Part 19: FAWN - A Trial Of A Century
A Trial Of A Century
"I seriously hope you guys did something yesterday."
"I'm sure something will come to me."
"Where is the Priestess of Beauty? And where is Great Captain Voldin?"
"Um... I am not sure, thy Ladyship. Nor is Jorvin to be found."
"What did you do?"
"Compared to what I'm about to do? Nothing really."
"It is most improper that neither Voldin nor Kylista are here... But I shall not have justice detained. I shall continue in Kylista's place..."
"All hail the Lady Yelinda, who hath condescended to conduct this portion of the trial in person."
"Excuse me, Great Lady, but I must address a point of order. Since The Fellowship troublemakers were so disagreeable in our earlier meeting, they have been excluded from this session of the trial."
"I'm sure I'll think of something else."
"You didn't prepare at all, did you?"
"I skimmed it."
"Iolo's representative, Steve the Avatar, shall now present the facts to defend her friend."
"I call Delphynia to witness before the Oracle."
"Hail to Beauty, and the omnipotence of the Oracle! I shall answer thy questions truthfully, Avatar. Of what can I tell thee?"
"Could you testify as to the character of the accused?"
"He did strike me as a kindly man, of affable temperament. Good with children. Not the kind to consort with Daemons."
"Interesting. You believe in daemons?"
"I do believe in Daemons. There is much evil in this world, and I do not believe that we cause it of ourselves. Our ancestors did beat the British by escaping to this land. Is it so incredible that the Daemon would want revenge?"
"Heh, 'beat the British.'"
"I know what you're thinking and I did not want a mental image like that."
Delphynia is usually a poor character witness, as she isn't particularly fond of Dupre. But she actually likes Iolo. There are minor differences like this in the "character of the accused" lines depending on who is on trial.
"No further questions. I call Joth to witness before the Oracle."
"I am prepared for thy questions, Avatar. What dost thou care to question me about?"
"What was your opinion of Iolo?"
"To be honest, he did not strike me as an honest man. Never cared much for bards. Louts, every one of them!"
"Yeah, that pretty much pegs him."
"Yeah yeah, don't worry about it. I call Delin to witness before the Oracle."
"I'm sure this will be useful."
"Oh... I'm not used to standing in public like this... crowds make me nervous... Let this be swift. Ask thy questions."
"Could you tell us about the defendant?"
"He looks to be too old for my daughter, now that I see him clearly. When a man ages, he starts to lose his mind. Wouldn't want mine Alyssand to have to deal with someone like that..."
"Yet he has helped you in the past, has he not?"
"That is what Alyssand said in her testimony -- that thy friend did return her engagement ring to her. Mighty nice of him, I say. He looks to be a good lad. Doth he need a wife?"
"Nah, he's got plenty."
"I know that the Priestess fears that the ring was stolen by magical means. But what about the storms! They steal things every day. Could not a storm have taken my daughter's ring?"
Surprisingly, Delin is actually kind of helpful. Even though none of this matters .
"I call Garth to witness before the Oracle. Captain, what can you tell us?"
"I have met him face to face, and I find Dupre to be the most surly, disrespectful man I have ever seen. He offends with every breath that comes out of his ugly face!"
"Captain, thou art confused. It is Iolo on trial, not Dupre."
"Why, thou art right, sailor. Nevertheless, I stand by my sworn testimony!"
"I may be drunk, but I'm not stupid..."
"No further questions."
"This is going only slightly better than I expected, and I wasn't expecting much."
"I call Jendon to witness before the Oracle."
"Why hast thou brought me before the Oracle, Avatar? Ask me thy questions."
"I just thought I'd ask your opinion. Of Iolo. Let's try to keep that one clear."
"A prince of a man! Why, when he breaks into song, I can hardly keep the crowds out of mine inn!"
"Such a man hardly sounds like the servant of Daemons, innkeeper."
"Aye. But then again, doth legend not claim that Daemons have silver tongues? This Iolo doth certainly have charm..."
"Honestly though. Daemons? HIM?"
