Part 17: Claus Failures
So, we now have two possible pact rings but they're bust so we can't do anything else with them. We might be able to get them fixed, but they were made by both dwarves and elves... Dwarves are seemingly all long dead, and the only elves we know are Arche and Lundgrom. Arche is completely useless in this matter, otherwise she'd have fixed them in the mine, but Lundgrom might be able to help us in some form. Thus: back to Alvanista!
: By the looks on your faces, I take it that your search bore some fruit?
: Yes, we reached the lowest level of the Moria Mine.
: Oh ho! That's very impressive! If you reached the lowest level, you must've gone through quite a lot.
: We were able to locate the Pact Rings...
: So you can finally form the pact with Luna?
: With an uninspiring response like that, I take it there's still some obstacle?
: This isn't a good place for it. Let's finish this discussion outside.
Fortunately, everything gets explained off-screen.
: So you need to find a way to repair those broken rings...
: Do you know of any possible way?
: I have a close friend named Edward. He's a Sorcerer and also serves as an adviser to this country. He once did research on the Pact Rings.
: Where might we be able to find him?
: Cross the bright southwest of Alvanista; his mansion lies just west of there. Just a moment, let me write a letter for you.
: Now then, if you'll excuse me. Best of luck to you.
: Shall we make our way to Edward's house?
: What's wrong, Cless?
: It's nothing...
: Just something buzzing in my ears...
: Cless, are you all right!?
: Y, yeah... I'm fine...
: I'm just hearing things.
Well, that sure was weird. Anyway, this Edward fellow might be able to help us. And he lives nearby too! That's nice and convenient.
Skit: Former Researcher?
: Did, meaning that he's no longer doing it, right?
: But Lundgrom is the one who said we should meet him, so he must believe that he'll be able to help us.
Skit: Edward's Mansion
: He lives west across the bridge that's southwest of Alvanista, right?
: Yeah, that's where his mansion should be.
: Hopefully, he'll have a way to repair the rings.
It's surprising just how close to Alvanista the mansion is; you can still see part of the town in the background.
: My, an introduction from Lord Lundgrom. I'm Edward's wife. Please call me Sif. I'm very sorry, but he isn't home at the moment.
: Well, our business is a bit urgent actually...
: Since you had an introduction from Lord Lundgrom, I suppose I can tell you this... Actually, my husband knows that in this coming war, Alvanista will be all but powerless to turn the tides of battle.
: Do you know where he was headed?
: I believe that he said his first destination was Freyland.
: Thank you, Sif.
: If you have the opportunity to meet him, could you give him a message for me? Just that... that we're all doing well here.
: Of course. When we meet him, we'll be sure to give him your message.
: We'll have to hurry if we want to catch up to him. Shall we head for Freyland then?
Well, back to the desert we go... for the worst part of the entire game too. Joy...
Skit: Moments Too Late
: There's nothing we can do, it's not like Edward knew we were coming.
: That guy said Edward was traveling across Freyland.
: If we hurry, we may be able to catch up to him.
Skit: Freyland, The Desert
: For now, all we can do is search for him.
: But isn't Freyland a desert?
: That's right. He may be resting in a city in that area.
Last time we visited Freyland, we didn't really have an excuse to do anything beyond the one dungeon in it. We did pretty much everything except one thing, and that's because this one thing sucks. And we have to do it now.
Skit: Search Party
: How are we supposed to search an area this vast?
: We should stop in a city first. If we ask around, we might be able to learn something.
: Regardless, the heat is incredible... The sun is really burning bright...
Just outside of the one town in the desert,Cless picked up Guardian Field... er, Divine Seal. This leaves Cless completely defenseless if there's something on the other side of him, and it deals Light elemental damage too so the few times I can think of maybe using it it's worthless. At least it still knocks things back if they so much as touch the field.
: Anyone traveling this desert must have stopped in this village.
: Let's try asking that man.
Villager: Edward? Oh, yeah, that traveler came through just recently.
: Do you happen to know where he is now?
