Part 12: FAWN - Oh, Right, The Antidote Part 2
Eventually, this guy will show up and tail you around. Shamino will mention he's following you, although in my case he mentioned we were being 'followed' the instant he walked up to us. I don't really think that counts as "following."
"Steve, I think that man is following us."
"Ah, one of Monitor's female Pikemen. I am Zulith, Chancellor of Fawn. It is mine honor and duty to serve thee."
"Are you following us?"
"I am a busy man, milady. If thy business lies along the route that mine doth, what fault of mine is that? Besides, what hast thou done to warrant thy worries that I might be following thee?"
"Arrogant strangers! I serve the Lady, handling those details which she doth choose to delegate to me. I also exchange various forms of money. If thou dost wish an audience with her, I can examine her schedule."
"So you're Yelinda's lapdog, eh?"
"She is the ruler of Fawn and all its environs. All who honor Beauty honor Yelinda. She is a wise and compassionate leader. Everyone doth love her. Her beauty is only rivaled by that of Kylista. Yelinda is the embodiment of all of Fawn itself. Because Kylista presides over the Oracle, she is the personification of Beauty."
"So you're a fan of Kylista's... giant... Oracle?"
"Many people believe that the Mages of Old Sosaria created the Oracle. I do not believe such. I have stood alone in the temple gazing at it, and I will tell thee that it is a living being trapped there in that statue. Those Mages did not create a magical item! They summoned some beautiful spirit and trapped it there! I often go to the temple when the day hath been difficult. 'Tis directly behind the palace. 'Tis so quiet and peaceful, except before a revelation."
"And then it's a mess?"
"Yes, revelations are quite exciting. A message from the heavens, or at least that poor trapped spirit. Often, 'tis the only thing many people have to give them hope in these troubled times."
"So, is there any chance of us getting an audience with Lady Yelinda? I don't know why we'd want to, but I figure it can't hurt to go for it."
"Lady Yelinda doth receive visitors and petitions every morning. Let us see... She could receive thee some time next week."
"We scarcely have time for that!"
"Perhaps if I intercede for thee, thou mightest be received earlier. I shall see what I can arrange."
"Well, that's great and all. So... how 'bout those storms?"
"Quite disruptive... They have totally depleted our fishing fleet. If only these terrible storms would end! Great Captain Garth doth have plans laid for rebuilding the ships. But 'twould not be safe until these storms subside. Great Captain Joth is in charge of finding the means to sustain the city until this unusual weather clears."
"Since we're... 'headed the same way,' care to tell us about the Great Captains?"
"Of course. What dost thou desire to know?"
"Well, what do they DO?"
"'Tis their honor to oversee the fleets and all trade matters. They are all seamen who have been appointed to their post in recognition of their expertise."
"And what's your opinion on each of them?"
"Voldin doth have a history of service to Fawn. He was unanimously nominated for the council position by his fellow captains. Voldin works in conjunction with the Captain of the Guard to assure Fawn's safety. He is senior on the council. Voldin served Fawn as a member of the city guard in his younger days. Before he became a council member, he was a fishing captain."
"What of Garth?"
"Garth comes from a fine family. He is the youngest member of the council, but wisely tempers his views to those of the senior council members. Garth is also something of a ladies' man, I fear. His family doth own a shipping business. They have been merchant seamen for generations. As his mother's youngest son, he took the council seat when his cousin resigned. His elder brother is now in charge of the family's shipping business."
"Shut up, Iolo. And Joth?"
"Joth was the finest sea captain before he was injured. He favors beginning to rebuild the fleet now, but hath deferred to Voldin's opinion that it would not be safe to do so at this time."
"How does an advisor get injured?"
"Joth's ship ran aground during a storm... When his injuries would not allow him to return to sea, Lady Yelinda most graciously offered him a seat on the council."
"What makes his plan unsafe?"
"Who would cut the wood to build the ships for fear of more goblins? And no sane person would venture into the open with these storms arriving without warning. No, we must wait until this weather clears before we can hope to begin rebuilding our fleet."
"Afraid of more goblin attacks?"
"Everyone knows that goblins breed like flies upon carrion! Even though the tower hath been retaken, it will not be long before they are back! Dost thou know that, without the possibility of escape by ship because of the storms, I had actually feared that the city might be lost? Knowest thou the brave Pikemen that restored our safety? I am sure that Lady Yelinda would like to thank them personally, if possible."
"In fact, we do!"
"Pray tell me their names that I might relay them to her Ladyship at once."
"I and my companions."
"Wow, we got credit for something."
"Somebody had to loot the pancakes."
"Then thou hast companions beyond compare! Lady Yelinda will surely wish to meet thee, a shining example of Beauty!"
Zulith is also the moneychanger here, although his exchange rate is not great. It doesn't really matter because the best and most versatile moneychanger is at the Sleeping Bull, but if you need Filari to buy bags from Alyssand and Delin, you may as well pay the modest fee he asks.
Righto. Now for what we came for. The greenhouse is where Delphynia the herbalist lives. She's also the town healer, though like Harnna she's not an expert by any means. She sells reagents, being one of only two NPCs in the main game who does so, and her prices are pretty good (they may not look great, but remember she charges in Filari, which is the least valuable currency). We also need varo leaves to cure the Avatar, and Ruggs has given us a letter.
"I am Delphynia, horticulturist and healer. How may I be of service, milady?"
"Oh thank God. I need someone to freaking heal me already."
