Part 74: Finale: The Whereabouts of Light - Part 2
You look pretty tired. You want to sit down and take a break for a little bit?
Let's get off our feet for a minute, then. For the moment, at least, Grancel seems like it's genuinely at peace.
You really think so?
I'm just glad that we can leave it all up to Dad and everyone else, at least for today. Of course, I really think it should be his responsibility to begin with, since he showed up so late.
Ha ha... Yeah, I suppose so.
Maybe it's just part of his nature.
*sigh*... Oh, well. It's not like we can do anything about it.
But hey! We're actually full bracers now.
Which means we're not beholden to any specific branch and can go wherever we want. Anytime a branch is short-handed and requests help, we'll just take an airliner to get there.
But our newfound freedom will also mean greater responsibilities.
Sure, but I think we'll be able to handle it. I mean, hey! We actually played a major part in stopping a coup.
And it means I'll never have to hear Dad going on about how it worries him when you're not around to keep an eye on me!
Ha ha... Yeah, I think his days of saying that are at an end. You really showed him what you can do!
Still, I think I'd like to stay with you from now on.
Oh... Would I just get on your nerves?
No, no, nothing like that... But...what do you mean by, [stay with] me?
Just that we know each other so well, and we can practically read each other's minds. I think we make a good team, and I'd hate to break it up.
Oh...you mean like for bracer business...
And here I was thinking you were going to tell me your big confession or something...
Estelle...what was that all--
And there's nothing to beat hot weather like ice cream, huh?!
I'll even treat! So you wait right here!
I wonder if she...
Nah... There's no way...
It's been a long time since we last met, hasn't it? So much has happened lately, but things are finally settling down again. People truly thrive the most in peaceful times.
Oh, is something the matter? You look a bit pale. I would have thought you'd generally be in better spirits, now that you've attained full bracer status.
Speaking of which, I truly must congratulate you on your success. So long as, of course, I'm not being too forward in doing so.
I'm a little more used to you now... ...but I still get the shakes a little bit, whenever you look at me.
And in all the cases we've dealt with... There have been people who just [forget] things... You're always there, investigating... No matter where we've gone... Your timing's almost a little too good.
What really clued me in was Kurt's reaction. He lost his memories, too... He said he wasn't feeling so well when he was in the stands... And you were right there with him.
Was it you?
It's no mean feat for one to recognize the manipulation of another's memories.
Allow me to clear away your confusion.
Alba audibly snaps, as the music stops.
It was I who poured a soul back into that empty vessel.
You have the power to twist the minds and memories of men...!
Y-you... You were behind all of this! Which means that Lieutenant Lorence has to be...
It is as you surmise. I was kind enough not to erase his memories, so it took little time for him to return to his normal self. Ha ha... He should be grateful to me.
You're here to finish me off?
Heh... No, nothing of the sort. The first phase of my plan went off without a hitch. Since I've a moment to spare, I simply thought I'd come to see you.
First phase...? The seal in the old ruins...?
The [Gate] which blocks the path to the [Ring]... The first step has been taken in wrenching that gate open.
Hmm-hmm-hmm... And already, there exists no means of closing it again.
I knew this wouldn't be the end of it...
And what is your little 'society' after?!
If you really wish to know, why don't you rejoin? I'm certain that you'd be able to return to active duty in no time. You needn't look so glum. We can get you back into fighting form.
Ha ha... Please, spare me your withering looks. I do understand that you have a family now, whom you regard as important.
You greatly admire your father, to say nothing of the girl you so adore... Even if HE were here, throwing those gifts away would be the actions of an idiot.
And so, I've come here to see you.
Which means that I must congratulate you, Joshua. You are already a free man. I am most grateful for the work that you've done over the past five years.
Oh, don't be so boring. I was expecting a bit more cheer out of you at hearing such news.
Hrm... Perhaps there's a flaw in the design of your emotions...
I've...been helping you...?
Oh, pardon me. I completely forgot to tell you. I never intended you to be an assassin, but rather a spy.
The society took pity on an abandoned child, and so it was seen to that you were protected. During which time, various members have checked in on you and reported on your status. As well as the movements of the Bracer Guild...and any intel about one Cassius Bright.
But of course, YOU wouldn't remember having done things such as that. You were...not yourself, at the time.
Cassius Bright, S-ranked bracer... He is the foremost impediment to the success of our plan. We felt certain he would be quick to act in order to stop any coup d'etat that should occur.
It's allowed us to learn more of his nature and behavior patterns, and get that information out of the country... The intel you've unknowingly fed us has been most useful.
And so, I must thank you again. The past five years have been of inestimable help.
All that time...I spent with Estelle...
