Pseudo-Singularity II: Subterranean World of Folklore - Agartha
Da Vinci: Hey there, Fujimaru. Looks like you came ready for anything, just like I told you!
Fujimaru 1: Of course. Is this about the next operation?
Mash: That's right, Senpai. To get straight to the point, I–
Fujimaru 2: You're looking as lovely as the Mona Lisa.
Da Vinci: What's this?! Is this your attempt at flattering your commander!?
Da Vinci: Who the hell taught you to be so clever!? Nonetheless...
Da Vinci: That was very “bene”! So “bene,” in fact, that you deserve one of Da Vinci's handmade gold stars of excellence!
Da Vinci: Obvious as some things may be, it's still worthwhile to point them out now and again.
Da Vinci: It's a sad fact of life that people can get used to almost anything, after all.
Da Vinci: Without a bit of affirmation here and there, one could even become accustomed to my own marvelous beauty...Hard as that may be to imagine.
Mash: Um, acting commander? Can we please focus on the matter at hand?
Da Vinci: Haha, I was just trying to lighten the mood, especially since our subject is pretty heavy.
Da Vinci: Okay, Mash, take it away.
Mash: ...Well, Senpai, to get straight to the point...
Mash: We've discovered what appears to be another Singularity involving one of the surviving Demon God Pillars, like in Shinjuku...
Fujimaru 1: A Demon God Pillar!
Mash: That's right. As you know, the 72 Pillars are Demon Gods with fearsome power that combine to make up Solomon...or rather, Magical Protocol Goetia.
Mash: We believe this to be one of the pillars that escaped from the Temple of Time.
Fujimaru 2: ...!
Mash: We've checked it against the data we acquired from Shinjuku, and are all but certain.
Fujimaru 1: What is it?
Da Vinci: I don't blame Mash for not wanting to say this.
Da Vinci: You may have Rayshifted to all manner of places and Singularities...
Da Vinci: But this one is highly unusual, even compared to your previous endeavors.
Da Vinci: At first, even we couldn't believe that a Singularity would appear there, of all places.
Da Vinci: But we double and triple-checked our calculations, and we're sure of our results.
Da Vinci: We have to assume it's really there and act accordingly, even if it doesn't seem to make any sense.
Da Vinci: Of course, it goes without saying that there's no telling what could happen there, or what sort of dangers may be waiting.
Da Vinci: But that's what Rayshifts are for: to go to times and places that don't even begin to qualify as ordinary.
Mash: ...Right. Chaldea's Order applies even if–no, precisely because these situations are so unusual.
Mash: And of course, it makes sense that the Chaldea Master with the most knowledge and experience would be the one we send to look into and resolve the matter.
Mash: Which means...
Fujimaru 1: Another Singularity for me, hm?
Da Vinci: You got it. The fact of the matter is, we don't have any other viable Rayshift candidates.
Da Vinci: I know we're asking a lot of you, taking on another long-term investigation so soon after Shinjuku, but we really don't have another option.
Da Vinci: That said, I wouldn't blame you for refusing this time around. But it looks like I don't need to worry about that, do I?
Mash: Right. In our current situation, when there's no one that can take on the responsibility of Rayshifting.
Mash: Master Fujimaru is more determined than anyone to take [♂ his /♀ her] turn at bat.
Mash: ...I just wish I could fight alongside you again, Senpai.
Fujimaru 1: I feel better knowing you're here supporting me.
Fujimaru 2: You will, as soon as you're back to your old self.
Mash: Thank you, Senpai. I'll do my best to make that happen soon.
Mash: In the meantime, I'll be sure to keep observing you here.
Mash: I'll use every piece of information at my disposal to eliminate danger before it reaches you.
Mash: In that sense, all of Chaldea's observational equipment will be my shield.
Da Vinci: Well said. In battles like these, that kind of support is absolutely crucial.
Da Vinci: People out in the field tend to overlook them, but logistical support and reconnaissance are critical aspects of success on a battlefield.
Da Vinci: Besides, you have other capable Servants. It may be dangerous, but you'll have everything you need to succeed on your mission.
Da Vinci: All right then, since we can't keep referring to these as Pseudo-Singularities, I think it's time to give this Order a proper name.
Da Vinci: We are up against stray remnants that broke free from the 72 Demon God Pillars during our battle at the Temple of Time.
Da Vinci: These remnants developed consciousnesses of their own, deserted Goetia, and scattered themselves around the world of their own volition.
Da Vinci: Our mission is to retrieve these dregs that should never have existed in the first place.
Da Vinci: So, given all of that, we will call the operation to eliminate the Pseudo-Singularities “Remnant Order. ”
Da Vinci: In essence, it'll be a cleanup operation of the Grand Order's collateral damage. Not that that means it'll be easier than the other Singularities.
Fujimaru 1: Got it! So, where am I going now?
Da Vinci: Listen up! We have determined the time period and location of this Singularity.
Da Vinci: It is in central Asia sometime in the 2000s. It's very close to our own time, much like Shinjuku.
Da Vinci: To date, there are no records of noteworthy wars or other major incidents taking place here. The strange part, though, is the Singularity's coordinates.
Da Vinci: It turns out that this one is located deep beneath the surface of the earth.
Da Vinci: What we're dealing with is a mysterious underground hollow large enough to house an entire country that appeared seemingly out of nowhere in central Asia.
Da Vinci: That is your next destination!
Announcement A: Starting Unsummon Program. Commencing Spiritron Conversion.
Announcement A: Rayshift begins in 3...2...1...
Announcement A: All systems are go.
Announcement A: Analyze Lost Order. Commencing Remnant Order Search.
Section 1: Welcomed by the Subterranean World
Fujimaru 1: ...
Da Vinci: It looks like you've safely arrived at the Rayshift coordinates. You're so lucky that I spent all that time making sure everything was in order.
Fou: Fou, Fooou!
Da Vinci: Your surroundings look to be in fine shape too! I've rarely seen Fou so happy to have tagged along!
Mash: Physical and mental state, all green. Your values all appear to be within normal parameters, but...
Mash: How are you feeling, Senpai? Do you feel sick, or short of breath?
Mash: If you experience any numbness, headache, stomachache, or terrible, wrenching heartache at the idea of not having your kouhai with you, let us know!
Fujimaru 1: I'm feeling fine so far, but...
Fujimaru 2: It is a little lonesome over here.
Da Vinci: Huh, it's not like you to be so vague, Fujimaru.
Da Vinci: From what I can tell, there isn't anything particularly distressing about your surroundings. Is there something on your mind?
Mash: I don't think that's it, acting commander. There are some things you can't tell from scan data alone.
Mash: Remember, Senpai is the first person to set foot in a place that has been completely unknown to humanity.
Mash: We may have tried to find out as much about it as we could ahead of time, but there is really no way of knowing what sort of effect that could have on someone.
Da Vinci: Good point. I know I certainly wasn't expecting to see this much greenery in a subterranean space.
Da Vinci: In fact...Hmm. There IS something strange about this place.
Da Vinci: It's...that there's nothing strange about it. This place is several kilometers under the surface...
Da Vinci: We should be dealing with extreme heat and air pressure, and yet there's nothing of the sort as far as I can tell.
Da Vinci: Where is the air that Fujimaru is breathing right now even coming from? Plants? If that's the case, how are they here? How do they have light for photosynthesis?
Da Vinci: I know we've seen the underworld, but that could only exist in the Age of Gods, not the year 2000.
Da Vinci: So how can this underground world be so lush!?
Da Vinci: Even a universal genius like me has no explanation!
Fujimaru 1: I think the moss on the ceiling is glowing.
Mash: Then...perhaps it's a type of luminescent moss?
Da Vinci: You'd think so, but that type of moss only collects ambient light through its lens-shaped cell structure.
Da Vinci: As much as you'll see it in fiction, it's not really possible for plants to emit light equivalent to the sun's rays.
Mash: I see...So...we really don't know what's going on here...
Fujimaru 1: It's nothing like the Babylonian underworld.
Mash: It doesn't seem like the Aztec underground world Xibalba that Quetzalcoatl once told us about either.
Mash: It seems like you're in an actual subterranean space rather than an alternate dimension for the afterlife.
Da Vinci: All we can say for sure, Fujimaru, is that this place is...bizarre.
Da Vinci: Put differently, this place doesn't seem to quite be following the laws of nature as we understand them.
Da Vinci: In a sense, it may be best to think of that underground space as a different, independent world.
Da Vinci: Hmm...A whole new world...I think it deserves a better name than just “underground space. ”
Da Vinci: From now on, I'm going to call it “Agartha. ”
Da Vinci: It's the name of a legendary subterranean kingdom from occult myth. Pretty fitting, wouldn't you say?
Fujimaru 1: Nice and simple. I like it.
Mash: Yes, I feel the same.
Mash: Although...wasn't Helena the one who told us about that?
Fujimaru 2: Hasn't Mahatma♀Helena mentioned that before?
Mash: Mahatma? You mean, Helena Blavatsky?
Da Vinci: Now that you mention it...Yes. She did write about Agartha back when she was alive.
Da Vinci: As I recall, she said it was one of the most important elements of occult history–an ideal underground paradise, located at the center of the Hollow Earth.
Da Vinci: While it's too soon to say if the object of her research has anything to do with this place...
Da Vinci: ...there are at least some similarities with this strange underground world.
Da Vinci: No doubt Helena would have been overjoyed to see this for herself.
Da Vinci: In fact, I thought she'd be interested in hearing about this situation, but she's not here, is she?
Mash: ...Master, acting commander, I'm so sorry.
Mash: I forgot to mention that back when we first confirmed Agartha's existence...
Mash: ...It was reported that a number of Chaldea's Servants have gone missing.
Mash: And one of them is Helena Blavatsky...
Da Vinci: Well well, and here I was only half-joking. Maybe she's already there.
Da Vinci: Of course, this is Helena we're talking about. She may have Rayshifted there on her own after hearing about the place, or she may have been resummoned there automatically for a completely different reason.
Da Vinci: After all, she is the heretic–I mean, hero of the occult world, with ties to UFOs and everything.
Da Vinci: I don't think she'd be able to keep away from a place like that with how connected it is to the occult.
Fujimaru 1: Hang on. Did you say “a number of”?
Mash: Y-yes, I did...We've confirmed three so far: Heracles, Fergus, and Drake.
Da Vinci: Hmm. I can't think of any connection between them.
Da Vinci: It's possible that, with the Incineration of Humanity having been stopped, they just chose to end their contracts on their own.
Da Vinci: But...I'd bet there's some kind of connection to this, even if we can't tell what it might be yet. Anyway, we can worry about that later.
Da Vinci: Right now, all we can say for sure is that Helena, and maybe a few other Servants, might be there.
Da Vinci: If you can track them down, I think you should try to rendezvous with them. They should be willing to cooperate, since you already know them and all.
Mash: I agree. And if Helena really is there, we may be able to learn something useful from her, since she knows so much about mythical underground worlds.
Mash: That would be a great help in keeping Master safe. So if she's there, I hope you find her soon!
Astolfo: Don't you worry about a thing, Master!
Astolfo: You have other capable Servants who are willing and able to accompany you wherever you go, however strange or dangerous!
Astolfo: Servants like...MEEE!
Fujimaru 1: Well, someone ate their vitamins this morning.
Astolfo: Huh? Hehe...I dunno what you mean! Buuut...was that a compliment? Yaaay!
Fujimaru 2: Hey there! Who are you again?
Fou: Fou, Fooou!
Astolfo: Hahaha. Stoppit, Fou! That tickles. We both snuck along to accompany Master, so we should be friends!
Mash: Astolfo! As in Astolfo the Rider-class Servant, one of the Twelve Paladins of Charlemagne!?
Astolfo: That's meee! This looked like it was gonna be fun, so I thought I'd come along and help out!
Astolfo: Mash, could you tell the guy working the Coffins I said thanks for helping me stow away? Thaaanks!
Mash: Sure, he's right here. Astolfo says thank you, Mr. Meunière. Of course, I hardly need to tell you that this is against regulations.
Mash: You won't be fired since you did it to help Master, but I believe there may be some ramifications when it comes time to evaluate your bonus.
Meunière: Woohoo! Hey, I was happy to help Astolfo out! Totally worth it!
Astolfo: Thanks, mister! I can't wait to start exploring this strange new world! It's the perfect playground for me!
Astolfo: After all, what Heroic Spirit knows adventuring better than me!? I've even been to the moooooon!
Astolfo: Weeell, that was maybe less about adventure than it was about Roland acting like a fool after he got rejected.
Mash: I've heard about that...but I'm still not sure if it actually happened or was supposed to be a metaphor...
H：???: Hold it. Did you think there was only one escort present?
Mash: Another Spirit Origin reading!?
Mash: So you snuck two Servants into the Rayshift? You'll be lucky to get any bonus at all!
Meunière: Ooh, ouch! But to make d'Eon happy, I'd give up my bonus in a heartbeat!
d'Eon: Merci, Monsieur Meunière. I would not be here now were it not for your courage.
d'Eon: Good to see you again, Master. I shall join Astolfo as your escort.
d'Eon: There is no keener sword for the protection of nobility.
d'Eon: And as far as I am concerned, you are now French royalty.
d'Eon: Thus, I shall protect you with my life, on my honor as a Knight of the White Lily.
Mash: Chevalier d'Eon...Thank you. I'm glad to know you'll be accompanying Master.
Mash: Never mind the stowing away.
Astolfo: ...I kinda feel like that makes it sound like you WEREN'T feeling so good about me accompanying [♂ him /♀ her].
Mash: I-I'm sorry! I didn't mean it like that...
Da Vinci: (I was just going to look the other way here, since it's never a bad thing to have trustworthy escorts...)
Da Vinci: (But if Mash finds out I let someone get away with bending the rules for my own benefit, she'd never look at me the same way again. Better just keep quiet. )
Mash: At any rate, it's definitely good to know that two capable Servants like you are looking out for Master. But in the future, you need to go through the proper channels before you–
Mash: Wait! I'm picking up hostile entities headed your way! From their movements, they look like wild beasts!
Da Vinci: I should have known there would be wildlife down there. Part of me is dying to know more about this underground ecosystem.
Da Vinci: But that can wait. Now that you Servants are there, there's nothing else to be done.
Da Vinci: Astolfo, the crazy cavalryman with the mythical steed. d'Eon, the indecipherable Knight of the White Lily...
Da Vinci: You may be complete opposites in behavior, but you're much alike in character deep down. You know what you need to do, yes?
Astolfo: Of course! I'll take these things out lickety-split! And then, Master will say:
Astolfo: “Oh Astolfo, I'm so glad you're here with me! You're the only one I need! Maybe you should change your name to Bestest-fo. ”
Astolfo: ...or something like that! Hehehe!
d'Eon: Oui. My sword shall shine with all its light. Not that mere beasts will understand its beauty or grace.
Da Vinci: A little beauty never hurt! Look at you, Fujimaru. You only just got there, and you've already got two blushing beauties at your beck and call.
Da Vinci: Actually, if you count myself and Mash, that would make four.
Mash: N-no need to include me in that count!
Da Vinci: Aw, you're so modest, Mash. At any rate, just make sure you're not so overcome by our beauty that you neglect your surroundings, Master.
Da Vinci: All right, good luck with your first battle in Agartha!
Fujimaru 1: (Four blushing beauties...? )
Fujimaru 1: (No, but, without Mash around...)
Fujimaru 1: (Wait, who's even blushing then!? )
Mash: Hostiles eliminated. Well done, everyone!
Astolfo: That was easy-peasy lemon-squeezy!
d'Eon: Astolfo disrupted the enemy's formation, while I kept Master safe. A surprisingly well-balanced strategy.
d'Eon: ...However, we are lacking in destructive power, since Astolfo's Noble Phantasm is all bark and no bite.
d'Eon: We may need someone at the vanguard with more power. Maybe Sanson? ...No, he is a gentleman, and thus best set against people, not beasts.
d'Eon: The Queen and I are the same type of Servants...Amadeus? No, absolutely not.
Fujimaru 1: We'd better decide what to do next.
Mash: I couldn't agree more, Senpai.
Da Vinci: Same. First, I'd like to hear more about your surroundings.
Da Vinci: Tell us everything you can see and hear.
Da Vinci: We ARE analyzing your video feed, of course, but it's helpful for you to give us your impressions as well.
Fujimaru 1: Got it. Well, uh, first of all...
Da Vinci: Hmm. So the ceiling is very high up, and appears to be made of stone. The floor is covered in plants, just like aboveground...
Mash: ...and the terrain ranges from hills and forests to rivers.
Mash: That all seems to match our initial evaluations of the topography. However...
Da Vinci: Right. Never mind how odd that all is topographically speaking. Fujimaru's impression of it doesn't add up either.
Da Vinci: It's almost like a mosaic. Various features and environs are combined in ways you'd not expect to see in a single landmass.
Da Vinci: It's as if a bunch of authors got together to all write one combined anthology of Agartha.
Astolfo: Ya think? I dunno, I'm an adventuring expert, and I've seen lotsa weird stuff up on the surface, too!
d'Eon: ...In any case, this world's topography is not so important as our mission. We are here to find the Demon God Pillar, correct?
Mash: That's right. However, its signal has become muddled since Master's arrival.
Mash: We're still fairly certain that it's somewhere here in Agartha, but I'm afraid we can't narrow it down more than that right now.
Da Vinci: Essentially, our readings on Agartha are oddly blurred and undefined, like in the results of our topographical investigation.
Da Vinci: That's just one example, though. All the data we're collecting about Agartha will sometimes just shift to entirely different values with no continuity.
Da Vinci: And yet, with things in your immediate vicinity, Fujimaru, the continuity appears to be perfectly stable.
Da Vinci: In other words, the closer you are to the observation target, the more accurate our results will be.
Da Vinci: Which means we have no choice but to have you continue to investigate on foot.
Fujimaru 1: You think there are any other people here?
Fujimaru 2: I hope I can find someone to talk to.
Da Vinci: It's hard to be certain with how erratic readings are, as I mentioned, but we're picking up what appear to be artificial structures in the area.
Da Vinci: So, I wouldn't rule out the possibility of people nearby.
Mash: In that case, we should head for an area where we can get reliable data, and use that as our base of operations while–
Astolfo: Okay, Master! Let's start by heading somewhere with lotsa people!
Astolfo: Don't worry, adventuring sense will get us there, piece of cake! Humm...This way!
Mash: A-Astolfo, wait!
Mash: ...Huh? I thought he'd disappeared over that hill. He certainly came back quickly.
Mash: ...Wait! What's this signal!?
Astolfo: Waaah! I-it's not my faaault, honest! They were already headed here when I spotted them!
d'Eon: More beasts, hmm? It would appear we missed a few earlier.
d'Eon: Although...it seems as though they're running away from something that frightened them...
Astolfo: Okay, let's see where those beasties' tracks lead...I wonder if there'll be any people?
Fujimaru 1: I trust your instincts, Astolfo.
Astolfo: Hehe, thanks, Master! It's nice to be trusted!
Fujimaru 2: I trust d'Eon's eye for observation.
d'Eon: But of course. I will not let you down, Master.
Astolfo: Hey, looky-looky! That was fast! Isn't that a guy there on the ground, over by that boulder?
d'Eon: The beasts' tracks continue on past that point. It seems unlikely to be a coincidence.
d'Eon: Perhaps this man was unwittingly caught up in their stampede, and fled there for shelter.
Astolfo: Let's wake him up and find out. Hellooo! Are you alive?
Astolfo: Oh good, he is. Eh? Hang on. Isn't this guy...
Mash: Wait! I'm getting a Servant reading! Master, that boy is a Servant!
Mash: But...Huh? This Spirit Origin pattern...
???: Nnn...Who are you guys?
Fujimaru 1: Just wayward travelers.
Astolfo: Yup! We pretty much just got here. How are you doing? You were conked out!
Fujimaru 2: Are you okay?
???: I...think I'm ok. Thank you.
???: Just the fact that you bothered to ask tells me you're good people. I'm glad to have met you.
d'Eon: I was going to ask if you live down here...but if you are a Servant, it seems there would be little point in doing so.
d'Eon: So instead, let me ask you this: do you know much about this underground world?
???: No, I don't. All I know is that I was summoned here.
???: I know that I'm a Servant,but that's really about all I know.
???: Did you say “underground world”? That explains why I can't see the sky.
???: Still, I don't get why a fledgling like me would be summoned here in the first place.
Astolfo: Are you? A fledgling, I mean.
???: I'm afraid so. The whole reason you found me collapsed on the ground like that...
???: ...is because I was helpless against those Demonic Beasts that came stampeding out of nowhere.
???: I wonder if those were the Demonic Boars they say every Celtic warrior should fight at least once in their lives. If so, I can die without any regrets now...
Mash: Master...um...This is very hard to believe, but that boy is...well...
???: Oh? Are these friends of yours druids?
Da Vinci: Something like that. We're helping those guys out from behind the scenes. Don't worry, you can trust us.
Da Vinci: Now, let me see this Spirit Origin pattern for myself...Oh? Oh!?
Da Vinci: That IS interesting. I can see why Mash is at a loss.
???: You're all good people, so I believe I can trust you.
???: This unshakeable trust I feel must come from another, different version of me having met you before.
Fujimaru 1: Maybe.
Fujimaru 2: Maybe?
???: I'm sure of it.
???: ...I apologize for asking this out of nowhere, but would you mind if I joined you?
???: To be honest, I still have a long way to go to become a full-fledged warrior.
???: I can't promise I'll be of much help, but I can promise I won't get in your way.
???: ...I believe the way my heart is racing right now means going with you is the right thing for me to do.
???: Of course, I'm aware that that alone won't merit your trust, so as a sign of good faith, I'll tell you my True Name.
???: I'm Fergus mac Róich, a member of the Ulster royal family.
Section 2: Contact
Fergus: So that's what the other me you all know is like? I can't believe it...
Fergus: A brave and earnest man best described as “simple-minded” and “chaotic”?
Fergus: And on top of that, he's both a warrior who fights like a demon and a relentless womanizer?
Fujimaru 1: Yeah, it hardly sounds like you.
Mash: ...Do you think so, Master? I can kind of see the resemblance...
Fujimaru 2: Are you sure you're really Fergus?
d'Eon: I-I confess, I had the same thought. The change in his physique is even more drastic than mine...
Da Vinci: Hahaha. I understand how you feel,but our data doesn't lie.
Da Vinci: He is, without a doubt, Fergus mac Róich, one of the other Servants who went missing from Chaldea.
Da Vinci: That said, we still have no idea how he ended up like that.
Fergus: I'm not surprised: I don't know either. Still, I'm glad to know that I really did meet you all before, even if it wasn't the same me.
Fergus: That said, I don't understand why I was summoned. I mean, I'm still just in training...
Fujimaru 1: Do you enjoy training?
Fergus: Of course. I train to become a great warrior every day!
Fergus: That has nothing to do with me being royalty. Any Celtic man would do the same.
Fergus: Never mind what a long way to go I still have...
Astolfo: How 'bout girls? Like 'em?
Fergus: Wh-where did that come from? Well, um, I certainly don't DISlike them.
Fergus: It's just...I never know what to do around them. Personally, I'd rather train than talk to girls.
Fergus: Training is nice. It helps me turn off my brain and forget about all the trouble my brothers cause.
Fergus: I really like that it's so straightforward. What's more, I can see its results for myself.
Fujimaru 2: Do you like women?
Fergus: Wh-where did that come from? Well, um, I certainly don't DISlike them.
Fergus: It's just...I never know what to do around them. Personally, I'd rather train than talk to girls.
Fergus: Training is nice. It helps me turn off my brain and forget about all the trouble my brothers cause.
Fergus: I really like that it's so straightforward. What's more, I can see its results for myself.
d'Eon: ...Do you enjoy training?
Fergus: Of course. I train to become a great warrior every day!
Fergus: That has nothing to do with me being royalty. Any Celtic man would do the same.
Fergus: Never mind what a long way to go I still have...
Astolfo: Hey, hear that? Fergus, not knowing what to do around girls?
d'Eon: Indeed...It's quite shocking. I would never have expected him to be this way.
d'Eon: At least they both share their fondness for training.
d'Eon: I knew he couldn't have become the skilled swordsman he is on natural talent alone. He must have put in a lot of hard work during his youth as well.
Fujimaru 1: Maybe some goddess did this to him?
Mash: Parts of him are similar to the Fergus we know, but a fair amount is entirely different...
Mash: It's such a strange feeling. To be honest, I'm still not sure how to feel...
Mash: I'm not even sure if it's okay for me to be surprised or not.
Da Vinci: It's a bit like running into an old friend who's changed so much you barely recognize them.
Da Vinci: It's not necessarily a bad thing, but it's so different from what you were expecting that you don't know how to react.
d'Eon: That's rich, coming from you.
Mash: That does sound more like a reaction you'd provoke than one you'd experience yourself, Da Vinci.
Fujimaru 1: By the way, do you know Medb and Cú Chulainn?
Fergus: I feel like I've heard those names before, but I can't picture them. It feels like my memories are all hazy.
Fergus: There must be some things that the Fergus you're all familiar with knows that I don't.
Fergus: ...I'm sorry to be such a disappointment.
Fergus: For what it's worth, I can promise I'll do my best to improve and learn everything I can.
Da Vinci: (So, spurred on by his indignation at his own immaturity, he trains to overcome his own weakness. Yep. Sounds like Fergus. )
Da Vinci: So it seems this is essentially Fergus's past, younger self. Both physically, and in terms of his memories.
Da Vinci: But, much as his appearance, personality, and stats may be different, he is still the same Fergus mac Róich we know.
Da Vinci: So don't worry, it's safe to trust him. That said...
Da Vinci: I do wonder why he's manifested like this...
Da Vinci: Whoever it was must have gone out of their way to summon him from Chaldea before reverting him to his younger self.
Astolfo: Da Vinci, you do the brain stuff! We'll keep adventuring!
Mash: Um...yes. That's...a good idea.
Mash: I do wonder what's going on with Fergus, but our main goal is to explore Agartha.
Mash: Our exploration may lead us to some explanations about what has happened to him, after all.
Fergus: Exploring this world, huh? That sounds great to me.
Fergus: I also think my being here probably has something to do with the abnormality that Fujimaru is looking into.
Fergus: In which case, I believe it's my duty to help resolve it.
Fergus: I can see that the two of you are both beautiful and brilliant warriors.
Fergus: I'm afraid I won't be any help in combat at all, compared to you two.
Fergus: But I do have confidence in my stamina. I can run anywhere you need me to!
Astolfo: Ah, this must be the super stamina I've heard about. I guess that Fergus must have had this going for him even as a kid.
Astolfo: Our Fergus always says he uses that stamina to keep goin' all night long...
Fergus: Keep going all night? I thought nighttime was for sleeping. Is that a riddle of some kind?
Fergus: If there's a better way to use my stamina at night, I'd love for you to teach it to me!
Astolfo: Uwaa, don't look at me like that! I can't pay off this awesome setup when you're so innocent like that!
d'Eon: At ANY rate, we may be on an expedition of sorts, but we still have yet to find a clue of any kind.
d'Eon: Astolfo's instincts worked in our favor, as it was thanks to him that we found Fergus the hero.
Fergus: Fergus...the hero...
Fergus: I-I don't deserve such an honor, especially from one so beautiful as you. May I ask your name?
d'Eon: Please call me d'Eon. Delighted to have you with us.
d'Eon: At any rate, we know now that an adventurer's intuition is not to be discounted when exploring dangerous new territory.
d'Eon: So let's not run around wasting our time. For the moment, I suggest we follow Astolfo–
d'Eon: Hm? What's that?
Fou: Fou fou!
Astolfo: See!? I knew we'd find something here!
d'Eon: It's a town...or rather, a campsite.
Fujimaru 1: Might as well go in.
Fujimaru 2: Ahoy there!
Mash: J-just like that!?
Mash: There's no telling what you might find here. Please be careful, Senpai!
Woman A: ...
Astolfo: Hey, it's a person. Hiya!
d'Eon: A-are you insane!? Mash JUST told us to be careful!
d'Eon: With all my experience as a spy, there is never a case where running up to someone you've never met to say hello would be wise!
Woman A: ...?
Astolfo: Aw, come on. Being friendly never hurt anyone!
Astolfo: Y'know...she is kiiinda staring pretty hard at us, huh?
d'Eon: ...Yes. Yes she is.
Fergus: I can't really see much from here...I wonder why she's wearing such revealing clothing...
Woman A: ...!? A man!?
Woman B: What? Did you say a man?
d'Eon: ...! There's more of them coming out of the tents!
H：Woman C: A man! A man!
D：Woman D: A stray man!
Fujimaru 1: A stray? As in a stray dog?
Fujimaru 2: That's kind of a weird thing to say.
Mash: Look out! They're arming themselves and preparing to attack!
d'Eon: Damn...It seems we have no choice but to fight! Fergus, take care of Master!
Fergus: I should be able to hold my own against these opponents, but...I'm afraid I can't use my sword against women.
Fergus: But don't worry. I can still make certain to keep Fujimaru safe!
Mash: Can't use your sword against women? Is that a Celtic geis!?
Fergus: Not at all. It's my own, very personal problem. I'm worried about inadvertently harming them...
Fergus: Still, I should be able to deflect their attacks, so I can at least protect Fujimaru.
Astolfo: Oooh! So, you don't know how to handle them, right? No problem! d'Eon and I got this!
Mash: No sign of hostile reinforcements. The battle is over.
Da Vinci: Given those women's fighting style, clothing, equipment, and determination to fight to the last...
Da Vinci: They must be Amazons.
Da Vinci: You might have seen them before, in other places.
Fujimaru 1: The ones with the feathers...yes...
Fujimaru 2: Amazons...Phoenix Feathers...Ow, my head.
Mash: Are you all right, Senpai!? Did you remember something distressing?
Astolfo: I think I must've used a buncha those...or maybe I could get them for myself...
d'Eon: What a coincidence, I believe I did as well. Such is to be expected for a noble knight like myself, I suppose...
Mash: At any rate...
Mash: If these women really are Amazons, then we've fought them many times before.
Mash: Alone, they aren't much of a threat, but in a group, well...
Astolfo: Maaan, why didn't they just surrender? I wanted to hear what they had to say.
Fergus: ...That was incredible. You completely dominated your opponents through sheer skill rather than brute force.
Fergus: Winning like that takes a lot of patience. I'm especially impressed that you were able to do so against female warriors.
Fergus: Personally, I couldn't contain my surprise at seeing women fight with such ferocity.
d'Eon: ...? I don't understand. Don't the Celts have female warriors as well? I seem to recall one in particular who was especially terrifying.
Fergus: Well, I have heard that there are lots of strong female warriors in the area surrounding Ulster.
Fergus: But I've never even met one, let alone fought one.
Fujimaru 1: (Guess he hasn't met Scáthach yet. )
Fujimaru 2: (Guess he hasn't met Medb yet. )
Fergus: That's why I'm still not used to wielding my sword against women.
Fergus: I guess it's hard for me to see them as enemies. Whenever I try, it's like my arms freeze up.
Astolfo: Hmm. Ah well, maybe that's just something that happens when you're young.
Astolfo: Anywho, since you don't have any trouble on defense,I think we'll make you Master's full-time protector.
Astolfo: As for attacking female enemies...Eh, you just gotta get used to it! Don't worry, it'll work out!
Fergus: Thank you...I'm sorry for the trouble.
d'Eon: Now then, we may not have been able to get any information out of the Amazons themselves, but we do know more after investigating this camp.
d'Eon: For one thing, it appears that this was a hunting outpost.
d'Eon: And those beasts we encountered on the plain earlier must have been running away from them.
Astolfo: Ohh, now I see. I guess they must've been hunting them for food?
d'Eon: Definitely, yes. We have yet to see anything like a farm so far, so they must primarily hunt for food.
Fergus: (Wow. I could barely defeat just one of those boars, but they were going out to hunt them. They really are fearsome warriors. )
d'Eon: Furthermore, it seems they have been taking their game somewhere else after making the kill.
d'Eon: You can tell from the wagon tracks heading away, down that road. And where do you think that road leads?
Fujimaru 1: Another town, I guess.
Fergus: Indeed. But even if it isn't a town, it is still very likely that we find another populated area.
Fujimaru 2: Our next destination.
Da Vinci: Yeah, I don't see much point in just going on a nature walk. Heading where there are people will be a better way to get answers.
Da Vinci: We need more information on this world, and on the Demon God Pillar. What's more...
Da Vinci: ...if there are other Servants like Fergus here who disappeared from Chaldea, we might be able to get information on them too.
Fou: Fou, fou!
Astolfo: Wooow, that's some pretty snazzy footwork for such a little guy! It's not over yet though! Check this out!
d'Eon: (Sigh) I suppose we had best think of them as an advance reconnaissance team. In the meantime, Master, let's stay alert and continue on our way.
Mash: I agree. It's good to have Astolfo taking the initiative, but I'm also glad that someone as cautious as you is there too, d'Eon.
Mash: Anyway, please be careful, Senpai. We still don't know why the Amazons attacked you without warning.
Mash: Likewise, we don't know if you'll find other kinds of people up ahead, or simply more Amazons.
Mash: After all, we still know almost nothing about Agartha.
Fujimaru 1: Got it. I'll be careful.
Fujimaru 2: Don't worry, I'll keep my guard up.
Mash: (For that matter...I'm still wondering what that one Amazon meant...
Mash: ...when she called Fergus a “stray man”...)
Section 3: At the Amazon Village
Fujimaru 1: It really is a town.
Astolfo: Master, keep your head down before they see us!
Amazon A: Hurry up! You really are a good-for-nothing scum, aren't you!?
Man A: Aah! I-I'm sorry...Please, no more lashes!
Amazon A: Don't you dare tell me what to do. You belong to me! You're in no position to talk back OR make requests!
Man A: Aah! Aaah! I-I'm sorry. P-please, forgive me, mistress!
Amazon B: Hmph, pitiful. It must be hard, keeping such useless livestock, hm?
G：Man B: Y-yes, mistress. Me, I understand very well that I'm only to do what I'm told and nothing more.
F：Amazon C: Take that, and that! Mmm, the whip is fine and all, but there's nothing like punishing the little beasts by hand.
F：Amazon C: I can't get enough of–Eh? Damn, looks like I killed him.
F：Amazon C: Well, no matter. I'll just get another spare out of the cage. I'll need a sturdier one for next time.
d'Eon: Wha...What's going on here!?
Fujimaru 1: It's a town of nothing but Amazons...
Fujimaru 2: It looks like...men are being kept like livestock...
Astolfo: ...Yeah. The only people walking around freely are Amazons.
Astolfo: The men are all being dragged around in chains...They're prisoners or something...
Fergus: I've never seen women so strong and fearsome before. And it looks like they control the whole village.
Mash: Now I finally understand what that one Amazon meant by “stray man. ”
Mash: It seems they've taken the men here as property.
Mash: That must be why it was so surprising for them to see one walking around of his own volition.
Da Vinci: Aha. So that's why they panicked and attacked you when they saw Fergus.
Da Vinci: I mean, I can only guess whether it was the sort of concern they'd have about seeing a dangerous wild animal out of its cage...
Da Vinci: ...or if they were hoping to slap some chains on him and bring him back here for whatever THIS is...
Fergus: I doubt they saw me as anything like a wild beast. Sad as it may be, I can't imagine myself being capable of harming them.
Astolfo: Heh, that's funny. The Fergus we know would be awfully excited to face Amazons!
Astolfo: He'd probably just say something like, “Every woman is beautiful in her own way. Is there a problem? ”
Fergus: I-I see...So this other me wouldn't even flinch in this situation. I admire his fortitude.
Fergus: I hope I can be like that one day. I wonder what it would take...
Fergus: I guess it all comes down to my daily training regimen. Maybe if I double the number of Celtic push-ups...
d'Eon: At any rate, it is abundantly clear that we cannot blend into this environment.
d'Eon: Ordinarily, Amazons may not pose much of a threat, but with these numbers, matters are different.
d'Eon: We should make our way out of here for now before anyone–
F：Amazon C: What the!? Hey, this man isn't in chains!
Astolfo: Eee, they found us!
H：Amazon D: Has another wild man fallen from the sky!?
F：Amazon C: No, wait. Look how the others with him are dressed. They could be scouts! Be careful!
d'Eon: Damn. They just keep coming.
d'Eon: There really is no worse scenario for a spy on an infiltration mission to end up in.
d'Eon: If one of my subordinates or colleagues ever asked me what to do if they found themselves in this situation...
d'Eon: ...I would tell them to shout “Vive la France” at the top of their lungs and swallow their cyanide capsule.
Astolfo: Heeey, we're not spies right now. We're Fujimaru's proud Servants.
Astolfo: We can take 'em! We can take a town full of Amazons with our eyes closed!
d'Eon: But of course. That much goes without saying.
Astolfo: Fergus, you stick to keeping Master safe again!
Fergus: Okay...Sorry I can't be of more help...
Astolfo: Come on, let's do this thing! If we lose, it's curtains–I mean, chains for all of us!
Astolfo: Course, knowing me, I bet I'd look super good in chains! But let's not find out!
d'Eon: Well, that takes care of that.
Mash: You still have hostiles in your area. Please stay alert and–
Mash: W-wait! This reading!
???: ...What is all this commotion?
Amazon: ...! You...
Amazon: Your Majesty!
Astolfo: Majesty? As in queen? And, her aura...
Fou: Fou! Fooou!
Mash: ...A Servant! Senpai, that woman there is a Servant!
Amazon: Your Majesty, I–
???: Enough. I am no fool.
???: I can see for myself that more rabble have come to taint our bravery, our honor.
???: You there. Who are you?
Fujimaru 1: I'm Fujimaru.
???: Oho? I applaud your candor.
???: Then I would have you tell me who sent you and where you came from.
???: The decadent water city? The dazzling city of trash? Or are you with that band of stray dogs that have been yapping so ceaselessly of late?
Fujimaru 1: ...Huh?
???: You dare refuse to answer a queen!?
Astolfo: Hooboy, she just did a backflip off the handle!
d'Eon: She seems a little young to be a queen...but she's certainly imposing enough.
d'Eon: She is clearly accustomed to standing above others and issuing commands. She's nothing like my queen, though.
Fergus: So this is a queen! She may not look the part, but even a young oaf like me can sense her regal bearing!
???: Don't look the part? Of course not. That is precisely why I appear this way.
???: No matter. Who you are is of no consequence. My task remains the same.
???: You must pay for this humiliation. You WILL pay for this humiliation!
???: You rabble are impudent but fortunate, and yet so terribly unlucky.
???: Rejoice, for I shall show you your place with mine own hands.
???: You can regale Hades with the tale of your bravery once I have sent you to the underworld!
Mash: Wha...! The enemy Servant is about to attack! Watch out for the Amazons she's brought with her, too!
d'Eon: Wh-what a vicious weapon! All we can do is try to avoid it!
Mash: Master, I've determined her class! She's a Berserker!
Astolfo: Makes sense, given how ridiculously powerful she is!
Astolfo: No fair! She can talk properly! But, I guess there are lotsa other Berserkers like that back in Chaldea!
Berserker: ...Up to this very moment I thought you no more than immature halfwits.
Berserker: You should be proud to have survived this long against me, heroes. Your bravery and prowess are commendable.
Berserker: ...With the exception of that craven weakling who refused even to defend himself.
d'Eon: Don't worry, Fergus. You made the right choice.
d'Eon: I am sorry to say that as you are now, you would not stand a chance against her.
d'Eon: Now, speak plainly, Berserker. Do you wish to insult us, or compliment us?
d'Eon: Say whatever you want, but I have always been a proud Heroic Spirit.
Astolfo: Yeah! I may be immature, but you better believe we've ALL got the brave hero thing going on.
Astolfo: I'm Astolfo, one of the Twelve Paladins of Charlemagne! Wait, what's the difference between a paladin and a hero again?
Berserker: You are indeed strong. That much we approve of.
Berserker: I've changed my mind. You shall no longer pay for our humiliation with your lives.
Berserker: Instead, we shall take you as slaves.
Fujimaru 1: As in, clap us in irons?
Fujimaru 2: As in, throw us in cages?
Berserker: Of course. The men among you in particular should serve us well by providing us with strong offspring.
d'Eon: You speak as though the men are no more than tools for reproduction.
Berserker: Of course, fool...I speak of them that way because that is exactly what they will be.
Berserker: Naturally, your cooperation is not a factor.
Berserker: You will be told where to go, what to do, and you will be made to obey, one way or the other.
Da Vinci: Sheesh, talk about living up to an Amazonian cliché.
Da Vinci: Fujimaru, now that we know what the enemy is up to, you should make a temporary retreat.
Da Vinci: Even if they don't mean to kill you now, you REALLY don't want them catching you.
Astolfo: Yeah, but what exactly are we supposed to do!?
d'Eon: There are a great number of foot soldiers here, and more coming as we speak!
Fujimaru 1: Things are going from bad to worse!
Fujimaru 2: We've got to come up with a plan!
Berserker: You have no chance. Your only choice now is to accept your fates and submit to our control, or–
Amazon: Your Majesty...!
Berserker: What is it? Can you not see that I am busy?
Amazon: It's him! He's just appeared in the neighboring town!
Berserker: ...! I see. That means...Then...
Berserker: I'll kill him! Killhimkillhim! KILL HIM! KIIILL HIIIM!!!
Berserker: At last! I'll kill him! I'll finally kill him! Without fail! Again and again! I'll smash him, crush him, squash him, break him, strangle him! I'LL RIP HIM APART!!!
Berserker: ...Let's go. You'll see! I'm coming to kill you now, now, NOW!!!
Amazon: Y-your Majesty! Wait! What do we do about them!?
Amazon: Dammit! Half of you, go with the queen! The other half, stay and capture them!
Astolfo: Well that escalated quickly. She just went full Berserker and ran off!
Astolfo: What's going on!?
d'Eon: I don't know, but we now have far fewer foes to deal with, and no Servant. Now's our chance!
Mash: I'll do everything I can to help you out! Please make it through this, everyone!
Astolfo: Weeell, they're not super tough! Buuut there's a crapload of 'em, even though half left!
Mash: Please keep going, Astolfo. You're almost in the clear!
Fergus: Damn. I just can't bring myself to slay a woman. That said...
Fergus: I might be the king of Ulster someday. I refuse to be branded a coward or weakling!
Fergus: I'll never give up. I'll keep on training, and I'll keep making progress, no matter what!
???: Aha! I thought I heard someone talking sense!
Mash: I'm picking up a new reading in your vicinity! Please be on your guard, Master!
d'Eon: ...? What's that sound!?
???: Don't worry men, we outnumber them! Attack!
Amazon: It's the Resistance! Of all the times for them to show up!
???: You guys still alive?
???: If you are, then don't give up. As long as you don't, most things'll work out in some form or another!