"I am a horticulturist by trade. What little I know of herbs hath given me a responsibility I did not want. I curse the day that Seth refused a guard escort to do his herb gathering!"
"Seth was two years older than the heavens, and set in his ways, to be sure. But he was a fine healer. He refused a guard escort to gather his herbs. He told Jorvin it was because the guards stepped on the plants he wanted to gather. But I think he simply wanted to be able to escape alone for a while. Thou hast no idea how little time one has when thou must be at the beck and call of everyone with some imagined ill!"
"It was Jorvin who tried to find Seth, then?"
"'Twas he that went looking for Seth near twilight when the old man had not returned to the city. Jorvin found signs that the Goblins had taken Seth, and led pursuit. But it was too late. By the time the guards caught the foul monsters, Seth was already the makings for their next meal! Would that I never hear of those horrible creatures again! They are why I am now Fawn's healer, though I am not properly trained. Pomdirgun's shadow hath cast a blight on all the land!"
"Iiieeee! That very name sends ice down my spine! Pomdirgun hath welded all the Goblins into his weapon. He will never stop until he hath driven us all from the land... Or feasted on us to the last child. He is a fiend drawn to destroy our Beauty!"
"At least you know what happened to him."
"What foulness is about in the land! That I received one of the harbingers of Fawn's doom stains my Beauty! Even the heavens lash out to burn away the vile truth that I harbor within mine heart! When those sailors -- those false prophets -- first landed on our shores, two of their number came to seek me. One was a mage of some sort who came seeking what reagents I grow. The other... He was a thief who wore a face none could love. He stole mine heart away!"
"You met with a mage?"
"I think his companion called him by the name Batlin. He was disappointed in what little I had to offer in the way of reagents. I told him to seek out Pothos in Moonshade for a better selection. He also inquired about blackrock carvings or sculpture, I do not remember exactly. I told him to ask Delin, who doth know artisans in Monitor and Moonshade."
"And who is this Delin? I don't believe we've met him."
"Delin is Fawn's dry goods dealer, poor man. I wished Batlin luck in discussing anything with him. Delin hath not been right since his wife died in childbirth. His daughter, Alyssand, hath always looked after him, though she hath problems of her own now."
"And the other was... a thief?"
"Thief, yes, that's what he is! His name is Ruggs, and he hath bewitched me. Perhaps he is some sort of mage, like his companion. He hath stolen mine heart and I do not know what to do. I must confess, I am the cause of these storms. I know I am. I must live with the vile truth that I hold in mine heart of hearts. I am in love with one of those who brought this ruin upon my city! Although I did not embrace his beliefs, mine heart embraced him. I am as guilty as Alyssand! I cannot see how she bears such shame..."
"Funny enough, he asked us to give you this."
"A letter from Ruggs? Oh, I must see it!"
Dearest Delphynia, The enchanted afternoon when I first saw thy precious face, thou wert in the full bloom of thy beauty and I was blinded. I forgot everything, everyone. I forgot all about Batlin standing next to me and the reagents we were supposed to purchase. That day I fell in love with thee, my Delphynia. But I fear thou wert blinded by my physical appearance as well. Alas! The scars that twist my face are not a pretty sight. Look beyond mine appearance, Delphynia. Let thy mind's eye see my soul. Thy mind is less deceitful than thine eyes which only glance at the surface of things and people. If thou wilt but look, thou wouldst see the hidden treasures of thy scarred Ruggs. For I am a good man. My heart is pure and so is my mind, Delphynia. I beg of thee, look at me. 'Til I see thee again,~~Ruggs.
"Awww, that's adorably pathetic."
"I am adrift! I am torn to my very soul and I know not what to do. Thou must help me. Ruggs hath told me often of his love for me. In truth 'twould be a lie if I were to say that I did not care for him. But he is so... deformed... so ugly, that I know not what to think. All I have been taught tells me that Ruggs' features are the outward sign of the evil within. Yet I can find no trace of it... If that is wrong, what else might also be false? I am shaken to my very core, but I cannot deny mine heart. Wilt thou carry a letter back to Ruggs for me?"
"Sure, why not."
"There is no one else that I can trust such a secret to. If there be a way, some day I will go to him."
"And since we're doing this for you, you can spare some varo leaves too, right? Because I'm kind of dying here."
"Harnna would not have sent thee if thou didst not have great need of the Varo leaves. I would help thee if I could. But my skills as a healer are limited. Take these leaves back to Harnna quickly, before thou dost worsen. Thou canst only be permanently cured of thine infection by a special ointment made from Varo leaves. I do not know how to make the ointment myself, however. Harnna is a true healer and will be able to help thee."
Delphynia's reply is likewise sappy.
"Awww, I hope those two have a happy ending."
"You should know better than to hope for things, Iolo."
Okay, let's go robbin'. A key in Zulith's house (at least I think it's his house)...
...opens a way into the palace. But since Yelinda isn't here, there's not much point in looking.
Kylista's bedroom has the magic armor we
On the way out, we'll stop and take advantage of Fawn's hospitality. Although by the time we're finished killing goblins, we'll have more food than we can possibly ever eat, especially given something that happens later.
Fawn's interesting, but we'll have to come back to get that audience another day. The goblins are restless and I'd like to tie up Monitor before going on to Fawn. Of course once we've done that, Fawn won't take too much longer (it has only one major quest, but it's a doozy) and then we head to Moonshade, my favorite part of the game.