Ha ha... Why are you so sad? Has your feigned ignorance not earned you a beloved family, as well as a happy home? If you say nothing, they will never know.
However...it is the sort of thing that might weigh heavily on a fellow. Since your fellow members of the Bright household are such good people. Perhaps a little too good for a monster such as yourself?
You must surely have noticed. Your ability to reason through and execute a solution to a problem, no matter the circumstances... Your physical strength and reflexes, better than an entire squadron of normal soldiers...
You have no place in the lives of normal people. You'll never be happy in their presence again. You can't be!
When it becomes too much for you, you are always welcome to return.
Is this...my punishment? My sister...and Loewe...
What do I do...?
...It's getting late, too...
I'm such an idiot. I need to learn to think before I open my mouth. I wonder if Joshua's figured me out... ..Gotta cool down. I feel like I'm stuck in perma-blush mode...
Ha ha... Indeed. I was actually just speaking with Joshua. Congratulations on your promotion to full bracer status.
Hee hee... Thanks.
Is something wrong?
I don't know... Something just seems different about you. What's got you looking so cheerful?
Ha ha... Okay, you've got me. To tell the truth, I've made several major advances in my archaeological research. You might say that it's put me in a good mood.
Hey, that's awesome!
Oh...sorry! The ice cream's going to melt, so I'd better get going!
I'll see you later!
I think she's going to be quite a lot of fun.
It was SUPER crowded there, but I have returned with our valuable loot!
Now we can eat like kings.
Um...so, about earlier...
Yeah, I want to apologize for that. I didn't mean to be so vague. It just wasn't an appropriate time for confessions, you know?
Oh...sure... I didn't really mind so much...
Well, when I gave it some more thought, it seemed kind of silly to try and rush things. We may be full bracers now, but that just means that we have different work to focus on. We might have to really consider our future prospects.
(If we get married, we'll have to think about raising children...)
(Ack! I've gotta stop getting so far ahead of myself!)
Well...it's evening already, so why don't we eat our ice cream on the way back? Everyone's probably waiting for us.
What is it? Did you have something you wanted to discuss about the future?
N-no! What would give you THAT idea?
Come on! Let's get back to the castle!
What's wrong, Estelle? You've been completely on edge for a while now. Something on your mind?
Hey, Schera...? Did you think Joshua was acting weird at dinner?
??? If anyone was acting weird, I'd say it was you. He was as calm as he ever is.
Well, yeah, but...
Ah-ha... I see. I get it.
I had a feeling about it, but I was wondering if you'd ever admit it to yourself.
You're kinda falling for Joshua, aren't you?
...Y-you can tell...?
It's pretty obvious. Sorry, hon. But I'm guessing you haven't told him anything about this.
N-no... Joshua's always picking on me, telling me what a dope I am...
Not that I should be criticizing anyone, I guess.
*sigh* You're so naive. It's a wonder how you've lasted this long. You need to learn to look a little deeper. Big sister is ready to begin your education in love, Estelle!
I'm never asking you for advice again.
I'm just kidding. I'm sorry; I don't mean to tease.
But... You guys set out just when puberty was about to hit. It's only logical that you'd start picking up on feelings for each other...
O-oh... You think so...?
Traveling together just seems like such a petty reason for that kind of thing... I-I guess I've gotten a little more self-aware since we started all this...
Argh! This isn't like me at all!
Ha ha... You're the proverbial flower that refuses to blossom. Every girl feels that way, hon.
I don't want to lecture you, or talk about this with you if you're not ready... ...but if you are, then what say we have ourselves some girl talk, hmm? Would it help if I told your fortune?
Umm... Yeah, okay... I promise I'll listen to whatever you have to say.
All right! Time for your lesson, my protege! Oh, Estelle, big sister is moved to tears!
On second thought...never mind.
But thank you... I do feel a little better. I'm gonna go see Joshua for a little bit.
Oh...?! You're going to tell him?!
Not about that. There really does seem to be something weird going on with him. I want to see what that's about first.
Well, you do seem to know him better than anyone else.
I'm sure that everything will turn out just fine between you two. Maybe you can even just have a nice, calm discussion with him and be open about what's on your mind.
I...I don't think I'm quite THAT ready yet.
Okay, I'll see you later!
Oh, yeah... Dad's still in some meeting, I think. But where's Joshua?
Joshua...? Ah... He's out playing somewhere, then.
The Whereabouts of Light keeps playing as we explore the castle.
It seems Master Cassius is still in conference, no?
Yeah, seems that way. 2nd Lieutenant Lorence and Captain Amalthea are still on the run, after all... Re-organizing the military chain of command will probably take him a good long while...and that's just ONE thing he's gotta deal with.
Pity. I was going to invite him for a drink.