Astolfo: So, uh...I guess this is the cavalry or something?
d'Eon: We don't have time to fret. Master, we should cooperate with these men and take down the remaining Amazons!
Astolfo: Phew, finally.
Mash: ...Confirmed, the battle is now over. The threat the Amazons posed appears to have been neutralized.
Mash: Of course, there's now the matter of this mysterious group of men.
???: Hm? That sounded like the voice of a pretty young girl to me. Long-range transmission, is it? Huh...Handy.
Fujimaru 1: Thanks for saving us.
???: Ah, don't worry about it. We had business here anyway.
???: The only reason you all got what you wanted is because you didn't give up on getting it.
???: No point in pretending otherwise. You ought to be proud about what you fought for.
Mash: That may be true, but, um...may I ask who you all are?
Fujimaru 2: Who are you guys?
Mash: An Amazon referred to you as the Resistance...
???: We never set out to call ourselves that, but if that's what they're calling us, I guess that's what we are.
d'Eon: Look, Master. They're freeing the imprisoned men.
Fujimaru 1: So you're fighting back against the Amazons?
???: It's not just them. This whole place has become extremely unfriendly to men in general.
???: If we're fighting back against anything, I guess it's the very status quo of this land.
Mash: It seems we may have finally met someone who can tell us more about what's going on here.
Mash: Master, I suggest we start by asking this man some questions.
???: Fine by me, but let's change venues first.
???: Neutral zone or not, this is still Amazon territory. We'd best escape before that terrifying queen of theirs shows.
???: Besides, we need to tend to the men we just freed. Come on, let's head back to our hideout.
Fujimaru 1: Hideout, eh...I like the sound of that.
Fergus: Me too. I must admit, I love that it sounds like a place filled with meat and liquor.
Fujimaru 2: Where is this hideout?
???: What, you don't think I'm actually gonna tell you that smack in the middle of enemy territory, do you? Don't worry, I'll show you the way.
Mash: Very well then, we'll be glad to take you up on your invitation.
Mash: But before we do, I have to make sure: you're a Servant too, right?
???: Yeah. Rider. All I know is that I was somehow summoned here. I'm afraid I can't tell you my True Name.
Mash: ...It's all right. I understand why you'd be wary of us, since we've only just met.
???: Oh, no, it's not that at all. I mean I really CAN'T tell you what it is.
???: For some reason, I don't have a single memory of my life.
???: Naturally, I can't use my Noble Phantasm either. All I know is my class.
???: So just go ahead and call me Rider.
???: Rider of the Resistance, if you like. That'll do for now.
Section 4: Resistance
Astolfo: Whoa, what is this place!? One minute we're in an endless, narrow cave, and the next...
Fujimaru 1: Paradise!
Fujimaru 2: A winter wonderland!
Mash: Senpai, I understand you have a fondness for Bing Crosby...
Mash: But please keep your reports accurate and relevant. Otherwise, you'll confuse my analysis!
d'Eon: What a beautiful place. It's so evocative of spring. And this smell...Are those peaches?
d'Eon: It's like the utopia described in old eastern legends.
Da Vinci: Ah yes, the one described in “The Record of the Peach Blossom,” written by the poet Tao Yuanming around the 5th century.
Da Vinci: An old Chinese story about a hunter who goes through a hole he finds in a mountain.
Da Vinci: On the other side, he discovers an ethereal paradise.
Rider: Call this place whatever you like. What's important is that this is our hideout.
Rider: It's in a valley surrounded by rocky cliffs on all four sides. Undiscoverable from the outside.
Rider: The walls are pretty much impossible to climb, and the only way in or out is that cave we just went through.
Rider: We were very lucky to just happen across it. It's the perfect place for our hideout.
Boy: Hi, Rider! I heard the last operation was a huge success!
Rider: I don't know if I'd go that far, but we did all right.
Boy: Come on, you freed all the men in that town, right? How's that not a success?
Rider: Haven't we gone over this before? It's about the war, not the battle.
Rider: Modest victories are certainly good enough for me. What matters is that we keep moving forward, even if it's just one small step at a time.
Rider: That is how you can always be sure to get where you're going.
Boy: ...Yes, sir!
Boy: But I still want you to take me along to the next battle. I promise to do my best!
Rider: Haha. All in good time.
Mash: ...I see you're greatly admired. I feel like you gave some really good advice, too.
Rider: I'm just doing what comes naturally, amnesiac that I am. Don't read too much into it. That said...
Rider: I've got a soft spot for enthusiastic youngsters like that. They really do shine brilliantly when they put their minds to something.
Rider: But I digress. Come on into my shack here, and I'll tell you what I can.
Fergus: I don't suppose we could also impose on you for some food?
Fergus: I can keep going for a long time, but when I get hungry, I end up eating everything in sight. It doesn't have to be the best food, just a lot of it.
Rider: Sure, help yourself to the peaches. For some reason, they grow all the time here, so we never run out.
Rider: You grow sick and tired of having nothing but peaches after a while, but at least we don't have to worry about food here in the Resistance. Haha!
Rider: So...Rayshifting, Chaldea, Heroic Spirits, and mankind, huh...
Rider: Sounds like very important stuff. Okay, I think I've got a handle on your story now.
Fujimaru 1: Great. These peaches are yummy, by the way.
Fujimaru 2: Tell us aboutum, can I have another peach?
Fou: Fou, Fooou! (Munch, munch)
Fergus: Yes, they're delicious. They're sweet, juicy, and very filling.
Astolfo: We haven't finished the official Heroic Spirits' Top Ten Sweets list, so I can't be SUPER certain...
Astolfo: ...buuut, I can say for sure, way more sure than a certain sly teenaged Servant I could say...
Astolfo: ...that these peaches get a solid fiiive stars! Yep! Mmm!
Mash: Everyone, I understand how you feel–and honestly, I'm a little jealous that I can't have any myself–but please, we need to focus!
Mash: First of all, we need to go over everything Rider told us!
Da Vinci: Agreed. Let's all make sure we're on the same page here. They can listen and eat, I'm sure.
Da Vinci: Point the first: there's no exit to the surface.
Rider: None that we've found so far, anyway.
Rider: North, south, east, west, up, down, left, right...Everywhere we've looked, there's been nothing but earth and more earth. No one has found a way out.
Mash: That prompts an obvious question. If there's no way in or out...
Mash: ...how did all the Resistance members get here?
Mash: Everyone looks and dresses so differently, and even seems to be from different eras, so I can't imagine they grew up here.
Rider: They didn't. Every one of them I've talked to says pretty much the same thing.
Rider: They say a hole suddenly opened up underneath them, and the next thing they knew, they were here.
Rider: Near as I can tell, it sounds like something's abducting them from the surface and sending them here.
Rider: We've seen men rain down from the sky on a few occasions ourselves.
Rider: There doesn't seem to be any sort of common factor in where they come from, either. They drop in from all over the place as far as we can tell.
Da Vinci: Perhaps they have some sort of trap that uses a teleportation spell...
Da Vinci: ...and that's what's bringing these men to Agartha. But why?
Mash: What can you tell us about the Amazons?
Rider: I can't speak to the specifics, but they look to be somewhat like us–like Servants.
Rider: At least inasmuch as they suddenly appeared down here for some reason. Call it a hunch.
Da Vinci: So the Amazons most likely wound up here the same way, and have been abducting men from the surface...
Da Vinci: It feels like there's some sort of connection to be made there...Hm?
Astolfo: Oh, hiii! You're that boy we saw earlier. What's up?
Boy: Sorry to interrupt you and your guests, Rider!
Rider: Don't worry about it. What's the matter?
Boy: It's those monsters again. We're doing our best, but there's too many! Can you help?
Fujimaru 1: Monsters?
Fujimaru 2: I thought this hideout was supposed to be safe.
Rider: Like I told you, it's a valley surrounded by high rocky walls. Nothing can get in here from the ground except through that cave...
Rider: ...but sometimes, winged creatures that can fly over those walls end up wandering in here.
Rider: On that note, I'd better go do some pest control. Would you all mind giving me a hand?
Fergus: I'd be glad to. I'm only a fledgling, so I may not be of much help, but I'll do whatever I can.
d'Eon: I agree. I believe we should do all we can to put these people in our debt.
d'Eon: Let's go, Master!
Da Vinci: That takes care of that.
Da Vinci: By the way Rider, let me ask you this purely in the hopes of jogging your memory:
Da Vinci: Have you ever heard the name “Leonardo da Vinci” before? One of a kind genius? World-renowned beauty?
Rider: ...No, sorry, can't say that I have.
Da Vinci: Ouch. I know that's just the amnesia talking, but it's still a bit of a shock.
Da Vinci: Ah, I'll ask for the hell of it: how about Michelangelo? You haven't heard of him, have you?
Rider: Sorry, but no.
Da Vinci: Whew. Well, that makes sense. He may be a good friend, but he's still just an artist.
Da Vinci: There's no way he could be more famous than a true Renaissance woman like myself.
Da Vinci: I mean, I already knew as much, but it never hurts to check.
Da Vinci: Still...Hmm...
Da Vinci: If he's dressed like that but hasn't heard of Mikey, he really must've lost his memory...
Da Vinci: Ahem. At any rate, based on the way you fight, your equipment, and your outfit...
Da Vinci: I thought you might have been from my own time. Too bad we never met when we were both alive, huh?
Rider: Indeed. Believe me, I wish someone could just tell me who I am...
Rider: But, nothing I can do for it now. Just have to take things one day at a time.
Da Vinci: If you remember anything, let me know. If I learn something about you, I may be able to look you up in our database here in Chaldea.
Fujimaru 1: An old man with a beard and amnesia, huh...
Fujimaru 2: He kind of reminds me of someone...
Mash: (I know, Senpai...I can't help but remember the Archer of Shinjuku either. )
Mash: (But, this Rider isn't like him. )
Mash: (He's got proper human allies who all look up to him, and he's doing a great job in leading them. )
Mash: (...And yet...)
Mash: (...Why am I still anxious about him? )
Mash: (Is it just that Shinjuku's events left so much of an impact on me that I can't help but feel there's more than what he's telling us? )
Da Vinci: All right, let's get back to the matter at hand.
Da Vinci: Let me make sure I have all this correct. First of all, you said there are three primary regions, right?
Rider: That's right, but it's not quite the whole story. I think I'd better get more specific.
Rider: There are three major cities here, each of which is in the center of its respective region.
Rider: Each city is ruled by a different Servant, and are at constant war with one another.
Da Vinci: Oho, Servants, hmm? That leads perfectly into my next question.
Da Vinci: Do the names Helena Blavatsky or Francis Drake ring any bells?
Da Vinci: They are Servants who may have ended up there themselves.
Da Vinci: I don't suppose either of them is ruling one of those cities?
Rider: Sorry...I'm afraid I don't know that either. The ruling Servants here keep their True Names hidden.
Rider: I really can't say one way or another.
Da Vinci: I see. Figures it wouldn't be that easy.
Da Vinci: There's still so much we don't know. Are they hiding their True Names? Did they forget them like you did?
Da Vinci: ...Are they even here in Agartha at all?
Rider: Returning to the matter at hand: there are three powers vying for control over this place.
Rider: Four, I suppose, if you count those of us in the Resistance.
Rider: Incidentally, the borders between each Servant's territory are not quite clear. That is not counting those of us living in the space between territories...
Rider: ...The various powers fight each other daily in an endless cycle of gaining and losing ground.
Fujimaru 1: So then, that queen we met earlier...?
Fujimaru 2: Tell us more about these Servants.
Rider: Sure thing. But I'd say you know about one of them now, hm?
Rider: We were fortunate to just miss her, but it seems you had the ill luck to run into her yourselves. It's a wonder you lived to tell the tale, really.
Rider: She is the queen of the Amazons, the ruler of the golden city in the jungle, which is one of the three major cities of Agartha.
Rider: We call her the Berserker of El Dorado, after the Amazons' capital city.
Rider: She and her people are the most aggressive of all the major powers down here...
Rider: ...and also the most numerous.
d'Eon: Yes, we've experienced their aggression firsthand. Peaceful talks had no appeal to them.
Fergus: That's for sure. To be honest, I found them rather frightening...
Astolfo: I don't blame you, considering how they started shouting “Stray man! ” the moment they caught sight of you. Anyway, who are the other two powers?
Mash: Yes, we would appreciate a complete overview of the area before we begin dealing with the details.
Rider: Another of the powers here resides in a fortress city so brightly lit at all hours of the day that it's known colloquially as the Nightless City.
Rider: I'm told it's ruled by a fearsome empress Servant, though I've never seen her myself.
Fergus: Another woman...
Mash: An empress, huh? The term “Nightless City” also reminds me of Kabukicho in Tokyo.
Mash: I wonder what sort of empress she is...
Rider: The last group resides in the City of Water, located on the bank of the great underground lake to the east.
Rider: Word has it that a female Servant rules that one as well.
Fergus: Another one!? I don't know what I'm going to do against so many female opponents...
Mash: (I can't imagine the other Fergus ever saying things like that! )
Da Vinci: Aha, now it all becomes clear. This whole place is dominated by women.
Da Vinci: It's not just that one Amazonian town. The entire societal structure of Agartha...
Da Vinci: ...is arranged so that men are oppressed like slaves no matter where they go. Am I wrong?
Rider: ...Nope, you're dead on. That's exactly what the Resistance is fighting against.
Rider: Every man that falls down here ends up getting captured and enslaved by the women.
Rider: Down here, they're treated as no more than pets, laborers, outlets for their owners' frustrations, or a means of reproduction. They have no freedom at all.
Rider: No one should be treated like that just for being born a certain way. That sort of world just isn't right.
Rider: I may be a worthless, powerless Servant, with no memory of my True Name or my Noble Phantasm...
Rider: ...but as far as reasons to fight go,that one's enough for me.
Fujimaru 1: Rider...
Fujimaru 2: That was elegant of you, Rider...
Astolfo: You think? Does that whole macho man thing really do it for you, Master?
Astolfo: You sure never looked at me with that kinda admiration...
d'Eon: (Sigh) Anyone seems elegant when it's you they're being compared to, particularly someone with the polar opposite Alignment to yours, like him.
Astolfo: Uwaa! That's not very nice!
Rider: So, what will you all do next?
Mash: Our goal is to find the Singularity that we believe is creating this world...
Mash: ...and destroy the escaped Demon God Pillar at the heart of it.
Mash: At the moment, all we can say for certain is that it's somewhere here in Agartha.
Da Vinci: So here we are, searching this place on foot inch by inch, or hoping some unusual signal gets picked up by our equipment.
Da Vinci: Anyway, if this is anything like the last times, the Demon God Pillar has probably assimilated the Servant acting as the Singularity's core.
Da Vinci: If so, it's most likely fused with one of those three ruling Servants.
Fujimaru 1: Then we'll just have to see for ourselves.
Fujimaru 2: It could also be someone we know.
Astolfo: Uh huh, uh huh. Now, let me ask you this: what exactly is the Resistance's ultimate goal?
Rider: What else? Defeat the rulers of the three cities and free the men enslaved in this world.
d'Eon: I see our goals align nicely.
Fergus: I agree. And not just because it means I can keep eating more of these delicious peaches!
Fergus: And certainly not because I have a strong desire to train myself to be stronger in combat!
Fujimaru 1: You're a terrible liar!
Fujimaru 2: He's just like the other Fergus, only not...
Astolfo: We might be few in number, but we're each worth a hundred soldiers. You can totally count on us!
Rider: Thank you. That will certainly be helpful since the three major powers greatly outnumber us.
Rider: So far, our only viable option has been small-scale guerilla warfare, so we'd be glad to have a few powerful warriors to bolster our ranks.
Boy: You got more people to join our cause, Rider? That's awesome!
Boy: W-wait, you've got the wrong idea! I wasn't eavesdropping, I promise! I came to give you a report and just happened to overhear your discussion!
Boy: Oh, right, the report! A bunch of dangerous pests have invaded our hideout and are swarming over our peach trees!
Rider: Hmm, I see. Well, we certainly can't afford to lose our main food supply, now can we.
Rider: All right, ready to show us what you're made of, friends?
Astolfo: You bet! Come on Master, let's go help them! We can get back to talkin' after we're done!
Astolfo: (Yaaawn) ...
d'Eon: It's all well and good that we earned some rest by joining in the battle to protect this place...
d'Eon: ...but I must admit, the warm light and sweet peach aroma together are making it hard to stay awake.
Fergus: Well, Mash and Da Vinci said they needed some time to study the new information we got, so maybe now is a good time for a break.
Fergus: Why don't we take a leisurely walk arou–Hm? What's that sound?
Resistance Men: Yah! Yah!
d'Eon: It seems Rider is teaching the men how to fight.
Fergus: Oh hey, training! Seeing that gets me in the mood to train, too!
Fergus: I wonder if they'd let me join if I sorta wandered their way while doing sets of Celtic jumping jacks!?
Astolfo: Uh, I'm pretty sure they'd let you join if you just asked them...
Rider: Good, that's it. Your swordplay is coming along nicely.
Resistance Man: Th-thank you, sir!
Rider: All right, this next part is very important. Listen up...
Resistance Man: (Gulp)
Rider: Forget everything I just praised you for. Don't ever let yourself believe you're a great swordsman.
Resistance Man: Huh?
Rider: Overconfidence kills on the battlefield. It gets you into battles you cannot win, and I don't want you throwing your life away like that.
Rider: No matter how much you practice, or how good I say you are, you will eventually find yourself outmatched. When that happens, you need to retreat. Period.
Resistance Man: So, it's really okay if I run away?
Rider: Of course. I don't know why I know this, but the big secret I learned about war...
Rider: ...is to keep fighting, without ever giving up. Do that, and you'll eventually win for sure.
Resistance Man: Huh? But, isn't that kind of a contradictio–Aah!
Astolfo: Whup, that kid just came flying in from another sparring match.
d'Eon: His opponent is bigger AND stronger, but no matter how much of a beating he takes, he keeps getting back up.
Fergus: His spirit is admirable, but he's so focused on the match that he's lost sight of everything else.
Fergus: I may be young, but even I know a thing or two when it comes to training.
Resistance Boy: D-dammit...(Huff, huff)...I can still beat you...I WILL beat you!
Rider: Stop that.
Resistance Boy: Ow! Rider...
Rider: You could stand to hear this as well. Take a good look at your opponent.
Rider: He's bigger than you. He's a better fighter than you. He doesn't have a scratch on him. Do you really think you can beat him?
Resistance Boy: ...
Rider: Charging at an opponent you can't beat will only get you killed. That's not fighting without ever giving up. That's just being bullheaded.
Rider: Telling an unbeatable opponent that you'll never give up no matter what is foolish.
Rider: It's tantamount to giving up on life, and on any chance at victory. The line between bravery and foolishness may be thin, but it is there.
Rider: So listen: no matter what the situation, the key is to keep thinking about how you can win, and to act accordingly. THAT'S what you should never give up on.
Rider: When you look at it that way, retreating isn't losing. A draw isn't losing. Hell, losing isn't even losing.
Rider: As long as you never give up on achieving your goal, it means you're making progress towards it. That is ultimately what matters most.
Fujimaru 1: ...I see.
Fujimaru 2: Positive thinking. I like it.
Fergus: It's not quite how Celtic warriors see things, but I can at least understand that position.
Fergus: He's not making them warriors. He's helping them go from civilians to proper soldiers.
Rider: If you need money, wait until you have enough. If you need people, wait until you have enough.
Rider: The important thing is not to lose when the odds are against you, and to win when you get the chance.
Rider: Now then, given all that, what do you think you should say to your opponent?
Resistance Boy: Um...“I'm pretty tired, so I'm gonna call it a day. I'll be sure to beat you tomorrow. ”?
Rider: Hahaha, you got it! Of course, if things look bad tomorrow as well, don't forget to say that again!
Rider: ...Hmm, it looks like you hurt your ankle. Well, we can't have you putting more strain on it, now can we? Here, I'll give you a lift on my shoulders.
Resistance Boy: Ah...Th-thank you, sir!
Resistance Man: Yeah...I get it now, Rider! The important thing is to never give up, use my head, and stay alive to win!
Rider: That's it. Just do your best, and don't push yourself too hard.
Astolfo: Wowie, he just oozes charisma, huh? No wonder everyone looks up to him, even with things so dire!
d'Eon: He seems to be an old hand at this. Perhaps he had experience leading men as a general or other military officer back when he was alive.
d'Eon: ...He also seems to know a lot about things besides combat.
Resistance Man B: Rider, we tried to till the soil to make a field, but we can't! There's too many big rocks in the ground!
Rider: What, are you serious? All right, dig the rocks up! We can use them as ammunition for our slings.
G：Resistance Man C: Rider, the men building the new house say they made a mistake in their calculations, and they won't have enough material left for the roof!
Rider: What, are you serious? No problem, we'll just have to make it a tavern instead.
Rider: That way, you can cook things inside without the smoke filling up the room, and we'll be able to enjoy the peach blossoms while we drink.
H：Resistance Man D: Rider, the wind blew the laundry we hung to dry into the mud! Now we don't have any clean shirts!
Rider: What, are you serious? Well then, we'll make today into a Mr. Agartha competition!
Rider: Everyone'll go shirtless to show off his muscles! The winner gets a week's supply of liquor all for himself!
Fergus: Does that mean it's training time now!? Great!
Fergus: I'm not very good at using my head, but I can definitely help out by using my muscles!
Fujimaru 1: He's like the ultimate positive thinker!
Fujimaru 2: Can't unsee Fergus as a pretty boy now...
Astolfo: I bet our Fergus was super into working out like this when he was young too.
Astolfo: Oh! Y'know, I've even seen him doing handstand push-ups in the halls at Chaldea.
Astolfo: Then he'll get up and do a He-Man pose and a smile REAL big any time a female Servant walks by.
d'Eon: I think that last bit isn't so much part of his training as it is him looking for an entirely different sort of workout...
d'Eon: At any rate, Rider is certainly a master of positive thinking.
Astolfo: He really seems like he practices what he preaches, too.
Astolfo: Me, I'm not much for the whole blood, sweat, and tears schtick, but maybe it's the thing to do here, huh?
d'Eon: I believe we can put that down to the difference between a free spirit like you, and people fighting for their freedom like the members of the Resistance.
d'Eon: Still, in a situation like this, the sort of positive thinking he embodies is quite encouraging.
d'Eon: He has that drive, that...je ne sais quoi that every leader needs.
d'Eon: I believe that is why even so powerful a force as the Amazons has been unable to squash the Resistance.
H：Resistance Man E: Rider, come quick! We need your help!
Rider: Now what is it?
H：Resistance Man E: We were trying to quarry some stone when the rocks started to just move! I think we've accidentally woken up some sleeping monsters!
Rider: Ah, I see...That's definitely no laughing matter. All right, let's go take care of this!
d'Eon: Good, I was just getting tired of this walk. Let's go help, Master!
Fergus: I'll come too. This should make for good training!
Da Vinci: Okay, now that we've studied the new information, and you've had some rest, let's discuss our next move.
Da Vinci: Which of the three cities and their respective rulers would you suggest we pay a visit to first, Rider?
Rider: Hmm...I think I'd go with the water one.
Rider: There's a whole host of reasons, but the most important is that we were planning to hit it next.
Rider: I've set up a small Resistance camp on the edge of their territory, so we can stop there to resupply.
Fujimaru 1: No arguments here. Let's do it.
Fujimaru 2: Getting to rest on the way sounds good to me.
Astolfo: Well if you're all set to attack this water city thing, then it'd make sense for us to go there, too!
Mash: By the way, Rider...
Mash: The names “El Dorado” and “Nightless City” for the other two cities both sound kind of familiar...
Mash: Does this water city happen to have a name like that as well?
Rider: Sure does. Did I not mention it before?
Rider: The city we're headed for next is called Ys, the City of Water. It's a decadent town that's built on the surface of the great lake.
Section 5: Heading to Ys
Astolfo: Phew, this place doesn't get any less weird the more we see of it! We're waaay underground, but we still got forests and big, open grassy fields!
Astolfo: Nooot that I'm complaining! This is much better than pitch-black darkness! Or lava!
Da Vinci: Speaking of pitch-black darkness, that reminds me: is there any sense of day and night here?
Rider: Yes. The ceiling is carpeted in luminescent moss, and its glow changes according to the time, so we have a twenty-four hour day just like the surface.
Da Vinci: Hmm. So that too is almost like it's been designed with humans in mind, eh.
Da Vinci: While I'm asking questions, here's another one:
Da Vinci: I know we're heading towards a camp that you built to help facilitate the attack on the water city...
Da Vinci: ...but why did the Resistance choose this city for its first point of attack to begin with?
Rider: That gets back to topography.
Rider: Agartha has a number of rivers, and each one flows into the great eastern lake where the water city is.
Rider: Simply put, you can sail upriver from that lake and get pretty much anywhere you want to go.
Rider: And that is exactly what the people of Ys are doing: using those rivers as a means of travel with which to attack their enemies and plunder supplies.
Rider: If we don't do something about them, there's no telling when or where they'll strike next. And so they're our highest-priority target.
Astolfo: Oooh, so they're like tropical river pirates of the high seas!
d'Eon: Urk! Everything about that was wrong! And to make matters worse, he doesn't even care!
Fergus: So, if we can capture Ys and take their boats for ourselves, we'll be the ones in control of the rivers.
Fergus: That makes sense. No wonder you chose this for your first point of attack.
Rider: Right. If we pull this off, it'll give us a significant advantage in the rest of our campaign.
Rider: The other three powers might have us hopelessly outnumbered, but that doesn't mean we give up.
Rider: Giving up is never the answer. That's why we keep moving forward, even if only a little bit at a time.
Rider: ...All right, we should reach the camp soon.
Rider: There it is.
Astolfo: Is it just me, or does somethin' seem a little hinky here?
Mash: Ah...Please be careful, everyone! I'm picking up some sort of sound!
Pirate Woman A: Haha, there you are! I knew we'd find you somewhere around here!
Pirate Woman B: One's got good posture, and another's got good arms! Not a lot of them, but what's there is pretty good!
Pirate Woman C: Go on, try and escape if you want. It's not like it'll make any difference!
Resistance Man A: Dammit! Don't let them scare you, men! Remember, if we lose here, we go back to being slaves!
Resistance Man B: Yeah! We already decided we weren't going to give up without a fight!
Pirate Woman C: What an idiot. Whether you run away or not, you were going back to being a slave...
Pirate Woman C: But you're no use as a slave if you attack us. Shame. That one could've been a decent workhorse.
Pirate Woman C: Oh well, I guess it's all right, since there's plenty of others to take his place!
G：Resistance Man C: Y-you–hrrng!!!
Fergus: They're slaughtering them! This is horrible!
Fujimaru 1: Let's go save them!
Fujimaru 2: We've got to stop them!
Rider: You curs!
Rider: You dare murder my comrades before my very eyes!?
Rider: You will pay dearly for that!
Pirate Woman A: Huh? Who're you lot? Resistance reinforcements? Haha, yeh sure took yer sweet time!
Pirate Woman B: Hey, check out those two! Whaddya think? They men, or women?
Pirate Woman B: If they're women, we'll just kill 'em off like usual, but if they're men...Check out those tight abs!
Pirate Woman B: I bet we could have a lotta fun with these two! I love making pretty boys like that squirm!
Astolfo: I-I think I just remembered something...Something from one of the other times I was summoned...
Astolfo: Gyah, never mind! Not gonna think about it!
d'Eon: Whether I am a man or a woman...
d'Eon: ...this will not end as you hope. On that, you have my word.
Pirate Woman A: There's only so much pleasure and plunder to go around, y'know! A girl's gotta get what she wants while the gettin's good!
Pirate Woman A: So have at it, girls! If you wanna have yer way with 'em, go for it! If you wanna kill 'em, knock yerselves out! This is our world, and we do what we want!
Pirate Woman B: “Take whatever you want, whenever you want it! ”That's the only rule we live by!
Pirate Woman B: That's the law of the great Pirate Princess, ruler of Ys!
Mash: Here they come! Everyone, prepare for battle!
Rider: Don't have to tell me twice. It may not be worth much, but these cretins stole my allies' dignity.
Rider: Their crimes are past forgiveness, but they can pay with their lives...for a start!
Rider: Looks like they ambushed us from a waterway we hadn't discovered. Guess our scouting wasn't sufficient.
Fujimaru 1: What will you do now?
Fujimaru 2: Are you going to go ahead with the operation?
Rider: ...Good question.
Rider: The survivors here and the relief group on the way can take care of this place. The rest of us will keep heading for Ys.
Rider: Now that we've reduced their numbers, they'll be spread that much thinner at their home base.
Rider: So we'll take advantage of that to sneak in and eliminate their leader.
Rider: It's the least I can do to avenge the men who gave their lives here.
Fujimaru 1: ...Got it. We'll go with you.
Astolfo: Okay, so our destination is still the same. Just no rest stop on the way now.
Astolfo: That means we'll have to be even more careful!
d'Eon: If you plan on infiltrating the city stealthily, my skills should be of some use.
d'Eon: We must stay sharp, Master.
Fergus: You know, there's something they said that's still nagging at me.
Fergus: Didn't they refer to the ruler of Ys as the Pirate Princess?
Fujimaru 1: That kind of sounds like Drake...
Mash: I agree. Her name keeps coming to my mind as well.
Mash: However, I can't imagine her ruling over a band of horrid pirates like this...
Da Vinci: Okay, that's enough. There's no point in speculating. We'll find out who this Pirate Princess is when we meet face-to-face.
Da Vinci: For now, I think it'd be best if we keep moving forward.
Fergus: Perhaps it's just my own naivete that I can't imagine a country ruled by a Pirate Princess.
Fergus: Still, that doesn't mean I should just ignore it. I have to see what it's like for myself.
Fergus: If I'm ever going to become king myself one day, I should know how other countries are run. It's like another kind of training.
Da Vinci: That's all well and good, but you know, you're only going to end up–
Mash: (S-stop that, Da Vinci! Don't go dashing his dreams while he's still young and hopeful! )
Mash: Ahem. Um, I think that's a very admirable,forward-thinking attitude, Fergus.
Astolfo: Are you sure you're okay? You're not holding yourself back too much, are you?
Astolfo: If you just GOTTA say, “I bet the lady pirates like to dock on the port side, if ya know what I mean,” or something else terrible like that...
Astolfo: We'll understand!
Fergus: I-I'm perfectly okay not saying anything like that! And no, I DON'T know what “dock on the port side” means!
Section 6: The Pirate Princess Lewdly Smiles
Man: (Huff, huff) ...
???: ...Haha. You were quite good.
???: No other man I've called up here has satisfied me like you have. They either tired out far too quickly, or completely lacked technique.
Man: R-really? I-I'm honored...
Man: (Yes! Since I was able to satisfy her,I don't have to worry about them killing me! )
Man: (When I first got dragged down here,I didn't know how I was going to survive. )
Man: (Who'd have thought all my philandering on the surface would pay off here? What luck! Just you wait! I'm going to claw my way up to the top. )
Man: (First, I'll use this woman to stay alive, then I'll–)
???: You've treated me to such wonderful sights this evening. Your lovely face as you latched on to my breasts like a baby.
???: Your lovely face as you closed your eyes and desperately pleaded for your own sweet release...
???: Your handsome face as you barely kept from screaming in pain...
???: Thank you. I had a wonderful time. This will be a lovely memory.
Man: N-not at all. I'm the one who should be thanking you. Please feel free to call on me again whenever–
???: There's just one last thing I'd like to see from you before we call it a night.
???: Do you know what that is?
???: The look of despair on your face as, even after all I've just told you, I end your life.
???: Ahh...What a lovely face that last one was. Oooh, it's getting me excited all over again.
???: Do you know what my only two teachings are?
???: Take whatever you want, whenever you want it...and do not want what you have taken.
???: Now that I own your body and your last, wonderful expression, I no longer need them.
???: I love how easy it is to dispose of things here in this city. All you have to do is consign whatever you no longer need to the waves.
???: Now then...I wonder what sort of man I'll take to bed next.
???: There's no shortage of possibilities or replacements. I'll always get to try someone new.
???: After all, you can't take what you already own.
???: So I'll keep on taking everything I don't have. Everything I desire.
???: And when I'm done, I'll throw it all away. What a wonderful way to live...
Astolfo: Well, so far so good on making it inside.
Fujimaru 1: I've seen this kind of city before...
Fujimaru 2: It really is a water city.
d'Eon: Indeed. It rather reminds me of Venice, what with all these canals.
d'Eon: Of course, compared to that charming city on the water–
Fergus: Yes. There's nothing charming about this place at all.
Rider: All I hear is angry shouts, tortured screams, and the din of gambling. The only smells are cheap liquor and blood. And–were those gunshots just now?
Fujimaru 1: Not to mention this place is filthy!
Fujimaru 2: Don't forget the trash. So much trash...
d'Eon: Indeed, there are many things that have been carelessly cast aside. Pulleys, swords, belts, blankets, wine bottles...
d'Eon: I can't even tell if they've been thrown out or not. Many of them seem as though they could still be used.
d'Eon: It seems as if they were thrown out after only being used once, not because they were no longer functional.
d'Eon: (I haven't seen such wasteful indulgence since my days spent among French nobility. I may have been accustomed to it then, but now...)
Astolfo: Sure feels like a place a buncha nasty, brutish pirates'd live! We'll be in for it if we get caught!
Astolfo: So, how do we get to this ruler lady anyway?
Rider: Taking the canals would seem to be the fastest way. Shall we steal a gondola? I think I can steer one.
d'Eon: No, that would draw too much attention. Let's save that for a last resort and start by trying to make our way in as far as we can go on foot.
Fujimaru 1: I hope we'll be okay with this many people.
Fujimaru 2: I just hope Fou doesn't stand out too much.
Fou: Fou, fou.
Astolfo: Yeah, cute creatures like him do tend to draw the eye. Even more when they're hangin' around cute people! Not naming names, though!
d'Eon: Moving inconspicuously and finding places to keep a low profile...
d'Eon: These are both key skills for any good spy. I think I had best lead the way for the moment.
d'Eon: Keep your wits sharp, and step lightly. Remember, we are right in the middle of enemy territory.
Astolfo: Got it!
d'Eon: Good to know, as I was chiefly speaking to you...
Mash: Since this is a covert operation, we'll refrain from any unnecessary transmissions on our end too. Please be careful, everyone.
d'Eon: Hold it. Is this...a tavern? There are many people inside. We need to make our way behind it, but...
Astolfo: Yeah, the windows and the entrance are totally open. If anyone comes out from here, they might see us.
d'Eon: Unfortunately, it looks like there is no other path forward. We'll have to wait for an opening and move quickly. Let's see what things are like inside.
Pirate Woman A: All right, last throw.
Pirate Woman B: Miss! Miss! Miss!
Pirate Woman A: Take aim, and...yah!
Pirate Woman A: Yes! Right in the eye! I win!
Pirate Woman A: Okay then, like the boss always says, I'm gonna take what I desire for myself. Hand over your favorite redhead, like you promised.
Pirate Woman B: I already had my fun with him anyway. Besides, we're not supposed to want what we've taken.
Pirate Woman B: I still hate losing, though......Hey, you! Get me a drink! And step on it!
A：Naked Waiter In Apron: Y-yes, ma'am...Ah!
Pirate Woman B: What do you think you're doing, you idiot!? Now my boots are all wet!
Pirate Woman C: Aww, what a waste. I was gonna bring him home 'cause he was a bit of a looker, but you just had to go and knock one of his teeth out.
Pirate Woman B: You know how you're s'posed to apologize, right? ...Lick it up.
A：Naked Waiter In Apron: Y-yes, ma'am...
Pirate Woman B: Come on, put your back into it.... That's it! Looks like you were thirsty!
Pirate Women: Hahahahaha!
Fergus: (Why would they do things like that? If they just wanted to vent, they would have only slapped him once. Or is the humiliation the whole point? )
Fergus: (...I don't understand. How could anyone enjoy things like that? There must be more entertaining things those pirates could be doing. )
Astolfo: Th-this is horrible!
d'Eon: Yes...but it's also our chance. Now that everyone is focused on that terrible spectacle, we can sneak in behind them.
d'Eon: This may be the best opportunity we get to move in without being spotted. However...
Fujimaru 1: It's also our chance to rescue those men.
Fujimaru 2: It also means they're open to a sneak attack.
d'Eon: You're saying that even knowing full well what our situation is, aren't you?
Fujimaru 1: I know. But I can't just turn my back on them.
d'Eon: ...Very well then. I will follow your orders, whatever they may be.
d'Eon: Are you okay with that, Rider?
Rider: Heh...If you insist, I guess I've got no choice. It's a question of morals, after all.
Rider: It may be risky, but we should be all right as long as we take care of them quickly.
Astolfo: Hehe. I'm glad you're my Master, Master. You're kind of a dummy, only not, y'know?
Fergus: There's no reason you can't be both a fool and a hero. Many of the greatest Celtic heroes have also been great fools.
Fergus: It's much worse to be a coward.
Fergus: ...To be honest, I find the way these women live appalling. I almost pity them.
Fergus: But I also can't turn my back on the men they're abusing like this. I may not understand why they do it, but I can still fight against it.
d'Eon: Then it's decided. Come! We shall finish this quickly!
d'Eon: Well done. We beat them before they could call for help, and luckily it seems no one noticed the scuffle.
Astolfo: Hehe, all thanks to our skill and good habits♪
Pirate Woman: Whew...Sounds like there was a hell of a party in here while I was taking a leak. What're you all–
Pirate Woman: What the...!? Who the hell are you guys!? Hey! We're under attack!
Rider: Dammit...Shut your mouth!
Fergus: The other pirates must have heard that! The whole town sounds like it's in an uproar now!
Astolfo: Ugh, just our luck that there'd be a pirate in the bathroom when this went down!
d'Eon: Maybe next time our habits should include clearing every room?
Rider: You can argue about that later. Right now we need to find a place to hide, or we're done for!
Fou: Fo...fo...fou...(Pant, pant)
d'Eon: (Huff) ...Okay, we should be able to lay low here for a while.
Astolfo: Man, it seems like the whole town's looking for us right now. It'd be nice if things died down soon...
Rider: Do you really think they will? After we snuck into their base and took out some of their allies?
Rider: ...So you DO understand the mess we're in. Good. Now, the question is: What's our next move?
Rider: We could make a tactical retreat and try again later, but even that won't be easy now.
d'Eon: Indeed. What's more, we are not far from the largest mansion in the city, where I presume we will find the pirates' leader.
d'Eon: That said, I don't see how we can reach the mansion given the current circumstan–
d'Eon: Who goes there!?
Girl: ...Hi there, [♂ mister /♀ miss]. You guys wanna go to that mansion? I can show you the way if you want.
d'Eon: A child...?
Astolfo: Huh. Well, I guess we shouldn't be too surprised that these pirates might have a kid, especially given how...randy they seem.
Fergus: Yes. This is the first proper girl I've seen in this entire city.
Fergus: Miss, I appreciate your offer, but we can't afford to stand out too much.
Girl: You mean you wanna play hide and seek on the way? Hehe, you're funny!
Girl: But that's okay. I know a secret path that goes right to the mansion from here!
Fujimaru 1: Our savior goddess! You deserve a head pat.
Girl: Hm? Heehaha, that tickles. But thanks! I like head pats!
Fujimaru 2: Our little girl hero! You deserve a candy.
Girl: Is that for me? Thanks!
Girl: Heehehe, yummy!
d'Eon: Master, you mustn't be so trusting! You need to be more wary around–
Astolfo: I'd rather have a Master that was too trusting than one who'd haul off and punch a little kid like this because [♂ he /♀ she] was wary of her.
Rider: I agree. The pirates may be our enemy, but kids are still just kids. They should be cherished as the treasures they are.
Astolfo: I know why you'd be wary, d'Eon, but my super keen senses tell me this isn't a trap!
Astolfo: She's just a kid, and I don't sense any hostility from her at all...
Fergus: I agree. This girl doesn't have any weapons. In fact, um...she doesn't seem to have much of anything at all.
Fergus: She seems rather destitute, despite having access to all these things that have been thrown away.
Fergus: N-never mind. I shouldn't pity her when I don't know her full situation.
Fergus: Anyway, we can't stay here forever. In fact, it looks like we should get moving very soon.
Astolfo: Why's that–Great, I should've guessed!
Pirate Woman: There they are! This way!
Rider: Stay out of sight, young lady! You can show us the way once we've taken care of this.
Rider: Besides, even if she does have an ulterior motive, she can't make things any worse for us!
Fujimaru 1: I know it's a hassle, but just knock them out.
Astolfo: Oh, yeah, good point. What with the kid watching and all.
Rider: Heh, that's going to be a hassle all right...But okay. After all, if you're going to go after something, you've got to have convictions!
Girl: Come on, this way! First you turn here, then you go through this hole...
Rider: Ow! Blast, my beard got caught.
Astolfo: Rrrgh, I can't quite get my butt through...Hnnngh...
Astolfo: Phew, made it.
Astolfo: Glad I didn't have to take off my waist armor and skirt.
Astolfo: What's up? Are you wishing you'd gone last so that you could've had a good excuse to push my butt...?
Fergus: N-no! Not in the slightest!
d'Eon: There doesn't seem to be anyone else around. It appears that really was a secret shortcut.
d'Eon: By the way, I suppose I should ask: Was your family among the pirates we were figh–er, playing with?
Girl: No, they weren't. It sure looked like fun, though! You were playing pro wrestling, right?
Fergus: Uh...that's right, we were playing pro wrestling. It was a lot of fun, and good training, too.
Astolfo: Aw man, you're just letting all kinds of stuff go by that the grown-up you never would, Fergus.
Astolfo: Y'know, for some reason, I kinda wish you would...
Fergus: I see...Now I'm even more interested in my grown-up self. In the meantime, I apologize...
d'Eon: Don't. You've done nothing wrong. Astolfo should know better than to expect you to say something like “bedtime wrestling. ”
Astolfo: Hey, I never gave any specifics. See d'Eon, you thought the same thing I did. Heehee.
Rider: ...We've come a fair distance now. How much longer until we get there?
Girl: Not much more! All you have to do now is go through the hole in the wall there!
Fujimaru 1: This is it then. Stay sharp, everyone.
d'Eon: I'll go first. The rest of you, be ready to move once I give the word.
Astolfo: Looks like we're in the clear. Okay, I'll go next...
d'Eon: ...Good, you're all here.
Rider: This must be the mansion's rear garden...I'm surprised we actually made it here without anyone seeing us.
Astolfo: Thanks, kid. We couldn't have done this without your–Huh? Where'd she go?
Fergus: That's strange. She isn't anywhere to be seen on either side of the hole.
Fergus: Perhaps she simply left once she'd finished showing us the way? ...She certainly was a smart girl.
d'Eon: ...I don't like this. It could be some sort of trap after all.