"Do I believe in Daemonism? Of course. My mother told me the legends when I was a mere child. And even if I didn't -- why, I'm an innkeeper, Avatar. For the sake of my business, friend, I dare not disagree with the Priestess of Beauty."
"An interesting admission. You mentioned we had brought you strange objects to look at."
"That is what I said in my testimony."
"But thou art an innkeeper! Surely, many folks bring thee mysteries..."
"Mayhaps, stranger. But nothing half so strange... Thou did ask me about the ancient ruins, indeed. Very suspicious."
"Surely, others ask of these same things?"
"Indeed, the sage Batlin was also curious about the ruins."
"See how the evidence convicts him! I tell thee, this Dupre works for Batlin, and both are tools of Beast British!"
"Sir, I'll address this when I present my case."
"Wait, present your case? What are you doing now?"
"Go on, Jendon."
"We did speak of the northern barbarians, Iolo and I. He seemed to relish the most grisly parts of the tale."
"Ah, but thou dost tell that tale to everyone, Jendon. Thou canst not convict a man for listening to thy tales..."
"Can you tell us about the defendant's wife?"
"Yes, I did meet the scholar when she was here. A fine lady, of good temperament. I find it hard to believe that Iolo could be guilty of Daemonism, yet be wed to such a wonderful lady."
"Is that all? I must remind you that you should never lie before the Oracle."
"I'm not sure I'm following you, madam."
"Was she fat?"
"Oh screw you guys."
"I call Zulith to witness before the Oracle."
"Ask thy questions, Avatar. However, I shall reserve the right to silence. After all, I am the custodian of Lady Yelinda's confidential matters."
"Could you tell us why Iolo is on trial?"
"Isn't it obvious? The bard is a light-minded man, disrespectful of proper authority! Iolo is not a man to be trusted."
"Fantastic. Have a seat, shorty."
Let's see now, who else haven't we called... oh hey, how about the drunk heckler?
"I call Olon to witness before the Oracle."
"Hail to Lady Yelinda, Hail to the Oracle, hail to... hail to everyone!"
"I'm afraid he hath been drinking..."
"I drinks ta forget my pain, innkeeper. Go ahead, Avatar. Ask me thy questions."
"Uhhhhh. So this is some kinda trial, isn't it?"
"I used ta believe in that stuff. But what Beauty is there in the world for a sailor who cannot sail? If the Oracle is so powerful, why did it not save us from the storms? Why did it let so many good men die?"
"Foul blasphemy! Hold thy tongue, rogue, or face the wrath of the Oracle."
"I may be a drunk, but I be an honest drunk. I shall follow no hypocrite ta a watery grave. That's all I have to say..."
"I call Lady Yelinda to witness before the Oracle."
"I shall answer thy questions, Avatar, for the sake of the Oracle. But do not try my patience."
"See, this is what I was talking about."
"I just wanted to see if I could actually do that. Now then, let us really begin with this defense."
"I'm not sure I understand, Avatar. You've already ca-"
"I call Death Cannon to witness before the Oracle."
"Oh crap, duck and cover!"
"No, I mean, as an actual witness."
"That actually makes less sense than what we thought you were going to do with it."
"Well hello everyone! Great to be here in Serpent Isle. Lovely lovely place you have here. Might look better with a few walls blasted out, doors blown down, that sort of thing, but I'm no interior decorator."
"How can I help, Steve?"
"You seem... different."
"Well, you could say I'm something of a changed cannon. I've been taking classes at the community college, I got a retail job to make ends meet, there's this girl... things have been busy lately."
"My God, you've become a complete wimp."
"I have to question the relevance of this testimony."
"Perhaps you'd like to... cross-examine?"
"Please don't point that at me, Avatar."
"Fine, fine. I call the Guardian to witness before the Oracle."
"Oh come on."
"Hey, you're here, man, it's valid."
"Look, I'm more of an upper management type. I don't pay a lot of attention to your dumb friends.
"Well I can't very well call Batlin."
"I can give you his cell number."
"Sure, he probably has a bit more to say than me about all this."
