this boss.
This spinning tail attack is a feature common to enemies with long tails like that. It's one of only two of his attacks.
This is the real problem. When you see this shit GET BACK ASAP.
So being petrified isn't as bad as it is in other games. You don't lose for having all your party petrified and it wears off after a little while, but you can get the shit beaten out of you while you're waiting for it to drop.
Another problem is that your party here has no true ranged character. Pascal there has short-ranged spells and everyone else uses melee weapons.
Thank Namco-Bandai for inherited titles. This Arte is what makes the fight bearable.
In the background here you can see the room we're in.
: Phew. That was unexpected.
: It's a cinch! You just tappy tappy on this thingamabob here, and then ka-chunk on the little dongle.
: I have no idea what you're trying to say.
: Just try it! Oh, come on, it's super easy!
It doesn't come across in images, but that red thing has started spinning really fast.
: All right, all right. Step aside, I'll show you.
: It moved...
: It's me.
: This must be the illusion Pascal was talking about.
: She's right. It looks just like Sophie.
: I know, right?! They're identical! NOW do you see why I totally wanted to touch Sophie?
: So was this device also constructed long ago by the Amarcians?
: Yeah, probably. But I dunno. I'm still kinda researching it.
: Awww. There it goes!
: Sophie, did seeing the illusion help you remember anything?
: I see...
: So we don't know how this is connected to her, or if it's even connected at all.
: I know. I wish I had a manual or whatever. And this writing's all smudgy and faded, so I can't really tell what it says. If I squint real hard, I can read the word "Lambda." But that's it.
: Lambda? What does that mean?
: Lamb...da. I feel like...I heard that word a long time ago...
: Lambda... Pascal, are you sure you can't make out anything else?
: Mmm... Nope! Sorry, show's over.
: We don't have time to sit around thinking about it. Let's keep moving.
Skit: Takes One to Know One
: About the Sophie that appeared in the machine! It was nearly a perfect double of her. Don't you even have a theory?
: Not really.
: That isn't like you at all, Asbel. Aren't you supposed to be her guardian?
: Supposed to be, but... I don't know anymore.
: Come on Asbel, get it together! You're all she has!
: I am?
: You belong by her side. Having found myself in a similar situation, it is a feeling I know well. In fact, even now I continue to be in your debt.
: Thanks, Richard. I appreciate it.
: Why are you thanking me?
: Well, it just felt like the right thing to say.
Here's the second half of the dungeon.
Skit: Gut Archaeology
: I've heard of cryas that could no longer absorb eleth, but I've never actually seen any.
: I can't even begin to imagine how long these ruins have been here.
: Oh, I'd say like 500 years. That's a guesstimate, but we're directly beneath a river that flows from Lake Grale to the sea...
: Which means?
: Well, I can't imagine someone just walked over and dropped these relics off for no apparent reason. It means they're equally as old.
C'mon, think about it. No one would be dumb enough to just build these ruins right under a river! Although, that would've been interesting to see.
: So, they're at least 500 years old, but they could be older?
: Why not? 500 years, 1,000 years, something like that.
: Wow, this place is a lot older than I expected.
: Eventually they made their way out.
: Now we can continue to Gralesyde.
: Oh! You're going to Gralesyde?
: You've been a great help, Pascal. Thank you.
: Wait! Hang on! I wanna go to Gralesyde, too!
: You don't have some sneaky reason for following us around, do you?
: Heh heh heh... Maaaaybe.
: Are you serious?
: It's cause I wanna get closer to Sophie!
: Yeah! I wanna touch her and study her and learn about her and...uh...touch her.
: So can I come? Please, Asbel? Please...um...whoever you are?
: Richard, got it.
Hey, Sophie! Who do you like best? Me, Asbel, or the other guy?
: Awwww! Come on! I want you to like me, too!
: She's a bit...eccentric, but I think we can trust her.
: All right, Pascal. You can come with us.
: Yaaay! It's like they say, trips are all about meeting people, right?
: Now then, shall we head for Gralesyde?
: Richard, what's wrong?
: Nothing. I'm fine.
: We've been walking for a while. Do you want to rest?
: I don't want to slow you down.
: Hey, come on! If you feel all woobly, you shouldn't push it. We don't mind taking a little break. Right, Sophie?
: I...I'm sorry. You startled me...
: Aw, don't worry, Sophie! He's just kinda shy. He probably just has a thing for you or whatever, 'cause he got all worked up when you touched him.
: ...Wait. Ohmigosh, that means he's my RIVAL!
Sophie, you can't like him, too!
You just said you liked Asbel the best! You can't keep changing your mind like this!
: What's gotten into you two?
: Asbel, Sophie, I'm sorry. Please forgive me. I think... I'm just very tired.
: Richard... Are we friends?
: Yes, Sophie. Of course we are.
: Let's keep going.
Skit: Risk Management
: (That was a quick change.)
: Well? Come on, I ain't got all day!
: Sophie, Richard, and I have known each other for seven years. ...If this is the same Sophie.
: The same Sophie? What do you mean?
: Um... How should I explain this...?
: Come ooon! What is it?!
: (Hm...I should be careful what I say to her...)
: Hey, are you keeping secrets or whatever?
: Uh, well... Look. Back in my hometown, we made a pact of friendship. And Sophie was part of the group.
: Ohmigosh, friends are AWESOME! I totally wanna make a friendship pact with everyone!
Skit: Settling for Number Two
: It's on the shores of Lake Grale, ruled by a man named Duke Dalen.
: Can I also ask who this Duke Dalen is?
: He's a distant relative of the royal family, yet he maintains the largest standing army in the kingdom.
Dalen's father saved my father's life a long time ago, and our families have been close ever since.
: And you think Duke Dalen will...save you?
: I think he can be a great deal of help. Perhaps more so than anyone else.
: More than anyone?
: No! I just mean... It's good to have such a powerful ally at your side!