Rider: Agreed. I know we said we shouldn't be surprised at these pirates having children...but that doesn't mean it's not still strange.
Rider: Case in point, we've not seen a single other child like her anywhere else since arriving.
Rider: Seems a bit much to be just a coincidence.
Astolfo: But if this was all a trap, wouldn't it have sprung by now? I mean, we're already at our destination, right?
Fergus: That's true. Now that we've come this far, I think our only real option may be to head farther inside.
Fergus: Of course, this is the heart of a city where its populace constantly steals from one another...
Fergus: ...then discard their possessions as soon as they've grown tired of them. There's no telling what might be lying in wait for us in here.
Fujimaru 1: Okay...let's all be extra careful!
Fujimaru 2: Okay...I'm really starting to miss Mash!
Mash: ...I see. That does raise some questions about that girl.
Mash: But right now, we should focus on dealing with the ruler of Ys. I can definitely sense a different signal from the others there in that mansion with you.
Mash: Please proceed with caution.
G：???: My my...So you must be why my town is in such an uproar.
Mash: That voice!?
Rider: Huh? Don't tell me you know each other?
Mash: ...Drake is one of the Servants that disappeared from Chaldea, so I had considered the possibility that she could be here.
Mash: But...while this Servant may sound like her, her dress and manner of speech are very different.
Da Vinci: Mash, Fujimaru, I've finished analyzing her Spirit Origin pattern.
Da Vinci: It matches Chaldea's records. She is, without a doubt, Francis Drake.
E：???: I'm afraid you're mistaken. My name is Dahut. I am known both as the Pirate Princess and the Rider of Ys.
d'Eon: I suppose that makes sense given the name “Ys”...What in the world is going on here?
Fujimaru 1: Do you know something, d'Eon?
d'Eon: ...Yes. The tale of Ys comes from France, you see.
d'Eon: Perhaps you've heard it yourself, Master. It's an old legend from the Brittany region.
d'Eon: In brief, Ys was once the name of a city built on the coast.
d'Eon: It flourished as a haven of vice and immorality, but one day, either by an act of God or the Devil, the entire city was swallowed up by the sea.
d'Eon: Yet even now, it remains a hotbed of sin and malice untouched since the day of its submersion...So the legend says, at least.
Da Vinci: It also says that the daughter of the ruler of Ys...was a woman by the name of Dahut.
Da Vinci: As its princess, she set an example for her wicked citizens by stealing all sorts of things herself. It was her plundering that formed Ys's immoral backbone!
Fujimaru 1: But...That's just a legend...right?
d'Eon: Right. There is no record of Ys or Dahut ever having truly existed. They can't actually be real...
Dahut: Why, what an odd thing to say. I'm right here, and so is Ys.
Dahut: So, welcome. Welcome to my city of freedom and decadence, where everything and anything is permitted.
Dahut: I trust you're enjoying your stay?
Rider: I saw plenty of your pirates cruelly abusing their “pets,” and I can't say I found it all that enjoyable.
Dahut: Teehee. But now that you've seen it, surely you understand?
Dahut: Love. Pleasure. Violence. Inebriation. Hedonism. Gold. Silver. Beautiful fabrics. Delightful creatures. Adorable creatures. Their very lives!
Dahut: Here, nobody stops taking whatever it is they most desire.
Dahut: Surely you too must have thought that this is the happiest city in the world?
Astolfo: Happy? This city is OVERFLOWING with trash! Literally AND metaphorically!
Dahut: Ah, yes, I see. You have not yet learned my city's rules.
Dahut: Let me tell you. There are only two.
Dahut: Take whatever you want, whenever you want...and do not want what you have taken.
Fujimaru 1: Isn't that contradictory?
Dahut: Not at all. To put it another way...
Dahut: You are encouraged to take whatever you want without a second thought, but not to get too attached.
Dahut: That is all.
Dahut: Desire is supreme. You must never deny yourself what you want.
Dahut: What's more, not getting attached applies as much to what you've taken as to anything else.
Dahut: There is no point in holding on to something out of habit. Just let it go. No regrets. After all, someone else is bound to want whatever it is.
Dahut: In essence, my teaching is this: in each and every moment, think only of what you want, and take it.
Fergus: ...That explains why this city is overflowing with hardly-used junk.
Da Vinci: Hmm. So the concept of ownership in Ys changed to align with the notion that moment-to-moment desire is the ultimate good.
Da Vinci: It's a positively primitive, yet remarkably complete social system. It ensures that all resources will make their way to the hands of every one of its citizens!
Da Vinci: Of course, whether that's a good or bad thing depends on if you're more into hedonism or fairness.
d'Eon: ...Why would you teach such things?
d'Eon: Rules like that will inevitably lead to a chaotic, twisted mess, just as we saw on our way here.
d'Eon: You don't have to take in order to get everything you want. Isn't that how a sensible, just world should be?
Dahut: Why? Why, you say? It should be obvious.
Dahut: This is the only way that everyone can be happy.
Dahut: Those who follow my rules have created a city of pure momentary pleasure.
Dahut: And if, in each moment, everyone has attained their true happiness by taking what it is they want...
Dahut: ...then in those moments, it is as if everyone is happy, right?
Fergus: So she's trying to make all of her people happy by permitting anyone to take whatever they want?
Fergus: I'd never considered such a way of life before...
Dahut: And as long as I remain myself, that moment will last forever. Which means that everyone's truest happiness will as well.
Dahut: Ahh, this city is truly a utopia. Didn't you see for yourselves how all of my people were smiling?
Dahut: Nobody has to deny themselves in my city. They are free to take whatever they want.
Dahut: There is no need for them to be concerned with how others may feel. What could be better than that?
Rider: Yeah, your pirates were smiling all right. But they were the only ones.
Rider: This talk of happiness sounds nice, but it's deeply flawed.
Rider: What about the people you take from? The ones you treat like playthings?
Rider: How do you think those men feel when you rob them of their dignity...their very lives?
Dahut: ...How do I think those men feel, you ask?
Rider: You heard me.
Dahut: What a strange thing to say. Why should I care about that?
Dahut: I am the daughter of King Gradlon. The most beautiful, most noble princess in the world.
Dahut: As such, I have a right to take from those beneath me, and those I take from should be honored to have been of use to someone such as me.
Dahut: Surely they all understand that?
Dahut: Why would the men I kill after bedding them shed such wonderfully lovely tears?
Dahut: And that is just as true for my people.
Dahut: In other words, all of Ys is my proxy. As such, anyone used by a citizen of Ys should be similarly grateful.
Dahut: What else could there possibly be to consider?
Mash: ...Master, there's something I'm absolutely sure of now.
Mash: Well, I maybe shouldn't say “absolutely sure” since it's not based on hard data, but...
Mash: . . since I accompanied you to Okeanos, I feel I should say it anyway.
Mash: That is not Francis Drake.
Mash: It's true, Francis Drake was a pirate, and she took from those around her.
Mash: But she never once said it was right. She was completely aware of the evil of such an act.
Mash: Yet she had a sort of charisma and good cheer about her that let her shrug that weight off with a smile.
Mash: This woman is nothing like that. She doesn't even think there IS any weight to her actions.
Mash: Her evil is nothing more than a habit: just some normal behavior for her.
Mash: And so there's no way she and Captain Drake could possibly be the same person.
Rider: Drake, was it...? The name doesn't ring a bell, so she must not have been around back whenever I was alive.
Rider: Quite frankly, whether this woman is her or not does not matter to me.
Rider: The only question that I'm concerned with...is what we do about her.
Fujimaru 1: She's not the person I know. We have to defeat her!
Rider: Good. Then we're on the same page!
Dahut: Habit? You're wrong there. If anything, I'm in a constant state of flux.
Dahut: I attain happiness by sating my desires, then I cast that happiness away and begin desiring again.
Dahut: Taking is what allows me to ensure everyone's happiness is always shifting. It's the perfect way for us folk of the water to live our lives!
Dahut: That's why I can understand why you're here.
Dahut: You seek this happiness for yourselves. It is what you desire, and so you're here to take it from me.
Dahut: But...as I always discard all that I desire, the only thing I truly possess is myself.
Dahut: Which means...you desire me. You came here to propose.
Astolfo: I'd tell her she's waaay off the mark, but something tells me she's not the type to listen!
Dahut: Then yes, I accept. I will always desire people with love in their hearts who seek my hand in marriage.
Dahut: Very well, then! Come, let us go to bed and each take our desires from the other.
Dahut: ...Of course, it should go without saying that I will discard you once I am sated.
Dahut: That is the perfect happiness of the moment. Taking what we desire is how we obtain ultimate happiness.
Mash: Master's not going to your bed. [♂ He's /♀ She's] going to settle this right here and now.
Dahut: Here? Now? With our clothes on? While standing up? My...how passionate.
Fergus: ...I've never seen any woman as strong and terrible as her before.
Fergus: Maybe my future self will meet many like her in Ulster...
Fergus: ...but right now, she's the first woman of this sort I've ever encountered.
Fergus: Still...I can't help but shudder. I never met someone so strong and up front about her desires!
Fergus: ...I'm ashamed of myself.
Fergus: How can I still be incapable of battling such a fierce opponent simply because she's a woman!?
Fujimaru 1: Just protect me like usual. I'm counting on you!
Dahut: Well that's too bad. Some of you would have shined like gems with a little training...But I suppose you just aren't ready to handle me.
Dahut: Then again, there really are a lot of you, aren't there. Not even I could handle all of you by myself.
Dahut: So I shall call some of my maids to keep the rest of you company. Naturally, you're free to take them for yourself if you so desire.
Astolfo: Course she's got a buncha maids waiting in the wings!
d'Eon: We need to take care of them quickly, before any other pirates show up!
Astolfo: Yes! We almost got 'em all! Keep it up!
Dahut: My my, so impatient. Very well then, why don't we bolster our ranks a bit.
Dahut: Which of you are expecting?
Pirate Women: We are!
Dahut: Then birth them.
Pirate Women: We are!
Pirate Woman: Hngh...Aaah!
Fergus: Wh-what are they doing!?
Astolfo: Th...th...there's more of them now!
d'Eon: Impossible. It's as though they split apart like cells...creating clones of themselves!
Rider: So...this is how they reproduce.
Rider: Tch. I always knew there was something wrong with these pirates.
Dahut: ...This is just a way to match your numbers.
Dahut: If you want to be taken by the genuine article and experience something truly mind-blowing...
Dahut: All you have to do is close your eyes and come to me.
Dahut: Oh, but...this won't do.
Dahut: Now that you're proving difficult to acquire, I'm starting to desire other things!
Dahut: Quick! I must have it all! I must have everything I want!
Dahut: I want them so badly.
Dahut: I want a blue rose that has been watered with the blood of a thirteen-year-old virgin.
Dahut: I want the sweat dripping from the hands of a composer with a fatal disease as he plays the last beautiful notes of his career.
Dahut: I want the ashes of a book of romance whose cover has been coated with crushed jasper and human bones!
Dahut: Give them to me. Give me the joy that comes with getting what I desire.
Dahut: I'll throw away everything else I've ever wanted to get that!
Rider: You're a fool. Taking, discarding, taking, discarding...Do you really think that's sustainable?
Rider: The world's resources are finite. Eventually, everything runs out.
Rider: All that plundering and momentary happiness you love so much, it will end one day. It's only a matter of time until you've taken everything there is to take.
Rider: When that happens, you'll be left with nothing. A void that won't be filled even after it's consumed you.
Rider: When there's nothing left to take, the only thing you'll be left with is your own desire to do so.
Rider: And by then...it'll all be over. You can't keep the world going if all you do is take and never produce!
Dahut: ...I don't care about the world.
Dahut: All I want is for this city I was given to flourish forever.
Dahut: To have its people live out their lives in endless joy and pleasure.
Dahut: And for that, I'm proud to call myself its ruler.
Dahut: I don't care what rest of the world thinks of me. I don't even care if they call me a demon!
Dahut: I am Dahut. The daughter of Gradlon, and the ruler of Ys.
Dahut: I am noble by birth. I am the debauched witch who turned her back on Saint Guénolé!
Dahut: In spite of that, my people, who love the joy they take for themselves, see me as their ruler.
Dahut: Now come, my people, sing the praises of your lord. Let us lose ourselves in these endless pleasures!
Astolfo: Ew, the pirates just did that divide-y thing again! Gross! Now how're we gonna beat 'em all!?
Fujimaru 1: We'll have to take them out before they multiply!
Rider: Haha, well said!
Rider: I may not remember much, but there's one thing I still recall clearly.
Rider: No matter how hard things may seem...
Rider: ...as long as you know what it is you have to do, you still have a chance. So I'm not giving up.
Rider: Hell, not knowing when to give up is the best weapon I've got! So come on, [♂ boy /♀ lady]! Time to hold our ground!
Dahut: How is this happening? This isn't right...
Dahut: All I want is to take. Take!
Dahut: There's nothing wrong with wishing for my people's happiness...There can't be!
Dahut: No...I can't allow myself to be taken. That would be...That would be absurd!
Astolfo: Aw crap! We didn't finish the job! She's trying to escape!
Fergus: We have to stop her!
d'Eon: Dammit...There are too many of them! She'll get away!
Fujimaru 1: What was that!?
Fujimaru 2: Why is everything shaking!?
Pirate Woman: Lady Dahut! Emergency!
Dahut: What's going on here? Tell me everything.
Pirate Woman: It's...it's the floodgates! The city's floodgates have been opened!
Pirate Woman: Water is flooding in from the great lake and swallowing up the entire city!
Dahut: That can't be! No one should be able to operate them!
Dahut: I have the only key, and I keep it tightly locked up in...Wait.
Dahut: Don't tell me somebody took it while I was fighting?
G：???: Eheh...Ahaha! Ahahahaha!
G：???: You look a right fool, Rider of Ys!
Astolfo: That girl we met earlier!?
Rider: Tch, I'd forgotten about her. Now that we know how the pirates reproduce...
Rider: ...it clearly makes no sense for a girl like that to be here. Who is she?
Dahut: ...Empress of the Nightless City! Assassin!
Assassin: Oho, so you at least recognize my face, Pirate Princess. That puts you well above those simpletons.
Mash: That's the girl who showed you the way to the castle!? Running analysis...Complete!
Mash: Sh-she's definitely a Servant!
Astolfo: I had no idea...Since she's an Assassin, maybe she's got some sorta Presence Concealment kinda thing?
Da Vinci: So our plan to cut off transmissions while you were sneaking in backfired.
Da Vinci: At any rate, be very careful, Fujimaru.
Da Vinci: If what we've heard is true, she's one of the three rulers controlling Agartha!
Assassin: So, your name is Fujimaru. Your assistance has been invaluable.
Assassin: Thanks to you fools keeping the little princess here busy, I was able to get exactly what I wanted.
Assassin: As a token of my appreciation, I shall overlook your earlier transgression to my person.
Fujimaru 1: Oh right, the head patting.
Fujimaru 2: Oh right, the candy.
Assassin: Yes! But that candy was delicious! If you are still alive later, I will gladly accept another!
Assassin: Ahhh! What a relief! It's such a joy to know that you filthy pirates will soon be extinct...That this eyesore of a city will trouble me no longer!
Dahut: How...How did you do this!? No one but me even knew where the key was kept.
Dahut: The only other one who could possibly know is...
Assassin: Ehehe. Surely you already know the answer to that.
Dahut: ...Now I see. I was wondering where she went after leaving Ys...
Dahut: So your domain is where that Caster ended up!
Assassin: Did you really not know what one who left your pitiful nation might be thinking? Oh, I'm almost embarrassed for you, fool that you are.
Assassin: You and those silly Amazons are both the same. Attacking neighboring villages, engaging in crude violence day and night...What a waste.
Assassin: Why waste such energy to destroy an enemy state when a single key will suffice nicely? Hah!
Astolfo: Aaah! A flash flood!
d'Eon: It swallowed up Dahut! With her injuries, she will most likely perish.
Fergus: What about us!? How are WE going to survive!?
Rider: We've got to get out of here! I'm not going down with Ys if I can help it!
Assassin: Ahahahaha! Oh my, that won't do. It seems this form is given to laughter unbecoming for an empress.
Assassin: Let's try that again with elegance and arrogance, just like I practiced...Ehehe!
Assassin: Very well then, Fujimaru...No, I've already grown tired of that name.
Assassin: From now on, your name shall be Hun Yang, “Lost Sheep. ” You should be honored. It's a rather perfect name, if I do say so myself.
Assassin: After all, when you let me show you the way here without suspecting a thing...
Assassin: ...you resembled nothing so much as a foolish little lamb who didn't even realize [♂ his /♀ her] own wool was being shorn away.
Assassin: Then again, perhaps you would rather I call you [♂ mister /♀ miss], like I did earlier?
Assassin: I might consider doing so again if you prostrate yourself before me. I am in an extremely generous mood right now, after all.
Assassin: Speaking of which, allow me to extend you an invitation to my Nightless City. Assuming, of course, that you survive to visit it.
Assassin: You will be dazzled by how brightly my own city shines! That's a promise!
Assassin: In fact, I demand you come and pay me a visit there, so that you can see for yourselves just how wonderful it is. Good luck making your escape, Hun Yang!
Rider: Ha! Don't you worry, Assassin. I'll be sure to take you up on your invitation!
Mash: Please focus on escaping first!
Mash: Hurry! I'll do my best to guide you to safety!
Astolfo: (Huff, huff) That was too close...I'm all soaked, but I guess that beats drowning!
d'Eon: Ys is almost completely sunken now. It seems it lived up to its legend perfectly.
Fergus: I hope the men who were being kept prisoner there managed to escape too, but it was so sudden...
Rider: Well, that certainly spells the end of Ys as a threat.
Rider: If nothing else, they won't be robbing any more men of their freedom.
Da Vinci: That's true. At least one of the three powers ruling Agartha is gone now.
Da Vinci: What's more, we now know that the Rider of Ys was not the Demon God Pillar.
Mash: Right. Master pushed her to the brink of defeat.
Mash: Based on the other patterns we've seen to date, that would have caused her to reveal her true nature if she had secretly been the Demon God Pillar.
Mash: There is no reason the Pillar would have simply let itself be defeated like that, after all.
Mash: Some things about her are still puzzling, like her resemblance to Drake, but we can at least infer that it is not at all likely she was the Demon God Pillar.
Fujimaru 1: Well that's disappointing...
Mash: True, but we've also narrowed down the possibilities. Please don't let this get you down, Master.
Fujimaru 2: Then we'll just have to keep looking!
Mash: That's just like you to see the bright side, Senpai! I'll do everything I can to keep helping you too!
Fou: Fou fou!
d'Eon: Very well then, where should we head next?
Rider: We may as well take the Assassin up on her invitation. Besides, we've got to pay her back for using us.
Fujimaru 1: No objections here!
Da Vinci: All right then, our next destination is the Assassin's domain: the Nightless City!
Fergus: (...So this was Ys. A city that sought nothing but momentary happiness for its people, thinking of nothing but taking and discarding what they wanted. )
Fergus: (It was certainly evil. It was wrong. But...its people may still have been happy...)
Fergus: (Countless nations have been founded across history. Many of them died out, and some still exist today. )
Fergus: (I'll have to remember this evil city's governance as one of the possible ways one might rule–one with no class structure and no hierarchy. )
Fergus: (I'm sure this will serve as a sort of training for my own future as a king. )
Fergus: (There may not be much point in doing so, since I'm only a Servant, but I just can't help but think about it in those terms. )
Fergus: (I wonder what the next nation we visit will be like? )
Section 7: To the Nightless City
Rider: I can still hardly believe Assassin did something so...horrible.
Rider: I'm glad that the pirates are gone, of course, but did she have to sink the entire city of Ys to do it?
Rider: Who knows what we could have done with the place were it still around...What a waste.
Fujimaru 1: Like...make it into a tourist attraction?
Fujimaru 2: Like...make it into a water park?
Rider: Haha, I like that. Here I am focused on the present, and you're dreaming up plans for the distant future.
Rider: That's a precious talent in its own right.
Mash: Yes, that's one of Senpai's best qualities. No matter how dire things may be, [♂ he /♀ she] never fails to examine things at new and unusual angles!
Rider: Hah, and you never fail to deliver a truly earnest analysis, young lady. There is certainly never a dull moment with you two.
d'Eon: To give my own earnest answer...If Ys was still around, then yes, perhaps we could have made use of it as a marine headquarters of sorts.
d'Eon: I believe you said before that that lake is connected to nearly every river that flows across Agartha?
d'Eon: Given the incredible potential in what could have been transported over water as opposed to land, I cannot help but feel that destruction was a waste...
Rider: Still, there's no use crying over spilt milk. Or a sunken city, as the case may be.
Rider: I've already told my Resistance allies to explore the ruins of Ys. They should find several seaworthy vessels.
Rider: What's more, now that the pirates no longer control the waterways, we're on equal ground with our enemies.
Da Vinci: Rider's optimism is well-founded. The situation has certainly taken a turn for the better.
Da Vinci: After all, we've narrowed our pool of Demon God Pillar candidates from three to two.
Da Vinci: And we've reduced the number of powers in Agartha. It seems like things should be a good deal easier from now on, don't you think?
Rider: ...I'm not so sure. Those women aren't our only enemy.
Rider: Plenty of other threats remain, like those monsters that attacked our hideout.
Rider: And while I didn't mention this before, there's even a natural disaster of a sort to worry about. We can't go resting easy just because the pirates are gone.
Astolfo: Natural disaster? You mean like earthquakes? That IS a scary thought, especially down underground. I'd hate to be buried alive!
Rider: Depending on the situation, I'm afraid it could be even more dangerous than that. You'll just have to see what I mean for yourselves.
Rider: Words alone won't really suffice to describe it.
Rider: There's no telling when it might show up, and should you attempt to spot it yourself, it disappears without a trace almost immediately.
Rider: It is extremely dangerous, and to make matters worse, you cannot guard yourself against it.
Rider: It's impossible to see it coming, so the only thing you can do is run away before you're caught up in it. It is far worse than any mere natural disaster.
Fujimaru 1: ...?
Rider: Well, anyway, I'm just saying that there's still plenty of danger lurking around out here, so we can't go getting careless.
Rider: Just forget about this natural disaster thing for now. It's unlikely we'll be running into it anyway.
Mash: ...I'm afraid I'm still not quite following, but it sounds like the gist of it is “stay alert. ”
Mash: ...! Speaking of which, I'm picking up hostiles right in front of you. They look like wild animals!
Fergus: I see what Rider means about there being threats everywhere.
Astolfo: Heeey, at least they didn't surprise us! That proves Mash is sure staying alert! Way to go, Mash!!!
Astolfo: Master! I think Mash deserves a double-super-extra helping of praise while we're preparing to fight!
Fujimaru 1: I knew I could count on you, Mash!
Fujimaru 2: You look great in glasses, Mash!
Mash: Um, I really much appreciate the sentiment, Senpai...
Mash: ...but I feel terrible about getting praised like this while you're busy giving orders for battle!
Da Vinci: And done. You know, that might have been a nice warmup for what's to come.
Da Vinci: Rider, since we're approaching our destination, why don't you tell us about the sort of enemies we'll be facing in the Nightless City.
Rider: The women of the Nightless City are very reserved, unlike the Amazons and pirates.
Rider: They don't go around hastily attacking the other regions too much. They tend to focus on defending their own land.
Astolfo: Really? But their leader got pretty extreme at Ys. WAY extreme!
Rider: Indeed. Which is almost certainly why Dahut never saw it coming. I certainly wouldn't have.
Rider: For the Nightless City's ruler to infiltrate enemy territory all on her own, and take out the entire city with a single strike to its one weakness...
Rider: She is the very model of an Assassin in that respect.
d'Eon: It's also possible that she intentionally refrained from drawing attention to herself up till now in order for that plan to work.
Rider: True. But now that Ys is gone, there might be changes taking place across the entire Nightless City.
Rider: We should start with some careful reconnaissance.
Mash: Since we found Drake at Ys, albeit in a somewhat different form than usual, like Fergus...
Mash: ...at first I thought we might find one of our other missing Servants in the Nightless City.
Mash: But now, I'm fairly certain that whoever its ruler is, she didn't come from Chaldea.
Fujimaru 1: Dahut did say something about a Caster though.
Mash: That's true. She did mention that when speaking to the Assassin.
Mash: So it would seem safe to assume that the Nightless City is home to a Caster Servant as well.
Mash: In which case, there's still a chance that it could be Helena...
d'Eon: Regardless, our task remains the same. We'll never find out unless we go there ourselves.
Fergus: Come to think of it, Rider...
Fergus: Do you have any idea as to how many soldiers there are in this city? It would be nice to know what sort of enemy we're up against ahead of time.
Rider: I'm afraid not. As I said, they've mostly kept to themselves so far.
Fergus: I see. I ask because I still cannot make myself draw my sword against a woman.
Fergus: So I was hoping there might be some other sort of opposition there that would let even someone like myself be useful.
Fergus: I'm afraid that even after seeing firsthand in Ys what terrible enemies women can be, I still can't bring myself to do battle with them.
Astolfo: Well, y'know, maybe it's kinda like trying to get over your distaste for brussels sprouts. Can't just do it at the drop of a hat!
Rider: Hang on, I just remembered something. The Resistance once took in a man who escaped from there.
Rider: He was in such a terrible state we weren't able to get much from him, but the one thing we did learn...
Rider: ...is that the Nightless City is home to those...
Astolfo: Uh...how come you're pointing at the bodies of those beasts we just defeated?
Rider: He told us that the city is full of dogs. Though of course, I don't know if he meant real dogs, or something else altogether...
Section 8: The Brilliant Fortress City
Rider: All right, this is as far as I go.
Astolfo: Huh? You're not coming with us?
Rider: I kept too many of my men back at the hideout when we infiltrated Ys. I don't want to repeat that mistake.
Rider: If the Resistance had been ready to attack from the outside when it started to sink...
Rider: ...it would have been a hell of a kerfuffle, but we could still have saved some of the men there if only we'd been able to react accordingly.
Rider: This time, the Resistance and I will stand by near the Nightless City.
Rider: That way, we can come in and take control of the city after you've taken down the Assassin.
Rider: Alternatively, we can storm the place on your signal if something unexpected happens, like in Ys.
Rider: Either way, I'm afraid the Resistance needs me to lead them, so I have to stay behind. I'm sorry to make you face all the danger yourself.
Fujimaru 1: It's okay, I'm used to danger.
Fujimaru 2: It's okay, my friends here can handle anything.
Rider: Heh, well that's reassuring.
Mash: That's also one of Senpai's seven best qualities: [♂ he /♀ she] trusts [♂ his /♀ her] allies completely!
Mash: (And yet...something about working with this Rider makes me uncomfortable...Why? )
Mash: (We may not know who he is,but he fought valiantly alongside us back in Ys. )
Mash: (And there's no question that this is the best way of keeping Master safe. )
Mash: (So then, why do I keep wishing he would stay somewhere I can keep an eye on him? )
Rider: ...I might've said this before,but let me say it again:
Rider: If you must accomplish something, never give up, no matter the difficulties. As long as you persevere, a way forward will eventually present itself.
Rider: That may not mean much coming from a boring old man like me...but I can't help saying it anyway.
Fujimaru 1: Not at all. That was very wise.
Fujimaru 2: You can never hear words of wisdom too often.
Da Vinci: Okay Fujimaru, do you have your smoke bombs?
Da Vinci: Good. Then let's get started with our infiltration.
Da Vinci: As luck would have it, it's almost sundown–never mind how strange the idea of “sundown” is several kilometers under the surface...
Da Vinci: ...At any rate, now should be a good time to scale the castle walls.
Astolfo: Gah! This is the brightest deserted alley I've ever seen in my life!
d'Eon: This city is certainly no less of a surprise than Ys, however different...
Fujimaru 1: It kind of reminds me of Shinjuku.
Fujimaru 2: Their power bill must be nuts!
Da Vinci: The Nightless City...A legendary place from Chinese myth, much like Ys was a legend from French myth.
Da Vinci: The original name in Chinese can also be translated as “Nightless Castle”. However, the word for “Castle” actually means the outer walls of a city in Chinese.
Da Vinci: It's described in the Book of Han, but there aren't a lot of details about it. All we know is that the city was known for being very bright, even at nighttime.
Da Vinci: But given the image its name invokes, that expression came to be used for other cities that never sleep, like Shinjuku and Shanghai.
Fergus: What about that Assassin?
Da Vinci: Unlike Ys, nobody knew much about who the Nightless City's ruler was, or even if there was one at all.
Da Vinci: So I think it's entirely possible that she's a Servant with no relation to the city who just happens to be using it for her base.
Da Vinci: Much like how Rider is using the peach garden as his.
Astolfo: Good point. Whoever Rider is, I kinda doubt he has much to do with a Chinese peach garden.
Da Vinci: That said, the Assassin who destroyed Ys did seem to have a Chinese air about her...
Da Vinci: No, I shouldn't speculate when we still have so little information. Anyway, what's your next move?
d'Eon: I too believe we should learn from our mistakes at Ys. This time, we should take great pains to ensure this covert operation remains covert.
d'Eon: As such, we should start by gathering information with as small a group as possible.
d'Eon: Once we know more about the city itself, the threats we face, and where to find the Assassin, then and only then do we all move in.
Astolfo: Yup! Makes sense! I'd probably get lost in no time anyway!
d'Eon: Incidentally, Astolfo and I will be the ones to go and gather information.
Astolfo: Huh? Why me?
d'Eon: Remember the citizens of this city we saw on the way here?
d'Eon: As we suspected, this city is primarily inhabited by women...
d'Eon: ...but unlike the pirates of Ys and the Amazons, these women are quite diverse in dress and race.
d'Eon: The only thing they have in common is that they are all women.
d'Eon: Therefore, as long as we keep our wits about us, the two of us should also be able to pass as citizens.
d'Eon: Of course, if you insist, I am willing to go alone.
Fujimaru 1: That's too dangerous. You should go together.
d'Eon: True. Working as a team would let us deal with a much wider variety of challenges.
d'Eon: Much as I am used to working solo, this would undoubtedly be safer in case something goes wrong.
d'Eon: What's more, here in this city full of women, you are the only member of this group who would not stand out walking beside me.
d'Eon: Well...I suppose Master may be able to pass with the right outfit, but that is too great a risk.
Astolfo: I'm the only one, huh? Gosh, when you put it like that...
Fujimaru 2: You can do this, Astolfo. I promise.
Astolfo: R-really? I AM pretty cute, huh!? It's a liiittle embarrassing for someone to just blurt it out though!
Astolfo: Okay, I'll do it!
Astolfo: I was gonna let d'Eon handle the boring stuff and spend some “quality time” with Master here in this alley...
Astolfo: ...but if you're that insistent, I'd be a disgrace to the Twelve Paladins of Charlemagne if I refused!
Astolfo: Let's do this thing!
Fergus: In that case, I'll have to remain here too. I may not be able to help gather information, but I will at least keep this area–and Master–secure.
Fergus: I am young, I know, but I vow to protect Fujimaru with my life.
Mash: Well, Chaldea's staff needs to focus on monitoring Master above all else.
Mash: So if you two are going to go off on your own, I'm afraid we won't be able offer any help from our end.
d'Eon: Not a problem. That's why we're going together.
Da Vinci: But what about the Assassin of the Nightless City? She saw you both back at Ys.
Da Vinci: The other citizens here may not recognize you, but what will you do if she does?
d'Eon: A good point. We'll need some sort of disguise. That will not be a problem.
d'Eon: Fortunately, I snuck into an empty house on the way here and borrowed two outfits from its closet.
d'Eon: Naturally, I didn't have the luxury of choice in what I took, but since they were both hanging in the closet of a house belonging to an ordinary citizen...
d'Eon: ...they should let us blend in well enough.
Fujimaru 1: When did you pull THAT off?
d'Eon: Heh, any good espionage agent knows how to procure necessary equipment on-site. Though I can't say I'm especially proud to do so.
Fujimaru 2: Nice, Phantom Thief of the White Lily!
d'Eon: J-just to remind you, Master, my title is “Knight,” not “Thief”!
Astolfo: So is one of those outfits for me?
d'Eon: Of course. That is why there are two of them.
d'Eon: However, I only had time to base my selection on whether or not they would fit.
d'Eon: So I don't wish to hear any complaints about how your outfit looks. Here, take it.
Astolfo: Aww, come on, isn't it important to look good even in disguise? I mean, we don't wanna get hauled in by the fashion police, do we!?
Astolfo: Oh well, guess I may as well try it on.
d'Eon: Wh-why are you changing here!? Don't you realize Master is watching!?
Fujimaru 1: Don't let that stop you.
Fujimaru 2: (Puppy eyes)
d'Eon: Ugh, at least change in the shadows here! Don't the Twelve Paladins have any sense of decency!?
Astolfo: Hmm, well I can't really say as far as Roland's concerned. But overall, I'd have to say...nope!
d'Eon: That's nothing to be proud of! Ugh, come with me! I need to change as well!
Astolfo: Heeey! Where's the fire? I'm already naked anyway! Eep! My butt's cold exposed like this!
d'Eon: Oh la vache! What're these outfits!?
Astolfo: Mine's a sailor uniform!
Fujimaru 1: Uh, d'Eon...didn't you choose these yourself?
d'Eon: W-wait! I-I don't know what to make of this either, Master!
d'Eon: Please don't look at me like that!
Fujimaru 2: Astolfooou!
d'Eon: I don't know why you're shouting like that, but stop it, Master! You're scaring Fou!
Astolfo: You know, I think these are pretty spiffy!
d'Eon: I-I admit that I didn't look very closely when I took these outfits, so perhaps I shouldn't be surprised that they turned out to be like...this.
Astolfo: Let me ask you this: Exactly what sort of room did you take these from?
d'Eon: Nothing special. Just an ordinary bedroom with an ordinary chest of drawers.
Astolfo: Ohhh, a bedroom, huh? Well then, I bet you can guess what these outfits were doin' there, huh?
d'Eon: A-at any rate, I'm afraid I don't have time to go searching for different outfits now...
Astolfo: What's wrong with these? Far as I can tell, the only problem is that we're just too damn cute!
Fergus: I'm not certain that these outfits will fit in as you explore the city, but I AM certain that the other women here are dressed in all manners of ways...
Fergus: So, given that...
d'Eon: Yes, that's true...I've seen Western clothing, Japanese clothing, Chinese clothing, and all manner of fashions ranging from medieval to modern times.
d'Eon: In which case, perhaps we won't stand out too much after all...
Fujimaru 1: What's up, Mash?
Mash: Oh, uh, it's not a very big deal, but...
Mash: Well, there's one thing I'd like to make sure of.
Mash: (Whisper, whisper) Master, you're not sure of d'Eon's gender either, are you?
Fujimaru 1: All I can say is that d'Eon is d'Eon.
Fujimaru 2: No, I can't get a straight answer about it.
Mash: Right. So...given that, as much as I hate to ask you to do this...Could you maybe take a look?
Fujimaru 1: Those are some pretty fine lines, but...
Fujimaru 2: I think I see something there.
Mash: Me too. But of course, that doesn't prove anything definitely. That's what's making d'Eon so mysterious.
Mash: Perhaps Heroic Spirits can use skills to alter their physical appearance, or perhaps...Well, that's the only option I can think of myself.
Mash: I don't see a way to resolve this matter with any certainty. We could always ask, but I believe d'Eon would just smile and change the subject.
Fujimaru 1: Not every mystery needs to be solved.
Mash: Yes...I guess you're right. I'll do my best not to pay it any mind then.
d'Eon: Very well. Astolfo, we shall have to undertake the mission dressed as we are. And please, keep your wits about you and do not draw undue attention.
Astolfo: 'Kaaay.... Hmm, I wonder if I'd look cuter with my skirt hiked up more.
Astolfo: There we go.
d'Eon: That is exactly what I was just talking about! Do not adjust your skirt as you walk! Do you WANT the world to see what's under your skirt!?
Da Vinci: Well, things certainly are a lot quieter without those two around, aren't they.
Da Vinci: Still, their task will require not a small amount of stealth and skill. I think it would be best if we just waited patiently for them to return.
Fergus: A city populated entirely by women...To be honest, I'm finding this place a little disconcerting too.
Fergus: Though of course, I'll make sure to do everything in my power to keep Fujimaru safe if necessary.
Da Vinci: Still feeling out of place? The other you we know would almost certainly be thrilled to be here.
Da Vinci: If anything, he'd hate the idea of waiting around doing nothing in a back alley when there's a whole city full of women right in front of him.
Da Vinci: Either that, or he'd be on the edge of his seat waiting for something exciting to happen.
Da Vinci: And I don't mean an enemy attack. Although now that I think about it, I suppose a Celtic warrior would find that exciting too, for very different reasons.
Fergus: I see...So, what sort of exciting things would the Fergus you know be waiting for, if not an enemy attack?
Fujimaru 1: A half-naked woman running away from a bad guy?
Fujimaru 2: A half-naked woman falling from the sky for reasons?
Da Vinci: Exactly that sort of thing, Fujimaru.
Da Vinci: Even now, I can almost hear the other Fergus saying, “Well isn't this my lucky day!? Hers, too! ”
Fergus: That's awful. Do I really end up becoming a vulgar man obsessed with women as no more than sexual objects?
Fergus: No, that can't be right. I'm sure I turn out to be a proper warrior. She mentioned I would enjoy an enemy attack as well as...that other thing.
Fergus: Still, I can't help but worry...I'd better get back to training. That'll get my mind off this stuff.
Fergus: I think I'll start with some Celtic squats while keeping an eye on our perimeter. Pardon me.
Mash: Now you two have gone and made poor Fergus uneasy with all your teasing.
Mash: Don't worry, Fergus. You'll always be you, no matter what else happens.
Mash: Please don't dwell on it. It's okay to just be yourself.
Fergus: Thank you, Mash.
Fergus: But I like to train whenever (squat) I have a spare moment, (squat) so this IS me being myself (squat).
Mash: I-I see...You really do enjoy training, don't you.
Fujimaru 1: I don't get the appeal at all myself.
Fergus: I...don't think I'd say it's appealing. It's more...routine.
Fergus: I think it's really sort of separate from the things you do for fun, or because you like them.
Fergus: For me, training is something I do because I have to. I don't know if there's anything more to it than that.
Fergus: That said, I don't do nearly enough, which is why I'm still just a fledgling.
Fergus: But I can say that I know my stuff when it comes to more knowledge-oriented things.
Fergus: The druids who teach me are actually afraid of me now, since I learn everything they teach me so quickly that they keep running out of material.
Fergus: They say that if they let me, I'd end up making them talk all day every day, from morning to night.
Fujimaru 1: So you used to be a nerd when you were young!?
Fujimaru 2: Wow, you really CAN'T judge a book by its cover.
Mash: I guess everyone really does have their own backstory.
Mash: ...That goes for other Servants too, of course. This has been a good reminder of that.
Mash: Every one of them lived a full life and achieved something great as a hero.
Mash: Their pasts must be very precious to them.
Mash: Fergus, Astolfo, d'Eon...Galahad, who entrusted me with his power...
Mash: They all had their own lives before they became heroes. I'd love to hear more about them someday.
Da Vinci: Yeah. If you really give it some thought, it makes sense. Of course the Heroic Spirits written about in legends and myths would have led tumultuous lives.
Da Vinci: And since, by definition, their stories were exciting enough to pass on to future generations, there's not a boring one to be found in the bunch.
Mash: Right. So, Fergus, please don't feel as if you have to force yourself to do anything.
Mash: No matter what else may happen, as long as you remain yourself...
Mash: ...you'll become who you're meant to be.
Fergus: D-does that mean I'm doomed to become a man obsessed with his desire for women!? That's terrible!
Mash: Uh, n-no, sorry, I didn't mean it like that. I just meant that you will become a strong, charming warrior.
Mash: I do take issue with some of your future self's more overtly harassing comments...
Mash: ...but you still grow up to be a great man, almost like everyone's dependable uncle–Huh?
Mash: Sorry, I'm afraid I mistook this sound for your breathing, Fergus!
Mash: There's some heavy breathing approaching you now at what appears to be running speed!
Fergus: Heavy breathing!? C-could it be a half-naked woman after all...!? (Gulp)
???: (Pant, pant, pant)
Mash: It's a dog.
Fergus: Thank goodness...Yes, I'm genuinely glad that's what it turned out to be! Though that's not to say that I'm in favor of letting dogs run around without a leash!
Mash: Be careful. It appears to be hungry!
Fergus: Phew...Glad that's over with.
Mash: Well those things seemed to be dogs. Technically, anyway.
Mash: Perhaps those were some of the dogs Rider was talking about?
Fujimaru 1: I don't know...
Fujimaru 2: I don't think we're getting off that easy...
Mash: By the way, is everything okay there?
Mash: Everything happened so suddenly that I have trouble imagining you could've kept quiet.
Mash: To say nothing of how noisy combat usually is. Even in a deserted back alley like this, there's a chance that someone may have–
Mash: There! I can hear breathing and footsteps again! And they don't belong to an animal this time!
Fergus: C-could it be...!?
Man: Crap, I forgot to feed them! Where could they have gone!?
Man: Oh man, this is bad. Really bad! When those things get hungry, they go around eating other men!
Man: I think I heard something off this way!
Fergus: So it was a fully-clothed man. Well, I'm glad it turned out that way, too.
Man: What the...!? They're dead!? Wh-who are you people?
Man: Wait! You're not subjects of the Nightless City, are you?
Fergus: You seem to be...alone. That's lucky. Were you taken from the surface?
Fergus: We're allied with the Resistance that's trying to free the enslaved men. Maybe you've heard of them?
Fergus: If you help us, we may be able to rescue the men here in the Nightless City as–
Man: ...! Stop, stop! Now's not a good time!
Man: If I heard you, they must have heard you too. Which means it's only a matter of time until they come looking to see what happened.
Man: Oh god, what am I going to do? They're coming. They're coming with their billhooks and hammers!
Man: The merciless executioners will be here soon!
Astolfo: That's something kinda funny about this city, don'tcha think?
d'Eon: The lights are scattered so haphazardly...Not a thought is given to order. They may shine bright...
d'Eon: ...but their gleam lacks warmth and truth, in stark contrast to the gleam of Versailles.
d'Eon: ...Not that Versailles's gleam was perfectly righteous either.
d'Eon: It was designed to pile extravagance upon extravagance...to show that there was no greater place to be found anywhere in the world.
d'Eon: But this glow is quite the opposite. It has been expanded endlessly, signifying that it has ambitions well beyond where it is now.
Astolfo: Yeah, it does kinda feel like they've just been piling on lights for the sake of doin' it!
Astolfo: The lights are so bright you can't even read what the signs say, and there's so many of them that you're never sure where you're supposed to look.
