Part 16: CH12: Pain and GainCH12: Pain and Gain
: Jude's hometown's seahaven seemed entirely peaceful, nestled at the edge of Fenmont's night clime.
: Then Leia.
Girl: Ah! Roadblock! Stop!
: Ah! You're right. Slower! Go slower!
: Surprisingly no one else was crippled.
: Sorry for the close call. Are you okay?
: Hi Leia... I'm home now.
: What the-- Jude? Huh? Jude! What're you doing here?
: I'm home, and what are you doing here?
: W-Well, I was just-- These kids wanted to have a race, you see? And well, um...
And this little guy here is a real speed demon, so I had him push me in the wheelchair to keep things fair.
: And lemme guess, you just had to be the winner, huh?
: Oh, yeah. Nevermind that, Jude. So, tell me, who's your friend?
: I suppose that you know this girl?
: Uh, yeah. She's an old friend of mine.
Umm, how do I explain this? Leia, meet Milla.
: Hello, Milla.
: Hey, what's wrong with her legs?
Run and get the doctor, stat! This woman needs help!
Boy: Right! Roger!
Are you heading home? I'll come with you. Here, use this.
: Wait, the wheelchair that was dunked in the sea?
: Wheelchairs are designed not to absorb fluids. Although a lot of 'em will absorb liquid gallium.
: The clinic wasn't too far along the town's main, er, only street.
Man: Hmm? Who's this?
: A female clinician came out to evaluate the waiting room.
Man: Oh, you ready to see me now, Doctor?
: I'm sorry, everyone. We have an urgent case here. You'll have to come back in the afternoon.
: Sorry, everybody! We'll catch you later. Promise!
Old Man: Haha. You've really gotten into the swing of things here, eh, Leia?
: Best nurse in town! Also the only nurse in town, but, hey, you know how it is.
: Bring her in.
: Thank you.
: Try not to worry. Your friend is in good hands. Have faith in your dad.
You look like you've been through the ringer. Want to tell me about it?
: Yeah, well, I don't even know where to start, Mom.
: How about at the beginning?
: Well, I guess it all began with my professor back in Fennmont...
Man: Doctor! Doctor!
: Yes? What's wrong?
Man: My grandpa was working on the roof and he fell. He's out cold!
: Don't worry. I'll be right there.
I need to leave for a bit. Hold down the fort, will you?
: Huh? But Jude just got here!
: I'm sorry. We'll have to catch up later.
: It's fine, Mom. Duty calls.
: Looks like the little crybaby...
...Is all grown up now, huh?
: Crybaby? I hardly ever cried as a kid.
: Bah! I was just trying to get a rise from you. You're no fun.
: Hmm... So serious. I guess the big city turned you into a bona fide adult.
: Come with me.
"Milla Side posted:
Thanks Feinne for the video here.
: Hello there. I'm Dr. Mathis. Please, just lie still.
: I'm Milla. Are you Jude's father?
Can you flex your legs?
: No. I can barely feel anything below my waist.
: I see...
Ellen, you can leave now. Go check on Jude.
: Oh, okay.
: I need to run a few tests. Please, bear with me for a bit longer.
: Was that Jude's mother?
: Yes. Jude's our only child.
What exactly is your relationship with my son, anyway?
: It's complicated. We're friends. I gave him a pendant as a token of our friendship.
: Friends, huh?
Pardon my skepticism. You look much older than him, and you're a woman.
: Jude tells me you once healed a human who shared my condition.
Would you give me the same treatment?
: Possibly. It depends on how these tests come out.
: I see.
: Either way, you'll need to remain in the clinic for a while.
: Jude's father didn't think much of his care.
: The patient is suffering from more than just leg injuries. Your journey has left her with a drastically weakened immune system.
Why didn't you prescribe rest?
: Answer me. Surely they taught you better than this in med school.
: I'm... I'm sorry.
: Have you informed her of the nature of her condition?
: I did. I told her you might be able to heal her.
: So you lied to her.
: What? It's the truth, isn't it? You've done it before.
: Jude, Jude, Jude...
You seem to think that using an aspyrixis is a simple procedure, as routine as an appendectomy.
: There's a funny linguistic thing going on here, with how aspyrixis is pronounced in their language. I'll explain later.
: In this case, it is impossible.
: But Dad...
The device attaches directly to the nerves and causes incredible agony. Few patients can bear it.
: If Jude had a little more spine, he might could have argued that Milla could take it.
: Why exactly are you home, anyway? What happened to med school?
: Answer me, young man!
: So this is how you're going to be?
: Thank you for the consultation.
: What got into him?
: (The procedure might be explained in the medical files. If Dad won't help me, I'll do it myself.)
(Better check the archives.)
Milla Side posted:
Another thanks to Feinne for this video.
: How are you feeling?
