Part 11: FAWN - Oh Right, The Antidote Part 1
Oh Right, The Antidote
"It sure is impressive how readable all these signs are."
"Yes, it is extremely nice that, although they are written in a strange runic alphabet, to us they are plainly readable."
"Yeah, I mean, who would insist upon subjecting themselves to that crazy alphabet unless one were so proficient in its use already that reading it appears as effortless as it does to us, the characters in this game?"
"Truly our ability to read things we're familiar with sets us above farm animals and children."
"Hey, I'm pretty sure these guys aren't Pikemen!"
"Maybe they're subcontracting to goblins."
"I think someone would notice a goblin posing as a Pikeman."
"Yes well they're throwing shit at us so I suspect that whole point is academic."
The goblins that spawn in front of Fawn Tower all have swamp boots, which is pretty neat. The three pairs here and the pair we lost in the storm (which we can get back soonish) make enough to get through the one swamp in this game. Whereupon they become completely useless, since the second half of the storyline takes place almost exclusively in a frigid wasteland.
Basically what you do is kill all the goblins in and around Fawn Tower (it's not really any harder than killing them anywhere else) and go downstairs, then go back up.
Also pictured: Shamino noticing the Avatar is poisoned for about the 20th time since Lydia tattooed her. I should probably get that fixed.
The pikemen will then respawn, although so too will one more wave of goblins (see them?).
"Given the competency Pikemen have shown up to this point, I'm just going to chalk this one up to business as usual."
Finally, a new city! Full of people who aren't all dykes and bearded meaty wonders. Naturally, the first thing we'll do here is get accosted by a guard.
"Stand and be recognized, stranger! There hath been trouble of late here in Fawn..."
"...And here comes part of it now."
"Oh, please, milady, a favor! My name is Ruggs. I am a poor sailor whose visage offends the good people of Fawn, and I have been forbidden entry into the city. I have not heard from the lady I love since mine exile, and I can find no one willing to carry her word of my continuing devotion. Please, milady, I beg of thee, wouldst thou take this letter to her for me?"
"Why should I?"
"I have searched all my life for a woman who would overlook my deformity and learn to love me. Somehow I will find a way to tell Delphynia of my love... I am certain that thy business is far more urgent."
"How can thine heart be so hard, Avatar? Thou wouldst search every corner of the land and sea to help me find Gwenno. Wilt thou reconsider and aid this poor soul's search for love?"
"Okay, first of all, no I wouldn't. And second-"
"I am sure that thou hast thy reasons, Avatar. But I am sorely disappointed."
"Oh don't take that tone with me, Iolo. You know I'm-"
"The Avatar! Forgive me... unlike these local folk, I know whom thou art!"
"Goddamnit. I wasn't counting on anyone actually knowing me."
"Oh, no... Why is it that everyone expects the Avatar to help with their love life?"
"Have a drink or two... Thou wilt soon forget her."
"Thou wouldst not be so hard, Shamino, if thou hadst lost thy love!"
"All of you just shut up. Okay, fine, yes, we're going to see the person you're looking for anyway. To be honest I really have no reason not to help you, which makes this a fairly easy moral decision unless I just feel like being a dick."
"But he hasn't even told you her-"
"Oh, I knew by the nobility of thy face that thou wouldst take pity on a wretch such as myself! Take this to Delphynia, the herbalist. Thou mayest find her at the greenhouse. If thou shouldst bring a return message, I will introduce thee to my shipmate, Scots, who makes maps. Perhaps his cartography would be of aid to thee."
"If we follow your face, I wonder if we'd find treasure."
"Actually... well, I'd best be going."
"Be careful of that one. He is nothing but trouble. Thou must state thy name and business, before thou canst pass, milady."
"Steve, and the others aren't important."
"Pleased to meet thee, Steve. What is thy business here in Fawn?"
"Oh, just visiting. I'm hoping the sea air will cure this debilitating recurrent poison."
"Welcome to Fawn, then! Keep away from trouble whilst thou art here. We have enough to worry about, what with storms, goblins, and Fellowship troublemakers."
"I imagine the storms are worse out on the water like this."