Astolfo: And what's with that platform in the middle of the plaza? It has such an imposing presence, and it's as flashy as anything else here.
Astolfo: I bet I can figure it out if I reeeally wrack my brain! Hrrmmm...Oh! I got it! Maybe...it's a DJ booth?
d'Eon: I do not know what it is,but I know it is NOT a DJ booth.
d'Eon: (Although...why does the sight of that object put my heart so ill at ease? )
Astolfo: Y'know, chaotic as this place is, compared to Ys it's...surprisingly orderly?
d'Eon: Indeed. It may have something of a squalid luminescence, but it is a far cry from decadence.
d'Eon: It almost feels as though it is flourishing, which is rather strange considering how far underground we are.
Astolfo: Oh! These people are kinda weird, too. We really DON'T stand out much, even in these outfits.
d'Eon: Quite. While they do all appear to be largely around the same age, they are otherwise completely dissimilar in almost every respect.
d'Eon: And the real surprise...
d'Eon: ...is that there are men here.
Astolfo: Yeah, and it doesn't even seem like a big deal. Like, they don't even have any collars or chains on them. I wonder why they don't just run away?
d'Eon: They could be bound by some sort of spell. We'll have to talk to someone in order to find out.
d'Eon: However, speaking with one of the women may be dangerous. I think it would be best if we were to find a man who was by himself.
Astolfo: Yeah, but that's easier said than done when it seems like everyone is all...couply. They're even locking arms and everything. What's going on?
Astolfo: How come things seem so normal and so NOT normal at the same time!?
d'Eon: Wait. There's a group of two men and one woman over there. That seems odd. Let's follow them.
Man A: Are you cold, master?
Woman: I'm fine, thank you.
Man B: Here, master, use my coat.
Woman: Oh my, aren't you sweet.
Man A: What do you think you're doing? She said she wasn't cold, you brown-noser.
Man B: Hmph. It's not my fault you're too dense to read between the lines.
Woman: Now now, no fighting. I love you both equally. Mwah.
Woman: You have a lovely nose, and you have beautiful round eyes. You're both special. So no more fighting, okay?
Man A: You...You are too kind, master. Thank you!
Man B: You truly are too kind, master. I'm sorry for how I behaved.
Astolfo: Aw, c'mon. You gotta be kidding me with this reverse harem stuff! Look at them just smooching it up in public!
d'Eon: ...Shhh. The woman just told the men to wait for her over there while she goes to the bathroom.
d'Eon: Now's our chance to get in closer.
Man A: Ugh...This sucks.
Man B: ...?
Man A: I'm sick of buttering her up all the time...
Man A: You must be sick of it too, right? I don't know how much more of this I can take.
Man A: I'm going along with this 'cause I don't wanna die. I'm not a subject of this nation. And let's not kid ourselves, that's just her way of calling us “pets. ”
Man A: I got a wife and kid back on the surface. C'mon, she's never left us on our own before. Now's our chance.
Man A: ...Let's get out of here.
Man A: I've even heard there's a group called the Resistance outside this city. If we can just meet up with them...
d'Eon: Yes. Now we know how these men truly feel about living here. Let us go talk to them and find out–
Man A: ...Well? Say something. Aren't you fed up with–
Man B: (Deep breath) ...
Man B: Attention! I wish to make a report!
Man A: Wha...!?
Man B: This man would disturb the Nightless City's peace! He means to flee this city of harmony and light!
d'Eon: Something's not right here...Astolfo, stop!
Man B: Come quick! We have a criminal here! Bring Her Highness's justice down upon him!
Man A: S-stop that. Please, don't call them. You've got it all wrong. I was just kidding around...
Man A: Whatever you do, don't call for the Torturers!
F：Man: Oh god, what am I going to do? They're coming. They're coming with their machetes and hammers!
F：Man: Those merciless executioners will be here soon!
Fergus: I'm sorry, what are you talking about? Who are these executioners?
F：Man: Y-you mean you don't know? I'm talking about the Torturers!
F：Man: The Empress's official torturers who serve as the Nightless City's police force!
F：Man: If you know what's good for you, you'll hurry and make yourselves scarce! That's what I'm going to do!
Mash: I'm still not sure what he meant, but something is definitely headed your way. Be careful!
Torturer: ...Guard dogs 17, 18, and 19 confirmed dead. Likely culprits...spotted.
Torturer: They do not appear to be kept by any subjects. Rather, they appear to be intruders.
Fergus: Ugh! She stinks of blood and guts.
Fergus: In fact, she absolutely reeks of them!
Fergus: And of course, she's a woman...That huge weapon must be so unwieldy, given her physique.
Fergus: ...No, that's not the issue. This bloody stench isn't that of a warrior fresh off the battlefield.
Fergus: It really does bring to mind an executioner! This woman has almost certainly spilt the blood of others far beyond what could be deemed necessary!
Torturer: ...Rejoice. Her Highness is most lenient. Intruders though you may be, she will still grant you a chance to swear fealty.
Torturer: Now choose.
Torturer: Will you swear fealty after your judgment...or before?
Fujimaru 1: I'm thinking...after?
Torturer: Very well. Then let the judgment proceed.
Fujimaru 2: If I say “before,” can we skip the judgment part?
Torturer: No. Judgment is Her Highness's strictest law. None can avoid it.
Torturer: The penalty for killing a guard dog is the amputation of your four limbs, so that they may be fed to the other guard dogs.
Torturer: It is a perfectly just and ecological solution, as one would expect from Her Highness.
Fergus: This woman doesn't look so inclined to be lenient about amputating our arms and legs...
Fergus: ...She is clearly as frightful as her bloody stench implies. I cannot help but hate and pity her.
Fergus: I feel like women should be more, well...free, whether they're fighters or not.
Fergus: Take Dahut. She may have been evil,but she was proud of who she was.
Fergus: But you're not proud of anything. All I sense from you is self-admonition.
Fergus: As for that weapon of yours, you will never mete out your so-called judgment on Fujimaru.
Fergus: I may be young and inexperienced, but I will still protect [♂ him /♀ her] with every fiber of my being.
Fergus: Furthermore, even in death, I will never swear fealty to that Assassin. After all–
Fujimaru 1: He only goes for “well-rounded” women.
Fujimaru 2: Little girls don't do anything for him.
Fergus: D-do you have to say things like that when I'm trying to steel myself for battle!?
Torturer: So, you refuse to swear fealty to Her Highness! Your punishment shall now be far more severe!
Man: Y-you actually beat the Torturer? You guys are amazing!
Fujimaru 1: That's Celtic hero muscle power for you.
Fergus: Thank you, but all I did was defend against them.
Fergus: We could never have defeated them without Fujimaru's quick thinking and unerring orders.
Man: ...Sorry for hiding out on my own back there, but we're terrified of the Torturers.
Man: We could never hope to stand against them. Not after seeing one of their “shows”...
Mash: “Their shows”? Senpai, this is a good chance to talk to one of this city's inhabitants and learn more about what's going on here.
Man: Aah! Who said that?
Mash: Oh, don't mind me. I'm on your side.
Mash: Just think of me as a talking version of that cute fluffy animal over there.
Man: You lot sure can use some weird spells...
Man: Anyway, I'm just grateful you all defeated her. If you hadn't, I'd have been killed for letting dogs I was in charge of get away like that.
Man: After what you did for me,I'll help you out in any way I can.
Fergus: Wow, this is a real stroke of luck, having someone who can provide us with information show up like this while we were just waiting here.
Fergus: It makes me feel kind of bad about having d'Eon and Astolfo disguise themselves to sneak into town.
Man: So you have other allies here too? I just hope they haven't run into any Torturers themselves.
Man: Or that they haven't seen the Torturers at work...
Mash: I take it you're referring to the show you mentioned earlier.
Mash: Would you please tell us everything you can about this city, the Torturers, and what role they play here?
Man: Of course. First off–
Mash: What was that? I've got a bad feeling about this...
Torturer: ...Attention, subjects. This man has committed a crime.
Torturer: The crime of plotting an escape from our glittering paradise here in the Nightless City.
Torturer: The contemptuous crime of snubbing Her Highness's boundless mercy for her loyal subjects!
Astolfo: This must be some kinda show...
d'Eon: So that's what that platform in the plaza is for: a scaffold for public executions.
d'Eon: ...I don't like this.
Woman: Come now, don't feel bad. You did the right thing.
E：Man: Of course. I'm well aware that crimes must be promptly reported. I simply followed Her Highness's law.
Woman: Aww, you're such a good boy. I'll have to give you an extra special reward once we get home.
E：Man: ...You are too kind, master.
E：Man: (Dammit, I didn't do anything wrong. I just didn't want to die...)
E：Man: (If you want to survive in this city, you have to sell out anyone who might drag you down with them! )
Man: Please, don't do this. I'm begging you. Wh-what are you going to do to me?
Torturer: ...Your punishment has been determined. I will remove your fingertips.
Man: I-is that it!?
Man: I promise, I'll never even think about running away again. So please, spare me!
Torturer: ...Next will be the middle of your fingers. Then their bases. Your palms. Your wrists. From there, I will slice your arms into equally sized parts from your wrists up to your elbows.
Torturer: Then I'll do the same from your elbows to your shoulders. Next your legs, then your torso.
Torturer: Your body will be whittled down piece by piece from its extremities until you cease to exist.
Torturer: This slow shredding of the body is known as “Lingchi. ”
Torturer: It was extremely pragmatic of Her Highness to come up with this as the ultimate punishment.
Torturer: While the fine technique required to perform it makes it a slow method to learn...
Torturer: ...we Torturers are certain it will be regarded as the greatest form of execution known to humankind.
Torturer: You should be grateful to Her Highness. You have been given the gift of time to repent for your sins.
Torturer: Those who die by the guillotine or the rope are not so lucky.
Torturer: You are truly fortunate, save that you sadly will not have the opportunity to experience Her Highness's other innovative torture methods.
Torturer: I would have liked to see her kneeling torture or tree torture myself. Ah, so you already weep in regret.
Torturer: You might have had a chance to experience them, but now that your sentence has been determined, I'm afraid we don't have time.
Man: Oh god...Oh god...
Torturer: Then let us begin with the first cut: your fingertips.
Man: Oh god, oh god. AAAAAAHHH!
Woman: It started! Ahaha, wow, they look just like little shrimps! And look how much blood is spraying out too!
E：Man: Haha, yes, it's really...something...
d'Eon: ...I knew that platform inspired feelings of dread in me, even if I wasn't sure why.
d'Eon: But...now that I've seen this horrific display, I finally understand.
d'Eon: It is a scaffold used for executions. It may not have a guillotine, but it serves the same purpose.
d'Eon: Once, long ago...I failed to prevent such an execution.
d'Eon: When the guillotine was soaking France's streets in blood, I was not there. I was not able to return.
d'Eon: And so, I cannot help but think...“If only I had been there. ”
d'Eon: Had I been there, sword in hand, at the scaffold while Marie awaited her death at Sanson's hands...
d'Eon: Perhaps...I could have made a difference...
d'Eon: Yet here I am now...
d'Eon: And once again, I am unable to act!
Astolfo: ...Hey, d'Eon? You don't have to overthink this.
Astolfo: The important thing is that we're Servants now.
d'Eon: ...I know that. We are currently Heroic Spirits–ghosts from the past. I know that it is pointless to think of what could have been...
Astolfo: No, no, no. That's not what I mean at all.
Astolfo: I mean that we're Master's Servants. We're acting directly on [♂ his /♀ her] behalf, remember?
Astolfo: So all we gotta ask ourselves is: what would Master do?
d'Eon: But...we have a role to fulfill. An important one.
Astolfo: I know. And saving this guy prooobably won't help us fulfill it. But, oh well!
Astolfo: I say we give it a go! And if it all goes reeeally bad...
Astolfo: ...we'll both say we're sorry, okay?
d'Eon: You are a great fool, Astolfo. You really are.
Astolfo: Hee! Everyone's always saying, “Astolfo, stop leaving your brain at home! ” But I never do that! Honest!
d'Eon: I can see what they mean, dressed as you are now. Then again, I suppose I'm in no position to speak.
d'Eon: Perhaps that's why I'm compelled to do...this!
d'Eon: There is a crowd of people here. We must end this quickly!
Astolfo: Okay, I'll try!
Astolfo: Ow, she's harder than she looks!
d'Eon: It seems we have attracted reinforcements. This is not good!
Torturer: ...Who are you?
Torturer: Interfering with an execution ordered by Her Highness is a clear act of treason.
Torturer: The penalty for treason is death. You two will be executed after this criminal!
Astolfo: Evildoers may not know my name! If you must call me anything...call me Sailor Paladin! Friend of justice and kicker of butts!
Astolfo: And this is...
d'Eon: I-I have to do this too!?
d'Eon: Ugh, in for a penny, in for a pound. I am Maid Knight, friend of justice and defender of the innocent!
Fujimaru 1: Get all that, Mash? Let's show it to Blackbeard.
Astolfo: Uwaa, I just got goosebumps! Please don't! I just know he'll do something horrible with it!
Fujimaru 2: Get all that, Mash? Let's show it to Marie.
d'Eon: Wha...!? D-don't you dare! Th-that would be a clear breach of my portrait rights!
Astolfo: Wait, what are you doing here anyway, Master!?
d'Eon: And you, Fergus!
Fergus: We heard an ominous sound and thought we should come take a look just in case. I'm glad we're not too late!
Fergus: At any rate, this is horrible. Just horrible!
Torturer: There. You have been added to the list of today's executions.
Torturer: Once you are all dead, the names “Sailor Paladin” and “Maid Knight” will forever be engraved in the history of the Nightless City!
d'Eon: Just to be QUITE clear, those are NOT our real names!
Fou: Fou, fou!
Mash: I'm searching for a new place to hide as we speak. For the moment, please keep running, and don't stop!
Astolfo: I'm glad we managed to beat them, but they were weirdly...uh...tanky?
d'Eon: I've realized something after fighting them.
d'Eon: Remember those citizens–errr, subjects–that were gathered around? I believe they and the Torturers are fundamentally the same thing.
Fujimaru 1: What do you mean?
d'Eon: It's just my impression...
d'Eon: ...but I got an identical feeling from the Torturers we defeated as I did from the subjects.
d'Eon: Their only true difference was their weaponry.
d'Eon: Essentially, I believe that those serving as Torturers are chosen from among the women here.
Astolfo: Maybe that means this whole city could be a threat, kinda like Ys.
Astolfo: Anyway, at least we managed to rescue this guy from being executed. Now we just need to find somewhere safe and catch our breath!
Astolfo: Okay...I don't see any enemies nearby. I think we're good for now!
d'Eon: I'm so sorry for all this trouble...
Fujimaru 1: Don't worry. I'm not mad.
Fujimaru 2: You can apologize by wearing those outfits again...
Astolfo: Oooh, really? I didn't know you were into that sorta stuff, Master!
d'Eon: V-very well...If you insist!
Mash: Stop! Senpai was just kidding!
Mash: ...At any rate, a lot has happened since we came here, but...
Mash: ...thanks to you two, we did manage to learn more about this city.
Mash: In fact, given what things are like here, something like this may have been unavoidable.
Fergus: I agree. Now we know about the Torturers, the subjects, and what life is like for men here.
Fergus: Things may be different from how they were in Ys, but men are still treated as lesser beings here.
Fergus: They are controlled by an incredibly severe set of laws, and offenders are subject to extremely harsh penalties enacted by the Torturers.
Fergus: ...It's horrible. It's just as terrifying here as it was in the last city.
Fergus: I might never have believed just how terrifying it was if I hadn't seen it for myself.
Man: ...I don't blame you. There are no words to describe just how awful the Torturers are.
Astolfo: Oh hey, so who's this guy, anyway?
Mash: This man agreed to help us after we ended up saving him. He says he can no longer return to their society.
Man: You people really are incredible. I still can't believe you stopped a Torturer's execution and brought that guy back with you...
Injured Man: Hnghhh...
Man: He's missing a hand, and he's lost a lot of blood. We can try to staunch the bleeding, but I don't know if he'll even last the night.
Astolfo: I'm not sure that matters. Security's suuuper tight, so it won't be easy for us to leave.
Astolfo: Plus, we can't keep Rider and the Resistance waiting outside for us forever.
Fujimaru 1: You're right. We need to settle this today.
d'Eon: Indeed. We must defeat the empress,and free this entire city.
d'Eon: So I would ask you: Can you tell us where we can find the Assassin who rules the Nightless City?
d'Eon: You've been living in this city for some time now, right? You must have some idea where she could be.
Man: ...I'm afraid not. Men are the lowest rung of society here. We're no more than laborers for the women.
Man: The only reason you see us walking side by side is because the women have permitted it.
Man: If I'm being perfectly honest...we are just slaves.
Man: As long as we obey the law, men and women are on equal footing here. At least on paper.
Man: But basic human rights–things like free speech and such–all belong to women.
Man: In the court, two opposing men can expect a fair trial, but if it's a man and a woman, the law almost always sides with the woman.
Man: We have no real freedoms. What we eat, when we sleep...our lives are regulated. Naturally, we don't get to choose where we go or what we see either.
Man: So I really have no idea where the empress could be.
Fujimaru 1: At this point, we'll even settle for rumors.
Man: Rumors, huh...In that case...Well, I don't know if there's anything to it, but I've heard that there's some sort of underground facility here.
Man: But of course, no one, not even proper subjects, can just walk in. You have to be a Torturer or higher to even have a hope of that.
Astolfo: An underground facility exclusively for big shots? Sounds pretty perfect for a villain's hideout!
d'Eon: How would one go about entering this place? Where is it located?
Man: I-I told you, it's just a rumor. I have no idea how much of it is true, if anything. That said...
Man: I do remember a guy telling me how a Torturer suddenly showed up out of nowhere right in front of him. He thought he was gonna die.
Man: She wasn't just walking about, either. He said that one moment she wasn't there, and the next, she was.
Man: So, if that place exists, there might be a secret underground entrance to it near where that happened.
Fujimaru 1: ...Let's check it out.
Fujimaru 2: ...Then that's our only lead.
Astolfo: Did he tell you where this happened? If not, can you take us to this guy?
Man: As luck would have it, he really did die after he got reported for something else. What a sick joke.
Man: Still, I do have an idea of where it was. It's a place you're all familiar with too.
Man: It's behind the plaza with the execution scaffold you all just left.
Fergus: It's very quiet here now. Maybe that's because it's almost morning?
Astolfo: Huh, I would've thought the city would still be up in arms looking for us. Guess not!
Astolfo: If we knew things had quieted down this much, maybe we could've escaped after all.
Mash: Maybe, but that wouldn't do us any good. I believe this was the correct choice.
d'Eon: For that matter, things may have quieted down here because they thought we HAD escaped, and are concentrating their search outside accordingly.
d'Eon: I too believe this was the correct choice.
Fergus: So what do we do now?
Fergus: Do we wait around here for the Torturers to come out, or take the risk of looking around ourselves?
Fujimaru 1: There's no telling when they might come out.
Astolfo: Okay, he said it was behind the scaffold, right? Gotta be quiet now...
Astolfo: Y'know, I am pretty sure I've said it before, but this place SUCKS for covert ops!!!
Astolfo: There's sooo much light! It's impossible to sneak through the shado–uh, is it just me, or is it getting even brighter around here?
d'Eon: ...! Oh no. It's a trap!
H：???: Neehahaha! ...Uh, I mean, kehehehe!
H：???: Welcome to my castle, uh...oh yes, Hun Yang.
H：???: ...On second thought, I'm already tired of that name! From now on, I'll call you Shi Gou, or “Wet Dog,” since you evidently love to slink through shadows!
Mash: That's...the Assassin of the Nightless City!
Fergus: Oh no...Look around the plaza!
Astolfo: It's an ambush! We're completely surrounded!
Astolfo: But how did they know where we–Gyah!
Man: Heh...hehe. Don't blame me for this.
Man: If you have a chance to report someone, you take it, get rewarded, and raise your status as a citizen.
Man: That's what you have to do to survive in here. We don't have a choice.
Man: I mean, do you guys really believe you have a chance of bringing down the Nightless City? 'Cause I sure as hell don't.
Man: Once I heard you had other allies here with you, I thought I'd get a better reward if I sold you all out together, so I've just been biding my time.
d'Eon: I see. Now I finally understand what Rider meant.
d'Eon: This city truly is home to nothing but dogs!
Fergus: Dogs are a traditional symbol of bravery for the Ulster clan, but these are something else entirely!
Man: H-hey, you'll let me serve a high-class subject now, right!? I'll be guaranteed a safer life than I had before now, right?
Assassin's Voice: Indeed, you did well to inform us of our guests. You will receive your reward, as promised.
Man: Th-that's great!
Assassin's Voice: However, your manner toward your empress is quite insolent, and you clearly lack dignity.
Assassin's Voice: Take him away. Let's see now...twenty lashes ought to improve his poor attitude.
Assassin's Voice: And...some hot water torture to boil off one of his two faces while you're at it. Go on, be off with you.
Assassin's Voice: Now then, it would be unbecoming not to show my guests a proper welcome!
Assassin's Voice: As such, you are all invited to join me at my castle.
Fujimaru 1: So you'll let us into your underground facility?
Assassin's Voice: Hoho, an underground facility, eh. I suppose that isn't entirely inaccurate. But no, I simply keep it buried underground as a matter of course.
Assassin's Voice: It would cause my subjects no end of emotional turmoil if I were to constantly grace them with my noble presence, after all.
Assassin's Voice: It is the mark of a truly excellent ruler to erase all trace of herself, so as not to overwhelm her subjects.
Assassin's Voice: So I, of course, am no exception.
Assassin's Voice: However, now that we have guests to welcome, it won't do to have the Nightless City's true form hidden away like this. Behold!
Assassin's Voice: ...Hm? What's that, tactician? That would be both dangerous and pointless, you say?
Assassin's Voice: You fool! The point is to shock the living daylights out of them!
Assassin's Voice: They shall be so agape their eyes might well pop right out of their heads! I have to see that for myself!
Assassin's Voice: Now, let us ignore my silly tactician's advice and try this again. Behold the Nightless City's true form!
Fergus: An earthquake!? No...this is something else!
d'Eon: The scaffold is cracking open...Something enormous is rising up out of the ground!
Mash: I can't believe it!
Astolfo: I-it's a castle! It's even brighter than the rest of the city combined! Who thought THAT was a good idea!?
Assassin's Voice: This is the heart of the Nightless City, its brightest shining star. I call it Yaoguang Hall, or “The Hall of Divine Light. ” A perfectly fitting name!
Assassin's Voice: Kehehe! To be perfectly honest, I've been waiting for someone with spirit to show up, so that I could finally show it off!
Assassin's Voice: I can't make use of the mechanism I had put in place to make it appear like this on a whim, after all.
Assassin's Voice: Now then, I shall have a feast prepared in your honor while I await you in my castle! Feel free to frolic with my attendants as you make your way here!
Astolfo: Attendants? Oh crap, she must mean all the Torturers coming out of the entrance!
d'Eon: So we have Torturers guarding the gate before us, and Torturers surrounding our escape route behind us. What would you have us do, Master?
Fujimaru 1: That's easy: full speed ahead!
Astolfo: Now you're talking!
Fujimaru 2: We can't give up now. I say forward!
d'Eon: Agreed. I believe Rider would say the same if he were here!
Fergus: I'm glad to hear that. It's part of my geis to never turn down an invitation to a feast.
Fergus: Now that the Assassin has invited us to one, I was prepared to go all by myself if you had declined.
Fujimaru 1: I'd never make you go alone.
Fujimaru 2: She invited all of us, after all.
Mash: Right. Let's go, Master! The Assassin is almost in reach!
Fergus: These must be your personal chambers.
Assassin: Indeed! How good of you to come, Shi Gou!
Mash: Confirmed! That's the Assassin of the Nightless City! But...who's that next to her?
Mash: Another Servant reading! Be careful, Master!
Assassin: Hm? Oh yes, I suppose you wouldn't have met yet, would you. Very well, you may introduce yourself.
F：???: ...All right. I'm a Caster Servant.
F：???: I serve as a tactician here in the Nightless City.
Fergus: (Another woman...But, she seems so uncomfortable. )
Fergus: (And her eyes...they're so sad. It's as though she's scared of everything. )
d'Eon: Oho, a tactician? And here I thought you were the type to lead a nation a touch more whimsically.
Assassin: Don't be ridiculous. The best rulers are those who know how to make use of their subjects. I take great pride in my choice of adjutants.
Assassin: Skilled underlings deserve to be valued–to be given the sort of work that suits those skills.
Assassin: I am an unrivaled judge of talent. I would go so far as to say that not even the great Qin Shi Huang or my ancestor, Liu Bang, can surpass me.
Assassin: Case in point: it was all thanks to Caster's clever planning that I was so easily able to drown those filthy rats in Ys. Hahaha!
Fujimaru 1: You must be the Caster Dahut mentioned.
Fujimaru 2: Dahut said something about you betraying her.
Caster: ...I'm afraid it's true. I did once serve Ys.
Caster: But, if I had stayed there, well...I didn't want to die, so...
Assassin: Dahut pursued hedonistic pleasure to its absolute extreme. She never planned for the future, but always chose to live purely for the moment.
Assassin: Caster tried to warn her over and over,but that lust-crazed wench refused to listen.
Assassin: In time, she realized that Ys would one day come to an ignominious end, and decided to come work for me.
Caster: And I am truly grateful for your compassion, your Highness.
Assassin: Speaking of which, what do you think of my Nightless City? It's nothing at all like that pitiful pile of planks that used to be Ys, right?
Fujimaru 1: Honestly, they're both pretty horrible.
Fujimaru 2: You couldn't pay me enough to live here.
Assassin: Indeed, I knew you'd say as mu–Wh-what!? (Flump)
Astolfo: Whoa! She just fell right off her throne and faceplanted! Just like in my cartoons! Oooh, she sure popped right back up there though!
Assassin: A-absurd. You must be lying to me. That...there's no other reason you would say such a thing!
Assassin: You couldn't possibly fail to see its splendor after witnessing it firsthand! I cannot believe otherwise!
Assassin: Whatever your original purpose in coming here, you should have seen enough of my city even before I granted you an audience to recognize its brilliance!
Assassin: If anything, I was certain you would arrive, prostrate yourselves before me, and beg me to let you live in my glorious city! Don't you agree, tactician!?
Caster: ...Yes, of course. I...couldn't agree more.
d'Eon: (I can see she's doing her best to avert her eyes. )
Astolfo: Hey! We're the ones who can't believe what we're hearing? How could you be proud of this glowy mess?
Assassin: You need to ask? The answer is blindingly obvious.
Assassin: This city is light itself. Where there is light, there is justice. Thus, this city is overwhelmingly just. In fact, it is a city of nothing BUT justice!
d'Eon: ...! That is utterly absurd!
d'Eon: You have torture openly displayed. The men your women keep are terrified of it and rightly so!
d'Eon: People rat each other out left and right. Nobody can trust anyone else, let alone speak their minds freely!
Assassin: Well of course. I strongly encourage my subjects to report any transgressions they witness, after all.
Assassin: If anything, I would distrust the ones who don't. Evil should not be hidden. Crimes should not be covered up.
Assassin: They should say something the moment they so much as sense wrongdoing afoot. That way, my loyal Torturers can take over and compel the offender to come clean.
Fergus: ...There is so much wrong with that...I don't even know where to start. Just off the top of my head, what about false accusations or misunderstandings?
Fergus: A system like that would surely incentivize people to falsify reports in order to kick others down.
Assassin: Never. That sort of thing only happens in other, lesser nations.
Assassin: In a truly just nation, one that holds itself to the highest standard, there can be no mistakes, and certainly no false accusations...
Assassin: ...nor any who would misuse the reporting system for their own ends. Such things would simply never happen.
Fujimaru 1: Well they sure as hell exist here!
Fujimaru 2: That's completely unrealistic!
Astolfo: Exactly. Take a walk around! Your city isn't even KINDA like that!
Assassin: The Nightless City is still young. As such, some...growing pains are to be expected.
Assassin: But, as my methods spread and take root, this city will quickly grow closer to that ideal.
Assassin: Nonetheless, with all of that said, even you cannot deny that my city is far more peaceful and orderly than Ys or El Dorado.
Assassin: Surely you saw for yourselves how brightly it glitters? That is all the proof you could need to know that my reign is good and proper.
Assassin: Under my rule, evil will die out, the strong will assume responsibility and flourish, and the weak will serve as their foundation.
Assassin: What could possibly be wrong with that? Even a child could see the simple truth of this path!
Fergus: (...In one sense, she's right. That WOULD be a strong manner in which to lead a country. But...)
Assassin: Here, I'll spell it out for you: in a nation where everyone holds themselves to the highest standards, reporting wrongdoing is the perfect approach.
Assassin: With all of my subjects vigilant, there will be no tolerance for evil of any kind, no matter how small.
Assassin: Eventually, that approach will lead to the end of evil entirely.
Assassin: And so the goal of proper conduct is precisely what will set people on the correct path!
Mash: I don't know if this is the best way to say this, but...you're wrong. You're just...wrong.
Mash: Even if that did make evil disappear, and no more crimes ever took place in that nation anymore...
Mash: ...I can't imagine the people who live there could ever smile.
Fujimaru 1: I agree. That's not true peace at all.
Assassin: Grrr. I don't know who that voice belongs to,but she was clearly “dissing” me! How dare you!
Assassin: None of you has even the slightest self-control! And it's not just you! All of humanity is like that!
Assassin: You all need to learn to endure the most arduous hardships. To work hard, and study with diligence!
Assassin: As long as one builds character like that, evil will never take root in their minds! In time, there will no longer be a need for transgressions to be reported!
Assassin: And yet...
Assassin: You dare to criticize my rule, and in my presence! Caster, what is the punishment for this heinous crime?
Caster: I don't think we have a punishment for this particular...crime. But, if we add this to the “bothering me for no specific reason” category...
Caster: ...then the punishment would be for Your Highness to torture them yourself, and then life in prison.
Assassin: Yes, that will do. Very well then, I shall first torture you myself, then you can begin your new life rotting in my dungeon!
Assassin: However, since I am nothing if not merciful, I shall call in my best Torturers, those who can compel anyone to speak the truth.
Assassin: In effect, I shall make it easier for you to repent and confess your true feelings. Namely...
Assassin: “I beg your forgiveness. Your Nightless City is actually super awesome. I was just so shy I couldn't come out and say that before. ” Not that that will lessen the severity of your sentence, of course.
Assassin: I'm afraid that not even a nation's ruler can bend its laws once she has made them.
Assassin: Caster, you will assist me.
Caster: Um, well, I...
Assassin: If these people are truly foolish enough to fail to understand the righteousness of my path, they will have come here with the goal of destroying this city.
Assassin: If they succeed, you will not escape unscathed.
Caster: ...Then it seems I have no choice. I don't want to die, so...I will fight...
Astolfo: Greeeat, a whole buncha those Torturers again!
d'Eon: We may still have many interlopers to deal with...but we are also finally within reach of our goal. We cannot let this chance go to waste!
Mash: You're up against an Assassin and a Caster! We still don't know their True Names, so please, be careful!
Assassin: You're quite good. More's the pity, really. Why do you not understand?
Assassin: There is nothing wrong with my system of reporting. As long as people can hold themselves to a high standard, they CAN conduct themselves properly!
Assassin: Of course, they must put in the effort to do so. Namely, the effort to uphold my laws, to suppress their base desires.
Assassin: I understand that by virtue of being human, one will inevitably have desires.
Assassin: The desire to sleep when one wants, to eat what one wants, to be lazy, to even commit crimes...
Assassin: But it is only the suppression of those desires that will allow for a true and just nation to be born.
Assassin: In that sense, those fools in Ys were the polar opposite, since they explicitly sought out the pleasures that come from pure indulgence.
Assassin: And thus, their destruction was assured! But not me. Not the Nightless City.
Assassin: Though some may remain here who cannot control their desires, they will be weeded out in due time.
Assassin: If one can apply oneself in a focused, dedicated manner, one is certain to walk a moral and just path! Why can you not understand that!?
Fergus: Moral people and a just nation, huh?
Fergus: So far as we can tell, this nation is a den of torture and cruelty. I wonder if it only seems like justice to you because of how above it all you hold yourself.
Fergus: The more I learn about running nations, the harder it appears to–
d'Eon: Stay alert! Some Torturers still remain!
Assassin: See, that is how I once obtained something I wished for myself. I swore I would claim it, and worked hard to make my goal a reality!
Assassin: In essence, the moment I made my decision was also the moment in which I acquired the treasure I had been seeking my entire life.
Assassin: Indeed, that may be why I find myself in this form right now.
Astolfo: Treasure, huh. I got a buttload of that when I was alive, y'know. Course, I ended up either lending it out or giving most of it away...
Astolfo: What kinda treasure didja get?
Assassin: Hehehe, do you wish to know?
Caster: Your Highness, I don't think it's a good idea to–
Da Vinci: I take it that treasure was a country of your very own, Empress Regnant.
Assassin: ...Oho. It seems you have finally arrived at my name.
Assassin: I have had many titles, of course, but I am particularly fond of that one. You have good taste.
Fujimaru 1: Da Vinci!
Fujimaru 2: Empress Regnant? Seriously?
Assassin: What do you mean “seriously”!?
Assassin: That is a pretty damn cool title! I won't hear a word claiming otherwise!
Da Vinci: Sorry for my absence. I've been focusing on analyzing the data, and I've finally got an answer.
Da Vinci: Granted, she's been giving us plenty of hints from the beginning, but her childish appearance didn't quite line up with everything.
Da Vinci: But now that you've fought her directly, we have much more accurate data to work with, and I'm certain of my conclusion beyond any doubt.
Da Vinci: Encouraging citizens to spy and report on one another...Employing brutes known as Torturers to go around hurting people and drag out undesired truths...
Da Vinci: And this “Yaoguang Hall,” the heart of the Nightless City...
Da Vinci: While it may not have been quite as flashy as this incarnation, this Servant is still reported to have lived in a building of the same name.
Da Vinci: ...In other words, all of these are things she used while she was still alive.
Da Vinci: She's known as an empress here, right? That's not because she's the ruler of this city.
Da Vinci: It's because she really was an empress.
Da Vinci: What's more, she was the only empress in all of history to ever rule over China.
d'Eon: A Chinese empress!?
Da Vinci: She began her rise as a concubine to Emperor Taizong of the Tang dynasty, and later married his son, Gaozong, following Taizong's death.
Da Vinci: She assassinated her rivals, steadily gained power, and eventually claimed the entire country as her own.
Da Vinci: She commanded her subjects to address her as “Dowager,” “Empress Dowager,” and later “Empress Regnant”...
Da Vinci: If we believe her most popular name to be her True Name, we have two to choose from:
Da Vinci: Zetian Wu Hou or Wu Zetian!
Wu Zetian: Oh? Hahahaha! Well done. You're absolutely right!
Caster: Oh no...Now they know her True Name...
Astolfo: Whaaat!? You're telling me THAT'S a real empress!?
Wu Zetian: Who are you referring to as “that,”you little peach-haired hussy!
Fujimaru 1: Peach-haired...?
Fujimaru 2: Hussy...?
Wu Zetian: You know, I didn't like the look of you from the start...Well, no matter. I can deal with you later.
Wu Zetian: Now then, since you know I am indeed a true empress, let me ask you: Does that change your mind?
Wu Zetian: There is no other city that shines as brightly as mine. With proper effort, all can lead a good life.
Wu Zetian: If you swear to become my subjects, I may even change my mind about imprisoning you for life.
Astolfo: Bah! PASS! This city may not look as horribad or rowdy as Ys, at least on the surface, but...
d'Eon: Indeed. It only LOOKS that way. And then only because its harsh lights prevent one from seeing it clearly.
d'Eon: At its core, it is just as twisted and rotten as Ys.
Fergus: You can talk about your city's justice and propriety all you like, but in the end, you can't hide the fact that it is fundamentally lacking in both.
Fergus: As Mash said earlier, it is the one clear truth of this place.
Fujimaru 1: A city where no one smiles can never be just.
Mash: ...Well said, Master. Of that much, I'm absolutely certain!
Wu Zetian: What fools you are. Such a pity.
Wu Zetian: Clearly both I and my city are simply too bright for rabble such as you. In that case, I won't force you to look. You may avert your gaze and remain in the dark.
Wu Zetian: There is nothing more to do now, as there is no greater crime than refusing one's punishment.
Wu Zetian: Now that it has come to this, your execution shall be carried out in a grand and ostentatious manner. Tactician, call my expecting subjects.
Caster: ...Yes, Your Highness.
Wu Zetian: In the name of Wu, I command you to be born!
d'Eon: Th-there's more of them now! It's just like what happened with the pirates in Ys!
Astolfo: Oh gross, not again...
Wu Zetian: Do not mistake me for a smug and foolish ruler. I know very well when to make use of others. However...
Wu Zetian: I will say this: two among you I will throttle with my own hands!
Wu Zetian: ...That cat with the long fur, and the peach-colored hussy with the cattish air about her!
Astolfo: Did she just call me that again!?
Wu Zetian: I can't stand cats. I shall cut off all your limbs myself and stuff you into a bottle for safekeeping!
Mash: Fou being a cat is debatable, but that doesn't matter! I'll never let you do that. Let's beat her, Master!
Resistance Boy: Do you see anything yet, Rider!?
Resistance Boy: Um, if you like, I'd be happy to take over the telescope for you and–uh, never mind!
Rider: That flashy castle that showed up out of nowhere must be the Assassin's lair. Nothing of significance seems to have happened except that.
Rider: That was some time ago too, and still no smoke signals. I guess they must be fighting her inside there as we speak.
Resistance Boy: Do...do you think they can win?
Rider: They'd better, or else we'll have come out all this way for nothing.
Rider: Anyway, it's up to them now. All we can do is make sure we're ready to go in whenever we–What is it?
Resistance Man: W-we just got an urgent report back from the scouts, sir!
Rider: What did they say?
Resistance Man: Well, from the west side of the Nightless City...
Resistance Man: ......!
Rider: You're kidding me. Of all the times...
Resistance Boy: R-Rider! I've got some bad news!
Rider: I know. I've already heard the report.
Resistance Boy: No, not that! There! Don't you hear it!?
Rider: Oh, come on. Now we have to deal with that too!?
Rider: Dammit, how unlucky can we get? I wonder whose bad luck it is: mine, or theirs...
Resistance Boy: Wh-what do we do now, Rider?
Rider: You need to ask? We get ready to head in there the moment we see the signal. Now hurry!
Wu Zetian: Guh...
Mash: Y-you did it!
d'Eon: No...She hasn't fallen yet!
Wu Zetian: Tell me...Do you know why I'm an empress? Was I born to it? No. Absolutely not.
Wu Zetian: I was an ordinary girl, daughter of a lowly government official.
Wu Zetian: After my father died, and my relatives took me in, they would beat me merely to pass the time.
Wu Zetian: There is but one reason why I rose from such lowly origins to sit atop all of China...
Wu Zetian: ...because I wished it, set my heart on it, and worked towards it!
Wu Zetian: I studied books and martial arts! I learned the ways of charm and allure! I cast off everything I didn't need and polished what I did to its utmost!
Wu Zetian: I worked day and night, foregoing leisure and rest. I trained myself to ignore my relatives' distractions.
Wu Zetian: And even once my beauty was recognized, and I was admitted into the emperor's palace, I didn't stop.
Wu Zetian: I killed the emperor's wife. His concubines! So many others I quickly lost count!
Wu Zetian: I used poison, cunning, power...everything at my disposal to kill all who stood in my way!
Wu Zetian: Indeed, I rose through pure dedication, as it was the sole method that let me achieve my goals!
Wu Zetian: And so I gained all of China as my prize. And I did so entirely on my own!
d'Eon: This power she's giving off is immense...even after we have her cornered!
Fergus: So this is the strength of a true king...
Fergus: The spirit of one who ruled over a vast land, and left her mark on history!
Astolfo: Oh man...This is just like when Charlemagne gets all mad about something. I don't think we can touch her!
Fujimaru 1: I won't deny that you worked incredibly hard.
Astolfo: Scratch that! Way to go, Master!
Fujimaru 1: But a nation without smiles is an empty thing.
Wu Zetian: ...Hehe. Hehehe. Hehehehe!
Wu Zetian: I am told that when I was a baby, a monk prophesized that I would one day ascend to the highest domain.
Wu Zetian: When I learned about this, I was furious at him for sticking his nose into my affairs.
Wu Zetian: It was not providence that brought me to the top! I would never permit something like that to interfere with my endeavors!
Wu Zetian: I stand here now on my own two feet. As such, I am the only one who decides when those feet will move.
Wu Zetian: There is no one else who helped me get here–no others who are responsible for my success. There was no sage's admonition, no fool's blade, no impassioned entreaty pushing me upward!
Wu Zetian: Thus, not even the heavens themselves can force me to kneel in defeat!
Mash: (Her Spirit Origin reading is in tatters, and looks as though it could disappear at any moment. And yet, her presence is still so strong! )
Rider: ...Crap, he's charging straight in there. This isn't going to be pretty.
d'Eon: What the!?
Astolfo: Hoooly s–What just crashed through the ceiling!?
Mash: Spirit Origin pattern match confirmed. I still can't believe it!
Mash: That's one of the Servants who went missing from Chaldea: Heracles, the legendary Greek hero!
Mash: That one strike obliterated Wu Zetian's Spirit Origin!
Fujimaru 1: Heracles...No, wait...
Fujimaru 2: ...!
Fergus: Something's wrong! He's...HUGE!
Mash: You're right. Our records indicate he should be about 253cm–just over eight feet tall–but he's clearly far bigger than that!
Astolfo: A-at least, he saved us...? Wh-whoa!
Astolfo: I think he tried to attack me! He just smooshed that Torturer like a spiky pancake!
Astolfo: He's huuuge! And hugely strong! But how is he so faaast!?
Fujimaru 1: Does this mean he's not on our side!?
Fujimaru 2: So he's just attacking everything in sight!?
d'Eon: ...Are you going to face him, Master? I'm afraid that fighting such a ferocious monster will only end in some or all of us dying...
d'Eon: If you wish to fight him nonetheless, I will go alone. I may not be able to defeat him, but I should at least be able to stall him for a few minutes.
Caster: ...Wait. You mustn't fight him. No matter how strong your defense, a single strike would still end you.
d'Eon: Caster...What do you mean by that? Do you know what's going on here? Why is Heracles so enormous?
Caster: Please...sheathe your swords. I have no wish to fight. I surrender.
Caster: That man is a Rogue Servant who appeared here in this underground world some time ago. He is a Berserker, in every sense of the word.
Caster: He comes and goes at a moment's notice, leaving nothing but destruction in his wake. He is more like a natural disaster than a person.
