Part 65: Governor Boris and the Wrath of TunonGovernor Boris and the Wrath of Tunon
Last time on Tyranny, we helped Nerat make Ashe look like an idiot and claimed a Spire for ourselves. Today we're going to ask Tunon some questions.
Barik puts in the request for Tunon to let him out of the armor, and we oblige.
Lantry would like to warn us about our wonderful legions.
We've seen most of the companion chatter before, Lantry warns us that Tunon wants us to get to the bottom of the dispute but we have an Archon to report to.
Tunon is once again unhappy at the failure of the armies to take the citadel.
I foolishly forget to check in with the Chorus delegation for the Blood Magic sigil. I'll do it next time I visit Tunon.
: Silence! The contradictions in your statements will be examined, and falsities threshed from truthes. If we find you have perjured yourselves, Bleden Mark will see to your fate. The Archon turns, and you feel his gaze upon you.
: The Archons could not agree on who should lead the siege and descended into accusations of treachery - it seemed a mutual spat.
More lies, considering the offscreen defection rate.
: The Fatebinder presents testimony. I warn you both against speaking out of turn.
: Something more than a mere disagreement unraveled this campaign, but I will return to that in time.
I'm not sure why the bottom option is a lie, because we were the guys who opened the gates and fought the rebel commanders while the Chorus fought...the Disfavored. Oh well!
: I joined with the Scarlet Chorus, we took the Citadel with an unstoppable advance.
Remember, Tunon is the only guy who takes Kyros' stated goals as good things. When Kyros says she wants the citadel conquered, that's the official goal even though we all know the actual goal was for Ashe and Nerat to fuck up and get killed.
: Petty squabbles clouded Graven Ashe's judgment. He was too mired in assaulting the Voices to conquer the Citadel properly.
The second option isn't really true as we all know by now.
: For a long while, the Adjudicator hovers in silence, shadows trailing from below his robes.
Unfortunately, because I didn't meet the conditions to get Nerat to pounce and force Ashe to confess his treason, we can't give Tunon the lowdown on that. It's ok, we're gonna have plenty of evidence against these guys by the end of the game.
: I have told you all that I know.
: Your testimony is accepted by the Court. The statements of our guests raise questions in my mind. There is much about this campaign that has caused me to wonder...
Keep this line in mind going forward. I said earlier that Tunon was deluded and believed wholeheartedly in Kyros, but somewhere in the back of his mind he realizes that things are going to shit. It's part of why we got a trial at all on the Anarchy path, and we're going to see a bit more of that today.
Tunon poofs away.
You want to agree with Tunon or he gets pissy at you for being silent.
: I agree, Your Honor.
We sure as hell know they're not innocent.
: Could they both be guilty?
You can collect enough evidence to convict both Archons, but not on the same playthrough.
: It's possible, but the momentum of the conquest up to this point suggests otherwise. The failure at Vendrien's Well implies a coordinated will behind the chaos.
And we're back to Blind Tunon. The offensives fell apart in year three and only Kyros' personal intervention with three Edicts to conquer this backwards province prevented the failure of the conquest.
: They say the Voices of Nerat holds you in higher regard than most. Use this alliance to enter his confidence. It seems unlikely the Archon of Secrets is more honest with friends than with rivals - but to his friends, he has been known to divulge much.
So, yes, we've been given permission to fight and kill the Disfavored.
: I shall speak with the Archon of Secrets.
: Your fellow Fatebinders have been busy acting as my eyes and earts. I have a few leads for you to follow. You should of course speak with your brothers and sisters of the Court if you need further counsel.
: Though the Disfavored were triumphant in the Blade Grave, I understand that their troubles within the region are unfinished. Talk to the Disfavored commanders serving in the Blade Grave - perhaps they can shine some light on the origins of this feud.
: What concerns the Court, Your Honor?
: In spite of the many shortcomings at Vendrien's Well, you managed to make a name for yourself. You proclaimed an Edict of Kyros, resolved its demanding conditions, and ascended the Mountain Spire.
: I was only doing my job, Your Honor.
: Your sense of obligation to your role is admirable, but modesty will not recommend you to the task ahead.
: Whether by design or by accident, you have captured the attention of Kyros' army and the local Tiersmen alike. This is no small opportunity, and the Court charges you with exploiting your new standing to its fullest potential.
: You have a title in our hierarchy. However, it's a little known secret that one's standing in the world is determined by their infamy, their deeds, and how they come to be known.
: Mind this notion as you bring justice to this lawless frontier. There may come a time when your deeds speak louder for you than any title.
He's foreshadowing the trial, I love it.
: Understood. I will be known as a champion of justice.