: Fine. I still can't move my legs, of course, but otherwise no complaints. How were the test results?
: I think my husb-- Dr. Mathis should speak to you directly about that.
May I ask you a question?
: Of course.
: How do you and my son know each other?
: What's so funny?
: Sorry. It's just that your husband asked me the same question.
I suppose this is what's known as "parental concern". I get it now. You humans have so many admirable traits.
: We humans?
: Jude rescued me from a tough spot back in Fennmont.
Because of his actions, he couldn't go back to the city. He's been traveling with me ever since.
: That sounds like Jude. He hasn't changed.
: What do you mean?
: Jude's always been too quick to help others. Even when he was a boy.
: To his detriment, I take it?
: His friends teased him for it. He was bullied.
: Yet he didn't stop?
: He'd come home all beaten up. But underneath the bruises, he'd still be smiling. What's a mother to do?
: So that's why you...
: Ellen, we're getting busy out here. You know this is the only clinic in town.
: You need to stop spoiling Jude. He's a man now. Coddle him and he'll just grow softer.
: Hmm... So this is also "parental concern".
: Although, the funny thing is, he just stood up to me for the first time in his life.
He ordered me to use an aspyrixis on you.
: An aspyrixis?
It would cure me? Let me walk again?
: Perhaps you are a good influence on him. In his efforts to help you, he seems to have grown bolder.
As a father, I'm pleased. But as a doctor, I'm afraid the treatment isn't an option, despite my son's persistence.
: I see. So that's your final decision.
: It is. I'm sorry.
: Very well. I'll just have to find some other way.
: I see. I'm glad you understand.
The procedure itself is simple enough. But it's not like you'd regain mobility right away.
: I'd need to apply spirit artes directly to your nervous system. You couldn't move a finger without screaming. The pain would be excruciating.
Even in the best-case scenario, it would take several months before your nerves adapt to the artes and you could move again.
: Why are you telling me this?
: We can't get the spirit fossils needed to run the device anymore.
Even if we could, the mana in the fossils escapes just as soon as you uncover them.
It's a shame. The aspyrixis might've cured you.
: I knew you wouldn't give up just because your dad turned you away.
: Thanks, Leia.
Wow, my old man really is a genius. They sure didn't teach us techniques like this at med school.
Apparently, it requires a special stone. The kind of stone isn't written here, though.
: Dad took detailed notes of the entire procedure. As long as we have the device, we should be able to heal Milla.
: But is Milla up for it? I heard the last patient to undergo the procedure cried uncle after eight seconds.
He chose to remain paralyzed rather than endure the treatment.
: It's that painful, huh?
: You know, maybe you should just forget about this.
What if your friend goes through all that torture for nothing?
: It's worth the risk. I'm going to do it.
: If you say so.
Well, you should check the box up there.
: What's in it?
I found it after I started helping here. When I was cleaning up.
: Let's go to Milla's room. I want to try this.
: Ah, wait. I'm coming, too.
If someone posts what this says in the thread, I'll put it here.
: What are you doing?
: We can't let my dad hear us.
: Why not?
: We're going to use the aspyrixis on you now.
: But your father just told me it was impossible.
: Leia, give me a hand.
: Ah, sure.
Here, you'll want to lay down on your side.
: Feel anything? Any pain?
: No, nothing at all. My legs still won't budge either.
: Why isn't it working?
: Your father said that an aspyrixis needs a spirit fossil or it won't work.
: A spirit fossil?! Those things really exist?!
: Ohh, so the special stone mentioned in the medical files is a spirit fossil.
: Your father also said the fossil has to be used immediately after it's uncovered or it loses its mana.
: Great, as if the procedure wasn't already tricky enough.
: Hold on... I swear I remember that they used to find spirit fossils down in the Felgana Mine.
: Are you serious?!
: Whoa, geez, be quiet! It's just something my dad told me.
: Milla, it sounds like we need to take you out for some field medicine.
: That seems like a lot of work. You'll do that for me?
No shit it's gonna be some work.
: Thank you.
: Jude, can you help her into the wheelchair?
: What about you?
: I have to get stuff ready. I'll meet you at the edge of town.
: The mine's been closed for a while, so I hope you're ready for some spelunking!
We've had six party members.
Skit Video: City Life
: Was it like, super cosmopolitan? Were you able to make friends?
: I dunno. It was pretty normal.
: What, that's it? That's all you have to say?
: You're always boring everyone with long-winded explanations, but when I ask a question, I get the cold shoulder?
: Come on, you're blowing things out of proportion.
: Listen! You're gonna talk, and you're gonna tell me everything! You have ten seconds!
: Ten. Nine. Eight...
: Well, there was a nurse at the school named Prinn, who was always really nice to me.
But on the day I went to see my professor, I got attacked by a girl in red clothes.
So then I couldn't go back to the school anymore. Although that did result in me meeting Milla.
