Part Seven: We get a shiny new toy... and break it.
It seems Liene Castle has not been swallowed by pulsing darkness, so there's that. However, the guards at the entrance attack us the moment we show up. When Aigis tries to reason with them, they inform him they have broken their alliance with Lux.
Rather stupid of them, considering we outnumber them 5 to 3. They die, of course.
We decide to investigate the castle for clues as to the whereabouts of Glaive, Diana, and Alba. No one cares about Nacht, poor guy.
There's a soldier inside selling stuff, I buy some higher level magic. The castle appears to be infested with killer Mangy Hounds and Wild Rats. They might want to look into that. There's also a whole bunch of visible encounters running around in the form of homicidal Avalonian soldiers.
In the bottom of the castle we come to the dungeon, which is guarded by a Hell Minion. He doesn't seem happy to see us, and he summons his "pet", a Chimera named Butch. Butch plus Hell Minion is a tough fight. After I kill Butch, Hell gives himself multiple powerups and vows to kill us. Sarah and her Sylph summon are definitely the MVP this battle, as Sylph does decent damage and heals everyone for 150 HP. I also unlock a new F-Ability, Thunder Slash, which appears to have been unlocked by using Thunder + Strike.
In the dungeon we free a gnome, who asks us if we're collecting tails. If you answer in the affirmative, he informs you that tails "are so last season", and that he'll trade us good items for fangs. Then he runs off. ...Kay.
We also free the other prisoner, who tells us that if who we're looking for isn't being held here, they must be in Avalon, which is only reachable by airship. Looks like Sol's dream will be coming true sooner than he thought. We resolve to "borrow" an airship, and make our way back out of the dungeon.
Ho, hum. Backtracking. Back in the entry hall, we witness an officer unlocking a previously locked door. Clearly, we must follow! But once inside the room, we find that the soldier has vanished into thin air. Hmmm.
What follows is an amusing interlude where Sol sticks his head in a jar of rancid water, sips a strange concoction (that cures our status effects), breaks the clock, makes the bed, tries to move a bookcase, and finally, probably out of desperation, waters a pot of flowers, opening a secret door.
The secret passage comes out behind the castle, where we find "one epic airship", in Sol's words. Aigis notes that it's a warship. It's preparing to take off, so we stow away on board. Which is surprisingly easy - no one sees us climb right up on deck. That doesn't last, however, shortly after takeoff someone finally notices the unauthorized passengers. After killing off the soldiers doing their job, Sol decides we need to just take over the whole ship. Sure, why not?
Although the game tells me I should go take over the helm, I run around the ship and explore. Because, well, treasure. And a little extra exp never hurts. Turns out to be a good decision when I find the Aft Key at the bottom of the ship.
The save point on the airship is apparently the last one in chapter one. In the home stretch!
The Aft Key unlocks the Aft Deck (who'd have thought?), where I am treated to a series of three battles: mooks, harder mooks, and a boss. The boss is moderately challenging, but I suspect this is more because I forgot to change Sol and Aigis back into a Warrior and Monk from Thieves. Woops!
Still, with a lot of Sylph and Cure->All, I manage to beat the captain without running out of Pheonix Downs. The airship is mine! Mwahahaha!
I fly over an open field that full of strangely familiar looking sleeping dragons
. There's a girl there with pink hair, and she signals the dragons to take off. Meanwhile, back at the airship, Sarah seems to sense something is wrong. She tries to warn us, but it's too late - a weirdo with purple hair teleports in.
He introduces himself as Baugauven of the Flame, one of Avalon's four generals. Could be a botched localization of Bhagavan. He curb stomps us laughably easily. He tries to use Final Backdraft to finish us off, but Elgo heroically jumps in front of us and takes 9999 damage.
Quote Sol: Elgoooo!
Baugs is about to finish us off anyway when the dragons show up. They start blasting Imperial soldiers left and right and set my shiny new airship on fire. Boo. Strangely, this causes Baugs to teleport away, despite the fact that he absorbs the fire element. He probably figures we'll die when the airship burns. He's clearly never read the Evil Overlord List.
Next, we have a touching death scene for Elgo. He says it was his duty to protect us, and that he's glad the chosen ones are so kind-hearted.
The he collapses and, despite Sol's less than gentle shaking, doesn't get up. Practical Dusk goes and grabs the helm, but he can't control the airship. And then some mooks who apparently have zero
self preservation instinct attack us. Somehow, Elgo manages to get up during the battle and grab the helm. He tells us to go. After some argument, Sol and co do as he ask, escaping.
Elgo holds on as long as he can, and finally collapses. The airship crashes in a fiery blaze. The screen goes black.
The screen displays "Meanwhile...", and we cut to Nacht, Alba, Diana, and Glaive around a campfire. Diana is dreaming out loud of Sol. Alba asks if Sol is her boyfriend, to which Glaive answers "sooner or later." Alba implies that Glaive is in love with Diana, too.
Nacht is startled by something, and Alba lampshades his tacitern nature with:
"What is it, boy? Did Timmy fall down the well?"
*snerk* Alba has just become my favorite character.
The person in the Nice Hat
we saw waaaay back at the very beginning of the game comes out of the woods.
Aaand the chapter ends. Tune in next time, when we find out what happened to Mr. Sunshine and Rainbows and the Musketeers.