TheGreatEvilKing summary posted:
: You're supposed to be officers of Kyros army, but all I'm hearing is a bunch of bullshit designed to disguise being a fuckup.
: We're not fuckups! They fucked up!
: Shut up. Fatebinder, give me the lowdown.
: The Archons couldn't decide who would lead, so they started bitching and whining at each other.
: We're not fuckups! They fucked up!
: Shut up. Fatebinder, sounds like you helped in the assault?
: Chorus and I rolled in crushin rebels and chewing bubblegum.
: Nice! Why the Chorus?
: Ashe went fucking nuts and attacked the Voices.
: This is a complete disaster! Someone stole our iron, and you should check Lethian's Crossing. Anyway, Fatebinder, come to the back, we need to have a chat.
: What a mess. It should not have taken us this long to put down the rebels, and there's a civil war crapping all over Kyros' Peace.
: Yup that sucks.
: Also I want you to figure out which of Graven Ashe or the Voices of Nerat is sabotaging this campaign and present me the evidence.
: Are we sure it's not...both?
: It could be, but this offensive used to work! Anyway, I'm giving you a lot of freedom to investigate, but there might be a big trial at the end of the game. Just sayin'. Also, look out for lying NPCs, and check all the Act 2 locations for clues!
: While I'm at it, I'm going to echo one of the game's themes - that perception equals power - and ask you to keep that in mind while cynically abusing your new reputation to legitimize Kyros' rule. Have fun!
The game is going to keep track of all evidence we've found, and this even includes acts during Conquest! Here Nerat gets a point against him because Sirin enthralled a Disfavored.
Anyway, remember last time when I said not to ask Tunon about Kyros or the mask if you wanted to not piss him off forever?
: Tell me about Kyros.
: How old is Kyros?
Oh, personality cult gibberish, cool. Remember when Calio was bitching about the superstitions of the Tiers?
: What is your relationship to Kyros?
: She is my master, and I her dutiful pupil. In this respect, you and I are no different.
: I have the honor of Kyros' confidence. She trusts me to enact her law upon the boundless territory of her rule. I am only too grateful to serve.
: Do you think Kyros' laws are fair?
Now, this is obviously a land mine, but I will step in it so you do not have to.
And here we see the cracks in Tunon's belief. The easy answer to the question is "well, obviously, Kyros is perfect and would make perfect laws", but Tunon doesn't bother to engage with the question at all. He's not a stupid man and he's a lawyer, so I can't conceive of him being unable to defend it.
Of course, it's also a personal attack as Tunon has poured his heart, soul, and humanity into these laws.
: I couldn't help but notice that you refer to Kyros as a woman.
Even the Abrahamic God is gendered, and if you look closely you can see Kyros trying to appropriate these attributes for herself. Of course, Kyros is...just a woman, so it all blows up in her face at the end of the game.
Catechisms of the Catholic Church posted:
By calling God "Father", the language of faith indicates two main things: that God is the first origin of everything and transcendent authority; and that he is at the same time goodness and loving care for all his children. God's parental tenderness can also be expressed by the image of motherhood, which emphasizes God's immanence, the intimacy between Creator and creature. The language of faith thus draws on the human experience of parents, who are in a way the first representatives of God for man. But this experience also tells us that human parents are fallible and can disfigure the face of fatherhood and motherhood. We ought therefore to recall that God transcends the human distinction between the sexes. He is neither man nor woman: he is God. He also transcends human fatherhood and motherhood, although he is their origin and standard: no one is father as God is Father.
: Let me ask you about something else.
: I'm curious about you, Archon.
: Curiosity is not a trait I encourage in my servants. Too often have I witnessed such activity leading down a path to lawlessness.
: What's the deal with your mask?
Tunon's not much of a poker player, but we'll get to this later.
: Go on.
: In my early days, before the Northern Empire spread to my lands, I fashioned the Mask of Listening out of stern, uncaring wood. This expression of enduring patience harkens the testimony of my petitioners, taking in all evidence before weighing matters in their due course.
: Later in my career, Kyros herself gifted me the Mask of Resolve. You will find it almost identical to the Mask of Listening, save for the brow furrowed in contemplation and weight down by the burden of judgment. This is the face that dispenses law, often the most exacting and unforgiving sort.
: [Lore 63]: Does the Mask of Resolve grant you the power of judgment?
: But no. The Mask is a symbol. Justice itself grants me power. An objective ruling is its own consent to enact incredible wonders.
: Such is my right as the Archon of Law. When I recognize a jurisprudent need, there is nothing I cannot do.
: What do you look like underneath the Masks?
This is really gonna piss him off.
: Your Honor?
: Your Honor?