"They start without warning, so do not stray too far from shelter. Be warned, we have orders to close the gate during a storm. So if thou art caught outside of the gate, thine only choice is the traveller's shelter. If those foul goblin savages would dare attack the Pikemen, we cannot leave the gates open at night. Fawn's gates are now closed at night. They cannot be opened for anyone until morning. So have a care if thou dost venture outside near dark."
"And the Fellowship? They've even made it here?"
"I should not have said that. Be assured that the Captain is quick with the Wand of Detainment."
"The what now?"
"The Wand of Detainment is a fine gift from the people of Moonshade. With the Wand, the Captain can capture any criminal. Keep that in mind if thou shouldst feel mischievous..."
"I'll try real hard not to get caught doing anything suspicious."
And in we go! Fawn is definitely an aesthetically different place, not just from Monitor, but from any previous Ultima location. A glistening white city full of gardens, Fawn is built over the water. It's cool, but unfortunately largely unfinished. Although it's not the least polished town architecturally (that would be Moonshade, though you might not realize it from looking), it's somewhat lifeless. There are a small number of NPCs in the city, they don't say much of interest, and there is only one single major quest in town. It's a fun one, to be sure, but once you're done getting the object that represents Love, you're done here for pretty much the rest of the game. Granted, we should be completely finished with both Monitor and Fawn by next week, but still, it's not as involved as the quests in Monitor and especially not as intricate as Moonshade.
"I hope I don't get hit by lightning again."
"Yes, it wouldn't do to have us all separated a second time."
"I said I hope I don't get hit."
"Avatar, look! A lute!"
It's hard to get a shot of this because Iolo scoops up the lute as soon as it appears at his feet. There's an oddity here in-game because the lute he picks up is Iolo's Lute, rather than a regular one, and Iolo's Lute already exists in-game. So you get a duplicate of it, for a grand total of I think three if you also ditch the lute Iolo starts with and pick it up on the beach later. There's a fan patch that fixes this, although to be quite honest it seems like an incredibly tiny thing to bother with.
"The storm has faded!"
Suddenly, a bunch of Fawn's citizens enter the square.
"Yes, I am, though as of late I do not feel the music within me."
"I beg of thee, canst thou indulge me for but one song? The sinister thunder doth linger in mine ears. A few strums from thy strings may bring comfort to this sorrowful town..."
"I am truly sorry, but I do not think that I can help thee..."
"Believe me, getting him started is the last thing you want to-"
"Sing of Beauty!"
"Just a small-town girl, livin' in a lonely world! She took the midnight train goin' anywhere."
"What's a train?"
"Who cares, I love this song!"
"...payin' anything to roll the dice just one more time."
"Some will win, some will lose!"
"Some are born to sing the blues!"
"DON'T STOP. BELIEVING."
"Hold on to that feeeeeeling!"
"I've never seen anyone play an electric guitar solo on a lute before."
"When did you get here?"
"I been around."
"Streetlight... people... Thank you! Thank you. You're all great. You know I love it here in Fawn. This next song is from the Man in Black..."
And Then Later Than That...
"...a fast machine, she kept her motor clean, she was the best damn woman I had ever seen..."
"...this will be my testimony, yeah..."
You're Probably Aware By Now...
"I'm no schoolboy but I know what I like..."
"Thank you, thank you. That was the entirety of 2112, by Rush. Love that album."
"Moving Pictures is way better."
"You're just saying that. I bet you've never even heard of any other Rush album."
"A Farewell To Kings."
"Don't help him!"
"Okay uh yeah I told you guys not to do this but um just so you're all clear we just spent 16 hours listening to Iolo. You give me that lute, you're not allowed to touch it anymore."
After the performance, a few of the NPCs won't leave us alone unless we talk to them or something. Fawn is kind of poorly scripted and this really shouldn't have happened, but I'll be damned if I know how Fawn's scripting actually works. So let's chat with them so they resume their schedule and don't break or follow us into the wilderness and get lost.
"You okay, buddy?"
"Such an honor... Finely done, brave Monitorian! We had despaired when those vile goblins seized the tower. I am Jorvin, Captain of the guard. How may I be of service?"