Caster: He has no conscious mind, and of course, he cannot be reasoned with. He is destruction incarnate.
Mash: ...Wait. Was that what Rider was warning us about before we came here?
Astolfo: That's what he meant!? Welp, I'm sold! Seeing that makes not believing kinda hard!
d'Eon: ...I am surprised you answered that so directly. Are you planning something else?
Caster: No, I'm not. I just...don't want to die now that Wu Zetian is gone.
Caster: Furthermore, I believe our efforts would be best directed at escape.
Fujimaru 1: I can get behind that!
Mash: We've accomplished our goal of defeating Wu Zetian. It seems she wasn't the Demon God Pillar either, but at least we managed to free this city!
Mash: I suggest we get out of here and meet back up with the Resistance in order to discuss our next move!
Astolfo: G-good plan! Let's get outta here while that thing is popping Torturers like bubble wrap!
Fergus: What's going on out here!?
d'Eon: The Nightless City's subjects and Torturers appear to be doing battle with...
Astolfo: The Amazons!?
Caster: The El Dorado forces...Of all the times for them to show up...
d'Eon: This is pure chaos. If we don't find a way out of this city soon, we may end up fighting both forces at once!
Astolfo: ...Oh great! Look over there! We got even MORE enemies!
Fergus: ...No, wait. That's...!
Fujimaru 1: Rider!
Fujimaru 2: Mr. Positive Thinking himself!
Rider: Sorry, we couldn't wait around for the signal any longer! How'd it go!?
Mash: We managed to take down the Assassin, Wu Zetian! But now we have two other big problems!
Mash: The Amazons from El Dorado, and the giant Berserker wreaking havoc in the building behind us!
Rider: Dammit, I was hoping I was mistaken about seeing him go in here.
Rider: Well, no point in thinking about that now. One of those problems would be bad enough. We can't stay here long with both of them to worry about.
Rider: There's a hell of a lot more of them than there are of us. If we try to fight them head-on, we'll be done for. Resistance, fall back!
Fujimaru 1: Are you sure? After coming all this way?
Rider: As long as we can help you all escape, it's worth it.
Rider: If you are all killed, that could mean the end of the Resistance too.
Rider: But if we escape now, there'll be another chance. There always will be, as long as we don't give up.
d'Eon: Thank you for risking your life to help us, Rider. I wish I had a medal suitable to award your bravery.
Rider: Haha, and I might take you up on that if a medal could fill your belly! Now come on, let's get going!
Mash: ...Wait! Don't go near the front gate! That's...
Fujimaru 1: The Berserker of El Dorado!
Fujimaru 2: The Queen of the Amazons!
Rider: Dammit, of all the rotten luck...!
Astolfo: Aw, man. We've got Berserkers for days here! And the big guy in the castle sounds like he's coming out!
Fergus: This is what they mean when they say “between a rock and a hard place. ” What will we do now!?
Berserker: ...Ah, ahh, ahhh...
d'Eon: Here she comes! She's so fast!
d'Eon: Ngh! Don't underestimate me! My sword is sworn to defend and protect! It cannot be broken through brute force alo–hm...?
Berserker: ...les...! I'll kill him, I'll kill him, I'll kill you!!!
Astolfo: Sh-she just blew right past us!
Astolfo: ...And right into the castle where Heracles is.
d'Eon: Wh-what was that all about?
Rider: We can figure that out later. Just thank your lucky stars she didn't come after us! Now come on, let's go!
Fergus: (The Nightless City...a city of bright lights where ratting one another out was strongly encouraged. )
Fergus: (If everyone conducts themselves properly, then no mistakes will be made, and peace and order can last forever. Such a nation would grow and flourish. )
Fergus: (But that isn't right. You can't just erase or suppress human desires entirely. If anything, I think it's those desires that make life worth living. )
Fergus: (If the majority of people suppress their desires, the country may well prosper, and the higher-class subjects may well live happily. I don't know if Wu Zetian was aware of how the women here lived their lives. )
Fergus: (But for them, this nation WAS a happy place. As was Ys for the pirates. )
Fergus: (...But of course, the same can't be said for the men who were treated as lesser beings. For them, both of these cities were places of terrible suffering. )
Fergus: (Is there no possible way to create a nation where all of its people can be happy? )
Astolfo: Earth to Fergus! Stop staring at the city and start moving your feet!
Astolfo: Don't forget we still have to pick up that injured guy we hid away earlier!
Fergus: Oh, right! Sorry!
Resistance Boy: Well, it wasn't easy, but we all somehow managed to make it out of the Nightless City.
Resistance Boy: We were all still running away, desperately trying to put some distance between us and the city, when I heard a sound and looked back.
Resistance Boy: There...I could see the largest building in the whole city, glowing impossibly bright as flames consumed it.
Resistance Boy: It was faint, but I thought I could see the two monsters fighting each other atop its roof.
Resistance Boy: One of these monsters was, of course, the “natural disaster. ” The other, hard as it is to believe...
Resistance Boy: ...looked to be a smaller, yet equally destructive disaster of a sort. I could just be seeing things, but I could have sworn they were evenly matched.
Section 9: Temporary Retreat
Rider: I hate to admit it, but we've just taken one step forward and two steps back.
Mash: I'm afraid so. We may have succeeded at defeating Wu Zetian and bringing down the Nightless City, but...
Astolfo: Now the Amazons have taken it over instead, right?
Rider: Right. We're still not quite sure what happened,but the men we left behind have reported back...
Rider: After the “natural disaster”–the big guy–ended his rampage, he disappeared as usual.
Rider: And now the Amazons have taken over what's left of the city.
Da Vinci: I think we can do better than to keep referring to him as “natural disaster” or “big guy. ” I say it's time we came up with a proper name for him.
Da Vinci: He may have originally been Heracles, but his Spirit Origin has changed dramatically.
Da Vinci: His output, durability, and even divinity are all much higher than usual. The first thing that comes to mind is to call him Giant Heracles...
Da Vinci: ...but since he once fought against the giants alongside the gods of Olympus, I don't think he'd be particularly thrilled about that.
Da Vinci: How about calling him “Heracles Megalos,” meaning “Huge Hero Heracles”?
Da Vinci: We could even shorten it to just “Megalos. ”
Mash: ...I agree. I can't quite bring myself to refer to that Servant as Heracles either.
Mash: Megalos sounds like a good name to me.
Mash: Anyway, after Megalos destroyed the city, and the Amazons came in and took over the remains...
Mash: What happened to Wu Zetian's subjects?
Rider: I'm told they lost their will to fight and meekly surrendered to the Amazons.
Da Vinci: Given how they “reproduce,” it's possible that they, and the pirates, are more like familiars than people.
Da Vinci: Which is to say, they were created by their respective rulers, and don't truly belong to this world.
Da Vinci: If that's true, it would make sense for them to simply submit to whatever ruler has assumed control.
Rider: Hmph...Submit, huh.
Rider: I don't know if the Amazons were planning this or if it was just luck, but either way, they've ended up swooping in and making off with everything.
Rider: ...Pisses me the hell off. We'll have to make sure to return the favor some day.
Rider: Anyway, that aside...
Rider: What's she doing here? Wasn't she the Assassin's tactician?
Fujimaru 1: She just kind of tagged along...
d'Eon: Indeed. She ended up accompanying us after we all made our escape.
Fujimaru 2: I couldn't just leave her behind...
Mash: I may not like the risk that represents, but I will say that that sounds just like you, Senpai...
Fou: Fou fou.
Fujimaru 1: Wh-what is she doing!?
Mash: I-I know that pose!
Mash: I've often seen Benkei doing that in front of Ushiwakamaru here in Chaldea's hallways.
Mash: It's a traditional Japanese form of apology known as “dogeza”!
Fujimaru 2: Is that...Japanese “dogeza”!?
d'Eon: It is indeed. I know of it as well.
d'Eon: I've never seen one performed so beautifully before. The angle of her head, the arrangement of her hands...I feel as though I'm witnessing a work of art!
Rider: What are you playing at?
Caster: ...I have heard that this is the ultimate apology,one that originates from a land known as Japan.
Caster: I understand that, as this pose is performed with one's entire body, it allows one to show absolute remorse when pleading for one's life.
Rider: Pleading for your life...?
Caster: Yes. I...I don't want to die. That's my only wish.
Caster: You have defeated Wu Zetian, and so I am surrendering to you.
Caster: I believe that is the best option I have to ensure my survival.
Caster: So please, I only ask that you spare my life. In return, I will do anything you want.
Da Vinci: You sure you should be throwing around promises like “I'll do anything you want” so casually?
Da Vinci: Because a certain wolf in sheep's clothing may be looking to “fleece” your bodacious bod for himself.
Fergus: ...Wh-why is everyone looking at me!?
Fergus: Please stop looking at me like I am some kind of wild animal.
Fergus: The other me might behave like that sometimes, but I never would.
Fergus: At any rate...I can understand how she feels.
Fergus: It's only natural to not want to die. Especially for a woman who isn't a warrior.
Rider: Caster, does this mean you want to be the Resistance's tactician now?
Caster: I'm afraid...that's all I can do.
Rider: First you worked for Dahut at Ys.
Rider: Then you betrayed her to go to Wu Zetian, and now you've come crawling to us, huh?
Caster: ...I understand your reluctance to trust me. I don't blame you.
Caster: But every action I've taken up to this point has stemmed from my desire to not die.
Caster: That desire...holds true even now. So I beg you again not to kill me. Please, don't cast me out.
Da Vinci: I understand not wanting to die, but why would you be scared of getting kicked out?
Caster: If I were forced to leave here, I would have no choice but to go to the Amazons in El Dorado.
Caster: W-wait. I misspoke. I promise, I didn't mean that as a threat!
Caster: Oh no, this is terrible. Now my death is all but assured. I have to repent!
Fujimaru 1: (TIL: some people shake when they repent. )
Fujimaru 2: (So...much...jiggling...Can't...look...away. )
Astolfo: Huh, I've never seen Master look so lost in thought before. I wonder what [♂ he's /♀ she's] thinking?
d'Eon: If that was not a veiled threat to employ you else you take your services to our enemy, then what was it?
Caster: ...I don't believe the queen of El Dorado would have need of me. She would very likely have me killed.
Caster: So as I see it, I have three options.
Caster: Either I die here, I am forced to leave and the Amazons end up killing me, or I join you.
Caster: As such...I must do whatever I can to gain your trust.
Fujimaru 1: I don't know. That's not something easily gained.
Caster: If my promise to serve as your tactician is insufficient...then I have nothing left to lose.
Caster: As proof of my willingness to help...I will tell you my True Name.
Caster: I am Scheherazade. A Caster in name only, whose sole talent lies in spinning tales.
Da Vinci: Aha, Scheherazade. Now your strange summoning act from before all makes sense.
Fujimaru 1: I think I've heard that name before, but...
Fujimaru 2: I've no idea who that is.
Da Vinci: Even if you don't recognize her name, I bet you've at least heard of the stories associated with her.
Da Vinci: Does “One Thousand and One Nights” ring any bells for you? Or maybe “The Arabian Nights”?
Da Vinci: She's the meta character used to deliver every one of those stories.
Da Vinci: The brave daughter of the chief vizier, in the book she tells a new story each night to stop a king from taking her life.
Scheherazade: Brave? No...There was nothing brave about it. I was just desperate to not die.
Scheherazade: I have read countless books and stories, and acquired a fair amount of knowledge in the process.
Scheherazade: I believe that knowledge could be of use to you by helping to predict the enemy's next move, or to better assess the opportunities for you to make yours.
Scheherazade: D-does that sound acceptable?
Scheherazade: Of course, if you have no need of such knowledge, and will kill me if I cannot demonstrate any other benefits of my continued presence...
Scheherazade: The only other thing I have to offer is my body...(Glance)
Fergus: I told you, I'm not going to try anything! Please stop looking at me like that!
Mash: ...What do you think, Senpai?
Fujimaru 1: You can never have too many allies.
Fujimaru 2: We can't just kick her out. That would be cruel...
d'Eon: If that is your decision, Master, we have no objections.
d'Eon: She may have been on our enemies' side thus far, but I can discern no falsehood in her words.
Astolfo: Plus! She gave us advice about how to survive that whole escape the rampaging Megaberserker thing!
Astolfo: If she'd wanted to hurt us, she'd have just let us fight Mega Herc and go kersplat!
Scheherazade: ...Thank you. You have my gratitude.
Fergus: That's more like it. Being scared all the time is no good for your health. A show of positivity is better for everyone.
Fergus: That's how it should be for all women.
Fergus: Erm, well, that is...I don't mean to say women should be subservient to men! I just mean they should be free to be themselves!
Rider: If you're all okay with this, I guess there's no point in me being the lone voice of dissent. Besides, we do need all the help we can get.
Rider: However, I still have to ask this: Are you sure this book knowledge of yours will actually be helpful?
Scheherazade: That's a very fair question.
Scheherazade: As soon as an opportunity to demonstrate my utility presents itself, I shall take it. And as luck would have it, it seems that time is now.
Scheherazade: This scent I'm picking up on the wind is the same as that discovered by Daniel's son, Hâsib.
Scheherazade: In other words...the scent of a snake-woman.
Resistance Boy: Rider, come quick! There's a pack of Lamia after our peaches!
Rider: ...Aha, I see.
Scheherazade: I will also help to rid you of these pests, if only to demonstrate how I might be useful.
Scheherazade: But, please do keep in mind that I usually try to avoid combat as much as possible.
Scheherazade: After all...if you lose in battle, you also lose your life...
Rider: Hmm. All right, Scheherazade, for the moment, I'll admit that you make a good tactician.
Astolfo: I looove getting new allies!
Astolfo: Still, I just had a thought, and I realized something...
Astolfo: Our ultimate goal here is to find the Demon God Pillar hiding in Agartha and take it out, right?
Astolfo: I mean, if we wanna do something about this weird sorta-Singularity place and save everyone down here.
Mash: ...That's exactly right. Our Order is to defeat the Demon God Pillar and destroy all of Agartha.
Mash: Even if we somehow managed to dig a tunnel and let all the men here return to the surface...
Mash: ...there will continue to be new victims until we manage to resolve the underlying cause.
Astolfo: Yup! I get all that.
Astolfo: And at first I kinda figured that the Demon God Pillar we had to kill was the Berserker of El Dorado.
Astolfo: But then I thought: What if it's actually Megalos?
Mash: That's...a good point. It's definitely possible!
d'Eon: His size and strength are certainly far beyond the bounds of any normal Servant.
Astolfo: And if he IS the Pillar, he's gonna be REAL hard to kill, right? I mean we all saw how scary he is in his murder mode back there!
Fergus: Speaking as a Celtic man, I would like nothing more.
Fergus: For us, the stronger our opponent is, the better.
Fergus: There would be no honor in defeating a weakened Greek hero, but now that he is so incredibly powerful, defeating him would bring us unimaginable honor!
Fergus: ...Though of course, I'm afraid I'm almost certainly not yet strong enough to actually do that.
Rider: Now hang on a minute. This Demon God Pillar thing HAS to be that Servant from El Dorado, right? There's no other sensible answer, is there?
d'Eon: What do you mean?
Rider: If this Demon God Pillar is the one that made this place...
Rider: ...then naturally, this place would follow the rules that its creator laid down.
Rider: And the rules of this world are obvious. Men fall from the surface, and women use them as slaves and to create more women.
Rider: In other words, Agartha is a world made for women.
Rider: In which case, the Demon God Pillar must be one of the people trying to rule this world.
Rider: There used to be three possible candidates, but now...there's only one.
Scheherazade: Dahut. Wu Zetian. And the Berserker of El Dorado...
Scheherazade: Their dispositions do seem very different from those of us who don't wish to be here.
Scheherazade: Which then begs the question of whether that is their true disposition, or the Demon God's influence.
d'Eon: Either way, the process of elimination leaves us with only one remaining choice...
Astolfo: Guess that means we gotta take down the Berserker of El Dorado next!
Astolfo: Oh, hey! So, since we've run into Lil' Fergus,Captain Not-Drake, and Mega Herc...
Astolfo: Does that mean that every Servant who disappeared from Chaldea ended up here after all?
Rider: ...Beats me. Like I told you before, I've never met any of them, so I can't say one way or the other.
Scheherazade: Nor can I...It could be that we simply have yet to encounter them...
Scheherazade: ...or it could be that they have already been killed by either Dahut, Wu Zetian, or the Berserker.
Scheherazade: ...What an awful thought. I really don't want to be killed.
Scheherazade: The mere thought of dying compels me to practice begging for my life.
Scheherazade: I suppose the safest thing to do would be to polish my dogeza, since it works so well in many situations.
d'Eon: Are you sure? That dogeza already looked perfect to me.
Rider: Either way, there's no sense worrying about someone we don't even know is here.
Rider: And since we can't count on Megalos for anything, the only ones we CAN count on are the ones who are here.
Rider: All right, tactician, this is your time to shine. How do we go about fighting El Dorado?
Rider: Tell us what you've got in mind.
Scheherazade: Very well...This may be somewhat presumptuous of me, but my advice for our next step is...
Section 10: Invading El Dorado
Rider: Well this is a surprise, leading off by infiltrating the enemy's home base.
Rider: It's so out of left field I'm still wrapping my head around it. I just hope our new tactician here didn't betray us the first chance she got.
Scheherazade: As I've told you many times now...I will not betray you.
Scheherazade: I need all of you to win in order to ensure my own survival.
Scheherazade: I simply determined that this course of action was the best one we could take at this point.
Scheherazade: I admit that it is not without risk...but it would be far riskier NOT to take it.
Scheherazade: If we don't make a move now, the Resistance will be cornered without any means of retaliation.
Scheherazade: That means I would die. And I...don't want to die.
Astolfo: Well that escalated quickly!
Mash: Scheherazade's decision lines up with Chaldea's strategic analysis as well.
Mash: Ys has been wiped out, and the Nightless City is now occupied by the Amazons of El Dorado.
Mash: The balance between the three main powers has completely collapsed, and El Dorado now controls almost all of Agartha.
Mash: And without any opposition, their forces will only continue to grow the longer we wait.
Rider: With all us Servants around, we shouldn't lose when it comes to small-scale battles, but I'm afraid we're hopelessly outmatched in sheer numbers.
Scheherazade: Indeed...which is why our only option is to strike first.
Scheherazade: Now that the Amazons are occupying the Nightless City, their forces must be split.
Scheherazade: Thus, I believe that El Dorado's defenses are currently at their weakest.
d'Eon: If the Berserker is there, we can defeat her before backup arrives.
d'Eon: If she isn't, we can occupy El Dorado before she returns and reduce the Amazons' numbers.
Fergus: It's a truly bold and daring strategy, where speed is of the essence.
Fergus: At first I thought you were a quiet and reserved woman, akin to the moon on a dark night, but I see now that your passion for the battlefield burns as brightly as the scorching sun.
Fergus: I'm very impressed.
Scheherazade: ...(Scoot, scoot)
Scheherazade: I see...Thank you. But I'm merely doing what I can in order to help.
Fujimaru 1: (She's clearly trying to keep her distance. )
Fujimaru 2: (She's obviously super nervous around him. )
d'Eon: Now look what your teasing has done. She really thinks he's a threat. I feel sorry for them both.
Da Vinci: ...(Whistles nonchalantly)
Astolfo: At least Fergus doesn't seem to have noticed.
Fou: Fou fou.
Rider: At any rate, I'm on board with this plan too. I wouldn't have brought my men here otherwise.
Rider: ...You guys ready to go?
Resistance Man A: You bet, Rider!
Resistance Man B: This is it!
Resistance Man C: Now that we're only up against the Amazons, we just have to beat them for this to all be over!
Resistance Man D: Once we win, we'll be able to go back to the surface, right!? I can't wait to see my daughter again!
Rider: ...That's right. Just a little further, and we'll finally have reached our goal. Heh heh heh.
Mash: (Goal? Come to think of it, Rider never told us what it is that he's after. )
Resistance Man B: That laugh sounded kind of sinister, Rider!
Rider: Did it? Sorry about that. I'm just excited that our goal is finally in sight.
Rider: Anyway, like I always say...the important thing is to keep moving forward. Remember that.
Resistance Men: Yes, sir!
Amazon: Wha...The Resistance!
Rider: Well now...Looks like we made contact sooner than we expected.
Rider: We can't have them alerting their comrades. This should make for a good warm-up before the main event!
Astolfo: That was easy-peasy lemon-squeezy!
Fergus: Now that I think about it, the Amazons were the first opponents I fought down here.... Eh? The Demon Boar? No no, that doesn't count.
Fergus: Between Ys and the Nightless City, I thought I had gone through some decent training and grown at least a little since that first fight.
Fergus: But I guess not. I'm still young and weak, and cannot raise my sword against a woman.
Mash: That may be, but personally, I'm grateful that you're entirely focused on keeping Master safe.
Fujimaru 1: It makes it a lot easier to give orders.
Fujimaru 2: It makes it a lot easier on the others.
Fergus: That's...good to hear, I guess.
d'Eon: I suppose it's no surprise given that we are in the heart of their territory, but there certainly are a fair number of Amazons around.
d'Eon: It's fortunate that we are only encountering them in small groups, and that none are very strong.
Rider: It's certainly better than running into strong ones before the main event. It's helped the Resistance get their sea legs too.
Resistance Men: All right, we can do this! Once we've won, we'll be back home before we know it!
Resistance Men: Rider's right! As long as we don't give up, we can do anything! Come on, let's keep going!
Rider: I was a little concerned since so many of these men are heading into battle for the first time, but it looks like I had nothing to worry about.
Astolfo: Yep! This sure is goin' really well! Especially since we're stuck in an actual enemy jungle!
Scheherazade: It's going TOO smoothly! Stop! This might be a–
Rider: What the...!?
Fujimaru 1: We're completely surrounded!
Fujimaru 2: They were waiting for us!?
Mash: I'm so sorry. I could have sworn I was monitoring the situation closely...!
d'Eon: Don't blame yourself. This is the enemy's jungle. There are any number of tricks they could have used.
Rider: (Dammit. Does this mean Caster really did sell us out? )
Rider: (...Guess not. She's quaking in her boots more than anyone. Looks like she just plain got outsmarted. )
Rider: (So, what to do now...)
Fergus: Please be careful. She's here!
Berserker: ...I see you rats have walked right into our trap. What fools you are.
Rider: She's not even kinda surprised to see us here! She's sure got our number!
Scheherazade: How did you know...?
Berserker: Hmph. I was well aware you had gone over to the Resistance, Caster of the Nightless City.
Berserker: I may be a Berserker and a queen, but above all else,I am a warrior, a general.
Berserker: And no one makes her way to general without a clear understanding of battlefield tactics.
Berserker: Keeping such things in mind, determining how best to counter your most likely move was trivial.
Berserker: Ys has sunk beneath the sea, and the Nightless City has fallen. This underground world is as good as ours.
Berserker: It is now a nation of warriors led by a single queen. There is no gap between rich and poor, and no distinction in class apart from warrior and royalty.
Berserker: None could hope for a fairer, stronger nation here or anywhere else.
Fergus: A fair and strong, nation...
Astolfo: Oof, sounds boring!
Astolfo: That sounds like another super frowny, no-smile kinda nation, though in a pretty different way than the Nightless City. And in Ys, people were just a liiittle bit too happy, y'know!
Berserker: It is simply the way of things. The nation that survives will always be the nation that is strongest.
Berserker: But we cannot have stray men doing as they please, fouling our land with their waste.
Berserker: Rejoice. I shall decide which of you we need, and which we do not. Those we do not shall have the honor of dying by my hand.
Berserker: As for whom I choose, that falls to you.
Berserker: Come, men. Show me which of you is strong enough to be worthy of being kept as our slaves!
Astolfo: Uh oh...here they come!
Resistance Men: R-Rider!
Rider: Keep it together and take up your weapons! But remember, stick to fighting the Amazons.
Rider: Whatever you do, don't go near that woman! We're the only ones who have a chance against her!
Fujimaru 1: Come on, guys! Let's take down this Berserker!
Astolfo: Well, this is all happening kinda fast, but 'kay!
d'Eon: Our enemy is right before us. Once we defeat her, this will all be over!
Fergus: Right now...I'll just have to do the best I can!
Scheherazade: ...I'll help however I can to ensure I don't die, but I don't know how much use I will be!
Berserker: Well well. You are certainly powerful for such a motley group.
Berserker: Good. The stronger the men, the better.
Berserker: ...As long as they aren't “them. ”
Fujimaru 1: Who's “them”!?
d'Eon: We don't have time to converse with her now, Master!
d'Eon: Still...the scales may be tipping in our favor!
Resistance Man A: Yeaaah! We can do this!
Resistance Man B: Anyone who's injured, get back! We can handle the Amazons as long as we keep ganging up on them!
Resistance Man C: There's no way I'm giving up now! Not when victory's so close I can taste it!
Berserker: ...My proud children. My Amazonian warriors. I did not order you to frolic about for fun.
Berserker: I see you are underestimating them, merely because they are men.
Berserker: Then I shall remind you: pathetic men though they are, they are still enemies. And we proud Amazons do not hold back against our enemies.
Berserker: That is how we do battle!
Berserker: Weak enemies allow us to show our strength. Strong enemies are a chance for us to refine our skills.
Berserker: Whatever our enemy, we are to relish the opportunity they provide. Thus, as your queen, I command you now:
Amazon: Follow Her Majesty! –!
Amazon: Louder! –!!
Fujimaru 1: Gah, my ears!
Fujimaru 2: I've never heard so much synchronized shouting!
Astolfo: What the hell are they doing!?
Scheherazade: Could this be...the Amazons' war cry...!?
Scheherazade: This is bad. Be careful!!!
Rider: Shit! They're cutting right through us!
d'Eon: I'm afraid so. Once they began this war cry, they became far more formidable opponents!
d'Eon: Their strength, speed, agility, and durability have all increased. They no longer even feel pain!
d'Eon: It is as though they have all gained Madness Enhancement! How is this happening!?
Fergus: I know from experience that battle cries are important in combat. They inspire soldiers and help raise morale. But this one is on a whole other level!
Scheherazade: Um...if you would like to know a good way to beg for your life, I can think of thirty different methods.
Scheherazade: I believe that one used among a subset of African tribes which involves opening your mouth and raising both hands high up at an angle...
Scheherazade: ...may be the best way of indicating our surrender to them, with a three percent chance of success.
Fujimaru 1: That sounds like...Rome!
Fujimaru 2: I think that might only make them more upset!
Scheherazade: True, they could well end up interpreting that stance in a different way altogether.
Scheherazade: This really is a difficult problem. Perhaps dogeza is still the safest option after all.
Rider: You want to know the option that'll give you the best chance at surviving this!? Stop thinking up ways to beg for your life and start fighting for it!
Astolfo: Right on! We gotta focus on breaking through their defenses!
Mash: I'll look for the weakest link in their surrounding formation! Hang in there, Master!
Mash: ...There! I see it!
Mash: Everyone, focus your efforts on the formation at eight o'clock! That's where their line is weakest!
Rider: Tch...You hear that, men!? This isn't the end! Resistance, fall back!
d'Eon: That goes for us too, Master! Come, I'll bring up the rear!
Amazon: I'm sorry, my queen. They got away.
Berserker: I see. That is disappointing. All the more so after showing them our war cry.
Amazon: My deepest apologies...
Berserker: Well, no matter. One of their Servants excelled at defense. That one must have defended the rabble as they fled, tails between their legs.
Berserker: ...How many did you kill?
Amazon: If you include the ones we hunted while giving chase...about half.
Berserker: I see. About the same as our own casualties. It remains to be seen whether they will continue their struggle, or come to pledge their submission.
Amazon: What shall we do with the men who surrendered?
Amazon: Our expanded territory has led to an increase in our population as well, so we are currently low on men. Perhaps we should send them to–
Berserker: No need for that. Execute them.
Amazon: ...Yes, Your Majesty. My apologies.
Berserker: Those we captured for child-birthing when they first fell from the surface are one matter.
Berserker: But the seed of those who oppose us must be selected with care.
Berserker: Those who have surrendered to us out of fear are tainted with cowardice. Such must not be permitted to enter into our bloodline.
Berserker: However, if you find any men who we have defeated in honorable combat...
Berserker: Men who have lost their arms or legs, yet still glare at us as if to rip our throats out with their teeth given the chance...
Berserker: Those I give you leave to bring back and use them as you will. However...
Amazon: ...! Y-yes, your Majesty! I understand!
Berserker: The Greek hero is the one exception!
Section 11: Flames of Progress
Resistance Men: ...
Rider: So...this is all that made it?
Fujimaru 1: We lost about half of them...
Fujimaru 2: ...
Scheherazade: ...I'm so sorry...
Rider: This wasn't your fault.
Rider: In the end, we're the ones who agreed to your plan. It's like I told you before.
Rider: We went along with it because we thought it would work. Our enemy just happened to be one step ahead.
Rider: So don't waste your breath apologizing.
Scheherazade: ...All right...
Rider: The important thing is figuring out our next move. I'm not done yet. I'm not giving up.
Astolfo: I...I don't know. I think everyone here's still in shock.
Resistance Man A: Dammit...I can't stop shaking...
Resistance Man B: I can't believe he's dead...One moment, he's right there next to me, and the next he's just...gone!
G：Resistance Man C: I kept hacking at them, and hacking at them, but they just kept getting back up...If I close my eyes, I can still see them coming for us!
H：Resistance Man D: D-do you really think we have a chance?
G：Resistance Man E: Hell if I know! I just don't wanna die...That's all I want!
H：Resistance Man F: Same here. Same for all of us. Maybe we should've stayed slaves if we're just gonna end up dead.
Rider: ...All right, I say it's time for some vittles!
Rider: Today, you guys can eat as much as you want! Go ahead and stuff yourselves silly!
Rider: There's nothing else you can do today, so don't worry about a thing. We've got the worrying covered.
Resistance Man A: Yeah...now that you mention it, I AM pretty hungry.
Resistance Man B: Let's get something to eat. I'm exhausted.
Rider: Hang on a minute.
Rider: Have you seen that boy anywhere? The one who's always hanging around me?
Resistance Man A: ...
Resistance Man A: I...I don't think he made it back...
Rider: ...I see. Guess his luck ran ou–No. There wasn't anything he could have done.
Fujimaru 1: Rider...
Fujimaru 2: ...
Rider: I told him to run away when he knew he couldn't win.
Rider: He was just a kid. Nobody would've blamed him for turning tail at the first sign of trouble.
Rider: What a waste...
Rider: Why're you looking at me like that? I'm just a dull old man. Nothing special to see here.
Rider: Anyway, you guys should get some rest too. To be honest, we'd all be dead right now if you hadn't been around. I'm grateful to you.
Mash: ...Thank you. It WAS a rather intense battle. We could all do with some rest to recover our strength.
Mash: I think you should take Rider up on his suggestion and turn in for the day, Master.
Astolfo: Good plan! We can save thinking about tomorrow for tomorrow!
Scheherazade: Yes...I agree you should all get some rest. But...I'm going to keep thinking about our next plan.
d'Eon: Do you still feel responsible for what happened today?
Scheherazade: That is part of it...but the truth is, I just want to do whatever I can to ensure I survive.
Fergus: I see. In that case, you can also think about it while having a drink.
Fergus: I may be young and inexperienced...
Fergus: But as the latest in a long line of kings, I know what to do in times like this.
Fergus: You should go to where the men are drinking, and join them in drowning their sorrows.
Scheherazade: I'm...not sure that's a good idea. My plan was what failed us all so spectacularly.
Fergus: Yes, I'm sure there will be some there who will have their grievances with you. But in my opinion...
Fergus: ...you should take what they say to heart. That is part of a tactician's role after a plan fails, and your opportunity to calm their resentment.
Fergus: There's no need to overthink it. Just think of it as giving them an opportunity to vent.
Fergus: Don't worry. If anyone crosses the line, I'll be there to back you.
Scheherazade: ...Very well. In that case, I shall take you up on your advice.
d'Eon: I'll join you in drink as well. Besides, I may be able to help take the men's minds off their sorrows by entertaining them with my sword dance.
Astolfo: I think I'll stay here and fall asleep with Master. They'd run outta liquor if we all went!
Astolfo: Guess that leaves me and Fou for Master's guard and body pillow duty! See you all tomorrow!
Mash: I could have sworn I just heard something fairly improper...
Mash: Well, I'll be monitoring you from here regardless, so if anything happens, I'll know who to blame.
Mash: Anyway...Good night, Senpai.
Fergus: I'm sorry. I noticed you leaving, and thought you might have had too much to drink.
Fergus: I have some water for you if you'd like it.
Scheherazade: No, thank you...I just felt like getting some night air. Besides, we Servants do not easily become intoxicated, after all.
Fergus: Oh, right. I'm sorry. I guess there really is something off about me.
Fergus: At times, it feels as though I'm still alive. Maybe it's because I'm so immature, since I have yet to grow into my own as a warrior.
Scheherazade: Still alive...you say? But, you're a Servant as well, aren't you?
Fergus: Oh, yes, that much is certain. I just mean that I'm still immature, mentally and physically.
Scheherazade: ...I see. It sounds like you have a lot on your plate as well.
Scheherazade: ...Could I trouble you for that water now? I think it would go well with this cool night air.
Fergus: Of course. Oh, and would you mind if I sat next to you? I think I'd like some fresh air myself.
Scheherazade: No, not at all.
Fergus: Thank you.... The night sky is quite beautiful tonight. It's hard to believe it's actually just moss.
Fergus: You know, this place really is mysterious. We have stars even though there's no sky, and cool night air even though we're miles underground...
Fergus: ...May I ask you something, just to pass the time?
Scheherazade: ...By all means.
Fergus: This is purely hypothetical, so please feel free to answer it any way you like.
Fergus: ...What sort of nation would you like to live in?
Scheherazade: ...Why do you ask me?
Fergus: Well, to be blunt...Because you seem the most normal out of anyone here.
Fergus: After all, you're scared of both combat and dying, as most people would be.
Fergus: All of the other women here seem a bit...extreme, for lack of a better word.
Fergus: So I wanted to hear from one with more down-to-earth sensibilities.
Fergus: Of course, I'm well aware that there's no point to this question.
Fergus: This is purely to satisfy my own curiosity.
Fergus: Even if we do arrive at the truth here, it wouldn't change anything, since Ulster is already gone.
Scheherazade: ...Hehe. I can see you're quite earnest, unlike the king that I once knew.
Fergus: Oh...does that mean you once served a king when you were alive? As I recall, you–
Scheherazade: I'd prefer not to talk about that. I would rather not dwell on those memories...
Fergus: I'm sorry. I didn't mean to pry. So, about my question...
Scheherazade: ...Oh, yes, my apologies. I'm afraid I don't have an especially interesting answer, but...
Scheherazade: ...I would like to live in a nation without any danger. After all, in a place fraught with danger, it is possible I may lose my life.
Fergus: You really are afraid of dying, aren't you.
Scheherazade: ...Isn't everyone...?
Fergus: Yes...I suppose they are. Regardless, a Celtic warrior does not fear death. You see–
Fergus: Oh, sorry. I didn't mean to make small of your opinion. Maybe we should not talk about our views on the matter of life and death.
Fergus: It's not that we WANT to die, after all. I can certainly understand your position in that sense.
Fergus: Still...a nation without danger is easy to talk about, but probably very hard to create. The closest example I can think of is–
Scheherazade: ...The Land of the Young?
Fergus: That's impressive. I should have expected as much from you. The Land of the Young, or Tír na nÓg, is a Celtic myth.
Fergus: It is a land of eternity, where gods and fairies walk. It is a peaceful and joyous utopia, where there is always enough delicious fruit for everyone to eat.
Scheherazade: Yet both there and here, the threat of death is still present.
Scheherazade: Not gods who dwell underground, nor the humans in their peach-filled paradise, can escape it.
Fergus: True. That's why we've been drinking to our fallen comrades tonight.
Fergus: (Sigh) I had no idea just how difficult creating an ideal nation would be...
Fergus: ...Oh, sorry to talk your ear off. I didn't mean to have you join me in my little mental exercise.
Fergus: By way of apology, how about this?
Fergus: I may not be able to help you live in a nation without the threat of death, but I can offer a replacement.
Fergus: From now on, I won't just use my sword to protect Fujimaru.
Fergus: I'll also use it to keep you safe from the threat of death. On that, you have my word.
Fergus: I am young, inexperienced, and cannot draw my sword against a woman, but I should be better than nothing.
Scheherazade: ...Haha. That is...quite reassuring. Very well then, I will be counting on you.
Scheherazade: ...We should probably head back inside. d'Eon's sword dance has most likely lost its appeal by now.
Fergus: I'd love to hear another one of your stories sometime.
Fergus: You're a great storyteller. You make it all seem so real. Not just for me, either. You had the entire Resistance hanging on your every word too.
Scheherazade: I think that can be arranged. What sort of story would you like to hear next time?
Fergus: ...Do you happen to know any about, say, princes who grow up to become great kings?
Astolfo: Master, wake up! We've got serious trouble!
Fujimaru 1: Nnn...Just five more minutes...
Fujimaru 2: TIL...Astolfo is soft and fluffy...
Fou: Fou fou?
Astolfo: Master this is not the time to get all cuddly with Fou!!!
Mash: Astolfo, Master's safety comes first! Please get [♂ him /♀ her] out of there!
Astolfo: Yes! On it! Hup!
Fujimaru 1: Wh-what the...!?
Fujimaru 2: Everything's on fire...!?
Astolfo: I've been trying to tell you that, sleepyhead! The whole grove's gone up like a match!
Resistance Man A: Dammit! Put it out! Put it out!
Resistance Man B: We can't! The fire's spread too much!
D：Resistance Man C: How did this happen?
E：Resistance Man D: The Amazons set it on fire! Everything's going up in flames!
Rider: Keep it together!
Rider: First, make sure nobody's trapped in the flames. Things can be replaced. People can't!
Rider: And make sure we're keeping an eye on our perimeter. The enemy may take this chance to attack!
Rider: Alternatively, whoever set the fire might still be close by. If you see them, don't let them escape!
Rider: Once all that's done, gather our resources! Get everything that's still intact to a safe place!
Rider: Now get moving, or we really will lose everything to the fire!
Fergus: I'm so ashamed. I didn't even notice until it was too late.
Scheherazade: I was careless...I never thought they would attack our home base.
d'Eon: No time for regret. Servants have less to fear from the flames, so we should all help tend to the injured.
Fujimaru 1: Do it. I'll help everyone out over here.
Astolfo: Okay Master, let's get you somewhere safe!
Resistance Man A: It's...It's all gone...
Resistance Man B: They finally found our hideout.
D：Resistance Man C: Yesterday...we were all so focused on just getting away. Maybe we didn't cover our tracks well enough.
D：Resistance Man C: And...that may have let them follow us all the way here...
E：Resistance Man D: Th-then they could all show up here at any time! Wh-what're we gonna do!?
D：Resistance Man E: Don't ask me!
Rider: You know what we're going to do.
Resistance Men: Rider...
Rider: I've been telling you the same thing every day. I'm not about to change my tune now.
Rider: Never give up. Keep moving forward. That's all we can do.
Resistance Men: But...Rider...
Rider: I know. Everything's gone now. It's all burned down.
Rider: The peach trees we depended on for food. The houses we worked tirelessly to build.
Rider: The resources we collected a bit at a time from our enemies.... Even the graves of our dead comrades.
Rider: All of that is ash now. This peach tree grove was an ideal hideout, but it's gone.
Rider: And I have only one thing to say to you now, something we should all be saying:
Rider: “So what? ”
Rider: We're still here. We're still alive. Our legs can still take us wherever we want to go.
Rider: We are NOT done for yet. There is still plenty we can do.
Rider: This may be laughingly obvious, but I'll say it again. I'll say it as many times as it takes.
Rider: It's not over till it's over. As long as you don't give up, dreams DO come true.
Rider: I know that deep in my soul, better than anyone.
Resistance Men: ...
Rider: What about you? You have all been brave enough to fight alongside me all this time!
Rider: Are you just going to give up and let it end here!? Or are you going to keep facing forward with me!?
Resistance Man A: Yeah...that's true. We ARE still alive.
Resistance Man B: If we gave up now...we'd never be able to show our faces to the men who died.
D：Resistance Man C: I thought I was gonna die a slave when I first fell down here, and now look how far we've come.
D：Resistance Man C: It'd be wrong for us not to see it through to the end!
E：Resistance Man D: I'm in, Rider! I'm with you all the way!
Resistance Men: Me too!
d'Eon: Remarkable. It's as though he brought them back from the dead.
d'Eon: According to all logic and good sense, this was a hopeless situation. So perhaps it is fitting that such logic isn't what they needed to hear.
Fergus: Indeed. No amount of gentle cajoling or reasoning can move a soldier with a broken spirit.
Fergus: And yet, amazingly, a leader with the right qualities merely commanding them to get moving can be enough to motivate them all to do so.
Fergus: Rider looks to have those qualities in spades. I only wish they lent themselves to slightly less self-destructive tendencies.
Astolfo: I think the word you're looking for is charisma!
Fergus: Well, yes, I suppose so.
Fergus: Still, while kings, queens, generals, and noble warriors may all possess charisma...
Fergus: ...I think each has a very different KIND of charisma. In my estimation, Rider's is more like...
Rider: There you are. We're going to need your help again, tactician.
Rider: I might've talked a good game, but to be honest, I can't see where we go from here.
Rider: Do you have any ideas about how we can turn this situation around?
Scheherazade: ...I do. In fact, I just now thought of one.
Fujimaru 1: Good timing! Let's hear it.
Scheherazade: Simply put...we launch another sneak attack.
Scheherazade: Although, with our current numbers...I'm afraid it may be more of a suicide attack...
Rider: That'd be fine with me...as long as it doesn't turn out like it did yesterday. How do we know it won't?
Rider: I could see trying the same thing twice giving us an edge in terms of surprise, but there's no guarantee our enemy won't see through it again.
Scheherazade: It won't be the same as yesterday. There will be major differences in both our means and our method.
Scheherazade: ...This is something we can only do now that things have changed. It's a shame, though, that the changes have not been for the better.
Scheherazade: Firstly, the Resistance is smaller now. Secondly, we no longer have to worry about returning home, since we no longer have a home.
Scheherazade: And there is one last reason why I believe this attack will succeed: you, Rider.
Scheherazade: I already had some idea based on your outfit and fighting style...but after seeing how you inspired your men just now, I'm all but certain.
Scheherazade: I believe that everyone else will agree with me.
Scheherazade: You treat everyone under your command, along with yourself, as part of a single whole.
Scheherazade: You have the ability to bring them all together and lead them toward achieving a common goal.
Scheherazade: That is neither the aloof rule of a king, nor the hierarchical inspiration of a general. It is the charisma of one who is inextricably tied to those they lead.