Oh, and in terms of other friends, I met this girl named Elize--
: Fine, I got it! Message received, loud and clear!
: You met all sorts of other girls while you were away. Good job, Jude! I'm soooo happy for you!
: I see you haven't changed a bit.
: Leia lead them to the mine easily enough.
: So, from what I understand, spirit fossils are a very particular color. Oh, and they make sounds, too.
: Huh, crazy.
: Do you know what happened?
: No. Maybe there was some kind of accident. They might have closed the mine because it was dangerous.
: That doesn't sound good.
: Come on, don't chicken out! We've come too far to quit now!
: You sure are fired up today.
: An adventure's waiting! Let's make the most of it!
: Ready to race? Whoever finds the most spirit fossils wins!
Just be careful, okay? I don't want to see you get hurt.
: Oh Jude. You always know how to poop on my party.
: She handed him a pickaxe and took one for herself. He ended up doing most of the work.
: Now, let's see... I guess it's too much to ask to find some lying around in plain sight.
: Milla, wait here.
OK so the gimmick for this dungeon is that you have to bust open these rocks by charging up Jude's pick by mashing the x button. I can't seem to mash fast enough to reliably break these in one hit.
: This has to be it.
: You find something, Jude?
Whoa. What's that?
: But... They're so teensy-weensy.
: Hey, I think I feel a slight breeze.
I don't think this is a dead end.
You two sit tight. I want to see where it goes.
: And let you beat me? Ha!
: Leia, come on. It's too dangerous.
: And that's why we should all go together.
: Yep. What's the point of bringing me along if you're just going to go all lone wolf?
Just watch your step, okay?
: Don't worry about it.
I actually kind of like this dungeon, how many times you have to press X excepted.
So I've got a new character to control here.
Unlike most JRPG ladies who happen to be he main character's childhood friend/love interest, use staves, and know healing spells, Leia is more likely to beat you to death with it than use its magical properties to heal. Cerberus strike here is an earth spell, not very good on a Rock Djinn.
It ends in a rather massive uppercut.
At this point I recalled I hadn't actually checked out her control binds. She does have some heals, but generally I'm going to have Elize carry that burden. Soaring Vortex is IIRC exactly the same for her as for Jude. Sharpness boosts the attack of the targeted party member.
Honestly I ran from most of the fights in here, I don't really want to do a lot of 2v3 or worse battles. This might cause a problem later.
Skit Video: Do-Gooder Jude
: Maybe it's time to call it a day? You shouldn't overdo it with your condition.
: What do you mean "my condition"?! I haven't been sick since I was a kid!
: That wasn't that long ago.
: Wow, welcome back, Jude! Let the nagging begin!
: What's that supposed to mean?
: And here I thought that Fennmont had changed you.
: You should stop worrying so much.
: Leia, listen to me! This is serious!
: Denied. I can't hear you.
Skit Video: Impulse Control
: And I see you're as merciless as ever with that staff.
: Haha, care for a little sparring bout?
: Oh, that's right. Jude mentioned that he had a friend he used to train with. That must have been you.
: Yep. It started out as part of Leia's physical therapy.
: That's right! My mom was the instructor, and she trained us good.
: I see. But I can't respect a bully.
: I hear you beat Jude until he was covered in bruises.
: Haha, look, I can explain.
: What are you telling other people?! I can't believe you!
: Oh! Sorry!
: Ah. Now it all makes sense.
: Hey, you should probably head back.
: Uh, hey, what exactly is a spirit fossil, anyway?
: When a spirit loses its mana, it manifests in this world as a stone.
: In other words, you're saying the spirit dies?
I've never really heard of something like that happening though. Is that like a city thing?
: Not that I know of.
: Hmm... So does that mean a whole bunch of spirits died ages ago?
: Most of the spirits died before I was born.
: What do you mean?
: I get the feeling that's really important.
: No way!
: The important thing is figuring out what part of that is most important.
: This can wait.
We really should get moving.
: "We really should get moving." Bleh!
: Whoa, hey, no need to get all angry on me.
: Wait, did you just hear something?
: Hear what?
: That! A ringing.
Where is it coming from?
: Good ears! Let's check it out!
: This is definitely the right spot.
: Did it move?
: Hey, over there, more spirit fossil fragments.
The big one must be in there.
: Yeah, but rocks don't just get up and move by themselves.
: If you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.
: Howe's Egg Principle. Yes, I suppose so.
: You two stay here. This time I really am going in by myself.
: Keep an eye on Milla.
: Hey, hold on!
: You hear that? All the sounds. They keep getting louder and softer.
: Watch yourselves.
: It's so pretty.
: Watch out! Get back, Leia!
: Look out!
: What's that?! Look at its head, Jude!
: Is that the spirit fossil?!
Leia, don't get too close!