"See? Subcontractors, Iolo? Come on, that's just dumb."
"When the goblins took the tower, we feared that Fawn would be crushed without the Pikemen. 'Twas a horrible thought -- trapped between the storms and the goblins with no escape. 'Twas certainly the bravest of Monitorians that led the assault to retake the tower. Wert thou there?"
"You know it."
"How remarkable! Thou art surely as beautiful as Lady Yelinda, and as brave as any Pikeman. Pray, forgive mine astonishment. In Fawn, all females -- especially the beautiful ones -- are forbidden to endanger themselves. We could not bear to see Beauty such as thine marred in any way."
"Are you... are you hitting on me?"
"By the mark that thou dost wear on thy face, I judged thee as a Monitorian. Perhaps I am mistaken. Art thou from Monitor, milady?"
"Then thou must be brave indeed! Monitor hath never before welcomed outsiders into the ranks of the Pikemen. I am honored to meet thee. I am certain that Lady Yelinda will wish to receive thee formally once she knows that thou art in the city. I will see that thou art properly escorted when she doth wish to see thee."
"You have a surprisingly favorable opinion of Pikemen."
"They are the finest warriors in the land. Though some may grumble at the tribute they ask, I think it is a small price to pay. Their bravery hath been the only thing that hath kept the goblins at bay all these years."
"Whoa, we're supposed to get paid for that?"
"The Fawn tower Pikemen levy a toll for every person that travels along this length of road. The Pikemen must not only protect the travellers, but also insure the upkeep of the tower and this portion of the road. I do not feel that the charge is unwarranted."
"So who's this Yelinda person?"
"Lady Yelinda is the ruler of Fawn, and is the most beautiful of all women within the city. If thou seekest an audience with her, thou must speak with the Chancellor. His name is Zulith. Thou mayest know him by his green robes of state. Thou canst not miss them. Thou canst most often find Zulith either in the palace, acting as Lady Yelinda's envoy to the Great Captains, or in the Temple. He seems to be a fervent follower of Beauty."
"Anybody else worth knowing about?"
"Only the Great Captains. The Great Captains serve as counselors to Lady Yelinda. They deal with most trade matters, and oversee the disposition of the fleets. Thou canst find them near the docks most times. Until the storms began, Fawn's means of livelihood was fishing. Now our economy is all but ruined. The storms have destroyed all of our ships. Our fishermen must fish from the docks. We have only enough fish to feed the city. We have none to trade to the other cities. Only Alyssand still finds a way to bring money into the city."
"I like where this is going."
"Alyssand is the daughter of Delin the shopkeeper. She makes fishnet stockings that she exports to wealthy customers in Moonshade. Ever since her betrothed disappeared, Alyssand hath taken to listening to the babble of The Fellowship followers. I hope she doth not go astray."
"Alyssand's betrothed was a fisherman named Keth. He was without shelter during one of these freak storms. No one hath seen him since. Alyssand took it well enough -- until a storm took away the engagement ring he had specially made for her in Moonshade. I suspect that she always hoped that he would come back. Now that the ring is gone, Alyssand hath had to face the truth that Keth might well be a tree now, for all we know."
"You mean this ring?"
"'Tis the one, in truth! I would recognize it anywhere. Keth showed it to me when he did bring it back from Moonshade. Alyssand will be thrilled, no doubt. Perhaps this will turn her mind from the false path she now follows. Thou mayest ask for her at Delin's shop. He should know where she is."
"It seems you have many issues. With your ships destroyed, it seems Fawn is at the goblins' mercy."
"Indeed, we had despaired of falling to their newfound unity. But we have hope again now that the tower hath been retaken. For these many years the goblins fought more amongst themselves than with us. Raided the towns a time or two, but nothing truly serious. Now they are all following one crafty goblin. Always seems to outwit the soldiers sent to kill him."
"Afraid he might eat your kids?"
"Anyone knows that goblins devour people! Why soon before the storms began, they abducted the healer who was gathering herbs. We took an armed band after them as quickly as possible, but all we found of him was his head... The rest was doubtless in the cookpot or the grinder. Delphynia doth do her best to take his place."