Scheherazade: In other words...You are the captain of a ship.
Scheherazade: And in that case, there is a role that you are best suited to fill.
Scheherazade: It is a role that only you can play, precisely because of who you are.
Scheherazade: And it is the key to this operation...
Rider: ...Hah! This feels right! So incredibly right!
Rider: The feeling of plotting a course from the bow as the ship sways back and forth! The chilling splash of the water, the creaks and groans of the hull...
Rider: I still can't remember anything, but damn if this doesn't feel like coming home to an old friend!
Rider: Ah...we've got boulders up ahead! Hard aport!
Astolfo: Steady as she goes!
Fujimaru 1: Hey Astolfo. (Double take)...Wait, what!?
Fujimaru 2: It's the return of Sailor Paladin! (Stare)
Mash: Um...Astolfo, what are you doing?
Astolfo: Hm? I'm a Rider, remember? I've got the skill and everything! Steering a big old boat like this should be a piece of cake for–
Mash: No. I mean...why are you wearing that outfit?
Astolfo: Weeell, it's a sailor outfit, right? I just happened to hang on to it, so I thought it'd be perfect for a voyage like this!
Astolfo: You gotta set the tone with stuff like this, y'know? Besides, I wanna get everyone all fired up!
Astolfo: And it's working like a charm! Don'tcha think?
Mash: True...The Resistance does seem to be looking at you like you're some sort of sea goddess.
Mash: In fact, Master may be looking at you a little TOO much...Um, at any rate, please watch your skirt.
Fujimaru 1: ...(Stare)
d'Eon: N-no, Master, I'm not going to dress up as Maid Knight again!
d'Eon: That was just a one-time thing!
Fergus: At any rate, this plan appears to be going well so far.
Fergus: I'll admit I was taken aback when I first heard about it, but...
Scheherazade: There is only one advantage that the Resistance holds over El Dorado.
Scheherazade: The fact that you were the ones to topple Ys.
Scheherazade: The city itself may now be flooded, but there is still something you have gained from it...
Rider: ...Their ships.
Scheherazade: Correct. Every river here in Agartha flows back to the great eastern lake where Ys once stood.
Scheherazade: The pirates–Dahut's underlings–would sail ships upstream along these rivers to attack and plunder at a moment's notice.
Astolfo: Yup! I think we covered that earlier. But it sounds like a ton of work to paddle a big boat upstream! Did they have motors or something?
Scheherazade: No...While I was serving Dahut, I had a number of chances to ride their ships myself.
Scheherazade: They were enchanted with some form of magecraft that propelled them forward just by unfurling their sails, whether they had wind or not.
Rider: Oho, that would certainly make life easier! And that I thought such a thing at all shows I probably DO have some experience with ships. I imagine it'll all come back to me once I'm aboard one.
Scheherazade: As I said before, Rider, one of the keys to this plan is the fact that we now know you can sail.
Scheherazade: It has nothing to do with your Riding, and everything to do with your knowledge of commanding a ship, which is in its own way, a kind of living thing.
Scheherazade: And...unfortunately, it is only possible now that the Resistance is small enough to fit aboard one ship.
Scheherazade: Granted, it might be more accurate to say that they no longer have any choice but to do so, as their home has been burned down.
Fergus: I agree. With our current numbers, there won't be much point in leaving anyone behind. If we're going to attack, we should all do so together.
Scheherazade: All of this means that, with things as they are now, we can use a single Ys ship, and a river that leads into the heart of the jungle...
Scheherazade: ...to launch an attack on the enemy's base in El Dorado with the entire remaining Resistance.
Scheherazade: This will be a surgical strike, concentrating all of our power on the enemy's most vulnerable point. I believe that is our only chance at victory.
Scheherazade: ...Of course, if this plan fails...then we will all...end up...dead...
Rider: Now don't go worrying about that. You can't move forward if you keep turning around to look behind.
Rider: Besides...remember what we're about to ride.
Rider: Ships only move in one direction, and it isn't backwards.
Rider: That's it. Full speed ahead! Haha, I must say, it feels wonderful to sail upstream at top speed!
Rider: This must be a first for me, whether in life or as a Servant! ...Hm!?
Astolfo: Heeey! There's a bridge–err...some kinda barrier ahead! What do we do now!?
Rider: I thought we might run into something like this. Not to worry! We do the same thing we did with the bridges: go right through them!
Astolfo: What about the Amazons on it!?
Rider: No matter! It'll just be a little more work than usual!
Rider: Just take out the ones that get in our way. The important thing is securing a route forward!
d'Eon: Understood. We'll deal with the enemies while the Resistance focuses on destroying the barrier!
Scheherazade: What should I do...? I want to hide in the cabin so I don't die from a wayward arrow...
Scheherazade: But if I do that, I won't be able to help prevent the ship from sinking...What a dilemma.
d'Eon: Your pessimism truly is every bit as potent and enduring as Rider's optimism.
Fergus: Don't worry. I'll devote myself to keeping Fujimaru, you, and the entire rear guard safe. I promise.
d'Eon: At any rate, now is not the time to hold back! We must fight with all our strength! If this ship sinks, it will truly be over for us!
Scheherazade: Right...Very well then, I shall do my best. At least enough to ensure that I don't die.
Astolfo: All right, we made it through!
d'Eon: That is all well and good, but what about the Amazons that escaped? Won't they raise an alarm?
Rider: They might've already done that after catching sight of us from the shore. There's no point worrying about that sort of thing now.
Rider: We just have to get to El Dorado before anyone brings word of our attack!
Fergus: So, I know we're supposed to defeat that Berserker if she's there...but what if she isn't?
Rider: Then it'll be that much easier to take out their base.
Rider: Based on our recon, El Dorado's where the Amazons are keeping most of their men. What's more, they're all strong and healthy men, just the way they like.
Rider: Once we free them, they'll join our side and stop the enemy from multiplying. Two birds, one stone.
Rider: We'll also be able to load up on supplies, which will make our next move that much easier.
Rider: So right now, we keep moving full speed ahead!
Astolfo: Steady as she goes! Wait, I see another barrier up ahead!
Rider: No surprise there. The Amazons probably built a few of them to ward off the Ys pirates.
Rider: But I bet they didn't count on guys like us charging in at full steam! Now: RAMMING SPEED!
d'Eon: ...! Master, look! There, beyond those trees!
Fujimaru 1: That looks like...a golden temple!
Fujimaru 2: That's sure GOLDEN!
Mash: Indeed. That temple–which certainly looks like it leapt straight out of Kintoki's dreams–seems to be the heart of El Dorado!
Rider: There it is! We've finally made it to El Dorado! Lay anchor on the shore nearest the temple! We'll take the shortest possible route to–
Rider: ...What's going on?
Astolfo: The ship's...shaking. Is something going on with the river? ...No, wait. There's something IN the river.
Fergus: ...Oh no. I recognize this sensation!
d'Eon: Astolfo, you need to stop the ship immediately! Hold on to me, Master...He's about to emerge!
Scheherazade: No...! Why now...of all times!?
Fujimaru 1: Megalos!
Rider: Shit! Is this just bad luck, or did someone put him here on purpose!?
d'Eon: Could the Amazons have placed him here as a last line of defense? That would be tremendously unfortunate for us if that were the case.
Astolfo: Hey, wait, didn't they fight in the Nightless City? Doesn't seem like they'd suddenly be friends now!
Scheherazade: Regardless of why he's here...he is far too dangerous. We must avoid fighting him!
Fergus: I'm afraid it doesn't look like we have a choice. He seems dead set on fighting us.
Rider: This is our last chance to reach El Dorado! We can't fall back, and we can't give up!
Rider: Up till now, we've had no choice but to run from him...but that was back when I didn't have a ship.
Rider: Especially one with so many Servants aboard!
Rider: Get ready! We're about to fight our way through the biggest storm of our lives!
Fujimaru 1: He's too damn strong!
Fujimaru 2: We've hardly scratched him!
Fergus: Just what I'd expect from one of the greatest Greek heroes! I couldn't ask for a worthier opponent!
Astolfo: Uwaa...You're EXCITED about this? He's so tough I had to stop playing Sailor Paladin and change back into my real outfit again!
d'Eon: Even before his Berserker enhancement,his power as a Heroic Spirit was incredible...
d'Eon: ...but when we consider the sheer magnitude of strength added to his usual with this giant form...
Mash: ...Indeed. On top of all that, Megalos seems to be in an endlessly rampaging state, and shows no signs of slowing down at all.
Mash: In essence, he appears to have gone ultra-berserk. That would explain why he's acting like a monster.
Da Vinci: It's actually kind of impressive, in a scary, monstrous sort of way.
Da Vinci: You've done a fair amount of damage to him, but he's still incredibly dangerous. Keep your guard up.
Scheherazade: This is terrible...Just one strike from that monster would easily be enough to kill us.
Rider: Indeed...He's like a living storm.
Rider: His roar is like a thunderclap, shaking the entire ship. His arms are like the wind, raging tirelessly to break the mast.
Rider: He throws wave after wave at us. He stands dark and unyielding, blocking our way as far as we can see...
Rider: ...Oh yes. I know my storms.
Rider: And you're the worst kind there is: one that shows up just when the voyage is going well and does everything it can to sink us.
Rider: Hah, I'm actually grateful to you. Thanks to you tossing us around so much I almost threw up...
Rider: ...I finally remembered that I've gotten through storms like you countless times!
Fujimaru 1: Rider, did you regain your memories!?
Mash: I'm picking up a unique magical energy pattern! This is...Rider's Noble Phantasm!?
Rider: I don't care what sort of hero you used to be. As long as you stand in my way, you're no more than just another storm to me.
Rider: So stay out of my way! The New World I've been dreaming of is finally within my reach!
Rider: I'm putting my anchor down right here. I will show this storm that I'm already at my destination!
Rider: This marks the first step to the end of my long voyage!
Rider: Santa María Drop Anchor!
Astolfo: Whoa. There's another ship here and it's coming right up to us! It just sent our anchor flying!
d'Eon: That must be Rider's Noble Phantasm! It's holding Megalos in place!
Megalos: – ,
Da Vinci: “Santa María Drop Anchor”? I knew it. So that's who he is...
Fujimaru 1: You've figured out his True Name, Da Vinci?
Da Vinci: Sure have. I think you'll recognize the name, too. La Santa María was the ship he's most famous for...
Da Vinci: He sailed it across the Atlantic Ocean, and “discovered” the New World–at least as far as Europe was concerned–in the 15th century.
Da Vinci: ...You're Christopher Columbus, aren't you?
H：Columbus: That's right. I finally remembered my name. I'm Columbus.
Mash: Um, it's great that Rider has his memories back...but I think we have more urgent matters to attend to!
Fujimaru 1: You're right! Now's our chance!
Fujimaru 2: Let's get him!
Fergus: I do have reservations about cutting down an opponent bound in chains...But I suppose I should think of this more as slaying a monster than as a duel!
Da Vinci: (Now that I know Rider is Columbus, I have some concerns...But like Mash said, we definitely have more urgent matters to attend to right now! )
Da Vinci: Be careful, everyone! Just because he's tied up doesn't mean he's not still a threat!
Columbus: Dammit. I can't believe he's still this strong even tied up!
Columbus: Hurry and finish him off! I can't keep this anchor out forever!
d'Eon: We should have wounded him quite grievously by now! Just a little more and–oh no!
Astolfo: Aw crap, Amazons on the shore! And–
Fujimaru 1: The Berserker too!
Fujimaru 2: The queen too!
Columbus: ...The hell!? It's way too soon for her to be showing up!
Scheherazade: ...That's right. I should have realized it sooner. Of course she would come here.
Fujimaru 1: Why's that...?
Scheherazade: Based on previous observations, the Berserker of El Dorado seems concerned with expanding her territory.
Scheherazade: But we have also seen her behave in a manner counter to that simple explanation.
Scheherazade: ...Wherever Megalos appears, she rushes in to battle him.
Scheherazade: She does so regardless of where she currently is, or what her current situation may be...as though there is nothing that matters to her more.
d'Eon: Wait. Something appears off about her.
Berserker: Ah, aah, aaahhh.
d'Eon: The Berserker of El Dorado just started raging...and she's charging right at us!
Astolfo: No, wait! She's not going for us! I think she's going for Megalos!
Berserker: I know your scent! It's you! I'll kill you! That's why I...Raaahhh!
Berserker: I'll kill you! I'LL KILL YOU!!! I swear I'LL KILL YOU...ACHILLES!!!
Astolfo: Huh!? Dunno why, but I'm pretty sure she's got the wrong guy...
Fergus: She certainly doesn't seem to think so, judging from how fiercely she's attacking him. She's behaving more like a wild beast than a person.
d'Eon: Achilles...as in the Greek hero? But, isn't that...
Mash: ...His Spirit Origin pattern may be much, much larger, but he is still definitely Heracles.
Mash: His Noble Phantasm and fighting style all bear that out.
Mash: So then, why should she think otherwise?
Da Vinci: I can only surmise that she's mistaken him for Achilles.
Da Vinci: If so, it's no great shock. Look at her. She's as berserk as Berserkers come.
Da Vinci: The mere fact that they are both Greek heroes–his scent alone–is enough to get her to mistake him for the object of her hatred.
Da Vinci: That is how much she hates Achilles. Even a vaguely similar scent is enough to drive her utterly berserk.
Da Vinci: Indeed, her raging hatred of Achilles is the very foundation of her existence as a Heroic Spirit.
Fujimaru 1: Wait...You figured out her True Name?
Da Vinci: Yup. Actually, this was one of the possibilities I considered at the start. But her actions recently made me certain of who she is.
Da Vinci: After that war cry, I'd say it's safe to assume she was queen of the Amazons in life.
Da Vinci: Her true name is...
Fujimaru 1: Penthesilea.
Da Vinci: Nailed it. I see you know your history, Fujimaru.
Fujimaru 2: Hippolyta?
Da Vinci: Close, but no cigar. That's the name of her older sister. This is another of the Amazons' queens.
Da Vinci: That's right...Her name is Penthesilea.
Da Vinci: The queen of the Amazons, known far and wide for her strength and beauty.
Da Vinci: She came to Troy's aid in the Trojan War after Hektor was killed and the Achaeans seemed about to win. Later, she died in a duel against Achilles.
E：Penthesilea: A...Achilles...Achilles, you say?
Resistance: Aah! S-stay back!
Columbus: Don't rile her up! Shit...looks like I was too late...
E：Penthesilea: So...you who would stop me from killing Achilles are also Achilles. Then I shall kill ALL OF YOU!
Columbus: Oh no! I can't hold him any longer!
Astolfo: Anyone else getting giant monster movie flashbacks!?
Fergus: Two Berserkers, one large, one small, each flailing about and attacking anything that gets too close...This really does feel like a quest to slay a monster.
d'Eon: I was hoping they would each take the other out...but it seems they mean to come after us!
Mash: Focus on survival first and foremost! Be careful, Master. This is going to be a dangerous battle!
Scheherazade: I couldn't agree more. Ah, I wish I could run away...I don't think dogeza will work on them...
Columbus: Dammit! I'm spent!
Astolfo: Uh oh. Captain, the ship can't take any more of this!
d'Eon: ...! They're coming from above! Master, this way!
Mash: Master...Master! Please, hang in there, Master...!
Section 12: Unpaintable Beauty
Fujimaru 1: Ugh...
Fujimaru 2: Where am I...?
Astolfo: Oh good, you're up, Master. How are you feeling? Does it hurt anywhere?
Fujimaru 1: I don't think so.
Fujimaru 2: Just a little headache...
Astolfo: I thiiink that's 'cause you weren't getting any oxygen for a bit! Know what you do for injuries like this?
Astolfo: Ouchies...begone! (Pat pat) Did that help?
Astolfo: Aaanyway, I'm glad you woke up so fast! My lap must be a super comfy pillow, huh!?
Fujimaru 1: ...!
Astolfo: Aw, no need to be embarrassed!
d'Eon: My prayer is more likely to have had healing properties than your lap, Astolfo.
Fergus: Good morning, Master.
Fergus: I'm glad to see you weren't injured. Come on, another day awaits!
d'Eon: Wait, Fergus. Fujimaru is not quite so durable as you are.
d'Eon: We should first give [♂ him /♀ her] time to grasp the situation at hand. Can you stand, Fujimaru?
Columbus: You seem all right to me. Good. Can't have you dying on me just yet.
Scheherazade: Indeed...Not dying is truly a wonderful thing.
Fujimaru 1: Let me sit down a moment and collect myself.
Fujimaru 1: Where are we? What happened after everything...?
d'Eon: Our ship was destroyed in the aftermath of their battle, and we were all washed overboard, including you.
Astolfo: Of course, we tried to pull you out of the water...but the river's current was kind of weird.
Astolfo: I mean, it'd have to be, right? Normally, it'd be pretty easy for a Servant to hop on in and bring their Master back to shore!
Fergus: But instead, we were unable to fight back against the current...and ended up here.
Fergus: And unfortunately, none of us is clear on where “here” is.
Scheherazade: Given the river's flow, and the lay of the land, I believe we must be somewhere in the east lake...but I'm afraid that's all I can say.
Columbus: I never would've guessed a place like this could exist here. I mean, a castle, in the middle of a lake?
d'Eon: There appears to be a dome of some sort surrounding this place providing us with air. I imagine it's a form of magecraft.
d'Eon: What a strange place this is. I'm not even sure what to call it. Underwater Castle? Lakebottom Castle?
Fujimaru 1: This has got to be...The Dragon Palace.
Astolfo: Oooh, hey! I remember that place! Didn't Touta tell us about it one time over rice with a side of...rice?
Scheherazade: I know of it too. It's a place that appears in an old Japanese tale.
Astolfo: I think Touta said he'd been there once, too! But...ah, I dunno!
Astolfo: Okay! The Dragon Palace it is! Now, aaanyway...See anything weird, Master?
Astolfo: Hey Master, you might wanna take a look at that rock under your butt!
Fujimaru 1: Under my butt?
Fujimaru 1: It's not a rock! Just a guy that looks like one!
Fujimaru 2: I'm sorry, I'm sorry! Please don't hurt me!
Fergus: No need to worry, Fujimaru. He's not moving anymore.
Fergus: Since he'd been gravely wounded in our prior battle, the other Berserker...Penthesilea, right?
Fergus: Anyway, that must have given her enough of an advantage to come out on top.
Fergus: That said, the last time I saw her, she was covered in cuts and bruises, and yet somehow he still doesn't have a scratch on him.
d'Eon: It's odd that he has not disappeared, but instead appears to have simply ceased functioning.
d'Eon: I am uncertain whether he will awaken or not, but for the moment, he poses no danger.
d'Eon: Of course, we could always lop off his head now just to be certain.
Fergus: I'm sorry, but even as I am now, my warrior's pride simply won't permit that.
d'Eon: It just feels wrong to you, eh. I can understand that.
d'Eon: At any rate, we have left him out here to serve as your chair for the time being.
Fujimaru 1: Nope nope nope nope nope...
Columbus: So...Now what?
Columbus: There are fewer Resistance members now than ever. Only a few of them washed up here with us.
Astolfo: Hmm. Well, now that Master's woken up and all, how 'bout we explore the palace thing!
Astolfo: I mean, we gotta get outta here and all, and there could even be some cool treasure inside!
Columbus: Haha, treasure, eh. I like the sound of that. I certainly wouldn't mind finding some sort of trinket that could turn the tide for us!
Fujimaru 1: Why don't we ask Mash to find a way out of here?
d'Eon: Oh yes, I almost forgot to mention this. Unfortunately, it seems we have been temporarily cut off from Chaldea, so we cannot ask them anything.
d'Eon: Of course, I do not know if it is because we are underwater, or if it is something else...
d'Eon: Regardless, I also believe we should explore this palace, Master. Standing around chit-chatting certainly won't get us anywhere.
Fujimaru 1: Good point. In that case–
A：???: No need for that.
d'Eon: Ah! You...!?
A：???: No need for that.
d'Eon: Ah! You...!?
Astolfo: She's alive!?
Astolfo: Oooh, yeah. No body, no death! We only saw her get swept up in Ys! She must've gotten swept down here just like us!
Dahut: Drifted here? No, I always knew about this place. This is another paradise of mine.
Dahut: It is my last bastion, something I kept on hand in case Ys was ever destroyed.
Dahut: I was planning to rest here while my injuries healed and my magical energy was replenished.
Dahut: But then you came along! What are YOU all doing here!?
Dahut: I've been waiting for what feels like an eternity. I wanted to take something so badly, but there was nothing here to take!
Dahut: Yes, that's right.
Dahut: I didn't lord over the dull Nightless City, where its subjects suppress their desires. Nor did I command the Amazons of El Dorado, a tribe so barbaric they wouldn't get self-denial if it jumped up and bit them.
Dahut: I was the beautiful ruler of Ys. I brought my people happiness by insisting that none deny herself!
Dahut: So why...Why did I end up like this?
Astolfo: Uh...I think she's just a liiittle off!
d'Eon: Indeed. She appears rather...distraught?
Dahut: You mean to take from me? No! That won't be happening. I'm the one who will be doing the taking.
Dahut: I will deny myself no longer! In fact, doing so would be wrong! That, I believe, is the key to happiness!
Dahut: ...So I will take your freedom. Your dignity. Your vitality. Your hope.
Dahut: I will take you to bed.
Dahut: Nghh...My head hurts.
Dahut: I...I am...a taker. That is...how I should be. How any...pirate...should be...
Dahut: Man. Woman. I don't care. I just want to take someone to bed.
Dahut: I have no need of pride or ambition. Nor do I need hope or purpose.
Dahut: I do not need bravery...I do not need courage...All I need is to take...To plunder...
Dahut: So I refuse to wait any longer! I'm going to take you for myself...Soon, you shall all be mine!
Columbus: Looks like she's finally showing her true colors! Still...
Astolfo: Yup, she's nuts! If she's gonna attack, we'll have to fight back! Give us your orders, Master!
d'Eon: That wound is fatal. Victory is ours.
A：Dahut: Huh...? The hell's all this?
A：Dahut: I finally get this fog outta my head, but now everything's all weird...
A：Dahut: And what's with these clothes? Definitely not my kinda style. Haha...
Fujimaru 1: Dahut...?
Fujimaru 2: Drake...?
Dahut? : Huh? I feel like you and I have met before somewhere...Ah well, it doesn't matter.
Dahut? : I knew what I was getting into when I decided to be a pirate. If we lose a fight, we lose our treasure. That's just how it works.
Dahut? : I'd rather it was a treasure map that makes you jump through all sorts of hoops to find the booty...but it looks like I don't get a say in that.
Dahut? : Ugh, guess I'm out of the grand adventure game for the time being...Here. It ain't much, but why don'tcha take this box with you.
Astolfo: ...Hey, you were using this thingy while we fought, right? What's it do?
Dahut? : Hell if I know. Just kinda had it on me. All I can tell you is that it's treasure I found here.
Dahut? : You oughta be able to find some more in that castle over there. Since you managed to beat me, you get to use 'em how you see fit.
Astolfo: Yaaay! Someone's feeling generous!
Astolfo: Weeell, I guess you WERE all about the whole take, take, take thing, and didn't much care about what you'd already took, took, took!
Astolfo: So I guess it kinda makes sense you'd just give it all away!
Dahut? : Hm? What're you talking about? I just like wasting the treasure I take as awesomely as I can.
Dahut? : If I hadn't lost, I'd be blowing it all on booze and drinking every last drop–(Cough, hack) ...
Dahut? : ...Damn, this sucks. I only just got here, and now I've gotta go again...
d'Eon: What...WAS that?
Fergus: I...don't know...
Columbus: Whatever she was, she's gone now. The big question is, what's inside this box. Let's see now–
Fujimaru 1: Wait! I don't want to grow old just yet!
Scheherazade: It's all right...I was watching Dahut use it, and I don't think opening it will cause any sudden aging.
Scheherazade: In fact, I believe this Tamatebako may just be exactly what we need...
Scheherazade: Well, I have read many books...While I am unsure of the details, I believe I have an idea of what this place is.
Scheherazade: I believe you know it as well, Fujimaru. Urashima Tarou. The Dragon Palace. Otohime. And...the Tamatebako.
Fujimaru 1: Of course! I read about it in a picture book!
Scheherazade: Otohime, the princess of the undersea Dragon Palace, invited Urashima Tarou to her palace, and gave him the Tamatebako when he returned to land.
Fujimaru 1: But she also told him not to open it.
Astolfo: Then what's the point?
Scheherazade: Indeed. That would make no sense whatsoever. Therefore, I believe the correct interpretation is that it was not meant to be opened lightly.
Scheherazade: In other words, the Tamatebako is most likely something that can only be used once.
Scheherazade: And so, when Urashima Tarou returned to land, and learned that far more time had passed than what he had experienced in the Dragon Palace...
Scheherazade: ...he opened the Tamatebako in desperation, and transformed into an old man...Or so the story goes.
Scheherazade: However...I think that his sadness over how much older others had grown may have been the reason why he opened the box.
Scheherazade: That is to say, his transformation occurred because he wanted to reconcile the difference in the time that passed for himself and the outside world.
Fujimaru 1: So, basically...he wished to become old?
Scheherazade: Exactly. He WISHED for it. If you might permit me to make a bit of an intuitive leap...
Scheherazade: The Tamatebako grant wishes.
Scheherazade: I believe they contain a mass of highly concentrated magical energy...Energy that can be used in any way the wish-maker desires.
Scheherazade: The Tamatebako senses the wish of the one who opens it, then uses its vast magical energy as fuel to create the desired phenomena.
Scheherazade: In essence...I believe you can think of them as single-use wish granters.
Astolfo: Okay, so...basically, they're not actually physical items, but super-duper magical energy doodads that can be used for anything?
Scheherazade: Essentially, yes. Though I imagine there are still some limits on what they can do.
Scheherazade: Of course, if a mage or Servant who could make full use of its magical energy were to open one...
Scheherazade: ...it would probably serve a function closer to Fujimaru's Command Spells than a wish granter.
Fujimaru 1: Single-use Command Spells, huh...Sounds great!
Fujimaru 2: Be nice if we found a Holy Grail like that too.
d'Eon: Now I see. So Dahut must have been using one simply to enhance her strength.
d'Eon: In her case, that was likely the only option she had available. But I imagine we could find any number of alternative uses for it.
Astolfo: Oooh, nice! I bet we could do really cool stuff with it! Like...oh, oh, oh! Could we use it to power Noble Phantasms we can't normally use?
d'Eon: We won't know unless we try, but I believe it would be worth the attempt.
d'Eon: If it works, we may be able to safely employ techniques that we normally avoid using so as not to drain Master's magical energy.
Fergus: Still...Too bad you can only use it once. Though it does make sense. You can't expect to keep drinking liquor from the same bottle forever, after all.
Columbus: Given what Dahut was saying, maybe there are more Tamatebako to be found in that palace place.
Columbus: Even if they are single-use, if we can get several of them, they should still be pretty useful, right?
Columbus: Hahaha...Looks like our luck is finally changing!
Columbus: Like I always say, you never know what might happen as long as you don't give up. Turns out my ship sinking wasn't such a bad thing after all! Not that I'd want to go through it again, though!
Fou: Fou fou!
Columbus: ...Hang on.
Columbus: I think I just got an idea as to how we can go about fighting back.
Fujimaru 1: Now you're talking!
Fujimaru 2: Great! What is it!?
Columbus: Scheherazade, you're a Caster, right? Let me ask you this...
Columbus: If you had the magical energy from one of these wish-granter Command Spell things...do you think you'd be able to put reins on this guy?
Scheherazade: I...suppose that would depend on what form such a thing would take, and how it might be used...
Columbus: I'm not talking about anything complicated. Just something like a simple contract. As long as he'd start obeying a few basic commands, that'd do.
Columbus: “Attack,” “Stop attacking,” “Go forward,” “Stay”...That sort of thing.
Columbus: It'd be nice if you could get him to tell friend from foe, but if that's asking too much...Oh, well...
d'Eon: So you mean to use Megalos...as a military asset for our side?
Columbus: If there's a chance we can use him, then we should. This would give us a real chance at victory.
Columbus: After all, our only other assets now are we Servants...and those men who were lucky enough to be washed up here with us.
Columbus: And there are precious few of us left.
H：Resistance Man A: Rider...Uh, I mean, Mr. Columbus...
F：Resistance Man B: We could never have come this far without you. We'll stick with you to the end.
H：Resistance Man C: Besides, it's not like we have a home to go back to anymore. We'll do whatever you say.
Columbus: Heh...Thank you, men. So, how about it, Caster?
Scheherazade: If a simple command system would suffice...yes, I believe it's possible. It would not be without risk.
Scheherazade: And, if we are to do this, we must hurry.
Scheherazade: He seems to be waking up, however slowly.
Scheherazade: In essence, it feels almost as if he is...rebooting.
Astolfo: Rebooting and commands, huh. I mean, I know he's kinda more like a wild beast than a guy...
Astolfo: ...but the idea of using a great hero like this as some sorta robo-zombie thing just seems wrong to me.
Astolfo: Course, I kinda doubt we could just...talk him over to our side...What do you say, Master?
Fujimaru 1: ...I think we need Megalos's power.
Fujimaru 2: I don't see any other options.
d'Eon: If that is what you decide, Master, we will accept it. But do be careful, Scheherazade.
Fujimaru 1: It's okay, I trust her.
Fujimaru 2: In that case...one simple contract, please.
Columbus: Whoa whoa, hang on there. Of course there's going to be risks.
Columbus: That's why I'll be the one to forge this contract.
Columbus: You don't want to see your Master's body blown to bits if something goes wrong, right?
Columbus: Simple or not, whoever forges this contract is going to be magically linked to this creature. None of us really has any idea what that could do.
Columbus: If something happened to Master, all you Servants contracted to [♂ him /♀ her] would be gone too. But I'm just a Rogue Servant.
Columbus: This way, if anything happens, it'll affect me, and me alone.
Astolfo: Well...True, but...
Fujimaru 1: I don't want you blown to bits either, Columbus.
Columbus: Hahaha, don't worry, I don't plan on it. I think I've got a pretty good chance of success.
Columbus: After all...I've always had good luck.
Columbus: I was lucky enough to get the money I needed for my voyage, lucky enough to actually cross the Atlantic, and lucky enough to make it back in one piece!
Columbus: If there's two things I'm confident about, it's my tenacity, and my luck. Hell, they're all I've got!
Columbus: Now come on, Scheherazade! We're running out of time!
Scheherazade: ...Very well.
Fujimaru 1: Okay...But stop if anything goes wrong!
Scheherazade: Of course. I hope very much that nobody dies...especially me.
Scheherazade: Very well then. I shall open this first Tamatebako and begin the spell!
Astolfo: Master, Master! We found a lifeboat! I knew there had to be one around here!
Astolfo: It's in some kinda bubble-thing, but I think I can still use my Riding skill to drive–er, pilot it!
Fujimaru 1: Good boy. There's a good Servant.
Astolfo: Aww, thanks! Hehe, I'm glad you're happy, Master!
Fujimaru 2: Well done! You deserve a candy.
Astolfo: Hey, wait, isn't that how you thanked Wu Zetian that one time? Oh well, it's still yummy!
d'Eon: It makes sense that Dahut would have at least one–and likely more–means of escape if she planned on using this palace as a hidden fortress.
d'Eon: Now we should be able to return to the surface.
Fergus: I took a quick look around the castle, and I have great news.
Fergus: It's full of monsters! Dahut must have released them to serve as guard dogs.
Astolfo: Uh, how is THAT great news!?
Fergus: Really? I think this is much better than just looking around for more Tamatebako.
Fergus: It'll keep things interesting if nothing else, and it should also make for good training...
Scheherazade: I cannot fathom why someone would put themselves in such danger...You could end up dead.
Columbus: Anyway, these Tamatebako are a precious resource. The more we can gather, the more help they'll be later.
Columbus: So I'd like to find as many as we can before we return to the surface. That is, assuming there are any left.
d'Eon: Indeed. As to how long we spend searching this place for Tamatebako and when we depart for the surface...
d'Eon: ...Well, that I leave for Master to decide. No matter when we return, please do keep this in mind:
d'Eon: Once we return...
Columbus: That's right. Once we return, that's when we men who don't know when to give up strike back!
Section 13: Decisive Battle in El Dorado
Amazon: Your Majesty!? Are you all right? Are you feeling ill!?
Penthesilea: That smell. The smell of Achilles...
Penthesilea: But...something's not right. It's TOO potent. Where is it coming from...?
Astolfo: Okeydokey, this is our stop! Up we go!
Columbus: Perfect positioning! Now take us ashore! We'll charge in, fast as we can, just as soon as we disembark!
Columbus: Look, the golden heart of El Dorado is right in front of us! Haha, we've got 'em by the throat now!
Mash: ...ster? Master!?
Mash: Can you hear me, Master!? Please come in!
Fujimaru 1: Eh? Who's this? Sounds like my trusty kouhai!
Mash: This IS your trusty kouhai, Master! It's me, Mash Kyrielight! Oh, thank goodness!
Fujimaru 2: Ahh...Your voice really puts me at ease, Mash.
Mash: I-it does? W-well, it's nice to hear that...But anyway...
Mash: I'm so glad you're all right, Master! You too, Fou!
Mash: I've been trying to reach you all this time, and it looks like our connection's finally fixed.
Holmes: It's just as I told you, Ms. Kyrielight. Those technical difficulties were merely temporary. There was no cause for concern.
Fujimaru 1: Holmes? You're there too...?
Holmes: Yes, well, I WAS planning on relaxing with my pipe in my quarters.
Holmes: But when one is told that Master is in danger, that all of Chaldea's resources must be mustered to resolve the situation posthaste...
Holmes: ...and that one would be a heartless beast if one were to refuse to offer assistance in this time of crisis...one tends to feel obligated to comply.
Holmes: Though I WAS adamant from the start that they were making a big to-do of nothing, as there was never any issue with your vital signs.
Holmes: At this moment, my only conclusion is that she cares for you a great deal.
d'Eon: We have been down in the Dragon Palace all this time. Our connection must have been reestablished once we emerged from the water.
Mash: The Dragon Palace?
Mash: I-I have so many questions, but for now...
Da Vinci: Yes, let's start with that big fellow who appears to have joined your side.
Da Vinci: I'm impressed. How did you pull that off?
Fujimaru 1: Well...
Mash: The Dragon Palace and Tamatebako...So that's what you discovered while we were out of contact.
Da Vinci: ...And this was all Columbus's idea, eh.
Fujimaru 1: Is everything okay, you two?
Mash: ...Yes, Master, it's fine. There's nothing we can do about it at this point.
Holmes: An entire world miles beneath the ground, eh. It sounds like something out of a Jules Verne novel.
Holmes: As something of an explorer myself, the idea certainly piques my interest.
Holmes: And it would hardly be sporting of me to haggle over my fee if I were to leave after merely confirming that communications were back online.
Holmes: So I think I shall continue to listen to this tale of an underground world for the time being.
Holmes: Worry not. I won't do anything out of turn to help bring about this tale's conclusion. Though I may venture an opinion if I start to feel bored.
Columbus: Okay, enough talk! We need to hurry if we're going to take out the Amazon queen once and for all!
Columbus: Come on! Let's get inside and put the plan into motion before the other Amazons get here!
Mash: ...All right. Then please tell us the plan on the way. We'll help you out as much as we can!
Da Vinci: ...Indeed. I'd better tell you what I can while we have the chance...
Columbus: Hey there, queenie. We're back.
Penthesilea: Achilles! You dare show yourself before me once again...!?
Penthesilea: I've not forgotten what you did to me. Only your death will set right the humiliation I suffered at your hands in Troy!
Penthesilea: So I will kill you myself...as I was before I ever joined that accursed war!
Columbus: Hm...? How odd. I've never seen her keep her cool in front of Megalos like this.
Columbus: Maybe it's got something to do with the contract keeping his bloodlust in check.
Astolfo: Well, she's still not making a whole lotta sense!
Fujimaru 1: Either way, we've got to keep our guard up.
Fujimaru 2: There's no telling when she might go berserk!
d'Eon: We must remain vigilant. She may appear as a young girl, but she is in fact a highly skilled warrior.
Penthesilea: Appear as a young girl? Hehe, hahahaha. Well said, Achilles.
Penthesilea: That...THAT is why I, now, will be the one to kill you!
Mash: It sounds like...she thinks everyone is Achilles now. She doesn't even find it strange that she's seeing more than one of him.
Mash: If I'm right about that, then she's completely lost her mind!
Penthesilea: ...Achilles. I know why you're here. You mean to kill my subordinates again, don't you.
Penthesilea: You shall not have that chance. This time, victory shall be ours.
Penthesilea: Listen once more to this fearsome war cry.
Penthesilea: The war cry that caused the Achaeans to throw down their swords and beg for their lives in terror!
Scheherazade: These voices...I can hear still them even from this distance!
d'Eon: It is just like before...The war cry that causes ordinary Amazons to go berserk!
Penthesilea: Yes...Rage, my children. Let that rage pour out of you. That is the key to awakening our divine blood–the blood of our father Ares.
Penthesilea: You cannot win this time, Achilles! You will die by my hand...but that is not all...
Penthesilea: During the battle of Troy, I had but twelve warriors at my side.
Penthesilea: But now, my warriors of El Dorado number no less than one hundred times that! You are hopelessly outmatched in every way!
Fergus: (I knew it. The sort of nation they're trying to create...
Fergus: ...is like a single organism, where the mightiest stand on top, and all others follow their leader unquestioningly! What a formidable opponent! )
Columbus: Hey! Don't stop now! We expected this to happen!
Columbus: We've got no choice but to stick with the plan!
Astolfo: Oh, right. Sorry! Didn't mean to stand around getting all googly-eyed over this!
d'Eon: I do have some concerns about leaving the rest of you here...but I suppose there's nothing to be done.
d'Eon: ...Fergus, Scheherazade, Master.
d'Eon: We shall return as soon as we have concluded our business, so...do be careful.
Fujimaru 1: ...You too.
Fujimaru 2: ...See you later.
Astolfo: Aw, come on, Master. Don't say stuff like that.
d'Eon: Agreed. It sounds like you are trying to come up with stoic last words, believing you won't see us again.
Astolfo: 'Kay! Bye for now!
Fergus: ...Not a care in the world between them, huh. Ah well, that's just like them. One of them, at least.
Mash: I was amazed when I heard they volunteered for this...
Mash: ...but I can practically hear the determination behind that happy front, even just over this transmission.
Mash: I have no doubt they'll see their task through to the end.
Mash: So let's trust them, and do our best to do what we need to get done here, Master.
Scheherazade: (...I can't believe it. I could never do such a thing. I'd be far too scared of dying. )
Scheherazade: (Do those two truly mean...)
Scheherazade: (...to hold back so many Amazons all on their own!? )
Astolfo: That's a lotta yelling. Yep.
Astolfo: This's gonna suuuck...
d'Eon: Be that as it may...Somebody has to hold the Amazons at bay, or the others will have no chance to defeat Penthesilea.
d'Eon: Even with Megalos on their side, they'd be overwhelmed in terms of sheer numbers.
Astolfo: Yeah, I know. But...
Astolfo: Are you sure you're good with this, Knight of the White Lily...?
Astolfo: Usually when people ask me to do stuff it's little, lighthearted stuff. Y'know, “Pleeease, I'm in trouble and I need your help...”
Astolfo: Not so much the super-serious, head-to-head, life-or-death battle things. So, really, I'm fine with this.
Astolfo: But this kinda isn't your thing. You're all about using your sword to protect Master, right?
d'Eon: Indeed. But at this moment, I happen to be the right person in the right place. And besides...
d'Eon: ...I may never get another good chance to say this,so I will say it now.
d'Eon: Astolfo. You are one of the Twelve Paladins of Charlemagne, a hero to the kingdom of the Franks. Tales of your exploits lulled me to sleep as a child.
d'Eon: If not for you and the other paladins, the kingdom of France might not have existed, and none of us would ever have been born.
d'Eon: You Paladins paved the way for the other knights of France who followed in your footsteps. In a way, you were the exemplar for all we wished to be.
Astolfo: You...really think so?
d'Eon: Haha. And now that I stand by your side, facing down an army of hundreds...
d'Eon: ...it truly feels as though I have become a part of one of those stories myself.
d'Eon: It may be immodest of me to say so under these circumstances, but if I might be frank...I am positively overflowing with excitement.
Astolfo: Haha, immodest, huh. Sounds great to me!
Astolfo: Well, speaking as your great exemplar who maaay not be the sharpest bulb in the toolbox, I'll say that it's fine to enjoy yourself whenever you can!
Astolfo: So, how 'bout we get goin'!?
Astolfo: It's just the two of us and one biiig audience, so let's give 'em one helluva show!
d'Eon: Indeed...Now is the time to open the Tamatebako! Our wish: to make use of our secret Noble Phantasms!
Amazon: – ...!?
Astolfo: Ugh, so much shouting. It's too bad they don't use a battle song, especially one on par with the red Saber or the dragon maiden.
Astolfo: If they had a song as destructive as that, I might've been able to play along with my horn-flute thing!
Astolfo: I got this magical instrument from Logistilla, a witch I know! Normally I can't use it, but with this much magical energy, I can get in at least one good shot!
Astolfo: I hope you all enjoy it as much as those food-stealing harpies did.
Astolfo: All right then...time to go big, or go home! La Black Luna!!!
d'Eon: S-so incredibly loud! If I hadn't prepared myself,I shudder to think of what might have happened to me.
Astolfo: (Gasp) Good, that blew a lotta them away! Now let's see...
Amazon: What happened to our war cry!?
Astolfo: Aw shoot! I was hoping that'd be enough to scare 'em all off!
d'Eon: Well, it may not have set them to running, but it does seem to have neutralized the war cry.
d'Eon: Their berserk state seems to have faltered in consequence. Well done.
d'Eon: ...Now, it seems that I am up next.
Amazon: N-never mind the war cry! We're only up against two opponents. Let us show them our fury!
d'Eon: You, show us? I'm afraid you're mistaken. You're the ones who will be enjoying the show.
d'Eon: You are about to witness the bloom of a great lily on this very battlefield.
d'Eon: This white lily is the knighthood to which I have dedicated my life. Its petals are truth and radiance.
d'Eon: The tip of my dancing blade shall accompany it. Tear your eyes from this duet if you can.
d'Eon: Ordinarily, I would not perform this for an audience of more than fifty, but today is special. Today, blade and flower shall dance as long as you wish.
d'Eon: Today, this flower will steal the hearts of no less than a thousand spectators!
d'Eon: This, my ultimate technique, would normally require all of my magical energy, but for now I have something to provide me with all I will need.
d'Eon: Thus, I have no compunction about allowing it to bloom.
d'Eon: Long live the Order of the White Lily...Fleur de Lis!