But I'm certain the master will put every effort into catching them. I have complete faith in his abilities. Still...to think that Lorence was going easy on us during the Martial Arts Competition... If he hadn't been...
Yeah, when he fought the second time, it was like someone had flipped a switch...except instead of on-off, it was strong-CRAZYstrong.
I mean, I know he used to be a Jaeger, but are all Jaegers as strong as he is?
Well, he is experienced, at least. And any soldier with his experience is sure to be quite powerful. But his power...is beyond words.
Facing him is like going off to be slaughtered. It's suicide.
Oh yeah, he's never played harmonica for you before, has he? That's Joshua.
I didn't know he could play the harmonica... He's good!
Yeah, he's all right.
I'm too clumsy to play any kind of instrument, myself. He's lucky to have that kind of talent!
(Sheesh... If Tita's clumsy, what does that make me?!)
I feel as if I heard it back when I was a kid...
Really? But, you're originally from Ravennue Village, right?
Heh heh, Agate has a little sister there. Her name's Mischa.
No way! You've got a sister?!
Yeah, I've got a sister! So what?
I ain't brother of the year or anything like that, if that's what you're implying.
I pretty much never go home. But... I guess maybe when I get some time I can drop by for a visit.
After the investigation of the sealed area is complete and I've returned to Zeiss, I'll have to run a full series of experiments on it.
It is weird, I'll give you.
It's like, nobody knows where or how it was made.
Indeed. If we can't determine its true form, we may never learn the meaning of the events that occurred in the sealed area.
My academic instincts are tingling just thinking about how important an artifact this truly is!
Tingling is...generally good. Just don't get so wrapped up in it that you let yourself get kidnapped again, okay?
Of course. I'll take every precaution.
I've even made certain the Gospel itself has been placed in Cassius' care. There is no safer place for it, would you not agree?
Yeah, that's about the best you're gonna get...
He's been practicing, I surmise.
He did play a lot when he was a kid. He played other songs, but this was the one he'd always come back to.
Was it, now...? It's quite a surprise to hear Joshua play such a delicately beautiful yet obscure song. There are few enough Imperials who still remember it, much less Liberlians!
Wait, so it's...an Erebonian song?
Indeed. 'The Whereabouts of Light.'
A very old Erebonian melody. A perennial favorite of the country folk, in fact.
Wow. I had no idea...
Thats everyone, so lets find Joshua.
Yeah... There's that song again. [The Whereabouts of Light.]
I've lost a lot... But this song, and this harmonica, have always been with me. I've been thinking about why I play it.
Maybe it's a habit I should quit.
I think I want to tell you... ...what I was doing before I met you.
This may take a while... Do you mind?
Not at all. I'll listen to whatever you have to say.
There lived a little boy, all by himself.
In the real world he would never be allowed to have such dreams... But all dreams must end at some point. The time was drawing near, when reality could be avoided no longer.
Thank you for being patient with me and listening.
...Umm...ha ha... Was all that...real?
Every syllable. My heart is broken. My hands will always be stained with blood. I failed in the assassination of your father.
I've been betraying you for a long time.
The boy can't be saved from his real purpose. His presence alone seems to bring disaster and misery... He's just...tainted.
But the boy set out on a journey. It was one with which the people he loved could not help him. He would find and stop the foul magician who had created the life he had led.
He hands her his harmonica.
That's the last remnant of my human heart... I won't be needing it any more... But I want you to take it.
It's hardly an adequate way to thank you for the last five years... ...but I can't think of anything better.
You make it sound like nothing that's happened was even real to you!
Your heart is broken? What does that even MEAN?!
Look into my eyes!
They've ALWAYS seen that boy! In good times and bad! No matter how much the boy was hurting...I always saw how hard he'd keep holding on!
My feelings won't just go away when you do!
It's so bitter...
Don't worry... There are no side effects.
Why did you...
My Estelle... You shine like the sun. My time with you was the happiest...and the most painful...I've ever known.
If you stayed with me, you'd find out just how disgusting my true nature is... Sometimes, I think it would have been better if we'd never met...
I'm grateful that you came to see me. I hate that I have to run from a girl who's so important to me, but it's all I can do... But I want you to know that I'll always be thinking of you.
Thank you...for everything.
Watch the Video: Ending/Credits
The ending is mostly just still images with the credits overlaid, so the video isn't strictly necessary. That said, I've mostly chosen screens that don't contain the credits (to better see the images), so if you want the actual credits watch the video. Either way, don't go anywhere, there's more after the credits.
Watch the Video: Second Chapter Teaser.
In this case, I'd recommend the video, since there's a lot of motion and rapidly changing pictures, but as always, I've provided screenshots and the music.
To be Continued...
...in the Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky Second Chapter!