"Alright then, call him up."
"B-Dawg. Talk to me."
"Hahahhaha. I mean, uh, IS THIS BATLIN?"
"Y-YEAH. THIS IS THE GUARDIAN. I AM. I AM THE GUARDIAN. AND I COMMAND YOU TO ANSWER WHETHER YOUR REFRIGERATOR IS RUNNING."
"Who is this? Is this the Avatar?"
"What the hell, Steve! Do you even know where I am? I barely even get a signal up here. My plan is going to fucking wring me dry thanks to you, the roaming fees are outrageous. Who even gave you this number?"
"I was under oath, man, what was I supposed to do?"
"You told me this was for emergency calls only."
"We were just calling to ask about Iolo."
"Well that is great, boss, that is just fucking fantastic. You called me to talk about Iolo. Iolo. That fat prick licks more of Lord British's asshole than his knocked-up chambermaid. Why the hell would you waste my time plotting against you and the Avatar and pretty much everybody while I'm freezing my nuts off to talk about Iolo?"
"Lord British, is this true?"
"Yeah, he's a total asslicker."
"Where did he come from?"
"No further questions. I'll come by and kill you later buddy."
"Yeah, I'd like to see you try."
Somehow, I think this might be trying Yelinda's patience.
"You'd better be going somewhere with this, Steve. Anywhere, really, at this point I'd be amazed by any outcome at all."
"I ask you to bear with me, Lady Yelinda. I call Sigmund Freud to witness before the Oracle."
"Ja, this whole trial represents the struggle of neglected daughters against a maternal figure ultimately manipulated by the father, as all such struggles tend to be."
"Mr. Iolo is an individual whose mother issues stem from his dissatisfaction with his own marriage. He clings to Steve out of a desire for a strong maternal figure."
"I'm the one asking the questions here, mister."
"Ja, that is what you think, Steve."
"I'm not sure I understand any of this."
"Perhaps we should call expert witnesses then. I call the Shadowlords to witness before the Oracle."
"What do you want this time, Steve?"
"Nosfentor! Great to see you. I'd like to draw your attention to Exhibit 1."
"That would be you and Iolo in Ultima IV, killing city guards for money."
"Indeed. And Exhibit 2?"
"How is this supposed to help my defense?"
"Oh I'm supposed to be defending you?"
"That would be you dumping off Iolo's dead body at an inn in Ultima V."
"Iolo's dead body! How very interesting. And I should point out that on Mars I encountered one Dr. David Yellin. Exhibit 3, if you would."
"I've told you before I'm n-"
"And when Dr. Yellin wouldn't cooperate, do you recall what happened?"
"Ja, you shot him."
"I shot him! Which means that Iolo has died twice. And as you are all surely aware, a man cannot be executed more than twice for committing the same crime. Thus, Iolo cannot be convicted for the crime of being Iolo."
"But that makes no sense."
"Shut up, you're dead, and zombies have no civil rights."
"Ohhhhhh, I'm starting to get it, this is retarded."
"Glad to see someone is catching on."
And So The Parade Of Witnesses Continued...
"'I' had contact with the entity known as 'Iolo' during the time period known as 'Ultima VI: The False Prophet.' 'Iolo' was present when the entity 'The Avatar' acquired a formula allowing for the cessation of all life on the current plane. Entity 'Iolo' did not attempt to stop 'me' from delivering this information to 'Steve,' despite knowing that this entity was 'an asshole.'"
"I dunno, he was okay."
"To point out that Iolo was never prosecuted for shooting our high priest in the forehead."
"I call Pharaoh Man to witness before the Oracle."
"Why would you even call me? I'm not in this game."
"Oh. Well, I guess you're not. Carry on then."
"Can I go too?"
"No, you have to stay Guy From Excitebike. I may yet have need of you... or your bike."
"What the hell, is anything sacred to you?"
"Yes. The individual human mind. In a child's power to master the multiplication table, there is more sanctity than in all your shouted 'amens' and 'holy holies' and 'hosannas.'"
"What do the words that come out of your mouth even mean?"