Villager: He seemed to be in a hurry, like he had some business to take care of... I'd imagine that he probably made his way to the oasis to the southeast of the village by now.
...This will end exactly how you think it's going to end. Since we're already in town, though, let's sell some crap we don't need any more!
Not bad for a crap axe and a spare copy of the Liber Ivonis, huh? These two basically amount to everything I get from this but I add the rest of the out-dated equipment to the pile too. EXCEPT the Pin-Up Mag. All in all, I come out of here with around 70,000 Gald in total which isn't bad but it's still not enough. To get the four items I really want to buy, I'll need 230k. Minimum.
Skit: The Wrong Season
: It certainly is. Can we find a place in the shade to rest?
: Ugh, so hot... If I don't get some ice cream, I'm gonna die!
: What are you talking about? Summer is the season to eat watermelon!
: It isn't summer, this is just a desert...
: Anyway, I really need to get just a swig of water.
As you have probably already guessed...
Edward managed to evade us....
Old Man: You what? You want to find some snails?
Old Man: Just now you asked about escargot, right?
: It was Edward! You only got the first letter right!
Old Man: That was a joke.
Again and again...
Skit: Deserted Land
: Edward has to be here somewhere.
: Let's start by finding a city. We need to gather some information.
: Let's get in the shade already! Shade!
: It's rather hot...
...And again. I'm beginning to suspect this might not be worth the effort.
: Looks like we just missed him...
: Let's hurry back.
If he's just gone into the inn, he can't get away from us so it looks like we're finally done!
Skit: Lack of Luck
: Honestly. We must've crossed paths so many times already.
: Until we can meet Edward, we aren't going to get anywhere. Let's return to Olive Village.
Skit: Edward in Olive
: In that case, we'd better hurry back to Olive too.
: Right, otherwise he may set out again...
Innkeeper: Yeah, he came here all right. He was searching for Basilisk Scales, it seems he was asking about them all over the place.
: Oh, they're used in that miracle cure, right?
Innkeeper: Yeah, exactly. I'm impressed you know it. But they're not easy to get, especially in large quantities.
: Basilisks? What are those?
: They're a terrible monster for the people of the desert.
Innkeeper: Edward did leave a message here. He said that if anyone came here in possession of Basilisk Scales, let him know right away. After saying that, he bounded out of here again.
: If we can bring down a Basilisk, we may be able to collect its scales.
"May" rather than "will." That's quite an important distinction.
Skit: Quickest Way To Edward
: Based on what the innkeeper said, it seems like that's the fastest way to meet him.
: B, but I don't want to be turned into a rock...
: A, as long as we're prepared for battle, that shouldn't be a problem.
: Exactly. And once we've brought down a Basilisk, we should be able to get some of its scales.
There's a couple of problems with this plan.
Basilisks aren't exactly guaranteed to appear in every fight. They're even the rarest thing to fight in the desert, which is bad enough.
Skit: Basilisk Scales
: If we do, we should be able to meet Edward.
: So where do we find these Basilisks?
: They should appear in the Freyland desert.
Assuming you manage to finally find one, taking it down isn't as easy as it sounds either.
They have almost as much HP as Efreet, but aren't as easy to hit since they have a much smaller hit box. They have similar elemental defense, but the AI isn't dumb enough to cast Efreet or Eruption at least. They WILL try to use Gnome or Glaive though, unless you disable that.
That's not what make Basilisks annoying though; their regular attack has a massive range, given their size, and they'll randomly use Stone Gaze which petrifies whoever it hits (and deals damage too, just in case). If everyone gets petrified, sorry, you lose, game over! This can be negated by using a Liqueur Bottle on someone, i.e. Cless, but that's only the worst part of the fight alleviated.
The worst part about this entire fetch quest is, by far, the fact that they aren't guaranteed to drop the scale when you finally find and kill one. It's not even likely to happen either. It's a rare drop, from a rare enemy. That takes a while to kill (for a random encounter). This is incredibly fucking tedious busy work, and there's no excuse for having to do this.
Well, that's one down. Only... only four more to go...