: Yes, but what do you look like? Do you even remember?
Idk, I saw that fanart on the Tyranny store page and boy are people thirsty for Big T here.
: That doesn't answer my question.
This is the easiest way in the game to piss off Tunon.
He's not happy with us, as you can see when we go back. Cleo, who was good about staying in Tunon's good graces, was treated with respect until the day of the trial. Here we have an extremely angry Archon.
: I wish to apologize for my line of questioning earlier, Your Honor.
: You surprised me with your impudent presumption. Certainly you challenged the court's opinion of you. And yet I will not hold you in my permanent contempt.
It's interesting that Tunon acknowledges that the laws apply to him even when he points out that we have some terrible target choices. Then we go on and ask about Barik only to get shot down again and ask the Forge-Bound to look at him.
TheGreatEvilKing summary posted:
: Can you give me the lowdown about Kyros?
: Kyros is our Overlord, who rules us for our own good, and is literally perfect.
: How old is Kyros?
: Uh...Kyros defies time, and is ageless, so this is an irrelevant question. Next!
: So are you guys a thing or...
: It's more of a master-student relationship. I carry out her laws and she teaches me wisdom.
: Do you think Kyros' laws are fair?
: What the FUCK? You can't do that! Kyros defines everything, including fairness, and if we didn't have these laws we'd have anarchy, like people pooping in the streets or making modern art! Keep in mind how important and immutable Kyros' laws are!
: So you keep referring to Kyros as "she"...Kyros is a woman, right?
: Uh, Kyros is actually the Abrahamic God and defies gender! Duh!
: So...what's with the mask?
: Let me explain this to you. See, faces are really hard to control, and you might show a bunch of bias if you show your face on trial. So, instead of learning to control my face like a poker player or something, I wear this mask, symbolically indicating that I have a fuck ton of biases thinly papered over by artifice. Back in the day, I wore a wooden mask, tying into my pre-Kyrosian nature motif, but then Kyros came along and gave me an iron mask I wear in combat to blow up lots of people.
: So does the mask give you cool powers?
: Well, Kyros certainly could give me more power, but no, the justice stuff is all me!
: So...what do you look like under the mask?
: Uh, Big T, you ok?
: This is a completely irrelevant question, as justice is universal and completely devoid of opinion other than what's right or wrong. Who I am or which of my many biases I'm poorly hiding is completely irrelevant.
: But, uh, what do you look like? What kind of man are you?
: I am the mask. The mask is me. Stop asking.
: That doesn't seem true.
: BITCH GET THE FUCK OUT!!!!!
: I'd like to apologize, your honor.
: I want to say that I'm very angry, and while you had the legal right to do that that was not a good idea.
It's a rather different facet of Tunon's character. He's still a true believer in the Kyrosian project and is dedicated to deluding himself that Kyros is the ultimate righteous authority that cannot be questioned, but when challenged he doesn't really have a good defense other than special pleading that Kyros is perfect and infallible. He can't defend it because it's impossible to defend and some part of him realizes this, and it gets played out later in the trial at the end of the game.
Tunon desperately tries to reconcile Kyros with reality posted:
It's a common problem to most political ideologies when they come into contact with reality and lose, the true believers will always find some way to rationalize it. A lot of people criticize the ending of Tyranny as a power fantasy where you are the chosen one to defeat Kyros (LordMandalore recently claimed this in one of his videos, as well as the RPG Codex review) and it's just not true. If it wasn't the player character any one of the Fatebinder's in Tunon's court could have found themselves in this situation, and Tunon doesn't make up his mind on the spot at the end of the game after being a content true believer owned by Ben Shapiro, the player just lets Tunon examine his own doubts. Tunon is happy to sentence whichever Archon you convict to death in absentia without giving them an opportunity to defend himself, but you can always get a trial from Tunon.
The masks are another issue. You'll note that Tunon said nothing about correcting these biases, just covering them up with a mask. He's not going out and trying to get other perspectives, merely insisting that he is thoroughly objective and that his justice is the true justice beyond reproach, and, as we see later, those are both vectors he concedes he's wrong on. Take a look at some of the stuff he says in the trial.
Tunon dies posted:
Tunon is bad at hiding his biases posted:
It's clear that confronting the player is just bringing these doubts he expresses now to the fore. The Fatebinder does not create these doubts, they only exacerbate them to win the trial, but ultimately Kyros has put Tunon in the position of having to defend these indefensible laws when they conflict with reality. The Fatebinder is not special, they are just in the right place at the right time to exploit all the flaws in Kyros' empire. If Calio had been sent instead of the player I would bet actual money she'd be collecting Spires and planning an escape too.
Next time: Chatting with Nerat.