Amazon: Hu...h...? Pretty...flower...
Amazon: Ngh...This is...ridiculous. We...we will not be–
d'Eon: ...The stage is set. I believe it's time for our finale, Astolfo.
Astolfo: Yup. All that's left to do now...
Astolfo: ...is take down a thousand Amazons!
Penthesilea: What is this? Why do my soldiers not come to my side!?
Fujimaru 1: They're doing it!
Fujimaru 2: Now's our chance!
Columbus: ...This is it, Penthesilea. It all ends now.
Penthesilea: ...Indeed, Achilles.
Penthesilea: Soon, you will die by my hand. This will not be like our last battle. I will not permit you to speak to me as you did back then.
Penthesilea: I am not without mercy, though. I will allow you to meet your death in whatever manner you see fit.
Penthesilea: Will you face me, overcome with fear? You may do so, for I am generous. Will you cry to your allies for aid? You may do so, for I am generous.
Penthesilea: Will you soil yourself and throw down your spear? You may do so, for I am generous. Will you beg pitifully for your life? You may do so, for I am generous.
Penthesilea: Whatever you choose, I shall kill you here and now. That much will not change.
Columbus: Heh...You hear that? She means to kill us.
Columbus: And who do you think she's going to start with? My guess is that she'll go straight for you!
Columbus: Megalos! You're up! Your enemy is the queen of the Amazons before you!
Penthesilea: Aah, ah...That voice. Achilles. That's the voice I will never permit to speak such tripe again.
Penthesilea: I still remember it all too clearly. I fought with all I had in our duel, only to have you slay me.
Penthesilea: And then, as I lay dying...you called me “beautiful! ”HOW DARE YOU!?
Mash: Penthesilea has gone berserk again! She appears to be responding to Megalos as he gears up for battle!
Fergus: ...We knew this was coming!
Mash: All of her stats are skyrocketing! She's getting far more dangerous!
Mash: Fortunately, you at least won't have to worry about her having support from the other Amazons.
Mash: It's time to put an end to this, Master!
Penthesilea: Once again, you would tear off my helmet after my defeat and call me beautiful?
Penthesilea: You DARE speak those words to a vanquished opponent? A warrior who fought with all her might?
Penthesilea: I do not mind dying. I do not even mind losing. It means nothing more than that I was not strong enough to claim victory.
Penthesilea: But if you too had risked your life in our battle...that is not what you say of your opponent.
Penthesilea: If you had truly fought desperately, you would have been relieved to be alive. Flushed with the thrill of victory...Elated with the joy of piercing a powerful foe with your spear...!
Penthesilea: At the very least, that is what I would have felt in your place. But you...you were different, Achilles!
Penthesilea: That you thought to say such a thing to my face–the one that moments ago might have been the very face of your doom...
Penthesilea: ...That rather than relief at your survival, or elation with your victory, such nonsense was the first thought to cross your mind...
Penthesilea: ...means you never even saw me as a warrior! The very opponent you had been fighting mere moments before!
Penthesilea: Rrrggghhh! You will pay...You will pay for that humiliation with your life!
Penthesilea: I even took the form of my younger self so that, even should I lose, you would never think to speak such drivel to me again!
Fergus: ...Now I see. So this is what she meant the first time we met her.
Fergus: She chose this immature form from her childhood to avoid hearing the same thing again.
Penthesilea: I can...still fight...I can...still stand. Just you wait...Achilles!
Fujimaru 1: It's over.
Fujimaru 2: Open your eyes, Penthesilea.
Penthesilea: (Cough, hack) ...Hm...?
Penthesilea: ...You're...Heracles. What's...the meaning of this?
Mash: It...It looks like she's seeing things clearly now!
Penthesilea: Indeed.... But this changes nothing.
Penthesilea: Like Achilles, you Greek heroes are our sworn enemy.
Penthesilea: Heracles. You stole my older sister Hippolyta's girdle, threw our nation into chaos, and killed her. I shall kill you one day as well.
Penthesilea: Then there is Theseus, who abducted my younger sister and made her his wife. You cowards...I swear, I shall kill you all one day!
Penthesilea: And yet...It seems that once again, I can do nothing but curse your names!
Penthesilea: ...Very well then, if that is all I can do, then I curse you. I curse all Greek heroes! The Amazons and the goddess of fate will avenge me! I curse you!
Mash: Penthesilea's disappearance, confirmed! But...the Demon God Pillar isn't there either!
Fergus: So our battle is not yet over then.
Narration: Looks that way.... But it will be soon.
Fergus: No it won't. Did you think I would drop my guard just because our battle was over?
Fergus: I would never do that. Young though I may be, I'd never betray the trust they placed in me.
Fergus: On the subject of trust, I should mention: I mistrusted you from the very start!
F：???: Well I'll be damned. I never detected a hint of suspicion from you, but you went and deflected that shot like it was nothing.
F：???: Pity. If I could have blown Master's head off there, this would have all been wrapped up nice and neat.
F：???: What a shame. And here I thought we were all in the same boat together.
Da Vinci: You were. But I still told them to keep an eye on you before you entered the temple.
Da Vinci: Christopher Columbus. A world-famous voyager, but also a slave trader and a mass murderer.
Da Vinci: As one of the conquistadors, there was no way your Alignment could be anything but Evil!
Da Vinci: That said, nobody there suspected anything until I told them about you.
Da Vinci: Fergus, of course, accepted it right away, but it didn't take much to convince d'Eon or Astolfo!
Columbus: You must be joking. I got feelings too, you know?
Columbus: Guess the joke's on me for thinking you goody-goodies wouldn't figure me out long as I kept quiet.
Columbus: Still...a mass murderer, huh.
Columbus: Is that really how history came to see me?
Columbus: All I ever did was try to make my dream come true! Hahahaha!
Section 14: King of Slaves
Columbus: As long as you don't give up, dreams DO come true...I'm living proof of that.
Columbus: Take a look around. We're standing in a temple of gold! I've dreamed of a place like this ever since I read about Zipang in The Travels of Marco Polo!
Fujimaru 1: Columbus...are you really our enemy!?
Fergus: I'm afraid so. He only cooperated with us until we got rid of his other enemies for him. Now that we have, he's shown his true colors.
Fujimaru 2: I really shouldn't trust old men with amnesia...
Fou: Fou, fou!
Mash: He was a wonderful leader for the Resistance. He always knew just what to say, and his allies looked up to him in every way.
Mash: And yet...there was always something nagging at me, making me wonder if we could really trust him.
Mash: Not knowing his True Name was certainly part of it, but even then, it felt like something deeper...
Mash: Now I know what it was: a fundamental difference in values.
Mash: I'm sorry. I might have been able to prevent this whole situation if only I'd trusted my misgivings.
Fergus: You have nothing to apologize for, Mash. Nobody should go around sowing the seeds of mistrust without good cause.
Fergus: I never gave much thought to what Columbus might value, personally.
Fergus: But if he now means Fujimaru harm, then I'll crush him regardless.
Fergus: It's no different from the other Agartha rulers we've fought. We just have to keep all of that in mind when we face him.
Columbus: Well well, you talk a big game for such a scrawny kid. You're going to be a hell of a guy when you grow up.
Columbus: Must be your royal blood, huh. That said...You're so straightforward that I bet it'd be real easy for someone to get the drop on you.
Fergus: Thank you for the warning. Now...What is it you want?
Fergus: Now that Agartha's rulers have all been defeated, the men you've been fighting to free should be able to return to the surface.
Columbus: What do I want? You actually have to ask? Why, I want to rule this place myself, of course.
Columbus: When I first awoke here, I couldn't believe how wonderful this world was! It's a paradise!
Columbus: Hmm, I see you're still confused. Then let me ask you this: What sort of world do you think this is?
Fujimaru 1: One where men are cruelly oppressed.
Columbus: No no, you've got it backwards. I'm talking about WHY that's the case.
Fujimaru 2: One where women control everything.
Columbus: No no, that's not it. I'm talking about WHY it ended up that way.
Columbus: It's the best part of this whole underground world!
Columbus: The fact that women can multiply endlessly!
Columbus: You saw it for yourselves, didn't you? Just a bit of seed, and BAM! A whole new woman!
Columbus: I couldn't believe it! It was like God had answered my prayers and brought all my dreams to life!
Fujimaru 1: What's so great about women multiplying...?
Columbus: You mean I have to spell that out too? Because you can sell them for a high price.
Columbus: You can use women for all sorts of things, after all. And to make it even better, these women are stronger than men, which means they can do all sorts of heavy labor that used to be just for male slaves!
Columbus: On top of that, it's easy to make practically endless amounts of them in no time at all! They don't even come out as children! It's a slave trader's dream!
Mash: ...You're a horrible person, Christopher Columbus. No country in the world condones slavery anymore.
Columbus: Huh? You think I don't know that? Of course I do. But that's just how it is in THIS day and age, right?
Columbus: Nobody had a problem with it in my era! I'm just acting according to the values of my own time!
Columbus: And it's not like my people invented slavery. Greece, Rome, the Middle East...it's been around forever!
Columbus: And THAT means all your Heroic Spirits who come from those times used slaves back when they were alive, and they didn't think anything of it!
Columbus: Some of those Heroic Spirits hear that slavery's frowned upon now, and decide to go with the times.
Columbus: Others hear that it's frowned upon, but decide slaves are still too useful to give up.
Columbus: That's all it comes down to, right? Who gets to decide whether that's right or wrong? When I grew up, slavery was normal. Who're you to tell me that was wrong?
Mash: That's...a complex subject.
Columbus: I have to say, though...God certainly hands out blessings and trials in equal measure. I thought as much back when I crossed the Atlantic.
Columbus: When I first awoke in this dream world come to life, it was already ruled by three queens, and I really had lost all my memories.
Columbus: Maybe whoever summoned me made a mistake somewhere. I couldn't say. Still, I may not've had my memories, but I was still me.
Columbus: So I followed my heart and set out to make my dream come true. At first, things seemed completely hopeless, but I never gave up.
Columbus: Now, how'd I get started...Oh yes. The first thing I needed was a place to hide out safely...
Helena: Oh man, what's going on!? I can't believe I'm actually here in Agartha!
Helena: Take that, all you arrogant skeptics! I knew it existed! It had to, after I said it did!
Helena: I still don't know who summoned me here or why...
Helena: ...but then, of course I would be here. I HAVE to be here! I'd bet anything Mahatma had a hand in this!
Helena: These peaches are delicious, and the river water's so clean. This should make for a great home base.
Helena: Now, what should I investigate first? Hehehe, there's Shambala...Agarthans...Ooh, I can tell I'm going to have my hands full just covering it all!
Helena: This is a momentous day. One small step for a girl, one giant leap for the occult!
Columbus: Uh, sorry to rain on your parade, but do you have a minute?
Helena: An Agarthan? You're an Agarthan, aren't you?
Helena: I have so many questions! What sort of ultimate truth have you arrived at? Why do you grow your beard that way? Is it some sort of spiritual thing?
Columbus: Hey now, don't get the wrong idea. I'm in the same boat you are. I'm just a stray Servant who was summoned here without any idea what's going on.
Helena: Aww, so you're just another Servant. Phooey.... So, what's up? What do you want, then?
Columbus: Hey, I just said we're in the same boat. I've been looking for somewhere safe and ended up here, just like you. I was thinking we could help each other out.
Helena: Hmm. Help each other out, huh...I guess it WOULD be tough to cover all the fieldwork on my own.
Helena: And, well, it might be handy to have someone around to gather more mundane information while I go about seeking the ultimate truth...
Helena: Okay, you've got yourself a deal. I'll be the brains, you'll be the–
Columbus: Great, thanks. In that case, it'd be really helpful to me...
Columbus: ...if you died.
Columbus: I get a nice safe hideout, and you get to disappear. Everybody wins! Hahahaha!
Columbus: I remember now...I killed a Caster when I first discovered that peach blossom spring.
Columbus: She seemed too smart to go along with what I had planned, so I had to get rid of her just to be safe.
Mash: Then...even your hideout was built on someone else's sacrifice!?
Mash: We never did find out what happened to Helena after she disappeared from Chaldea...I wonder if–
Columbus: Of course there's going to be sacrifices. I'm trying to claim this utopia all for myself, after all.
Columbus: I'm going to found my own country here: a kingdom of dreams, with an unlimited supply of slaves.
Columbus: And now, the groundwork has been laid.
Columbus: If a leader is defeated, the women of this world obey their new one. That's how this world works.
Columbus: The question is...now that Penthesilea's been defeated, who's going to be that new leader?
Fergus: I take it you aren't looking for a diplomatic solution.
Columbus: Hahaha, of course not! You already know why I chose to make my move now, don't you?
Columbus: Because I already have the perfect slave!
Columbus: Thanks for handing me the reins to this guy, Scheherazade!
Da Vinci: That is perhaps the biggest wrinkle in all of this.
Da Vinci: I would've made sure to stop you from giving him control of Megalos if I'd been there. It's too bad that our communications weren't working then.
Da Vinci: Because if there's one thing a slave trader should never have, it's a great hero in his service.
Columbus: At last, this new New World is almost mine! I can't wait to drop my anchor!
Columbus: You're up, my big, beautiful slave! It's time to put that monstrous power of yours to good use!
Mash: Master...we can't let him win! Let's get him!
Columbus: Hahaha, you should know better than most just how strong this hero is!
Columbus: And then there's my anchor! Every time I drop it, another part of my dream comes true!
Columbus: On one island, I find a land of healthy indigenous people just waiting to be enslaved! On another island, a mountain of gold ready to be traded for glass beads!
Columbus: I can't wait to see what I'll find on this island! Santa Maria Drop Anchor!
Fujimaru 1: We can't hold them both off!
Scheherazade: I don't want to die!
Astolfo: Wowie, that was rough! But we made it!
d'Eon: Are you all right, Master!?
Fujimaru 1: Astolfo! d'Eon! Are YOU all right!?
Astolfo: Gotta be honest, I'm pretty much outta gas here.
d'Eon: We did not defeat all of the Amazons, but it seems there is no longer any need to...
d'Eon: ...as they are merely standing around staring blankly into space. I take it you have defeated Penthesilea?
Mash: Yes, we did. But unfortunately...
d'Eon: ...It seems your misgivings were well-founded.
Columbus: Well, look at you two jumping into the fray. What good little allies you are.
Columbus: You are of course welcome to join us. I can almost certainly find buyers who'd pay a great deal for slaves of your particular bent.
Columbus: Talk about a priceless opportunity! Though of course, I'll have put SOME kind of price to you if I am to be paid for my trouble! Hahahaha!
d'Eon: ...Allies, eh. That reminds me of something I need to confirm.
Columbus: Oho, and what might that be? Go on, ask me anything.
d'Eon: Are you the one who set fire to the hideout?
Columbus: Got it in one! Really, who else would it be!?
Resistance: Wha...!? You mean, that fire was actually...!?
Columbus: Oh, come now, think about it. We were up against the Amazons, right?
Columbus: If they'd actually found our hideout, they wouldn't have just set it on fire.
Columbus: They'd come after us with axes and swords and their war cry to finish us off for good.
Resistance: B-but then...Why would you destroy our own hideout!?
Columbus: Why? Because you useless good-for-nothings were practically shaking in your boots at the idea of facing the Amazons again, of course.
Columbus: When his crew's freaking out, a good captain uses every tool at his disposal to keep the ship moving.
Columbus: Sometimes he'll keep two separate logbooks. Other times he'll stretch the facts as far as they can go to claim that land is near.
Columbus: It was the same thing here. I had to burn it all down to keep you useless idiots moving forward.
Columbus: To make you steel yourselves and convince you that you had to keep fighting in order to survive.
Columbus: I couldn't have you little turds resigning yourselves to being their slaves after coming this far.
Columbus: You were MY slaves! You were the pawns I needed to claim this world for myself! You don't get to change masters unless I say so!
Resistance: Th-then...all along, we were just...
Columbus: After I claimed the peach blossom spring, the next thing I needed was soldiers.
Columbus: Naturally, I quickly realized that the men fed up with their lot in life here were my best bet.
Columbus: I have to say, you were a fine crew. Not one of you ever suspected I was anything less than altruistic.
Columbus: I'm pretty used to putting down mutinies on my ships, so it was a pleasant surprise not to have to bother with that for you lot!
Resistance: S-so many of us died...because we trusted you!
Columbus: I know. It broke my heart to see so many useful laborers die without having a chance to sell them off.
Columbus: But that's not enough to make me give up on my dream. It's like I always told you: as long as you don't give up, one day you'll reach your destination!
Astolfo: Yeesh...He doesn't break character for a minute,does he.
d'Eon: There is no reason one cannot be both a positive thinker and an evil person. It merely makes one an all the more despicable villain.
d'Eon: ...I've known a number of people like him in my time, but I've never before seen one so unabashed.
Mash: I feel the same. At any rate...I feel much better now that you and Astolfo are here!
Mash: I'm certain that you were able to wound him badly in the last battle. You can do this, Master!
Fujimaru 1: I won't lose to anyone who exploits others!
Columbus: Hahaha! That's rich!
Columbus: None of you ever once wished you were rich? Then go ahead, throw the first stone at me!
Fujimaru 2: Columbus! This world is NOT for you!
Fou: Fou, fooou!
Mash: Y-you did it! Megalos has shut down!
Fujimaru 1: It's over, Columbus!
Columbus: Haha, hahahaha...Oh no it isn't. Not yet. I'm not giving up. I'll never give up.
d'Eon: You can barely stand. If ever there was a time to give up, this is it. What more can you possibly–
d'Eon: ...Wait. Is that...!?
Columbus: Haha, hahahaha! Good thing I had this stashed away!
Astolfo: Oh crap. Is that a Tamatebako!?
Fergus: He must have still had one hidden on him!
d'Eon: Damn...We have to stop him from using it!
Columbus: Too late! You'll never make it in time! Here, Megalos! I've got a little pick-me-up for you!
Columbus: It's way better than dried meat and wine! Go ahead, take as much magical energy as you want!
Mash: This is bad! If Megalos gets a second wind while we're still exhausted...!
Astolfo: Did...an arrow just send the Tamatebako flying?
Fujimaru 1: Wh-who fired that?
Fujimaru 2: Great shot! That was one in a million!
Resistance: ...I didn't think I would actually hit it.
Resistance: But...I guess all that training paid off.
Resistance: It's just like you always said, Captain. The important thing is to never give up.
Columbus: You...you worthless excuse for a slave! You're not even fit to scrub my boots!
Fergus: Is that so. Because as far as I'm concerned, you're not even fit to wear those boots!
Fergus: It's over!
Mash: You did it! That wound is fatal! But please be careful, Fergus!
Fergus: Yes, I know! This is where the Demon God Pillar will–
Columbus: Dammit...Dammit...! I'm sorry, God!
Columbus: I ended up wasting all the good luck you gave me!
Columbus: But...I'm not giving up.
Columbus: The next time I'm summoned, I'll find another treasure island to make my fortune.
Columbus: I can't wait. I'm counting the days already...Haha, hahahaha!
Astolfo: He's...gone? Just like that?
d'Eon: Megalos as well! We must have completely destroyed their Spirit Origins! But, in that case...
Holmes: Hmm, it appears this story has reached its conclusion. In that case, I trust you won't mind if I interject.
Holmes: Or, to be more precise, I've accumulated so much evidence so quickly that I've only now reached a point where I CAN interject.
Fujimaru 1: ...What are you trying to say, Holmes?
Holmes: I do of course understand that there is no need for me to involve myself in this matter, but given my nature, I'm afraid I'm compelled to do so regardless.
Holmes: Now then...Ms. Kyrielight. I see you have your brow furrowed with quite a sweat.
Holmes: Would you care to elaborate on the mystery that still plagues you?
Holmes: That will explain how this whole matter began, and, most likely, how it will end.
Mash: ...Our goal in coming here was to carry out the Remnant Order.
Mash: But we still haven't found the Demon God Pillar, even though we know it's somewhere here in Agartha.
Holmes: Precisely. To be honest, I'm a bit disappointed. The evidence is so clear that it practically leads you to the conclusion by the nose.
Holmes: Nonetheless, since I know you to be something of a fan of mine, Ms. Kyrielight, I shall take this occasion to repeat one of my best-known lines:
Holmes: “Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth. ”
Holmes: In this case, the “impossible” is the notion that the Demon God Pillar could not have been hiding within one of the leaders of the three nations in Agartha.
Holmes: That its signal remains even after defeating all prior suspects proves that none of them were the culprit.
Holmes: We can safely eliminate Chaldea's Servants from the pool of suspects as well. While not impossible for the Pillar to have hidden within one of them, doing so would have been needlessly complicated.
Holmes: Now, it seems fair to assume that the Servants you met in Agartha who originated from Chaldea were forcefully summoned here to serve specific roles.
Holmes: While they may have functioned as hooks and page-turners to propel one through the story, they are highly unlikely to be part of the main cast.
Holmes: So...given all that, what is it that “remains”?
Holmes: Who is the one surviving Servant we have met here in Agartha that has no relation whatsoever to Chaldea?
Scheherazade: And thus, the story is complete. Thank you...
Section 15: The Story Comes to Fruition
Fujimaru 1: Scheherazade!
Fujimaru 2: You're the one behind all this?
Fergus: Huh? I...I don't understand! What do you mean “the story is complete”!?
Scheherazade: Very well, my one miscast...Now that everything has concluded, I shall tell you.
Scheherazade: It's very simple. In brief...
Scheherazade: I created Agartha by having my Noble Phantasm–my stories–erode the real world.
Scheherazade: Put differently, you have all been inside my One Thousand and One Nights this entire time.
Mash: But...that doesn't make any sense.
Mash: The One Thousand and One Nights does have a story set in an underground world, but it's nothing like this.
Mash: And needless to say, they definitely don't include Ys, the Nightless City, El Dorado, the Peach Garden, or the Dragon Palace.
Scheherazade: That may be...But I never told the tales of Aladdin or Ali Baba when I was alive either.
Da Vinci: ...Now I see. The One Thousand and One Nights as we know them now contain a number of parts that were added over the course of various retellings.
Da Vinci: But if she's able to use them all without any issue...
Da Vinci: ...it may be that she gets to decide what the One Thousand and One Nights are.
Scheherazade: Indeed. Stories I learned through books...stories I improvised myself...
Scheherazade: Stories that came after my time, but that I could have plausibly told...
Scheherazade: The One Thousand and One Nights were never a fixed set, but a malleable collective that grew over time.
Scheherazade: As such, it only makes sense that I would have a right to choose what goes into them...
Da Vinci: ...Now that you point that out, I can see the connection between this world and your Noble Phantasm.
Da Vinci: Fictional or not, everything here is part of a story. I might have realized it sooner if I'd paid more attention to that.
Da Vinci: Then again...maybe I didn't realize it because there's still something I can't quite believe:
Da Vinci: ...the sheer scale and rigidity of this world.
Da Vinci: This is on a whole other level from the monsters Shakespeare wrote into existence in Shinjuku.
Da Vinci: Here, it's more like the rules of this world–rather, that this entire Singularity is itself a story.
Mash: That's the equivalent of eroding...no, rewriting reality.
Mash: That would have to be an incredibly powerful spell: something on par with a Reality Marble! I guess it could be possible for a Demon God Pillar, but still...
Holmes: Hmm, I suspected as much.
Holmes: All stories, whether they be fiction or nonfiction, have an element of inauthenticity.
Fujimaru 1: ...Even nonfiction?
Holmes: Of course. After all, when one is describing events as a story...
Holmes: ...by definition, those events are not taking place in reality.
Astolfo: Okaaay...English, please! What's that all mean?
Holmes: It means the evidence was in plain sight from the beginning.
Holmes: Every Servant here has had some manner of inauthenticity to them.
Holmes: That is the proof that this has all been a story.
Mash: ...What do you mean by that, Holmes?
Holmes: This underground domain has blended together story and reality to an even greater degree than Shinjuku.
Holmes: In Shinjuku, that blend merely occurred as a result of Bael's choice to use Phantom Spirits...
Holmes: ...but in Agartha, I sense it to be a deliberate choice.
Holmes: Once this unnatural underground space was created, Heroic Spirits were summoned to it, but with significant alterations made to them.
Holmes: Some reactions were all but inevitable in such a process. In this case, I believe they were the story each Servant was made to perform.
Fujimaru 1: Wait, back up. Did you say “every Servant here”!?
Holmes: I did indeed. Let us begin with the most obvious examples. Surely there was something that struck you as inauthentic about them?
Mash: ...Christopher Columbus had amnesia.
Mash: Heracles was Heracles Megalos, an enormous, mindless beast in a constant berserk state.
Fujimaru 1: And Drake was Dahut!
Scheherazade: ...Hehe. Those are certainly the clearest examples. But I'm afraid I had no other choice.
Scheherazade: After all, Pirate Princess Dahut, the ruler of Ys...
Scheherazade: ...was simply impossible to summon as a Servant.
Holmes: I see. That puts one in mind of Phantom Spirits.
Da Vinci: ...Yeah. To be honest, Wu Zetian and the Nightless City have been nagging at me for a while now.
d'Eon: What do you mean...?
Da Vinci: They're from entirely different periods. Wu Zetian is from the Tang dynasty, while the Nightless City is from the Han.
Da Vinci: I let it pass me by at first since they both come from China...
Da Vinci: But when you think about it, it makes no sense for Wu Zetian to be the ruler of the Nightless City.
Da Vinci: They have no connection other than their country, and they're hundreds of years apart historically.
Holmes: Assuming that was indeed Wu Zetian's inauthenticity, the final piece is the Amazons, the most elementary of all these errors.
Holmes: They fall into much the same category as Wu Zetian, in that their historical domain differed greatly from the land they controlled here.
Fujimaru 1: But didn't the Amazons live in the jungle?
Holmes: Those who lived in the jungles of South America, the ones who protected El Dorado...
Holmes: ...are entirely different from the warrior women of Greek mythology.
Holmes: Some believe that the tribe of women who lived in the jungle only came to be associated due to their similarities to the myth...
Holmes: ...and that that is why the river and surrounding area came to be known as the Amazon.
Holmes: In essence, the Greek figures were no more than the model for those in the story of El Dorado.
Holmes: And so the fact that Penthesilea lived in El Dorado was itself another inauthenticity.
Holmes: And then...
Fergus: There's me...the fledgling warrior. The Fergus who's nothing like the Fergus you all know.
Fergus: Scheherazade...you said I was your one miscast. What did you mean by that?
Scheherazade: ...Fergus mac Róich. Your intended role was to stir up Agartha, though in a different way than Heracles.
Scheherazade: I had read that you were the embodiment of male sexuality, that you required seven women every night just to satisfy your lust.
Scheherazade: I thought you would be even lustier if I summoned you in your youth, but you ended up being TOO young.
Scheherazade: I could not have imagined that you would appear as a boy uncomfortable around women, to the point that you could not even raise a hand against one. You are by far my greatest miscalculation.
Fergus: A miscalculation...? So I'm only here because of a mistake.
Fergus: I'm a pointless side character. A half-baked extra. I hate to admit it, but that makes a lot of sense.
Fergus: I haven't been of any help in a single battle so far. It didn't matter whether I was there or not.
Fergus: (But...that's only true for the audience. For me, this adventure has been–)
Holmes: Yes, Master Fergus's inauthenticity is his youth. Essentially, everything we see before us now.
Holmes: One might go so far as to assert that every other Servant who may have been summoned here and eliminated prior to our meeting them would have had some inauthentic characteristic about them.
d'Eon: Then, the Noble Phantasm you have been using before us all this time: Alf Layla Wa-Layla–the One Thousand and One Nights...
d'Eon: ...that is what you used to create this world, and to summon twisted forms of Servants to fill it.
d'Eon: I only have one question. Why would you do such a thing?
Scheherazade: ...You really have to ask? I thought my desire had been made quite clear.
Scheherazade: I have certainly voiced it often enough...
d'Eon: Then...your objective is to live a long life?
Scheherazade: No, no, I never said anything like that.
Scheherazade: All I want...is to not die.
Fujimaru 1: Isn't that the same thing!?
Scheherazade: Not in the slightest. As long as you are alive, you will one day have to die.
Astolfo: Uh...'Scuse me, but you DO know that we're all Servants, right?
Scheherazade: What difference does that make? To exist now inevitably means dying later. It's the same thing.
Scheherazade: In the end, we Servants are nothing more than familiars. Once our task is finished, we disappear.
Scheherazade: That, too, is death. It holds the same chill, solitude, misery...the same terrifying intercourse with nothingness as when you cease to exist!
Scheherazade: I can't stand it. I spent every one of those thousand and one nights wishing for nothing more than to not die. Every fiber of my being is terrified of death!
Scheherazade: And, as a Heroic Spirit,the only way for me to ever avoid dying...
Scheherazade: ...is to destroy the world. The man who summoned me taught me that.
Fujimaru 1: Destroy the world!?
d'Eon: A man, hmm? I believe we have just found our Demon God Pillar collaborator!
Fujimaru 2: Then...that man must be the Demon God Pillar!
Mash: ...When she first showed up, I of course scanned her for the Demon God Pillar's signal.
Mash: If she really is the one who's been working with him, then how did they avoid detection!?
Da Vinci: Let's not forget that other little, tiny thing she brought up. Did you say “destroy the world”?
Scheherazade: Agartha's story is one in which related stories, and those of Servants summoned here, mingle and fight...
Scheherazade: ...and ultimately comes to fruition once they disappear.
Scheherazade: My Noble Phantasm gives stories form. His power made them real.
Scheherazade: Very soon, my story–the story of Agartha–will assume the form it was always meant to take!
Fujimaru 1: Everything's shaking!
Fujimaru 2: An earthquake!?
Mash: No, it's not that! I...I can't believe it! Your Z-axis coordinates are rising rapidly!
Da Vinci: The ground is moving; the sky is splitting...It's like the entire space is moving upward!
Astolfo: Wh-what the...? There's a real sky instead of a rocky ceiling now!
d'Eon: Impossible. You mean to tell me we're flying!?
Scheherazade: This is Agartha's final form come to life...another story all its own.
Scheherazade: It is now the floating city of Laputa!
Scheherazade: I offered up everything I had to that king in order to not die. Not only my stories...but my body as well.
Scheherazade: As such, there can be no more fitting name for the finale than “Laputa”–the “whore”!
Scheherazade: Rise, Laputa! Gaze down upon the earth, and plummet towards it! You shall be the last of the mythical cities, the destroyer of the world's natural laws!
Section 16: Women of Agartha
Resistance Man A: Aaahhh! W-we're flying...We're actually flying!
Resistance Man B: H-how is this happening!?
d'Eon: I had forgotten they were still here. This is bad! They're starting to panic!
Astolfo: Umm...Hey! I've got a job for you guys!
Resistance Men: ...Huh?
Astolfo: Real simple: get outta here! Find as many of the men imprisoned here as you can, and round 'em all up.
Astolfo: Once you've done that, I want you to meet us back by the boats we used to get here.
Astolfo: Oh, and don't worry 'bout the Amazons! They should be busy zoning out like zombies. You could even steal their horses if you wanted!
Astolfo: Now go on, hurry it up!
Resistance Men: O-okay...We're on it!
d'Eon: ...Well done. That was an excellent idea, giving them a job so they wouldn't have time to panic.
Astolfo: Heh heh! People are always telling me I'm the sort who comes through when things get REAL bad!
Astolfo: Besides, we were gonna have to do something about the men still imprisoned here at some point anyway.
Astolfo: All the more so now that we literally have liftoff.
d'Eon: Indeed. Not to mention that this area is likely to become even more dangerous. It would certainly be best not to have ordinary humans close at hand.
d'Eon: Now then...
Holmes: Now that our spectators have left for the time being,Ms. Scheherazade, allow me to ask you a question.
Holmes: Where exactly do you intend to have this place plummet?
Scheherazade: Nowhere in particular. Any heavily populated city will do.
Mash: Oh no...it's starting to shift horizontally, too!
Mash: It's definitely setting a course for somewhere!
Da Vinci: Then we need to act, and quickly.
Da Vinci: At least right now, we're still above the relatively uninhabited Nepalese mountains...but there's still got to be at least some people seeing this.
Da Vinci: These last few minutes alone are going to be a nightmare for the Mage's Association of this time period to clean up.
Da Vinci: And if that weren't enough, you're also going to drop this huge landmass on a heavily populated city?
Da Vinci: This is a disaster. It would be a catastrophe like we've never seen before.
Fujimaru 1: Hundreds...Thousands of people would die!
Da Vinci: I'm afraid it could be orders of magnitude greater than that. To make matters worse, the damage won't be limited to the physical realm.
Da Vinci: We're still experiencing the aftereffects of the Goetia mess, so the world hasn't completely stabilized yet.
Da Vinci: There's no telling what sort of chaos this could unleash!
Scheherazade: That is exactly the point. There is a reason why I'm going to have a fictional city destroy a real one.
Scheherazade: By doing so...I will destroy the concept of mystical secrets.
Scheherazade: Once Laputa plummets onto a real city...
Scheherazade: ...people everywhere will be forced to accept that a place of fiction is as real as the place it destroyed, and the people it killed.
Scheherazade: Once that happens, it will change the world.
Scheherazade: Everyone will know that mystical beings exist, and in consequence, everyone will attempt to learn their secrets for themselves.
Scheherazade: Eventually, the mystical may become an ordinary part of everyone's lives.
Mash: Wait! If that actually happened, then...!
Scheherazade: Indeed...Once Mystics become available to all, they will cease to be Mystics in the first place!
Scheherazade: That is the future I wish to bring about.
Scheherazade: A world where Mystics lose all substance and power, so the Servant Summoning System becomes obsolete.
Scheherazade: Otherwise...I'll have to die again and again. I'll have to constantly live in fear of death.
Scheherazade: I'll never be able to escape the insidiousness of knowing my death is assured whenever I am summoned.
Fergus: ...You would go so far, just to avoid death?
Scheherazade: Can't you understand how I feel?
Fergus: No, I can't. Your fear of death is far out of proportion for any living creature.
Fergus: If it isn't death you fear, but the idea of yourself dying...then something has gone wrong in your life.
Fergus: ...Let me share now what I held back that night: our perspectives on death couldn't be more different.
Fergus: I am a warrior. From the day I was born, I have been taught that to die is an honor.
Fergus: The only aspect of death we fear is that we might die having violated our pride or geis, not death itself.
Fergus: Death is inevitable for all living things. The path you take to death IS your life.
Fergus: You should be fighting what led you to fear death to such a degree, not death itself.
Scheherazade: ...You surprise me, young Fergus. You are far more composed than warriors twice your age.
Scheherazade: Your grown-up self must be a wise and kind warrior indeed.
Fujimaru 1: Uh...
Mash: I'm right there with all of you, but now is not the time!
Scheherazade: But...I am not that strong. I never was. For I am not a warrior.
Scheherazade: I simply cannot help but wish to not die. That is all I think about. All I CAN think about.
Scheherazade: I don't want to be strangled. I don't want to be cut. I don't want to be flogged.
Scheherazade: I don't want to be burned. I don't want to be stabbed. I don't want to be starved. I don't want to be shot.
Scheherazade: I don't want to be eaten. I don't want to be crushed. I don't want to be poisoned.
Scheherazade: There are so many ways to die.
Scheherazade: I don't want to die. I don't want to die, no matter what...That's all I've ever wanted!
Scheherazade: ...For me, stories were my lifeline.
Scheherazade: A thin, flimsy lifeline, comprised solely of words I strung together reticently, uncertainly...
Fujimaru 1: Hang on. In the One Thousand and One Nights...
Fujimaru 2: I thought your motive was much braver than that.
Mash: That's right, Master. I know the story of the One Thousand and One Nights...the Arabian Nights as well.
Mash: In it, there was a king who was taking virgins as wives and killing them the next morning.
Mash: And you volunteered to go and stop him because it was the right thing to do. Didn't you?
Scheherazade: ...At first, yes.
Scheherazade: But...do you know what it's like to spend night after night with a deranged king who no longer trusts women?
Scheherazade: The fear that comes with never knowing if the next day will be your last?
Scheherazade: He couldn't be reasoned with or bargained with. He would simply kill women for no reason at all.
Scheherazade: I could have been killed merely because the wind blew. Or because it rained.
Scheherazade: Anything could have set him off.
Scheherazade: And of course...it was always possible that he would grow tired of my stories, and decide to kill me rather than wait to find out what happens next.
Scheherazade: It was as though I lived with a poisonous insect who could kill me with but a single sting.
Scheherazade: That is why, after some time, all I had left was the desire to not die.
Scheherazade: That was all I had. I devoted my entire being towards fulfilling it.
Scheherazade: Words. Expressions. Presence. Gaze. Servitude. Demeanor. Opinions. Changes. Worldview. Stories. Pleasure. Temperature. Uselessness. Usefulness. Submissiveness. Stimulation.
Scheherazade: I gave up everything I had, all so I wouldn't have to die.
Scheherazade: And at long last...after one thousand interminable nights, the king finally came to his senses...!
Scheherazade: After all that, when I had lived my one and only life...I was forced to become a Heroic Spirit!
Scheherazade: After I had been shaped and formed solely by my desire not to die, I went and became a being that is doomed to be repeatedly summoned and always disappear!
Fergus: ...Kings are both great in stature, and foolish in mind. Agartha itself has proven as much.
Fergus: A single person attempting to lead a nation will inevitably end in discord.
Fergus: Regardless of whether that discord leads to failure among its people, or failure in the nation itself...
Fergus: I know now that the responsibility for either outcome falls on the king. From the outside, that king will appear foolish, or even tyrannical.
Fergus: No matter how skilled a warrior they are, kings who cannot accept that foolishness will not stay king.
Fergus: ...My future self knows that well.
Fergus: Nothing I can say to you could make up for the suffering you endured, spending a thousand nights with such a foolish king.
Fergus: But I can say this:
Fergus: I won't let you destroy the world simply because you don't want to die.
Fergus: We Celtic warriors see the world as a battlefield of honor, and your story contains no hint of honor.
Astolfo: Yeah! Y'know, I don't really get what's goin' on right now...
Astolfo: But I do know I definitely don't want the Servant system going away.
Astolfo: That would mean I'd never get to visit any new places, or meet anyone new...
Astolfo: ...or get to send anyone off with a word of encouragement ever again, right? That'd be awful!
Astolfo: I don't want to forget those tears.
d'Eon: I am a Knight of the White Lily, sworn to protect France. Indirect though it may be, I am proud that I can continue to fulfill my duty even in death.
d'Eon: If you wish to remove the means of fulfilling my duty, that makes you an enemy of France, and me.
Fujimaru 1: Above all...I can't let you cause a catastrophe!
Mash: Well said, Master! If a landmass this size struck the earth, the damage would truly be cataclysmic.
Mash: We absolutely have to prevent that, no matter what.
Mash: ...Fearing death, clinging to life, attempting to destroy everything...That much may be the same as the Demon God King's plan.
Mash: But she has nothing beyond that. She has no intention of remaking the planet, nor of starting over...
Mash: All she's doing is trying to destroy the world out of petty personal desire.
Mash: Again, she has nothing beyond that.
Mash: I don't know how much influence the Demon God Pillar has had on her...But this whole idea is twisted.
Mash: She's trying to commit suicide by destroying the world, all so that she'll never have to die again.
Scheherazade: Don't misunderstand me. I would just as soon leave the world out of this if I could.
Scheherazade: That one who summoned me told me that there was one Heroic Spirit who voluntarily disappeared from the Throne of his own accord.
Scheherazade: How I envy him. Things would have been so much easier if only I could do that too...
Fujimaru 1: ...
Da Vinci: (Sigh) ...(You've got it completely backwards. You have no idea what a great and tragic feat it was for him to disappear from the Throne like that. )
Da Vinci: (Whether it's potential they failed to live up to, or tasks they failed to complete, every great person has unfinished business of one kind or another. )
Da Vinci: (Only those who have succeeded at leaving nothing at all behind can fully disappear from this universe. )
Da Vinci: (His soul will never transmigrate. No one will ever tell his stories again. He'll never be needed by anyone for anything. He had no choice but to disappear into the void, and you ENVY him that. )
Mash: You don't need to say anything, Master. I feel the same way.
Mash: She has no idea the fury she's just incited in all of us.
Mash: ...Come on. Let's show her just how wrongheaded her envy is.
Fujimaru 1: Okay, Scheherazade. This is REALLY going to hurt.
Fujimaru 2: If he were still here, he'd have a lot to say.
Scheherazade: All I want...is to not die. Nothing more.
Scheherazade: So why...why are you trying to subject me to that again? How could you be so cruel?
Scheherazade: Very well then. I suppose I have to fight, if I don't want to die...
Scheherazade: I doubt you'll let me go no matter how beautiful a dogeza I present.
Scheherazade: ...I have nothing against you, Fujimaru. If anything, I envy you too.
Scheherazade: Out of everyone here, you are the only one...
Scheherazade: ...who will never have to die again once you are dead!
Fujimaru 1: She's tough...!
Scheherazade: Of course. After all, I don't want to die.
Astolfo: Grrr, this is weirdly harder than it should be. Something's not right...
Astolfo: It's not technique or experience...It's more like...she just squirms away whenever it feels like I've got a clear shot!
d'Eon: Is that so? I haven't noticed anything like that.
Fergus: I feel the same as Astolfo.
Fergus: I still can't use my sword against her, but I should at least be able to hold her in place.
Fergus: And yet, she always manages to slip away at the last moment. What's going on?
Scheherazade: Allow me to tell you one of my traits. Now that I am a Servant, no king can kill me.
Scheherazade: After all, the reason I became a Heroic Spirit is because I avoided death at a king's hands.
Scheherazade: Although, strictly speaking, it's only a skill that lets me move around in order to keep kings at bay.
Astolfo: Aww crap, are you serious? I guess since I'm a prince, it technically affects me, too.
Fujimaru 1: So not Anti-Personnel, but an Anti-King skill!
Fujimaru 2: Maybe you kings should sit this one out then.
Mash: Master, this skill is making it easy for her to stall for time!
Mash: Laputa's huge landmass has been slowly but surely moving this whole time!
Da Vinci: It's clear that this Singularity took shape by combining with your Noble Phantasm.
Da Vinci: But what sort of magical energy could you possibly put together to make that work? How in the world did you manage the resources? The design?
Scheherazade: ...He's the one who told me how it would work.
Scheherazade: I was to summon Servants to an enclosed underground world, and have them fight one another.
Scheherazade: Such an environment would naturally lead to conflict. The more twisted, the better.
Scheherazade: So I decided to use a conquistador with unabashedly twisted desires as the base of its design.
d'Eon: As Columbus said...Agartha was indeed the sort of world he had long wished for.
d'Eon: But he could not have guessed that the patron who granted that wish had even more deplorable motives.
