Part Thirteen: You spoony bard!
Rusalka's port looks decidedly familiar, but there's a distinct lack of Imperials. And after we had such a clever plan, too.
The town is abuzz with the disappearance of world-famous bard Eduardo. There is also 4th level magic for sale here, which is much more exciting, if you ask me. Especially the addition of Teleport. Finally
There's an NPC guarding the town exit, so we have no choice but to head over to the tavern and inquire about our wayward bard. The bartender thinks we're crazy to go out looking for Imperial troops, but he relents. Smart of him, you shouldn't argue with heavily armed kids. The NPC will now let us out of town and says the Imperials are in the Northeastern mountains.
We go up the predictably named Mt. Rusalka, which definitely shows signs of being used as a base. At the top, we find one, count em, soldier, who is rather annoyed at the pirates for bringing us here. He refuses to answer our questions, and instead turns himself into a monster, revealing himself to be an Imperial "weresoldier". Boss battle!
He's not tough at all, and he falls quickly to my shiny new Bio spell and Jump ability. After we defeat him, he still refuses to tell us where the "witch" is, and instead says we'll never find her "as long as the bard remains hidden from sight." Hmmm.
We head back to Rusalka, where the stay at the inn is free. Must be time for another midnight cutscene.
Sure enough, Sol is having trouble sleeping. We gain control of him after he crawls out of bed.
Awww, Aigis is dreaming about rescuing Diana. Cute! Sol wanders down to the docks, where he sees a someone in a Black Mage
-like outfit who vanishes after a moment. Continuing on, he comes upon a frog playing a lute and singing. Wonder who that could be?
It runs away and jumps into a tiny hole in the wall. Crap, I think I know where this is going. The party conveniently shows up. Sol tells them about the singing frog. Dusk drops this little gem:
"Our fearless leader has taken one too many knocks on the head."
Snarkiness must run in the family. They all head back to the inn to finish the night's sleep.
The next morning we go to the hole the frog jumped down. It's too small for us to fit into, but Sarah has the brilliant idea to turn us into frogs so we can go after it. I was afraid of that. We're completely helpless as frogs and we can't change back. Fortunately, the enemies (bees, mice, and snakes) are also pretty weak.
The frogs in the sewers are happy to point out the new guy, and following their instructions we find him playing his lute at the back of the sewers. He informs us he is Eduardo, and Sol is actually surprised by this.
Apparently, a "witch" appeared to him and offered him a way to be with the mermaid he'd fallen in love with. And now he's stuck as a frog. (A Little Mermaid role and gender reversal with a dash of Frog Prince! How cute!) Sarah tries using magic on him to return him to human form, but it doesn't work.
We decide to seek out a magical talisman that will let us breathe underwater, although I don't know how going to the Underwater Palace is supposed to help any of us. Eduardo joins the party... as a frog. But since he can still use his lute in frog-form, he can attack for okay-ish damage instead of the 1 damage each our other party members do in that form. He also has his Magic Music
, which buffs the party or adds status ailments to the enemies.
The Rusalkans tell us we just missed the Gypsy who sells the magic we need. Of course. We finally catch up to him in the Forest of the Fey, where his kid is swimming in the water while his wife looks on. He digs out a Fairy in a Bottle
that makes the Bubbly Water we need to breathe under the ocean. For the low, low price of one million gil.
Sarah is offended by his cruelty. Sol is either offended by the same, the price, or both. Before we can do anything about either, however, a whirlpool forms in the pond and sucks his kid in. We rush in to rescue him, which results in us getting attacked by 3 water elementals. No good deed ever goes unpunished.
This battle is tough to start, but once you've killed one of the Vortexes it gets a lot easier. Once they're all dead, the gypsy gives us the faerie bottle out of gratitude. Sarah immediately lets the little guy go. He makes us some Bubbly Water (they really should have translated this as Oxyale) in gratitude and he hurries home to his mother. D'aww.
Before we head back to Rusalka, there's an ice cave hidden back behind the forest. Wonder what could be there?
Tune in next time for an ice time.