...Until At Last...
"And so, to conclude, I have my star witness. I call Warren Spector to witness before the Oracle."
"This is somewhat unorthodox, Steve."
"Maybe so. Now, Mr. Spector, you are the producer of a game called Ultima VII Part 2: Serpent Isle, are you not?"
"And that is the game in which we currently reside, correct?"
"Yes, it is."
"And an individual by the name of Iolo is as well."
"Well, of course."
"Would you say that Iolo is... essential... to the plot of this game?"
"Yes he is."
"So he couldn't possibly be executed or imprisoned now, could he?"
"No, I suppose he could not."
"No further questions."
"Are you finished?"
"Almost. Now, I'm no idealist to believe firmly in the integrity of our courts and in the jury system - that is no ideal to me, it is a living, working reality. Gentlemen, a court is no better than each man of you sitting before me on this jury. A court is only as sound as its jury, and a jury is only as sound as the men who make it up. And in this case, the jury is a giant statue of a naked chick. So I'm pretty sure anything I said today wouldn't help Iolo's case at all. Fortunately, I won't have to, because I cheated. Pronounce the verdict!"
"Iolo is innocent! Set him and his companions free! The true criminals are Priestess Kylista and Great Captain Voldin, who have conspired to convict this innocent man!"
"Well I'll be damned. How the hell did you pull that off, Steve?"
"We were really drunk and stumbled into Alyssand's shop, planning to break up the place and shove Delin down some stairs until he was really incoherent. But Alyssand had other plans."
"She mentioned something about a secret in the temple and gave us a key she said a sympathetic guard had given her. We decided it would be more fun to break something in the temple, so we went there instead."
"We passed by your cell, but you were too busy moping to notice. That's when we discovered the Oracle's terrible secret."
"Wait, thou art not Kylista!"
"How very astute of you."
"So, thou hast found out our little scheme, hast thou? I'm certain that thou hadst help from thy companions to come this far, girl."
"Why would she need our help?"
"Thou shouldst have understood -- a woman cannot be left to control a city! They have not the brains for such matters!"
"I have enough brains to splatter yours on the back wall if you keep sassin' me, buddy."
"Of course, I can never allow thee to leave this chamber alive..."
"Naturally, we ignored Voldin's futile attempts to kill us and fiddled with the levers until quite suddenly, the Oracle spoke."
"There will be a Grand Trial soon. At the end of the proceedings, I shall proclaim the verdict. I have been told to say the following... Iolo is guilty of associating with Daemons to destroy our Beauty! The fiend, Steve, is also guilty! Such offense to Beauty cannot go unpunished... The stain of their presence must be washed away with their blood."
"Yeah, we're gonna have to change that."
"Stop ignoring me and stop touching those levers!"
"I shall proclaim whatever thou dost instruct me to proclaim. What dost thou wish me to say regarding the accused traitor, Master?"
"You seem like a pretty reasonable giant naked chick. Why don't you just tell the truth?"
"Of course! I will say that the trial is corrupted, and I shall denounce the true traitors."
"No you won't!"
"Shut up, dude."
"I have waited many years for this moment. I thank thee, Master! I have been the prisoner of the Great Captains for many generations, stranger. I do not know who thou art, but I am glad thou hast come! At last, I can speak the Truth."
"What happened next was fuzzy, I think somehow you got out of your cell, then forgot the whole thing after we entered the courtroom. Which brings us back to where we are now."
"We have captured the falsehearted traitors, Lady Yelinda! Kylista and Voldin are in chains."
"Thou hast acted correctly, Jorvin -- the Oracle hath just denounced them..."
"The Priestess of Beauty hath confessed to me that she and Great Captain Voldin were united in an evil conspiracy."
"By use of secret levers, they dared to control the utterings of the sacred Oracle! Only by the actions of the brave Avatar hath the Oracle been freed to utter the truth! Who knows how long this deception hath been practiced! Have the citizens of Fawn always been the victims of the Great Captains and the Priestess?"