: Don't worry, Jude. I'll get that fossil! Watch this!
Boss fight! Unfortunately I might be a little underleveled. He's level 22, I'm 17.
Its main source of damage is to burrow through the ground and rush up at us. It can do that either horizontally like this (which is named "Rush Drill"), or vertically (which is called "Rising Rush").
I need to check and see if Leia's missing a weapon upgrade, as well. She seems to be doing less damage than Jude.
When Leia back-steps an opponent with perfect timing, the staff extends, increasing her reach. That's her player-controlled gimmick. You'll see her partner gimmick later.
For some reason I had a lot of trouble backstepping his vertical pop-out attack. Maybe it's just that you can't backstep everything in this game like you could do in Graces.
He's got an arm-sweep attack with a huge range, as well as a breath weapon called "Grand Breath" that I don't really pay much attention to.
Call out summons an add, which looks like a smaller version of him but is weak to wind and way less dangerous, having no ability to dive like crazy.
I'm pretty sure this boss gets invincibility frames when he's moving in and out of the ground, which is like half the time. Fuck this boss. Note my weapon going through him doing no damage.
Big guy dead. The little guy can cast spells but I'm set up for major earth resistance.
I honestly thought Jude had leveled twice there, but it seems not.
: Careful, wait!
: Come on! The hard part's over!
: We did it!
: Ugh, I hate it when that happens.
: Jude! Leia!
: Aside from her mission, nothing motivated Milla like her friends being in trouble.
: The monster, sensing the burst of energy, turned its attention from its prey to her.
: Milla was back.
OK, so we get a moment to upgrade Milla's stats. She's gotten enough XP to keep her even with the party. I buy Binding Sphere rather than Death Knell. I'm sure Feinne will be along later to "correct" me on this. I cut the video there because I have some problems with videos being longer than 15 minutes, and the "take your time messing with the
: Round two.
He's got far more health (33000 to 13500) but we've got 3 people.
For once, an uninterrupted Grand Breath.
It seems to cause Arteseal, which sucks balls.
You might notice I have a LOT of accessories, since I forgot to turn off "Inherit Accessories" when I made my NG+ file. I am in fact supposed to have an earth cape, though. I got one in the dungeon.
Right here I'm trying to figure out which arte works best on him. Feinne will say "death knell" here.
Binding Sphere creates a sphere of pure darkness that damages enemies for a bit after it's created.
I really should have paid more attention to the blue "!" though!
It wasn't too hard to get back into the swing of things though. Flare Bomb is no Death Knell, but it seemed to do just fine at knocking him down.
Flare Tornado is a linked arte from Flame Ring and Spiral Strike. Milla provides the Fire and Leia provides the spin.
Gale Blitz is a linked arte from Wind Lance and Darting Claw. Milla propels Leia forward in a cone of wind.
He's got one new thing, he can make rocks fall from the ceiling.
He's got an attack that picks you up and slams you around.
: You were able to use the aspyrixis!
: It'd take a little getting used to though.
: Goodness. This is some device you humans have come up with.
: How bad's the pain?
: Urgh, well, it's not worse than I imagined but... It's considerable.
: I'm sorry. I should've been more careful.
: But you retrieved the spirit fossil for me.
If anything, I'm in your debt.
: Let's get back to town.
I'll get the wheelchair.
Good. Still in one piece.
(Even with the aspyrixis, Milla won't be able to complete her mission without someone's help.
And that means...
I know what I have to do.)
"Milla Side posted:
Thanks again Feinne.
: You look like you want to say something. You can tell me. Jude can't hear you.
: The thing is, when Jude learned that the aspyrixis would cause you incredible agony...
I thought for sure he'd call off the procedure, even though it could help you.
: Jude knows that there is something I must do.
: Yeah, but still, the old Jude would never do that.
: Sounds like you know why he is the way he is.
: Ever since we arrived here, you've been doing your best to avoid giving him opportunities to step in and help.
: So you noticed.
Jude was always home alone when he was little.
: His parents do seem preoccupied with work.
: Yeah. I don't think Jude ever realized it himself, but...
I think he was really lonely.
: I imagine so, but what does that have to do with how Jude is now?
: I think he's just eager to get involved with other people somehow.
: I get it. He wants to feel needed. That's why he's so helpful.
: Exactly. He would never do anything that might push people away.
But the Jude who came back with you isn't quite the same Jude who left.
I figured that out from watching you. You're the one who changed him.
: I haven't done anything. Jude made his own choices.
: Urgh, sorry, I think I'm at my limit.
: Don't worry. She just passed out.
: I don't mind pushing the wheelchair on the way back.
: Uh, okay... Why the sudden burst of compassion?
: Why? Is there anything wrong with it?
: Well, no. Just unexpected, I guess.
: What can I say?
I'm feeling really inspired by your friend here.