"Oh hey, she's the person I was hoping could keep me from dying - which, incidentally, I am rather close to doing right now."
"She is the town herbalist, actually. She doth spend her time between her greenhouse and the healer's hall. We tried to send word to Moonshade or Monitor for another healer, but no one was willing to come -- what with the storms and all. We expect bad weather, being located on the water as we are. But these storms seem... well... evil somehow. Lightning that causes things to disappear. Not burnt to ashes, mind thee, completely gone. Lightning that takes something and leaves something else in its place. Thou must find shelter quickly when thou dost think a storm is approaching."
"And the Fellowship? We've had some issues with them before as well."
"I see the guards are still spreading that gossip... Before these strange storms started, a ship came into our port bearing no resemblance to any ship we knew. Those aboard her told us that they had voyaged from Old Sosaria. Though our seamen found this hard to believe, we accepted them. Leon began preaching about some strange notion called The Fellowship right before the storms started. Kylista took this as a sign that the heavens were angry with us for allowing this foreign belief into the city. After seeking counsel with the Great Captains, Lady Yelinda regretfully banned the sailors and the passengers from the city."
"Kylista is the Priestess of Beauty. 'Tis her duty to see to the spiritual well-being of the people of Fawn. Her task hath not been easy since the fleet was destroyed. Many people are disillusioned. Our only comfort lies in the revelations of the Oracle. The revelations assure us that the heavens have not totally turned their eyes from Fawn. If thou dost visit the Temple whilst thou art here, I am sure that thou wilt be able to hear for thyself."
"The Oracle is... a person?"
"Hardly! 'Tis quite a marvel. Before the storms began, people came from all around to hear its revelations. 'Twas built by some mage from Moonshade for Lady Fawn. If thou wishest to know more, though, thou shouldst ask Kylista."
"Doesn't seem to be the only thing your city has acquired from Moonshade. What of this Wand of Detainment your men spoke of?"
"'Tis the only thing the guards have performed correctly. We make no secret of the fact that I possess the Wand of Detainment. I find that the knowledge that I can stop even the greatest brute, or the fastest thief, doth do much to deter those who would cause mischief in our city."
This is actually true; the Wand of Detainment can pretty much send you to jail instantly. You can break out, but Fawn's security is remarkably effective considering Monitor just throws hordes of weak Pikemen at you. You can pretty easily avoid it though, because there are few guards in the city, and the NPCs spend almost all of their time in a very small area away from their houses. Stealing from Fawn is almost trivial.
Now for the aforementioned Kylista. We can't meet Yelinda yet; she won't even appear anywhere. Fawn's quest has to be triggered, and it takes a few steps to do it. Bringing Iolo is the first of these, so you have to bust him out of the Monitor prison before you can do much in Fawn.
"Greetings, noble lady!"
"At thy service, milady. One of Monitor's famed Pikemen! I am Kylista, Priestess of Beauty. I have always thought it daring of Monitorian women to wear a tattoo. Tell me, do the Monitorian men find this alluring?"
"I dunno... probably?"
"Most men seem to find me attractive... Except for the Pikemen. I had wondered why. Thank thee for the enlightening information."
"That's good, I guess. How are things in the city, what with the storms and all?"
"The storms! We allowed corruption to enter our city, to visit the very heart of Beauty. Some even encouraged its growth. Now we must pay for our transgressions. Once we have been brought low enough to see only Beauty, the storms will stop and Fawn will once again prosper. But while all traces of untrue beliefs linger, the punishment will remain."
"Those who call themselves Britannians -- the sailors that dwell outside the city gates to the northeast -- are false prophets! We thought them poor, confused seamen worthy of our embrace. But we were fooled! All they brought were lies! The one they call Leon denounced Beauty as a mere shadow of The Fellowship's truth! And then -- then -- did the storms come! To smite those who would utter such blasphemy! The storms will not end until the blight of the blasphemers' existence hath been wiped from Beauty's face!"
"I would say that she feels rather strongly about this, Avatar. But what she is proposing to stop the storms seems a bit extreme."
"What are you talking about? Killing Fellowship members until the problem stops is how we solved our last quest."