"I did mistrust thy words previously, Alyssand, but now that Kylista hath confessed... I know not what to believe."
"Such perfidy makes my blood run cold. Have the traitors jailed until I decide what fate they deserve! I am sorry that we have delayed thee in thy quest, Avatar. Please forgive us. Thou mayest leave Fawn freely, and be assured of a warm welcome if thou shouldst return. Thou hast shown me that I have much to learn about being a ruler..."
"Well, hey, nobody's perfect, right?"
"Um, I almost died?"
"And I thank thee. Iolo, we have wronged thee. There is nothing I can do to erase our shame, but I would be pleased if thou wouldst accept a token of our regret. Here is the Crystal Rose of Love..."
"Am I supposed to appreciate this?"
"Guards, release Iolo."
"This trial is now dismissed!"
"Well, there's that at least."
"The Cause is triumphant, Steve! Lady Yelinda hath ended the exile of The Fellowship. The Great Captains are in disgrace, and Lady Yelinda doth rule for herself now. If there is anything I can ever do for thee, return to Fawn, and I shall aid thee."
"To be honest, I really don't care."
Note that if you just tell the Oracle to proclaim your companion innocent, Alyssand is less than happy:
"The Cause is doomed, Steve. I am pleased that thy friend hath been freed from jail... Yet I believe that we somehow missed the last chance to expose Kylista and her minions for the hypocrites they truly are! Thy part is done. Go thy way, continue thy quest -- we of the Cause shall struggle on without thee."
Wow, the game actually paid attention to the fact that I didn't kill somebody, for once.
"So thou hast come to pity me, eh, Steve? Well, I'm not done yet! Surely, thou dost not think that Leon the Preacher and Alyssand the Weaver have won? They don't have the strength to govern. Give it time. Perhaps three moons. And then the people will clamor for the old ways, and remember Voldin in his jail cell. Then I shall rule as I always deserved, as King of Fawn!"
"King? All you could do was manipulate the Oracle."
"The Oracle hath always been a fraud! Dost thou not comprehend? Even in our ancient homeland, the Statue of Beauty was controlled by the Great Captains. It said what we told it to. For centuries, the women of our culture have believed themselves to be divine. Yet the men governed secretly, through the revelations issued by the Oracle. Thou hast destroyed a great tradition, foreigner! It was glorious, while it lasted..."
"Thou wouldst not understand..."
If you're male, Voldin will actually tell you:
"Learn from our experience, Avatar! Women are easily controlled by their vanity. Tell them that they are superior -- and then manipulate them. That's the key! The females of our race are exceedingly willful, yet they lack common sense. Without men to dominate them, they would ruin everything."
Anyway, his thoughts on Kylista:
"She was merely our pawn -- a pretty thing, clever in a limited way, but always our tool."
"Close thy trap, Voldin, or I'll scratch thine eyes out!"
"Such a clever threat, girl! Dost thou not realize that thou dost live at my pleasure? Fear not -- so long as the nights remain cold, I shall have a use for thee..."
And speaking of Kylista!
"I am so grateful that thou hast come to visit me, Steve! Everyone else hath forgotten me. I am so lonely here... I see now that Captain Voldin and his men did take advantage of me, through the deception called the Oracle."
"Of course we did, Priestess. Men have always had the advantage over the weaker sex..."
"Be still, Voldin. Thou hast been brought low, even as I have. How could I have been so naive? I was never part of their plans, but only a tool. Perhaps Lady Yelinda will spare my life, when she understands my role -- I, too, was a victim!"
And thus we finish Fawn. Wasn't that
The game really expects Dupre to be the one on trial. He's the only person who has special conversation text when locked up under the temple. Iolo, for example, still has 'join' as an option. We can recruit him back into the party.
He can't get through the cell door, of course. But we can fix that by teleporting. Conveniently, both staircases out of here count as teleporters. When you reenter the trial with the companion in your party, they vanish, then reappear when the guard brings them in. Freaky!
Yet more proof that the game didn't account very well for other companions being on trial. Strange, because they made up three separate dialogue paths for each of the character witnesses.