Holmes: It doesn't matter how it was all designed. The main goal was getting Servants to fight. Which means...
Scheherazade: Conflict between Servants would lead to a vortex of magical energy. On top of that...
Scheherazade: The enclosed nature of the underground Singularity enabled it to trap the vanquished Servants' souls...
Scheherazade: ...and continuously exploit the energy generated as they attempted to return to the Throne.
Scheherazade: That was the goal. It would then use that abundant energy to slowly make my story into reality.
Holmes: Hmm. That sounds rather like having a horse turn a cogwheel by dangling a carrot before its nose.
Scheherazade: ...He also told me that this could be considered a kind of Holy Grail War.
Fujimaru 1: ...!
Scheherazade: A Holy Grail War that exists only as a twisted story, where no one attempts to seek the Grail.
Scheherazade: But before I knew it, the Holy Grail had already materialized in the form of a story come to life.
Mash: Look out, Master! I think she's still just trying to stall for time.
Mash: If Laputa drops onto a major city, she'll have won! Please, hurry!
Astolfo: Okay then! Time to bust out the clichés about how I've been holding back this whole time!
Scheherazade: I have fought alongside all of you, and I know how strong you are. You are indeed powerful enough to kill me if I let down my guard.
Scheherazade: So from here on...I leave it to you, Phenex.
Demon God Phenex: Phenex/I am. I am truth/reunion/one of the seventy-two Demon God Pillars.
Mash: It's the Demon God Pillar! Please be careful!
Da Vinci: Phenex! The Demon God of death and rebirth, thought to be identical to the phoenix known in the West.
Da Vinci: His number is thirty-seven–his rank, marquis. It's said that his every word is a natural poem.
Holmes: I see. That explains his unusual manner of speech. As to the quality of his poetry...I shall refrain from voicing my opinions.
Holmes: I would love to have Watson offer his opinion on it. Not that he is a poet himself, of course.
Holmes: But perhaps hearing what passes for poetry from this creature would inspire him to try his hand at it.
Mash: ...I finally understand why I wasn't able to see the Demon God lurking behind Scheherazade before.
Mash: A number of his values are inverted. In other words...numerically speaking, he's already dead.
Da Vinci: Now I see. We never saw him, because we never looked for something that was dead.
Da Vinci: This may only be a trick unique to the Demon God of death and rebirth...
Da Vinci: But we probably shouldn't count on future Demon God Pillars being easily detectable either.
Demon God Phenex: The reason I am here/is to prove my friendship. To accept Scheherazade/for who she is.
Demon God Phenex: Life and death/unavoidable/self-purpose/unavoidable life and death! Simple death→no rebirth. Only acquired by melding with me.
Demon God Phenex: Her wish, her dream/not to die/not to live! Found it, I found it! Answer! The answer!
Fujimaru 1: So he wasn't using Scheherazade at all.
Fujimaru 2: It sounds like he actually sympathized with her.
Mash: You actually understand what this Demon God is saying, Master?
Fujimaru 1: More or less!
Mash: That's amazing. No wonder you're the Master. I didn't have the faintest idea.
d'Eon: I may not know what he is saying, but I do know what he is attempting.
Astolfo: Yup. Now that he's not hiding anymore, he's gonna try and do us in personally!
Astolfo: Let's do this, Master! Let's show him how he's no different from any of the other thousands of pillars we've whupped before!
Mash: Our target is Phenex, the thirty-seventh Demon God Pillar. Please destroy him, Master!
Fergus: But, I'm not the only one...!
Demon God Phenex: Sorrow/doubt/are we evil? No, no no, we are nature.
Demon God Phenex: As such, we must be one mind,one body/Scheherazade=Phenex!
Demon God Phenex: Our wish/not to die while alive. Our fate/to be reborn once dead.
Demon God Phenex: Compulsion/our existence/contradiction. Our wish, never to be granted!
Demon God Phenex: We are both slaves to our wish!
Demon God Phenex: But, if/all living things/wish not to die...If we live forever/without being stripped of that...
Demon God Phenex: That is not a wish. It is a curse.
Demon God Phenex: We cannot help...but want...to break it...Aah, aaahhh!
Astolfo: Did...Uh, did we get him?
Mash: The Demon God Pillar's signal is gone, but...
Mash: Huh!? Master, I'm picking up a faint Servant reading nearby! Please be careful!
Astolfo: ...Okay, well...she's almost dead.
Scheherazade: Phenex...You were the only one to ever understand me.
Scheherazade: Nothing has changed. The ending has already been written. After all, Laputa has already materialized!
Scheherazade: Even if the Demon God vanishes, or I die...It will still plummet to earth! Not a story, but reality!
Scheherazade: Parts of it may be damaged, but that doesn't matter. It should retain its form until impact.
Scheherazade: There is nothing anyone can do to stop it! This is the final chapter for all of you...and for me! At last, my wish will come true!
Scheherazade: Hehe, hehehehe!
Fergus: Ghh...It looks like this is it. But...if I just disappeared now, I truly would be pathetic.
Fergus: Hup! Hnghhh...!
d'Eon: Fergus, your wound is too deep! Stay down!
Fergus: No...it's okay. Young and weak as I am, I knew there was no way to escape grievous injury while trying to battle a Demon God Pillar.
Fergus: But this time, my experience won out. Thanks to the training I've undergone in Agartha, I WAS able to escape with my life, though only barely.
Fergus: That said, I don't have much time. So before I go...I'd like to talk to Scheherazade.
Mash: B-but, your Spirit Origin is just barely holding together. And besides, nothing you do about her will help to stop Laputa!
Fujimaru 1: I think he's got something in mind.
Fujimaru 2: I'll admit I'm worried, but...go for it!
Scheherazade: The young, wounded warrior. The powerless, hapless, half-baked child, who never truly had a role to play in this story.
Scheherazade: You can't stop this. You simply cannot.
Scheherazade: Even if you sully your innocent hands by ending my life now...
Scheherazade: Laputa will not be erased!
Fergus: You're wrong, Scheherazade. What I'm going to erase...is your fear of death.
Fergus: You ARE a strong woman. You may have had the Demon God Pillar's help, but you still planned, constructed, and created this story.
Fergus: More than that, you never gave us the slightest hint that it was you, even though we were right by your side. You are nothing if not resilient.
Fergus: And not just you. Every woman we met here in Agartha was strong.
Fergus: Dahut. Wu Zetian. Penthesilea. The pirates of Ys, the subjects of the Nightless City, the Amazons of El Dorado...
Fergus: They were all strong, in their own ways. Thanks to that,I see now just how narrow-minded I used to be.
Fergus: How foolish it was to think that women were nothing but chaste, dainty creatures that were only fit for sewing. That they could never be valiant opponents against whom to draw my sword.
Scheherazade: ...What is your point?
Scheherazade: Are you saying that, now that you know how strong women are, you're ready to kill one yourself?
Scheherazade: I told you. Even if you kill me–
Fergus: No, it's not that. My point is that I believe I eventually realized that when I was alive as well.
Fergus: That version of me met, saw, spoke to, and did battle with strong women. I can even remember some names, though only faintly.
Fergus: Medb of Connacht. Scáthach, the queen of the Land of Shadows. Aífe, ferocious as a wild dog.
Fergus: Deirdre, who fiercely fought her awful fate. Ness, who offered up her body so her child could be king.
Fergus: No doubt I met these women after I was fully-formed.
Fergus: But even before I met them, there must have been other, similarly strong women as well.
Fergus: That's what caused me to realize how men and women ought to be.
Scheherazade: I...don't understand what you're talking about. There's no point in bringing up your past.
Fergus: Yes, there is.
Fergus: If I'm going to stop you, I need to tell you about myself. About how greedy I was.
Astolfo: Greedy...? Really? You've been all stoic and earnest, and a real nut for training all this time!
Fergus: I mean that I was greedy for a king.
Fergus: I wanted it all, so I had no choice but to train. It was a sign of my desire, and my anxiety.
Fergus: It's the same with my greed.
Fergus: Mash, do you remember what you told me before?
Fergus: You said that no matter what else may happen, as long as you remain yourself...you'll become who you're meant to be.
Mash: I did? I...Yes. Maybe I did.
Fergus: That's exactly what I'm talking about. In the same way that I came to realize how strong women are...
Fergus: ...the time I spent here in Agartha merely let me experience things I would eventually learn anyway.
Fergus: Some women loved to plunder, some were bound by social norms, and some simply obeyed their leader.
Fergus: What's more, every one of them lived happily in their own way. They all had strong points and shortcomings.
Fergus: I'm a simple man at heart, so I wanted to resolve that complexity. I wanted to know if it was possible to lead a nation in a way that everyone could accept.
Fergus: As I said before, I'm greedy. I couldn't stand the idea of everyone not being happy.
Fergus: So as I learned more about Agartha, I kept thinking, and thinking, and thinking...
Fergus: And in the end, I realized something I should have known all along.
Fujimaru 1: What's that?
Fergus: Haha. The truth is...hahahahaha!
Fergus: I'm not cut out to be a king!
Scheherazade: Huh...? After all that buildup...THAT is all you wanted to say!?
Fergus: Of course not. There's more to it than that.
Fergus: To make a long story short, I realized this morning that I don't measure up.
Fergus: To put it bluntly, I just don't have what it takes to be a king.
Fergus: You all saw that much sooner than I did, but I finally see it for myself now. Thank you all for being kind enough not to say anything.
Fujimaru 1: Uh, sure...No problem...
Fujimaru 2: (Do your best to stay quiet with a straight face. )
Fergus: I never did become a king. Or rather, I didn't stay one for very long.
Da Vinci: True. According to legend, you agreed to step down from the throne for a year and pass it on to your lover's child from a previous marriage.
Da Vinci: But after the year had passed, your subjects still wanted your lover's child to continue ruling.
Da Vinci: So you gracefully stepped aside and became a mere warrior...or so the legend goes.
Fergus: Haha. Gracefully, huh...That's a nice way to put it, but I doubt I had any other choice. By that time, I'm sure I had already realized what I know now.
Fergus: That I didn't have what it takes to be a king. That I was so greedy, it would be wrong of me to pursue that greed from the throne...
Fergus: ...and that fulfilling it as an ordinary man was the right thing to do.
Fergus: In other words, I learned that I was only really suited for cherishing the things I love.
Astolfo: And what're those?
Fergus: Fighting and women, of course.
Mash: (Senpai, Senpai. He's starting to sound more like the usual Fergus! )
Fujimaru 1: (I know, Mash. But let's not bring that up now. )
Fergus: Incidentally, Da Vinci had it backwards.
Fergus: I gave Conchobar the throne so that I could take Ness as my lover.
Fergus: Essentially, I sold my crown all because I wanted a woman's body. Pretty despicable of me, isn't–
Scheherazade: Once again...where are you going with this!? I've never heard such an incoherent story in my life!
Fergus: Really? I was hoping you would give me some leeway on that, since I'm a warrior rather than a storyteller...But, all right. I'll get to the point.
Fergus: Basically, I learned about the strength that women possess.
Fergus: I learned that they are our equals, and in many ways rivals, and are worth devoting my life to pursuing.
Fergus: ...What about you, Scheherazade?
Scheherazade: ...What do you mean?
Fergus: Let me ask you about Agartha. You created it so that women would be the dominant gender.
Scheherazade: I already told you. I used Columbus's desire as the base for–
Fergus: Are you sure about that?
Fergus: Columbus's desire was to get rich by selling slaves. There was no reason those slaves had to be women.
Fergus: As far as he was concerned, the fact that Agartha was full of women was simply icing on the cake.
Fergus: He would have been perfectly happy, and acted the same even if it had been dominated by men.
Fergus: If you had made this world in line with his desire, it could have just as easily been a world ruled by oppressive kings rather than queens.
Fergus: But instead, you went out of your way to make it ruled by women. Why?
Scheherazade: I...I'm not...
Fergus: I see. So you did it unconsciously, without understanding why. My guess is...
Fergus: You did that because you inherently fear men. You see them as being inextricably linked with death.
Fergus: That's why you wanted to keep them under control, and had them treated as livestock rather than people.
Fergus: ...Based on what you told us before, it was clearly that king who instilled this fear in you.
Fergus: He was truly a terrible person, making you endure such torment for a thousand nights. He was not fit to be a king, just as I, though for different reasons.
Scheherazade: Be that as it may...What does it matter?
Fergus: That's why I have to tell you that you're wrong!
Fergus: Now that I've realized the connection between me, the Fergus mac Róich who wanted to be a good king...
Fergus: ...and the Fergus mac Róich who knows how men and women ought to be...
Fergus: I have to make sure you understand the truth I've grasped.
Fujimaru 1: ...(A Celtic truth...? )
Fujimaru 2: ...(Please, let it be something reasonable! )
Fergus: You need men AND women!
Fergus: To make children!
Da Vinci: ...(Whistle)
Holmes: A very sound conclusion. What a profoundly mundane truism.
Scheherazade: Wh-what are you talking about? That's just common sense...
Fergus: Yes, it is. And yet, you don't seem to grasp it.
Fergus: Yes, men can, and do, bring about death. But it's ridiculous to think of them in only that way.
Fergus: There is a much more important role that men and women both share.
Fergus: It's something you should be thinking about long before you think about dying or being killed!
Scheherazade: No, I don't get it...I don't understand.
Scheherazade: To begin with, how I think about death, or men, is none of your business.
Scheherazade: And even if you do erase my fear of death, there is still nothing you can do to stop Laputa!
G：???: Indeed. Laputa will not stop. It will only continue on its path towards the destruction of fantasy.
G：???: Indeed. Laputa will not stop. It will only continue on its path towards the destruction of fantasy.
Astolfo: Why's the body of one of the Resistance members talking!?
I thought you were a storyteller, Scheherazade. Why are you listening insteadof telling.
Demon God Phenex: I thought we had talked about our fear of death. About the cruelty that inevitably accompanies life.
Da Vinci: My my, what a horrible voice. That sounds more in line with what his legend describes. Perhaps it has something to do with his new form.
Da Vinci: At least he's talking in normal sentences now. Is that his new form, or did the poetry just get old? Either way, it certainly simplifies matters.
Da Vinci: At any rate, I suppose we shouldn't be surprised that a demon of death and rebirth is hard to kill.
Da Vinci: At the risk of being repetitive, he's technically already dead. That goes for both the human he's using as a vessel, and the Demon God Pillar himself.
Mash: And yet...he's still here...in the physical world. How is that even possible!?
Fujimaru 1: You're kidding me!
Fujimaru 2: How do we kill something that's already dead?
Demon God Phenex: My friend. The one who understands me.
Demon God Phenex: The one who runs from life and death.
Demon God Phenex:
Didn't I tell you about the many times I have died? About the unfairness of it all?
Demon God Phenex:
I know you have told me about the many times you have died. About the unfairness of it all.
Demon God Phenex: And I know I told you this.
Demon God Phenex:
That you had reached the same conclusion as me, a Demon God–a being who has transcended human understanding.
Demon God Phenex: Thus, it is truth. Our wish is truth. It is wrong for those with many lives to also experience death many times.
Scheherazade: Yes...You're right...
Demon God Phenex:
But worry not. No matter what this rabble may be plotting, our wish WILL be granted.
Demon God Phenex: As long as I am here...No, even if I fall now...
Demon God Phenex:
This fantastical city will still succeed in its descent and destruction of areal city on inertia alone.
Demon God Phenex:
There is no way to stop it. It is I who shall see that the will of the 72 Demon Gods is done.
Demon God Phenex:
The Incineration of Humanity may no longer be possible, but there is no end of ways to bring about their end.
Demon God Phenex: My true ambition in dropping a mystical city is to burst the bubble of human understanding. May its fall bring about humanity's destruction!
Fujimaru 1: You're wrong!
Fujimaru 2: There must be a way to stop it!
Fergus: That's right. I'm certain there is.
Fergus: But to figure it out and actually do it...it seems clear that we'll need to defeat this Demon God first!
Demon God Phenex:
That too is impossible.
Demon God Phenex: The very nature of my being is all I need to declare that my destruction at your hands will never happen. What a pity.
Demon God Phenex:
Scheherazade, you are nearly at death's door. Stay there and bear witness as the world's life and death are blended together with fantasy.
Demon God Phenex:
I promise you that this detestable death will be the last death you shall ever have to suffer!
Mash: The Demon God Pillar has reappeared! His threat level is...even greater than before!
Astolfo: So we didn't splat him hard enough the first time? Man, he's tough!
d'Eon: Nonetheless...I'm afraid we have no choice. We will destroy him as many times as we must!
Fergus: I'm afraid I'm not yet the knight of the Red Branch. I'm still on my way to becoming that.
Fergus: But even so...I promise I'll use everything currently at my disposal to make up for being miscast.
Da Vinci: I guess we'll just have to find a way to destroy him while we fight.
Da Vinci: At any rate, we've finally found our ultimate objective. He may be one of Goetia's pesky remnants...
Da Vinci: ...but I bet that if Goetia were here now, he'd be clutching his ears and saying “We have no need for one such as this! ” after hearing him speak!
Da Vinci: I have no love lost for the King of Demon Gods, but we can at least pay him the minimum amount of respect we owe to any formidable opponent.
Da Vinci: On behalf of Chaldea and all humanity, destroy the Demon God Phenex! Get him, Fujimaru!
Fergus: Our attacks are landing...but we can't seem to kill him!
d'Eon: This is no time for compliments, but...no wonder he is called the Demon God of death and rebirth!
Astolfo: We're kiiinda worn out after all this fighting! If something doesn't give, I don't like our chances!
Demon God Phenex: Crushing: loathsome. Burning: lamentable. Beheading: unwatchable. Now, the manner of your deaths!
Mash: His offense is relentless! Master, I think you should do something!
Fujimaru 1: Don't worry, we'll get a chance. I'm sure of it!
Demon God Phenex: ...Ragnarok then. Wonderful. This will link life and death like never before.
F：???: ...I've been waiting for this moment.
Wu Zetian: I am unable to kill Scheherazade, for I am, without doubt, a “king” greater than any other.
Wu Zetian: And as you had bonded with her, I could not kill you either. Thus, I had no choice but to hide, and bide my time for the chance to strike.
Wu Zetian: But now that you have separated, that time has come!
Fujimaru 1: Wu Zetian!
Fujimaru 2: Little Wu!
Wu Zetian: How dare you address me, the greatest empress who ever lived, so informally! Your insolence goes too far, uh...Dammit, I forgot what I was calling you!
Wu Zetian: Well, no matter. I shall not soon forget this transgression, Fujimaru!
Astolfo: Funny how she still remembers your actual name...
Wu Zetian: Silence, pink-haired hussy! Do not misunderstand me. This nation is still mine. I am still alive, after all, and I certainly never relinquished my throne!
Wu Zetian: As such, this hooligan is nothing more than a nuisance to my nation!
Wu Zetian: If he thinks he can float my land into the sky and drop it unpunished, this fool is gravely mistaken!
Mash: Wu Zetian! R-right...Her signal did disappear when Megalos crushed her in the Nightless City...
Mash: But I never saw exactly why that happened.
Mash: I assumed her Spirit Origin signal had vanished after that attack.
Mash: But she could have just been using her skills as an Assassin to conceal her presence this whole time!
Demon God Phenex: Khh...You have wasted your effort, interloper...Cursed Wu Zetian! What can you hope to–
Wu Zetian: Once I have found a criminal, the next step is obvious!
Wu Zetian: Torture, torture, and more torture!
Wu Zetian: Torture is the art of keeping one's victim alive as long and agonizingly as possible while killing him!
Wu Zetian: Now plunge into my deadly pot, Demon God!
Demon God Phenex: Graaahhh...! Irksome flea!
Wu Zetian: Ghh...!
Fujimaru 1: Wu Zetian!
Fujimaru 2: Little Wu!
Wu Zetian: ...Idiot! Simpleton! Fool! Don't just stand there!
Wu Zetian: Surely you can find a way to kill even the Demon God of death and rebirth if he is being kept in a state of both life and death!
Wu Zetian: Now hurry up and finish him off!
Astolfo: How!? He's all...wriggling around and stuff, and he's surrounded by a poisonous bog!
Fergus: ...Now I see. So this is why I'm here.
Fergus: d'Eon. Astolfo.... Fujimaru.
Fergus: The rest is up to you. Don't worry, I never had more than a bit part to play. It won't make any difference to the story if I'm gone.
Astolfo: H-hey...You're not seriously going in there!?
Wu Zetian: What is that fool doing, jumping into my Noble Phantasm!?
Fergus: If I've read this right, this is a melting pot of life and death, shaped and molded by the pain of torture. It is another plane of existence, one where the very concepts of life and death mingle together.
Fergus: So when I die here, and simultaneously come back to life, that should give me a chance to try again.
Fujimaru 1: A chance to try again...?
Fergus: Ghh, ah...Aah...! If this pot is truly a place where life and death are mixed together...
Fergus: ...and if, as the still-developing Fergus mac Róich who would ordinarily never even exist...
Fergus: I am able to accept both life and death at the same time...then in that moment...
Fergus: That should create a link to the version of me who should have been summoned all along!
Da Vinci: So you're trying to force a connection between your death, and your rebirth!
Da Vinci: That is certainly bold of you. You're essentially trying to resummon yourself.
Da Vinci: But it could work. It would only be for a moment, but that WOULD let you make contact with your older self.
Da Vinci: Except...you were already fairly injured to begin with, so that torturous Noble Phantasm could end up actually killing you.
Da Vinci: How are you planning to go about the “rebirth” part?
Fergus: With this...!
Astolfo: A Tamatebako! You still had one!?
Fergus: It's the one...Columbus tried...to use. Luckily, it happened...to land near me...Ghhh...!
Fergus: There's no more time. Here goes nothing. I'm going to accept this pain and death...and use the Tamatebako's magical energy to be reborn instantaneously.
Fergus: At the same time, I'll pull out at least part of my true self's existence from the space between life and death...and make it my own!
Fergus: Here goooeees...!
Fergus: Ghh. Hra, aah...That's it. That's it...
Fergus: Grow like a rainbow. Become a sword of infinite length, but a sword nonetheless. For my rainbow sword of unending length...
Fergus: ...is also a spiral sword! My Spiral Rainbow Sword...Caladbolg!
d'Eon: That is...the sword the other Fergus carries!
Astolfo: That little dagger...? Really!?
Fergus: With this sword, even a careless strike made in anger can easily annihilate three hilltops. Its power is great enough to destroy entire landscapes.
Fergus: As such, I shall use it to crush both the Demon God who eternally wanders between life and death...
Fergus: ...and this land of fantasy floating beneath my feet!
d'Eon: Incredible...Caladbolg is absorbing all the surrounding magical energy as it spins, which is causing it to spin even faster!
Fergus: Rainbow! Spill forth where the spiral leads!
Fergus: –Caledfwlch Caladbolg!
Demon God Phenex: GRAAAHHH!
Fergus: Still not enough, huh? In that case...Fujimaru! Finish him off!
Wu Zetian: Impudent boy, stirring up my Noble Phantasm like a mixing bowl! Well, what are you...(cough) waiting for!? Do it!
Mash: Master! We can't waste this opportunity they've created for us!
Fujimaru 1: Time to finish him off!
Fujimaru 2: This ends now!
Mash: The Demon God Pillar is slowing down! It's working!
Fergus: Hnghhh...Hraaah! Almost...there...!
Scheherazade: Please, stop it...You're destroying Laputa!
Scheherazade: If you do that...I'll have to die, over and over, who knows how many times again!
Fergus: Hahaha...This poison's not so bad once you get used to it. It's starting to feel more like a nice hot bath. At any rate...
Fergus: I told you that men and women have an important role, but you still don't get what comes after that.
Fergus: It's okay to live in fear of death. That's a feeling everyone has to different degrees.
Fergus: But it's BECAUSE death inevitably comes at the end that you have to make sure to enjoy life.
Fergus: A good life is one spent enjoying the pleasures it offers. Enjoying food. Enjoying drink. Enjoying battle. Enjoying sex. Enjoying laughter.
Fergus: ...I have every sympathy for you that you weren't able to live like that. But even if you weren't...
Fergus: You should still find a way to smile! That exquisite body of yours is wasted if all you are is miserable!
Fujimaru 1: Fergus!!!
Fujimaru 2: (Groan)
Fergus: ...Wait, no, that's not right. Sorry, forget I said that.
Fergus: You are a strong woman to have fought death for so long. But the time for that is over. Now, you should live your life in a way that makes you happy.
Fergus: The way you're living now: always shirking away, the fear of death constantly hanging over you to the point where you can't muster the slightest hint of joy...
Fergus: How is that any different from being dead?
Fergus: I don't know about you, but the idea of living your whole life dreading what comes at the end doesn't sound like much fun to me!
Fergus: If you're prepared to destroy the world all because you don't want to die...If you've got that much strength within you...
Fergus: Then show me you're also prepared to meet life head-on with a smile!
Scheherazade: I don't understand...I'll never understand. I can't smile. What would be the point!?
Fergus: Men are suckers for women with lovely smiles. Naturally, that goes for me too!
Fergus: So if you smile...you'll be able to land yourself a real catch, like me!
Fergus: If you landed me, I'd gladly make love to you. I'd do everything in my power to ensure we had beautiful, healthy children. And...
Fergus: I'd protect you from all manner of deaths, from the pain and frustration that life keeps throwing at you, as much as I possibly can!
Fujimaru 1: ...Is he sexually harassing her?
Fujimaru 2: ...Is he confessing his love for her?
Mash: No, this is Fergus's way of being encouraging! Never mind what he's saying! His voice is filled with such life-affirming energy!
Mash: It is practically brimming with energy!
Fergus: Haha, if I inspired that sort of reaction in you, Ms. Mash, that's a fine compliment indeed!
Fergus: But then, I guess that's no surprise, seeing as that was also one of my best pickup lines yet! There's not a woman in the world who wouldn't fall for it!
Fergus: And I haven't let up on my Spiral Sword one bit either!
Fergus: A true Celtic warrior is one who both gets the girl AND saves the world!
Scheherazade: Th-that is the most arrogant, bullheaded, egotistical, moronic, self-centered way of thinking with one's phallus I've ever heard!
Scheherazade: Those words are no more than wind! They are utterly hollow! There's no way to protect someone from “all manner of deaths. ”
Scheherazade: It's absolutely impossible!
Fergus: Hmm, you've got a point there. That may have been a bit much. If someone like Ms. Scáthach were to attack us, we'd be pretty thoroughly screwed.
Fergus: But even in times like that, there'd be something there to replace your fear of death.
Fergus: And I think the quickest way there is to help you get over it.
Fergus: Have you ever been attended to by a handsome man when you were ill? Or had a beloved child squeeze your hand while you were laid up in bed?
Scheherazade: ...I don't understand. Just what are you trying to say?
Fujimaru 1: Scheherazade, it's normal to fear death...
Fujimaru 1: ...but fear can be laid to rest by living a meaningful life.
Fergus: Exactly. You see, O beautiful-bodied one? Even the young Master gets it.
Fujimaru 1: Well, I HAVE seen it firsthand a lot by now.
Fergus: If a man you loved from the bottom of your heart...or a child you had raised with tender care...were by your side, you wouldn't even have time to fear death.
Fergus: I imagine you're only saying such things because you've never been able to negate that fear.
Demon God Phenex: Agh, aggghhh! No. Not yet!
d'Eon: What!? Thin tentacles are shooting out from his body, and headed for...Oh no!
Astolfo: I can't believe he still had that much strength left!
Demon God Phenex: Aghhh it hurts I'm dying I'm dying while living I'm dying in the middle of the provisional contradiction when life becomes death!
Demon God Phenex: I am too exhausted to escape this muddied space of both life and death, nor can I escape from the spiraling rainbow gouging away at me!
Demon God Phenex: Scheherazade. Scheherazade! Give me the last of your strength, your life, even a little will do...AGHHH!
Demon God Phenex: I...I'll die like this! But the concept I represent will end without dying!
Demon God Phenex: Somewhere, the concept of the phoenix will have a worthless, meaningless end where it dies countless times without rebirth!
Demon God Phenex: I'm melting I'm sinking it hurts it hurts to infinity hurry and give them to me you laggard I don't want to die hurry up hurry up it hurts AAAAAAGGGHHH!!!
Demon God Phenex: How many times have I suffered the pain of death the fear of death it's not fair we're the only ones THE ONLY ONES! It's not fair it's not right I won't I won't I won't accept iiit!
d'Eon: Hurry, we must finish him off!
d'Eon: Or perhaps we should use a projectile of some sort to finish off Scheherazade instead!?
Astolfo: Wait! Hang on! Don't think we need to do that!
Scheherazade: ...No. This time, I refuse.
Demon God Phenex: Wha...what are you doooing!? Have you gone mad, my friend!? I thought you feared death as I do! That you understood it like I do!
Scheherazade: Indeed...I do. I understand it very well.
Scheherazade: I know that I won't change. Even when this transient life ends, and the next me begins anew elsewhere...
Scheherazade: I have little doubt that I will again be dreading the prospect of death.
Scheherazade: ...But despite that, Phenex...
Scheherazade: The way you are now...is just a bit unseemly.
Demon God Phenex: ...What is this what is this what is this!? Scheherazade!
Scheherazade: ...Fearing death as I do, I can't help but be particular about the manner in which I die.
Scheherazade: And at the least, I've decided I don't want this death to be at the hands of something as unseemly as you.
Scheherazade: It is that simple.
Wu Zetian: Khh...I can't keep this up any longer. Now is the time! Bring him down!
Fergus: As you wish, my little empress! Hraaahhh!
Demon God Phenex: Ah...agh...AAAaaaghhhHHH Life death life death life death life life death death deaaath AAAGHHH!
Wu Zetian: Neehahah–No, that's how the daughter of a poor government official would laugh. Kehaha, haha...Yes, there we go. That's how an empress should laugh.
Wu Zetian: I worked...really hard, you know. I studied...as much as I could...I memorized books...and poems...Khh...!
Wu Zetian: I suppressed my desire...to play...Everything I did...I did to get...where I wanted to go.
Wu Zetian: I am...an empress. I decided...that's what I would be. So that's what I will be...right to...the end...
Wu Zetian: Kehaha, hahaha! That criminal got the punishment he deserved! Well...done...
d'Eon: Wu Zetian...
Wu Zetian: I only came to see that this criminal was properly punished. I had no interest in saving any of you.
Wu Zetian: (Cough) You hear...me...!?
Fujimaru 1: I know. But...thank you anyway.
Fujimaru 2: We are in your debt, Your Highness.
Wu Zetian: ...Hehe. Still, since I was able to torture that imbecile who tried to overthrow my nation myself...
Wu Zetian: I'm in a rather good mood. An excellent mood, in fact. So...just for today...
Wu Zetian: I may just permit you to pat my head, or give me candy...if you like...Neehaha...
Fujimaru 1: Maybe...we'll see her again someday.
d'Eon: True. Our lives are prone to unexpected goodbyes and meetings alike. That's just how it is.
d'Eon: And right now, we are still here...
Scheherazade: ...As I said, I know that I won't change. Not one bit.
Scheherazade: But, I think it is your fault that I did that.
Fujimaru 1: What do you mean?
Fujimaru 2: You sure you haven't changed just a bit?
Scheherazade: It's because you said the fear of death could be laid to rest by living a meaningful life. I simply cannot possibly believe that.
Scheherazade: But it did get me thinking...just a little...in a simplistic, fleeting, reflexive sort of way, without any thought as to what the future may actually hold...
Scheherazade: ...about how I might prefer to die when the time comes.
Scheherazade: Dying with those I love by my bedside, secure in the knowledge that I had lived a full life...
Scheherazade: Or dying by becoming part of something unseemly that is just using me as an energy source...
Scheherazade: I thought, “Given the choice between those two possibilities, which should I choose? ”
Scheherazade: And I merely ended up choosing the former without even realizing I had done so. That is all.
Fergus: Haha...I see. Still, I'm glad to hear it...
Fujimaru 1: Fergus...
Fergus: Now don't look at me like that. I pushed myself well beyond my limits, after all. This was bound to happen when all was said and done. Agh...
Fergus: Both my body and spirit are in tatters at this point.
Fergus: But, having my present and my past, my life and my death, all in one form like this...isn't so bad.
Fergus: Hey, Scheherazade.
Fergus: If I got you to believe in living a meaningful life, then I guess all that blathering of mine paid off.
Fergus: Even if that belief only lasts for this short time.
Fergus: If you can, I hope you'll also sit down at some point and reread the events that took place here in Agartha as one of your own stories.
Fergus: And that you'll come to see yourself as the woman who despised immortality in the end.
Fergus: It'd be a lot more constructive than going through life always thinking about how you don't want to die.
Scheherazade: I...don't know about that. I still don't understand at all.
Fergus: I see. In that case, you'll need a teacher you can depend on. Someone like Fergus mac Róich: as handsome a man as you'll ever find.
Fergus: The next time you come to life, make sure you seek me out, and let me make love to you. Do that, and you'll be sure to understand.
Fujimaru 1: Okay, that's clearly sexual harassment!
Scheherazade: ...(Sigh) What a strange man you are.
Fergus: Oho! Does that mean you'll do it!?
Scheherazade: Not at all. I refuse from the bottom of my heart. In fact,I thoroughly detest dealing with you in any capacity.
Scheherazade: You're slightly more bearable as you are now, but I refuse to meet your adult self. It would lead to an entirely different, perhaps worse, kind of death.
Fergus: Hmm. You have a point there.
Fergus: I HAVE made a great many women feel as though they were about to die from sheer bliss.
Scheherazade: Hehe. Now look what you've done. My end approaches, and I had no time to prepare because you got me thinking about the kind of “death” you would give me.... Ahh, now I see. So this is what you meant...
Fergus: Hmm. Maybe she did smile in the end, at least a little.
Fujimaru 1: ...Uh...Sure, Fergus. Sure she did.
Fergus: Now then...I think it's time for me to go too.
Fergus: I may have been miscast from the start, and I couldn't even do a good job as a bit-part player...
Fergus: But to be honest, I enjoyed adventuring in this underground world with you all. I have no regrets.
Fergus: I hope we'll meet again someday, if we get the chance.
Fergus: Next time, I hope I can drink with you in my true knight form, without any reservations...
Astolfo: Hmph, some bit player he was. That kinda extra doesn't even leave room for the stars!
d'Eon: Indeed. Given that he so brilliantly prevented Laputa from crashing into the land...
Fujimaru 1: Yup. He was the lead role, no two ways about it.
Da Vinci: Hey, guys? Sorry to interrupt, but now's not exactly the time to be getting all sentimental.
Da Vinci: Thanks to Fergus's spiral sword physically destroying Laputa's landscape, it's completely come to a halt...
Da Vinci: ...and we no longer have to worry about it falling on a major city. However...
Da Vinci: The trade-off is that the Singularity has disappeared, which means Laputa is going to completely fall apart.
Da Vinci: In other words, the chances of your survival are dropping rapidly even as we speak!
Astolfo: Okay, I take that last part back! Fergus isn't the lead anymore!
Astolfo: Where's he get off destroying the ground we walk on without so much as an “Astolfo-may-I? ”
d'Eon: Agreed. Though I do not believe there WAS any time to discuss it, nor any alternative solution at hand!
Da Vinci: Mash, the first thing I need you to do is calculate where the wreckage separating from Laputa will land!
Mash: Done! Don't worry, it's going to fall on the Tibetan Plateau. There are no people there!
Da Vinci: In that case, we'll worry about it later. I do feel a little bad for all the nature and wildlife that's going to be majorly affected by this, though.
Da Vinci: I also don't envy the people from the Association in this time who'll have to deal with this mess, but oh well, nothing I can do about that, no sirree.
Da Vinci: ...Now then, next order of business: rescuing the people still on Laputa!
Astolfo: Can't you just Rayshift Master out of here?
d'Eon: There are other humans here as well, as you may recall. Namely, the surviving Resistance members, and the men who had been imprisoned.
Astolfo: ...Oh crap! I forgot all about them!
Astolfo: Maybe my hippogriff could–no, there's no way he could carry everyone! What do we do!?
d'Eon: Wait, I just remembered. Astolfo, remember the Resistance men you put to work?
d'Eon: Thanks to them, the survivors should all be gathered in one place now. Is there no way we can help them escape, Mademoiselle Da Vinci?
Da Vinci: Just call me Da Vinci! Anyway, I know we have to do something about them. The question is: what? Hmm...
Mash: I'm running all sorts of simulations as we speak, but there's so little time!
Astolfo: Oh crap, the shaking's getting even worse. Don't think we got time to wait for the perfect solution!
Astolfo: F-for the moment, I'll get on my trusty hippogriff and make sure there're no stragglers!
Astolfo: If I find any, I'll bring 'em to the meetup point, so make sure you think of a way to get them out of here in the meantime! Up up and awaaay!
Holmes: Oh, my apologies. I was so taken by the spectacle unfolding before me that I forgot to make my report.
Holmes: Well, better late than never, I suppose: Astolfo, you may wish to pay attention to your flight path.
Astolfo: Ow! What was that!?
Astolfo: It looks like...some sort of flying silver pot?
D：???: Looks like you could use some help! I can feel Mahatma at work in this too!
Fujimaru 1: It's Helena! On a flying saucer...!?
Fujimaru 2: Ms. Helena!? You look even more radiant than usual!
Helena: Yes, it's me! Helena Blavatsky, flying explorer extraordinaire!
Mash: Wh-what are you doing here? I mean, I'm very happy to see you and all, but!
Helena: Hmm...Now you mention it, what AM I doing here?
Helena: First an Agarthan...no, a guy with a weird beard shot me, but I survived because I fell into a nearby river.
Helena: But I was still in really bad shape, so I erected a really strong barrier and went to sleep underground so that I could heal.
Helena: Then, after I recovered, I started exploring Agartha itself. Oh, and I just happened upon a Holy Grail!
Helena: I brought it back to my mobile lab and used it to power up into Super Helena, which is nice and all...
Helena: But then I noticed all this shaking, and I thought it might've been something I did. So, I decided to come out and see what was going on.
Helena: Hm? You know, it actually feels like there was something different about me before I went to sleep, but I can't put my finger on it...
Da Vinci: If Helena was part of the cast in Scheherazade's story, she may have had some sort of inauthenticity.
Da Vinci: Not that there's any way to find out now, of course.
Holmes: A Holy Grail underground...Perhaps that was what served as the Singularity's structural core.
Holmes: I imagine it must have come free once the destruction was underway.
Helena: Oh, Sherlock. I didn't know you were here too. No exploring for you this time, huh.
Helena: Anyway, what happened to Agartha? When do I get my chance to shine?
Helena: Wait, hang on. I just realized this whole landmass is flying! What sort of mystical forces are at play here? And why's it all falling apart!?
Helena: Do I even have time to explore it now!?
Mash: Never mind that now, Helena! There's something important we need to ask you! You're the only one who can help us!
Fujimaru 1: Hey, yeah. With a flying saucer like this...!
Fujimaru 2: Could you fit about a hundred people on there!?
Helena: Huh? Hmm, well, there's no room for them inside, but I think they could all fit on top...
Mash: Master and d'Eon could ride on Astolfo's hippogriff, but there are other people there that need help.
Mash: All you'd have to do is get them safely to the ground. Please!
Helena: ...I get the feeling I already missed out on all the fun stuff, and I am NOT happy about that!
Helena: But in the face of such a heartfelt plea, I suppose I have no choice but to say...
Helena: ...of course! Just this once, I'll let you all experience how wonderful Mahatma is for yourselves!
Narration: And so, they watched the events unfold from the back of Astolfo's hippogriff.
Narration: Here the story comes to a close. The fantastical city, created by the soothing words of a woman terrified of death, was falling apart.
Narration: A downward gaze would reveal the men aboard the flying saucer waving their hands wildly...
Narration: ...as it made its way to the ground in what might generously be described as an erratic manner.
Narration: No doubt they will soon arrive at their homes, where their loving families await them.
Narration: They will tell their wives, their children, their friends about their adventures here, and, in time, most likely forget about them.
Narration: ...That is their story. A story that only they can tell.
Narration: The destruction continues apace. Pieces of earth, as though suddenly remembering they are not meant to fly...
Narration: ...make their way back to the ground where they belong, accompanied by great sounds akin to heavy rain, the peal of thunder, or a woman sobbing.
Narration: ...Laputa. “The whore. ” For the woman who gave it its name, one filled with self-loathing and resignation...
Narration: ...it may have felt like a part of herself...one to which she had entrusted her fondest wish.
Narration: Or perhaps it was more akin to a past she despised...one she wished to destroy by crashing it into the world?
Narration: No doubt such a question will find its answer...in the stories only she can tell...
Holmes: Hmm. Perhaps it needs a bit more?
Holmes: “Thus, they succeeded brilliantly in carrying out the Remnant Order for the underground world.
Holmes: ...But we must not forget that there were four Pillars which escaped from the Temple of Time.
Holmes: We know that there are other survivors still remaining.
Holmes: Curiously, this case–much like Shinjuku–seemed steeped in stories.
Holmes: Putting the question of whether these two cases shared similar themes aside...
Holmes: The time will no doubt come soon when they find themselves in the midst of another new story...”
Holmes: That does make it clearer, but it's also rather superfluous. Then again, it may be important to allude to the fact that these events are still in motion...
Holmes: ...(Sigh) I just can't seem to find the right words for this last sentence. I think I shall have to come back to it later.
Holmes: Jotting down my thoughts to help pass the time is all well and good, but it's clear that I have no talent for the written word.
Holmes: I learned that lesson well during the case of the blanched soldier and the case of the lion's mane.
Holmes: If it's all going to turn out the same in the end, I may as well leave the storytelling to Watson and save myself some time.
Holmes: ...Then again, when you get right down to it...
Holmes: Perhaps there would be no need to record my cases at all if there were a beautiful woman with a lovely voice ready to tell these “stories” at any time.
Fergus: Oho! I sense a beautiful woman nearby!
Fergus: ...Guess I was imagining things. I could have sworn I smelled perfume, though.
Fergus: Oh well, guess I'll just have to go back to casually showing off my muscles with Celtic push-ups.
Fergus: Back when I was a kid, I used to do this whenever I had a spare moment in order to train...
Fergus: But now that I've put on all this muscle, I only ever do it to show off, don't I.
Fergus: Hup, hup, hup.
Fergus: All right, beautiful woman. Feel free to pass through this hall, feast your eyes on these manly muscles, and be overcome with lust any time now...
Fergus: There! Luscious curves at twelve o'clock!
Fergus: Not again...
Fergus: You know, I haven't bedded many women lately. Maybe I've lost my touch? I'd better find a way to turn things around before it's too late.
Scheherazade: That was too close...
Scheherazade: I must be certain to never, ever run into him.
Scheherazade: After all...
Scheherazade: I don't want to die just yet...