"Well, it's true."
"Leon seeks to divert unsuspecting people from Beauty's path. He is the one that hath brought the anger of the heavens down upon us! Lady Yelinda should have ordered him executed for the woes that he hath brought upon our city! I recommended that she have these foreign blasphemers killed -- let their blood wash away the evil they have wrought. But Lady Yelinda is a soft-hearted woman who doth not know the harshness of the heavens' anger. I fear that the Great Captains urged her to leniency in favor of their common ties with the sea."
"The Great Captains being her advisors, right?"
"They ensure that Lady Yelinda is not overtaxed with the tedious daily problems of ruling the city. Joth and Garth allowed themselves to be swayed by feelings of kinship with these foreign sailors. Only Voldin recognized their true danger. Joth is a good man, with a fine sense of what needs to be done to keep the fleets in good order. He is not, I fear, a good advisor when it comes to political matters. In fact, Zulith would be better in that respect."
"Why yes! Zulith is Lady Yelinda's secretary. He schedules her audiences and acts as a messenger between her Ladyship and the Great Captains. His official title is Chancellor, I believe."
"And the other Great Captains?"
"Garth is no more than a boy! He blows with the wind of anything that catches his fancy, most notably young ladies. Garth is of little use in all but representing the interests of the merchant captains. Now Voldin is truly what Fawn needs as an advisor! His record of service on land and sea is impeccable. I fear it takes all his expertise to explain most situations to his companions. Fawn would fare much better if Voldin were Lady Yelinda's only advisor."
"And you think they had leniency on the Fellowship for-"
"Lies! Lies! Simplistic half truths meant to snare the unwitting and twist Beauty's truth! How can any person tell heaven's will without benefit of divine guidance? The deluded fools have not heard the voice of the Oracle or felt the heavens' anger. All things good possess an innate Beauty that attracts all living things. To goblins, who are vile, ugly monsters, Beauty is a lie. To Pomdirgun, Beauty is something to be exterminated, not cherished."
"Everyone keeps coming back to those guys, but they really aren't that difficult to kill."
"The very antithesis of Beauty! Goblins are base savages with no appreciation of Beauty and no grasp of Beauty's truth. Pomdirgun is the epitome of all repulsive things. He hath risen to unite the goblins against all things good and Beautiful. The heavens have tired of our wandering from Beauty's truth. They have sent Pomdirgun to destroy those that fall short of the mark."
"Too bad your Oracle can't fix that by... doing whatever it is that it does."
"Yes, the Oracle. It was commissioned by Lady Fawn, many years ago, as an instrument to speak the heavens' truths. The Mages of Old Sosaria labored for nearly a year before the task was done. The revealed wonder was the Oracle. As Priestess of Beauty, I have the power to call forth a revelation from the Oracle. In times past, before the storms began, people came from all around to hear the Oracle's divine words. The revelations are truths of heaven filtered through a mouth of stone! It is a pity that thou wilt not hear a revelation... I have decided to close the rituals to all outsiders. We cannot be too careful, after what happened with the false prophets."
"Yeah, we've been over that. Look, you're Kylista, right? Did you lose a white breastplate?"
"Thou hast the Armour of Beauty! Oh, what a sign from the heavens! Return it to me... Perhaps the heavens shall once again smile upon Fawn."
"But what about thine own armour, Avatar?"
"Oh, was that strange armour that appeared in my bedchamber thine? I cannot recall what I did with it. Perhaps I still have it... Perhaps thou wilt come by some evening and I will look for it."
"Yeah. Well, since you just told us where the armor is, we no longer have to give you back the breastplate either!"
"Why dost thou not give it to me?"
"Because I need it."
Nearby is Fawn's only real store. The owner isn't in, but his daughter is.
"'Tis always an honor to serve the Pikemen. I am Alyssand, daughter of Delin. I am a weaver by trade. I help father with the shop when he is... indisposed. What dost thou wish to purchase?"
"Nothing, just taking a tour. Nice city."
"Oh yes. Fawn, the city of Beauty. Fawn, the city that lost Love in vanity and the pursuit of power. Beauty nourisheth the senses, milady. But Love nourisheth the soul. The soul of Fawn withered long ago..."
"Whatever do you mean?"
"The people of Fawn are content to let the world end... As long as it doth not mar their Beautiful view of the dying embers! Love and Beauty were once regarded as aspects of the same entity. Whoever loved was beautiful. Whoever nurtured the beauty of truth was loved. Now the two are sundered, and Fawn cares for no one but herself. The storms stripped us of our ships, one by one. Some were plucked away, even as we watched. Others left harbor and never returned. And Beauty is cold comfort to those who have lost their loved ones. Thou hast not seen the storms hit, and watched as something vanished before thy very eyes?"
"Yes, we are aware of the plot."
"And the Goblins have grown bold of late. They have often come to hurl themselves upon our gate. Thankfully, we have held fast so far. Their attacks bring fear in me for Leon and his companions. Lady Yelinda hath forbidden them entrance into the city, even if 'twere certain death to remain outside."
"Yeah, that's too bad. Hey, did you make these stockings?"
"I had not expected a stranger to know of my tiny industry. I weave the nets and sew in my father's shop. It assists me in mine attempts to keep a watchful eye on my father... He hath not been right since my mother, Elissia, died. I have few customers, but perhaps people are beginning to take an interest."
"Well, to be truthful, I have only one returning customer. Flindo, a merchant from Moonshade, hath only just left here after ordering several more pair. Apparently one of the mages hath taken a liking to them. They are the only ones who could afford such luxuries now."
"These look a little different from yours, though."
"My! I knew that such fine work was possible. But I had never actually seen the stockings they sell in Moonshade. It doth cause me to wonder why anyone in the city of Mages would buy the rough stockings I make when they could purchase ones so soft."
"I was also told, uh, this ring belonged to you."
"I had heard that thou hadst been asking after me. That thou didst have an interest in my missing engagement ring... Or perhaps in the gauntlets that replaced it. That is it, indeed. I thank thee for telling me... But thou mayest keep it if thou wishest."
"If thou wouldst wish the honest truth, I do not think that my beloved Keth will ever come back from wherever that storm took him. Therefore, this ring hath only melancholy memories for me. This jewelry hath become bitter to me."
"I've already heard the story, but since I love grinding tragedy into people who are too mouthy, could you go over it again?"
"Keth and I were to marry, but it was not fated to be. He was first mate on one of the largest merchant ships. On one of his voyages, he purchased the engagement ring -- from an artisan in Moonshade, as I recall. But then the storms came, and ships began disappearing. And eventually it was Keth's ship that never came back."
"Well, that's all suitably hilarious, but I'd like my stuff back."
"I assume that the gauntlets are thine... They are clearly meant for someone more adventurous than a mere weaver. Wouldst thou like to have them back?"
"Then thou shalt have them. Here!"
"Well, that was a win-win for us. Where to now, guys?"
"One more moment of thy time, if thou wilt, milady. A person like thyself, brave and adventurous, could be useful in times like these... Wouldst thou be willing to aid us in liberating this city from false traditions and evil schemes?"
"If thou wilt only let me explain the concepts, I am certain that thou wilt join our Cause. According to legend, the Oracle was brought by our ancestors from Sosaria, our homeland. It now stands in the Temple of Beauty. Our traditions teach us that the statue is an infallible guide to Truth and Beauty. But we suspect that the legends are false."
"Most of the young people of the town belong to the Cause -- but they are not willing to say so publicly, for fear of exile. I am also pleased to say that Leon supports us, as do the other Fellowship members. At any rate, the Oracle actually speaks -- all of us have heard it. It speaks in reply to the Priestess of Beauty. The Statue of Beauty only speaks at certain times, such as during the spring festivals or when the city needs special guidance. According to tradition, it will also reply to the ruler of Fawn. However, I have never seen Lady Yelinda speak to the statue. She leaves such duties to Kylista."
"With you so far."
"Impressive, you've made it through several paragraphs of exposition without hitting anyon- OW! Well, I guess it was inevitable."
"The Oracle is supposed to speak only the Truth, yet it too often parrots the words of the Priestess and the Great Captains. We do not believe that truth only serves those in power... we think that someone hath corrupted the Oracle!"
"Like the priestess?"
"Kylista is the worst example of this pernicious doctrine of Beauty... She believes that her attractiveness marks her as superior to all others, and that her sensuality is a divine gift by which to influence men's minds. Kylista is lustful and greedy, but she is also cunning. She is very dangerous to us."
"But what makes you think the Great Captains are also involved?"
"According to all of our traditions, only women are capable of ruling in Fawn -- for only women are capable of True Beauty. The highest station which a male can hope for is to serve as one of the Great Captains. These men serve as Lady Yelinda's advisors. Yet they do much more than merely advise. There are three of them -- Garth, Joth and Voldin."
"I heard a bit about them, but if you know anything more it might help me decide."
"Because he is the youngest of the Captains, we had hoped to find a way to persuade Garth to support our Cause. When one of us spoke with him, he claimed to be sympathetic to the Cause. Yet Garth says he is afraid to confront Voldin with our suspicions. I do not trust him... The sailors trust and respect Joth. In mine heart, I cannot believe he is part of any conspiracy to control the Oracle. We thought of asking Joth to aid us, but he hath not been the same since the storms. He doth live in his memories and stare out to sea. I think he cannot stop yearning to return to sea long enough to be of much help."
"Which leaves Voldin."
"Voldin is the one who truly controls the Great Captains. I think he would make himself ruler of Fawn, if he could find a way. Voldin is a cruel man who secretly despises women. If there is an evil scheme, then Voldin must be the mastermind."
"Uh, okay. We'll ask around. Maybe we'll go check on Leon or something."
"Thou hast not heard Leon speak? Oh, thou shouldst! He doth tell of something wonderful, wherein all people are equal and capable of independent thought. Something called The Fellowship. Thou canst find him at the camp outside the city gates."
"I had thought we had rid ourselves of that blight."
"But it seems that it is following in Batlin's footsteps."
"Imagine, Avatar! Imagine what the world would be like if only we trusted one another, worked together, and sought to earn that which we strived for! Imagine if women were not coddled or thought of as inferior! What would the world be like if we all listened to our Inner Voice?"
"The world would be full of frustrated fools, I am sure."
"Another one who hath fallen prey to the empty promises of The Fellowship, Avatar."
"What are you guys talking about? All those things she mentioned aren't necessarily bad. Except the inner voice thing."
"Well that's just uncalled for."
"Leon's companions are the sailors that brought him here. Their names are Scots, Ruggs and Kalen. Scots is not precisely a sailor, I suppose. He is actually a cartographer. He is most often with his pens and ink, drawing intricate little lines... I surmise all those lines make a map, I do not know. But I do not know how he could be making a map, either. He cannot go anywhere because of the storms. Ruggs is a sailor, for sure. Although he seems to take well to gardening now that he's on shore. Thou canst not mistake which of the three is Ruggs. His face is hideous to behold, though he speaks fair enough. Of the three of Leon's companions, I know the least about Kalen, and I have no desire to learn more. He always seems to be hovering about, staring at me. He never seems to be doing anything around the camp."
"I notice in all your discussions you're not talking about the ruler of the city much."
"She, too, is a prisoner of Beauty! Yelinda must not strain herself, lest she mar her perfect appearance with any sign of weariness. The Great Captains therefore have usurped many of her duties, on the pretext of sparing Yelinda from tedium. I do not think the Lady to be the mindless, spineless creature which some others do. I think she is a victim of this system."
"Well, that sucks."
"Now that I have explained it, thy duty must be evident. Wilt thou join us in this Cause?"
"Well, I mean I guess, kind of, maybe?"
"Thy courage doth delight the soul of a weary rebel like myself. We once tried to enter the Temple during the night, while Kylista was with one of her lovers... but the guards foiled our attempt. Nevertheless -- look everywhere, talk to everyone, see if thou canst find the clue that hath eluded us!"
Down in the basement is the provisioners' stuff, mostly locked up, although you'll notice various secret doors and levers. However, don't expect anything amazing down here; Delin and Alyssand are weavers and provisioners, not armorsmiths.